Thursday, July 21, 2016

Standing on My Own

Ezekiel 18: 20 The one who sins is the one who will die. The child will not share the guilt of the parent, nor will the parent share the guilt of the child. The righteousness of the righteous will be credited to them, and the wickedness of the wicked will be charged against them.


30 “Therefore, you Israelites, I will judge each of you according to your own ways, declares the Sovereign Lord. Repent! Turn away from all your offenses; then sin will not be your downfall. 31 Rid yourselves of all the offenses you have committed, and get a new heart and a new spirit. Why will you die, people of Israel? 32 For I take no pleasure in the death of anyone, declares the Sovereign Lord. Repent and live!


Watching the consequence of sin play out, I said to myself “I will never do that!” I heard of neighbors who had been shot or jailed because of theft. I watched executives who were fired because of porn or sex in the office. Then one day I realized, someone may be watching me and saying the same.

  • At one time I used to point out sin in others.
  • At one time I used to see the wrong people did.
  • At one time I used to say “Look at that person and the awful thing they did.”

Talking about other people is an easy way to get the spotlight off of me. I mean it’s easier to tell people what’s wrong with “that” person than to admit my own sin. BUT GOD knows better.

  • GOD says to me “All have sinned and fall short of MY glory.”
  • GOD says to me “Confess your sins and believe in your heart that JESUS died for your sins and you will be saved.”
  • GOD says to me “Get a new heart and a new SPIRIT simply by turning to ME.”

I can no longer blame someone else for the sins they commit. I can’t even blame them if their sin affected me. All I can do is confess my sins to the LIVING GOD and praise HIM for my forgiveness. My sin is my sin and I need to stand on my own and ask GOD for HIS favor.

  • Are you blaming someone for the situation you are in?
  • Do you think it it their sin that caused you to be where you are?
  • Can you let go of their sin and look at you own heart?
  • Will you confess your sins to GOD and allow HIM to cleanse you of all unrighteousness?

Wednesday, July 20, 2016

Being Raised Up

Ezekiel 17: 22 “‘This is what the Sovereign Lord says: I myself will take a shoot from the very top of a cedar and plant it; I will break off a tender sprig from its topmost shoots and plant it on a high and lofty mountain. 23 On the mountain heights of Israel I will plant it; it will produce branches and bear fruit and become a splendid cedar. Birds of every kind will nest in it; they will find shelter in the shade of its branches. 24 All the trees of the forest will know that I the Lord bring down the tall tree and make the low tree grow tall. I dry up the green tree and make the dry tree flourish.
“‘I the Lord have spoken, and I will do it.’”


Looking back I can see that it was GOD who raised me up to places I would never have dreamt. I wasn’t super poor but I do remember eating a stale bread mustard sandwich because we had run out of groceries. “I want to help people” was my fleeting thought back then. Years later as I flew with the top executives on the corporate jet I forgot about the “mustard sandwich” people because I was under tremendous pressure to produce for the company.

  • When GOD raises me up, it is for HIS purpose not mine.
  • When GOD raises me up, it is to tell people about HIM not pander to those who could care less about HIM.
  • When GOD raises me up, it is to help those who need help rather than filling the pockets of the greedy.

Tall trees are cut down and never remembered BUT GOD can take an unassuming shoot like myself and raise it up to places unimagined. HE wants people to see HIM so HE raises up people who are willing to proclaim HIS name. Caution should be take not to forget HIM in the process. GOD wants me to remember HIM daily and to live my life with purpose.

Stripping me of my admiration of money, GOD sends me to places where HE leads me.  HE gives me the words to say and the people to hear them. One person is enough, but for some reason HE provides me with plenty to pray for and watch over. GOD raises me up to do HIS will. By the way, JESUS is the tree in the story!

  • Are you climbing the ladder of success?
  • Why do you want to be on top?
  • Can you take GOD with you and tell HIS message to your huge audience?
  • Will you hide GOD or shout HIM when HE raises you up?
  • Can you stop looking at money and practice speaking about GOD today? 

Tuesday, July 19, 2016

Ashamed and Humiliated

Ezekiel 16: 62 So I will establish my covenant with you, and you will know that I am the Lord. 63 Then, when I make atonement for you for all you have done, you will remember and be ashamed and never again open your mouth because of your humiliation, declares the Sovereign Lord.


Phone call after phone call made the day seem full of energy. I could handle it because my lavish company car had the first “hands free” gadget on the market. As I zipped along, dishing out advice I could feel the power of “my” title. When the title was stripped away along with the car, I felt a loss of self-worth. I was ashamed and humiliated.

  • There have been many times I have placed my self-worth in the wrong places.
  • There have been many times I have desired to be worth something to the wrong people.
  • There have been many times I have casted my pearls before swine in order to feel like something.

Making it to the top made the fall even further. I mean for a while I receive no phone calls and I as the one who sought after advice. Wandering and pleading was new for me, but after a while I got used to the new desert location. I could hear GOD for a change rather than the incessant ringing of my phone.

  • GOD said to me “I will establish MY covenant with you.”
  • GOD said to me “I will enable you to know that I AM the LORD.”
  • GOD said to me “I will make atonement for you and all you have done and you will remember and be ashamed and never again open your mouth because of your humiliation.”

Boasting about wealth and title soon disappeared. After a while I found myself speaking again, this time it was for something extremely valuable, namely the LORD. HE restored me to speak on HIS behalf and enable me to talk about HIS SON to those HE sent me. GOD made atonement for my blindness through the death burial and resurrection of the living JESUS. I am indebted to HIM.

  • Are you ashamed about where you are?
  • Are you demands not being met?
  • Can you stop demanding and start confessing to the LORD?
  • Will you change your ways and turn your words into GOD’s words?

Monday, July 18, 2016

Being Useful

Ezekiel 15: The word of the Lord came to me: “Son of man, how is the wood of a vine different from that of a branch from any of the trees in the forest? Is wood ever taken from it to make anything useful? Do they make pegs from it to hang things on? And after it is thrown on the fire as fuel and the fire burns both ends and chars the middle, is it then useful for anything? If it was not useful for anything when it was whole, how much less can it be made into something useful when the fire has burned it and it is charred?


With lack of care, I tossed the box of paper to whatever location it landed. I did not appreciate the job, but I liked getting a paycheck. Loading and unloading a truck was not my idea of a job. In fact any job at that time was not my idea of a job.

  • There were times that I did not care.
  • There were times that I felt everyone owed me something.
  • There were times that I looked down on where I was even when I was not worthy of being where I was.

Talk about being useless to the organization. I wanted to hide from “work” as much as possible. In fact, whenever someone was ready to goof off, I was there with my goof shoes on. I was getting paid to unload trucks and did not appreciate one minute. GOD had to show me something about myself.

  • GOD said to me “Like a door on its hinges, a lazy man turns back and forth on his bed.”
  • GOD said to me “Lazy people are too lazy to lift the food from their plate to their mouth.”
  • GOD said to me “Lazy people think they are seven times smarter than the people who really have good sense.”

My laziness was useless to the company and sometimes my laziness crept into my relationship with GOD. I mean sometimes I was too tired to pray or too busy to serve or too broke to give. After a while I took an inventory and was doing everything for myself and nothing for GOD. In fact, GOD was dead last in my life and I was on top.

GOD wants me to put HIM first and others second before I get to myself. HE wants me to hold HIM with the highest regard and ask “What would YOU like me to do?” on a regular basis. My life is definitely HIS to do as HE wishes. I should be thankful on a daily basis.

  • Are you grousing and complaining?
  • Are you sick and tired of where you are?
  • Can you stop complaining and start appreciating where GOD has you?
  • Will you allow GOD to work in your life by asking HIM where HE wants you?

Friday, July 15, 2016

Consoled by Your Children’s Actions

Ezekiel 14: 21 “For this is what the Sovereign Lord says: How much worse will it be when I send against Jerusalem my four dreadful judgments—sword and famine and wild beasts and plague—to kill its men and their animals! 22 Yet there will be some survivors—sons and daughters who will be brought out of it. They will come to you, and when you see their conduct and their actions, you will be consoled regarding the disaster I have brought on Jerusalem—every disaster I have brought on it. 23 You will be consoled when you see their conduct and their actions, for you will know that I have done nothing in it without cause, declares the Sovereign Lord.”


Raising children is no small task. I mean watching them from infantile frailty all the way to adulthood can be quite tenuous. Every cut, bruise or ailment cuts me to the bone. Sometimes I question GOD as to why they have to go through turmoil.

  • Sometimes I wonder “Why the pain?”
  • Sometimes I ponder “Why the turmoil?
  • Sometimes I contemplate “Why the difficulty in life?”

Even before I had children, I dreaded the thought of bringing a life into the world as it existed. Killing, hatred and disease seemed like a dreadful place to want to have more people grow up. BUT GOD said something different.

  • GOD said to me “Your children are MINE and I need them to do something that only they can do.”
  • GOD said to me “I will enable them to survive and you will be consoled by their conduct.”
  • GOD said to me “I hold all life in MY hand to those who believe in ME, no one can pluck them out of MY hand.”

GOD is the deliverer. Only HE can bring people out of difficulty. No doctor, lawyer, or financial institution can save one soul, BUT GOD can and is willing! HE throws my sins away and saves me from calamity and HE blesses my family with compassionate protection. I can only thank GOD for HIS continual fortification.

  • Are your kids going through something>?
  • Are you worried about someone else and feel helpless?
  • Can you give your worries to the LORD by telling HIM how you feel?
  • Will you ask GOD to help the part of you that does not believe?
  • Will you praise GOD today in the middle of your thoughts?

Thursday, July 14, 2016

Negative or Positive

Ezekiel 13: 22 Because you disheartened the righteous with your lies, when I had brought them no grief, and because you encouraged the wicked not to turn from their evil ways and so save their lives, 23 therefore you will no longer see false visions or practice divination. I will save my people from your hands. And then you will know that I am the Lord.’”


It was a small still voice that told me to encourage this particular person so I did. That person desperately needed to hear the words of encouragement. The next day there was a preacher who said some words in a way that I did not agree. “I wonder if I need to tell that person what they did wrong?” was the first thought that came to mind.

  • Sometimes I want to discourage the righteous people with “my” opinion.
  • Sometimes I want to dishearten the righteous people with “my” thinking.
  • Sometimes I want to disagree with the righteous people because I want “my” voice heard.

When I want the spotlight so badly I may try to argue “my” point or fight to be heard rather than being led by GOD. This quarrelsome behavior causes discouragement rather than building people up for the LORD, meanwhile I have not gone to the people who “do” need to hear encouragement to change their ways. GOD wants me to make a choice.

  • GOD wants me to choose my words carefully and not twist HIS words into mine.
  • GOD wants me to stay away from discouraging words by seeking the best for people.
  • GOD wants me to encourage people to change their ways and focus on GOD rather than looking at me.

Negativity is all around, from television to work to neighbors, it is hard pressed to hear an encouraging word. BUT GOD says “encourage people to follow ME.” GOD is truly amazing, I feel encouraged by HIS word.

  • Are you speaking negativity?
  • Do your words tear people down or build people up?
  • Can you stop using your poisonous negative words and build “that” person up?
  • Will you go out and encourage a person to follow GOD today?

Wednesday, July 13, 2016

It Will Happen Soon

Ezekiel 12: 26 The word of the Lord came to me: 27 “Son of man, the Israelites are saying, ‘The vision he sees is for many years from now, and he prophesies about the distant future.’

28 “Therefore say to them, ‘This is what the Sovereign Lord says: None of my words will be delayed any longer; whatever I say will be fulfilled, declares the Sovereign Lord.’”


“Pack your bags and be in [insert some distant city] on Monday” were the words spoken to me is a hasty decision. It was Friday and in one moment my life changed by the decision of a company. There was no time to think, just move.

  • Sometimes situations happen quickly.
  • Sometimes life changes rapidly.
  • Sometimes the unexpected pops up when I am not ready.

Complacency had me relax in my position. I thought I could be in one place forever. I usually put in a nice effort and was satisfied that I contributed value, but the change came unexpectedly. GOD does the same. Many situations, bad or good, happen rapidly. How can I be ready for them?

  • GOD says to me “Take up your cross daily” meaning I need to pay attention to HIS salvation of me on a daily basis.
  • GOD says to me “Pray without ceasing” meaning stay in continual communication with GOD because anything can happen quickly.
  • GOD says to me “Put oil in your lamp” meaning be prepared for MY return at a moment’s notice.

Surprise is not in GOD’s vocabulary. HE knows what I am going to go through way before it happens, but I am blind to the timing and get surprised many times. Since I can’t go through life fearing the next moment, GOD wants me to seek peace by paying attention to HIM as often as I can. HE says “MY yoke is easy and MY burden is light.”

Instead of constantly thinking on disaster, I can think about GOD. Whatsoever things are true, whatsoever things are honest, whatsoever things are just, whatsoever things are pure, whatsoever things are lovely, whatsoever things are of good report; if there be any virtue, and if there be any praise, think on these things. I can find peace knowing anything can happen.

  • Are you worried?
  • Are many thoughts flooding your mind?
  • Can you relax for a moment and allow GOD to provide you with comfort?
  • Will you let HIS timing happen while you sit back and relax?

Tuesday, July 12, 2016

All Taken Care of

Ezekiel 11: 19 I will give them an undivided heart and put a new spirit in them; I will remove from them their heart of stone and give them a heart of flesh. 20 Then they will follow my decrees and be careful to keep my laws. They will be my people, and I will be their God.


When the storm of life hit me again I started praying more and attending church more. When the storm subsided, so did my prayer and church attendance. I figured “GOD won’t mind.” I mean I am not doing anything “bad” I am simply too busy for church right now.
  • Sometimes my heart is divided between world and GOD.
  • Sometimes my heart is as hard as a rock and I cannot hear GOD.
  • Sometimes my heart is not focused on following GOD because I followed HIM yesterday and that should be sufficient.

Having a divided, stony selfish heart keeps me from reaching my true destiny namely being related to GOD. Doublemindedness and lukewarm behavior are things GOD despises. HE does not want me to dwell on the fence and pander to groups who will never follow HIM. GOD wants me to be different but how can I change?
  • GOD said to me “I will give you an undivided heart.”
  • GOD said to me “I will remove your stony heart and give you a heart of flesh.”
  • GOD said to me “I will be your GOD.”

In every one of those statements GOD said “I will.” This means I do not have to do anything but be willing to let HIM do what HE has to do. I do not have to be better than the “that” good person over there rather I need to simply allow HIM to modify my heart the way HE wants to.

Following GOD on my own is extremely hard. I mean all the reading, studying, praying and believing can be exhausting! BUT GOD makes following HIM easier when HE places HIS SPIRIT inside me. HE renews my strength daily and tells me to let HIM do the work while I watch HIM. I can truly praise HIM for who HE is.

  • Do you think you need to clean yourself up?
  • Do you feel obligated to “do” more for GOD instead of just “being” for GOD?
  • Can you allow HIM to change you divided heart?
  • Will you let GOD remove your stony heart and replace it with a heart of flesh?
  • Will you let HIM place a new SPIRIT in you today?

Monday, July 11, 2016


Ezekiel 10: Then the glory of the Lord rose from above the cherubim and moved to the threshold of the temple. The cloud filled the temple, and the court was full of the radiance of the glory of the Lord.


Yesterday as I was driving down the highway I noticed the setting sun. This time the sky looked particularly strange as some of the clouds seemed to cast a glow as if they were on fire. I could not see the sun itself because of obstacles like trees and buildings, then I rounded a corner and there it was, bright, glowing and radiant!

  • The setting sun is no match for GOD’s glory.
  • An erupting volcano is no match to GOD’s power.
  • A violent wind is no match to GOD’s infinite presence.

GOD should be pondered on a regular basis. Through rough storms and quiet streams, GOD should appear in my mind as the creator with infinite wisdom. HIS concern over me is included in this incredible artwork called life. HE opens my eyes to a new day and calls out to me to see HIM, hear HIM and be with HIM.

GOD is almighty, GOD is all knowing. GOD is all seeing. GOD is.

  • Can you see GOD?
  • Have you heard HIM today?
  • Will you ask HIM to speak to you today?
  • Will you let HIM show you HIS glory?

Friday, July 8, 2016

Hidden Sin

Ezekiel 9: He answered me, “The sin of the people of Israel and Judah is exceedingly great; the land is full of bloodshed and the city is full of injustice. They say, ‘The Lord has forsaken the land; the Lord does not see.’ 10 So I will not look on them with pity or spare them, but I will bring down on their own heads what they have done.”


Being a thief, peeping Tom, a liar and a greedy vengeful person was never something I wanted to admit to anyone. In fact these sins were things I was supposed to carry to my grave without anyone knowing just how rotten I was. I was supposed to put on my “church face” and shine my halo daily, meanwhile letting the decay inside grow larger and larger.

  • When I try to hide my sin it only multiplies.
  • When I try to bury my sin it only comes to the surface.
  • When I try to pretend everything is well with my soul, weird spiritual dilemmas pop up.

GOD was furious with those who had reached a point where they admitted nothing and blamed everyone else around them. HIS chosen people left HIS protection and turned to asking wooden idols questions, knowing there would never be someone to say “Your action is wrong.” Sin was now available without restraint and now what used to be hidden was now blatant. GOD wants something different from me.

  • GOD wants me to admit publicly that I have sinned.
  • GOD wants me to tell people about HIS grace and mercy because I admitted my sins.
  • GOD wants me to believe in HIS grace through HIS SON, knowing that ALL my sins have been forgiven.

I can never be good enough or stop sinning long enough to win GOD over. So what’s the point in being good? GOD loves it when I turn away from that sin or when I help others focus on HIM. HE provides me with opportunities to bear fruit on a daily basis, all I have to do is reach out and accept HIS calling to admit what I have done so others will do the same.

Admitting sin takes the spotlight off of me and places it on GOD. HE blesses me for pointing people to HIM.

  • What are you hiding?
  • Are you hiding a lot?
  • Can you stop hiding and start admitting something small and work your way up to what you feel is large?
  • Will you reach the point where you know that all sin is the same?
  • Can you accept the gift that JESUS gave you by dying for your sins and taking on your consequences?

Thursday, July 7, 2016

Being Jealous

Ezekiel 8: He stretched out what looked like a hand and took me by the hair of my head. The Spirit lifted me up between earth and heaven and in visions of God he took me to Jerusalem, to the entrance of the north gate of the inner court, where the idol that provokes to jealousy stood. And there before me was the glory of the God of Israel, as in the vision I had seen in the plain.

Then he said to me, “Son of man, look toward the north.” So I looked, and in the entrance north of the gate of the altar I saw this idol of jealousy.


“This guy really bugs me” I thought to myself. I mean he is loved by management and he never seems to have to do any work. He was always going out to lunch with them and they seemed to work his name into conversations I was having with them.

  • Sometimes I get jealous of what someone has.
  • Sometimes I get jealous of the position someone else is placed in.
  • Sometimes I get jealous of someone else’s success.

When they asked me to help this guy, I dragged my feet. I mean “you are the darling, do it yourself” I thought. Little did I know, management was trying to bring me into the fold. They wanted me to get along with this guy and all I had to do was help him. My jealousy blinded me and everyone lost.

  • GOD says to me “I detest jealousy but I love a helping heart.”
  • GOD says to me “I cannot stand jealousy but I love self-sacrifice.”
  • GOD says to me “I loathe jealousy but I love kindness, thoughtfulness and gracefulness.”

Appreciation cannot exist when jealousy is present. Jealousy says to GOD, “YOU did not put me in the right place or YOU did not make me correctly or even worse YOU made that person better than me, do something about it.” Looking at someone else is the problem. My relationship should only be between me and GOD. In other words I should focus on doing what pleases HIM and let HIM handle the affairs of others.

Satan was jealous of GOD’s position and GOD kicked him out of heaven. When I show jealousy I am reminding GOD of a part of Satan HE despises. Pride stems from jealousy which causes missed opportunities for love, peace and enjoyment. GOD wants me to give my jealousy to HIM.

  • Are you jealous of someone?
  • Do you see what someone has and feel like you want that?
  • Can you take your jealous desires to GOD and ask HIM what HE wants for you?
  • Will you look at the benefits of that person instead of what you are jealous over?
  • Will you fill your heart with appreciation today?

Wednesday, July 6, 2016

Saved by Silver

Ezekiel 7: 19 “‘They will throw their silver into the streets,
    and their gold will be treated as a thing unclean.
Their silver and gold
    will not be able to deliver them
    in the day of the Lord’s wrath.
It will not satisfy their hunger
    or fill their stomachs,
    for it has caused them to stumble into sin.


Broke was the word that best described my situation. It seemed like there were more bills than money. Weekly I would get yet another call from a creditor and it seemed like I was moving backwards instead of forwards. “If I just had a little more money I could relax” I thought to myself.

  • There have been times when I really wanted more money.
  • There have been times when I craved more cash.
  • There have been times when I wanted more stuff but could not afford it.

During this “broke” time I groused and my smile was seldom seen. I mean my life was a shamble right? Wrong! My dependence on cash made my life like a thermometer, hot when I had it, cold when it was gone. What was I supposed to do?

  • GOD says to me “The love of money is the root of all kinds of evil.”
  • GOD says to me “Put your trust in ME and all will go well with you.”
  • GOD says to me “Trust in the LORD with all your ways and all your heart and lean not unto your own understanding.”

When I calmed down I realized I had never missed a meal and I was living in a semi-paid for apartment. My job was difficult but I was getting a steady paycheck. I truly had a lot to praise GOD about. “You mean I can depend on GOD for my worries?” I thought to myself. This brought a genuine smile to my face. I felt heaviness fall from my shoulders. GOD wants me to smile in the middle of the storm without depending on cash or my wits. HE does care.

  • Have you placed too much emphasis on money?
  • Do you spend an excessive amount of time worrying about money?
  • Will you stop placing so much value on money and start valuing GOD?

Tuesday, July 5, 2016

Compassion in Anger

Ezekiel 6: Your people will fall slain among you, and you will know that I am the Lord.

“‘But I will spare some, for some of you will escape the sword when you are scattered among the lands and nations.’”


GOD spared a remnant when HE was highly upset at HIS people. I mean at one point HE wanted to wipe HIS humans off the face of the earth. Their claims that HE does not exist or that HIS efforts are futile angered HIM but not so much. It was the things they built with their own hands and worshipped that fueled the most anger in GOD. Not only had GOD been pushed out the picture, HIS people made idols to replace HIM.

  • GOD wants me to be creative, yet give HIM the credit for my talents.
  • GOD wants me to be innovative, yet praise HIM for my imagination.
  • GOD wants me to be inspirational as long as I am inspiring others to follow HIM.

In the middle of GOD’s anger HE decided to show some compassion. HE allowed a few people to escape HIS wrath. HE expected them to tell the story of the difficult times so people would turn their blinded eyes back to HIM. I have no idea how HE chooses who would escape, but I am glad HE does. GOD chose me to escape HIS wrath and I have been grateful since!

  • Are you building something that you worship?
  • Do you fight to get heard and recognized?
  • Will you step out of the limelight and allow GOD to be center-stage?
  • Will you tell people about HIS story?

Friday, July 1, 2016

When the Dust Settles

Ezekiel 5: 13 “Then my anger will cease and my wrath against them will subside, and I will be avenged. And when I have spent my wrath on them, they will know that I the Lord have spoken in my zeal.


Feeling rather smug I went into the office of my new boss. This was a temporary situation because he was actually my boss’s boss, but my boss was fired and I was quite glad. He said to me “Why didn’t you help him?” I was actually shocked at the question. It took about a year or so to win his confidence back. It was a rough year.

  • There were times when I have made people mad.
  • There were times when I was the one who brought on anger.
  • There were times when I was blind and deserved the wrath I got.

I couldn’t say “What did I do to bring on this?” because it was my “lack of doing” that brought on his anger. I had to change my attitude immediately otherwise I was going to be next in line to get ousted. After a year wrath, I definitely knew who the boss was.

  • GOD has brought on situations in my life to show me HE is GOD.
  • GOD has shown me HIS wrath and I definitely know HE is GOD.
  • GOD has put stumbling block in front of me to show me HE is GOD.

While the situation was difficult, it was a great learning experience. My character was shown to be low and I had to improve it with sustained activity. It took a while but I won him over, to an extent. He approved my promotion and I could see his wrath subside. GOD has done the same in many instances.

HE has taken me though ups and downs to show me HE is in charge. HE wants me to see HIM as more than that of a wish giver but the ONE who is in charge. HE is supreme in all of HIS glorious movements. GOD is above all!

  • Are you going through something?
  • Have you asked “Why me?”
  • Will you stop sulking and turn your eyes to GOD immediately?
  • Will you seek HIS peace today?