Sunrise Sermon: Just Right

This past week as I began preparing for today’s message, I found my thoughts to be scattered hither and yon. They usually come together in a cohesive little box with a coherent little bow, but as I heaped more and more onto my plate last week, I quickly grew tired and too weary to package my thoughts.

After resting a bit, I woke up with the story of Goldilocks and the Three Bears. I know this might seem strange, but stick with me. If you have never heard this story, I’ll summarize it for you with my spin of course.

One Sunday morning just before sunrise and early mass, Mama Bear got up to have her Community Coffee with chicory before Baby Bear and Papa Bear got up. She savored her coffee and daydreamed about fishing on the bayou as a cub. A few minutes later, the loud snores of Papa and Baby startled her back to reality, so she jumped up, grabbed her cast iron skillet, and prepared to wake them up.

She began pouring and mixing just as she had watched Maw Maw bear do when she was little. Pouring and mixing until the mixture was just right, she ladled the mixture into the hot skillet, and the sweet smell of  Southern goodness wafted through the air.

The snoring stopped, and Mama Bear yelled, “Allon boys, Couche Couche is served!” 

If you know the original story, Mama Bear actually served porridge, and it was too hot to consume, so the Bear family decided to take a walk until it was cool enough to eat. Meanwhile, Goldilocks — who was walking through the woods, happened upon the Bears’ house. She walked right in and made herself at home. She tried Papa’s porridge, but it was far too hot; Mama’s porridge was far too cold, but Baby’s was just right, so she devoured it and licked the bowl (That’s my spin.). Next, she attempted to get comfy. She sat in Papa’s chair, but it was too firm; she tried Mama’s, but it was too soft, and then she tried Baby’s, and it was just right — at least for a little while until she broke it (too much porridge, I presume). Finally, after all that eating and snooping, she grew tired and decided to take a nap. Again, she started with Papa’s bed, and it was too firm; next, she tried Mama’s bed, but it was too soft. Finally, she found Baby’s bed, and it was just right. She fell asleep and woke up to three bears standing over her, so she did what anyone in that predicament would do. She jumped out the window and hightailed it home.

Many of us find ourselves in similar situations. We fall victim to the Comparison Trap. We want what others have and sometimes take it.

Behold, as the eyes of servants look to the hand of their master, As the eyes of a maid to the hand of her mistress, So our eyes look to the LORD our God, Until He is gracious to us. ~ Psalms 123:2

Seeking what others have and getting it may bring you immediate pleasure, but you will soon grow tired of it, sick of it, and perhaps even rid yourself of it. Someone else’s promise from God will never bring you joy. Only that which is divinely doled out will bring you joy–unspeakable joy. May blessings abound! ❤

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NOTE – Click the hyperlink above for a recipe for Couche Couche. Bon appetit! ❤

The Pieces Fit

Each time I sit and begin to hammer out these posts, I’m continually amazed that God is using me — a little girl from a small town in Louisiana to minister to all of you. I’m overwhelmed now as I recall the many times he spoke to me in my teens and 20s, and I didn’t even recognize his voice. Today I’m completely different. I know his voice, but it isn’t audible as you might imagine.  When he gives me these messages, they start in my dreams, continue through my daily scripture readings, and even meet me in the car when I turn on the radio. All those pieces yield a theme and a message that I divide into two parts — the Sunrise Sermon and the Music Monday posts.

Here are the pieces he gave me this week:

  • No matter how long you have travelled in the wrong direction, you can always turn around. With Jesus it’s never too late to make a new start and ensure that your life is set in the right direction. ~Excerpt from devotional
  • Our Father knows what we need before we ask him. ~Matthew 6:8
  • “You Know Me” by George Huff
  • Isaiah 30:1-18 – Anchor text from Pastor Anderson’s message on 4/23/17
  • For the LORD God is our sun and our shield. He gives us grace and glory. The LORD will withhold no good thing from those who do what is right. ~Psalms 84:11

As you look at the pieces I chose to share, the theme is clear: God knows us and longs to be gracious to us if only we’d just wait on him. We have a tendency to push through all the warning signs just to get what we want. Once we get it, we’re not satisfied because we refused to be obedient to God’s directives or simply didn’t recognize his voice. He wants to give us much more than we can achieve through mere human strength. I’ve felt the sting of getting what I want, only to realize that God intended to give me something better. Have you felt it too?

I challenge you all to carve out a little quiet time throughout the day to talk to God and to listen for his voice. Allow his sweet whisper to wash away the noise of the world like a flood — leaving just his voice and your heart. He longs for that. No one knows your heart like he does. My prayer for you today is that you will lean in, listen, and go wherever God tells you to go, and if he tells you to sit or slow down, do that. He will never lead you in the wrong direction. He’ll hem you in behind and before, and he will lay his hand upon you. Take comfort in that truth. May blessings abound! ❤

Yet the Lord longs to be gracious to you; therefore he will rise up to show you compassion. For the Lord is a God of justice. Blessed are all who wait for him! ~Isaiah 30:18

Before you leave today, spend a little time in worship as you listen to George Huff’s “You Know Me.”

Sunday Sermon: God is Sufficient

Over the years, I have learned to consult God on every decision — big and small, needs — big and small, or just thanksgiving — big and small. He is our constant source of all things just and beautiful. There’s nothing wrong with confiding in a trusted friend, but keep in mind that we have a friend in Jesus.

A few nights ago, my friend Charlene and I hosted our first Twitter Chat one week after streaming a Facebook Live video. I was a little apprehensive about the video because I am not a fan of doing anything live. Having the time and opportunity to edit and refine what I do is much easier for me than doing something once without the chance to “fix” it. After our seven minutes of fame, we breathed a collective sigh of relief before reflecting on what we had just shared with the world.

We did everything right!

We promoted this event on all our social media sites and personally invited friends, but we only had a few people join us when we went live. Full disclosure? I was disappointed. We prayed right before the event as we always do, and I know that God heard our prayer. What I didn’t hear was his response. I don’t even recall waiting to hear it.

And my God will supply every need of yours according to his riches in glory in Christ Jesus. ~Philippians 4:19

After the live event ended, we noticed a spike in video hits — a couple thousand, in fact. Our prayer was for our message to reach all who needed to hear it, and God answered our prayer with a timely, perfect response. What was imperfect was my expectation. In this world of viral videos, I think I expected fireworks because We did everything right. Why is it that a monkey on water skis gets 400,000 views, but a message about living on purpose doesn’t? Perhaps a message about living on purpose isn’t cute or humorous; maybe it’s actually a little scary. In the end, what we got was exactly what we needed — genuine feedback from people who know us, care about us, and are ready to walk in their purpose.

One week later, we hosted our first Twitter Chat. I was pumped; Charlene was a little anxious but definitely on board. Again, We did everything right! We promoted the event on all of our social media sites, wrote the questions weeks in advance, and spent time discussing how we would keep up with a fast-paced chat. At exactly 8:00 PM EDT, we began the chat and sat in silence for about three minutes before anyone chimed in. Again, we breathed a sigh of relief because now we could chat with one other person rather than just each other. Just as before, we prayed to God to bring people to the chat who needed to hear our message. Within a few minutes a few more people showed up, and we suddenly became very busy responding to everyone, retweeting their powerful responses, and posting new questions every eight minutes. It was exhilarating!

The one-hour chat seemed to end quickly, but in the end, we felt encouraged by what the ladies had to share. Because of them and their varied experiences, we left the chat a little different than when we entered it. God has the power to change us in an instant, and he’ll never give us more than we can bear. If one more person had joined the chat, we would’ve been overwhelmed.

Our Father knows what we need before we ask him. ~Matthew 6:8

Tomorrow night, we’ll share part two of our Facebook Live message on Two Are Better Than One at 8:00 PM EDT. I hope you’ll join us. This time, we’ll pray that all who need to hear our message will hear it, but this time, my expectations are in sync with God’s will. He always provides exactly what is necessary to sustain us, so I’ll definitely bear that in mind. As we transition into the next phase of our ministry, I will hold firmly to this verse.

For the LORD God is our sun and our shield. He gives us grace and glory. The LORD will withhold no good thing from those who do what is right. ~Psalms 84:11

May it bring you comfort as well. May blessings abound! ❤

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Stop Running

Hang On

Good morning, beautiful people!  I trust that you had a great weekend and reveled in the resurrection of our Lord yesterday. What a wonderful revelation to know that Jesus overcame the grave. Not even death could hold him down. Let that truth settle into your soul as you think about where you are today and the vision it takes to fully walk in your purpose.

Are you looking at your situation and thinking that there’s no way out of the rut you’ve found yourself in or the pit you can’t climb out of? I ask you to imagine the abundant life that God has planned for you and to connect to the only one who can do all things but fail–almighty God, our rescuer and deliver.

Today as I reflect on the countless times he has rescued me, I’m also reminded of the woman with the blood issue in the bible.

43 And a woman was there who had been subject to bleeding for twelve years, but no one could heal her. 44 She came up behind him and touched the edge of his cloak, and immediately her bleeding stopped.

45 “Who touched me?” Jesus asked.

When they all denied it, Peter said, “Master, the people are crowding and pressing against you.”

46 But Jesus said, “Someone touched me; I know that power has gone out from me.”

47 Then the woman, seeing that she could not go unnoticed, came trembling and fell at his feet. In the presence of all the people, she told why she had touched him and how she had been instantly healed.48 Then he said to her, “Daughter, your faith has healed you. Go in peace.” ~ Luke 8:43-48

Faith in God’s omnipotence is what you can bring to the table, and he will serve up a blessing that your mind can’t conceive. It’s amazing how deeply attuned he is to our heart’s desires: healing, love, freedom, a fresh start, a clean heart, or eternal life. He can do it. I’ve seen it firsthand. Ask him to reveal a snapshot of his plan for your life; I know it will blow your mind. Hang on a little longer, and feast your eyes on the banquet he has prepared for you. May blessings abound! ❤

Before you leave today, turn up the volume and get ready to move. I hope you enjoy my Music Monday selection by Kierra Sheard entitled “Hang On.”

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Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV® Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.® Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.

What Will be Your Legacy?

Let us remember why we’re here. There’s no need to build up treasures here. Enable your receptors to hear this message. If you have a relationship with God, you already have the Pearl of Great Value. Keep your eyes on the prize — eternity with our Abba Father. May blessings abound! ❤

Purpose-driven achiever

We are all familiar with the saying “Time waits for no man”. And maybe, like me, when you look back over your life you can see periods of time that were squandered. Those times have gone. We can never bring them back and there’s no point in us dwelling in the land of regret.

We can only thank our Father God for each new day he allows us to awake, knowing that each day presents a fresh opportunity to live purposefully, to honour Him—not just with our lips but also with our lifestyle.

Most ambitious people, or productive individuals will want to see their efforts and achievements extend beyond their own lives. Their desire is to leave a lasting legacy.

Today, we celebrate artists like Rembrandt and Renoir, writers such as Shakespeare and geniuses such as Einstein, who have left us a rich legacy we can still appreciate and…

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Sunrise Sermon: He Has Risen

Jesus Christ has risen from the dead. Have you? Our risen Lord is alive and well. You, too, should awaken from your deep sleep and begin to live again. Have you noticed that others are moving up and moving on? If the answer is yes, then you probably have been sitting in the same spot  for a while — watching everyone else live as you literally wait to die. It’s time to wake up, rise up, remove the stone, and ascend to new heights.

empty-tomb

Let everything that has breath praise the LORD. Praise the LORD. ~Psalms 150:6

Thank God for your life and begin to live it. We all get stuck occasionally, and it’s difficult to get moving again. It’s as if our minds are willing, but our bodies aren’t listening. Do whatever it takes to get your mind and body connected.  Use your divine connection for direction. Only he knows the way that you should go. Sometimes, you can pull yourself out of the fog you’ve been sitting in. Other times, you may need friends and family to intervene. Believe it or not, no one enjoys watching you sit there except the enemy. He loves an idle mind. His best work is created there. Don’t allow him to squat in your mind. Wake up, rise up, move the stone, and ascend to new heights. Today we rejoice because you, too, have risen.

May blessings abound! ❤

 

NOTE – Images courtesy of Google Royalty-Free Images, Bible verse courtesy of biblehub.com