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GOD'S PRINCIPLES FOR LIVING A FULFILLING AND SIGNIFICANT LIFE
Trust in the Lord with all thine heart, and lean not unto thine own understanding. (Proverbs 3:5 KJV)
Today people from all walks of life are looking for significance and fulfillment. Whether it be in their careers, relationships, their positions or their possessions they are longing for fulfillment. Most of my life I have been trying to find fulfillment; but a month ago, I decided to fully commit and learn the Word of God. Through my learning, I am finding fulfillment and through it I hope to find my purpose in life. From reading the Book of Proverbs in the Bible, I am learning that in order to find real fulfillment and significance, we must apply God's principles to our lives and trust Him.
Like many others I struggled with the thought of this Supreme Being watching over me, judging me, etc. There was even one point in my life, I thought anything to do with this God was just a waste of time. Going through the ups and downs of life, I finally reached a point where my understanding of life was no longer clear to me. Everything I tried failed, the things I wanted was beyond my reach and the ability to provide my own needs was nearly depleted. It was at this time, I knew I needed structure. I needed guidance to live a life, I knew I was just wasting away in. I had no purpose. Nothing fulfilled me. It was as if in a blink an of eye, I realized, a life filled without purpose had no significance. It was at this moment, instead of reaching out to others,I began praying and reached for my Bible. Once I read my Bible, I fell into a sleep and when I awoke I felt renewed. My circumstances had not changed; but, I felt like a new being ready to take on the challenges that had been set before me.
A few weeks passed and no way had materialized for me to take on my challenges so one day, I decided to take a nap. During this nap it was if this strong determination came over me to get up and go my church's Prayer Meeting that night so I did. Through prayer, fellowship and The Word Of God, I am now meeting my challenges everyday. When my mind and body becomes tired my spirit keeps up the fight. Many of us have seen God's walk with us and have witnessed that He has kept us from falling; but yet we still refused His Will for our lives. Like me many will come to the crossroads in their lives where they will follow the road to God or continue to seek their own wills. I came to the realization my will was an dead end and the only road to take was the Will Of God.
If you are looking for instruction and wisdom, I would advise you to read the book of Proverbs in the Bible. The key to the book of Proverbs is it's wisdom. One of the book's key verses is found in Chapter 9, verse 10 (9:10), "The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom; and the knowledge of the holy is understanding." (KJV) Everyday, I am learning that wisdom is the application of truths in living and seeing life God's way. As long as you are living it is never too late to learn the true way to live. Afterall, most of us have lived haphazardly. We depended merely on our own understanding or what we was told by others. We merely reacted to the people and situations around us. I was tired of living off the playbook of others. I needed positive guidance. We all do. Wisdom is lacking in the leaders of this country and they all proved it when they nearly brought this country to our knees this past August. None of them was worried about the people that appointed them. It simply came down to the battle of "their" wills. It's enough to discourage anyone to look elsewhere for guidance.
For me it came to simply making a decision and sticking with it. The Bible in Proverbs 3:1-4 (KJV) speaks of Decisions and Determination. "My son, forget not my law; but let thine heart keep my commandments: 2 For length of days, and long life, and peace, shall they add to thee. 3 Let not mercy and truth forsake thee: bind them about thy neck; write them upon the table of thine heart: 4 So shalt thou find favour and good understanding in the sight of God and man.
Translation: My son, do not forget my teaching, but keep my commands in your heart, 2. for they will prolong your life many years and bring you prosperity. 3. Let love and faithfulness never leave you bind them around your neck, write them down on the tablet of your heart. 4. Then you will add favor and a good name in the sight of God and man.
Many of us block our blessings and prevent our own prosperity by not focusing and applying the Truth of God to our lives. The writer of Proverbs (Solomon) first admonish us to put the Word of God in our heads. This means to simply remove all negative thinking from our thoughts and "focus" on the teachings of God. He said in verse 1, "Do not forget my teaching." When we focus on the word of God, we are changing negative thoughts into positive energy. We are ingesting His knowledge and wisdom therefore we are changing a poor diet into an healthy one. The more I remember His teachings, the more I can meditate on His word. I can think more clearly when dealing with day to day challenges. I am learning to put His word in my head and on my heart and therefore I am learning to apply it. This a Gratitude Prayer from a wise man the Dalai Lama: ‘Today I am fortunate to have woken up, I am alive, I have a precious human life, I am not going to waste it. I am going to use all my energies to develop myself, to expand my heart out to others, to achieve enlightenment for the benefit of all beings, I am going to have kind thoughts towards others, I am not going to get angry or think badly about others, I am going to benefit others as much as I can. ’
In school we are taught the different parts of the heart and how they work together to keep us alive physically. For all of us our hearts are our essence. it is what make us intellectual, emotional and vilitional. In lamens terms it determines how we think, feel and it controls our actions. Therefore, this is why the word "Heart" is the most used word to describe the essence of man. Our brains collect knowledge and our hearts determine how we process this knowledge. Wisdom not only delivers us from evil, but it promises certian rewards. In verses 1-2, the reward is longevity and prosperity. Longevity does not mean that years are added to our lives, because our days are set; however, we cut ourselves off when we fail to walk in wisdom. Prosperity is comprised of not only material things but also the capacity to enjoy them. This the prosperity that God wants for our lives. Favor is to be well thought of and to have a good name, which the Bible states is "more precious than gold."
In Proverbs 3: 5-8 (KJV) it tells of Dedication and Destiny. 5 Trust in the Lord with all thine heart; and lean not unto thine own understanding. Here there is a strong admonition for us to exercise trust in a power above and beyond ourselves. When such trust is exercised, we are promised guidance. God's promises to guide and direct our paths as we place our trust in Him. The verse says to "trust with all your heart"-not with all of your eye, but your heart. This is so We walk by faith and not by sight. In every situation we are to trust God with all our hearts, with our innermost beings, meaning we dedicate how we feel, how we think and what we do to trusting God. In all thy ways acknowledge him: simply put, acknowledge him in everything we do. Let the world know all our trust is Him. Acknowledge is a compound word consisting of act and knowledge. Hosea said that "The people perish from their lack of knowledge." Therefore the word Acknowledge in this context is to "Act" to respond to God. God gives us knowledge through His word (The Bible) of how we are relate in our families, our marriages, our money and our workplaces. Hence, the act plus knowledge is how we respond to the information we are given. Without the right decision, right direction or right devotion, is how we become lost. In verse 6b, we are abmonished to acknowledge Him as we respond that knowledge "in all our lives" and he will direct our paths. This literally means that God will not only guide us in the right path, but also He will cut out a path for us. If there is no path, he will create one. Our tradition says that God will make a way out of no way. I can testify to this because, I had no way to meet my day to day challenges and God has now made it possible for me to do so. Many pessimist may ask how does God direct our paths? He does it through the Bible, the Holy Spirit, prayer, preaching and teaching, counseling and circumstances! I would tell anyone, I once held the beliefs of an pessimist's spirt. Although, I went to church, occasionally read my Bible and prayed, I found it hard to believe in God and His miracles. Although, I have witnessed miracles in my life and with others, I looked for other explanations. January 1, 2011 changed that. During the Homecoming Celebration of my son my father died in front of us, I watched my mother pray so hard when he took his last breath, because of her desperate outcries to God, I joined in and so did the rest of the family. He began to breath again; but, he still was not good. It took the emergency workers 20 minutes to get him stabilized for the route to the hospital. My father is still with us and I know it was a miracle. God stepped in and spared his life.
There is refreshment and health benefits to trusting God and walking in the path that He designed. I am now enjoying my life when I was simply wasting away. I went from poor health to an better well being. I have a renewed spirit! It is not wise to know it all; but, to learn and trust in something greater than yourself. We have the ability to block information once we feel we know all we need to know; but, this is how we block our blessings. Therefore, it is not good to be wise in one's own eyes, otherwise known as conceited. To be humble is the willingness to learn and concede to an power greater than ourselves and that power is God. God will provide direction to one's destiny when one is dedicated to Him. All Favor comes from God and I want to walk in His favor. I must confess my soul looks back and wonder how I made this far. When I gave up on Him, He did not leave me. For everything that I desired to be, all of the things I am not, I made it! My life itself is a miracle! The times I could have died on the streets and in my home, God made sure I made it! When the Doctors said there was no more they could do for my Father, he's still here! When the Doctor gave my mother medicines that could have killed her, she survived! Look around and count your blessings!
I have reached the stage of Devotion and Delight (Proverbs 3:9-12. KJV) "Honor the Lord with thy substance, and with all first fruits of all thine increase: 10 So shall thy barns be filled with plenty, and thy presses shall burst out with new wine. 11 My son, despise not the chastening of the Lord; neither be weary of His correction: 12 For whom the Lord loveth He correcteth, even as a father in the son who in whom he delighteth.
In lamens terms: Honor the Lord with thy wealth, with the first fruits of your crops: 10 then your barns will be filled to overflowing, and your vats will brim over with wine. 11 My son do not despise the Lord's discipline and not resent his rebuke. 12 Because the Lord disciplines those he loves, as father the son he delights in.
When we are young we don't understand the rules and boundaries our parents set before us. We feel they are unfair in their judgments against the things we want to do. As adults we understand their convictions of judgments against those very things was for our best. Being young we did not understand the dangers involved in being around certain people and situations. Like God, it is an parents job to put us on the right path, regardless of how we rebel. There are rules to this life and I am not simply talking about the laws that govern us. The Laws of God are our guidance to live an peaceful, disciplined life. A peace and tranquility we cannot receive under the laws of man. In verses 9-10, the person who honors God is granted overflowing barns and prosperity when he places God first in the area of finances. The writer implies there is a direct connection between one's honoring God with his or her possessions and the resulting barns overflowing and the vats being filled with wine. Wine being within this context, refers to abundance, prosperity and blessings. In verses 11-12, we are admonished to view God's discipline as a sign of His love. Like with our parents, by providing discipline when necessary God shows His love for us. He wants the best for us. God wants to keep us walking on the straight path of life, deviating neither to the left or right, staying focused on His will, way and word.
In God's Word you wil find wisdom and only wisdom can make your relationships what they should be. Only wisdom can bring peace. Wisdom secures your name, reputation, purpose and status in life. Going to God (Praying) is how we we can always find wisdom. There will be many that do not believe in your faith and they will test you. Stand strong! God Bless
If "they" don't believe in the call on your life, remind yourself that "they" didn't believe in the call on Jesus' life either. – BUT, He fulfilled it anyway!
Prayer: Our Father and our strong God, we desire to know You personally and be in fellowship with You, so that we will have clear instruction as we move forward in life. In Jesus' name we pray. Amen
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