1 Corinthians 12:31b (NAS)

And I show you a still more excellent way.
1Corinthians 12:31b (NAS)

Saturday, December 31, 2011


Servant and leader are not two words that we would put together to describe someone.  Usually, we think of someone being either one or the other.  Either they are a leader or they are a servant.  A leader is one who is highest in rank or authority, an important, influential person.  A servant, on the other hand, is subject to an owner or master and is made to do tedious and sometimes menial work.  Which of these words would best describe you?  Are you a leader or are you a servant?

We don't have to look far in scripture to see that when God calls an individual to be a leader, he also is calling that person to serve.  The best leader is one who is subject to his owner, (God) and one who is willing to sacrifice his own desires to serve the needs of others.  Jesus is an prime example of a servant leader.  In Hebrews 10:9a he said, "Lo I come to do thy will, O God."  He was subject to the Father when he prayed in the garden, "O my Father, if it be possible, let this cup pass from me; nevertheless not as I will, but as thou wilt." (Matthew 26:39)  He taught this principle to his disciples, as seen in Mark 9:35, "If any man desire to be first (a leader), the same shall be last of all, and servant of all."

While reading 1Samuel I discovered another servant leader. Samuel served Israel as both prophet and priest for many years and was respected as a great leader.  In chapter 12 we read Samuel's words  as he is about to retire.  As, I looked closely at these verses, what I found was a picture of what a servant leader looks like. 

  1. He showed them how to live by his example.  (Verse 3)
  2. He reminded them of the righteous acts of God in the past.  (Verse 7)
  3. He instructed them in the truth.  (Verse 14 & 15)
  4. He interceded for the people.  (Verse 19)
  5. He advised the people which direction to take.  (Verse 20)
  6. He reassured the people that God loved them.  (Verse 22)      
  7. He taught them the good and right way.  (Verse 23)       

We can all learn from Samuel's example of what a servant leader looks like.  It would do us good to evaluate our own leadership roles, whether it's in our homes, our workplace, our church, our community, or our world.  We need leaders who will live exemplary lives, who will speak the truth and teach what is good and right.  We need leaders who will intercede for those God has  placed in their care.   And remember that Jesus said he that would be first, must be the servant of all.

Thursday, December 29, 2011

What did you get for Christmas?

I received some great gifts this Christmas; things that I will enjoy for many days to come.  A new pair of earrings, a Kindle Fire, cookie mix in a penguin oven mitt, and cute coffee mugs just to name a few.  My heart is full as I give thanks to God for a beautiful Christmas.  Beautiful, because I spent time with my family and friends.  Beautiful, because we kept reminding ourselves of the true meaning of Christmas.  Beautiful, because we worshiped and gave our  hearts anew to Christ, who is at the heart of Christmas.  As I thought about these things, I began to see that I had received many gifts that maybe I had taken for granted.
  • I held and loved our granddaughters.  I got down on the floor and played and snuggled and laughed with them.  My granddaughters gave me the gift of JOY.
  • This year we had all three of our children in our home and we enjoyed many meals together, played games, and talked for hours about our future plans and reminisced about our past.  I am so proud of each of them because they have committed their lives to following Christ and doing what is right.  (Psalm 127:3)  Behold, children are a gift of the Lord; the fruit of the womb is a reward.  My children gave me the gift of PEACE.
  • I held my husbands hand when we took a walk and when we prayed.  We looked into each others eyes as we watched our children take care of their children.  My husband gave me the gift of LOVE
  • I was blessed to spend time with my mom and dad, brothers and sister, and nieces and nephews.  The family home was teaming with grand kids and babies and everyone was talking at once.  I wanted to be a part of every conversation, but, I could only stand back and watch and hear bits and pieces of their lives.  Being with my relatives makes my heart steadfast,  because these are my roots.  My relatives gave me the gift of FAITH
  • We also enjoyed an evening with our office staff.  It's so nice to work with people who are honest and trustworthy and work together as a team.  My friends at work gave me the gift of GRATITUDE.
  • Christmas would not be complete without spending time with church friends.  I sang "Happy Birthday Jesus" with the kindergarten Awana class and we talked about the best gift that we could give to Jesus.  I enjoyed a lovely evening with the ladies in women's ministry.   I volunteered to help with the Christmas Bash and was blessed by the people who shared their story with me and humbly prayed for God to intervene in their lives.  My church friends gave me the gift of KINDNESS.
Joy, peace, love, faith, gratitude, and kindness.  These are like beautiful gifts that God gave to me this Christmas.  He wrapped these gifts in the friends and family I share  my life with.  But none of this would be possible without his best gift of all - the gift of Jesus Christ, his son who was born at Christmas so that we might have eternal life.  (John 3:16)  For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten son, that whoever believes in him should not perish, but have eternal life.

Every good thing bestowed and every perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of lights, with whom there is no variation, or shifting shadow.  James 1:17

Sunday, December 11, 2011

Power to Tread on Serpents

While the grand kids were here for the holidays, they wanted to go to the haunted house located on 76 Country Boulevard near the old Walmart store.  It wasn't what I would choose to do for an outing, but, I went along for the ride.  This time though, they insisted that I go through the haunted house with them, since I had never been inside.  Arm-in-arm we entered the dark passage way that takes you past all kinds of grotesque and scary looking monsters.  There were ghosts and vampires, demons and devils, the insane, surgery that had gone bad, and clowns.  A few added surprises were strange noises, things that jumped out at you, and even puffs of air that sent ear-splitting screams from the kids.  They huddled behind me, I said a prayer, and we inched our way through the maze of terror and death.  I have to admit it increased my heart rate and felt a little creepy, but, I spoke the name of Jesus and calmly lead my grand kids through the dark caverns unharmed.

The following day was Sunday and during the worship service at church the Holy Spirit reminded me of my experience in the haunted house.  Ephesians 6:12 tells us that we have an enemy, the devil.  "For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the powers, against the world-forces of this darkness, against the spiritual forces of wickedness in the heavenly places."  We have a real enemy of our souls, Satan, and he wants to destroy us.  There is a war being fought right now, between the forces of good and evil, for the souls of men.  But time is running out for Satan, for 2000 years ago Jesus Christ, God's only son was victorious over sin and death.  His death on the cross paid the penalty for our sins,  winning for us forgiveness and a restored relationship with the Father.  Sin no longer has power to enslave us and separate us from God's holiness.  The way is opened by the blood of Jesus.  Three days later he rose from the dead, victorious over death and the grave and now we have the promise of the Resurrection from the dead.  "O death, where is thy sting? O grave, where is thy victory?"  1Corinthians 15:55.

As believers, Christ dwells in us by the Holy Spirit and because of him, we can walk into the dark places of the enemy without fear.  Just like when we were in the haunted house, we are surrounded by wickedness and darkness, but, praise God we have the light of the world that lights our path and we have the truth so that we will not be deceived.  Through prayer and the name of Jesus, we can release those who are held captive in a prison of sin.  When we were going through the haunted house, we never knew what was around the next turn.  Through Christ, we have available the armor of God, so let's take up the shield of faith and the sword of the Spirit, which is the Word of God.  The grand kids and I made it safely to the exit of  the haunted house, and  likewise, Jesus said in Luke 10:19, "Behold, I give unto you power to tread on serpents and scorpions, and over all the power of the enemy; and nothing shall by any means hurt you."

Wednesday, December 7, 2011


My eyes shall see what my heart has known,
when I behold his face
and I gaze into the eyes of love
that saw my sin and loved me still.

My hands shall reach
and hold and feel
the nail-scared hands that carried sin
and paid the price that I might live.

My ears shall hear in a different way
the sweet sounds of heavens air
and peace like waves upon the shore
shall wash away my cares.

My nose shall smell the sweet incense
of prayers of all the saints
as we gather round the throne of God
to praise his holy name.

My mouth shall taste the wine of heaven
that he promised to share with all
who long for him and live for him
and love not their life, but  him.

Revelation 21:5a   And he that sat upon the throne said, Behold, I make all things new.

Friday, December 2, 2011

The Creative Process

Start with an empty page,
a blank canvas,
a collection of data,
a pile of materials,
a waiting face,

Yielding to the hand that guides,
not knowing the destination,
but, simply obeying the call,
to be ready.

Chosen for a specific task,
that flows from the heart,
driven by an insatiable desire,
a Divine spark,
compelled to shape and mold,

Watching as the beauty unfolds,
feeling so alive,
giving thanks to God for,
the creative process.

Exodus 36:2   And Moses called Bezaleel and Aholiab, and every wise hearted man, in whose heart the Lord had put wisdom, even every one whose heart stirred him up to come unto the work to do it.  (The work of building the tabernacle).