Month: December 2013
Y.O.L.O.- Ecclesiastes 9:2-12
Please Watch the Video First…
So, what does “Y.O.L.O.” mean? Drake(rapper) explains it for us in his song The Motto, “Now she want a photo, you already know, though, You only live once: that’s the motto, nigga, YOLO”
Yep, you guessed it, Y.O.L.O means, You Only Live Once! While very few of us would be in a rush to adopt life lessons from a 25 year-old rapper like Drake, what he’s actually espousing is true. Well, yes, I know we know it’s true, but yes- We only live once! We only get one lifetime, one birth date and one death date. One birth certificate and one death certificate. Anyone, mostly everyone who is reading this post, will have on their tombstone, 19??-20??
However, what really matters, IMHO(in my humble opinion) is what we do, accomplish, aspire to be, be, and represent in that dash. Since we only live once, how will we fill in the time between the start and end dates? How will we make a difference, of course if making a difference matters? Who will we impact, if making an impact matters to us? Who will we love, assuming loving and being loved matters? How will we be remembered, if being remembered even matters? You get the point, right? Or maybe not!
Too often, I see Y.O.L.O. being interpreted like this! Make as much $$$$ as possible, Y.O.L.O.! Buy whatever I want to but, shop til’ I drop, put it in the bag, Y.O.L.O. Buy a fancy car, put rims on it, deck it out, Y.O.L.O.
Fuck(excuse my language) Sleep with as many people as possible, brag about it, on to the next one, Y.O.L.O. Move from man to man and woman to woman, no love, no commitment,Y.O.L.O. Rich get richer, poor get poorer, Y.O.L.O. Drink, drink, drink, blame it on the alcohol, Y.O.L.O. Smoke all day, smoke all night, Y.O.L.O. Turn Up, Y.O.L.O. Move up the corporate ladder, I don’t care who I sleep with, mess over, step over, or backstab, Y.O.L.O. Work hard, hard hard, hard, hard and neglect my family and myself, Y.O.L.O.
I hope my point is getting communicated!
So……….what’s my solution? Well, me being a preacher (excuse my above language, God ain’t through with me yet), I take my cue and directions in life from the Bible! While reading Ecclesiastes 9, a few verses stood out to me and I believe they will help you, just like they helped me!
In this text, the writer informs us that no matter how good or bad we are, sinner or saint, we’re all going to die! We all have the same fate! We all will have the same end (death), just some of us are going to end up in different places!
9:2 It makes no difference.[a] The same fate comes to the righteous and the wicked, to the good and the bad,[b] to those who are religious and those who are not, to those who offer sacrifices and those who do not. A good person is no better off than a sinner; one who takes an oath is no better off than one who does not. 3 One fate comes to all alike…
9:11 I realized another thing, that in this world fast runners do not always win the races, and the brave do not always win the battles. The wise do not always earn a living, intelligent people do not always get rich, and capable people do not always rise to high positions. Bad luck happens to everyone. 12 You never know when your time is coming. Like birds suddenly caught in a trap, like fish caught in a net, we are trapped at some evil moment when we least expect it.
So, what should we do? You guessed it……. Y.O.L.O
1. Be happy and enjoy life! I believe life is too short to be miserable, sad, depressed, downcast, hateful, and any other negative emotion. Instead, I truly believe that God desires for us to be
happy, no God desires for us to have Joy! God desires for us to enjoy his blessings, the life he has given us, the opportunities provided, but in a responsible way. The text says, 9:7 Go ahead—eat your food and be happy; drink your wine and be cheerful. It’s all right with God. I know what you’re thinking, “is he encouraging me to drink?” Look, we need to get over it, wine is in the Bible, so yes it’s okay to drink, but not get drunk! In Ephesians 5, the Bible warns us about getting drunk and in 1st Corinthians, not being enslaved by anything. Nonetheless, Be happy and enjoy life!
2. Enjoy your loved ones and those who love you! (verse9) God, has given us the gift of relationship, and those who we have been blessed to love and love us, we should enjoy and cherish!
3. Work hard at whatever you do! (verse10) Work will always be here! I believe in the Biblical wisdom of, “If you don’t work, you don’t eat!” However, I also believe that it’s our job to find our purpose and passions, and then work hard at it! Who wants to work hard at something they hate? Either way, like it or not, we’re still instructed to work hard! In fact, Colossians says,“3:23 Whatever you do, work at it with all your heart, as though you were working for the Lord and not for people. 24 Remember that the Lord will give you as a reward what he has kept for his people. For Christ is the real Master you serve.” So Work hard at whatever you do!
Song of the Day: Merry Christmas Baby from Chuck Brown!
I wish You a Merry Go-Go Christmas from the Godfather of Go-Go Chuck Brown!
Hard work and Grinding pays off!
Best of 2013: ET Inspires Anthony Pettis to the World Title
SOD (Sermon of the Day)- Marcus Cosby- The Irony of Affliction
“I Believe I’ll Testify” series – Psalm 119:71 – “It is good for me that I have been afflicted; that I might learn thy statutes.” The Irony of Affliction July 8, 2013 Wheeler Ave. Baptist Church – Houston, TX – Rev. Dr. Marcus D. Cosby, Pastor – To order, call the church: (713) 579-2753
Enjoy what You have and BE Happy!- Ecclesiastes 2:24-26, 3:12-13
I CONFESS, a lot has been on my mind recently, too much actually. I’ve allowed the enemy to alter my perspective; see lately I’ve viewed my problems bigger than my God, instead of God being bigger than my problems. Over the past 18 months, life has been turned upside down, I mean real crazy. In June/July 2012, I had a job I loved(working to keep students in school), fulfilling my call and purpose in Pastoring a church, just been fully ordained in the AME Church, just married, fresh off the honeymoon, making the most $$$ I’ve ever made (in the smallest town I’ve ever lived in),relationships with friends and ministry colleagues, sense of calling in my life, and my first child on the way– a bouncing Baby Boy! Now, I don’t want to engage in revisionist history, life wasn’t perfect, but I was in my groove!
Well, fast-forward to NOW(December 2013), I’m no longer working that job, instead I’ve had to take jobs to put food on the table and pay bills, not currently Pastoring(I miss this so much), not currently attending an AME church(praying about this one), still married(Erica is a blessing in my life), we work hard to re-create honeymoon experiences, making less $$$ than I did when I first came out of college with just one degree, a lot of those friends/ministry colleagues I haven’t spoke to since the wedding and beyond, still called to Pastor(praying about how that looks), in an new city that I’m trying to learn and enjoy(Charlotte), and the most devastating of all this is– we’ve lost 2 children, a boy and a girl!
So, needless to say, life has been a whirlwind. However, through all of this, I’ve grown closer to God! I pray more! I read my Bible more! I love my wife more! God’s grace has been with me, through all of this! It hasn’t been easy, some days are much better than others, but I know this storm will pass over! I’d be a liar if I said, the storm has passed, but it hasn’t! My wife and I are still healing and still grieving! Tomorrow, December 11, was supposed to be the due date of our daughter Brielle! That’s going to be tough for the both of us! My wife still hurts, because she hurts, I hurt! So, the storm is still here, but it’s passing over! Not too long ago, I heard Rev. Dr. Freddie Haynes say, “WE ALL have Storms in life, we’re either coming out of a storm, in the midst of a storm, or headed into a storm.” So, pray for us! Pray our strength!
So what’s my prescription to all of this? What does God’s word say to us during these times? Honestly, the Bible says a lot of things to encourage us and give us hope, but I’m going to leave you with the action item from my devotional this morning!
Ecclesiastes 2:24(GNT) The best thing we can do is eat and drink and ENJOY what we have earned. And yet, I realized that even this comes from God. 25 How else could you have anything to eat or enjoy yourself at all? 26 God gives wisdom, knowledge, and happiness to those who please him, but he makes sinners work, earning and saving, so that what they get can be given to those who please him. It is all useless. It is like chasing the wind.
Ecclesiastes 3:12 (GNT) So I realized that all we can do is be HAPPY and do the best we can while we are still alive. 13 All of us should eat and drink and ENJOY what we have worked for. It is God’s gift.
So, in closing, this is my resolve…..To be HAPPY and ENJOY the GIFTS of GOD! All of this happens, through PLEASING GOD! So, I resolve to PLEASE GOD and BE HAPPY!
For an added bonus, allow Bobby McFerrin to drive the message home!