Friday, October 29, 2010

Halloween Blood Drive

Today is the annual Halloween blood drive which I host with editorial cartoonist Marshall Ramsey. It's a project we teamed up together on three years ago, hoping to bring more awareness to the constant need for blood donations in the state of Mississippi.

It began early this morning at 6am and will conclude at 6pm so you'll have plenty of time to give blood and get back home before the Friday night football games! Every donor receives Marshall's t-shirt designed especially for this event as well as free Ag Museum passes to their trick-or-treating event. Those arriving around lunch time will get free lunch provided by The Pizza Shack. Plus, Social Agenda and The Bulldog is giving away a his and her's fall makeover, valued at $300 for the guy and gal!

So take time today to come and donate blood at Mississippi Blood Services on Lakeland Drive. When you give, people live!

Monday, October 25, 2010

Is Your Fruit Harvestable?

My children have been learning the fruits of the spirit which are love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control (Galatians 5:22). Last year, they learned a short song in their Sunday school classes which helps them remember what they are. If you are in Christ, you are to exhibit those fruit in every day life. The fruit of the Spirit isn't negotiable and it isn't ala carte' where we can pick the ones we want and leave the rest. Fruit is meant to be harvested. When you harvest something, you pick it and share it with others. Fruit has a harvest value.

Those fruit, or gifts, are with us until the day we die. But the devil will try to draw you to the wrong mate, the wrong church, the wrong job and anything else, if you listen, because he knows you have a harvest value in God's Kingdom. If the devil can get you off the mark, he can spoil your fruit.

Romans 11:29 says, "for God's gifts and his call are irrevocable." The gifts God gave you and the call He has upon your life cannot be altered. The harvest value you have can and will affect those around you.

Satan won't bother you if he knows you have no harvest value to him.

Friday, October 22, 2010

What Is Your Destination?

(Let me go ahead and warn you, this is deep. God has been dealing with me on something in particular so I'm sharing what the Holy Spirit has been telling me this week. Maybe you find yourself in the same position!)

Do you believe God has a destination for you? Think about it for a second. Do you have a sense that God has something greater in mind for you for do or for you to be? Perhaps it's a new career or a better relationship with someone. In your spirit, you know He has something else better for you but it's difficult to see right now because of what you're currently facing. All through the Bible, God showed people their destination without showing them what they were going to have to go through first to get there. Often times we run up against a wall and think that must be our destination, but it isn't.

God told Abram (later to be called Abraham) what He had planned for him in the form of an heir. God told Abram in Genesis 15:5, "Look up at the heavens and count the stars--if indeed you can count them. So shall your offspring be." Before Abram went through trying to create his heir through his maid servant Hagar, God showed him stars. Ishmael was just a trick of the devil. But God showed Abram his son Isaac!

God showed Moses and the children of Israel their Promised Land of Canaan in great details and what He was going to bring them to. In Exodus 3:17 God said to Moses, "I have promised to bring you up out of your misery in Egypt...and land flowing with milk and honey." If you do as the children of Israel did and begin focusing on the giants in your life and the wilderness, you begin to think that is your destination, but it isn't. God never promised them the wilderness. He promised them Canaan!

What God has brought you to, He will bring your through. The storm is not the issue in your life. The storm is just an interruption. The other side of the storm is your destination! In order to reach that destination God has planned for you, He's got to bring you through something first. The trial you are currently going through in your life is not the end. It is temporary, so don't camp out there. Be ready to move to the other side!

Thursday, October 21, 2010

What's In The Fridge?

The Clarion Ledger newspaper did an article in last Sunday's "Food" section on what's in the refrigerators of some local people. They asked to do an interview and come take a peek inside the Bassett frig. Here is a link to the full article:

Several people sent me emails and noticed the bandaids on Will's legs. What is it with little boys and their scrapes and falls?

Monday, October 18, 2010

The 3 Kinds Of People

There are yesterday people, today people and tomorrow people.

In John 8, we read about the woman who was caught in adultery. The Pharisees brought her to Jesus. Verse 3 says, "They made her stand before the group and said to Jesus, “Teacher, this woman was caught in the act of adultery. In the Law Moses commanded us to stone such women. Now what do you say?” After Jesus made His point to the Pharisees and they left, he told her in verse 11, "Go now and leave your life of sin."

The Pharisees saw her past, but Jesus saw her future. Do you have anyone in your life who resemble them? The enemy would rather discuss your past than your future. But God said in Isaiah 42:19, "Behold, I am doing a new thing." God didn't say he was doing a renewed thing or an old thing, but a new thing.

God is getting ready to do something powerful in your life. Don't let yesterday people hold you into tomorrow.

Friday, October 15, 2010

Leaving A Legacy

I was riveted to the television Tuesday night after returning from speaking in Belzoni. After happening upon the first Chilean miner rescue, I couldn't turn off the set. I had to watch the second miner ascend to the surface, the third, and so on. To see the utter joy on each miner's face and to imagine what their family members were going through made me emotional. Each miner is sure to have a story to tell and each will leave a legacy based on their harrowing experience and how they made it through.

Job 5:7 says, "Yet man is born to trouble as surely as sparks fly upward." Your life and my life will be marked by suffering. None of us are immune. Some of our crisis will be small; some of them will go on for years. Some may even be permanent. But how will those rough patches, challenges, heart breaks and failures define your legacy?

After crossing the Jordan River, God told Joshua that they needed to remember how far He had brought them. God even did a miracle before them by stopping the flow up the river and having the waters pile up. Joshua told twelve men in Joshua 4:4, “Go over before the ark of the Lord your God into the middle of the Jordan. Each of you is to take up a stone on his shoulder, according to the number of the tribes of the Israelites, to serve as a sign among you. In the future, when your children ask you, ‘What do these stones mean?’ tell them that the flow of the Jordan was cut off before the ark of the covenant of the Lord. When it crossed the Jordan, the waters of the Jordan were cut off. These stones are to be a memorial to the people of Israel forever.”

The Bible calls us to be intentional with our life, obedient, putting our faith in the Lord, consulting His will before every decision, seeking His heart and knowing Him more.

Think about the life you're living now. What will your legacy be to your children, your grandchildren, and so on? Through every victory and defeat you've encountered over the years and the years to come, will they be able to see the hand print of God on you?

Monday, October 11, 2010

The Need To Be Free

I traveled to Natchez last weekend to speak to the ladies at Parkway Baptist Church. We had so much fun that I almost wished I didn't have to leave. Even more, I was honored they asked me back as their conference speaker for the second year in a row. Thank you, Parkway!

Driving back, my mind began to wander as I thought about the topic of forgiveness. Total forgiveness is a miracle in itself in what Christ accomplished for us on the cross. But when someone speaks untruths about me or hurts my feelings, do I totally forgive them? It's so easy to say, "I forgive," but when their name comes up in a conversation, those old feelings begin to fester like a deep-rooted cyst that's reappeared.

When Jesus told us to forgive, His ultimate goal was our freedom. You can't be free from something if it has a hold on you and that's exactly what unforgiveness does. There is no such thing as 50% or 80% forgiveness. It has either happened or it hasn't.

So how do you know you've truly forgiven someone? When you come in contact with them, you don't have any negative feelings toward them. It's almost as if you have completely forgotten what happened. Secondly, you won't let them feel intimidated by you. God doesn't do that to us, so why should be make someone feel uncomfortable for their past actions? Third, you'll have compassion on them and not the need to get even.

Colossians 3:12 says, "Clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience. Bear with each other and forgive whatever grievances you may have against one another. Forgive as the Lord forgave you. And over all these virtues put on love, which binds them all together in perfect unity." I don't read any room for negotiations in these verses, do you?

I look back now at some of the greatest hurts in my life with a grateful heart. I have learned more about myself through the pain others caused me than at any other time. And with each prick at my spirit, God seemed to elevate me to a higher level with Him and multiplied the blessings. Forgiveness is the ultimate act of love.

When you get free from unforgiveness, someone else gets free.

Friday, October 8, 2010

Being An Heir

In Galatians 4:1-7, Paul was trying to explain to the people of Galatia that as Christians, we are all heirs, or children, of God. "What I am saying is that as long as the heir is a child, he is no different from a slave, although he owns the whole estate. He is subject to guardians and trustees until the time set by his father. So also, when we were children, we were in slavery under the basic principles of the world. But when the time had fully come, God sent his Son, born of a woman, born under law, to redeem those under law, that we might receive the full rights of sons. Because you are sons, God sent the Spirit of his Son into our hearts, the Spirit who calls out, 'Abba,Father'. So you are no longer a slave, but a son; and since you are a son, God has made you also an heir."

An heir may have the desire to inherit his millions before it's time, (remember the prodigal son?) but he isn't mature enough until his father notices his maturity. Until the son is ready for his inheritance, he is put under tutors, guardians and trustees so he can learn more of how to live the Christ life and mature in various ways.

Everything God has allowed you to go through, God has been tutoring you for a later time.

It all boils down to obedience during the half-time, while we are learning more from the Lord. When you do something you want to do, that is called obliging. When you do something you don't want to do, that is obedience. Most people never get qualified to do more in this world for God's Kingdom because they want to oblige the Lord, but they don't want to obey the Lord.

What is your greatest desire right now? Could it be God hasn't allowed it to come because you aren't ready for your inheritance from Him just yet?

Barbie will be speaking at Parkway Baptist Church in Natchez Saturday, October 9 and First Presbyterian Church of Belzoni Tuesday, October 12. Barbie will also be signing her book at the Canton Flea Market (Sulm's tent on the Square) on Thursday, October 14 from 9:30am-Noon, and at the Mississippi College Homecoming Festivities on Friday, October 15 from Noon-1:30pm.

Monday, October 4, 2010

Just When You Think You're Ready, You Might Not Be

When I was a teenager, I wanted to drive a stick shift. I had a friend who drove a five speed and I thought it was neat watching her push the clutch in, switch gears, let off the clutch and still maintain speed. I begged her to let me drive it one day. I jerked the car into first gear, didn't do the pedals right and the car went dead on the road. Even though I had watched her drive it numerous times, I wasn't as ready to drive a stick shift as I thought I was!

Simon, would later be given the name Peter, could relate. After eating supper with Jesus and the disciples, Jesus told them he would be betrayed. Peter responded in Matthew 26:35, "'Even if I have to die with you, I will never disown you.' And all the other disciples said the same."

Peter was genuine about what he said! He was basically saying, "Jesus, I'm ready to do whatever you want me to do. I am on board with whatever that is!" And notice the rest of the disciples chimed in saying, "Me, too!" But Peter wasn't ready to move on to what God had for him next, even though he thought he could handle it.

Simon meant "to hear". Peter meant "rock". The distance between Simon and Peter was spiritual growth. That growth pattern included quite a bit of hearing or listening to God. You can read 1 & 2 Peter and see the growth that Peter had between his two names. He wasn't the same person whom Jesus initially met as a fisherman. After much growth in wisdom, faith, and some hardships, Peter became the rock Jesus said he would be and was ultimately the leader of the early Christian church in Jerusalem.

Spiritual growth happened all through the Bible. There was spiritual growth between Abram and Abraham; Sarai and Sarah; Jacob and Israel; Saul and Paul. They weren't the same people they started out being. Their testimony was different when they came into their maturity.

Although you and I may feel like telling God, "I can handle this. I know what I'm supposed to do. I'm ready for the next step," be patient in letting the Holy Spirit develop in you before you get ahead of God's will for your life.

Friday, October 1, 2010

Welcome, Fall!

Welcome, Fall! It's good to be back on the blog after taking off two weeks. Some of you have sent me emails, messages on Facebook and Twitter, and it's always nice to hear from you.

I had the pleasure of being a part of WLBT's Power of Pink event yesterday at Highland Village. I signed books there for a few people and visit with my friend, Miss Mississippi Sara Beth James.
Have you felt the change in the weather? I always enjoy the change in seasons. This transitional time doesn't last long here in Mississippi so enjoy the next few weeks.
Have you felt a change in your spiritual walk with the Lord? If you've gotten behind or too busy, start the seasonal change with your own personal change. This Monday, I'll share what the Lord has been teaching me lately.