Lawless

Posted January 27th, 2018 by admin

I very much enjoyed reading an article on God & Natural Law this morning.  It comes at an interesting time.

Just yesterday, I was explaining to a friend, and last night to another friend, that even after so many years of deep faith, “growing in the Lord”, and experiencing miracles (yes, super-natural events that break or bend the natural laws), I STILL sometimes struggle with the notion of a PERSONAL GOD, who has a personality and cares about me.

There are three concepts here:

  1. The existence of God
  2. The difference between god as a force, or God as a person
  3. If God is a person, does he care for me individually, and interact with me personally.

(Jesus is a topic for another post.)

If it were allowable biblically, I’d place my hand on a Bible and swear that I have experienced that God exists, is a person, not a force, and that He cares for me individually.  The problem is, we are placed on a planet where the “god of this age” [Satan] is at work with his limited power to influence minds and hearts as we agree with the ideas that he and his agents introduce to us.

Forget “fake news”, remember “TMI”?  We are in the TMI age, and it seems that we have a natural tendency to get bored with “sound doctrine”.  Check out 2 Timothy 4:3, but also the cross-references on the right.

The point is, to be an overcomer, as described in Revelation, we need to be aware that the “powers” of darkness are battling for our mind.  To make us think less of God, less of Jesus, and more of ourselves.  Beware of the teachings and philosophies that will cause us to think of us as masters of our own fate.  When we worship (focus on) the fundamental laws (as described in the article referenced in the first sentence of this post) or on the secondary or tertiary laws that stem from the “transcendent truth”–and our ability to use, explain or manipulate them, we are merely worshiping the creation, not the Creator, which is idolatry.

Remember, “It is the glory of God to conceal a matter, But the glory of kings is to search out a matter.”  Make it your Honor to search out the “things”, and remember that God is glorified when we merely discover the “things” that he hid for us to discover and enjoy, and have a little moment with Him over the discovery, as it is our “glory” to do so.

Direct

Posted January 25th, 2018 by admin

Last week, as my family was trying to watch a sermon by Bill Johnson on YouTube, we kept watching that little “loading” circle appear every few minutes.  For some reason, the fact that this was happening during my family’s “God time” moved me to action.  It’s not like we hadn’t spent countless minutes–hours even–watching the buffer sign on Netflix, and even having our dinner music interrupted for the past 3 years.

The sick part is that I’m an IT professional, and I have the tools and even the box of wire, the crimpers, the mod plugs and the wall jacks IN MY TRUCK to do the job.  I had put the job off because I had to run a cable from my cable modem in my semi-detached FROG (for those of you in the North, that’s a Finished-Room-Over the-Garage) through a bit of roof that used to be a covered deck, and into the main house attic, and down through the wall to my entertainment center.  It seemed like a big job.  Bottom line is, when I finally got to it, it took me less than three hours… total.

Now we watch clear movies, listen to uninterrupted sermons and music, we don’t have to wait, lose our place, and stare awkwardly at each other while waiting for the medium to continue.

Why write about all that… and take up all your time?

Because it all has a deeply spiritual significance, as do many annoying and difficult things in our lives.

Imagine if you will, applying this to spiritual growth (this hit me in the shower this morning)…:

I have ample broadband, way more than needed to stream a HD video.  The Holy Spirit is always there – even right inside me, with all the information from God, the maker of all things.

I bought the best Wireless Access Point I could find 3 years ago, to cover a distance of only about 30 feet.  Too often, I rely on getting “the signal” through others.  Bill Johnson is great, as are Pete Cabrera, Tom Loud, Todd White, and countless others who have “discipled” me through my wireless signal.  I have even attended ministry schools, got ordained, serve regularly and have a “ministry”.  But out-dated good doesn’t hold a candle to the current best (listening directly to the Lord).

Reception was not the best.  On the receiving end, my Roku box is buried in a shelf, under a fish tank, behind the kitchen pots and pans…   Our souls are cluttered with activity, a to-do-list, demands of others, entertainment–all things that kill our “reception”.

I thought the job would be tough… and it was.  I had to take apart part of the eaves and drill through some walls and rafters.  I had to drill through the carpet on the office end, and belly-crawl through insulation on the other end.  It was itchy, nasty, and only a little bit risky, but with the help of the Holy Spirit and my daughter (both of whom I frequently enlist), the job went well, it was actually easier than expected (Providence), and the results are fantastic, making me wonder, “Why the hell didn’t I do this sooner?”

And there is is.   Because hell would have us settle for an indirect, weak signal, that casts a blurry and non-coherent message, all while having us believe that our current efforts are reasonable, and that the best is too hard to achieve.

I hear God using this event to challenge me to go the extra mile to obtain the direct signal.  Make the effort, remove the distractions, get alone… belly-crawl though uncomfortable circumstances if you must, but find and maintain that direct signal from the Lord.  It’s worth the effort.

Pre-Cancer

Posted December 12th, 2017 by admin

I am walking out a physical episode that I am sure has spiritual implications, so I am going to try to work them out here:

I have my medical needs covered by the VA, since I am a veteran, and have an adequate disability rating to get me benefits.  I have asked my primary doc at the VA to check my skin, and specifically some moles and a rough spot on my nose.  After being told I was fine last year, I still felt a push to see a dermatologist, and pushed hard an long enough to get a referral to a local doc.  They found pre-cancerous cells on my nose, and cut a tough piece of skin off my elbow, and cut off a mole from my back, which came back with a not-so-good report.  Today they went “deeper”, cutting out a section of flesh about half the size of my pinky… that’s the physical.

Now for the spiritual.

What does the nose correlate to?

The looking ahead, behind, going deeper, avoiding catastrophe..etc.  need to finish this later.

____________________________________

A good 3 weeks have passed, and it is coming into focus.  You need to read my post entitled “Out” to understand, go ahead, I’ll wait……

Cancer equals evil, in all its forms.  It starts unnoticed, some of it lies in our past (like on my back) and we don’t even see it in our day-to-day existence, but it is there, and left unchecked, it will infect and affect the entire body.  It takes another to see it, evaluate it and deal with it.

It also starts in plain sight (on my nose), even where the light has been the greatest!  It lurks under the surface, evidenced by a slight roughness and sensitivity.  It can be detected upon close examination with a mirror.

The elbow was a little different.  I picture the elbow is that part of the body that you jab your family member with when they are falling asleep in church.  Sometimes the roughness needs to be removed from that part of us, even if it is benign.

Is the “primary care” doc like our local pastor?  Who knows.  Maybe for you it is.  Be wary of other well-meaning believers telling you that your cancer is nothing to worry about.  Take matters into your own hands and seek out a specialist, go through the cutting out process, and live clean, always aware that the vulnerability will not go completely away until we see Him and are like Him, with our new bodies!

Out

Posted December 12th, 2017 by admin

I am in a season of “out”.

One of the questions that came up in my men’s group off a list of questions that accountability partners should ask each other, is “Do you feel that you are in the center of God’s will and sense His peace?” The answer, surprisingly is: “yes“.

Surprising, because I am outside church, outside politics, outside employment, outside religion, outside the burdensome concern of “am I pleasing to everyone?” (… and outside social media for the most part.)  I have even found myself on the outside of a business venture that I was in with my two best “friends”.

I find it easier to hear the voice of God when I am not so focused on all the other voices.  Having said that, the times (recently) when I intentionally seek God (spend time with Him alone, reading the Word, praying, and listening), I get silence… leaving me feeling “out”.  But the times when I serve others (being the Church), or lead them in times of doing the same, I hear Him clearly.  I hear Him along the way, showing me truths that might be secrets, and I am trying to learn when to act on what He shares with me, and when to (or if I should) take it in and use it as a point of intercessory prayer.  The former creates much more conflict.

I wrestle with the accusation of pride when I stick to what I believe–against the advice of some of my trusted advisers.  I examine my motive.  I have been in the season of dealing with the spirit of judgement, and I think I understand that judgement happens when pride looks and speaks.  Discernment happens quite by surprise, and when I speak, it appears to be judgement.

For those who know me, rest assured–while it is a human reaction (fleshly) to enjoy being right, that is NEVER my motive.  My intentional motivation is always truth and love, it’s just that sometimes the truth doesn’t feel like love, and I am working on my delivery when I believe in my heart that delivery is necessary.

I see society ditching truth and love for what they want.  And I see the church (overall, on average) ditching truth in the name of love.  There is an excellent article on the subject here, I just found it while searching for the scripture Reference of Romans 2:4.

Lord, help us find the balance of truth and love in a way that will honor You, and when possible to honor those who love you.

Anvil

Posted August 16th, 2017 by admin

Let’s see if I can remember this, it was a couple weeks ago.

Spirit-led men’s group in Jail is a whole lot different from showing up to “do a class”. I usually ask “who brought the goods” and give the guys a chance to share was God has spoken to them throughout the week. With very little volunteered, we had to pull out all the stops. We actually got quiet and asked God to speak to us–and for once, I got the Word!

God gave me a picture of an anvil.

First, there was a sense that I was the anvil.  Then I asked God, what’s going on here.  Then I saw the poor heated-up piece of iron that was getting beaten, purified and hammered into shape (through adversity) and quickly dismissed the idea that that might be me.  Then the picture zoomed out into the hammer, and God was the blacksmith asking the question:  “Are you willing to be any one of these?”

Sometimes, of course, you are the object being shaped and perfected, and it hurts.  But sometimes we are called to be the hammer– to deliver the blows that shape others.  Not always in a harsh and forceful way of course, because even delivering a timely truth can have the effect of a shaping force in someone’s life.

Sometimes, we are to passively be the platform where the shaping takes place.   I got the sense that the anvil’s function in my vision was that of an intercessory  saint who can keep his mouth shut, and be in the environment, but will provide the quiet support for the process.  Not needing to have “an important” part, but absolutely essential to the process.

Are you willing to be an anvil?

He Stinketh

Posted July 10th, 2017 by admin

I was reading out of the book of John today, as I am struggling to find the personable Jesus.  Not just the guy who spake in riddles and made people mad by telling them things they could not accept.  Today I found a man who gave every invitation, every demonstration for folks to see and know (not just hear) that He is of God, sent by Him, walks with Him, and is in “Him and He is in Him (that’s not a typo).

Jesus and his disciples had just left the region where Mary and Martha and Lazarus lived, and had nearly gotten killed.  The reaction by the pharisees was always divided, as some believed, and most continued to defend their religion and their lifestyle.  So when Jesus “gets word” that Lazarus was sick and intends to let him die, his reply was “…for the glory of God, that the Son of God might be glorified thereby”.  Is this not a picture of how we must die to be born again?

Jesus obviously had the big picture going on.  For the sake of those he was teaching, he patiently walked out the drama, and yet was fully engaged, to the point that he “groaned” and “wept” before raising Lazarus from the dead.  What does “groaned” mean?  I thought that it meant that he was speaking in tongues, as in Romans 8:26:

26 Likewise the Spirit also helpeth our infirmities: for we know not what we should pray for as we ought: but the Spirit itself maketh intercession for us with groanings which cannot be uttered.

Having looked into this passage in Romans, I come to the conclusion that it is the same (though not the same Greek word).

Here’s what Strongs says about how Jesus “groaned” when he was about to raise the dead:

to charge with earnest admonition, sternly to charge, threatened to enjoin

ἐμβριμάομαι embrimáomai, em-brim-ah’-om-ahee; from G1722 and βριμάομαι brimáomai (to snort with anger); to have indignation on, i.e. (transitively) to blame, (intransitively) to sigh with chagrin, (specially) to sternly enjoin:—straitly charge, groan, murmur against.

Jesus was indeed working up a good mad at the devil while speaking in tongues!  He was walking into battle, and it took effort, much like when he sweated blood in the garden before the crucifixion.  It’s interesting to me that having faith to know the outcome does not take the fight out of the process.

I always laugh when I read Thomas’ reply, “Let us also go, that we may die with him”  (I do notice that in my KJV, “him” is not capitalized, because Thomas does not yet now with whom he is traveling).  All those signs over three years of walking with Jesus and it still takes the death, resurrection, and putting his fingers in Jesus’ wounds before he declares, “Lord!”.

What will it take for us to truly understand and believe the one who walks with us, and lives in us?

We Are Soldiers

Posted May 29th, 2017 by admin

This was written by one of the inmates at the local jail:

 

WE ARE SOLDIERS

We are Soldiers in the Army of God.

The Lord Jesus Christ is our commanding officer.

The Bible is our code of conduct.

Faith, prayer and The Word of God are our weapons of war.

We are faithful, reliable, capable and dependable.

We have been taught by the Holy Spirit, trained by experience,

tried by adversity and tested by fire.

We are volunteers, enlisted for eternity.

We are not babies,  We don’t need to be pampered, pitied,

primed up, pumped up, picked up or pepped up.

No one has to write us, visit us, entice us, lure us,

or cater to us to remind us of these things.

We are Soldiers, not wimps.

We are in place saluting our King, obeying His orders,

praising His name and building His kingdom!

Our feelings can’t be discouraged enough to turn us away.  

We can’t lose enough to cause us to quit.

Wen Jesus called us into this army we had nothing.  

But with god to guide us we have everything.  

Our God supplies our needs.  

Devils can’t defeat us, people can;t dismay us,

weather can’t weary us, money can’t buy us,

death can’t destroy us and hell can’t burn us.

We are Soldiers marching heavenly bound, claiming victory as we go.

Here we stand!  Will you stand with us?

By CRAZ

Humor

Posted March 12th, 2017 by admin

I was in the car, making jokes…by myself, laughing after a slightly crude antic-dote (that I wouldn’t repeat in church).

I drove by a sign that said, “God doesn’t want you in church, he wants you in His presence.”

I was thinking, “I want to be in God’s presence all the time”, and “God, You’re here”, and He said “Yeah, I’m here” and in light of the joke that I just cracked, I said “Lord, do you ever… can you ‘lighten up’? Do you ever… can you find humor in sin?” and He said, “No.”

He said “If you had any idea of how dark the darkness is, you’d understand that there’s no excuse for it.  And if you knew how bright the light is, you’d understand that every bit of gray is only keeping you from the incredible goodness of everything godly.”

Although we find humor sometimes in things that are witty or sarcastic, sometimes might include profanity or making fun of something; wickedness is wickedness, and if we think it’s taking away joy to not laugh at wickedness, we don’t have an understanding of how joyful the light is designed to be.

_____________________

That was recorded in a voice memo while driving.  Here are some more thoughts on the subject:

Non-Christians think that being a Christian takes the fun out of life.  It is true that there is a transition process of letting go of our dark habits and learning to switch from “fun” to “joy”, but that’s not to say that we don’t have fun.  It’s FUN to pray for someone and see them freak out just a little bit because they got healed of a pain or condition that they have carried around for years.  It’s fun to hug people who are in tears of joy because they just received the encouragement or the reminder that God loves them and created them to be a son or daughter for His enjoyment… and ours.

It’s fun to have a group of believers worshiping God around a fire pit playing music and hearing from the Lord in a group setting.

Is your Christian life fun?  Are you stuck in gray humor?  As for me, I just became aware of it, so I have some work to do, but if you know who I am, I invite you to join me.  I am often having or seeking Kingdom fun, and would love your company.

 

 

 

Ocean

Posted March 9th, 2017 by admin

Yesterday, during a time of listening, I received a picture of the ocean.  For me it was Wrightsville beach as I often see it from my kayak half a mile out.

I noticed everyone playing in the shallows, and in the Spirit I heard the kingdom is like the ocean–the vast majority of believers only play in the shallows.  I then asked for more understanding.  I saw people fishing from boats and became aware that they are limited to one minuscule area of the ocean, as they put a line down to pull up one fish at a time.  Like so many of us who occasionally “go fishing” with our “quiet time” to pull up a truth from the depths… not unlike this article….

Then I saw fishing boats with nets;  the boats represented the church buildings, the captains pastors, and the fish and “shrimp” the people.  Fish and shrimp are collected and dragged back to the land (the often too-worldly environments of the organized church).  Nough-said.

Then I saw the vastness of the depths, with giant kelp forests, schools of huge and small fish, strange creatures large and small, and I understood that it was the spiritual world, a place largely undiscovered, rarely visited, and hidden (as though through a glass)…  I was quite taken by the beauty, and asked the Lord, “Why is there no ocean in Heaven?”  The reply: “The ocean is simply the physical representation on earth of the spiritual world in Heaven.  In Heaven, everything is accessible, the environment itself is the depths, the heights, the sunny valleys, the calm bays and pools.  The river of life flows for those who want water, and you can’t drown in it!”  When I think of the ocean, I think of fish (food).  God showed me that in Heaven, all the food is accessible, and you don’t have to fish or catch, or go in search of it, it is plentiful and readily available.

As a friend of mine pointed out, the oceans separate the masses.  There is no separation in Heaven.  All is known, all is right, all is accessible.  We will be submerged in the life giving substance that we are made of.

Other characteristics of the ocean or water:

  • It comes in three forms
  • It is the anti-fire
  • It refreshes, cools, invigorates
  • Without it, there is no real life.

I asked the Lord, “What about the tides?”  The reply:  The sun is the physical representation of the Son of God.  The moon is the physical representation of the “god of this age”, it is closer, only has dominion over this planet, and has the greatest “pull” on the planet.  So much so, that which ever side of the Earth is closest to the moon, the ocean bulges toward it.  The spirit world is pulled into it’s greatest concentration where evil abounds.  The ebb and flow of good and evil, while destabilizing, brings life and change and growth, just as the choice of sin, trials and temptations keep life in an unstable state, but are always providing opportunities for growth.

Crisis

Posted August 20th, 2016 by admin

Do you know someone who has experienced several trials, difficulties, sicknesses, etc., and they just can’t seem to “catch a break”?

Some folks have a genuinely difficult life–the waves of difficulty just keep on coming in, and they never seem to enter into rest.  Chances are, they have learned to view the world through “crisis lenses”.  I’m not sure what would inspire someone to do this, but I could guess:  Either they believe that they are not worthy of a good and blessed life, and therefore are always focusing on what they feel they deserve, or they have a savior complex, and think that the world needs their help.  In other words, if I am over-nurturing, have a need to rescue someone from their crisis, ignorance, or position, I will never be at peace because the world is full of circumstances and people who NEED my help.  If I need that to validate my existence, then I will always look for something or someone to fix, and see all that needs fixing.

Here are some insights from my own walk and understanding on the subjects of authority, breaking curses, binding and loosing, and the like:

Health:  You want health for your family?  Thank God DAILY for the health of yourself and every family member.  When they are sick, thank God for everything that is NOT wrong with them.

Worry:  Don’t do it.  It is not biblical.  Seriously.  It gives the enemy a very strong foothold.  Consider my post on hearing.  You will quickly understand that what we allow the carnal mind to focus on (the whiteboard), will become what we talk about, and then will become reality, or if we are lucky, will only steal the joy out of every waking moment until it doesn’t.

Wealth:  The Bible is clear about a couple of things:  Proverbs states and implies that a righteous man will have wealth.  There are also many warnings not to pursue wealth.  The greatest statement about priorities is here: “Seek first the Kingdom”  What does it look like to seek Kingdom principles in your relationships with your spouse, your kids, in your job, or in the way you conduct yourself daily?  Would that not produce many types of wealth?

Weather:  If you need good weather for an event, call my mom.  She will pray, you will have sunshine.  This usually works for me as well, but don’t call me.

Other not-so-small details [remember, the devil is in the details]:

Unforgiveness:  If you have it going on in your head or your heart, don’t expect anything to go right…. really.  Roots of unforgiveness need to be dealt with.  Two more thoughts about that: This one from my friend Anthony, and this famous quote that I last heard from my wife:  “Unforgiveness is like drinking poison expecting someone else to get sick.”

Gossip:  Take less time to talk about others, and more time to listen to God about what he wants you to spend all that time doing.  Gossip is evidence of…

Pride:  which comes before a fall, and causes God to oppose you!