If you are like me, then January is a great time to ask, “How is 2016 going to be different?” When you search for the top New Year’s resolutions, you are sure to find these top themes: lose weight (of course), make more money, and find my purpose. Do these sound like things you might want to do to?
When I was a school administrator, each year I would teach a class on biblical finance for our seniors.
On the Monday of the last week of class, I brought them all together and said, “I’m going to give everybody a dollar. You’ve been learning this year about how money works. You have until Friday to DO SOMETHING with this dollar.”
That Friday the students all came back with explanations of what they did with their dollar. Towards the end, one kid came up to the front and pulled out a BIG WAD OF $1 BILLS. He started laying them down and counting, “1,2,3…” all the way to $117.
Everyone was amazed as he explained how he did it. First, he used the dollar to buy cheap candy to sell and by the end he had worked his way up to a bike that he sold on the way to class that morning.
The point of this story is that EVERYBODY HAD THE SAME OPPORTUNITY to do something with what they had. And today, you do too.
To use that opportunity, you have to find out what you are the best at. The Bible says in Peter 4:10 (NLT), “God has given each of you a gift from His great variety of spiritual gifts. Use them well to serve one another.” The boy in this story could obviously sell. Once he tapped into that, he received a lot more than just money. He also found his purpose. In other words – he had tapped into his God-given gift.
You’ll soon find that success in life and knowing your purpose GO HAND IN HAND.
Your gift may not involve selling things, and that’s OK. Everyone is gifted differently. I know this first hand.
My wife and I have six kids and no two of them are alike. They all came out as a unique child of God.
EVERYONE IS GIFTED DIFFERENTLY.
Sarah, my oldest daughter, was born pretty smart. We brought her home from the hospital and next thing we knew, she was speaking in full sentences. I can tell you honestly that I never had to teach my kids to read. Sarah was doing it before we even thought about it! Today she is a college professor and guess what her specialty is—READING!
Jessica, my second daughter, was completely different. She was a great athlete. She would practice basketball on our home court for hours. She was point guard of her team, which won a state championship, and she earned a Division 1 basketball scholarship.
Now, my third daughter, Corrie, was great with words. She ran her mouth all the time. In fact, she was too smart for me. She would say something sarcastic and I wouldn’t figure out what she meant until the next day! She used that gift to become the editor-in-chief at her college newspaper. Now she owns half of my publishing company and is responsible for our products that have helped so many families over the years.
We had our last three kids within a span of four years. We were dropping babies like rainwater out of heaven! My fourth daughter, Tessa, loved watching medical shows on TV, so she volunteered to work in the nurse’s station at a camp. She ended up marrying a physician’s assistant, and they are now getting ready to do medical missions.
My fifth daughter, Lauren, grew up loving to rearrange the house, the car, and anything she could get her hands on. Yes, it was annoying to find my living room turned upside down now and then, but she ended up earning a scholarship to one of the top design schools in the country.
Finally, our sixth child and only son, John,—the namesake. John would build things, even if that meant taking something apart first. He could take a piece of wood and turn it into a beautiful piece of art. He built an arbor for my second daughter’s wedding. He crafted our recording studio. And now he is in the middle of remodeling our house. Now when I say remodeling, I don’t mean just laying down new carpet. I mean he ripped our house down to the studs! He built us a new bathroom, a new study, and my wife is getting a new kitchen.
Each of them is gifted at something, and YOU ARE TOO (and so are your children). Sure, they got frustrated at times, when they were growing up, trying to figure things out. They still get frustrated from time to time. Even I still get frustrated at challenges that I face now and then.
God made you and me to be problem solvers, more than conqueror’s, and over-comers. The Bible says in Proverbs 24:16 that the righteous may fall seven times a day BUT THEY GET BACK UP.
We are not a perfect people, but we are a getting back up people.
YOU AND I ARE GOOD AT SOMETHING THAT OTHERS AREN’T.
The Bible says that our gift will make room for us and bring us before great men. It’ll make us wealthy if we use it right. (Proverbs 18:16; Deuteronomy 8:18). It’ll bring us honor and we will live our lives knowing our purpose.
So, back to the question of “How is 2016 going to be different?” We can make this year different by making sure we find out what our God-given gift is and begin to steward it.
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We’ll be able to PROSPER BY HELPING OTHERS AS WE LIVE OUT OUR GOD-GIVEN PURPOSE.
Many people in life haven’t found their gift YET, but no matter how old we are, we still can.
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I tried a lot of different things before I figured that God’s Word was the key to understanding how to live prosperously and raise a successful family.
Two things helped me find my gift: what I learned and what I said.
You can begin to learn more about using your God-given gift and how to start saying what God says with our special offer this month—“The Family Finances Action Pack.” This pack includes my book, Family Finances and one of our most popular resources, Telling Yourself the Truth about Money Scripture Cards.
The book, Family Finances, is easy to read and will teach you how to find your gift and how to use it to fulfill your God-given purpose. Knowing your purpose is what will help make 2016 different for you. The scripture cards are designed to help you speak the Word of God over yourself. Each confession and scripture is written in simple language on a card about the size of a playing card. Not only are these scripture cards a great resource for you, but you can also pray them over your family. This year can be a year where not only are you different, but so is your family.
We will send you “The Family Finances Action Pack” when you send a gift of $35 or more.
Your gift will help us spread the gospel and fight for families in this country. God told me that He would send me all around the country teaching others about families. He said that I would have the chance to see families rebuilt and restored. As many of you know, we’ve begun the next phase of this mission, which is our radio broadcast, Fighting for Families. Months ago, we set out to raise $120,000 to launch this program. I am excited to say that we are over halfway there! Thank you for your continued partnership to help us reach the entire goal. Your gifts are helping us to broaden our reach and restore hope to families.