February 2, 2012
Business is often complicated and messy. Always in a rush … scurrying around … solving problems … putting out fires … personnel issues … contracts and deals. Good business owners slow life down, sort the pieces, and then count them. They take regular inventory of their stock. These inventories are a useful business-planning tool that can reveal growth, decline in productivity, or show possible obstacles to growth. Most importantly, inventories guide and assist business owners in making changes for a better future.
The merry-go-round of life is constantly accelerating, ’til we hit the retirement home. Just as business owners do, taking a regular inventory of our lives is mandatory. It helps us answer questions about the direction our lives take. Are we growing or declining in character development … in spiritual maturity? Are we moving toward our goals, or do obstacles hinder our progress? Are we growing in our relationship with God? What changes do we need to make to move ahead more effectively? What strategies, if any, have we been using, and more importantly, are they working?
You see, when we look in the mirror and get honest with ourselves, we see that we are lazy and don’t want to look back at our mistakes. Our strategy for growth is to randomly “wing it today to get by, and deal with the ramifications tomorrow.” Satan obviously wants to distract you from applying any of God’s teaching into a strategy for growth. When I sat and took a serious and brutally honest inventory of my life, I realized the Instruction Book of Life according to Karl really wasn’t working. Worse yet, instead of being the biggest asset to my pursuit of happiness, I was my biggest obstacle. I then made a decision to follow God’s instruction book … and WOW!
Know that God loves you and wants to help you eliminate the things in your life that may be hurting you and others. But before He can help you, you must face up to the fact that these problems exist. Remember … Jesus is with you. He will not disappoint you in your time of personal searching. Open your heart and challenge Him; He will reveal and give you the desires of your heart.
Today, decide to take inventory of your life. Consider your relationships with God, self, family, church, and friends. Be honest. Ask God to help you see things as they really are … not as you intellectually think they are. Face any obstacles, either within you or outside of you … without making excuses. In WITHIN REACH, we call this step Summary Thought. It is a powerful step in transformation.
Dear Father, I confess I make mistakes. Instead of trying to sweep them under the carpet, help me take a good, honest look at myself. Help me see what is pleasing to You … and what is disappointing to You. Help me understand a concrete plan to begin moving forward in areas of my life in which I am struggling. Help me to reorder my life under You and according to Your will. I want to develop a disciplined strategy and not just wing it everyday. I pray this in the name of Your Son who always searched Himself well, Jesus Christ; and all God’s children say – AMEN!
Let us examine our ways and test them, and let us return to the LORD. Lamentations 3:40
For by the grace given to me I say to everyone among you not to think of himself more highly than he ought to think, but to think with sober judgment, each according to the measure of faith that God has assigned. Romans 12:3