Number Your Days

By Linda Tancs

Typically, the expression “your days are numbered” doesn’t connote very good news, signaling that someone will not survive or remain in an advantageous position much longer. The Bible, however, exhorts us to number our days–in other words, to value every moment and learn from it (Psalm 90:12).

Do you go through life on auto pilot, letting life pass you by as you mindlessly go from task to task? Or do you take time to savor the moment? Brother Lawrence, a 17-century Carmelite monk, treasured each moment to the extent that he found profound peace and contentment in tasks as mundane as kitchen work. We should all be so blessed–and we can be–if we just resolve to remember that each day is a gift, specially allotted by God.

***************

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.

A Provocative Question

By Linda Tancs

A religion writer was asked the provocative question why she remains a Christian. She replied that it’s because of Jesus and the stability that He offers (Hebrews 13:8). For me, a query like that is akin to asking me why I breathe. The answer, obviously, is to stay alive. In Him, I live and move and have my being (Acts 17:28). How would you answer the question?

***************

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 Quench the Spirit

By Linda Tancs

So how do you define the Holy Spirit? Many faithful will dutifully answer that the Spirit is the third Person in the Trinity. That’s a good starting point, but it isn’t the whole of it. The Spirit dwells in every believer. As Jesus taught, his ascension to Heaven would result in the sending of the Holy Spirit to teach and guide us (John 16:7). That means that Christ lives in each one of us, more present than He ever was when he lived on earth. The gifting of the Holy Spirit enables us to bear good fruit (Galatians 5:22-23). So it should come as no surprise that the apostle Paul would exhort followers not to quench the Spirit (1 Thessalonians 5:19). Don’t restrain His influence; He desires to do a good work in you.

***************

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.

Out of the Wreckage

By Linda Tancs

All kinds of events can reduce a life to wreckage in one way or another: an earthquake, a job loss, an accident. The wreckage is both tangible (loss of habitat or earnings) and intangible (grief, depression or anxiety). Regardless of the nature of the wreckage, one thing will never change: God is always present (Deuteronomy 31:6). That’s hard to swallow in the midst of turmoil, when the propensity is great to view God as silent or absent. But have you ever noticed the folks who, in the midst of a disaster, reflect a peace that defies understanding? They possess the capacity to be still and let God do His work (Psalm 46:10). Scripture assures us that God delivers the brokenhearted from their troubles (Psalm 34:17-18). His power is perfected in our weakness (2 Corinthians 12:9). Seek Him out in your turmoil, and you’ll find Him (Jeremiah 29:12-13).

***************

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.

Shouldering the Burden

By Linda Tancs

In New York City’s Rockefeller Center, there’s a statue of Atlas, the ancient Greek Titan, holding the world on his shoulders. You might say he has the weight of the world on his shoulders. That sculpture reminds me of Jesus, who truly does hold the whole world in His hands. Isaiah foretold that a Son will be given to us, and the government (the world order) will rest on His shoulders (Isaiah 9:6). Until then, we’re all shouldering burdens of one kind or another but we won’t fall under the weight because the strength He imparts is great (Philippians 4:13).

***************

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.

The Mission Statement

By Linda Tancs

A mission statement is generally a summary of goals or values. Businesses use them, along with vision statements, to explain why they exist. Individuals use them, too, as a means of establishing clarity on goals and objectives. Even Jesus had a mission statement. He told the hometown crowd in Nazareth that he was anointed to preach and heal (Luke 4:18) as was foretold of Him by the prophet Isaiah (Isaiah 61). You have a mission statement, too. After all, Jesus told his followers to go and make disciples of all nations (Matthew 28:19-20). Use that as a foundation to expound further upon your own mission statement.

***************

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.

Practice What You Preach

By Linda Tancs

Do you practice what you preach? In other words, do you behave in the way you ask others to behave? Parents will counsel their children against smoking, drinking, gambling, stealing, hanging out with the wrong people, etc. But do they lead by example? Hopefully, most of the time. But we all have times when we don’t lead by example. Jesus admonished the Pharisees for failing to practice what they preach (Matthew 23:1-4). There’s more to a sermon than just words. As St. Francis of Assisi put it, “Preach always and at times use words.”

***************

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 Blame the Wrong Thing

By Linda Tancs

You might have heard someone in your family exclaim, “What is this world coming to?” Actually, the world isn’t coming to anything. It’s the behavior of people in the world that drives the course of history. There is nothing inherently wrong with the world. Considering that the problem lies with the actions of people comprising the world, it’s also worthwhile to remember that people aren’t “bad”; behaviors are bad. It’s a distinction we often ignore when dealing with others and sometimes even with ourselves. King David understood the distinction and resolved to make things right in himself (Psalm 139:23-24). You can, too. Whatever may be broken in our world we can change, one behavior at a time.

***************

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.

Sifting Through

By Linda Tancs

It’s not surprising that wheat is mentioned so often in the Bible. After all, it’s one of the sacred species (Deuteronomy 8:8). Wheat is obtained through sifting, a vigorous shaking process that separates the chaff from the kernel. In other words, the valuable part is harvested from the rest through a process of disruption. Chances are, there are a few things in your life that need to be shaken up to get at what’s truly valuable. Something is holding you back. Maybe it’s a weakness, but it could also be an overestimation of a skill or talent (Proverbs 16:18). Sift through it.

***************

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.

Ignore the Critics

By Linda Tancs

At any point in life you’ll encounter, or have encountered, one or more folks who are more than happy to tell you what you can’t do and what you’ll never be. Ignore the critics. In God’s eyes, you’re a mighty hero (Judges 6:12). God has set you apart from the low expectations of others. That kind of behavior is often motivated by fear. You’re trying to do things that so many other people are afraid to do. And when people can’t get themselves to do something, they criticize other people who do. Stay focused on God’s opinion of you. Keep calm and carry on.

***************

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.