No one likes to be used. Especially, if they’re aware of it. Two of the very first reactions a person feels when their love or kindness is being misused, is hurt and anger. Those two feelings can cause that person to shut down and shut people out or seek revenge. Matthew 5:39, “But I tell you, do not resist an evil person. If anyone slaps you on the right cheek, turn to them the other cheek also.”

Listen, Jesus isn’t telling you to go around letting people beat you up, or even use you! This scripture is more about not taking revenge on a person who has used you, or is using you. Hurt and anger can cloud your judgement and cause you to react outside of the will of God. God wants us to be more like Him! Think about how imperfect we are, but we still expect God to bless us regardless, and He does!

Not because of who we are, but because of who He is! He wants us to be the same way! Be good to others, not because they deserve it, but because God allowed you to be a blessing in that person’s life. Another scripture that’s important to remember here is, Luke 6:35 (CSB), “But love your enemies, do what is good, and lend, expecting nothing in return. Then your reward will be great, and you will be children of the Most High.

For he is gracious to the ungrateful and evil.” If you are only doing good to receive goodness from others, then you have the wrong motives, and your goodness isn’t coming from a genuine place, it’s coming from a selfish place. God wants us to be unbothered by other people’s actions towards us, because that’s what true character is! If what people do to you, sways you, then you will be in and out of character your whole life. God wants us to be secure in Him, so that we are stable at all times.

Be kind, give to the undeserving and love without limits. Don’t be foolish, and believe that because you’re good to everyone, everyone will be good to you in return. That’s naive. Be good to others, and use godly discernment so that you know who you’re dealing with. Don’t go around with a sign on your back that says, “Use me!”

This is not what Jesus is talking about. He wants us to follow His example and be good to others regardless of their motives towards us, and He wants us to leave vengeance to Him! Deuteronomy 32:35 (b), “It is mine to avenge; I will repay.” Being good to others without placing an expectation on them, is both wise and mature. It’s not about us and our feelings, it’s about Jesus, and benevolently sharing the gift that God has put inside of each and every one of us! ❤️

Oftentimes we think that letting go is more painful than holding on, but that’s not always the case. The thing about letting go and holding on, is to know when to let go and when to hold on. So, how does one know whether to leave or stay? Well, as far as letting go, there’s two signs. The first sign that it’s time to let go is when you have no peace with the situation you’re in, whether it’s a job, living arrangement or relationship etc…

If you’ve done all you can on your end to keep the situation peaceful, but you still can’t find peace… it’s time to go! If you don’t, that lack of peace turns into stress, and stress is linked to six leading causes of death! Listen, life happens! There will always be trials that you will face, so don’t run from your problems, however; if the job, relationship or situation you’re in is causing you to be depressed, frustrated, abused and misused… being in that environment is doing more harm than good and it’s time to let go!

The second sign that it’s time to let go is if there’s no common ground. If you can’t come together, it’s best not to be together. Any relationship requires teamwork. Jesus said in Mark 3:25, “If a house is divided against itself, that house cannot stand.”This analogy can be used in any situation, not just spiritual.

There are many other signs that it’s time to let go, but for the sake of time those are the main two. 1 Corinthians 7:15 (b), “God has called us to live in peace.” So, moving on, How do you know when to hold on? You know when to hold on when both parties involved are making a genuine effort to keep things together because it’s for the best. There are no hidden agendas as to why either of you should stay, and you’re doing it by choice and not by force.

If you’re holding on in order to benefit someone else, you won’t have peace in the matter and the person you’re trying to protect will end up getting hurt, because sooner or later the truth will come out. The second sign that you should hold on is if there’s healthy communication between you and the person or parties involved in your situation. Strong healthy communication is a necessity in any relationship or situation because it keeps everyone in the loop. It’s easier to gain an understanding and work through any issue if there’s good communication. You both know what each other want and it’s easier to find common ground.

So, there it is folks! If you have no peace, say peace! If the relationship or situation you’re in is worth working through, then hold on to it! The main takeaway here is don’t allow a relationship or situation to take anything priceless away from you! Not your peace, happiness, smile, faith, self worth or anything else you bring to the table… and if you have something that’s worth fighting for, fight with all your might!

Be blessed!

What you do isn’t as important as to why you do it! A person’s motives is everything, because it comes from the heart! Proverbs 16:2 (CEV) says, “We may think we know what is right, but the LORD is the judge of our motives.” Another scripture says, “A bad motive can’t achieve a good end; double-talk brings you double trouble (Proverbs 17:20 MSG).” Whew child!

That’s deep! Both scriptures! Have you ever done something that wasn’t necessarily good, in order to make yourself look good? No? Okay how about this.

Have you ever prayed for God to bless you with a spouse, just so you could make your ex jealous? By the way, if you have, you don’t need a man or woman, you need a healing! A person may not be so easy to confess to either of the questions that I’ve asked but it’s important to be conscious of why we ask God for certain things. Sometimes we’re not ready for what we pray for. Sometimes the things we want are just things we think we need to pacify our emotions.

Don’t pacify your emotions, confront them! What is the truth behind them? Once you find that out, ask God to help you deal with them for good, so that you can heal. A person with the wrong motives is a person who operates from their insecurities. Listen, we’re all insecure about something, but that doesn’t mean your insecurities should dictate your life!

Have faith! A person whose motives are good, has faith! They believe in something greater than the temporary gratification of pleasing themselves. They experience the same issues as the rest of the world, but their choice makes all the difference. They choose not to allow negative things that’s happened to them, to get inside of them.

James 4:3 says, “When you ask, you do not receive, because you ask with wrong motives, that you may spend what you get on your pleasures.” What are you asking God for today? Are your motives genuine, or is there a gray area? That gray area is a sign that your heart may not be in the right place. You may not be asking for money, it may be something else you want, in order to fulfill a desire that has nothing to do with God.

I’ve made this mistake in the past and have learned to live by this scripture, Proverbs 16:3 (NLT), “Commit your actions to the LORD, and your plans will succeed.” This means, get on one accord with God, by following the lead of the Holy Spirit and you will succeed! You’re already a winner in Christ, but in order to experience that vision or live out that dream, you must follow His lead! Good or bad motives are both derived from a special place in the heart that desires a specific result. What’s in that special corner of your heart?

Is it something that’s taking up space and keeping you from experiencing God’s best? Is it something you need to confront, that’s been causing you to make bad decisions about the good things? God wants to give you the desires of your heart, but not if those desires are going to hurt you more than help you. Be honest with what you are truly ready for in life, and be even more honest about why you’re ready. God wants you to live purposefully, healthy and loved.

You can desire great things, but it’s the way that you go about attaining those things that tells the truth about what you’re really after.

Philippians 4:8

Finally, brethren, whatsoever things are true, whatsoever things are honest, whatsoever things are just, whatsoever things are pure, whatsoever things are lovely, whatsoever things are of good report; if there be any virtue, and if there be any praise, think on these things.

So, a plank, for those of you that don’t know, is timber that’s long, flat and rectangular. It is used in construction of ships, houses, bridges and other structures. So, in Matthew 7:3-5, when Jesus was giving a lesson on discernment, He basically told us that we need to take care of our personal obstruction of view before trying to help someone else see clearly.  How can we use godly discernment if our own feelings and self righteousness is in the way? When someone chooses to point out wrongs in others without dealing with their personal faults; I call that the invisible plank.

It’s really a spirit of hinderance. Think about it. A plank is used in construction to build something. When someone judges others for sinning differently than them, just what are they building? I’ll tell you what. A wall of darkness, that’s not only keeping that person from seeing the light, but also keeps them from being a light. Self accountability is the light that chases away the dark cloud of Hinderance.

I mean we have to be real with ourselves when pointing the finger, because when we point one finger, three points back at us. It’s like when you’re on an airplane, and the flight attendant is giving you information on how to apply the mask. The attendant always tells you to put on yours before trying to help someone else. Why? Because you could possibly pass out while trying to help someone else!

You must take care of yourself before properly caring for someone else. Are you carrying around an invisible plank in your eye? You may have been if you’re doing more blaming than acknowledging. You may be if you accept one sin and frown on others. 😕 Let’s do better by ourselves and our fellow man or woman.

The truth is, we may genuinely want what’s best for others, and are trying to lead them the right way, but we can’t lead effectively if we ourselves are in darkness. People look more at your actions than they hear your words. If you don’t practice what you preach, you’ll be seen as hypocritical, and no one will take you seriously. Remember, self righteousness and a lack of personal accountability hinders one from becoming! Becoming what?

Becoming the very best you that God created you to be, and becoming a living testimony to others of the grace of God! People need to hear your story. They need to see that you too have weaknesses and that none of us will reach perfection until we reach Heaven. Still, as Paul said, “I press.”

Keep pressing towards the mark! You’re going to make mistakes and guess what? IT’S OKAY! Jesus died and rose again one time for your lifetime of mistakes! 🙌🏾 Through Christ we are perfected, but we’re not perfect. The only way to keep it real with others, is to first keep it real with yourself! 😉

Be blessed.

Matthew 7:3-5 (NIV)

Why do you look at the speck of sawdust in your brother’s eye and pay no attention to the plank in your own eye? How can you say to your brother, ‘Let me take the speck out of your eye,’ when all the time there is a plank in your own eye? You hypocrite, first take the plank out of your own eye, and then you will see clearly to remove the speck from your brother’s eye.

Ephesians 6:10-18 tells us how to stand firm in the Lord by being equipped with the full armor of God. The very first thing this scripture tells us to do is to be strong in the Lord and in the power of His might. It’s imperative that we draw strength from God and rely on His power that’s at work in us, rather than leaning on our own understanding, which many times is derived from the way we feel and has no real basis of truth, which leads me to the very first part of our armor; the belt of truth. What is a belt used for? To hold things up or keep them in place.

Basically our belt is our security. The TRUTH, is our security. Jesus said in John 14:6, “I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.” Did you catch that?

JESUS aka the LIVING WORD OF GOD, is the TRUTH! God’s Word is true. Stand on it, no matter where you are in life, and no matter what you go through! Don’t allow what you choose to compromise on, cause you to also compromise the truth. If you compromise the truth, you’re living a lie.

Sure, we all want healthy loving relationships, where we’re compassionate and understanding; but if we have to compromise our truth (who we are in Christ), in order to be accepted or feel loved by others, then we’re going about things the wrong way. You will never have to compromise who you are in Christ to attain real love. God is the perfect definition of love. Don’t feel guilty for being obedient to God. Stand your ground.

You’re not being unreasonable when you refuse to compromise on the Word of God. You’re not being arrogant when you boldly declare the truth! You’re not being ignorant when you refuse to accept anything less than God’s best for your life. Before Jesus healed the two blind men, He asked them if they believed He could heal them. When they opened up their mouth and declared their belief, Matthew 9:29 says that Jesus said, “According to your faith let it be done to you.”

You know what this means?

It means that your faith sets the course of your life. If you believe little, then you will never know your full potential, but if you believe big, God will do exceedingly abundantly above all you could ask or think! Don’t feel like you ever have to compromise the TRUTH! Stand on the Word. People are either going to love or hate you for it, but don’t be moved by how people feel about you.

Be compassionate, be understanding, and love without limits… COMPROMISE!… but never compromise the TRUTH! Your peace of mind and spiritual man depends on it!

Don’t let life pass you by because you’re too afraid to live. It doesn’t matter what the cards of life has dealt you, play it to the best of your ability, knowing you have help, hope and a future. One of my favorite scriptures of all time is Jeremiah 29:11, “For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the LORD, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.” If you’ve loved and lost… love again! If you had a dream that didn’t work out the first time… dream again, and dream big!

God never promised us that life would be easy, but He did say that He would go before us, be with us, and never leave us (Deuteronomy 31:8)! That means we can get through anything with God! Find the will to love again and do it deeply! Find the inspiration to dream again, and never give up; give it all you’ve got! Your life didn’t end when you took a loss.

You still have time to turn things around and make it a win! You’re already a winner in Christ, so live like it! Say to your storm, “You won’t defeat me. You’re only making me stronger!”

When life has hit you with its best shot and you feel both down and out and down on luck, look up, get up and LIVE! You’re not too old. It’s not too late. You’re not at a disadvantage. Start where you are, use what you have, do what you can and trust God with what you can’t.

Just because things fell apart in the past, doesn’t mean it won’t come together in the future. Remember 🗣🗣🗣All things are working for your good! Don’t let life happen to you… LET LIFE HAPPEN AND HAVE THE AUDACITY TO LIVE!

Comparison cripples purpose. I’m going to say it again for the people in the back… 🗣🗣🗣COMPARISON CRIPPLES PURPOSE! If a person is too busy comparing someone’s else’s strengths to their personal weaknesses, how is the scale balanced? If a person is too busy dissecting someone else’s life, how can they get their own life together or walk in their God given purpose?

Oftentimes when we compare our life to others, we do it on an unbalanced scale. For instance: Jill is a natural born singer. She practically came out of the womb singing and has been in talent competitions since she was two years old, later it gained her a decent following base on social media, and now that she’s 18, she has a record deal and it appears as though she’s living the life. Kara is also a natural born singer who has been in talent competitions since the age two. She was also a baby model, and as she grew she became a promotional model for commercials, and by six, she had a regular role in a television series.

Kara is now 18, and is known all over the world for her singing and acting roles. If Jill compared her life to Kara’s, instead of counting her blessings, she’d see that they both have the same talent, but she’d wonder why things worked out better for Kara, when she’s been working just as hard. She’d wonder why it took her eighteen years to get a record deal, and Kara got her first gig at the age two. Jill wouldn’t be comparing their lives on a balanced scale, because although they both can sing, Kara’s also an actor, and because of the early exposure to the entertainment industry that she’d had as a baby, it has gained her much success. Kara also worked hard for her success, and it cost her years of childhood that she couldn’t enjoy.

Jill on the other hand, had a fulfilling childhood, and also worked hard to compete in talent shows, but she didn’t have the same exposure as Kara. It took her longer to get discovered. From a pessimist point of view, they’d only see that Kara has it made, and that they’ve worked hard all these years and don’t have anything compared to what Kara has. They’d look at Kara’s house, salary, and other material things and get depressed. An optimist on the other hand would first count their blessings, instead of compare.

They’d understand that life is meant to be a journey, and not a competition. They’d be thankful that their hard work is paying off, even if it took longer than it takes others. They’d understand Ecclesiastes 9:11 which says, “I have seen something else under the sun: The race is not to the swift or the battle to the strong, nor does food come to the wise or wealth to the brilliant or favor to the learned; but time and chance happen to them all.” In other words, this scripture is saying just because you’re the best at something, it doesn’t mean you’ll be in a high position or attain success quickly. Life happens! 🤷🏾‍♀️

The story above is just an analogy, because sometimes it’s not what a person knows, it’s who they know, but the same principle applies. You really don’t know the sacrifice. Oftentimes we see a person’s glory, without knowing their story. I believe that if we had a peep into some of the people’s lives that we compare our lives to, we’d thank God more for what we have and complain less about what we don’t. You don’t have what it takes to live their life, because it’s THEIR LIFE (journey) to live, not yours, and vice versa.

We all have a price to pay for the life we want, whether we have to give up something to make room for something else, or even give up someone, who’s been holding us back from becoming who we’re meant to be. Becoming oneself takes sacrifice! Comparing your journey to others will only upset and depress you! You don’t know what a person had to sacrifice to become who they are, so count your blessings, focus on your strengths, and know your true value. I can guarantee you that you’ll be much happier with who you are, and where you are in life if you do these things.

Lastly, don’t let things be your goal. The real goal is Heaven! Be blessed. ❤️

Hey y’all! I’m currently on vacay, but as always it’s TEAM JESUS, and today I wanted to share a little something, something with you all that’s been on my heart, and I believe it will bless you. If any of you have teenagers, then you know that teenage years are the most challenging years of parenting! I mean seriously, give me a newborn and zero nights of sleep any day, over a teenager and their attitudes and raging hormones! 0D998732-D24B-4877-A22A-DED978EF0BE2

 I’m just kidding, all jokes aside, I love my teenagers, I have four, well one just turned twenty, so three, but it’s basically the same difference.

Anyways, God is teaching me to be more compassionate. Sometimes when one of my teenagers push my buttons and I want to ring their neck, God has taught me to change the way I look at the situation. Instead of making things worse during certain situations, thank God that things aren’t as bad as they could be. I believe it’s important to walk hand and hand even though you don’t always see eye to eye. Our children need us.

There has been many instances where my child or children have made mistakes, but I don’t dwell on their wrongdoings because guess what? I make mistakes daily and God’s grace and mercy still follows me all the days of my life! I go out of my way to be good to my children and I show them compassion daily, even if they wreck my nerves, because my love for them isn’t contingent upon their behavior. It’s the same way with God! The Word of God says in John 3:16, “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.”

God loved us when we were His enemies and sent Jesus to die for us WHEN WE WERE HIS ENEMIES! John 15:13 says, “Greater love hath no man than this, that a man lay down his life for his friends.” I couldn’t agree more! Anyway, the Holy Spirit moved me to share this with you, and you may not have a teenager, you may be in a relationship, or dealing with an uncompromising boss, or relative. When someone presses your button, simply respond with love. DE2C042E-EABF-4D23-82BC-4C0E2FA05651

Ask the Holy Spirit to teach you what to say, because in the heat of the moment if you aren’t lead by the Holy Spirit, you will speak out of anger and say something you’ll later regret. God wants us to respond with love. Learn to disagree without being disagreeable. Proverbs 4:7 says, “Wisdom isthe principal thing; thereforeget wisdom: and with all thy getting get understanding.” Ask God to help you properly assess the situation so that you’ll know how to approach it.

Remember, 1 Peter 4:8 (NIV), “Most important of all, continue to show deep love for each other, for love covers a multitude of sins.” Another very important scripture to help you keep things in perspective is this, Proverbs 17:9, “Love prospers when a fault is forgiven, but dwelling on it separates close friends.” God wants our relationships to thrive! C22056ED-7230-45F7-9E5B-D56738396F1E

Oh, the irony of anger. Have you ever heard the phrase, “It’s a thin line between love and hate?” How about this phrase, “He who angers you controls you?” When someone ticks you off, you’re angry because you feel like they owe you something, preferably an apology. Basically, you just want the person to right their wrongs.

What if the person never apologizes? Should you just forgive and forget? The short answer is yes. Peter asked Jesus how many times should he forgive someone who wronged him? He then asked Jesus should he forgive seven times? 

Jesus said seventy times seven (see Matthew 18:21-22). In other words, Jesus was telling Peter to always forgive. Forgiving someone for doing you wrong sets you free. The longer you’re angry, the tighter the clench becomes. The clench that keeps offense in your grip.

You want to know what else is in that clench, the person who offended you! You may think you’re done with this person, but truth is, as long as you’re holding on to what they did, you’re not done with them. In order to heal from the hurt of your past, you have to let go! Another truth is, you won’t let go of the offense because you refuse to let go of the person… you still love them.

What if I told you that it’s possible to love someone for life, without them actually being in your life? It’s the truth. Sometimes it’s best to love from a distance. Especially in situations where being with or around this person robs you of your peace. There are some instances where distance isn’t an option, and so you really have to forgive quickly and learn to protect your peace.

One way to protect your peace is to humble yourself. You’re not doing it to please people, you’re doing it for God, and realizing this makes biting your tongue a lot less painful. James 4:10, “Humble yourselves before the Lord, and he will lift you up.” Letting go and letting God feels better than the temporary satisfaction of revenge. Deuteronomy 32:35, “It is mine to avenge; I will repay.”

Let God deal with people and most importantly, allow Him to deal with you! Loosen that clench you’ve been holding on to, and allow Him to work on and through you! The process may hurt sometimes, and it isn’t always going to be pretty, but if you trust God with the ugly, He can create something beautiful! There is purpose in your pain! If you enjoyed this message, click the link below to receive your copy of my book, “Betrayed with a kiss.”

Betrayed with a kiss