Archive for February, 2012

“The LORD is with you, mighty warrior.” – Judges 6:12

What excites me about the promise of Abraham is its accessibility to any and everyone who receives the promise. No matter what state I find myself in at the time I receive and accept God’s promise to Abraham I become an heir. No matter how far away I may feel from God, I become an heir and experience His intimacy the moment I embrace the promise. No matter my status in life, my value or worth in the eyes of others, the moment I believe the promise of Abraham is mine too, God accepts me, embraces me and expresses to me my significance in Him through Christ. No matter how difficult my circumstances, or dark the moment, when I embrace and believe I am a beneficiary of God’s promise to Abraham that’s when the process of change begins.

Romans 4:16-21 indicates that the promise comes by faith and provides an illustration of who God is and Abraham’s response to the promise in light of the reality of his circumstances. Abraham faced the fact that his circumstances suggested that he would not be a good candidate for what God promised He would do for Abraham, but the bible declares that against all hope in hope Abraham believed and was strengthened in his faith being persuaded God had the power to do what He promised. Abraham’s circusmtances, according to scripture, suggested he and his wife were beyond the possibility of bearing children and there was no possibility of life coming from them. But, Abraham believed God; described as the One who gives life from death and calls those things that are not as they ought to be. The One who makes all things beautiful in His time brought life from within them because with Him all things are possible!

Gideon also discovered the One who calls those things that are not as they ought to be. Gideon felt he was the least likely to be significant, capable or influential in his circumstances to affect positive change, but he desired it. When he and God encountered each other in the scripture in the book of Judges chapter 6, Gideon described himself as the least in his family whom he regarded as the weakest of the clans in the 12 tribes of Israel. In the sight of his circumstances and the reality of the world around him, Gideon did not see how his person and presence had any significance in being able to make a difference. yet when the angel of the LORD visited Gideon, He declared Gideon to be a mighty warrior. The one who saw himself as the least of his family was seen by God as a mighty warrior! One encounter with God will change the disposition and direction of anyone who sincerely seeks change and allows the One who gives life to make use of them to bless them, be a blessing to others and make the world around them a better place.

May the God who gives life and speaks with power to transform declare from the throne of His sanctuary power, peace, joy, love and wisdom to you that will bless you, inspire you to bless others and influence you to affect positive change in the world around you to make it better.

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“Therefore, the promise comes by faith, so that it may be by grace and may be guaranteed to all Abraham’s offspring.” – Romans 4:16a

It is through the revelation of scripture God makes known to us His plan to make use of those who trust Him and acknowledge His Son Jesus Christ to help make this world a better place. For the past 3 years God’s promise to Abraham has meant more to me personally and a phone conversation had with a dear colleague and friend last night reinforced the value of believing myself to be an heir of the promise of Abraham. 3 years ago I was led to collaborate aspirations of establishing a non-profit program to help youth with my friend and colleague and I enlisted myself to help her make progress in getting her program, Community Tutoring,Inc.,  moving forward. The summer of 2010 I worked within her program all summer for free believing God had moved me to support her in establishing her program to help close the achievement gap for african-american children through tutoring in math, reading and writing. Dream it, Believe it, Do it is her slogan. I believed intensely in our connection as children of faith, her mission and passion in serving the greater community of Prince George’s County Public Schools by empowering african-american youth through education, working for free was an act of faith believing God will bless what He initiated through us to come together to fulfill the promise of being a blessing to others and making the world around us a better place. Our prayer was for the program to become established as a viable program to benefit the youth of our community of Prince George’s County.

3 years later she has since received funding to establish her summer program, Summit Summer Camp. She has a staff of 4 employees to help her serve now Prince George’s and Dorchester County with a vision to expand to a year round program. She left the field of education, by faith, to trust God and follow Him as an heir of the promise. She has received support from Maryland University’s graduate program to receive graduate staff employees to serve in her summer program that offers technology engineering and support from NASA through another professional colleague. The second year after we started up the summer program she received support from a local church who allowed her program to operate out of their church house/school center in return for tutorial service for the children of their congregation. I am in awe of God fulfilling the promise of Abraham and I rejoice in watching Him perform His deeds to bless my friend and colleague, make her a blessing to others and make the world around her a better place!

The promise of Abraham comes by faith and grace, because it is accomplished by the One who brings life from death and calls things that are not as they ought to be! Like Abraham, all I have to do is believe what God says and follow what He requires of me to make use of me to bless me, be a blessing to others and make the world around me a better place. Faith in Christ allows me to be blessed with the intimate presence, person and power of God through His Holy Spirit living in me to work through me to be a light to the world!

May God arouse within you the passion to believe and follow through to take action in being used by Him to be blessed to bless others and affect positive change! Be the change you want to see!

“The LORD said to Abram, ‘I will make you into a great nation and I will bless you; I will make your name great, and you will be a blessing. I will bless those who bless you, and whoever curses you I will curse; and all the peoples on earth will be blessed through you.'” – Genesis 12:1a, 2-3

Question. Is what God said to Abraham in Genesis 12 meant for you and I too? According to the bible it is, if you believe. “If you belong to Christ, then you are Abraham’s seed, and heirs according to the promise.” – Galatians 3:29 Faith in Jesus Christ affords me a great privilege to be part of a great proclamation of blessing God promised would be inherited by anyone and all who believe in God’s word as Abraham did when God spoke the blessing of promise to him so many centuries ago. 19 years into my faith walk with Christ, I am in awe, humbled and my soul rejoices in watching how God has been generous towards me to confer the blessing and promise of Abraham to me. As I recall and reflect upon moments in my life where I can see the providential hand of God bestow upon me favor, grace and mercy to keep me going, help me to live and be victorious my soul rejoices!

God seeks to speak His blessings and promises into the hearts and souls of everyone whose heart is open to believe Him and receive His Son Jesus Christ. He wants to bless us to be a blessing to others and make this world a better place. I have discovered embracing the promise of Genesis 12 to Abraham strengthens my assurance and confidence in God to fulfill His promises and performs what He speaks in  His word and enables me to experience the closeness of His presence intimately as one He loves. How great is the knowledge of God wanting to reciprocate in the life of every believer the promise conferred upon Abraham to spread His message of love and empowerment  from one generation to another! Reflection upon God’s promise to Abraham causes me to consider the time period of the Civil Rights Movement and the legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. A movement spawned by faith that changed a nation and impacted the world.

Each of us has been invited by God to be used by Him to affect change and isnpire others. God told Joshua He would give him every place he set his foot if he obeyed God’s commands and remained strong and courageous. Where has God placed you and in what environments has He set you over He would like to use you to make it a better place? Let God work His love, joy and peace in you and through you in your family, at work, with colleagues and friends and even amongst your enemies and watch the promise of Abraham be fulfilled, as you believe, to be blessed, bless others and make the environment around you a better place. I believe this is what will make our name great in the eyes of God and amongst others!

May God strengthen you to act upon what He speaks in your heart to receive His blessings, bless others and make the world around you a better place.

“As I was with Moses, so I will be with you; I will never leave you nor forsake you.” – Joshua 1:5

When you hear, ‘God is the same yesterday, today and forever. He never changes,’ what comes to your mind? My understanding of this from the perspective of scripture provides me reassuarnce and helps me to grow in assurance and confidence God will do for me what He has done for others, including those whose lives are illustrated before me in scripture. Meaning, do you believe what God said to Joshua applies to you? God used the illustration of His faith relationship with Moses, whom Joshua served under as a military leader, to reinforce to Joshua the need to be confident in Him as God to do for Joshua what He did for Moses.

This same principle was also illustrated in the life of Joseph in the book of Genesis. The bible indicates that while Joseph suffered the injustice of being sold into slavery, betrayed by his brothers, and thrown into prison unjustly because of false accusations, the LORD was with Joseph. In fact, it was indicated in scripture that Joseph was successful in everything he did during that time period because the LORD was with Him. God promised that same success to Joshua in the first chapter of the book of Joshua (see Joshua 1:8). Despite any misfortune, injustice or loss you may have encountered, even as a Christian, do you believe the LORD is with you and will give you success?

I believe success is inevitable for those who seek the LORD. I also believe success is relative, so one man’s success does not diminish the measure of success another man has accomplished. Faith in Christ is teaching me to consider the actions I must take daily to position myself to progress towards success that allows me to experience happiness rather  than waiting for something to happen that only leaves me feeling disappointed, discouraged and unhappy more often longer. ‘Therefore, because the LORD is with me as He was with Moses and Joshua I will…. ‘ What will you allow yourself to begin to believe and take action to see God help you experience true success and happiness in because He is with you?

May God help you and bless you as you take action to progress towards success and happiness in being engaged with Him in faith and life.

“Answer me when I call to you, O my righteous God. Give me relief from my distress; be merciful to me and hear my prayer.” 

– Psalm 4:1

There is a passage of scripture found in the bible that states that when Jesus looked upon the multitude of people He saw them as helpless and harassed and had compassion on them. In the Old Testament book of 1st Samuel there are a group of people being described as distressed, in debt and discontent. What this does for me when I read and reflect upon this sincerely is fill me with peace, comfort and encouragement. It reinforces to me that God sees me in my circumstances and understands how I am feeling and how I’m being impacted by them. And it also reassures me that God is moved with compassion towards me because of what I am going through.

I believe this, because in the book of Exodus He told Moses to tell His people that He sees them in their circumstances in slavery in Egypt, He has heard them, He is concerned about them and He will come to them and deliver them and bless them when He brings them out! When I take the time to sincerely reflect back upon my life and recall the many times I’ve felt helpless and harassed by life’s circumstances I am filled with awe, gratitude and thanksgiving for God’s deeds towards me that fulfilled His promise to be with me, help me and bless me.

“I have indeed seen the misery of my people in Egypt. I have heard them crying out because of their slave drivers, and I am concerned about their suffering.” – Exodus 3:7a From His look of compassion towards us God sent His Son Jesus Christ into the world to save the helpless and harassed and to anyone who believed in His Son, He gave them salvation and the gift of eternal life. Now everyday for the believer in Christ is an opportunity to experience the fulfillment of God’s salvation, through faith in Christ, to save them from the reality of the external troubles and the internal misery of suffering Jesus said we would encounter in this world.

May God strengthen you to relinquish to Him what burdens your soul and torments you to experience the rest, release and relief He promises to give to everyone who comes to Him.

“But we prayed to our God and posted a guard day and night to meet this threat.” – Nehemiah 4:9

How do you normally respond when you to come to the place known as dissatisfaction? Faith in Christ is teaching me that there are one of 2 courses to take. One would be to take action to address the dissatisfaction and find responsible means to best remedy the situation or circumstance that brought about the feelings of dissatisfaction. The second course of action would simply be to do nothing about it and wallow in it and allow the normal temporal feeling to grow into a disposition of being disenfranchised, disgruntled, cynnical or ungrateful.

Learning to take a sincere assessment of why I am feeling and thinking about being dissatisfied is enabling me and empowering me to recognize when appropriate actions need to be taken to change my disposition from a place of dissatisfaction to a posture of contentment. As I mature in my faith walk with Christ I discover the need to make a sincere assessment of where I am in life and how I arrived there and what I am willing to do to better my situation. Learning to engage with God through prayer about how I’m feeling and what I am thinking about helps me in allowing Him to work in me both to will and to act (to want to do and follow through) according to what His will is for me in my circumstances to experience the full life Christ came for me to have.

Sometimes overcoming dissatisfaction first begins with accepting what the current conditions of my circumstances are before I can begin to take action. If I am stuck in frustration over what my state currently is, how can I effectively make reasonable, responsible decisions about making progress, moving forward and looking ahead? Acceptance brings me to the place called contentment and it is in that place where I can begin to think about the fulfillment I desire from a posture of expectancy to help me overcome my dissatisfaction. Take action first with prayer! I believe the first blessing of sincere prayer is peace of mind and a soul at rest.

May God illuminate the eyes of your mind and fill your heart with His peace to enlighten you and help you to take action to experience contentment and fulfillment from your current place of dissatisfaction.

“I was pushed back and about to fall, but the LORD helped me.”

– Psalm 118:13

The circumstances of life have a way of bullying us, intimidating us and tormenting us into a position or posture of feeling victimized and overwhelmed. Reading the bible intently has helped me to discover that I am not alone when I find myself in those moments of life feeling pushed back and pressed up against the wall. In fact, I have come to take solace in knowing and understanding that it is in those places where I discover the intimate imminent person, power and presence of God, through faith in Jesus Christ, to aid, help and support me in having the courage, confidence and inner strength to stand firm and push back against what’s pressing me.

In the face of loss, misfortune and injustice, I learn to trust God and believe He is with me to help me and bless me no matter what the circumstances. I am learning to spread my concerns before Him in prayer with assurance and confidence He will answer me. Consistent reflection upon His word and His past deeds, reminds me and reinforces to me His concern and care for me as one He loves. God is my greatest resource to deal with life’s challenges and supplies me with everything I need to live and experience the full life Christ came for me to have!

It’s time to push back in the Spirit with prayer, praise and resolute proclamation of what you believe, by faith, instead of continuing to be pushed back by life’s troubles. From the sanctuary of His throne God declares Himself as One who brings forth life from death and calls things that are not as they ought to be. Allow your soul to become aroused with His Spirit and His word to grant you the spiritual fortitude and internal resolve required to begin to push back against what has sought to overwhelm you and prevail against you. Acknowledgement of Jesus Christ as LORD and Savior and recognition of His death and shed blood for the redemption of your soul from sin will give you unlimited power and strength to begin to push back against addiction, debt, sexual sin, rejection, sickness, rage, distress, depression and the whole host of challenges we face in this life!

I pray God will strengthen you and empower you to begin to push back!