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THE PARABLE OF THE TALENTS

This famous parable that Jesus used has a lot to teach us about our money if we let it. Below is the parable and a few of my thoughts about it… Matthew 25:14-30 For it is just like a man about to go on a journey, who called his own slaves and entrusted his possessions to them. “To one he gave five talents, to another, two, and to another, one, each according to his own ability; and he went on his journey. “Immediately the one who had received the five talents went and traded with them, and gained five more talents. “In the same manner the one who had received the two talents gained two more. “But he who received the one talent went away, and dug a hole in the ground and hid his master’s money. “Now after a long time the master of those slaves came and settled accounts with them. “The one who had received the five talents came up and brought five more talents, saying, ‘Master, you entrusted five talents to me. See, I have gained five more talents.’ “His master said to him,

TRUSTING IN OUR GOD THROUGH THE RECESSION

God has promised to supply all of my needs. It doesn’t matter whether it is a bear market, bull market, recession, depression, or anything else. This promise from Philippians 4:19 is not contingent on what the government is doing, the economy, or even our own ability. It is a promise from the only source in the universe that we can rest assured is going to back up what He promised. Trusting in God is key. It is so easy to look at our checkbooks, credit card statements and get discouraged. But, God isn’t discouraged or even surprised at what is going on. He didn’t promise that we would never have challenges or that there wouldn’t be times when things looked bad. But He did say that He would never leave us or forsake us (Hebrews 13:5-6) and wants us to be encouraged in His faithfulness. My job as a Christian is to continue to trust Him regardless of whether things look good or bad. It is faith (trust) that pleases God. In fact, the Bible says that without faith it is IMPOSSIBLE to p

ARE WE GUILTY OF JEALOUSY?

What ever happened to the days when people were genuinely happy for each other? You remember...those days when nobody ever wanted something that someone else had..... Oh wait.....those days never existed. Jealousy is probably one of the world's oldest emotions. It's been around since the beginning of time. Look at Cain and Abel. Now there's a prime example of jealousy run amok....... What causes jealousy? Why does it start and how do you overcome it? Here are some common causes: # Unmet expectations. # Many times we place unrealistic expectations on ourselves and the people around us. Often times we feel things should come easier and faster to us. Then when things don't happen when we think they should, we ALWAYS run into someone who already has what we want, and all of a sudden, you feel this surge of ugly, green emotion called jealousy.Our sense of entitlement. # For some reason we have this ingrained attitude that we are entitled to things. Kids leaving the nest f

LETTING GOD DEVELOP OUR SELF ESTEEM

Building self esteem is no different than a contractor building a structure. If the foundation is strong, the building won't fall down. But if the contractor skimps on this part of the process or uses the wrong materials, the building will never last. Your own self esteem is your foundation. It is the product of many years of both positive and negative words and events in your life that you felt deeply and, more importantly, that you recorded in your mind. It isn't easy to "undo" the parts of your self image that you view as negative. It's taken more than a day for you to get to where you are, and it will take more than a day to make a change. But the good news is that it can be done! Here are four things you can start doing right now that will change things for the better. 1. Refuse to let other people fill your mind with nothing but negative stuff. If you're in relationship with people who do nothing but tear others down, it's time to find some new f

DEVELOPING A GODLY PATIENCE

Define Patience.....the Bible says it's a virtue. Yet people seem to be getting worse and worse at practicing this elusive skill. Why is that? Perhaps it's the fact that we're all so "busy" with life that we can't consider taking the time to wait for someone else. Perhaps we value our own time and our own agenda far more than the current needs of someone else. Or perhaps we've become accustomed to rudeness and impatience as normal behavior. Is that sad or what? I think most people would like to think they don't fall into one of those categories. In fact, I think most people would rather not think about whether they're patient at all.....after all, they have alot more important things to be thinking about. Or do they? Learning how to be patient doesn't happen overnight, and it certainly isn't something you can learn in a book. Unfortunately, practicing patience can't be done unless you're in a situation that requires it. That me

SPEAKING POSITIVITY OVER OURSELVES MEANS SPEAKING GOD'S WORD OVER OUR LIVES

Why is it so much easier to have a negative attitude than a positive one? What's inside you that just naturally pulls you to the negative side of things? You read the books, you attend the seminars, you buy the tapes.....and things seem to go well for awhile. You feel better, your outlook is better, and you're hopeful. That is.....until something happens that sends you reeling all over again. It doesn't even have to be a major, catastrophic event to send you back to the land of negative thinking. It can be something as simple as someone cutting you off in traffic or pushing ahead of you in the grocery checkout line. What gives those seemingly simple occurrences of every day life so much power to literally throw you into a tizzy all over again? Negative attitudes come from negative thoughts that come from reactions to negative behavior....and around the cycle goes. And you must know that none of this negative stuff is coming from God. There is nothing negative about the w

LET GOD HELP YOU MANAGE STRESS

Being a Christian doesn't insulate you from stress. In fact, finding ways to relieve stress is important for Christians and non-Christians alike. Because anxiety and stress are pretty much everywhere you look these days, it gets increasingly harder to see what's causing it. Why are people so stressed? Who's putting all this pressure on you? Amidst all the turmoil, if you're able to step back long enough to answer this question, you will most likely discover that person is you. Yup, you're creating most of your own stress because of your habits, attitudes, and choices. So why not just change all that stuff? Everything should be great, shouldn't it? Wouldn't it be wonderful if it were just that easy? Unfortunately for those of us who live amongst all the chaos of life, making changes seems to add even more stress. Ugh. So what are your options? Where do you start? # Spend Time with God. As a Christian, your first line of defense should always be God's