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When you are battered and beaten by the world it’s hard to burn brightly. We can be smothered by so many things from our past it’s hard to see the good we can do.

We can be smothered by that sin that seems unstoppable. We can be smothered by that act in the past that still has it’s consequences in our lives, that still haunts us. You know the one. The one you hope no one ever finds out about. We can be smothered by the unrealistic expectations of other people, or by the constant reminders others give you that you don’t measure up. I call them bullies and the worst bullies are the ones who bully you in Jesus name. The Bible is referred to as a sword but it was never intended to be used in friendly fire!

Not only does Jesus come to bind up the bruised reed, he comes to fan into flame the smoldering wick, the almost dead potential that was almost smothered by our past or by others. To fan a smoldering wick one needs gentleness and care lest you kill the dying ember.

In Jesus day, the wick was part of an oil lamp. Oil was the fuel that fed the flame. You know what the Holy Spirit is referred to in some parts of scripture? Oil. You know what else oil was used for? Healing.

Jesus fans the smoldering potential of our lives through the healing oil of the Holy Spirit. Allow him to fan your potential into a warm, room brightening flame.


I love the raw emotion of David in the songs he wrote (Psalms). They are filled with virtually every type of emotion from anger to fear; from frustration to doubt; from confession to loneliness. Virtually ever song ends with a acknowledgement of God’s unending, unfailing, unconditional love.

So with such a great God on our side, why would anyone run from him? I’m not sure there are any easy answers but it’s been happening since the beginning of time, with the first two humans to ever walk this earth.

What an amazing relationship Adam and Eve must have had with the triune God. At the end of every day they had the opportunity to walk in the cool of the evening; to talk with him about all the things they’d seen throughout the day; to ask him first hand, eye to eye, about life.

They were completely naked physically, spiritually and emotionally! Boggles my mind!

Then that fateful evening came. The Heavenly Father, the Triune God, came as he always did to walk with the loves of his life…but they were gone. They ran. They hid. Not only did they hide from their loving Father, they hid from each other behind fig leaves. And so the story goes on.

We still do it of course. We see our failings; we grieve over our weaknesses; we hide and blame and pass on the responsibility of our guilt to others. It’s been going on for thousands of years.

One other thing hasn’t changed. He still comes for you. Still seeks you out. In spite of your failings, still passionately desires to be intimately involved with you. He won’t judge. He won’t accuse. He only wants to love on you a bit.

Why do we run from that?! Maybe it’s time we come out of the bushes and renew a love relationship.


Wisdom isn’t dependent on your level of knowledge. Wisdom is using the knowledge you have to its fullest extent.

I have a friend who is my example of the American Dream. He’s well in his 70’s now, owner of over 50 banks, 5 corporations, and his worth is in the billions. One time he said to me, rather sheepishly, “I don’t really know how much money I have, but God has given it to me to bless others.”

The amazing thing to me, and the lesson I’m hoping to learn is that he didn’t operate on tons of knowledge to get him where he is today. He relied on hard work, wisdom and vision. His story starts out as a young man who cut wood and sold it to make a living. But he saw possibilities in what he did know, was wise in pursuing his vision, and along the way picked up the knowledge he needs today to manage his business empire.

What books haven’t you written? What calls need to be made? What is it that you haven’t pursued? (Yes, I have my list!) We serve the God of all wisdom. Seek him to guide you.

Wisdom isn’t dependent on your level of knowledge. Wisdom is using the knowledge you have to its fullest extent!


There will be plenty of people out there to question your motives and make judgments on your actions. They will drag up your past, embellish your failures and mock any positive changes you attempt. People tend to remember your failures long before they remember your positive attributes. Sometimes the voices in your head are your own worst enemy and biggest critic.

To get the truth about a book you ask the author. To learn the workings of your car you ask a mechanic. To find out how your body works you ask a doctor. To find out who you really are, ask the creator. His word about you is completely reliable because he knows your heart and loves you in spite of it.

Many people spend their entire lives trying to meet the expectations of other people, but the only one that really counts is your Heavenly Father. The closer you grow to him, the more you risk being attacked by others, but the closer you grow to him the more confident you can be in who you are.


The heart of mankind is a fickle thing. Jeremiah calls it deceitful and wicked. Some of the biggest lies it tells are lies about ourselves and our relationship with God.

“It’s okay. Everyone does it God will understand and forgive.”

“Will God really deliver you? Remember what happened to uncle Billy”

“You don’t really think God can use you now, do you? You’re nothing but a failure. Always have been. Always will be.”

These are just a few of the lies. Which ones do you believe?

David knew failure. I doubt David trusted himself anymore than God did later in life. “Search my heart God. I don’t trust my own view of myself. I don’t trust how I feel. I certainly don’t trust my actions.

His prayer ends with the confident realization that once the examination was done, once the pain of revelation is past, then show me the next steps. Show me the path I need to become the person you can empower me to be.

Be brave enough to open yourself to a God whose only desire is to make you better; to show you the path to everlasting life.

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