Friday, October 26, 2012

Fall Back Into Faith Fridays - Part 7 Fortune

Well friends, we're half way through our Fall Back Into Faith study.  We have covered faith and family and now we're moving on to fortune.  If faith is our foundation, and family is our cornerstone, fortune is essentially what we do.  By fortune, I mean what we do to make money and what we do with our money. 

So over the course of the next three weeks we will focus on three areas God instructs us: Do What God Has Called You/Gifted You To Do and Acknowledge It Comes From Him; Work Hard and In a Manner Reflecting Him; and, Be Generous With What God Has Given You

Today is a hard topic for me to tackle.  Sometimes we work at a job because it pays the bills but not because we feel "called" to work there.  While we certainly should not work somewhere that God clearly does not want us to work, we also need to realize that we may have been placed in the position we are in because God has a very specific purpose for us to impact the lives of those we encounter. 

Pray about where you need to be, where God is calling you, but simultaneously pray over where you are today.  The steps you take and the paths you cross are ordained by God to do a work for His kingdom.  You can be a positive force where you sit today.  I constantly catch myself trying to figure out what my life, and my family's life, will look like two, five, ten years from now.  I make these plans and forget to include God. 

If you are a planner, you may be able to identify.  What if instead of looking ten years out we did this:  (1) pray that God would direct our paths today and in the days to come so that we could follow where He leads, and then (2) look at the next ten HOURS instead.  What does God have for me today?  How can I be a blessing?  How can I work to best reflect HIM?

We are told from the beginning to the end of the Bible that God has prepared us to do good work and he will establish the work of our hands, but we must at all times acknowledge that it is He at work in us.  Ephesians 2 says, "For we are God’s handiwork, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do," and Jeremiah 29 shares, "'For I know the plans I have for you,' declares the LORD, 'plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future. Then you will call on me and come and pray to me, and I will listen to you. You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart. I will be found by you…'"

The plans should be God's.  We have to spend time listening so we can participate in His work.  Then, remember that all we have comes from God and the work, and relative wealth it creates, is ultimately His.  Deuteronomy 8 cautions,  "Beware that you do not forget the LORD your God by not keeping His commandments, His judgments, and His statutes which I command you today, lest—when you have eaten and are full, and have built beautiful houses and dwell in them; and when your herds and your flocks multiply, and your silver and your gold are multiplied, and all that you have is multiplied; when your heart is lifted up, and you forget the LORD your God who brought you out of the land of Egypt, from the house of bondage; who led you through that great and terrible wilderness, in which were fiery serpents and scorpions and thirsty land where there was no water; who brought water for you out of the flinty rock; who fed you in the wilderness with manna, which your fathers did not know, that He might humble you and that He might test you, to do you good in the end— then you say in your heart, ‘My power and the might of my hand have gained me this wealth.  And you shall remember the LORD your God, for it is He who gives you power to get wealth, that He may establish His covenant which He swore to your fathers, as it is this day."
My prayer for me, and for you, today is that of David's in Psalm 90:

May the favor of the Lord our God rest on us;
establish the work of our hands for us—
yes, establish the work of our hands.
Further Reading:  Deuteronomy 8; Psalm 90; Colossians 3; Deuteronomy 30

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