The 5 P’s of Faith

Spirit of Faith

It has been almost two months since I last posted here at The Prayer Journals. Within two weeks after my last post, Praying the Scriptures, I received and accepted a job offer from a nationally respected insurance company.

The Lord has blessed me abundantly throughout my lifetime. And in writing my spiritual memoir I was communicating how I was transformed by growing closer to God, particularly since the collapse of my career in the summer of 2009 during the biggest economic collapse since the Great Depression. Yet here I am again. I have experienced another sudden end to what I thought was a beginning of a new career to only have the company to completely dissolve operations this time. My reaction to the unsettling news would be much different than the summer of 2009 because I listened to the prompting of the Holy Spirit to fully and completely turned my face towards Jesus Christ.

Praying the Scripture

“If (I) have died with Christ, (I) believe that (I) will also live with him. (I) know that Christ, who was brought back to life will never die again. Death no longer has any power over him. When he died, he died once and for all to sin’s power. But now he lives and lives for God. So (I) consider (myself) dead to sin’s power but living for God in the power Christ Jesus gives (me).” Romans 6:8-11

The “5 P’s” of Faith

No doubt many of you have heard the phrase, “Prior planning prevents poor performance.” Often that phrase is heard when someone must make a presentation to another or a group of people. I heard it many times throughout the course of my sales management career.

God has awesome power to turn the negative into a positive

When my career came to an end in 2009, I was two years shy of turning 50 years old. I feared I would never obtain a job worthy of my past position. I was right. I didn’t. At least not in terms of compensation, but I would gain something even more valuable – insight into the power of faith in God. With God and his angels on earth, I created a job in the form of a contracting business in another sector of the financial services industry. It would help keep my family financially afloat.

God be the glory!

Within seven years in 2016, I was given an opportunity of full-time employment in a related sector in the financial services industry of the contracting business I had created. The position offered learning new skills, stability in compensation, a retirement plan, and dinner every night with my family.

Again, God was firmly in control.

So, when the news came again that I would need to look for a new job on Friday, April 13, 2018, I turned to my own “5 P’s” statement. It has become my personal statement of faith.

“Poised prayer produces purposeful performance.”

What does this statement mean?

Poise: God is control

God is in control of all situations and outcomes. That is, if I allow Him to be in control of my life rather than the world.

Prayer: God’s promises and presence

Praying without ceasing relying on God’s promises and fervently asking for His presence in my life and in all situations.

Productivity: Positive attitude

In my fervent prayer to God, asking for his help to present a positive Christ-like attitude that reflects the power of His mercy, love and peace.

Purpose: In joyful service

Accepting wherever God places me, so I may joyfully serve others in Christ’s name to fulfill His purpose through me.

Performance: God-centered

And in every position, not just in my job, but in all I do and say that I may keep God as the center of life’s work giving Him all the glory and praise.

“Blessed is the person who places his confidence in the Lord.” Psalm 40:4

The attitude of Christ

“So then, as Christians, do you have any encouragement? Do you have any comfort from love? Do you have any spiritual relationships? Do you have any sympathy and compassion? Then fill me with joy by having the same attitude and the same love, living in harmony, and keeping one purpose in mind. Don’t act out of selfish ambition or be conceited. Instead, humbly think of others as being better than yourselves. Don’t be concerned only about your own interests, but also be concerned about the interests of others. Have the same attitude that Christ Jesus had.” Philippians 2: 1-5

On May 29th, a full month after my last blog post, I started a new career once again. At the end of this coming week, I will have been employed one month at this new company. I am thoroughly enjoying it! I know that all I have gone through in my life, God has and will continue to prepare me to joyfully serve with the attitude of Christ. I gratefully give Him ALL the Praise and Glory.

My prayer journal of May 3, 2018 – Accepting an offer of employment

Dear Lord, Great and Wondrous God who is in control of this world and of my life, it is with thanks and praise I acknowledge Your majesty and power. Because in Your steadfast love and mercy You have made Yourself my Father in Jesus Christ and recreated in me the image of Your holiness. I cannot by fully comprehend the extent and fullness of Your love. In faith, I thank and praise Your grace and mercy. You do so much for me without any merit in me that I all I can do is thank and praise Your holy name through Jesus Christ, my Lord. Amen

(Prayer adapted from the Lutheran Book of Prayer.)

May I pray for you?

The Prayer Journals blog is my personal spiritual journey in conjunction with writing my spiritual memoir. My posts in 2018 are a series relating to this theme. If you have just joined The Prayer Journals, I hope you will take the time to explore previous posts on this site.

Please join me next time as I continue my series, Getting to Know God.

Please reach out to The Prayer Journals if I can answer any questions about keeping a prayer journal of your own. A prayer journal is an intimate communication between you and God. You don’t have to be a master writer. Perhaps you are an illustrator, a painter, a poet, a lyricist or creator of scrapbooks. Use your gifts to communicate with God however you wish in your prayer journal. God enjoys hearing from you and you will be blessed!

Blessings on your day,

Sheri

Connect with The Prayer Journals

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Email: Hoot@thebloggingowl.com

© 2017-2018 All Rights Reserved

Getting to Know God Series – A Disciple

(This is the fifth post in a 30-Week Series – Getting to Know God.)

When I was young growing up on the farm with my parents, older sister and brother, we enjoyed going fishing. We never owned a boat but rather we fished from shore. I was never a good fisherman. In fact, the only thing I caught was a hook at the tip of my right index finger from the neighbor boy when he went to cast his line. I remember the ER physician asking me as he yanked the hook from my finger if I wanted to keep the hook for memory’s sake. “No,” I whimpered, “I think I will remember this day even without the hook.”

Lake of Gennesaret

“One day as Jesus was standing by the Lake of Gennesaret, the people were crowding around him and listening to the word of God. 2 He saw at the water’s edge two boats, left there by the fishermen, who were washing their nets. 3 He got into one of the boats, the one belonging to Simon, and asked him to put out a little from shore. Then he sat down and taught the people from the boat.
4 When he had finished speaking, he said to Simon, “Put out into deep water, and let down the nets for a catch.”
5 Simon answered, “Master, we’ve worked hard all night and haven’t caught anything. But because you say so, I will let down the nets.”
6 When they had done so, they caught such a large number of fish that their nets began to break. 7 So they signaled their partners in the other boat to come and help them, and they came and filled both boats so full that they began to sink.” Luke 5:1-6

Listening as a Disciple

As a disciple of Christ, I had doubts about how successful I could be in business for myself. But God led me to believe that I could be and how He did this is still quite extraordinary when I think about it. Because it wasn’t my success in dollars and cents that I would be successful, but the interactions I had with prospective clients and their customers.

After concluding an appointment early in the beginning of starting my business, I was straightening up a borrowed office. When I was walking toward the door, the gentleman who at my appointment came back into the office. He said, “May I ask you a personal question?” I said, “sure.”

He asked, “Are you a Christian?” Somewhat taken aback, I thought he must have seen I was wearing a gold cross necklace. “Yes, I am,” I answered not knowing where this conversation was going to lead.

He said, “I knew you were. You were so kind and helpful during our appointment.” As he turned to leave with his wife and somewhat speechless, I thanked him for coming back to share that with me and wished them a good rest of the day.

I flew home with the biggest smile on face that afternoon praising God letting Him know, I knew He needed me to believe I was on the right track.

Believing as a Disciple

Philip, like Andrew and Peter, was from the town of Bethsaida. 45 Philip found Nathanael and told him, “We have found the one Moses wrote about in the Law, and about whom the prophets also wrote—Jesus of Nazareth, the son of Joseph.”
46 “Nazareth! Can anything good come from there?” Nathanael asked.
“Come and see,” said Philip.
47 When Jesus saw Nathanael approaching, he said of him, “Here truly is an Israelite in whom there is no deceit.”
48 “How do you know me?” Nathanael asked.
Jesus answered, “I saw you while you were still under the fig tree before Philip called you.”
49 Then Nathanael declared, “Rabbi, you are the Son of God; you are the king of Israel.”
50 Jesus said, “You believe because I told you I saw you under the fig tree. You will see greater things than that.” 51 He then added, “Very truly I tell you, you will see ‘heaven open, and the angels of God ascending and descending on’ the Son of Man.” John 1:43-51

Christ wasn’t the only one that saw me as a disciple, but my conduct with this customer caused him to believe it too. This experience had shown me that I needed to believe how my faith can make a difference in the lives of others.

Although not all my interactions were as friendly as this one. On another occasion during an appointment with two women, I remained silent and went about conducting the appointment in a professional manner. They had obviously seen my gold cross necklace and made snide comments about how “the light should remain under the basket.” The implication coming from the verse, Mark 4:21-23 “21 He said to them, “Do you bring in a lamp to put it under a bowl or a bed? Instead, don’t you put it on its stand? 22 For whatever is hidden is meant to be disclosed, and whatever is concealed is meant to be brought out into the open. 23 If anyone has ears to hear, let them hear.”

Thankfully and unfortunately for these two women who obviously failed to read Christ’s words further, Mark 4:24-25 “24 “Consider carefully what you hear,” he continued. “With the measure you use, it will be measured to you—and even more. 25 Whoever has will be given more; whoever does not have, even what they have will be taken from them.”

The encounter with these two women left me shaken and sad. So much so, I spent the rest of the day in prayer. I was shocked by women’s brazen ridicule of me even though they had never met me before. These were professional women in the legal field, but God was with me. I did not show emotion nor bend to their conversation. God handled the situation and through prayer I realized that God was there to handle whatever my situation. As in my fledgling new business or in my personal life, situations arise – good and bad, encouraging and discouraging – I just needed Him to remain in control.

Marie

A Prayer from My Journal

Lord of my life, my life is not my own by yours. Help me to live under Your direction and ready to hear Your call, “Follow Me.”

Lord of my life, You control the night and day. Help me to be aware of Your presence and knowing that I have the gift of Your Spirit.

Lord of my Life, You are the Giver of all good things. My prayer is to surrender to Your care and directions so that others may receive Your love and mercy through me, your disciple.

Lord of my Life, when life becomes difficult and I become tired or afraid. Help me not to speak irrationally or make selfish mistakes. Help me to see, feel, and know Your love, forgiveness and mercy are there for me. Use me despite my reluctance and doubt.

Lord of my life, walk ahead of me so I may not be afraid to follow, fall and follow again. I pray this all Lord in Jesus’ name. Amen

May I pray for you?

The Prayer Journals are my personal spiritual journey in conjunction with writing my spiritual memoir. My posts in 2018 are a series relating to this theme. If you have just joined The Prayer Journals, I hope you will take the time to explore previous posts on this site.

Please reach out to The Prayer Journals if I can answer any questions about keeping a prayer journal of your own. A prayer journal is an intimate communication between you and God. You don’t have to be a master writer. Perhaps you are an illustrator, a painter, a poet, a lyricist or creator of scrapbooks. Use your gifts to communicate with God, however you wish in your prayer journal.

Blessings on your day,

Sheri

P.S. I am a week behind in my 30-week series due to my dog, Barkley LeRoy having back surgery. He is doing great and I praise God that my faithful fur-companion will be back at his “editing” desk soon. I will do my best to catch up this week.

Connect with The Prayer Journals

Facebook:                 Facebook/ThePrayerJournals/PrayerPrompts
Twitter:                    @PrayerPrompts
Email:                       Hoot@thebloggingowl.com

 

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