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Ecclesiastes 3:5 “A time to cast away stones, and a time to gather stones; a time to embrace, and a time to refrain from embracing.”

“Being fruitful as followers of Jesus requires seasons of productivity and seasons of replenishment.  We can trust that God is at work no matter what season we’re in.”

Each season has a purpose and they all play an important part in our lives.  I’m sure we all would like to stay in some of the “feel good” seasons longer! It would also be nice to delete or skip the uncomfortable seasons.  Each season helps us in our growth. Trust God in every Season!

We have different fruit trees in our yard.  The Haas Avocado tree normally produces fruit in December and January.  After they’re all picked, we prune the tree.  It’s not long before you will see buds and new growth.  The baby avocados look like little green marbles and they may grow up to 3 pounds each by picking time. It takes months for them to grow to that size.  Over time, they take in nutrition and grow. When they’re ripe, we pick them.  After all are picked, we prune to prepare the tree for growth again.  The cycle continues.

Jesus came a part, from the crowds and his devoted disciples, to be alone with His Father. This was a time of replenishment for Him.  We also need to spend time with the Lord in sweet communion receiving from Him.  We are renewed, strengthened, and encouraged during these times of refreshing.

After we’ve received from the Lord, we are then able to share with others. It was never meant for us to keep Jesus to ourselves. When our cup is full and we’ve had sweet communion with the Lord, then we are ready to share what He’s given us with others. You can’t give what you don’t have.

It’s easy to get caught up in the busyness of life.  You can be pulled in so many directions that you feel like you’re Stretch Armstrong. There’s a time to say, “Yes,” and there’s a time to say, “No.”  There’s a time to be very active and fruitfully productive and other times to be less active and be rejuvenated.

Pray and ask the Lord where you need to serve and give to others; and where you need to slow down and be replenished.

“In the end, God brings growth.  No matter what our role, God works through us and in us.  Even in times when growth and fruitfulness seem impossible, God takes care of it.”

Psalms 1:1-3 “Blessed is the one who does not walk in step with the wicked or stand in the way that sinners take or sit in the company of mockers, but whose delight is in the law of the Lord, and who meditates on his law day and night.  That person is like a tree planted by streams of water, which yields its fruit in season and whose leaf does not wither-whatever they do prospers.”

Matthew 14:23 “After he had dismissed them, he went up on a mountainside by himself to pray.  Later that night, he was there alone,”

Mark 1:35 “Very early in the morning, while it was still dark, Jesus got up, left the house and went off to a solitary place, where he prayed.”

SONG: 10,000 Reasons (Bless the Lord) – Matt Redman https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DXDGE_lRI0E


Cindy Bice

Cindy Black Bice, Aloha Garden Bible Study

“TIMES OF REFRESHING” Garden Bible Study in Hawaii

Please contact me via my Facebook for more information:



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Ecclesiastes 3:4 “A time to weep, and a time to laugh; A time to mourn, and a time to dance.”

“Often when we face the challenging seasons in life we may forget that God is right there with us.  He promises to fill us with His grace, courage, strength, compassion, and love along the way.  As we journey toward becoming more and more like Christ, we find that our prayers become more powerful, our rest more rejuvenating, and our faith more rewarding.”

It seems like David was either having a mountain top experience praising God with his whole heart or he was in the valley of despair. The common thread I found in his life was no matter what, he continually turned to God.  He encouraged himself in the Lord.

We choose to bless God and with David we can say, “I will bless the Lord at all times:  his praise shall continually be in my mouth.” Psalm 34:1

You are not alone!  Even when facing death, you can be comforted in knowing God is with you! Psalms 23:4 “Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil:  for thou art with me; thy rod and thy staff they comfort me.”

When praise and worship is the last thing you feel like doing, go ahead and praise God!  Even if you have to tell yourself to bless the Lord like David.  Just do it!  Your focus will turn to the almighty God and your perspective will readjust itself in the midst of your praising God.

Psalm 103:1 “Bless the Lord, Oh my soul: and all that is within me, bless His holy name.”

Knowing your maker personally is imperative in having hope and courage in the bleakest of life’s situations!  Encourage yourself in the Lord and know that He is with you!

Psalm 42:11 “Why, my soul, are you downcast?  Why so disturbed within me?  Put your hope in God, for I will yet praise him, my Savior and my God.”

Psalm 62:6 “He alone is my rock and my salvation, my fortress where I will not be shaken.”

Whatever Season you may find yourself in, let God arise in your heart and in your life.  If you are facing painful loss, I pray the Lord comforts you with His Holy Spirit and gives you peace. Underneath are His everlasting arms.

Take comfort in knowing God is with you on mountaintops and in the valleys!

SONG: “His eye is on the Sparrow” Eclipse 6 https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lRhgD0UtpL4


Cindy Bice

Cindy Black Bice, Aloha Garden Bible Study

“TIMES OF REFRESHING” Garden Bible Study in Hawaii

Please contact me via my Facebook for more information:



Christmas 2015, When Hope Was Born



Pastor George W. Black

Confession: I am a victorious believer, redeemed by the Lord, washed from my sins in the blood of Jesus my Savior, saved by grace through faith, filled with the powerful Holy Spirit, poised for God’s eternal purposes, and boldly sharing the joy of God’s love, with my world.

I am a faith walking, Word talking, over-comer in this life. I am a Victor, not a victim. I can do, all things through Christ. Today, my mind is open and alert, and my heart is good soil, for the seed of God’s Word.  I will be a diligent disciple, to apply its’ truths, for from this day forward, by the miracle of spiritual growth, I will never, ever, be the same again.


 Luke 1:26-33 NKJV  “Now in the sixth month the angel Gabriel was sent by God to a city of Galilee named Nazareth, {27} to a virgin betrothed to a man whose name was Joseph, of the house of David. The virgin’s name was Mary. {28} And having come in, the angel said to her, “Rejoice, highly favored one, the Lord is with you; blessed are you among women!”

{29} But when she saw him, she was troubled at his saying, and considered what manner of greeting this was. {30} Then the angel said to her, “Do not be afraid, Mary, for you have found favor with God. {31} “And behold, you will conceive in your womb and bring forth a Son, and shall call His name JESUS. {32} “He will be great, and will be called the Son of the Highest; and the Lord God will give Him the throne of His father David. {33} “And He will reign over the house of Jacob forever, and of His kingdom there will be no end.””


  1. The birth of Jesus Christ brought real hope to a troubled world.

The coming of Jesus Christ was the fulfillment of a promise God made to the world about sending a Savior who would rescue us from sin. A promise always gives hope, and a fulfilled promise makes our hope a reality.

Mat 1:21 NKJV  “”And she will bring forth a Son, and you shall call His name JESUS, for He will save His people from their sins.””

As God is exalted to the right place in our lives, a thousand problems are solved all at once. ~ A. W. Tozer


  1. The human spirit needs hope to survive and to thrive.

Hope is a very timely topic.  George Gallup the public opinion pollster said, “People in many nations seem to be searching with new intensity for spiritual moorings these days.  Why is that?  One of the key factors prompting this search is a need for hope in these troubled times.”  The point I want to make is that the God of the Bible is that source of hope.

One expert said, “Since my early years as a physician I learned that taking away hope is for most people like pronouncing a death sentence.  Their already hard-pressed will to live can become paralyzed and they may give up and die.

The writers of the Bible recognized this more than 2500 years ago.  King Solomon wrote in Proverbs 13:12

Proverbs 13:12 “Hope deferred makes the heart sick, but a longing fulfilled is a tree of life.”

I love how the Good News Translation interprets this:

“When hope is crushed the heart is crushed.”  GNT


  1. When some people talk about hope, they are talking about wishful thinking, blind optimism, and ambitious dreams.

In everyday conversation we use the word “hope” in various different ways that aren’t really consistent to what the Bible refers to when it’s talking about hope.

A. Wishful Thinking

Wishful thinking is when we try to hope things in or out of existence.  We blow out the candles on our birthday cake and say, “I hope I have another year of health and happiness.”

Or we turn on the TV and say, “I hope the Dallas Cowboys repeat as NFL champions this year.”

Wishful thinking is that kind of hopeful feeling that somehow, some way things are going to go the way we want them to even though we have absolutely no power over the situation.

But we don’t have any power to make it happen.

Wishful thinking is not Biblical hope, because it has no power at all.

B. Blind Optimism

I think it’s great to be an optimistic person.  I tend to be an optimistic person but some optimists are not faith-based optimists, they are blind optimists, seeing everything through rose colored glasses.  They ignore their problems as if they didn’t exist, while their debt continues to grow, or their marriage continues to fade.

Sometimes people in their blind optimism will pretend things are great when they’re not.

That’s not biblical hope.

Blind optimism has no power at all.

C. Ambitious Dreams –

These are the lofty goals we tend to set right about this time of year, these resolutions before we go into the New Year.  We set a lofty goal.  We say, “Next year I’m going to buy a new car.”  And not only do we set this goal but we go about saving money and preparing so we can actually buy the new car.

Or we say, “Next year I’m really going to improve my golf game.”  And we don’t just say it but we go out to the practice green and the putting green and we really practice to try to improve.  Or we say, “Next year I really, want my marriage to be better.”  And instead of just saying it, we invest time to really build into our spouse to improve our communication and so forth.

All of that is fine.  It’s wonderful to set ambitious goals and then to work toward achieving them.  The problem is that often we are restricted by our own limitations or by things that are outside of our control.

I can shoot baskets on our driveway.  I can do that night and day but I will never realize my ambitious dream of playing in the NBA.  Or there are thousands of people employed by a certain company.  They have lofty goals.  They want to retire with a nest egg.  They want to climb the corporate ladder of achievement.  But what can happen? They can close down, sell out to another company, or downsize. Then good people are out of a job.  It’s beyond their control.

It wasn’t because their dreams were bad.  But sometimes our own limitations or circumstances or other people can affect our dreams in such a way that we end up disappointed or worse.

Ambitious dreams do not have the power of Biblical hope.

God has a better plan.


  1. God offers a hope that is so powerful that it can transform a human being’s life and it can rewrite a person’s eternity.

Rom 15:13 NKJV  “Now may the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace in believing, that you may abound in hope by the power of the Holy Spirit.”

It’s not surprising if God created human beings with this craving for hope it would make sense that He would also serve as our ultimate hope.  In fact, in Romans 15:13 it describes God as the God of hope.

All total there are 95 references to hope in the Old Testament.  There are another 85 references in the New Testament.  This theme of hope is woven all throughout scripture.

Contrast wishful thinking and blind optimism and ambitious dreams with Biblical hope.

For most people hoping is something that they do.  But the Bible talks about hope as something we can have.  See the difference?  Hope is something you can have.  You can possess it.  You can own it.  You can grab a hold of it.  For someone who follows Jesus Christ here is the definition of hope.

Hope is the confident expectation that God is willing and able to fulfill the promises that He has made to you.

The Bible refers to this as living hope because it is always directly linked to the resurrection of Jesus Christ.

1 Peter 1:4 CEB “You have been born anew into a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead. You have a pure and enduring inheritance that cannot perish—an inheritance that is presently kept safe in heaven for you.

Through His resurrection, Jesus Christ demonstrated once and for all beyond any doubt that He is God and that He really does possess the power to fulfill the promises that He makes to us.

Promises that He’ll change our lives, promises that He’ll guide us, promises that He will walk side by side with us through the turbulence of life, promises that He can cause good to emerge from the personal problems that we face, promises that He will grant us eternal life in heaven with Him.  The resurrection is an actual physical event in history that sealed Christ’s identity as being the God who loves us and who is committed to helping us.

Hebrews 6:19 “We have this hope as an anchor for the soul firm and secure.” 

Our hope is only as good as what it is attached to, as what it is anchored to.  Hope in and of itself has no power.  You can wish for something, you can hope for something, you might feel a little better about it.  We might fool ourselves into thinking everything’s ok.

But the only way hope has any real power is when it’s anchored in the God who has real power.  And not only real power but a real desire out of His love for you to help you.  Those who follow Jesus Christ hope in the confident expectation that God is willing and able to fulfill the promises He’s made to them.

There are two main reasons we have hope:

A. We have hope because we’re absolved of our past.

Lamentations 3:21 “This I call to mind and therefore I have hope: because of the Lord’s great love, we are not consumed, for His compassions never fail.  They are new every morning.”

1 Timothy 6:17 “Command those who are rich in this present world not to be arrogant nor to put their hope in wealth, which is so uncertain, but to put their hope in God, who richly provides us with everything for our enjoyment.”

B. We have hope because we’re assured of our future.

Titus 3:5,7 “He saved us in His mercy – not by virtue of any moral achievement of ours…  We are acquitted by His grace, and can look forward in hope to inheriting life eternal.”


  1. YOU NEED HOPE! The Christmas gift of hope can be born in you if you will surrender your life to Jesus Christ as the Lord and Savior of your life.

Mat 1:21 NKJV  “”And she will bring forth a Son, and you shall call His name JESUS, for He will save His people from their sins.””(Gal 4:4-5 NLT)  “But when the right time came, God sent his Son, born of a woman, subject to the law. {5} God sent him to buy freedom for us who were slaves to the law, so that he could adopt us as his very own children.”


Hope is born because Christ was born, and continues to born in every heart that makes room for Him.

Merry Christmas,




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Aloha Ladies,

Ecclesiastes 3:3 “A time to break down, and a time to build up.”

“We may have areas of our personal lives, work, relationships, finances, or life trajectory in which we need to stop, pause, and see if we’re still on track for what God has designed for us.”

New Years is the time most people think about making resolutions regarding changes.  We need to take time to reassess aspects in our lives both generally and specifically.  Every once and a while it’s good to stop and take a good look at your life and examine where you are, where you’ve been, and where you’re going.

As you reevaluate your life, ask the Lord if you need to make any changes. This requires us to seek God. Matthew 6:33, “But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well.” If you seek God with all your heart, you will find Him.  Jeremiah 29:13

God may have something new or different for you that’s so much better than you could have ever thought possible!

It also requires us to submit every area of our lives to God.

It’s good to know what Season you’re in.  It may be a time where you need to build up, expand, and start something new.  Or it may be a time where you need to break down and downsize.

Let’s look at the life of Gideon. He felt insignificant and was probably quite surprised when God had an angel sit with him under a tree announcing, “The Lord is with thee, thou mighty man of valor.”  God wanted Gideon to look at the situation through His eyes.  He had doubts and insecurities, but he listened to God and trusted God more than what he saw or how he felt!  He even downsized the army of Israelites before going to war.  He overcame fear by the Lord’s encouragement and in realizing God is sovereign. Gideon and his army of 300 defeated the large army of Midianites.  God gave them the victory! Judges 6, 7

“Knowing what season we’re in-a time to downsize or a time to expand-requires us to seek God.  The best way to reassess our lives is to prayerfully submit everything to God and live wide-eyed to the ways He answers.”

Song: “Who Am I” Casting Crowns https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VU_rTX23V7Q


Cindy Bice

Cindy Black Bice, Aloha Garden Bible Study

“TIMES OF REFRESHING” Garden Bible Study in Hawaii

Please contact me via my Facebook for more information:



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Ecclesiastes 3:3 “A TIME TO HEAL”

“God longs to bring healing and restoration in every area of our lives.  We can entrust ourselves to God as our Healer.”

We are spirit, soul, and body.  A physical surface wound may heal quickly.  A broken heart or emotional wound may take a very long time to heal.  God cares about minor and major wounds.  Whether you have a scraped knee or have just had open heart surgery, God cares about you!

My Aunt Lora’s marriage seemed like a fairy tale at the beginning.  She looked like a beautiful princess with her ivory skin and long dark hair.  Her beautiful voice was so incredible, that as a child I remember it brought tears to my eyes.  She married a brilliant, handsome man.  It looked like they were going to live happily ever after.  Little did they know their lives were about to change.

3 weeks after their marriage, they were in a horrific car accident.  It exploded almost instantly when another car hit them.  Her husband burned his hands and arms dragging my unconscious aunt out of the car.  Having 3’rd degree burns on her face and hands, my aunt suffered through years of horror, suffering, and pain.

Her life did not end there. Doctors told her she would never sing again. They said she would never play the piano again. When her life was at its darkest moment, God still had his hand on her and had a plan for her life.

While in the burn unit, my mom would visit and shared the Holy Spirit with her.  There was a small flicker of hope in all of her living nightmare.  Over months and years of surgeries, God began to heal her in her spirit, soul, and body.

To emphasize the degree of this, she was trained in singing and in theater.  She also trained other opera singers.  It was no easy task to live through this hellacious experience.  God is faithful!  He was with her through the fire.

In spite of what happened and what the Doctors said, to this day, my beautiful Aunt Lora plays the piano and sings to the glory of God.  She has a prophetic ministry and travels the world sharing Jesus in a powerful way!  She and her husband are living testimonies!  http://www.celebrationministries.com/

God gives hope to the hopeless.  He heals the broken hearted.  He’s with us through every storm we will ever face.  God is alive and is very real.  He wants us to know Him as our Healer.

If you don’t know Jesus personally, as your Savior, please accept Him and make Him Lord of your life today. Acts 4:12 “Salvation is found in no one else, for there is no other name under heaven given to mankind by which we must be saved.”

If you haven’t received the Baptism of the Holy Spirit, ask God to fill you today. Acts 2:4 “All of them were filled with the Holy Spirit and began to speak in other tongues as the Spirit enabled them.”

If you need healing in any part of your life, ask God to heal you today.  1 Peter 2:24 “Who his own self bore our sins in his own body on the tree, that we, being dead to sins, should live unto righteousness:  by whose stripes ye were healed.”

Song: Jeremy Camp – “Healing Hand of God” https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7psceANMWgw


Cindy Bice

Cindy Black Bice, Aloha Garden Bible Study

“TIMES OF REFRESHING” Garden Bible Study in Hawaii

Please contact me via my Facebook for more information:



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Ecclesiastes 3:2 “A time to plant, and a time to pluck what is planted.”

“Whether you’re a fan of change or one who tries to resist it at all costs, everyone inevitably faces seasons of transition in life.”

Some people love change with the excitement that comes with it!  Change can stress others out who prefer a regular routine.  How do you respond to change?

If you’re a mom, you know that you have to go through TRANSITION in having a baby.  It’s uncomfortable, but when the baby is born, you know it was well worth it!

There is a time for planting and uprooting.  We may be in a time of stability where we’re planted in a community and have a church home where we can be a part of what God is doing right where we are.  We also may be in a time of uprooting where we’re being transplanted and moving to another place and are going through all the changes that come with transition: new church, new job, new community.  God is with us at all times and Jesus is closer than a brother. Proverbs 18:24  F.R.O.G.  Fully Rely On God at all times!

My husband is a cutting edge type person and also a point man in life and ministry. He thrives amidst change and is continually looking forward to what’s next.  Whether living on the mainland or here in Hawaii, I’m a happy home body and I dislike change.  I continually commit whatever I face to the Lord and trust God in every area. We both love the Lord and desire all God wants to do in and through us in all our lives.  Because of our commitment to each other and to the Lord, we are able to trust God and walk through life’s very uncomfortable transitions together.

God is in control!  Committing your way to the Lord means you are giving God control.  In the good times and the bad, we need to trust God!

Genesis 47:1-12 Joseph was sold by his jealous brothers into slavery.  He was lied about by Potiphar’s wife and spent years in prison.  Joseph faced unfair challenges and went through many trying transitions.  God was with Joseph the whole time!  Joseph interpreted the King’s dreams and ended up saving his repentant family when famine came.  He was also appointed as Pharaoh’s right-hand man!

“Change isn’t easy for most people.  But rest assured that whenever you face a time of transition, God is with you.  He longs to see you flourish and to bring you to a more fruitful life in Him.”

Song: “Jesus, Take the Wheel” Carrie Underwood https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lydBPm2KRaU

Times of Refreshing Blog:  georgewblack.com


Cindy Bice

Cindy Black Bice, Aloha Garden Bible Study

“TIMES OF REFRESHING” Garden Bible Study in Hawaii

Please contact me via my Facebook for more information: