Thursday, November 26, 2009

Inspirational 11/25/09 Thorns

Author: Unknown

Sandra felt as low as the heels of her Birkenstocks as she pushed against the November gust at the florist shop door. Her life had been easy, like a spring breeze. Then in the fourth month of her second pregnancy, a minor automobile accident stole her ease. During this Thanksgiving week she would have delivered a son. She grieved over her loss. As if that weren't enough, her husband's company threatened a transfer. Then her sister, whose holiday visit she coveted, called saying she could not come. What's worse, Sandra's friend infuriated her by suggesting her grief was a God-given path to maturity that would allow her to empathize with others who suffer.

"Had she lost a child? No-she has no idea what I'm feeling," Sandra shuddered. Thanksgiving? "Thankful for what?" she wondered. For a careless driver whose truck was hardly scratched when he rear-ended her? For an airbag that saved her life but took that of her child?

"Good afternoon, can I help you?" The flower shop clerk's approach startled her. "Sorry," said Jenny, "I just didn't want you to think I was ignoring you." "I....I need an arrangement."

"For Thanksgiving?" Sandra nodded. "Do you want beautiful but ordinary, or would you like to challenge the day with a customer favorite I call the Special." Jenny saw Sandra's curiosity and continued. "I'm convinced that flowers tell stories, that each arrangement insinuates a particular feeling. Are you looking for something that conveys gratitude this Thanksgiving?"

"Not exactly!" Sandra blurted. "Sorry, but in the last five months, everything that could go wrong has."

Sandra regretted her outburst but was surprised when Jenny said, "I have the perfect arrangement for you."

The door's small bell suddenly rang. "Barbara! Hi," Jenny said. She politely excused herself from Sandra and walked toward a small workroom. She quickly reappeared carrying a massive arrangement of greenery, bows, and long-stemmed thorny roses. Only, the ends of the rose stems were neatly snipped, no flowers.

"Want this in a box?" Jenny asked. Sandra watched for Barbara's response. Was this a joke? Who would want rose stems and no flowers! She waited for laughter, for someone to notice the absence of flowers atop the thorny stems, but neither woman did.

"Yes, please. It's exquisite," said Barbara. "You'd think after three years of getting the special, I'd not be so moved by its significance, but it's happening again. My family will love this one. Thanks."

Sandra stared. "Why so normal a conversation about so strange an arrangement?” she wondered. "Ah, said Sandra, pointing. "That lady just left with, ah....."


"Well, she had no flowers!"

"Right, I cut off the flowers."


Off. Yep. That's the Special. I call it the Thanksgiving Thorns Bouquet."

"But, why do people pay for that?" In spite of herself she chuckled."

"Do you really want to know?"

"I couldn't leave this shop without knowing. I'd think about nothing else!"

"That might be good," said Jenny. "Well," she continued, "Barbara came into the shop three years ago feeling very much like you feel today. She thought she had very little to be thankful for. She had lost her father to cancer, the family business was failing, her son was into drugs, and she faced major surgery."

"Ouch!" said Sandra.

"That same year, I lost my husband. I assumed complete responsibility for the shop and for the first time, spent the holidays alone. I had no children, no husband, no family nearby, and too great a debt to allow any travel."

"What did you do?"

"I learned to be thankful for thorns."

Sandra's eyebrows lifted. "Thorns?"

"I'm a Christian, Sandra. I've always thanked God for good things in life and I never thought to ask Him why good things happened to me? But, when bad stuff hit, did I ever ask! It took time to learn that dark times are important. I always enjoyed the 'flowers' of life but it took thorns to show me the beauty of God's comfort. You know, the Bible says that God comforts us when we're afflicted and from His consolation we learn to comfort others."

Sandra gasped. "A friend read that passage to me and I was furious! I guess the truth is I don't want comfort. I've lost a baby and I'm angry with God." She started to ask Jenny to "go on" when the door's bell diverted their attention.

"Hey, Phil!" shouted Jenny as a balding, rotund man entered the shop. She softly touched Sandra's arm and moved to welcome him. He tucked her under his side for a warm hug. "I'm here for twelve thorny long-stemmed stems!" Phil laughed, heartily.

"I figured as much," said Jenny. "I've got them ready." She lifted a tissue-wrapped arrangement from the refrigerated cabinet. "Beautiful," said Phil. "My wife will love them."

Sandra could not resist asking. "These are for your wife?" Phil saw that Sandra's curiosity matched his when he first heard of a Thorn Bouquet. Do you mind me asking, "Why thorns?"

In fact, I'm glad you asked," he said. "Four years ago my wife and I nearly divorced. After forty years, we were in a real mess, but we slogged through, problem by rotten problem. We rescued our marriage---our love, really. Last year at Thanksgiving I stopped in here for flowers. I must have mentioned surviving a tough process because Jenny told me that for a long time she kept a vase of rose thorned-stems!--as a reminder of what she learned from "thorny" times.

That was good enough for me. I took home stems. My wife and I decided to label each one for a specific thorny situation and give thanks for what the problem taught us. I'm pretty sure this stem review is becoming a tradition."

Phil paid Jenny, thanked her again and as he left, said to Sandra, "I highly recommend the Special!"

"I don't know if I can be thankful for the thorns in my life," Sandra said to Jenny.

"Well, my experience says that thorns make roses more precious. We treasure God's providential care more during trouble than at any other time. Remember, Sandra, Jesus wore a crown of thorns so that we might know His love. Do not resent thorns." Tears rolled down Sandra's cheeks. For the first time since the accident she loosened her grip on resentment. "I'll take twelve long-stemmed thorns, please."

"I hoped you would," Jenny said. "I'll have them ready in a minute. Then, every time you see them, remember to appreciate both good and hard times. We grow through both."

"Thank you. What do I owe you?"

"Nothing. Nothing but a pledge to work toward healing your heart. The first year's arrangement is always on me."

Jenny handed a card to Sandra. "I'll attach a card like this to your arrangement but maybe you'd like to read it first. Go ahead, read it." My God, I have never thanked Thee for my thorns! I have thanked Thee a thousand times for my roses, but never once for my thorns. Teach me the glory of the cross I bear, teach me the value of my thorns. Show me that I have climbed to Thee by the path of pain. Show me that my tears have made my rainbow. --George Matheson

Jenny said, "Happy Thanksgiving, Sandra," handing her the Special." "I look forward to our knowing each other better."

Sandra smiled. She turned, opened the door and walked toward hope.

“Enter into his gates with thanksgiving, and into his courts with praise: be thankful unto him, and bless his name.” –Psalm 100:4

“Gaan sy poorte in met lof, sy voorhowe met lofgesang; loof Hom, prys sy Naam.” –Psalm 100:4
In His Service,
Sherry and Jim Heard
Sherry’s Inspirational list

MISSION STATEMENT: Our mission is to be the channel, not the source, through which we pray God’s blessings may flow to others. Our ministry is not to provide counseling, advice, or doctrinal interpretation. For this we refer you to local spiritual leaders who may know and deal with your needs more personally. It is our prayer that God may truly bless your day through the inspiration we seek to channel your way. In Him, Sherry and Jim Heard

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Thursday, October 22, 2009

Fearless 10/21/09 Kay

1Sa 17:4 And there came out from the camp of the Philistines a champion named Goliath of Gath, whose height was six cubits and a span.
1Sa 17:5 He had a helmet of bronze on his head, and he was armed with a coat of mail, and the weight of the coat was five thousand shekels of bronze.
1Sa 17:6 And he had bronze armor on his legs, and a javelin of bronze slung between his shoulders.
1Sa 17:7 The shaft of his spear was like a weaver's beam, and his spear's head weighed six hundred shekels of iron. And his shield-bearer went before him.
1Sa 17:8 He stood and shouted to the ranks of Israel, "Why have you come out to draw up for battle? Am I not a Philistine, and are you not servants of Saul? Choose a man for yourselves, and let him come down to me.
1Sa 17:9 If he is able to fight with me and kill me, then we will be your servants. But if I prevail against him and kill him, then you shall be our servants and serve us."
1Sa 17:10 And the Philistine said, "I defy the ranks of Israel this day. Give me a man, that we may fight together."
1Sa 17:11 When Saul and all Israel heard these words of the Philistine, they were dismayed and greatly afraid.

In our lives we will face a Goliath
What is your Goliath?
You don’t want to talk about it because you cant defeat it
Addiction to ...whatever...
You don’t see any hope
Some people have a hard time identifying it because it has become such a part of you
You might have the right words but you have no intention of fighting because you are afraid

1Sa 17:12 Now David was the son of an Ephrathite of Bethlehem in Judah, named Jesse, who had eight sons. In the days of Saul the man was already old and advanced in years.
1Sa 17:13 The three oldest sons of Jesse had followed Saul to the battle. And the names of his three sons who went to the battle were Eliab the firstborn, and next to him Abinadab, and the third Shammah.
1Sa 17:14 David was the youngest. The three eldest followed Saul,
1Sa 17:15 but David went back and forth from Saul to feed his father's sheep at Bethlehem.
1Sa 17:16 For forty days the Philistine came forward and took his stand, morning and evening.
1Sa 17:17 And Jesse said to David his son, "Take for your brothers an ephah of this parched grain, and these ten loaves, and carry them quickly to the camp to your brothers.
1Sa 17:18 Also take these ten cheeses to the commander of their thousand. See if your brothers are well, and bring some token from them."
1Sa 17:19 Now Saul and they and all the men of Israel were in the Valley of Elah, fighting with the Philistines.
1Sa 17:20 And David rose early in the morning and left the sheep with a keeper and took the provisions and went, as Jesse had commanded him. And he came to the encampment as the host was going out to the battle line, shouting the war cry.
1Sa 17:21 And Israel and the Philistines drew up for battle, army against army.
1Sa 17:22 And David left the things in charge of the keeper of the baggage and ran to the ranks and went and greeted his brothers.
1Sa 17:23 As he talked with them, behold, the champion, the Philistine of Gath, Goliath by name, came up out of the ranks of the Philistines and spoke the same words as before. And David heard him.

The first thing you need to do is hear the lies of your goliath so you can recognize them as lies
Knowing the truth is how you identify the truth
What lies are you believing or ignoring? (ie: you cant have a healthy marriage. you can't break this addiction. belief in God is a joke you are on your own. you are a loser, failure, etc.)
Hear the lies but know the truth

1Sa 17:24 All the men of Israel, when they saw the man, fled from him and were much afraid.
1Sa 17:25 And the men of Israel said, "Have you seen this man who has come up? Surely he has come up to defy Israel. And the king will enrich the man who kills him with great riches and will give him his daughter and make his father's house free in Israel."
1Sa 17:26 And David said to the men who stood by him, "What shall be done for the man who kills this Philistine and takes away the reproach from Israel? For who is this uncircumcised Philistine, that he should defy the armies of the living God?"
1Sa 17:27 And the people answered him in the same way, "So shall it be done to the man who kills him."
1Sa 17:28 Now Eliab his eldest brother heard when he spoke to the men. And Eliab's anger was kindled against David, and he said, "Why have you come down? And with whom have you left those few sheep in the wilderness? I know your presumption and the evil of your heart, for you have come down to see the battle."
1Sa 17:29 And David said, "What have I done now? Was it not but a word?"
1Sa 17:30 And he turned away from him toward another, and spoke in the same way, and the people answered him again as before.
1Sa 17:31 When the words that David spoke were heard, they repeated them before Saul, and he sent for him.
1Sa 17:32 And David said to Saul, "Let no man's heart fail because of him. Your servant will go and fight with this Philistine."
1Sa 17:33 And Saul said to David, "You are not able to go against this Philistine to fight with him, for you are but a youth, and he has been a man of war from his youth."

Second, do not listen to the naysayers
Remember when God did something in your life
David remembered the lion and bear

1Sa 17:34 But David said to Saul, "Your servant used to keep sheep for his father. And when there came a lion, or a bear, and took a lamb from the flock,
1Sa 17:35 I went after him and struck him and delivered it out of his mouth. And if he arose against me, I caught him by his beard and struck him and killed him.
1Sa 17:36 Your servant has struck down both lions and bears, and this uncircumcised Philistine shall be like one of them, for he has defied the armies of the living God."
1Sa 17:37 And David said, "The LORD who delivered me from the paw of the lion and from the paw of the bear will deliver me from the hand of this Philistine." And Saul said to David, "Go, and the LORD be with you!"

Remember when God DID IT

When people say that He won't or can't, you can remember your God stories.

1Sa 17:38 Then Saul clothed David with his armor. He put a helmet of bronze on his head and clothed him with a coat of mail,
1Sa 17:39 and David strapped his sword over his armor. And he tried in vain to go, for he had not tested them. Then David said to Saul, "I cannot go with these, for I have not tested them." So David put them off.
1Sa 17:40 Then he took his staff in his hand and chose five smooth stones from the brook and put them in his shepherd's pouch. His sling was in his hand, and he approached the Philistine.
1Sa 17:41 And the Philistine moved forward and came near to David, with his shield-bearer in front of him.
1Sa 17:42 And when the Philistine looked and saw David, he disdained him, for he was but a youth, ruddy and handsome in appearance.
1Sa 17:43 And the Philistine said to David, "Am I a dog, that you come to me with sticks?" And the Philistine cursed David by his gods.
1Sa 17:44 The Philistine said to David, "Come to me, and I will give your flesh to the birds of the air and to the beasts of the field."

The giant wasn't impressed.
Third: Don't focus on the giant, focus on God!
Don’t compare yourself to the giant
When you bet on the giant your focus is misplaced
There is no way without God that we can defeat the giant
We need to compare our giant to our God

This day the lord will hand you over to me

1Sa 17:45 Then David said to the Philistine, "You come to me with a sword and with a spear and with a javelin, but I come to you in the name of the LORD of hosts, the God of the armies of Israel, whom you have defied.
1Sa 17:46 This day the LORD will deliver you into my hand, and I will strike you down and cut off your head. And I will give the dead bodies of the host of the Philistines this day to the birds of the air and to the wild beasts of the earth, that all the earth may know that there is a God in Israel,
1Sa 17:47 and that all this assembly may know that the LORD saves not with sword and spear. For the battle is the LORD's, and he will give you into our hand."

First hear the lies because you know the truth
Second don’t focus on the naysayers, remember when God did it
Third don’t focus on the giant, focus on God

1Sa 17:48 When the Philistine arose and came and drew near to meet David, David ran quickly toward the battle line to meet the Philistine.
1Sa 17:49 And David put his hand in his bag and took out a stone and slung it and struck the Philistine on his forehead. The stone sank into his forehead, and he fell on his face to the ground.
1Sa 17:50 So David prevailed over the Philistine with a sling and with a stone, and struck the Philistine and killed him. There was no sword in the hand of David.
1Sa 17:51 Then David ran and stood over the Philistine and took his sword and drew it out of its sheath and killed him and cut off his head with it. When the Philistines saw that their champion was dead, they fled.

Remember the story of the baby bear up against the mtn lion, he tried to look scary, but the lion wasn’t afraid until momma bear came up behind the baby bear.

If you think you can do something to defeat the giant it is like David trying to wear Saul’s armor

We have to get still and listen to God to find out what our part is. God is not going to shout over the noise of your life

David ran at Goliath, he didn't wait

David stayed close enough to God to know His voice

When we fear we need to go to God first. When we experience God's presence all the time then we won't have to stop and say ok God what do you want me to do? We will know His presence and voice.

God used the skill that David had developed in the wilderness.

Thursday, October 15, 2009

Fear of Lack

Fear of Lack 10/14/09 Kay Cardell McCullough

“For God hath not given us the spirit of fear; but of power, and of love, and of a sound mind.” 2 Timothy 1:7

Fear of running out.

“Now go and smite Amalek, and utterly destroy all that they have, and spare them not; but slay both man and woman, infant and suckling, ox and sheep, camel and ass. And Saul gathered the people together, and numbered them in Telaim, two hundred thousand footmen, and ten thousand men of Judah. And Saul came to a city of Amalek, and laid wait in the valley. And Saul said unto the Kenites, Go, depart, get you down from among the Amalekites, lest I destroy you with them: for ye shewed kindness to all the children of Israel, when they came up out of Egypt. So the Kenites departed from among the Amalekites. And Saul smote the Amalekites from Havilah until thou comest to Shur, that is over against Egypt. And he took Agag the king of the Amalekites alive, and utterly destroyed all the people with the edge of the sword. But Saul and the people spared Agag, and the best of the sheep, and of the oxen, and of the fatlings, and the lambs, and all that was good, and would not utterly destroy them: but every thing that was vile and refuse, that they destroyed utterly.” 1 Samuel 15:3-9

Saul was a coward Jonathan was courageous.

Jonathan lived his life with a mindset of abundance.

Saul lived his life with a mindset of lack.

Not enough hours in the day.

Money does not grow on trees.

A mindset of scarcity is a fear that there is not enough.

What is it for you that you cannot let go of, do without, run out of?

Monkey with hand in little hole of coconut won’t let go of rice so he gets caught.

You are in prison to that which you cannot risk losing.

If you let go God will give you something better.

1. People's approval

2. Money/things/home/food

3. Affection/love

4. Control/manipulation/no one else can do it better than me

What you have is irrelevant to what you need when you live out of a fear of lack.

The moment that we invite Christ to invade our lives everything becomes ours.

Living out of abundance starts with:

1. Knowing God as our unlimited supply not with mind but with our lifestyle

2. Knowing what He can do through me

“And Jonathan said to the young man that bare his armour, Come, and let us go over unto the garrison of these uncircumcised: it may be that the LORD will work for us: for there is no restraint to the LORD to save by many or by few.” 1 Samuel 14:6

What happens when you live out of abundance:

1. You will pick risky fights because you have nothing to lose

· “And that first slaughter, which Jonathan and his armourbearer made, was about twenty men, within as it were an half acre of land, which a yoke of oxen might plow. And there was trembling in the host, in the field, and among all the people: the garrison, and the spoilers, they also trembled, and the earth quaked: so it was a very great trembling.” 1 Samuel 14:14-15

· You give when you are drowning in debt, and God opens up the blessings.

· Marriage falling apart? Pick a fight for your spouse instead of with them, pray that God blesses them and humbles you. God will restore.

· Praying for a child: pick a fight against your spiritual enemy and one day their ground will shake. Keep praying for them.

2. Will live recklessly selfless lives

· when you know who you are in Christ you do not have to live for yourself. God gets the glory.

· “And when he had called the people unto him with his disciples also, he said unto them, Whosoever will come after me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross, and follow me. For whosoever will save his life shall lose it; but whosoever shall lose his life for my sake and the gospel's, the same shall save it. For what shall it profit a man, if he shall gain the whole world, and lose his own soul?” Mark 8:34-36

When your daddy makes the donuts there is always more than enough. money may not grow on trees, but when your daddy makes the trees it doesn't matter.

When your daddy makes forgiveness and love there is plenty forgiveness and love.

It’s not about me but I thought it was.

What would you do for God if you knew you could not fail?

Needing to be in control is not trusting God.

Friday, October 2, 2009

Inspirational 10/02/09 Strength vs. Weakness

Strength vs. Weakness

Author: Unknown

The following is the story of one 10-year-old boy who decided to study judo despite the fact that he had lost his left arm in a devastating car accident.

The boy began lessons with an old Japanese judo master. The boy was doing well, so he couldn't understand why, after three months of training, the master had taught him only one move.

“Sensei,” the boy finally said, “Shouldn't I be learning more moves?”

“This is the only move you know, but this is the only move you'll ever need to know,” the sensei replied.

Not quite understanding, but believing in his teacher, the boy kept training.

Several months later, the sensei took the boy to his first tournament. Surprising himself, the boy easily won his first two matches. The third match proved to be more difficult, but after some time, his opponent became impatient and charged; the boy deftly used his one move to win the match. Still amazed by his success, the boy was now in the finals.

This time, his opponent was bigger, stronger, and more experienced. For a while, the boy appeared to be overmatched. Concerned that the boy might get hurt, the referee called a time out. He was about to stop the match when the sensei intervened.

“No,” the sensei insisted, “Let him continue.”

Soon after the match resumed, his opponent made a critical mistake; He dropped his guard. Instantly, the boy used his move to pin him. The boy had won the match and the tournament. He was the champion.

On the way home, the boy and the sensei reviewed every move in each and every match. Then the boy summoned the courage to ask what was really on his mind.

“Sensei, how did I win the tournament with only one move?”

“You won for two reasons,” the sensei answered. “First, you've almost mastered one of the most difficult throws in all of judo. And second, the only known defense for that move is for your opponent to grab your left arm.”

The boy's biggest weakness had become his biggest strength.

Now our biggest weakness is that we are human but that can be turned into the biggest strength once we let go and let God. God working through us is the greatest thing in our lives.

“And he said unto me, My grace is sufficient for thee: for my strength is made perfect in weakness. Most gladly therefore will I rather glory in my infirmities, that the power of Christ may rest upon me.” -2 Corinthians 12:9

“En Hy het vir my gesê: My genade is vir jou genoeg, want my krag word in swakheid volbring. Baie liewer sal ek dus in my swakhede roem, sodat die krag van Christus in my kan woon.” -2 Corinthians 12:9
In His Service,
< Sherry and Jim Heard
Sherry’s Inspirational list

MISSION STATEMENT: Our mission is to be the channel, not the source, through which we pray God’s blessings may flow to others. Our ministry is not to provide counseling, advice, or doctrinal interpretation. For this we refer you to local spiritual leaders who may know and deal with your needs more personally. It is our prayer that God may truly bless your day through the inspiration we seek to channel your way. In Him, Sherry and Jim Heard

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Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Inspirational 09/16/09 Dust If You Must

Dust If You Must
Author: Unknown

Dust if you must.
But wouldn't it be better
to paint a picture, or write a letter,
bake a cake, or plant a seed.
Ponder the difference between want and need.

Dust if you must.
But there is not much time,
with rivers to swim and mountains to climb!
Music to hear, and books to read,
friends to cherish and life to lead.

Dust if you must.
But the world's out there
with the sun in your eyes, the wind in your hair,
a flutter of snow, a shower of rain.
This day will not come round again.

Dust if you must.
But bear in mind,
old age will come and it's not kind.
And when you go, and go you must,
you, yourself, will make more dust.

“Whereas ye know not what shall be on the morrow. For what is your life? It is even a vapour, that appeareth for a little time, and then vanisheth away.” - James 4:14

“julle wat nie eens weet wat môre sal gebeur nie. Want hoedanig is julle lewe? Dit is tog maar 'n damp wat vir 'n kort tydjie verskyn en daarna verdwyn.” - James 4:14
In His Service, <>< Sherry and Jim Heard
Sherry’s Inspirational list

MISSION STATEMENT: Our mission is to be the channel, not the source, through which we pray God’s blessings may flow to others. Our ministry is not to provide counseling, advice, or doctrinal interpretation. For this we refer you to local spiritual leaders who may know and deal with your needs more personally. It is our prayer that God may truly bless your day through the inspiration we seek to channel your way. In Him, Sherry and Jim Heard

When forwarding / copying, please include the entire message.

To subscribe please send an email to:

We invite you to visit our website at:

09/13/09 Rev. Steven Hedgecoth The Way – The Path

In the way of righteousness is life; and in the pathway thereof there is no death. Proverbs 12:28 KJV

Thou compassest my path and my lying down, and art acquainted with all my ways. Psalm 139:3 KJV

What direction is your life going?

“There is a way which seemeth right unto a man, but the end thereof are the ways of death.” Proverbs 14:12 KJV

“There is a way that seemeth right unto a man, but the end thereof are the ways of death.” Proverbs 16:25 KJV

If it is repeated that is a flashing neon light. Don’t run this stop sign, you might get hurt! You are going somewhere, there is a way/path. The way that seems right to man. Your path is leading you somewhere. Where is it going? If you are not going forward then you are going backward. Your choices determine your direction. Are you growing or dying? Even if you are going in circles you are going somewhere. Maybe God is trying to show you something. Look around. What are you surrounded by? Death or life? Is death all around you? Are you traveling the path of least resistance? It is the easy path to fall instead of stand, to sin instead of doing right, use drugs instead of staying clean, have affair instead of staying faithful, etc.

Our own wisdom will tell us to do the wrong thing. “I just don’t know what else to do” Beware of this statement!

But its end is the way of death.

When you are walking on a path that just dead ends – TURN AROUND!

No matter how much you have put into that path, it is death, turn around.

“Thomas saith unto him, Lord, we know not whither thou goest; and how can we know the way? Jesus saith unto him, I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me.” John 14:5-6 KJV

Thomas was REAL. He was speaking for WE, not just himself.

If your path always leads to life then you are following Jesus. He doesn’t want to drive for you. He wants you to choose to follow Him. Sometimes Jesus is telling you to make a U turn. Even if you don’t see where to turn around. Turn around. Don’t unplug Jesus (GPS) just follow him. Plug into the Holy Spirit.

“But I don’t know what else to do,” then shut up and turn around. We need to get off the death roads.

Friday, September 11, 2009

09/11/09 Meditation

I have heard it simply defined that prayer is speaking or asking while meditation is listening or waiting.

When was the last time you tried to sit still and quiet your mind to listen to God?

Why is it so difficult for us as humans to be quiet? I mean quieting ourselves outwardly is one thing, turning off the TV, radio, computer, etc., but inside. Wow that is hard! Turning off all the outward things and shutting my own mouth is nothing when compared to shutting off the human mind. Did God make us this way or is it a product of our society and this time? I wonder if the men (and women) of biblical times had this issue?

So perhaps the reason that it is so difficult is because of the rewards. If it were easy then everyone would be doing it and the rewards would not be so valuable to us. The reward is something so great that it requires effort to attain it. So many people want something for nothing today that we forget the benefit of effort. If everything is free then it loses value.

But then there is salvation. Salvation is free, and while the actual value of it has not been diminished many people’s perception of it may have.

Sunday, September 6, 2009

Notes from today’s sermon 09.06.09 David Clark


We are valuable

Be careful what you put in your heart because it will come out your mouth.

“And Moses took the tabernacle, and pitched it without the camp, afar off from the camp, and called it the Tabernacle of the congregation. And it came to pass, that every one which sought the LORD went out unto the tabernacle of the congregation, which was without the camp. And it came to pass, when Moses went out unto the tabernacle, that all the people rose up, and stood every man at his tent door, and looked after Moses, until he was gone into the tabernacle. And it came to pass, as Moses entered into the tabernacle, the cloudy pillar descended, and stood at the door of the tabernacle, and the LORD talked with Moses. And all the people saw the cloudy pillar stand at the tabernacle door: and all the people rose up and worshipped, every man in his tent door. And the LORD spake unto Moses face to face, as a man speaketh unto his friend. And he turned again into the camp: but his servant Joshua, the son of Nun, a young man, departed not out of the tabernacle. And Moses said unto the LORD, See, thou sayest unto me, Bring up this people: and thou hast not let me know whom thou wilt send with me. Yet thou hast said, I know thee by name, and thou hast also found grace in my sight. Now therefore, I pray thee, if I have found grace in thy sight, shew me now thy way, that I may know thee, that I may find grace in thy sight: and consider that this nation is thy people. And he said, My presence shall go with thee, and I will give thee rest.” (Exodus 33:7-14 KJV)

People will see what you do and praise your earthly father, it is the same with your heavenly father.

The number one management principle is that people do what people see. We are all copy cats, think “the wave”.

You are being watched, you are being read.

Prayer is not natural for us, that is why we don’t pray.

1. Regularly – Separate yourself regularly v.7

You can overcome through prayer. Go outside the camp. The deeper relationship is in private. Seek God in every thing. “And in the morning, rising up a great while before day, he went out, and departed into a solitary place, and there prayed.” (Mark 1:35 KJV) “And he was withdrawn from them about a stone's cast, and kneeled down, and prayed,” (Luke 22:41 KJV) “Arise therefore, and get thee down, and go with them, doubting nothing: for I have sent them.” (Acts 10:20 KJV)

2. Privately – Seek God with all your heart v.7

Seek truth over popularity. Moses sought the Lord. Take time to wait on God (LISTEN). What we look at is what we think about and what we become. When Samuel showed up people paid attention. When he spoke people listened.

3. Sincerely – He was watched by the public v.8

Moses realized that he didn’t have the answers. When God told Moses that he would not go with them Moses said then I will stay here with you. Not ashamed of spouse, don’t be ashamed of God. “The Spirit of the Lord is upon me, because he hath anointed me to preach the gospel to the poor; he hath sent me to heal the brokenhearted, to preach deliverance to the captives, and recovering of sight to the blind, to set at liberty them that are bruised, To preach the acceptable year of the Lord. And he closed the book, and he gave it again to the minister, and sat down. And the eyes of all them that were in the synagogue were fastened on him.” (Luke 4:18-20 KJV)

4. Powerfully – Listen & Obey God’s voice.

Prayer should be a mighty habit. Let Him talk. He already knows who you are and what you need. Are we going to believe in the world more than the word of God? Learn to listen and obey.

5. Covenant – Enter covenant partnership with God. v.9

Are we faithful? Don’t give up. We will reap in due season. He desires us more than our talents or works. Mary versus Martha.

Friday, September 4, 2009

09/02/09 Rev. Steven Hedgecoth Proverbs


We make life and death decisions more often than you may know.

You make life and death decisions with:

1. Money

2. Family

3. Job

4. Weakness

“For at the window of my house I looked forth through my lattice; And I beheld among the simple ones, I discerned among the youths, A young man void of understanding, Passing through the street near her corner; And he went the way to her house, In the twilight, in the evening of the day, In the middle of the night and in the darkness. And, behold, there met him a woman With the attire of a harlot, and wily of heart. She is clamorous and wilful; Her feet abide not in her house: Now she is in the streets, now in the broad places, And lieth in wait at every corner. So she caught him, and kissed him, And with an impudent face she said unto him:” - Proverbs 7:6-13 ASV

“Abstain from all appearance of evil.” -1 Thessalonians 5:22 KJV

Making the right decision is hard, the wrong decision is easy, until you gain experience making the right decision.

Your life is the total of your decisions.

Do you own your decisions? Or do you blame someone else? (IE: it’s not my fault)
Your life right now is a result of your decisions.

What is guiding your decisions?

If we feel lost we will let anything guide us.

“There is a way which seemeth right unto a man; But the end thereof are the ways of death.” - Proverbs 14:12 ASV

“Hear counsel, and receive instruction, That thou mayest be wise in thy latter end.” - Proverbs 19:20 ASV

1. Listen-hear intelligently, not selective, but smart hearing.
Counsel-to hear advice

“Apply thy heart unto instruction, And thine ears to the words of knowledge.” -Proverbs 23:12 ASV

2. Accept discipline-choose to take hold of

We want to run away from it

If you want to be wise then learn to listen to counsel and take hold of discipline.

The fruit of wisdom is your decisions.

If you are faced with a life or death decision the first thing you should do is seek God.

“For Jehovah giveth wisdom; Out of his mouth cometh knowledge and understanding: He layeth up sound wisdom for the upright; He is a shield to them that walk in integrity;” -Proverbs 2:6-7 ASV

“Trust in Jehovah with all thy heart, And lean not upon thine own understanding:” -Proverbs 3:5 ASV

We only trust those that we are in intimate relationships with
I love them that love me; And those that seek me diligently shall find me.
Proverbs 8:17 ASV

If you are praying about something God has already spoken about in the word, He may not answer but instead tell you to search it out.

1. You need a relationship with the word of God. The word should be the FRIST place you go for guidance. Any issue under heaven can be answered in the Word. If you are diligently seeking the Holy Spirit will light on it

“Every word of God is tried: He is a shield unto them that take refuge in him.” -Proverbs 30:5 ASV

When this word is inside of you it is what comes out during difficult moments.

2. We need a relationship with the spirit.

“Turn you at my reproof: Behold, I will pour out my spirit upon you; I will make known my words unto you.” -Proverbs 1:23 ASV

“The hearing ear, and the seeing eye, Jehovah hath made even both of them.” - Proverbs 20:12 ASV

“That the wise man may hear, and increase in learning; And that the man of understanding may attain unto sound counsels:” - Proverbs 1:5 ASV

If we are not increasing our learning we are not wise.

God is just waiting for you to ask.

If you want more wisdom then plan to move forward

“Take fast hold of instruction; let her not go: Keep her; for she is thy life.” -Proverbs 4:13 ASV

“The way of a fool is right in his own eyes; But he that is wise hearkeneth unto counsel.” -Proverbs 12:15 ASV

“Where there is no counsel, purposes are disappointed; But in the multitude of counsellors they are established.” - Proverbs 15:22 ASV

“Where no wise guidance is, the people falleth; But in the multitude of counsellors there is safety.” -Proverbs 11:14 ASV

“Every purpose is established by counsel; And by wise guidance make thou war.” - Proverbs 20:18 ASV

People not to receive counsel from

1. People who break the rules, who feel like they are above the law. “Whoso keepeth the law is a wise son; But he that is a companion of gluttons shameth his father.” - Proverbs 28:7 ASV

2. Smooth talker “A man that flattereth his neighbour spreadeth a net for his feet.” - Proverbs 29:5 KJV

3. Someone without integrity “Whoso is partner with a thief hateth his own soul; He heareth the adjuration and uttereth nothing.” - Proverbs 29:24 ASV

If you need a counselor first determine why you need counsel, then you can begin to choose.

A lot of times they will confirm what God has already spoken to you. Sometimes it will be something you have never thought of, but it will ring true in your spirit. Sometimes they will speak about the road blocks you keep running over, without you knowing that you are.

Know that they seek after God.

“Walk with wise men, and thou shalt be wise; But the companion of fools shall smart for it.” - Proverbs 13:20 ASV

We like to mirror others, so when you hang out with wise people you want to be wise.

Life or death decision:

1. Seek God

Look into the word

2. Seek counsel

Sunday, August 30, 2009

Notes from today’s sermon 08.30.09 Steven Hedgecoth

The Knots of Relationships

And let us consider one another to provoke unto love and to good works: Not forsaking the assembling of ourselves together, as the manner of some is; but exhorting one another: and so much the more, as ye see the day approaching. (Hebrews 10:24-25 KJV)

By this shall all men know that ye are my disciples, if ye have love one to another. (John 13:35 KJV)

Connecting the dots of relationships.

Relationships are everything.

The way you love one another shows Christ to the world.

Love is not a feeling it is an action.

Tie the knot – Make sure it is:

1. Tight

2. Right

You need a vision for your family so you can climb the mountain together.

“Two are better than one; because they have a good reward for their labour. For if they fall, the one will lift up his fellow: but woe to him that is alone when he falleth; for he hath not another to help him up. Again, if two lie together, then they have heat: but how can one be warm alone? And if one prevail against him, two shall withstand him; and a threefold cord is not quickly broken.”(Ecclesiastes 4:9-12 KJV)

There are some places that I am not going to walk with others that are not tied to me.

3 Three Knots That You Need To Tie

1. Knot Of Effort – v.9 keyword work/labor

Love goes the extra mile.

Some of us are satisfied with lasting relationships instead of growing relationships

Ways To Show Effort

a. Become a student of that relationship/person

Know the strengths and weaknesses

“And we beseech you, brethren, to know them which labour among you, and are over you in the Lord, and admonish you;”

(1 Thessalonians 5:12 KJV)

b. Praying together and not just over a meal

What would it be like if you grabbed your spouse and said I want to pray with you, right now, out loud, together? We don’t mind being physically intimate, but what about spiritually?

2. Search Me Knot –

Search me, O God, and know my heart: try me, and know my thoughts: And see if there be any wicked way in me, and lead me in the way everlasting.

(Psalm 139:23-24 KJV)

What would happen if we had the courage to ask God to search me (not our spouse)?

Examine my thought process

Search my heart – secret places

Sin will untie knots

Am I doing anything hurtful?

Am I saying anything hurtful?

If your relationship draws you away from God, then there is a problem.

When your spouse looks at you do they see Jesus in all that you do and say?

Ask not what your family can do for you, ask what you can do for your family.

3. Divine Knot –

“A Song of degrees for Solomon. Except the LORD build the house, they labour in vain that build it: except the LORD keep the city, the watchman waketh but in vain. It is vain for you to rise up early, to sit up late, to eat the bread of sorrows: for so he giveth his beloved sleep.”

(Psalms 127:1-2 KJV)

At the core of all your relationships should be Jesus.

Benefits of the Divine Knot:

a. Provision of God v.2b

b. Protection of God v.1b

c. Blessings of God v.2b

The divine knot helps you know who to turn to when it gets rough.

The enemy is after our families.

Lies of the enemy:

a. It is OK to tie the knot a different way, like co-habitation

b. Same sex is not marriage, knot must be right and tight God’s way

c. Divorce is ok – divorce is the disease of families

God can heal relationships.

If God puts something inside you and you do nothing with it then that is sin.