Posts Tagged ‘Life’

My sign would read

Front side:  Wounded, broken, and bleeding out into the grey of lifless existance.

Back side: Proud to show the scars in my life as proof to the healing life found only in Christ.

What would YOUR sign say?


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This time of year always get’s me thinking about names and what goes into the naming process. Websters dictionary describes the word name to be a description, a word given to describe someone or something. When someone says I went to Yosemite, you understand where it is, the majesty there. If someone says I went to the Grand Canyon, you get a visual of its grandeur. When some one says I have seen the king, you don’t get a proper picture of whom he may be, because the word king is more of a title then a name. In Isaiah 9:6 the child to be born unto us, the Lord Jesus Christ, will be called Wonderful, Counsellor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace. Many people say these are titles, I will argue that these are names. Take Prince of Peace, He is called The Prince of Peace, the Sar Shalom, not a peaceful prince. It is His name not just a title, He is not a mere peace maker, but The Prince over Peace.

Most of my readers have a personal relationship with God through Jesus, but some do not. I welcome them both, my question is why are you a follower of Christ vs one who rejects Him, why are you a fully devoted follower vs one who rejects Jesus. Who is this child who grew up fully Jewish, who is this child who at 12 was a teacher to many adults, who is this man who was called rabbi, teacher, Lord. Who is this man who is called Wonderful, Counsellor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace. We have all these names for who Jesus is, who God is. The question is what is the name you have given Him, what do you call Him, to describe who He is to you. Whats in a name….majesty, soaring mountains, majestic cliffs, waterfalls, like at Yosemite. Or a gaping hole, an inspiring canyon, that you find at the grand canyon. I’m not looking for titles, I am looking for who God is to you. When I think of God I think of Abba, yes its a title but also a name, Daddy. When I think of God I think of Adonai, Master, to whom I am a slave, not a harsh master but a loving, caring, compassionate Master who gives instructions for living, as a blessing not as a burden. So who’s God to you, what name do you call him, be it good or not? For the One who was and is and is to come, why does the name you give him mean so much to you?

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Ever been rudely woken up out of a hard sleep? Yeah, me too – this morning in fact. Woken up by the yelling of “How big is your god…how big is your God!” My eyes pop open and I’m ready to go psycho Billy ninja on someone for waking me up before the alarm clock when I realize that it wasn’t from around me, but from inside me. As I sat up in bed, my mind beginning to clear from the fog of sleep, it became clear that, not only was it God that asked the question of me, but that He was waiting for an answer.

Admittedly my mind is spinning with a hundred answers to and thoughts about His question to me, and each one ending in a simple one word question of my own. Really? Each answer and thought forcing me to examine my own heart. Each question of “really?” forcing me to dig into places that, to be honest, I’d rather not go. Nevertheless, I’m begging God for the same thing David begged God for in Psalm 51.
“Create in me a clean heart, O God; and renew a right spirit within me.”
Let me never bow to any other but You God. Search me Lord and open my eyes to those things deep inside myself that displeases You. Exchange all of You for all of me God. In Jesus name I ask, amen.

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Person, Place, or Thing.
This past week I had two separate conversations about this thing called church. One with a coworker here in Arizona. The other with a friend who lives in the Middle East. The conversation with my coworker was about church, him possibly attending and what church is. This coworker stated “There are so many ones to choose from and they’re all different, how can you know it’s the right one? That the one you attend is teaching the right thing?”
It got me thinking about the church I partner with as well as my co-worker and so many others. We are in a Western Culture with a Western Mindset, where the church is a place we go, place we spend an hour a week, a place where you just check your God box and then go about your business. For us in the West, the church has become a building, a denomination, ours verses yours. First Baptist, Presbyterian, Phoenix First Assembly, Healing Place, LifeChurch.TV, even NewSpring Church. Is that all church is? A Place?
In talking with my friend in the Middle East I got a different perspective. We discussed ‘church’ and in his perspective we are heroes. He was brought up where church isn’t a place but a thing. A place where church isn’t welcomed with opened arms. It’s not that they don’t congregate in one place, it’s that people in his country view church as a thing, a movement that sprouted from the West. Where its soul purpose is to dominate and reign. A movement that attempts to infiltrate government. A movement that attempts to cause division within families by setting one family member against another. It’s a mindset of church being a movement that causes so many to reject it’s principles. Personally, when I read scripture, and I read about what church is intended to be I don’t see it as a place, its not described that way, nor as a movement, its not described that way either.
I see church as a people. In fact when you see church in scripture, the Greek word used is Ecclesia, it simply means called out ones, not called into, not called for. But simply called out. See, the scriptures say the church is a people that sometimes congregate together for fellowship, to lift each other up as a community of believers, a people that can create change in government, in family, but not by their own movement, but by the spirit of God. To live as a fully devoted follower of Christ.
I submit to you that the church wasn’t created for us, but as followers of Jesus we are the church created for the world, not as a place, not as a thing, but as a people. A people that doesn’t seek their own agenda, but instead the agenda of God. His purpose, His will, His passion, His desire. I believe the church according to scripture is depicted as the bride of Christ.
Now if the church was simply a place then admittingly it would seem as if she were riddled with bipolar multiple personality disorder schizophrenia. Is that the bride that the very son of God is looking to wed?
Now if the church is simply a movement then would Jesus be wanting a bride that shifts her option at her whim, as she sees fit, no matter others perspective, feelings or thoughts. Would He want a runaway bride? Would you?
Now if the church were a people that came together with one mind, in one accord, fully devoted to Christ in passionate Love, with nothing around them but Him. A people that not only believed, but knew that He knows them intimately, all their past, all their present, their passion, their desire, their hopes and hurts. That He knows how many times they have fallen short and how many times He has forgiven them completely. A people set apart to be His Ecclesia, to be the bride of Christ.
So for me the church…. Person? Place? Thing?
YES! A people called out, set apart that at times come together in a place whether that place be called LifeChurch East Valley, Chase Field, or Phoenix International Raceway. A people called out, for a movement, not of their own design nor desire, but one initiated and motivated by God, for God, through God. To create the radiant Bride of Christ.
Person, Place, or Thing. Share your thoughts. You have mine.

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