Thursday, September 29, 2016

Long Return

Hosea 3: For the Israelites will live many days without king or prince, without sacrifice or sacred stones, without ephod or household gods. Afterward the Israelites will return and seek the Lord their God and David their king. They will come trembling to the Lord and to his blessings in the last days.


Unprepared was probably the nicest word I heard about my presentation. I tried to “wing it” but the audience saw through my feeble attempt. With a scowl, many in the department turned their backs to me. “How can I recover?” I asked. “Your reputation is in the toilet right now but it can be repaired, as long as you don’t kill anyone” someone said.

  • There are times when I feel I am on the outs with people.
  • There are times when I feel I am worthless to others.
  • There are times when I have actually blown it and have to straighten up and return to where I started.

“How long will it take to rebuild my reputation” I asked, thinking maybe two or three weeks. “One year, more or less” was the deadly answer I had to accept. After working extra hard to be prepared, amongst other things, I was able to rebuild my reputation. It took eighteen months and it did feel long.

  • GOD says to me “Return back to ME and I WILL restore you.”
  • GOD says to me “I WILL raise you up when you turn your ways to ME.”
  • GOD says to me “I AM the way”

I find GOD to be different. When I “blow it” GOD does not treat me the same as humans. GOD allows me to turn back to HIM daily and pours out HIS forgiveness in ways I cannot explain. HE washes me from head to toe and sets me on HIS righteous path. Sometimes the trials go longer than I would like, but I know HE is with me every step.

  • Have you made a huge mistake?
  • Do you think there is no way to return?
  • Can you stop blaming everyone around you and look to GOD for help?
  • Will you turn your face back to GOD and allow HIM to restore you in HIS time and HIS way?

Wednesday, September 28, 2016

Response to the Plea

Hosea 2: 21 “In that day I will respond,”
    declares the Lord
“I will respond to the skies,
    and they will respond to the earth;
22 and the earth will respond to the grain,
    the new wine and the olive oil,
    and they will respond to Jezreel.
23 I will plant her for myself in the land;
    I will show my love to the one I called ‘Not my loved one.’
I will say to those called ‘Not my people,’ ‘You are my people’;
    and they will say, ‘You are my God.’”


Some days I wondered if GOD was even listening to me. I mean some trials lasted longer than others. “Where are YOU?” I would cry out, only to hear silence and remain in my present state.

  • There have been times when I have wondered if GOD is listening.
  • There have been times when I thought GOD seems to not care.
  • There have been times when I have thought GOD must be punishing me because things are not going the way I want them to in the time I want them to.

Looking back on my doubtful thinking I was venting at the one who put me in the situation in the first place. I did not know what HE was doing or why, I only knew I wanted out of the trial and into something ”better.” BUT GOD said something to calm me down.

  • GOD says “I see you.”
  • GOD says “There will come a day when I WILL respond.”
  • GOD says “I WILL say you are MY people and you will say YOU are my GOD.”

Throughout my waiting period I can see GOD was there sustaining me, yet HE was growing me to become patient and more understanding of those who are going through circumstances. HE wants me to slow down rather than speeding up so I will not miss those around me.

GOD also wants me to have the faith to keep pressing forward and to plea with HIM daily. I will keep my measure of faith HE has given me and place my total trust in HIM. HE is my GOD and I am HIS.

  • Are you still in a trial that has been going on for a while?
  • Do you want out of the trial but it seems to still linger?
  • Can you praise GOD for what HE is doing to sustain you?
  • Will you stop feeling ashamed and speak about GOD boldly?

Tuesday, September 27, 2016

Not by Force

Hosea 1: Yet I will show love to Judah; and I will save them—not by bow, sword or battle, or by horses and horsemen, but I, the Lord their God, will save them.”


In a tiny tantrum I said “I will not serve YOU GOD!” At that time things were just not going well at all. The wheels were flying off of school and my car was falling apart. After graduating I remained in my pouting state, meanwhile my loneliness was increasing and the pressures of life were mounting. Finally, I was in a place where I had nowhere to turn. “GOD, please help me I muttered pitifully.”

  • Sometimes I do not think GOD is the answer.
  • Sometimes I blame GOD for my problems.
  • Sometimes I look at GOD as something I do rather than someone to be with.

When I tried to leave GOD it’s as if HE said “Okay” and let me go on my merry way. I did not communicate with HIM nor HE with me. BUT GOD was extremely graceful and merciful and I did not know it.

  • GOD watched over me in spite of my tantrum.
  • GOD protected me in spite of my pouting.
  • GOD delivered me in spite of my lack of service, communication or giving.

I did not manipulate GOD in any way, yet HE chose to deliver me from my trials. HE opened my eyes to how immature I was truly acting and showed me just how full of anger and rage my heart was. HE emptied it and allowed it to dry out for a while, then HE filled it up with HIS HOLY SPIRIT which gives me different eyes.

GOD enables me to see HIM in the middle of situations. HE opens my eyes to allow me to see HE is fighting the battle, not me. HE protects me daily and grows my faith in HIM. I trust HIS plan and get excited for what HE is doing!

  • Are you throwing a tantrum right now?
  • Do you feel you are drowning with no way out?
  • Can you stop squirming and slow down enough to hear GOD’s small still voice?
  • Will you open your heart’s mouth and shout to GOD “I need YOU?”

Shining Bright

Daniel 12: Multitudes who sleep in the dust of the earth will awake: some to everlasting life, others to shame and everlasting contempt. Those who are wise will shine like the brightness of the heavens, and those who lead many to righteousness, like the stars for ever and ever.


“You have the prettiest grass on the block” was a saying that puffed up my head. I am glad someone noticed! I mean I spent hours trying to keep weeds out and have each blade grow to the same length with the same dark green color.

  • There are things I spend hours on.
  • There are things I work hard at.
  • There are things I take a lot of time doing that I wonder if they have meaning.

One day there will be a time when everything I currently do will not matter. I mean the bush that I trimmed so nicely or the grass I cut to perfection will one day be gone. While I spent hours toiling over the care of these elements, I wonder how much value it has.

  • GOD says to me “There will come a day and it is coming soon when MY SON will return.”
  • GOD says to me “One day the dead in CHRIST will arise at the shout of the Angel.”
  • GOD says to me “Time is short, lead many back to me while there is still time.”

While there is no harm in cleaning, repairing and pruning I must notice the amount of time I spend doing these things. I mean is there someone who needs to hear an encouraging word near me? Am I open to guiding someone to a better place, namely GOD?

I should strike a balance between work, play and ministry. Quite honestly, ministry should be included in my work and play. I truly should be thinking about bringing someone to GOD on a daily basis, constantly asking HIM for the right words that they may hear. My purpose is to bring people to righteousness, only to shine like a star in GOD’s time.

  • Are you busy?
  • How much time are you spending doing what you are doing?
  • Can you take a moment to pray for someone?
  • Will you reach out to someone with the gift of compassion?
  • Can you ask GOD for the right words to bring someone to HIS righteousness?

Friday, September 23, 2016

Purpose in the Stumble

Daniel 11: 33 “Those who are wise will instruct many, though for a time they will fall by the sword or be burned or captured or plundered. 34 When they fall, they will receive a little help, and many who are not sincere will join them. 35 Some of the wise will stumble, so that they may be refined, purified and made spotless until the time of the end, for it will still come at the appointed time.


Pulling up on furniture enabled me to walk as a toddler, but of course I fell only to try again. Riding near grass was my plan anticipating the inevitable fall as I learned how to ride my bike; of course I fell only to try again. Observing others, driving slow and practicing was my plan, but when I had my first accident, I learned to watch my blind spot so I had to try again.

  • There have been times in my life when I have fallen down hard.
  • There have been times in my life when I have crashed to the ground.
  • There have been times in my life when I have stumbled.

Sometimes I felt like staying down. I mean, what is the purpose of getting back up when I could be knocked back down? What’s the purpose of falling down anyway? Can’t I just stay up all the time?

  • GOD says to me “I WILL be with you when you fall.”
  • GOD says to me “In your weakness MY strength shines bright.”
  • GOD says to me “You will have sin, but MY faith is everlasting.”

Stumbling and falling are not meant to crush my spirit. Quite the contrary, GOD wants me to recognize my need for HIM. HE allows me to stumble and fall and tumble down to the ground only to reach HIS mighty hand out to pick me up again and again. After the fall I rise with HIS help, this time a little wiser and stronger.

GOD purifies me and makes me spotless with each fall. HE wants me to get back up and endure the race called life.

  • Have you stumbled in life?
  • Have you fallen to the point where you do not feel like getting back up?
  • Can you see that GOD needs you to get back up so you can reach “that” person HE has appointed to you?
  • Will you ask GOD to give you strength today?

Thursday, September 22, 2016

Words of Encouragement

Daniel 10: 18 Again the one who looked like a man touched me and gave me strength. 19 “Do not be afraid, you who are highly esteemed,” he said. “Peace! Be strong now; be strong.”
When he spoke to me, I was strengthened and said, “Speak, my lord, since you have given me strength.”


Worried that a patch would fall off I shrunk in embarrassment. Moments later a gentleman from another country approached me. I could not help but think of the shoddy sewing job I had done placing the patches randomly on my garment. “I like your sash, you must be very important!” the man said to me. “Did you hear what he said?” I exclaimed. My countenance changed to bright and cheery and I could no longer see the dangling patches.

  • Sometimes I worry about the little things.
  • Sometimes I think someone is looking at me the wrong way.
  • Sometimes I wondered if yet another person was talking about me.

“Sticks and stones can break my bones but words will never hurt me” was a saying someone tried to teach me, but words do hurt if said in a poisonous way. Words can also heal in an amazing way.  Strangers have walked up to me with encouraging words that absolutely made my day turn from grey and gloomy to bright and sunny.

  • GOD wants me to encourage people.
  • GOD wants me to tell people they “can” do it instead of listing all the reasons they can’t.
  • GOD wants me to enable “Peace” and “Strength” with encouraging words.

When the angel spoke to Daniel he only said a few words, but they were words of encouragement. Immediately Daniel received the words and felt at “Peace” while getting “Stronger” and “Stronger” each second. People can zap my energy with their words of worry and doubt while others can fill me up with encouragement to reach new heights.

I choose to encourage people through their most difficult times, knowing that GOD can do anything HE desires. I put my trust in the LORD.

  • Are you down?
  • Do you feel bad about yourself?
  • Can you hear these important words that you are “Wonderfully” made by GOD and no one can do what HE has you doing?
  • Will you place your trust in GOD so HE can fulfill HIS mighty purpose through you today?

Wednesday, September 21, 2016

C. A. R. Prayer

Daniel 9: I prayed to the Lord my God and confessed:
“Lord, the great and awesome God, who keeps his covenant of love with those who love him and keep his commandments, we have sinned and done wrong. We have been wicked and have rebelled; we have turned away from your commands and laws. We have not listened to your servants the prophets, who spoke in your name to our kings, our princes and our ancestors, and to all the people of the land.


11 All Israel has transgressed your law and turned away, refusing to obey you.
“Therefore the curses and sworn judgments written in the Law of Moses, the servant of God, have been poured out on us, because we have sinned against you.


 17 “Now, our God, hear the prayers and petitions of your servant. For your sake, Lord, look with favor on your desolate sanctuary. 18 Give ear, our God, and hear; open your eyes and see the desolation of the city that bears your Name. We do not make requests of you because we are righteous, but because of your great mercy. 19 Lord, listen! Lord, forgive! Lord, hear and act! For your sake, my God, do not delay, because your city and your people bear your Name.”


As I pondered this prayer, I noticed something very powerful. Daniel was moved to pray for Jerusalem but did it with a heavy heart. HE did not leave himself out of the prayer. He did not say “Why are those people doing this or those people doing that?” I noticed a structure to his prayer.
  • GOD wants me to confess my sins instead of blaming those around me.
  • GOD wants me to acknowledge the punishment I deserve and my need for the FORGIVER to do as they wish.
  • GOD wants me to request based on HIS holy name.

Confess, Acknowledge, Request (CAR) is a structure that is not manipulative in nature. I Confess I am part of a bigger mess and I need a savior just like everyone else. I acknowledge that I do not deserve favor from GOD, only punishment. I also ask GOD, “What good is it to crush me when I am YOURS and should be used as an example of YOUR grace?”

GOD is gracious enough to hear when I truly confess.

  • Are you blaming someone for your problems?
  • Do you think you are above sin?
  • Can you confess your sins to GOD and acknowledge you deserve to be where you are?
  • Will you put your request before GOD stating you are one of HIS and HIS name and example should be shown in you?

Tuesday, September 20, 2016

Becoming Powerful

Daniel 8: 23 “In the latter part of their reign, when rebels have become completely wicked, a fierce-looking king, a master of intrigue, will arise. 24 He will become very strong, but not by his own power. He will cause astounding devastation and will succeed in whatever he does. He will destroy those who are mighty, the holy people. 25 He will cause deceit to prosper, and he will consider himself superior. When they feel secure, he will destroy many and take his stand against the Prince of princes. Yet he will be destroyed, but not by human power.


“You should be in charge” someone said to me. I had never thought about it, but soon grew fond of the idea. I took several leadership classes and took their words to heart. Soon I became one of the leaders and quickly learned it was a daily combat amongst my peers. Budget battles, location of my department and benefits were a constant struggle I had never considered.

  • At one time I thought it would be great to be in “power.”
  • At one time I really wanted to “win” each battle.
  • At one time I desired to be “successful” amongst my peers.

The higher up I went the more I realized someone had to die in order for me to keep climbing. If they were in the only spot at the top then me and others would have to get out our arrows and shoot at that person until they died or retreated. This is very similar to the blinded thinking of the Anti-Christ. His success will blind the masses and television will talk about him daily. BUT GOD says something different.

  • GOD says to me “No weapon formed against you will prosper for I am the one who protects you.”
  • GOD says to me “I AM the way the truth and the life, no one gets to the FATHER except they come through ME.”
  • GOD says to me “There is no power in heaven and earth that can withstand ME.”

After a season of victories, the Anti-Christ will be broken and destroyed. GOD will then turn to me and ask me “Have you remained in ME or did you follow the crowd?” Shamefully I would have to say I followed the crowd. Fortunately for me, HE asks this question today and gives me another chance to follow HIM rather than my own power hungry way. GOD wants me to see that HE is the only way!

  • Are you seeking power?
  • Do you associate yourself with a rising person who is growing in power and feel better about yourself?
  • Can you associate yourself with the one who is truly in power?
  • Will you give up your life and trade it in for HIS? 

Monday, September 19, 2016

Getting Prepared

Daniel 7: 25 He will speak against the Most High and oppress his holy people and try to change the set times and the laws. The holy people will be delivered into his hands for a time, times and half a time.
26 “‘But the court will sit, and his power will be taken away and completely destroyed forever. 27 Then the sovereignty, power and greatness of all the kingdoms under heaven will be handed over to the holy people of the Most High. His kingdom will be an everlasting kingdom, and all rulers will worship and obey him.’


“Where is my phone?” I asked myself as I looked around the house frantically. When I found it I had to ask a similar question, “Where are my keys?” I retraced my steps and found my keys on top of a chest of drawers where I had laid them down to find my phone. That day did not make me feel prepared.

  • Sometimes I do not feel prepared for what is coming.
  • Sometimes I do not feel prepared for the many situations that will pop up in a given day.
  • Sometimes I do not feel prepared for many of life’s happenings.

After losing these same items a few more times, I decided to be prepared. I would locate my keys and phone before I went to bed and put them in the same place, this way when I left for work, there they were. I wonder If GOD is the same way? I mean, do I need to get prepared for something of HIS? Yes!

  • GOD says to me “Keep watch, for you do not know the day or the hour.”
  • GOD says to me “No one knows the day or the hour of MY return.”
  • GOD says to me “I WILL come like a thief in the night, so be prepared”

How can I be prepared for something that has been looming for thousands of years? GOD wants me to communicate with HIM on a daily basis so I will not be surprised. Each day as I read and pray, I get prepared for JESUS’s return. HIS kingdom will be an everlasting kingdom, free of politics and full of HIS love and peace. I look forward to those times immensely.

  • Are you looking forward to CHRIST’s return or are you too distracted?
  • Will you continue to focus in on your distractions of will you start looking for CHRIST daily?
  • Can you start looking for GOD’s kingdom by giving HIM your worries daily?
  • Will you start getting prepared by helping your neighbor?

Friday, September 16, 2016

False Accusations

Daniel 6: 19 At the first light of dawn, the king got up and hurried to the lions’ den. 20 When he came near the den, he called to Daniel in an anguished voice, “Daniel, servant of the living God, has your God, whom you serve continually, been able to rescue you from the lions?”

21 Daniel answered, “May the king live forever! 22 My God sent his angel, and he shut the mouths of the lions. They have not hurt me, because I was found innocent in his sight. Nor have I ever done any wrong before you, Your Majesty.”

23 The king was overjoyed and gave orders to lift Daniel out of the den. And when Daniel was lifted from the den, no wound was found on him, because he had trusted in his God.

24 At the king’s command, the men who had falsely accused Daniel were brought in and thrown into the lions’ den, along with their wives and children. And before they reached the floor of the den, the lions overpowered them and crushed all their bones.


“Where is your expense report?” was the strange question that came from my boss at the time. I had given it to him in the usual manner, yet for some reason this one was missing. Fortunately for me I kept copies of all my receipts and gave him a fresh copy.  “Why is this large charge on your expense report?” was the next strange question. I showed him the email from which he requested I expense dinner for the group he was in charge of. “Hmm… something strange is going on” I thought to myself.

  • There were times I may have been falsely accused.
  • There were times I may have been falsely slandered.
  • There were times I may have been falsely punished.

I told someone what was going on and they asked, “Aren’t you nervous?” For some strange reason, I did not feel nervous, because I had done nothing wrong. My conscience was clear.

  • GOD says to me “By following ME, your conscience will remain clear.”
  • GOD says to me “Blessed are you when people insult you, persecute you and falsely say all kinds of evil against you because of ME.”
  • GOD says to me “I AM with you even when men say false things against you, for they did the same to ME.”

False accusations come from those who are insecure, power hungry and greedy. They will stop at nothing to get their way, even murder someone. JESUS was the perfect example of following every rule to the letter, yet was falsely accused, even unto death. BUT GOD raised HIM from the dead and now HE has the power to forgive anyone who confesses their sins to HIM.

It does not feel good at all when a person is slandering and falsely accusing me. BUT GOD sees through the pettiness. HE may allow a temporary setback, but HE protects me from harm and goes after my false accuser with a vengeance. GOD is my judge and forgiver.

  • Are you being slandered by someone?
  • Are you slandering someone?
  • Can you stop your false accusations and confess your sins to GOD?
  • Will you stop trying to protect yourself from false accusations and simply live for GOD with a clear conscience?

Thursday, September 15, 2016

Accepting Bribes

Daniel 5: 16 Now I have heard that you are able to give interpretations and to solve difficult problems. If you can read this writing and tell me what it means, you will be clothed in purple and have a gold chain placed around your neck, and you will be made the third highest ruler in the kingdom.”

17 Then Daniel answered the king, “You may keep your gifts for yourself and give your rewards to someone else. Nevertheless, I will read the writing for the king and tell him what it means.


22 “But you, Belshazzar, his son, have not humbled yourself, though you knew all this. 23 Instead, you have set yourself up against the Lord of heaven. You had the goblets from his temple brought to you, and you and your nobles, your wives and your concubines drank wine from them. You praised the gods of silver and gold, of bronze, iron, wood and stone, which cannot see or hear or understand. But you did not honor the God who holds in his hand your life and all your ways.


One day I got a notification from the worst boss I ever worked for. Mean, belligerent and condescending was his style. He was reaching out to me because he had moved on to a new position and wanted to bring aboard a team of his own. I was unemployed at the time and money was running quite low. “I wonder if I should work for this guy” I thought to myself.

  • Sometimes I would do some crazy things for money.
  • Sometimes I would lose myself in order to get some money.
  • Sometimes I would become something that I did not like in order to gain a little money.

Life’s hardships can bring on challenges that make me think twice about following someone who has no integrity. I mean maybe I can put up with pretending to be something I am not for a little while, you know, until I “get on my feet”, right? Wrong! GOD says something different.

  • GOD says “I want you to follow ME not money.”
  • GOD says “I want you to be single minded not double-minded.”
  • GOD says “I want your entire heart and there is no room for money and ME.”

The love of money is the root of all kinds of evil. Belshazzar was not only celebrating money, he figured he could use it to solve his problems with the Living GOD. BUT GOD wasn’t having it. HE took Belshazzar’s life that night.

GOD wants me to see this example and chose to follow HIM. Just like Daniel turned down the bribe, GOD wants me to say “No” when it comes to dirty money. No matter how difficult things may look, GOD is there to guide me.

  • Are you constantly thinking of money?
  • Would you do anything for money right now, even lose your own personality?
  • Can you stop following money and start following GOD today? 

Wednesday, September 14, 2016

Corrective Advice

Daniel 4: 27 Therefore, Your Majesty, be pleased to accept my advice: Renounce your sins by doing what is right, and your wickedness by being kind to the oppressed. It may be that then your prosperity will continue.”


33 Immediately what had been said about Nebuchadnezzar was fulfilled. He was driven away from people and ate grass like the ox. His body was drenched with the dew of heaven until his hair grew like the feathers of an eagle and his nails like the claws of a bird.
34 At the end of that time, I, Nebuchadnezzar, raised my eyes toward heaven, and my sanity was restored. Then I praised the Most High; I honored and glorified him who lives forever.
His dominion is an eternal dominion;
    his kingdom endures from generation to generation.
35 All the peoples of the earth
    are regarded as nothing.
He does as he pleases
    with the powers of heaven
    and the peoples of the earth.
No one can hold back his hand
    or say to him: “What have you done?”


Feeling like I could take on the world I strutted down the hall confidently. I mean ‘I” was going to save the department from the downward slide. I put “my” plan into action and things started off well, but soon fell apart. What happened?

  • There were times when I felt proud of “my” abilities.
  • There were times when I felt “I” could accomplish anything.
  • There were times when I felt “my” plan could address any problem.

One flaw to my plan was the fact that I looked at “my” abilities as the answer. Having had a taste of success blinded me to where “my” abilities came from in the first place, namely GOD. What was I to do?

  • GOD wants me to admit I am a sinner before HIM.
  • GOD wants me to renounce my sins by doing what is right.
  • GOD wants me to renounce my wickedness by being kind to the oppressed.

When I admitted that “my” abilities were not mine I noticed something different. I started praising GOD for HIS accomplishments and HIS provisions. I stopped looking at me and started looking at HIM for the answers. I accepted what HE gave me and stopped demanding that HE do as “I” said. I praise GOD who is the MOST HIGH.

  • Are you mad at GOD for where HE has you?
  • Do you think you deserve to be lifted higher?
  • Can you praise GOD for where HE has you?
  • Will you lift your eyes to HIM and acknowledge that you are a sinner and need HIS salvation?

Tuesday, September 13, 2016

Hasty Decisions

15 Now when you hear the sound of the horn, flute, zither, lyre, harp, pipe and all kinds of music, if you are ready to fall down and worship the image I made, very good. But if you do not worship it, you will be thrown immediately into a blazing furnace. Then what god will be able to rescue you from my hand?”

16 Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego replied to him, “King Nebuchadnezzar, we do not need to defend ourselves before you in this matter. 17 If we are thrown into the blazing furnace, the God we serve is able to deliver us from it, and he will deliver us from Your Majesty’s hand. 18 But even if he does not, we want you to know, Your Majesty, that we will not serve your gods or worship the image of gold you have set up.”


Hasty decisions are made when I am full of fear. I mean when I am scared out of my wits, I make hurried decisions without thinking through the long term consequences of my actions. I squirm and only want out of the problem!

  • Many times I lost my patience when faced with certain problems.
  • Many times I wanted out of the problem so bad that I could not wait on a good solution.
  • Many times I could only see demise so I panicked and ran towards any comfort I could get.

Trust in GOD sometimes went out the window when I faced a pressure filled problem that did not seem to go away. I started searching for the quickest way out of the problem rather than facing the situation. BUT GOD wanted me to act differently.

  • GOD wants me to slow down and see HIM rather than speeding up.
  • GOD wants me to focus on HIM rather than on human obstacles.
  • GOD wants me to join HIS winning fight rather than making the fight mine.

Looking back I can see when I trusted GOD and when I made a hasty decision on my own. The times when I did not trust made me make decisions I regretted for a long time. On the other hand, the times where I placed my trust totally in GOD bared the most fruit, usually in ways I never would have imagined. GOD wants total loyalty and total trust in HIM. HE knows I sin, yet HE wants my trust to grow rather than shrink. I trust GOD alone.

  • Where have you placed your trust?
  • Are you squirming to get out of the problem?
  • Can you allow GOD to handle the problem rather than thinking you know the solution?
  • Will you add a measure of trust in GOD today?

Monday, September 12, 2016

Remember the First Step

Daniel 2: 12 This made the king so angry and furious that he ordered the execution of all the wise men of Babylon. 13 So the decree was issued to put the wise men to death, and men were sent to look for Daniel and his friends to put them to death.


17 Then Daniel returned to his house and explained the matter to his friends Hananiah, Mishael and Azariah. 18 He urged them to plead for mercy from the God of heaven concerning this mystery, so that he and his friends might not be executed with the rest of the wise men of Babylon. 19 During the night the mystery was revealed to Daniel in a vision. Then Daniel praised the God of heaven


My first inclination is to jump into action when things are going poorly. I mean, something has to be done so I figure I am the one who should step up and do the “something.” Sometimes it works, while other times it feels like things get worse and worse. What should I have done?

  • Sometimes I think I can solve problems with my strength.
  • Sometimes I think I can solve problems with my power.
  • Sometimes I think I can solve problems with my intellect.

Nebuchadnezzar gave an impossible decree, either tell him what he dreamt and interpret it correctly or die! This was impossible or so it seemed. Sometimes the problems I face “seem” impossible as well. BUT GOD says something different.

  • GOD said “There is nothing impossible for ME.”
  • GOD said “There is nothing too hard for ME.”
  • GOD said “Come to ME first with your problem and I will make your way straight.”

Many times I think of GOD when the problem becomes too large for me. HE is an afterthought. BUT GOD wants to be first. HE wants me to come to HIM when the problem is small and before it gets too big and out of control. Even when the problem is large, HE does not want me to spring into action without consulting HIM first.

GOD wants to be my guide so HE desires that I consult HIM on a regular basis. Sometimes daily is not enough. There are days where I need to ask HIM several times for direction because of moments of feeling lost and left behind. GOD takes the impossible and laughs at how easy it is for HIM to solve the situation. Only HE can provide.

  • Are you facing something impossible?
  • Does it seem like you are at your last rope?
  • Can you take a moment and ask GOD to intervene in your situation no matter how long you have been in it?

Friday, September 2, 2016

Having Resolve

Daniel 1:But Daniel resolved not to defile himself with the royal food and wine, and he asked the chief official for permission not to defile himself this way. Now God had caused the official to show favor and compassion to Daniel, 10 but the official told Daniel, “I am afraid of my lord the king, who has assigned your food and drink. Why should he see you looking worse than the other young men your age? The king would then have my head because of you.”

11 Daniel then said to the guard whom the chief official had appointed over Daniel, Hananiah, Mishael and Azariah, 12 “Please test your servants for ten days: Give us nothing but vegetables to eat and water to drink. 13 Then compare our appearance with that of the young men who eat the royal food, and treat your servants in accordance with what you see.” 14 So he agreed to this and tested them for ten days.

15 At the end of the ten days they looked healthier and better nourished than any of the young men who ate the royal food.


“No” was my answer when the fella’s decided to go out “drinking and clubbing plus, plus.” My resolute statement made them look at me strangely. They did not say much to me from that point on. I could not read their mind but the looks on their face seemed to mark me as a betrayer to their confidence. I was no longer in the “club.” “Maybe I should have gone with them” I thought to myself

  • Sometimes I questioned standing up for GOD.
  • Sometimes I wondered what it would have been like if I folded to my resolve.
  • Sometimes I wanted to quit following GOD because it seemed like everyone else was having more “fun.”

Blinded by “success” I questioned GOD. I mean these people seemed to be doing extremely “well” while I seemed to be getting kicked out of inner circles. GOD had to speak to me about my question.

  • GOD said to me “I AM the way the truth and the life. Do not be afraid of humans and their lack of resolve.”
  • GOD said to me “There is no other GOD but ME. Follow ME with all your heart, mind and soul.”
  • GOD said to me “I WILL bless you abundantly for following ME.

Despite my flawed thinking, I continued. I mean who was I to go against GOD? After a while those people who asked me to hang out with them, vanished one by one and soon I was put in their place. GOD took his time but it was better to wait on HIM.

  • Are you afraid of taking a public stance for following JESUS?
  • Are you ashamed of declaring you follow GOD because the people around you will ostracize you?
  • Can you agree to have add some resolve to follow GOD’s ways to your daily walk little by little?

Thursday, September 1, 2016

Setting Aside Something Special

Ezekiel 48: “Bordering the territory of Judah from east to west will be the portion you are to present as a special gift. It will be 25,000 cubits wide, and its length from east to west will equal one of the tribal portions; the sanctuary will be in the center of it.


35 “The distance all around will be 18,000 cubits.
“And the name of the city from that time on will be:
the Lord is there.”


When I stopped by my friend’s house late, there was a plate of food wrapped in foil. It had all of my favorites on it. “I wondered when you would come by” said my other mother.

  • There have been people who have set aside something special for me.
  • There have been people who put some time into me.
  • There have been people who watched out for me.

It truly is a great feeling to have someone do something special for me. I mean the thought and the effort behind the act is what makes me feel special, I wonder if GOD feels the same way? HE does.

  • GOD wants me to set aside a special gift for HIM.
  • GOD wants me to set aside a special place for HIM.
  • GOD wants me to set aside a special time for HIM.

Just like I love feeling special, GOD wants and deserves the same, actually better. HE wants some time spent with just HIM and I where we can discuss the day and move on with HIS plan. When I do set aside a special thing, time and place GOD names it “THE LORD IS THERE.”

  • Are you setting aside something special for GOD besides money?
  • Have you set aside any time with HIM lately?
  • Will you set aside a part of your living space to GOD where only you and HE can go?