No Truer Words Were Ever Spoken.

No truer words have ever been spoken in the history of man nor will they be in the future.  These words are eternal!

So I give you Jesus Christ, our Lord and Savior.

"Blessed are the poor in spirit,
for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.

Blessed are they who mourn,
for they shall be comforted.

Blessed are the meek,
for they shall inherit the earth.

Blessed are they who hunger and thirst for righteousness,
for they shall be satisfied.

Blessed are the merciful,
for they shall obtain mercy.

Blessed are the pure of heart,
for they shall see God.

Blessed are the peacemakers,
for they shall be called the children of God.

Blessed are those who are persecuted for the sake of righteousness,
for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.






God Bless You!
God Bless America!

Take The High Road

The next section in Matthew is Chapter 5, The Beatitudes.  The Beatitudes are blessings and my study bible describes it this way…

“Blessed here refers to the ultimate well-being and distinctive spiritual joy of those who share in the salvation of the kingdom of God.”

The Beatitudes are connected to Jesus’ Sermon on the Mount.  Whether this is from one sermon or a compilation of sermons is not known. But before we start to examine each one, I want to talk about what Jesus is calling us to do.

The Sermon on the Mount is Jesus’ call to His followers to live a moral and ethical life. An almost unattainable moral and ethical life.  Some say it is describing life in heaven and is unrealistic for life here on earth.  I say it is Jesus asking us to try.  For in trying we become the better person, He knows we are inside.

Would Jesus dislike us for failing? No, I do not believe He would, but I do believe He would love us even more because we did try life His way. Jesus knows how imperfect you and I really are, and He loves us anyway!

So, in every situation in our lives, we should always try to take the higher road.

Next week when we start the Beatitudes, examine them carefully.  Figure out the adjustments you need to make in your life and try.

God Bless You!

God Bless America!

News Travels Fast

News by mouth today, travels faster because of the internet.  Hearing becomes posting, tweeting, and pinning. Some news is instantaneous, which would have taken months or years to circulate back in Jesus’ day.

And this is the case in Matthew 4:23 – 25.

We are told Jesus traveled throughout Galilee preaching and healing every disease among the people. And it spread like wild-fire! People were bringing themselves and others to Jesus to be healed.  Matthew tells us…

“Large crowds from Galilee, the Decapolis, Jerusalem, Judea, and the region across the Jordan followed Him.”

Talk about Mr. Popular!

Can you imagine the excitement of seeing someone truly healed by Jesus? Just His very touch was holy.  I would have loved to have been there, bringing the people up to Him, passing out water, or just being in His presence.

The very magnitude of what was happening is almost unimaginable!

That is why, I get so upset with these ministries and preachers whom I call snake charmers. They prey on the vulnerability of our weaknesses and sicknesses. And then ask for money in return.  I don’t remember any of the Apostles asking for a donation before bringing people to Jesus.

I could not ask for one dime if God decided to use me as the vessel through which He would heal others.  Could you? The very privilege of God thinking I am worthy enough for Him to use me to help someone in their sickness, is overwhelming.

I even feel guilty about charging for my Christian children’s book.  It took me years until only a month ago, to apply affiliate marketing to my Christian website and blog.  I felt it was wrong somehow. And before I did, you bet I prayed a lot!

Snake charmers must sleep better than I do.

When you come across a group, a ministry, and or a person wanting to heal or lead you to Jesus for money, pause for a moment. And remember the crowds who came to Jesus for healing. Jesus healed them out of pure love without strings attached.  If there are strings, there is no God in it.

Just a note.  I am not talking about supporting a ministry in their outreach program.  Reaching the masses these days can be an expensive undertaking. Just use the discernment you have through the Holy Spirit.  Then you will know what to do.

 

God Bless You!

God Bless America!

 

The Sweet Fragrance of Love

I want to share with you a dream I had the other night.  And it brought 2 Corinthians 2:15 to life for me. For those of you who will say that it happened because I read or was studying 2 Corinthians, nothing could be farther from the truth.  I am working on the book of Matthew right now.

“For we are to God the pleasing aroma of Christ among those who are being saved and those who are perishing.”

In my dream I was sitting on a couch sectional which was U-shaped.  There were two other, older couples each one in an area of the U. Our conversation was about my father.  They had known him and wanted something of his to remember him.

I found myself handing each of them items, that I have no clue where they came.  We talked a little about the items. And then I was handed a many-colored striped shirt, almost like those flannel coat-shirts you see in hunting magazines.

Immediately I said, “Oh, no I can not give this shirt because it reminds me of my father, it smells just like him.”

For those of you who know me, know I can not smell anymore. The auto-immune disease along with the numerous facial surgeries has destroyed my sense of smell.  Even in my dream, I thought it was odd for me.

Then I buried my face into the shirt, and took a deep breath.  I so wish the internet had smell-a-vision! For it was unlike any smell which I retain within my memory bank.

The shirt smelled fragrant, but not overpowering; warm, gentle, pleasing, and full of love.  The next breath I breathed deeply into my lungs.  My body was filled with the warmth and love of the fragrance. I was so happy, with a happiness that comes from another dimension.  And I knew it was Jesus!

I woke up praising God and dancing around. Jesus just sent me a love note to remind me that even in sorrow and difficult times He is there with me!

Oh, I know the scientific minds will equate this to missing my father and my brain working it out.  But my heart knows my brain had nothing to do with this, Jesus did.

And that is why I am sharing a bible study starting with Matthew.  I want people to realize that with a good study bible, God’s word can come alive in their lives.  You can have an intimate relationship with Jesus Christ, with Him as your bride groom.  Even when you think you are going through the worst moments in your life, Christ is there. Hold on to Him tightly, and He will see you through.

My earthly father told me a week before he went home (passed) that there were moments in his life he thought were so bad.  But they were all good.

Jesus Christ wants to do this for all of His children. We just have to let Him.

If God would grant me one wish. I would want everyone who reads my blogs to leave with the fragrant smell of Christ lingering in their nostrils!

 

God Bless You!

God Bless America!

 

To The Protesting NFL Players…

The freedoms we possess in the United States of America,

does not mean we are allowed the freedom of disrespect.  Joni Berry

I am passionate about the words I recently wrote concerning our freedoms.  And I think it should include all people and all things in the United States.

Including the NFL players who are sitting during our national anthem. I would like to recommend Viktor E Frankl’s book, “Man’s Search for Meaning,” for them to read.  In it he states that “no one has the right to do wrong, not even if wrong has been done to them.”  And what these players are doing by disrespecting our national anthem and flag, is wrong. Because they are also disrespecting the fans.

I also use Frankl as an example because, if anyone had the right to do wrong, it would be Viktor E Frankl.  He was a survivor of the Nazi concentration camps during World War II. Frankl was violated mentally and physically in every unimaginable sadistic way, only to come out of the camp to find his bride had been gassed. His family was gone.

Instead of disrespect and destruction Viktor realized that it was by looking to the future, where real change and survival can be created. For this was how they survived the camps. Not by sitting on a bench turning into a pillar of salt! Because those who sat in their huts and bunks, died. And you, sitting NFL players could be killing your own careers.( Just a thought.)

In a simpler statement, change comes from moving forward and doing.

Now, I know somewhere in your minds, you truly believe you are bringing awareness to the problem.  But I will have to pop your disillusioned bubble, and tell you that awareness of the problem was started back in the sixties. What you are doing now, is like spitting in the wind with it only to splatter  back on your face. Instead, what you should be doing is to take the awareness, run with it, and be the change!

Move forward and do.

Now, for those of us who have been in the inner city trenches, soup kitchens, homeless shelters, abuse shelters, and ministry outreach;  we view the sitting as an example of apathy and child-like attention grabbing. You want to do something, but you don’t want to get your hands dirty. So it is easier to sit.

And the message which you are sending to the American kids is that to create change all they need to do is sit, pout, and be disrespectful. Instead you could be promoting change, by being living, active examples within your communities.

So, I challenge each one you who sits that if you truly desire change and not attention, then you put your money where your butt is now. Start an inner city fund among the athletes to promote education, small business, and  a way out of the poverty and drugs. Join the local police and ask “How can I help you to bring this community together?” Give the kids positive, hard-working examples to immolate.

And remind the world, that when much is given, much is expected in return.

For, it is one thing to talk change, but it is another to walk the change. It takes courage and ambition to create honorable change, along with a humble spirit. Which might be too far away from the spotlight for you.

Still, I challenge you!

Because if you continue to sit, maybe the time has come for the hard-working American people to show you change. Those of us who will never know in our life time, one year of your salary.  The no bodies, who are out in the trenches trying to make a difference. And buying the tickets and merchandise your franchise sells which affords you, your luxurious lifestyle.

We could start our own boycott of your team, your stadiums, your apparel, and the companies and media outlets who endorse you.  And with social media today, a bunch of no bodies could take a chunk out of your pocket-book and the NFL.  For someone who loves her football teams, it will be hard.  But because I am someone who loves and respects what her country stands for, it will be my mission.

So, if you think sitting is a protest, wait until you see us, standing Americans, protest with the boycotts.  Because we are sick and tired of you multi-million dollar athletes being cry babies!  The privilege you have been given is not one you deserve, proven by your actions.

(I do need to add a note…I know there are teams who are not sitting. And I also know that my two teams, Houston Texans & Carolina Panthers, create change within their communities. Except they do it the honorable way God tells us to; without bragging or attention. So to those teams, I say “thank you!”)

Remember, I challenge those of you who are sitting, to stand and be the real change in America!

I hope to see everyone standing this Sunday.

I Will Make You Fishers Of Men!

Jesus has started his ministry and now, Matthew tells us about Him calling His first disciples.  In Matthew 4: 18-22, Matthew states that Jesus was walking by the Sea of Galilee. What kind of men would Jesus find by the sea anyway? Fishermen.

I am told in my study bible that evangelism was at the heart of Jesus.  Evangelism is preaching about a belief with the goal of converting others to your belief.  Of course this makes sense because Jesus wants us all to be saved!  But first, Jesus needs disciples to testify about His ministry.

Jesus knowing where to find somewhat trained disciples,was walking by the Sea of Galilee. When He saw two brothers casting their nets into the water.  One was name Simon called Peter and the other Andrew.

Jesus said, “Come follow me and I will make you fishers of men.”

Matthew informs us they dropped their nets and followed Jesus.  Then Matthew mentions two more brothers with their father (Zebedee), James and John.  We are told they left their nets and their father, to go with Jesus.

We see no mention of these men asking Jesus, who was He that they should go with Him.  This is truly blind faith.  Would you have asked? Be honest. In today’s world, I probably would ask.

After reading this passage, I thought about my own experiences fishing in Clark Hill.  A lake located between South Carolina and Georgia. First you must have the right bait.  Then you need to know where the fish are located.  And lastly, you must have patience to endure the time trying to convince the fish to take your bait.  Oh, there are always the ones who take the bait quickly and then there is elusive ones you have to wait on.

These are the qualities Jesus needed when fishing for men.  So, I guess you could say, He picked disciples who had previous training.

And that is what we must do today.  We need to fish for men, by using the Gospel as our bait, pick the fertile locations of people, and have patience to see it through to the end.

When is your next fishing trip?

 

God Bless You!

God Bless America!