We are all Graduates

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This time of year we see all kinds of people graduating with all kinds of degrees and heading off into their futures and ready to make contributions to society as well as lead their families and corporations and churches to new heights. The memories flood my mind as I write this of the hard work work and endless nights and fears that hit one who is nearing graduation. I write this from experience. You may not have a college degree or a degree of any kind. But you still graduated too you know. The graduation ceremony is the conferring of a degree upon a person who has met the requirements set forth by an institution. In our walk with Christ we graduate so to speak as we move from glory to glory. In II Corinthians 3:18 it is written, “And we, who with unveiled faces all reflect the Lord’s glory, are being transformed into his likeness with ever-increasing glory, which comes from the Lord, who is the Spirit.” Graduates enter a program as novices and then graduate with honors as they fulfill the requirements. It is the same with our walk in Christ. As we graduate from one trial to the next we are transformed into our Lord’s likeness. We aren’t the same as when we entered. We graduated and can move onto the next phase of God’s program for us. I know I took a couple liberties but I think you get the message. We are all graduates with the Lord Jesus conferring his degree (anointing) upon us. Walk this day in what God has confirmed upon you. Howard’s Helpful Hint: Centered people live their lives in the anointing Christ has conferred upon them.


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I have been reading about Moses in Deuteronomy. What a life this man led! He was on the face of the earth and saw God himself! He raised his staff and God parted the Red Sea and confronted Pharaoh and his hard heart. He struck a rock and enough water gushed out that it satisfied a whole nation of people! Yet after all of that he didn’t enter the promise land on earth. The history book (the bible) shows us a man who although flawed had a calling of God on his life and fulfilled that calling at a great price. I have heard it said and want it to be said of me as well that, “Some men run after men; and some men run after God.” Moses indeed ran after God. Even though Moses was hurt spiritually he still had a heart to please God. A few lessons that some of my friends remind me of Moses are that Moses constantly kept God in view, God was his constant companion. Moses sought to please God and was obedient and placed his trust in the great “I AM.” As for me, Moses taught me that God can be trusted. We all are experiencing things in life that cause us to doubt. The scripture tells us to hold tightly to our faith and it will be rewarded. In Hebrews 11:6 it is written, And without faith it is impossible to please God, because anyone who comes to him must believe that he exists and that he rewards those who earnestly seek him.” Then in verse 24-28 it’s written, “By faith Moses, when he had grown up, refused to be known as the son of Pharaoh’s daughter. 25He chose to be mistreated along with the people of God rather than to enjoy the pleasures of sin for a short time. 26He regarded disgrace for the sake of Christ as of greater value than the treasures of Egypt, because he was looking ahead to his reward. 27By faith he left Egypt, not fearing the king’s anger; he persevered because he saw him who is invisible. 28By faith he kept the Passover and the sprinkling of blood, so that the destroyer of the firstborn would not touch the firstborn of Israel.” We often times want the scars produced by faith as if they were a badge of honor, but rarely do we want to go through the life that actually produces the scars. By constantly keeping God in his view, Moses learned he could trust God. There’s so much more but that is a good start. Howard’s Helpful Hint: Centered people learn to live their lives trusting God.

Are you tired?

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I have to be honest with you. When it comes to rest I am one of the worlds worst. Like a two year old I seem to have two speeds; on and off. This life and all its pressures bring me to a halt when I realize I just cant keep up the speed I normally do. I am realizing there are times I just need to rest in God and what he has provided for me and not worry or hurry because I have another column or book or blog due and i have an Emergency department staff needing me to breathe life and encouragement into them. Then add onto that the fact we have an enemy called Satan, who seeks to steal, kill and destroy our lives in every which way he can; tends to make things unbearable. In Romans 8:11 it is written, “And if the Spirit of him who raised Jesus from the dead is living in you, he who raised Christ from the dead will also give life to your mortal bodies through his Spirit, who lives in you.” I am learning that the Holy spirit can give life to my tired mind and body. Half the time I find people are more emotional tired than physically tired. Placing God first gives us the energy we need to sustain us. All we have to do is get into the word. Satan will do all he can to keep you busy and out of the word of God. Fight it and renew you spiritual and physical energy by the word of God today. Memorize God’s word and let it be the fuel you need to rely on.
Howard’s Helpful Hint: Centered people Go to the word of God to get renewed spiritually and physically.

Is it just me?

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Have you ever asked yourself, “Is it just me or…”? It seems when the seasons of life get hard is when I tend to ask myself that question the most. The up and down economies of this world tend to instill fear in a lot of us. The news reporters report continual gloom adding to an already blustery spiritual attack we are under. In Hebrews 13:5 it is written, ” Keep your lives free from the love of money and be content with what you have, because God has said, “Never will I leave you; never will I forsake you.” I choose to rest on God’s promises that he will never leave me nor forsake me. I have to continually go to the word and and feed my mind and spirit on what God says about life. After all, my life and times are in my hands and God’s hands; no one else’s. We cant escape the trials nor the instability of the world in which we live. However, I take comfort in that. Many generations whom went before us experienced the same and many worse scenarios than we have and they made it through. Another scripture speaks that what we go through is not uncommon to man. In other words we are all experiencing or have experienced many similar scenarios. I encourage you today to get into the word of God and study and memorize what the scriptures say are for you. Pray them and love them for they are life to your whole spirit and body. Be encouraged my friends.
Howard’s Helpful Hints: Centered people live centered in the word of God.

What do you Allow?

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What do you allow your eyes to look upon? What do you allow your ears to hear? The eyes and ears alike allow entrance into your spirit. We see something and we dwell on it; we hear a good song and we sing it. The only way for that to happen is to allow it into our hearts and mind and spirit. David must have known this as he wrote Psalm 101:3 “I will set before my eyes no vile thing.” David then goes on to say in verse 6, “My eyes will be on the faithful in the land, that they may dwell with me; he whose walk is blameless will minister to me.” David had to have seen some really bad things with all the wars he had been in and the diseases upon his people and more. Yet he decided to only allow his eyes to gaze upon things that weren’t vile, but were pleasant and pleasing to his spirit. He then goes on to say he will only allow those who are blameless before the Lord to have input into his spirit. We all like David have many things pulling for our attention and begging to let them into our spirits. I have made a decision to stop watching movies, TV, music videos or anything I see that is unpleasing to the Lord. It is amazing to me to see what many Christians consider all right to allow into their life. If my favorite movie or song speaks my God’s name in vain then it will no longer be my favorite, nor will I watch it or listen to it again. My attitude is; you curse my God; you curse me. Cursing is the lowest form of intelligence available to us. It takes absolutely no restraint to curse or be perverted. But we have a higher calling. I ask you to join me in boycotting anything that is vile, perverted, unpleasant as well as things that curse the very god who gave me eternal life. Those things offend the Holy Spirit and yet we do them and wonder why we can’t hear what he is saying to us. Ask God to cleanse of you any perverseness that may be pulling at you because of what you allowed into your life. Ask yourself if what you are watching or listening to is pleasing to your heavenly father. Please join me in setting no vile things before our eyes, ears and spirits.
Howard’s Helpful Hint: Centered people allow only what is good and pleasing to God in their life.

Happy Easter!

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Happy Easter my friends! He is risen and today as all days we celebrate! May the Lord of peace be with you in rest today and read Psalm 103 and “forget not all his benefits.” More than that though; Praise him for who he is!

Forgiven and Released!

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We are a forgiven and released people. In Psalm 102:18-22 it’s written, “Let this be written for a future generation, that a people not yet created may praise the LORD : 19 “The LORD looked down from his sanctuary on high, from heaven he viewed the earth, 20 to hear the groans of the prisoners and release those condemned to death.” 21 So the name of the LORD will be declared in Zion and his praise in Jerusalem 22 when the peoples and the kingdoms assemble to worship the LORD.” You can live Easter every day of your life. You can take communion everyday of your life. Our Father in heaven sent his son to die for us and to take our sins and released us from captivity to a slave owner satan himself. I love how the psalmist in psalm 102 verse 18 states wrote, “for a future generation, a people not yet created.” Wow! Thousands of years ago the Holy Spirit placed on men’s hearts to pray and write for you and me! Today I urge you to walk in a thankful heart, free and forgiven, worshiping the Lord for who he is, what he has done and is doing! Our heavenly father and his son Jesus and the Holy spirit are all alive and well ruling and reigning in heaven and protecting you and I. Fellowship with them today!
Howard’s Helpful Hint: Centered people have a thankful heart based on who God is.

Who do you say He is?

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Who do you say Jesus is? In Luke 7:49 it is written, “The other guests began to say among themselves, “Who is this who even forgives sins?” They saw him as the one who forgave sins but didn’t really know who he was. In 2 Peter 1:17 Peter writes, “For he received honor and glory from God the Father when the voice came to him from the Majestic Glory, saying, “This is my Son, whom I love; with him I am well pleased.” God said Jesus is his son in whom he is well pleased. It is written in Revelation 1:8, “I am the Alpha and the Omega,” says the Lord God, “who is, and who was, and who is to come, the Almighty.” I ask again; who do you say Jesus is?Do you say he is God’s one and only son born of a virgin birth that came to forgive the sins of the world and to this day still heals, comforts, leads, guides, answers prayers? Perhaps you say to your self “that he is God’s one and only son and I know he can do those things but I don’t really see him do those things in my life.” Let me encourage you today that Jesus can and will be what you need him to be. Go to the word of God the Holy Bible, and find scriptures that meet the need you have and pray them to the Jesus and asking and thanking him for those answers before you see anything happen and keep memorizing them as they become weapons in your spiritual arsenal to fight against your enemy the devil. If you look in the scripture; Jesus never turned away anyone who passionately pursued him. Today I say, Jesus is my Lord and savior and is healing me of sickness, sin and disease and giving me a life worth living. He is forgiving me and cleansing me of a past that has regrets and giving me a vision of a future with him. That is there for you too. Take it! Don’t wait for it! Take it! Just as the lady with an issue of blood reached out and touched the hem of his garment; You reach out and touch Jesus in prayer and get what you need. No more living with pain, sickness and sorrow!
Howard’s Helpful Hint: Centered people know who they need Jesus to be in their life.

Choose whom you serve

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Whom or what have you chosen to serve today? Deuteronomy 30:19 NIV ” This day I call heaven and earth as witnesses against you that I have set before you life and death, blessings and curses. Now choose life, so that you and your children may live.” In the Emergency Department I have been confronted by patient’s who have been angry because the physician didn’t give them the drugs they wanted. These people I speak of are usually addicts who aren’t honest with themselves they aren’t honest patients who are requesting something they know works for them. The patients I speak of choose to serve drugs that take over their thinking, sleeping patterns and physical and emotional states. It breaks my heart seeing them in this condition knowing what their future holds for them. When you or I choose to serve anything other than Jesus himself it opens us up to consequences and curses this life has to offer. When we choose to serve Jesus we are given opportunities for healing and mountains in our lives to be removed! Jesus stated he wanted us to have life more abundantly. 1Timothy 1:14 states, “The grace of our Lord was poured out on me abundantly, along with the faith and love that are in Christ Jesus.” Jesus pours out his grace, his favor on those who choose him. This isn’t religion or a game or mind over matter. It is real life based upon real promises from our God. Choose this day whom and what you will serve. If you choose Jesus; you live. If you choose sin; the ultimate penalty is death. See James 1:15 NIV “These desires give birth to sinful actions. And when sin is allowed to grow, it gives birth to death. Notice it states, “allowed to grow.” I implore you to no longer allow sin to grow in your life but cut it off at its very root and live! Choose wisely!
Howard’s Helpful Hint: Centered people make a daily choice to follow God’s word and make it a priority in their lives.


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From all accounts I see; fasting is nearly non-existent in the church today. I don’t hear it mentioned or taught about like I did years ago. I do know of churches that have corporate fast and encourage individual fasting. However, they are few and far between. I remember when fasting was a foundational responsibility of being a Christian. Just for posterity sake let me say that it still is a foundational responsibility of every Christian. The trouble in today’s world is that we don’t want to do anything that causes us discomfort. However if you read the history in the bible of those who fasted and the results God gave them, I think we would be willing to forgo a meal or two to receive from the Lord. Isaiah 58 is the “fasting chapter” just as 1 Corinthians 13 is considered the “love chapter”. What does fasting do for us? According to the scripture in Isaiah 58 and I’m paraphrasing, it loosens the hold sin has on us, lifts burdens, sets the oppressed free, and breaks yokes of bondage. There are many types of fast such as the Esther fast found in Esther 4;16 which was a 3 day fast seeking God’s favor in a time of personal crisis. There is the Daniel fast in Daniel 10:2-3 for the purpose of understanding the vision and purpose God has for your life. Leviticus 23:27 speaks of a one day fast for consecration and self examination. And of course Isaiah 58 that describes fasting for healing. There are many others that I encourage you to read about and perhaps place in your life. I am restoring fasting in my life to loose the bondage’s and seek direction and most of all to just restore or reset my walk in the lord to where I am in love with the heavenly father just as I was when I was first saved. I love the presence of the Holy Spirit and fellowship with the Father. Our nation needs us today. I personally believe the USA is in a crisis and I also believe the church is in a “Laodocean crisis”. See Revelation chapter 3:14- 22. A Laodocean crisis is where many of us are neither hot nor cold therefore we are not pleasing to God. We actually don’t think we have a need. God see’s things differently than we do. I think many of us have actually been dulled to the fear and respect that God deserves from us. I desire to have God’s thoughts more than my thoughts, and his ways above my ways. Fasting gives us the boost we need spiritually and physically to accomplish that and breaks the spiritual bondages that hold us back. May God forgive our nation and a sleeping slothful church.
Read Jentzen Franklins book on fasting. Its one of the best published today.
Howard’s Helpful Hint: Centered people integrate fasting in their lives to produce godly results and return to their first love.