Complacency vs. Contentment. 

If I can differentiate between the two, I can best correlate this to a MMA fighter.

Let me start with the easiest of the two to explain, which is COMPLACENCY.By definition, 

* 1
: self-satisfaction especially when accompanied by unawareness of actual dangers or deficiencies <When it comes to safety, complacency can be dangerous.>

* 2
: an instance of usually unawareor uninformed self-satisfaction

Someone who is “complacent” is basically one who has no interest or motivation to learn more than what they already understand. The inability to make healthy adjustments in one’s fighting style to counter an opponents attacks.

Complacency is paralyzing. It is mostly related to fears and the simple fear of failure. Lack of faith maybe, but definitely a lack of internal or external motivation. 

CONTENTMENT, however by definition is about peace. Possessing peace while you roll with the punches of life.

A MMA fighter’s “peace” is based on his or her’s diversity and the atmosphere they create in any situation.

You can be challenged by various opponents throughout life, but your confidence and peace is not determined by anything external, but internal. 

A heart that is always open to learning and remains hungry and appreciative even if it is just the crumbs from that have fallen from the MMA Master’s table.

It is a way of life vs. a temporary emotion. It is what keeps us satisfied with our faith in God irregardless of what life brings.

It is NOT based on the fact that I will never know it all, but on the fact that there is so much more to learn.  

To be willing to anticipate my fresh daily bread and to be content with it vs. me being complacent with eating yesterday’s week old bread.

To allow things to flow in our life freely vs. things building up and hoarding things in fear of a lack of supply upon life’s demand. 

Furthermore, contentment is based on things internal while complacency is based on things external.

John 7:38 NIV

“Whoever believes in me, as Scripture has said, rivers of living water will flow from within them.”

Philippians 4:11-14 NLT

“11Not that I was ever in need, for I have learned how to be content with whatever I have. 12I know how to live on almost nothing or with everything. I have learned the secret of living in every situation, whether it is with a full stomach or empty, with plenty or little. 13For I can do everything through Christ,c who gives me strength. 14Even so, you have done well to share with me in my present difficulty.”

Hebrews 13:5 NIV

“Keep your lives free from the love of money and be content with what you have, because God has said, “Never will I leave you; never will I forsake you.”

1 Timothy 6:6-7 NIV

“6But godliness with contentment is great gain. 7For we brought nothing into the world, and we can take nothing out of it.”

Luke 12:15 NIV

“Then he said to them, “Watch out! Be on your guard against all kinds of greed; life does not consist in an abundance of possessions.”

Proverbs 16:8 NLT

“Better to have little, with godliness, than to be rich and dishonest.”

Proverbs 28:6 NLT

“Better to be poor and honest than to be dishonest and rich.”

Ecclesiastes 3:13 NIV

“That each of them may eat and drink, and find satisfaction in all their toil–this is the gift of God.”

I then asked our brother Noah who is a MMA Instructor to give me his input on this short note: 

“In full harmony with the talk I gave my students today.

I only wish to elaborate on one common reason people SAY they are content, but it’s obvious they aren’t when they judge. This could be judging success in socializing, finances, or spirituality.

We sometimes misuse the God given desire for stability. When we see someone do something we know we could’ve done, too, we desire to make sense of it.. often with excuse and criticism. It’s seems easier than correcting a false 12-year-old story.

As they say, game recognize game. This means that we recognize in others what we recognize in ourselves. So what stops us from acting? The answer is in one’s actions. When we criticise, it means we fear criticism. “The only reason you care about your failure is because you care what other people think about your failure.” – Gary Vaynerchuck.

Happy people are learning people. We desire new televisions, cars, phones, etc, but when it comes to changing our own person we meet with the fear that if I change something about me, it means I’m deficient. This happens, often, because we “braid” our concepts of identity over treating our knowledge like pillars.

If a support pillar is outdated, I can remove it and rebuild with little trouble. However, if I braided my concepts of identity, it’s a painful mess to unravel the whole thing to remove the weak strand of rope.

A great fighter has a tendency to see his skill sets individually, yet use them as one.

A fighter may tell you their striking may not be as good as there grappling. This doesn’t make them feel weak. If anything, it directs their game plan for where they want the fight to take place, range wise, and what to cultivate in training.

I got on a roll Ray Lol sorry it’s long. Use any/all, and God bless, my brother. 🙏”

-Noah Parkman, Mixed Martial Arts Instructor.

And on that note, on behalf of The Kingdom of God, brother Noah and myself,  I close with an Amen.

Brotherly love, 


Being Pushed vs. Pulled by God. 

Pastor Furtick said last week that God doesn’t “PUSH” us but “PULLS” us, or “draws” us with His drawing power as it is written, “Come follow me”. 

Matthew 4:19* NIV

“Come, follow me,” Jesus said, “and I will send you out to fish for people.”

I can simply relate this to us being led or drawn to church and fellowship/Life Groups. We can only “push” people so much however, God has to DRAW us or lead us to obedience.   We cannot push a fish to bite, but we can draw or lure them in, amen? 

To the Bible buffs out there, at one time striking the rock was appropriate, but now God prefers for us to speak to it. 

And if people feel the love, they will come back.   But they have to experience the maturity, comfort and inspiration that comes with God’s love. 

John 6:44* NIV

“No one can come to me unless the Father who sent me draws them, and I will raise them up at the last day.”


*Matthew 4:19 (4+1+9=14)
*John 6:44 (6+4+4=14) Where “14” means “passover”, synonymous with Calvary where the Passover lamb was given for our sins. This “14” justly placed in reference to the verse “and I will raise them up at the LAST DAY.”

This “Last day” was Calvary. Jesus said “It is finished” on this day. And those of us that were “drawn” to carry our cross and followed Him to Calvary also left behind our sins and stepped into eternity and received His Spirit which He surrendered to us by His resurrection.

The Bible Meaning of Number 14. 

For me, this “push vs. pull” contrast is best explained as what we talked about before, on what resides in our hearts that is our true catalyst for drawing us to God and each other.  Is it Love or Sacrifice? 

Matthew 12:7 NASB

“But if you had known what this means, ‘I DESIRE COMPASSION, AND NOT A SACRIFICE,’ you would not have condemned the innocent.”

And why is “Sacrifice” so taboo?  Well, living as a sacrifice is not evil, but how we interpreted the word “sacrifice” in our hearts is what got us in trouble. 

True meaning of Sacrifice.  This link provides the TRUE meaning of Sacrifice according to the Jews who may know a thing or two about sacrifices. 

So for us, post Calvary, our hearts should have changed on how we desire to draw nearer to God.  It should not feel like a court appointed anger management class, but instead like visiting a precious loved one.  

Remember, traditional “sacrificial” behavior should have ended on Calvary.  Jesus Christ PAID IT ALL.  All Sacrifices and all our debts, and everything in the Old Testament that was by works failed. 

Romans 13:8 NIV

“Let no debt remain outstanding, except the continuing debt to love one another, for whoever loves others has fulfilled the law.”

But if we feel that we “owe” God or if we feel that we owe anyone anything, the only “debt” that should remain in our hearts is the simple debt to love one another. 

And what is love? 

1 Corinthians 13:4-7 NIV

“4Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. 5It does not dishonor others, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. 6Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. 7It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres.”

Now these are not my words, but by faith it is God’s.  I have just been broken down enough in my life that I learned to be still and reverend long enough where The Holy Spirit can speak to me and use my hands, knowledge, possessions and gifts for His glory. 

I am learning with you all.  I may never attain the things that God gives me via revelation, however it is okay, because I am very hungry and pray that He will never stop speaking to me or I stop being hungry.  

In the name that is synonymous with the splendor of Creation, Jesus Christ. 


Crossing Over From Sacrifice to Love. 

Acts 19 NIV“11God did extraordinary miracles through Paul, 12so that even handkerchiefs and aprons that had touched him were taken to the sick, and their illnesses were cured and the evil spirits left them.”

A simple reminder that we should never underestimate what little we do out of true unselfish love.

Mark 12 NLT

41Jesus sat down near the collection box in the Temple and watched as the crowds dropped in their money. Many rich people put in large amounts. 42Then a poor widow came and dropped in two small coins.

43Jesus called his disciples to him and said, “I tell you the truth, this poor widow has given more than all the others who are making contributions. 44For they gave a tiny part of their surplus, but she, poor as she is, has given everything she had to live on.”

Now on a side note, on verse 44, I would like to point out what the KJV and other versions like the YLT translate that was lost in other translations. 

“44for all, out of their abundance, put in, but she, out of her want, all that she had put in — all her living.” YLT/KJV

“But she, out of her want,” Out of her want, not out of sacrifice, not out of compulsion, or reluctancy, not out of tradition or what was lawful, not out of vanity, not out of fear that she was stealing from God, not out of any promise of good fortune, but simply out of her want.  


And also, the bible says she gave “two mites” which is the smallest of all Roman coins so we can say our equivalent was maybe two pennies.   

So ask yourself, would it be harder to give two pennies or two hundred dollars to someone? 

For me, because I worry what people think, it would be more difficult for me to give two pennies because my logical mind says this is foolish.   Really, two pennies? 

Now two-hundred dollars or more however is more logical, whether a “tithe” or an “offering”, this amount is more logical because more can be done with this amount. But that is where we are deceived. 

And to help us not get into the numbers game, God simply was looking at the hearts of those who gave and not the amount.  Because there are some who do give lavashly out of want and love and to them I say amen. 

This is why everything that is done in word or deed must be done in the name of Jesus Christ because His name is a reminder to us of this kind of “giving” via a heart of thanksgiving and love. 

Remember, “For God so LOVED the world that He GAVE His only Son”.  Out of love, not out of compulsion, reluctancy, or doubt, but out of love.  God did not have to, but wanted to.  There is no logical explanation for love, like there is no logical explanation for God and forgiveness. 

What is given freely should always be freely given.  Now this world has a way to sell us something that God has given us freely and to make us feel the sacrifices of life and what we have in this world is solely about what we earn and work for, however this “feeling” of having to “work for it” was a part of our curse in Eden.  

“It is only hard work if you lost your love and joy for it!” 

Genesis 3:17 NIV

“To Adam he said, “Because you listened to your wife and ate fruit from the tree about which I commanded you, ‘You must not eat from it,’ “Cursed is the ground because of you; through painful toil you will eat food from it all the days of your life.

From what we eat, to things we “buy” or what is given will carry a “curse” unless we have the faith to address it spiritually.  

Any “exchange” even with the air we breath, should always be received in love with a thankful heart.


Because of our fall in Eden, God had placed a curse on all things, physical and spiritual. And this curse is only broken if we can have the faith on what Calvary accomplished.  And Calvary addressed ALL spiritual and physical debts, with only one debt unpaid and that was the debt to love one another.  

Colossians 2:13-15 NIV

“13When you were dead in your sins and in the uncircumcision of your flesh, God made you alive with Christ. He forgave us all our sins, 14having canceled the charge of our legal indebtedness, which stood against us and condemned us; he has taken it away, nailing it to the cross. 15And having disarmed the powers and authorities, he made a public spectacle of them, triumphing over them by the cross.”

Other translations of Verse 14:


“Blotting out the handwriting of ordinances that was against us, which was contrary to us, and took it out of the way, nailing it to his cross;”


“He did this by erasing the charges that were brought against us by the written laws God had established. He took the charges away by nailing them to the cross.”

Galatians 3:13 NLT

“But Christ has rescued us from the curse pronounced by the law. When he was hung on the cross, he took upon himself the curse for our wrongdoing. For it is written in the Scriptures, “Cursed is everyone who is hung on a tree.”

Now back to Acts 19, in the case of Paul where these items simply touched by him left a spiritual “fingerprint” so to speak, was powerful enough that demons recognized that these items now represented something different and no longer was in a sacrificial CURSED” state, but instead, a reminder of God’s love and grace.

So if we look at things touched by sacrificial hearts and things done for selfish reasons, then these same demons, this legion of evil also leave there spiritual fingerprint in our lives and piggyback, disease, illness, and misfortune. 

Now I am not an anti-tither or giver.  But I do believe in everyone examining there heart before they give because so many give with an expectation and when our expectation of giving are not met, then guess what this produces?  

And true love gives without any expectations or an exchange, it is what defines grace.  

Our only expectations in life should be the promises from God and not of men.

And personally, the promises of Calvary far exceeded the promises of the “flood gates” via tithing in Malachi 3:10.   

Many Pastors will say, “Those who do not tithe is stealing from God.” Well, you cannot steal what God has given to you freely by grace.  But let us just all simply understand what Calvary was suppose to produce, and that was a change in our heart before a change in our circumstances.  

The Pharisees and Saduccees were very obedient in the Old Testament, even more so than us, however it was Not about simply obedience, but obedience in love.  

It was not enough to provide for my wife and kids physically, but also spiritually.  

“Seek FIRST the Kingdom of God and His righteousness and everything else will be added unto you.” 

And if you remain pessimistic on what the Tithe was suppose to produce, you need to read Matthew 17:24:27 and The Rev. Billy Graham’s position on the Tithe

Jude 1 GWT

“22Show mercy to those who have doubts. 23Save others by snatching them from the fire [of hell]. Show mercy to others, even though you are afraid that you might be stained by their sinful lives.24God can guard you so that you don’t fall and so that you can be full of joy as you stand in his glorious presence without fault. 25Before time began, now, and for eternity glory, majesty, power, and authority belong to the only God, our Savior, through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.”

And on those scriptures I close and also say, amen. 

Brotherly love,


Love and Sacrifice Continued. 

Matthew 16:6 NLT, notice “6” as a reminder of spiritual death, comes a simple and short story of how anything that we use to do out of love can easily TURN into “work” or sacrifice IF we are NOT on guard or concerned about the condition of our hearts as Jesus warned His disciples about this same “yeast” among the Pharisees and Sadducees.

“6“Watch out!” Jesus warned them. “Beware of the yeast of the Pharisees and Sadducees.”

If you have time to read the whole story, verses 5-12, it is really a lot of wisdom in such a short story.

First, I see a lesson on love and sacrifice. The disciples forgot bread, which I guess was something they would normally be led to remember out of love and forgot.

Second, comes a lesson on how LEFT BRAIN we are.

And lastly, how all this links to a deceptive teaching of the Pharisees and Sadducees.

In simplicity, their teachings were about sacrifice and exchange. Where we had placed so many rules in our lives that our relationships and intimacy suffered. 

“What man led to complicate via knowledge, Jesus came to simplify via faith.”

Now to their defense, the Pharisees and Sadducees were only producing what the Levitical law intended. But Jesus had to call them out so He may open the eyes of the disciples and us.

He had to show us what He came to fix. And like I said, they were Levites, ordered by Moses to yield their swords on their own people(Exodus 32:25-29), but what is our excuse?

Well post Calvary, we don’t have one, and let us not take for granted the lessons learned in the “Old” and may it serve us as a reminder of what Jesus came to fix.

Remember Jesus said that He would send the Counselor to “remind” us of everything He had taught the disciples. 

Matthew 16 NLT

Yeast of the Pharisees and Sadducees

“5Later, after they crossed to the other side of the lake, the disciples discovered they had forgotten to bring any bread. 6“Watch out!” Jesus warned them. “Beware of the yeast of the Pharisees and Sadducees.”7At this they began to argue with each other because they hadn’t brought any bread. 8Jesus knew what they were saying, so he said, “You have so little faith! Why are you arguing with each other about having no bread? 9Don’t you understand even yet? Don’t you remember the 5,000 I fed with five loaves, and the baskets of leftovers you picked up? 10Or the 4,000 I fed with seven loaves, and the large baskets of leftovers you picked up? 11Why can’t you understand that I’m not talking about bread? So again I say, ‘Beware of the yeast of the Pharisees and Sadducees.’”12Then at last they understood that he wasn’t speaking about the yeast in bread, but about the deceptive teaching of the Pharisees and Sadducees.”

Exodus 32 NIV

“25Moses saw that the people were running wild and that Aaron had let them get out of control and so become a laughingstock to their enemies. 26So he stood at the entrance to the camp and said, “Whoever is for the Lord, come to me.” And all the Levites rallied to him. 27Then he said to them, “This is what the Lord, the God of Israel, says: ‘Each man strap a sword to his side. Go back and forth through the camp from one end to the other, each killing his brother and friend and neighbor.’ ” 28The Levites did as Moses commanded, and that day about three thousand of the people died. 29Then Moses said, “You have been set apart to the Lord today, for you were against your own sons and brothers, and he has blessed you this day.”

I didn’t want to believe it either, but it is true. But it also gave me rest, compassion and forgiveness for what they did to Jesus and the disciples. They truly did not know what they were doing. 

 It wasn’t their fault, they were only carrying out the orders of which they were given and the fear of the Lord is truly the beginning of ALL wisdom.

John the Baptist, as the last Levite to have the anointing of the Holy Spirit declared, “I must decrease so that He must increase.”, was a statement about the Levitical law and heart.  The Levite reign was over and justice was about to meet grace.   And what transpired here, may it also transpire in the believer’s heart. 

Gotta go, but please remember my kids in prayer, we got the stomach bug running around. 

In the name of our King Jesus Christ, amen. 

Brotherly love,