Plumbing

Hi Peeps,

Today’s Quote

“If you’re feeling spiritually clogged it’s time to check your inner plumbing.”

TB

Clogged

Our mind, body, and spirit are like a plumbing system. When we put good things into them, they are able to pass easily and efficiently. When we put bad things into them, over time, they begin to slow us down, eventually causing a massive clog. Because these bad things are ingested gradually, we foolishly think we can solve them by using quick fixes. Well friends, Drano is not going to help someone that is spiritually clogged. When things are that bad, we have to go under the sink and consult the Holy Plumber.

Dislodge

By repenting, admitting that we’ve fallen short and have gotten ourselves into troubles we can’t fix on our own, God can then help us unclog our plumbing. Like a skilled craftsman, He’ll take apart the J pipe and will expertly remove all of the junk we’ve ingested, making it work like new. Now if you’ve ever unclogged one, you know what nasty junk that can be found. It’s the same thing for our spiritual, mental, and physical lives. So instead of going back to those junky deeds, turn to Christ and the Holy Manual, the Bible to understand how to properly use your plumbing.

Today’s Question

Are you spiritually backed up and need a drain?

Enjoy the reading

Zechariah 1

1 In November of the second year of King Darius’s reign, the LORD gave this message to the prophet Zechariah son of Berekiah and grandson of Iddo: 2 “I, the LORD, was very angry with your ancestors. 3 Therefore, say to the people, ‘This is what the LORD of Heaven’s Armies says: Return to me, and I will return to you, says the LORD of Heaven’s Armies.’ 4 Don’t be like your ancestors who would not listen or pay attention when the earlier prophets said to them, ‘This is what the LORD of Heaven’s Armies says: Turn from your evil ways, and stop all your evil practices.’ 5 “Where are your ancestors now? They and the prophets are long dead. 6 But everything I said through my servants the prophets happened to your ancestors, just as I said. As a result, they repented and said, ‘We have received what we deserved from the LORD of Heaven’s Armies. He has done what he said he would do.’” 7 Three months later, on February 15, the LORD sent another message to the prophet Zechariah son of Berekiah and grandson of Iddo. 8 In a vision during the night, I saw a man sitting on a red horse that was standing among some myrtle trees in a small valley. Behind him were riders on red, brown, and white horses. 9 I asked the angel who was talking with me, “My lord, what do these horses mean?” “I will show you,” the angel replied. 10 The rider standing among the myrtle trees then explained, “They are the ones the LORD has sent out to patrol the earth.” 11 Then the other riders reported to the angel of the LORD, who was standing among the myrtle trees, “We have been patrolling the earth, and the whole earth is at peace.” 12 Upon hearing this, the angel of the LORD prayed this prayer: “O LORD of Heaven’s Armies, for seventy years now you have been angry with Jerusalem and the towns of Judah. How long until you again show mercy to them?” 13 And the LORD spoke kind and comforting words to the angel who talked with me. 14 Then the angel said to me, “Shout this message for all to hear: ‘This is what the LORD of Heaven’s Armies says: My love for Jerusalem and Mount Zion is passionate and strong. 15 But I am very angry with the other nations that are now enjoying peace and security. I was only a little angry with my people, but the nations inflicted harm on them far beyond my intentions. 16 “‘Therefore, this is what the LORD says: I have returned to show mercy to Jerusalem. My Temple will be rebuilt, says the LORD of Heaven’s Armies, and measurements will be taken for the reconstruction of Jerusalem. ’ 17 “Say this also: ‘This is what the LORD of Heaven’s Armies says: The towns of Israel will again overflow with prosperity, and the LORD will again comfort Zion and choose Jerusalem as his own.’” 18 Then I looked up and saw four animal horns. 19 “What are these?” I asked the angel who was talking with me. He replied, “These horns represent the nations that scattered Judah, Israel, and Jerusalem.” 20 Then the LORD showed me four blacksmiths. 21 “What are these men coming to do?” I asked. The angel replied, “These four horns—these nations—scattered and humbled Judah. Now these blacksmiths have come to terrify those nations and throw them down and destroy them.” Haggai 2Zechariah 2  Parallel Compare

Starve

Hi Peeps,

Today’s Quote

“In order to be free of what consumes you, you must starve it out.”

TB

Presto

Sin doesn’t just go away by praying to God to remove it from your life. No, you must do the work to actively stop the practice of immoral behavior. More to the point, just because it isn’t easy does not mean God gave you free license to live in a particular sin. Don’t be fooled into thinking that because you ‘tried’ means that you get a pass. Remember that God alone knows the true motives of our hearts.

Root Cause

Sin is a symptom of a greater issue. It’s the external evidence of an internal problem. For this reason, just merely abstaining from the act does not change the real issue. Sure, you may go for some time without the deed, but if the problem is just tamped down, eventually you will fall back into old patterns. So whether you’re struggling from lust, pride, anger, jealousy, or any other affliction, if you’re truly looking for the answer, you must come to God correctly, by asking Him to reveal what ails you.

Holy Solution

Remember that sin is the act of fulfilling a need that only God can. It will never provide you with the peace you’re truly after. Instead of asking God to remove the behavior, humbly submit to Him and ask the honest questions. Ask Him to reveal the true nature of your behavior. Ask Him to show you what ails you. Reflect on the Word to better understand the needs of God’s children. As he reveals to you what these issues are, ask for direction. By doing the deep work, God will honor your resolve by imparting the wisdom necessary to break away from sinful behaviors by strengthening your relationship with Him

Today’s Question

Are you ready to draw closer to God to change your ways?

Enjoy the reading

Hosea 3

1 Then the LORD said to me, “Go and love your wife again, even though she commits adultery with another lover. This will illustrate that the LORD still loves Israel, even though the people have turned to other gods and love to worship them. ” 2 So I bought her back for fifteen pieces of silver and five bushels of barley and a measure of wine. 3 Then I said to her, “You must live in my house for many days and stop your prostitution. During this time, you will not have sexual relations with anyone, not even with me. ” 4 This shows that Israel will go a long time without a king or prince, and without sacrifices, sacred pillars, priests, or even idols! 5 But afterward the people will return and devote themselves to the LORD their God and to David’s descendant, their king. In the last days, they will tremble in awe of the LORD and of his goodness.

Just Mercy

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Hi Peeps,

Today’s Quote

“There is nothing more loving, merciful, and just than a person who is willing to tell you God’s honest truth.”~TB

Humble Pie

I once had a client who was dangling a promising contract over my head, but instead of honoring it, they would tease out assignments. They paid well and on time, but the deal was exploitative and I hated it. I called my mom and dad to talk about it. Furious about the change in terms I vowed to drop the client. My mother calmly and gently brought up the point that I was not in the position to drop clients. I had financial responsibilities and did not have the extra resources to be choosey about who I worked with. It was a tough thing to hear. My ego was not happy to ingest this news, but I am so grateful and thankful that she had enough love and mercy to tell me the Truth rather than stoking the fire to my already outrageous ego. More to the point, it empowered me to work harder so that I would not have to be in that position again. Thanks, Mom!

Loving Honestly

Friends, we have to drop our egos if we want a chance to know our Father in Heaven. This means listening to wise counsel, being brave enough to speak the Truth no matter the consequence, and being merciful when giving a hard word. We are called the Body of Christ, which means we’re in this together! If someone has broccoli in their teeth, tell them! If your brother is walking into a fire pit, shout to let him know. We’ve tricked ourselves into believing that honesty is mean. But I ask you this, what is meaner: telling someone their behavior is detrimental or letting them self-destruct in ignorance? It’s not nice to prolong someone’s suffering because you don’t want to be inconvenienced by speaking the truth. God blesses the merciful and friends, honesty– in the right context– is merciful. So let’s hold each other to righteous and just mercy so that we help each other when we stumble rather than become onlookers to the fallen.

Today’s Question

Are you practicing just mercy or are you just standing by watching?

Enjoy the reading

Jeremiah 25

1 This message for all the people of Judah came to Jeremiah from the LORD during the fourth year of Jehoiakim’s reign over Judah. This was the year when King Nebuchadnezzar of Babylon began his reign. 
2 Jeremiah the prophet said to all the people in Judah and Jerusalem, 
3 “For the past twenty-three years—from the thirteenth year of the reign of Josiah son of Amon, king of Judah, until now—the LORD has been giving me his messages. I have faithfully passed them on to you, but you have not listened. 
4 “Again and again the LORD has sent you his servants, the prophets, but you have not listened or even paid attention. 
5 Each time the message was this: ‘Turn from the evil road you are traveling and from the evil things you are doing. Only then will I let you live in this land that the LORD gave to you and your ancestors forever. 
6 Do not provoke my anger by worshiping idols you made with your own hands. Then I will not harm you.’ 
7 “But you would not listen to me,” says the LORD . “You made me furious by worshiping idols you made with your own hands, bringing on yourselves all the disasters you now suffer. 
8 And now the LORD of Heaven’s Armies says: Because you have not listened to me, 
9 I will gather together all the armies of the north under King Nebuchadnezzar of Babylon, whom I have appointed as my deputy. I will bring them all against this land and its people and against the surrounding nations. I will completely destroy you and make you an object of horror and contempt and a ruin forever. 
10 I will take away your happy singing and laughter. The joyful voices of bridegrooms and brides will no longer be heard. Your millstones will fall silent, and the lights in your homes will go out. 
11 This entire land will become a desolate wasteland. Israel and her neighboring lands will serve the king of Babylon for seventy years. 
12 “Then, after the seventy years of captivity are over, I will punish the king of Babylon and his people for their sins,” says the LORD . “I will make the country of the Babylonians a wasteland forever. 
13 I will bring upon them all the terrors I have promised in this book—all the penalties announced by Jeremiah against the nations. 
14 Many nations and great kings will enslave the Babylonians, just as they enslaved my people. I will punish them in proportion to the suffering they cause my people.” 
15 This is what the LORD, the God of Israel, said to me: “Take from my hand this cup filled to the brim with my anger, and make all the nations to whom I send you drink from it. 
16 When they drink from it, they will stagger, crazed by the warfare I will send against them.” 
17 So I took the cup of anger from the LORD and made all the nations drink from it—every nation to which the LORD sent me. 
18 I went to Jerusalem and the other towns of Judah, and their kings and officials drank from the cup. From that day until this, they have been a desolate ruin, an object of horror, contempt, and cursing. 
19 I gave the cup to Pharaoh, king of Egypt, his attendants, his officials, and all his people, 
20 along with all the foreigners living in that land. I also gave it to all the kings of the land of Uz and the kings of the Philistine cities of Ashkelon, Gaza, Ekron, and what remains of Ashdod. 
21 Then I gave the cup to the nations of Edom, Moab, and Ammon, 
22 and the kings of Tyre and Sidon, and the kings of the regions across the sea. 
23 I gave it to Dedan, Tema, and Buz, and to the people who live in distant places. 
24 I gave it to the kings of Arabia, the kings of the nomadic tribes of the desert, 
25 and to the kings of Zimri, Elam, and Media. 
26 And I gave it to the kings of the northern countries, far and near, one after the other—all the kingdoms of the world. And finally, the king of Babylon himself drank from the cup of the LORD ’s anger. 
27 Then the LORD said to me, “Now tell them, ‘This is what the LORD of Heaven’s Armies, the God of Israel, says: Drink from this cup of my anger. Get drunk and vomit; fall to rise no more, for I am sending terrible wars against you.’ 
28 And if they refuse to accept the cup, tell them, ‘The LORD of Heaven’s Armies says: You have no choice but to drink from it. 
29 I have begun to punish Jerusalem, the city that bears my name. Now should I let you go unpunished? No, you will not escape disaster. I will call for war against all the nations of the earth. I, the LORD of Heaven’s Armies, have spoken!’ 
30 “Now prophesy all these things, and say to them, “‘The LORD will roar against his own land from his holy dwelling in heaven. He will shout like those who tread grapes; he will shout against everyone on earth. 
31 His cry of judgment will reach the ends of the earth, for the LORD will bring his case against all the nations. He will judge all the people of the earth, slaughtering the wicked with the sword. I, the LORD, have spoken!’” 
32 This is what the LORD of Heaven’s Armies says: “Look! Disaster will fall upon nation after nation! A great whirlwind of fury is rising from the most distant corners of the earth!” 
33 In that day those the LORD has slaughtered will fill the earth from one end to the other. No one will mourn for them or gather up their bodies to bury them. They will be scattered on the ground like manure. 
34 Weep and moan, you evil shepherds! Roll in the dust, you leaders of the flock! The time of your slaughter has arrived; you will fall and shatter like a fragile vase. 
35 You will find no place to hide; there will be no way to escape. 
36 Listen to the frantic cries of the shepherds. The leaders of the flock are wailing in despair, for the LORD is ruining their pastures. 
37 Peaceful meadows will be turned into a wasteland by the LORD ’s fierce anger. 
38 He has left his den like a strong lion seeking its prey, and their land will be made desolate by the sword of the enemy and the LORD ’s fierce anger.

Feedback

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Hi Peeps,

Today’s Quote

“Hanging out with God is like getting honest and objective feedback from someone who ultimately has your best interest in mind. Listen well.”~TB

It Starts With

I’m a big believer in demystifying the practice of building a relationship with God. For some reason, people make it out to be some big ritualistic practice that only ‘certain’ people can do, when in reality, everyone can talk to God. More to the point, the more you talk and listen, you too can get His feedback on your life and what it means to truly be His. It starts with you asking to hear from Him. Literally, that’s it. If you have the honest and earnest desire to hear from God, then ask.

It’s Not Like

After observing people, I find that one of the biggest disconnects with building that relationship comes from not understanding who God is. We, humans, have a distorted belief that we are our own leaders, makers, etc. So if you’re trying to come to God to dictate to Him how your life should be, man, you’re going to continuously bump your head on a wall. Trust, I’m saying this from experience. My point in saying all this is, to know God is to understand that He is our Creator. This means He ultimately knows you better than you know yourself.

Learn From

When you do the work and build that connection with Christ, His feedback will radically change how you see the world. The fads, the trends, the need for approval from broken people disappear– if you allow it. Because the world jams up our Holy Frequency of which God communicates by, we must unlearn our worldly practices to synthesize the feedback from God. So to sum it up, come to Him with an honest heart. Be humble and learn to submit to His sovereignty. Listen and learn from what you hear. When you’re able to see the world for what it actually is, God’s feedback is easier to understand and implement.

Today’s Question

Who are you listening to, God or the world?

Enjoy the reading

Jeremiah 2

1 The LORD gave me another message. He said, 
2 “Go and shout this message to Jerusalem. This is what the LORD says: “I remember how eager you were to please me as a young bride long ago, how you loved me and followed me even through the barren wilderness. 
3 In those days Israel was holy to the LORD, the first of his children. All who harmed his people were declared guilty, and disaster fell on them. I, the LORD, have spoken!” 
4 Listen to the word of the LORD, people of Jacob—all you families of Israel! 
5 This is what the LORD says: “What did your ancestors find wrong with me that led them to stray so far from me? They worshiped worthless idols, only to become worthless themselves. 
6 They did not ask, ‘Where is the LORD who brought us safely out of Egypt and led us through the barren wilderness— a land of deserts and pits, a land of drought and death, where no one lives or even travels?’ 
7 “And when I brought you into a fruitful land to enjoy its bounty and goodness, you defiled my land and corrupted the possession I had promised you. 
8 The priests did not ask, ‘Where is the LORD ?’ Those who taught my word ignored me, the rulers turned against me, and the prophets spoke in the name of Baal, wasting their time on worthless idols. 
9 Therefore, I will bring my case against you,” says the LORD . “I will even bring charges against your children’s children in the years to come. 
10 “Go west and look in the land of Cyprus ; go east and search through the land of Kedar. Has anyone ever heard of anything as strange as this? 
11 Has any nation ever traded its gods for new ones, even though they are not gods at all? Yet my people have exchanged their glorious God for worthless idols! 
12 The heavens are shocked at such a thing and shrink back in horror and dismay,” says the LORD . 
13 “For my people have done two evil things: They have abandoned me— the fountain of living water. And they have dug for themselves cracked cisterns that can hold no water at all! 
14 “Why has Israel become a slave? Why has he been carried away as plunder? 
15 Strong lions have roared against him, and the land has been destroyed. The towns are now in ruins, and no one lives in them anymore. 
16 Egyptians, marching from their cities of Memphis and Tahpanhes, have destroyed Israel’s glory and power. 
17 And you have brought this upon yourselves by rebelling against the LORD your God, even though he was leading you on the way! 
18 “What have you gained by your alliances with Egypt and your covenants with Assyria? What good to you are the streams of the Nile or the waters of the Euphrates River? 
19 Your wickedness will bring its own punishment. Your turning from me will shame you. You will see what an evil, bitter thing it is to abandon the LORD your God and not to fear him. I, the Lord, the LORD of Heaven’s Armies, have spoken! 
20 “Long ago I broke the yoke that oppressed you and tore away the chains of your slavery, but still you said, ‘I will not serve you.’ On every hill and under every green tree, you have prostituted yourselves by bowing down to idols. 
21 But I was the one who planted you, choosing a vine of the purest stock—the very best. How did you grow into this corrupt wild vine? 
22 No amount of soap or lye can make you clean. I still see the stain of your guilt. I, the Sovereign LORD, have spoken! 
23 “You say, ‘That’s not true! I haven’t worshiped the images of Baal!’ But how can you say that? Go and look in any valley in the land! Face the awful sins you have done. You are like a restless female camel desperately searching for a mate. 
24 You are like a wild donkey, sniffing the wind at mating time. Who can restrain her lust? Those who desire her don’t need to search, for she goes running to them! 
25 When will you stop running? When will you stop panting after other gods? But you say, ‘Save your breath. I’m in love with these foreign gods, and I can’t stop loving them now!’ 
26 “Israel is like a thief who feels shame only when he gets caught. They, their kings, officials, priests, and prophets— all are alike in this. 
27 To an image carved from a piece of wood they say, ‘You are my father.’ To an idol chiseled from a block of stone they say, ‘You are my mother.’ They turn their backs on me, but in times of trouble they cry out to me, ‘Come and save us!’ 
28 But why not call on these gods you have made? When trouble comes, let them save you if they can! For you have as many gods as there are towns in Judah. 
29 Why do you accuse me of doing wrong? You are the ones who have rebelled,” says the LORD . 
30 “I have punished your children, but they did not respond to my discipline. You yourselves have killed your prophets as a lion kills its prey. 
31 “O my people, listen to the words of the LORD ! Have I been like a desert to Israel? Have I been to them a land of darkness? Why then do my people say, ‘At last we are free from God! We don’t need him anymore!’ 
32 Does a young woman forget her jewelry, or a bride her wedding dress? Yet for years on end my people have forgotten me. 
33 “How you plot and scheme to win your lovers. Even an experienced prostitute could learn from you! 
34 Your clothing is stained with the blood of the innocent and the poor, though you didn’t catch them breaking into your houses! 
35 And yet you say, ‘I have done nothing wrong. Surely God isn’t angry with me!’ But now I will punish you severely because you claim you have not sinned. 
36 First here, then there— you flit from one ally to another asking for help. But your new friends in Egypt will let you down, just as Assyria did before. 
37 In despair, you will be led into exile with your hands on your heads, for the LORD has rejected the nations you trust. They will not help you at all.

Trapped

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Hi Peeps,
Today’s Quote
“We become trapped into our own laziness of lying, cheating, stealing, and wasting time because we hate doing what is right in the sight of God.”  ~  Jon Barnes

Tips

Many of us want to tiptoe through our problems and fears by saying we hate reading, working with people, doing something new, following directions, cleaning, exercising, eating right, and the list goes on and on and on.  Verbalizing our excuses only helps us to mask and hide our solutions to execute better habits and behaviors.  We refuse to change into what God wants for us.  Stop following the crowd!

Taps

Tap into your help by listening to God and humbling yourself.  When God blesses us, we tend to get prideful, nonresponsive, and lazy, as if we have arrived to enter into the “Gates of Heaven”.  Then, our pride turns into spiritual gangrene that sets in to stop us from walking into our destiny.  Being unprepared, lazy, and not finishing our jobs are clear signs of disorganization, neglect, dirtiness, and overweight attitudes of prideful time mismanagement, which leads to an obese lifestyle of overindulging.   

Tops

Stay on top of your game by staying honest to your mission, working through your little problems, and mastering the lifestyle God wants you to live.  The closer you get to God’s standards, the more disciplined you become, full of love, patience, and kindness, with clear clean words, work, and faith.  
Today’s Question
Did you go to the gym with God this morning or are you trapped under your pride and laziness?
Enjoy The Reading
 

Psalm 36 

For the choir director: A psalm of David, the servant of the Lord.

Sin whispers to the wicked, deep within their hearts.[a]
    They have no fear of God at all.
In their blind conceit,
    they cannot see how wicked they really are.
Everything they say is crooked and deceitful.
    They refuse to act wisely or do good.
They lie awake at night, hatching sinful plots.
    Their actions are never good.
    They make no attempt to turn from evil.
Your unfailing love, O Lord, is as vast as the heavens;
    your faithfulness reaches beyond the clouds.
Your righteousness is like the mighty mountains,
    your justice like the ocean depths.
You care for people and animals alike, O Lord.
    How precious is your unfailing love, O God!
All humanity finds shelter
    in the shadow of your wings.
You feed them from the abundance of your own house,
    letting them drink from your river of delights.
For you are the fountain of life,
    the light by which we see.
10 Pour out your unfailing love on those who love you;
    give justice to those with honest hearts.
11 Don’t let the proud trample me
    or the wicked push me around.
12 Look! Those who do evil have fallen!
    They are thrown down, never to rise again.

Love,

Jonathan

Prove

sherlock-holmes-462978_1920.jpgHi Peeps,
Today’s Quote
“Stop trying to prove that you are right and just do the work of a righteous person because the proof is in your actions and not your vain words and explanations.”  ~ Jon Barnes

Talkative

People who waste time talking about the work that they need to do with the people they should avoid, typically do little work and continue to do the wrong things with the wrong crowd. Spend more time listening, learning, and growing with the people who are relevant in your life, especially God. 

Quiet

People who are focused and quiet tend to stay busy getting the work done with little help or support.  The proof is in the work of a self-starter, not the talker.  The go-getter gets the proof from within and they can see the steps, as God guides His children.  The slackers take, talk, steal, and pretend that they are doing the work.  Quietly ask God for help and He will give it to you. Accept the help.

Proof

When you reject God’s help, methods, and suggestion, you have obtained the proof of your ignorance, stubbornness, and stupidity of arrogance.  When calamity continues in your life, there is yet more proof of your folly.  Go back to the closet with God, humble yourself, repent, pray, and look for the truth in love.  Things will change for the better when you change your ways.
Today’s Question
If you interested in the truth, where is your proof?
Enjoy The reading
 

Psalm 2 

Psalm 2

Why are the nations so angry?
    Why do they waste their time with futile plans?
The kings of the earth prepare for battle;
    the rulers plot together
against the Lord
    and against his anointed one.
“Let us break their chains,” they cry,
    “and free ourselves from slavery to God.”
But the one who rules in heaven laughs.
    The Lord scoffs at them.
Then in anger he rebukes them,
    terrifying them with his fierce fury.
For the Lord declares, “I have placed my chosen king on the throne
    in Jerusalem,[a] on my holy mountain.”
The king proclaims the Lord’s decree:
“The Lord said to me, ‘You are my son.[b]
    Today I have become your Father.[c]
Only ask, and I will give you the nations as your inheritance,
    the whole earth as your possession.
You will break[d] them with an iron rod
    and smash them like clay pots.’”
10 Now then, you kings, act wisely!
    Be warned, you rulers of the earth!
11 Serve the Lord with reverent fear,
    and rejoice with trembling.
12 Submit to God’s royal son,[e] or he will become angry,
    and you will be destroyed in the midst of all your activities—
for his anger flares up in an instant.
    But what joy for all who take refuge in him!

Love,

Jonathan

Wooden Cross

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Hi Peeps,
Today’s Quote
“I wear a wooden cross given to me by two Russian Missionaries, working and preaching at a local church in New Mexico, because it is a symbol of the good work that I’m doing with Music in Education around the world.”  ~  Jon Barnes

Black

Since I wear black clothes with a cross around my neck, people assume that I am a missionary, minister, or priest. However, I’m just a good guy who loves to read the bible as much as possible, which is my reply.  Good people having fun should be talked about more often.

Man

As a minority, I am surrounded by New Mexicans, Spanish, and Indian cultures and I teach almost 700 of their children how to play the trumpet each week.  The music is used to build confidence, fine motor skills, problems solving, math, language, and they read my book in class.  Students respond to great information in all the same ways.

Mission

Since I hold influence, students are paying close attention to what I say and do.  My moral compass is under a microscope in every way to give an example of an honest lifestyle of character for God.  I have a lot to learn, as people are always watching you.
Today’s Question
As a humbled person, have you picked up your wooden cross to follow Jesus to inspire others to read and live by Biblical ethics?
Enjoy The Reading

Esther 10 

The Greatness of Mordecai

10 King Xerxes imposed tribute throughout the empire, to its distant shores.And all his acts of power and might, together with a full account of the greatness of Mordecai, whom the king had promoted, are they not written in the book of the annals of the kings of Media and Persia? Mordecai the Jew was second in rankto King Xerxes, preeminent among the Jews, and held in high esteem by his many fellow Jews, because he worked for the good of his people and spoke up for the welfare of all the Jews.
Love,
Jonathan

Humbled

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Hi Peeps,
Today’s Quote
“Remaining humbled and faithful when God blesses you is a test of obedience in which many us will fail because our will is more important that God’s Will and Commandments.” ~ Jon Barnes 

Trophy

Our prayer life and praises unto God are not trophies to be displayed before people just to be seen. Yet God would rather you pray and work like children of God from your secret closet. Our humbled secret works of faith, prayer, and praise are rewarded by God openly in how you live openly every day. The humility of your actions shines like the sun and your trumpet doesn’t need to blast before you enter the room, like a trophy.

Blast

Sometimes God will use a trumpet blast to get our attention, destroy walls, make a point, or handle issues, but in general, God doesn’t need our help to blast anything.  It is us who need God. Master the ability and humility of following God’s directions, not the hype of traditions of men. Blast your way into God’s hands and not into the ways of man.

Outcast

You may seem like an outcast by following God’s agenda and not your own.  When things don’t work out from your perspective, it is God’s plan that directs you to the flow of where you will go.  Be open to change directions because God is steering the boat.  Don’t allow your pride to take over the captain’s seat, which dishonors your parents and God.  Stay humble and relevant.
Today’s Question.
Are you relevant to God in humility, faith, love, forgiveness, work, prayer, and truth?
Enjoy The Reading

2 Samuel 3 

That was the beginning of a long war between those who were loyal to Saul and those loyal to David. As time passed David became stronger and stronger, while Saul’s dynasty became weaker and weaker.

David’s Sons Born in Hebron

These are the sons who were born to David in Hebron:
The oldest was Amnon, whose mother was Ahinoam from Jezreel.
The second was Daniel,[a] whose mother was Abigail, the widow of Nabal from Carmel.
The third was Absalom, whose mother was Maacah, the daughter of Talmai, king of Geshur.
The fourth was Adonijah, whose mother was Haggith.
The fifth was Shephatiah, whose mother was Abital.
The sixth was Ithream, whose mother was Eglah, David’s wife.
These sons were all born to David in Hebron.

Abner Joins Forces with David

As the war between the house of Saul and the house of David went on, Abner became a powerful leader among those loyal to Saul. One day Ishbosheth,[b]Saul’s son, accused Abner of sleeping with one of his father’s concubines, a woman named Rizpah, daughter of Aiah.
Abner was furious. “Am I some Judean dog to be kicked around like this?” he shouted. “After all I have done for your father, Saul, and his family and friends by not handing you over to David, is this my reward—that you find fault with me about this woman? May God strike me and even kill me if I don’t do everything I can to help David get what the Lord has promised him! 10 I’m going to take Saul’s kingdom and give it to David. I will establish the throne of David over Israel as well as Judah, all the way from Dan in the north to Beersheba in the south.”11 Ishbosheth didn’t dare say another word because he was afraid of what Abner might do.
12 Then Abner sent messengers to David, saying, “Doesn’t the entire land belong to you? Make a solemn pact with me, and I will help turn over all of Israel to you.”
13 “All right,” David replied, “but I will not negotiate with you unless you bring back my wife Michal, Saul’s daughter, when you come.”
14 David then sent this message to Ishbosheth, Saul’s son: “Give me back my wife Michal, for I bought her with the lives[c] of 100 Philistines.”
15 So Ishbosheth took Michal away from her husband, Palti[d] son of Laish. 16 Palti followed along behind her as far as Bahurim, weeping as he went. Then Abner told him, “Go back home!” So Palti returned.
17 Meanwhile, Abner had consulted with the elders of Israel. “For some time now,” he told them, “you have wanted to make David your king. 18 Now is the time! For the Lord has said, ‘I have chosen David to save my people Israel from the hands of the Philistines and from all their other enemies.’” 19 Abner also spoke with the men of Benjamin. Then he went to Hebron to tell David that all the people of Israel and Benjamin had agreed to support him.
20 When Abner and twenty of his men came to Hebron, David entertained them with a great feast. 21 Then Abner said to David, “Let me go and call an assembly of all Israel to support my lord the king. They will make a covenant with you to make you their king, and you will rule over everything your heart desires.” So David sent Abner safely on his way.

Joab Murders Abner

22 But just after David had sent Abner away in safety, Joab and some of David’s troops returned from a raid, bringing much plunder with them. 23 When Joab arrived, he was told that Abner had just been there visiting the king and had been sent away in safety.
24 Joab rushed to the king and demanded, “What have you done? What do you mean by letting Abner get away? 25 You know perfectly well that he came to spy on you and find out everything you’re doing!”
26 Joab then left David and sent messengers to catch up with Abner, asking him to return. They found him at the well of Sirah and brought him back, though David knew nothing about it. 27 When Abner arrived back at Hebron, Joab took him aside at the gateway as if to speak with him privately. But then he stabbed Abner in the stomach and killed him in revenge for killing his brother Asahel.
28 When David heard about it, he declared, “I vow by the Lord that I and my kingdom are forever innocent of this crime against Abner son of Ner. 29 Joab and his family are the guilty ones. May the family of Joab be cursed in every generation with a man who has open sores or leprosy[e] or who walks on crutches[f] or dies by the sword or begs for food!”
30 So Joab and his brother Abishai killed Abner because Abner had killed their brother Asahel at the battle of Gibeon.

David Mourns Abner’s Death

31 Then David said to Joab and all those who were with him, “Tear your clothes and put on burlap. Mourn for Abner.” And King David himself walked behind the procession to the grave. 32 They buried Abner in Hebron, and the king and all the people wept at his graveside. 33 Then the king sang this funeral song for Abner:
“Should Abner have died as fools die?
34 Your hands were not bound;
    your feet were not chained.
No, you were murdered—
    the victim of a wicked plot.”
All the people wept again for Abner. 35 David had refused to eat anything on the day of the funeral, and now everyone begged him to eat. But David had made a vow, saying, “May God strike me and even kill me if I eat anything before sundown.”
36 This pleased the people very much. In fact, everything the king did pleased them! 37 So everyone in Judah and all Israel understood that David was not responsible for Abner’s murder.
38 Then King David said to his officials, “Don’t you realize that a great commander has fallen today in Israel? 39 And even though I am the anointed king, these two sons of Zeruiah—Joab and Abishai—are too strong for me to control. So may the Lord repay these evil men for their evil deeds.”
Love,
Jonathan

Wholeheartedly

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Hi Peeps,
Today’s Quote
“People who don’t commit their whole heart to God, will not love Him at all, since their wickedness will overtake their personal thoughts and actions, which contradicts God’s lifestyle, Works, Ethics, and Word.” ~ Jon Barnes

Wait

People spend a lot of mindless energy and time that is wasted on not doing the work and waiting for God to do the reading, studying, fasting, and praying in life, which include selecting, buying, and moving into their dwelling places. Buy your own house, stop waiting, wasting money, and complaining about your circumstances. Change your lazy behavior and do what is required each day and you will have enough to do what God has promised you.

Applied

Apply yourself and you will see the wonderful results that hard working people can achieve. If you are a flake on the job or at home, your work ethics will draw an accurate self-portrait of you.  I hope you like what you see. You can tell when people do not do their homework and they are unprepared for the next level to move forward.  By willfully giving up your choice to finish your chores, assignments, reading, studying, cleaning, maintenance, and instructions, your application for moving forward with God will be denied.

Apprentice 

We all learn from the Father God, who teaches parents how to live, love, and instruct their children. But, it is up to you to listen to the apprenticeship and respect the chain of command God has set in place.  When you disrespect the chain of command and your parents, you disrespect God! Keep your mind humble in the mode of learning, quick to listen, hear, and obey the commandments of God, so that you are able to discern the truth in all situations.
Today’s Question
Did you move your feelings out of the way so that you can see, hear, and do the truth in the lessons from God or is your room at home a mess?
Enjoy The Reading

Joshua 22 

Eastern Tribes Return Home

22 Then Joshua summoned the Reubenites, the Gadites and the half-tribe of Manasseh and said to them, “You have done all that Moses the servant of the Lord commanded, and you have obeyed me in everything I commanded. For a long time now—to this very day—you have not deserted your fellow Israelites but have carried out the mission the Lord your God gave you. Now that the Lord your God has given them rest as he promised, return to your homes in the land that Moses the servant of the Lord gave you on the other side of the Jordan. But be very careful to keep the commandment and the law that Moses the servant of the Lord gave you: to love the Lord your God, to walk in obedience to him, to keep his commands, to hold fast to him and to serve him with all your heart and with all your soul.”
Then Joshua blessed them and sent them away, and they went to their homes.(To the half-tribe of Manasseh Moses had given land in Bashan, and to the other half of the tribe Joshua gave land on the west side of the Jordan along with their fellow Israelites.) When Joshua sent them home, he blessed them, saying, “Return to your homes with your great wealth—with large herds of livestock, with silver, gold, bronze and iron, and a great quantity of clothing—and divide the plunder from your enemies with your fellow Israelites.”
So the Reubenites, the Gadites and the half-tribe of Manasseh left the Israelites at Shiloh in Canaan to return to Gilead, their own land, which they had acquired in accordance with the command of the Lord through Moses.
10 When they came to Geliloth near the Jordan in the land of Canaan, the Reubenites, the Gadites and the half-tribe of Manasseh built an imposing altarthere by the Jordan. 11 And when the Israelites heard that they had built the altar on the border of Canaan at Geliloth near the Jordan on the Israelite side, 12 the whole assembly of Israel gathered at Shiloh to go to war against them.
13 So the Israelites sent Phinehas son of Eleazar, the priest, to the land of Gilead—to Reuben, Gad and the half-tribe of Manasseh. 14 With him they sent ten of the chief men, one from each of the tribes of Israel, each the head of a family division among the Israelite clans.
15 When they went to Gilead—to Reuben, Gad and the half-tribe of Manasseh—they said to them: 16 “The whole assembly of the Lord says: ‘How could you break faith with the God of Israel like this? How could you turn away from the Lord and build yourselves an altar in rebellion against him now? 17 Was not the sin of Peorenough for us? Up to this very day we have not cleansed ourselves from that sin, even though a plague fell on the community of the Lord! 18 And are you now turning away from the Lord?
“‘If you rebel against the Lord today, tomorrow he will be angry with the whole community of Israel. 19 If the land you possess is defiled, come over to the Lord’s land, where the Lord’s tabernacle stands, and share the land with us. But do not rebel against the Lord or against us by building an altar for yourselves, other than the altar of the Lord our God. 20 When Achan son of Zerah was unfaithful in regard to the devoted things,[a] did not wrath come on the whole community of Israel? He was not the only one who died for his sin.’”
21 Then Reuben, Gad and the half-tribe of Manasseh replied to the heads of the clans of Israel: 22 “The Mighty One, God, the Lord! The Mighty One, God, the Lord!He knows! And let Israel know! If this has been in rebellion or disobedience to the Lord, do not spare us this day. 23 If we have built our own altar to turn away from the Lord and to offer burnt offerings and grain offerings, or to sacrifice fellowship offerings on it, may the Lord himself call us to account.
24 “No! We did it for fear that some day your descendants might say to ours, ‘What do you have to do with the Lord, the God of Israel? 25 The Lord has made the Jordan a boundary between us and you—you Reubenites and Gadites! You have no share in the Lord.’ So your descendants might cause ours to stop fearing the Lord.
26 “That is why we said, ‘Let us get ready and build an altar—but not for burnt offerings or sacrifices.’ 27 On the contrary, it is to be a witness between us and you and the generations that follow, that we will worship the Lord at his sanctuary with our burnt offerings, sacrifices and fellowship offerings. Then in the future your descendants will not be able to say to ours, ‘You have no share in the Lord.’
28 “And we said, ‘If they ever say this to us, or to our descendants, we will answer: Look at the replica of the Lord’s altar, which our ancestors built, not for burnt offerings and sacrifices, but as a witness between us and you.’
29 “Far be it from us to rebel against the Lord and turn away from him today by building an altar for burnt offerings, grain offerings and sacrifices, other than the altar of the Lord our God that stands before his tabernacle.”
30 When Phinehas the priest and the leaders of the community—the heads of the clans of the Israelites—heard what Reuben, Gad and Manasseh had to say, they were pleased. 31 And Phinehas son of Eleazar, the priest, said to Reuben, Gad and Manasseh, “Today we know that the Lord is with us, because you have not been unfaithful to the Lord in this matter. Now you have rescued the Israelites from the Lord’s hand.”
32 Then Phinehas son of Eleazar, the priest, and the leaders returned to Canaan from their meeting with the Reubenites and Gadites in Gilead and reported to the Israelites. 33 They were glad to hear the report and praised God. And they talked no more about going to war against them to devastate the country where the Reubenites and the Gadites lived.
34 And the Reubenites and the Gadites gave the altar this name: A WitnessBetween Us—that the Lord is God.
Love,
Jonathan