Recent Blog Entries

  • Intentional Growth 2 (Prayer) from Refreshing Hope Ministries on Vimeo. The Sermon on the Mount that Jesus gave is a goldmine of information. It is like the beating heart of my Bible. It spans 3 chapters, Matthew 5 through 7. I created a playlist of it and put it on repeat to listen to it all day...
  • Feb 28
    Posted by Dion Todd
    A man's steps are established by Yahweh. He delights in his way. Though he stumble, he shall not fall, for Yahweh holds him up with his hand. I have been young, and now am old, yet I have not seen the righteous forsaken, nor his children begging for bread. All day long he deals graciously, and lends...
  • Feb 27
    Posted by Dion Todd
    The world is passing away with its lusts, but he who does God's will remains forever. 1 John 2:17 WEB.It was my first day of school at Kingston Elementary. Early that morning, my stepmother pulled up to the school, pushed me out of her car, and drove off. Standing there alone in the parking lot, I f...
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The Other Side

  • Jonah 4:4: But the Lord replied, Have you any right to be angry?

    Luke 15:31-32: My son, the father said, you are always with me, and everything I have is yours. But we had to celebrate and be glad, because this brother of yours was dead and is alive again; he was lost and is found.

    Ever feel like the older brother in the parable of the prodigal son? or Jonah after the Father has compassion on the people of Ninaveh? I have. 

    Once we are in Jesus, our lives change, we become saved and free, and this is an amazing thing in our lives. The immediate change is so powerful and so filled with love that you explode with enjoyment. You just exude love to others. 

    Over time, we settle in to our place in the kingdom of God, and if we are not in constant communication with Him we can find ourselves as followers. Sometimes we get so good at following, that we start to follow the law instead of Jesus. We get so good in our minds that we focus on our behavior, and not Jesus. When that starts to happen, we turn to our  good deeds and works. We start to do things when we are asked to, and we start to help out at church. Sometimes so much that we can feel used. We will Do things that we never thought we would do, out of obligation and not out of joy and love. We start to find ourselves around others who are not saved, who may be doing things that we can find less than moral according to our standards. We start to forget where we came from and where God found us. 

    Pretty soon, we can start to grow calloused to who we once were and forget all about our imperfections before Christ. Our views can become judgmental towards others, and even worse, we can start to look at others as lost causes. Once that seed starts to grow in us, we can look at a mentality of us “versus” them, and then we are in constant conflict with people who have not yet tasted the glory of the salvation of the Lord. 

    When someone does something that we find deplorable and later says they are sorry, are we quick to forgive? or ready to condemn? I have been both the prodigal son and the older brother in the parable. 

    That is why it is so important to renew our minds daily. Look at our lives as the gift it is. We can start to realize that who we are is less important that who we have access to. The Lord is forever with us, and so we must with fresh eyes look to Him every day for all that we desire and need. He is willing to bless us with whatever He has when we build a relationship with Him. The reason the older son was angry was because he was so caught up in his working for his father, while his brother was a hot mess. That can be frustrating, but we have to constantly see ourselves in each and every person we meet. Forgiveness can start to become easier when we see our past mistakes in the lost and broken. We have the luxury of knowing our Father through Jesus, and they don't. That is certainly a daily gift that not everyone in this world has. When we have that stored deep within us, we can look at others not based on what they do or don't do, but rather, how much mercy God showed us all. 

    Regardless of whether or not others ever come to Jesus is not our decision. It is a daily decision to love, and to see ourselves loved by Him. When we feel that love, just the spill over to others is enough to show the glory of the Lord, and not our good deeds or our prohibition on things of this world. If we were able to be perfect, then Jesus would not have had to die to restore our right standing before our Father in heaven. 

    So the next time the Lord asks us to go to areas that are adverse to our current conduct, or asks us to rejoice over a repentant brother, remember that we all were in their shoes once before we Knew the salvation and the grace of our blessed savior Jesus Christ. 


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2 comments
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<i>Deleted Member</i>
Deleted Member Such a beautiful message of love and forgiveness. God bless you and I pray you Dad is doing better. 
February 22, 2016- Edit- Delete
  • 1
Jeffrey Smith
Jeffrey Smith Thanks you Tammy!! I can't thank you enough for your prayers!  Blessings to you!
February 22, 2016