Category Archives: positive

The Ministry Of Presence!

“For, brethren, ye have been called unto liberty; only use not liberty for an occasion to the flesh, but by love serve one another.” -Galatians 5:13

Some times the greatest gift that we have to give to someone else is simply the gift our our presence with nothing added and nothing taken away. I’m not sure if you are like me or not, but I am one of those people that often thinks “I’ve got to fix it!”, but the Spirit is teaching me that I don’t have to fix it and there are going to be times that I can’t fix it, but I can almost always be present and my presence is more than enough.

My wife used to come home from school and she would start telling me about her day and the challenges that she faced and I would immediately start telling her what she should and should not have done. One day while we were having this very traditional back and forth, she just put her hand up and said: “I don’t need you to be my preacher, pastor or friend, I just need you to listen and let me get it out.” And from that day on, I learned the value of a sore tongue, because I have almost bitten a hole in my tongue while biting it to try and keep my mouth shut.

One of my teachers in middle school used to say: “God gave you two ears and one mouth, so you should do twice as much listening as you do talking.” There are times when we worry ourselves ragged trying to figure out what to say or what to do to help someone else, when honestly all they need is our presence. Just to know that someone cares is often more than enough to get a person through what they are doing their best to get through.

I ran into the above little poem about ministry and it reminded me that each and every one of us have the opportunity to minister to others.

We can minister to others by taking the time to listen. We can minister to others by looking for and accentuating the joy. We can minister to others by helping someone else, even when we feel like we are the ones that needs the help. We can minister to others by asking God to use us to share His love and blessing with others. We can minister to others by putting our arm around someone’s shoulders, giving them a hug around the neck or maybe a pat on the back. We can minister to others by encouraging them by finding the positive that has to be in there somewhere. We can minister to others by praying for them and with them. We can minister to others by serving them and meeting whatever need we can. We can minister others by comforting them with our words and actions.

Ministry at it’s best is about our presence. Some time, most of the time, just being there is more than enough…

Life Goes On!

Most of my days, now a days are pretty good. Looking back on my life from this vantage point makes me realize that most of my days have always been pretty good, but I often failed to see it and appreciate it, because I was too easily distracted by stuff that really was not that important, stuff that I often made a big deal out of, but that in the grand scheme of things, stuff that really didn’t matter.

Grudges will often cause us to miss the blessing of a good day. We trade away our happiness to hold onto resentment, judgment and condemnation. The real tragedy is that this is often with people that we say we love and care for. How sad to waste the beautiful gift of happiness by not taking time to appreciate and enjoy all that God has blessed us with. When I hold my 6 month old Grand daughter Addi Jo close in my embrace, everything else just seems to fade away, helping to remind me that there is what I think matters and what really matters and they are often miles a part.

An unwillingness to say “I’m Sorry!“ or to receive an “I’m Sorry!” can steal our joy and keep us from the day and life of blessing we were created for. Forgiveness does bless the other person by setting them free, but it also blesses you by keeping you from becoming enslaved in misery that loves company. If we mess up, then we need to admit it, learn from it and grow on. If others mess up, then we need to do our best to love them through it and if they are making any progress what so ever, then acknowledge and appreciate that by blessing them and giving God the glory.

Selfishness and greed can cause us to focus on ourselves and miss the blessing of the others that God has placed around us to make our life more special. The Scriptures teach that nothing really belongs to us, but that it all belongs to God. Anything we have been blessed with has been entrusted to us so that we, like God can be a blessing to others. The real joy of having is sharing, but we often miss it, because we convince ourselves that we’ve deserved it or earned it, because some how we are special, but the truth is: Anything we have has been given to us by God and not because we as so special, but because He is so gracious and He is offering us an opportunity to choose grace over grudge and live at a higher level by being a blessing to others for His glory.

Focusing on the negative and ignoring the positive can flat out drain us of the power that allows us to live blessed, fulfilled and happy. This one is so tough for most of us, because we live in a world that is constantly trying to manipulate and program us with the negative. We do have a choice and our choice is our super power, if we choose positivity over negativity. The flat out truth is that negativity is a choice we make that robs us of the people, places and things that really matter.

Mistakes made by ourselves or others, often become walls that imprison us from the world of blessing and lock us away in our own personal misery. The reality is that we all make mistakes. Look back on your life and you will discover many that you have conveniently forgotten about. When we remember our own mistakes, we tend to have a little more love, grace and mercy toward others.

The older I get, the more I realize that life is too short to waste my days away on stuff that really does not matter. Who said what or did what are really very small things when it comes to choosing to live the blessed life. I mean honestly: What grudge can you think of that has ever really been meaningful in your life in a positive and life blessing way??? Grudges are a waste of life, time and space.

Laughter is a gift from God that expresses the joy that flows from an inward place of contentment that can only come from being who, what, when, when and who God has created me to be and that is not a grudge holding, judgmental, miserable and unforgiving person.

If you do wrong, own it, by apologizing for it and then letting go and moving on. When others do wrong, forgive them, let it go and move on, regardless of their apologizing or not. The key is that we were created for freedom and the reason that most of us don’t live in freedom, is because we live in self constructed prisons of our own creation.

The older I get, the more I realize that God allows me to make mistakes so that I can learn from them. Looking back, I really can see how failures, mistakes and sins have been my greatest instructors and motivators in growing to become the person God created me to be.

I am learning that people change. In fact, we change everyday and it is up to us to decide if it is going to be change for bad or change for good. There are some things that are beyond our control, sometimes life throws you a curve and their is very little you can do about it, but miss it, fail and if you are smart, learn from it.

In the end, when it is all said and done and our life here on this earth is done, there is one truth that remains the same for all eternity and that truth is: LIFE GOES ON!

A Majority Of One!

It is hard to recognize the world we are living in now a days, because it has become so destructive, disillusioned and divisive. We look for things to disagree on and grab hold of things that will drive a wedge between us and others. We walk around with a chip on our shoulder, praying someone will try and knock it off, so we might have a chance to knock them off. It has gotten down right ugly and doesn’t look to be turning around any time soon.

The really sad thing is that we see this in places that it used to never be expected. We see it in churches, families and friendships. Now a days it seems the least little thing can become bigger than life and destroy what it took years to build and develop. In the Bible, we find Jesus praying for just the opposite for those that chose to follow Him. He prayed that we might be in agreement, unified and together as one. He knew that we are stronger together than a part.

“20 Neither pray I for these alone, but for them also which shall believe on me through their word; 21 That they all may be one; as thou, Father, art in me, and I in thee, that they also may be one in us: that the world may believe that thou hast sent me. 22 And the glory which thou gavest me I have given them; that they may be one, even as we are one: 23 I in them, and thou in me, that they may be made perfect in one; and that the world may know that thou hast sent me, and hast loved them, as thou hast loved me.” -John 17:20-23

There is great power in our getting past our differences, which are usually not really a big deal anyway. Division is a tool of the enemy used to keep us a part, so that he can deplete us of our resources and sap us of our strength. This leads to our being broken with very little hope of recovery on our own. The real tragedy is that all of this work to block the blessing of God from flowing into and through our life.

It has never been a part of God’s plan for us to attack one another. It has never been God’s agenda for us to go to war with one another. God does not want us bickering, fighting and quarreling with one another. God wants us to come together with Him and with each other, so that we might be one united relationship of supernatural power that can face and overcome the worst the devil and this world has to throw our way.

Below Are Five Suggestions For Doing Your Part To Help Us Come Together As A Majority Of One:

1.) Look For And Yield To God’s Will! This means letting go and laying your will aside, so that you can pick up God’s perfect will as your guiding light and purpose in life.

2.) Deal With Your Own Challenges And Sins! My Grandmother used to say: Sweep off your own porch, before you start trying to sweep off someone else’s.” The truth is that we all have our on battles to fight and once we fight and find victory in ours, then we just might be ready to help others with there’s, not because we are better, but because we are learning.

3.) Practice Humility! If you really want to get good at something, then you need to practice all the time, over and over again. We need to practice humility, because just when we think we’ve got it, we usually get proud of ourselves and blow it!

4.) Be An Encouragement! Everyone needs some more positivity and less negativity in their lives, so why not start with yourself. If you will start, then you might encourage others along the way and at some point you will need someone to encourage you.

5.) Embrace Reconciliation! To reconcile is to become one, regardless of our differences. The truth is: What unites us (JESUS) is stronger than anything that can divide us.

I encourage you to do your part and promise that I will be trying to do mine!