Sunday, May 6, 2012


It would be a mistake to look at the few things out of a lifetime of a person, that they were credited with, and think that the rest of their days were more or less idle. 

I think guys like Moses weren't just idly milling about tending sheep when one day God broke in on their lives and everything changed.    Or think about Gideon.  What was he doing before God spoke to him in the barn?  Was he evil?  I don't think so . I think he was faithful, and pursuing to know God.  

His story is different than, say Boaz, who was a successful, God-honoring and beloved landowner, who paid attention to his workers' families and concerns. With a guy like Boaz, you could imagine he was a faithful man. 

Why wouldn't we think the same about these other men before their lives were used to change the course of history for a nation?  Why wouldn't we think the same about ourselves before our own lives were used to change a culture, or disciple a nation?  


What I'm getting at is that I do believe God chooses the foolish things of this world- the nobodies- to accomplish His will in their day. And I do believe He draws them out of obscurity to do it. That's a big part of just Who He is.  

But I do not believe He chooses men who have settled into a mediocre life, who haven't dared to rock the boat with their questions, or worse, have no questions. Such men end up with little thought of God, and are fairly unmoved by the things of God.  That kind of man will die in his obscurity, and never change the world he occupies.  They are like sticks in a streambed- the water ripples, passes around them, and continues on its way, unchanged. 

But a man who has something churning inside him- some urgency, some discontent, some vision- that man, who wrestles and pursues God for what is stirring inside Him, will find God break in on his life, and see everything change.  Because that man is responding to the thing inside him that God put there to be answered. And as he finds answers for that path- which God is leading him on, by the way- he will not be able to help but breach the bank of that stream and redirect its waters.  His place in the world will be changed. And we will all be better for it.


So, maybe my idea of faithfulness is different.  I say ask your questions.  This IS a journey of Discovery. God made the earth and mankind, and you, to express every aspect of His true nature  What is God wanting to express through you? I believe it has more to do with what unsettles you, than what gives you peace. Pursue your discontent with God, your indignance, your doubts. You will discover a real life God, and the answers you find will be a real expression of Himself- revealed to you, and to the world through you.  It's a daring, off-road journey. You'll be a discoverer. And the world will be changed.

Thursday, May 3, 2012

Colossians 3 revisited

Everything about God's intentions for mankind, and for your own life have now come to pass.  Now that you have invited the architect of all time and humanity to take over your life, you now have access to a whole new life.  You get to live for things you couldn't have even hoped for before.  You were stuck like a dog on a short chain, without any chance of chasing anything you really wanted. 

Now you've discovered that what you really wanted all along was to be connected to Jesus Christ.  You've been feeding an obsession, but you didn't realize that what you were really obsessing for was Jesus.  You've secretly longed for a day when you could have something better than your harsh responses and sinful choices that were your only options.  Well, your day has come.  With Christ in you, a new world has just opened up, and you're not that stuck person anymore.  In Christ you are now freed to go after the things that are only found in the kingdom of Heaven.  Things that give life real meaning, and hope, and joy.

So set your sights on the realities of heaven- where Christ sits in the place of honor at God's right hand, where He has all authority, and where His ways and His will just happen all the time.  You've had a whole wasted lifetime of dwelling in the limited, optionless world of disappointing outcomes.  Now you have been freed to dwell on the things of heaven, so start dwelling there, and not here in this mess!  This world and its old ways have nothing for you anymore- you discovered your real life when you invited Jesus Christ into it.

Now you get to leave behind all that junk that was your only option before.  Now you get to start walking into what you were made for. 

Now you can put to death the sinful things lurking in you that were destroying you.  Now you can put on a whole new nature... and be renewed... and learn to know your Creator... and become like Him!  Woohoo!

You know why? Because God chose you. Yes, He really chose you. And what He chose you for is His outstanding, feedom-filled, joy-filled, holy life.  Now you can clothe yourself, not with the rags of sexual immorality, impurity, and lust; but instead with the robes of tender-hearted mercy, kindness, and humility.  

Now you can exchange things you were stuck doing when you had no other options- like your angry responses, rage, and maliciousness- for things of the kingdom like gentleness, and patience.  Isn't that what you really want, if only there was a way?  What I'm telling you is that it's not too much to hope for!  

Instead of your old knee-jerk responses of slander and cursing and lies, in your new life in Christ you have access to new responses.  Now you can make allowances for faults instead of judging them. That's freedom, dear one.  Now you can forgive those who offend you , instead of wishing they were dead.  

Don't laugh, you used to want that. And maybe you still do, but now you have access to Heaven, where Jesus is, where grace is, and you can have that, and find things like forgiveness for others.  By dwelling on the realities of heaven, when these things come up, bring them to the Lord in prayer.   He will answer you, and be strong for you, and you can start walking in the blessed, loving responses you secretly long to have. This is what you were made for.  To be like Him in these things.


Now above all, brethren, clothe yourselves with Love, which binds us together in perfect harmony.  And let peace - that comes from Jesus - that you never knew before - that you now have access to - just completey, totally rule in your heart!

Here in the kingdom life... where Jesus is... Jesus is all that matters!  Huh... where Jesus is, He's all that matters... So how "here" do you want Him to be?  And it doesn't matter where you're coming from.  Whether you  think you're important or think you're nobody. Whether you're classy or a redneck. Whether you're slaving for the man, or you ARE the man... Jesus is all that matters.

So let this message about the new life in Christ, in all its richness, fill your lives. Talk about these things all the time with eachother, in the wisdom He gives.  Sing psalms, hymns and songs in the Spirit, with words from the Holy Spirit welling up from inside you. This is beautiful worship and praise to the Lord we love.  And in everything, give thanks through the Lord Jesus to God the Father.