Monday, August 31, 2015

It is not dead! It just needs to be recharged!

“Are you tired? Worn out? Burned out on religion? Come to me. Get away with me and you’ll recover your life. I’ll show you how to take a real rest. Walk with me and work with me—watch how I do it. Learn the unforced rhythms of grace. I won’t lay anything heavy or ill-fitting on you. Keep company with me and you’ll learn to live freely and lightly.”(Matthew 11:28-30MSG)

Yesterday as I was getting ready for church, my Fitbit Surge watch died. Now, let me give you a little back story on my FitBit. My FitBit tracks my steps, miles, heart rate, sleep quality, weight loss, and other things I am sure I am leaving out. As you see my FitBit gives me a picture of what my day looks like, from while I'm sleeping all the way throughout my day. Well, about a week before my FitBit died there was a red indicator light that popped up on the face of my watch. I called customer service and they had me take a picture and send it. They also walked me through some trouble shooting solutions. None of those solutions worked and the red dot was still on the face of my watch. I noticed that this red dot made my FitBit battery drain really quickly. I was constantly having to take it off and connect it to the power source and wait before I could use it. So when I woke up Sunday morning and looked down at the face of my watch and it was off I just knew that it had officially died!

Now, I want you to really see the similarities between my FitBit and our relationship with God. See, many times we get the indicators that we are weary. Indicators that we need to get connected to the power source. Indicators that are red lights in life that are directing us to make contact with the manufacture. When the indicator light came on, the first person that I wanted to get in contact with was someone on the line from FitBit. I knew that they would be able to help me with whatever problem I had. Why do we not do the same when it comes to seeking God? When things happen in our lives and we see red lights, the first person we should call upon is the sovereign Lord.

Matthew 11:28-30 reminds us that no matter who we are we will get weary! Regardless of a title, or a position, or education we will each get weary! We will each become burned out if we are not connected to the power source. See, earlier I listed all of the things that my FitBit did. I want you to think about all of the things that you do. I want you to picture all of the hats that you wear. I want to focus on all of the functions that you preform from day to day. Now, I want you to use your sanctified imagination and picture how much easier it would be if you had God being the source! How much lighter the load would be if you gave the load to God and you in return received the yoke of the Lord. For we are reminded that His yoke is easy and His burden is light.

I want to leave you with this thought to reflect upon. My FitBit was not dead. My FitBit just was so drained that it had completely shut off. This has never happened before where it completely turned off. I automatically just assumed that it was finally dead and I could no longer use it. Don't we do the same thing in our walk with Christ? We become so tired and weary that we believe we can no longer be used by God. I want to remind you on today that you are not dead! Your dream is not dead! Your vision is not dead! Each of these thing simply need to be recharged! Go to the Father today and ask Him to recharge you in a way that only He can. The word of God says that we are to learn the unforced rhythms of grace! Be encouraged today and know that God won't lay anything heave or ill-fitting on you! When we walk upright with Him, we learn to live freely and lightly! Today, is the day to lay aside every weight that is hindering you from being all that God has called you to be. Today, is the day that you will decide to allow God to breathe on you! Today, is the day that you will be reminded that you are not dead! You simply need to be recharged!

Let me pray with you today: Father God, I thank you for each and every person that took the time to read this blog. Father, I know it was not by chance or coincidence. I thank you for the divine appointment. I thank you for stirring a desire to be connected to you in ways that they have been disconnected! Father, I thank you for the new thing that you are doing. The new thing that will require us to be even more connected than ever before. Father, I thank you for your grace and for your mercy that continue to infuse us with everything we need to stay the course and run the race you have set before us! Father, I thank you for the people that you are raising up to not just be God chasers, but they will be God catchers! Thank you for your promises and for continuing to say yes and amen! In the mighty name of Jesus, Amen!

**If you do not know Jesus Christ as your personal Savior and would like to accept Him into your heart on today, please allow me to pray with you on today. Father, God I thank you for drawing your children to you. I thank you that as they repent and confess with their hearts and profess with their mouths that you are Lord that you will come into their hearts and rein forever more. I thank you for I know the Angels in Heaven are rejoicing over the decision that was made today to accept you and receive eternal life. Lead, guide, and direct oh God like only you can. In the mighty name of Jesus, amen!

Wednesday, January 28, 2015

What is that smell?

"In the Messiah, in Christ, God leads us from place to place in one perpetual victory parade. Through us, he brings knowledge of Christ. Everywhere we go, people breathe in the exquisite fragrance. Because of Christ, we give off a sweet scent rising to God, which is recognized by those on the way of salvation—an aroma redolent with life. But those on the way to destruction treat us more like the stench from a rotting corpse."(2Corinthians 2:14-16MSG)

Have you ever been somewhere and you immediately wanted to know what the smell was that you were inhaling in your nostrils? It could have been an amazing smell that you could not get enough of. On the other hand, the smell could have been horrible and made you want to stop breathing all together! Think back to those times. Take a moment and reflect on the emotions you felt when you breathed in those smells both good and bad. Now, ask yourself what scent do you leave behind? When people are around you, what aroma are you sending out? Would you want to breathe in what you put out? 

As I was reflecting on the above passage of scripture, I began to think about all the times that I have fried chicken. When you fry chicken or are even in the house of someone who is frying chicken, you will not be able to escape without smelling guessed it. Fried Chicken! The same is true with our relationship with Christ. There is no way that we are able to be in His presence and not walk away giving off a sweet aroma! 2 Corinthians 2:14-16 declares that everywhere we go, people breathe in the exquisite fragrance. Why you ask or better yet how? The passage of scripture goes on to answer that very question of how. Because of Christ, we give off a sweet scent rising to God! How amazing is that? The passage of scripture does not stop there. Here is the remainder of that sentence, Which is recognized by those on the way to salvation-an aroma redolent with life! Now, the last sentence stood out to me too. But those on the way to destruction treat us more like the stench from a rotting corpse. I started thinking about the smell of fried chicken. Not everybody likes the smell of fried chicken and you know what? Not everybody is going to like the sweet aroma that you are sending off either. Why? Because they are on their way to destruction. But let's go back to the beginning of 2Corinthians 2. The passage of scripture starts off by declaring that in the Messiah, in Christ, God leads us from place to place in perpetual victory parade.Through us, he brings knowledge of Christ.

Let's be conscious of what aroma we are sending out. There is absolutely no way that we can enter into God's presence and remain the same. Let me encourage you today, my friend, you are to be a spiritual change agent. Regardless of where you go, shift the atmosphere by your presence. Your very presence is enough to create a change in the environment.  Let everywhere you go people ask, what is that smell?

Let me pray with you today. Father God, I come before you in the mighty name of Jesus. Oh, God I thank you for each person that took the time to read this blog. I thank you that the word of God will be so etched on their hearts that they will not sin against it. I thank you  Father God for what you are doing in their lives even right now. I thank you for stirring up the gifts that you have placed on the inside of them. Father God, I ask in the mighty name of Jesus that you would continue to strengthen them for the journey that you have them on. Oh, mighty God I ask that the aroma that goes up from our lives would be pleasing unto you. Never let us leave your presence the same! I thank you for your sons and daughters. In the mighty name of Jesus, amen! 

Monday, August 25, 2014

Don't be fooled by what you currently see!

"After that, the Word of God came to me: “Zerubbabel started rebuilding this Temple and he will complete it. That will be your confirmation that God-of-the-Angel-Armies sent me to you. Does anyone dare despise this day of small beginnings? They’ll change their tune when they see Zerubbabel setting the last stone in place!” Going back to the vision, the Messenger-Angel said, “The seven lamps are the eyes of God probing the dark corners of the world like searchlights.”~Zechariah4:8-10(MSG)

Today I dropped my daughter off for her first day of first grade. As we sat there, I looked around. My baby girl is 6 and is in a multi-age classroom. That means that there are both first and second graders in one classroom. Even though she is not the oldest child in the classroom, she is the tallest child in the classroom. It made me think back to when I was a child. I hit my growth spurt sooner than a lot of my classmates. So, if you seen me you would have thought I was going to be tall. Well, that was not the case. See, I hit my growth spurt early but I stopped growing when others kept on growing. That is what happens a lot of times doesn't it? You can look around and it looks like everyone else is so much farther along than you. They can look so much bigger than you through your eyes. My friend, don't get discouraged or fooled by what you currently see! God is not through with you! Others may seem bigger but be encouraged because God is still stretching and growing you!

It is easy to look at others and compare ourselves to them. Comparison is one of the quickest robbers of joy! Don't you know that when we compare ourselves to our brothers and sisters in Christ we lose focus of our strengths? It is easy to see only your weaknesses when you look at someone else's strengths. Instead of comparing yourself to others, rejoice when you see God's anointing upon others. Pray for them. Encourage them. You do not know what seeds were sown and watered in there life for God to bring forth the increase of strength that you see. One thing you can be rest assured of is the fact that seeds were sown. If you know anything about a seed, you know that different seeds grow at different rates. Not only do different seeds grow at different rates but the ground the seed is sown in determines how well that seed will grow. Lets make sure we are good ground so that we can grow as God desires for us to grow us.

I want to leave you with some encouragement on today. Rest on this word. You, my friend, are unique and you are beautiful. You are God's handy work. Never allow yourself to feel smaller than you are. "I will confess and praise You for You are fearful and wonderful and for the awful wonder of my birth! Wonderful are Your works, and that my inner self knows right well."~Psalm139:14(AMP) I love that God, asked the question in Zechariah does any dare despise this day of small beginnings. Never allow yourself to despise where you are in God. God is yet working in and through you. Perfecting everything He started in you.

Let me pray with you on today. Father God, I come before you right now in the mighty name of Jesus. Father, I thank you for each person that took the time to read this blog. I pray that it encouraged them and drew them closer to you. Oh God, you declare in your word that when we draw close to you that you will draw close to us. We thank you of that drawing on today. Father, I ask that you would open their eyes so that they would see themselves through the eyes of Christ. Allow them to see who they are in your eyes. I bind the spirit of fear right now in the name of Jesus. I speak what your word declares for you have not given us the spirit of fear, but of power and of love and of a sound mind. Have your way in the lives of your people! Remove any hindrance or weight in the name of Jesus! We count it as done and we give you the highest praise due to your holy name in the matchless name of Jesus, amen!

If you do not know Jesus as your personal savior and would like to receive the greatest gift you will ever receive, the gift of salvation join me in prayer on today. Father, I confess that I have sinned against you. I believe in my heart and confess with my mouth that you are Lord. I believe that Jesus died on the cross for me and rose from the dead to sit on the right hand of God the Father. Enter into my heart today to live forever more. I give you access to every part of me. Thank you, Jesus for saving me on this day! In Jesus name, Amen!

Friday, August 15, 2014

You are too strong to be weak!

"The Lord is my Strength and my [impenetrable] Shield; my heart trusts in, relies on, and confidently leans on Him, and I am helped; therefore my heart greatly rejoices, and with my song will I praise Him."~Psalm28:7(AMP)

I was laughing, joking and play fighting with my oldest son when I told him, you are too strong to be weak. See, my eleven year old son is almost as tall as me and weighs ninety four pounds. He does not realize his strength. He does not realize how big he is. As soon as the words came out of my mouth, I got excited! Think about it. Let it marinate. Many of us do not realize our own strength. We don't realize just where our strength comes from. The world would have us think it is from our size, but don't you know our strength comes from our God! Psalm28:7 reminds us that the Lord is our shield not only our shield but a impenetrable shield. That means absolutely nothing will be able to get past that shield. Now, that is the very definition of strong. When we know that we know that we know that God is our strength, we are able to walk out and live the remainder of Psalm28:7.  Our hearts trust in, rely on, and confidently lean on Him! We know that we are helped and our heart greatly rejoices and with our song will we praise God! Now, that right there is a promise to stand on.

As I began to think about the reasons that we forget just how strong we are and become paralyzed and weak, the first thing that came to my mind was we think we have to be in the fight all by ourselves. We forget that it is a "fixed" fight! "The Lord himself will fight for you. Just stay calm."~Exodus14:14(NLT) Don't you know that the Lord Himself will fight for you. Sometimes we have to remind ourselves to stand on Exodus 14:13. We have to stand still and see the salvation of the Lord. The next time a situation tries to remind you of your weakness remind your situation who is perfected in your weakness! "But he said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may rest on me."~2Corinthians12:9(NIV) The next time fear and doubt come knocking and throwing up your weaknesses boast in them and let God's strength be perfected! God's grace is more than sufficient for every battle and storm you will face.

Never allow the size of your giant that you are up against cause you to forget the size of your God! "But you belong to God, my dear children. You have already won a victory over those people, because the Spirit who lives in you is greater than the spirit who lives in the world." If that promise of God is not enough then lean on the strength that comes from this scripture:  "I have strength for all things in Christ Who empowers me [I am ready for anything and equal to anything through Him Who [a]infuses inner strength into me; I am [b]self-sufficient in Christ’s sufficiency]."~Philippians4:13(AMP) Our feelings change, our circumstances change, but the word of God remains the same. If you are having trouble seeing your strength, allow God to light up the path for you to see! You my friend, are too strong to be weak another day of your life! Embrace your strength on today.

I would love to pray with you on today. Father God, I thank you for each and every person that took the time to read this blog on today. I pray that it met them right where they were at and caused them to be reminded of how strong they are in you. Father, I thank you for perfecting your strength in them through their weaknesses. Oh God, I thank you that we can run to you in our times of not just trouble but of victory! How great it is to be able to come before the throne of grace and marvel at your majesty. Father, on today I pray that what ever battle my brother or sister is facing that you remind them that you are not only their guide but their guard! That not weapon that is formed against them will prosper and that every lying tongue will be condemned! Have your way God. Move by your spirit right now and cause every crooked place to be made straight for your glory! In the mighty and matchless name of Jesus Christ, Amen!

If you do not know Jesus Christ as your personal savior, I would love to pray with you on today to accept the greatest gift of all. The gift of eternal life. Repeat after me if you would desire to accept Him as Lord of your life. Father God, I  believe in my heart and confess with my mouth that Jesus is Lord. I ask that you would come in to my heart and reign forever more. I believe that you died for my sins on the cross and that you rose from the dead and sit at the right hand of God. I repent of all past sins. I give you my life this day forever more. In Jesus name, Amen!

Sunday, August 10, 2014

Uncomfortable because of growing pains!

"I consider that our present sufferings are not worth comparing with the glory that will be revealed in us."(Romans8:18NIV)

As I was in my bed last night trying to drift away to sleep, I began to think about the pain that is associated with growth. The very reason many of us are uncomfortable is because God is enlarging us  and we no longer fit in the same position that we once fit in. I don't know about you, but i have tried to fit into something that was too small. Let me tell you if you have never done this, it is beyond uncomfortable. It does not matter the length of time you try to keep what does not fit on, keeping it on will cause discomfort. That is what is happening right now in many of our lives. We are experiencing growing pains. We can no longer fit where we once could fit comfortably! God is enlarging your faith. God is enlarging your hope. God is enlarging your joy. God is enlarging your peace. God is enlarging your worship. God is enlarging your praise.  I want to encourage you that the pain is only temporary and the growth that is being produced in you will amaze you. Your present suffering is not even worth comparing for the glory that will be revealed in you!

When I think about growing pains, I think of my children. Each of them are in different stages of life and with each stage there comes a different set of growing pains. The exciting thing about growing pains is that with it comes growth. My oldest son is eleven and almost as tall as me. When I look at him I still see my baby boy that I held in my arms and rocked to sleep. As I prepare for him to soon be going to middle school, I watch in amazement.  The growth that he has experienced this summer has been awesome. The biggest change I see in him is his appetite. He is hungry all of the time now! What would once satisfy him is no longer enough. Let me let you in on a little secret. As you begin to grow, your appetite for the word will change. Your appetite will not only change but milk will no longer satisfy you. "For everyone who continues to feed on milk is obviously inexperienced and unskilled in the doctrine of righteousness (of conformity to the divine will in purpose, thought, and action), for he is a mere infant [not able to talk yet]!
14 But solid food is for full-grown men, for those whose senses and mental faculties are trained by practice to discriminate and distinguish between what is morally good and noble and what is evil and contrary either to divine or human law."(Hebrews5:13-14AMP)  

I just wanted to encourage you to get excited about what God is doing in your life. Move from being unsure of what He was doing to rejoicing in what He is doing! Move from concentrating on the pain to rejoicing about His glory being revealed in you! Move from fitting in to standing out for His glory! You were not created to fit in."But you are the ones chosen by God, chosen for the high calling of priestly work, chosen to be a holy people, God’s instruments to do his work and speak out for him, to tell others of the night-and-day difference he made for you—from nothing to something, from rejected to accepted."(1Peter2:9MSG)

Let me pray with you today. Father God, I come before you thanking you for each person that took the time to read this blog. I ask God that you would meet them right where they are and fill whatever need they are standing with on today. Father, I thank you for the ability to come to you in prayer. I thank you that when we come before your throne of grace we leave differently than when we entered in. Oh, God I thank you for the work you are perfecting even now and that even though we will have times of growing pains and of being uncomfortable we know that the glory that will be revealed in us will be incomparable! Father, I pray for those who may not know you as their savor and the pardoner of their sins. If you don't know Jesus as Lord and Savior, won't you accept the greatest gift you have ever received? The gift of eternal life. The gift of a Savior. Join in this prayer. Father God, I believe in my heart and confess with my mouth that Jesus is Lord. That Jesus Christ died for my sins! That Jesus Christ rose from the dead and sits at the right hand of the father and I ask Him into my heart to reign forever more. In Jesus name, AMEN!

Thursday, June 5, 2014

Look in the mirror and stop looking out the window.

7 1-5 “Don’t pick on people, jump on their failures, criticize their faults— unless, of course, you want the same treatment. That critical spirit has a way of boomeranging. It’s easy to see a smudge on your neighbor’s face and be oblivious to the ugly sneer on your own. Do you have the nerve to say, ‘Let me wash your face for you,’ when your own face is distorted by contempt? It’s this whole traveling road-show mentality all over again, playing a holier-than-thou part instead of just living your part. Wipe that ugly sneer off your own face, and you might be fit to offer a washcloth to your neighbor."~Matthew 7:5(MSG)

It is always easier to look out of the window and see what is on our sister and brother's face then it is for us to look in the mirror and see what is on ours. The verse above goes as far to state that we will have the nerve to say, let me wash your face for you, when our own face is distorted by contempt. Let us get to a place in Christ where we are eager to get before Him and have Him search us and cleanse and purify us. When we are clean ourselves we will bear the fruit and not just talk about the seeds. It is time to be about our father's business through not just our words but our deeds. Our very actions are what display our fruit not how shiny we may look on the outside. How many of you know that an artificial piece of fruit can be one of the prettiest pieces of fruit you can find, but baby you will not be able to get any nutrients from that artificial fruit. The same is true with many of us we may very well be the prettiest or most handsome thing in the room but our vessels are empty and not empty in a good way. We are of no good to our Daddy because we do not have any of His fruit. This is what the scripture has to say about this type of person: “You’re hopeless, you religion scholars and Pharisees! Frauds! You’re like manicured grave plots, grass clipped and the flowers bright, but six feet down it’s all rotting bones and worm-eaten flesh. People look at you and think you’re saints, but beneath the skin you’re total frauds.~Matthew23:27-28

We each should strive to walk in holiness. For holiness is still the standard. It is the standard when we feel like it and it is still the standard when we don't. Holiness has nothing to do with feelings at all.When we walk in holiness we will not be so focused on pointing out everyone else's sins. But instead we point them to the king of kings. We will be offering a healing balm from on high. We serve a holy God. In our holiness and humility there is a healing that takes place. It is in our humility that we admit that we ourselves do not have it all together but we know the one who is able to cleanse us and purify us for His use. "If we claim that we’re free of sin, we’re only fooling ourselves. A claim like that is errant nonsense. On the other hand, if we admit our sins—make a clean breast of them—he won’t let us down; he’ll be true to himself. He’ll forgive our sins and purge us of all wrongdoing. If we claim that we’ve never sinned, we out-and-out contradict God—make a liar out of him. A claim like that only shows off our ignorance of God."~1John1:8-10

Let me pray with you today. Lord, I come before you with a humble heart asking that you would let us be vessels of your glory instead of trying to be mirrors for others. Father God, search us on today and cleanse and purify not only our minds and our hearts but our motives as well. Let us not be so quick to point out the sins of others but to be quick to offer a helping hand. Let our fruit display a close walk with you. Father, I ask that the Holy Ghost would come in and have its way in our hearts. Create in us clean hearts and renew a right spirit within us. Let nothing we do be for selfish gain. In the name of Jesus, Amen. If you do not know the Lord Jesus Christ as your personal savior, won't you make the best decision of your life today and accept Him to be Lord of your life?

Sunday, May 11, 2014

Out with the old and in with the new!

Have you ever bought a new outfit but were not able to wear it because you had no shoes to match? I am guilty of doing that. I was so excited about my new outfit and just knew that I had something in my closet to go with it. Only to return home to search and find nothing to match my new outfit. It is not a good feeling to be excited about wearing that outfit but not being able to because you don't have any shoes! The same is true with our walk with Christ. Many of us are looking mix matched. We are trying to put our new beautiful garments over our old dirty garments. It will not work. For in doing so we are ruining the new!  “Besides, who would patch old clothing with new cloth? For the new patch would shrink and rip away from the old cloth, leaving an even bigger tear than before."~Matthew 9:16(NLT) It is time to get rid of the old in order to embrace the new. The word of God tells us that old things are passed away. "Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new."~2Corinthians5:17(KJV) Out with old and in with the new.

Another way to look at out with the old and in with the new is to look at how we view pouring new wine in old wine bottles. Does this make since to you? Would you do that? Do you know in doing so you not only waste the new wine but break the wine bottle? “And no one puts new wine into old wineskins. For the new wine would burst the wineskins, spilling the wine and ruining the skins."~Luke 5:37(NLT) We do this in our every day life when we start a day with out asking God to empty us. We enter the day full of heaviness from the day before. We need to start empty so that it is God who is filling us with His new mercy. God's mercy is new everyday. "Great is his faithfulness; his mercies begin afresh each morning."~Lamentations 3:23 Let's remind our selves each morning to ask God to empty us. Out with the old and in with the new.

Is there an old pattern of behavior in your life that does not line up with your new identity in Christ? Is this behavior hindering your walk with Christ? Let today be the day you make up your mind to no longer hold on to your past. Let it go. Let old habits go. It is time to walk in the fulness of what God has prepared for you. Let today be the day you say out with the old and in with the new! New mindset and new focus on your purpose. 

I would love to touch and agree with you today with a word of prayer. Father God, I come before you today praying for my brother or sister that took time on today to read this blog and that feels the wooing of your Holy Spirit. I pray that you have shown them what it is in their life that you a desiring for them to put aside. What you are desiring for them to get rid of through your grace and through the authority that you have given us through your son Jesus Christ. Father God we cry out to you today and ask that you would lead us on the path that you have for us. We long to do your will and be emptied daily so we can be filled with your glory! In the mighty name of Jesus we pray and praise you in advance for your work being completed amen! If you do not know Jesus Christ as your savior and you have not accepted Him into you heart and confessed Him as Lord, let today be the day that you receive eternal life.