"Golden Hour"

2 Peter 1:19 (NIV) We also have the prophetic message as something completely reliable, and you will do well to pay attention to it, as to a light shining in a dark place, until the day dawns and the morning star rises in your hearts.

For a photographer, the best light of the day is morning light. The quality of the light is warm, glowing and it enhances the colors of everything else. Sometimes morning fog drapes the landscape. It is called the “Golden Hour.” The only downside to morning light is that it changes quickly and soon gives way to “normal” daylight.

God’s word is warm, glowing and He enhances everything and everyone. Unlike the Golden Hour, God’s word does not go away, but there are optimal times for receiving it. Insight from God is not “on-demand" like our cable box, Roku, or AppleTV. We don’t switch Him on and off as we do our televisions.

While God is ever-present, He wants to, and we need to, enjoy special time with Him. Those times are special because of the insights, ideas, and inspiration we receive. It feels like, and looks like, a new day dawning and the sun rising.

Life is full of necessary routines. Look forward to your special Golden Hour with the Lord.

The Great Exchange...."Jesus on the Mainline"

But those who hope in the Lord will renew [exchange] their strength. They will soar on wings like eagles; they will run and not grow weary, they will walk and not be faint. Isaiah 40:31 

From time to time, we all need renewal and refreshing. The normal activities and challenges of life take a toll. There are also special circumstances like the passing of loved ones or unexpected setbacks in life.

Whatever the situation, God has made a provision through His grace. Grace is everything God has that He makes available to us.  And of His fullness we have all received, and grace for grace. (John 1:16)

God’s method for renewal is something I call “The Great Exchange.” This is nothing new. It is a very old and biblical understanding of how God works in our lives. We cannot change ourselves using our own strength. We can make superficial adjustments, but deep and lasting change must come from our Creator. 

The Great Exchange began with Jesus giving His holy life for our sinful lives. He died in our place to take away our sins, and not only our sins but the sins of all people. (1 John 2:2, New Century Version)

As a photographer, I’ve become highly skilled at using my various cameras, but when my camera needs deep cleaning, calibration or repair, I have to send it to Nikon, Canon, Sony or Panasonic. I have to give up use of the camera and exchange my understanding for the manufacturer’s expertise.

Early in 2016, I experienced some pain in my lower leg after a workout. I “diagnosed” myself with a slight Achilles tendon strain (I had a rupture years ago and knew the difference). I put ice on it, rested it, and later began to slowly stretch it (as I “learned” from an almighty Google search!) The pain persisted off and on, so I went to the doctor months(!)later. A specialist diagnosed it as a partially torn Achilles tendon. It was like strands of a rope that had been torn with remaining strands bearing the load. All my efforts only made it worse, especially stretching it.

My best help came from doing an exchange of my limited (and foolish) diagnosis for a real doctor’s diagnosis and treatment. For this injury, surgery was not needed. I had to take pressure off the tendon by wearing a special boot at home and dress boots with a high heel when away from home. The high heel relieved tension on the tendon.

When I exchanged my knowledge for the doctor’s knowledge, my situation changed. 

Is there any situation in your life that would benefit from the Great Exchange? Jesus is our Specialist! Don’t frustrate yourself or make matters worse by trying to sort things out all by yourself.

Like the old folks used to say, “Jesus is on the mainline, call Him up and tell Him what you want!”


Listen to my message from Sunday, March 12, “The Empowerment of Encouragement: The Great Exchange.”

Peace in the Middle of Your Storm: Resolving Conflicts | Firm Foundation Program #105

I am pleased to present another in a series of live and on-demand video programs called "Firm Foundation with Bryan Hudson." The programs feature Bible studies, conversations, productivity technology insights. 

Program #105 features a productivity technology insight on Google Voice, which is a free service that provide a telephone number, voicemail service, with many great features. The Bible Study is on the topic "Peace in the Middle of Your Stom: Overcoming Conflicts." (click on graphic below to view the program)

Jesus promises peace. Life brings storms such as conflicts in relationships and in our circumstances. The peace that Christ brings to your life is ¯ than the difficulties. Learn how to stay in peace even when you have to deal with people and resolve conflicts.

Proverbs 4:23, Keep your heart with all diligence, For out of it spring the issues of life.

Having peace in the middle of any of conflict begins with “keeping (guarding) your heart.” Conflict is not only the challenge of resolving interpersonal issues, it is also something that intends to degrade your inner peace.

The heart's central role in conflict is described in James 4:1-3. When you understand this passage, you will have found a key to preventing and resolving conflict.

"What causes fights and quarrels among you? Don't they come from your desires that battle within you? You want something but don't get it. You kill and covet, but you cannot have what you want. You quarrel and fight. You do not have, because you do not ask God. When you ask, you do not receive, because you ask with wrong motives, that you may spend what you get on your pleasures."

Most conflicts that are manifest in your circumstances began with conflicts within your own heart. Peace in your heart and peace in your circumstances are not the same. The first key to resolving conflict is to establish peace in your own heart and mind.

Romans 12:18, If it is possible, as much as depends on you, live peaceably with all men.

If you enjoy this program, visit www.FirmFoundationTV.net to view other programs and life-lifting content. If you are blessed and inspired by the content, I encourage you to Subscribe to this blog and consider making a donation to support this ministry.

How to Maximize Your Moments in Time

Eph. 5:15-17 (NKJV) See then that you walk circumspectly, not as fools but as wise, redeeming the time, because the days are evil. Therefore do not be unwise, but understand what the will of the Lord is.

Eph. 5:15-17 (NIV) Be very careful, then, how you live—not as unwise but as wise, making the most of every opportunity, because the days are evil. Therefore do not be foolish, but understand what the Lord’s will is.

Colossians 4:5, Be wise in the way you act toward outsiders; make the most of every opportunity.

Taking advantage of opportunity is the purpose of God’s gift of time. Living life on purpose is the reason for living. 

From Matthew Poole's Commentary: 
Redeeming the time; or, buying the opportunity: is a metaphor taken from merchants, that diligently observe the time for buying and selling, and easily part with their pleasure for gain. It is the idea of a merchant who, knowing the value of an article and the good use to which he can put it, buys it up. 

“Because the days are evil”: The days of life in general are so exposed to evil, as to make it necessary to make the most of the seasonable opportunity so long as it lasts.  These are days full of difficulties and dangers.

Through grace we seize the moments or opportunities ordained of God. Walk through the open door while it is open. Leonard Ravenhill wrote, “The opportunity of a lifetime must be seized in the lifetime of the opportunity.” 

Jesus seized opportunity by “setting his face” to become our Savior:
Luke 9:51, (NKJV) Now it came to pass, when the time had come for Him to be received up, that He steadfastly set His face to go to Jerusalem
Luke 9:51, (NLT) As the time drew near for him to ascend to heaven, Jesus resolutely set out for Jerusalem.  

Time is the overall framework. Moments present opportunities for taking action. We maximize opportunities by taking action. “Maximize” means: To increase to the greatest possible amount or degree; make the most of it. 

The time framework is like looking at a calendar. Moments are like selecting dates on the calendar to take action. Actions such as prayer, reading, studying, resting, working, meetings, writing, teaching, training, being trained, and every other fruitful thing you helps you maximize your time.

Here are some statements about time and opportunity to help develop a better mindset:

Time is a gift 
Time is holy 
Time cannot be replaced 
Time makes you realistic and practical 
Time reveals opportunity 
Time moves in one direction only 
You have less time than you realize 
Time is a non-renewable resource 
Time requires planning to be useful 
Time is a small slice within eternity to fulfill God’s purpose 
Times and seasons govern all activity
Time is a basis for good decisions 

Denzel Washington offered a poignant statement on the importance of seizing opportunity during an acceptance speech for an acting award.

He said, ”Ease is a greater threat to progress than hardship” and "Without commitment you'll never start, Without consistency you'll never finish." 

Why is ease a greater threat? Being at ease is about wasting time and failing to maximize moments by taking action. Hardship, while painful, usually causes us to take effective action. It is not that God is greater in times of hardship. It is more likely that we possess greater focus during times of hardship.

A key to progress: Number Your Days

Psalms 90:12,(NKJV)  So teach us to number [enumerate; mention one by one] our days, That we may gain a heart of wisdom. 
Psalms 90:12 (NLT) Teach us to make the most of our time, so that we may grow in wisdom. 

“Numbering” your days is not about counting days but making days count. Jesus knew he had only 3 1/2 years to fulfill His purpose after God commissioned Him. He said in  John 9:4, "I must work the works of Him who sent Me while it is day; the night is coming when no one can work.” He focused on seizing opportunity by taking action in moments of time.


Visit the Firm Foundation podcast to listen to my message, How to Maximize Your Moments in Time

Firm Foundation with Bryan Hudson Program #103 | Conversation with Pastor Shad Hill

Conversation with Pastor Shad Hill

PROGRAM CONTENT: Conversation about reaching diverse populations, intergenerational collaboration, dealing with pain in life, and mental health.

Previous programs, conversations, and teachings at www.firmfoundationtv.net