Showing posts from March, 2014

Get Yourself Out There

Do you not know that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit, who is in you, whom you have received from God? You are not your own; you were bought at a price. Therefore honor God with your body.”- 1 Corinthians 6:19-20 No matter how hard we try to honor God with this physical shell, we will find out that the body is a follower. It does whatever the mind tells it to. It goes wherever the Spirit leads. The Spirit will most likely be willing and the flesh(body) will cave in. Your body houses the power of the Spirit of God. God put it in you to make certain that you had an opportunity to trust His Spirit and take the body along for the ride. That ride is designed to be exciting, exhilarating and headed for a successful destination. So why are so many people living below their potential and missing the ride of their lives? Perhaps it's because our desire to satisfy the natural is greater than our willingness to acquire the supernatural. Feed your spirit, renew your mind and take yo…

Praying for You!

3 John 1:2 "Dear friend, I pray that you may enjoy good health and that all may go well with you, even as your soul is getting along well."When was the last time that you just stopped to pray for something good to happen in the lives of those that you are connected to? For them to have good health and for all of their needs to be met? Sometimes we get so wrapped up in "our world" that we don't see the difficulties and struggles that others are facing that are right next to us. There is a great nugget of truth hidden in this verse. Our health and well being is directly impacted by our spiritual well being! Your SOUL is the house of your mind, will and emotions. In others words, the thoughts, actions and feelings are there. Yet they can still go haywire. Ever lost your mind, done something stupid or felt broken-hearted? Me too! We need to do some soul-searching. The only way to keep the soul in check is to feed the spirit. The spirit not only sustains us, it keep…

Star Search

Philippians 2:14 Do everything without grumbling or arguing, so that you may become blameless and pure, “children of God without fault in a warped and crooked generation.” It's very hard sometimes to respond in a manner worthy of being a follower of Christ. Usually, we tend to lash out and say whatever we are thinking with minds that have not been renewed by the Word of God at all. It could be because we are hurt or tired. It may just be that we have programmed ourselves to be mean:) After all, just as this verse says, it is a warped and crooked generation!But if you and I want to be outstanding, we need to stand out. If we pause and send up a quick prayer before our mouth is engaged, we may respond and not react to the warped madness around us. And if we do everything without grumbling and complaining, well that's when we see a better result..."then you will shine among them like stars in the sky as you hold firmly to the word of life."
So, go out there and shine li…

Eat the Fruit!

Blessed are all who fear the Lord,
who walk in obedience to Him.
You will eat the fruit of your labor;
blessings and prosperity will be yours.
Psalm 128:1-2

Fearing the Lord is the beginning of wisdom. It's the place where all of the great things of God start. Being obedient to what He is asking of us is the initiator. But what intrigues me today is the next verse. You will eat the fruit of your labor. Think about that for a moment. What if the food you were to eat today was to come from the work you are doing? What would you be eating? How much would be on your plate? Would you be looking at a feast or a famine? A blessed life is a direct result of a working life. With so many people feeling the crunch of unemployment we may have to be creative in our approach to labor. There are many kind acts that can be done that cost nothing. These random acts of kindness are part of the obedient life and the life that fears the Lord. Being considerate to each other is the way we move towards…

Broken Walls

Proverbs 25:28 Like a city whose walls are broken through is a person who lacks self-control.When you lack self-control you lose your temper. When you lose your temper your mind goes crazy. When your mind goes crazy your mouth runs wild. When your mouth runs wild, feelings get hurt. When feelings get hurt, like a city walls go up. When walls go up like a city, someone loses control and comes to break through and tear them down.Don't let your life be like a city whose walls are broken down by someone out of control. Choose self-control:)Enjoy your Tuesday!

Quiet Lives?

1 THESS 4:10 But we urge you, brethren, that you increase more and more; 11 that you also aspire to lead a quiet life, to mind your own business, and to work with your own hands, as we commanded you, 12 that you may walk properly toward those who are outside, and that you may lack nothing.

Isn't life supposed to be simple? Why does everything have to be so complicated? Chaos, confusion, anxiety, stress and clutter often keeps us from the simple things. Some time ago I got a book called "Simplify Your Life". Well, it was really called 101 Ways to Simplify Your Life. 101 ways! Like I have time for that...I need one way! Ever wonder why we can't get the 12 Step program down to 6 steps or 3? And if God wants me to live a quiet life, how do I possibly do that?
Psalm 46:10 tells us to be still and know that He is God. Stillness calms the spirit and takes us to a place free from confusion and chaos. Trusting God to help in whatever way He chooses knowing that His way is bet…


Our local pizza joint has all types of pizza's-pepperoni, sausage, greek and the ultimate supreme. The supreme has every ingredient in the shop on it all mixed together. As I was reading a proverb the other day I came across the words: "wisdom is supreme". In Proverbs 4 we are instructed to lay ahold of God's Word, keep the commands and get wisdom and understanding. Don't forsake wisdom for wisdom is supreme. I immediately thought about that supreme pizza. What makes it different from all the rest is that it has everything. That's what separates wisdom from knowledge and understanding: wisdom has got every ingredient and it all blends together to make something delicious: a great life and a great pizza.  Why do we need the supreme? Because without God's wisdom we look pretty silly. I was reading some famous people quotes the other day which illustrate my point. Let me share a few... "Smoking kills. If you're killed, you've lost a very import…

Honesty is Such a Lonely Word

That's right, it's Billy Joel today! Remember this classic:
Honesty is such a lonely word.
Everyone is so untrue.
Honesty is hardly ever heard.
And mostly what I need from you.
I heard the song yesterday and besides the fact that it took me back to high school, St. Elmo's Fire and bell-bottom jeans, it also made me think about how true it really is. Ever had a friend tell you they would do something and then not do it? Have you ever made a promise and not kept it? Can we even imagine what life could be like if we said what we meant and meant what we said? Honesty is not possible when we are not obedient to the Lord. In Isaiah 59 it says:
So justice is driven back,
and righteousness stands at a distance

truth has stumbled in the streets,
honesty cannot enter.
IS 59:14
Sin not only alienates us from God, it keeps us from being honest and righteous. You can't tell the truth when you lie to Him! How about deciding today that you are going to be truthful. Speak from the heart. If you d…

Cheer Up!

Worry weighs a person down;
an encouraging word cheers a person up
. Proverbs 12:25
There is nothing quite so overwhelming and burdensome as "worry". Jesus often instructed those around him not to worry. What good does it do? Does it add a day to your life? No! Worry weighs you down and keeps you from soaring like the eagle that you were created to be. You were made to be flying high above the trouble! But don't quit on! Encouragement actually cheers you up! It puts the pep back in your step and turns the corners of your mouth upward. It's so important to find people to surround you that will give you an encouraging word. If no one is around, turn on a praise and worship song! Feed your faith and starve the worry and doubt. Cheer up! If you start today with a frown, your spirit will simply stay down.  Don't let worries weigh you down. Share some encouragement with another person and watch how God brings that cheer back to you:)
Share the cup with your frie…

May Your CUP Run Over!

"May your cup runneth over!" I write this phrase inside the Cup of Joe book I wrote every time I sign one for someone. You find this thought inside the text of Psalm 23..."you anoint my head with oil, my cup runneth over." Our "cup", or our "portion" is the place and position that God has designed us for. Success comes from realizing where to place that cup, where to fill it up and where and when to pour it out. Many of my personal experiences with my "cup" have happened right in the midst of great trial and challenge. I fully understand what it means to have God fill you up, feed you and sustain you in the presence of people and things that want to hurt you. But before you can be a part of an overflowing cup experience, you must put yourself in an emotional and mental place where His power and presence can come upon you; where you and receive the supernatural "oil" that He desires to pour out. Oil is representative of His Spi…

Let the Son Shine!

Spring fever…winter weather fatigue…its interesting how our spirits change with the surroundings forced upon us by Mother Nature. It helps me to understand that my environment and the people that I keep close to me can shape and form my future. During a worship service at church or a CONNECT group in a family home, I find myself inspired, encouraged and lifted up in many ways.
How about you? What do you do to lift up your spirits? Who do you turn to? Don’t let Monday steal your Sunday. This could be a break-through, blue sky week for you! Keep yourself surrounded with godly and stable people. Let the Son (of God) shine upon your life and soon that winter weather fatigue will leave:)

The 11th Hour

Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God.
I’m not sure what is going on in your life right now but I am engulfed in one of those 11th hour seasons. Maybe I should say 11:59 seasons! Those times when unless God does something miraculous and over the top, dramatic changes are going to occur. Sometimes it makes me laugh and other times it makes me cry. It’s just so interesting to me that in the life of many people I know, we seem to see our best “spiritual awakening” in the 11th hour. And every time I always question why God could not have done it soonerJ I guess its because my faith needs to keep being stretched. Trials and challenges are making me a better preacher and teacher…a better dad and friend. Didn’t James say, “count it all joy”?
I am praying for some miracles this weekend. My family needs some, my church needs some and Cup of Joe needs some too! I am praying for you and your jobs to be bless…

Shape Your Worries

Don’t fret or worry. Instead of worrying, pray. Let petitions and praises shape your worries into prayers, letting God know your concerns. Phil 4:4 There's a great deal of "life" happening all around us. So much that its very easy to worry about everything. How are we going to make ends meet? Will my child be safe at school? Is my marriage strong enough to endure temptation? Will I end up in heaven living the way that I am?  All of these questions can lead to extended seasons of worry. Worry often develops into anxiety which breeds stress and can even make you physically sick. Paul taught us in Philippians to not be anxious about anything. Don't fret it and don't sweat it. Don't hurry through it and don't worry through it. How do we do that?  We let our praises shape those worries into prayers to God! Imagine being able to take every unmanageable situation and place it in a perfect size box that could be managed, closed and put  away. Even throw it away if n…

Staying Home

2 Samuel 11:1 In the spring, at the time when kings go off to war, David sent Joab out with the king’s men and the whole Israelite army. They destroyed the Ammonites and besieged Rabbah. But David remained in Jerusalem.David stayed home. Kings were supposed to go off and lead their troops in battle during the spring. But David stayed home. What happened next was devastating.Today I thought about all of those awful things that I've experienced in my life when I was in the wrong place at the wrong time. Being out of balance, out of position and out of line always leads to trouble. It was during this idle season that David found himself gazing at the neighbors wife and well, the downward spiral was huge. David wrecked himself, the family he betrayed and brought horrific consequences to his own family. There are always consequences for bad behavior.
Someone once said idle hands are the devils workshop. Isolating yourself in a time when you should be connecting with others can lead to…

Comparison Trap

2 Corinthians 10:12 We do not dare to classify or compare ourselves with some who commend themselves. When they measure themselves by themselves and compare themselves with themselves, they are not wise.One of the hardest things to do when you are unhappy, bored or disouraged is to not compare your life with someone else's. Some have called it a comparison trap. Oftentimes when we are idle or restless in our own lives, we seem to notice what is going on and into the lives of others. When this happens we lose our own identity. It's not wise to compare yourself to another person or your life to their life.
Don't fall into the trap of comparing yourself to others. You are exactly the way you are supposed to be. Don't let the weakness in you affect the greatness in you. You have been given all that you need to be the success that God desires for you. Settle down and settle in to that best version of you that we all want to see. You are amazing!

It's OK

Well the clocks have changed, and hopefully we will to as we start springing forward and becoming doers of the Word and not just hearers only. As you and I go through the many transitions of weather and activity, we need to remember a few things about the difficult things. Life is not easy and when we face challenges that overwhelm us, we need to learn how to turn the test into a testimony. When you emotions seems to be unbalanced and situations keep changing, here are a few things that you can do to center yourself again. 1- allow yourself to FEEL: most of our lives we are encouraged to hide or ignore what we are really feeling. It's OK to feel mad, to feel confused, to feel sad. When you embrace these feelings you put yourself in a position to move through them.  2- allow yourself time to HEAL: once you realize what you are feeling and own it, take a little time to heal yourself rather than jumping back in to life. You need to know why you are feeling what you are feeling and the…

Spring Forward

Yesterday we decided it was time to get the trash to the curb. By getting out the garbage we can spring forward into a new season of blessing and favor from the Lord. Think of it like this...
You can remain tired, depressed and lonely
You can say to yourself this is as good as it gets
You can have a little pity party for one
You can say that no one cares about you
You can say I'm not talented enough, I don’t have enough time
I'm not the right “fit”
You can spring forward
You can lift up your eyes and walk with your chin up
You can launch out in a new direction
You can trust in the God who CREATED YOU the way you are
You can say “nothing is impossible with God”
You can dust off that old spirit and put on a garment of praise!
Hezekiah did not let what had been, be again! He broke the curse and made the Lord happy. You can too! Are you ready...get set...spring forward!
Don't forget to set your clocks ahead one hour this weekend!

Carry Out the Trash

For many people spring is the time of year we move outdoors and become active once more. In addition to an increase in "physical" activity, many people go through an annual ritual of "spring cleaning". It's time to move the winter clothes to the back of the closet and find the shorts again. It's time to pray and hope that the spring shorts will still fasten around our winterized waists! In the Bible there was a boy named Hezekiah who became king at age 25.(2 Chronicles 29) He was determined to make a positive difference in the world and use his authority and power for good. His dad had closed the church, broken the sacred objects of the church and done many things which angered the Lord. The good news is that sin does not have to be hereditary! Hezekiah made a decision to repair the house of God and restore order. And the Lord was fact he was called one of the 3 most perfect Kings of Judah. His first order of business: get the trash out of the …

Unwrap It!

Romans 12:6 We have different gifts, according to the grace given to each of us. If your gift is prophesying, then prophesy in accordance with your faith;7 if it is serving, then serve; if it is teaching, then teach;8 if it is to encourage, then give encouragement; if it is giving, then give generously; if it is to lead, do it diligently; if it is to show mercy, do it cheerfully.I am in my 12th year as the pastor of The Landing. Every day I am amazed at the variety of talents that God assembles and the way that they are called to work together. Often it is a struggle to get us all doing what we should be doing. But we keep moving forward and every year it just gets better and better.As I read this scripture I thought about how I feel when I give someone a gift and I never see them use it. Maybe you have had that happen to you as well. It can be quite disappointing. Which leads me to a more humbling thought: how does God feel when I don't use the gifts that He has planted in me? I …

Are You a Quitter?

Luke 18:1 Then Jesus told his disciples a parable to show them that they should always pray and not give up. Jesus knew that we would be deficient when it came to persistence in prayer. Often we pray or talk to the Lord around our situations urgency rather than developing a lifestyle of communication that brings life changing results. In this story Jesus told them of a woman that was seeking justice against her adversary from the judge. But he kept denying her request. Then something changed. It was the judge! He finally gave in and honored her request for justice. Now the lesson is not keep bugging Jesus until he changes his mind! Jesus already knows what you need and the best way to get it to you. But he loves consistency. He loves someone who is focused, driven with determination and willing to press through. He loves one who does not give up. This could be the day your prayer is answered! You might get that check in the mail that helps pay those bills you have been holding. Your sp…

My Hopes are High

Ephesians 1:11 It’s in Christ that we find out who we are and what we are living for. Long before we first heard of Christ and got our hopes up, he had his eye on us, had designs on us for glorious living, part of the overall purpose he is working out in everything and everyone.What a great way to begin the week...knowing that God has his eye on me and a design for my life! He knows the best way to get all of those things he placed in me out and into the world to glorify himself. So my role is simple: let him do what he desires with what he made...ME!He made you too! I've got a feeling that this first week of March is going to be amazing for all of us!
Share a cup today!