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DEVOTIONAL WRITINGS

Music To My Ears

Throughout the book of Psalms there are many references to singing, dancing and shouting. In chapter 33 there are several commands listed to shout for joy, give thanks to the Lord, make melody, play skillfully and sing. This passage reminds me that God is the Creator, the designer and maker of all things including music. God’s love commands us not only to hope in Him but also to express that hope in a way that others can see and hear. It’s audible, loud and expressive. It’s good to know the heavens and earth also acknowledge the steadfast love of God. Waters and seas follow His commands and the breath of God is so powerful it causes all the earth to fear Him. God is not an out of sight, out of mind kind of God. There is no need to wonder about tracking His location. To put focus on a position is pointless. To the readers of this Psalm all that really matters is knowing God sees us, hears us, delivers and keeps us. This passage clearly tells us He looks down from heaven, He looks out and observes our deeds. We can hope in God and openly express it all because of God’s steadfast love. That is good news and what I call music to my ears.

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DEVOTIONAL WRITINGS

It’s Gettin Heated

Sometimes my coworker friends and I live on the edge at work. When things aren’t right we may get to snapping back at each other, honking the car horn at folks during our lunch ride to our favorite restaurant or negatively putting in our 2 cents on a hot topic subject of management, changes or policy. Sometime it feels good enough just to get it off our chest and tell the person who upset us exactly how we feel.  Other times it doesn’t feel that good. There’s nothing wrong with being direct and honest with others but I have learned two words for when we are easily offended and take things to personally.  Those words are simply this:  SLOW DOWN.  In order to live on pitch we must not be so quick to take offense.  It takes practice, but my friends and I are learning and pushing each other by asking the question out loud who or what are we attacking? When we slow down we are able to ask more important questions like how can we react without attacking? We can learn to slow down by not pretending or defending with harsh words, eye rolls and side eyes. A gentle reminder goes a long way. I thank God for those friends and co workers who help me strive to live on pitch. Work life can knock us off our feet and catch us off guard but God is our Helper. What are some warning signs that show up when you’re offended by others?

 

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Balance prayer Uncategorized

How To Make An Exit

Do you know how to make an exit?  We’ve heard of making an entrance but I am curious to know if you know how to properly make an exit.   How you leave says a lot about who you are and what you value.  On the airplane there is a row called the exit row.  You have a little more leg room in that row but you also have more responsibility that comes with that seat.  Some people make quick exits and other s take a while to leave.  Do you know how to exit a conversation loaded with gossip?  Do you know how to exit a conversation filled with negativity?  Do you know how to exit a restaurant serving unhealthy food when you’re watching what you eat?  Here are two ways to make an exit.

  1. Practice.  Like making an entrance you have to prepare for it.  You must do it. Get up and go. Shut up and leave.  Walk away silently or loudly.
  2. Pray. You have to pray about the decision you are making.  Ask yourself what do I value most?  What does God say about this situation?

Sometimes you have to say these words to yourself, I’m not staying here so you can move on.  How do you get unstuck?  You start verbally saying I’m not staying here.  I’m not doing the same thing over and over.  I’m not going to continue down the road of disappointment. I’m going to do better. You start walking in a different direction in your mind first. My prayer today is for us to live courageous lives and walk out in faith even when it seems hard to do so.

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DEVOTIONAL WRITINGS

Tone It Down

Warning: Sometimes the tone of frustration can lead to miscommunication.

Have you ever been so frustrated you don’t hear what someone is saying. Have you ever become tone deaf in communication with someone? It feels like the CD is scratched and you just can’t listen to it anymore. I have dealt with multiple challenges and communication issues for a few weeks and I am still learning whether I’m speaking a loving truth, or a hard truth I must be aware of my tone.

When I listen to music, if the tone is not right the whole song sounds off, it’s hard to listen and it becomes harsh to the ears. Sometimes we have to tone it down so everyone can hear. When we allow ourselves to hear how God speaks to us in scripture we find His tone always comforts when things are uncomfortable. We find encouragement when we are discouraged and peace in our storms.

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DEVOTIONAL WRITINGS

Stop Signs

You ever notice how stop signs are red, some have flashing lights and are meant to be obeyed and seen? Have you ever run through a stop sign perhaps because you didn’t really see it? Or maybe missed a stop on your journey? I was talking to a friend about how to live on pitch the other day and realized that I missed a few stop signs in my own life. I’ll admit I’m a busy person and I try to do everything but I’m learning to stop trying to do it all. Truth is I can’t do everything. God is the only one who can do everything, be everywhere, see and know everything. I had to stop and say to myself, I am not God. I must stop trying to do everything. Health issues become my stop signs when I try to do too much. Another thing I am learning is stop trying to do everything right. It’s all imperfect. Unless God puts His supernatural hands on it, blows divinely on it and blesses it nothing I do is to perfection. Good and perfect gifts come from above according to the Bible. Fear and procrastination become stop signs when I try to do it all so perfectly. I have to tell myself God will accept it as is. When we ignore the flashing lights and fail to see the stop signs in life accidents can happen, life can get overwhelming and nothing gets accomplished. We lose focus on the Master by ignoring the stop signs. What do you need to stop ignoring or doing to live more on pitch for God? I pray you will see the signs, the flashing lights in your life and start living today.

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DEVOTIONAL WRITINGS

Surrendering Thoughts and Prayers

My thoughts have been going sort of like this, I’ll have multiple “Lord have mercies” in one day and a whole lot of “Lord help” the next. This week has been extremely tough and it’s not quite over. I had to stop and just ask God’s help. Have you ever had to do that? Just stop. Ask God. Help Lord. Our help will surely come. I am a witness to it. When things are off pitch in your life just stop and ask God for help. We must learn to obey the stop signs in life and sometimes it can be hard to recognize them. Crazy situations and conversations, chaos and short fuses are all stop signs for me. I’m learning to ask God for help. I am sharing a portion of my personal prayer this week. I am sure God will hear us when we reach out and surrender all.

Lord help me surrender to you when everything seems to be going wrong and it looks like nothing is working out. Help me surrender to you when life gets busy and there’s not enough time to do the important tasks. Help me surrender to you when things and people just don’t make sense. Help me surrender to you when trouble comes, when the news is not good, grief strikes and fear stops me in my tracks. Help me surrender to you when I don’t understand how I’m going to make it through another week or another day. Lord help. I am confident that You Lord are my help.

The next time things start spinning around out of control just stop and ask God for help. He’s sure to be a very present help in your time of need.

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DEVOTIONAL WRITINGS

Ready To Step Up

I walked in a room for a meeting and we were all ready to go. I knew my role and was sure I could do it. The group leader asked me to take another role on because someone didn’t show up. I was surprised and a little bit anxious but I agreed and took a leap. I jumped in and stepped right up to help with a smooth meeting. I learned sometimes stepping up requires you to fill in a gap. It’s not always about taking over. Thank God for the people in your life who can fill in gaps. People who step up with a ready heart that say I can help you with that. Jesus was always stepping up and filling in gaps. Whether He was healing the sick, teaching the disciples, providing food to feed multitudes or noticing others in a crowd, Jesus was ready to step up. He even stepped up to a cross and filled in the gap between sin and salvation ultimately giving us the choice between eternal life and death. I am so grateful to know that when we are called upon to step up and serve others, God always has a unique way of filling in the gaps. We don’t have to take over because God is in control of everything.

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DEVOTIONAL WRITINGS

Serve or Be Served

Are you serving and encouraging? This thought crossed my mind and hit me hard. Jesus was a servant. He served notice on us and left his commandments, instructions and an example to follow. I recently visited a restaurant and the service was stellar, they paid attention from the moment I walked in. They greeted me with a smile and made sure I was satisfied. They made good suggestions and tended to my table effortlessly. They basically cared about my experience and it showed. I was well pleased. On the other hand I have been to restaurants where the service was not so stellar. I had to do most of the work like seat myself, ask for menus, utensils, condiments and water refills. I noticed the servers rarely checked in on their guests and did not attempt to show they cared about anyone. It was not an encouraging atmosphere. I’m sure they got served with less than in some of their gratuities. This experience reminded me of how I should follow God with more of a servant’s heart and attitude. Tend to the needs of others and encourage them. When we serve joyfully, cheerfully and faithfully with encouragement God is well pleased. Now that’s what I call living on pitch.

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DEVOTIONAL WRITINGS

Gifts & Givers

GivingIf you’re giving to get, I hope you get this lesson.  I learned a long time ago, giving is not about getting.  It’s all about trusting, believing and worshipping.  Giving is living,  so I worship God by giving a little more to Him each day.  You too can worship by giving. Try giving a moment of your time and help someone who is sick or lonely and feeling down.  Help them see a better day, or even a better hour.  Give of your financial resources and help someone breathe a sigh of relief, keep calm, and relax.  Give of your talents and help someone get to another level.  Help them live out their faith, walk in their gift and put fear aside.  Give yourself some quiet time to pray for others and speak to God on their behalf.  Give a smile or encouraging word to those who feel hopeless and helpless.  Help them live strong by knowing  God is able to give them everything they need.  Each time I worship and give freely  to others without any expectations of getting in return,  God blows my mind with His faithfulness, unfailing love, grace and mercy. When we give to God He gets all the glory.  Now that’s what I call living on pitch.

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prayer

Monday Prayer

Lord help me get a grip before I slip. Anchored living starts with prayer. Now that’s what I call Living On Pitch.