Did you grow up in the Church but; the Church did not grow up in you? Did you regularly attend Church and regularly participate in all the auxiliaries yet, you did not or do not really have a real relationship with the Lord? Do you just go to Church and the moment you are behind closed doors you abandon all of God’s principles for living? Do you live Monday thru Saturday conforming to the world? Do you go to Church, study God’s Word but don’t really understand how to apply it to your own life? Have you or do you truly live a Godly life before your spouse and children or friends and relatives? Are you obedient to your pastor but disrespectful to your spouse? Are you a great Pastor who is a lousy husband? Do you really know what it is to have a personal relationship with the Lord? If the Lord was to return today can you truly say you will be “caught up in the air to meet Him?” Do you know that Jesus really does make a difference in your life? I am not talking about some religious experience. I am asking you these questions to provoke thought.
For many accepting Jesus Christ is a public experience. For many it is a procedure. For many, accepting Jesus Christ means to have your name on a membership role. Go through a basic initial training; decide what auxiliaries you would like to participate in then, jump right in. (I say auxiliary because there was a time when it was unheard of to say ministries.) If you attend regularly, pay your tithes, don’t make any waves, nor question the process, you have achieved conversion in the eyes of your trainers? In many cases you are expected to give in and yield to those who are in charge regardless. If you are related to or accepted by the established inner circle it is quite possible that as long as you conform to their wishes you can pretty much do whatever you desire. You do not really have to make any major changes in your personal life. Why? Because you love them and they love you, you have proven successfully that you are teachable, obedient and that you respect authority. They also are heart readers and can determine who is who? Hooray! You are now accepted in to what a very good God given friend of mine calls “the club”. Does any of this sound familiar? Did you grow up in the Church but the Church did not grow up in you?
What is the Church? Webster defines Church as; a building of public worship and especially Christian. A body or organization of religious believers. The clergy of a religious body. The Word of God teaches us that HIS people are actually His Church! The Christian Church is really a family of believers who have truly accepted Jesus Christ as their personal Savior and Lord. Who earnestly and faithfully have committed to being governed by God’s principles. As long as we remain on this side of heaven there is room for improvement.
Commit means to; put in trust. To cosign for preservation, disposal or safekeeping, to obligate, bind to and live by. When you commit to live for the Lord; you agree to surrender to His will and His way. You really should live your life from the perspective that God really does see everything. His Holy Spirit becomes your inner guide. You consistently study His Word. As you walk in faith and obedience to God’s principles you are strengthened spiritually. You don’t conform to the world neither do you disrespect the laws of the land.
The Lord loves us so much He gives us the freedom to choose. In His Word He tells us if you abide in Him He will abide in you. His Divine and Holy Spirit will take up residence in your soul. His Holy Spirit is also known as the Comforter. The Comforter will become your inner guide; The Comforter will make your conscious sensitive and aware of Godly instruction for life and daily living. The Comforter will let you know that Jesus Christ is the “Bread of life” John 6:35. That He is the “True Vine” John 15:1. That He is the “Light of the world” John 8:12. That He is “the way, the Truth, and the life.” John 14:6
God will give you a mentally sound mind. It is your choice to continue to sharpen it with His Word.
Ask yourself have you really chosen God’s way? Have you changed or just outwardly conformed to be accepted? If this is the case you will have very little self discipline. Nor will you have true inner peace. If you have truly changed there is an inner metamorphosis. You will begin to walk in the fruit of His Spirit. Do you really seek the truth? Or do you seek to prove and accept what is false? Is Jesus truly important in your home, job, career and life? Did you grow up in the Church but the Church did not grow up in you?
“TRUE MINISTRY IS NOT just about how well you CAN sing, dance, preach, proclaim or teach GOD’S WORD; for many, can do that. GOD’S WORD IS ALIVE!!! It goes far beyond the surface… The depth and dimensions of His infallible Word is without limit. Ministry is about carrying the TRUTH of HIS GOSPEL to the world at large… To share HIS WORD & MISSION to individuals,families and communities ALL throughout this world. Today there are many ways and resources in which we can do this…
Christianity is a daily lifestyle. Please do not limit this to your geographical location, assembly or denomination of choice. Live GOD out LOUD for the world to see… “O MAGNIFY the LORD with me. Let us EXALT HIS NAME together!”
MINISTRY is NOT just causing the masses or an individual to go into a multiplicity of temporary moments escaping into emotional despair or a frenzy… This will only result in a temporary fix. Quite often it will cause an ongoing continual series of emotional roller coaster ups and downs. The person is often compliant to participate in the moment because they have a great need to feel accepted.
I am ALL for whole heartedly praising the LORD! But know this “GOD IS NOT the Author of confusion!”
True worship means to “WORSHIP the LORD in SPIRIT and in TRUTH!”
MINISTRY is often inclusive of displays of heartfelt emotions. It should usher you into the spiritual atmosphere known as the PRESENCE of the LORD. Here your awareness is heightened. This is where strongholds are broken and many or one can be truly delivered, healed and set FREE. We must sincerely invite the infilling presence of the Lord within and seek His direction. MINISTRY is about how effectively you can encourage others to TRUST & BELIEVE in the LORD without manipulation. MINISTRY is dependent upon HIS HOLY SPIRIT. This should not be orchestrated or just for a visual effect. The intent is to make others aware of the Omnipresence & Omniscience of our Omnipotent Lord & Savior. To encourage them to seek to freely Worship our Lord in public corporate worship as well as private worship! We as His Ambassadors are to encourage individuals to desire to want to embrace THE TRUTH of HIS WORD into their daily lives!
We need His Holy Spirit to continually open our understanding to become enlightened. GOD IS HOLY! There is no other written text that compares to HIS WORD. To grow in His Grace, Knowledge, Love, Wisdom & Understanding. We must submit to His Will & His Way. We must readily submit and seek the Lord for direction while in the Valley of the Shadow of Death which is the earth. God’s Church is universal. LORD, “YOUR KINGDOM COME, YOUR WILL BE DONE on earth as it is in HEAVEN!”
KNOW GOD’S WORD for yourself! Therefore, FOLLOW JESUS and be lead by HIS SPIRIT! SALVATION is about living to be FREED from sin reigning in your life. It is very important to spend personal time with the LORD in HIS WORD
~ GOD WANTS TO IMPROVE THE QUALITY OF YOUR DAILY LIFE ~
GOD WANTS each of us to render ourselves up to HIM as a vessel. To live out as well as IMPART HIS TRUTH via song, dance, preaching & teaching in such a WAY that the infilling power of HIS HOLY SPIRIT is quickened within or enters the hearts & minds of those who HE desires to reach…. HIS HOLY SPIRIT IS HIS COMFORTER!
“PRAY without ceasing” ALL throughout your day. This is how you STAY CONNECTED to the LORD! YOU NEVER KNOW what a DAY may bring. Therefore, prepare EVERYDAY to take some TIME in the PRESENCE of the LORD to “BE STILL & KNOW!”
~ LIVING AS CHILDREN OF GOD ~
~ BE RIGHTEOUS AS CHILDREN ~
“If you KNOW that HE IS RIGHTEOUS you KNOW that everyone who does right is born of HIM! How GREAT is the LOVE the FATHER has lavished on us, that we should be called Children of GOD! And that we are!
The reason the world does not know us is that it DID NOT know HIM!
Now we are Children of GOD, and what WE WILL BE has not yet been made known. But we KNOW that when HE APPEARS we SHALL be like HIM. for we SHALL SEE HIM as HE IS,
EVERYONE who has this HOPE PURIFIES himself, just as HE IS PURE!”
~ SINNING IS CONTRARY TO FAITH ~ I JOHN 1
With GOD at your side you CAN become ALL that HE has created you to be! You CAN learn to discipline yourself and sin less with the aid of HIS Holy SPIRIT. Self~Control is part of the Fruit of His Spirit! He will manifest and multiply the Fruit of His Spirit within you. You CAN become stronger as your own unique self. Live a life of ministry. Daily ask for the infilling presence of HIS HOLY SPIRIT. Let the LIGHT of our LORD shine through you for everywhere you are HE IS with you. SURRENDER, BELIEVE & TRUST GOD. For only with GOD the impossible becomes POSSIBLE!
Grace, Joy, Love & Peace in the Lord!
There really is a difference between being in the Church and the Church being in you? When the Church is in you the Holy Spirit becomes the governor of your soul. You live in the world, you are to be a law abiding citizen but you realize it is in God you move and live and have your being. You are convicted when wrong. You do not desire to be right just for the sake of being right.
The Church is not just a place to go. For you it is your daily lifestyle to live to please God!
This is not some unrealistic, legalistic, rigid, mythical, unattainable, cultic way of being. You realize how vitally important it is to live your life before the Lord. You know without a doubt that God is your Heavenly Father. That the devil his imps and no one or nobody can do anything to pluck you out God’s hands. That you truly belong to God and Jesus is your Lord and Savior! You have been adopted into His family and you know that you know that you know without doubting you are His child! You know what His Word says about being double minded? Wait I must caution you! You must be aware that you will be thought of as strange and or self righteous by those who really do not know or understand you. They will even put you through their heart test. But, those who really know you know that you have been raised in the Church and the Church is in you. Go pluck some spiritual fruit and “pig out”. Especially try some of His good ole patience. Don’t go there; this not some egotistical, arrogant or prideful statement. (This was worth repeating in case you are only reading Part 3)
You see, there really is a difference when you are in the Church and the Church is in you. You know that you have been bought with a price. You know that before you were formed in your Mother’s womb God knew and knows who you are. You also know it is not because of anything you have or have not. It is because of who He is! You praise Him not only in the building; but you praise Him in your home, on your job or at your business in your car, in the midst of trials and persecution. Not just in mere lip service. You even know you have a right to a silent protest when necessary. You actually know and understand why others do not understand you. They have actually helped to strengthen your faith and trust in God. Especially when you know they have done everything possible to attempt to discourage you.
God is awesome! Standing for God does not mean resorting to carnality. Your confidence cannot be in you, are anything else. Yes, you can have confidence because you know God as your Father. You know that He knows you as His child. You know and He knows that you have spent some deep intimate time together in His presence. You know that He has set you free! You know that you have been raised in the church and the church is in you.
God really has a better way for His children. God is not a respecter of persons. It does not matter to Him if you are rich or poor, black, white, red, yellow, tan or brown. He already knows where you live, work, play or “hang out.” He even knows if you have been raised in the church and the church is not in you. He knows if you walk in the flesh or abide in His Spirit. If you truly invite Him into your heart today He will come in your life and make a real difference. As you begin to grasp His Word it will wash you and cleanse you from all unrighteousness. He will also teach you how to guard your heart.
There are many wolves among the sheep. Don’t fret God always takes care of His children even in the midst of tests and trials. There are also those who call evil good and good evil. God will and can protect you and keep you from the grasp of wickedness. You must learn to humbly submit to His direction. He will open your spiritual eyes so you can begin to understand. No drugs, nicotine or alcohol needed. You will not want to see things as they appear. You will desire to see clearly. Your conscious will become sensitive and you will have a deepened desire to do what is right in His sight rather than in the sight of man. Realize that Jesus came that we might have life and have it more abundantly.
God also said in the Book of John to “let not your heart be troubled.” The earth truly is the Lord’s. Truly He will take care of you. God already knows what is going on. Just begin to exercise patience. He will bring what happens in the dark to the light. Did you know you have as much time as you need to do the things that God would have you to do. Study the story of Gideon. He prevailed not because of how many he had to help him. The victory always belongs to God. It is not in the amount, how many are for you are against you. Nor in whoever rises up against you.
God will make it evident to you and those about you that it is only by His grace and mercy that you can truly be successful. Spiritual success is not in the numbers. God knows when you have been raised in His Church and His Church is in you. “He leads me in the Path of Righteousness for His Namesake. Yea though I walk through the Valley of the Shadow of Death I WILL fear NO evil. For THOU art with me. THY ROD & STAFF THEY COMFORT me…” Psalms 23 Grace, Joy, Love & Peace to you in Jesus Name! If you really want to be happier, Live Everyday: “To God be the Glory!”
Growing and maturing beyond resentment!
When do you know that you have been delivered?
When you receive something that was mailed or sent to you; you “get it.”
Many week after week, month after month and yes sometimes year after years seek deliverance from a situation or… Break the cycle! God wants you to be free. But not to be free to continue in sin. Sin separates you from God. Don’t let what has happened keep you apart from God. Readily repent of any unconfessed sin and accept God’s forgiveness. What happened was beyond your control… Whoever or what ever hurt you or whoever you hurt cannot be undone. But you can move forward starting today! Allow time to release you from the trauma of the incident or situation by embracing the fact that God loves you and wants you to walk in the Path of Righteousness. Embrace the TRUTH of HIS WORD and the cleansing POWER of HIS WORD!
“All have sinned and fallen short of the Glory of GOD.” We ALL forever need Jesus as Lord and Savior!
Therefore when you understand the situation that has been bogging you down clearly, you also “get it!” You can then move forward and take control rather than let it take control of you. You must come out of denial and acknowledge that it occurred. Now you have decided to move forward but you will not allow it to consume your attention anymore. You will let your mind reflect on the cleansing Power of the WORD and on the HOLY SPIRIT’S POWER to transport you to move to higher ground. Spiritual cleansing is welcomed and it is here you build new memories that transcend what has been. You make way for more of GOD’S LOVE! Whenever the unpleasant memory or pain of it resurfaces you pray & “FOCUS” your attention elsewhere. You do not go into denial but embrace The Joy that comes from having the Lord in your life and walking in your growing “self-control.”
The Lord wants to Lighten your load. If you continue to carry the heavy burden it is an indication that you have not released it to Him. Each time it surfaces give it less time. If necessary time how long you will ponder upon it. Then switch to something else. Know that you have actually taken control of it by releasing it to the Lord and now you are all the wiser because of the experience. You know where you do not want to go; and its not backward!
You can choose to become whole! Depression wants to consume your today and rob you of JOY! Don’t blame others when you allow it to steal today’s JOY. See it for what it is. Sometimes you may have to grieve momentarily to validate your feelings. But you will less and less allow your emotions to get the best of you. It is important to remember that depression surfaces when you allow your unresolved anger to turn inward. Resentment means to feel again. Instead of letting go you hold on to the hurt and pain which fuels unhealthy emotions and holds you captive. Understanding what is gong on helps you to “Break Free!”
You no longer will allow the resentment to hinder you from moving forward to becoming a “better you!” You refuse to get stuck! Time is precious and you do not want to spend too much of it in regrets. Tomorrow is not promised so waste less todays. You can now see the experience as having gained some deeper insight because of that particular “Life Lesson.” You do not always need to explain why, because your understanding has matured and your healthy self-esteem has begun to flourish since you take responsibility for your own emotional responses. You do not let unpleasant what has been overtake what you have begun to build anew.
You are moving towards and choosing to live to please God and your confidence in Him is now growing as well. Always remember everywhere you are God is! Make it a goal to let no one come between you and the Lord. Invite the Lord into whatever is going on in you are around you. Learn for yourself what Ephesians 6 says about spiritual warfare. Hold it dear to your heart not just to quote but to embrace its POWER! Get your Spiritual Armor on. Remember HIS WORD is necessary Spiritual Food for your soul!
Yes, you can, Believe & say; “I CAN DO ALL things through CHRIST who strengthens me!” Philippians 4
Yes, You can move forward. Some unconsciously choose to stay “stuck.” Some simply don’t care either way they have grown so accustomed to anxiety. It has become and unhealthy “insecurity blanket!” Rather than let the resentment go they may elect to anesthetize themselves with drugs, alcohol, smoking, promiscuity, gossip, over or under eating or some other reckless behavior or distraction. This unhealthy behavior will only lead to further disappointment and possibly more addictions rather than freedom. Abusive outbursts and out of control undisciplined behavior and resentment is the unhealthy response rather than deal with the inner pain. You can break the cycle. But it takes work & dedication!
Know that GOD wants you to be Happy. He wants you to experience the Fruit of His Spirit. See Galatians 5. Jesus overcame sin in the flesh for us! We are not to make anyone else responsible for our happiness. Being happy is each individual’s own personal responsibility. As a believer God’s Holy Spirit is always there to help us at all times. Sin is what separates us from God! We must humbly submit and be willing to repent of any sin. Then we can keep moving forward to wholeness! THANK GOD for your DELIVERANCE!
God wants us to become complete in Him
God is omnipresent therefore everywhere we are God is there. As believers our body is a temple where God’s Holy Spirit resides once we accept Jesus Christ into our hearts as Savior & Lord. His Word is Spiritual Food for our souls. There is miraculous cleansing power in the blood of Jesus! God wants us to daily draw near to HIM with sincere hearts. Here is how we begin to move toward spiritual wholeness.
When we are connected to the LORD He will help us become all that He wants us to be. In an ongoing growing intimate personal relationship with the Lord we can discover everything that we will ever need for life & living. God never intended for us to be dependent upon others for our security and significance. He only wants us to be dependent upon Him. This is why we need to disconnect from the world and connect and stay plugged into the Lord! This is also why He encourages us to “PRAY without ceasing.” This keeps us focused upon HIM! God is omniscient. God is the source of everything that is genuinely good. If we all were ALL dependent upon Him this world would be a much better place to live. HIS CHURCH, our marriages, our families, our homes, neighborhoods, cities, towns, states, countries and the world at large would all be a lot happier and healthier.
God wants to continuously open our spiritual eyes and provide abundant living in every area of our lives. He wants the Fruit of His Spirit to manifest and multiply within our daily lives. When we are connected to the Lord we are even more cognizant of the world and what is happening all around us, yet we worry less as we learn to trust God more. Our discernment is sharper, our inner peace enhanced and we also become more spiritually enlightened.
Life on earth is designed as a continuous experience of lessons that can help us to grow spiritually. We can elect to grow closer to God or we can grow further away from Him. Anything that is not growing is dead! I was taught by a wise loving mother that, “We are forever becoming, and we never arrive.” This simply means that there is always something to learn as long as the Lord has us on this side of Heaven. We never get to the place that we do not need the Lord! God is the ultimate Father and He can feel as well as fill the void, resolve any despair as well as correct and heal any dysfunction that persists. God loves us and wants what is best for each of us.
GOD allowed His Son Jesus Christ to die in our place. The past, present & future sins of the world were placed upon Christ on the cross. “For He hath made Him to be sin for us, who knew NO sin; that we might be made the righteousness of GOD in Him!” 2 Corinthians 5. He overcame sin in the flesh for us and has given us His Holy Spirit to help us live better God centered lives. Jesus Christ died so that we could become FREE from habitual sin! As we grow in His grace, understanding, knowledge & wisdom and apply His principles to our own lives we should begin to sin less. We are to be ambassadors for Jesus Christ! After we complete the course of life we who are believers return to Him to live through eternity. Each day we are to live on earth as though our Lord was going to return!
“For God so loved the world, that He gave his only Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have eternal life. For God did not send His Son into the world to condemn the world, but to SAVE the world though HIM!” John 3 Everyday: “To GOD Be The GLORY!”
GOD designed us to be controlled from the inside out by HIS HOLY SPIRIT! This is why when we accept JESUS CHRIST as SAVIOR & LORD HIS COMFORTER comes to abide and live within us! HE is our Internal Spiritual Teacher that can lead us to ALL TRUTH! HIS WORD does not say; lead us to some of the TRUTH! This is why: “The true worshipers worship the LORD in SPIRIT & in TRUTH!” We should have;”A GREAT HALLLELLLUJAH” time whenever we worship & praise HIM knowing all that the LORD has done for us. It is our choice to live each day to please GOD or live to be accepted by others and conform to the ways of this world. “The Word is near you; it is in your mouth and in your heart, that is the Word of Faith we are proclaiming; that if you confess with your mouth that “JESUS IS LORD!” and believe in your heart that God raised Him from the dead, you WILL be SAVED. For it is with your heart that you believe and are justified, and it is with your mouth that you confess and are saved. As the Scripture says; “Anyone who God trusts in Him will never be put to shame” Romans 10
You do not ever have to be ashamed once you truly realize the anointing cleansing POWER of HIS HOLY SPIRIT when you are walking in the LIGHT of HIS WORD! Don’t ever let anyone make you doubt GOD’S OMNIPOTENT POWER!
When God created Adam He placed within him everything that he would need for life and living. God realized that Adam needed a life partner. He then placed Adam into a deep sleep and took out of Adam one of his rib bones and made Eve. Adam was created whole! It was sin that weakened him and separated him from God and made him doubt what God had said. Jesus made it possible for us to once again become whole. We must become sleep to the ways of this world and awakened to the things of God. We must allow Him His rightful place as our Creator & Maker within our hearts, lives, homes and places of worship. We must let Him bring forth a better way of living and ignite our hearts to sincerely “Worship HIM in SPIRIT and in TRUTH!” Through Jesus Christ we can once again become whole!
If you do not have a spouse don’t feel left out, partner up with the LORD! You are not alone. Everywhere you are He is there! He wants you to be content and complete in Him! Live before an “Audience of One!” There is nothing wrong with wanting a spouse. Your natural desires make you who you are. Continue to ask the LORD to give you a spouse who you can grow together with if you so desire.
God saves us through the Power of His Holy Spirit so we can be saved from the temptation of sin reigning within our lives. You can be physically strong yet spiritually and emotionally very weak and unstable. God wants to transform us by the renewing of our minds through His Word! God wants us to be or become happy married or if you are single. He has placed within us a void that only He can fill. We can have a Gethsemane experience when we commit to spending time alone with the Lord in prayer and meditating upon His Word! God wants us to repent of our sins. It is through the power of His Holy Spirit that we can be spiritually refreshed refueled & renewed. God wants us to become whole!
We can share our thoughts and ideas as well as manmade approaches to seeking wholeness. There is a degree of good in some of the philosophies of man. However one must pray for discernment to better understand the will of God. The infallible Word of God and His principles for life & living will always remain superior. It is important to keep in mind that God is our Creator and Maker of this world that we live in and knows what is best for each and everyone of us at all times. He did not make us to be robots. He made each of us uniquely. Once we truly accept Jesus Christ into our hearts His Holy Spirit is awakened within us. His Holy Spirit internally resides and becomes our Spiritual Guide and Comforter. He is the ultimate wonderful Counselor!
God does not want us ignorant of His ways. He has not left us alone to struggle here on earth. One just needs to sincerely and diligently seek Him and His Word above all else. “So then, just as you received Christ Jesus as Lord, continue to live in Him, rooted and built up in Him, strengthened in the FAITH as you were taught, and overflowing with thankfulness. See to it no one takes you captive through hollow and deceptive philosophy, which depends on human tradition and the basic principles of this world rather than in Christ. For in Christ all the fullness of the Deity lives in bodily form, and you have been given fullness in Christ, who is the Head over every power & authority.” Colossians 2
We must live or begin to daily live our lives to please Him. “Therefore, I urge you brothers, in view of God’s mercy, to offer your bodies as living sacrifices, holy and pleasing to God! This is your spiritual act of worship. Do not conform any longer to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to rest and approve what God’s will is ~ His good, pleasing and perfect will.” Romans 12. God’s will for us is to become whole! We have no righteousness of our own. But through the power of His Holy Spirit we can be cleansed from all unrighteousness. GOD does not and cannot lie. HE IS The SPIRIT of TRUTH! He can daily renew our hearts and our minds. We in turn have to offer ourselves unto Him and embrace and implement the Truth of His Word within our own personal lives. Therefore we pray; “Your kingdom come! Your will be done on earth as it is in Heaven!” Grace, Joy and Peace to you in Jesus Name. Yes GOD can make us whole! Yes we can strive for spiritual perfection! Yes we can become complete in HIM!
One of the most Honorable and Praiseworthy qualities admired most about Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., was that He was a Diplomatic Ambassador of Peace! Dr. King was a PEACEMAKER, and a strong man of FAITH, INTEGRITY, JUSTICE, BIBLICAL PRINCIPLES and VALUES! In His avid quest to fight for equality and justice he embraced non violence! Dr. Martin Luther King was a Baptist Minister born at noon in his family home on January 15,1929 in Atlanta Georgia. How ironic his Queen Anne style home was in what is known as the magnificent “Sweet Auburn District.” He was an avid and dedicated prominent leader in the “Civil Rights” movement! However it was because of his gallant efforts he was violently assassinated in 1968 at the age of 39. Dr. King fought long and tenaciously for the equal rights for people of Color! He wanted the same rights that were extended to Whites extended to all people! He was especially instrumental in ending legal segregation that plagued African Americans in the South. Dr. King led many powerful and peaceful demonstrations. For his many efforts he was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize in 1964!
Dr. King came from a ancestral lineage of Baptist Ministers. His father and his grandfather were ministers! They both became pastor’s in succession of the Ebenezer Baptist Church in Atlanta, Georgia! He was raised in a very comfortable, loving and stable middle class Christian home! He was a brilliant, well educated and gifted man! He excelled prolifically in his studies and skipped both the (9th) ninth and (12th) twelfth grades! He was admitted to the impressive Morehouse College at the early age of only (15) fifteen years old.
King was aware from a very early age of the obvious discrimination that existed against African Americans. There is an interesting little story of when he was only 6 years of age, his white playmate told him that they could no longer play together since they were now going to segregated schools! Before King’s going off to college, he first went to work on a tobacco farm in Connecticut. It is here he realized that the same discrimination was not apparent that he had experience in the South! He took note of the many activities that both whites, blacks, reds, yellows, browns and all colors shared. Here basically all Colors participated together! They went to worship together they could eat out publicly together, it was an eye opening experience!
King enthusiastically entered Morehouse College and initially his desire was to study medicine and law. However he became impressed with the marvelous oratorical skills of Benjamin Mays an activist, educated and intelligent man who was pursuing equal rights and racial equality! Mays had made and indelible impression upon his father, Martin Luther Sr. The young budding Martin remained impressed as well. He graduated from Morehouse College in 1948! King then attended Crozer Theological Seminary in Pennsylvania. King early on had a charismatic personality and was elected student body president of the predominately white student body. He eventually earned his Bachelor’s of Divinity in 1951. King then went on to Boston University, it is here he earned a Doctorate! Here in Boston is where he met the love of his life Coretta Scott. She was studying at the New England conservatory of Music. They married in a beautiful lawn ceremony at her family’s home! The ceremony was officiated by Rev. Martin Luther King Sr., his father in 1953. From their beautiful union was born 4 wonderful children!
Of the many protests that was led by King it was the infamous Montgomery Alabama bus boycott that received acclaimed nationwide attention. Here the lovely intelligent Rosa Parks a hard working gentle natured Black woman who was tired after a long honest day at work, as an excellent and skilled seamstress decided not to give up her seat to a white passenger. Mrs. Parks was in turn arrested under the segregation laws. A concerted effort was made by the Activists they strategically planned and implemented a strategic and successful peaceful bus boycott. There were numerous marches and “sit ins”…
It was on his way to support a group of sanitation workers in Memphis,Tennessee that Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. was assassinated! Senator Edward Kennedy chartered a plane to bring Dr. King’s body home to Atlanta! At least (30) thirty buses and (100) one hundred planes were used to bring mourners for his “Homegoing Celebration” Sympathy was poured out from all over the world! The night before King had delivered a most prophetic message! He made this statement: ““I’ve seen the promised land. I may not get there with you. But I want you to know tonight that we, as a people, will get to the promised land.” It was the very next day while standing on the balcony of the Lorraine Hotel, he was killed by a sniper’s bullet! King’s loyal supporters throughout America were quite upset and 100+ riots ensued in various cities across the country! After much uproar and ongoing media attention! His white assassin James Earl Ray pleaded guilty, was convicted and sentenced to 99 years in prison. He later attempted to recant his confession of guilt and said that he was coerced by his attorneys. Ray held to the stance it was a conspiracy! Dr. King’s family came to his aid and support of Ray’s defense and embraced him. Ray died before he could be acquitted. Coretta Scott King, Dr. King’s widow made this statement upon Ray’s death; “America will never have the benefit of Mr. Ray’s trial, which would have produced new revelations about the assassination…as well as establish the facts concerning Mr. Ray’s innocence.”
Dr. Martin Luther King has been compared and contrasted to some of the greatest! To name a few; George Washington, Thomas Jefferson and Abraham Lincoln. The fact remains that he was martyred has further served to keep his memory alive. His legacy lives on in the hearts of many as well as in the history of America’s historical corridors and the world at large. His legacy has a life of its own!
It was after his death that he was accredited with an overwhelming international status. There are roads, highways, buildings, schools and institutions named in his honor throughout the United States. In 1986 he was honored with a national Holiday celebrated on the 3rd Monday in January. In 1991 the Lorraine Hotel where he was assassinated became a Museum. In London they have a sculpture of him over the door to the west front at West Minister Abbey in his honor. Dr. King’s “I Have A Dream” oratorical famous speech is well remembered and often quoted by many universally! Excerpt from this speech: “And when this happens, when we allow freedom to ring, when we let it ring from every village and every hamlet, from every state and every city, we will be able to speed up that day when all of God’s children, black men and white men, Jews and Gentiles, Protestants and Catholics, will be able to join hands and sing in the words of the old Negro spiritual, “Free at last! free at last! thank God Almighty, we are free at last!”
Dr. King was a wonderful inspiring man of God whose voice in the midst of the prevalent and tumultuous prejudice harnessing America opened the pathway to equality for all colors! His eloquence, charismatic style, self sacrificing, courageous and arduous commitment will forever be ingrained in the chronicles of America’s History as well as the hearts of many! King lived under the microscope of the Federal Bureau of Investigation the ongoing surveillance was spearheaded under J. Edgar Hoover. Many unfounded allegations were made to undermine his credibility. But none of them could serve to tarnish his incredible, impeccable, accomplishments as a committed man of God and strong ardent peaceful contributions as a Civil Rights Activist. Nor his infamous merited accomplishment of receiving the Nobel Peace Prize in Oslo Norway! Upon His acceptance he stated “I accept this award today with an abiding faith in America and an audacious faith in the future of mankind,”said King in his acceptance speech. “I refuse to accept the idea that the ‘isness’ of man’s present nature makes him morally incapable of reaching up for the eternal ‘oughtness’ that forever confronts him.
Indeed there is so much more that could be said about this dedicated man of God; Dr. Martin Luther King Jr… Yet, I close here with another memorable excerpt from “ I Have A Dream!”
I say to you today, my friends, so even though we face the difficulties of today and tomorrow, I still have a dream. It is a dream deeply rooted in the American dream.
I have a dream that one day this nation will rise up and live out the true meaning of its creed: “We hold these truths to be self-evident: that all men are created equal.”
“It is by Grace we are saved not of works lest any man should boast.” Salvation is a gift of God. God has predestined us to be conformed to the image of His son. Once we become saved it is a continual growing process?
The process of salvation was designed by God to redeem us from the curse of sin and death. Due to the original sin of Adam and Eve we have inherited a sin based nature. We have inherited a natural proclivity towards sin. When we begin to grow in the knowledge and grace of our Lord and Savior we can begin learning how to overcome our weaknesses. Not in our own strength but only by His power. Psalms 84:11 says “For the Lord God is a sun and shield; The lord will give grace and glory; No good thing will He withhold from those who walk uprightly.”
Jesus overcame sin in the flesh as an example. To demonstrate and model to us that when we are obedient to God we can overcome flesh weaknesses. We must make a conscious effort to live lives that are pleasing in the sight of God. The Old Testament is full of examples when God’s children lived Holy lives. We are to live Holy. Holy does not mean we are sinless. It means we consciously choose to be governed by what God says. We are set apart for His use. There should be a definite difference in the way you live. It should reflect change eventually. Your life should reflect some evidence that you have surrendered. God does not ask us to do anything that we are not able to do. God has said, “Be ye Holy because I am Holy”.
When we choose to sin there are consequences. Salvation does not exempt us from the consequences of sin. The law of sowing and reaping is true. You do reap what you sow. Begin to sow seeds of righteousness before your sin harvest overtakes you. The world embraces sin. It continues to lure the believer to think that walking the broad road is safe. God does love us unconditionally but He allows us to be impacted by sin. The world is currently experiencing the consequences of sin. Jesus who was without sin died in shame on the cross for us. He bore the weight of our sins. He died; He gave His life to atone for the consequences of our sin.
We have been justified. This means we have been declared righteousness. We have been sanctified. Pardoned from the guilt and penalty of sin. This still does not give us an excuse to sin. God’s grace shields us from the total impact of our sins. Roman 5 says; “Therefore having been justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ, through whom also we have access by faith into His grace in which we stand, and rejoice in hope of the glory of GOD and not only that, but we glory in tribulation, knowing that tribulation produces patience and patience, character and character hope. Now hope does not disappoint, because the love of God has been poured out in our hearts by the Holy Spirit who was given to us.”
Why do we continue to encourage sin to prevail? When we condone sin we are doing just that. Scripture tells us ” If we confess our sins He is faithful to forgive us of our sins and His blood will cleanse us from all unrighteousness”. We must begin to move to a higher level of functioning. Our works do not save us. But our works are supposed to display our faith. If we allow sin to recycle and reign in our lives we water down the effectiveness of salvation. We must implement self- control over our sin weakness. Jesus was strong yet compassionate. Breaking unhealthy cycles can be painful. The old cliché’ no pain no gain is warranted.
God’s grace is the equalizer. It reminds us that he has given us salvation in lieu of who we are! No one deserves or can earn salvation. Each of us must develop a personal relationship with the Lord. This is where your personal strength comes from. If we hide God’s Word in our heart it helps us not to sin against Him. The scriptures are designed to shine the light on our sin so we can be convicted. When truly convicted we can feel remorseful. This is the process that leads to true repentance. “Grace and peace is multiplied by the knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ” According to II Peter 1:2
Quite often people don’t know the difference between persecution and conviction. Persecution is to harass in a manner to injure, grieve, or afflict. Convict means to find or prove guilty! The two are often confused. When you allow someone to feel convicted they may often see you as negative. Why? Because they will often associate you with the guilt they are feeling. They quite often feel you are persecuting them. It is very important to know your motives. You must learn to be a guardian to your heart. When you know your motives and you are aware God knows your motives you will have inner peace. Take time to study the prophets. You will be able to clearly see that they were considered as very negative. You see God’s grace is crucial for the Christian. It will sustain you when you are misunderstood.
Life is full of many valley and mountain top experiences. The casual acceptance of sin has allowed many to be deceived. Dysfunction has been sanctioned and embraced. Weakness nourished and comforted. Dysfunction has become an unhealthy comfort zone for many. God does not want any of His children to be a slave to sin. When you are a slave to something or someone it or they control you! Abandoning unhealthy cycles can be painful. But it actually leads to freedom! We begin to embrace freedom when we learn to take responsibility for our actions. Abandon the tendency to blame someone else. This will also begin to free you from the difficult merry-go-round of dysfunction. Did you know it is much easier to blame someone else for your unhappiness? If you take an honest examination you may possibly be able to determine the origin of your unhappiness. Quite often it was there long before you met your current accuser. Begin to take control by taking responsibility. Find healthy ways to meet your physical emotional and spiritual needs. Hebrews 4:16 tell us to”Come boldly to the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy and find grace to help in time of need”
Paul had a thorn in his flesh but God told him his grace was sufficient! We today still don’t know what that thorn was! Perhaps it was the very thing that brought Paul in such close fellowship to the Lord? God allows people, situations, and things in our life for a reason. Discipline is not usually something we naturally welcome. Why? We would really rather avoid pain! Many times we would actually rather discipline someone else. But for the child of God discipline is absolutely necessary! A little acronym I learned long ago; Grace is actually Gods, Riches, At, Christ, Expense!
Christ did not need to suffer to learn obedience. He suffered for us! He humbled Himself for us! He fulfilled all of the requirements of righteousness for us! Roman 6:1 “What shall we say then? Shall we continue in sin that grace may abound? Certainly not! How shall we who died to sin live any longer in it? We as children of God must strive to continuously discipline ourselves to His principles! Ask your self have you died to sin? Or should I say or you dying daily to sin? Is sin reigning in your life? Have you ventured onto the broad road? Or are you sitting on the fence? Begin to lay aside any sin that hinders your walk with the Lord! Commence living and standing on the Word of God! Jesus sacrificed his life for us. The blood sacrifices of animals would not do. God said if you truly love Him you will keep His commandments. In Roman 12 we are told to; “Present your body a living sacrifice, holy and acceptable to God, which is your reasonable service. And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, that you may prove what is that good and acceptable and perfect will of GOD.”
America along with the world has been privileged to share a monumental, memorable phenomenon. Barak Obama becoming the 44th President of the United States of America is nothing short of a miracle! If you look closely and attentively throughout the corridors of America’s history you will find that what was thought to have been unheard of has happened. By the grace of God the “Impossible has become possible!”
It took faith, fortitude, stamina, dedication, persistence and perseverance to forge ahead against insurmountable odds for Barak Obama to pursue relentlessly the position of president. His winning the candidacy for the President of America reaches far beyond the United States. It has been said that his methodical, strategic campaign was a seamless, well planned, professionally skilled endeavor of any other candidate. This victory has brought about a much needed message of “Hope” and renewal of confidence within the American people. It also yields a restored “Faith in God.” The Word of God tells us that “Faith is the substance of things hoped for the evidence of things not seen.” The Truth and promises of the scriptures have been “made alive.” “With God All things are possible.” One can surely appreciate the fact that the ” highway of possibilities” has been opened. The possible pathway of opportunities are boundless for our nation, the world and future generations to come.
Traveling throughout the world affords one the opportunity to broaden your perspective and experience and envision life through a much broader lens. I am thankful for having been afforded such an opportunity, to travel throughout the world along with my husband /pastor as well as in a group. The world is so very diverse with a plethora of multi cultural people, customs, religions and beliefs. All having such a broad assorted variety of lifestyles in which an innumerable amount of peoples with diverse backgrounds live together. But regardless as to where I have traveled, from Mexico to Aruba, the Bahamas to Jamaica, England to Rome, Athens Greece to Ephesus, France to Spain and Switzerland…. I have always been thankful to return home to America. We have met wonderful people. There have been countless wonders, magnificent architectural expressions and artistic monuments as well as majestic sceneries to behold from the hilltop Montserrat to Notre Dame Cathedral, St. Peter’s Basilica in Vatican City to the Blue Mosque and Hagias Sophia in Turkey. Yet I have never seen nor experienced a place where the freedom in which we are privy to here in America is experienced anywhere else in the world. It is because of this freedom and opportunity Barak Obama has become the 44th and 1st Afro American President. How ironic he and his family will be the first Black Family to ever take up resident in the nation’s capitol infamously known as “The White House.” “Look How Far The Lord Has Brought Us.”
In the 1930’s America was a segregated society where everything was separate. There were even separate water fountains and restrooms labeled for “Whites only” and less hygienic accommodations for the “Colored”. Let’s not forget back seats on buses and back entrances to public facilities. Many Blacks decided to migrate to the North. Being born and raised in California has had its benefits since here, we have been somewhat shielded from the dire profundity of racism and discrimination that permeated the deep south. Not that discrimination did not go on here, it did, and has ……. Here we have just been a tad further removed from the antagonistic discrimination which was so outwardly and blatantly, readily displayed itself in the deep south. Despite the fact America is a country made up of immigrants from all over the world. Where slavery was practiced and embraced. Where many Whites felt that they were superior to Blacks and we were perceived as inferior. To many even to be dark skinned was considered a curse. To be beaten, severely punished, raped or lynched and treated less than human was once considered acceptable behavior. The right to learn how to read and write was also denied as well as deemed illegal. Dissension, factions, immorality and discord are works of the flesh. Here is an excerpt from the article; Blacks are better off than in 1999 than in 1960 “After the Civil War, many amendments were passed in order to better represent blacks in America. The 13th, 14th and 15th amendments all changed blacks’ lives drastically and positively. The 13th amendment ended slavery and the 14th declared blacks as citizens. The fifteenth amendment stated that anyone can vote, regardless of color or race. However, the South devised poll taxes and literacy tests in a successful attempt at preventing blacks from voting. But in 1964, after a sufficient number of states ratified an amendment proposed by Congress, the tables turned for blacks. The 24th amendment banned poll taxes. The voting act of 1965 banned the use of literacy tests related to voting. Voting gave blacks a say in government and helped raise the moral of blacks in America.” “Look How Far The Lord Has Brought Us.”
I can personally recall from time to time watching on television the injustices broadcasted on the news and the many interruptions for special bulletin news reports as a child. I can remember the many tales of my parents and the many experiences they encountered growing up in the early 1900’s in Arkansas. I was a mere toddler when segregation in the schools legally ended in 1955, which resulted in the Montgomery Bus Boycotts. The Supreme Court eventually ruled that Alabama segregation laws were unconstitutional. It is during this time that Rosa parks decided not to give up her seat to a white person simply because she was so very tired. This protest resulted in Dr. Martin Luther King a Baptist Minister at the time, being ushered to the front lines as a prominent Social Leader for the Black Community. Discrimination in theaters, hotels, hospitals and public places continued on until in 1964 Congress passed a Civil Rights Act. Dr. King lead many “Peaceful Freedom Protest Marches” protesting the many injustices upon Blacks. Dr. King believed, practiced and exemplified the Fruit of God’s Spirit which is Love, Joy, Peace, Patience, Kindness, Goodness, Faithfulness and Self-Control. “Look How Far The Lord Has Brought Us.”
I can recall when I was in Jr. High School during the sixties, as president of my homeroom. I clearly remember having to lead the class in the “Pledge of Allegiance.” But, halfway through one particular morning, all of a sudden it dawned on me. It had become quite clear to me that it really was not “Liberty and Justice for all”. So I decided that I would silently and peacefully protest not to complete the pledge. Of course it did not go over big at all with my homeroom teacher. But it was a real awakening in my soul… One cannot help but to appreciate the far reaching magnitude of what has taken place here on November 4th 2008! It will be forever recorded in America’s History. American has resumed its intended purpose and the opportunity to provide “Liberty and Justice for All” has been forthrightly reinstated! There is no doubt that the successful election of Barak Obama was a concerted effort that included a network of people of All Colors and creeds working together. This is truly a victory for ALL people of America! He comes from a multi faceted colorful ancestral heritage that represents a multitude of people. “With God ALL things are possible.” His Word tells us “that God is not a respecter of persons…” It may be hard for the finite mind to fathom that God who is Omniscient, knew way back then, even from the very beginning of time what would be taking place today! “Look How Far The Lord Has Brought Us.”
We as Christians and as a Country have so much to be thankful for. All of God’s Word is true! Today we are living in perilous times. But despite the nations many financial hardships, declining economy, overwhelming number of businesses closing, devaluation of property, wars and rumors of wars, terrorists attacks, natural disasters, famines and earthquakes in divers places throughout the world, we can have peace knowing God is still in absolute control! Absolutely nothing gets by Him! Romans 12 tells us, “To not be conformed to the pattern of this world! But to be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is, His good, pleasing and perfect will…” As a professed Christian and believer it is very important to know God’s Word! To have an intimate personal relationship with HIM! The book of Romans goes on to tell us that in leadership the ability to govern diligently is a gift from God. Ultimately every authority, government and principality is under God’s authority and the headship of Jesus Christ. Colossians tells us that ” For by Him All things were created: things in heaven and on earth, visible, and invisible, whether thrones or powers or rulers or authorities; all things were created by Him and consist for Him…” Whether you believe it or not only God is Sovereign! The Bible tells us how God, delivered the children of Israel out of Egyptian bondage. There are also endless true life stories in His Word of how He delivered His people from unjust rulers and countless situations that seemed impossible. “Look How Far The Lord Has Brought us.”
It is through a committed personal relationship with His Son, our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ one can truly experience necessary continued spiritual growth and development as well as His peace and freedom that surpasses the understanding of man. There are invaluable benefits knowing who you are in Christ. Today it is through God’s grace and mercy America has been delivered! It was quite evident as we all watched the hysterical excitement permeate the enormous crowds as Barak Obama was elected president. God has truly delivered America from the clutches of despair and hopelessness and ushered in a glistening glimmer of “Hope”! “Nothing is impossible with God.” In His Word He also tells us although we may be accused living among unbelievers (pagans) we must still live to please Him! God’s promise to “never leave nor forsake us” is quite true! Truly we can say “GOD BLESS AMERICA!” As Christians we must individually, collectively and corporately pray and ask God’s protection, grace, wisdom and direction to rest upon President Barak Obama , his family and his staff. As he takes upon his shoulders the awesome tasks of restoring America’s dignity, credibility and prominent visual universal position. He will encounter many land mines and obstacles. America has a tall order to fill. The 24th Psalms says, “The earth is the Lord’s and everything in it, the world and all who live within it…” As a country and a nation that proclaims to be “one nation under God with Liberty and Justice for ALL.” The Word says, ” With God All things are possible.” Praise be to God from whom ALL blessings flow. Praise Him ALL creatures here below… It is truly amazing ! Again “GOD BLESS AMERICA”
One can truly say “Look How Far The Lord Has Brought us.” He has delivered us from unjust rulers, slavery, oppression, and given us freedom. In America, Egypt, Libya, Iran, Yemen, and all over the world, Let Freedom Ring.
Yes, Look How Far The Lord Has Brought Us. He has brought us from a mighty long ways.“But we still have a long ways to go.” Listen/Purchase “Look How Far The Lord Has Brought Us” from the CD “Somebody Somewhere Was Praying For Me” by Brenda Lowe.
Jesus Christ is the WORD in flesh. He has all power. There is no power principality or anything that is not subject to Him; yet He humbled himself to be an example for us. His purpose was to make us aware of the importance of developing an intimate relationship with God through Him. The Comforter His Holy Spirit will direct you and teach you all things as you grow spiritually. Yet he always gives you the freedom to choose. God loves a cheerful giver.
Today there is much discussion on giving. How much, when to give and to who should it be given. Should you give to missions church or charities? Is the money used to further the gospel or to just maintain the building? Should it matter to you how it is used? Is tithing commanded? Do we tithe our gross or our net? When we give be it our money, material possessions or time it should be done responsibly. I believe in supporting ministries who focus on spreading the “Gospel”. This actually equips others to live victoriously. “The earth is the Lord’s and the fullness thereof them and they that dwell therein”. We are stewards of whatever God puts in our possession. I also believe when you consult Him HE will direct you how, when, who and who not to give to.
When I read the scriptures I see how Jesus saw that the needs of His disciples were met. The scripture even says they “lacked nothing”. Well, Jesus was poor. Jesus didn’t have a place to lay His head. Did you forget when He was a child He lived with Joseph and Mary. When He became of age His mission was to fulfill the Will of Our Father. “He who was rich became poor so we might become rich”. I don’t think He pulled money out of His pocket to pay the little lad for his lunch he used to feed the multitude. I think it was out of the mouth of a fish that His disciple found money? The point is giving is not just monetary. Money is the system that the world uses to exchange goods or services.
You should not manipulate people to give to God! The Lord does not need anything from us. We all need Him! God wants us to give HIM our lives. To daily live to please Him. There is nothing wrong with giving but it should not be under compulsion! When monetary giving is usually the primary focus of the Church it is usually because of something material man wants to do or accomplish. If or when there is a need simply say so and let those who are led to give accordingly. Tithes are often mandated from the clergy and widely encouraged. Well in the Old Testament the priests did not receive an inheritance and they were taken care of by the tithe. Does this mean that if tithes are received should a minister not then receive a salary? Biblically speaking the tithe was not always necessarily monetary; it was given from the yield of crops and animals etc… “Be sure to set aside a tenth of all that your fields produce each year. Eat the tithe grain, new wine and oil, and the firstborn of your herds and flocks in the reverence of the Lord in the place he will choose as a dwelling for his Name. so that you may learn to revere the Lord God always. But if that place is too distant and you have been blessed by the Lord your God and cannot carry the tithe (because the place where the Lord will choose to put his name is so far away, then exchange the tithe for silver, and take the silver with you and go to the place the Lord your God will choose. Use the silver to buy whatever you like; cattle sheep….” Deuteronomy 6. The Bible is clear that the tithing is to remind us to put go first.
To give or not give tithes as a tenth of your money is a bone of contention for some. Is this because there is an underlying fear that some will not give to the support of the church? Or that those who elect to tithe feel slighted when others don’t or entitled because they do? LORD HELP US!
It is important to spend time with the Lord in His Word!
“Remember this; Whoever sows sparingly will also reap sparingly, and whoever sows generously will also reap generously. Each man should give what he has decided in his heart to give and not reluctantly or under compulsion, for God loves a cheerful giver. And God is able to make all grace abound to you, so that in all things at all times, having all that you need, you will abound in every good work..” 2 Corinthians 9. God is able to meet your personal needs as well as the needs of His Church. Let the Lord lead you in your giving.
“Seek ye first the kingdom of God and HIS righteousness and everything will be added unto you”. If you put God first in you life He will provide whatever you need. The scripture says if you ask anything in His Will He will give it to you. You don’t have to beg, steal, manipulate, brow beat or coerce anyone. Don’t be envious of others. If you are not content with your blessings; take it up with God. “To whom much is given much is required.” Just remember persecutions come with blessings.
We often make decisions and don’t consult God. Or we consult Him and don’t listen. When we begin to feel the consequences of those decisions we want a fast relief. The problem is we don’t want to seek Him first! We often want something or want somebody to give us something that may not be in God’s will for us. We want the benefits but we don’t want to seek the kingdom first. Since God is omniscient ( all knowing) He knows what we need before we ask. Had you ever thought perhaps I’m not quite ready for what I’m asking for? Or perhaps my priorities aren’t right, or just maybe the time isn’t quite right? I believe when God puts something in your possession He will give you the wisdom how to handle it as well. Is God your source? Well what’s the problem? The “love of money is the root of all evil which while some coveted after, have erred from the faith and pierced themselves through with many sorrows.” There are people who will do anything for money. Money in itself is not evil. You see you can love money and not have any. You can also have a lot of money and not love it! Just to name a few of many in the Bible, remember Abraham, Solomon, Queen of Sheba, Joseph and Job to name a few? I think they had spiritual and material riches? But they also had the right priorities. It is God that gives the power to be rich.
I can never express enough the importance of having an avid personal prayer, worship and bible study. It will enhance your life tremendously. It will help you be a good steward. It will increase your spiritual discernment. It will also free you when others try to manipulate you to give or do anything out of guilt. When you grow spiritually your desire to give will as well. But you will receive much persecution when you don’t give your time and money when, how, and how much they think you should. Just know that God knows your heart and He will direct you. Be careful who and what you support. It is not necessary for others to understand or see what you do. God knows your heart and your intentions and He really does see everything. It is your obedience to Him that will cause you to reap bountifully.
God truly is a GOOD GOD. He has left no stone unturned to prepare us through His Word instructions for righteous living. When you accept Him as Lord and Savior He WILL supply all of your needs according to HIS riches in Christ Jesus. Begin to give as He instructs. Remember again what Paul tells us in Corinthians; “But this I say, he which soweth sparingly shall reap also sparingly; and he which soweth bountifully shall reap bountifully. Every man according as he purposeth in his heart, so let him give: not grudgingly, or of necessity: for God loveth a cheerful giver” Whatever you do, do it as unto the Lord and not man. Please the Lord and be a cheerful giver!