Tag Archives: Motivation

Reflecting God’s glory wherever you are

UnfashionableMartin Luther was once approached by a man who enthusiastically announced that he’d recently become a Christian. Wanting desperately to serve the Lord, he asked Luther, “What should I do now?” as if to say, should he become a minister or perhaps a traveling evangelist?

Luther asked him, “What is your work now?”

“I’m a shoemaker.”

Much to the cobbler’s surprise, Luther replied, “Then make a good shoe and sell it at a fair price.”

In becoming Christians we don’t need to retreat from the vocational calling we already have. Nor do we need to justify that calling, whatever it is, in terms of its spiritual value or evangelistic usefulness. We simply exercise whatever our calling is with new God-glorifying motives, goals, and standards – and with renewed commitment to performing our calling with greater excellence and higher objectives.

~ Excerpted from Unfashionable by Tullian Tchividjian

Let every detail in your lives—words, actions, whatever—be done in the name of the Master, Jesus, thanking God the Father every step of the way. ~ Colossians 3:17 (The Message)

  • Interacting with our family
  • Waiting in the check-out line
  • Phone conversations
  • How hard we work when no one is watching
  • The way we carry on at sporting events
  • It’s how we ___________ (fill in the blank)

It’s not so much what we do that brings glory to God as it is the manner in which we do it.

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© Richard Alvey and iLife Journey, 2013. All rights reserved.

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Filed under Christianity, Glory of God, influence with the world, Motivation, Religion and Spirituality, Work

The Real Question

We ask, “Where does God fit into the story of my life?”
when the real question is,
“Where does my little life fall into the great story of God’s mission?”

~ Christopher J. H. Wright

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© Richard Alvey and iLife Journey, 2012. All rights reserved.

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Filed under Choices, Christianity, God's Will, influence with the world, Motivation, Religion and Spirituality, Surrender, Worldview

Do something remarkable

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© Richard Alvey and iLife Journey, 2012. All rights reserved.

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Filed under Choices, Courage, Desire, Determination, Inspiration, Life in General, Motivation, Wonder

Not just another marketing gimmick

I tend to be hyper-sensitive to marketing schemes and usually smell a gimmick rather quickly. And this sure seemed like one.

I’m speaking of one particular feature of the new bikes that Susan and I got a couple of months back. Since we were getting serious about riding every day for exercise and our old bikes just weren’t holding up. we went shopping for new wheels.

We started out going about 4-5 miles at a time but are up to anywhere from 12-16 miles. That may not seem like much to a serious bike enthusiast but we’re making solid progress and can feel the difference in our legs.

It not only provides good exercise but has given us another means of connecting – not an easy thing to do with nine of us in the house! And since we tend to ride in the evenings and live in the country we are seeing our fair share of beautiful skies and sunsets.

So what is this particular feature that immediately struck me as just another marketing gimmick?

The 21 speeds!

In case you are not aware, there are 3 gear levels at the pedals and 7 gear levels on the rear tire – hence the 21 gears. (Once again my math skills stun and amaze!) There is a little bit of overlap but still that’s a lot of gears; especially the lowest gear of 1 – 1.

Who in their right mind would need a gear as low as 1 – 1? Riding in it on level ground is like shadow boxing on a calm day – there simply is no resistance.

Since we live out in the country we enjoy our share of cascading terrain but none of the changes in elevation are too bad and if you keep your momentum heading into a hill it’s not that tough to get up the other side.

But then…

We came upon the mother of all hills! Since I don’t ride with a smart phone or GPS I don’t know the actual change in elevation but it is massive!

That was the evening I discovered that the gear 1 – 1 was not just another marketing gimmick!

You don’t go very far very fast, but you do keep moving and that is the point.

Life can feel that way sometimes. There are seasons when the pace is breakneck and it’s all you can do to hang on. But then there are times when trudging through the events of life can feel like moving at a snail’s pace. But any amount of movement is better than the alternative.

“For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways,” declares the Lord. ~ Isaiah 55:8

God’s purposes and timing are different from ours. Certain events or seasons of life go too fast for my liking and other’s go way too slow. But God is working in a rhythm that accomplishes His good intentions in ways we seldom comprehend at the moment.

When we get frustrated with what seems to be a pace that is too slow, we need to remember that some movement is better than no movement and that God is still working to bring about His good and perfect will.

So shift down a gear and keep pedaling!

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P.S. – The padded bicycle shorts are no gimmick either! Turns out they’re a real blessing in the end! (Pun intended)

© Richard Alvey and iLife Journey, 2012. All rights reserved.

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Filed under Christianity, Determination, God, God's Will, Life in General, Motivation, Religion and Spirituality, Trusting God

No more counting

Years ago I heard Tony Campolo speak about being part of a ministerial association where he lived. Every group has their measuring stick and this group used Sunday evening attendance. So the first thing they did each meeting was to go around the circle and share that statistic.

Tony decided to have some fun and play their game. When it was his turn, he reported that they had between 3 and 4 hundred in attendance for their Sunday evening services. Every pastor in the room was awestruck and Tony became the new guru of that little group. His words of wisdom were valued like gold and everyone had questions to ask.

Then a few months into these meetings someone asked Tony exactly how many people they averaged in attendance at Sunday evening services. Tony replied with something like “37.”

As you can imagine, everyone was stunned. “But you said it was between 3 and 400!” To which Tony replied, “37 is between 3 and 400.”

I love it! How could they be so vain as to think that the number of Sunday evening attenders is the measure of success in a church.

I would never do that. But I would use the number of blog followers to boost my confidence and measure my success. I’ve even looked for the number of followers on other blogs that I visit.

How could I be so vain?!

Everyone likes to have someone reading their blogs and positive affirmation can be great fuel to spur us on in writing. But this shouldn’t be our primary motivation.

If it’s all about God then it’s simply a matter of sharing what He has put on our heart and trusting that He will use it according to His will; whether it’s with a thousand people or just one soul.

But it’s hard. Even the tips others give you for building a following include visiting lots of other blogs to either “Like” a post or “Subscribe” to their blog. The idea is that people will return the favor. But I can’t bring myself to do that.

I enjoy checking out other blogs when time allows, but if I like a post or follow a blog it’s simply because it touched my heart and challenged me in some way.

Jesus taught that the way to confront the issue of greed in our heart is to give stuff away.

So to confront my tendency to “number watch” my blog I’ve stopped posting how many people are following through Subscription. Though it just dawned on me that the number of people following my Facebook page is still listed. I wonder if that can be removed?

What’s your real motivation for blogging or doing anything for the cause of Christ?

P.S. – And anyway, the number of followers posted by WordPress was wrong by my count. It was actually… never mind.  LOL

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© Richard Alvey and iLife Journey, 2012. All rights reserved.

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Filed under Accountability, Blogging, Loving God, Motivation