Let’s not just be hearers of the word, but doers of the word.
Have you ever had a situation where God has prompted you, spoken to you, encouraged you, put something in your heart for you to do something? What did you do about it? How did you respond?
Did you do it? Did you procrastinate? Did you come up with excuses? Did you start but not complete it? Did you do it with all your heart? Did you go about it half-heartedly? Did you do with the excellence that you think God deserves from you?
I can remember a few story where my response wasn’t consistent…
- When God prompted me to get involved in my community by joining the HOA board
- When God prompted me to step up and be president of the board and then gave me an ultimatum.
- When God prompted me to start looking for the place He had put into my heart and head as a child where I could have a horse.
- When God prompted me to look for a new job.
- When God prompted me to get out of the boat.
These 5 different situations didn’t all have the same response nor did they produce the same result. I recommend that when God prompts you, to start and bring to completion the work He wants to do in and through you.
Story #1: Men’s retreat prompting to get involved in the community
So one fall, I went to the church’s men’s retreat and during one of the evenings after the service, but during the prayer time that followed, I felt God prompting me to step up and stand up for the community I was living in by putting my name in to be on the board. When I got home, I spoke to my wife and agreed to it. I grab an application form and submitted it so that I could be on the ballot for the upcoming election. Prior to the election, I was interviewed by the board where I learned more about what they do as well as where they asked me if I wouldn’t be more interested in being on one of the committees since they get one of their quarterly dues back. I explained that I wanted to get involved in the community and that I was more interested in being on the board than getting paid for my service. The election came and I was elected to the board of our HOA which was made up of approximately 10000 residence. During the planning offsite that takes place after the election, the seats on the board are voted on and I was elected secretary and worked on the board for nearly 3 years.
Story #2: Issues within the board of directors in the HOA and God wanted me to step up.
During my second year on the board when the election took place I was elected vice president. Part way through the year there were some conflicts taking place and at one point what I would consider coup took place where a bunch of the board ended up wanting to remove the president from his role on the board. I wasn’t a part of it, and the way it ended up going down, I ended up being the chair for the meeting as the president was out a funeral, which made it even worse for me as he wasn’t there to speak on his own behalf when he was removed as President and decided to also step down from the board. During that meeting I felt God prompting me to step up and put my name in to be president. I ended up coming up with many excuses as to why I wasn’t ready yet and ended up staying in the VP role based on the nominations and votes. It ended up only lasting a few months as it was time for the new elections and then the new board vote for seats. Prior to the retreat and vote God was still working on me while I was driving to work and back home (where I still has reasons/excuses why I shouldn’t be, based on me rather than on Him), but He had a bigger plan and His timing is perfect. So one day while I was at the gym sitting in the hot tub after working out, I heard a big booming voice say to me “You will be president or you will be nothing!” Wow! That got my attention. I knew I didn’t want to be nothing and the voice was so firm and strong I knew it wasn’t a joke. It freaked me out too as I was looking around and there was nobody to be seen in any of the pool area. I remember leaving and every day up to the election for the board seats saying, God, whatever you want, I will do. Just prior the election for members of the board one of the existing members offered to stay on the board so that she could vote for me and then step down as she needed to step down and take care of her mom was diagnosed with cancer. I told her to go and take care of her mom as I knew that if God wanted me on the board He would take care of that. So she stepped down opening another seat on the board for the community election. It came and new members of the board were added. We had the retreat and two of us were nominated for president, I accepted, and when the vote was taken, I was elected President of the HOA. I later learned (God’s perfect timing) that I the other person won, the staff was ready to quit and walk out on the spot. Wow, God knew what He was doing. Many things took place during my stint as President that I won’t go into here, but just as the info about the staff, there were many things that God had prepared in advance for me to do in this position and I am glad that I stepped up to be the man Go was calling me to be in this season.
Story #3: The dream of an 8 year old boy.
One daily while I was driving home, the thought of a dream God had put in my heart about having a horse came back. I remember as a little boy around 8 years old having the great idea that I would get a horse. So I started to try and figure out how I was going to do that since I lived in a subdivision and no on a farm. Maybe a paper route? Did the math and figured out how long it would take to raise the money to buy a horse. Fortunately for me and the horse, I kept doing the math around the cost of keeping a horse and realized the paper route wouldn’t cut it so there ended up being no horse. I remember clearly my talk to God: “God, if you put this crazy idea in the mind of an 8 year old boy and I am supposed to have a horse, can you put it within 20 minutes of the church?” and what answer did I get? The memory of a sermon I had heard which spoke to the point that it is easier to steer a car that is moving. So I realized that I needed to start looking. So I looked online and found 3-4 places for horses nearby that were for sale ranging from 4-7 million which were 3.5-6.5 million too much. Talking with my wife we found out there was a guy at our church who was into real estate so we talked to him and started to look. To shorten the story a bit, 21 houses later, we found one, it was more than my original number I had given, but I hadn’t gone and talked to the bank yet and so I did and we bought the farm. There were people who had their horses on the property already and wondered if we would be ok letting them stay. Of course having horse property with no horses in the field would be a bummer, so we agreed and had great lawn ornaments that moved. J Later after those horses were gone, another friend asked if they could put their horses in our field and give their pony to my oldest daughter. I said yes to the horses, but that they would need to teach my daughter how to take care of and ride the pony they wanted to give her. So they did. I remember turning to God and thanking Him for the great home and allowing me to see the horses, but that I never had one, but how happy that He blessed my daughter with one. Then He reminded me how after one of the first two horses had died that the owner stopped visiting and how I was taking care of the horse for quite a while. He pointed out to me how I had a horse without having to buy it. God is so good.
Story #4: God prompted me to move on for my own good, but I stuck around feeling too comfortable and dealt with the consequences.
It was an incredible time in my career where I was getting awards, rewards, and great complements and encouragement for the work I was doing. I felt nudging and prompting me to move on. But my answer was, “but God it is so great here, I am so comfortable”. That decision cost me some real bumpy roads. The org was blown up. The journey through that process was filled with lies and unmet expectations. The one good thing I learned through the process was the power of forgiveness in healing and being able to move forward. I also learned the importance to obeying God’s prompting. If you want to learn more about this story, scan my blog for forgiveness and unforgiveness and you will learn more about this time and this story.
Story #5: God prompts me with Peter’s story of getting out of the boat.
This was an incredible day and journey while leads me right up to where I am today. One morning my Bible reading was about Peter getting out of the boat and walking to Jesus on the water. As I was driving to Word, I asked God, “If Microsoft is the boat and I am supposed to get out, can you please tell me which side of the boat? As I reached the stop sign and started onto the next road, my phone made its sound that I had a text message and when I looked it said — Get out of the boat.” Wow, I now knew I needed to get started and that God would guide me so that I would get out on the right side of the boat. There are different parts of this story in the blog, but that night I went home and got started by updating my resume and my LinkedIn profile and then sending out emails to some friends at different companies and applying for jobs. Take a look on my blog for entries about “Get out of the boat” and learn more.
God’s plans for our lives are good. God’s timing is perfect. So how will you respond? Will you be obedient? Will be more than just a hearer of the Word, but also a doer of the Word? We all have the benefit and the problem that we have a freewill and are not robots. So just like me, you get to choose for yourself what and how you will respond. Keep listening and then start doing what He is telling you so that you can experience all that God has planned for you.
- God’s Word – The Bible – http://bible.com
- TGIF – Today God Is First – Waiting for the Lord – Psalm 27:14
- Fearful to fearless – 365 Fear Nots: Verse of the Day – Matthew 6:28-30
- Eat this Book: One Year Bible with Daily Psalm – Day 6
I thank You for this new day and for everything that will be in it. I thank You Lord for Your Word that never returns void and is always true. I lift up my family, my friends, and everyone who reads this to You Lord in hopes that when You prompt, they will respond. I lift this day up to You Lord and ask that with every thought, word, and action, You will receive the praise, honor, and glory, in Jesus’ name. Amen.