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Bear With Me….

Bear With Me....

I really want to do this site right and make it all God has called for it to be. So, I’m going to be working towards revamping some things. I’ll do my best to post content as things are underway, just to get something out of there. I ask that you stick with me and…. GET EXCITED!!!

Be blessed.
Hal

PS the notion of being “under construction”… now, that’ll preach!

Back to Basics!

I sit here, hands on computer, mind on Christ, eyes on screen and I’m feeling…impulsive! Or, pensive. Or, anxious. Or… So, here’s the thing, I haven’t updated this blog in over a year. I think about it almost daily; I frequent the page every couple months, yet, I lack in contributing to its function. Why?

That’s when it hit me. I’ve been waiting for something I’ll never obtain: perfection! I’ve been waiting for the perfect moment to write the perfect post consisting of all the perfect metaphors and phrasing and “on-time” scriptures. Only to realize that the perfect moment only exists when when God’s timing and my actions collide. I’ve gone back and forth on how to reinvent the blog. How to get the message to the people. How to do something that’s fresh and new and exciting. I’ve agonized. Seriously. And, where has it gotten me? Absolutely nowhere. Until now…

Tonight, I’ve stopped searching for perfection. Tonight, I’ve stopped disregarding what God has been telling me. Tonight, I’ve stopped ignoring that still small voice. Because, I’ve realized, the only way to get started is to start. Isn’t that way faith is?

Maybe people will read. Maybe they won’t. But, to quote a really amazing movie, “If you build it, they will come.” So, while I can’t worry if people will read and get back on this journey with me, I do pray that I won’t lose focus, faith or motivation and that those that come will be encouraged and inspired..to just start!

Falling Plates

This is a video from fallingplates.com… Maybe you’ve seen it, maybe you’re like me and you want to keep seeing it.. Either way, it needs no introduction…

 

 

Oh, how grateful I am for His Love!

Clearly Stated

The following is a statement released by Ben Stein this morning. I felt it NECESSARY to share and pass along. No Further introduction needed.. he says it all.

Apparently the White House referred to Christmas Trees as “Holiday Trees” for the first time this year which prompted CBS presenter, Ben Stein, to present this piece which I would like to share with you. I think it applies just as much to many countries as it does to America . . .

The following was written by Ben Stein and recited by him on CBS Sunday Morning Commentary.

My confession:

I am a Jew, and every single one of my ancestors was Jewish. And it does not bother me even a little bit when people call those beautiful lit up, bejewelled trees, Christmas trees. I don’t feel threatened. I don’t feel discriminated against. That’s what they are, Christmas trees.

It doesn’t bother me a bit when people say, “Merry Christmas” to me. I don’t think they are slighting me or getting ready to put me in a ghetto. In fact, I kind of like it. It shows that we are all brothers and sisters celebrating this happy time of year. It doesn’t bother me at all that there is a manger scene on display at a key intersection near my beach house in Malibu. If people want a crib, it’s just as fine with me as is the Menorah a few hundred yards away.

I don’t like getting pushed around for being a Jew, and I don’t think Christians like getting pushed around for being Christians. I think people who believe in God are sick and tired of getting pushed around, period. I have no idea where the concept came from, that America is an explicitly atheist country. I can’t find it in the Constitution and I don’t like it being shoved down my throat.

Or maybe I can put it another way: where did the idea come from that we should worship celebrities and we aren’t allowed to worship God? I guess that’s a sign that I’m getting old, too. But there are a lot of us who are wondering where these celebrities came from and where the America we knew went to.

In light of the many jokes we send to one another for a laugh, this is a little different: This is not intended to be a joke; it’s not funny, it’s intended to get you thinking.

Billy Graham’s daughter was interviewed on the Early Show and Jane Clayson asked her: “How could God let something like this happen?” (regarding Hurricane Katrina). Anne Graham gave an extremely profound and insightful response. She said: “I believe God is deeply saddened by this, just as we are, but for years we’ve been telling God to get out of our schools, to get out of our government and to get out of our lives. And being the gentleman He is, I believe He has calmly backed out. How can we expect God to give us His blessing and His protection if we demand He leave us alone?”

In light of recent events… terrorists attack, school shootings, etc. I think it started when Madeleine Murray O’Hare (she was murdered, her body found a few years ago) complained she didn’t want prayer in our schools, and we said OK. Then someone said you better not read the Bible in school. The Bible says thou shalt not kill, thou shalt not steal, and love your neighbour as yourself. And we said OK.

Then Dr. Benjamin Spock said we shouldn’t spank our children when they misbehave, because their little personalities would be warped and we might damage their self-esteem (Dr. Spock’s son committed suicide). We said an expert should know what he’s talking about. And we said okay.

Now we’re asking ourselves why our children have no conscience, why they don’t know right from wrong, and why it doesn’t bother them to kill strangers, their classmates, and themselves.

Probably, if we think about it long and hard enough, we can figure it out. I think it has a great deal to do with ‘WE REAP WHAT WE SOW.’

Funny how simple it is for people to trash God and then wonder why the world’s going to hell. Funny how we believe what the newspapers say, but question what the Bible says. Funny how you can send ‘jokes’ through e-mail and they spread like wildfire, but when you start sending messages regarding the Lord, people think twice about sharing. Funny how lewd, crude, vulgar and obscene articles pass freely through cyberspace, but public discussion of God is suppressed in the school and workplace.

Are you laughing yet?

Funny how when you forward this message, you will not send it to many on your address list because you’re not sure what they believe, or what they will think of you for sending it.

Funny how we can be more worried about what other people think of us than what God thinks of us.

Pass it on if you think it has merit.

If not, then just discard it…. no one will know you did. But if you discard this thought process, don’t sit back and complain about what bad shape the world is in.

My Best Regards, Honestly and respectfully,

Ben Stein

Say What You Say…

I recently had a conversation with a friend, who’s also Christian, and engaged to someone of a different religion. As we were talking, I asked him a lot of questions regarding their plans, their concerns, how they’d raise their children etc.. All of which, he freely answered. Halfway through the convo, I realized I was probably being a bit intrusive so I said, “I’m sorry If I’m getting too personal and bombarding you with questions.” He paused, looked at me and said, “I’m happy you’re Asking me questions instead of Attacking me with questions. Most people (probably especially Christians) attack me with their thoughts and get defensive and upset with the whole thing. I’m okay with your questions. They’re helping me to think of a lot of things that are important.” He continued on, but, internally, I stayed there. All I could do was thank God and praise Him for where He’s brought me. If I’d had that conversation with my friend two years ago, maybe even a year ago, I probably would have easily been in that category of “attack.”  But, God…!

I definitely used to be that Christian that was so jacked for Jesus that my passion and excitement sometimes came across as overwhelming, offensive, or, even at times, hurtful. I was so anxious to spread the good news of Christ and share with everyone, that I often let my joy become uncomfortable for someone else. It’s not that the things I was saying weren’t true, or good to hear, but my presentation was way off base.

Whenever you’re sharing something with someone, whether they be Christian or not, the goal should never be to attack, disrespect, make them uncomfortable etc.. Even those things done with good intentions could have poor execution, thus making them wrong.

What it all boils down to is: as Christians, believers, followers of Christ, we are to do things, speak the truth in love. (Ephesians 4:15) Whether it be to offer correction, advice or when talking with someone that doesn’t know about Jesus and His wonderful works, it is all to be done from a place of love. How much would it have sucked for my friend if he decided to share with me what’s going on in his situation and, instead of trying to understand and listen, I got upset and said, “you can’t marry her! She doesn’t believe in God! What are you going to do?!”? Or something equally hurtful and foolish. I imagine he wouldn’t have been helped and probably would never have wanted to discuss that topic, or any others, with me ever again. The purpose was not to tell him he was wrong or point out fault. I don’t know God’s plan for his fiancee, their future or their marriage. And, last time I checked, God is still Sovereign. Which means He’s in control not me… and not even my friend or his fiancee. God will work their union out to be what He’s called it to be.

I write all this to say: If God puts you in a place of being able to help others, speak to someone about Him, share His word, help someone get to know Him better, share your experience if need be, or whatever the case may be… please move forward in love.

Be encouraged

Hal

Take The Limits Off

So, I recently saw the movie “Limitless,” which is basically the story of an aspiring writer that’s introduced to this new drug, a pill, that allows him to use 100% of his brain; since the theory is we only use about 20% daily. This pill puts him into hyper-drive and thrusts all his synapses into recalling, reciting and advancing in every area possible: He can learn a new language in 45min, he retains all information he reads and is able to utilize it in a way that allows him to finish a novel in four days, study law, dominate wall street and the financial district, travel and hold his own in any intellectual arena available, including politics. I mean he can do everything!

As I was watching, I said to myself, man I wish I had that pill. I could only imagine the stories I would be able to write if my brain knew no limits and knew how to extend itself to the far reaches of my imagination. Then, I realized, I do have that, so to speak. I don’t need the pill because I already have something in me that allows me to write, create, think, retain, recall, extend and pursue beyond what I know is possible. I can do it because I have **cue super cheesy overly-dramatic drumroll**….. JESUS!

“I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me” (Philippians 4:13) is not just something we say  to try to encourage one another. It’s truth! Key word being: ALL. Anything that God allows you to put your hand to, can, no it will, be accomplished/conquered because you have the strength of Christ within you, guiding you and getting you through it. And, because He tells us, that whatever He has planned will happen. His word will not return empty (Isaiah 46:11, 55:11). You just have to tap into His power source.

Think of it this way: If you take the gifts God has given you, mixed with the desires He has for you and throw in the strength and power He gives you, then there’s nothing you can’t do! Because while we are limited in our own power, God is not. Thus, in a way, we are not because we’re doing these things through Him… Another cool aspect of the ALL part is this: The gifts that God has given us, the testimonies we have, the things He has us do/go through, is not for us. It’s for someone else. To help them. But, what if you’re saying, “I can’t learn a new language in 45min, nor do I have the desire to”? My response to that is two-fold: 1) Maybe learning to speak fluent Portugese is not your thing, but what if someone else wants to learn but they don’t have the motivation or know-how. But they see you… they see you surrendering yourself to God. They see you worshiping Him with your talent and lifestyle. They want to accomplish things, too.. so they do the same. Now, you’ve done these things by extension because your love and obedience to Christ has inspired someone else. (Matthew 5:16) And 2) Maybe you can’t learn Portugese in 45min but with patience and effort you WILL learn it over time! Because you can do ALL THINGS…

Red or blue pill, what’s it going to be? (yes, that was my totally unrelated nod to The Matrix)

Be Encouraged

Hal

This post was supposed to precede the one on “Focus” but…

You ever had a moment in which you knew what you were hearing, thinking, feeling was from God? And just when you allow yourself to almost think maybe not, He comes in and confirms that exact thing!

Lately, I’ve been in a place in which I’ve struggled a little with my faith. Mainly, the “works” part; taking action. God has spoken many things to me, given me direction and has given me many goals/dreams for life! All of which, He’s said, don’t worry, I got you! And, while I believe Him, I’ve somehow found myself in a position of being fearful of that first step. Or, after taking that first step, like Peter, I begin to focus on the storm and the wind, thus causing me to drown. And this fear has almost pushed me to a place of giving up; of wanting to stop dreaming!

The other night, on the radio, the dj was talking about God and He said someone once counted the number of promises God has made in the Bible, and it totalled out to be over 7thousand! Insane! While, I don’t know if that’s 100% true, I know the things He’s promised in my life, and here lately I’ve found myself praying for those things. Praying for clarity. Praying to hear His voice, above my own. Praying for guidance. Praying to know exactly what He wants me to take on, who He’s called me to be, and the role He has for me in each of these endeavors.

Today, as I opened the Bible app on my phone and went to my daily devotional, I quickly learned the topic was basically how God is Capable. How He’s Able. One of the focus scriptures was Ephesians 3:20 (“now, to Him who is able to do exceedingly abundantly above all that we ask or think, according to the power that works in us”). This was great! I found it to be even greater when I came across this verse again when opening up my Google home page! My soul, which became instantly happy, went right into Worship. I knew God intended for me to read this scripture on this day. I heard God saying not to worry. To trust Him. Not only is He Able but He’s faithful. He will fulfill all promises made, in a way that I can’t even comprehend, beyond what I’ve asked for! I hear Him saying, you’re asking Me for a slice and I’m gonna give you the whole cake! Now is not the time to give up or to stop dreaming… it’s the time to be BOLD and, not to just step out on faith, but to keep walking in the power that works in me – Jesus!

God is Able and He’s Ready….

Be encouraged

Hal

Recently, I’ve felt God speaking to me. Letting me know that there’s purpose, a plan, for my life, and that NOW is the time for certain promises He’s made to come to pass. Now is the time for me to gather up my Faith and put some action to it. No more hoping. Gotta start doing! But, as we all may know, that’s not always the easiest of tasks. For many reasons, but often because we lack the focus to really put a plan to God’s plan for us, if you know what I mean. I found the following video really helpful and encouraging! I pray that it will be more than just something I watched that made me excited about embarking upon that which God is telling me to go take on. I pray that the viewing of this inspires the works that I need to put with my Faith. And, if you’re struggling with this, I pray the same for you.

Be encouraged

Hal

This is too dope not to share…

Praise Him everywhere you go… No matter who’s watching! Worship is a LIFESTYLE!

Brighter Day

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