Monthly Archives: August 2013

Cute, Comfortable, Convicted or Condemned?

Jesus is considered by scholars such as Weber ...

Jesus is considered by scholars such as Weber to be an example of a charismatic religious leader. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Would you rather be cute than comfortable; Convicted in the spirit or condemned? Or would you rather have Jesus, who died for our sins? Would you live for God and die to sin? I’d rather have Jesus. Amen.

As Christians, we can’t be judgmental, selfish or pick and choose when to be a Christian. We are called to be ambassadors for Christ and must be a representative of God in all situations. Our attitudes, the way we treat others, the way we treat our family and our hearts must be a reflection of who we are in Christ. Under all circumstances, we are to die of self; represent Christ in every aspect of our life.

Being a Christian doesn’t mean you should be someone other than the person you were created to be. However, as a believer it will change the person you once were into the transformed person you are called to be. Being a Christian shouldn’t be that hard. It shouldn’t be that hard to live as the person God designed you to be or to live for God.

If someone were to ask you about your faith, how would you respond? Would you tell them about your faith in God? Or would you remain silent? Not everyone will approve or understand your decision to follow Christ. However, you mustn’t make an excuse to not tell others about Christ.

As believers, God’s Spirit lives in us. Even when others don’t understand the concept that God lives in us. We must not use this as an excuse when someone rejects God. Nor are we to remain silent or fear sharing the Word of God. “We are still one of God’s communication channels (1Cor 2:14, 15).” Be alert. Seize every opportunity. Be a mouthpiece for God’s kingdom.

Your voice can be an inspiration. It can be the voice of reason in someone else decision. When someone asks you about your faith, don’t be afraid to answer as a Christian. Your response can help someone make a conscious decision. “Another person’s question may be evidence that God’s Spirit is drawing him or her to the point of decision” (1Cor 2:14, 15).

Think on these things. And the next time you find yourself faced with such a question, ask yourself, who am I representing? Remind yourself, “I am an ambassador for Christ. I am a Christian.”

Would you rather be cute than comfortable; Convicted in the spirit or condemned? Or would you rather have Jesus? I’d rather have Jesus. Amen.

Be blessed! -JD

1 Corinthians 2:14-16 “The man without the Spirit does not accept the things that come from the Spirit of God, for they are foolishness to him, and he cannot understand them, because they are spiritually discerned 15 The spiritual man makes judgments about all things, but he himself is not subject to any man’s judgment: 16 “For who has known the mind of the Lord that he may instruct him?” But we have the mind of Christ.

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Be Encouraged!

The Triumphant Christ Forgiving Repentant Sinn...

The Triumphant Christ Forgiving Repentant Sinners, Painting by Johann Bockhorst (1604-1688) (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

A triumphant life is a reflection of the storms you’ve been through. No matter what man tried to do to you. God’s grace brought you through.

We may never know what a person has been through by looking on the outside. Only God knows what’s on the inside.

Never judge a book by its cover. We may look all put together. And not have two nickels to rub together. Outer appearances aren’t designed to reveal God’s glory in the struggle.

God will humble the proud and exalt the humble. He shows favor to the humble (Matt 23:12). When you put yourself in a dangerous place and fall from grace, submit. Humble yourself by faith.

Your present does not dictate your past. You are designed for greatness. Let go of the past. God knows all the struggles and hurts you have been through. God cares and loves you. For your faithfulness, God will reward you.

Rejoice! Don’t fret. God’s not through with you yet. He is Alpha and Omega. He is the beginning and the end. What God starts, he finishes. He who began a good work in you will carry it on to completion. For every trial, God sends it for a reason.

Be encouraged! What you see is not the end. God has begun a good work in you and will complete it to the end. Trust Him.

Be blessed! -JD

Numbers 23:19 “God is not a man that he should lie, or a son of man, that he should change his mind. Has he said, and will he not do? Or has he spoken, and will he not fulfill it?” (ESV)

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Mothers whoever you are and Children Too, This One is For You

Be careful how you treat your mother because there will come a day when she will not be on this side of heaven. But will be taken up to glory with God on the other side of heaven. You won’t be able to say “I love you” or call or text her or pass her in the wind. Once she’s gone, she’s gone. It will be the end. Cherish your mother. Tell her you love her if not always, every now and then. Appreciate her while she’s here. Because once the memory fades there is no fixing what you failed to appreciate while she was here.

I know this is a long post and I apologize for the lengthy thought, but this has been on my heart for a few days and I couldn’t help but share my thoughts.

My heart is heavy laden. I’m confused with children of today. God I know you sent mothers and fathers as gifts and deemed us salt of the earth. So are our children too. But I don’t understand why they do what they do. Sometimes they are in extreme opposition to your opinions and no matter what you do, will place blame on any or everything you do.

When they’re young, we look at them in admiration wishing they would hurry and walk, talk, and grow as we embrace them. Our hearts are overjoyed with this precious life you have given. We come to the conclusion there is nothing we wouldn’t do for them. We make sure there are clothes on their backs, shoes on their feet, a roof over their head, and food to eat. We will go to the ends of the earth and in most cases lay down our life for them. We are willing to make the ultimate sacrifice for them.

We watch them grow over the years as they become adults. We want nothing but the best for them and try our best not to place fault, when things don’t turn out as they want. We stay on our knees in prayer asking you cover them because we want to prepare them for what’s to come. Since we already know what life will throw at them; which will make it that much more difficult to overcome. We cast all our cares upon you concerning them. We know because of your love for each of us, you will protect, guide, and keep them.

We must be careful how we treat our mother. She is a gift from God. There is no need to put blame on everything she does. But choose not to place the same blame on others regardless of what he or she does. This includes the things you do. Because it feels like you are competing with your past and want to prove a point to them and you. Ask yourself, how can everything be wrong with her but there’s nothing wrong with me? When you’re on the outside looking in, you cannot grasp the wrong in things you are doing or take the time to see. But if it is pointed out to you, learn to accept constructive criticism when you’re told of the wrong things you do.

God help me understand, who are these children we profess to love but feel they can’t show the same appreciation or love towards us? Why does it have to be a constant battle between us? What happens when you live each day and pass each other in the wind? You only feel the need to talk or call when you need something. When she calls you don’t answer. Time passes by you text, and they still don’t answer. But can find time to talk to others whether it’s a sister, brother, or a friend. But why is it you choose not to answer the phone most of the time for her? This is confusing.

There are events you take part in that take precedence in your life. But can’t find a moment to call out of the blue and say “I love you” or make the sacrifice. You make it clear no calls can be received at work. But when something requires your attention during this time, you make the sacrifice to get calls at work to make sure everything is fine. Everything has to fit in your schedule according to your plans. But remember, your plans are not God’s plans. God knows and see all you do. And one day when it’s too late, you will reap what you sow all because of you.

Don’t get me wrong, granted there are some good times you share with your children and will cherish the memory. Not every child will do these things even though some will choose to live in misery. There are some children who will go through some things and you will do your best to be there for all of them. There may be one child who you know loves you unconditionally. Every time you speak or hear from them, they will tell you “Mom I love you.” It’s comforting. Mothers are a gift from God. They are treasured memories. I just have to wonder why it is so hard for children to embrace this.

Yes, I confess I have faults. There are some things I don’t always get right. But I can admit my faults and humbly submit to God’s will as I make the sacrifice to make things right. There are times I can be stubborn and will block my own blessing. Yet, when I get angry and choose to refuse help it’s because I feel uncomfortable when I may feel your reaction was unnecessary. When I feel someone is doing something not out of love but out of obligation. I make the decision to refuse help without hesitation. I know it is not the right thing to do. God, please be patient with me. I am working on this too.

In this life, we all have had jobs that either was hard or satisfying. At some point, we enjoyed what we were doing or gave up trying. And sometimes we are given the choice to walk away from it if it is not fulfilling. Or we will keep at it to find success because it is fulfilling. But I find one of the most astute occupations for anyone is being a parent. And I can attest to the fact that the role we are given can be the hardest job ever. It can be even more difficult when children grow up and seem to have various opinions that are in conflict with yours. You chalk it up as a lesson learned. And although some parents will choose to walk away, for others it is not a choice we make. We make the decision to stay.

We age and with aging many things will change. Our body tells us some things aren’t going to operate the same. As believers, we live and we learn. When we come to know God, as we grow and mature we take stride in adapting to changes from lessons we learn. Sometimes we learn hard lessons and decide we don’t want to ever do that again. And then there are times we keep doing the same things over and over again. We fail to learn and get stuck in our old ways. We have trouble adapting and accepting change.

If you think about it, children who grow up will endure the same process. But they may have even a much harder time accepting why we change in the process. Granted they too can get stuck in their ways, but why it is they think it’s acceptable, whether young or old, to do what you used to do and not what you say.

What happened to the old days when children used to say, “Yes ma’am, no sir, excuse me ma’am, how are you today?” What about the times when you made sure a moment didn’t go by without calling Mom or Dad just to say, “I love you” not just today but every day. What about a phone call here or there just to check up on their well-being? Nowadays its cell phones with the option to ignore calls, which I find meaningless. And you can sense when this happens when it goes to voicemail. Or text messages you receive only when they need a favor. Or they tell you, “You have a phone just as I do. Why do I always have to be the one to call you?’ Or “I’m busy, don’t call me at work but you can call me later.” Yet, if something arises at work that they need to get done, they will call you sooner rather than later.

Respect, where did it go? Sadly, it has gone out the window. The only thing we can do is accept what God presents to us in that circumstance and be thankful for the blessing. From the test, learn the lesson. My advice, take this lesson with you. And remember this in all you do. God requires you obey your parents while you are under their care, but it is your responsibility to honor your parents for life. “Children, obey your parents in the Lord, for this is right. “Honor your father and mother – which is the first commandment with a promise – that it may go well with you and that you may enjoy long life on the earth.” (Eph 6:1-3). This is God’s promise.

Mothers whoever you are and children too, this one is for you. Remember, God loves each and every one of you.

Be blessed! -JD

Exodus 20:12 “Honor your father and your mother, so that your may live long in the land the Lord your God is giving you.” (NIV)

20:12 notes:  “This is the first commandment with a promise attached. What does it mean to “honor” parents? Partly, it means speaking well of them and politely to them. It also means acting in a way that shows them courtesy and respect (but not to obey them if this means disobedience to God). It means following their teaching and example of putting God first. Parents have a special place in God’s sight. Even those who find it difficult to get along with their parents are still commanded to honor them.”

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It All Will Work For the Greater Good

There are people who may try to do what you do. They may even try to imitate you. But they can’t take away what God has for you. There are some that may be working against you. God knows and sees everything. What he has for you is for you.

Be careful who you share your dreams with. You can’t tell everybody everything about yourself. You must keep some things to yourself. Not everybody will celebrate you. You can’t share your dreams with everybody else. Trust God. His purpose will manifest and speak for itself.

When thinking about the issue of trust, I am reminded of an incident that occurred some years ago where I proposed, I thought was a great idea for the department I worked in. I felt the development of a quality assurance process would be beneficial and would help minimize errors and decrease losses in the department while increasing accuracies to the workflow.

After talking with another colleague and mentioning my idea, we managed to put together a proposal to submit to upper management. Well, as it turns out, they rejected the idea and gave lack of funding as reason for the denial. To my surprise, I later learned my supervisor took the idea to management and proposed it as his own. My name was never mentioned. Yet, God still covered me and exposed the true nature of the person I thought could be trusted.

I try not to judge people. I also am a pretty good judge of character. My downfall though is I believe everyone has the ability to do good acts. And everyone should work to do right all the time. I am naïve when it comes to right and wrong. I imagine we all have some small radar inside that signals us to know the difference between the two and we will do what’s right not when necessary but because we should. But that’s just me.

When I hear of incidents in the news where people commit unconscionable acts, my first instinct is disbelief. I cannot believe someone would do something like that. I cannot imagine a person doing such a thing without knowing it was the wrong thing to do.

I’m reminded of the story of what happened to Joseph when he shared his dreams with his brothers. They were jealous of him, turned on him, and stripped him of his coat. But that didn’t take away his integrity. God knew what he had already prepared for him. God was with him. His purpose was fulfilled through him.

In spite of his brothers working against him as the enemy, who tried to kill his dreams, he overcame. Although he may have suffered and had some struggles, God’s plan was greater in the end. Joseph forgave his brothers. God’s purpose was served in the end. For God, he did great things. He used Joseph as the vessel to carry out his will. His dreams were carried out in spite of them. God gave Joseph the gift to interpret dreams but it was not the dreams that helped Joseph interpret its meaning. It was his knowledge of God. God set him up to fulfill his dreams. It was all God.

Even at my age I am still learning how to not be so naïve, just as Joseph who was too. I know the difference between discerning and judging others. I have love for all my sisters and brothers. I’ve always been one to share my goals and aspirations with others. I hardly ever think about the motives or intentions of them. I try to think in terms of good things about them. God also gives me discernment. No matter what or regardless of their intent, I know in the end it won’t stop God’s intent. What God has for me is for me. No one or nothing can ever take it away from me. Just as he has for me, he has for you. No one can stop the plans God has for you.

I heard this from my Bishop at church today and it serves as confirmation of the words I’ve chosen to share today. “God has a gift that isn’t just for me here locally, but for the nation. He will make me great to the nations. And he will bless me. He will bless those who bless me, help those who help me. He will curse those who curse me, and punish those who hurt me.” I will be what God has called me to be. God’s purpose will manifest through me.

Most importantly, I’ve learned that opportunities may come when we least expect them. We must be prepared for the unexpected. Yet sometimes we aren’t, especially when we think we are. We must make sure we have the right relationship with God. When opportunities come don’t miss or misinterpret them; be ready. Stay close to God. Be ready!

And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose (Rom 8:28 KJV).

What man meant for evil, God meant for good. No matter the situation or what others think or do. It all will work for the greater good.

Be blessed! -JD

1 Corinthians 12:7-9: 11 “Now to each one the manifestation of the Spirit is given for the common good. 8To one there is given through the Spirit the message of wisdom, to another the message of knowledge by means of the Spirit, 9to another faith by the same Spirit, to another gifts of healing by that one Spirit,… 11All these are the work of and the same Spirit, and he gives them to each one, just as he determines.” (NIV)

“The greater the gifts are, the more the possessor is exposed to temptations, and the larger is the measure of grace needed to keep him humble and spiritual; and he will meet with more painful experiences and humble dispensations. We have little cause to glory in any gifts bestowed on us or to despise those who have them not.” – (Taken from Matthew Henry’s Concise Commentary athttp://biblehub.com/1_corinthians/12-7.htm)

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Aren’t You Glad God Knows You!

Lone Oak TreeDon’t allow the very thing you let rob you of your future, come back to haunt you from your past in your present. Let it go. Let God. Leave it in the past.

Complacency has always been one of many areas I struggle with in my life. I live in a box where if one thing around me changes, I get stuck staying with that one thing in my refusal to look outside the box of potential advancement where that one thing would lead me. In other words, I close myself off to anything that will require extra work to advance. I become comfortable where I find myself after taking the first step and make the decision to only take the second step if it is easy. Thus, giving up the potential of what’s to come.

I’ve learned through my experiences and something my daughter told me a few months ago that anything worth having won’t be easy and will take hard work. Meaning there will be some challenges that will require an effort on my part.

So, I took that as a lesson learned and am working to let go of complacency and comfortableness. And learn to be open to change and challenges. I say, “When God speaks, listen. You may hear a small whisper. That’s his voice you hear. Listen. Otherwise, he will send someone to advise you of the very thing he tried to tell you, when you chose not to listen.”

When you’re in darkness, Satan is content. He knows what he can use against you to gain victory. Don’t give in. Put on the armor of God. Stand. You’ll have victory. With God, you will win.

After looking at and thinking on these things, I designed a Monday Mantra Memo that says, “Don’t chase something that is not chasing you. Dream chasers follow dreams in pursuit; of excellence. Follow your dreams. Follow that which affords you to become the best you. Become great just as God designed you.”

God gave you many gifts. The greatest gift he gave was Himself to you. He gave you life. There’s no excuse. You now have something to give back to him. The greatest gift you can give to him is you. Use your gifts wisely. Do what he’s called you to do. Glorify God.  Don’t become complacent. Serve him in all you do.

Don’t look to man in the process. Look to God. Don’t miss him in the process. It’s all God. For it is not people who will elevate you. God elevates you.

God knows and is with me. He is always thinking of me. If I were to count how much He thinks of me, I would not be able to keep record of it. Therefore, if he can think that much of me, I can’t help but to glorify him in it. As I think of all the wonderful things he’s done for me. I will not become complacent and miss the opportunity. To serve God with the gifts he’s given me. I will honor him in all my doings to please him. Glory!

Aren’t you glad God knows you! I Am!

Be blessed! –JD

Psalm 139:17-18 “How precious to me are your thoughts, God! How vast is the sum of them! 18Were I to count them, they would outnumber the grains of sand– when I awake, I am still with you.” (NIV)

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Inspiration for Today

Don’t worry or fret.
God is not through with you yet.
Don’t be consumed by strife.
God has a great plan for your life.

Walk in your calling.
With God confidence and tenacity.
Be strong willed, determined.
Walk in your destiny.

Don’t let nothing or no one take you off course.
God is your pilot. He will steer you on course.
Be the best you can be.
God promised you great things.
Go get your blessing!

Have a blessed day in the Lord!

Be blessed! -JD

Ephesians 2:10 “For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand, that we should walk in them.”

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Do You Believe in Miracles?

Foster Bible Pictures 0064-1 The Water Came on...

Foster Bible Pictures 0064-1 The Water Came on Pharaoh and His Soldiers (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

I don’t believe in luck. I believe in God’s miracles. God’s miracles are above and supersede the natural. Miracles are performed by God. God’s power is supernatural.

The Bible tells us of many miraculous events. There were mountains on the side where the Israelites seemed to be stuck. God parted the Red Sea. God’s miracle stopped Pharaoh and his Egyptian army. The Israelites made it safely to the other side. The chariots and horses with Pharaoh and his Egyptian army died.

Pharaoh didn’t believe in God’s miracles. He refused to believe in God’s word and his power. His heart was hardened. God performed a miracle. The Israelites were released from bondage. They were freed. The hardening of Pharaoh’s heart supplied the way for Hebrew’s Exodus. Indeed.

There was the burning bush. God told Moses to speak to the rock and water will pour out of it. Moses, even though he was disobedient, struck the rock twice and water poured from it. Jesus took two fish and five loaves of bread. More than 5,000 mouths were fed. God raised Jesus Christ from the dead. What more needs to be said? This is just a small sample of the miracles God performed. I could go on and on. The Bible speaks of many. What more evidence do we need to believe in God’s miracles?

Miracles are not by chance nor by our will. God uses miracles to bring about his will. God performs miracles to meet human needs for his glory. It establishes the basis of revelation taught throughout Scripture to reveal God’s glory.

Miracles are performed by and originated from God. The most profound miracle is that of creation by God. He is above all things in creation of the world. It is by his power miracles happen in this world. He is the Creator. He makes all things possible. God is over and above all things natural.

We may not see God’s miracles performed today. That can be because we either may choose to ignore them or not believe in them anyway. God does still perform miracles every day.

God performed the greatest miracle. He sent his one and only Son. Who came to the earth as a man and died on the cross for us. The miracle of salvation is all the belief we need. Through faith in Jesus Christ; believe.

I don’t believe in luck. I believe in the miracles of the Bible. God performed wondrous works according to the Bible. Speak of miracles. Acknowledge God, not the instrument who performed the miracle. Remember, God and only God perform miracles.

Do you believe in miracles? When you think of all the miraculous events performed by God, how can you not believe in the miracles of God?

Be blessed! –JD

John 11:40-42 “Jesus said to her, ‘Did I not tell you that if you believed you would see the glory of God?”’  41 So they took away the stone. And Jesus lifted up his eyes and said, “Father, I thank you that you have heard me. 42I knew that you always hear me, but I said this on account of the people standing around, that they may believe you sent me.” (ESV)

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Don’t Settle for “Good Enough”… Settle for God’s Best

Social media has become the catalyst upon which some have made the crucial decision to build a foundation in search of fame, fortune, and success. While there are some who use the same platform to honor God in the process.

I often hear about people who have become so addicted to Facebook, Twitter, Google+, Tumblr, and even WordPress, to name a few, that they will start the morning off by reaching for their phones looking to see activity before they even get out of bed. And I must be honest, for the most part, this was me. With the exception I would pray, give thanks, and talk to God before getting out of bed and/or reaching for my phone.

I found myself becoming so consumed with the networks that I felt I couldn’t live without knowing who liked, favorited, responded, retweeted, reblogged, or followed me wherever I existed. It had become a habit that led to a morning ritual. I had to take a step back long before yesterday and examine my motives as to why I’m here, coming to the realization that this is not what God intended nor was it what I intended when first seeking out the platforms I chose to engage in. With the help of God, I decided to change some things.

All was going well until yesterday that struck home, where briefly I was having “a moment” after looking at my visitor views on WordPress and noticed in the past few days how much my numbers had decreased. My first thought was “What’s going on?” I began to question myself asking whether I had done something wrong. Wondering why did it suddenly cease. I even began to question whether I was fulfilling my initial obligation to God, while reasoning why I’m here in the first place; to serve God. I took it even further and called my sister friend seeking advice, to validate my illicit behavior and thought. That ended with an inquiry to the WP forum to see if there was a problem with the stats.

It was not until I woke this morning I felt dimwitted. After prayer and meditation I was convicted in my spirit. I felt I needed to confess to God my guilt. After reading the WP response to my inquiry, to be honest, I felt silly. I had to take a step back. In that moment I had to re-evaluate my behavior and asked God to forgive me in areas where I began to slack. I lost focus on the right things and began to focus on the wrong things.

I said, “God, I know that it is by your doing that I am here wherever I am. I must not allow social media or any other thing take precedence. I’ve been called to serve God’s purpose and share encouraging messages as I work to inspire and motivate. I mustn’t take my eyes off the prize while I wait. It was never my intention to become proud and rely on the response of man to deny glory to you and not fulfill your intended purpose in all I do.”

I talked to Him and said, “I am becoming reckless in certain areas of my life Lord and I need your help.” I told him, even though he already knew, “The last few weeks I was doing well. I had established balance and minimized my activity on all platforms to make sure it did not become a priority over you. Nor did I allow them to take precedence over you. I admit, I need to get in the right standing. I need to refocus my attention and priority. I accept responsibility. I will do my best. I will be consistent. I won’t settle for less.” Thank you, God for listening.

God is truly blessing me. He has given me a new vision for a design project started long ago that marks my new beginning. God has opened doors leading to new possibilities. He’s blessing me with new opportunities. God is guiding me every step of the way. I am thankful to God for imparting wisdom. This is my declaration today. May it inspire, should you find yourself in the same place.

With social media, there will be some people you know. And there will be some you personally don’t know. Don’t let social media become your first priority. Let your words and motives be a reflection of who you are in Christ Jesus. Sow good seeds into the life of others. As a believer, use the platform to rightfully spread God’s message. Give sound, spiritual advice. Don’t get caught up or become addicted to social media as a means to an end, only to live an unfulfilled life. Don’t change your original perspective or intent. If you lose focus, reflect, redirect and come back to it. If necessary, change the climate.

Honor God. Make him your one and only priority. Spend waking moments in meditation, prayer, and worship. Glorify Him. Don’t become consumed with likes, favorites, followers, shares, or views just because. In the end it won’t matter if you’re doing it for yourself and not God.

God desires our complete trust and worship. Surrender your all to Him. Don’t allow any man, woman, or thing to come before Him. Do what pleases him.

Don’t settle for “good enough.” Settle for God’s best. God is not through with you yet.

Be blessed! -JD

1 John 3:21-22 “Dear friends, if we don’t feel guilty, we can come to God with bold confidence. 22 And we will receive from him whatever we ask because we obey him and do the things that please him.” (NLT)

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Designed for Greatness

This is a poem my youngest daughter wrote in the wee hours of the morning today and sent to me for inspiration. Letting me know God designed me for greatness.

I couldn’t help but share. You are designed for greatness. I hope it will inspire you as well.

  Designed for Greatness

You are a great creature
Designed for great things
You were created in His image
So why wouldn’t you be?

His love for you is infinite
And although this you cannot see
He shows you every day
By giving you chances to be

Dreams, hopes, and aspirations
Is what he has for you
But he cannot do all the work
Your part you must contribute

You are a great creature
Designed for many things
Born with all the same
But living in different ways

The playing ground is even
Although some wouldn’t say the same
Contrary to belief, his plan for you is clear
Almost at the finish line, do not stop here

                                                                                     By K Thomas

Be blessed! -JD

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Be Grateful for Your Afflictions

I was looking for something the other day after dwelling in thought on God’s awesome wonder and came across another diary that hid my most intimate thoughts. I noticed that most of the writings were done at a time in the wee hours of the morning as I talked with God and expressed despair and hurt because of pain I had suffered as I found myself in a state of brokenness.

What surprised me was a statement I made where a voice called out to me between 1:00 am and 3:00 am in the morning as I distinctly heard someone call my name. I sat up, after dozing off and crying for what seemed like forever, and looked around the room only to find no one was there. A few seconds later, the voice called my name again and told me, “Trust me in all thy ways and all will be given unto you.” I was dazed and confused as I looked around the room only to find again that no one was there. But what I was certain of is that someone was trying to get my attention and needed to reassure me that everything was going to be alright.

Two hours later after falling asleep and waking up again, I began to talk to God and profess my troubles and the pain I felt because of the struggle I had with feeling abandoned at a critical time in my life. I had a hard time accepting a decision that drastically changed my life not understanding the depth of how it would impact my future. I told God I didn’t understand why this happened to me and asked him why I was going through what I clearly felt I didn’t deserve it. Little did I realize God would send people I call intercessors to confirm and reveal the very things he needed me to see and face in what seemed like a horrific tragedy, assuring me it would work out for a greater good.

I still couldn’t see it. Later that day I cried on my mother’s shoulder for what seemed like hours and all I could hear were these words, “Daughter, stand still and let God have control. God will never leave or forsake you and would never give you more than you can bear.” She reminded me of the strength God had given me in his strength to get through every struggle I faced even when I couldn’t see it. He knew how strong I was and that whatever he was taking me through would be for his good, for his purpose.

The following day I received further confirmation from a sister friend who revealed God had chosen me to perform a special work but in order to do so, he needed to get my attention in areas I may have not yet developed because I was focusing so much attention on a priority that should not have been a priority in the first place, forgetting to keep God as the priority. She told me, “God is trying to open your eyes to the fact that you must depend totally on Him for everything, be faithful in all you do, and go to him with a pure heart.”

I listened carefully to her and couldn’t help but express my confused state of mind and lack of understanding with the troubled circumstances I faced as it concerned my health, the loss of a job, and challenges because of life changes. She said, “Ask God for revelation to the things you struggle with in all areas of your life and he will show you what to do to bring clarity and closure.” She, too, reminded me that God knows how strong I am and as a child of God, he desires to strengthen me in areas where I’m weak and areas that I am blind that I may increase my faith in Him and develop a greater trust in him regardless of the troubles I faced.

The final revelation came when my cousin called and not only confirmed what my mother and sister friend said but added validation and affirmation to what God needed me to know. She said, “When God calls you or chooses you to do a work for him, it is not going to be easy. Many are called but few are chosen and you have been chosen. You have been highly favored.” All I could do was cry and at the same time thank her for the words of encouragement, inspiration, and revelation. I understood that God was speaking to me through them to reveal the plans he had for me. And in my dream, I now realize it was him calling me even though I couldn’t see anyone in the room, the small whisper was evidence.

I took their advice and took their words to heart. I made a commitment to God. I promised myself to seek God’s Word daily and faithfully, and to search my heart earnestly. Look to him and not to man for help, for my provision. And understand in the end, it would work for the greater good of those that are called by the Lord according to his purpose.

When it was all said and done, before the night was over, I prayed and asked God for these things specifically. I prayed for clarity. I asked that he give me a revelation to clear confusion. Speak to me that I may know how to better serve him. Although the pain was so deep and was fresh that hurt to the core, it would eventually fade away that I may delight in Him. I thanked him for listening. I fell asleep in peace.

And today, I am at peace. It may have taken me a long time to get it right. God is doing great things in my life. Now I understand just how much God loves me. I may have gone through what seemed like extreme troubled waters and a multitude of disasters which seemed like eternity. But God knew how he would fulfill his purpose through me. His plan was better. My life has taken a turn for the better. I am stronger, wiser, better.

While I couldn’t see the things my family and friends pointed out to me at that time, I learned God needed to be my priority all the time. I’m grateful for my afflictions because in the face of adversity, God would get the glory. I learned a valuable lesson and knew it was by God’s grace I’m still standing. I give God all the praise and glory!

I am grateful to God for godly women who counsel and provide spiritual advisement to get me on the right track. So that I may clearly understand God has my back. I’m canceling every assignment, putting all the plans, tricks, and devious ways of the enemy on a shelf. They will rot and dry out like dry bones because my God is a present help. In my times of trouble, he was there for me. Even in my brokenness when I couldn’t see. It was through my afflictions, God refined me in order that I may become a better person. He needed to bring me to a place, to rid me of all things that distracted me from the promise and his purpose. In the midst of my troubles when I thought he abandoned me and was not there. All the time he was there.

We are not perfect. God will perfect us. There is a purpose for everything God does. When we are helpless, God strengthens us. God will test us. Even in brokenness, He will refine us. Trials will come. We will face many. There will be testing in the face of adversity. Testing of your faith develops perseverance. Let perseverance finish its work that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything (James 1:3-4).

Be grateful for your afflictions. It is not a curse. Consider it a blessing. It could have been worse. God’s purpose is his promise. Through testing, He will strengthen you in your affliction. God will remove your imperfections. God will refine you. You will become a better person. Serve Him with the gifts he created in you in spite of imperfections. God knows the plans he has for you. Persevere. He will reward you.

Be blessed! -JD

Psalm 66:10-12 “For you, O God, have tested us; you have tried us as silver is tried. 11 You brought us into the net; you laid a crushing burden on our backs; 12 you let men ride over our heads; we went through fire and through water; yet you have brought us out to a place of abundance.” (ESV)

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Trust God’s Sovereign Will

MP900182538God is able to do exceedingly and abundantly above all you could ever think or ask. He will give you the desires of your heart if you honestly seek him when you ask.

We may feel overwhelmed when a situation seems humanly impossible. God makes all things possible. Trouble doesn’t last always. Don’t underestimate God’s power. He’s all knowing. He’s Sovereign. He’ll show you the way out. He’ll work it out. With God we can overcome. It’s already done.

Let your focus be on God today. Concentrate on his power, even when you can’t see through troubles you face. Trust God. He has all power. That’s all he needs. He will meet your every need. His will is sovereign.

Be happy for others. Don’t desire what they have; even if you don’t have what they have. Be content. Be grateful to God believing because of his grace, all that you have is a blessing.

When God opens one door, he closes another. When he births something inside you, you don’t need validation from others. God will see you through the process. Deliverance is yours because of his Divine Providence.

Oftentimes we confuse our own desires with God’s will. Don’t confuse your will with God’s will. If things turn out in your favor but are contrary to what the Word says, it may have happened because of what you wanted and not what God said.

When you do or ask God for something in any given situation, you will know what God’s will is without hesitation. If what you ask will glorify God and build the kingdom, you won’t need any explanation. It will help you grow spiritually. It will not be something that goes against what the Bible forbids. Nor will you do it unwillingly. You won’t have to wonder, if it is unrighteous. When it concerns the will of God, it is righteous.

Moreover, if God doesn’t give you what you ask for, it may be that it’s not his will for you to have it. However, it could also mean that you may need to wait longer to have it. God does not give us specific information or direct answers to what he will do. He requires we make the right choices in whatever we do.

“Delight yourself in the Lord and he will give you the desires of your heart (Psalm 37:4).” Commit your ways to him and he will give you the desires of your heart. Because God’s will is good and perfect and will not deviate from what his Word says. It won’t change. He will do what he says.

Do as God desires, make the decision to not sin or resist His will. Make choices that are appropriate. Choices that are in agreement with his will. Walk closely with the Lord to do as he desires. Let his will be your will in what he desires.

God is able to do exceedingly and abundantly above all we could ever ask or think. He will place his desires on our heart when we walk closely with him. If what you desire can be of benefit and the Bible does not speak against it, this is your answer to make the right decisions. Follow your heart in it.

Renew your mind. Don’t conform to this world. You then will be able to test God’s will by his Word. Humble yourself in spirit. Truly seek God in all you do. God will reveal His will to you.

God’s Word instructs and guides us. He surrounds us with godly wisdom to make it through any season. He sends prayer warriors to pray for us for unknown reasons. God desires to impart in us, the fruit of the spirit to begin the process to mold us, in the image of his Son. The fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control (Galatians 5:22, 23). It will transform you. Let His will, not your will, be done.

Be blessed! -JD

John 15:3, 4 “Already you are clean because of the word that I have spoken to you. 4 Abide in me, and I in you. As the branch cannot bear fruit by itself, unless it abides in the vine, neither can you, unless you abide in me.” (ESV)

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Happy National Girlfriends Day!

Celebrate the many connections you’ve made with women around the world in honor of this day. There are many who may have influenced your life for the better not just today but on any given day.

Then there are friends who are a source of inspiration that are there for you whenever. And will have your back when you meet with storms in times of trouble and stormy weather.

Appreciate those who motivate and celebrate you in spite of you. Show love even to those who don’t celebrate you because in spite of, they need love too. There are even ones who work to empower you in their commitment and dedication. And will be a source of support to help you reach your fullest potential that you may arrive safely to your destination.

Today is not a day to honor just one person, but many. Cherish long-lasting or short-lived friendships that bind you together as women. In some way we all have managed to form a circle of trust to enrich the lives of one another. We’ve changed the world in the sharing of love and knowledge for the betterment of all our sisters and brothers.

Godly connections are most valuable too. Wise counsel, sound advice from true girlfriends will speak truth in love and won’t ever say things to hurt you. But instead will build you up with words of inspiration and encouragement to guide you. They will support you even when you make mistakes. The respect you will have for one another. What a difference it will make.

What comes out of their mouth sometimes can be for your own good. Even when you don’t want to hear it, they will speak out of love. They will listen to understand and will speak to be understood. And will agree to disagree for the sake of sisterhood. They will love you, flaws and all, and will be there for you. To pick you up or catch you when you fall because they care about you.

Quality, sincere friendships are hard to come by and can take a long time to develop. When nurtured, lasting friendships and strong connections will last forever.

Spend some quality time with all the special women friends in your circle of trust. Find a way to connect who those who may be separated by distance. It is a must. Spend some quality phone time. Make a special call to let them know you’re thinking of them today. Call even if it’s to briefly say “I love you,” from miles away.

Remember the lives of girlfriends or friends you may have lost and loved ones who have passed away. Cherish their memory when thinking of happy times and the many things you may have shared on this day.

And now I will leave you with these words as I say, Happy National Girlfriends Day!

Girl power is in full effect! In honor of National Girlfriends Day, women across the world are now calling all mentors, world changers, those who persevered, triumphed, and paved the way. And we mustn’t forget to show love for our “best-est” BFF girlfriends today.

Make today special. Share a kind word or gesture. Be thankful for your “best friend, girlfriend,” circle of trust friends, and special connections. Call; send a text; or an Instagram; or an email; power up Skype to commemorate today’s special event. Let this be a new day of new beginnings. Make new friends. Relinquish grudges, bitterness, or resentment.

Make godly connections. Share with others one of your favorite expressions. You don’t know how much it will mean in the life of someone who may be hurting or could be going through. Send virtual hugs. Make a difference.  Live in the overflow of God’s love. Let your light shine through.

In honor of this special day, I am sending lots of huge hugs and warm kisses to my closest and dearest BFFs, girlfriends, sister friends who are near and far away. I may not be in your presence physically or daily, but I am here in spirit and love each of you dearly not just today but every day. I salute you and wish you a very happy National Girlfriends Day!

Be blessed! -JD

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