PBI: Personal Bureau of Inspiration: Before Dresser, a Real Dress-Down on Relationships

Well … I studied Carol’s cards as I started to get back to our “PBI: Personal Bureau of Inspiration/What’s on your dresser?” series … but, after the first sentence, God turned it into this:

We’ve written much about how important it is to have, to set aside, that daily time of prayer and Bible study. Just you, the Lord, and His Word. Both of you … speaking. If you really think about it, that should be “all three of you speaking.” And, both of you … listening.

It is just something that you must … make time for. Yes, you must make time for it, as you must “make” time for all of those things that are really important. You may think that you just don’t have the time … that this time doesn’t exist. Ready for this? You are right: The time doesn’t exist – – – That’s why you have to “make” the time!

How often many of us, when someone asks us about our “religion,” have described it this way: “I don’t have a religion; I have a relationship.” Don’t have time for that daily time of prayer and Bible study? Then, tell me, how can you have a relationship with someone you don’t speak with?
How do you get to know someone without spending time with them? It is a relationship, that’s for sure. And, just like any relationship, it can only grow by spending time with each other.
One more: What happens … and, man, have we all seen it … What happens when two individuals in a relationship don’t “make time” to spend with each other? Remember, the time isn’t there … it doesn’t exist: That’s why you have to “make” the time.

In a strictly worldly sense, often, it is both individual’s fault when the relationship starts to turn. However, could it be said that, often, one of the two has become too busy? That one of the two wishes, more than anything, that the other would just “make time” for them. If they would … if they could … just do that … make an obvious attempt to “make the time” to spend with them … how much different … how much better the relationship would be. Why, even if the other person would just “make the time” just to talk to them, and “make the time” just to listen to them … how different … how much better … their relationship, and yes, their world would be.

Do I “need to go there,” to the place where one leaves the other … or, “strays” from the other?
Perhaps not. Too painful.

I guess it is painfully obvious the relationship we are really writing about. How Jesus must feel when we don’t “have time” to spend with Him. To get to know Him better. To speak to Him. To listen to Him. That we’re too busy to “make the time” to spend with Him. How He must feel, that, if only we would just “make” the time, take the time, to spend with Him … how much better our relationship would be … and how much better our world would be. Then, the expected result of turning away from Him, leaving Him, straying from Him … how painful, to Him, this must be. Part of His pain comes from the fact that He knows how painful it will be for us … if we continue walking away … Indeed, He can keep us from stumbling … if we will keep holding His Hand.

How many of us claim to know God, and claim to have a personal relationship with Jesus, yet don’t spend any time with Him? How can this be? Sad to say, but it can’t be. Sorry!
I am so reminded (have I spent too much time around kids?) of the times when I have heard a Pastor say something like “Just because you go to McDonald’s doesn’t make you a hamburger.”
Or, how about this one: “Just because you have a car, and a garage, doesn’t make you a mechanic.” And, other sayings like it. Usually these statements are made in conjunction with the really old one: “Just because you go to church, doesn’t make you a Christian.”

I think it goes so much deeper than that. No, I don’t see how you can claim to be a Christian, and not have a burning desire to go to where the Word is preached. It’s much deeper than that, because it is true … you can go to church … do what is expected, etc., and still not live a Christian life. I believe there is just no way you can live a Christian life without this personal relationship with Jesus. I mean, unless you have this personal, intimate relationship with Him … how in the “world” can you possibly know what He wants you to do? Without spending time with Him, speaking to Him, listening to Him … how would you even know what is expected for you to do? I mean, without this quality time, how will you get quality answers? If you don’t hear from Him personally … how will you even recognize His voice? Oh, you’ll hear voices, all right … I can assure you of that. But, His sheep recognize His voice, because He is their Shepherd. So, how can He be your shepherd if you are not in His flock?

Are you going to tell me that you are going to be led by someone you don’t know? Now, that is what I call worldly living, and worldly thinking. Just remember that if you choose to follow the world, or the crowd, you will end up in the same place they do.

Jesus loves you, and wants to spend more time with you than anyone else. You will also get more benefit from spending time with Him, than with spending time with anyone else. By the way, yes, He wants most of all for you to have this personal, intimate relationship with Him … but, He also wants you to “make the time” for the other important relationship in your life.

Ever written, or perhaps preached something that you hope was also meant for someone else???
If the Word is really from God, it changes the messenger first.
Will close for now … must “make” a little time for a conversation I need to have …

Blessings to you, and your family,
Richard. Vincent. Rose.


PBI: Personal Bureau of Inspiration: Card Stack # 1 and Card Stack # 2

To continue from where we left off … On my bureau/dresser, I have note cards with Scripture, standing up, where I can rotate them, one Scripture at a time, displaying one Scripture verse at a time, which directly “speaks” to something I am specifically praying for, right now.

On Carol’s bureau/dresser, she has the cards laid out, face up … three on one side, and three on the other, which speak to our day-to-day relationship with God. You can read them all at once, or concentrate on just one.

It never struck me until this writing that the two dressers, a room apart, address every reason why we need to read and speak Scripture every day … no matter what we are, or aren’t, going through. Carol has the fundamental, foundational Scriptures which we need, covering every area of our existence, posted where they can be seen. They cover our personal relationship with God, and why we need Him, in every area of our lives, every day. Meanwhile … on my bureau/dresser … I have a specific need/request covered with Scripture verses addressing that particular need/request only. What strikes me now is this: It is that fundamental, foundational relationship with God, which I need every moment of every day, that builds my faith and trust … builds my personal relationship with Him … every day … which gives me the faith and assurance that He will meet my needs and requests … which I have addressed in the “other” set of note cards!

God is so faithful! But, how would we know if we don’t find out for ourselves? It is the daily walk with Him, depending on Him, knowing Him, being led by Him, that proves to us that He really is Who and What His Word says He is. We will never know Him … until we know His Word. That is why it is so important to read His Word, to hear directly from Him, and to speak to Him … every day. This, His Word, is our foundation. A solid foundation, which will hold us up … regardless of what we may face … any day … every day.

It is almost like Carol’s cards are “Stack # 1;” My cards are “Stack # 2.” You can’t go to Card Stack # 2 until you have “dealt with” Card Stack # 1. It is your day-to-day relationship with God-good or bad-which will determine how you handle things that hit you … which would end up in Stack # 2 … the “Emergency” stack. It strikes me now that it is your personal relationship with God which determines how you handle the circumstance … or, whether the circumstance will handle you. How often I have written that it is how you face every day, which determines how you handle the major issues of life. If you don’t depend upon God for everything … then, things will happen which will only leave you, alone, to handle them. I call that certain disaster.

Trust and obey … as the song says … there is no other way … You just can’t know what God has promised … until you know what God has promised! Not what I say, but what He says. You just can’t have a personal relationship … until you have a personal relationship. It is how God gets you through the “day-to-day” … every day … which moves you to trust Him, as you move from your own, personal “Card Stack # 1” to your own, personal “Card Stack # 2,” which will prove that He can be trusted when “the deck” seems to be stacked against you.



PBI: Personal Bureau of Inspiration: What’s On Your Dresser?

I just can’t state strongly enough how important it is for you to read God’s Word every day. To expose yourself to the Word. Every Day. To make every attempt to put your eyes … yes … your eyes … where they will see Scripture promises … God’s Word … where you will see it … every day.

I have written often of how critical … yes-I’ll say it … even life or death important … especially when you are facing a trial or tribulation … to write down specific Scripture verses to read, often, throughout the day … every day. How important it is, when personal trial strikes, to have … in places that you’ll see it … read it … verses that “speak” directly to what you are going through. I know … there are times that the pain, the agony is so deep, that the only thing you have to “cling to,” to “hold to,” are the promises of God. Directly from God’s Word. Not from your friends, not from your neighbor, not from the television, not from the newspaper, but words which “proceed from the mouth of God.” You know that I am not speaking against “Godly counsel;” I’m just stating how important it is to put God’s Word where you will see it … read it … speak it … repeat it … pray over it … constantly, throughout the day.
Wow! This paragraph just “took off” …

This writing is really not about “emergency” reading … but, the lesson is still there … What I am writing about is exposing yourself to God’s Word … when there is not an “issue” you are going through … there is no tragedy or painful circumstance you are facing at the moment … just day-to-day life. Which can be tough enough. I encourage you, plead with you, and implore you to make Bible reading/study and prayer a part of every day of your life. Every day. Don’t wait until something “strikes” all-of-a-sudden, to realize how valuable this encouragement is. We need God’s Word every day, and to pray every day, to keep the most important relationship in our lives going strong. I believe that the best time to read God’s Word, and to pray is first thing in the morning. Often, and I try to do this every morning, as the clock goes off, and I get up and hit the snooze button for the first (of maybe 3 times?) time, I lay there and pray … first thing … before I even get up … I dedicate this day … I dedicate my thoughts, my actions, and my words, to Him … When the second snooze goes off, I ask for His help in my thoughts, actions, and words … the first thing I think of, in the morning, even before I get up, is how to serve Him today … and, the realization that I have no chance of serving Him without His direct help and intervention … See, I need Him every moment, of every day, in every way … or, I’m just not going to make it. Keep in mind this is without having a major “issue” that has kept me awake most of the night … How much more do I need His help and guidance when I am really “going through something?”

I am going into this lengthy explanation because I know people, as you do, who are going through major issues in their life, and they’ve come to you for answers. I don’t have the answers … but, I know, personally, the One who does. I just know that I need to read God’s Word every day, and pray every day. Period. How God uses me is up to Him. But … I have to be ready for any situation … and, the only way that I can do that is to be “in the Word, and in prayer.” Period. I don’t want to wait until I am “in a foxhole” to cry out to Him. I cry out to Him now, even before “something happens.” That is the key. God’s Word and prayer-before something happens.

You need to write down verses that will encourage you, and place them where you will see them often … every day. We all know people who have verses posted on their refrigerators, on their bathroom mirrors, etc. Great! The key is to put these verses-those that mean the most to you-where you will see them … even when you are “not looking.” The refrigerator and mirror is such a great place because you go to these often … every day.

For several months, there was something that I was believing God for. I put a postcard/note card on my car visor with the promise I was believing in … I saw the promise every time I drove the car … I would see the card, then read it … meaning that I was speaking the promise. Of course, the promise came true. It had to! Why? Because I believed in the One who had promised! It was a promise He made … so, it had to come true. It had to!

At some point here, I must get to the “bureau” or “dresser.” My parents called it a bureau. I call it a dresser. It is the … well, you know what it is … and, it is the most important “standing” piece of furniture in your bedroom. It is where all your … well, you know … clothes and accessories are … the important point is that I, and most of us, have no choice but to spend a certain amount of time there, every day, to prepare to go to work, or, before we go anywhere. Whether we are getting dressed, seeing how we look after we are dressed, or anywhere in-between, it is a major focal point of our existence. The point is, that, regardless of how rushed we are, how big a hurry we are in … we always have to “stop” while we are there … I don’t remember much about a lot of details in our home, but I can tell you-exactly-what is on my dresser. And, what is on Carol’s. I can’t remember what I wore to work yesterday, but I can tell you-in detail-what is on our dressers/bureaus. I can also tell you exactly what is, in detail, on our bathroom counter and mirror. And, our dining room table. And, on my truck visor.

Here is the point: For some reason, I really like the idea of the bureau/dresser … it’s because my Bible is there, and I always have note cards, standing up, which I read every time I am there … which is concentrated time, at least a few times a day. And … if, I don’t read them, I always know they are there. I always have a stack, with specific verses to address just exactly what I am going through now, and I just rotate the cards on a daily basis … the cards are always there … they are just as much a part of my furniture as the clock radio … and the Bible …

On Carol’s dresser, it is a little different, as far as the cards are concerned … she is so awesome … they are laid out, individually, covering a large part of the top of the dresser. So, you can read all of the cards at once, or just concentrate on one card. On my dresser, I have the one-card-at-a- time, carefully rotated.

Here is the real point, and please allow me to be used to express this, in the manner intended:
While writing this, I have realized that, in the true “team” concept, I have just been given what is really happening here. On Carol’s dresser, there are verses for the “day-to-day” living … what we strive for every day, as part of our daily dependence on God and His Word.
On my dresser, there are cards, standing up to display one card at a time, which address a specific promise for something that we are going through, what we are “believing for” right now.
But, do I only see my dresser cards?
Well … my dresser doesn’t have a mirror … and, Carol’s dresser does … That’s ok, because my dresser was my Father-in-Law’s, and Carol has her Mother’s dresser … I never want another one … So, what this means is that, often, in order to dress properly … I must stand in front of “Carol’s” dresser, the one with the mirror … which has all of those verses on display … Even as I write this, I can quote the Scriptures on her dresser … I see the note cards almost every day …

I offer this as encouragement to those of you who have a spouse which you are trying to … encourage … even trying to lead to the faith …
Think about it … please … Your spouse knows what is on your dresser … just as much as you do … Let’s say you start leaving “note cards” around where “someone else” may see them …
I can’t tell you how many times I have read, and read again, the note cards with Scripture, which are on Carol’s dresser … Does she know this? I would say that a large percentage of the time, she is not aware that I am reading the note cards … she may be asleep, or out of the room while I read, again and again, the Words written on them … but I read them … often … and it changes me …

I know people who have these note cards posted “everywhere,” and some who have them posted in certain “high traffic” spots … but, I can assure you, both wives and husbands, there is no place where you can post them, where it will be noticed, more personally, than on the bureau or dresser …



Today’s Quote: Faith and Job

Today, we were writing to a beloved customer in Virginia, when I noticed the quotes on this month’s calendar page here in the office.
Here’s what we wrote:

“… God has been faithful. And, He’s not done yet.
Our business principle really is from Genesis 12, that “I will bless them that bless thee.” And, we have been blessed. I am reminded of a quote on this month’s calendar page here in the office:
“Faith makes things possible, not easy.”
We like to say that “When we act on faith, we’re not acting.”
Also, at the top of the same calendar is Job 23:10:
“But He knoweth the way that I take: when he hath tried me, I shall come forth as gold.”
WOW! That’s a good one!
Please pray for us, for God’s will to be done in our lives. To think, say, and do the right things. And, to be allowed to bless as many people as He will allow.”

Ted and Carol