I Didn’t Get What I Deserved

Isaiah 53:4 – “He suffered the things we should have suffered. He took on himself the pain that should have been ours. But we thought God was punishing him. We thought God was wounding him and making him suffer.”

Last night on my way into Walmart, I noticed a man leaning against the outside wall. He looked dirty and disheveled. His bicycle was leaning next to him. As he started to walk away, while pushing his bike, I noticed a pronounced limp. It appeared he had some form of deformity to his extremity. He didn’t say anything to me. Yet, I quickly concluded he was a person who had a tough history.

foodAs I then walked through the grocery area, I started to ponder about him. I wondered what things this man had done in his life that had led him to where he was. For whatever reason, I caught myself imagining the bad decisions he had made in his lifetime… drug use, crime or the like, that would have reaped the place where he presently found himself. I had no problem reasoning why he had reaped what he had sown.

Unfortunately, we often make the mistake of seeing an individual who is in a poor place in life. Not in a place we would call prosperous, and then we somehow reason that he has reaped what he sowed. It all seemed very logical to me in my thoughts and reasoning.

Early this morning as I rose, I  read in scripture this text in Isaiah. I quickly began to realize the mistake in my reasoning.

Just as those around Christ reasoned that He deserved God’s punishment, I had reasoned, only by another’s appearance, that his actions and decisions must explain his place in life.

As believers we must know better. Christ did not deserve to suffer to the cross. He was not being punished by God. It was a part of the path that He chose to journey through in life that led him to his suffering on our behalf.

Today, strive to look at the world around you through the eyes of Christ.  For me, if I were to receive what I deserved, it would be far less than what I have in Christ Jesus.

My prosperity and success does not define my identity as a servant of the Most High God.

Have a blessed day.

~Dean Burnetti


I’m Lost

John 14:4-6 – “You know the way to the place where I am going.”  Thomas said to him, “Lord, we don’t know where you are going. So how can we know the way?”  Jesus answered, “I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.”

Many years ago, the phrase ‘l’m lost’ was something we heard and possibly said quite often. I remember when I first started practicing law that I kept in my car, a map of every major town in Central Florida. The reason was simply because I would often have to find a street and address on my map almost every day. There was no GPS.

mapToday, we’ve become so accustomed to our GPS that we rarely ever use the phrase ‘I’m lost’.

For Christians, this phrase has a very special or different meaning. If someone claims inside our church that I’m lost, it immediately causes our attention to perk. For a person to be lost to a believer means simply that they have not been saved. That they do not know a particular person, Jesus Christ.

In today’s passage, Jesus describes Himself as being the way to get to the place that He goes to prepare for each of us. Thomas, his disciple, declared that he did not know the way that the Lord was describing. He did not know how to get to God’s house.

Jesus exclaimed, “I am the way”.  Even as believers, we often make the same mistake as Thomas. We become confused in the direction of where we should go and what path we  should take to follow Christ.

Jesus made it very clear to know the path is simply to know Him.

Today, relax and feel great joy that you know the way. You know Jesus Christ.

Have a blessed day.

~Dean Burnetti

What Is Dragging Behind You?

Philippians 3:13-14 – “No, dear brothers and sisters, I have not achieved it, but I focus on this one thing: Forgetting the past and looking forward to what lies ahead, I press on to reach the end of the race and receive the heavenly prize for which God, through Christ Jesus, is calling us.”

weightsLast night I was watching one of my Kung Fu karate movies. The hero during much of the film was training for a big fight against the arch evil enemy. Not what I would call an original plot line.

One of the conditioning exercises the hero performed was to drag a cart behind him  while his master sat on the cart for added weight. Obviously that was to make his legs stronger and his stamina greater.

Finally, when the hero arrived at the karate match, there was no weights that he carried. He had left them behind.

Scripture tells us that just like the hero dropping his weights as he enters the match, as believers, we are to, at some point, put down the weights. Our weights are the past that can hold us back.

Why?  Because carrying those weights will prevent us from performing at our maximum during the race that is before us. Although there may be some benefit to reflect on the past so that we can learn, there is a point to shake off those weights. To not do so will hold us from being effective in the race before us. Past thoughts of regret or failure are weights that can damage your spirit and mind.

Today, thank God for His forgiveness. In Christ Jesus, you have the right to set aside those weights that hold you back.

Run light.

Have a blessed day.

~Dean Burnetti

Strawberries, Hold The Shortcake

Galatians 5:22-23 – “But the fruit the Holy Spirit produces is love, joy and peace. It is being patient, kind and good. It is being faithful and gentle and having control of oneself. There is no law against things of that kind.”


I’m trying to decide on a diet. I’ve started to notice my suit pants getting a little too tight. I could just have the tailor let the waist bands out a little, but losing ten pounds would be a more intelligent option.

I’ve decided on the Atkins low carb choice. But alas, I love my fruit!

Just last week was the Strawberry Festival in Plant City.  I’ve already made plans for Saturday to journey to Parksdale’s for strawberry shortcake and maybe a strawberry shake to bring home for Sunday. So I am already postponing my diet to start after the weekend is over. I can’t imagine a life without fruit in it.

As a believer, you and I are fruit producers. At least we should be. The Holy Spirit bears, through each of us, the fruit of love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, and goodness.

Today, take time to examine your fruit. Is it with all the characteristics of sweetness that the Bible describes?

If your fruit is failing, know that  in a moment you can fix that problem. Seek the presence of the Holy Spirit. God will not fail. It is never too late to embark on a journey of a Spirit-filled life.

Even now, your life can become so sweet.

Have a blessed day.

~Dean Burnetti

To See the Light

John 1:9 – “The true light that gives light to every man was coming into the world.”

Saturday, I made my usual trip to Lowe’s. It doesn’t happen every weekend, but I had a list by Saturday of all the things I needed to accomplish my chore assignments. (And, yes, I like to examine all the latest power tools when I’m there.)

This Saturday, I had at least one very specific thing I needed to buy, and that was light bulbs. I was amazed that all the incandescent light bulbs were almost gone. Everything’s been now replaced with LED light bulbs. The good part is the LED bulbs are brighter and they supposedly last a lot longer. The bad part is there are a whole lot more expensive.

lightFor whatever reason, Patti and I started talking about what it must have been like a 100 years ago to live in Central Florida. Between the lack of any lighting and the numerous mosquitoes, it must have been absolutely terrible. Much less to say what it was like to not have air conditioning.

I can’t imagine what it would’ve be like to read a book at 9 o’clock at night. Personally, I’m not keen on reading by candlelight or lantern.

For us as modern day believers, we clearly take for granted the luxury that we have in a simple light. In ancient cultures, lighting was precious. The oil that was used to power a simple lantern could be very expensive. Even more expensive than an LED light bulb is today by comparison.

So, when we see that Christ describes Himself as the light that is freely given to each of us, it goes well to illustrate the value of the gift that He provides. Before Christ, there was no light. But through Christ, we all are offered a light that is free for the taking.

Our light will guide us through the darkest of days. For Christ is the Light.

Have a blessed day.

~Dean Burnetti

Garage Sale

Colossians 3:8 – “But now here are the kinds of things you must get rid of. You must put away anger, rage, hate and lies. Let no dirty words come out of your mouths.”

Last weekend was a typical Saturday morning for me. I had plenty of chores to do around the house with a few errands to run. Immediately upon leaving my driveway, I was nearly run over by at least two different vehicles. All before I even was able to drive out of my subdivision!

garage-saleIt’s obvious who those wild drivers are as they intensely scour up and down the neighborhood streets in our neighborhood. They are garage sale hunters. Some of them are really into the art of working the sales. For some, it is actually a way to supplement their income. Buying and selling things at garage sales.

It’s just that sometimes, I get angry with their failure to see me on my bike or in my car.
Saturday was no different. That garage sale driver gave me the emotional charge that causes you to catch your breath and feel your heart come up in your throat. That impending fear that occurs when someone is going to run you over.

It was an old pickup drifting down our neighborhood street head on toward me.  I actually said a few words. (Very loudly with my windows rolled up.)  I was proud of myself that I didn’t curse or use God’s name in vain. But I was angry.

For many of us, we need to consider not only what we say but also how we say it. Our control of delivery is just as important as the content.

In life, people will cut you off and ungraciously cross your path.  But Christ tells us we must get rid of anger, rage, hate, and those things that are best communicated in dirty words. The reason is just simple, because this path destroys our ability to do our job.

Our job is to be ambassadors for Christ and  spread the Good News. You can’t do that, especially to the person you’re chewing out. You can’t do that to all those who are listening to your ranting and raving.

Today, be calm in the calamity of garage sale shoppers in your world. Remember, as a believer, your purpose is greater than he who is in the world.

Have a blessed day.

~Dean Burnetti

Who’s In Control?

Romans 8:4 – “Now we can do everything the law requires. Our sinful nature no longer controls the way we live. The Holy Spirit now controls the way we live.”

In our culture, we’ve become accustomed to believe that control breeds confidence. Of course, successful people are always in control of their destiny.


We are blessed with the privilege to drive a car, carry a weapon, and vote for our leaders. All of these rights and privileges can create a sense of control and security for us.

As believers, we are free to live because of the sacrifice that Christ paid for us. But at the same time, we give that precious gift of control back to Christ. We do so because He first loved us. We do so because we know that our freedom was bought with a precious price.

As believers, we can only live truly free when we turn our control over to our savior and live in the Spirit.

Today, live to be free. Be free to live. Walk in the control of the spirit.

Have a blessed weekend.

~Dean Burnetti