Archive | March 2020

Be Still and Know… Our Refuge

As a means to encourage and settle the hearts of his people in Israel, the Lord God offers his himself. Psalm 46:10 As we read through the Psalm below, let us be reminded that sometimes he calls for the storm to calm down and other times, He calls his child to calm down.

God is our refuge and strength, A very present help in trouble.
Therefore we will not fear, Even though the earth be removed,
And though the mountains be carried into the midst of the sea;
Though its waters roar and be troubled, Though the mountains shake with its swelling. Selah

There is a river whose streams shall make glad the city of God, The holy place of the tabernacle of the Most High.
God is in the midst of her, she shall not be moved; God shall help her, just at the break of dawn.
The nations raged, the kingdoms were moved; He uttered His voice, the earth melted.

The Lord of hosts is with us; The God of Jacob is our refuge. Selah

Come, behold the works of the Lord, Who has made desolations in the earth.
He makes wars cease to the end of the earth; He breaks the bow and cuts the spear in two; He burns the chariot in the fire.

10 Be still, and know that I am God; I will be exalted among the nations,
I will be exalted in the earth!

11 The Lord of hosts is with us; The God of Jacob is our refuge. Selah

Who Is God?

…Be Still and Know

The question is Who Is God? As I ponder this question, I realize that this question is just asmuch for me as it is for all of God’s children. You see, while there may be those in the family of God who think,  why is this question being asked, “I know who God is,” why, doesn’t all of God’s children know who He is? While these may be valid questions they haven’t directly answered them. You may be surprised to know that a lot of us don’t truly know Him; It’s like learning our ABC’s, we sang them, we wrote them, (small and big letters) just about all of us had a “common”  knowledge of the alphabets. correct? Let’s say that after singing them, writing them, and recognizing them, etc., we never went any further than that.  Everyone would know that we have a “common” knowledge, but what does that mean to each child? Do I continue to ask, “Mama, want to hear me sing my ABC”s at age 18- yet singing your alphabets. Sure you know them, yes. you can write them, yes, you recognize them. It is not until we come to understand the real purpose for all that singing, writing, andbeing able recognize them- that is using them in sentences.Jesus in Matthew 16, asked his disciples, the same question”Who do people say that the Son of Man is?….They answered Jesus’question with the “common view”-that Jesus was one of the great prophets come back to life,(singing their ABC’s,). Then Jesus makes its personal,”But who do YOU say I am” (making your ABC’s into sentences).They are now at the point to “be still and know Him.”   I trust that you will continue to follow my post -There’s more to come.Thank you. 

Jesus is the answer

Joan Jackson

Sunday Devotional – The Servant Suffers

Sunday Devotional – This week’s lesson takes us back to the Prophet Isaiah as he foretells of how the Lord God’s offering on behalf of all of mankind (Isaiah 52:13 – 53:12) was abused, beaten and humiliated.

In dedicated detail, God uses Isaiah to paint a vivid description of what was permitted by his divine wisdom to demonstrate his love (John 3:16, Rom. 5:8). We, who are the beloved of God are reminded that we are loved with an everlasting love (Jer. 31:3).

Take this special opportunity to reflect and meditate on the depth, width and the extent of God’s love for us. How we can live in confidence and hope regardless of the varied circumstances and situations we may find ourselves.

Who Am I?

A few years ago I posed a question to the women’s Bible class that would help us to know one another better, the question was “Who Am I?” I instructed them to write out their responses and to return them to me. I was truly amazed at some the responses. For instance, one lady wrote a full summary of her relationship with Jesus Christ and how much she loved working in ministry and that she knew that God loved her, etc. etc.  And another told me that “God didn’t want her to spill out her sins of the past”

Who Am I?

I was totally dumbfounded by those responses? Had I not the assignment clear  enough? However, the majority of them responded appropriately. Please, understand, that I realize that not all of us are on the same page and therefore, confusion and misunderstandings happens. It’s the same thing among the body of Christ, sad to say, there is much confusion among the saints in their knowledge (or their lack of knowledge of Who Is God).

In the next few weeks I will be sharing information that will for some enhance our knowledge of God, and for others to grow in their knowledge of who God is.  We will be looking at the attributes of God. Hoping that you will follow along. Joan

Pulpit Points – Ultimate Praise

Today’s message entitled, “Ultimate Praise” is the last but not the least installment in the series “The Anatomy of Praise. The Anatomy of Praise is the compilation of Dr. Lamont E. Ricks, Associate Pastor here at New Berean Baptist Church designed to help us understand what praise really is and why it is important for us as Believers to incorporate praise in our every day life. For it is stated in the scriptures that the Lord inhabits or “enthrones the praises of his people” (Ps. 22:3)

Ultimate Praise – God Gives it All

Today’s message takes us to II Corinthians 5 where we are made aware that Ultimate Praise:

Model of Praise

In the Model of Praise, praise derived from at least six experiences

  • P – Pain from our past hurts
  • R – Regrets from decisions that were made based on our emotions
  • A – Abandonment by someone we loved or someone we thought cared for us
  • I – Isolated or ostracized by the crowd because of a certain stand or conviction of ours.
  • S – Setback. We thought we were on the road to recovery and the tables turned and things got worse
  • E – Expectation of something we’ve wanted for a long time, i.e. a godly spouse, a timely financial bonus etc and it has taken longer than we expected

All these things make for genuine praise to the Lord.

Sing for joy in the Lord, O you righteous ones;
Praise is becoming to the upright.
Psalm 33:1

Sunday Devotional – Corruption is Challenged

In our Sunday Devotional series of the month, we are continuing with Old Testament lessons on Accountability and Justice. The scriptures teach us that to much is given, much is required (Luke 12:48) and we should heed much to God’s warning.

Corruption is Challenged in every aspect and dimension of God’s order. No one can escape it as God demands we as Believers live to a standard higher than the one our world permits. As an example in the chronicles of the Acts of the Apostles (chapter 5) when Ananias and Sapphira attempt to deceived. There was immediate justice brought down on them in the presence of many to witness God’s righteousness.

In today’s lesson, the Lord deal and warns those who have the role to rule over his people are extremely held in high esteem. And by design, they are expected to live and oversee his people with a different level of urgency. We are encouraged to examine ourselves to ensure we are obeying the voice of the Lord.

Sunday Devotional – A Harsh Warning Against Injustice

Habakkuk 2:6-14

Our societies, communities both large and small have all been impacted by irresponsible and deceitful management of people and resources. Since the very beginning, sin and the subsequent refusal to repent of sin, injustices have led to the demise and destruction of these societies is only a matter of time.

The Prophet issues a harsh warning to those who are engaged in such behavior he calls evil. “Woe to him who covets evil gain for his house, That he may set his nest on high” (v9). Woe is another way of saying there is a great sorrow or distress to those it is referenced to’s there is a consequence associated to disobeying God’s established laws and an even harsher one to those who know the truth and fail to follow.

In this week’s lesson, we’ll examine how Israel regarded God’s word, how the leaders lead Israel, and what the Lord told them through His Prophet Habakkuk.

Pulpit Points -Unusual Praise

Unusual Praise – We who are born-again “usually can find a reason to praise the Lord our God. We look typically at the good things God has done in our lives, in the lives of others or the things He delivered us from. WE can call it usual because it flows automatically when we are expecting our so-called break-through or in our attempt to receive that break-through.

But is God’s wisdom, we cannot wait for a break-through to happen because it may not come when we want it too. It may not come at all (Hebrews 11:13) . It is in times like these we have the opportunity to offer up what Dr. Lamont Ricks, calls Unusual Praise.

Unusual Praise is the unscripted expression of honor and glory given to the Lord for who he is and what he is able to do. In today’s message, Dr. Ricks shares with us four encouraging points we should take into consideration regarding this special type of praise. For in times of distress and grief, we can find relief, hope and peace when we willfully offer up Unusual Praise.

  • Unusual Praise Causes A Shift in Our Environment (Acts 16:26-29)
  • Unusual Praise Can Usher Others Into A Right Relationship With God (Acts 16:30-35)
  • Unusual Praise Gives Us Confidence To Stand Up To Those Who Have Violated Our Rights (Acts 16:36-40)
The Anatomy of Praise – Praise is often born out of P-pain we experience, R-regrets we may have, seasons or moments of A-abandonment and I-isolation. It comes from various S-setbacks and unrealized E-expectations

Pulpit Points – Transitional Praise

In a continuation of his teaching series “The Anatomy of  Praise”, Dr. Lamont E. Ricks, shares today the whats and why for “Transitional Praise“. Sometimes in our walk with the Lord, we are going to be overwhelmed and it seems as through we cannot muster up enough strength to give God praise.

But in today’s message, Moses and the children are caught in the proverbial “rock and a hard place” scenario. After leaving Egypt and from under the hard taskmaster’s hand of the Pharaoh, Israel escaped only to  run into a wall know as the Red Sea. For over four hundreds year, Pharaoh handed the Israelites, task after task, lashing after lashing to build his empires. But God heard their cries and rescued them. when the came to the Red Sea, they demonstrated the attitude and mindset we are encouraged to display when we are compassed with woes on every side – Transitional Praise