Beauty for Ashes: A Global Outcry for Justice and Equality

The grass withereth, the flower fadeth; but the word of our God shall stand for ever. Isaiah 40:8

Oh, Nation! Do you hear our voices? Do you hear the cries of the people? The people who are constantly shot and killed on the streets and in their homes of America? The people constantly under assault and persecution for the color of their skin? The people striped of their identity and vandalized of their basic human rights to live free on this earth?

Our cities are burning due to the blind eye for justice. For generations, we have been raped of our humanity and dignity. How long do we have to continue on the same cycle of racism, prejudice, bigotry, harassment, discrimination and ignorance?

Oh, stiff-necked nation, repent for the sins against humanity. Turn away from your idols. Change from your wicked ways, devices and weapons of destruction against the people of color. Have you not learned anything from past generations?

This racist spirit; this racist attitude is a condition of the heart. It is a learned behavior that is passed on like a contagious virus. It is a disease of the soul that has infected every political, educational, judicial, and economical system throughout the world.

Do you not understand there is a penalty? That there is a price to pay for injustice? That you are accountable and responsible for your actions or complacency?

Why did it take cities to burn across the nation to the arrest four white men for the death of an innocent man?

Your hands are bloody and unclean. Your hearts are like filthy rags. Your mind is like a cancer.

We are at a crossroad in America for justice. We can’t go back to insanity. The repetitious pattern of hatred has to be extinguished. The time is now!

This moment is a pivotal point in history. The embedded racial coding throughout American culture is exposed and guilty as charged. Do you realize that there are consequences of an unchanged heart filled with arrogance, greed, ignorance and disobedience?

Oh city of Babylon, judgement is upon you. Purge from your evil ways before it’s too late. Its midnight hour in America and in the world. Extreme measures of correction, action and resolution is the torch that will lead the way out of darkness. The wind of change is upon us.

Will we finally have beauty for ashes?

The message is simple. Love.

Jer 50:23-25

How is the hammer of the whole earth cut asunder and broken! how is Babylon become a desolation among the nations!

24 I have laid a snare for thee, and thou art also taken, O Babylon, and thou wast not aware: thou art found, and also caught, because thou hast striven against the Lord.

25 The Lord hath opened his armoury, and hath brought forth the weapons of his indignation: for this is the work of the Lord God of hosts in the land of the Chaldeans.

Jer 50:26-29

Come against her from the utmost border, open her storehouses: cast her up as heaps, and destroy her utterly: let nothing of her be left.

27 Slay all her bullocks; let them go down to the slaughter: woe unto them! for their day is come, the time of their visitation.

28 The voice of them that flee and escape out of the land of Babylon, to declare in Zion the vengeance of the Lord our God, the vengeance of his temple.

29 Call together the archers against Babylon: all ye that bend the bow, camp against it round about; let none thereof escape: recompense her according to her work; according to all that she hath done, do unto her: for she hath been proud against the Lord, against the Holy One of Israel.

Jer 50:38

A drought is upon her waters; and they shall be dried up: for it is the land of graven images, and they are mad upon their idols.

Jer 50:43

The king of Babylon hath heard the report of them, and his hands waxed feeble: anguish took hold of him, and pangs as of a woman in travail.

Jer 51:7-11

Babylon hath been a golden cup in the Lord’s hand, that made all the earth drunken: the nations have drunken of her wine; therefore the nations are mad.

Babylon is suddenly fallen and destroyed: howl for her; take balm for her pain, if so be she may be healed.

We would have healed Babylon, but she is not healed: forsake her, and let us go every one into his own country: for her judgment reacheth unto heaven, and is lifted up even to the skies.

10 The Lord hath brought forth our righteousness: come, and let us declare in Zion the work of the Lord our God.

11 Make bright the arrows; gather the shields: the Lord hath raised up the spirit of the kings of the Medes: for his device is against Babylon, to destroy it; because it is the vengeance of the Lord, the vengeance of his temple.

Jer 51:17-18

Every man is brutish by his knowledge; every founder is confounded by the graven image: for his molten image is falsehood, and there is no breath in them.

18 They are vanity, the work of errors: in the time of their visitation they shall perish.

Jer 51:43

43 Her cities are a desolation, a dry land, and a wilderness, a land wherein no man dwelleth, neither doth any son of man pass thereby.

Isaiah 61

The Spirit of the Lord God is upon me; because the Lord hath anointed me to preach good tidings unto the meek; he hath sent me to bind up the brokenhearted, to proclaim liberty to the captives, and the opening of the prison to them that are bound;

To proclaim the acceptable year of the Lord, and the day of vengeance of our God; to comfort all that mourn;

To appoint unto them that mourn in Zion, to give unto them beauty for ashes, the oil of joy for mourning, the garment of praise for the spirit of heaviness; that they might be called trees of righteousness, the planting of the Lord, that he might be glorified.

And they shall build the old wastes, they shall raise up the former desolations, and they shall repair the waste cities, the desolations of many generations.

And strangers shall stand and feed your flocks, and the sons of the alien shall be your plowmen and your vinedressers.

But ye shall be named the Priests of the Lord: men shall call you the Ministers of our God: ye shall eat the riches of the Gentiles, and in their glory shall ye boast yourselves.

For your shame ye shall have double; and for confusion they shall rejoice in their portion: therefore in their land they shall possess the double: everlasting joy shall be unto them.

For I the Lord love judgment, I hate robbery for burnt offering; and I will direct their work in truth, and I will make an everlasting covenant with them.

And their seed shall be known among the Gentiles, and their offspring among the people: all that see them shall acknowledge them, that they are the seed which the Lord hath blessed.

10 I will greatly rejoice in the Lord, my soul shall be joyful in my God; for he hath clothed me with the garments of salvation, he hath covered me with the robe of righteousness, as a bridegroom decketh himself with ornaments, and as a bride adorneth herself with her jewels.

11 For as the earth bringeth forth her bud, and as the garden causeth the things that are sown in it to spring forth; so the Lord God will cause righteousness and praise to spring forth before all the nations.

Resurrection Power

“And behold, there was a great earthquake, for the angel of the Lord descended from heaven, and came and rolled back the stone from the door where Jesus laid. His countenance was like lightening and His raiment was as white as snow. And for fear of Him the keepers did shake, and became as dead men. And the angel answered and said unto the women, Fear not ye; for I know that ye seek Jesus which was crucified. He is not here; for He is risen, as he said. Come see the place where the Lord lay. And go quickly, and tell His disciples that He is risen from the dead; and behold, He goes before you into Galilee, there shall ye see Him.” Matt 28:1-7

The death, burial and resurrection is the most important declaration of faith we can pronounce in our hearts and in the world. Jesus is alive and lives within us. As another Easter passes away, we should keep the remembrance of Jesus’s sacrifice with us daily.

We should walk with the authority that Jesus has given us. We have the same resurrection power that Jesus has because He lives within each believer. Time passes, weather shifts, people change, yet there is one man who walked the earth over 2000 years ago who was crowned with thorns, falsely accused and sentenced to death. At one moment, the crowd was raving over him and the next minute, they yelled, “Crucify Him!” He was mocked and beaten while He stumbled carrying a wooden cross. “But He was wounded for our transgressions, he was bruised for our iniquities the chastisement of our peace was upon Him, and with His stripes we our healed.” Isaiah 52:5

“He was oppressed, and He was afflicted, yet He opened not His mouth; He is brought as a lamb to the slaughter; and as a sheep before her shearers is dumb, so He opened not His mouth. Isaiah 52:7

He is a man who does not change. His love remains the same. No matter what we’ve done we can ask for forgiveness. It’s a special, unconditional love that the human mind cannot comprehend. It is a deep-rooted love that allowed Christ to take the penalty for our sins. He did not come to condemn the world, but to redeem the world. “God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son that whosoever shall believe in Him, will not perish, but have everlasting life.” John 3:16

So, as we go about our week, let’s carry Easter in our hearts and minds daily and share Jesus’s story with a lost and desperate world.

“All power is given unto me in heaven and in earth. Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and the Son and of the Holy Ghost. Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you: and lo, I’m with you always, even unto the end of the world. Amen Matt 28:19-20

In A Split Second – How One Day Changed My Life

car accident

On August 16, 1998, I was helping my friend move to Macon, Georgia to attend Macon State University in the Fall. She rented a moving truck and we started loading her furniture, personal items, etc onto the truck. We stopped at the gas station before we started the long, vigorous moving trip. I was getting a very strange feeling that day before we left the apartment. Our trip was delayed because of a short rainstorm, but the sun came out right about the time we left to pick up the truck.

As my friend pumped the gas into the vehicle, I stood between the gas pump and the truck. I just felt extremely anxious and nervous. I was shaking inside and immediately sat down inside the truck while my friend went to pay for the gas.

As we started on the highway, we smelled something burning. Since it was a hot day, we thought it was the air conditioning unit so my friend turned it off. We played music and talked about her new beginning at Macon State. She mentioned that the truck was not picking up speed and we were going no more than 50 mph.

As we continued to drive, the burning smell grew stronger. Suddenly, we saw a man on the right side of us, waving his arm outside of his car window, flagging us to pull over on the right side of the highway. We crossed over three lanes of traffic, but as we entered the emergency lane my friend was pumping on the brakes and the truck would not slow down. We was going about 50 mph when she decided to slam onto the emergency rail to slow the truck down. We continued to bounce back and forth onto the emergency rail while my friend yelled for me to jump out of the truck. I thought she was crazy. I told her I was not jumping out of the truck.

I immediately looked into the rear view mirror and saw a trail of the blackest smoke that I ever saw in my life. It smothered the entire highway. My instinct told me that I had no choice but to jump. When I opened my door, there were flames shooting from under the truck. I did not expect to see fire. I did not look back to see what my friend was doing, I didn’t think about anything but getting out of the truck. As I jumped, I felt tremendous heat on my legs. It felt like I was moving in slow motion. I somehow landed on my feet and stumbled to catch myself. The truck continued to roll. I felt my friend’s arm hug me as we stood and trembled and cried together.

As the truck rolled, the front area where we sat burst into flames. Suddenly, it started to thunderstorm severely. I stood in the heavy rain screaming and crying. The man who flagged us down pulled his car to the side of the road to help us. There was a woman and child in the car. We sat in silence inside their car as we waited until the fire and emergency unit came on the scene. In the faint distance, I heard the screeching sirens of the ambulance and fire trucks.

As I reflect on this dramatic experience, my eyes still fill with tears. I never knew the man’s name that assisted us. I can’t even remember what he looked like. I never even got the opportunity to thank him. Amazingly, my friend and I did not have a scratch or burn on our bodies. We were not crippled or paralyzed. Nor did we perish on that day. I sometimes reflect on all the things that could of happened and I probably would not be here to even tell you the details of this incident.

The Lord lifted us out of that truck and gave us another chance at life. I never quite looked at life the same after that day. It’s a testimony that I will carry for the rest of my life. I didn’t understand why my life was spared on that Saturday afternoon, but after years of walking with Jesus, I come to realize that this incident was the beginning of my ministry. I’ve had several accounts of testimonies through severe trials, obstacles, tribulations. But through it all, I’m standing in victory. God is faithful.

Reflection of God’s Love

I just have to provide a follow up on my most recent post. On Sunday morning, I was reading, “Our Daily Bread” and since I didn’t read Saturday’s devotional I combined both readings into one. It was about God’s Love! When I went to church, my pastor specifically preached on another scripture I read the same morning on “Mark 7” and also preached on God’s love confirming my recent posting. I also reached for Joyce Meyer’s book, “The Secret Power of Speaking God’s Word” while lying in bed. I opened the book and it turned automatically to “Receiving God’s Love.” So I posted the scriptures that I found below. It was very strong in my Spirit to post this experience.

I just have to tell you that God will work through you if you allow Him. I have millions of stories similar to this one. Some may call it coincidences, but I have to acknowledge the truth. I cannot discredit or disregard the simple to the biggest things that God has done for me.

Receiving God’s Love

gods-love

God loves those who love Him, and those who seek Him early ad diligently shall fine Him. (Proverbs 8:17)

For God so loved the world that He gave His only Son, so that whoever believes in Him shall not perish but have everlasting life. (John 3:16)

He has loved me, as the Father has loved Him; and He instructs me to abide in His love. (John 15:9)

For the Father Himself loves me because I have loved Him and have believed that He came out from the Father. (John 16:27)

Hope never disappoints or deludes or shames me, for God’s love has been poured out in my heart through the Holy Spirit who has been given to me. (Romans 5:5)

I love God truly (with affectionate, reverence, prompt obedience, and grateful recognition of His blessing), I am known by God (recognized as worthy of His intimacy and love, and I am owned by Him.) (I Corth 8:3)

Let everything I do be done in love (true love to God and man as inspired by God’s love for me.) I Corth 16:14

The love of Christ controls and urges and impels me, because I am of the opinion and conviction that (if) One died for all, then all died; and He died for all, so that all those who live might live o longer to and for themselves, but to and for Him who died and was raised again for our sake. (2 Corth 5:14-15)

Christ through my faith dwells in my heart. I am rooted deep in love and founded securely on love, I have the power and strength to apprehend and grasp with all the saints (God’s devoted people, the experience of that love) what is the breadth and length and height and depth (of it) (I have come to know (practically, through experience for myself) the love of Christ, which far surpasses mere knowledge; I am filled (through my being) unto all the fullness of God (I have the riches measure of the divine Presence, and I have become a body wholly filled and flooded with God Himself.) Esph 3:17-19

My life lovingly expresses truth (in all things, speaking truly, dealing truly living truly.) Enfolded in love, I grow up in every way and all things into Him who is the Head, (even) Christ.

I walk in love as Christ loved me and gave Himself up for me, a slain offering and sacrifce to God a sweet fragrance. Eph 5:2

I carefully build myself up in this most holy faith by praying in the Holy Spirit, staying right at the cent of God’s love, keeping my arms open and outstretched, ready for the mercy of Jesus Christ. This is the unending life, the real life! (Jude 20:21)

The Magnitude of God

While driving home in rush hour traffic, I was thinking about my life and how God is involved in every aspect. He knows my needs, desires, obstacles, challenges, weaknesses, and strengths. He knows everything about me, even the things that I have not discovered or I don’t’ yet understand about myself. He is aware of the intricate details of my being.

As I looked at everyone waiting at the red light, it hit me. Not only is He involved with every detail of my life, but every single person in this world. My mind started to randomly think of people all over the globe: Life events, natural disasters, political wars, economic crisis and terrorism that wound and distress the spirit.

Through all these difficulties in life there is hope for a new beginning; a new tomorrow by the power of God. I always seem to hear people blame God for the bad things that happen to us. But, I have never heard anyone blame the devil.

Although God has unlimited power, Satan is real and has the power to influence people’s thoughts, words, deeds, and actions. Overcoming spiritual battles is learning to use God’s word to destroy the enemy, praying and worshipping. God’s word is full of promises and truth. I have many testimonies to share how God has changed my life. He is not a God that should lie. Once we effectively learn to fight spiritual warfare with the armor of the Lord, we walk in victory.


People may argue if God is in control why does He allow bad things to happen to us? He is the creator of all things. He even created evil. I understand this is a very strong statement. I was even surprised myself when I found it in scripture. But, His character is of good not evil. He forms our character to be more like Him once we acknowledge Him as our Lord.

 God is working out His divine plans in our lives. He allows us the freedom of choice. We can be full of rebellion and strife or full of obedience, faith, and peace. He fills us with His grace and mercy which is a gift. His nature and presence are Holy and pure. He sent His son, Jesus, to save us from sin and death. Once we confess the Lord as our Savior there is no such thing as guilt or condemnation. It is allowing Jesus to pay our debt and we are set free from the burden of sin. Confess the Lord as your Savior and open your heart to Him.

 Scripture References

Isaiah 45:12:13
 12I have made the earth, and created man upon it: I, even my hands, have stretched out the heavens, and all their host have I commanded.
   13I have raised him up in righteousness, and I will direct all his ways: he shall build my city, and he shall let go my captives, not for price nor reward, saith the LORD of hosts

Isaiah 45:16:25

 16They shall be ashamed, and also confounded, all of them: they shall go to confusion together that are makers of idols.
   17But Israel shall be saved in the LORD with an everlasting salvation: ye shall not be ashamed nor confounded world without end.
   18For thus saith the LORD that created the heavens; God himself that formed the earth and made it; he hath established it, he created it not in vain, he formed it to be inhabited: I am the LORD; and there is none else.
   19I have not spoken in secret, in a dark place of the earth: I said not unto the seed of Jacob, Seek ye me in vain: I the LORD speak righteousness, I declare things that are right.
  20Assemble yourselves and come; draw near together, ye that are escaped of the nations: they have no knowledge that set up the wood of their graven image, and pray unto a god that cannot save.
   21Tell ye, and bring them near; yea, let them take counsel together: who hath declared this from ancient time? Who hath told it from that time? Have not I the LORD? And there is no God else beside me; a just God and a Savior; there is none beside me.
 22Look unto me, and be ye saved, all the ends of the earth: for I am God, and there is none else.
   23I have sworn by myself, the word is gone out of my mouth in righteousness, and shall not return void, That unto me every knee shall bow, every tongue shall swear.
   24Surely, shall one say, in the LORD have I righteousness and strength: even to him shall men come; and all that are incensed against him shall be ashamed.
   25In the LORD shall all the seed of Israel be justified, and shall glory.

The following passages are from Isaiah 45:5-7 

I am the LORD, and there is none else, there is no God beside me: I girded thee, though thou hast not known me:
   That they may know from the rising of the sun, and from the west, that there is none beside me. I am the LORD, and there is none else.
  form the light, and create darkness: I make peace, and create evil: I the LORD do all these things.

John 3:16
So God, so loved the world that He gave His only begotten son that whosoever believes in Him shall not perish, but have everlasting life.

 Jeremiah 29:11
For I know the thoughts that I think toward you, saith the LORD, thoughts of peace, and not of evil, to give you an expected end.

Walking in the Light

The word is a lamp unto my feet and a light unto my path. Psalm 119:105

I went to the library and decided to walk since it was about 65 degrees. It was a gorgeous day, especially after dealing with the biggest snowstorm of the year about a week ago!

On my way back, I was wondering about my direction in life. I know what I want to do, but I just don’t know how to get there. We all know that we need to enjoy the journey and not the destination, but sometimes to be honest, I desire a shortcut pass the struggles, disappointments and challenges of life.

The world has taken a strange turn in the past few years. I have been through many transitions, but I’ve been at a level of peace that I can’t comprehend. 

I believe in unexpected opportunities in the midst of a crisis. I might be a little more optimistic than the majority and it serves favorable. It also helps me overlook the panic and despair that others may feel and experience at this time.

While I was walking, I happened to look down and saw a business card on the ground. I picked it up and noticed  that it was from a church ministry.

On the back was printed, “I am the light of the world; he who follows me will not walk in the darkness.” I stopped in my tracks in astonishment. I also reflected on the verse I read this morning in Proverbs 29:18, “Where there is no vision the people perish: but he that keeps the law, happy is he.

Some may believe it was a coincidence. I believe God speaks in gentle whispers to get our attention.