WHY WAS JESUS SILENT?

When you think God isn’t listening…

MATTHEW 15:21-28 (NKJV)

21 Then Jesus went out from there and departed to the region of Tyre and Sidon.22 And behold, a woman of Canaan came from that region and cried out to Him, saying, “Have mercy on me, O Lord, Son of David! My daughter is severely demon-possessed.”

23 But He answered her not a word.

And His disciples came and urged Him, saying, “Send her away, for she cries out after us.” 24 But He answered and said, “I was not sent except to the lost sheep of the house of Israel.” 25 Then she came and worshiped Him, saying, “Lord, help me!” 26 But He answered and said, “It is not good to take the children’s bread and throwit to the little dogs.” 27 And she said, “Yes, Lord, yet even the little dogs eat the crumbs which fall from their masters’ table.” 28 Then Jesus answered and said to her, “O woman, great is your faith! Let it be to you as you desire.” And her daughter was healed from that very hour.

Why did Jesus remain silent in verse 23?

Why didn’t He answer the woman when she first asked?

If she had left, angry or discouraged because Jesus didn’t answer immediately, then her daughter would not have been delivered.

Our God is a God of order…Just because He’s silent, doesn’t mean that He doesn’t listen. God has His own timing…

Galations 4:4 (NKJV)

In the fullness of time, He gave His only Son… 

Acts 17:30-31 (KJV)

30  And the times of this ignorance God winked at; but now commandeth all men every where to repent: 31 Because he hath appointed a day, in the which he will judge the world in righteousness by that man whom he hath ordained; whereof he hath given assurance unto all men, in that he hath raised him from the dead.

Yes, there are examples throughout the bible of God’s timing.

Jesus tells us why He initially remains silent to the Canaanite woman…He tells her he was sent FIRST to lost sheep of Israel. His answer could even be perceived as harsh.

It wasn’t time for the Gentiles yet…BUT, it’s possible that Jesus also remained silent so we could see the example of the woman’s persistent faith.

Jesus’ silence prompted the woman to worship Jesus even more, and be more persistent (vs 25).

Those around her were able to witness her great faith and persistence…She didn’t get offended, angry or discouraged.

Sometimes people will get, super spiritual and tell you to ask God and let it go…that continuing to ask is a lack of faith…but the bible teaches persistence in God’s silence (Luke 11:5-13, Luke 8:1-8) still having faith through the persistence.

It’s HOW you continue to ask, your attitude as you ask that matters (the woman remained humble and didn’t get angry or impatient with Jesus). After all, persistence is a sign of faith that your persistence will pay off, right?

This woman’s persistence and great faith prompted God to act beyond His timing on her behalf, PERSONALLY.

God can do the same thing for us today. If you’re asking God to move in your life…

DON’T GIVE UP…

DON’T BE DISCOURAGED…

DON’T GET ANGRY AT GOD…

AND MOST IMPORTANTLY DON’T LOOSE FAITH, even if you feel God is being harsh!

Be content to be patient and work within God’s timing, and sometimes He will do something for us ‘personally’ to confirm our faith…

Strengthen our faith…

And display our faith so others can see and believe.

BE BLESSTIFIED!!!

 

HERE’S STRONG BIBLICAL EVIDENCE WHY ‘GOOD FRIDAY’ SHOULD BE ‘GOOD THURSDAY’…

I strongly feel that one of God’s spiritual purposes for allowing COVID-19 to interrupt in-person worship is so we can pause and take a good look at how we approach worship and our traditions.

One of the reasons the religious establishment sought to kill Jesus was because He challenged their traditions.

Matthew 15:3 (ESV)

He answered them, “And why do you break the commandment of God for the sake of your tradition?

He also made it clear that God demands that we worship Him in spirit and truth, not just what we choose to believe…

John 4:24 (NKJV)

24 God is Spirit, and those who worship Him must worship in spirit and truth.”

One of those traditions that I think that God wants us to reconsider is what we call ‘Good Friday’ or the day when Yeshua was crucified and buried. I can’t count the times I’ve heard or read arguments trying to make Friday through Sunday 3 days and 3 nights. And quite frankly, it always sounds like trying to fit a square peg in a round hole.

Many Christians feel they have to justify making two days into three because they don’t want to contradict what we have been taught… a tradition.

It’s like trying to fit a square peg into a circle.

Consider this.

Take another look at the account of the day Yeshua was on the cross taking into consideration that the Jewish day began at what we call 6pm or sunset to sunrise.

The Gospels say that Yeshua cried out and breathed His last breath around the 9th hour, or 3pm…

Mark 15:33-37 (NKJV)

33 Now when the sixth hour had come, there was darkness over the whole land until the ninth hour. 34 And at the ninth hour Jesus cried out with a loud voice, saying, “Eloi, Eloi, lama sabachthani?” which is translated, “My God, My God, why have You forsaken Me?

35 Some of those who stood by, when they heard that, said, “Look, He is calling for Elijah!” 36 Then someone ran and filled a sponge full of sour wine, put it on a reed, and offered it to Him to drink, saying, “Let Him alone; let us see if Elijah will come to take Him down.”

37 And Jesus cried out with a loud voice, and breathed His last.

As we move forward to verse 42, it is now EVENING and Yeshua is still on the cross as Joseph of Arimathea asks Pilate for the body.

Mark 15:42-43 (NKJV)

42 Now when evening had come, because it was the Preparation Day, that is, the day before the Sabbath, 43 Joseph of Arimathea, a prominent council member, who was himself waiting for the kingdom of God, coming and taking courage, went in to Pilate and asked for the body of Jesus.

Upon the arrival of evening, it’s no longer the same day as it was when Yeshua was crucified.

Genesis 1:5 (NKJV)

God called the light Day, and the darkness He called Night. [a]So the evening and the morning were the first day.

God gave us His word from a Jewish perspective. Problems arise when we try and view it through the lens of our western perspective.

Notice everything that had to take place after before Jesus could be placed into the tomb after 3pm…

John 19:31-42 (NKJV)

3Therefore, because it was the Preparation Day, that the bodies should not remain on the cross on the Sabbath (for that Sabbath was a high day), the Jews asked Pilate that their legs might be broken, and that they might be taken away. 32 Then the soldiers came and broke the legs of the first and of the other who was crucified with Him. 33 But when they came to Jesus and saw that He was already dead, they did not break His legs. 34 But one of the soldiers pierced His side with a spear, and immediately blood and water came out. 35 And he who has seen has testified, and his testimony is true; and he knows that he is telling the truth, so that you may believe. 36 For these things were done that the Scripture should be fulfilled, “Not one of His bones shall be broken.” 37 And again another Scripture says, “They shall look on Him whom they pierced.”

38 After this, Joseph of Arimathea, being a disciple of Jesus, but secretly, for fear of the Jews, asked Pilate that he might take away the body of Jesus; and Pilate gave him permission. So he came and took the body of Jesus. 39 And Nicodemus, who at first came to Jesus by night, also came, bringing a mixture of myrrh and aloes, about a hundred pounds. 40 Then they took the body of Jesus, and bound it in strips of linen with the spices, as the custom of the Jews is to bury. 41 Now in the place where He was crucified there was a garden, and in the garden a new tomb in which no one had yet been laid. 42 So there they laid Jesus, because of the Jews’ Preparation Day, for the tomb was nearby.

Remember, harmonizing with Mark 15:42, it was EVENING when Joseph of Arimathea asked for the body of Yeshua. This was AFTER the soldiers came to break His legs (this was evening too) and realized He was already dead. This was after he was given sour wine to drink before He died. All this was after 3pm and took time. It took time for Joseph to go to Pilate, ask for the body, get His linen cloth, properly wrap His body in the cloth, get the body of our Savior off the cross, and take it to the tomb.

This all happened after evening had arrived…the next biblical day according to the Jewish perspective of a day beginning in the evening rather than at 12 midnight.

So, with the ARRIVAL of evening came the Day of Preparation, or what we call Friday, which means everything that happened BEFORE evening was on the previous day, what we call Thursday.

If the crucifixion occurred on what we call Thursday, then one can easily justify three days and three nights… no trying to fit a square peg into a circle.

Of course, some are so devoted to a tradition that doesn’t make sense, they will ask, “What does it matter?”

It matters because God demands to be worshipped in spirit and truth.

It matters because we don’t want to be guilty of teaching, preaching and believing a lie.

It matters because the Adversary wants to pervert everything holy (NAMES MATTER (WHY WE SHOULD STOP CALLING EASTER…EASTER).

I’m sure some ‘seasoned’ theologians will read this and try and make me seem as though I don’t know what I’m talking about…and that’s exactly what happened to Jesus.

Think about it.

BE BLESSTIFED!

WHY I SOMETIMES CRAVE ATTENTION…

There are many people in the world who don’t want any attention drawn to themselves…

And, there’s nothing wrong with that.

But, when I’m honest with myself, I sometimes crave attention….Why?

Because I’m a creative…Sometimes creativity crying to be seen, heard, tasted, experienced, enjoyed,… meant to bring inspiration, comfort and evangelize can cause uneasiness and even depression.

Why?

Because I’m a minister and disciple… ministry and discipleship are nothing if they aren’t seen…heard…shared.

Even Jesus Himself that we aren’t supposed to hide our light, but share it…

Matthew 5:14-16 (NKJV)

14 (A)“You are the light of the world. A city that is set on a hill cannot be hidden. 15 Nor do they (B)light a lamp and put it under a basket, but on a lampstand, and it gives light to all who are in the house. 16 Let your light so shine before men, (C)that they may see your good works and (D)glorify your Father in heaven.

God wants us to draw attention to the gifts He’s given us with humility and grace…not arrogance and pride.

BE BLESSTIFIED!

HOW REPENTANCE IS GOD’S “UNDO” BUTTON…

How many times have you typed something on a device and decided that wasn’t what you wanted to say?

How many times have you done something on a device and decided it wasn’t an action that you wanted to do?

Did you throw away your device?

No.

You clicked UNDO.

Clicking UNDO allows you to totally wipe out what you didn’t want without affecting anything else you’re working on.

When you’ve typed or done something wrong, it allows you the opportunity to ‘change directions’ and do it right.

When you confess your sins to God, and commit to change directions, you’ve clicked God’s UNDO button.

When you repent, God wipes out what you’ve said, done or thought.

When you repent, God doesn’t hold what you said, did, or thought against you anymore…

When you repent, God allows you to continue with your life as if you’ve never did what you did…

When you repent, God allows you to start over and do it the right way…

As long as you don’t RETYPE the SAME thing again.

ASKING GOD FOR FORGIVENESS ISN’T REPENTANCE (QUICK DEFINITION)…

THERE’S A DIFFERENCE BETWEEN REMORSE & REPENTANCE…

WOULD YOU RATHER HAVE AN APOLOGY OR REPENTANCE?

GOD DIDN’T ASK FOR AN APOLOGY, HE DEMANDS REPENTANCE…

2 Corinthians 7:9-10 (NKJV)

Now I rejoice, not that you were made sorry, but that your sorrow led to repentance. For you were made sorry in a godly manner, that you might suffer loss from us in nothing. 10 For godly sorrow produces repentance leading to salvation, not to be regretted; but the sorrow of the world produces death.

John 1:9 (NKJV)

If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.

BE BLESSTIFIED!

TOO MANY CHRISTIANS REFUSE TO TURN THE OTHER CHEEK (AND HERE’S THE PROBLEM WITH THAT)…

It’s unfortunate that too many times, Christians totally disregard what God said. Christians will claim to live by God’s word where it’s convenient for their own personal theology, but in places where it challenges their beliefs or behavior, many totally disregard what the word says explicitly.

“You’ve got common sense.”

“God didn’t mean that”

“Times are different now!”

“They don’t know who they’re messing with!”

“Don’t make me revert back to my old self!”

“I haven’t always been saved!”

These are just a few of the statements made when people want to exercise their own authority over God’s word.

One such statement and commandment that Yeshua (Jesus) made was when He clearly told us to TURN THE OTHER CHEEK…

Matthew 5:38-39 (NKJV)

“You have heard that it was said, ‘An eye for an eye and a tooth for a tooth.’ 39 But I tell you not to resist an evil person. But whoever slaps you on your right cheek, turn the other to him also.

There’s no IFs, ANDs or BUTs about what Jesus said. We are not to resist an evil person, but we are to do exactly what He did before He was crucified…

Luke 22:64 (NKJV)

64 [a]And having blindfolded Him, they struck Him on the face and asked Him, saying, “Prophesy! Who is the one who struck You?”

Many Christians are quick to teach their children that if someone hits you, that you are to hit them back. “Don’t let anyone think you’re afraid of them.”

Others will say that God allows you to defend yourself.

They are correct that God allows you to defend yourself WHEN YOUR LIFE IS IN DANGER. But, someone trying to humiliate or intimidate you by slapping you or striking you is totally different from someone tackling you or trying to overcome you physically. It’s totally different that when someone is really threatening your life.

HERE’S THE PROBLEM WITH IGNORING TURNING THE OTHER CHEEK…

Yes, God give us permission to defend our lives, but when our lives aren’t in danger, its not about self defense…IT’S ABOUT PRIDE!

Pride and the sins that come from pride (arrogance, jealousy, envy, wrath, revenge, etc.) are the reasons that disagreements escalate…

families are dysfunctional…

friendships end…

crime is prevalent in so many cities…

and wars strike up around the world.

Too many Christians are ‘ready for a fight’!

Too many Christians are fantasizing about a situation where they have to ‘stand their ground’!

Too many Christians don’t trust God to fight their battles! (Read 2 Chronicles Chapter 20).

Too many Christians are ready for a physical fight because they don’t trust God to fight their spiritual battles.

We can’t cherry-pick our way through the bible asserting our own authority over God’s. That’s idolatry, and He’s not having it.

BE BLESSTIFIED!

WHEN WE VIEW ACCOUNTABILITY AS AN ATTACK…

I can’t count the times my wife or family has challenged me to be accountable, and I immediately became defensive.

I knew they were right…

I knew they meant me no harm…

But, my first visceral response was to defend myself rather than acknowledge what they said.

I know I’m not alone. How many times have you viewed accountability as a personal attack?

In family?

Professionally?

Spiritually?

As a friend?

As a leader?

One of the greatest signs of an Emotional Intelligent, spiritually mature leader is the ability to take both…

CONSTRUCTIVE and DESTRUCTIVE CRITICISM.

The fact is that sometimes criticism, insults and feedback ARE being used to attack…

BUT, THAT DOESN’T DIMINISH THE TRUTH IN WHAT’S SAID…

and the opportunity for growth.

Remember what God told us through Solomon in Proverbs…

Proverbs 27:17 (NLT)

17 As iron sharpens iron,
so a friend sharpens a friend.

BE BLESSTIFIED!

WHY GOD IS ANTI-GAY, BUT NOT ANTI-GAY PEOPLE…

Because God loves gay people. God loves everyone.

Don’t get it twisted. This is not just a self-righteous, judgmental platitude…it’s biblical truth.

Why is God anti-gay?

Because God is anti-adultery, but not anti-adulterer.

He’s anti-fornication, but not anti-fornicator.

He’s anti-murder, but not anti-murderer

He’s anti-malice, but not anti-malicious.

He’s anti-hate, but not anti-hater.

He’s anti-lie, but not anti-liar.

He’s anti-foolishness, but not anti-fool.

He’s anti-pride, but not anti-proud person.

He’s anti-greed, but not anti-greedy person.

I think you get the picture. God is anti-sin, but He is not anti-sinner. Even though there are those trying to now establish that homosexuality is not a sin. It still is. Even though many people are trying to say that that’s not what Sodom and Gomorrah was about. It still was (Genesis 19). Even though many people are trying to say that Jesus never addressed homosexuality, He still did (Matthew 19:4-6) FOR THOSE WHO SAY JESUS NEVER ADDRESSED HOMOSEXUALITY…. And even though people are refuting what Paul said about it, it’s still truth (Romans 1:24-27).

But, it’s also true that there are multiple other sins that are equally as wrong as homosexuality (Romans 1:28-32, 2:1-3). GOD HATES MORE THAN HOMOSEXUALITY & ABORTION (DON’T CHERRY PICK SINS)…

Calling out homosexuality, as well as any other sins, is not hate…it’s our responsibility (Ezekiel 33:1-11, Romans 6:23). But, we must always remember…

To do so in love (1 Corinthians 16:14).

To remember that we are all sinners saved by grace (Ephesians 2:8).

We are all born with innate desires that we must overcome with the help of God’s Holy Spirit (Psalm 51:5). JUST BECAUSE SOMEONE’S ‘BORN THAT WAY’ DOESN’T MAKE IT OKAY…


So no matter what your sin may be, God still loves you!


God is anti-sin, but He is never anti-you!

1 Peter 3:9 (NKJV)

9 not returning evil for evil or reviling for reviling, but on the contrary blessing, knowing that you were called to this, that you may inherit a blessing.

BE BLESSTIFIED!

WHY THERE’S NO APP FOR WASHING YOUR BUTT…

In an age of self-driving cars…

Robots that vacuum the floor…

Drones that deliver your pizza…

And artificial intelligence to take care of your home when you’re away… our lives are becoming more what looked like the future on The Jetsons.

There seems to be a new APP for everything every day.

However, there are still some things technology can’t do.

There’s still some things you can only do for yourself…

There’s still no APP for washing your BUTT…

Just as there’s no automatic car wash that can provide the level of detail that can be provided by the ‘human touch’, there’s no technology that can provide the necessary levels of…

HYGIENE AND ‘LOWgiene’ necessary to be clean, odor-free, and healthy.

And, there can never be an APP to accept God’s gift of salvation for you…

Accepting Yeshua the Messiah, Jesus Christ, is a personal decision.

No one else can believe for you…

No one else can have faith for you…

No one else can repent for your sins for you…

No one else can confess with their mouths and believe in their hearts for you…

Romans 10:8-10 (NKJV)

But what does it say? “The word is near you, in your mouth and in your heart” (that is, the word of faith which we preach): that if you confess with your mouth the Lord Jesus and believe in your heart that God has raised Him from the dead, you will be saved. 10 For with the heart one believes unto righteousness, and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation.

So, as things become quicker, easier and ‘smarter’ don’t never forget that some things we will always have to slow down and do for ourselves.

WHY YOU’RE TOO OLD TO TAKE A SHOWER AT NIGHT THEN JUST GET UP & GO…

THE LESSON IN A CLEAN, BUT ITCHY BUTT…

BE BLESSTIFIED!

WHY AREN’T CHRISTIANS CONCERNED WITH TEAMS WITH A DEVIL AS THE MASCOT…

If there’s one consistency between both the Old and New Testaments, it’s the fact that names matter to God. From God changing Abram’s name to Abraham to Yeshua changing Simon’s name to Peter (Cephas).

In an age when so many in the Body of Christ are politicizing sins that society considers BIG, while excusing those they consider small, the bible is clear that God takes how we identify ourselves very seriously…

Not many Christians are quick to name their children, Satan or Lucifer.

Why?

Because those names are used to identify the enemy, the accuser of the saints…the devil.

That’s why I don’t understand that while Christians are so passionately ‘campaign’ against the so-called BIG sins, why they never speak up against teams, many of which they allow their children to be a part of, that identify themselves with a devil.

They wear sports paraphernalia, fly flags, display bumper ‘stickers’ and worst of all cheer for, root for, in a sense ‘praise’…and glorify THE DEVILS!

Right now someone reading this knows in their heart it’s not right, but they are naturally inclined to do what Christians do when they want to continue doing something…look for reasons to justify it.

Do you think God is cool with you allowing your child to be identified as a ‘devil’?

Do you think God is okay with allowing a school, AAU team, or professional team to be identified as the DEVILS? The RED DEVILS? The BLUE DEVILS? etc.?

Names matter so much go God that He demands we be baptized in the NAME of the Father, Son and Holy Spirit. Here name doesn’t mean the combination of consonants and vowels that make up ‘Yeshua’, ‘Jesus’, ‘Emmanuel’, Adonai, or even Ruach ha-kodesh (Holy Spirit). Names denote authority, character…who you are, or what it is. Think about the fact that God changed Jacob’s name to Israel.

Think about the fact that most Christians are content with calling a day chosen to commemorate Yeshua’s (Jesus’s) death, burial, and resurrection by a pagan goddess’s name (Easter), which is the same as (Eostre, Ishtar, Ashtoreth) one of the very names He forbid us to make mention of, one of the very names that Israel and Judah invoked (said) and provoked God to anger.

NAMES MATTER: WHY WE SHOULD CELEBRATE JESUS’ RESURRECTION WITHOUT CALLING IT ‘EASTER’…

Joshua 23:7 (NKJV)

and lest you go[a] among these nations, these who remain among you. You shall not make mention of the name of their gods, nor cause anyone to swear by them; you shall not serve them nor bow down to them,

Names matter, so we should stop trivializing what is important to Him.

BE BLESSTIFIED!

WHY MANY ‘MISJUDGE’ WHAT IT MEANS TO ‘JUDGE’ SOMEONE…

It’s one of the most abused and misused statements and deflections…

“You can’t judge me!”

“Judge much?”

“Only God can judge me!”

Identifying what the bible says is sin isn’t judging. To identify something is to recognize and name it.

Recognizing and naming sin is NOT judging. It’s our responsibility as disciples to hold one another accountable and to let ‘sinners’ (we are all sinners saved by grace) that they are falling short of God’s standards.

John 7:24 (NKJV)

24 Do not judge according to appearance, but judge with righteous judgment.”

Ephesians 5:11 (NKJV)

11 And have (A)no fellowship with the unfruitful works of darkness, but rather [a]expose them.

Disagreeing with a sinful lifestyle is not a phobia. For example, if I have a child that uses marijuana for recreational use, and disagree with their regular use of it, that doesn’t mean that I hate them or make me afraid of them. I’m not a ‘marijuana-phobe’. WHEN YOU’RE FALSELY ‘DIAGNOSED’ WITH HOMOPHOBIA…

However, assuming that you know what is inside someone else’s heart…

Assuming that you know their motives…

Or pronouncing condemnation on them…

Are all examples of judging.

Saying that the cup in the picture above is green is not judging it. But, assuming there is coffee inside of it is. Assuming it can only be used for coffee is. The fact is that it may prefer being called a mug.

“YOU’RE JUDGING ME!”… is often the response to an assumption or a conclusion based on someone’s established behavior, character and that’s not judging, that’s their fruit.

Matthew 7:20 (NKJV)

20 Therefore by their fruits you will know them.

BE BLESSTIFIED!

WHAT’S WRONG WITH THIS PICTURE ACCORDING TO THE SCRIPTURES…


Nearly everyone is familiar with Leonardo Da Vinci’s THE LAST SUPPER.

It’s an iconic and well-loved work of art among many who call themselves believers in Yeshua the Messiah (Jesus Christ), and it’s recognized among those who don’t. It’s been displayed in churches and homes for centuries.

The painting portrays the evening that the Lord ate the Passover meal and instituted the Lord’s Supper with His disciples before He was betrayed.

Remember, Jesus Himself told us that God is a spirit and demands to be worshipped in spirit and TRUTH…

John 4:24 (NKJV)

24 God is Spirit, and those who worship Him must worship in spirit and truth.”

We also live in time when people claim to love THE TRUTH and reject FAKE NEWS.

So, with all that being said, what’s wrong with the famous painting, THE LORD’S SUPPER, based on these scriptures according to the Complete Jewish Bible translation…

Mark 14:18 (CJB)

18 As they were reclining and eating, Yeshua said, “Yes! I tell you that one of you is going to betray me.”

Matthew 26:20 (CJB)

20 When evening came, Yeshua reclined with the twelve talmidim;

According to the scriptures as well as the context of culture and time…THEY WERE NOT SITTING. THEY WERE RECLINING.

Of course there will be some who say, “Why does this matter?”

Those of us who claim to be Christians can be the worst at sometimes deciding ‘that doesn’t matter’ when it threatens our traditions and what we choose to believe.

So, why does it matter?

Because the painting does not depict the way it happened, and that’s not truth.

Because every painting or picture intended to portray Jesus has influenced thought for centuries.

Because every painting and picture intended to portray Jesus has shaped what and how people believe and has had an influence on the faith.

Because it shapes the way people ‘experience’ their faith and what they think is correct and incorrect.

Do you want people publishing images of you depicting an event in your honor wrongly, falsely or inaccurately? Of course not. Why should our Lord and Savior be any different?

The fact is that when you present some people with the truth, they are reluctant to, or refuse to accept it because they have been influenced by art that very well MAY NOT have been commissioned by God.

Maybe this is why He clearly commanded in regard to likenesses of Him…

Exodus 20:4 (NKJV)

“You shall not make for yourself a carved image—any likeness of anything that is in heaven above, or that is in the earth beneath, or that is in the water under the earth;

BE BLESSTIFIED!

YOU ALWAYS HAVE THE SOLUTION TO SOMEONE ELSE’S PROBLEM…

happiness-2411764_1920

No matter how many problems you have. No matter how many issues you’re struggling with. No matter how little money, influence or resources you may have. God has still given you the solution to someone else’s problem.

Even if your meal is free, God has equipped you to bring something of value to the table.

It may not have a dollar $ign…

Encouragement…

Inspiration

Entertainment

Education

Strength

Support

A shoulder…

An ear…

A voice…

To the friendship…

To the marriage.

To the team.

To the organization.

To your church.

To a stranger.


Even if you’re broke, you can be the key to someone’s breakthrough.


Not only no matter your situation, but BECAUSE of your situation, God is strategically positioning you with the people and places where you can be a blessing.

Remember this…

James 2:5(NKJV)

5 Listen, my beloved brethren: Has God not chosen the poor of this world to be rich in faith and heirs of the kingdom which He promised to those who love Him?

Now…Get out there and bless somebody today!

BE BLESSTIFIED!

THE DIFFERENCE IN WHEN SOMEONE VALUES YOU & VAL-USES YOU…

Have you ever noticed what Jesus told the crowd after He fed over 5000 people. He called them out for not valuing the miraculous signs He did and the fact that He was doing the works of the Father. He pointed out that they were just following Him because He fed them. In other words, they valued Him, but only for what they could GET OUT OF HIM. They valued what He could do, not who He was…

John 6:26 (NLT)

26 Jesus replied, “I tell you the truth, you want to be with me because I fed you, not because you understood the miraculous signs.

Think about the people in your life who truly value you and who you are. These are the people who value the ‘INTANGIBLES’ that you bring to the table. Those closest to you; who enjoy quality time with you; those who are genuinely concerned about you; those who truly miss you when you aren’t around. They make your life worth living.


They are the people who will be there for you whether you’re up or down, through good and bad. They value helping YOU look good…These are the people who VALUE YOU.


Then there are those people who value the ‘TANGIBLES’ that you bring to the table….

Your skill-set…

Your finances…

Your talents…

Your innovation…

Your muscle…

Your hustle.

They may never even acknowledge that they value you, but they prove it through their actions. However, they ONLY value the ‘tangibles” that you bring to the table.


These people could care less how you feel. They aren’t genuinely concerned about you, and they don’t want to spend any quality time with you. They value how you make THEM look good. These are the people who VAL-USE YOU.


Pray for the discernment to distinguish between the people who VALUE you, and those who VAL-USE YOU.

They’re everywhere…

In your family…

On your job…

In your church…

Everywhere.

And, be conscious of the people you may be VAL-USING in your life.

THE BLESSING IN WHEN SOMEONE IS TRYING TO ‘USE YOU’…

BE BLESSTIFED!

WARNING! DON’T ASK GOD TO MAKE YOU STOP_________.

Have you ever been caught up in thoughts, behavior, habits, relationships, etc, that you wanted to STOP, but found STOPPING to be an enormous struggle?

Are struggling to STOP doing something right now? Are you fighting that battle between the flesh and the spirit?

The Apostle Paul even admitted to and described this struggle…

Romans 7:18-20  (NKJV)

18 For I know that in me (that is, in my flesh) nothing good dwells; for to will is present with me, but how to perform what is good I do not find. 19 For the good that I will to do, I do not do; but the evil I will not to do, that I practice. 20 Now if I do what I will not to do, it is no longer I who do it, but sin that dwells in me.

Galatians 5:16-17 (NKJV)

16 I say then: Walk in the Spirit, and you shall not fulfill the lust of the flesh. 17 For the flesh lusts against the Spirit, and the Spirit against the flesh; and these are contrary to one another, so that you do not do the things that you wish.

Many times, in the heat of this struggle, one might ask God, “Lord, please MAKE me STOP!

Remember this, YOU MAY NOT LIKE THE WAY THAT GOD MAKES YOU STOP!

When you read God’s word, He doesn’t want us to ask Him to make us stop. When we choose sin, we are choosing sin over him. It’s a relationship decision, much like a spouse choosing a rival over his or her spouse. No one wants to make a husband or wife stop choosing someone else over them. A spouse would want their loved one to CHOOSE TO STOP seeing someone else.

God gives us the power, strength and responsibility to STOP ourselves.

Notice where God places the responsibility in these verses…

Hebrews 12:1 (NKJV)

12 Therefore we also, since we are surrounded by so great a cloud of witnesses, LET US LAY ASIDE every weight, and the sin which so easily ensnares us, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us,

Ephesians 4:31  (NKJV)

31 Let all bitterness, wrath, anger, clamor, and evil speaking BE PUT AWAY from you, with all malice.

Colossians 3:8  (NKJV)

But now YOU YOURSELVES ARE TO PUT OFF ALL OF THESE: anger, wrath, malice, blasphemy, filthy language out of your mouth.

2 Corinthians 7:1  (NKJV)

7 Therefore, having these promises, beloved, LET US CLEANSE OURSELVES from all filthiness of the flesh and spirit, perfecting holiness in the fear of God.

It is clear that God does not want us asking Him to make us STOP doing anything that is displeasing to Him.

STOP on your own!

BE BLESSTIFIED!

LEARNING TO FUNCTION IN DYSFUNCTION…

Is your family dysfunctional? 

Is there dysfunction on your job?

Is there dysfunction in your church?

Is dysfunction in churches your excuse for not joining and attending?

Dysfunction is an unfortunate ‘norm’ of our imperfect world.

Jesus told His disciples in…

John 6:70…

Did I not choose you, the twelve, and one of you is a devil?

The disciples were constantly bickering about which of them would be greater (Luke 9:46, Luke 22:44)

Peter denied Christ…

Judas betrayed Him… 

Many other disciples left Him when they felt His words and expectations were too difficult John 6:60-66

In the early days of His earthy ministry, even Jesus’ brothers didn’t believe He was the Christ (John 7:5)

Even Jesus’ group and family had dysfunction. 

Eve was the first one to allow an ‘outside influence’ come between her marriage. 

Adam and Eve’s son killed his brother.

Isaac loved Esau more, but Rebekah loved Jacob.

Jacob and Esau were at odds. 

Jacob loved Joseph more than his other sons. 

Those brothers hated Joseph so much that they sold him as a slave. 

David, a man after God’s own heart, had a dysfunctional family.

His son Amnon rapes his sister Tamar. 

Absalom, one of David’s other sons had his brother Amnon killed, and tried to kill his father David for his throne….I could go on and on.

If there is one thing that’s constant in the bible…it’s dysfunctional families. 

Yes you can be anointed and dysfunctional…

The greatest men and women used by God…the anointed of God, who He used as the pillars of our faith had dysfunctional families….But, they all went on to fulfill God’s purpose in their lives. 

They functioned in dysfunction.

Sometimes we feel bad about the dysfunction in our families, but when we read our bibles, we find out it’s more normal than abnormal. 

If your family has dysfunction, that makes you a prime candidate to be used by God. 

In fact, in…

Matthew 10:34-36, Jesus Himself said, 34 “Do not suppose that I have come to bring peace to the earth. I did not come to bring peace, but a sword. 35 For I have come to turn“‘a man against his father, a daughter against her mother, a daughter-in-law against her mother-in-law—36 a man’s enemies will be the members of his own household.’ 

Why is this? 

Because when Jesus is introduced to a family or household, everyone may not believe in Him at once. Sometimes there is division in families over spiritual things (choice of church, giving, etc.). 

Don’t be discouraged because there is dysfunction in your family, job or ministry. 

What matters is how you FUNCTION IN THE DYSFUNCTION. 

Make sure YOU are grounded in the Word of God. 

Work to be a peacemaker and a peace keeper (Matthew 5:9).

And most importantly pray for AGREEMENT and ONENESS in CHRIST just as He did in John 17:21-23

Make this your daily prayer during your quiet time with God, and pray with your spouse for agreement in your marriage. 

Call your family together and pray for agreement….EVERY DAY. 

Don’t feel that you are disqualified by God because of dysfunction in your family or group…just make a commitment through God to FUNCTION IN THE DYSFUNCTION! 

Peace and agreement to you and yours!

BE BLESSTIFIED! 

YOUR RELATIONSHIP IS ONLY AS STRONG AS WHAT YOU ARE WILLING TO FORGIVE…

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Think about your relationship with your husband or your wife, your parents, your siblings, your friends…the people who are important to you.

Have they ever done anything to hurt you? Now, have you ever done anything to hurt them? If you are still in relationship with them, then either two things have happened. Either you’ve hurt and forgiving one another or, you are living with a grudge over…something.

And, if you are living with a grudge then you are putting your relationship at risk because that grudge gives the enemy a foothold to gain influence in that relationship.

Now, think of those relationships that you are no longer involved in. A broken marriage. Siblings who don’t speak. Friends who have become enemies. There is one reason those relationships no longer exist…something happened that you can’t forgive.

Nothing deep here, must a quick reminder. If the relationship is important to you, be ready to forgive. Because whatever it is that you feel you could never forgive, most if not all of the time, that’s what the enemy will use to destroy your relationship.

Remember this…


Your relationships are only as strong as what you are willing to forgive.


So, not only should you be ready to forgive, but if the relationship is important to you, be ready to move on and forgive without an apology. For more on this, read HOW TO MOVE FORWARD WITHOUT AN APOLOGY ( 8 TIPS)…

Proverbs 19:11 (NKJV)

11 The discretion of a man makes him slow to anger,
And his glory isto overlook a transgression.

BE BLESSTIFIED!

WHY ASKING GOD OVER & OVER DOES NOT IMPLY A LACK OF FAITH (HOLY HUZTPAH)…

I can’t count how many times that I’ve heard Christians imply that asking God in prayer over and over again implies there’s a lack of faith…

They make statements like, “If you trust God, you will pray and then forget about it.”

But, that implication is in direct contradiction to what Yeshua the Messiah taught us.

Remember the illustration Jesus gave His disciples immediately after the Model Prayer Luke Chapter 11…

Luke 11:5-10 (CJB)

5 He also said to them, “Suppose one of you has a friend; and you go to him in the middle of the night and say to him, ‘Friend, lend me three loaves of bread, 6 because a friend of mine who has been travelling has just arrived at my house, and I have nothing for him to eat.’ 7 Now the one inside may answer, ‘Don’t bother me! The door is already shut, my children are with me in bed — I can’t get up to give you anything!’ 8 But I tell you, even if he won’t get up because the man is his friend, yet because of the man’s hutzpah he will get up and give him as much as he needs.

9 “Moreover, I myself say to you: keep asking, and it will be given to you; keep seeking, and you will find; keep knocking, and the door will be opened to you. 10 For everyone who goes on asking receives; and he who goes on seeking finds; and to him who continues knocking, the door will be opened.

Verse number 8 confirms that God wants us to pray with ‘HOLY HUZTPAH’ (the Hebrew word for extreme self-confidence or audacity).

God insists that we show persistence mixed with humility.

So, if you’re trusting God for something, continue to ask Him believing you will receive it IF IT’S HIS WILL…

James 1:5-7 (NKJV)

5 (A)If any of you lacks wisdom, (B)let him ask of God, who gives to all liberally and without reproach, and (C)it will be given to him. 6 (D)But let him ask in faith, with no doubting, for he who doubts is like a wave of the sea driven and tossed by the wind. 7 For let not that man suppose that he will receive anything from the Lord;

Have the same audacity that a child does when he or she keeps asking for something that they need or sometimes want from a parent.

“CAN I HAVE IT?”

“CAN I HAVE IT?”

“CAN I HAVE IT?”

Prat with HOLY HUTZPAH!

BE BLESSTIFIED!

WHY YOU SHOULD ALWAYS BE UNDERPAID…

How much are you worth? Can you really quantify your value to…

Your job?

Your family?

Your church?

Your relationships?

Your world?

God has created us and gifted all wonderfully and uniquely. No one else can be as good at being you than you!

Psalm 139:13-14 (NKJV)

13 For You formed my inward parts;
You 
[a]covered me in my mother’s womb.
14 I will praise You, for [b]I am fearfully and wonderfully made;
Marvelous are Your works,
And 
that my soul knows very well.

It’s our responsibility to recognize, nurture and perfect what God has placed inside of us. And to use it not only to sustain our lives, but to build God’s kingdom and make the world a better place.

Luke 12:48  (NKJV)

48 But he who did not know, yet committed things deserving of stripes, shall be beaten with few. For everyone to whom much is given, from him much will be required; and to whom much has been committed, of him they will ask the more.

God has created us all with great value!

So much so, that no one should ever be able to pay us what we’re worth.

How much money do you make? What’s your salary? What’s your hourly wage?

Do you feel that’s ALL your worth?

Do you feel that’s ALL you bring to the table?

We should all be irreplaceable…

Not only in our job descriptions but also in the intangibles. There should be a void any time we leave a workplace, relationship, church etc.

Your energy, positivity, love…your very presence should be missed. You should bring those things that can’t be trained or taught….

Those things that go beyond experience, such as being the person everyone looks to in a crisis.

Even if they can replace YOU, they should never be able to replace WHAT YOU DO!

Anytime you feel you aren’t bringing enough to the table…YOU AREN’T.

We’re placed here to be God’s representatives in every environment and relationship we occupy. God blesses us to bring glory to God through the anointing on our lives, the gifts He’s giving us and the seeds we sow.

And that’s priceless.

Now, are you being underpaid?

BE BLESSTIFIED!

WHEN WE TEACH OUR CHILDREN THAT SPORTS IS MORE IMPORTANT THAN WORSHIP…

Whether it be that you worship on Saturday or SONday, many parents are forced to make a choice if their children participate on a sports or cheer team.

When games and tournaments are scheduled at the same time as worship, during sports seasons, parents have to make the choice as to whether they should tell the coach, “We can’t make the game”, or to fulfill God’s expectation of regular worship…

Hebrews 10:25 (NKJV)

25 not forsaking the assembling of ourselves together, as is the manner of some, but exhorting one another, and so much the more as you see the Day approaching.

Children are a heritage to the Lord, and it’s parent’s responsibility to teach and model for them Godly choices.

Psalm 127:3 (NKJV)

Behold, children are a heritage from the Lord,
The fruit of the womb is a reward.

Proverbs 22:6 (NKJV)

Train up a child in the way he should go,
[a]And when he is old he will not depart from it.

When we choose allowing our children to PLAY IN A GAME during worship where we have committed to worship the Lord, that choice is showing our children which is the priority in our lives.

It’s setting an example for them to follow with their children.

Too many people expect God to ‘understand’ or excuses when we have made decided not to honor His day of rest. NOTICE HOW MUCH IT PISSES GOD OFF WHEN WE REFUSE TO REST…

Too many times we expect God to in a sense ‘worship’ or honorour excuses and priorities. His expectations haven’t changed.

Anything we prioritize over what God has told us to do is an idol.

Of course, many parents are going to say, “We’re not under bondage, we’re under grace”, but a ball game does not qualify as an ‘ox in a ditch’..,

Luke 14:5-6 (NKJV)

Then He answered them, saying, “Which of you, having a [a]donkey or an ox that has fallen into a pit, will not immediately pull him out on the Sabbath day?” And they could not answer Him regarding these things.

The fact is, that many times we ‘place an ox in the ditch’ by the choices that we make. God isn’t going to accept our excuses,

Even though we have to live in a society that may not be centered around God…

Even though many people don’t believe in God…

He doesn’t change His expectations of those who do.

He expects us to be different…

1 John 2:15-16 (NKJV)

15 Do not love the world or the things in the world. If anyone loves the world, the love of the Father is not in him. 16 For all that is in the world—the lust of the flesh, the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life—is not of the Father but is of the world.

1 Peter 2:9 (NKJV)

But you are a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, His own special people, that you may proclaim the praises of Him who called you out of darkness into His marvelous light;

Even though we’re under grace, the fact that we stop to worship and rest once every seven days is a sign to the world that we are His…

Ezekiel 20:20 (NKJV)

20 hallow My Sabbaths, and they will be a sign between Me and you, that you may know that I am the Lord your God.’

When Yeshua the Messiah was healing on the day of rest, He was doing the work of God. That doesn’t compare to playing a game. A game simply isn’t that important to God.

Consider this. If a parent tells their child to take out the trash at 8pm, but they decide not to do so, would the parent accept the excuse, I’M UNDER GRACE?

Why should God be any different?

God will hold us accountable for how we model relationship with God…

Deuteronomy 6:6-8 (NKJV)

“And these words which I command you today shall be in your heart. You shall teach them diligently to your children, and shall talk of them when you sit in your house, when you walk by the way, when you lie down, and when you rise up. You shall bind them as a sign on your hand, and they shall be as frontlets between your eyes.

BE BLESSTIFIED!

5 REASONS I DON’T WANT TO BE CALLED ‘REVEREND’…

I was ordained into the ministry back in 1996, and I take my assignment very seriously.

Even though I was ordained in a Baptist church I prefer to be simply referred to as a Disciple of Christ (Yeshua the Messiah, Jesus).

There are many titles by which people address ministers, one of which is Reverend. Personally, I prefer NOT to be called by that title. Here are 5 reasons why.

1. HOLY AND REVEREND IS ‘HIS’ NAME (IMPLYING TO BE EQUAL TO GOD IS BLASPHEMY)

Psalm 111:9 (KJV)

He sent redemption unto his people: he hath commanded his covenant for ever: holy and reverend is his name

Psalm number 119 in the King James Version states that God’s name is holy and ‘reverend’. The word reverend in the passage comes from the Hebrew word ‘Yare’, which means to fear, revere, be afraid, to stand in awe of, be awed. Neither I nor my name are not to be feared, revered, afraid or in awe of…that is reserved for God. I also know that one definition of blasphemy is putting oneself equal to God, of which is what the Pharisees often falsely accused the Lord. I prefer not for my name nor myself to be made in anyway imply equality to God…especially as a religious title.


2. GOD WARNED US ABOUT RELIGIOUS TITLES

Yeshua hurled a long list of rebukes and woes at the religious leaders in Matthew 23, one of which directly addressed religious titles…

Matthew 23:6-11 (NKJV)

They love the [a]best places at feasts, the best seats in the synagogues, greetings in the marketplaces, and to be called by men, ‘Rabbi, Rabbi.’ But you, do not be called ‘Rabbi’; for One is your [b]Teacher, [c]the Christ, and you are all brethren. Do not call anyone on earth your father; for One is your Father, He who is in heaven. 10 And do not be called teachers; for One is your Teacher, the Christ. 11 But he who is greatest among you shall be your servant.

The Lord clearly rebukes the religious leaders concerning being called RABBI, FATHER, or even TEACHER (which could be equated to Dr. today) however we know that even though REVEREND wasn’t a religious title of that day, but originated in the Catholic church that it is still within the context of that rebuke. I have heard some people contend, we call our male parents father, but that’s not a religious title. No matter how we may try to excuse or justify it, it’s still easier to just leave it alone.


3. THE APOSTLES ONLY REFERRED TO ONE ANOTHER BY NAME

When you read the letters of the Apostles, you will notice how they referred to themselves, one another and other elders and church leaders only by name. They didn’t refer to each other as Apostle, Rabbi, Father, Pope or any other title, but simply by name…

2 Peter 3:15 (NKJV)

15 and consider that the longsuffering of our Lord is salvation—as also our beloved brother Paul, according to the wisdom given to him, has written to you,

James 1:1 (NKJV)

James, a bondservant of God and of the Lord Jesus Christ,

To the twelve tribes which are scattered abroad:

Greetings.

Timothy 1 (NKJV)

Paul, an apostle of Jesus Christ, by the commandment of God our Savior and the Lord Jesus Christ, our hope,

To Timothy, a true son in the faith:

Grace, mercy, and peace from God our Father and Jesus Christ our Lord.

Titus 1:4 (NKJV)

To Titus, a true son in our common faith:

Grace, mercy, and peace from God the Father and [a]the Lord Jesus Christ our Savior.

Revelation 1:9 (NKJV)

I, John, [a]both your brother and companion in the tribulation and kingdom and patience of Jesus Christ, was on the island that is called Patmos for the word of God and for the testimony of Jesus Christ.

I could go on and on, but I invite you to please go back and read through the epistles and notice how the apostles referred to one another and other church leaders…by name only, or brother.


4. THE APOSTLES REFUSED TO BE ‘WORSHIPED’

Acts 14:11-15 (NKJV)

11 Now when the people saw what Paul had done, they raised their voices, saying in the Lycaonian language, “The gods have come down to us in the likeness of men!” 12 And Barnabas they called [a]Zeus, and Paul, [b]Hermes, because he was the chief speaker. 13 Then the priest of Zeus, whose temple was in front of their city, brought oxen and garlands to the gates, intending to sacrifice with the multitudes.

14 But when the apostles Barnabas and Paul heard this, they tore their clothes and ran in among the multitude, crying out 15 and saying, “Men, why are you doing these things? We also are men with the same nature as you, and preach to you that you should turn from these useless things to the living God, who made the heaven, the earth, the sea, and all things that are in them,

Acts 10:25-26 (NKJV)

25 As Peter was coming in, Cornelius met him and fell down at his feet and worshiped him. 26 But Peter lifted him up, saying, “Stand up; I myself am also a man.”

Even though the bible says that honor should be given to those who are ministers of the Gospel, there is still a thin line between honor and worship. It’s very easy to allow people to ‘feed our egos’ if we aren’t careful. It’s easy for honor and respect to morph into worship.


5. THE ANGELS DIDN’T ALLOW MEN TO WORSHIP THEM

When John received The Revelation of Yeshua he was in such great awe of the angle that he attempted to bow down to him, but the angel quickly told him NO…

Revelation 19:10 (NKJV)

10 And I fell at his feet to worship him. But he said to me, “See that you do not do that! I am your fellow servant, and of your brethren who have the testimony of Jesus. Worship God! For the testimony of Jesus is the spirit of prophecy.”

Revelation 22:9 (NKJV)

9 Then he said to me, “See that you do not do that. [a]For I am your fellow servant, and of your brethren the prophets, and of those who keep the words of this book. Worship God.”

Yes, the bible says that elders are worthy of double honor, but that doesn’t mean that we should accept that what is reserved for God.

1 Timothy 5:17 (NKJV)

17 Let the elders who rule well be counted worthy of double honor, especially those who labor in the word and doctrine.

As I said earlier, as much as some leaders can justify being called REVEREND or being put on a pedestal…I would rather just leave it alone.

When you put preachers, pastors, or any leader on a pedestal, you can be discouraged when we prove prove how human we are…when we prove we don’t have it all together. EVEN THE MOST EFFECTIVE LEADERS DON’T ‘HAVE IT ALL TOGETHER’…

What do you think?

BE BLESSTIFIED!

WHEN IT MAKES NO SENSE TO BE A ‘NO-NONSENSE LEADER…

Many people have a distorted perspective of strength and leadership. Unfortunately, some equate being hard, unyielding, and difficult to strong leadership and assertiveness. In fact, many of the attributes that define God’s spirit and character are considered by many to be weakness…

Galatians 5:22-23 (NKJV)

22 But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, 23 [a]gentleness, self-control. Against such there is no law.

James 3:17 (NKJV)

17 But the wisdom that is from above is first pure, then peaceable, gentle, willing to yield, full of mercy and good fruits, without partiality and without hypocrisy.

Oftentimes, leaders will pride themselves on being ‘NO-NONSENSE’ making assertions such as…

“People know better than to come to me with foolishness!”

“I can’t stand and will not tolerate incompetence!”

“Your emergency isn’t my problem!”

Many even brag that, “My people don’t like me!”

The truth is that every NO-NONSENSE leader is sometimes guilty of NONSENSE themselves.

They too need compassion.

They too need grace.

An unapproachable leader limits his or her ability to lead if people are afraid to come to them with mistakes or problems trying to avoid ‘their wrath’.

Limits are placed on leadership when people are afraid to tell the truth.

When people are afraid to come to you with their mistakes, they hide problems and even protect themselves with lies…setting up a ‘time bomb’ that will definitely explode in the future.

An unapproachable leader is the main ingredient in the recipe for a toxic culture, denying himself or herself of vital information because people don’t feel comfortable being honest about what they’ve done or how they feel.

Real servant leadership isn’t about daily feeding one’s ego and reputation, but making those whom you serve feel comfortable enough to come to you with their NONSENSE.

From president to principle to pastor to parent…it makes no sense to be no-nonsense.

BE BLESSTIFIED!

HOW EVERYONE IN AMERICA CAN BE EQUAL & STILL NOT ‘EXPERIENCE AMERICA’ THE SAME…

It’s sometimes difficult for many Americans to see how everyone can be equal, but still not have the same ‘American Experience’. Many times they then judge others based on how THEY FEEL OTHERS should REACT to how they perceive their ‘American experience’. But, if we think about the fact that everyone doesn’t experience the organizations for which we work in the same way…it becomes more clear.

Before becoming an educator, for a decade, I worked for a great, very successful Fortune 300 company. This company is the source of a great standard of living for thousands of employees. It was a great company, just as America is a great country. Although, everyone in the company was ‘equal’ …they didn’t ‘experience’ the company the same.

I was a Marketing Manager, and everyone who was at manager level and above received an annual bonus based on company performance. Because of the industry, this company performed well in a ‘good economy’, but performed even better in a ‘bad economy’ (It still does, the stock price is incredible).

Employees who were below manager level worked just as hard, if not harder than many of those who enjoyed receiving the bonuses. They also played just as great a role, if not greater, in reaching the goals that resulted in those bonuses… in much the same way teachers aren’t respected as experts (by ‘experts’ outside the classroom) , even though they are on the ‘front lines’.

But, these frontline workers in that Fortune 300 company weren’t (and aren’t) allowed to share in those financial rewards.

During company meetings, when the leadership tried to ‘inspire’ everyone on every ‘level’ to push harder to meet goals…those who didn’t receive the bonus had less incentive to ‘work harder’ so others can reap a greater reward. It’s unfair for those who are higher in hierarchy to judge their co-workers as lazy and less dedicated because they don’t enjoy the systemic rewards system equally.

It’s clear that even though everyone worked for the same great company, that everyone didn’t ‘EXPERIENCE’ the company in the same way.

Think about your company…organization…school district. What’s your role? Do people higher in the hierarchy enjoy more perks…prestige…access…respect…compensation…rewards? Does every worker experience your organization the same way?

Of course not. The truth is that some people in every organization are treated better because of their role…no matter how much actual value they bring to the organization.

In much the same way, because of race, culture, social status, academic achievement, etc., everyone doesn’t experience America the same way.

Unfortunately, some people can’t see or relate to this unless they feel their ‘status’, ‘rewards’ or level of ‘access’ and ‘freedom’ are being threatened.

If you don’t want anyone judging you based on how you react to what you perceive as unfairness in your work environment, then don’t judge others based on their perception of how they experience America.

Matthew 7:12 (NLT)

12 “Do to others whatever you would like them to do to you. This is the essence of all that is taught in the law and the prophets.

BE BLESSTIFIED!

FOR THE PEOPLE WHO GOT THROUGH THEIR DARKEST DAYS WITHOUT DRUGS, ALCOHOL, OR ________….

“For those who overcame their darkest days without turning to darkness.”

There are countless people who have used drugs, alcohol and other forms of personal abuse to help them cope and ‘escape’ from the severe storms of life. And, we find ourselves often celebrating those who have climbed out of the abyss of personal abuse successfully…as we should. Doing so is a great accomplishment.

Disappointment…

Depression…

Betrayal…

Loneliness…

Chronic Pain…

Abuse…

There are countless factors that have led people to turn to drugs and alcohol to both confront and avoid the demons that are attacking them emotionally, spiritually, and physically.

This piece is not meant to belittle or diminish those who have conquered their drug and alcohol demons, but to ALSO celebrate those who have gone through life’s darkest days without turning to drugs or alcohol.

Do you know anyone like that? Has it been you? Is that you now?

Rather than turning to drugs or alcohol, many have turned to the therapy of…

Good memories…

Good music…

Creativity…

Family…

Friends…

And of course their faith in God through Yeshua the Messiah (Jesus Christ).

It’s easy to say, “Just give it to God”, but how do you do that?

1 Peter 5:7 (NKJV)

Cast all your anxiety on him because he cares for you.

Part of growing in relationship with God is learning to…

1. First tell Him, “I can’t handle this alone, please help me!”

2. Pray for the strength to carry the emotional, physical and spiritual load that God has assigned to you.

3. Realize that you may never truly have ‘closure’. Accept that you will have to deal with the physical and emotional pain for the rest of your life.

4. Accept that some thoughts will never stop making you feel horrible, even decades in the future.

5. And most of all realize that your real battle isn’t physical. It’s bigger than the disappointments, depression, betrayal, loneliness, abuse, and sometimes chronic pain. Those demons aren’t just figurative, but literal…

Ephesians 6:12 (NKJV)

12 For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of [a]the darkness of this age, against spiritual hosts of wickedness in the heavenly places.

2 Corinthians 10:4 (NKJV)

For the weapons of our warfare are not [a]carnal but mighty in God for pulling down strongholds,

Sometimes we find ourselves trying to have closure… trying to get past ‘it’… trying to erase the memories and pain…

When we should be asking God for the strength to deal with those dark moments.

Is it easy? No!

Has everyone mastered it? Of course not. Even many of the ‘spiritually mature’ haven’t.

But, to those who have decided that they would not succumb to the temptation of drugs, alcohol, promiscuity, or other forms of personal abuse to deal with their personal ‘hell’…

You lay awake at night…

You cried tears that no one saw…

You went to work…

You cooked dinner…

You smiled through your pain…

You ignored phone calls…

You put one foot in front of the other…

You prayed…

You studied His word…

You cried out to Him…

You trusted Him more than yourself…

You discovered what, “I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me” really means.

If that’s you…

WE CELEBRATE YOU!

Please share this with someone you know who has overcome their dark days without turning to darkness.

BE BLESSTIFIED!

WHEN ‘SO-CALLED FRIENDS’ SAY, “HEY! I HAVE AN OPPORTUNITY FOR YOU…”

I admit this is a pet peeve of mine.

Has this ever happened to you?

They may be a past classmate…co-worker…cousin… or acquaintance.

They may be a ‘FRIEND’ or ‘FOLLOWER’ on social media who SEES YOU, but never interacts or reacts to anything you post, share or create.

They may be someone on the outer fringes of your ‘circle’, but they never really have anything to do with you.

They may be someone from your past who willingly drifted away.

But, they suddenly reach out to you…

Out of the blue they message you…

Unexpectedly someone let’s you know they want to talk to you.

It’s usually something like this…

“Hey! How’s it been going?”

“Your name came up the other day!”

“We need to catch up!”

“How’s your family?”

“I noticed your post the other day!”

They really could care less about how it’s going; catching up; your family; and they’ve intentionally ignored your posts and accomplishments UNTIL THEY WANTED SOMETHING FROM YOU.

They may have started an insurance agency…

They may have gotten into financial planning…

They may have launched their own business…

They may be in sales…

It may even be the latest multi-level marketing scheme.

And, your name crossed their mind as a possible prospect… client… or customer.

Calling out someone else’s pettiness isn’t petty.

Real friends don’t take advantage of your kindness and insult your intelligence with the pretend-to-care questions that proceed a sales pitch. If you want to be friends…cool, but don’t insult their intelligence trying to get into their pockets like a drunk guy trying to get into a woman’s underwear.

Even though Jesus recognized the value in being shrewd in business, there’s a difference in being shrewd and being crude.

Luke 16:3-9 (NKJV)

“The manager thought to himself, ‘Now what? My boss has fired me. I don’t have the strength to dig ditches, and I’m too proud to beg. Ah, I know how to ensure that I’ll have plenty of friends who will give me a home when I am fired.’ “So he invited each person who owed money to his employer to come and discuss the situation. He asked the first one, ‘How much do you owe him?’ The man replied, ‘I owe him 800 gallons of olive oil.’ So the manager told him, ‘Take the bill and quickly change it to 400 gallons.[a]“‘And how much do you owe my employer?’ he asked the next man. ‘I owe him 1,000 bushels of wheat,’ was the reply. ‘Here,’ the manager said, ‘take the bill and change it to 800 bushels.[b]“The rich man had to admire the dishonest rascal for being so shrewd. And it is true that the children of this world are more shrewd in dealing with the world around them than are the children of the light. Here’s the lesson: Use your worldly resources to benefit others and make friends. Then, when your possessions are gone, they will welcome you to an eternal home.[c]

Have you been annoyingly prospected? Or have you done it yourself?

Save your so-called opportunity for those who are really in your circle and strangers. If you really cared, They would have heard from you before now…please walk on by.

BE BLESSTIFIED!

WHY YOU SHOULD THANK GOD FOR THE SIDE OF THE DEVIL THAT HE RESTRAINS FROM YOU…

Throughout the history of the world people have committed horrible atrocities to one another.

In His sovereignty and for His ultimate purpose, whether it be for example or judgement, if you believe in God, just as with Job, you have to accept that God allowed those atrocities that were provoked by the devil to happen.

The devil has to submit to God’s power, and he gets no access unless God allows it.

Job 1:12 NKJV

And the LORD said to Satan, “Behold, all that he has is in your power; only do not lay a hand on his person.” So Satan went out from the presence of the LORD.

Even today, the most vile, evil and remorseless people are being influenced by the devil, the adversary…Satan.


There’s a world of evil, crime, oppression and opposition that many people like me only know about from the news or movies.

So, when we get upset at how the devil is allowed to frustrate our lives in many ways…our families… our jobs and careers… our finances… we must stop and thank God there are horrible levels of evil that God doesn’t permit the devil to release into our lives.

This isn’t meant to diminish any level of resistance someone may be facing right now, but for most of us… it could always be worse.


Stop right now and thank God for how He restrains the devil and His emissaries from your life.

Stop and thank God for YOUR angels who minister to you and fight for you in both the physical and spiritual worlds.

Hebrews 1:13-14 (NKJV)

13 But to which of the angels has He ever said:

(A)“Sit at My right hand,
Till I make Your enemies Your footstool”?

14 (B)Are they not all ministering spirits sent forth to minister for those who will (C)inherit salvation?


And, remember to release prayers for those who are under a more severe level of attack than you.

1 Peter 5:8 (NKJV)

8 Be [a]sober, be [b]vigilant; [c]because your adversary the devil walks about like a roaring lion, seeking whom he may devour.

2 Thessalonians 2:7 (NKJV)

7 For (A)the [a]mystery of lawlessness is already at work; only [b]He who now restrains will do so until He is taken out of the way.

WHEN ‘SO-CALLED FRIENDS’ SAY, “HEY! I HAVE AN OPPORTUNITY FOR YOU…”

I admit this is a pet peeve of mine.

Has this ever happened to you?

They may be a past classmate…co-worker…cousin… or acquaintance.

They may be a ‘FRIEND’ or ‘FOLLOWER’ on social media who SEES YOU, but never interacts or reacts to anything you post, share or create.

They may be someone on the outer fringes of your ‘circle’, but they never really have anything to do with you.

They may be someone from your past who willingly drifted away.

But, they suddenly reach out to you…

Out of the blue they message you…

Unexpectedly someone let’s you know they want to talk to you.

It’s usually something like this…

“Hey! How’s it been going?”

“Your name came up the other day!”

“We need to catch up!”

“How’s your family?”

“I noticed your post the other day!”

They really could care less about how it’s going; catching up; your family; and they’ve intentionally ignored your posts and accomplishments UNTIL THEY WANTED SOMETHING FROM YOU.

They may have started an insurance agency…

They may have gotten into financial planning…

They may have launched their own business…

They may be in sales…

It may even be the latest multi-level marketing scheme.

And, your name crossed their mind as a possible prospect… client… or customer.

Calling out someone else’s pettiness isn’t petty.

Real friends don’t take advantage of your kindness and insult your intelligence with the pretend-to-care questions that proceed a sales pitch. If you want to be friends…cool, but don’t insult their intelligence trying to get into their pockets like a drunk guy trying to get into a woman’s underwear.

Even though Jesus recognized the value in being shrewd in business, there’s a difference in being shrewd and being crude.

Luke 16:3-9 (NKJV)

“The manager thought to himself, ‘Now what? My boss has fired me. I don’t have the strength to dig ditches, and I’m too proud to beg. Ah, I know how to ensure that I’ll have plenty of friends who will give me a home when I am fired.’ “So he invited each person who owed money to his employer to come and discuss the situation. He asked the first one, ‘How much do you owe him?’ The man replied, ‘I owe him 800 gallons of olive oil.’ So the manager told him, ‘Take the bill and quickly change it to 400 gallons.[a]“‘And how much do you owe my employer?’ he asked the next man. ‘I owe him 1,000 bushels of wheat,’ was the reply. ‘Here,’ the manager said, ‘take the bill and change it to 800 bushels.[b]“The rich man had to admire the dishonest rascal for being so shrewd. And it is true that the children of this world are more shrewd in dealing with the world around them than are the children of the light. Here’s the lesson: Use your worldly resources to benefit others and make friends. Then, when your possessions are gone, they will welcome you to an eternal home.[c]

Have you been annoyingly prospected? Or have you done it yourself?

Save your so-called opportunity for those who are really in your circle and strangers. If you really cared, They would have heard from you before now…please walk on by.

BE BLESSTIFIED!

HOW TO MAKE THE MOST OF YOUR REGRETS…

wp-1489325386452.jpgWe all have them…regrets.

We regret things we’ve done…

Things we’ve said…

Things we’ve thought.

Even our regrets are an aspect of being created in God’s image.


Genesis 6:6 (NIV)

The Lord regretted that he had made human beings on the earth, and his heart was deeply troubled.

 The word regret here, according to Strong’s Concordance, means to sigh, groan or ease oneself.

God’s ‘regret’ wasn’t lamenting over a mistake He made, because He makes no mistakes, but rather His comforting Himself as He progressed with His plan that eventually led to man’s salvation.


God gave us every emotion for a reason…even those we consider negative.

He gave us anger to lead to passion in order to make positive change.

He gave us hate to have hatred for evil and sinful behavior…not people.

And, he gave us REGRET to be seeds to repentance rather than depression.

Sometimes when we think of those sinful, shameful, irresponsible or foolish things that we have said, done and thought, we can allow those thoughts to consume us. If we aren’t careful, they can lead to depression or isolation. They can lead to behavior that not only causes harm to ourselves, but also to those we love.

But, God gave us regret to help us avoid making the same mistakes.

USE YOUR REGRETS!

You can use your regrets to PROGRESS you rather than DEPRESS you.

Let your regrets lead to the Godly sorrow that leads to repentance…

2 Corinthians 7:10 (NKJV)

10 For godly sorrow produces repentance leading to salvation, not to be regretted; but the sorrow of the world produces death.

Even if you are dealing with the consequences of what you’re regretting, if God has given you breath in your body…that’s grace to make things right and avoid making the same mistakes again.


RECOGNIZE that you can’t go back in time and change what you regret.

REPENT of those thoughts, words, actions, and behaviors and avoid putting yourself in the positions or even frames of mind that would lead to repeating what you regret.

RESOLVE in your mind that you will not allow yourself to ‘go there’ again.

REJOICE in the fact that when you truly repent, that even if others haven’t, God has forgiven you and has given you grace to go on in peace.

Don’t let your regrets overwhelm or cripple you. Let them be brief, temporary moments that you use to make yourself better.

BE BLESSTIFIED!

 

 

 

 

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