Consumer VS. Producer

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The concept of Consumer vs. Producer might sound a little odd when equating with God; however, just stick with me for a moment while I grasp your attention, please…

A producer is someone who makes something for the good of another. A producer has a dream or a vision which they work toward. A producer is giving out, not taking, expending or exhausting the efforts of another. Producers have a passion for bringing forth, giving birth or putting together something for the well being of another.

A consumer is someone who takes something for the good of oneself. A consumer may not have a dream or a vision, they simply have a craving and desire for more of what they have. A consumer is taking in, not building, developing or yielding fruit. Consumers have a passion for engrossing, absorbing and even devouring what they have in front of them for the well being of themselves, sometimes, even to the detriment of another.

When it comes to our relationship with God, we can never out give or over produce what He has to supply for our lives. We can never pour out more than He can pour in; however, we can be all consuming of His goodness to the point of becoming “fat and happy” on the blessings of God, never giving to another, never reaching and never reproducing what we have found.

We must have a passion for reaching this world for Christ. We must have a desire to give to others the love and goodness we have found in Christ. We must have a vision to reproduce and give away this hope that only God can bring. When building His Kingdom becomes our goal, that is when we become producers for His glory.

So, I ask you which are you, a Consumer or a Producer?

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Power of Reflected Light

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The lighthouse has such a powerful light which shines across the sea; however, it’s actually not because of a particularly bright light bulb. Rather, it is because of the mirrors in place which cause the reflected light to shine brightly into darkness.

Just as a lighthouse is not bright simply because of a powerful light, a person cannot truly be strong simply because of his or her own strength, and a church cannot be strong simply because of a good program, a popular song service or even a great man behind the pulpit. When founded in Christ, the only true strength is when we reflect the praise we receive upon those with whom we are joined to minist, and reach those who are lost.

When the church body, the leadership, and the pastor are constantly reflecting upon each other all the light that is brought upon them, and especially when they are reflecting that light upon Jesus, the strength of that is enforced and brightened beyond imagination. We, as Christians, have too often, gotten into competitive relays with each other, always trying to better ourselves for the sake of gaining numbers, or taking them from another body of believers, rather than, bettering ourselves for the sake of our Christian walk and lifting Him up so that He might draw them to Himself. We’ve worked too hard to soak up the spotlight which has been show upon us rather than reflected that light upon those around us and upon Christ. Let us each learn a lesson from the beautiful lighthouse!

The power of reflected praise: Any praise you get should be reflected onto someone else! The church grows stronger by the power of reflected light!

*note: I did not take this picture, nor do I own this picture. Simply taken from google search. 😉

Gold All Around

He was born a dreamer. He has always dreamed big dreams. At the age of four, he was Batman, Spider-Man, policeman and cowboy, all combined within that sweet tiny frame; the image altering daily, depending upon the mood that day. When he turned nine, the superheroes had faded, and music had taken over. He was a “gangsta-rapper” one day and TobyMac or B-SHOC the next. Always dreaming of greatness, always hoping for the big stage, the bright lights, and the gold coins.

Today, his heart is set to the beat of a different drum. He doesn’t conform too much to those around him. He has his own style, his own fashion and his own swagger. He is his own man, and he loves it. He loves Jesus, and he doesn’t care who knows it. He wants others to see what he sees, feel what he feels.

Often, I see the little boy alive in his eyes, and my heart skips a beat for what once was. I see him shooting for the stars, and I pray he never stops or even hesitates. I see him making plans and setting aspirations into action, and I pray The Lord keeps him within His grasp, always leading and guiding him down the right path.

In those moments, I realize, this is what it’s all about: Dreams. Hopes. Aspirations. Reaching for something great. This is what brings about change. This is what brings about true freedom from conformity. This is what brings about new “life.” As a little child dreams, hope is birthed in the soul.

For if we fail to dream, if we fail to reach for the stars, something dies within. We must let the child live. We must cultivate those dreams of yesterday. Yeah, some things change, and life always moves on. Time never stops, but yet, if we don’t lose track of it in a dream, it surely does drag along. If we forget to get lost in the yester-years every once in a while, how will we ever remember how much has changed, and how will we ever see how far we’ve come?

So, dream on, my sweet child. Dream big. Plan long, and aspire for greatness! You can shoot for all the stars in the sky, and even if you don’t make it to the one in your sights, you’ll still get further than if you never reached for it to start. I see gold all around you, and I believe it’s because the stars are within your grasp. Let Him guide you to the right ones, and He will help you get there. When you do, just reach up and take hold. It’s yours for the dreaming, and when you’re amongst the stars, that’s when you’ll see the gold that I see all around you.

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I Wonder

People come and go.
They walk here. They walk there.
They ride. They run. They jump.
They stop.

Who are these beings?
Where are they going?
What are they thinking?
What have their eyes seen?

These things, I wonder as I walked by.

Will I wonder beyond?

Will I question?

Will I care?

Will I dare to make a bond?

Will I cry when they scream?
What are they doing?
Where are they going?
What does it all mean?

Will I confront their blues?
Will I smile at them?
Will I weep?
Will I share the good news?

Will I ponder better times?
What are they saying?
Why are they lost?
Will I give to them He who is Mine?

Penned – MG – 12/3/14

“Jesus answered, ‘I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.'”
John 14:6

The Tree Grew ‘Round

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Life is hard. It is what it is. There’s really no changing the way the earth spins on it’s axis or altering the person who lives in the house next door. You’re going to face hard times. I don’t care who you are, how much money you have, or how many people love you, you’re going to have disappointments in this life. You’re going to encounter obstacles in the road. It’s just the way it is, and if you haven’t had any troubles as of yet, well, just keep on living, because every elderly person on the planet can attest to this truth: Life is not always easy, and sometimes, we have to “weather through the storm.”

The question is not, “Will trials ever come?” The better question is, “What will I do when the rains do come?” If you can ever answer that question before the rains come, you will be much better suited to survive. It’s like building a shelter to be safe from the elements when you’re sleeping outside. If you build the shelter before you lie down to sleep, you’re sure to get some moments of restful sleep; however, if you never build the shelter, then, you’re left to survive whatever elements may come. The rains may come, but if you have a little shelter, it makes the night a little easier to endure.

Sometimes, in life, you’re just going to find yourself caught between a “rock and a hard place.” The rock won’t move, and the hard place won’t remove itself. Maybe it’s the day you woke up late for your new job, and your nine month old baby woke up with a stomach virus, or maybe you were laid off after just buying that brand new car. Maybe your mom has been diagnosed with stage 4 cancer, and your dad began showing signs of dementia last month. Maybe your oldest son has been struggling with a hidden drug addiction, trying to sneak around, stealing money from your nightstand, and your youngest daughter has been bullied at the new school. Maybe your husband seems to be distant, and you just can’t seem to find enjoyment in any of the past delights you two once had. There are times in life when you wish it could be different. You find yourself between a rock and a hard place. You wonder what you’re going to do, how are you ever going to make it?

In that moment, you have a choice to make. You can choose to stop, to hesitate, to allow the circumstances, those hard things, to stunt your growth and keep you from reaching your destiny. You can let that rock hinder you from reaching your dreams. You can even “fold over” on top of yourself and never move beyond where you were in that moment of crisis. Or, you can choose to press forward. You can choose to be like the tree in this picture that refused to be dwarfed by the rock in the path. You can choose to allow those tough spots to make you stronger, more resilient to the pain. You can choose to find joy in the little things, blessings in those people who surround you in that moment of heartache, and even, just peace in the gentle breeze that blows or warmth in the sun that shines. You can choose to grow ’round that rock that crept into your path on your way to greatness.

We all have choices which hold us back from our destiny or propel us toward our dreams. It’s up to us to choose, and when we make that choice of forward determination, our lives will be better for it. Let’s be those whose “life tree” may have twists and turns, bends and curves, but whose branches still reach around those hard places up toward the sky.
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Determination of A Boy

Where the beaches’ crowds move from day to day under the hot summer sun,

Hidden, I watch these people, I observe their styles and movements.

By the dunes toward the edge of the highway,

A little boy struggles to reach the top of these majestic mountains,

Sliding down time and again, he begins to cry in desperation,

With tear filled eyes he changes suddenly, as he regains his strength with wind blowing softly,

Forth issue² then with smiling face.

Determination of A Boy

 

The scene and all its belongings,³ how they entrance and bewilder me,

The bright young boy with a freckled face and a determined will, the sand dunes with their winded cover and cat-tailed lops

Both determined to reach their goal

The boy (typically energetic set in an enchanting surrounding)

The motivated, encouraged, freckled face boy

The low, hoarse whisper of the wind-blown dunes, fighting defeat,

Dreaming, scheming to reach the top.

Determination of A Boy

 

Penned – MG – 1/23/90

 

 

¹ (Modeled after Sparkles from the Wheel, Walt Whitman)

http://classiclit.about.com/library/bl-etexts/wwhitman/bl-ww-sparkles.htm

², ³ http://classiclit.about.com/library/bl-etexts/wwhitman/bl-ww-sparkles.htm