Monday, October 31, 2011

Is GOD speaking to you right now?

John 7:  45 Finally the temple guards went back to the chief priests and the Pharisees, who asked them, “Why didn’t you bring him in?”

 46 “No one ever spoke the way this man does,” the guards replied.


My boss barked out a question. “Do you know this interview candidate from your old company?” It was a person who had played political games with me and now it was my chance to get even.  Then “that” voice popped in my head. “Be forgiving” was the message.  “Aw man… I want revenge!” was my immediate reaction.

“Yes, you’re not seriously going to consider this person, are you?” was my answer with a feeling of triumph. I had gotten my way, but was it what I needed?

  • GOD speaks to me every day; I just don’t like the message.
  • GOD guides me in the right direction all the time, I simply choose another path.
  • GOD waits patiently on me to follow HIS way; I eagerly choose my sinful way.

People have told me they never hear GOD speak, well I hear HIM all the time. When “those” people make me angry, HE says be graceful and forgiving, yet I choose to be heard and win an argument while losing the war.

No one ever spoke the way this man does” was the guards’ reply to those who wanted to trap JESUS. I can only imagine what HE was talking about that changed their mind from evil to good.

  • HE tells me to look at my sin instead of investigating someone else’s.
  • HE tells me to tell those who sin against me they are forgiven.
  • HE tells me to look at the big picture of the other person’s salvation rather than winning this argument.

You know how I know GOD is speaking to me? Usually HE tells me to do something that I don’t want to do, but I can see how it would benefit HIS kingdom, not mine. HE never gives me some crazed message rather HE simple says, “Forgive” or “give” or “serve” or “return their hatred with love.” HE speaks in a quiet voice, it takes me to listen.

  • What is GOD saying to you?
  • Are you too busy trying to get your way to hear HIM?
  • Won’t you consult with HIM before you act?
  • Will you ask GOD “what do YOU want me to do in this situation?”

Thursday, October 27, 2011

A way not to feel “empty”

John 7:  37 On the last and greatest day of the festival, Jesus stood and said in a loud voice, “Let anyone who is thirsty come to me and drink. 38 Whoever believes in me, as Scripture has said, rivers of living water will flow from within them.”


Sitting on the edge of my bed wondering if I should get back in or get up was the state of mind I was in. My whole world was crumbling around me, or so I thought.  I was floating through life because the worries had become too much for me.

Looking back, I only wish I could face problems as light as the ones I faced during, what I thought were, tumultuous times. I felt so empty. “Why was all this happening ‘to’ me?”
  • When my whole world centers around me then things happen “to” me.
  • When my whole world centers around me then situations out of my control will bring me down.
  • When my whole world centers around me then other people are the cause of my emptiness.
Selfish was the best word to summarize what I was going through.  It seemed like everyone was out to get me.  My parents didn’t understand me, the professor didn’t like me, my girlfriend dumped me, and the judicial system caused me to speed and get tickets. Is there anyone on my side?
  • JESUS said “Come to me” which means I have to leave “me” and go to HIM.
  • JESUS said “Drink” which means stop thinking in selfish ways and accept HIS ways of peace.
  • JESUS said “Believe” which means I can have a peaceful life in spite of situations.
After believing in HIM, HE gave me the HOLY SPIRIT who now resides in me.  The empty hole in my heart was now filled to the point of overflowing.  I started seeing other people and their needs whereas before I could only see mine. Instead of doing things only for me, I could now do for the masses. It’s only because of the HOLY SPIRIT that I am able to serve.
  • Do you feel empty right now?
  • Does it seem like everyone around you is against you?
  • Is life making you tired?
  • Can you “believe” that GOD cares about you when no one else does?
  • Will you let HIM fill your heart with HIS love for others?

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

I’m the “best” at being humble!

John 7: 18 Whoever speaks on their own does so to gain personal glory, but he who seeks the glory of the one who sent him is a man of truth; there is nothing false about him.


After winning a number of awards and honors I guess I became addicted to the accolades. I wanted another trophy, plaque or cup that symbolized I was performing above my peers so I deserved to be recognized. Soon my vocabulary turned into a constant progress report of what “I” was accomplishing. “I was good at that.” There I go again!
  • When I seek the approval of humans instead of seeking GOD’s approval I fail.
  • When I openly or covertly brag about my accomplishments instead of pointing to GOD I fail.
  • When I try to please those who do not understand GOD’s ways I sin.
This is my theory, I believe there is a sin GOD despises more than any and that is “pride.” I’m not saying that I should not be proud of the accomplishments of others or in my workmanship rather, I should not be plodding through life trying to make “me” look so good. Instead of seeking “personal glory” I should be looking for something else.
  • Personal glory can sometimes make me stretch the truth about me, GOD’s glory always show the “truth.”
  • Personal glory can sometimes take the focus off of GOD and onto me; GOD’s glory always points others to HIM.
  • Personal glory can sometimes blind me to the good others are doing, GOD’s glory makes me appreciate others.
Satan was also a good braggart. He was so good at what he did that he thought he could actually be GOD. There was no humility in him. GOD doesn’t want me to fall into that same trap. I should never think more highly of myself, rather praise the one who saved me, namely JESUS who is the CHRIST.

When I put the focus on HIS accomplishments, I can’t go wrong.
  • Are you trying to be heard by the masses?
  • Do you have a yearning to be recognized by your peers or superiors?
  • Can you do what you do strictly for GOD without wanting human recognition?
  • Will you honestly seek HIS ways instead of yours?

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Believing takes more than words.

John 7:3 Jesus’ brothers said to him, “Leave Galilee and go to Judea, so that your disciples there may see the works you do. 4 No one who wants to become a public figure acts in secret. Since you are doing these things, show yourself to the world.” 5 For even his own brothers did not believe in him.


“Inspect what you expect” was a term I was groomed with as a leader. In other words follow up behind the person to see if they were doing their job. Unfortunately, the more I “inspected” the more I noticed creativity flying out of the window.

I had become a micromanager, breathing down everyone’s neck. Every task I assigned was followed up with a question and soon the atmosphere of mistrust was born. It’s like I said “I trusted them”, yet assigned a private eye to spy on them.
  • Many times I said “I trust YOU LORD” yet I build plan “B” just in case HE doesn’t come through.
  • Many times I said “I trust YOU LORD” yet I lose sleep wondering if HE will take care of this problem.
  • Many times I said “I trust YOU LORD” yet I focus my efforts on trying to change an uncomfortable situation that GOD has placed me in.
Lack of trust comes from fear of the unknown. It’s kind of a defense mechanism for me. Since I am the captain of this ship I feel more comfortable seeing signs of progress rather than trusting the right things are happening in my life. GOD says something different.
  • GOD gave me enough words to believe in HIM and they are written in my heart and the Bible.
  • GOD shows me enough evidence to believe in HIS imminent return by the violence in nature and in humans.
  • GOD protected me through enough situations to believe HE will bring me through this one and many others.
When I “expect” GOD to act the way I want HIM to act then sometimes I am just using words instead of true belief. I have to drop the pretense that I trust HIM by really “trusting” HIM. This means to drop my worries, fears and doubts and “act” like HE is really going to do what HE said.
  • What has GOD promised you?
  • Are you acting like it won’t happen?
  • Do you believe HE can and will deliver you from whatever you are facing?
  • Won’t you stop faking your trust and truly believe in HIM today?

Monday, October 24, 2011

I want to run away!

John 6: 66 From this time many of his disciples turned back and no longer followed him.

   67 “You do not want to leave too, do you?” Jesus asked the Twelve.

 68 Simon Peter answered him, “Lord, to whom shall we go? You have the words of eternal life. 69 We have come to believe and to know that you are the Holy One of God.”

With a steely eyed glance my parents looked at me as I tried to lie my way out of the situation. I went to visit a young lady and as innocent as my plans were, I had not told them where I was going. We hung out most of the day and when I got home the heat from my parents could be felt at the North Pole. I just wanted to get away!
  • Uncomfortable situations in which I am wrong makes me want to run away and hide.
  • When the going gets tough I want to curl up and stay in bed.
  • Lusts sometimes drive me into a feeling of “wanting to get away” from GOD just for a moment.
When JESUS laid out the path for HIS disciples, hundreds of people left because the path was too hard. They wanted JESUS to be an earthly king so they could be rich and have temporary peace here on earth.

JESUS remained the poorest person who ever lived on earth and only had HIS mind focused on the heavenly kingdom after this life. Many people left because they had a false expectation of what GOD would do and I am no different. Fortunately for me, HE won’t let me go.
  • When times are tough and I want to run away, GOD shows me that I need to turn back to HIM.
  • When the road is difficult and full of obstacles, GOD shows me that I need to turn back to HIM.
  • When it seems like everything in life is broken, GOD shows me that I need to turn back to HIM.
Where would I go? What would I do without GOD? I don’t know but often I try things without HIM and they just don’t work. HE is the way, the truth and the life. All HE wants from me is to believe.

  • What are you facing?
  • Can you ask GOD to use HIS power to fill you up today?
  • Will you request that HE fix the situation that’s making you tired?
  • Do you hear the words “don’t give up” from HIM?

Friday, October 21, 2011

Can I learn from my mistakes?

John 6: 45 It is written in the Prophets: ‘They will all be taught by God.’ Everyone who has heard the Father and learned from him comes to me. 46 No one has seen the Father except the one who is from God; only he has seen the Father. 47 Very truly I tell you, the one who believes has eternal life. 48 I am the bread of life.


Stretching the truth about myself became a defense mechanism in uncomfortable situations. It seemed like the tougher the boss the more I sunk into covering up my mistakes rather than letting them be known.

Little did I know that one of my “hidden” mistakes would quickly surface and cost the company some money. You would think I would learn my lesson from that but I did it again until I met someone with compassion who enabled me to face my mistakes and face fears.

  • Mistakes are a part of life.
  • Sin will always be with me.
  • Stuff will be broken and stolen.
  • Things will not go as planned.

When the wheels fly off my plans I panic and work myself into a frenzy. My mind races towards the negative quickly overstepping GOD’s boundaries of my life. I think and overthink the situation when in reality there is a simple explanation for what’s going on.

  • GOD says “Come unto ME and learn from ME and I will give you rest.”
  • GOD says “I will lead you besides still waters.”
  • GOD says “I will restore your soul.”
  • GOD says “I will lead you on the path of righteousness for MY namesake.”

Truth, love, kindness and peace are a few things GOD can teach me by coming to HIM for my lessons. I never feel like a failure nor do I feel unwanted by GOD. I always feel forgiven because I am. HE enables me to rest and HE gives me peace that humans can’t. HE has given me the “bread of life” which is HIS SON.

  • What are you dealing with?
  • Can you seek GOD’s comforting words in Psalm 23?
  • Won’t you take a moment to face your fears and acknowledge your frailty?
  • Can you recognize you are connected to the most powerful being so you can never fail?

Thursday, October 20, 2011

What does GOD want from me?

John 6: 37 All those the Father gives me will come to me, and whoever comes to me I will never drive away.
40 For my Father’s will is that everyone who looks to the Son and believes in him shall have eternal life, and I will raise them up at the last day.”


“Oh no!” my mind cried out. “I’m going to miss my plane.” I forgot to set my alarm and I couldn’t find my keys. “Ugh, what a frustrating morning,” I screamed in my mind. I sped through the neighborhood only to be met with school busses stopping at what seemed to be every house.

Now clock management was crucial. Every second counted. “LORD, please, please, please get me there on time” I muttered as my heart raced! Flooring it, I reached the airport in record time. No I didn’t obey the speed limit but that’s another story. “I can still make my flight!” I thought.

To my dismay the parking lot was full and I had to go to the furthest offsite parking spot I could find which truly killed any chances of making the flight. “GOD what do you want from me” I shouted.
  • Frustrations in life cause me to blame GOD.
  • My bad choices in life cause me to forget about GOD’s will.
  • Situations out of my control cause me to think of GOD as person who will leave when the going gets tough.
Many days I have put myself in a position where I am too busy for GOD or too frustrated to even think about HIM. I don’t feel like telling people about HIS grace, mercy and love because I’m focused on the old lady swerving in front of me driving at snails’ pace.
  • GOD wants me to have peace in the middle of frustrations to show others HE is in control.
  • GOD desires that I take my frustrations to HIM and remain calm through the storm.
  • GOD yearns that I tell everyone about HIS SON and through my belief HE will draw people to HIM.
When I question “GOD what do you want from me” I really don’t want the answer rather I want my way. It’s plain what GOD wants from me, to believe in HIS SON as the one and only savior.
  • Are you frustrated by something or someone right now?
  • What obstacle did “you” put in your own way?
  • Can you turn your situation over to GOD in earnest prayer?
  • Won’t you help someone, who has doubts about GOD, believe by sharing the mercy GOD has given you?

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Believing “is” my job

John 6:  28 Then they asked him, “What must we do to do the works God requires?”
 29 Jesus answered, “The work of God is this: to believe in the one he has sent.”


Sitting alone in my apartment was great for me because I could finally feel a need to go back to church. This was no longer my parents’ decision but mine. After wasting many years I felt I needed to make up for lost time. I think I volunteered for everything in church. “GOD, this makes up for all my sinful years, right?”

  • I can never “work” away my sins.
  • I can never “work” my way into GOD’s approval.
  • I can never “work” hard enough to obtain eternal life.

I truly thought I could be “good” enough to erase the sin in my life.  In fact I stopped doing so many things soon I thought I was pretty “great.” I compared myself to my old “down trodden” friends and of course now I was better than them because they were still sinning and I wasn’t.

My attitude was smug and at that time I probably thought I could teach JESUS a thing or two.

  • The only job GOD has given me is to believe.
  • My one and only task in life that is paramount to anything is to believe.
  • The greatest thing I can do for people is to believe in JESUS.

Spreading the great news about JESUS does take work but the work doesn’t make me holy. My willingness to tell people about HIM coupled with my faith that HE is “the ONE” makes me holy. My righteousness is like, excuse the expression, a used tampon.

Many times I have the wrong attitude about working, giving, and living for GOD. It’s either out of obligation or out of guilt and shame that I press hard to do my part. GOD the FATHER gave up everything when HE gave HIS one and only SON. HE wants me to believe “everything” will be fine in spite of today’s circumstances.

HE wants me to believe all the way to death and that’s my only job.

  • Are you trying to work your way into heaven?
  • Have you turned from GOD because it seems too hard to follow HIS rules?
  • Have you been able to just “stand still” and watch the power of the LORD?
  • Can you get your hands off of GOD’s job and do yours, namely “believe?”

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Tired of being on my own power

John 6 18 A strong wind was blowing and the waters grew rough. 19 When they had rowed about three or four miles, they saw Jesus approaching the boat, walking on the water; and they were frightened. 20 But he said to them, “It is I; don’t be afraid.” 21 Then they were willing to take him into the boat, and immediately the boat reached the shore where they were heading.


Adversity was a staple when budget time came rolling around. How am I going to keep this large headcount while providing value? Attacks from other ancillary departments had to be considered so we put our heads together to strengthen our position.

It was an exhausting season that sometimes had neither fruit nor friendships but our plans got us through the conflict. Many came out wounded, sometimes fired, but we got our budget.
  • When adversity comes I try working a little harder thinking I can triumph over GOD’s trial.
  • When adversity comes I think I can “plan” my way out of the trouble, only to find more trouble.
  • When adversity comes I try to turn my fright into courage but this usually wounds many around me.
An unexpected storm caught the disciples by surprise. They didn’t have any options it was either row or die. They tried with all their might but nothing was working. JESUS showed HIS GODLY power by doing the impossible for any human, HE walked on water. This supernatural act frightened the disciples more. What were their expectations?
  • GOD is always with me in the middle of the storm, it takes me to open my frightened eyes to see HIM.
  • GOD is always ready to do supernatural things right in front of me if I am willing to accept how and what HE will do.
  • GOD is always willing and able to rescue me if I use my power to focus on HIM and not the storm.
Just because I’m good at planning my way out of some adverse situations doesn’t mean GOD won’t put an obstacle in front of me to show me “I need HIM.”  In fact running the race of life can be quite tiring without GOD.

When I invite JESUS into “my boat” adversity cannot touch me and while the turbulent waves of life are still there, HE enables me to make it to shore unscathed.
  • Are you trying to change your situation yourself?
  • What tactics are you using to manipulate GOD or the people around you to get your way?
  • Can you let go of your life and ask GOD “what do YOU want me to do?”
  • Won’t you let GOD change “you” instead of changing “that” person?
  • Will you give up your worries about “that” situation for a moment to praise GOD?

Monday, October 17, 2011

GOD asks some “crazy” questions!

John 6: 5 When Jesus looked up and saw a great crowd coming toward him, he said to Philip, “Where shall we buy bread for these people to eat?” 6 He asked this only to test him, for he already had in mind what he was going to do.


People have told me “GOD” spoke to them and said they would be rich.  “Huh” I scoffed at their statement blowing them off immediately. I thought to myself, “GOD doesn’t work like that” because, of course, I know everything about GOD, right? Wrong!
  • My doubts about what GOD is doing in another person’s life stem from my lack of faith.
  • My hesitations about a big vision that came from GOD specifically to me stem from not wanting to look foolish.
  • My suspicions about GOD still performing miracles are bathed in ignorance because I have acquired “higher” education.
GOD is all powerful, all seeing, all knowing and resides everywhere. Any situation is easy for HIM to clear up and miracles aren’t miracles to HIM.  HE has the power to do anything but for some reason HE chose specific times to perform, what I would call, a miracle.

Believe it or not, I have seen HIM perform miracles in my life. Most would say they were coincidences or some doctor or medicine healed those in question, but I say it was GOD and GOD alone who performed the same miracles I read about in the Bible.
  • When I open my spiritual eyes I can see GOD perform miracles.
  • When I remove doubt about GOD I can see HE will do some incredible things through some doubtful people like me.
  • When I believe HE will do larger things that I can’t explain GOD steps up and shows me how powerful HE can be.
JESUS knows exactly what HE is going to do in my life and wants me to see HE can do some incredible things if I would only believe. I can also tell when I put my vision in the place of HIS because it usually fulfills some lust of the world. HE still asks some crazy questions because HE wants my full attention on what HE “can” and “will” do.
  • Do you doubt GOD’s mighty power?
  • Are you busy trying to make GOD perform circus tricks instead of watching HIS true power?
  • Can you remove your doubt today and start on your journey to listening to HIM even if it takes a while to hear HIM?

Friday, October 14, 2011

GOD does not need to be proven.

John 5:  36 “I have testimony weightier than that of John. For the works that the Father has given me to finish—the very works that I am doing—testify that the Father has sent me. 37 And the Father who sent me has himself testified concerning me. You have never heard his voice nor seen his form…


Finally I finished one problem after an hour of work. The advanced math class was quite challenging because I had to not only compute the answer, but show the right steps it took to derive my solution.

Each postulate, hypothesis and puzzle had to have an “exact” answer which could be proven by others otherwise it would not be believed.

  • Many times I don’t believe GOD will help because HE doesn’t do things my way.
  • Many times I doubt GOD because HE is not operating on my schedule.
  • Many times I blame GOD because I’m busy looking at someone else’s action rather than focusing on mine.

I have to tell the truth sometimes I doubt GOD so I can be in control. It seems as if life runs crazy and I just want to pull the lever and make something happen. Then when my plans fail, I come running back to GOD who I didn’t believe in the first place.

  • GOD’s existence doesn’t require proof it requires worship.
  • GOD’s SON doesn’t need my blessing to be called KING of kings and LORD of lords.
  • GOD’s presence doesn’t my need eyes to see HIM because my sin blinds me to what is standing right in front of me.

Daily GOD shows HIMSELF and my distracted mind ignores what HE is doing. My sinful expectations of “how” HE should appear to me, blinds me of the many things HE does right before my eyes. GOD operates the way HE operates and as harsh as that sounds, HE operates with unadulterated love for me.

  • Are you busy trying to make GOD appear the way you want HIM to appear?
  • Do you feel you have to prove HIS existence to someone?
  • Do you think HE should prove HIS existence to you?
  • Won’t you trade your disbelief for faith that worships GOD as the highest authority?

Thursday, October 13, 2011

Put my mind on something worthwhile

John 5: 21 For just as the Father raises the dead and gives them life, even so the Son gives life to whom he is pleased to give it. 22 Moreover, the Father judges no one, but has entrusted all judgment to the Son, 23 that all may honor the Son just as they honor the Father. Whoever does not honor the Son does not honor the Father, who sent him.


Phone call after phone call drove my frustration higher and higher. I sent e-mails and did, what I thought, were the right things to do but they would not respond. This elite group seemed to shun my very existence. Here we go again, not fitting in!

“Forget them, I don’t need them anyway!” I thought to myself. But why don’t they want me?
  • I have been turned down by employers and have gotten disappointed.
  • I have been turned down by groups and felt rejected.
  • I have been turned down by a person I asked for a simple dance and felt insulted.
Nothing was wrong with the things I sought after, so at least I thought. GOD has a strange, yet supreme way of keeping me out of the things that would move me off HIS course. What is HIS plan?
  • GOD the FATHER wants me to focus on GOD the SON who gives me life.
  • GOD the FATHER wants me to focus on GOD the SON who one day will judge all of my actions.
  • GOD the FATHER wants me to focus on GOD the SON who deserves equal honor that I give to the FATHER.
Many ideas, plans and desires pop into my head that distract me from focusing on what is truly valuable. GOD the FATHER, GOD the SON and GOD the HOLY SPIRIT should remain paramount in my mind at all times. Yes it feels great to be part of “that” group and to achieve goals. Believe me I have been “in the club” many times and received numerous awards.

But just as much as I have been “in” I have been “out.” It’s like chasing rainbows after a while. GOD excuses my distractions but loves when I focus on the one true prize namely “THE SON.” The more I put my mind on HIM the better off I am.
  • What are you distracted by?
  • Is your life too busy for GOD?
  • Have you said “I will worship HIM after things get better?”
  • Can you begin worshipping HIM right now in the middle of the storm?
  • Won’t you practice being generous while you are poor so you will give more when you are rich?

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

I’m being pursued

John 5: 5 One who was there had been an invalid for thirty-eight years. 6 When Jesus saw him lying there and learned that he had been in this condition for a long time, he asked him, “Do you want to get well?”

 7 “Sir,” the invalid replied, “I have no one to help me into the pool when the water is stirred. While I am trying to get in, someone else goes down ahead of me.”

 8 Then Jesus said to him, “Get up! Pick up your mat and walk.” 9 At once the man was cured; he picked up his mat and walked.


Boredom was my accepted lifestyle. “I guess I’m sentenced to die here in this go nowhere job”, I thought to myself. Then the phone rang. It was a company who had “heard” about me. Suddenly life ran through my veins. I was once again excited and I could get out of this dump!
  • Being pursued by humans feels great because it feeds my ego.
  • Feeling wanted by humans is wonderful because it feeds my ego.
  • Being needed by humans is magnificent because it feeds my ego.
It feels great getting my ego stroked! I mean when people pursue me for advice or pursue me for me, it makes me feel… I don’t know… better than I thought I was. Unfortunately once my ego is fed, I start thinking I’m better than I really am.

GOD, the creator of universes, the MOST HIGH, the greatest being, decided to pursue me because I turned my back on HIM. In fact the more I run from HIM, the more HE pursues me.
  • GOD saw I would not accept HIS ways so HE took the penalty for my sin.
  • GOD saw I would try to find my own way so HE placed obstacles in my way until I turned my eyes to HIM.
  • GOD saw I would never remember what HE told me so HE placed the HOLY SPIRIT inside me.
Even today HE pursues me. After years and years of walking with HIM, HE still molds my sinful heart towards HIS and guides me through this scary thing called life. HE asked the paralyzed man “do you want to get well?”

There was nothing the man could do to make himself well. GOD pursued him and healed him once the man admitted he needed help and was willing to be helped. GOD pursues me and HE wants me to pursue HIM.

Think of a baby. He/she has all the needs, yet when he/she reaches out and smiles at me, he/she makes me want to do more. The more I seek HIM the more HE pursues me and blesses me!
  • Are you trying to pursue GOD?
  • How often do you speak to HIM?
  • Have you asked HIM “what do you want me to do?”

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Looks can be deceiving.

John 4: 39 Many of the Samaritans from that town believed in him because of the woman’s testimony, “He told me everything I ever did.” 40 So when the Samaritans came to him, they urged him to stay with them, and he stayed two days. 41 And because of his words many more became believers.

 42 They said to the woman, “We no longer believe just because of what you said; now we have heard for ourselves, and we know that this man really is the Savior of the world.”


Telling everyone about the wrong things I have done in my life is actually no party.  I liked when people would complement me on how “good” I was because it fit right into the political game I was playing so well. Seems as if people didn’t really care if I were actually sincere with my “goodness”, as long as I had the appearance, I would be okay.

It seems as if the better I look to humans the worse I look to GOD.
GOD looks through my “got it together” exterior only to find a messed up interior.
Fear ensues when I have to publicly confess my wicked heart because I may damage my reputation.

Testimonies are what the world needs yet we pursue the wealthy and powerful who hide their stories so well. The more resources I had the easier it was to hide my lusts. It was kind of a diversion tactic to throw people off my scent. BUT GOD wants a testimony.

  • GOD is pleased when I tell people I have lusted and “battle” it even today in order to stay married.
  • GOD is pleased when I tell people I had no limits to the evil I would have gone along with to keep my wealth and power.
  • GOD is pleased when I tell people I am no better than the worse sinner no matter how heinous the crime.

None of my sins have power over me any longer. I tell people about my fears, doubts and worries and then I look around and they are gone. GOD reaches into my heart and cleans out the gook and grime and replaces it with HIS tenderness.

I guess by telling people about my sin they will not revere me rather they can confess their sins and revere the one who died for them, namely JESUS. The Samaritans didn’t like the Jews uppity ways of trying to “appear” clean. They finally had true “Great News” that JESUS doesn’t care about sin rather HE cares about sinners like me.

  • What sin are you trying to hide?
  • What sin are you openly broadcasting?
  • Do you think GOD is pleased with the thing you are trying to hide?
  • Can you confess to others and stop trying to appear “good” so GOD can use your heart?

Monday, October 10, 2011

GOD doesn’t have poison ears!

John 4: 27 Just then his disciples returned and were surprised to find him talking with a woman. But no one asked, “What do you want?” or “Why are you talking with her?”

“Hello, how is your day going?” someone said to me. But this wasn’t any old “someone,” it was a very crafty person who had said some nasty things in the past. “I wonder what they meant by that?” I thought to myself. For the rest of the day I went around with my guards higher than ever. Everyone was a suspect and every word was scrutinized.
  • When I have been hurt poison can enter my heart.
  • When my heart has poison in it then my tongue will produce venom.
  • When my heart has poison in it then my ears listen for poison.
Some people just can’t do or say anything right. Ask my family and they will tell you! When my ears are listening for something poison I will find it. I guess it stems from being a leader in a poisonous environment. Or perhaps it comes from hurt from the past. Maybe it’s just that the person is taking a dig at me, either way, my ears will pick up the words and the fight is on.
  • GOD wants me to be ready to show grace at all times otherwise I won’t be shown grace.
  • GOD wants me to listen to people without my prejudice filters.
  • GOD wants me to hear “beyond” the words that are said so that I can pray earnestly for that person.
Forgiveness, grace and mercy don’t come easily from me. When I have my mind set that the “opposition” is a schemer and not worth my time, I put my defense mechanism up and capture their words as being poison. Sometimes I’m right and sometimes I’m wrong isn’t good enough for GOD.

JESUS listened to the Samaritan woman without the prejudice of race or gender. HE knew she was a sinner and listened with the intent to heal her no matter what she said. That’s hard for me to do, but quite possible. Let “it” go or pray or just ignore the statement while throwing the harmful words into the “forget about it” pile are ways to overcome my judgmental ears.

I must view the person like GOD views them, namely “forgiven.” Yes I should be wise as serpents BUT GOD also says be harmless as doves.
  • Are you blaming someone?
  • Can “that” person say or do anything right?
  • Are you quick to judge some people because of your hurt?
  • Won’t you let your guards down a little to see the other person needs GOD as much as you?
  • Can you ask GOD to clean your heart so your words and “thoughts” will be pure?

Friday, October 7, 2011

GOD wants me to “know” HIM with my heart!

John 4: 23 Yet a time is coming and has now come when the true worshipers will worship the Father in the Spirit and in truth, for they are the kind of worshipers the Father seeks. 24 God is spirit, and his worshipers must worship in the Spirit and in truth.”


Remembering the “Be-Attitudes” was a goal of mine because my Sunday school teacher told me to do it.  Maybe I would get some sort of prize if I could spit out these memorable verses. I did and I believe there was some sort of ribbon or a token.

Look at me! I can remember verses and spit them out really fast!  I will be the envy of my class and I’m sure GOD is pleased with my knowledge!
  • Knowing GOD’s word doesn’t mean I know GOD.
  • Going to church doesn’t mean I am following GOD.
  • Being nice doesn’t mean I am living GOD’s ways.
Without “the SPIRIT” I cannot worship GOD.  Without understanding GOD’s word which is the “truth”, I cannot worship GOD.  Both are equally important. “How do I know?” you ask, because HE placed both in my heart to make sure I worship HIM the right way.
  • Before I was born, GOD wrote HIS word on my heart.
  • After my birth my sin nature makes me forget my relationship with GOD so I had to realize I was like everyone else, a sinner.
  • When I believed JESUS is GOD who saved me from eternal separation from HIM, I received the HOLY SPIRIT and eternal life.
With the HOLY SPIRIT and GOD’s word, I can worship HIM the way HE wants to be worshipped. As I get more mature with my walk with GOD I realize my “heart” knowledge of GOD is just as important as my “head” knowledge of HIM.  I can know someone needs help, but without compassion I will not be moved to do anything.

I can try to worship GOD because it’s the right thing to do, but HE really wants me to “want” to serve HIM instead of being obligated.
  • Serving GOD in SPIRIT and in Truth should be an exciting experience between just HIM and me.
  • Serving GOD in SPIRIT and in Truth means I believe HIS ways first before I make my decisions.
  • Serving GOD in SPIRIT and in Truth supersedes my feelings, my plans, my doubts and worries.
GOD leads my decisions and at times it’s scary to have HIM do that. But the more I let HIM the better off I am.
  • Do you think GOD is impressed with your church attendance and giving?
  • Can you serve HIM without people knowing what you did?
  • Won’t you start trying to get to know GOD a little better?

Thursday, October 6, 2011

Is JESUS greater than me?

John 3: 30 He must become greater; I must become less.”


Tired of the club scene and finally coming to my senses, I went back to church and even became a Sunday school teacher. I spent hours the night before preparing my lesson.  I gave my message to the somewhat attentive teens.

Then I asked “how did I do?” One of them replied “You did very well, but I didn’t understand what you were talking about at all.” Wait! was that a bruise to my ego?
  • In the past I have gone to church because that’s what my parents told me to do.
  • In the past I prayed and thought to myself “Aren’t I just a good person? Look at me praying!”
  • In the past I wanted to have a title in church or be part of some group.
  • In the past I desired accolades from humans for all the great service “I” was doing.

I didn’t know I was bragging about my service but somehow my “good” nature would find its way into conversations. Someone may have said “Could you pass the milk?” and my reply would have been “Sure, I don’t drink dairy when I go on missions trips because I could get sick.”

GOD doesn’t need another person bragging about themselves, HE already has enough of those. In fact when I brag about my service, even inadvertently, I am secretly seeking all eyes on me. No wonder GOD wants me to give in secret, pray in secret and serve in secret.

GOD wants all eyes on the one and only SON, the savior of all mankind. It’s not about my job nor is it about my finances even though GOD is concerned about these things. It’s all about what JESUS has done for me. HE wants me to point my entire life, good and bad, toward HIM.
  • I need to point people to praise GOD instead of looking at what I’m doing.
  • I need to have others praise GOD especially when I am going through trials.
  • I need to tell people to praise GOD because HE is much greater than me.
Awards and accolades are nice! I have received a lot of them throughout the years. But they pale in comparison to heavenly rewards GOD has for me. HE gives them to me when I truly do an act of humility specifically for HIM. GOD must come first in my life and everything else is secondary.
  • Are you vying for attention by telling everyone your “pity” story?
  • Are you accidentally bragging about your “service?”
  • Can you serve GOD without being in front of the crowd for a change?
  • Will you forget seeking “self-assurance” from humans for once and do something for GOD in secret?

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

GOD saw that too?

John 3: 16 For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life. 17 For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but to save the world through him. 18 Whoever believes in him is not condemned, but whoever does not believe stands condemned already because they have not believed in the name of God’s one and only Son.

19 This is the verdict: Light has come into the world, but people loved darkness instead of light because their deeds were evil. 20 Everyone who does evil hates the light, and will not come into the light for fear that their deeds will be exposed. 21 But whoever lives by the truth comes into the light, so that it may be seen plainly that what they have done has been done in the sight of God.


My boss’s boss sent an e-mail to a group of us one day.  It was a humorous “R” rated clip that showed the reaction of a man seeing a nude woman in a strange place. Wow! I thought to myself. Here I am a follower of GOD receiving this tempting video.

Then another thought said “watch it again.” I guess after watching it eight or ten more times I finally got offended. But how cool was it to be in the “in crowd” Huh?
  • Every sin that I do alone is done in the middle of a large audience.
  • Every sneaky thing I do will be broadcast to everyone.
  • Every time I think I am “getting away” with something only makes sin easier to do.
  • Every action I do is seen by GOD.
JESUS knew every sin I would ever do and HE died for me anyway. HE saw me watch the video “then” and HE sees my fear and doubt and disbelief in HIM “now.” There is nothing I can do or think that is hidden from HIM.
  • Coming into the light means I can openly admit to GOD and humans that I am a sinner.
  • Coming into the light means I actually try to understand what GOD wants instead of telling HIM what I think I need.
  • Coming into the light means I am truly sorry for the sins I do.
Can you imagine how embarrassing it is to have every secret thing that I have done put on the news? GOD’s grace is amazing so HE doesn’t broadcast my baggage, for now. I do know it’s coming one day though, so I try to get practice broadcasting my sins as much as I can.  I guess my statement is changing from “they are sinners” to “I am a sinner.”
  • What sin are you trying to hide?
  • Are you on the wrong path right now?
  • Can you forgive yourself because GOD has forgiven you for “all” your sins?
  • Won’t you tell someone about how GOD has forgiven you for “that” sin?