MID YEAR PROGRESS REPORT
This is a good time of year to look at how the year has gone so far and to plan for the rest of the year or even start planning for next year. During this time of year, even before I learned that reflecting on the first half of the year is a pattern to follow according to the Hebraic Calendar, I always found myself especially reflective during this time of year. What do you think about when you hear the words “Progress Report”? What type of feelings and memories come to mind when you think about receiving a progress report? For some feelings of anticipation and excitement might over take them, but for the rest of the population feelings on anxiety, worry, and dread may kick in. Some people might start to get all analytical and start to process everything that they did during the time frame that the progress report is for. They think that if they can remember everything that they did that they can then predict or approximate what their score Continue reading “Mid-Year PROGRESS REPORT”
What do you do when there is something you need and it seems impossible to get it? What do you do when you need to get somewhere and there is something obstructing your path making it unrealistic that you would ever get there? What do you do when there seems like nothing else can be done? Many non-believers and believers alike give up. They accept that they will not get what they need or never get to where they want to go in life. Some people fall into depression, other people look or someone to blame, and unfortunately most people move on in their lives as best they can assuming that it was not God’s will for them to receive what they needed or go to the place that they were drawn to. Please don’t stop reading here, because many of you might think that you know where this message is going. You may think that I am going to throw at you some motivational message about never giving up (basically telling you that if you don’t get what you want or need that it is your fault for giving up). Or you might think that I am going to try to get you to adjust your aspirations to be more attainable (basically letting you know that you need to stop hoping that you will ever get, do, or become anything greater than what you already are so you should be happy with that). No, to the contrary what I want to share with you is knowledge of the One who can obtain for you what you cannot get for yourself, Someone who can help you get to where you Continue reading “Get to Know The Way Maker”
Boast Up! -I Will Make My Boast In the Lord!
A few weeks ago I overheard a group of my male coworkers talking, no – debating over whose team/player was the best and why. This wasn’t a calm, casual, chattering of indifference. On the contrary, this conversation overflowed with passion, conviction, and faith. They were throwing up stats, mapping out strategic plays, and investigating the odds of their players winning under various conditions. Much thought and consideration was expressed, with the occasional disagreeing outburst from a participant. They talked about these teams and players like they had invested their life’s savings in them, like there was no possibility of them losing. These guys debating over sports were borderline emotional over whose team was better. I don’t think that it was an accident or coincidence that I witnessed this conversation. I actually was trying my best to Continue reading “Boast Up! – I Will Make My Boast in the Lord!”
Summer Breeze Series #1
Develop a Sweet Tooth!
103 How sweet are thy words unto my taste! yea, sweeter than honey to my mouth! 104 Through thy precepts I get understanding: therefore I hate every false way. 105 Thy word is a lamp unto my feet, and a light unto my path. –Psalm 119:103-105
A sweet tooth is a condition a person has when they find sweet treats irresistible. This urge to eat sweet desserts and other tantalizing creations in some social circles is seen as gluttonous and irresponsible. In other cultures indulging in sweet treats is recommended even encouraged, when shared among guests or for special occasions. Well the good news is that we can indulge our sweet tooth without the guilt and added pounds when we take on the attitude towards God’s word as described Continue reading “Summer Breeze Series #1 – Develop a Sweet Tooth!”
Breaking Routine- Spirit Led Life
I truly believe that God is a God of order, however in His sovereignty He can express that order anyway He wishes. Since God made us in His image many of us enjoy atmospheres of order, structure, and routine. We create structure and routine in our lives by the plans and choices we make. Sometimes the safety and comfort of following a routine, especially in our spiritual life, can unfortunately lead us to stagnation and loss of interest. While routine is great for administration of duties and management of time it can give a false sense of security or dull our senses to anything, including God, which may fall outside of our scheduled activities. One of the keys to remaining sensitive to the Holy Spirit is not only listening to, and communing via prayer with Him, but it is to obey the guiding of His voice. If we are too attached to following our routine, we might miss Continue reading “Breaking Routine – The Spirit Led Life”
When Jesus Breaks the Rules
So many of our teens around the world are labeled as “Hard-headed” “Rebellious” and “Good-For-Nothing” by their parents, teacher, and even their peers at a young age. When problems arise that cause them to face disciplinary action in the school system and even the judicial system, those have invested in the lives of these young people are left devastated, disappointed, and disillusioned, losing hope that any positive change will come for that child. When a teen becomes a parent, gets involved with drugs/alcohol, commits a crime, or drops out of school, blaming the parents, economic level, or outside influences are considered. The symptoms and irritants are identified but the root cause of the problem is never addressed. Even if a young person is doing well by family and community standards, the danger of that Continue reading “When Jesus Breaks the Rules”
As an adult, a believer in Christ, and a child of God my faith is consistently tested. It seems like there is no area of life the enemy will not attempt to ruin, especially when we have dedicated our lives to the Lord. I used to think that trials and hardships were only allowed by God to enter our lives so that we could learn to submit and obey Him. But there is a place where you have submitted everything: life, time, energy, finances, relationships, hopes, dreams, and intentions – and there is still great opposition from the enemy. By now you begin to ask yourself and God: “What and I doing wrong?” “When is this going to work out?” or “What is causing this?” So in your quest to understand and Continue reading “Childlike Faith”
After the Gleaning: What are You Carrying?
I love the book of Ruth, it was one of the books in the Bible that I read in its entirety when I accepted Christ as a young adult. I love the story of love, devotion, covenant, and restoration that the book of Ruth delivers. This story inspires hope of reclaiming joy, happiness, peace, and total life prosperity after enduring loss, hardship, and uncertainty of the future. As I have studied this book over the years I have seen myself through the perspective of both Ruth and Naomi – being devoted to serve and accompany people in my life on a journey to recover all, and as a woman who has lost much and became bitter from the unfulfilled promises in life. I don’t want to paint this story in the book of Ruth as a “happy go lucky” “happily ever after” type of fairy tale, and yet I also do not want to focus on all of the pain and hardship that they endured before the breakthrough and blessing came, as if that is a qualifier to receive Continue reading “After the Gleaning: What are You Carrying?”
The Mountain Side
Regardless of where you are in life right now it will take endurance, perseverance, and determination and the help of God to get you to your next place of victory. There is this song by Tauren Wells called Hills and Valleys https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=p4rRCjrAyCs that talks about how God is with us on the mountain top (triumph) or in the valley (defeat/distress). I really like how this song emphasizes that God is always with us, that He won’t abandon us in the valley of hard times, and that He is the One who put us on the mountain top through His love and grace. What I saw as I listened to this song was a person running on this road, like they were running a race. Then as they were running another person ran up from the side to join them, as if to encourage them to keep going. I used to love watching shows like Biggest Loser or Extreme Makeover Continue reading “The Mountain Side”
Between Two Perspectives
There are two distinct ways of perceiving life while going through a test or trial. When the going gets tough it can seem like the enemy is always around trying to harm, destroy, oppress, or frustrate you. It seem like not matter how hard you try to stay positive and look on the bright side being grateful from moment to moment, that that is the precise moment that the enemy wants to rear his ugly head. It is very easy to view life through this lens of victimization – the righteous servant vs. the mean ole devil. Thank God that, that is not the only perspective that is available. This other perspective sees how God is always at work on our behalf regardless of what the enemy does, regardless of how hard things get, and no matter what obstacles rise up. While this perspective does take some imagination (at times) and lots of Continue reading “Between Two Perspectives”