Archive for January, 2018

The Rock At The Bottom

Posted: January 9, 2018 in Uncategorized

This week we are gonna park our thought train on the topic of adversity and why God allows stuff that we don’t like or want, to happen in our lives.

If you want to walk on water, you have to get out of the boat. Obviously ‘getting out of your boat’ is just a metaphor for getting out of your comfort zone.

Sometimes God uses adversity to make us get out of the boat. I don’t know about you but if I’m chillin’ in a boat and it starts taking on water and sinking, I’m getting out quick like, you hear what I’m saying?

Sometimes we are so stuck in our boats, God has to poke a hole in it to provide the necessary motivation to get us on our feet and getting out of the boat.

So when something occurs in your life that seems like a negative thing, before you pray and ask God to fix it, take a moment to first ask him why he is allowing these circumstances in your life. Ask him what he is trying to tell you and what he wants you to learn from it.

Just because you go through trials does not mean God has forsaken you.
God allows us to experience adversity to bring about a change in us that will move us closer to him.

Sometimes God allows us to hit rock bottom to show us he’s the rock at the bottom.

Another reason he brings adversity into your life is to bring glory to Himself and to accomplish his plans. Joseph is a perfect example of this:

Joseph was sold by his brothers into slavery and landed in the house of a man named Potiphar.
While a slave he found favor in the eyes of his master and scripture says, the Lord was with Joseph. Isn’t that nice?

When Potiphar saw that the Lord was with him, Joseph found favor in Potiphar’s eyes and put him in charge of his household and everything he owned.

Eventually Potiphar’s wife developed a thing for Joseph, ick, and tried to get with him.
But Joseph refused by saying, “How could I do such a wicked thing and sin against God?”
What a good boy. I’m sure he was rewarded.

NOT

Joseph’s reward for doing the right thing….She screamed rape and he was thrown into prison.
But have no fear, scripture says that while he was in prison, “the Lord was with him.”

While in prison, Joseph found favor in the eyes of the warden and was put in charge of all the other prisoners. Yeah!

The Warden worried about nothing in Joseph’s care, say it with me boys and girls, “Because the Lord was with him.”

Joseph spent several years in prison…while the Lord was with him.
I don’t know about you, but I’d be thinking… ‘My brother’s sell me into slavery, but the Lord says he’s with me. My master’s wife falsely accuses me of wrongdoing, but the Lord is still with me.
Then I get thrown into prison for several years and forgotten about, but yep…the Lord is still with me.’

I’d be thinking, Hey Lord, could you go be with my brother’s for awhile? You feel me? I be like, ‘No no Lord I know you busy. I’m cool if you got to go for a bit. You know, be with somebody else and all. I’m cool. I’ll be alright.’

Joseph had to be wondering what the heck was going on, you know?

But eventually Joseph was freed from prison and became second in command in all of Egypt.

This led to him being in the right place at the right time, God’s timing, to save the 12 tribes of Judah.

And this is what Joseph said to his brothers, so listen up and get this:

Am I in the place of God? (He was saying I’m right where God needed me to be) You intended to harm me, but God intended it for good, to accomplish what is now being done, the saving of many lives.
(Genesis 50:19-20)

If Joseph had not faced adversity, Israel would have died out due to a severe famine.
God orchestrated the whole ordeal to bring about his will and plan.

And this was not a quick thing. Joseph did not suffer for a hot minute, then everything was cool. This went on for years.

We immediately get upset if things don’t go our way. We get mad at God or frustrated. We feel like he has forsaken us. That maybe we’ve done something to cause him to stop loving us.

But God allowed adversity in Joseph’s life to go on for years because he was going to do something really big out of it, as in save a whole nation.

So if you have been facing adversity for a long time, just rest in the knowledge that God is orchestrating something big that he will accomplish through you.
At remember this….God is with you through it all.

The second thing to remember is that Jesus never promised you that you were going to sail through this life unscathed. As a matter of fact, he promised the exact opposite. Chew on this for a minute:

Jesus said, “In this world you WILL have tribulation,
But be of good cheer, for I have overcome the world.”
(John 16:33)

Translation: Jesus is saying,
“Chill out man, I got this.”

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Did You Get Your Free App?

Posted: January 9, 2018 in Uncategorized

Did You Get Your Free App?

This week my wife and I took Kathy, an older friend from church, out to lunch. She emailed me her address followed by an extensive list of directions to her house, like people used to do in the dark ages.

I was thinking, that’s weird, why would she write out all these directions when everybody has GPS on their smartphones?

I used my GPS to get to her house without a problem. When we arrived, she asked me, “Did you get here alright? Were my directions good?”

I informed her that I just used my GPS on my phone. She told me she had gotten a smartphone but did not get the GPS. I told her all smartphones come with GPS. She had the smartphone with GPS but she had no idea of the power in the phone to get her to her desired destination. It could help her avoid accident scenes and get around traffic, but only if she utilized it.

Same For You

You have the ultimate GPS built right in you. The free app was installed immediately when you surrendered your life to Christ.

Your GPS is God’s Personal Spirit. But if you forget that you have it in you, you fail to utilize it. You will be like me, directionally challenged.

When we got to the restaurant, I told Kathy to let me see her phone. I pushed one button and her GPS popped up. I punched her address in and tapped the Go icon. A woman’s voice immediately started speaking to us.

On the way back to her house from the restaurant, Kathy began to tell me which way to go. I politely told her I already had my GPS going. She said the way I was going was not the way she normally took.

But then, remembering what I had told her earlier about the GPS having the ability to provide us with alternate routes to avoid traffic and accidents, she said, “Maybe there is an accident ahead that we can’t see but it can. Maybe it’s taking us around it to avoid it.”

We can trust the GPS to get us to our desired destination by directing us around things that would normally hinder us. We can only see what is right in front of us but the GPS can see everything. It knows what is 5 miles down the road. It can show us how to avoid these obstacles.

It has this ability because there are satellites thousands of miles above the earth that see the big picture. We might not understand why it tells us to take a road we don’t know, but it has its reasons.

When the GPS says, “In 500 feet, make a right,” I could choose to go left, right? I don’t have to follow the direction of the GPS. But because it knows I’m heading the wrong way, it will try to guide me back onto the right path.

It will politely say, “When possible, make a legal u-turn.” It will continue to say this if I ignore it. Eventually it says fine and gives me the route I’m heading in. It recalibrates the route.

My way may lead me into traffic or even take me the long way. My GPS always says, “You are on the fastest route”, whenever I type in an address and then follow the directions the GPS gives me. If I realize I’ve made a mistake I can deviate from the way I was going and the GPS will get me back on track again.

I told Kathy that’s how God works. We don’t always understand what He is doing or why He is sending us in what appears to be the wrong direction or out of the way.

We need to realize that God sees things we don’t. We see the circumstances right in front of us, God sees the big picture. We can choose to follow God’s direction but we can also choose not to.

He gives us the freedom to deviate from his direction. When we find ourselves in a jam and turn to him again, he is gracious and reroutes us to get us heading, once again, in the right direction.

God invented the first GPS thousands of years before the first Garmin, TOM TOM or  smartphone and it was way cooler than yours will ever be.

Check this out:
By day the Lord went ahead of them in a pillar of cloud
to guide them on their way and by night in a pillar of fire to give them light so that they could travel by day or night. Neither the pillar of cloud by day
nor the pillar of fire by night left its place in front of the people.
(Exodus 13:21-22 NIV)

Don’t let the wonder of what you just read be lost on you. Can you imagine how other drivers would respond if you were driving down the highway with a pillar of fire a hundred feet out in front of your windshield?

They would probably want to follow you to see what was going on. When people see the Holy Spirit, God’s GPS guiding you, they may want to follow just to see what is going on.

Do you have this free “app” installed? Have you surrendered to Jesus Christ yet? Maybe you did but you’ve stopped listening to his direction and now you are in a jam. He can fix that.

Maybe you’ve just never realized you had it. Maybe you’ve failed to utilize it. He can fix that too.

Tell God you are lost
Ask Him for an alternate route