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Affluent Investor | April 28, 2017

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Work, Relax, Repeat

beach vacation PUBLIC DOMAIN

People sometimes ask me how far in advance I determine the topic for each Monday Memo. There are times when I know early in the week, and then there are times that I’m not sure what I’ll write until I start writing. This week is definitely a faith venture. As I begin to write, I am trusting the Lord for the topic. So let’s have faith together that something good will happen as I write.

I am listening to the soundtrack from The Phantom of the Opera as I write. That music is among the most successful show music in the history of theater. I have seen the show in person five times, and I am ready to see it again. Andrew Lloyd Webber composed the music and Charles Hart wrote the lyrics. Why am I telling you this? Because these men changed the world by what they did and produced. I listen to their music, but also try to read great books, watch great movies, study great business success stories, and listen to great men and women because they all inspire me to achieve and produce.

You have read in many Memos that I want to change the world. If God doesn’t permit me to change the world, I want to change my world, that part of the world with which I come in contact. But that will not happen, indeed I cannot permit it to happen, in my own strength. It must happen like this Monday Memo is happening: by faith in God. Somehow I must learn to work and trust in God at the same time.

Many of you write me, anxious about finding your purpose, achieving your goals, having time, and knowing the will of God. I commend you for your concern, but you can’t find or achieve these things through your own intelligence or energy. Relax!  How can you do that while still putting forth effort?  I am thinking of the verse that states: “This is the word of the LORD to Zerubbabel: ‘Not by might nor by power, but by my Spirit,’ says the LORD Almighty” (Zechariah 4:6).

I also recall what the psalmist wrote: “Unless the LORD builds the house, its builders labor in vain. Unless the LORD watches over the city, the watchmen stand guard in vain. In vain you rise early and stay up late, toiling for food to eat – for he grants sleep to those he loves” (Psalm 127:1-2).

I encourage you to seek the Lord for your purpose this coming week. Work hard to achieve your goals.  Take some intermediate steps that will equip you for your ultimate success in something significant in the years to come. While you’re seeking and working, however, I recommend that you learn to relax. That’s right: work and relax. Those two things can only make sense together in a faith context, where you are working like everything depends on you and trusting God like everything depends on Him.

If you can learn to do that, then you will have found the secret of success. Your life will unfold like this Monday Memo and God will use you and who you are to accomplish His will. I want to write, teach, and build just like I wrote this Memo: trusting in God to work with and through me. I hope you will do the same. Have a great week!

 

Article originally published on The Monday Memo.

John Stanko was born in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania and attended Duquesne University where he received his bachelor’s and master’s degrees in economics in 1972 and 1974 respectively.

Since then, John has served as an administrator, teacher, consultant, author, and pastor in his professional career. He holds a second master’s degree in pastoral ministries, and earned his Doctor of Ministry from Reformed Presbyterian Theological Seminary in Pittsburgh in 2011.

John founded a personal and leadership development company, called PurposeQuest, in 2001 and today travels the world to speak, consult and inspire leaders and people everywhere. From 2001-2008, he spent six months a year in Africa and still enjoys visiting and working on that continent, while teaching for Geneva College’s Masters of Organizational Leadership and the Center for Urban Biblical Ministry in his hometown of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. Most recently, John founded Urban Press, a publishing service designed to tell stories of the city, from the city and to the city.

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