Posted in Change, Confidence, Giving, God, Love, Perseverance, Prayer, Progress, Relationships, Sharing, society, Success, Trust, Truth

Spread love

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There is something that this world needs more than anything and that is love.

There is not enough love being spread throughout our world.  Clearly we are too angry, sad, bitter, envious and covetous to allow love to even come out. The bible tells us that love never fails, but instead of failing it hopes all things; endures all things; and believes all things. Now that’s an interesting combination!

To hope in something is not merely a wish, but it’s a great expectation that something will be a reality. So, if someone fails you, you could demonstrate love toward them that would make them successful. The hope then is not based on their ability to perform, but your ability to unconditionally love.

Love also endures and this endurance gets stronger as time goes on, not wary. This endurance imitates God’s long suffering towards us. Therefore, love not only powers the victory, but it grants patience to those on the sidelines so that they may bear it.
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Then, finally, love believes all things. Our failure or final attempt is always the result of disbelief. What makes a person not try again? You guessed it, disbelief! Love always says — try again because victory is coming! Love believes that any situation can be turned around. Love believes victory is always an option.

So my friend, as the song by Take 6 says, “spread love instead of telling lies. Spread love because the truth needs no disguise.”

Posted in Confidence, Faith, God, Happiness, Jesus Christ, Prayer, Relationships, The Family

Yes, no and not now (Part 3 of 3)

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So you want your prayers to be in step with the will of God do you? I don’t blame you, too often we ask God as a last resort and we’re still struggling with what things we should pray for.

Remember, prayer is designed to be a comfort to us. It’s like being able to talk to the king of the land and having favor with him. It’s a privilege to be in a covenant relationship where he has requested that when you’re going through rough times you talk to him about it.

Prayer is not a wishing well or a Jeanie in a bottle. It is not a set up where if God likes you, he will give you what you ask. Prayer is not a way to gain material things that we want and it is vain to pray for things God has already granted.

For example, for you to pray to God because some poor person needs food and you already have a house full of food is vain. God doesn’t expect you to rid the world of hunger. He just expects you to take care of the situations you know about. I have a family and let’s say I lose my job. God knows what I need before I ask. Well in a covenant relationship, I need to thank him for the job I know he has purposed for me. Why? Because the Bible says if a man does not work, he doesn’t eat. And a man that doesn’t take care of his family is less than an infidel. So, I can be assured that God has prepared a way for me to take care of the family he gave me so no panicking! Just simply be relentless in search of that job because faith tells you it’s there.

When someone is deathly ill and we pray for them, our prayer should be one that is honest, vulnerable and direct. There is no way to know if it is time for the sick person to die. All we know is that death is common to man and therefore all must die. My prayer would be to let God know how I feel and then let him know that I trust his decision and that he knows best. There is nothing wrong with asking God to heal someone, what makes it bad is when God has revealed his will and we don’t accept it.

God is still GOD when things turn bad, when death visits our house and when we are at our lowest point. He still works things out for our betterment. If we really understand this, then all of our prayers will be of faith. And remember faith comes by hearing, and hearing by the word of God.

Posted in Confidence, Faith, God, Jesus Christ, Prayer, Relationships, Trust

Yes, no and not now (Part 2 of 3)

Will_Of_GodFather knows best was the title of a popular sitcom during the early stages of television and in that program (which was before my time) attempted to show real life family problems that daddy was able to solve. Well, this second edition ponders the question of who knows more — God or us? You would think that the answer to this question would be easy. In word it is, but in deed it is contradictory.

Everyone would say that God knows more than they do. No one sane would ever challenge God to a knowledge contest. We would argue another person down regarding how awesome our God is. We would not allow anyone to degrade our God, we would be offended if someone mocked our God and we definitely don’t want anyone to discredit the existence of our God. Yet, all on our own, we will second guess where God is in a crisis. We tend to allow doubt to enter into our minds when trouble comes. We still believe that we have some significant contribution to whatever is going on. We have a horrible sense of importance, meaning we value our own opinions sometimes more than God’s truth.

Psalm 50:12 records God saying, “If I were hungry, I would not tell thee: for the world is mine, and the fullness thereof.” This scripture makes me laugh because we are so out of the loop when it comes to God. We only know what he allows us to know. Scientist only discover what God decides they can discover. I wouldn’t know what kind of food to give God and I really wouldn’t know how to get it to him. I am helpless. I can’t even save myself.

How many more things does God have to do for us to prove he is God? What else is needed to convince our minds to trust him? Why are we still making God prove himself? Our prayers should be prayers of faith. We should be praying to God understanding who we are praying to and what we are praying for. James wrote that we have not because we ask not. Then he said when we ask, we ask amiss. We must pray God’s will. But how do we know God’s will you ask? I will discuss this next week.

Posted in Change, Confidence, Faith, God, Happiness, Jesus Christ, Love, Obey, Prayer, Trust

Yes, no or not now (Part 1 of 3)

Trust-God1Have you ever wondered how God decides to answer prayer? It is difficult for us to understand how God would respond to us as we know it is written that God’s ways are not our ways and his thoughts are not our thoughts. But certainly we can understand what God’s word has to say about prayer to the almighty and understanding that God is sovereign.

Sovereign speaks of God’s supremacy, his kingship and his Godhead. To say he is sovereign is to declare his majesty and that he is the Most High. His sovereignty states that he is exactly what Paul called him in 1 Tim. 6:15 — that he is the only Potentate, the King of kings and the Lord of lords. So God has the power then to decide to answer our prayers, deny them or delay them. And we trust him to do such…or we should.

To pray to God is to trust God. To make your request known to him is to acknowledge him as the giver of all things and believe that he will respond in the best interest of his children. Our problem is deciding whether God is saying yes, no or not now to us. The first step in understanding this process is to know you are praying in God’s will. You can only know God’s will by studying his word. God’s word tells me that his intervention is greatly needed in this world. It let’s me know that God’s will is far better than the will of man and that salvation belongs only to the one who gave it. So TRUST is the first ingredient in understanding God’s answer.

There is a familiar gospel song entitled Trust and Obey which was written by John H. Sammis who was a Presbyterian minister. It says, “When we walk with the Lord in the light of His Word,  What a glory He sheds on our way! While we do His good will, He abides with us still, And with all who will trust and obey. Trust and Obey for there’s no other way to be happy in Jesus, but to trust and obey.”

Are you willing dear reader to trust God and allow His will to be done? Next week we will discuss the silence of God when it comes to answering our prayers.

Posted in Change, Faith, Forgiveness, Giving, God, Happiness, helping, Jesus Christ, Justice, Life, Love, Prayer, Sharing, society, Truth, Voting

But God,

Attention everyone!

This is a break from the election junk. Please remember to vote Nov. 6 for whoever you support because it is your right.

I was explaining to a group of kids this past week about my selection for president. Now before you think that I’m getting ready to give you my personal views on the candidates don’t worry. That’s not what I told the kids and it’s not what I’m going to waste your time on either.

What I told them was about two of my favorite words in scripture and when these two words come together, look out! The two words I’m referring to are “But” and “God”. If my life were a manuscript, after every calamity it would read “but God.” After every screw up, every sin, every problem, every worry and every confession, I have been able to say “but God.”

I’m very proud of this fact. I have personally experienced the unmerited favor of the Lord. Every time I read Ephesians 2:3-6 I get goose pimples because it is very personal to me. Paul writes: “Among whom also we all had our conversation in times past in the lust of our flesh and of the mind; and were by nature the children of wrath, even as others. BUT GOD, who is rich in mercy, for his great love wherewith he loved us, even when we were dead in sins, hath quickened us together with Christ, (by grace ye are saved;).”

It’s not enough to simply know that we are sinners. It’s really the idea that we could experience such great love and not have earned it. It’s really that we have been granted peace, given grace and experience mercy. The level of forgiveness is not of this world and for this, all God wants us to do is trust and obey.

It is this fact that makes me not a candidate for judging others. I am not a candidate eligible to sit on the same level as God and condemn anyone. BUT GOD did invite me to love, forgive, help, comfort, educate and nurture all of mankind. It’s the privilege I have as a child of the King. I have to always remember who is in control — and it ain’t ever been me. I’m glad that God sits high and looks low and shows favor to his children.

No matter what happens on Nov. 6, I will be content where I am because God is in charge and I am eternally grateful for that. So when things go wrong and situations get out of hand, I hope like me you can smile and say, “But God.”

Posted in Forgiveness, Giving, God, God's Promises, Jesus Christ, Love, Prayer, Relationships, Truth

The truth about forgiveness

Friends,

How often have you heard that we are supposed to forgive and forget? This has even been attributed as a biblical principle – the only problem is that God never told us to forgive AND forget.

Consider this: We are VERY human and in our carnal state it is not remembering the sin that is wrong, it’s how we remember it.

If I am remembering someone else’s trespass against me for the purposes of fueling my hatred toward them, then God’s going to have a problem with that.

If I am remembering the trespass as a reminder of how human we all really are and to fuel my compassion toward humanity, then God will be pleased.

You see, we can’t expect God to forgive us if we are unwilling to forgive others — was this not the Lord’s prayer?

Not to mention that Jesus also said that if we didn’t forgive genuinely (from the heart) our brother his trespasses, then God would not forgive us (Matt.18:35).

The issue I like to focus on is how much more the world will get to understand our God by the way we forgive. Any fool can seek revenge, but it takes a child of God to love their enemies, have compassion for those who persecute and give grace to evildoers.

You don’t forgive people because they ask for it or because they deserve it. You forgive my friend because you have been forgiven.

Selah

Posted in Accountability, Achievement, Change, Diet, Faith, Giving, God, Happiness, Health, Life, Love, Prayer, Progress, Relationships, Sharing, Taking Responsibility, Time

Another year

It seems that the older we get, the faster the years go by.

We were just ushering in 2011 and now it’s over. The end of the year becomes a time where we are able to reflect on the things that happened and make changes if needed.

It’s a time where we should be deciding to end bad relationships because the year has revealed to us that there is no benefit in them.

It’s time to take control over the things that this year has shown us are out of control.

It’s time to rededicate our lives to the people who matter the most to us.

It’s time to talk to God about purpose, plan and repentance.

It’s time for us to make sure that we don’t miss out on the real important things in life because we’re too busy chasing the superficial things.

Don’t let 2012 come and go without you experiencing the things that matter most. Make sure you seize every moment to love someone, admire things God created like sunsets and rainbows and mentor someone that needs you — what God has hidden in these types of relationships make life worth living.

And finally, do the best you can to eliminate stress, the Western culture diet and revenge out of your life. All three of these things can kill you.

Lord thank you for allowing us to see another year. Grant us the courage to make the most of it and honor and glorify your name in it.Amen!

Happy New Year my friends!