Tag Archives: strategic living

“‘Why are you sleeping?’ he asked them.  ’Get up and pray so that you will not fall into temptation.’”  (Luke 22: 46, NIV)
 
The most compelling temptation is not the urge to do something that is wrong, but it is the urge to do something that is good but falls far short of excellent.  It is the urge to settle for the near-term tactical advantage at the expense of the long-term strategic victory.
Sleeping is not a bad thing.  It is while we sleep that our bodies repair, refresh and regenerate.  However, in today’s scripture verse, something was happening that called for a response from the disciples that sleeping could never deliver.
To choose to pray is to aspire to see the world as God sees the world.  In prayer, we avoid temptations to settle for anything less than God’s will in the challenges we confront each day.  – Luther
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“Don’t let the excitement of youth cause you to forget your Creator.  Honor him in your youth before you grow old and say, ‘Life is not pleasant anymore.'”  (Ecclesiastes 12:1, NLT)

To “honor God” is to give weight to His will and His way in all that you do.

We “dishonor” God when we “dis” (as in “disregard,” “dismiss,” and “discard”) His invitations.

Most of us do not think of ourselves as “old” (even if we’ve passed the two-thirds point of our life expectancy).  For such people — in particular — the words of Ecclesiastes have a message: Honor God while you can!  Do not allow what the bible calls “the pride of life” to cause you to forget your Creator.

All living things are like grass: Waxing in the springtime, then waning in the autumn.  All living things are like the flower: Fading at the end of its day.

It is far better at the end of our days — when our strength is waning — to have memories of God’s love, care, and faithfulness.  Employ your vigor to make more such memories today!  – Luther

 

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“Moses thought that his own people would realize that God was using him to rescue them, but they did not.”  (Acts 7:25, NIV)

It surprises us — as it did Moses — that others do not realize our status as God’s rescue agent.  From “the outside looking in,” we see situations differently than those in the crisis.

At such moments — when we are filled with enthusiasm, energy, and ardor — we need to guard against the temptation to become “tactical”; that is, to become more concerned about a particular, single battle than we are the entire war.  Many have lost wars despite having won most of the battles.  The key is to choose, and to fight, the right battles.

Above all, it is crucially important that we keep our ego in check.  The recognition and praise of others is a poor barometer (as we saw with Jesus on Palm Sunday when he entered Jerusalem to the praise of the people, only to hear many of those same voices call for His crucifixion a few days later).

Instead, work assiduously for the honor and the glory of our heavenly Father.  – Luther

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