Discipline Brings Dividends

By Linda Tancs

Do you consider yourself a disciplined person? Do you watch what you eat? Exercise? Mind your manners? As any fitness guru will tell you, discipline brings dividends. Even the apostle Paul exhorted his followers to be disciplined (1 Corinthians 9:27). Self-control is a form of discipline, and it honors God. After all, it’s referred to as a fruit of the Spirit (Galatians 5:22-23). In what areas can you practice better self-control?

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As part of FOOT FORWARD MINISTRIES (a teaching and speaking ministry), Go Forward in Faith represents faith-based meditations for personal and professional growth. Follow us on Twitter @moveonfaith.

Love Thy Neighbor

By Linda Tancs

Love is the greatest commandment, love of God being first and foremost, followed by love of neighbor (Matthew 22:36-40). Indeed, to love others is to love God because God is love (1 John 4:16). In its grandest sense, love of neighbor means to love everyone. Admittedly, though, it’s challenging to conjure affection for everyone, everywhere. A good first step is to recognize the connection with all of them as brothers and sisters in Christ. You can foster a connection locally through participation in community outreach and internationally through world missions. Whatever you do, it puts “love thy neighbor” within reach.

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As part of FOOT FORWARD MINISTRIES (a teaching and speaking ministry), Go Forward in Faith represents faith-based meditations for personal and professional growth. Follow us on Twitter @moveonfaith.

Don’t Look Back

By Linda Tancs

You may recall the story of Lot’s wife in the Book of Genesis. She turned into a pillar of salt for looking back to see the destruction of Sodom and Gomorrah as she and her family were fleeing according to an angel’s instruction (Genesis 19:1-26). You may look back on things and, unlike Lot’s wife, you won’t end up a pillar of salt. But you may end up with less than you could’ve had if you’d keep your focus forward. Consider a professional runner who looks behind to check on the competition and ends up running from a certain gold medal to a bronze one instead. Looking behind may slow you down. Like a popular adage reminds us, the reason why a car’s windshield is so much bigger than the rear-view mirror is because you should be focusing on what’s ahead and not on what lies behind.

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As part of FOOT FORWARD MINISTRIES (a teaching and speaking ministry), Go Forward in Faith represents faith-based meditations for personal and professional growth. Follow us on Twitter @moveonfaith.

When Looks are Deceiving

By Linda Tancs

The spotted lanternfly is an invasive planthopper that causes serious damage including oozing sap, wilting, leaf curling and dieback in trees, vines, crops and many other types of plants. Arguably, it’s a very attractive insect, which is why it’s so disheartening that something so pretty could be such a destructive nuisance. Looks are, indeed, sometimes deceiving. Insects like the lanternfly remind me of the Bible’s warnings against deception. We’re warned, for instance, that it’s foolhardy to think that bad company doesn’t rub off on us (1 Corinthians 15:33) or to think that we won’t reap what we sow (Galatians 6:7) or that empty words will yield fruit (Ephesians 5:6). The key to avoiding deception is discernment (John 7:24).

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As part of FOOT FORWARD MINISTRIES (a teaching and speaking ministry), Go Forward in Faith represents faith-based meditations for personal and professional growth. Follow us on Twitter @moveonfaith and join the Facebook group @goforwardinfaith.

Just the Facts

By Linda Tancs

The Book of Lamentations is attributed to the prophet Jeremiah, a collection of reflections on the destruction of Jerusalem in 586 B.C. It’s a gut-wrenching account of the fall of God’s people Israel. Yet in chapter 3 Jeremiah declares that, ultimately, God does not fail (Lamentations 3:21-23). That reflection is a good reminder to focus on facts, not feelings. Feelings are unpredictable, and they lie. Don’t be guided by your feelings. All of God’s promises are facts. When life disappoints, focus on the facts.

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As part of FOOT FORWARD MINISTRIES, Go Forward in Faith represents faith-based meditations for personal and professional growth. Follow us on Twitter @moveonfaith and join the Facebook group @goforwardinfaith.

The Original Wireless Connection

By Linda Tancs

As of January 2021, nearly 60 percent of the global population were active internet users. Of this total, over 92 percent accessed the internet via mobile devices that are heavily dependent on Wi-Fi. Another statistic shows that a person averages nearly eight hours per day on devices. Can you survive without a Wi-Fi connection? You might think you can’t, at least technologically speaking. But the original wireless connection is God. The connection is always stable, safe, secure—and free! And, no device is necessary. Now there’s a connection worth using.

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As part of FOOT FORWARD MINISTRIES, Go Forward in Faith represents faith-based meditations for personal and professional growth. Follow us on Twitter @moveonfaith and join the Facebook group @goforwardinfaith.

Covering and Atoning

By Linda Tancs

When we read the Bible’s exhortation that love covers a multitude of sins (1 Peter 4:8), we often think of it in terms of forgiving others for their transgressions. But the “cover” has another implication that frequently is overlooked. When we love, we atone for our own sins, our own shortcomings. Jesus reminded us, after all, that love is the greatest commandment (Matthew 22:36-40). Whoever does not love does not know God (1 John 4:8).

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As part of FOOT FORWARD MINISTRIES, Go Forward in Faith represents faith-based meditations for personal and professional growth. Follow us on Twitter @moveonfaith and join the Facebook group @goforwardinfaith.

Fear and Courage

By Linda Tancs

Our common sense is apt to think of courage as the opposite of fear. But, spiritually speaking, the opposite of fear is love. As evangelist F.B. Meyer put it, “God incarnate is the end of fear.” In the apostle John’s epistle, he wrote that perfect love casts out fear (1 John 4:18). The perfect love of God casts out all fear and assures us of everlasting life through belief in Jesus Christ.

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As part of FOOT FORWARD MINISTRIES, Go Forward in Faith represents faith-based meditations for personal and professional growth. Follow us on Twitter @moveonfaith and join the Facebook group @goforwardinfaith.

Give It a Year

By Linda Tancs

Jesus told his followers a parable about a fig tree that hadn’t yielded any fruit for years. The owner of the garden wanted the tree cut down, but the gardener asked for one more year to make it fruitful (Luke 13:6-9). How many times have you given a situation one year to change? It’s a popular marker. An aspiring entertainer gives his or her career one year to show promise. A worker gives a new job one year before evaluating the situation. Someone may move to a new locale and not like it right away but wait one year before deciding whether to move on. What are you willing to do while you “give it a year”?

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As part of FOOT FORWARD MINISTRIES, Go Forward in Faith represents faith-based meditations for personal and professional growth. Follow us on Twitter @moveonfaith and join the Facebook group @goforwardinfaith.

Out With the Old

By Linda Tancs

Remember the old expression, “Out with the old, in with the new.” We’re used to shedding old things. We give old clothes away to make room for new ones. We shed old habits and (hopefully) develop new, better ones. We buy newer cars. The same concept applies in the spiritual realm. As Jesus said, you don’t pour new wine into old wineskins (Mark 2:22). Indeed, there is nothing in our old nature worth salvaging once we become new creations in Christ (2 Corinthians 5:17). Use the advent of a new year to renew yourself!

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As part of FOOT FORWARD MINISTRIES, Go Forward in Faith represents faith-based meditations for personal and professional growth. Follow us on Twitter @moveonfaith and join the Facebook group @goforwardinfaith.