Praise God today more than ever

Praising the Lord should be at the same level all the time. We should be praising Him in good times and in bad times. If there is a time we might want to praise Him more it’s during the bad times. Praising Him is an act of faith and faith pleases God. Praising Him opens the doors to Heaven and brings the presence to the Lord into the scene. Your scene right now is most likely pretty dismal. With everything that is going on in the world, it would be hard not to feel stressed and discouraged. God sees your scene. God is familiar with your current scene. He knows how you are feeling and what you are going through. However, there are no scenes He can’t turn into peace. God can take the chaos you are experiencing and make it a peaceful scene. He can change you on the inside so you can deal better with the outside. The ugly scene that is before your very eyes every day will take time to be resolved but it doesn’t mean that you can’t go through it with peace. Praise is your best resort. It is what you and I need today.

 

You and I need to focus on the One who changes everything. Praise will change you so you can change the world around you. Praise will make you focus on Jesus so you can share Him with the world around you. Praise will heal you so you can help heal the world around you. Praise will give you strength so you can be strong for the people around you. Praise will increase your faith so you can deal with the world around you with blind faith. Praise will give God the glory so you can understand that you are nothing without Him. Praise will magnify Christ so the problems in your life can be minimized. Praise away today. I say praise and you won’t be defeated by the scene around you. Praise and magnify the Lord. Let Jesus be magnified today more than ever. Get going with the praise and the negativity will get out of your way. May Jesus be magnified. Everything is going to change for the best for you when you let Jesus be magnified. Let your praise be heard louder today more than ever before!

If there is one thing that stands out when we read the book of Psalms is that David was an amazing psalmist. He did not write all of psalms but most of them. His tone is sometimes sad, desperate, frightened but it is also joyful and full of praise. If you don’t know where to start with praise, start with the Psalms. Psalm 100 is a great praise Psalm. You will find some beautiful inspiration there. Praising the Lord is something that is in your heart as a Christian. You might be doing it regularly or you might need to learn how to unearth this gift in you but it is there. Praise is a weapon. It’s a weapon against the blues, against fear, against defeat, against discouragement. Many a times I have let myself become an instrument of praise when things were not going well in my life. I have given myself to praise like David the shepherd who was a psalmist. There are so many things that can defeat us and bring us down. There are so many opportunities for us to give up. It’s when things are tough that we have to get tougher and praise is a great way for us to get that tougher skin.

 

Like I said earlier, praise brings God onto the scene. Discouragement can be defeated by God. Anything negative and bad that you are going through can be defeated by God. When you praise, you give Him control. You let Him come in and do what He does best. First, He blesses you by changing your heart and putting hope in it and then He goes to work on your situation. There are better days ahead of you despite the epidemic and praise brings those better days to you today. In times like these you need to go to your refuge and get a refill of hope. Praise can get you there. You need to enter the Lord’s gates and stay in His house for a while. Praise can get you there. Decide today that you are going to praise instead of letting fear destroy your faith. These days can be challenging but the Lord is still with you. Praise will remind you of how present He is and how powerful He is. Praise Him and let doubt fall apart. Praise Him and let victory be in your heart and on your mind. Praise Him and He will reset your spirit. He has so much peace for you and He wants you to have it now. Let Christ be magnified today and tomorrow will look better than ever!

Suggested reading: Psalm 100; 1 Chronicles 16:23-31; Jeremiah 20:13

The power of your testimony

What does your life say about you? What does your life say about God? What is your testimony? Are you aware that you have a testimony? There is a story that is told through your actions, your words and your thoughts. It is a story that is apparent to the world. The sum of who you are is displayed in that story every day. People are watching, people are taking notes, people are listening to what your testimony has to say. You have the power to make a testimony that praises the Lord or that mirrors the world. Choose the story God wrote for you and live it out. You have a powerful testimony and it is time you let the world see it and read it. What happens to you is not what makes you but how you react and interact with what happens to you is what you are made of. You are a child of God that has the DNA of the Father and you can act, think, love, walk, speak like your Father. You can choose to be like Him or you can choose to be your own person and forge a personality that is not what He wants for you. Today I am here to remind you that you have a powerful testimony and you can choose to lean on the Spirit of God and be the person the Lord designed you to be. Remain in God and He will remain in you. Fill yourself up with the Lord and your testimony will give Him glory. Stick with what truly matters and what truly mattes is that Jesus is glorified through your daily testimony.

 

I love how the Bible reveals that the testimony of two witnesses is true. God has a plan for you and when you agree with His plan and you trust Him, you become the second witness and the plan is true. Your life is powerful lives when it is God-centered. God has already seen how powerful your life was. He is the number one witness. Now, He is waiting on you to be the second witness and to verify that what He said in His Word about you was true. You and I are the second witnesses. We can testify by staying in line with the Word and staying in faith. Friend, let your life speak about how good God is. Let your life echo God’s kindness. Let your life tell the world that God loves everyone and that He can give peace, joy and freedom. Stand up in the court of life every day and be that second witness that confirms what God’s Word says. Be a witness to God’s greatness. Be a witness to God’s holiness!

 

The word of your testimony allows you to triumph in life. What you say matters. What you say has power. You can curse and you can bless. You can bring peace or you can bring chaos into your life with your words. Therefore, it is important to know that you are constantly giving an account of your testimony when you speak. When you glorify the Lord through your words, power is released into your life. Praising and worshiping Him through your words and actions are very great ways of giving a positive testimony that honors God. The world needs your positive testimony. The world needs your words of affirmation and your words of hope. What you present to the world goes a long way. Don’t underestimate the power of your testimony. Sound the horn of joy with your actions and your words. Be the reflection of the Lord that the world longs for.

 

You can be under scrutiny and under a lot of pressure when you bear testimony to the Lord. Not everyone accepts what you tell them and how you shine Jesus into the world. However, the Lord warned us and said that it would happen and He also said we shouldn’t be afraid when persecution takes place. You have to stand firm and keep your testimony strong. Life will try to change the narrative but with the help of the Holy Spirit you can continue to speak of the goodness of God and be the witnesses that don’t waver and that don’t faint under pressure. God has an army of angels that will always assist you. When you stay in faith, everything always works out for the best. Let your testimony be seen every day. Praise the Lord and rejoice over Him always! Stay encouraged!

Suggested reading: Luke 21:13; John 8:17-18; Revelation 6:9

Honoring God the best way we can

I have been thinking a lot about how I can honor God better. What does honoring someone mean? It means to regard him or her with great respect. It means to recognize that the person has value and is important. If I want to honor God more, I need to show Him even more respect and live my life in a way that exemplifies how I respect Him. There are times during prayer when all I want to do is be on my knees and be in reverence before the Lord. There is no particular reason other than I think He is awesome and He is so good. He deserves my utmost respect and He deserves my attention. I truly believe that honoring God starts with spending time with Him and showing Him that He is worthy of our attention. Acknowledging that there is no substitute for Him and that He means everything is a great start or a great goal. My goal is always to sustain reverence and honor toward God. Honoring God takes on a different meaning when we constantly remind ourselves of what He did on the cross. His sacrifice is unparalleled. What He did for you and me was unheard of and it will never be matched. Can you think of ways you can honor God more every day?

 

One way we respect our parents and our elders is by listening to what they have to say and obeying them. It seems like an obvious way to honor them and yet we can rebel against them and do our own things. Ignoring their advice and their wisdom can appear to be an appealing option. Why? Our minds are not always in line with our spirits. Our spirits like to do the right thing, our minds like to have a mind of their own. We tend to go with what seems good at the moment and not always consider what is good permanently. Short term solutions don’t give lasting results. However, we can make decisions that align with the wisdom and advice given by our parents and those decisions can turn out to be the best ideas to follow. The Lord is our number one parent. He is our creator and He has the role of the parent who cares about us and who watches over us. His wisdom and His advice are very important. We can’t ignore them and we can’t take them for granted. Honoring God means taking His Word seriously and listening to it. In order to listen to it, we have to make time for it. It’s interesting how when we listen to a lot of sermons and inspirational messages we feel like we have spent time in the Word. We are exposed to it but we need to invest time in it and read it for ourselves. Honoring God with time spent in His Word is the start of true wisdom.

 

Spending time in the Word gives us the magnificent opportunity to hear from God in a big way. God speaks through His Word and His Spirit. I prayerfully read the Word asking the Holy Spirit to give me revelation. Cooperating and working with the Spirit of God is a nice way to honor Him. Jesus sent the Holy Spirit to us. He is an amazing gift. When we work with the Spirit and respect Him, we honor God. I used to live a Christian life that didn’t take the Holy Spirit into account and it was a dull life. Embracing the Holy Spirit is honoring God. Think about that. I also believe that sharing God with the world and talking about the great gift from God is a way we can honor God. We can’t keep Him for ourselves. He is too good to be kept a secret. We don’t have to always use words to share Him. Our actions and the expression of His love through us speak volumes. There is so much we can tell the world about our Father. There is so much the world needs to hear and what we do can guide the narrative and write chapters of praise and love toward the One who died for us. If your life talks about God all the time and describes His goodness and His kindness, it is a great testimony. Honoring God with our lives is powerful. Let’s keep our lives in the sanctity of God’s essence by following Him, imitating Him and presenting Him to the world. Let’s honor God as much as we can!

Suggested reading: Deuteronomy 6:5; 1 Corinthians 3:16; 1 Corinthians 6:20

 

While you are waiting

Waiting for a breakthrough, a miracle or a blessing can be a frustrating experience. It can also be a lapse of time when we lose hope and we give up on our answers from God. While we are waiting, thoughts can grow and rob us of the joy of living in the present. There is something special about the wait. It can be especially bad or very beautiful. God sees beauty in the waiting. He is a God of patience and He wants us to cherish every moment of every day and that includes the waiting period. When we are hoping for the best, we must remember that we are with the best in that very moment. Jesus is the best! The length of the wait doesn’t change the depth of God’s love. Many characters in the Bible had to wait for a long time to get to their promise land so to speak. What we are waiting for is a land of many promises where honey and milk flow and where peace is the centerpiece. As you are reading this message you are probably waiting for something to happen in your life. You are waiting for an answer, for relief, for peace to come back or for joy to visit you. I am here to tell you that while you are waiting your Lord is the same. While you are waiting, know that your number one answer is in the waiting. God has something for you now that will bless you and that will help you. Dig into the waiting period and find the treasures the Lord has available for you before your breakthrough comes. It doesn’t matter if it’s around the corner or miles away; it will happen and the wait will give you what you need in the meantime.

 

I used to get so demoralized when I was waiting for something to happen in my life. I used to get so blue and sad thinking that it would never take place. The wait for me was synonym to the impossible. The longer the wait, the greater the suffering for me. Then I learned that with God nothing was impossible. I found out that God had defeated the impossible and for Him the impossible didn’t exist. The wait started to look differently. It didn’t equal impossible anymore. What did the wait mean? I received the revelation that God was in the waiting. Patience is a fruit of the Spirit. Where there is patience, there is a fruit from God. I decided to take that fruit and eat it on daily basis. If God was a God of patience, I needed to be patient and develop God’s fruit. I love fruit and that fruit has turned out to be more satisfying than any strawberries and pineapples in the world. If I were to liken patient to an actual fruit, I would say it’s a hybrid of my two favorite fruits, the ones I just mentioned. Patient is sweet and it gives great satisfaction. It can look harsh and prickly on the outside like a pineapple, meaning that it can seem to be hard to eat but once you open it, it is delicious and fulfilling. It is like a strawberry because it is soft and it is seeded. Each seed gives life to more fruit. Patience yields seeds of peace. Once you are eating the fruit of patience, you get the benefit of peace and contentment. I have noticed that peace is a “side effect” of patience when we trust in the process. Patience also works with faith and the seeds of patience can also be described as pockets of faith. You need a lot of them for patience to work. Just the way strawberries have many seeds, the many seeds of faith are inside the fruit of patience.

 

I have talked a few times before about what to do while we are waiting. One of the things Jesus tells us about fasting, is that when we do fast, we shouldn’t act like we are fasting. We shouldn’t act like we are going through a hard time. We shouldn’t show it to people. I believe the same is true about waiting. While we are waiting, we shouldn’t show it to people. We shouldn’t talk about agony, frustration or how tough it is to wait. We should go about our normal business and enjoy it all. Wait should equate to praise and not to pain. If we see the wait as pain, we have lost the battle before it even started. Wait stands for “while angels intervene today.” I made this up but it is encouraging. God’s angels have been placed in charge of protecting you and helping you. They are working on your situation while you are waiting and they are intervening on many levels that you can’t see or understand and they are doing it today. Today might seem like a normal day in the waiting process but God is acting behind the scenes and He has commissioned angels to assist you and make sure things move in your favor. Praise while you wait. Enjoy every day and work on your passions. Work on what God has given you. Focus on your talents, focus on your God-given abilities and serve the Lord with all your heart while you are waiting. Be active for Jesus while you are waiting. He is active on your behalf while you are waiting. Honor Him. Be God’s instrument while you are waiting for the end of your symphony. Stay positive, stay creative, stay in faith. While you are waiting, life with God is still happening. Make the most of it!

Suggested reading: Matthew 6:16-18; Galatians 5:22; Romans 5:2-4

 

When you get to the end of your rope

When you get to the end of your rope, the Lord is on the other side. He is there pulling you gently toward Him. His sweet nudge can be hard to perceive but His Spirit will open your eyes to His love that is drawing you closer to Him. If you feel like you are at the end of your rope today, pray for that nudge to be revealed. Pray for your eyes to be open. Pray for love. Pray for God’s love. Open up your heart. Be transparent with God. Cry out to Him and let Him know you can’t see His love; you can’t feel His touch and you can’t make it without His mercy and grace. God loves you to the moon and back and He is there holding that rope that you think is useless at this point. The end of your rope is the start of God. He will pick up where hope left off. He will give you the courage and the desire to keep going. He is about to inject you with a strong dose of hope that will keep you going. Don’t give up. God is not giving up on you. He knows you can make it. He knows you can make it through Him. He is the strength you need. He is the love that is missing. Love will make a way. His love will make a way. If you are at the end of your rope, let God pull you toward Him. The end won’t happen until He says it’s over and it will end well with Him!


Know that God has been at the end of your rope before
. Jesus reached the end of the universal rope for you and me. He did it not only for our sins but to also to give us salvation, freedom, to heal us and lead to where we can be more like Him. At the cross He saw you. He saw your struggle; He saw your pain. He felt your tears. He felt your agony. He saw your mind and He saw your heart. He knew what went on inside of you. Your thoughts of despair and of ending it were all there in front of Him. He took them and made them His own and they died with Him. He came back to life with the victory that you and I will need every day of our lives. Your problem today, your discouragement and your suffering were conquered on the cross. Jesus gave them the death sentence. It’s time you and I lived like justice was served. It is all taken care of. Your rope might look like it’s cut but God has a way of restoring everything and your rope is going to be much longer than you can imagine. Hang on to it because Jesus is on the other side holding it and keeping it sturdy for you.


If people in this world haven’t been able to help you, know that our God who is in this world but also out of this world, has all the help you need.
He will bring relief and peace and give you serenity in ways that no one else can. The Lord adores you and He will give you a piece of Heaven so you can deal with the harshness of the earth. Life throws things our way that make it seem like it’s the end. God gives us hope to help us deal with the feeling of the end. There is always more. God always gives more. When it looks like it’s over, there is more to come. Friend, hold on to hope. Don’t get discouraged. There is an abundance of love and peace coming your way. God will give you what you need. His timing is precious and it is perfect. Stay with Him while you are waiting. Stay in faith and let hope take over. Celebrate that the Lord your God will never leave you. He is adding miles to your rope and you are going to do amazing things thanks to Him and have wonderful times sponsored by His love. If you are at the end of your rope, know that God is the owner of that rope and He won’t let you down. Stay encouraged!

 

Suggested reading: Isaiah 41:10; 1 Corinthians 16:13; Ephesians 6:10

 

It doesn’t matter who is against you

We all face adversity at some point. We all have to deal with people who are oppositional, with situations that are difficult and circumstances that we don’t know how to handle. The opposition is real and it can be relentless. However, we have a God who is also real and His love is relentless. He is more powerful than any opposition that will ever come our way. God is bigger and greater. He is powerful and He is invincible. How come we go through times when we are defeated if our God is that amazing? Trials form our spiritual character and help us exercise our faith. We can look at the bad things that are happening to us as training ground for faith or as fields of defeat we don’t come back from. Our attitude toward what takes place in our lives is crucial. One thing that gives me strength when I am faced with tribulations is remembering that God is with me. The Lord is with me and for me. It doesn’t matter who is against me because Jesus is by my side. Does knowing that truly makes a difference? It does because I have meditated on it and I have used that truth on many occasions. Knowing it is not enough. Applying is over and over again is helpful. We ought to be relentless just like the opposition and just like God’s love. We can learn from what is bothering us, from the problems we are dealing with. One thing I have gained is a relentless spirit that keeps going despite the opposition because Jesus is there and He is the One who matters. Not the adversity. Today I want to remind you that it doesn’t matter who and what is against you. What matters is that Jesus is with you!

 

What does the opposition look like? What and who can be against you? I am sure you can come up with a list of agents of opposition for yourself. Financial struggle is an opposition. Stress is an agent of opposition. Fear and worry are friends with stress. Health issues are part of the opposition. Being at a loss and not knowing where to go next is a form of opposition. Spiritual and emotional torment is also opposition. The opposition can also manifest through people that are against us. People that seem to enjoy making our lives miserable. The Bible specifies that we have to face powers of darkness that are bigger than what we see. It doesn’t give a free pass to those who are opposing us but it helps understand why some people can be so against us. The enemy will use just about anyone; people we don’t know but also people we are close to. What is the best way to deal with all forms of opposition? The best way is Jesus. Jesus is the way, the truth and the life. Dealing with life with Jesus is the best way to live our lives. Think about all the agents of opposition in your life. You can even make a physical list of them. If you do, write them on a piece of paper and be sure to not write them in big letters. Then write over them. Write “Jesus is greater than all opposition” in big letters. Always keep that piece of paper close by and review that amazing reminder as often as needed.

 

My advice to you is that you find a way to be reminded of how much bigger the Lord is. It has to be anchored in your mind and sink down into your spirit. You might be facing some terrible challenges now and they are probably discouraging you but those challenges don’t make God smaller. His love is bigger than the universe and when you stay in faith, you experience it and you can see that nothing can stop Him from protecting you. The opposition is no match for Jesus. Exalt Him above the problems. Put Him on a pedestal. Make Him look big, the way He is. Don’t let the opposition get the upper hand in your mind. The enemy does most of his work in the mind. Kick him out of there and put Jesus in there permanently. Dedicate your mind and your thoughts to Him. How? Let His Word be the word you abide by the most. Surround yourself with the truth that He is bigger than anything and everything. When you are facing opposition, declare that you have nothing to worry about because Jesus is with you. Deal with people who are against you with love. Deal with them with Jesus. Ask His Spirit to show you how to handle them with love and how to do what the Lord wants for you in that situation. Love is bigger than hate. Love will always conquer hate. Jesus is love. Jesus always wins over hate and over all the powers of the enemy. You have nothing to fear; it doesn’t matter who is against you because Jesus is always with you!

Suggested reading: Psalm 118:6; Jeremiah 1:19; Romans 8:31-39

 

Making God famous on the inside

One of the nuggets of wisdom that I recently wrote and that I will share next weekend is about fame and notoriety. Are success and fame goals we should pursue for ourselves? Is it important to become famous? Is it a way to advance on our spiritual path? For many people, being popular and known is being successful. If they can be famous on social media, they have it made. The more followers, the more success. That is the definition of fame and success in the world nowadays. Why is it so crucial? I believe that part of it stems from a lack of love.

People are trying to plug in the holes left from the absence of God’s love in their lives. There is a void that they try to fill. It is also a question of feeling powerful and not just feeling loved. Power is appealing and it is tempting. We can’t control what happens to us most of the time so we try to find a form of power, something we can manipulate. Does God love famous people more than people who have no notoriety? Absolutely not. Does God want His people to be superstars with millions of followers? Well, I believe that it depends on how the fame is used and perceived. All we do should be done for God’s glory and to exalt Him. Making God famous is key here. Exalting ourselves above Him is dangerous because we are putting the focus on His creation and not on the creator.

When I was praying about fame and success, trying to understand it all, I heard that making Jesus famous in our hearts and minds is more fulfilling that making ourselves famous in the world. God should be the celebrity we honor and worship and the first step before making Him known to others is to make Him be adored on the inside. Is Jesus the celebrity that your body, mind, soul and spirit adore? If not, that is where it should start. Today I want to encourage you to make Jesus famous in you. Let your soul exalt Him. Let your heart keep Him nice and warm inside and let your body honor Him. Work on your mind so the Lord is the One that you think about the most and that guides your thought process.

What is a powerful way we can make the Lord famous inside of us? Relying on the Holy Spirit can get us there. The Spirit of the Lord always points to Jesus. He extols Him and He can’t lift up anyone else. I talk to the Holy Spirit. I thank Him for keeping me centered on Jesus and for helping me in all I do. I acknowledge in all my ways the best I can. He guides me and He opens me up to the Lord. He speaks gently and He speaks of love and it is always about Jesus, related to Jesus, and connected to Jesus in one way or another. Accepting God’s love, accepting that He is love is a good way to make Him famous in our hearts. Love has to be the biggest part of the picture we have of God in our minds and hearts. It has to be the frame and the picture. It has to invade all the visions of God that we have. It has to be an anchor in our minds, in the way we think. The Holy Spirit makes that happen when we keep the door to our soul wide open for Him.

If Netflix is more popular in us than Jesus, how will we make Him famous when we don’t know Him well enough? I now there is nothing wrong with having hobbies and entertainment in our lives. We need them but when they are our only outlets, we run the risk of knowing the world better than we know the Lord. It’s easy to be well acquainted with the world. We are always in it and the world gets inside of us. Knowing the Lord intimately requires more work. We ought to try our best to be as intimate as we can with God so that He is on the inside of us more than the world is. We can read His Word, pray, have communion with Him, praise Him, thank Him and let His Spirit have His way in us. When we make the conscious effort to see all these things happen, the Lord will be more popular inside of us. Our mind, soul and spirit will be in harmony with Him. When we get there, we can present Him to the world more easily. Let’s make Jesus famous on the inside so we can introduce Him to the world on the outside!

 

Suggested reading: Psalm 96:3; Mark 16:15; Matthew 24:14