Category Archives for "Inspirational"
inspirational people and stories
inspirational people and stories
Sharing Your Light
It’s hard for me to let my light shine when all I’ve ever known was darkness. My humor, my personality, heck my whole demeanor has always exuded darkness. That is until I accepted Jesus Christ into my heart. So now when you see me shine, it’s not really me. I’m only reflecting the light that’s inside of me.
“…Let your light shine before others, that they may see your good deeds and glorify your Father in heaven.” – Matthew 5:16, NIV
Robert had been active daily on Facebook for years. He often posted photos about the adventures he was going with his kids, how much he loved his wife, and what he was doing for his community.
When Robert was injured in a job accident, he knew he’d probably never work in construction again. He’d loved the joy of working with his hands and he was disappointed that he’d have to start his career over.
A Facebook friend reached out to Robert to let him know about a small, local organization was starting up. The organization would be focused on reaching out to at-risk teens.
So, Robert went to meet with the director. “As soon as Brett suggested you, I wanted to meet with you,” the director explained. “I’ve been following your posts on Facebook for a while and I know you’re the kind of mentor we need here.”
Although Robert hadn’t known it at the time, the posts about his family and his community were broadcasting his faith. He was delighted when the organization’s director offered him a job, provided he completed a training period.
God, help me to remember that everything I do online is a reflection of You. I want that reflection to be encouraging and uplifting. In Jesus’ name, Amen.
He Hears Our Prayers
Have you ever wonder if God hears our prayers? I know I have, consider this:
“This is the confidence we have in approaching God: that if we ask anything according to his will, he hears us.” – 1 John 5:14, NIV
David was a webmaster for his local church. When he asked if anyone wanted a prayer requests page so church members could share their needs and praises, he was surprised at the number of people who loved the feature.
Pretty soon, David created a Facebook group and invited members of his church to post their requests so he could track them for his church’s weekly prayer group.
Then David began seeing requests to join the Facebook group from around the world as others heard about it. He was excited about the opportunity.
“I’d never thought of Facebook as a platform to share my faith before this. But getting to engage with people who need prayer even those living in different countries is amazing.”
Now, David works with his wife and two other volunteers. They keep a list of each prayer request that comes through and they record how God answered that prayer. “It’s inspiring to see how faithful God is day after day.”
God, show me how to share my faith online. I want the world to see how loving and faithful You are! In Jesus’ name, Amen.
Showing Local Love
I heard a story earlier on the radio today stating that the number one reason why many adults walk away from their Christian faith and claim atheism is due to the hypocritical judgement of other Christians. The thing is, everyone judges whether they’re a Christian or not.
This made me reflect on my own faith and walk with Christ. I know I’m far from being perfect and know that I’ll never be. To be quite honest I still curse like a sailor, especially when I’m angry. However, I also realize that God is not done with me yet and if I say I believe in Him, then I must make it a point to at least try and do better.
So how do we go about showing some kindness and local love to others?
“Whoever is kind to the poor lends to the LORD, and he will reward them for what they have done.” – Proverbs 19:17, NIV
As an adult, I’m now learning to focus on the love and not the hate. Is it easy? Heck no! But what’s the alternative? Be an jerk like everyone else? Bottom line, whether you’re a Christian or not, we can all show a little local love. Check out Patty’s story.
Patty grew up with a single mom and five siblings. Her father had died in a boating accident and although the family wasn’t wealthy, they had been able to comfortably meet their financial needs.
That changed after her father’s death. Patty’s mother struggled to support her six children. It seemed there were always more needs than there was money to meet them.
Years later when Patty was an adult, she was looking on Craigslist for gently used furniture. She found a “wanted” ad by a single mother looking for secondhand boots for her children.
Patty remembered the pain of going without as a child and she quickly contacted the woman to let her know she wanted to help. She bought the single mom a pair of shoes for each of her children.
Now, Patty makes it her mission to search through Craigslist ads for those in need. If she can provide the item, she does. If she can’t, she lets the poster know about an organization or charity that might help.
God, help me to remember the needy. Let me be quick to share my time, resources, and gifts with others. Please help me to focus on the love and not the hate in this world. In Jesus’ name, Amen.
How Great is God’s Faithfulness!
God is faithful, who will not allow you to be tempted beyond what you are able, but with the temptation will also make the way of escape, that you may be able to bear it.-1 Corinthians 10:13
Trust and wait upon the Lord. His help will strengthen you to do well throughout your entire day. Wait! As you wait let your heart continue to rejoice in His presence. Trust! That His faithfulness delivers. Then watch Him move in the presence of your praise. “Many are the afflictions of the righteous, but the Lord delivers him out of them all!” (Psalm.34:19)
He shall cover you, and under His wings you can trust. There you need not fear the terror by night, nor the destruction by day, for the Lord is your refuge and place of protection.” (Psalm 91:4)
So why do we worry? Why allow our spirits to be broken when we know we are His children? When we know He will take care of us! We know that as His children we live in a charmed circle of His protection; a special force-field through which nothing is allowed to touch us without His permission.
When the temperature rises on our circumstance or situation, and we are in the midst of that terrible storm, we are assured that His strong, loving, and capable arms will be there to keep, protect and take care of us. When all has grown dim and dark we will still be able to behold the sunshine of His Love – a rainbow of blessings and peace from within, a peace that will pass all understanding.
Of course this doesn’t mean that the Lord will never allow us to be tested, but He’ll never allow us to have any insufferable harm or any unbearable damage. Additionally, He promises to always be there to lift us up out of our troubles, because His faithfulness delivers.
His faithful Love will be with you and through His name your strength exalted! (Psalm 89:24)
Point to Ponder: If God brings you to it, He’ll give you a way through it. Great is God’s Faithfulness!
Today’s blog post brought to you by Ian Ccoates of FreeChristianIllustrations.com
When playing sport, we are free to move anywhere as long as the ball is kept within the boundaries. However, when the ball goes over the boundary line it is no longer in play and a whistle is blown. Thus no goal can be scored from out-of-bounds.
God has given us freedom to pursue many pleasures. As long as we keep within the boundary lines, these pleasures will continue to bring enjoyment and be beneficial. If we cross the line, God blows the whistle of repercussions.
Sex was designed to be pleasurable within the boundaries of marriage. A glass of wine can be both enjoyable and have health benefits but we are out-of-bounds if we are drunk. Sport, social life, travel, shopping and learning are all legitimate pleasures – a gift from God for us to enjoy; however, when any of these pleasures become an obsession and more important than our pursuit of God, we have crossed the boundary line; then God is forced to blow His ‘whistle of repercussions’. It may take the form of a nasty hangover, a venereal disease, bankruptcy, a breakup or even a breakdown. When we hear the warning whistle, we must quickly bring the ball back to the field (get our life back in fellowship) before our foolish actions take us completely out of the game. (Ecc. 7:17)
In the paths of the wicked are snares and pitfalls, but those who would preserve their life stay far from them. Proverbs 22:5NIV
When it comes to an affiliate marketing and choosing a program, one of the most common mistakes a program participant makes is choosing to sell a product that they do not believe in or fully stand behind one hundred percent.
As a marketer who happens to be a Christian, this was something I personally struggled with when I first started my whole make money online venture. Although you may be making money, you may also be creating a bad name for yourself. That is why it is important that you promote or sell products that you believe in.
The best way to promote a product that you believe in is to actually try out the product. For instance, if you are promoting an e-book, you may want to think about reading the e-book in question. In fact, some vendors in whom products you like to promote are more than obliged to provide you with a “review copy”, especially if it’s a digital product simply by you asking.
Affiliate programs set up by retailers, like Amazon are a little bit different. Since most items sold are physical and not digital, you will most likely not be able request a review copy of the product.
In this case, you may want to test the waters by buying the product yourself. At the very least, try placing a small order to get a first hand look at exactly how the affiliate program works for that particular retailer. This way you at least know if it’s a good retailer or not before you recommend them and their products.
Perhaps, the greatest reason why you should test out a product is because if you don’t like it, there is a good chance that your followers won’t like it either. In a way, you can look at it as providing a service to the general public, or an insiders tip to your loyal followers.
By not agreeing to sell a poor quality product, or recommend retailers/vendors who don’t hold up their end of the deal, you will be saving other consumers, just like yourself, time, money, and even frustration. In fact, you should be proud of yourself for refusing to do business with an affiliate program who don’t live up to their promises.
As a Christian marketer, I’m very mindful that not only is my reputation on the line but also whom and what I represent as a follower of Christ. As it was mentioned above, you may be making money with an affiliate program, even if the product being sold isn’t as good as it could have been, but you are risking your reputation in the long run.
You need to remember that people talk. If a customer was not satisfied with the product that they purchased, they will likely talk to their friends, family members, and coworkers. They may even write negative reviews online. These negative reviews may cause other consumers to avoid purchasing the product that you are recommending, as well as your whole website in general.
The money that you can make, right away, may seem nice, at the time, but you need to remember to think long-term. Do you know what you want to do in the future, whether it is now or in a few years? If you are like many people, there is a good chance that you have no idea. What if you want to create your own products to sell online?
What you do online now can come back to haunt you. That is why it is important that you think about your future, in the business sense, and what it may entail.
If your dream is to one day start your own online business, you will want to refrain from bad publicity; bad publicity that may come in the form of a poorly run affiliate program that you may have recommended.
Also, testing out a product yourself isn’t your only option. You can also research a product online. Reading customer reviews, both good and bad, may give you insight into the product you may like to sell. Better yet, it may help you decide whether or not it is a product that you want to be associated with.
Promoting affiliate products that you will believe in will not only make you feel better about yourself, but can help to increase sales too!
Today’s blog post brought to you by Ian and Sue Coate of FreeChristianIllustrations.com
It would be foolish to say we love a person we had never met – only a love-struck individual, in love with being in love, would make such a claim. True, we may see someone outwardly and be instantly attracted, but only when we get to know the inner-person are we in a position to say whether or not we love them.
The best way of getting to know someone is through personal communication and spending time in each other’s company. Only then do we truly learn who they are. Before that point we can only say we love the ‘idea’ of that person.
When we first become a Christian it would be impulsive to say we love God when we know next-to-nothing about Him. True, we may be instantly attracted to His magnificence, His power and the graceful things He has done and is doing on our behalf. However, until we learn about His character and His beliefs, we are simply love-struck Christians who quickly declare undying love for a Person we know little about.
We get to know God through communication. He talks to us through the Bible (His Word which is alive and powerful). If we study, we soon learn about His core character and His beliefs. We also get to know God by working with Him (Christian service), talking with Him (prayer), and relaxing with Him (faith in God to solve our problems).
As with all successful relationships, it’s about each party getting to know the other. Omniscient God already knows everything about us (and amazingly still loves us). He has graciously given us an eternity to get to know Him. And, as we come to know Him, it will soon become evident that God is a perfect candidate for our personal, unreserved and everlasting love.
As a business owner, you need to make sure you stay focused on your business or you will get off track. When you get off track you will lose site of the task at hand and you will not be headed in the right direction.
There are a number of things you can do to stay focused. One thing you can do is find what works and stick to it. Here are some suggestions that will help you stay focused on your business.
1. Set goals
Set business goals for the month. When you have a goal for the month you will be able to work towards accomplishing it. Set weekly, monthly, and yearly goals for your business. This will help you focus on them and you will know what you need to do to get them done. This can help you grow your business in ways you never thought were possible.
After you set your goals, you need to break them down into bite sized pieces. When you know exactly you need to do to reach that goal, it will seem easier for you to reach. The goal you set for the month may seem so far off that it’s not possible to reach, but when you set weekly or daily goals, it will be much easier to move your way along to the end result.
Once you have your goals in place, you will need to create a to-do list each day that will remind you what you need to do to reach the goals. Write down everything you need to do in a day so you don’t forget anything. Write them down as they come to you and then number them if there is a certain order they need to be done in. When you create your list right down appointments you have, calls you have or need to make, and specific tasks that need to be done.
3. Schedule your time
When you are finished creating your goals and to-do list you need to schedule your time in a calendar so you will know what you need to do and when you need to do it. If you have an appointment or call, that needs to go on your calendar. Then schedule things that are hard for you to get done. For example, schedule your social networking time if this is hard for you to get done.
When you schedule your time, you won’t forget to do something you have scheduled at a specific time. This will also help you plan your day according to things you need to get done.
Following these three tips will help you stay focused when it comes to your business. It will also help you to remember important things that you have to do. When you set business goals, you will be able to step out a little and grow your business or take it to the next level. The only way you will know what it will take to grow is to set goals, create a to-do list, and schedule your time so you know what you need to do to make it happen.
Post brought to you by Free Christian Illustrations
There are so many bad things happening in the world – the news just seems to get darker. As Christians, how do we make things brighter?
The sun is our primary source of natural light – even at night. Though the moon illuminates the darkness, it does not produce its own light – it simply reflects it from the sun.
Jesus declared in John 8:12: “I am the light of the world”. Without the light from the Son, we would all be in complete darkness. If Jesus Christ is the light of the world, then our purpose as Christians is to be like the moon and reflect His light in dark places.
Christianity is a process. As new believers we reflect very little of Christ’s light because the world has cast a great shadow over us – we are like the crescent moon.
However, if we persevere and grow in grace (through studying and applying God’s Word), we start to reflect Christ’s attributes and illuminate a path for those walking in darkness. Eventually, we become like the full moon – brightening people’s lives with Christ-like integrity, compassion and His relaxed attitude.
Our commission as Christians is to lead people to Christ. When we reflect His grace in a world that has little, it illuminates the path to Christianity like no other way. The measure of a mature Christian is not how much Bible verses we know or how religious we are, but how we mirror the Son of God and His immeasurable grace to a world in darkness.
‘But the path of the just is like the shining sun, that shines ever brighter unto the perfect day.’ Proverbs 4:18
Post brought to you by Free Christian Illustrations
It has been documented that 95% of people who win lotto wish they hadn’t. There is nothing wrong with sudden prosperity; but few people have the capacity to handle it.
It would be extremely irresponsible to hand car-keys to a small child to go for a joy-ride, as it would be foolish to let an infant play with a circular saw or a nail gun. These items were not designed for children who do not have the ability, strength, or understanding to handle these things safely. Sadly, it would only be a matter of time before they injured themselves or those around them.
Our Heavenly Father is not an irresponsible giver. He withholds many blessings until we (His children) have the capacity to handle them without causing injury to ourselves and those around us.
Sometimes the things we greatly desire elude us because God is patiently waiting for us to grow up. How often do we witness the tragic downfall of celebrities who have quickly attained success and wealth?
God desires to bless His children greatly, but He also knows if we were given certain blessings without the capacity or maturity to handle them, it would only be a matter of time before the thing we greatly desired would be a source of misery for ourselves and those around us. Remember: happiness is something that is built within, not something attained from without.
To build our capacity to handle great blessings we must first seek the kingdom of God, (Read Matthew 6:25-34). Then, like the Apostle Paul, we will be able to say: Not that I speak in regard to need, for I have learned in whatever state I am (prosperity or adversity) to be content… I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me. Philippians 4:11-13.