This past weekend, a special friend and I were conversing about the many hot political issues that have been happening in our country and in doing so we also spoke about the 9 senseless murders in Charleston, South Carolina. He told me how he was having a tough time dealing with those murders and how the shooter reloaded five-times while they pleaded for their lives. I understood exactly what he was saying because it always bothers me to hear about Christians being murdered.. I pay more attention to those types of killings because although it’s some-thing that’s been happening around the world for a while, it’s starting to become more and more prevalent on our own home front.
“Take delight in the Lord, and he will give you the desires of your heart.” (Psalm 37:4)
As we continued to talk, I told him that those 9 Christians showed their killer first-hand what being a Christian was about.. They were in God’s House.. They opened their group up to a complete stranger and by doing so made him feel comfortable by showing him love. They also shared God’s infallible Word with him during their Bible study. In my opinion this was an example of Christianity at its finest. One of the news stories that I read after his arrest stated, that he said that he had a difficult time going through with it his plans after everyone in the group was so nice and inclusive with him.. That Bible study group planted the seed in this troubled young man’s heart and he felt the conviction from the Holy Spirit but ignored it. The families of these 9 Christians did the unthinkable during the most difficult time of there lives. They publicly forgave this young man for his terrible act that he committed against their loved ones and did so during their grieving process. They didn’t wish bad upon him but instead they showed him the love of forgiveness. In our book that was an awesome act of Christianity but yet it was Ignored and lost in our society because we were too busy having debates about the Confederate flag..
“Within your temple, O God, we meditate on your unfailing love.” (Psalm 48:9)
Jesus is Life and Light in abundance. As you spend time “soaking” in His Presence, you will be energized and lightened. When you constantly commune with Him, you transfer your heavy burdens to His strong shoulders. When you gaze at Him, you gain His perspective on your life. Your alone time with Him is essential for unscrambling your thoughts and smoothing out the day before you. You just be willing to fight for your precious time with Him. Opposition will com in many forms of distraction: your desire to rest a little longer in bed; Satan placing thoughts and worries in your mind; the pressure of family, friends, and from within to spend your time more productively. As you grow in your desire to please Jesus above all else, you gain strength to resist these opponents. Delight yourself in Him because He is the deepest Desire of your heart.
“Let the beloved of the Lord rest secure in him, for he shields him all day long, and the one the Lord loves rests between his shoulders.” (Deuteronomy 33:12)
MY CHALLENGE PRAYER for YOU..
I hope you all have a TERRFIC day… Blessing & much love…D
As I wake up on this GLORIOUS Monday morning to start my new week, I can rest assure that no matter how frustrated I get with what happens in the name of politics and in this world that we live in, I will some day spend eternity in heaven with my Lord & Savior. When I look back on my days of walking in darkness, being controlled by the world and its sinful ways, I can’t help but ask myself,
WHAT IF…I would’ve died during that time?
WHAT IF…Jesus would’ve returned?
WHAT IF…I would’ve never heard The Gospel?
“It is God who works in you to will and to act in order to fulfill his good purpose.” (Philippians 2:13)
Although I have broken free from the shackles of sin, I do however still have faults and I do fall short daily. I still have a my moments when I let politics get the best of me.. My reaction to the news from the SCOTUS on Friday had nothing to do with the actual sin of homosexuality. My reaction was solely directed towards the Supreme Court “redefining” something they never defined in the first place. After spending 25 years in the floral industry, I think it’s pretty safe to say that I’ve probably been around and formed more friendships with more gay men and women than the majority. To be perfectly honest, I never had a problem hugging my gay men that were customers, no more than I did hugging the straight female. Did I agree with their choice of lifestyle? No, but that didn’t make me care for them or love them any less… Nor did it change the way I treated them. The same goes for my customers that that had committed adultery or the ones that had drinking problems, did drugs, looked at pornography etc… etc… Sin is sin… Their sin is no greater than my sin. I don’t, have never, never will think, act or treat like I’m better in a better place than someone else.. My salvation allows me to go freely to God, often several times a day to seek refuge & forgiveness for my failures. He has transformed my life. He has changed my thoughts, my actions & my ways. He has blessed me and continues to bless me far more than I deserve. I have found my security in knowing Him, He is the One that died for me and set me free.
What about you?
“Then you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free.” (John 8:32)
Jesus is the TRUTH; the One who came to set you free. When the Holy Spirit controls your mind and actions more fully, you become free in Him. You are increasingly released to become the one He created you to be. This is a work that He does in you as you as you yield to His Spirit. God does His best work when you sit still in His Presence and focus entirely on Him.
Let God’s thoughts burst freely in your consciousness, stimulating abundant Life. He is the Way and the Truth and the Life. As you follow Him, He leads you along paths of newness; ways you have never imagined. Don’t worry about what is on the road map up ahead because He wants you to find your security in knowing Him, the One who died to set you free.
Jesus answered, “I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.” (John 14:6)
MY CHALLENGE PRAYER for YOU.. Find your security in the One whom died for you & set you free..
I hope you all have a MAGNIFICENT day… Blessing & much love…D
There’s something about waking up in the morning and going directly into prayer. Claiming victory over the day in which you’re about to begin. Asking God to protect your thoughts, to command your words, to guide your foot steps, to expand your boundaries and to bless your day abundantly. Starting your day like this allows you walk confidently throughout your day and not be worried about what’s lurking around the corner.
Yesterday’s news from the SCOTUS reminded me of a couple of years ago, after Wendy Davis made her famous filibuster speech and became the liberal media darln’. The next day I wrote in my devotional my opinion on a “woman’s right to choose” in what she has to say happens to her body. Several women were offended by my post that day because they failed to understand what I was saying and thought that I was down-playing the man’s role in the situation. I’ve learned and remember from my own experience that when one feels some sort of conviction, it often makes one’s thoughts become irrational. This happens because it feels like your being attacked personally and our natural thing to do is to attack back. My post that day was clearly in reference to the argument about a “woman’s choice” to do whatever she wishes to do with her body. That’s the argument that you always hear from the liberal news media and the pro-choice advocates. I have yet to hear a woman to say that the reason I want an abortion is because the guy that got me pregnant used me to be just a notch in his belt and is an irresponsible, arrogant loser.
I have plenty of thoughts about “men” that treat women as objects instead of an individual. I have even a bigger problem with men that proclaim, “thus sayeth The Lord” but will jump at the chance to go have lunch at places like Hooters, Redneck Haven, Twin Peaks or Bone Daddy’s and even more so if they’re married. I have problems with “Christian” men that fail to lead there families as they’re commanded to do in the Bible and I have posted many times voicing my opinion. I’ve been posting my daily devotional now going on almost 3 years and not once have more men liked my devotion more than women. Not once have men commented more on my post than women. It’s my opinion that our country is in a full downward spiral because men refuse to step up to the plate and be the Spiritual Leaders. Sometime during the last 50 years it has become more “manly” to not be a Bible carrying, God loving man.. Perhaps it has to do with how our society has chosen to portray men as weak and uneducated.
“In the morning, Lord, you hear my voice; in the morning I lay my requests before you and wait expectantly.” (Psalm 5:3)
As you get out of bed this morning, be aware that God is with you. It’s early and you may not be thinking clearly just yet, but He is. Your early morning thoughts lean more towards anxious ones since you’re eager to get your day started dive into prayer to get connected to Him as soon as possible. While in prayer, invite God into your thoughts by whispering His Holy Name. Your day will suddenly turn bright and feel a lot more user friendly. You can not dread a day that is vibrant with God’s Presence. Your confidence will increase just by knowing that He with you and that you will never face anything alone. Your anxiety stems from anticipating your problems that will occur in your day. No matter happens you can cope with whatever happens because together you and Him can make it through anything that occurs. It’s this type of relationship that will give you confidence to face the day with a smile or your face and with a cheerful attitude.
“You, God, are my God, earnestly I seek you; I thirst for you, my whole being longs for you, in a dry and parched land where there is no water.”(Psalm 63:1)
MY CHALLENGE PRAYER for YOU…. Seek the Lord and ask Him to guide your thoughts and actions thru this day.
I hope you all have a GREAT day… Blessing & much love…D
It’s quite evident that there are a lot of people in this world today that are not and have not taste the Good of God. Instead they have made the decision to turn their backs on Him and take control of the reigns and make decisions according to their own will. Politicians tend to do this once they get into office. Two years ago here in Texas we witnessed Wendy Davis taking a stand for late term abortions but yet she called herself a Christian. Thankfully she met her political doom in the Texas Governor’s race.
Last week after the horrendous shooting that took 9 Christian lives from an African American Church in South Carolina, like with all things politicians have jumped at the chance to advance their political agenda at the expense of those 9 lives based solely from a picture of the shooter with a Confederate Flag. Since then there has been political witch hunt to ban the Confederate flag across our Nation. Regardless the flag will always be a part of American History.. As with most things for some its past may represent something bad and for others it represents their heritage but to advance a political agenda in exchange for 9 Christian lives is irresponsible.
I believe the damage to our Nation is way too far gone to ever come back. We are living in a modern day Sodom & Gomorrah and our judgment day is fast approaching. I refuse to spend my time and energy focusing on the political maneuvers of our failed two party system that has lost its way because of greed and crookedness. If Washington was to be transparent and open the books up, I think we would find that 99.9 % of the politicians should be sent to prison. I will spend my time staying focused and taking refuge in the Lord…
“Taste and see that the Lord is good; blessed is the one who takes refuge in him.” (Psalm 34:8)
Taste and see that God is good. This command contains an invitation to experience God’s Living Presence and it contains a promise as well. The more you experience God, the more you will become convinced of His goodness. Understanding and knowing this is essential to your walk of faith. When adversity strikes, your instinct is to doubt God’s goodness but His ways are mysterious even to those who know Him intimately. As the heavens are higher than the earth, so are God’s ways and thoughts higher than your ways and thoughts. Do not try to fathom His ways but instead spend your time & energy enjoying experiencing His goodness.
“For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways,” declares the Lord. “As the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways and my thoughts than your thoughts.” (Isaiah 55:8-9)
MY CHALLENGE PRAYER for YOU.. Taste the goodness of God!!!
I hope you all have a FANTASTIC day… Blessing & much love…D
I love a good book.. Yesterday I was scrolling through my iPad and came across a book that I downloaded a couple years ago. It was a book that my good friend and brother in Christ Rusty Burson recommended to me called The Travelers Gift by Andy Andrews. I remember once I started reading it, I didn’t want to stop. I finished it in less than 24hrs and then I actually read it a second time at a slower pace so that I could really soak it all in.. I love the principles that that the book teaches. One of those principles that the Travelers Gift spoke about was choices. The choices that we make daily are our own decisions.. If one day you look around and don’t like what you see in your life then it’s your own fault and no one else’s. You have chosen your path and you should take full responsibility for the choices that you made. Your circumstances shouldn’t be blamed on someone else..
I encourage you to read it.. I promise you won’t be disappointed…
“Let the morning bring me word of your unfailing love, for I have put my trust in you. Show me the way I should go, for to you I entrust my life.” (Psalm 143:8)
Rest with God for a while. Recently your journey might have felt like a steep, rugged uphill climb. Your path ahead in all likelihood is shrouded in uncertainty. Don’t look back nor forward but instead focus your attention on God whom is your constant Companion. Trust that He will equip you fully for whatever awaits you on your journey ahead. God uses time as a protection for you because you couldn’t bear to see all your life at once. Although He is not limited by time, it’s in the present moment that He meets with you. Refresh yourself in His company and take deep breaths of His Loving Presence. The highest level of trust is to enjoy Him moment by moment. Remember that God is with you and watching over you wherever you go.
“I am with you and will watch over you wherever you go, and I will bring you back to this land. I will not leave you until I have done what I have promised you.” (Genesis 28:15)
MY CHALLENGE PRAYER for YOU.. Allow God to show you the way. Make the choice to include God in your day & decisions.
I hope you have a TERRIFIC day… Blessing & much love…D
I hope you all have a TREMENDOUS day… Blessing & much love…D
A few years back Keri & I went to the taping of James Robinson’s Life Today tv show. Pastor Jimmy Evans (whom is the host Marriage Today along with his wife Karen) was being interviewed because he had just finished writing a book called Lifelong Love Affair was due out within a few months. A bonus for being at the taping was that we got a copy.
I’m of the belief that marriage is more important than your job, your career, your hobbies ..etc..etc.. and it should be treated that way as well. Meaning that you should always be willing to invest in your marriage as you do those other things… I believe that you should spend the money to attend marriage conferences and retreats, buy books to read together, have date night 2-3 times a month. I’ve seen many people say they can’t afford to buy books but yet they buy Starbucks every morning and go out to eat for lunch & dinner 4-5 times a week. I’ve heard people say they cant afford retreats or conferences but yet the have memberships in gun clubs & health clubs.. If you want a lasting marriage, marriage must be made a priority instead of an option.
Keri & I read Jimmy’s book within a couple of weeks of getting it and upon finishing it we discovered that there is an 8 week study of the book in the back. We made the decision to do the study in December so we could then do the recommended 3 day vision retreat where we do a workbook called Mountain Top Marriage. As always got busy, so we put it off and kept putting it off which then lead to it going on the back burner which later lead it to being off the radar map. I made the commitment to Keri that we would do the study because I know it’s important not to get complacent in marriage but it was something she was looking forward to. In all honesty, I like doing them as well but I don’t like that we sometimes have to rehash the bad times which always makes for an emotional stress filled evening. I know in order to grow closer there will be times of discomfort and there will be times when tears are going to be shed. For me the tears are my reminder of ALL the hurt, the damage & the pain that I have caused in our marriage. It is a reminder of the severity of the choices we make in everyday life and the consequences that we could’ve faced. I’m not sure what it is about her tears that troubles me the most.. Maybe it’s because it’s a reminder that she loves me so much but yet I have made her shed tears yet again. Maybe it’s a reminder that I don’t deserve someone that loves me like she does. Maybe its a reminder of all my short-comings when it comes to our relationship & marriage. I’m not certain why her tears make me retreat behind the wall and make me want to crawl under a rock but I know in time God will grant me the ability to face those tears like a man of God should and embrace them because they belong to the woman of my dreams. They belong to the woman that loves me beyond what I could ever imagine. They belong to a woman that apologizes to me for being hurt by my actions. Lord, the next time I see the tears flow I ask You to remind me that You are by my side. I want You to help me not be overwhelmed.
“The Lord is my shepherd, I lack nothing. He makes me lie down in green pastures, he leads me beside quiet waters, he refreshes my soul. He guides me along the right paths for his name’s sake. Even though I walk through the darkest valley, I will fear no evil, for you are with me; your rod and your staff, they comfort me.” (Psalm 23:1-4)
Stay calmly and conscious of God today, no matter what. Remember that He goes before you as well as with you into the day. Nothing takes Him by surprise. He will not allow circumstances to overwhelm you, so as long as you look towards Him. God will help you cope with whatever the moment presents. Collaborating with Him brings blessings that far outweigh all your troubles. Awareness of His Presence contains joy that can endure all eventualities.
“Therefore we do not lose heart. Though outwardly we are wasting away, yet inwardly we are being renewed day by day. For our light and momentary troubles are achieving for us an eternal glory that far outweighs them all.” (2 Corinthians 4:16-17)
MY CHALLENGE PRAYER for YOU.. Stay calm no matter what and don’t be overwhelmed by circumstances because God is with you.
I hope you all have a WONDERFUL day… Blessing & much love…D
Sunday was a special day with it being Father’s Day.. I’ve been a father now for over 20 years and I must say that it’s been the best 20 years of my life. My boys mean the world to me. As I was driving to church Sunday morning, I received a notification from Facebook because of a post. I was shocked when I saw it from my oldest son Zakk because that’s unlike him. As I read his post, my heart swelled up and tears began to flow. He had posted wishing me a Happy Father’s Day. It touched my heart deeply. Towards the end of church, I felt my phone vibrate from a text msg and once I got to the car I check my msgs and it was a text from my youngest son Mick. He had sent me a msg wishing me a Happy Father’s Day too. Once again my heart swelled with joy and the tears flowed again.
I’ve tried to instill in my boys the many things that my dad instilled in me and after reading their msgs, I think they might have listened some. I wanted so bad to be an influence on my boys like my dad influenced me. One of the most important things my dad taught me was that I’m responsible for my family and their well-being no matter the circumstances I have to be willing to make the necessary sacrifices to do whatever it takes to make sure they are taken care of each & every day. In my almost 47 years of life, I’ve watched my dad transform from a man that was hell bent & hell bound, to a man through God’s grace & perseverance helped him defeat lung cancer and then turned him into a man that is committed to his Lord & Savior. God never gave up on my dad, even thought He could’ve very easily done so many times years ago. My dad is a prime example of the different paths that God allows us to take to get to Him. Yes, God would’ve loved for my dad to have started serving Him when he was 20 but instead He allowed my dad to chose his own path to get to Him. It was a long difficult path filled with many highs and lows and a lot of wrong doings.. It was a path that my dad has openly shared with my boys which has also helped influence them. It was a path that now allows my dad to walk humbly with God and speak openly about his relationship with Him.
“He has shown you, O mortal, what is good. And what does the Lord require of you? To act justly and to love mercy and to walk humbly with your God.” (Micah 6:8
Stay on the high road with God.. There are a lot of voices in the world that clamor for your attention. Each voice tries to divert you to another path. God calls you to walk closely with Him. He wants you to soak up His Presence and live in His Peace. That has been God’s unique design and plan for you before the world began. God calls each of His children to a different path that has been distinctly designed for you. God’s path for you is the only one that is right for you. You just need to act justly, to love mercifully, and to walk humbly with Him wherever He leads you.
“You are God’s handiwork, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do.” (Ephesians 2:10)
MY CHALLENGE PRAYER for YOU… Act justly, love mercifully and walk humbly with God.
I hope you all have a TERRIFIC day… Blessing & much love…D