"Empowerment Through Education"

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"Arrows Away"

Posted on August 11, 2014 at 2:02 AM Comments comments ()
"Arrows Away"

Good morning.- Today's power scripture comes from Psalm 18:14 – “He sent out His arrows and scattered the foe, Lightnings in abundance, and He vanquished them.” (NKJV)
Have you ever felt as if you have been pulled to the farthest of your ability to stretch?  Felt as if you have bent over backward so far that you could easily see where you have been? Or how about things being so tight that you could not give another inch?  Well believe it or not those are all good signs. Yes...great signs. It means that you are just about at the point of letting go. Not the kind of letting go where you give up or give out, but the kind of letting go when you give ‘over’.  Give whatever it is over to God.  He has been patiently waiting of you to exhaust yourself to the point where you will now Let Go and Let God!What do you think all of that sacrifice and torture was about those 2000 years ago?  Why do you think Jesus bore those gruesomely abusive stripes?  Blood was shed and a random paid and you were redeemed.  Time to cash in and God has been waiting.  We must not keep struggling to operate in our own strength or we will be guilty of trying to negate the work of Jesus as the Savior of the world.  We must let God be God and do his wonderful Godly things of never sleeping; always protecting; healing; nurturing; teaching and guiding. Sovereignty requires some really big shoes and you and I can in no way even think about how to begin to fill them.  Let God – Be God.  He is really good at it and although you think you have the best answer let him do his ‘thang’.An arrow by itself, though sharp and full of potential, has very little power unless it is pulled and positioned.  The greater the pull; the more the tension; the higher the angle; the farther the arrow will fly.  So if you feel like you have been stretched to the limits of your patience, abilities and wits…guess what??? It is time to soar.  God knows just the right amount of tension and resistance for you to bear; he knows where he wants you to land and how much force it will take you to get there… Let God be God and enjoy the flight.Every day is a good day; it is up to us to make it a power-packed GREAT day! Be blessed! Dr. JoAnn

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Posted on July 31, 2014 at 2:16 AM Comments comments ()
Today’s power scripture comes from 1 Peter 2:9 (RSV)

“But you are a chosen race, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, God’s own people, that you may declare the wonderful deeds of him who called you out of darkness into his marvelous light.”
  Some branches of the military; fraternal orders and secretive organizations tout the fact that ‘many are called but few are chosen’.  They wear this mantra as a badge of honor with the stipulation that they are ultra-selective in who can join their ranks.  They try hard to make their initiations so difficult that many who sign up or sign on will become discouraged, disgruntled and disenchanted and fall by the wayside.  They are proud to let it be known that ‘not everyone is worthy’ to wear their insignia, logo or uniform.
 Well I am so glad that our God is not a respecter of persons and that his Kingdom is available to all who will answer his call.  God uses us to entreat others to want to join the fellowship and it is a good feeling to be surrounded by persons with like minds. We have been chosen; selected by God before we were even fashioned in our mother’s wombs.  We are a royal priesthood; sacred to God and peculiar in that we are sanctified (set apart) from the world yet we embrace the world with love.  We turn the other cheek; we cheerfully give of our last and best; we sow what we don’t have in order to gain what we need; we pray in the spirit and walk not by sight.  Yes we are peculiar but the most important truth is that we are chosen!.  So the next time life throws its usual blows and critics raise their ugly heads just remember God thinks of you in the highest regards.  He loves you tremendously. Jesus gave his life for you and wants you to have the best that life has to offer.  We are no longer shrouded in the darkness of despair, depression, uncertainty, chaos, loneliness or insufficiency.  We are now in the marvelous light. Speak to those dark places and rebuke their existence in your journey. The glow of the SON is so bright it can scatter any darkness in your life.  Be peculiar….and enjoy your life in the LIGHT!
Every day is a good day it is up to us to make it a GREAT power-filled day.  Be blessed! Dr. JoAnn
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"Embrace Correction"

Posted on July 28, 2014 at 10:48 PM Comments comments ()
 Embrace Correction
Today’s power scripture comes from Genesis 4:6-7.    “And the Lord said to Cain, Why are you angry? And why do you look sad and depressed and dejected? If you do well, will you not be accepted? And if you do not do well, sin crouches at your door; its desire is for you, but you must master it”.
     When Cain and Abel presented their offerings to God, scripture reveals that Abel’s gift was accepted yet Cain’s was not.  Many have speculated why Cain was rejected.  Was it because his offering was not his first or his best? What was his attitude and behavior when he presented his gifts to God?  We can no doubt postulate many reasons but one thing is sure; Cain was given opportunity to make right whatever was wrong and he did not.
He took the need for ‘correction’ and turned his inadequacy upon his brother Abel.
     This is an example of what to not do!  Corrective criticism can be one of our greatest allies when we are seeking to improve our present state.  When someone finds fault in what you have done or plan to do, don’t get angry or depressed.  Even criticism that comes unsolicited or tainted with mockery can serve a vast purpose in elevating you to higher heights.  Take heed at what is told to you.  You may not like the message nor the messenger, but get the information and don’t lose the opportunity to fine tune your act. Sometimes great gifts come in ugly packaging.
    Use to your advantage the criticism levied at you.  For a knife to have a better cutting edge it must be ground against a rough surface.  You cannot sharpen a knife on cotton, but it can be honed into a shiny winnowing cutting tool by simply repeatedly scraping it against a rock.  The abrasion of the hard times and the decision to not give up are the tools that will make you sharp and ready for action. God may use your abrasive boss, teacher, spouse, in-law or grumpy neighbor to shape you into the precise tool he needs for his Kingdom. Embrace and rejoice in each new lesson.
Every day is a good day it is up to us to make it a GREAT power-filled day.  Be blessed!  Dr. JoAnn

"God Did It"

Posted on July 28, 2014 at 10:47 PM Comments comments ()

Today’s power scripture comes from Proverbs 16:18 (NIV) “Pride goes before destruction, a haughty spirit before a fall.”
     We see it every day as men and women, many whom have been elevated to be pillars of society, are charged and convicted of crimes that evolved from misguided schemes involving pride. Like a pool of quicksand the trap of deceit that comes from prideful living can paralyze and overtake even the most upright and strident among us. Some people under most circumstances would never rob a bank, yet we see them being convicted of white collar crimes that stem from greed and arrogance.  Those who would boast of their love for family have been caught in the throngs of infidelity all because of pride.
     God teaches us in his word to be mindful of the stealth nature of pride.  It comes upon us slowly and without much fanfare, but then like a crying baby, will not be silenced or placated.  We all have a sense of pride concerning accomplishment hurdles we have crossed and there is nothing inherently wrong with enjoying the fruits of our labor. Where the problem lies is when we take ourselves too seriously and believe that all we have done and accomplished is due to our own efforts, struggle, sacrifice and nature.  We are mere branches of the vine which is Jesus Christ and can do nothing without him as our  source.
     When we focus on the reality that God is in control of all of his creation; nothing will cause us to sway from one extreme to another.  We are children of the Most High God and he wants the very best for us.  We do not need to boast and brag about things that really aren’t ours.  We need to take our eyes off of the “stuff” and what “we” have accomplished and re-think that everything is from God, by God, through God and for his glory.  Enjoy the harvest table that God has spread before you but be very careful to remember who gave you the power to get wealth; who made it possible for you to finish your education; who opened employment doors when others were being laid off; who protected you against HIV when you partied just a little too hard: and who kept your mind strong when life beat you down.  It is ok to ‘pop your collar’, just remember who gave you the shirt.
Every day is a good day it is up to us to make it a GREAT power-filled day.  Be blessed! Dr. JoAnn  

"Dogs and Hogs"

Posted on July 28, 2014 at 10:45 PM Comments comments ()
Dogs and Hogs
Today’s power scripture comes from Matthew 7: 6 (AMP)
“Do not give that which is holy (the sacred thing) to the dogs, and do not throw your pearls before hogs, lest they trample upon them with their feet and turn and tear you in pieces.
    As conscientious believers and caring Christians, when confronted with people struggling to overcome issues we are motivated to share the gospel of Jesus Christ and to often pray for and with them.  When we see a need and we have the ability, we seek avenues to help address the problems.  If someone is hungry we try to feed them. When families have been displaced by tragedies like floods or fires, we open our homes to provide shelter and comfort. We have even been known to open our wallets and share our resources with others in need.  All of these are great examples of living an unselfish, caring and altruistic life; but there are times when we must be weary of the trappings of putting our best out to those who have ulterior motives.
   Not every begging hand or crying eye is attached to an appreciative heart.  Not every sad tale is based in the truth.  We must rely upon the Holy Spirit to give us discernment about how to share our resources, time and talent. The devil is crafty and will use all methods to distract and pillage our abilities to get the work done that God has ordained for us to do. Everything has a purpose and everyone has a journey. Even good deeds, if not a part of God’s plan or path for us are a distraction. Be good to one another, but don’t be fooled. You cannot save the world. Jesus has already claimed the position of Savior of the world. 
 Every day is a good day it is up to us to make it a GREAT power-filled day.  Be blessed!   Dr. JoAnn


Posted on July 28, 2014 at 10:44 PM Comments comments ()
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Testify!Good Morning – Today’s power scripture comes from Mark 8:38  -Revised Standard Version (RSV)
For whoever is ashamed of me and of my words in this adulterous and sinful generation, of him will the Son of man also be ashamed, when he comes in the glory of his Father with the holy angels.”
Earlier this year, during church service we marked our obedience to the call of God as we celebrated our second church anniversary with prayer, praise and testimonies. It was wonderful to hear faithful members speak of the goodness of God with recounts of healings; homes and reconciled relationships.  As each person spoke we all drew strength from their testimonies to face our futures with even brighter expectations and hope.
    It is important for the Body of Christ to testify.  It serves several great purposes.  First and foremost the acknowledgement upon which it is anchored honors God as a means of giving thanks for what he has done.  In sharing the acts or deeds that God provides we let others know that God is always listening and addressing the issues of our hearts.  Speaking out about God’s providential care lets the non-believers know that we serve a God who cares about every aspect of our lives. Testimonies record sequentially the works of the Father; which allows us to ‘flip back’ through the pages of our history to refresh and renew our commitment to God and each other.
   Do not be ashamed of your life in Christ or the ways which God orchestrates to bring change. When it is your time, I am sure you want Jesus to stand boldly before the throne of Grace and shout your worthiness to the God of Creation. What might seem trivial or just commonplace to you could be a great testimony for someone struggling to see or move to the next level in their faith.  Your words could provide the reassurance they need or the framework of how to address an issue.  . Just telling how long you prayed before the answer manifested itself, could give a fellow believer the freedom to trust God’s heart when they cannot see God’s hand.  Open up and share your story. We need to hear it.   
 Every day is a good day it is up to us to make it a GREAT power-filled day.  Be blessed! Dr. JoAnn

"Yield Not"

Posted on July 28, 2014 at 10:43 PM Comments comments ()
Yield Not!
Today’s power scripture comes from James 1:12 :  Blessed is the man that endureth temptation; for when he is tried, he shall receive the crown of life which the Lord hath promised to those who love Him.”
      God always keeps his promises and the Holy Scriptures are replete with promise after promise of blessings that God wants to bestow upon those faithful to him.  Life will present different challenges, many designed to develop us into stronger, more God-fearing followers; others mask the evil one’s attempt to thwart the destinies that God has pre-ordained for us; and some challenges are temptations that test our resolve to do the right thing. I encourage you today to closely check out the things that are bombarding you and see the real cause for the frustrations and challenges you are suffering.  It could be that temptations are lurking at your door but disguised in ways that are subtle and often undetected.  For example a sure fire way to throw someone off of their game is to use the art of distraction.  When we are distracted we lose our focus and can waste valuable time trying to make up lost ground.  Some distractions seem so harmless and often can on the surface be ‘good’ things to do; but if they are not a part of your walk, then even good intentions will turn out to be time-wasting, blessing-delaying temptations.   Staying in touch with friends and keeping in the know can be important gestures, but if you can’t manage to stay off of Facebook or Twitter for more than 30 minutes before you feel the need to update your status, you could be the victim of distraction.  If you are really not one of the primary persons involved in a conversation yet you feel the need to put in your two cents; you have fallen prey to the temptation of needing to be heard. Notice that the power scripture tells us to endure temptation – not rebuke, reprove or cast it away– but endure it.  In essence, it is not going away, but you don’t have to succumb to it.  Know what it is and treat it accordingly.  If God says endure, then it means it can be done and we just need to hang in there.  Let us be mindful that the temptations around us will escalate as we get closer to reaffirming our faith in God and the power of the resurrection of his son and our Savior, Jesus Christ.
Every day is a good day it is up to us to make it a GREAT power-filled day.  Be blessed! Dr. JoAnn 

"Just Right"

Posted on July 28, 2014 at 10:41 PM Comments comments ()
 Just Right!
 Good morning! Today's power scripture comes from Genesis 2:18: Then the Lord God said, “It is not good for the man to be alone. I will make a helper who is just right for him.”
 Don't be in a rush to unite with someone just because you don't want to be alone. Being lonely and alone are two different realities. You can be in the midst of a bustling crowd or in an intimate gathering of people and yet be lonely. You can also be isolated by yourself and be in the best of company. I love my quiet time with myself; I often say that if others like your company you ought to love your own company; and I surely do. Nobody can make me laugh about silly stuff quite like me. Does this mean that I prefer to be alone? - Well yeah, sometimes, but I anticipate with great joy the day that God unites me with a life companion whom I can continue to grow older with. But one thing is for sure, I am not going to rush into any situation just because others have someone and I am by myself.
Some couples are mis-matched because they rushed into situations and now they are just too locked in to even want to do anything but complain, grumble and unfortunately- cheat. The scripture says that God is fashioning someone just right for me and perfecting me just right for someone special. Will he be perfect? Not in the sense that most might evaluate, but he will be perfect for me, with all of my idiosyncrasies and foibles; and I will be perfect for him. My idea of a perfect companion is too tainted by my carnality; so I am looking forward to enjoying what my Creator is preparing for me. Some might think it is a long time coming. And that might be true... nobody but a hermit wants to be alone, but as a famous saying pronounces - "[Good] things come to those who wait long as they know what they are waiting for". (Ralph Waldo Emerson). And I am waiting for a sure thing - God!
 God has already planned the perfect companion just for you. So whether you are a teen new to the dating scene or divorced and jumping back on the merri-go-round again, remember to enjoy life to the fullest as God prepares you and your soul mate to meet. Jesus came that you would have life and life more abundantly - not for you to put your life on hold while kissing every frog that jumps in your path.
Every day is a good day, it is up to us to make it a power-packed GREAT day!
 Dr. JoAnn

"The Right Stuff"

Posted on July 28, 2014 at 10:40 PM Comments comments ()
The Right Stuff!
 Good morning!  Today's power scripture comes from Ephesians 5:20:  “Giving thanks always for all things unto God and the Father in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ.” (KJV)
 In one of my prayer times on Sunday afternoon I focused on how thankful I am to have ‘stuff’. To have things that I can call my own and that I have free liberty to use and do with as I please.  It might seem strange for me to give special recognition to the tangibility of ‘stuff’ but I am grateful for all that God provides– life, health and yes…’stuff’.  As I have alluded to in previous blogs, I recently relocated and REALLY downsized.  At first mention of the need to relocate, I was traumatized; not because I had to move, but because I had to pack.  If you never really took inventory of what you have – it will amaze you when you have to pack it up.    I am not a bone fide pack rat, but I do like having the convenience of ‘stuff’. I have a gadget for most chores and a tool for most jobs. Why borrow when I can have my own?.   I believe in waste not, want not; so therefore I do recycle and reuse and save for a rainy day. And if anyone knows about Georgia…there is ALWAYS a rainy day.  My saving grace is that I have a touch of OCD so therefore I am extremely organized and very neat (Praise God); so chances are if you need something not only do I have it (in assorted, shapes, sizes and colors), but I can usually put my hands right on it.
Although it was a pain in the neck (and back) to pack up some of my things; and difficult to part with many of my things; in the long run I was able to realize how blessed I am to be afforded the luxury of ‘stuff’.  To give away dozens of pairs of shoes makes one realize that there are many who do not have a change of footwear.  To dispense of furniture and furnishings makes one think about those whose whole existence can be crammed into a backpack or pushed along the street in a shopping cart.  Who has time to worry about matching china when you eat most of your meals out of ‘to-go’ containers from soup lines?  One of the things that we forget when we complain about our ‘stuff’ is that there are many who wish they had stuff.  Don’t let foreclosure or eviction or a house fire be the cause to shake you up to think about how thankful you are for your ‘stuff’.  Look around at the stuff you have accumulated and give praise. Don’t’ complain about it…if it is too much, then give it to someone and share your blessing.  If you are junky and your stuff is in your own way, then clean up, but don’t complain for there are millions out there who wish they had ‘stuff’ and a place to put it.  I am thankful to have both; a bit downsized, but still gifts from God.
 Every day is a good day, it is up to us to make it a power-packed GREAT day! Be blessed!
Dr. JoAnn
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Posted on July 28, 2014 at 10:39 PM Comments comments ()
 Good morning! Today's power scripture comes from Luke 8:16 (LEB):  “And no one, after lighting a lamp, covers it with a jar or puts it under a bed, but puts it on a lampstand, so that those who come in can see the light..”
 You are wonderfully and fearfully made and there is divine purpose for your life.  God is so proud of his creation and you are special to him in so many ways.  You are made in his image and therefore reflect his glory.  Don't be ashamed to let the world know that you are a true believer; and since God is a rewarder of those who diligently seek him, anticipate special treatment from God. 
     In each of us is a special light that shows our connection to our Creator.  Because a single candle can dispel the darkness it is only fitting that our lights be placed in darkened areas to allow the glow of God from within us to shine forth.  If you wonder why you are stationed at your particular work site under an unnecessarily uncouth boss; or why your spouse’s family might be a little abrasive; or how you still seem to stick out a bit even among your friends; it could be that you are the light stationed there.  God is depending on you to make those opaque areas clearer.  He expects you to not put your light under a basket to be of use just for yourself, but he urges you to place yourself in situations where you will stand out and be luminous.
    Lamps require oil for refilling, wicks to burn cleanly and an ignition source. Keep yourself under the anointing of the Holy Spirit so that your oil never runs dry.  Daily pray in the spirit for renewal and refilling of your strength and courage to complete the task assigned to you.  Seek the refiner’s fire which burns away impurities and assures that your work is pleasing to God.  Do not shun, ignore or complain about areas in your life that are uncomfortable  or unseemly; these very places might be areas where God is using the strength of your resolve and the brightness of your light to chase away uncanny and evil issues that could envelope the lives of those not strong enough to chase away the darkness themselves.  Be that light .You have in you what it takes.  If God did not trust you with the assignment, he never would have placed you there. 
 Every day is a good day, it is up to us to make it a power-packed GREAT day!
Be blessed ! - Dr. JoAnn
 Youtube audio version available here -