Archive for the ‘Spiritual’ Category
Years ago, on one of my daughter’s summer vacation trips to Mississippi, she and her girlfriends were in church. So the adolescents decided to “get happy” pretending that they had been filled with the Holy Ghost.
As they were allegedly “shouting,” the little girls started rolling on the floor. Much to her chagrin, when my daughter opened her eyes, she saw her perturbed Grandmother standing before her. Her Grandma Phoebe with her Bible in her hands sternly said to her namesake, “Little Phoebe, if you don’t get up off that floor, I am gonna tear your tail up! You don’t play with God!”
Telling the story invokes laughter now, but it wasn’t funny to my daughter at the time.
It was quite embarrassing.
It did however teach her about the sacredness of God and provided a lifelong spiritual lesson. Galatians 6:7 states, “Do not be deceived. God cannot be mocked. A man reaps what he sows.”
Although this story is one of her favorite spiritual childhood memories and Grandma stories about her trips down South, she holds dear Galatians 6:9 as a spiritual cornerstone. “Let us not become weary in doing good, for at the proper time, we will reap a harvest if we do not give up.”
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Words, words, words!
You have to think them before you say them.
So guards your thoughts.
Words can uplift you.
They can also bring you down!
That small tongue given the wrong words has the capacity to produce big damaging results/consequences.
Once you spit them out, you cannot take them back.
Can you remember hurtful words that were said to you years ago?
Likewise, you can also remember the words that inspired, encouraged, and motivated you!
If you can remember what others said to you, they can undoubtedly remember what you said to them.
Proverbs 21:23 tells us that “Whoever keeps his mouth and his tongue keeps himself out of trouble.”
Therefore, select and speak your words carefully.
The ears that hear them will for sure – retain them.
Conscientiously, think of their impact which can echo in someone’s ears, mind, and heart for a lifetime!
Simply said – Be careful about what you say!
Quote: Pastor Joel Osteen, Lakewood Church.
The day has finally arrived!
All of the traditional gentleness and happiness of Christmas permeates throughout the air.
Some celebrate the “White Christmas” that they dreamed of having. Peppermint candy canes, yummy gingerbread houses, glowing scented candles, stuffed Christmas stockings are everywhere.
The house smells of love! Gift wrapped presents with decorative bows are marvelously scattered under the Christmas tree. Family and friends are displaying bountiful love.
Children are thrilled at what Santa brought them. With Rudolph and his reindeer companions parked in a sleigh on top of the roof, some of the younger ones claim they saw Mr. Claus easing down the chimney!
The kitchen is filled with the aromas of Honey baked ham, turkey and dressing, home made rolls, sweet potato pies, chocolate cake, egg nog, and countless flavorful delectable dishes.
“Joy to the World” and timeless Christmas carols – one after another – are being played. (Silent Night, “The Temptations” style is my favorite).
A galaxy of colorful scenic lights and nativity scenes are on every street corner and fill every room of our homes.
Yes, Christmas is a day of giving; a day of love; but more importantly – the day that we celebrate the birth of the Messiah, Jesus Christ.
He is the reason for the season!
“O come let us adore him.” Let’s rejoice and give thanks as we pray for our well being and that of our loved ones/families, the less fortunate, the lonely … and for a better world.
Let us show immense thoughtfulness, incredible caring, and undying love to one another!
Let us remember and never forget the memories of those that we love who are not with us in the flesh, but who are smiling as they watch us from the Heavens! Their love for us and ours for them is forever and a day.
As “Hark, the Herald Angels” sing “Glory to the new born king” – “Let there be peace on earth!”
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Lord, I come to you today in prayer.
My thoughts go places that they should not.
My mind thinks things that should not enter my space.
My heart pumps feelings that I wish did not exist.
I try hard to be descent, fair, kind, and respectful.
I need your helping hands God!
I ask you Father to “order my steps in your word dear Lord. Lead me and guide me everyday; teach me your will.”
Help me to be the best Mother, Granny, daughter, sister, aunt, niece, cousin, friend, author, professional, and person that I can be!
Help me to walk in the footsteps of goodness!
Show me how to forget and forgive.
Forgive me for my indiscretions.
Put righteousness and kindness in my spirit.
Place the rights words in my mouth.
Anchor my soul in the streams that you see fit.
Let my conduct, speech, and all that I do glorify your name.
Keep my thoughts wholesome.
Allow me to have helping hands to support those in need spiritually, financially, emotionally and in all ways.
Let love flow from me like water downstream.
Surround me with people who love me and that I love.
Keep me on bended knee so that I stay prayerful and honor your holy name.
Guide me Lord.
Stay by my side.
I know that I can achieve greatness when you walk with me Lord!
Thank you Father for your love, grace, mercy, protection, guidance and all that you have done for my family and me!
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When I left my Mississippi home in my twenties to explore career opportunities, I excitedly eloped from the cotton fields and the country landscape to the skyscrapers, bright lights / big city surroundings. My résumé was figuratively glued to my hand; ready to be presented in a jack flash minute. I was as thrilled about the geographical change as I was about the career opportunities. As I pondered what position would be worthy of my talents, I couldn’t wait to establish roots.
My Mother was eager for me to be a productive contributor to my life’s expenses as well. Encouraging me to explore the secular world, she gave me stimulating, unforgettable admonition on another front. “Make sure that you join church up there. Everybody needs their name on a church’s roll.”
After I became a productive member of the work force, she routinely reminded me of her spiritual advice. “If you can get up and go to your workplace five days a week, it would be sinful to sleep in on Sundays. Get up and go into the house of the Lord. Child, I don’t want to get to Heaven and not see you there!”
Thank you Momma for annoying me! You definitely made me a better person in so many areas. I joined church in Cleveland, Ohio and I am there (God willing) every Sunday just like you taught me.
Unbeknownst to me, I found myself providing the same admonition to my children. Distinctively in 2002, before returning to Cleveland, I remember telling my daughter when I dropped her off at college in Atlanta, “Remember what I taught you. Do the same things here that you did at home. You went to church at home, do the same here.” My daughter joined church in Atlanta; she attended religiously. Recognizably similar, those were the same words that my Mother told me; just uttered differently. Wow! We do become our Mothers, don’t we?
Photo Reprint: Bethlehem No. 2 MB Church, Shaw, Mississippi; Photographer – Tom Rankin.
In the beginning God created the family. Scriptural counsel clearly outlines the foundation for families when Eve was created as a companion for Adam; when they were told to be fruitful and multiply; and to bring up their children with an obedience to the Word.
The Bible defines the familial roles for husbands, wives, and children.
Indeed, the family is God’s masterpiece; a testament of his love.
Families provide love, cohesiveness, and unity.
As a team, families confront and deal with concerns and problems.
There is strength and comfort in numbers. Who knew that better than our Heavenly Father?
I love, adore, cherish, and respect my family!
I have always seen my role to maternally and solidly provide guidance, wisdom, protection, and teaching to my family. I pray that I measure up to God’s standards.
I also ask and pray for God’s love, support, direction, and blessings as we as a family lovingly, diplomatically, and obediently move progressively forward as a united front following his Word. We need each other today, tomorrow, always!
Prayer strengthens us; it always has; it always will! Let the family say Amen!
Photo credit: www.allaboutGod.com
Worry, stress, pressure, anxieties, fear … Life is full of them and other emotional hiccups.
We can’t escape them.
What we can do is learn how to cope. That is where our faith kicks in; where our confidence in the Lord and belief in his Word to guide and comfort us come into play.
God will never leave us.
As Dottie Peoples sings, “He is an on time God.” He is right on time! We can lean on God 24/7.
His Word provides the answers no matter what the problem.
The following Scriptures can offer encouragement and provide inspiration and strength as we cope with life’s challenges. These scriptures can uplift us when we are down and out.
Let’s take a scroll.
10 The name of the LORD is a fortified tower; the righteous run to it and are safe.
5 Trust in the LORD with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding;6 in all your ways submit to him, and he will make your paths straight.
10 So do not fear, for I am with you; do not be dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you; I will uphold you with my righteous right hand.
27 Peace I leave with you; my peace I give you. I do not give to you as the world gives. Do not let your hearts be troubled and do not be afraid.
33 “I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world.”
1 God is our refuge and strength, an ever-present help in trouble. 2 Therefore we will not fear, though the earth give way and the mountains fall into the heart of the sea, 3 though its waters roar and foam and the mountains quake with their surging.
2 Timothy 1:7
7 For the Spirit God gave us does not make us timid, but gives us power, love and self-discipline.
8 I keep my eyes always on the LORD. With him at my right hand, I will not be shaken.
22 Cast your cares on the LORDand he will sustain you; he will never let the righteous be shaken.
1 Peter 5:7
7 Cast all your anxiety on him because he cares for you.
3 You will keep in perfect peace those whose minds are steadfast, because they trust in you.
14 The LORD is my strength and my defense ; he has become my salvation. 15Shouts of joy and victory resound in the tents of the righteous: “The LORD’s right hand has done mighty things! 16 The LORD’s right hand is lifted high; the LORD’s right hand has done mighty things!”
114 You are my refuge and my shield; I have put my hope in your word. 115Away from me, you evildoers, that I may keep the commands of my God!
25 I am laid low in the dust; preserve my life according to your word.
50 My comfort in my suffering is this: Your promise preserves my life.
71 It was good for me to be afflicted so that I might learn your decrees.
1 I call on the LORD in my distress, and he answers me.
There is an old Negro spiritual called, “Jesus is on the mainline. Call him up.” Whether you use your land line, cell phone, or two tin cans, you’ll never hear, “Leave a message!”
What a relief to know that our calls will be answered!
What a blessed assurance to know that our calls will not go into voice mail!
I just want to say, “Thank you Lord for not leaving me; for listening; for keeping your loving arms around my family and me!”
Happy Sunday! Blessings!
According to the Bible Study Tools, the below are brief references / excerpts / scriptures of the 25 most frequently read Bible verses. Here goes:
Jeremiah 29:11 – God’s Plans…
Psalm 23 – The Lord is My Shepherd…
1 Co 13: 4-8 – The definition of love …
Phil 4:13 – “I can do everything through him who strengthens me.”
John 3:16 – “For God so loved the world that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believes in him shall not perish but have everlasting life.”
Romans 8:28 ..in all things, God works for the the good of those who love him..
Isaiah 41:10 – Do not fear for I am with you …
Prov 3:5,6 -“Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your Understanding. In all ways acknowledge him and he will make your path straight.”
Ps 46:1 – God is our refuge and strength …
Galatians 5:22,23 – The Fruit of the Spirit …
Hebrew 11:1 – “Faith is being sure of what we have for and certain of what we do not see.”
2 Tim 1:7 – For God …gave us a spirit of power, of love, of self discipline.
1Co 10:13 …he will not let you be tempted beyond what you can bear …
Prob 22:6 – “Train up a child in the way he should go and when he is old he will not turn from it.”
Isaiah 40:31 – Hope in the Lord …
Joshua 1:9 …God will be with you wherever you go.
Philippians 4:6 – “Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and petition with thanksgiving present your requests to God.”
Hebrew 12:2 … Jesus …sat down at the right hand of the throne.
John 10:10 – The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy, I have come that they may have life …
Zephaniah 3:17 – The Lord your God is with you…
2 Co 5:17 – “Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation, the old has gone, the new has come.”
James 5:16 – Confess your sins to each and pray for each other …
Deut 31:6 …God will never leave you or forsake you.
1Co 16:13 “Be on guard, stand firm in the faith, be men of courage, be strong.”
Matt 11:28 – “Come to me, all who are weary and burdened and I will give you rest.”
Don’t let your Bible collect dust; don’t let it sit on the bookshelf.
Communicate with God!
Get to know his word.
What scriptures have you committed to memory?
What scriptures can uplift you when all else fails?
As for me, “I can do all things through God who strengthens me!”
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Thanksgiving starts the holiday countdown. We start preparing meals, giving gifts, attending parties, and being festive. Happiness and joy fill the air.
But … what about those people who don’t have anyone to celebrate or share their time with? What do they do? How can we help them?
There are so many pointers that we can give to those who are lonely at the holiday times.
Take a look.
1. Understand that you are not all alone.
2. Rethink your expectations.
3. Get connected.
4. Cultivate gratitude.
5. Give to others.
6. Examine your feelings.
7. Remember, alone doesn’t mean lonely.
8. Change up things.
9. Make someone else happy.
10. Don’t be afraid to initiate. Reach out to family and friends.
11. The holidays are not a time to open up old wounds.
12. Limit how much you take on.
13. Send care packages.
14. Volunteer. Get involved.
15. When no one is around, you always have God.
For those who have recently lost loved ones, these holidays will certainly feel different because they will not be here as they traditionally have been to cut the turkey at Thanksgiving, open presents at Christmas, or bring in the New Year. Let’s pray for strength.
In closing, here’s a shout out to those people who may feel lonely and a little down and out this holiday season.
Don’t have a pity party.
As difficult as it may be, be uplifted; be thankful; stay prayerful.
May God Bless you and relieve your loneliness during this holiday season.
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“Do not judge and you will not be judged. Do not condemn and you will not be condemned. Forgive and you will be forgiven.” Luke 6:37
Who are you to judge?
Who made you the superior watchdog?
Did you know that in God’s eyes that you are not any better than anyone else? Don’t let your valuable material possessions and fat bank account fool you!
Because of a misguided spirit of superiority, some people spend too much time monitoring and judging other folks while letting their business go astray.
In fact, many wait on others to make mistakes so that they can be the first to bring down their gavel pronouncing condemnation!
Sad, but true!
There are a few things that all should realize.
1. First, only God can judge because he sees all actions; those that are visible as well as the hidden and disguised.
2. Secondly, if we properly utilize our time to keep our lives on track, we won’t have the time to judge others.
3. Thirdly, it is a huge job to do the right thing. It is tough to stay focused and remain on course.
4. Lastly, we all want to be able to stand before God on judgment day and have him say, “Well done, my good and faithful servant!”
In other words, because of the weakness of the flesh, it is easier to do what’s wrong instead of what’s right.
In Matthew 26:41, we find –
“Watch and pray so that you will not fall into temptation. The spirit is willing, but the flesh is weak.”
We have to constantly work at it.
There are so many challenges.
Minding our own business is one!
Forgiveness is another.
When people error, it is critical that we possess a forgiving spirit.
We must stop looking at others to find their dirt.
Isn’t it a monumental task to just keep our “house” clean and life in order?
If you are like most people, that is a job in and of itself.
Do your work and let God do his!
Judge not; condemn not; forgive – yes!
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