Journey of Healing Pt.2 – I Matter to God

Podcast Topic:

God having all the power in the universe means nothing to our healing if He doesn’t care about us.

How can we learn to trust God with our lives if we don’t believe we matter to Him?


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Posted in Podcasts, Spiritual Growth

Journey of Healing Pt.1 – Realize I’m Not God

Podcast Topic:

Some of you reading this title may say, “Obviously, I’m not God. I know that,” but you may be surprised to learn that the way we live our lives often says otherwise. (more…)

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A New Revolution



Do you want to experience real change in the New Year? If we want to find purpose in our lives, we have to understand the purpose we were created for.


For everything comes from [God] and exists by His power and is intended for His glory… (Romans 11:36 NLT).


That doesn’t just mean the way the earth flies around the sun. It doesn’t just mean the majesty of creation as it’s described in Psalm 19. You and I were created to bring God glory.
So the question for this New Year is this: Is your life bringing glory to God—fully and completely? If not, then we need to be changed. But we look at our lives and it seems impossible.That’s because we need something stronger than resolutions—we need a revolution.


The word revolution means “a sudden, radical, or complete change” (Merriam-Webster). But we are incapable of creating a true revolution in our lives because we have too much loyalty to our old country. We try to keep dual citizenship in both the Kingdom of God and in the Nation of Me.


 But the Kingdom of God does not recognize dual citizenship. If everything was created by God for His glory, then there is no secondary life. There is one purpose.  And the only one who can change us to fulfill that purpose is God.

The only way for there to be a NEW REVOLUTION in our lives is if we seek a REVELATION from God.

Personal revolution only comes from God’s revelation…


I was honored to share this message at Brookwood Church on the morning of New Year’s Eve. The message outline, discussion guide, resources for families, and worship are available on the church website.


We are incapable of holiness. We are only capable of accepting Christ's holiness in us. #discipleship



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Posted in Sermons, Spiritual Growth

Thanksgiving Every Day

The following devotional was shared by Joshua J Masters during the Brookwood Church Celebrate Recovery Thanksgiving celebration, A Reflection of Thanks, on Thanksgiving evening.


Always be joyful. Never stop praying. Be thankful in all circumstances, for this is God’s will for you who belong to Christ Jesus.
(1 Thessalonians 5:16-18 NLT)


Happy Thanksgiving, everyone! This is the 3rd annual Thanksgiving meal hosted by Brookwood Celebrate Recovery and I’m so grateful you’re here.

I’m not usually snarky on Facebook, but not long ago I broke that rule. A friend of mine was ranting about their experience at the airport. The line took forever, their bags got searched, and they got searched. But then they got on their flight and got where they were going.

I said, “So let me get this straight. You took an hour getting through a building where you got in a machine that brought you across the country in just a couple hours—a distance that would have taken months to travel just a little over a hundred years ago? And then you had a relaxing vacation?”

Perspective. The problem is, I’ve whined on my way to a vacation in the airport too.

Make sure you hear this: We are truly blessed when we count our blessings as inconveniences.
How many of us have complained about something that’s actually a blessing in our lives? We’re not always good at being grateful for our blessings. But the truth is, we’re actually called to be thankful for a lot more than our blessings.

In the Bible, Paul described 3 expectations for the life of every Christian—three hallmarks that identify those who follow Christ. Some scholars call these three things “the standing order of the church.” They’re found in 1 Thessalonians 5:16-18:

Always be joyful. Never stop praying. Be thankful in all circumstances, for this is God’s will for you who belong to Christ Jesus. (1 Thessalonians 5:16-18 NLT)
That’s it.
Always be Joyful.
Never Stop Praying.
Be Thankful in all circumstances.

That’s God’s will for our lives.
Here’s the problem (especially when it comes to being joyful and thankful), we usually view them as the destination rather than the path.
To put it another way, we look for things to make us joyful rather than living a life of joy and gratitude.
Let’s take a few minutes to explore each of these commands:

1. Always be Joyful. (v. 16)

So do we live joy, or do we look for things to make us joyful?
The logic of this world is that we should pursue things that make us happy, but the Christian life often seems contrary to logic, doesn’t it?
I love riding horses—there’s probably few things in this world that bring me more joy… but that’s the catch. I’m looking for things in this world to bring me joy—when I’m supposed to already possess it.
Perhaps the most difficult word in this verse is “always.” At all times—the word means forever. Are we joyful all the time? I know I’m not. But joy is meant to be the constant and consistent state of believers. How is that possible? It’s possible when Jesus is the center of our lives—truly the center. Because He is the source of joy. It’s a natural byproduct of His power in your life.
Psalm 16:11 (NLT) says:

You will show me the way of life,
granting me the joy of your presence
and the pleasures of living with you forever.
This is a difficult truth, but if joy is granted through being in Christ’s presence and allow Him to show me the way of life—what does it mean if I don’t have joy? It means I’m not truly in his presence, or at some level, I’m trying to live life my own way.
Pursuing joy leads to emptiness. But pursuing Christ naturally creates joy.
That leads us to the second command:

2. Never Stop Praying. (v. 17)

If we’re called to be always joyful and joy comes from connecting with Christ, then prayer should be the constant attitude of every Christian.
For most of us reading that verse, the first thing that comes to our mind is, “How is that possible?” I have CrossFit (well, I’ve never said that), but I have work, I have to go grocery shopping. I can’t spend all day praying.
Well, Jesus certainly had dedicated times of prayer (and we should too), but even when he was traveling, or teaching, or eating—he was never disconnected from the Father. So even when we’re working, doing errands, or even playing—we should still enjoy an ongoing communion and relationship with Jesus.
Colossians 3:23-24 (NIV) says:
Whatever you do, work at it with all your heart, as working for the Lord, not for human masters, since you know that you will receive an inheritance from the Lord as a reward. It is the Lord Christ you are serving.
That’s only possible when we’re communicating with God in an ongoing way throughout the day—about everything.
Consider Philippians 4:6-7 (NLT):
Don’t worry about anything; instead, pray about everything. Tell God what you need, and thank him for all he has done. Then you will experience God’s peace, which exceeds anything we can understand. His peace will guard your hearts and minds as you live in Christ Jesus.
This verse says that continual prayer leads to peace and thanksgiving—a peace that is beyond human understanding. And that’s exactly the point. Having continual joy and being in a state of never-ending prayer seems inconceivable from a human standpoint, but this Thanksgiving God wants to offer us something beyond the possible. He wants us to have a peace and a joy that is only available through Him—peace and joy beyond our understanding.
And when we have that kind of peace, we will find Thanksgiving in everything around us—because we’ll see God working through it.
That leads us to the third expectation in verse 18:

3. Be Thankful in all circumstances. (v. 18)

Think about this—why is Thanksgiving necessary? Why do we have this holiday? It’s because we’re not naturally thankful. If we were, we wouldn’t need a day to remind us to be thankful.
What if we decided for the next year that EVERY day was Thanksgiving?
I mean, you can’t eat pumpkin pie every day, but the thankful part—what if we lived that every day? Because the key to this verse is the phrase “in all circumstances.”
The question we usually ask one another on Thanksgiving is, “What do you HAVE to be thankful for?” The answer is everything. Every circumstance can bring gratitude because we believe what God says in Romans 8:28 (NLT):

And we know that God causes everything to work together for the good of those who love God and are called according to his purpose for them.

We look at difficult circumstances through the lens of having read the end of the story and knowing who wrote it.
It is possible to be thankful in all circumstances.
Most of you know Anne Frank was a Jewish teenager who hid in a secret room for 2 years—her family and friends were being hunted by the Nazis. They couldn’t even move around in the room during the day for fear of being caught. Yet she wrote this:

“I do not think of all the misery, but of the glory that remains”
–Anne Frank
Thankfulness in all circumstances. Anne Frank was less than 15 years old when she wrote that. I don’t think we give teenagers enough credit for what they can teach us.
So I asked the students at the Landing (which is our Celebrate Recovery program for grades 7-12) to help me with this devotional. I asked them 5 questions about gratitude and thanksgiving. As we look at their answers, take a few moments to consider how you’ll answer these five questions this Thanksgiving.


Look carefully at Psalm 28:7 (NLT):
The Lord is my strength and shield.
I trust him with all my heart.
He helps me, and my heart is filled with joy.
I burst out in songs of thanksgiving.
When we truly embrace the concept that trusting God with all our hearts leads to our hearts being filled with joy—that His strength will make us burst out in songs of thanksgiving—then we’ll have Thanksgiving every day.


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Posted in Prayer, Spiritual Growth

What is the Cost of Following Jesus?

What is the cost of following Jesus? I was honored to speak at Brookwood Church last Sunday when we explored that question together. The passage from Luke 14:25-35 can be a difficult one for many of us (myself included). So what does it truly mean to be a follower of Christ? What does discipleship in Christ require?


The outline, discussion questions and Family Talk guides for this message are available on the church website.


How do you struggle with the concepts addressed in this passage?


What is the Cost of Following Jesus? via @joshuajmasters | #discipleship #faith |
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Posted in Sermons, Spiritual Growth

The Two Question Prayer: When You Don’t Know How to Pray

<VIDEO: The Two Question Prayer by Joshua J Masters>

What should you pray when you don’t know what to say anymore? What do you do when you feel like you’re out of prayers? As a pastor, I’ve had a lot of people tell me they’re tired of praying.They’ve asked God to change their circumstance, fix their relationships, or transform their lives—but they still don’t feel connected to God.

I’ve experienced that same drought of divine intimacy myself, and it’s often because I’m focused on an outcome rather than my relationship with God. During those times, I’d obviously tell you I desire a closeness with God. But in reality, my heart and actions would reveal a secret hypocrisy. Is it possible that we feel disconnected from God—that He’s not answering our prayer because we’re asking the wrong questions?

What if we changed the focus of our prayers from us to Him? What if we simply asked God two questions: (more…)

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Joshua J. Masters is a pastor, author (American Psalms), and speaker. He has been featured on CBN, HIS Radio, and the Light Radio Network.  As a member of the Screen Actors Guild and the American Federation of Television and Radio Artists (SAG-AFTRA), Josh has also worked both in front of and behind the camera in the film industry.  He lives with his wife, Gina, and their dog, Franklin, in South Carolina where Josh serves as a care pastor.



© 2018 Joshua J. Masters and Kingdom Knight Productions. All rights Reserved.

© 2018 Joshua J. Masters & Kingdom Knight Productions. All rights Reserved.