Life is often very trying whether you are a Christian or not. Difficult circumstances fall on the righteous and unrighteous alike. However, the Christian life often adds to our difficulties. We may be discriminated against because of our faith, or our beliefs may eliminate the "easy" ways out of a problem. But Christ does not ask us to suffer anything for Him that He was not willing to suffer for us. Someday we will be rewarded for our diligence and faith.
Who is He to you
May I ask you a personal question? Do you believe that Jesus Christ is Lord? You do? Then may I ask you another question? Is He your Lord?
Let’s be more specific.
• Is He Lord of your tongue?
• Is He Lord of your time?
• Is He Lord of your treasure?
• Is He Lord of your talents?
• Is He Lord of your testimony?
• Is He Lord in deed as well as word?
Is He truly Lord? Now, don’t answer too quickly.
"LORD, who may dwell in your sanctuary? Who may live on your holy hill?" (Ps 15:1).
In February 2001 Sales and Marketing magazine did a survey and found that among those surveyed:
58% cheat on expense reports
50% work a second job on company time
36% rush closed deals through accounting before they were really closed
22% list a "strip bar" as a restaurant on an expense report
19% give a kickback to a customer*
If Psalm 15 were the core value of every business plan and purpose statement and reviewed with every employee before hiring, the workplace would be a very different place. What type of person can live in the presence of God? The psalmist tells us:
"He whose walk is blameless and who does what is righteous, who speaks the truth from his heart and has no slander on his tongue, who does his neighbor no wrong and casts no slur on his fellowman, who despises a vile man but honors those who fear the LORD, who keeps his oath even when it hurts, who lends his money without usury and does not accept a bribe against the innocent. He who does these things will never be shaken" (Ps 15:2-5).
As Christians, sometimes we are called to surrender the things we love most in order to preserve what Christ has done. It may be our hard-won careers, our deepest dreams, perhaps even the desire for a family of our own. It is a cold and bitter truth, but like many others, Christ does not leave us alone and without hope.
Have you ever thought that one way we lose Jesus is when nonessentials displace essentials. When we are busy, often our spiritual lives are the first things to go. We don't have time to read God's Word. We don't have time to pray, even for a moment. We can't afford to give anything to God because we have so many things to buy. We allow nonessentials to take the place of essentials.
Are you blameless in your approach to your work life? Are you truthful in all your dealings? Do you treat customers, vendors and fellow employees as your neighbor? Do you say what you do truthfully and do what you say? Do you follow through even if the outcome may not be positive? Will you lend money without usury to a friend and refuse a bribe? If you can say yes to these questions then you are a Psalm 15 man or woman and you can dwell on God's Holy hill.
Someone has said, “Christianity is Christ.” How true. We who believe are now in a new position; we are “in Christ.” He is to be the center of our lives. He is to be the focus of the life of the church. We must not let anything else distract us. What about you? What place does Jesus Christ have in your life?
*-- Sales & Marketing Magazine, Feb. 2001