How to Have Your Plans Succeed

“Entrust your works to the Lord, and your plans will succeed.”          Proverbs 16:3 (NABRE: New American Bible Revised Edition) http://www.theinspirationcafeblog.net Hoping Your Plans Will Succeed? Hoping your plans will succeed? Every plan needs goals, and a firm foundation to grow on, to build on. Sure, you can go about doing all the planning and implementation and hope for the best outcome. The world tells us that hard work is all that is needed to succeed in this life. True, hard work is necessary for anything we embark on to succeed. But that is just part of the story.   A Team Approach Certainly, we also need to depend on funding and finding the materials and resources to do the job. Often times our plans include other people, as well, so you will want to identify and surround yourself with honest, skilled people to help. Depending on the job at hand, many plans include building a team approach to tackle and implement all the details that you have laid out for the goals you have set. You’ll likely try to find the brightest minds, those with the highest skills, and backers with the appropriate financial assets. With all that in place, the stage is set for success as you stand at the helm of every project or job that comes along. There is nothing else you could possibly need…Or is there?   Learning to Depend on God The above scripture from Proverbs 16:3 tells us simply to, “Entrust your works to the Lord, and your plans will succeed.” It does not say we have all the answers and everything we...

The 7 Promises of God

                                     THE INSPIRATION CAFÉ BLOG                                        http://theinspirationcafeblog.net  ************************************************* The 7 Promises of God Chaplain Adele M. Gill “I am with you and will watch over you wherever you go…                             I will not leave you until I have done what I have promised you.”   Genesis 28:15    The 7 Promises of God. It really is such a blessing to know that God, Our Creator, is with us wherever we go; that we are not on our own! We are never beyond his view, and he is there with us to love, comfort, guide, and protect us in our daily lives. No one could ever know us better than God, and His love for each of us is unmatched, unconditional, and never ending! Sometimes when we pray, it seems like no one is listening. It feels like a futile attempt to reach out to a God who is not listening. Yet, other times, it seems that the heavens open up and we are profoundly blessed with answers to our prayer. However, we must not lose heart when our prayers are not answered straight away, as God continues to work out all of details  we are unaware of. It is important to pray with great anticipation and trust that God will do what He has promised according to Holy Scripture. No, that does not mean life will be perfect, but...

Prayerful Encouragement

“Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.”    Matthew 5:3 Prayerful Encouragement. Recently, I was approached at the local soup kitchen by three homeless men. Two of them I know quite well. They were eager to tell me about the third man, Vinny, who was newly homeless, and really struggling. It turns out they were very concerned about him. For three weeks he had been drinking heavily and sleeping on the pavement in front of a popular local pub. He was sorely in need of help in every way. He said he hadn’t eaten in four days, and hadn’t bathed or changed his clothes in a month, and I had reason to believe what he said was true on both counts. Never Beyond Help As I listened to Vinny sobbing and talking about his plight, I couldn’t help but notice he continually told me he was beyond help. Certainly to the naked eye, that appeared to be the case, as even his friends who were trying to help him soon agreed with him that he was beyond help.  Vinny presented excuse after excuse as to why he could not be helped. He sobbed all the harder as he picked at his lunch as after going a few days without food, his appetite was greatly diminished.    “Truly I tell you, whatever you did not do for one of the least of these, you did not do for me.” Matthew 25:45   God’s Holy Intervention As Vinny spoke, I prayed asking for God’s holy intervention in his life. I prayed that God would somehow give me the words to comfort, and help...

How God Blesses His People

The Lord gives strength to his people; the Lord blesses his people with peace.   Psalm 29:11 Strength and peace. Today’s scripture tells us these are the blessings bestowed upon us by God when we seek Him with all our hearts, and follow Him and His ways. No One Could Convince Him For 9 years, I have been working weekly with a man, I’ll call him George for anonymity, at a local soup kitchen. Each week he has made a point of telling me, convincingly, with a booming voice, “God hates me!” Despite the fact that my best efforts to convince him otherwise have fallen on deaf ears, he has had no peace, but his mantra has been unchanging, “God hates me! If He cared about me, He would not have let me have 3 back surgeries, live at an emergency homeless shelter, and all the other awful things that have happened to me in my life. I’m a good person. But my life has been really hard, and no one can convince me that God loves me. What has He ever done for me?” Then one day recently, something changed… The Awakening One day, as George came into the soup kitchen, he seemed different than he had over the 9 years I had known him. “I have something to tell you,” he said. “I had a bad car accident last week and my vintage Mustang was totaled. Here’s the picture of my wrecked car. I’m Ok. Walked away without a scratch. But there’s more. When I went to get a new car, I was really upset because I knew I...

Part II: Joy Abounds

‘The joy of the Lord is your strength.’ Nehemiah 8:10 Joy abounds. I recently wrote about joy in a blog called ‘Unshakable Joy.’ However, it is important enough to continue on the topic, hence Part II. ‘If God is for us, who can be against us?’ For Christians, love and peace and joy are central concepts. God-based joy especially has the ability to help us live hope-filled lives in peace. There is no need for despair and/or hatred when you are confident that God is in control and fighting your battles for you. ‘If God is for us, who can be against us?’ When you believe God is at the helm and in control, you are more able to hop hurdles and challenges that would bog anyone down in their humanness. In fact, joy is a manifestation of God working in one’s life, and is accompanied by a deep, abiding peace. Happiness vs Joy Joy is one of the first fruits of the Holy Spirit. To experience joy in our lives is a blessed gift from God, an enduring treasure. Happiness is similar to joy. However, it leaves us feeling good for a time, then the feeling soon passes, as life presses on with its ongoing issues, challenges, frustrations, and disappointments. In essence, happiness is often a fleeting feeling, but joy is lasting as it stays with us even and especially as we enter into times of adversity. Happiness is dependent on one’s mood, environment, short comings, successes and accomplishments, where joy is more of an enduring internal state found when one experiences the peace that the Holy Spirit of Jesus brings. Joy...

Seeking God’s Light

http:www.theinspirationcafeblog.net ‘When Jesus spoke again to the people, he said, “I am the light of the world. Whoever follows Me will never walk in darkness, but will have the light of life.”’  John 8:12 Light. God’s light. Light is vitally important in both the spiritual sense, and the practical sense. The Bible talks a lot about Light. In fact, it is so central to Judeo-Christian teachings, that it is referenced 263 times in the Old and New Testament. Probably one of the most poignant of all usages of the word light is found in the above scripture when Jesus made His seven ‘I Am’ statements found in the Book of John. A Light Illuminating the Darkness We think about light allowing us to see the path ahead of us with confidence. When we speak about light, we think about warmth and comfort and about it illuminating the way, leading us where we are going, as in a lamp for our feet. A light illuminating the darkness. A light at the end of the tunnel. All things eventually come into the light. Some even say there is something wrong if you can’t shine a light on it. For without God’s light, we are lost and living in darkness. The Light of the World In today’s reading, Jesus says, “I am the Light of the world.” In God’s light, there is no darkness at all. Those who follow Him will never walk in darkness, as He shines His light on every aspect of our lives. God knows everything about us, and His people understand the concept of His abiding Light and Love, despite our short comings....