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Wednesday

Deal Or No Deal

by: Chancee Christian



As-is defined: as it is; its present state or condition, in the existing circumstances.

When cars have an ‘As Is’ sign on it, it’s an instant Buyer Beware, because getting into it you don’t know what the problems really are until you go forth with the deal…. they only tell you what they want you to know….. So then you gotta take it or leave it…. Deal or No Deal? Jesus said “DEAL” for ALL of us…..

Long before I got saved & before I knew Jesus as my personal Savior, I felt like I had to do Sooooo much in order for God to accept me, to bless me & even to hear His voice. I had a major fear of death because I knew in my heart, at that time of my life, I would be in hell if I died…..so I constantly repented, not truly understanding what repentance was (stop & turn away from)…….

Come as you are
So many people out there feel the same way I felt about God’s Acceptance! I’m so glad God placed me here to call the devil out on his lie & to tell you God wants you ‘As Is’!!! He wants the crazy you, the high you, the drunk you, the hurting you, the crying you, the doubtful you, the you that no one ever sees, the one that cries at night, the you that’s stressed out, GOD WANTS YOU!!!! ALL OF YOU!

But you MUST surrender, your will for God’s Will
You don’t have to hide certain things about yourself…..You don’t have to pretend with God….You don’t have to act like everything in your life is fine, if it’s not.  God is not like people,  repeat that, God is not like people! -Isaiah 55:8-9

In Psalms 139:7-10 it clearly states:” Where can I go to get away from your Spirit? Where can I run from you? If I go up to the heavens, you are there. If I lie down in the grave, you are there. If I rise with the sun in the east and settle in the west beyond the sea, even there you would guide me. With your right hand you would hold me.”
So instead if trying to run and hide, ducking and dodging God, we should make Him our hiding place, our place of peace, our mini vacation not only in times of trouble but always;

Psalms 32:7 You are my hiding place. You protect me from my troubles and fill me with songs of salvation.” It's time to come to the realization that God loves you….that won’t change, God wants you the way that you are, not all jazzed up and without flaws because remember Jesus died for sinners not for the people who think they have it all “together”……

This how we know it’s REAL….. In Romans 5:8
But God demonstrates His own love toward us, in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us.”
While we are/were still messed up, ugly, evil, sinful, hateful, doubtful, low down, crazy, drunk, high, hurt & fake! He still died!!!! Thank you Jesus!

God wants YOU…..“AS IS-NO WARRANTY”

Tuesday

The Virgin Theory: They Do Exist

by: Rowzina Middleton

I am still a virgin. Yes I know. Shocking isn’t it???    

I am 29 years old and I am a virgin. And I am proud of it. I have not voluntarily given myself away to anyone. My morals and values would not allow me to go all the way with anyone. My first kiss wasn't even until High School, when at least half of the people my age at the time, had kissed someone by like, age 10. I made up in my mind and was convinced in my heart that my virginity was something special. And I was not freely giving it up to just anyone. I knew then, like I still believe now, that one day I will get married. I was always taught that sex was for married people. Once married, it is then biblically legal to “go all the way.” No guy I have come across deserved my time let alone, my essence.

So I chose to wait. I still choose to wait. Or perhaps, it was the conversation my Dad decided to have with me after finding out I had reached puberty. I can laugh now. my Daddy was trying to scare me. Little did He know, the Public schools had already started teaching Sex Education and I knew a lot more than I led on. (But that is another blog for another time.)  
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Some people are shocked when I say I am a virgin. Others think something is wrong with me, I don’t like men or I’m just plain crazy. Simply put, I am just a lady who honors her morals and values. I am proud to be a virgin.

My virginity is priceless and will be given away by choice to that special individual that God has assigned to me just for me. Keeping myself is a choice. I do my best to honor God with my whole life, not just bits and pieces. So I will wait to utilize sex in the context that it was created for.
While I wait for my spouse. I will continue to work on bettering myself. I am a Proverbs 31 woman. I am happy with my decision to wait.  

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So yes. Adult virgins past the age of 25 do exist. Media nor society influenced my choice. In learning to love myself, I have learned my worth. Being with just anyone is not an option for me. Being a virgin is  great. It is a wonderful thing. Do not get me wrong. It has not been easy. But I manage.  
There are many meanings to the word virgin. I consider myself to be a virgin because I have not voluntarily given myself away to anyone. I have never had sex. I am holding on to this gift until it is time to release it.
What is your definition of a virgin?
Can’t wait to hear from you.  


Rowzina
(Lady Unstoppable)
#proudvirgin
 


The original post for this blog can be found kingdommotivation.wordpress.com. Follow Rowzina on instagram @kingdom_motivation and on Twitter @motivator_row.

Monday

Are You Bold Enough?

by: Ruthann McKenzie


Nothing fabulous ever happened within a comfort zone. This does not mean go crazy and spend all your money and credit cards on great shoes (I know I would if it did). However, stop acting and living each moment in fear. Be bold, make bold moves, and think outside of the comfort zones. This does not mean you will not feel scared when you do something bold and new, but you do it anyhow.

Surprise yourself by doing something new and exciting. You may actually enjoy it. There have been plenty of times with my design and photography work that I have decided to be bold and do something others would not do. Sometimes it has paid off for me and other times it hasn’t. Either or that did not stop me from trying and thinking out of the box with new ideas. If anything, when an idea I thought I would like did not turn out as I planned something new was born from it. Boldness births new ideas.



Everyone is doing the same thing. Where has that ever gotten you thinking the same thoughts as others and doing the same thing? Not too far or maybe it has gotten you to the point of envying those who do think out of the box. Creativity begins with a bold idea that someone executes. We all have the same power within us if we choose to harness it. It is okay to try something different because we are not meant to live in boxes.


Before we all hopped on bandwagon trends someone had to step out on a limb and be bold enough to try it first. Well, why can you not be that person to try something bold and start a new trend? Even if a trend does not happen from it, then just be happy you stand out from the crowd as a unique soul God created. If we have a creative Creator who hand crafted the world, then we are equally created with bold creativity on the inside of us. Harness that bold creative power and see where it takes you fearlessly.

Wednesday

Christian Entrepreneurs, Vision Boards, and The Law of Attraction.

by: Nicole Huffman Hollins


"Write the Vision and Make it Plain"

I was recently conducting some unrelated, online research when I happened upon a message board asking whether vision boards were demonic.  Given what I have observed among Christian entrepreneurs lately, I was surprised that there were people on both sides of this issue.  I thought everyone was in love with attracting and envisioning material wealth.  After reading the message board and reading other articles on this topic, I have concluded that the problem is not the vision board.  The problem is what people put on the vision board and the Scriptures they use to back-up the activity.

My primary concern is whether people are actually reading these Scriptures they are quoting to support what they are doing.  If they are reading them, are they reading the entire verse?  Are they reading the verses around it?  Have they read other Scriptures addressing the topic, because Scripture verifies Scripture?  In other words, are they studying the Scriptures are merely proof-texting and taking verses out of context to justify their choices?   Moreover, if they have read the Scripture, did they seek the Holy Spirit for wisdom and understanding?  If you are going to make a vision board or follow the Law of Attraction, that is your free will choice, just do not misuse Scripture to support it.
The following are a few of the most popular verses I have heard used by Christian entrepreneurs regarding this issue.

And the LORD answered me, and said, Write the vision, and make it plain upon tables, that he may run that readeth it.
Habakkuk 2:2

The vision (prophesy) was first and foremost about Jesus.  It was not about a Ferrari, exotic vacation or a McMansion.  Secondly, a simple reading of the Scripture shows that the vision that was to be written was not meant for the prophet but was meant as a warning to others.  Third, were verses one, three, and four read before deciding this was Scripture to use to support creating a vision board with visions of everything but Jesus?  Is your vision board about warning others of what’s to come or is it only about what you want or think you need?  If it’s the latter, you should not be using Habakkuk to support your position.  Moreover, all prophetic books are about telling people what is to come- Jesus- so they may repent.  The vision in Habakkuk was about warning people so they could repent.  It is problematic when this Scripture is watered down to say that the vision entails putting glossy pictures of material items on a piece of cardboard.

Delight thyself also in the LORD; and he shall give thee the desires of thine heart.
Psalm 37:4

This Scripture says that God will give us the desires He wants us to have.  It does not say He will give us our heart's desire.  These are two very different things.  The desires we receive are God’s, they are not our own.  In light of  Jeremiah 17:9 telling us, "The heart is deceitful above all things, and desperately wicked: who can know it?," we should be glad that He does not give us everything our heart wants.
...and calleth those things which be not as though they were.
-Romans 4:17

First, the beginning of this verse is often left out.  In its entirety, it reads, “(As it is written, I have made thee a father of many nations,) before him whom he believed, even God, who quickeneth the dead, and calleth those things which be not as though they were.”  This verse is about God and how He is the creator of all who spoke things into existence.  It is not about man being the creator.

We are not little gods and therein lies the issue with most vision boards and The Law of Attraction.

People are being led to believe that we are co-creators, and in some forums that we are the creators.  This is simply false.  He is the potter.  We are the clay.  We will never be on His level, and this was the thinking held by Adam and Eve that led to them eating the forbidden fruit.  Do not be led astray by the smooth words.  Test the spirit by the Spirit so that in your quest to be super entrepreneur you do not fall prey to the same heart that caused Adam and Eve to fall.  If your vision board is about anything other than your Christian walk, it is time to re-evaluate your heart.  An alternative you may want to consider is to do a "Scripture Board" that has Scriptures upon which you meditate that are in line with the Holy Spirit's guidance.

Part two of this topic will look at Scriptures addressing the attitude followers of Christ should have regarding material matters.




-Nicole Huffman Hollins is a Speaker, Writer, and Attorney. For more insight from Nicole visit her website NowWithNicole.com and connect with her on Twitter: @NowWithNicole

Tuesday

Broken Crayons Still Color

by: Ruthann McKenzie


Have you ever witnessed young children coloring? At some point, the inevitable will happen where a crayon will break. For some small children it is heart breaking if it is there favorite color. Nonetheless, you will never see a young child stop coloring forever because one crayon broke. They may fuss, but if it is their favorite crayon they'll continue to use that crayon.

I love the analogy of the broken crayon still coloring. When we get older we begin to lose our ability to dream and life begins to break us down, year after year. Eventually we begin to forget we are beautiful and created to shine. We can still be used for remarkable things when we yield to our Creator who can restore us to fullness. It does not matter how we became broken beings, we can still be used for greatness.

In Psalm 51, King David is writing of his brokenness. At this time, he had sinned and felt the remorse of his actions and was broken hearted for his actions. Even in his brokenness, he knew that God could restore him when he repented and sacrificed his broken heart to Christ. King David knew that his broken and contrite heart could draw him closer to the Lord instead of driving him further away. The sacrifices of God can be our broken spirit and through the broken pieces light can shine through.

Today, in this moment, your future is brighter. Your broken pieces can be used for more than regret and shame, but instead to inspire and uplift another soul. Brokenness brings us closer to Christ. At the valley, the lowest point, the Lord restores when you hand those broken pieces to Him. If you don't believe this, perhaps in time you will, but know broken crayons still color.

Monday

10 Best Motivational Quotes by Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.

Let your freedom ring!

You're only destined to become what you decide to be. sounds simple enough, but with that decision is the recognition that we have the light and the power on the inside of us to be everything God says we are.

As we honor Dr. Martin Luther King's life on this particular day that has been set aside. We should realize we don't have to be a phenomenal amazing public figure or an amazing super hero with a day honoring our name, to be of service and achieve our purpose, just doing the small things we're able to do is what makes us extraordinary. Dr. King left us motivational words that we can use everyday to be of service to the world and fulfill our highest calling.


  • Step out on faith: 
“Faith is taking the first step even when you don’t see the whole staircase.”

  • Never give up:
“If you can’t fly then run, if you can’t run then walk, if you can’t walk then crawl, but whatever you do you have to keep moving forward.”

  • Hard work pays off: 
“Change does not roll in on the wheels of inevitability, but comes through continuous struggle.”

  • Be resolute: 
“The ultimate measure of a man is not where he stands in moments of comfort and convenience, but where he stands at times of challenge and controversy.”

  • Stand up for justice above all:
“Our lives begin to end the day we become silent about things that matter.”

  • Keep your head up:
 “Never succumb to the temptation of bitterness.”

  • Be dedicated to service:
"Life’s most persistent and urgent question is, ‘What are you doing for others?’"

  • Be gracious with yourself and others: 
“Forgiveness is not an occasional act. It is a permanent attitude.”

  • Stay strong, and keep the faith:
“We must accept finite disappointment, but never lose infinite hope.”

  • Keep God first at all times:
“Love is the only force capable of transforming an enemy into friend.”

What are some of your favorite quotes or sayings from Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. that inspire you everyday? Let's us know in the comment section below. You can follow the latest updates on Facebook and the Breath Of Life Daily Newsletter. 

Wednesday

Is It Tough To Follow Christ?

There is a God-shaped vacuum in the heart of every man and only God can fill it.  -Blaise Pascal

Clarence and Robert McClendon were two Christian brothers who did well in their careers. Robert was a prominent lawyer and Clarence was the author of a popular book. Clarence was deeply involved with the interracial action-groups of the 1950's and 60's, in Georgia, USA. Once Clarence asked Robert, now a politician, for legal help, which he refused, because his political ambitions would be jeopardized. To rationalize his refusal, Robert told his brother: I follow Jesus up to a point. I follow him to the cross, but not on the cross. I am not getting myself crucified. To which Clarence replied: Robert, you are not a follower of Jesus; you are only an admirer of his.
     
Perhaps Clarence could repeat those words to us. We bear the name of Christ, Christians, but prefer to formulate our own code. In Europe, the Christmas Holidays are called the Winter Holidays. Why? Ostensibly, they do not want to wound the sentiments of people of other religions. Perhaps some segments of Christians, in other parts of the world, have joined their European brothers in switching to the changed terminology, for the same reason.
     
The Hindus have not changed their festival Diwali to something more akin to Christian idiom. The Muslims have not renamed Ramzan to appease their Christian brothers. Why are we ashamed of the word Christmas? Is it because we are ashamed of being identified as Christians? To those of us, who are embarrassed of being Christians, Jesus has a warning. In Matt. 10:32, He says that in the presence of His Father He will not acknowledge those who are ashamed of Him, in the eyes of men. The Master never makes empty threats. Do we hear the alarm bell?


      
We are Christians, but will not attend Church Services. A Christian young man I know tells me that he goes to Sunday morning service only when there are no good movies on TV. Some offer an excuse for their non-Christian attitude. They say that they are scandalized by the behavior of some Pastor/Priest and dissociate themselves from anything Christian. Are we Christian because of some Priest/Pastor, or even because of the Pope? We are Christian because of Christ, who is sinless and blameless. Do we stop using our family name or stay disconnected because of some black sheep in the fold? We refer to Biblical Stories as Christian Legends to distance ourselves from their veracity. We are Christians who do not want to profess Christian beliefs. Do we not profess our political affiliations? Democrat or Republican (USA), Labor or Conservative (UK), Congress or BJP (India)? We join elite clubs and are proud of our membership. We work for Fortune 500 Companies and will let others know of the connection. But Christ, the Son of God, we leave out in the cold. We exclude Him from our network. Alone, He will hang on that cross.
      
We try to run away from Him, but He comes panting after us, as The Hound of Heaven, whom Francis Thompson faithfully portrayed. In an unhurrying chase, at an unperturbed pace, He will not give up following us. Gently, He reminds us, all things betray thee, who betrayest me. We try to hide from Him, but He will seek us out. We shut our ears to His words, but He will play music that we cannot silence. We close our eyes to Him, but He will tenderly lift our hands off them, to lovingly gaze into our troubled eyes. What a Christ we have! Yet, we are ashamed of acknowledging Him. Would we do to our friends, what we do to Him, the truest of all?

 In my reckoning there are a few reasons why we behave the way we do.

1) We are the instant people who demand instant gratification. We want Him to be the genie we can command. He would willingly oblige us, if only all our wishes were for our good. Often, we desire that which will harm us. He sees it; we don’t. So, He shuts some doors through which we wish to enter and opens new doors, if only we have eyes to see.



2) We want to be in control, to march to our drumbeat. To surrender, to submit are against our grain. We like to be in charge of our lives; and extend that power by taking control of Him. The paradox is that He does not want to control us. He will not place limits on His gift of free will. Of our own, if we love Him and seek His protection, He will accept our friendship, and not a forced alliance.

3) We mistake His goodness for weakness, because He does not react even when we act in defiance or choose to ignore Him. His Infinite Patience and Forgiveness are never tested. For that very reason, we tend to take Him for granted.

4) We enthrone false gods in our hearts. Wealth, power, fame and pleasure are some of the deities we enshrine, dislodging the rightful owner. Does He complain? No, He waits for the time we will turn away from those false gods and return to Him, like the Prodigal son. In a question that also holds the answer, Job asks: Has anyone resisted Him and found peace? No wonder, the scholarly Saint Augustine wrote: Our hearts were made for you, O God, and they shall not rest until they rest in you.
      
Mistakenly we believe that we are doing Him a favor when we pray or live a life by The Book. Hugh Blair exposes our folly: It is for the sake of man, not of God, that worship and prayer are required; not that God may be rendered more glorious, but that man may be made better. We need to reflect on Hugh Blair's words, because a Perfect God needs nothing from us. He would not be God if He needed anything from us. He is complete in all respects. With unmatched love He persuades us to reform for our sakes, not His.

      How do we reform? By being the salt of the earth, and light to the world. Salt dissolves in food to lend it taste and flavor. Light dispels darkness. Like salt, when we make ourselves useful to others, and as shining examples, when we shed light for others, we become lovable. And when we become lovable, we can be sure that Jesus’ love is in us. Aptly, Bishop Fulton Sheen explains what that means: When the Lord puts His love in us, then we become lovable.

      There is no doubt that it is tough to follow Christ, but the rewards far outweigh the effort, and the peace that comes from it cannot be matched. Ordinary people have done it. Are we any less?