“It’s Saturday!”

The day before Sunday is like no other. It’s the day that comes at the end of the work week and comes before the day of worship. There are so many possibilities with this day. Sleep in or go out? Veg out in front the TV or seek adventure? Clean or do you say forget it, “I clean every day and today I’m taking a break!” How will you spend your time?

Time. That’s a four little word with great impact. Time is something we can never get back. Time is something that will keep moving forward whether you are ready to go with it or not. Time is precious. Time is valuable. How one spends their time can either add to their life or take away from it.

Time. Extra time is not promised. We can’t buy more time. Rather, we must lay hold of with an iron grip the time that has been allotted to us and make the best use of it for our lives, our families, and our ministries.

Time. What will you do with it? We deserve rest because we worked hard. Take the time. We deserve adventure, something that will heighten our senses because we have stayed the course of the mundane all week. Take the time. Clean? . . . well, we’ll just leave that one alone for now.

Time. As crazy as it seems to us, it goes by in a flash when you don’t want it to and it drags when you wish it would speed up. That’s why every moment counts. Every opportunity should be seized. Every second savored.

Time. We don’t have as much of it as we would like, and yet God blessed us with the amount we need. How we choose to use it is up to us.

What will you do with your time today? There is no right or wrong answer. If you worked hard and want to sit in front of the tv because your brain needs a few hours vacation, then do so. If your body has been stuck in the office all week and you feel a need to stretch and exercise to get it moving, then do so. If you chose to let the house go one day so that you can have time for yourself, then do so. It’s Saturday! It’s your time! Make the most of it for you!

Keep in mind, once this Saturday goes by, it will not come again. Oh, yes, there will be other Saturdays, but not this Saturday. There will be other chances and opportunities, but not like today. Today is for you – it’s your Saturday, what will you do?

Ephesians 5:16 encourages us to redeem the time. Grab hold of today and make the most of it! It’s only here today. So, what will you do with today?

Whatever you do, make today count! It’s Saturday, enjoy “you” on this day!

God bless you and enjoy your Saturday 🙂

Photo credit: Pixabay

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Community of Believers | We are here for one another!

 

Races can take you through many terrains.  Running uphill, it’s hard.  The more you go, the steeper the incline, the harder it gets.  Breath after breath your chest heaves for relief.  Push after push your muscles cry out for mercy.  And, just when you thought you had no more in you; just when you thought you couldn’t go any farther, from behind there comes these hands out of nowhere that steadies your stride and helps propel you forward some more.  On the side of you comes smiling faces with encouraging words grabbing hold of your arms and help pull you up that incline that you might finish your race.  They want to help you make it.

The Apostle Paul often described our Christian life as a race (1 Corinthians 9:24-27).  We run it.  We press for it.  But, sometimes the way gets hard and if it had not been for the grace of God, we would not have made it.

As the community of racers pushed and pulled the struggling runner uphill, so God will minister to us to help us go through our race.  Often this is done through the community of believers that will come alongside the one that needs support.

In this world the struggle is real.  May we, as a community of believers, recognize the support that each one needs.  May we join up with our fellow Christian race runners and offer the help and encouragement they need to make it.  May we see beyond our own race and allow God to use our hands and smiling faces to help bolster someone’s faith as they are striving to make it up the inclines of this life.

We all have the same goal in mind: to finish the race.  We need each other to do it.  As a community of believers, our job goes beyond spreading the gospel and being a light in this dark world, and all the other spiritual stuff it entails.  Our job is also to seek the welfare of one another.  We need to be there for one another.  We need to be present and involved in the process of what they are going through “that there should be no schism in the body; but that the members should have the same care one for another. And whether one member suffer, all the members suffer with it; or one member be honoured, all the members rejoice with it,” (1 Corinthians 12:25-26).  

More encouraging verses and quotes:

“Wherefore comfort yourselves together, and edify one another, even as also ye do.” 1 Thessalonians 5:11

“Bear ye one another’s burdens, and so fulfil the law of Christ.” Galatians 6:2

Two are better than one; because they have a good reward for their labour. For if they fall, the one will lift up his fellow . . .” Ecclesiastes 4:9-10a

“God has chosen us to help one another.” Smith Wigglesworth

“The first question which the priest and the Levite asked was: ‘If I stop to help this man, what will happen to me?’ But… the Good Samaritan reversed the question: ‘If I do not stop to help this man, what will happen to him?'” Martin Luther King, Jr.

Photo Source: Pixabay

Confident in God!

There is always something about the stories where the underdog comes out on top, where the least of all becomes the greatest that sends chills of inspiration up the spine.

The story of David and Goliath has long evoked a sense awe at the victory won and the hope of possibility in the soul still in the fight facing his/her own giants. The fact of the matter is that many things in this life which we face day to day can at times seem too much to bear.  Our worries don’t necessarily have to be against the biggest guy around.  Just the struggle of making it one more day, another try at giving it your best shot, can make it really hard for some people.

That’s why this article is not going to focus on the beast Goliath was or how David brought him down with just a stone and slingshot.

Nope. I want us to focus on the confidence that David had in God.

To me, it doesn’t matter if what you face is big or small. Sometimes the hardest stuff is the routine, small stuff that gets on your nerves every single day and makes you want to throw in the towel and quit.

Yes, David did the impossible in the name of the Lord. But, what I have found out in my own life is when we evoke that same confidence in God in every area of our lives, big or small, God tends to step in and work it out for us.  And, you know it was Him because that very area in life that used to be a source of hardship and frustration now becomes a place of peace and productivity.

David, before confronting Goliath, declared, “The LORD delivered me from the paw of the lion and from the paw of the bear, He will deliver me from the hand of this Philistine,” (1 Samuel 17:37, NKJV. emphasis mine).  I want us to focus on “He will” of that statement.  David expressed in those two little words the amount of confidence he had in the God he served.

Confidence in God the key no matter what. Many of times we misplace our confidences in the things and the people we see around us, allowing them to become our focus and control, when God should be at the forefront of the battle with us.  Over and over again we are told in His Word, “It is better to trust in the LORD than to put confidence in man,” (Psalm 118:8, NKJV); yet, man seems to always get more of our attention and we wonder why we falter in the battle and don’t end up standing as victor over the giants and circumstances we face.

We have to rely more on God than anything else in this world. He truly is the only one who can get in there and fight with us and for us and bring us to a victorious end on the other side.

Below are some reminders to trust God and have confidence in Him no matter the size of anything we face. Knowing this will improve our day to day struggles in life and turn them into day to day victories.

  • “Trust in the LORD with all thine heart; and lean not unto thine own understanding.” – Proverbs 3:5
  • “Trust ye in the LORD for ever: for in the LORD JEHOVAH is everlasting strength.” – Isaiah 26:4
  • “Trust in the LORD, and do good; so shalt thou dwell in the land, and verily thou shalt be fed.” – Psalm 37:3
  • “Ye shall not need to fight in this battle: set yourselves, stand ye still, and see the salvation of the LORD with you, O Judah and Jerusalem: fear not, nor be dismayed; to morrow go out against them: for the LORD will be with you.” – 2 Chronicles 20:17
  • “Never be afraid to trust in unknown future to a known God.” – Corrie Ten Boom
  • “Faith is a living, daring confidence in God’s grace, so sure and certain that a man could stake his life on it a thousand times.” – Martin Luther
  • “So many of us limit our praying because we are not reckless in our confidence in God. In the eyes of those who do not know God, it is madness to trust Him, but when we pray in the Holy Spirit we begin to realize the resources of God, that He is our perfect heavenly Father, and we are His children.” – Oswald Chambers

“It Only Takes a Moment” – Word For Life Says

Photo: Pixabay/silviarita

Have you ever had one of those moments when you realize God is teaching you something significant?  Where every current scene that plays out in your life you spiritually awaken to the idea of God’s guiding presence in a new way; His hand steering you this way and that?

I have had some of those revelatory moments lately.  God is cracking old perceptions I once held of myself and He is pulling me into new areas of trust.  In this area where I am being drawn, I readily admit I don’t know what I am doing.  My human frailty comes to the forefront but God is showing me Him.  He is showing me more of His heart, more of His care, and more of His heavenly abilities to work it all out.

Oh, His ability to do it all has always been there, but there were certain areas of my life where there were still scales on my eyes, shielding me from seeing the bigger picture; from seeing God fully at work in it all.

I was awakened on the inside and became more aware that there is so much more to me than me.  God has me on His radar and He is orchestrating my life in a unique and special way.  No, I don’t have all the answers, nor do I know what tomorrow looks like or how this will all end up, but by faith, I want Him to take the lead while I just step out and follow.

It requires not only a moment of revelation but a life of trust.  Steven Furtick said, “The only way God can show us He is in control is to put us in situations we can’t control,” (Quote Source: Pinterest).

It’s purposely declaring every day and with every step, “I don’t know it all, but I choose to follow the One who does.”  It’s a time when we let that one moment of believing God is the fullness of His promises defines the makeup of our future.  It’s when we permit the wonder of all that He is to overshadow any doubt or discrepancies that we might feel within ourselves, realizing what He has made us for and ordained us to do never depended on us in the first place.

Is there an area of your life where God wants to give you that ah-ha moment of revelation?  Or, are there still scales blocking your full vision of Him?

Father God, remove the scales from our eyes that we might see the full vision of You.  We are praying against every hindrance that tries to blind Your people and obstruct their view from the wonderful works You want to do through them.  Amen!

I pray for your moment of connection with God.  I pray that you would trust in God more, and focus on Him more than whatever you think you can’t do.  It only takes a moment of sincere trust and abandon to Him to change your course in history forever.

“Blessed is the man that trusteth in the LORD, and whose hope the LORD is.” Jeremiah 17:7

“God sees you!”

Text Free Photo: Pixabay/KManzela

If God saw you before you were ever born, then take courage, dear friends, that He sees you today. And, as your days were laid out then, He’s holding your day today.

“Your eyes saw my substance, being yet unformed. And in Your book they all were written, The days fashioned for me, When as yet there were none of them.”
– Psalms‬ ‭139:16‬, NKJV‬‬

Memorial Day: For those who gave the ultimate sacrifice in serving, we salute you.

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“Courage is contagious. When a brave man takes a stand, the spines of others are stiffened.” – Billy Graham

“A hero is someone who has given his or her life to something bigger than oneself.” – Joseph Campbell

“A hero is an ordinary individual who finds the strength to persevere and endure in spite of overwhelming obstacles.” – Christopher Reeve

To you all, the courageously brave with unrelenting service and sacrifice, we say “Thank you.”

“Hurts and Disappointments and Troubles – OH MY!”

Anytime we hear a three-worded phrase followed by a quick, “Oh my,” our minds automatically associate with that old 1939 film The Wizard of Oz.  It’s when Dorothy and her companions are readying themselves to go into the dark, dense forest when their chant of possible woes begin that tell of what may lay ahead and come to prowl.

The Bible tells us there is an enemy that’s on the prowl.  He is described as a “roaring lion, walketh about, seeking whom he may devour,” (1 Peter 5:8).  He is never full and always looks for destruction and he seeks to block the pathway of those trying to reach that glorious city.  And no, we’re not talking about the Emerald one, but that city called heaven.

Hurts, disappointments, and troubles are things we can run into during our sojourn in this life and things the enemy seeks to magnify in our lives.  David likened it to times of walking through the “valley of the shadow of death,” (Psalm 23:4a).  It can be a fearsome place with many traps and travails scattered about the pathway.  But, unlike the fear that took over those venturing into the dark forest, David declared, “I will fear no evil: for thou art with me . . .” (Psalm 23:4b).  For David, it wasn’t about the dark forest and it wasn’t about the valley of the shadow of death.  For him, it was all about Who was with him in the midst of it all.

And, the “Who” that was with him was the same God who declared, “I will never leave you nor forsake you,” (Hebrews 13:5).  The same God who sits high above the earth and His train fills the temple, Isaiah 6:1.  The same God who is ever mighty, ever omnipotent, everlasting, and never failing.

This is the same God who is Jehovah Jireh (Genesis 22:14), our Provider in the time of need.  He is God Most High (Psalm 97:9), always in charge and always reigning sovereignly over all.  He is always above and never beneath.  He is always with and never without.  All dominions and powers must and will bow down to Him.

God is the Creator who spoke the universe with all its cycles, atoms, particles, and life into existence.  With His power to speak anything and everything into being, comes also the strength and authority to heal.  With His ability to fashion the things uncontrollable to men such as the winds and the waves, He can speak, and bring forth peace out of chaos, and make them be still.

You see, when David gave his recitation of the Lord as his Shepherd, he was doing more than putting cute words together.  He was making a bold declaration of faith, choosing to believe in and focus more on He who was with him than all that’s going on around him.

This is the strong key to the faith we need to successfully deal with things that may be hiding in the dark forest or the low valleys of our lives.  Hurts, disappointments, and troubles are something we will all have to face from time to time.

But, oh my!  When they meet the God I know; the God I serve!  The God whom David expressed such bold confidence in!  The God who is indescribable in His holiness and majesty because it goes beyond what we can comprehend; and yet, describable by His characteristics of love, mercy, and grace.  The only God of all heaven and earth . . .  When they meet Him, He can change their roaring course.  He can subdue their evil uprising.  And, He can take over and overwhelm their destructive nature, all the while, surrounding and protecting His people with His love, security, and readiness to stand with them and for them.

While we are on this side of glory we are going to have unpleasant things to face.  But, oh my – when we see Jesus, every trial, trouble, and evil way will dissipate and all that will remain is our God and those who are tied to Him in a covenant relationship through our Lord Jesus Christ.

Until that day, remember, no matter what you are dealing with today, if you are a child of God, you are not alone.  He’s there.  He’s here.  He’s right beside us.  His Spirit dwells in us.  God is walking with us and holding us through every dark forest and every valley of the shadow of death.

Isn’t that wonderful to find out – oh my, you are not alone.  Lean into Him with trust as He walks with you through this journey.

“With this new day I CHOOSE TO RISE!”

Rise up into all God has for you! Rise up in courage and put your best foot forward and take on this day like the champion you are in Him!

“Kites rise highest against the wind – not with it.” – Winston Churchhill

“It’s when ordinary people rise above the expectations and seize the opportunity that milestones truly are reached.” – Mike Huckabee

Yet a little sleep, a little slumber, a little folding of the hands to sleep: So shall thy poverty come as one that travelleth; and thy want as an armed man.” Proverbs 24:33-34

“Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous! Do not tremble or be dismayed, for the LORD your God is with you wherever you go.” – Joshua 1:9, HCSB

“Fear thou not; for I am with thee: be not dismayed; for I am thy God: I will strengthen thee; yea, I will help thee; yea, I will uphold thee with the right hand of my righteousness.” – Isaiah 41:10

“What shall we then say to these things? If God be for us, who can be against us?” – Romans 8:31

“The LORD is on my side; I will not fear: what can man do unto me?” – Psalm 118:6

“So that we may boldly say, The Lord is my helper, and I will not fear what man shall do unto me.” – Hebrews 13:6

“Death and life are in the power of the tongue: and they that love it shall eat the fruit thereof.” – Proverbs 18:21

“With confidence, you have won before you have started.” – Marcus Garvey

 

Words To Live By – “God loved us too much to leave us the way we were!”

“Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new.” 2 Corinthians 5:17

Text Free Photo: Pixabay

Be Progressive!

My Project 292-001

“And the LORD said unto Moses, Wherefore criest thou unto me? speak unto the children of Israel, that they go forward,” Exodus 14:15, KJV

Have you heard of the phrase “two steps forward, one step back?” What if we could erase that end part? What if we could subtract from the equation the minus one step? What would the total sum of one’s life be if all they ever did was progress? If all they ever did was to add without factoring any negatives?

“Two steps forward, one step back.” It’s a phrase that I have used and I know you have, too. But, in reality, I actually think that we get too comfortable with that kind of mentality. Everything is not always going to go off without a hitch, but it’s almost as if we expect to move backward every time we try to advance forward. We are factoring in a negative from the very beginning.

In math, when adding, anytime there is a negative number that is bigger than the positive number it will equal a negative number. A positive number plus a positive number equals a positive, but a positive number plus a bigger negative number will equal a negative. Any time there is doubt in one’s advancement that will almost always sabotage one’s progress, taking away from all that they have done and gone through to move forward. Taking away and overshadowing the positive with that seemingly bigger negative.

Don’t get me wrong. I know that there are many hard trials and circumstances that everyone will face. I will not trivialize the hurt and disappointments that many face. But, what will happen if while we are on this journey, we try our best to look beyond the circumstances that we are in and move forward toward the promise? What if for once we could factor out the negatives of life instead of factoring them in? Despite the chariots and the enemies pursuing us, we could be more determined to pursue the goals that God has for us.

That is what I really believe God wanted the children of Israel to do. Stop looking for obstacles. To stop making excuses for why they can’t get to where God wants them to go. He had a glorious destiny for them. God had already shown them many, many miracles that led up to their deliverance from slavery in Egypt. Yet, as soon as a moment of adversity poked its head around the corner to spy on their progress, they stopped moving. Instead, they stayed in that unproductive state wallowing in self-pity: “Because there were no graves in Egypt, hast thou taken us away to die in the wilderness?” (Exodus 14:11, KJV).

God has a better plan for you than to keep you still, wallowing in the wilderness, in self-pity. That’s why He said, “Wherefore criest thou unto me? speak unto the children of Israel, that they go forward.” Stop crying about it and just go! Move! Make some progress! No more backwards! It’s time to go on in Jesus’ name! Move it or lose it!

Looking at the stuff one has been through and the possibility of hardship ahead can be very discouraging, but press on! There is a promised land for you and I to reach. That alone is enough to urge you onward and upward. So, go ahead – be progressive today. Say within yourself, “I’m going to make it this time!”