What do you invest in today

Description: God’s kingdom work gets done when we give generously of the time, love, and resources He has provided us.

Verse: Then the King will say, ‘I’m telling the solemn truth: Whenever you did one of these things to someone overlooked or ignored, that was me—you did it to me.’ Matthew 25:40

The call to share with those in need is still one of the ways we can impact our world. In showing love, concern, and generosity to those in need, it may provide an opportunity for sharing the message of the cross. I love to go to other countries on missionary trips, but I can tell you with my intent to bless others, I always seem to get more blessings than I think I leave in each trip.

I am amazed and humbled that the smallest gift is taken with a heart of gratitude and felt like I had given them a large gift. But on my last trip to Africa, I was challenged with what I was doing in my neighborhood. The Pastor of a local area asked me what I was doing to share Christ’s love in my own hometown. And even greater what was I doing to make an impact in my own street sharing the love of Christ.

Many of us tend to believe that we can not make an impact to anyone unless we have riches. To many, what we have is riches, and we tend to keep these blessings for ourselves instead of sharing the blessings with others. Our verse today reminds us that the blessings that God shares with us is not just for us, but for us to share with others.

Taking over a covered dish or fresh baked apple pie, gives us the opportunity to do many things. People today do not see simple acts of kindness, and when received really don’t understand why we do this for them. This gives us the opportunity to show compassion in a world that typically cares only about themselves.
Reflect on the last time someone showed you an act of kindness. How did it make you feel?

Possibly today you could do something really simple, a cup of coffee, some fresh flowers, a package of cookies, or a pot of fresh made soup. It really doesn’t matter when your heart is in it for the right reasons. Don’t do it for attention, but do it to show the love of God in your heart. Maybe you could even ask them if there was something you could pray about. Trust me your act of passion will be noticed, not only by the participants, but God said, “You are doing unto them, you are doing unto me.”

Everyone needs encouragement and acts of kindness. You know how good it makes you feel, but I love it when I hear others say, “I get more blessed in giving, than I do in receiving.” Simple acts of kindness show the world who doesn’t know about God, who God really is –in us. Remember–Giving isn’t just for the wealthy; it’s for all of us.

Prayer: God help me today to look for opportunities to love on others. You have blessed my life and I want to share with others about your love and promises to bless them not only in this life but in heaven when you come back. God please extend my territories and boundaries to extend your love to my neighbors and others. Lord please bless me so I can be a blessing to others for your kingdom. Amen

Leave it there

Description:The spiritual song – Leave It There, offers hope either through a biblical allusion or an understanding that Jesus is a companion through the difficult journey of life.

Verse:

Give all your worries and cares to God, for he cares about you. 1 Peter 5:7 New Living Translation – NLT

Cast thy burden upon the LORD, and he shall sustain thee: he shall never suffer the righteous to be moved. Psalms 55:22 King James Version -KJV

You can hear stories today about people suffering all around us. Today’s thought is about trusting God with any problem and to leave it in his hands. Charles Tindley who wrote this song in the early 1900s experienced slavery and was a great Methodist preacher who shared his faith with his congregation to keep trusting God – no matter what.

Songs – Leave it there, Precious Lord Take My Hand, I Must Tell Jesus, It Is Well, and He Touched Me are songs that help all of us be strong in our faith and beliefs. The person who is suffering from cancer, who can be caught singing in their room, because they know that anything they are going through in this life is only temporary.

Jesus reminded us that there would be trials and tribulations for all of us to face. One thing that was always certain, He would never leave us or forsake us. Today you may be going through a dark moment, and there seems to be no positive thing to look forward to about anything. I am hopeful that as you reminisce over the lyrics of this song you will – leave whatever it is in His hands.

Song:
Leave it there, leave it there,
Take your burden to the Lord and leave it there;
If you trust and never doubt, He will surely bring you out—
Take your burden to the Lord and leave it there. *

Prayer: Lord as we have been able to learn that many of our brothers and sisters were persecuted for their ethnicity but put their trust in you. Thank you for the songs they left for us to remember we can bring anything to you and -leave it there. Amen

*Charles Albert Tindley (1851-1933) was one of the eminent preachers of Methodism at the turn of the twentieth century. Hymnologist James Abbington has called Tindley a “pastor, orator, poet, writer, theologian, social activist, ‘father of African American Hymnody,’ ‘progenitor of African American gospel music’ and ‘prince of preachers.’” Leave It There” by Charles Albert Tindley. The United Methodist Hymnal, No. 522.

Thank You For Giving To The Lord

Today I assisted my wife at our church Job Fair for the community. We offered lunch and drinks for the applicants and different careers recruiters. It wasn’t much, but the “thank you,” replies made us feel appreciated and wanted today. Since retirement, we volunteer a lot, but I often wonder how any organization makes it without their core group of volunteers. Sad to say everywhere, including church, it seems that it’s the same group of volunteers. I once in awhile hear a volunteer grumbling, when there is not enough volunteers for the task.

So if you are one of those wonderful people with a big heart and a big smile, I want to share the word with you on what you’re doing for the kingdom, when you reply, “Yes, I will be glad to help you.” “First, I thank my God through Jesus Christ for you all, that your faith is spoken of throughout the whole world.” (Romans 1:8) You may not think anyone notices what you’re doing, I will tell you there is many, and I am certain they are appreciative of everything you do to support your church, local community and little things that only God and a few others now.

Many times friends or locals will mention your name or point out to you when they are giving you praise for always being reliable and ready for any event. “I thank my God upon every remembrance of you.” (Philippians 1:3) Don’t ever go home feeling what you did today, didn’t have impact in someone’s life. It was no accident that God had your schedule, that event and that person all lined up for you to show the love of God. The smiles you send across the room are not only delightful, but captive to many around you.

The example we show our children, grandchildren are the examples that will lead to a lifetime.”And just as you want men to do to you, you also do to them likewise.”(Luke 6:31) Some of my best memories as a child, is my great grandmother cooking a simple meal to the hobos who came to town on a train, and how she was known all over the network, as a kind woman who would feed anyone. Each hobo always cautioned the resource to take care of this angel from God. I always smiled when they shared their stories to me. I was never afraid, and they all loved and protected my grandma. They always did little jobs for that simple meal. It’s sad the world is not that way anymore, because it sure seemed simple and kind.

Grandma always told me to be kind to others, and share your blessings. Grandma taught me a lot as a small by and those memories have never went away. Grandma knew no stranger, and they all called her “God’s angel.“ Grandma lived out the words, faith hope and love in action. “And now abide faith, hope, love, these three; but the greatest of these is love.” (1 Corinthians 13:13)
Without volunteers my church or any organization is sure to fail. After all, people must complete the work or else nothing will get done! Volunteers sacrifice their time, energy, and sometimes even money in order to contribute to the success of wherever it is they’re volunteering, so make sure you are making them feel valued and appreciated! I enjoyed helping our church and community today. I felt appreciated, but also wanted to thank others who gave up their beautiful day to help someone find a job and possibly meet the recruiter of the job they always dreamed of today.

Volunteering is simple and rewarding. and never feel that you’re not appreciated, because without you, there would not be success. Grandma always told me, “Don’t look for a thank you, God is watching from Heaven and one day you will get the thank you of a lifetime from Him.” Look for away to help your community or local church, you will be blessed more than you will ever know, and God is keeping track too!

Going Home, Soon

Today’s subject is because of a couple things that all of us are going through in our walk with God. We often get perplexed when things are not pleasant, but when I was leaving work after a 10-12 hour day nothing was more rewarding than to know I was going home and was going to be with my loved ones.

The anxiety of watching a clock and putting up with individuals who were not interested in anything but themselves. Working in human resources kept my door always busy listening to many employees who didn’t like what a policy stated, or what the company became. It was difficult everyday to balance the emotions and insure that each employee would be safe and do their job. Jesus reminded us in the last days that these would be common for us.
It could be the confidence that enabled me to come to work and what they came to work for could be different. My confidence no matter how long I worked, this was just –temporary. I had something better awaiting me down this road of life. “Our confidence of a better and enduring possession in heaven will be richly rewarded.  We must wait and rest in this hope until Jesus comes.” (Hebrews 10:34-39)The confidence of knowing that I had something to keep me encouraged no matter how bad the circumstances faced my life.

It still was important to live the “Christ-like” life and to be an example for others. God reminded me daily that I was the light in the darkened world. That could be my work, neighborhood and even those close to me. “We should live godly lives, focused on the blessed hope and glorious appearing of our Jesus.” (Titus 2:11-15) It was and always be important to remind the brothers and sisters that are hope in not here –but where we will be going someday.

We should pray for “divine opportunities,” to share our faith and bless people to show the love of God. We all get down and have bad days. And I am always encouraged when someone smiles at me or says an word of encouragement. It is important we share the hope and faith in Christ, so we stay in the race to the finish line in our new home –heaven. “We should be ready to talk about our hope, even to those who persecute us.” (1 Peter 3:13-17)

Paul is my favorite apostle, how he “kept the faith,”all of his words in the bible reminded us of our Christian responsibilities and to stay busy until Jesus our Savior came and rescued us. It is important everyday in our devotion to remind ourselves, that Jesus is coming back, and coming back for us. Paul knew he would be raised up with Jesus.  Therefore, he did not lose heart during afflictions because he was looking toward things unseen. ( 2 Corinthians 4:14-18) Paul had hope in God that there would be a resurrection of the dead.  (Acts 24:14-16)

Just as I had to be safety minded when I drove home, I also need to be discerning of what the situations that are going on around me. There will be many people who will want to take away our joy of Christ’s return. The enemy of our soul will not quit his job to take away your faith and hope in God. He knows his days are numbered and will do everything to –kill–steal– and destroy us. John reminded us, “Antichrists Everywhere You Look Children, time is just about up. You heard that Antichrist is coming. Well, they’re all over the place, antichrists everywhere you look. That’s how we know that we’re close to the end. ” (1 John 2:18)

I long for the day where we will all go to Heaven. But, for now we all have jobs to encourage, pray and deliver the message–soon–very soon– this will all be over and we will be going home to our heavenly home and enjoy the surroundings of heaven with Jesus and our big family of God.

Prayer, God we all need your help for whatever amount of time is left here on earth, to finish the job and show as many as we can your precious gift of salvation and the promise of an eternal home in heaven with you. Help us to stay focused to the course you have all of us on, and knowing soon we will be going Home. Amen.

TEXT: God Is Not Dead, He is Still Alive

God is not dead….

Tonight my wife and I enjoyed a dinner date and movie with some great friends. We agreed to see the “God’s Note Dead 2,” movie after dinner. When we saw the first movie; it had you excited as something stirred your faith, and also seeing non-believers making last minute eternity decisions, choosing God as their Savior and everyone else excited as if they witnessed a miracle. And at the end as a watcher you were asked to send the Text, “Gods not Dead, He is still Alive.”

The second sequel of this movie is the test of faith, and finding how easy it is to have a relationship with God. But a few of the actors were put to the test with their new faith in Christ, by going to trial for believing and sharing God in the school.

I am not so old that I cannot remember when we used to pray in school, have religious education once a week, but not for my kids, my grandkids and unless we change the world, possibly my great grandchildren. The heavens rejoice when one sinner comes home.
“Count on it—there’s more joy in heaven over one sinner’s rescued life than over ninety-nine good people in no need of rescue. ” (Luke 15:7) Can you imagine what heaven is like when revival goes off in a town? Probably the same excitement we saw at the end of the movie, when the viewers were just as excited with the proclamation, “God’s not Dead, He is still Alive.”

As the world seems to be edging closer to the end, many of the earthly saints are looking up to see the risen savior to come back, and rapture his children home, There are places on earth where Christians are persecuted even to death, but they willingly leave the message to their persecutors, neighbors, family and community one thing, “I have decided to follow Jesus, No Turning Back, No Turning Back.”

“The living God is God of the living, not the dead. You’re way, way off base.” (Mark 12:27)

Confess–Prayer–Read

Do you use CPR everyday to help keep your relationship with God from failing. I read this from a great site http://www.neverthirsty.org and thought this was a great way to help a new believer. As a new believer CPR is an essential to keep the new person fed spiritually.

We couldn’t save ourselves from the unrighteousness and sinful life we were living. We knew the best for us was to return the prodigal son/daughter journey back to our Heavenly Father. So confessing our sins quickly demonstrates we don’t want to live a sinful live.

C” is for confess.
On the other hand, if we admit our sins—make a clean breast of them—he won’t let us down; he’ll be true to himself. He’ll forgive our sins and purge us of all wrongdoing. (1 JOHN 1:9)

When you came to Christ, you just knew you needed God to help, you may have not understood everything, but you chose life over death and confessed all your sins to God.

“P” is for praying.
Don’t fret or worry. Instead of worrying, pray. Let petitions and praises shape your worries into prayers, letting God know your concerns. (PHILIPPINES 4:6)

As we remember our first prayer is was not fancy, rehearsed, it was words that someone either helped us, or as simple as, “God I need you, please come into my life. Please forgive me of my sins, and I surrender my life to you.”

R” is for reading the Word of God.
Study to shew thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth. (2 TIMOTHY 2:15)

Reading the word is essential to learn everything about God. There is a book that has all the answers. You may at start not be able to understand everything, but get something that will get you in the word.

CPR is a great aide to bring someone back to life. But this CPR should enable you to not to return back to your old sinful ways. Trust me when you miss one of these steps, you will know the importance of using your CPR daily.

This is essential for spiritual growth and victory over sin.

Don’t you know, you are blessed?

Often times things or incidents, take away the reality, we should get from a situation . I am sure all of you have went through a terrible season in your life, and cried out, “Why Me Lord?”

I know that I have said this many times in my life when I didn’t enjoy the inconvenience a person or situation placed in my life. The game of chess requires patience and time, if you don’t look at each possible move in your life, you have the potential of losing the game quick.

It has always been amazing to me, when a chess game takes longer periods of time, because neither opponent wants to “lose the game.” But life isn’t it the same way? Do we take longer thoughts when we see the impact of our choices? Those individuals that suffer from addictions, have only one thought continuously – – where am I going to get my next fix?

Being content with our lives, I believe allow us to really understand how blessed we are, and being thankful for – -what I have – – and not being sad or blue because someone has something I don’t have. Each of us have blessings I think are uniquely designed to help us AND help others.

It is easy to be frustrated about anything, but what if you looked at your situation differently, for the good things in your life versus the bad things. Just suppose you think of this, “What if you didn’t have the good things in your life?

Why me? Only suggest a simple answer if I am trusting God to be for “all the things” in my life, I am certain he will carefully help me through the difficult seasons as well. Blessings are from two people — those who know they’re blessed — and those who want to bless. I strive to be both, but admit many times my focus is on me and not others.

Survey your surroundings and ask yourself:

Do I thank God for the blessings in my life?
Do I place more focus on the things that irritate me?
Do I allow myself to be a blessing to those that need to see and feel a real blessing?

Here is the answer to the question why me.

Suffering for Doing Good. Summing up: Be agreeable, be sympathetic, be loving, be compassionate, be humble. That goes for all of you, no exceptions. No retaliation. No sharp-tongued sarcasm. Instead, bless—that’s your job, to bless. You’ll be a blessing and also get a blessing. (1 Peter 3:8-9)