Archives for February2011

What is in God’s Heart for You?

Whose idea is it anyway?

Where there is no vision, the people perish”. Proverbs 29:18 KJV

In Phil Vischer’s book, Me, Myself and Bob, A True Story About God, Dreams, and Talking Vegetables, Phil describes the rise and fall of Veggietales and Big Idea, and how the vision that he had initially for his company had became something completely out of control. Throughout Phil’s life he learned the process of success and failure and what having a “vision” really means.

I would like to share with you an excerpt from his book, in this passage he is referring to a book he was reading at the lowest point in his career, by Henry Blackaby called Experiencing God….

“I picked it up and opened it to week one, day one. A few paragraphs down I read these words: “If you start something and it does not seem to go well, consider carefully that God, on purpose, may not be authenticating what you told the people because it did not come from Him, but from your own head. You may have wanted to do something outstanding for God and forgot that God does not want that. He wants you to be available to Him, and more important obedient to Him…”

Day five: “It is not what is in your heart, nor what you want to accomplish for God, nor what you want to see in your church, or even what you want to see in your group of churches. The key is not what you want to see (your vision), but what is in God’s heart and what is in His mind.”

…“We have no business telling God what we want to accomplish for him or dreaming up what we want to do for Him.” And “The people of God are not to be a people of vision; they are to be a people of revelation.”

What? That’s blasphemy! Or at the very least, highly un-American! Of course we’re supposed to be people of vision! There’s that verse-Proverbs 29:18-“For lack of vision, the people perish.” HA!

I was big on that verse. I’d even been introduced with that verse. “’Where there is no revelation, people cast off restraint!’ Here’s Phil Vischer!’” Yet Yoda Henry was ready to skewer that one with his little green light saber, quickly pointing out that when we quote Proverbs 29:28, we always quote the King James Version. Check out a modern translation like the New International Version, he advised, and you’ll find the verse reads, “Where there is no revelation, the people cast off restraint.””- Pages 235-238 Me, Myself, and Bob

Thank You Jesus!! I can see!!!

VISION is NOT REVELATION

Phil goes on to describe how somewhere along the line in his career, he had stopped listening to God and had become hard hearted in the achievement of his dreams. He had interpreted Proverbs 29 as: “What I WANT is more important than anything and enough that is enough for GOD to do it.” And in Habakkuk, “If I WRITE it down, I am SURE to get it.”

Books like The Secret and Think and Grow Rich will teach you that same concept. “Whatever YOU want… write it down and you WILL get it.” This leaves many people falling short and frustrated, hitting their head against the wall. The message from these books ends up coming across that if you ‘dream, imagine, and visualize’ becoming a concert pianist and want it bad enough you can do it, because after all what YOU want and on YOUR power you can do anything. Have you ever gotten frustrated screwing a round peg into a square whole?

Read Proverbs 29 in a modern version,

“Where there is no revelation, the people cast off restraint” NIV

AHA! WHAT?! ‘Revelation?’ Yes! You see God has a purpose for your life, and he is waiting to reveal it to you! All you need to do is ask Him for it. We are not called to conjure, imagine, and force our reality. We are called to step into the life that God has for us. As a matter of fact the complete verse in Habakkuk reads this way,

Then the LORD replied:

“Write down the revelation and make it plain on tablets so that a herald may run with it. For the revelation awaits an appointed time; it speaks of the end and will not prove false. Though it linger, wait for it; it will certainly come and will not delay.” NIV

Our lives are about the revelation that God shows us. In the days of old, before PowerPoint’s, goal setting, self-help books, and false imagery, ‘vision’ meant to dream. We as Christians need to recognize that being in God’s will, is not a challenge. His yoke is easy, and His burden is light!

My Prayer Today,

“Lord, let my brothers and sisters see today perhaps for the first time, what you would have them to do with their lives. Give them the revelation of the plan that you have had purposed for them since the beginning of time. Give them the bravery of heart and courage to let go of that which they may have been forced upon to do. Allow them to boldly go forward in the attempt of fulfilling their destiny, regardless of how ‘ridiculous’ it may seem. Your revelations are pure, and mighty and on purpose. We desire to be on purpose for You and want whatever You want for our lives. We die to our own, and submit to You. Your revelation for us is all we need, God alone. In Your Son Jesus’ name, AMEN. ”

**Phil has gone on to create a new company called Jelly Telly. You can look him up on the web at www.jellytelly.com. He expresses how upon completely surrendering to the Lord, the very first book he wrote afterward was read to his wife and she broke down in tears. He now describes his life as “Skating on ice, not pushing boulders up mountains.”

For the revelation awaits an appointed time; it speaks of the end and will not prove false. Though it linger, wait for it; it will certainly come and will not delay. Habakkuk 2:3


What would you do if you could do ANYTHING with your life and money was NO object? Ever since Jessica was a little girl, she dreamed of being a mommy, a wife, a teacher, and a writer. In 1995 her wedded dream came when Jesus Himself introduced her to her now husband Jeff. Together Jeff and Jessica have 5 children and Jessica writes and blogs daily in the hope that someone will be blessed by the Lord, in the same direct and relevant way that she has been. Jessica teaches and believes that an intense and personal relationship with Jesus IS all that you need, and that the Bible is the key to unlocking that intensity for Christ that you have always dreamed of having.

You can keep in touch with Jessica and Wholehearted Minisrties at wholeheartedministries.com, on twitter, via facebook, through email subscription to articles, and directly through email at jessica@wholeheartedministries.com. Thank you for your support!

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Welcome to 2011,  A Year of “Creative Newness!”

The WAR From Boy to Man: Where Have All the Cowboys Gone?

I suppose that you could call me a Christian Observational Journalist. Always looking for my next topic and next story, I was observing the other day men and the difficult battle that they endure- silly one moment, serious the next. As if stuck in a split personality most men have a 60/40 boy to man ratio and this morning I woke up thinking, what is this- where does this come from?

A Farmer Boys List of Responsibilities (during the school year)

  • Rise while it is still dark
  • Milk cows
  • Collect eggs
  • Stack hay for the day and feed the animals
  • Eat breakfast
  • Walk/bus to school
  • Come home
  • Fix and maintain broken fences/equipment
  • Milk cows
  • Eat dinner
  • Bed

Internet Farmers List of Responsibilities by Chris Brogan

  • Get your blog post up. Make it helpful, worthy of comments, and unique.
  • Comment on other people’s blog posts.
  • Share other people’s blog posts.
  • Comment back to people who’ve commented on your blog.
  • Read something not related to your market.
  • Connect with five people not in your vertical or your geography.
  • Reconnect with people who matter. Drop an email or call. Don’t ask for anything.
  • Look at the map of where you think things are going for your business. Anything change?
  • Read the “weather” from the blogs you follow. Anything there?
  • Think about what seeds you might plant for future projects.
  • Share at the farmer’s market your best yields.

Is there any wonder why our men are dying prematurely?

The Modern Man

How does the “Modern Man” learn these tools of the trade… responsibility, commitment, hard work, stick-to-it-iv-ness? The “modern” woman’s roles have changed very little.  From small girls, girls are raised to be mommies and in relationships. Their toys are dolls, their playtime is maternal and they grow up watching Princesses marry Princes. Boys read books about planes, trains, automobiles, animals, dinosaurs. It is almost as if it is a general free-for-all in the roles for men that they can heck, be/think WHATEVER they want. Hitler was famous for saying, “What luck for rulers, that men do not think.”

My husband Jeff and I were in conversation the other day with a business owner from Vietnam. In his 50’s, he had said that his father had 10 children. They were raised very poor and so in turn his father told his 10 kids, “I need three lawyers, three doctors, three engineers and an accountant.” Guess what? That is what that father got! The man we were talking to had become an engineer, and he hated it. Of course, up until he was 50 years old he worked as an engineer- sold his company and was rich enough now to start a business doing something he finally loved.

Where Have All the Cowboys Gone?

Paula Cole wrote a song in the 90’s singing a pleading ballad of “Where is my John Wayne? Where is my prairie son? Where is my happy ending? Where have all the cowboys gone? Where have all the cowboy’s gone?” It is in my observation, that the cowboys are all still here- they are just at war, at war with themselves.

Have you ever really looked in the eyes of a man that grew up with little or no responsibilities? Looking into their eyes, you can see this desperate need for approval. Constantly hunting, pecking and demanding for a sense of self esteem and acknowledgement that would have occurred naturally as a foundation built during the exercise of responsibilities . We can not blame our men for this, but we can better understand it.

University of Chicago economist Steven Levitt and New York Times journalist Stephen J. Dubner in 2005 came out with a most controversial book called Freakonomics. While I have never read the book, I have seen some interviews with the men and their theories. (Often considered provencal at best) They have determined to study the after effects of certain changes in economic climate and policies. In their second book Superfreakonomics Levitt and Dubner shed some light on the role that the feminism of the 60/70’s played for the dissipation of the modern American man:

Dubner and Levitt argue first, that the feminist movement has been bad for schoolchildren, as schools have been hurt by the “brain drain” of talented women leaving teaching for more lucrative careers. And they then argue that in some ways this has been very good for high-end prostitutes.

“Prostitution is one of the few — if not the only — sector of the labor force that’s dominated by women, and always has been. And that arises from the very simple fact that, you know, there are a lot of men who want to have a lot of sex more than they are able to get for free,” said Dubner.

Before World War II, if a young man wanted sex, he had two basic options: marriage or a brothel. So in the 1930s, one in five American men lost his virginity to a prostitute.

A profitable sector for hookers — until the sexual liberation movement in the 1960s changed the business of intimacy, and a generation of “free love” altered the marketplace forever. The modesty traditionally displayed by women in search of Mr. Right evolved to a bold pursuit of Mr. Right Now. And an era of casual sex — prostitution’s direct rival — was conceived.

“The reason the relative price has fallen so much is because there is competition from women who will have sex for free,” said Dubner. You can read this complete article @ abcnews

Where is The Bible in All of This?

That is a great question. In 1962 prayer and Bible readings (in the form of the Lord’s prayer) was officially taken out of the public school system: The U. S. Supreme Court issued two bans. One in 1962 and the second in 1963. Both bans were the result of lawsuits against the teaching of religion and religious practices in public schools. Basically stating that organized prayer in schools was a violation of the separation of church and state. It was decided that publicly funded schools were an extension of the state, and that organized prayer or bible readings were a form of proselytizing. The bans not only banned mandatory prayer in schools but also banned the daily reading of bible passages.

And yet, in Scripture we read:

Train up a child in the way he should go: and when he is old, he will not depart from it. Proverbs 22:6

There is a battle upon men, the kind of battle that we (as women raised with dolls, mini-kitchens, and Barbies) will never completely be able to understand. If there is no “way” for a child to be trained to go… what happens to that child?

Are We Underestimating the Abilities of our Boys?

King David not only slew Goliath when he was a young man (in his early twenties-if not younger), before he killed Goliath he had killed the bear, the lion and shepherded his fathers sheep as the youngest of his fathers eight sons.

Moses was 40 years old when he killed the Egyptian and left Egypt. He had to leave his palace home in order to live in the wilderness before he could hear the Word of the Lord and return to set his people free. For 40 years Moses had been taught and programmed by the government growing up as a boy in Pharaoh’s house in one way, and by his mother (while nursemaid) to the truth. He saw the laborious tasks of his people and felt compassion. I believe that he needed to leave the comforts of the palace in order to become a truly effective leader.

Jesus, son of Joseph, Son of God. Jesus we find at 13 years old teaching in the synagogue. When Mary lost Him at the temple, and returned to Him in anxiety- He merely said to her, “Don’t you know I am about my Father’s business?” Jesus’ ministry was raised and He was crucified all in his early thirties. He is known not only as The King of King’s and Lord of Lord’s but a MAN’S MAN.

King Josiah. “Josiah was eight years old when he became king, and he reigned in Jerusalem thirty-one years. He did what was right in the eyes of the LORD and walked in the ways of his father David, not turning aside to the right or to the left.In the eighth year of his reign (16 years old), while he was still young, he began to seek the God of his father David. In his twelfth year he began to purge Judah and Jerusalem of high places, Asherah poles, carved idols and cast images. Under his direction the altars of the Baals were torn down; he cut to pieces the incense altars that were above them, and smashed the Asherah poles, the idols and the images. These he broke to pieces and scattered over the graves of those who had sacrificed to them. He burned the bones of the priests on their altars, and so he purged Judah and Jerusalem. In the towns of Manasseh, Ephraim and Simeon, as far as Naphtali, and in the ruins around them he tore down the altars and the Asherah poles and crushed the idols to powder and cut to pieces all the incense altars throughout Israel. Then he went back to Jerusalem.” 2 Chronicles 34

In Conclusion

Men were created first. Women were created to be help meets and mothers. Women are beautiful and wonderfully nurturing where men are dominant and empowered by the heart of the Lord that saw first to create them. Are we as a society underestimating men/boys? YES. If you have a boy, raise that boy to learn about the heart of a man, the heart of Christ. Raise them in confidence of their resolve, in the ability to execute deliberate plans, in prayer and submission to their Heavenly Father, and of course in strength, might and courage. Boys become men, and if it is your desire to see your son be a leader in the 21/22nd Centuries- they will need to know by you that you support them in their manhood 110%.


What would you do if you could do ANYTHING with your life and money was NO object? Ever since Jessica was a little girl, she dreamed of being a mommy, a wife, a teacher, and a writer. In 1995 her wedded dream came when Jesus Himself introduced her to her now husband Jeff. Together Jeff and Jessica have 5 children and Jessica writes and blogs daily in the hope that someone will be blessed by the Lord, in the same direct and relevant way that she has been. Jessica teaches and believes that an intense and personal relationship with Jesus IS all that you need, and that the Bible is the key to unlocking that intensity for Christ that you have always dreamed of having.

You can keep in touch with Jessica and Wholehearted Minisrties at wholeheartedministries.com, on twitter, via facebook, through email subscription to articles, and directly through email at jessica@wholeheartedministries.com. Thank you for your support!

RETURN TO FACEBOOKTWITTERWHM HERE

Welcome to 2011,  A Year of “Creative Newness!”

TODAY IS THE DAY: No Looking BACK!

Jesus said, “No procrastination. No backward looks. You can’t put God’s kingdom off till tomorrow. Seize the day.” Luke 9:57-62 MSG

Our Father: The Excuse Remover!

I am beginning to think that people are so in love with themselves and their problems, that they don’t pray because they are afraid that God will take away all of their excuses! Why else would one not read the Bible on a regular basis? After all, if you say “I am broke”, the Bible says you are rich. (Rev 2:9) If you say, “I am sick”, the Bible says through Christ you are healed. (1 Peter 2:24)

  • Divorced? You are married to Christ. (2 Cor 11:2)*
  • Parentless? God (our Father) is Father to the fatherless. (Psalm 68:5)
  • Single? You have been made a joint heir. (Romans 8:17)
  • Disabled? You can have hope in Christ and His healing power. (Matt 11:5)
  • Powerless? You can lay hands on the sick, and they will recover. (Mark 16:18)
  • Cursed? You have been made free from the curse. (Gal 3:13)
  • Stupidity? You have been given the mind of Christ. (1 Cor. 2:16)
  • Confused? You have been given the secrets of the Kingdom. (Matt 13:11)
  • Unsure? Through the Holy Spirit, you know all things! (1 John 2:20)
  • Unlovable? Christ died for the sinner, to show him love. (Romans 5:8)
  • Confused of gender, race or religion? There is NO gender, race or religion in Christ- we are all one! (Gal 3:28)

A person who has many excuses, spends no time in the Word. If you are going to a church in which the leadership has many excuses for why things aren’t working… they aren’t spending time in the Word! I can tell a true believer right away- a true believer does not except NOR promote excuses, because they have spent so much time in the Word that they know that there are NO excuses for those who love God and are called according to His purpose, because all things work together for GOOD for those that love Him.


Draw a Line in the Sand

So today is THE day to draw a line in the sand and QUIT doing whatever it is that is bringing you down.

  • Unemployed? GET A JOB. (Mow a lawn, volunteer for the fire department, work for a company for free until they hire you, wash a car)
  • Discouraged? CHOOSE HAPPY. (Laugh out loud, confront your situation head-on, pray for encouragement and do something unusual- like take yourself out on a date)
  • Broke? BECOME RICH. (Recognize that even your brokest day is a day of richness compared to those who do not know Jesus)
  • Sick? IT IS WELL. (Christ has come to heal you, quit doing destructive habits that create illness in your life, i.e. negative thinking, smoking, swearing, reading/watching harmful influences, recognize that even the terminally ill who die with hope are better off than the healthy hopeless!)

Jesus replied, “No one who puts his hand to the plow and looks back is fit for service in the kingdom of God.” Luke 9:62

Jesus was a NO NONSENSE fellow. In Luke 9:57-62, Jesus shows us all that as long as we are carrying yesterday’s baggage around with us everywhere we go… WE AREN’T FIT FOR THE KINGDOM! All of yesterday’s stinkin’ thinkin’, all of yesterday’s “Whoa is me”, all of yesterday’s “I want and I needs”, are tripping up our futures! Imagine with me the Lord handing you keys to a new and beautiful racing red Ferrari, excited to get going- you say, “Oh JESUS! THANK YOU LORD! But just a second… let me go back to the pinto and get my suitcase, my cup holders, my trash from the back seat, my mix tapes… you think there is room for my bottle cap collection?” WHAT?! NO WAY! TAKE THE KEYS AND D R I V E !!!

Jesus, in His Word HAS GIVEN YOU THE KEYS! You do not need to live a life of excuses ANYMORE! Get in that Word, read what it says… and march on into VICTORY!


What would you do if you could do ANYTHING with your life and money was NO object? Ever since Jessica was a little girl, she dreamed of being a mommy, a wife, a teacher, and a writer. In 1995 her wedded dream came when Jesus Himself introduced her to her now husband Jeff. Together Jeff and Jessica have 5 children and Jessica writes and blogs daily in the hope that someone will be blessed by the Lord, in the same direct and relevant way that she has been. Jessica teaches and believes that an intense and personal relationship with Jesus IS all that you need, and that the Bible is the key to unlocking that intensity for Christ that you have always dreamed of having.

You can keep in touch with Jessica and Wholehearted Minisrties at wholeheartedministries.com, on twitter, via facebook, through email subscription to articles, and directly through email at jessica@wholeheartedministries.com. Thank you for your support!

RETURN TO FACEBOOKTWITTERWHM HERE

Welcome to 2011,  A Year of “Creative Newness!”

NO MORE EXCUES! EXCUSES ARE USELESS!

* Here are these scriptures in the extended version for your easy and convenient reading:

The BIBLICAL response to poverty:

“Give in to God, come to terms with him and everything will turn out just fine. Let him tell you what to do; take his words to heart. Come back to God Almighty and he’ll rebuild your life. Clean house of everything evil. Relax your grip on your money and abandon your gold-plated luxury. God Almighty will be your treasure, more wealth than you can imagine.” Job 22:21-25

“I can see your pain and poverty—constant pain, dire poverty—but I also see your wealth. And I hear the lie in the claims of those who pretend to be good Jews, who in fact belong to Satan’s crowd.” Rev 2:9

The BIBLICAL response to sickness:

He used his servant body to carry our sins to the Cross so we could be rid of sin, free to live the right way. His wounds became your healing. You were lost sheep with no idea who you were or where you were going. Now you’re named and kept for good by the Shepherd of your souls.” 1 Peter 2:24

The BIBLICAL response to living divorced:

“Will you put up with a little foolish aside from me? Please, just for a moment. The thing that has me so upset is that I care about you so much—this is the passion of God burning inside me! I promised your hand in marriage to Christ, presented you as a pure virgin to her husband. And now I’m afraid that exactly as the Snake seduced Eve with his smooth patter, you are being lured away from the simple purity of your love for Christ.” 2 Cor 11:1-3

The BIBLICAL response to living parentless:

“Father of orphans, champion of widows, is God in his holy house. God makes homes for the homeless, leads prisoners to freedom, but leaves rebels to rot in hell.” Psalm 68:5

The BIBLICAL response to living single:

“This resurrection life you received from God is not a timid, grave-tending life. It’s adventurously expectant, greeting God with a childlike “What’s next, Papa?” God’s Spirit touches our spirits and confirms who we really are. We know who he is, and we know who we are: Father and children. And we know we are going to get what’s coming to us—an unbelievable inheritance! We go through exactly what Christ goes through. If we go through the hard times with him, then we’re certainly going to go through the good times with him!” Romans 8:17

The BIBLICAL response to living disabled:

“Jesus told them, “Go back and tell John what’s going on: The blind see, The lame walk, Lepers are cleansed, The deaf hear, The dead are raised, The wretched of the earth learn that God is on their side.”Is this what you were expecting? Then count yourselves most blessed!” Matt 11:5

The BIBLICAL response to seeming powerless:

“These are some of the signs that will accompany believers: They will throw out demons in my name, they will speak in new tongues, they will take snakes in their hands, they will drink poison and not be hurt, they will lay hands on the sick and make them well.” Mark 16:18

The BIBLICAL response to living cursed:

Christ redeemed us from that self-defeating, cursed life by absorbing it completely into himself. Do you remember the Scripture that says, “Cursed is everyone who hangs on a tree”? That is what happened when Jesus was nailed to the cross: He became a curse, and at the same time dissolved the curse. And now, because of that, the air is cleared and we can see that Abraham’s blessing is present and available for non-Jews, too. We are all able to receive God’s life, his Spirit, in and with us by believing—just the way Abraham received it.” Gal 3:13

The BIBLICAL response to lack of knowledge:

“The unspiritual self, just as it is by nature, can’t receive the gifts of God’s Spirit. There’s no capacity for them. They seem like so much silliness. Spirit can be known only by spirit—God’s Spirit and our spirits in open communion. Spiritually alive, we have access to everything God’s Spirit is doing, and can’t be judged by unspiritual critics. Isaiah’s question, “Is there anyone around who knows God’s Spirit, anyone who knows what he is doing?” has been answered: Christ knows, and we have Christ’s Spirit.” 1 Cor 2:16

The BIBLICAL response to confusion:

“He replied, “You’ve been given insight into God’s kingdom. You know how it works. Not everybody has this gift, this insight; it hasn’t been given to them. Whenever someone has a ready heart for this, the insights and understandings flow freely. But if there is no readiness, any trace of receptivity soon disappears. That’s why I tell stories: to create readiness, to nudge the people toward receptive insight. In their present state they can stare till doomsday and not see it, listen till they’re blue in the face and not get it.” Matt 13:11

The BIBLICAL response to being uncertain:

“But you belong. The Holy One anointed you, and you all know it. I haven’t been writing this to tell you something you don’t know, but to confirm the truth you do know, and to remind you that the truth doesn’t breed lies.” 1 John 2:20

The BIBLICAL response to feeling unlovable:

“Christ arrives right on time to make this happen. He didn’t, and doesn’t, wait for us to get ready. He presented himself for this sacrificial death when we were far too weak and rebellious to do anything to get ourselves ready. And even if we hadn’t been so weak, we wouldn’t have known what to do anyway. We can understand someone dying for a person worth dying for, and we can understand how someone good and noble could inspire us to selfless sacrifice. But God put his love on the line for us by offering his Son in sacrificial death while we were of no use whatever to him.” Romans 5:8

The BIBLICAL response to identity crisis:

In Christ’s family there can be no division into Jew and non-Jew, slave and free, male and female. Among us you are all equal. That is, we are all in a common relationship with Jesus Christ. Also, since you are Christ’s family, then you are Abraham’s famous “descendant,” heirs according to the covenant promises.” Gal 3:28