Dysfunction | It runs in the family…

Hey there BCU Fam!

For this post, because of the informal format, please tune into the podcast recording (click here or on the BCU avatar below) and refer to the written post for the highlights. We pray the post blesses and encourages you. If so, please thumbs up AND leave a comment! Thank you and enjoy the post!

Podcast highlights:

  • Awhile back, I was asked to teach at church–the topic was “The Dynamics of Family Leadership”.
  • That led me to a term called “dysfunction” which is loosely defined as something that does not operate properly or normally.
  • Many of us have conditions, illnesses and situations that run our families. That means there is a dysfunction.
  • Sin is also a dysfunction that runs in all families. God reminds us our dysfunction does not disqualify us from being chosen by Him, to serve Him.

Scripture references

Psalms 51:5

Behold, I was shapen in iniquity; and in sin did my mother conceive me.

Genesis 35:1-29

And God said unto Jacob, Arise, go up to Bethel, and dwell there: and make there an altar unto God, that appeared unto thee when thou fleddest from the face of Esau thy brother.

Then Jacob said unto his household, and to all that were with him, Put away the strange gods that are among you, and be clean, and change your garments:

And let us arise, and go up to Bethel; and I will make there an altar unto God, who answered me in the day of my distress, and was with me in the way which I went.

And they gave unto Jacob all the strange gods which were in their hand, and all their earrings which were in their ears; and Jacob hid them under the oak which was by Shechem.

And they journeyed: and the terror of God was upon the cities that were round about them, and they did not pursue after the sons of Jacob.

So Jacob came to Luz, which is in the land of Canaan, that is, Bethel, he and all the people that were with him.

And he built there an altar, and called the place Elbethel: because there God appeared unto him, when he fled from the face of his brother.

But Deborah, Rebekah’s nurse died, and she was buried beneath Bethel under an oak: and the name of it was called Allonbachuth.

And God appeared unto Jacob again, when he came out of Padanaram, and blessed him.

10 And God said unto him, Thy name is Jacob: thy name shall not be called any more Jacob, but Israel shall be thy name: and he called his name Israel.

11 And God said unto him, I am God Almighty: be fruitful and multiply; a nation and a company of nations shall be of thee, and kings shall come out of thy loins;

12 And the land which I gave Abraham and Isaac, to thee I will give it, and to thy seed after thee will I give the land.

13 And God went up from him in the place where he talked with him.

14 And Jacob set up a pillar in the place where he talked with him, even a pillar of stone: and he poured a drink offering thereon, and he poured oil thereon.

15 And Jacob called the name of the place where God spake with him, Bethel.

16 And they journeyed from Bethel; and there was but a little way to come to Ephrath: and Rachel travailed, and she had hard labour.

17 And it came to pass, when she was in hard labour, that the midwife said unto her, Fear not; thou shalt have this son also.

18 And it came to pass, as her soul was in departing, (for she died) that she called his name Benoni: but his father called him Benjamin.

19 And Rachel died, and was buried in the way to Ephrath, which is Bethlehem.

20 And Jacob set a pillar upon her grave: that is the pillar of Rachel’s grave unto this day.

21 And Israel journeyed, and spread his tent beyond the tower of Edar.

Matthew 23:26-28

26 Thou blind Pharisee, cleanse first that which is within the cup and platter, that the outside of them may be clean also.

27 Woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! for ye are like unto whited sepulchres, which indeed appear beautiful outward, but are within full of dead men’s bones, and of all uncleanness.

28 Even so ye also outwardly appear righteous unto men, but within ye are full of hypocrisy and iniquity.

I Peter 2:9
But ye are a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, an holy nation, a peculiar people; that ye should shew forth the praises of him who hath called you out of darkness into his marvellous light.

Our dysfunctions do not disqualify us from being chosen by God. In fact, He specializes in dysfunction deliverance.


BCUFam, I have to confess that as I was preparing the podcast, the Word of God got really good to me—so much so, that it was a challenge for me not to break out in a loud “thank You, Jesus”! If I had, my voice would have likely overpowered the podcast recording! It is a blessing to know that God is with us, He saves us, and keeps all His promises to us despite the dysfunction in our families, and the sin and iniquity that we were born into. In fact, our dysfunctions do not scare God away–He knows all about them and chooses us ANYWAY, as we heard with Jacob/Israel in part 1 of our podcast. We will plan to get into part 2 the next time we are together!

As a reminder, if you have not subscribed to BlenCouragesU.com, please do so! It’s free and a good place to get the encouragement, inspiration and information based the Word of God! Additionally, you can also see what we are up to on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.

Also, if you so inclined, join us for our Thursday Night Bible Study––we are LIVE on YouTube 8:05EST/7:05CST. You can also listen in and subscribe to the podcast on whatever platform BCU is available on. Some of those platforms are Amazon Music, AnchorFm, Apple Podcasts, Google Podcasts, iHeart Radio, Spotify,  Stitcher Radio , and many more of your favorite podcast platforms!

Thank you SO much for stopping by! May God bless, keep and make His face to shine upon you as you #StayOnTheWall!

Love,

BCU

Persevere in times of difficulty–Part 2

Hey there BCU Fam!

Typically, you have the option of listening to our podcast, reading the notes or both. For this post, because of the informal format, please tune into the podcast recording (click here or on the BCU avatar below) and refer to the written post for the highlights. We pray the post blesses and encourages you. If so, please thumbs up AND leave a comment! Thank you and enjoy the post!

Podcast highlights:

  • Last time we were together, we talked about Jacob, who was exiled from home because of deceiving his brother, Esau, who vowed to kill him.
  • God has spoken to Jacob and told him to go back home and in doing so, he will have to face Esau.
  • After settling his things and family, Jacob is now alone and has an encounter with a man where perseverance brings about a change and a blessing.

Scripture references

Genesis 32:22-32

22 And he rose up that night, and took his two wives, and his two womenservants, and his eleven sons, and passed over the ford Jabbok.

23 And he took them, and sent them over the brook, and sent over that he had.

24 And Jacob was left alone; and there wrestled a man with him until the breaking of the day.

25 And when he saw that he prevailed not against him, he touched the hollow of his thigh; and the hollow of Jacob’s thigh was out of joint, as he wrestled with him.

26 And he said, Let me go, for the day breaketh. And he said, I will not let thee go, except thou bless me.

27 And he said unto him, What is thy name? And he said, Jacob.

28 And he said, Thy name shall be called no more Jacob, but Israel: for as a prince hast thou power with God and with men, and hast prevailed.

29 And Jacob asked him, and said, Tell me, I pray thee, thy name. And he said, Wherefore is it that thou dost ask after my name? And he blessed him there.

30 And Jacob called the name of the place Peniel: for I have seen God face to face, and my life is preserved.

31 And as he passed over Penuel the sun rose upon him, and he halted upon his thigh.

32 Therefore the children of Israel eat not of the sinew which shrank, which is upon the hollow of the thigh, unto this day: because he touched the hollow of Jacob’s thigh in the sinew that shrank.

Isaiah 40:31

 But they that wait upon the Lord shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings as eagles; they shall run, and not be weary; and they shall walk, and not faint.

Hebrews 11:6

But without faith it is impossible to please him: for he that cometh to God must believe that he is, and that he is a rewarder of them that diligently seek him

2 Corinthians 4:7-11

But we have this treasure in earthen vessels, that the excellency of the power may be of God, and not of us.

We are troubled on every side, yet not distressed; we are perplexed, but not in despair;

Persecuted, but not forsaken; cast down, but not destroyed;

10 Always bearing about in the body the dying of the Lord Jesus, that the life also of Jesus might be made manifest in our body.

11 For we which live are always delivered unto death for Jesus’ sake, that the life also of Jesus might be made manifest in our mortal flesh.

Romans 8:38-39

38 For I am persuaded, that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor powers, nor things present, nor things to come,

39 Nor height, nor depth, nor any other creature, shall be able to separate us from the love of God, which is in Christ Jesus our Lord.

I Corinthians 15:58

58 Therefore, my beloved brethren, be ye stedfast, unmoveable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, forasmuch as ye know that your labour is not in vain in the Lord.


BCUFam, I can understand the “contending” with God. When the Lord was calling me out of the world, I tried to put Him on hold to finish up all the plans I had. And there were not “bad” plans, I just wanted to get all of the things done that I wanted to do before I got saved. HA! The Lord started frustrating my plans to the point I would just cry of exhaustion and frazzlement. Wait…is that a word? LOL!

Anyway, I got tired fighting and being hurt—-and decided to go on and get saved. On August 23, 1992, I received the gift of the Holy Ghost as the Spirit of God gave the utterance! (Read Acts chapter 1 and 2 for more). With the help of the Lord I have persevered through some serious trials, but the Lord brought me out all right! Jesus is the best thing that has ever happened to me! Hallelujah!!!!!

As a reminder, if you have not subscribed to BlenCouragesU.com, please do so! It’s free and a good place to get the encouragement, inspiration and information based the Word of God! Additionally, you can also see what we are up to on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram. Also, if you so inclined, join us Thursday nights––we are LIVE on YouTube 8:05EST/7:05CST. You can also listen in and subscribe to the podcast on Stitcher Radio Google Play, and Apple Podcasts.

Thank you SO much for stopping by. God bless, keep and make His face to shine upon you as you #StayOnTheWall!

Love,

BCU

Persevere in times of difficulty–Part 1

Hey there BCU Fam!

Typically, you have the option of listening to our podcast, reading the notes or both. For this post, because of the informal format, please tune into the podcast recording (click here or on the BCU avatar below) and refer to the written post for the highlights. We pray the post blesses and encourages you. If so, please thumbs up AND leave a comment! Thank you and enjoy the post!

Podcast highlights:

  • Today’s podcast is about Jacob, son of Issac and Rebekah, and twin brother of Esau.
  • While Jacob (meaning supplanter, one who grabs another’s heel; one who takes what doesn’t belong to him; one who circumvents) was the younger twin, the Lord told his mother that Esau would serve him (Genesis 25:23).
  • Jacob masterminded and participated in scheming his brother twice.
  • As the Lord starting dealing with Jacob, we see he was an excellent example of perseverance (to be steadfast or continued, despite the situation).
  • Our background comes from Genesis 28:10-22, and then we’ll pick up in Genesis 32.

Scripture references

Genesis 32:1-21

32 And Jacob went on his way, and the angels of God met him.

And when Jacob saw them, he said, This is God’s host: and he called the name of that place Mahanaim.

And Jacob sent messengers before him to Esau his brother unto the land of Seir, the country of Edom.

And he commanded them, saying, Thus shall ye speak unto my lord Esau; Thy servant Jacob saith thus, I have sojourned with Laban, and stayed there until now:

And I have oxen, and asses, flocks, and menservants, and womenservants: and I have sent to tell my lord, that I may find grace in thy sight.

And the messengers returned to Jacob, saying, We came to thy brother Esau, and also he cometh to meet thee, and four hundred men with him.

Then Jacob was greatly afraid and distressed: and he divided the people that was with him, and the flocks, and herds, and the camels, into two bands;

And said, If Esau come to the one company, and smite it, then the other company which is left shall escape.

And Jacob said, O God of my father Abraham, and God of my father Isaac, the Lord which saidst unto me, Return unto thy country, and to thy kindred, and I will deal well with thee:

10 I am not worthy of the least of all the mercies, and of all the truth, which thou hast shewed unto thy servant; for with my staff I passed over this Jordan; and now I am become two bands.

11 Deliver me, I pray thee, from the hand of my brother, from the hand of Esau: for I fear him, lest he will come and smite me, and the mother with the children.

12 And thou saidst, I will surely do thee good, and make thy seed as the sand of the sea, which cannot be numbered for multitude.

13 And he lodged there that same night; and took of that which came to his hand a present for Esau his brother;

14 Two hundred she goats, and twenty he goats, two hundred ewes, and twenty rams,

15 Thirty milch camels with their colts, forty kine, and ten bulls, twenty she asses, and ten foals.

16 And he delivered them into the hand of his servants, every drove by themselves; and said unto his servants, Pass over before me, and put a space betwixt drove and drove.

17 And he commanded the foremost, saying, When Esau my brother meeteth thee, and asketh thee, saying, Whose art thou? and whither goest thou? and whose are these before thee?

18 Then thou shalt say, They be thy servant Jacob’s; it is a present sent unto my lord Esau: and, behold, also he is behind us.

19 And so commanded he the second, and the third, and all that followed the droves, saying, On this manner shall ye speak unto Esau, when ye find him.

20 And say ye moreover, Behold, thy servant Jacob is behind us. For he said, I will appease him with the present that goeth before me, and afterward I will see his face; peradventure he will accept of me.

21 So went the present over before him: and himself lodged that night in the company.

Sometimes we can be “tricked” into situations, many times, we overlook the warnings God gives us.

BCUFam, what stands out to me is how Jacob cried out to God in prayer in Genesis 32:9-11. There was no trick he could pull to help him face Esau—only God could help in this tough situation. And that’s so true for us, only God can help us with what we go through in this life and in those extreme times of difficulty, we need to persevere through with the Lord’s help. Lord will, we’ll plan to talk more about that and finish up our story the next time we are together.

As a reminder, if you have not subscribed to BlenCouragesU.com, please do so! It’s free and a good place to get the encouragement, inspiration and information based the Word of God! Additionally, you can also see what we are up to on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram. Also, if you so inclined, join us Thursday nights––we are LIVE on YouTube 8:05EST/7:05CST. You can also listen in and subscribe to the podcast on Stitcher Radio Google Play, and Apple Podcasts.

Thank you SO much for stopping by. God bless, keep and make His face to shine upon you as you #StayOnTheWall!

Love,

BCU

Your choice: Store or stew?

Hey there BCU Family!

Typically, you have the option of listening to our podcast, reading the notes or both. For this post, because of the informal format, please tune into the podcast recording and refer to the written post for the highlights. We pray the post blesses and encourages you. If so, please thumbs up AND leave a comment! Thank you and enjoy the post!

Podcast highlights:

    • A couple of members of the BCU Youth Squad were talking about the cost of making unwise choices.
    • We talked through the story of Esau in a “21st century way” while keeping the integrity of the Scripture.
    • When we operate in our flesh or out of emotion/impulse, we will always make foolish now decisions that will effect us negatively later.
    • Even when we feel “pressed” we should stop and ask God what to do. His way will always be right.

Scripture references

Genesis 25:28-34

28 And Isaac loved Esau, because he did eat of his venison: but Rebekah loved Jacob.
29 And Jacob sod pottage: and Esau came from the field, and he was faint:
30 And Esau said to Jacob, Feed me, I pray thee, with that same red pottage; for I am faint: therefore was his name called Edom.
31 And Jacob said, Sell me this day thy birthright.
32 And Esau said, Behold, I am at the point to die: and what profit shall this birthright do to me?
33 And Jacob said, Swear to me this day; and he sware unto him: and he sold his birthright unto Jacob.
34 Then Jacob gave Esau bread and pottage of lentils; and he did eat and drink, and rose up, and went his way: thus Esau despised his birthright.

Hebrews 12:15-17

15 Looking diligently lest any man fail of the grace of God; lest any root of bitterness springing up trouble you, and thereby many be defiled;

16 Lest there be any fornicator, or profane person, as Esau, who for one morsel of meat sold his birthright.

17 For ye know how that afterward, when he would have inherited the blessing, he was rejected: for he found no place of repentance, though he sought it carefully with tears.

Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, and cometh down from the Father of lights, with whom is no variableness, neither shadow of turning (James 1:17).

If ye then, being evil, know how to give good gifts unto your children, how much more shall your Father which is in heaven give good things to them that ask Him?  (Matthew 7:11).


The bottom line here BCU Fam, is that once we acknowledge God in our decision-making,    He WILL direct our paths (Proverbs 3:6). While His instructions may feel like a “loss”, we have to remember our finite ways and thoughts are beneath God’s perfect ways and thoughts (Isaiah 55:8-9).  And as a good Father, His way will set us up for success every time, so we WILL win.

So BCU Fam, I know I’ve struggled with the store and stew situation before, but I am GRATEFUL that the Lord was/is so patient with walking me through asking, trusting and waiting. What about you?  Maybe you’ve mastered the impulsiveness with God’s help? Let’s talk about it in the BlenCouragesU.com chat section below!

As we wrap up, if you have not subscribed to BlenCouragesU.com, please do so! It’s free and a good place to get the encouragement, inspiration and information based the Word of God! Additionally, you can also see what we are up to on Facebook, Twitter,  and Instagram! You can also listen in and subscribe to the podcast on Stitcher Radio , Google Play, and Apple podcasts!

Thank you SO much for stopping by. God bless, keep and make His face to shine upon you as you #StayOnTheWall!

Love,

BCU

Declaring independence from “foolishmess!”

Hey 👋🏾 there BCU Family!

As usual, you have the option of listening to our podcast, reading the notes or BOTH. In any case, we pray the post blesses you. If so, please thumbs up or leave a comment! Thank you and enjoy the post!

I wanted to share an “interesting” experience or maybe test that echoes the importance of prayer, and exercising wisdom so your are free from “foolishmess”.

Years ago, I was at a conference at a hotel where a handsome guy from across the aisle and I made eye contact and smiled. You know, just a friendly “hi”.  After the conference let out, as I went to run an errand, I ran into “Eye Contact!”  After some initial conversation, he very politely asked what I was doing later, where I was going to eat (all okay) and THEN he asked “could he “holla at me” after my errand (insert face of horror here). While I do not recall my exact response, it was time to exit the conversation.  As I departed, I told the Lord if this man was going to be frippery, he needed to just go away so I didn’t have to deal with him again. Ugh.

As I made my way back from my errand and through the lobby,  I heard “yo”, but I kept it moving. I heard “YO!” again. Then I heard “YO!” loud and close behind me. My curiosity said, “who is that hollering like that?!” I turned and it was Eye Contact!! Now remember, BCU Fam, I’m quite grown; I haven’t seriously been called “yo” probably since I was in high school and did not like it then. Oh, but it gets better, y’all.

So, now that he has my attention by default, he asks me to call him. And not on his cell, but in the room he was staying in, as he is looking for piece a paper to write down this valuable information On top of that, he was now speaking in hushed tones! Hello? Seriously? Ya’ll can draw your own conclusions on what Eye Contact was thinking. I’m thinking, is this happening right now? What kind of monkeyshine is this? Are men still acting like this who are over age 35? Seriously?!

While I was disgusted by Dude trying to run a game on me, I thank God for helping me to think and recognize the trick of the enemy. What happens is, the enemy likes to send a decoy to derail you when you’ve been waiting and trusting God for your blessing. Let’s review the “highlight reel” in this guy’s game, so you can declare your independence from foolishmess.
1)  The approach:

Any gentleman who really wants to approach a lady will NOT address her by “yo”. And a real lady won’t answer to that, either. That street talk is not àpropos for a virtuous woman whose price is far above rubies (Proverbs 31:10).

2) The pursuit

When a man wants to get to know you, he will ask you for YOUR number and pursue you, rather than him telling you to pursue him. That’s against the natural order of things! Yes, it’s 2017 and while clothes and slang has changed, men do NOT value anything handed to them! By nature men are hunters and like a challenge–they like to work for what they get! Genesis 29:20 says Jacob worked seven years for Rachel, but it seemed like a few days because of the love he had for her. He did not ask Rachel to do the work while he chilled! He happily worked to get her. Sure, the customs have changed in terms of obtaining a wife, the principle still applies–he should happily do the work in pursuing you.

3) The Conversation

I know this is obvious, but is worth a revisit. No gentleman should act like he’s worried about seeing you in public. I have heard, “oh he’s shy” and “sometimes you have to help them along”. I don’t discount shyness or advocate women giving men a hard time “just cuz”. There is NO excuse for ANY MAN to be looking over his shoulder and whispering while talking to you. That’s code for married, engaged, attached, or scouting out his next prey.

What can happen to those of us who have been waiting, when we are approached by someone (rather than the one) we can respond in emotion versus wisdom–especially when we’ve been waiting awhile. Emotion says, at least we met in a store, not a club. Emotion says, at least he works part-time. Emotion says, at least he attends church occasionally.  Emotions says, he has potential.  And anytime we have to justify some of these areas which should already be shored up, we are walking in emotion versus wisdom. James 1:5 says God gives wisdom liberally for the asking. Why make foolish, emotional decisions unnecessarily? Better to not get into a situation than get caught out and live with the consequences.

With God’s help, do NOT be the low-lying fruit that any man can come by and pluck off the vine. The sweetest fruit is at the top of the tree and requires some work by the person who wants it—it’s okay for the gentleman to pursue you. If he really wants to get to know you, he will put the work in.  Know your worth and trust that good and perfect gifts come from God (James 1:17). If the “gift” doesn’t line up to what’s good, it’s NOT from God—-reject it, keep waiting and renewing your strength like Isaiah 40:31 reminds us! God has not forgotten you, BCU Fam! Your blessing is enroute according to His will and perfect wise timing.

So what encounters have you had with the opposite sex (women sometimes get out of order as well), that took you by complete surprise? Let’s talk about it in the comments section!

In the meantime, if you have not subscribed to BlenCouragesU.com, please do so! It’s free and a good place to get the encouragement, inspiration and information based the Word of God! Additionally, you can also see what we are up to on Facebook, Twitter Instagram, and  YouTube! You can also listen in and subscribe to the podcast on Stitcher Radio , Google Play, and iTunes!

Thank you SO much for stopping by. God bless, keep and make His face to shine upon you as you #StayOnTheWall!