“IT IS NOT MY FAULT!” Sunday Sermonette

“When Pilate saw that he was getting nowhere, but that instead an uproar was starting, he took water and washed his hands in front of the crowd. ‘I am innocent of this man’s blood,’ he said. ‘It is your responsibility!'”  Matthew 27:24 NIV   Read:  Matthew 27:11-26   Refusing to take responsibility is becoming the norm in our society by many.   It seems if all is going well, many want to take credit for the success.   But, if something goes wrong, the finger pointing begins.   Remember, when you point one finger at another you have three fingers pointing back at you.   We need to take responsibility for our own failures and for the failures of others whom we are responsible.   For everything that goes wrong, there is a person or persons who are responsible.   In all situations, we need to do to others as we would want others to do for us.   We need to be fair and honest with all; taking great care to be responsible for our actions and accepting responsibility for the actions of others under our leadership.   In our reading, we see Pilate actually washing his hands with water as he claimed he was not responsible for the coming beatings and crucifixion of JESUS.   He was responsible since he did nothing to stop the murder.   In fact, every person there who did nothing was responsible for the death of JESUS.   Being held responsible for your actions is something we can easily understand.   We need to realize we are equally responsible for our lack of actions.   What have you...

“DO YOU WORRY? WHY?” Wednesday Minute

“Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God.”  Philippians 4:6 NIV Read:   Matthew 6:25-34 My mother was a very sweet lady.  But, she worried.   She worried about everything.  I honestly believe, if she couldn’t think of something to worry about, she would worry about not worrying.   Growing up in her shadow, I learned to worry as she did.   Thankfully, after many years, I learned not to worry and to give my concerns over to my LORD.   Do you worry?   What do you worry about?  Have you considered why you worry?  Have you considered that perhaps you worry because you are not trusting GOD?   If you trust GOD with your problems, then what do you have to worry about?   Our reading today in Matthew, JESUS, HIMSELF, explains to us what we should not worry about.  Verse 27 tells us: “Can any one of you by worrying add a single hour to your life?”  Of course, we cannot add days, hours or even minutes to our lives by any worrying.  But, we can have productive days, hours and minutes by not worrying.   The first thing you can do to stop worrying is to start praying.  All those thoughts, doubts and insecurities can be laid at JESUS’ feet.    Satan will tell you differently.    He will pile guilt on top of your thoughts, doubts and insecurities.   JESUS will take away all your false guilt.   Pay particular attention and heed JESUS’ words in verse 34:  “Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself....

“IF THE DEVIL DANCED . . .” Sunday Sermonette

“God is not unjust; he will not forget your work and the love you have shown him as you have helped his people and continue to help them.”  Hebrews 6:10  NIV   Read:   Hebrews 6:1-10   If you have been a reader of these devotionals very long, you might have come to realize I love old country sayings.   I remember hearing when I was a kid: “If the devil danced in empty pockets, he would have a ball in mine.”   Decades ago, a song was recorded with this as its tag line.   It described having nothing.   My young preteen years were hard having nothing.   I believe no one knows how someone who is poor really feels unless they had a time in their life when they were poor also.    There were times ‘the devil danced in my empty pockets.’  Has the devil ever danced in your empty pockets?   Sure, there are plenty who refuse to work and prefer living off the funds the government allows.  There are incentives to discourage working so some can qualify for financial assistance.   But, don’t judge all who are in need of help.   There are people…lots of people who need a little helping hand.   We can read about those who begged at the city gates in scripture.   Just as those who were in need, there are those in need today.   It is not always about throwing money at a problem.   Money, alone, seldom solves any problem.  But, funds along with encouragement, teaching, counseling or training can bring dramatic results.   Did anyone ever help you?   Isn’t it time...

“NOT EVEN A THANK YOU!” Wednesday Minute

“Sing to the Lord with grateful praise;  make music to our God on the harp.”  Psalm 147:7 NIV   Read:  Psalm 147   You did all you were supposed to do.  In fact, you went well beyond what anyone would ever expect.  You gave more and more and more.   Others were happy to take all you gave; your time, talents and even your money, but they never showed any appreciation.   You were generous and never expected anything in return.  But, did they even say “Thank you!”?   Most of us have been in that situation.   We also might have been the one who took and took and took and never humbled ourselves to utter a simple “Thank you!”.   We cannot be critical of others for not thanking us for our efforts while we don’t apply the same standard to ourselves.   What about all the times GOD has given to you more than you deserved?  Have you ever made a list of all you have that came from GOD?   You can sum up your entire list in one word.   Everything.    Everything you have, had or will ever have comes from GOD.  Everything.   Your family, your job, the food on your table, your car, even the clothes on your back all came from GOD.   Have you taken and taken and taken from GOD and never given back to HIM a humble “THANK YOU, LORD!”?    We go to GOD in prayer, never hesitating to ask HIM for more and more.   We ask HIM for things we want and don’t necessarily need.   We ask HIM to help us in times of...

“ENOUGH IS ENOUGH!” Sunday Sermonette

“Deliver me, my God, from the hand of the wicked, from the grasp of those who are evil and cruel.”  Psalm 71:3 NIV   Read:   Psalm 71   Are there times you would like to scream:  “Enough is enough!”?   There are times in all of our lives when things seem to be going against us.   Sometimes the pressures are more than we can seem to bear.   But, it is exactly that…’seem’ is the operative word.  We can bear up to more than we can imagine when we depend upon our LORD.  Our strength against the evils of this world is insufficient on its own.   Satan uses situations and people to wear us down, to question our faith or to give in to those who do not have our best interest at heart.   But, as a believer, you have the HOLY SPIRIT alive and well in you.  GOD’S SPIRIT is not just a thought.  GOD sent HIS SPIRIT to guide you, to support you and to protect you.   As we read the writings of David and others, we hear the pain in their words.   We also read of their faith in all situations.  When you are facing that impossible person to deal with or a situation that seemingly has no answer; scream out “Enough is enough!”.   Tell GOD that ‘enough is enough’ and you are ready for HIS help.   Admit you cannot handle the pressure on your own and you need GOD’S strength to help you.   Today’s prayer:   “MY SAVING GOD, Thank YOU for always being there for me in my times of distress...