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Showing posts from October, 2017

Love Thyself

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The Older You Get...

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#SaturdaySmile

Double Dipping

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"Let Him have all your worries and cares, for He is always thinking about you and watching everything that concerns you." 1 Peter 5:7 TLB
Look around you today at the faces of people. What you may see are frowns and black circles under the eyes. Unhappy stares and faces showing the signs of an incredible amount of wear and tear. Anxiety and stress are taking a toll on many people today. We worry about whether our children will be safe. We worry about whether we are going to lose our job or even our house. And we worry about whether or not people are going to like us and what we do. Each of these things has been covered by the Lord already! I remember one day I was walking through the neighborhood and heard an old familiar sound...the song of the little white ice cream truck. As it drove passed me I felt happy, peaceful and excited as I watched the little kids run to the next block to meet him. They were about to forget all of their troubles with a simple double dip of sweet…

A Glorious Life

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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. EPH 1:11
Who am I and what am I here for? You have probably asked one or both of those questions yourself. I have too. I believed that there had to be something else, something bigger than me that made my life count and the rest of my life worth living for. And I found the answer...it's in Christ. My identity comes from the One to whom I pledge my devotion and give my heart. He shows me each and every day who I am "in Him" and why He has chosen me to live this life "in Him" and for his purposes. He had his eye on me all the time and there was always a grand design for me to live a glorious life! That's incredible! And don't miss how this ends: his overall purpose is being worked out in everyth…

Believe...See...Become

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Believe it…See it…Become itThis simple verse holds in it a powerful truth when it comes to using faith in our lives. Most people would tell you that they must “see it to believe it.” Faith works exactly opposite. Faith instructs us to “believe it to see it.” Jesus was making the point clear when he said, “believe in the light while you have the light, so that you may become children of light.” He was talking about himself and teaching the disciples and us how to embrace the urgency: while I am here, believe in me with all of your heart and become all that I've designed you to be. Believe it to see it. It begins with you starting to visualize it before it will materialize in your life. I remember years ago before I founded The Landing Community Church, walking around my neighborhood and speaking to myself. I knew that the Lord wanted me to shepherd people. I felt His call to pastor people. I wasn't a pastor. I began to say to myself every day that I was a pastor, I will lead peo…

Watch Your Thoughts

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Two things: thoughts and words. It was Emerson that once showed us the progressive connection of not only thoughts and words, but habits and character too.
Watch your thoughts for they become words,
watch your words for they become actions,
watch your actions, for they become habits,
watch your habits for they become your character,
watch your character for it becomes your destiny.
—Ralph Waldo Emerson
Watch your thoughts. What you think about, becomes so much more as it begins to shape and consume your life. Perhaps that is why Philippians 4:8 encouraged us in this way: “whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is excellent or praiseworthy—think about such things.”
Now you can see why that scripture is so powerful. Thinking about those things helps to bring out those things in every area of your life. Don't surrender your mind to anything that hinders you. Watchyourthoughts. They become everything.

Grace is a Gift

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I was reading some words from Galatians this week where it talks about a plan...a plan that God has for everyone. It says in Galatians 1:4 that the purpose and plan of God was that we would all come to the realization that we need saving. We need a Savior!
Paul was surprised and astonished that people could walk away from faith so easily and start to chase other belief systems. He couldn't understand how anyone could desert Christ and pursue something else. He realized that we needed saving.
Once you have had a taste of grace-once you have digested it and learned to live off of its power, you can never abandon the God that gives grace. Grace is "unmerited favor". Unfortunately in our culture the unmerited favor of God often gives way to the instant gratification of self. You can't earn grace; it is a gift. A gift from God. And because of that gift you have the reassurance that everything that happens in your life will somehow be utilized in making you stronger, more…

Honesty is Such a Lonely Word

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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 disobedient 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 to others when you lie to Him! Let's decide today that we are going to be truthful. Speak from …

A Bowlful of Water

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Judges 6:36 Gideon said to God, "If you will save Israel by my hand as you have promised—37 look, I will place a wool fleece on the threshing floor. If there is dew only on the fleece and all the ground is dry, then I will know that you will save Israel by my hand, as you said."38 And that is what happened. Gideon rose early the next day; he squeezed the fleece and wrung out the dew—a bowlful of water. Isn't this like most of us, "bargaining" with the Lord? God if you will do this for me, I'll serve you forever! God, I'll do some things for my church if you will (put your request here). For Gideon, it was a bowlful of water that changed everything; well, just for a minute. He then went on to ask God prove himself again and reverse the process: to make the wool dry and the ground wet! Can't you just see the smile on the face of God? This could have been the first use of the term..."really"? Walking in faith requires us to simply trust and ob…

Snap, Crackle, Pop

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One winter some time ago, I built a fire in my fireplace. It was a cold and gloomy day outside and I was writing thoughts, journaling and putting my ideas on paper so that I wouldn't forget them. As the wood began to burn and it got hotter, it started to snap, crackle and pop. It was going all rice crispies on me! The hotter the fire got, the more noise it made. Then I started to think about anger. The more angry that a person gets the more you may start to hear the snap and crackle and feel the pop. It may be something that someone says or an action done in haste. Whatever it is, the heat is rising and the possibility for popping is absolutely certain. As I was sitting there with my laptop and Chai Tea by the fire, I was caught up by other thoughts and articles I was writing. Forty minutes later I noticed that the fire had burned down. It was not as hot as it used to be and the popping... well it was gone.  Apply that to this spirit of anger and you can surmise that if we could …

God of ALL Comfort

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Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of compassion and the God of all comfort, who comforts us in all our troubles, so that we can comfort those in any trouble with the comfort we ourselves receive from God.  Today's cup of joe is fresh, bold and full of flavor:) You and I have a God that loves to bring us comfort. He is the God of ALL comfort! There is a purpose for the comfort He provides. He comforts us so that we can pass it on and comfort someone else that needs it. You receive comfort so that you can give comfort. I have found in my own experience that when I am not feeling that great, I can find comfort simply by bringing comfort to someone else. In other words, when I center my thoughts on helping others, God helps me in all my troubles. Try giving the Father of compassion some praise today. Let the God of ALL comfort, comfort YOU!

Life is Messy

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For our present troubles are small and won’t last very long. Yet they produce for us a glory that vastly outweighs them and will last forever! 2 Corinthians 4:17
Not everything is going to go your way. Sometimes life can get messy and there can be challenges. BUT the Good News is that the trouble won't last very long and it WILL go away. Better yet, you and I will become stronger because of it. The difficulties and pains will produce incredible blessings if we simply trust the Lord and hold on to His Word. Imagine those trials producing God's glory in us! I like to people watch and this year I've seen some folks that are struggling and some that are joyful. When I see those that have lost their smile or seem to be in a dark place, I think about the good that the Lord is producing for them that may lie just around the corner. I pray that they will be able to persevere until that breakthrough comes. And I also realize how small many of my present troubles are in the grand sche…

The Son Also Rises

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The way of the righteous is like the first gleam of dawn,which shines ever brighter until the full light of day. Proverbs 4:18         
There is nothing like those first few moments in the morning as the sun begins to rise on the horizon and the earth comes to life for another day. I like to spend these types of moments with my cup of joe, sitting in the quiet dawn and thanking the Lord for another day of opportunities to bless and be blessed. It’s in this first gleam of dawn that I feel my potential come alive and my soul is refreshed for the day. The righteous life should experience this peace and brightness every day. Living a righteous life requires this gentle reset every day. So as you begin your day, know that every time the sun rises, the Son also rises in you. And you will just keep shining brighter as the day goes on!
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Yep, its October! Unbelievable!! There are so many things I have on my list to complete this year and we are now in the final quarter of the 2017 season. I realized this past weekend that if I do not make some changes, I may fall short of what was hoped for in this year. To put it simply, without change, there will be no change. It seems like everyone struggles with this. We like things the way they are...living in the center of the "comfort" zone. We love hanging inside the space we know with the people we trust and doing the things that come easiest. But as someone once told me, some of the most amazing things happen outside of our comfort zones. So in this final quarter of the year, I want to make some changes because I need things to change. I want to bust through the ceiling and eliminate the comfort zone: personally, physically and spiritually. What needs to change in your life right now for you to move closer to the things that you have set before you to finish this …
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Bring on the cool temps, the colorful leaves and my favorite hoodie!
May your cup (of joe) always be filled to overflowing:)