Wednesday, December 23, 2015

Be. Pray. Give.

I am a marketing guy so my mind works in ways that are different from the norm.  I like to take something complicated and break it down to a simple, straightforward, easy to understand, bite sized capsule.

I remember one time I was working with a client who had a business cleaning and filtering the air in homes and businesses.  His system was high tech, complicated and way to hard to communicate within the context of a :30 or even a :60 commercial for the radio.  To make matters worse, he could only afford a schedule of :10's.  Yikes.  We took his complicated message and broke it down to three words and commercials went something like this:

(You heard the sound of someone wheezing / trying to breath)

Air. Quality. Matters.

(Cough)

Call (advertiser) at (phone number) or visit them online at (web-address).

Simple, yet very effective.

Jesus was a MASTER at this concept.  When He was asked what was the greatest commandment of all (out of the 600+ laws that we in place) Jesus simply replied:  Love the Lord your God with all your heart, soul and mind and love your neighbor as yourself.  Simple.  If we spend our days doing those simple tasks then the rest takes of itself.

In many ways we need to heed those words because today, once again, we have over complicated our own walk of faith with layers upon layers of  how Jesus' simple message plays out in our lives.

I'll never be able to improve upon Jesus' own words but I have - over the years - put a very simple set of words into play in my life.

It comes from a set of verses in 1 Thessalonians 5: 16-18, 'Rejoice always, pray without ceasing, give thanks in all circumstances; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you.'

Not long ago God gave me these verses in a three short words: Be. Pray. Give.  Now, let me give them to you.

Be.  Be joyful. Be kind. Be aware of others. Be mindful. Be gracious. Be full of the spirit. And sometimes just be.  Sometimes we get so busy in the doing that we forget that God often just wants to spend time with us.  Be.

Pray. Many will tell you of their 'time with God' every morning at 4 as if that's the only way to pray (and read His word).  I am not one of those people.  About two times a day I will read a devotion, some scripture and talk with God about what He just showed me.  The rest of the day is a constant, ongoing, never ending conversation with God about everything that is happening.  I pray while driving, walking to a meeting, running, eating lunch or whatever I am doing.

Give.  Give of myself.  My time, talent or treasure in order to build the kingdom.  Give myself away to others because God loves them too.  And also give UP control and let Him take control.

Be. Pray. Give.

Now, go, and keep it simple.