Sunday, 5 November 2017

First Devotional Thoughts Platform (Part Nine)

Lessons from God's Faithfulness (Part Six)
Akin: Goals are absolutely essential to our making a success of/in life. 
Those who cherish a beautiful vision, a lofty ideal in their hearts, will one day realize it. (James Allen) 
Akin: To paraphrase Proverbs 29:18, “When people do not have a plan (end-game, vision, goal) they do just about anything that comes their way, and hence, make a failure of their lives. They dissipate energy, rather than focus it in specific targeted direction(s).”

Akin: Ecclesiastes 3:11 (NLT) tells us, “Yet God has made everything beautiful for its own time. He has planted eternity in the human heart, but even so, people cannot see the whole scope of God’s work from beginning to end.”

Akin: Each person coming into this life has his or her own defined life path. Our paths are probably just as different as our finger prints. It is like, we come with a “chip” loaded with our expected path, in life. Several religions call this destiny. Some call it “star.” Yet others call it “calling.”

Akin: Whatever name you choose to call it really does not matter. The important thing is, there is a beckoning in each of our heart in the direction/line that we are most proficient at.

IC: I recall a conversation I had with a young lady believing God for a partner several years ago. I asked her what she wanted to do in life, after marriage, essentially what her goals were. Her response was quick – whatever her husband wants her to do. Clearly her focus was on marriage and whatever happens thereafter in terms of career would be the product of a joint decision with her husband. While there is nothing particularly wrong with that under normal conditions, the big question is – what if the husband does not come quickly?

IC: We should have personal plans first before “group” plans such that if there is an issue with the “group”, we don’t get into a limbo situation.

Akin: You are right on point, my brother. At the end of the day, we are answerable to God, first for our life. And, no one wants to marry a parasite, anyway. A healthy relationship requires both parties bringing something to the table. Otherwise, one opens him/herself to abuse.

Akin: Some people get to understand their calling early and make a full exploit of it. Some never get to understand, and spend the whole of their life chasing shadows, in frustration and hopelessness. A great many of us stumble one way or the other into it.

Akin: Proverbs 25:2 (NLT) tells us, “It is God’s privilege to conceal things and the king’s privilege to discover them. Are you a king? Are you living the reality of that which Christ has made you? Is the shout of the king in you being heard? Why not, if not? What are you waiting for? The promise says, "seek and you shall find." Are you seeking? [Numbers 23:21; Revelations 1:6, 5:10; Matthew 7:7]

IC: The use of the word “discover” makes it interesting. The dictionary defines it as to “find (something or someone) unexpectedly or in the course of a search”. It implies there has to be an inquisitive mind, there has to be a conscious effort to uncover what may or may not be obvious to the ordinary eye.

IC: Christopher Columbus discovered the “New World” called America and the rest is history. And when you are successful with uncovering it, you have this eureka feeling.
Lack of direction, not lack of time, is the problem. We all have twenty-four hour days. (Zig Ziglar)
Akin: And, even when we begin to discover it, we only know in part. [1 Corinthians 13:9, 12] We grow in knowledge of our set part as we become faithful in the little we know each step of the way.

IC: How do we know we have found our place and calling? Different people have different ways of validating a path, but as Christians, it is important to look at it spiritually and consider answers to these questions among others – Does it negate or align with God’s word? Do I flow naturally in it? Do I have inner peace with the decision? Will the end product give me fulfillment? Could it be leveraged to put smile or sorrow on people’s faces? Ultimately the person making the decision should be the owner of it, and not an external person.
Belief in great results is the driving force, the power behind all great books, plays, scientific discoveries. Belief in success is behind every successful business, church and political organisation. Belief in success is the one basic, absolutely essential ingredient of successful people. Believe, really believe, you can succeed and you will. (David J. Schwartz)
Akin: As parents, it is our duty to provide a solid foundation that enables our children find and own their path, as they grow up.

Akin: Proverbs 22:6 (AMP) reads, “Train up a child in the way he should go [and in keeping with his individual gift or bent], and when he is old he will not depart from it.”

Akin: Just as much as the scriptures employ us to do this for our children, we are supposed to do it for ourselves, also.
Draw near to God and He will draw near to you. (James 4:8a, NKJV)
Akin: GOD WILL NOT DO THIS FOR US. We have to take the first step at it. Then He will come along to help us. He has already given us all we need to take the first step. That is why our skulls did/do not come empty. It is for function, not decoration.
Whatever you move towards tends to move towards you. (Jim Rohn)
Akin: What the Holy Spirit does is come along as our Helper (John 14:16-18; 16:7) to illuminate the truth in/to us one step at a time as we press on. His job is to help, not spoon feed us. We have to have something in our hands for Him to help/work with.
I was learning more with each effort. I was determined. Determination and hard work are as important as talent. (Judy Blume)
IC: God uses the tools in our hands to do the necessary work… Recall Moses’s staff becoming a serpent (Exodus 4:2-3), and in crossing the red sea (Exodus 14:16). So what tool (plan, knowledge, skills, instruments, resources, etc.) do we have in our hands that God can breathe on?
People who won’t take step number one never take step number two. (Zig Ziglar)
Akin: I love the words of Abraham’s servant as he went out to look for a bride for his master’s son.

Akin: And he said, “Blessed be the Lord God of my master Abraham, who has not forsaken His mercy and His truth toward my master. AS FOR ME, BEING ON THE WAY, THE LORD LED ME to the house of my master’s brethren.” (Genesis 24:27, NKJV – emphasis, mine)

Akin: God does not work with lazy, idle people who lack initiative. He wants us to ALWAYS walk in what we already know. He does not speak minute by minute. While waiting on the next word, WE WALK IN ALL HE HAS ALREADY MADE KNOWN. [Deuteronomy 29:29]

Akin: And, the best way to ensure we walk faithfully in that, which has been revealed, is having goals around them.

Akin: The first priority is having a plan, not necessarily a perfect plan. Once you have one you can then tweak as you get more information, more like “a north seeking magnet.”
The person who makes a success of living, is the one who sees his goal steadily and aims for it unswervingly. That is dedication. There is no other way to perfection than dedicated perseverance. (Michael Jackson)
Akin:  Having a plan (goals) helps us to be disciplined. We are able to say yes to the right things, and no to the wrong ones. The things we say no to might not necessarily be evil in themselves. They might just simply be out of line our set goals/plan(s). [1 Corinthians 6:12; 10:23]

Akin: Just because we have a plan does not mean life will yield freely of its fruit to us. There is still work to be done. There is a battle to be won. The advantage of having a plan is the focus it gives to our resources. Rather than dissipate our energy on things that do not matter, our plan makes of us straight, effective and efficient shooters. It gives us a template to fine tune, and measure progress against. Like the old saying goes, “What gets measured gets done.” (Peter Drucker)

Akin: That is all we are able to take this week. We will close out on the goals discuss next week, God willing, with examples of practical goals you might want to adopt.

Akin: Remember, God loves you. Go out and make a positive difference in/to your world. We love you, and we care.

First Devotional Thoughts Platform (Part Eight)
First Devotional Thoughts Platform (Part Ten)
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