Be Careful...


      By now, most of us in the worship community have heard the announcement from Israel Hougton about recent events in his life. The responses from many in the church range from support and prayer to downright condemnation, while others are not quite sure what to do. But I have news...God has already told us what to do.

     In 1 Corinthians 10, Paul speaks about the Israelites who followed Moses and the consequences of their actions that displeased God. They all started with the same spiritual food and drink, but somewhere along the way they started doing their own thing, which caused calamity to come upon them. After describing their fate, Paul reminds us that what happened to them were examples written down as warnings for us, and the modern language tells us to check ourselves if we think we are standing. In other words, if any of us feels that we would never do any of the things that the Israelites were involved in, think again...
 These things happened to them as examples for us.
They were written down to warn us who live at the end of the age.

If you think you are standing strong, be careful not to fall. The temptations in your life are no different from what others experience. And God is faithful. He will not allow the temptation to be more than you can stand. When you are tempted, he will show you a way out so that you can endure.

~1 Cor 10:11-13 (NLT)

     There is nothing that one individual has gone through at one time that hasn't happened to another. Only God knows why people make the bad decisions that they make, even when a way of the situation is always available. It's not our job to figure that out for anyone, but it is ours to learn from their mistakes. It's not our place to censor or judge them, it's our place to humble ourselves and remember that the same thing can happen to us. No rational thinking person wakes up one morning and decides to do something that will destroy their family, ruin their reputation, and bring their ministry down. There is always a path to destruction that starts at a blind spot. What's yours? 

     Avoid the temptation to speculate, tear down or have a "holier-than-thou" attitude when you hear about someone who has sinned. The enemy is always looking for opportunities to knock us down from our high place. He's looking for you, too. He's watching to see what he can use, who he can send your way to take you out and shame you. He hates the worship of God; He hates God and all people; He hates when people worship God. His goal is to steal, kill and destroy completely, including those who lead others to worship God. Don't help the enemy!




Be Prepared!

Happy 2017! I took a break from blogging, but I'm back! I promise to be more present this year. Here is a repost from last January. Keep worshiping Christ!

   If you won’t plow in the cold, you won’t eat at the harvest.
Proverbs 20:4 (TLB)
 I recently attended a program where someone I knew was going to minister in praise dance. We both knew that she had a love for dance, and was called to dance for the Lord, but had challenges with taking advantage of available resources that would help her learn more about what she was called to do. Her work and life schedule was extremely busy, so she bought a DVD to work on at home and never got around to it. Every time she was invited to a workshop or class, she was always doing something else...still she had a love and a calling to dance.
     At the program, she was beautifully attired and had prepared her heart with prayer. The music started, and then something went wrong. She froze. Not knowing what to do, she began moving randomly and nervously until the music finished. That had to have been one of the longest 5 minutes of her life!
     Afterwards, she realized what had gone wrong. She hadn't prepared herself  with knowledge beforehand. All of the opportunities she had to learn about her ministry weren't taken seriously. Although she meant well, the message didn't get to the people due to lack of preparation. That day, she learned that it takes more than emotion to bring a message in public ministry. We can all learn a lesson from that experience.
     In the first week of the New Year, let's prepare ourselves for what we plan to do. If a class is needed, please go. If there are no local classes or transportation available, many ministries offer DVD's for sale at reasonable prices. If funds are tight, There are short instructional videos on YouTube that can be watched for free. There's never an excuse for lack of preparation! Even on short notice, if you have been practicing already, you can minister a dance with God's guidance based on what you already know, that will bless people. If you are really serious about ministry, you'll find a way to prepare yourself to be effective, or wait until you can make the time commitment. You don't have to be a professional dancer to minister in dance, but it's necessary to know something about what you are doing, so that your message is clear. Very few people are able to do this without some type of basic knowledge of movement. But, if you want to learn, there is lots of information that is easy to find. (You can type in "dance ministry instruction" in your web browser or on You Tube, and many pages will come up).
     If you are looking for dance ministry resources, please look at some of the links on the blog page that may be of interest. Be prepared in 2016!