MEDIOCRE WORSHIP

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I recently read a tweet from @WisdomMoon that said

What if we lived each moment of each day like God really is all-powerful?

This question brought to mind the many times I have personally been in a worship service where I may have not been all there. I am sure I am not the only one who has gone through these dry spells in our worshipful living. I have to admit that in these moments I simply forget who God is. I openly admit that I realize there is something missing in my relationship with God and that is all of me.

Many times we live a backwards life of worship. It’s an outside-in christianity versus an inside out. We go through the motions, we say the right things, read our bible superficially, and offer a routine praise in hopes that somehow what we are doing outwardly will somehow filter inside of us. I do not doubt that with time it could be possible that this outward worship lifestyle could have some impact on the inside but it will not be long-lasting.  Because, as before mentioned, the change on the inside is filtered. We have placed so many obstacles for God to work and move in us that we settled for feeling a little tingle during worship services. Our worship is nothing but mediocre at best.

What if we lived every day of our lives as if God were all-powerful? This is inside-out worshipful living. I seek him with in me before I read his word, before I sing a song, before I step out of my home and I stay in that place with him at all times and everywhere I go. When this happens there is no room for doubt. You walk and act in faith, even in the hardest of times. You place God in all you say and do and the world will see God through you. You preach without using words.

So what is the formula for this intimacy with God? It takes Effort. You know how they say a little bit goes a long way well that doesn’t apply here. You have to put in a lot of effort to making time to connect with God through prayer and his word. With that comes Commitment. You must be committed to further develop your relationship with God. Lastly passion will drive your efforts and support your commitment.

Are ready to step into a new season in your walk with God? He is ready to receive you. Be blessed!

 

33 And Counting

Its my 33rd birthday and i am dedicating this blog to this event. I have never been the type to.really celebrate my birthday. In fact 3 years ago I forgot my actual age and, when asked, I would say I was 28. So what is the big deal about this birthday? In a nutshell it’s all about Jesus.

My wife asked me the same question a couple of weeks ago and I had a hard time explaining the reason to her because, for whatever reason, I thought it might sound silly, but I am over that. As I anticipated this birthday I continued to think about the crucifixion of Jesus, our Lord and Savior. Many theologians believe that Jesus was crucified around the age of 33. There it is! To think that around this age he was crucified but beyond the crucifixion that he completed his mission to begin mine. I began asking myself what if that was me? What if this is the last of my days and know that soon I will be giving myself up to die? All these thoughts rattled my brain and then it hit me. Yes, He died so I might live but to live this life, in him,  I have to die to my previous life.

Here I am, reflecting on my last 33 years and along with the memories of things accomplished come the thoughts of those things that have yet to carry out. I think about Gods calling on my life since my mother’s womb. Before I was born and before my mother knew my sex God spoke to her in a dream and told her she was having a boy. He also selected my name and gave it to her in that same dream. When the time came to birth me out the doctors suggested she abort me because the chances of her dying during labor were really high. She was willing to sacrifice her life for mine and God saw her through the delivery. My life has had many ups and downs. In my walk with God I have made many poor decisions that kept me from fulfilling my purpose in Him and yet he hasn’t given up on me. You see, He died for all the negative decisions. He died for all my transgressions and there is nothing that I have done or could ever do that will surprise him. He has a plan and a purpose for all of us but there comes a point in our lives when we say I am willing to die to myself, my desires, my plans and let you live in and through me.

Its time to move on and move forward into what God has planned for me. Grab hold to him and all that he has declared for my life. I believe this is the year of the supernatural where God will be doing a dynamic move. I am 33 and counting.

– Isai Serrano / PSALMIST13

The Confident Worshiper

After almost a year of being a member of my worship team I had a break through of sorts in my worship. For many years I led worship at another church. It took me some time to adjust to this role being that I was a musician for so long before. I accepted Gods calling to be on this new platform but when the ministry closed its doors I began to question that call. For a long time my family and I felt like wanderers visiting different churches until the search ended. Now came the time to find my place back in ministry. After joining the worship ministry I was complacent taking a back seat and singing in the choir. Truth be told I still find it to be a comfort zone. Given the opportunity to lead, I was taken back and afraid that I was not good enough. I sort feared this larger audience and was intimidated by all the talent around me.  The church population is larger than the last and the quality of worship is at another level. I was and am being stretched, singing songs that I would not typically sing. God was working on me and my confidence.

A confident worshiper is one that understands his/ her calling from God. With that knowledge comes an identity.  I know who I am in Him and He has designed me and equipped me to worship like only I know how.  You can worship with confidence when its you behind the microphone and not an imitation of another worshipper. I am no BJ Putnam or Israel Houghton they have their anointing and calling. I won’t attempt to be that which God didn’t call me to be. It’s not going to work. You see God doesn’t just want you embrace your calling embrace the identity that comes with it. God doesn’t want a phony behind the microphone. He wants your voice, your style, and your worship and His anointing upon you to be manifested.  Worship with confidence today!

God + A Taxi

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Today I had a God moment of the rare kind. Have you ever had a rock speak to you? Well that is what happened to me. If you don’t know already, I live in New York City. The town known for hustle and bustle. My morning commutes are usually a mad dash as I live quite a long distance from the school teach in. Lets just say that if I were to take public transportation I would need to take a Ferry boat, 2 trains and a public bus for a total of 2 hours going and coming back home. That being said I drive through the unpredictable traffic burdened highways of New York  city, through 3 of its 5 boroughs. I notice that there was some traffic on route and deviated towards local streets in order to by pass the traffic. It was on this path that God spoke to me through an unexpected messenger.

I don’t know if you have been in a yellow cab or much less in a New York yellow cab, but they are known to be infamous for reckless driving. I speak as a driver and as one who has taken a few rides in these cabs. When you drive in New York your eyes just naturally spot yellow cabs around you, not because they are yellow but because you know that they might just cut you off with little notice. I can’t say that all cabbies are this way but definitely a vast majority. If you haven’t figured it out by now I spotted a yellow cab in my commute today and I thought that he was gunning to cut me off. I must admit that well I did not react the way I am sure God would of liked me to do so. Yes, I pushed forward and honked the horn as if to say ” your not getting in”. The traffic light is now red and I am lined up right beside him. At this point he rolls down his window to speak with me. I roll my window down, now feeling slightly convicted, to listen to his words and he said…

I was trying to pick up a passenger who is standing there but you couldn’t see that

I look to my left and low and behold there was someone waiting for the cab. There it was my God moment. My heart dropped and my spiritual ears, now open, were able to hear what God had to say.

I am trying to accomplish something, not only in you but in those around you but you can’t see that.

I am humbled in His presence asking for forgiveness for interfering with His purposes, for not looking for what He is trying to do, for not allowing Him to be God in all aspects of my life. I don’t know if this cab driver was a believer. I am honestly shocked that he would even open his window to speak out given the nature of New Yorkers and the attitude they typically have towards cab drivers, but I am glad that he was, for that moment, filled with the spirit of boldness. I was blinded by rush and an incorrect perception of this cab driver but now distraught that I could have been responsible for him missing the biggest fare and tip he ever got. I leave you with this verse:

Always be full of joy in the Lord. I say it again—rejoice! Let everyone see that you are considerate in all you do. Remember, the Lord is coming soon.

Don’t worry about anything; instead, pray about everything. Tell God what you need, and thank him for all he has done. Then you will experience God’s peace, which exceeds anything we can understand. His peace will guard your hearts and minds as you live in Christ Jesus.

Philippians 4

Build Me An Altar- pt.1

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Exodus 20 ( New living Translation )

24 “Build for me an altar made of earth, and offer your sacrifices to me—your burnt offerings and peace offerings, your sheep and goats, and your cattle. Build my altar wherever I cause my name to be remembered, and I will come to you and bless you. 25 If you use stones to build my altar, use only natural, uncut stones. Do not shape the stones with a tool, for that would make the altar unfit for holy use.

In my first post titled “Identity Crisis”, I wrote about the dangers of trying to be someone your not meant to be. I specifically made reference to our personal altars before the Lord and the dangers of not building it according to the God intended design. If you haven’t read it I would recommend it, not because I wrote it, but because I believe it will bless you as well. In this post I want to focus on the a general blueprint as dictated in Exodus chapter 20. God has been placing this in my heart for the past few days, “Build me an altar”. Lets break down the verses.

Verse 24: “Build for me an altar made of earth…”

I know that the original text was intended as an instructional guide or a how to, but I am a firm believer that everything in the Word is relevant and applicable to us today. This first portion of the scripture God request an altar to be made of earth. When I read this the first thing I thought of is the creation of man. Taking this back to our early days in bible school, in the book of Genesis, we learned that man was created from earth itself. We can, under this context, say that this altar is built from you, in you and by you. This humble altar would be built, in its most basic form, out of stones. Not just any stone but, as it is indicated in verse 25, natural uncut stones. I believe that these stones are made from the deepest and most difficult trials we go through for it is by way of trials that these we are spiritually shaped. There is purpose behind the problems. God desires that you to take those things that he has brought you through and out of and no matter how difficult the situation may have been, he would have you use it as a building block towards an offering to him. Don’t try to build your alter before the Lord with stones shaped with tools, that is to say,  your alter cannot be composed of your own accomplishments and achievements. Things that you have done as if to merit the favor of the Lord. He says “for that would make the altar unfit for holy use”.  You can build an altar under your own specifications and design so that it reflects or shows off who you are to all around you but you can’t fool God. Your offering will not rise an inch from the altar. He says “Build my altar wherever I cause my name to be remembered…” I ask you what is  one of your fondest memories in your walk with God? For many it would be a deliverance, a miracle, a time when he met the need or answered a long standing prayer. Take these moments and mark them in your mind and heart. Take the lesson learned and use it to build your alter then place your offering upon this altar of earth and stone.

So as Isaac asked his Father Abraham on the mountain, where is the sacrifice? We will discuss this in part 2 of “Build Me An Altar”