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Monthly Archives: December 2011

Room to Improve

Most of us have areas in our life that know we could improve upon. For me it is physical fitness, I know I should be more faithful in the gym and my eating habits. I would really like to get back into a shape other than round LOL. For others it is better financial management. You are looking forward to the day that they can have more money than month, and your change is no longer strange. Still others wish they could improve their success in their love lives. Everything else is great they just wish they had someone to share it all with. What all people who want to improve have in common is that they know they can do better. The amazing contradiction though is there are people who need to do better but firmly believe that everything is just fine, and there is nothing to improve upon.  I believe there is always room for improvement.

The truth of the matter is change is difficult, and making improvements is even more difficult. For many it is easier to pretend that everything is OK than to make proactive steps to have different results. The difficulty with making improvements is that it only comes from doing the opposite of what you do that is not getting the results you desire.  We must learn to let go of what is adding no value to our lives.  Doing the opposite of something we have been doing is difficult because it feels unnatural. When you have done something long enough you can convince yourself that it is just the way you are. The reality is you can be any way you choose to be. A simple person can choose to start using good judgement, and a fool can begin to show understanding if they want to.

Today is your chance to change what you don’t like. Make a decision to make room to improve, to get better, to get stronger.  The things that you are dissatisfied with in life are subject to your decisions to change and improve…your situation is NOT permanent..or at least it doesn’t have to be. We all have the power to make different choices that will allow our present and future to be radically different from our pasts. All of us have the choice to be the opposite of what we don’t like we just have to have the courage to step out of our old comfort zone and into the new and improved!

Making Room to Improve,
Pastor Derrick Phillips

Prayer:
Father, I thank you for every person reading this blog today.  Draw us closer to your presence and allow your Holy Spirit to empower us to make the necessary decisions that will improve every area in life where we are not satisfied.  I thank you for the change that is coming, for we know we will be better for it!  In Jesus’ Name.  Amen!

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Posted by on December 15, 2011 in Uncategorized

 

Empty Promises

Proverbs 25:14 (NLT), “A person who promises a gift but doesn’t give it is like clouds and wind that bring no rain.” 

As we near the end of the year, I can’t help but reflect upon a recent conversation I had with a friend in ministry about overcoming the disappointments that 2011 seemingly brought upon him.  His regret was that he wasted time putting faith in the promises of people who eventually broken them.   There is nothing worse than an unfulfilled promise. If we are honest, most people are like little kids who faithfully trust in the promises that people make to us.

Society has even adopted a culture where we faithfully trust in the word someone gives us.  When someone tell us that we are going to get something we start looking forward to when it is coming. If we order something on-line we may track it every couple of hours until it shows up. If someone in the office promises us a report by a certain time, we are counting down in our heads until it shows up. When we know that something has been promised and it looks like it is right around the corner we can’t wait until we have it in our hands. Unfortunately, we also know that sinking feeling of finding out that what was promised will not be delivered.  If you ever experienced this, you understand the feeling.

The truth of the matter is most of us can take a lot of things but disappointment from broken promises is the reason why many relationships, marriages, and friendships have been derailed. When we have expectations of something or someone we internally we need it to come to fruition.   After all they have given their word, and we believe that people’s word is their bond.  We need storm clouds to produce rain. We need things to be just what they look like. When looks, promises, or people deceive us we are not sure how to process the world. We feel better about the world when looks are not deceiving and we get what we are expecting.  As the scripture in Proverbs states, its like a storm cloud with no rain…in essence, empty promises.

Today take the time to examine if you can deliver what you say you can.  Whether you’ve been the recipient or the giver of the empty promise, know that it is never too late to at least make it right.  The issue that many people have is the desire to be all things to all people. There are some things that you can do and some that you just can’t the key is knowing the difference. While we often want to be seen as capable we are better off when we tell people I can’t do that. When people know what you can do is what you will do, and what you can’t do you won’t promise, you become a person that people know what to expect of. Ultimately it is better to be known for what you can do, than known for what you couldn’t deliver.

Promise Keeper
Pastor Derrick Phillips

Prayer:
Father, I pray for every person who has been the recipient of empty/broken promises.  I pray that you will release regret, shame, and disappointment so that they can move forward.  Have your way in their life, and allow the rain to fall in every dry place.  We Give you praise for your grace!  In Jesus’ Name.  Amen!

 
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Posted by on December 8, 2011 in Uncategorized

 

Did I Do That!??

Have you ever gotten tired of doing good?  Does it seem like the mantra of nice guys/gals always finish last?   We look at our lives and wonder why do I play by the rules and work within the system when it seems that those who break the rules are the ones who prosper. So we decide maybe it is time to take a walk on the wild side. We make the decision that it is time for me to do what everyone else is doing, that way I can get what everyone else has. We figure I won’t do anything too terrible, just enough to get better results than I am getting now. After all, if I do a little I won’t be as bad as those other people but I will get more than I am getting now.

Proverbs 18:3 says , “Doing wrong leads to disgrace, and scandalous behavior brings contempt.” What we often forget is that it is not what we gain when we do wrong that matters it is what we lose. When we step outside of our character to get a momentary benefit we often miss that we lose our good name, and moral high ground. So the question that we really have to grapple with is not what do I get, but how much do I cost. The subtle gain that we get by doing wrong is never worth the price of your good name, reputation and righteous character. Doing wrong is like getting pregnant, in for a penny in for a pound, there is no half way. Once you start down that path there rarely is any turning back.  You never want to be in a position of kicking yourself and asking yourself the question, “Did I Do that?”

Instead of looking at why you can do wrong, look at why you should continue to do right. It’s probably not very popular these days because of all the various things that we are faced with.  But doing right keeps you away from scandal, pain, treachery, and within the will of God. Being a person of integrity is irreplaceable. Your name, reputation, and credibility is one of the greatest commodities that you can have.  Once you trade it in you can’t get it back. Many times we don’t see the cost of what we have done until it is well too late. Once we have lost our name, fell into disgrace, and become the scorn of others we can’t go back to who we were.  Ecclesiastes 7:1 says, “A good name is better than precious ointment…”  It is always better to keep what you have and let the Lord make a way, than to trade who you and only have the memories of who you were.  Maintain the integrity of who you are, no matter where you are.

Pastor Derrick Phillips

 

 
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Posted by on December 7, 2011 in Uncategorized

 

Finish What You Started!

A lazy person takes food in their hand but don’t even lift it to their mouth. Proverbs 26:15

This past Sunday I started a sermon series entitled, “FINISH.”  I preached from Zechariah 4, in which the prophet was given a message to tell Zerubbabel to finish the work that he started.  For many of us starting things is not the issue, it is finishing the things that we start where we have an issue. If we look around our homes we have unfinished projects everywhere. Degrees that haven’t been completed.  Business plans that you’ve started but never implemented.  Looking at your bookshelves we have plenty of half read books that we don’t know how they end. If we look through notebooks, we have the unfinished plans for businesses just waiting to be completed. We have unfinished workout plans, that have us a mere 25 pounds away from our goal weight. A lot of us still have unfinished shopping lists for Christmas.

The truth of the matter is for many it is finishing the job that is most difficult part of the job. We get off to a great start and have everything in our hands, but it is those last few feet, those last few pounds, and those last few items that just never seem to get done. What we often miss is that almost actually does not count. If we are going to do the heavy lifting of getting started, the only real reward is heavier lifting of finishing the job.  As the scripture in Proverbs says, “A lazy person takes food in your hand, but doesn’t even lift it to put it in their mouth.”  How many of us have things in our hand but have not finished the process?

Some of the reasons why many people do not finish things they start are 1) distractions   2) procrastination   3) laziness  4) lack of motivation  5) lack of resources.  No matter what the reasons are that are keeping you from finishing, your reasons are no match for God!  God is so much bigger than your deadline, your lack of support, your lack of resources…  Matthew 19:26, “With man it is impossible, but with God all things are possible.”

Today, take the time to finish what you have started. Before you begin another book, start another project or chase another dream finish one-off. Starting something may make us feel good, but when we see the remains of all the unfinished projects we are forced to realize that starting things and not finishing them is simply a waste. So pick one of the projects that you loved and fell out with and fall back in love. Once you finish that one, take a shot at finishing the next one. You won’t get the thrill of starting, but you will see the joy of finishing.

 

 

Determined To FINISH STRONG!
Pastor Derrick Phillips

Prayer:
Father, today I pray for every person that reads today.  I pray that you will anoint us to bring closure to unfinished business.  We renounce laziness, procrastination, and even fatal distractions that will come to derail us from reaching our destiny.  Thank you for the blessing of Finishing!  In Jesus’ Name. Amen!

 
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Posted by on December 6, 2011 in Uncategorized