Re: Faith

John 14:1-3cropped-spectacles.jpg
“Don’t let your hearts be troubled. Trust in God, and trust also in me. 2 There is more that enough room in my Father’s home. If it were not so, would I have told you that I am going to prepare a place a place for you? 3 When everything is ready, I will come and get you, so that you will always be with me where I am NLT
Ordinary men with a special purpose: Jesus did not select his disciples because they came from a certain cut of cloth, or from any particular class, these men he chose couldn’t have been more ordinary. What made them special is the assignment he had for them. In order to complete this assignment, their faith needed work
(Matthew 14:19-21) And he directed the people to sit down on the grass. Taking the five loaves and the two fish and looking up to heaven he gave thanks and broke the loaves. Then he gave them to the disciples, and the disciples gave them to the people. They all ate and were satisfied, and the disciples picked up the twelve basketsful of broken pieces that were left over.
Luke 10 tells us that Jesus had many other disciples, though these twelve were exposed to miracles and healings of Jesus that many others hadn’t. Yet they just didn’t get it-in-fact, a couple of them lost faith altogether. We too are selected for a very special assignment for the kingdom and the growth in our faith is from the workings of the Holy Spirit in our lives, our faith is being tempered where we are most vulnerable.
John 6:5 Jesus soon saw a huge crowd of people coming to look for him. Turning to Philip, he asked, “Where can we buy bread to feed all these people?
Where will your next ounce of faith come from?


Let your spiritual roots go deep:

Mark 8:34-35

And now I commend you to God and to the word of His grace, which is able to build you up and to give you the inheritence among all those who are sanctified (Acts 20:32)

Then he called the crowd to join his disciples, he said, “If any of you wants to be my follower, you must give up your own way, take up your cross and follow me 35 If you try to hang on to your life, you will lose it. But if you give up your life for the sake of Good News, you will save it NLT
The Gospel of Mark focuses on and highlights the miraculous work of Jesus Christ. A part of Jesus’ life he purposely intended for Mark and the rest of the disciples to see. We see in this part of the journey opportunities for spiritual growth was in abundance. If it weren’t enough for the constant needling of the Jews and Pharisees to trip Jesus up, there was the disciples suffered spiritual blindness. Two miracles are recorded in this passage: The healing of the blindman and the feeding of the 4000, Two miracles that spoke directly to the shortcomings of the disciples. In the healing of the blindman, he received full restoration of his sight after Jesus touched his eyes twice. Why? Spiritual maturity is a process, the greater our faith becomes, the clearer we see the work of Jesus in us. In the feeding of the 4000, He is powerful and faithful to meet our needs and He does so with abundance.
The message: The Holy Spirit of the Lord is continuously at work in us, performing miracles of healing, restoration, and moving mountains, so that we would know him as Lord and Savior



cropped-image1.jpeg1 Corinthians 13:2
If I had the gift of prophecy, and if I understood all of God’s secret plans and possessed all knowledge and if I had such faith and I could move mountains, but didn’t love, I would be nothing NLT
Knowledge and possession; Our built-in defenses:
Like insects, we live in a castes system, we have established hierarchies or rich vs poor, wealthy vs the marginalized, the oppressors and the oppressed. These lines of demarcation are necessary for the sake of our self-preservation-if we’re being honest, we might even find these within the walls of the church. Quite the opposite of the commandments of the Lord and our true calling. We’ve become comfortably calloused.
Paul’s message is not new, it wasn’t some cleverly prepared speech he gave-this message is timeless and the Lord’s commandment (Matthew 22:35-40, Mark 12:28-34). A commandment Jesus lived out and demonstrated for our sake. *If we do not love, we Are nothing, we Have nothing! A scary proposition because love takes faith, it is going “All-in” and forsaking all we are and have become, it takes vulnerability, it takes transparency-allowing the others to see me for who I truly am. True love can only come from a standpoint of our brokenness. *And he took the bread, gave thanks broke it and gave it to them, saying, “This is My body given to you; do this in remembrance of Me LUKE 22:19. Sounds familiar? “True love” is Obedience. Jesus’ obedience was rooted in his love for the Father who by extension expressed His love for us. (Matthew 22:35-40) 36 Master, which is the great commandment in the law? 37 Jesus said unto him, Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind. Our prayer is simple, we pray that as we search our hearts that we allow these barriers we have built to be broken so that we can enjoy generous amounts of God’s agape love and that it would overflow on to others. Much love, God bless


In due time; “God’s time!”

1 Chronicles 17:11-12 When your time comes to be with your fathers, I will raise up after you your descendant, who is one of your sons, and I will establish his kingdom.12 He will build a house for Me, and I will establish his throne forever HCSB


There was no question when it came to David’s heart for God. After all, he was responsible for transporting the Ark of the Covenant and all the elements of the temple. Despite his concern that God had no permanent temple, we see that God had another plans for him; plans that would ultimately affect God’s overall plan for His people. We need to understand the designated place for His temple had not yet been reached. God’s house will be built and with all the deserving splendor-That has been ordained and long been established. God knows the intentions of our hearts, therefore, aligning our hearts with the will of God should be our greatest aspiration. Only then can we appreciate that our present assignment is conditioning us for a much bigger outcome. Thursday’s Blessings




In anticipation for the season, I started thinking about my personal walk with the Lord,  and the level of passion for what He had done. I couldn’t help but think that my once  burning passion to know and love him has somehow dwindled to this flickering flame.  It’s time to revive my passion and renew this love affair!

John 5:31-32 “If I were to testify on my own behalf, my testimony would not be valid.32 But someone else is also testifying about me, and I assure you everything he says about me is true (Matthew 3:11-12)

Our Greatest Testimony for Jesus is in the way we Live Out our Faith in the eyes of the world.

John 5: 35-36 John was like a burning and shining lamp, and you were excited for a while about his message. Keep the fire from burning out.

John was Filled with Excitement:
Matthew 3:3 The prophet Isaiah was speaking about John when he said,” He is a voice shouting in the wilderness, Prepare the way for the Lord’s coming! Clear the way for Him

They were Convicted:
Acts 4:33 The apostles testified powerfully to the resurrection of the Lord Jesus and God’s great blessing was upon them all.

THEY WERE HUNGRY and came in eager anticipation:
Matthew 2:9 After this interview the wise men went their way. And the star they has seen in the east guided them to Bethlehem.
Luke 2:8 The angels of the Lord appears to the shepherds to tell them of the Savior’s birth. The shepherds then made their way to the village to see for themselves.


THEY WITNESSED FEARLESSLY: Confident on which authority they stood.
Isaiah 61:1 The Spirit of the Sovereign Lord is upon me, for the Lord gas anointed me to bring good news to the poor. He has sent me to comfort the brokenhearted and proclaim that captives will be released and prisoners will be freed.


Fearlessly proclaiming the Gospel


The authority in which I profess my faith

(Mark 1:21-22) And they went into Capernaum, and immediately on the sabbath he entered the synagogue and was teaching. 22 And they were astonished at his teaching, for he taught them as one who had authority, and not as the scribes.

(Mark 1:27) And they were all amazed, so that they questioned among themselves, saying, “What is this? A new teaching with authority! He commands even unclean spirits and they obey him.”

Jesus’ first appearing to the disciples after his crucifixion, and ascension. He is headed toward Capernaum where the work of the would begin. For those who believed, this was a much welcomed event, For others, His coming was a threat.

(1:22) They were astonished at His teaching because unlike the scribes, He was teaching them as one having authority.

Jesus taught against the treasured traditions of religious law (Torah) and with the conviction of the Holy Spirit. (6:2) When the Sabbath came, He began to teach in the synagogue, and many who heard Him were astonished. “Where did this man get these things?” they said. “What is the wisdom given to Him and how are these miracles performed by his hands?”.
He received His power and authority from the Father, the source far greater than Himself. We receive power through the blood of the cross, and the in-dwelling Holy Spirit. This is the gospel we preach.

The truth causes fear:

Chap 3. This movement must be stopped! Jesus’ preaching, and performance of miracles went against religious Law, and undermined the authority of the Pharisees (Mark 3:1-2) 1 Again he entered the synagogue, and a man was there with a withered hand. 2 And they watched Jesus, to see whether he would heal him on the Sabbath, so they might accuse him.

Proof?! You want Proof, Proof is easy, Now, Faith, takes work. P. Jillette

Countless miracles were witnessed that attested to the true identity of Jesus Christ the Mesaiah. These accounts is the substance of our faith.



The Perfect Sacrifice


3 main topics: Perfect sacrifice, Exhortation to Godliness, and Warnings against “Deliberate” sin.

The “Perfect Sacrifice”

I. Atonement: (10:1) Since the Law has only a shadow of the good things to come, and not actual realities, it can never perfect the worshippers by the same sacrifices year after year. “Just” appeasement according to the Law could never be achieved as long as the biases, and prejudices (of man) influenced the out-comes (San Hedrin).

II. Sin sacrifices-Counter-intuitive to God’s plan: Served as reminders of their sinful nature-Condemnation vs Re-conciliation: (10:2) Otherwise, wouldn’t they have stopped being offered. since the worshippers, once purified would no longer have ant consciousness of sins?

III. The Perfect Provision provided by God, long before Jesus’ birth. (10:5-7)
5 Therefore as He was coming into the world, He said:
You did not want an offering
but You prepared a body for Me
6 You did not delight in whole burnt offerings
and sin offerings
7 Then I said, “See-
it is written about Me
in the volume of the scroll-
I have come to do your will, God!”


A study in the book of Colossians


One of 4 prison epistles wrote by Paul. During Paul’s ministry in Ephesus, he sends Epaphras (Fellow slave) ahead into Lycras valley to visit. Along the way, Epaphras plants a church in Collosae, a city whose population consisted of Phrygians (Fre Gee Ans), Greeks, and Jews. The Jewish population was significantly higher here as was their heretics (false teachers).

“Stoicheia” Gk. Meaning Wisdom
The church however, was mostly Gentiles.
Paul forewarns his fellow workers of the challenges they will encounter during their visit, and to guard themselves against the heresy of the Jews and agnostics (unbelievers). Paul writes this letter as a theological antidote to counter the Collosian heresy which they (false teachers) called philosophy:
[Colossians 2:11] You were circumcised in Him with a circumcision not with human hands, by putting off the body of the flesh in circumcision of the Messiah [2:8 a] Let no one disqualify you, insisting on ascetic practices and worship of angels….
As we move through the book of Collosians, pay attention and look out as Paul touches in these teachings, ascetic practices and rituals (Circumcision, human tradition, reasoning, *Sabbath observance, food regulations, festival participation, worshipping of angels).
*Asceticism; deprivation, promotion of harsh treatment of one’s evil fleshly body

1-8 Paul’s salutations, greetings: Expression of joy for the good works and steadfastness of fellow workers, and how the Gospel is spreading throughout the world, bearing fruit as a result of their efforts and many more like them. [4] for we have heard of your faith in Christ Jesus and the love you have for all the saints because of the hope reserved for you in heaven [7] You have learned from Epaphras, our dear fellow slave, he is a faithful servant of the Messiah on your behalf.

9 for this reason also, since the day we heard this, we haven’t stopped praying for you we are asking that you may be filled with the knowledge if His will, in all wisdom and understanding.
So remember the size of God, whom you’ve been reconciled with, and receive your power [ 15] He is in the image of the invisible God, the first born over all creation [16a]For everything was created by Him ,in heaven and on earth , the visible and invisible…

Then he closes with encouraging words to remain steadfast for the sake of the Gospel, but mostly to be fortified in spirit to stand against the Heretics [24] Now, I rejoice in my sufferings for you. I am completing I my flesh what is lacking in Christ’s affliction in His body.

SO WHAT? Remain grounded in the word and accountable to the message. John 5:39 You pore over the scriptures because you think you have eternal life by them, yet they testify about me. We must remain yoked with one another and continue encouraging each other so that we can better protect ourselves and against these false teachers and doctrine, you will know them by their fruit! Philippians 4:2-3-I urge Euodia and I urge Syntyche to agree I the Lord. [3] Yes, I also ask you to partner, to help these women who have contended the Gospel at my side, along with Clement and the rest of my co-workers whose names are in the book of life




Lion_of_Judah_19BIG FAITH
Now faith is the reality of what
Is hoped for, the proof of what is not seen.
2 For our ancestors won God’s approval by it.
3 By faith we understand that the universe was created by command,
so that what is seen has been made from the things that are not visible

Hebrews 11:1-3 HCSB
What more evidence and affirmation of God’s power and faithfulness do We need to make is actually step out in faith?

The truth is, God validates Himself by His completed works “Creation” and “Prophecy” bringing to pass what has not been done yet, according to His word. The substance of our faith is in the second part of this statement where our spiritual feet are held to the fire, at that point that validates exactly where we stand in this faith we profess.

Exodus 14:15-16 [15]The Lord said to Moses, “Why are you crying out to me? Tell the Israelites to break camp.[16] As for you, Lift up your staff, and stretch out your hand over the sea and divide it so the Israelites can go through the sea on dry ground.

Perhaps there is a giant we are presently dealing with that is begging our attention, but because of spiritual immaturity, we won’t stare it down and slay it. The danger is the longer we avoid it, the more it matures. 1 Corinthians 9:24 tells us to commit to training, beat our bodies so that we will have the endurance to finish this race.
Our challenge, stare down the giant in front of us, slay it, and wait for our next assignment.

(1 Timothy 1:18) Timothy, my son, I am giving you this instruction in keeping with the prophesies previously made about you, so that by them you may strongly engage battle [19] Some have rejected these and suffered the shipwreck of their faith.

Re: Love; Being recognized by the fruit you bear

1 John 4:20 spectacles
If someone says, ”I love God, but hates his fellow believer that person is a liar; for if we don’t love people we can see, how can we love God whom we cannot see NLT
Part 2 of this chapter is the sword, the defining line between the man living according to the will of God versus the man remains hostile to God. John uses love because it is the purest virtue imparted to man from God that will reveal the true state of the heart.
One thing we must understand is true love is founded on God and nothing else. Love cannot be manufactured, it is not an emotion we summon as we feel. Apart from God we are incapable of love:
Love is unconditional (1 John 4:9-11): It has no prejudices or judgement, and keeps no record of wrong, love is undeserving where we are concerned; This is love: not that we loved God, but he loved us and sent his Son as an atoning sacrifice for our sins (1 John 4:10).
Recognizing love; How can we tell if we are showing love to others? The one who loves reflects God in all his ways, because God lives in him: (1 John 4:17) This is how love is made complete among us so that we will have confidence on the day of judgement: In this world we are like Jesus.

Speaking to God

What is the most important factor in any relationship? ____*When we accepted the Lord as Savior, we entered this relationship with God. We vowed to grow in Him so that we might learn obedience and love, that we might have more knowledge about him.  Knowing that, in His omniscience, He is the only One capable of reading minds and knowing our thoughts. Our first assignment is to learn quickly to establish and maintain lines of communication and do it in a way that is most effective. breakthrouh3

Speaking to God, how do we, where do we begin? “Prayer” Establishing lines of communication by Speaking the language of God. God speaks every language, and, in every language, there is a decorum (protocol), a specific level of reverence to approaching God.
So, how do we (I) pray?
Jesus gave us an example while he was at Gethsemane, the Model (Lord’s) prayer.
(Matthew 6:9-13) 9 After this manner therefore pray ye: Our Father which art in heaven, Hallowed be thy name. 10 Thy kingdom come, Thy will be dome in earth as it is in heaven. 11 Give us thus day our daily bread, 12 And forgive us our debts, as we forgive our debtors. 13 And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil: for Thine is the kingdom, and the power and the glory, forever, Amen.
This prayer was not only an example, but commandments.
“Our Father which art in heaven” In Aramaic Abba father; like a child addressing his earthly father. We approach God from a point of familiarity, like a family member.
“In heaven” Have a proper view of God a proper respect for His name, acknowledging Him as creator, sustainer of all things. Approach Him with reverence.
Hallowed by thy name: He is Holy, He is sinless, He is glorious. And we live to reflect Him in our life. Hallowed be thy name!
(Part 2) Virtues:
“Your kingdom come Your will be done” Complete submission of will, in Gethsemane: Not my will but Your will be done (Luke 22:42), in His conversation with Pilate, if my kingdom where of this world, my followers would fight for it. My kingdom is not of this world, (John 18:36). I forsake all that I am and will keep your commandments until the date of Your return.

“Give us this day our daily bread” Turn from self-reliance and become totally dependent on Him to meet our needs. The Lord our God gets excited when we bring our needs before him, But Jesus wasn’t referring to our physical needs, rather: *If anyone follows Me let him deny himself pick up his cross and follow me (Matthew 16:24): God knows temptation would be our downfall, that this would be our fall from grace. In following the will of God, we have access to the saving grace that will cause a transformation of our hearts: “The will of God will never take you where the grace of God cannot hold you (anonymous).

“Forgive us our debts as we forgive our debtors.” Jesus did not mean monetarily, but the debt of our sin, our disobedience toward God the Father. Forgive me of what I owe, He meant payment of sin-debt we could never repay.
b. “As we forgive our debtors” That we will extend this same forgiveness given to us. Vs 14-15 If we forgive others we will be forgiven, but if we don’t, we will not be forgiven. *Don’t let unforgiveness to be your bondage. Subconsciously, we carry it like a sword, it is the open wound that won’t heal.
“And lead us not into temptation but deliver us from evil.” Again, having total dependence and reliance on God. Submitting wholly to Him as our deliverer from sin and restorer back into His fold.
*So, what?
Speaking with God is a dialogue a two-way conversation. We speak with God, not to or at Him.
Avoid distractions: Our conversation with God is much clearer when we are totally focused on Him and He is given our full attention.
Memorize the Lord’s prayer. Not so we can mindlessly quote it, but to give our prayers structure. So that we can “insert” the specifics of our life as we offer dynamic prayers.

Do you know my Jesus? “The Gospels”

Then he went down and settled in a town called Nazareth to fulfill what was spoken through the prophets that he will be called a Nazarene MATTHEW 2:23cropped-sheep
In one of my classes, I had everyone give a description of a person selected at random. We all have a mutual acquaintance with him so it wasn’t much of a task. In the end, everyone submitted a different description of this person. Who’s to say who’s was the correct description and who’s was wrong? We all knew Him and spent time with him.
DIFFERENT NOT NECESSARILY IN ERROR: It is argued that 4 different accounts contradict Jesus’ life and ministry invariably discrediting Christianity altogether. On the contrary, the gospels complement each other rather than contradict one another. Truth, 4 different eye-witness accounts give a much more complete picture of who Jesus (the man) and his divinity. The fact that these accounts were made at different times in different settings confirm there was no collusion in collecting these stories.
The Gospels are a collection of books surrounding Jesus’ life, his earthly ministry, death, resurrection, and ascension; Prophecies. He is coming to be persecuted so that the will of the Father will be done (ISAIAH 9:6-7) For to us a son is given; and the government shall be on his shoulder, and his name shall be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace 7 Of the increase of his government of peace the will be no end ESV. So that we may reconciled back to God: [JOHN 14:3] And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again and will take you to myself, that where I am you may be also.
OT prophecies began unfolding in the book of Matthew and become crystal clear in the Gospels:
MATTHEW: Formally “Levi” A Gentile tax collector. After being called to be a disciple, Jesus re-named him, Matthew meaning, Man if God. His reputation as being greedy and unscrupulous made the Jews hate him. Ironically, Matthew wrote to Jewish audience. The thrust of Matthew’s writings was to convince the Jews that Jesus was the promised Messiah, he referenced OT prophecies to affirm that Jesus was the promised Messiah who would be crucified (Acts 2:36, That He will be resurrected from the dead (Romans 1:1-4). In all, Jesus’ coming fulfilled 353 OT prophecies. Matthew was an accurate recorded keeper Jesus’ life. He researched and documented his lineage and genealogy, Matthew that included Historical records (1:1).
MARK: Also known as “John Mark” Wrote to Roman Gentiles. His writings in the third person suggest he was not an eye-witness, but, knew and spent time with someone who knew Jesus intimately. Recorded Peter’s sermons and accounts intently and in detail. Joined Paul on his first missionary journey (Picked up in Antioch, Corinth). The gospel of Mark moves quickly through Jesus’s miracles on his way to Jerusalem. It wasn’t until his arrival in Jerusalem that this gospel slows and begins recording Jesus’s life in days up to his crucifixion. His message: Repent and Respond!
(Luke 1:2-3) just as the original eye-witnesses and servants of the word handed them down to us. 3 It also seemed good to me, since I have carefully investigated everything from the very first, to write to you in an orderly sequence, most honorable Theophilus.
LUKE (Medical Doctor): “Gentile” Joined Paul on his first missionary journey, possibly from Antioch, Corinth (Asia Minor). Luke wrote the longest book on the NT (Luke/Acts); A doctor himself, Luke focused on Jesus’s miracle healings. Luke wrote Jesus biography in sequence say he was with someone who spent a lot of time with Jesus, and knew him intimately. Luke recorded the birth of Jesus, and John the Baptist, -His was the only to document Jesus childhood, pre-ministry, adult life, and genealogy in such detail. The gospel of Luke records Jesus post-resurrection appearances, describing in detail Jesus’s ascension into heaven ((Luke 24:13-53). The book of Luke tells of the stranger on the road to Emmaus (Luke13:13-35), and of Jesus encounter with Paul.
(John 1:1-5) In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God and the Word was God. He with God in the beginning. All things were created through Him and apart not one thing was created. Life was with Him, and that life was in the light of men. That light shines in the darkness, and yet the darkness did not overcome it.
JOHN: “The disciple Jesus loved” The gospel of John are reflections of his many years with Jesus; Unlike the three others, John emphasizes the identity of Christ as the Son of God and how we should respond to his teachings. The gospel of John is the most theological of all gospels. (John 1: 14) The Word became flesh and took up residence among us. We observed His glory, the glory as the One and Only Son from the Father, full of grace and truth.

Again, Of the 4 Gospel authors, who gave the most accurate account of Jesus? They All did. Each gave a detailed account of a different facet of Jesus Himself;

PRAYER: LORD, we lift you up and praise Your name for giving of Yourself, so we may be reconciled back to you. Thank you for the miraculous transformation taking place within us, and for the continual out pouring out your mercy and grace upon is. Lord, let this hunger, and thirst within us never cease so that we continue to be quenched by Your spirit.

Transparency and Vulnerability


Ephesians 4:25
Therefore, having put away all falsehood, let each one of you speak the truth with his neighbor,
for we are members of one another.
Paul sends this letter to the new believers and the Gentiles in Ephesus, His concern was about the discord among the believers, that their actions were a distraction and disruption to the ministry. His encouragement was for living in harmony, that they may come to worship in one accord. First, they must be firmly planted on the same foundation-Love.
God’s “agape” love (Ephesians 4, and 2:11-22). A virtue so important that the book of Ephesians begins with (Ephesians 1: 3-4) and is concluded in love (Ephesians 6: 23-24).
God’s agape love:
No one has greater love than this, that someone would lay down his life for his friend JOHN 15:13 (HCSB)-A love exemplified 12 verses earlier. By God’s love we have been reconciled back to Himself, both Jews and Gentiles.
The flow of Ministry and Vulnerability.
Ephesians 4:2-3 2 With all humility and gentleness, with patience, accepting one another in love, diligently keeping the unity of the Spirit with peace that binds us. I remember playing a game when we were younger where one person stood with his back toward the group, with eyes closed, they were to fall backward and is caught by the others in the group before hitting the floor. This is child-like trust and vulnerability we are called to possess. Trust that in our blindness, the Lord is faithful to catch us. Trust that in the process, the walls we have built will come tumbling down.
Lynne Thompson Focus on the Family “Living in High Definition”
Taking off our “Happy Faces” at church.
“HDTVs bring clarity and reveal blemishes, imperfections, even wrinkles just as exposes our strengths, weakness, our blemishes”. We wear our “Happy mask” when we come to church in fear of exposing what we are really going through, to hide what we are really feeling.
Stand naked before God, bearing all, so that we can realign ourselves horizontally to Him and so ministry can occur.

The “Nail”
I get compliments from members of the congregation when they are moved by my praise and worship music-My reply, I am a nail pounded into the ground to serve as a conduit that receives the Holy Spirit of the Lord and discharge it into the congregation. All glory to God, Be a “Nail!”