On the Roof!

It was going to be a hot one. The sun was shining with veer little wind. I was eighty feet up the air, blowing dust and debris off in preparation for what we had to do that day. The noise of the blower and my distance from everyone probably allowed me to feel free to start singing.

And this is the song that I sang.

At first, it struck me as strange to be singing the words, “Holy Spirit you are welcome here.” I wasn’t in church or at some youth rally. I was in Wheaton, Illinois on a roof. I was already dirty, sweaty, tired and a bit grumpy.

But maybe, just maybe, the Holy Spirit delights in being invited into our everyday, mundane, difficult times as much or more than those other times. Maybe, just maybe, He fills us, not just for emotional times when we are surrounded by are brothers and sisters in The Lord. Maybe, His presence is needed to a greater degree when we are surrounded by the world with its problems and issues.

All I know is that He showed up. God was there with me koan that roof and I couldn’t stop worshiping.

And it was good….so good!

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So You Want A Fight?

I’ve been watching, waiting, scanning. I sit in the corner with my back to the wall for a reason. Right now I can’t see them, but I can feel them. They are my heartbeat, my soul and you have decided to come against them.

Big mistake.

I’m old, used up by many standards. But I’m not dead. They are hurt and bruised. You have been hitting them long enough and I tell you now, you should have left them alone.

You may not realize it, but I am a warrior of the cross of Jesus Christ.

“Oh, my God, He will not delay. My Refuge and Strength, always.”

I call on the Almighty to protect, to provide, to lead and guide them. I pray to the Holy Spirit to pour out His provision on their lives. Your power over them is broken in Jesus name. They are set free, by the authority given me as their father, both spiritually and physically. I declare open doors for them, music and praise for them to sing, and truth and life to be spoken over them.

We ask for this for Your glory, Lord.

And satan, I call heaven and earth to come against you. Let their be confusion and destruction in your kingdoms of pornography, of divorce. I pray that the strongholds of fear and shame would be illuminated by the light of God’s love, His awesome, overwhelming love that doesn’t condemn but brings healing and restoration. I pray that marriages, for people who read this blog, would experience healing, experience unity and rest.

In the awesome, all powerful name of Jesus, the Messiah, the Great Physician, the Rider on the white horse. Amen!

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Turn or Burn

What a wonderful way to start a conversation with someone who doesn’t know Jesus.

The scene, 1977, a group of us are standing in line to see the movie “Star Wars”. We watch as an old, white, van flies across the parking lot. It screeches to a halt, the side door opens and a wild looking hippy emerges and yells, “turn or burn baby, turn or burn. You’re all going to hell.” The door slams closed and the van lurches into a turn, gravel flying.

I wasn’t a Christian at the time. Totally did not get what they were doing. It certainly was ineffective. It stands in my memory as an example of extreme, religious weirdness. But there is a deeper message for me in these wild antics.

A friend of mine recently had a similar experience at a concert. A Christian at a non-Christian concert hearing what appeared to be brothers in Jesus, yelling at the crowd. She was incensed at their horrible presentation of Jesus. The unloving, rude behavior of those who call themselves followers of our King.

What causes us to believe we will reach people by barging into their lives, throwing things verbally or otherwise, and then leaving? I think it is fear. Fear, self-protection gives us the mentality of guerrilla warfare. Hurt them before they can hurt you back, attack and hide.

And fear is what leaves us silent in the face of the opportunity that has been created.

At the movie so long ago, no one said a word. At the concert, people were angry, offended, embarrassed but said nothing.

We are commanded to, “speak the truth in love.”

Always…

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Everything to Lose…

Five hundred miles from home. The lure of the world surrounding, calling to you. What have you got to lose? An affair, pornography, gambling, one hit, one toke, who will ever know?

The married man or woman can only believe this lie partially. We know that, “what happens in Vegas,” doesn’t stay in Vegas. The secrets we keep from our spouse build walls that will divide us and kill us.

But what if you’re single? What if it is your first time away from home, you’re an adult, you’re legal? And for the sake of argument, let’s say God is not involved. I mean, really, He forgives you anyway. Shouldn’t we be allowed to have some fun, be a little crazy sometimes.

Understand, first and foremost, that these thoughts are not from freedom. They did not originate from someone who wants your good. They are not the voice of reason and common sense. They were bred in the will of rebellion from the father of lies, who wants only to steal, kill and destroy.

It is never enough. You can never be satisfied with porn. You will never say that getting hammered once was all you needed. Affairs! Gambling! Drugs! One time scares us so much that we just have to try one more.

And the end is ruin.

The life we’ve been given is such a gift. Our wives, husbands, children, finances, homes, churches, friends, everything He has given are too precious. We gain a life of addiction and shame, sorrow, bondage…

Seek freedom, real freedom that is only found in Jesus Christ.

Everything to lose but He can restore and heal, make your life new.

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Delighted by Love

hawkinsm6:

Such beautiful words! Hear them and know that God loves you. He loves you so much!

Originally posted on Forgiven and Loved:

I know the Song of Solomon is kind of joked about as the “taboo” book in the Bible, but when I hear people talk about it all I can remember is the deep, lasting encouragement and hope it has brought me so many times. I can always find a piece of “she” that I identify with, and then “he” responds and speaks such love over me.

I read it again this weekend, and I was smiling because it was real. I wasn’t just reading a book; me and Jesus were talking together, about what matters. It’s easy to get distracted by the little things. Many of them do matter, but so often I’m remembering them instead of the life-defining. I’m living as if they matter more than I know they do.

taken June 21, 2013 (by Sierra)I forget that I’m living a love story every step I walk.

We hear and remember that Jesus loves us, but every once in…

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What Are You Doing?

I’ve been traveling a lot lately, driving, flying in planes. So often, as I see people in their driveways, in cars beneath me, walking, riding, I find myself wondering.

See, to me, we were intended for lives of purpose.

I talked with my friend today. A hopelessness filled his voice, “I am just going to work until I die.” He doesn’t hope for great wealth, great accomplishment, a high calling.

In one sense, we are to be content with what God has given us. But God did not design us for mediocrity. He just didn’t.

He gave us imagination, creativity, artistry, intelligence. The world celebrates those who do great things, but too often only after they have nearly or completely died in their attempts. Most who dare, do so in the face of overwhelming adversity.

So do you see your groceries as a piece in the greater work of God? Do you see a purpose that goes beyond your imagination in rocking a child to sleep? Can you let your imagination run wild as you clean, as you swing the hammer, as you fight the good fight in your home?

True greatness will be judged by our King who sees so much more than we do. And, much of what is great has been built on the shoulders of those who just wanted to live, really live.

What you are doing May be determined by whether you see things as a mountain to climb or a crushing weight that will bury you.

Jesus said we should move mountains. He believes nothing can stand in our way. As I fix my eyes on Him, I believe it too.

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Do You Ever Wish…?

I don’t usually wish I was someone else. I can’t really remember wishing that in more than thirty years.

I’d like to play guitar like Brad Paisley or play baseball like Derek Jeter, but I still want it to be me.

My problem is that I wish someone else was me. Am I the only one?

See I walk around with my thoughts, my complacency, my apathy, the brokenness that is a part of my every moment. I find myself wishing that someone else had control of this body.

Someone else would exercise more and not have the chubby belly. Someone else would practice more and be so much better on guitar. Someone else would not have wasted all the potential that God put in me.

I’d like it to be that I just didn’t have a choice, a product of my heredity, my environment. I would like it to be someone else’s fault that I am who I am.

But then I hear the voice of God. “You are who you are because I have a special calling that only you can fill.” It makes me wonder whether we can waste our potential while we are still alive. We think of bad decisions or non-decisions as wasted potential. I think God looks at them as opportunities to recognize my potential. God doesn’t say, “you’re fifty! What a waste!” He calls to us and asks us to give our lives to Him. And anything we place in the hands of THE CREATOR can be made new, can be filled with promise, can have Holy Spirit power.

God gave me this life to live. Will I live it? Will I give it to Him?

I certainly don’t want somebody else having all the fun!

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