26:1 - Can I truly ask God to test me? Do I let Him examine my heart? Do I fear what He will find in me?

26:7 - What do I proclaim? What does my actions, decisions, and life proclaim? Is it my life or God's?

26:12 - God is our level ground. As long as our feet are planted firmly on Him we will walk on the straight path.


27:1 - If God is truly our salvation who do we need to fear? If the Lord is truly the stronghold of our life, then who do we have to be afraid of?

27:4 - All I want is to be in God's presence.

27:8 - "Seek His face" - To see Him because we love Him not because we believe He can do something for us.

27:11 - "Lead me in a straight path" - Are we trying to lead God or is He leading us? If we do anything on our own I believe that we are getting ahead of Him.

27:13 - What am I confident in?

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Friday, July 30, 2010 Posted in | | 0 Comments »

Here are some quotes from people I follow on twitter that really stirred me this week.

@BrianCHouston - The LESS you focus on your lack, and MORE you know your source; the MORE miracles you'll see, and LESS daunting it'll be!

@craiggroeschel - We are faith-filled, big thinking, bet-the-farm risk takers. We’ll never insult God with small thinking and safe living.

@MarkBatterson - I don't care how much u know. how teachable are u? teachability trumps knowledge every time!

@bennyperez - Distractions on the outside create distortions on the inside. Keeping my eyes on Jesus the Author and Finisher of my Faith. Rest in Him.

@AndyStanely - We fear the consequences of confession because we've yet to experience the consequences of concealment.

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Thursday, July 29, 2010 Posted in | | 0 Comments »

that even though our hearts feel distant, God is not.

God places people in our lives on purpose.

integrity is built not found.

never ask God to take something away that you are not willing to give up.

if you find yourself in a season that you have never been in, it might be because God wants to do something in you that He has been waiting to do for a long time.

the reality on the mind is not always the reality around me, guard your mind.

you should have markers in your life. Things that you place along the journey to look back and see how far God has brought you.

becareful the prayers you pray, God might just answer them.

that God's love and mercy are truly overwhelming.

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Wednesday, July 28, 2010 Posted in | | 0 Comments »

24:1 - Everything is God's. Everything has been created in Him, by Him, and for Him.

24:4 - My prayer has to be for God to give me clean hands and a pure heart. I want to be someone who is striving and longing to stand in His Holy Place. I want my life to be lived in His presence.

24:10 - My God is the King of kings and the Lords of lords. There is no one or nothing like Him. Who can compare to God.


25:4 - Show me Your way path and Your way. I will wait on Your direction. I will fight not to get ahead of God.

25:14 - I want to gain the Lords trust. I want Him to confide in me.

25:15 - My focus and attention has to be set on God.

25:20 - God is my refuge. He is the only one who can rescue me.

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v1 - "My Shepherd" - personal. If He is truly my shepherd I have to submit my life to Him. He knows my needs better than I do. God is MY Shepherd.

v2-3 - "He leads me" - I have to let Him be in control. I do not get ahead of Him. "Quiet waters" - He takes me to and through peace. He is peace. The peace that passes all understanding (Phil 4:7). "Restores MY soul" - If my soul is His then He is the one breathing life into it. "He guides me" - He does not pick me up and move me. I have to take steps.

v4 - I have to take comfort in Him because I will have to walk through things that cause me pain and discomfort in my journey He is leading me on. The only way that is okay is because He is "MY Shepherd." He is mindful of me.

v6 - What follows you? What follows me? If He is the one leading and guiding me then goodness and mercy should be the only things following me.

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Tuesday, July 27, 2010 Posted in | | 0 Comments »

I have shared several times that growing up in a small Methodist church in South Georgia taught me a lot of things. I am grateful for the foundation that it laid in my spiritual life. I cherish the the memories of singing hymns every Sunday, the Men's Breakfasts that would happen every first Sunday, the VBS's, and the faithfulness of good people. There was one issue that always seem to bother me. There always seemed to be a formula to the approach to God. Do this + this + that and it always = the path to God. It did not matter how you lived before service or the way you treated people. As long as you had the formula you were a Christian.

As I have gotten older and dedicated my life to serving God and serving people I have learn that formula most of the time will kill your relationship with God. I have also learned that there is a difference between formula and structure. I know that a formula will not get me to God but I always know that I need structure in my relationship with God.

Without structure I haphazardly serve.

Here are the differences between formula and structure to me:
  • formal looks for results while structure prepares you for awareness
  • formula gives God limitations and boundaries while structure gives him order and permission
  • formula focuses on what is applied and what the outcome is while structure focuses on God and allowing Him to move in our lives.
I have to have structure, I have to:

blog on a regular basis to help sort my thoughts.

journal on a regular basis so I know where the mile markers are on the journey of life and I can

look back and see where God has brought me from
be in His Word everyday and let in marinate in my heart.

This is not a formula to get to God but a structure to help me grow in God.

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The picture on the right was taken Tuesday at the sunset. I stepped out on the balcony of the condo and looked to my right on saw that scene. I was hoping to watched the sunset and saw a bunch of clouds. I was disappointed for a couple of minutes and then rays of the sun started breaking through above the clouds. The clouds could not cover the light of the sun. Even on cloudy days the sun still shines. No matter how big the clouds or how many there are they can not stop the sun from shining. No matter whether you can see it or not it is there.

As I stood there and watch the sun break through the clouds I had a thought. The Son is always shining. The power of Jesus is always around us whether we can see it or not. No matter what our circumstances, no matter what we feel, He is always there. In Matthew 28 He says that He is with us always.

One of the things God has been teaching me over the last couple of weeks is about awareness. God's presence is everywhere always. It is not His presence that changes, it is our awareness. There is one thing that I know for certain, whether we are aware of God or not, He is always aware of me.

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Sunday, July 25, 2010 Posted in | | 0 Comments »

21:7 - In an unstable world God is the only thing that we can put our trust in that will not disappoint us or fail us. When everything around us is shaking He is our stability, in Him we can only truly find peace.

21:13 - There is no way to measure God's strength. His strength is limitless. Our God is a strong God. He is the King of kings and Lord of lords.


22:1 - These are words of Christ while hanging on the cross. These are words He spoke when God withdrew His presence. It is amazing that David saw this event and I feel felt this pain hundreds of years before it took place.

22:18 - Another prophecy of things to come during the crucification of Christ.

22:19 - God is never far off. He is always with us whether we are aware of His presence or not.

22:22 - What am I declaring to those around me? What does my life declare? What does my decisions and my actions declare?

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Last Friday when we checked into our condo the weather was looking pretty iffy. We drove through what seemed like monsoons and did not ever look like they were going to give way to clear skies anytime soon. As we checked in, unloaded, and unpacked I walked out onto the balcony thinking the weather was clearing up around us. The skies still looked grey but did have the slight promise of clearing up soon. As I looked closer I saw that the storm was still hear, I was just looking at it from a different perspective than I was before.

The higher you are the better the perspective of the storm you have.

In life there are going to be storms. That is a truth that none of us can run from. There are going to be a season that things happen and it seems like the pressures of life will never let up. You are never going to be able to breathe again. Nothing will ever seem normal again. There is no end in sight for the downpour that you are standing in the middle of. That means you are looking at storm from the ground, from your perspective.

If we strive to live our life on the higher ground that God has called us to we will see the storm from a different perspective. That does not mean we will miss the storm, just we can see where it is at and that it will not last forever. I challenge you right now, if you are walking through a stormy season then start climbing. Climb into the Word of God, climb into prayer, climb into worship, and climb into His presence.

For He is the only true refuge and safe place during a storm.

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Saturday, July 24, 2010 Posted in | | 0 Comments »

Have really enjoyed spending the last seven days at the beach. It has been nice to relax, read several books, and listen to a lot of podcast. I have had some really good prayer time and really trying to turn my ear to God and ask Him to speak to me. I just want to share some random thoughts that I have had over the last week or so. I am not saying that it was God speaking to me but I am saying it is thoughts that have been stuck in my head and I have been chewing on:

We ask Jesus to come into our hearts and He is asking us to follow Him to a different path to a different life.

Sometimes God will interrupts your life because you couldn't hold or handle what He has for us on the course we were on.

Parents who try to live through their kids and not raise their kids actually damage their kids.

If we never stop and ask "why" people some of the things they do we are more interested in the act than we are the person. Knowing why does not justify or excuse their action but it does help us know them better so we can show God's love, mercy, and grace better.

To admit struggles is not admitting weakness but a confession on the dependency of God's strength and power.

Our excuses are never as big as our call.

If we see ourselves higher than what we are then we have positioned ourselves too high to see the needs of others.

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Friday, July 23, 2010 Posted in | | 0 Comments »

18:1 - Do we love God for what he does or for who He is. Is loving Him for what He does really love?

18:2 - To make it through a difficult time or tough season of time you have to know who God is. It is one thing to have heard about Him but another to know Him.

18:27 - Humility is a choice. If we really stop and be honest with ourselves the only thing we can take pride in is the glory of God. That is something that none of us have anything to do with.

18:30 - God is the only perfect thing.

18:50 - His loving kindness has never and will never fail me or you.


19:1 - Everything we are surrounded by declares the glory of God. He is every where speaking always. We are the ones who are not listening. We are the ones that get distracted.

19:7 - God is the only one who can speak life to a dead soul. If I trust in Him He will bring me revelation that He can bring.

19:10 - It is impossible to measure God. We can not fully understand or comprehend how big God really is. The created can never really fathom the creator.

19:14 - This has to be the prayer of my life. This has to be what I strive for in my life at all times.


20:1 - He always answers when I need Him.

20:4 - He will give my heart His desires.

20:7 - We have to trust in God and God alone. We can not trust in nothing that can be built by man.

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Last Friday I had a thought that I have not been able to shake for a couple of days. "What bothers or irritates you says a lot about who you are or what you need to work on." Then two things hit me about things that bother me personally:

1) Is it something that God is calling me to change in the world? Is it a holy irritation? Will God use my frustration to fuel my passion to see His glory shine in a situation?

2) Is there something in me that God want to work on and He is using this situation to expose it to me?

Either way, I am really believe that God speaks to us through the things that bother us the most. The better question is are we going to be real and transparent enough to obey God in either situation?

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Wednesday, July 21, 2010 Posted in | | 0 Comments »

1 - Everyone wants to know that we have someone who not only hears us but listens to us. God does just that. He not only hears our words, He listens to our hearts.

5 - When our feet stay on His path He can guide our steps. Even though our own way is tempting His way is best.

8 - No matter what God loves me. There is nothing I can do to cause Him to love me any less or any more. The best place to be is hidden in His presence.

14 - This life is not our reward. We forget that sometimes.

15 - God is the one and only thing that truly satisfies my soul.

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2 - Our relationship with the Lord has to be a personal one. When I choose to separate myself from that relationship nothing good can happen.

4 - If I chase after anything else or choose to place anything before my relationship with God I am choosing to be miserable.

5 - Everything that I have is because of God.

8 - My focus always has to be on God. I have to strive to keep Him in front of me. When my eyes are set on Him nothing can shake me.

11 - God is the one who makes my path clear.

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Monday, July 19, 2010 Posted in | | 0 Comments »

I did not die on the cross. This thought may sound a little bit odd and off based. To some it may even sound a little sacrilegious, but it is a thought that I need to keep in front of me from time to time. It is something that I seem to need reminded in ministry from time to time.

My blood will not wash away anyone's sin.

I personally did not defeat death Hell and the grave.

I know that you know all of this but I believe that we get so caught up in ministry that we forget that when people make the wrong choose or reject the Gospel that they are not rejecting us. We love people so much we want to make their choice for them. If we could make those choices then it would not be love would it?

Jesus is the only one that can change hearts and lives. I have a choice. My choice is to submit to Him and allow Him to use me in that process. My choice is never to think that I can change anyones life. I am not the one who died on the cross and rose from the grave.

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14:1 - "The fool," the unmoral, says that there is no God by the way he/she chooses to live. They say it with their actions. They do not have to say it with their words.

14:6 - "But" is an eraser word. No matter what anyone else does in life God is my refuge.


15:1 - I want to stand in God's presence. I want to do whatever it will take to be with Him.

15:5 - If our foundation is built upon God then nothing else can shake us.

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Change is a word that I have been thinking a lot about lately. Can I be an element of change? Can I change anything? What can I change? Can anything change? Can you really stop change? All questions that run through my mind.

When I was young I really thought I could change the world. The older I have become the bigger the world seems and the smaller my passion gets. I heard someone say that a young man wants to change the world, a mature man wants to change his sphere of influence, an old man just wants to change his family, but God the whole time what to change him.

The only change that I am truly responsible for is the change that God wants to do in me. If God can make those changes then other changes will happen naturally around me. Change is something that happens naturally and is happening all the time around us.

The question I need to be asking myself is not what is it I need to change in this world, but what in me God wants to change? Be careful with that question, it can be a dangerous one.

Psalms 139:23-24, "Search me, O God, and know my heart; test me and know my anxious thoughts. See if there is any offensive way in me, and lead me in the way everlasting."

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Friday, July 16, 2010 Posted in | | 0 Comments »

12:1 - There are times that we all will feel isolated and alone in today's world. It is sometimes tough to be aware of God's presence with everything in the world screaming at me.

12:6 - God's Words are the only truth in the world today. They are the only perfect thing that is in our lives.

12:7 - God is my refuge and safe place. He is my safety and security in an unstable world. May we always remember that.

God has a refuge and safe place seems to be a constant theme in David's life. Maybe that is another reason God declares him a man after His own heart. He never tried to find comfort from other places.


13:1 - God does not forget about me. It is not possible. I am always on His mind. I can loose sight of Him and His faithfulness but He never looses sight of me and never forgets about me.

13:2 - We seem to wrestle with our own thoughts and ideas but always find peace and satisfaction in God's. It is what we choose to focus on that matters.

13:5 - It is in God's unfailing love that I trust in. That is the only thing that will not disappoint me. When my focus and attention is set on Him and what He has done for me I will always rejoice.

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Went and watched the new Karate Kid last night and heard a statement that has replayed in my mind several times:

"Doing nothing and being still are two completely different things."

Psalm 46:10, "Be still, and know that I am God..."

This day and age I think we have forgotten how to be still. We have lost the ability to wait on God. We have distorted the difference between being still and doing nothing.

My prayer today is that I remember that God is the one who is in control and I can be still and let Him work. Let Him be God.

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Thursday, July 15, 2010 Posted in | | 0 Comments »

10:1 - There are times that God does feel far off. When we can not see His hand or hear His voice we have to remember to trust His heart. We can not truly trust His heart unless we spend time with Him or time in His Word.

10:17 - God does hear every prayer and every cry. I am grateful that He is the encouragement to the broken and the hurting.


11:1 - If we try to take refuge any other place that in God then we are left exposed. There are times that we even have to take refuge from ourselves.

11:4 - The Lord is on His throne. He is still in control. Everything is in and under His authority.

11:7 - God is a God of justice. My desire is to see His face.

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Wednesday, July 14, 2010 Posted in | | 0 Comments »

life does not get any better than when you understand the Grace of God and strive to walk in it.

you can be who God created and called you to be when you know that the people who love you have your back no matter what.

you may loose yourself but God never looses you.

everyone should have friends that know what you are thinking by the smile that is on your face.

what makes one man tick is not what makes the next one, and that is the beauty of life.

selfishness is only seeing what happens in your world, but selflessness is being aware of the happenings in the world of the people around you.

life is really about the choices you make.

focus will determine perspective.

one of the hardest goals in life is to truly live like Jesus.

grace is free but trust has a price.

you can not dream big dreams unless you have some kind of grasp on reality.

the only reason you try to please everyone around you is because you are not happy with yourself.

words are one of the powerful things on earth, they can either be a tool or a weapon.

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Tuesday, July 13, 2010 Posted in | | 0 Comments »

John 13:14-15, "Now that I, your Lord and Teacher, have washed your feet, you also should wash one another's feet. I have set you an example that you should do as I have done for you."

The question that keeps eating at me this morning is this: Am I willing to do for others what Christ has done for me? Can I show the same grace to people that He has shown to me, can I forgive those that have hurt me like He forgave me? Can I love people that are unloveable like He did me when I was unloveable? Can my life reflect Christ? If not, what does my life reflect?

As we read John 13, we learn that if we are going to be a Follower of Jesus Christ then we do not have many options:

John 13:34-35 "A new command I give you: Love one another. As I have loved you, so you must love one another. By this all men will know that you are my disciples, if you love one another."

It doesn't matter what title I give myself, what matters most is what other people see in me. Am I or can I reflect the heart of Jesus?

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Monday, July 12, 2010 Posted in | | 0 Comments »

8:1 - Our God is an awesome God and His finger prints are everywhere in the world.

8:3 - He is larger than Heaven and Earth. Everything is in His hand and under his control.

8:4 - He is mindful of us! With everything going on in this world, He is mindful of you and I.

8:9 - His name should always be my first and last thoughts of the day.


9:1 - God has to be praised with all of our heart. If He does not have everything then nothing else matters.

9:2 - To be glad is a choice. We have a choice about the way we look at things, feel about things, and act about things.

9:10 - How can I trust God unless I know God?

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6:4 - Very thankful that God's love will never fail me or let me down. My prayer is for me not to understand that love but to learn to walk in it.


7:1 - Refuge is found in God. In God. No other place else. God alone is my safe place.

7:10 - "My shield" - Personal. Ownership. We leave ourself exposed if we do not have a personal relationship with God.

7:17 - If my life is full of thankfulness and gratefulness then there is no room for bitterness, or envy. Learn to celebrate other people.

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Saturday, July 10, 2010 Posted in | | 0 Comments »

v2 - "My King" - Jesus has to sit on the throne of my life. He has to rule and reign in every area. I have to give Him total access and total control of everything.

v3 - My prayer is that God teaches me how to wait. My goal is that my expectation always be the best. Too many times we expect the worse in people and in situations.

v7 - His mercy is what saves us. The mercy of God is the key to His house.

v8 - "Lead me" - He leads, I follow. We have to make a conscious effort not to get ahead of God.

v11 - There is no other place to take refuge except in the Lord. He is the other true safe place.

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Thursday, July 8, 2010 Posted in | | 0 Comments »

I was reading in John 5 today and there are a few thoughts that jumped out at me that I can not ignore.

John 5:1-9, "Some time later, Jesus went up to Jerusalem for a feast of the Jews. Now there is in Jerusalem near the Sheep Gate a pool, which in Aramaic is called Bethesda and which is surrounded by five covered colonnades. Here a great number of disabled people used to lie—the blind, the lame, the paralyzed. One who was there had been an invalid for thirty-eight years. When Jesus saw him lying there and learned that he had been in this condition for a long time, he asked him, "Do you want to get well?" "Sir," the invalid replied, "I have no one to help me into the pool when the water is stirred. While I am trying to get in, someone else goes down ahead of me." Then Jesus said to him, "Get up! Pick up your mat and walk." At once the man was cured; he picked up his mat and walked.

I just want to share a couple of my thoughts:
  • By Jesus asking the man did he want to get well tells me that our "wellness" depends on our desire for wholeness.
  • Did this man find comfort in his sickness? Had he built his world around it?
  • How did he get to the pool everyday? Who carried him? I do not want to be friends with those people. I do not need people to carry me to the pool, but to the One who stirs the pool. Surround yourself with people that will carry you to Jesus.
  • Was the man looking for the pool to bring his healing or God. How many times do we looking for our healing from every other source except God.
  • "Get up!" It does not say that Jesus picked him up, or even helped him up. He told them to get up, and HE DID!
  • When God speaks healing we can either lay there and remain sick, or get up and walk in the Words of Jesus.

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v3 - To be set apart is to be separate from things. Separate from the things that separate us from God.

He hears my cries when no one else does. He hears me when I am alone. He knows what I need even when I do not know myself.

v4 - To anger and not sin, we have to turn our anger over to God. We have to release that when stirs up the wrong emotions.
Silence is one of the hardest things in life to do. It is our mouth that gets us ahead of God. If I can not be quite I can not hear from God myself.

v6 - God is the only true good. He is light. When He shines His light on us it gives us new perspective.

v8 - When we are being still (laying down) is when God can work. To sleep is to rest, to allow God to restore everything that we have used up. The peace of God allows us to walk through any situation or circumstances.

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Wednesday, July 7, 2010 Posted in | | 0 Comments »

2:12 - "Blessed are all who take refuge in Him." That is the most comforting thought anyone could have. For God alone is my refuge and my safe place.


3:1 - Focus matters. We can choose to focus on how many stand against us or we can focus on God and the love that He has for us. Focus is a choice and it determines our perspective.

3:3 - God is the one that protects us. He is our shield and fortress. His glory is what lifts us up. His glory is what causes us to rise above the situation that we are in.

3:5 - The Lord is the only thing that truly sustains our life. If we look anywhere else we will be disappointed.

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Tuesday, July 6, 2010 Posted in | | 0 Comments »

I just want to share some of my thoughts out of Psalms as I read through it over the next couple of months:

v1 - Counsel = influence. Who or what am I allowing to influence my life? Influence matters because it is what shapes me. Influence is the people or things that we place an importance on. I have to guard my influences.

v2 - You can not delight in what you are not reading. The Word of God can not permeate my mind if I am not putting it there.

v3 - The proof is in the fruit or the lack of fruit. Fruit is the evidence of what is in the inside of us. It will come out. Our fruit shows us where we are planted and how deep our roots are.

v5 - If I am standing in God and with God then there is nothing that I walk through or go through that will cause me not to stand.

v6 - I am grateful that God is always watching over me.

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Sunday, July 4, 2010 Posted in | | 0 Comments »