Your Biography

2 Corinthians 3:3 “Clearly, you are a letter from Christ…. This ‘letter’ is written not with pen and ink, but with the Spirit of the living God. It is carved not on tablets of stone, but on human hearts.”

I was recently in an antique shop. I was cruising through the various items in the glass case when I saw a wrist watch. The back of that wrist watch was monogrammed with a person’s name. Obviously, I wasn’t terribly surprised, but it did make me stop and ponder, Who was this person?  It kind of left me with a sense of emptiness. You wonder, Is this all that is left of the person who wore this watch?

For many of us, we are left with a sense of emptiness when we look back over our lifetime and wonder, What is there to remember me by? What is there that tells others that come after me what my life was about?  I guess, for the rich and famous, that is why they often write autobiographies so they can create some written evidence of what their life was. 

For us, as Believers, the Scripture tells us that we all have biographies. They are biographies written not with pens and ink on or in books but by the Holy Spirit on human hearts. These are not just written by your experiences but are authored by the Holy Spirit.  We, as Believers, have the ultimate Facebook that provides a story of who we are, shared on the hearts of others. 

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 Today, do not despair, wondering if there is some evidence of your walk with Christ. There is. The Holy Spirit writes on the hearts of all those who you touch on your journey with Christ. This is your real book. Your story will impact you and others with Christ.

Stay healthy and have a blessed week!

~Dean Burnetti  

A Chance to Grow

James 1:2‭-‬4 – “Dear brothers and sisters, when troubles of any kind come your way, consider it an opportunity for great joy. For you know that when your faith is tested, your endurance has a chance to grow. So let it grow, for when your endurance is fully developed, you will be perfect and complete, needing nothing.”

Over the weekend, I took on the simple project of repairing my extension cord. One of the plug ends was broken. I took off to Home Depot to pick up a plug. I had done this job several times in the past. When I got to the store, I made my way to the electrical aisle and quickly picked out a replacement plug.

Once I was home, I quickly cut off the bad plug end, skinned off the wire ends, and attached the wires to the appropriate posts. Voila! I was done.

Later that day, my wife asked me to bring her my newly repaired extension cord. She needed to use the shop vac to clean up one of my other do-it-yourself projects. I plugged in one of the cord ends. I quickly grabbed the plug end of the vacuum cleaner and the other end of the extension cord to complete my task. It was then that I realized that I had replaced the wrong plug end! I didn’t use a female plug but rather just another male replacement plug.

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 I cannot tell you how foolish I felt. I held them both up to show them to my wife.  As a young man, I might have cursed; however this time, I simply laughed. I realized at that moment that no matter how long I live, I will always make mistakes. Obviously, some of them will hopefully only be minor; but at the same time, I must accept that some of them will be significant. The question isn’t how you will make sure you don’t make mistakes but rather how you will respond. That’s why I love today’s passage so much.

Even in trouble or mistakes, we are told to receive it all with joy. Today, realize that you will make mistakes almost every day. How you respond in the presence of God, though, will make all the difference. One thing is for sure, the world around you will be watching. If you respond in the joy of Christ rather than in the anger of life, you will make the difference that will change the world around you. 

Today, live and grow in the joy of Christ and remember to laugh.

Stay healthy and have a blessed week!

~Dean Burnetti  

Mind Control

Romans 8:6 – “So letting your sinful nature control your mind leads to death. But letting the Spirit control your mind leads to life and peace.”

Hypnotism is often thought to be some form of mind control.  Many movies have been made illustrating everyone from Count Dracula to Alien life forms utilizing some form of mind control or hypnotism.

If you perform an internet search, you may be surprised that in almost any town of significant population, you will find a hypnotherapist. They offer help with everything from smoking to weight loss to life coaching.

As a new young attorney, I was quite interested in hypnosis as a way to keep my anxiety in check.  I am convinced that it was of great help to me.  The one thing I remember from that experience was that it took repetition, concentration, and a purposeful effort to work.

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God tells us that if we will let the Holy Spirit control our minds, it will lead to life and peace. That sounds awesome.

So how do we do this?

It takes repetition. You can’t just ask the Spirit to control your mind on Monday and think that will carry through Sunday. It’s a daily surrender.

It takes concentration. Your attention must be on God’s Spirit to hear God’s voice. Your surrender to the Spirit’s control needs your awareness, an open line of communication,
and, yes, God’s promise for those who allow His Spirit’s control is peace and life… Not just any life, but the best life ever… Eternal life!  

Stay healthy and have a blessed weekend!

~Dean Burnetti  

Even When Your Friends Don’t Cheer

Matthew 26:50‭, ‬56 – “Jesus said, ‘My friend, go ahead and do what you have come for.” Then the others grabbed Jesus and arrested him. But this is all happening to fulfill the words of the prophets as recorded in the Scriptures.’ At that point, all the disciples deserted him and fled.”

Our journey with Christ is described by the Apostle Paul as running a race. When I think of a race, I picture fans and friends on the side of my path, cheering me on, especially as I near the finish line. I can’t imagine approaching a view of the finish line only to have my friends simply walk away before I cross it.

It’s exciting and motivating to participate in a race when the crowd is cheering. But imagine if your cheering and support were to end.  I think I would start to wonder if I had done something wrong.

Maybe I had left the course. Possibly I shouldn’t be running.  Maybe I should abandon the race.

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As a Believer, once we hear God’s voice and know His will, we cannot let our course change, no matter what family and friends’ opinions may be.

Our determination to keep on running cannot be dependent on the opinions or emotional support of others. Our sustaining strength comes from the Lord.

Today, be strong and stay the course. God has plans for you.

Stay healthy and have a blessed day!

~Dean Burnetti  

Just Like Honey

Proverbs 16:24 – “Kind words are like honey— sweet to the soul and healthy for the body.”

As Believers, it’s important that we understand the power of our words. The Bible repeatedly talks about our tongue and controlling it.

As a Christian, you may find yourself with all the right words when you are at church. But in the workplace, social life, and family, we often don’t carry on the consistency that we display at the church. As a result, so often we can be viewed as hypocrites by others.

The point is that our words can be one of our greatest tools for success — or destruction — in our walk with Christ. They are seeds that you plant in other people. They do not come back without some form of harvest for the good — or for the bad.

The Bible describes kind words as being honey that is sweet. Healthy for the body. Kind words of encouragement that you share with everyone around you, whether it be in your family, your work, or your social life, will actually increase the physical health of others around you. We know that it increases their emotional health, but I believe the Bible is true when it says it has a positive impact on their physical health.

As Believers, the words that come from our mouths affect the emotional, spiritual, and physical health of our children, our spouses, and our families.

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Do you want to increase the physical health of your children?  Speak kind words. Do you want to increase the health of your spouse?  Speak kind words of encouragement. Do you want to positively increase your own personal physical health?  Speak kind words of encouragement to yourself.

The great American novelist, Henry James, in saying good-bye to his nephew, Willie, said something the boy never forgot. As they parted, he put his hand on the young man’s shoulders and remarked, “Willie, there are three things that are important in human life. The first is to be kind. The second is to be kind. The third is to be kind.”

God has a kind word for you today:  He loves you.

Stay healthy and have a blessed day! 

~Dean Burnetti  

Never Stop Praying

1 Thessalonians 5:17 – “Never Stop Praying.”

One of my most difficult things to do during a busy day is to keep that line of communication open with Christ. It’s so easy to get caught up in the business of the day.

Even as I’m writing this devotion, my phone is ringing from people who want to talk to me. It should make me feel good that I’m so wanted or needed by others. But at the same time, it oftentimes distracts me from listening to the most important person in my day: Jesus Christ.

For the Holy Spirit to guide, there must be an open communication. Not only from Him to me, but also from me to Him. That line of communication needs to be open all day long.

Never stop praying. Simply meaning to never stop talking to God. In so doing, your attention to His voice is always open.

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Today, keep that communication open. Talk to Him — and listen. He will speak to you.
See as your day is transformed to all you could ever hope for. To be a Disciple of Christ.

Stay healthy and have a blessed day! 

~Dean Burnetti  

Wait and Listen

Psalms 85:8 –  “I will listen to you, Lord God, because you promise peace to those who are faithful and no longer foolish.”

Being patient while we wait on God to direct our path is oftentimes, for me, one of the most difficult places to be. When the world around observes us waiting to hear from God, it is often seen as failure.

The world sees us as procrastinating in failing to make decisive and strong decisions in a quick and timely fashion. But for us as believers, waiting on God to direct our path is the most blessed place to be. It tests our faith. It strengthens our soul. It ultimately prepares the stage of receiving God’s blessings.

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Today, you are now or will be soon approaching decisions that need to be made about your future. It’s good to reason things  in logic and knowledge, but ultimately look to God to direct your path. This will require patience. But it will strengthen your soul.

Wait and listen. He will speak to you.

Stay healthy and have a blessed week! 

~Dean Burnetti  

Endless Power to Share

Romans 8:2 – “And because you belong to him, the power of the life-giving Spirit has freed you from the power of sin that leads to death.”

Last night we had dinner with dear friends in Mexico. Their youngest daughter was a toddler when I last saw her. She has since changed into a speaking star. There was no part of the evening that she did not control the dialogue. And I mean in control.

I must say, at first, it was hard to get a word edgewise. But after a short time, I was engaged.
She had a story for every moment. She started by offering stickers, one chair at a time. After you had her sticker placed on your hand or face, she would engage you into a story of the significance of your stickers powers. Hers could transform you back to your house in an instant. Mine had electrical powers. 

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I was mesmerized in the moment. The only thing that gave us pause was her need to go to bathroom or the need to eat her ice cream. So much energy.

I finally asked her if she wanted to go back to my house for Red Bull and a game of cards. Thank goodness she didn’t understand. Where her energy and power came from, I do not know. But it was endless.

There is no doubt the power of Christ is endless. It is available to each of us as Believers for a purpose: To engage the interests of others for a reason. To show them that we care about them. That we want to share how wonderful it is to follow Christ.

Today, you will cross paths with someone who you can engage in a story. Make sure your story is about how Christ has made a difference in your life. It’s your chance to shine like a star. 

Stay healthy and have a blessed weekend! 

~Dean Burnetti  

Power And Love

2 Timothy 1:7 – “For God has not given us a spirit of fear and timidity, but of power, love, and self-discipline.”

Last night I was watching TV. I saw a newborn giraffe attempting to stand for the first time. It appeared to be so difficult with such long thin legs to rise and stay balanced.

At least three times it would go up and then fall to its knees. You could sense the fear and timidity in the weakness of its moment.  Finally, with encouragement of its mother, the baby giraffe made it’s strongest move and was standing. I almost wanted to leap from my couch and applaud.  In the next scene, the baby giraffe was walking so elegantly. No longer in fear but with grace in each step. 

Baby Giraffes-Zoo Miami

 So often, we, as Believers, are faced with large decisions in our life. They are sometimes life-changing and take us far outside of our comfort zone. They involve commitment, strength and courage.

Today, God may be calling you to a commitment. To a new ministry. To a new career. To start a business. To buy a new home. As Christians, we can find our decision easy to procrastinate as we are wanting to make sure that God is directing our path. 

Today, ground yourself in the Spirit, in love and in power. Do not be afraid to stand up as God has great things in store for you. 

Stay healthy and have a blessed day! 

~Dean Burnetti  

Thank You

Psalm 105:1 – “Give thanks to the Lord. Worship him. Tell the nations what he has done.”

While in Mexico, I have always found the people to be gracious. I know little of the Spanish language. But I have mastered the use of the word thank you in Spanish. Gracias. It is always accompanied with a smile and appreciated reception.

‘Thank you’ is probably one of the most under-rated expressions that impact you and others. It has meaning to the person to whom you give thanks, and it also has a significant effect on you, as well.

For us as believers, giving thanks to the Lord is, in effect, a form of worship. It benefits us in so many ways. 

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 We open our hearts when we give thanks that allows God’s Spirit to minister to us. It encourages us to tell others of our Good News of how God has blessed us.

It is a foundation of how you can share the gospel in your everyday life. So, don’t sell short the power of thank you. It can change your day. 

Stay healthy and have a blessed day! 

~Dean Burnetti