The Lure of Greed, Power & Ego

Too much of the world operates around greed, power, and ego. Unfortunately, I see this in D.C. all the time and it reverberates out through the media across the world. Sorry to say this and be a downer but it’s true now more than ever. The devil lures with greed, power, and ego and is doing a very good job in the temptation department.

I’m thinking about this because I’m already fast-forwarding to the end of Lent. Only a few days in and I’m having dreams of diving into a big bowl of chocolate anything because I gave chocolate up for Lent. Not that I think giving up something is more important that doing positive things during Lent, but if I can’t stay away from chocolate I won’t be able to resit any temptation.

So, in thinking about the end of Lent I’m picturing the devil tempting Jesus. He first offers Him all the bread he can eat—after not eating for 40 days in the desert. He then shows Jesus all the kingdoms of the world and offers it to Him. Finally, the devil takes Jesus to the pinnacle of the temple and tells Jesus to throw Himself off because His angels will swoop in to save Jesus. Greed, power, and ego. The devil tests Jesus and fails. Jesus comes out of the desert and starts His ministry.

It’s easy to give into greed, power, and ego. They play out on big and small stages all over the place. There is one thing that stands in the way of greed, power, and ego: humility. Humility that realizes that anything we have comes from God. He gives and our path in life is to use our God-given talents to the best of our abilities. And use them for good, just as Jesus did. And just as His Spirit empowers us to do on a daily basis.

My wife teases me that I think Lent is the best time of the year. In a way it is, if we take the time to reflect. That reflection should include getting grounded in humility as Jesus did in the desert for 40 days and resisting the urges of greed, power, and ego.

Have a humble week ahead! And eat some chocolate for me!

Into the Desert…

The start of Lent. For some, a time of giving up something you really like. For others, a time to give up something for yourself in favor of giving to someone else. For some, a time to do both and more, And, for others, a time to do nothing different—just trudging aimlessly through the desert of life.

I think Lent is an opportunity for self renewal. Yes, give up chocolate (you can see where my head is at!), reach out to others in need (something I need to do more of!!!), But walk into the “desert” like Jesus did and reflect.

Just what does that mean?

Find some quiet time to reflect on your life. Do you know your special, unique, God-given purpose in life? Are you walking into the desert, aimlessly wandering, or headed out of the desert to your own Promised Land? If you can manage to shut the world out on occasion it’s amazing what you may discover about yourself and life.

Some think Jesus was alone that 40 days in the desert of reflection. He wasn’t. He had His Father; your Father. And it’s a crowd with you because you have Father, Son, and Spirit.

OK, enough “religion.”

Just keep these thoughts in your head while your getting the shakes from giving up chocolate (already starting!) and reaching out to someone in need (top of my list). Get some quiet time. Shut out the world so you can really reflect. Where are you headed in life? What’s your purpose? Are you achieving that purpose? What’s holding you back? Ask yourself these questions and more. Think. Question. Reflect. Renew.

And most importantly—You are NEVER alone in life, regardless of how “alone” you feel. In the desert or otherwise. God, in all His forms, is less than a heartbeat away. And He loves you more than you can ever, ever understand!

I don’t want to say “enjoy” Lent but enjoy it. Reflect. Go inside yourself. Renew.

And in a strange bit of timing—Happy Valentine’s Day!!! 

Jesus Is My Everything!

This is my new saying to meditate on, especially when life gets a bit rocky. What it means is that everything in life—how to LIVE it in general; how to think, how to interact with others, etc.—flows from Jesus. How he lived his life, what he said during it, and how he inspired others after he gave up this life is my guidepost on how to LIVE my life. Simply put—Jesus is my EVERYTHING! Continue reading

Spending Time in the Desert With Jesus

At once the Spirit sent him out into the wilderness, and he was in the wilderness forty days, being tempted by Satan. Mark 1:12-13

Regardless of whether you acknowledge this season of Lent, it’s a good time to spend the next forty days in the desert with Jesus. What am I talking about? First Continue reading