Stewards4Christ

March 29, 2008

“Slowly, steadily, surely…the vision will be fulfilled.”

Filed under: Uncategorized — Michael Wright @ 9:57 am

Do you have vision for your personal life? What about your family? Does your church have a vision for its purpose and existence?

Proverbs 29:18 says, “Where there is no vision, the people perish.” Without God’s people having a vision for reaching the lost in the world around us chaos will exist. This same verse in The Living Bible reads, “Where there is ignorance of God, the people run wild.”

Having a vision is directly correlated with God’s revelation being revealed to a sin darkened world. It is God’s plan that we as His followers have a vision and a mission. We should prayerfully seek God’s will in these areas and once revealed, plan for success in participating with God has He fulfills the vision.

Habakkuk 2:3 in The Living Bible says, “But these things I plan won’t happen right away. Slowly, steadily, surely, the time approaches when the vision will be fulfilled. If it seems slow, do not despair, for these things will surely come to pass. Just be patient! They will not be overdue a single day!” What a great promise to God’s children!

We have completed three years of broadcasting gospel music through the internet (www.holinessmusic.com). God gave Shawna and I a vision for this ministry, and with HIS help, we’ve endeavored to carry out the vision. It has been rewarding to see the vision fulfilled.

In these three years we’ve had listeners listen for over 160,000 total hours. There have been over 145,000 connections made to our internet radio station. On average, each listener listens for 70 minutes at a time. We have record of listeners from more than 30 different countries in the world! Praise the Lord! For less than $100 a month the world is being impacted with sacred music as recorded by musicians in the holiness movement. Isn’t it wonderful what can be done when people are willing to obtain a vision and plan for success?

God has promised to work out His plans for our life (Psalm 138:8). All He needs are willing individuals. We have the resources we need to fulfill God’s plan for our life. In The Word for You Today devotional for March 27, 2008, there is this statement, “Look in the mirror and announce, ‘I am full of resources. God has given me everything I need to fulfill His plan for my life.’ This is not hype, pride, or mind-over-matter. It’s faith speaking, it’s faith connecting with God, it’s faith tapping into the resources needed to do what God has called you to do!”

If you don’t have a vision for your life or for your family, ask God to give you a vision. Once received, stay in tune to God’s plans for your life and “be patient” while God “slowly, steadily, surely” fulfills the vision.

March 24, 2008

2008 Easter Weekend

Filed under: Uncategorized — Michael Wright @ 10:16 pm

Shawna and I along with our girls flew to Pittsburgh, PA to visit our cousins in Salem, OH over Easter weekend.  Here are a few pictures:

March 15, 2008

Are You Planning For Success?

Filed under: Uncategorized — Michael Wright @ 8:55 am

Recently, we had a special series of services at our church with evangelist Rollin Mitchell. Rev. Mitchell is a very good preacher/speaker/story teller. His messages are very practical and something that anyone who desires to have an understanding can grasp. You can find 10 of his messages on my podcast site, www.holinessmusic.com/podcast.xml. One of the messages that was especially good is called “Children of the World are Wiser.” In this message, Rev. Mitchell talks about the importance of us as Christians striving for success and not just striving for it, but planning for it as well.

Success is something that I’ve been praying about during the last several months. I’ve been asking God to help me to be successful in all of the various roles He has called me to fulfill. These roles include husband, father, employee, song-leader, son, son-in-law, brother, brother-in-law, Bible study facilitator, etc.! You see, all of us are living out different roles every day. Are we planning to be successful in those roles, or are we just fluttering through life like a butterfly? I believe God has called us to strive for success – and I believe He wants to make us successful!

Maybe you think that success and humility do not co-exist in the life of a Christian. Well, I want to challenge your thinking a little bit with what the Bible says about success. One of the great things about the Bible is that it is applicable to our everyday life. The Bible has much to say about success and being successful at what we do. Consider these passages of scripture, all taken from the HCSB:

“LORD, God of my master Abraham,” he prayed, “grant me success today, and show kindness to my master Abraham” (Genesis 24:12).

“Today when I came to the spring, I prayed: LORD, God of my master Abraham, if only You will make my journey successful!” (Genesis 24:42).

“The LORD was with Joseph, and he became a successful man, serving in the household of his Egyptian master. When his master saw that the LORD was with him and that the LORD made everything he did successful” (Genesis 39:2-3).

“The warden did not bother with anything under Joseph’s authority, because the LORD was with him, and the LORD made everything that he did successful” (Genesis 39:23).

“Above all, be strong and very courageous to carefully observe the whole instruction My servant Moses commanded you. Do not turn from it to the right or the left, so that you will have success wherever you go. This book of instruction must not depart from your mouth; you are to recite it day and night, so that you may carefully observe everything written in it. For then you will prosper and succeed in whatever you do” (Joshua 1:7-8).

“David marched out with the army, and was successful in everything Saul sent him to do. Saul put him in command of the soldiers, which pleased all the people and Saul’s servants as well” (1 Samuel 18:5).

“Therefore, Saul reassigned David and made him commander over 1,000 men. David led the troops and continued to be successful in all his activities because the LORD was with him. When Saul observed that David was very successful, he dreaded him” (1 Samuel 18:13-14).

“Every time the Philistine commanders came out to fight, David was more successful than all of Saul’s officers. So his name became very famous” (1 Samuel 18:30).

“Be strong and brave, and keep your obligation to the LORD your God to walk in His ways and to keep His statutes, commandments, judgments, and testimonies. This is written in the law of Moses, so that you will have success in everything you do and wherever you turn” (1 Kings 2:2b-3).

“He sought God throughout the lifetime of Zechariah, the teacher of the fear of God. During the time that he sought the LORD, God gave him success” (2 Chronicles 26:5).

“Please, Lord, let Your ear be attentive to the prayer of Your servant and to that of Your servants who delight to revere Your name. Give Your servant success today, and have compassion on him in the presence of this man” (Nehemiah 1:11).

“LORD, save us! LORD, please grant us success!” (Psalms 118:25).

“He stores up success for the upright; He is a shield for those who live with integrity” (Proverbs 2:7).

“The one who understands a matter finds success, and the one who trusts in the LORD will be happy” (Proverbs 16:20).

“The one who acquires good sense loves himself; one who safeguards understanding finds success” (Proverbs 19:8).

“If the axe is dull, and one does not sharpen its edge, then one must exert more strength; however, the advantage of wisdom is that it brings success” (Ecclesiastes 10:10).

One of the reasons that I believe many Christian organizations have grown large through the years is because they have had leaders who planned for success. I believe God wants to help His followers become successful – but His followers have to want success
and I believe plan for success in order to succeed. It is easy for us in our secular roles to strive for success and be successful. Whether it is farming, computer programming, auto mechanics, or being a school teacher, we generally think success is fine and a much needed accomplishment. But, what about the things of God and being a Christian influence on others? In these areas, are we as interested in being successful as we are in our career? May the Lord help us as Christians to focus some of our “success energy” on the things that will last for all of eternity!

Part of planning for success includes making a full surrender to our Lord and Savior. Several of the above quoted scriptures reference the conditions for God granting success. These include keeping His statutes, praying and seeking after God, and trusting in God. We can go overboard on the aspect of trying to be successful – so much so that we do things without even having God’s approval or blessing. However, if God has called you to do something (and everyone is on earth for a purpose), then I believe you have the responsibility of asking God to make you successful and planning for success!

March 8, 2008

It’s ALL About Me…or is it?

Filed under: Uncategorized — Michael Wright @ 12:00 pm

I’ve developed a routine of walking during my lunch break most days that I’m gone to work. When the weather is permissible, my favorite place to walk is a nearby park. When the weather isn’t the greatest, I walk at a mall that is near the office where I work.

This week, I walked by a clothing store in the mall that had a green t-shirt on display. The slogan on the t-shirt read, “It’s ALL About Me.” This statement caught my eye, and it reminded me of how many in our world really do feel and act that way. Have you ever been around someone that thought the world revolved around them? I live with someone who thinks this way…none other than my adorable two-year-old daughter! After all, this is the attitude that every child is born with. We as parents have the huge responsibility of teaching our children that it’s NOT all about me!

While we all recognize that two year old children feel this way, how sad it is that so many adults seem to feel this way as well. Here are just a few examples that come to my mind. I know there are more, and you may think of something not on my list:

  • “I’m done with my wife, so I’ll file for a divorce.”
  • “I want a new car, even though I don’t know how I’ll pay for it, so I’ll finance it.”
  • “I don’t want to go through a pregnancy and carry this baby, so I’ll get an abortion.”
  • “I have the right to wear immodest clothing, it’s my body.”
  • “It’s my money; I can buy whatever I want! I’m the one who earned it!”
  • “It’s my body; I can get a tattoo of some ugly monster if I want.”

It’s ALL about me…or is it?

Why did God create you and allow you to be born into this world? The Bible says we are created in God’s image (Gen. 1:27). Is it really ALL ABOUT ME? I don’t think so. Every day that we are allowed to wake up and smell the coffee is a gift from God! We have no promise of another day past the day we have right now. If we are created in God’s image, and if each day of life is a gift from God, it sounds to me like it’s not all about me!

Are you living in a way that pleases God? Are you practicing the golden rule and putting others above your own wants and desires? Are you using what God has blessed you with in a way that would please Him? You see, stewardship covers every area of our lives. It’s not just the money we have been entrusted with…it is our time…our possessions…our talents…it ALL belongs to Him. It’s not about me…but rather God and His purposes.

What are the two greatest commandments given to us in the Bible?

Mark 12:30-31, “Love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, with all your mind, and with all your strength.  The second is: Love your neighbor as yourself. There is no other commandment greater than these” (HCSB).

We are called to love God and then to love others…as much as we love ourselves! This leaves no room for it being “all about me!” It’s all about God and others. You know what is sad? I’ve met some pretty fine people who seemed to love others more than they love themselves, and as far as I know these people make no profession of being a Christian! On the other hand, I’ve met some pretty selfish “Christians.”

In 1 Corinthians 13:4-5 (the great love chapter) of the Bible, we read these words:

“Love is very patient and kind, never jealous or envious, never boastful or proud, never haughty or selfish or rude. Love does not demand its own way. It is not irritable or touchy. It does not hold grudges and will hardly even notice when others do it wrong” (TLB).

Paul goes on to tell us about his spiritual maturity in verse 11, “It’s like this: when I was a child I spoke and thought and reasoned as a child does. But when I became a man my thoughts grew far beyond those of my childhood, and now I have put away the childish things” (TLB).

I trust your spiritual life has matured past that of a child…I hope you realize that an attitude of “it’s ALL about me” is a childish attitude…like that of my two-year-old daughter. God wants us to mature to a point where we can see beyond ourselves and our selfish wants and desires.

My prayer is that the Lord would help me to be spiritually mature and to live the way He wants me to live each and every day.


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