Be Honest: Give Credit Where It’s Truly Due


English: Kevin Durant of the Oklahoma City Thu...
English: Kevin Durant of the Oklahoma City Thunders at ARCO Arena. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Here at Conqueror Ministries we love sports.  Athletes depict the Conqueror Lifestyle so brilliantly.  Last nights game between the Oklahoma City Thunder and Miami was no exception.  At the top of the game the commentating  focused on prior dialogue between Dwyane Wade and Kevin Durant.

 The emphasis was on D.Wade’s wrist bands titled “note to self(see them here)”  about comments KD made about replacing Wade in the top 10 list with James Harden. KD’s palpable drive to overcome his  2nd place status to the Heat in the finals and the MVP award to LeBron James.  The reference inferred KD’s inferiority to the Heat.  My attention to the game’s outcome heightened when, during the pregame interview with KD, he referenced Proverbs 27:17 “irons sharpen iron” as a way of spiritually demonstrating his appreciation for the heightened camaraderie between the Heat players and he.  We applaud Kevin Durant’s response. People can motivate people to rely on God’s sovereignty.

 Proverbs 27:17 (NASB) Iron sharpens iron,So one man sharpens another.


The game did not disappoint.
 The Thunder experienced a 20+ point deficit in the first quarter before taking their place as leading scorers.  The fact that the Thunder faced the stellar starting five – Wade, Chalmers, Bosh, Battier and James,- who were responsible for the championship win in 2012, made it seem that once again Miami was not going to lose an important game at home. Why was this game important to the Heat? Simple. They all have egos that demand a win against the #1 Western Conference team to supersede  their #2 Eastern Conference standing. It is obvious that the team is without their other star player, Russell Westbrook.  Therefore, the Thunder’s vulnerability to the Heat’s starting lineup  was a prime opportunity to establish momentum in their efforts to move to #1 in their conference.  However, the Heat failed miserably.

I am certain that the 2 stars Westbrook and Durant are sharpening other iron on their own team as well because the sudden rise of Reggie Jackson and Jeremy Lamb, both sharp as tacks on offense and defense. And the veteran Derek Fisher just seemed  unstoppable in his 3 point shooting.  Ibaka and Sefolosha were both defensive dynamos as the Heat struggled in a cycle of turnovers that was ongoing throughout the second half.  As the Thunder’s went on to win it 112-95, Kevin Durant emerged once again as the star scorer with over 30 points. His leadership qualities as a  Conqueror made the post interview with Doris Burke a stellar MTAC moment.  When she asked Kevin “what goes into a streak of winning like you have had over the last 12 games,(see it here)” Kevin’s response was humbly “God – Jesus Christ.”  Doris was waiting for Kevin to take the credit for his athleticism and the victorious outcome and Kevin’s motivation  to BE HONEST AND GIVE JESUS CHRIST THE CREDIT HE DESERVES shut out any opportunity for vain egotism to prevail.  

Christians and MTAC’s worldwide watching this post interview should appreciate this opportunity to see the Conqueror Lifestyle in action publicly last night. If you missed it, check out the link above.  Kevin Durant gave us our Conqueror Shot for the day.

 Your honesty with yourself about your need for your Savior, Jesus Christ, should always be on display.

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When A Celebrity Is Conquered: Justin Bieber’s Self-Destruction


The celebrity lifestyle includes destructive behaviors.  It alarms us all when we hear of a celebrity who has been pronounced dead after a short lived life fueled with the excesses of drugs, alcohol, sex and the phenomenon of “more” naturally.  There are many people who are in position throughout the music, film, television, comedy and sports entertainment industries, all of whom are there strictly to provide the celebrity with “more” destructive devices.  These “yes people” provide the means for more opportunities to spin out of control and ultimately follow in the footsteps of legendary performers like Billy Holiday, Elvis Presley, Janis Joplin, Jimi Hendrix, Len Bias, Michael Carl Blaze, Marilyn Monroe, Judy Garland, Chris Farley, John Belushi and countless others both well known and unknown.  Celebrities are so much more prone to the excesses to offset the absolute nature of insanity induced by a life absorbed in the abuse of alcohol and drugs. When will we – as a regenerated people – stand for what is right and oppose such tragedies?

Today is a day when such a stand is possible. Justin Bieber is not alone in his quest to “have a good time.” No! However, because of his recent arrest at 4am in Miami, Florida after allegedly being under the influence of drugs and alcohol and operating a Lamborghini in a drag racing scenario, his actions are enough to initiate all of the help opportunities we can as Christians.  Christians are in no way perfect. Yes, my book “A Conqueror In Training” intimately portrays the level of imperfection we experience in our Christian walk. But what we are not, when we are living the Conqueror Lifestyle, is “conquered by sin.”  Justin’s behavior and his recent arrest are all examples of how he is in the grips of the origins of being overtaken by drugs and alcohol. People who are conquered by sin manifest this spiritual condition through the excesses of drugs, alcohol, sex and music. The history of the entertainment business, including the sports world, is such that we as Americans know how prevalent these behaviors are and yet they continue on year after year. Dr. Drew has even taken the syndrome to the television medium to publicly portray all of the negative proclivities by which human beings can realize their affinity to self destruct. Justin is conquered by sin. One of the ways being conquered by sin becomes possible is when various worldly tactics are employed exposing the innocent to their natural phenomenon of “more” – no matter how talented or smart one may be.

The Conqueror Lifestyle will safeguard you from self destruction
The Conqueror Lifestyle will safeguard you from self destruction

 

The problem is this: talent is a human condition that is used as a form of capitalization. Capitalism promotes wealth. Wealth promotes the love of money. “The love of money is the root of all evil.”  Evil is released into the lives of these unsuspecting, innocent, unsupervised youth and early adults as they travel up the “ladder of success” at a diabolical rate of speed and velocity. Ultimately they are consumed by the distractions of the world and all its vices and become overwhelmed with the cares of life. The downward spiral ensues and there is no where else to end up – with all the riches, fame, notoriety and increased opportunities to be of service to others – but 6 feet under.

How devastated were you when you heard of the death of Michael Jackson? Justin Bieber is on the same path. The Conqueror Lifestyle is available to you Justin to help you realize all that God designed you to be if you would by faith try this way of life. This lifestyle promotes experiencing the phenomenon of “more” spiritually.  However, if anyone else is interested in helping Justin, or anyone else, by getting help through what we do here at Conqueror Ministries we will do all we can to be of service to you to help anyone develop and maintain the Conqueror Lifestyle. It is an antidote to a life conquered by sin.

 

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“Pray 1st”


Psalm 121:1 A Song of degrees. I will lift up mine eyes unto the hills, from whence cometh my help. 
Ps 121:2 My help cometh from the LORD, which made heaven and earth. 
Ps 121:3 He will not suffer thy foot to be moved: he that keepeth thee will not slumber. 
Ps 121:4 Behold, he that keepeth Israel shall neither slumber nor sleep. 
Ps 121:5 The LORD is thy keeper: the LORD is thy shade upon thy right hand. 
Ps 121:6 The sun shall not smite thee by day, nor the moon by night. 
Ps 121:7 The LORD shall preserve thee from all evil: he shall preserve thy soul. 
Ps 121:8 The LORD shall preserve thy going out and thy coming in from this time forth, and even for evermore.

My awakening was greeted with the severest of pain. I have learned to live with it from day to day. Yet this morning, like so many others, it began with the horror of stillness summoning the acuity of my spirit.  The stabbing, burning suffering in my flesh upon awakening is more consistent in the last year. There is literally nothing immediate about the relief process naturally.  It can happen at the most inconvenient moments and with no apparent reason.

Hopefully, you will read my new book, “A Conqueror In Training” over the holiday season and discover how I came to realize the “Conqueror Lifestyle.”  In fact, I pray you will want your friends and loved ones to have the blessed experience of reading it as well through your gift giving via ebooks. When you have read it, the message of this post will resonate in your spirits more brightly.  His training has effectively taught me to “pray 1st.”  Today, and everyday I start out in prayer 1st helps me to continue to stay in the race and run on some more.  Doing this has proven His Sovereignty over my life from situation to situation, experience to experience, outcome after outcome ultimately revealing that “Prayer Changes Things.

Billie Holiday penned the song “Good Morning Heartache” while wrestling with her reality of pain and heartache experienced every morning when she needed another “fix.”  Her addiction to heroin was breaking her spiritually as her body required the drug more and more. Over time it destroyed her talent and took her life in death far too young.

English: Billie Holiday, Downbeat, New York.
English: Billie Holiday, Downbeat, New York. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

The imagery contained in this powerful recording demonstrates a heart overcome with brokenness and unwilling to “pray without ceasing.” I Thess. 5:17.  When you are caught up in your flesh and your spirit is conquered by sin, you will do everything humanly possible to discover change which can only come through the saving grace of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.

Pain is painful.  God allows pain for the purpose of perfecting His will in us. A personal identity to Jesus’ suffering on the Cross is where this truth begins. Thanks be unto God for  the mighty power of His Spirit at work which manifests and maintains the Conqueror Lifestyle in me from day to day. You too can come to know the Conqueror Lifestyle God has just for you. When you pray 1st, you call His power into the situation immediately.  Humanity ceases and Divinity commences in spiritually defining ways to demonstrate His power in us.   And He will do, what no other power, can do.

Stay in the race!

Darrin

 

Let Him Lead You


"Lead Me, Guide Me" by Doris Atkers
Verse 1 
I am weak and I need Thy strength and power,                                        
To help me over my weakest hour. 
Let me through the darkness Thy face to see, 
Lead me, oh Lord lead me. 
Chorus 
Lead me, guide me along the way, 
For if you lead me I cannot stray. 
Lord, let me walk each day with Thee. 
Lead me, oh Lord lead me. 
Verse 2
Help me tread in the paths of righteousness.
Be my aid when Satan and sin oppress. 
I am putting all my trust in Thee: 
Lead me, oh Lord lead me. 
Verse 3 
I am lost if you take your hand from me, 
I am blind without Thy light to see.
Lord just always let me thy servant be,
Lead me, oh Lord lead me.

“Where Your Feet Are IS Where You Are”

Solid as a rock
Solid as a rock (Photo credit: Joybot)

     For years I struggled with the TRUTH in the slogan above.  Furthermore, for decades I maintained enormous opposition against the idea of “God‘s leading” over my life. As I look back over my life I can now see that all of my struggling with the prospect of surrendering to God’s will for my life was due to me wanting to be in control, my ego leading me in the fulfillment of the desires of my flesh and my human affinity towards being a product of this world rather than a servant of the God who created me. I could not “Be still and KNOW THAT GOD IS GOD” and appreciate all of the goodness that He brings into my life through His Sovereignty over my life. The best I could do was to continue spinning my wheels of human potential landing in life situations where I ultimately got stuck in ditches that got deeper and deeper over time. I could not appreciate the joy in the journey because I was always frustrated with one aspect (or another) of my life’s reality where I kept coming up short. 

     Along the way to the point of realizing God’s mission for my life, I came to appreciate all of the hardships, pain and suffering, grief, loss, guilt, shame and remorse my life manufactured. Today “I do not regret the past nor do I wish to shut the door on it.” Like Iyanla, “I did my work.” The evidence of the task is soon to be realized publicly with the release of the books. Today I can be grateful for where my feet are because my heart and mind are humbled under the “mighty hand of God.” There is a consistent awareness of God’s presence that sustains me. The reason for the presence of peace, love, joy, thanksgiving, faith and hope that wakes me up every day and preserves me throughout most of my days is because GOD IS LEADING ME. The essence of His leadership in and over my life is realized in the Conqueror Lifestyle that He prepared just for me. 

God has a Conqueror Lifestyle prepared just for you as well. To find out more about the Conqueror Lifestyle follow me on twitter @ConquerorShots.

 Darrin D. Payne

 

 

 

A Conquering Response to a Trending Lack of Love


A response to this article http://www.americapreachers.com/speak-out/pastor-says-no-to-women-wearing-weaves-in-church/
A response to this article
http://www.americapreachers.com/speak-out/pastor-says-no-to-women-wearing-weaves-in-church/ [contact-form][contact-field label='Name' type='name' required='1'/][contact-field label='Email' type='email' required='1'/][contact-field label='Website' type='url'/][contact-field label='Comment' type='textarea' required='1'/][/contact-form]

What’s Going ON?


Boston, MA
Boston, MA (Photo credit: JasonParis) AT WHAT PRICE?

Marvin Gaye penned the lyrics to this song title during a time of social unrest in this country as the 70’s began. I was a little boy learning life  in a community where everyone knew everybody and everything about everybody. Never did we imagine a tragic moment where gunmen would heartlessly spill gunfire into a school classroom as children are learning. Yet today this is our reality. The question still resonates today but the need for a Savior resonates all the more.

It is shameful to see how our country is continuing to realize the devastating results of the legitimacy associated with the rights to bear arms. Everyone knows the dangers we face – adults and children alike – in this nation because of the loose regulations regarding gun control.  The fact that we as a nation continue to mourn the loss of life secondary to gun violence in public establishments screams out for immediate attention of law makers and enforcers to raise up and initiate protective measures for us all.

In the meantime these lyrics are a source of comfort as the tragedy pierces our hearts:

In times like these you need a Savior
In times like these you need an anchor;
Be very sure, be very sure
Your anchor holds and grips the Solid Rock!
In times like these you need the Bible,
In times like these O be not idle;
Be very sure, be very sure
Your anchor holds and grips the Solid Rock!
In times like these I have a Savior,
In times like these I have an anchor;
I'm very sure, I'm very sure
My anchor holds and grips the Solid Rock!
Chorus
This Rock is Jesus, Yes, He's the One;
This Rock is Jesus, the only One!
Be very sure, be very sure
Your anchor holds and grips the Solid Rock! 
Ruth C. Jones