Forgiveness and Blessing

I haven’t stolen anything; I haven’t killed anybody; I haven’t slept with anyone I’m not married to …. but I can surely confess that I have had thoughts about people that were not in line with the will of God on this day; I can surely confess that I’ve wanted something in my life that I do not have; I can surely confess that I’ve doubted even for a moment something that I know God can do.  And you know what?!?!  All of that is sin!!  But you know what?!?!  When I admonish my wrong and go before my Father seeking His face — He will forgive me and heal me of my sin and make me write before Him.  OH!  Hallelujah!  Bless His Holy Name!  Don’t miss your shout cue, y’all!

God’s people are not exempt from falling into sin.  In fact, it is overtly stated throughout scripture that there is none – not one – who does not sin.  However, as God’s people – His dearly beloved  – we can rest assured that when we sincerely repent from our sin; crying out to Him to forgive us and change us and and committing to change and turn from it – He will not only forgive and cleanse us – but He will surely bless us!

Even in the midst of your failures, don’t miss the promise of Our Father!!  It is His promise that He will grant the pleas of His people if they embody/demonstrate/prove a true heart for Him!

What must we do? Humble ourselves. Pray. Seek His face. Turn from our sin.  This promise was spoken to God’s people Israel, but I believe that as God’s people today this truth still applies.  When you sin (and you WILL sin) – submit to God’s authority; cry out to Him for forgiveness; listen for His direction for you; and commit to never go back to doing that thing and I believe that even when we sin grievously and find ourselves in the hand of our enemy – He will turn that thing around!

Our sin will surely bring with it unpleasant consequences but it is His good pleasure to bind up our wounds – even those He inflicts upon us.  Our pride will bring us to destruction – but if we humble ourselves under His mighty hand – He will exalt us in due time.  He knew we would falter – and He has always made a way for us to set things right with Him.  Forgiveness and blessing!  Who wouldn’t serve a God like that?!

If I shut up the heavens so that there is no rain, or if I command the locust to devour the land, or if I send pestilence among My people, and My people who are called by My name humble themselves and pray and seek My face and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven, will forgive their sin and will heal their land.

2 Chronicles 7:13, 14

Tame That Tongue!

My dear friend and mentor, the late Brenda Waters, wrote a song that she taught me before we relocated to Ghana — the chorus says,

“You talk about who’s been sleeping with who; and you talk about who’s been cheatin’ with who.  You talk about the preachers and the way they preach, you even think you want to try to impeach them.  You talk about whose been smoking that stuff, and you talk about whose been shootin’ it up. And you talk and you talk, and you talk and you talk, and you talk and you talk!

Don’t you know that God wants to use your tongue for glory?

You know that He’s worthy! Give Him the Glory!”

There are many days when what I hear (or read) coming from the hearts of my Christian brothers and sisters just breaks my heart. I hear (and read) words of hate, deception, anger, disdain and judgment and it leaves me concerned for the world – because if the Body of Christ is not getting it right, who will? Whether in response to that person that cuts you off on the freeway; that driver that seems to be going just a little to slow when you’re trying to get somewhere; in response to the blatant injustices happening in America; in response to political decisions that we do not like; in response to a loved one being hurt by another; in response to being taken advantage of; in response to the feeling that our rights have been treaded on; in response to sin in leadership that seems to have been overlooked — in response to the myriads of things that can cause us angst; we must be careful not to allow our mouths to be used as a tool of the enemy.

When we open our mouths to speak what is evil/sin/wicked/hateful/not godly — we open our lives up to evil/sin/wickedness/ungodliness. The old Dracula movies said that he could not come in unless someone opened the door and invited him; our enemy Satan is the same way. The Word of God tells us that the power of life and death are in the tongue. Don’t you want your life to be blessed? I do! I’m not trying to create hell here on earth for me to live in.

I made the decision long ago to speak life into my own life; into the lives of the people around me; into this world. What is life? Life is God. What is God? God is Love!! Love!! Love!!!

If you want to live a life that is marked by His blessings – choose to open your mouth and speak love and life. Don’t malign someone just to make yourself feel better. Don’t gossip and say it is a call to prayer. Don’t repeat something that you know is not true and use the excuse that so and so told you. Don’t spread falsehoods and use the excuse that you found it on the internet. Don’t let the media form the message that comes from you. Make a stand for love and for truth.  You see, it is a sad commentary when the world can’t tell us from them!

Some of you are dealing with serious issues that will require divine intervention — it would seem that if you need the divine power of God in your life, you would live, act and speak in ways that invite His power in to your life. I want everyone who encounters me in this world to know that I am different. As a new friend said to me recently – I want them to be attracted to the Jesus glow in me. I want to walk in the favor and blessing of God.

I will NOT be used by the enemy to bring hate into the world. I will NOT spread the story when I don’t even know if the story is true. I will NOT invite the enemy into my life, my heart, my mind, my home. My yes will be yes; my no will be no. I want my life to bring God glory. I want my tongue to bring God glory. I want to experience the blessed life that believers have been promised. May the Holy Spirit work in me to make it so.

‘For, “Whoever would love life and see good days must keep their tongue from evil and their lips from deceitful speech. ‘

1 Peter 3:10

We better watch out!!


I was reading Deuteronomy 32 this morning. If I removed the Old Testament names and references, this could be talking about America!!

We (The United States of America) were never a Christian nation – we were built upon a foundation of religious freedom and freedom to pursue personal satisfaction —  BUT we’ve always had a reverence for God and godly people! This was evidenced at one time by things like: not using profanity in the earshot of ministers; turning down our radios when we passed a church; removing our hats in a place of worship; keeping our hateful words and thoughts private; attending church at least on Christmas, Mothers Day and Easter; etc. I’m sure you have your own lists. But now …. we who call ourselves Christ followers align ourselves with those who profane His name; who minimize His ministry of grace; who make themselves high; who spew venom…..

Y’all!!! We better watch out! God blessed America for many years and we are not even His chosen people! He blessed us because there was a time when we, as a nation prayed for the peace of Jerusalem; there was a time when He could see at least one righteous among us.  He blessed us because in spite of our grievous sin, we had a reverence and respect for the things and people of God. But, in the words of my friend Eulalia King, “We have lost our Plum D minds!”

Believers – rise up! Speak out! Act justly! Love mercy! Because as for me and my house – we ain’t trying to go out like that!!

From The Message Bible. “Jeshurun put on weight and bucked; you got fat, became obese, a tub of lard. … You walked out on the Rock who gave you your life, forgot the birth-God who brought you into the world.  GOD saw it and turned on his heel, angered and hurt by his sons and daughters. He said, “From now on I’m looking the other way. Wait and see what happens to them. Oh, they’re a turned-around, upside-down generation! Who knows what they’ll do from one moment to the next? They’ve goaded me with their no-gods, infuriated me with their hot-air gods; … I’ll pile catastrophes on them, I’ll shoot my arrows at them: Starvation, blistering heat, killing disease; I’ll send snarling wild animals to attack from the forest and venomous creatures to strike from the dust. Killing in the streets, terror in the houses, Young men and virgins alike struck down, and yes, breast-feeding babies and gray-haired old men.”” ‭‭Deuteronomy‬ ‭32:15-25‬ ‭‬

Weeping for Lost Souls

hearttearsReading the account of Lazarus death and resurrection in John, I was struck by the grief of our Savior.  The onlookers remarked about his love for Lazarus.  I re-read the account and it occurred to me that because He is God – what He grieved for was probably not what we might think he  grieved for.  Yes – He loved Lazarus; but it seems unusual to me that our Lord who knew that He was going to raise Lazarus from the dead would be weeping over the loss of life; so I re-read the passage several more times and then it occurred to me that the humanity of our Christ came face to face with the reality of the wages of sin and what it means for a fallen humanity.  He was fully human – Yes! – but he was without sin!  He loved these people deeply and what was happening here brought our Lord face to face with the effects that sin would have not only on the sinner, but on those whom the sinner loves. I believe that He grieved for their sinfulness. He grieved the effects of their unbelief.  Continue reading “Weeping for Lost Souls”

OK – so the guy…

OK – so the guy is gay – why all this hatoration!! Are you afraid that the gay juice will rub off on you or something. I didn’t see all this uproar when Madoff ran off with people’s life savings or when our own nation destroyed another nation based on false reports of weapons of mass destruction.

Jesus has commanded that we love one another, that we bear one anothers burdens, that we remember that we are not without sin, that we judge in the manner that we wish to be judged, that we be merciful. When we learn that the best way to be — is like Jesus! Yes! Our hearts should cry when any person is caught up in any sin (homosexuality is not any bigger than lying about the support you give to missions and don’t!) but it is not ours to judge! It is ours to pray, to love, and ultimately to reconcile a fallen world back to its God and Savior. It is ours to forgive. And might I add that the world’s God and Savior is not called by my name or YOURS!! We are agents of love on this earth and just as Jesus loved us back to the truth and loved us right back into his bosom. We must pray for the lost, pray for ALL sinners (should I list the sins here or would that cause some of you angst as you would see your name on the sin!) — and ultimately we must allow the Holy Spirit to do His work. I choose to love! and so should you!! When the woman was caught in adultery – Jesus did not bash her or hate her or sentence her to eternal damnation – he forgave her and pointed out to her that those who were accusing her had their own sin to deal with. Let you who are without sin cast the first stone!!! I am choosing to love – to pray – and to seek God’s best for Jason Collins. May God have mercy on him — and on ALL of us. Except, of course, for all of you who are without sin!!!

Jan