Check Yourself

Mark Twain said “the rumors of my death have been greatly exaggerated”.  This is what I thought when I saw that my last post on this site was two years ago!    I have been on a self-imposed sabbatical. but, just like the weather, I feel like I am thawing out and will ‘run on to see what the end is going to be’.  I want the Lord to say “Well done, Jan, enter into the House (joy) of the Lord.

In this month of March, it is a good time to check your progress from last year and focus on what you plan to do this year. This assessment includes both natural and spiritual. As we enter the first quarter of this year, we should also get a jump on ‘spring (spiritual) cleaning’. Consider the following:

  1. Get rid of the baggage.You cannot go forward with the baggage of tradition, and a ‘this is the way we used to do it’ attitude. You cannot live life well by holding onto wounds that have not healed. Release the people in your life who never pour into your life but drain you on a frequent basis. They take your resources but not your adviceabout how to fish instead of always asking for a fish.  Stay tuned for our discussion on ‘boundaries’.
  2. Stop the insanity. Insanity is doing the same thing expecting different results. Church people, if you program has the SAME order of service every Sunday, with the little print “subject to change according to the Holy Spirit” and no souls are being added to the Kingdom like the first century church, then you need to do something different.  Stay tuned for our ‘View from the Pew’ discussion.
  3. Enlarge your territory.Look for God outside your ‘box.’ Ask God to enlarge your mental, spiritual, and natural territories. God cannot fit within the four walls of your church, denomination or ministry.  Ask God to open your spiritual eyes so that you can see Him, Monday through Friday. The more I read the more I realize how much I don’t know.  Ask God to clean your ears of ‘wax’ that interferes with you hearing Hisvoice.  Stay tuned for our ‘pastoral counseling’ discussion.
  4. Take it one day at a time. Time is the only commodity that cannot be redeemed. In the spiritual, there is kairostime–it includes the idea of an opportunity or a suitable time for an action to take place. Seize the day for your purpose work to begin. Practice it one day at a time.  If you fall, get back up, God has your back according to Lamentations 3:23.

I’m going to borrow a saying you may remember. “Check yourself so you don’t wreck yourself”.  Move forward towards His will. Let the cleaning begin!  No more sabbaticals.

Rev. Jan Esq.

 

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Two Days

 

In two days there will be the most polarizing election in the history of this country. There will be some people who will be extremely happy and those that will be extremely mad. I wrote this text prior to making it to my local assembly.  My Pastor preached (more eloquently of course) from the same scriptures, and confirmed what I had written.  Thanks be to God for confirmation.

Regardless of who wins, GOD IS STILL IN CONTROL!  Neither party nor candidate can fix the ills of this world–only God.  Make sure you vote for the right judges, representatives, and local issues that will affect you where you live.  Make sure your check-marks are correct before you leave the voting booth.  Beware of democrats who are really republicans.  In other words, make sure you know the person’s history and not vote blindly. Politicians are not miracle workers, and they can do serious damage.

I have even asked the question, ‘does God even care about the politics of this land?  That’s another discussion.  But since the election is two days away, let’s talk about it.

This is the God I am referring to because several religious figures and denominations claim to know God but their actions prove otherwise.

  • My prayer is that the colorblind God of the Universe shows up.
  • The God I serve is neither Republican nor Democrat but Righteous.
  • The God that my mother prayed to and He anointed and answered her.
  • The God that sent His Son to be born in a manger…not a mansion.
  • The God that cares more about character like MLK, Jr.  spoke about than class.
  • The God that delivers and cares about the oppressed and the downtrodden.

Whatever happens in TWO DAYS will still require the Remnant Body of Christ to follow the instructions in 2 Chronicles 7: 14 so that God will heal this land.

Peace,
Rev. Jan Esq.

 

14 Days

 

In 14 days, The American political scene will be changed dramatically.  Every election is politically important, but this upcoming election will affect our great grandchildren.  The next president will appoint a Supreme Court Judge.  God forbid that the issue of slavery comes up, it might be legalized, even though it is already subtly existent now.

As a political science major, I am astounded about what is going on in the political scene.   I learned that politics is about the allocation of public resources. He or She who has the gold makes the rules.  But this current political trash environment is ridiculous.  Politics is no longer based on facts ma’am, but fans. Politics now is about how someone with the most ‘fans’ can become the Executive leader of America.

It is a scary that someone who has no credentials may follow a man who had to have an Ivy League degree in order to run.  It is also scary that politically correct is now allowing racists to ‘come out of the closet’.   An article in the local paper said the local republicans are afraid of distancing themselves from the republican candidate because they did not want to alienate his “fans”.  Trash television has now invaded politics.  Check out some of the ads approved by the candidates.  But, believe it or not, the average voter in America will vote based on what they see on television.  Television is the new “encyclopedia” for the masses… even though what you see on television is propaganda.  The media is the massage.

We know that Clinton has a track record of being an effective politician.  While that is not something to write home about, as all politicians have to ‘bend the truth’ in order to remain a politician.  It is just the nature of politics.  I do not agree with everything she has proposed, but at least we know who she is.   I wish she and Obama had teamed up in 2008.  I really believe she could have then ascended to the Oval Office as President.   When we elect her, we need to make her accountable.  The other guy will be accountable to whom?  Recently learned that the KKK endorsed him.

So in 20 days, will it matter who is elected?  It depends on who you ask.  My Pastor preached that there is not one person who can solve the issues of our times, except the King of Kings and Lord of Lords.  Those of us who are the real believers in God know that sometimes God brings a nation to its knees by allowing catastrophes to happen.  Does that mean, that we are just to stay home and just pray, no we have to exercise our rights that our forefathers died for to give us the right to vote.  Yes, we have voted in the past and the powers that be have discarded and manipulated our votes, but they will have to answer to God for their dishonesty.  But don’t be passive about that, make sure your check goes next to the person you really want to vote for.

Vote for the only candidate that is  at least qualified.  Hold that person accountable when they veer from their campaign rhetoric.  The most important vote that we have is on the local level.  Vote those judges that put our kids behind bars.  Vote for mayors who are accessible.  Vote for representatives who live where you live, local, state and national representatives that represent the people and not special interests.

Tick tock tick tock!!!

UNSUBSCRIBE

7 things to UNSUBSCRIBE to in 2016

  1. Insanity. Doing the same thing you have done for the past 30 years without getting any further ahead or positive results. This applies to church activities, religious, personal, financial, and relational matters.
  2. Baggage. People that pull on you, empty you, but are not there to push you into your destiny. Are you an enabler? Are you the smartest person in your circle? Are you the ‘ go to’ person and never poured into? Even cars need a refilling every now and then or they will get stuck on the road. This also includes enlarging your worldview.
  3. Wasting time and resources. Time is winding down. It is the only commodity that cannot be recycled reused. Some of us are closer to our exit date than our entry date in this world. Get about redeeming the time. Have you been a good steward over the resources God has blessed you with? Don’t spend another discretionary dollar that does not produce another dollar for you. Stop being a consumer and focus on being a producer.
  4. Bad history and past mistakes. It has been said that if you do not remember lessons from the past you are bound to repeat those lessons. What have you learned to avoid in 2016 based on what you went through in 2015? Forgive yourself and move on. You cannot move forward looking in the rear view mirror.
  5. Fairy tale prototype for living your life. There is no such thing as “reality” television shows. Everything presented by the media has been edited. Think about it, if a camera followed you around 24/7 what would it show? I also call this the cotton candy christian clichés’ approach to life. Learn how to effectively minister to the wounded.
  6. Broken stuff. If you can’t fix it, let it go, including relationships, habits, mindsets, and get on with your life. Forgiveness does not mean reconciliation in every case. Live the Serenity Prayer.
  7. Spiritual distractions. The goal of the enemy of your soul is to present circumstances that will overwhelm you so that you burn out and become blind, deaf and mute to the things of God. Blind, in that you can’t see that God is carrying you through the storms of life, deaf in that you cannot hear the real voice of the Holy Spirit, and mute in that the cares of the world prevent you from opening your mouth in praise while you are going through.

Peace until next time,

Rev. Jan Esq

Know more today than yesterday

KNOW MORE TODAY THAN YESTERDAY.

If you are the smartest person in your ‘group”, you need to find another group so that you can enlarge your worldview. Some people, however, want to be HPIC (head person in charge) of their group, circle, and network. They surround themselves with “yes” people that know less than they know, so that they can be revered. Remember the Wizard of Oz? He was great as long as he hid behind the curtain and just manipulated the little people with a booming voice.

You should learn something new every day. You should enlarge your brain capacity, be it in the natural, or most importantly the spiritual on a daily basis. Those terms are not dichotomous but go hand in hand.

In the natural, many people only use a small portion of their brain’s capacity. You should know more on Tuesday than you knew on Monday. Read a book about something that you want to learn more about, or a biography about a historical person. Turn the idiot box off.

In the spiritual, dust off the cobwebs of those vacant areas of your mindset and learn something more about God and His will for your life EVERY DAY. You should also learn a lesson from the ‘hiccups’ of your life; from the mistakes you have made, so that you don’t have to repeat the test again. If you are in the same place spiritually that you were ten years ago, something is wrong. Learn your lessons while dealing with the “little” so you don’t fail when you get to “more than enough.” Drop your “wilderness” mentality.

When you enlarge yourself, your view of God expands as well. He no longer resides in the little box of your church, religion, your tradition, and ‘what you think you know about Him.

Let’s start a conversation on what you learn on a daily, weekly, or monthly basis. Yes, journal the details. How will you use what you have learned to further your goals? What baby steps are you taking towards your destiny? Have you broken a chain of tradition that has not produced Kingdom fruit in your life?

Spring (Spiritual) Cleaning 2015

On this last day of February, the shortest month of the year, it is a good time to check your progress from what you did last year and what you project to do this year. This assessment includes both natural and spiritual. As we enter the first quarter of this year, we should also get a jump on ‘spring (spiritual) cleaning’. Consider the following:

1. Get rid of the baggage. You cannot go forward with the baggage of tradition, and ‘this is the way we do it attitude’ and holding onto wounds that have not healed. Release the people in your life who never pour into your life but drain you on a frequent basis. They take your resources but not your advice about how to fish instead of always asking for a fish.

2. Stop the insanity. Insanity is doing the same thing expecting different results. Church people. If you program has the SAME order of service every Sunday, with the little print “subject to change according to the Holy Spirit” and there are not souls being added to the kingdom like the first century church, then you need to do something different. How about changing the other stuff on the program and state in LARGE print “THE HOLY SPIRIT WILL DETERMINE THE ORDER of SERVICE TODAY. “ I promise you if you let the Holy Spirit have reign, people will not leave the same way they came in. Kill tradition, birth deliverance!!!

Ladies, if you want to lose weight, determine a weekly food menu, eat out of your house and not at the fast food places and restaurants, journal what you eat every day and revise it  based on the weight you are losing. Change your behavior to get the results you want.

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3. Allow a paradigm shift. Look for God outside your “box.” Ask God to enlarge your mental, spiritual, and natural territories. God cannot fit only within the four walls of your church, denomination or ministry. You can learn something new about God every day. Ask God to open your spiritual and discerning eyes so that you can see Him, Monday through Friday. The more I read the more I realize how much I don’t know.  Ask God to clear your ears of ‘wax’ that interferes with you hearing His voice, and not your own voice, or someone else’s voice.

4. Take it one day at a time. My house is so cluttered I have to clean one section at time. I cannot tackle the entire project at once – and I don’t. Same in the spiritual, I ask the Lord, what is it that is standing in the way of me aligning with your perfect will for me? He shows me and then I practice doing it one step at a time.

So take baby steps to your destiny in Christ.  Let the cleaning begin!

Rev. Jan Esq.

Is Jesus the reason for this season?

Is Jesus the reason for the season?
This is a good question, we hear it said, but where is the proof? As we approach the day that the birth of Jesus is celebrated why is it that we see everything else except the real reason for this season? People are engaged in activities that do not reflect the “Christ” in Christmas. There are Christians who use “X” mas. People are spending  millions of dollars in retail outlets owned by persons who do not believe in Christ, and who will be vacationing in January while the consumers are wondering how they are going to pay their bills.

Don’t get me wrong, I like buying my grandchildren gifts that will make them smile and enhance their lives, such as kid bibles with characters in it that look like them, bonds for college educations, toys that are positive, and clothing. This is a good time to make little people very happy. But that is not the only thing we should be doing this season.

We as born again believers should focus on demonstrating that Jesus is the reason for this season.

News flash!!! Jesus was not born on December 25 or at the end of the year in winter weather. This date was inserted and designated by the Roman Catholic Church. In fact, there was no annual celebration of Christ’s birthday in the first three centuries of church history.
The pagans in Rome already celebrated the “sun god” on December 25. To the Roman Catholic Church it seemed like a good idea to offer an alternative celebration on the same day of the year and call it Christ’s birthday. But, don’t get hung up legally on the fact that Jesus probably wasn’t really born during that season.

So what do we know for sure? His birth, was the manifestation of the prophetic words of Isaiah and other prophets in the Old Testament
• Isaiah 7:14—Isaiah prophesies that a pure young woman will give birth to God’s son. |
• Isaiah 9: 6 (KJV)- For unto us a child is born, unto us a son is given: and the government shall be upon his shoulder: and his name shall be called Wonderful, Counsellor, The mighty God, The everlasting Father, The Prince of Peace.
• Micah 5:2—Micah prophesies that Jesus will be born in Bethlehem
Luke 2: 1-7 text describes his version of the birth of Jesus in the King James’ version. Luke, the physician preached to the gentiles about Jesus. We shall examine his story about the birth of Jesus historically and apply it to our 21st century lives. Luke 2:1-7 reports the manifestation of what had already been prophesied.

The historical application

• Census time. (v.1) It was census time and Joseph and Mary had to travel over difficult terrain to get to Joseph’s family lineage town. They traveled 82 miles going up to Bethlehem. Mary did not have to go but she went because of God’s design. God used the census to take Joseph and Mary out of their comfort zones so that He would get the glory for the birth of baby Jesus. There were no baby showers for Mary.
• God takes them out of their ‘comfort zone’ to prove Himself to them. (v.4) it was a multi-day trip over difficult terrain to bring forth the promise of God. That is another lesson.
• Mary and Joseph were not married (v. 5). People in the hometown would have been well aware of the fact that they were not married yet, but strangers in Bethlehem would not have known. It may have been the fact that she was in her third trimester, and he needed to get her into an anonymous environment.
• After time passed, the promise came. (v. 6) They waited until the manifestation of what the angel and the Holy Spirit had declared several months earlier to Mary and Elizabeth came to pass.
• No room in the inn (v.7) Have you ever wondered why there was no room at the inn? I have wondered and offer the following:

o If Jesus had been born in a mansion, with a silver spoon in his mouth, would he have been able to relate to the people that he came to liberate, i.e. the poor in spirit, the downtrodden, the disadvantaged, the sick without health care, widows with their last cup of oil and flour? He cannot say that he had a royal birth like the new prince of England, but He was a Royal King in the land of heaven.

o They needed to be in a place where the shepherds and the public could easily find them. So do not despair when God separates you from others, He has a reason and there is a blessing in being born in a manger. Consider it separation in preparation for service to mankind.
We as born again Christians know that Jesus WAS born. We also know that Jesus IS the reason. . .
We have already mentioned that Jesus not born on December 25, and the fact that the exact date is not necessary to celebrate his birthday. Many historical figures have a physical place that is designated as their birth place. Abraham Lincoln was born HERE! The purpose of which is to memorialize the place where great historical men and women entered this life.
God did not want one place to be designated as Jesus’ birth place because He knew that His plan was for Jesus to be born in every man woman and child’s life so that they would be the memorial designating that Jesus was born!!! We, born again Christians are the historical and spiritual proof that Jesus Christ was born.
Jesus after 2000 years continues to live and be born in men and women who accept Him as their savior. We have the proof in the pudding as he walks and talks with us on a daily basis if we so desire. He lives! That’s another story.

Why is it that Jesus’ birthday is the only one that others receive gifts? On your birthday, you receive gifts. But on Jesus’ birthday millions are spent giving others gifts. This season is the season most retailers clear their deficits. Many people give gifts that the children won’t know where they are the next month. Many people give gifts to people that they have been giving to all year. How you like would to have a birthday party and everyone only gives gifts to others and not you?

So what gift can we bring to Jesus for his birthday? I’m glad you asked that question. We bring what he was born and died for . . . . our lives. The best birthday gift you could give to Jesus is found in Romans 10: 9. It is also the only reciprocal gift to give in that it will benefit you for the rest of your life. It would be the ultimate gift that keeps on giving. It would be a gift that you would not leave home without. It would be a gift that you would “like” for the rest of your life.

For those of you who are already born again Christians you can bring the gift of praise, worship and thanksgiving. While this is a daily habit you already have, as the year ends, you should look back over the year and reflect on how good God has been to you. Even though you have had some sad times, some disappointments, some aches and pain, if you are reading this text, YOU ARE BLESSED!

So if Jesus is the reason for the season, tell the story of Jesus to those you come in contact with. Do not delete the message of Christ in Christmas by being politically correct and saying “Happy Holiday” Say “Blessed Christmas” with a smile. Get some tee- shirts that say “JESUS IS THE REASON for This Season!!! Give a greater donation to your church or charity that helps others year round. Finally, share the love of Jesus all year round.

Blessed Christmas!
Rev. Jan Esq.
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