WHEN GOD USES THE ‘N-WORD’…

wp-1491849985989.

God has said it to me many times.


The ‘N-WORD’


And I must admit that it’s very rare that I like it.

It’s very hard for me to hear.

Sometimes, I think it’s not fair.

I will think to myself, “You didn’t say the ‘N-WORD’ to him…or to her!”

I know that God is sovereign, and He can say whatever He wants to say.

I know He loves me…knows what’s best for me…and everything He does is always working for my good.

I know He knows me better than I know myself.

Yes, I trust Him, and I submit to His perfect will for my life.

But, that doesn’t make it hurt any less when God decides to respond to me with…


The ‘N-WORD’


Sometimes I reason within myself, He really didn’t mean that.

Sometimes I will keep pushing, trying to force a different response…

But, still His answer remains to be…


The ‘N-WORD’


As much as He loves me and gives me all of what I need and some of what I want…

Sometimes God has to say…


The ‘N-WORD’ to me


As much as I don’t like it, I still love Him and trust Him.

I take peace in the fact that His grace is always sufficient for me.

How do you react…

When God tells you “NO”?

2 Corinthians 12: 8-9 (NKJV)

 Concerning this thing I pleaded with the Lord three times that it might depart from me. And He said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for My strength is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore, most gladly I will rather boast in my infirmities, that the power of Christ may rest upon me.

 BE BLESSTIFIED!

WHY ‘GROWING APART’ IS NOT AN EXCUSE FOR DIVORCE…

wp-image-5514092jpg.jpg

God intends for marriage to be a lifelong commitment between a man and a woman, no matter how much our modern society makes and accepts excuses to ‘get out of it’. Especially what we call ‘irreconcilable differences’ or ‘we’re just growing apart’.

Malachi 2:16  (NKJV)

16 “For the Lord God of Israel says
That He hates divorce,
For it covers one’s garment with violence,”
Says the Lord of hosts.
“Therefore take heed to your spirit,
That you do not deal treacherously.”

 Matthew 19:4-8  (NKJV)

And He answered and said to them, “Have you not read that He who [a]made them at the beginning ‘made them male and female,’ and said, ‘For this reason a man shall leave his father and mother and be joined to his wife, and the two shall become one flesh’? So then, they are no longer two but one flesh. Therefore, what God has joined together, let not man separate.”They said to Him, “Why then did Moses command to give a certificate of divorce, and to put her away?” He said to them, “Moses, because of the hardness of your hearts, permitted you to divorce your wives, but from the beginning it was not so.


God knows that no matter how much you love one another, that no two people will be the same after 10, 20, 30, 40, 50 plus years of marriage. It’s impossible. Yes, you will grow apart in some areas of your lives. But, that doesn’t have to come between you.


Think about this. If God expected the arranged marriages to last in the bible days, He expects us to stay with the spouse that we choose.

How can we be ministers of reconciliation for God’s Kingdom if we can’t even reconcile the differences in our homes?

2 Corinthians 5:18-19  (NKJV)

18 Now all things are of God, who has reconciled us to Himself through Jesus Christ, and has given us the ministry of reconciliation, 19 that is, that God was in Christ reconciling the world to Himself, not [a]imputing their trespasses to them, and has committed to us the word of reconciliation.

In the words of Al Green, “Let’s stay together”

Here are a few more of my articles on Godly Marriage:

THE REAL, BOTTOM-LINE REASON MARRIAGES FAIL…

MARRIAGE: 3 WAYS TO TELL YOU WERE MEANT TO BE TOGETHER…

WHEN GOD EXPECTS US TO FORGIVE ADULTERY (CHEATING ON GOD)…

IS GOD IN AN ABUSIVE RELATIONSHIP WITH YOU?

MARRIAGE ADVICE: IT’S YOUR DIFFERENCES THAT MAKE YOU A PERFECT FIT…

Godly Marriage: THE BLESSING IN WHEN YOU’RE NOT ‘IN THE MOOD’ AT THE SAME TIME…

THE HOLINESS OF WELL-TIMED ROMANCE IN MARRIAGE…

Godly Marriage: THE BLESSING IN WHEN YOU’RE NOT ‘IN THE MOOD’ AT THE SAME TIME…

THERE WILL ALWAYS BE THINGS YOU HATE ABOUT THE PEOPLE YOU LOVE…

GODLY MARRIAGE: HOW SEX IS SUBMISSION AND HONOR PERFECTED (Graphic but Holy)…

ONLY ‘GODLY SEX’ IS GOOD SEX…

PROOF THAT GOD DOESN’T FORBID ‘RACE MIXING’, BUT DOES FORBID FAITH MIXING (in case you missed it)…

GODLY MARRIAGE: YOU CAN’T GET ROMANTIC WITH A HYMNAL…

(1) ONE AMAZING, POWERFUL, SIMPLE TIP TO REJUVENATE YOUR MARRIAGE…#30yearsstrong

IF THE ‘BIG O’ WAS TOO BIG (GOD’S WISDOM)…

BE BLESSTIFIED!

HAVE YOU EVER NOTICED THAT HEALING HURTS?

wp-1478012682343.jpg

Have you ever noticed that many times in order to be healed physically, we must endure some pain?

Sometimes we have to have our skin PIERCED by needles.

Sometimes we must endure being CUT open with a scalpel.

How many times have you noticed an itch or irritation as a cut or sore heals?

Medicines can taste unpleasant.

Pills can be hard to swallow.

Most prescriptions have some uncomfortable side effects.

Even emotionally as we process the pain of disappointments and losses in our lives, we endure some emotional and psychological pain.

Yes, time heals wounds, but as we heal…we endure pain. 

If we think about it, it’s only fair because Jesus Christ, our Lord and Savior, endured such great pain for us. 

Isaiah 53:5

But He was wounded for our transgressions, He was bruised for our iniquities; The chastisement for our peace was upon Him, AND BY HIS STRIPES WE ARE HEALED.

Hebrews 9:22

And according to the law almost all things are purified with blood, and without shedding of blood there is no remission.

Romans 15:3

For even Christ did not please Himself; but as it is written, “The reproaches of those who reproached You fell on Me.

It is no surprise that what takes place in the physical realm is a shadow of what takes place in the spiritual realm.

Hebrews 8:5

who serve the copy and shadow of the heavenly things, as Moses was divinely instructed when he was about to make the tabernacle. For He said, “See that you make all things according to the pattern shown you on the mountain.”

Take a moment to thank our Lord for enduring such shame and pain for us.

The next time that you need…

A shot…

Surgery…

Or experience a painful memory just look at it as if we are sharing in Christ’s sufferings and remember…HEALING HURTS.

BE BLESSTIFIED!

HOW PRINCE INSPIRES ME AS A CHRISTIAN (June 7, 1958 – April 21, 2016)…

wp-1481159868248.jpg

Prince’s music is definitely a huge part of the soundtrack of my life, especially my younger days. I enjoy the genius of his artistry..He wasn’t just a singer, but a singer/performer/entertainer/entrepreneur/activist/philanthropist. His influence on music, fashion and culture is undeniable.

It’s also very evident that Prince, as we all do, had a strong spiritual side and a strong carnal side. He wrote songs that were sexually explicit as well as songs that were beautiful and spiritual, such as “God”, which was the B-Side to “Purple Rain” (for younger readers who may not know, a B-Side was another song on the opposite side of the single of a vinyl record). In fact, sometimes Prince was a spiritual paradox…again, as we all have been.

The purpose of this post isn’t to judge Prince’s spirituality or his carnality, but how both inspire me.

Many of you may be thinking, how can a man of God be inspired by carnality? Well, remember Luke 16: 1-12, “The Parable of the Unjust Steward”?

Luke 16 (NKJV)

He also said to His disciples: “There was a certain rich man who had a steward, and an accusation was brought to him that this man was wasting his goods. 2 So he called him and said to him, ‘What is this I hear about you? Give an account of your stewardship, for you can no longer be steward.’

3 “Then the steward said within himself, ‘What shall I do? For my master is taking the stewardship away from me. I cannot dig; I am ashamed to beg. 4 I have resolved what to do, that when I am put out of the stewardship, they may receive me into their houses.’

5 “So he called every one of his master’s debtors to him, and said to the first, ‘How much do you owe my master?’ 6 And he said, ‘A hundred measures of oil.’ So he said to him, ‘Take your bill, and sit down quickly and write fifty.’ 7 Then he said to another, ‘And how much do you owe?’ So he said, ‘A hundred measures of wheat.’ And he said to him, ‘Take your bill, and write eighty.’ 8 So the master commended the unjust steward because he had dealt shrewdly. For the sons of this world are more shrewd in their generation than the sons of light.

9 “And I say to you, make friends for yourselves by unrighteous mammon, that when you fail, they may receive you into an everlasting home. 10 He who is faithful in what is least is faithful also in much; and he who is unjust in what is least is unjust also in much. 11 Therefore if you have not been faithful in the unrighteous mammon, who will commit to your trust the true riches? 12 And if you have not been faithful in what is another man’s, who will give you what is your own?

Notice that the rich man (representing God in this parable) commended the unjust steward or manager. The steward acted very shrewdly in regard to the rich man’s money. Jesus proclaimed that “the children of this world are more shrewd (wiser in some translations) in THEIR GENERATION than the sons of light”. In other words, Jesus was saying that there are some lessons that Christians can learn from ‘the world’…that’s another post that’s coming soon.

When I look at the life of Prince and the way he pursued and released what was inside of him…the way he made the most of his talents and gifts… I’m inspired in my pursuit of ministry and releasing what God has placed inside of me.

Prince’s Gifts and Talents

Prince was one of the most gifted individuals of our time, THAT WE KNOW OF. I say “that we know of” because there are probably scores of other gifted individuals out there that will let their talents and abilities die with them. Gifts and talents are no good if we allow them to remain dormant…or keep them to ourselves. God gives us gifts and talents so we can use them to reveal His glory to the world, and as tools to build His Kingdom. Prince didn’t allow his gifts to remain dormant or to himself. He didn’t come from ‘money’. He wasn’t born with a silver spoon in his mouth. He didn’t allow circumstances or excuses to negate his gifts. He FOUND WAYS to make it happen…

That inspires me to do the same for God.

Prince’s Vision

God drives home the importance of vision in Habakkuk 2:1-3…

 Then the Lord answered me and said:

“Write the vision, And make it plain on tablets,
That he may run who reads it.

For the vision is yet for an appointed time;
But at the end it will speak, and it will not lie.
Though it tarries, wait for it;
Because it will surely come,
It will not tarry.

Prince had vision of where he wanted to go. He had a clear picture of where, what and who he wanted to be. Vision is a snapshot of how you see yourself in the future, and it is what drives you to reach the smaller goals along the way to get to your destination. No one can move with the trajectory and momentum of Prince, even through setbacks, without vision…

That also inspires me in ministry.

Princes Dedication to Perfection

In the bible, perfection in regard to man, isn’t flawless, but mature (Teleios, Strong’s Concordance). It means being ‘perfect’ for each level as you progress, as a 4th grader who is ready to be promoted to 5th grade…not yet ready for high school, but perfect for the current level. Prince honed his talents and the talents of those around him. He consistently got better, and he made those around him better. As an instrumentalist, song writer, producer, performer, entertainer, he was never satisfied. He always strove for perfection. This is what we should do as Christians. We should always be growing, maturing and perfecting the gifts and talents that God gives us…

This inspires me as a minister, songwriter, writer, husband, father, man of God.

Prince’s Boldness

It was clear that Prince had the boldness to do what he felt he needed to do to be seen and promote who and how he wanted to be perceived. Of course coming on stage almost naked, and using profanity was not good or Godly. In an interview with Tavis Smiley, Prince stated that he did a lot of things early in his career to be as “flashy” and as”noisey” as he could be to deal with and compensate for getting teased in school. He focused on getting better at what he did to deal with the pain of his past. His boldness to write what he felt, perform as he felt, dress as he felt is what gave him his platform. After signing with Warner Brothers, after being offered one of the hottest producers in the industry at the time, Maurice White, he insisted on producing himself….now that’s bold for a teenager…

This inspires me as a minister to be bold for Christ.

Prince’s Influence

Prince will always be remembered as one of the greatest influences on music, culture, fashion, expression, etc., of our time, and possibly all time. Not only did he set the standard, but he raised the bar. You can hear Prince’s influence in various genres of music. His audience is one of the most diverse of any artist. His influence extends beyond race, gender, culture and ethnicity. He has inspired artistry, professionalism, excellence and greatness in countless others that will continue to shape our world…

This inspires me as a minister, writer and man of God.

Again, this post is not to judge any aspect of his life.

Am I a fan of Prince…Yes.

Do I agree with everything that he did or the way he did it…No.

However,  we have to learn to make the most of the good and bad in all of our lives…and Prince Rogers Nelson is and will remain to be the one of the greatest influences in the life of Minister Aldtric Johnson and my ministry.

Is there someone or something that inspires you in your walk with Christ, that may make others say….”REALLY? Tell me how!” If so, please leave a reply, and tell me how. It may inspire others too.

BE BLESSTIFIED!

BE CAREFUL WHAT YOU SAY BEHIND YOUR, “I AM…”

wp-1488989422838.jpg

Exodus 3:14 (NKJV)

14 And God said to Moses, “I AM WHO I AM.” And He said, “Thus you shall say to the children of Israel, ‘I AM has sent me to you.’”

When God tells Moses who to say sent him when he goes into Egypt, He says tell them, “I AM”.

I AM is less about his name and what He’s called and more about His nature. Every time God says I AM, He let’s us know more about who He is…what He is…what He does.

Look what God says behind, “I am”…

“I am your shield…”

“I am the Lord…”

“I am God…”

“I am the Lord your God…”

“I am the Lord who sanctifies you…”

“I am giving…”

“I am holy…”

“I am with you…”

“I am He who blots out…”

“I am the First and the Last…”

“I am He who comforts you…”

“I am merciful…”

“I am Holy…”

“I am the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob…”

“I am the Christ…”

“I am able…”

“I am the Son of God…”

“I am One…

“I am from above…

“I am the bread of life…”

“I am the living bread…”

“I am from Him , and He sent Me…”

“I am the Light of the World…”

“Before Abraham Was, I AM…”

“I am the door…”

“I am the good shepherd…”

“I am the resurrection and he life…”

“I am the way, the truth and the life…”

“I am in My Father and the Father in Me…”

“I am the vine…”

“I am not of this world…”

“I am the King…”

“I am the Alpha and he Omega, the First and the Last…”

“I am He who lives…”

“I am alive forevermore…”

“I am He who searches the hearts and minds…

“I am coming quickly!”


BEHIND every  “I AM” from the Lord…there is meaning, purpose…action!

BEHIND every “I AM”…He defines himself.

AND SO DO WE…


Remember what Jesus said…

Luke 6:45(NKJV)

45 A good man out of the good treasure of his heart brings forth good; and an evil man out of the evil treasure of his heart brings forth evil. FOR OUT OF THE ABUNDANCE OF THE HEART HIS MOUTH SPEAKS.

SO, Be careful how you define yourself!

Be very careful what you say behind your “I am!”

I am defeated!

I am depressed!

I am weak!

I am ugly!

I am helpless!

I am hopeless!

I am lost!

I am cursed!

I am victorious!

I am joyous!

I am strong!

I am saved!

I am empowered

I am beautiful!

I am hopeful!

I am blessed!

I am a child of the King!

I am BLESSTIFIED!

 

 

 

 

WHEN GOD USES THE ‘N-WORD’ (from my archives)…

wp-1491849985989.

God has said it to me many times.


The ‘N-WORD’


And I must admit that it’s very rare that I like it.

It’s very hard for me to hear.

Sometimes, I think it’s not fair.

I will think to myself, “You didn’t say the ‘N-WORD’ to him…or to her!”

I know that God is sovereign, and He can say whatever He wants to say.

I know He loves me…knows what’s best for me…and everything He does is always working for my good.

I know He knows me better than I know myself.

Yes, I trust Him, and I submit to His perfect will for my life.

But, that doesn’t make it hurt any less when God decides to respond to me with…


The ‘N-WORD’


Sometimes I reason within myself, He really didn’t mean that.

Sometimes I will keep pushing, trying to force a different response…

But, still His answer remains to be…


The ‘N-WORD’


As much as He loves me and gives me all of what I need and some of what I want…

Sometimes God has to say…


The ‘N-WORD’ to me


As much as I don’t like it, I still love Him and trust Him.

I take peace in the fact that His grace is always sufficient for me.

How do you react…

When God tells you “NO”?

2 Corinthians 12: 8-9 (NKJV)

 Concerning this thing I pleaded with the Lord three times that it might depart from me. And He said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for My strength is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore, most gladly I will rather boast in my infirmities, that the power of Christ may rest upon me.

 BE BLESSTIFIED!

 

 

YOU DON’T HAVE TO DO IT ANYMORE…

wp-1484402357822.jpg
YOU CAN STOP TODAY IF YOU REALLY WANT TO…#encouragent

YOU DON’T HAVE TO…

You don’t have to gain one more pound…

You don’t have to give away your body…

You don’t have to make one more charge…

Watch one more obscene video…

Make/answer one more call from ‘them’…

Sent or open one more text from ‘him or her’

Open one more email…

Send one more pic…

Take one more drink…

Smoke one more cigarette…

Curse one more time…

Waste any more energy…

Waste any more time…

Cheat one more time…

Spread one more rumor…

Start one more fight…

Make one more frivolous purchase…

Insult, backstab  or undermine one more person…

Quit one more job…

Be in one more clique…

Hold one more grudge…

Do ‘IT’ one more time (you know what you ‘IT’ is)…

God has given you the power and responsibility to stop today if you want to.

Philippians 4:13 (NKJV)

 13 I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.

Colossians 3:8 (NKJV)

But now you yourselves are to put off all these: anger, wrath, malice, blasphemy, filthy language out of your mouth.

Ephesians 4:31

 31 Let all bitterness, wrath, anger, clamor, and evil speaking be put away from you, with all malice.

He has given you the tools to do it…

Matthew 17:20-21

 20 So Jesus said to them, “Because of your unbelief;[d] for assuredly, I say to you, if you have faith as a mustard seed, you will say to this mountain, ‘Move from here to there,’ and it will move; and nothing will be impossible for you. 21 However, this kind does not go out except by prayer and fasting.”

You STOP today if you REALLY want to!

Sometimes, the right thing to DO…is DON’T.

BE BLESSTIFIED!!!

 

EVEN THE MOST EFFECTIVE LEADERS DON’T ‘HAVE IT ALL TOGETHER’…

wp-1494361653849.

Leaders, especially spiritual leaders , are very highly scrutinized and often criticized if they ‘don’t have it all together’. We can find ourselves expecting them to be near perfect. But, when we read our bibles, we find that many of God’s most anointed…those whom He gave great responsibility were lacking in many areas.

Moses and the Apostle Paul weren’t the greatest speakers.

Exodus 4:10 (NKJV)

10 Then Moses said to the Lord, “O my Lord, I am not eloquent, neither before nor since You have spoken to Your servant; but I am slow of speech and slow of tongue.”

2 Corinthians 11:6 (NKJV)

Even though I am untrained in speech, yet I am not in knowledge. But we have been thoroughly manifested among you in all things.

Eli the anointed High Priest and Judge had corrupt, disobedient sons (1 Samuel 3).

1 Samuel 3:13  (NKJV)

13 For I have told him that I will judge his house forever for the iniquity which he knows, because his sons made themselves vile, and he did not restrain them.

Peter was quick to speak before he thought, and was even rebuked by Paul for being a hypocrite to the point that it influenced other leaders.

Galatians 2:11-13(NKJV)

11 Now when Peter had come to Antioch, I withstood him to his face, because he was to be blamed; 12 for before certain men came from James, he would eat with the Gentiles; but when they came, he withdrew and separated himself, fearing those who were of the circumcision. 13 And the rest of the Jews also played the hypocrite with him, so that even Barnabas was carried away with their hypocrisy.

Just because one is anointed by God doesn’t mean that he or she doesn’t need any help. Every great leader needs a strong support system. They need to be surrounded by gifted, anointed people they can trust to delegate responsibility and help with their weaknesses. I think that’s God’s system of checks and balances.

We sometimes see charismatic, polished and sometimes affluent leaders and assume they have ‘it all together’ and that we could never qualify for leadership in God’s Kingdom because of our personal issues and weaknesses.

But, let me assure you that all leaders…

ARE NOT CHARISMATIC

It’s easy to confuse charisma for anointing or confidence. Many great leaders are soft-spoken and reserved. There are many of charismatic leaders who can motivate a crowd but have absolutely no vision. There are others who have the WRONG vision and can motivate millions to do the wrong thing. Never confuse charisma with anointing. Check out this post for more on that… 4 WAYS TO TELL THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN PREACHING & A PERFORMANCE….

ARE NOT GOOD AT MANAGING MONEY

The ability to manage money can either be a gift or an acquired discipline. For those of whom that it doesn’t come so naturally, they can struggle with the discipline, detail and organization it takes to be a great money manager. Remember how one of the devoted prophets in the Old Testament died in poverty leaving his sons to be sold into slavery…

2 Kings 4:1 (NIV)

4 The wife of a man from the company of the prophets cried out to Elisha, “Your servant my husband is dead, and you know that he revered the Lord. But now his creditor is coming to take my two boys as his slaves.

ARE NOT ORGANIZED

Here again some people are more naturally inclined to be organized. They pay great attention to detail. They are uneasy when things aren’t in place. They even organize things in their minds as they observe them, while others struggle to be organized. They make a sincere effort, but slowly find themselves slipping into their old habits. Notice how the rich nobleman in Luke 16:1-13 had a shrewd manager hired to manage his affairs.

DON’T HAVE THE BEST BEHAVED CHILDREN

Yes, I know what the bible says…

1 Timothy 3:4-5 (NKJV)

one who rules his own house well, having his children in submission with all reverence (for if a man does not know how to rule his own house, how will he take care of the church of God?)

…and this is not a contradiction. I had a friend tell me that his dad, a very sincere, devout man of God resigned as a deacon because his son, (my friends brother) was addicted to  drugs and in and out of jail. Well, the devil found out how to move a great leader out of the way. We are all God’s children and we don’t always behave as He commands us, does that mean that He’s not a good Father? Does that mean that God is not a good leader? No! God set’s the standard of behavior and doesn’t waver. He tells us, “NO!” to certain things. It’s up to us to love and respect Him enough to obey. That’s what God expects us to do…set the rules and boundaries in the home. To say, “No!” and don’t waver. As mentioned earlier, Eli, a great man of God, didn’t restrain his sons in 1 Samuel Chapters 2 and 3. But, he was still highly respected and used by God.

DON’T HAVE THE PERFECT MARRIAGE

Any stromg leader will tell you that leadership itself is a challenge to marriage. Responsibilities sometimes force the leader to choose between his or her spouse and duties. Leadership cuts into quality time, occupies the leaders mind during personal time, and even sometimes affects the desire for intimacy. It was obvious that ministry took some apostles a way from their wives, which is sure to put a strain on marriage…

1 Corinthians 9:5 (NKJV)

 Do we have no right to take along a believing wife, as do also the other apostles, the brothers of the Lord, and Cephas? 

DON’T HAVE A GREAT CREDIT SCORE

Of course God expects leaders to honor their commitments and responsibilities…

Psalm 37:21 (NKJV)

21 The wicked borrows and does not repay,
But the righteous shows mercy and gives.

But, when responsibilities aren’t met, it not always due to intentional carelessness. It’s not necessarily because of over extending, but sometimes life happens. Sometimes illness, job loss, an unwanted divorce and other things beyond the leaders control can happen damaging his or her credit.

 

ARE SOMETIMES TROUBLED BY DIFFICULT CIRCUMSTANCES

Jesus Himself was troubled in the garden the night before He went to the cross.

John 12:27 (NKJV)

27 “Now My soul is troubled, and what shall I say? ‘Father, save Me from this hour’? But for this purpose I came to this hour.

 

Sometimes we don’t expect our leaders to be visibly troubled by circumstances. But, that only shows their humanity. If Jesus Himself was troubled, the greatest leader of them all, then surely we will be too.

These are only a few of the reasons is why good leaders should be honest with themselves and aware of their natural weaknesses, so they can surround themselves with the right support to carry out their vision. They must also be confident enough in themselves to not be threatened by their support, but have the discernment to know who may actually be a threat to their leadership.

And, those whom they lead must be humble enough to follow in spite of their weaknesses, offering help towards the vision where possible. They must also realize that some weaknesses don’t disqualify the leader from leading. For example, the prophet Nathan didn’t tell David that he wasn’t qualified to be king after murder and adultery. (1 Samuel 12)

 Leaders are only human, and they will all have lapses in character, but overall they must be…

Trustworthy.

Integrity…

Calm in Crisis…

One who unites rather than divides…

One who resolves conflict…

And, most of all led by God and a student of His word.

Remember, God uses imperfect people to carry out His perfect will. All good leaders need good help.

BE BLESSTIFIED!

 

ENCOURAGE YOUR ENCOURAGER…TODAY!

wp-1479227943866.jpg

Is there someone who inspires you or encourages you unintentionally?

I’m not talking about the intentional encouragement of this post – I purposefully publish this blog to inspire, encourage, inform and help us grow together. I’m talking about someone who silently inspires you. Is there someone that you secretly notice how…

They work hard for their family.

Gracefully they endure hardship.

Unselfishly they sacrifice for others.

Courageously they fight an illness or disability.

They always have a smile when you need to see it.

They can find always find positive in the most negative situations.

Refuse to give up nor allow anyone else to give up…no matter what.

They have grown and overcome obstacles to become someone no one thought they would be.

There are innumerable ways that someone can unintentionally encourage you. Many times they do it without trying. Why? Because exhortation (encouragement) is a spiritual gift from God.

Romans 12:6-8 (NKJV)

6 Having then gifts differing according to the grace that is given to us, let us use them: if prophecy, let us prophesy in proportion to our faith; 7 or ministry, let us use it in our ministering; he who teaches, in teaching; 8 he who exhorts, in exhortation; he who gives, with liberality; he who leads, with diligence; he who shows mercy, with cheerfulness.

Encouragement can drain those who pour themselves into others. I’m sure you have noticed this as you sacrifice your energy and anointing to be a blessing to others.

Remember that those who encourage you need encouraging too.

IF THERE IS SOMEONE IN YOUR LIFE THAT UNKNOWINGLY ENCOURAGES YOU, PLEASE SHARE THIS POST WITH THEM AND LET THEM KNOW HOW THEY ENCOURAGE YOU. Give them a thumbs up and a smile:-) This encouragement from you may come on a day when they need it most. Be a BLESSING to someone who BLESSTIFIES you!

God tells us to encourage one another and comfort one another with the encouragement and comfort that keeps us going…

1 Thessalonians 5:11 (NKJV)

11 Therefore comfort each other and edify one another, just as you also are doing.
2 Corinthians 1:3-5 (NKJV)

3 Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of mercies and God of all comfort, 4 who comforts us in all our tribulation, that we may be able to comfort those who are in any trouble, with the comfort with which we ourselves are comforted by God. 5 For as the sufferings of Christ abound in us, so our consolation also abounds through Christ.

ENCOURAGE YOUR ENCOURAGER and help them to…

BE BLESSTIFIED.

 

 

 

YOUR SUBTLE BUT POWERFUL SPIRITUAL GIFT…

wp-1491739071551.

Sometimes it’s so easy to notice those high-profile, spiritual gifts that not only bring attention and glory to God, but also those who are being used by God…

Pastors, Evangelists, Teachers, Leaders etc…

Ephesians 4:11-12 (NKJV)

11 And He Himself gave some to be apostles, some prophets, some evangelists, and some pastors and teachers, 12 for the equipping of the saints for the work of ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ,

Some people are obviously much more gifted at singing, or speaking…some people naturally have more charisma and personality.

If we aren’t one of these people, if we’re not careful, we can begin to believe that we aren’t gifted.

But, some spiritual gifts are more subtle, but just as important and powerful.

Is there anyone in your life who just makes you feel better?

Even though they always seem to know the right thing to say, they often don’t even have to say a word…you just feel better when they’re around.

They have perfected the art of when to speak, and when to just shut up and listen.

They are the one’s who know how to make us laugh and smile at just the right time.

These are the people who quietly hold families, churches, organizations, and even marriages together.

These are the people who inspire and strengthen those high-profile speakers, singers, leaders etc.

One of the most powerful, overlooked and under-desired gifts in the Kingdom of God is the gift of…


EXHORTATION

Roman 15:6-8 (NKJV)

Having then gifts differing according to the grace that is given to us, let us use them: if prophecy, let us prophesy in proportion to our faith; or ministry, let us use it in our ministering; he who teaches, in teaching; he who EXHORTS, in EXHORTATION; he who gives, with liberality; he who leads, with diligence; he who shows mercy, with cheerfulness.


Some people are just natural encouragers…it is effortless to them.

In fact, they feel compelled to do so whereever they go…they can’t help it.

People gravitate to them…both saved and unsaved because everyone needs encouraging.

Is this you?

Remember this…


When you INSPIRE, ENCOURAGE or ENTERTAIN someone you will always have value to them…though they  may not always show it.


I even believe the gift of COMEDY and ENTERTAINMENT are gifts of EXHORTATION…they’re spiritual gifts that are sometimes hijacked by the enemy. What’s more encouraging than making people laugh or relax?


So, just because you may not be powerful speaker, have a beautiful singing voice or a visionary leader doesn’t mean you aren’t gifted.

If your gift is the gift of encouragement…identify it and embrace it.

Don’t despise your spiritual gift or desire someone else’s…embrace your own!

And, if there’s someone in your life that keeps you going…Encourage Your Encourager Today!

BE BLESSTIFIED!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

THE WORST POISON ISN’T WHAT YOU DRINK, BUT WHAT YOU THINK…

wp-1477405633997.jpg
For as he thinks in his heart, so is he. Proverbs 23:7a (NKJV)

What have you THOUGHT yourself out of?

What has God placed on your mind that you killed before it got started?

Whatever ministry, good works, kindness or purpose God gives to you, it begins with a simple thought that He places in your mind.

1 Corinthians 2:16b boldly informs us that “We have the mind of Christ”.

How awesome is that?

When we are led by God, and walking in His Spirit, He GIVES us HIS thoughts! How else could a preacher give a relevant word? How else can any child of God minister, unless he or she have the mind of Christ? Anytime you feel compelled to do good, to do the right thing…begins with a thought from God.

And, the enemy’s goal is to KILL those Godly thoughts.

Yes the enemy comes to kill, steal and destroy, but not necessarily kill your life…

He wants to kill your purpose…

Steal your vision and…

Destroy your witness and reputation…

Even ruin your family!


DON’T LET THE DEVIL POISON YOUR THOUGHT LIFE!


Don’t let evil thoughts turn into evil deeds. Every act of sin begins with a thought.

Remember…

 Philippians 4:8,

“8 Finally, brethren, whatever things are true, whatever things are noble, whatever things are just, whatever things are pure, whatever things are lovely, whatever things are of good report, if there is any virtue and if there is anything praiseworthy—meditate on these things.”

Don’t poison your life with toxic thoughts!

BE BLESSTIFIED!!!

FOR THOSE WHO FEEL IT’S TAKING TOO LONG FOR THINGS TO ‘TAKE OFF’ FOR THEM…

wp-1493064414270.

You finally did it. You have begun fulfilling the purpose that God has for your life.

You’ve birthed your vision. You’ve pushed it out. You’ve planted the seeds and you’re anxious to see the results, to see the fruit and yes, to even reap some of the harvest.

But, you’re discouraged because it’s taking so long. You’re disappointed because the masses aren’t seeing what you see. People aren’t buying into your vision. In fact, some are rejecting it.

It begins to make you doubt…did I hear God right? Is this my purpose? Is this what He’s called me to do? If so…wouldn’t it be easier than this?


Let me give you a quick word of encouragement.


The fact that it’s taking so long. The fact that you’re being met with so much resistance could be your CONFIRMATION that it’s from God.

Think about it…anything that is BIRTHED has to first go through it’s infancy stage. Babies don’t walk or run when they’re first born. Toddlers aren’t able to take care of themselves. They have to be fed…nurtured. Yes, they’re full of potential but they really don’t even yet resemble what they will be when they mature.

Any seed that’s planted doesn’t sprout up immediately. It has to be fertilized and watered. It has to be nourished. It then breaks through the ground and grows ONLY by the light of the SUN. Neither the seed, nor the small plant resembles what it will one day be.

Look at our Lord Jesus Christ. He used twelve men to birth His church. It started small. It met great resistance. It took years and persecution for the church to become what it is today. And, even today, God’s church isn’t totally what He would have it to be.

Seedtime and Harvest…

Genesis 8:22 (KJV)

While the earth remaineth, seedtime and harvest, and cold and heat, and summer and winter, and day and night shall not cease.

Even though many have perverted this scripture to reduce the Gospel to prosperity…there is a time and a season for everything…

Ecclesiastes 3:1 (KJV)

 To every thing there is a season, and a time to every purpose under the heaven

God didn’t even send His Son until it was time…

Galatians 4:4-7 (KJV)

 But when the fulness of the time was come, God sent forth his Son, made of a woman, made under the law, To redeem them that were under the law, that we might receive the adoption of sons.

When’s your time? Your time is now…it just hasn’t reached it’s fullness. What did Jesus tell Mary at the wedding…

John 2:4 (NKJV)

Jesus said to her, “Woman, what does your concern have to do with Me? My hour has not yet come.”

Now look at what He told His disciples…

John 7:6 (NKJV)

Then Jesus said to them, “My time has not yet come, but your time is always ready.

So, if you feel it’s taking too long for your vision to manifest…don’t give up. Keep nurturing it. Keep feeding it. Keep watering it. Even when no one else understands. Some days you will be the only one who can see it…that’s why God gave it to you.

Celebrate the small victories and confirmations that God gives you. You will need them to get through the difficult days…to keep you encouraged when confronted with doubters.

Of course as humans, there are moments when we want our doubters to see that God is the source of our vision…we want to share some of the Lord’s glory when it manifests.

So…


Be ready not to just wait ON the Lord, but wait LIKE the Lord.


Jesus went to the cross over 2,000 years ago, and some of those present that day left thinking they had won. He allowed them to go home thinking they had defeated Him.

If you think things are taking too long to take off for you, think about this…

If Jesus can wait for His glory, so can you.

BE BLESSTIFIED!

WHEN GOD USES THE ‘N-WORD’ (from my archives)…

wp-1491849985989.

God has said it to me many times.


The ‘N-WORD’


And I must admit that it’s very rare that I like it.

It’s very hard for me to hear.

Sometimes, I think it’s not fair.

I will think to myself, “You didn’t say the ‘N-WORD’ to him…or to her!”

I know that God is sovereign, and He can say whatever He wants to say.

I know He loves me…knows what’s best for me…and everything He does is always working for my good.

I know He knows me better than I know myself.

Yes, I trust Him, and I submit to His perfect will for my life.

But, that doesn’t make it hurt any less when God decides to respond to me with…


The ‘N-WORD’


Sometimes I reason within myself, He really didn’t mean that.

Sometimes I will keep pushing, trying to force a different response…

But, still His answer remains to be…


The ‘N-WORD’


As much as He loves me and gives me all of what I need and some of what I want…

Sometimes God has to say…


The ‘N-WORD’ to me


As much as I don’t like it, I still love Him and trust Him.

I take peace in the fact that His grace is always sufficient for me.

How do you react…

When God tells you “NO”?

2 Corinthians 12: 8-9 (NKJV)

 Concerning this thing I pleaded with the Lord three times that it might depart from me. And He said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for My strength is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore, most gladly I will rather boast in my infirmities, that the power of Christ may rest upon me.

 BE BLESSTIFIED!

 

 

ARE YOUR RESPONSIBLE WITH YOUR AUDIENCE?

wp-1479740619961.jpg

There are many celebrities, politicians, athletes and ministers who have huge audiences. They have great NAME RECOGNITION, people know them nearly everywhere they go, listen to what they have to say and even imitate their behavior. They have huge influence with their fans or followers. It’s disappointing to see what some people do with their voice and influence. Some are blessed with a social stage or public platform only to squander their voice and influence on foolishness or themselves.

We may not all be celebrities, but God has given all of us an audience and a voice. In your home, job, school, church, the park, the shopping center, in traffic, the restaurant people are watching you and listening to you. What are you doing with your audience? Many times we claim we want God to ‘enlarge our territory’ just as Jabez prayed in 1 Chronicles 4:10. We ask Him to give us more resources and influence, but are we being responsible with that we already have? Are we being responsible with those in our circle of influence, no matter how small?

How do you handle disappointment on the job?…in front of your children? 

How do you act when you get bad service in the restaurant?…or in a store?

How do you behave when frustrated in traffic?…(That one hit me!)

Do you speak up for the right things when it’s not popular to do so or remain silent? 

How do you represent yourself on social media? 

How do you dress? 

God tells us in 1 Peter 2:12 …

“Having your conduct honorable among the Gentiles, that when they speak against you as evildoers, they may, by your good works which they observe, glorify God in the day of visitation.” 

Colossians 4:5 says… “Walk in wisdom toward those who are outside, redeeming the time.” 

And of course In Matthew Jesus says…

Matthew 5:14-16… “You are the light of the world. A city that is set on a hill cannot be hidden. 15 Nor do they 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, that they may see your good works and glorify your Father in heaven. God expects us to be His Light in the world. 

Too many people want God to move them to bigger and better when they aren’t even thriving where they’re planted. 

Are you thriving where you’re planted? 

What are you doing with your voice and influence? 

How are you perceived in your circles? 

Whether you have an audience of  one or one million, God expects you to honor Him and be light. Men, Women and Children of God…let’s be responsible with our audience.

BE BLESSTIFIED!

WHAT DID YOU CALL ME??!!

wp-1480446274126.jpg
‘Colorful Language Ain’t Cool”

Years ago, I remember hearing, and reading Richard Pryor say after a trip to Africa, “ I ain’t never gonna call another Black man ni**a”. Now I’m in no way bringing this up to disparage Richard Pryor, but to make a point. He passionately made this statement and changed his behavior. He stopped using the N-WORD, which offends many people, but continued to use profane and vulgar words such as G-D, that offend God.

Colossians 3:8 (NKJV)

But now you yourselves are to put off all these: anger, wrath, malice, blasphemy, filthy language out of your mouth.

 Ephesians 4:29 (NKJV)

29 Let no corrupt word proceed out of your mouth, but what is good for necessary edification, that it may impart grace to the hearers

 Ephesians 5: 3-4 (NKJV)

But fornication and all uncleanness or covetousness, let it not even be named among you, as is fitting for saints; neither filthiness, nor foolish talking, nor coarse jesting, which are not fitting, but rather giving of thanks

There are many words that offend us. Some more than others. Which words offend you, in many cases has much to do with who you are.  People CHOOSE to use the words for various reasons.

It’s interesting to me how many Christians are MORE offended by…

  • The N-Word
  • The Fa-Word
  • The Hon-Word
  • The Ho-Word
  • The B-Word
  • The K-Word
  • The Sp-Word
  • The Ch-Word

…than they are offended by other profane, offensive, vulgar or even blasphemous words that offend God. Some even seem completely comfortable using the GD-WORD.

Jesus made it very clear in Matthew 12..

Matthew 12:36 (NKJV)

36 But I say to you that for every idle word men may speak, they will give account of it in the day of judgment.

The words that we use and that offend us give great insight into what is in our hearts. Yes, some words are offensive racially, but God expects us to put Him even above our race.

 Galatians 3:28 (NKJV)

28 There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither slave nor free, there is neither male nor female; for you are all one in Christ Jesus.

What’s more important to you? What offends you? Or what offends God?

Let us be careful not to put what offends us above what offends God.

BE BLESSTIFIED!!!

LEARNING TO LIVE & WORK WITH PEOPLE YOU DON’T TRUST…

wp-1488048352149.jpg

Your success, effectiveness and peace is not only determined by how well you relate with people you DO TRUST…but how well you are at relating with people that you DON’T TRUST.

Our ultimate trust is in God, but He didn’t put us on this earth alone.

God has also ordained it that there is little that we can accomplish alone.

Even God Himself uses His angels to relate to us…

Hebrews 11:14 (NKJV)

 Are they not all ministering spirits sent forth to minister for those who will inherit salvation?

God let the captives in Babylon know that though they trusted Him, they were to pray for the peace of the city in which they lived because their peace was dependent on the city’s peace…

Jeremiah 29:7(NKJV)

And seek the peace of the city where I have caused you to be carried away captive, and pray to the Lord for it; for in its peace you will have peace.

Jesus sent the first disciples out in pairs (Mark 6:7, Luke 10:1)

The apostles worked in pairs, teams and even depended heavily on the early church for help.

As much as we are interdependent on another in this life, God also warned us about putting our trust in people rather than Him…

Psalm 118:8 (NKJV)

It is better to trust in the Lord. Than to put confidence in man.

Of course we all want to be in relationships and situations with people we trust, but that’s not always possible…Sometimes we can’t even trust our own selves.

It seems it’s getting harder and harder to trust people these days.

We have families, jobs, churches, communities, organizations that we are all a part of in which to live, but the fact is that you KNOW you can’t trust everyone…

In your family…

On your job…

In your church…

In your community…

In our government…

Sometimes we go through seasons and situations when we can’t trust our spouse, children, parents or even friends…because we are human beings being human.

Do we abandon these relationships and resources because of the lack of trust or total trust?

Of course not!


Your ability to be successful, effective and have peace in your life is just as dependent upon your ability to work and relate with people you DON’T trust as well as those you DO trust.


How do you do it?

First of all trust God first. If He has you in a situation, or you have allowed yourself into a situation where trust is limited…you still have to lean on His word, truth, character and TRUST HIM.

Second pray for wisdom and discernment so you can know WHO to trust and WHO NOT to trust.

Third pray for those whom you don’t trust that they submit themselves to God through our Lord and Savior Yeshua, Jesus Christ. It’s bigger than just you or me…Ultimately it’s more about their relationship with God than ours with them.

Fourth, remain in God’s character so that you can set a standard and example of behavior and plant good seeds for God’s Kingdom. You do this by walking in the Spirit as defined in Galatians 5:22, 23.

Fifth, always make are always faithful and trustworthy in all your relationships.

And finally, remember that God had equipped you with everything you need for this LIFE and GODLINESS in this life, through His divine nature that is now inside you…

2 PETER 1:2-8 (NKJV)

Grace and peace be multiplied to you in the knowledge of God and of Jesus our Lord, as His divine power has given to us all things that pertain to life and godliness, through the knowledge of Him who called us by glory and virtue, by which have been given to us exceedingly great and precious promises, that through these you may be partakers of the divine nature, having escaped the corruption that is in the world through lust. But also for this very reason, giving all diligence, add to your faith virtue, to virtue knowledge, to knowledge self-control, to self-control perseverance, to perseverance godliness, to godliness brotherly kindness, and to brotherly kindness love. For if these things are yours and abound, you will be neither barren nor unfruitful in the knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ.

No you can’t trust everyone…

The fact that we aren’t always faithful means that God can’t always trust us. But, we can always trust Him.

So,

Trust God…

Trust Yourself…

Be Trustworthy…

And remember, GOD IS GREATER THAN THOSE WHOM YOU DON’T TRUST.

Add this to your prayer life…”Lord give me the ability to relate with those I don’t trust.”

BE BLESSTIFIED!

 

 

 

GIVE PEOPLE TIME TO CHANGE…

wp-1489062140325.jpg

Sometimes we can get frustrated when we share God’s truth or fresh revelation and people don’t respond the way we had hoped.

They may respond negatively…

They may even tell you that they don’t want to hear it…

They may tell you that you’re confused…

They may tell you that they just aren’t ready to change…

Once you plant a seed, you can’t force it to grow…We plant and water, but God gives the increase.

1 Corinthians 3:6-8 (NKJV)

I planted, Apollos watered, but God gave the increase. So then neither he who plants is anything, nor he who waters, but God who gives the increase.

We must remember…we didn’t always immediate agree with everything we heard concerning God the first time.

We didn’t immediately take heed to every bit of good, sound spiritual advice we received.

We didn’t immediately stop sinful practices when someone warned us.

There were seeds planted in all of us that took some time to grow.

There were habits, behaviors and attitudes that we had to work through.

There were difficult truths that we weren’t immediately willing to accept…

In fact, there are still some spiritual truths that we have not yet accepted. Just because we haven’t accepted it yet doesn’t prevent it from being God’s truth.

Pray for an ear, heart, mind and attitude that you can be good soil for the good seed that’s planted in you as in the Parable of the Sower

Matthew 13:18-23 (NKJV)

 18 “Therefore hear the parable of the sower: 19 When anyone hears the word of the kingdom, and does not understand it, then the wicked one comes and snatches away what was sown in his heart. This is he who received seed by the wayside. 20 But he who received the seed on stony places, this is he who hears the word and immediately receives it with joy; 21 yet he has no root in himself, but endures only for a while. For when tribulation or persecution arises because of the word, immediately he stumbles. 22 Now he who received seed among the thorns is he who hears the word, and the cares of this world and the deceitfulness of riches choke the word, and he becomes unfruitful. 23 But he who received seed on the good ground is he who hears the word and understands it, who indeed bears fruit and produces: some a hundredfold, some sixty, some thirty.”

Be patient when you share the word of God, or give spiritual advice to others…

Think about the fact that when Jesus was in His human form, his biological brothers (Mary’s other sons) did not believe in Him…

John 7:18 (NKJV)

 His brothers therefore said to Him, “Depart from here and go into Judea, that Your disciples also may see the works that You are doing. For no one does anything in secret while he himself seeks to be known openly. If You do these things, show Yourself to the world.” For even His brothers did not believe in Him.

BUT,

Eventually they did believe. In fact, the letters of Jude and James are now part of the New Testament.

Give people time to change.

BE BLESSTIFIED!

 

 

HOW PRINCE INSPIRES ME AS A CHRISTIAN (In case you missed it)…

wp-1481159868248.jpg

Prince’s music is definitely a huge part of the soundtrack of my life, especially my younger days. I enjoy the genius of his artistry..He wasn’t just a singer, but a singer/performer/entertainer/entrepreneur/activist/philanthropist. His influence on music, fashion and culture is undeniable.

It’s also very evident that Prince, as we all do, had a strong spiritual side and a strong carnal side. He wrote songs that were sexually explicit as well as songs that were beautiful and spiritual, such as “God”, which was the B-Side to “Purple Rain” (for younger readers who may not know, a B-Side was another song on the opposite side of the single of a vinyl record). In fact, sometimes Prince was a spiritual paradox…again, as we all have been.

The purpose of this post isn’t to judge Prince’s spirituality or his carnality, but how both inspire me.

Many of you may be thinking, how can a man of God be inspired by carnality? Well, remember Luke 16: 1-12, “The Parable of the Unjust Steward”?

Luke 16 (NKJV)

He also said to His disciples: “There was a certain rich man who had a steward, and an accusation was brought to him that this man was wasting his goods. 2 So he called him and said to him, ‘What is this I hear about you? Give an account of your stewardship, for you can no longer be steward.’

3 “Then the steward said within himself, ‘What shall I do? For my master is taking the stewardship away from me. I cannot dig; I am ashamed to beg. 4 I have resolved what to do, that when I am put out of the stewardship, they may receive me into their houses.’

5 “So he called every one of his master’s debtors to him, and said to the first, ‘How much do you owe my master?’ 6 And he said, ‘A hundred measures of oil.’ So he said to him, ‘Take your bill, and sit down quickly and write fifty.’ 7 Then he said to another, ‘And how much do you owe?’ So he said, ‘A hundred measures of wheat.’ And he said to him, ‘Take your bill, and write eighty.’ 8 So the master commended the unjust steward because he had dealt shrewdly. For the sons of this world are more shrewd in their generation than the sons of light.

9 “And I say to you, make friends for yourselves by unrighteous mammon, that when you fail, they may receive you into an everlasting home. 10 He who is faithful in what is least is faithful also in much; and he who is unjust in what is least is unjust also in much. 11 Therefore if you have not been faithful in the unrighteous mammon, who will commit to your trust the true riches? 12 And if you have not been faithful in what is another man’s, who will give you what is your own?

Notice that the rich man (representing God in this parable) commended the unjust steward or manager. The steward acted very shrewdly in regard to the rich man’s money. Jesus proclaimed that “the children of this world are more shrewd (wiser in some translations) in THEIR GENERATION than the sons of light”. In other words, Jesus was saying that there are some lessons that Christians can learn from ‘the world’…that’s another post that’s coming soon.

When I look at the life of Prince and the way he pursued and released what was inside of him…the way he made the most of his talents and gifts… I’m inspired in my pursuit of ministry and releasing what God has placed inside of me.

Prince’s Gifts and Talents

Many people are talented, but few are ‘special’. Prince’s talents definitely took him from beyond talented to special. Prince was one of the most gifted individuals of our time, THAT WE KNOW OF. I say “that we know of” because there are probably scores of other gifted individuals out there that will let their talents and abilities die with them. Gifts and talents are no good if we allow them to remain dormant…or keep them to ourselves. God gives us gifts and talents so we can use them to reveal His glory to the world, and as tools to build His Kingdom. Prince didn’t allow his gifts to remain dormant or to himself. He didn’t come from ‘money’. He wasn’t born with a silver spoon in his mouth. He didn’t allow circumstances or excuses to negate his gifts. He FOUND WAYS to make it happen…


That inspires me to do the same for God.


Prince’s Vision

God drives home the importance of vision in Habakkuk 2:1-3…

 Then the Lord answered me and said:

“Write the vision, And make it plain on tablets,
That he may run who reads it.

For the vision is yet for an appointed time;
But at the end it will speak, and it will not lie.
Though it tarries, wait for it;
Because it will surely come,
It will not tarry.

Prince had vision of where he wanted to go. He had a clear picture of where, what and who he wanted to be. Vision is a snapshot of how you see yourself in the future, and it is what drives you to reach the smaller goals along the way to get to your destination. No one can move with the trajectory and momentum of Prince, even through setbacks, without vision…


That also inspires me in ministry.


Princes Dedication to Perfection

In the bible, perfection in regard to man, isn’t flawless, but mature (Teleios, Strong’s Concordance). It means being ‘perfect’ for each level as you progress, as a 4th grader who is ready to be promoted to 5th grade…not yet ready for high school, but perfect for the current level. Prince honed his talents and the talents of those around him. He consistently got better, and he made those around him better. As an instrumentalist, song writer, producer, performer, entertainer, he was never satisfied. He always strove for perfection. This is what we should do as Christians. We should always be growing, maturing and perfecting the gifts and talents that God gives us…


This inspires me as a minister, songwriter, writer, husband, father, man of God.


Prince’s Boldness

It was clear that Prince had the boldness to do what he felt he needed to do to be seen and promote who and how he wanted to be perceived. Of course coming on stage almost naked, and using profanity was not good or Godly. In an interview with Tavis Smiley, Prince stated that he did a lot of things early in his career to be as “flashy” and as”noisey” as he could be to deal with and compensate for getting teased in school. He focused on getting better at what he did to deal with the pain of his past. His boldness to write what he felt, perform as he felt, dress as he felt is what gave him his platform. After signing with Warner Brothers, after being offered one of the hottest producers in the industry at the time, Maurice White, he insisted on producing himself….now that’s bold for a teenager…


This inspires me as a minister to be bold for Christ.


Prince’s Influence

Prince will always be remembered as one of the greatest influences on music, culture, fashion, expression, etc., of our time, and possibly all time. Not only did he set the standard, but he raised the bar. You can hear Prince’s influence in various genres of music. His audience is one of the most diverse of any artist. His influence extends beyond race, gender, culture and ethnicity. He has inspired artistry, professionalism, excellence and greatness in countless others that will continue to shape our world…

This inspires me as a minister, writer and man of God.

Again, this post is not to judge any aspect of his life.

Am I a fan of Prince…Yes.

Do I agree with everything that he did or the way he did it…No.

However,  we have to learn to make the most of the good and bad in all of our lives…and Prince Rogers Nelson is and will remain to be the one of the greatest influences in the life of Minister Aldtric Johnson and my ministry.

Is there someone or something that inspires you in your walk with Christ, that may make others say….”REALLY? Tell me how!” If so, please leave a reply, and tell me how. It may inspire others too.

BE BLESSTIFIED!

YOU DON’T HAVE TO DO IT ANYMORE (In case you missed it)…

wp-1484402357822.jpg
YOU CAN STOP TODAY IF YOU REALLY WANT TO…#encouragent

YOU DON’T HAVE TO…

You don’t have to gain one more pound…

You don’t have to give away your body…

You don’t have to make one more charge…

Watch one more obscene video…

Make/answer one more call from ‘them’…

Send or open one more text from ‘him or her’

Open one more email…

Send one more pic…

Take one more drink…

Smoke one more cigarette…

Curse one more time…

Waste any more energy…

Waste any more time…

Cheat one more time…

Spread one more rumor…

Start one more fight…

Make one more frivolous purchase…

Insult, backstab  or undermine one more person…

Quit one more job…

Be in one more clique…

Hold one more grudge…

Do ‘IT’ one more time (you know what you ‘IT’ is)…

God has given you the power and responsibility to stop today if you want to.

Philippians 4:13 (NKJV)

 13 I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.

Colossians 3:8 (NKJV)

But now you yourselves are to put off all these: anger, wrath, malice, blasphemy, filthy language out of your mouth.

Ephesians 4:31

 31 Let all bitterness, wrath, anger, clamor, and evil speaking be put away from you, with all malice.

He has given you the tools to do it…

Matthew 17:20-21

 20 So Jesus said to them, “Because of your unbelief;[d] for assuredly, I say to you, if you have faith as a mustard seed, you will say to this mountain, ‘Move from here to there,’ and it will move; and nothing will be impossible for you. 21 However, this kind does not go out except by prayer and fasting.”

You STOP today if you REALLY want to!

Sometimes, the right thing to DO…is DON’T.

BE BLESSTIFIED!!!

 

GIVE PEOPLE TIME TO CHANGE (In Case You Missed It)…

wp-1489062140325.jpg

Sometimes we can get frustrated when we share God’s truth or fresh revelation and people don’t respond the way we had hoped.

They may respond negatively…

They may even tell you that they don’t want to hear it…

They may tell you that you’re confused…

They may tell you that they just aren’t ready to change…

Once you plant a seed, you can’t force it to grow…We plant and water, but God gives the increase.

1 Corinthians 3:6-8 (NKJV)

I planted, Apollos watered, but God gave the increase. So then neither he who plants is anything, nor he who waters, but God who gives the increase.

We must remember…we didn’t always immediate agree with everything we heard concerning God the first time.

We didn’t immediately take heed to every bit of good, sound spiritual advice we received.

We didn’t immediately stop sinful practices when someone warned us.

There were seeds planted in all of us that took some time to grow.

There were habits, behaviors and attitudes that we had to work through.

There were difficult truths that we weren’t immediately willing to accept…

In fact, there are still some spiritual truths that we have not yet accepted. Just because we haven’t accepted it yet doesn’t prevent it from being God’s truth.

Pray for an ear, heart, mind and attitude that you can be good soil for the good seed that’s planted in you as in the Parable of the Sower

Matthew 13:18-23 (NKJV)

 18 “Therefore hear the parable of the sower: 19 When anyone hears the word of the kingdom, and does not understand it, then the wicked one comes and snatches away what was sown in his heart. This is he who received seed by the wayside. 20 But he who received the seed on stony places, this is he who hears the word and immediately receives it with joy; 21 yet he has no root in himself, but endures only for a while. For when tribulation or persecution arises because of the word, immediately he stumbles. 22 Now he who received seed among the thorns is he who hears the word, and the cares of this world and the deceitfulness of riches choke the word, and he becomes unfruitful. 23 But he who received seed on the good ground is he who hears the word and understands it, who indeed bears fruit and produces: some a hundredfold, some sixty, some thirty.”

Be patient when you share the word of God, or give spiritual advice to others…


Think about the fact that when Jesus was in His human form, his biological brothers (Mary’s other sons) did not believe in Him…


John 7:18 (NKJV)

 His brothers therefore said to Him, “Depart from here and go into Judea, that Your disciples also may see the works that You are doing. For no one does anything in secret while he himself seeks to be known openly. If You do these things, show Yourself to the world.” For even His brothers did not believe in Him.

BUT,

Eventually they did believe. In fact, the letters of Jude and James are now part of the New Testament.

Give people time to change.

BE BLESSTIFIED!

 

 

HOW TO MAKE THE MOST OF YOUR REGRETS (in case you missed it)…

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!

 

 

 

 

WHEN GOD USES THE ‘N-WORD'(In case you missed it)…

wp-1491849985989.

God has said it to me many times.


The ‘N-WORD’


And I must admit that it’s very rare that I like it.

It’s very hard for me to hear.

Sometimes, I think it’s not fair.

I will think to myself, “You didn’t say the ‘N-WORD’ to him…or to her!”

I know that God is sovereign, and He can say whatever He wants to say.

I know He loves me…knows what’s best for me…and everything He does is always working for my good.

I know He knows me better than I know myself.

Yes, I trust Him, and I submit to His perfect will for my life.

But, that doesn’t make it hurt any less when God decides to respond to me with…


The ‘N-WORD’


Sometimes I reason within myself, He really didn’t mean that.

Sometimes I will keep pushing, trying to force a different response…

But, still His answer remains to be…


The ‘N-WORD’


As much as He loves me and gives me all of what I need and some of what I want…

Sometimes God has to say…


The ‘N-WORD’ to me


As much as I don’t like it, I still love Him and trust Him.

I take peace in the fact that His grace is always sufficient for me.

How do you react…

When God tells you “NO”?

2 Corinthians 12: 8-9 (NKJV)

 Concerning this thing I pleaded with the Lord three times that it might depart from me. And He said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for My strength is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore, most gladly I will rather boast in my infirmities, that the power of Christ may rest upon me.

 BE BLESSTIFIED!

 

 

YOU DON’T HAVE TO DO IT ANYMORE (from my archives)…

wp-1484402357822.jpg

YOU DON’T HAVE TO…

You don’t have to gain one more pound…

You don’t have to give away your body…

You don’t have to make one more charge…

Watch one more obscene video…

Make/answer one more call from ‘them’…

Sent or open one more text from ‘him or her’

Open one more email…

Send one more pic…

Take one more drink…

Smoke one more cigarette…

Curse one more time…

Waste any more energy…

Waste any more time…

Cheat one more time…

Spread one more rumor…

Start one more fight…

Make one more frivolous purchase…

Insult, backstab  or undermine one more person…

Quit one more job…

Be in one more clique…

Hold one more grudge…

Do ‘IT’ one more time (you know what you ‘IT’ is)…

God has given you the power and responsibility to stop today if you want to.

Philippians 4:13 (NKJV)

 13 I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.

Colossians 3:8 (NKJV)

But now you yourselves are to put off all these: anger, wrath, malice, blasphemy, filthy language out of your mouth.

Ephesians 4:31

 31 Let all bitterness, wrath, anger, clamor, and evil speaking be put away from you, with all malice.

He has given you the tools to do it…

Matthew 17:20-21

 20 So Jesus said to them, “Because of your unbelief;[d] for assuredly, I say to you, if you have faith as a mustard seed, you will say to this mountain, ‘Move from here to there,’ and it will move; and nothing will be impossible for you. 21 However, this kind does not go out except by prayer and fasting.”

You STOP today if you REALLY want to!

Sometimes, the right thing to DO…is DON’T.

BE BLESSTIFIED!!!

 

BE CAREFUL WHAT YOU SAY BEHIND YOUR, “I AM…”(From My Archives)

wp-1488989422838.jpg

Exodus 3:14 (NKJV)

14 And God said to Moses, “I AM WHO I AM.” And He said, “Thus you shall say to the children of Israel, ‘I AM has sent me to you.’”

When God tells Moses who to say sent him when he goes into Egypt, He says tell them, “I AM”.

I AM is less about his name and what He’s called and more about His nature. Every time God says I AM, He let’s us know more about who He is…what He is…what He does.

Look what God says behind, “I am”…

“I am your shield…”

“I am the Lord…”

“I am God…”

“I am the Lord your God…”

“I am the Lord who sanctifies you…”

“I am giving…”

“I am holy…”

“I am with you…”

“I am He who blots out…”

“I am the First and the Last…”

“I am He who comforts you…”

“I am merciful…”

“I am Holy…”

“I am the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob…”

“I am the Christ…”

“I am able…”

“I am the Son of God…”

“I am One…

“I am from above…

“I am the bread of life…”

“I am the living bread…”

“I am from Him , and He sent Me…”

“I am the Light of the World…”

“Before Abraham Was, I AM…”

“I am the door…”

“I am the good shepherd…”

“I am the resurrection and he life…”

“I am the way, the truth and the life…”

“I am in My Father and the Father in Me…”

“I am the vine…”

“I am not of this world…”

“I am the King…”

“I am the Alpha and he Omega, the First and the Last…”

“I am He who lives…”

“I am alive forevermore…”

“I am He who searches the hearts and minds…

“I am coming quickly!”


BEHIND every  “I AM” from the Lord…there is meaning, purpose…action!

BEHIND every “I AM”…He defines himself.

AND SO DO WE…


Remember what Jesus said…

Luke 6:45(NKJV)

45 A good man out of the good treasure of his heart brings forth good; and an evil man out of the evil treasure of his heart brings forth evil. FOR OUT OF THE ABUNDANCE OF THE HEART HIS MOUTH SPEAKS.

SO, Be careful how you define yourself!

Be very careful what you say behind your “I am!”

I am defeated!

I am depressed!

I am weak!

I am ugly!

I am helpless!

I am hopeless!

I am lost!

I am cursed!

I am victorious!

I am joyous!

I am strong!

I am saved!

I am empowered

I am beautiful!

I am hopeful!

I am blessed!

I am a child of the King!

I am BLESSTIFIED!

 

 

 

 

IF BILL MAHER’S USE OF THE N-WORD OFFENED YOU, THINK ABOUT THIS…

wp-1480446274126.jpg

If you don’t already know, Bill Maher on a recent episode of his talk show, Real Time with Bill Maher, he used the N-Word referring to himself in a joke. This of course was offensive and inexcusable and Mr. Maher quickly apologized.

The purpose of this post isn’t to discuss his mistake, but to quickly examine how we as Christians prioritize what words offend us.

Years ago, I remember hearing, and reading Richard Pryor say after a trip to Africa, “ I ain’t never gonna call another Black man ni**a”. Now I’m in no way bringing this up to disparage Richard Pryor, but to make a point. He passionately made this statement and changed his behavior.


He stopped using the N-WORD, which offends many people, but continued to use profane and vulgar words that offend God.


Colossians 3:8 (NKJV)

But now you yourselves are to put off all these: anger, wrath, malice, blasphemy, filthy language out of your mouth.

 Ephesians 4:29 (NKJV)

29 Let no corrupt word proceed out of your mouth, but what is good for necessary edification, that it may impart grace to the hearers

 Ephesians 5: 3-4 (NKJV)

But fornication and all uncleanness or covetousness, let it not even be named among you, as is fitting for saints; neither filthiness, nor foolish talking, nor coarse jesting, which are not fitting, but rather giving of thanks

There are many words that offend us. Some more than others. Which words offend you, in many cases has much to do with who you are.  People CHOOSE to use the words for various reasons.

It’s interesting to me how many Christians are MORE offended by…

  • The N-Word
  • The Fa-Word
  • The Hon-Word
  • The Ho-Word
  • The B-Word
  • The K-Word
  • The Sp-Word
  • The Ch-Word

…than they are offended by other profane, offensive, vulgar or even blasphemous words that offend God. Some even seem completely comfortable using the GD-WORD.

Jesus made it very clear in Matthew 12..

Matthew 12:36 (NKJV)

36 But I say to you that for every idle word men may speak, they will give account of it in the day of judgment.

The words that we use and that offend us give great insight into what is in our hearts. Yes, some words are offensive racially, but God expects us to put Him even above our race.

 Galatians 3:28 (NKJV)

28 There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither slave nor free, there is neither male nor female; for you are all one in Christ Jesus.

Are some words offensive and inexcusable? If course, but think about this…

What’s more important to you? Words that offend you? Or words that offend God?

Let us be careful not to put what offends us above what offends God.

BE BLESSTIFIED!!!

EVEN THE MOST EFFECTIVE LEADERS DON’T ‘HAVE IT ALL TOGETHER’…

wp-1494361653849.

Leaders, especially spiritual leaders , are very highly scrutinized and often criticized if they ‘don’t have it all together’. We can find ourselves expecting them to be near perfect. But, when we read our bibles, we find that many of God’s most anointed…those whom He gave great responsibility were lacking in many areas.

Moses and the Apostle Paul weren’t the greatest speakers.

Exodus 4:10 (NKJV)

10 Then Moses said to the Lord, “O my Lord, I am not eloquent, neither before nor since You have spoken to Your servant; but I am slow of speech and slow of tongue.”

2 Corinthians 11:6 (NKJV)

Even though I am untrained in speech, yet I am not in knowledge. But we have been thoroughly manifested among you in all things.

Eli the anointed High Priest and Judge had corrupt, disobedient sons (1 Samuel 3).

1 Samuel 3:13  (NKJV)

13 For I have told him that I will judge his house forever for the iniquity which he knows, because his sons made themselves vile, and he did not restrain them.

Peter was quick to speak before he thought, and was even rebuked by Paul for being a hypocrite to the point that it influenced other leaders.

Galatians 2:11-13(NKJV)

11 Now when Peter had come to Antioch, I withstood him to his face, because he was to be blamed; 12 for before certain men came from James, he would eat with the Gentiles; but when they came, he withdrew and separated himself, fearing those who were of the circumcision. 13 And the rest of the Jews also played the hypocrite with him, so that even Barnabas was carried away with their hypocrisy.

Just because one is anointed by God doesn’t mean that he or she doesn’t need any help. Every great leader needs a strong support system. They need to be surrounded by gifted, anointed people they can trust to delegate responsibility and help with their weaknesses. I think that’s God’s system of checks and balances.

We sometimes see charismatic, polished and sometimes affluent leaders and assume they have ‘it all together’ and that we could never qualify for leadership in God’s Kingdom because of our personal issues and weaknesses.

But, let me assure you that all leaders…

ARE NOT CHARISMATIC

It’s easy to confuse charisma for anointing or confidence. Many great leaders are soft-spoken and reserved. There are many of charismatic leaders who can motivate a crowd but have absolutely no vision. There are others who have the WRONG vision and can motivate millions to do the wrong thing. Never confuse charisma with anointing. Check out this post for more on that… 4 WAYS TO TELL THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN PREACHING & A PERFORMANCE….

ARE NOT GOOD AT MANAGING MONEY

The ability to manage money can either be a gift or an acquired discipline. For those of whom that it doesn’t come so naturally, they can struggle with the discipline, detail and organization it takes to be a great money manager. Remember how one of the devoted prophets in the Old Testament died in poverty leaving his sons to be sold into slavery…

2 Kings 4:1 (NIV)

4 The wife of a man from the company of the prophets cried out to Elisha, “Your servant my husband is dead, and you know that he revered the Lord. But now his creditor is coming to take my two boys as his slaves.

ARE NOT ORGANIZED

Here again some people are more naturally inclined to be organized. They pay great attention to detail. They are uneasy when things aren’t in place. They even organize things in their minds as they observe them, while others struggle to be organized. They make a sincere effort, but slowly find themselves slipping into their old habits. Notice how the rich nobleman in Luke 16:1-13 had a shrewd manager hired to manage his affairs.

DON’T HAVE THE BEST BEHAVED CHILDREN

Yes, I know what the bible says…

1 Timothy 3:4-5 (NKJV)

one who rules his own house well, having his children in submission with all reverence (for if a man does not know how to rule his own house, how will he take care of the church of God?)

…and this is not a contradiction. I had a friend tell me that his dad, a very sincere, devout man of God resigned as a deacon because his son, (my friends brother) was addicted to  drugs and in and out of jail. Well, the devil found out how to move a great leader out of the way. We are all God’s children and we don’t always behave as He commands us, does that mean that He’s not a good Father? Does that mean that God is not a good leader? No! God set’s the standard of behavior and doesn’t waver. He tells us, “NO!” to certain things. It’s up to us to love and respect Him enough to obey. That’s what God expects us to do…set the rules and boundaries in the home. To say, “No!” and don’t waver. As mentioned earlier, Eli, a great man of God, didn’t restrain his sons in 1 Samuel Chapters 2 and 3. But, he was still highly respected and used by God.

DON’T HAVE THE PERFECT MARRIAGE

Any stromg leader will tell you that leadership itself is a challenge to marriage. Responsibilities sometimes force the leader to choose between his or her spouse and duties. Leadership cuts into quality time, occupies the leaders mind during personal time, and even sometimes affects the desire for intimacy. It was obvious that ministry took some apostles a way from their wives, which is sure to put a strain on marriage…

1 Corinthians 9:5 (NKJV)

 Do we have no right to take along a believing wife, as do also the other apostles, the brothers of the Lord, and Cephas? 

DON’T HAVE A GREAT CREDIT SCORE

Of course God expects leaders to honor their commitments and responsibilities…

Psalm 37:21 (NKJV)

21 The wicked borrows and does not repay,
But the righteous shows mercy and gives.

But, when responsibilities aren’t met, it not always due to intentional carelessness. It’s not necessarily because of over extending, but sometimes life happens. Sometimes illness, job loss, an unwanted divorce and other things beyond the leaders control can happen damaging his or her credit.

 

ARE SOMETIMES TROUBLED BY DIFFICULT CIRCUMSTANCES

Jesus Himself was troubled in the garden the night before He went to the cross.

John 12:27 (NKJV)

27 “Now My soul is troubled, and what shall I say? ‘Father, save Me from this hour’? But for this purpose I came to this hour.

 

Sometimes we don’t expect our leaders to be visibly troubled by circumstances. But, that only shows their humanity. If Jesus Himself was troubled, the greatest leader of them all, then surely we will be too.

These are only a few of the reasons is why good leaders should be honest with themselves and aware of their natural weaknesses, so they can surround themselves with the right support to carry out their vision. They must also be confident enough in themselves to not be threatened by their support, but have the discernment to know who may actually be a threat to their leadership.

And, those whom they lead must be humble enough to follow in spite of their weaknesses, offering help towards the vision where possible. They must also realize that some weaknesses don’t disqualify the leader from leading. For example, the prophet Nathan didn’t tell David that he wasn’t qualified to be king after murder and adultery. (1 Samuel 12)

 Leaders are only human, and they will all have lapses in character, but overall they must be…

Trustworthy.

Integrity…

Calm in Crisis…

One who unites rather than divides…

One who resolves conflict…

And, most of all led by God and a student of His word.

Remember, God uses imperfect people to carry out His perfect will. All good leaders need good help.

BE BLESSTIFIED!

 

STOP TRYING TO WORRY…

wp-1494251173664.

Have you ever had something unfortunate happen, gotten ‘bad’ news or lost something of value, and it didn’t bother you?

You felt you should be anxious or upset, but you just weren’t?

You tried to get upset, but you didn’t?

Maybe even tried to cry, but couldn’t.

Do you know why? It’s because you’ve been praying for peace, or someone has been praying for you.


Peace is one of God’s greatest promises…


Philippians 4:6-7 (NKJV)

 Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication, with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to God; and the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, WILL GUARD your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus.

God’s peace will literally guard and protect your heart and mind.

When God’s peace guards your heart and mind…worry, doubt, fear, anxiety and stress can’t get in, sometimes even if you try to force it in.

In spite of what’s going on in your life you have a sense of calmness and ease because you trust God. You may not see a solution or resolution, but you have peace that no one can even understand…not even you.

But, isn’t that what God promised in Philippians 4:7?

Stop TRYING to worry and enjoy your peace.

 

BE BLESSTIFIED!

IT’S TIME TO STOP MOPING AND MOVE ON…

wp-1493731844506.

Yes, they hurt you.

Yes, they did you wrong.

Yes, they slowed you down.


But, your moping has stopped you.


They’ve moved on…so now it’s time for you to do the same. God won’t even allow people to feel sorry for you anymore because it makes you mope even more.

Stop waiting for an apology…move on.

Stop complaining to others…move on.

Stop thinking about it…move on.

God can’t use you if your moping.

Your PITY party is making you PITIFUL!

Turn your PITY PARTY into a PRAISE PARTY!

Philippians 3:13-14 (NKJV)

13 Brethren, I do not count myself to have apprehended; but one thing I do, forgetting those things which are behind and reaching forward to those things which are ahead, 14 I press toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus.

Stop moping and move on!

BE BLESSTIFIED!

 

FOR THOSE WHO FEEL IT’S TAKING TOO LONG FOR THINGS TO ‘TAKE OFF’ FOR THEM…

wp-1493064414270.

You finally did it. You have begun fulfilling the purpose that God has for your life.

You’ve birthed your vision. You’ve pushed it out. You’ve planted the seeds and you’re anxious to see the results, to see the fruit and yes, to even reap some of the harvest.

But, you’re discouraged because it’s taking so long. You’re disappointed because the masses aren’t seeing what you see. People aren’t buying into your vision. In fact, some are rejecting it.

It begins to make you doubt…did I hear God right? Is this my purpose? Is this what He’s called me to do? If so…wouldn’t it be easier than this?


Let me give you a quick word of encouragement.


The fact that it’s taking so long. The fact that you’re being met with so much resistance could be your CONFIRMATION that it’s from God.

Think about it…anything that is BIRTHED has to first go through it’s infancy stage. Babies don’t walk or run when they’re first born. Toddlers aren’t able to take care of themselves. They have to be fed…nurtured. Yes, they’re full of potential but they really don’t even yet resemble what they will be when they mature.

Any seed that’s planted doesn’t sprout up immediately. It has to be fertilized and watered. It has to be nourished. It then breaks through the ground and grows ONLY by the light of the SUN. Neither the seed, nor the small plant resembles what it will one day be.

Look at our Lord Jesus Christ. He used twelve men to birth His church. It started small. It met great resistance. It took years and persecution for the church to become what it is today. And, even today, God’s church isn’t totally what He would have it to be.

Seedtime and Harvest…

Genesis 8:22 (KJV)

While the earth remaineth, seedtime and harvest, and cold and heat, and summer and winter, and day and night shall not cease.

Even though many have perverted this scripture to reduce the Gospel to prosperity…there is a time and a season for everything…

Ecclesiastes 3:1 (KJV)

 To every thing there is a season, and a time to every purpose under the heaven

God didn’t even send His Son until it was time…

Galatians 4:4-7 (KJV)

 But when the fulness of the time was come, God sent forth his Son, made of a woman, made under the law, To redeem them that were under the law, that we might receive the adoption of sons.

When’s your time? Your time is now…it just hasn’t reached it’s fullness. What did Jesus tell Mary at the wedding…

John 2:4 (NKJV)

Jesus said to her, “Woman, what does your concern have to do with Me? My hour has not yet come.”

Now look at what He told His disciples…

John 7:6 (NKJV)

Then Jesus said to them, “My time has not yet come, but your time is always ready.

So, if you feel it’s taking too long for your vision to manifest…don’t give up. Keep nurturing it. Keep feeding it. Keep watering it. Even when no one else understands. Some days you will be the only one who can see it…that’s why God gave it to you.

Celebrate the small victories and confirmations that God gives you. You will need them to get through the difficult days…to keep you encouraged when confronted with doubters.

Of course as humans, there are moments when we want our doubters to see that God is the source of our vision…we want to share some of the Lord’s glory when it manifests.

So…


Be ready not to just wait ON the Lord, but wait LIKE the Lord.


Jesus went to the cross over 2,000 years ago, and some of those present that day left thinking they had won. He allowed them to go home thinking they had defeated Him.

If you think things are taking too long to take off for you, think about this…

If Jesus can wait for His glory, so can you.

BE BLESSTIFIED!

HOW PRINCE INSPIRES ME AS A CHRISTIAN…

wp-1481159868248.jpg

Prince’s music is definitely a huge part of the soundtrack of my life, especially my younger days. I enjoy the genius of his artistry..He wasn’t just a singer, but a singer/performer/entertainer/entrepreneur/activist/philanthropist. His influence on music, fashion and culture is undeniable.

It’s also very evident that Prince, as we all do, had a strong spiritual side and a strong carnal side. He wrote songs that were sexually explicit as well as songs that were beautiful and spiritual, such as “God”, which was the B-Side to “Purple Rain” (for younger readers who may not know, a B-Side was another song on the opposite side of the single of a vinyl record). In fact, sometimes Prince was a spiritual paradox…again, as we all have been.

The purpose of this post isn’t to judge Prince’s spirituality or his carnality, but how both inspire me.

Many of you may be thinking, how can a man of God be inspired by carnality? Well, remember Luke 16: 1-12, “The Parable of the Unjust Steward”?

Luke 16 (NKJV)

He also said to His disciples: “There was a certain rich man who had a steward, and an accusation was brought to him that this man was wasting his goods. 2 So he called him and said to him, ‘What is this I hear about you? Give an account of your stewardship, for you can no longer be steward.’

3 “Then the steward said within himself, ‘What shall I do? For my master is taking the stewardship away from me. I cannot dig; I am ashamed to beg. 4 I have resolved what to do, that when I am put out of the stewardship, they may receive me into their houses.’

5 “So he called every one of his master’s debtors to him, and said to the first, ‘How much do you owe my master?’ 6 And he said, ‘A hundred measures of oil.’ So he said to him, ‘Take your bill, and sit down quickly and write fifty.’ 7 Then he said to another, ‘And how much do you owe?’ So he said, ‘A hundred measures of wheat.’ And he said to him, ‘Take your bill, and write eighty.’ 8 So the master commended the unjust steward because he had dealt shrewdly. For the sons of this world are more shrewd in their generation than the sons of light.

9 “And I say to you, make friends for yourselves by unrighteous mammon, that when you fail, they may receive you into an everlasting home. 10 He who is faithful in what is least is faithful also in much; and he who is unjust in what is least is unjust also in much. 11 Therefore if you have not been faithful in the unrighteous mammon, who will commit to your trust the true riches? 12 And if you have not been faithful in what is another man’s, who will give you what is your own?

Notice that the rich man (representing God in this parable) commended the unjust steward or manager. The steward acted very shrewdly in regard to the rich man’s money. Jesus proclaimed that “the children of this world are more shrewd (wiser in some translations) in THEIR GENERATION than the sons of light”. In other words, Jesus was saying that there are some lessons that Christians can learn from ‘the world’…that’s another post that’s coming soon.

When I look at the life of Prince and the way he pursued and released what was inside of him…the way he made the most of his talents and gifts… I’m inspired in my pursuit of ministry and releasing what God has placed inside of me.

Prince’s Gifts and Talents

Prince was one of the most gifted individuals of our time, THAT WE KNOW OF. I say “that we know of” because there are probably scores of other gifted individuals out there that will let their talents and abilities die with them. Gifts and talents are no good if we allow them to remain dormant…or keep them to ourselves. God gives us gifts and talents so we can use them to reveal His glory to the world, and as tools to build His Kingdom. Prince didn’t allow his gifts to remain dormant or to himself. He didn’t come from ‘money’. He wasn’t born with a silver spoon in his mouth. He didn’t allow circumstances or excuses to negate his gifts. He FOUND WAYS to make it happen…

That inspires me to do the same for God.

Prince’s Vision

God drives home the importance of vision in Habakkuk 2:1-3…

 Then the Lord answered me and said:

“Write the vision, And make it plain on tablets,
That he may run who reads it.

For the vision is yet for an appointed time;
But at the end it will speak, and it will not lie.
Though it tarries, wait for it;
Because it will surely come,
It will not tarry.

Prince had vision of where he wanted to go. He had a clear picture of where, what and who he wanted to be. Vision is a snapshot of how you see yourself in the future, and it is what drives you to reach the smaller goals along the way to get to your destination. No one can move with the trajectory and momentum of Prince, even through setbacks, without vision…

That also inspires me in ministry.

Princes Dedication to Perfection

In the bible, perfection in regard to man, isn’t flawless, but mature (Teleios, Strong’s Concordance). It means being ‘perfect’ for each level as you progress, as a 4th grader who is ready to be promoted to 5th grade…not yet ready for high school, but perfect for the current level. Prince honed his talents and the talents of those around him. He consistently got better, and he made those around him better. As an instrumentalist, song writer, producer, performer, entertainer, he was never satisfied. He always strove for perfection. This is what we should do as Christians. We should always be growing, maturing and perfecting the gifts and talents that God gives us…

This inspires me as a minister, songwriter, writer, husband, father, man of God.

Prince’s Boldness

It was clear that Prince had the boldness to do what he felt he needed to do to be seen and promote who and how he wanted to be perceived. Of course coming on stage almost naked, and using profanity was not good or Godly. In an interview with Tavis Smiley, Prince stated that he did a lot of things early in his career to be as “flashy” and as”noisey” as he could be to deal with and compensate for getting teased in school. He focused on getting better at what he did to deal with the pain of his past. His boldness to write what he felt, perform as he felt, dress as he felt is what gave him his platform. After signing with Warner Brothers, after being offered one of the hottest producers in the industry at the time, Maurice White, he insisted on producing himself….now that’s bold for a teenager…

This inspires me as a minister to be bold for Christ.

Prince’s Influence

Prince will always be remembered as one of the greatest influences on music, culture, fashion, expression, etc., of our time, and possibly all time. Not only did he set the standard, but he raised the bar. You can hear Prince’s influence in various genres of music. His audience is one of the most diverse of any artist. His influence extends beyond race, gender, culture and ethnicity. He has inspired artistry, professionalism, excellence and greatness in countless others that will continue to shape our world…

This inspires me as a minister, writer and man of God.

Again, this post is not to judge any aspect of his life.

Am I a fan of Prince…Yes.

Do I agree with everything that he did or the way he did it…No.

However,  we have to learn to make the most of the good and bad in all of our lives…and Prince Rogers Nelson is and will remain to be the one of the greatest influences in the life of Minister Aldtric Johnson and my ministry.

Is there someone or something that inspires you in your walk with Christ, that may make others say….”REALLY? Tell me how!” If so, please leave a reply, and tell me how. It may inspire others too.

BE BLESSTIFIED!

Website Built with WordPress.com.

Up ↑

%d bloggers like this: