Daily Devotional – 7/11/13 “Hold up your end!”

If 2 people are carrying a, let’s say, couch and one of those people are not holding up their end, doesn’t it put an extra strain on the other person making them work harder to cover the part you’re letting slip? If not, then I would think the couch would fall, right? Well, I wonder how God feels every time we allow our end to slip. I wonder how He feels knowing He has to work extra hard to make up for the things we consistently do, even when we know they are wrong. Yea, I know that with sin comes repentance but this doesn’t mean you should keep committing the same sin over and over; haven’t you learned anything from that mistake yet? Oh, it just feels right lying in the arms of someone else’s spouse, right? Well, when will you want your own? Oh, maybe you feel like that store has plenty of clothes so they won’t miss the items you still every time you go in there, right? Well, when will you stop stealing and start buying? Oh, I got it, you enjoy being hateful, spiteful, mean, a feeling hurter, a backstabber, a liar, untrustworthy and a fun snatcher; is that it? Well, when will you grow up and let go of all that anger that has you angry and not worth being around? When will you finally hold up your end from slipping? When will you finally put your back into it and stand up and raise your end? When will you stop acting like somebody owes you something because all I owe you is to love you? That’s what Romans 13:8 says, “Owe no one anything, except to love each other, for the one who loves another has fulfilled the law.” When will you stop being lazy and hold up your end? When will you stop oversleeping and actually go to church? When will you stop being bitter and love instead? When will you seek God’s kingdom instead of trying to be a baller down here? When will you stop thinking it’s all about you and make it all about God’s word? When will you stop going to church being a part of the mess and go for the message? When will you stop gossiping about folk whose business ain’t none of yours anyway? When will you stop hating on what other folk got and start praying for what you need? When will you hold up your end? When will you stop with the pity and throw in a little praise? Ok, so your child got sick, your job laid you off, your car starting acting crazy, your spouse acting like they’re hitting the sauce, your kids acting brand new, your friends haven’t really been there like you think they should, doctor looking at you strange, the scale keeps adding instead of subtracting, you keep going but you’re almost out of gas, you’re tired but can’t sleep, cried out but the tears won’t stop and feeling like you’re drowning even when you’re not in water but what now? You’ve read the scripture in Job 14:1 that says “A person who is born of a woman is short-lived and is full of trouble,” haven’t you? Then stop acting like it’s only happening to you and hold up your end, do your part, pray more, fast sometime, encourage yourself most time and trust God all the time. Hold up your end because when it falls, it may just land on your foot and then what will you do? Hold up your end and God will give you the strength to carry on!

Daily Devotional – 3/15/12 “Borrowing when you should be buying!”

Don’t you know that God has made us the lender and not the borrower because he has all that we need? Well, he also made us the lender because when you borrow from folks they have a hold over you and this hold can drain you of the life that God has destined for you to live. If you don’t believe me, go borrow something from somebody and see how things play out. Call your sister or brother and borrow $20, if he or she is the type that never let things die, you’ll forever hear about it until you either pay or die. It’s sad, right? This is why God says in Proverbs 22:7, “The rich rules over the poor and the borrower are the slave of the lender.” Now, just think about the house you’re currently borrowing from the bank (yea you’re borrowing until it is paid in full), don’t you get up every day to go to a job that you really don’t like, to pay them their monthly payment? See, they have this hold over you because as soon as you miss paying them, they start calling to get their merchandise back. I know that in order to get a house or car you have to borrow from the banks and mortgage companies but God didn’t make it so that you would have to work forever paying off debt. If you know that house is not something you can afford, rent. If you know that car note will push you farther into debt and even further behind, then save to buy you a car for cash and ride the bus. Romans 13:8 says “Let no debt remain outstanding, except the continuing debt to love one another, for he who loves his fellowman has fulfilled the law.” Live within your means and then mean to live. If you spend every day of your life working the only rest you’ll find is in death and this is not what God wants for us because Ecclesiastes 8:15 says, “So I commend the enjoyment of life, because nothing is better for a man under the sun than to eat and drink and be glad. Then joy will accompany him in his work all the days of the life God has given him under the sun.” When you enjoy life it shows in EVERY part of your life including your work. Don’t get so caught up in trying to live in the biggest house and trying to drive the flashy cars because those might just be the death of you.

Now that this has been said, let me drop something in the spirit of folks whose borrowing other folks husbands or wives, they are not yours! Yea, I know you think because you are dipping and hiding from other folks that God isn’t seeing, but he is. Why are you so complacent (that’s satisfied) with borrowing when you should be buying your own? I don’t mean buying with money but I mean with prayers, fasting and preparing yourself to receive the blessing that God has for you in the form of YOUR husband or wife. You do know that when you borrow you’ll have to eventually give them back to their rightful owner, right? While you’re sleeping in a cold bed all alone, they’re at home snuggling on the couch watching a movie. While you are settling for celebrating Valentine’s Day on 2/15, they’re at home enjoying their. You do know that no matter how many times they tell you they are leaving, they don’t actually mean it and even if they do leave, what makes you think you’ll have something that’ll stop him from leaving you? You settle for second best because you feel like that’s all you’re worth when God has made you in his image which makes you an heir to his kingdom and that makes you worthy for more than a late night booty call. And just to throw this in for free, God says in Proverbs 6:29, “So is he who sleeps with another man’s wife; no one who touches her will go unpunished.” Women, please don’t think that leaves you out because it holds true to you too because the commandment say in Exodus 20:14, “Do not commit adultery.” Stop borrowing other folks stuff and buy your own. Wait for God to send your blessing and you do have one because God made a woman for every man and when you join together as husband and wife, you become one flesh.

Plus, I’ve never found it to be worth it to borrow something you actually need anyway. It’s like borrowing air when you need air to live. I don’t mean big things like houses and cars, I mean small things. It’s like you borrowing a pen or pencil every time you need one, buy some to keep for yourself. If you need something you don’t have and you’re able to, buy it! God has given us all we need to be the best at whatever we do. He has given us a gift and Proverbs 18:16 says, “A man’s gift makes room for him and brings him before great men.” See, the God given gift that you have, if it is used, will open doors for you that you didn’t know existed. Look at Tyler Perry who went from being homeless and sleeping in his car to now hosting parties for the President, owning his own plane and one of the richest men in the world. His gift of writing and making folks laugh made room for him to grow. Look at Oprah Winfrey, who gifts of talking made her into one of the richest women today. Look at the many singers and actresses who were discovered because their gifts made room for them. God has given you a gift but you have to decide to use it. 1 Peter 4:10 says, “God has given each of you a gift from his great variety of spiritual gifts. Use them well to serve one another.” I know that you are now wondering if you have been blessed with a gift and your answer is in 2nd Timothy 1:6 which say “You received a gift from God when I placed my hands on you [to ordain you]. Now I’m reminding you to fan that gift into flames.” See, God chose you to be blessed with whatever gift he has given you because he knows you can handle it. I know at times the going might get hard and you may want to give up, but hold on. I know that sometime you want to throw in the towel, but baby take that towel, wipe the sweat from your forehead and stick it back in your pocket and walk on because even when you’ve been knocked down and the counter is almost to 10 all you have to do is tag God in and he’ll finish the fight for you. If you are still not convinced that you are worthy of the gift that he has given you, read Romans 11:29 that says “God never changes his mind when he gives gifts or when he calls someone.” Why, because he made you worthy of your calling and you are worthy because you are God’s child. You don’t have to settle for the scraps and the leftovers because God has made you the lender and not the borrower. Just because you have a little debt and you may be living paycheck to paycheck now, it doesn’t mean that’s the way it has to be. Sit down and make a budget and stick to it. Stop acting like you have something to prove to folk who are also struggling. The only reason why you can’t see their struggle is because they know how to cover it up. Yea, I may dress like I got money and I may even walk like it but that’s because I don’t have to look like my circumstance. I may have cancer in my body but I don’t have to wear a shirt to broadcast it. I may not have a job but that doesn’t mean I have to post it on Facebook every day. I may even be without food but it doesn’t mean I have to look like it. I’ve come to realize that God will send a blessing when you least expect it and God says you have not because you ask not. Stop borrowing the things you should be buying by now. You are worthy of all you think you deserve, so go get it. Because borrowing leads to begging and begging leads to backbiting and backbiting leads to backsliding and backsliding leads to bad choices and bad choices leads to you being battered with bruises by those who you borrowed from that now have you bound.