Look Deeper

Proverbs 15:1 – “A gentle answer deflects anger, but harsh words make tempers flare.”

Patti and I like to go to one of my favorite Chinese restaurants. The people that  work there are truly immigrants from another country. They have a different culture, and they respond to people in possibly different ways, even in conversation.

Man Peering through Magnifying Glass - IsolatedI’ve always noticed that they don’t smile at me when I place my order. Some would even consider the way they interact as being rather rude at times. But for some reason, whenever my wife Patti goes to the counter and places her order, she’s able to present herself in a way with a smile.

Her kindness in voice for some reason, will gain a reaction of a like response from them. I actually see them smile at her, yet they never even offer me extra soy or duck sauce. But they always offer it to Patti.

Observing Patti and the way she presents herself has taught me great lessons. Kindness and smiles will always change the reaction of others. Even when they react initially in a not-so-polite way to you.  If you’ll put on that smile and show kindness of speech, it will usually make the difference.

For us as believers, this becomes a very useful tool. It’s hard to witness to someone  until we establish some sense of kindness and care in our communication. In your day to day, break out that smile and that kindness of speech. I know that it will open doors so that hopefully you can tell others about Jesus, even today.

Have a blessed weekend!

~Dean Burnetti

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What’s In Your Garden?

James 1:21 – “So get rid of all the filth and evil in your lives, and humbly accept the word God has planted in your hearts, for it has the power to save your souls.”

As a young Boy Scout, I took great interest in foraging through the woods.  I loved to study and identify plant life. I’d spend hours, sometimes, in the forest, looking at the different types of trees and plants and identifying them. It was one of my favorite  hobbies.

Despite that interest, when it came time to work on my gardening merit badge, I absolutely struggled. Looking back now, it became pretty obvious what my problems were… I hated to weed and hoe. Sooner or later the weeds would always seem to overcome my garden.  There simply was no substitute for the hard work of going out on my hands and knees pulling out the weeds around my garden plants. It was a weekly and sometimes almost daily discipline that I just couldn’t seem to conquer.

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At the end of the gardening season, my harvest wasn’t so great. I ultimately got the gardening merit badge, but I often wondered if I really deserved it.

For us as believers, the idea of weeds growing in our garden is inevitable. Those weeds for us as believers are quite comparable to the evil and bad things that arise in our lives. They may be habits or they may be a failure to create habits, but they all have the effect of weeds that have a tendency to choke out the productivity of what we’re trying to accomplish in our garden.

Today, take some time and look at your garden. Be honest and take a hard look at what weeds are growing. They may be bad habits or just bad conduct. There is no discipline other than to get on your hands and knees and pull those weeds out.

Change your conduct, change your actions, and make the healthy of word of God that is planted in your heart. It will produce fruit of a heavenly character.

Have a blessed day!

~Dean Burnetti

Set Your Sights

Colossians 3:1-3 “Since you have been raised to new life with Christ, set your sights on the realities of heaven, where Christ sits in the place of honor at God’s right hand. Think about the things of heaven, not the things of earth. For you died to this life, and your real life is hidden with Christ in God.”

I remember my fifth grade teacher, Mr. Blakely. A great teacher and a  righteous follower of Christ.

Mr. Blakely had a way of lecturing the class, and just when your mind was drifting to other things outside the classroom, he’d snap you back to attention. How?

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That was his talent. He possessed a myriad of methods. Everything from dropping books, scraping the chalk board, turning on and off the classroom lights, and even calling out your name.

It’s not easy to keep your attention on the things of Heaven when you live, breathe, and walk on the Earth.  Today, pair up with a friend and make a deal to hold each other accountable.

If nothing else, be the  reminder about attention to the realities of heaven. It may just simply be a word about prayer or maybe something God did for you today. Regardless, it will cause you to focus on the things of heaven.

Have a blessed day!

~Dean Burnetti

What Fruit is Hanging On You?

Galatians 5:22-23 “But the Holy Spirit produces this kind of fruit in our lives: love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control.”

fruitI’ve never met a Christian who, when asked the question of whether they want to be filled with the power of the Holy Spirit, ever responded, “No way.”

Christ sent the Holy Spirit for us. He is our Comforter.  But how do you know that you are filled, led, guided, or controlled by the Holy Spirit?

After you became a believer, you looked for a change. I mean, you were just born again. You read about the New Testament Christians being filled with the Spirit who then experienced amazing things in their lives.

You may then say, “What about me? I asked for the Spirit to fill me on many occasions. But I don’t see it.  I haven’t healed anyone lately. I don’t speak in other tongues.
So, am I with the Spirit or not?”

Scripture tells us to look for certain fruit. Love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control.

The power of the Spirit may or may not provide you a particular gift.  The power of the Spirit will always create fruit in you: Love, Joy, Peace, Patience, Kindness, Goodness, Faithfulness, Gentleness, and Self Control.

Today, rejoice in the confidence that Christ promised you as a believer the presence of the Holy Spirit. Today, submit to communication and following the Holy Spirit.
If you will, great things will follow. Guaranteed, fruit will hang on you.

Enjoy your walk.

Have a blessed day!

~Dean Burnetti

None Other

2 Samuel 7:22 – “How great you are, O Sovereign Lord ! There is no one like you. We have never even heard of another God like you!”

jesusI’ve recently been watching a television series hosted by Morgan Freeman about various religions and deities that others around the world worship and believe in.  They all seem sincere in their belief.

So what’s the difference in our belief in Jesus Christ? For me it all comes to one thing:
Jesus came to give Himself as a sacrifice for my sins. To pay a price with His life for me so that I could be born again. To be united to God. To become a being that will live forever in the presence of God.

That is the difference. There is no other God who has paid that price. And that is why I am a child of God. That makes all the  difference.

Have a blessed day!

~Dean Burnetti

Who Fuels Your Heart?

Colossians 3:15  “And let the peace that comes from Christ rule in your hearts. For as members of one body you are called to live in peace. And always be thankful.”

heartfuelWe are a world that relies on fuel. If you don’t believe it, just think about what it was like in Florida during the week after hurricane Irma. For many, there was no electricity, no air conditioning, and for some, no gas for their cars. Yes, we need fuel to function in our culture.

But you need the correct fuel for each engine. During this last hurricane, I made the mistake of grabbing a gas can that had a two cycle mix for my chain saw and poured it into my generator engine. I had to drain that tank. Without the correct fuel, it simply wasn’t going to run correctly.

As believers in Christ, we have a fuel that runs our engine known as the “Peace of God.” By submission of ourselves to Christ, we enable the Spirit to take control or fuel our engine with the very fuel of peace that God intended and made our engine to run on.

Today, you may be wondering why your day is so difficult. It may well be the fuel that controls your engine.  Empty your tank of the bad fuel of your self-control by submitting yourself to Christ’s control.

Yes, give up your control.  Then, and only then, ask the Spirit to fuel you full with the power of peace. It will change every aspect of your day, and your performance.

Praise Him.

Have a blessed day!

~Dean Burnetti

Why Not Answer My Prayer?

Jeremiah 32:17 “O Sovereign Lord ! You made the heavens and earth by your strong hand and powerful arm. Nothing is too hard for you!

There’ve been so many wonderful things that have occurred to me over the last year. God has blessed so many aspects of my life that I’ve journeyed.

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It’s awesome when you see God answer your prayer and direct your path. At the same time, I’ve caught myself during periods when I pray for something and have experienced nothing.

Hey, I’m looking for some affirmation that God is active. That I have His favor. Plus, it’s what I want.

But obviously, it’s not always what God wants. In those instances, there’s a tendency to feel as though God is not answering my prayers. That I am outside of His favor.

During those times, I sometimes wonder if I’ve done something wrong. That God’s eyes are not upon me. Or worse yet, that maybe God is punishing me. It can create a sense of despair.

That’s when I have to check myself. God always answers my prayers. It’s not always the answer I want to hear. But it’s always the one that will lead me to become more like Him. To be conformed to His image.

Today, submit yourself to the journey. God loves you so much that He is willing to to do everything on your journey to develop you into your best.

That’s God’s favor. And, yes, you have it.

Have a blessed day!

~Dean Burnetti