Pastor’s Pen

Strengthened To Stand with Shane & Becky Browndividerbar 

What Did I Do Wrong?

As kids, did you ever get in trouble and wonder what you did wrong? We often feel that way as adults when it comes to God. Bad things happen and we find ourselves asking God, “What did I do wrong? What did I do to deserve this?” Furthermore, the more we do right (or try to do right), the more trials we are faced with. Sound familiar?
Job experienced this, as we know too well. He loved the Lord with all of his heart, and everything was going right for him–until it wasn’t. Job did nothing to cause such destruction to his life. Rather, God saw an opportunity to show Job, his family, his friends, as well as the devil, what he was truly made of. God offered Job to the enemy (Job 1:8), and said he could do anything to him, except take his life. Have you ever felt like you’ve been put through the ringer, and you didn’t really understand why? I’m sure Job felt that way as well. Nevertheless, Job continued to trust in God (Job 13:15) through all the hell that was surrounding him. After all was said and done, God doubled what Job had lost.
You may say, “but why?” God knew Job was strong enough to handle the schemes of the devil, just like he knows you are strong enough to handle what you are going through. No, it’s not easy, even uncomfortable perhaps. Nevertheless, the plan of God outweighs the pain of our circumstance because the pain is temporary, but His plan is forever. You are stronger than you think, stronger than your family and friends think, and stronger than the devil himself thinks. Don’t count yourself out, just because bad circumstances arise. Endure through the pain until God’s plan unfolds, and you’ll see the strength that you had through God while receiving double for your trouble!


Running For The Prize

Pressing through, pushing forward, moving on. All of these come with resistance. Regardless of the situation, in order to get past it, there will always be an opposing force. The situation may be death of loved ones, divorce, unemployment, or just spiritual warfare in general. No matter the reason, in order to get to the next level and come out of the pit we are in, we must keep our eyes on the prize.
“Running for the prize” is difficult indeed, with many stumbling blocks along the way. The stumbling blocks could be people, our jobs, our finances, or even our minds. We know that the greatest battle is always in our minds, because one thought can change your world. If you believe that God is going to get you through your current situation, then half the battle is already won.
Our thought process will make us or break us. Meaning, if we don’t trust and believe that God is who He says He is, and can do what He says He can do, then we have stumbled on our journey, lying on the path that leads to our destiny. We, in fact, delay our arrival to our appointed destiny, all because of our thoughts. Alternatively, if we take God at His Word, regardless if we trip or stumble, we make it a point to get back up, and keep going, then we overcome the “resistance”. Sometimes, a thought will determine your ETA (estimated time of arrival) to your destiny.
Some folks like taking the scenic route, focusing on what they see opposed to the end result. If your destiny is being delayed, take a look at your thought process, and analyze if you’re taking a scenic route, or the fast path to your destiny! It all depends on your thoughts!
Never give up!
Becky Brown


The Strategy Of A Giant Killer

When I was a little, one of the first passages of scripture I learned was Psalms 23. Yes, it is a short chapter having only six verses, but what power and promise this chapter contains!
  1. The Lord is my shepherd; I shall not want.
  2. He maketh me to lie down in green pastures; he leadeth me beside the still waters.
  3. He restoreth my soul; he leadeth me in the paths of righteousness for his name’s sake.
  4. Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of the death, I will fear no evil: for thou art with me; thy rod and thy staff they comfort me.
  5. Thou preparest a table before me in the presence of mine enemies: thou anointest my head with oil; my cup runneth over.
  6. Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me all the days of my life: and I will dwell in the house of the Lord forever.
If we reflect on the promises given in these verses, my how our attitudes would change! David is telling us that God is a provider in all things! Green pastures mean that we will be hydrated and filled with God’s best. Have you ever seen grass in a drought? Not so appealing, is it? However, David tells of God’s abundance, peace, and restoration that only He can provide. David further reminds us that yes, we will go through some dark times, but the dark times will not take us out! We may not have a rod or a staff in our hands at the moment, but we do have the Word of God! Furthermore, the rod and the staff in David’s hand was a reminder to him of what God did in the past. Sometimes, we have to rehearse our victories from the past, so that we get that needed boost for what we are facing today.
The best part is this: when we come through our tests, our enemies will be present for not only our victory, but they will also witness our spiritual promotion! How good is God?? If you’re rattled by your current situation, stand tall and remember Psalms 23. If the enemy appears to be closing in, look for your table…
Never give up!
Becky Brown


Who Can You Trust?

Trust is an attribute that’s seldom given so freely. When you say you trust someone, you are putting your faith and hope in that person, leaving yourself vulnerable. After all, people are human, and they will mess up, whether they mean to or not. Many people are afraid to trust others, because of past experiences, past hurts, and circumstances. However, the Bible says to trust in God with all of your heart, leaning not to your own understanding (Prov. 3:5). How difficult is it to really trust God? Take a look at His reputation and whether or not He’s worthy of trust. Has He ever let you down? Has He ever told you He was going to do something, and backed out at the last minute? Or has He ever lied to you? If you answer honestly to these questions, they will all be ‘no’.
Sure, we would have handled things differently than God did, or done them sooner than He did. Yet, ultimately, the outcome and the timing was all for our good. Now, getting back to the trust issue. Have you ever known someone in your life that you can trust more than God? No, not even our closest friend, our spouse, our children, or anyone else. God is the only one with a flawless reputation that will go above and beyond our expectations. But, somehow, we still tend to find a person or people that we can put our trust in, knowing that we could (and probably will) get hurt or let down.
Now is the time and season to put ALL of our trust in God, being fully persuaded that what He promised, He is also able to perform, just as Abraham believed (Romans 4:21). Don’t put your trust in people or things, for they will let you down. Rather, put your trust in God and watch the impossible come alive!


When Waiting Is Tough

Have you ever prayed and asked God to handle a situation, and then moments later you tried to figure out the situation yourself? I think we are all guilty of that! Regardless of the severity of the circumstance, we tend to ask God to work it out, while we are going through the motions to fix it ourselves. Sometimes, we work against ourselves to solve the problems that God has already worked out. The real question is this–why are we asking God to help us out when we are really trying to help God out?
Our impatience gets the best of us when we don’t see quick results. Furthermore, the wait is often the very thing that drives us to react too quickly. Waiting on God exercises our faith and trust in Him, which is why some of us must go through the same trials over and over so that our “faith muscles” get strengthened.
Here’s a familiar scenario: we go to God in prayer, laying our cares and requests at the foot of the cross, asking God to intervene and do what only He can do. Prior to finishing our prayer, we gather up our cares and requests, packaging them on our backs, so that they remain in our possession. Now, what’s wrong with this picture? No wonder God makes us go through similar situations repeatedly. When will we learn?
Our trials are to point our focus on God and His strength, not ours. Even when we achieve this, we must learn to wait on God, knowing that every detail is being worked out in a way that only God can complete. When we try to handle things ourselves and help God out, God then takes a step back, allowing us to really see what we can and can’t do. God never requires our assistance, only our obedience. When we truly leave our cares with God, we must wait, regardless of time, and watch God move in a mighty way. Waiting is tough, but will be worth the effort when God brings forth His results!