Moving Forward Living and Loving Life!

Moving forward living and loving life!

If you are living in the past it will destroy your future. If you are living in the future it will dilute you present. If you live in the present without valuing your past and without vision for your future you will be detoured from the real success and significance of life.

Living in the past is about as unhealthy as it is to stay in bed and think your rest is making you strong. Yes you are getting rest but you are missing out on the elements of life needed to be whole. The past is a great weight that should never be carried today. Each and every day we make decisions that are wrong or walk through doors that should have been avoided. Each day brings sorrow, hurt, disappointment, sadness, defeat, pain, breakups, and failure. But what about the good things we have experienced? Most of us cannot remember those events for bearing the load of the other stuff. Human nature will leave behind the good stuff to try to fix the broken. The good stuff makes us want to look forward the bad stuff makes us want to go back to change or fix it. No one wants to hire, marry, collaborate, partner or run with someone carrying all that baggage. You cannot go as fast, think as clear, move as much or achieve anything carting around the junk yard you are hoarding. No one will feel compassion for your bad luck and if they feel anything it is sympathy for your fate. No one partners with someone’s yesterday’s. until you cut loose from your past your success is doomed.

Then there are those who can do nothing today because it could disrupt their future. If you are living in the future it will dilute you present. Daydreamers are not the same as visionaries. Your future plans are wonderful if they are seen as a goal that has a path. Your path is your present. If your present is stymied by all the lofty dreams of your future then you will never have or feel the impact of the right now. The relationships you build are the ones you have in front of you right now. The experience you bring to the future is the things you are doing and doing well right now. The partnerships of your future are hinged on the collaborations you are living with right now. The success of your future will be determined by the failures you fix right now. The impact of your future is determined by the impact you are making on others right now. Today is a day to plant the seeds for a harvest tomorrow. It may be that young man you open a door for today is the same CEO who opens a door for you tomorrow. It may be the child that you help is the same man that helps you tomorrow. It could be the children you nurture in your home today are the same ones who will not fail to visit an aging parent tomorrow. It could be the woman you cherish as your wife today is the same lady by your bed as you pass from here to your reward. Your success and significance will be determined by how you mine and work through your today’s.

Last but certainly not least is your future. If you live in the present without valuing your past or without vision for your future you will be detoured from the real success and significance of life.

Learn from your past so that the same errors are not repeated. The best teacher in life is experience. There are two ways to get experience. One, live and move though it. Second, listen to others and learn from the failures and success of others. Truthfully not many people are smart enough to do the latter. Let your past be your teacher but not your guide. Never let him be your leader. Let your vision be your leader and guide. Have goal marks to reach toward . Who cares if you reach all of them. If you do then you dreams were too low. Your goals in life make you stronger, bigger and better. the lack of goals will make you weaker, smaller and less than your potential. Your goals will keep you going on the right paths and choosing the right strategies. Too many people allow the paths and strategies to determine their future. Your goals will make you choose the right paths or create new paths. When I hear people say, “We are building the bridges as we go or making the paths as they come!” I see folks who are either too stupid to know that goals determine bridge building and strategies or they know where they are going and don’t want you to know until it is too late to change course. Never drink the koolaide of people who will not release to you the true ingredients in the glass. To vote for a legislative bill without reading the bill and being asked to trust those who wrote is suicide. You and I must always know where we are going and why we are going there. Let your values determine your goals and let your goals always determine your paths or strategies.

The success and significance of your life is in your hands. Never ever allow people, systems, organizations, parents, children, friends or enemies to think for you. You and you alone are responsible for where you end up at the end of your journey. Live life and love the life you live!20130609-102915.jpg

Fear is a Liar

Fear is a Liar

My friend, Pastor Jeff Calhoun snapped a pic somewhere that got me to thinking. The words were, “Fear is a Liar!” Fear is a horrible liar! The opposite of “fear” most people think is faith. But that is not true. The opposite of Fear is love!

1 john 4:18 [18] There is no fear in love; but perfect love casteth out fear: because fear hath torment. He that feareth is not made perfect in love.

So if fear is a liar and the opposite of fear is love then the way to destroy fear is to love. Think about it a moment. How can you fear someone you love? How can you be afraid someone is going to hurt you when you know they love you? How can you worry if someone is going to take something from you if you love? It is impossible to be hurt intentionally by anyone who loves you!

But if someone is causing you to fear then that is indication of one of two things. Either you do not love them and need to be perfected in love to remove the fear. The other thing is you know they do not love you and you know that, by how they make you feel.

You can deal with how you feel about others by loving them. Love of this kind is not an emotional love. This type of love is a commitment brought about by a decision based on obedience to Christ. I will love others not because they are good to me or are lovable people but because Christ commands me as His Disciple to love others. I may not even like them or trust them but I choose to love them and treat them as Christ would treat them.

I cannot change how others treat me. They can cause me to fear and be apprehensive of them, something I have no control over. When others try to manipulate you, being a Christian does not make you their whipping boy or door mat. You are not a rebel because you act like a man. Nor are you less than a man if you are not coward by their actions. You may choose to love them but at the same time be wary of them. You cannot change others by acclimating to their whims or manipulations. Sometimes the best way to love someone is stand up in their face and force them to see themselves. I choose to love you but I also choose to love you enough to tell you the hard truth I see in you.

Yes fear is a liar and love is the truth! I choose the truth and refuse the lies.

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Real Eyes Realize Real Lies

Real Eyes realize real lies

“Real Eyes realize real lies” was on the front of a young ladies tee shirt in Lafayette, Lousiana. I was captured by the truth of the statement. People that lie are hiding behind their fears. People that lie that have no fear are evil. That is right evil. It does not matter that they are in the church or outside the church. Lies are demonic!

If those lies are because of fears the lies can paralyze you. It may that some person or organization is trying to keep you from stepping up and not showing them up. Step up and their lies are exposed. It may be that lies are told to intimidate you so that your brilliance is dulled. You could never shine brighter than the liars lest your brightness reveal their stupidities. If you live with the lies you will find yourself unhealthy and sickly. Your spirit will war with your flesh. Something in you says, “something is wrong!” But you cannot put your finger on it. Get alone with God in prayer and in the Bible. If others do not line up with the Word and the spirit then draw the line. Always follow The Lord and His Word and courage will manifest itself. You must identify the truth or you will never find your true identity. The truth can be painful even to those who expose it. But not as painful as a life chained by fear.

If the lies you are believing is a thinking system then expose it and move on. Examples may be that you trusted in a system, organization, a plan that is not reaping the results you thought. Maybe you thought a Masters Degree would get you the better Church or job. But you find yourself frustrated because no doors are open. Maybe you trusted in a church but the practice is not what you understand from the scriptures. Maybe it is leadership you once looked up to and now find those same individuals with shadows. It could be that you are just a timid person that finds decisions difficult to make. So you follow the crowd letting others make the decisions. But all the road signs are leading you to the wrong destination. As one man said, “If ten million people believe on a bad idea, it is still a bad idea!” Don’t drink the koolaid prepared in the secret kitchens of others. Again get in the Word and pray for the truth. Once you know the truth decide to follow it. You do not have to take large steps. It may be that all you do first is stop following, turn around and eventually find your path back to what is right. Once you do this, the courage of that decision will give you the answer for the future steps.

Fear is a horrible master! Don’t allow fear to make you his slave. God called you to be free. Close your ears to the jeers and move to the truth. Yes, Real eyes, realize real lies! Real men follow truth and never the lies!

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Memorial Day

Memorial Day is a sad day to me. I know it is a vacation day for all of us. It is a family day to get together and enjoy a cookout,some watermelon and homemade ice cream.

But this day is a day to remember the fallen soldiers of our country. To all of us it is a national day of remembrance and appreciation for the ultimate sacrifice of their life. For many among us it is more personal. A dad or mom, brother or sister or son or daughter is not coming home. Life as we know it will go in because life as they knew it ended. Today we are enjoying what they sacrificed to never get to enjoy.

So today, from my family we stop to remember and to be thankful. To those who have lost a loved one we appreciate and honor your loves ones and your sorrow.

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Everything Big Starts With Something Little

Everything Big Starts With Something Little

All of God’s great people in the Bible were faithful in the small things. In Matthew 25 Jesus told the parable of the talents. In it He referred to the one servant who had taken his master’s money and multiplied it. In verse 23 his master said to that man, …Well done, good and faithful servant; thou hast been faithful over a few things, I will make thee ruler over many things: enter thou into the joy of thy lord. In Zechariah 4:10 the Lord asks the prophet, For who hath despised the day of small things?…. There is a powerful principle in taking small steps.

Many people are not moving with God today simple because they were not willing to take the small steps He placed before them. If you have received a call into any particular area, you should leap at the opportunity – no matter how small – to move in the direction in which the Lord has called you. If you are called to be a youth pastor, and are sitting at home waiting for an invitation from some large church, you should know that it will never come. You need to find the first young person you can, put your arm around him, and begin to minister to him

Don’t be afraid to take small steps. The Bible promises us that if we are faithful in small matters, one day we will be rulers over m any larger things.

The impossible, many times, is just simply the untried.

I can remember a time in my life when I was literally frozen with fear at what God had called me to do. It seemed so huge a task that I was unable to bring myself to face it. A friend came to me and spoke two words that broke that paralysis in my life. He said simple, “Do something!” Don’t worry about the goal, just take the steps that take you past the starting point and soon you’ll get to a point of no return. As you climb higher, you’ll be able to see much farther.

We should all learn to grow wherever we’re planted.

As you begin, don’t be afraid. Eric Hoffer said: “Fear of becoming a has-been keeps some people from becoming anything.” Every great idea is impossible from where you are starting today. But little goals add up, and they add up rapidly. Most people don’t succeed because they are too afraid even to try. They don’t begin because of that old fear of failure.

Many times the final goal seems so unreachable that it keeps us from even making an effort. But, once you’ve made your decision and have started, you are more than half-way there. God will begin with you today – no matter what your circumstances. Just think how thankful you would be if you lost everything you have right now and then got it all back again. Wouldn’t you be ready to go ? Choose to think eternally, but act daily.

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Dads Leading the Family in Missions

“Dads Leading the Family in Missions.”

When it comes to leadership it has been stated that it is better to be “caught than taught!” The father in the home serves many roles; breadwinner, protector, role model and of equally importance is that of leader. Teaching children how to live and lead in their world is not the responsibility of educators from outside the home. Those responsibilities rest squarely on the shoulders of the parents. The father ultimately has the greatest impact on the children in leading them to form character and beliefs. With this in mind, dads should consider their actions so that they can look back with pride on their leadership and its effects in the lives of their children.

When it comes to missions, a father should be very intentional to expose his children to the responsibilities of a disciple of Christ: to reach others in our world with the gospel. In our fellowship we are fortunate that the Assemblies of God finds its foundation in both the gospel and the proclamation of that gospel to every lost man. This missions heart finds itself in our Christian education with lessons of why and how we reach the lost. It is also found in our children’s ministries with BGMC and youth ministries with Speed the Light. Encouraging children to participate in “buddy barrel” by making faith promises will build the child’s faith, so that God can use even a child to impact his world. What an impression for each child to have the opportunity to become a modern day lad watching his fish and bread transformed into miracles.

The same is true with teenagers and their faith promise commitment in Speed the Light’s ministry. Very few things can change a teenagers mind when he or she determines to make a difference with their missions giving. Supercharge this experience with an AIM trip to ride in a Speed the Light vehicle on the mission field and the teenager will become a lifetime mission’s giver, if not a missionary!

In the Assemblies of God, men participate in the ministry of”Light for the Lost”. This program provides literature and electronic communication, which is Gospel concentrated and placed in the hands of missionaries to reach the lost. Dads, who participate, teach their children the value of STL and BGMC giving.

Fathers should lead the way in faith promise giving when their churches have missions conventions. While it is good and scriptural to be private about what one commits in the public faith promise meeting. That process should not just be an emotional moment when the faith promise cards are passed out. It would be good for the family to discuss what each family member is planning to contribute the next year to missions. Make sure that each family member is a part of the sacrifice of the missions giving program of their church. Also, one of the parts of the faith promise experience is to allow the Holy Spirit to speak to your heart about a faith promise. This aspect should be explained so that children understand the difference between budgeting for missions giving and faith in missions giving which is beyond one’s ability to do except for the Lord’s doing something unexpected and miraculous in the family’s income. When a child sees and experiences the family making commitments based on the Holy Spirit’s leading and then sees miracles in finance they will never be the same.

It is a privilege to receive awards which express appreciation for one’s missions giving. Maybe the greatest joy is not the receiving of an award or even the joy of giving the gift. For even the scriptures teach, “it is more blessed to give than to receive.” I think the greatest joy in this life is to experience your children receive recognition for something you influenced them to love and participate in, by your leadership as their dad! Proverbs 22: 6 says, “Train a child in the way he should go; even when he is old he will not depart from it.” Sir, you may be developing the next greatest missionary of our culture; lead them well!

Commitment to the Right Things

I am glad to be a Christian. The group that is called Christian is not so much a “in group” as they are a “called out Group.” We are called out of the world and into Christ. This group is made up of all denominations, cultures and countries. The thing that unites them is their faith in the shed blood of Christ. This group is committed to the teachings of Christ. So much so that when some of Its members commit they commit to follow Him and His teaching even to suffering and death.

I get concerned when groups of people confuse the commitment to being a Christian with Patriotism to a country or devotion to a denomination. I am a very patriotic and very proud of my country. As far as Denominations, I am devoted member of one. But whether country or denomination I lose my allegiance when either violates my faith in Christ. Our hope is in Christ alone! I will adhere to my countries constitution and honor it’s flag. I will be true to my denomination or fellowships constitution and serve it with enthusiasm. But I will serve Christ by being true to His Church and His teachings.