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Monday, March 23, 2015 Dare to Be Diligent

(Posted March 23, 2015)

"Be diligent to present yourself approved to God as a workman who does not need to be ashamed, accurately handling the word of truth" (II Timothy 2:15, bold added).


Some of you may be familiar with the amazing life story...

...of Dr. Ben Carson, the pediatric neurosurgeon who rose from poverty and a fatherless home in Detroit to become world famous.  One of the recurring themes in his life story, recorded in a book and a movie entitled Gifted Hands, is that teachers and others would often open doors of opportunity to him when they saw his eagerness to learn and improve.  Despite strong peer pressure toward mediocrity, Dr. Carson “dared to be diligent,” resulting in excellence in service to others.  

While we can be rightly grateful for God’s unconditional love and mercy through Jesus bestowed upon each of us, many of God’s promises and provisions are conditional in nature. Reflecting on Dr. Carson’s example (and that of many others), I realized that this scenario holds true in many ways in God’s Kingdom.  While we can be rightly grateful for God’s unconditional love and mercy through Jesus bestowed upon each of us, many of God’s promises and provisions are conditional in nature.  As we obediently, diligently, and proactively put forth our best effort, God in turn showers favor upon us in amazing and unforeseen ways. 

No doubt you can think of many examples from your own life experience, or from the pages of the Bible.   Here are a few “if-then” conditional promises from God’s Word:

  • “and (if) My people who are called by My name humble themselves and pray and seek My face and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven, will forgive their sin and will heal their land. “ (II Chronicles 7:14)
  • “Train up a child in the way he should go, (and) even when he is old he will not depart from it.” (Proverbs 22:6)
  • “You husbands in the same way, live with your wives in an understanding way … so that your prayers will not be hindered.”  (I Peter 3:7)
  • “Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God.  And the peace of God, which surpasses all comprehension, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.” (Philippians 4:6,7)
  • “When a man’s ways are pleasing to the Lord, (then) He makes even his enemies to be at peace with him.”  (Proverbs 16:7)
  • “Humble yourselves in the presence of the Lord, and He will exalt you.”  (James 4:10)
  • “But seek first His kingdom and His righteousness, and all these things will be added to you.”  (Matthew 6:33)
  • Add your own… there are many more!

Also from the pages of Scripture, I think of young Timothy.  Admonished “not to despise his youth,” he was a model of one who’s diligent attitude as a learner and disciple engendered good will from his primary mentors: Paul, Barnabas, Lois (Mother), and Eunice (Grandmother).  In the Book of II Timothy, Paul provides many exhortations towards diligence and obedience to the young man he regarded as a son, including the following: "My wise mother knew that Be diligent to present yourself approved to God as a workman who does not need to be ashamed, accurately handling the word of truth" (II Timothy 2:15, bold added).

Isn’t this great advice for all of us?  From my earliest remembrances, I can still hear my own mother saying “Bobby, your father and I don’t expect you to be perfect.  We just want you to do your best.”  I heard this when I entered the first grade, and when I entered college.  She was encouraging me to be diligent, to be a learner, to reach my full God-given potential in Jesus.  My wise mother knew that “if I did my best, God would take care of the rest.”  

May each of us seek to fulfill the conditions of God’s many rich promises on our behalf.  May we “Dare to be Diligent.”  Then we will experience the promises themselves -- to our edification, to the blessing of others, and to His Glory!

Put on your thinking cap.
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Respectfully in Christ, 

Bob Dees
LU Institute for Military Resilience
www.LUOnline.com/IMR

 

PS: The next Institute for Military Resilience (IMR) Webinar entitled

“Marks of a Great Military Chaplain:
Caring for the Warrior’s Soul”

will be presented by Chaplain (Colonel) Steve Keith from the Liberty University Center for Chaplaincy at 8 PM on Thursday, April 9, 2015.  An Active Duty Air Force chaplain for over 30 years with multiple deployments into harm’s way, former director of the Armed Forces Chaplain Center and Commandant of the Air Force Chaplain Corps College, and current Director of the Liberty University Center for Chaplaincy, Chaplain (Colonel) Steve Keith will be presenting our next webinar, seeking to best prepare chaplain students to provide soul care for the military members they will serve.

See you there for a powerful time of unique insights into
caring for the warrior’s soul.

Visit www.liberty.edu/IMRWebinars for more information.


 
Posted at 9:47 AM | Comments (0)
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