Day 13.

My head isn’t really hurting, but it feels like it may go there. Kind of like a cold coming on, probably also because I’m pretty tired. I made the mistake of running/walking out in the noon sun, and that just beats down on my brain and the rest of my body, leaving me to feel unpleasant consequences later in the day, or in this case, the evening.

So bear with me, because I want to make this quick, but substantial and meaningful. Short, but sweet.

Well, not really that short, I still want to try hitting 1000 words on this one.

On the drive home I was framing how I would be presenting my message for tomorrow. I thought it inevitable for me to touch on my thoughts on foundation, belief, and being.

Ryan Michler mentions that he has 6 ‘non-negotiables’ every morning: exercise, meditation, journaling, and three others I’m too wired to look at kindle to copy and paste. I think that each and every human being on this earth has a ‘non-negotiable’ of their own: That is, their Foundation.

When Adam and Eve ate of the fruit of the tree of the knowledge of Good and Evil, it was then that they saw that they were naked, so they proceeded to hide their bodies with fig leaves, and they hid themselves from God as well. When confronted, He asked them: “Who told you that you were naked?”

Folks, that’s the closest I think I can get to how we understand what our own Foundation is – it’s our answer to that question – “Who told you?”

Who or what do you listen to? Who or what do you trust? Who or what loves you? That’s the closest approach I have so far when we try to answer who or what our Foundation is.

In the case of Adam and Eve, obviously, a shift of Foundation occurred when they sinned, from Life to Death, from Righteousness to Sin. It is from this that we could say that in what many of us would count as salvation, we are reconciled to a Foundation of Life and Righteousness, by way of the finished work of Christ, who Himself IS our Life and IS our Righteousness, another reason to call Him the Rock on whom we stand, our Firm Foundation.

I know I could stand secure.

And I will build my life upon His love, it is a Firm Foundation.

Anyone and everyone has someone or something else as their non-negotiable Foundation; for us in the Body of Christ, we eventually realize that He is our Foundation.

I’m led to believe that we build our beliefs upon our Foundation.

Consider that most people who actively do not have Christ as their Foundation, have themselves as their Foundation. Therefore, their beliefs would point towards self-preservation, self-promotion, with less hesitation in stepping on others in order for them to get ahead.

In contrast, anyone who has had a glimpse of the goodness of God, and/or what leads to godly sorrow, is led to repentance – the renewing of our minds, or consider, the renewing of our Foundation. The beliefs built upon the Rock of Salvation would be out of an everlasting love that flows in and through us, infinite and eternal; it would be built upon confidence that God is faithful to us even when the rest of our being lacks any faith.

Foundation is at our core, and beliefs are built upon our foundation.

Our being is what is borne out of our beliefs. Joseph Prince was one of many pastors who coins the phrase, ‘Right Believing leads to Right Living’ – I agree, but I would say that ‘Right Believing leads to Right Being’, or better still, ‘Christ-empowered believing leads to Christ-empowered being.’

‘Christ-held believing leads to Christ-held being.’

‘Christ-kept believing leads to Christ-kept being.’

Maybe just

‘Christ believing leads to Christ being’? Not that we ARE Christ, but that we – as Pastor Ronnie would keep saying – We trust and depend upon Christ, and therefore our being depends upon Christ as well.

Beliefs are built upon our Foundation, and our being manifests out of our beliefs.

I’m thankful to you for being with me this far. I felt the need to have a foundation for this message before I jumped into Talent. Let’s do that now.

John Maxwell acknowledges Talent as God-given, and I agree with him. Now, when it comes to Talent, I like to look at it this way.

Back in Sitel we used to approach personnel issues by way of categorizing if they had knowledge, skill, or will issues. I’m not sure if they still do this but in my opinion it is certainly a best practice for anyone in a managerial position to consider. If it was a knowledge issue, then teach. If it was a skill issue, then have the person keep practicing it. If it was a will issue, then go deeper because it was not just a head but a heart issue.

The properties of our being contain but are not limited to knowledge, skill, and will. Let me ask you now:

What information do you know?

What can you do again and again, day in and day out, without getting paid?

What issues are personal to you?

Your answers to these questions can get you started in understanding the knowledge, skill, and will that add to you being at this given time. And guess what – put these three together – knowledge, skill, and will – and you have a good idea of your talent at this given time.

Note that I mentioned ‘at this given time’ because there may be things that you believed were important before, but were covered by things that you believe take more priority today. What you believe leads you to your talent.

This is why we say, ‘Belief Lifts Our Talent.’

Christian, put belief and talent in their place. Belief is where talents stand, and not the other way around.

Now don’t get me wrong: Talent does its role in giving us an edge, or an advantage. In racing terms, talent gives us a lead. The bad news is that your competition is always chasing you.

Belief in your talent will have you as the hare who slept before the finish line, only for the relentless turtle to win the race. Belief in your talent will get you fearful, and soon enough you’ll find yourself insecure and mocking others, just for catching up to the lead you once had.

When talent lifts your belief, your energies will be focused on letting the world know about your talent, and in a world which is growing more and more competitive, this would be so off-putting; people know when people are trying too hard.

To say it that Talent lifts our Belief is like plugging the end of an extension cord to one of its own outlets and expecting power.

Christian, your talent is lifted by your belief is naturally progressive and always learning.

And for us who believe in Christ, we do not have a questionable source of energy – no, friends, our foundation is an infinite source of peace and power.

Because of Christ, we are confident and without fear as we determine the information we know in whatever season of life we’re in right now.

Because of Christ, we are free from condemnation and commended to truly understand what abilities we are strong in, and what abilities we can ask help for.

Because of Christ, we are no longer confused but rather in peace to discover the advocacies and the causes that impact us personally…

Christ sets us free to truly know these aspects of our beings in the present, that we would not only know but appreciate the talents He has given us in any given time.

Now, as we go down the line, we will continue to learn more about the values we add to our talent, that we would add value to the world, just as Christ added value to us.

We hope and pray you would continue to be blessed as you join us down this journey of going Beyond Talent.

Questions of the Week:

What are your top five talents?
What are three activities you are most passionate about?
What opportunities may be presenting themselves to you today?

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