Tuesday, February 25, 2014

The Fear of Human Opinions Disables...

Criticism is everywhere and will always be. Sometimes criticism can be helpful, but too often it's not. I've come to the conclusion that people are going to criticize you when you do the right thing and people will criticize you when you don't. So that puts us in a difficult spot, right? I don't think so. One of the most liberating things I've learned is that when I do things, my focus shouldn't be to please people. The Message Bible says it perfectly in Proverbs 29:25, "The fear of human opinion disables; trusting in God protects you from that. If the fear of human opinion is my focus, I'll always be fighting a losing battle. But when pleasing the Lord becomes my focus, and not people, I've found I have great liberty and satisfaction. Even though people will continue to criticize me when I make choices that are right, it really doesn't bother me anymore. If what I'm doing clearly lines up with the Bible then I'm good with that. There are many people who do the right thing and are then criticized for it, but they'll tell you that they'd do it all over again because it was the right thing to do. I see many examples of people in the Bible who made choices that were right, even though publicly unpopular, because they knew who they were aiming to please. Can you imagine if people did this? Decisions not being based on the popular opinion or fear of man, but on what was obedient to the Bible and pleasing to the Lord. Today you may have some difficult decisions or choices to make. Let them be based on the Bible and move forward, regardless of what others may think or the criticism you'll recieve. Don't forget, people are going to criticize you regardless. As Seth Godin said, "Criticism will come to those who stand out."

Wednesday, February 19, 2014

Keeping the Main Things the Main Things

Have you ever noticed how easy it can be to focus on things that shouldn't be your main focus? Busyness, pressure and stress is everywhere. The pulls, demands and expectations of life can be overwhelming at times. But when you really think about it, what are the main things that should have our focus? The Bible gives us a very clear answer in Mark 12:30-31, "And you shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, with all your mind, and with all your strength. This is the first commandment. And the second, like it, is this: ‘You shall love your neighbor as yourself.’ There is no other commandment greater than these."If this is the main thing according to the Bible, then it's my responsibility to make it the main thing in my life. Loving God and loving people! I like the ring to it. Now I can take my list of 101 very important priorities and focus on these two. I love simplicity and these verses help me to make life simple. Loving God and loving people allows me to evaluate where I put my time, money, virtue and everything else. You may ask me, "Lee, what are your priorities?" And my answer is simple, "To love God and to love people." :)

Wednesday, February 12, 2014

We've Got It All Wrong...

The motto of our culture is "Take care of yourself." We're encouraged to make every decision based on how it will affect or benefit self. How we look, act, what we say and what we have can always have a self-focus. But when this mindset is compared to the Bible, there's a stark contradiction. John 3:30 lays it out pretty plain and simple, leaving no room for ambiguity or gray areas when it says, "He must become greater and greater, and I must become less and less." It's too easy to forget sometimes that life isn't about us becoming greater and greater. No, it's quite the contrary. It's about us becoming less and less and allowing Jesus to become more and more. This passage can be applied to any area of life, if we'll let it. Realize that today isn't about you! (I'm preaching to the choir now)! In my life today I'm going to make sure that it's not about me, but is all about Him :)