Sunday, August 18, 2019

Happy Sunday reader!

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What's happening...

Sometimes a blend of joy and hard work is how we live out our purpose. That’s what I’m doing right now—with true delight, working hard to prepare a one-hour message during my keynote presentation before a corporate group here in Orlando. The title: Success—An Inside Job. I’ll be illustrating that no matter what life brings, there is a path to obtain true and genuine success and victory.

 

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Do you believe in miracles?

Jesus’ miracles are undeniable. And now you can step into the action of each of the seven miracles through a brand-new virtual reality production. Listen to the compelling details as director and producer, Rodrigo Equara relates the birth of a close-to-real-life production of the miracles Jesus performed in the film “Seven Miracles.” CLICK HERE for podcast.

 

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Father's Day myth.

Would you agree that love sparks the celebration for our fathers? We recognize the wonderful traits, the loving gestures and the example they gave. But what if fathers didn’t possess these qualities? The celebration changes. We acknowledge instead what to forgive, what to overlook, what to remember and what we learn not to do.

 Whether your father is in heaven like mine, or is gone for other reasons, join me in celebrating God, the heavenly Father who is perfect in every way, never fails never makes mistakes, never leaves or condemns, but always cares, forgives, nurtures and loves with no end.

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Why aren't my prayers being answered?

Did you ever ask that question? We all do. Sometimes, God seems distant. Sometimes He says no. Sometimes He says yes and exceeds in His provision of what we ask Him.

This lovely lady writes this note after hearing my presentation:

I can't tell you how truly moved I was, ways beyond words....

The Lord has not only healed you and taught you forgiveness, but has FILLED your life with such JOY that I can only imagine! Oh, how I envy that!

All our lives, in one way or another, have been filled with love, joy, pain, and loss. We all try to deal with each in our own way. Some met with success, others with failure. I've tried to find strength in those painful moments, with the faith that I was raised. And I must admit, there have been times I have wondered where God was, especially in those life-altering devastating times, as I fervently recited the prayers of my youth.

But listening to you tonight—filled with such complete joy, love and praise for The Lord, I realized that no matter how hard I've tried, no matter how hard I've prayed; how many Sundays I've gone to Mass and recited the rote prayers and responses, something is missing. And I couldn't figure out what it was....

Until I realized that YOU have found what I need to find—a relationship with God that I've been missing. Pat

Wow! I hear what Pat is saying.

I was where she is now. Trusting in memorized prayers, hoping God would be more attentive if I obeyed in the way, the correct way to pray.

But when life became really ugly, desperation set in, and hopelessness threatened to come in, I learned these truths about prayer.

• Religion should not dictate the way we should pray.

• God is attentive to our heart’s cries rather than our memorized recitations.

• God knows our needs before we even speak them.

• God is already working on the answer.

• He requires our patience and faith to increase even when no answers appear.

• God expects us to spend moments to be still before Him.

• He delights when we know His promises so well that we repeat them back to Him.

• And God expects our gratitude no matter what answer He gives.

Prayer isn’t a one-way thing, but a dialogue with Him in the comfort of a close relationship. We speak and He speaks back through His Word. We ask and repeat what He promised. We believe, and He rewards our faith. We trust in His answer and He never disappoints us.

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Just for fun.

Here’s an excerpt from my book Simply Salsa:  (A copy is waiting for you HERE.)

Note: This chapter reveals the details about the woman at the well. She has no name, but maybe we can substitute our own name—lost, confused, longing, empty, or anxious.

…” She missed the obvious. While she stood before Jesus, the Christ, face to face, in the clarity of the bright noon sun, she said, “I know that Messiah (called Christ) is coming. When he comes, he will explain everything to us.” It was then that Jesus declared clearly, “I who speak to you am he” (John 4:25-26).

What’s the matter with her? She’s talking to the Christ himself, but she doesn’t recognize him. Wait a minute, let’s be easy on her. We do the very same thing. As you read these lines, Christ is saying the very same thing to you: “Muchacha, I’m here beside you. My Holy Spirit is present, whispering to you. So why are you still waiting for that moment when you’ll encounter me? I’m face to face with you, offering freedom from those chains and longing, offering to fill you with the peace your heart thirsts for.”

And if you decide to take off those dark sunglasses, lean forward, and with eyes big as your abuela’s dinner plates, you’ll recognize Jesus. Maybe you’ll gasp as you ask, “Is that you, J-E-S-U-S?” Then it hits you—and you know. It is he, real and alive. After you swallow hard and, with passion in your voice, conviction in your heart, and empty of human apprehensions, you declare, “Lord, I believe you. I really and truly do, because you said, ‘Very truly I tell you, whoever hears my word and believes him who sent me has eternal life and will not be judged but has crossed over from death to life’” (John 5:24).

What’s wrong? The past is dead, but the future is alive, vibrant, and waiting for you and me. It’s Your turn Okay, Chica, no more analyzing. It’s your turn to open your heart, part those red lips and with shyness stuffed back in your purse, declare with all the honesty your abuela taught you, “Lord, it’s you and me. I cancel my membership in the “ugly past club” because I’m moving on, dancing together with you to the rhythm of your promises of healing and restoration. I’m tired of living in the desert—the wilderness of my pain.”

God’s answer is sweet yet direct: “Forget the former things; do not dwell on the past. See, I am doing a new thing! Now it springs up; do you not perceive it? I am making a way in the wilderness and streams in the wasteland” (Isaiah 43:18-19).

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Prayer

My prayer for you is that June is a month when you sizzle with passion for the Lord. And you enjoy a picnic in the green grass of His love.

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 Janet