Should you be praying or Acting in Faith?

Time passes by very quickly, the birthdays, the graduations; oh how time flies. We all have the same amount of time at our disposal. However, some of us waste it terribly and regrettably so. Time wasted cannot be regained. I believe you have heard this saying before.

I wish to remind us to “Act”. Sometimes we have no reason to wait, to sit and to do nothing. All that is necessary now, is to take action. Remember we are given gifts and resources and it is not for us to be selfish with it but to impact the world positively. For the believer, it is for building the Church of God, the Kingdom of God.

It is wearying to see us labour in prayer, doubting God, looking for a sign from heaven, when all we need to do is take that first step, second step or that next step in faith, understanding that you are alive now and can only act while you are alive. Someone’s life is going to be better because of your willingness and discipline to ACT.

Work against your doubts, act against your fear, move against the ungodly tide, take responsibility for that gift you have been given and ACT.

Go speak to Dad and let him know you have forgiven him, go speak to your boss and share your interest in the new position, stop procrastinating on sharing Christ with that co-worker, stop putting off your quiet time with God and His Word, start that book, start working on that business idea, start working on that ministry……just ACT. Act now, before there is no more time left.

PURSUE PURPOSE!

Scanning the Psalms – Part III

As I read Psalm chapter three, focusing on verse six, I began to empathize with the Psalmist, David. Friends, the children of God have been going through “hell” from the very beginning. David’s daughter was raped by her brother, his own blood (Absalom) came up against him to try to take over the kingdom and his enemies were real men and women with swords. I wish to add that David committed some sins against God that often makes me wonder, how a man of God’s own heart can stoop so low. However, that’s another topic! Today, I am just considering that David went through a lot. Just as you and I do, we all experience rough times.

I mentioned earlier that I read the entire chapter, but my focus was verse six. It says – “I laid me down and slept; I awaked; for the Lord sustained me.”
This was my take-away from this verse. In my mind, if David, who had men with swords seeking for his life could say this, I can. If David, who had to flee his own Kingdom for his safety, because his own men were turning against him, I can. If David, as a youth, was attacked by a trusted adult who wanted to kill him as a result of jealousy, I can. If David, could grieve God’s heart so deeply and still rise up to enjoy his protection, I can.

David demonstrated a faith in God that was unshakable, unmovable and worthwhile.

He said “I laid me down and slept”. This speaks of peace of mind and confidence that everything will be ok, even as he sleeps. Then he says ” I awaked; for the Lord sustained me”. As a result of his confidence and trust in God, he awoke as he expected, feeling satisfied having slept in God’s promises. He immediately acknowledges that it was God who kept him through the night.
I love this commentary by Albert Barnes, it says;
“For the Lord sustained me – He kept me from danger; he preserved me from death. And it is as true now as it was then, that God is the supporter of life when men sleep. He guards us; he causes the action of the heart to be continued as it propels the blood through our frame; he secures the gentle heaving of the lungs, both when we slumber and when we wake.”

For each of us our circumstances are different or challenges vary. But, we can all identify with the need to comfortably sleep at nights knowing that God will keep us safe. I acknowledge that some of you reading this article have not enjoyed such rest because you may be living in fear, guilt, bitterness and regrets or maybe your experiences have lead you to hate God. Once you learn to let these emotions go, your faith in God and His ability to give you true and complete rest would grow.

Featured picture: Grenada Craft Centre – Located just out of Kirani James Boulevard into Port Highway, St. George’s, Grenada.

Scanning the Psalms – Part II

Psalm one is really a simple comparison between the man seeking to walk uprightly and the man who wants nothing to do with God.

Let’s look at the differences:

The Upright

Finds pleasure in reading and studying God’s word.

Bears good, wholesome and healthy fruit.

Anything good he does is likely to be successful.

He is firmly planted and his roots run deep.

When being judged, God will be pleased with him.

The Ungodly

Has no interest in the Word of God; does not respect it.

He may seem to prosper but does not enjoy good success. He “prospers” at the expense of others.

His life of disrespect towards God is marred with pain and regret.

He is like a chaff easily blown away by the wind.

If he does not repent, when being judged God will sadly condemn him.

Now, even in preparing this comparison when I got to number five, I felt a bit uncomfortable.   No one likes to speak of judgement and condemnation.   But then what do you do if the Word of God speaks of it?  Compromise?    It is better to say it as it is, well at least if you want to be called put God first.   It does not mean that you are “speaking the hate language”, it is simply that you hold God’s word above anything else. 

The Word of God contains lots of positives, many passages speaks of his protection, his love, his forgiveness and his grace and it is much easier to accept.   But we must understand that the God of Love is also holy and cannot tolerate sin.  His grace extends to all, but we must expect that if we continuously reject his Grace, there will be consequences.  You see his Grace is that space he gives us to repent and submit to his ways.  Remember though, that it’s our choice to submit to his authority or not to submit, but choosing the latter comes with serious negative consequences.

MY PRAYER:   I pray that anyone who is living a life against God’s principles and guidance would realize that they are travelling a dangerous road and sense his overwhelming love drawing them to his side. I pray they would desire to taste of His everlasting water and abundant life.  I pray that they would truly drink from the well that never runs dry.  IN JESUS NAME, AMEN!

Wish I can speak about God’s love and grace only, but I can’t!  Psalm Chapter one is the Reason!

Featured Picture taken by InspireMe – The Lagoon – Kirani Boulevard, St. George’s. Great place to chill!

Am I scornful? Do I take the things of God lightly? Part I

Please enjoy this journey with me as I scan through the Psalms and share snippets of the well written poetic pieces inspired by God himself. Because I love photography so much, I would crown each post with a lovely picture of my homeland, Grenada.

The goal here is to remind us that the Word of God is beautiful, exciting and still true, still relevant and necessary for good success. We all have great dreams but what are great dreams without the purest of knowledge and wisdom?

So let’s begin chroming the Psalms. Today, when I woke up I felt a spark of excitement as I reached for my big black bible. Yes, It was another heavenly idea strolling my way: “I am going to scan through the book of Psalms and look for truths that would remind me of how precious this Book is!”
I reached for my B.I.B.L.E and started at the start, the very beginning! Psalm Chapter 1. It has been a while since I read Psalm Chapter one; such a great Psalm. Thinking about it, it is quite poetic!

Psalm Chapter 1:
God’s word says I am blessed just because I decide to discipline myself by rejecting ungodly advice; advice that is questionable, advice that is contrary to God’s instructions, advice that would lead me outside of God’s plan for my life. I am blessed just trying to be wise! Here is verse 1:

“Blessed is the man that walketh not in the counsel of the ungodly nor standeth in the way of sinners, nor sitteth in the seat of the scornful.”

I researched the word “scornful” before, but my memory needed to be refreshed so I checked it out again. Then I realised, I didn’t want to stop researching the word, but I needed to get ready for work.

Nevertheless the scornful represents someone who rejects God’s authority, scoffs at godly truths, practices and principles. The Scorner makes light of the things of God and the people of God. If we associate too much with the scornful or the scorner, we can be negatively influenced and begin to take God and his principles lightly as well. Imagine you claim to love God and you are sitting with your “friends” sharing demeaning jokes about his servants, about his church and about his work? Scary, right? But it can be easily done.
Sometimes we think we are so liberated and educated that we become puffed up and begin to look down on the faithful, the upright and the man or woman who is still willing to talk about Jesus!
So here is the question? Are you walking or listening to wise counsel, drawing your boundary lines so that you are not influenced by the Scornful?

Featured picture: True Blue Bay Resort – overlooking the St. George’s University, True Blue, St. George.

Worship Expressions

Psalm 145 verses 1 & 2:

“I will extol thee, my God, O King; and I will bless thy name for ever and ever. Every day will I bless thee; and I will praise thy name for ever and ever.”

I think of you every day, I think of you when I awake, as I am engaged in my daily duties, in those moments when I feel overwhelmed and in those moments when I am soberly in control of my thoughts.

Daily, my hand reaches out to you, desiring your attention, your blessings, your wisdom.

My desire, like the Psalmist David, is to bless you everyday. I want to know, without a doubt, that my heart is pursuing you as a Deer pursue’s water in a dry land.

Sometimes, I think life is so unfair, corrupt and complicated, but then I remember you and there is that safe place, there is that safe place when I lay down my burdens and I look up to your face.

“Everyday” speaks of discipline, loyalty, commitment and true adoration. That’s what you deserve, all the Glory, all the Honour, all the WORSHIP, DAILY!

Faith affirmations for personal transitions

It was April 15th, 1991, I stepped into my current employer’s office ready to start my first day on the job.  It was my second real job after College.  The doors of the Grenada Development Bank opened to me in so many ways.  I did not know then what I know now, I was green, not even twenty yet, a bit naive but eager to excel.  I count it a great blessing to be employed consistently at the same place for such a long time; I have heard others talk about experiencing depression as a result of not being able to find a job for up to one year or suddenly losing the one they had.  In some cases these persons were treated unfairly by their former employers.  This was not my experienced, God blessed me with economical stability.

Twenty-seven years later and I am exiting the place I spent thousands of hours, the place where I dedicated most of my work life.  Yes, I am moving on, transitioning from one job to another.  I have been there for so long, it feels strange to leave.   I feel so indebted, grateful, touched, honoured and so much more, to have been part of this Institution’s amazing journey through life, 20 years plus.  After being a part of an organisation’s transformation from a doubtful future to bright hopes and vision, I cannot be any less but grateful.  As an employee moving through the ranks,  I  had great moments, not so great moments and those in between but every experience taught me something valuable.

What warms me the most is the fact that I saw God walk with me through all these years, teaching me how to listen, showing me where I need to develop, drawing me to the company I need to keep and planting in my heart the desire for excellence.   It was a desire that kept my eyes fixed on the fact that my job was a gift from God and He was worthy to receive the recognition for every little bitty witty of success I achieve.  He walked with me and I sought to let him hold my hand and lead me, most of the times.

As I sat on my bed this morning, I felt a bit overwhelmed and disturbed to a lesser extent;  I believe it was a combination of the fact that I need to get a number of tasks completed before I depart and that there is a need to be extra careful about allowing anxiety in others to distort my calm demeanor.  There is an extra urge to allow God to influence my planning, doing and saying; I am concerned about leaving right and leaving tall.  My journey ends at my current work-home on November 9th, 2018.  I need my Lord to continue walking with me.

So this extra thrust is being matched with a desire to lean on the everlasting arms of  God, to rest on his shoulder, and to listen closely to every prompt, every cautionary note, and every empowering word.

In seeking God to take me through the last few days, I received affirming words of faith in my heart and I started to write.  The outcome was six affirmations, all of which are shared below for your encouragement:

  1. He (God) will never leave me, never, never.
  2. I can speak with Him (God) when I want to.
  3. He promises to keep me in a peaceful state when I trust him to work it out.
  4. There is no weapon so powerful that he (God) cannot stop it from harming me.
  5. He (God) promises to give me wisdom, there is no limitation to the amount.
  6. When I need to be comforted He extends his love to remind me that I am His.

These six statements did it for me!   I felt empowered.  You see while they are not actual verses  quoted they all come directly from the Word of God where immense power lies.

Deuteronomy 7:9 “Know therefore that the LORD your God is God, the faithful God  who keeps covenant and steadfast love with those who love him and keep his commandments, to a thousand generations”

These six affirmations are my testimony.  God does it for real friends!

Care to comment, would love if you would share what God’s word means to you.

Everyone should be chasing after God’s peace!

Have you ever noticed how many verses in the Bible speak about Peace?

You see, in order to pursue God’s purpose in your life, you need stability, confidence, a sound mind and a clear vision and healthy relationships.   God’s Peace allows us to have all these and more.

Tap into God’s peace daily by reading and meditating on God’s word and talking to him through-out the day about everything that concerns you.

Here are some verses to get you hooked on God’s peace:

Proverbs 16:7

“When a man’s ways please the Lord, he maketh even his enemies to be at peace with him.”

Psalm 37:11

“But the meek shall inherit the earth; and shall delight themselves in the abundance of peace.”

Psalm 119:165

“Great peace have they which love thy law: and nothing shall offend them.”

Romans 5: 1-5

“Therefore being justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ”

Philippians  4: 6&7

“Be careful for nothing; but in everything by prayer and supplication, with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known unto God.  And the peace of God, which passeth all understanding, shall keep your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus.”

These are just some of the verses that would wake you up and help you realise that choosing a healthy relationship with God has awesome benefits.

Real, lasting, peace can be yours today, but you must be willing to let go of the unhealthy practices, habits and relationships that are feeding you conflict, torment and fear.  Instead embrace God’s word daily and allow him to guide you towards a life of true peace that even when storms arise, you would confidently walk through it, knowing that the Master of the sea is by your side.

You can’t pursue God’s purpose for your life if you do not know his Peace!.

Know God, Know Peace!

Discover a new Song! Song Scouting

I like sharing things that work for me.   Have you ever heard about song scouting?  Well, it’s no big promoted activity, it is simply searching for songs that you never heard before and listening to them for the first time.   I like scouting for songs when I need to relax a bit; when I wish to be refreshed in my spirit, and there is that stir within me to just bask in God’s goodness, on his character and on his promises.  

When I go song scouting, I would listen to a few songs and then, not too long after, I would hit “play” for the last time, because this time, the song I am listening too has caught my attention, some-how it connects with me and my story and my experiences.

Song scouting, is fun, I love the excitement of finding that new song; there is a thrill about it. Many times, it is a song that I can enjoy singing as well, or I can see myself ministering the said song to others. It is also rewarding to go deeper, researching the song and finding out about the Writer, his walk with God, and the story behind the song, I just fell in love with.  Recently, I scouted, and I found “As it is (In Heaven)” by Hillsong.     I love this song very much.  It speaks to me!  It’s now my newest favourite.

Let me say that many of these songs have ministered to me, and I am truly grateful to experience a true free spirit of Worship.   Contemporary worship has really helped me to relate to God on a deeper level that allows me to be broken and intimate at his feet.

Whenever you go song scouting, be sure to listen to the words carefully, try to understand the context or the story line and ask yourself, “Is this song in line with the Word of God?”

Here are the words of my newest favourite.

Verse 1
Whether now or then
Death is not my end
I know heaven waits for me
Though the road seems long
I’ll never walk alone
I’ve got all I need to sing

Pre-Chorus
I know You love me
I know You found me
I know You saved me
And Your grace will never fail me
And while I’m waiting
I’m not waiting
I know heaven lives in me

Verse 2
Should I suffer long
This is not my home
I know heaven waits for me
Though the night is dark
Heaven owns my heart
I’ve got all I need to sing

Chorus
So I will sing like I will there
In the fearless light of glory
Where the darkness cannot find me
And Your face is all I see
I will sing like a man
With no sickness in my body
Like no prison walls can hold me
I will sing like I am free

Bridge 1
I’ll sing holy holy
My heart cries holy
As it is in heaven
It is in me

Bridge 2
We’ll sing holy holy
The earth cries holy
As it is in heaven
So let it be

This song was written by Joel Houston and Ben Fielding.  This is the YouTube link https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=So97pmyDbVw

Joel Houston is the son of Brian and Bobbie Houston, Founders of Hillsong Church.  He is a Song Writer and Pastor.

Ben Fielding is an Australian born worship leader and songwriter. Some of his songs include
“Mighty to Save”, “This I believe”, “God is Able” and “Anchor”.

 

Worship Expressions – Seeking God!

My God, I need you!   I need you desperately!   My soul longs for your presence. Stay close by, Oh Awesome God!  Wrap me in your arms and breathe upon me.

Oh, awesome God, everything I am is because of you, I don’t want to be without you. You are my inspiration, when doubt sneaks up on me, you lovingly whisper in my ear. “When you are  weak, I’ll give you strength.”

My God, oh how I need you!    I need you constantly!  My heart longs for your comfort.  Stay close by, Oh Awesome God! Saturate me with your substance and renew my mind.

Matchless! Supreme! Master! Every minute is deserving of your PRAISE.  I seek to honour you only.

You are my motivation, when lies seek to redefine who you said I am, you lovingly remind me of my value.   You are always there!

I worship you!!

Worship Expressions: A heart like yours

I desperately want to know you more.

My heart is always in need of your fixing,

your melting and your molding.

Could my heart be like your heart?

It’s my desire, so I press on!

Your heart is full of compassion,

unconditional love and patience!

Oh, how I desire to be like you!

I meditate upon my bed and I think

of how good and awesome you are!

You are the Good, Good, Father and we can run to you, day or night.

I am amazed of your love for me.

I shall pursue you, because in you I see everything

that makes me feel complete and fulfilled.

You are enough for me and I praise you and exalt you!

I worship and adore you, bowing my knees before you!

Only you deserve such worship!

King over all, excellence surround you.

You are glorious and mighty; your splendor engulfs me

and I am in awe of your presence.

I seek to know you more, to be like you, my heart, reflecting yours!