Verse of the Day – What difference does it make if we praise him?

You alone are the LORD. You made the heavens, even the highest
heavens, and all their starry host, the earth and all that is on
it, the seas and all that is in them. You give life to everything,
and the multitudes of heaven worship you.
— Nehemiah 9:6

Our praise is pretty irrelevant to everyone and everything but
us, those closest to us, and amazingly to God. In a universe so
vast, so much bigger than Nehemiah could have imagined, what is our
small voice and our song of praise? The billions of stars and
innumerable creatures of the immense seas all cry out that our
Creator is LORD. God will receive the worship of the angels and all
the heavenly beings. What difference does it make if we praise him?
To the universe, to be blunt, it doesn’t matter. But it does to us!
It matters even more to the LORD, who longs to be our Father and
wants to bring us into relationship with himself.

Holy and amazing God, you alone are Lord — Lord of all creation
and Lord of my life. You are praised by all you have made. Your
works cry out and declare your creative genius and your loving
kindness. Father, I want to add my heartfelt praise to the chorus
of creation, the voices of the angels, and the praise of many who
have come before me. You are truly worthy to be praised. I gladly
offer you my words, my songs, my heart, and my life. In Jesus’
name. Amen.

Day 83: Being a Warrior « ASPIRE. MOTIVATE. SUCCEED.

Day 83: Being a Warrior « ASPIRE. MOTIVATE. SUCCEED..

Wonderful message of encouragement. There are many out in the world who go through these feelings of depression. God sees us all, and knows what we need. The main thing we need is to “Not Give Up”. He knows how much we can bear. May we who are honored to follow Jesus, live our lives in service to others. We never know who needs the arms of Jesus through our human arms.


“My cup overflows with blessings.”

Psalm 23:5 NLT

Is an overflowing cup full?


The wine reaches the rim and then tumbles over the edge.

The goblet is not large enough to contain the quantity.

According to David, our hearts are not large enough to contain the blessings that God wants to give.

He pours and pours until they literally flow over the edge and down on the table.

The last thing we need to worry about is not having enough.

Our cup overflows with blessings.

~ Max Lucado

Labor of Love

Today, as the U.S. celebrates Labor Day, it occurs to me that God probably does not get to take the day off and have a bar-b-Que.  I figure he actually is extra busy taking care of all the partying idiots out there who are celebrating having the day off from their labor.

Whether it took Him six days in our concept of time, or His, it still took him six days.  I suppose He could have created existence in no time, but he didn’t.  He took His time, and labored over every detail, every nuance, down to the shape of sub-atomic particles.  Then made sure it all worked.  And, now, there are still an infinite number of variables to be considered in an infinite number of non-stop occurrences.  For us as Christians, we see His constant hand in our lives.  He shows us he is a loving, caring, involved Creator.  I don’t think there is any randomness.  There could be some auto-piloting happening, but I doubt if it is a lot, if any.

Of course, I don’t know these things, but they feel right and seem logical.  And, they sound to me like a great deal of labor.  So, hopefully, He pushes the pause button on our time stream, and gets to enjoy the holiday too.


Daily Promises – August 8 – Jesus will cleanse us from all sin

1 John 1:7 KJV
7 But if we walk in the light, as he is in the light, we have fellowship one with another, and the blood of Jesus Christ his Son cleanseth us from all sin.

Promise #220: If you walk in the light, the blood of My Son Jesus will cleanse you from all sin.

Jesus is called the Light of the World. In Him is no darkness, only brilliant, glorious light. The good news of the gospel is that when we receive the free gift of God, which is the life of His own Son, we are completely cleansed from all unrighteousness and forgiven from all our sin. We have become children of the light because we are now joined completely into the holy life of Jesus. Romans 8:1 says because of this exchange, there is therefore now no condemnation for us.

Our adversary the devil is called the accuser of the brethren. His aim is to continually bring accusations against us that would somehow cause us to feel ashamed and run and hide from God. When you hear these accusing voices, declare the finished work of the blood of Jesus over your life for it is the cleansing power of Jesus’ blood that keeps us walking in the light!

We have no need to hide in shame from God. Jesus Christ has secured our place in His Father’s heart and His blood has covered our past sins, our present sins and our future sins. You can rest in the finished work of Jesus Christ. When He cried it is finished! on the cross, He meant it. Does this mean that we can go on living  a sinful life? God forbid! However, we can rest assured that if we walk in the light as Jesus is in the light, His blood cleanses us from ALL sin.
Photo by Barry Adams

Daily Promises – August 7 – We can BOLDLY approach God

Ephesians 3:12 KJV
12 In whom we have boldness and access with confidence by the faith of him.

Promise #219: Through faith in Christ, you can boldly approach Me with confidence.

The NIV Bible says Ephesians 3:12 in this way… ‘In him and through faith in him we may approach God with freedom and confidence.’ What a glorious promise! Through our new life in Jesus Christ, we have complete and unrestricted access to our heavenly Father. Though angels bow down in reverence to Almighty God, we can call Him our Abba. Though He holds the earth in the palm of His hand, He calls us His little ones.

Praise God for giving us an amazing salvation through our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ! In the great exchange that happened at the cross, Jesus exchanged His life for our life. We no longer live apart from Christ (Galatians 2:20), so being in Christ, we have full access to our Father just like Jesus does. As a matter of fact, in Colossians 3, Paul says that we actually are hid with Christ in God, seated in the heavens!

As a father, I would be disappointed if I felt that my children were afraid to come into my presence. They are my children after all! They are welcome any time, night or day! If we as dads are intended to be a shadow of the perfect Father (Matthew 5:48), how much more does He desire that we come boldly into His throne room with freedom and confidence?

May each one of us be encouraged today to come into our Papa’s presence with a new boldness. Not because of anything that we have done, but because our big brother, Jesus Christ, the Lamb slain before the foundation of the world, has made the way for us to approach God with a confident expectation that He will receive us and put us on His lap, day or night.

~ Barry Adams

Daily Promises – August 6 – God has numbered each hair on our head

By Barry Adams

Matthew 10:30 KJV
30 But the very hairs of your head are all numbered.

Promise #218: I have even numbered each hair on your head.

The entire context of this promise can be found in Matthew 10:29-31
29Are not two sparrows sold for a penny? Yet not one of them will fall to the ground apart from the will of your Father. 30And even the very hairs of your head are all numbered. 31So don’t be afraid; you are worth more than many sparrows. NIV Bible

In Matthew 10, Jesus is commissioning His disciples to go out into the world to proclaim the good news of the kingdom. Heal the sick, cast out devils and freely give what you freely receive. In the midst of His charge to go, Jesus does talk about the reality that they will encounter opposition to this message. There will even be those who will want to kill them for what they represent. But all the while, Jesus is encouraging them not to be afraid.

He goes on to tell them that though sparrows are insignificant in the eyes of men, Father God always keeps a watchful eye on them. Jesus encourages His disciples that they are worth more than many sparrows, so if God watches over the birds, He will watch over them! The source of much of worry and anxiety is fear. Fear is rooted in a feeling that we are on our own and we have to try and manage life by ourselves.

Jesus encourages us to not fear, but be reminded that we are not on our own, that we have a heavenly Father who loves us and is in control of our lives. He even has taken the time to number each one of the hairs on our heads! What detail! What involvement in our lives! We have nothing to fear when the God of the universe is for us and so intimately involved in our lives.

Knowing the Father’s love for us will not necessarily shield us from heartache, pain and suffering because Jesus did tell us that in the world we will have trouble. However, in the midst of all our struggles, He does promise to cast out all fear from our hearts! May each one of us go deeper into our Father’s love today, knowing that our worth to Him is far more than many sparrows and that He has taken the time to number each one of the hairs on our head.

Second Birth

God is being patient with you . . . He wants all people to change their hearts and lives.”  2 Peter 3:9

In many ways your new birth is like your first: In your new birth God provides what you need; someone else feels the pain, and someone else does the work. And just as parents are patient with their newborn, so God is patient with you. But there is one difference. The first time you had no choice about being born; this time you do.

The power is God’s.

The effort is God’s.

The pain is God’s.

But the choice is yours.

~ Max Lucado

Daily Promises – July 23

Isaiah 58:7-8 KJV
7 Is it not to deal thy bread to the hungry, and that thou bring the poor that are cast out to thy house? when thou seest the naked, that thou cover him; and that thou hide not thyself from thine own flesh? 8 Then shall thy light break forth as the morning, and thine health shall spring forth speedily: and thy righteousness shall go before thee; the glory of the LORD shall be thy reward.

Promise: If you share with the needy, My glory will guard your back.
God’s heart is always for the poor and those who are in need. It is simply a foundational part of the heart of God. He protects the widows and the orphans. He says that the poor of this world are called to inherit the riches of His everlasting kingdom.

In this promise, God says that if we look after the needs of the poor and our own family, there are many benefits that will come our way. Our light will break forth like the dawn, healing will quickly appear, righteousness will go before us, and the glory of the Lord will be our rear guard. (NIV) I love how the NLT Bible says verse 8… 8 “Then your salvation will come like the dawn, and your wounds will quickly heal. Your godliness will lead you forward, and the glory of the Lord will protect you from behind. (NLT)

God’s heart is always for the underdog. He is always thinking of those who are need. When we really connect to the heart of our God and Father, we will share His concern for those around us. The stronger His heart beat becomes in us, the more we will share what we have with others and the more His glory will guard our back. May each one of us become more aware of the immediate needs of those around us today.
Photo by Barry Adams

Never Underestimate the Power of Your Actions

One day, when I was a freshman in high school, I saw a kid from my class as I was walking home from school.

    His name was Kyle.

    It looked like he was carrying all of his books.

    I thought to myself, ‘Why would anyone bring home all his books on a Friday?

    He must really be a nerd.

    I had quite a weekend planned (parties and a football game with my friends), so I shrugged my shoulders and went on.

    As I was walking, I saw a bunch of kids running toward him.
    They ran at him, knocking all his books out of his arms and tripping him so he landed in the dirt.

    His glasses went flying, and I saw them land in the grass about ten feet from him.

    He looked up and I saw this terrible sadness in his eyes .

    My heart went out to him. So, I jogged over to him as he crawled around looking for his glasses, and I saw a tear in his eye.

    As I handed him his glasses, I said, “Those guys are jerks”.
    He looked at me and said, “Hey thanks!” There was a big smile on his face.
    It was one of those smiles that showed real gratitude. I helped him pick up his books, and asked him where he lived.   As it turned out, he lived near me, so I asked him why I had never seen him before. He said he had gone to private school before now.

    I would have never hung out with a private school kid before.

    We talked all the way home, and I carried some of his books. He turned out to be a pretty cool kid.

    I asked him if he wanted to play a little football with me an my friends.
    He said yes.

    We hung out all weekend and the more I got to know Kyle, the more I liked him, and my friends thought the same of him.

    Monday morning came, and there was Kyle with the huge stack of books again.

    I stopped him and said, ‘Boy, you are gonna really build some serious muscles with this pile of books everyday!

    He just laughed and handed me half the books.

   Over the next four years, Kyle and I became best friends.

    When we were seniors we began to think about college.

    Kyle decided on Georgetown, and I was going to Duke. I knew that we would always be friends, that the miles would never be a problem. He was going to be a doctor, and I was going for a business degree on a football scholarship. I teased him all the time about being a nerd.

    Kyle was valedictorian of our class. He had to prepare a speech for graduation. I was so glad it wasn’t me having to get up there and speak .

    On graduation day, I saw Kyle.  He looked great.

    He was one of those guys that really found himself during high school.

  He filled out and actually looked good in glasses. He had more dates than I had and all the girls loved him. Boy, sometimes I was jealous!

    Today was one of those days. I could see that he was nervous about his speech. So, I smacked him on the back and said, “Hey, big guy, you’ll be great!’

   He looked at me with one of those looks (the really grateful one) and smiled. ” Thanks,” he said.

    As he started his speech, he cleared his throat, and began. “Graduation is a time to thank those who helped you make it through those tough years. Your parents, your teachers, your siblings, maybe a coach, but mostly your friends.
I am here to tell all of you that being a friend to someone is the best gift you can give them. I am going to tell you a story”.

I just looked at my friend with disbelief as he told the first day we met. He had planned to kill himself over the weekend. He talked of how he had cleaned out his locker so his Mom wouldn’t have to do it later and was carrying his stuff home.

He looked hard at me and gave me a little smile. “Thankfully, I was saved. My friend saved me from doing the unspeakable.”

I heard the gasp go through the crowd as this handsome, popular boy told us all about his weakest moment. I saw his Mom and dad looking at me and smiling that same grateful smile. Not until that moment did I realize it’s depth.

 Never underestimate the power of your actions.