Quote of the Day

“Fear is nothing compared to the chance of creating something beautiful.”—Valentina Solfrini, Artful Blogging, Fall 2017, p. 47

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Earning a Living to Serving a Purpose

In what way, can you balance the secular business world and that of your Christian beliefs? Do you have to choose? As adults, we can often feel torn between what is accepted and popular in our culture that can often contradict with our Christian beliefs.

In today’s business world, we often led by bottom line pressures. According to Larry Julian, author of God is My CEO: Following God’s Principles in a Bottom Line World, we do have a choice.

The pressure that Godly leaders feel strengthens them, helps them prioritize principles, defines their character, and helps determine their legacy as leaders, wrote Julian.

There is a difference between earning a living and serving a purpose. So, it is important to find God’s calling and your purpose as a leader. Our purpose can drive everything, from what we do, to how we do it, and for whom we work. Over time, Julian noted, our mission and purpose take precedence over profitability.

In his book, God is my CEO: Following God’s Principles in a Bottom Lined World, Larry Julian outlined ideas that he refers as “God’s principles.”

In time, states Julian, we can move from success to significance.

“Hope the future.”–Jeremiah 29:11

Let’s start…how do you define success?

Source:

God is my CEO: Following God’s Principles in a Bottom Lined World, Larry Julian. Adams Media Corp., Holbrook, MA copyright 2001.

Create a little each day

Floral.oilpastel.872017Oil Pastel, August 7, 2017 ©Paula Baines

It is not a matter of making time, it is why you make the time.  I had excuses for not being creative. I was not inspired, I was tired, I had housework, or other commitments.  When you really look at your life-you either make time for what is important to you, or other things are allowed to take that space. I got tired of being tired. So I started taking time to be creative.  I would try to make a new dessert, sketch a flower, get my camera out and take a photo, or jot down ideas for my next blog. The first step is the hardest sometimes.

Try this, for the first week, set aside just 15 minutes a day, find a way to create. It could be a poem, a short story, simple, a few minutes to add stitches to a blanket that you are crocheting or knitting. Each week, thereafter, add five minutes more. Find a way to create something each day. I was surprised that little time could inspire me to do more.

“Do what you can, with what you have . where you are.”–Theodore Roosevelt

Share with us on our FB page, what has inspired you.

 

 

Quote of the Day

We offer our strengths and weaknesses, our joys and our sorrows to your never ending care. Help us to remember all through our lives that we never need to do difficult things alone, that Your Presence is presently for asking and our ultimate future is assured by your unselfish love. In our deepest gratitude we offer this prayer. Amen.—Fred Rogers, Invocation, Boston University, 1992.

Prophecy–What does that mean?

What is a prophet?

Many people think of a prophet as a fortune teller; someone that predicts that future. I came to find out that predicting the future was a small part of a prophet’s job. Through my research and study, I found that prophets from the Christian Bible talked more about the present and finding the right way back to God.

Who were the prophets?

According to the website, www.theologyofwork.org Introduction of Prophets-

Called by God and filled with God’s Spirit, a prophet spoke God’s word to the people who had in one way or another distanced themselves from God. In one sense, a prophet is a preacher. But in marketplace terms, a prophet is often a whistle blower, particularly when an entire tribe or nation has turned away from God.

Do you think prophets exist today? Where would we find them? Could we use them?

Prophets of the Old Testament wrote and spoke of John the Baptist and Jesus of Nazareth. John was connected to Elijah in the Gospel of Luke. That John the Baptist fulfilled Malachi’s prophecy of being a forerunner to Jesus. John baptized people in the Jordan River, the same place as Elijah did his work, and similarities did not end there. John the Baptist’s lifestyle was also similar to Elijah’s.

The Old Testament Scripture of Isaiah, chapter 13 predicts Jesus’s coming. It highlights a man coming to save the people of Isaiah’s contemporaries. “Then the eyes of the blind shall leap like a deer, and the tongue of the speechless sing for joy.” The same theme is repeated in the following Psalm-“The Lord opens the eyes of the blind. The Lord lifts those who are bowed down. The Lord sets the prisoners free. Theme is continued in the Gospel of Matthew.

In the Gospel of Matthew, John the Baptist is in prison. He sends word via his disciples to see if Jesus is the one that they have been waiting for. Jesus answers John. “Go and tell john what you hear and see; the blind receive sight, the lame walk, the lepers cleansed, the deaf hear, the dead are raised, and the poor have good news brought to them. And blessed is anyone who takes no offense to me.”  Jesus then turned to the crowds and started to talk about John the Baptist. He asked what did they expect to see in the wilderness? Someone in soft robes. They would be wrong, as you would only find people dressed like that in royal palaces. John was chosen as messenger. It was prophesied that John would prepare the way of Jesus. John was it.

Did the people that followed Jesus and John the Baptist really understand? Jesus and John knew who they were as people. They knew of each other but had not met. I think John knew that Jesus was the one, and the word sent back confirmed what he knew. By Jesus’ words in the Gospel, he knew John the Baptist and his disciples were the Advance team. But…were their disciples uncertain of the other. Was there a fear of competition?

John the Baptist knew who he was and who he was not. According to the Gospel of John, He was not Christ, not Elijah, and not the prophet, but the voice of one crying in the wilderness. The Gospel of John makes this reference to Isaiah 40:3.

All four of the Gospels make references to prophets of the Old Testament. Prophets played a huge role. Note that, it had been at least four hundred years since a foretelling. John the Baptist was seen as a prophet for the New Testament. He is set apart. Not just by his looks or his lifestyle. He played a large role and baptism was the method that he used in his ministry. John was humble. Perhaps he indeed knew his place. John prepared the people for Jesus; he communicated the importance of Christ. He even baptized Jesus, which inaugerated Jesus’ ministry. John perhaps lived on the fringes. He did not see himself as above. John knew who he was and knew who Jesus was. Is John the Baptist still important today? Indeed he is.

 

 

Why the Rush?

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What happened to slowing down and taking in all that is around us bit by bit? I am tired of the fast-paced world. I want to get off this “merry go-round” of rush, rush, rush, and stop. I recall the days when my sons were toddlers. They took their time to take in all that was around them. They were curious about almost everything. If I tried to move too fast, they got overwhelmed, stalled, and would not budge. I could feel my patience spurting out of me as if I was a sieve. Perhaps, they had the better way to approach life; taking the world in bit by bit.

In our culture’s rush to get and there, we miss out on the need to stay focused. When I slowed down, my sons were less anxious and tense. We can create the atmosphere for our children to explore. My sons are now grown. One is twenty-two years old with another semester of college left. The other just graduated from high school. I am learning to appreciate my surroundings.

I admit my to-do list is trying to take a spot in my head as I write this blog. I am not going to let it take over. I am focusing on the words that I type on this page. Just take a moment, sit still breathe, and look all around you. What do you see that you had not noticed before? Remember, why the rush?!

Magic of Grace

Originally published on 11/14/2013

https://acreativevoicebeckons.wordpress.com/2013/11/14/magic-of-grace/

Seekers are offered clues all the time from the world of the spirit. Ordinary people call these clues coincidences.”—Deepak Chopra.

Per Cheryl Richardson, there are three things that will help you stay on the Life Make Over path: “a partner, successful results, and the magic of grace,” p. 38, Life Make Overs.

“Action creates change,” wrote Richardson. Adding, it is time to stop thinking about the changes and start doing something about it. Who can you partner with to act?

What motivates you? Motivation is the fuel that inspires us to act. I am motivated to self-improvement and help others improve. Therefore, I am working on my coaching certification. A coach is a great way to help you set your goal and steps for you to take to get your goal.

I think I am motivated my daylight. In the last few weeks as the days have shortened, I have fallen backwards in my weight loss. I had maintained a twenty-pound weight loss for quite a few weeks. I have slipped into bad habits. Last month, I began a three-month contract position. Over the last few weeks, I have averaged 35 hours a week. The flexibility that I had prior to this contract position has been curtailed. Since I began this contract, my time to walk outside is limited to first thing in the morning. Unless I walk as early as 7 am, I do not get my walk in at all during the weekdays. Walking outside has been key for me to losing the weight. I prefer walking outside than trudging on the treadmill downstairs. Over the last couple of days, I have walked on the treadmill as a last resort. It was okay not great. I need actual sunshine.
I made up every excuse in the book not to walk outside today, it was too darn cold. So, I sat on the coach and ate my lunch, then after an hour, I was back on the computer for work. Working from home has advantages and disadvantages. I have worked hard over the last months to exercise and eat right. It is 5:15 pm and looks like midnight outside. Ugg! Something must change in my mind before I can change my negative pattern. I do not want to slide into unhealthy eating habits. I pray for help to change.
“The best motivating factor of all, however, is divine intervention, or what I like to call The Magic of Grace,” wrote Richardson.

Have you ever experienced divine intervention? What did it look like for you? I have experienced it in the past but not in a long while.

Perhaps you are waiting to decide about a job or a possible move, you could receive a piece of mail to help make that decision. Or, you are struggling with an issue and a friend has had a similar experience; your friend’s life lesson could help you. These events are a direct result of investing in your life and yourself to care for yourself. Setting time aside for yourself, saying “no” to over-loaded schedule, and saying yes to your goals are key to seeing the value in ourselves. Once we give time to ourselves, the magic of grace (coincidences) seem to happen more often.

“When you take steps to honor yourself…you’ll set in motion a higher order for your life,” wrote Richardson. Richardson advises taking good care of ourselves and wait for the miracles and those miracles will become the very special source of motivation throughout this journey.

Here is this week’s challenge: Pay close attention to coincidences that occur in your life as you make self-care a top priority. Notice when something makes your life easier, or when you receive a gift of kindness from another. Write down these coincidence (miracles of grace).

I suggest to paying attention to your dreams as well. Through my personal experience, God has spoken to me through my dreams. If I am struggling with something in life, I always end up back at my childhood home in my dreams. In my dream, I discover a new door that I had not seen before and open it up. It is almost as if, God wants me to see a new perspective. That perspective provides new information for me to make a choice.
Long time ago, someone I knew referred to coincidences as “God incidences.” Recognizing small miracles of grace in the coincidences, learning to trust yourself and your intuition go hand in hand. God bless, may you experience the miracles of grace.

Resources:
Richardson, Cheryl. Life Make-overs: 52 Practical Ways to Improve Your Life. Broadway Books, New York. ©2000.