To say my ambition is dead sounds a little morbid. And an exaggeration. My dreams and visions have had time to reign in my life and for the most part those things had their day. I’ve accomplished things in my life–things that others haven’t; things to be proud of. But the effort to tame and steer those ferrel dreams has become too much for me. In my pursuit of them I’ve realized that my dreams and how I want them realized are akin to mirages. They seem to be great in the planning and development, but the fulfillment has left me feeling just as empty and dissatisfied as I did when they were unfulfilled.
It seems to me that many, if not all, of those dreams for my life and the people that I envisioned being in them were good and God given. Plans to help others, plans to nurture people and to lay down my life in the process. The thing is–when it comes to participating in God’s Kingdom only Christ’s dream can being fulfilled and it is meticulous and perfect. As much as we, in certain glimpses of time, try and capture the essence of how everything works by making estimations and conclusions, it’s only a matter of time before the proverbial kaleidoscope of time shifts and we find ourselves attempting to make sense of the absolute mayhem that ensued as a result of our decisions. From my estimation most people are in one of 2 stages: the figuring out and controlling stage, or in the stage of becoming aware of how random and seemingly untame this life really is. Continue reading “Progressive Surrender”
After listening to a sermon the other day I posted on Facebook a very strong opinion about how preachers should do their preaching. The specific preacher I was listening to at the time was circling round and round a point for what seemed way too long, never really saying much. Being entertaining, but not communicating the point he had set out to make. I was fed up, as I am with most preaching, and spoke my mind in public.
Most people loved what I had to say. Many people have never been on the underside of ministry like I have, nor have the perspective of church things like I do. And they seem to act giddy when someone is willing to speak the truth, even about the church.
The truth that I’ve found and that is central to my message to the Church is that Christ is the One who has earned ultimate authority over man kind and it is our job as the Church to point others unto the glory that is completely His. So that they may begin to walk uprightly with God through the life and presence of Jesus Christ… and in and amongst those who call themselves church.
Continue reading “Peeing in the Easter Basket”
People who live in an active pursuit of relationship with God may find themselves directly or indirectly associated with a set of doctrines, a denomination, or a sect. By proximity.
Yet the embrace of a religion, a set of beliefs, a sect …or a denomination does not necessarily put us in proximity of relationship with God.
Sometimes it does exactly the opposite.
Relationship with God must be the most central target of our spiritual unction. When that is primary God can and will take care of all the other minor details. As well as put us in harmony with the people He is calling us to love.
My friend Kelsey once introduced me to her dad as her pastor, a title I both love and hate. It’s a biblical term and one that I am called to. I love pastoring and shepherding people, helping them to get disentangled from the evil that seeks to entrap them. Much to my surprise, Kelsey told me after the fact that I had a funny facial expression when she introduced me. I had no idea at the time but I do know that I have a hard time hiding the way I’m feeling so it made sense.
My knee jerk reaction when that title was publicly awarded me has some association with what our culture interprets when they hear the word “pastor”. Nine times out of ten it isn’t good. The other ten percent seems to be a title that people give one another when they have ducked out of their responsibility to walk with God as individuals and rely upon others to represent God for them.
Continue reading “Not So Among You”
Where ever we’ve been.
Whatever sins we’ve committed,
however dirty and ashamed we’ve become
He still knows us and desires to be with us.
We must simply turn to Him.
It grieves me to report that from my estimation, from the US in the city with the most churches…
we have almost completely quit estimating our Christianity by spiritual means, discerning the presence of the Holy Spirit and the fruit therein, and we’ve exchanged it for our perceived “church” attendance.
For this is a result of a people who have chosen to separate themselves from the person of God and the sacrificial life that He has gifted to us.
We would rather have our ears tickled and be popular.
Rescue us from this deranged brokenness, Lord Jesus.
“Praise Jesus, I’ve been saved, sanctified, and filled with the Holy Ghost!”
Ever said this, or heard someone say something similar. There’s not a lot wrong with it, the intentions of it are pretty good. But, there’s a problem I want to point out… it’s all in the past tense.
See we have a tendency to live our life in God in the past tense and not in the present tense and in future tense. We base our eternal future destination by what we did in the past. For example, if you’re a Christian and you’re reading this you likely have a date that you were converted to the faith and “got saved”. Maybe you joined a church and got baptized. Those are all good things. But that is not where the story ends, nor what Christianity is all about.
Continue reading “Living in the Romance”