Smart-Mouth College

In honor of the first day of school, here’s a little wisdom!

Psalm 1:1 How well God must like you – you don’t hang out at Sin Saloon, you don’t slink along Dead-End Road, you don’t go to Smart-Mouth College. 2 Instead you thrill to God’s Word, you chew on Scripture day and night. 3 You’re a tree replanted in Eden, bearing fresh fruit every month, Never dropping a leaf, always in blossom.
4 You’re not at all like the wicked, who are mere windblown dust – 5 Without defense in court, unfit company for innocent people. 6 God charts the road you take. The road they take is Skid Row. -“The Message”

Prophesy and Pastors

christian.plochack i's photostream
christian.plochack i's photostream

This was a note from Sergio:

Dear Pastor Susan, at some point in my life i was thinking about all the preachers who have shown that the Holy Spirit was in them, they prophesied, said things directly from God ect. So far so good. The Bible warns us about false people and I am aware of that. You know that there are different types of pastors out there who sometimes contradict each other and have different beliefs. So all the sudden I WONDER “Maybe it was a demon who made them do all those things (Say prophesies ect.)” I had a huge rush inside of me, thinking about what I did, I asked God for forgiveness and refused to beleive such thought, I did not declare it nor do i beleive it. And this all brings back the story of the Pharisees. My question is have i blasphemed the Holy Spirit?

Hi Sergio,

Questioning is not blaspheming. The bible says we are test every spirit to see if it is of God. This is how you know:

John 4:1 My dear friends, don’t believe everything you hear. Carefully weigh and examine what people tell you. Not everyone who talks about God comes from God. There are a lot of lying preachers loose in the world. 2 Here’s how you test for the genuine Spirit of God. Everyone who confesses openly his faith in Jesus Christ – the Son of God, who came as an actual flesh-and-blood person – comes from God and belongs to God. 3 And everyone who refuses to confess faith in Jesus has nothing in common with God. This is the spirit of antichrist that you heard was coming. Well, here it is, sooner than we thought!
4 My dear children, you come from God and belong to God. You have already won a big victory over those false teachers, for the Spirit in you is far stronger than anything in the world. 5 These people belong to the Christ-denying world. They talk the world’s language and the world eats it up. 6 But we come from God and belong to God. Anyone who knows God understands us and listens. The person who has nothing to do with God will, of course, not listen to us. This is another test for telling the Spirit of Truth from the spirit of deception.

You can tell a prophet of God by his prophesies coming to pass and not after the fact either. I have met so many people who knew something was going to happen after it happened.

Questioning or doubting the things of God happen to us all. It’s in what we do with that doubt or question that our hearts are revealed. When we are shown the truth and it answers the question we stop doubting and believe. Read here about information on blaspheming the Holy Spirit.

He Is A Provider And Protector

This is the fourth installment on a series that began here.


OOOOO this post gets me excited because this is where we as women miss the mark completely on the men we choose to share our lives. “I can fix him”, is the common thing I hear. But sister let me tell you that if your man isn’t working now he isn’t going to work later. As I always say, “If he’s broke, don’t fix him.” And yeah I do mean financially too, if he is working and not rich fine, but if he is living off of mommy and daddy or whoever his girlfriend is at the moment, he’s not marriage material. Period. Let’s read what the bible says about this:

Genesis 2:7 the Lord God formed the man from the dust of the ground and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life, and the man became a living being

If you want a provider and protector you first have to find a man who has a relationship with his Father in heaven. How do you get closer in relationship then to have the breath of God bring you to life? This is critical ladies and I hope you are paying attention!

8 Now the Lord God had planted a garden in the east, in Eden; and there he put the man he had formed. 9 And the Lord God made all kinds of trees grow out of the ground–trees that were pleasing to the eye and good for food. In the middle of the garden were the tree of life and the tree of the knowledge of good and evil.

Notice Adam was not living in his daddy’s house. You want a man who has lived on his own while still maintaining a relationship with his family. A man has to stand on his own two feet first and know how to feed himself.

15 The Lord God took the man and put him in the Garden of Eden to work it and take care of it.

Before a woman can even consider a man for marriage material she has to ask him a critical question. “Are you working?” If not, do not pass go and do not collect $200. Make a decision. Either you will wait until he is working to have feelings for him or you won’t. That is up to you but I would not under any circumstances date a man who isn’t working. He isn’t ready for a relationship. Between jobs? Then he’s between getting me and not. Before you go thinking this is about money, it’s about a man who knows how to provide for himself and isn’t looking for a mommy to breastfeed him.

16 And the Lord God commanded the man, “You are free to eat from any tree in the garden; 17 but you must not eat from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, for when you eat of it you will surely die.”

God gave the man some rules to live by. Is your man submitted to rules to live by? Character and morals are shaped on this premise. What are his rules and what does he live by? This is critical so don’t miss it. You’ll find men who are wild and out of control and we like those bad boys but we don’t marry them. I seriously hope you are reading this today because I am giving you some good advice. Does he have babies here, there and everywhere? I know he said the condom broke or the woman tricked him but it speaks to his character.
The rules of conduct of a man aren’t very important to him and if he isn’t supporting and seeing those babies then he isn’t submitted and he won’t be different for you.

Does he drink a little too much, gamble a little too much? Then expect that in your life. Is he a good man, but doesn’t believe in God? This won’t pose a problem to you if you are a follower of Christ until you have children. Once you have children, it will become extremely important to you so again, choose with the end in mind.

18 The Lord God said, “It is not good for the man to be alone. I will make a helper suitable for him.” 19 Now the Lord God had formed out of the ground all the beasts of the field and all the birds of the air. He brought them to the man to see what he would name them; and whatever the man called each living creature, that was its name. 20 So the man gave names to all the livestock, the birds of the air and all the beasts of the field. But for Adam no suitable helper was found.

Notice, God didn’t say, “Now Adam, I think the time has come for you to get married.” NO! He waited for Adam to see his need for a mate. Don’t go around thinking that because your man is 28 that he wants to get married. It’s different for everyone. Don’t push for marriage just because you’ve dated for two years. Don’t give ultimatums. When your man is ready to get married and he has his life in order with the things we’ve blogged about here then he will tell you. This is the mistake I see time and time again. Pressure may make him do the thing you want but pressure will not make him stay. And quit wondering why he won’t marry you if you are sleeping together. Remember that old saying, ‘Why the buy the cow if you can get the milk for free?’ It totally applies here.

22 Then the Lord God made a woman from the rib he had taken out of the man, and he brought her to the man. 23The man said, “This is now bone of my bones and flesh of my flesh; she shall be called ‘woman,’ for she was taken out of man.” 24 For this reason a man will leave his father and mother and be united to his wife, and they will become one flesh.

You want to avoid the mama’s boy? When he sees for himself what is required of him is when you’ll get that. Don’t shortchange what God has put in place.



Your Lord, is your provider and your protector. There is nothing he wouldn’t do for you. There is no place he wouldn’t go for you. He laid down his life at your feet, for the chance and opportunity to have your love. His life is ordered just as he set up Adam’s life, for God used his own pattern. To do anything else is to live a life of uncertainty. God made our number one need as women to be loved and feel secure. The bible never once tells a woman to love her man. She does that automatically. He tells the man to love his wife and take care of her. Why? Because God does. He loves you and takes care of you. No one had to tell him to. No one had to push him to. He did it because he wanted to.

You will know when a man is ready for marriage because he will move towards it. Until then, make wise decisions with your life. Either you are willing to wait for his decision or you aren’t and you move on. Do not give yourself away to a man who is not ready. And certainly do not give your heart to a boy who doesn’t know what he wants and hasn’t earned his position in your life, no matter his age. You only have one heart so give it to someone who will nourish and protect it.



The women of TLC studied a woman from the bible named Dorcas. Yes, that’s really a name and if you blink, you miss her story. But her story is powerful and just so you know, despite how her name sounds in today’s culture, it was a name of beauty in the biblical days. Her story is all of six verses but they are powerful.

Acts 9:36 In Joppa there was a disciple named Tabitha (which, when translated, is Dorcas), who was always doing good and helping the poor. 37 About that time she became sick and died, and her body was washed and placed in an upstairs room. 38 Lydda was near Joppa; so when the disciples heard that Peter was in Lydda, they sent two men to him and urged him, “Please come at once!” 39 Peter went with them, and when he arrived he was taken upstairs to the room. All the widows stood around him, crying and showing him the robes and other clothing that Dorcas had made while she was still with them. 40 Peter sent them all out of the room; then he got down on his knees and prayed. Turning toward the dead woman, he said, “Tabitha, get up.” She opened her eyes, and seeing Peter she sat up. 41 He took her by the hand and helped her to her feet. Then he called the believers and the widows and presented her to them alive. 42 This became known all over Joppa, and many people believed in the Lord.

So here was Dorcas, a woman who worked in the church. Dorcas was one of the first converts as a follower of Christ. I won’t call her a Christian because in that day of the bible it was considered a put down word that the heathens gave the people who believed that Christ was who he said he was. Instead the bible calls her a disciple of Christ. She has a lot to teach us.

The very first sentence was she was always doing good and helping the poor. Always means always. This wasn’t an exaggeration. We need to know when to say NO. We need to know when we need to rest and just hang out and go put our feet in the sand of a beach. There will always be things that people need but we also need to take care of ourselves. It says she became sick. What was she doing working when she was sick? I’m not talking working through a cold or working through being tired or working through a mild headache. This woman was obviously very sick because the next thing we see is she drops dead at work. Can you imagine that? So sick that she drops dead! She needed to be home in bed or in the hospital. She needed to take care of herself.

The people in her local church sent for the apostle Peter and he prayed and God raised her up from the dead. I wonder what she thought? What a powerful way to get a second chance. We are studying about assessing the situations in our lives. What do we need to do versus what can wait? How can we pace ourselves and still accomplish our goals? How can we take care of our bodies while still taking care of others? What is too much to do and what needs to be delegated to others? As one of the TLC women appropriately said, “We are little Dorkitas.” It was hysterically funny to me but so true. Can you relate to her story? Do you see where you need to change some things in your life, places to pick it up and places to lay it down? Read her story again. It’s a small story, powerful message. What is it speaking to you about?

Playing The Field

James 4:1 Where do you think all these appalling wars and quarrels come from? Do you think they just happen? Think again. They come about because you want your own way, and fight for it deep inside yourselves. 2 You lust for what you don’t have and are willing to kill to get it. You want what isn’t yours and will risk violence to get your hands on it. 3 And why not? Because you know you’d be asking for what you have no right to. You’re spoiled children, each wanting your own way. 4 You’re cheating on God. If all you want is your own way, flirting with the world every chance you get, you end up enemies of God and his way.5 And do you suppose God doesn’t care? The proverb has it that “he’s a fiercely jealous lover.” 6 And what he gives in love is far better than anything else you’ll find. It’s common knowledge that “God goes against the willful proud; God gives grace to the willing humble.” 7 So let God work his will in you. Yell a loud no to the Devil and watch him scamper. 8 Say a quiet yes to God and he’ll be there in no time. Quit dabbling in sin. Purify your inner life. Quit playing the field. 9 Hit bottom, and cry your eyes out. The fun and games are over. Get serious, really serious. 10 Get down on your knees before the Master; it’s the only way you’ll get on your feet.

11 Don’t bad-mouth each other, friends. It’s God’s Word, his Message, his Royal Rule, that takes a beating in that kind of talk. You’re supposed to be honoring the Message, not writing graffiti all over it. 12 God is in charge of deciding human destiny. Who do you think you are to meddle in the destiny of others? 13 And now I have a word for you who brashly announce, “Today – at the latest, tomorrow – we’re off to such and such a city for the year. We’re going to start a business and make a lot of money.” 14 You don’t know the first thing about tomorrow. You’re nothing but a wisp of fog, catching a brief bit of sun before disappearing. 15 Instead, make it a habit to say, “If the Master wills it and we’re still alive, we’ll do this or that.” 16 As it is, you are full of your grandiose selves. All such vaunting self-importance is evil. 17 In fact, if you know the right thing to do and don’t do it, that, for you, is evil. -The Message

Those Teachable Moments

This week, a homeless couple came to the church looking for help. The girl looked not much over 18 if that, the boy looked about that age. Dirty, walking around town, they walked into our doors. We talked to them and discovered they had no place to stay for the night. Pastor Doug got out a food voucher for the grocery store and paid for a night in a motel.

The next day they were back at the church again looking for another food voucher and another night at a hotel. I asked what their story was. The girl told me that her parents live in our city! I was amazed to say the least. I asked her why she wasn’t staying with them. She promptly told me that they were of the Apostolic faith and they did not approve of her shacking up with her boyfriend. They would not allow her to stay there. Or rather, she corrected, she could stay there but he could not. The following day they were back again. Looking for more help they confessed that her aunt and uncle had taken them in for a night but she had argued with her uncle because he had stipulations to their stay.  He made her leave his home since she could not respect his home. I felt bad for them but my husband put it all in perspective for our family and I want to share it with you. He used it as an example to our children.

He said in this way, ‘This is why we think it’s so important that you follow our rules. We aren’t being harsh but we expect for you guys to help out around the house, be respectful and do things we ask of you. This young couple didn’t learn that lesson. They were given a home to stay in when they were homeless. Instead of being grateful for the roof, they instead began to argue with the owner. Because they never learned obedience they were unable to see the blessing they were being given. For us now to help them in their rebellion to her parents would not be the right thing to do. The best thing for this girl to do is to go home to her family and for her boyfriend to go to his parents home and to begin on the right foot.’

It impacted me because their dilemma was a product of their disobedience. They would rather be homeless than conform to the rules of their parent’s home and yet, were unable to support themselves and wanted others to help. Even after Pastor Doug had said all of this to this girl, she persisted in coming by the church each day. This girl was very determined and said she would not leave the church until she spoke directly to the pastor. In this moment, she didn’t have the sense to realize she didn’t have the power to demand anything.

I began to see a picture of her as a child in the grocery store saying, “Mom can I have a candy?” Her mother answering, “Not today.” “Mom, plllleeaaaseeee can I have a candy.” “Not today.” “Mooooommmmmm, please can I have candy? Mom, mom, mom, mom, please just one?” Her mother angry at her daughter’s persistence sighing and responding, “FINE! GO GET YOUR CANDY.”

It’s in those little teachable moments where character is built. The bible says to let our yes be yes and our no be no but how often do we give in? Would we still give in if we could see the bigger picture of the future? When our desire becomes one where no one is ever unhappy, we do whatever it takes knowing it’s the wrong thing to do.  I wonder, do we become accountable later for the results we created?

I do feel bad for this girl but not how you may think. I feel bad that no one ever taught her how to live within the rules of freedom. It came home in an example in our home immediately this week. One of our kids had refused to do their laundry on their day. When their dad asked why not they proudly stood up, hands on hips and said, “What difference does it make to you when I do it?” See, the point is not when you want to do it, the point is when it’s time to do it.This weekend when the same child wanted to go to the movies at a certain time guess what happened? Dad quietly said, “What difference does it make when I take you as long as I take you?” I think the lesson has been learned at least in our home.

Those of you who are still raising kids please read this and learn a valuable lessons. We can’t save our kids from all heartache but we can help in teaching early lessons that help later. Those of you who have raised your children but they are still sponging because of this exact thing, I pray that you let your yes be yes and your no be no. I know it hurts when our children are in pain and I can’t even imagine what it would feel like to have my daughter running around homeless and I pray I never have to know but it is all about choices and those little teachable moments.


2 Corinthians 6:1 We then, as workers together with Him also plead with you  not to receive the grace of God in vain.

Grace. We sing about it and we thank God for it but what is it? Grace for the most part is a word thrown around that isn’t quite understood. So it’s no wonder that most of us do receive the grace of God in vain because we don’t understand it and so therefore, we don’t use it wisely.To use anything to its full potential we must know its purpose.

Grace in the American Heritage dictionary is defined as;

Seemingly effortless beauty or charm of movement, form, or proportion.

A characteristic or quality pleasing for its charm or refinement.

A sense of fitness or propriety.

A disposition to be generous or helpful; goodwill. Mercy; clemency. A favor rendered by one who need not do so; indulgence.A temporary immunity or exemption; a reprieve.

So then does Grace mean God moves around effortlessly and so we shouldn’t receive it in vain? It could, I suppose, include this in that we shouldn’t take him for granted because he’s always there for us. Sure, we can be more appreciative and grateful for his grace.

Is it the sense of fitness or propriety? Well, it can be as well. We must always be reverent to the Lord. There is a certain way to approach him. He is after all the King of kings.

But here in this scripture and what I am blogging about today is the last definitions of; A disposition to be generous or helpful; goodwill; Mercy; clemency; A favor rendered by one who need not do so; indulgence; A temporary immunity or exemption; a reprieve.

See, grace is like that hall pass that you use to move from the classroom to the office without getting in trouble by the hall monitor. Grace is a favor God is giving you when he doesn’t have to. Grace is what your parents give when you wreck their car and they let you drive the only car left in the family when they didn’t have to. Grace is the credit card company accepting your late payment without interest or penalty.

When we get these kinds of breaks we should be thankful. It should cause us to be more careful the next time, it should cause us to think before we act. Too often though, the grace that God bestows goes unnoticed or worse, taken for granted. “I know I can sin and I’ll repent later because I know God will forgive me.” This is what it means to receive the grace of God in vain. It would be as if the thief, pardoned by the judge is free from jail time and goes out to rob again. It was a useless pardon. Better the judge would have saved his breath.Grace was not designed to illicit this kind of ungrateful, unrepentant behavior. Rather, grace was designed for acknowledgment of the wrong doing and a change in behavior. Repentance, is a turning away from the sin and a return down the right path.

Grace in its very essence empowers you to do what truth demands of you. Truth demands a righteous life, truth demands that you change the way things are done. Grace is freely given by God but do not mistake grace for weakness. Grace is anything but weak. It is a powerful tool that is bestowed to bring about a change. While God may grant grace, he doesn’t set out to fix you, only you can do that.

Pro Age


I love the Dove pro age campaign. I was one who had a problem with the term anti-aging, the alternative being grim. While I don’t want to look or feel old I am not ready to die either. Do you ever just take a long look in the mirror and see how your body is changing? For me ,over the last year or so, I’ve seen some major changes. In the past, weight being so easy to maintain is becoming a struggle. My gynecologist says <em>at my age</em> I have to double my workout routine. I have to be honest and say I don’t feel old enough to be a woman who “at my age” comments need to be made.

I see little lines beginning to form on my face and my skin beginning to feel like my moms. I had to laugh when a man came to me after church service. He said that he had to give me credit because when I raised my arms my skin doesn’t flop around like other women my age. (There’s that at your age comment again)! Uh, I didn’t know what to say to that. Thanks? Do you ever wish people had a filter?

I don’t know if I’ll ever have plastic surgery. I am not against it, I’m just scared to have surgery but will vanity outweigh fear at some point? I can’t say for sure. Age has taught me to never say never. (Okay, now I’m doing the “at my age” stuff). For now, I am perplexed and sometimes a little freaked out over the changes I see. I have gray hair coming in. Not a lot so far, I have seen about a dozen strands but they are there nevertheless, my stylist calls them “the nine”. So I have to keep my hair appointments going so they don’t show. Thank you Jesus that dye was created!

I am learning not to take my body for granted anymore. I am trying to eat better, exercise more and take life a little easier. In my mind I don’t feel old though. I guess I am beginning to understand why my mom randomly says, “How is it that I have a daughter who is 44?” Age just creeps up on you.

When I look at the lines that are beginning to appear I have to say I have earned them. Life hasn’t been easy but it’s been an adventure. So many people come to Christ expecting that it’s like finding a genie in a bottle. Problem with that is that the bible doesn’t say life will be a piece of cake, it says to gain your life you have to lose your life. Sounds complicated but it really isn’t. You just begin to live for things outside of yourself. You begin to focus on the bigger picture. Suddenly it’s not all about you.

In this picture I look comfortable with myself even though I have no makeup on. I struggled whether to post it or not because it’s not my best look but whatever. To me, I look like I’ve figured out who I am. I have learned to be at peace with myself. I look at my eyes in this picture and it looks to me like I have a secret of well-being and a sense of humor. Here’s the secret: Life is meant to be lived, not to be observed, so make the very best of each situation. Trials and heartache are going to come but God was right when he said this too shall pass. I’ll leave you with this question. One year ago today what were you worried about? Most of the time, we don’t even remember what it was but at the time it was super important. So just enjoy your life. How’s that for a woman my age?

He Is A Confidant


The word confidant means trustworthy, the one with whom secrets are entrusted. That’s what I love about making my Lord my secret keeper is that he is good at it. I just pour out my heart to him and he keeps it. He’s trustworthy like no other person I have ever met. He is one who can keep my heart. You see, he tells me;

Proverbs 4:23 – Above all else, guard your heart, for it is the wellspring of life.

Often though, women tend to give their hearts away as if they can grow another. We can’t and we aren’t supposed to. We are to guard our own hearts. We can share our hearts and that’s a wonderful thing but we don’t let go of it. That is against what we know to be the will of God. So when we say to someone, “You broke my heart.” Well, you gave it when you shouldn’t have. At any moment you need to be able to handle your heart.

God is good at being trustworthy with your heart. He is trustworthy and whether you believe it or not is, he has your best interest at heart. I was raised Catholic and my idea of God was one in which I saw a Moses looking figure on a throne waiting to electrocute me with a flash from his finger. When I was older and really saw his heart towards me I realized he wanted to be my dad. He wanted to hear my worries, he wanted to hear my dreams, he wanted to hear my fears and my accomplishments. He wanted a relationship with me where he could listen and speak. He wanted to be my confidant.

I trust him with all of my being to know me enough to not ever step on my heart. The man you are looking for can be your confidant. He may fumble your heart, but remember you are there to catch it so that it doesn’t harm you, but it will truly not be malicious or thought out. We all fail each other at times. Overall though, he must have the character of God.