Monday, January 29, 2018

Why I Really Stopped My Church Fast

“New year new me”. That’s what many of us have in mind when starting out the New Year. Putting our New Year resolutions together, and buckling down on our goals. For many Christians, we start the new year out with a good fast to set the tone for our flesh. 

As we read in the Bible, a fast is created for us to draw closer to God, and away from distractions. Many people in the Bible fasted, but Jesus is always my primary example. Jesus fasted for 40 days and 40 nights, sacrificing what pleases his stomach to please our Father. A fast is all about sacrifice. Giving up that which we enjoy, as an offering to show our seriousness and love towards God. Without sacrifice, it's not truly a fast.
There is power in fasting. Such a power, that Jesus even advised that somethings could only be done through this kind of devotion (Mark 9:29).

With all this being said, my church asked everyone to do a “raw” fast. Yeah, this would be relatively similar to the “Daniel fast”. Only thing we were challenged to discipline ourselves to eat was raw foods. Fruit, veggies, nuts....etc. Nothing cooked.

I found out about the church fast the day before the new year. I honestly didn’t have it in mind to do a fast, so this church fast took me by surprise. I usually try to mentally prepare myself whenever I’m about to fast, because I like food lol. Then, I’ve never done a raw fast before, but I was up for the challenge. But when I started to think about my job (I’m a fire fighter and we work 24 hr shifts), I begin to think about how we don’t get proper sleep sometimes, and our bodies are all over the place. From mentally fatigued with something like a cardiac arrest, to physically fatigued with a fire or training - Yes, we do more than get cats out of trees lol.

I had my mind set that I wanted to fast with my church, but I didn’t think that the raw fast would be a good idea. So I decided to just do a “vegetarian fast” on the days I work, and a regular fast (no food) for 1 day I’m off a week (we work 1 to 3).

As a couple weeks had went by in the fast, I begin to see that everything was staying the same. My everyday routine was staying the same; the only thing that changed was my meal regimen. I begin to see that this “fast” wasn’t focused around God, it was more focused around what to eat and not eat.

This should never be so. A fast should be solely focused and centered around Christ. Sacrificing our fleshly satisfactions, and replacing them with devotion. Although we discipline ourselves of certain foods (if any), the meal plan should never be the main focus. Which is what I did. So, I stopped my fast because this fast wasn’t a fast at all. It was just a diet.

See, the key difference between a diet and a fast is this: A diet is more designed to change the outside. Self. A fast is designed to strengthen the inside. Christ. If our focus isn’t Christ, it’s gonna be about losing weight, looking good, keeping up with the church folks...etc. Flesh. God desires us to sacrifice our flesh for Him. And God showed me this in my fake fast. Lol. But this wasn’t just for me; He wanted me to share this with everyone with an ear.

Thursday, April 13, 2017

Men, Your Virginity Matters Too!

Why is it that a woman's virginity seems to be so important; but when it comes to men, the topic of sex seems to be a bit different?

One of the greatest differences that I noticed before I became a Christian, was that men were praised for having sex with multiple women, while women were deemed to be whores if they have sex with more than one person. The same distinctions were there when it came to virginity also. If a woman was found to be a virgin, it was praised; but if a guy was found to be a virgin, he was usually shunned. 

Why does virginity matter?

Our virginity matters because it's one of the most sacred things that you could give to someone. God desires for us to honor him with our purity, and that goes for men and women. Although it seems to be rare for a man to save himself for marriage, I know many men that were strong enough to wait. They didn't give into the manipulation of "being a man" or "getting some hair on your face". These men understood the value of their virginity, and didn't want to give it to just anyone.

Honoring God with our bodies is one of the most challenging things for us to do. Simply because it's easy not to, and the temptation can be so strong in this perverted society. Sexuality is promoted on the television, in the music, and sadly, even in some churches. But a man that's after Gods own heart, seeks to please God more than a sexual pleasure.

Everyone don't deserve your virginity!

Yes men! Regardless how fine she is, how popular she is, and how many guys are want her, your purity and reverence towards God matters more. If she isn't your wife, she don't deserve the benefits of a wife. Your wife would rather you share that special moment with her, rather than with a random. Men, if she's that easy there's a reason why she is anyway lol. Don't fall into the trap of peer pressure and peer neglection. Never worry so much about what people think, that you're willing to lower your standard just to avoid peer neglection. God loves you so much that he will bring men around that will encourage you, and build you up on the path that he created you to be on.

You don't need practice!

People may try to persuade you that you need practice. That's a lie from satan. When you get married, you will get all the practice you need. And not only will God bless you with performance, but he will bless you with stamina also. God truly honors you when you honor him. Many of those sexual issues can stem from our lustful pasts. From pornography to fornication, that stuff can taint our sexual experiences. 

Men, your virginity matters. Never let anyone tell you differently. Never let your manhood or security come from what people think, but instead let it come from what God knows. He created us, so he knows what's best!

Wednesday, January 25, 2017

Slaves to the Spirit of Competition

One of the worst bondages that a Christian can be in, is that of competition.
Competing against unbelievers, believers, friends, and family. Feeling like one has to out-do another, to make themselves feel secure or have a sense of purpose. One that struggles in this area, will usually struggle with self confidence, and not truly understanding their worth in Christ.

The spirit of competition stems from an insecurity

It causes one to be jealous of another persons success, achievements, looks, personality, or anything someone else has that we believe we don't have. It makes you always feel like you have to one-up everyone. Meaning, every time someone posts a picture with their boo, you feel like you have to out-do, or keep up with them to stay relevant. So you try to get your boo to take a picture with you, and they don't even like taking pictures; so you're sitting there looking crazy on the inside. Spirit of competition.

One of the silliest places I see this competing spirit is in marriages. Husbands competing with wives, and wives competing with the husbands. It's so silly because they're supposed to be on the same team. When it pertains to the woman, she highly values the attention and applauds of people greater than the attention and applauds of her husband. She may have feel like she lacked value for so long, that the affirmation of people became a norm in her heart. Insecurity. So, if her husband begin to get a little attention, she feels the need to always one-up him, because it steals attention from her.

On the other hand, you have the husbands competing with their wives. From his wife making more money than him, to his wife getting more likes on social media than him. Insecurity births the spirit of competition. Whenever a man feels threatened by his wife, he will often fight against her. He will get easily angered, and even discourage her in good works. He's fights against her, instead of winning with her. 

We also see this spirit in operation inside of the church. 

Especially during offering time. Offering time turns into a modeling runway. It's pretty sad. People not wanting to go to church on Sunday because "they don't have anything to wear" (AKA they don't have a new outfit to out-do someone). These things definitely shouldn't be inside the church. People should come with what they have, and we shouldn't we whispering/gossiping about what someone has on when they walk by. Our outward appearance should not be the object of our conversations. We should be governed by modesty, not being the most trendy anyway. 

Preachers also competing with other preachers trying to sound the best. Being scared to go behind other preachers in conferences, because the first preacher is a talented speaker. It's competition. True Godly men are on the same team. They aren't trying to sound or appear "the best". Or more anointed. Their intentions are to promote Christ, not themselves.

Comparison Breeds Competition

One of the popular questions I get is: Why does it seem that unbelievers seem to be more blessed than believers? I first try to see where they get their definition of "blessed" from. Because if one define "blessed" by financial gain, then they are heavily deceived. And honestly, some of the most wealthiest of people are some of the most suicidal. Because they find their worth and value in their bank accounts. So when wealth is taken away, their identity is lost and they see no value in life. This shouldn't be so with the believer. Our identity should be in Christ, and in Him alone should our confidence rest. Security.

When we compare what we have to what others have, it breeds a need to evaluate what we have by what others have. We will begin to envy what someone else may have, and this ultimately gives way to discontentment. Especially on social media. I call it the highlight reel, because that's all it is. People will only post their best on social media, and we have a tendency to compare our worst to their best. This comparison causes us to compete within ourselves; unrealistically comparing what we have to this perfect idea of what we think others have.    

This competition spirit is real, and many of us are slaves to it. We will only be free from this bondage when we totally accept our identity in Christ. Not living to prove our haters wrong, but living solely to prove God right. 

Thursday, October 20, 2016

3 things a Christian woman shouldn't have to say to turn a man down

Sometimes it can be very challenging for Christian single men and women to connect with other single Christians. Women often have an idea in their minds of how they want a man to approach them. Whether it's by the skies opening up and a light from God shining down on "The One", or someone simply introducing a man to you. We so often have unrealistic expectations on this "encounter". In actuality it rarely, if at all, happens the way that we plan it to happen. God is such an awesome and creative creator. He thought are so often not like ours.

I'm a firm believer in God bringing someone across your path, and two people coming together organically by God. No shining lights, no skies opening, and nothing spooky spiritual; but 100% of God. Not saying that God can't open the skies and shine a light on someone; because at the end of the day he's still God. But let's align our expectations on the faith aspects in our lives, and not the physical.

I'm a happily married man now, but that process of singleness was not easy or clear you can probably see in one of my previous blog posts about me being single 7 years. I heard the processes that God took others on, and I was wondering if it was gonna happen with me the same way. It didn't.

In my time of singleness, I experienced a plethora of turn downs. Some harsh, some deep for no reason, and some funny. Most of the deep for no reason ones were funny. All of the examples I list either happened to me or someone else. But, here's my list of 3 things a Christian woman don't have to say to turn a man down:

1. Let's just be friends first, and see where it goes.

On the surface, you may say this is a great statement to make. Which is partially true. But when this statement is made just to give someone a false hope, it's better left unsaid. A person usually knows when they're feeling led to pursue something with someone or not. There's a peace about it. But you don't have to give this false hope, to turn a man down.

2. God didn't tell me you're the one.

First, I'd like to say it's not that deep. You don't have to make ourselves be deep when we don't have to. Many times we're either not attracted to someone, or they don't satisfy some desire we have. Whether they don't "look like money", have money, or they don't have the shape or figure that we want. When this person doesn't don't meet these things, that feeling that we call "God", is just some of our unmet expectations. It's not that deep. So, don't drown for nothing.

3. Let me pray about it.

Again, on the surface you may say this is a great statement to make. Which is partially true. But usually, you're not attracted to this person, but you're trying to create something so you don't "miss out on your blessing". Some would pose the question, "Do you have to be physically attracted to the person?" The answer is YES, if you want to be physically attracted to the person. Read that again if you didn't catch that. Many Christians now-a-days are seeking something so deep, that they'll miss the simplicity of how God is trying to work.

What ever happened to just saying, "I'm not interested"? No, that might be a little to regular for some of us. I say this to many people that I talk to about relationships, it is very rare that something extraordinary or super spiritual happens for people to get together. Can God literally tell someone that they're "The one"? Yes, but most of the time things are really REGULAR. But it's our responsibility to keep the standard of God at the forefront of the process.

We don't have to make super spiritual or rude statements to turn a man down that you aren't interested in. Just tell him you're not interested. Most guys should get the point. You also never have to tear a man down to turn him down either. We should still show the standard of God, even when we have to get firm with people. 

As long as you are hungering after God and you are focused on doing his will, you will never miss your blessing. God will give you peace concerning your mate, and it don't have to be that deep. You'll just feel peace about pursuing something with them. If we trust God to put it together, it will stay together.

Wednesday, August 24, 2016

A Christian Mans Wondering Eyes

Before you read this, please read the entire article so you can have a better understanding of the point of it all.

It's a general consensus that men are visual creatures. Men have the tendency to base many things by the looks of them; especially when it comes to women. It doesn't have be in a sexual sense, but sometimes men judge their approach by the appearance. I know this may sound mean or rude, but it's honest. It doesn't go for all men, but many men do fall under this category.

Before I was a follower of Christ, I was all about hooking up with "fine" woman. I didn't care too much about her personality, I just wanted to be with someone I was physically attracted to. Of course, I didn't want a "crazy" woman, but looks was about 80% of what I wanted in a woman. It was my main focus.

What is "fine"?

I had different categories of attractiveness. I had cute, pretty, fine, bad, and beautiful. Cute was when I thought someone was pretty that was too young for me. That was my way of saying, "If she was older, I would date her". If I called a woman Pretty, I was mainly referring to her having a pretty face or smile. If I called a woman Fine, I often referred to her having a nice shape (some men focus on certain areas of the shape); but didn't really pay much attention to her face. Shallow, I know. Just being honest on how the thought process was. When a woman was Bad, I thought she had a really pretty face, and a nice shape as well. But when I thought a woman was Beautiful, she had the pretty face, nice shape, and was also mentally attractive. I really don't think I've ever called a woman beautiful until I got married#HusbandPoints

I explained that for you to understand how many men think. And just because a man gives his life to God, that stuff doesn't just turn off. Please understand that. We still notice when a woman is physically attractive. But, now we have a greater responsibility. We have to learn to discipline our eyes, guard our hearts, and allow our perspective to mature and be more like Christ.


When we are of the world, we often think and carry ourselves in a reckless manner. We could stare a woman's butt down, and maybe even whistle at her. We don't really care about anything, but one thing. Sex. When our minds are renewed and Christ comes in, we have to be more mindful of the perspective that we have for our sisters. We grow out of the mindset of viewing woman as sex toys, and begin to view them with purity as God's daughters.

It takes a real conversion in Christ to even have the desire to mature from our old mindsets. And even when we have that desire to mature, it is very challenging. The culture that we live in can make it very hard for a man to be single eyed. Culture teaches, "The better your body looks, the more you show it off." While God is trying to teach us, "the better your body looks, the more mindful you should be about what you wear." Modesty.

Should a man look at a woman's butt when she walk by?

Being a man that tries to discipline his eyes, sometimes it still catches you off guard. To be honest, I actually see women checking other women out just as much as the guys lol. I'm sure you all have your reasons (or excuses lol) of why you do that and how "it's different", but any who.... Sometimes what a woman wears can catch a man off guard. Let's think about it.... If you are somewhere minding your own business, and a woman with more shapes than a kindergarten math class walks by with a shirt cut so low that it shows everything from her chest to her navel, and shorts so short that her booty is hanging out of them, it would be kind of hard not to initially notice that. Even if it's nasty, you'll still notice it.

On the flip side, sometimes it may not catch some men off guard, they just aren't disciplined in that area...and don't care to be disciplined. I would question this persons heart to please God. Honestly, some men don't try to be disrespectful, they just have trouble disciplining their eyes. Not making excuses for them! It's just the truth. It may be stemmed from lust in some cases, and other cases it could just stem from years of foolishness.

What do we do about it?!

We discipline ourselves. I really don't think we can help the first glance. Sometimes the things that men and women wear in this sex driven culture just catches our attention. But as Christians, we all have a responsibility to practice not entertaining lusts. I understand that we don't always look upon a person and want to have sex with them. But it's about avoiding the appearance of evil, or even entertaining thoughts that could lead to lust also.

It's important that we leave those movies and music alone that entertains our lustful fleshThe more we negotiate with our flesh, the higher the price will be to kill it. Those music and movies may seem like something small, but they are weights. And they will easily beset us. So lay those things aside.

Men, let's do our part by continuing to discipline our eyes. If that means not going to the gym until you are stronger, so be it. Because the devil know he be in there to tempt you. Let's also be mindful of others, and lead in the area of modesty. We can't complain about women being immodest, when we trying to show our bird chests off.

Women, let's not allow society to define our "fashion" or beauty. Understand that your worth is not in the number of likes and positive comments on social media. Your worth is defined by the One whom created you. Christ.

God bless you all.

Friday, August 12, 2016

My Church Leadership Offended Me!

I often have the chance to talk with different people that leave churches because they were let down by the pastor, they didn't feel welcomed by one of the ushers, or they just flat-out felt like the leadership shouldn't have done "that". While this may in fact be true, I want to give a perspective that we don't often think about.

Being a follower of Jesus Christ, it's important that we surround ourselves with likeminded people. While surrounding ourselves with other believers in fellowship, even those brothers or sister may offend or sin against us. But what happens when someone of leadership offends us, or sins against us? What do we do then? Do we just leave? Or do we just stay...and be bitter? I would say neither. There is two different issues that I just named, "Just leaving" or "Just staying and being bitter". If you "just leave" it is bound to follow to wherever you go next. And if you "just stay and be bitter", you will ultimately sow discord, bitterness, and gossip to everyone around you. Which will destroy everything. No one wants that.

Gods grace?

Leadership offending us seems to be a little different than a regular member offending us, huh? This is the person we learn from and spiritually respect, right? It is very important to remember that while a leader is in a position of authority, that does not mean that they are flawless or infallible. They are just as human as us, and every other person that needed Gods grace in the bible. Yes, I understand that he has a great impact in the lives of those that he ministers to, maybe even your life, but that does not mean that he will never mess up or miss the mark. It's unfair and unbiblical to have this train of thought. 

James 3:1 "Not many of you should become teachers, my fellow believers, because you know that we who teach will be judged more strictly."

This explains to us how teachers of the Gospel will be judged more strictly in the day of judgment, but that still doesn't mean we should hold them to the "righteousness" of Jesus. There's a balance that we must have. Honestly, in the culture that we live in, the more involved a leader is, the greater the possibility of something happening that will offend someone. Doesn't have to be sin, could just be a character flaw or differentiation. And with that, sadly, familiarity could cause lack of respect in their leadership. And at the point, things could get a little more complicated. Am I saying that a leader should not hang around people that aren't leaders? Of course not lol. I'm saying that we must understand and have that balance.

Gotta have balance.

Sometimes it can be difficult for a Christian to understand the balance of a leaders humanness and their leadership. If offended, it would be natural to think that it must be us that did something wrong, when in actuality leaders aren't perfect. They can sin or make mistakes just like every other human on this earth. But hopefully, they don't want to practice sin nor want to have a negative impact in the lives of others. If so, I wouldn't believe that they're not a leader that God placed there. 

So, we ask ourselves how do we handle conflicts?

Matthew 18:15 "If your brother or sister sins, go and point out their fault, just between the two of you. If they listen to you, you have won them over. But if they will not listen, take one or two others along, so that every matter may be established by the testimony of two or three witnesses.

Leviticus 19:17-18 "You shall not hate your brother in your heart, but you shall reason with your neighbor, lest you incur sin because of him. You shall not take vengeance or bear a grudge against the sons of your own people, but you shall love your neighbor as yourself, I am the Lord."

What really is the issue?

Take some time to re-evaluate the issue at hand. See what the issue really is. Is this issue really from what the leader did to us, or did it just trigger something in us from a past hurt? Reading Gods word and taking time to pray is really important in truly finding the root of the issue. Maybe you could write down what's making you upset, and pray on what you wrote down. Make sure that you aren't praying out of bitterness or spite, but sincerely praying for His will and clarity. Our focus must be on a solution, not just to build on and exploit the problem.

Don't let this dilute your relationship with God!

NEVER let a problem with a human disrupt your relationship with God. Just because a person in leadership, or anyone within the church body, does harm or wrong in your understanding, never blame God. It's probably not God nor the devil that is making this happen. It is probably the leader failing a test of temptation, or maybe it's just our perception...depending on the issue. But it is VERY important in this time to seek God for wisdom, humility, and right standing in order to address these issues. We literally need God to show us the direction, and give us peace and support in finding a solution to issues.


One other thing that we should also do is get guidance. Not guidance for a bias, messy, or gossiping friend, but guidance from someone whom you trust will sincerely want to help. This is also something that you must pray upon. 

Proverbs 20:18 "Prepare plans by consultation, and make war by wise guidance.

Proverbs 24:5-6 "A wise man is strong, and a man of knowledge increases power. For by wise guidance you will wage war, and in abundance of counselors there is victory.

Proverbs 11:14 "Where there is no guidance, the people fall, but in abundance of counselors there is victory.

One of the greatest benefits of receiving advice from someone else (that's not bias) is that it provides a different perspective. It can reveal things that you might not have thought about, and it also might even help you understand your perspective better. Advice is not a bad thing. But I'm sure one may ask, is seeking advice about an issue gossip? Gossip is a matter of the heart and the intent. If the intent of sharing the issues is to just vent, and show other people how wrong someone is, then thats gossip. But if the heart and intent is to sincerely try to come up with a way to solve the issue, it is not gossip. Just make sure that they person that you talk to isn't a gossiper.

Humility is important!!

Humility is the greatest approach. To anything! Especially issues. Humility, allows you to actually focus on the issue at hand, and not trying to prove your point to be right. Whenever a person approaches an issue in a prideful manner, that person is not open to understanding the truth regarding the issue. They will be stubborn in their ways, and they will never reach a solution that is contrary to their own thinking. Even if their thinking is wrong. We must give the benefit of the doubt; just as we would want someone to give to us.


Okay, let's look at it. You have gotten a better grip on the issue, got some godly advice from a reliable source, NOT GOSSIPED, spent some time with God, cooled your emotions off, humbled down, NOW, it's time to talk with the person that offended you.

Hopefully you are able to meet this person face to face, that's always better. Can be intimidating to some, but it is the best way to address issues. Of course, it's not always possible, but it is best. When you meet face to face, you may have wrote things down at home to bring up, but try to be as natural as you can. Be very honest, and try not to over or under-exaggerate. Be truthful and honest, in a humble spirit. Even if the other person isn't.

This talk is to bring understanding and unity, not to singlehandedly vent frustrations and prove how wrong one is. Be very gracious, loving, and ultimately forgiving. Don't let anger and wrath creep up on you while you explain your point of view. You want to always maintain the spirit of humility, and mind of understanding. This is achieved through listening, and being open to a different point of view. Being offended by anyone, especially leadership, isn't easy. But there is a way to approach an issue without causing strife or malice. Let's continue to seek God, and allow His perfect wisdom to lead us in our steps to address and move forward.

Hopefully the issue at hand gets resolved, and God gets the victory!

Friday, October 30, 2015

Why Halloween Isn't For Me

When I was a kid, there was nothing like some good ol' horror movies and being scared to go to sleep at night. I remember watching Chucky, and thinking everyone of my sister's baby dolls would become real when I closed my eyes. Horror movies terrified me, but it was like I didn't like it; but I liked it. Weird, I know!

There were other type scary movies that I watched also. These were the movies of people being demon possessed, making crazy faces, and things moving when no one was in the room. Now, those movies were the scariest ones to me; probably because they always talked about demons in church. These movies created me to have a fear of demons as a child. I believe that's one of the tricks that the devil wants to use for us as Christians to fear what we should have dominion over through the power of God. Nevertheless, I still watched them.

As a child, my mom was pretty protective over us. It wasn't a super crazy protective, but she was really protective over the things she allowed us to do. Sometimes she didn't like the thought of somethings, but we would cry so much that should would allow us to do them. SOMETIMES. When it came to Halloween, my mom didn't really want us to go trick-or-treating, but we would cry and tell her how all of our other friends would be going. But she still didn't let us go. She would tell us that it wasn't a day that we should celebrate. She also didn't want us to go walking through our neighborhood that late by ourselves. But after some time, she started to let us go with our cousins. after about 2 years later, that ended also. This is when we started to go to "trunk-or-treat" at church. It was supposed to be the alternative to trick-or-treating. My siblings and I thought it was lame. But they had free candy, so we went.

So, the question is, Why Not Celebrate Halloween?

Honestly, I don't have a deep answer for you. I just believe it's one of the most demonic days that one can celebrate. Of course, I did research the day in which it originated, but it didn't take that for me to see that this isn't a day that I should celebrate or participate in. It's the celebration of demons, witches, warlocks, false identity, and darkness. I'm a child of the light, no need to play in darkness (my version of Thessalonians 5:5). Many would say that it's just an innocent day, but I don't quite see it that way. There are many demonic things that happen on that day, that many people aren't even aware of. I believe the real danger of this day is more spiritual than physical. I choose to opt out. Many would say, "Doesn't the kids need an alternative?" Why do we need an alternative? Why do the church feel like it has to compete or stay relevant to the world on that day?

"Then what about Thanksgiving and Christmas?" What about them? Thanksgiving and Christmas isn't HALLOWEEN! People ask me this because they think I have an issue with "holidays". While I don't really care for holidays, I don't believe they all are as demonic as Halloween. Of course, here comes the pagan debates. But my issue isn't necessarily with holidays, but with the darkness of that holiday. I thank God for the convictions that he places in our spirit, because he's never wrong.

Halloween isn't for me. Not because it's pagan, but because it's demonic. I'd rather eat strawberry cheesecake.