Jealousy in the Kingdom?

Jealousy in the Kingdom?

Day 3
31 Reasons To Praise by Melanie can be purchase at

I have ALL the Spiritual Blessings
-Ephesians 1:3

As I read the devotion there was one thing that JUMPED out at me. “EVERY SPIRITUAL BLESSING” – then I remembered something that I questioned; why is there so much competition in the church? Why is there jealousy in the church, God? And in an instant the answer was clear!!

People are seeking the same “Spiritual Blessing” – but I think there is a lack of WISDOM in knowing that we are all on the same level playing field. None of us is so special to be more worthy than another. Not one of us is “UNWORTHY” of any blessing – but we are given this “GIFT” because of the precious blood that was shed by the Lamb of God who died so that we ALL have the right to “EVERY SPIRITUAL BLESSING”

If you read further Ephesians 4:11 – 13 MSG
..He handed out gifts above and below, filled heaven with his gifts, filled earth with his gifts. He handed out gifts of apostle, prophet, evangelist, and pastor-teacher to train Christ’s followers in skilled servant work, working within Christ’s body, the church, until we’re all moving rhythmically and easily with each other, efficient and graceful in response to God’s Son, fully mature adults, fully developed within and without, fully alive like Christ.

We each have our own calling. When we each focus on what God has called us to do – which is clearly listed in the above scripture, we will have no need to envy another. Unless we are guilt-ridden because we are not running our own race and desire the race of another. The other rational is a person is comparing “temporal blessings” – which are not guaranteed…and for me, that is were I would say; FAVOR AIN’T FAIR.

Broken Crayons Still Color On Purpose – All of us come to God with a zero. And God comes to us with a ten, and He gives us everything we could ever possibly dream of in His Son Jesus Christ.

Day 3 of 31 Reasons to Praise

Thank you, Melanie N. Lee


In Christ There is Freedom

Now the Lord is the Spirit, and where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is freedom. – 2 Corinthians 3:17

Imagine this scene: A broken man awakens one morning with no options.
Hopeless, owning nothing but an empty stomach, he stands starkly upon the auctioneer’s block as a slave. Shoulders slumped, pride stripped away, gaunt eyes staring aimlessly into the distance, his ashen face conveys only shame.

Suddenly, a man with gentle eyes appears, and this man sees value and potential in this broken man. “Did I see a spark of something in that man’s eyes?” the slave wonders. It couldn’t be, but his hope rises as the gentle man pays the price, brings him home, clothes him, and feeds him richly. His master does love him!

Do you recognize this picture? I hope so. It’s a picture of your life in Christ. You and I were once slaves on the auction block of sin. We stood broken by sin. Yet our loving and gentle Master—for reasons we may never know, and for reasons not found in us—saw value in us. And He paid for our freedom with His own blood, on a cross.

Through Jesus Christ, we’ve been freed from bondage. But that’s not the end, only the beginning. We must move on and ask the question, “What have we been freed for?” The answer: for Jesus Christ!

We’ve been freed by Christ, for Christ. That is, so we might serve Him, praise Him, and give Him glory.

God’s purpose in redeeming men from sin is not to give them freedom to do as they please but freedom to do as He pleases, which is to live righteously.

– Steve Arterburn

Father God, I thank you that in you I am free, no longer bound by the chains of my sin. I surrender my life to you, Lord and pray your will be done in and through my life. Amen.

Adapted from Fearless for Life by Stephen Arterburn, Paul Meier and Robert L.Wise

Surviving the Storm
But when the disciples saw him walking on the sea, they were terrified, and said, “It is a ghost!” and they cried out in fear. But immediately Jesus spoke to them, saying, “Take heart; it is I. Do not be afraid”. – Matthew 14:26-27

Every day we are confronted by events that strike fear in our hearts. Headlines shout disaster, violence, crime, poverty and depravity—we live in such turbulent times. How do we stay afloat as the waters swirl out of control around us?

The Bible is filled with God’s pledges of divine intervention, but nothing is clearer than the Apostle Paul’s advice to Timothy: “For God did not give us a spirit of timidity, but a spirit of power, of love and of self-discipline.” (2 Tim. 1-7 NIV). Christians have the tools to turn back fear!

Rather than using these tools, we often want to live in a world free of fearful situations. When we don’t find this, we give up and exist in hopeless desperation. We may even turn away from God because we expected Him to keep us from harm’s way – something God never told us He would do.

Remember the story of the disciples in the fierce storm in Matthew, chapter 14. They watched him feed five thousand people with a few fish and five loaves of bread. They witnessed Him heal blind men and yet, when it came to facing their first crisis in the midst of the storm, they raised the bar of cowardly behavior to a new level. The bottom line of this story is this, Jesus knew of the pending storm and the struggle they would face, but He allowed them to get into the boat and into turbulent waters.

Here’s what we can learn from this. Sometimes there are valuable lessons that God wants to teach us in our difficult times – before He calms the storm and quiets our fears. God never promised us a trouble free life. He did promise to be there with us in the dark times and the stormy seas, to give us hope in spite of fear. This knowledge becomes the foundation for living free of fear’s chains.

Facing your fear is not based on the abstract idea of simply believing. It is not based on the nebulous commitment to positive thinking. It is based on the concrete promise that He will be there, in the midst of our storm. Whether He carries us through the storm or whether He simply calms it down, we have the guarantee of His word that He will be there. As believers, we cannot simply say no to apprehension. We must say yes to the Master of the storm.

There is only one secure foundation: a genuine, deep relationship with Jesus Christ, which will carry you through any and all turmoil. No matter what storms are raging all around, you’ll stand firm if you stand on His love. – Charles Stanley

Lord, I acknowledge that I have the truth of your Word which promises me that You will be with me in the midst of my storm. I stand firm in the truth that You will never leave me or forsake me. No matter how violent my storm might be, You are the Master of my storm. I will not fear. Amen.

Adapted from Fearless for Life by Stephen Arterburn, Paul Meier and Robert L.Wise

Dangers of Isolation

Carry each other’s burdens, and in this way, you will fulfill the law of Christ. – Galatians 6:2

You hear it from almost every corner: American culture is becoming increasingly marked by loneliness and isolation. In one way it’s understandable. There is a sense of safety and control in isolation and disconnection, but it’s a false sense of safety. In fact, living lonely is anything but safe. It’s a dangerous lifestyle because it allows a person to overlook real life, real people, and all the benefits and rewards that go with growing relationships.

And probably more important, our character has little chance to grow when we live life in isolation from others. It allows our thinking to go unchallenged and allows damaging issues we may struggle with to grow and thrive in the fertile soil isolation provides.

If you’re feeling isolated, do what an old commercial on television used to say, ‘Reach out and touch someone.’

– Steve Arterburn

You can make more friends in two months by becoming more interested in other people than you can in two years by trying to get people interested in you. – Dale Carnegie

Broken Crayons Still Color

Broken Crayons Still Color

Try this:  Sit in total silence for 2 minutes – and where ever your mind drifts to – realign and focus on the goodness of JESUS.  At the end of that 2 minutes – write me a note – here with the first thing that comes to your heart.

Working on a workshop and I want to gather information.  Thank you in advance for your participation.

God IS Love

Here is the conference:  –>

Identity Crises

Identity Crises

There was a time when I had no idea who I was.  When I was with “them” – I acted like them.  When I was with “y’all” – I acted like y’all.  It was a miserable time from the age of 6 years old until 50 years old, I struggled with my true self.

What about you?  Do you know who you are?  Do you know why you were created?  Do you know your purpose in life?

Share your journey with me and then hear all about mine – how God dealt with me running from HIM.

1 Peter 2:9  – But you are a chosen people, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, God’s special possession, that you may declare the praises of him who called you out of darkness into his wonderful light.

Embrace who you were created to be!  Beautiful!

I’ll Turn Every Blessing Into Praise

I’ll Turn Every Blessing Into Praise

Jesus followers—and even people who are unsure of God—often respond to tragedy by first appealing to God for help and then questioning His intentions. Either way, difficulty has a way of making us aware of our dependence on God. In these moments when He is all we have, hopefully we can realize that He is all we need.

For Job of the Bible, this was no mental exercise. Job actually experienced the loss of everything he held most dear in life. How did he respond? His book is where we get the phrase, “blessed be the name of the Lord!”

In both trial and blessing, a grateful heart returns praise to God. When we fail to praise God for His blessings, we make fertile soil for poisonous seeds of pride in our hearts. Ideas like, “I deserve this, I earned this, and I did this,” begin to take root and overshadow God’s providential work in our lives. When we instead return God’s blessings as praise, we make fertile soil for God to do abundantly more than we could ever ask or imagine.

Want vs. Have

I Won’t Let What I Want Rob Me Of What I Have

Contentment and gratitude aren’t identical, but they sure are family. Contentment lives somewhere near the beginning of the path toward a more grateful perspective.

For instance, it’s difficult to have gratitude for something you’ve received when you’re at the same time wanting more of that very thing. Think of a toddler who says thank you for sweets because they’ve discovered that’s how to get more. Are they glad to have the sweets? Yes. But, are they content with what they’ve already received? Probably not. A grateful perspective realizes God gave us the good we have, responds with praise, and then believes His good is enough. Yet, we often come to God with a toddler-like, “Thank you. More, please.”

How do we keep discontentment from robbing us of the realization of God’s all-sufficient provision? We practice saying, “Thank You, God. You’re enough.” When we do, we’ll find gratitude turns what we have into enough.

Try this: Look around you and start thanking God for the things you see. Start a mental list today of the things He’s done for you. Share them in a discussion or post them on social media this week.

Stay Positive!

Every Good Thing Comes From God

Most of us agree with this idea that every good thing comes from God. But do our words and attitudes agree with it? One way to find out is to ask, “Is it obvious to others that I believe God is the provider of everything good in my life?”

Try this exercise whenever you need to strengthen your grateful perspective. Think of something or someone good you have. Now, work backwards until you find God as the source of that good thing.

Realizing God is the source of our good comes with many benefits. Not only do we become more grateful when we realize we’re not spinning up the good in our lives, but we become less anxious about loss, better at caretaking, more generous in giving, and less friendly to pride.

Pray: God, thank You for Your goodness. Not just for the good things, experiences, and people, but just for You. For who You are. Because, Lord, You are so good. Fill my heart and mind with gratitude for my relationship with You.

Grateful #1

Be The One

Ten lepers were miraculously healed. This miracle not only cured a horrendous and painful disease, but it also freed these men to return to their families and rejoin their communities. Everything changed because of what Jesus did, but only one returned to thank Him.

It’s obvious to us Jesus literally gave these men their life back. So why wouldn’t all 10 return to lavishly thank Him? It’s easy to judge the nine, but maybe Jesus intended we focus on the one. You see, like the lepers, Jesus gave each of us brand-new life. Will you be the one who’s grateful? Will you grow your daily habit of gratitude on the realization of what Jesus has done for you?