Humble Perseverance

By Linda Tancs

A hallmark of perseverance is endurance, or steadfastness. Perseverance is an admirable quality. We’re encouraged to endure in many ways—in doing good (2 Thessalonians 3:13), in accepting the trials of life (James 1:2-4), in prayer (Romans 12:12). So it may seem counterintuitive to think of humility as an aspect of perseverance. But perseverance requires humility to obtain the desired result. Consider a tree that is unable to bend in a hurricane; it may end up uprooted. However, a tree that can yield is likely to survive. Steadfastness can lead to arrogance and, ultimately, a fall if it isn’t coupled with the humility to recognize that our strength and determination is a gift from God and not ours alone. Acknowledge Him for the capacity that He gives you to endure (1 Peter 5:6-7) .

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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.

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.

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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.

The Finishing Work of the Cross

By Linda Tancs

As we celebrate Christ’s resurrection, take a moment to reflect on the cross. What kinds of things brought Jesus to the cross? Anger, mistrust, betrayal of friends, denial, scapegoating, institutional bias and fear, among other things. What brings you to your cross in life? Probably many of the same things. Let the redemptive message of Easter resound in your life. You, too, are an overcomer (1 John 5:4); it is finished (John 19:30).

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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.

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.

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.

I’ve Got Good News

By Linda Tancs

There have no doubt been times in your life when you’ve thought, “I could use some good news.” Maybe you’ve suffered from a physical malady or a dry spell at work or some other life circumstance has you seeking more positivity. We all yearn for a good report. Proverbs, too, reminds us that good news is like cold water to a weary soul (Proverbs 25:25). And, of course, this time of year we rejoice in the proclamation of the angel Gabriel to the shepherds of good tidings of great joy on the birth of Jesus (Luke 2:10). He is the ultimate Good News, both the bearer of the message and the message Himself!

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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.

Small But Mighty

By Linda Tancs

Jesus’s parable concerning the mustard seed (see, e.g., Matthew 13:31–32) explores the theme of growth from small beginnings. Indeed, the choice of a mustard seed is instructive, not necessarily because of its smallness but rather because it results in a tree that reaches a height (and even width) of 20 feet or more. The key to its growth, though, is attention and cultivation. God gives the seed to the sower and expects it to be cultivated. Good things often start small and grow over time, so maintain confidence in His plan for you (Zechariah 4:10). He’s planting seeds of greatness that you may cultivate months, even years, from now.

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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.

Don’t Sit This One Out

By Linda Tancs

We’ll all familiar with sitting things out. It might be on the dance floor. Or the sports field. In one way or another, we opt out of something, or some things, in life. There’s a faith-filled song called “I Hope You Dance” that exhorts us not to sit it out but to dance. As physicist Sir Isaac Newton said, an object in motion stays in motion. Press on and persevere (Philippians 3:14) and God will meet you there (Proverbs 13:4).

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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.

Failing Forward

By Linda Tancs

John Calvin Maxwell is an American author and pastor who has written many books on leadership. He exhorts his readers to “fail forward.” Failing forward means, in essence, to learn from your mistakes. Do you learn from your failings or define yourself by them? Do you break down or break through? (See, e.g., James 1:2-4; Psalm 145:14). How you react to failure is like the difference between being “thrown under the bus” and driving the bus.

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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.