Everlasting Benefits of Obedience: Michael A. Jones
There are many journeys that we go through in life. Some are more difficult than others and yet somehow we manage to cope, pray and survive. Trials and tribulations aside, sad times, hard times and jovial times life presents its challenges and it’s up to us to decide and determine how to handle them. Within the pages of this book readers whether teens, young adults, children and adults will learn many lessons that will help you soar and rise to difficult occasions by understanding as the title states: Everlasting Benefits of Obedience.
Chapters One and Two are quite powerful as they focus on two major areas that are vital to a successful future. Many of us invest huge amounts of time and energy including resources into creating and building what we hope are lasting friendships. Like an architect who begins with the foundation of his structure so do we need to build solid friendships with strong foundations? But, what happens when the foundations are weak, the connections are poor, the people or friends we connect with are selfish, superficial and whose values do not match ours. Some ask personal favors and expect compliance without any thank you in return. Others cause us to wonder why we forged ahead and sought their friendships, some test us, some do not use the successful model set by our Creator. Some have no solid foundation. Solid and sincere friendships the author states by contrast lasts for many years, sometimes until the person or person’s life span ends. True friendships are not superficial. Successful friendships are long lasting, cohesive, and strong and include time to break-bread together and bond. “A friend loves for all times.” The author defines four types of friends but first it is vital to understand that it is a known fact that often times we are, “evaluated by our association with others. Choosing the right friends and the proper surroundings tend to help in sharpening our character. We are often exposed to, and take on characteristics from others we find attractive. As a result we evolve in a manner that is often surprising to ourselves and to others. A valuable observation and point states: studies have shown that people fail to realize how sensibly both their character and their reputation are affected by their choice of associates. Those that prefer the company of those who are ignorant and vicious to that of the wise and good shows that his/her own character is defective. There are three types of friends that play a major role in our learnings and developments: The model: this type of friend who has accomplished the goals we have set to accomplish for ourselves. They are trendsetters who have experienced many of life’s trials, and have somehow remained successful. The second is The Equal: this friend is usually right within your peer group. You will never have to go to great extremes to find or impress them. The author elaborates by reminding us that the tendency with peer friends when it comes to making decisions based on your description of various opportunities or experiences is usually to show disbelieve sometimes to the point where they will ask you to prove your statements in order to authenticate your claim. This is called accountability and can be beneficial on both dies and helps as your peer friend validates your ideas and statement. The end result is that you can produce truthful results. The third is called The Admirer and this is the friend who has developed the utmost respect for you and will in many cases and times model many things they do after you. This friend will have your back and come to you defense and will almost always support any cause you created. But, remember that at times others influence us and we must be careful and use God’s assistance in making right choices. Quality friendships are what you are looking for. Chapter two focuses on the dangers of a deceitful tongue. One of the most dangerous and destructive activities to engage is nurturing of an untamed tongue. Friends and others will steer clear of you if they find out that you use your tongue to insult, and degrade them or others as you convey information that is destructive in nature and false. How did you feel when someone said ugly words about you? What was your response? Are you still friends with that person? What did you feel and what feelings did you have at the time? Do those feelings affect your ability to now interact with that person? Situations in life at times you will find cause others and you to speak harshly, use ugly words and at times firm words. There are times when firm words are needed however; there is no reason to respond in any other way that is proper and graceful. The remainder of the chapter quotes and sites different parts of the Bible and stories that will help you understand better. Chapter Three focuses on Marriage Having the Best ends with 7 Key Principles to Having the Best Marriage: One: To be faithful to marital principles developed and provided by the perfect match maker, the definition of peace, wise marriage counselor: God. The second: Take an appraisal of your potential mate. Three: You must submit to each other, followed by four: Pray with and for each other daily. Five: Never, never let the day close on your anger: I do agree. You need to settle all differences before the setting of the sun. Curing failure caused by challenges with family finances and finally Worship the same living God. Chapter four: Does God Hear Me When I Pray followed by Chapter Five: Managing God’s finances God’s Way. The author creates for us to understand this: 8 Spiritual principles of overcoming money related issues.
- Dismiss the idea that you own the money or property you have acquired
- Systematic tithing and offering
- Redefine current lifestyle choices
- Pay off all your debts as quickly as possible
- Disadvantages of co-signing for others
- Buying on impulse rapidly corrodes finances
- Dangers of spending in Anticipation of Future Earnings
- Striving to keep up with the rich and famous
The author expands on each one, which I have read and rewritten in my own book of important things about finances to remember. Chapter 6 The Greatest Resume Ever and Chapter 7 Bonus Benefits of the Seventh Day: six proven methods of obtaining these bonus benefits: Follow God’s work schedule, Invest in spiritual treasures, better opportunities, Firm stance against working on the 7th day, Develop action steps and finally allow transformation to take place. This chapter is the most powerful to me since we often hear others maligning people of different races, colors, nationalities, religions and affiliations. God’s Attitude Toward Prejudice is discussed in Chapter 8 in detail beginning with the following sentence: God’s plan was for all mankind to co-exist on the earth in harmony with each other, and to enjoy the gift of communicating together in one language despite ones phenotype which in many instances displaces variance in skin color, eye of other characteristic features. As you hear and read about the violence, terrorist attacks throughout the world we need to reflect on this sentence and the many discussions the author includes in this chapter. Chapter 9 Biblical Foods for Fantastic Health and finally Chapters 10, 11 and 12 which enlightens us to Why Bad things happen to good people? First, God sometimes allows bad things to occur. Secondly, a reminder that He is charge, third, For His Glory he allows it, we sometimes attracts bad things. Remember that God sees all that you do and knows everything about you. He understands the environment He has placed you in and knew you would sin even before you committed them. The chapter explains in detail and gives us all a better understanding of why bad things sometimes happen to people, lovers of God who are striving to become conquerors of a sinful existence in order to become faithful and obedient to Him. The last two chapters ask: Will you be ready when God returns and 7 Habits of Highly Successful Christians which I will leave to you the reader to read and contemplate. The author begins with this sentence and I will end my thoughts and review with the first sentence in the introduction: You are the most wonderful creation as well as the most powerful being God has ever created. We must all as you go through life take on the good, the bad, the difficult and the unfortunate by being strong, loving, believing and understanding God’s plan for each one of us that was formed even before we were born, we will take on each journey, weather many storms and learn the many life lessons that the author has shared with us in order for each one of us to have: Everlasting Benefits of Obedience. The author reminds us that God shares the most powerful element of our existences: THE POWER OF CHOICE: Make yours wisely but first read this insightful, well documented and outstanding book for everyone of all nationalities, races, ages, religions and beliefs to read. There are lessons to be learned by everyone.
Fran Lewis: Just reviews/MJ magazine