Psalm 34:4-5 “I asked the Lord for help, and he answered me. He saved me from all that I feared. Those who go to him for help are happy, and they are never disgraced.” (NCV)
Time, and time again, we all will face challenges that’ll require us to ask for help! I’m reminded; of a story of a 5-year-old boy name Timothy, who struggled at tying his shoes. It was a few weeks before school was about to start, so Timothy asked his farther to help him learn how to tie his shoes. Everyday, Timothy’s father would help him practice tying his shoes. One day, Timothy thought he finally had the technique of tying his shoes, so he left his father’s side, and went into the next room to tie his shoes by himself. After one attempt after another, Timothy struggled with the task of tying his shoes, and became discouraged; BUT suddenly, Timothy remembered that his father was only one room away, so he ran and asked for his father’s help again.
In Psalm 34, David remembers the same revelation as Timothy. David was in trouble and didn’t know how his problem was going to be solved. So he started to praise God like he lost his mind and asked for the Lord’s help. Later in Psalm 34 David proclaims one of the greatest truths in the Bible. He says, “People who do what is right may have many problems, but the Lord will solve them all.”
Just like Timothy and David we find ourselves in situations where we need help. We often focus our minds on the crisis instead of our “Christ” who exists! Always remember God is bigger than your problems, and with Him, you will have all the help you’ll ever need. Remember your H.E.L.P. is “His Ever Lasting Presence.”
Prayer: God we thank you that we have your ever lasting presence. No matter how big our problems may seem, we know that you’re able to solve them all. We thank you that nothing is bigger or greater than YOU! Amen!
March 21, 2012
Check out this video: Watch the whole thing!
March 19, 2012
2 Timothy 1:7
by Tyrell Berkeley
Have you ever had a moment in your life where you knew what you "should've" been doing, but didn't have enough "discipline" to do it?
The definition of discipline is, "training EXPECTED to produce a specific character or pattern of behavior, especially training that produces moral or mental improvement." In other words, discipline is controlled behavior resulting from disciplinary training. Self-control.
I'm reminded of an football player when I think about discipline and here's why. A football player in the off season continues to go through training and conditioning, to prepare for the upcoming season. However, in that process what really makes the player better is how hard he chooses to work. If he slacks off and does the bare minimum, then his game-time performance will show that. If the player works hard to put his best foot forward, he will fight through what seems painful to others. His discipline and preparation will equip him to focus and play a great game. That's not saying "he will" win every game for the team, because it's a team sport; however, if the entire team PRACTICED the same thing then their chances to win are more likely.
How does this translate to our lives? We too have moments in life when we are being trained, conditioned and worked out. We know exactly what we should be doing and how to do it, but when the going gets tough, we just give up or throw in the towel. If we condition ourselves to practice hard in our off-time from church and off-time away from people to specifically work hard in the word behind close doors, then when the trial comes we will be prepared. When the problem comes again, you will be equipped to handle it because you trained for it already in the off-time.
Prayer: Lord God I pray to you today asking for strength. Strength of which only comes from you to discipline myself in the moments which seems hard, but knowing that the outcome will be greater. Lead me by your spirit into what I should focus on in my off-time and I'll be careful to always give you the glory for it! In Jesus name... Amen
March 14, 2012
"Knowledge Versus Wisdom"
1 Corinthians 2:1-14
by Brittany Jones
Confession: I am a Google addict. If I have a question, need content knowledge, or am simply curious about a new project, friend or concept, I often run to Google for information . Where else can you get search results in .23 seconds? It doesn't help that my cellular phone and e-Reader both operate on the Android system (created by Google). It is so bad, that I also use Google as a spell check when writing text messages to my friends. It's REALLY BAD! And if you are like me, you have probably used Google a few times today already, as it a great resource and tool.
I say all of this to say there is very little Google can't find, but dare you search for God's purpose or will for your life and Google will fall short (ask me how I know). Where as Google gives knowledge, the Holy Spirit gives wisdom. It's with the wisdom of God that we find understanding in the purpose of our life.
In Paul's letter to Corinth, Paul made clear that those who seek God through his Holy Spirit will "speak a message of wisdom among the mature, but not the wisdom of this age or of the rulers of this age (1 Corinthians 2:6)" because "we have not received the spirit of the world but the Spirit who is from God, that we may understand what God has freely given us. This is what we speak, not in words taught us by human wisdom but in words taught us by the Spirit, expressing spiritual truths (versus 12-13)."
As you seek God today, I challenge you to seek His wisdom through his Holy Spirit, that you may find understanding.
God, thank you for revealing unto us another avenue to get closer to you. Thank you for your gifts of life, love and joy. As we move forward with our day, reveal to us your wisdom, so that we may fulfill your will. In Jesus' name, amen.
March 12, 2012
by Hubert Anderson
"I have strength for all things in Christ who empowers me [I am ready for anything and equal to anything through him who infuses inner strength into me; I am self-sufficient in Christ's sufficiency]." - Philippians 4:13, (Amp. Version)
The apostle Paul was one of the most famous people in the New Testament church. He was a committed and dedicated missionary, who started churches everywhere he could. He has the majority authorship of the New Testament. Even though he had tremendous triumphs, he also experience difficulties. When Paul wrote to the Ephesians, Philippians, Colossians, and Philemon he had a difficult journey doing the will of Christ. In his letters, he mentions through his encounters of spreading the good news, he face many hardships such as: being beaten, having rocks thrown at him, being robbed, surviving a ship wreck, and at times he barely had clothing to keep himself warm. But still though out all the challenges he face, he still persevere through them all.
Tyler Perry is one of the most popular play writers in America today! But despite his achievements, he had a hard journey before his success. Tyler grew up in a poor and abusive house hold, which made him want to commit suicide in his early adult years. He even had a difficult time finding a roof over his head, causing him to live out of his own vehicle. Until one day, he was watching the Oprah Winfrey Show, were she was mentioning to her audience and viewers, how it was therapeutic to write your feelings down in letter form. After viewing the show, Tyler took Oprah's advice and began to put his feelings on paper. After constantly writing, Tyler's letters became plays and he felt that they were good enough to go on stage. To his disappointment they failed and he was left penniless, but that didn't stop him. Tyler saved up money and move to Atlanta, and once again his plays failed again. Continuing to be determined, he finally got his big break, and soon after he launched a new play, an staging of Bishop T.D. Jakes book, "Woman Thou Art Loosed" which became a classic. The play grossed in revenue and became a live feature film. Since then Tyler has created numerous of plays, and some of which, have become highly successful films; making him not only one of Hollywood's best play writers, but also, one of Hollywood's best producers, directors, and actors.
When you first hear and read about the stories of Paul the apostle and Tyler Perry, you notice a lot of their accomplishments, but they also had many disappointments; but through the tough times, they continued to stay focus on there goals. During this New Year, what ever challenges that come you way, keep your eyes on the prize, and remember what Philippians 4:13 tells us, "You can do all things through Christ!"
Prayer: Oh heavenly father, please continue to give me strength and courage to achieve my goals. It is through your grace and mercy that I will succeed in all my endeavors. In Christ Jesus name AMEN!
Question: What are some of your approaches for fulfilling your goals?
March 5-6, 2012
"God is chasing after you...but what are you chasing after?”
"Pursued By God”
by JT Logan
I absolutely love watching action shows and movies. I find great joy in watching things get blown up on Mission:Impossible, the adventures of 007, Fast & Furious, Rush Hour, and of course re-runs of 24 (and yes I still love Jesus). What makes action movies so great...are the chase scenes. Usually, there is a good guy and not-so-good guy. Whether it’s a BMW, a Bugatti, or even a hoopty, one of these guys usually gets chased.
Here’s the point: God is faster than any car and more powerful than anyone. God’s love and grace is instantaneous, immediate, indescribable...simply incredible. I’m so grateful that God is chasing after us, more than we chase after Him. Because can we really catch up to Him? I believe what we can do, is accept the invitation to get in the “car” with Him. It doesn’t matter where you are coming from (your past), with God as your driver his only concern is where you’re going to (your future). That’s why God pursues us (all of us).
I dare you to let God chase after you. Romans 8:28-29 tells us that, “We know that in all things God works for good with those who love him, those whom he has called according to his purpose. Those whom God had already chosen he also set apart to become like his Son, so that the Son would be the first among many believers, (GNT).” Give God your heart, He pursues those who love Him. Let’s be obedient to His will. I can only speak for myself, I know I sometimes chase after everything but God; my dreams, my goals, my desires. Whenever I chase after those things, I always crash. But God...always out of His concern for me forgives me, and rushes quickly to my rescue. Join me in letting God be our driver, because He alone can take us to where we’re suppose to be in the first place.
Let’s pray: Wonderful and loving God, I now give you the keys of my life. I’m yours and thanks for taking me as I am. Transform me from the inside-out. Please continue to lead and guide me. Show me the beauty of your purpose and plan for my life. I trust you and thank you for chasing after me. In the matchless name of Jesus I pray...Amen.
One-day Alicia’s boss came into her office with a unique opportunity for her career advancement; little did Alicia know what her boss had in store for her. She was offered a promotion within the company as a new department manager, however the department Alicia was recommended to take was unorganized. Alicia had no experience as a leader, especially in the type of field she was asked to be positioned in. However, Alicia’s boss saw the potential she had to lead in numerous occasions in previous projects, and noticed the leadership qualities that she had within.
Just like Alicia, God sees something in us that we may not see in ourselves. He sees our dreams before we do, and he sees our purpose before we can even imagine it. God sees our ultimate velocity and knows how much we can bear.
Jonah knew that God saw something in him, but instead of running towards God, he ran away from Him. What will you do? Will you chase after your fear or chase after God? Will you chase after your desires or His? In the end we often get challenged with different trials and tribulations, but the perception is that if we start with just a small amount of faith in GOD and use that and believe he will never fail us, the faith will soon grow. The more faith you have, the more power you will have. Speak Life…..
Father GOD, I’m coming to you now honest and sincere. Help me with my faith, help me to only put my trust in you and you alone. Lead me in the path that I should go, and help me to understand what your plan is for my life. I’ve tried it enough myself, only to end up where I started. So GOD, give me insight and direction and I will continue to seek after you. AMEN.
14 So the trouble is not with the law, for it is spiritual and good. The trouble is with me, for I am all too human, a slave to sin. 15 I don’t really understand myself, for I want to do what is right, but I don’t do it. Instead, I do what I hate. 16 But if I know that what I am doing is wrong, this shows that I agree that the law is good. 17 So I am not the one doing wrong; it is sin living in me that does it. 18 And I know that nothing good lives in me, that is, in my sinful nature.* I want to do what is right, but I can’t. 19 I want to do what is good, but I don’t. I don’t want to do what is wrong, but I do it anyway. 20 But if I do what I don’t want to do, I am not really the one doing wrong; it is sin living in me that does it. 21 I have discovered this principle of life—that when I want to do what is right, I inevitably do what is wrong. 22 I love God’s law with all my heart. 23 But there is another power* within me that is at war with my mind. This power makes me a slave to the sin that is still within me. 24 Oh, what a miserable person I am! Who will free me from this life that is dominated by sin and death? 25 Thank God! The answer is in Jesus Christ our Lord. So you see how it is: In my mind I really want to obey God’s law, but because of my sinful nature I am a slave to sin.