My Friends Don't Understand my Walk with God

Living for God is such an amazing experience that we get to enjoy daily. He changes our lives from the inside out and delivers us from many things that used to keep our hearts in bondage. Unfortunately, our “friends” don’t always see it that way. What makes it even worse is when our “Christian” friends don’t support us. I can understand a nonbeliever questioning my desire to pray or fast, but not a Christian. I can understand an atheist saying negative things about my attempt at a disciplined life, but not someone in the “church”.
“Bro, you are doing way too much!”
“Girl, chill. Stop acting overly spiritual.”
“Don’t be so ‘heavenly minded’ that you’re no earthly good.”
“I get that you say you want to do right, but all of those things are just leading to legalism or a self-righteous approach of earning God’s love.”
I have heard these things said to me and to others before; but what if I told you that your friend was doing you more harm than good by saying those things? What if they want to help you, but their “good advice” is not “God advice?” What if God is actually calling you into a deeper place of intimacy, but you will never experience it because of your company?
Anyone that makes you feel bad for being passionate about living for God is a distraction from the enemy. It is best to keep a healthy distance and pray for them, instead of having them keep you comfortable in a stagnant walk with God. I am not advocating for foolish or weird behavior, because God will use friends to explain the scriptures to us and tell us when we are viewing things wrong. I am saying that there should be no one in your inner circle that doesn’t want to see you grow into who God is calling you to be.
Let’s look at 3 major things every believer should do when their friends don’t support their walk with God:
1. Examine your friends.
I’m just going to make this plain, everyone isn’t meant to be your close friend. Jesus is our example of how to love and treat others, and even Jesus had an inner circle. Jesus preached to masses, did life with 12 disciples, and yet He only called Peter, James and John for certain situations. Did he love them more than the others? No, not at all, but He had a different purpose for them and possibly a deeper level of intimacy with them.
If your friends stop you from growing, then you two must address it or slowly drift apart. If your friends are struggling with the same issues as you, then accountability is hard. Instead of having the wisdom to help you out of it or the boldness to rebuke you in love, they will give you a pass (because they are struggling).
So again, check if your friends are growing and keeping you accountable. If they aren’t, they should not be in your inner circle.

“Flee also youthful lusts: but follow righteousness, faith, charity, peace, WITH THEM that call on the Lord out of a pure heart.” (2 Timothy 2:22)


2. Challenge your friends!
This is something many never do because of fear, but why be afraid if the person wants to be in your life? Jesus had a rich, young ruler coming to him that seemed to have it all together. Jesus gave him one command, to sell his possessions and give it to the poor. However, the guy didn’t do it, and he went away sorrowful. What I find interesting about this is that Jesus never chased behind him. Too many of us are running behind people that God is not sending to us. If they aren’t willing to meet certain standards or to make any sacrifices, they aren’t willing to be in your life. If you are only valuable to them when it is convenient for them, that is not the will of God for your circle. Stop thinking you can’t push your friends to grow with you. If you aren’t doing so, you aren’t a good enough friend to them.
If I cannot tell you that you’re living beneath your purpose, I don’t love you. I should be able to genuinely say “get it together, you’re better than that” without it being taken as judgment. If you don’t have friends that do that, challenge them to challenge you. Pray for God to send people who will push you!

Faithful are the wounds of a friend; but the kisses of an enemy are deceitful. (Proverbs 27:6)


3. Be willing to find friends that don’t look or think like you.
This may sound simple, but this is one of the hardest tasks for a person. We will always naturally gravitate to those who look or think like us. It doesn’t matter if it’s politics or sports; we will feel more at ease when the person we are conversing with has things in common with us. Like for me, I have a few friends that act just like me. We can laugh and joke literally all day. The problem with that though is they will have my same issues so they may not pull me out of my spiritual valley. It wasn’t until recently when I started making friends with people who are of different races, denominations, financial status, various cultures, etc. that I hadn’t seen some things with a clear perspective. That’s like me being a guy with a Jamaican background and not going out to eat a lot when I was younger. So now when my wife and I want to go out or friends invite us out to eat, I don’t even know what to pick. Not because I’m super picky, I’m just not familiar with a lot and in need of someone to expose me to it.
How much is God trying to show you, but you aren’t able to see because it looks unfamiliar? How many people has God sent your way to push you into purpose, but you ignored them for being too “churchy”, “different” or too “weird”? Jesus gave Ananias clear instructions on what to do in Paul’s conversion. However, he knew how Paul used to persecute the church. God had to take him out of his comfort zone in order for Paul to be delivered, because he was possibly afraid of the things Paul would do to him. People may not be used to you or you with them, but you need others in order for you to be who God called you to be.

But the Lord said to him, “Go, for he is a chosen instrument of mine to carry my name before the Gentiles and kings and the children of Israel. (Acts 9:15 ESV)

Your environment will play a major role in determining your destiny. God wants to bless your life and it requires the right people on your team and the wrong people can delay that calling. Not only can they delay purpose, but bad company will corrupt good morals (1 Corinthians 15:33).
Grace and peace,
Tovares Grey

Stop Chasing Butterflies

I receive many questions from people who want to know how can they tell if someone is the one for them. We’ve made a YouTube video about the concept of “the one” and wrote a blog about knowing how you can tell if they’re the one for you, you should check it out if you haven’t already. However, it confuses me when someone says they’re with someone who’s amazing and loves God, treats them right, but something is missing.
“Well…. what’s missing?”
“I don’t know. I just don’t have those butterflies I’d expect to have.”

“The heart is deceitful above all things, and desperately wicked: who can know it?” (Jeremiah 17:9)

Can I tell you something that you know, but can easily forget? Your feelings will destroy you. Your feelings will have you running back to relationships that God delivered you out of. Your feelings will have you running back to abusive relationships, because you’re focused on memories instead of reality. Your feelings will have you thinking it’s okay to to let your flesh take control, but you know in your heart what God is telling you to do.
DO NOT ALLOW SOCIAL MEDIA, FRIENDS OR TELEVISION TO TELL YOU WHAT TRUE LOVE IS.
If you want to know true love, look at the Bible’s definition of it (1 Corinthians 13). Too many expect life to be like Love and Basketball or The Notebook. All of these Disney and movie fantasies will have you ignoring your blessing that you’re praying about. Many people want a godly relationship, but when they have a godly person in their lives that’ll correct them when they’re falling or lukewarm, they take it as judgement. So you want a godly relationship, but you don’t want God? Some people claim they want true love, but they really just want someone they can post on social media. Just because all of your friends are dating or married, that doesn’t mean God is telling you to do the same.
Don’t get me wrong, I love being married, but I honestly believe many of us don’t understand that marriage is way more than we think. We have to understand that marriage is a ministry as well and God has to prepare us for it. I honestly believe our motives are what causes us to have our blessings delayed (read more about that here).

“(For we walk by faith, not by sight:)” 2 Corinthians 5:7

I’ve learned that we live in a generation of people that are driven by emotions (see Provers 30:12). We disregard the word of God, and we go by opinions instead of scripture. We don’t like correction, because our feelings are placed higher than God at times.

“There is a generation that are pure in their own eyes, and yet is not washed from their filthiness.” (Proverbs‬ ‭30:12‬)

There are days when my marriage isn’t all sunshine and roses. I absolutely love my wife and our marriage is great (she said so as well, so don’t think I’m being dramatic lol). However, that does NOT mean we are happy every single waking moment of the day. There are some days when it’s like she can’t wait to hug me, and there are some times when I’m sure her hands just want to hug my neck. If we go by those days when there are no “butterflies”, we’d foolishly think God didn’t bring us together. When we don’t feel those “butterflies”, does that mean it’s time to jump ship? No. It’s time to keep cultivating our love so it doesn’t die out.
Does that mean I’m telling you to settle? NO, PLEASE DON’T SETTLE. I get butterflies when I’m around my wife still. But you have to understand feelings should not dictate your future. Pray regarding that person. If God gives you peace regarding them and He gives you confirmation to keeping the relationship, then don’t give up on them just because you don’t feel happy all the time.
Grace and peace.

Stumbled back into Lust? #NoLustNovember

Hey guys! Day 6, and I know some of you are absolutely amazing and you are just kicking your old lifestyle out and seeking Jesus like never before. However, I am realistic and I know this isn’t the case for all of us. Have you made a mistake since the month started? Have you looked at lustful images and didn’t turn away like you should have? Is that girl’s body still in your mind, bro? Is that handsome guy still playing with your mind and emotions, sis? Did that song, movie, or conversation stir lust back up into your heart? Did you go to their house again knowing it would lead to fornication?
 

Like a dog that returns to his vomit is a fool who repeats his folly. (Proverbs 26:11 ESV)

 
It’s crazy that we look at the men and women in the bible as being such perfect believers and that must have been the reason God used them, right? Wrong, God used them because they depended on His Spirit. God didn’t use them because they had it all figured out. Paul is someone I reference a lot, because he was a great example on how to live (other than Jesus). However Paul mentioned that he had a weakness he wanted God to remove. God told him “no”. He was telling Paul that His grace was sufficient for him and He would help him overcome his issues (see 2 Corinthians 12:7-10). However, I want to draw your attention to Romans 7 (read all of it when you can). Paul mentions that the things he wants to do, he doesn’t do, but yet he finds himself doing things he doesn’t plan to do (Romans 7:15). Sounds familiar? Yes, because that is all of us serving Christ. We want to live pure and righteous lives, but we don’t at times. We want to hate sin at times, but yet we find ourselves falling into sin. Not only do we fall into sin, but we fall into the same one we repented of 831 times at the altar. However, I love how chapter 8 begins, because it stops focusing on our failures and points us to the solution – Jesus and His grace. You are not condemned. You are His. Don’t stay in your mess when Jesus died to free you.
 

There is therefore now no condemnation to them which are in Christ Jesus, who walk not after the flesh, but after the Spirit. (Romans 8:1)

 
I’m here to tell you that it is okay that you messed up. The only people who mess up are the ones who tried. You can only break a fast when you are fasting. You can only become weary when you have been fighting. Falling is inevitable, because you are human. But that is why we have the Holy Spirit, to guide us away from temptation and to restore us when we fall. Are your actions okay when you sin? Not at all. Is God pleased with your decision to turn back to your sin? No, He wasn’t pleased. But I am here to tell you that it is okay for you to get back up again. No way am I telling you to keep committing your sin, but you have to understand that God expects growth, but He is fully aware that we are human. There is grace for His children because we cannot do things on our own (Psalms 130:3). You don’t have to stay down just because you fell into the same mess. You can and you will overcome, in Jesus’ name. You won’t overcome on your own, but you will when you decide to turn away from those things and people that are toxic to your spiritual walk.
 

If thou, Lord, shouldest mark iniquities, O Lord, who shall stand? But there is forgiveness with thee, that thou mayest be feared. (Psalms 130:3-4)

 
So for those who have fallen, and for those will fall tomorrow, please get back up again. Be sorrowful, be remorseful, be sincere in your repentance and get back up again. Take a break from social media if you must. Unfollow some accounts if you’re failing. End some relationships if you see the cycle is repeating and no boundaries are being followed. Because it is one thing for your relationship to make a mistake, but it is another when it is just not God’s will for your life (read more about that here). Please don’t quit, let’s keep growing!
Remember to stay engaged with us! How?
– By using the hashtag #NoLustNovember on your pictures, statuses or videos that you’ll use to encourage others.
– Sharing what God shared with you during your devotion.
– Sharing a quick video about overcoming lust or a testimony.
 
Pray Psalms 51 when you get the chance.
 
Grace and peace.

Feeling Unqualified?

There are many people in the church that absolutely love Jesus, but have some “issues” that prevent them from being confident in who they are. I pray that we get to the understanding that God didn’t pick us because He thought we were perfect. He understands your issues, but He wants your heart.
There is only so much the devil can do, but I know for sure he cannot silence the mouth of a believer that is focused on on the will of God. Job went through a storm and was determined to still trust God (Job 1:20-22). The Hebrew boys decided to not serve a false God despite being threatened to their death (Daniel 3:17-18). Paul and Silas were in prison and decided to still praise God (Acts 16:25). The list goes on with many people who didn’t allow their confidence in God to end.

“So do not throw away this confident trust in the Lord. Remember the great reward it brings you! Patient endurance is what you need now, so that you will continue to do God’s will. Then you will receive all that he has promised.” (Hebrews‬ ‭10:35-36‬ ‭NLT‬‬)

Even if our hearts will condemn us at times, the Bible tells us the solution to that feeling: “God is GREATER than our hearts” (1 John 3:20). You know that sin that you feel is to big for grace? It isn’t, God’s love outweigh our mistakes.
Let’s dive into a few scenarios that we all have fell into at some point.
1. You have a bad past that you don’t want to be “exposed”?
Many people don’t understand this simple concept, God is not like humans. God does not forgive some of our sins and keep track of the “big” ones, that is what we do at times. God is not saying “I forgive you on this condition”, but that is what people do. The church has to reach to a point when sinners, and even believers that have fell into sin, feel comfortable enough to come forward and seek healing (see James 5:16 and 1 John 1:8-10). And we also must come to the realization that God is a loving Father, not just a judge. Yes, sin should never be taken lightly, but understand that Jesus died for you on purpose. He knew when you’d fall, so don’t be ashamed of your past. Let your past be your testimony.

Come now, and let us reason together, saith the Lord: though your sins be as scarlet, they shall be as white as snow; though they be red like crimson, they shall be as wool. (Isaiah 1:18)

2. You feel as though you don’t have the resources or capability.
I don’t know how your spiritual walk has been, but I know for a fact that sometimes I feel inadequate or simply unable to do what God has called me to do. It’s crazy that I’d think that because He’s the one doing the work, I’m just the vessel. We place so much on ourselves and we don’t even realize all that does is take the glory for ourselves. I pray that God will strip away any pride I may have so that I can do His work willingly and with passion, without fear of how it would turn out. 
Moses didn’t believe he could speak well enough (Exodus 4:10), but God used him. David committed adultery and caused innocent blood to be shed, yet God restored him and called him a man after His own heart (Acts13:22). Paul used to persecute the church. Peter denied Jesus (Matthew 26:70-74). Jonah was disobedient and God gave him another chance; the guy was even suicidal. Pause for a quick second! You can be a child of God and get tempted with those thoughts! Please don’t cave in to suicide, allow God to give you His peace. Your valley moments are when you need to trust God the most, not isolate yourself. As we were….. God can use you despite those things you struggle with. Paul said God gave him a thorn in his flesh to keep him humble (2 Corinthians 12:7-10). Jesus said He would NOT remove the thorn, because His grace was sufficient in our weakness. Quit expecting God to remove those desires and struggles all of the time. God does remove ungodly desires as we spend time with Him. Other times, God allows us to have struggles in our flesh because it FORCES US TO RELY ON HIM FOR STRENGTH. Use your weakness to your advantage, seek God constantly and wholeheartedly.
You lack nothing, use what God gave you. Don’t compare yourself to others, be who God called you to be. You aren’t behind in life, your goal is not to keep up with others, but to be in the will of God.

“Then he answered and spake unto me, saying, This is the word of the Lord unto Zerubbabel, saying, Not by might, nor by power, but by my spirit, saith the Lord of hosts.” (Zechariah‬ ‭4:6‬)

3. You are still in a sin that you know is wrong, but you don’t want to be delivered.
There is so much to say about this, but the truth is, you may already know it. You know God doesn’t want you out there in sin. You know sex outside of marriage is wrong. You know that stealing, partying, carnal lifestyle isn’t building you up, it’s simply making you numb to the voice of God. I won’t try to scare you straight, because I’m sure God is talking to you already if you’ve read this far. Please, just come home. I say this as a brother in Christ, we need you. There is no such thing as happiness outside of the will of God, it’s only temporary. There’s no peace outside of God’s will, only bondage and a constant need for more even though your flesh won’t be satisfied. Let go of that secret sin, you can’t grow with it.

“Draw nigh to God, and he will draw nigh to you. Cleanse your hands, ye sinners; and purify your hearts, ye double minded.”‭‭ (James‬ ‭4:8‬)

I’m convinced that since the devil can’t stop us from getting to Heaven, he will try to stop us from fully realizing Who we belong to. We have to understand that it doesn’t matter what insecurity or “issue” we have, God is faithful and will use us if we allow Him. God works on our willingness, not because of how “great” we are. You can make a difference today, will you allow God to work in your life?

Grace and peace,
Tovares Grey

Wake Up

Just five more minutes….. It’s still early, I have more time to rest….. That’s what we usually tell ourselves every morning before we start our day (Lord help us if it’s a Monday). It’s easy to become so tired or so nonchalant and uninterested in doing certain things when they seem repetitive or unnecessary. It’s okay to be tired, but why is this happening in the Church?
And that, knowing the time, that now it is high time to awake out of sleep: for now is our salvation nearer than when we believed. -Romans 13:11
You see whether we choose to admit it or not, most of us are either sleeping, or hitting the snooze button spiritually. God requires much more from us, but we try to give the bare minimum, as though there is some check-off list to salvation. Why would God save us in order for us to keep quiet and not share His Word with others? Why is it that the preacher is boring and the music is entertaining? It seems as though the things of God no longer interest us unless they benefit us. Many of us shout at the thought of being blessed, but we close our ears and shout “YOU’RE NOT FROM GOD” if we are ever told to die to sin and carry our cross.
God wants more. God deserves more. Are you ready to surrender? It’s no point in us playing church, God isn’t impressed. We can be born and raised in church and go to Hell. No, I will not say “a Christ-less eternity” to make it sound cute. We can end up in HELL where the fire and torture doesn’t end. Why give that up for this world that only takes from you and could never make you happy the way Jesus can?
They confess that they know God; but in works they deny him, being abominable, and disobedient, and unto every good work reprobate. Titus 1:16
None of us are perfect and God knows we struggle. Some of us may never reach a point of perfection, but God is looking for progression. Wake up and keep pressing. Grace and peace.
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The Show is Over

Lights… Camera… Action! The show has begun and the audience expects a good performance. You cannot afford to fail with all these people coming to watch you entertain them. After all, they didn’t have to watch you right? Make sure everyone has on their costumes and that replacements are in place. We must please the people that have come to the “show”!
Many will read that and think I am referring to a movie or a play, but I am actually referring to the Modern Church. It seems at times that the place where God once inhabited is now a circus or an amusement park. Remember that place where we actually went and out of respect kept quiet in church and listened to the pastor? Yeah, I am not sure what happened but it’s now the place where people use their phones during service. Are the people coming to worship God or to be restored? Not all the time, it’s more of a social thing. “I had to get out the house, it was too much arguing.” Or when you knew the people would treat you with love, but you sometimes go and feel rejected and isolated?
Let’s not forget the competition that takes place within ministry! “I sing better than you!”, “I preach better than you!”, “You’re not even saved, I pray and you never do!”, “He/she doesn’t deserve to be our leader, I work harder than them. This church is bias!” Or the people that only show up when there’s a big turn out? Not too interested in prayer services, bible study, or even practice. They just enjoy the spotlight given on Sunday. Sad to say, but most times it’s because they want to see who’s coming, who’s wearing what, and if the preacher can make me feel good. You know, when I can attend service enough to make it into Heaven, but not too much where I feel conviction and might have to actually change my lifestyle?
Am I targeting anyone or any church? Of course not! I need grace just like everyone else, I am just pointing to the bigger picture! If we are not careful, we can so easily lose sight of Jesus. We can attend church faithfully, and not actually be a follower of Jesus. You and I must wake up everyday asking ourselves, “what can I change to please God more?” You see, it’s easy to turn God’s house into an entertainment center. We do not preach about repentance because it might scare our visitors away. We do not talk about principles God has set because it may cause us to lose members, things such as tithing, holiness, forgiveness, or even Hell. We tend to point just towards grace so much that we give people a false perception of God. God has many attributes, and to make people think He does not get angry or sad by our decisions is total deception.
I honestly believe that every believer will serve Jesus differently. That is simply because He made us differently, that is why I do not believe in comparing anyone or any church. Some people jump and some people stay still. Some people are quiet and some are loud. Even though I believe we should be free and give God everything, I will not say your heart is not pure if you aren’t jumping like me. I just know sometimes it’s necessary to shout with the voice of triumph (Psalm 47:1) or dance and spin (Psalm 118:24); the word rejoice here in Hebrew means to spin in a violent, radical manner. Off topic, but don’t be afraid to worship, who cares what people think?
My point to you is this, God does not want us to dilute His Word to get more people in church. Jesus told people some hard things and at one point it caused many to walk away from Him (John 6:66). He simply separated the fans from the followers! The Gospel and everything God requires will offend people. When you hear it, you will either walk away or follow Jesus, but that is the point. Do not change it to please people. Hurt someone with the truth before you comfort them with a lie (PLEASE, do it in love). So whether you are a minister, pastor, musician, or just someone that goes to church, let it be genuine. God knows our heart and it makes no sense that we try to fool Him. Be open with God and repent if you have to. But we must go back to the heart and true meaning of worship. When it is all about Jesus. I understand we cannot make every service sometimes, we are human; and church attendance does not make us saved, but do not think church is the place to go when you “feel like it”. It’s where we go to worship with the body of Christ, and to be a blessing, not just expect a blessing.
Get the actors off stage, and let church begin. – Kirk Franklin
Let us search and try our ways, and turn again to the Lord. (Lamentations 3:40)

Daily Declarations

Studies show that most people must hear something around 7 times in order for them to retain it, and some people say it takes around 21 days of repeating something to form a habit. I wouldn’t call people foolish, it just simply takes awhile to train our minds to operate a certain way. We must understand that no one is born good or bad, we become that way because of our daily actions. The devil wasn’t always evil, but when his thoughts got evil, his lifestyle became evil.
But ye are a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, an holy nation, a peculiar people; that ye should shew forth the praises of him who hath called you out of darkness into his marvellous light: (1 Peter 2:9)
It’s time for us to see ourselves the way God sees us. Stop defining yourself by your situation or your weakness. You say you’re weak, but God says to declare that you are strong (Joel 3:10). You say you’re ugly, insignificant or nothing to be admired, but God’s Word says you’re wonderfully made (Psalms 139:14).
Arguably, the best boxer of all time is Muhammad Ali (I’m sure he’d beat your favorite fighter). One of his methods of winning was not necessarily his quick jabs and hook shots, it was actually his mouth! Yes, it was his mouth that won most of his fights! He would always say something catchy like: “I float like a butterfly and sting like a bee. You can’t beat the greatest because I am Muhammad Ali.”, or “his hands can’t hit what his eyes can’t see.” Some may say that has nothing to do with boxing, but actually it has a lot to do with it. Ali would torment his opponents with his annoying lines, and before the fight he has already beaten them in their minds. Ali would have them swinging out of anger, and they would tire out extremely early. Ali even told some guys which round he was planning to knock them out in. Some say he was too prideful, that may be true, but I say Ali was extremely wise.
I thank God through Jesus Christ our Lord. So then with the mind I myself serve the law of God; but with the flesh the law of sin. (Romans 7:25)
If you could understand that, please understand this: the battle is won in your mind. If you think you can succeed and you keep telling yourself you can, then you will. If you think you will fail, and walk with a defeated mind, then you will lose. Ali didn’t just annoy his opponents, he made himself more confident knowing that he doesn’t even have to swing a punch but his opponent is mentally defeated! I pray that us as believers learn from this man! It is time to wake up everyday and look the devil in the face and say “you can throw your weapons at me, but they won’t prosper”, “you can tempt me with pornography, but I am not looking”, and you can even say “nice blow, but now that I’m more dependent on Jesus, you can come with your best shot and I am not falling down again!”, “I know what the doctor sees, but my God is bigger than any disease!” Too many of us want to win the battle, but we walk around as if we don’t have power from God. Wake up, walk in your authority!
But now thus saith the Lord that created thee, O Jacob, and he that formed thee, O Israel, Fear not: for I have redeemed thee, I have called thee by thy name; thou art mine. (Isaiah 43:1)
Anyone who doesn’t know their worth, will easily allow themselves to be defined and labeled by people. People that have no clue of their purpose usually become lost in the crowd and never fulfill their purpose on this earth. That does not have to be you if you choose to seek God through His Word. When you seek Him, you will understand who you are, Whose you are, and why you are here. When you begin to say “I am…(something)…”, you attract whatever it is you say and you will eventually be that by your faith. So please, be careful what you speak over yourself and others.
Death and life are in the power of the tongue: and they that love it shall eat the fruit thereof. (Proverbs 18:21)
Remember, it’s not what they call you, it’s what you answer to. When people say hateful things and you get angry, part of you may think it’s true. Someone can call me a thief all they want, but I won’t feel guilty or upset since I do not steal. Too many of us live for man’s acceptance, but in return we will die from their rejection. Their isolation will destroy us mentally, emotionally and even spiritually. That is why we must all know that our worth and significance is in Jesus. Do not think it is in a person, because if they were ever to walk away, die, divorce you or you just grow apart, that means part of you will never be complete. Our value is in Jesus.
This may be crazy to some of you, but I want to challenge you to write down 5 things (on paper, phone wallpaper, iPad, or anywhere you will see it again like on your refrigerator) that God says about you and I want you to repeat them in the morning, night, in the car, or whenever you have time. If you are a person that is sick, make sure one of your 5 is, “I am healed”. Try this for one week and have faith, watch your situation begin to line up with God’s Word.
My list of daily declarations (Just 5):
1. I am the head and not the tail.
2. I am no slave to sin, I am loosed because of Jesus.
3. My family will be saved.
4. I am a lender, not a borrower.
5. I am a carrier of God and I will spread His Word.
– Tovares Grey

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Give a Little More

One of the most dangerous places someone can find themselves in is a state of complacency. It’s hard to become a great athlete while settling as an average player. It’s hard to lose weight while being comfortable on the couch eating fast food. It’s even harder trying to trying to get a job without filling out a job application. The point is this, no one can become come great or experience something greater, while they continually settle in their current state. “Hard work beats talent, when talent doesn’t work hard”.
Woe to them that are at ease in Zion…. (Amos 6:1)
All of my previous examples were physical, but please, let’s take a quick spiritual look. How many of us claim we want a deeper relationship with God but spend little time with Him? How many of us want to know more about God, but we just do not read His Word for ourselves? Maybe you even want to hear God’s voice, but are you listening in prayer or just talking? You see, God is not running away from us, it’s just our actions aren’t always pursuing Him. God wants a relationship with us, but sometimes we are listening so much to people and focused on the world that we fail to hear God calling us. God knows you say you love Him, but do your actions prove it?
This people draweth nigh unto me with their mouth, and honoureth me with their lips; but their heart is far from me. (Matthew 15:8)
Now is the best time to make a decision that you are going to chase God. You may have failed yesterday and you will make a mistake again in the future, but now is the best time to recommit your life to pursuing God. God knows whether we love Him or not, because Jesus said it is our actions that proves whether or not we love Him (John 14:15). Our tweets, church attendance and Christian pictures mean nothing if we aren’t obeying God’s Word.
But the Lord said unto Samuel, Look not on his countenance, or on the height of his stature; because I have refused him: for the Lord seeth not as man seeth; for man looketh on the outward appearance, but the Lord looketh on the heart. (1 Samuel 16:7)
Sunday isn’t the only day that God wants your worship. Let it be your lifestyle, not a weekend activity. We have to quit ignoring God because we want to watch our favorite show. We cannot keep listening to music that goes against His Word. Why should we even spend all of our time with people that push us away from Him? God is not a part-time saviour, so we shouldn’t be part-time Christians. I don’t expect everyone to just stay home and literally pray and read the Bible all day, but we should try to keep our minds on Jesus all day (Philippians 4:8). Wherever you go and whatever you do, do it so that God can get the glory (Colossians 3:17).
Little children, keep yourselves from idols. Amen. (1 John 5:21)
Don’t let your social networks or technology replace God in your life. Don’t let your friends, spouse, etc. get more of your attention than Jesus. Stay away from things that consume way too much of your time. Christians aren’t always losing focus because of “sins”, but sometimes because of television. Too much of anything can ultimately distract you from what matters most, Jesus.
Wherefore seeing we also are compassed about with so great a cloud of witnesses, let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which doth so easily beset us, and let us run with patience the race that is set before us, (Hebrews 12:1)
Relationships:
> Which one of you will love a relationship where the other person doesn’t communicate with you? If they never ask to go on dates, if they never seek your attention, or if they don’t even compliment you, you’d most likely assume that their priorities are elsewhere. Or am I exaggerating? Maybe not.
> We all know that one “friend” who only remembers us when they want something…. So does Jesus.
> In order to have more meaningful and healthy relationships, we all must listen more and talk less, pray more and fight less, apologize more and quit letting pride get the best of us. These same principles apply with God. Jesus wants our heart, not a “religious to-do list”. Pray? Check! Read some verses? Check! NO, how about simply being consumed with God so that everything we do revolves around Him?
Today is the best day to choose to seek God more in your life. Maybe 10 minutes more a day could allow God to work on your behalf. Maybe reading one more chapter a day could open your eyes to God’s will for your life. You may not understand it now, but studying God’s Word will both help you and those you come into contact with. Will you give Jesus more of your life today?
Seek ye the Lord while he may be found, call ye upon him while he is near: (Isaiah 55:6)
God deserves more time than Sunday.
– Tovares Grey

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Stay Hungry for God's Word

No man can survive too long without food. Even if one decides to go on a fast, they will become hungry at some point. The bible says when Jesus finished fasting He was hungry after (Matthew 4:2). If we want to live we must eat, and not just anything, but healthy food.
If a person decides to eat fast food on a continual basis this person will jeopardize their health. Junk food will always taste and look nice, or else no one will purchase it; which is why we must go by what we know is right, not by what tastes nice. If you watch children, only a few will turn down fast food or candy. Parents and siblings must know to feed them healthy, home-cooked meals because even though there are several options, not everything is good for their health.
But he answered and said, It is written, Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that proceedeth out of the mouth of God. (Matthew 4:4)
Without the Word of God, we are going to be lost, unstable and weak Christians. The bible says that God’s people perish for lack of knowledge (Hosea 4:6). The devil does not have the power to destroy a child of God, Jesus gave us power over all of his weapons (Luke 10:19). The problem is, you cannot overcome what you entertain. We often say we want to overcome sin, but we don’t make the effort (at least not consistently). God’s word never said to crucify the devil, it said to crucify our own flesh. The devil is not our problem, we are our problem. We hold ourselves back from what God has for us when we choose to entertain what the devil offers. The devil can’t make you sin and God cannot make you live upright, it’s a choice. Furthermore, you can’t be protected without a shield. When the devil tempted Jesus, He didn’t sin, speak in tongues, sing a worship song, or even call an elder. Jesus told the devil “it is written” each time he tempted Him (Matthew 4:1-11). Not because Jesus was bragging on His knowledge, but because Jesus knows we overcome the devils works by the Word of God. The bible says if you resist the devil he will flee, but it first says to submit to God (James 4:7). To submit to God is to submit to His Word.
And they that are Christ’s have crucified the flesh with the affections and lusts. (Galatians 5:24)
– We have to die daily. Die to our sinful nature, if we do not make the consistent effort to get rid of our old habits, they will come right back. Different person, situation, or test, but the same results.
– God cannot fully manifest Himself to us if we are carnally minded. Carnal Christians cannot please God (Romans 8:6-8).
– When our flesh decreases, God’s spirit increases (John 3:30).
The bible says we serve God with our mind (Romans 7:25). That is why the devil attacks the mind of a believer. You may be gifted, anointed, and chosen by God, but if the devil can convince you that sin is fine he has done his job. If he can convince you that you’ll never be good enough, he has won the battle over your mind. If he ever makes you feel that you are your mistake, he has you beaten. The devil is not upset when people go to church, just as long as when they leave they are still mean, fornicating, prideful, watching pornography, still not praying, not tithing, not forgiving, bitter, disobedient, etc. We must understand that this is why God wants more than church attendance, He wants to dwell within us. So that when you are tempted to curse, He can hold your tongue. When you want to fornicate, He can say “no, I’m saving you for someone special.” With His spirit within us, we have power over sin. Sin no longer has dominion over us, Jesus broke that curse!
Why is God’s word so important?
1. If we hear and don’t apply we are fooling ourselves (James 1:22).
2. It is used to correct, teach, rebuke, and to help us grow in righteousness (2 Timothy 3:16).
3. It will cleanse us if we obey it (Psalms 119:9).
4. We must obey it to show Jesus that we love Him (John 14:15).
5. It is where we find our identity or else society will define us (1 Peter 2:9).
6. Those who love God’s Word have GREAT peace (Psalms 119:165).
7. It reassures you that Christ doesn’t condemn you when you fail (Romans 8:1).
8. It reminds us that God has wonderful plans for us (Jeremiah 29:11).
9. It tells us that God is able to come through for us (Ephesians 3:20).
10. Most importantly, it reassures of God’s endless love for us (Jeremiah 31:3).
The bible is made to transform your life, not just inform you when you are bored. Many books are being published and people are using those as substitutes for God’s word. Those books are full of information, but they can’t do what God can. I can write several books to bring you to tears or strengthen your walk in Christ, but until we start focusing on God’s word we will not experience change. I may be alone in this, but mediocrity is starting to be annoying. I was listening to some people at church and heard them mentioning great people who have been in our church. It left me with the question, what am I willing to do to leave an impact on the generation behind me? We must be willing to stop talking about it and be about it.
Many want to be saved from Hell, but not from sin. Let us get back into God’s word and prayer, that is the only way to know how to live and how to please God. If we don’t feed our spirit with God’s Word, we are dying spiritually. We may be ministering and sharing powerful tweets/statuses/blogs/sermons, but there’s no relationship with God without knowing His word and prayer. Chances are, if you aren’t hungry for God’s Word, you could be hungry for something else. Let’s not be distracted by these earthly, temporal things. Let us seek the Kingdom of God. God bless!
– Tovares Grey

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Temporary Loss for an Eternal Gain

“Come, follow me.” – Jesus. If you are reading this blog, you are either a Christian or God is calling you to His kingdom now. We have all either answered God’s call or are still contemplating. Should I? Should I not? I don’t want to get saved and have to leave the church. Should I turn to God and then be a hypocrite because I can’t live a perfect life? These questions are all normal, but just remember this: You cannot clean up your act before you come to Christ, He is the one that will change you. You will never be “ready”, its just something you have to do and allow God to take control. God loves you enough to take you the way you are, but He loves you too much to leave you that way. We only mess up when we don’t allow God to take complete control and we try to run the show.
All of us have been in relationships (whether it being family, dating/marriage, or coworkers/classmates), and we have all known that a relationship is a two way street. If you want the relationship to work and grow, you’ll have to sacrifice. More time to listen to one another, help one another, give to one another and even correct one another in love. The point is, love is a sacrifice. God loved us all on the earth but no one would have believed He cared if He didn’t let Jesus die for our sins. No one will believe their partner cares if they never listen, never show affection or even help. God knew love required a sacrifice. That’s why if we love God, we must sacrifice some things.
If ye love me, keep my commandments. (John 14:15)
– If we never obey God, we don’t really love Him. We may be infatuated, but the truth is, we sometimes like what we can get, not who He is.
– Loving God means loving what He loves and hating what He hates.
– The same way God sent the ultimate sacrifice, is the same way we must sacrifice our old lifestyles for a genuine relationship with God.
– We can’t be the bride of Christ while dating satan. Break up with sin so you can find true life in Christ.
If you’re a Christian and it didn’t cost you anything, then something is very wrong. Here are a few things that must take place in the life of a believer:
1. You should not be equally yoked with unbelievers (2 Corinthians 6:14)
2. You should come out of the crowd and live consecrated/transformed lives (Romans 12:2 & 2 Corinthians 6:17-18)
3. The world will hate you for looking, talking, and living differently (John 15:18)
4. We will have stay away from sinful things that try to break us down spiritually (1 Peter 2:11)
5. We will have to love those who hate and mistreat us (Matthew 5:44)
6. Even though we are living righteous, we will experience troubles (Psalm 34:19)
7. We will have to run away from fornication (1 Corinthians 6:18)
8. We MUST kill our sinful desires (Galatians 5:24)
9. We cannot love this world or the things of the world (1 John 2:15)
10. We will experience traumatic losses, but we must trust God’s plan and not get angry at Him (Job 1:22)
Whoever said the Christian life was always easy lied, but it is always worth it.
For I reckon that the sufferings of this present time are not worthy to be compared with the glory which shall be revealed in us. (Romans 8:18)
– Whatever we go through is NOTHING, compared to what Christ has in store for us. We just have to be willing to say “not my will, but thine be done”.
– Tovares Grey

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