Mother’s Day

Mildred B. Vermont said, “Being a full-time mother is one of the highest salaried jobs…the payment is pure love.”   Ask any mother today, and she will tell you. To hold a little one and feel love is one of the wonders of the world.

 

 

In 1 John 4:12, the Bible states “God’s abides in us and God’s love is perfected in us.” It is certainly perfected in mothers. A Mother’s love is such a mighty force.

 

 

“A mother is a person who seeing there are only four pieces of pie for five people, promptly announces she never did care for pie.” Tenneva Jordan.~ I LOVE THIS QUOTE!  I remember m mother always said she hated the chicken breast and only wanted the thigh.  Years later when ordering rom KFC she admitted the breast was her favorite but knew we kids liked white meat the best, so she relinquished her choice for a secondary one.

 

 

There was a scientist at the University of Wisconsin who created a mothering machine for little animals. It was made out of wire and covered with terry cloth. Out of the wire was a bottle of milk and there was a light bulb to keep the little one warm. But they found that the little ones were dying because little ones needed love.

 

 

Love is the one thing you cannot recreate with wire, terry cloth, and a light bulb. At some point in your life, someone held you in their arms, close to their heart. They had the look of love in their eyes and a truly open heart. This happened to every one of us; somebody somewhere along the line did this, and it was the greatest expression of love. You know how special it is, and you know how special it was in your life, whether this person was your natural mother, your adoptive mother, grandmother or relative.

 

 

You are here reading this on this day as testimony to that holding. You are able to love because of the love you received. You learned how to love. It was a silent thing, but it was profound and it changed your life, and continues daily. There were times when you made lots of noise, but you were responded to and you were cared for. You were loved.

 

 

The real religion, the only religion that counts (no matter what denominational name we call it) is love. We always have to ask ourselves as a test for religion (which is a system of life) is how loving is this? We should carry our religion of love, our God, into our homes, our lives, and our actions.

 

 

 

Whether we are female or male, we should allow that love to come forth from us, whether for something or someone very young, an adult, or someone that is very old that needs our love. We should always allow that wonderful aspect, the best aspect, of human love to come through us-the love, the magic, of motherhood. And this motherhood is God created.]

 

 

 

Twenty some years ago, a lady came to a minister. She was very, very distressed. She sat in the minister’s office and she said that through a series of events her nephew was coming to live with her. She said to the minister, “I’ve never had any children, and I’m a harsh woman — I admit that. I don’t have the kind of love that I would want to give to a child. I’m scared. How can I, being harsh, hard, and stern in life, give love to this young boy?”

 

 

The minister said to her, “You have God’s love inside of you. If you consent to that God love coming through you, it will come through. It is the love of God that will equip you to love this child. If you allow yourself the privilege of having this love come through, it will come through.”

 

 

She said, “Yes, yes. But I was never created to do that. You don’t understand my nature. You see the good too much, preacher.”

 

 

The minister said, “No. I know that God love can come through you-if you let it.”

 

 

That was many years ago. Today that woman has a grown nephew. She was changed by that experience, and so was he. She was a great aunt; she was a wonderful mothering influence. But she didn’t become something; she allowed something to become her. We, each one of us, already are loving children of God. We just have to allow the nature that our mother (or that individual who was the model of a mother) allowed some time ago, to come through us. Why not do it in honor of mother? What greater honor of a mother than to express today in our lives some of the love she taught us how to express?

 

 

There’s a great story I want to share with you about this same idea. It is a story of an Arabian horse. As a young horse, he was orphaned. This Arabian foal was adopted by a family of camels. Every day he looked around and all he saw were other camels, so he decided that he was going to be the best camel he could be because he didn’t know he was an Arabian horse.

 

 

Daily through the hot sands of the desert he would carry heavy loads. He would drink at every oasis because he was so parched and thirsty. And every day he would put his hooves down into the sand and move slowly because that was the way a good camel was supposed to be.

 

 

One day, when he was very, very old, he looked out across the desert. From his weary eyes he saw an Arabian horse running in the distance on a sand dune. He said to himself, “That is the most beautiful animal I have ever seen in my life!” The shiny mane was flowing back from his head and neck. He said, “If I could only be like that.” He thought to himself, “Once, years ago I had the desire to run, leap high in the air and go over the sand dunes . . .” but he quickly remembered his place as a camel. He died from old age never knowing what he really was.

 

 

The worst thing we can do in human life is to die not knowing what we are. Male or female, we are meant to love; we are meant to express God’s love. We are meant to cuddle little things, nurture, and cause great things to happen in individuals.

 

 

We are meant to celebrate life. According to Jesus Christ, the ultimate way to celebrate life is to love all, realizing we are one in the humanity with each other. Otherwise we’re doing a great disservice, to ourselves, but also to our mothers, because that is the way mom would want it to be.

 

 

Mom told us to play nice on the playground. She told us to treat other people well. We should never forget those lessons in our adult life.

 

 

Being Christian, we talk a lot about Jesus Christ. Perhaps we do not talk enough about His mother and the importance she played, not only in His ministry but in the formation of His life.

 

 

Every mother who has ever conceived a child has conceived miraculously. You know that. When you were in the hospital and held that little one you could not help but to believe in God, love and power that is greater than ourselves.

 

 

When you are a mother, you are never really alone in your thoughts. A mother always has to think twice, once for herself and once for her child.”  Sophia Loren

 

 

Mother love is the fuel that enables a normal human being to do the impossible.

 

 

Jesus’ first miracle says so much about his mother. The wedding at Cana [John 2:1-8, 11].On the third day there was a wedding in Cana of Galilee, and the mother of Jesus was there.” I’m sure she was invited by the family because she knew them. Jesus and his disciples had also been invited to the wedding, but I’m sure they were invited because of Mary. “When the wine gave out, the mother of Jesus said to him, ‘They have no wine.’ And Jesus said to her, ‘Woman, what concern is that to you and to me? My hour has not yet come.’

 

 

I don’t suggest you say to your mother, “Woman. . .”   But in Jesus’ day this was a very endearing term. It was saying, “Marvelous, marvelous lady.” But He was also saying what you’ve said to your mother many times: “Mom, I’m not ready yet. I can’t do this.”

 

 

You know what mom said to you. She said to you in various ways, “I believe in you. You, more than anybody else in the world, can take care of this problem. You’re my son/daughter and I believe in you and I know what you can accomplish with your life.” That’s what mom was saying to Jesus.

 

 

I’m sure there were many other things she said besides what is written down here. I’m sure He went on and on, for ten times, to his mother saying such things as, “Mom, there’s no way I can do this now.” Mary didn’t even listen to Him, just like your mother didn’t listen to you when you said “I can’t.”

 

 

“His mother said to the servants, ‘Do whatever he tells you.’ Now standing there were six stone water jars for the Jewish rites of purification, each holding twenty or thirty gallons. Jesus said to them, ‘Fill the jars with water.’” Keep in mind this was His first miracle.

 

 

You know how it was for you when you were producing your first miracle . . . like that first day of school or the first day on your new job when you felt so insecure. You just didn’t know if you had it in you to do what you had trained all these years to do. Yet this was the time. You had your mother calling and telling you, “I believe in you!”

 

 

“And they filled them up to the rim. He said to them, ‘Now draw some out, and take it to the chief steward.’” You know the rest of the story. They did and it was the finest wine they had ever tasted. It goes on to say,” and his disciples believed in him.” It doesn’t say that then Mary believed; she already knew, and believed. The disciples didn’t, but Mary did. Then at the end of the story it talks of how Jesus went with his mother to the next place they were going.

 

 

Jesus’ mother was so important to Him that the parting words on the Cross, almost the very last thing He said, was, “Woman, behold thy son, and behold thy mother.” He was looking out for his mother. He was getting someone to take care of his mother, whom He valued so highly. He was caring for her, even while He was in great pain.

 

 

Oliver Wendell Holmes said, “The real religion of the world comes from women much more than from men – from mothers most of all, who carry the key of our souls.”

 

 

There is a wonderful story of Abraham Lincoln when he was riding one day in a coach. There was a colonel from Kentucky with him. The colonel reached into his inside vest pocket and took out a container of whiskey. He said, “Here Mr. Lincoln, have a swig of whiskey.”

 

 

Mr. Lincoln said, “No sir; thank you. I never drink whiskey.”

 

 

They rode along a little while longer and the colonel reached into his other vest pocket and took out a big, long cigar and said, “Here Mr. Lincoln. Have a cigar.”

 

 

Mr. Lincoln said to the colonel, “No. I never smoke cigars.”

 

 

Then Mr. Lincoln said, “Let me tell you a story. When I was nine years of age, I was called to my mother’s bed. She held my hand and said, ‘Abe, the doctor tells me I’m very sick and I’m not going to get up from this bed. Dear boy, I want you to promise me something from my deathbed – that you will never smoke or drink.’” Abe Lincoln said to the colonel from Kentucky, “Now, would you wish at this time I break that promise?”

 

 

 

The colonel paused and said, “Oh no, dear kind sir. I would pay $1,000 if I had made that promise and kept it all these years. I would be a better man for it.”

 

 

Abraham Lincoln, when asked about his incredible strength, said, “I remember my mother’s prayers and they have always followed me. They have clung to me all my life.”

 

 

We’ve made many, many promises in our lifetime. Most of them have been to our mothers. And how many thoughts she had for us as she was raising us. How good it is to have a day to honor her and realize that she made us.

 

 

Whenever Alexander the Great was entertaining people in the palace, he
would always put on a special gown that was woven for him by his mother. Every time we go out in public, we put on a gown that was woven for us by our mothers-not only the skin we have, the eyes, teeth, and hair, but also the way we act.

 

 

Perhaps over years we have forgotten some of the things that mom has taught us, but this is a day to remember. This is a day to go back and remember the very best of mom when she was at her best. We become our best by recalling and reliving her best.

 

 

The VERY BEST she taught was LOVE, by her example.

 

 

A man was talking with a woman and asked, “What do you do?” She said, “I’m
just a mother.” This is what Theodore Roosevelt said about being “just a
mother.”

 

 

 

“When all is said, it is the mother, and the mother only, who is a better citizen than the soldier who fights for his country. The successful mother, the mother who does her part in rearing and training aright the boys and girls who are to be the generation of men and women of the next generation, is of better use to the country if only she would realize it. A more honorable as well as a more important position than any man, the mother is the one supreme asset of national life. She is more important, by far, than the successful statesman, businessman, artist, or scientist.”

 

 

 

I have one more story to share with you that will touch you. It is an old
Chinese story. Po Yu did wrong and he cried when his mother chastised him with a stick. “You never used to cry when I thrashed you,” said his mother. “Why do you cry today?”

 

 

He answered, “When I did wrong and you thrashed me, it always used to hurt. But this time mother’s strength is such that it did not hurt. That’s why I cry.”

 

 

Mothers hold their children’s hands for a short while, but their hearts forever.

 

 

Let us pray. Dear God, one of the most incredible gifts you ever gave me as a human being is my physical mother. I thank You for that incredible gift. I thank You for all the times we’ve spent together and all the lessons she shared with me. Every day I will make my life an example of her love, and in my life I will make her love very much alive and her life not wasted. Her love is the life I live.. Lord, we know our mothers were not perfect, nor were or are we. We ask You to bless them whether they are with You in heaven or with us here on earth.

 

 

I thank you, dear mother, for your love, patience, and incredible kindness hour after hour. For the life I have today, I give credit to you.

 

 

 

 

In Jesus Christ’s name I pray and thank you for the love of my mother….. . . . Amen

Advertisements

LOVE

 

1 John 4:8 “He who does not love does not know God, for God is love.”

 
Churches teach the biblical teaching of keeping the Sabbath. If God is love, like our Bible says, then to keep the Sabbath, we must spend 24 hours out of our week, refreshing and cleansing our lives by becoming love. 24 hours every Sunday, not judging or criticizing, not jumping to conclusions, but giving everyone, including ourselves a break. The Sabbath is – a spiritual cleansing of love. With our next celebration coming in a few days………

 

 
Valentine’s Day dates back six centuries. It was a commonly accepted day when they believed birds chose their mates. This goes back even before we linked it with St. Valentine. It has been hearts and flowers ever since. ANY day of the year that we decide we are going to become more loving to humanity, to our spouse, our boyfriend or girlfriend, and to all the people in our lives, it is a true Godly act. Valentine’s Day cards are often a good and fun idea because they help us express the human love as well as the Divine love that is inside us and allows an avenue for that love to come forth.

 
The two great things to hold onto in this world are God and each other. Love is the power that connects different people’s souls, broken by ignorance, fear and  circumstance.   Those of us who come in to the Prayer Room. http://thespiritualfamily.chatango.com  know this love, unconditional love. We share the love of God and the love of each other.   Wouldn’t it be a glorious service to humanity, to begin THIS day, from this message, a chain of love throughout our planet? We can do this by allowing this chain of love to begin with who? WITH US. When we agree to do this, we are saying yes to God. Say, “Yes, this morning I’m going to allow Divine love to flow through me and from me.

 

 

We can begin planning now by declaring that, “I’m going to be loving to everyone I meet. From now on, I’m going to suspend my judgments on people – suspend anger, criticism and condemnation – and I agree to be loving here on out.” Try this for a month and see what happens.   “If, at the end of this experiment, I choose to take up anger, hate, and disagreements with others, I can do that. But for thirty days, I’m going to walk the high path and be a real light to the world. For thirty, maybe forty, days I’m going to truly follow Jesus Christ whose main teaching was love. I’m going to become a sample of God’s love.”

 
Wouldn’t it be great if just for this week we named our prayer group “Valentine;” and what if we become that manifestation and then begin a conscious realization of love for the next thirty days? That means loving everybody in our lives-not just the select few who are easy to love-everybody, especially those few who are difficult to love, and keep that wonderful smile on our face to show to everybody. Make it a beacon for everyone to enjoy, savor, and hold on to. One of the secrets of life is that it’s much easier to love everyone, than to hate some. When we hate or begrudge, it becomes like a poison to the soul, which the person holds onto dearly and causes great stress and illness. The projected hate toward someone results only in negativity. So, let go of that and focus on love.

 
Love is the theme song of the universe. It is power of new life, not just in you but in those people who come to you on your path.

 
We make a great mistake of thinking that love must be returned. To truly be loving, love must free, not bind. It loves with open arms and open hands. We must love all who cross our path, and not expect anything in return. Now, some hearing this will say, “There Pastor Peggy goes again talking about that Pollyanna philosophy.” But this is not Pollyanna in any way. Love is not a matter of escape from life, rather it is a dedication to God.

 

 
When we are from the foundation of God’s love, we go to a new level of awareness of sharing-not really wanting anything from anyone else. At the opening of the Olympics and during them we see the competition but we also see the love the athletes have for each other. We watch many differing people coming together in a celebration of love. Yes, we look at each other and realize we are different, but we don’t care. We don’t ask anything of someone else, we find joy in sharing. Holding hands in spirituality, and standing up for the very best, of what is best in humanity, as a people. We are many different races and faiths becoming one people.

 

 
If we are unwilling to love the human expression of life that we have seen with our eyes, how are we going to love the source – God – which we have not seen? Some people say, “I love God, but it’s people that I can’t stand.” How can we love music and not harmony? How can we love the morning and not the day? Every individual is an inlet and an outlet for the complete love of God.

 

 
AND, we can’t possibly love anyone or anything unless we first love ourselves in a spiritual way. We have to know that if we are going to love, we have to pour that love through us (like a hose). As that love comes through us, what does that do to us (to the inside of the hose)? It cleans us out to the core, too. We become filled with love.
But, if I realize that God’s love has to get through me to get to you and I say, “Oh, I’m no good today. My hair doesn’t look good today. I look tired. This isn’t my good dress. How can I effectively talk about love because I have this outfit on? What was I thinking about?”

 

 
I am the hose of God; it has to flow through me to you.

 

 
In this world today, love is the only safe emotion there is. It is the only safe way in which we can live as a people with our fellow man/woman and with ourselves. Love gives all, but it also demands all. Love is the toughest taskmaster and hardest discipline in the universe. Why? Because we also have the baggage we carry right above our eyes in our own minds.

 

 
We, so easily, can slip back into saying, “Well, wait a minute. You did this to me last Valentine’s Day. I remember.” But, we must rise above our past. Life, to be alive, has to consent to live above yesterday. It is not held down; it is freed today in a brand new life in a brand new awareness of God.

 

 
Here is a quote from Booker T. Washington, a very famous African-American.   Think about, as I print this quote. the time in which he lived, and realize he had the right to hate if anyone did. He said this: “I shall allow no man to belittle my soul by making me hate him.”   It has been said that as soon as you begin to condemn someone, you become one of them.

 

 
Psalms 127:1 states: “Unless the Lord builds the house, those who build it labor in vain.”   This is about more than a stick-built structure. It’s talking about the HOUSE OF OUR LIFE. If God is building our house, what materials does God use? Divine love!
Joel Goldsmith has written: “Illumination dissolves all material ties, and binds men and women together with golden chains of spiritual understanding. It acknowledges only the leadership of Christ. It has no ritual or rule, but Divine love. No other worship than the inner flame that has ever been lit at the shrine of Spirit. This union is the free state of spiritual brotherhood, and sisterhood. The only restraint is the discipline of the soul. Therefore, as we know liberty without license, we are a united universe without physical limits, Divine service to God without ceremony or creed. The illumined walk without fear but by love and grace.”

 

 
Love cannot just stay inside us. It needs to be expressed. We must go the extra mile. We are children of God; and orphans of society are waiting for our love.

 
Look in the Bible at John 3:16.   You’ve heard it before, but let’s take it to a new depth  today. “For God so loved the world . . .”   I like that. It doesn’t say God just loved or cared for or kind of liked the world. It says SO LOVED the world that he gave his only Son, so that everyone who believes in Him may not perish but may have eternal life.
Let’s talk about the size and the scope of God for a moment. The breadth of God-for God so loved the world. The length of God – that he gave his only Son. The depth of God – so that everyone who believes in Him may not perish. The height of God – but may have eternal life.

 

 

Martin Luther called John 3:16 the heart of the Bible. He said it was the gospel in miniature. He said:
“God-the greatest lover,
So loved-the greatest degree,
The world-the greatest number,
His only Son-the greatest gift,
That everyone who-the greatest invitation,
Believes-the greatest simplicity,
In Him-the greatest person,
May not perish-the greatest deliverance,
But-the greatest difference,
May have-the greatest certainty,
Eternal life-the greatest possession.”

 

 

 

There is only one God, and God is Love. Everything else vanishes and love, in reality, stands forth. The Biblical statement “God is love” is accurate in every way. God is not a superman dishing out love to us and expecting it in return. No, God is love, and we are God’s instrument of expression. To love God is to experience the feeling of love and to let love flow through each of us.

 
God is love, and in that love there is no condemnation, disapproval or fault-finding. Love always welcomes its children back into the fold.

 

 
Love always approves. Love, God, approves of us as its child. The approval of love never varies, unlike the sliding scale of human values.

 

 
I’m sure we will have disagreeable people coming to us, people who it would be easy to dislike. Just step back for a moment, step on the right foundation of God’s love, and say in prayer: “Divine love, reveal Thyself to me.”

 

 
Celebrate Valentine’s Day by using this time to make a commitment. Use your prayer time to practice love for the upcoming 40 + days of Lent (beginning March 1; start getting prepared now). Devote yourself to a cease-fire toward that which you find unlovable for the next forty-plus days. (Give it up for Lent, if you observe that tradition.)

 

 

 

Join me in a chain of love with all humanity around us as an experiment. I don’t think we’ll ever regret it or leave it behind.

 
Please join me in prayer in a celebration of the love of God.
On this week celebrating love, we ask You, Lord, to help us become the manifestation of Christ’s love as we rest into Your loving nature, dear God.   Father, create in us this day a desire to mend a quarrel, to seek out a forgotten friend, to dismiss suspicion and replace it with loving trust.   Inspire in us this day to write a love letter or share some treasure or give a soft answer instead of a hard response.. . .

 
Help us, dear God, to appreciate everything and everyone around us.   Help us to be kind, to be gentle, to laugh a little more. Help use to know that we deserve confidence, that we can take up arms against malice, that we can stop complacency and express gratitude.   Help use to remember to go to You, dear God, in prayer every day so we can have Your Divine love and manifest Your Divine love out of the strength we receive during our prayer time.
In the Divine love of Jesus Christ, we pray.
Thank You, God. We love You . . . Amen.

 

 

 

LOVE

With Valentine’s Day coming up, let’s focus on God’s love in our messages for the next few weeks.

LOVE HIM WITH ALL THE HEART AND WITH ALL THE UNDERSTANDING AND WITH ALL THE STRENGTH, AND TO LOVE ONE’S NEIGHBOR AS HIMSELF. Mark12:28 –

“One of the scribes came and heard them arguing, and recognizing that He had answered them well, asked Him, “What commandment is the foremost of all?” Jesus answered, “The foremost is, “HEAR, O ISRAEL! THE LORD OUR GOD IS ONE LORD; AND YOU SHALL LOVE THE LORD YOUR GOD WITH ALL YOUR HEART, AND WITH ALL YOUR SOUL, AND WITH ALL YOUR MIND, AND WITH ALL YOUR STRENGTH.’ The second is this, YOU SHALL LOVE YOUR NEIGHBOR AS YOURSELF.’ There is no other commandment greater than these.” Mark 12:28 – 34.

 

The scribe said to Him, “Right, Teacher; You have truly stated that HE IS ONE, AND THERE IS NO ONE ELSE BESIDES HIM; AND TO LOVE HIM WITH ALL THE HEART AND WITH ALL THE UNDERSTANDING AND WITH ALL THE STRENGTH, AND TO LOVE ONE’S NEIGHBOR AS HIMSELF, is much more than all burnt offerings and sacrifices. When Jesus saw that he had answered intelligently, He said to him, “You are not far from the kingdom of God.” After that, no one would venture to ask Him any more questions.”  MARK 12:28-34 (NASB)

 

 

Use your imagination for a moment. Imagine that Jesus Christ is walking up to your front door. He stands and looks at you and smiles. There is a love connection eye-to-eye between you and Jesus. You know that you can ask Him only one question. What will that question be? What are you going to ask Jesus Christ?

 

 

You would hope in asking this question that for once and for all, your hurts and anxieties would be taken away. You would hope you would receive an answer that you could base your whole life on. In a very real sense, it did happen to a scribe. He asks, “What is the greatest thing I can do to bring me happiness?”

 

 

Spiritually, a scribe usually represents the thoughts that come to us from the world. They are forms of thoughts not from the inspiration of God. Now, if you look at the outer appearance in all things, especially scripture—you just read the letter exactly the way it is and do not see what it means spiritually–that is a scribe. Jesus talked about the importance of spiritual interpretation—a spiritual interpretation goes beyond the word to the spirit of what is meant by that word.

 

 

On a literal level, the scribes copied down everything in the outer. They copied down each letter.   After the Jews returned from exile, they formed communities of scribes to preserve and circulate the scriptures. Before a scribe began his work each day, he would dip his pen in ink. At the top of the page he would write, “amalec.” He would then cross that out, hold his pen upright and say, “I am writing the Torah in the name of its sanctity and in the name of God in its sanctity.”

 

 

The scribe would read a sentence, repeat it aloud and then write it down. Every time he came to the name of God, he would say, “I am writing the name of God for the holiness of His name.” If he made an error in writing God’s name, he had to destroy the entire sheet of velum or papyrus he was using.

 

 

After the scribe finished copying a particular book, he would count every single word and the letters it contained. He would then check this tally with the count for the manuscript he was copying. He counted the number of times a particular word occurred in the book. And he noted the middle word in the middle of the page and compared that to the original text.

 

 

By making these careful checks in the outer, he hoped to avoid any mistakes that might come. So, needless to say, this was a detail-oriented person to say the least. He is the perfect person to ask the question and the perfect person to record the answer to the question. Also, this is a person who knows well all 713 Jewish commandments.

 

 

Well, our scribe talks to Jesus in the temple during Passover week and asks the question of Jesus, “What can each of us do right now to improve our lives, to increase our happiness?”

 
To answer this question, let’s look at Mark 12:28-34.

 

“And one of the scribes came up and heard them disputing with one another, and seeing that He answered them well, asked Him, ‘Which commandment is the first of all?’”

 

Now, this scribe was one of many. You can imagine there was a whole group there arguing with one another. He stopped as he was passing by because he was impressed with the way Jesus was answering the questions. So this scribe asked the question that was burning on his mind of this Holy Man. It was an intelligent question.

 

 

If you had 713 commandments in your mind that you knew well and tried to live by, you would wonder what is really important. Out of the 713 commandments, what should I do today to make my life better?   And, what about arguing? What is it when you argue inside of your mind? We have all done that. This was a very unusual scribe because he was questioning.

 

 

“Jesus answered, ‘The first is, ‘Hear, O Israel: The Lord our God, the Lord is one; and you shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your mind, and with all your strength.’”

 

 

Jesus said that there is one God, one presence, one power, omnipotent—the principle of oneness. And this principle is our spiritual consciousness and shows that we are in a state of an awareness inside of our mind, an awareness of God. “Hear” means to look deeper. So, if we do look deeper into our own spirituality, we will find that God is One with each of us ALL the time. When we are feeling down in our life, we will receive the same power and same love from the same God as when we’re in a high time in our life. The Lord isn’t a thousand different moods. The Lord is one at all times.

 

 

In God, love is the power that joins and binds the universe and everything in it. It is the inner quality that sees good everywhere and in everyone. God is love. Lord our God is within us, as the ruling awareness, creating each person’s spirituality. If we have a ruling thought in our head and if that ruling thought is God and the Presence of God and putting God first, then we have the Lord our God ruling our life.

 

 

The heart is our thoughts and feelings that have been stored inside of us. Our soul is more. Our soul is both our subconscious and conscious mind. Our soul is everything we are aware of at this present moment and all time. The mind is the co-creative inventor inside of us. It tells us the starting point of every act. Strength is our energy from God. the might, the capacity to accomplish.

 

 

This is all inside of us for the work of God. We are to love the activity of Christ on every level. The mind is the starting point of every act, thought or feeling with the energy from God. In other words, in everything in our life, put God first. Don’t even allow a fear thought, or a feeling that we don’t have what it takes, to be even be thought of. Always put God first. And if we put God first, we put God first in our mind, in our body, in our life. We are going to have a change in everything, including a change of heart, our consciousness.

 

 

“The second is this, ‘You shall love your neighbor as yourself.’ There is no other commandment greater than these.”

 

 

How should we love our neighbor? We should love our neighbor as ourself. If we do not love ourself, we can’t give our neighbor love. We have to love ourself because our body is the temple of the living Lord. If we love that activity inside of us and what it is doing in our life, then we can pass that on to our neighbor. If we are a channel for God’s love to flow, and we close that channel, how can the love flow? We have to choose to keep the channel wide open, and allow the love to flow.

 

 

What about your neighbor? This is not just talking about someone who lives next door to us.   It’s talking about people we’ve never met, across the continent. It’s talking about a  commitment to have that openness and to go the extra mile for every person who enters our life. It is talking about people that are like us and people very different from us. It is talking about people in our town and people in all the other towns and all different places of worship. When Jesus said to go the extra mile, He was never talking about an experience of walking around in a circle within our place of familiarity.

 

 

There’s a wonderful story of St. Francis of Assisi. He was terrified of leprosy. He was walking down a very narrow path one day and saw a very pale, ghostly white leper coming towards him.   His heart shrank back. He recoiled. He had all this fear come up inside of him. He started to shake and shudder because he was terrified of contamination from this loathsome disease.

 

He was ashamed of himself and his actions at that point. Then, he decided he would go the extra mile with God and allow God to love through him. He rallied and went with God then.

 

He ran up to the leper, put his arms around him and kissed his cheek. Then St. Francis of Assisi went on. A moment later he looked back and no one was there. Throughout his life, he was convinced that the leper was not really a leper but was Christ Himself whom he had met.

 

In Mark 12:32, our scribe answers. “And the scribe said to him, ‘You are right, Teacher; You have truly said that He is one, and there is no other but He; and to love Him with all the heart, and with all the understanding and with all the strength, and to love one’s neighbor as oneself, is much more than all whole burnt offerings and sacrifices.’”

 

 

We have here a scribe who sees that there is one power and that power is love. There is one law that counts in our ministry and in our life. It’s really not just what we teach, but how loving we each are daily. That is what it means to follow Jesus Christ, and go the extra mile.

 

 

The bottom line of Christianity is love. God is love. Love God, love yourself, love the people.   That’s it. That’s all there is. If that’s all we did here, it would be more than enough.

 

 

In Mark 12:34 we read: “And when Jesus saw that, he answered wisely, He said to him, ‘You are not far from the kingdom of God.’ And after that no one dared to ask Him any questions.”

 

 

Can we even imagine if Jesus Christ said to us that we were not far from the kingdom of God?   What an incredible compliment, perhaps the finest compliment that has ever been given.   The kingdom of God IS Christ and His  awareness. God is love. To have that love individualized inside of us is what we are here to achieve. It is the greatest activity a human can strive for.

 

 

Jesus could have said something that was much more complicated. He could have talked all day long about the 712 other commandments. He could have made it so difficult for us to grasp.   But we’re the ones who make religion so difficult for people because our human mind is a difficult place, and we think it has to be a difficult world. But it’s not. In reality it is very simple. And it is the way of happiness.

 

 

We have a choice in our life. We can live our life as an ordinary scribe who is a person who looks only to outer facts and constantly makes decisions about ourselves with the facts of the given moment, or we can decide to have a deeper, enlarged, inner view of life through the eyes of love.

 

 

It’s interesting. Jesus was talking with the disciples about the scribes right after this, and He gave His opinion. Now, Jesus was a teacher who called something exactly what it was.

 

 

In Mark 12:38-40, Jesus said, “Beware of the scribes, who like to go about in long robes, and to have salutations in the market places and the best seats in the synagogues and the places of honor at feasts, who devour widows’ houses and for a pretense make long prayers. They will receive the greater condemnation.”

 

You can know this Bible. You can live with it and sleep with it. But if you are not loving, you don’t have anything. It’s not what we know but what we demonstrate in our lives. We have to begin to demonstrate love. When love is made active in us, it spreads out.

 
.
You see, the love way is the way of the true prophet. The silent way is more powerful than the noisy way. Gandhi said, “If the crowd should ask an eye for an eye, all will be blind.” All people are blind who do not see through the perception of God’s love. Love is not blind.  Loves sees the good. The more loving we are, the more worth we are to our world, our business, our family and our friends.

After we are gone we are only going to be remembered for one thing—what we gave. We will be going to be remembered by the amount of love we gave to the world. People are never gone until they are forgotten, what an incredible legacy to leave behind.

Today we will experience love by expressing it. We are like the wanderer in search of love. We have journeyed to the most loving person in all the world. We have asked this person how to find love. The wise one speaks and assigns us three tasks. And when we complete these tasks, we’ll know the mystery of love. The three tasks assigned are as follows:

1. Love God, 2. Love yourself, 3. Love others as yourself. The spiritual goal is to become one of the most loving of individuals.

I ask you to follow God by making a commitment this morning to become ten times more loving in your life.

I do so and give my love…..

God love  Bless You!

 

 

 

He is Risen

Sunday is Resurrection Sunday or Easter as it is known around the world. There is nothing I can add to this scripture. For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten son, that whosoever believeth in Him shall not perish but have everlasting life. John 3:16

 

 

Read the scripture below as you meditate on the meaning of this day.

 

 

John 18-19:42 (NIV)

 

18 When he had finished praying, Jesus left with his disciples and crossed the Kidron Valley. On the other side there was a garden, and he and his disciples went into it. 2 Now Judas, who betrayed him, knew the place, because Jesus had often met there with his disciples. 3 So Judas came to the garden, guiding a detachment of soldiers and some officials from the chief priests and the Pharisees. They were carrying torches, lanterns and weapons.

 

 

4 Jesus, knowing all that was going to happen to him, went out and asked them, “Who is it you want?” 5 “Jesus of Nazareth,” they replied. “I am he,” Jesus said. (And Judas the traitor was standing there with them.) 6 When Jesus said, “I am he,” they drew back and fell to the ground.

 

 

7 Again he asked them, “Who is it you want?” “Jesus of Nazareth,” they said. 8 Jesus answered, “I told you that I am he. If you are looking for me, then let these men go.” 9 This happened so that the words he had spoken would be fulfilled: “I have not lost one of those you gave me.”

 

 

10 Then Simon Peter, who had a sword, drew it and struck the high priest’s servant, cutting off his right ear. (The servant’s name was Malchus.) 11 Jesus commanded Peter, “Put your sword away! Shall I not drink the cup the Father has given me?” 12 Then the detachment of soldiers with its commander and the Jewish officials arrested Jesus. They bound him 13 and brought him first to Annas, who was the father-in-law of Caiaphas, the high priest that year. 14 Caiaphas was the one who had advised the Jewish leaders that it would be good if one man died for the people.

 

 

15 Simon Peter and another disciple were following Jesus. Because this disciple was known to the high priest, he went with Jesus into the high priest’s courtyard, 16 but Peter had to wait outside at the door. The other disciple, who was known to the high priest, came back, spoke to the servant girl on duty there and brought Peter in.

 

 

17 “You aren’t one of this man’s disciples too, are you?” she asked Peter. He replied, “I am not.” 18 It was cold, and the servants and officials stood around a fire they had made to keep warm. Peter also was standing with them, warming himself.

 

 

19 Meanwhile, the high priest questioned Jesus about his disciples and his teaching. 20 “I have spoken openly to the world,” Jesus replied. “I always taught in synagogues or at the temple, where all the Jews come together. I said nothing in secret. 21 Why question me? Ask those who heard me. Surely they know what I said.” 22 When Jesus said this, one of the officials nearby slapped him in the face. “Is this the way you answer the high priest?” he demanded.

 

 

23 “If I said something wrong,” Jesus replied, “testify as to what is wrong. But if I spoke the truth, why did you strike me?” 24 Then Annas sent him bound to Caiaphas the high priest.

 

 

25 Meanwhile, Simon Peter was still standing there warming himself. So they asked him, “You aren’t one of his disciples too, are you?” He denied it, saying, “I am not.” 26 One of the high priest’s servants, a relative of the man whose ear Peter had cut off, challenged him, “Didn’t I see you with him in the garden?” 27 Again Peter denied it, and at that moment a rooster began to crow.

 

 

28 Then the Jewish leaders took Jesus from Caiaphas to the palace of the Roman governor. By now it was early morning, and to avoid ceremonial uncleanness they did not enter the palace, because they wanted to be able to eat the Passover. 29 So Pilate came out to them and asked, “What charges are you bringing against this man?”

 

 

30 “If he were not a criminal,” they replied, “we would not have handed him over to you.” 31 Pilate said, “Take him yourselves and judge him by your own law.” “But we have no right to execute anyone,” they objected. 32 This took place to fulfill what Jesus had said about the kind of death he was going to die.

 

 

33 Pilate then went back inside the palace, summoned Jesus and asked him, “Are you the king of the Jews?” 34 “Is that your own idea,” Jesus asked, “or did others talk to you about me?” 35 “Am I a Jew?” Pilate replied. “Your own people and chief priests handed you over to me. What is it you have done?” 36 Jesus said, “My kingdom is not of this world. If it were, my servants would fight to prevent my arrest by the Jewish leaders. But now my kingdom is from another place.”

 

 
37 “You are a king, then!” said Pilate. Jesus answered, “You say that I am a king. In fact, the reason I was born and came into the world is to testify to the truth. Everyone on the side of truth listens to me.

 

 

38 “What is truth?” retorted Pilate. With this he went out again to the Jews gathered there and said, “I find no basis for a charge against him. 39 But it is your custom for me to release to you one prisoner at the time of the Passover. Do you want me to release ‘the king of the Jews’?”
40 They shouted back, “No, not him! Give us Barabbas!” Now Barabbas had taken part in an uprising.

 

 

19 Then Pilate took Jesus and had him flogged. 20. The soldiers twisted together a crown of thorns and put it on his head. They clothed him in a purple robe and went up to him again and again, saying, “Hail, king of the Jews!” And they slapped him in the face.

 

 

4 Once more Pilate came out and said to the Jews gathered there, “Look, I am bringing him out to you to let you know that I find no basis for a charge against him.” 5 When Jesus came out wearing the crown of thorns and the purple robe, Pilate said to them, “Here is the man!” 6 As soon as the chief priests and their officials saw him, they shouted, “Crucify! Crucify!”

 

 

But Pilate answered, “You take him and crucify him. As for me, I find no basis for a charge against him.” 7 The Jewish leaders insisted, “We have a law, and according to that law he must die, because he claimed to be the Son of God.”

 

 

8 When Pilate heard this, he was even more afraid, 9 and he went back inside the palace. “Where do you come from?” he asked Jesus, but Jesus gave him no answer. 10 “Do you refuse to speak to me?” Pilate said. “Don’t you realize I have power either to free you or to crucify you?”

 

 

11 Jesus answered, “You would have no power over me if it were not given to you from above. Therefore the one who handed me over to you is guilty of a greater sin.” 12 From then on, Pilate tried to set Jesus free, but the Jewish leaders kept shouting, “If you let this man go, you are no friend of Caesar. Anyone who claims to be a king opposes Caesar.”

 

13 When Pilate heard this, he brought Jesus out and sat down on the judge’s seat at a place known as the Stone Pavement (which in Aramaic is Gabbatha). 14 It was the day of Preparation of the Passover; it was about noon. “Here is your king,” Pilate said to the Jews. 15 But they shouted, “Take him away! Take him away! Crucify him!

 

” “Shall I crucify your king?” Pilate asked. “We have no king but Caesar,” the chief priests answered. 16 Finally Pilate handed him over to them to be crucified. So the soldiers took charge of Jesus. 17 Carrying his own cross, he went out to the place of the Skull (which in Aramaic is called Golgotha). 18 There they crucified him, and with him two others—one on each side and Jesus in the middle.

 
19 Pilate had a notice prepared and fastened to the cross. It read: JESUS OF NAZARETH, THE KING OF THE JEWS. 20 Many of the Jews read this sign, for the place where Jesus was crucified was near the city, and the sign was written in Aramaic, Latin and Greek. 21 The chief priests of the Jews protested to Pilate, “Do not write ‘The King of the Jews,’ but that this man claimed to be king of the Jews.”
22 Pilate answered, “What I have written, I have written.”

 

 

23 When the soldiers crucified Jesus, they took his clothes, dividing them into four shares, one for each of them, with the undergarment remaining. This garment was seamless, woven in one piece from top to bottom. 24 “Let’s not tear it,” they said to one another. “Let’s decide by lot who will get it.” This happened that the scripture might be fulfilled that said, “They divided my clothes among them and cast lots for my garment.” So this is what the soldiers did.

 

 

25 Near the cross of Jesus stood his mother, his mother’s sister, Mary the wife of Clopas, and Mary Magdalene. 26 When Jesus saw his mother there, and the disciple whom he loved standing nearby, he said to her, “Woman,] here is your son,” 27 and to the disciple, “Here is your mother.” From that time on, this disciple took her into his home.

 

 

28 Later, knowing that everything had now been finished, and so that Scripture would be fulfilled, Jesus said, “I am thirsty.” 29 A jar of wine vinegar was there, so they soaked a sponge in it, put the sponge on a stalk of the hyssop plant, and lifted it to Jesus’ lips. 30 When he had received the drink, Jesus said, “It is finished.” With that, he bowed his head and gave up his spirit.

 

 

31 Now it was the day of Preparation, and the next day was to be a special Sabbath. Because the Jewish leaders did not want the bodies left on the crosses during the Sabbath, they asked Pilate to have the legs broken and the bodies taken down

 

 

32 The soldiers therefore came and broke the legs of the first man who had been crucified with Jesus, and then those of the other. 33 But when they came to Jesus and found that he was already dead, they did not break his legs. 34 Instead, one of the soldiers pierced Jesus’ side with a spear, bringing a sudden flow of blood and water.

 

 

35 The man who saw it has given testimony, and his testimony is true. He knows that he tells the truth, and he testifies so that you also may believe. 36 These things happened so that the scripture would be fulfilled: “Not one of his bones will be broken,” 37 and, as another scripture says, “They will look on the one they have pierced.”

 

 

38 Later, Joseph of Arimathea asked Pilate for the body of Jesus. Now Joseph was a disciple of Jesus, but secretly because he feared the Jewish leaders. With Pilate’s permission, he came and took the body away. 39 He was accompanied by Nicodemus, the man who earlier had visited Jesus at night. Nicodemus brought a mixture of myrrh and aloes, about seventy-five pounds.

 

 

40 Taking Jesus’ body, the two of them wrapped it, with the spices, in strips of linen. This was in accordance with Jewish burial customs. 41 At the place where Jesus was crucified, there was a garden, and in the garden a new tomb, in which no one had ever been laid. 42 Because it was the Jewish day of Preparation and since the tomb was nearby, they laid Jesus there.

 

 

20:1 Early on the first day of the week, while it was still dark, Mary Magdalene went to the tomb and saw that the stone had been removed from the entrance. 2 So she came running to Simon Peter and the other disciple, the one Jesus loved, and said, “They have taken the Lord out of the tomb, and we don’t know where they have put him!”

 

 

3 So Peter and the other disciple started for the tomb. 4 Both were running, but the other disciple outran Peter and reached the tomb first. 5 He bent over and looked in at the strips of linen lying there but did not go in. 6 Then Simon Peter came along behind him and went straight into the tomb. He saw the strips of linen lying there, 7 as well as the cloth that had been wrapped around Jesus’ head. The cloth was still lying in its place, separate from the linen.

 

 

8 Finally the other disciple, who had reached the tomb first, also went inside. He saw and believed. 9 (They still did not understand from Scripture that Jesus had to rise from the dead.) 10 Then the disciples went back to where they were staying.

 

 

11 Now Mary stood outside the tomb crying. As she wept, she bent over to look into the tomb 12 and saw two angels in white, seated where Jesus’ body had been, one at the head and the other at the foot.
13 They asked her, “Woman, why are you crying?” “They have taken my Lord away,” she said, “and I don’t know where they have put him.”

 

 

14 At this, she turned around and saw Jesus standing there, but she did not realize that it was Jesus. 15 He asked her, “Woman, why are you crying? Who is it you are looking for?”

 

 

Thinking he was the gardener, she said, “Sir, if you have carried him away, tell me where you have put him, and I will get him.”   16 Jesus said to her, “Mary.” She turned toward him and cried out in Aramaic, “Rabboni!” (which means “Teacher”).

 

 

17 Jesus said, “Do not hold on to me, for I have not yet ascended to the Father. Go instead to my brothers and tell them, ‘I am ascending to my Father and your Father, to my God and your God.’”

 
18 Mary Magdalene went to the disciples with the news: “I have seen the Lord!” And she told them that he had said these things to her.

 

 

19 On the evening of that first day of the week, when the disciples were together, with the doors locked for fear of the Jewish leaders, Jesus came and stood among them and said, “Peace be with you!” 20 After he said this, he showed them his hands and side. The disciples were overjoyed when they saw the Lord.

 

21 Again Jesus said, “Peace be with you! As the Father has sent me, I am sending you.” 22 And with that he breathed on them and said, “Receive the Holy Spirit. 23 If you forgive anyone’s sins, their sins are forgiven; if you do not forgive them, they are not forgiven.”

 

 

24 Now Thomas (also known as Didymus), one of the Twelve, was not with the disciples when Jesus came. 25 So the other disciples told him, “We have seen the Lord!”

 

 

But he said to them, “Unless I see the nail marks in his hands and put my finger where the nails were, and put my hand into his side, I will not believe.”

 

 

26 A week later his disciples were in the house again, and Thomas was with them. Though the doors were locked, Jesus came and stood among them and said, “Peace be with you!” 27 Then he said to Thomas, “Put your finger here; see my hands. Reach out your hand and put it into my side. Stop doubting and believe.”

 

 

28 Thomas said to him, “My Lord and my God!”

 

 

29 Then Jesus told him, “Because you have seen me, you have believed; blessed are those who have not seen and yet have believed.”

 
30 Jesus performed many other signs in the presence of his disciples, which are not recorded in this book. 31 But these are written that you may believe that Jesus is the Messiah, the Son of God, and that by believing you may have life in his name.

 

 

This is the Word of the Lord. Peace be with you! Amen

 

I pray you have a blessed Easter as you celebrate our risen Lord.

THE LAMP AND THE SALT

“In the Lord, put your trust.” Psalms 11:1

 

I want to share a story with you about the small town of Millersburg. Millersburg is a place where, even though it’s modern, time has stood still. If you were to take a scale and New York City was at the top of the scale, you would find Millersburg at the bottom of the scale. This small town is in Ohio, between Cleveland and Columbus and west of Pittsburgh, just to give you an idea of where it lies, a little NE of the center of the state, in Holmes County. This county is also home of many of the Amish who migrated to Ohio many years ago.

 

 

Right in the middle of Millersburg was the Post Office to the west of the town’s square. It was the central meeting place in Millersburg. The Postmaster, Mr. Denny, was a man who believed in animal rights. He never killed even a bug; he didn’t believe in hurting anything. So when a big beehive formed over the door, it didn’t bother Mr. Denny. It bothered everyone else in town, but Mr. Denny was at peace with the beehive being there. Every day as he went through the door, he would bless the bees. The other people would duck, crawl, and get through the door any way they could.

 

 

Over one long weekend, the beehive seemed to expand. It got so large that it blocked the whole top of doorway. Pretty soon, everyone in town was outside the Post Office looking through the door. They were on one side, the door with the beehive was in the middle, and the mail that they wanted to get was on the other side of the door.

 

 

They all started to complain. They called Mr. Denny and said, “Hey, we can’t get in to get our mail.”

 

 

Mr. Denny said, “Well, we don’t want to kill the bees.” So Mr. Denny had an idea. He would call a master bee keeper who could, somehow without hurting one single bee, move the bee hive and save the bees. This was quite a show. The whole town came out to see this master bee keeper work. It was quite a shock to the whole town when the master bee keeper came because considering the amount he was being paid, the people expected him to come with elaborate trucks pulling elaborate machinery, and be wearing a space suit with a screen mask.

 

 

Well, the beekeeper came up to the Post Office in a 1967 Chevrolet Bel Air. He had no equipment whatsoever. He was wearing a short-sleeved shirt—and not even wearing a glove. He had a ladder in his trunk. He opened the trunk, got out the ladder, and put it near the front door.   Everybody was just holding their breath.

 

 

He reached into the beehive with his naked hand and pulled out one single bee. When he pulled out this one single bee, he took it over to the 1967 Chevrolet Bel Air to an empty beehive that had been abandoned some time before. He put this one single bee inside the abandoned beehive, and then a miracle took place. The thousands of bees that were swarming up above the front door of the Post Office in Millersburg all came down from that beehive flew over and entered the hive in which he had put that one single bee. This was because the master beekeeper removed the queen bee. The worker bees followed the queen to their new home.

 

 

The whole theme of this story is that the queen bee is a “super bee”. You have the potential with God’s help to become a “super human,” like the queen bee and have others follow you.

 

 

We also have both queen thoughts and we have worker thoughts inside of us. Now, sometimes the queen thought is thinking about things like fear, anxiety, or anger. Sometimes the queen thought inside of us is thinking, “Oh, I’m no good. I couldn’t possibly do what I wish I could.” Whenever the queen thought is thinking that, the thousand worker thoughts follow along. No one thought EVER stands alone. They don’t even question. They just say, “Whatever you say, my queen and we will think this way.” The hive is our own mind and the life that we produce around it. We have all these thoughts swarming right now. Our human mind entertains 60,000 thoughts a day. The first thought is like a locomotive, and then it has a thousand train cars follow it, down the track in which you determine the direction. We think, “How do I change all of these thoughts? It’s so hard!” Change the queen thought, and watch the others follow naturally and easily.

 

 

When the queen type of thought accepts God as its ultimate leader or King, instantly the thousands of our “ worker thoughts” inside our own mind accepts God at the same time. When we shine this forth from our life a thousand people will see and follow. We will go from the hive of chaos and disease, into the hive of tranquility. We become the salt so of the earth, enhancing our and others’ thoughts and beliefs.

 

 

A large church had a big beautiful stained glass work. It represented the fields being white for the harvest. It was explained that the stained glass meant converts are ready to be converted.

 

 

The conversion experience happens inside, it happens daily inside of us if we are willing. Some days you have had a great faith where you could climb any mountain in your life, and other days you are at a low ebb and you feel like you couldn’t do anything. That is the time, (when you feel you can’t do anything), that you need to be converted again. It’s not up to the preacher, the priest, or the rabbi to do that. We are just a signpost pointing in the direction of God for you. It’s up to you to realize again and share the goodness of God with yourself. Then the spiritual transformation happens. As our devotion for Thursday and the accompanying music reveals – GOD RESTORES.

 

 

We must never lower Christianity to human weakness. We must raise human weakness to Christianity because God is the answer for all people. To rise to the very height inside of everyone’s self is what Christianity is about. To allow small thought to pull people down to a level of human weakness is no better than the dictator does in a small 3rd world country. God loves you and God constantly whispers in your ear sharing with you your potential. You have God-given goodness that is inside, and you can rise to what Jesus said you can become. The message of Jesus Christ is about your worth and your value as a child of God – that you ARE “the salt of the earth.”

 

 

Matthew 5, beginning with verse 13: “You are the salt of the earth; but if salt has lost its taste, how can its saltiness be restored? It is no longer good for anything, but is thrown out and trampled under-foot.”

 

 

In the days of Jesus, salt was a very expensive item. It was prized. What does salt do? It flavors. It enhances. It preserves. It makes things better. This is what you are to do, be such a shining example that you put flavor and vitality and zest into the whole office experience with your co-workers or in your marriage or with your family or wherever you are. You as a Christian are the salt.

 

 

Or, possibly, you consent, you surrender, to the spiritual seasoning of God to come through you. That’s empowering. You realize you do not have to do it yourself. You allow God to do it through you. The minute you surrender, the minute you allow God, it comes through and you do flavor your whole surroundings. You make everybody happier because you were there. You are the salt.

 

 

You are the light of the world. A city built on a hill cannot be hid.”

 

 

We just can’t hide what we are. We are on a hill. All people are looking at us. If we are spreading darkness and negativity, believe me, we are not hiding it. People see it. If we are spreading the light of God, people see that too. Even though they might never talk to you about it, even though they might never go to your church, you will make them better in their own religion, or in the dark moments of their lives, because of what you are.

 

 

“No one after lighting a lamp puts it under the bushel basket, but on the lamp stand”   Imagine you are a light. This body is a lamp stand. Where is the light? The light is your mind. It is your eyes and the way you perceive. It is the way you are thinking. Because of what you are thinking, you are radiating your being-ness to all around you. They know God is working in and through you.

 

 

“It gives light to all in the house.” ….  The house is the whole race of humankind. “In the same way, let your light shine before others, so that they may see your good works and give glory to your God in heaven.” (Emerson) Why? Because it is not you who is working—it is God working through you. People can see it; they realize it. You can’t hide it. There is no way you can hide it.

 

 

Like the electricity illuminating a light bulb, God will come through you.

 

 

Matthew 6:22: “The eye is the lamp of the body. So if your eye is healthy, your whole body will be full of light; but if your eye is unhealthy, your whole body will be full of darkness. If then the light in you is darkness, how great is the darkness?”

 

 

Our eye, our perception of life and the way we view our life now, is where the spiritual power is. The light can come from inside of us, and it is a spiritual experience when it comes. And we know we can be and feel that we are “the salt of the earth.”

 

 

I want to share a story with you about S.F.B. Morse. Morse was the inventor of the telegraph. In an interview, he was asked if when he was working on his great invention that changed humankind in that day, if he ever got to the point where he could not go any further; where he had tried every idea that could come to him and he didn’t know where to go or how to proceed. He said, “Oh yes, more than once.”

 

 

The interviewer said, “At such times, what did you do next?”

 

 

He said, “May I answer you in confidence sir? It is a matter of which the public knows nothing. I prayed for more light and light came. Years later, when the flattering honors came because of my invention, I never felt I deserved them. It came, not because I’m superior to others, but because God gave the gift through me.”

 

 

You can imagine the excitement as the inventor prepared to send his first message on his telegraph. What is the first message he is going to type that will go down for all history? This is the exact message: “What hath God brought about?”

 

 

Light is a very real thing that happens in our lives. We cannot change others initially. But, there is only one person in all the world you can ever really change, and that’s yourself. That’s true even in the congregation or spiritual group as in our Bethel, as we call our prayer and discussion group, (http://thespiritualfamily.chatango.com/?flash).  I can write these messages/ sermons, but I am only a signpost. You have to accept—the responsibility is on the listener just as it was in Jesus’ day.

 

 

As the salt of the earth and the lampstand, you can influence others by what you do and say. You may not meet them, or they might not ever discuss this with you, but you may profoundly change their life because of the way you are living yours. They see something in you that they want. That is the true act of the missionary to go out as a light in the world or as the salt in their world and flavor that whole world and make it better for everybody. Show them the better idea of themselves—show them what God can do through one human life. You will. You will succeed.

 

 

Follow Jesus the way any spiritual teacher you have ever had would want you to follow—by becoming the teachings and doing what He said you could do. Be the salt and let your lamp shine.

 

 

This has great power. It has wonderful, transforming, converting power inside of us. In the moment when we are facing a crisis in our lives, we can ask the question, “What would Jesus do?” “What would God do? What would God have me do?” “What is the loving thing to do?” Because God is love, we become love in action, that salt, that light of love and power in our lives.

 

 

“You have to “be about the Father’s business,” as Jesus once said. You are to be the “salt of the earth.”

 

 

Let us pray. In this moment, I pray that the special unique gifts of God open inside of you. I pray that you will funnel all the ideas of your life through your walk with God. I pray that the primary thoughts inside of your mind become thoughts of God, and all the lower thoughts follow God. I pray that you find well-being, balance, and harmony in your life because of the presence of God residing there. I pray that you become the salt of the earth and the lighthouse for all to see.

 

 

In the name and through the power of Jesus Christ . . . Amen.

The Tools to Oneness

“For in him all the fullness of God was pleased to dwell,” Colossians 1:19

 

 

 

 

I think most all of us believe in angels, don’t we? There are Angels among us. Some sing, some preach, and some listen. We are all angels with one wing; we can only fly by embracing one another. Each one of us has a message. And in a very special way, we give the best we know how.

 

 

On the island of Patmos, John wrote the book of Revelation. It is a book of symbols and a book of hope. It is a book of vision and dreams because he was a prisoner on the island. He would send messages containing symbols back to the mainland.

 

 

Sometimes we get caught up only in symbols, but behind that, rests spiritual truth, waiting for us to accept and move our dreams, our visions, our hopes, our desires, into perfect expression.

 

 

John writes in his book of Revelations, “Behold I put before you an open door which no one can shut.”   And it is God who opens that door for you and for me. We have to walk through that door that spiritual door; and that door can only be opened by God.

 

Sometimes we stand entrance of that door and wish we could go through it. We dream our dreams. We hold our visions. But something in us keeps us from stepping through. Maybe it is the limitations of our past. So we stand at the door until God can help us to heal that within us that may be keeping us from the spiritual side where our good awaits us all.  We must develop that tool to oneness.

 

 

A minister used to ponder, in his thoughts, about people who would call so often for help, for the same problem, over and over again. He got to the place where he had a key word or phrase that he would use. He would always end his time with people in a very profound way by saying, “You can begin again!”

 

God is a God of open doors of new beginnings. It’s not over, my friends, until you say it is. You can begin again right now, today. You have or can receive that tool.  You can make the decision to go forward in faith, having this mighty power direct and move you to that high calling in Christ Jesus.

 

 

I think of Paul when Timothy wanted to give up. He came to Paul and said, “I can’t handle this.”

 

Paul said to him, “Oh Timothy, neglect not the gift of God that is within you. Press on to that high calling in Christ Jesus.”

 

 

We all need to hear that message ourselves, don’t we? There are times when it’s very difficult, but hear the voice of God within you say, “Press on. Press on. There’s more. I am here to help you.”

 

 

Get up every morning and say, “The best years of my life are yet to be lived. Thank You, God.” It’s wonderful. So starting all over again calls for strong spiritual faith, spiritual courage, and a strong spiritual determination that will not quit.

 

 

There is something wanting to press out from us, express from us—God giving God’s self through us in the wonder of the world. I like to. So, let’s take the word “wonderful” and say to people, “Do you know that you are wonder-filled?”

 

 

You are wonder-filled; filled with wonder, mystery, and majesty. It’s wonderful, isn’t it. Take a deep breath and repeat those word to yourself – daily. You are a child of God, and you have many gifts from God that you have discovered, and many that still are waiting for you to unwrap. This will give you great courage to know that you are not alone that God is with you, awaiting you to walk through new open doors.

 

 

These are times when we accept those challenges of life with great excitement, and step out, not always knowing where our steps are going to take us. You know that with God’s guidance and direction, it will be good.

 

 

Here is a little poem that has always had a lot of influence. As we move on life’s journey we all have tools, don’t we?

 

 

Each is given a bag of tools,
A shapeless mass, a book of rules.
And each must make, ere life has flown
A stumbling block or a stepping stone.
Choices . . . decisions.

 

Grab your bag of tools.

 

 

All of us are on this journey, traveling from this path of the personal self to becoming aware and one with our Lord – that oneness that Jesus Christ urged us to follow. We stop thinking so much about ourselves, and we begin to engage ourselves in ministering to God’s family. We get excited about our life, and find that everything we do, everything we give, and everything we are is God’s gift to us, our tools. We must keep giving of ourselves to receive more.

 

 

Self-realization instructs us to relax in this wonderful presence in order to make the spiritual connection with God. The world is coming to realize the healing power responds to silence. We know this to be the most powerful energy in the world—silence—the silence of prayer.

 

 

Discover the reality of God’s presence—an almighty power with you NOW. For healing, know this presence and power of God as perfect life. Say aloud now, “The life of the Creator within me is perfect. And God can’t be sick, the perfection of the Creator is re-creating me now.” (Repeat to yourself but outloud often.)

 

 

Call healing forth by recognizing your oneness with God. This dialogue with your physical body brings forth the healing principles and the transformation of your life from illness to wholeness. Have a dialogue with God. It’s a wonderful spiritual experience. Each of us has to build our own capacity to receive from God. Healing is dependent upon a steadfast faith, true vision, and inner expectancy.

 

 

Prayer is our link with this healing power and process; it is the life of Jesus, based on prayer as a connectedness to God.

 

 

The same power that moved through Jesus Christ to perform healing miracles is the same power from God that is moving through you NOW. And that, my friends, is an awesome realization you might want to think about, There is only one presence and one power of God. This same power that moved through Jesus Christ to perform miracles is right now moving in, through, and over each one of us.

 

 

We begin to realize that this is the power of our connectedness, the power of our oneness. We need to remember, God is in God’s heavens and all is well with my world.

 

 

For guidance: Prayer is the power of illumination. It enlightens the mind and wakes it up.

 

Isaiah 58:8 “Then shall thy light break forth as the morning and thy healing shall spring forth speedily, and thy righteousness shall go before thee; and the glory of Jehovah shall be your reward.”

 

 

Jesus said, “Ye shall know the truth and the truth will set you free.”

 

 

Many people know about the Truth, but it remains just an intellectual process.

The intellect must be spiritualized. There is nothing wrong with the mind; it’s wonderful. It’s the explorer, the adventurer, the investigator. It goes out and finds all of these wonderful things for us. Then it comes back, and we have to take it to heart and translate it into wisdom, then move it to the spiritual.

 

 

So our intellect is a strong and a powerful agent, but it must never leave the nourishing power, or the heart, or it becomes hard, calloused, critical, cynical and sometimes cruel. Too much of our knowing is based upon outer things.

 

 

Many live a kind of surface life, knowing about things – but not ever understanding. We give new birth to ourselves, by KNOWING the truth, understanding the truth, and holding it in our heart.

 

 

There must be a Son of God activity,” Jesus said, “and the Spirit of God moved.” When that Spirit of God moves in you, – things happen. It gives voice to song. Glory to God’s word crowns you with joy.

 

 

So the path of prayer calls for the spiritually adventurous who are willing to step out on faith and trust the keeper of infinity. I believe prayer is the key to lifelong spiritual insight, for it is our return home. It is that journey (that tool) back to God.

 

 

A minister once said, “I often feel when people come to me in distress, that their real problem is simply that they are lonely and want to go home, back to God, back to that spiritual center which is all, knows all, and is all power.” That’s our loneliness. We yearn to return home again to that spiritual center of life, peace, joy, harmony, and abundance awaiting our rediscovery.

 

 

It was the call of the prodigal son. What a wonderful rejoining with the father that was. You know what going home is like, don’t you? It’s wonderful. In prayer, going home is special.

 

 

Following Jesus Christ opens the mind to the omnipotence and omnipresence of God—that everywhere present energy empowering love to have its perfect expression in us.

 

 

Spiritual prayer is a commitment to a faith that removes the mountains in our mind and heart. It takes that potential in us and makes it possible. With God all things are possible.

 

 

So we have this potential in us for goodness, for wonder, for mystery, for beauty, for sacredness. But it becomes possible as we give expression to the potential.

 

 

Faith and belief become an inner conviction. The compatible relationship between mind and heart begin to bring forth wonderful ideas/tools that we want on our spiritual journey. Jesus Christ is calling for each of us like He did 2,000 years ago: “Stretch forth thy hand; reach out into the world.”   Don’t get into this exclusive self, but inclusive. “Stretch forth thy hand and be healed. Take up your bed and walk. Arise, shine, for the light has come. Go in peace.”

 

 

Open the eyes that have been blinded with doubt, fear, hate, and bitterness. Heal the worry thoughts and lift them up into the light of God. Give them to the light. “Take my burden. My yoke is light.”

 

 

Just know that God’s Spirit, is inviting each, and all of us, to bring our present difficulties to the light. And in the light there is no darkness.

 

 

“If thine eye be single, the whole body shall be filled with light, and the crooked places made straight.” Those places where we have gone back and forth, not knowing which way we’re going, are part of the preparation for the Christ mind to be manifest in us.

 

 

We are called to do a great spiritual work, friends. Remember, all of us have direct connections to God. We have three avenues through which we function and operate: thought, desire, and action; we have our tools.

 

 

The most far reaching in its effect is the power of thought. Thought is the parent of action. It gives birth to action and movement. The guiding light of God will bring its fulfilling plan and purpose, and we shall have our heart’s desires.

 

 

The time will come when there will only be something more to  KNOW.

 

 

It is something to know about ourselves, that we have been unwilling (for one reason or another) to know yet. But when we spiritually can deal with it, face it; it becomes as natural as breathing.

 

 

There is something we need to know about ourselves. What is it? What is it that we don’t want to know about us that is standing in our way?

 

 

There is just something more to know—to know God’s love, power, peace, and joy.

 

 

In God mind there is only the perfect image of God in which we were created. We take hold of this as we understand – we must simply accept.

 

 

There is something in us to know. When we know it, we can accept it and love it . . . “I will not leave thee until thou blesses me.” Jacob said to the angel, “I will not leave thee until thou blesses me.”

 

 

I oftentimes think the things we attach to our lives—the hurt, pain, grief, and sorrow are asking us to bless them so they can leave us. I will not leave thee without your blessing.

 

 

So, whatever the pain might be, whatever the hurt, sorrow or disappointment, bless it so it does not have to go unhealed. This is one of your tools!

 

 

Let’s all take some time at the end of this message to use the tool to be quiet and still in spiritual prayer.

 

 

“How do I know God is here?” I know because I feel peace. So it is — my prayer is that you can feel this peace that passes understanding, and in that peace, be healed. That is another tool.

 

 

In the name and through the power of Him that is love, in the name and through the power of Jesus Christ, accept your healing.

 

 

God bless you as you continue to use your tools on that eternal path of the soul, accepting every good and perfect gift from God.

 

 

 

 

In the name and through the power of Him that is love, in the name and through the power of Jesus Christ, accept your healing, that healing spiritually, emotionally, and physically. Amen

With a Song in My Heart

A new heart I will give you, and a new spirit I will put within you.” Ezekiel 36:26

“I waited patiently for the Lord; he inclined to me and heard my cry. He drew me up from the desolate pit, out of the miry bog, and set my feet upon a rock, making my steps secure. He put a new song in my mouth, a song of praise to our God . . . You have multiplied, O Lord my God, your wondrous deeds and your thoughts toward us; none can compare with you . . . Then I said, ‘Here I am; in the scroll of the book it is written of me, I delight to do your will, O my God; your law is within my heart’” [Psalm 40:1-3, 5, 7-8].

Let’s think a few minutes about living from our heart. Oh, I don’t mean about following blind emotions or “if it feels good, do it.” Not talking about the jealous, sentimental, mushy, puppy love type of heart living. I am talking about living in spiritual love, strength, empathy, caring, having courage, forgiveness in your heart, being non-judgmental, with a clarity of thought and purpose. Wow! Now that was a mouth full.  You may want to scan that again.

What does that mean – “he will give me a new heart, a new spirit because he has heard my cry and drew me up from the desolate pit, the miry bog and put a song in my heart?” …. Ever been in that state? I have. I have been emotionally in the pits, and I bet you have too. I imagine everyone has. But what does that mean – that “He has put a new spirit within you?” I think it means that our emotions are able to change and changed in either direction – positive – to negative or negative to positive. The emotions grow out of our predominately held thoughts and beliefs—our persistently held attitudes. The emotions are actually seated lower than the heart—in the pit of the stomach if you will excuse that expression.

One aspect of emotions that we must realize is that WE ARE IN TOTAL CONTROL OF THEM. Nothing or nobody “makes” us have a specific emotion. We choose to “feel” the way we do. When I teach Anger Mgmt. I ask the students when they disagree that nobody makes them mad or happy, “If I spit in your face, does that make you angry?” Of course, they all say yes with a few adjectives thrown in. I reply, “No, I made you wet; you chose to be angry.”

And then we have to be honest and admit that we are angry or in the pits or happy. We must be honest about that emotion in order to deal with it. You have to acknowledge your emotions and deal with them appropriately when they come up. Don’t cover up and deny your emotion because it is written all over your face.

Then, if you find that these emotions have been destructive, you need to take some time looking at the thoughts and beliefs and attitudes that spawned them in the first place. Maybe you are going to have to make a correction in that area.

This morning we focused on Psalm 40 as one of our scriptures and it focuses on “a new song.” Here is the ending – “I delight to do your will, O my God, your law is within my heart.” Each of us has a song of the heart. It is what we are about. We need to discover it, sing it, and live it, with all our being.

This song is who we are; it’s not about singing somebody else’s song, no matter how wonderful it might be. It is not about dancing to someone else’s tune. It is about finding and singing your own song, telling your own story, and dancing your own dance.

When we were first conceived our “story, our song, our dance” was already within us, held by God but hidden from us. We had to grow into it – accept it and live with the beauty of the dance – the truth of your message, your story.

Each song, each dance, each story is different. Do you remember Thoreau’s words: “If a man does not keep pace with his companions, perhaps it is because he hears a different drummer. Let him step to the music which he hears, however measured or far away.” That is probably wghere “He marches to a different drummer” phrase came from.

Whatever beat you march to, or tune you dance to, or song you sing, let it be yours. Let the music of your life be from your heart—the higher heart, the Christ within you. And allow others the freedom to sing their songs, no matter how out of tune with your ear or syncopated in rhythm. Give them that freedom that you have.

Now, I do not mean that we have to condone wrong-doing or misanthropic actions or spiritual directions that are so opposed to yours. I am talking just about their personality, their song, their story. Accept them and appreciate them as living souls. We are each created by God. Love others and appreciate them without exception, without trying to make them be like you, or sing your song, or play in your band, under your direction.  Remember Jesus said, “And love your neighbors as yourself.”  Matthew 22:39; Mark 12:31; Luke 10:27

As each of us was given a path, a story, a song, we must remember from where that song came. It came from God at conception. And I feel strongly, as a Christian, that our story and our emotions are shaped and controlled by God and Jesus Christ.

I also believe that sometimes we allow our song to become out of tune. We worry; we fill ourselves with anxiety for amazing reasons. As I said before, we choose to do this (unknowingly of course).
This is not God within us; this is letting Satan grab us and push us downward into a spiral that leads to feelings of unworthiness, no self esteem, hopelessness, helplessness. Satan loves us when we are in that mode. He then has total control of us.

Here is what we must focus on – we must know that our Lord cares for us as he does the tulip and the sparrow and the lost lamb (we are the lost lamb). We must cry out to the Lord as in Psalm 40 and know that – ; “he inclined to me and heard my cry. He drew me up from the desolate pit, out of the miry bog, and set my feet upon a rock, making my steps secure. He put a new song in my mouth, a song of praise to our God.”

Oh my, what a wonderful thought. Each time we feel ourselves falling, we know that God is lifting us out of that desolate pit, that miry bog.

What does it require of us, though – as we are being pulled under? It only requires us to keep our focus on the Truth and to trust the Truth. Reading and living the Holy Bible on a daily basis, will keep our feet on that solid rock, secure, and will put that song in our hearts. His wondrous deeds and His thoughts are for you to grasp and hold on to. Your song will never be out of tune.

There are three important ideas about living your song, dancing your dance:
:

Clarity

Commitment

Cooperation

If you have these three items working in your life, you will have a magnificent life. And if any of these is missing, something is missing from your life and you are not living up to your full potential as an authentic, actualized, loving, whole person within the community of humankind.

What is your song of the heart? Open your heart and let God in to keep you focused and open to the Truth of your song. Never take your eyes off the path you are walking. Know it and walk it. Have that clarity that can only come from God.

Here are two stories that illustrate the idea of commitment: One man sang his own unique song and the other didn’t.

“ Tim wanted to be an architect. He took mechanical drawing in high school. He was good at it.

During his senior year in high school he studied architecture. He was one of the best in the class. He wanted to go to Georgetown University, which has a very fine engineering school with pretty high academic standards.

His high school guidance counselor told him he was too weak in mathematics to go there. This young man’s parents had never been to college, but they wanted him to have the opportunity, so they saved money for him and gave him a choice. He could go to college or he could have a brand new car. Because that guidance counselor told him he couldn’t make it at Georgetown University, he decided not to sing his song. The day after graduation, he had a brand new shiny car. He was proud of that.

Today, twenty-five years after graduation, that car sits rusting and decaying in a scrap heap, and so does his vision.”

“Brian is another story. His family was dirt poor. Brian’s father died when Brian was young. His mother did the best she could. Brian’s song was to be a lawyer, but there was no money to go to college, not even a state school. So he went into the service and served in Vietnam. Four years later, he got a part-time job working in the inner city, and he went to college on a GI bill. He was a “C” student. His grades weren’t really good enough for law school, but he wanted to live his vision with all his heart, and he did.

He applied to dozens of law schools at considerable expense, and every one of them turned him down, except for one. They said to him, “You don’t really have the grades to get into law school, but because you worked your way through college and you helped kids in the inner city, we think there is something about you that deserves a second look. We have a summer remedial program. If you take the program and successfully complete it, we’ll let you into law school in the fall.”

He did it. He struggled. He made it into law school by the skin of his teeth. When he graduated from law school, he did so with honors.

Today, he is married with a great wife and two gorgeous children. He put his wife through college (nobody in her family had ever been through college); he put his younger brother through college. He’s in his mid-forties now.

He only has to work when he wants to—as much or as little as he likes. He lives in a beautiful home, and is happy and satisfied.

He once confessed that he knew he had just average intelligence, but he was committed to living his vision. He did that, and to this day, he reads at least one chapter in the Bible and a positive thinking, self-development book, every night”

Brian sings his own song and so can you. First step – clarity, knowing your song. You may have to pray over that if you do not know your song yet. But your song is there; I think you may know it. Then be sure to focus and keep it in the clearness of your mind.

You and God are the only ones who know what your song is. You can keep it in focus through prayer, meditation, connecting with God through His word – The Bible.

The second idea is commitment. We must be totally committed to our song/our story/our walk. Remember that Jesus knew His song of the heart and had total commitment to it. While being tortured and crucified, he asked His Father to forgive us because we did not know what we were doing. As He was taking His last, painful breath on the cross, He was still teaching His lessons on perfect love, positive living, mercy; and he was sharing His last ounce of strength. On the Cross, as He was taking His last breaths, He was teaching us some of His most powerful lessons in life.

Then in a final gasp, “Father, into Thy hands I commit my spirit.” His entire life was committed to His story/His purpose to be our spiritual leader and example. “He was so committed to that purpose that he could look death in the eye and not back up. So often, he could have just turned and walked away, but He did not. That is total commitment.

In Proverbs 16:3, we read, “Commit your work to the Lord, and your plans will be established.”

If you are at a place in your life where you are frustrated because you don’t really know your song of your heart, then now is the time to make a commitment to discover it again. Now is the time, no matter what your age, to discover your song.

Remember, God is not holding you back from receiving His message. Let God guide you right back to your vision, your song. Go to God

“The point is, if you have a song of your heart and you are committed to it, then you will have the sweetest, most precious, most wonderful experience known to man or woman.”

And the final point is cooperation. In the 133rd Psalm, we read: “How very good and pleasant it is when kindred live together in unity! It is like the precious oil on the head . . . it is like the dew of Hermon, which falls on the mountains of Zion. For there the Lord ordained His blessing, life forevermore.” [Psalm 133:1-3]

We need not sing alone. Singing in harmony and being accompanied by our fellow Christians and kindred spirits can uplift us and support us. We all need that. We are not meant to “Walk Alone.” Look upon your song/your story as a wonderful musical with an orchestra. It is your orchestra with each section in harmony and voices of perfect pitch to sing with you. That is dwelling together in God’s love, cooperating with our fellow human beings.

There is the reason for churches and spiritual gatherings. What one heart cannot bear alone, 100 hearts beating together can. Our Spiritual Family Prayer Room is just that. Our songs are in perfect harmony as we share together and support one another while praying for so many. If you are not familiar with us, please feel free to visit us on line at http://thespiritualfamily.chatango.com/ and then visit a church that you can feel in unity with where the fellowship is in cooperation with one another.

Today, we touched upon the most important topic I know of: the song of your heart. There were three key ideas:

Clarity—be clear and concise in your song.

Commitment—be committed to your song and if you don’t know it,
be committed to finding it.

Cooperation—cooperate with others in singing your song and in helping
them sing theirs.

Do you remember that attorney named Brian I talked about? I said he
was a “C” student. It dawned on me that he was,
indeed, a “C” student where it counted.

He had the three C’s—clarity, commitment, and cooperation.

That has made the difference in his life and it can make a difference in your life.

That’s the way to way to fulfillment—to sing the song of your heart and live your vision, your story.

To end where we begin:

This morning we focused on Psalm 40 as one of our scriptures and it focuses on “a new song.” Here is the ending – “I delight to do your will, O my God, your law is within my heart.”

Each of us has a song of the heart. It is what we are about. We need to discover it, sing it, and live it, with all our being.

God bless you!