I’ve been hearing a lot lately about how we should pray for our enemies. Since the Bible is the ultimate fact-checker, I thought I would share a few scriptures to put a Christians position on this subject in perspective.

I believe it when the Bible says we should pray for our enemies. I also believe it when it says we should mark them that cause division. Proverbs teach us that there are seven things that God hates, and the final one is those who sow discord among brothers. Maybe that’s another reason why we should “WATCH AND PRAY.”

Matthew 5:44 But I say, love your enemies! Pray for those who persecute you!

Romans 16:17 Now I beseech you, brethren, mark them which cause divisions and offenses contrary to the doctrine which ye have learned; and avoid them.

Proverbs 16:19 a false witness who breathes out lies, and one who sows discord among brothers.


Today, our Church begins, what we’re calling “21 DAYS OF FOCUS.” The definition of focus is to bring something to the center of attention. It also means, having clear vision. I’ve heard a lot about 2020 being the year of vision, and I love that, but what good is a vision without focus? We don’t just need vision; we need a clear vision. We have to make sure we have the right things at the center of attention. So, for the next 21 days, that’s exactly what we’re going to do. In fact, it’s going to be a year of focus for us. We all get busy with other things in life, and before you know it, certain things start becoming blurry and out of focus. Here is a list of some things that we are bringing to the center of attention.

RELATIONSHIPS (Marriage, family, and friendships)
MISSION AND EVANGELISM (Reaching out to the lost and hurting)

You are more than welcome to go on this journey with us. If you are a part of a Church that is doing something similar to this, that is great, and I am praying for you and your Church. Let’s set the pace for 2020 by joining together in unity and focusing on things that might have become blurry in our lives.


The need for prayer has never been more imperative than now. I’m not talking about a few words spoken in passing; I mean God’s people lifting up their voices with all their might with the purpose of a complete breakthrough. The church is under attack, our marriages and families are being targeted, and the enemy is not letting up at all. The attack on our Nation is not from another country, but rather from the kingdom of darkness. There is a war going on, and we must not neglect the weapons we have to engage in it.

Before you call it quits on your marriage, tell me how many hours you’ve invested trying to save it. Maybe you’ve stayed up all night worrying about a particular problem, but have you prayed during the night for victory? I would encourage you that the bigger your situation is, the harder you need to pray. There is nothing you can get through until you pray through. Your perspective will change, your passion will be revived, and you’ll feel a fresh anointing when you pray. It’s not a suggestion; it’s a necessity.


Hang around people who are cheering you on to keep going. You don’t need anyone in your life that can’t look beyond your mistakes. Your past should be something you learn from, not what keeps you from moving forward. 

Don’t let your mess up keep you from getting up. You have to be careful with not only how you spend your time, but who you spend it with as well. Not everyone who says they love you, really understand the true meaning of the word. Let me remind you in The Message Bible Translation, what it is.


I Corinthians 13:7 THE MESSAGE

Love never gives up.

Love cares more for others than for self.

Love doesn’t want what it doesn’t have.

Love doesn’t strut,

Doesn’t have a swelled head,

Doesn’t force itself on others,

Isn’t always “me first,”

Doesn’t fly off the handle,

Doesn’t keep score of the sins of others,

Doesn’t revel when others grovel,

Takes pleasure in the flowering of truth,

Puts up with anything,

Trusts God always,

Always looks for the best,

Never looks back,

But keeps going to the end.


Make sure you’re with people and family who genuinely love you.


It’s been one year today since my mom passed away. I have had so many emotions the past few days; it’s hard to put into words all that I’m feeling. Life changes so much when both of your parents are gone because you can’t think about one, without thinking of the other one. Since it’s Thanksgiving week, I’ll have to say; I am truly thankful for all of the great memories I had with my mom. That’s all you have once they’re gone. The good times, the challenging ones, and the journey from being a kid to an adult that a mom holds your hand through.

As difficult as today is, I don’t know what I would do without my wife and kids. They are the joy of my life. I can never thank the Lord enough for the amazing family He’s blessed me with. We will spend this day and week, being thankful, and being together. I know the Lord probably didn’t do this, but it’s going to be sunny and 65 degrees today. Do you know what that means? Alonna and I are going to spend the day on my Harley-Davidson Road-Glide Ultra. We’re going to make some memories and deal with today by being outside and enjoying the weather.

It’s going to rain tomorrow and transition into the winter season, so today, we’ll enjoy the sunshine. That’s kind of a picture of life. The rain is coming, and the winter of life will happen to all of us. So while the sun is shining, enjoy the moment.

To all of my friends and family, I love you all, and I hope you have a wonderful Thanksgiving week.


I think something is wrong with my phone. The clock is all messed up. I have to figure out what is going on with my calendar because so many things just happened yesterday. Today, my wife and I are suppose to watch our youngest daughter graduate from elementary school. That can’t be…I just registered her for kindergarten yesterday, in fact, she just learned to walk and ride a bike. What in the world is going on? She’s nine, but getting ready to turn ten and yesterday we were celebrating her first birthday.

The camera is all ready and we are going to watch her receive some awards today, but I’m in such a state of confusion about this time warp. There is no way this can all be happening with everything we saw her do just yesterday. Did all of this really happen in just the blink of an eye? Did we really go from watching her writing abc’s to pre-algebra overnight? It seems like we just got though celebrating her staying inside the lines when she colors a picture. Another crazy thing that doesn’t make any sense is there will be two numbers on her birthday cake. That can’t be…I just bought the number two for her last birthday and that was yesterday.

If you read this, maybe you could help me understand what is happening. Perhaps you’re a parent and you’ve figured this out, because our baby girl is the last of five and I don’t how it can be the date my calendar says it is. I look at her fourth grade school picture and don’t understand. I just ordered her kindergarten pictures yesterday! Don’t get me wrong, she is a beautiful little girl, but when did she start fitting into those size clothes? The clothes my wife just bought her yesterday all had a T on them.

Well, I can’t just stay here and worry about how we got to this moment so fast, I don’t want to miss the present trying to figure out what happened to the past. Her mom and I will watch her accept her awards and even get to hear her sing. We will smile with all kinds of pride as that little brown haired, blue eyed girl scans the audience to make sure we can see her perform. As soon as she spots us, she will put on a great big smile, but we will smile even bigger as she performs her last kindergarten song…wait a minute, it’s her last fourth grade performance, kindergarten was yesterday.

We have seen four of our kids graduate from Andrew Jackson Elementary School. All the teaches know us by name and many of them have taught one of our kids. In fact, MaKendra’s teacher was also Brooklyn’s teacher a few years ago. Actually, I’m not sure that’s right. That was just yesterday. This is crazy!!! It will be an emotional day because MaKendra is the last of our kids. Once we walk out of the school today, we will never walk back in to take any of our kids to class. The calendar says we’ve spent the last ten years bringing our kids to that school, but how can that be? We just registered our first two there yesterday!

While I can’t figure out what all has happened to the years gone by, I guess the next thing that concerns me is what will things look like tomorrow? Cherish every single day because they fly by as fast as it takes you to browse through a photo album and then you too will be saying…. “Wasn’t that just Yesterday?”


Another Christmas season has come and gone and now it’s time to get ready for a new year. We’ve listened to all of our favorite Holiday tunes and watched all kinds of Christmas movies for several weeks. But now it’s time to get out all of those green, red and clear tote boxes and start the breaking down process and store everything until this time next year. WAIT! HOLD ON! I want to tell you something before you take down the Christmas tree. I know you’re anxious to pack everything up, but keep the lights shining on the tree for just another moment.

The Christmas season is such a special time of the year and as soon as the tree is taken down, it will all be over. So, before you do that, take a minute and remember some things about this year that were so wonderful.

Before you take it down, do you remember the day you put it up? What inspired you to get the tree out and start decorating? Maybe it was your child’s first Christmas and you couldn’t wait to see how they would react to all of the lights. If you’re like us, then one of your kids started bringing stuff out of the garage, without your knowledge, and just began to put it up. Oh it was a mess for a little while, but do you remember once it was finally complete and your house, no matter how big or small, looked like a beautiful Christmas village.

Before you take down the tree, don’t forget the look on the faces of everyone when they opened their gifts. That priceless smile and those eyes lighting up as your child screams…”THAT’S WHAT I WANTED”!!! They run and hug you and say “THANK YOU”!!! All of a sudden, nothing else matters. As parents start putting all of the wrapping paper in trash bags, the kids start putting on their new pajamas and start playing with everything they just opened. Nerf darts start flying through the air. The sound of war is coming from one of the bedrooms as your son is on a “Call Of Duty” and is part of the special “Black Ops”. While one kid is playing a new guitar, another one is putting those new hot curlers in her hair. Oh it’s quite a scene and whatever you do, cherish those memories.

Before you take down the tree, remember your kids are another year older and they may not ask for the same kind of presents next year. In fact, your son or daughter can change so much in just one year. You could be buying clothes this year and looking at a car for them next year. Hold on to the memories of who they are now, because it doesn’t last long enough. Store the memories and the year this Christmas season represents. Next year they will be taller, they will even sound different and for some, your baby boy or baby girl will be in college. What did you all do this past year? Where did you go on vacation? What was the birthday themes? These things are important to think about before you take down the tree.

Take some time to be thankful for the family members you still have in your life. A parent or grandparent can go through a lot of changes in just a year. As I’m writing this blog, I’m looking at our Christmas tree and remembering my grandmother, who has had a difficult year. Time and age is taking her mind, but I remember just a few months ago when she was herself and we had some great conversations. I’m not sure what this next year will bring, but I’m thankful for the memories I have of her this year.

My wife and I are so blessed to have wonderful parents that we are extremely close to. Although this has been a very challenging year for both sets, we have made some awesome memories together. I not only enjoy the memories I have with them, but some of my favorite ones are how much my kids love being around them. It makes me so happy to see how excited they get when they find out Nana and Papaw Dean or Mamaw Joyce and Papaw Spencer are coming to town. They’ve had a great year of memories with them this year.

Last, but not least, before you take down the tree, take a moment and remember how much emphasis is placed on Jesus during this season. Movies, songs and plays all promote His birth. During the Christmas season, it’s mentioned everyday. Isn’t it amazing how things go better when Jesus is at the center of everything? Maybe while you’re taking down your decorations, when you get to the nativity scene, pause for a moment and commit to telling this story over and over again throughout the next year. Don’t wait until you unpack a Christmas box to think about the birth of Jesus.

Oh, there is one more thing. If you suffered the loss of someone that you loved this past year, I’d like to remind you of something. When we celebrate Christmas, we’re not just celebrating the birth of Jesus, but we are celebrating His life, His death and His resurrection. The reason Jesus came was so He could save us from our sins and one day bring us to where He is. On Christmas we rejoice because He came to us, but there will come a day when we go to Him. Just imagine how incredible that day is going to be when we see our loved ones and we behold the Lamb of God that died for our sins. That’s right…go ahead and think about that for a moment, BEFORE YOU TAKE DOWN THE TREE.


For the last couple of weeks, I’ve been writing about struggles that all married couples face. I have stated repeatedly, that for a marriage to be successful, you have to fight for it. I believe, next to our relationship with Jesus, there is no relationship more important than marriage. That’s why this blog series is called, “SOMETHING WORTH FIGHTING FOR”!!! With that being said, let’s get ready for round 3.

I had the privilege of going to an Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC ) event this past week. They refer to it as Mixed Martial Arts (MMA). It is a full-contact combat sport that allows the use of both striking and grappling techniques, both standing and on the ground, from a variety of other combat sports and martial arts. Because of the variety of different fighting styles, it’s a very exciting and high energy sport. We were sitting very close to the ring and could hear every punch and kick. We could see the intensity on the faces of the fighters when they were on the mat fighting to win. We also witnessed different ones getting cut and bleeding. I wasn’t crazy about that part…lol. Nevertheless, it was an incredible night and one I’ll never forget.

As I was writing today, I couldn’t help but think about that night. Since my blog series is about fighting, I began to notice some interesting comparisons in what I saw then and what I see in some marriages today. I watched several fights for over six hours and honestly, the fighters that stood out to me, were the ones that had the strength to come back and win after being knocked down. It was the ones that were pinned against the cage or pressed against the mat in a hold that seemed impossible to get out of. In the UFC, when a fighter can’t get loose, he will do what’s called, “Tapping Out”. That’s when he takes one of his hands and starts tapping. That signals the referee and says, I’m out and can’t take anymore. The referee can also call the fight if he feels like one fighter isn’t able to fight back.

When you see a fighter down and everyone thinks it’s over, but then he or she somehow gathers enough strength to slip out of a hold and turn around and win…my friend, that’s someone that believes they have something worth fighting for. It doesn’t matter how many punches you can throw, the true test is how many you can take. How well a fighter can recover after making a mistake, says so much about their ability and character. Even the most talented make errors, but what makes them great is their desire to not give up. When a fighter refuses to surrender, they call that, “HAVING HEART”. The great ones have heart. They don’t sit out because of a set back, they actually stand out when it would be easier to give out.

It’s the same in a marriage. You don’t gage it by not making mistakes, but rather by how well you recover after an error is made. It doesn’t matter who you are, you are going to make a mistake. You are not perfect and the day will come when you will make a mistake. Your marriage will be pinned against the cage or pressed against the mat and it will be hard to see your way because of the hold your in. It’s in times like this that will determine if you have a good marriage or a great one. Sure, you could tap out and say I’m done. However, the real fighters don’t quit that easy. The ones with heart assess their situation and figure a way out, not a way to surrender. They’ve saved enough strength for a comeback. They combine strength and will, then make their move. All of a sudden, what seemed impossible starts to change. The one on the mat is now the one in control of the fight. Just seconds ago, what looked to be hopeless is now victorious. All because somebody realized they had “SOMETHING WORTH FIGHTING FOR”!!!

So what about you? Is your marriage on the ropes? Has a mistake been made? Are the financial struggles causing you and your spouse to want to give up? Are you facing something that you thought you would never have to deal with? If you’re not going through a difficult time, then the blog ended at the last paragraph, but if your marriage is in some incredible hold and you can’t seem to get free, you are who I want to encourage. Instead of surrendering and becoming another divorce statistic, why don’t you prepare for a comeback? I’m sure everyone watching thinks it’s about over, so why don’t you shock the crowd and show them how much heart you really have. I think you’ve got enough strength to turn this fight around. I’m not saying it’s going to be easy, but I am saying that great ones find a way to recover.

Here are some tips for preparing your comeback.

  • Make sure God is first in your life. (You cannot do this without Him).
  • Be faithful to church.
  • Seek council from someone that understands what is trying to defeat you.
  • Prepare for patience. (This problem didn’t happen overnight and it won’t end that soon either).
  • If someone made a mistake, understand that your spouse will need healing even after an apology.
  • Commit to not using words that cause a setback. (Make a list of digressive words and progressive words).
  • If you have children, make them aware that you are fighting for your family. (Don’t think they don’t feel the tension).
  • Make time for each other. (Hiding under a work load will not help the situation).
  • Remind each other daily that you believe your marriage is SOMETHING WORTH FIGHTING FOR!!!

If you have a comeback story, I would love for you to share it with me.

If your marriage is in need of prayer, I would love to hear from you too, so I could help pray for your marriage.

Email me at: denny@dennylivingston.com


I wrote a blog last week entitled, “SOMETHING WORTH FIGHTING FOR”. It was about marriage and family and how the only way it’s going to last is if we fight for what we have. I received a lot of response from that blog, so I decided to use the same title and continue to write some more things on this subject. Since last week I’ve heard stories of victory, but I’ve also heard the stories of defeat. Some are fighting, while others have decided to throw in the towel. Hopefully what I’m writing will help someone stand up and fight. Your marriage and family are worth fighting for.

When God created the first man and then made the woman for that man, He referred to her as Adam’s help meet. In other words, God gave that man talents and abilities to do many things, but he wouldn’t be able to do everything, so God gave him someone that would help him. It was important for them to know who they were individually, which in turn, would help them discover who they were together. Their united strength would come from their separate talents and abilities.

They were certainly opposite from each other, but that didn’t mean they looked at each other as opposition. God didn’t want them to be the same or look the same. The Creator designed them to be different. Their differences however, was not to make either one of them feel superior or more important than the other one. They were to recognize the contrast, but combine who they were to make one great marriage and family. That was the only way the two of them could become one.

As I council marriages and families, many times I find couples that see each others talents as competition. Instead of recognizing the importance of putting their abilities together, they choose to compete with one another for who is better at certain things. I’ve even seen husbands that were jealous of their wive’s talents as well as wives feeling the same way about their husbands. Instead of promoting and combining, they choose to compete and sometimes even intimidate each other with abilities. Each has be given specific gifts and also the potential of progressing and the enemy is using this to bring separation among so many marriages.

Your individual strengths are designed to make you better. It doesn’t make you less of a man or woman when you acknowledge that your spouse has certain talents that you do not have. In fact, I believe it will make you a much wiser man or woman. You cannot do everything and you’re not suppose to, the plan is for you to help each other become better together. However, you’ll never get there as long as you view one another as competition instead of completion.

Instead of me making a list of the different talents and gifts that men and women have, I want to issue a challenge. You spend some time writing down your spouse’s strengths and talents. What is it about them that makes them unique in what they do. Think of how you two are alike in many ways, but also how you are different in others. You see, I believe it is in the contrast where we discover incredible ability. You have to know who you are individually in order to develop an amazing combination. It’s important that you work on fusion, not confusion.

We weren’t made to compete with each other, we were made to complete each other. Our fight must be to work together, not fight every time we do work together. Know when it’s time for each one to take the lead. Recognize who should take care of the checkbook and who should make certain phone calls. Learn to compliment your differences. You’ll actually become better at what you do individually when you encourage one another’s talents. What God has joined together, don’t let competition pull apart.

Ok couples…let the fighting for your marriage begin!!!


I woke up this morning with several thoughts racing through my mind. One of the things that kept coming to me was, there are some things in life that are worth fighting for. In fact, there are some things that will require a fight if you’re going to keep it. I can name a few, but I would like to focus on one very important subject that demands our attention and action. I’m talking about marriage and the fight to keep families together.

We have been told that love is a verb, which means it shows action. For a marriage to last, husbands and wives must fight to keep their marriage active. Too many times, in a marriage, couples get busy with making a living and fail to see that their marriage is struggling to survive. You may not feel like talking when you get home from work, but that’s when you have to fight for your marriage and talk anyway. Life will drain you and leave you exhausted, but that’s when the true warriors show up and fight for what matters most.

With our technology today, there is no reason you can’t be reminded to text something kind to one another throughout the day. Tell Siri this morning, “Siri, remind me at 1:00 to text me wife that I love her”. She will say, “Ok, I’ll remind you” and your wife will say, “Awe, I love you too”. Come on guys, how difficult is that? I’m talking about fighting for the most important relationship on earth, next to serving Jesus Christ. You’d be amazed at the small things that can make such a big difference in your marriage.

Fighting for our love also means we find what makes each other happy. One of my favorite books on marriage is “The 5 Love Languages” by Dr Gary Chapman. In this book, Dr Chapman explains that there are five major things that make all of us feel loved. We don’t all speak the same love language. It’s important that we learn each others language, so we can make each other feel loved. When a spouse doesn’t feel loved, after a while, it becomes very difficult to show love. When love becomes inactive and the relationship is treated more like a job, it doesn’t take long for things to start falling apart. I wish I had time to talk more about this, but just know it’s imperative that you love each other and also fight to make sure both of you feel loved.

You have to fight temptation. This is for men and women. I looked up some statistics this morning to find out who is more likely to cheat in a marriage. Is it men? Is it women? I found the results very interesting. It’s pretty well even, although in the past, it’s been mainly men. However, with women climbing the corporate ladder and being so successful, they are not as dependent on a man, so the numbers are more even now. This means both are going to have to fight against temptation, because you are equally a target.

You’re not fighting when your flirting with someone other than your spouse.
You’re not fighting when you’re visiting pornographic websites.
You’re not fighting when you’re responding to inappropriate texts.
You’re not fighting when you’re dressing immodest…intentionally.
You’re not fighting when you’re looking at the backside of the opposite sex as they walk by.

There are a lot more things I could say, but I think you understand what I’m talking about. It’s not easy and you are both going to be targeted by the enemy constantly. We live in a wicked world and things are getting worse daily. Adultery has now become something very common. The world looks at it as something that is just going to happen. I’ve even heard some people say that it was healthy for their marriage. Let me make this perfectly clear. An affair only happens when someone stops fighting for their marriage. Real men love their wives and fight with everything in them to stand and stay by their side. Strong women love their husbands and remain true to them and the vows they spoke to each other on their wedding day.

Don’t get me wrong, I know that mistakes happen and sometimes good people mess up. None of us are perfect, but I’m sure, the marriages that have survived these kind of setbacks will admit, someone was weak and gave in to temptation. If you’re reading this and your marriage has gone through a trying time, let me say this to you, “FORGIVE, FORGET AND FIGHT”. If you decide to stay together and work on your marriage, those three things are essential. It’s hard to fight for the future if your spouse keeps throwing up your past. You can’t move forward focusing on the mistakes of the past. I wish I had time to dwell more on this subject.

I don’t have time to cover them all, but one more way of fighting for your marriage is in self-evaluation. Have you looked at yourself to see if you need to make any improvements? We tend to play the blame game, but the truth is, fighting sometimes requires taking a good look at yourself. You might ask, how do I evaluate my self as a husband or wife? One of the ways you can do this is read more books on the subject of marriage. Since men and women are nothing alike, it’s important that we learn more about the sexy, strange creature we married and now are suppose to live with until the day we die.

As you learn more about your spouse, you may actually discover more about how you need to improve. I would suggest creating a check-list for yourself. Ask yourself the difficult questions. Are you meeting the needs of your spouse? If you’re going to fight for your marriage, are you willing to become a better husband or wife? What does she need that I’m not giving her right now? What is he wanting that I’ve not been providing? The list goes on and on, but I promise that self-evaluation and honesty will make a major difference in your marriage.

I’m not able to write everything that I want to say about this subject in one blog, but I’m going to come back to it from time to time. I just feel so strongly about making couples aware of how important it is for them to fight for their marriage. For starters, after you read this blog, schedule a date night with your spouse. Go somewhere nice and dress for the occasion. Guys, make sure you wow her like you did when you first got together. Ladies, you know we are pretty simple, so it won’t take much to make his mouth water. Enjoy the night and reschedule another date night asap.

Alright couples, let the fighting for your marriage begin!!!