Hold On!

When I think of these two words, I’m in a rubber raft headed down the Ocoee River and hitting some pretty big rapids. The guide in the boat has taught us how to hold on and specifically the times to hold one.  I’m really holding on to my paddle and I have my feet locked under the tubes and this is the extent of my holding on.  I tried to hold on, but I had my 12 year old son with me and he looked like he was getting tossed out and as I reached for him, the boat did the “taco” and shot me out into the rapids. That was a scary day because you truly can’t fight the current. As I did the float on my back down a couple more rapids, I was exhausted just trying to keep floating. I made it back into the boat and boy did I hold on.  Solomon challenged me to hold on to something else. Check this out….

“Your Word is a lamp to my feet and a light to my path”
 4 Then he taught me, and he said to me,
 “Take hold of my words with all your heart;
 keep my commands, and you will live.
Get wisdom, get understanding;
do not forget my words or turn away from them.
6 Do not forsake wisdom, and she will protect you; love her, and she will watch over you.
The beginning of wisdom is this: Get wisdom.
Though it cost all you have, get understanding.
8 Cherish her, and she will exalt you;
embrace her, and she will honor you.
9 She will give you a garland to grace your head
and present you with a glorious crown. ” (Proverbs 4:4-9 NCV)

He is telling me to HOLD ON to wisdom no matter what. Wisdom comes from Creator God and He will direct my path.  I’m still a child learning from my Father. I’m still learning things from my Dad here on earth. I’ve even learning things from my children. Even though I’m older and wiser now, I must keep learning. I’m never to old to be a wise follower of God. As I follow the Lord, day by day, seeking His wisdom and holding on to – I become a better husband, Dad, leader, a better friend and a better REALTOR.  I’m holding on to Wisdom with all I have!

 Pressing On!
Dwayne 

Don’t Forget

Sometimes when I go to the grocery store, I go without a list. I think I can remember all the things I need to buy.  I love texting because I can text Tina and asked if we need this or that. I think the older I get the more forgetful I become. I don’t ever want to forget to trust in the Lord. Check this out…

“Your Word is a lamp to my feet and a light to my path”
 1 My child, do not forget my teaching,
       but keep my commands in mind.
 2 Then you will live a long time,
       and your life will be successful.
 
 3 Don’t ever forget kindness and truth.
       Wear them like a necklace.
       Write them on your heart as if on a tablet.
 4 Then you will be respected
       and will please both God and people.
 
 5 Trust the Lord with all your heart,
       and don’t depend on your own understanding.
 6 Remember the Lord in all you do,
       and he will give you success.
 
 7 Don’t depend on your own wisdom.
       Respect the Lord and refuse to do wrong.
 8 Then your body will be healthy,
       and your bones will be strong. (Proverbs 3:1-8 NCV)

Trusting in God is basic to my relationship with Him. When I trust Him, He leads my life and directs my choices. When I trust Him, He will go with me anywhere and everywhere.

One of my favorite passages of all scripture is found in this chapter: “Trust in the Lord with all your heart and don’t depend on your own understanding. Remember the Lord in all you do and he will give you success.”  Other versions say that He will make your paths straight when you submit to Him.  I want to live my life remembering His promises and seeking His wisdom for the direction of my life and my business.  He’s the director of all of it!

Pressing On!
Dwayne

Wisdom

This is a word that I’m fascinated with. I used to think that wisdom came only with age. I’ve learned that it often deals more with experience than with age.  I think the reason I’ve always felt people older than me were automatically wise was because of their myriad of experiences.  I’m not saying that I don’t believe people older than me (which by the way, age is relative – I feel old most days!)  :-)   I am saying that age or simply experience is  NOT what makes a person wise.   Check out what Solomon had to say about wisdom…..

1 My child, listen to what I say
“Your Word is a lamp to my feet and a light to my path”
       and remember what I command you.
 2 Listen carefully to wisdom;
       set your mind on understanding.
 3 Cry out for wisdom,
       and beg for understanding.
 4 Search for it like silver,
       and hunt for it like hidden treasure.
 5 Then you will understand respect for the Lord,
       and you will find that you know God.
 6 Only the Lord gives wisdom;
       he gives knowledge and understanding.
 7 He stores up wisdom for those who are honest.
       Like a shield he protects the innocent.
 8 He makes sure that justice is done,
       and he protects those who are loyal to him. (Proverbs 2:1-8 NCV)

 I believe the wisdom that Solomon speaks of here is a wisdom that only comes from God.  I believe I can be wise and teach my children and others out of my experiences. Someone had to get burned in order to teach others that the stove is hot!  But I am saying that I want to learn things that can only be taught by God. He is the true source of wisdom!  Check this out….

 17 But the wisdom that comes from God is first of all pure, then peaceful, gentle, and easy to please. This wisdom is always ready to help those who are troubled and to do good for others. It is always fair and honest. (James 3:17 NCV)

God makes wisdom readily available for those who ask. In fact, all we have to do is ask and He supplies it. I want to walk closely with the Lord and seek His wisdom for any and every situation I’m faced with.

 Pressing On!
Dwayne

Listen

One of the things I’ve noticed as I get older is my hearing is not as sharp as it once was. My Dad used to warn me not to listen to so much loud rock ‘n roll when I was growing up. I do believe that over the years of listening to loud music has hurt my hearing. I especially liked my floor monitors pretty loud when playing live. Now that I’ve converted to “in ear monitors”, they are pretty loud too.

Solomon writes some very wise words throughout the Proverbs. He starts it off by challenging me to listen. Check this out….

“Your Word is a lamp to my feet and a light to my path”
  28 “Then you will call to me,
       but I will not answer.
    You will look for me,
       but you will not find me.
 29 It is because you rejected knowledge
       and did not choose to respect the Lord.
 30 You did not accept my advice,
       and you rejected my correction.
 31 So you will get what you deserve;
       you will get what you planned for others.
 32 Fools will die because they refuse to listen;
       they will be destroyed because they do not care.
 33 But those who listen to me will live in safety
       and be at peace, without fear of injury.” (Proverbs 1:28-33 NCV)

I was reminded not long ago about the “two ears and one mouth” thing and how we should listen twice as much as we speak. A good friend and partner of mine reminded me that we actually have 4 listening devices. We have two ears and two eyes. We should also listen for the non-verbal speech.

As I read the Word of God, I feel like He speaks to my heart even though I didn’t hear an audible voice. I believe it’s important to listen to Him when He speaks through others and then through His Word.  I want to be the best listener of God that I can be!

Pressing On!
Dwayne

Crank It Up!

I had the opportunity last night to hear a band called Paris Luna play at the AMP in downtown Carrollton. It was a great show. I simply love good live music. I like seeing the players play with passion that comes from deep inside.   Music is a special language that communicates to places in my soul that mere words can’t touch.  I believe the Lord loves good music. Check this out….

1 Praise the Lord!

“Your Word is a lamp to my feet and a light to my path”
    Praise God in his Temple;
       praise him in his mighty heaven.
 2 Praise him for his strength;
       praise him for his greatness.
 3 Praise him with trumpet blasts;
       praise him with harps and lyres.
 4 Praise him with tambourines and dancing;
       praise him with stringed instruments and flutes.
 5 Praise him with loud cymbals;
       praise him with crashing cymbals.
 6 Let everything that breathes praise the Lord. (Psalm 150:1-6 NCV)

 I grew up listening to all sorts of music.  The music I started out playing was old ballads of years gone by and love that was lost or found.  My Grandmother was from the mountains of Boone, NC and she could jam with some Appalachian style music. I still remember her playing in the nursing home on Sunday afternoons and entertaining the residents and the staff with her talent.

As I grew up, I discovered that playing music to praise God was incredibly fulfilling, as I would lead kids in a praise song.  I still find great joy in playing a song from my heart to His and have others join me in the journey.  I still love all styles of music. I also like to crank it up because music can communicate truth that cuts through the hardest of hearts and the hardest of hearing!

 Pressing On!

Humble

This is word that I was taught at an early age. The word carries with it some pretty self-explanatory descriptive terms such as: respectful, submissive, modest, unassertive and much more.  My parents modeled humility for me and out of my journey with the Lord, I’ve realized over the years how important it is to be humble. The Proverb writer said it pretty plain:

18 Pride leads to destruction;
       a proud attitude brings ruin. (Proverbs 16:18 NCV)
“Your Word is a lamp to my feet and a light to my path”

. We should certainly keep our pride in check at all times.  The Psalmist spoke clearly about his as well. Check this out….

1 Praise the Lord!
    Sing a new song to the Lord;
       sing his praise in the meeting of his people.
 4 The Lord is pleased with his people;
       he saves the humble.
 5 Let those who worship him rejoice in his glory.
       Let them sing for joy even in bed!
God is honored by all who worship him.
    Praise the Lord! (Psalm 149:1, 4-5, 9b NCV)

 I know that in our most recent recession, there were lots of wealthy people who ended up eating lots of humble pie. They were once quite wealthy, and now because of bank failures, business failures, they’ve lost a lot of material possessions. I know how that feels on a smaller scale. As I look at all my possessions and the income I produce with work, it is still all His. The Lord guides my earning and my spending. I want to eat humble pie often – I’ve actually acquired a taste for it! It’s been good for my soul as I walk with the Lord daily.  I find myself praising Him more often instead of being proud of me.

Pressing On!
Dwayne