God's Roadmap

Sharing God's roadmap of grace to avoid the pitfalls and potholes of life.

"Let not mercy and truth forsake you; bind them around your neck. Write them on the tablet of your heart" (Proverbs 3:3).

Sunday, August 20, 2017

Good News in the Middle of Bad

by Barbara Latta

Here is some soul food for the coming week to counter all the bad news we hear every day.
A quiet conscience makes one strong.

While tragedy and heartache will always be broadcast and situations will continue to escalate, we can turn our minds to better thoughts by focusing on solutions and letting God give answers to how we should respond. 

Faith is daring of the soul to go
farther than it can see.

 Feel free to download or share the photos. I only ask that you keep my watermark intact. 

Don't be pushed around by the fears in your mind.

Join the conversation and share your favorite quote or scripture verse that helps you get away from bad news. 

Staying positive in a negative world (click to tweet)

Sunday, August 13, 2017

Broken Crayons Still Color

by Barbara Latta

Broken crayons still color.
I love the smell of a new box of crayons. It reminds me of the first day of school when everything is new and clean. The waxy points are sharp and the paper around the small cylinders is still intact.

Then a few weeks later the crayon box is dirty and torn, the colors are broken, the wrappers torn away and the sharp points have worn to a rounded nub.

But you know what I have found out?

Sunday, August 6, 2017

The Persecuted Church or the Pretentious Church?

by Barbara Latta

“We are going to give customers what that want—which is not God.”
Filling pews is more important than the truth.

An article* circulating about Lifesong Church in North Carolina stated that talking about God would cease from the pulpit to prevent alienating people and boost the congregation’s attendance. A pretentious church is more acceptable than a persecuted church.

The pastor told reporters they had to stay true to their mission statement, “Get butts in the seats and keep them there.” He also made comments to compare their church to a business. Filling pews is more important than the truth.

If that’s their mission statement it is no wonder they are willing to stop mentioning God. Why even call yourself a church? Rename the congregation as a motivational group or join a civic group, but stop saying you are a church if you are ashamed to mention the name of the one you claim to follow. If this were my church, I would be better off staying at home on Sunday morning and leaving that seat empty instead of filling it with my body so the attendance roll could check me off.

Sunday, July 30, 2017

Guidance with God or Decisions with Disaster?

By Barbara Latta

Any Decision Can Turn Disastrous Without God’s Direction

I ran away from home when I was seven.

Not literally, but at the time my mother must have thought her child had deserted the family.
Any decision can turn disastrous without
God's direction.
In the 1960’s kids walked to school or rode bicycles if the distance didn’t necessitate boarding the school bus. On the way home one day, one of my friends invited me to go to her house with her so I made the detour. Arriving at her home, the family piled in the car and drove to the country to see her grandmother. We had fun feeding the chickens and playing for a while and then it was time to go back home.

They dropped me off at my house where I was greeted with a wooden paddle that had originally housed a rubber ball on a string, but that day served a different purpose.

My seven-year-old mind didn’t think about calling my mother to tell her where I was. I just thought she would somehow know so I went my own way and did my own thing and suffered the consequences.

Sunday, July 23, 2017

Stand in the Face of Adversity

by Barbara Latta

"No weapon formed against you shall prosper, and every tongue that rises against you in judgment you shall condemn. This is the heritage of the servants of the Lord, and their righteousness is from Me, says the Lord" (Isaiah 54:17 NKJV).

When we are faced with adversity, temptation or failing emotions we can stand on this promise from our Father. He says we shall condemn the lying tongue that comes to our minds to bring depression, guilt and hopelessness to us. With His Word in our hearts and coming out of our mouths, nothing coming against us can prevail.

The accuser is Satan and the lying tongue comes from him. James 4:7 (NKJV) says, "Therefore submit to God. Resist the devil and he will flee from you."

We resist the enemy by not believing the thoughts he puts into our minds. 

No weapon formed against you shall prosper. 
Take these words with you everywhere you go this week and stand victorious in the face of adversity.
Share your favorite scripture for defeating the enemy.

No weapon formed against you shall prosper (click to tweet)

Sunday, July 16, 2017

Fulfilling the Great Commission

by Barbara Latta

Lessons on hitting the mark in life through archery.
A mission trip to the northern part of Tennessee called us to go. Our church, The Church of Joy, partnered with New Salem Baptist Church and the call of Jesus to feed the hungry, clothe the poor and preach the gospel to every creature was answered by a group of Georgia disciples.

Sunday morning worship included a message about reaching out to those around us. Giving money is necessary for missions, but going out to do the work changes more than the lives of those we minister to. It changes us, as well.

In Acts 20:35, Paul was quoting Jesus when he said it is more blessed to give than to receive and this week we experienced that blessing. Watching children of all ages gather to play games, listen to Bible lessons and feed their tummies with snacks and lunch made our hearts swell with compassion. Ministering at the Scott County Christian Care Center dug the wants of hurting people into our souls as we gave food to hungry families.

Seeing the needs first-hand grabs your heart and connects to the call Jesus gave. He commissioned His followers to go into Jerusalem, Judea, Samaria and the uttermost parts of the earth (Acts 1:8). That means we start where we live and the love of Christ goes wherever we go. We walk in His footsteps and become His hands and His voice.
Scott County Christian Care Center volunteers.

We had to leave after a few days but the needs will still be there. Visions of the wondering eyes of the boys and girls who came to Kid’s Camp and the lonely faces of people who came to the care center don’t leave after we come home.

When we experience such vast lack we can become overwhelmed and feel as if we haven’t done enough. We say good-bye to those we came to love and the question, “What can I do now?” burns within our minds. But Jesus said if we give a cup of cold water in His name we have ministered His love (Matthew 10:42).

Now that we are home we can continue the mission by:
  • Meeting the needs of those around us (our Jerusalem).
  • Praying for those we left behind that the seeds we planted will be harvested (our Judea).
  • Supporting the ministry of the Christian Care Center financially and in prayer (our Samaria).
  • Support ministries that go around the world through giving and prayer. If the opportunity arises, we can go to these regions, as well  (The uttermost parts of the earth).

Feeding hungry kids with food and God's Word.
Our work for the kingdom will not end as long as we are on this earth. Until Jesus returns, we are to be about our Father’s business (Luke 19:13).

Share your thoughts and experiences with reaching out to those in need.


Sunday, July 9, 2017

Flipping the Switch on the Darkness of Condemnation

 by Barbara Latta

Darkness is the catalyst that propels us toward light.

Several years ago my husband and I toured some caverns in the state of Virginia. The
Without light nothing can be seen.
stalactites and stalagmites were impressive and the constant dripping of water told the story of how these rock columns were formed. When all the tourists were in place, the park ranger told everyone to be perfectly still. He turned out the light and the darkness that pervaded the space was as thick as a solid brick wall. Nothing could be seen, not even my hand one inch from my face. 

The thought shot through my mind that without light we couldn’t get out of this hole in the ground. After a few seconds of total darkness panic had almost set in. Soon the guide clicked on multi-colored lights that had been strategically placed inside the cave and the moist cavern walls reflected the light like a rainbow. Sighs of relief were heard through the group as the lights came on. This darkness had been physically felt.