Posts tagged ‘Christianity’

Change Your Sound pt 7 : what sound does Jesus want you to hear?

1. Jesus meets you where you are

John 20:19- on the evening of that first day of the week, when the discuss were together,with the doors locked for fear of the Jewish leaders, Jesus came and stood among them and said, “peace be with you”

Many of us find ourselves in this situation, closed off an locked away from the world. Maybe not for any other reason of that we have been hurt and betrayed. So we find ourselves locked away with our fear. Then Jesus shows up in the midst of the disciples’ fear. Jesus always shows up in the middle, and He releases their fear .

2. He gives us encouragement

John 20:19-“peace be with you”

Jesus says nothing more than peace. He didn’t address anything other than their storm and speaks peace into their lives. The doors were locked, but they could not lock Jesus out. By the same token, no matter how much we lock ourselves away, Jesus still can come through with his peace.

The last thing they were expecting was Jesus to come in and say what he said. He had just been beaten and crucified. Why would he show up? Besides, they had all left him alone. They had betrayed him. If anything, they expected him to chastise them for abandoning him in his darkest hour. When God shows up, he doesn’t bring condemnation. He brings peace. We often wonder what God thinks about what we do and who we are, but God comes in love to bring us peace. He can relate to our fears. He understands.

Philipians 4:6-7- be anxious for nothing, but in everything make your requests known to God;and the peace of God…..will guard your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus.

3. He shows us his love.

John 20:20- after he said this, he showed them his hands and side. The disciples were overjoyed when they saw The Lord.

Instead of condemning then, he showed them what he gave up for them. He gave them undeniable proof of his love. It is love in action. His love for us is not performance based. We don’t have to earn it, because we can’t earn it. He gives it freely through grace. He comes into our hearts and addresses our guilt and resentment. He covers them in his great mercy. He models this for us so that we can learn to let go of guilt and resentment. We can be free of them; no longer a slave to them in our lives. Because of this, Peter goes from wanting to give up to preaching a historic sermon that adds 3000 people to the new church.

Psalms 32:1-2- blessed is the one whose transgressions are forgiven,whose sins are covered. Blessed is the one whose sin The Lord does not count against them

4. He wants to fill us

John 20:21- and with that he breathed on then and said, ” receive the Holy Spirit”

He comes to us, meets us, loves us, and then he fill us anew. We need a continuous, constant, daily filling of the Holy Spirit.

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Change Your Sound pt 5

Psalm 16:11- in your presence is fullness of joy

Acts 3:19- repent of your sins and turn to God, so that your sins may be washed away. Then times of refreshment will come from the presence of The Lord.

We need the presence of God, because it brings fullness of joy and refreshment. This is why we need to change our sound, so that we may experience the manifested presence of God.

Isaiah 6:1-4- in the year that King Uzziah died, I saw The Lord, high and exalted. Seated on a throne; and the train of his robe filled the temple. Above Him were seraphim, each with 6 wings: two covering their faces, two covering their feet, and two for flying. And they were calling to one another: ” holy holy holy is The Lord Almighty…..”

Three things happen when we are in Gods presence

1. We see how BIG God is. –

2 chronicles 26:14-15 describes how good a king Uzziah was. He was skilled creating ways to help his armies. Thus, his fame spread far and wide.

At the end of his rule though, full of pride, he walked into the temple of The Lord, and begins to burn incense to The Lord. The priests freaked out and tried to stop him, but Uzziah didn’t listen. He felt like he could worship God however he wanted. Immediately, he broke out in leprosy. He saw his mistake., and was declared unclean. So he had to live the rest of his life away from the people.

This is often true of us- that we think we can worship God however we wish, instead of by the statutes that God has given us. We should be humble before God. Our hearts should be in the right place. In worship, God doesn’t judge our sin. He judges our hearts.

So, Uzziah died, and Isaiah goes into the temple to mourn him. But in the midst of this, He saw God. While he thought Uzziah was big, He realized at that moment how BIG God really was. He saw the majesty and splendor of His glory. This is why we need to be in church. We constantly need reminding of how BIG God’s presence is. This is why Satan fights us so horribly on Sunday mornings. He needs us to stay away from seeing The Lord. When god is showing up in our services, we too will say that “we have seen The Lord. ” If he can keep us from the presence of God, he has done his job well. We can’t let him win.

2. We see how small we really are.

Isaiah 6:5-“Woe to me,” I cried, ” I am ruined! For I am unclean, and I live among a people of unclean lips, and my eyes have seen the King, Lord Almighty!”

In God’s presence, we see how small we really are. We see every area of our lives for what it really is. Once we see god, though, our problems become so small. Our concerns shrink. In this scripture, we see the angels declaring how holy God truly is, and we see just how unholy we really are. We can’t become holy by ourselves either.

In Rev 4;8- John has a vision of the living creatures, again, declaring God’s holiness.

Psalm 22:3- “but You are holy God.”

It’s ok for us to see our sin and imperfections when we are in God’s presence. He has no issues with our sin. He DOES have an issue with someone who is not upfront about their sin.

When I’m in God’s presence, my eyes are open to the things God wants to change my life.

3. We see how GOOD GOD is.

His very nature is His goodness.

Isaiah 6:7- then one of the seraphim flew to me with a live coal in his hands, which he had taken with tongs from the altar. With it, he touched my tongue and said,” see, this has touched your lips; your guilt is taken away and your sin atoned for.”

in His presence, we see our sin, but we also see His goodness, and how His grace has atoned for all of our sin and imperfections. He purges our sin. He strengthens us to be holy. He is not trying to make us feel guilty, but He wants to shower us with his goodness.

Psalms 103:12- as far as the east is from the west, so far Has He removed our transgressions from us.

Our redemption and atonement is not based on our performance. It’s based on His goodness and His love. We can only experience God’s grace when we humble ourselves.

Isaiah 1;18- come now and let us settle the matter, though your sins are like scarlet, they shall be as white as snow; though they be as red as crimson, they shall be like wool”

Just Thoughts

I feel like I should piggyback on the whole idea of fit that I blogged about last night. AS I said, it is an area that has really been on my mind lately. As in, How do I fit into my church? What purpose am I serving? How well am i serving that purpose? While some may disagree, I don’t necessarily see myself as a church leader either. The way i see it, I am merely doing whatever I am asked to do, by whomever happens to ask me to do it. Isn’t that what any effective church member would do? In my eyes, that’s the way it should be if it isn’t.  That’s the way that I have always operated, and while my pride sometimes rises up and wants to be recognized with acclaim or a title, it’s easier and easier to beat that back by the strength of God.

I think that I am understanding now that ministry is not for the church. It’s for the marketplace, or where we live, do our business, exist. You may call it the world. Thus, the fit that I have been seeking so horribly over the last few years, this “ministry” that I have chased for so long, is realized when I am obedient outside of the church. Now, all of this is stuff that I have known in my mind for so long, but it is beginning to translate into my heart in a tangible way. The good thing about this is that I don’t have to feel as if I have to earn accolades and approval from man, nor do I have to feel like what I do in church is some kind of job interview. There is a liberty in realizing that my ministry may not fit inside of my church, but it fits in the world because of the training that I have received IN the church. It is just as paul writes, that the 5 fold ministry was given unto men for the equipping of the saints. We aren’t equipped so that we can do things within 4 walls. We are equipped to be world changers once the church dismisses.

So, I may be different. You may be different. We may not fit in any traditional sense inside of a church, but that does not diminish the need fro us to be IN the church. In fact, it increases the need for us to be developed by Godly leadership. Only then can our true fit be realized.

So, if you are like me and feel “different” about your place…my advice is simply this..

GET IN the four walls, so that you can GET OUT of the four walls, and GET ACTIVE in changing the world.

Be blessed.

 

 

Change Your Sound pt 2

How many times do we live our lives in position to receive what God has for us? We say that we are waiting on Heaven to move for us, but God is waiting on us to place ourselves into position. We position ourselves through obedience in little things.

Matt 18:19- if two of you agree about anything on earth, it will be done by my Father in heaven.

2 chron 7:14- if my people who are called by my name would humble themselves……then I will heal their land.

Mark 2:22- no one pours new wine into an old wineskins….No, they pour new wine into new wineskins.

You can’t take a new experience with God and place it in your old routine. If we do the same thing everyday, we will have the same result. We must make changes. You can’t put a new sound in a new attitude. A new season can’t come without some new changes accompanying it. Newness requires newness.

Something has to change if you want something to change.

1 Cor. 1:27- but God chose the foolish things of the world to shame the wise; the weak things of the world to shame the strong;the lowly things of the world and the despised things – and the lowly things that are…..

People should look at your life and the way you have changed and say, ” that HAS to be God.”

The problem with the American church is we have built the church to look good to people, but not to God.

Psalm 114:1-2 – when Israel went out of Egypt. The house of Jacob from a people of strange language, Judah became His sanctuary, and Israel his dominion.

This means that God’s spirit and presence is found where the praises are! All Christians are His dominion, but praise is where God chooses to dwell!

Psalms 22:3- but thou art holy, O Lord, that inhabit the praises of Israel.

This means that when we praise Him, we build Him a throne. Bigger praise= bigger throne!

Change Your Sound

Mark 2:22- and no one pours new wine into an old wine skin. Otherwise the wine would burst the skins, and both the wine and the wineskins will be ruined. No, they pour new wine into new wineskins.

This verse is a metaphor for our lives. We can not receive newness from God into our old lives. We must be made new. We must become fresh now, so that God can pour His newness into us. We keep waiting on God to make a move. God is waiting on us to prepare ourselves first.

Sometimes church is the last one to let go of old things. We hold onto traditions, living inside of time warps. But we must crave something new. We can not get stuck in a rut. God is waiting on us to make a move.

-God will not pour out something new into our spirits until we have prepared ourselves to receive it. You can’t put a new move of God into an old tradition.

Ps 33:3, 51:10- these scriptures command us to sing a new song.

1 Cor. 1:25-28- for the foolishness of God is wiser than man’s wisdom…..but God chose the foolish things of the world to shame the wise…..

Faith makes you ignore what your physical eyes see, instead of trusting them. You have to see in the spirit before it happens.

Your miracle starts with what you hear and choose to see in your spirit, long before you see it with your natural eyes,

Being Mercy Brokers

Luke 10:30-37

“I’m not even sure that Jesus would be in church if he were in this world today, cause he said that he would leave the 99 to seek after the one.” – Glenn Burris

1. Mercy is compassion in action. Mercy is not a feeling or emotion. It’s not being sympathetic.

2. Mercy will cost you something. If it doesn’t cost you anything, then it probably isn’t mercy.

3. Mercy is doing without expecting a return.

I’m a Survivor: Is Your Mind Made Up?

Job 1:1-3;6- there was a man in the land of Uz, whose name was Job; and he was blameless and upright, and one who feared God and shunned evil. He had 10 children and vast possessions. He was the richest. Of all the people of the East. Now there was a day when the sons of God came to present themselves before The Lord, and Satan also came among them. And The Lord said to Satan, “from where do you come.”

True greatness is not measured by possessions, but rather by what you have inside of you. Job did not come from wealthy beginnings. He made wise decisions and put God first, thus God blessed everything that he did.

Matt 7:13-14- enter through the narrow gate, for wide is the gate and broad is the road that leads to destruction, and many enter through it. But small is the gate and narrow is the road that leads to life, and only a few find it.

You can’t reach heaven by following after the crowd. Job decided to cling to what was good and shunned what was evil. Job walked in favor, but understood that what he had did not make him. He understood that his source for everything was God. The sooner we take on n attitude of clinging to the goodness of God and shunning evil, the sooner we can walk in God’s favor.

Two things determine what we will become in life:
1. Our decisions
2. Our response to God

God lets us decide how we will live. He gave us a choice.

We have the power to make our own choices, but our choices have the power to make us.

Ecc 12:1- remember now your creator in the days of youth, before the difficult days come,

We cannot choose the environment we are born into, but we can choose our reaction and our response.

You don’t wait till you’re in the middle of a storm to make your decision to follow Christ. How you respond to Him now will determine how you handle your battle or storm.