One Thing That May Make Your Reward Instantly Vanish Before Your Eyes!

You give and you’re promised a reward, right? Not so fast! A reward is something you can opt-out of and not even know it. Listen to how it can unfold so you don’t do the same…

A rush of emotions poured over me. I saw a person make a huge donation to an organization that’s feeding hungry children and orphans all over the world.

I was blown away! Ecstatic might be a good word too. I was excited about how his gift was going to impact these kids. And too, I was excited for this individual knowing that a truck load of rewards were going to be dumped into his lap.

But then I gasped!

I wanted to run up to him and say, “STOP! Stop speaking. You’re blowing it!”

Blowing what?

His reward.

He just let it fly out the window. Because his mouth revealed what he gave.

Bummer.

Really big bummer.

Because this was a really BIG gift!

The Real Reason Behind the Giving

At first I thought, this is really cool that he has learned the joy of unbridled giving. But then when he opened his mouth and began to tell people what he had done it became very apparent why he had given. It was to be seen. It was to feed his ego. It was to inflate his self-esteem.

And guess what? He may have gained those things. But he lost the reward that would have come from above. What a thought, the mother-load sacrificed for a tiny slice of “Good job!” Those momentary feelings he received, the at-a-boy pat on his back…that’s it! That’s all he gets for his generosity. Sad. Because God had arranged more.

This is what the Bible says about it in Matthew 6:1-4 (NLT):

Watch out! Don’t do your good deeds publicly, to be admired by others, for you will lose the reward from your Father in heaven. When you give to someone in need, don’t do as the hypocrites do—blowing trumpets in the synagogues and streets to call attention to their acts of charity! I tell you the truth; they have received all the reward they will ever get. But when you give to someone in need, don’t let your left hand know what your right hand is doing. Give your gifts in private, and your Father, who sees everything, will reward you.”

The Acid Giving Test:

If you can pull it off in secret, most likely your motives for giving are good. But if you’re doing it to be seen – that’s not good.

If you want credit for it here, you’ll sacrifice credit for it there. Where? Heaven, where the rewards are much weightier.

Here’s what you can do to check yourself the next time you feel like giving:

• Are you giving to someone else so you can give to yourself (via self-esteem, accolades, recognition, etc.) If so, then you’re not giving to God.

• Have you ever talked about the money you gave away?

• Do you tell others about your good deeds?

• Have you ever Tweeted or Facebooked your status after helping someone out?

If so, enjoy. Cause that’s all the reward you’re gonna get. Bask in it while it lasts. Or, you can wait for the praise from God and have it forever!

How much of a reward do you want? Do you want a little here? Or do you want it forever there? Shut your trap so it doesn’t shut down your reward!

Be a top-secret giver and enjoy the rewards forever.

 
Prayer Booster: “God I want to give with a pure  heart and for the right reasons. The next time I give, let my motive be to bless others – not myself. Help me to squash the desire to make it in anyway about me. I choose to wait for my reward and to give with no strings attached. Amen.”

What say you? Have you ever lost your reward? How would the redo look if it were possible? How will you give next time? Leave your thoughts in the comment section. 


The Secret Cure for Disappointment
Disappointed.

You’re ticked aren’t ya?

I don’t blame you.

You had it all figured out.

You thought it would be better than this.

This stinks. It’s ok that you are mad. I’d be mad too.

Let me show you how you can keep disappointment from ever touching you again.

That’s a bold statement, huh?

Try me. This works.

You can have your money back if it doesn’t.

Oh, wait, you’re getting this advice for free. Good, then you have nothing to lose. Come with me for a minute. Let’s discuss the CURE for disappointment. It will be well worth your time.

Ready to Eat?

Imagine I invite you over for dinner. I seat you at my table decked out in the finest my dish closet has to offer. I place a napkin in your lap and explain that you are about to enjoy a delicious seven-course meal. Backwards.

That’s right. We start with dessert. From there we make our way backwards toward the main course, salad, hors d’oeuvres, and everything in-between.

Dessert first! Cool! But by the time you get to the main course you are so full you can’t enjoy the caviar. So you’re a little miffed. And you’re disappointed with my way of doing things.

This didn’t go the way you thought it would. It started out ok. It sure looked like fine dining according to plan. But hey, things got out of order. And looking at it in reverse, with an upset stomach, leaves you an unhappy camper. And an unhappy diner. Hold on, I’ll get you some Rolaids.

Here’s another scenario.

The man or woman of your dreams sent your heart a pitter-pattering. First came courtship. Marriage. And oh, count ‘em, three baby carriages.

Years later your heart takes a dip. It plunges to the lowest place on earth. The spouse of your dreams morphs into the spouse you hate. It started with the affair. You were cheated on, not once, but twice. No way! You didn’t sign up for that. Your soul mate ripped your soul out and your heart is in shreds.

Disappointed. No one can imagine. This is not the marriage you had in mind. You’re irate. You’ve been rejected. The pain is like an avalanche that snows you under.

Let’s go back to the table.

Remember, you’re the guest at MY table. What I say goes. We do the meal as I have designed, not how you have imagined.

Let me ask, “What other table do you belly up to?” Did I hear you say, “God’s?” You eat from His table? Here’s the difference between my table, your table, and God’s table.

If you’re the guest at your own table, you can do the meal as you please. But here’s the rub. When you’re sitting at God’s table, He’s boss. And guess what? You’re not excused until the meal is over. You have to eat whatever God puts in front of you. Even if you don’t think you can stomach it. Even if the meal is too long. You have no choice. God’s the chief cook and bottle washer here.

So what do you do to ensure disappointment isn’t the feast at your table? Here’s what you’ve been waiting for, the cure for disappointment:

Revamp your expectations!

Sometimes we expect unrealistic things. Things that were never in the plan for us.

How do you know if your expectation is unrealistic? Answer: If it doesn’t become real.

Now, I’m not saying you need to throw away the promises of God. Not at all. God will make good on His
promises. But sometimes we get what God promises mixed up with what we want God to promise us.

So then, we need to revamp our expectations. If we adjust our expectations, we will save ourselves disappointment. It’s that simple. Not easy. But it will save you heartache.

How do you revamp your expectations?

Shoot for something lower? No, just be open to things not going according to how you planned.

So how do you revamp your expectations and still have faith?

Expect the best. Hope for the best. FAITH for the best.

But know sometimes you will be shortchanged in your eyes. Only because you don’t always know what’s best. Therefore, we expect what we think is best, not what God thinks is best. Only God knows, and He doesn’t always tell. Sometimes God serves hors d’oeuvres and the salad last.

And wouldn’t it be easier to trust that if God starts out with dessert, it would be a good thing? Whatever whacked way He does things is gonna be to your benefit.

How do I know? Because “The Lord will withhold no good thing from those who do what is right.” (Psalm 84:11b NLT)

God is not holding out on you.

Even if the order is messed up.

Even if what He puts on your plate tastes crappy.

Even if He serves up something you don’t like.

God is a rewarder of those who diligently seek Him (Hebrews 11:6 NLT). Seek Him, and you will be feasting on the exact course for your life at the right time, even if you don’t realize it at that moment.

Even if you’re confused about the dish that’s in front of you, you can feast on what you didn’t expect without being disappointed.

How? Because you have revamped your expectations. Which means you will no longer be disappointed.

That’s it. You’re cured.

You’ll be ok. God said so.

Give me your feedback. Let’s talk about this. Leave your comments in the reply section. Talk to you soon!


Why God Hates it When You Trash Talk YOURSELF
Imagine this…You forget to unplug the iron, it falls and burns a big ol’ hole in your ironing board cover. Rats! Thank God, it didn’t catch the house on fire. Still, you feel like an loser.

Or get this, You’re late and your whipping in and out of traffic like Jeff Gordon. All of the sudden your car slows down and it’s not because you let your foot off the accelerator. It’s because your gas tank has gone bone dry. You forgot to get gas this morning. Grrrrrr!….You think, “I’m such a dork!”

Or you bounce a check…again. In fact, it’s the third check you’ve bounced this month. Not intentional. Just happened. You were juggling things – trying to make it all work. Fail. Fail. Fail. What slips out of your mouth? I’m such a failure!

When you goof up, what’s the first thought that races through your mind?

I am so stupid!

Really?

Is that the best you can come up with?

Or try this on for size…

“Gosh, I just can’t get it right.”

“I am so forgetful.”

“I’m an irresponsible dim whit.”

“I’m such a goof!”

“Nice job, bozo!”

“I’m such a fool, will I ever learn?”

“I will never get ahead!”

Ouch. Ouch. Ouch.

Wonder how God stomachs all of our insane, self-inflicting comments when we start letting them roll.

Right now, I’m picturing God sitting on His throne, listening to someone tear you, someone He loves, into shreds. Doesn’t matter that the same person who’s spouting off the name-calling is also the recipient. When you start getting down on yourself, you’re hurting someone God loves.

And that’s wrong. Stop.

Know what? God would never call you names. Regardless of your mistakes! And God would never ask you to do anything He doesn’t do himself. If He asks us to think about the good in other people, then He’s thinking about the good things in us too.

Let’s take it a step further. God asks you to think Philippians 4:8 about yourself.

And now, dear brothers and sisters, one final thing. Fix your thoughts on what is true, and honorable, and right, and pure, and lovely, and admirable. Think about things that are excellent and worthy of praise. Phil 4:8 (NLT)

What about you is true, honorable, right, pure, lovely, and admirable?

Think on that! But don’t just think on that, FIX your thoughts on that. In other words, those thoughts about the good in you should consume the majority of your thoughts. When you “fix” something in your mind, your thoughts don’t move. They stay. They stay on the good.

Rather than trash yourself, treasure yourself.

Cause you are good stuff to think about and you’re good stuff talk about.

Let me know if this post has connected with you. Tell me about your struggle and your success in the area of talking about yourself. Pop your thoughts into the comment section! 


Why You Lose When You Compare Yourself to Others & How to STOP

It’s tempting isn’t it? Looking at someone and wondering just how well you measure up to them. Hair, appearance, size, position, talent, wealth, education, intellect, athletic prowess, people skills. The list is deep and it also goes wide. There’s no end when comparing yourself to the girl or guy next door. And if you do, let me tell you, you lose! Read on and I’ll explain. I’ll also show you how you can STOP comparing yourself to others. Let’s go!

When Walt Disney was a young school boy, his teacher saw him drawing pictures of flowers. She said, “They’re very nice Walter but don’t you know, flowers don’t have faces.” He looked up and said, “Mine do.” I love that! Even as a small boy, Walt Disney had the guts to stick up for who he was. He was true to himself. He did his own thing. And that’s probably one

of the reasons why he was so successful. He didn’t let anybody cramp his style.

Oh, but you do let people cramp your style, don’t you? I betcha just recently you were feeling pressured or feeling badly about yourself because you were not like someone else. You were deciding you don’t fit someone else’s image of who you should be. Have I got your number?

When you do either of these two things above, you miss out on who YOU are supposed to be! And that is so dangerous because you get the WRONG IDEA of who you’re supposed to be. You become confused and don’t know who you are.

When you compare yourself to others you get the wrong idea of who you’re supposed to be. You become confused and don’t know who you are.

There’s a story about a farm boy that I read in one of Chuck Swindoll’s books, who found an eagle’s nest with an egg in it. He took the egg from the nest, and when he got home, he put it under a hen along with her other eggs.

Since the eagle’s egg hatched among chicks, the eagle thought he was a chicken. He learned chicken behavior from his “mother” and scratched in the chicken yard along with his “siblings”. He didn’t know any better. And when he sometimes felt strange stirrings within him, thoughts, like hmm, “I think I walk a little different from the rest of the crowd,” or “I seem to have longer wings than everybody else” – he ignored those thoughts. When he began to realize he had different qualities and was different from the rest, he buried those thoughts too. After all, when he looked around him all he saw were chickens, so he thought he must behave like a chicken. Talk about pressure!

But then one day an eagle flew over the farm. The chicken yard eagle looked up and saw him. In that moment, he realized he had the same kind of stuff that that eagle did. He wanted to fly high. He wanted to go to the mountain peaks he saw in the distance. So he spread his wings, which were much larger and stronger than those of his siblings. Suddenly he understood that he was different. He was an eagle. He was meant to fly.

Though he had never flown before, he possessed the instinct and the capabilities. He spread his wings once more and he took off. He soared high…because he stopped looking around him. He finally discovered his true self.

How sad it would have been for him to continue comparing himself to the other chickens, never measuring up. And why would that be sad?

Because he wasn’t a chicken. He could never measure up and wasn’t supposed to!

He couldn’t walk like the chickens, he couldn’t cluck like the chickens. Hello? It’s because he wasn’t a chicken! And that could have left him down and discouraged thinking he wasn’t good enough.

You may be going through life comparing yourself to others. You’re feeling worthless and not good enough because you don’t walk like others, talk like others, and do things like others. Look, you’re not supposed to be like others.

You can’t fly like an eagle if your stuck on the ground trying to be like the other chickens! So, here’s how to get off the ground:

1. Make a List of Your Greatest Attributes & Abilities

This may sound silly, even cocky if you don’t know where I’m coming from with this, but reserve judgment till you get what I’m about to share with you. I remember driving down the road when I was 16 years old, listing all of my greatness. Now, don’t let that fool you. I wasn’t conceited or stuck on myself or anything like that. After giving myself a honest evaluation, I made a mental list of my good stuff. Great stuff. Because inside of everyone of us is great stuff. God made us with great stuff. You have greatness in you just like I do. You just have to see it. And when you do, you can make a list of your greatness too!

2. When you come up against thoughts of comparing – knock em down!

Resist the urge to measure yourself up against someone you see or that comes to mind. If you encounter Carey, an acquaintance in the shoe department at Macy’s, quit inspecting her outfit and trying to discover if those shoes are real Gucci stilettos. If they are, so what? You have bigger fish in your own frying pan. Look deep. Greatness is there. If you walk by Bill in the break room, don’t think, “If I were only as tall as him.” Stop it! Don’t let your mind go there! Let it go here: back to your list of your Greatest Attributes & Abilities. 

Focus on your Greatness. Soon you will see you have no reason to compare.

The more you see the great attributes and abilities that God has built into you, the less you will have need to measure them against someone elses.

Galations 6:4 says this:

“Let everyone be sure that he is doing his very best, for then he will have the personal satisfaction of work well done, and won’t need to compare himself with someone else.”

List your greatness and you’ll no longer need to compare! 

Did this hit home with you? Do you have any input or advice to add? Leave a reply. Thanks!

If you enjoyed this post, check out some related posts by clicking on this link: Are You Weird in a Good Way?

 

No doubt you have heard Murphy’s Law so often over the years that you believe it’s true. It goes like this:

“Nothing is as easy as it looks; everything takes longer than you expect; and if anything can go wrong, it will – at the worst possible moment.”

Now, go about your day savoring that line. Chew it up, swallow it, and know what? It will be true for you.

Thanks Murphy! Thanks for filling our heads with lies that become truth. Yes, lies, lies, lies that turn true! How does this happen? The Bible gives us a clue. It says, “As a man thinks in his heart, so he is.” What this means is whatever you are thinking about becomes true for you. So now you’re stuck, right? But only because Murphy’s Law is stuck in your head. There is a way out my friend. Let me show you how to reverse Murphy’s Law in your life.

The Week from Hell

Last week was one that could have been construed as one of Murphy’s masterpieces! I knew it was going to be a brutal workweek. Lots of extra work events on my calendar equals less time for coping with stress. I was already preparing mentally for the strain of events on my family and on me personally. But then the unexpected started piling up.

My husband’s cousin died. That was tough. We made plans to travel and spend the day with family for the funeral. We also had family fly in and stay with us. Great to see them, but because of my work schedule, I had very little time to visit with them and play hostess. (It was looking like Murphy was starting to mess with me.)

Then the dishwasher decided to catch on fire. Yep, burned two holes in the door. That was exciting! So my husband, bless his sweet heart, RIGHT at dinnertime, attempts to replace the dishwasher with a new one. Which means he’s got two dishwashers pulled out into the middle of the kitchen.

Picture this: hoses, parts, tools, and water scattered all over the floor. I’m trying to quickly make dinner around this mess for my kids, a friend my daughter brought home, and out-of-town relatives. Not to mention, this was all happening one hour before I was scheduled to speak at a youth event for 500 high-energy teenagers. Try keeping your head in the game with all that going on!

So that was Monday. I could have convinced myself Murphy was working overtime, especially when Tuesday brought its own surprise.

I jumped in the car to take my teenage kids shopping and our car started jerking like it was having convulsions. I drove it home on a wing and a prayer and got a mechanic to make a house call. I had to cancel appointments and meetings I had scheduled the next day because I had no wheels, putting me further behind in my workweek.

Mechanic comes, tinkers around, and can’t figure it out. Comes back on day two, tinkers around, and can’t figure it out. I’m wondering how many more appointments am I going to have to reschedule this week? Do you see where this could go? In my head it could go south pretty fast. It almost did – until I reversed Murphy’s Law.

How You Can Reverse Murphy’s Law:

1. Tell your brain what to think. 

Yes, you can do that! What you think about is under your control IF you decide to control it. Your choice. Take it. Decide Murphy is not out to get you. He’s dead anyway, what power has he over you? None. Decide you are not going to experience events that will take you down. To throw your thoughts in reverse: back up and look at your string of events differently.

2. Ask for Divine assistance. 

Never done this before? That’s ok. Start now. Ask God to help you out of your tough spots. He is more than willing to show you He cares. And He is more than ready to show you His stuff! He can turn your circumstances around in an instant. I know. He’s done it for me. He’s got a great track record. That’s how I know I can trust what the Bible says, “What the enemy intended for evil, God meant for good.” Murphy’s got nothing on you, or me, because God can take anything and turn it around.

Too often we believe Murphy’s Law as truth instead of believing God’s law as truth. What does Murphy know? He obviously didn’t know the scripture; “All things are possible for those who believe.” So with just that verse in mind, if you tell your mind to think you are going to escape your string of circumstances, you will. It just depends on whom you’re going to believe. God, or Murphy? You choose. Then notify your brain!

So, how do you reverse Murphy’s Law? …STOP believing Murphy’s Law!

Let’s put Murphy’s Law in Reverse: “Everything is possible if you believe; things can happen in an instant; and if something can go right, have faith that it will – at the best possible moment!”

Tell yourself to chew on that the next time life throws you a curve ball and you will reverse Murphy’s Law in your life. Murphy can’t touch you…unless you let him!

Has this worked for you? Talk to us. Leave your comments below. Thanks!

4 Bad Mood Busters

 

4 Bad Mood Busters

You’re in a bad mood? So what’s bugging you? Someone tick you off? Got a bill you can’t pay? Or did you just wake up that way today? It happens. Life sometimes stinks. If you’re looking for a lift, let me show you how to rise above a bad mood when it’s gripping you.

1. Focus on the Sweet Stuff

Yes, I said sweet, not sour. Oh, I know right now all you can taste is the sour and it’s really hard to get that taste out of your mouth. But let’s gargle a little and rinse it out. When you’ve got bad breath, you’re willing to let take a big slurp of mouthwash, right? In this case, you sip on some sweet thoughts and let it swish around in your mind and mouth.

Can’t find any mind-mouth wash? Let me get your started.

Mind-Mouth wash:

  • Who are 3 people who love you? List them.
  • What are 3 of your best accomplishments? Make note. Your building up speed here!
  • What are 3 things that you are looking forward to in the next few days? Mention them one by one. That was fun, right?

Now, if you can make a choice to think about the sweet things you just thought of instead of the sour stuff you were thinking about before – your mood will begin to change. I guarantee it.

Do you feel it? It’s happening already isn’t it? Is there a little smile beginning to form deep down on the inside if you? Oh, it’s coming. Wait for it. It will eventually make its way to your face. Let’s see what else you can do to bust that bad mood…

2. Find Your Thanks In Advance

Admit it, even smelly manure can be a good thing. It makes rockin fertilizer! Fertilize your mood as you look for the benefit behind the smelly stuff of life. This way, manure causes growth! Yeah baby!!!

What smells in your life right now? Here’s how to churn it into fertilizer:

You may not have the money today to pay your mortgage or rent, but you can be thankful that you have food in the fridge. What? There’s not much in there? I hear ya. You may not have the fridge stocked with food that floats your boat. Prime rib would really rock right now, huh? BUT, what IS in that fridge that you can be thankful for? A few eggs? Ok, thank God for those eggs. Leftovers from the night before? Ok, be thankful that meal stretched and you’re still feasting on it!

David talking to God in Psalm 16:2 says, “…All the good things I have are from you.” You get the point, no matter what is left in your fridge of life, thank God for what IS there. And if your fridge is empty, be thankful that you have a fridge and it’s ready to be filled up.

What are 3 things can you be thankful for today? Make a list.

I was driving down the road one day, and God asked me, “Are you going to wait till I give you everything you want before you praise me with everything you’ve got?” OUCH! I was withholding my thanks till I got what I wanted. Not good!

King David had it rough, but the guy praised God in advance. Psalm 13 starts out like this, “O Lord, how long will you forget me? Forever?…” but then he wakes up and smells the coffee. That chapter ends saying, “But, I trust in your unfailing love. I will rejoice because you have rescued me. I will sing to the Lord because he has been so good to me.” Now wait up! See, right there, David hadn’t been rescued yet. But David, the FUTURE king, had so much faith in the FUTURE; he speaks of it in PAST tense! Like he’s already got it! Whoa Nelly! Let’s get singing about our future! Find your thanks in advance.

3. Sing Your Thanks

When I’m in a sour mood, I find I have unknowingly shut off the “happy” music. Forgetting to hit play on my CD player grants me a sinking experience. Where to? Deeper into depths of despair. What you listen to creates an atmosphere inside you. So put some positive music in your ears because the song in your heart can bust up your bad mood. Especially if its a song speaking about the wonders and the good stuff of God. And bonus, it will eventually come out of your mouth and bust up other people’s bad moods.

I have two key people in my life who are constantly humming or singing. My best friend and my assistant do this without noticing it. I love being around the both of them. There they are just going about their business, humming in the background. And when they do, a smile goes off inside of me. My hums are off key, so when I hear theirs, it’s a welcomed treat! It lifts my spirit and brightens up my inside. Shhh, they had no idea! So sing, hum, put some tune to your thanks, it will sweeten the spot you’re in.

Here’s a great link to some incredible music that will bust up that bad mood. City of Life Worship on iTunes. Download it here:    http://itunes.apple.com/us/album/city-of-life-worship/id380856332

4. Talk Your Thanks

Finding it hard to convince yourself you have it good? Some say make a mental list. I say, speak out your list. If no one’s around, talk about your thanks to yourself. Say, I am glad I have…I am thankful for… Then graduate to talking about your thanks with others. Make it known. Talking about what you have, not what you don’t will bust up your bad mood. But talking about what you don’t have will keep you in a bad mood. I’m sure you have lots of stuff to be sad about, me too. But wake up. What you give attention to is what is in front of you. What is in front of you is what’s going to lead your mood. Push aside the sad stuff by putting the glad stuff in front. Taking your thoughts captive will get that smile creeping up out of your spirit and across your face.

When you need to bust up a bad mood, hit all four of these points and your mood will change. I absolutely guarantee it!

  1. Focus on the Sweet Stuff
  2. Find Your Thanks In Advance
  3. Sing Your Thanks
  4. Talk Your Thanks

PS, I love that your smile is making its way back to your face. Looking good!

How do you bust through a bad mood? Leave your tips below:


A Surefire Way to Know If Your Steps are REALLY Ordered by God
Have you heard someone declare that their day went exactly the way God wanted it to go because their steps are ordered of the Lord?! That’s a great thought, but do you ACTUALLY believe that we make the right decisions 100% of the time? I’m sure even those with the greatest intentions blow it a few times a day, if not more.

It cracks me up when friends say, “I didn’t expect my day to turn out like that, but it must have been meant to be.” Well, how do you know it was meant to be? Is every decision we make “meant to be”? Nope! Especially in hind sight realizing we screwed up. Just because your day went a certain way doesn’t mean it was meant to go that way! But how would you know?

Take for example, the choice to wait and hold the door open for someone instead of running full speed ahead to your car because you are late for an appointment. Or making that split second decision to take a call that comes in rather than continuing the conversation you’re having with your child. Who’s to say which was the path God ordered and which was you-ordered? Do your secret ambitions and motives play a part? Hmm. Do your hidden fears and insecurities subconsciously sway every decision you make? Yep. Does your selfishness ever get in the way from doing something that God wanted you to do? Yep again!

Look, if you are a believer, God definitely says He will order your steps. It’s a done deal. But if you don’t follow His orders, well then, you won’t be following His steps. It’s not rocket science.

We have all experienced a parent or guardian giving us direction or orders, right? Are you beginning to cringe as you think back to childhood? Remember the orders: “Go clean your room.”, “Take out the trash.”, “Make your bed.” I wonder, did you always choose obedience in following those orders? I’m guessing there were days you didn’t do as ordered. Me too! I was given orders but sometimes failed to carry them out. And then there were times direction was given but I chose to do my own thing. Same with God, He orders our steps, but that doesn’t mean we are following His orders.

As I started writing this article my iPad 2, which I am typing on, was in perfect condition. Just 2 weeks old, I had been handling it with kid gloves and taking especially good care of it. I decided to take a break and refill my coffee cup. Putting my new iPad 2 on the table beside me, I started into the house. Seconds later I heard a crash. Oh my gosh, NOOOO-OOOO!!! I ran out to the porch…and yes, I found my iPad 2 face down on the hard concrete.

Before I picked it up I said a prayer, “PLEEEEZZZZE GOD, NO DAMAGE, NO CRACKED SCREEN…” I slowly picked it up and turned it over. My heart sank. The corner was dented, the screen cracked, and I felt weak all over. All I could say was, “God?!!” Like, why? How come? Then I took a breath and thought, how stupid! How dumb of me to lay it on the table on top of my Kindle. It must have been sitting at a slight incline and within 20 seconds it slid right off the table.

So right now, as I type away on my cracked iPad screen, I’m wondering, did God really order my steps this morning? Of course He did. Did He mean for my iPad screen to crack? I don’t know. I may never know. Maybe He did. Maybe He didn’t! I do know He will turn it around for good, but that doesn’t necessarily mean He intended for it to happen.

Before I started my day, I asked for His wisdom to lead me. Before I began my tasks I asked for His direction. He seemed to be leading me. I truely believe He was. But did I make a mistake? Was my jugement clouded when I laid my iPad 2 down on top of a surface at an unseen angle? So, could that have been a step I took that God didn’t order? Probably. I may never know.

See, the decision I made not only broke my heart for a moment, it also caused me pain and a lot of other things. It will cost me time to get it repaired and it will probably cost me money. I would like to think God didn’t plan that for me because I walk in favor, right? Yes. But I know a scripture too, that says the rain falls on the just and the unjust. Even God’s children deal with disappointment and problems.

So what is a God fearing person to do to ensure their steps are in step with God’s?
Here’s what it takes:
Ask God to help you not only hear His orders, but to also help you FOLLOW His orders.
And know, even if you mess up, He’ll still be around. Look at what He promises you…

Psalms 37:23-24
23 The Lord directs the steps of the godly.
He delights in every detail of their lives.
24 Though they stumble, they will never fall,
for the Lord holds them by the hand.

So here’s the plan – ask God to reveal His orders to you each day. Do the best you can to follow them – and most likely your steps will be the right ones!

By the way, remember my cracked iPad screen? God turned my mistake around by giving me favor…my iPad was replaced at no cost! Thank you Apple and thank you God!!

I’d love to hear your thoughts about this. Leave your comments below.


Why We Need to Sweat the Small Stuff If We Want the Big Stuff
How can great leaders come out of nowhere? Ready? It’s because they have been hidden, plugging away at the small things first. Let that sink in. See, you don’t usually SEE a great leader in the making because you don’t SEE them taking care of the small stuff. The stuff behind the scenes. So when they finally do emerge, it’s like, “Hey, where did this chick come from?” “Does anyone know this guy? He seems to have come out of nowhere.” That’s right. They did come out of nowhere. They were busy taking care of the small stuff when all of a sudden heaven opened a door and BAM! They came into bigger things.

Small stuff is the stuff kings are made out of

Like King David, they’ve busied themselves for decades on the backside of a pasture, tending sheep, ankle-deep in manure, swatting flies, sweat dripping off their brow, and developing yucky yellow sweat st ains under their armpits. Then something shifts. They are given a throne. Prior they had anointing, but no crown. Now they have both. It’s because they paid the price. Majoring in the menial led to the magnificent! That small stuff is the stuff of kings.

My scary, ugly thought

I had a thought that scared the snot out of me one time. I was sitting on my back porch having a talk with God. I was tired of looking over my life and unfulfilled dreams. I actually said to God, “How come I’m more faithful to you than you are to me?!”  Whoa, I couldn’t believe I actually thought that. As soon as it shot out of my thinker, I repented. How brazen a thought! For a moment I actually believed that throughout the years, all of the ways I have been faithful, were more than how much God has been faithful to me. Yikes! How dare I think such a thing? After asking God for forgiveness, I wondered where that thought came from. Was I tired? Exhausted? Had I totally lost my mind? That’s not the right one to have! I was shocked at what was going on in my head.

Sticking with small stuff leads to the bigger better stuff

After I regrouped, I rediscovered once again, that it’s really the small things that are the big things. You may have heard of the book, “Don’t Sweat the Small Stuff”. Great title. But for our purposes here, we really do need to sweat the small stuff. Sweating the small stuff is a guaranteed lead to the big stuff.

How do I know? The Bible tells me so. A scripture in Matthew 25 says: “You have been faithful and trustworthy over a little; I will put you in charge of much.” Cool! If I work my butt off taking care of the things I’d rather not, I will eventually get to do what I’d rather do! (Well, right motives and good attitude do play an important part here too, so don’t leave that out.) All this to say…playing the part that no one else sees or gives a rip about is a lead-in to something greater. There are no short cuts, so quit looking for them.

God’s watching and smiling

Allow me to toss a little something to you from the book of Zachariah. It’s found in chapter 4, verse 10: “Do not despise the day of small beginnings. The Lord rejoices to see the work begin.”

This verse helps us reframe our manure filled pasture moments. It shows us that God is not only watching, but rejoicing. He’s got his eye on you, me, and all the others as we busy ourselves with the stuff of our pre-king seasons. Let’s keep it up. Our crowns are on order and they are just about ready for wear if we will stay at it long enough.

Soon someone will see you and say, “Hey, where did YOU come from?”

Have you found this to be true? Share your comment or story below.


Want to Get In Shape? Here’s How to – Just Do It!
I’ve been providing an exercise boot camp for someone who is near and dear to my heart this week. Struggling with getting into a regular exercise routine and healthy eating habits, she said, “I just need a boot camp!” At first I thought she was joking. But when she said it twice, I sprang into action. “Ok, you want a boot camp? Come stay with me for a week and I will give you a “Get Fit” boot camp! I’m no Jillian Michaels, but I bet I can help boot you into shape.”

So every morning this week, I have had her up at 4:30 a.m. for an hour work out. Along with eating healthy, we included a bonus workout in the evening, goal setting strategy sessions, and a good night’s sleep. Happy to say, she is doing great with this little kick start. I am especially proud of her. She has pushed beyond where she thought she could go!

Obviously, not everybody can come stay with me for a week. But those who have heard about it are intrigued. People ask if I have any tips that will help them get in shape. So let me offer one here and we’ll see where this goes. I might begin to blog some “getting fit” ideas regularly. So stay tuned.

I love the Nike slogan, “Just Do It!” It has become my motto. When it comes to exercise there are no excuses. If you want to get fit, exercise is no longer an option. You JUST DO IT!

My preferred workout a few years back was swimming. I used to swim every morning. Yes, EVERY morning. I swam in the rain. I swam in the hail. I swam in the cold.  I would take the plunge even when it was 20 degrees and frost covered the roof and ground. (Don’t laugh; it does get somewhat cold in Florida 😉 ) I swam even when I didn’t feel like it. Nothing stopped me. Every morning at 5am I would stand at the edge of the pool and dive in. Sometimes it would take me 20 minutes after I got out to stop shivering. It was so exhilarating and what a rush! My daughter asked me one time, “Mom, how do you do it?” My answer was: I just don’t think about it! If you think about how cold it’s going to be, you won’t do it. So don’t think, don’t debate, just jump in. In other words…JUST DO IT!

I have decided that exercise is not an option, that’s how I “Just Do It”. Do you see exercise as optional? If so, you might be having trouble getting up early in the mornings to work out. Put a plan in place. Before you go to bed put out your exercise clothes and decide what kind of workout you are going to do in the morning. Then when the alarm goes off you won’t be lying in bed wasting time debating what you are going to do. If you’re working out at night, make sure you don’t let the evening get away from you. Just Do It! Even if it’s hard getting started, you will always feel better after you are done.

So if YOU want to get fit, remember:

  • Exercise is NOT an option
  • Put a plan in place
  • Just Do It!

Paul says in I Corinthians 9:26 (The Message): “I don’t know about you, but I’m running hard for the finish line. I’m giving it everything I’ve got. No sloppy living for me! I’m staying alert and in top condition…” Here’s a guy who too, lived by the motto: JUST DO IT! You can too!