Many Christians feel like oddballs in their local churches, confused why serving God holds such little joy or passion. Not fulfilling. Just frustrating. I get it. Let me explain.
I hold as my single claim to fame the day I danced for the judges at the Grand Ole Opry in Nashville, Tennessee. But I’ll be honest: I never intended to dance. I auditioned as a guitar player, yet when the judges called me back the next day, they asked me to dance as well! Bad idea.
End of audition. I immediately lost the job. Why? They misplaced me.
You know where else I see dancing guitarists? The church.
I love to save money by buying used books, because I read a lot. But if the book is one I plan to highlight a lot, I pony up and get the Kindle e-book. Here’s why you should too.
While reading an e-book I like to highlight key quotes or passages, add my own notes, and even share some of that content on social media. My Kindle reader on my iPad mini allows all of that. Pretty sweet.
While these features are nice, they aren’t compelling enough to fork over the price of an e-book (even though most are only about $9).
But one additional reason makes it totally worth it—especially when highlighting your Bible.
The connection between between the first steps we take in making a decision and its final outcome often seems unrelated. Walking the path of wisdom or the way of foolishness has domino effects far greater than we can imagine.
For us, a disciplined intake of Scripture certainly promises wisdom. But wisdom offers a course of action, not just a course of instruction.
The book of Proverbs reveals the outcome of the pathways we are walking. And it tells us how to stay on the path of wisdom.
If you’re like me, you’ve noticed something is always breaking or needing upkeep around your house. I have to confess it’s been a doozy of a couple of weeks. Oh, man.
Stuff wears out. Off the top of my head, here are a few samples from the last two weeks (no kidding):
- I replaced our clothes washer motor.
- My car needed new tires.
- A sprinkler head broke.
- Our mailbox stand needs replacing, so I’m building a new one.
- Our mower needed a new “hood.”
- I replaced the septic tank’s electric pump.
I’ll just stop there. Who knows what’s next? I’m convinced the constant breakdowns and home repairs in our lives are really designed to repair something else.
These are intended for a bigger repair.
I’ve had a number of people tell me they’ve heard my tour to the Holy Land this fall is full. If you’ve wondered if there’s still room for you, I have good news.
(Explaining the Second Coming of Jesus on On the Mount of Olives overlooking the Temple Mount)
We still have space on our tour, but I urge you to reserve your place today. Why? Because this is no ordinary tour to Israel.
This will be an exclusive, one-bus tour devoted entirely to following the life of Jesus . . . from His birth in Bethlehem . . . to His ministry in Galilee . . . to His death and resurrection in Jerusalem . . . and His ascension from the Mount of Olives.
“Wayne Stiles has a unique gift for bringing the biblical world into our own. Some teachers are history gurus, but they can’t translate their research into how it affects us today. Wayne is superb at doing this in his books, on his blog, and at the sites. He is passionate, accurate, and faithful.
I’d encourage you to take the opportunity while you can.”
—Dr. Todd Bolen
Learn the life of Jesus by walking where He walked.
On this tour, I will help you understand the life of our Lord as we connect the Bible and its lands to your life every time we stop—and all along the way.
My prayers don’t go far enough. Maybe your prayers need some stretching too. Often our prayers begin and end with asking God to change the way things are around us.
Our prayers have a familiar pattern:
- “Provide enough money this month”
- “Protect us as we travel”
- “Heal my friend from pain”
These are fine prayers, and all legitimate, but incomplete. They just don’t go far enough.
Jesus’ prayer in Gethsemane helps us stretch our prayers past our pain.
God’s design for a tree includes winter as much as summer. In fact, the dormant season remains essential for a tree’s growth. In a way, we are very similar to a tree.
(Photo: By zause01. Own work, CC BY-SA 3.0, via Wikimedia Commons)
God has gifted each Christian for a purpose. But like a tree, our gifts have seasons—and sometimes certain gifts may lie dormant for a time—untapped.
In my last post, I offered 3 perspectives to consider when you aren’t being used to your full potential. Here they are:
- Remember who your gifts are for—the church, not you.
- Seek fulfillment in faithfulness rather than in the exercise of your gifts.
- Refuse to get your identify from your gifts. See yourself as God’s servant.
In this post, we’ll add 3 more to the list—including one truth that has set me free when it seems my potential is untapped.
You are gifted. God has made you unique and given you a number of natural abilities and spiritual gifts “for the common good” (1 Cor. 12:7). There’s just one problem.
You feel you have much more to offer than your situation allows you to contribute. Am I right?
Honestly, I think most of us—all of us—find ourselves not utilized as much as we could be. In fact, the Bible shows 3 reasons your full potential isn’t being tapped.
(And why that’s a good thing.)
While waiting to have lunch with a friend last week in Franklin, TN, I sat at the local Starbucks to do some work. At 9:30 in the morning, the place was packed.
(Photo: Starbucks in Franklin, Tennessee)
The busy coffee shop had a small footprint, so I sat at the only available place —a wide table by the door. Usually I work at Starbucks with my earbuds plugged in, but I forgot them. So I heard every conversation at the table.
In the two hours I sat there, I overheard 6 different conversations.
I’m glad I did.
If you’re like me, you love to read good books. There’s the Bible, of course. But there are many other books God has used to help us. In fact, books have taught us some of life’s best lessons.
Take 60 seconds and click here to tell me what five (5) books have helped you most (other than the Bible).
- You could include good books that have helped you personally, professionally, or spiritually.
- Try to keep your list to five books or less.
In an upcoming post, I’ll summarize your lists (and include my own list of five good books) in order to form a “Must-Read” recommended reading list.