Where did all the Christmas joy go?

Where did all the Christmas joy go? How did things get so complicated? So rushed? So squeezed and cluttered? It doesn’t have to be that way. We can choose to step aside, step into a quieter moment, and read angel’s words that came on that night that changed the world.

Luke 2:10-11

“But the angel said to them, ‘Do not be afraid. I bring you good news of great joy that will be for all the people. Today in the town of David a Savior has been born to you; he is Christ the Lord.’”

Real joy is never something that originates from within, it has to come to us from without. Trying to find joy by getting it out of yourself is like believing a river can flow uphill. Maybe that’s one of the reasons why so many have a hard time finding joy at Christmas. Bite into a Christmas cookie, and you might enjoy it. Open a shiny package and you might enjoy what you find inside. But joy itself—in its true and pure form—is so much more than enjoyment. Joy is the startling realization that God really has claimed territory in this world. He’s taken back what belongs to him.

I have found that my enjoyment is seeing the people around me happy. I simple smile on someone’s face will brighten anyone’s day. Stepping into a stranger space, when you are out and about, and asking them how they are doing gives them life.  And when the favor is returned, you can not help but reflect that you have been spoken too.  We have to look out in life and make the determination that happiness is what we want and we will not settle for less. Joy is a thirst that can not be quenched; a hunger that knows it will go on and on. It’s a good thing, to never get enough of God. GOD love you and has not forsaken you. I want to leave you today with a short video of  TD JAKES ” The Gift”. – He So Loved Me!

http://www.tdjakes.org/watchnow — at The Potter’s House of Dallasjesus.jpg

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Just because something great happens doesn’t mean it is from God.

Just because something great happens doesn’t mean it is from God.  Good things can be accomplished through tactics known as manipulation.   I know this is true because I know how to manipulate and make things happen. Honestly, I hate that word.  But there it is.

I know how to sell an idea I think is really great.

I know how to go the extra mile.

I know how to make a plan seem like a great strategy.

And not that any of this is intrinsically bad. Some of these things are great qualities God can certainly use in good ways.

But what if I use these skills and talents outside God’s will? To push past God’s timing, God’s direction, God’s plan to teach me stuff in the process?

Sometimes I think He lets us push past His better plan to experience the consequences of our headstrong attitude. Boy do I know all about that. I’ve jumped headfirst into something I thought I wanted so much, only to find extreme stress, fear, anxiety and an overwhelming sense of regret.

It’s great to know how to sell an idea. But it’s not great to do it outside God’s will.

“The Lord will guide you always; He will satisfy your needs in a sun-scorched land and will strengthen your frame. You will be like a well-watered garden, like a spring whose waters never fail.”Isaiah 58:11 

I am learning. Learning to not always push so hard. Run so fast. And desire so much more. Though Faith, I can rest in the assurance that if something is to be, it isn’t up to me. It’s up to God. It’s not that I just sit back and don’t pursue things. I do. But I give what I can give without manipulation. And then I wait for God to give what only He can give. So, if He makes it happen without all my chaotic self-effort, then I will know it is His best.

And if it doesn’t happen, I will thank Him for saving me from myself.

Dear Lord, I am so grateful for Your everlasting love and vision for my life. Help me to embrace the fact that Your plans are so much greater than mine. Humble my heart in the moments when I try to maintain control so that I can fully serve You. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.

God wants you to give up your own agenda and trust in His plans for your life! Set aside some time every day to reflect on Bible verses dedicated to this particular issue. Having this daily reminder of God’s sovereignty will help you to recognize when your own desires are taking precedence over His will.

POWER VERSE:

Proverbs 3:5-6, “Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways submit to him, and he will make your paths straight.”

Focusing on I will get you nowhere

Jesus said in John 12:24 that “… unless a grain of wheat falls into the earth and dies, it remains alone.” Alone is a miserable place to be.
“But,” Christ continued in saying, “if it dies, it bears much fruit.” (ESV) The principle is this: when it is all about us, we are like that seed that is unwilling to die. Consequently, we find ourselves alone in the prison of our own self-awareness. But, when we are willing to turn from thinking only of ourselves,” we are then ready to experience real life, satisfying life.
God is teaching me that true self-esteem comes from being reduced—less of me, more of Him. As I am willing to relinquish my sense of self—self-pity, self-awareness and self-absorption—I am finding simplicity in an identity that comes from His life in me, rather than an identity based upon me, myself and I.
Today, let’s choose to be more full of God than we are of ourselves.
Dear Lord, I want to decrease so You will increase in me. May I will be like a seed, willing to die, so I can truly live and give life to others. May my letter “I” not be in pride or sin, but may it be found in Christ. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.

Mary did you know?

This morning I was listening to Steve Harvey on his morning show.  He had just started talking about this song sung by Celo Green”Mary do you know”.  I never listen to this artist but this morning this song caught my heart and almost made me pull my car over to the side of the road.  Yes, GOD was at work again on me this morning.  I want to play this song for you and let you see what you feel in your hearts. I dedicate this song and video to all the single mothers and fathers whom raised those children up to one day see them be an inspirations to the world. Did you not know that the forehead you kissed would one day become a doctor, lawyer, or even the President of the United States.  Blessed are all creators and may GOD bless you and your family this Christmas Holiday.

Do not let Guilt or Shame

The Bible tells us David committed adultery with a soldier’s wife, then had the innocent man killed to cover up the act. While I haven’t walked in David’s sandals, I do know what it’s like to feel guilt and shame over what I’ve done … or haven’t done.

Guilt wraps its way around your mind and heart until it chokes out the truth. You avoid people, situations and places. Embarrassment leads you into disobedience. I know you have all heard these things play in your mind:

-He’ll never forgive you.
-You’re the worst mother on the planet.
-What kind of Christian does that?
-Just give up; you’ll never do better.

After David had performed this sinful deed, he could have given up trying to be a man of God. Who would respect him after such shameful behavior? But David didn’t give up.

Rather than pulling back from life, he pressed towards God.

And God forgave David and continued to use him for years. God took him from a shepherd’s field to the king’s throne.

Half of David’s situation is common. We all make mistakes. We all fall short. We all need a Savior. The other half, the redemption, isn’t so common. Too many people sit on the sidelines after a wrong choice, guilt-ridden and convinced they are disqualified from service. So why was David’s story different? How was David restored to a position of honor and respect after behaving so shamefully?

The answer is whispered and shouted throughout the book of Psalms. We hear it in David’s prayers and poems. Rather than living with a sentence of guilt, David chose to be grateful. He turned attention from himself to His God – and that changed everything.

David sought God’s forgiveness with a sincere heart (Psalm 51). He had to truly repent. But then, his focus turned to thankfulness. Psalm 116 records David’s words: “O LORD, I am your servant; yes, I am your servant, born into your household; you have freed me from my chains. I will offer you a sacrifice of thanksgiving and call on the name of the LORD.” (vs. 16 & 17)

Thankfulness is hard to come by when we feel like the scum of the earth. It feels like a sacrifice to offer praise instead of allowing our hearts to sink into self-pity with thoughts like, “I’ll never change.” “I’m such a failure.”

Gratefulness changes my perspective and opens my heart to the truth. And it’s your truth as well. Jesus has already paid the price for our sins, so we don’t have to pay it every day through guilt. When we humbly seek His forgiveness (and the forgiveness of others when necessary) our sins are forgiven. Through Christ’s sacrifice we are set free.

Dear Lord, today I desperately need Your forgiveness. Please forgive me for what I’ve done and what I’ve not done. Help me to exchange the lies of the enemy for Your truth. Create a clean spirit within me so that I can serve You all the days of my life. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.

Hello world!

Hello Facebook, Twitter, Tumblr and all family and friends.  Just writing to let you all know that thru your inspiration i have went out and develop my own site. I created this forum for all that would like to read and get inspired thru others. I hope you like it and feel free to leave comments.  Love you all. Your brother in Christ.