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Showing posts from April, 2016

Gifts

What do we do when we have gifts for people?

We give them away, right?

We don't hold on to them for ourselves, right?
We bless people, right?
Nope, wrong. Well kind of, because not all of us does that. 
Some of us don't do what we're supposed to do with our gifts. Some of us don't use them. Some of us don't use them to help get people in a better place than they were before. 
I was one of those people. I wasn't doing what I was supposed to be doing with my gifts. 
And I'm the first one with my hand raised high in the air to say I accept full responsibility that I had some gifts and didn't give them to anybody. I kept them hidden. I was too scared to give them away, because I was selfish. Wow, that's the first time I've ever used that word to describe myself. I never thought of myself as selfish. Yet it's true and I'm just now realizing how absolutely selfish I was. You see, in my fear of what others would think about my gifts, I didn&#…

Just Picture It

So I'm driving by a new development and I see a building being erected somewhere at the halfway point.

It was really nice.

I thought, how amazing it was that the building looked as if it were there the entire time. I tried to picture what the space looked like before someone got a vision in their minds for a piece of sculpture to fit there. I wonder how long that person had the vision in their thoughts. Did he dream about it? Or how was the concept formed in her mind? How much did she think about it?

They pictured it long before it appeared.

The birth of an idea, a vision, a picture.

They're formed way before anyone sees the evidence. That's how great things are created.
It usually starts as a small thought that finishes in astonishment -- the human mind that could fathom such complex innovation. None of it comes from osmosis or appears out of thin air. I believe such intelligence comes from God. He equips us with everything we do. He's the one who gives us the brain…

Associations

You've probably heard it before,

'Show me your top 3-5 friends and I'll show you your future.'
It's some truth to that, wouldn't you say?
Birds of a feather...you know the rest. 
We have to be careful who we let in our circles. If the person doesn't have the same value system, then there's going to be conflict. Conflict is defined as "tocomeintocollisionordisagreement;becontradictory,atvariance,orinopposition;clash."1 
A question we should ask ourselves is who's leading who? If our friends differ so much from us that we find ourselves thinking twice, then that should be a huge red flag. If we're leading and they're not where we're located, are we leading them to positive things? Are we leading them to God? Do we sometimes suggest they go to Christ to get help with their issues? If so, then hang with them for awhile and look for some positive changes. But after some time if they're not interested in changing then it's ti…

Be Still

Did you know you can be still and be moving at the same time?

Yep, being still means you're spending time alone (not lonely) to hear from God. You're meditating on His word as you wait to hear your next move. You're opening yourself up to hear (and recognize) His still small voice, perhaps His whispers, to tell you what direction you are to go in. 
Yet while all this is happening, you are moving. Yes, you're moving in the spirit. You are growing by leaps and bounds. And when God is done for that moment, you are renewed. You've got your marching orders for that time until you need to be still again. It's a process that never ends for us. 
That's another thing that makes God so awesome, right?
He's our Commander in Chief, who tells us what to do in battle and then we win. 
For His glory. 
He says in Psalms 46:10, "be still and know that I am God." That means we have to stop, slow down and be quiet. Otherwise we can miss what's He's tell…

You Will Make It

I believe you will finish.

I believe you will get the rewards.

I believe you will make it.

Especially if you come to blogs or devotions like this everyday. Especially if you read God's word everyday (it doesn't have to be much, even 1 word of the bible is powerful and life changing). Especially if you go to the places God puts before you. Especially if you listen to the people He puts in your life to help you. Especially if you continue the race, no matter how discouraging it sometimes gets. If we do all of the above, we will make it. You know why? Because we are trying to get better. We want to use every resource to tap into what the Lord has for us. We will read whatever we can, go wherever we can go, and listen to whomever we can listen to. 
All, to get to the next level.
God has given us great resources to help us. We have to use them though.

Staring at that treadmill everyday won't get us in shape. We have to use it and keep using it.

When we stay with it, then grea…

No Throwing the Towel

That dreaded towel.
Drenched with blood, sweat, and tears. 
Long ago it was thrown in the boxing ring after a fighter was badly beaten and felt he couldn't go on any longer. To him there was just no way he could win, so he threw that dirty symbol of defeat in.

He was done. 
At least that's what he convinced himself.
I think many of us know what it's like to feel the way a boxer does after he or she has been pummeled, punched, and in some cases, kicked every which a way. It's hard to weather all of that pain. Yet the real fighters do and I'm not even sure giving up ever comes in the neighborhood of their vocabulary. That's why they're the champs. The ones who push through and fight throughout that long bloody war.

People with such will power really do exist. 
Their the ones who end up standing. They may have the torn, ripped, cut, stinking, bloody, sweaty arms raised in the air, but they're standing as the winners. They may look a mess, but they know it…

More

How are you living?

I asked the question, because the answer indicates fulfillment.

If we're not living the way we want to be living, there is much more for us. But...

...it's going to cost us something.

If we want to be blessed, we have to be willing to be a blessing. Why would God give more to a selfish person? That would make God selfish. We know that's impossible. God is the God of abundance and that's how He operates. If He gives us abundance, He expects us to spread that abundance in helping others -- with their natural walk and with their spiritual walk. Then when they get on their feet, they in turn do the same thing.

Helping hands, helping hands.

So how are we living?
If we want to live large, we have to do more. We weren't born to simply exist without making an impact. Nobody was born to just walk the earth and not add anything. That's why God has us pour into what society calls bums or outcasts. That's right, we may be the ones called to help th…

Positive Self-talk Class

I will begin teaching a class titled, Positive Self-talk, which coincides with my journal book, Positive Self-talk, a little journal book with BIG talk.My journal book is an easy-breezy read, it's very thin, only about 50 pages with large font, and has lots of space to write. It's a journal book of self reflection and goal-setting, which will lead to more positive thinking and help people make better choices.
My target population are high school and college-aged students, but is not limited to them. I will go into high schools, college campuses, churches, etc, to teach the curriculum. Positive Self-talk will get people to start thinking about the things God wants them to do (their purpose in life).

Since becoming a public school teacher years ago, I know there are too many students who do not know what they want to do. As a result they sometimes sabotage themselves based on negative information they've been told by some of the people around them. I want them to know it do…

Busting Faith

I feel like busting loose. 

That's my faith talking.

Real faith.

Mustard seed faith.

This is what I mean: What if you blew up a balloon with tiny little breaths (because that's all you may have had in you at the time) and before you knew it, that balloon blew up so much you couldn't believe your eyes? You looked in wonder at what was happening right before you. That balloon became something big. It got huge simply because you made a move. You did something. Then progress happened. You weren't dreaming. Things were changing.
It was really happening. Finally.

Did you know those small breaths were your breaths of power? They may have been all you had to give, yet you gave them. You blew. You didn't just stand idle. You acted.That's how mustard seed faith works. When you simply trust God with your whole being (even if you think you're starting small), when you raise your hands towards Him, when you lift your voice for Him, when you sing His praises, He will ensu…

The Lioness

One of my favorite animals to watch on those animal shows, is the lioness. 
She's sleek, smart, and will do what it takes to feed her young. 
Yes, she's mainly the hunter. Not the lion. His role is important, but different. The lioness is the one who goes after the prey. She's the queen.

She goes after the enemy in a calculating way. She studies them and waits for the perfect opportunity to pounce.

Game over.

Of course I like that about her, because she fights for survival and although her meal may not come easy, she doesn't abort the mission. She has abnormal persistence to go after what she wants and what she feels she has a right to. One can't help but respect her prowess in the wild. It's something to watch. Mesmerizing. I can watch her forever, because her fortitude is formidable. Her determination, admirable.

I can't help but think God raised us the same way. To have that purposeful way we should go about getting what's ours. Getting what He prom…

Stuck

Yesterday I wrote an article on goals. In that article I said we need to stay focused by writing down our goals and how God would honor them.

But...we have to do the work.

Nothing valuable comes free.

The scripture I referenced was Habukkuk 2.2. I love that verse, because it reminds me, once again, that God will orchestrate and direct our paths. He will do that when we seek Him. He gives us free will to make our own decisions.

Be smarter than I was when I sat around and waited for manna to fall from the sky. I got nothing waiting for God to work on my behalf when I wasn't willing to get off my duff and start something. I was stuck.

Stuck in the rut of nothingness. Stuck in the mundane of life. That's not a good place. It's a lonely, sad place. I don't recommend it, because it's a place where we don't ask for help from people who are willing to help us. It's a place of depression even if we're going to work every day, taking care of our family, doing wel…

Goals

Has anyone ever told you there's power in the "pen?"

Yep, there is proof that if a person writes down what they want to achieve, more than likely they will achieve it. In other words, if you can vision yourself doing it, you will probably do it. And if you write it down your chances go up dramatically.

Write the vision.

And after you write it visualize yourself doing it over and over again.

Today I asked a question to a group of students. The question was, 'raise your hand if you visualize yourself successful.' Less than a quarter of the hands went up. That surprised me, because I thought at least half of them would have held their hands up high. I thought many of them would have dreamt big dreams.

I was wrong.

Some people just don't think big enough. And I'm not just talking about young people. There are so many of us not living our dreams, because we have given up. Achieving what God wants for us takes too much work, sacrifice, and giving up sleep, TV…

Keep Going

No matter how hard things get, we must continue to strive for the things God has for us.

I know the grind gets discouraging, because sometimes we work so hard and it seems our time will never come, but it will.

We just must not get weary1 and tired of doing things to the best of our ability. When we work smart, more joy will come. It's a promise of God. We have to push2 throughout it all. It's coming. I will always believe that. I just know God has more for me, for you, for us. Even when I get impatient and wonder when my time will come to do the things I see myself doing to help others see God, my faith kicks in. I know God will continue to bless me to be a blessing. Then I'm reminded of the favor, grace, and mercy of God. Then I'm reminded that He will do what He said He would. For, I know the plans3 He has for my life. I heard a pastor somewhere say that everyone is waiting for God to do something. I took that to mean that no matter a person's position, status,…

Be Yourself

God made you who you are.

Don't change.

Some people will try to box you in because they have control issues. They want you to move when they say move. They want to control you like a puppet. Don't let that happen. They don't want you to think for yourself. When they say something, it's the gospel and you have to fall in line. Don't let that happen. People with control issues try to project their insecurities on others and when their views are rejected, they act like it's the other person who has the problem.

There's nothing wrong with you.

Do you hear me?

Nothing.

Stay who you are, because God accepts you. You were wonderfully made