Monday, November 30, 2015

A Bee Lesson
by Lisa Gard

     My brother and I are beekeepers.  We bought 2 hives, bees and all the equipment we needed last spring and got into the bee business.  I love the bees! My family and friends will tell you that I can't stop talking about them....they are so amazing.  And the payoff is really sweet.. ..honey! All was well with the bees.
     But as rookie beekeepers,  we made a terrible mistake.  We were in a hurry one day when checking a hive and we got careless. We believe we must have accidentally killed the queen bee in that hive, because bad things began to happen.
     A week after checking the hive we began noticing dead bees....hundreds of them. Bees were fighting in front of the hive. We investigated and asked questions of our fellow beekeepers and found out that we had a bad robbing situation  on our hands. The bees from our other hive were coming over and killing the bees and robbing their honey. Without a queen, the colony had become weak and was not strong enough to defend itself against a stronger colony. In two weeks the queenless hive was completely destroyed. ...empty of bees and honey. How very sad!
     I was sharing this with a friend and she said, "I wonder if that's how God sees us?" I thought about that....
     I think our hearts are sort of like a beehive. We need to keep our king - Jesus - alive in our hearts so that we can be strong enough to defend ourselves against the attacks of satan. He is out to seek, kill and destroy...just like the robber bees. He wants to steal our joy (our honey). But with Jesus alive in our heart we need have no fear because He has power over satan! Our defense is strong, because He who is in us is stonger than he who is in the world!
     Thank you, Jesus, for defeating satan and for giving us power, strength and wisdom against his evil schemes. We desire to make and keep you King in our hearts. Please bless us and keep us in your care as we daily walk with you. In your precious name we pray, Amen

      The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy. I have come that they may have life and have it abundantly. John 10:10.
     I pray that out of His glorious riches He may strengthen you  with power through His spirit in your inner being,  so that Christ may dwell  in your hearts through faith. Ephesians 3:16,17a

Sunday, October 11, 2015

Putting Ourselves last

By: Jessica Finney

2 Timothy 3:2-5 But know this, that in the last days perilous times will come: For people will be lovers of self, lovers of money, proud, arrogant, abusive, disobedient to their parents, ungrateful, unholy, heartless, unappeasable, slanderous, without self-control, brutal, not loving good, treacherous, reckless, swollen with conceit, lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God,

Doesn't this sound like today's world? People are so selfish, heartless, all they care about is money, disobedient to their parents is running rapid, people are ungrateful, no self-control, and reckless. When we are so focused on ourselves, nothing good can come of it. Children get abused, neglected, given away all the time because parents are too focused on themselves. We need each other. (Whether we want to admit it or not) When all we think about is ourselves, we push everyone away.

I am not saying that we all don't have a little bit of selfishness in us, I am sure we all can stand here and say that we can be selfish at times but we must try to turn from it and make a conscious effort to think of others before ourselves. (Which is the way God intended it) How much better do we feel when we help someone else and take our focus off ourselves. No more pity parties of what we wish we could have or trying to find pleasure in all of the wrong things.

I feel like we are in our last days, all of the signs are there. We need to put away our selfish ways and try to bring others to the saving knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ. Time to put away our phones, internet, selfies, or anything else that is keeping us from getting closer to God and take the hours upon hours that we were spending on ourselves and start reaching others and do what God has called us to do. Who is with me?

Matthew 9:37 Then He said to His disciples, "The harvest is plentiful, but the workers are few.
Dear Heavenly Father, please help me to put myself aside and always think of others. Help me to be the witness that I need to be. Please bring people into my life this week that I might show them your love. I realize that I need people to see You in me. If they look at me, I will fail them but if they see you in Me it will bring them to You. Please forgive me of the times that I fall short and sin. It is in Jesus precious name, Amen.

Sunday, August 2, 2015

Jesus forgives our sins!

John 8:11 She said "No one, Lord." And Jesus said to her, "Neither do I condemn you; go and sin no more." 

How awesome is it to know, if we truly repent form our sin Jesus is quick to forgive us? He could have thrown stones at her because we know He was without sin but He didn't.

Obviously, we are human, we cannot possibly go out and sin no more but we need to start making a conscious effort to try to reflect Jesus to others as much as possible. We need to pray for convictions of our sins.

Too often, we want to judge other people. We want to throw the first stone. When in reality it isn't our place to judge. How can we judge someone else, when we have a sin we need to work on?  All sins keep us from the Father so why do we judge other people's sins as worse then ours? Sometimes it is to make ourselves feel better. We say at least I don't do that. Thankfully, Jesus isn't throwing stones at us.

This week let us try to focus in on our own sins and ask God to cleanse us from them.

Lord, please help us to focus on You and not other people's sins. Help us to love one another and not judge one another. Help us to reflect You in our lives so others will come to know You. In Jesus name, Amen

Sunday, July 19, 2015

Beautiful Just the way you are

I will praise you, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made, Marvelous are Your works, And that my soul knows very well. My frame was not hidden from You, When I was made in secret And skillfully wrought in the lowest parts of the earth.  Psalms 14-15.

Isn't this wonderful to know? For all of us that may hold a certain amount of insecurity, this is the verse we should memorize, We may think we aren't pretty enough or maybe our nose should be bigger or smaller. Ones with curly hair wants straight hair and the list goes on and on. We can get rid of that thinking though.  When we complain about our looks, we are telling God that He made us wrong because He is the one that made us.  Yes, we could probably take care of our body more but He thinks we are beautiful just the way we are.

This world has taught our young ones that it is all about looks. To me it is all about what is on the inside. I have seen some beautiful people that had a poor attitude and didn't care who they hurt, which to me made them not so beautiful. As children of God, we must work on our heart and try to make it look more like God's heart. If it reflects our Lord Jesus Christ then that would make us beautiful inside and out.

Please think about this the next time you look in the mirror and think if only I didn't have that scar or if only I didn't ______ (you can fill in the blank), think about how God made you just the way He wanted you. It doesn't matter who turns their back on you in this world, God never will.

Dear Heavenly Father, Thank you for making me just the way you want me. Help us to turn our hearts completely to You so people can see You in us. Help us to not get so caught up in the outward appearance and look more on the inside.  Let us not conform to this world and let us be who You want us to be. In Jesus, name I pray, Amen

Sunday, June 21, 2015

Father's Day

By Jessica Finney

Psalm 103:13 As a father has compassion on his children, so the LORD has compassion on those who fear him;

Have you ever thought about how much impact our earthly fathers are to show us what our Heavenly Father is like? I have thought about this often. Some come to know the Lord to find the Father they never had and some completely turn their back because how could a heavenly Father love and care for them if their earthly father didn't. 

Our Fathers can be a hindrance to come to know the Lord or they can be our pathway to the Lord.  If you think about it, a father that has compassion on his children will want to lead them to know the Lord. They will protect their children and you can't help but know that they love their children. They love us unconditionally. They put themselves last to make sure their children are fed and feel loved.

A father that doesn't seem to care can hinder us coming to know the Lord.  If our earthly father didn't show love, then how can our heavenly Father love us?  We are apparently not worthy of love.  At least that is what the devil wants us to believe. I cannot imagine how a father can't love their child.  It just doesn't make sense to me.  I have heard about fathers that are afraid to get hurt by their child because of a divorce. To me this is selfish.  A father should put their self aside to show their love to their child.  

Our heavenly Father has done all He can do to show us His love. He gave us His Son to die on the cross for our sins. I hope, if you are reading this and do not have a earthly father that has seemed to care that you will be open to know the love of our Heavenly Father.

I have a "step" dad that has always been there for me. I put step in parenthesis because he has always been a dad to me. He has shown me how my Heavenly Father loves me. My "step" dad didn't go to church until my junior or senior year but he loved me and always put himself aside to make sure I had everything I need, when really he didn't have too. He didn't have to marry my mom knowing she had a child but he did. He didn't have to take time in the evenings after working all day to play with me but he did.

 This is the same with our Heavenly Father, He didn't have to create us but He did. He didn't have to send His Son to die for our sins but He did.

All of you fathers out there, please take heart the blessing God has given you and cherish the moment with your child. It maybe the only thing that brings them to the Lord. They need your love and your time.  Money can't buy happiness so don't just go out and buy them something. Go outside and play ball with them or a board game. (even if it isn't something you enjoy) Your time means more to them then anything on this earth.

Dear Heavenly Father, I pray for all the people that don't have earthly fathers for whatever reason, that they may come to know you and know the love You have for them. I pray that they can get the strength and courage to be the father they need to be. I thank you for bringing my "step" dad in my life because he has shown me the time and love that I needed.  In Jesus precious name, Amen

Saturday, May 30, 2015

Be Humble

by: Jessica Finney

1 Peter 5:5-7 Likewise you younger people, submit yourselves to your elders. Yes, all of you be submissive to one another and be clothed with humility, for "God resists the proud, But gives grace tot the humble." Therefore humble yourselves under the mighty hand of God, that He may exalt you in due time. casting all your care upon Him, for He cares for you.

I think we have had all been to a church where there is one or two that want to control everything.  Maybe you are one that has trouble wanting to control everything and everybody around you. There are people who will try to manipulate you and everything else just to get their way.  You expect it from the world but you don't always expect it from people that call themselves Christians. But you know what, we are all human and there will be problems among each other as long as Satan is in the world.  There are some that don't even realize how controlling they are and there are some that know exactly what they are doing.

I know anytime I have tried to take control of my life it didn't go well. We need to stay humble and realize God will take care of us. When we put ourselves in the controlling position then we are taking God out of it.  We are saying God; we can take care of it. You know what happens when we do? We are destined for a fall.  God knows best for our lives. When we try to control other people, we just make people not want to be around us and we are hindering God from doing powerful things in our churches.  When non-Christians see us mad or aggravated at one another, it prevents them to come to Christ so then we become a stumbling block.  I have also seen new Christian's get hurt in a church and never want to step foot in church again.  That isn't the right thing to do but I sure can understand it. 

This week lets take a long look at ourselves and see if we are the controlling ones.  Lets humble ourselves and see how God wants us to handle the ones that are trying to control us.

Dear Heavenly Father, Thank you for taking care of us.  We pray that you show us your way and help us to be humble and let you lead.  Help us to be mindful of those around us and not be controlling over them so we can work together for Your good.  Help us to know how to handle the ones that are controlling around us so people can see You in us. We want to bring others to You and not be a hindrance to the world. In Jesus, precious name, Amen

Saturday, May 23, 2015

Ripe for Harvest

by: Jessica Finney

John 4:28-29 The woman then left her waterpot, went her way in the city, and said to the men, Come, see a Man who told me all things that I ever did. Could this be the Christ?

I have read this verses several times but you know how God will show you sometimes different things each time.

What I have heard she went to the well at a different time then everyone else, probably because she was living with someone that wasn't her husband. (Believe it or not, there was a time that not everything went in society, people had morals.) But when she came to believe in Jesus she didn't hesitate.

She went and told the people in the city. She didn't worry about her past and what people might think. She couldn't hold on to the exciting news that she just found in Jesus. What would have happened if she would have kept it to herself?

John 4:42 Then they said to the woman, "Now we believe not because of what you said, for we ourselves have heard Him and we know that this is indeed the Christ, the Savior of the world."

She wouldn't have brought others to the saving knowledge of our Lord, Jesus Christ.  Why don't we share the good news, more often?  We may not have had several husbands or maybe we haven't lived with someone before we were married to them but we have all sinned. We all have a story about how Jesus turned our life around so why don't we share it?  This week lets try to shine Jesus to those around us and not hold it back.

Dear Heavenly Father, Thank you for saving me.  Help me to remember what you have  done for me and help me to learn how to share Your love with others that they may come to know You. Give us the words to speak and the courage to speak up when we need to. In Jesus name, Amen

Saturday, May 9, 2015

A Growing Church

by: Jessica Finney

Acts 2:46-47 "So continuing daily with one accord in the temple, and breaking bread from house to house, they ate their food with gladness and simplicity of heart. praising God and having favor with all the people. And the Lord added to the church daily those who were being saved.

As I sit and write this blog, I couldn't help but think about the part in these verses that says one accord.  Do you see how much could happen if we all went in one accord. We could be helping the kingdom bringing others to Christ. Too often people in the church are too busy arguing about what color they should paint a classroom, which makes them forget what church is really about.  With us arguing and bickering of the stupidest things, this makes people wonder why they even want to go to church.  This is the devils playground because it gets us off the focus of bringing others to Christ. Too often people get so caught up in their denomination, that they can't work together with other churches because they don't believe the same way. Don't get me wrong, you don't want to stray from the Bible but some of the different denominations beliefs are similar, as long as they believe in God you have to ask Jesus into your heart and to know that we have all sinned and come short of the glory of God, and know that Jesus died for those sins, then what does it matter.  I don't believe until we get to heaven we will know on some of the things who was right and who was wrong but all I need to know is that I am a born again believer going to heaven. It is time that we unite together to bring this country back to Him.

Life can get in the way and take away our gladness but if we keep our focus on God, then we can be glad in him.  God isn't wanting a big dramatic account from us, He wants us to have the simplicity to see His works. I never thought I would see the day that I would like to watch the birds. Everyone that knows me knows that I never have cared for them and what seems like they don't care for me. People at work keep their windows down, the couple times I did it a bird flew in and pooped in my car so you can see why I haven't been fond of them.  But this year, we have a nest of Cardinals and House Finches in our little trees. I have been fascinated with just sitting, watching and listening to them.  If we just stop and smell the roses it can really help put our life in prospective and see what God wants us to do. In everything I do, I need to keep remembering to praise God no matter what.

 I need others to see Christ in me or how else will they come to know Him? Too often people in churches are just wanting their way all of the time and you have those few that are backstabbers. I am sure we have all been hurt by people in the church. It is time we try to unite together to bring others to Christ, instead of trying to figure out how we can run the church. It is time God runs the church. As I say church, I am not talking about a building, I am talking about His people.

Dear Heavenly Father, please help us to unite as Christians to bring more people to you. Help us to forget our differences and be united. Help us to forgive the ones that have back-stabbed us.  Get us back to more simple life that we can focus more on You. Help us to remember to praise You no matter what is going on in our lives. Thank you so much for all You do for us. In Jesus name, Amen 

Sunday, March 8, 2015

Son Shine

by Jessica Finney

Have you noticed how much better you feel when it is the first part of spring?  The sun is shining and you can go outside with a lighter coat on.  Doesn't this bring an extra spring to your step?  It does mine. I don't know about you but I get a little depressed in the winter time.  I miss the sun shining on me. I miss the green grass and the pretty flowers.

Although, you are probably thinking why would she put Son shine when all I am talking about is sunshine.  It is simple.  If we go any length of time away from the Son (Jesus), we will get down because we are trying to rely on our own abilities.  Which will eventually wear us out. If we stop reading the Bible or praying on regular basis, we miss that closeness. We sometimes can feel there is something wrong but do not want to admit it is because we walked away farther.  God doesn't move from us but we move from Him once we stop that interaction time.

It is very important to keep building our relationship with God because like people in our lives if we do not interact with them, we don't have a relationship with them. How can we get to know them, without talking to them and get this "listen to them"?  Have you had those few people that talk so much that they don't listen? Some people are so consumed with themselves that they couldn't care less what you are saying all they want to talk about is themselves. Well, it is time that we start listening to God and that requires reading our Bible and praying to Him on a regular basis.

Praying always with all prayer and supplication in the Spirit, and watching thereunto with all perseverance and supplication for all saints; Ephesians 6:18

Dear Heavenly Father, we come to you today to help us grow closer to You and to always have the Son Shine.  Help us to listen to what you want us to do so we can bring others to you. We want a close relationship with you. Help us to not miss the many blessings You want in our lives. We can do nothing without you. In Jesus name, amen

Sunday, March 1, 2015

Jesus' Compassion for us

John 11:35 Jesus wept

Such a small verse but oh the power of it. Right before this, his friend Lazarus had died.  He knew He was going to raise Him from the dead. He had no reason to weep because he died but He wept because he felt compassion on the ones around Him.

This gives me so much hope. When I am sad, God understands that emotion.  I believe with all of my heart that He doesn't like to see us sad. He would love to see us happy all the days of our lives.

Although life isn't full of roses and all sweet things, we can still find joy in the Lord. He promises to always be with us. When I truly put my faith in Him, I can have joy even through a trial.  Is it easy, no but with God all things are possible. Only trust Him to give us the peace we need. He will take care of ALL of our problems.

There is no greater feeling then to feel like God has His arms wrapped around us and He won't let go. He gives us the strength we need all we have to do is ask.

Dear heavenly Father, thank you for your compassion on us.  Thank you for understanding when we are sad.  Thank you for allowing us to come to you and to  find peace in You.  Help our unbelief that we might be better lights for you.  Show us how to have joy in our trials. Let our trials bring others to You. Please bless us and enlarge our territories, keep Your hand upon us and keep us from evil. You granted this to Jabez so I am praying for you to grant it to us as well.  In Jesus name, Amen

Sunday, February 15, 2015


By: Jessica Finney

I know it has been awhile since I have done a devotional but I was waiting for the right words. I have went back and forth on what God wanted me to say.  I first thought about love because of Valentine's day, to remind people that it isn't all about the love of a significant other. It is all about God's love.  I thought about talking about how our bodies are the temple of God, even had it all wrote out.  I may share that one another time but right now I felt lead in a different direction.

Psalms 27:2  Let another man praise you, and not our own mouth. A stranger, and not your own lips.

It talks about how another man should praise us. How often have we told someone that we did something just for a pat on the back? We should not ask for people to praise us or that is our reward.  God wants us to do things for Him not for man to see but to serve Him better.  It never gains us anything to to have man's approval. Although that is exactly what the devil is trying to get us to do. I don't know about you but I want my treasures to come from heaven. Not on earth. I want others to see that God lives in me and that requires being humble and not wanting to be seen.

There are a lot of jobs in the church that go unnoticed and people don't even realize how they get done. You know why?  Because they are not out there asking for praise, they get the job done and don't expect a thank you.  Maybe in your church it is the one that cleans your church, decorates the church, whatever it might be why don't we thank them this week so that the praise is coming from us and to know they are appreciated for being humble.

Dear Heavenly Father, We want to thank you for the ones that serve you without bragging about what they do. Help us to learn from them and to show others that we are different then this world.  Let us put our treasures in heaven and not of this world.  In Jesus name, amen.

Sunday, January 25, 2015

God's love for us

by Jessica Finney

I am taking part of this from what Dan Ledley read this morning at Willis Chapel because I thought it was too good not to share.

Please read Psalm 78

These verses are talking about Moses and their trip in the desert.  Can you imagine the scenerio God has given them blessing after blessing but how soon did they forget it?  Every time they turned around they were complaining about something.  When they started complaining about the food and not having any meat, the Lord got angry.  Wouldn't you if someone just kept complaining about something you were doing when you were giving them everything they needed?  But do you notice what it says shortly after it talks about God being angry?  It says He gave them meat.   Here they are complaining that He isn't giving them enough and to me they should be more grateful for what they had, but He loved them enough to give them what they had requested.

You know He does the same for us.  How often do we complain about something we are going through, even though He has got us through other trials and wants to do the same again?  We don't deserve it and we are definitely not showing our gratitude.

The next time we start complaining, let us try to remember what God has done for us before we speak.

Dear Heavenly Father, we come to you today with grateful hearts for all the things that you have given us.  Help us to not complain when things are not going our way. Help us to keep the attitude you want us to have so others can see You in us. In Jesus, name, amen.

Sunday, January 11, 2015

Lord, Lord

By: Jessica Finney

Matthew 7:21-23 Not everyone who says to me, 'Lord, Lord' shall enter the kingdom of heaven, but he who does the will of My Father in heaven. Many will say to Me in that day,'Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in Your name, cast out demons in Your name, and done many wonders in Your name?' And then I will declare to them 'I never knew you; depart from Me, you who practice lawlessness!'

I think when we get to heaven, we may be surprised of the people that won't be there. The more I hear of people talking about lost souls, it makes me think of this verse.  There are so many people out there that think that works will get them to heaven.  Does God want us to work for Him? Yes of course!  We just can't miss the big picture.  He has made it so easy for us to come to Him but yet so many will miss the mark.

Let us take time to reflect on our first commitment to Christ.  Do you remember the time that you asked Jesus into your heart, told Him that you believed that He died on the cross for your sins and rose again and asked forgiveness for your sin (for we have all sinned and came short to the glory of God)?  If not, maybe this message is for you, or maybe you know someone that has told you that they think they are good enough to go to heaven. It is time to beat the devil at his own game. The devil does anything and everything to try to convince us to not come to Christ.  Let us make sure this year, that the devil doesn't win.

I believe time is getting short.  How evil our world has become, it would not surprise me if He would come to get us soon.  Though we need, we must start telling others about God.  There are so many out there that is going to hell and I don't want to be part of the reason.  I don't want them to be able to say, you never told me or your actions made me not want to become a christian.

Dear Heavenly Father, please let me shine your light.  Please allow someone that doesn't know you read this.  Let them see your love and soften their heart to come to know you.  I feel that the rapture can't be too much farther but Lord I pray that you bring a lot more people to you.  Thank you for your loving kindness and your salvation. In Jesus precious name, Amen

Thursday, January 1, 2015

New Years Resolutions

by: Jessica Finney

Year after year people make resolutions and don't keep them.  So why do we make them when probably nine out of ten of them, we know from the start we do not plan to keep them?  I have decided that earthly resolutions are just a waste of my time. If I don't plan to fully go into them anytime during the year, then what makes a new year any different?

This year as I think more about what God would want me to do in my life, I feel He would say make everyday  a resolution to share the gospel with others, draw closer to Him by reading His word and praying more.  Do you know what an impact we could make on people if we did all of those things daily?  We could reach so many for Christ.

Therefore He said unto them, The harvest is truly great , but the laborers are few: pray ye therefore the Lord of the harvest to send out workers into His harvest. Luke 10:2

Are you up to the challenge? Sharing the gospel, reading His word, praying without ceasing, and most important listening to His calling and going/doing what He wants you to do (no matter what it is)?

I have felt for awhile that God has a plan for me that He is getting me ready for.  The scary fear of thinking it might be an encouraging speaker of some sort or to share the gospel through drama's. Whatever the Lord has in store, I have heard more and more as I pray about what He would like me to do. That He doesn't call the equipped but equips the called.

Dear Lord, as we go through this new year let us listen to you and know what you want us to do.  Help us to share the gospel and draw others to you.  Let us make a impact for the kingdom of God. Let us be ready for the harvest. Give us the strength to do what You want us to do no matter how hard it may seem or how unequipped we feel. In Jesus precious  name, amen.