Wisdom for my Sons

Month: February, 2012

The tragedy of modern man. 2.29.12

From Evernote:

The tragedy of modern man. 2.29.12

"the tragedy of modern man is not that he knows less and less about the meaning of his own life, but that it bothers him less and less…"-Os Guiness

Sloth, one of the seven deadly sins, is categorized by many simply as laziness and indifference…Os Guiness calling it "the noonday demon." Sadly the true definition of sloth can easily be lost in the common terms used to define it. Sloth in reality is a condition of spiritual dejection where an one has given up the pursuit of God, resulting in inner despair. This condition can exist just as much in someone who appears super active as one who is a lazy couch potato. Sloth is the numbness of no longer caring about anything…the proverbial "whatever"…seeing that life is broken and lacking when pursued separate from God. The modern life of convienence and comfort, which are not to be shunned…allow for sloth to reside close. Action. My sons, the world and your role in it is designed to pursuit God. The design does not depend or change upon your willingness to acknowledge it; pursue Him and vibrant, full life is the fruit…refrain from the pursuit and sloth and cursing will follow. Knowing God’s character and searching out His design and presence in every detail of life is the joyful journey of life. When the "noon day demon" of sloth and despondence come knocking, which it does for everyone…prayerfully seek Gods purspose and presence in the moment…remembering Him, for it is a spiritual condition of the heart.

All are sinful and fall short. 4.20.11 & 4.28.12

From Evernote:

All are sinful and fall short. 4.20.11 & 4.28.12

Obviously, the law applies to those to whom it was given, for its purpose is to keep people from having excuses, and to show that the entire world is guilty before God. Romans 3:19

When the purpose of God’s word is forgotten, it can create a great burden in the Christian life. For the purpose of the law was to daily remind us that we fall short of God’s expectations…humbling us as we remember our need of a Savor. Pride can begin to distort our dependency, as we start getting our Christian lives in line feeling like we are obeying God and doing alright. The more we read the more we see a rule to obey, or a box to check….given enough time we become a mini-Pharisee. Pharisees sense no need for a savor just like a pagan, because they are doing all the right things. Action. My sons, I share this only to free you and help you see a tricky way Satan likes to steal our freedom in Christ. You are a sinner, so am I…this side of heaven that is our natural state. The daily reminders of sin point to our need of a Savior…rejoice in the good news of the gospel thanking God that He provided a way for us to be saved.

Where did he go wrong? 2.27.12

From Evernote:

Where did he go wrong? 2.27.12

Love wisdom like a sister; make insight a beloved member of your family. Let them protect you from an affair with an immoral woman, from listening to the flattery of a promiscuous woman. While I was at the window of my house, looking through the curtain, I saw some naive young men,

and one in particular who lacked common sense. He was crossing the street near the house of an immoral woman, strolling down the path by her house. It was at twilight, in the evening,

as deep darkness fell. The woman approached him, seductively dressed and sly of heart. She was the brash, rebellious type, never content to stay at home. She is often in the streets and markets,

soliciting at every corner. Come, let’s drink our fill of love until morning. Let’s enjoy each other’s caresses, for my husband is not home. He’s away on a long trip. So she seduced him with her pretty speech and enticed him with her flattery. He followed her at once,

like an ox going to the slaughter. He was like a stag caught in a trap, awaiting the arrow that would pierce its heart. He was like a bird flying into a snare, little knowing it would cost him his life. So listen to me, my sons, and pay attention to my words. Don’t let your hearts stray away toward her. Don’t wander down her wayward path. For she has been the ruin of many; many men have been her victims. Her house is the road to the grave. Her bedroom is the den of death. (Proverbs 7:4-12, 18, 19, 21-27 NLT)

Lust and the adulterous woman…the ruin of many men…the road to the grave….the den of death. This verse speaks so insightfully to the often forgotten detail of this destructive sin…that it presents itself many times to those who are not necessary out looking for it. A man may not have the willfull

intent…but yet still finds himself in trouble because he is naive and lacking common sense; thinking he can stroll by her proverbial house without getting in trouble. Modern day examples of this are everywhere… married men lacking common sense and single men lacking simple wisdom, both hanging around with their naive "buddies" in environments where promiscuous, insecure women go to prey on men. Action. My sons, know that like David, the man after Gods own heart; you are never above the fall. Wisdom and insight if you choose to embrace them, will guide you to steer clear of these environments. Know this as well, as you look for an amazing godly woman to be your wife, common sense will apply hear as well…just as the promiscuous woman is found in certain places, so the godly woman is found in others. Don’t fool yourself as you long for one, but naively go looking in the place of the other.

No such thing as perfect conditions. 5.5.11 & 2.23.12

From Evernote:

No such thing as perfect conditions. 5.5.11 & 2.23.12

Farmers who wait for perfect weather never plant. If they watch every cloud, they never harvest. Just as you cannot understand the path of the wind or the mystery of a tiny baby growing in its mother’s womb, so you cannot understand the activity of God, who does all things. Plant your seed in the morning and keep busy all afternoon, for you don’t know if profit will come from one activity or another—or maybe both. -Ecclesiastes 11:4-6

Big dreams and plans in life have a way of never getting off the ground because of the human tendency to want all conditions to be perfect and all unknowns to be answered before beginning. Where does this come from? In reality, the desire for all things to align before beginning is rooted in laziness…the lazy man’s life being full of excuses. Like the proverb of the man refusing to go outside because there might be a lion in the street, these excuses are unrealistic and created to internally justify not putting forth effort. Every program of action is subject to the mysteries and activities of God, in which we’ll never be able to fully account for or understand, so accept them as a constant in life. Action. My sons, never make excuses for not making the most of your life, you are accountable to God for the process as He determines the results…daily be diligent and excellent in what you can control being free and content, rejoicing always in the divine sovereignty of God.

Where are the responsible? 7.26.11 & 2.22.12

From Evernote:

Where are the responsible? 7.26.11 & 2.22.12

"Responsibility is obedience by another name…we are responsible to God, and our calling is where we exercise that responsibility." -Os Guinness

It is said that a boy becomes a man when he begins to take responsibility for his actions in life. Men today may age on the outside but they remain little boys on the inside for they run and hide from the weight of responsibility. It is interesting to think of our obedience to God as taking responsibility of that which we will have to give an account for. Our sense of being accountable to God for relationships, time, money, gifts, skills, ideas, opportunities have all but disappeared from our thought process. Like the parable…where is the faithful, responsible servant who handles the masters estate well? Action. My sons, being a called man is being a responsible man…the key is seeing all things in life as God ordained resources to be cultivated and stewarded well to the honor and glory of God. Purpose and passion of calling is the fruitful by product of living responsibly before God.

Always comes down to jumping. 2.21.12

From Evernote:

Always comes down to jumping. 2.21.12

"The reality of being an entrepreneur is like jumping off a high cliff knowing that you’ll need to build a plane before you hit the ground." -Reid Hoffman, cofounder paypal

Trust in the Lord with all your heart;

do not depend on your own understanding. (Proverbs 3:5 NLT)

What makes a good entrepreneur? The more I observe…it appears the differentiator, or x-factor, is less about a secret skill set and more about the courage to jump. Each venture always coming to that point of needing to jump…where everyone looks at each other knowing beyond this point, failure and or turning back is no longer an option; the plane must be built before hitting the ground. The paralytic nature of fear destroys…it destroys our faith in God, our potential and robs us of amazing opportunities to see God work. In no way is the intent to compare the spirit of an entrepreneur to Godliness…but rather the analogy gives a great picture of intentionally looking for ways to step out trusting God while many of the answers still lie beyond our own understanding. Action. My sons, risk is apart of life. Any program of action has certain inherent risks to it. Know that human nature defaults to fear, loosing their ability to logically assess and measure risk apart from the emotion of fear. Desire to be a man who trusts God…seeking daily to live beyond your own understanding of circumstances and events…trusting in the abilities and skills God has given you, all while knowing He is with you always.

Sin and it’s extremes. 2.20.12

From Evernote:

Sin and it’s extremes. 2.20.12

"As scientists and engineers know, one of the best ways to understand the average of anything is to study the extreme conditions." -Unusually Excellent by John Hamm

This qoute, all though not it’s intention, sparked a reminder how as believers we can proactively cultivate a healthy fear of God while redeeming our perspective of sin. Sin many times lingers around in our life, for it’s not extreme (yet)…instead feeling average and mild in nature, not really setting off any alarms. The extreme danger here becomes our thought process, thinking sin is an isolated event…when in reality it’s a chain reaction, one more progressive step down a steep slippery slope. The best way to understand the destructive weight of sin is to look at it’s extremes, knowing that if left unchecked… that is exactly where we are headed. Lust full thoughts-look at the affair that destroys a mans legacy and family. Greed-look at the storied Ebinizer Scrooge and the self made prison robbed of joy and contentment. Gluttony and lack of self-control-look at obesity and the thief of vibrant life it becomes. Pride-look at how it ignites insecurities and destroys relationships. Then on the contrary…for perfect purity, generosity, self-control and humility-look at and admire Jesus. Action. My sons, life is a real-time proverb…all you have to do is watch, study and learn. Never take sin lightly, for it is a far more advanced enemy…understand and observe its deceitful nature. For the extremes are always where sin will lead us, ultimately ending in death. It is by Gods grace that we don’t experience the full weight of our sinful actions each day. Rejoice and give thanks for the Good News of the Gospel daily, being wise in your living and redemptive of heart, as you deal with the lifelong presence of sin.

Joy in discovering Gods design. 2.17.12

From Evernote:

Joy in discovering Gods design. 2.17.12

It is God’s privilege to conceal things

and the king’s privilege to discover them. (Proverbs 25:2 NLT)

By wisdom the Lord founded the earth;

by understanding he created the heavens. By his knowledge the deep fountains of the earth burst forth,

and the dew settles beneath the night sky. (Proverbs 3:19, 20 NLT)

God, the master Creator and architect of the heavens and the earth…designed all things with perfectly divine, infinite wisdom and understanding. What great joy for God to conceal the ornate wisdom of his design. Hidding it’s mysteries deep in space and far down under ground…concealing its simplicities into the heart and spirit of a child or it’s human tendencies in a complex economy. God’s wisdom as Creator is designed into all things, cleaverly concealed so man has the joyful privilege of discovering them. Scientists get to understand and make know the heavens, miners exlpore and make known the depts of the earth, parents discover the innocence and simplicity of our faith in their children, while business guys learn the psychology and tendencies of a complex market economy. Action. My sons, life is a huge adventure in knowing and discovering God…don’t think for a second that his presence is limited to church pews and bible studies. He is the owner and creator of all things and he gives you the privilege of discovering His purpose and design in all things. Get this and you will be a blessed man for all of life becomes saturated with the presence of God.

Live with the end in mind. 12.22.10 & 2.16.12

From Evernote:

Live with the end in mind. 12.22.10 & 2.16.12

A wise person thinks a lot about death,

while a fool thinks only about having a good time. Ecclesiastes 7:4

As morbid as it is, there is great wisdom in this verse. As we think about death…we are actually cultivating a perspective that numbers our days…and strengthens our intentionality and enjoyment of the few days we are given here on earth. If a man thinks little about his death, he takes for granted his time on here on earth placing little value on people, friends, family, his walk with God etc. Life is sweeter and more blessed when we know it is a gift, that is fragile and brief. Action. My sons, perspective is everything… picture yourself on your death bed looking back on your life…how will you have wanted to live it…go live and enjoy today with end in mind.

Subtle effects of pride. 2.15.12

From Evernote:

Subtle effects of pride. 2.15.12

Haughtiness goes before destruction; humility precedes honor. Proverbs 18:12

Why does pride destroy and humility precede honor?…Giving much thought to this verse. Honor and esteem in and of itself is a very challenging test and heavy weight to steward. For it tests man with the lust of the flesh and boastful pride of life, exposing him to power, influence, etc. Honor requires a very strong foundation in a man to properly steward. The proud, arrogant heart cannot properly support this weight, for honor instead acts like an accelerant further igniting sinful tendencies to the point that they begin consuming and destroying ones life. The man who desires to cultivate authentic humility, recognizes the dangers and instead seeks to push away and deflect the honor away from his heart and on to his Creator where it belongs. Action. My sons, your flesh desires to be esteemed, honored and made famous…this is common to man and one the most effect tools of Satan. In life, see honor as a potential liability, immediately redirecting it to God and others…for then will you be able to properly handle honor without it destroying the blessed life God intended.