When Work & Family Collide
By Andy Stanley
- Who wins when your work and family collide?
- It’s usually not God that’s prying you away from your family, it’s your problem.
- There’s not enough time for everything in life, so something has to be shortened — just make sure it’s not your family.
- God made work before family, but there was never a conflict before sin entered the world.
- Work is a means to an end but should not be the end.
- Everyone has good intentions. They want to go on more vacations, have more dates, and have more playing time with the kids, but good intentions aren’t the problem, your schedule is the problem.
- It is not enough for your family to be your priority, they must feel like they are your priority.
- Even more than being loved, your family wants to know they are accepted.
- Does your calendar reveal that your family is your priority?
- Actions speak louder than intentions.
- To stop stealing from your family, you must make a decision that you will be there for them no matter the rewards or outcome.
- Once you decide, you need to decide some nonnegotiables.
- What one change would your wife want you to make so she feels she’s your priority? Maybe she wants you to stop a hobby, arrive home at a certain time, etc.
- Making the excuse that we’re busy in “the Lords work” is more about ego than it is about the Lord.
- If we will learn to work hard while we’re at work, we can relax when we’e at home.
- The things that make or break you at work usually don’t have much to do with your work schedule, rather the priorities and opportunities.
- The blessings of God do not come as a result of violating God‘s principles.
- You will retire or stop working at some point in life. Who you you go home to is determined by the priorities you put in practice now.
- It has been said that no one gets to the end of their life and wishes they spent more time at work — and you are not the exception.
The On-Time, On-Target Manager
By Ken Blanchard and Steve Gottry
- People often procrastinate because they do not have a clear picture of what is important.
- Procrastinators cause stress for both themselves and for others.
- Procrastination causes someone to wait until the last minute and then juggle things, not doing any of them well.
- Procrastination is one of the biggest reasons someone arrives to their destination late.
- Procrastination is almost always a bad concept of priorities.
- Do the right thing, at the right time, and in the right order.
- Do the right things for the right reasons and with the right people.
- Do the right things but in the right order.
- Be committed, but be committed to the right things. Procrastination is not being committed, or not being committed to the right things.
- On-time, on-target managers know how to say yes to the right things and no to the wrong things.
What the Most Successful People do Before Breakfast
By Laura Vanderkam
- You can spend 3-4 hours a day on mindless tasks such as checking email, scrolling through FB, or just sitting there.
- Your highest value jobs are nurturing your family, nurturing your career, and nurturing yourself (prayer, hobbies, exercise).
- Before eating breakfast, some of the most successful people have already accomplished things.
- Successful people have things they want to tackle, and early mornings are the most controlled time they have.
- Mornings are one of the most available and controllable time. If you wait until the end of the day to do the most important things (pray, be with your family, exercise, etc.), it will probably never happen.
- We all have 168 hours in the week, but we don’t always have control of the hours like we do at other times.
- Tasks that require the most will power are easiest to do when the day is young.
- People who brush their teeth in the morning don’t stand there thinking about the discomfort of the bristles in their mouth, they do it because it’s a routine. And placing morning routines in your life will allow you to get more done.
- You can eat, do laundry, watch TV, and other such things, but you don’t really need discipline to do those things, you’ll do them anyways.
- A study shows that people who exercise in the morning are more likely to keep with the routine as opposed to those who exercise at other times of the day.
- Track your time. To accomplish more, it helps to know what you are currently doing.
- Picture the perfect morning for you. Is it breakfast, meditation, exercise, gardening, new ideas, taking a class, painting, or something else? Picture in your mind what it will look like for you, and work towards making it happen.
- Think through the logistics. Give yourself 15 minutes to shower and you’ll take 15 minutes — figure the logistics.
- Map out the plan. If you don’t turn off the light and go to sleep, you won’t be able to get up on time. Try reading, writing, or doing what you need to do to wind down and get some rest.
- Make a habit. When something becomes a habit, it is hard to break.
Things I Wish I’d Known Before We Got Married
By Gary Chapman
- Your wedding day is only the beginning of your marriage, not the climax of it.
- Like mother like daughter or like father like son is not just a cute saying, it is true. Our environment makes us who we are. That doesn’t mean we cannot change, but it does mean that we are likely to repeat the behaviors we grew up with if we do not learn and work at it.
- We are more like our parents than we realize.
- Get to know your future in-laws because those are the habits and traits your spouse will one day have.
- Conflicts do not mean that you married the wrong person, they just prove that you are human. You have your set of opinions and believe they’re right – and your spouse has their set of opinions and believes they’re right.
- When there’s a conflict, your first step in fixing it is to listen instead of talk.
- The key to fixing conflict is compromise. That word is not negative, it means that you are willing to yield some of your opinions to what your spouse thinks.
- When there is a conflict, maybe you need to meet in the middle or even meet later, but you do not have to let the conflict split you up.
- Learning to apologize is actually sign of strength.
- Apologizing is an emotional decision, knowing you hurt the other person.
- Real men do cry and real men do apologize.
- If you will learn how to apologize in a sincere way, your marriage and relationships will be much greater.
- Forgiveness is not a feeling.
- When someone offends another person, automatic barrier goes up. These barriers cannot be removed unless there is a sincere apology and/or real forgiveness.
- There are no healthy marriages without sincere apologies and forgiveness.
- Discuss marital rolls and come to an agreement on specific areas for each of you – if you cannot agree before you are married, what makes you think you can agree after you are married?
- When you get married, it is no longer my money and your money, it becomes our money.
- Good plan of use for your money is the 10-10-80 principal. You save 10%, give 10% away and spend 80% on normal payments (house, car, food, etc.).
- Decide who will keep the books, how you budget, and that you will never make a big purchase without talking to the other person.
- Mutual sexual fulfillment will not naturally happen, you have to know this so that you can work at it.
- For women, sex begins in the kitchen. A man cannot verbally abuse his wife and 30 minutes later ask her to make love expecting her to enjoy it.
- Foreplay is much more important to the woman than it is to the man. If a man expects sex without foreplay, his wife might feel violated.
- Sex is more than intercourse, it is a bonding and uniting.
- Communication is the key that will unlock sexual pleasure. If you have never spoken to your spouse about what pleases them, you may have a wrong idea of what sex feels to your spouse.
- If you’re not going to be honest, open, and talk about your religious beliefs before you get married, you probably will not do it after marriage either. You should talk to the one that you are going to marry about their beliefs before you ever get married.
The Wisdom and Teachings of Stephen R. Covey
By Stephen R. Covey
- Accountability breeds responsibility.
- To change anything in life, you must change.
- With no involvement, there’s no commitment.
- Never be so busy sawing that you do not have time to sharpen the saw.
- No one can hurt you without your consent. You have the power to choose your response.
- Happiness, like unhappiness, is a choice that each of us have the ability to choose.
- I am not a product of my circumstances, I am a product of my decisions.
- If you want to change things, work on the one thing that you have control over: yourself.
- By making small changes, you can eventually change the entire culture of what you do.
- Our behavior is a function of our decisions, not our circumstances.
- A mental attitude of “it can’t be done” usually results in a self-fulfilled prophecy.
- Until a person can say, “I am what I am today because of the choices I make” they will not change the present or future.
- Be a model, not a critic
- Often the enemy of great is good.
- The key to life is not accumulation but contribution.
- The most important work we will do is confined within the four walls of our own home.
- The greatest risk is risk-less living.
- Many think you can only be tough or nice, but you can be both.
- Anytime that we think the problem is “out there,” that is the real problem.
- It is possible to be busy, very busy, without being effective.
- You can be a transition person, a change between the past and future.
- Don’t be seduced by your own autobiography.
- Most people do not listen to understand, they listen to reply. They are filtering what is said and preparing their answer, instead of listening to understand.
- Words are like eggs that are dropped from a great height, you can’t call them back but you can avoid the mess it makes.
- What we are communicates much louder than what we say or do.
- We cannot have a public successful victory unless we first have a private successful victory.
- Management works on the system while leadership works in the system.
- How you treat the individual determine how you’ll treat the many because ultimately the many are individuals.
- In relationships, the little things are big things.
- Find your voice and help other people find their’s.
- Undisciplined people become slaves of their emotions and feelings.
- If you want to be trusted, be trustworthy.
- People usually trust people whose lives are found on solid principles. Character makes trustworthy.
- Trust is a glue in life, and it holds relationships together.
- To change ourselves, we must first change our perception.
- We are what we repeatedly do.
- Plans are worthless, but planning is invaluable – Peter Drucker
The Missions Addiction
By David Shibley
- We tend to think that the only people who should be involved in missions are people who are interested in missions, but the fact is that every Christian has a part in the great commission. In fact, the great commission is the great adventure of Christianity. — Ron Luce
- Let me ask you point-blank: is your heart still wrapped around lesser things? When is it going to end? When will your priorities line up with God‘s priorities? When?
- Tell the students to give up their small ambitions and come eastward to preach the gospel of Christ! — Francis Xavier
- The spirit of Christ is the spirit of missions, and the nearer we get to Him, the more intensely Missionary we become. – Henry Martin
- If there are indeed 3,884 billion unsaved individuals destined for eternal separation from God, our lives become bigger and more significant than utility bills and relational problems. – Larry Stockstill
- In view of the constraining memories of the cross of Christ and the love wherewith He has loved us, let us rise and resolve, at whatever cost of self-denial, that live or die, we shall live or die for the evangelization of the world in our day. – John R. Mott
- How tragic that we send people to seminary who are on fire but feel unprepared. Three years later, they feel prepared, but too often the fire has been doused.
- In the eyes of most unbelievers we seem like Jonah – not really wanting the unrighteous to find forgiveness. We seem to be enjoy thundering God‘s judgment.
- If we truly want to see the social order redeemed and morality restored, we had better get back to seeing people redeemed and restored.
- While we might view Jonah’s actions as somewhat deranged, his attitude mirrors that of many more who are more concerned with their own shade and shelter then the impending doom of the city. A love of the world has short circuited love for the world.
- Our hearts have room for only one all-embracing devotion, and we can cleave to only one Lord. – Dietrich Bonhoeffer
- Will you trade the “American dream” for God’s dream?
- There is indeed a Christ to live for, and there is a cause worth dying for.
- Winston Churchill defined a fanatic as “someone who can’t change his mind and won’t change the subject.”
- God is ready and willing to give you a fresh baptism of compassion. He wants to perform “eye surgery” so you can see once again with clarity, sharpness and focus. Are you willing for the surgery?
- I have known those who so enshrined family life and were so protective of “quality time” that the children never saw in their parents the kind of consuming love that made their parents’ faith attractive to them. Some have lost their children, not because they weren’t at their soccer games or didn’t take family vacations, but because they never transmitted a loyalty to Jesus that went deep enough to interrupt personal preferences.
- God put you here on purpose – His purpose. Get in hot pursuit of the reason why Jesus took hold of you.
Give me the love that leads the way
The faith that nothing can dismay,
The hope no disappointments tire,
The passion that will burn like fire.
Let me not sink to be a clod;
Make me Thy fuel, Flame of God.
- Long before Jim Elliot laid down his life in the jungles of Ecuador, he built an altar of consecration in his dorm room one night at Wheaton College. On the altar he offered the carcasses of “success” and a “balanced life.” Journaling what he felt that night in 1948, he wrote: “God, I pray Thee, light these idle sticks of my life and may I burn for Thee. Consume my life, my God, for it is Thine. I seek not a long life, but a full one, like You, Lord Jesus.”
- The church is God‘s instrument to communicate the message of Christ to the people of the world, and the local church is his primary instrument. – Larry Reesor
- Jesus left us a Great Commission, not a limited contract with America. – Chuck Swindoll
- The church should give at least 10% of it income to missions as a moral minimum. I frankly cannot understand how some pastors can so passionately exhort their members to tithe when the church itself doesn’t tithe! For almost any church in affluent America, 10% to missions should be a moral minimum. Many churches see a tithe of the general income as a starting point, adding faith promises on top of that.
- An indigenous church is self-governing, self-supporting, self-propagating and self-missionizing (be a missionary sending force itself).
- What Tertullian wrote to secular authorities in the second century: “Your cruelty does not profit you, however exquisite. Instead, it tempts people to our sect. As often as you mow us down, the more we grow in number. The blood of the martyrs is the seed of the church… We have filled all you have – cities, islands, forts, towns, assembly halls, even military camps, tribes, town councils, the palace, senate, and forum. We have left you nothing but the temples.
- According to missions statistician David Barrett, one in every two hundred Christians living today can expect to be murdered. “Martyrdom has been a standard accompaniment of Christian mission because Christians inevitably arouse hostilities, and they pay the price,” says Barrett. This ultimate gift to Jesus remains, in Ed Silvoso‘s words, “a possibility of standby” for every follower of Christ.
- The Bible says that God keeps a record of our tears (Ps 56:8.). If tears are precious to God, how much more precious must be the blood of the martyrs.
- Mincaye, one of the Waodani Indians that killed missionaries Jim Elliot and Steve Saint, gave this testimony: “When I killed Steve’s father, I didn’t know better. No one told us that he had come to show us God’s trail. My heart was black and sick in sin. But I heard [that] God sent His own Son, His blood dripping and dripping. He washed my heart clean… Now I see you God-followers from all over [the world]. I see well my brothers and sisters that God‘s blood has washed your hearts, too. Go speak [about God] all over the world. Let’s take many with us to God’s place in Heaven.”
- He who has no vision of eternity will never get a true hold of time. – Thomas Carlyle
- The first part of the commission – preaching the gospel to every person – is doable in our lifetime. We have enough money to do it, if we will allocate it. We have the human resources, if we will deploy them. The greater issue, greater than the need for money or manpower, is if we have the will.
- World evangelization? Every tribe and nation? It can be done! Why? Because we have an Almighty Christ.
- If you are not taking advantage of opportunities to share your faith where you are right now, it is very unlikely that an airplane ticket and a visa to another country will automatically transform you into an effective witness.
- “God brings us to a point of climax. That is the Great Divide in life; from that point we either go toward a more and more dilatory and useless type of Christian life, or we become more and more ablaze for the glory of God – my upmost for His highest.” — Oswald Chambers
- When John R. Mott wrote the book The Evangelization of the World in This Generation, he sent the manuscript to multiple people asking for their comments and suggestions. One of those manuscripts went to Hudson Taylor in China. Hudson Taylor wrote back to John R. Mott and said the following: “The evangelization of the world depends on the full surrender of every Christian both at home and abroad, so that the Holy Spirit may be unhindered. Appeal to every reader to unhesitatingly take this position.”
- Whatever else you do, don’t die inch by inch, playing little games. Live for what matters! And what matters is the exaltation of the Son of God to the ends of the earth.