This blog is brought to you by Dare 2 Be Different Int'l out of St. Kitts - West Indies. It aims to provide a sense of hope, motivation and encouragement to the readers during this challenging time in our world's history. Using stories from the Bible and real life examples, readers would be motivated to go on, as they realize that others endured similar situations and triumphed because of God's help and they can too.
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O Israel, return unto the LORD thy God; for thou hast fallen by thine iniquity. (Hosea 14:1 KJV)
When I was younger, I don't know why, but it always thrilled my heart to see my parents uncover our LP Record Player and play one of the songs from the many records they had. I loved the 'oldie-goldies.' Probably that's why I still love them today. I remember vividly, some of the words of a song that encouraged persons to stop running from God. This is what one verse and the chorus said.
You've been running running for a long long time,
You've been running running with no peace of mind,
You regret the day you turned away and became... a fugitive from God
Why don't you turn turn turn around, why do you roam?
Can't you see God the Father, waits to welcome you home
You were never meant to walk the path you've trod,
How long will you run away...a fugitive from God? (AUTHOR UNKNOWN)
Friend, we all make mistakes in life. We do things we shouldn't do. We say things we shouldn't say. We go places where we shouldn't go. Et cetera, Et cetera, Et cetera.
Ever since Adam and Eve disobeyed God in the Garden in the book of Genesis, sin has constantly shown it's ugly face in the lives of many. From Cain slaying his brother to the stealing of Esau's birthright. From David sinning with Bathsheba to Peter cursing and saying he didn't know The Christ.
There is something that should encourage all of us though. When Jesus came to earth and died on the cross - Pardon for sin and a peace that endureth came along. Forgiveness and grace were also part of the package too. You know friend, you can have God's peace TODAY. You can have a new HOPE today.
I am fully aware that all our our devotionals and blog entries are translated into over 53 diffrent languages and distributed GLOBALLY. You may be reading this Hope Devotional in a country where you don't have freedom of worship. I want you to know that God still loves you and he wants you to TURN TO HIM.
Probably, you once sang in a church choir, served on the deacon board, preached from the pulpit, witnessed on the street, attended church regularly. Then somewhere along life's road, you slipped up and fell. When you fell, no member or minister or pastor came and looked for you to restore you and you fell deeper in your hole. You probably got pregnant while in church or cheated on your husband or wife and felt too embarrassed to ever go back.
I know what you're talking about. It was just a few weeks back, I was able to help restore a backslider and encourage HIM to RETURN UNTO THE LORD while on a hospital bed at The JNF Hospital in St. Kitts. This is what he said. "You know brother, I made my mistake. I did my wrong and I know it wasn't right. I felt ashamed and wanted to change long ago but just needed some encouragement. The Pastor or Leaders NEVER came to see me. Honestly I think the Churches of TODAY are too busy with activities and making money, but not busy trying to save a soul like you are doing today. You don't see pastors much on the road now. I've always hear of your ministry Dare 2 Be Different International everywhere and how involved you are with all sorts of things. It is shocking, really shocking to see that you still have time to come visit the hospital as you're doing now. Pastors of today are too busy for us folks. They are on the pulpit, in their big rides, or in their offices. Things have changed a lot from my day."
The gentleman was alone in his room and this is what he said as he closed. "You know sir, God sent you here for a reason. To find this one lost coin. You are doing a good work for a young man- Don't Stop and Don't turn like them!"
Honestly, that was a day that I didn't feel like going to the hospital. I was busy on my computer. Thank God I went. As I gave the man encouragement then, I give encouragement to you now.
God still loves you. No matter what you've done, or the state that you're in. No matter what the 'bad mouthers' and 'pull-downers' are saying. There is probably one sitting next to you right now in your office. When you look out your bedroom window, you can see them hanging out some clothes. Stop letting PEOPLE make you afraid of connecting to JESUS - THE TRUE HOPE.
He longs to RESCUE you once you ask him and mean it from the bottom of your heart. Stop running from the LORD - RETURN!
But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you. (Matthew 6:33 KJV)
While in the middle of a sensitive business task yesterday, God stopped me and told me what he wanted me to share on today. I wondered why he had decided to do that, but I didn't question him, I paused from my work and started to write. You see friend, no matter how much you like these readings, I am not Superman. I am not perfect. I feel down sometimes. I have my faults. I am no different to you. I have my struggles too. My head hurts at times. I sometimes worry.
There is something I want us all to know though. God puts different people in our lives at different seasons to be our spiritual support and strength and guide. Sometimes they may SEEM annoying, but they are just there to help. On July 15th 2011, during the afternoon hours, I sat in my office chair depressed and discouraged about how slow business had become. God then led me to contact the first lady of our church, Sister Kaywana Saunders. She had just the word for me. When she responded to encourage me, I had no choice but to use my large format printer and print those words out on poster paper that I use when printing jobs, and stick it on my office wall. This is what she said.
"Pastor, the blessing comes when we seek first God's Kingdom. You have already heard what the Father is requiring of you to do. SO JUST DO IT! And look out for the added things in his season.
I believe that God has called you to be a successful businessman, so that you will be able to raise up other Kingdom successful business persons. But you see, there is the birth of the vision, the death of the vision and the resurrection of the vision.
Once the vision is from God, it will enlarge and spread out, because God is not a God who speaks small things into existence. Then there is the death of the vision, that's the time when it looks like nothing is happening in the natural, it looks like you're headed wrong, it looks like everyone has turned their backs on you, notice I said IT LOOKS LIKE!
But if you really go a little closer and really look, you will see, that during the hard times when it Looked Like nothing was happening, the seed or the vision was making it roots down in the earth, so that it would be able to anchor itself through hard times. My brother, just when you think it is all over. The business springs back up! Resurrection comes! Take into consideration Jesus’ Life and Take into consideration the life process of a seed.
You will be O.K because the word says you will be like a tree planted by the rivers of water that bringeth forth its fruits in its season, your leaves shall not wither and whatsoever Khrystus Wallace does shall prosper.
My brother, you can't have the glory without the story, and you can't have the testimony without the test. Hang in there! Your Best is Still Yet to come!"
I know when Sister Kay opens her email today, she would probably want to chastise me for sending her message to all of my readers all across the world because she prefers to be quiet and not publicized, except when she is using her Prayer Warrior Gift. God just didn't allow me to write an anonymous devotional today. I don't know why, but he just didn't. Friend, the words she gave to me, are for you too. This trying season is just preparing for us a NEW TESTIMONY in a NEW SEASON that is ahead. As Sister Kay said, "you can't have the glory without the story and you can't have the testimony without the test. Hang in there! Your Best is Still Yet to come!"
Sister Kaywana Saunders is First Lady at The Unique Touch Christian Centre, Romney Ground, Sandy Point, St. Kitts
Who remembered us in our low estate: for his mercy endureth for ever: (Psalm 136:23 KJV)
As I turned this morning and started giving thanks to God for giving me and those who are alive, another day to worship him, he led me to a passage of scripture in Psalm 136. It's always nice to start your day with a little devotion. This gives you encouragement, empowerment and guidance for the hours ahead. As I read through Psalm 136, beginning to end, I noticed it wasn't a popular passage like many of those we could recite from our memory. It did hold much truth and encouragement though. At the end of every single verse, repetition of the phrase, "for his mercy endureth for ever," was consistent. According to English teachers, repetition is always good for emphasis. This is why I believe the writer wanted his readers to know, despite what ever challenges and obstacles we may face in life, God's mercy will endure for ever. As if not to leave us hanging and wondering, the writer gives several stories of how God had helped and delivered throughout Bible times and some of the great things he had done with his infinite power. Psalm 136:7 To him that made great lights: for his mercy endureth for ever: Psalm 136:13 To him which divided the Red sea into parts: for his mercy endureth for ever: Psalm 136:16 To him which led his people through the wilderness: for his mercy endureth for ever. Psalm 136:24 And hath redeemed us from our enemies: for his mercy endureth for ever. Psalm 136:25 Who giveth food to all flesh: for his mercy endureth for ever. I like this verse a lot. Psalm 136:4 To him who alone doeth great wonders: for his mercy endureth for ever. Do you know what that means? What ever the DELIVERANCE is that you need, you can ACCESS it from the ONE WHO ALONE DOETH GREAT WONDERS. This is simply because His mercy endureth for ever.
God remembers you when you're down. He is working it out for you. "Who remembered us in our low estate: for his mercy endureth for ever:" (Psalm 136:23 KJV) Now isn't a time to give up friend. It's a time to keep trusting and increasing your faith. God WILL NOT allow us to suffer, even though it may seem so at times. He will take care of you. The very fact that you are on the land of the living AGAIN - TODAY means that Hope is Ahead and you have to REFUSE to give up - REFUSE to give in.
You have to PRESS ON! PRESS ON! God's Mercy Endureth For ever. Hope is Ahead!
And now abideth faith, hope, charity, these three; but the
greatest of these is charity. (1 Corinthian 13:13 KJV)
She had just taken down her hands from praising and exalting
God at the church service when our eyes met each other. We both stared and
stared for a while. I was stunned by her love for God and involvement as a
worshipper at so young of age.
She wasn’t waiting to be pumped up to praise like many other
youth. She was singing quite lustily. I tried to pay attention, but my eyes
kept looking to my right in constant amazement. Periodically, she would smile
with me as if she knew me. That meant the world to me.
She wasn’t dressed in revealing clothes like many of the
young ladies of today. She was well covered and attired quite elegantly. I had
scrutinized her from head to toe. I wondered for a while if God would punish me
for the many times I wasn’t paying attention to what was going on in the
service. Then I thought, God was probably setting me up for life.
The announcer called a name to come forward and sing a solo.
Wow. . . it was her. I had finally learned her name. I looked at every detail
as she walked gracefully to the stage. She moved like a princess. The
keyboardist gave her an introduction and then she opened her mouth to sing. I
was in awe. What talent! What a voice! What a blessing from God.
I put my face in my hand and said WOOOOOOOW! The song was
such a blessing that a few persons rose to their feet and just continued
praising God. The young lady didn’t sing to show herself. She truly let the
spirit minister through her.
You can imagine then, who my mind was on all throughout the
service. I really didn’t listen too much to the sermon, I wanted church to end
to say something to her.
As church ended, the quick hustle and bustle of the
attendees, caused me to lose sight of her. I immediately felt downhearted and
thought she had slipped away. A few minutes after, I felt a little tap on my
shoulder and I turned around. I opened my mouth to talk, but she spoke before
me. She grabbed my hand and said, “I see that our eyes have been meeting all
throughout the service. I like your spirit and I like how you worship and
praise God like me. Maybe, just maybe, something MAY become of us. Let’s start
it right though – Let pray about it. I want my relationship to be built on
Her words amazed me. God knew I like bold females. Actually
everything about her amazed me. I suddenly woke from my dream.
Friend, interestingly enough, many of us search for
something called Perfect Love. I don’t believe there is such when it comes to
mankind. What I do know though, is that Perfect Love can be found in a
relationship with Jesus Christ – that’s just why he came. John 3:16 says, For
God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever
believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.
You’ve been probably searching the wrong place for TRUE LOVE
all these years when TRUE
LOVE has been constantly knocking
on your heart’s door.
When Jesus’ love walked in the hearts of hundreds of
believers over the years, things always changed. He gave them a NEW HOPE. A NEW REASON to live on. He offers you
this HOPE TODAY.
was greatly distressed; for the people spake of stoning him, because the soul
of all the people was grieved, every man for his sons and for his daughters:
but David encouraged himself in the LORD his God. (1 Samuel 30:6 KJV)
“You are on a journey
in this life. There will be obstacles and potholes. Sometimes things will cause
you to ask, God what am I doing here? There is something I want you to know
though. If you fall down, you have a PERSONAL
RESPONSIBILITY to pick yourself up, brush yourself off and move on.”
Those were some of
the power filled words delivered by Reverend Jeremy Francis of the Estridge and Bethel Moravian
Churches in St. Kitts,
while preaching at the Unique Touch Christian Centre’s 9th
In The Lord!” was constantly chanted by the Reverend as he excited his
congregation and carried them down a path to remind them that God is still a
used a passage of scripture from I Samuel 30 to guide his sermon. He reminded
his listeners that even in Bible days, God’s people had to deal with trials and
“David too was in
distress – in problems. The people actually were planning to take him to the
end of the village and stone him. He was down. He was grieved.” Suggested Reverend
He then got into a
spirit of excitement as he shouted these words from the pulpit. “But David
Strengthened Himself in the Lord. But David Encouraged Himself in the Lord. So
too, when you are going through your trying times, the source from which you
should draw, is GOD.”
The congregation shouted
‘amens’ and ‘hallelujahs’ and gave a CRAZY
PRAISE. As I looked around, I could see a few persons on their feet and
clapping. I honestly had to contain myself too. I really felt like running up and
down the aisle. This word was just for me.
quickly stepped down from the sanctuary and called two persons from the
congregation to illustrate how David had helped an enemy and how that enemy in
return had led him and his clan to the spoil so they could recover all that
they would have lost and more.
“David made up in
his mind, having enquired of the Lord, that he was going to PURSUE, OVERTAKE
and WITHOUT FAIL, RECOVER
IT ALL!” Reverend Francis said.
“Stay Put! Encourage Yourself! God will take your enemies and make them your
footstool. God will use your enemies to cause you to prosper.” The Reverend
suggested. I opened my eyes a bit wider having looked up from writing and the full figured Reverend was overly excited and jumping on the stage now as he said, "Even before you do it, success is yours. Success is sure. God will fight ALL your battles." This was certainly a word from the Lord.
“Things might be
rough. No money might be dey. But that is a great time to encourage yourself in
the Lord. Victory is Assured!”
I was the host for
the event and as I saw he was closing his sermon, I wondered what I should
really say after such a power packed HOPE
WORD. When I took the microphone, all I was left to do was to ask the
congregation to rise to their feet and begin to declare some positive things
over their lives and send up the praise.
Friend, I honestly
wish you were there to hear this POWERFUL
HOPE word for yourself delivered
by a Moravian Preacher – Reverend Jeremy Francis. It was timely and to the
No matter what you
are going through, let us NEVER
GIVE UP, but do as David did in I
Samuel 30:6 – Encourage ourselves in the Lord. Stay Firm. Stay Strong. Victory
is Assured. Even though your enemies rise up against you today and other days,
like David, do good to them. God will make those very same enemies and haters,
your FOOTSTOOL to better days and better things. DO GOOD!
Dare 2 Be Different
International makes no reserves in recommending Reverend Jeremy Francis to our
international network of readers and ministries for service to God around the