Wednesday, November 27, 2002
Mike is a follower of Jesus Christ, and he's an executive with a large printing company founded on Christian principles. They had worked for two years to land this contract with a major publisher, and they got it. Mike told me about the day when their new client brought in their first job. It was exciting, until he saw what it was about. It was all about horoscopes. Mike looked at his Sales Manager who had worked with him so hard to sign up this big company. Then he slid the manuscript back across the desk and said to his new client, "I'm very sorry, but we can't print this. See, we try to run our business by the Bible, and this would go against what the Bible says."
The man with the manuscript sat back in his chair, dumbfounded. Then he said, "In all my years, I have never had anyone talk to me like this." Mike was ready for the worst. Then the man continued, "I have never seen a company with this much integrity. We'll be bringing you a lot of business!"
I'm Ron Hutchcraft and I want to have A Word With You today about "Risking Everything On A Promise."
As Mike told me about that potentially costly act of integrity, he referred to a Biblical promise he was counting on that day. It's our word for today from the Word of God, 1 Samuel 2:30. "Those who honor Me I will honor." Well, they honored God that day, and God wonderfully honored them as a result. Now God's honoring doesn't always happen that immediately, or always in the way we would script it, but He always keeps that promise.
So when it appears that we will benefit from compromising God's way, He asks us to risk everything on His promise - that honoring Him will pay off more than the compromise ever could. Over 30 years ago, a beautiful woman made me a promise at our wedding that she would forsake all others and be my loving partner for the rest of her life. Well, I have based much of the rest of my life on that promise. That's what God is asking you to do with His promise: "They that honor Me I will honor." And God can honor you in ways that men could never touch!
Our lives, the lives of our children - they're filled with powerful examples of how God has honored us when we have stood for His ways. And more importantly, scripture is filled with examples. I'm fascinated with the conversation the Book of Job records between God and Satan. The subject: Job. "The Lord said to Satan," according to the Bible, "Have you considered My servant Job? There is no one on earth like him; he is blameless and upright, a man who fears God and shuns evil. And he still maintains his integrity, though you incited Me against him to ruin him without any reason." (Job 2:3) In other words, God says to the devil, "You have thrown everything at My servant Job, but no matter how you have tested him. No matter how you've tempted him, he still maintains his integrity."
Can God say that about you? As Satan tries to taunt God with the failures of God's people, I wonder if God can say about you, "Have you considered My servant _________?" I hope your name can go there. Notice what the Lord brags about when He brags about His kids - not our busyness, or our giftedness, or our accomplishment, but our character ... our unshakable, uncompromised integrity.
Job lost a lot, but at the end, the Bible says, "the Lord gave him twice as much as he had before." In the choices you have to make in business, in the life of your family, with your money, in that important relationship, that tempting opportunity - risk everything on a promise from God that He has never broken. "They that honor Me I will honor."