“Don’t be fooled by the guise of self-reliance because only God can allow our seeds to grow.”~TB
In the eyes of man, we applaud the idea that we can achieve anything based on our own merit. With our two hands, grit, and determination, we have everything we need. To the world, success happens by yourself on your own accord. Friends, while we have to play an active role in our lives, the belief that we don’t need anyone or anything is a fallacy. It conveniently leaves out our Maker and how His hand dictates the events that play out in our lives.
When you know who actually runs the show, you recognize how needy and dependent you actually are. In life, we need Christ to show us the way, to approve of our plans so that we build our lives on the firm foundation of God. Being and believing that you are indeed God-Made allows you to receive His instructions. It also encourages you to engage with the Body of Christ– the people around you– as you know it takes a village to succeed. So rather than relying on your flesh, rely on the One who first called you His so you can truly see what you are made of.
When the time comes to give your account, who do you want to vouch for you; yourself or Christ?
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1The LORD gave another message to Jeremiah. He said,
2“Go to the entrance of the LORD ’s Temple, and give this message to the people: ‘O Judah, listen to this message from the LORD ! Listen to it, all of you who worship here!
3This is what the LORD of Heaven’s Armies, the God of Israel, says: “‘Even now, if you quit your evil ways, I will let you stay in your own land.
4But don’t be fooled by those who promise you safety simply because the LORD ’s Temple is here. They chant, “The LORD ’s Temple is here! The LORD ’s Temple is here!”
5But I will be merciful only if you stop your evil thoughts and deeds and start treating each other with justice;
6only if you stop exploiting foreigners, orphans, and widows; only if you stop your murdering; and only if you stop harming yourselves by worshiping idols.
7Then I will let you stay in this land that I gave to your ancestors to keep forever.
8“‘Don’t be fooled into thinking that you will never suffer because the Temple is here. It’s a lie!
9Do you really think you can steal, murder, commit adultery, lie, and burn incense to Baal and all those other new gods of yours,
10and then come here and stand before me in my Temple and chant, “We are safe!”—only to go right back to all those evils again?
11Don’t you yourselves admit that this Temple, which bears my name, has become a den of thieves? Surely I see all the evil going on there. I, the LORD, have spoken!
12“‘Go now to the place at Shiloh where I once put the Tabernacle that bore my name. See what I did there because of all the wickedness of my people, the Israelites.
13While you were doing these wicked things, says the LORD, I spoke to you about it repeatedly, but you would not listen. I called out to you, but you refused to answer.
14So just as I destroyed Shiloh, I will now destroy this Temple that bears my name, this Temple that you trust in for help, this place that I gave to you and your ancestors.
15And I will send you out of my sight into exile, just as I did your relatives, the people of Israel. ’
16“Pray no more for these people, Jeremiah. Do not weep or pray for them, and don’t beg me to help them, for I will not listen to you.
17Don’t you see what they are doing throughout the towns of Judah and in the streets of Jerusalem?
18No wonder I am so angry! Watch how the children gather wood and the fathers build sacrificial fires. See how the women knead dough and make cakes to offer to the Queen of Heaven. And they pour out liquid offerings to their other idol gods!
19Am I the one they are hurting?” asks the LORD . “Most of all, they hurt themselves, to their own shame.”
20So this is what the Sovereign LORD says: “I will pour out my terrible fury on this place. Its people, animals, trees, and crops will be consumed by the unquenchable fire of my anger.”
21This is what the LORD of Heaven’s Armies, the God of Israel, says: “Take your burnt offerings and your other sacrifices and eat them yourselves!
22When I led your ancestors out of Egypt, it was not burnt offerings and sacrifices I wanted from them.
23This is what I told them: ‘Obey me, and I will be your God, and you will be my people. Do everything as I say, and all will be well!’
24“But my people would not listen to me. They kept doing whatever they wanted, following the stubborn desires of their evil hearts. They went backward instead of forward.
25From the day your ancestors left Egypt until now, I have continued to send my servants, the prophets—day in and day out.
26But my people have not listened to me or even tried to hear. They have been stubborn and sinful—even worse than their ancestors.
27“Tell them all this, but do not expect them to listen. Shout out your warnings, but do not expect them to respond.
28Say to them, ‘This is the nation whose people will not obey the LORD their God and who refuse to be taught. Truth has vanished from among them; it is no longer heard on their lips.
29Shave your head in mourning, and weep alone on the mountains. For the LORD has rejected and forsaken this generation that has provoked his fury.’
30“The people of Judah have sinned before my very eyes,” says the LORD . “They have set up their abominable idols right in the Temple that bears my name, defiling it.
31They have built pagan shrines at Topheth, the garbage dump in the valley of Ben-Hinnom, and there they burn their sons and daughters in the fire. I have never commanded such a horrible deed; it never even crossed my mind to command such a thing!
32So beware, for the time is coming,” says the LORD, “when that garbage dump will no longer be called Topheth or the valley of Ben-Hinnom, but the Valley of Slaughter. They will bury the bodies in Topheth until there is no more room for them.
33The bodies of my people will be food for the vultures and wild animals, and no one will be left to scare them away.
34I will put an end to the happy singing and laughter in the streets of Jerusalem. The joyful voices of bridegrooms and brides will no longer be heard in the towns of Judah. The land will lie in complete desolation.
“Be confident about how people perceive and know who you are, what you are doing, and how you serve God because they can tell if you are a fraud when they test you.” ~ Jon Barnes
Become successful at loving God and you will be spiritually and naturally rich and not an evil fraud. Money does not measure your richness with God because it is like dirt to Him. The streets of Heaven are paved with treasures unseen. Your family and the people around you will admire your faith, work ethic, and talent that God has blessed you with. People will become jealous and they will try to treat you badly for doing a good job. Count it all as Joy.
There is no need to brag about your accomplishments with serving God because it is obvious. The simplicity of obedience means the most to God and it is the foundation of your faith in Jesus. Pray that you stay connected and humble in the Love of God, with your faith, actions, words, work, and service to others. Quality Love builds confidence that you can naturally be proud of and feel good about, just like a Dad who takes good care of his kids and family. The truth always rises to the top of who you are in Christ.
I get this jolly feeling of joy when I see my children obey God’s commandments, talk about bible stories, and improve their lives. It is more joyful to see this happen with my grandchildren as well. Continue to share and reflect on these things to enjoy the lifestyle God has blessed you with. Teach the next generation by example, daily practice, and discussions with gladness and success. This way of life should be natural, unforced, and encouraged for generational transfer of wisdom, love, and understanding with good common sense, family values, ethics, morals, and discipline.
Are you happy about working for God and going to Heaven or would you rather go to hell by worshiping something else?
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Jesus, the True Vine
15 “I am the true grapevine, and my Father is the gardener. 2 He cuts off every branch of mine that doesn’t produce fruit, and he prunes the branches that do bear fruit so they will produce even more.3 You have already been pruned and purified by the message I have given you.4 Remain in me, and I will remain in you. For a branch cannot produce fruit if it is severed from the vine, and you cannot be fruitful unless you remain in me.
5 “Yes, I am the vine; you are the branches. Those who remain in me, and I in them, will produce much fruit. For apart from me you can do nothing.6 Anyone who does not remain in me is thrown away like a useless branch and withers. Such branches are gathered into a pile to be burned.7 But if you remain in me and my words remain in you, you may ask for anything you want, and it will be granted!8 When you produce much fruit, you are my true disciples. This brings great glory to my Father.
9 “I have loved you even as the Father has loved me. Remain in my love.10 When you obey my commandments, you remain in my love, just as I obey my Father’s commandments and remain in his love.11 I have told you these things so that you will be filled with my joy. Yes, your joy will overflow!12 This is my commandment: Love each other in the same way I have loved you.13 There is no greater love than to lay down one’s life for one’s friends.14 You are my friends if you do what I command.15 I no longer call you slaves, because a master doesn’t confide in his slaves. Now you are my friends, since I have told you everything the Father told me.16 You didn’t choose me. I chose you. I appointed you to go and produce lasting fruit, so that the Father will give you whatever you ask for, using my name.17 This is my command: Love each other.
The World’s Hatred
18 “If the world hates you, remember that it hated me first. 19 The world would love you as one of its own if you belonged to it, but you are no longer part of the world. I chose you to come out of the world, so it hates you.20 Do you remember what I told you? ‘A slave is not greater than the master.’ Since they persecuted me, naturally they will persecute you. And if they had listened to me, they would listen to you.21 They will do all this to you because of me, for they have rejected the one who sent me.22 They would not be guilty if I had not come and spoken to them. But now they have no excuse for their sin.23 Anyone who hates me also hates my Father.24 If I hadn’t done such miraculous signs among them that no one else could do, they would not be guilty. But as it is, they have seen everything I did, yet they still hate me and my Father.25 This fulfills what is written in their Scriptures: ‘They hated me without cause.’
26 “But I will send you the Advocate—the Spirit of truth. He will come to you from the Father and will testify all about me.27 And you must also testify about me because you have been with me from the beginning of my ministry.
“The pains we can get from doing our best work can be overwhelming, but in the end, the grief of it all will turn into maximized longterm relief and true success with God, people, and your destiny.” ~ Jon Barnes
Align your ambitions with God’s Will and maximize all of the good you will do for the Kingdom of God. Each small step taken will teach you how to take better care of your family first. A person who does not love their family or take good care of them is worse than an infidel; Specifically, men who do not take care or provide for their own children. Friends become ambitious about taking care of your own kids, family, and God will teach you how to become a good friend to others also.
You cannot be fair to others if you are not fair to God and your own family. Practice what you preach by following His instructions, lifestyle commandments, and love guidelines. Too often we are all trying to move and learn everything way too fast, with shortcuts that diminish the natural learning experiences that we all need. There is no fairness in enslaving others to do your work, while you reap all of the rewards and benefits by spreading lies, grief, and mayhem.
People who are thoughtful with the love of God will pay and reward people properly for quality work and honest opportunity to survive and thrive. They will develop housing, land, jobs, food, education, and the likes for the good of all. There are enough provisions for all people to succeed, without greed! However, if our governments, we the people, and our businesses become full of corruption, then the laws and practices will reflect the welfare status of the city, country, or state.
Are you happy with all of the poverty that surrounds your wonderful business, property, and city or will you help to develop plans, goals, and opportunities for people to help themselves to do better with God’s Ethics?
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Jesus Feeds Five Thousand
6 After this, Jesus crossed over to the far side of the Sea of Galilee, also known as the Sea of Tiberias. 2 A huge crowd kept following him wherever he went, because they saw his miraculous signs as he healed the sick.3 Then Jesus climbed a hill and sat down with his disciples around him.4 (It was nearly time for the Jewish Passover celebration.)5 Jesus soon saw a huge crowd of people coming to look for him. Turning to Philip, he asked, “Where can we buy bread to feed all these people?”6 He was testing Philip, for he already knew what he was going to do.
7 Philip replied, “Even if we worked for months, we wouldn’t have enough money to feed them!”
8 Then Andrew, Simon Peter’s brother, spoke up.9 “There’s a young boy here with five barley loaves and two fish. But what good is that with this huge crowd?”
10 “Tell everyone to sit down,” Jesus said. So they all sat down on the grassy slopes. (The men alone numbered about 5,000.)11 Then Jesus took the loaves, gave thanks to God, and distributed them to the people. Afterward he did the same with the fish. And they all ate as much as they wanted.12 After everyone was full, Jesus told his disciples, “Now gather the leftovers, so that nothing is wasted.”13 So they picked up the pieces and filled twelve baskets with scraps left by the people who had eaten from the five barley loaves.
14 When the people saw him do this miraculous sign, they exclaimed, “Surely, he is the Prophet we have been expecting!”15 When Jesus saw that they were ready to force him to be their king, he slipped away into the hills by himself.
Jesus Walks on Water
16 That evening Jesus’ disciples went down to the shore to wait for him. 17 But as darkness fell and Jesus still hadn’t come back, they got into the boat and headed across the lake toward Capernaum.18 Soon a gale swept down upon them, and the sea grew very rough.19 They had rowed three or four miles when suddenly they saw Jesus walking on the water toward the boat. They were terrified,20 but he called out to them, “Don’t be afraid. I am here!”21 Then they were eager to let him in the boat, and immediately they arrived at their destination!
Jesus, the Bread of Life
22 The next day the crowd that had stayed on the far shore saw that the disciples had taken the only boat, and they realized Jesus had not gone with them. 23 Several boats from Tiberias landed near the place where the Lord had blessed the bread and the people had eaten.24 So when the crowd saw that neither Jesus nor his disciples were there, they got into the boats and went across to Capernaum to look for him.25 They found him on the other side of the lake and asked, “Rabbi, when did you get here?”
26 Jesus replied, “I tell you the truth, you want to be with me because I fed you, not because you understood the miraculous signs.27 But don’t be so concerned about perishable things like food. Spend your energy seeking the eternal life that the Son of Man can give you. For God the Father has given me the seal of his approval.”
28 They replied, “We want to perform God’s works, too. What should we do?”
29 Jesus told them, “This is the only work God wants from you: Believe in the one he has sent.”
30 They answered, “Show us a miraculous sign if you want us to believe in you. What can you do?31 After all, our ancestors ate manna while they journeyed through the wilderness! The Scriptures say, ‘Moses gave them bread from heaven to eat’. ”
32 Jesus said, “I tell you the truth, Moses didn’t give you bread from heaven. My Father did. And now he offers you the true bread from heaven.33 The true bread of God is the one who comes down from heaven and gives life to the world.”
34 “Sir,” they said, “give us that bread every day.”
35 Jesus replied, “I am the bread of life. Whoever comes to me will never be hungry again. Whoever believes in me will never be thirsty.36 But you haven’t believed in me even though you have seen me.37 However, those the Father has given me will come to me, and I will never reject them.38 For I have come down from heaven to do the will of God who sent me, not to do my own will.39 And this is the will of God, that I should not lose even one of all those he has given me, but that I should raise them up at the last day.40 For it is my Father’s will that all who see his Son and believe in him should have eternal life. I will raise them up at the last day.”
41 Then the people began to murmur in disagreement because he had said, “I am the bread that came down from heaven.”42 They said, “Isn’t this Jesus, the son of Joseph? We know his father and mother. How can he say, ‘I came down from heaven’?”
43 But Jesus replied, “Stop complaining about what I said.44 For no one can come to me unless the Father who sent me draws them to me, and at the last day I will raise them up.45 As it is written in the Scriptures, ‘They will all be taught by God.’ Everyone who listens to the Father and learns from him comes to me.46 (Not that anyone has ever seen the Father; only I, who was sent from God, have seen him.)
47 “I tell you the truth, anyone who believes has eternal life.48 Yes, I am the bread of life!49 Your ancestors ate manna in the wilderness, but they all died.50 Anyone who eats the bread from heaven, however, will never die.51 I am the living bread that came down from heaven. Anyone who eats this bread will live forever; and this bread, which I will offer so the world may live, is my flesh.”
52 Then the people began arguing with each other about what he meant. “How can this man give us his flesh to eat?” they asked.
53 So Jesus said again, “I tell you the truth, unless you eat the flesh of the Son of Man and drink his blood, you cannot have eternal life within you.54 But anyone who eats my flesh and drinks my blood has eternal life, and I will raise that person at the last day.55 For my flesh is true food, and my blood is true drink.56 Anyone who eats my flesh and drinks my blood remains in me, and I in him.57 I live because of the living Father who sent me; in the same way, anyone who feeds on me will live because of me.58 I am the true bread that came down from heaven. Anyone who eats this bread will not die as your ancestors did (even though they ate the manna) but will live forever.”
59 He said these things while he was teaching in the synagogue in Capernaum.
Many Disciples Desert Jesus
60 Many of his disciples said, “This is very hard to understand. How can anyone accept it?”
61 Jesus was aware that his disciples were complaining, so he said to them, “Does this offend you?62 Then what will you think if you see the Son of Man ascend to heaven again?63 The Spirit alone gives eternal life. Human effort accomplishes nothing. And the very words I have spoken to you are spirit and life.64 But some of you do not believe me.” (For Jesus knew from the beginning which ones didn’t believe, and he knew who would betray him.)65 Then he said, “That is why I said that people can’t come to me unless the Father gives them to me.”
66 At this point many of his disciples turned away and deserted him.67 Then Jesus turned to the Twelve and asked, “Are you also going to leave?”
68 Simon Peter replied, “Lord, to whom would we go? You have the words that give eternal life.69 We believe, and we know you are the Holy One of God.”
70 Then Jesus said, “I chose the twelve of you, but one is a devil.”71 He was speaking of Judas, son of Simon Iscariot, one of the Twelve, who would later betray him.
“Slow, accurate, consistent,daily habits and practices sessions of honoring God with all that you are will help transform your life into a better place suited for you and your family in Heaven.”~Jon Barnes
You can use good books, apps, scriptures, and other factual information to enhance the quality of your life and the people around you.Your honest motives, commitment, and hard work will dictate the success of your faith and love with God and people.Teach and share what success God has given you and keep following His Commandments.
The key to learning a new language is to consistently work on it each day.Pick how much time you would like to spend on a goal and keep working.Too often we all tend to give up before the big results begin to show.Small wins are very crucial in learning all things.Having realistic goals are invaluable.
Each second, minute, hour, day, and year our habits grow stronger and we become experts in what we learn and teach ourselves.If you are an expert at being lazy, then your reward will clearly exemplify such behavior.This habit or behavior is what you teach yourself.Take care in doing things the right way, slowly from the beginning and enjoy your success through the finish line.
Are you getting your habits from God or the devil?
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For the choir director: A psalm of David.
1 O Lord, I have come to you for protection; don’t let me be disgraced. Save me, for you do what is right. 2 Turn your ear to listen to me; rescue me quickly. Be my rock of protection, a fortress where I will be safe. 3 You are my rock and my fortress. For the honor of your name, lead me out of this danger. 4 Pull me from the trap my enemies set for me, for I find protection in you alone. 5 I entrust my spirit into your hand. Rescue me, Lord, for you are a faithful God.
6 I hate those who worship worthless idols. I trust in the Lord. 7 I will be glad and rejoice in your unfailing love, for you have seen my troubles, and you care about the anguish of my soul. 8 You have not handed me over to my enemies but have set me in a safe place.
9 Have mercy on me, Lord, for I am in distress. Tears blur my eyes. My body and soul are withering away. 10 I am dying from grief; my years are shortened by sadness. Sin has drained my strength; I am wasting away from within. 11 I am scorned by all my enemies and despised by my neighbors— even my friends are afraid to come near me. When they see me on the street, they run the other way. 12 I am ignored as if I were dead, as if I were a broken pot. 13 I have heard the many rumors about me, and I am surrounded by terror. My enemies conspire against me, plotting to take my life.
14 But I am trusting you, O Lord, saying, “You are my God!” 15 My future is in your hands. Rescue me from those who hunt me down relentlessly. 16 Let your favor shine on your servant. In your unfailing love, rescue me. 17 Don’t let me be disgraced, O Lord, for I call out to you for help. Let the wicked be disgraced; let them lie silent in the grave.[a] 18 Silence their lying lips— those proud and arrogant lips that accuse the godly.
19 How great is the goodness you have stored up for those who fear you. You lavish it on those who come to you for protection, blessing them before the watching world. 20 You hide them in the shelter of your presence, safe from those who conspire against them. You shelter them in your presence, far from accusing tongues.
21 Praise the Lord, for he has shown me the wonders of his unfailing love. He kept me safe when my city was under attack. 22 In panic I cried out, “I am cut off from the Lord!” But you heard my cry for mercy and answered my call for help.
23 Love the Lord, all you godly ones! For the Lord protects those who are loyal to him, but he harshly punishes the arrogant. 24 So be strong and courageous, all you who put your hope in the Lord!
“The best ideas can come from the most unlikely places and the best solutions to your problems can come from the most unlikely faces.”~Jon Barnes
Open up to the truth when you hear it.Truthful information is not hard to recognize.Allow yourself time to test this information with God’s truth and you’ll make great choices in life.
Ignore the truth and the doors will close shut in your life.Success without true happiness in Christ is empty.Opportunities for long-lasting love will disappear.Anyone and get and buy fake love, but true love comes to the few who can focus on God’s Word.
Ignorance will shut the door on truth and close its ears to the facts of life.People make up stuff to sound intelligent, lie, cheat, and steal from the innocent.Living with the lies of the wicked and walking in their path will shut your door into the Kingdom of God.
What tips from God will you use to tip the scale of Truth and Love in your direction?
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6 Then Job replied:
2 “If only my anguish could be weighed and all my misery be placed on the scales! 3 It would surely outweigh the sand of the seas— no wonder my words have been impetuous. 4 The arrows of the Almighty are in me, my spirit drinks in their poison; God’s terrors are marshaled against me. 5 Does a wild donkey bray when it has grass, or an ox bellow when it has fodder? 6 Is tasteless food eaten without salt, or is there flavor in the sap of the mallow[a]? 7 I refuse to touch it; such food makes me ill.
8 “Oh, that I might have my request, that God would grant what I hope for, 9 that God would be willing to crush me, to let loose his hand and cut off my life! 10 Then I would still have this consolation— my joy in unrelenting pain— that I had not denied the words of the Holy One.
11 “What strength do I have, that I should still hope? What prospects, that I should be patient? 12 Do I have the strength of stone? Is my flesh bronze? 13 Do I have any power to help myself, now that success has been driven from me?
14 “Anyone who withholds kindness from a friend forsakes the fear of the Almighty. 15 But my brothers are as undependable as intermittent streams, as the streams that overflow 16 when darkened by thawing ice and swollen with melting snow, 17 but that stop flowing in the dry season, and in the heat vanish from their channels. 18 Caravans turn aside from their routes; they go off into the wasteland and perish. 19 The caravans of Tema look for water, the traveling merchants of Sheba look in hope. 20 They are distressed, because they had been confident; they arrive there, only to be disappointed. 21 Now you too have proved to be of no help; you see something dreadful and are afraid. 22 Have I ever said, ‘Give something on my behalf, pay a ransom for me from your wealth, 23 deliver me from the hand of the enemy, rescue me from the clutches of the ruthless’?
24 “Teach me, and I will be quiet; show me where I have been wrong. 25 How painful are honest words! But what do your arguments prove? 26 Do you mean to correct what I say, and treat my desperate words as wind? 27 You would even cast lots for the fatherless and barter away your friend.
28 “But now be so kind as to look at me. Would I lie to your face? 29 Relent, do not be unjust; reconsider, for my integrity is at stake.[b] 30 Is there any wickedness on my lips? Can my mouth not discern malice?
“Reading a chapter in the Bible for story content, wisdom, and comprehension with love each day is better than memorizing things you do not believe or understand.”~Jon Barnes
You don’t get credit for reading and doing the work that is required of all of us who follow Jesus Christ if you are a hypocrite. Your parents cannot save you.Faking the truth, making up Bible stories, and doing whatever comes to mind will not get you into heaven.
Progress is consistent and seemingly slow to the successful student who is steady but crosses the finish line to finish life’s race.The honest work that is put into the Kingdom of God is rewarded, as a true believer walking in the faith and through the Pearly Gates.Money is not the definition of success, nor does it have value in Heaven.
Enjoy the benefits of doing your homework over the years, since you will have solutions to problems that will arise in your life. Hypocrites live fake lifestyles with the devil.Bless God for training you and giving you the capacity to follow after righteousness. Doing the good work and exercising your faith with love, is a job well done.
How do you reason with people, family, and enemies void of biblical truth, comprehension, and love or do you just waste your time arguing with them?
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2 On another day the angels[a] came to present themselves before the Lord, and Satan also came with them to present himself before him.2 And the Lord said to Satan, “Where have you come from?”
Satan answered the Lord, “From roaming throughout the earth, going back and forth on it.”
3 Then the Lord said to Satan, “Have you considered my servant Job? There is no one on earth like him; he is blameless and upright, a man who fears God and shuns evil. And he still maintains his integrity, though you incited me against him to ruin him without any reason.”
4 “Skin for skin!” Satan replied. “A man will give all he has for his own life.5 But now stretch out your hand and strike his flesh and bones, and he will surely curse you to your face.”
6 The Lord said to Satan, “Very well, then, he is in your hands; but you must spare his life.”
7 So Satan went out from the presence of the Lord and afflicted Job with painful sores from the soles of his feet to the crown of his head.8 Then Job took a piece of broken pottery and scraped himself with it as he sat among the ashes.
9 His wife said to him, “Are you still maintaining your integrity? Curse God and die!”
10 He replied, “You are talking like a foolish[b] woman. Shall we accept good from God, and not trouble?”
In all this, Job did not sin in what he said.
11 When Job’s three friends, Eliphaz the Temanite, Bildad the Shuhite and Zophar the Naamathite, heard about all the troubles that had come upon him, they set out from their homes and met together by agreement to go and sympathize with him and comfort him.12 When they saw him from a distance, they could hardly recognize him; they began to weep aloud, and they tore their robes and sprinkled dust on their heads.13 Then they sat on the ground with him for seven days and seven nights. No one said a word to him, because they saw how great his suffering was.
“You only have a certain amount of time on this train ride and your life will be over, to be judged and shipped to your final resting place of love or evil.” ~ Jon Barnes
What you do and how you take care of your personal boxcar will determine the outcome of your train ride. When you don’t listen to the Conductor of your life to take proper care of your boxcar, it is your fault. Your boxcar, your soul, will be burned as a result of your disobedience and personal negligence.
We are all connected to the train that God has built and when you die, your train will be discarded or lauded, based on your life’s conduct, construct, and commitment to Jesus. The test of life will be graded and the search for the Love of Christ in your heart will be conducted. The Conductor will sentence you to the hot jail car from Heaven’s Gates.
Hell is like a steam engine and you are the black coal that didn’t listen or do what the Conductor Suggested. You pretended to be the God of your world, life, and stuff. The cost for such disobedience is too much for the little success you thought you gained. Your suffering will sound like the whistle of the heated steam Engine Train, without a drop of water to cool your tongue.
I love being a passenger of God’s train, do you?
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2 Chronicles 22
Ahaziah Rules in Judah
22 Then the people of Jerusalem made Ahaziah, Jehoram’s youngest son, their next king, since the marauding bands who came with the Arabs[a] had killed all the older sons. So Ahaziah son of Jehoram reigned as king of Judah.
2 Ahaziah was twenty-two[b] years old when he became king, and he reigned in Jerusalem one year. His mother was Athaliah, a granddaughter of King Omri.3 Ahaziah also followed the evil example of King Ahab’s family, for his mother encouraged him in doing wrong.4 He did what was evil in the Lord’s sight, just as Ahab’s family had done. They even became his advisers after the death of his father, and they led him to ruin.
5 Following their evil advice, Ahaziah joined Joram,[c] the son of King Ahab of Israel, in his war against King Hazael of Aram at Ramoth-gilead. When the Arameans[d] wounded Joram in the battle,6 he returned to Jezreel to recover from the wounds he had received at Ramoth.[e] Because Joram was wounded, King Ahaziah[f] of Judah went to Jezreel to visit him.
7 But God had decided that this visit would be Ahaziah’s downfall. While he was there, Ahaziah went out with Joram to meet Jehu grandson of Nimshi,[g] whom the Lord had appointed to destroy the dynasty of Ahab.
8 While Jehu was executing judgment against the family of Ahab, he happened to meet some of Judah’s officials and Ahaziah’s relatives[h] who were traveling with Ahaziah. So Jehu killed them all.9 Then Jehu’s men searched for Ahaziah, and they found him hiding in the city of Samaria. They brought him to Jehu, who killed him. Ahaziah was given a decent burial because the people said, “He was the grandson of Jehoshaphat—a man who sought the Lord with all his heart.” But none of the surviving members of Ahaziah’s family was capable of ruling the kingdom.
Queen Athaliah Rules in Judah
10 When Athaliah, the mother of King Ahaziah of Judah, learned that her son was dead, she began to destroy the rest of Judah’s royal family.11 But Ahaziah’s sister Jehosheba,[i] the daughter of King Jehoram, took Ahaziah’s infant son, Joash, and stole him away from among the rest of the king’s children, who were about to be killed. She put Joash and his nurse in a bedroom. In this way, Jehosheba, wife of Jehoiada the priest and sister of Ahaziah, hid the child so that Athaliah could not murder him.12 Joash remained hidden in the Temple of God for six years while Athaliah ruled over the land.
“Good old-fashioned, individual work and responsibility creates the net for success with God’s blessings of reaping what you sow.” ~ Jon Barnes
Your honest flow is not a show, but an opportunity to see the hand of God working in your life, with your personal touch and efforts, based on His principles and not your own logic.Take notice of how God responds to your loving kindness and obvious obedience to basic scripture principles. Now, test these principles with your individual actions to learn how God operates with you personally. You will see the hand of God for yourself.
Since our personalities and work ethics vary like fingerprints, our measure of faith, focus, and rewards will vary as well. Each person will get what they deserve and God will determine why. Pray that your personality grows towards obeying God and ignoring your own free will. The individual choice is only yours to make and it will match the DNA of your personality.
Your life comes alive when you see the results of obeying God’s good steps, by avoiding the bad steps in life.Respect and honor will follow the good steps that you take.Repent and avoid old mistakes. Habitual sinners are liars who refuse to grow up, change, or improve, because, they stay busy pointing at the mistakes of others, with no focus on God and themselves.
Do you lack the focus of listening, reading, and learning about God and His applications?
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2 Samuel 8
David’s Military Victories
8 After this, David defeated and subdued the Philistines by conquering Gath, their largest town.[a]2 David also conquered the land of Moab. He made the people lie down on the ground in a row, and he measured them off in groups with a length of rope. He measured off two groups to be executed for every one group to be spared. The Moabites who were spared became David’s subjects and paid him tribute money.
3 David also destroyed the forces of Hadadezer son of Rehob, king of Zobah, when Hadadezer marched out to strengthen his control along the Euphrates River.4 David captured 1,000 chariots, 7,000 charioteers,[b] and 20,000 foot soldiers. He crippled all the chariot horses except enough for 100 chariots.
5 When Arameans from Damascus arrived to help King Hadadezer, David killed 22,000 of them.6 Then he placed several army garrisons in Damascus, the Aramean capital, and the Arameans became David’s subjects and paid him tribute money. So the Lord made David victorious wherever he went.
7 David brought the gold shields of Hadadezer’s officers to Jerusalem,8 along with a large amount of bronze from Hadadezer’s towns of Tebah[c] and Berothai.
9 When King Toi of Hamath heard that David had destroyed the entire army of Hadadezer,10 he sent his son Joram to congratulate King David for his successful campaign. Hadadezer and Toi had been enemies and were often at war. Joram presented David with many gifts of silver, gold, and bronze.
11 King David dedicated all these gifts to the Lord, as he did with the silver and gold from the other nations he had defeated—12 from Edom,[d] Moab, Ammon, Philistia, and Amalek—and from Hadadezer son of Rehob, king of Zobah.
13 So David became even more famous when he returned from destroying 18,000 Edomites[e]in the Valley of Salt.14 He placed army garrisons throughout Edom, and all the Edomites became David’s subjects. In fact, the Lord made David victorious wherever he went.
15 So David reigned over all Israel and did what was just and right for all his people.16 Joab son of Zeruiah was commander of the army. Jehoshaphat son of Ahilud was the royal historian.17 Zadok son of Ahitub and Ahimelech son of Abiathar were the priests. Seraiah was the court secretary.18 Benaiah son of Jehoiada was captain of the king’s bodyguard.[f]And David’s sons served as priestly leaders.[g]
“Take one step closer to what God wants you to do and notice how doors began to open up in your life.” ~ Jon Barnes
Each little step adds up to a mile of good work that flows in the direction of success with what you are doing by faith.Your faith is strengthened by a group of these little good steps of obedience. Eventually, you will complete the goal and inspire others to move by faith, with little steps, as you move more and more with God.
Flowing with good, small, consistent steps will move you into your direction of faith because you believe that God is guiding your steps of joy.Teaching others will help you to learn more about what you are giving. Allowing others to participate in the learning process will guide you into a future of obedience and contentment. Look into what you are stepping on and you will see the connections appear.
More connections are made by like-minded people stepping in the same direction and creating energy and synergy that is required to build the next bridge.People should work together, but most of the time, you must do your own homework to complete your own bridge and goal that connects to God. Personal help is developed in your personal, secret, prayer closet.
Did you count your steps with God Today?
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1 Samuel 1
The Birth of Samuel
1 There was a certain man from Ramathaim, a Zuphite[a] from the hill country of Ephraim,whose name was Elkanah son of Jeroham, the son of Elihu, the son of Tohu, the son of Zuph, an Ephraimite.2 He had two wives; one was called Hannah and the other Peninnah. Peninnah had children, but Hannah had none.
3 Year after year this man went up from his town to worship and sacrifice to the Lord Almighty at Shiloh, where Hophni and Phinehas, the two sons of Eli, were priests of the Lord.4 Whenever the day came for Elkanah to sacrifice, he would give portions of the meat to his wife Peninnah and to all her sons and daughters.5 But to Hannah he gave a double portionbecause he loved her, and the Lord had closed her womb.6 Because the Lord had closed Hannah’s womb, her rival kept provoking her in order to irritate her.7 This went on year after year. Whenever Hannah went up to the house of the Lord, her rival provoked her till she wept and would not eat.8 Her husband Elkanah would say to her, “Hannah, why are you weeping? Why don’t you eat? Why are you downhearted? Don’t I mean more to you than ten sons?”
9 Once when they had finished eating and drinking in Shiloh, Hannah stood up. Now Eli the priest was sitting on his chair by the doorpost of the Lord’s house.10 In her deep anguishHannah prayed to the Lord, weeping bitterly.11 And she made a vow, saying, “Lord Almighty, if you will only look on your servant’s misery and remember me, and not forget your servant but give her a son, then I will give him to the Lord for all the days of his life, and no razor will ever be used on his head.”
12 As she kept on praying to the Lord, Eli observed her mouth.13 Hannah was praying in her heart, and her lips were moving but her voice was not heard. Eli thought she was drunk14 and said to her, “How long are you going to stay drunk? Put away your wine.”
15 “Not so, my lord,” Hannah replied, “I am a woman who is deeply troubled. I have not been drinking wine or beer; I was pouring out my soul to the Lord.16 Do not take your servant for a wicked woman; I have been praying here out of my great anguish and grief.”
17 Eli answered, “Go in peace, and may the God of Israel grant you what you have asked of him.”
18 She said, “May your servant find favor in your eyes.” Then she went her way and ate something, and her face was no longer downcast.
19 Early the next morning they arose and worshiped before the Lord and then went back to their home at Ramah. Elkanah made love to his wife Hannah, and the Lord remembered her.20 So in the course of time Hannah became pregnant and gave birth to a son. She named him Samuel,[b] saying, “Because I asked the Lord for him.”
Hannah Dedicates Samuel
21 When her husband Elkanah went up with all his family to offer the annual sacrifice to the Lord and to fulfill his vow,22 Hannah did not go. She said to her husband, “After the boy is weaned, I will take him and present him before the Lord, and he will live there always.”[c]
23 “Do what seems best to you,” her husband Elkanah told her. “Stay here until you have weaned him; only may the Lord make good his[d] word.” So the woman stayed at home and nursed her son until she had weaned him.
24 After he was weaned, she took the boy with her, young as he was, along with a three-year-old bull,[e] an ephah[f] of flour and a skin of wine, and brought him to the house of the Lord at Shiloh.25 When the bull had been sacrificed, they brought the boy to Eli,26 and she said to him, “Pardon me, my lord. As surely as you live, I am the woman who stood here beside you praying to the Lord.27 I prayed for this child, and the Lord has granted me what I asked of him.28 So now I give him to the Lord. For his whole life he will be given over to the Lord.” And he worshiped the Lord there.
“Your life will seem like a Lotto Game of wasted tickets, money, and time, when you do not practice, study, check your homework, and work faithfully at your business with God.” ~ Jon Barnes
People play games because they choose not to listen to God and sound instructions. Creativity and success are an earned process of obedience, commitment, and completion of simple tasks, God has asked you to perform. Laziness prefers playing Lotto type Games in life, hoping for an easy way, quick dollar, fast solution to avoid God’s Directions. Prove your worth!
Drugs, alcohol, lying, cheating, and stealing and other lustful ways of avoiding the truth, wasting time, and promoting poverty in your life, are dead end roads, which is empty and unsatisfying. Ask God to help you to not waste your time and energy, by completing your little quizzes and tests each day. God will not pay you for doing nothing, while you pretend to work. Do not become homeless.
Take the job God gives you, since you do not have work, and be thankful for all that He does in your life. Learning to follow directions, completing assignments, following up, and closing the deal, is better than surfing the internet, talking on the phone, gossiping, without a job to complete.
Did you know that complaining is like playing the Lotto with your time, works and ideas, which is like wasting money and resources that God gave you to complete your destiny?
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22 The Lord said to Moses,2 “Tell Aaron and his sons to be very careful with the sacred gifts that the Israelites set apart for me, so they do not bring shame on my holy name. I am the Lord.3 Give them the following instructions.
“In all future generations, if any of your descendants is ceremonially unclean when he approaches the sacred offerings that the people of Israel consecrate to the Lord, he must be cut off from my presence. I am the Lord.
4 “If any of Aaron’s descendants has a skin disease[a] or any kind of discharge that makes him ceremonially unclean, he may not eat from the sacred offerings until he has been pronounced clean. He also becomes unclean by touching a corpse, or by having an emission of semen,5 or by touching a small animal that is unclean, or by touching someone who is ceremonially unclean for any reason.6 The man who is defiled in any of these ways will remain unclean until evening. He may not eat from the sacred offerings until he has bathed himself in water.7 When the sun goes down, he will be ceremonially clean again and may eat from the sacred offerings, for this is his food.8 He may not eat an animal that has died a natural death or has been torn apart by wild animals, for this would defile him. I am the Lord.
9 “The priests must follow my instructions carefully. Otherwise they will be punished for their sin and will die for violating my instructions. I am the Lord who makes them holy.
10 “No one outside a priest’s family may eat the sacred offerings. Even guests and hired workers in a priest’s home are not allowed to eat them.11 However, if the priest buys a slave for himself, the slave may eat from the sacred offerings. And if his slaves have children, they also may share his food.12 If a priest’s daughter marries someone outside the priestly family, she may no longer eat the sacred offerings.13 But if she becomes a widow or is divorced and has no children to support her, and she returns to live in her father’s home as in her youth, she may eat her father’s food again. Otherwise, no one outside a priest’s family may eat the sacred offerings.
14 “Any such person who eats the sacred offerings without realizing it must pay the priest for the amount eaten, plus an additional 20 percent.15 The priests must not let the Israelites defile the sacred offerings brought to the Lord16 by allowing unauthorized people to eat them. This would bring guilt upon them and require them to pay compensation. I am the Lord who makes them holy.”
Worthy and Unworthy Offerings
17 And the Lord said to Moses,18 “Give Aaron and his sons and all the Israelites these instructions, which apply both to native Israelites and to the foreigners living among you.
“If you present a gift as a burnt offering to the Lord, whether it is to fulfill a vow or is a voluntary offering,19 you[b] will be accepted only if your offering is a male animal with no defects. It may be a bull, a ram, or a male goat.20 Do not present an animal with defects, because the Lord will not accept it on your behalf.
21 “If you present a peace offering to the Lord from the herd or the flock, whether it is to fulfill a vow or is a voluntary offering, you must offer a perfect animal. It may have no defect of any kind.22 You must not offer an animal that is blind, crippled, or injured, or that has a wart, a skin sore, or scabs. Such animals must never be offered on the altar as special gifts to the Lord.23 If a bull[c] or lamb has a leg that is too long or too short, it may be offered as a voluntary offering, but it may not be offered to fulfill a vow.24 If an animal has damaged testicles or is castrated, you may not offer it to the Lord. You must never do this in your own land,25 and you must not accept such an animal from foreigners and then offer it as a sacrifice to your God. Such animals will not be accepted on your behalf, for they are mutilated or defective.”
26 And the Lord said to Moses,27 “When a calf or lamb or goat is born, it must be left with its mother for seven days. From the eighth day on, it will be acceptable as a special gift to the Lord.28 But you must not slaughter a mother animal and her offspring on the same day, whether from the herd or the flock.29 When you bring a thanksgiving offering to the Lord, sacrifice it properly so you will be accepted.30 Eat the entire sacrificial animal on the day it is presented. Do not leave any of it until the next morning. I am the Lord.
31 “You must faithfully keep all my commands by putting them into practice, for I am the Lord.32 Do not bring shame on my holy name, for I will display my holiness among the people of Israel. I am the Lord who makes you holy.33 It was I who rescued you from the land of Egypt, that I might be your God. I am the Lord.”