Archives for June2012

Are You A Fan or A Vacuum?

This morning as I woke up I looked out the bedroom window and watching the fan blades on our fan spin I thought to myself… am I like a fan blade? It wasn’t until I began writing this message that I fully understood what the Lord was trying to tell me…

“For the word of God is living and active. Sharper than any double-edged sword, it penetrates even to dividing soul and spirit, joints and marrow; it judges the thoughts and attitudes of the heart.” Hebrews 4:12 NIV 1984

Any good fan will have between four and six blades, it is in this construction (plus electricity) that the blades CUT through the air and circulate the air in the room making us cooler. While there is a sort of vacuum action taking place, it is much less about vacuuming and much MORE about cutting. It is with this thought that I have come to the conclusion that Christians need to CUT MORE.

 

 

CUTTING INTO THE WORD

If you have ever made a pie crust you will know exactly what it means to “cut into” something. Using two blades a cook will “cut” the butter into the flour that the recipe requires. Cutting into the flour and blending the dough through a series of cuts is what makes the pie crust airy and soft. The butter makes the crust flaky and golden, and the pie crust cooks evenly. Our Bible time should BE about “cutting” into the Word! Ask yourself these questions:

  • Is my Bible reading time boring?
  • Do I eagerly desire to spend time in God’s Word?
  • Do I WANT to share with others what I have learned/read?
  • Am I repeating the same prayer/passage over and over out of habit?

Depending on your answer to these questions, will determine wether or not you are “cutting into” the Word or merely sucking up the Word. We know that faith without works is dead, and if you continue to “suck” up your Bible time you aren’t going to make a difference in your environment.

FAN vs VACCUUM

While a fan cuts through the air, a vacuums sole purpose is to “suck and containerize”. While the area being sucked gets clean, the environment around the appliance doesn’t change. That vacuum sucks and sucks until it can’t suck any more and unless it is emptied it stops sucking all together! It has a bag of dirty trash sitting inside it and it goes nowhere. Am I suggesting the Word is “dirty trash”? NO! But the same word over and over again that never gets used will be of little or no effect!

“So shall my word be that goes out from my mouth; it shall not return to me empty, but it shall accomplish that which I purpose, and shall succeed in the thing for which I sent it.” Isaiah 55:11 ESV

The Bible says that God’s Word MUST return to Him! How does His Word “return to Him”? By faith! By your words! Each time you dig into the Word and find something you are excited to read, you receive it in your heart and speak it from your mouth! Speaking that Word is like a fan cutting through the air, the air circulates and CHANGES the environment! Does your environment need to change?! Change your air!

It is time for us believers to stop sucking on a dry word and holding it in our systems. It is time that we begin again cutting through the Word and find in it what we NEED: healing, prosperity, joy, peace of mind… its all in there – now go and get it! CUT INTO IT!

TIPS TO GET YOU CUTTING INTO THE WORD AGAIN

  • Go for a walk in the morning having downloaded onto your Mp3 some podcasts from preachers like: Joyce Meyer, Gloria or Kenneth Copeland, Jesse Duplantis, Joseph Prince, Billy Graham, etc… (If you do not have an Mp3, you can purchase CD’s through their websites)
  • Start reading the Bible in a version you can understand, the Message Version is excellent as is the ESV, NIV and NAS
  • Look in the Bible for topics that are pertinent to you. In the back of the book look for healing, prosperity, success, peace, joy… etc. and find out what God says. You can also use bible.cc as a topical word search.
  • Reread the book of John, including Jesus’ sacrifice.
  • Reread the stories of your youth (I LOVE the book of Genesis for inspiration)
  • Find books by your favorite Preachers that can guide you through specific principles, some authors we have are: John C. Maxwell, Miles Monroe, Robert Schuller, Og Mandino, Edwin Louis Cole, Norman Vincent Peale, Chip Ingram, Billy Graham and Dr. Creflo Dollar.

If reading the Word has become boring to you, or maybe you don’t think you have the time… chances are you haven’t been that excited about it. The Word IS sharper than any two edged sword when you use it… hopefully you will begin using it TODAY!

Have a most blessed day in your enthusiasm of the Word! May He cut through the garbage in your life and SUPERNATURALLY restore to you what once was yours!!

 

As a community of believers, we always welcome your comments and replies!

DO SOMETHING TODAY!

TAKE UP YOUR BED AND WALK

Soon another Feast came around and Jesus was back in Jerusalem.

Near the Sheep Gate in Jerusalem there was a pool, in Hebrew called Bethesda, with five alcoves. Hundreds of sick people—blind, crippled, paralyzed—were in these alcoves. One man had been an invalid there for thirty-eight years. When Jesus saw him stretched out by the pool and knew how long he had been there, he said, “Do you want to get well?”

The sick man said, “Sir, when the water is stirred, I don’t have anybody to put me in the pool. By the time I get there, somebody else is already in.”

Jesus said, “Get up, take your bedroll, start walking.” The man was healed on the spot. He picked up his bedroll and walked off.” John 5:1-9 MSG

Have you ever noticed how we as society tend to worship people who have already “done” stuff, instead of walking with people who are in the middle of “doing” things? When in reality only one person (Jesus) ever DID anything worth while. Compared to Him… everybody else is just a dusty old book on a shelf! Your story, your “autobiography” is the ONLY story worth telling, and when your walk with others in the pursuit of life, truth, and happiness you will undoubtedly be a much better person. Who do you know that’s dreaming, achieving, moving on in this world? Or are you stuck reading old books written by people who did something a lifetime ago and feeling like “When’s it my turn? When do I get to do something great?”

WHAT’S YOUR TRAINING ROUTINE?

It is said that,

In regards to Micheal Phelps, “In peak training phases, Micheal Phelps swims minimum 80,000 meters a week, which is nearly 50 miles. He practices twice a day, sometimes more if he’s training at altitude. Phelps trains for around five to six hours a day at six days a week. To give himself some additional entertainment in the water, Phelps listens to music during his long workouts with waterproof headphones. Swimming in the water, especially that long, can be pretty boring. Listening to music can provide that extra spark to your workout.”

As for Phil Mickelson the golfer, his trainer says: “We do a lot of high-repetition movements involved around the swing. In terms of exercises, we do a lot of rotational exercises. Golf is a rotation-based sport. It’s a rotational movement. You set up your body with a fixed spine angle, you rotate around that fixed spine angle trying to generate the maximum amount of power. The more power you have, the more club-head speed, if you have sufficient mechanics in your swing.”

Lebron James is on fire RIGHT NOW, here is his weekly workout routine: ” Monday: Superset 1, pushups: max reps, pullups: 10 reps, superset 2, dumbbell snatch: 5 reps each arm, cable single-arm row: 10 reps each arm. Tuesday: Superset 1, dumbbell squat:8-12 reps, swiss ball hamstring curl: 12 reps, superset 2, dumbbell stepup: 10 reps each leg, dumbbell calf raises: 12 reps each leg. Thursday: Superset 1, dumbbell Incline Bench press: 10 reps, lat pulldown: 10 reps, Superset 2, dumbbell single-arm overhead Press: 6-8 reps, dumbbell single-arm row: 10 reps each side. Friday: Superset 1, single-leg squat: 5 reps per leg, single-leg swiss ball leg curl: 10 reps each leg. Superset 2, dumbbell side lunge: 10 reps each direction, unstable jump rope: 45 seconds on a soft surface.”

Now, these are just some examples of professional athletes routines RIGHT NOW. I have chosen to write them down in hopes that those who are reading this recognize that Micheal’s GOLD metals in the Olympics weren’t the end of his story, Phil Mickelson’s victories didn’t come without a price, and Lebron isn’t the best in the league on accident. Their stories aren’t HISTORY, they are in the making RIGHT NOW.

TO OFTEN WE OVERESTIMATE THE EVENT

Author, educator, and leadership trainer John C Maxwell has said: “Too often we overestimate the event, and underestimate the process.” What a truth that is! Anything that has been done and done well was done with preparation and mental fortitude. Even the man who was told to “Get up and walk” by Jesus had to receive his healing, and decide to stand for himself. He exercised faith based on a decision of action as spoken by the Word of God. His story wasn’t over… it was JUST BEGINING!

My word of encouragement today is that you would hopefully look at whatever it is you are doing RIGHT NOW and make the adjustments necessary to start writing your own “biography”. That you would begin looking at your day-to-day actions and routines and STOP worshipping/focusing on the successes of others and BEGIN writing your own future with the Lord at the lead! Who is a better “trainer” than that?

 

Here is to your SUCCESS! Let us journey on this road TOGETHER!

Have a great day and night friends, God bless you!

 

As a community we gladly welcome your comments and replies!

 

MUCH TOO MUCH OF A HURRY

“Take care of yourself, have a good time, and make the most of whatever job you have for as long as God gives you life. And that’s about it. That’s the human lot. Yes, we should make the most of what God gives, both the bounty and the capacity to enjoy it, accepting what’s given and delighting in the work. It’s God’s gift! God deals out joy in the present, the now. It’s useless to brood over how long we might live.” Eph 5:18 MSG

GIVE YOURSELF AN FIVE EXTRA MINUTES

Recently, it has come to my attention what a rush we are all in. Yesterday while driving down the freeway I saw in oncoming traffic the after effects of a horrendous accident, with no less that four fire trucks. As always, I prayed for the people involved in the accident and their families since I know beyond a shadow of a doubt that they will permanently be affected by this tragedy.

What would an giving yourself an extra five minutes each day to get places do for you? Could you slow down, take an extra sip of coffee? Could your kiss your family “Goodbye” as you leave the house? Maybe that five minutes would keep you from accidents, prevent your irritability, or even lower your blood pressure. 5 minutes extra a day = an extra 1825 minutes a year. What would that time do for you?

TIME IS IRRELEVANT

In the book of Joshua, the Bible teaches us about a time when the Israelites were taking on an army comprised of five Kings, truly a mighty force! One would think that the Israelites wouldn’t have enough “time” to win the battle… but instead the sun STOOD STILL!

“So the sun stood still, and the moon stopped, till the nation avenged itself on its enemies, as it is written in the Book of Jashar. The sun stopped in the middle of the sky and delayed going down about a full day.” Joshua 10:13 NIV

Does time matter to God? Yes, and NO. Yes in the sense that His timing is perfect and He has a plan for His creation, and NO because (as in the case of Joshua) He can stop time whenever He wants or adjust it to fit His needs. Why then does time matter SO much to us?

THIS ISN’T GRAMMAR SCHOOL, IT’S LIFE!

When we were children we were charged with tardiness. Constantly pushed under the gun by an illusive “bell” that rang us into submission. Creating fear in most of our hearts, and forcing us to rush. Now as adults, there is no longer ANY need to rush! While some of us have jobs to be to on time, the majority of us can give ourselves that extra five minutes in order to prevent lateness and now that we are in charge of our own schedules we can realize that NO JOB is worth us endangering ourselves or others. A good friend of mine used to say, “Job’s are like putting your feet in a bucket of water – as soon as you pull your feet our the water fills right back up.” In other words, your job will continue without you if you don’t show up… am I suggesting you be unaccountable? Heaven’s NO! What I am suggesting is that if you have pushed yourself to the limit of time, don’t RUSH IT… God loves you, and rushing isn’t worth it!

 

Here is to a greatly paced day full of rest, recovery, and recouperation! You are God’s greatest gift and you deserve to be in control of your own time!

As a community we welcome your comments and replies!

WHY CAN’T WE LIVE LONGER?

The Bible tells us there was a time when we lived what seemed like forever. Methuselah lived to be 969 years old! Amazing. Some may wonder why we don’t live that long anymore while others may even be curios about what the flood had to do with our longevity. After the flood we were only given 120 years as opposed to the 6-700 at least before.

IF THEY COULD HAVE ONLY LIVED LONGER

I believe that everyone knows someone that they would have desired to see live longer, a Grandparent, a friend, a son, a daughter, or a parent. In the grand scheme of things however, we can’t question God’s sovereignty and throw too many questions to Him about why certain deaths happen, as He sees the whole picture and knows the effect each and every life has in relation to others. He is the Master Planner, most of us wouldn’t be who we are today if it had not been for certain unfortunate tragedies making us stronger, safer, healthier, or even kinder.

There is a wonderful book that I just finished written by Dr. Hugh Ross, an Astrophysicist and Biblical Scholar called: Hidden Treasures in the Book of Job: How the Oldest Book in the Bible Answers Today’s Scientific Questions. In this book Dr. Ross goes into great detail on how science relates to the Bible from the creation to the Dinosaurs. One particular passage that I found extremely interesting was this passage in regards to death and life expectancy:

“Skeptics sometimes use death as an argument to support their rejection of faith. Their line of reasoning goes something like this:

1. The God of the Bible claims to be all-loving and all-powerful.
2. An all-loving, all-powerful God would not subject His creators to an experience as profoundly dreadful and irreversible as death.
3. Therefore the biblical God must not be God, if there is a God.

Job and his friends held firmly to their convictions that death is something other than the cessation of all consciousness. They believed death is a doorway into a realm beyond life as we know it. Job sees it as the doorway to ongoing “peace and rest” (3:13) Zophar (Job’s friend) describes it as the doorway to “terrors”, “total darkness,” and “fire” for those who exalt themselves above God. (20:25-26)

One insight that emerges from this conversation is that a person’s view of death reflects his or her view of life and what life is about.

Job and his friends pondered life’s brevity, considering why a loving God would limit our earthy existence to a few trips around the sun. Job offered some remarkable observations. He seemed to recognize that a relatively short human life span effectively protects humanity by limiting the expression of evil. He describes how the death of the wicked delivers the righteous from evil assaults. (24:19-24, 27:18-23). The principle here is that when a person becomes irreversibly committed to doing evil, a longer life span would result in an escalation of harm.

(The author goes on to explain to us that in pre-flood times when humanity was allowed to live hundreds of years, the main cause for death was murder. To the degree that Noah and his family were the ONLY righteous human beings left on earth. Very few people died of natural causes during this time due to the sin of man and the extended life span, the righteous easily fell prey to the wicked, and would be all but extinct today if it were not for the newly shortened life span encouraging the righteous to make right with God quickly.)

Those who complain about the brevity of life fail to realize that potentially longer life spans can actually shorten human longevity. When God decreed in Genesis 6:3 that the maximum human life span would be abbreviated to about 120 years, he acted to protect humanity and extend the average human lifetime. He shielded humans committed to righteous living from becoming completely overwhelmed by those humans bent on rapacious greed and violence… God has allowed humanity to see that seven decades (or thereabouts) is adequate time for a person to choose his or her eternal destiny, pursue a life of worship and blessing, and pass along a legacy of virtue.

For those who have made peace with God in submitting to his authority and have received his offer of eternal salvation, the comforting knowledge exists that the Savior himself will come and personally escort the believer across death’s threshold. (See Ps. 23:4) As recorded in Acts, just before the young deacon Stephen crossed over death’s threshold, Jesus visibly appeared to him (7:54-60). The believer, therefore, need not fear the death event.” pages 40-43

Today, as we take into consideration our loved ones and our desire to hold them as tight as we can, as long as we can, let us also maintain the thought that the Lord has a divine purpose and plan for His creation. To quote Dr. Ross, “… God has allowed humanity to see that seven decades (or thereabouts) is adequate time for a person to choose his or her eternal destiny, pursue a life of worship and blessing, and pass along a legacy of virtue.”

If you have lost a son or a daughter, know that their lives touched deeply the lives of many others. That the Lord saw that it was fitting for them to go and be with Him, and even though their time was brief here on the earth it was long enough that they have passed along a legacy of virtue-

“When they heard this, they were furious and gnashed their teeth at him. But Stephen, full of the Holy Spirit, looked up to heaven and saw the glory of God, and Jesus standing at the right hand of God. “Look,” he said, “I see heaven open and the Son of Man standing at the right hand of God.”

At this they covered their ears and, yelling at the top of their voices, they all rushed at him, dragged him out of the city and began to stone him. Meanwhile, the witnesses laid their clothes at the feet of a young man named Saul.

While they were stoning him, Stephen prayed, “Lord Jesus, receive my spirit.”

Then he fell on his knees and cried out, “Lord, do not hold this sin against them.” When he had said this, he fell asleep.” Acts 7:54-60

May God continue to bless you my friends with encouraging words!

 

As a community we welcome your comments and replies!

You can buy Dr. Ross’s book through Amazon HERE 

YOU ARE NOT A MISTAKE!

Being a mom of five amazing kids has it’s pluses and minuses. On the plus side, there are these FIVE AMAZING KIDS… and on the minus side, having AMAZING KIDS means having to be an amazing mom! This amazing mom in the last few months has been busy homeschooling, cleaning, organizing, and lastly building a new baby! This makes me 18weeks pregnant this week! I’ve MISSED you, sorry this update has taken SO LONG!

THE NEW SITE

What began as routine site maintenance on our Wholehearted Ministries website, ended up as a total revamp and new look! I have gone through 130 pages of articles and catergorized them with an easy to use interface (YAY), and while I am not finished… I am excited to launch the new site today and share it with everyone who would like to stop by. I still have another nearly 300 articles to go! Thank you for your patience! I am hoping to getting back into writing everyday an encouraging and empowering word to visit with you my friends, and tel you hopw much I believe in and appreciate you! Here is to an AWESOME SUMMER! Please enjoy this article that I wrote over the break, and know that “You are NOT a MISTAKE! God made you ON PURPOSE!”

YOU ARE NOT A MISTAKE

 “Oh yes, you shaped me first inside, then out; you formed me in my mother’s womb. I thank you, High God—you’re breathtaking! Body and soul, I am marvelously made! I worship in adoration—what a creation! You know me inside and out, you know every bone in my body; You know exactly how I was made, bit by bit, how I was sculpted from nothing into something. Like an open book, you watched me grow from conception to birth; all the stages of my life were spread out before you, The days of my life all prepared before I’d even lived one day.” Psalm 139:13-14 MSG

Sometimes when the chips are down, or perhaps you feel as if you aren’t in the optimal place in your life, you might wonder what God was thinking when He made you. Did God make a mistake?

 Maybe you were abused as a child, or hurt in an accident. Maybe you were born into a family that subjected you to ridicule for not being “normal”. Whatever your unique circumstances may have been, please know that God does not make mistakes. He has a plan and a purpose for your life, just like this scripture states: “You know exactly how I was made, bit by bit, how I was sculpted from nothing into something. Like an open book, you watched me grow from conception to birth; all the stages of my life were spread out before you, the days of my life all prepared before I’d even lived one day.”

I don’t believe that you have to settle for less than God’s best. I believe that there have been great men and women who have come from behind. It is the great underdog story! The orphan that grew to become a Philanthropist, the child polio victim that won gold in the Olympics, the King who overcame a speech impediment in time of war, the disabled men and women who come back to prove that mind is more important than matter! Even our Lord Jesus who at one time was a humble carpenter’s son, died on the cross a prisoner’s death and yet will come back and rule all humanity as King! Everyone loves the story of the Comeback Kid or the Underdog who comes from behind! People want to hear from YOU!

What next?

  • Seek God in prayer and meditation, listening closely to what He has to stay and enter into a peaceful receptive state.
  • Next, ask yourself what it is that you can do. Can you write? Can you dictate to others? Can you draw, paint, or physically work with your hands?
  • Start looking around online, asking friends, or researching via books/magazines in the areas that you are most interested. Are you a visual learner, do you like to read, or are you an audible listener? Gardening, designing, science, math, literature… etc.
  • Begin gaining knowledge. Let’s say I LOVE basketball, but I am four feet nothing, and I don’t have game. But since basketball is my passion, I read all day and night about it. I watch all the games, and I know all the players. Someone might call me a “looser” because I know all of this information, when in reality this is an opportunity! As a self proclaimed “Freedom Counselor”, I would suggest to this basketball aficionado to keep reading! Keep studying! Do something like go back to school and study sports journalism or go online and start a sports blog, get a job at the local gym, begin to write as an analyst, coach your local team… there are so many options! Anytime that great knowledge is possessed and wisdom is displayed, someone will pay handsomely for that expertise! For example, top political strategists (the guys that help strategize in the campaigns), can earn salaries as high as $500,000 a year!
  • SHARE! After you have begun to amass knowledge in your personal favorite area of study, begin to share! If it is singing, sing a song to others! If it is reading, start a book club or write about what you are learning! If it is golf, by all means begin to compete! The only thing stopping you is your own belief!

I hope that this article has encouraged you to go that extra step, to understand that God doesn’t make mistakes… but man can make a bunch of excuses! There is nothing but opportunity out there, if you begin gaining knowledge in the subjects that you love, and share with others what you have learned. God has a plan for you, not go get yourself on His track!

 

As a community we welcome your comments and replies!