Sunday, December 28, 2014


Isaiah 1:18, "Though your sins be as scarlet
they shall be as white as snow..."
Coral, blush, rose, hot, salmon, fuchsia, magenta, fandango puce, amaranth, or lemonade, I love the color pink!  But I must say, it has a different meaning for me now that I'm engulfed in a novel that a sweet sister gave me over the holidays!  It's entitled, Living in the Pink, by Christian author, Sharon Tubbs.  When you get a chance pick up a's riveting, eye-opening, and well, if you're one of those people who seem to be constantly drifting spiritually...very convicting!

While the secular world is waiting with baited breath, for the film version of that scandalous novel, Fifty Shades of Gray,  premiering around Valentine's Day.  I thought I'd catch you a bit early and bend your ear toward something that might do you some real good!  The New Year is just around the corner and I already know that for the majority,  new year's resolutions have been rattling around in your brain!  

Yep!  I still plan on losing those same ten pounds I resolved to lose last January.  Going to get myself together and go back and finish my degree.  Even start having Quiet Time every morning, and for real now, I'm going to get up for Sunday school, morning service, and prayer meeting in 2015.
Sound familiar? 

That's all well and good... making spiritual-like resolutions puts you right with the norm for Christians this time of year and just like the average Saint, by Easter, you've backslidden  into your same old habits!  How about trying something different, like working on those things that need fixing on the inside first!  Those things that keep you living in the pink instead of the white, bright righteousness of Jesus Christ.  

Straddling the fence between worldly living and holy living is what Sister Tubbs calls living in the pink...just a tinge of Jesus' blood characterizes our life...we're not completely low-down and heathenish, we just slip in and out of sin periodically!  We show up for church every Sunday, but hide out in the corners and the balcony because we don't want anyone to smell the weed and liquor that still lingers after clubbing the night before!  (That's living in the pink!)

You really want to join a ministry, you know you have the gift and passion to help serve, but too many folks at church know that you're still living unwed with your boyfriend and you just ain't about to be confronted with that..they don't know that you're just saving up for the wedding!    (You're still living in the pink)

Where  in the bible does it say, you can't play the lottery?  It's just a bit of harmless entertainment.  After all when I hit, I swear, I'm going to pay the Lord big time! That'll make up for all those months I couldn't pay my tithes!!  (There's some pink dabbling 

 there too!)

Don't get me wrong...I know what it means to live in the pink!  Denying my faith for a season of fleshly pleasure...but as my Mama used to say..."When you know better you do better!" 2015 should be a time to do better --DON'T THINK PINK...THINK RED...THE COLOR OF CHRIST'S PRECIOUS BLOOD (Hebrews 9:22) Without it Where would we be? 

Ephesians 4:14-16 (Message Bible)
...God wants us to grow up, to know the whole truth and tell it in love. We take our lead from Christ, who is the source of everything we do. He keeps us in step with each other. His very breath and blood flow through us, nourishing us so that we will grow up healthy in God, robust in love.

Sunday, December 21, 2014


It's only a few days before Christmas and I haven't yet gotten around to decorating for the holiday!  No, I'm not a Scrooge or Grinch and I certainly love this time of year... I just haven't felt like dragging all the boxes from the basement!

The grandkids will be over tomorrow and I'm counting on them to give me the extra boost to get it done.  Still, they're in for a surprise if they're looking for a tree with ornaments.  I haven't put up one for years! Instead I've opted for the classic Nativity scene beautifully molded and painted with all the central characters of the bible under a wooden creche displayed in a couple of places in my home.

The largest one lights up with a warm glow and that really puts me in the Christmas mood but it also reminds me how wrong the manufacturers got the bible story!  You may have too!
So let me tell you five things you need to know about the Christmas story from the New Testament gospels:
  • Although the song goes We Three Kings...there were probably more who came to visit Christ. They brought three kinds of gifts, gold, frankincense, and myrrh and that's why I guess they limit the number of carriers to three.  The Wise men  visited the Christ Child not in a stable but in a house when He was nearly two years old (Matt. 2:11).  I imagine it would get pretty crowded in that stable with the shepherds, wise men, angels, and animals in one small space.  But isn't that what most Nativity scenes show us?
  • We sing Hark the Herald, Angels Sing....but does the bible say that they were singing? When they appeared before the shepherds they spoke, they praised (which we know could mean in a way other than in song) glory shone all around them (Luke 2: 8-14). In fact there's only three places in scripture were angels are singing --Job 38:7, Isaiah 14:12, and Rev. 5:8-10.   Here's a side note though...did you know that God sings???  Read Zephaniah 3:17.
  • We celebrate Christmas, Christ's birthday during the winter....December 25, but we don't actually know the season Christ was born.  Shepherds certainly wouldn't have been tending their flocks in the middle of winter! Like many Christian observances, Christmas has it roots in paganism. It comes from the the Roman holiday Saturnalia, the birthday of  the unconquered sun.  It was observed with feasting, parades, special music, gift giving and green trees and candles and lasted for seven days.(sounds like now doesn't it?)  In 336 Emperor Constantine christianized the celebration and declared Christ's birthday an official Roman holiday.  We've been celebrating on December 25th every since.
  • Christmas is typically known as a time of extreme emotional stress, strain, and greater acts of crime and violence.  Some would describe it as a season of bedlam, meaning noise and confusion akin to that symbolized in an insane asylum.  How ironic that this word has the same etymological root as Bethlehem, the place of Christ's birth. This certainly describes the scene in the shopping mall doesn't it? Still, it's a comfort to know that the Hebrew word for Bethlehem, is House of Bread.  Jesus the Bread of Life was born in the House of Bread!
  • Christ's birth split time in half!  Yes His birth was so significant that all the world chronicles time periods according to it.  B.C. (Before Christ) and A.D. (anno domini, in the year of our Lord.  However, I must say that in recent years the world is trying very, very hard to erase that from the minds of latter generations.  More and more you see modern history books referring to B.C.E. (Before common era) and C.E. (common era) giving recognition to historians that may not be Christians!
So there you have it, five things not commonly known about this time of year!  Do me a favor, pull this up and read it while you're stuck in those long check-out lines or waiting for that ham to come out of the oven.  Maybe take a break  and steal away Christmas day for a moment of quiet from the bedlam of noisy children playing with toys or the incessant chatter from relatives you wish would go home after Christmas dinner!  Hey, there's always a good time to learn more about our Savior.  

Merry Christmas, I hope I gave you something to think about!


Sunday, December 14, 2014


D uring my tenure as a marketing assistant with a large pharmaceutical company I had the opportunity to learn a lot about psychological diseases and their symptoms.  One in particular caught my interest.  It was a condition called Seasonal Affective Disorder.  You may know it as The Winter Blues or as researchers dub it... S. A. D.

Generally, it is treated with anti-depression meds, life style changes and sunlight therapy.  Although it can occur almost any time it is more prevalent during the dark, cold, and activity prohibitive winter months. People who suffer from S. A. D really are sad and depressed, so I guess that explains some of the moods we're seeing lately!  But I'm beginning to see a bit of it among a particular group of individuals and in one particular place....The Church!

Here are the symptoms: Lack of focus; sleepiness; irritability; don't care about spiritual things, i.e., bible study, prayer, morning devotions.  If not in the acute stage one can make it out to church, but barely.  Once you sit down the hearing becomes dull.  You're too tired to stand for praise; no clapping or hallelujahs during worship and you can't remember a thing the pastor said even between the dozing!

I don't think it would be much of a stretch to call this S.A.D too...Spiritual Apathy Disorder!  With all the hustle and bustle this time of year it's just too doggone hard to get excited about Jesus!  Too many parties to attend, too much shopping and of course the extra weight we gained from eating all that free food has more than our butts dragging!

No worries my friends.  If you take heed this can be only a temporary condition.  All you've got to do is apply some SON THERAPY to your day. I'm talking about a big dose of JESUS!  Similar to the medical one, exposure to the Light works wonders!  In John 8:12 we find that Jesus is the Light of the World.  Like natural sun light, a dose of Jesus releases spiritual serotonin in your body which means He's an automatic mood lifter.  You just want to smile more!  Gone is moodiness and depression.  Just a few minutes talking to Him in prayer each day makes all the difference!  Wake up early and join us on the prayer line!**

Having problems getting those skinny jeans on with all the cakes and cookies consumed since Thanksgiving?  How about fasting some of those heavy meals and feasting on God's Word the Bible!  John 6:35 says that Jesus is the Bread of Life.  I know you think you could live on bread alone but from one carbohydrate junkie to another...believe me you can't! Extra pounds make you sluggish and sleepy in church. Your clothes become too tight and you get subconscious, so you plant your self on the pew and don't get up until it's time to go home and take them off! Now THAT'S when the church really says AMEN!!

The Enemy works extra hard to keep Christians from focusing on God at church but he takes a vacation during the holidays because we distract ourselves!  Yes, there's lots of things to do and it seems that everyone and everything demands your attention.  Even the most organized soul finds it hard to keep wonder we're irritable and stressed out.

 So why not pick up the bible, turn to John 10:10-11.  Jesus tells us that He is the Good Shepherd.  Sheep don't go to psychiatrists!  They don't worry or stress out over Christmas lists and dinner preparations.  They just follow the Shepherd's voice and they know that Green pastures are straight ahead.   Jesus came to give us a life of Peace...we've just got to stop long enough to enjoy it!

Listen  up people! If the Lord tarries we have two more Sundays before Christmas.  Send up some deliberate praise the next time you meet with the saints...Don't let Winter blues steal your joy...TELL THE ENEMY YOU'RE NOW IN THERAPY...SON LIGHT THERAPY AND YOU'RE GOING TO PRAISE JESUS UNTIL THE NEW YEAR COMES IN!

Until Next Time..

**E.M.B.C. Prayer Line is in session Mon-Fri. 6:30AM-6:45AM - 712-432-1212, Meeting ID: 181-134-529#  (Don't forget to mute your phone until you place your request)

Sunday, December 7, 2014

SPEAKING OF GIFTS...Here's some FREE Stuff?

Encourage One Another - I Thess. 5:11 
If you're like me every year it's the same old thing.  What do I get for those special people in my life?

I tell you I'm just about over it all.  Not the giving part. I love to give, but trying to pick that perfect present is nearly impossible.  After all, I'm no mind reader and most of the people that I do give a gift to, already have everything they need.  Isn't that a blessing?

A few years back my husband and I declared a moratorium on Christmas gifts from our children and grandchildren. In fact, the only ones who receive Christmas gifts in the family are those under the age of 12 years.   Teens would rather have money and any more I'd rather give it.  Sure beats getting my feelings hurt after finding out they never wore that sweater or other article of clothing I thought was so cute and fashionable!

These days instead of risking my life and limbs fighting traffic and mall rage.  I'm keeping my list very, very short for material things and adding to it for spiritual things!  Taking a tip from the talk shows, I'm giving everyone in my audience of family, friends, and acquaintances MY FAVORITE  THINGS!  And guess what...they're all free:

  • Friendship - There are approximately 7 billion people in the world.  I don't know how many are lonely but probably more than you think. True friendship is a powerful gift to give and you don't have to go far.  Your grouchy neighbor, the cleaning woman who looks sad all the time; or the rude cashier are prime candidates.  A smile, a handshake of appreciation, or a simple Merry Christmas will do.  Maybe an invite to church. All can become gifts of friendship.  Just the fact that you noticed them could make their day! (Prov. 17:17; Prov. 18:24; Matt. 25:40)
  • Reconnecting - All of us have relationships that we've let go fallow (uncultivated).  Nobody got mad, no misunderstanding,  you just for some reason lost touch with one another. Christmas is a good time to go through your contact list, call, text,  or email  just to say hello; I miss you; let's get together soon.  Hearing from an old friend can be more precious than the most expensive gift. (Ephes 4:32a; Gal. 6:10)
  • Encouragement  - Suicides increase this time of year; folks go in debt trying to outdo each other with elaborate parties and decor; grief seems especially heavy and guilt and depression because you can't fulfill the wish list of loved ones sucks all the joy out of life.   How about spending a little time telling your family or friends how much they mean to you.  Instead of a Christmas card (that's expected).  Surprise someone with a note of thanks for something they've done for you that they've long forgotten.  (Heb. 10:24-25;  2 Cor 13:11) 
  • Eternal Life - Sadly, recent events are proving that people desperately need Jesus!  You of course can't save anyone...we know that.  But you can give lost souls an opportunity to accept Christ for themselves.  Hearts are especially open during the Christmas season when generosity tends to be at its peak.  Folks are just in a giving mood.  Instead of throwing a few coins in the red bucket of bell ringers everywhere, why not spend a few hours visiting homeless shelters, nursing homes, or serving on food lines.  As you give of your time you'll hear many thank you's.   Turn those  into an opportunity to explain why you're there--because of the love of Christ who also loves them.  Why not make the real meaning of Christmas a topic of conversation everywhere you go. (John 3:16; (Rom. 5:8;   John 3:36; John 1:12) 

Okay, this is the end of my Christmas list.  Check back next week for some help with S.A.D. and I don't mean (Seasonal Affective Disorders)!!

Sunday, November 30, 2014


"...Not Easily Broken." (Ecc. 4:9-12)
Sisters keep approaching me about schisms they are seeing in the church among women.  They are really concerned about the lack of unity and quite frankly, genuine sister love they feel is missing among the saints.

Tossed in the mix are suggestions for another women's retreat, classes addressing female relationships or most frequently, a no-holds barred boot camp just for women! I can understand why.  They would love to experience the camaraderie (the sense of trust, loyalty, and goodwill) they've noticed in the men of our church after theirs.  I have to be honest....I've been resistant! 

Not because I don't feel it too or don't desire to see this type of spiritual growth but because I'm not yet convinced that we (women as a whole) are truly serious about making the change that I know will be needed to accomplish this: 

Complete honesty about our current struggles. Ceasing petty competition between ministries in order to curry favor with the pastor.  Continuing to speak and engage warmly with a sister even  when you disagree on a matter. Stopping the gossip and down talking of a sister behind her back and refusing to engage in spiritual bullying (lying, saying mean things about others on social media) and ostracizing a sister from social events by conveniently forgetting to invite them! 

All of the above violate in my eyes the Christian Girlfriend Code.  Just like popular culture, these are unwritten but known  codes of conduct adhered to by genuine sister-friends. They are put in place to preserve unity, to show support and love and to create a bond that cannot be broken...not even by a man!  To give you some examples, I've christianized six codes that I found online:

1.  Never cancel important girlfriend plans for a man (this has more to do with single life, but I see this applicable to Christian life as well.  How many times have you committed to support a church ministry function where a spiritual sister is expecting and counting on your attendance and a "hot date" or something more appealing to your fleshly desires conflict? How did you choose?

2. Confidential conversations between you and your girls remain so even to your man. This is a given, but probably one of the reasons good friendships are destroyed.  Women have a hard enough time with trust.  This is one reason.  Also, men...not even some husbands can truly understand the need for Sister friend relationships.  If you've got one they don't care for, telling him their business sure doesn't help.

3. Your girlfriend's "Ex" can't be your "Next".  Do I even have to comment on this one.  I've actually sat in a congregation with a man with two ex-wives. They handled it well but it sure made me uncomfortable!

4. If you come together, leave together. This too, happens in the church.  You go out of your way to pick up a girlfriend for bible study, meeting, concert and she hooks up with another friend, disses you and makes plan with them to go somewhere afterwards leaving you to drive home alone.

5. Siding with or speaking ill of a girlfriend's spouse or boyfriend is taboo.  Whenever you're tempted to criticize your friend's significant other opt to pray for the situation.  Even if she's inviting you to put your two cents in.

6. Be the type of friend that you want. This is actually straight from the Word of God.  Some call it the Golden Rule, Matthew 7:12 but it is backed up by all of the scriptural love principles. 

Ecclesiastes 4:9-12 expresses my sentiments about sister to sister relationships.  We are so much better together than we are apart. "Two are better than one because they have a good reward for their labor. For if one falls, one will lift up his companion.  But woe to him who is alone  when he falls for he has no one to help him up.  Again, if two lie down together will keep warm; but  how can one be warm alone?  Though one may be overpowered by another, two can withstand him.  And a threefold cord is not quickly broken."

 We do need a change but let's first see if we can get past the damage that the violations of the above girl friend codes have done.  

Until Next Time...

Sunday, November 23, 2014

A Cry From My Younger Self

Lord, how did I get here?
The wisdom, I'm learning in growing older is that I have very little room to criticize and pooh pooh the decisions some younger women are making. Where once I was one of those who hesitated to publicly express my dismay over the stupidity of my young kinswomen who although beautiful and educated still succumbed to what Iyanla Vanzant calls, the Person, the Penis or the Promise; in private I readily castigated my scorn!  I repented however, after taking a look at my younger self.  I did some stupid stuff myself. I guess I just had to keep on living, like the elders used to say.

That's why I was moved with compassion when I checked in on a young woman who I've unofficially taken under my spiritual wing!  I hadn't heard from her in a while but have always been grateful to her for she and others were the inspiration behind me writing this blog!  Always seeking fresh insight into the world of young Christian singles, I asked if she had any topics she wanted me to share. She responded that she'd like to see one on: Godly women dating worldly men!

Hummmm, this might take awhile I thought. But maybe some of you (my readers) might weigh in on the subject for some objectivity.  Use the comment section at the end of this blog!  Until I hear from you though let me just share these theories:


1. They like a man who can take care of himself and in retrospect this makes them feel more secure.  Women want to feel safe and protected.  We want to know that if something or someone threatens our homes or well-being our man will be able to handle it!  We assume that a worldly man has the inside track on this and will rise to the occasion if needed.  Confidence in a man is very attractive and security is a very important emotional need for a woman. From the Garden man was made to be woman's protector so we seek out those types of men. (Gen. 2:23-24; Ephes. 5:28)  

2.  Godly women love a missionary project! We really believe we can make a flawed man better just by loving him! We are by nature, nurturers.We care, tend, and try to bring out the best in those we love. We see good qualities in a man we're interested in and believe that God will empower us to to save his soul....not for God's glory but for our own selfish needs. Why would God go through all that trouble and put you through the mess when He tells you to wait until He sends your Boaz to you? ( 2 Cor. 6:14) 

3. We love a man with a little edge...a sense of adventure.  We find worldly men more stimulating than a man who seems stuck in a rut.  Some godly women are also risk takers. They will often choose men who are their spiritual opposite just to provide some excitement in their relationship. But one must remember that when the "thrill is gone"...the consequences remain and the flesh is very hard to satisfy.  Like the elusive might find yourself chasing that same sense of adventure and never quite reaching it. 

4.  Godly women can get comfortable with what is familiar.  This is especially so for women who are new in their faith.  They have not yet learned about or accepted their own God-worth and have lowered their standards for a man for so long that they keep returning to the same old, stagnant well of love, to quench their thirst. It is  important to take time to really invest in yourself spiritually before putting yourself out there in a relationship.  Worldly men love godly women. You are a conquest for them. If he can turn you away from your biblical principles he has won a priceless trophy...but you are left with the Booby prize!

You may question:  If dating worldly men is so bad, why does God  keep putting them in my path?  The answer is easy.  God never tempts us but He often tests us.  He is testing your faith in Him to supply your every emotional need. Your patience to endure and Your wisdom to discern what is good in order to gain what is best. You have to pick through a lot of bad apples some time before you find that perfect one. (James 1:2-4) 

Hang in there Sisters!  If you've flunked God's test....brush yourself off and try again...He will always give you a DO OVER!

Until Next Time,

Monday, November 17, 2014


"In my integrity you uphold me and
 set me in  your presence forever."
(Ps. 41:12)
Sexual integrity, the topic of my past two posts is not just for the young.  I find it necessary to clarify that, since there may be some  seasoned saints reading who feel they can sit in judgement.

If you are of a certain age, you might recall that sociologists call the "60s" a pivotal point in the Sexual Revolution of the twentieth century.  It was the time that gave birth to Hippies, Rock and
 Roll, wide use of Drugs,  Free Love, and of course, The Birth Control Pill!

Younger folks may not realize it but there's another sexual revolution taking place and wouldn't you know it, it's finding a niche in the sixties too.  No, not the 1960s but among men and women in their sixties and even older.  Millennials and younger tend to look at their parents and grand parents and can't imagine that this is an issue.  Baby, you'd be surprised whose kicking sheets these days!

One 2012 survey reports that 80% of 50-90 year olds are sexually active.  There are over a dozen brands of Viagara-like pills on the market.  Cougars (older women) are on the hunt for younger and more virile men who can keep up with them sexually.  And of course its no surprise that 
 STDs (sexually transmitted diseases) are on the rise in the 50+ age group.   So, yes we need to have a sexual integrity talk with seniors.   Here's why:

Many seniors are lonely, even going online (Our Time website is an example) trying to find love, the second time around.  Some are still in reasonably good health, have buried their mates and seek companionship because they fear growing older alone! Let me warn you folks who are considering re-marriage.  Blood tests may not be required any more but you might need to know your soon-to-be spouses past sexual history!

 Like younger people, they too can find themselves in Hook-up situations. Some couples married for years and years are in counseling right now because one or the other partner experienced a Mid-life crisis, separated for awhile and had an affair or used it as a time of sexual experimentation (sex clubs, prostitutes even going on the down-low).

Integrity, sexual or not has to do with your character.  It is the person you really are deep in your heart and it has no age limitations.  A lustful unregenerate heart must be transformed just like any other.  I'd like to end this series with some words of wisdom from a Christian counselor I listen to frequently on the radio, June Hunt, Hope for the Heart. She loves acrostics too!  Add these to the scriptures I've discussed in earlier posts:

I-nvite others into your struggles.  A wise mentor or friend (Ecc. 4:9-10)
N-ever put yourself or others in tempting situations.  Know your triggers (Prov. 6:27)
T-rust God to meet your needs for love (Ps. 84:11)
E-njoy others instead of using them (Rom. 12:9-10)
G-ive yourself only to sex in marriage (Heb. 13:4)
R-efuse to justify bad behavior. Commit to purity (Matt. 26:41)
I-solate yourself from people who tempt you. (I Cor. 15:33)
T-ransform your mind through the Word (Ps. 119:11)
Y-ield to Christ who lives in You not your own ability (Gal. 2:20)

 TRI-Weekly (Three times a week)
 TRY weekly (At least one time a week)   OR
 TRY weakly (Do the best you can)

Sex within marriage is an expression of God in His Unity and One-ness of the Spirit.
Enjoy it as long as you can, but above all KEEP IT SACRED...It is indeed a Holy Trust!!


Sunday, November 9, 2014

GROWN FOLKS BUSINESS, Part Two, Our Sexual Environments

                  SAM in my Pants Commercial
Last week I challenged readers to put God's gift of sexual intimacy in its proper place, the marriage bed of  committed, and loving couples.  Our culture has exploited human sexuality for its own selfish gains and in the meantime contributed to the continuing demoralization of our society.  

Sex has been used to sell everything from shampoo to cadillacs and each year advertisers push us closer and closer to the edge of total moral depravity.  There appears to be nothing off limits.  An example is the Poise feminine products commercial above.  It is not only distasteful but degrading in the way that it takes a perfectly normal function of the female body and with provocative innuendos turns it into a sexual conversation between two women.

As Christians we find ourselves in somewhat of a dilemma, in that we are in the world, but not of it (John 17:6). How you may ask can we stay holy in such an unholy environment?  How do we protect our children from sexual predators (male and female) who masquerade as teachers, mentors, and ministry workers?

 I was a bit surprised when 34 year old Mary Kay Latourneau was convicted of having sex with her 12 year old student back in 1997.  She went to jail twice had a baby by him and they later married.  But since then there have been at least a dozen similar cases. All females preying sexually on teen boys!

I was less surprised with the popularity of the book, Fifty Shades of Gray. A novel that graphically describes sexual scenes that include perverse activities such as the use of whips and other forms of sexual domination.  I guess a movie is in the making now and the only protests I've heard so far are from women who are disappointed that full frontal nudity of men will not be included! What do you want to bet that it will be a movie blockbuster!!

Ladies, our sexual integrity is at stake! Just as sexual language influences our character; sexual environments can shape our behavior!  THAT IS, IF YOU ALLOW NEGATIVE ENVIRONMENTS TO DOMINATE YOUR THINKING!

Romans 12:2 admonishes Christians not to be conformed (shaped) by this world but have our minds transformed and renewed.  This action precedes what I believe is our safety net against prevailing sexual language and dangerous sexual behavior. God's word it says will prove without a shadow of doubt, what is His will! And what is that will?  Read the following:    

"For this is the will of God, your sanctification: that you should abstain from sexual immorality" (I Thessalonians 4:3)   

Yes, it's that easy.  Abstain means to hold ones self away from.  To maintain your sexual character.  Keeping it real... it means that you do an ongoing  sexual self-check! 


--MOVIES - Married or unmarried, stay away from sexually explicit movies (ex:  Magic Mike), music videos, etc.  They excite the emotions and make you vulnerable to sexual sin!  
For some women, sex is just like a drug!  This is especially so, if you have been sexually active in the past.  Loneliness creeps in and you long for social intimacy, which can be quite harmless...but some how if not careful can turn into sexual intimacy!  Find other ways to fulfill these needs for companionship.  Keep yourself busy, don't isolate yourself, participate in group activities, physically exercise routinely to help expend some of that energy.

Be careful of sexual fantasies!  Pornography for females  is called erotica. Although God has given all of us imagination, the Enemy will often oppress us with dreams and thoughts of a sexual nature. Many of the popular shows we watch are nothing more than soft porn. They fall short of showing the complete sex act!  Bring every thought captive to the will of God.  

--OLD ASSOCIATIONS.  Those you hung out with before you were saved should not be your companions today.  (I Corinthians 5:9-11).  You're sanctified now, (separated) from old habits.  You may think you're strong enough to handle the club scene, and party atmosphere but why take the chance. The flesh has a long memory!

I can't tell you how dangerous it is to make connection with virtual strangers.  All types of people have computers and they're looking for women who have no life!  Weak willed and lonely. They will lure you with what you want to hear and then trap you in order to use you.

Fill your time and your mind with God's Word!  It will help you keep your priorities straight (Matthew 6:33).   Ask God for the filling of the Holy Spirit daily.  He has the power to give you supernatural self-control and enables your ability to be content without fulfilling sexual urges.

REMEMBER: Before we can encourage our young people to stand against the pervasiveness of unbiblical sex, we've got to model it ourselves.  We cannot do so if we talk one game and live another!

Until Next Time!

Sunday, November 2, 2014

GROWN FOLKS BUSINESS: Part One - Our Sexual Language

Call me Tardy to the Party, but I just caught the re-run of Iyanla Fix My Life episode about the man with 35 children by 17 women! I binged watched the whole thing...including the two follow-up shows in one night.  The latter shows exposed five more brothers who all together had fathered 87 children with 50 women. The result: a legacy of pain and shame for all and 
the children becoming the real victims!

I can't tell you the emotional roller coaster this put me on.  From shock and disbelief to  extreme sadness.  With all the talk about sexual freedom and making contraception readily available, even in our schools it seems that some men and women are no smarter or responsible sexually than in my day!

 Back in the Stone Age when I was young, talking about sex was grown folks business!  Sure, girls got pregnant before marriage but rarely more than once without the baby's father marrying them.  We knew that Sister So and So's last baby looked nothing like Bro. So and So.  Yet nobody said a word, at least not out loud, thinking what it might do to the child!  There was a bit of integrity it seems even among sinners.  Not any more!

Sex is no longer grown folks business.  I wish it was.  I wish we could wait to talk to our daughters about it.  But  the world has forced our hands.

 Sexting, child pornography, date rape and violence is rising.  Erectile Dysfunction and sexual enhancement lubricant ads air throughout the day.  Music videos, movies, cartoons, reality and talk shows are sexually explicit.  Where do you draw the line?  Perhaps with the language we so freely use!

Life and death is in the power of the tongue, those who love it will eat its fruit  (Prov. 18:21)

Sex within marriage is a precious and delicate gift of God (Gen. 1:26).  Our bodies are sacred temples ( I Cor. 6:19-20) reserved for our God-appointed spouse.  We are cheapening both by reducing them to mere playthings for others or pleasure palaces for degenerate minds.

Marva Dawn, female theologian tells us that Language Influences One's Sexual Character.  Our character encompasses our view of Self, our Environment, and ultimately our Behavior  Take this short quiz.  Do you know the meaning of these words or phrases?

--Booty Call                  --Vejayjay
--Hook Up                    --Back dooring
--B.O.B.                        --Chicken Head
--Down Low                 --Baby Mama
--Get Ya Freak On      --Giving Up the Gold

I bet your young daughters do! (These are pretty mild,  some online, I just couldn't put out here!...disgusting).  When we use or allow others to use off color sexual language in our presence, even as a joke, we are teaching them that women and their bodies have no value. 

 This pejorative language lessens the humanity of the person referred to.  Is it any surprise then that if a girl is referred to over and over as a Bitch, Ho, and Tramp that she eventually becomes one?  That if we glamorize scantily dressed females lap-dancing rappers in music videos that women see their sexuality as a means to fame and prosperity. 

The fruit we are eating referenced in Proverbs 18:21 may well be those fifty broken women who allowed the men on Iyanla's show to use them!  Perhaps somewhere in their emotionally confused minds they were okay with using their body as sexual bargaining chips for the attention and love they so desperately seek!  

It's time for us to take Sex out of the street, off the internet and into the church, so our youth can get the truth about their sexuality. Grown Folks Business can bring Grown Folks Problems, so yes, sex outside of marriage is FORNICATION,  Living together unwed is a sin not mere COHABITATION.  Homosexuality is an ABOMINATION before God not a LIFESTYLE. 

 Let's start putting power in our tongues and not Cheap Speech that's deluding our children all the way to hell!  That's Biblical Sexual Language!

Next Week:   Our Sexual Environment

Monday, October 20, 2014


Well it's that time again.  The trees are decked out in their finest fall foliage; Halloween decorations crowd store aisles and mailboxes are filling up with Christmas magazines and charity appeals.  What happened to Thanksgiving?  Did it get lost in the commercialism fray?  Did the rest of the world forget?

I didn't and I'm starting my Thanksgiving praises early
because this is also the time that my home church celebrates Family and Friends.   All year we've been studying God's principles for a Biblical family through skillful living.  This encompasses godly male leadership; wise and nurturing females; influential singles, and children spiritually equipped to survive in this sin-drenched world!  

We had a Marriage Bootcamp in February.  A Boys and Girls Bootcamp in June.  A Kingdom Woman Rally in August and now men of all ages are starting their second week of Small Change, Big Impact  Men's Bootcamp.  It's their ninth year and we're praising God for those who are truly allowing God to transform them from the inside out!

The church parking lot is full every morning!  The sanctuary still simmering on Sunday after week long powerful preaching and teaching.  And no doubt your man will have that Bootcamp Swagger for at least a month after graduation.  But what then? What  if you're not yet seeing any long-lasting change? 

This blog is for the wives, mothers, siblings, and significant others who are still waiting. Here's a few things we can do to keep that spiritual fire going!
Just think of the acrostic B.O.O.T.C.A.M.P. 

B - Believe in your loved one's potential (Phil. 1:6; I Tim. 3:4) There's a hero in there somewhere. 
       We've just got to help bring it out.  Every man wants the respect and admiration of his family.
       They often stumble over the appropriate way to get it, but deep down they crave it, so be his 
       biggest cheerleader.  Show him that you've got his back no matter what!

O - Overcome disappointments with faith not resentment (2 Tim. 2:24-26; Heb. 12:12-15)
       Get real! Change doesn't always come overnight--not saying it can't but God's timing is always
       best.  Have a little patience. How long did it take you to get things figured out? Hasn't God been
      long suffering with you?

O - Obey Scripture no matter what, so respond appropriately (Ps. 119:33-36; 66; 105)
     At the end of the day, no matter what you do or how hard you pray, if you're not doing it according    
     to scripture, you're wasting your time.  God must get the glory!

T- Thank God (I Thess 5:18). Thank God he went to Bootcamp so many don't! Thank the one who   
      encouraged him.  Thank God that he's hearing the Word and is in the fellowship of godly men.
     Thank God for what you don't see yet but the promise that it's coming. Always give thanks!

C- Carve out time daily to encourage him, even when bootcamp is over (Heb. 3:12-13; 2 Tim 1:6)
       Everyone needs encouragement when they're down, doubtful, or dismayed. Write a note, say 
      something positive. Simply say, I'm proud of you.  It will go a long, long way!

A- Hold him accountable without nagging ( Prov. 27:15-16; Rom. 14:10-12).  Save your breathe!
     Nagging gets you no where and only cuts off communication.  Stubborn men dig in 
    deeper when nagged!  Here are some of the principles our men go over at bootcamp: 'Man up and
    bow down'; Submit to God; Resist the Devil; Face it and God will Fix it; Draw closer to God.
    Signs are  posted all over the sanctuary...shock them by letting your man know you're paying   

M -Model the behavior you want to see (I Peter  1:15-16;  I Peter 3:1; Gal. 5:22) Your loved one 
       won't always hear what you say or even acknowledge what you do in a positive way, but don't
       give up.  Don't let the Enemy use "you" as an excuse not to do what God has told him to do. 

P-  Praise and Pray without ceasing (I Thess. 5:17, Matt. 7:7) Nothing gets accomplished in God's 
      people or God's kingdom without fervent prayer so never stop.   Keep your eyes on Jesus and
     never give up. 

Take a moment to look at the picture above.  See the words engraved on the rocks?  Focus, Renewal, Forgiveness, Love, Hope, Faith, and Balance.  That's what it's going to take to Save our Families, our marriages, and our children against a common Enemy.  Don't be guilty of Bootcamp Relapse.  Go back and re-read the scriptures.  Practice them with your spouse, children and others.  TOGETHER WE REALLY CAN GET THROUGH THIS!!

Until Next Time!

Sunday, October 12, 2014


I spent the day with my only grandson this past week.  He's a pretty cool eleven year old if I have to say so myself.  He's a thinker  by nature and full of questions.  But like many of our children I find that he's getting exposed early to things that I didn't even care about when I was his age. Already we've had deep conversations about Area 57 and the possibility of life on other planets, Hawking's Black Hole theory and Quantum physics.  If you haven't guessed yet...he's into science!

Since quite a few scientists are also atheists, I've been keeping my eyes and ears open to make sure that he's getting a good diet of bible truth as well.  While he's busy quizzing me on science, I'm dropping in the Word of God at every opportunity! That's why I thought he might enjoy a  movie as one of our outings. I wanted to get his take on one just hitting the theater this month, Left Behind.  We both found it interesting and entertaining but for a bible-based movie it had very little bible in it!  (The first one starring Kirk Cameron was much better).

I know you've noticed the trend..Hollywood has discovered that Christians love movies about their faith!  Yep!  Now there's  something for both the sinner and the saint and we're making them billion of dollars at the box office.  Already there's one coming out about Moses, based on the Book of Exodus. By spring we'll have another called, Wayward, a modern day Prodigal son.

I'm not hating on the movie industry. It is good to see something beside sex and violence and deviant behavior.  It is entertaining for sure.  But could they at least try to make it look like the bible!  Did you see the movie, Noah?  I must admit, I didn't.  But even my grandson said it was confusing!  
However there are some true faith-based offerings:  God's Not Dead!; Courageous, Soul Surfer, and Fireproof are examples.  But I left Heaven is For Real, thinking...Are YOU For Real???  

Okay, let me see your many of you still believe that Tyler Perry's movies are faith-based and teach Christian values???  So glad I can't FaceTime all of you!  Yet he built his now successful career with the monetary support of Christian audiences!

 Do you believe that Mary Magdalene was a prostitute as shown in The Passion of Christ and perhaps two-thirds of other movies? Everyday in the news we are inundated with pictures of people  in the Middle East.  Ethnic Jews, Syrians, Jordanians, all people of color.  Yet in most biblical movies the disciples  and others are fair-skinned with European features, especially Jesus.  

This is not racist diatribe.  Just proof that Christians ought to be able to discern fact from fiction (2 Timothy: 2:15; John 8:32).  Know what is a tool for evangelism (Romans 10:17) and what is just pure entertainment.  Even the latter must be done with care for it is easy to be swayed by another gospel (Gal. 1:6-10) or become spiritually defiled with over indulgence (Ps. 101:3a)

The  sad news is that many Christians are Bible illiterates and can't tell the difference! When witnessing we have to spend a great deal of time just getting folks to unlearn what they've seen! 

 Perhaps the next time we go to the movies before heading for the popcorn we should pause, pray and then take a moment to scan our Bibles first!!

Sunday, October 5, 2014


Remember as a chid how you thought nothing of taking a treasured toy or some little cherished item with a boo boo to an adult saying,  Fix it please!  That's how I've been feeling lately, only there's no one  in this world that can actually do that!

Rarely, a day goes by that I don't hear the word broken used to describe some malfunctioning, defective or insufficient practice that comes to light during a crisis.  Our economy teeters on the brink of default every few months or so.  Terrorists easily find breaches in Homeland security.  Billions of dollars are spent each year to equip and train our law enforcement officers yet crime and violence continues to escalate!  Folks let's admit it...our world is broken!

While some take this admission as an opportunity to point fingers, when the smoke clears we can only point to one culprit--the god of this age, Satan! (2 Corinthian 4:3-4)  Don't get me wrong, I know this is October, the month when Ole Slew foot, gets enough publicity.  I'm not even overlooking man's personal responsibility by using, the Devil made me do it, excuse.  I'm just telling you whose behind all these events.

Sorry, Republicans, this is not all President Obama and the Democrats fault.  Sorry, Feminists, there is a war against women, but the Republicans aren't waging it and Hilary Clinton can't fix it.  I'm sorry too Christians.. that although prayer has been taken out of school, it shouldn't have been taken out of your home.  You can't really blame Madelyn O'Hare for the rising cost of health care or the immigration problem can you?

As is my practice, when I'm stumped for answers to questions of a global nature like the failing world systems, I go to the God's Word.  I know that part of the remedy for healing broken things is prayer.  So I revisited the Lord's Prayer in John 17.  No, I'm not confused.  I'm not talking about the Model Prayer, that begins, Our Father which art in heaven.... (Matt. 6:9-13).  I'm talking about Christ's prayer in the Garden of Gethsemane.

It may surprise you that Jesus' concern at the time was not for this world.  In fact He specifically says in John 17:9, I pray for them (Christ followers).  I'm not praying for the God-rejecting world But for those you gave me, For they are yours by right. (Message Bible).  He goes on to say in verse 15: I do not ask you to take them out of this world but that you keep them from the Evil one. 

In another passage He warns us through the apostle John,  Love not the world neither the things in the world.  If anyone loves the world, the  love of the Father is not in him. (I John 2:15). So does this mean we shouldn't care about what's happening in the world?  Of course not!  We are still commanded to be Salt and Light (Matt. 5:13-17).  We should still vote and serve in the armed forces when called upon and pay our taxes (Romans 13:1-7).

What we should not do is put our hope for a better world in mankind! We must not believe that
somehow morality will be restored through a miraculous change of mind, or that violence will be quelled through the imprisonment of more offenders or stricter gun laws.

Here is the reality!  Satan is alive and well and these are the last days spoken of in 2 Timothy 4: 1-5,  The Days of Broken Things.  We've been in them since Christ's resurrection.  Let us not be blinded that things are going to get better they're not! But let's get busy preparing for the time when Abba Father, Our Lord comes back, destroys Satan and fixes all that is broken.  Then, there will be a new and righteous world order! (Romans 8:15; Revelation 21)

Determine to  live each day until this glorious time comes with the strength and grace He provides.  Do not fear the unknown for Christ is praying for you!  Do not strive in fruitless pursuits, endless debates and marches! And above all do not  lose hope!

"Broken Things can become Blessed Things for our good, But God Must do the Mending!"

Sunday, September 28, 2014

PRAYING WITH MY PEN! Journaling Your Way to Spiritual Growth

About eight years ago I came across a poem written and submitted by my brother to a hometown church's 136th anniversary celebration program committee.  It accompanied our family's well wishes as several members received early spiritual training there.  It was simply entitled, Praying With My Pen. **  Here are a couple stanzas:

Some go to God on bend'ed knee;
     Others might sit or stand;
But when I have an urgent prayer,
     I take my pen in hand.

Some begin with words of thanksgiving
   Or confession of a particular sin;
     But I don't fuss over sequence
 When I'm praying with my pen. 
                           -Alfred L. Harris, Sr.

This describes so vividly the sentiments of my own heart, for I too pray with my pen using the often neglected spiritual discipline of journal writing.  

I can't tell you how many times I've heard sincere but misguided Christians say, I just don't know how to pray.  As if  there is some profound mystery to it all.  It's not!  Praying is simply talking to God and if you can talk you can pray!  Let me re-phrase that...even if you can't talk you can pray!  You can think a prayer!  You can sing a prayer!  You can even moan a prayer  because we have a Helper! (Romans 8:26)

For all you bible snobs out there, there's no particular verse I can point you to that commands you to journal.  I don't think it's mentioned anywhere in the bible!  It's just one of the wonderful gifts of communication God gives that allows us the freedom to share our heart concerns and requests with Him.  It takes no training.  It has no rules.  It can be done as often or infrequent as you like.  You can write as  much or as little as you want and the cost is virtually free.

Let me share with you from my own twenty plus years of experience, some of its value:

1.  Journaling has health benefits for your entire being (body, soul, and spirit).  It is not only a  wonderful stress reliever (instead of punching out that annoying co-worker, tell it to the Lord in your journal); but it also lessens or helps you manage emotional depression.

 Anger raises the blood pressure, releases harmful toxins into the body and contributes to all kinds of illnesses.  Besides that  it saddens the Lord and stifles our spiritual growth (Ephes. 4:26-30; I Thess. 5:19; Gal. 5:19-22).

 Recording life events and how you handled them spiritually is a great way to stay accountable and measure your progress in sanctification (becoming more like Christ).

2.  Journaling helps you see where and how God is working in your life.  From time to time when my faith gets weak or I think God has left me stranded in my trials, I go back and read old journal entries.  I re-read my prayer requests (what I asked for and the date God answered!) I revisit, briefly the highs and lows of the past months, sometimes years and I see clearly in my past what I'm unable to see in the present...God is constantly working in my behalf!

3. Journaling helps you leave a spiritual legacy for loved ones when you're gone.  (Deut. 6:4-7; 2 Timothy 1:5)  There are some things my children and grandchildren will never know about me and my life until they read my journal!  In fact, I write with that very intent.

 As I share my faith walk with God and the reality of my struggles, all pretense has been wiped away.  They will read of my prayers for them, the joy they have brought me and even the pain endured, but they will not miss  my unconditional love for them and that it was God who got me through it all.  

Here's how to start:

  •  If you're old school like me,  I suggest a plain loose leaf notebook with wide lines so as not to restrict your writing.  Bookstore journals and bible devotional journals generally have a different purpose altogether--to help you meditate on specific passages of scripture.   For my high tech readers, I'm sure there's a journal app or someplace to record notes on your IPad,  Galaxy, Smart Phone, etc. 
  • Find a good pen (one that fits your hand comfortably--not too heavy or cumbersome) and used specifically for this purpose.  Keep it nearby to prevent procrastination which will surely happen until you become disciplined.
  • Journal about anything you like: a thought from the pastor's sermon,  a word of encouragement you received from your devotional and scripture reading.  Questions you have about the bible, prayer requests and answers, praises, your dreams, goals, or simply how your day went.  Just keep writing! 

Your life story is rich, filled with adventure, drama, and romance!  Why not share it with the Lord and take advantage of  the benefit of of self-evaluation and appreciation for how far the Lord is taking you.  Try journaling to revive your prayer life....You just might like it!

Until next time!

**Praying With My Pen, is from a collection of original poems by Alfred Harris, Sr. entitled "Scarecrows in the Vineyard" (copyright 2005)

Sunday, September 21, 2014


I just read a little book by Andy Stanley.  I mean less than a hundred pages entitled, Since Nobody is Perfect, How Good is Good Enough?  It really started  me to thinking about one of the biggest worries weighing on some
Christians' mind, Eternal Security!  With so many different philosophies and religions to choose from, most that conflict with each other, how can one be sure they've chosen the right one?  Makes you wonder if our best option isn't to be as good as you can and hope for the best!

But the title of the book begs this question:  Just how good is good enough?  I've tried a few strategies of my own, none that have proven very successful, but at least I tried.  Like keeping the Ten Command-
ments (Exodus 20: 3-17). 

 I thought that would be a good place to start, since that's what every Sunday School teacher, I've ever had since childhood assured me would probably do the trick.  But I didn't even get past the first one, Thou shalt have no other gods before me.  It wasn't until I dug a little deeper in the scriptures that I found out that an idol is more than a wooden or stone object one bows down to and worships, but could be something as simple as thinking it okay to skip church and bible study for a few weeks to work overtime for a new bedroom suite I saw at Kittle's!  What a disappointment to read Colossians 3:5 and find out that anything inciting earthly desires or greed and comes before God is also idolatry.

I tried this one too:  Let your conscience be your guide! Another flop for me.  I was doing pretty good for awhile, my mom and others really did a job on me, piling on the guilt whenever I did something wrong.  But then I found out that you really can ignore your gut...or that little voice in your head, if you really want to!  All it takes is a little practice and before you know it you hardly hear it at all.  For Christians, our conscience is activated by the Holy Spirit, but it is possible for us to quench His power and effect in our lives (I Thess. 5:19)

Who could find fault in this last one!  Doing good deeds!  I mean people are helped and you get brownie points from almost everyone once they find out about it!  It also helps with the guilty conscience we talked about above, because to some people ways of thinking if you do enough good things you can actually wipe out all the bad stuff you said or did in the past!  Sorry, this won't get you in the kingdom either!  So just what does it take to know for sure you're going to heaven when you die?  YOUR FAITH IN JESUS!

*You'll never be good enough (Romans 3:10-12; Psalms 14:3; Mark 10:18)
*Any good deeds or acts you perform count for nothing (Isaiah 64:6; Ephes. 2:9)
* The law was never meant to save us but to teach us that we are sinners!(Galatians 3:23-25)

Only by admitting that you are a sinner - NEED
Realizing that Christ is the only sure - WAY
Surrendering your will for His - ACCEPT
Live daily by grace will you get- ASSURANCE


(Hope I see you there!)

Sunday, September 14, 2014

BECOMING A KINGDOM WOMAN, Part 6, Your Potential!

With God...Unlimited Possibilities!  This has long been my mantra for achieving life dreams.  Even when I dare not express them out loud fearing ridicule or when some insensitive dream crusher takes great pains to let me know such is out of the realm of possibility, I never stop believing that God can use me.

How wonderful to know that God does use ordinary women like you and me to achieve great things in the world!  It brings to mind 2 Timothy 2:20-21, But in a great house there are not only vessels of gold and silver, but also of wood  and clay, some for honor and some for dishonor. Therefore if anyone cleanses himself from the latter, he will be a vessel for honor, sanctified and useful for the Master, prepared for every good work.  As Kingdom Women, we all started out as shapeless, dirty globs of clay but now we are chosen vessels ready to be used by God!

Chrystal Evans Hurst ended this powerful study with a story of three ordinary women in the bible. They not
only share the qualities we discussed in past Kingdom Woman, lessons but they also share a very common name, Mary!  One was a young peasant girl selected from all humankind to become the mother of Jesus, our Savior.  Another was the quiet but introspective sister of Lazarus, good friend to our Lord as an adult.  And the last one was a female disciple who didn't let her past experiences, gender or low status in society keep her from serving right alongside the other twelve.

So what can these ancient sisters tell us about unlocking potential in the 21st century?  You'd be surprised.  

Don't let the first Mary's meekness fool you.  Meekness is not weakness!  Yes, she was young, but she was also courageous.  A child out of wedlock was a death sentence in her day (Deut. 22:13-21).  Yet she accepted her divine assignment with determination and total confidence in God.  This  is so unlike the counsel of top life coaches of our day.  Many will tell you to put your confidence in your skills and abilities. Assert yourself against the competition when opportunities arise. Never leave an interview with unanswered questions, in fact come prepared to ask some of your own!  Mary's potential for greatness was not in an impressive resume but in a humble demeanor and quiet confidence in God! (Isaiah 30:15b)

Mary of Bethany, the second Mary had two qualities that are essential for a Kingdom Woman's success:   Scripture discernment and the ability to set priorities. Even under the scrutiny and criticism of close relations, Mary chose that which was important, availing herself of the Word of God before setting about daily affairs. How many hours have you sat in so-called success seminars; career workshops, and when possible at the feet of perceived gurus hoping to be mentored to power and acclaim!  All at the expense of personal time with the Lord; praying and reading His word!  Mary never ceased marveling at the Words of Christ.  Two thousand years later Christ is still honoring her decision.

Many miss just how radical Jesus was for His time until you take a close look at His relationship with Mary Magdalene.  She was in my eyes, a fully formed Kingdom Woman! In the vernacular of today, she was FIERCE!  She had her own money, in fact, a woman of means as she traveled with and supported the ministry of  Christ (Luke 8:3).  She was a leader among the women, her name being mentioned first whenever female followers are named (Luke 8:2-3; Matt. 27:56, 61, 28:1).  And while most of the disciples hid away in fright she was a faithful witness of the crucifixion and resurrection of Christ. In  fact it was she, whom Christ chose to first to reveal Himself!  Mary was a servant above all else! How great is that! Wasn't it Christ who said, whoever is great among you shall be your servant (Mark 10:43).   Mary always showed up to serve and so should we!

Yes, our Kingdom woman study has ended but our influence, power, and reign will continue through our legacy.  Just remember what the three Mary's taught us, like a Chosen Vessel:

1.  Be Clean  (Holy and acceptable to God)
2.  Be Empty (Humbly receiving His Word)
3.  Be Available (Hands open for service)

Until we meet again!


Sunday, September 7, 2014


Legacy, an inheritance, a gift bequeathed to others after a person's death. 

There's an old adage that says, behind every great man there's a great woman. I know that's meant to be a complement, but quite honestly, I'm not buying it! Great women do not stand behind great men.  They stand on the shoulders of other great women!  And talking about great women...Tony Evans' family sure has a boat load.  But if you look close enough you'll find some in your family too!

In week five's session, our study groups heard from First Lady, author, mother, and grandmother Dr. Lois Evans.  She is the wife of Dr. Tony Evans and proud mother of Chrystal Evans Hurst the co-author of Kingdom Woman. She began with a poignant recollection of her mother and grandmother, great women in her life and encouraged us all to look deeply within ourselves to find that same greatness to pass on to others!

What an inspirational message!  But wait a minute...did she really say there was greatness in me?  Indeed she did because this greatness originated not in degrees, accomplishments or the accolades of man, not on circumstances but in a relationship!    If you know Christ as Lord...You have an arranged, authorized, accrued, legal, literal, unconditional, everlasting, eternal official relationship with Greatness!  You're already a Kingdom Woman!  Christ's death bought it all for us.  Our task is simply becoming more of who we already are positionally (Ephesians 2:10; I Peter 2:5; Galatians 3:26-29).

Take a look at this wonderful affirmation:


Having a little trouble wearing that Kingdom crown?  Encourage yourself with the blessings of Deuteronomy 28:1-10.  You will find that fruitfulness and bountifulness is yours! Your enemies will be defeated and honor and respect for you will not be denied.  There's but one condition...You must listen to and obey God's commands carefully.  Trusting Him in total surrender!  Not a bad deal is it?

Here's the point:  When we die we're going to leave some kind of a legacy!  Will it be heartache, turmoil, financial debts, some generational curse OR will it be faith, compassion, gratitude and perseverance?  The choice is entirely up to you! (Prov. 13:22a)

Leaving a Legacy is simply this:  To live today with Tomorrow in Mind! (From the book, Resolution for Women, by Priscilla Shirer)  

Sunday, August 31, 2014


Not all disabilities are physical or mental.  Some may be spiritual with a physical manisfestation like the woman in Luke 13:10-17.  When Jesus declared in verse 12: Woman thou art loosed, He wasn't acting as a mere Chiropractor, He was restoring this afflicted sister to spiritual health! He became the Source of  her hope. After eighteen years of praying, worshipping and church going with nothing happening...she finally met Christ!

I dare say that this is happening to bound up women in our church every week!  Going to church and leaving church in the same condition they came! That's why Dr. Evans' exposition of  this text proved especially eye-opening in our fourth session of Kingdom Woman, Embracing Your Purpose, Power and Possibilities.  I love that word possibility, don't you?  It immediately lightens every burden and makes any situation bearable!  It's been said that humans can live forty days without food, four days without water, four minutes without air, but not four seconds without hope! 

A Kingdom woman never has to succumb to the depths of despair no matter how dire the circumstance may look for like Cinderella, her Prince is on His way!  Here's a quote from the study: If all you see is what you see, you may not see all there is to be seen!   Many of our trials are blessings under construction.  When you see a house being built it doesn't look like much at first. A slab of concrete for a foundation and a few pieces of timber set here and there for a frame. The rest looks like an unruly mess!

Stuff might happen!  You may have to change contractors, make some adjustments along the way, but you know it's going to become that dream house that the architect promised because you've seen the blueprint! Well, God is our Architect and the Bible is our Blueprint!

Hebrews 11:1 says that Faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things unseen.  Did you get that last part?  The evidence is in that which is not seen!  You are more than what others can see!  Only in God's kingdom does your value go up the longer you are around.  So go ahead boldly ask for what you want, never giving up hope that you can receive it if it is God's will. 

 Just remember that when a Kingdom Woman doesn't get what she prays for....she changes her perspective!  She stops looking for the external and begins to look inward where the Spirit of God resides.  There like the infirmed woman she has an encounter with God...then hope  truly becomes a reality and everything changes!


Sunday, August 24, 2014

BECOMING A KINGDOM WOMAN, Part Three, The Refining

Trust the process!  Those three words summarized for me the gist of session three, of our six week study.  It was entitled, The Refining of a Kingdom Woman.  Sometimes it feels like I'll never make it!  I've blown it too many times! I'll never  be all that God wants me to be!  I'm not talking about the misguided goal of perfectionism discussed in last week's blog.  Just achieving the Christian ordinary!  Rendering reasonable service, as Paul describes it in Romans 12:1-2.  That which is sacred and spiritual.  Rational and intelligent acts that please God.

There's nothing more pitiful than a defeated Christian!   And that's the attitude, I just wrote
 about above.  Although it is quite normal to have times of doubt and discouragement on this Christian journey, we must not lose hope!  We have to remember that our quest to become Kingdom minded is not a sprint but a marathon.  We've just got to trust the process!  

God has been using flawed humans since the Garden of Eden!  Whereas mankind generally frowns upon using goods that are damaged, called seconds, or irregulars.  God has a whole bible full of them!  Men and women who would never make any one's Who's Who, list of the prestigious.   Chrystal Evans Hurst gives us a sampling of them in this list:

*Noah was a drunk
*Abraham was too old
*Isaac was a daydreamer
*Jacob was a liar
*Leah was ugly
*Joseph was abused
*Moses had a stuttering problem
*Samson was a womanizer
*Rahab was a prostitute
*David had an affair and was a murderer
*Peter denied Christ
*Paul was too religious
* Lazarus was dead

 God achieved great and mighty things through these damaged goods! And He can do the same thing with us.  If only we will submit our shortcomings, our failure, our flaws to Him for refining! 

 To  refine means to purify, to free from imperfection, to remove impurities, dross, sediment or rubbish!  That's what the blood of Jesus did for us!  ...the blood of Jesus Christ, His Son , purifies us from all sin (I John 1:7b).  All the trials, the setbacks, the struggles with temptations we experience are mere refining tools of Christ to make us into what He has already ordained us to be!  "Being confident of this, that He that hath begun a good work in you will carry it on to completion until the day of Christ Jesus (Philippians 1:6)

Chrystal went on to explain that the ugliest, most beat up pots in the kitchen are the ones that are most used and produce the best flavor because they are seasoned!  Kingdom woman in the making, we must learn to use our scars and wounds not hide them for they are evidence of the mighty power of God and what He can do with imperfect lives.  Like the ugly pots in your cupboard we can be the ones God uses  to produce good results.  We just have to learn to trust the process!

Remember,  God is not through with any of us yet we are just on His Refining Wheel!

Sunday, August 17, 2014


diamond in the rough, is a diamond sure enough, but before it ever sparkles, it is made of diamond stuff.  But first someone must find it, or else it won't be found.  And then someone must ground it, or else it won't be ground.  But when it's found and when it's ground and when it's burnished bright, that diamond everlastingly just flashes out its light...(anonymous author)

In week two of our Kingdom Woman study we learned that like precious diamonds we all start out dirty and flawed! What a relief it was for many of us who thought a Kingdom woman had to be perfect!  I mean isn't that the rhetoric we've been hearing for years?  At almost every Women's Day program I've attended, the icon of the Christian woman, The Proverbs 31 Woman has been presented in one form or another.  You know the one who rises while it's still night and whose lamp does not go out at night fall.  Whose house and family are well appointed and happy.  Who sells real estate and feeds her entire household.  But did you notice in verse 15 that she had hand maidens?  Girl friend, had some help with all that work!

Dealing with our past was in a question that turned up the discussion knob last week.  It had to do with disclosure or the level of transparency needed when giving a personal testimony. Chrystal Evans Hurst used the Samaritan Woman, of John 4 as an example.  She called her the Kimberlite woman, referencing the dirty, rock like substance that covers all diamonds before it is mined. This was a woman with a past...a dark, dark past!  Yet, Jesus Christ purposely sought her out to share His love with her! 

Imagine that!  Christ, Himself, digging through the dirt and mire of her past sexual relationships to let her know that the only relationship that mattered was the one she has with Him!  If you follow the scripture lesson, you'll see that she tried to evade it too but after this encounter with Christ, she hurriedly ran through the town testifying  in John 4:29, to come see a Man who told me all things I ever did.  

So the question remains.  How much should you tell about your past when giving testimony of the transformation that took place after meeting Christ?  It's much as the Holy Spirit prompts you at any given time!  If He prompts you to share, believe me somebody out there needs to hear it and profit from it!  Guilt and shame about our past is one tool that the Enemy uses to keep us in bondage but it has no validity (Romans 8:1).  Nobody wants to dish out dirt on themselves and of course we never want to be gossip fodder even if it's only among good church folks.  Note I said church folks not Saints...there's a difference you know!

But as a good friend reminded me, and which was repeated more than once in our study, becoming a Kingdom Woman is a process!  Being absolutely transparent about our past is one of those rough hills we must climb to claim what every Kingdom Woman must have--Authenticity!  The courage to be real has more than one of us, dusting off kimberlite, but it gets easier the more you realize just how amazing God's grace is in your life. 

Chrystal described it like this.  It is the realization that...What Jesus did for one, He can do for you!   It truly does keep us humble, compassionate, and sensitive to sisters who are still making their way, tracking kimberlite dust all the way!  Be Encouraged!