Forget Karma: God is Watching (1 Samuel 26:23)


If the Lord gave you what you really deserved, would you be ready for it? Would you look forward to it with joy or does the thought frighten you? What we fail to recognize is that it is not just a hypothetical question. 

The Lord render to every man his righteousness and his faithfulness: (1 Samuel 26:23)

These were words spoken by David when he interacted with King Saul who sought to kill him. He knew that God was sovereign and would return upon men that which they have rendered to others. The same still holds true today. The New Testament describes the principle as sowing and reaping. What you sow, you will also reap. It may take some time before it arrives, but it is coming. Just like it takes all summer for apples to grow and ripen on a tree, it may take most of a person’s life before they reap what they sow, but be sure, they will reap.  

Much of this principle concerning sowing and reaping is in relation to how we treat other people. If we sow righteousness towards others, then we will get righteous treatment back, but if we sow wickedness then wickedness awaits us.

Some may ask, “What guideline could I follow that would aid me in sowing righteousness?” The answer would be to love your neighbor as yourself. (Matthew 22:39). If you allow your actions to be motivated by what is best for another person or make decisions that enable you to meet the needs of someone else instead of focusing on yourself, you will most consistently sow righteousness. This doesn’t require you to give all of your money to the poor or even to live a dejected life. It only requires you to start focusing on others instead of yourself. Give somebody recognition. Show patience and mercy, try looking at situations from the other person’s perspective or even take time to listen to people and their problems are opportunities that each of us have to sow righteousness. It will not cost you one penny, but it will be an investment worth millions of dollars.

For you, the world of people is a field ready for planting. What kind of seeds will you sow?

Is Depression a Sin?

Hurt and sorrow are not emotions that you can control and store away. When they are present, it is for reason. Some may suggest that you must turn yourself around or rise above the circumstances of your hurt and sorrow. This may seem correct and may be in part, but as a whole this thinking is in error.

God has given us a comforter and he is able to lift us out of hurt and sorrow or at the least give us joy intermingled with our hurt and sorrow. Sometimes our ability to rise out of sorrow or to experience his joy is limited by two conditions or circumstances. These conditions or circumstances are time and the ministering of truth by another person.

I have heard some say that we are to have joy in the midst of our circumstances. To this I somewhat agree, but recognize the joy may not be experienced right away, but only until after hurt and pain has followed its course.

To illustrate, imagine that a person is severely punched in the face leaving the victim wincing in extreme pain. Immediately afterwards, he was approached by a believer who points out the beautiful sunset and tries to get the victim to rejoice in the power and wonder of God. As you can guess, that most likely is not going to happen.

However after the initial pain begins to subside, the victim may be confused as to why he was rejected and wounded in such a manner and then as he looks to the sunset, lifts his heart to God and rejoices in the fact that he who created such beauty loves him and will always be with him. He eventually rejoiced in his hurt and sorrow, but only after hurt or sorrow followed its course. It is not that he would not rejoice in God, but that he could not at that time rejoice in God.

Another reason why some cannot rejoice in the midst of their hurt and sorrow is because the burden is greater than they can bear. The Lord has promised that he will not allow us to be tempted above that we are able to bear because at the same time he will provide a way of escape. For these individuals, the way of escape is truth.

However while being crushed under the heavy load of hurt and sorrow, the believer may not know the necessary truth needed to overcome or they may not recognize it. It is in these circumstances that other believers are instructed to bear the burden of others. Just as the Holy Spirit (parakletos) comes along side us for comfort, we are to come alongside other believers and help them bear of their burden. We can do this with empathy, love, patience and the sharing of truth that will encourage their heart and point them to the Lord. It is not a truth of telling them what they need to do, but a truth of God upon which their faith can cling. When this occurs, the Holy Spirit can continue to do his work and lift her heart from hurt and sorrow. Rejoicing will follow, but it will only be able to occur as a result of at least one person ministering to another.

Remember how those at Thessalonica were sorrowing over loved ones who have passed away? Did not the apostle Paul come alongside the believers and comfort them with the truth that one day they would be reunited and be together with the Lord? (1 Thessalonians 4:17-18)

Also, did not Paul recognize the man who was being swallowed up with excessive sorrow and experienced this because believers did not exercise the truth of forgiveness when he repented? (2 Corinthians 2:7)

Some may deem the person struggling in hurt and sorrow as being in sin and that their hurt and sorrow, which today we call depression is in fact sin. To say that the person struggling with deep hurt and sorrow is in sin could be a sin in itself. Instead of trying to label and identify people, let us first pray to God and ask him to use us to bring truth to those who for the time being are struggling with hurt and sorrow so that their faith may cling to this truth and bring the comfort in the midst of their hurt and sorrow.

Fainted and Scattered (Matthew 9:36)

It is not difficult for anyone to see that the lives of so many people today are just a mess. How did they get this way? Why don’t they just get it together and do whatever needs to be done?

But when he saw the multitudes, he was moved with compassion on them, because they fainted, and were scattered abroad, as sheep having no shepherd. (Matthew 9:36)

From this passage, it appears that people become weak in life’s struggle and instead of continuing to fight on, they relax their resistance and faint. When this occurs, the person’s life then becomes subject to the problems and trials of life. Their lives get tossed about from side to side being cast about and cast down. This does not occur as a result of the weakness of the individual, because none of us have the ability to stand against the enemy. This occurs because of the absence of a shepherd in the person’s life. Sometimes there is not a shepherd because salvation has not yet been experienced, but other times it is because the person becomes estranged from their shepherd savior. Whether it be by confusion of doctrine, ill treatment from those in the body of Christ, person hurts and losses or sin: the separation occurs.

Today there are countless believers tossed about. They are away from their shepherd and the way to bring them back into the fold is to love them back. Bearing their burdens (Galatians 6:2) is the act of you bringing your strength to those who are weak until they can once again gain the strength for living that can only come from their shepherd.

Ministering to Others (Genesis 40:2-3)


You find yourself in the midst of your trial. You may be at the doctor’s office, sitting in the corridors of a court house or holding a notice that knocks the wind out of your sails. In any event, you are trapped without any perceivable way of escape.It is important to remember that while you are in the midst of your trial or struggle, God will bring people to you for the purpose of you ministering to them.  

And Pharaoh was wroth against two of his officers, against the chief of the butlers, and against the chief of the bakers. And he put them in ward in the house of the captain of the guard, into the prison, the place where Joseph was bound. (Genesis 40:2-3)

It may be a coworker, whose world is falling part, who comes to you and shares his burden. You may walk into a room and find a friend grieving or the Lord may point out the countenance change in an individual . But regardless of how the event occurs, God will bring people to you and he wants to use you to make a difference in their lives.
It doesn’t take a spiritual giant to be a minister to others. It only takes a person who has experienced the presence of God and it is those individuals that the Lord will use to point people to him. So, while you endure with longsuffering, keep your eyes focused on the Lord and be prepared to share what he has done for you.

How Can I Help (Psalm 142:3)



The Psalmist had a distorted view of God.  Even though God was his source of hope and trust, he believed that his way was only revealed to God after he became overwhelmed.  

When my spirit was overwhelmed within me, then thou knewest my path. In the way wherein I walked have they privily laid a snare for me. (Psalms 142:3)

What his words failed to reveal is the belief that God knows the end from the beginning.  Before God created the heavens and the earth, he knew each step that the psalmist would take in his life and for every situation.  What can we do to help people like him?

The psalmist was overwhelmed because of the circumstance that surrounded him.  From his word, we can learn what a believer experiences and what we can do to help him.

There are six key words or phrases in this passage which are important for understand what he is experiencing and how to provide help.

Know – to scrutinize

Cared – to seek or ask, make inquest

Refuge – way to flee

Portion – inheritance

Brought very low – bring down, pull down push down

Prison – shutting up, fastener

The psalmist was stating that he was overwhelmed because nobody scrutinized the situations in his life.  They did not ask or seek about his condition nor did they provide a way of escape.  He felt alone, pushed down and shut up in that place.

What can we do?  We can observe people and ask the Lord to reveal to us the trials and difficulties that they are facing.  We can overcome our fears and reach out to them by speaking to them and asking questions directed at their needs.  When we understand what they are facing and how they feel, we can point them to God, who is their refuge and strengthen them in the understanding their right to claim God and his provision of refuge as their own.  Pray together with them and then continue on your own in your private prayers.

Have Mercy (Psa 94:18)



When people interact together, it is only a matter of time before some type of conflict will wise.  When the interaction involves one person trying to instruct or mentor another, the chances of it occurring increase.

There is nothing more frustrating than trying to lead someone who continually struggles to either keep up or perform as expected.  So, what should our response be?

When I said, My foot slippeth; thy mercy, O Lord, held me up. (Psalms 94:18)

As we strive to trust God and walk in his ways, how does he respond when we falter?  He doesn’t attack or pound us down, but instead holds us up by his mercy.

When people are struggling, our response toward them should be the same.  We should respond with mercy.  There is a difference between struggling and refusing.  When people struggle, they are striving to accomplish or perform as expected, but yet still need support.  We love it when people show mercy towards us and especially when we receive it from God.  His dealings with us are a pattern or model for us to follow.

Patience is still a virtue.  So at work, be patient and show mercy.  As you raise your children, remember mercy.  Mercy is like a fertilizer.  When it is used correctly, it will enhance the growth of your relationships.  Without mercy, relationships can die.  If you want to make a great difference by helping people, you need to exercise mercy.

What Is There to Declare? (1 John 1:1-3)



From the beginning of our salvation until now, we have heard the Lord and even seen him evident in our lives.  What is it that you have seen?  How many answered prayers have there been?  How many times has the Lord spoken to you through the scriptures.  On how many occasions has he guided you in your decisions?  Honestly speaking, we probably cannot number these occasions.  What I believe to be the best interactions with the Lord are when he encourages us.  He picks us up when we fall.  He mends our hearts when they become broken and encourages us as we live in this fallen world.  All of these instances are part of our fellowship with him and the fellowship continues as we lift our hearts to him and offer praise, thanksgiving and adoration.

As the apostles, we have a responsibility with this fellowship and that is to share it with others so that they too may fellowship with God.  We owe this responsibility to our brothers and sisters in Christ.  By doing so, we lead them from where they are in their fellowship and relationship with God to where we are.  It is the mature believer teaching the younger.

That which we have seen and heard declare we unto you, that ye also may have fellowship with us: and truly our fellowship is with the Father, and with his Son Jesus Christ. (1 John 1:3)

With these thoughts, we must ask ourselves a few questions.  Have I been having fellowship with the Lord?  We know that we have in the past, but in recent days has there been fellowship?  If you were to share a fellowship experience with someone, how far back would you need to reach?

Another question would be: have I shared my fellowship experiences with others?  Our lives are like plants bearing fruit and seed.  The fruit of the Spirit is what our lives should produce because of fellowship and the seed within the fruit comes from us sharing our fellowship experiences with others.

So, what should we do with this fellowship?  Share it at work.  Share it at home: even blog it on the media, but whatever you do, share it.  By doing so, others may begin to experience the wonderful relationship with God that he so longs to have with them.