Attorney David Gibbs, Jr. talks about the simple prayer he prayed with his wife in 1969 acknowledging his willingness for God to use him to defend believers who were under legal attack for their faith. In the 50 years since, God has used David and his team at Christian Legal Association to help hundreds of thousands of believers around the world stand up for their faith in a culture that is becoming increasingly hostile towards Christianity.

Attorney David Gibbs, Jr. is the Founder and President of the Christian Law Association and Founder of Gibbs & Associates Law Firm. Gibbs & Associates represents over 10,000 ministries nationwide. David Gibbs, Jr. has over 40 years of experience representing clients and has appealed and argued before 15 different State Supreme Courts in defense of religious liberty.

Since 1969, Christian Law Association has provided free legal counsel to Bible-believing churches and Christians who are experiencing legal obstacles in practicing their religious faith because of governmental regulation.

CLA has been involved in cases where Christians were arrested for witnessing to others in public, public school students being told they do not have the right to read their Bibles at school, churches being excluded from communities, Christians being fired for sharing their faith at work, and thousands of other assaults on religious freedom. CLA provides free legal services based in part on the generosity of God’s people.

“Prayer moves the arm of the Almighty.”

“You’re not a success if you destroy your family.”

“A leader is in trouble when you want to be the pinnacle of admiration.”

Key Takeaways:
1. God profoundly uses those who surrender.
2. There’s a tendency in every one of us to play it safe.
3. The fate of the nation rests with God’s people.
4. These are Biblical issues, not political issues.
5. If you desire to be used of God, get prepared – spiritually and professionally.

Full transcript:

Ray: Hello everyone. This is a Ray Hilbert and I am your host here at Bottom Line Faith. This is the program where we love to explore and expound upon that intersection of faith, of business, of leadership in the marketplace. If you’re a first time listener to the program, welcome. We’re so glad you have joined us today. If you’re a regular subscriber here at Bottom Line Faith, thank you for tuning back in. Well folks, you are going to be blessed and you are going to be encouraged and you’re going to want to take notes for our guest today is attorney David Gibbs jr. He is the founder and president of the Christian Law Association and founder of the Gibbs & Associates Law Firm. But since 1969 through his association, he has provided, he and his team free legal counsel to Bible-believing churches and Christians who are experiencing legal obstacles in practicing their religious faith. So David, thank you for joining us here at Bottom Line Faith and welcome to the program.

David: Thank you for the privilege, Ray. It’s an honor to be here.

Ray: Well, David, I want to jump right in because we’re going to learn a lot today. You’re going to really help us understand some of the challenges and opportunities that we have, and freedoms that we have as followers of Christ in the marketplace. But would you take just a moment, give us a framework of your background, maybe a little bit of your faith journey, and how you got into the field of practicing law.

David: I was raised in a wonderful Christian home. My mom and dad both loved the Lord and raised my sister and I to serve Christ. So I come with a great background of a wonderful home. And while I made a profession of faith as a child, I always wavered in that a little bit, Ray because I wasn’t quite sure of the certainty of what I had done. And then in college, a wonderful college professor at Taylor university in Upland, Indiana said, “David, you need to settle that in your heart.” And while I believe I was saved as a child, I know I settled my salvation and my trust in Christ when I was in college and that set a whole new course in my life. Married a wonderful young lady who was saved, and this year we’re celebrating 54 years of marriage together. And she was the one who came up with the whole idea of the ministry that I’m engaged in today.

I had just graduated from law school, was 1969, I was working for a large law firm in Cleveland, Ohio, and we were having our nightly devotions as we do. We read scriptures and we talked and then we got on our knees to pray together, and while we were getting ready to kneel by a couch that we had, she asks me this question. She said, “Do you think God could ever use you as a lawyer to have a ministry?” I said, “A ministry?” She said, yeah, and I remember what I said to her. I said, “Honey, I’m not sure God likes lawyers that much, let alone loves to have a ministry with one.” And she said, “I understand,” but she said, could we tell the Lord that if anyone is ever in trouble for the faith and we could legally help them, that we do it without charge? I said, “Without charge, do you understand how expensive that could be?”

Ray: Wow.

David: She said, “I do.” And I said, well, who in the world do you know? I said, who’s in trouble for the faith? This is 1969 what we’re in today was I’m thinkable. She said, I don’t know anybody but she could, we just tell God we’re available. And she held her hands up, palms up, and she said, could we just tell the Lord we’re here and if he wants to use us, we’re available. That changed my life. I said, Honey, yes, we can tell the Lord that I said, I don’t think anything will ever come of it, but I said, I want you to know we can tell God we’re available. What I learned from that is that’s what God’s looking for. It’s someone who says, Lord, I’m available. Please use me. And we prayed that prayer and I have to confess I thought it was a sweet thing that my wife led us to do, but I thought that’ll sort of be the end of it. I imagine I’m busy in a litigation law firm. I’m working on trying lawsuits day and night.

That was a Thursday night, Ray. The next Tuesday afternoon, a pastor called me, and he said, I understand you are a Christian. I said, I am. He said, Well, I’d like to come see you. I said, “What about?” He said, I think I may have been sued for the the faith. I said, well, I’m sure you’re not, but bring me your papers. Let me take a look at it. Well, he came to see me later that afternoon and I looked at his papers and I said, you know what? You’ve been sued for the faith, no question about it. He said, well, would you help me?

I said, well, I’d be glad to help you, but let me make sure you understand something. I am a rookie, rookie lawyer. I said, the ink on my diploma is not half dry, and this is an incredibly serious lawsuit. You may want a lawyer far more experienced than me. He said, no, I believe God brought me to you. And he said, I don’t know how I’ll pay for this. I said, well, it’s interesting. We have a ministry that does this. He said, what is the name of it? I said, it doesn’t have a name. He said, how long have you have it? I said, since last Thursday. Priest, I will be honored to be your first client and help you with it ministry.

Unbeknownst to me, that lawsuit and all of the things that came out of it would go on for 14 years, and that gave us the right to have Christian schools and Christian education for children. I had no idea what God was going to do when my wife said, could we just tell God we’re available, and if he wants to use us, we will do it. And we’ll commit by faith to do this and never make a charge. That’s what God honored it, and that changed my life. People come up and thank me. They say, Oh, thank you for this. I said, you need to thank my wife. She was the one who stepped forward by faith and by the way, she’s the one who stayed faithful through doing it.

Oh, there’s been some very tough times and paying for these law suits. In an average year, we get in excess of 100000 calls a year seeking help and direction, and we have the privilege by faith of helping churches and individuals across America and in significant measure around the world. We, if I recall right, we’ve now done over 26 different countries where we’ve helped lawyers and people in other countries with religious. Never dreaming that our country would be in the position it’s in today, but it all started with, could you use us?

Ray: Oh, just and I wrote this down, David, you said that God is looking for someone to say, Lord, I’m available. I think that’s powerful and isn’t that where almost every great work that God uses his people for begins, is just with saying Lord here we are. Isn’t that where it always begins, oh, David?

David: It does. I had no idea what we were doing at the time, but my wife had a burden and what I have found worldwide with great people doing great things for God. Businessmen and pastors and moms and dads and people in the military and people in the workplace, what I’ve always found is God profoundly uses those who surrender and say, here am I, use me, and they submit palms up for the Lord. There’s a tendency in every one of our lives to want to play it safe. God used me, but I’ll let you know if I’m interested in what you’re talking about. God’s looking for somebody who says, by faith I want to be used. You bring it, by faith I’ll do it I’m available.

Ray: Amen. That is so powerful. So I’m reminded of that passage in Zachariah, I believe that it says, do not despise the day of humble beginnings. And so-

David: That’s right.

Ray: We had this pastor who reached out to you four or five days after you surrendered and offered up, your availability to the Lord four or five days later you’ve got your quote, first client, humble beginning, and today as you described, receiving over 100000 inquiries and phone calls annually for help. That is truly amazing. So David, take just a couple of moments here, walk us through just kind of at a high level, what types of cases and do you get involved with? What kinds of issues? Tell us who you help? Just help us understand the size and scope of what you’re doing at the Christian Law Association.

David: Let me give you just a 30000 foot view because it’s so pervasively broad. In 1969, it was unimaginable that churches especially were going to get sued for the faith. I mean, it’s always been a hallmark of America, freedom of religion. We had no idea that the things that we’re now experienced were on the horizon, but what we get every single day is churches who call and say, they’re telling us we can’t give the simple gospel message to children. People now want to say, if you tell children that they have to believe in Jesus Christ, that’s hate speech, and we get calls of that nature regularly. Of churches being threatened over their buildings, used to be communities wanted churches. Now all of a sudden we’re having communities say, that the community we used to live in business we don’t want any churches. We think we have enough, we don’t want any more at all.

And churches are literally being swayed in trying to grow and reach out to their communities. We get that type of call every day. We get staffs sued in deacons and elders and all kinds of church officers over a whole plethora of things. One of the things that’s happened when people get upset when they get mad, it used to be they got upset and they left. Now they stay and they sue and we’ve seen it. Just the heightened measure of litigation against people over things that would have never been lawsuits 20 years ago. We have a great deal of lawsuits for businessmen, are running their businesses. They’re wanting to be fair, wanting to be honest in the extreme, but what are the rights of business people to honor their faith? Can they have devotions for the people who want to come? Not who are forced to come, but who desire to come?

And can they put up signs honoring Jesus Christ, can they put up Bible verses in their place of business? We get litigation and threats over that type of thing all the time. Especially if they can say, well we think you’re just doing that to harass these people. I never dreamed anyone was going to say, the Bible and a simple Bible verse like John 3:16 is harassment to workers. Used to be virtually everybody knew that Bible verse. Now suddenly it’s a harassment term. We get it for workers in the workplace, especially high up executives, companies, large international companies saying, the corporate executives, we want you to adopt this new philosophy and it’s not just that you’re willing to go let it be.

We need you to give us a commitment that you will encourage and foster it and these Christian business executives have to say in good faith, I can’t do that. I’ll be fair. I’ll be honest. I will not discriminate, but you can’t ask me to encourage and foster those beliefs and lead people to believe that I’m for this. We get that. We get calls every day from parents. It amazes me the number of people who want to turn Christian parents in for simple things. Do you have the right to require your child to go to church with you? Used to be, we ran into this in high school level. Now it’s all the way down to elementary school level, we’re encountering it. The home I grew up in it never entered my mind Ray, to say to my parents, I don’t believe I’ll be going with you to church today.

Ray: Yeah.

David: I think it had to pick me up out of the carpet fibers if I said something like that. Now all of a sudden we have neighbors and school teachers and others turning parents in for simply wanting their children to accompany them to church or listen to a gospel message in Sunday school or somewhere like that. We get that type of call, all the time. We have a lot of calls from people in the military, especially chaplains. We have chaplains being told, you can say God, you can say Allah, you can say Muhammad, but we forbid you to say Jesus or Jesus Christ and these chaplains are saying, but that’s our faith, and these chaplains have been put in a lot of difficulty. I want to say we probably get a call on chaplains more than a couple of times a week, just asking for help. What can I do?

And we have a lot of government officials who call us and say, I’m on a school board, I’m in Congress. We’ve had US senators ask us to help them, and I’m a federal judge what can I do to honor the faith and I’m being told these are the limits that are being prescribed, and by the way, these limits of prescription to limit the faith are almost always unconstitutional, and we have the privilege of helping them stand. We get a lot of calls from just individuals in the community. You say our community is doing something, they will have a gay pride parade, but they won’t let us have a Christian parade. Is that legal? We get calls of that nature on a regular basis. Can we put up signs with Bible verses on them? What are we allowed to do in the election process? We get a lot of questions on that.

We cover a profound spectrum of religious Liberty. If you could listen to our phones for one day, it would startle you. This is our 50th year of doing this and every day I’m still startled, Ray. How in the world is this happening in America? How did we get to where we are, and now what do God’s people have to do? I profoundly believe that the Bible teaches the faith of the nation rests with God’s people. And if there was ever a day that God’s people need to have their voice be courageously heard, I believe it’s today,

Ray: David, I’m going to tell you, I’m just, I read the articles, I watch the news and those sorts of things and I understand it’s bad, but what you just walked us through it’s way beyond bad. It’s, we’re in crisis stage here and where is this coming from? Where is this, I’m going to call it an onslaught of just such anti bias of particularly against the name of Jesus. Where is this coming from?

David: Well, I personally believe three things in regard to that Ray, because, well, I’ve asked myself, how on my watch in my lifetime, how did we go from where this was unthinkable to where now it’s the rage of the day, how did we get there? And can I really believe three things. I believe, number one, God’s people grew comfortable, and we just never thought it would happen. So we never prepared for it to happen. We never got what the scripture calls, get our loins prepared with truth and being ready to take a stand because we didn’t think it would happen. Charles Haddon Spurgeon, the great London preacher, one of his greatest quotes of all time, Christianity can survive anything but prosperity. He said when prosperity sets in, when people get comfortable, prosperity takes over not taking a stand. And I think that happened and we’ve lived such an unbelievably comfortable, wonderful life here in America.

Our prosperity is blessed every one of us, the rest of the world cannot imagine how we live. I think that’s why so much of the world wants to try to get here. Can you can blame them, when they look at this prosperity, but that prosperity made us relax in regard to protecting these things, because what our forefathers fought for and were literally dying for and gave their lives for, we then just took for granted. And I think that was problem number one. Problem number two is I believe part of this is the judging hand of God, our nation with abortion and all of the other things that just, absolutely decry the faith. I believe that God is saying, listen, I will not allow this to continue to go on, and God’s people do nothing. And I really believe God is mercy and love. They’re showing a judging measure against us.

And then I believe the third thing, it takes boldness all through scripture, we’re commanded to be bold, courageous, and that takes a decision. And God’s people have not made that decision, in large measure we’re just sort of hoping we can solve this politically. And what I tell people is, if you think the answer is in Washington, you need to come to Washington to take a good look. Do you think it’s in the State capital? And we have been in, I think every state Capital helping with legislation, I may be wrong on that, but if not all of them, almost all of them. And the people there, they’re looking for direction.

And what I’m telling people is, God’s people are now at a point where we must speak out the truth. Having done all the stand fast, it is time for God’s people to show up and speak up. And that’s true nationwide and the scripture commands it. So that’s how I think we gravitated to this, now, I will tell you this, in my lifetime, what started out as a slow movement has gained great momentum and the velocity of this antichrist momentum today has absolutely accelerated beyond belief. If you track the last 10 years and especially the last five years, it’s unimaginable. We undid 300 years of history, 300 years of history in five years.

Ray: That’s stunning to me. And so the quote from Charles Spurgeon, Christianity can survive anything but prosperity, and I believe that for example, you mentioned abortion. Is it your opinion that the utter silence of the church is how this came to be? It seems like the battle lines are getting clear and clear. We’ve got some States that are passing legislation now saying even abortion up to the point of birth and maybe even beyond is going to be, okay.

David: That is correct.

Ray: And then, yeah.

David: Let me make sure the movement now, it’s not just abortion up to the point of birth, it is clearly abortion even after birth. I mean that’s where it is. People want to say, well that’s an extreme view. I couldn’t agree more but that is exactly where we are. Abortion was supposed to be under Roe V Wade within the first trimester and that was unbelievably problematic. Well now they’ve just blown right through all of that, and it was supposed to be, I had of where there was a sustainable life. Well now with the advances in medical science, babies could be sustained at way earlier birth times than ever before, and it has blown through all of that and has now gone to even after birth. And here’s the point that troubles me. They speak of it so casually. We will keep the baby comfortable and then decide with the parents what they want to do with the child, what are you saying?

And then the Christians don’t become alarmed in their hearts. I asked this Ray, I asked people, when is the last time you ever prayed any significant amount of time, that God would stop abortion. I find people are against it, but they don’t pray about it. Best people nationwide, if you ever spent an hour praying for righteousness and God to be honored in American, just one hour, have you ever done that ever? And wonderful people would say, no, I’ve never done that. Now we’ll watch Fox news or some other news outlet for an hour and think nothing of it, but God says the one thing that changes the course of a nation is prayer, and we can’t get God’s people sturdy enough to pray. I don’t go anywhere that people aren’t against abortion. They just don’t pray. They don’t speak up and they don’t stand up.

And I’m going to tell you right now, the people that are advancing this, well, a small percentage of the country, they absolutely stand up and speak up and their voice is capturing the airwaves. It is going to be critical for God’s people, to be God’s people. That’s our job, that’s why we’re here. We’re not here to live a comfortable life. And I’m so thankful for our prosperity. I enjoy it every day. But we’re here to be God’s people, and it’s going to take us absolute change in my heart and everybody’s heart. Am I willing to stand for the faith even with the voice that this world does not want to hear?

Ray: Okay, so, come to a very, very important part of this conversation. Recently I was speaking with a good friend of mine. He’s a follower of Christ, loves the Lord. He and his wife, we were having a conversation around what is happening in our country, around the issues that you and I are speaking right now. And he said, you know, Ray, we were just talking about this in our couples Bible study group. And we kind of came to the conclusion that we didn’t see in scripture where Jesus fought political issues. We didn’t see in scripture where Jesus, yeah, he spoke on things, but he was like render under Caesar what is Caesar and under God, what is God’s. So David, how do we help the followers of Christ understand that it’s not enough to just be against these things? What’s the consequence if we don’t take action?

David: Their scripture quote is exactly accurate, we’re to render to God the things that are God’s and the Caesar what belongs to Caesar. What we’re talking about are issues that belong to God because they are scriptural issues. This is not a Democrat question, a Republican question, an independent question, it’s not a tea party question, this is a Bible issue. Do we believe in the sanctity of life? Do we believe without question that God created male and female by design and do we know that in scripture what the Bible says about all of these new gender ideas, these are not political issues, they’re scriptural issues.

And that’s why I tell everybody, abortion is not political issue it’s a Bible issue, but we find very few Christians who see it as a Bible issue and that’s a fault of the teaching we’ve received and it’s a fault of our own inquiry because there’s wonderful work, stop there that explained from scripture exactly what God says about these issues. So what I tell them is, you’re exactly right. We’re going to render to Caesar the things that are Caesar’s, but we’re going to render to God the things that are God’s, and these Bible issues are biblical, they’re God’s issues. And that’s why we must stand with so much courage.

Ray: Well, thank you. That’s excellent. Thank you for that. So we’ve talked about some of the issues, some of the attacks, and we talked earlier, David, you just said the phones are open 24/7 for your organization to help and come alongside Christians. How do you all with over a hundred thousand calls each year, how do you walk through the process to discern, hey, this is a case we can take on, or here’s someone we can help versus I’m sure it’s painful to turn anyone away, but how do you and your team walk through that discernment process?

David: We received some calls from unusual people and unusual face. We tell them, you have to be right on the person of Jesus Christ and salvation through his cross and his shed blood, or we do not entertain the hell. We want them to have, we refer them to good lawyers, but we do not do those cases. You have to be right on the person of Jesus Christ. And the second thing is, the way we help them, one of our great goals is to make lawsuits not happen. I know some groups that I’m afraid they want to raise and stir litigation. We believe the best hope is to resolve things. So we do everything in our power to make a lawsuit go away. And fortunately we’re able to do that by far a majority of the time. Now we litigate and we litigate a lot. I have litigated and been involved in cases in all 50 States, most of them multiple times in front of 15 Supreme courts.

We’ve had cases up to the US Supreme court and the bottom line is, we litigate. We’re litigators, but we only want to litigate if we have done everything in our power to have this resolved. Where God’s people have their liberties protected without having to go through a lawsuit. I believe the Bible teaches as much as lies within you live at peace with all men. Before we get someone into a lawsuit, we try to do everything we can to peaceably get this resolved, and God has blessed that for 50 years. There just come points where you can’t and you’d have to litigate and you have to take a stand. We’ve had people say to us, and government say to us, I don’t know why, but we’re going to resolve this in your favor. I’ve heard that hundreds of times and that’s just the Lord undertaking, and honoring what these Christians are doing.

Then if we have to litigate, we go at it, and we have our own in house staff. We have about 150 lawyers who help us nationwide, and then we’ve had over 500 lawyers who have helped in cases we can call on and step in when we request it. I get thanks for so many cases and I have to tell people I knew about it in general, but it was the good gracious Christian lawyers in our ministry who handled this for you. You’re thinking the wrong person, and so I always tell them it’s because God has raised up a team. I could never do this. It started with just me, but it stayed just me for a short period of time, because it grew way beyond anything I could ever imagine.

Ray: Okay. That’s perfect. Thank you so much for that. So David, let me ask you this. You’ve got this amazing army of Christ loving attorneys, what’s that look like for say, the next generation of leadership for the Christian Law Association? Is God bringing around the succession plan so that there are those behind you?

David: Well, absolutely, Ray, everyone recognizes eventually mans energy runs out. That’s God’s plan. I have run hard, we’ve attempted to be diligent, but the bottom line is eventually someone has to take your place. There have to be those who step up. One of the blessings we have is we have people coming through law school and out of law school, who went to law school because of our ministry. They said, we want to do that, we want legal missionaries, and we have the privilege of bringing them on. Coming through our mentoring program, and we have judges now that came through our mentoring program, who help us regularly, and we have lawyers across the country who’ve done it. Everyone has to plan a replacement. I hope God gives me the length of days, but I have to count on everyday and live it as so it could be my last. That’s what the Bible says. No one is guaranteed tomorrow. This could be the last interview you do, Ray. This could be the last interview I do.

Ray: That’s right.

David: This could be it, and we have to be ready for that moment. I know what will happen to me when I die because of my salvation through Jesus Christ. But there has to be someone to take over the responsibility, and I tell everybody, you want to be sure that you’re not just having a plan, but that you’re training the leaders. You have to have somebody, and we have a number of-

Ray: Fantastic.

David: Let me say one further thing about these young lawyers coming up. They are trained so much better than I was ever trained. I received a great legal training, but boy, the training they’re receiving now, they are truly better lawyers than I’ve ever been. And I crave that for the cause of Christ. I want people way better than me. I want people that have been trained better, who have a more fervent heart for God. A leader is in trouble when you want to be the pinnacle of admiration. None of us deserve that position. We’re all unprofitable servants, that’s what the scripture says. And so these young people coming on, men and women, these background people are the real heroes, they’re the real circle.

Ray: Yeah, that’s right.

David: And so I tell everybody, make sure you’re preparing people who going to be able, not just to do it, but to do it with more distinction and better able to do it. That’s a leader’s job.

Ray: Fantastic. Thank you for that. So David, as we kind of wind down our conversation here, I want to ask you to maybe help me with something here. Let’s imagine that there’s someone listening to our program right now. Maybe they’re a business owner or a leader in a company, and I know what I’m about to ask is a little unfair because there’s always details, there’s always new answers and so forth. But would you mind sharing maybe two or three does and two or three don’ts as far as sharing and or living out our faith in business and in leadership in the marketplace?

David: Number one, I would encourage that business owner, that leader to understand that what they have does not belong to them, if they’re a believer, if they know Jesus Christ as savior, the Bible says we’ve been bought with a price, therefore glorify God in your body and in your spirit, now what I have is not mine it belongs to the Lord. What they have is not theirs. Make sure they’re holding it, palms up understanding, I’m a steward and that’s what the Bible says. A steward is not an owner. A steward is a trusted caretaker.

God put this in their hands to be held for him. So don’t act as if it’s yours. And don’t make decisions exclusively as it’s yours. I have to battle this all the time in my own life. I think, well, I did this. No, I didn’t do this, but for God, none of this would’ve ever happened, and I cannot act as if it’s mine. They cannot act as if it’s theirs, the greatest key to unraveling a life is to start treating things as if they’re yours rather than you’re a steward holding it for God. So you want to make sure you keep reminding yourself of that. The second thing I tell them that’s an absolute do, is you have to keep your walk with God on principle. We all become accustomed to what we deal with.

We all learned the business principles of our industry at all, and we get where we can do all of this and suddenly we’re so busy we don’t have time for God, especially two T’s. Number one, prayer. Number two, reading the word of God. I get business owners all the time and I say to them, tell me about your prayer life. How much time? Show me your prayer list. What are you praying for? There’s nothing more powerful in the universe than prayer. Prayer moves the arm of the almighty and God says ask and you shall receive, but then he gives this stern warning, He said, you have not because you ask not. I get business people especially, and I say, why are you asking for so little? How did your prayer life get so negligent? What impossible things are you asking for? Make sure that you’ve got a daily time in the world.

Now a man that revolutionized my life was a man that said, listen, do you understand? And about an hour a day you can read through the whole Bible in 30 days. What are you doing to keep the word of God in you? Faith comes by hearing and hearing by the word. And then number two, what are you doing with your prayer? The third thing that I caution them, it’s take time to be a dad, to be a husband. Here’s what I discovered. Life is so busy, there’s no time for family. They become an add on. There’s no time for your precious bride, and she becomes someone who helps you get everything done, but she’s not an add on. What I’ve discovered in my life and in the lives of many men, only what goes on the calendar gets done. The reason we’re having this interview today, Ray, is it went on the calendar.

The thought that we would have this absent in getting on the calendar is minus zero. If you’re going to do something with your family, they are the most important calendar item you’ve have. Get them on the calendar and protect it, it’s the most important thing you have on the calendar. You’re not a success if you destroy your family and it’s normally through negligence. Good people neglected their family and then one day the family grows up and you’ll say, how did this happen? It happened very simply. They never got dad or mom’s time. And so I encourage people, put that family on the calendar and guard it jealously, it’ll be the most important investment you make this life.

Ray: So those are three incredible things. Living palms up, what we have does not belong to us it belongs to God, we need to keep our walk with God in principle, discipline of prayer, time in his word, and then taking time to be that spouse, to be that parent, to be that mother, father, husband, wife, that God is calling us to be. I love that. I love that.

David: And Ray, those are daily challenges in my life.

Ray: That’s right.

David: I’ve never met anyone who has mastered them. But the people who do it well make it a priority every day.

Ray: Phenomenal.

David: I have to remind myself of those three things every morning. I can’t lose my time of prayer. Can’t lose my time in the word, or I won’t be with the people need that are trying to get help from me.

Ray: That’s right.

David: And I cannot undermine my family. That has to be a daily commitment. Get that calendar and then keep your time and prayer and Bible. It’s commanded in scripture. We have to do it.

Ray: Not an option. That’s right. So David, I want you to think back and answer this question. What piece of advice would you give to the 20 year old David Gibbs?

David: Number one, if they desire to be used by God, get prepared. Get prepared because it’s critical that you get spiritually prepared and that you get professionally prepared. And I know young people today, they want to do all the practical things, and what I tell them is you’re putting the tools together. Your education puts tools in your bag that you can use for God. Whatever that pursuit is, doesn’t have to be law. Get the preparation, get the training and do it well. And then number two, you have to start preparing now, these young people I reach, they say, well, the point is going to come on, I’m going to get a great prayer life. The point is going to come that I served with church. No, that point will never come.

There’s always reasons not to do things for God. You have to start now and that’s why, for example, when I interview people that are coming in, that want to be with our ministry, I tell them, I want to talk to where you’re serving, who are you serving? They’re not going to serve well with us because they haven’t served well before they get to us. People don’t just turn a magic moment. It’s in preparation by decision. So I tell these young people, want to makes sure you’re spiritually on track, your Bible reading, your prayer, your serving, and then make sure that in some measure you’re already serving, even though it doesn’t matter at what level.

One of our very best lawyers that we have, he started serving at church as a parking lot attendance. They needed people helping get tires, a place where there’s a lot of snow and ice and I mean to stand out there and freezing rain and snow and ice. That was great servanthood training. He is a phenomenal servant, and so I tell everybody, you want to be great. God says the greatest among you would be the servant of all.

Ray: Fantastic. It’s about preparation. And so finally then those who listened to our program on a regular basis know that my very last question I always asked this question of every guest is based out of Proverbs 4:23, I call this my 423 question, where Solomon writes these words, he says, “Above all else, guard your heart for all of life flows from it.” Let’s say that you have a chance to gather your family, your friends, your loved ones, those who are most precious to you, and you get a chance to pass along the single most important piece of advice. And I’d like you to pass that advice along to our audience today. David, fill in the blank for us above all else-

David: Guard your heart, and Ray, you know that word heart there it doesn’t mean the one pumping in our chest. It’s a command center of life that’s in us. It’s where you make all the decisions and emotions and everything, it’s the heart. When we say come into my heart, Lord Jesus, we’re asking him to control that command center of everything. And what I would add to that is that I believe you can’t guard your heart without surrendering it to Him. That word guard there is written in the continuum. It isn’t something you do once, and you don’t kneel and say, okay, I’m guarding my heart. And you say there, that’s it. This is an ongoing, you have to ask every day for God by his spirit and guard your heart and to lead you. God wants to lead you, the steps of a good man are ordered of the Lord.

The Bible says, in all your ways, surrender to him. He wants to lead you. But the world says, no, no, no, you’re a big boy, you’re a big girl, you can handle this. You want God to help you, but you can handle this, you make the decisions. Make sure that that heart is guarded before you make decisions. Every decision I’ve made that was a catastrophe was when I did not have my heart guarded. Ask the Lord to lead it and keep leading it, and whatever you do, don’t make major decisions without submitting it to the Lord and putting it hands up to him.

Ray: Yeah. Fantastic. David, if our audience wants to connect with you, learn more, what’s the best way for them to do so?

David: The easiest way is Christian on the worldwide web. We’d be honored to hear from them if they want to call us toll free, (888) 252-1969 or they can write us at post office box 8600, Mason Ohio 45040. Thank you for the privilege, Ray of allowing us to be with your interview today.

Ray: David, this has just been phenomenal, well folks as I said at the very beginning, we got incredible counsel today we got incredible wisdom and knowledge. We learned more about the fight that we are in literally for the soul, the heart and soul of our nation, the heart and soul of the marketplace. So I want to thank you for joining us today. We get asked quite a bit here at Bottom Line Faith, what’s the most important thing that you can do to help us? As David said today, pray, pray for God’s continue favor and anointing here. The second thing we’d like to ask you to consider is go online give us a review on today’s conversation. Share it with your friends, your family, your coworkers, your associates. Help us get the word out on these conversations. So until next time, I am your host Ray Hilbert here at Bottom Line Faith, encouraging you to live out your faith every day in the marketplace. God bless and we’ll see you next time.