Monday, December 11, 2017

GOD IS OUR AUDIENCE!

Praise the Lord everybody! Let everything that has breath praise His holy name! Praise Him in the morning, praise Him in the evening, praise Him when the sun goes down! I love to praise Him, and if that is wrong, I don't want to be right.

God showed something to me the other day while I was talking to a good friend of mine and I would like to share it with the Saints of God. He was recounting to me a conversation he had with his Pastor one Sunday after he had led the praise and worship that service. The Pastor began to mention some of the comments made by the congregation concerning his singing and or style of leading the worship and praise. After listening to the comments he told the Pastor, "I can't be concerned about those things because when I'm up there, the Lord is my audience." That statement stuck with me and brought to mind what David did and said in 2nd Samuel 6:12-23

12 And it was told king David, saying, The Lord hath blessed the house of Obededom, and all that pertaineth unto him, because of the ark of God. So David went and brought up the ark of God from the house of Obededom into the city of David with gladness.


13 And it was so, that when they that bare the ark of the Lord had gone six paces, he sacrificed oxen and fatlings.
14 And David danced before the Lord with all his might; David was girded with a linen ephod.

15 So David and all the house of Israel brought up the ark of the Lord with shouting, and with the sound of the trumpet.
16 And as the ark of the Lord came into the city of David, Michal Saul's daughter looked through a window, and saw king David leaping and dancing before the Lord; and she despised him in her heart.

17 And they brought in the ark of the Lord, and set it in his place, in the midst of the tabernacle that David had pitched for it: and David offered burnt offerings and peace offerings before the Lord.
18 And as soon as David had made an end of offering burnt offerings and peace offerings, he blessed the people in the name of the Lord of hosts.
 19 And he dealt among all the people, even among the whole multitude of Israel, as well to the women as men, to every one a cake of bread, and a good piece of flesh, and a flagon of wine. So all the people departed every one to his house.
20 Then David returned to bless his household. And Michal the daughter of Saul came out to meet David, and said, How glorious was the king of Israel today, who uncovered himself today in the eyes of the handmaids of his servants, as one of the vain fellows shamelessly uncovereth himself!

21 And David said unto Michal, It was before the Lord, which chose me before thy father, and before all his house, to appoint me ruler over the people of the Lord, over Israel: therefore will I play before the Lord.
22 And I will yet be more vile than thus, and will be base in mine own sight: and of the maidservants which thou hast spoken of, of them shall I be had in honour.
23 Therefore Michal the daughter of Saul had no child unto the day of her death.

David had it right and so did my friend, our praise and our worship is not for the onlookers here on earth to give their opinion or be a judge of it, it is for God. Praise and worship is not entertainment, it is a way for us to show our love and devotion to God. the Gospel music industry has corrupted what was once pure praise, and has made it just that, an industry, a money-making machine. Gospel Artist are pushing out album after album in order to meet the terms of their contracts, anointed or not it doesn't matter because it's not for God to enjoy, it's for the people and to make money.

We have shows like "Sunday Best" where contestants compete over who can sound more anointed and more consecrated, but God knows who is faking it and who has really consecrated themselves unto Him, Who's about fame and fortune and who are truly worshipping Him out of true love. He knows who wants to be seen and heard by people and those who only want to please Him.

One particular pet peeve of mine are those churches that open their doors to tours of people, especially in Harlem New York, Where Pastors make deals with tour services to bring in busloads of people to their Church services whose only reason they come is to be entertained by the choirs and soloist. They bring food and snacks and sit in the back and get up and leave as soon as the preacher gets up to preach, but he doesn't care because at least they were there for the offering.

The spirit of praise falls on everybody differently, our praise of God is a personal thing, it’s not for entertainment but it can be entertaining. It can not be judged by man, only God.

God is our audience! and not just for our praise and worship but also in our everyday life He is there watching. Jesus tells us in John 4:23 23 But the hour cometh, and now is, when the true worshippers shall worship the Father in spirit and in truth: for the Father seeketh such to worship him.

So worship God in spirit and in truth, worship Him for who He is and what He has done you and for His people, and don't let anybody tell you there's something wrong with your worship or your praise as long as it is in spirit and in truth.Our audience is God, not men.

God Bless You All, Brother Darrell, Speaking Off The Wall

Monday, November 27, 2017

WHOSE SHEEP ARE YOU?

Praise the Lord everybody, let everything that has breath praise His holy name! The Lord is truly moving in my life right now, showing me what's inside of me. God has put things in me, some things I did not even know were there, things needed for such a time as this.

These are perilous times for the body of Christ. God is preparing the Church for His son's coming, and He is preparing me so that I can do my part in the preparation.

Lately, God has been showing me that what King Solomon said in Ecclesiastes, that there is "nothing new under the sun", is still true today. Today we have our own version of the Pharisees and Sadducees, and we also have another issue that Paul talks about in 1st Corinthians 1:10-13, and that is the confusion of men following other men or Pastors instead of Christ. Verses 10- 13 state 10 Now I beseech you, brethren, by the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, that ye all speak the same thing, and that there be no divisions among you; but that ye be perfectly joined together in the same mind and in the same judgment.
11 For it hath been declared unto me of you, my brethren, by them which are of the house of Chloe, that there are contentions among you.
12 Now, this I say, that every one of you saith, I am of Paul; and I of Apollos; and I of Cephas; and I of Christ.
13 Is Christ divided? was Paul crucified for you? or were ye baptized in the name of Paul?

There are many so-called pastors and Church leaders out there preaching and teaching all kinds of doctrine and versions of the Gospel, one more charismatic and mesmerizing than the next. Saints are going around saying "I'm into Olstien", "I'm a Jakes man" or "I'm into Prince or Bernard" and so on. We have become consumers of style and soothing doctrine, instead of consumers of the Gospel of Christ. Paul said "follow me as I follow Christ"(1st Cor. 11:1) But we have become so attached to men that we have been remiss in our duty to make sure our leaders, our Pastors are doing just that, following Christ.

Jesus states in John 10:1-5   1 Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that entereth not by the door into the sheepfold, but climbeth up some other way, the same is a thief and a robber.
    2 But he that entereth in by the door is the shepherd of the sheep.
  3 To him the porter openeth; and the sheep hear his voice: and he calleth his own sheep by name, and leadeth them out.
4 And when he putteth forth his own sheep, he goeth before them, and the sheep follow him: for they know his voice.
 5 And a stranger will they not follow but will flee from him: for they know not the voice of strangers.

 Our ears are becoming more and more out of tune with the voice of the "Good Shephard" because we have become distracted by the many voices of the world and our desires to keep the status quo, to not rock the boat or be seen as a "troublemaker" instead of taking measures to "right the ship" and get things back on the right path, using the guidelines given to us by God.  The Bible tells us in 2nd Timothy chapter about men "5 Having a form of godliness, but denying the power thereof:" it tells us as a last resort "from such turn away." 2Peter 2:1 states 2 But there were false prophets also among the people, even as there shall be false teachers among you, who privily shall bring in damnable heresies, even denying the Lord that bought them and bring upon themselves swift destruction.

The Bible is full of scripture on false prophets and teachers, I'm sure they all started out on the right path but for whatever reason, they lost their way, whether it be from slackness in study or secret sin in their lives, we can not continue to follow them blindly into the abyss, that leads to our and their destruction just because we like their style, or because we've followed them for  years. Jesus tells us that HIS sheep know his voice and another they will not follow. It also tells us in Jeremiah 50:6 - My people hath been lost sheep: their shepherds have caused them to go astray, they have turned them away [on] the mountains: they have gone from mountain to hill, they have forgotten their resting place
We cannot allow ourselves to be led away by undershepherds who have forgotten their resting place, causing us to forget ours.

We have to ask ourselves "WHOSE SHEEP AM I?" If you are the sheep of God's pasture, then follow His voice and His word. If your Leader sounds like someone other than Christ and he refuses to get back in tune with Christ, do whatever you have to do to hear God again. Remember, HIS sheep will not follow another's voice.
       
                  God Bless You All, Brother Darrell, Speaking Off The Wall






Monday, November 13, 2017

DON'T PLUCK OUT YOUR EYE; JUST CUT OFF THE T.V.!!

Praise the Lord everybody! Let everything that has breath praise His holy name!! As the Lord continues to take me to another level in Him, it still amazes me to see Him at work in me. I'm constantly moaning about my need to spend more quality time with God, in His word, in prayer, and just walking with Him in the "cool of the day".(see my previous post)

My wife and I have about 13 weekly T.V. programs that we enjoy watching together. I DVR them so that we can enjoy them together at our leisure. As you can guess, after a while we begin to fall two and three weeks behind in some of our programs for one reason or another, leading us to have to try and cram in our shows whenever we find ourselves with a little free time. This, of course, causes us to spend less quality time with God.

Many times I have determined to cut down on my television watching only to break my vow to God. I enjoy "The Black List", "NCIS", "Law and Order SVU" and all the other Shows we have bonded over these past six years. The Word of God says that He is a "jealous" God, and I am feeling His jealousy burning against me whenever I spend extra time with the television rather than with Him. God's word tells us in
 Matthew 18:9 (KJV)
9 And if thine eye offend thee, pluck it out, and cast it from thee: it is better for thee to enter into life with one eye, rather than having two eyes to be cast into hell fire.

Now, I like having two eyes, so I went before God and prayed that it would not come to that. I asked God not to do anything rash because of my weakness and disobedience, and the Lord spoke back to me just as clear, "do not pluck out your eye my son, just turn off the T.V.". He made it sound so simple, and after I thought about it a bit, I realized it was just that simple in my case.

I realized that as much as I loved those shows, I loved the Lord even more. God knows the heart of man and He knows mine. God knows that I would trade in all my favorite shows just to spend some quality time in His presence. I know my wife would do the same thing. I know she would not be upset with me if we were to cut out some shows in order to spend more time before the Lord, together and separately.

So why do I find it so hard to do just that? God's word says in Galatians 5:19-25 (KJV)
19 Now the works of the flesh are manifest, which are these; Adultery, fornication, uncleanness, lasciviousness,
20 Idolatry, witchcraft, hatred, variance, emulations, wrath, strife, seditions, heresies,
21 Envyings, murders, drunkenness, revellings, and such like: of the which I tell you before, as I have also told you in time past, that they which do such things shall not inherit the kingdom of God.
22 But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith,
23 Meekness, temperance: against such there is no law.
24 And they that are Christ's have crucified the flesh with the affections and lusts.
25 If we live in the Spirit, let us also walk in the Spirit.

The answer to my earlier question is too much flesh! Television provides everything mentioned in verses 19 through 21, and my flesh wants to experience those things, but verses 22 to 25 speaks about the fruit of the spirit and the one I lack the most when it comes to watching television, is "temperance".

Temperance means 1. Abstinence from or moderation in drinking alcoholic beverages. See Synonyms for abstinence.
2. Moderation and self-restraint, as in behavior or expression.

My flesh is always trying to overthrow the spirit of God in me for control of my life. To me, temperance or self-control is one of the most important fruit of the spirit because without it the flesh would quite simply destroy us with all of its desires and lust. Flesh is on parade every Sunday in the body of Christ in America, we have jealousies, lust, pride, envy, and wrath, among other issues. The time is now for Us to live and walk in the spirit as God's word tells us to.
I for one have begun to take back control of how much time I spend watching T.V. and how much time I spend seeking God. Yes, I'm still going to watch SVU and NCIS, but not at God's expense. So no matter how far we fall behind in our shows, so be it. I'm keeping my eyes and just turning off my T.V. whenever He wants me to.
                    God Bless You All, Brother Darrell, Speaking Off The Wall
 


Friday, October 27, 2017

THE COOL OF THE DAY: WALK WITH GOD

Praise the Lord everybody!! for He alone is worthy to be praised! I want to thank the Lord for allowing me to live to see Him moving and confirming His word in these last and evil days. These are truly exciting times that we live in as God's word comes to life right before our very eyes.

The time to seek God with all our heart, soul, mind, and strength is now while He can yet be found. God is asking us to give Him more now than ever before. He wants more than our scheduled devotions and our time on the prayer line, more than our Sundays, and our weekly prayer services. God wants that time when we're riding the train or bus on our way to work or school, or just out walking and enjoying the fresh air. God wants to be included in our activities of daily living.
God's word tells us in Genesis 3:8-9  8 And they heard the voice of the Lord God walking in the garden in the cool of the day: and Adam and his wife hid themselves from the presence of the Lord God amongst the trees of the garden.
9 And the Lord God called unto Adam, and said unto him, Where art thou?

God wants to walk with us in the "cool of the day" when we are just relaxing and "chilling out", that time when we are usually talking to ourselves, making decisions and plans for the day and the future. He wants to be in on those inner conversations we have about our jobs and our relationships. It is obvious from the previous verses that God was used to just walking with His creation in the cool of the day, fellowshipping with him and was greatly disturbed when that bond was broken by the fall of man.

Prayer lines, church services, and devotions are great, but God wants to re-establish that bond with us that He had with Adam and Eve in the beginning, before man's fall. Genesis 5:23-24 states  23 And all the days of Enoch were three hundred sixty and five years:
24 And Enoch walked with God: and he was not; for God took him.

Genesis 6:9 states 9 These are the generations of Noah: Noah was a just man and perfect in his generations, and Noah walked with God.

leviticus 26:12 states 12 And I will walk among you, and will be your God, and ye shall be my people.

It is apparent from these Old Testament scriptures that God desired to walk amongst and be one with His creation, especially those who were obedient to His statutes and sought His face diligently. In the New Testament God by His spirit dwells in all believers who have accepted His son Jesus Christ. A dwelling is one thing, to walk with is quite another. To dwell means:     1. To live as a resident; reside.
2. To exist in a given place or state: 
               
The building I live in is a large multi-family building with many families living together but even though we dwell together in one building I barely know the other residents and we rarely even say more than "hello" to each other. God wants to do more than dwell with us, He wants to walk with us and be involved with every part of our lives. God wants to listen to our daily concerns and give us advice on how to handle whatever life throws our way.

It's always the cool of the day now when it comes to my relationship with God, we talk everywhere about everything, not just about what I want or what I need.
Open up to God, He's a good listener.

              God bless you all, Brother Darrell, Speaking Off The Wall


Tuesday, October 17, 2017

SOMETIMES GOD NEEDS A WARRIOR!!


Praise the Lord everybody! the Lord our God is truly worthy to be praised! I can't thank Him enough for what He has done and is still doing in my life. God is truly loving as He demonstrates to us every day, but then there are those times when God requires a Warrior to carry out His will.

The Bible is littered with the accounts where He has raised up men of God to be warriors. Elijah for one, he was zealous for the Lord, in 1st Kings 18: 36-40 we see an example   36 And it came to pass at the time of the offering of the evening sacrifice, that Elijah the prophet came near, and said, Lord God of Abraham, Isaac, and of Israel, let it be known this day that thou art God in Israel, and that I am thy servant, and that I have done all these things at thy word.
37 Hear me, O Lord, hear me, that this people may know that thou art the Lord God, and that thou hast turned their heart back again.
38 Then the fire of the Lord fell, and consumed the burnt sacrifice, and the wood, and the stones, and the dust, and licked up the water that was in the trench.
39 And when all the people saw it, they fell on their faces: and they said, The Lord, he is the God; the Lord, he is the God.
40 And Elijah said unto them, Take the prophets of Baal; let not one of them escape. And they took them: and Elijah brought them down to the brook Kishon, and slew them there.

Elijah was a man of God, and like all men, he had his moments of frailty and doubt, like when he ran and tried to hide from Jezzabelle, (see 1st Kings chapter 19) but he was able to call on that inner warrior when he needed it, as we see in the previous scripture.

In the old testament, God needed men to be warriors in the natural, like David and Samson. Today He is looking for natural and Spiritual Warriors, as His word tells us in 6:12 Ephesians  12 For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places.

We have to be ready to do battle in the spiritual realm, always wearing the full Armor of God. Peter Had that warrior spirit and it was never more evident than in John 13:7-9  7 Jesus answered and said unto him, What I do thou knowest not now; but thou shalt know hereafter.
8 Peter saith unto him, Thou shalt never wash my feet. Jesus answered him, If I wash thee not, thou hast no part with me.
9 Simon Peter saith unto him, Lord, not my feet only, but also my hands and my head.
This to me is the sign of a true warrior, Someone totally sold out to the cause, who is willing to go above and beyond the call of duty. Peter was that guy, "If just washing my feet is going to help us be closer then wash my hands and head also" in other words "I want it all, all that I can get." Peter was a true believer, no turning back and like every man he had his moment of fear and doubt, where he denied Christ but he came back stronger than ever after the holy ghost had come upon him.
Paul is another example of a  true warrior, God even used him to write about the full armor of God. When you read the epistles of Paul you can feel his warrior spirit. As in Romans 1:18- 32 where he lays down the law to a Roman Empire that at the time condoned all kinds of debauchery and sexual immorality including homosexuality also in 1st CORINTHIANS 4:14-21(NIV) he states 4 I am writing this not to shame you but to warn you as my dear children. 15Even if you had ten thousand guardians in Christ, you do not have many fathers, for in Christ Jesus I became your father through the gospel. 16Therefore I urge you to imitate me. 17For this reason I have sent to you Timothy, my son whom I love, who is faithful in the LORD. He will remind you of my way of life in Christ Jesus, which agrees with what I teach everywhere in every church. 18Some of you have become arrogant, as if I were not coming to you. 19But I will come to you very soon, if the LORD is willing, and then I will find out not only how these arrogant people are talking, but what power they have. 20For the kingdom of God is not a matter of talk but of power. 21What do you prefer? Shall I come to you with a rod of discipline, or shall I come in love and with a gentle spirit?

Peter and Paul were men of God who meant what they said and said what they mean. They didn't worry about pleasing men, A warrior cannot be a people pleaser but must always be a God pleaser. Peter on the day of Pentecost preached in Acts 2:36  36 Therefore let all the house of Israel know assuredly, that God hath made the same Jesus, whom ye have crucified, both Lord and Christ.

Peter didn't pull any punches and sometimes as men and woman of God we have to be warrior strong, pulling no punches when God requires us to be His warriors. A soldier carries out his orders, trusting that his leader knows what he's doing. In the thick of the battle as with God, there is no time to hesitate. God always has "a ram in the bush" ready to carry to carry out His plan if we falter. God calls on His warriors because He knows He can trust them to deliver.

We all have that inner warrior so when God calls on you for that seemingly overwhelming assignment, let your inner warrior come out because sometimes God needs a warrior.
 God Bless You All, Brother Darrell, Speaking Off The Wall 


Monday, October 2, 2017

GOD KNOWS WHO I AM

Praise the Lord everybody! Let everything that has breath Praise His holy name! God is taking me through something right now, something painful but at the same time, it's a good thing for me in the long run. In this walk with Christ, I have learned that some learning experiences will come with pain attached.

Sometimes God will assign us a task that we think is above our "pay grade," in other words we have a Moses moment, as he had when he spoke to God in Exodus 3:9-11
9 Now, therefore, behold, the cry of the children of Israel is come unto me: and I have also seen the oppression wherewith the Egyptians oppress them.
10 Come now, therefore, and I will send thee unto Pharaoh, that thou mayest bring forth my people the children of Israel out of Egypt.
11 And Moses said unto God, Who am I, that I should go unto Pharaoh, and that I should bring forth the children of Israel out of Egypt?

Like Moses, we feel not only unworthy but also ill-equipped for such a task. We not only begin to question our hearing but we may begin to also question God's judgment. The enemy seizes the moment and starts to plant the seeds of fear and doubt. Just as God told Moses not to worry and that He would surely be with him, God wants us to know the same thing. God  tells us in His word Jeremiah 29:11(NIV) 11 For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future

God wants us to have the spirit of David when He gives us these seemingly insurmountable tasks, David when facing Goliath ran to his task in 1st Samuel 17:45-47(NIV)  45 David said to the Philistine, “You come against me with sword and spear and javelin, but I come against you in the name of the Lord Almighty, the God of the armies of Israel, whom you have defied. 46 This day the Lord will deliver you into my hands, and I’ll strike you down and cut off your head. This very day I will give the carcasses of the Philistine army to the birds and the wild animals, and the whole world will know that there is a God in Israel. 47 All those gathered here will know that it is not by sword or spear that the Lord saves; for the battle is the Lord’s, and he will give all of you into our hands.”

God wants us to trust Him as David did when we face our Goliaths, with faith knowing that God has our back, knowing that He would not send us on a mission to fail. He tells us in His word Philippians 4:13 13 I can do all things through Christ[a] who strengthens me. He tells us that we are "more than conquerors" in Romans 8:37. God wants us to stop asking Him "who am I" and turn it around and declare "who I am" in Him, by standing up in faith and walking in our calling, God wants us to trust in our gifts, He knows what He has invested in each of us and He wants us to put them on display, not for our glory. but for His glory. God wants us to go from "WHO AM I" TO  "I AM". To quote Joel Osteen "I am who God says I am!!" I will leave you with this,
2 Corinthians 2:14 (KJV)

14 Now thanks be unto God, which always causeth us to triumph in Christ, and maketh manifest the savour of his knowledge by us in every place.

  God Bless You All, Brother Darrell, Speaking Off The Wall




Monday, September 18, 2017

HUNGER GAMES!


Praise the Lord everybody! Let everything that has breath praise His holy name!! God has been so good to me, His grace and His mercy towards me is never-ending. I ask myself have I been as attentive to Him as He has been to me? Truthfully I must say I find myself lacking. I have slacked off in my pursuit of Him.
God has been dealing with me concerning this issue. I remember How it was when I first got saved, how I carried my Bible everywhere and every chance I got I would open it and read God's word. Gods word was like finding water while wandering in the desert, and like food to a starving man. After reading it from cover to cover I would just start all over again and each time I read it was just as enlightening as the first time, and just as thought-provoking. His word was and is alive and we had a love affair with each other. Now we are like an old married couple, comforted by each others presence but the passion is fading.

David wrote in Psalms 42:1(NIV) As the deer pants for streams of water, so my soul pants for you, my God.

Jesus said in Matthew 5:6 6 Blessed are they which do hunger and thirst after righteousness: for they shall be filled.

I asked myself where is my "panting, my hunger and thirst?" I had to admit that I had over time began to fill my hunger and quench that thirst with other things, things of the world. It started when I finally decided to buy a T.V. after over four years of just me my Bible and Christian radio. Slowly my hunger for the things of God has had to compete with my hunger for a good movie and a plethora of television shows.
I often long for those simpler days of just me and God and His Word, but I fear what with social media and all the exciting media distractions these days, can I ever really go back to those days. I do find that as I get older, it is easier to let go of those things that I used to think were so important to me.  And like that old married couple, I mentioned earlier when we do take a moment to really look at each other we realize the Passion is still there and there are still things we don't know about each other, all we have to do is take a moment and look. 

The fire of God and His word never goes out and the hunger for Him and His righteousness never dies. Psalms 63:1 states   O God, thou art my God; early will I seek thee: my soul thirsteth for thee, my flesh longeth for thee in a dry and thirsty land, where no water is;

David had a heart after God, and that's what I have always desired, I love the Lord and I'm growing tired of distractions coming between us. In these last and evil days, we can not afford to be caught watching television when He comes for His Church.

Hebrews 12:1 states,  Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses, let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles. And let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us, 

I am asking God to help me throw off those hindrances that I so unwittingly put upon myself. First off I think I'll buy a radio.

 God Bless You All, Brother Darrell, Speaking Off The Wall