Praise Works

Praise Works is a personal devotional to God. It contains meditations, prayer, praise, thoughts and even rants to God. Its purpose is to be consistent in relationship with God through a written log exchange. While this is personal, perhaps others will be inspired.

Sunday, June 25, 2006

God Makes It Easy to Sacrifice Big

Thank you Lord, that when you ask those of us who truly love you, who have received your word to sacrifice big, you make it easy.

When you ask for a big sacrifice - our time or our finances - even though we know you blessed us with both time and money, it can be hard to make the sacrifice. Yet when you ask for a big one and the ones who will respond are already known and chosen by you, God I thank you that you make it easy. God, you make it joyful because you said to give with a joyful heart.

So those of us that need a big miracle - biblically and often by the pastor's urging - we need a big sacrifice. But you never ask for something that we do not have to give up. And you never ask for something that we cannot make the choice to do.

And God, I thank you, for blessing us with the vision, with receiving the prophecy, and with a joyful heart to give the sacrifice. Because if we are to sacrifice then we are to praise. And there cannot be praise if there is a heart that refuses to push past bitterness and resentment at the sacrifice.

God I thank you for making big sacrifices easy with putting in us not only the vision and the instruction to sacrifice big - but also the joyful heart. The joyful heart comes after making the decision. God I thank you - for blessing us with the ability to choose your way. So I thank you Lord and I praise and bless your holy name.

To God be the glory forever and ever. Amen.

Write It Down and Make It Plain

Thank you Lord, for giving me the vision and the instructions to write the vision down and make it plain as you have instructed us in your Word in Habakkuk 2.

Thank You Lord for Breaking the Bonds of Financial Brokedness and Saving My Family

I will not only start giving financially believing it as a seed, but every time I do it, I will thank and praise the Lord and say, "Thank you Lord for breaking the bonds of financial brokedness. Thank you Lord for saving my family. Amen."

And if my seed is small, I shall respond with "As you have said, a faith as small as a mustard seed can move mountains. And by faith, I thank you Lord for breaking the bonds of financial brokedness. Thank you for saving my family. Amen."

Saturday, June 24, 2006

Prophesying Financial Ownership & Stewardship

One of the constant, daily obstacles, it seems, is finances. Some pastors say you can sow your way into the Kingdom. There is biblical truth to that and as they will point out, in almost all cases of miracles in the Old Testament and the New Testament, God required a sacrifice.

Abraham was required to sacrifice his only begotten, promised son Isaac. The woman and son who entertained Elijah was asked to sacrifice the small amount of meal they had to make bread for Elijah first. In such instances, the blessings from the sacrifice were immensely big. Yet clearly, both Abraham and the woman knew enough about God to trust the Lord in providing the miracle.

In Scripture, God said to bring a SACRIFICE OF PRAISE. Yes, God dwells in our praises as the Word says.

I believe that it is imperative to sow into the Kingdom, to sacrifice an offering and PRAISE.

Yet, another thing I've realized is that even though prosperity preachers have been villified, every time they speak such things, it is up to me to receive it as prophecy.

I need to receive it as them prophesying. Even though some of them are agents of the enemy, when God created us, He blessed us with the ability to speak life into things.

So #1 I must receive prosperity messages of getting wealth as prophecy. And #2 I must KNOW MORE.

As I said before, how can I possess something if I do not know about it? How can God bless me with wealth if I do not understand the value of money, wealth management, and financial stewardship?

I must know how to manage my own budget and I must learn about finances and wealth management and investment in order to prepare myself properly.

I can then be confident that God will be pouring into a responsible, strong, and worthy vessel when He unleases the blessings He's stored for me - as I have sown and praised Him for.

Eyes have not seen, Ears have not heard - therefore, I can be confident that I can and should do these steps:

#1 Know and Accept that sowing a seed offering is God's Kingdom Economics (Kingdomonics)
#2 Know and Accept that a seed is a sacrifice and that a sacrifice requires praise because God said to bring a sacrifice of praise; so I must sow and sacrifice a praise - because God dwells in our praise
#3 I must accept prosperity messages as prophesy - they are prophesying into my life
#5 I must actively KNOW MORE - both of God and of finances - to receive wealth and financial blessings

Paula White Prophesying Internet Ownership

Pastor Paula White was recently at Bethany Baptist Church's Power of God Convocation. On the night she spoke, one thing - and granted this is taken out of context because she was working up the crowd but nevertheless she spoke it - she said (to the effect) we'll own the Internet.

Since my company is Servaunt - an interactive solutions agency - I was very much receiving her prophetic word. By her speaking it, just speaking what was on my mind and but not yet spoken, I received it as prophecy.

She, a believer, spoke it, and as God has promised us, we have what we speak. We have the power of life and death in our tongues. We can speak and ask for it, and believe it. That is faith - to speak and believe as if it were so, even if it weren't so, that it might be so (something my pastor uses).

I believe it. I receive this as a prophetic word.

I believe it is time that the saints of God take greater hold of the Internet. And I believe that saints of God must first receive this word as a prophetic word. Then, go out and learn more about the Internet. My pastor said that to have more of God and God's blessings - the blessings of Abraham that He promised - we need to KNOW MORE.

I believe that is also the case of the Internet. We as saints must KNOW MORE about the Internet. How can you possess something you do not know? Therefore, we must know more.

I see that one of the greatest challenges of possessing the Internet is the porn industry. One of the greatest drivers and curses of the Internet is porn. Adult porn is easy to get - but in a way, adults are adults. Child pornography, however, is too facilitated by the Internet.

Yet, the pornographers are the ones who are at the cutting edge of Internet communication technology. They are the ones who are quick to adapt new emerging technologies.

They were the first ones to game the search engines, stuffing keywords, performing cloaking, and other methods that are now well known search engine spamming methods.

They were the first to conduct email spam, create malware, adware, and learn to combine adult affiliate programs with spam.

Now, they are the ones on the cutting edge of using porn video podcasts and even videos for PSPs!

Yet, where are the saints of God? As children of God, the darkness cannot be tolerated to know more, to adapt more, and be richer than us. Yes, as God promised, the riches of the wicked are stored for the righteous.

But, how can God release these to the saints if the saints do not know more? We must know more of God to spiritually shore us up and bless us with spiritual riches, and we must know more about the material thing that we have an expectation of God to bless us with.

I am convinced that God requires us to know more, be more aware and active in knowing the technologies out there. And from there, He will bless us with ability and empowerment to utilize all of these technologies for His glory. And He will bless us with the ability to seek out, identify, and quickly adapt new technology developments - for His glory!

To God be the glory forever and ever, Amen!

Monday, May 15, 2006

Serving a Ministry is Tithing, Praise, and Worship

I am thankful that I am able to serve in ministries that I care about and have a passion for. To me, ministry is both for someone else's benefit and my own. Sometimes it takes other circumstances to for me to see that.

I had a somewhat difficult conversation with a friend the other day. What started out as me encouraging her go back to the choir which she had left, turned into a heated discussion.

She had left the church - personal circumstances - and was gone for about a year before returning back. I encouraged her to join the choir again. Her response was that she didn't see any benefit to her.

Much of her response was self-centric (not self-centered, centric!). She questioned if it would make a difference. She thought her voice wouldnt make the choir stronger and that she would not have a solo. She questioned the politics behind the ministry's management. It was disturbing to me because the reasons against it were so emotionally visceral. To me there was clearly some damage behind it.

I pointed out to her that she may not think others would be ministered but that she never knows who observes her. There are people who scan the choir and could latch on to her singing, her ministering, and be led out of something they are struggling with.

My friend said that she knows she still has issues and that she's happier singing in the congregation and worshipping than she is up there with the choir. And perhaps that is exactly what she needs - alone time. She recently came back - so in a way, she is like the prodigal son returning. She needs the alone time to be ministered to by God - and not out there ministering. After all, you cannot give what you do not possess.

My friend pointed out that her work is her ministry and that her life is a ministry - and I agree with her. All of that is true - but so is ministry in service a church.

What it came down to was that she did not believe it would make a difference. And the bottom line is, if you cannot believe it, you cannot receive it.

I personally believe ministry is important to a Chrisitan's walk. I believe that the ministrial service you provide, that you sacrifice for, opens doors that you cannot possibly imagine or see. I believe that when you show favor to a person, God shows favor on you. When you show mercy, God shows mercy. When you show service, God shows provision.

So, I thank God for the ministries He has me serving. They are a blessing. They keep me busy and they open opportunities for me.

Thank you, Lord. To God be the glory forever and ever.

Saturday, May 06, 2006

Being a Part of Something Big: A Sunday in April

My company, Servaunt, is involved in a big project. Our friend is launching his music ministry this year and he has gathered a group of talented people to help him launch his ministry.

Servaunt, naturally, is building the website and the "marketing". The other people involved include a photographer, an image consultant, a director, a camera expert, a PR expert, a church events organizer, and countless other people providing this ministry with favor.

What is amazing to see is that this ministry's goal is first and foremost to use music convey the concept of liberty and freedom through praise and worship. Our friend's passion is that the music reaches people of all nations, all backgrounds, all skin color, and reach the unsaved.

It's amazing to see this passion reflected in the energy in everyone involved.

On April 30, 2006, this ministry did its first photoshoot. We were blessed to have a chique Philadelphia restaurant close on a busy Sunday just so we can have the restaurant to ourselves. The lighting and the restaurant's setting was absolutely beautiful.

No time was wasted as the women involved were quickly ready with their hair and makeup. The men were quickly dressed and touched up. The photographer quickly set up his equipment. When it was time to shoot group pictures, everyone quickly got into place. When it was time to shoot individual pictures, no one wasted time.

Even during the down times, no one grumbled. In fact, some of the ministry members sat and sang praise songs.

What was amazing to me was seeing how people worked together for something bigger than themselves. It was clear that the Holy Spirit was present with us that day. Things worked smoothly, effectively, and with excellence. Even now, still, all involved are working hard, working towards excellence.

Too often I feel selfish and uncooperative. I know that is not of God - just my flesh. I have to be continually mindful and remember what I witnessed that Sunday in April. When working as unto God, and striving towards excellence - with a single mind, a single passion, and leaving it all to God - we honor God. And when we honor God, God honors us.

And ultimately, for me, the most important thing is that my life, my character, what I say and do, brings honor and glory to God. I am not perfect and never will be until I come to glory in His presence, but as long as I am here, the best that I can do is to choose God's way, and do everything to bring glory to His name.

So as always, to God be the glory forever and ever.

Praise Works Launched

This new blog is really my own personal devotional, meditations, thoughts, even rants to God. Along the lines of AK Works, I figured I'd call this one Praise Works.

The "works" means a lot of things but I focus on a select few meanings:
  • praise works = n. my own personal acts of praise - doing, a job, a duty and activity: the acts, the job, the duty of praise
  • praise works = v. the act of praising God works for my benefit
  • praise works = n. highlighting events, sermons, news, and other things that praise God; highlighting opportunities and revelations to praise God.
For me this personal devotion is a way for me to keep focused on God because the things I am involved in can carry me away from what I should do. So since I've gotten used to blogging more frequently, I am using this blog as a way for my own spiritual growth.

This is also probably one of the ways to use blogs in its "purest" form - as a weblog or online diary.

I expect that I am one of the legions of faithful using this new technology to help in their faith walk. So I give God the glory and pray that some of them go on to be power bloggers whose blogs will lead many others to Christ. I pray that others who come across this and other similar blogs are inspired to choose God.

To God be the glory forever and ever.