Yes That Hurt…

“It’s your heart, not the dictionary, that gives meaning to your words”
Matthew 12:36

When visiting the doctor because of pain it never fails that they press on the sore spot saying “Does that hurt?” … “Ouch!!! Yes it does thank you very much!” It’s not the doctors who are the cause the pain they simply exposed it. The cause of the pain is the damage beneath that can’t be seen but can surely be felt.

Today’s verse helps us discover the source of some pain we’ve felt in our lives. This pain comes from words that others have spoken to us. Words that seemed innocent at the time but for some reason penetrated deeply. It wasn’t the meaning of the words that hurt…. it was the heart that delivered them. A bad heart causes words to pierce, bruise & cause pain.

Some of the sweetest and most lovely folk I’ve known have spoken some of the most destructive & damaging words I’ve heard. It’s the heart, not the dictionary meaning of the words, that destroys. If we don’t guard our hearts [Proverbs 4:23] we’ll end up speaking hurtful words to others. That’s something we definitely don’t want to do!

This week lets set our direction to the future. Matthew 12:36 continues saying “A good person produces good deeds and words season after season. An evil person is a blight on the orchard” Let’s make a real effort to speak words that empower, uplift & inspire. Let’s ensure these words are spoken from a great heart. A heart filled with true compassion, grace & mercy. A heart that’s looking to see the best in others & every situation. A heart that builds up and doesn’t pull down [2 Corinthians 10:8].


Where You Live…

“The lives of good people are brightly lit streets;
the lives of the wicked are dark alleys”
Proverbs 13:9

There is often something menacing & uncomfortable about dark alleys. They are narrow passages that lead to hidden areas at the backs of buildings. Things are often dumped & hidden in them. With the absence of light there’s no telling what dangers are lurking in them. Dark alleys are not where we’d choose to live. A brightly lit street is a much better option.

Today’s verse reminds us how we are to live our lives. We’re reminded that wicked peoples lives are dark alleys. Their lives are narrow, hidden and messy. The absence of light makes them perilous & filled with danger. Our lives, on the other hand, are brightly lit streets. Our lives are places of safety, surety & clear vision. Our lives are bright so danger cannot lurk in them.

We choose where we’ll live our lives. The more light, the more life. We must lift up God’s light so that it shines brightly upon every passageway & avenue of our being. As we are lit up, there are fewer places for danger to hide. Our days become brightly illuminated and our nights glow for a safe passage. Our lives become a brightly lit street.

This week is the time to lift up the light of God in our lives. It’s time to use God’s Word, the Bible, to shine more light on our lives. It’s time to lift His Word above every circumstance & difficulty that we encounter. We must allow it to illuminate the streets of our life so we don’t mistakenly stumble down the dark alleys of destruction. When we choose the brightly lit streets of God we won’t end up in the dark alleys with the wicked.

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You want it…

“So whatever you wish that others would do to you, do also to them…”
Matthew 7:12

One of the biggest questions asked in life is “How do I become successful?” This question is asked in business, family & ministry. It’s asked as a partner, parent & child. Any area in which we want to flourish, this question is posed. If we can’t answer it, we cannot increase and obtain the outcome we desire.

Today’s verse answers this question. We become successful by making other people successful. The old corporate saying of “You want it; Go get it” is destructive & unproductive as it is based in greed. The Bible teaches “If you want it; go give it”. It is based in generosity. As we are generous in helping others towards what they desire, we get what we desire.

Luke 6:31 says it this way “Do to others as you would have them do to you” We can’t be the voice of doubt & the bearer of nothing and still believe we’ll achieve our goals. Instead we must empower others to empower ourselves. Helping others to step up & into their destiny will produce more future, hope & joy in our lives than we could ever imagine.

This week is the week to begin the most successful season of your life so far. Let’s start investing whatever is needed for our success into others first. This will take many small sacrifices and some of our valuable time to accomplish. But as their future is empowered so too is our success. As we give, rather than grab, we step into the fullness of the purpose & plan God has prepared for us.


Daydreaming…

“Whoever watches the wind will not plant;
Whoever looks at the clouds will not reap”
Ecclesiastes 11:4

“Stop daydreaming” were the words that often echoed across the classroom from our schoolteacher. In class it was easy for our minds to drift away. Through the windows were trees to be climbed, hills to be conquered & freedom to be experienced. Our imagination easily took us to those places but the teacher knew exactly how to bring us back to focusing on the necessary task.

Today’s verse helps us to focus our lives. We should always try to pay attention to what God is doing rather than what’s happening around us. If we’re watching & looking at natural circumstances we’ll ultimately achieve very little. But when our eye is focused on God’s Work, we’re sure to achieve more than we can imagine.

It’s unproductive to sit around watching others working but doing nothing ourselves. It’s pointless sitting & staring into nothingness and still expecting great results. If we’re focusing on the wrong things and being unproductive we’ll ultimately receive little. When we stop focusing on the natural & start follow what God is doing, we’ll have future, hope & purpose.

This week let’s watch & look for what God is doing around us. There are God opportunities everywhere and we don’t want to miss them. Even if we’re feeling inadequate, under equipped or insufficient let’s not daydream. Let’s set our focus on God & build a better future with Him.

The message Bible put’s it this way…

Don’t sit there watching the wind. Do your own work.
Don’t stare at the clouds. Get on with your life.


About That…

Set your minds on things above, not that which is in The Earth”
Colossians 3:2

Have you ever set an alarm and woken only to discover it’d been set for the wrong time? It’s so frustrating. Now we’re running late & we’ll probably miss our appointment. At the very least we’ll have to rush & race to get to where we’re needed. If we’d taken a little more care & effort we would have set our alarm correctly & everything would have gone smoothly.

Today’s verse lets us know how to set our mind correctly so things go well. We are to think, judge & regulate ourselves according to heavens view rather than what’s happening here on earth. What we see, feel, touch, smell & hear are tangible but temporal. It’s the things we can’t see [Romans 4:17, Hebrews 11:3] that’ll form our future. So if we set our minds by our feelings we’ll take ourselves towards the wrong future.

Our focus needs to be on what’s above. We must ensure that our minds are set on things that’ll count for eternity rather than stuff that’ll rot & rust [Matthew 6:19]. We must live our lives for Godly purposes rather than for selfishness & self gain. When we focus correctly we set our minds to drive our future towards God’s plan & purposes.

This week lets avoid getting wrapped up in the things of this earth. Let’s stop focusing on all the stuff around us that has no eternal value. Instead let’s discover heavens viewpoint, from God’s Word; The Bible. Then let’s set our minds on those things. Let’s see every situation from God’s perspective rather than our own. That way our minds will be set correctly and we’ll be focused on things above today & everyday.


Need Some Help…

If God hadn’t been there for me, I never would have made it.
Psalm 94:17

If only life was like the movies!!! In the movies just when everything is at its worst, the superhero zooms in and saves the day. No matter how bad things were getting, he was right on time & he never disappointed. The whole theater would erupt with cheers of celebration as good prevailed over bad.

Today’s verse let’s us know about our superhero; that is our God. It explains the glorious timing of God in our lives. We’re reminded that He will always be there for us. He is continually helping us no matter how bad things appear. Even when our life seems to be at its very lowest point, He is there helping. He ensures that we make it through every impossible circumstance.

Jehovah Ezer; The Lord my help [Psalm 33:20] is one of the majestic names of God. This name describes a unique & specific part of God’s character. He is always ready to help us & He’ll intervene in our lives to ensure we make it through. Our responsibility is to acknowledge Him in this. We are to be thankful for His help just like the psalmist in today’s verse. We are to know that we can’t make it without God helping us.

This week lets get that help. Rather than doing life our own way let’s allow Jehovah Ezer to help us through. Lets take time to ask God to intervene in every impossible & difficult area of our life. Let’s ensure we’re living life God’s way, expecting God’s results. God wants to deliver us into a magnificent future. One that’s abundantly filled with His hope & joy. The future that God wants to help us get into!


Missed Steps…

“It is dangerous to have zeal without knowledge
Proverbs 19:2

Have you ever been racing down a set of stairs only to miss one? At best we stumble & recover. At worst we tumble, fall & do enduring damage to ourselves. If we’d only slowed up, even a little; we wouldn’t have had this result. Sure people came and helped. Sure in time we healed. But if we’d slowed down & made sure we had a good footing we could’ve had a much better outcome.

Today’s verse alerts us to take care and not to miss a step. King David is reminding us that zeal & enthusiasm can cause us to run speedily & recklessly ahead. Often ignoring the impending consequences. When we move too fast it becomes easy to miss a step, stumble and do ourselves harm. But when we add knowledge to our zeal we become surefooted, stable & secure.

Knowledge is easy to gain but it does take time. Knowledge can be sourced from those around us or from books & teaching. The most valuable knowledge is found in God’s Word, The Bible. When we use this manual for life, we obtain wisdom, knowledge & understanding for our journey ahead. With this knowledge we can move enthusiastically forward knowing we won’t stumble, fall or bring harm.

This week let’s add some knowledge to our zeal. Whatever area of life we’re excited about will always benefit from the knowledge & wisdom found in God’s Word. Once we arm ourselves with this we can start moving forward with excitement. Whether we are climbing or descending life’s steps, we’ll be able to move faster. We’ll be sure footed on the firm foundation of God’s word.


In The Middle…

For where two or three gather in my name,
I am there among them.
Matthew 18:20

Have you ever been tightly seated between people on a plane, train or in a car? No matter how hard we try to keep to ourselves, we still touch someone else. Whether we breathe in or push back the result is the same; we’re touching. Everyone is aware of it and this closeness remains until the destination is reached.

Today’s verse describes a tight situation that we want to be in. Jesus said that whenever we get together in His Name He’s going to be the man in the middle. He’s going to be the one touching everyone else. He’s going to remain in touch until our destination is reached. No matter how near or how far it is, Jesus is going to be in the middle until it’s changed.

Some believers miss out on their breakthrough because they stubbornly refuse to join with others in agreement & pray. Whenever we come together in His Name we receive an amazing & powerful promise. Jesus enters into the very middle of our situation. He touches every part & person involved. He stays there until it is fully worked through and everyone has headed off to their futures.

This week, let’s grab someone else to agree with us in prayer. It matters little how major or minor our need is, Jesus wants to be involved. He wants to be tightly seated in the middle of every situation. He wants us to surround Him while He reaches out to touch every other part. In no time at all He’ll bring change to our futures as He transforms our tomorrow into a vibrant & exciting new day.


Never Alone…

God, your God, is with you every step you take.”
Joshua 1:9b

What scares people the most? Terrorism? Cancer? Death? Unemployment? There are plenty of things that could top the fear list but the number one thing seems to be loneliness. 6 out of every 10 people say they often feel lonely. 1/3 of these have little help to get past their feelings. Loneliness can be like a prison cell, a prison cell we’re not meant to be in.

Todays verse reminds us that we are never alone. Every day, every step of the way, God is with us. He doesn’t leave us [Hebrews 13:5], even if our journey gets difficult, distasteful or painful. He is with us step, by step, by step. He helps us forward into a better & more prosperous future.

Now, in the earlier part of our verse, we discover some keys to breaking through. The believer is reminded to remain strong & courageous. We’re to confidently let go of the prison bars of fear & discouragement that contain us. We must break out & realize that God is ready to walk us into our future. He’ll be there every step of the way so we will never be alone.

This week is a week to break free. No matter what fears & discouragements we may be facing let’s not isolate ourselves. Let’s be strong & courageous instead. Let’s break out and step into our future. Let’s remember that God, our God; the one who called everything we see into place [Hebrews 11:3], is with us every step of the way. He’ll walk us through to a victory that is far beyond what we could even ask or imagine. [Ephesians 3:20]


Don’t Fake It…

“Love from the center of who you are; don’t fake it”
Romans 12:10

A fake banknote is worthless when compared to the genuine. The same goes for artwork, jewellery, fashion or brand name items. If they’re not the genuine articles then they’re fakes. If they’re fake they don’t have value. Without value they are worthless. The key is in discerning the real from the fake; the valuable from the worthless.

Today’s verse lets us know how to be genuine towards each other. We’re simply told not to fake our love. We’re to let our love flow from the very center of who we are. There’s no need to manufacture & force our love towards others. We should simply allow it to flow. When we do this others will quickly discern that it is true love and not a cheap imitation.

Many people continually hold up a facade or mask trying to hide their true self. They keep portraying a fake version hoping others won’t notice. But fakes are easily noticed. To be genuine we must be vulnerable. To be vulnerable we must allow God’s love (the love that’s deep inside of us), to genuinely flow to those around us.

This week let’s ensure that we are the genuine articles. Let’s put down our mask and allow the love of God to simply flow out. Let’s ensure that those around us aren’t being duped by a fake. Let’s allow them to feel the value & worth of our true love. It’s the love that flows from the very center of who we are.