Tuesday, April 23, 2013


Sometimes shortly after we gain a victory we notice that maybe some of the things that were overcome aren't quite dead yet and start trying to raise their ugly heads even though they have been crushed underfoot. You see this over and over again following retreats and conferences and revival meetings. It always seems like there are some that have great testimonies about what God did and how they were changed but a few weeks later they are back doing whatever it was they were set free from.  And then discouragement creeps in and whispers doubt and lies that victory can never be obtained that we are stuck where are and can never move forward. These are lies from the pit of hell. Part of the problem is that the people have been trained for a sprint but the are running a marathon. Our discipleship is falling short because we aren't showing how to maintain a long term healthy deeper relationship with Abba that is the true source of our sustained victory. If our leaders cannot encourage themselves in the Lord as David did, how can we expect the people they are leading to stand firm too?
Ephesians 6:10-13 "In conclusion, be strong in the Lord [be empowered through your union with Him]; draw your strength from Him [that strength which His boundless might provides]. Put on God’s whole armor [the armor of a heavy-armed soldier which God supplies], that you may be able successfully to stand up against [all] the strategies and the deceits of the devil. For we are not wrestling with flesh and blood [contending only with physical opponents], but against the despotisms, against the powers, against [the master spirits who are] the world rulers of this present darkness, against the spirit forces of wickedness in the heavenly (supernatural) sphere. Therefore put on God’s complete armor, that you may be able to  resist and stand your ground on the evil day [of danger], and, having done all [the crisis demands], to stand [firmly in your place]."

Friday, April 19, 2013

blessed are....

I love the Beatitudes especially in the Amplified version. Here are a few of them. Happy Friday !!!
Matthew 5:5-10 "Blessed (happy, blithesome, joyous, spiritually prosperous--with life-joy and satisfaction in God’s favor and salvation, regardless of their outward conditions) are the meek (the mild, patient, long-suffering), for they shall inherit the earth! Blessed and fortunate and happy and spiritually prosperous (in that state in which the born-again child of God enjoys His favor and salvation) are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness (uprightness and right standing with God), for they shall be completely satisfied! Blessed (happy, to be envied, and spiritually prosperous--with life-joy and satisfaction in God’s favor and salvation, regardless of their outward conditions) are the merciful, for they shall obtain mercy! Blessed (happy, enviably fortunate, and spiritually prosperous--possessing the happiness produced by the experience of God’s favor and  especially conditioned by the revelation of His grace, regardless of their outward conditions) are the pure in heart, for they shall see God! Blessed (enjoying enviable happiness, spiritually prosperous--with life-joy and satisfaction in God’s favor and salvation, regardless of their outward conditions) are the makers and maintainers of peace, for they shall be called the sons of God! Blessed and happy and enviably fortunate and spiritually prosperous (in the state in which the born-again child of God enjoys and finds satisfaction in God’s favor and salvation, regardless of his outward conditions) are those who are persecuted for righteousness’ sake (for being and doing right), for theirs is the kingdom of heaven!"

Wednesday, April 17, 2013


So many times when we talk to pre-Christians they will say that they believe that there is something bigger and better out there, but they just don't want to have a whole new set of rules and restrictions that they will have to live by. This statement makes me sad mostly because it tells me that they have had exposure to Christians at some point in their life and that exposure was damaging. They were met with a religious, manipulating spirit that told them what they had to give up,quit and leave behind. Instead of being met with love, honor, acceptance and grace. In case y'all missed it Jesus didn't come to condemn or control but to love and to lead us into a relationship with Abba that goes beyond anything that we can imagine. Jesus did what Abba taught Him, said what Abba told Him, and so should we. When we seek Him and pursue and walk in His truth we become free, truly free. Does this give us license to go do whatever we desire? Yes as long as these things line up with what Abba is doing, you see the closer we get to Him the more our hearts and minds will be like His. This close relationship can't be obtained by just reading the Bible, the Bible says we must worship in spirit and in truth we need to have a mixture of both. Abba's desire is for us to be fully alive and free in Him. This is the life that we need to be showing others and not just those outside of the church, but also those that are sitting bound in religion in the church.
John 8:28-32 "So Jesus added, When you have lifted up the Son of Man [on the cross], you will realize (know, understand) that I am He [for Whom you look] and that I do nothing of Myself (of My own accord or on My own authority), but I say [exactly] what My Father has taught Me. And He Who sent Me is ever with Me; My Father has not left Me alone, for I always do what pleases Him. As He said these things, many believed in Him [trusted,  relied on, and adhered to Him]. So Jesus said to those Jews who had believed in Him, If you abide in My word [hold fast to My teachings and live in accordance with them], you are truly My disciples. And you will know the Truth, and the Truth will set you free."

Friday, April 12, 2013

coming in the opposite spirit.... a repost

I felt the need to repost one of my posts from last November. We need to be careful of who we surround ourselves with and what we allow them to speak. Remember gossip and backbiting is always divisive and breaks unity in the body.
So this morning I thought it would be good to wrap up Romans 12. I think for many Christ followers these verses are some of the hardest to live by, partly I think because we think that we have a responsibility to ourselves to standup to and defend against those who do us wrong, hurt us, lie about us and curse us. Many times we give these folks way too much or our head space and time. We had a special speaker at church last night one of things he said was "that he would much rather count his allies than his enemies." I personally have been a big fan of coming in the opposite spirit, these verses are a prime example of how that works. When you continue to bless and be nice to those that are trying to come against you it confuses them and ultimately it gives you control over the relationship. When you allow them to suck you into being negative and defensive you are giving them control. In Matthew 5 Jesus says "“But I tell you not to resist an evil person.  But whoever slaps you on your right cheek, turn the other to him also."  He isn't telling us to let others beat us or to be whipping posts, He is telling us to not let others (especially the evil ones) to control our reactions. Even though in the natural we could probably really hurt them, if we turn it to the spiritual and bless them the natural will be overcome.  Romans 12:14-21 - Bless those who persecute you [who are cruel in their attitude toward you]; bless and do not curse them.  Rejoice with those who rejoice [sharing others’ joy], and weep with those who weep [sharing others’ grief].  Live in harmony with one another; do not be haughty (snobbish, high-minded, exclusive), but readily adjust yourself to [people, things]  and  give yourselves to humble tasks. Never overestimate yourself  or  be wise in your own conceits.  Repay no one evil for evil, but take thought for what is honest  and  proper  and  noble [aiming to be above reproach] in the sight of everyone.  If possible, as far as it depends on you, live at peace with everyone.  Beloved, never avenge yourselves, but leave the way open for [God’s] wrath; for it is written, Vengeance is Mine, I will repay (requite), says the Lord.  But if your enemy is hungry, feed him; if he is thirsty, give him drink; for by so doing you will heap burning coals upon his head.  Do not let yourself be overcome by evil, but overcome (master) evil with good

Friday, April 5, 2013

Victory is mine, says the Lord

Psalm 108:13 "Through and with God we shall do  valiantly, for He it is Who shall tread down our adversaries."
Recently there has been a lot of talk about going into battle  and having confidence in our victories. It's the kind of talk that gets your inner warrior stirred up and ready to engage. But sometimes that inner warrior can get a little too rambunctious and cause us to get ahead of what Abba is doing. We need to remember that not every opportunity to enter the fray should be answered, only Abba knows what battles He has for us to partner with Him on. Only He knows what we are ready for and truly capable of. I guess some of this is coming from personal experience it is no fun getting battle wounds because you engaged in something that wasn't yours to engage in.  I look at the children of Israel when they went to battle against Ai without God's blessing and the got their butts handed to them or the seven sons of Sceva that ended up beaten and naked because they didn't have the authority to engage. Even when the warrior is stirring and is ready to go we need to remember that self-control is a fruit of the Spirit we need to wait until we receive direction, and need to be quickly obedient to Abba's guidance. Another thing that we need to watch for is not get so focused on battle that we spend all of our time looking for and pursuing the enemy, we are not called to pursue him. We are however called to pursue people sometimes the greatest battles we engage in is showing the world the love of the Father breaking through crusty exteriors built up by wounds inflicted mostly by religious people. When we engage from the kingdom of God our strategy changes we don't engage as the world engages, many times victory is found in death, death to self, to lies, to traditions, to whatever is blocking our victory.
Romans 8:37-39 "Yet amid all these things we are more than conquerors and gain a surpassing victory through Him Who loved us. For I am persuaded beyond doubt (am sure) that neither death nor life, nor angels nor principalities, nor things impending and threatening nor things to come, nor powers, Nor height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation will be able to separate us from the love of God which is in Christ Jesus our Lord."
1 John 5:4-5 "For whatever is born of God is victorious over the world; and this is the victory that conquers the world, even our faith. Who is it that is victorious over [that conquers] the world but he who believes that Jesus is the Son of God [who adheres to, trusts in, and  relies on that fact]?"

Tuesday, April 2, 2013

not just a get outta jail free card

During the Easter season we hear a lot about the cross and Jesus dying there for our sins. What we need to realize is that this is just the gateway to so much more. You see Abba's original intent for His creating man was to have someone that has the total freewill to want to have a relationship with Him. Someone that He could spend time with, converse with, co-labor with as a father does with his son. In accepting Christ as our savior and when we ask for forgiveness it is granted, but that forgiveness comes with the indwelling of the Holy Spirit, adoption into the family of God that includes a great inheritance and eternal life in His Kingdom. So when things get rough in life (and they will) we have the ability to live above or outside of our circumstance, because we are sons and daughters of the living God, the Creator of everything and our citizenship is with Him and not the world.
You see the cross is much more than a get outta jail free card. It's the gateway to an adventure that is more than anything we can imagine if we truly choose to follow Him.
Romans 8:11-18 "And if the Spirit of Him Who raised up Jesus from the dead dwells in you, [then] He Who raised up Christ Jesus from the dead will also restore to life your mortal (short-lived, perishable) bodies through His Spirit Who dwells in you. So then, brethren, we are debtors, but not to the flesh [we are not obligated to our carnal nature], to live [a life ruled by the standards set up by the dictates] of the flesh. For if you live according to [the dictates of] the flesh, you will surely die. But if through the power of the [Holy] Spirit you are [habitually] putting to death (making extinct, deadening) the [evil] deeds prompted by the body, you shall [really and genuinely] live forever. For all who are led by the Spirit of God are sons of God. For [the Spirit which] you have now received [is] not a spirit of slavery to put you once more in bondage to fear, but you have received the Spirit of adoption [the Spirit producing sonship] in [the bliss of] which we cry, Abba  (Father)! Father! The Spirit Himself [thus] testifies together with our own  spirit, [assuring us] that we are children of God. And if we are [His] children, then we are [His] heirs also: heirs of God and fellow heirs with Christ [sharing His inheritance with Him]; only we must share His suffering if we are to share His glory. [But what of that?] For I consider that the sufferings of this present time (this present life) are not worth being compared with the glory that is about to be revealed to us and in us and for us and conferred on us!"