Author Archives: Scott

Press On

Philippians 3:13,14 (ESV) Brothers, I do not consider that I have made it my own. But one thing I do: forgetting what lies behind and straining forward to what lies ahead, 14 I press on toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus. 

Too often, we spend too much time looking back.  We dwell on past hurts, disappointments, failures, mistakes.  We carry a great deal of baggage that serves to weigh us down and stymie our progress.  It is true, that our past experiences shape how we behave, and our perspective on the world around us.  However, our past is not “who we are”. 

We have a tendency to dwell on our past successes and accomplishments, as well.  That is actually what Paul is analyzing for us here in Philippians.  If we allow or desire what we accomplished in the past to define “who we are”, there is no room for growth and progress.  We’ll settle.  You’ll always be as good as yesterday. 

As an archer and bowhunter, going forward from today, I could choose to do things exactly the same from here on out.  It’s working for me now, why reach.  I accomplished this, I filled this tag, climbed that mountain, back when.  Or, I can remain open minded, willing to press forward, seek new methods, techniques and equipment.  I can choose to expand the variety of game I pursue, the competitions I attend, the mountains I climb.  In doing so, I will find that some of the things I know are right, some of the things I do work.  I will also find new methods that work better, gain greater insight and become a more well rounded, experienced archer and bowhunter.  I will improve, mature. 

So it is when it comes to our spiritual maturation.  If you are content with, “this works, I accomplished this in the past, this is who I am”, what possible hope for growth and greater intimate understanding of our Lord can one possibly hope for?  Answer… NONE!  Press on!  Have a blessed weekend.

In full pursuit of the greatest Trophy,

Scott Pace   

How Are You Doing?

1 Timothy 6:1,2 (ESV) Let all who are under a yoke as bond servants regard their own masters as worthy of all honor, so that the name of God and the teaching may not be reviled. Those who have believing masters must not be disrespectful on the ground that they are brothers; rather they must serve all the better since those who benefit by their good service are believers and beloved.  Teach and urge these things. 

How do you approach work?  How do you view your boss(es)?  How do you engage with your coworkers, customers or any others you have daily contact with?  Is how those you work with see you how Jesus would like to be seen?  

This is a very convicting passage for me.  I can very humbly admit the answers to the above questions are not always positive.  I, like most of you I imagine, have my moments.  Moments where I lose my patience, temper and certainly lack in the grace department.  I have moments where I get caught up in running the job, or worse yet, the boss down.  This happens on rarer occasions, as a grow and mature in faith, but it still happens.  Bottom line, it shouldn’t.  

In moments where my “self” gets in the way of The Spirit, the measure of negative impact is hard to quantify.  Self guided actions injure The Holy Spirit, those around me who are unfortunate enough to witness it and the view the world around me has of Jesus Christ.  

What we do is not nearly as important as how we do it.  Ambition is not necessarily a bad thing, but it can’t be the only thing.  If it is, our “self” gives into our ambitions and desires and how we get there becomes less and less important.  So long as we get there, right?  Wrong!  

The most important legacy we can leave behind when we’re gone, is not what we did for a living, what we have, or what we achieved.  It’s how we lived the life we were given.  It’s how we treat those around us, how they see us, how we impacted their lives and how our lives impacted the Kingdom.  Everyday is an opportunity to seek out God’s righteousness and reflect that to any and everyone around us.  How are you doing?  Have a blessed weekend.

In full pursuit of the greatest Trophy,

Scott Pace

We’re Concluded

Ecclesiastes 7:8 (NASB) The end of a matter is better than its beginning; Patience of spirit is better than haughtiness of spirit.

Resolution, completion, is what I believe Solomon was getting at in this verse.  The resolution of the “matter” is more aptly achieved to a positive conclusion through patience.  Pride slows the matter’s conclusion or prevents it entirely. How true is this?  As I ponder this verse, I find myself in total concert with his statement.  Thinking back on so many instances in my life where patience produced a far better end than what the matter began as.  Conversely, I can think of as many or more times where pride stymied a positive result or worse yet, made the matter worse than it began. 

Patience, what a virtue.  God’s word is rife with reference to this virtue.  I consider myself a fairly patient person, but admit I have a great deal of room for refinement.  What about you?  How does your patience measure up?  Can you think of specific instances where patience produced for you a measurably better conclusion to a matter than its beginning?  Can you think of specific instances where you thought, “ah I can do this”, and then charged pridefully forward and ended up creating more chaos than what you started with? 

This is a very concise verse and it doesn’t need my excessive wordiness muddying it up.  So, there you have it, just a short meditation on a teaching from Solomon.  Patience and pride, we’re concluded.  Have a blessed weekend!

In full pursuit of the greatest Trophy,

Scott Pace 

It’s Mine

Luke 16:10-12 (NASB) “He who is faithful in a very little thing is faithful also in much; and he who is unrighteous in a very little thing is unrighteous also in much. 11 Therefore if you have not been faithful in the use of unrighteous wealth, who will entrust the true riches to you? 12 And if you have not been faithful in the use of that which is another’s, who will give you that which is your own?

We have a problem, one of many, but I’m going to talk about this one in particular.  It’s a problem that I struggle with everyday and one that serves as a tremendous obstacle in drawing closer to God and a living a fully surrendered life. The problem I speak of is “ownership”.  “That’s mine.  I bought it, built it, created it, earned it.  I own it!”  

While hunting in Utah this past fall, my wife and I were blessed with making the acquaintance of a fellow hunter, but more importantly a brother in Christ, Mr. Glade.  At the end of our hunt, after we packed up, we swung by his camp to say farewell.  My wife had developed a nasty heel blister, and upon hearing of her pain, Glade insisted on saddling up one of “his” horses to take her out.  My wife resisted, stating that it wouldn’t be necessary.  Glade was having none of that talk, and proceeded saddling the animal.  As he was doing so, he made a profession.  He said, and I quote, “I own nothing.  Every thing entrusted to my care, belongs to my Father.  Therefore, it’s family property.  So Sister, I figure you’re riding your own horse down off this mountain.”  And that was that.  With a smile from ear to ear, my wife got a 3 mile horseback ride and I brought up the rear just trying to keep pace.  She got to ride, but I got something of greater value.  I got a dose of truth, perspective and conviction. 

Glade is precisely right.  Scripture tells us, both in old testament and new testament passages, that we bring nothing into this world and take nothing out.  We are merely stewards of the gifts God chooses to entrust us with.  Glade understood this principle, and he lived it. 

Now, the things of this life are temporal.  They are not eternal, and therefore have little value in the big picture.  Things of the Spirit, however, are eternal and more precious than one can even remotely comprehend.  If we do not manage the temporal, low value, earthly gifts well, would God entrust us with immeasurable precious gifts of the Spirit?  Clutching, coveting, abusing or mismanaging of the temporal gifts is a certain way to stack an immense obstacle between ourselves and a deeper, more fulfilling spiritual connection with Jesus Christ. 

So, ask yourself, are you an owner or a steward?  Are the blessings you’ve received your’s or are they family property?  Have a blessed weekend

Romans 11:36 For from Him and through Him and to Him are all things. To Him be the glory forever. Amen.

In full pursuit of the greatest Trophy,

Scott Pace  

My Rock and My Fortress

Psalm 18:20-24 (NASB) 

20 The Lord has rewarded me according to my righteousness;

According to the cleanness of my hands He has recompensed me.

21 For I have kept the ways of the Lord,

And have not wickedly departed from my God.

22 For all His ordinances were before me,

And I did not put away His statutes from me.

23 I was also blameless with Him,

And I kept myself from my iniquity.

24 Therefore the Lord has recompensed me according to my righteousness,

According to the cleanness of my hands in His eyes.

I have been reading The Crucified Life, by A.W. Tozer, for the second time.  If you haven’t read it, I would highly recommend it.  I won’t go into a book report here, but only mention it, because his discussion of what a sold out life, a crucified life, in Christ can and should look like, puts one in a certain frame of mind.  It is that frame of mind that directed my study on Psalm 18 and what I feel I am supposed to write about today.

Psalm 18 is a reflection of David’s personal expression of gratitude to the Lord found in 2 Samuel 22.  David adapts that expression into this psalm for the whole of the people to sing, as their security is now tied to David’s line, the ultimate culmination of which is our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.  

Psalm 18 is a beautiful expression of the power and protection wrought by God on David’s behalf.  However, what I want to draw attention to is who (David) and why (his righteousness) God’s intercession and protection was provided.  

Tozer talks, in depth, in his book about the lack of desire for the Lord in today’s christian.  He talks about the willingness of those to gladly accept the freely given gift of salvation bestowed upon us by our Lord and Savior, but our unwillingness to give all that we have and are over to Jesus, a refusal to “crucify” ourselves, to be born aain into the new life that He promises.  We want the best that He has to offer, we want peace, protection and prosperity, but we so seldom are willing to pay the price.  

In Psalm 18 God intercedes on David’s behalf, because he has faithfully pursued God.  He has tried to honor God, follow His statutes, obey His commands.  In the onslaught cast upon David, God sees him as righteous, blameless, his hands are clean.  Now, do not mistake my meaning here.  I am not saying that David’s works saved him, but they did shine favorable light on him in God’s eyes.  He made faithful conscious decisions and for that God rewarded him.

Psalm 18:32-35 

32 The God who girds me with strength

And makes my way blameless?

33 He makes my feet like hinds’ feet,

And sets me upon my high places.

34 He trains my hands for battle,

So that my arms can bend a bow of bronze.

35 You have also given me the shield of Your salvation,

And Your right hand upholds me;

And Your gentleness makes me great.

Now, God didn’t just snap His fingers and obliterate David’s enemies.  He equipped David with righteous instruments, He empowered Him to prevail over the evil that plagued him.  How often do we ask for God’s intercession, expect Him to just sweep in and save the day, but then miss the tools and means He equips us with to handle the hardship that plagues us?  What would we gain, in what way would we grow and mature, if every time we find ourselves in a tight spot, God just wiped it all away?  

David is an example, certainly, of bad things happening to a faithful, God fearing person.  He was persecuted, hunted, starved, unsheltered.  He had it rough, despite being a faithful servant, but he remained faithful.  Bad things do not only happen to “bad” people.  But God hears the cries of the righteous, as He did David’s.  When David was ready, God pulled Him from the grips of his enemies, equipped him to battle back and earn the monarchy God had established for him.

Another question, is the only time you come to God when you need something?  David was consistently desiring to know God intimately, to follow His statutes, to obey Him.  David sought righteousness, knowing to do so draws him closer to the Lord.  God was merciful and provisional, because David was humble, hungry for righteousness, and faithful.  Have a blessed weekend.

In full pursuit of the greatest Trophy,

Scott Pace

 

 

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