“It can be a painful challenge to take the necessary time and steps needed for producing every note in life that you must play to hear the sounds of your own voice, work, and creations, which formulates beautiful orchestrations and stories with you, your family, and God.” ~ Jon Barnes
Practicing your daily routines at home, work and play, requires a focus of love for people and God, when serving others with your talent. It is not about your talent. It is about the gift that keeps on giving
Each person has to demonstrate what they are doing and have learned with the lessons and talent given to them by God. Each day is an opportunity to give and share this knowledge.
Develop your skill sets to become the expert in your field and enjoy the business of running a wonderful organization that God can be proud of. Your Quality Work speaks for itself.
Is your business a Good Business that God can be proud of?
Enjoy Today’s Reading
2 Corinthians 8
The Collection for the Lord’s People
8 And now, brothers and sisters, we want you to know about the grace that God has given the Macedonian churches.2 In the midst of a very severe trial, their overflowing joy and their extreme poverty welled up in rich generosity.3 For I testify that they gave as much as they were able, and even beyond their ability. Entirely on their own,4 they urgently pleaded with us for the privilege of sharing in this service to the Lord’s people.5 And they exceeded our expectations: They gave themselves first of all to the Lord, and then by the will of God also to us.6 So we urged Titus, just as he had earlier made a beginning, to bring also to completion this act of grace on your part.7 But since you excel in everything—in faith, in speech, in knowledge, in complete earnestness and in the love we have kindled in you[a]—see that you also excel in this grace of giving.
8 I am not commanding you, but I want to test the sincerity of your love by comparing it with the earnestness of others.9 For you know the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ,that though he was rich, yet for your sake he became poor, so that you through his poverty might become rich.
10 And here is my judgment about what is best for you in this matter. Last year you were the first not only to give but also to have the desire to do so.11 Now finish the work, so that your eager willingness to do it may be matched by your completion of it, according to your means.12 For if the willingness is there, the gift is acceptable according to what one has, not according to what one does not have.
13 Our desire is not that others might be relieved while you are hard pressed, but that there might be equality.14 At the present time your plenty will supply what they need,so that in turn their plenty will supply what you need. The goal is equality,15 as it is written: “The one who gathered much did not have too much, and the one who gathered little did not have too little.”[b]
Titus Sent to Receive the Collection
16 Thanks be to God, who put into the heart of Titus the same concern I have for you.17 For Titus not only welcomed our appeal, but he is coming to you with much enthusiasm and on his own initiative.18 And we are sending along with him the brotherwho is praised by all the churches for his service to the gospel.19 What is more, he was chosen by the churches to accompany us as we carry the offering, which we administer in order to honor the Lord himself and to show our eagerness to help.20 We want to avoid any criticism of the way we administer this liberal gift.21 For we are taking pains to do what is right, not only in the eyes of the Lord but also in the eyes of man.
22 In addition, we are sending with them our brother who has often proved to us in many ways that he is zealous, and now even more so because of his great confidence in you.23 As for Titus, he is my partner and co-worker among you; as for our brothers,they are representatives of the churches and an honor to Christ.24 Therefore show these men the proof of your love and the reason for our pride in you, so that the churches can see it.
“In the Room and At The Gate, the only person you can blame is Yourself for doing or not doing a Good Job for God.”
~ Jon Barnes
In life, many people spend time complaining, murmuring, fixing the problems of others, reading, watching, and doing everything but what God has planned for their lives. I still struggle with this and laugh at myself for wasting precious time on doing so little, for Heaven’s Sake! When you walk into the room, be the One for God! Why argue the mundane when you can focus on completing the sane commandments of love, and fulfill the Love Purpose in your lifestyle. Challenge yourself not to be bad, gossip company.
What you do for God is what you do for yourself. When you walk into the Room, any Room, Keep this in mind. Then your motives will become obvious enough to complete your assignments with respect to God and then yourself. I cannot respect myself, if I don’t respect God first, before completing my work of love. RESPECT is what the word and work means to God and yourself, as you complete each little love job inside every little room you walk into, everywhere you Go. Good Character and Graceful lips Go a long way.
God does not change or waste His time on Hypocrites, because they love themselves and not God! Many get this point wrong! Here is why: True Christians Love God first, by doing the work, word, and obeying the commandments and lifestyle, and then you can see and feel how much God loves you, which is what gives you the wisdom to love yourself (Your Soul) properly. Time, money, schedule, assignments, play, rest, work, worship, and church time flow like daily bread and water from God, as a result. Be yourself and be on task or blame yourself for not doing so. Use and love God’s new solutions.
Are you carrying and studying a lie from Satan’s Bible to look cute or are you daily using The Holy Bible for YOURSELF, doing God’s Work?
Enjoy the Reading.
1 Corinthians 16New International Version (NIV)
The Collection for the Lord’s People
16 Now about the collection for the Lord’s people: Do what I told the Galatianchurches to do.2 On the first day of every week, each one of you should set aside a sum of money in keeping with your income, saving it up, so that when I come no collections will have to be made.3 Then, when I arrive, I will give letters of introduction to the men you approve and send them with your gift to Jerusalem.4 If it seems advisable for me to go also, they will accompany me.
5 After I go through Macedonia, I will come to you—for I will be going through Macedonia.6 Perhaps I will stay with you for a while, or even spend the winter, so that you can help me on my journey, wherever I go.7 For I do not want to see you now and make only a passing visit; I hope to spend some time with you, if the Lord permits.8 But I will stay on at Ephesus until Pentecost,9 because a great door for effective work has opened to me, and there are many who oppose me.
10 When Timothy comes, see to it that he has nothing to fear while he is with you, for he is carrying on the work of the Lord, just as I am.11 No one, then, should treat him with contempt. Send him on his way in peace so that he may return to me. I am expecting him along with the brothers.
12 Now about our brother Apollos: I strongly urged him to go to you with the brothers. He was quite unwilling to go now, but he will go when he has the opportunity.
13 Be on your guard; stand firm in the faith; be courageous; be strong.14 Do everything in love.
15 You know that the household of Stephanas were the first converts in Achaia, and they have devoted themselves to the service of the Lord’s people. I urge you, brothers and sisters,16 to submit to such people and to everyone who joins in the work and labors at it.17 I was glad when Stephanas, Fortunatus and Achaicus arrived, because they have supplied what was lacking from you.18 For they refreshed my spirit and yours also. Such men deserve recognition.
19 The churches in the province of Asia send you greetings. Aquila and Priscilla[a] greet you warmly in the Lord, and so does the church that meets at their house.20 All the brothers and sisters here send you greetings. Greet one another with a holy kiss.
21 I, Paul, write this greeting in my own hand.
22 If anyone does not love the Lord, let that person be cursed! Come, Lord[b]!
23 The grace of the Lord Jesus be with you.
24 My love to all of you in Christ Jesus. Amen.[c]
“When you learn to get the hard jobs done first for God, then you’ll have time and money to travel abroad, sharing the message of hope, love, and faith in a dying world before it’s too late.” ~ Jon Barnes
Easy Work is the mindset of a champion, who embraces the daily mundane task of being obedient, diligent, and persistent in executing and checking off each task done for God. Your work is a delight and you can sleep well into the night, springing up in the morning to check off the next thing. Time tends to fly, with nothing getting by the eyes of champion working for His King, Jesus!
Your work becomes His Work, full of love, quality, honesty, and integrity so that the things you touch turns into God’s Gold of grateful songs, prayers of thanksgiving, with gifts of service and beautiful melodies. You become known as who you are because your thoughtful words and work shines brightly where ever you are.
My true dream has come true, being productive and full of Good News, working really hard for God, while traveling abroad, I had no clue! My message is simple, loud, and clear, for all of those who choose to hear, that God’s Grace is sufficient for you and I, while living for God before we die.
Your worth is quite clear to me, when Christ’s Blood shed on Calvary, washing us all from sin and shame, repent and work for God is all that remains. Your worth and works are priceless in the hands of God, The Almighty, with the current cost of doing good business, a bit pricy. I refuse to be cheap and take shortcuts, considering all of the amazing things that God has done for us.
Are you doing a Good Job in all that you do?
Enjoy The Readings.
1 Corinthians 15New International Version (NIV)
The Resurrection of Christ
15 Now, brothers and sisters, I want to remind you of the gospel I preached to you,which you received and on which you have taken your stand.2 By this gospel you are saved, if you hold firmly to the word I preached to you. Otherwise, you have believed in vain.
3 For what I received I passed on to you as of first importance[a]: that Christ died for our sins according to the Scriptures,4 that he was buried, that he was raised on the third day according to the Scriptures,5 and that he appeared to Cephas,[b] and then to the Twelve.6 After that, he appeared to more than five hundred of the brothers and sisters at the same time, most of whom are still living, though some have fallen asleep.7 Then he appeared to James, then to all the apostles,8 and last of all he appeared to me also, as to one abnormally born.
9 For I am the least of the apostles and do not even deserve to be called an apostle, because I persecuted the church of God.10 But by the grace of God I am what I am, and his grace to me was not without effect. No, I worked harder than all of them—yet not I, but the grace of God that was with me.11 Whether, then, it is I or they, this is what we preach, and this is what you believed.
The Resurrection of the Dead
12 But if it is preached that Christ has been raised from the dead, how can some of you say that there is no resurrection of the dead?13 If there is no resurrection of the dead, then not even Christ has been raised.14 And if Christ has not been raised, our preaching is useless and so is your faith.15 More than that, we are then found to be false witnesses about God, for we have testified about God that he raised Christ from the dead. But he did not raise him if in fact the dead are not raised.16 For if the dead are not raised, then Christ has not been raised either.17 And if Christ has not been raised, your faith is futile; you are still in your sins.18 Then those also who have fallen asleep in Christ are lost.19 If only for this life we have hope in Christ, we are of all people most to be pitied.
20 But Christ has indeed been raised from the dead, the firstfruits of those who have fallen asleep.21 For since death came through a man, the resurrection of the dead comes also through a man.22 For as in Adam all die, so in Christ all will be made alive.23 But each in turn: Christ, the firstfruits; then, when he comes, those who belong to him.24 Then the end will come, when he hands over the kingdom to God the Father after he has destroyed all dominion, authority and power.25 For he must reign until he has put all his enemies under his feet.26 The last enemy to be destroyed is death.27 For he “has put everything under his feet.”[c] Now when it says that “everything” has been put under him, it is clear that this does not include God himself, who put everything under Christ.28 When he has done this, then the Son himself will be made subject to him who put everything under him, so that God may be all in all.
29 Now if there is no resurrection, what will those do who are baptized for the dead? If the dead are not raised at all, why are people baptized for them?30 And as for us, why do we endanger ourselves every hour?31 I face death every day—yes, just as surely as I boast about you in Christ Jesus our Lord.32 If I fought wild beasts in Ephesus with no more than human hopes, what have I gained? If the dead are not raised,
33 Do not be misled: “Bad company corrupts good character.”[e]34 Come back to your senses as you ought, and stop sinning; for there are some who are ignorant of God—I say this to your shame.
The Resurrection Body
35 But someone will ask, “How are the dead raised? With what kind of body will they come?”36 How foolish! What you sow does not come to life unless it dies.37 When you sow, you do not plant the body that will be, but just a seed, perhaps of wheat or of something else.38 But God gives it a body as he has determined, and to each kind of seed he gives its own body.39 Not all flesh is the same: People have one kind of flesh, animals have another, birds another and fish another.40 There are also heavenly bodies and there are earthly bodies; but the splendor of the heavenly bodies is one kind, and the splendor of the earthly bodies is another.41 The sun has one kind of splendor, the moon another and the stars another; and star differs from star in splendor.
42 So will it be with the resurrection of the dead. The body that is sown is perishable, it is raised imperishable;43 it is sown in dishonor, it is raised in glory; it is sown in weakness, it is raised in power;44 it is sown a natural body, it is raised a spiritual body.
If there is a natural body, there is also a spiritual body.45 So it is written: “The first man Adam became a living being”[f]; the last Adam, a life-giving spirit.46 The spiritual did not come first, but the natural, and after that the spiritual.47 The first man was of the dust of the earth; the second man is of heaven.48 As was the earthly man, so are those who are of the earth; and as is the heavenly man, so also are those who are of heaven.49 And just as we have borne the image of the earthly man, so shall we[g] bear the image of the heavenly man.
50 I declare to you, brothers and sisters, that flesh and blood cannot inherit the kingdom of God, nor does the perishable inherit the imperishable.51 Listen, I tell you a mystery: We will not all sleep, but we will all be changed—52 in a flash, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trumpet. For the trumpet will sound, the dead will be raised imperishable, and we will be changed.53 For the perishable must clothe itself with the imperishable, and the mortal with immortality.54 When the perishable has been clothed with the imperishable, and the mortal with immortality, then the saying that is written will come true: “Death has been swallowed up in victory.”[h]
55 “Where, O death, is your victory? Where, O death, is your sting?”[i]
56 The sting of death is sin, and the power of sin is the law.57 But thanks be to God! He gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ.
58 Therefore, my dear brothers and sisters, stand firm. Let nothing move you. Always give yourselves fully to the work of the Lord, because you know that your labor in the Lord is not in vain.
“Many people would like to help, pray, worship, and be a part of God’s Good Team, only to move in the wrong direction, when the opportunity to participate arrives, running away from the finish line.” ~ Jon Barnes
Driving into oncoming traffic is not a good idea, yet we tend to do this everyday. I have been stubborn for years, fighting the wrong battles and creating mayhem. Finally, after I graduated from college, I prayed and asked God to help me turn this car around and become a skillful driver and helper. We must be like the ant, moving, worshiping, praying, working, and driving in the right directions for the greater Good in God!
Sit in the passenger’s seat of your car and try teaching your kids how to drive. Now, let’s have this conversation. LOL! God feels just like that Parent for over 7 Billion living people in the world today. The fact is, we all stink at driving, as if we were all blind, bumping into each other with inflatable bubble cars. But wait! God has a plan for you to drive in the right lane, in the right direction, with the right people, if you pay close attention to God’s Driver’s ED instructions manual.
Nerves of Steel
God must have nerves of steel to allow us keys to his car, allowing us to drive, while learning, growing, and developing. Your driving test will be soon, so please read the bible driver’s ed booklet to understand the rules of the road, so that you don’t kill someone while driving. Remember, never drink and drive. Prison and hell are not the vacation destinations of your driving pleasure. Bless God for Nerves of Steel to point us in the right direction.
Are you at a road block, speed check, asleep at the wheel, or simply to drunk to read this message to drive in your lane with LOVE?
Enjoy Today’s Readings.
1 Corinthians 14New International Version (NIV)
Intelligibility in Worship
14 Follow the way of love and eagerly desire gifts of the Spirit, especially prophecy.2 For anyone who speaks in a tongue[a] does not speak to people but to God. Indeed, no one understands them; they utter mysteries by the Spirit.3 But the one who prophesies speaks to people for their strengthening, encouraging and comfort.4 Anyone who speaks in a tongue edifies themselves, but the one who prophesies edifies the church.5 I would like every one of you to speak in tongues,[b] but I would rather have you prophesy. The one who prophesies is greater than the one who speaks in tongues,[c] unless someone interprets, so that the church may be edified.
6 Now, brothers and sisters, if I come to you and speak in tongues, what good will I be to you, unless I bring you some revelation or knowledge or prophecy or word of instruction?7 Even in the case of lifeless things that make sounds, such as the pipe or harp, how will anyone know what tune is being played unless there is a distinction in the notes?8 Again, if the trumpet does not sound a clear call, who will get ready for battle?9 So it is with you. Unless you speak intelligible words with your tongue, how will anyone know what you are saying? You will just be speaking into the air.10 Undoubtedly there are all sorts of languages in the world, yet none of them is without meaning.11 If then I do not grasp the meaning of what someone is saying, I am a foreigner to the speaker, and the speaker is a foreigner to me.12 So it is with you. Since you are eager for gifts of the Spirit, try to excel in those that build up the church.
13 For this reason the one who speaks in a tongue should pray that they may interpret what they say.14 For if I pray in a tongue, my spirit prays, but my mind is unfruitful.15 So what shall I do? I will pray with my spirit, but I will also pray with my understanding; I will sing with my spirit, but I will also sing with my understanding.16 Otherwise when you are praising God in the Spirit, how can someone else, who is now put in the position of an inquirer,[d] say “Amen” to your thanksgiving, since they do not know what you are saying?17 You are giving thanks well enough, but no one else is edified.
18 I thank God that I speak in tongues more than all of you.19 But in the church I would rather speak five intelligible words to instruct others than ten thousand words in a tongue.
20 Brothers and sisters, stop thinking like children. In regard to evil be infants, but in your thinking be adults.21 In the Law it is written:
“With other tongues and through the lips of foreigners I will speak to this people, but even then they will not listen to me, says the Lord.”[e]
22 Tongues, then, are a sign, not for believers but for unbelievers; prophecy, however, is not for unbelievers but for believers.23 So if the whole church comes together and everyone speaks in tongues, and inquirers or unbelievers come in, will they not say that you are out of your mind?24 But if an unbeliever or an inquirer comes in while everyone is prophesying, they are convicted of sin and are brought under judgment by all,25 as the secrets of their hearts are laid bare. So they will fall down and worship God, exclaiming, “God is really among you!”
Good Order in Worship
26 What then shall we say, brothers and sisters? When you come together, each of youhas a hymn, or a word of instruction, a revelation, a tongue or an interpretation.Everything must be done so that the church may be built up.27 If anyone speaks in a tongue, two—or at the most three—should speak, one at a time, and someone must interpret.28 If there is no interpreter, the speaker should keep quiet in the church and speak to himself and to God.
29 Two or three prophets should speak, and the others should weigh carefully what is said.30 And if a revelation comes to someone who is sitting down, the first speaker should stop.31 For you can all prophesy in turn so that everyone may be instructed and encouraged.32 The spirits of prophets are subject to the control of prophets.33 For God is not a God of disorder but of peace—as in all the congregations of the Lord’s people.
34 Women[f] should remain silent in the churches. They are not allowed to speak, but must be in submission, as the law says.35 If they want to inquire about something, they should ask their own husbands at home; for it is disgraceful for a woman to speak in the church.[g]
36 Or did the word of God originate with you? Or are you the only people it has reached?37 If anyone thinks they are a prophet or otherwise gifted by the Spirit, let them acknowledge that what I am writing to you is the Lord’s command.38 But if anyone ignores this, they will themselves be ignored.[h]
39 Therefore, my brothers and sisters, be eager to prophesy, and do not forbid speaking in tongues.40 But everything should be done in a fitting and orderly way.
“God’s Direction is Specific and His Love is evenly shared and equally given to the sum of the whole or individual parts of Humanity, shining on the just as He shines on the unjust.”
Your job is no better than the job of the next individual, as each job is important to God unto itself. The quality in which you perform this job for God is of the utmost importance and will demonstrate your true character and love for Him. Check and Humble yourself with God’s help. It is not my job to tell you that you stink, smell yourself. It is your job. If you ask me to smell you, I will tell you the truth.
Job Well Done is what I want to hear from God at the end of my race, fighting evil and working for God with all that I have. It is fun to be on a winning team and developing all of your skill sets to help, build, and uplift the team effort and Spirit of God! I am no better than You, yet what you chose to do with your gift and job function is specifically your decision and choice.
Direct your efforts as if God is standing next to you as you work. Let His light shine and not your own, listening, learning, and yielding to the Spirit of God for understanding, guidance, and love. Be patient, not pushy, bossy, or unkind. It can be a challenge to be humble, yet bold in the Lord. Gentle, soft steps travel the farthest, and reaches the most with honey, not vinegar, in my opinion. Learn to Love the same each day as God loves.
Do you still think that you are better and more holier than everyone else and why do you think God can’t get things done without your fake, hypocritical love?
Enjoy Today’s Reading
1 Corinthians 13New International Version (NIV)
13 If I speak in the tongues[a] of men or of angels, but do not have love, I am only a resounding gong or a clanging cymbal.2 If I have the gift of prophecy and can fathom all mysteries and all knowledge, and if I have a faith that can move mountains, but do not have love, I am nothing.3 If I give all I possess to the poor and give over my body to hardship that I may boast,[b] but do not have love, I gain nothing.
4 Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud.5 It does not dishonor others, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs.6 Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth.7 It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres.
8 Love never fails. But where there are prophecies, they will cease; where there are tongues, they will be stilled; where there is knowledge, it will pass away.9 For we know in part and we prophesy in part,10 but when completeness comes, what is in part disappears.11 When I was a child, I talked like a child, I thought like a child, I reasoned like a child. When I became a man, I put the ways of childhood behind me.12 For now we see only a reflection as in a mirror; then we shall see face to face. Now I know in part; then I shall know fully, even as I am fully known.
13 And now these three remain: faith, hope and love. But the greatest of these is love.
“At what cost are we willing to take advantage of people for profit, power, political pursuits, and privileged passage, using evil ways of casual, calculated, destruction, hidden behind fake love and intentions?”
~ Jon Barnes
When I use to disrespect the value of teachers, preachers, parents, and good people trying to help others, I had to learn about the opportunity cost missed by my mouth, manners, misconceptions, and missed communications of truth, wisdom, and understanding. So I grew tired of being exploited by my own ignorance and began to pray for peace, grace, mercy, and love for God’s Goodness in my life.
In the mental game of life, the challenge is won at the heart level of God’s Commandments, which teaches your heart how to train your mind and body from God’s Perspective, so that you do not miss the Good Opportunities God has for you, your family, friends and enemies. Learn to study and understand the order, system, and organization of God’s World, Work, and Thinking. God’s Direction is Specific and His Love is evenly shared and equally given to the sum of the whole or individual parts of Humanity, shining on the just as He shines on the unjust.
When I realized that I can go in the wrong direction, even now, I will stop, adjust, repent, repair, reply, re-read, redo, and rebuild with God’s plans in my heart, mind, and hands. When I do God’s work, I’m not interested in exploiting or taking unfair advantage of others. Don’t let other people pay for your mistakes. You and I know better! It is better that I give more quality of God’s love and less of my own thoughts and ideas, as I love and learn more about God’s Lifestyle Message.
Did you miss your opportunity, being tricked by evil people, and what did it cost you and your family by not treating and loving each person equally?
Enjoy Today’s Reading
1 Corinthians 12New International Version (NIV)
Concerning Spiritual Gifts
12 Now about the gifts of the Spirit, brothers and sisters, I do not want you to be uninformed.2 You know that when you were pagans, somehow or other you were influenced and led astray to mute idols.3 Therefore I want you to know that no one who is speaking by the Spirit of God says, “Jesus be cursed,” and no one can say, “Jesus is Lord,” except by the Holy Spirit.
4 There are different kinds of gifts, but the same Spirit distributes them.5 There are different kinds of service, but the same Lord.6 There are different kinds of working, but in all of them and in everyone it is the same God at work.
7 Now to each one the manifestation of the Spirit is given for the common good.8 To one there is given through the Spirit a message of wisdom, to another a message of knowledge by means of the same Spirit,9 to another faith by the same Spirit, to another gifts of healing by that one Spirit,10 to another miraculous powers, to another prophecy, to another distinguishing between spirits, to another speaking in different kinds of tongues,[a] and to still another the interpretation of tongues.[b]11 All these are the work of one and the same Spirit, and he distributes them to each one, just as he determines.
Unity and Diversity in the Body
12 Just as a body, though one, has many parts, but all its many parts form one body,so it is with Christ.13 For we were all baptized by[c] one Spirit so as to form one body—whether Jews or Gentiles, slave or free—and we were all given the one Spirit to drink.14 Even so the body is not made up of one part but of many.
15 Now if the foot should say, “Because I am not a hand, I do not belong to the body,” it would not for that reason stop being part of the body.16 And if the ear should say, “Because I am not an eye, I do not belong to the body,” it would not for that reason stop being part of the body.17 If the whole body were an eye, where would the sense of hearing be? If the whole body were an ear, where would the sense of smell be?18 But in fact God has placed the parts in the body, every one of them, just as he wanted them to be.19 If they were all one part, where would the body be?20 As it is, there are many parts, but one body.
21 The eye cannot say to the hand, “I don’t need you!” And the head cannot say to the feet, “I don’t need you!”22 On the contrary, those parts of the body that seem to be weaker are indispensable,23 and the parts that we think are less honorable we treat with special honor. And the parts that are unpresentable are treated with special modesty,24 while our presentable parts need no special treatment. But God has put the body together, giving greater honor to the parts that lacked it,25 so that there should be no division in the body, but that its parts should have equal concern for each other.26 If one part suffers, every part suffers with it; if one part is honored, every part rejoices with it.
27 Now you are the body of Christ, and each one of you is a part of it.28 And God has placed in the church first of all apostles, second prophets, third teachers, then miracles, then gifts of healing, of helping, of guidance, and of different kinds of tongues.29 Are all apostles? Are all prophets? Are all teachers? Do all work miracles?30 Do all have gifts of healing? Do all speak in tongues[d]? Do all interpret?31 Now eagerly desire the greater gifts.
“When you pray, think, work, travel, help, and play, try to do good for the many and not just for your selfish gain, since what you say, think, pray, and do matters.” ~ Jon Barnes
Shortcuts look good at a glance until you study the map and unfold the trap. God’s maps are thorough, clear and precise to make your journey rather nicely. Make a point to take extra time to study your map before you travel in the direction of choice, avoiding unnecessary accidents. Follow the Directions.
Many choose the wrong choices, even when we have seen or read the manual. What attracts us to the wrong side of the street is the perception of lust the devil sells with his songs, stories, money, games, fame, smile, dance, meat, and drink! Discipline versus lust is all about us. Are you following your practice schedule and directions from God?
Examine you examples before your exam takes place. Otherwise you may lose your race, Execute your Good lifestyle everywhere in every place. Each step you take is close to the end, keeping in step with God, my friend. Follow the Directions of God.
Are you a part of the many, who are dancing with the devil, following evil directions?
Enjoy Today’s Reading.
1 Corinthians 11New International Version (NIV)
11 1 Follow my example, as I follow the example of Christ.
On Covering the Head in Worship
2 I praise you for remembering me in everything and for holding to the traditions just as I passed them on to you.3 But I want you to realize that the head of every man is Christ, and the head of the woman is man,[a] and the head of Christ is God.4 Every man who prays or prophesies with his head covered dishonors his head.5 But every woman who prays or prophesies with her head uncovered dishonors her head—it is the same as having her head shaved.6 For if a woman does not cover her head, she might as well have her hair cut off; but if it is a disgrace for a woman to have her hair cut off or her head shaved, then she should cover her head.
7 A man ought not to cover his head,[b] since he is the image and glory of God; but woman is the glory of man.8 For man did not come from woman, but woman from man;9 neither was man created for woman, but woman for man.10 It is for this reason that a woman ought to have authority over her own[c] head, because of the angels.11 Nevertheless, in the Lord woman is not independent of man, nor is man independent of woman.12 For as woman came from man, so also man is born of woman. But everything comes from God.
13 Judge for yourselves: Is it proper for a woman to pray to God with her head uncovered?14 Does not the very nature of things teach you that if a man has long hair, it is a disgrace to him,15 but that if a woman has long hair, it is her glory? For long hair is given to her as a covering.16 If anyone wants to be contentious about this, we have no other practice—nor do the churches of God.
Correcting an Abuse of the Lord’s Supper
17 In the following directives I have no praise for you, for your meetings do more harm than good.18 In the first place, I hear that when you come together as a church, there are divisions among you, and to some extent I believe it.19 No doubt there have to be differences among you to show which of you have God’s approval.20 So then, when you come together, it is not the Lord’s Supper you eat,21 for when you are eating, some of you go ahead with your own private suppers. As a result, one person remains hungry and another gets drunk.22 Don’t you have homes to eat and drink in? Or do you despise the church of God by humiliating those who have nothing? What shall I say to you? Shall I praise you? Certainly not in this matter!
23 For I received from the Lord what I also passed on to you: The Lord Jesus, on the night he was betrayed, took bread,24 and when he had given thanks, he broke it and said, “This is my body, which is for you; do this in remembrance of me.”25 In the same way, after supper he took the cup, saying, “This cup is the new covenant in my blood;do this, whenever you drink it, in remembrance of me.”26 For whenever you eat this bread and drink this cup, you proclaim the Lord’s death until he comes.
27 So then, whoever eats the bread or drinks the cup of the Lord in an unworthy manner will be guilty of sinning against the body and blood of the Lord.28 Everyone ought to examine themselves before they eat of the bread and drink from the cup.29 For those who eat and drink without discerning the body of Christ eat and drink judgment on themselves.30 That is why many among you are weak and sick, and a number of you have fallen asleep.31 But if we were more discerning with regard to ourselves, we would not come under such judgment.32 Nevertheless, when we are judged in this way by the Lord, we are being disciplined so that we will not be finally condemned with the world.
33 So then, my brothers and sisters, when you gather to eat, you should all eat together.34 Anyone who is hungry should eat something at home, so that when you meet together it may not result in judgment.
“There are no shortcuts to producing quality work, studying properly on time, and learning Good life lessons for thorough training, practicing and preparation.” ~Jon Barnes
There are a number of steps you can take to achieve and master a goal and cross the finish line. Try not to waste steps, as you may need them to finish the race. The extra steps you save can be used to help others cross the finish line as well. God knows how much steps you need and He knows how many you will share, for the greater Good.
As a kid, I would gamble my winning hand away, because I thought the grass was greener on the other side of the Shortcut, only to find out that I was a FOOL. Hold onto God and your winning hand. Don’t show everyone your cards, just smile and love them. The devil will try to steal your deal, with both your eyes opened and focused on him. Don’t blink or give up your winning hand!
God is the dealer of the deck from the Universe He has Created. I can personally say, Thank You God for the hand that I have and there is never a need to gamble or lust after something that is not mine or in my hand. I don’t want something else. Be content, thankful and satisfied. Lazy people gamble, trying to enslave, cheat, or steal, by using shortcuts, illusions, and other schemes or scams. You’ve been warned!
Are you paying attention to God, The Dealer in your life with all of the answers and solutions?
Enjoy Today’s Reading.
1 Corinthians 10New International Version (NIV)
Warnings From Israel’s History
10 For I do not want you to be ignorant of the fact, brothers and sisters, that our ancestors were all under the cloud and that they all passed through the sea.2 They were all baptized into Moses in the cloud and in the sea.3 They all ate the same spiritual food4 and drank the same spiritual drink; for they drank from the spiritual rockthat accompanied them, and that rock was Christ.5 Nevertheless, God was not pleased with most of them; their bodies were scattered in the wilderness.
6 Now these things occurred as examples to keep us from setting our hearts on evil things as they did.7 Do not be idolaters, as some of them were; as it is written: “The people sat down to eat and drink and got up to indulge in revelry.”[a]8 We should not commit sexual immorality, as some of them did—and in one day twenty-three thousand of them died.9 We should not test Christ,[b] as some of them did—and were killed by snakes.10 And do not grumble, as some of them did—and were killed by the destroying angel.
11 These things happened to them as examples and were written down as warnings for us, on whom the culmination of the ages has come.12 So, if you think you are standing firm, be careful that you don’t fall!13 No temptation[c] has overtaken you except what is common to mankind. And God is faithful; he will not let you be tempted[d] beyond what you can bear. But when you are tempted,[e] he will also provide a way out so that you can endure it.
Idol Feasts and the Lord’s Supper
14 Therefore, my dear friends, flee from idolatry.15 I speak to sensible people; judge for yourselves what I say.16 Is not the cup of thanksgiving for which we give thanks a participation in the blood of Christ? And is not the bread that we break a participation in the body of Christ?17 Because there is one loaf, we, who are many, are one body,for we all share the one loaf.
18 Consider the people of Israel: Do not those who eat the sacrifices participate in the altar?19 Do I mean then that food sacrificed to an idol is anything, or that an idol is anything?20 No, but the sacrifices of pagans are offered to demons, not to God, and I do not want you to be participants with demons.21 You cannot drink the cup of the Lord and the cup of demons too; you cannot have a part in both the Lord’s table and the table of demons.22 Are we trying to arouse the Lord’s jealousy? Are we stronger than he?
The Believer’s Freedom
23 “I have the right to do anything,” you say—but not everything is beneficial. “I have the right to do anything”—but not everything is constructive.24 No one should seek their own good, but the good of others.
25 Eat anything sold in the meat market without raising questions of conscience,26 for, “The earth is the Lord’s, and everything in it.”[f]
27 If an unbeliever invites you to a meal and you want to go, eat whatever is put before you without raising questions of conscience.28 But if someone says to you, “This has been offered in sacrifice,” then do not eat it, both for the sake of the one who told you and for the sake of conscience.29 I am referring to the other person’s conscience, not yours. For why is my freedom being judged by another’s conscience?30 If I take part in the meal with thankfulness, why am I denounced because of something I thank God for?
31 So whether you eat or drink or whatever you do, do it all for the glory of God.32 Do not cause anyone to stumble, whether Jews, Greeks or the church of God—33 even as I try to please everyone in every way. For I am not seeking my own good but the good of many, so that they may be saved.
“I’m learning to say and do what I mean, without hiding behind mean, jolly jokes, mysterious motives, and mindless murmurings, intentionally hurting the feelings of others.” ~ Jon Barnes
Most of my jokes are directed at myself, to make me laugh and become reminded of how far I’ve traveled in learning about personal growth, self reflection and observation. I notice how other people handle their problems, provide feedback, and draw their own conclusions. As a result, I map out how I would handle that problem, which helps me to prepare for similar situations, should this problem occur in the future. The joke is on me, so that I develop better building material to withstand the bombs people can throw onto personal bridges. Preparation makes sense.
Say what you mean and mean what you say, while being kind, gentle, and humble. I don’t have all of the answers, and I can only share my experiences as a tool of references. Your vantage point is to have enough good information and resources to combat the issues you will face and decisions you must make. My job is not to live for you, but to encourage and support your Good Lifestyle and choices. Staying connected to God and His Commandments will be the voice of your opinion, from your actions, before you can say a word. The pen is mightier than the sword.
Say what you mean without being mean, malicious, vindictive or harsh. Emotions tend to drive people and their destiny, leaving their mind, body, spirit, and God out of the process. The devil then takes your meaning and twists it all around to stop real communication, love, and respect for the Good Life. In confusion, you kill yourself in the battle of smoke and mirrors, created by your own evil, thinking that you are doing Good. The joke is on you, as you watch your bridge blow up, right in front of you, with your own, self-inflicted TNT or atomic bomb! Close your mouth and save your bridge, is my new motto.
Since you are so smart and quick to speak, did your mouth disqualify you from winning your race and Good Standing with God?
Enjoy Today’s Reading.
1 Corinthians 9New International Version (NIV)
Paul’s Rights as an Apostle
9 Am I not free? Am I not an apostle? Have I not seen Jesus our Lord? Are you not the result of my work in the Lord?2 Even though I may not be an apostle to others, surely I am to you! For you are the seal of my apostleship in the Lord.
3 This is my defense to those who sit in judgment on me.4 Don’t we have the right to food and drink?5 Don’t we have the right to take a believing wife along with us, as do the other apostles and the Lord’s brothers and Cephas[a]?6 Or is it only I and Barnabaswho lack the right to not work for a living?
7 Who serves as a soldier at his own expense? Who plants a vineyard and does not eat its grapes? Who tends a flock and does not drink the milk?8 Do I say this merely on human authority? Doesn’t the Law say the same thing?9 For it is written in the Law of Moses: “Do not muzzle an ox while it is treading out the grain.”[b] Is it about oxen that God is concerned?10 Surely he says this for us, doesn’t he? Yes, this was written for us, because whoever plows and threshes should be able to do so in the hope of sharing in the harvest.11 If we have sown spiritual seed among you, is it too much if we reap a material harvest from you?12 If others have this right of support from you, shouldn’t we have it all the more?
But we did not use this right. On the contrary, we put up with anything rather than hinder the gospel of Christ.
13 Don’t you know that those who serve in the temple get their food from the temple, and that those who serve at the altar share in what is offered on the altar?14 In the same way, the Lord has commanded that those who preach the gospel should receive their living from the gospel.
15 But I have not used any of these rights. And I am not writing this in the hope that you will do such things for me, for I would rather die than allow anyone to deprive me of this boast.16 For when I preach the gospel, I cannot boast, since I am compelled to preach. Woe to me if I do not preach the gospel!17 If I preach voluntarily, I have a reward; if not voluntarily, I am simply discharging the trust committed to me.18 What then is my reward? Just this: that in preaching the gospel I may offer it free of charge,and so not make full use of my rights as a preacher of the gospel.
Paul’s Use of His Freedom
19 Though I am free and belong to no one, I have made myself a slave to everyone, to win as many as possible.20 To the Jews I became like a Jew, to win the Jews. To those under the law I became like one under the law (though I myself am not under the law),so as to win those under the law.21 To those not having the law I became like one not having the law (though I am not free from God’s law but am under Christ’s law), so as to win those not having the law.22 To the weak I became weak, to win the weak. I have become all things to all people so that by all possible means I might save some.23 I do all this for the sake of the gospel, that I may share in its blessings.
The Need for Self-Discipline
24 Do you not know that in a race all the runners run, but only one gets the prize? Runin such a way as to get the prize.25 Everyone who competes in the games goes into strict training. They do it to get a crown that will not last, but we do it to get a crown that will last forever.26 Therefore I do not run like someone running aimlessly; I do not fight like a boxer beating the air.27 No, I strike a blow to my body and make it my slave so that after I have preached to others, I myself will not be disqualified for the prize.
“Add up the cost and look at the distance you have traveled, see the picture you made as you unraveled, to know if you are headed into God’s Palace or Blistery Basement.” ~ Jon Barnes
In my Dream
In my dream, I called up my father and talked to him. Through my mind’s phone and video I traveled and sat with him. Talking to the family, listening to live music being recorded– connecting with other musicians was my focus. We talked a lot about Jesus as He continued to feed us, living the life with my family of servants of our God and King. I am not the judge, I am learning to be the obedient, humble, servant son!
Do You Serve
Who do you serve as you examine the roads you travel? Did you choose the road full of loneliness, shame and babble? Lean of God, trust and don’t just take the Word from us, but go to the source. Eat, be merry and rejoice, that you experience God’s Grace and Love with your own work, faith, and choice. Be careful how you serve, by accidentally stepping on some nerves, while you try and help with love each day. Always review, and examine your approach, you are not always right with your boast. Learn from your mistakes, they are all over the place. Stop acting like God, or you’ll become a fraud, pretending to serve, yet lost in your deception. Be the Good Wife, Person, or Servant from Conception.
Each day gets better and better, since the first day that I met her, God showed me the one that I would play at her wedding. But to my surprise, I soon realized that I would be that groom of this bride at my wedding. God said to Marry, this woman full of honesty, smarts, looks, Love, and savvy, yet my flesh wanted to hold off, wait, and terry. Finally, my girl got the memo and helped me through my window to make the choice of right or wrong. God said to me, “Marry Her”, I did and actually carried her to the chapel and bedroom with life’s lesson, kids and possibilities. Stop, think and wonder, who I could have plundered, if I didn’t learn the honest lesson of Humility.
Make Me Proud
I’m so proud of my kids, they actually listened, learned, worked, loved and did. The fruit from my tree didn’t fall far from me, living the things I taught, preached, lived each day. They considered their own thoughts and tests and studied God’s Art, learning from Him to see what is best, fixing their mistakes in every way. I smile, love and admire in their travels they seek my help, yet I’m retired. Even when they know the way, still they call and say, Dad I love you– what do you think about this? Thanking God everyday, in the race we must pray to give, listen, and share each word with love, a hug, and a kiss! With God, Go The Distance!
In your service for God with each passing hour, with your kids, are you a stumbling block, full of wisdom, knowledge; yet denying the real Power of Love of God in your life?
Enjoy the Reading.
1 Corinthians 8New International Version (NIV)
Concerning Food Sacrificed to Idols
8 Now about food sacrificed to idols: We know that “We all possess knowledge.” But knowledge puffs up while love builds up.2 Those who think they know something do not yet know as they ought to know.3 But whoever loves God is known by God.[a]
4 So then, about eating food sacrificed to idols: We know that “An idol is nothing at all in the world” and that “There is no God but one.”5 For even if there are so-called gods, whether in heaven or on earth (as indeed there are many “gods” and many “lords”),6 yet for us there is but one God, the Father, from whom all things came and for whom we live; and there is but one Lord, Jesus Christ, through whom all things came and through whom we live.
7 But not everyone possesses this knowledge. Some people are still so accustomed to idols that when they eat sacrificial food they think of it as having been sacrificed to a god, and since their conscience is weak, it is defiled.8 But food does not bring us near to God; we are no worse if we do not eat, and no better if we do.
9 Be careful, however, that the exercise of your rights does not become a stumbling block to the weak.10 For if someone with a weak conscience sees you, with all your knowledge, eating in an idol’s temple, won’t that person be emboldened to eat what is sacrificed to idols?11 So this weak brother or sister, for whom Christ died, is destroyed by your knowledge.12 When you sin against them in this way and wound their weak conscience, you sin against Christ.13 Therefore, if what I eat causes my brother or sister to fall into sin, I will never eat meat again, so that I will not cause them to fall.