Thursday, March 15, 2018

A Model to Receive and Respond to God's Call

One of my annual goals is to read the Bible from Genesis to Revelation each year! This allows me to see the big picture of the Word of God and its major themes. As I read, I'm always looking for models. These models help me to be able to know what steps to take in my ministry and personal life.

This morning I have been reading 1 Samuel. During my reading, I saw the following model. This is a model to help individuals to grow in leadership. It also gives a model to an individual who desires to be used by God at a high level. Let God's Word help you to receive a higher call!

The call of Samuel and My call

·       Samuel is dedicated to God before his call
o   Samuel’s dedication is at a higher level than others (1:11)
§  Given all the days of his life (1:28)
§  His hair will not be cut which speaks of the Nazarite Vow
§  Samuel is a person who is faithful (2:35)
§  Samuel is a person who will do according to what is in God’s heart and mind (2:35)

·       Samuel’s Model of Ministry
o   Samuel worships (1:28)
o   Samuel ministers in the presence of Eli to the Lord (2:11; 3:1)
o   Samuel ministers before the Lord (2:18)

·       Samuel is in a continual growth mode spiritually, physically and relationally (2:26)

·       God calls Samuel (3:1-14)
o   The call comes after his dedication
o   The call comes after he is already ministering before Eli, his mentor
o   The call comes, but he does not have direction (3:3-8)
o   He receives direction from his mentor on how to answer the call (3:9)
o   The call comes, and he answers the call as instructed by his mentor (3:10)

·       Samuel’s reaction to the call (3:15-19)
o   Even though he has the call the time of the ministry of the call has not happened. He continues his regular ministry (3:15)
o   He has a fear of what will happen during the fulfillment of the call (3:15)
o   Samuel continues his Spiritual Growth (3:19)
§  The Lord is with him
§  The Word of God becomes important to him

·       Others reaction to his call (3:20)
o   They recognize his call and ministry

·       God reaction to Samuel’s call (3:21)
o   God appears again
o   God reveals Himself to Samuel through the Word of God

Friday, July 28, 2017



We are being controlled by technology. Social media is part of the reason an eighteen-year-old young woman is in jail for causing the death of her fourteen-year-old sister. While drinking and driving the old sister chooses to make the trip live on Instagram. She is drunk on alcohol and Instagram! Her attention to driving an automobile is replaced by the desire to post and get others attention. She loses control of the vehicle! Her fourteen-year-old sister is thrown out of the car as the vehicle rolls crushing the teenager. The old sister jumps out of the car with her phone in her hand streaming her actions of running to her battered and bruised sister, gripping her body and yelling at her: "I'm sorry! I'm sorry for killing you! I'm going to jail!" I hurt for her as I think of the emotional and mental pain that she dealing with in the present moment! Will she ever find relief? Will her guilt drive her deeper into self destruction?

We, all individually,  need a DIGITAL DETOX!!! Our families need to DETOX DIGITALLY too! 
Technology is removing from the family the most important ingredient to saving our families, the influence of the parents. A parents influence grows because of relationship. A relationship develops because of time spent together. Your child is spending more time with You Tube than with YOU! You're losing your most valuable tools! Influence!

When you ask a child a question that they do not know the answer to they will respond: "Let me google it" instead of saying let me ask my Dad or Mom! The answers of google will be filled with sites that might have the correct answer and with others that the answers they give are definitely wrong!

I'm inviting all parents to read the above article and take the challenge of seven days to have a DIGITAL DETOX for their family! Click on the above picture, and it will take you to the article. Join other parents and take the seven-day challenge! 

Friday, March 17, 2017

One of my yearly goals is to read the Bible from Genesis to Revelations. I have used some resources to complete the project annually, from the ancient tradition of a handheld leather-bound Bible to the present day internet bible of  Throughout the years I also have used a variety of tracking methods to record the journey which has had different lengths of time, from 90 to 365 days to complete the reading. 

One of the most important exercises to help me gain insight into the book of the Bible that I'm about to start reading is to read the background information of the book. The background material would include, among other pertinent information, the date of writing, a discussion of who the author is, the purpose and main themes that are present in the text. 

I just completed my reading of the Pentateuch, and I'm starting to read Joshua. As I began to read the background of Joshua, I came across the following guidelines. The author thoughts resonated within my mind. I saw value in them and want to share with others how to enter into the Biblical text.

The message of Joshua can encourage and have a wonderful impact on one’s life. For that to occur, however, we need to be serious in our study of Scripture. For those who want the message of Joshua to positively influence their lives for God, the following four words are offered as food for thought:

(1) Thirst:      

The psalmist wrote, “As the deer pants for streams of water, so my soul pants for you, O God. My soul thirsts for God, for the living God. When can I go and meet with God?” (Psalm 42:1-2, NIV). Sadly, men too often seek to fill the void in their souls with things that never truly satisfy. We were all created with a void that only God Himself can satisfy. The psalmist recognized this and after the analogy of the deer thirsting for water, spoke of the thirst in his soul that only God could fill. But then there was the question, “When can I go and meet with God?” One time and place where we can do just that is in our Bible study. The most effective Bible study occurs when we study out of a thirst to know God. May it be so as we study the book of Joshua.        

(2) Toil:         

In our fast foods, mall-oriented society where we expect everything to be quick and easy, we too often approach our Bible study in the same way. Effective Bible study is hard work and requires diligence as in anything worthwhile if we want to accomplish much. “Be diligent to present yourself approved to God as a workman who does not need to be ashamed, handling accurately the word of truth” (2 Tim. 2:15).

(3) Time:        

We can heat a cup of water in a microwave in a minute and quickly mix a tablespoon of our favorite instant coffee and have something hot to drink, but the greatest blessing usually comes from meditating, reading, and spending time in God’s precious book.

(4) Teachableness:     

Again, in a world so full of man’s ideas, theologies, ideologies, and philosophies, we will get the most when we come to the Scripture with a teachable spirit asking God to teach us His truth, for it is His truth and only His truth that sanctifies and sets us free (John 17:17; 8:32).

As you read this study, hopefully with your Bible in hand, may these four ‘Ts’ be in your mind and heart. (1)

I want to do all I can to remember and apply these actions to my daily Bible reading. As I strive to lead the most important people on earth, the people of God, I'm constantly reminding myself that I need God's wisdom to take them where He wants them to go. His Word is a lamp unto my feet and light unto my path (Psalm 119:105).