Friday, October 31, 2014

Fasting Prayer Belief

Ezra 8: 21 There, by the Ahava Canal, I proclaimed a fast, so that we might humble ourselves before our God and ask him for a safe journey for us and our children, with all our possessions. 22 I was ashamed to ask the king for soldiers and horsemen to protect us from enemies on the road, because we had told the king, “The gracious hand of our God is on everyone who looks to him, but his great anger is against all who forsake him.” 23 So we fasted and petitioned our God about this, and he answered our prayer.


Upon reading this I could not think of an example because the message was too powerful. There were too many elements that caught my eye.

Ezra declared a fast to humble the group.
            What I hear is I need to fast every now and then to see just how much I need GOD.

Ezra asked GOD for a safe journey, not only for himself but everyone who traveled with him.
            What I hear is I need to ask GOD for HIS protection of all those HE sends to me.

Ezra was ashamed to ask the king to protect them because of their belief in GOD’s deliverance.
            What I hear is belief takes faith and the acceptance of trouble or protection from GOD.

Ezra did what he said by fasting and praying and GOD answered their prayer.
            What I hear is believe and move forward because GOD is listening.

This is an amazing piece of history because GOD delivered a weak broken band of people, who were carrying valuable items, from thieves and enemies who could care less about them.  I imagine they didn’t sleep very well during this three day journey. I imagine they felt frightened yet driven to complete the task at hand.

Depending on GOD every step of the way must have felt pretty scary BUT GOD was faithful and protected them, not because they were sinless, but because HE is GOD.

  • Are you about to go through a trial?
  • Do you feel you are holding fast to your beliefs?
  • Have you taken time to humble yourself by fasting and praying?
  • Will you take the time to ask GOD for HIS protection of you, the people around you and your stuff?

Thursday, October 30, 2014


Ezra 7:Ezra arrived in Jerusalem in the fifth month of the seventh year of the king. He had begun his journey from Babylon on the first day of the first month, and he arrived in Jerusalem on the first day of the fifth month, for the gracious hand of his God was on him. 10 For Ezra had devoted himself to the study and observance of the Law of the Lord, and to teaching its decrees and laws in Israel.


Looking back on many rough times I can see where GOD has had HIS hand on me. From bullies at my school to thugs robbing me to having no mentor or guide in college all the way to today, I can see GOD’s hand on me.

  • GOD has HIS hand on me through very difficult times.
  • GOD has HIS hand on me through extreme rough times.
  • GOD has HIS hand on me through times I had no idea how I was going to escape.

Devotion is that drive that says “I will never give up.” Ezra was devoted to GOD and GOD is devoted to those who HIS SON has saved. GOD says to those “I will never leave you or forsake you.”

My devotion is faulty. I doubt, fear and worry BUT GOD’s devotion to me is solid. It is un-waving. It is like a tree planted by the water, it shall not be moved. GOD has devotion to me and it is up to me to be devoted to HIM.

  • Are you devoted to GOD?
  • When times are good do you find yourself dropping GOD off and picking HIM back up when times are bad?
  • Can you devote a small portion of your life to GOD and keep adding more and more to HIM daily?

Wednesday, October 29, 2014

Celebrate GOD’s Protection Longer

Ezra 6: 22 For seven days they celebrated with joy the Festival of Unleavened Bread, because the Lord had filled them with joy by changing the attitude of the king of Assyria so that he assisted them in the work on the house of God, the God of Israel.


Scribbling on a pad trying to figure out a problem, I didn’t notice everyone in the office was missing. Someone came to my desk and said, aren’t you going to come to the meeting? As I walked in family and friends were there and they were celebrating me for my accomplishments with the highest award. I praised GOD and was excited.

Months later when I didn’t get the top job running a large portion of a large company I pouted at GOD.  My celebration didn’t last very long.

·         When I use GOD to get my way, my celebrations don’t last very long.
·         When I use GOD to get my way, my celebrations only pertain to what I perceive as blessings.
·         When I use GOD to get my way, my celebrations only happen during the good times.

Fair weather celebrations are nice BUT GOD wants so much more from me. HE wants me to celebrate HIM during good and bad times. HE desires praise in the middle of the storm before I reach dry land. HE enjoys my celebration of HIM before things get better.

·         GOD wants my true praise.
·         GOD wants my whole praise.
·         GOD wants my praise even when I don’t see the deliverance yet.

GOD fights my battle and I need to praise HIM in the middle of the battle. After the battle is won then I need to remember that it was HE who brought me through the storm. And when I face another battle I need to trust that HE will deliver me through this one and the next and the next.

·         Do you remember celebrating GOD?
·         Are you in the middle of doubting HIM now?
·         Can you see HIS deliverance on its way?
·         Will you praise HIM for fighting your battle today? 

Tuesday, October 28, 2014

HIS Watchful Eye

Ezra 5:At that time Tattenai, governor of Trans-Euphrates, and Shethar-Bozenai and their associates went to them and asked, “Who authorized you to rebuild this temple and to finish it?” They also asked, “What are the names of those who are constructing this building?” But the eye of their God was watching over the elders of the Jews, and they were not stopped until a report could go to Darius and his written reply be received.


Arrogant was the best term I could use for this guy. I mean he boasted and bullied. Unfortunately for me I got on his wrong side and I was on his radar.  I put my head down and focused on work, but to no avail, this guy was after me.

When he called me in his office, I braced myself for the worst. “Sit down!” He said in his gruff way. “You are being promoted, seems like somebody likes you.”

  • There have been times where I have been scared.
  • There have been times where I have been worried.
  • There have been times where I have been filled with fear.

It seems like there have been many times where the pressure has been on or something was on the way to harm or hurt me. Several times in my life I “almost” stepped in front of the driver who didn’t see me, nor I them. How was I protected?

  • GOD watches over me more than HE watches over sparrows.
  • GOD watches over me and the HOLY SPIRIT pleads on my behalf in utterances I can’t understand.
  • GOD watches over me when I’m foolish, scared, worried or full of fear.

Defenseless is what I am. Protected is what I believe in. Life seems scary at times, especially when everything isn’t going according to the script I wrote for myself. When I hit a puddle and the car spun around on the expressway, no one touched us. BUT GOD did. GOD watches over me daily and it’s up to me to praise HIM for who HE is!

  • Are you scared?
  • Are you worried?
  • Do you have fear?
  • Can you open your mouth today and just simply say “JESUS?”

Monday, October 27, 2014

Being the Opposition

Ezra 4:But Zerubbabel, Joshua and the rest of the heads of the families of Israel answered, “You have no part with us in building a temple to our God. We alone will build it for the Lord, the God of Israel, as King Cyrus, the king of Persia, commanded us.”

Then the peoples around them set out to discourage the people of Judah and make them afraid to go on building. They bribed officials to work against them and frustrate their plans during the entire reign of Cyrus king of Persia and down to the reign of Darius king of Persia.


After our meeting, we parted with our plan to build it ourselves. Our boss’s, boss’s boss was taking too long to give us the funding we needed so we found a way to get the work done without internal funding. We worked hard and, at the convention, our project was the big hit!

We won the battle but later found out we lost the war.  Internal opposition grew. It was harder to get things done and department after department met us with frowns. We were the opposition instead of the solution.

  • Sometimes I think I am providing solutions when I am really opposing.
  • Sometimes I think I am helping when I am really hurting.
  • Sometimes I think I am part of the team when really I am part of a mob.

Challenging the norm is quite alright if done the right way. If the norm isn’t challenged, then innovation can’t happen. BUT I must consider when and where this is appropriate. The officials thought they were doing the right thing by opposing the rebuild of Jerusalem in the passage but in reality they were opposing what GOD had ordained.

  • GOD wants me to consult HIM before I go into battle.
  • GOD wants me to be humble before HIM to chart my course.
  • GOD wants me to look for unity instead of opposition.

In the fight for power it is taught to collect as many people on my side as possible then I can be successful. BUT GOD says all I need is HIM on my side to be successful. This means I need to rely on tools that don’t seem like they would work. HE wants me to rely on humility, peace, love, kindness and compassion.

The world would look at that type of person as a sap, BUT GOD loves those who pursue HIS ways and look to HIM for protection.

  • Are you the opposition?
  • Do you talk about “that” person?
  • Can you spit out your poison and speak about them with grace?
  • Will you work on unity instead of ‘winning?”

Friday, October 24, 2014

Keep Going in Spite of Fear

Ezra 3Despite their fear of the peoples around them, they built the altar on its foundation and sacrificed burnt offerings on it to the Lord, both the morning and evening sacrifices.


On the first day of the seventh month they began to offer burnt offerings to the Lord, though the foundation of the Lord’s temple had not yet been laid.


10 When the builders laid the foundation of the temple of the Lord, the priests in their vestments and with trumpets, and the Levites (the sons of Asaph) with cymbals, took their places to praise the Lord, as prescribed by David king of Israel.

11 With praise and thanksgiving they sang to the Lord:
“He is good;
    his love toward Israel endures forever.”
And all the people gave a great shout of praise to the Lord, because the foundation of the house of the Lord was laid.


Things looked quite pitiful for a while. Setback after setback it looked as if the project would never be done. We finally had to cut loose one part of the project that we struggled over because it just wasn’t coming to fruition. I remember being called into the president’s office and being asked, “Is this thing ever going to fly?” When I walked out of the office I could feel the tension from everyone around me. My boss said, “Keep going you are almost there.”

  • Sometimes things around me seem grim.
  • Sometimes situations I’m in seem lost.
  • Sometimes my efforts seem fruitless and everyone around me is full of fear.

When things look grim it seems like more and more things go wrong. More things break and more those who oppose what I am doing seem to salivate at the calamity.  BUT GOD says not to react.

  • GOD says keep going “For I am with you.”
  • GOD says keep going “For MY burden is light.”
  • GOD says keep going “For MY love is great for you and MY plan is to prosper you.”

We finished the project and everyone was rewarded heavily. It was a true success that made news. All of the nay-sayers and assassins had to back off. Only GOD brought me through the tough times and HE continues to this day.

  • Are you facing a difficult time?
  • Are you filled with fear?
  • Can you follow GOD in spite of your fear?
  • Will you continue to follow HIS leading and keep moving forward? 
  • Can you praise GOD today for enabling you to take another step?

Thursday, October 23, 2014

First Steps to the Return

Ezra 2: 64 The whole company numbered 42,360, 65 besides their 7,337 male and female slaves; and they also had 200 male and female singers. 66 They had 736 horses, 245 mules,67 435 camels and 6,720 donkeys.

68 When they arrived at the house of the Lord in Jerusalem, some of the heads of the families gave freewill offerings toward the rebuilding of the house of God on its site.


After finishing my final paperwork I stood in my home office. No commute. No conference calls. No meetings. Silence. My career had shifted after the company decided to eliminate positions and I found myself wondering what to do. My previous pace was fast and pressured. I questioned the directions of the numerous people who gave me input.

They had great intentions in providing suggestions, but until I quieted down, I could not hear what I was supposed to be doing.

  • After my turmoil, I ponder what happens next.
  • After my trial, I question where I am supposed to go.
  • After my difficulty, I wonder “am I good enough?”

When I ask myself “Am I good enough” I am still looking at myself for all the answers. I then turn into judge, jury and executioner, quickly convicting myself of all my sins and missteps. GOD does want me to admit I am a sinner, BUT HE also wants me to move on, knowing HE has forgiven me. HE sometimes wants me to start over, dropping my misinterpretations of HIM along the way.

  • GOD wants me to look at HIM rather than looking at my accomplishments.
  • GOD wants me to look at HIM rather than looking at my might.
  • GOD wants me to look at HIM rather than looking at my resources.

Hundreds of thousands of GOD’s people had been taken into captivity and they returned with a pitiful few. Their resources were low yet their spirit was not broken. They gave and that was the first step to the return. On the journey back GOD said to me “be generous and you will be blessed.”

  • Are you just getting out of a huge trial?
  • Are you still pondering the aftermath of devastation?
  • Can you mourn for a shorter period of time and start to focus on GOD’s peace?
  • Will you drop your struggles and focus on rebuilding HIS temple within you, HIS way this time?
  • Will you ask GOD for the spirit of generosity today?

Wednesday, October 22, 2014

GOD Moves Hearts

Ezra 1:Then the family heads of Judah and Benjamin, and the priests and Levites—everyone whose heart God had moved—prepared to go up and build the house of the Lord in Jerusalem.


Stuffing my feet under the chair to hide my holey shoes wasn’t good enough to not be seen. My fraternity brother noticed me and the next meeting brought me a pair of his shoes. I now had one and a half pairs of shoes.

Sitting on the trunk of my broken down car in the dark in the middle of nowhere, an elderly couple stopped and picked me up. They did not look like me or know why I was on my trunk. They asked “Do you know GOD?” I could feel their prayers as they dropped me off at the rest area five miles away.

  • Sometimes things look dim.
  • Sometimes things look grim.
  • Sometimes things look pitiful.

When things were finally out of my control and there was nowhere to turn, GOD stirred someone’s heart to provide something I needed. I hadn’t even prayed for the thing I needed yet GOD saw fit to provide it to me anyway.

  • GOD wants my heart to be open for HIS bidding.
  • GOD wants my heart to be open for HIS will.
  • GOD wants my heart to be open so HE can execute HIS wonderful plan HE has for me.

GOD wants to use me in marvelous ways, if I’m willing. When the clouds of life are in the way I cannot seem to see the SON. BUT GOD clears my path, dusts me off and now it’s my turn to help others. GOD moves my heart.

  • Are you open to GOD moving your heart?
  • Are you willing to listen to HIM?
  • Will you show compassion on “that person?”
  • Can you be a blessing to someone today?

Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Building People

2 Chronicles 36: 23 “This is what Cyrus king of Persia says:

“‘The Lord, the God of heaven, has given me all the kingdoms of the earth and he has appointed me to build a temple for him at Jerusalem in Judah. Any of his people among you may go up, and may the Lord their God be with them.’”


Find their flaw, document it and express it to the network of people was the method used in this particular company to get promoted or more budget or more responsibility. It really seemed sad, but there was one person who I admired who said to me “Be a king maker.” As I pondered these words I wondered “How?” I mean I’m not on the top, how will I put someone where I’m not?

  • When everyone is tearing people down I have a choice to be like them or not.
  • When people are focused on slander, lies and misconceptions I have a choice to be like them or not.
  • When the crowd is full of malice, poison and spite, I have a choice to be like them or not.

In the middle of a chaotic workplace, he was telling me to “build people up” rather than tearing them down. Those who will be in my corner will remain there and those who aren’t will not. I remembered these words as I worked in a very difficult neighborhood who did not focus on GOD rather they turned to gang violence.

We went out and invited people to the church and they said things like “I have no clothes to wear” or “I haven’t been in a while” but they came when we said to them “You have a lot to offer and only you can help others.” I prayed with people and by building them up, they actually came to the church. GOD drew them back to HIM.

  • GOD wants me to build people up because that person is a new temple.
  • GOD wants me to build people up because HE wants to draw them to HIM.
  • GOD wants me to build people up because my words will mimic HIS and be full of grace.

Building people up can only be done when I can appreciate how GOD has made me. If I don’t like how GOD made me then I will speak poorly about others. If I can understand that GOD was very pleased when HE made me, that HE understands my flaws and loves me anyway, then I can be excited about HIS people.

  • Are you in the process of tearing people down or building them up?
  • Do you see people as a threat or GOD’s workmanship?
  • Can you stop spreading your poison about “those people” and begin building up the flock GOD has sent to you?

Monday, October 20, 2014

How to Lead the People

2 Chronicles 35:Josiah provided for all the lay people who were there a total of thirty thousand lambs and goats for the Passover offerings, and also three thousand cattle—all from the king’s own possessions.


More money was going in the bank as I accepted my new post. I was now in management and now I had more money and an expense account. I took my team to lunch and put in on the account. Everyone was happy so I did it again and again.

Accounting called me and asked me what the lunches were for. “Good and welfare?” I said hesitantly. “You can’t do that” they responded. I quickly realized I had to spend my own money if I wanted to treat my team. It was a good move.

  • I have learned that leaders need to be generous because GOD is generous.
  • I have learned that leaders need to factor others in their ascent to the top because GOD raised us up.
  • I have learned that leaders need to enjoy seeing their flock thrive not just themselves because GOD provided grace.

Leadership doesn’t mean more for me rather more for us! My team got me where I was and they need to be celebrated. We made it because GOD brought us to this point and our celebration needs to be pointed at HIM.

  • Are you leading a group or family without celebrating them?
  • Do you think your extra money is only for you?
  • Can you remember that GOD raised you up so you can serve the people?
  • Will you reach out to people and say thank you for helping me get to this point?

Friday, October 17, 2014

Responding Quick Enough

2 Chronicles 34: 27 Because your heart was responsive and you humbled yourself before God when you heard what he spoke against this place and its people, and because you humbled yourself before me and tore your robes and wept in my presence, I have heard you, declares the Lord. 


“Toughen up” was the phrase given to me as I was told to fire a person. This was a test to see if I could cut it in management. Everyone around me seemed to be scared of this person but I sat him down with my letter to him and simply said, “Your services are no longer needed here.”

“What was everyone scared about?” I thought to myself. Years later and several fired people later, I ran into a person who I had to “let go” who seemed different. He was no longer a thing that could be fired; rather he was a human with a family. When I “let him go” something bothered me.  I wonder what that was.

  • Sometimes my drive keeps me from hearing things.
  • Sometimes my determination keeps me from listening.
  • Sometimes my position keeps me from having a soft heart.

Now I know why some of the elderly are so nice. After “letting people go” in a cold calloused way, I now see I had to harden my heart in order to be “tough enough” to make it in the position. I don’t mean I would not fire a rebellious or slothful employee, I mean I have to have a different courage.

  • I have to have courage enough to listen to GOD rather than letting my ambition deafen me.
  • I have to have courage enough to listen to GOD rather than plodding down a destructive course.
  • I have to have courage enough to listen to GOD rather than thinking everything will be fine if I don’t repent.

GOD wants me to have a humbled heart. I have to appreciate rather than alienate. HE tells me to live the way HE designed and only HE can determine my course. My action is to have a responsive heart which takes spiritual ears and a humbled soul.

  • Are you at war with GOD?
  • Do you think you will win the fight against GOD?
  • Can you stop the battle and follow HIS leading?
  • Will you humble yourself and listen to what HE has to say? 

Thursday, October 16, 2014

Can I Hear God?

2 Chronicles 33: 10 The Lord spoke to Manasseh and his people, but they paid no attention.


“Why did I just lie?” was the final straw. At this point I was lying for no reason at all. There was nothing to gain so in all respects I was lying to myself. It wasn’t the lie that brought me around, but the question. Where did that question come from?

  • There are times when I hear GOD and I choose to ignore HIM.
  • There are moments when GOD is telling me to do something and I sit back and close my ears.
  • There are periods where I am throwing a tantrum and I refuse to do what GOD is saying.

GOD speaks to me each and every day.  HE placed HIS laws in my heart as HE did every human HE made. HE says “Forgive that person” or “Don’t do that this time” or “Be Strong, do not be discouraged” to me and in my own bumbling way I ignore what HE says.

  • GOD wants me to listen to HIM on a daily basis.
  • GOD wants me to read HIS word so HE can speak to me.
  • GOD wants me to follow HIS ways so HE will make me fruitful.

GOD speaks to me through HIS creation when I can see growth, sun and rain. It’s up to me to appreciate it.  GOD speaks to me through people in calm and trying situations. It’s up to me to praise HIM about it. GOD speaks to me through HIS Bible. It’s up to me to absorb what HE is saying. GOD speaks to me through the HOLY SPIRIT who brings me comfort. It’s up to me to receive peace.

GOD speaks to me daily. HE wants me to speak back to HIM.

  • Are you confused or fearful?
  • Have you ever asked “How can I hear GOD?”
  • Can you stop and look around and see what GOD is saying to you right now?
  • Will you let GOD permeate your heart?

Wednesday, October 15, 2014

Have Confidence Today

2 Chronicles 32:“Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid or discouraged because of the king of Assyria and the vast army with him, for there is a greater power with us than with him. With him is only the arm of flesh, but with us is the Lord our God to help us and to fight our battles.” And the people gained confidence from what Hezekiah the king of Judah said.


Life has a way of throwing a curve ball each and every day. One minute things are smooth sailing, the next there is bad news about a loved one getting sick or dying or a job goes away or a relationship is torn to shreds. In these times I have had questions.

  • What should I do now?
  • What is going to happen?
  • What if I can’t withstand the trial?

GOD said some marvelous things to me today.

  • GOD said to me “Be strong” knowing my strength is nothing compared to HIS.
  • GOD said to me “Be courageous” knowing my courage is faulty compared to HIS.
  • GOD said to me “Do not be afraid” knowing my faith is nothing compared to HIS..
  • GOD said to me “Do not be discouraged” knowing my drive and determination is nothing compared to HIS.

GOD says to me “I will fight your battles today.” I must know that HE is in control of this day. What seems to be a problem is simple for HIM. GOD says to me “Believe, trust and watch MY deliverance from any trial you are going through.

  • Does the trial you are going through seem impossible?
  • Does it seem like problems are coming at you from all sides?
  • Can you slow down for a moment and listen to what GOD is saying to you today?
  • Can you hear “Be strong”, “Be courageous”, “Do not be afraid or discouraged?”
  • Will you let GOD fight your battle for you today?

Tuesday, October 14, 2014

Half-Hearted Effort

2 Chronicles 31: 20 This is what Hezekiah did throughout Judah, doing what was good and right and faithful before the Lord his God. 21 In everything that he undertook in the service of God’s temple and in obedience to the law and the commands, he sought his God and worked wholeheartedly. And so he prospered.


“I wonder how long this guy will last?” was the snippy question that crossed my mind as the new boss rolled in. He talked a lot about credentials so I ignored him and his commands. Anything he told me to do, I did it halfheartedly.

I mean the task was completed but “just enough” rather than excellent. His boss watched my halfhearted efforts and said to me, “you still have to work here even if he leaves.”

  • Sometimes I do things halfheartedly.
  • Sometimes my motivation is low and I don’t give full effort.
  • Sometimes I do just enough to say it’s done rather than seeking what needs to be done.

When I started putting my whole heart into something I could actually see things change. I didn’t really care about the promotions and the spoils, rather I was focused on doing whatever I was doing, with excellence. GOD saw this.

  • Whenever I worked heard and gave GOD credit, I was blessed tremendously.
  • Whenever I had a huge task in front of me and asked GOD to remove the mountain, I have been blessed tremendously.
  • Whenever I included GOD in my plans I have been blessed tremendously.

GOD wants my whole heart. This includes my fears, doubts and worries along with my excitement, drive and ambitions. HE wants me to see HE can handle it all and I can stand still and see the salvation of the LORD.

  • Are you serving GOD halfheartedly?
  • Have you run out of gas serving GOD?
  • Can you change the focus of serving GOD from getting something from HIM to simply serving?
  • Won’t you dedicate all your efforts to HIM today?

Monday, October 13, 2014

A Prayer for Everyone

2 Chronicles 30: 18 Although most of the many people who came from Ephraim, Manasseh, Issachar and Zebulun had not purified themselves, yet they ate the Passover, contrary to what was written. But Hezekiah prayed for them, saying, “May the Lord, who is good, pardon everyone 19 who sets their heart on seeking God—the Lord, the God of their ancestors—even if they are not clean according to the rules of the sanctuary.” 20 And the Lord heard Hezekiah and healed the people.


May GOD bless you today!

Friday, October 10, 2014

Start Somewhere

2 Chronicles 29: 16 The priests went into the sanctuary of the Lord to purify it. They brought out to the courtyard of the Lord’s temple everything unclean that they found in the temple of the Lord. The Levites took it and carried it out to the Kidron Valley. 

17 They began the consecration on the first day of the first month, and by the eighth day of the month they reached the portico of the Lord. For eight more days they consecrated the temple of the Lord itself, finishing on the sixteenth day of the first month.


“What should I wear?” was the first question in my mind as I had finally made up my mind to go to church. I hadn’t been there in years and I didn’t even know what time it started. I put on a new suit and drove around looking for a church. I had no destination in mind. Yes this was a very pitiful attempt.

I finally came to a church I remembered someone mentioning. There was a crowd standing outside talking with one another. I felt quite nervous about going in. I mean I don’t know these people and I really hadn’t been living a life worthy of church. “Should I go in?”

  • There were times where I thought I was too unclean to meet with GOD’s people.
  • There were times where I was too embarrassed to go to a place where GOD’s people met.
  • There were times where I could not admit I needed to meet with GOD’s people.

I felt my life was a mess and I couldn’t turn back now so I entered the building. I heard the music and the people got up singing in unison to music I didn’t know the words to. I felt out of place and wondered if I should return. BUT GOD intervened.

  • GOD said to me “Come as you are because I accept you.”
  • GOD said to me “In the middle of your sins I saved you.”
  • GOD said to me “MY grace is sufficient and I love you.”

I thought I was going to church to prove something to the people there and there were a few people who were there to measure my faith BUT GOD said ignore them. I started attending various churches regularly and my heart began seeking GOD.  I slowly began the longest journey of my life, the eternal walk with GOD.

  • Are you feeling distant from GOD?
  • Do you think you are too unclean for HIM?
  • Are you trying to hide your true feelings from HIM?
  • Can you seek HIM and let HIM guide you step by step to HIM?
  • Can you stop looking at the mess and look at GOD?

Thursday, October 9, 2014

Angry at GOD

2 Chronicles 28: 22 In his time of trouble King Ahaz became even more unfaithful to the Lord.


Bills mounting and car broken down, I quickly said these words “I’m not going to serve YOU anymore!” I mean what’s the use? It seems like when I try “GOD” things get worse. I wasn’t serving GOD anyway but this one Sunday I went to church at the request of friends.

The next day the sheriff knocked on my apartment door with a summons to appear in court for a variety of tickets. “Why serve a GOD who brings on nothing but trouble” I pouted.

  • When trouble comes I sometimes want to throw GOD out the window.
  • When trouble comes I sometimes want to blame GOD for all my ills.
  • When trouble comes I sometimes want to give up on GOD because I am not getting my way.

Trouble makes me irrational. When I see no way out and I use GOD as a “last resort” my mind cannot comprehend when HE doesn’t just swoop in and fix the situation to my liking. My doubting leads to pouting. BUT GOD understands.

  • GOD knows when I am weak and encourages me to turn back to HIM.
  • GOD knows when I feel like giving up and wants me to keep going with HIM.
  • GOD knows when I am frustrated, HE came into the world and faced more scrutiny than any human.

GOD understands how difficult life can be. HE knew the depth and breadth of HIS curse on the heavens and the earth. When HE said to Adam “You will now work from the ground you came” HE knew just how difficult it would be to produce fruit where it was once easy. BUT HIS grace abounds.

Before the curse GOD developed a rescue plan for all humans. JESUS volunteered to take the blame I cast on HIM even before HE made humans. HE hears my blaming words as if I were saying “YOU didn’t do enough for me” and forgives me anyway with these words “Forgive them for they know not what they do.” GOD is there with me and wants me to know HE loves me dearly.

  • Are you pouting at GOD?
  • Is there an obstacle in your way that seems insurmountable?
  • Can you trust GOD totally and allow HIM to take you through the trouble?
  • Will you praise HIM today for being GOD who loves you and has a plan for you?

Wednesday, October 8, 2014

Steady as It Goes

2 Chronicles 27:Jotham grew powerful because he walked steadfastly before the Lord his God.


“You need to meet the right people” a mentor told me when I inquired about being successful. I looked around and the “successful” people were drunkards, liars and thieves. One of my coworkers asked me to attend a very “visible” bible study that the “successful” people seemed to shun. What was I going to do?

  • Hanging around the crowd seems so satisfying at times.
  • Compromising my values seems like the right thing to do at times.
  • Desiring something to the extreme makes me want to join the wrong group at times.

When I woke up I actually remembered the mentors’ real statement. “You need to meet the right people within your values” is what he really said but not what I heard. I thought I had to change my value system and become something I was not created for. BUT GOD showed me something different.

  • GOD says “I will give you rest unto your soul.”
  • GOD says “MY burden is light.”
  • GOD says “I will lead you besides still waters.”

I chose the harder route and went to the Bible study. The Bible leader and I spoke to a person about CHRIST and he began crying and accepted HIM with zeal. This was a greater reward than promotions. But that’s not the end of the story. The CIO watched me and so did my bosses boss. They were followers of GOD and I didn’t know it. I was later promoted to areas I never would have believed.

  • Are you ready to throw in the towel with GOD?
  • Do you think you have to change or compromise your values?
  • Are you so desperate for money or success that you are thinking of giving up on GOD?
  • Can you choose GOD today?
  • Will you continue to walk down the path with GOD no matter how rocky it may seem?

Tuesday, October 7, 2014

The Roadmap to Success

2 Chronicles 26:He sought God during the days of Zechariah, who instructed him in the fear of God. As long as he sought the Lord, God gave him success.


“I am the best” is the attitude I carried into my meeting. After the third round of interviews my handler said “You did great, they would like to extend you an offer, but just hold tight we are on a hiring freeze that we should come out of soon.” The company never recovered and I was stuck.

I groused for a while and realized, maybe GOD wants me here. I began to warm up to the fact that I was going to spend my days in this little town. Months later I received a call, interviewed and got a job that moved me back to my large city.

  • My pride sometimes fools me into thinking the circumstance will go my way.
  • My pride sometimes dupes me into thinking the circumstance will go the way I thought.
  • My pride sometimes tricks me into thinking the circumstance will play out just as I thought.

Looking back on my life I realize my crystal ball is quite broken. I would look at my ability and jump into something, thinking I can control the outcome. BUT GOD says something different.

  • GOD has given me gifts but HE controls the outcome.
  • GOD has given me talents but HE controls the accomplishments.
  • GOD has given me abilities that only I can do bur HE controls whether I will be raised up or knocked down.

I can never say I am “self-made.” GOD made me and my capabilities are ZERO compared to HIS. No matter how clever, sharp or smooth I think I can be, GOD can knock me down with unforeseen circumstances. GOD can also raise me up just as fast. HE can take a moment of fear and doubt and bring the right people and circumstances in my life to raise me to heights I never would have known.

  • Are you pouting at GOD?
  • Do you think HE owes you something?
  • Can you release your will and ask GOD “what do YOU want me to do?”
  • Will you seek GOD without trying to get something from HIM today?

Monday, October 6, 2014

Fighting the Wrong Battle

2 Chronicles 25:He also hired a hundred thousand fighting men from Israel for a hundred talents of silver.
But a man of God came to him and said, “Your Majesty, these troops from Israel must not march with you, for the Lord is not with Israel—not with any of the people of Ephraim.Even if you go and fight courageously in battle, God will overthrow you before the enemy, for God has the power to help or to overthrow.”
Amaziah asked the man of God, “But what about the hundred talents I paid for these Israelite troops?”
The man of God replied, “The Lord can give you much more than that.”


I finally got time on the agenda after making a few calls. With presentation in hand I entered the stage. I had my facts ready and the information was set. I also had my local board prepped, but the usual suspects seemed very confident.

As I entered the stage I could tell something was different this time. When the barrage of poison questions hit me, I noticed my local board remaining silent as if to say “you are on your own.” I wasn’t supposed to be in that battle and I got pummeled.

·         There have been times where I jumped into battle when I should not have been fighting.
·         There have been times when I felt confident in my capabilities when I actually was not ready.
·         There have been times where I was blind to what was actually going on because of over confidence.

Confidence is a great quality to have but it can blind me if it is only coupled to my abilities. I can get puffed up by “my” success, thinking “I” accomplished whatever I accomplished. BUT GOD says different.

·         GOD says to me “Do not think of yourself more highly than you ought to.”
·         GOD says to me “Blessed are the meek for they shall inherit the earth.”
·         GOD says to me “Humble yourself before me and I will lift you up.”

My confidence has to be in the LORD not in my abilities. I can do nothing without HIM and I certainly cannot accomplish anything HE has not ordained. GOD has a plan that includes HIS prosperity, but it is in HIS time, HIS method and HIS style. Success to GOD may look very different to the world but HE never lets me down when I am humble before HIM.

·         Are you demanding GOD of something?
·         Do you feel you have the right to tell HIM what you need?
·         Can you stop complaining about HIM and humble yourself to HIS power and will?

·         Will you stop squirming out of your troubles and wait on the LORD for direction?

Thursday, October 2, 2014

Not Too Late to Prosper

2 Chronicles 24: 20 Then the Spirit of God came on Zechariah son of Jehoiada the priest. He stood before the people and said, “This is what God says: ‘Why do you disobey the Lord’s commands? You will not prosper. Because you have forsaken the Lord, he has forsaken you.’”


It seemed like everything was going absolutely wrong in my life at this time. My old jalopy was on the fritz again, and I was stuck in “this” stupid town, alone. I went to the mailbox and saw the envelope with the word “overdue” stamped on the outside.  I was behind on credit card payments.

One of the “old” ladies who lived in my building came up to me and asked me the strangest question. “What church do you go to?” assumptively she asked. “I haven’t found one” I said knowing I wasn’t even looking for one.

  • There are times where I have tried to do life on my own.
  • There are times where I think I can handle life by myself.
  • There are times where I mistook being busy as being productive and I got exhausted getting nowhere.

I was working as hard as I could and things weren’t changing. I mean the car couldn’t have broken down at the worst time. I took a deep breath and went to church. I listened to the sermon and the pastor spoke about the book “Revelation of JESUS.” This perked my interest so I decided to return the next week.

Before long I was attending regularly and the pastor asked the question “Is there anyone here who would like to rededicate their life back to CHRIST?” Something within me said “stay seated” but fortunately for me I got up anyway. I was tired of trying so hard and getting nowhere.

I don’t remember any magic remedies or potions, but soon I found myself giving to people instead of holding back to pay my bills. Soon I wasn’t lonely anymore and wouldn’t you know it, my bills were paid off. The impossible was made possible.

  • GOD says to me, “It is never too late to turn to your ways back to the LORD.”
  • GOD says to me, “Stop trying to be GOD and follow ME.”
  • GOD says to me, “I AM worthy to be praised in the middle of a crisis.”

There is no emergency with GOD. HE knows exactly what I am going through each and every moment. HE wants me to trust HIS plan and follow HIS ways first, and then I will prosper.

  • Are you in a situation where you cannot see the end?
  • Do you think your situation is impossible for GOD?
  • Can you slow down a minute, take a deep breath and ask “what is GOD doing in my life right now?”
  • If you are serving GOD, then can you check if you have judgmental words coming from your lips?

Wednesday, October 1, 2014

Choose This Day

2 Chronicles 23: 16 Jehoiada then made a covenant that he, the people and the king would be the Lord’s people.


I had made it. I was on the golf course with the bunch! “Want a cigar?” they asked me. “No Thanks” I replied. “How about a drink?” another nudged me. “No Thanks” I replied again. “We’re going out later to ‘catch some curvy sights’ want to come? “No Thanks” I said. And as soon as I got in “the club” I was out.

That was my third strike and I was not invited to their reindeer games any longer. “Maybe I should rethink my stance” I thought to myself.

Choosing GOD can sometimes seem pretty harsh. I mean, can’t I have a little “fun?” Some of the people who have chosen to follow GOD seem a bit boring and judgmental I thought to myself. BUT GOD sees something different.

  • GOD sees what sin does to me.
  • GOD understands how sin blinds me.
  • GOD loves me too much to let sin run my life because HE has blessings for me.

GOD wants me to give up sin a little at a time without judging people around me. HE wants me to choose HIS path instead of the shiny wide road that leads me away from HIM. Sometimes the choice can seem crazy to everyone around me. It may mean I chart a harder course instead of the easy one to fame and riches.

  • GOD says “Choose this day who you will serve” to me.
  • GOD says “I stand at the door and knock” to me.
  • GOD says “Learn of ME.”

As I gave up yet another sinful desire, I sighed and started on GOD’s path. It seemed barren and fruitless at first. In fact the road was harder. BUT GOD blessed me more and more each day! HE is my rock and my salvation and I am now excited to shout HIS name!

  • Are you being tempted to do something that is not of GOD?
  • Do you think the road to GOD is too harsh?
  • Can you start following GOD without looking for the gifts and trinkets of the world?
  • Won’t you stop seeking fame and start pointing to GOD?