I haven’t completely figured out the official cutoffs, but it’s generally accepted that I am a late Generation X’er. There are many things that differentiate us from other generations but I believe one of the greatest differences is that we are a passion driven generation. Before us, the Baby Boomers and the Silent Generations were all focused on potential. To this day, Boomers are concerned that their grandchildren live up to their potential by pushing education and getting a good job. Think about the civil rights movements, feminism, and the space programs of the sixties and early seventies, and you will see how much that generation wanted to maximize the capacity of what they could do. I was raised and educated by that generation, and they are still watching me to make sure I live up to my potential. (more…)
Have you ever heard the saying “too heavenly minded, that you’re no earthly good”? Well clichés are cliches for a reason, because this is a true statement. One of the greatest criticisms of the Christian faith is our preoccupation with heaven and what happens after we die. This fascination is particularly prevalent in the African-American church, because historically black slaves were taught that we should only expect our reward in heaven, and that teaching just remained a fundamental philosophical fixture. In fact, I can not recall a funeral, in a black church, that I did not hear the song, “Going Up Yonder”. It doesn’t stop there. The church at large sings “I’ll Fly Away”, “Sweet By And By”, and “When We All Get To Heaven” with a seemingly greater fervor than others. (more…)
So here we are AGAIN and unfortunately, lessons have still not been learned, and more black men and women are dead at the hands of police. Now add to that police are also dead at the hands of angry people. I wrote a piece called, Not Like This, back on December 1, 2014, and it is both sad and scary how this message is so relevant today; seeing as though this will be the 3rd time in less than 2 years we are back in the same place [also see (Still) Not Like This]. So here it is again with a few more names and details changed, because this is the same problem on a different day … (more…)
Let’s just face it. We live in a generation that has serious trust issues. With a majority of us born, or brought up in single parent households, or slit families, we have come accustomed to broken promises. Not only that, but the things that had become bedrock, such as the government or the economy, have shifted quickly to sand. All of us, no matter where we are from, have been let down by something or someone who should have held us up; so we live on guard. And people wonder why Donald Trump’s “wall” is so popular; it is because we are so used to insulating ourselves and shutting others out. Everybody’s played the fool, and no one wants to be a fool again.
It’s no wonder why people look cynically at believers in Christ. Especially, when we ourselves fail to live up to our own standard, people find it hard to believe that Jesus can be trusted. We, who are believers, tell them that Jesus doesn’t fail, and they struggle to accept it, because everything else has failed around them. It’s easy to judge others when they lose faith, but if we are honest, even the most devout has questioned, if this faith walk is all worth it. It takes courage, to make yourself self vulnerable to anyone, especially someone you can’t see; because no one wants to be a fool.
If you’re someone who struggles with trusting the Lord, I understand. For real. I get it. But let me encourage you to give Him time, and watch Him work. There will be moments that you will feel let down, but if you continue on with Him. You will see how He used that for your good. There will be situations where you will wonder if it’s all worth it, but keep trusting Him, and He will make it all worth the while. If you don’t want to be a fool, put your trust in Him!
“But blessed is the one who trusts in the Lord,
whose confidence is in him.
They will be like a tree planted by the water
that sends out its roots by the stream.
It does not fear when heat comes;
its leaves are always green.
It has no worries in a year of drought
and never fails to bear fruit.”
Jeremiah 17:7-8, New International Version
© 2016 Derek J. Murphy Enterprises, and I AM KINGDOM Publishing, All Rights Reserved.
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“Don’t Want To Be A Fool” was written and produced by Luther Vandross and Marcus Miller. Performed by Luther Vandross. Released 1991.
In the wake of tragedies and catastrophes, the question is always asked, “How can God allow such things to happen?” While many Christians may roll their eyes at such a notion, I honestly believe it is a fair question. Let’s be real. There are some things that happen, that if I were an all-powerful God, I would stop. If I were an all-knowing God, by my own estimation, certain things would never be allowed. But the simple fact remains that we are not God, and most importantly God is NOT like us! (more…)
I’ve been told all my life to never doubt God. Doubting what God can do has never been an issue for me, because I believe, and always have believed that God can do ANYTHING. Growing up with Old Testament stories of God’s miraculous power, and the New Testament examples of Jesus and the Apostles doing magnificent things caused me to understand God’s unlimited ability. My grandmother and my father always prayed the acknowledgement of God being able to do “anything but fail.” So, I never struggle with believing in what God CAN do. My struggle, like many of you, is with what God WILL do, and particularly FOR ME! (more…)
We live in an age of information. Anything we need to know is readily available at most of our fingertips. “Siri?” or “Ok Google” opens up a wealth of trivial to vital data, and the beautiful thing is that we don’t even have to process it anymore. If you need to know something, you can. Instantly. Unfortunately, more information does not always make us wiser. (more…)
Have you ever awakened, gotten your workout in, made your smoothie or your coffee, checked to make sure the clothes in the dryer were dry, but forgot to pray? We’ve all done it. For some, it can mess up the whole day, while for others, it really doesn’t make a difference. Prayer is perhaps THE most important activity of the day, yet so many of us neglect to do it.
I have a niece who is a tad bit ratchet. You know the type of girl who is in touch with her inner ghetto, and will pull that side out when the occasion arises (I must admit, I’m a tad bit ratchet myself). Well, one day we all were visiting my parents, her grandparents, and I guess my wife and daughter were extra cute because all I heard was, “YASSS! YOU BETTER WORK THAT …(hair, dress, shoes I’m not certain which) … YASSS!”
She always tickles me … (more…)
I can remember very vividly, my daycare school. It’s not too far from where i live now, so every time we pass by, I’m taken back. I remember getting into it with this boy; Sidney! He and I were both pretty husky boys and I guess we battled it out for playground dominance. We didn’t like each other one bit! But that was short-lived, once we discovered that we lived only on block from each other. As 3 and 4-year-old kids, we quickly forgot the things that divided us and just simply decided to play and have fun. (more…)