“Hole” and “Whole”

April 20, 2020

Word of the day: 7 I was forty years old when Moses, the servant of the Lord, sent me from Kadesh Barnea to explore the land. And I brought him back a report according to my convictions, 8 but my fellow Israelites who went up with me made the hearts of the people melt in fear. I, however, followed the Lord my God wholeheartedly. Joshua 14:7-8 NIV

A hole is a hollow place in a solid body or surface. The whole is in an unbroken or undamaged state; in one piece. Take a moment and think of the difference between hole and whole. Holeheartly is not living to God’s standards. Your soul has a hole that needs fixing. Thinking of yourself and making sure your motives are intact.

Meanwhile, wholeheartedly you are living in God’s standards. You are unselfish, willing to go out the way for others to help. The hole ruins you and your ability to love others. The whole makes you complete. You may not have a lot to give to others; you may feel useless. The important thing is to follow God, and you will be useful to others and love wholeheartedly, instead of holeheartly.

Father, thank you for today. I pray for these two words as it makes a difference. Holeheartly may not be a word in the dictionary, but it can describe a selfish person. Wholeheartedly shows unselfishness. I pray today that people that choose between the two words choose wisely. Thank you for our fellowship. In Jesus’ name. Amen!

One of a Kind

April 18, 2020

Word of the day: 14 There has never been a day like it before or since, a day when the Lord listened to a human being. Surely the Lord was fighting for Israel! Joshua 10:14 NIV

I currently sit here, trying to figure out how to share this correctly. I am anxious; I honestly do not have a reason to be worried. Well, maybe I do when I think about it. I am having a hard time figuring this out, what to say and how to be encouraging saying it. Satan is in my ear, telling me not to do this. So, let’s do this. What one word or phrase that stands out to you in today’s verse? What is this verse saying? The sun stood still, didn’t move. The Bible says this is one of a kind day for Joshua. There may be plenty of people that believe differently based on the miracles in the Bible. There is a specific event for you that is one of a kind day for you. When miracles happen to us, it is God’s intervention. Today, take what God may have with you for your one of a kind day. Think back to what he did for you that was his intervention to allow things to happen, or for you to grow. Give him praise because God is not thinking about impressing leaders of the free world; God is thinking about you and how to get you into his intervention. He is fighting for your heart, your love, and your attention.
Father, thank you for today. I pray today for one of a kind day. Nobody is better than the person you gave that one of a kind day. I pray that people can think back or will recognize the day that your intervention came in for them. Let that day be unique to them. Your response is robust. Thank you for your thoughtfulness, even though we do not deserve your attention. We love you. In Jesus’ name. Amen!

Being Real During Difficult Times

April 17, 2020

Word of the day: 1 Do not be afraid or discouraged. Joshua 8:1 NLT

Let’s start with a word of prayer. Father, you are always good for us. I pray this morning, afternoon, or evening as we read that this will be encouraging instead of depressing. It is hard to talk difficult topics and trying to drive in the significant point behind it. I pray this will lead correctly with love, compassion, and sincerity. In Jesus’ name. Amen!

I pray this for a reason. Today’s verse may say, “not be afraid or discouraged,” but the talking points can be so tricky. Joshua was discouraged after his battle. God reminds him of this verse. Joshua took this advice wholeheartedly and went out to the field of battle and fought like no other. Here is my tricky talking point. We all have discouraging times. With this pandemic, it is impossible to think about how many people can be so discouraged. The epidemic took me back to the Spanish flu in 1918. It was similar to what we are going through right now. This flu attacked everyone, but mainly the age group 15-34 and had the highest death rate. There were no vaccines, no antibodies to attack. Those times were no different than what we are going through now. They had to stay at home, quarantine, social distance themselves. They went through this for two years. It eventually calmed down in December of 1920, according to the CDC website.

Just like Joshua, we do not know the discouragement people faced during those times. God is telling us all, not to be afraid or discouraged. During these times, God wants us to learn something. Confess your sins when God reveals them to you. Refocus on God when you fail and deal with that problem and then move on! These cycle of sin, repentance, and forgiveness is meant to strengthen us, and not make us weak. Use this pandemic to build your strength. Use this time of social distance to practice surrendering to God when you are most vulnerable. God protect us for a reason. Let’s not be bitter at what is going on.

Father, thank you for our fellowship. It can be hard to talk encouragement but throw in hard times to help get this through these difficult times. This pandemic set back a lot of people, and it’s not regular times. We are finding new ways to make a new normal until things get back to normal, and that is if it ever gets back to normal. I pray this can reach everyone with a sincere heart. Thank you for your love. In Jesus’ name. Amen!

Unnecessary Worrying

July 1, 2019

Word of the Day: Therefore I tell you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat or drink; or about your body, what you will wear. Is not life more than food, and the body more than clothes? Matthew 6:25 -NIV

Here is something to think about. One, worrying damages your health. Two, worry can disrupt the thought process. Three, worrying can cause you to be counterproductive. As we all face problems, it is a fact knowing that these three things happen when you worry. Matthew 6:25 reminds us of why we should not bother. Verse 25 should be something to memorize because I worry a lot when I shouldn’t.

Take a moment to think about what drives you to contentment. Most people of the world will say treat yourself as part of pleasure when worrying. For example, treat yourself knowing you can’t have that dessert or unhealthy food you want. People may say do something meaningful that will allow you not to worry about the things ahead of you. Think about what you do to relieve worry. What we do here is spending time with God. Doing this is the perfect solution. During this fast, feeding my soul did me better than eating. It’s good to eat, but it is also the best to dig in God’s word and learn all about him as he gives you the best answers to life. Something your enemy can’t grasp or will not perceive. As you think about this verse today, always remember this; one cross + three nails = four (for) giveness.

Father, you are good. Thank you for this time together. Father, as we come together to start this day, help us to turn to you when our worries get as big as a mountain. I struggle with it every day, but practice not to worry. It is hard a lot of times, but you always come through in the process. We are thankful for you blessing us every day regardless of our issues, our life problems. We give you all the praise, in Jesus name, Amen!

Keeping Your Eyes on the Prize

June 30, 2019

Word of the Day: You will keep in perfect peace those whose minds are steadfast because they trust in you. Isaiah 26:3 -NIV

Take a moment to read the scripture. What does this scripture tell you? Keep your eyes on the prize. Who is the prize? Jesus! When Jesus went through struggling times traveling through bad storms, he kept his eyes on the lighthouse and not the things that would cause him to be distracted. High winds and thunderstorms.

Now take a moment to think about what situation you are currently in that causes you to keep your eyes off the prize. What is distracting you today? What can you do to help yourself to keep focused on the prize? Being consistent can help you keep peace in your life. Stay steadfast in him.

Father, you are good. We need your help today learning the prize and not get distracted at the things that can distract us. We learned that Jesus kept his eyes on the prize at the times he wanted to be distracted. Help us to focus our thoughts on you and not the situation because it seems bigger than what it really is. I thank you for your many blessings and this time together. I give you all the honor and praise, in Jesus name, Amen!

Difficult Seasons in your Life

June 29, 2019

Word of the Day: The Lord makes firm the steps of the one who delights in him; though he may stumble, he will not fall for the Lord upholds him with his hand. Psalm 37:23-24

Everybody will have difficult seasons in their life. Maybe one, two or more. We go through difficult seasons to not live a comfortable life but living to depend on God’s word, his advice. Take a moment and think about how you confront a project you want to do. You research it, find good factual information, ask questions, seek advice, organize your thoughts and then tackle it. If the project fails to satisfy you, you will try again and research something different. This is what God would like for us to do. Research (Bible), ask questions (the wise such as Pastors or trusted Christian friends), seek advice (the wise), organize your thoughts (prayer), and then go for it when God tells you to. Remember our answers do not come in minutes, it comes in miles. Some situations you can get answers in minutes. Seeking advice from our heavenly father takes time and patience as he walks you step by step. I didn’t get to writing devotionals by forcing myself. After putting my undivided attention to God, I believe he was telling me to start a prayer group. As I listened more, he was telling me to do devotionals. It’s been an honor and blessing to get up every morning to learn more about him and share the good news of God!

Father, you are good. Thank you for this time together. As we enjoy our weekend of relaxation and time off work, I pray you will help us recognize & utilize our gifts. I pray that we can be the best for you. You are beautiful in so many amazing ways and I give you all the praise! In Jesus name, Amen!

Be Courageous!

April 14, 2020

Word of the day: 9 Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged; for the Lord, your God will be with you wherever you go.” Joshua 1:9 NIV

When I first started doing devotionals for others that wanted to have the word daily, this is the first verse I came across. The posted date on this is Friday, April 3. The original I wrote was on Friday, June 21, 2019.  There is nothing like an excellent refresher course, especially during this time of panic and social distancing. Take a moment and think about professional athletes or your manager that made all the difference in the world in people’s lives. When they retire, can you imagine the shoes to fill-in? Think about when you start something new, can you imagine the fear you have to start and get going? I began doing blogs on my devotions, that is a tough thing to do when you have a ton of people that are already doing it, have more knowledge and wisdom to be able to share the gospel. Remember that God is always with you, no matter how fearful you are of starting something. Do not be discouraged from doing what the holy spirit is asking of you. Otherwise, you will miss out. God created you to be you; do not be depressed today or any time doing what God asks of you.

Father, thank you for today. These are times where people can easily be discouraged. I pray today that we can be intentional in our thoughts and listen to you when you call us to do what you ask. I pray for wisdom. Thank you for your love and our fellowship time. In Jesus’ name. Amen!

Confessing to God Your Feelings

June 28, 2019

Word of the day: My dear brothers and sisters, take note of this: Everyone should be quick to listen, slow to speak and slow to become angry because human anger does not produce the righteousness that God desires. James 1:19-20 NIV

I sit back and think of when the last time I enjoyed a Friday. Today is going to be one of those days. It’s meeting day, some attacks may happen during this meeting. Thank God for speaking James 1:19-20 to me during meditation.

Take a moment and think about today and going into the meeting. What can be done during the meeting that can prevent anger? There are injustices at the job, there are things that can take time and time is something we do not have. Part of the injustice is that maybe there are not enough people for the amount of work that needs to be done. There may be so many egos, prideful people that can be selfish at times and talk so much that many people will stop listening.  God doesn’t like ugly. If it is not in God’s desire, he doesn’t like it. Instead of anger, take your hurt to God. Take how you feel and let God fight that battle. These issues will take many miles and not minutes. Maybe you walk into a meeting and say I wish the manager can recognize and say what a good job you all are doing and thank you for your work, it’s been a difficult week. Understanding and realizing the hard work put in throughout the week, the issues that arise that was solved, the complaints that can drain people out. This is the type of listening that can happen versus talking so much. Take a moment and reflect on James 1:19-20 and the day ahead of you. Let’s pray!

Father, you are good. Today will be the biggest challenge for anyone that is not on the high road of success. I pray for egos and prideful people as we walk into our meeting today. I pray that people recognize that talking so much and listening so little can show that other people’s opinions and thoughts are not valued. I pray that as we walk in today that we can be the best for you. I thank you for allowing me to do these devotions with a good heart. I give you all the honor and praise and ask all these gifts in Jesus name, Amen!

Understanding Dependence

April 13, 2020

Word of the day: 27 The eternal God is your refuge, and underneath are the everlasting arms. Deuteronomy 33:27a NIV

Have you realized that you may be depending on something mundane or worshipping things that don’t matter? We live in the freedom of choice. The consequences of living without God can wipe a person out. What makes us worship something that may draw our attention from God? Clothes, money, cars, technology, fornication, food, excessive alcohol, and the list go on. There are certain things we do to worship God, such as technology and books that will not always draw us away from God. We have to be careful about the choices we make when we want to worship God. Even though God is our refuge, we can’t draw away from him as an excuse and expect him to catch us when we fall. If we were living right by him and we still fall, he is there. Otherwise, our choices are the result of tough love. Will you depend on him when you fall, and he is not there to pick you up? Will you believe then that he is the way and the truth and that he knows your plans better than you? This morning, I pray for wisdom to know the difference and the focus to have on him.

Father, thank you for today. I pray today for wisdom in our choices. I pray for this because understanding is defining for us in life. It is essential to understand the need to stay focused on you and the choices we make to keep on you. Thank you for your love, and thank you for our fellowship. In Jesus’ name. Amen!

Know When God is Speaking to You

June 27, 2019

Word of the Day: When he has brought out all his own, he goes on ahead of them, and his sheep follow him because they know his voice. John 10:4 -NIV

I must admit, as I sit here at my desk in my favorite spot in the morning, preparing to open my mind and heart to the holy spirit to allow me to write this, for the first time, blank stare. What am I going to write? Sipping my cup of coffee, Bible at hand, I am stumped. From time to time, this will happen, my first time is now for writing these. The last couple of days, I kept reading and hearing, listen to the holy spirit. Do you hear me? THAT’S IT!!! How do we know when God is speaking to us? John 10:4a, his sheep will follow him because they know his voice. 

To you, both Belinda and Annie, take a moment to learn how we are in this position now. Did something happen in both of you to know that you need God to get through these days? Did you recognize a voice? Where does your strength come from? Take a moment and think about it. For me, both of you was the holy spirit speaking to me to share this. You two was no longer Annie and Belinda in my eyes. That means a lot to me. Doing this fast, I knew I was being spoken to but did not know the purpose of being spoken to. Being uncomfortable, but comfortable in my own way, sharing the word in the way I know how. In my view, that is how we came together and where we are now. Please take a moment to reflect on how we ended up together, your own story.

Father, you are good, thank you for this time. Thank you for opening up Annie and Belinda that their own strength is not relied on to get through the day and that only the holy spirit is the way to get through the day. It is okay to feel tired at times of this broken world, but better to understand that quiet time with you is always the way to hear your voice. Your voice is the answer and I thank you for your voice as it is always right! I give you all the praise, in Jesus name, Amen!