Category Archives: change

You – Version 2.0

If you will take just a moment to observe all of creation, you can’t help but notice that everything that has been created is continually improving and becoming better. You were made in the image of God and you are a work in progress, which means that you are a part of the Master’s Master Piece, created to become a better version of yourself. Becoming a better version of yourself does not happen by accident, but by taking very intentional steps here are a few of the steps that we all need to take to become the better version of who God created us to be.

Three Steps To Becoming A Better Version of Yourself!

1.) Believe You’ve Got The Power! “18 And Jesus came and spake unto them, saying, All power is given unto me in heaven and in earth.’ -Matthew 28:18 God is all powerful and God flows His unlimited to power through His Son Jesus Christ into our lives. This unlimited supernatural power enables us to live a life that is beyond anything that our limited human mind can comprehend or dream. You’ve got the power, but you have to believe it for it to become active and effective in your life and living.

You have spiritual, mental and physical power! The power of God that flows to and through your life is not limited to just one area, but instead flows to every area of your life, enabling you to become all that you were created to become in blessing others and giving glory to God.

In Philippians 4:13 the Scripture teaches that “I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me!” We need to personalize this verse and allow it to empower our faith to help us believe that all things are possible with God, our Creator.

I challenge you to: Say it, believe it and live your life in it’s power!

2.) Get Active And Stay Committed! “19 Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost:” -Matthew 28:19 gives us the command to go in that power that God has given us and make disciples. You know you’ve got it, when you can’t help but share it with others. As we keep working on ourselves, before we know it – we are helping others, which is why it is very important to remember: You can’t give to anyone else what you don’t possess!

3.) Remember: Team Work Makes The Dream Work! “20 Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you: and, lo, I am with you always, even unto the end of the world. Amen.” -Matthew 28:20 explains that the best example is example and so we need to live our lives out loud and proud by coming together and working together to be a blessing to one another. There is no “I” in Team, but there is an EAM = Everyone Achieves More! Remember: God Plus Me Equals A Majority and with God and me working together with His other special creations, anything is possible…

What Difference Does Jesus Make?

I occupy a lot of different roles. When I was born, I became the son of David and Martha Jo Harvell. Eventually I became know as Michael Joe to most folks, that is until I got married and then I became Joy’s Husband. I have been known as the chubby blond headed guy with blue eyes, a pretty good cook, a decent teacher, a not bad writer and a host of others things. When I went to Pastor my first church, I became known as Pastor, Preacher or Rev. After Joy and I were married for several years, we had our daughters Gracie and eventually Hope and I became Gracie & Hope’s Dad. To some folks I am a friend, to some an encourager and to some, just a goofy guy that loves Jesus. I’ve actually have more roles and titles than I have time to write about. I remember when I was younger hearing a Preacher preach a message and he asked the question: “Do you want a title or a testimony?” As a young kid, I thought: “Why not both???”

I hear people all the time say: “I love Jesus” or “I know Jesus as my Lord and Savior.” And that sounds really good, but I can’t help but wonder: “DO WE REALLY KNOW WHO JESUS IS AND IF WE DO, SHOULDN’T THAT MAKE A BIG DIFFERENCE?”

What Do You Think Of When You Think of Jesus?

There Are Many Different Pictures of Jesus! A lot of different beliefs, many of them in conflict with one another. For us to be so sure that we know Jesus and have a relationship with him, we should be able to articulate from personal experience who he is and what he has done in our lives, but often, we just repeat what we have heard or been taught, because the truth is: We know about Jesus, but we don’t really know Jesus.

Whosoever shall confess that Jesus is the Son of God, God dwelleth in him, and he in God.” -I John 4:15

Some people don’t see Jesus at all. Out of all the ones that do see Jesus, many only see him as a good man or an interesting teacher. When we see Jesus, we need to see him as he really is, in all of his glory and splendor. We need to see him as the humble, loving and faithful teacher that taught and teaches us a better way to do this thing called life. We need to not just say we believe, but prove we believe with the way we live our life, in the things we say and do. When we accept Jesus as God’s son and the perfect sacrifice for our sin, the evidence that it (he) is real is that our relationship with Jesus begins to change, develop and grow us into something more magnificent than we could ever dream or imagine.

We Know That We Know Jesus When:

We see Jesus as God’s Son! Jesus is not just a man. Jesus is the God/Man. Jesus is God come to earth, to live in the flesh, to show us through a living, breathing, physical example how to live, grow and be blessed in this life and for all eternity. And Jesus gives us the way and will to reclaim our rightful place as God’s special creation, made in God’s image and all that comes with that amazing truth. We know that Jesus is God’s son, but we have to do more than know it, we have to believe it and believe it in such a way that it changes our life from the inside-out.

We see Jesus as our Savior! The realization that I can open up my life to God and know Him in a real and personal way is amazing. The belief that I can have my very own personal connection with the supernatural power of the Almighty is incredible. And to think that all of this blessing is found in and through God’s Son Jesus, who made a way for us where there was no way is the icing on the cake. There is nothing we can do to make our messed up selves right with our God, but if we will accept and believe in the gift of His son, Jesus will become our Savior, cleanse us from all unrighteousness and restore us to a real and right relationship with Him that allows His blessing of forgiveness and power to flow to and through our lives.

We see Jesus as… Who or what do you need to see Jesus as today? Stop playing pretend games, get dissatisfied with just barely getting by and get to know Jesus and all the roles He can fulfill in your life by helping you to fulfill all the roles you were created for. Jesus is everything we need him to be and so much more, we just simply have to receive and believe…

Running On Empty!

One of the things I began to notice in my life as I got older was how often I allowed myself to get to the place where I was “running on empty”. I started to understand that I wasn’t trying to run on empty, in fact, I was trying to fill myself up, but was using the wrong fuel. Often while we are busy filling our ego, we are emptying our spirit and this is no way to live, not if you want to live the life of blessing you were created for.

The old saying: “What you feed will grow!” is more true than ever and if we are honest, a lot of us have been feeding the wrong animal, while neglecting what really matters. This is why the Scriptures are so important to our figuring out this thing called life and why we need to read them and seek to put them into practice everyday. Even baby steps in the right direction produce progress.

5 Let your gentleness be known to all men. The Lord is at hand. 6 Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication, with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to God; 7 and the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus. -Philippians 4:5-7

We’ve already learned that God does not promise us happiness, but He does promise us joy and if we will allow the joy of the Lord to be our strength, it will help us to live blessed lives that produce happiness. So the goal then, is to fill up your “JOY TANK!”

Filling Up Your Joy Tank!

The first strip to filling up your Joy Tank: Become Known As A “Take It Easy” Person! A take it easy person is gentle, reasonable, wise and able to handle whatever life throws their way! It is important to remember that gentleness is not the absence of strength, but strength that is disciplined and under control. This is the goal for this life and is a work in progress until when Christ returns!

The second step to filling up your Joy Tank: Don’t Worry About Anything & Pray About Everything! It is very important to remind ourselves that worry is present when faith is absent! Let me say that again, because we usually miss it. WORRY IS PRESENT WHEN FAITH IS ABSENT! If you have worry in your life, then you are not exercising belief/faith/trust in God and His promises. The key to your success lies in you being able to replace your worry with faith and the best way I know to do this is by taking time to have conversation with our Creator. Remember: Prayer is conversation and conversation involves speaking and listening! So, talk to God and tell God what is on your heart and mind and then make sure that you are listening for His instruction, guidance and wisdom.

The Third Step To Filling Your Joy Tank: Let God’s Peace Guard Your Heart And Mind! It is very important to remember one of the major life truths that we often forget: “You are in charge of you!” Whatever you are – you have made the choice! Wherever you find yourself, chances are it is because of decisions you have made. We can waste our time blaming everyone and everything else, but that will not change who or what we are. What will change the who and where is our making the choice and decision to do something about it! Here’s a simple question that can help to clear things up: Are you what you want to be and are you who God created you to be??? If not, join God in creating a better, new and improved version of yourself. It will be an amazing journey and you will find that it is amazing where you can go on a full tank!