EntrepreneurialSpirit Series – Pray Without Ceasing

Rejoice always, pray without ceasing, give thanks in all circumstances; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you (1 Thessalonians 5:16-18)

We have to recognize that Christ paid the ultimate price and He did it all for us. Now it’s up to us to incorporate a simple three step plan for handling anything that life throws at us.

1) Rejoice  – This seems like a pretty odd request particularly when we are going through what might actually be the worst period of our lives. When things get tough; money gets tight; health fails; loved ones move on; jobs get elaminated  and  a whole host of negative curve balls that life throws us.   We need to praise God .  Just like He’s mighty when we are prospering, He’s mighty when we experience setbacks.  He’s worthy of the praise for all the things that he’s already done.  Do we actually believe to old church sentiment that if He never did another thing for us we would still be satisfied? This is because Christ made the ultimate sacrifice and every need and desire pales in  omparison.

2) Pray – If we need or desire something we ought to pray instead of worrying. It turns out that the majority of the things we fret about never come to pass and the ones that do aren’t impossible to manage.  In  our imaginations we make things far worse than they actually are. That’s why if we pray first, we will have the presence of mind and the wisdom of God to face difficult situations head on.  The energy that we use up focusing on failure could be put to good use strengthening our prayer lives. Since Jesus already did it alll, we should behave in a way that suggests that we know we have overcome.

3) Be thankful – We need to get into a posture of thankfulness before we begin to see the shift in our favor. If we embrace the ultimate reversal of fortune as a foregone conclusion, we may just see miraculous break throughs. Jesus did It all for me and you and every one who will confess Him as Lord.   Without strong faith that even the most dismal situation can be turned around, we aimlessly walk around with a dark cloud hanging overhead. The moment we acknowledge that the power that is in us is of God, we will recognie that that power is greater than anything that could potentially hold us back.

Andrea Scott is the Purpose Guide. She helps you to discover your purpose and to create plans for doing what God is calling you to do. With her guidance you can make your dreams a reality, stop talking about what you’re going to do, and finally live the life you were created to live. Get more inspiration in her books Purpose Quest and Purpose Prayers. Share your faith with the world, check out True to the Word Apparel.

Entrepreneurial Spirit Series – You Have What You Say

Jesus was matter-of-fact: “Embrace this God-life. Really embrace it, and nothing will be too much for you. This mountain, for instance: Just say, ‘Go jump in the lake’—no shuffling or shilly-shallying—and it’s as good as done. That’s why I urge you to pray for absolutely everything, ranging from small to large. Include everything as you embrace this God-life, and you’ll get God’s everything. And when you assume the posture of prayer, remember that it’s not all asking. If you have anything against someone, forgive—only then will your heavenly Father be inclined to also wipe your slate clean of sins. (Mark 11:23 – The Message)

 

Human beings have a nasty habit of speaking every negative thought that enters our minds.  I believe it’s kind of a defense mechanism.  If we don’t hope for too much or declare ourselves a winner, then we won’t ever be disappointed.  This makes absolutely no sense at all because, if we live this way, we will be in a constant state of disappointment and dissatisfaction.

Rather than speaking negativity over our lives, we can speak life. God created us in His image.  All He did was speak life and everything we see around us came into existence — in just six days before resting on the seventh.  We also have the power to speak life into the atmosphere.  Like God, we can call those things that are not as though they were (Romans 4:17).  The Bible tells us the life and death are in the power of the tongue (Proverbs 18:21). Therefore it is up to us to speak life or death to our situations.  We can speak blessings or curses to every situation in our lives.  It takes about the same energy to utter the words, however the negative energy created is difficult to over come.  That’s why it is well worth our while to focus on the positive.  Leave vengeance and pay-back to God.  If we don’t like a situation, a person, a comment, or an opinion, we can turn it over to God.  There is no sense in dwelling on something that is outside of our control.  Instead, we can put our energy into handling the things that we do have control over.  We can’t control how other people think or behave, but we can control how we respond.

Believing that our words have life and power, we can trust God to work out the plans we have for our business.  The only thing is, we have to activate our faith by speaking our success into existence.  Why don’t we have more than we currently have?  The Bible says it’s because we don’t ask and when we do ask, we ask with the wrong motives – so we can spend it on our selfish pleasures (James 4:3).  If we are truly interested in becoming more successful and fulfilling God’s calling on our lives, we can begin by speaking life into our businesses/ministries. That’s right, as King Solomon reminds us “Whatever your hand finds to do, do it with all your might, for in the realm of the dead, where you are going, there is neither working nor planning nor knowledge nor wisdom” (Ecclesiastes 9:10).

We can begin to transform our lives, our businesses, and our relationships by simply watching our words and choosing them carefully.  You get what you say, so you better say something that you’ll enjoy living with.

Andrea Scott is the Purpose Guide. She helps you to discover your purpose and to create plans for doing what God is calling you to do. With her guidance you can make your dreams a reality, stop talking about what you’re going to do, and finally live the life you were created to live. Get more inspiration in her books Purpose Quest and Purpose Prayers. Share your faith with the world, check out True to the Word Apparel.

Entrepreneurial Spirit Series – Wise Friends

Walk with the wise and become wise, for a companion of fools suffers harm (Proverbs 13:20 NIV)

This this is even more true for selection of business associates. If someone provides wise counsel or is on the path to success they belong in your inner circle and network. Leave the pessimistic “I’m just being real-ers” to their own devices. Choose to soar with eagles and watch what God accomplishes in your life.

Andrea Scott is the Purpose Guide. She helps you to discover your purpose and to create plans for doing what God is calling you to do. With her guidance you can make your dreams a reality, stop talking about what you’re going to do, and finally live the life you were created to live. Get more inspiration in her books Purpose Quest and Purpose Prayers. Share your faith with the world, check out True to the Word Apparel.

Entrepreneurial Spirit Series – Longevity

When we start something, I’m pretty sure they don’t hope for it to be a ‘fly by night’ venture.  They typically hope for longevity and perhaps a legacy.  That’s what we got last night’s Diana Ross’ Kennedy Center performance.   Every song, every note brought me back to my childhood.  It’s no wonder she was among the dignitaries that were recently awarded the Medal of Freedom from Obama.

Whether she was singing one of her greatest hits of bluesy/jazzy renditions of other favorites, Diana was “supreme.” I turned to my friend Michelle, who invited me, and said, “She’s still a classy lady.”  Think about how wonderful it would be to have a career that had this kind of longevity…no matter what our talent, we can take a few ques from Ms. Diana Ross that we can apply to our business.

1) Always do your absolute best.  Based on last night’s performance, it was clear that Ms. Ross has gone out of her way to be her best self.  I marveled at how beautiful her voice sounded and how great she sounded.  You have to take really good care of yourself and your gift to be able to present this well after all this time.  Diana first became famous with the Supremes in the 1960s.  Can you imagine having anything that you do last over 40 years?  This is not to say that she hasn’t experienced ups and downs…she has…we all have.  But isn’t not the bumps along the way, it’s how you bounce back and finish.  I’d say based on last night’s performance, she’s finishing strong.

2) Stick with what you know.  In a world of hip-hop and profanity laced music, Diana Ross came out and gave us her classic renditions.  Each time she opened her mouth, we were treated with familiar tunes and lyrics.  She did not feel the need to  change her style to compete with anyone else.  I appreciated being able to settle into the familiar.  There are some people who want what you have.  If you try to change to be like everyone else, you’ll be doing yourself and your business a huge disservice.  Be authentic.  Be you.  You were created to serve a particular purpose.  Contorting yourself to be like the masses (no matter how popular they seem), just isn’t why you’re here.  Figure out what you do best and do that.

3) Never let ageism, or any other ‘ism’ stop you from living your dream.  It is easy to discount, discredit,  or dismiss our purpose because we think we’e too old.  However, God has a way of using us even if we don’t fit the typical mold.  Many upstarts with they flashy looks and big dreams don’t make it.  Some succumb to drugs and alcohol.  Others can’t handle the fast life.  Others just fade away.  Some people are looking for something new and different.  Others chase fads.  But if you find your tribe…people who truly love you and what you have to offer and you remain true to it, nothing will be able to stop you.  God can use you at any age.  God can take things that seem like hindrances and turn them around to your benefit and His glory.  As we enter the home stretch and prepare to finish strong, commit that you will never let the things that man judges you by stop you from being everything that God has created you to be.

Ms Diana sings a Christmas Medley that is a treat for us all.  Enjoy!

Andrea Scott is the Purpose Guide. She helps you to discover your purpose and to create plans for doing what God is calling you to do. With her guidance you can make your dreams a reality, stop talking about what you’re going to do, and finally live the life you were created to live. Get more inspiration in her books Purpose Quest and Purpose Prayers. Share your faith with the world, check out True to the Word Apparel.

Entrepreneurial Spirit Series – Selflessness

One of the things that I’m very clear about is that we were not put on this Earth to pursue our selfish passions.  However, you would never know this to be fact by observing our modern society.  It has literally gotten to the point that we’re having trouble deciphering truth from lies; fact from fiction; and good from evil.  I think technology has put the power in the hands of the common people to create any form or media they choose.  As a result, responsible people are left scratching their heads about what to listen to or focus on.

It’s all meant to distract us from our purpose. Turns out we listen to more of what we believe and discount what we don’t believe.  This explains why people have such diametrically opposed views.  What’s the fix?  I think it’s really important to do what we’ve been called to do and not let the foolishness of this world distract us.  The energy that we waste taking sides and getting caught up in the mayhem results in zero being accomplished where we’ve been assigned.  Maybe it’s time to be selfless and open to what God has in store.  William McDowell’s – I Give Myself Away may just do the trick.

We need to be more focused on what we’re created to do; whose life we will change; and what legacy we will leave behind.  Can anyone say that their life is different because you walked on this Earth?  If you haven’t heard this form at least one person, it’s time for some deep reflection.  Instead of getting caught up in fear, hatred, or confusion, which is so common in society, maybe introspection and time spent with God will reveal your purpose.  Once you know it, will you live it?

Andrea Scott is the Purpose Guide. She helps you to discover your purpose and to create plans for doing what God is calling you to do. With her guidance you can make your dreams a reality, stop talking about what you’re going to do, and finally live the life you were created to live. Get more inspiration in her books Purpose Quest and Purpose Prayers. Share your faith with the world, check out True to the Word Apparel.

Entrepreneurial Spirit Series – Victory

But thanks be to God! He gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ – 1 Corinthians 15:57

I’ve noticed for some time that the holiday season is a paradox.  What should be the most joyous time because of all the thanksgiving and gift giving is painful for many people.  People are grief stricken, broken, or just plain broke.  They are depressed because of lost loved ones, livelihood, or lifestyle.  Maybe people just feel blue because they’re lonely (sometimes in a room full of people).  For many something is missing – they missing thing makes them feel empty inside.  We’ve whitewashed and made everything so politically correct that the true meaning of the holidays is getting lost. People have a hard time hearing that the thing that’s missing is a relationship with Jesus.

What we have to realize is that no matter what season it is, no matter what it looks like in the natural, no matter who comes or goes in our lives, we have a king that victoriously sits on the throne.  We have read the last chapter of the last book and we win.  We should take comfor in knowing that we are already victorious.  As the song in the video proclaims, “my name is victory.”  The moment that we embrace this concept, the more we will feel victorious over the circumstances and happenstances in our lives.  We will feel more comfortable when we accept trouble as a part of life and embrace it as part of the fabric that is woven through all of our experiences.  Jesus said,

I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace.  In this world you will have trouble.  But take heart! I have overcome the world. – John 16:33

I’m not suggesting that we love and befriend trouble, I’m just encouraging us to recognize it for what it is and to know that we’ve already won.  This means that we’re already victorious with the business, the contract negotiations, the important deal, getting the property, or getting the financing.  Whatever it is that has us worried, whether personal or professional, we can overcome it.  We are victorious.  My name is victory, what’s yours?

Andrea Scott is the Purpose Guide. She helps you to discover your purpose and to create plans for doing what God is calling you to do. With her guidance you can make your dreams a reality, stop talking about what you’re going to do, and finally live the life you were created to live. Get more inspiration in her books Purpose Quest and Purpose Prayers. Share your faith with the world, check out True to the Word Apparel.

Entrepreneurial Spirit Series – Your Inheritance

You will be blessed when you come in and blessed when you go out. Deuteronomy 28:6

The video below is of  one of my favorite songs by Donald Lawrence – The blessings of Abraham which captures Deuteronomy blessings for obedience so well.  Whenever, I want to remind myself that I’m going to do more than I’m currently doing, I listen to this and other songs that inspire me.  This song helps me to think the big thoughts required for me to walk in my purpose.

The entire blessing is worth capturing (see below).  God makes promises to us for our obedience.

Blessings for Obedience
If you fully obey the Lord your God and carefully follow all his commands I give you today, the Lord your God will set you high above all the nations on earth. 2 All these blessings will come on you and accompany you if you obey the Lord your God:

You will be blessed in the city and blessed in the country.

The fruit of your womb will be blessed, and the crops of your land and the young of your livestock—the calves of your herds and the lambs of your flocks.

Your basket and your kneading trough will be blessed.

You will be blessed when you come in and blessed when you go out.

The Lord will grant that the enemies who rise up against you will be defeated before you. They will come at you from one direction but flee from you in seven.

The Lord will send a blessing on your barns and on everything you put your hand to. The Lord your God will bless you in the land he is giving you.

The Lord will establish you as his holy people, as he promised you on oath, if you keep the commands of the Lord your God and walk in obedience to him. Then all the peoples on earth will see that you are called by the name of the Lord, and they will fear you. The Lord will grant you abundant prosperity—in the fruit of your womb, the young of your livestock and the crops of your ground—in the land he swore to your ancestors to give you.

The Lord will open the heavens, the storehouse of his bounty, to send rain on your land in season and to bless all the work of your hands. You will lend to many nations but will borrow from none. The Lord will make you the head, not the tail. If you pay attention to the commands of the Lord your God that I give you this day and carefully follow them, you will always be at the top, never at the bottom.Do not turn aside from any of the commands I give you today, to the right or to the left, following other gods and serving them.

Before we break out our happy dance and get all excited  about all the amazing things that God will do to bless us and show us favor, we need to be reminded that the blessings are reserved for those who are obedient.  So ask yourself, “am I doing what God has called me to do?  Am I living my purpose or on the path to purpose?  I want to remind you that there are two sides to every coin.  If you read on in the text, beginning verse 15, you’ll see cursing for not bein obedient.  Without printing them here, it turns out that they are the mirror image or the flip side of the blessings.

One of the things (among many) that I beleive that God will bless us with is propserity in our businesses.  However, when things aren’t coming together or going our way, we tend to take things into our own hand – rather than be obedient to the plan that God has already given us.  This is usually never a good idea.  If God gave you a vision, mission, purpose, you have to believe where there is vision God makes provision.  We don’t know exactly why some bessings manifest quickly or why others linger.  But we do know that we are here for a reason, the sooner we find out what that is, the better.  In addition, the sooner we engage in our purpose, the sooner we can begin to bless the people we are here to serve.

Andrea Scott is the Purpose Guide. She helps you to discover your purpose and to create plans for doing what God is calling you to do. With her guidance you can make your dreams a reality, stop talking about what you’re going to do, and finally live the life you were created to live. Get more inspiration in her books Purpose Quest and Purpose Prayers. Share your faith with the world, check out True to the Word Apparel.

Entrepreneurial Spirit Series – Trust

Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways submit to him, and he will make your paths straight (Proverbs 3:5-6, NIV)

When things don’t turn out the way tha we hoped or desire, it’s easy to lose faith and abandon trust.  However, the scripture is so clear in the fact that we can’t depend on our undersanding of a situation.  Which leads to another scripture:

And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love Him, who have been called according to His purpose (Romans 8:28).

During times of crisis of faith; when we question whether the voice in our head was God’s call or our own desires; when the world seems to be going to hell in a hand basket; when things are seem completely turned upside down; and when we are all out of options, we must trust God and know that He has everything under control.  A firm belief that we are God’s children and He has a specific plan for our lives, allows us to face challenging and difficult situations.  We can stand on one of God’s numerous promises:

For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future. Then you will call on me and come and pray to me, and I will listen to you. You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart (Jeremiah 29:11-13)

True to our human nature, we typically stop reading after the promise of prosperity, safety, and a bright future.  However, we completely neglect the rest. Sure, God will prosper, not harm, and secure our future but we are to seek Him, enter His presence, and pray without ceasing.  This is not a one-sided relationship or or a slot machine that we keep feeding coins until eventually we hit the jackpot.  We have a role to play too.  When we fulfill our responsibilities then God will listen to our prayers.  We will be in commune with Him.  When that happens, the craziness of the world no longer has an impact.  We must strive to have a relationship like this because it gives us assurances about God’s ability to protect us in the storm; provide for us in the drought; and keep us in good times and bad.

Andrea Scott is the Purpose Guide. She helps you to discover your purpose and to create plans for doing what God is calling you to do. With her guidance you can make your dreams a reality, stop talking about what you’re going to do, and finally live the life you were created to live. Get more inspiration in her books Purpose Quest and Purpose Prayers. Share your faith with the world, check out True to the Word Apparel.

Entrepreneurial Spirit Series – Praiseworthy

Summing it all up, friends, I’d say you’ll do best by filling your minds and meditating on things true, noble, reputable, authentic, compelling, gracious—the best, not the worst; the beautiful, not the ugly; things to praise, not things to curse. Put into practice what you learned from me, what you heard and saw and realized. Do that, and God, who makes everything work together, will work you into his most excellent harmonies. (Philippians 4:8-9 – The Message MSG)

Mindset #9 – Praise (not curses)

In order to reset your mindset, you have to think on things that are praiseworthy; things that you can say good things about.  What about the bad stuff of life?  It would be inauthentic to say good things about them, right? Actually, not so fast.  We have to go to the Word of God to determine the answer to this questons.  Apostle Paul tells us that God, ” calls those things that are not as though they were” (Romans 4:17).  We are made in God’s image (Genesis 1:27), therefore, we have the power and ability to do what He did.  When something doesn’t seem praise worthy, we can look for the good in it nonetheless.  Instead of cursing our situation, we can begin to use it as a set-up for what God has in store for us.  Instead of moaning and complaining at every misfortune, we can remember that “death and life are inthe power of the tongue, and those who love it will eat its fruit” (Proverbs 18:21).  The more we talk about the negative the more of it we will attract in our lives.  However, a focused conversation on the positive will result in untold riches, favor, and honor.

As business owners, we can start to proclaim blessings over our business.  We can praise our clients, customers, vendors, suppliers, and any other key stakeholder because we know that people will do more of what we recognize.  If we recognize their good deeds with prais, we can expect them to do more good deeds.  However, if we recognize people’s poor deeds or performance with criticism (particularly they type that mascarades as “constructive criticism.”) we can expect more of the behavor we don’t want.

When I think of praise, Ican’t think of anyone or thing more praiseworthy than the Lord.  His  awesome ways are too numerous to count. Speaking of God’s goodness, the psalmist said,

You will show me the path of life; In Your presence is fullness of joy; At your right hand are pleasures evermore (Psalm 16:110

Andrea Scott is the Purpose Guide. She helps you to discover your purpose and to create plans for doing what God is calling you to do. With her guidance you can make your dreams a reality, stop talking about what you’re going to do, and finally live the life you were created to live. Get more inspiration in her books Purpose Quest and Purpose Prayers. Share your faith with the world, check out True to the Word Apparel.

Entrepreneurial Spirit Series – Think on The Best

Summing it all up, friends, I’d say you’ll do best by filling your minds and meditating on things true, noble, reputable, authentic, compelling, gracious—the best, not the worst; the beautiful, not the ugly; things to praise, not things to curse. Put into practice what you learned from me, what you heard and saw and realized. Do that, and God, who makes everything work together, will work you into his most excellent harmonies. (Philippians 4:8-9 – The Message MSG)

Mindset #7 – the best (not the worst)

It is so easy to allow ourselves to go down the rabbit hole of stinking thinking.  We don’t have to try real hard to let our minds slip to the most worrisome thoughts.  If we aren’t very careful, our thoughts can go off the rails and land head first into a dumpster filled with the most vile and horrific imaginations.  The thing about thinking is that we build up situations to be far worse than they actually are.  We start with a fragment of a thought and before we know it, we’re off building scenarios and contingencies based on something that hasn’t even happened.  What’s worse is when we go scouting for evidence to reinforce the negativity that we’ve created.  We search the Internet or social media for anything that confirms our worse fears.

We are so creative, yet we use our imaginations for evil rather than good.  We let our emotions take us for a ride that ends in a free fall. What would happen if we took all this creative energy and put it to good use?  It’s likely that we could figure out how to create a viable business.  Maybe we could expand the one we’ve been feeding our blood, sweat and tears.  Maybe we wouldn’t have to work so hard because the brilliant solution to our problems would be right there waiting to be implemented.  Our goal is to think on the “best” not the worst things that are going on in our lives.  There’s always plenty of fodder for the pessimist in us.  However, we have to go out of our way looking for nourishment for the optimist.  Our natural inclination is to see the bad in everything and everyone.  But we have to resist that urge and look for the best.  No matter how vile, we can search for and find the good.  By constantly being on the look out for the good — in fact the best, we are apt to find it.  Anything that we diligently seek we will find.  We will start to notice things we never noticed before.  I can hear the resistance now.  To be honest I feel it myself as I think about those situations and people who aren’t deserving of my consideration.  But who am I — who are we to determine that?  If Christ felt that way, He wouldn’t have laid down His life for us.  We could never be worthy of the sacrifice that He made on our behalf.  So what right do we have to count people out?  While looking for the very best in people, we need to pray for them.  The prayer isn’t God change them.  It is God, bless and protect them.  Again, the resistance as we think about people who we don’t think are deserving of a blessing.  The Bible says to bless them.  In fact, the Proverbs put it this way:

If your enemy is hungry, give him bread to eat;
And if he is thirsty, give him water to drink;
For so you will heap coals of fire on his head,
And the Lord will reward you (Proverbs 25: 21-22)

In order to get to a place where we can see the best (and not the worst), we may have to pray another prayer: Lord change me.  Even though we think we’re not as bad as the other fellow, we have to face the fact that we are not perfect either.  We need to ask the Holy Spirit to dwell on the inside so that distrust, fear, and dislike of our enemies will be eliminated.  The Bible also tells us that God will take care of our enemies, our only responsibility is to them.    As long as we think the worst about them, they will continue to wield power over us. As we think about the best and not the worst – even for our enemies – we may begin to shift our perspective.

Andrea Scott is the Purpose Guide. She helps you to discover your purpose and to create plans for doing what God is calling you to do. With her guidance you can make your dreams a reality, stop talking about what you’re going to do, and finally live the life you were created to live. Get more inspiration in her books Purpose Quest and Purpose Prayers. Share your faith with the world, check out True to the Word Apparel.

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