Posts tagged ‘Bible’

August 8, 2012

Guest Blog: Modern Good Samaritans

“As a man was going down from Jerusalem to Jericho, some robbers attacked him. They tore off his clothes, beat him, and left him lying there, almost dead. It happened that a priest was going down that road. When he saw the man, he walked by on the other side. Next, a Levite came there, and after he went over and looked at the man, he walked by on the other side of the road. Then a Samaritan traveling down the road came to where the hurt man was. When he saw the man, he felt very sorry for him. The Samaritan went to him, poured olive oil and wine on his wounds, and bandaged them. Then he put the hurt man on his own donkey and took him to an inn where he cared for him. The next day, the Samaritan brought out two coins, gave them to the innkeeper, and said, ‘Take care of this man. If you spend more money on him, I will pay it back to you when I come again,'” (Luke 10:30-35 NCV).

Sometimes, in life the unexpected is performed by the unlikeliest of characters.  A lawyer approached Jesus and asked, “Who is my neighbor?”  Jesus replied by telling him the story of the Good Samaritan.  A traveler in desperate need of help was passed by the two people who were expected to help, a priest and a Levite, presumably Hebrew, religious leaders of the day.  If anyone’s going to help a dying man, it would be a religious leader right?  Wrong!  In this case, a Samaritan, someone of a race historically mixed with and despised by Hebrews and vice versa was the unlikely hero of the story (Knowles, 2004).

In life and business, the opportunity to extend or withhold help will present itself to us.  What we choose to do in that moment will positively or negatively determine our future outcomes.  Researcher Thomas Tang and his colleagues conducted a study to test a model of employee helping behavior that explored the intrinsic (i.e. “The Good Samaritan Effect”) and extrinsic (i.e. money) motivations of employees’ decisions to help or not help a co-worker.  The study concluded that money negatively affected an employee’s willingness to aid another employee and intrinsic (altruistic) motives (i.e. “The Good Samaritan Effect”) was positively related to helping behavior.  The Samaritan had no obligation to help the dying man, yet moved with compassion he tended to the half-dead man above and beyond the call of duty.

Fast forward a couple thousand years and this is how the story of the Good Samaritan might look like in today’s business environment.

A Modern Samaritan

A woman wakes up from a coma wondering where she is.  A stranger is by her bedside and her body is wracked with pain.  “What happened?” she wonders and to the stranger she struggles, “Wh-who are you?”  It even hurts to speak.

“Who I am isn’t important,” he responds. “Only that you get better”.

*****

James sat in his office—recovering from his daily, verbal beat-down from his abuse boss and ready for a night out with his sweetheart makes ready to clock out.  But just then, he hears shots outside the office.

James leaves the office and sees a crowd gathering and curiosity prompts him to push forward to see the spectacle.  When he saw the couple gunned down like dogs on a highway, the contents of his stomach ascended past his mouth and onto the victims’ helpless bodies.

What he did not know was that the unfortunate couple was his boss and his boss’ wife, Waldorf; they’d been so disfigured by the beating and shootings, that they were unrecognizable.

“How can these people just walk past them and stare doing nothing?” James asked, half to himself and half aloud.  He wiped his mouth as he dialed 911 and soon the paramedics arrived.

He watched them load the bloodied bodies in the backs of the ambulances wondering “what if that was my wife?  Or what if that was me?”  James shuddered at the thought.  As the paramedic began to close the door he called out.

“Wait!  I’m coming too!”

“Are you a family member?” the paramedic asked confused.  “No, but I’m paying the hospital bill!”  And just like that, he hopped in the van and they were off.

*****

The woman looks at him again and asks, “Who are you?” in slow, laboured breaths.

“Who I am isn’t important,” James repeats, looking at her husband out of the corner of his eye.  “Only that you get better”.  It wasn’t until the victims were cleaned up that he finally recognized them.

His response grated on her more than all the combined pain of her current condition and a single tear slid out of Waldorf’s right eye.

What James did for Waldorf and his wife was purely altruistic; when he found out that is was them, it no longer mattered what type of relationship he’d had with his boss.  He had the opportunity to extend or withdraw a helping hand.  After all, if he’d refused, he would have [mentally] been justified in his actions—his wife was waiting on him for a romantic dinner date.  However, he set aside his personal needs to help a total “stranger.”  Like the Good Samaritan in the above passage of scripture, James was moved with compassion, and in both cases, lives were saved.

My Conclusion

Neither James nor the Good Samaritan knew who they were helping, but they helped anyways.  This was Jesus’ point to the lawyer—the victim in the story was robbed and stripped naked, thereby leaving him unidentifiable.  His lack of identity emphasized the importance of aiding someone regardless of their race, socioeconomic status, and other labels used to categorize individuals.  When it’s all said and done, we are all human, and based on this shared humanity we should reach out and care for others in need when the opportunity arises.

In business, you never know who your next customer might be.  You do not know how a small act of kindness could turn that person into an enthused brand ambassador or loyal customer.  However, that should not be the motivation for helping others only an added benefit for doing so.

Oh!  Did I mention, months after Waldorf and his wife recovered, he visited James and apologized for his nasty behavior toward him?

About the Author:

Namie Bimba is the daughter of missionaries and is an MBA Candidate at Regent University.  She blogs about various life experiences, events, culture, fashion, theology, and more at www.missbimba.tumblr.com.

References:

  • Biblegateway.com. (2012). The Good Samaritan: Luke 10:25-27. New Century Version. Retrieved from http://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Luke%2010:25-37&version=NCV.
  • Knowles, M.P. (2004). What was the victim wearing? Literary, economic, and social contexts for the parable of the Good Samaritan. Biblical Interpretation, 12(2), 145-174.
  • Tang, T., Sutarso, T., Davis, G., Dolinski, D., Ibrahim, A., & Wagner, S. (2008). To Help or Not to Help? The Good Samaritan Effect and the Love of Money on Helping Behavior. Journal of Business Ethics, 82(4), 865-887.

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If you would like to use this post, feel free!  Just be sure to include this blurb with today’s blog:

Desiree M. Mondesir is the CEO and Founder of Desired Assistance or “DA” virtual writing and editing company which also encompasses DA Inspires, DA WeddingsDA Luxury and her self-titled authoress blog.  As a dedicated writer and entrepreneur, Desiree seeks to inspire the imagination, educate her readers, and challenge the toxic mindsets of individuals all over the world.  Sign up for a FREE subscription at www.dainspires.wordpress.com

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July 4, 2012

Living a Life of Integrity

In the last two posts, we’ve been discussing Daniel, Hananiah, Azariah, and Mishael—the four Hebrew princes taken captive to Babylon.  We’ve discussed their spiritual resolve to not assimilate as well as the God-Factor, both of which allowed them to excel to the top positions in Babylonian government.

A Life of Integrity

Today, we’ll be discussing a similar prince in a similar situation.  Joseph, the son of Jacob, the son of Isaac, the son of Abraham, was transplanted against his will to Egypt, the empire that controlled the world at that time, as a mere slave.  Sold by his brothers to his distant cousins, the Ishmaelites and Midianites, they bought him to Egypt and sold the 17 year old to Potiphar, a chief officer in Pharaoh’s government.  For the full story, read Genesis 37; 39-47.

While in Potiphar’s home, he rose above all the other common slaves and slave masters until he became the governor of Potiphar’s estate.  His power was so widespread that the Bible tells us Potiphar only worried about what he had to eat (Genesis 39:6).  Potiphar did well to utilize Joseph’s talents in his home; unfortunately, Potiphar’s wife took notice of Joseph and believed him to have “special talents” as well.  So she threw herself at him.

This is where Joseph’s integrity and quality truly shined through.  Had Joseph forgotten his God and his integrity, he could have easily become puffed up with his talents and gifts without repentance that are without repentance (Romans 11:29), but Joseph feared the Lord and respected Potiphar, so he ran.

And what did Joseph get for his integrity?  Slammed in jail.  But God looked out for Joseph and even though he was technically a prisoner, he rose to the same position as governor in the prison.  The warden favoured Joseph so much so that he entrusted Pharaoh’s imprisoned cup bearer and baker into his care.

While in prison, both servants had two seemingly similar dreams, but with drastically different results.  God enabled the young man to interpret their dreams, and they came to past just as he said.  And what did Joseph get for prophesying the reinstatement of Pharaoh’s cupbearer?  Forgotten.  But God did not forget him.

Joseph’s integrity, paired with God’s favour, caused him to be brought before Pharaoh to describe and interpret two troubling dreams he had.  His gifts literally made room for him (Proverbs 18:16).  But not only that, his integrity with Potiphar and the prison warden enabled him to rise above his unfair lot in life.

God gave Joseph the description and interpretation of Pharaoh’s dreams to Joseph which pleased Pharaoh, intimidated Pharaoh’s courtiers, and caused the young Hebrew to be promoted to the position of governor or prime minister over all the land of Egypt.  Most may believe that this is the end of Joseph’s testing, but that is not true.  The last true test involved how he treated his family after he’d ascended to the second highest throne in the land.

When a famine prophesied in Pharaoh’s dreams came to past, Joseph’s brothers were driven to Egypt to buy grain so their families wouldn’t starve.  He could have had them thrown them into jail without a moment’s thought if he had allowed himself to harbor unforgiveness in his heart.  He could have given them a punishment to fit the crime and it would have been just by man’s law, especially with all of Egypton his side.  But Joseph had integrity.  He tested his brothers, made sure his full blood-brother was still alive, blessed them, and bade them return to Egypt permanently.

In every level of testing, “from the pit to the palace”, Joseph never forgot his God or his integrity.  I would that so many of us were as steadfast!

Are You a Person of Integrity?

Joseph’s integrity seeped into every aspect of his life; in fact that is what the word denotes.  It means to be whole; the same through and through.  And the truth of the matter is, if Joseph did not have good character in one area, it would have eventually seeped into the other areas of his life.  Like a beverage spilling onto a pile of napkins, the liquid will not stay on the top, but seep further and further down until every layer of the pile is affected.  So what does your life look like?

Do you lie to your kids or spouse?  You’ll start to lie to your employees.  Do you list tax write-offs that shouldn’t technically be added to the list?  You’ll likely start mismanaging your company fund or finances.  Whatever your problem area is, you first need to admit that it is a problem or even a sin, depending on what the issue is. God can fix it if you let Him.  And when He does, you have the opportunity to right your wrongs and become true person of integrity.

When you operate in integrity, God will bless and favour you like He did Joseph.  Whether people acknowledge your character or not, God will and He will do it for all to see.  Choose now to live a life of integrity!

Previous Post: “Keeping the God-Factor

 

If you would like to use this post, feel free!  Just be sure to include this blurb with today’s blog:

Desiree M. Mondesir is the CEO and Founder of Desired Assistance or “DA” virtual writing and editing company which also encompasses DA Inspires, DA WeddingsDA Luxury and her self-titled authoress blog.  As a dedicated writer and entrepreneur, Desiree seeks to inspire the imagination, educate her readers, and challenge the toxic mindsets of individuals all over the world.  Sign up for a FREE subscription at www.dainspires.wordpress.com

May 29, 2012

Don’t Be a Eunuch!

I am in the process of working on a wonderful book that I hope to finish in the next couple of weeks and publish soon after that. One of the chapters deals with Jezebel—the woman and the spirit—but last night while writing, I noticed something interesting. When Jehu, the man anointed to kill Jezebel, came to her house to kill her, he did not actually have to dirty his hands killing her—her own eunuchs did.

“Now when Jehu had come to Jezreel, Jezebel heard of it; and she put paint on her eyes and adorned her head, and looked through a window. Then, as Jehu entered at the gate, she said, ‘Is it peace, Zimri, murderer of your master?’ And he looked up at the window, and said, ‘Who is on my side? Who?’ So two or three eunuchs looked out at him. Then he said, ‘Throw her down.’ So they threw her down, and some of her blood spattered on the wall and on the horses; and he trampled her underfoot,” (II Kings 9:30-33).

Now some of you may wonder why on earth I am discussing Jezebel and her death in a blog about writing and entrepreneurship. What does it have to do with you? Great question!

What Is a Eunuch?

A eunuch, according to Merriam-Webster Online Dictionary, is a castrated man placed in charge of a harem or employed as a chamberlain in a palace; a man or boy deprived of the testes or external genitals; or one that lacks virility or power. In other words, these men have had their ability to reproduce cut off as a symbol of bondage and servitude to an individual.

There are also those who have been made spiritual and mental eunuchs through circumstance or even through a personal decision. They might not have had a physical cut or procedure, but in their minds and spirits they are eunuchs just the same. These people are completely incapable of fulfilling the blessing and commandment of Genesis 1:27 that commands us all to “be fruitful and multiply”.

Are You a Eunuch?

The eunuchs who served under Jezebel were once strong boys and men, full of capability to procreate and be their own men, but through time and circumstance, they became enslaved and that ability removed from them. They might have even been born into servitude. This represents two forms of eunuch 1) circumstantial and 2) generational. The question is, are you a eunuch? And if so, which kind are you?

You might be working a dead-end or even a wonderful job, but yet in still a job that does not allow you to fulfill your purpose in the earth and provides you no enjoyment. Oftentimes, when you work for a company or individual and never leave, you are employed not to realize your own abilities and dreams, but to fulfill the dreams of your employer. You could also be in a relationship or environment where you are constantly told, and thus programmed, to believe that you cannot accomplish anything and your dreams are pointless. Therefore, your ability to reproduce your dreams is stifled and squashed, just like a castrated man.

You might also be part of a family that has a history of mediocrity, lack, or not chasing their own dreams. They expect you to be just as unaccomplished in life as they are and anytime you dare to hope for something more, your dreams are smacked down and your visions are declared lunacy. You are a eunuch.

The worst type of eunuch in my opinion is the type who purposes to be so. Now I am not talking about the Apostle Paul or any other celibate person who has dedicated their life to God. This is a rare and honourable calling, yet not one most people are called to. I am talking about the people who have stifled their own dreams and ability to multiply. If you are doing anything worthwhile, someone will always tell you that you are crazy. These are those who do not have the revelation of what you are doing in the world. You must not allow the nay-sayers to castrate your dreams.

If you are one of these individuals, it’s time to adopt the same spirit as Jezebel’s eunuchs and throw the wicked queen to her death!

Reverse your Castration and Captivity

This does not mean you should actually start tossing people out of windows. Please don’t do that! But you can cast off your restraints and ask God to renew your ability to be fruitful and multiply. All it took was Jehu calling out to the eunuchs for them to snap and come back to themselves. Consider me your Jehu calling to you and come back to yourself in Jesus’ name!

God has so many ideas, concepts, businesses, books, and inventions that He wants and expects you to birth into the world. “Be fruitful and multiply” does not just mean have a lot of babies. That’s well and good and godly, but it also gives us the know-how to dominate the world. What is your area of dominance? What is your realm of influence? That is the world you are supposed to be fruitful and multiply in which will inevitably allow you to dominate. When you reclaim your ability to reproduce, you bring life to your own dreams and visions and thus become a blessing to others as you serve your gift.

What are the dreams God has placed on your heart? Where has your ability to bring those dreams to past been cut? Submit it to God and watch a creative miracle happen! Write your books! Start your businesses! Create your inventions! God has specific people assigned and connected to your world that will only be touched through those “brain children”. Take the promises of the word that tell you you have the power to get wealth (Deuteronomy 8:18) and your gift(s) will make room for you (Proverbs 18:16) and claim them as your own.

God wants to multiply His image, His heart, and His Kingdom in the world and it can only be done through you. Submit yourself, your abilities, and your dreams to Him and He will prosper you in due season!

Don’t be a eunuch!

Previous Post: “Divine Inspiration

 

If you would like to use this post, feel free!  Just be sure to include this blurb with today’s blog:

Desiree M. Mondesir is the CEO and Founder of Desired Assistance or “DA” virtual writing and editing company which also encompasses DA Inspires, DA WeddingsDA Luxury and her self-titled authoress blog.  As a dedicated writer and entrepreneur, Desiree seeks to inspire the imagination, educate her readers, and challenge the toxic mindsets of individuals all over the world.  Sign up for a FREE subscription at www.dainspires.wordpress.com

May 23, 2012

Divine Inspiration

I once partook in a discussion on LinkedIn that referenced that statement of a man who refused to let God tell him what to right.  The absolute arrogance!  The utter ignorance!  *breathe Desiree* As I am sure you can tell, this declaration angers me to my core.  As an author and entrepreneur I have learned the immeasurable value of allowing God to inspire and direct my decisions.

Godly Literary Inspiration

The first and foremost example of divine—godly—literary inspiration and also the most trustworthy is The Holy Bible.  This book which has been around for thousands of years and was translated into English most popularly in 1611 (thanks King James), is the most solid example we have of the legendary and proven inspiration of the Most High throughout the ages.  Regardless of what some nay-sayers and learned individuals who are “always learning and never able to come to the knowledge of truth” (II Timothy 3:7) may say, the Word was, is, and ever will be true.  And not only true, but relevant.

The Bible told us that the world was round before the “church” and many scientists accepted it as truth.  Isaiah prophesied that God “sits on the circle of the earth” (Isaiah 40:22).  Empires that would rule the Ancient World were prophesied in the book of Daniel.  Both the Book of Matthew and Revelation speak of events that we see in our daily local and global news. These are just a few examples that prove the validity of the Bible.  You cannot tell me that the Bible was not inspired by God (II Timothy 3:16).

Many other books besides the Bible have been written by inspiration of the Holy Spirit.  Whether by ministers, business men, historians, or others, books are written every day by inspiration of the Holy Spirit and we know this because not only do they line up with the Word of God, but God speaks to us through them as we read them.  The result is confirmation, affirmation, encouragement, and growth for the readers in the arenas that the books cover.

Theory of Sub-Creation     

If you know anything about me personally, you know that I am absolutely obsessed with The Hobbit and Lord of the Rings Trilogy author, J.R.R. Tolkien.  I am also equally obsessed with his theory of sub-creation and as such often see its effect in the world.  It most certainly adds a different, equally wonderful aspect to our discussion of Godly inspiration.  Tolkien’s theory summed up simply states that “[Tolkien] could view sub-creation as a form of worship, a way for creatures to express the divine image in them by becoming creators” (“Sub-Creation or Smuggled Theory”).

Tolkien was a Christian, as am I, and saw sub-creation as an opportunity to exercise our God-like characteristics endowed in Genesis 1:26, “Then God said, “Let Us make man in Our image, according to Our likeness,”.  God created, therefore, we in His image, have the ability to create as well.  This is especially true for [fiction] authors who have the ability to create a world of their own with its own laws and beings in their literature.  Yet we can also adopt this theory as entrepreneurs.

Your ability to create a business of your own should come from the inspiration above and allow you to sub-create in your own right.  And although it is not the same as creating a story or movie, you can most certainly create a new niche in the world or re-create/re-define one that is already created.

What can you create this is uniquely your own?  For DA Weddings, not only do I create fresh wedding-related content, but I revel in creating fantastically-fabulous wedding themes and inspirations and for this blog I seek to create equally fresh content that will motivate and inspire you to do what you were meant to.  For my business, the parent company of both DA Inspires and DA Weddings, I assist others in their own sub-created literary pieces.

How Does Inspiration Come?

In my experience, the best inspiration comes directly from God.  Whether He “downloads” or “drops” it directly in my spirit such as in a picture or word image across my mind, or a direction to a particular item or subject.  Oftentimes, I will sit in front of a blank piece of paper, ask God to speak, and start writing.  He always comes through.

You can also be inspired by something you read, see, or hear.  Oftentimes when you are inspired by God via literature, it can be described as illumination (light shed upon a thing) or revelation (a direct message or “lesson” from God).  You are also able to see or hear something—whatever the source of it may be—and it can be harnessed as an inspiration for an idea.

The last way you can be inspired to write or build a business is to observe and be burdened by a need.  Plato said “necessity is the mother of invention”.  What needs in the world do you see that you believe you are meant to fill?  What  problems or dilemmas—whether they affect the quality or convenience of life—are you drawn to fulfill?  Many of the greatest inventors were those who invented by inspiration of God.

The word tells us that “every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, and comes down from the Father of lights, with whom there is no variation or shadow of turning,” (James 1:17).  This tells us that God, who changes not, can inspire us to create just as easily as He inspired the prophets and apostles of old to write the Bible; every good idea, no matter what it is, is absolutely from God.

The word also tells us that “…you shall remember the Lord your God, for it is He who gives you power to get wealth…,” (Deuteronomy 8:18).  This verse shows us that not only does God care about our financial stability, but that He gave us—past tense—the power or ability to get the wealth that we desire.  The ideas, inventions, and concepts He longs to give us are oftentimes the vehicles He uses to bless us financially.  What an awesome encouragement and promise to us!

You were created in the image of God, and whether or not you serve Him—which I pray you do—you were endowed from before the foundations of time with the abilities of your Creator to sub-create in your own right.  Allow God to inspire and direct your creations and you will be sure to build unique, relevant, and long-lasting businesses, literary empires, and the like if you simply trust God to guide you.

See also: “Sub-Creation or Smuggled Theology: Tolkien Contra Lewis on Christian Fantasy

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If you would like to use this post, feel free!  Just be sure to include this blurb with today’s blog:

Desiree M. Mondesir is the CEO and Founder of Desired Assistance or “DA” virtual writing and editing company which also encompasses DA Inspires, DA WeddingsDA Luxury and her self-titled authoress blog.  As a dedicated writer and entrepreneur, Desiree seeks to inspire the imagination, educate her readers, and challenge the toxic mindsets of individuals all over the world.  Sign up for a FREE subscription at www.dainspires.wordpress.com