You wake up, reach over and kiss your spouse. You then you turn on the television to check the weather and traffic. You go into the kitchen and grab a bite to eat and promptly brush, floss and take a shower so you can get out the door and be on time for work.
What’s wrong with this morning scenario?
You acknowledged your spouse…
You acknowledged the weather…
You acknowledged the traffic…
You acknowledged your hunger…
You acknowledged your hygiene (even your ‘low’giene:-)…
You acknowledged your job…
But did you acknowledge the One who made everything else you acknowledged possible?
Did you acknowledge God? Did you tell Him good morning? Did you tell Him thanks for protecting you and your family, while you were unconscious all night? Did you thank Him for waking you up? Did you thank Him for brand new mercies..
I’ve found the most intimate refreshing place to pray at my home. I love sitting in my chair on my front porch and enjoying quality time with God in prayer. When I’m out there, it’s like it’s just Him and me. Yes I pray everywhere. But, that place is special.
And yes, I said sitting.
You see, it’s good to get on your knees in submission to God, but contrary to what many may have been taught it’s not mandatory. That is not the exclusively acceptable prayer posture.
Your proper prayer posture isn’t the position of your body, but of your heart and spirit…
To a humble spirit… it’s about humility.
Psalm 51:17 (NKJV)
The sacrifices of God are a broken spirit, A broken and a contrite heart— These, O God, You will not despise
“Racism is like high blood pressure, some people don’t realize they have it until it begins to affect their heart.”
Mark 12:31 (NKJV)
31 And the second, like it, is this: ‘You shall love your neighbor as yourself.’ There is no other commandment greater than these.”
Luke 6:27-36 (NKJV)
27 “But I say to you who hear: Love your enemies, do good to those who hate you, 28 bless those who curse you, and pray for those who spitefully use you. 29 To him who strikes you on the one cheek, offer the other also. And from him who takes away your cloak, do not withhold your tunic either. 30 Give to everyone who asks of you. And from him who takes away your goods do not ask them back. 31 And just as you want men to do to you, you also do to them likewise.
32 “But if you love those who love you, what credit is that to you? For even sinners love those who love them. 33 And if you do good to those who dogood to you, what credit is that to you? For even sinners do the same. 34 And if you lend to those from whom you hope to receive back, what credit is that to you? For even sinners lend to sinners to receive as much back. 35 But love your enemies, do good, and lend, [a]hoping for nothing in return; and your reward will be great, and you will be sons of the Most High. For He is kind to the unthankful and evil. 36 Therefore be merciful, just as your Father also is merciful.
1 John 4:20 (NKJV)
20 If someone says, “I love God,” and hates his brother, he is a liar; for he who does not love his brother whom he has seen, [a]how can he love God whom he has not seen?
For those of you who don’t know, not only do I blog, but I write songs for my wife who is Gospel/Jazz artist, Mechelle Johnson. She also sings classic R&B covers of many of the songs that make up the soundtrack of our 30-plus year marriage with her group, Natural Elegance. It’s part of our marriage ministry (Google SONday Blessing videos) that encourages strong, healthy, joyous Godly marriages between a man and woman. Our motto is…
You minister to the soul with a Gospel song, but you minister to a marriage with a love song!
We are based in a suburb of Memphis TN, and I must say that except for our very supportive church family at Oak Spring Church and a few others, we have gotten very little support from the ‘church community’. However, we have gotten MUCH SUPPORT from the local non-church community, and on radio in different…
We have wayyyyyyyyyyy too many ‘cussing’ Christians!
Our words are so powerful. Their ability to influence and shape our world is confirmed in the word of God.
Proverbs 11:9 (NKJV)
9 The hypocrite with his mouth destroys his neighbor, But through knowledge the righteous will be delivered.
Proverbs 15:1 (NKJV)
15 A soft answer turns away wrath, But a harsh word stirs up anger.
Proverbs 16:24 (NKJV)
24 Pleasant words are like a honeycomb, Sweetness to the soul and health to the bones.
Mark 11:23 NKJV For assuredly, I say to you, whoever says to this mountain, “Be removed and be cast into the sea,” and does not doubt in his heart, but believes that those things he says will be done, he will have whatever he says.
And, just as much as they have the power to influence, our words also reveal what’s inside of us…
Matthew 12:34 (NKJV)
34 Brood[a] of vipers! How can you, being evil, speak good things? For out of the abundance of the heart the mouth speaks.
It’s even with our words that we acknowledge and accept God’s gift of salvation…
Romans 10:10 (NKJV)
For with the heart one believes unto righteousness, and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation.
So, God holds those who believe in Him through His Son and our Savior Yeshua (Jesus Christ) accountable for each and everyone of our words…
His expectations of us are very high…
Matthew 12:36 (NKJV)
But I say to you that for every idle word men may speak, they will give account of it in the day of judgment.
Ephesians 4:29 NIV Do not let any unwholesome talk come out of your mouths, but only what is helpful for building others up according to their needs, that it may benefit those who listen.
That’s why it’s catastrophic when Christians curse, cuss, insult, use vulgar, profane or unclean language!
Too many times, you can’t tell the difference in those in the Body of Christ and those who aren’t by how they talk.
Too many times, Christians choose to express their emotions through words that are displeasing to God.
Too many times, Christians use insults when they disagree.
Too many times, Disciples of Christ allow coaches and those in authority to ‘curse’ their children.
I’ve seen too many of our leaders curse in public and those who call themselves Christians cheer, celebrate and find reasons to justify it.
Too many times people who claim to represent God equate cursing to ‘strong words’ or assertiveness.
What does God consider unclean words?
James 3:10 (NKJV)
10 Out of the same mouth proceed blessing and cursing. My brethren, these things ought not to be so.
What does God consider ‘cursing’?
KJV Dictionary Definition: damn
1. To sentence to eternal torments in a future state; to punish in hell.
2. To condemn; to decide to be wrong or worthy of punishment; to censure; to reprobate.
He that doubteth is damned if he eat. Rom xiv
3. To condemn; to explode; to decide to be bad, mean, or displeasing, be hissing or any mark of disapprobation; as, to damn a play, or a mean author.
4. A word used in profaneness; a term of execration.
Our words can either bless or curse. Our words can either encourage or discourage. Our words can either breathe life into a room…or suck it out!
Words can totally destroy or testimony and credibility as a Christian.
When you curse someone, it isn’t ‘harmless’.
YOU ARE RELEASING SOMETHING…
YOU ARE GIVING SOMETHING…
When you say, “God bless you!”…You’re giving a BLESSING!
When you say, “Damn you!” or “I’ll be damned!”, or even “Go to hell!”…YOU’RE GIVING A CURSE!
Anyone who involved in ministry or cause that wears the name Gospel have either gone through or are going through periods when he or she may feel their efforts aren’t getting the attention or ‘support’ that it deserves.
You know that you’re anointed. You have prayed over your decisions and you feel confident that you’re doing just what God called you to do.
But, when we deliver a message, sing a song, write a song, book or blog, launch a ministry…invest our heart, soul, passion and yes, money into our ministry…it can be devastating when people don’t seem to ‘feel it’, accept it or appreciate it.
Other than my blog, I collaborate with my wife (GospelJazz recording artist Mechelle Johnson) to write songs for our music/marriage ministry. I have been an ordained minister for over 21 years, and I have found myself second guessing my callings and investments because of…
Many times after we have hurt someone, and they have ‘forgiven’ us, it angers us and hurts us when they bring it back up. We quickly remind them that ‘you are supposed to forgive and forget’. We remind them of how God says He will never remember our sins anymore…
Isaiah 43:25, “I, even I, am he who blots out your transgressions, for my own sake, and remembers your sins no more.”
God is letting us know the power of His forgiveness, but do you think our omniscient, all-knowing God can’t recall what we did? Do you think He actually can’t remember it anymore?
This must be understood in proper context. God forgives us and doesn’t hold our sins against us WHEN WE REPENT. But, what is repentance? Repentance is godly sorrow over what we’ve done (2 Corinthians 7:10). Repentance is a change of…
When it comes to sex, married couples aren’t in the mood at the same time.
“I have a headache.”
It’s a given couples won’t be on the same page sexually all the time, but the bible gives some sound advice and a good reason (warning) why in 1 Corinthians Chapter 7…
1 Corinthians 7:3-5 (NKJV)
3 Let the husband render to his wife the affection due her, and likewise also the wife to her husband. 4 The wife does not have authority over her own body, but the husband does. And likewise the husband does not have authority over his own body, but the wife does.5 Do not deprive one another except with consent for a time, that you may give yourselves to fasting and prayer; and come together again so that Satan does not tempt you because of your lack of self-control.
Even though I’ve never used them, I can truly understand sometimes why some people use drugs.
Some days responsibilities, burdens and uncertainties can stretch our faith to the limits. That’s what they are designed to do so our faith can grow.
Some nights anxieties won’t allow you to sleep or when you do sleep your mind doesn’t really rest.
We can go through entire seasons of our lives in a ‘fog’. Our days can be a blur and a shadow. As we live through the consequences of our sins, decisions and weaknesses sometimes all we can do is just sigh…
Psalm 90:9 (NKJV)
9 For all our days have passed away in Your wrath;
We finish our years like a sigh.
We can become so lonely, either or with people all around us, to the point that we can feel no one cares about us.