Thank You Lord Jesus

Psalm 57:9

I will give thanks to you, O Lord, among the peoples; I will sing praises to you among the nations.

A thankful heart is a witness of God’s handiwork. One cannot walk with God for any length of time without noticing the change of heart in thanksgiving to Him. No wonder why Scripture emphasizes this action throughout the entire Bible. Therefore, rather than I write a few more words of being and expressing thankfulness, below are a few Scriptures taken from the English Standard Version of the Bible. Read responsibly and let the Holy Spirit interpret each verse for you.

1 Timothy 4:4

For everything created by God is good, and nothing is to be rejected if it is received with thanksgiving,

1 Thessalonians 3:9

For what thanksgiving can we return to God for you, for all the joy that we feel for your sake before our God,

1 Thessalonians 5:18

…give thanks in all circumstances; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you.

Colossians 2:7

…rooted and built up in him and established in the faith, just as you were taught, abounding in thanksgiving.

Ephesians 5:20

…giving thanks always and for everything to God the Father in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ,

2 Corinthians 2:14

But thanks be to God, who in Christ always leads us in triumphal procession, and through us spreads the fragrance of the knowledge of him everywhere.

2 Corinthians 4:15

For it is all for your sake, so that as grace extends to more and more people it may increase thanksgiving, to the glory of God.

2 Corinthians 9:15

Thanks be to God for his inexpressible gift!

2 Corinthians 9:11

You will be enriched in every way to be generous in every way, which through us will produce thanksgiving to God.

1 Corinthians 1:4

I give thanks to my God always for you because of the grace of God that was given you in Christ Jesus,

Romans 1:21

For although they knew God, they did not honor him as God or give thanks to him, but they became futile in their thinking, and their foolish hearts were darkened.

Romans 14:6

The one who observes the day, observes it in honor of the Lord. The one who eats, eats in honor of the Lord, since he gives thanks to God, while the one who abstains, abstains in honor of the Lord and gives thanks to God.

Acts 27:35

And when he had said these things, he took bread, and giving thanks to God in the presence of all he broke it and began to eat.

Luke 22:19

And he took bread, and when he had given thanks, he broke it and gave it to them, saying, “This is my body, which is given for you. Do this in remembrance of me.”

Daniel 6:10

When Daniel knew that the document had been signed, he went to his house where he had windows in his upper chamber open toward Jerusalem. He got down on his knees three times a day and prayed and gave thanks before his God, as he had done previously.

Jeremiah 33:11

…the voice of mirth and the voice of gladness, the voice of the bridegroom and the voice of the bride, the voices of those who sing, as they bring thank offerings to the house of the Lord: “‘Give thanks to the Lord of hosts, for the Lord is good, for his steadfast love endures forever!’ For I will restore the fortunes of the land as at first, says the Lord.

Isaiah 12:4

And you will say in that day: “Give thanks to the Lord, call upon his name, make known his deeds among the peoples, proclaim that his name is exalted.

Psalm 9:1

I will give thanks to the Lord with my whole heart; I will recount all of your wonderful deeds.

Psalm 28:7

The Lord is my strength and my shield; in him my heart trusts, and I am helped; my heart exults, and with my song I give thanks to him.

Psalm 30:4

Sing praises to the Lord, O you his saints, and give thanks to his holy name.

Psalm 44:8

In God we have boasted continually, and we will give thanks to your name forever.

Psalm 50:14

Offer to God a sacrifice of thanksgiving, and perform your vows to the Most High,

Psalm 50:23

The one who offers thanksgiving as his sacrifice glorifies me; to one who orders his way rightly I will show the salvation of God!”

Psalm 57:9

I will give thanks to you, O Lord, among the peoples; I will sing praises to you among the nations.

Psalm 69:30

I will praise the name of God with a song; I will magnify him with thanksgiving.

Psalm 86:12

I give thanks to you, O Lord my God, with my whole heart, and I will glorify your name forever.

Psalm 92:1

It is good to give thanks to the Lord, to sing praises to your name, O Most High;

Psalm 95:2

Let us come into his presence with thanksgiving; let us make a joyful noise to him with songs of praise!

Psalm 100:4

Enter his gates with thanksgiving, and his courts with praise! Give thanks to him; bless his name!

Psalm 106:1

Praise the Lord! Oh give thanks to the Lord, for he is good, for his steadfast love endures forever!

Rooting For You in Christ!

Dr. Mike

Encourager & Founder of
Vocational Leadership 360
Author of e-Books:

 *  Dancing With God: Life-Giving Theology Explained
 *  Great Business Emulates a Good God
 *  Be Radical…Follow Christ!
 *  Simply The Messenger
 *  Unequally Married

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God Lives and Works Through His Church

Ephesians 2:18-22

For through him (Jesus Christ) we both have access in one Spirit to the Father. So then you are no longer strangers and aliens, but you are fellow citizens with the saints and members of the household of God, built on the foundation of the apostles and prophets, Christ Jesus himself being the cornerstone, in whom the whole structure, being joined together, grows into a holy temple in the Lord. In him you also are being built together into a dwelling place for God by] the Spirit.

Where is God’s home?

Since HE is omnipresent, which means everywhere at the same time, we may not emphasize at times that includes within you and me – the Church.  For Paul wrote in 1 Corinthians 12:27 “Now you are the body of Christ and individual members of it.” In other places we are told:

  • Through the Holy Spirit, we are baptized into the Church. (1 Corinthians 12:13)
  • Everyone who has the Holy Spirit living within them, belongs to Christ. (Romans 8:9-11)
  • You are God’s temple. (I Corinthians 3:17)
  • The Church’s mission is to recruit and train others in Christ’s teachings. (Mathew 28:19-20)
  • Jesus Christ is the head of HIS Church. (Colossians 1:18)
  • The Church is the “Body of Christ” – Jesus Christ’s hands and feet on earth today. (Ephesians 1:22)

The Biblical Church is not an institution, a denomination, nor a faith community. The Church consists of people allowing the Holy Spirit to live and work and lead through their heart, mind, and soul. And where the Holy Spirit is, so is Father God and Jesus Christ – the Triune God.

Yes, people attend a faith community which may consist of Believers full of God’s Spirit and also those who are seeking God. And yes, there are faith communities where God’s Spirit is dormant while people go about doing their business as they desire acting for God yet without following the lead of Jesus Christ. And yes, there are faith communities small in number but leverage their hands and feet to follow the lead of the Holy Spirit doing God’s work and reflecting HIS glory throughout their community. And everything in between.

We are all a work under God’s construction. Yesterday, I didn’t know God. Today, I know him a tiny more than yesterday. Tomorrow, hopefully we will grow and discover more about HIM. It is the same for all of us individually and collectively.

Some faith organizations are more vibrant than others. Some faith organizations are dead in Spirit and full of themselves. And many faith organizations are in between. But God’s universal Church, consisting of those with the Spirit fully living within their being, are actively reflecting the hands and feet of Jesus Christ.  They gladly seek to be led by the Holy Spirit in service to God and mankind.

You shall know them by their fruit. (Matthew 7:20; Luke 8:14)

Rooting For You in Christ!

Dr. Mike

Encourager & Founder of
Vocational Leadership 360
Author of e-Books:

 *  Dancing With God: Life-Giving Theology Explained
 *  Great Business Emulates a Good God
 *  Be Radical…Follow Christ!
 *  Simply The Messenger
 *  Unequally Married

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Live the Good News

2 Timothy 3:5

…having the appearance of godliness, but denying its power.

People like to put on a good front. We dress for success. When others are watching, we paste on a smile of happiness. Yet, one of our fears is to be discovered we are not the person we pretend to be.

I recall as a youth around 17 years old coming across a quote. I do not know who to give credit too and I may not have the exact words, but paraphrasing it read: “Shame on my parents for making me who I am, but shame on me for staying that way.” This quote has stayed with me my entire life. It always reminds me not to accept being a victim but realize we can choose to change.

After following Christ for a whole number of years, I woke up one morning, looked in the mirror, and felt the impact of one of those spiritual slaps. It shook me. I came to realize my life was far from how a disciple’s life is described through the pages of the Bible. I would read how an apprentice of Jesus Christ would experience HIS peace, joy, and love along with all the other fruit of the Holy Spirit. How a student of Jesus would yearn to be like his Rabbi. Yet when honesty took me by the hand, I had to admit the emptiness was deafening.

Yes, I put on a good show. The smile, the handshake, the proper words at the right time, everything one is trained to work a room for personal gain. But the power of God was missing. I questioned my beliefs. Was the Christian faith a facade? Another religion created by people to control the masses and make one feel good about themselves? Well, it wasn’t working for me.

Then, we dug deeper. Remember the quote: Shame on my parents (teachers) for making me who I am, but shame on me for staying that way, became my mantra. Opening the Bible, we began an in-depth study of being a follower of Jesus Christ. And as any long-term student of HIS will attest, HE led me through Scripture, books, and people and eventually to a place of repentance of failing to empty myself for HIS name sake.

To live the good news of Jesus Christ means replacing oneself as the central core of life with HIM, his Spirit, and his God. When one empties themselves of pride, channels their desires built on the Triune God’s value system, and puts into practice the ways of HIS government, one begins to experience the power of a relationship with the Creator of the universe.

The inner sanctuary of the human heart becomes a peaceful and joyous home for your Maker. You begin to realize God lives in you and moves you like a partner on a ballroom dance floor. You don’t understand all the nuances, but learn to trust someone who loves you so much you cannot fully express the thankfulness of the situation.

The power of God resides in you. Yet you need to learn how to allow God full access into your inner chambers of the heart and mind. When you do, you begin to experience and express real godliness in your life without even attempting to make it happen. You begin to live the Good News, experience the Good News, and share the Good News with others.

Rooting For You in Christ!

Dr. Mike

Encourager & Founder of
Vocational Leadership 360
Author of e-Books:

 *  Dancing With God: Life-Giving Theology Explained
 *  Great Business Emulates a Good God
 *  Be Radical…Follow Christ!
 *  Simply The Messenger
 *  Unequally Married

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Fear Mongers

2 Timothy 1:7

for God gave us a spirit not of fear but of power and love and self-control.

Fear is the weapon of the enemy. They manipulate fear for profit, power, and control. Whether we are speaking about a boss whose leadership style is to control your every move or the media who needs your attention to stay in business, fear is the drug of choice.

Movies are made to capture your emotional fear factor. In politics, fear is used to raise money, votes, and opinions. Those who disagree with you, threaten you with violence. Throughout history, fear has shown its ugly components to suppress human potential and social flourishment. 

Jesus stated in the gospel of Matthew,“So have no fear of them, for nothing is covered that will not be revealed, or hidden that will not be known. What I tell you in the dark, say in the light, and what you hear whispered, proclaim on the housetops. And do not fear those who kill the body but cannot kill the soul. Rather fear him who can destroy both soul and body in hell.”

They are fear mongers. They use fear as the tool of choice. They know what they do and laugh at the people who fall prey to their weapon. Yet God, as Paul writes his letter to Timothy, has empowered us with a spirit, not only to defend us from fear, but to offensively combat fear. “For He who is in you is greater than he who is in the world” (1 John 4:4). The Spirit which lives within each child of God expresses His power, love, and personal control to see through the empty lies of the enemy.

Fear has to do with punishment. But perfect love casts out fear (1 John 4:18) is how the apostle John stated it in one of his letters to the churches. Love is the solution. Not worldly love which is nominal in it impact. But God’s love which resides in you. The same love that created the universe, became human, lived and died a sinless death, and lives for the fulfillment of HIS purpose, you now possess. Let God’s love overwhelm you and allow HIM to fully live in you. Love overcomes all things, including the fear bomb.

Love, along with knowing the truth, sets us free from fear. Jesus stated, “If you abide in my word, you are truly my disciples,and you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free.” Understanding Jesus’ teaching and who HE IS lays the groundwork for separating the lies, falsehoods, and hypocrisy we are undated each and every day. Without this knowledge and relationship, one is thrown into the over-the-top, information overload human machine which overwhelms your emotional and intelligent brain center into a paralyzed state of fear and frenzy.

But be of good cheer. The emotional hole these fear mongers seek to fill can be quickly eradicated through the Spirit of the living God who wants to do more than just reside in you. HE wants you to experience life with HIM to the fullest. He is fearful of nothing and wants you to know HE wants to share HIS character and attributes with you. When you align yourself with HIM and allow HIM to have HIS way with you, you will then truly experience life without fanatical fear. You will know how to separate real fear from the delusional hype.

The with-God life is more real and lasting than anything this world throws your way. Catch it and watch the fear dissipate before your very eyes.

Rooting For You in Christ!

Dr. Mike

Encourager & Founder of
Vocational Leadership 360
Author of e-Books:

 *  Dancing With God: Life-Giving Theology Explained
 *  Great Business Emulates a Good God
 *  Be Radical…Follow Christ!
 *  Simply The Messenger
 *  Unequally Married

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Jesus Denounces Critical Theory

Mark 10:42-44

And Jesus called them to him and said to them, “You know that those who are considered rulers of the Gentiles lord it over them, and their great one’s exercise authority over them. But it shall not be so among you. But whoever would be great among you must be your servant, and whoever would be first among you must be slave of all.

Critical theory is a movement currently being taught in universities and expressed in the public arena throughout the western development world. The concept is built upon mankind’s carnal passion for power and is symmetrically opposed to the Christian worldview.

Critical theory exploits the dark side of humanity apart from God. This theory showcases a practicing model of those being victimized by those in power. This never-ending struggle pits groups of people in a continual conflict without ever reaching a resolution. Instead of bringing people together in a unified fashion, the process is a never-ending battle between sides.

Critical theory is programed for people to justify their personal anger, hatred, and violence without consequences for the life of others. Instead of reason, facts, and logic, the practitioners emphasize personal feelings, self-righteous indignation, and tribal mentality. Instead of exercising personal responsibility to accept and change their outcomes by building the necessary character to overcome their circumstances, they immaturely blame others and expect someone else to carry their load.

The basis of the theory is built upon portraying you as a victim struggling against those who have power over you. Under Marxist tutelage, the struggle was between working classes. However, in America the struggle isn’t with working classes because the free enterprise system allows people to move up into higher levels of status, education, employment, etc. Therefore, the critical theorist’s aim in today’s culture is to select common group classes that cannot be changed. The result is chaos and conflict between races and sexes.

When Jesus was presented with the issue of two of his disciples wanting positions of power within His Kingdom, his response was contrary with mankind’s carnal desires. Those who seek to rule, must first learn to serve others as a slave serves their master. The concept is radical in today’s ungodly environment. Yet history has shown over time that the best leaders who improve social and economic outcomes for the long-term are those who serve others and not lord over them. Yet to become like a servant, one’s attitude generally is shaped by learning to serve those who are currently in authority over you and who you have authority over. The Bible instructs us to serve one another for the glory of God.

Without God, this would be ridiculous. But with God, who created the world for all people to flourish, His ways and his teachings, and his fatherly involvement, makes His truths bear much fruit.

We have witnessed the western world like America built upon Judaeo-Christian principles prosper like no other nation in world history. On the other hand, we have also witness when countries eliminate godliness and moral integrity from their government, suffer from division, social animosity, and eventually self-destruction from within.

Jesus’ Kingdom reigns in the hearts and conscience of his children. When we lean on Him and make Him the central core of our being, the truth will set us free. We practice what He has demonstrated as His disciples have practiced for over two thousand years. It works better than anything else mankind has theoretically developed in their fantastical minds. Otherwise, we shall once again witness and even experience the self-destruction of another free democratic society.

The quicker we remove Critical Theory from our worldview, and build a unified consensus from humanity’s common Source, the better life will be for the individual and the masses.

Rooting For You in Christ!

Dr. Mike

Encourager & Founder of
Vocational Leadership 360
Author of e-Books:

 *  Dancing With God: Life-Giving Theology Explained
 *  Great Business Emulates a Good God
 *  Be Radical…Follow Christ!
 *  Simply The Messenger
 *  Unequally Married

Encourage a Friend…Share Today’s Message!


Copyright 2013-2020 Abbaco LLC | All Rights Reserved

Freedom or Enslavement?

2 Peter 2:19

They promise them freedom, but they themselves are slaves of corruption. For whatever overcomes a person, to that he is enslaved.

The Bible portrays an active battle between you and Satan, you and the culture, and you against yourself (1 John 2:14, 2:16, 4:4, 2 Peter 2:20, Romans 12:21, John 16:33). Jesus himself stated that everyone of us will go through tribulations of some kind during our lifetime. So, when evil arises, why are we so shocked?

As an old Yankee baseball friend once stated, “Life is wired to throw curve balls, sliders, and sinking fast balls while you are just entering the batter’s box and not even ready to swing the bat.”

Yet sometimes we forget. When life is comfortable, money is in the bank, family is healthy, and the world is speaking good news, we experience temporary utopia and believe life will be like this forever. Then the bottom falls.

Most of the time, it’s a family affair. A tragic accident, or death of a love one hits those immediately within our world. But when a major pandemic like Covid-19 becomes a worldwide threat, especially for the elderly and those with challenging immune systems, fear immediately seizes us.

A recent poll taken during the Covid-19 fallout showed that 88% of Americans stated this was the worst experience of their lifetime to date. Doesn’t this hint that most Americans live a sheltered life?

If fear, anxiety, and social isolation doesn’t wake up the hearts and minds of people living in spiritual stupor, then you wonder what will. What will make people take a step back and realize how fragile freedom is and how enslaved they are within their personal prison.

We are all slaves. You may think you are free, but if you step back and take an honest view of yourself, you will have to admit you are a slave.

You may think you live in a western-world democracy and therefore you are free. But are you? We know those who live under dictatorships are slaves to the state, but what about you?

If you can be honest for the moment with yourself, you will discover that you may be a slave of fear or anxiety. Or you may be a slave of your pride, your carnal desires, or even your thirst for more and more which is greed manifested.

You are enslaved by your smart phone, pornographic material, or fast cars and women.

Or you may just be enslaved by your weight, beauty, and appearance. Maybe it’s your ideology, aversion to risk, or suicidal tendencies. Maybe chronic health limitations, prescription drugs, or just the continuous alcoholic drink morning, noon, and evening.

Maybe it’s always to be right, resisting the love of others, or just being a self-made, independent person.

Maybe it’s not accepting personal responsibility, or making commitments, or just being lazy.

The fact is we all have issues that enslave us. The question though is how can we break free.

The choice of who or what you are going to serve will manifest itself in your life. We all will make poor choices somewhere and someplace. And we will most likely survive most of them. But will we thrive under anyone of them?

Real freedom comes from choosing who you will ultimately serve. You can choose anything you want and you will eventually feel its pain. Or you can choose to serve the King of Kings, and experience what real freedom within the divine circle of life truly is.

John writes in the letter to the church (1 John) that Jesus Christ is the answer. He already overcame the world for us. You can join Him and He will lead you like many others into real freedom.  He can help you break the cord that binds you to your carnal desires.

So, reach-out to HIM. Ask HIM to allow you to experience real freedom. Seek out others who also are on the journey to live free as HIS servants and lean on each other. And knock on all the doors HE presents to you. One or more of those doors you walk through will change your life into an amazing ride of intimacy, adventure, and meaningful fulfillment.     

But you need to choose wisely. And the first and last choice is always Jesus Christ.

Rooting For You in Christ!

Dr. Mike

Encourager & Founder of
Vocational Leadership 360
Author of e-Books:

 *  Dancing With God: Life-Giving Theology Explained
 *  Great Business Emulates a Good God
 *  Be Radical…Follow Christ!
 *  Simply The Messenger
 *  Unequally Married

Encourage a Friend…Share Today’s Message!


Copyright 2013-2020 Abbaco LLC | All Rights Reserved

Fruit of Ungodliness

Romans 1:18

For the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men, who by their unrighteousness suppress the truth.

The first chapter of the Book of Romans does an excellent outline of the characteristics of the ungodly life. In fact, when one reads the chapter, one can easily identify the platform of a political party of this country. But leaving politics out at the moment, when you read through the 1st chapter you come across the attitudinal spirit which leads to ungodly behavior. Starting from verse 18 through 32, you find:

Suppressing the truth – the ungodly don’t care for the truth of a matter; only the personal fulfillment of their self-centered agenda.

Failure to honor God – God is removed from the equation and therefore doesn’t receive the respect and acknowledgement of his authority in their life.

Ungrateful toward God – In their eyes, God is the problem, not the solution.

Futile in their thinking – Rational thinking without God as the center leads to many theories but rarely a solid conclusion.

Foolish, darken hearts – The emotional center of the person is generally negative with strong leanings toward the dark side of life. Wisdom is lacking.

Claiming to be wise, they became fools – Wisdom begins with the fear of the Lord is how the Book of Proverbs explains. Without God, they reach conclusions without logical reasoning and wonder why their lives continue to be expressed in stupid outcomes rather than victorious celebrations. 

Exchange the glory of God for other images – they worship and glorify the idols of power, money, fame, status, etc. rather than God who makes all things possible.

Hearts of impurity – Rather than a rich, emotional inner chamber of love, joy, peace, patience, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, kindness, and self-control, their inner Spirit is empty and mostly full with the darkness of life.

Dishonoring their bodies among themselves – adultery, prostitution, abortion, etc.

Exchanged truth about God for a lie – The biggest lie is eliminating God from the equation of life. Lies distort the truth and reality. Without truth and reality, one is dealing with a fictional narrative. Without God, how many other lies and distortions of reality are built upon the shifting foundation of one’s beliefs? Lies are empty promises with trap doors leading to pain, suffering, and delusional outcomes.

Worship and serve the creature rather than the Creator – They worship humans, animals, earth, institutions, anything and everything rather than the God who designed and implemented Life from the beginning.

Dishonorable passions – women having sex with other women; likewise, men with men; and people having sex even with animals.

Committing shameless acts with one another – lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender sexual behavior is accepted by each but contrary of a godly, fulfilling life.    

Filled with evil, covetousness, malice, envy, murder, strife, deceit, maliciousness, gossips, slanderers, haters of God, insolent, haughty, boastful, inventors of evil, disobedient to parents, foolish, faithless, heartless, ruthless – all negative attributes which lead toward societal suicide and destruction. A community cannot flourish when people oppose one another rather than up-build each other toward a common purpose built upon historical proven values.  

Approve others who practice these attributes – people like too associate with people like themselves.

We all have at times experienced similar ungodly attributes. The differences are those who regularly practice such behavior instead of once in a while unwanted blowups. Those who have surrendered themselves and have accepted the authority of Jesus Christ in their life, have changed their focus from glorifying self to worshiping the Triune God. Learning to walk as an apprentice of Jesus Christ covered under God’s grace, filled with HIS presence, and constantly pursuing a growing relationship with HIM, leads to a life where HIS life and beauty becomes a reflection in our life. A life worth meaning and purpose and flourishment for self and others.

Which is why the glory and honor is ALL HIS as we humbly walk with HIM.

Rooting For You in Christ!

Dr. Mike

Encourager & Founder of
Vocational Leadership 360
Author of e-Books:

 *  Dancing With God: Life-Giving Theology Explained
 *  Great Business Emulates a Good God
 *  Be Radical…Follow Christ!
 *  Simply The Messenger
 *  Unequally Married

Encourage a Friend…Share Today’s Message!


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