December Speaker – Joseph Thompson

After more than thirty years of ministry, and having serendipitously found himself serving as Discipleship Pastor and a member of the Spiritual Leadership Team at Action Church in Orlando, FL (Outreach Magazine’s 2019 second fastest growing church in the USA), Joseph now focuses his energy on RHC, a ministry/business jointly owned by his wife, Sola and himself, and on Primal Purpose, a ministry geared towards the underserved and underprivileged.
Originally from Nigeria, West Africa, Joseph has enjoyed the privilege of living in many different parts of the world, seeing the sights, hearing the sounds, and smelling the smells of the amazingly varied cultures that God has blessed our world with. A self described Cultural Architect, Joseph has served as lead pastor at a couple of churches, as well as associate pastor in a few others.
He is really passionate about storytelling and communicating the truths of Scripture as they relate to living life every day, and he communicates those stories with characteristic probity and subtle humor, which makes his messages easy to understand.
His academic background includes a number of college degrees, but if you ask him, his real qualifications for serving in ministry and business are his passionate pursuit of God and his love for people— which he considers his superpower.
Having gained a ton of local church experience over his many years of ministry, Joseph ‘criss- crosses’ the United States and ‘globe-trots’ the nations, speaking in churches, conferences, and seminars.
He’s been married to his beautiful bride, Sola, for almost thirty-four years, and has three adult children: a son, Demi, and two beautiful daughters, Bimi and Temi.

Change the Narrative

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“But understand this, that in the last days there will come times of difficulty. For people will be lovers of self, lovers of money, proud, arrogant, abusive, disobedient to their parents, ungrateful, unholy, heartless, unappeasable, slanderous, without self-control, brutal, not loving good, treacherous, reckless, swollen with conceit, lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God, having the appearance of godliness, but denying its power. Avoid such people.” – 2 Timothy 3:1-5

Are we in the last days?

Turn on TV news, or scroll through social media, and you might think so. Much of the discourse resembles characterizations described by Paul in his letter to the missionary Timothy.

People are angry. Intolerant. Loud and boastful. Unwilling to listen to others. Love of self, money and pleasure controls their lives.

Paul warned of terrible times in the last days. People would live wrongly and ignore God’s commands. Avoid them, he advised, lest you get sucked into their decadence.

Is this where we find ourselves? Staring down hordes who have turned from God, and are closed off to all but their own beliefs?

Maybe. Yet within every crisis lies opportunity.

God reminds that every one of us are created in His image. Let’s not be quick to write off others. Instead, let’s embrace the Great Commission, and seek to make disciples of even those who have strayed.

Let Us Speak Differently

“A soft answer turns away wrath, but a harsh word stirs up anger.” – Proverbs 15:1

“Know this, my beloved brothers: let every person be quick to hear, slow to speak, slow to anger” – James 1:19

“Whoever restrains his words has knowledge, and he who has a cool spirit is a man of understanding.” – Proverbs 17:27

Consider these verses. What do they all have in common?

This guidance from Scripture runs contrary to our current environment, where people compete over who can shout the loudest, or win an argument at all costs. These passages counsel us to hold our tongues, and first listen and consider.

Herein lies our opportunity to share truth and the Good News. We can model the love of Jesus. By acting as true disciples, we offer a stark contrast to societal cacophony. Is it possible that many, worn out by the tumult, will not see a difference … and find it appealing?

Let’s first seek to walk in others’ shoes. Try to grasp the pain that makes them lash out.

Rather than respond in kind to sharp tongues, ask insightful questions: How did you come to this belief? Who told you the facts on which you base your statements? What are the perspectives of those who disagree?

Enact the 7-Second Rule: Wait seven seconds before responding. Let words sink in. Allow the Holy Spirit to shape an answer. Permit God to guide you in de-escalating conflict.

These are merely tactics to build bridges. The bigger picture – the part that really matters – is changing the narrative of anger and vitriol that seems to dominate the public square.

How can we do so? Listen actively. Show empathy. Respond lovingly. Who might notice, and see a new (and better) way forward?

This is our opportunity to demonstrate God’s healing power. As Romans 12:9 advises, “Let love be genuine. Abhor what is evil; hold fast to what is good.”

The other option? We can seek to win arguments … but if we lose souls in the process, what have we won?

(If you’re ready to embrace Christ, He’s ready for you. Visit C Suite for Christ to join in Christ-centered fellowship with other professionals. Submit a prayer request for a pressing need in your life. Follow C Suite for Christ on LinkedIn and Facebook. Questions? Contact Paul M. Neuberger at (414) 313-8338 or [email protected])

November Speaker—Krystal Parker

Krystal Parker is a former executive for a Fortune 200 publicly traded oil and gas company. She has over 25 years of experience in organizational management, leading hundreds of union & non-union employees to provide J.D. Powers, award-winning customer service to more than 2.1 million customers across the U.S.

A former college dropout, Parker advanced her education at Harvard Business School for senior executive leaders focusing on innovation, globalization, and leadership diversity. She earned an undergrad in psychology and a master’s in marketing. As a certified DISC behavioral specialist, trainer, speaker, and coach, Parker opened a boutique consulting company, Intent & Impact, to help companies increase profit, reduce turnover, and enhance employee engagement. A best selling author and professor, Krystal teaches graduate and undergraduate level courses. She is also the president of the United States & Central Florida Christian Chambers of Commerce.

Release Your Worries

 

“Count it all joy, my brethren, when you meet various trials, for you know that the testing of your faith produces steadfastness.” – James 1:2-3

It’s easy to worry one’s way through life.

Relationships. Money. Health. Career. Are any of these parts of our lives devoid of concerns?

Let’s not overlook larger fears, as well, over which we have even less control: economic security. Conflicts here and abroad. Environmental threats.

Day-to-day pressures can seem overwhelming. Joys can be hard to count. Worry takes over. Does anyone enjoy feeling this way?

Probably not – yet James writes that we should find joy in such trials. Our faith becomes more steadfast because of them. We can derive strength, and hope, and perseverance.

Everyone is in, approaching or leaving a crisis. It’s how life works. The critical part is how we manage the related stress, worries and fears. Do we trust God to guide us?

The Hidden Message in Our Prayers

“Night and day we pray most earnestly that we may see you again and supply what is lacking in your faith.” – 1 Thessalonians 3:10

Our prayers are revealing. Do you “worry” your prayers? Do they sometimes begin with “Just,” like a wheeler-dealer cutting a deal with the Lord? As in “Just let this happen, and I’ll do this in return?” Seriously?

Don’t put God in a box. Scripture promises He will do all abundantly for us. He fills in our deficiencies, which are often laid bare when we fail at something. To borrow a popular saying: God doesn’t choose the qualified, he qualifies the chosen.

Yes, this is indeed how He works. When our prayers are pleading and worrying, instead of trusting, we fail God. If “Just” enters the picture, it’s a neon warning sign to refocus, and believe bigger.

God is a finisher. He responds to our pleas for help, without condescending. When we

don’t know what we’re doing, or where we’re going, He leads us. His wisdom is profound, unceasing, and incomprehensible.

At the Last Supper, Jesus told his disciples that He was the vine, and they the branches; apart from Him, they could do nothing.

Thus, we should not hesitate to ask God for assistance. He will respond. He will grant us mercy. He will grant forgiveness. Of all these, we should have no worries.

(If you’re ready to embrace Christ, He’s ready for you. Visit C Suite for Christ to join in Christ-centered fellowship with other professionals. Submit a prayer request for a pressing need in your life. Follow C Suite for Christ on LinkedIn and Facebook. Questions? Contact Paul M. Neuberger at (414) 313-8338 or [email protected])

October Speaker—Paul M. Neuberger

Paul M. Neuberger, founder of C-Suite for Christ, is a Wisconsin native, graduated from Ripon College in 2005 and Marian University in 2007. He started his career as a professional fundraiser at the collegiate level upon his graduation from Ripon. Following the death of his father-in-law in 2012, Paul followed a new path and became a financial advisor with Thrivent Financial. It’s from here he realized a passion for sales and started his first business, The Cold Call Coach.

Additionally, Paul is a dynamic, in-demand speaker who delivers keynotes worldwide. His most notable talk is “Instantaneous Differentiation: How to Make Yourself Memorable”. Anyone who attends one of Paul’s engaging talks leaves feeling inspired and armed with a new set of skills. Paul loves to show the audience how, together, they can make the impossible possible.

Paul loves spending quality time with his wife Tanya and their three children: Kennedy (9), Hudson (7), and Reagan (4). He also enjoys immersing himself in politics, reading biographies, and watching movies.

Let God Break You Up

 

“You crown the year with a bountiful harvest; even the hard pathways overflow with abundance.” – Psalms 65:11

If you’ve ever planted a garden, or grass, you know the critical first step.

You have to loosen the soil. Really get in there and dig it up. Ignore this task, and failure inevitably follows.

Seeds left atop hard soil won’t germinate. They’ll wither in the sun, get washed away by rain, or be eaten by birds. They need to be worked into the soil, sometimes several inches deep, to access its nutrients and protection.

Tilling the soil has other benefits, too. Water and oxygen penetrate. Fertilizer reaches a depth where it nourishes young roots.

Farmers, who grow crops on a large scale, can go nearly a foot deep with their tilling machines. Thank heavens we amateur growers don’t have to put in such effort!

Thousands of years ago, many, many people farmed for a living. The Bible is filled with literal and metaphorical references to growing and harvesting. There’s a powerful lesson to be learned.

Are You Ready to Harvest?

“Those who plant in tears will harvest with shouts of joy.” – Psalms 126:5

God has a plan for every one of us. He wants us to reap a bountiful harvest of love, joy and fulfilment.

First, though, we need to be open to His planting. Like the soil, we can’t be hard and inflexible. We need to be broken up. The conditions for spiritual growth have to be created.

Similar to a farmer, God tills us at a deep level. He goes far into our souls. Only there can He plant the seeds to fulfil His plans for us.

Just like farmers who work long hours, God toils continuously. His will cannot be denied.
We’re not always open to his tilling, though.

The Need for Tilling

“Then the earth will yield its harvests, and God, our God, will richly bless us.” – Psalms 67:6

When life goes swimmingly, it can get easy to forget about God’s blessings. If challenges are few, so, often, is reflection. We get cocky. Our hearts become like the hard soil: infertile and unwelcoming.

Until, of course, inevitable difficulties arise: health issues. Marital problems. Business struggles. Financial stress.

Suddenly, we remember God’s presence in our lives. “What should I do?” we ask Him. “Don’t you love me anymore?”

Oh, He does … which is exactly why your comfortable existence has been interrupted. God is trying to tell you something. Yet your heart remains hard soil. Before you can hear Him, God has to do some tilling.

Embrace His work. God only tills us so we can grow. Be thankful that He is digging deep, to snap us out of our blissfully ignorant reverie. Nothing good grows there.

All this tilling has a purpose. God is working something wonderful in you. To make it happen, though, we often need to first be broken up, and opened to the elements that nurture growth. Understand this, and God’s message will become far clearer.

We are His gardens. God wants to plant seeds of discipleship. The more open we are to His tilling, the less we need to be broken up.

(If you’re ready to embrace Christ, He’s ready for you. Visit C Suite for Christ to join in Christ-centered fellowship with other professionals. Submit a prayer request for a pressing need in your life. Follow C Suite for Christ on LinkedIn and Facebook. Questions? Contact Paul M. Neuberger at (414) 313-8338 or [email protected])

God is Speaking. Are You Watching?

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“Very well then, with foreign lips and strange tongues God will speak to this people.” – Isaiah 18:11

Has God ever spoken to you?

If so, it wasn’t a message you literally heard. You probably remember a situation that occurred, or a person who entered your life, through which you felt God telling you something. Nothing was verbalized. Interpretation was everything.

Indeed, the notion of a loud, booming voice emanating from Heaven is fallacy. Nowhere in the Bible is this portrayed. Instead, God typically spoke through people or events. Those hearing had to have open hearts and minds, to listen and understand.

Especially today, with the endless cacophony from traffic noises to beeping phones, God’s literal voice would be hard to hear. Even if ready, we might still miss it.

Waiting to hear God speaking, in a voice that never comes, is frustration personified. So don’t make yourself crazy.

Instead, avoid listening with your ears for God. Use your eyes.

Keeping an Eye(s) Out

“For God speaks again and again, though people do not recognize it.” Job 33:14

Consider your life. Are you approaching forks in the road, where significant choices await?

Is your family facing challenges? Is your health hitting roadblocks? What’s going on in your business?

God speaks to us through life circumstances. Or people. Or opportunities that present themselves. You never know.

Pay attention, though, with your eyes open, and you will always “hear” Him. God’s guidance is rarely heavily cloaked. We have to be cognizant, which can be difficult amid life’s unending distractions and demands for attention.

Try this approach. Take five quiet minutes, every now and then, to ponder what God is telling you. Use the OPAL roadmap:

  • Observe events
  • Pause and ponder
  • Ask God what He’s trying to tell you
  • Listen

Watch, and You Shall Hear

“In the past God spoke to our ancestors through the prophets at many times and in various ways.”Hebrews 1:1

Stepping off the Hustle and Bustle Train for even a short while can reap enormous dividends. See if your life doesn’t gain clarity.

Hearing God’s Word requires using our eyes. If this seems counterintuitive … well, it is. God’s message is highly unlikely to be audible. Rather, we might find it written on a chalkboard somewhere.

Or, perhaps in a flash of insight after a conversation. Or maybe in the resolution to a longstanding dilemma.

These are all life events. They double as God’s messengers. Even small ones, such as encountering a stranger on the street, can hold infinite wisdom. Watch for them.

Why? No booming, God-like voices are coming. Instead, He speaks in far more quiet, subtle ways.

Don’t pray for God to tell you what to do. Ask Him to open your eyes. Only then will you be able to truly listen.

(If you’re ready to embrace Christ, He’s ready for you. Visit C Suite for Christ to join in Christ-centered fellowship with other professionals. Submit a prayer request for a pressing need in your life. Follow C Suite for Christ on LinkedIn and Facebook. Questions? Contact Paul M. Neuberger at (414) 313-8338 or [email protected])

Yes, Let’s Be Crazy for Christ!

Image courtesy of Crazy 4 Christ Ministry.

 

“If it seems we are crazy, it is to bring glory to God. And if we are in our right minds, it is for your benefit.” 2 Corinthians 5:13

Every entrepreneur has heard the lines from would-be naysayers.

“You’re crazy to believe this can succeed.” “You’re crazy to quit a good job to do this.”
“You’re crazy to risk so much on this venture.”

For many risk-takers, this fuels their fire. What’s life without challenge … even if it means potentially losing nearly everything?

Yet, everyday people can be called “crazy” for very innocuous reasons – asking out a seemingly-unattainable love interest, perhaps, or buying a motorcycle or sports car they’ve long dreamt about.

The world is a timid, risk-averse place. Most people are afraid to step out. Afraid to pursue their dreams. Afraid to take chances. Afraid to share their true selves with others … for fear they’ll be judged, or maybe even called “crazy.”

Truth be told, “crazy” has conflicting identities. If someone is “crazy” about their spouse, or a new child, or even a sports team … well, isn’t this good? It means they’re passionate and dedicated, right? Who could argue with this?

Crazy Like a Christian?

“You will see hallucinations, and you will say crazy things.” Proverbs 23:33

The other side of “crazy,” though, is decidedly unflattering. It’s associated with language such as unstable, unhinged, mad, lunatic, “off their rocker” … you get the point.

From a faith perspective, “crazy” remains a two-sided coin. Thousands of devout Christians have been called “crazy” through the centuries … often by fearful, falsely-accusing opponents who sought to imprison them, or worse.

Yet, as Paul wrote in 2 Corinthians, being crazy for God is hardly a bad thing. Christians everywhere would do well to seek to bring him glory. It’s what we’re called to do!

The passive society we live in might call us crazy for bringing God into the office, or posting about Him on social media, or using Scripture in an e-mail signature. You’ll “offend” someone. Or potentially lose business. Or maybe even be sued.

Don’t be surprised – nor intimidated. The world around us doesn’t share a passion to glorify God, and spread His Word. It doesn’t grasp that people of faith share a bond with Christ that is in this world, yet not of this world. Our devotion transcends any earthly measure.

Is it “Crazy” to Save Others?

“The light disturbs the wicked and stops the arm that is raised in violence.”Job 38:15

We should live for God, and talk about God … even if others call us crazy (or worse). Why? We never know who might hear us, or see us, at a pivotal moment.

Consider the violence in our society. Look at those who go on shooting sprees at schools and businesses. These people don’t know God. What might be prevented if they were exposed to Him – and embraced Him – at a dark point, where their lives could still go in another direction? Might a single “crazy” Christian make a difference?

Those who believe we’re delusional to seek to “Cover the World in Christ” can do so. Let them.

We know that God’s great love can overcome huge obstacles. We’ve experienced it in our own lives. Let us never allow our faith to waver, regardless of how we’re labelled.

Will you be a crazy Christian? Ready to go nuts for Christ? Let’s do it. If others don’t join in, or even fight us, we’ll pray for their sanity.

(If you’re ready to embrace Christ, He’s ready for you. Visit C Suite for Christ to join in Christ-centered fellowship with other professionals. Submit a prayer request for a pressing need in your life. Follow C Suite for Christ on LinkedIn and Facebook. Questions? Contact Paul M. Neuberger at (414) 313-8338 or [email protected])