Success by God's Word

Posts tagged ‘success’

Don’t Overlook This: Pray for Success

Save now, we beseech You, O Lord; send now prosperity, O Lord, we beseech You, and give to us success!

Psalm 118:25 (AMP)

Prayer for SuccessI have read this scripture many times but recently it really ministered to me. I realize that we often strive hard to achieve success in our personal and business lives. We try different ways to reach the mark we have set for ourselves but there is one important thing we overlook – to pray for prosperity and success. That’s what hit me when I read this scripture – David asked God for success.

In other words he was saying to God: “Lord, I need success now. I have struggling through life, I have been working really hard, and I can make it without you. Give me favor, Father. And let there be continued and uninterrupted prosperity in my life.” David had his fair share of trouble. He knew what it was like to be hated because God had anointed him.  He longed for success.

When we read his life story, we see a man who actively pursued his calling. He occupied himself as a man of war while moving towards his destiny – to be what God wanted him to be, the king of Israel. Yet there is one thing we can all learn from David. He constantly ran to God in prayer at critical times to find out what He should do (1 Samuel 23:1-5; 1 Samuel 30:8; 2 Samuel 21:1-3). He knew how to acknowledge God in all he did and what it was like to receive direction from God. Furthermore, he understood what it meant to obey God’s instructions and in every circumstance to reap success.

David provides the classical example for us – if we want success – we must prayer before we act especially when making critical decisions. Other people of God throughout the Scriptures also confirm this truth, that seeking God is necessary in achieving success:

  • Moses acted on God’s instructions to lead the people of Israel out of Egypt (Exodus 3-14).
  • Joshua led a successful victory over Jericho because he followed God’s not-so-orthodox instructions (Joshua 6).
  • Jehoshaphat and the people of Israel or Judah fasted and prayed before going to battle. Again a hands-down victory was won without the people of God fighting the battle (2 Chronicles 20).
  • Ananias obeyed God’s instructions to pray for Saul after receiving a vision from the Lord. Obedience (despite his initial concerns about Saul) not only brought healing to Saul but also cause him to receive the Holy Spirit and become a great apostle (Acts 9: 10-19).

I have seen how praying and acting on God’s instructions have led to personal victories for me. Admittedly there were times I was hesitant to obey because I wondered if I was hearing from God or didn’t think what I was guided to do seem logical. However, I soon realized that God doesn’t do things the way we do, He sees way ahead of us and as such we should just trust and obey.

If we want to be successful, we need to include these two important godly principles in every area of our lives:

  1. Follow the instructions for success and prosperity as given in Joshua 1:7-9. Read the word, meditate on it day and night and obey it.
  2. Like the Psalmist did pray for success (Psalm 118:25) and the way to do this is the acknowledge God in all you do and He will certainly directly you along life’s journey (Proverbs 3:5-6).

My challenge to you is to pray for success everyday as you work towards to your goals and your God-given assignments. Don’t be shy to ask it: “Lord, give me success now.” When you live to honor the Lord; He will not reject your plea for success.

May success come to you as you seek and do His will. God bless you!

Simplify Your Life: Ask for Help

Don’t fret or worry. Instead of worrying, pray. Let petitions and praises shape your worries into prayers, letting God know your concerns. Before you know it, a sense of God’s wholeness, everything coming together for good, will come and settle you down. It’s wonderful what happens when Christ displaces worry at the center of your life. (Philippians 4:6-7, MSG)

The previous post in this Simplify Your Life series discussed a few life habits we can develop to remain focused on God. Peace and confidence are blessings which become evident when God is central in our lives. In this post, we will consider an often overlooked practice that can reduce our busy schedules.

Asking for help isn’t always easy. Pride can get in the way. We all like to know that we can hold our own. However, asking for help relieve feelings of frustration and pressure and prevent you from becoming exhausted.

I recall an occasion when I needed help. Every Monday I hosted and led a small group meeting in my home. At the start of a new school year my daughter’s school program changed and I needed to help her with homework. Those evenings proved challenging as I juggled meeting preparation and homework.  I discussed alternatives with the group members but changing the time wasn’t feasible.

Then I asked God to show me the best way to fulfill both commitments. Within two weeks, my daughter’s school introduced a homework program. This was the answer to my prayer for help! She was able to complete her work during the after-school program giving me the freedom to continue the group meetings as scheduled.

If you feel overwhelmed or think you are headed for burn-out, consider these simple life habits to get your life on track and receive the help you need.

Simple Life Habits For Everyday Success
  • Pray about everything in your life.
  • Doing this will release you from worrying. As you seek God’s direction He will show you what to do or send you the help you need.
  • Recognize that God is always with you.
  • This will certainly bring peace into your life. Knowing that God is with you provides inner strength.
  • Have weekly family meetings for open discussion, prayer and thanksgiving.
  • This keeps everyone at home on the same page and working together as a unit relieves the stress of going it alone.
  • Relieve yourself of full time duty. Don’t be ashamed to ask for help and accept it when offered.
  • It will create some free time rest as well as give you the opportunity to do something you’ve always wanted to do.

No man is an island. We are not here to go it alone. The Word constantly comforts us with the promise that God is with us always. From the beginning we weren’t meant to live in a vacuum. Embrace at least two of the life habits above that you know will make your life simpler.

If you’re the type to do it all yourself, I have challenge for you: Think about an area where you need a helping hand. Identify friends or family members you can ask to assist you accomplish that task. Then, ask them. You may be surprised to hear, “Yes.”

Until next time,

Keep life simple.

Simplify Your Life

I came that they may have and enjoy life, and have it in abundance (to the full, till it overflows). (John 10:10, AMP)

I’ve been trying very hard to make my busy life uncomplicated. With the addition of this new blog adventure, a full time job, family commitments and book publishing on the horizon it seems close to impossible. Recently, I’ve been asking myself a few questions: How do I keep my life simple yet effective? Or how do I keep emails, phone calls, project deadlines, family commitments, my life goals and plans from becoming overwhelming? Have you ever asked yourself similar questions?

Life demands often seem urgent. There is always something that needs your attention, or someone who needs your help. Along with life goings-on is the challenge of living in this technological advanced age where many opportunities abound. There is a constant struggle to juggle all life’s activities. But the need to keep life simple is more necessary now than ever before. Why? If you don’t maintain a simple life, you’re likely to lose peace of mind and be diverted from living out your purpose. An abundant life – a better life – is often not in the more or the complicated but in the simple.

Without noticing it, we often slip into bad habits or break good ones and when we do we feel out of sorts. If we want to live simple yet successful lives, we will need to develop some healthy habits or practices to make this possible. When I feel overwhelmed I know that it is time to restore simplicity and order to my life. Here are some of the areas I try to work on to keep my life as simple as possible:

  1. Focus On God
  2. Ask For Help
  3. Manage Your Time
  4. Reduce the E-Load
  5. Remove The Clutter
  6. Clear Your Mind
  7. Keep Your Finances In Order
  8. Stick To Simple Habits

Over the next few weeks I will review some habits or practices you can use to simplify your life. Some of which I either practice myself or have seen my friends incorporated into their lives. From each discussion point I hope that you will find something that you will work for your life. It is in these small habits or changes that you can find everyday success and achieve your life goals with less stress.

7 Ways to Live on Purpose

Lately, I’ve been hearing a lot about living on purpose and the importance of pursuing your dreams. But what does it really means to live on purpose? I’ve defined this as intentionally living out your vision – dreams, goals or pursuits. It’s living out God’s will for your life. To live on purpose is to live your life by design.

That sounds great but how do you do this? I’ve noticed that it can be challenging to keep the fire burning and remain purpose-driven. In my life recently I’ve been telling myself that “there too many moving parts” towards my pursuits. I’ve been wondering how to keep up with all of life and still live out my dreams in an effective manner.

The question is: How do I daily keep focus on my purpose? What do I do to continually move forward and achieve my goals?

This post includes some of the habits I use to maintain intentional living.

Know what your purpose is. This may go without saying but still we need to be reminded. What is your dream or the major goals you want to accomplish in your lifetime?

  • Ask God for direction if you’re not sure of the specifics. God’s will for you is wrapped up in you waiting to come out.
  • Assess yourself. Learn about you. What are your likes, dislikes, gifts, talents, education, personal experiences (problems you have overcome), passions, and interests? A good question to ask is: What do I love doing and would be willing to do without being paid for it?

Have a vision and write it out. Sit down in a quiet place with no distractions of any kind and dream a little, no, a lot. This can be a scary thing but you need to take time to think about your life and what you want it to look like. The challenge is linking it to God’s will for you but if you approach this time with prayer (and fasting, if possible) the Lord will guide you. Remember He is your Shepherd.

  • Whatever your dreams are – write them down. Get it out of your head and on paper. It will clear your mind and relieve the mental load you may have been carrying.

Set small goals. I would suggest that you do this the same day as your dreaming day but don’t delay too long.  Choose another quiet time and begin to put your big dreams into smaller goals.

  • Span those big goals into your lifeline from current tasks and projects, to one- to two-year goals, three- to five- year goals all the way up. For your one year plan break it down in quarterly, monthly, weekly and daily tasks.

Create signposts. We are encouraged to know the Word and keep it close wherever we can see it. I believe that you can do the same with your goals. You’ve written them out but to keep focused on them and act on them you’ll need to develop signposts.

  • Post these goals along with God’s promises to your computer or mobile phone as the wallpaper or in a file that you constantly refer to
  • Post them where you frequent the most: your dresser mirror, refrigerator door, home office desk
  • You can even create picture collage that represent all the different aspects of your dream and post it where you can see it often.

For example, maybe you have goal to lose five inches off your waist (my wish) and strengthen your abs – post a photo of a fitness advertisement and write on it, “How am I doing today?” Make sure it is strategically placed where you can see it to motivate you to exercise and eat right.

Depend on God’s direction. Again, I refer to what God says about His word – talk about the Word when you get up, lay down, with your children, at all times really. You need to do the same for your goals.

  • Talk to God throughout the process. God is the CEO of your life. He is the Master Strategist. He will give you direction to help you live on purpose and fulfill your destiny. Trust God through the process and enjoy the journey which is all part of living on purpose.

Talk about your dream. When you talk about something a lot it becomes more and more real to you. Talking positively about your dreams is a great self-motivator.

  • Speak the word concerning your dream. Visualize and confess the word as it relates to you dream. Speak those things as though they already exist even though they are yet to become real. Your tongue is a creative force. Use it well to build your life and fulfill destiny.
  • Talk to trusted friends. Choose carefully those who you share your most important goals with. There are some who will support you and there are others who will question your dreams. Find and hold to those who will rally around you and support you in prayer and in practice.

Work on your purpose daily. Work your dreams. This requires daily effort but you can do it.

  • Review your goals daily and every night write at least seven things you want to accomplish the next day.
  • Keep that list where you can clearly see it and make sure to act on what you have written down. Set you mind daily to do at least two or three tasks related to your goals.

No amount of planning is useful with acting on the plans.

I hope my list above will benefit you. It is by no means an exhaustive discussion on the topic but hopefully it’s enough to either help you move in the right direction or encourage you to continue living intentionally.

Tell me and encourage others too: What do you do to keep living on purpose?

7 Strategies to Overcome Your Problems

Recently a friend encouraged me to read and pray based on the story of King Jehoshaphat. As I did, the Lord pointed out clearly how we can overcome our problems if we use this example to guide us through the battles of life.

1. Run to God in Prayer

Oftentimes when confronted with a problem our human response is to feel overwhelmed and fearful. This is what the enemy wants to do – strike fear in the hearts of the unbeliever. But we should take Jehoshaphat’s example to heart – although he was afraid he quickly sought God in prayer.

2. Fast in the midst of Prayer

Fasting tells God that He is more necessary than the necessary food you eat. Fasting isn’t a show to the world but a cry for help to God. Fasting gets God’s attention more readily – He sees your sincerity and that your need is urgent.

3. Gather Support

Don’t fight alone. Involve others in the battle you are fighting. You may call your family to fast with you or have family prayer until you see the victory. You can join with a close friend to pray over the situation. Remember, one can chase a thousand and two put ten thousand to flight (Deuteronomy 32:30; Joshua 23:10). There is power in united prayer and fasting.

4. Receive the Word of God

God will speak to you and to your problem; you need to have listening ears and a receptive heart. His word can come at any time – through a sermon, a song, a friend or personal Bible study. When you get that Word from God, you just accept it.

5. Worship God

One beautiful aspect of this story is the people’s immediate response to God’s word in worship even though the battle wasn’t yet won. Please hold on to God’s promise of victory and do not question it at all. Just worship and praise God in the midst of the challenge and when you’ve triumphant over the enemy.

6. Obey God

There is a part for all of us to play in any problem or challenge we face. God will give us the breakthrough and He will use our obedience to His word to do it. Just as these people followed the instructions God gave them – though not the typical warring instructions – they did it and won a fight they didn’t fight! So you to, “Position yourselves, stand still and see the salvation of the Lord, who is with you.”

7. Expect to Win

Be like the people of Judah and go out to battle singing praises to God. They knew they would win because God was fighting for them. When God fights for you, you are destined to win and you will receive abundant blessings.

Conclusion

Even if fear comes, we can overcome it and win the battle if we follow this and other numerous examples given to us in God’s word.

Don’t be afraid when trouble comes. Ask God to fight on your behalf. With Him you will win!

Encourage yourself and others: What has been your response when faced with a problem? How did God work for you?

Special Note: I know that I haven’t exhausted this topic. Take the time to read 2 Chronicles 20:1-29 and pay close attention to Jehoshaphat’s pray, the word the Lord gave to him and how he encouraged the people to trust God. Then take time to pray according to this Word.

5 Reasons for Creating Your Own Season

Celebrate

I like the ushering in of a new year. The celebration of what has passed and the welcoming of want is to come just brings such excitement. During these seasons, we don’t just celebrate but we think, we pray, we hope, we believe for a year or time ahead full of great and wonderful things happening in our lives. Some of us set goals about what we would like to accomplish. Some of us pray about them consistently. Some strategize on how to make our goals become reality.

I believe God gives allows times and seasons for a purpose – to refresh us. Just as the season of winter, spring, summer and fall have a purpose in renewing and refreshing the earth, so do the seasons or celebrations in our lives. Seasons like New Year’s, Easter, Christmas – whether man-made or God-made – can have a positive impact on our lives.

Apart from the normal seasons most people celebrate; we can create our own seasons that bring refreshing and renewal in our lives. For me, I set apart a specific time of thanksgiving and reflection at least four times a year. I like to sit with my journal and write a note of praise (which is often very long note) to God as I reflect over the days, weeks and months of the previous quarter. I like to celebrate God’s goodness to me and would spend extra time in praise and thanksgiving to honour Him.

But what benefits have I reaped from creating times of celebration and thanksgiving and what can this do for you? Creating your own season of celebration can:

  1. Keep your mind on the Source of your life and on the Help of my life. “You will keep him in perfect peace, whose mind is stayed on You, because he trusts in You.” (Isaiah 26:3, NKJV)
  2. Re-ignite a heart of gratitude in you. Sometimes the grind of life can take its toil on your attitude and your outlook on life. If you set aside special times of thanksgiving and celebration to God you will be uplifted and you will gain new energy to keep going.
  3. Create a moment of pause. You will gain some perspective on what you’ve accomplished through Christ. It helps you to determine where you are, where you need to go and what you need to do and what God wants you to do.
  4. Lift any feelings of discouragement that have been lingering and propel you forward. As you reflect and celebrate you will recognize that Christ, who brought you through the past three months and the prior seasons of your life, is faithful to take you into the next season victoriously.
  5. Give you inner strength to recommit yourself to God and to achieve your goals. In some cases, you may even recognize the need to eliminate or revise some specific goals as the Lord directs you.

Although this season you create isn’t done with the same fanfare as Christmas or New Years’, it can bring the same result – a refreshing, a renewing of the soul, an exception or anticipation for God’s powerful move in your life.

What about you? Do you create and celebrate season in your life to help bring you through the daily grind of life or do you just struggle through? There are times when you have to encourage yourself in the Lord and renew yourself.

Make a conscious effort to create seasons of celebration, thanksgiving, reflection and re-commitment and you will notice that you’ll make it through the year more triumphantly!

Courage in the Face of Fear

Courage“Be strong, be courageous!” It’s a phrase that you often hear but when you are going through a challenging situation, finding that courage is tough at times. But really, what is courage? Courage is fighting through fear. It’s the grace to keep going forward when all else is against you. It’s the ability to keep moving forward when you feel pressed and you’d rather retreat or to stay where you are.

At times I have wondered how people like Moses fought for the freedom of the Israelites. Or how the New Testament church stood strong when persecuted and some were even killed for the sake of the gospel? What about those who fought for their freedom and rights during the civil rights movement? I could keep asking about others but I am not here to raise issues about anyone rights. I am here to ask this: How do you make it through life’s battles when fear seems so strong and overwhelming?

Recently, while watching a movie (a rare occasion for me) I thought about this and realized that people fought through fear and stood their ground for what their believed in dangerous and threatening times. One thing they all had in common was courage. But how did that courage come? That common thread of courage wasn’t based on self confidence. The recounts of history through books, movies and other types of media show where this courage originated from. These people who stood for righteousness and fought for justice knew the word of God. They put their trust in God.

When Joshua took over the leadership of Israel – God commanded him to be strong and to be courageous. Why? The responsibility before him was not short of daunting. He was about to lead Israel into many battles before they could receive their inheritance. God knew he needed the Word to get him through the battles ahead.

I don’t know what battles you are facing today or what fears the enemy use to intimidate you but you know that you need to forge ahead to win the battle. When you face battles in life – whether personal or on behalf of others – fear can rise up in your heart. But God says to those who are His – be strong and be courageous.

Throughout scripture God commands us not to be afraid. In Joshua 1, God gives us the success key for any battle. He points us to His word – to mediate on the word of God, to speak what God’s word says over our lives and over our battles and to “live out loud” a life pleasing to God. God has promised us that through total reliance His word, we have the ability to be prosperous in life and to be successful in all we do. When we rely on the Word it gives us the ability to move from fear to courage because we are not focusing on ourselves but on the ability and availability of our God to fight for us.

In the midst of your battles, rest in this Word and obey God’s command to be strong and be courageous. Use the Word, use the power that God has given you and you will win every battle.

Be strong and be courageous.

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