God’s Instruction Manual

By Linda Tancs

Have you ever ignored an instruction manual? Maybe you’ve never bothered to read that appliance manual or assembled something without reading the instructions. Chances are, on at least one occasion, it wasn’t a very good idea. Imagine doing the same with God’s instruction manual, the Bible. Everything you could ever want to know about navigating life is in there, so it’s not a good idea to do without it. In fact, Solomon says that it’s better than silver or gold (Proverbs 8:10), which we know are valuable, precious metals. The wisdom of the Bible is unassailable and unquantifiable (Job 28:15). Read your manual.

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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.

Which Way

By Linda Tancs

Frank Sinatra is known for his rendition of the song My Way. It’s an anthem of self-determination wherein you’ll find the statement, “I did it my way.” It’s easy to fall into a trap of wanting to have things your way. As the old idiom attests, “My way or the highway.” But more often than not, we need to get out of our own way. The Bible instructs us not to lean on our own understanding (Proverbs 3:5). It also reminds us that whoever trusts in his own mind is a fool (Proverbs 28:26). When you seek God’s way of doing things, He directs your path (Proverbs 3:6). You can’t outsmart God. Which way are you going? Your way or His way?

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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.

Priorities

By Linda Tancs

A study once concluded that the average person will spend four times more of life getting dressed than communing with God. We commune with God through prayer, bible study and worship. How much time do you spend with God? Do you let other “priorities” get in the way? Spending time with God is not just a matter of desire but of obedience (Matthew 22:37). When you put God first, it doesn’t go unnoticed (Matthew 6:33). Don’t try to fit God into your schedule; fit your schedule around God.

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

 

 

 

Mind of the Staircase

By Linda Tancs

The French expression “esprit de l’escalier” literally means “mind of the staircase.” It refers to that comeback, response or witty remark that one frustratingly comes up with only when the moment for doing so has passed. No doubt you’ve been there. And, in many cases, it undoubtedly worked out for the best. How many hard feelings may have been averted simply for lacking mastery of the comeback? As Proverbs instructs, life and death are in the power of the tongue (Proverbs 18:21). Don’t be quick to applaud those who are never left without a response. It can be a curse just as easily as a blessing (James 3:9-10).

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

 

 

 

Zero Tolerance

By Linda Tancs

We often hear news reports about zero-tolerance policies, often because they’ve been violated by way of harassment, discrimination, violence or other things. In our own lives, we establish zero-tolerance policies, too. Parents establish zero-tolerance policies with their children around behavioral issues like disobedience, lying and stealing. Spouses establish zero-tolerance policies concerning issues like adultery and abusive behavior. Individually, we resolve (especially around the New Year) to stop tolerating our own proclivities toward indecisiveness, fear, impatience and a host of other attributes.

The Bible encourages a zero-tolerance policy against ungodly thoughts, words and behaviors (Romans 13:14). The best way to enforce the policy is to look for wisdom (Romans 12:2) and perspective (Philippians 4:8) as your anchors.

Does your policy need updating?

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

 

Knowledge or Wisdom

By Linda Tancs

The phrase “knowledge is power” was first attributed to Sir Francis Bacon in the 1500s. There’s nothing wrong with being knowledgeable, but knowledge isn’t always powerful. Sometimes, it’s wrong or even useless. The better phrase is “wisdom is power.” After all, God ordained it a valuable treasure (Proverbs 8:11) and even commands us to acquire it (Proverbs 4:5).

God does grant knowledge (Ecclesiastes 2:26), which is often used in pursuit of worldly endeavors. But wisdom is an ability to see things from the Lord’s perspective, to conduct oneself according to His precepts. Practice wisdom through prayer and discernment and you’ll live a powerful life.

A Brain, a Heart and Courage

By Linda Tancs

In the movie The Wizard of Oz, Dorothy meets up with three characters, each seeking a different attribute. The scarecrow wants a brain. The tin man wants a heart. And the lion wants courage. That’s a pretty good summation of what we need to persevere through life: wisdom, love and courage.

The Bible exhorts us to gain wisdom (see, e.g., James 1:5; Proverbs 3:13-18). How do you do that? By reading the Bible, the source of all God’s knowledge and understanding. Wisdom is a gift from God, the means to discern the truth in all things. We’re told to love wisdom, and wisdom will protect us (Proverbs 4:6-7). Above all, though, we are commanded to love God (Deuteronomy 10:12) and extend that love to our neighbors (Luke 10:27). It’s fair to say that the pursuit of wisdom and love takes courage. It’s so much easier to hide one’s head in the sand, avoiding truth and neglecting the work to build strong relationships. Yet we’re reminded to be strong and of good courage (Deuteronomy 31:6). That’s because fear, insecurity and anxiety undermine the courage we need to foster effective personal and professional relationships. But you’re an overcomer! Stand firm and apply the power formula of wisdom, love and courage to persevere through life’s tasks and struggles.