The Sweet Stuff Ministry

Monday, December 20, 2010

AGAPE love

     Luke 10:27   He answered:  "Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength and with all your mind; and, 'Love your neighbor as yourself".

     AGAPE is the Greek word for love.  Agape is a non-romantic, brotherly, Christian love, representative of how Christ love humankind.  It means to love without expecting anything in return.  Charity and service are types of agape love.  To give freely from the heart whether the giving is time, money, compassion, material possessions, or kindness.   Agape is the type of love that Christ offered during his time on earth.  He gave of himself as representation of God by teaching, healing, and showing love and compassion.  He did all this freely, never expecting anything in return and by the way, most of the time what he did get in return was mockery, persecution and mistreatment. 
     As we enter the Christmas season, many people feel a desire to give to those in need.  I challenge each of you to search your hearts for agape love, offer it to someone and serve God by doing so.  May agape love become a permanent attitude of the heart and not just a mindset at the Christmas season.   


Monday, December 13, 2010

JOB

     As I reflect upon the message presented to us, last evening, by Bro. Vincent Agbodo, a West African missionary, I cannot help but desire to share it with you.  It was powerful and meaningful. The message came from Job 1:1-22.  In this passage, Job is tempted by Satan as Satan tries to cause Job to curse God.  Job lost his children and Satan came to laugh about this as he thought this would be enough to cause Job to turn against God.  However, in this situation, Job fell to the ground and worshiped the Lord.  He said, "Blessed be the name of the Lord".
     In how many of our situations, trials and troubles do we fall down and worship?  Generally, we want to blame God or be angry, especially when we feel that we know what is best.  If we truly fear God and trust him, we should worship and rejoice in every situation.
     The title of Bro. Agbodo's message  was What Would God Say About Me?   In Job 1:8, God asked Satan, "Has thou considered my servant Job, that there is none like him in the earth, a perfect and upright man, one that feareth God, and escheweth evil?  Could God say this about me?  Job feared (respected) God and served Him no matter what!  Talk about LONGSUFFERING.   I want to be like this.  Believe me when I say, as I write this I am "preaching" to myself.

Friday, December 10, 2010

Wisdom

Psalm 111:10  Fear of the Lord is the foundation of true wisdom.  All who obey his commandments will grow in wisdom.

What does wisdom look like?  What does wisdom feel like?  What does wisdom act like?  The Bible tells us in Psalms 111:10 that the fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom.  Fear in this sense does not mean to be afraid, but it means to respect.  A respect and deep appreciation for the Lord is the beginning of wisdom. This is where to start in becoming wise. 
    
Webster's Dictionary defines wisdom as an understanding of what is TRUE.   Understanding truth is understanding the Bible (God's word).  We understand God's word first by having a strong desire to obtain wisdom.  Secondly, we should pray, read scripture, and seek the counsel of God and godly people. 
    
Worldly wisdom can be dangerous.  Being of great intelligence or possessing worldly knowledge does NOT equal wisdom.  Man's wisdom often responds to the flesh and emotions that one is feeling.  Godly wisdom responds to the Holy Spirit. 

So what does wisdom look like?  
Wisdom is first a deep love and respect for God.  
Wisdom is righteous living by obeying God's commandments. 
Wisdom is calm. 
Wisdom is finding the truth in situations before reacting and knowing when not to react at all.  Wisdom embraces integrity. 
Wisdom seeks God in all situations, no matter how small or large. 

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

PATIENCE

Galatians 5:22-23--But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith, meekness, temperence: against such there is no law.

Longsuffering is patience. Patience is defined in Webster's dictionary as the capability of bearing affliction with calmness; able to tolerate delay; understanding. We must have patience in all aspects of our world around us. Patience is required when we deal with people, situations, God and ourselves.
Is patience always easy? NO! Even some of the most patient people in small everyday situations are tested when trials seem to have no clear end or resolution. One might be patient enough with children, traffic or small frustations, but when that longsuffering is put to a test, how well does it hold? How do we endure the trials of our patience such as praying for a family member that is unsaved, enduring a chronic illness, loss of a loved one, or dealing with a job lay off and financial uncertainties?

Christian character comes from the Holy Spirit. We must seek character and desire to possess the fruits of the spirit as mentioned in Galatians 5:22-23. Longsuffering should draw us nearer to God, more dependent upon him and his timing, trusting that he has the plan best suited for us. Events and situations that we describe as "trying our patience" are really tests of our Christian character. So, the next time your patience is put to the test, seek what God is showing you, strengthen your Christian character and thank him for the experience.

Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Super Heroes

Ephesians 6:10-11  Finally, be strong in the Lord and in his mighty power.  Put on the full armor of God so that you can take your stand against the devil's schemes.

Batman, Robin, Superman, Spiderman, Wonder Woman. What do all these have in common? They are super heroes and we hold the memories of their good deeds from decades ago. These super heroes were ordinary people with ordinary lives yet they had the ability to become super heroes and to call upon super strengths and insights. They each had a costume (uniform) that empowered them and they each possessed some unique power or gesture once they engaged in superhero mode. When there was trouble or danger for themselves or others, they donned the "suit" and used the super powers to save or rescue people. Each character craved justice and wanted to see evil defeated. Each hero had his/her own enemies and usually one arch nemesis.

We should all have the same cravings and desires to see God's ways and word carried out. When we know that people are in trouble, danger or burdened, do we delight in this, walk away in oblivion or do we put on our armor and swoop in to make a difference? Are we willing to go the extra mile to help or rescue people from evil and oppression? Are we willing to take on our enemies and arch nemeses?

I challenge each of you to put the "S" on your chest and become a Superhero for God. Crave justice, peace and to see evil defeated. Look for opportunities to improve mankind, to uplift those in trouble and make a difference in our lost and dying world!

Monday, November 22, 2010

Troubles

Psalms 9:9 "The LORD is a refuge for the oppressed, a stronghold in times of trouble."

When troubles come, and they will, it is easy for us to wonder if God has forsaken us. We may ask God, "Are you there? Have you forgotten me? What am I doing wrong?" The Bible tells us that as Christians we will be persecuted. (1 Peter 2:19-23; John 15: 18-20; 2 Cor. 11:23-26; 2 Timothy 3: 10-12) Our persecutions come from Satan and those that enable Satan to use them. Persecution may be in the form of ridicule, gossip, torment, physical injury, or character assassination just to name a few. It is Satan's goal to steal from us, torment and destroy us.

As Christians, we should rejoice and embrace these persecutions (Matthew 5:10-12; Acts 5:40-42). This does not mean that they do not cause pain or that we will feel like celebrating, in fact some persecutions are painful and grievous. But we should be honored to endure for the Lord and remember the sufferings that Christ endured for us.

When people persecute us, we are tempted to become angry and sometimes to retaliate. In our times of suffering, we must not sin but hold steadfast in our faith. God promises us that he will provide a way out of the suffering and will hold us when we hurt. 1 Corinthians 10:13 tells us that God will not give us more than we can bear.

Each of us has our own troubles and heartaches. They come in different flavors, different degrees of seriousness and have different outcomes. But one thing remains the same: God offers us comfort and refuge.   In those times of torment and persecution, be still, be quiet and watch God work for you.

Saturday, July 24, 2010

Welcome

Just as many things in this life tug at our heartstrings, God also tugs at our heartstrings. He has expectations of us and we have responsibilities to meet these expectations. Won't you join in and delve into your heartstrings to be what he wants you to be?

Welcome to HEARTSTRINGS4HIM, the answer to a new ministry calling. Over the past couple of years, as I studied spiritual gifts, I have prayed that God would reveal to me what my gifts are. I was not gifted with song or musical talent, although I have great interests in both. As my gifts were revealed to me, I realized they were right under my nose the whole time. I had just never implemented them to serve the Lord. I have always loved people and interacting with them. I have always loved talking and speaking and competed in talk meets and public speaking throughout school. I have a degree and experience in teaching, hence, my gift-to speak and teach what God would have me to do.

I covet your prayers as I embark on this new journey. It is my desire to deliver God's word to people that have a need and desire to hear and learn.

I invite you to visit the blog often, post comments, or send your prayer requests. May God bless you and continue to seek your heartstrings.