Stop Calling Alive, What God Calls Dead

Stop Calling Alive What God Calls Dead

I enjoy this time of year, it’s not to hot and not to cold, perfect for putting on a coat and going for a nice walk. This morning as I was out walking I noticed these two dead trees that were just over halfway down my driveway. They didn’t just die today, I’ve noticed that they have been dead for awhile, I just never addressed them. You see I have a long tree lined driveway so if I cut them down they’d leave a big empty space. So I keep putting it off. This morning as I was looking at them as I walked past I had this thought, why am I calling what’s dead alive? Why am I convincing myself that these dead trees don’t need to be cut down?

I think that can apply directly too many areas in our lives. There are sins, things that we have done in the dark, relationships that are nothing but draining, habits that bring us down that we keep persevering in, when really we need to let them go. Let me ask you, what in your life is dead that you’ve been calling alive? What things have been bringing you nothing but pain or habits that have done nothing but crushed your spirit over time that are so comfortable that you’re willing to live with them instead of cutting them out of your life? I’ve learned something a long time ago, freedom comes when truth is allowed. These things don’t bring life, they bring death. It’s time we stop putting it off, and cut them down.

Advertisements
Stop Calling Alive, What God Calls Dead

If He didn’t give it, I’m not taking it.

Artboard 1

How have you been recently? There are times where I answer that question almost too quickly, the typical “I’m Good” and then walk away. If I have to be honest though there are many many days where there is something trying to play on my mind or some sort of situation that is trying to steal my focus. Focus is so important and I can’t wait to share a few things that I’ve learned about the power of focus in the future, but today I wanted to share something that I have learned that has helped me so much. If God didn’t give it to me, I’m not taking it.

I have been seeing more and more people struggling. I’m not talking about, “oh man I don’t want to go to work” or “I need more money to pay the bills” type struggling, I’m talking about people making their default position in life all about doubting themselves and living in fear as well as anxiety. I’m not picking on anyone here, I have had many days as I said where I have experienced all of those things. I think though, that we need to make a choice and take a stand. I settled it deep in my heart a long time ago that once again if God didn’t give it, I’m not going to take it. Let me ask you a question, how many thoughts has the enemy tried to throw your way even this week, even today, that you just didn’t even put up a fight about, but instead accepted it as your own? Let me encourage you, we need to be people, men and women who when the thoughts come, when the fear and the worry and the doubts come, we pull a Reese Witherspoon and say, do you have any idea who I am, I am a child of the most high God, and if He didn’t give it to me, I’m not taking it. Relentless, to see the will of God come to pass as we take every thought captive in obedience to Christ Jesus! 

If He didn’t give it, I’m not taking it.

What Garlic Taught Me As A Christian

Garlic.png

So many people I know have been “under the weather” recently. I was talking to someone the other day and he was like, “man I’m trying not to get sick, my girlfriend is sick, people I work with are sick, I’ve been trying to avoid it but it’s hard because people are coughing all around me.” Personally I have a few secret weapons, garlic is one of them, during this season I take a lot of garlic via pills, they are super expensive though,  like $130 a box! But I stay healthy so I can’t really complain. I remember researching different garlic pills, some people were saying that the ones that leave no taste in your mouth are the best for obvious reasons, but there were a lot of people who said, stay away from those because, sure, they don’t leave a taste in your mouth but they also are not that effective. I got thinking about this for awhile, garlic pills with no taste are not effective. Just like a Ferrari with no engine isn’t effective, so much potential, it’s a beautiful car, it is capable of so many things. Garlic without taste, a Ferrari without an engine, how about I take the next few seconds and talk about a life of a Christian with no truth and therefore no power. It is not enough to know the name Jesus, even the demons know that name and tremble the bible says. When we are people who call ourselves Christians but then don’t live the life, by not choosing to seek out and walk forward in the power God has freely given to us, we are like a Ferrari with no engine, looks great on the outside, it might even attract people to itself. People might even want what we have, but as soon as they get to the inside and see what’s on the inside they realize there is actually nothing there to move anything froward with! Let me encourage you, God has gifted you with gifts and talents and a road map that is crystal clear called the Bible. How much are you seeking and studying it out? It’s not enough to have the title, we need the power as well to move it forward and accomplish all that God has for us to accomplish! 

What Garlic Taught Me As A Christian

Live Your Authentic

LiveYourAuthentic

The other day I went into a local Winners with my girlfriend. Honestly, I needed some socks because for the life of me I have no idea where mine end up. I don’t know if you have that problem, but it seems like I buy multiple pairs and then a couple of months later half of them are missing. Long story short, my girlfriend, Magna, found some clothes to try on. I was waiting next to the change room for her when one of the employees looked over at me. He asked if  we had any plans later that night because I was “all dressed up”. I told him that we just came from church and that started a great conversation.

It didn’t last very long, maybe 10-15 minutes, but during that time I was able to talk with this man openly about my faith and about who Jesus is not only to me but to him as well. He shared how he used to go to church all the time in Jamaica but that when he moved to Canada he stopped going. He talked about the confusion that the religion he was raised with brought him and how he was always taught that eating pork was a sin etc. Within five minutes of us talking though, this joy started to come out of him as I showed him truths that were in the Bible that he never knew about. I spoke openly, just being authentically myself, not hiding what I believe and not preaching either. Eventually my girlfriend came out of the change room and as we were leaving, he gave me a fist bump and told me it was great talking with me with a smile on his face. The funny thing is, that wasn’t the first time that had happened that day, it happened earlier as well.

I don’t know what it is, at the gym at restaurants at random stores these opportunities just seem to keep coming up. The weird thing is, they don’t feel forced. They feel natural. When I talk to people I don’t try and hold anything back for fear that they might not understand or judge me. I remember talking with this atheist once and as he would ask me questions, I’d respond with things like, “once I was reading the Word and the Holy Spirit just began to show me…” or “I was talking with God the other day and He said…”. You’d think that people would stop me and think I was crazy. I’m sure there would be people, including some Christians, that would have, but each time these people appreciated how real I was being. It’s funny how easy it is to talk with people when you’re just being authentically you.

The more I walk the halls of buildings, the more I start random conversations with people I have never met before, the more I see this deep need for truth, not another meditation self help guide, but a truth that transcends all of that. It comes from an authentic relationship with the one who created them. The thing that has been on my mind recently though can be summed up with Romans 10:14 “How can people have faith in the Lord and ask him to save them, if they have never heard about him? And how can they hear, unless someone tells them?” Let me encourage you, it might look like you speaking from a stage, or it might just simply look like you doing you as you live your life. Regardless be authentically who God has called you to be, not ashamed, but with hope that even the simple moments can change the world around you forever. It’s not complicated, it’s a real life spent serving a real God that has real solutions for real problems.

Live Your Authentic

Partnership

Partnership

How well do you know what God is doing in your life and in the lives of people around you? In Genesis 18 there is an interesting dialogue that God has with Abraham, God is planning on destroying a city whose “outcry”, whose sin is so perverse that it reached heaven. Before God ever goes and destroys the city in verse 17, He says something amazing. “The Lord said, Shall I hide from Abraham what I am about to do? …19 For I have chosen him that he may command his children and his household after him to keep the way of the Lord by doing righteousness and justice.”  If you know the story, God and Abraham have a conversation and Abraham multiple times talks God down from destroying the entire city. It’s an amazing story when you stop and think about what’s actually going on.

Jumping into present time, I have two dogs, I love them, their names are Rocky and Leo. Rocky is a St. Bernard and Leo is a Newfoundlander so I have two very big dogs. The other day Leo, our Newfoundlander, was acting strange. It wasn’t the first time that he had acted like this though. First, he jumped up on our couch and refused to move, he knows at our house he isn’t supposed to be on the couch so that was unusual for him. After I dragged him off the couch he ran over to the kitchen and jumped up with his two front paws on the kitchen countertop, but then he motioned to the cookie jar that we have. At first I didn’t get it, but then it clicked. It had been an unusual work day at my house so the dogs didn’t get fed because our schedules were all over the place. He was hungry and trying to get my attention so I’d feed him. The interesting thing is that he did this in the past and I just thought he was being disobedient. It was only after seeing this happen a few times that I finally figured it out and clued in. Why am I bringing this up?Well, I believe there are a lot of Christians running around who have no clue about what God is up to and what He is doing because they haven’t spent the time to get to know God and become His friend.

Abraham was the friend of God, because of that, God almighty, all powerful  literally turned aside and said, “Shall I hide from Abraham what I am about to do?” Because Abraham had such a relationship with God, he knew what God was up to. If you jump to Genesis 19 verse 27, Abraham goes back to the place where God told him what He was going to do and looked out at the city and saw the smoke from the destruction, and it doesn’t faze him. He knew what was going to happen, so he was prepared not just ahead of time, but was able to walk in peace and safety as it was happening and after it had happened. Too many of us have not put the time and work in to get to know God. We look for the shallow things the easy wins and don’t really press in saying things like, “only certain people can be so close to God” or “I would, but I don’t have the time”. As a result we run around not knowing what God has for us or what He’s doing in our workplaces, relationships or world. Sometimes I’m sure we think the devil is causing things to happen around us when it’s actually God! Let me encourage you, just like it took me time to understand and learn what my dog Leo was actually doing,  it’s going to take

time to develop that relationship with God. However, we need to be people who are secure and know what God is up to if we are going to be effective down here. Not immature Christians but mature adults that God can count on to partner with. So today, tomorrow, as we go into a new year. Let me encourage you, God has not removed His presence from this earth. He has not stopped working in the lives of your children, in your life or in your workplace or school. God is on the move, we just need to open up the communication to be able to see it.

God Bless,

Terry.

Partnership

Stewardship

Stewardship.jpg

Stewardship, the dictionary defines stewardship as, “the job of supervising or taking care of something, such as an organization or property.” As Christians we hear that word a lot when it comes to finances. We hear people all the time talking about how we need to manage and be good stewards of our money. I completely agree with that, however, I rarely hear the word stewardship used outside of that context.

At the end of each year, like most people, I like to think back on the year. I like to think about the things that I did, the things I didn’t do, the high points and the times that were challenging. It’s been a busy year for me, I overcame a lot, I also probably had a bit more stress then the average 25 year old should have had, but as I look back all of my experiences have brought me, especially during this last part of the year to one thought.

Am I being a good steward?

As I said earlier, we are told time and time again that we need to steward our money, but what about our thoughts? What about our time and our emotional energy? The longer I live the more I meet people who allow every single thought in their mind to dictate how they feel and how they perceive and live life as if every thought that ever hit their mind must be exactly right all of the time no exceptions. It’s a pretty crazy thing to think about. What if we brought that back to money. Let’s say every month when you got paid an unlimited amount of people could at any point and time choose to spend your money in any way they thought they should? You’d have no money left for anything! I think that can be said a lot of the time in regard to our thoughts and emotions. We so easily allow every single thought or idea to stir up all of this negative emotion, we allow that one look someone gave us or that one comment on social media that someone made to completely sway and dictate our days and lives. Let me encourage you, if we are going to live successful lives for God, if we are going to do all that we need to do here on earth, we need to do a better job at stewarding not just our finances, but also our thoughts, emotions and time. There are some thoughts that should have no room in our minds. There are some people that don’t deserve our emotional energy if they are going to constantly be abusive. Just like we would never allow a random stranger to have access to our bank accounts we shouldn’t allow the people around us to have free access to our emotions or give the enemy free access to our thoughts.

Before we get on with our busy lives let me leave you with some wisdom from Proverbs 4:26, “Ponder the path of your feet; then all your ways will be sure.” In the same way, let me encourage you to choose the things that you allow in your mind, then all of your ways will be sure. What if you woke up and started to feel anxious about the day but chose that anxiety is not something that God wants to give us therefore anxiety has no place in your thoughts and you dealt with it? How would our lives look.

Ask yourself that question, am I being a good steward? Not just with my finances, but with my time, my thoughts, my emotions?

Stewardship

Who Told You That You Couldn’t?

OldYou

Let me ask you a question, what do you think you’re capable of? Now why do you think that? Was it because you’ve tested your limits and figured that out. Was it because someone told you that you could only go that far because you were that gender or race, or is it maybe just because you assume that you’d never be able to do anything more then you are doing right now because you assume that you’re currently at your max?

I’ve been playing piano for about 15 years, I remember learning this particular song once, to help me learn it I did what I probably shouldn’t of done and went on youtube to get tips. There was a woman who was talking about it and as she was talking about the piece she got to a tricky part in the song and started to go on and on about how hard it was. I’m talking minutes worth of talking and explaining why it’s just so hard to play that particular part in the song. Because of that I started practising and whenever I got to that spot I’d stop and have such a hard time with it.  I remember bringing the piece of music to my piano teacher and as we were talking about it, I pointed out that tricky place and I said something along the lines of, “Man, isn’t that such a hard part in the song, it’s so difficult” she stopped looked at it and said, “It’s not hard you just have to distinguish the multiple voices…etc” I was convinced that it was so difficult yet she took one look and was convinced it was easy.

For time sake I should probably stick to just one story, but I also remember a similar situation. I was learning the different adobe products when I first got into video editing. I heard about this program that everyone was using called photoshop, so I was talking with the person who was teaching me video stuff and he heard I wanted to learn photoshop and said, “oh man that’s such a complicated program, I heard that the creators of photoshop don’t even know how to use it fully, they can’t even keep up with their own program it’s so complicated.” It’s been years since that conversation, and I can honestly say, it’s not that complicated. Actually I find it kind of easy once I started to learn it.

I shared both of those stories to say, who is it that we are going to listen to? How many things have we been believing that aren’t even true? How many people have come up to you and told you that you can’t because they couldn’t? How many parents because of their own un dealt with insecurities have passed on fears and hopelessness to their kids only for those kids to grow up and pass it down to the people around them? In a day and age where the enemy has mastered the art of convincing you of things that aren’t true, let me encourage you to get back to the simple truths. What does God say of you, who does He say you are and what does He say you can do? Anything more or less misses the mark.  I’ve watched friends of mine time and time again stop short of what I knew they could easily do.  Because someone or something had convinced them they couldn’t, they didn’t. Here’s the thing, we are all going to stand before God one day. With all that we did and didn’t do before Him. I don’t want to have those two words “what if” come up. Let me encourage you, you can. God would never give you anything that was beyond you. Believe, get that faith up and walk with confidence knowing that it’s not you, but God with you that is able to accomplish anything!

Who Told You That You Couldn’t?