Tag Archives: avoiding bad decisions

Including God in Everyday Living

While sitting with Jesus yesterday, we began to talk about the importance of trust. He and I talk about this often, probably because I desperately need to be reminded of it every single day. And I do want to include God in everything; I’ll take the path He leads me down over over the crooked mess I can make of my life by leaning on myself every day of the week.

Proverbs 3:5-6 reveals a ton about the nature and character of God. As we see in our dissection of verse 5 in yesterday’s post (“Trust in God with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding”), leaning on our own reasoning alone really isn’t a wise thing to do. More importantly, we also see that God truly is interested in the details of our lives. Because He is asking that we depend on Him and include Him in every part of our hearts (the core of our being), He goes on to attach a promise in verse 6:

“…in all your ways acknowledge Him, and He will make your paths straight.” Proverbs 3:6

 Just as we did with verse 5 yesterday, we will break down this line of scripture word by word:

“…in all (in everything) your (personalized, individual responsibility) ways (decisions, courses of life, methods, manners, processes, plans, habits) acknowledge Him (recognize, include, and seek God) AND He will (God promises to) make (create, shape, alter) your (He is talking to YOU) paths (decisions, circumstances to decisions, direction of life, priorities, focus) straight (to be pure, just, proper, and honest).”

Also interpreted as….

“In every area of my life, including my plans concerning my present and my future, my habits in the way I spend my time, and my decisions, I will include God. By doing so, He is going to alter my very life circumstances to be right, in order, and incredibly fruitful.”

Wow. When you really dive into this scripture, you can begin seeing why including God is so important. Not only does He want to be involved; we actually need Him to be involved. We can’t make our paths straight; only He can. For me, this verse has been an extraordinary epiphany by revealing when and how I think I should include Jesus in my life.

What I find most interesting about this piece of truth is that it completely (not partially, but fully) rejects our modern approach to Christianity. In our fast paced world, even those with heart-felt devotion to Christ can find it easy to merely include God on Sunday, but then live for themselves the rest of the week.  Monday is when we return to work, and mixing Jesus and work can be complicated. We start thinking that we can handle our jobs, and that we only need to include God in the more “spiritual” areas in our lives.

Yet God cannot be compartmentalized, beloved. When we apply scripture to our lives (through His grace), we can no longer divide our load between what God controls and what we control. Because He is God, He needs to be treated like God. He deserves everything that we can give Him. After we surrender our life circumstances to Him first, and then we can see how our decisions will best be handled.

Such a mindset is really the manifestation of the statement “Jesus is my Lord.” Jesus is more than the Savior that died on a cross; He is a leader and a guide for every aspect of our lives. By willingly choosing to include Him every single day, we come to truly recognize Jesus as Lord. As you seek Him, beloved, you will always find Him. Always.

May your heart be encouraged and challenged to include this Righteous King into your everyday world.
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The Gateway to a Successful Life

Among the many colorful episodes in the life of King Solomon, one that always stands out to me is his unusual (yet clever) response when the Lord of all creation poses this request: “Ask for whatever you want Me to give you.”

God is impressed when Solomon responds: “Give me wisdom and knowledge, that I may lead this people, for who is able to govern this great people of yours?” In fact, the king’s response evokes deep satisfaction within the heart of his Maker.

I want this. I desire to impress the heart of my Maker.

One afternoon, I was sitting with a hot mug of coffee balanced perfectly between my knees. My journal and Bible were resting in my two hands. Then the God of the Universe burst into my ordinary room and asked me, “What do you want My child? Tell Me and I will be faithful to grant it.”

To which I audibly responded, “Am I hearing You correctly, Lord? Did You seriously just tell me to ask You for anything, and You will grant it?” My head was absolutely spinning. If I asked for the money to pay off the debt I had, then I could be hilariously generous to others! Or I could ask for a new job, since I was so tired of mine. Like a kid in a candy shop, I was in absolute disbelief. The King of kings and Lord of lords just asked me to tell Him what I want AND he was going to grant it.

For no other reason than His amazing grace, I quickly realized the magnitude of this question. With the understanding that this moment was too rare and holy to be wasted, I quickly had to formulate a response. Then I remembered Solomon’s request, and an earlier time when I had whispered to God that I too wanted to move His heart. Here was my opportunity to emulate King Solomon’s response, and I certainly wanted to impress the Lord.

“Lord, I know what I want. I want wisdom. Will you grant me a supernatural measure of wisdom? Wisdom that is beyond my years? A wisdom that will guide me in making decisions that will glorify You? Teach me to be like You.”

His wisdom led me to years of Christian counseling and the Biblical finance courses that (after years of diligent downsizing) helped pay off thousands of dollars in debt. His wisdom led me to leave a life of mediocrity (or “responsible” and “safe” in the world’s eyes) behind. Instead, King Jesus led me overseas in faith to partner in life-changing missions work that continues to bear fruit today.

Wisdom has kept me from making several poor decisions and investing in unhealthy friendships. Together with obedience to God’s Word, wisdom led me to refuse any unexceptional relationships and prompted me to reevaluate what God (and I) would want in a future mate. Keith then met my (very high) God-given standards and possessed the qualities that I desired in a husband. Through the wise advice given to us in pre-marital counseling, we also learned to never put ministry before our marriage. That’s right: ministry NEVER goes before marriage, which has greatly protected our union. 

“For the protection of wisdom is like the protection of money, and the advantage of knowledge is that wisdom preserves the life of him who has it.” Ecclesiastes 7:12

Wisdom is what leads us to success, beloved. Wisdom grants us long life by guiding us to make the best decisions.

In the quiet of the morning, with my knees pressed down on a fluffy mat as a buffer from the cold concrete floor of our loft, I petitioned God to grant us more and more wisdom.

“If any of you lacks wisdom, let him ask God, who gives generously to all without reproach, and it will be given him.” James 1:5

Beloved, His wisdom IS the answer to all your questions, problems, and struggles. Wisdom will make you prosper. Wisdom will give you success. Wisdom will keep you from danger. Wisdom will help you resolve conflict and establish strong boundaries.

“The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom, and knowledge of the Holy One is understanding.For through wisdom your days will be many, and years will be added to your life.If you are wise, your wisdom will reward you; if you are a mocker, you alone will suffer.” Proverbs 9:10-11

Let me challenge you in this, beloved. If you really want to be Christ-like, to think like Him, behave like Him, and experience life like He wants you to, then wisdom is the best way to start. Wisdom will guide you to love when you want to hate, because wisdom is the beginning of fearing the Lord (in a reverential manner). If you fear Him, you obey Him. And to obey Him is to love Him. And when we love Him, we love others. It’s crazy to think how much all of that points back to wisdom.

“Listen to my instruction and be wise; do not disregard it.Blessed are those who listen to me,  watching daily at my doors, waiting at my doorway.For those who find me find life and receive favor from the Lord.But those who fail to find me harm themselves; all who hate me love death.” Proverbs 8:33-36

May you be encouraged by this post today beloved. See that God has already provided you with an incredible tool to grow in stature and mature in His ways. That tool is the book of Proverbs. Read it, chew it, ponder it, digest it, re-read it, and ask Him to grant you wisdom to honor Him with your life. It’s the absolute best thing you could ever ask the Living God for during the years of your earthly life!

Thank you for choosing His Daily Dose. Click HERE  to become a subscriber to receive daily, encouraging posts sent straight to your inbox each morning.

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The Big Question

God's wisdom - the Big question

Among the many colorful episodes in the life of King Solomon, one that always stands out to me is his unusual (yet clever) response when the Lord of all creation poses this request: “Ask for whatever you want Me to give you.”

God is impressed when Solomon responds: “Give me wisdom and knowledge, that I may lead this people, for who is able to govern this great people of yours?” In fact, the king’s response evokes deep satisfaction within the heart of his Maker.

I want this. I desire to impress the heart of my Maker.

One afternoon, I was sitting with a hot mug of coffee balanced perfectly between my knees. My journal and Bible were resting in my two hands. Then the God of the Universe burst into my ordinary room and asked me, “What do you want My child? Tell Me and I will be faithful to grant it.”

To which I audibly responded, “Am I hearing You correctly, Lord? Did You seriously just tell me to ask You for anything, and You will grant it?” My head was absolutely spinning. If I asked for the money to pay off the debt I had, then I could be hilariously generous to others! Or I could ask for a new job, since I was so tired of mine. Like a kid in a candy shop, I was in absolute disbelief. The King of kings and Lord of lords just asked me to tell Him what I want AND he was going to grant it.

For no other reason than His amazing grace, I quickly realized the magnitude of this question. With the understanding that this moment was too rare and holy to be wasted, I quickly had to formulate a response. Then I remembered Solomon’s request, and an earlier time when I had whispered to God that I too wanted to move His heart. Here was my opportunity to emulate King Solomon’s response, and I certainly wanted to impress the Lord.

“Lord, I know what I want. I want wisdom. Will you grant me a supernatural measure of wisdom? Wisdom that is beyond my years? A wisdom that will guide me in making decisions that will glorify You? Teach me to be like You.”

And He was so faithful to grant me this wisdom! His wisdom led me to years of Christian counseling and the Biblical finance courses that (after years of diligent downsizing) helped pay off thousands of dollars in debt. His wisdom led me to leave a life of mediocrity (or “responsible” and “safe” in the world’s eyes) behind. Instead, King Jesus led me overseas in faith to partner in life-changing missions work that continues to bear fruit today.

Wisdom has kept me from making several poor decisions and investing in unhealthy friendships. Together with obedience to God’s Word, wisdom led me to refuse any unexceptional relationships and prompted me to reevaluate what God (and I) would want in a future mate. Keith then met my (very high) God-given standards and possessed the qualities that I desired in a husband. Through the wise advice given to us in pre-marital counseling, we also learned to never put ministry before our marriage. That’s right: ministry NEVER goes before marriage, which has greatly protected our union. 

With His wisdom, God is included in every financial (and really just every) decision, and we also strive to be debt-free. Wisdom has guided both Keith and I to give generously. To this day, wisdom keeps us from incurring more debt simply by avoiding upgrades – upgrading our used cars, leaving our small loft, or exchanging our old furniture for newer, bigger, and higher cost items that may enslave us to a lender.

“For the protection of wisdom is like the protection of money, and the advantage of knowledge is that wisdom preserves the life of him who has it.” Ecclesiastes 7:12

Wisdom is what leads us to success, beloved. Wisdom grants us long life by guiding us to make the best decisions.

In the quiet of this New Year’s morning, with my knees pressed down on a fluffy mat as a buffer from the cold concrete floor of our loft, I petitioned God to grant us more and more wisdom.

“If any of you lacks wisdom, let him ask God, who gives generously to all without reproach, and it will be given him.” James 1:5

Beloved, His wisdom IS the answer to all your questions, problems, and struggles. Wisdom will make you prosper. Wisdom will give you success. Wisdom will keep you from danger. Wisdom will help you resolve conflict and establish strong boundaries.

“The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom, and knowledge of the Holy One is understanding.For through wisdomyour days will be many, and years will be added to your life.If you are wise, your wisdom will reward you; if you are a mocker, you alone will suffer.” Proverbs 9:10-12

  • If you have money issues today and you want to be debt-free or save more money, ask the Lord for wisdom.
  • If you are having relational issues in your marriage or with a family member and want to be released from the tension it’s causing in your life, ask for wisdom.
    • If you need to lose weight or you’re facing a major physical issue and you don’t know how to do your part, ask for wisdom.
    • If you are a business owner or leader and you have some very pressing decisions to make with no viable option in sight, ask the Lord for wisdom.
  • If you need to place emotional boundaries with your friends or even physical boundaries with a boyfriend or girlfriend, ask the Lord for wisdom. He will be abundantly faithful to give you what is needed.

Let me challenge you in this, beloved. If you really want to be Christ-like, to think like Him, behave like Him, and experience life like He wants you to, then wisdom is the best way to start. Wisdom will guide you to love when you want to hate, because wisdom is the beginning of fearing the Lord (in a reverential manner). If you fear Him, you obey Him. And to obey Him is to love Him. And when we love Him, we love others. It’s crazy to think how much all of that points back to wisdom.

“Listen to my instruction and be wise; do not disregard it.Blessed are those who listen to me,  watching daily at my doors, waiting at my doorway.For those who find me find life and receive favor from the Lord.But those who fail to find me harm themselves; all who hate me love death.” Proverbs 8:33-36

May you be encouraged by this post today beloved. See that God has already provided you with an incredible tool to grow in stature and mature in His ways. That tool is the book of Proverbs. Read it, chew it, ponder it, digest it, re-read it, and ask Him to grant you wisdom to honor Him with your life. It’s the absolute best thing you could ever ask the Living God for during the years of your earthly life!

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