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Wednesday, May 29, 2013

Dress Us Up in Unity.

I have to confess, as I was writing the title to this post, I was singing "Dress Us Up" By John Mark McMillan haha.

  I posted a little while back about the need for the body.  Today, I want to share an encounter I had when I was maybe 16 or 17.

I   was praying in my room and all of sudden I was no longer in my room.  I opened my eyes and immediately was aware I had entered into the abode of God.  Or Heaven.  I saw a worn down little workshop.  I felt pushed to go inside.  Everything around me was alive.  Not like here, but really alive.  The stones were singing, even the air was alive and singing.  I went into this workshop, and it was clean, but you could tell it was well used.  It appeared to be a carpenter's shed. Tools were hanging all over on the walls, but very neatly.  Then Jesus walked in.  With dirty nails I might add.  He had a torn white cloth which He carried as of it was the most important treasure on the planet.  He laid it down on the work table, and began sowing with a red thread.  As I moved closer I saw that the shape of a dress was forming.  He laughed and said "Everyone only wants to wear the part that fits them.  No one wants to fit together.  Right now my grace allows them to do this."  At this point He started weeping loudly,    "My grace allows them to shred the dress that they are suppose to be wearing, but it will not always be."

"I am coming back for one bride who wears one dress.  This dress.  They must learn to unite.  I created a unite, a bride.  I am coming for a bride who wears the perfect stainless dress, and here it is"

 At this point He showed me that the red thread He was using was not thread at all, but His own blood.  He continued sowing.  I then noticed the percilur method in which he was sowing. He was not sewing as a seamstress sews a dress,  but it looked far closer to a surgeon placing in stitches.  He  sewed it one piece at a time. One stitch at a time. He was healing us. He was repairing us like the doctor He is.  

"There is a dress that I will not fix.  I will not repair it, and it will be much smaller than this, but only those who fit in are worthy to wear it.  But it will be a dress that grows.  I'm placing a high price on unity, and a high reward for those who seek it."

I did not understand all I know now.  I did not know what He meant when He said "There is a dress that I will not fix, but only those who fit are worthy to wear it.  I will not repair it, and it will be much smaller than this.  But it will be a dress that grows."

I now believe that it means the bride that is willing to work together as one will be much smaller, and many will fall away when this is required.  I feel like something is going to happen where we have to work together.  I feel like any who want to stay alone, outside of community, will fall away.  I think it means those of us with so much pride will not fit. I think that when He said it will grow, it meant that as a Unit, we will be able to reach more.  We will make a greater impact for the Kingdom.  Only as A bride can we accomplish this!

 The Bride is lovely, so beautiful in every way.   I dare not carelessly speak against the bride of my Lord. But we MUST speak the truth in love.  If I am to speak love, I must speak truth.  The relationship between the two can not be broken.  I must speak my love for the bride, how can I hold it back, and I must speak the truth, otherwise I do not truly love her.

 In our times, the biggest division is always a steam from offence.  The bible clearly says our generation will be one who walks in offence, and this would make our hearts grow cold.  We must work together, pushing past our offence, so that we can burn.  The bible also clearly points out that when we separate from each other our hearts will grow cold.  The fire that ignited us comes from Him, but can only be maintained in community.

I want to talk more about offence in the next post, but I just wanted to share the encounter with everyone this time.

Sunday, May 26, 2013

My custody battle.

Today in Church, Bob Jones shared an amazing word for us.  I'm paraphrasing, so it won't be word for word what he said,but the word was that he saw something white.  He said it was not a dream, he was awake this morning.  He reached out and touched it.  It shocked him, and it was made of wool.  He asked the Lord what it meant.  He said he wondered because you can't wear wool in the Holy of Holies, and you can sweat there either.  The Lord told Bob that we had gotten cold.  That we needed to catch back on fire, and that the wool was to warm our cold hearts.  I'm sure it's up on the website if you want to hear it word for word and better understand it.  If you're looking for it, look under Sunday Morning meetings, and they shared it right after the worship part of the service was over.

     This hit hard for me with strong conviction, yet it was also very edifying. During worship, The Lord spoke to me and said "I've enjoyed your visitations.   You visit me every Sunday, and sometimes daily.  But they are just visits.  If all you've given Me is visitation rights, who has custody over you?  Who is your parental guardian? Custody with me means protection, custody with the father of lies means a jail cell.  I'm not looking for a visitation, but a habitation. "

It was a call to deeper intimacy with Him.  I've not been satisfied where I'm at and I've been starving for more.  Both these words confirm that I need more and that my heart has been distracted because of the storm around me with all the blows and the people the enemy is using around me.

I once shared my desire for more of God with a youth pastor, but it was not very encouraging. I shared with him that I wanted to go out and raise the dead and be radical for God and just do the things the early church did.  His reply was "You can ask for those thing, but you might never get them.  God does not have to give you signs and wonders!"

  I don't, and never have sought for signs and wonders.   I've always sought God, and what my youth pastor did not understand was that those things were put on my heart by God as a result of my seeking Him.  What my youth pastor also did not understand is that those things that I was asking for were already guaranteed to me.   Through both personal words and also through the Written Word. Mark 16:17 is a seal that those things are for God's children.  He does not have to give them to us, but He already has.

For me, a lot of the lack of the things I was desiring was only there to point out the lack of sonship I had with the Father.  I did not understand I was His son, and that He freely gave me those things.  I did not have to cry out for hours.  I did not have to beg.  Or fast, starving myself for months, or do anything because He gave them to me.  For FREE.    Every single one of my friends know I love a deal.  If it's from a thrift store or with coupons at Bi Lo, you can count me in!  But you don't get a better deal than what Jesus has offered us!  We are adopted as sons of God, alongside Jesus, and capable of everything He did.  Those things became evident in my life when I started walking in the custody of the Father.  

  Today's service really confirmed and makes me strive even more to have more of that fired burning inside of me.  Let me burn!

Friday, May 24, 2013

Broken Glory

I find myself at your feet, breaking my life open like a bottle of perfume that the ancient whores poured out on you.  I find myself undone and built up.  I find myself torn open and made whole.  I find the completion of my own brokenness at your feet.   Not an emotional downfall, but an uprising of grace.  I'm broken because of your deep love for me, which waters this thirsty desert.  My heart is a garden that thirst for the morning rain.  Every detail of my life is cared for by your tender hands.  The tender hands of a lover, of a gardener, of a farmer, of a father.  I fall down at your feet at the revelation of who you are.  You are a lion, strong and mighty.  You are a father, and your arms are like towers over me.  Loving me, guiding me, never neglecting me.  Unconditionally loving me. You loved the sinner inside of me because you saw past my sin.  You loved wretch I have been because you saw no wretchedness.  You have forgotten my wrongs because love holds no grudges, and love forgets.  You are love.  You are my love.  All love flows out of you.   Love flows from your mouth into mine and I overflow into the world around me.  Your love is deeper than the sky, and more complex than the universe.  You are the sun, bringing light and life to a dark and straining world.  Restore in me the intimacy we always have had.  Awaken the revelation of our oneness, my lover and God.  I know you beyond an imaginary being, I know you as real.   But if you were in my imagination only, than that's only where I'd be found.  But you extend to the Heavens. Into reality.  You are not limited. So I go.  I go where you go and you are everywhere.  I go and bring the revelation of your presence.  I am goer. I want to go where you already are.  Take me to the ends that the ends may have a new beginning in you.  You're more real to me today than yesterday and my need for you is more real than my need for water.  I crave you.  Just let me stay at your feet always.  The mighty feet of a lion on the prowl.

Wednesday, May 22, 2013

The need for fellowship.

As we've moved up to Charlotte and started a new life, we really realize that community is everything.  It's fundamental to our Spiritual well being and emotional health.  We are creatures of community and we need to  be around others.  We long for companionship.  Some of us desire large groups, and some of us want nothing more than a spouse.  There are levels of connectivity, and we all want some level of it.

Our first and foremost relationship comes from YHW.  Without a  creator, we could not even feel love for other people, (1 John)   Because He loves us, we can love Him back. And because we love Him, we can love others.  You would be ok with just Jesus, but I don't think you would thrive without the community that Jesus created and calls His bride.  The need for fellowship with other saints is fundamental to the faith.  Anyone who knows anything about the Christian faith knows that we take communion. You may not know what it is or what it means, but you know the church does it.   We drink grape juice for the blood, and bread for the body of Christ, and it's call communion.  This communion is suppose to serve as a reflection to a real communion that we really already have in Christ. A fellowship of our soul and God's soul is what communion represents, and we could not have that fellowship except through the blood and the broken body of Christ.  It's a reminder. When Christ was on the earth, He said "do this in remembrance of me.".

The blood represents His gift to us, and the bread represents His Body, which was broken, but which he rebuilt using us.   He is in a physical body right now, the scripture is clear, but we are his "body" or his agent on the earth.  We need to be in communion with the blood, and the body.  We can not have just Jesus and leave the body, and we cannot  have just the body and leave Jesus.  Paul warned early Christians of this, urging them to make sure the communion was real and the the acts of taking the elements were just representations of the way they were living their lives.  We need to be living in a way where we are living as one.  One with God and one with our brothers in Christ.  He really desires our unity.  I want to share an encounter I had, but not today in this post, but maybe in the next few days.  Just understand, community and union is very important to God, and we should never tear a bridge down in the body, but try to build and work together.  If you get attacked, swallow pride and turn the other cheek.   

  But community also means accountability.  We need to be willing to be corrected, and we  need to be willing to correct each other. I really don't mind being corrected, and have a hard time standing my ground against others who are wrong, not just in my opinion, but are obviously living in error. (I'm talking about Christians who are living in the world around me, not random people.  Those, who you are in fellowship with, are the ones you have a responsibility to be corrected and correct.)   I'm getting better about calling wrong thinking wrong, even when I'm under attack, but it is not easy for me. That is one thing I do need to work on, because walking away from someone who is wrong is easy, but it's not always right.  Sometimes God wants you to bring the revelation of the right way, so someone can get off the wrong path. Sometimes loving does mean walking away, but usually I find that the right thing to do is harder.  If it's easy to walk away, I need to stay most of the time, and if it's hard to say goodbye, that the path that I need to take.   I've had to do both.  When it's hard to say good bye, and you know you have too, that means you're doing right because your love for them is so deep.  When it's hard to confront, that can mean that you love them too much to offend them, but you have to!  The psalms say "Trust the wounds of a friend, but the kisses of the enemy bring deception. "

Community is not easy, but it's worth it and it's glorious. 

Tuesday, May 21, 2013

Why Not What If

Why don't we practice what we believe and know?  Why do we claim to have all the answers in the light, but when darkness comes we stumble?  I, and many of friends, have a deep and real relationship with Jesus, and in the past year, we've had the biggest doubts of our lives.  There has been a lot of stuff thrown at us that wasn't fair or right, and we let it get to us.  We said beforehand that we have a God who never leaves us, yet we felt so alone.  We knew He would never forsake us, but we stood forsaken.  Or so we thought. What if we carried our beliefs into the darkness?  What if we acknowledged and understood the truth of our oneness with Christ in what seems like a storm?  What if we really made the joy of the Lord our strength when depression hit. This sounds so simple in theory, but it becomes crazy hard when we try to practice it.  In the light, before the storm, it's easy.  But when doubt comes and we are tired, it's hard to keep on.  What if we really understood who we were?  What if we really understood what we were capable of doing and not doing?  What if the revelation of our dead sinful nature was real to us? Why do we willingly resurrect a dead man?  How different would our lives and our world be if we practiced what is true, even when we can't see it?

Monday, May 20, 2013

Spirituality VS Religion.

The first paragraph is boring and not necessary but gives a little more information of my motivation for writing this.  You can read it or skip over it, the overall point of this post will remain intact either way.

  I recently read an article about spiritual but not religious people written from the point of view that you needed religion and it claimed that those who claimed to be spiritual but not religious were always rebellious, hard headed, or ignorant.  The article labeled those who claimed to be spiritual but not religious as SBNR (Spiritual But Not Religious), and highlighted two things. It highlighted that those who claimed to "SBNR" could not substantiate what it meant to be "SBNR"  or what they meant by claiming to be "SBNR" .  The assumption was that they were cut off or cut themselves off from the body and could not respect church authority.  It also highlighted the need for church structure.  The whole article had a lot of pretense and assumptions  about the "SBNR" crowd.  I disagreed with that because in my life, those who attacked a statement or strongly disagreed with it sometimes actually did agree with what I was saying, but because of the pretense and assumption because of what I may have sounded like, they spoke out.  It's not that what I said was not worded right to the crowd that I was speaking to, but rather we have a tendency to relate and compare statements.  I've had my statements related to and compared to things that I did not say at all, but I've done the same thing too.

   I do strongly claim to be "SBNR".  That does not mean that I am not plugged into a local church.  That does not mean that I have any trouble respecting church authority.  It means that my relationship with Christ is made by His efforts and not mine.  Religion is a man based  effort to reach God, or god's depending on the religion.   Maybe it's Christianity or maybe Muslim, if it teaches you have to do something to receive the gift of  grace, it's a works based path that I'm not on. I believe that God's grace is FREE and there is nothing that you can do to earn it or because it's already given to you and poured out on you. Now a lot of people will read that statement and assume that I am an univerlist. Nope.  I never said everyone is going to get into Heaven.  I said the grace was freely given, not received.   It's a choice.  You can choose to reject grace, but you can't choose to earn it.  It's impossible to earn it.  It's free, and you can't earn something that is free, otherwise there is a price. Being "SBNR"  means that I have a relationship, not a system of rules that I have to follow or that I am disciplined enough to abstain from sin, and it also means I'm not trying to be.  My ability to not "sin" does not come out of me from knowledge of evil or my discipline, but from my love for God. Jesus said "If you LOVE me, you will obey me."   He did not highlight fear or discipline as ways to obtain perfection, He highlighted love.   In 1 John, we read directly that His love does perfect us and cast out our fear!

Being "SBNR" means pursuing a relationship over knowledge.   I don't have the answer!!! The answer has ME.   That's enough for me.  Out of the relationship I have with the answer, revelation overflows, but revelation is not what I'm after.  I'm after time with Daddy.

Being "SBNR"  does not mean I am not involved in church.  It actually means I've awoken to my identity as the church. Not only do I go to church, I am the church!  Wherever I go, church is!   Now, I do understand the importance of being part of the body and fellowship.  I do not neglect the fellowship of the saints by any means.  Jesus said take my body and my blood.  The blood is what He gives.  The body is the church, and we must be in communion with both.

Being "SBNR"  means I follow every word of the bible, because it's a God based order, which leads to life, but it means that I don't follow man made traditions that lead to the grave.  The bible is sooo good, but our interpretation of it can be sooo wrong!

People ask me if I am a Christian or what I am, and the only titles that I really care for are mystic or lover.  Mystic is easier to explain to people, but lover is more accurate. I'm a lover of God.  I'm a lover of His bride, and His order, and I love seeing religion die.  I believe what the bible teaches, and most Christians would really agree with me on a lot of what I believe, but I just don't work under the slavery of works based theology.

Being a mystic means I'm seeking truth at all cost and I'm inviting everyone to join in with me.

Wednesday, May 15, 2013

Dealing in Deception

There is a person that I don't speak with anymore.  I'm not bitter, although that is always the first thing that people think when they hear what has happened.  People think that if I had forgiven this person, our relationship would be restored, I would be calling this person and chatting up like old times. There was  a time where this relationship was the most important thing in my life.  Deception tears things.  It's destroys.   When you forgive someone, that does not mean that you are immediately reconciled with them.  It takes two.    Even with God, there are those that choose the be outside the gates.  There are those that choose separation.  I don't know what EXACTLY that looks like, but I know God loves us too much to force us into a relationship with Him that we don't want.  It takes two people to rebuild.  It only takes one to destroy. As far as this person goes, the best thing for me to do is stay out of their life.  If I go around them, there is a temptation for this person to control, manipulate, and deceive.  I'm not giving them a chance.  Not for me, but for them.  They will have to answer for those actions.  I use think just do right, and if they do wrong because you did right it's on them.  Now I feel that doing right means not giving that person a chance to do wrong that leads them into self destruction or pain.  It may mean letting people go.  Not for you, but for them.  In this situation, I know stepping back was the only option without falling into the lies.   I've also found that the more light in me there is shining, the more the darkness hates it.  The closer I got to God, the more this person has always seen demons on  me.  Times where I was really worshiping, they saw scars on my face.  Now I'm getting closer to God, and people are bringing confirmation to that, and this person, from long distance, is seeing the same things.  I'm getting closer to the light, and it's hard for them to see from the darkness they are in.  I don't know what the point of this post was other than to just ramble about today.

The great natural world.

I went outside to sit for a while and I was just thinking.  I once pursued spiritual encounters as the greatest thing and treasure in my life.  I experienced great things, that I will always treasure.  I was taken outside my body, met with angels , and flew over cities.  Things I could never do in just my body.  I always thought these things were better than the natural world.  I thought my visions and dreams were better, and I retreated further into them.  I still highly value them, but no longer do I view them as better than the natural world.  God looked at it and said it was good.  A kind of gnosticism had invaded my world.  God told me to garden this year.  My garden is just as "spiritual" as raising the dead, or anything else because it's what God wanted me to do.  If Jesus was coming back tomorrow, I would garden.  I would not stop gardening to pray, because Jesus told me to garden, and it's just as holy as any spiritual rapture that I might experience. I just sat outside, enjoying this world.  Just being in the world.  Not doing anything spiritual, not talking to trees or animals, just being with nature as part of nature. Being part of the natural world.  I believe just being natural and a part of this natural world is just as Holy as one who retreats to the desert to pray for 100+ years.  Everything is included in God, even my garden.  Gnostic views about the world around me and my self led me to wrong thinking about my self and the world around me.  It's time we start thinking of our bodies as TEMPLES and this world around us as GOOD, because that's how God views it.  I told you guys this would be mostly rambling, and this was one of those rambling days.

Monday, May 13, 2013

Starting a new journey that I was always on

I am starting a new journey that I've been on for a while.  It sounds contradictory, but it's part of the human condition.  We are all destined to transform or evolve into the truth of who we are.  This is the road that we all must walk down, although so many refuse to walk down that road.  Most don't even try, some will start, but it seems very few will step into truth.  Truth.  If I asked you what being wrong felt like, you would tell me it felt negative. It felt embarrassing, humiliating, or sometimes shocking.  Well that's wrong.  Being wrong does not feel like anything.  It's when you find out you were wrong that those negative emotions are stirred up.  But being wrong feels like nothing because ignorance is the numbing medicine we all choose to swallow. I'm starting down a road to truth that I've always been.  I'm leaving my fear of being wrong behind me and in fact, I embrace the hope of new revelations of how wrong I was and how much better everything is than I imagined.  I'm going to start rambling here.  Mostly it's going to be about this spiritual journey, but I plan to ramble about every part of my life while I'm on this journey.  I want to post my everyday life and the revelation that I think will come from seeking truth in all things.  I can't imagine anyone having it all figured out, and I don't think I'll get there, but the idea of trying is an adventure I just can't pass up, and I hope that a lot of you will journey this with me.