Lifestyle Challenges

The earth is the LORD’s, and all it contains, The world, and all those who dwell in it.

-Psalm 24:1

Personal Growth

Lifestyle Challenges

Do you long to experience “life to the full”, yet find yourself wandering through a modern day materialistic desert? These articles will help you look at stewardship as a lifestyle – your time, your treasure, your talents, even relationships and priorities are issues of stewardship.

  • All Things In Common The book of Acts is an historical book that gives us an invaluable glimpse into the life and times of the early church. If what we see in this book were carefully studied, it could serve as a compelling blueprint for how Jesus intended for His church to live and fellowship together.
  • Are You Living Like a Bucket or a Pipe? Are you living like a bucket or a pipe? A bucket is designed to hold things. A pipe is designed to convey things through it. The bucket holds what it receives, while the pipe passes on what it receives. In regard to the material possessions God has entrusted to you, are you living like a bucket or a pipe?
  • Are You Living Your Life on Purpose or by Accident You can plan your life and live your plan, or you can simply let the flow of life events and circumstances sweep you down the river of time, taking you wherever it will. This is the quintessential example of “go with the flow.” The latter, sadly, is the way most people live their lives—by accident. The former is how God created us to live—on purpose.
  • Are You Trading Up or Trading Down Should we not be reminded of what Jesus said about trading up and not trading down? In Matthew 6:19-20 He tells us in this amplified quote, Do not [trade down] for yourselves treasures on earth [in the Inanimate World]… But [trade up] for yourselves treasures in heaven [in the Spiritual World].
  • Getting Comfortable With Your Wealth This article addresses three under-developed aspects of material wealth that commonly hinder rich Christians from fully maximizing their life-capacity and achieving the greatest possible Kingdom impact with all they are and have: becoming spiritually comfortable, socially comfortable, and strategically comfortable with wealth.
  • Housekeeping Matters The house I am suggesting that we need to be keeping is not the one made of wood and bricks that contains our stuff, but the one made of flesh and blood that houses us and the Holy Spirit. Paul tells us in I Corinthians 3:16 (ESV), Do you not know that you are God’s temple and that God’s Spirit dwells in you?
  • How Much is Enough Whatever our current salary or income, we want more. However much we have invested, we want it to grow to become more. No matter how big our business, we want to make it bigger. “More” is woven into the very fabric of the American psyche.
  • If You Only Had Thirty Days Left to Live The great tragedy for far too many of us is that life never becomes more precious than when it is just about over. Then, we hurry around and try to do what has been left undone, fix what has been broken, savor what has been overlooked, and give what has long been overdue.
  • Living in the Present If we focus on living in the present, we will find a heightened sense of richness and satisfaction in life that will surpass anything we have experienced in our lives. In this article you will discover the brevity, the challenges, and the richness of “living in the present ”.
  • Living on Less “You can live on less when you have more to live for.” Notice that this statement is not describing a forced “belt-tightening” when economic circumstances compel one to reduce a preferred lifestyle. It is talking about someone who voluntarily chooses to reduce his/her current lifestyle—a willing reduction.
  • Manna in the Wilderness Everything about God’s miraculous mealtime plan for His people seems to fly squarely in the face of our well-accepted American version of Christianity. Contemplate how this might apply to how we steward the life and resources God has entrusted to us. There are three simple insights this story reveals regarding how God wants to be in relationship with His people.
  • Pressed Down and Shaken Together Give, and it will be given to you… (Luke 6:38). I have been in the church all my life and have only heard this verse quoted in reference to one topic—giving money to the church or to God. May I suggest this verse has nothing to do either of those?
  • Sandcastles It is not often I am so impressed with something I have read that I choose to quote it. But in chapter 17 of Max Lucado’s book And the Angels Were Silent (Questar Pub., Inc., 1992), he provides an incredibly revealing perspective that will help us to ponder the purpose and end of our life pursuits.
  • Slave or Master Our material possessions are our modern-day slaves of which we are to be the rulers. So who is the servant and who is the master in your world? The answer may not be as clear or as obvious as we might like to think.
  • Stewarding Our Relationships Jesus once was asked, what is the greatest commandment? (Matthew 22:36) His answer to this practical question is particularly revealing because it involves what is clearly one of the most important aspects of our human existence—our relationships. Jesus’ top two greatest commands concern (1) our relationship with God and (2) our relationship with our fellow human beings.
  • The Grace of Receiving For many, the grace of receiving can prove to be more difficult to learn than the grace of giving. In fact, it seems for those who have developed their grace of giving, they often struggle with demonstrating the grace of receiving. In other words, the more gracious the giver, the less gracious the receiver.
  • The Greatest Gift You Have to Give What Jesus wants most from you, is you! This article reveals that the greatest charitable gift you have to give is yourself! Why not commit to make a gift of yourself to our King and to some worthy Kingdom cause that you can spend yourself on? You will, without a doubt, be all the richer for it.
  • What’s On Your Mind The real spiritual battle is in the mind. The fact is, by the time our sin manifests itself in actions, it is already too late—the battle is already over. We have lost before we have even committed the sin. Jesus reveals this profound spiritual reality in Matthew 5 when He tells us that sin does not begin with the act of murder, but rather with the mere thoughts of anger.
  • When Counting is Wrong The issue of ownership is the central demand of the gospel. Are we willing to surrender everything, give it all up, return back to the rightful Owner everything we have claimed to be our own? When we find ourselves tempted to count what we own, we must remember, it doesn’t take very long to count nothing! Do you count your stuff as the owner or as His steward?
  • Why Do Some People Prosper Materially (Part 1) I have heard it said from people I have worked with, “I feel like my whole life has been preparation for what God wants me to do right now.” Could it be that in God’s wisdom and providence He has provided you an opportunity to attain prosperity for such a time as this?
  • Why Do Some People Prosper Materially (Part 2) There are five unique abilities that are common among those who achieve financial prosperity: intelligence, work ethic, vision, courage, and common sense. If God does not give them the needed intelligence, the required work ethic, the ability to be visionaries, wire them to be risk-takers, and give them a high level of common sense, then even if the person has the opportunity to prosper, he will not.
  • Why Do Some People Prosper Materially (Part 3) This unique gift from God is the least understood and possibly the most important for us to grasp. The Bible tells us that there are actually three powers God gives us regarding wealth accumulation. Unless He gives us all three, our lives will be unhappy, out of balance, and self-absorbed—no matter how prosperous we are.