Our First Love

woman sitting while showing heart sign hands

Jesus replied: ‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.’ This is the first and greatest commandment. And the second is like it: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’ ~ Matthew 22:37-39 Last Sunday our Pastor asked the congregation to spend alone time with Jesus. […]

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In God We Take Refuge

photo of woman standing on sunflower field

God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble. ~ Psalm 46:1 Have you ever felt defeated, overwhelmed, and afraid? Trapped in a raging storm for far too long? In difficult times like these, we often search for a hiding place. Sometimes, we try to hide in excessiveness—booze, gluttony, lust—to name a […]

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Godly Living a Choice of the Will


But if serving the LORD seems undesirable to you, then choose for yourselves this day whom you will serve. . .. But as for me and my household, we will serve the LORD. ~ Joshua 24:15 As Christians, we know that we live in a fallen world, therefore it’s possible to sin. However, we must […]

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Praise and Worship—Peace in Times of Struggle

ethnic woman with curly hair dreaming

Often when I’m feeling perplexed by the cares of life, I’ll hear a song that speaks to my heart and helps to calm my restlessness. Such is the case today with I’ll Just Say Yes by Brian Courtney Wilson. Scripture tells us that music is an important part of praise and worship (Psalm 95:1-3; Daniel 2:23; Ephesians 5:18-20). Praise and worship—feelings and expressions of sincere gratitude, reverence, and adoration for God—should be foundational to how we live our lives each day.

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Peace of Mind

young woman with raised arms on beach

And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus. ~  Philippians 4:7 One dictionary defines peace of mind as a feeling of being safe or protected. Another source claims, peace of mind is a mental state of calmness or tranquility, freedom from worry and anxiety. We often […]

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A Faith that Is Not Stressed by Stress

James, the brother of Jesus (Matthew 13:55), became the leader of the church at Jerusalem soon after Jesus’ death and resurrection in 30AD (Acts 1:14 & 12:17). He was called—James the Righteous—by the early Christians. Paul referred to James as one of the pillars of the church (Galatians 2:9). A letter, known as the Letter of James, was written to the Jewish Christians who were under persecution and had been scattered amongst the nations (James 1:1). The letter advised on daily expectations for their attitudes, beliefs, and faith. This letter is the Book of James and is considered the earliest of all the New Testament writings, including the gospels.

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Surveying God’s Written Word

How sweet are your words to my taste, sweeter than honey to my mouth! ~ Psalm 119:103 Many of us don’t think about the Bible as a book-of-books. Nonetheless, the Bible contains 2 testaments, 66 different books, and depending on the version (KJV, NIV, ASV, etc.)… there are approximately 1,189 chapters, 31,173 verses, and 783,173 […]

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Light of the World

silhouette of trees during golden hour

Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father which is in heaven. ~Matthew 5:16 At first, I thought that I was supposed to write about “evil begets evil”. But as I listened more carefully, I realized that the message is about “light begets light”. For with you […]

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Beyond What You See

man sitting near camera

The eye is the lamp of the body. If your eyes are healthy, your whole body will be full of light. ~ Matthew 6:22 Change is hard—lots of change—even harder. Have you ever felt like you were standing on shifting sands? Your left foot going in one direction and your right foot in the other. […]

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Aging Gracefully and Enjoying Life in the Joy of the Lord

woman in black and white polka dot dress raising her hands

My daughter texted me a link to this song. After listing to it, I felt joy in aging gracefully and enjoying life. I texted her back and told her that the song was simply beautiful—And how amazingly happy Gladys Knight looked on the cover—her joyous radiance was evident. I was reminded of the Apostle Paul in Philippians 4:11, Not that I speak in regard to need, for I have learned in whatever state I am, to be content.

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To Know Him

photography of yellow hibiscus under sunlight

The idea, ‘God exist, therefore, I exist—I exist, therefore, God exist’ entered my thoughts this morning. However, God is omnipotent and independent of my existence, while my existence is dependent on God and a testimony to God. No matter how we grapple with reality, it is clear that God exist. We are the proof we often seek. Humans made in the image of God (Genesis 1:27)!

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Guarding Our Hearts for God

person holding purple and white petaled flower

The biblical narrative about the Israelites and Pharaoh (capital “P” denotes numerous pharaohs during this historical time) comes to mind when I consider the seriousness of guarding our hearts. In Exodus 1-18, we learn of the exchange between Moses and Pharaoh. We witness the love of God for His people through miraculous events. We also observe God’s compassion towards Pharaoh. For, He sent Moses to warn Pharaoh numerous times.

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Seeing Jesus Walking in the Midst of Unrest

Maybe it came with the onset of Covid-19 into the world—maybe it was here sooner— visceral unrest permeating the air. Each day’s portion disheartening and more disturbing than the day before. My hiding place of serenity appeared to float off in the distance, drifting, across a tiresome void where my thoughts did not find my voice. Until during fervent prayer with blinding tears… God’s grace covered me with His feathers, and under His wings I found refuge (Psalm 91:4). I heard this song in my spirit, Precious Lord, Take My Hand. I smiled. Psalms 116:8 flashed in my mind, For thou hast delivered my soul from death, mine eyes from tears, and my feet from falling. Precious Lord take my hand, Thy word have I hid in mine heart, that I might not sin against thee (Psalm 119:11).

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God’s Compassion—the Love of Jesus Christ

human hands forming heart on white surface

But you, Lord, are a compassionate and gracious God, slow to anger, abounding in love and faithfulness. ~ Psalm 86:15 During trying times, the topic of God’s wrath or anger often comes up in conversations. Sadly, some folks will attribute the pain and suffering of others to God’s anger towards them. God’s compassion towards humanity […]

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Clarity of Mind and Refreshing of Spirit

Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, For they shall be filled. ~ Matthew 5:6 (NKJV) Today is Day 11 of our “40 Days of Prayer and Fasting” at my church. Today, I am moving in a place of clarity of mind and refreshing of spirit. It is a phenomenal experience. With humility and grace, I […]

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Letting Go and Holding On

But as for you, be strong and do not give up, for your work will be rewarded. ~ 2 Chronicles 15:7 Tommy and I visited our daughter Emily a few weekends ago. A highlight of our trip was the laughs we got from watching her dog Benji (2½-yrs old) and our dog Kobie (10-yrs old) interact. […]

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The God-Assigned Duty of Hospitality

Our senior pastor shared that as far back as we can look into the history of God’s people, one of our God given duties is hospitality. The deliberate act of simply welcoming people into our personal space through our deeds, resources, and words. This is affirmed in Leviticus 19:33–34. Romans 12:13 tells us to pursue hospitality not just during holidays, birthdays, and anniversaries. And not only with those we know… In Hebrews 13:1–2, we are encouraged to show hospitality to strangers… for in doing so we might entertain angels unaware. Therefore, as Christians, we need to develop the perpetual attitude and habit of hospitality.

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You’re Valuable to God

crop black man showing pray gesture

Are not five sparrows sold for two pennies? And not one of them is forgotten before God. Why, even the hairs of your head are all numbered. Fear not; you are of more value than many sparrows.~ Luke 12:6-7 One morning, I saw a bird. The regal fowl leisurely strolled along as it pecked in […]

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Facing Giants in God’s Strength

Sooner or later, we all face giants. By giants, I’m referring to an overwhelming problem or issue that physically drains us and leaves us mentally exhausted. A giant could be fear, sickness, pride, guilt, shame, debt, envy, lust, or gluttony. It could be a feeling of unworthiness, insecurity, doubtfulness, or helplessness. Giants… block our prosperity.

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Forgotten Wisdom: Aesop’s Fables

As I embrace Black History Month—my ancestors—people of color. . . I’m honored by their creativity, ingenuity and sheer perseverance. And while I orientated myself in place and time, Aesop’s Fables came to mind. My brothers and I were often enchanted by stories that our mom told involving some ants and a grasshopper, a fox and […]

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