The Five F’s
“And it is impossible to please God without faith. Anyone who wants to come to him must believe that God exists and that he rewards those who sincerely seek him.”
-Hebrews 11:6 (NLT)
Hopefully at some point in our lives, we have had the blessing of receiving a powerful and lasting message from God when we least expect it. Mine happened over a series of four key events in a single year.
January 3rd - My wonderful wife, Vickie, and I had just returned from a trip with our football team at Northern Illinois University to the International Bowl. By the end of the trip, I felt sluggish and stepped on our bathroom scale to discover I was heavier than I had ever been. It was definitely time to do something about that.
January 31st - While attending a national committee meeting in Florida, a close colleague and I were having a conversation about our careers and our profession. It blossomed into a wonderful examination of our faith and core values. He reminded me, “It’s not about our plan, it’s about God’s plan and how we embrace it.”
February 17th - I was at lunch with a donor at NIU whom I had started getting to know. We went to a diner near his church in a Chicago suburb, and he began telling me about the men’s group he was currently attending. This conversation also blossomed and had a lasting impact on me. He went on to share his core values (which have also become my personal ones), the “Five F’s,” with me: Faith, Family, Fitness, Friends, Finances. He explained that sometimes we get those out of order or do not keep them prioritized, and that is when we are most likely to stray from God.
This was so powerful, and all the way back to my home that afternoon, I felt God had spoken to me through his message. I immediately began making mental notes and actually writing down my thoughts under each of the Five F’s. In other words, I was “counting my blessings!”
My final key event that reinforced my core values came when I was blessed during summer to receive a job offer at Southern Methodist University. While it impacted the Finances value, it was such a blessing for Faith and Family reasons, and those are the first two F’s. After much prayer and deliberation, it has become evident that keeping the Five F’s in daily proper perspective can make an unbelievable impact in our desire to serve God.
Today, examine your own core values and ask God if He has specific ones He wants you to pursue. We all need priorities. Why not let Him be the one who sets them?
1. How do you view these Five F's?
2. When is the last time you examined your core values and aligned them with your faith?
3. Pray about your personal core values and ask the Lord to reveal what He wants you to pursue in life.
FAITH: Hebrews 11:6
FAMILY: Psalm 127:3
FITNESS: 1 Corinthians 3:16
FRIENDS: Proverbs 27:17
FINANCES: James 1:17