Thursday, September 1, 2016

Under New Ownership

 Gracious and loving Father, I thank you for knowing me and all the 
challenges set before me. Thank you for caring about each and every one of them. Help me to replace all the worries and stress with wholehearted trust in You.  Thank you for causing all things to work for good.  I praise You Lord, only you can make all things work for my good.  Bless my friends, family, and colleagues that they may live stress free lives, casting all their cares upon You.

Help us stand boldly in your sufficient grace. In the name of Christ Jesus, Amen.

Under New Ownership by Veronica Garrett 

Do you not know that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit, who is in you, whom you have received from God? You are not your own; you were bought at a price. Therefore honor God with your body.  1 Corinthians 6:19-20

When an existing establishment is purchased there is usually some notice of new ownership.  The prior owner is no longer able to demonstrate authority over the decisions.  In fact, quite often the business has a sign that reads "under new management".  This allows all patrons to know that there has been some exchange of purchase as well as authority. 
The previous owner does not have authority to determine how the business should be ran.  He would be completely out of order if he were attempting to implement his ideas in the new owner's establishment.  He has forfeited the right to make such decisions.  In asmuch as he no longer has the power to set forth direction, he also is not responsible for the outcome. The new management is responsible for setting the direction as well as the success of the business.
In the life of a Christian there is a point of exchange when we, through a surrendering of will, acknowledge that we are under new ownership.  Many believers never experience this exchange and if you must ponder whether or not you have, you haven't. Acknowledging that you haven't allows the opportunity for the future.  
Many people arrive at this point of surrender due to some great hardship, or burden they find to difficult to bear.  It goes against the natural man and his desire to surrender himself completely to anything.  From the Garden of Eden, mankind has always attempted to exert his independence. The truth is the cost is seemingly high, we give up our right to choose and decide to the One who owns us.
There is such a freedom in saying, my times are in His hands.  In the face of disaster we are certain that He takes full responsiblity for the outcome because we submit ourselves to His ownership.  At times He chooses to glorify Himself in ways that make us weak. And then He reveals Himself in ways that we rejoice in His strength. 
Although it appears as the simple life, it is the most exhilarating, adventuruous journey that one could ever imagine.  Joyous tears and exuberant celebrations are a common stay in the mist of hardship and trials because His loving arms are near. 
At times others want an answer, what is the plan?  Very often the answer is, "He hasn't told me yet".  The most amazing thing is, as your primary focus is being about His business, you can rest assure that He takes care of yours in greater detail than you can. The signs of being Under New Management overflows into a life of everyone who yields to the new Owner.

Thursday, August 25, 2016

My Deliverer

 O God, You are my God, O I bow down to worship you ! The King  
of kings, the Lord of lords! My soul exalts thee Oh Lord, you are 
the God of all creation. Please bless families during these 
challenging times. Help us to be steadfast in trusting you. Bless 
marriages and families. Help couples to guard their hearts and 
affections for one another. Give singles grace to resist temptation 
and stand firm in your sufficient grace. Loving Father, Thank you 
for being my Deliverer. In Jesus' name, Amen.

My Deliverer by Veronica Garrett 
Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego replied to the king, "O Nebuchadnezzar, we do not need to defend ourselves before you in this matter. If we are thrown into the blazing furnace, the God we serve is able to save us from it, and he will rescue us from your hand, O king. But even if he does not, we want you to know, O king, that we will not serve your gods or worship the image of gold you have set up."  Daniel 3:16-18

Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego had refused to bow down to the golden statue. The king gave them one last chance to bow down and they responded by saying we don't need to defend ourselves before you in this matter.  In fact, they replied, if we are thrown into the furnace the God we serve can deliver us from it, He can deliver us through it or He can deliver us by it, but we will not serve your gods or worship the golden image of yours.  When I am in a bad situation I really want to be delivered from it but I know that my God can deliver me from it, through it, or by it.
Quite often we have the idea that geniune faith is hoping strongly toward the outcome we so desire.  It is almost as though we project our greatest desire upon God and demand that He comes through.  That is not the true essence of faith.  Faith doesn't demand an outcome it trust inspite of the outcome.  It is erroneous to think that people aren't healed simply because they don't believe hard enough.  In many cases their infirmity is a part of God's greater purpose.  He is glorified by it--His strength is made perfect in weakness. The apostle Paul wrote much of the New Testament and yet he suffered an infirmity.  Inspite of our greatest desire, true faith is believing that after we have asked for what we desire whatever God allows we will trust Him with the outcome for His greater purpose.  
When I say that He is my Deliverer I have to know that He can deliver me from a situation and allow me to avoid all the pain and struggle associated with it.  He miraculously snatches me from the midst of a great trial. At the same time I must understand that He can deliver me through it and allow me to experience hardship and great adversity to demonstrate His grace, His strength and His power. My times are always in His hands. And inspite of many teachings on healing when my time comes to enter the pearly gates and walk the streets of gold He can deliver me by whatever it is and bring me to Himself.  Glory to the finished work on calvary that death has no power over me! It is the last enemy that Christ will destroy.
No one ever asks to be placed in the fiery furnace but when God delivers you through something that is very challenging there is kingdom glory at stake. The king had the three men bound and thrown into the fiery furnace but then he saw four unbound men walking around in the fiery furnace.  When he called for the three men to come out of the furnace he was surprised by what he saw.  Not only did they come out, they came out without a singed hair, without a scorched robe, and without the smell of smoke.  God was glorified! In the end King Nebuchadnezzar praised their God and acknowledged that He had protected them.  He even promoted Shadrach, Meschach, and Abednego. 

It is my natural human desire to avoid going through hardship or struggle.  And yet I know that many deepest spiritual deposits happen during the most challenging days. I'm grateful to God that when He deliver's you through a thing He is in the thick of it with you.  Not only has He delivered me from my sins and the penalty they deserve. My Deliverer is capable of delivering me from,through or by whatever life may bring. Glory to His Name!

Thursday, August 18, 2016

A Single Issue

A Single Issue by Veronica Garrett 
The king of Egypt said to the Hebrew midwives, whose names were Shiphrah and Puah, "When you help the Hebrew women in childbirth and observe them on the delivery stool, if it is a boy, kill him; but if it is a girl, let her live." The midwives, however, feared God and did not do what the king of Egypt had told them to do; they let the boys live. Exodus 1:15-17

In recent months I came face to face with a horrific, startling truth.  What is the #1 cause of death for African Americans?  Heart disease, Cancer, or Violence?  None of the above.  The leading cause of death for African Americans is abortion.  It's been said that the most unsafe place for an African American child in this country is in it's mother's womb.  In Proverbs 6:17, one of the seven things that the Lord hates-- hands that shed innocent blood.  That we might launch a prayer campaign for the hearts and minds of mothers and fathers to honor God in trying times.
In the mist of great oppression the Israelites were fruitful and multiplied greatly  The new Egyptian king's plan included killing the Hebrew baby boy's in his effort to weaken the Israelites.  He instructed the Hebrew midwives to kill the babies but they feared God and did not do what the king of Egypt told them to.  They let the boys live.  So then the king of Egypt summoned the midwives and asked them, "why have you done this? Why have you let the boys live? "  
The midwives answered Pharaoh, Hebrew women aren't like the Egyptians.  The give birth before the midwives arrive.  In Exodus 1:20, God was kind to the midwives and because they feared Him, he gave them families of their own. Many men and women have failed to make the right decision in a difficult time and yet God's forgiveness is available to all that ask. We cannot out sin the grace of God.  In fact every mother and father who has lost a infant/young child to death, to include abortion or miscarriage will someday be reunited with that child in heaven if the mother and father have receive Jesus Christ. However, we cannot solve problems that we are not willing to acknowledge.  Our hearts should be broken before the Lord as well as for the 1,400 black babies that die each day due to abortion.   Tragedy is never an issue of race and all babies matter as much as the black ones.  The startling truth is the affect on the African American baby are disproportionally greater than all other races combined.
In the black community and this is a statistic that most people don't know, is that over 1400 black babies a day are lynched out of their mother's womb. At the end of the day when the sun goes down today, when it goes down tomorrow, another 1400 black babies would have died. That is devastating our community. Here's what's happening. Demographers have said to us this fact, that it takes 2.1 children per family in order for a family to replace itself -- 2.1. In America because of Roe v Wade in the white community it is down to 1.8. Demographers tell us when it goes to 1.8, it is at a place called "irreversible reduction." It takes about 100 years to turn it back around. We have reached in the white community irreversible reduction. In the black community it is 0.9. We're having 0.9 babies per family -- that's called elimination. And that has been the goal and the mission of the eugenics movement in America and the genocide that is going on by Margaret Sanger and the Planned Parenthood group and the abortion industry has targeted the black community.  From the time that Margaret Sanger stepped her foot on the scene, the eugenicists found in her an ally to produce a genocidal holocaust in the black community. In the 1960s and the 1970s, black people were resisting it and they took to the streets.  And most people don't know the Black Panthers came into existence for one reason, to run Planned Parenthood out of our community. That's why they came into existence. Of course, they had some other political ideologies that were on the left but nonetheless, the reason why they came in was to try to push Planned Parenthood out because they realized that these people were targeting our babies and our women and they have been successful and their success has been because of a deception.
May our hearts be filled with love and compassion for the unborn as well as those who have made the decision to abort.  I pray to God for a spiritual awakening in the body of Christ.  May women in the world become as resolved as the Hebrew women of days passed.  I believe that abortion which being referred to as a single issue is an understatement.  Ending the lives of 1400 babies each day is more than a single issue.    

Thursday, August 11, 2016

What Becomes of A Rebel?

March 22, 2010
What Becomes of A Rebel?



 Merciful Father, 
Teach me to trust and obey You. Above all circumstance and situation give me 
wisdom and grace to believe your word more than the challenges that lie before me.  I 
know that you are the good Shephard and you lead and guide your sheep.  Lead me, 
Lord.  Teach me your ways so that I may walk in them. In Jesus' name, Amen.

What Becomes of A Rebel ?by Veronica Garrett 

 22 But Samuel replied: 
       "Does the LORD delight in burnt offerings and sacrifices 
       as much as in obeying the voice of the LORD ? 
       To obey is better than sacrifice, 
       and to heed is better than the fat of rams. 

 23 For rebellion is like the sin of divination, 
       and arrogance like the evil of idolatry. 
       Because you have rejected the word of the LORD, 
       he has rejected you as king."  1Samuel 15: 22-23
   Any person or group of people who set their face to rebel against God will experience the consequence of this decision.  King Saul had received instruction through the prophet Samuel from the Lord to destroy the Amalekites and everything that belonged to them. The instructions were clear and concise.  Samuel said to Saul, "I am the one the LORD sent to anoint you king over his people Israel; so listen now to the message from the LORD. This is what the LORD Almighty says: 'I will punish the Amalekites for what they did to Israel when they waylaid them as they came up from Egypt.  Now go, attack the Amalekites and totally destroy  everything that belongs to them. Do not spare them; put to death men and women, children and infants, cattle and sheep, camels and donkeys.' " (1 Samuel 15:1-3)

When Saul attacked the Amalekites he took King Agag alive and he also took the best of the sheep, cattle, fat calves and lambs.  He disobeyed God's instructions not to take any plunder and to kill all the people.  In many cases God allowed his people to take plunder from war but when he said don't touch it He meant it.  These were holy wars.  As if it isn't bad enough that Saul has disobeyed God, when confronted by Samuel he says he was going to use the best of the plunder to make an offering to God.  Offer something he wasn't suppose to have.  Leaving King Agag alive is like killing all the members of a gang and letting their leader live.
This is when Saul learns that obedience is better than sacrifice because his decision to rebel against God caused him his leadership position. In Christiandom, quite naturally we frown on idolatry and witchcraft but rebeling against God is comparable to these sins.  Quite often we aren't loud and obnoxious about it, we just go our own way when God is instructing us differently.  How costly is this? In Saul's case, the Amalekites were a people who were against what was godly.  The nice guy Saul decided to let their leader, King Agag live.
First of all, the Amalekites had attacked the Israelites after they fled from Egypt so God was going to punish them using Saul. In Exodus 17:8-16, Joshua fought the Amalekites and as long as Moses arm was held up he was victorious.  In fact Aaron and Hur held up Moses' hand as he grew tired to ensure victory. When Moses built the altar the LORD is my Banner,  He said, "For hands were lifted up to the throne of the LORD. The LORD will be at war against the Amalekites from generation to generation."  
We continue to see the impact of Saul's disobedience because the task that he had been given by God was to completely destroy this people.  And yet in the story of Queen Esther we find them still alive. In the book of Esther, Haman son of Hammedatha, the Agagite, is the adversary that plots to kill the entire Jewish race because Mordecai the Jew, would not bow down to him. It is believed that Haman was an Amalekite and a descendant of Agag. 
As I've attempted to connect the dots of how costly Saul's disobedience was to the Israelites, I can look more closely to my own life.  More often than not there are lasting consequence of being a rebel.  The Lord our God has never asked us to violate His principles to make an offering to Him. It's like robbing a bank and giving a large tithe and offering from your spoils.  Oddly as it seems,  we are frequently faced with the choice to trust and obey God or to rebel and sacrifice to Him.  We all have an idea of what happens to a rebel.  It's not good.  Regardless to how hard a road and how desperate the situation obedience is always better than sacrifice.

Thursday, August 4, 2016

An Inspired Word


Loving Father, Thank you for maintaining your love for me. Thank you for
a love that never changes.  I'm convinced that nothing can separate me
from your love-not trial, hardship or death, not things past or even
things to come. And when I blow it you already knew I would blow it and
yet you love me so.  Thank you for Jesus, my wonderful Savior. I'm so
grateful for His redeeming love.  I know that knowledge puffs up but
love builds up so I'm asking you to build me up in love. Bless the
president, senators, representatives, governors, mayors,and all leaders
in this country. Please  give them wisdom and knowledge. In Jesus' name.

An Inspired Word by Veronica Garrett

All Scripture is God-breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking,

correcting and training in righteousness,so that the man of God may be
thoroughly equipped for every good work. 2 Timothy 3:16-17

Most recently there have been many verbal attacks on "organized
religion".  The ideology of the religious people has been hindering the
plans of liberal and secular views.  There are many occasions when Bible
believing Christians are challenged by their open minded counterparts.
We are likely to hear accusations as to whether the Bible is true or
suggestions that parts of the Bible have been removed.
The truth about the Bible is it is the best selling, most read book of
all times.  There is more physical evidence than every before of it's
accuracy.  It is a book that was cannonized in completion. It has been
translated into more languages than any other book. Some try to negate
the authority of scripture by imply that if the writer wasn't Jesus then
the text is subject to be errant.  And yet in 2 Peter 1:20-21 we learn,
"Above all, you must understand that no prophecy of Scripture came about
by the prophet's own interpretation. For prophecy never had its origin
in the will of man, but men spoke from God as they were carried along by
the Holy Spirit." (2 Peter 1:20-21) God's word provides direction for us
to navigate through life. Liken to my GPS, I am not responsible of
remembering the location of every precept.  However, it is my weapon and
spiritual navigator, in order to live victoriously I must know how to
use it.  In 2 Peter 2, we learn that false teachers come into our mist
who are greedy, immoral and prey on the weak.  These teachers appeal to
the sinful nature and often build large ministries on what is false. Far
too often these false teachings are so influential because the people of
God do not measure them against the truth of God's word. Hebrews 4:12
says, "For the word of God is living and active. Sharper than any
double-edged sword, it penetrates even to dividing soul and spirit,
joints and marrow; it judges the thoughts and attitudes of the heart."
We live in a time where their is a spirit of rebelliousness that has
flooded the hearts of men and women. A time when the Bible is being
rewritten to be gender neutral to prescribe to a modern way. Many
believe that the Bible is blocking their freedom when those of us who
study God's word know that it perserves true freedom.  Only when Christ
has set us free are we free indeed. Every Bible believing Christian
needs to study God's word for themselves. 

In the 8 & 9 chapter of Nehemiah, after Ezra had read the book of the
Law of Moses to the people the Israelites realized they had failed to
follow God's law. The hearts of the people had turned so far from God
until they were reaping the consequence of their disobedience.  They
were slaves in a land that God had given to their forefathers due to
their sin. When we allow God's word to teach us, rebuke us, correct us
and train us then and only then are we thoroughly equipped for any good
work.  When we (Christians) turn our backs on God's word nothing works.

Thursday, July 28, 2016

Fruit From The Branches

Fruit from the Branches



 Wonderful, Master, Creator, Sustainer, Counselor, Strong Tower, Mighty God, Everlasting 
Father,  Worship belongs to you O 
Lord, Let everything that has breathe praise you Lord!  Thank 
you for health, protection and provision. Thank you for supplying my every need. Please bless 
my Pastor, his family, church leaders, husband, and fathers. Lead and guide them and give 
them wisdom to lead your people in a way that demonstrates your love. Please give me grace 
to accomplish the tasks set before me today. In Jesus' name I pray, Amen.

                            Fruit From The Branches by Veronica Garrett 
I am the vine; you are the branches. If a man remains in me and I in him, he will bear much fruit; apart from me you can do nothing. If anyone does not remain in me, he is like a branch that is thrown away and withers; such branches are picked up, thrown into the fire and burned. If you remain in me and my words remain in you, ask whatever you wish, and it will be given you. This is to my Father's glory, that you bear much fruit, showing yourselves to be my disciples.    John 15:5-8

Appearance counts for a great deal in the western world. People spend billions to look beautiful in our world.  In fact, we name the most beautiful people each year, inspite of the fact that many of them have reconstructed their entire faces and bodies with plastic surgery. That leaves many of us thinking appearance is everything. Have you ever bought fruit that was pleasing to the eye and you couldn't wait to bite into it? Were you eager to eat the fruit that looked very delicious only to be disappointed by its taste? This fruit looked ripe but it was removed from tree or vine a little too soon. 
Far too often kingdom building is strategized in great detail without emphatic reliance and dependency upon the beauty of our wonderful Savior. Societal influence and ideology can deceive the people of God into thinking we can construct beauty that will draw the hearts of men towards God without Him.  It is true that remaining close to Jesus Christ causes us to flourish and be fruitful in the most unlikely places. The men and women who have made the greatest impressions on my life are those whose personal relationship with the Lord speak to them being branches close to the Vine. 
Scripture clearly states we can do nothing apart from the Vine.  It  reminds me of faux fruit arrangements on display as a table centerpiece.  The eye may be tricked for a few moments to believe the fruit is real but when we pick it up it becomes obvious to lack nutritious value. When we are close to the Vine (Christ) the byproduct is we are fruitful.  When our lives are bearing much fruit its clear that we are close to the Vine. The Gardener (God) ensures that those who remain in the Vine bear much fruit. Quite naturally believers can focus less on how to be fruitfulness and more on a close relationship with Christ. Our efforts can be compared to decorative fruit when they lack a Christ connection. 

Thursday, July 21, 2016

Who Is This?

Who Is This?



  O God, Worthy are you to be esteemed and exalted! You are above all kingdoms and created things. Please forgive me of my sins and cleanse me of all my unrighteous ways. Create in me a clean heart and renew a right spirit within me. Bless pastors, ministers and teachers that they may walk in and teach the uncompromising Truth. Lead and guide me that I may walk in obedience to you Lord. In Jesus' name I pray, Amen.  

Who Is This? by Veronica Garrett 

   He got up and rebuked the wind and the raging waters; the storm subsided, and all was calm. "Where is your faith?" he asked his disciples.
      In fear and amazement they asked one another, "Who is this? He commands even the winds and the water, and they obey him."  Luke 8:24-25

If you've walked with Jesus you realize that His ability far exceeds what we expect of Him. Quite often it is during a storm that God reveals himself to us in a new way.  We spend many hours praying that he removes us from the storm and yet there is nothing more precious to us than the moment Jesus speaks peace be still to our storm.  It becomes a life defining moment and surely God reveals himself to us in the storm. We could have never known Him as such without the storm. The disciples knew that Jesus could perform miracles but he kept blowing their mind as they saw them unfold.
One day Jesus told his disciples, "Let's go over to the other side of the lake." They got into a
boat and sailed while Jesus fell asleep. A fierce windstorm came onto the lake and they were in great danger.  
The disciples went and woke Jesus saying, "Master, Master, we're going to drown!"  When Jesus got up he rebuked the wind and waters and everything was calm. 
Jesus asked his disciples, "where is your faith?"  They looked at each other in fear and amazement and said "Who is this?" He commands and even the winds and water obey him. 
There are times in life when storms are raging and we are doing our best to stick the course and keep the faith.  As I read this passage I noticed that the first thing Jesus told his disciples is let us go to the other side.  Since Jesus had already told them they were going to the other side, they were going regardless of the storm and it's threat. His words are always true. 
These are times when we are in a situation and He says it's going to be alright.  And that is all that we have to hold on to. Isn't it enough to have a word from the Lord? The threat is real and there is no evidence of Him working on our behalf and yet by faith we must hear the voice of God and to know that He is above all- yes, even the raging winds and the waves obey Him.  The question is not if but when, and the answer is whenever He determines, He will speak peace be still and the storm has to go away.

 As His disciples we are always learning of him.  It is often during hardships that we are watching closely enough to see the miracle of God unfold right before our very eyes. When God reveals himself to us once more, we are prepared once again to answer the question, Who is this?