Let God Refresh and Recharge your Soul

If you are like me, the past few months dealing with the pandemic and other major issues has been difficult …we have worried some, prayed a lot more, adapt and adjusted to changing schedules and daily routines, being concerned about all the hurting people in our country and the world, doing the right thing, helping where we can etc..It is easy to become overwhelmed by it all and become exhausted emotionally and spiritually. We need to regain and continue to maintain our spiritual stamina, so we won’t give into doubt and discouragement.

Just like Moses and the Israelites, we are wandering in the wilderness of not knowing what is going to happen next. Just as they needed manna from God each day to survive and stay strong, we also need a daily dose of reading the manna of God’s Word. I really like how Carolyn Naoroji stresses the importance of this in our lives…”God’s Word is a living water that detoxifies our soul. The more we drink it, the more it cleanses, refreshes, and renews us.”

I have found the more I read and study God’s Word it increases my appetite for it, but if I spend less time in it will actually lessen my desire to focus on the right things spiritually. We must consistently cultivate this healthy habit in order to continually be transformed by God’s grace into the kind of people God created us to be. Billy Graham noted that “The Bible is the constant fountain for faith, conduct, and inspiration from which we drink daily.”

There is no excuse for us, with the amount of resources available at our fingertips to study and apply God’s Word in our daily lives. We have printed books and materials available, apps (a very good app is from http://www.OnePlace.com ) for our smart phones and iPads. You can go online and participate in a Bible study or at your local church. Why should we continue to struggle in our faith by ignoring what will help it grow? I am currently doing several things, I read several free devotional emails I get everyday from Christian writers and Bible teachers, (my favorites right now are Daily Hope by Rick Warren at PastorRick.com and New Life Daily Devotional at http://www.newlife.com. ) As far as daily devotional books, I like to read Sarah Young’s “Jesus Calling” and “ Jesus Always”. I also like to read “Lived Loved” by Max Lucado. Also by Max Lucado is particularly helpful Bible Study during these difficult times that we all are going through is the book “ You Will Get Through This” which is based on the life of Joseph in the Old Testament. He experienced so many set backs, and personal difficulties to eventually become second in command to the Pharaoh in ancient Egypt. I also like to pick a topic such as Faith, Hope, Wisdom, Peace, Love and look up the individual Bible verses that describe that topic, if you have a Study Bible, there is usually topical index in the back. One of my favorite Study Bibles is the “Life Application Study Bible” that is available in several translations. Bible Gateway has an easy to use website for Bible verses topics, it is BibleGateway.com . The key is to search and find out what currently will work best for you to stay spiritually refreshed. My prayer for you and me is that we will continue to grow stronger in our faith now and in the days ahead…When we get through this difficult season in our lives, may be able to look back and say, yes it was a tough time but we got closer to God through it all and He helped us in so many special ways. ..

“The Lord will guide you continually, giving you water when you are dry, and restoring your strength. You will be like a well-watered garden, like an ever-flowing spring.” – Isaiah 58:11

Our Disappointments can lead us…to God’s Appointments

We all face disappointments in our lives. How we respond to those is very important. The Apostle Paul in the Bible shares how he often saw his personal disappointments as opportunities for God to use him to bless others, in a different way when he said…”Pray for me, too. Ask God to give me the right words so I can boldly explain God’s mysterious plan that the Good News is for Jews and Gentiles alike. I am in chains now, still preaching this message as God’s ambassador. So pray that I will keep on speaking boldly for Him, as I should.” – Ephesians 6: 19-20 ( NLB).

Paul saw his disappointments as God’s appointments for something better to further God’s purpose and plan in his life. That is a great attitude for us to have as well. What we may consider a detour or inconvenience may be the Lord simply organizing things a different way to do something much more important.

I remember one particular day when I was delayed in traffic while making my rounds visiting people in the hospitals and I was way behind in “my” schedule. As I walked into the hospital lobby, an unknown person approached me crying and said to me : ” You don’t know me but God sent you here. We just got some bad news about my child and I was so upset I left the room asking God to send us someone to pray with us. I recognized you from your church’s TV ministry, can you come pray with our family.?”… Wow, I was overwhelmed at how God placed me there at that precise time to minister to that family because I was running late on “my” schedule. After praying with them that day, I followed up with them later and was thankful to find out that their son had recovered and was home doing much better.

Are your dealing with delays and disappointments today? Don’t give up or give in to discouragement. Look at them as opportunities for God to do something different and special. Don’t limit God to just your personal plan and wishes . As has been in my past experience, I have discovered that often our disappointments can lead us eventually to God’s appointment for something much better, if we will simply continue to trust Him and continue to do and be our best. It may take a while, but in the meantime we can not go wrong by continuing to have faith in the Lord. We can trust in Him, even when we don’t understand everything. God reminds us : ” For My thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways, My ways declares the Lord. As the heavens are higher than the earth, so are My ways higher than your ways and My thoughts higher than your thoughts.” Isaiah 55: 8-9 ( NIV).

Making a Positive Impact in our World

I have always wanted to be outstanding in some field. This is a photo of a field I discovered while taking a morning walk on a local country road (LOL). Seriously though, I think we all have an inborn desire to live a life with purpose, a field of dreams to make a positive difference in the lives of others. The reality is that we already have a field of influence in and through our relationships. It really doesn’t matter how big or small it is, it matters more about what we do with it.


It starts with asking the right questions of ourselves, such as…What is our motivation? Is it to help ourselves more than helping others? It is important that it is to be more about being helpful for others than just an opportunity for us to pat ourselves on our backs.


Mother Teresa said this “I look at the individual. I can only love one person at a time.” Because of her focus on the individual, her compassion grew to become an incredible outreach that cares for the sick and helpless people around the world today. Start with those people you already know about that may need your help. If everyone did just that, how much better would our world be? Let your acts of kindness grow and develop as you pray specifically about who you can help in some way that is unique to you.


You have special gifts and God given talents that can be a conduit of kindness, that can be encouraging for others. You may consider doing some simple things like… take a meal, get a gift card, write a text or encouraging email or note to someone you know is having a difficult time. Call them and check on them. What is so exciting is that in the process of praying for people that God will sometimes gives you some specific thoughts and ideas about how to help them. It may be financially, volunteering to help them or connecting them to someone who is knowledgable and has experience in dealing with their current needs and issues. We don’t have all the pieces to the puzzle in someone else’s situation, but we can do our part and roles to be a piece of the bigger picture for their emotional and spiritual health and their overall well being. These are the the kind of investments that we can continue to make that will have a positive and lasting impact in our world by Praying > Caring > and Sharing with others!

Thanks for the Memories…Coach Johnny Majors

Johnny Majors, a Tennessee legend. He was an All-American Football player at UT. I enjoyed hearing him talked about when he went to school at University of Tennessee, he was undersized for a typical college player but made up for it by determination, hard work, toughness and his love for the game. He was also a successful college football coach at Iowa State, the University of Pittsburg, and at the University of Tennessee. He made a difference wherever he went, turning around those football programs that had fallen on tough times. I got to meet him on several occasions through the years, he always remembered me that I was from the Baptist Church in Sevierrville. He had an incredible memory and had a special way about him, that made you feel like a friend.

I wonder what kind of impact do we have?

Do we make things better?

Are we determined to be the best we can be?

Are we willing to work to turn things around for the better wherever we go?

We need more people to do just that, especially as our country recovers from the pandemic and other difficult issues now and in the days ahead. May we all do our part, like coach Majors did.