What Business You Should Start, Based on Your Personality Type: Part 1 - Rationals and Idealists

If you believe what you read, then running your own business is an option reserved for just a few personalities. ENTPs (Steve Jobs), ENFPs (Arianna Huffington), ENTJs (Warren Buffet) and INTJs (Bill Gates and Mark Zuckerberg) are hailed as the “street smart” types most likely to do well out of entrepreneurship. The thread here is the bias towards Intuition over Sensing – a tendency to focus on the future and take risks.

Yet these are far from the only permutations that can successfully run businesses. Oprah Winfrey, Jeff Bezos and Richard Branson have different types than the ones above, but it’s difficult to argue that they lack the personality traits to be successful entrepreneurs!

Here at Truity, we believe that anyone can develop a successful small business regardless of their traits and preferences. You’ll just have more success if you choose a venture that matches who you are.

With that in kind, let’s take a look at the type of business you might consider running based on your personality type. Up this week, the two temperaments that are theoretically made to go it alone: NT – The Rationals and NF – The Idealists.

ENTP

It’s said that ENTPs have the “entrepreneurial genius” gene. And there’s no denying that you are the type most likely to generate a ton of attractive business ideas! So, for you, it’s less about what business you should start and more about choosing the one good idea to turn into a business venture. It doesn’t matter if your passion is PR, fitness, market research, software sales or creating a new search engine just for doctors. You just need to pick something. Don’t get too caught up in creating the perfect business idea before you take the leap.

Avoid businesses where you have to act as “general manager.” You won’t find enough freedom in a franchise business built around someone else’s rules. Since focus is an issue (it’s no secret that you get bored easily), consider working with a whip-smart partner who can take care of the details and keep you focused until your idea succeeds, or it fails. The hard part will be giving up control of your “baby.” It’s tough for you to let other people handle tasks which you could probably do better yourself, if you were sufficiently motivated. But it’s necessary.  

INTP

Google founders Larry Page and Sergey Brin are thought to be INTPs, and a creative Thinking type like you definitely might enjoy a tech startup or a business that involves above-average problem-solving skills. You’re likely to find inspiration though poking holes in inventions already on the market, so keep a note of the things you might improve on. INTPs often start an enterprise based on their science, tech or engineering skill after some time in the workforce. Product design, tech repair, tutoring/education, programming, web development and manufacturing businesses are a good fit.

Avoid interpersonal businesses where your chance of success is based around relationships. Leave sales to Extraverted Feelers or hire one to do the marketing for you. You’ll likely find it hard to manage employees, suppliers and customers so partner with someone who fills these deficiencies. Or consider an online business where the majority of interactions take place over email or telephone.

INTJ

INTJs are wonderful “ideas people” who have the enviable ability to plan, focus and put their ideas into action. This means you probably can start any business you set your mind to. But you’re particularly suited to consultancy roles where you can demonstrate your expertise. Business development, IT consulting, marketing and analytics agency, software development, virtual project management, virtual assistant – like INTPs, you’ll probably start a 9 to 5 job you enjoy, see how poorly it is run, then decide you can do better.

The biggest challenge is reaching out to customers and marketing your business. By nature, you like to observe, research, then quietly get on with doing things. To succeed in the business world, you’ll have to get comfortable with your ideas being exposed for all the world to see. Hire an Extravert if necessary to do the marketing and sales.

ENTJ

Like ENTPs, ENTJs can brainstorm ideas, think big and spot opportunities in the market. Unlike ENTPs, you’re more likely to strike when the iron’s hot with your business idea! So, for you, it’s largely a question of timing. Good industries include the business, finance, technology, medical, legal and consulting fields – anywhere where you can be a rainmaker. You have a super-high risk tolerance and are not intimidated by ventures that require large capital, so of all the types, when you launch a business, you’re capable of going big.

Avoid franchises, agencies or distributorship since these do not allow you to shape things to your liking. Your other challenge is working with people – you are much better leader than manager and need to surround yourself with others who can manage the processes, details and people.  

ENFP

ENFPs are rarely happy in the rat race and, as a bona fide ideas factory, you’re among the best at starting your own business. The key is picking one possible business option out of many and doing it with your whole heart. Businesses that offers plenty of variety and informal relationships are a great fit for you – think small business coaching, training workshops, travel agency, entertainment/nightlife businesses, marketing agency, journalism, anything in the design field, a retail store of some kind or an event planning consultancy. Any business where you already have the contacts, interpersonal skills, networks and are socially confident is a good place to start.

Your biggest stumbling block is getting started, because to start one business is to close off other options. For you, it’s worth maintaining your day job while getting your business idea off the ground. Once the business has taken off and is doing well, hire staff to keep if running. Then you can start something else!  

INFP

INFPs excel in the areas they really care about, so it’s important to launch a business that means something special to you. Look for business ideas that involve people in a non-confrontational environment. Not-for-profits, tutoring, counselling, publishing, coaching/mentoring, landscape gardening, aesthetician, art and design, and tech businesses are good options for you since they’re about more than just payroll and profit.

Retail (a funky little bookstore, perhaps?) could also be your game since you’re good at nurturing customer relationships and often do well in businesses that involve keeping clients for the long term. But you’ll need to teach yourself some soul-sucking business skills like networking and marketing. Keep visualizing the light at the end of the tunnel – it’s a great way for you to overcome some of your perceived limitations and convince yourself that you can run a business on your terms.

ENFJ

ENFJs are great “people people” who love the spotlight. You will thrive in any business that allows you to put on a show! At the same time, you need to do good in the world or your business will feel empty and meaningless. Try to balance these aspects when brainstorming your options. Anything in the field of counselling, consultancy, web design, ecommerce, marketing, personal branding, and anything involving customer service or giving strategic advice in your specialty area is a good fit for you.

Your ability to win people over is unrivalled, so finding customers shouldn’t be much of a problem. But you might need help organizing the practical end of the business. Having a supportive partner or circle is crucial to ENFJ business owners, since you may need a push when making the tough decisions seems a little too challenging.

INFJ

The best businesses for INFJs usually have a strong creative element (stylist, aesthetician, wedding photography, anything in the art and design field, selling your homemade products) or a heavy people-development focus (opening a home day care center or tutoring agency). Another option is coaching in whatever you know how to do. These days, it’s possible to coach people in just about anything – marketing, finance, careers, lifestyle, nutrition, relationships, sports. It’s hard for you to feel passionate about a business unless you feel really connected with what you are doing, so coaching is a great fit for you.

Self-confidence is an issue, so start by doing something you know how to do. Having an existing network also makes it easier for you to promote your business. Accept, too, that there is something about the concept of “business” that feels very uncomfortable to you. You need to trust that there is such a thing as healthy competition, and that you don’t have to compromise your principles to find success.  

Is Starting Your Own Business the Answer?

There are tons of resources out there to help you choose a conventional career based on your type, but very little guidance for the would-be entrepreneur who wants to choose a business that suits their personality. I hope this article has closed some of that gap – but you’ll likely want some more advice before you hang the “we’re open” sign on the door.  

The good news is, you can use existing career resources to understand yourself better from an entrepreneurial standpoint. Instead of looking at the specific job titles that are recommended for you, look at what it takes to succeed in those jobs. Is it an inherent need for structure and systems? An ability to prospect and build relationships? An ability to think outside the box and break the rules? Use these insights to rank yourself against the four major business-ownership models: agency, consulting, small business startup and franchises. The more suitable the model, the better off you'll be!

Tune in next week, when I’ll be taking a look at the type of businesses that will set Artisans (SP) and Guardians (SJ) up for success. And if you’re a Rational or Idealist business owner, we’d love to hear from you. What business have you launched? What obstacles did you come up against? Do you have advice for other would-be entrepreneurs? Let us know in the comments below!

Jayne Thompson

Jayne is a freelance copywriter, business writing blogger and the blog editor here at Truity. One part word nerd, two parts skeptic, she helps writing-challenged clients discover the amazing power of words on a page. Jayne is an INTJ and lives in Yorkshire, UK with her ENTJ husband and two baffling children. Find Jayne at White Rose Copywriting.

Comments

Christian Brauchle (not verified) says...

Outstanding post Jayne!
I could totally related to the INTJ business type description.
The challenge for me has been and still is to motivate and influence people in spite of being a rational introvert... 
There's a lot of people that need the 'emotional kick' to get things done, not just the 'bottomline approach' that most INTJs use as the kicker.
The other aspect of being an entrepreneur that I've struggled with is 'interruptions' and dealing with all sorts of stakeholders, staff, vendors, prospects, service providers on a daily basis... as an INTJ I like to block time slots to think, strategize and get things done, but things such as leading teams and being out there selling/presenting are necessary for a business to flourish...
These are just my opinions and I'd be happy for other NTs to provide their views.

Christian
 

Lc (not verified) says...

Funny you mention your type because as an ENFP my purpose is to "influence, motivate, and mentor others" in Leadership and Management training workshops. Basically inspire and motivating is what I feel a mission in life to do.  It has taken years even decades to come to this revelation.  I like working with gifted individuals as I am one and you are a rare personality type along with INFJ's.  The NT are I have been told evenly compatible with us NF idealists.  I have not met any NT or even NF in my neck of the woods.  It is interesting to see how you come out when you do find NF who could get your idea off the ground. Take it you sweat when asked to public speak?? LOL!

Jara (not verified) says...

I'm an INFP and you totally nailed it. I managed "a funky little bookstore" that my family owned! It was a used bookstore with primarily trade transactions and "weird rules". :-)

During my senior year in business school, I was offered the opportunity to manage the bookstore but declined. It took 8 more years to finally accept the call! So I experienced 8 years' worth of experience in a very short amount of time. At least 1 crazy crisis every day. I learned invaluable lessons about myself, others, and the grace of God for completing difficult assignments that are ordained by Him to be successful.

Lc (not verified) says...

Hey Jara, I visit my local library every other day and not a day goes by when I think of starting my own but where I live is limiting and will have to move to a much more friendlier and open-minded environment where I can flourish and be around more progressive thinkers. Your "bookstore" business sounds dreamy!  I would have liked to start a cafe/bookstore/art studio type of thing.  Dreaming of the concept for my teenage children who are very gifted artistically and musically, I am strongly considering doing it when I find a secure location, investors, and funds. I would want my own children to follow their own path but hope they would want to take on the family enterprise when they are ready!  Like hearing about your journey about the bookstore. Where is your bookstore? 

Jara (not verified) says...

Hi LC. Thanks for your reply. Our bookstore was located in a conservative city in the ultra "progressive" SF Bay Area. It's quite challenging to run a family business, but it's infinitely rewarding when you start to see and enjoy the "fruits" of your labor (like motherhood!).

We sold our bookstore a few years ago - shortly after I left because I did not want to work with my mom anymore (which is also the reason why it took me so long to say yes to managing the store in the first place!). We both love books, have business degrees, and value philanthropy, but we have opposing personality types, mindsets, methods, work styles, etc.

I now realize that our "clashing" styles are what makes us a complete partnership that produces "good fruit" (disciples, profits, etc.). For example, when our first business intern "graduated" out of our internship program, he wrote in his exit evaluation that he learned so much about business and life in such a short time and that he enjoyed how it felt like "a family". My mom and I "shared" him as an intern. I managed him in the store for sales and marketing projects. She managed him from outside the store for technical and online projects.

My mom had been searching for a business that we could run together for years before we decided on a bookstore. The opportunity to buy her favorite small bookstore "suddenly" presented itself when the owner became terminally ill but didn't want to close the store. The sister of a college friend who I tutored in accounting was in a position to get our bank loan approved (miracle!). 

The first person I hired came in after being rejected by other retail managers in the business park. She was too "bohemian" for them. I interviewed her on the spot and had a vision of her managing a successful open mic event. 3 months later, she organized a successful open mic event as her last summer project for us before starting college. She and all of her creative friends performed music, poetry, etc. Her conservative parents (dad's a priest!) came in to celebrate her "graduation" with us. She constantly brought her abused friends in to work or volunteer there...and be healed. She plans to be a nurse. 

The second person I hired came in as an abused, fearful tutor in a wrong romantic relationship but was scared to leave her job and dump her boyfriend. While working for us, she graduated into leaving the tutoring job, dumping her stifling boyfriend, becoming my assistant manager, marrying her best friend (who had a secret crush on her for years!) and having a baby with him.

The 3rd person I hired came in with her mom whose dream was to own a bookstore. It wasn't her dream but she was scared to tell her pushy mom, so I "fired" her even though I loved her as an employee. Hopefully, she has "graduated" into being more assertive about pursuing her own path. On and on...

All of the staff members who completed their "internships" with us graduated into their higher callings: started as a thief but graduated into a philanthropist, started as an abused psychology major but graduated into teaching overseas, started out scared of management responsibility (like me!) but graduated into dreaming of owning businesses, etc.

My mom and I have both moved on to positions that require us to officially teach and counsel people as we learn our own lessons (e.g., how to work well with clashing personalities!) in order to permanently graduate away from each other. ;-) I left managing our store to manage a nonprofit that teaches business skills to various underserved groups, including at-risk youth and the homeless. Now I serve in churches (Bible studies, youth ministries, food programs, etc.). My mom helps philanthropic corporations by teaching them how to pass their audits.

Like you, I visit my local library every other day (after not visiting for years because of an overdue fine)...where my mom donated books and I donate wisdom. They collect and give away food and provide shelter for the homeless. Last year, they initiated a "fine forgiveness program" to encourage people who've been away for a long time to return. The journey continues...

It's not a coincidence that you have a dream to start a family bookstore. It's probably a stepping stone to positively impact many people's lives, including your children's. Where are you located? How is your area "limiting"? The "limitations" may be the obstacles to overcome for your growth and the key selling points that differentiate your business! 

Good comes to those who lend money generously and conduct their business fairly. - Psalms 112:5 

If you help the poor, you are lending to the Lord — and He will repay you!
- Proverbs 19:17 

Once I was young, and now I am old. Yet I have never seen the godly abandoned or their children begging for bread. - Psalms 37:25

We can make our plans, but the Lord determines our steps. - Proverbs 16:9

"For I know the plans I have for you,” says the Lord. “They are plans for good and not for disaster, to give you a future and a hope." - Jeremiah 29:11 

A third time [Jesus] asked [Simon Peter], “Simon son of John, do you love me?”

Peter was hurt that Jesus asked the question a third time.

He said, “Lord, you know everything. You know that I love you.”

Jesus said, “Then feed my sheep."

(John 21:17)

 

JESUS: “Yes, I am the vine; you are the branches. Those who remain in Me, and I in them, will produce much fruit. For apart from Me you can do nothing.  When you produce much fruit, you are My true disciples. This brings great glory to My Father. You didn’t choose Me. I chose you. I appointed you to go and produce lasting fruit, so that the Father will give you whatever you ask for, using My name.  This is My command: Love each other."

(John 15:5‭, ‬8‭-‬8‭, ‬16‭-‬17)

Lc (not verified) says...

Hi Jara! Wow! those scriptures are many of the verses I feel God has commissioned me to teach and preach on when I start speaking at places myself.  I love Proverbs, especially about the cause of the poor (like Proverbs 31:8, 9 and Isaiah 1:17).  When I mention "limitations", I meant living in a rural/urban area of Mississippi. I live in the Mid-South, which is the Tri-state area (West TN, Eastern AR, and NW MS). Metropolitan area next to the MS river.  This county area is DeSoto County and is very closed-minded, still racist and prejudiced and as a black resident, there is always that sentiment that we are nothing and ignorant people.  I am a highly, intelligent and gifted graduate student of Psychology with management certification and MS is not the stuff of dreams.  I am bigger than MS, the whole southern area combined!  God never keeps me in one place for long, so I will be moving somewhere better soon!  I am just here to learn what I needed to learn about myself and grow, get my children back and live life that I didn't before. 

I have been through some rough stuff since moving here, not for the weak!  Had to overcome parental abuse and trauma (mainly mental, physical, and emotional), then abuse from both of my children's fathers who covertly took my children from me.  Living in extreme poverty and financial hardship for years is like a prison. No freedom. All I have are ideas, a love of learning and adventure, and the future in my heart. 

I have been told by a select few that I have a special gift that is very rare. I know what it is now and it is indeed very rare.  As a compassionate idealist and empath, I do not fit anywhere and feel like an alien in this world. My children are like this too.  I always read about people like me and very rarely meet them in person but I always read or hear about people trying to belong or finding where they belong and fit. Well, I decided to forge a path for myself and help lead others in the right way.  Why do I need to find a path when I can help others find the path they need to travel on?  People many times, well-meaning or just jerks, ask me do I have a job or do I work? I am beginning to tell them I AM THE JOB! or I AM THE WORK!  Puzzled, I let them marinate on this.  A realist can't get it but an idealist gets it if they are paying attention.   Most people work for a living, to pay bills, take trips, raise children, for me it was backwards. I had to FIND MYSELF or discover who I am then create the work/life/dream job or whatever they are calling it these days, lol! That meant heal from wounds, forgive, trauma, abuse, then self-reflect, self-knowledge, self-awareness, learn about SELF instead of people-please as I was forced to do growing up with parents, siblings, others. 

I am an imaginative, creative, and kind-hearted person who was rejected by my relatives for being different (thinking, acting, believing, performing) they didn't know what to do with me, especially my parents and siblings.  Still to this day, they do not support me in anything I desire to do or have my back but I am okay with it because I have been on a journey to ACTUALIZE who I was destined to really be. 

Self-love and self-forgiveness had to be in order and that has helped me see the life in a vivid way, I had never done before!  I didn't go to a counselor or therapist to do this but to my Divine Creator, God, and seek His counsel.  Once I begin to love myself and treat myself better, stay away from toxic people, and surround myself with the right spiritual people, begin working with what He gave me, I believe things will fall in place. I have many entrepreneurial ideas and have an entrepreneurial spirit, however, I need to move away from here and obtain transportation to get around and do what needs to be done.  The first step was to focus on me and develop into becoming someone I need to be for God's ultimate purpose, whatever that "being" is supposed to be.  Personal Growth and Development are goals of mine to teach because too many people, especially women, do not consider it to be a worthy route to success.  My bio father has always been self-employed as a car mechanic, an entrepreneur.  My step-father (my mother remarried, but divorced him recently after 2 years) is a successful businessman selling tamales and has for years.  My mother has never stepped up to the plate to be one and only wants to marry for security and didn't marry for love.  Marriage of convenience is all I have seen from her. 

 

I, on the other hand, strive for being a entrepreneur, businesswoman, philanthropist, leader, teacher, minister, humanitarian, trailblazer/pioneer, author, and nurturing mom to many (young and old), not just my children.   My purpose is to help others find their purpose or achieve their dreams, whichever comes first. Don't care as long as it gets achieved.  I will be the first on my mother's side to become an entrepreneur as there are none on that side. No one has ever attempted it.  The Lord to me He gave me all I needed to make it happen, he just had to work on my confidence and faith.  Thank you for replying back.  I don't post often since I don't like to write, prefer to talk really.  Your post has sparked a renewed interest to visit Cali. Hope to stay in touch.

 

Love, 

From one dreamer to another 

Jara (not verified) says...

Hi again LC,

It sounds like you have several books' worth of testimonies in you (smile)! Your story reminds me of Joseph (a fellow dreamer!) in Genesis. He learned a valuable lesson from his pain:

So they sent this message to Joseph:

“Before your father died, he instructed us to say to you: ‘Please forgive your brothers for the great wrong they did to you—for their sin in treating you so cruelly.’ So we, the servants of the God of your father, beg you to forgive our sin.”

When Joseph received the message, he broke down and wept. Then his brothers came and threw themselves down before Joseph.

“Look, we are your slaves!” they said.

But Joseph replied, “Don’t be afraid of me. Am I God, that I can punish you? You intended to harm me, but God intended it all for good. He brought me to this position so I could save the lives of many people. No, don’t be afraid. I will continue to take care of you and your children.”

So he reassured them by speaking kindly to them.

(Genesis 50:16‭-‬21)

Our physical, emotional, relational, socioeconomic, racial, geograpical, familial, etc. "limitations" are usually God's way of maturing us for the greater blessings ahead. They prepare and challenge us to bloom where ever we are planted.

For example, by "conservative", I mean racist (you caught that! lol). My mom and I are black and we owned a business (a bookstore?!) in a place where less than .00000000007% of blacks own businesses (and the prevailing belief is that blacks do not value education). Many of our rich, white, old customers were offended when they found out that the store is ours, that we're not just workers there. They "suddenly" constantly argued about the prices, complained about everything, and tried to exploit our generous store policies, which made serving them a headache. As the general manager, I had to deal with their undercover racism and elitism every day - not to mention the insubordination of the white women who we "inherited" as employees from the previous owner. They got mad when we stopped letting them "self-manage" (embezzle). I replaced them with a new crew. 

But that experience was the beginning of God upgrading me in forgiveness, love, peace, joy, kindness, and self-control (see Galatians 5:22-23) and understanding of how to apply His Word in daily life (e.g., love the unloveable people!).

My family is from the South. I'm the only one who was born and semi-raised in CA. So I had to go through the store trials to prepare me for acing my love tests in the South (God moves me around to learn and teach lessons, too!). As you know, southern racism is overt, whereas the racism in CA is covert because it's frowned upon in a "progressive" area like the Bay. So the racists out here are super sneaky with their hate. To convict them, you need Jesus. You've heard of microaggressions, right? Imagine having evidence that old white women are stealing from you and damaging your property because they are angry that their favorite business is black-owned, but the white cops that you call just laugh it off because they're racist, too, so you must handle it "yourself" (i.e., bring it to God so He can handle it; see Romans 12:17-21).

Next, God used a southern white racist woman to try to test whether I've really learned my love lesson. I passed. Instead of snatching her, I was gracious. The white southern cops that she called on me helped me instead of her and one told me that she regularly baits blacks into anger so that they can be arrested. He suggested that I file a report on her. He offered to be my witness...and helped me carry my baggage (including the Bible in my hand).

Then, God brought me back to the Bay Area and used rich whites, black unbelievers, AND Christian blacks of multiple economic backgrounds to persecute me simultaneously. Why? To show me that my true enemy is not flesh and blood or a demographic (e.g., a race of people or an economic status). Dealing with various types of "haters" taught me to fight my battles spiritually (e.g. with God's Word and prayer) rather than with carnal weapons (e.g., academic degrees, human law, and/or fists). See Ephesians 6 and 2 Corinthians 10.

So our "limitations" are really God's way of training us for higher levels of ministry. Sometimes, we need to be pruned by the fires of oppression before we can be released to minister to more diverse groups of people. Before my financial and social troubles, I was way too proud to be compasionate to EVERYONE the way that God wants. But my hardships and "haters" humbled me! It's not just the homeless person or the abused person who needs love. The rich racists need to experience God's love and grace in action, too. They knew that I wanted to punch them in the face but I didn't. Instead, I thanked them and blessed them. How? Jesus loves and saves! Forgiveness is a powerful testimony.

So I praise God that you have overcome so much neglect, abuse, and hatred and are learning to love yourself. I encourage you to look for how He wants to use you where you are to demonstrate His love, grace, mercy, justice, etc. to the people who are around you right now. The harder the struggle, the greater the testimony for God's glory. ;-)

Proverbs 24:23‭-‬25:

Here are some further sayings of the wise: It is wrong to show favoritism when passing judgment. A judge who says to the wicked, “You are innocent,” will be cursed by many people and denounced by the nations. But it will go well for those who convict the guilty; rich blessings will be showered on them.

Matthew 5:1‭-‬20‭, ‬43‭-‬48:

One day, as He saw the crowds gathering, Jesus went up on the mountainside and sat down. His disciples gathered around him, and He began to teach them.

“God blesses those who are poor and realize their need for Him, for the Kingdom of Heaven is theirs. God blesses those who mourn, for they will be comforted. God blesses those who are humble, for they will inherit the whole earth. God blesses those who hunger and thirst for justice, for they will be satisfied. God blesses those who are merciful, for they will be shown mercy. God blesses those whose hearts are pure, for they will see God. God blesses those who work for peace, for they will be called the children of God. God blesses those who are persecuted for doing right, for the Kingdom of Heaven is theirs.

“God blesses you when people mock you and persecute you and lie about you and say all sorts of evil things against you because you are my followers.  Be happy about it! Be very glad! For a great reward awaits you in heaven. And remember, the ancient prophets were persecuted in the same way.

“You are the salt of the earth. But what good is salt if it has lost its flavor? Can you make it salty again? It will be thrown out and trampled underfoot as worthless.

“You are the light of the world—like a city on a hilltop that cannot be hidden.  No one lights a lamp and then puts it under a basket. Instead, a lamp is placed on a stand, where it gives light to everyone in the house.  In the same way, let your good deeds shine out for all to see, so that everyone will praise your heavenly Father.

“Don’t misunderstand why I have come. I did not come to abolish the law of Moses or the writings of the prophets. No, I came to accomplish their purpose.  I tell you the truth, until heaven and earth disappear, not even the smallest detail of God’s law will disappear until its purpose is achieved.  So if you ignore the least commandment and teach others to do the same, you will be called the least in the Kingdom of Heaven. But anyone who obeys God’s laws and teaches them will be called great in the Kingdom of Heaven.

“But I warn you—unless your righteousness is better than the righteousness of the teachers of religious law and the Pharisees, you will never enter the Kingdom of Heaven!

“You have heard the law that says, ‘Love your neighbor’ and hate your enemy. But I say, love your enemies! Pray for those who persecute you!  In that way, you will be acting as true children of your Father in heaven. For He gives His sunlight to both the evil and the good, and he sends rain on the just and the unjust alike.  If you love only those who love you, what reward is there for that? Even corrupt tax collectors do that much.  If you are kind only to your friends, how are you different from anyone else? Even pagans do that.  But you are to be perfect, even as your Father in heaven is perfect."

Matthew 18:21‭-‬35 NLT

Then Peter came to [Jesus] and asked, “Lord, how often should I forgive someone who sins against me? Seven times?”

“No, not seven times,” Jesus replied, “but seventy times seven!"

“Therefore, the Kingdom of Heaven can be compared to a king who decided to bring his accounts up to date with servants who had borrowed money from him.  In the process, one of his debtors was brought in who owed him millions of dollars.  He couldn’t pay, so his master ordered that he be sold—along with his wife, his children, and everything he owned—to pay the debt.

“But the man fell down before his master and begged him, ‘Please, be patient with me, and I will pay it all.’  Then his master was filled with pity for him, and he released him and forgave his debt.

“But when the man left the king, he went to a fellow servant who owed him a few thousand dollars. He grabbed him by the throat and demanded instant payment.

“His fellow servant fell down before him and begged for a little more time. ‘Be patient with me, and I will pay it,’ he pleaded.  But his creditor wouldn’t wait. He had the man arrested and put in prison until the debt could be paid in full.

“When some of the other servants saw this, they were very upset. They went to the king and told him everything that had happened.  Then the king called in the man he had forgiven and said, ‘You evil servant! I forgave you that tremendous debt because you pleaded with me.  Shouldn’t you have mercy on your fellow servant, just as I had mercy on you?’  Then the angry king sent the man to prison to be tortured until he had paid his entire debt.

“That’s what my heavenly Father will do to you if you refuse to forgive your brothers and sisters from your heart.”

Romans 8:1‭-‬39 NLT

So now there is no condemnation for those who belong to Christ Jesus. And because you belong to Him, the power of the life-giving Spirit has freed you from the power of sin that leads to death. The law of Moses was unable to save us because of the weakness of our sinful nature. So God did what the law could not do. He sent His own Son in a body like the bodies we sinners have. And in that body God declared an end to sin’s control over us by giving his Son as a sacrifice for our sins. He did this so that the just requirement of the law would be fully satisfied for us, who no longer follow our sinful nature but instead follow the Spirit.

Those who are dominated by the sinful nature think about sinful things, but those who are controlled by the Holy Spirit think about things that please the Spirit. So letting your sinful nature control your mind leads to death. But letting the Spirit control your mind leads to life and peace. For the sinful nature is always hostile to God. It never did obey God’s laws, and it never will. That’s why those who are still under the control of their sinful nature can never please God.

But you are not controlled by your sinful nature. You are controlled by the Spirit if you have the Spirit of God living in you. (And remember that those who do not have the Spirit of Christ living in them do not belong to Him at all.) And Christ lives within you, so even though your body will die because of sin, the Spirit gives you life because you have been made right with God. The Spirit of God, who raised Jesus from the dead, lives in you. And just as God raised Christ Jesus from the dead, he will give life to your mortal bodies by this same Spirit living within you.

Therefore, dear brothers and sisters, you have no obligation to do what your sinful nature urges you to do. For if you live by its dictates, you will die. But if through the power of the Spirit you put to death the deeds of your sinful nature, you will live. For all who are led by the Spirit of God are children of God.

So you have not received a spirit that makes you fearful slaves. Instead, you received God’s Spirit when He adopted you as His own children. Now we call him, “Abba, Father.”  For His Spirit joins with our spirit to affirm that we are God’s children. And since we are His children, we are His heirs. In fact, together with Christ we are heirs of God’s glory. But if we are to share His glory, we must also share His suffering.

Yet what we suffer now is nothing compared to the glory He will reveal to us later. For all creation is waiting eagerly for that future day when God will reveal who His children really are. Against its will, all creation was subjected to God’s curse. But with eager hope, the creation looks forward to the day when it will join God’s children in glorious freedom from death and decay. For we know that all creation has been groaning as in the pains of childbirth right up to the present time. And we believers also groan, even though we have the Holy Spirit within us as a foretaste of future glory, for we long for our bodies to be released from sin and suffering. We, too, wait with eager hope for the day when God will give us our full rights as His adopted children, including the new bodies He has promised us. We were given this hope when we were saved. (If we already have something, we don’t need to hope for it. But if we look forward to something we don’t yet have, we must wait patiently and confidently.)

And the Holy Spirit helps us in our weakness. For example, we don’t know what God wants us to pray for. But the Holy Spirit prays for us with groanings that cannot be expressed in words. And the Father who knows all hearts knows what the Spirit is saying, for the Spirit pleads for us believers in harmony with God’s own will. And we know that God causes everything to work together for the good of those who love God and are called according to His purpose for them. For God knew His people in advance, and He chose them to become like His Son, so that His Son would be the firstborn among many brothers and sisters. And having chosen them, He called them to come to Him. And having called them, He gave them right standing with Himself. And having given them right standing, He gave them His glory.

What shall we say about such wonderful things as these? If God is for us, who can ever be against us? Since He did not spare even His own Son but gave Him up for us all, won’t He also give us everything else? Who dares accuse us whom God has chosen for His own? No one—for God Himself has given us right standing with himself. Who then will condemn us? No one—for Christ Jesus died for us and was raised to life for us, and He is sitting in the place of honor at God’s right hand, pleading for us.

Can anything ever separate us from Christ’s love? Does it mean He no longer loves us if we have trouble or calamity, or are persecuted, or hungry, or destitute, or in danger, or threatened with death? (As the Scriptures say, “For your sake we are killed every day; we are being slaughtered like sheep.”) No, despite all these things, overwhelming victory is ours through Christ, who loved us.

And I am convinced that nothing can ever separate us from God’s love. Neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither our fears for today nor our worries about tomorrow—not even the powers of hell can separate us from God’s love. No power in the sky above or in the earth below—indeed, nothing in all creation will ever be able to separate us from the love of God that is revealed in Christ Jesus our Lord.

Lc (not verified) says...

Good evening, 

Yes, I get that my story about Joseph alot because I went through everything he went through (Had both children removed from my custody, my son 13 years ago (His is 19 y/o now and recently lost custody of my daughter 13 y/o to her father, last year), was falsely imprisoned last year by my daughter's father and she witnessed me going to prison at 11 y/o in the courtroom where she never should have been due to her father's false testimony, his unethical attorney, the bias leaning and abuse of power by a female judge.  Similar story about my son's father doing the same thing in Michigan (where my son was born) but fortunately was not imprisoned  just had to relocate back to my hometown of Memphis but I never recovered financially or custody of my son and a major incident involving my son's sexual abuse in Michigan (daycare owner's teenage son abused all the daycare children) while in his father's custody came to light years later but by living in MS, law enforcement and the courts sided with the father (who is white) and ignored my testimony and concern  and failed not just justice for my son in his case down here but also in the custody case of my daughter  (her dad is black and from MS)  and me.  Don't want to spoil the ending to a great book, lol! 

It is a complicated situation. Catch-22 all around but I do remember Joseph didn't just forgive right off the bat, he did give them tests to see if they were going to throw another brother under the bus, if I recall.  Can't trust relatives or people that are not going to be faithful, loyal or supportive, and I value loyalty when it comes to family and friends. Disloyalty is forbidden.  I learned that the HARD WAY!  I learned from the Lord, that forgiveness and trust are two different things.  I know my relatives very well and have to keep my spirit and loved ones spirits, souls, and bodies safe from toxicity.  I began that process awhile back and as the Lord had begun to heal me in those areas, I have to know that God already knew what He was going to do with my life and how He was going to straighten it out. Not the way I wanted but to get the result He desires.  Painfully but efficiently and strategically like "and we know that He works all things together for the good ....."   My story borders on Joseph, Job, Moses, and Abraham (in that order).  I believe in a good report. Thank you for responding back it is good to have others to care to do that. You are special sister. I will definately keep in touch with YOU!

 

 

Love, 

LaMesa 

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