All posts tagged: obedience

Is Your Anchor Attached to the Almighty?

Have you ever heard a speaker address a large crowd, but knew God was using the person to speak directly to you? I’ve attended many conferences and have heard many speakers deliver top of the line messages but for some reason, there has been one message rolling around in my head more than any other. At this year’s Belonging Conference Robert Madu said, “You don’t have a faith problem, you have an awareness of God’s authority issue.” As he spoke these words, they hit my heart deep and helped me see things about myself I’ve been missing for years. If faith is the anchor to your life, I’ve always had a strong anchor. I hope for the things of God and see the evidence of Him lived out in my life, but an anchor needs to be attached to the boat. Robert Madu explained how the chain is your awareness of God’s authority in your life. You see, for me, I believe God has the whole world in His hands, but I fail to trust …

Can You Trust God’s Ultimate Plan?

At Southern Hills, we are making our way through the first six chapters of Daniel. So far, we have been taught about God’s sovereignty, King Nebuchadnezzar’s (“King Neb” as I will call him) pride and anger, Daniel’s faithfulness to God, and more. It is interesting to note at the end of chapter two King Neb is praising the LORD, God of Israel. Then, Daniel 3 begins with King Neb fashioning an idol made of gold. And this idol is huge! Once the idol is finished, King Neb demands everyone bow down and worship it. Whoever refuses will meet death by fire. As you can imagine, people worshiped the idol—just as the King had commanded. Everyone except for 3 men—Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego. As you may know, these men refused to bow down to King Neb’s idol and were thrown into the furnace. But they lived! Let’s consider the conversation place between King Neb and the three Hebrews. King Neb said: “But if you do not worship, you shall immediately be cast into a burning fiery …

Are You Confusing Self-Control with Righteousness?

Isn’t it funny, and kind of bittersweet, how we look back and see the way we used to think when we were young? The more I age the more I realize I knew very little when I was younger. Kelli and I are going on 10 years of marriage and I’ve learned so much since then. Let me give you some context. When Kelli was 16 years old, just 2 years before we met, her parents divorced. There was a lot of pain for Kelli in the midst of the split and much of it was directed towards her dad. Fast forward a few years and I found myself sitting in Shannon’s office. I don’t remember the context of the entire conversation or why we were even having the conversation. I do remember talking about my marriage and my responsibility as a husband and a man. I remember telling Shannon for the first several years in our marriage my goal was simple: don’t be her dad. It was a pretty easy gauge to control myself …

Not a River You Can Just Wade In

Wisdom is less like a deep ocean and more like the force of a river. The power of the river is in its ability to adapt to its environment, change its course when necessary, and yet find its way towards its destiny. – Erwin McManus I read these words recently in a book titled The Way of the Warrior. I was immediately taken back a couple of summers ago when we took a trip out to Colorado. The quote evoked a very specific memory I had of a river we stayed near for a night. There are few places in that area of the country that don’t romance the soul. I remember taking the kids down to the rocky bank and deciding to take a swim. The river had some rapids visible upriver and downriver, but the spot we were at appeared deep enough and slow enough to wade in, chill out, and relax a little. After committing to just past knee deep I was suddenly taken aback and surprised by the sheer force of …

Trust Me, It’s Better to Obey Now

Ok, God, what do you want me to write about for this blog? No… I’m not writing about that. What else you got? When I was fighting God on writing this blog, He reminded me what happened the last time I disobeyed Him. So here we go… The Holy Spirit had been prompting me to have a conversation with a friend, let’s call them Logan. I rationalized it wasn’t my place and I was being overly critical. The thought nagged me, but I continually pushed it away. Eventually I did something I thought Logan would never know about. Turns out they were well aware of it and my actions hurt their feelings. Is God calling you to have a difficult conversation? Take it from me, you don’t want want to ignore the Holy Spirit. Here are 3 things God showed me through this experience and I hope it encourages you to act in obedience. It is your place. Romans 12:5 says, “so it is with Christ’s body. We are many parts of one body, and …

How Resolved Are You?

The dictionary defines the word resolution as “​a firm decision to do or not to do something.” Some of the synonyms of the word resolution include aim, resolve, single-mindedness, will power, and decision. In other words, when resolved, we have decided our course, and we are doing what it takes to achieve that end. Resolution is also defined as “the action of solving a problem, dispute, or contentious matter.” This word is what we think of in legal action. People go to mitigation to achieve resolution to a dispute. As I think of resolutions, I think of one of the most famous resolutions, which became something so much different. The Richard Henry Lee Resolution became something that changed our world. It was his resolution, submitted to the Second Continental Congress, which led to the creation of the Declaration of Independence. It was the line drawn in the sand to declare the “colonies” as an independent nation called the United States. Throughout history, God has had a plan of resolution. As modern day Christians, we have …

Are You Leading For The Good of Others?

My second daughter, Vivian, is in Pre-K this year. As a member of the class, they share different roles. Each person will get to be a door holder, line leader, photographer, etc. She gets so excited when it is her turn to have one of the leadership roles for her class. I think her favorite is photographer. Life is full of leadership roles, even at a young age. What leadership roles do you have? Whether it is when you get a rebound and are the one dribbling the ball, deciding if it will be a fast break or a slow walk up, or you are a boss at work, parent at home, husband to a wife, a door holder, a dog walker or whatever other kind of role you play as a leader, we all play the lead at some point. When we live out those opportunities, we can either lead unselfishly, for the sake of those we are leading, or we can lead for our own gain. In Micah 3:1-7, the prophet is calling …

You Have Much. Are You Owning It?

Leadership is a stewardship. Its temporary. And your accountable. – Andy Stanley As I read through Micah 3 and digested the harsh language directed towards those who held mantles of leadership in ancient Israel, I arrived at one concept: Ownership. In this particular case, Micah is announcing time has expired, and it is time to be held accountable. But this concept can be found throughout scripture. There is a story Jesus tells, found in Matthew 25:14-30, of a wealthy man who goes away and leaves differing amounts of money to three different servants, to manage it on his behalf. The master eventually returns and each servant is called to give an account of what he had done with what he was given. In the end, it wasn’t about the original amount given to them; it was about the their effort, or lack thereof. When someone has been given much, much will be required in return; and when someone has been entrusted with much, even more will be required. Luke 12:48 The truth is we’ve all …

Are You Planning for Destruction or Life?

A few years ago I remember one fateful night. Melissa was gone so it was just me and the two boys home alone. I had walked out of the room for a couple minutes when I heard both boys screaming and laughing. This was not good. This combination is a herald of bad things to come. I walked in the room to find one of my sons in his underwear sitting on the other’s head. “Can you smell it?!?” Kids don’t wake up thinking, “How can I stretch the limit of my parent’s patients and love?” But they still seem to do it, don’t they? (For the record, everyone could smell it.) What sorrow awaits you who lie awake at night, thinking up evil plans. You rise at dawn and hurry to carry them out, simply because you have the power to do so. – Micah 2:1 We “as adults” don’t succumb to the base urges our children do (most of the time). So we think ourselves better in many ways. But here God points …

What Are You Trying to Hide From God?

My dog’s name is Roam. Roam is almost a year old Australian Shepherd. Australian Shepherds are actually one of the smartest breeds of dogs, making Roam too smart for his own good. One of Roam’s favorite things to do is to sneak socks and hide them under our coffee table. We usually catch him pretty early because we can hear him chewing on something other than his toy. When we look underneath the coffee table, we see Roam with a sock right next to his head and him on his back. He knows he is in trouble. He rolls on his back because he doesn’t want to face the punishment of his disobedience. Roam knows what he is doing is disobedient, he knows he is in trouble, but still he continues to sneak off with socks and chew them. He then has to face his punishment as we send him to “his room.” I think a lot of times as people, we act the same way with sin. We talk a lot about the grace …