Wednesday, November 30, 2011

The Truth about Love

In Corinthians 13, we are told that without Charity we can do NOTHING. Charity is love in action. It is translated from the same word as love. It is a part of God's love. Charity gives us a clearer sense of the word that it isn't just an 'idea' of love but that it is a love that causes us to GIVE and to give sacrificially, expecting NOTHING in return.

The Bible is true and if it says that without charity we can do nothing and anything that we do is worthless, like a tinkling cymbal or sounding brass-then guess what? We can do NOTHING without it. The Word also talks about the Church that has left its first love. That CHurch got itself into a bad situation. Now, I didn't write this down just to say, "See, this is why we must have more sermons on the topic of love" No, no, no. It is not that simple by a long shot. Even sermons on love and charity are not the answer. The point is, there must be love. First, we must know the love of God (we only love Him because He first loved us) and secondly, we must love God back-which will happen as we get a clear look at His love.

It might seem simple, but it is essential. What lasts forever? What is the greatest of all things? What is at the TOP of every Biblical list of 'virtues' ....Charity, or love. Without it, we got nothing. I have dealt with sooooOOOOOooOOOoooooo many people over the years who come to Church looking for help, and you spend time with um, you pray with um, you teach n preach u counsel, u try n help, you do everything you can but does it magically fix their lives? No. Because when the rubber meets the road, they are NOT filled with a love for God. So many people come to the Church like they're signing up for public assistance. :( this is so sad, because it isn't that God doesn't want to help you, HE does want to help you but the ONLY thing that CAN help you is a relationship with HIM but if all you're looking for is quick fixes to get YOUR way in life, you've come to the wrong place and you've brought the wrong attitude. That's why Jesus said that He that will gain His life must first lose it! Because in seeking to gain for yourself, you'll gain nothing, but when you give it up for Jesus, you end up gaining everything!

So many people say yeah, I don't think it's true Micah. Because I went to Church. I sang the songs, heard the sermons and read the Book, and it didn't help me. Ahhh, but you see, that's the problem. It has nothing to do with the sermons and the songs and the reading, and the attendance, what's supposed to happen, is you're supposed to fall in love with the one who wrote the Book, inspired the sermons and is being sang about! You've gotta fall in love with Jesus, you've gotta come to Him, you've gotta realize that He ISN"T some mean ogre in the sky, but that He actually loves you beyond imagination..He died for you, He rose again for you, His blood can make you clean and you can belong to Him. He wants to be a Father to you, He wants to be a Healer to you, He wants to be a Saviour to you, He wants to be a Comforter to you, He wants to be a Shepherd to you and yes, He wants to be Lord and Master to you. He wants a REAL relationship and friendship with you. He doesn't wanna be Santa Clause, He doesn't wanna be a gene where u just rub the lamp and make ur wishes and carry on, He doesn't wanna be a socialist.communist government to you so you can get your public assistance and carry on, no-He doesn't offer those kind of cheap, shallow solutions, He offers a real, authentic relationship with Himself that will utterly transform your life. ANYTHING less than that is just pretense and false religion and it won't help you, it wont fulfill you and eventually you'll walk away, give up, self-destruct AND you'll probably blame Church, your PAstor and ultimately God. It's so heartbreaking. And ALL you needed to do was get to know Jesus. No one is saying you cant enjoy your cars and your houses and your family and your job and your fishing and your hunting and your hobbies etc etc etc, but when they're your god, it doesnt leave any room for the real God. And if you think you can 'play' the real God so He can help you get what you want out of the gods you worship. It doesn't work out well for anyone :( God loves you, do you love Him back?

Saturday, November 26, 2011

Kindness Revolution

Spent a good deal of time this week re-reading the Gospels. I've had times where I had a hard time understanding the teachings of Jesus and felt I could connect more with the Epistles. But I feel like I am coming to understand much more of what Jesus was trying to teach us.

The 'Godlen Rule' especially jumps out at me now. I know that humanity is NOT going to embrace complete righteousness in our communitites until Christ returns---but that makes perfect sense, you see-I have always been told that the sermon on the mount for example is Kingdom teaching and that that is how the world will be run int he Millenial Kingdom, but I never thought much about it now I see it more clearly then ever-our Saviour and Creator TOLD us ALL exactly HOW we COULD actually live the way we were meant to, not just as individuals but as a society. Will we follow it and enter into a utopia? No. But He has shown us that HIS way i the best way and when He finally returns He will demonstrate this! When Jesus reigns, the world will be run how it was SUPPOSED to be. Talk about a Revolution. All of these poor Arabs are having revolutions that just end in more blood-shed and persecution BUT if the WHOLE world started following the "Golden Rule" we'd have a Jesus Revolution, a Kindness Revolution. Crime would stop. Dishonesty in business would stop. If we SINCERELY asked ourselves, is this how I would want ot be treated EVERY time we did something. It reminds me of that book "In his steps". Just what would ACTUALLY happen if a whole community said "What Would Jesus Do?" every time they made a decision? Wow! Do you see it? Do you feel the profoundness of it? Once, I didn't. Once, it was lost on me. But now it is so clear. Jesus had the answer to ALL social problems. Love thy neighbour. Treat others as you'd like to be treated. That is it. It is that simple.

We don't see the importance f it because we lie to ourselves. We tell ourselves we don't care how we're treated. We say oh I wouldnt mind if someone treated me this way or that way. But the truth is we ALL love ourselves and we'd all aprreciate beign treated with honor and respect and thoughtfulness, kindness and consideration. Respect is the Christian way. Kindness is the Christian way. Good manners are Christian! Being courteous is Christian! Serving others is Christian! Giving is Christian. Compassion is Christian. Because it is what our Master taught us to do. And He didn't just tell us, He showed us. He took the time to call Martha by her NAME> She wasn't just some woman, another lemming, another nameless follower, she was Martha, someone he cared for. He healed people that were sick. He fed the hungry before He sent them away. He washed His disciples feet. He laid down His life for others. Jesus is the greatest Minister. He came to Minister to us! Thank You Jesus! You are awesome!   

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

The Truth About Satan

I've known a lot of Bible-thumpers who are convinced that the Devil wants to steal children's souls through the use of pokemon cards and Harry Potter books! They warn against these evil ploys of Satan & encourage lots of paranoia and protectionism to keep us all safe from the Devil ruining our families!

I cannot help but imagine that the Devil himself laughs at this type of stuff. You sit there all self-satisfied that you've protected yourself and your family from the Devil because you dont have no 'new age' music, you dont go to Lily Dale and get your palms read, you don't celebrate Halloween (the Devil's B-Day? LOL) you don't let your kids read Harry Potter etc. You think Pentegrams are scary-a pentegram is nothing but a design, Harry Potter is a make-believe children's story, and pokemon cards, oh geez, do I really have to distinguish that with a response?

The Devil THRIVES on your anger, your bitterness, your harsh words, the ways that you act that HURT your family or make your children feel small and un-loved. He doesn't need you to be drawing pentegrams and calling yourself a warlock. He is perfectly pleased and has you right in his grasp when you are self-righteous, self-satisfied, mean-spirited, and small.

A part of me would like to get into relevant details. BUt I'm trying to resist that temptation, partially because often the ways in which your own family plays into the Devil's hands can be unique to your family and if I bring up an example, you'll just excuse your own practices.

My point is this-wake up and stop being so out of touch. There are HORRRRIBLE things happening to people in this world every day and most of them don't have anything to do with Harry Potter! WHy not take a stand against slavery and persecution in the middle-east and Africa? WHy not take a stand against child abuse and mind control practiced by so many sickos in this country? WHy not try to help those who are struggling with addictions or depression? Why not help the fatherless and the widows and the poor?

Satan is waging war on us, and we THINk were fighting back as we wage war on imaginary enemies like pokemon cards! LOL Poeple even write books about this stuff. Are you kidding me? People are struggling, people who have been raped or beaten or thrown onto the streets, people who have been addicted to alcohol and heroine. People who have real problems. People are suicidal and depressed. And what do we offer them> Often we offer them so cheap, superficial, platitudes about being strong and toughening up and just remember God doesn't give you anything to tough for you to handle and just move on! I've even seen some Christians REBUKE someone for being depressed and tell them to snap out of it. You don't have 10 minutes to comfort the depressed but you'll spend hours ranting about pokemon cards? lol Insanity! That's what it is. People don't need to burn their books and movies and cards, and 'straighten out' they need to have the Love of God and the Gospel of Jesus Christ shared with them!

God knows the deep, hidden, misunderstood things that dwell deeeeep inside of you that are hurting you and messing you up and He wants to heal and forgive all of it! The word says He heals all of our diseases, and it is talking within the context about our SOUL's diseases. This sinful world has poisoned and diseased ALL of our souls But GOD can and will HEAL your soul!

We like to play tough, but if you're a human being you are hurting. To exist in this earth means to know suffering, to know the sin nature, to know this fallen reality. We are all hurting, we all have problems and Jesus came here to rescue us, to seek and to save that which was lost. He wants to redeem you, to buy you back from sin, and the Devil and this world-by His blood-to purchase you and make you His and make you free and forgiven. That's what the whole world needs to know. None of us are born into this world whole. We have a hole in our hearts. But God can make you whole and complete and healed. Look to Jesus, He purchased a brann new life for you on the cross of Calvary and He rose again from the grave. He is at the throne of God the Father right now, and He is reaching out to you by the Power of His Spirit, saying come to me all ye that labour and are heavy laden and I will give you rest. It was prophecied that Jesus, the Messiah-would come to heal the broken hearted and to set the captives free! That is the truth the enemy of your soul doesn't want you to know! And that is the truth that is the weapon against all of his lies!

Saturday, November 19, 2011

Real Life

God loves me so much! lol And He loves you too, dear reader :)

How do I put this? I can be a REAL mess! Seriously, if any of you have seen me at my worst, and some of you have-it isn't pretty! I don't always have a good attitude. I'm NOT the best example. Heck, someone called me one of their 'spiritual mentors,' today-And I won't lie to you, it made me feel so.....I don't know what the word is, humble,......ashamed? Unworthy? I don't know. Even though I LOVE to share my thoughts, even though I am a Sunday School teacher....I often have nagging thoughts that say, Micah, if you're leading people, face it-they deserve better! :( that makes me sad, and in a sense, it's probably true. I mean there are and have been Christian leaders with much more wisdom, character and consistant attitudes than me. But I have to say this, in my defense, sort of....lol

I think God can use me in all of my imperfections and emotional roller-coasters to teach other people around me and to share with them the fact that you do not have to be super-Christian to experience the wonders of God's love! DOn't get this wrong. I honestly believe in my heart that God wants to bring me to new heights of spiritual maturity. I have a strong desire to be more level-headed, and more 'spiritual.' But I also know that God has a perfect plan and He knows I am going to fall before I do-nothing takes Jesus by surprise, and yet here I am. You know why? God's strength is made perfect in weakness. He is going to use my flaws, my vulnerabilities, my bad experiences, my sorrows, bad memories, hurts and pains,...He is going to use all of them for good, He is going to redeem them. Check out ROmans 8:28 people! Do we believe it?

I have known some sorrow in my life. I have some big broken pieces in my heart. But I'm still here. Having a broken heart is not necessarily a bad thing! I'm not saying it feels good. It hurts, But that doesn't make it bad. If you're convinced it is all bad, u may let it harm you but if you accept it, your broken-ness can make you whole! Isn't that such a paradox? But it's true. I can't feel and understand God's soothing, healing, comforting power like I do if I am not broken first. In my brokenness, God expresses and shows His love in new ways. I get closer to Him and I have more compassion and love for others.

Some of my friends are going through such low valleys tonight. One good friend is dealing with the passing of her own mother. The heartbreak is just more than one can imagine. I have not been down the road she is on and all I can do is pray and trust God to take care of her.

I think more and more of Christ. NO one human being can understand ALL that your sorrow intails. Except Jesus. He understands. He is touched with the feeling of our infirmities. He knows exactly what were going through, He has been through it all and more.

Was it BAD for Jesus to endure such loss on the cross? No, it was a great good that He did.

Was it BAD for Jesus to sweat drops of blood in the Garden of Gethsemane while He prayed to the Father?

Was it bad for Him to greet Judas, the man who was betraying Him?

Was it wrong for Him to say Father, forgive them for they know not what they do...? No, it was all good. NOT easy, but good.

And three days later when He rose in joy and victory, was He sorry? No. He was glad at the joy that was set before Him! Jesus would never regret the awesome choice that He made.

We often also face our own type of Gethsemane. Another question; was Jesus sinning when He cried My God My God why hast Thou forsaken me? Get this, a lot of people who have a rigid sense of what spirituality is, would probably be the first ones to say, now Jesus, don't be upset. Everything is going to be fine in 3 days, no need to be sad......  You see, Jesus gives us our example for EVERYTHING for our lives. He shows us how to treat others, how to fight the Devil, how to work, He lived the perfect life---and He shows us how to suffer too. It is NOT a sin to be upset. It is not a sin to cry. It is not a sin to be sad. You are not disqualified from the ministry because you have sorrow. Jesus had sorrow. 

Jesus also had joy. It says because of the joy that was set before Him He despised the shame and endured the cross, in other words compared to the joy of our salvation the shame meant little to Him.

Do you feel like you are a trainwreck? Do you feel like you have baggage that needs to be dealt with? Do you feel your emotions are erratic? Do you feel like you need to get it together, or you're a bad example....etc? Guess what? God still loves you and He wants to use you. He can use a broken person. He breaks a pot and makes it new. He is the Potter. He even says He has respect for a broken heart and a conrite spirit. You may feel that you have nothing to offer in your brokenness, when in fact-you are at a great spot for God to o something amazing! God takes broken lives, broken hearts and broken situations----and uses them to make miracles!

SO many people are LOOKING so hard for the perfect family, the perfect Church, the perfect job, the perfect life, the perfect Pastor, the perfect youth group, the perfect Bible study so that they can finally do something for God----but ALL you need is a perfect Saviour and He will do it all. Lift up your situation to Him and watch Him work. Stop waiting for everything to be just so-thinking that then God will be able to work, stop having the ideal situation in your thinking......was it ideal for Saul to want to kill the new King God anointed? Was it ideal for Jacob's sons to sell their brother into slavery? Was it ideal for Sarah to have Isaac in her 90's? Was it ideal for Moses to be born in the middle of a massacre? Was it ideal for the Messiah to be born with a bunch of barn animals? God doesn't work with the ideal-He works with human beings like me and you in REAL life. He loves you.




God loves you

I have so much to learn, not academically but deep inside. I've been learning more and more what are the imolications of God's amazing love, but I find a  lot of the times my own actions and attitudes are just not expressing that love. I have to get some of what I'm understanding on the surface to puh down deeper into my attitude and my thoughts and my heart.

As I sit and just meditate on the Beatitudes, or the Golden Rule, or the crucifixion itself-or other scenes from the Gospels like when the woman washed Jesus feet with her tears and anointed Him---I get to just....allowing myself to recognize all of the emotions contained in those scenes. The beauty, the boldness, the scandal even, of the love that was shown in the life of the Christ. 

What is Jesus like? According to the Scriptures? He let John lay on His chest. He lifted up the children in His arms and blessed them. He drove the moneychangers who were cheating people and taking adavantage of them out of the Temple. He taught the people about this living Father in the story of the prodgical son, He had compassion on the multitude. He cried at Lazaruses' tomb,..He was a man of sorrows, well acquainted with grief. Jesus is a man of feeling and passion. He knows ALL of the sorrows we face and then some! He has known so much sorrow and pain and loss. Yet He is risen in victory and prays for us all now at the right hand of the Father. 

It is of great comfort to think that this man who is also the Creator and Lord of all, and is Wisdom incarnate, full of power and glory-is touched with our infirmities and cares so much for us. The Bible says He came to set the captives free and to heal the broken hearted-isn't that cool? I mean when you REALLY think about it, the Creator, the All-Mighty, the one who it says we would be at the beginning of wisdom to fear, He left the glory of Heaven and came down here to do what? To receive glory and worship & claim His rightful place on this earth with all of us grovveling at His feet? No, not exactly. He came out of love and concern for us, for our well-being. He came to seek and to save that which was lost. He came to help us. He came on a rescue mission.

That just gets me in my heart. I understood God as someone to be taken seriously and reverenced for a long time, but I'm not sure if I was really get a handle on the fact that the most powerful, wise, all-knowing, completey worthy Being that exists....a Creator infinitely beyond comprehension-wants GOOD for me, loves me, delights in me, sees me, hears me, knows me. Such knowledge is too wonderful for me :) For us all.

meh, this pain pill is making it so hard to finsih my thoughts, i have this infection in my glands right now, so im gonna come back n try to finsh this though. God bless u all. Remember, God loves you!

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

TRUTH AND FREEDOM

God has been teaching me so much, yet I've never felt so....human. I don't feel like Joe spiritual, or everybody's mentor. And you know what. That's okay, I don't have ANY reason to try and project some image of myself being any further along than you are. You have flaws. I have flaws. God loves me. I say this because I've noticed that for years I've felt afraid to be vulnerable in admitting my own weaknesses or areas where I don't have everything figured out. And that has held me in bondage.
Part of the reason for this COULD be that when I was a young kid attending Sunday School at Pleasant Valley Baptist Church-when I shared some of my own feelings and vulnerabilities with my sunday school teacher, I was derided and put down for it. Sadly, many, even some well-meaning people-will judge you and put you down or make you feel bad or give you some spiritual platitude the moment they see a sign of weakness from you. But the Spirit of God brings freedom and perfect love casts out fear. God knows your vulnerable and hurting and damaged areas of life even better than you do and despite what some pseudo-pious people would lead you to believe, He never asked us to put on a facade and pretend were something we aren't. God accepts me when I am hurting. He doesn't tell me to get my crap together and then come back when I'm ready. No He is my great Physician and my COunsellor. He is the one who is going to fix me up and heal me. He is not emberassed to embrace this special needs child and give me the nurture and instruction that I need.

I was once one who believed that "Psychology" is one of the great evils of the world because of all of the misguided, blame-your-mother, freudian treatment methods, as well as the sometimes over-medicated society we live in BUT I have realized this, we can no more REJECT the science of 'psychology' because of unscriptural theories than we can reject 'Biology' because of the unscriptural theories of darwinism. Piaget and Freud may not have the answers for you BUT the Great Physician and the True Counsellor=DOES! And I am not too afraid of being called a heretic to acknowledge this.

Romans says we need to renew our minds, Philippians says we need to control our thinking, Psalms tells us we will be blessed when we meditate of God's laws. All through the Bible we are taught the TRUE path to healing of the mind, yet ultra-pious fanatics would want us to completely neglect these great blessings of God and replace them with shallow platitudes and Church slogans.

A PROPER and Scriptural understanding of your self-worth IN CHRIST will deliver you from your inferiority complex!

A deep understanding of the Gospel will deliver you from unhealthy fears.

A proper understanding of God's love with deliver you from the fear of abandonment (Perfect love casteth out fear)

All sorts of distortions and misunderstanding and lies of the Devil that damage our mind and emotions can be healed by the Word of God as taught to us and applies to our hearts by the Holy Ghost of God.

We are to buy the truth and sell it not! The truth will make you free. I value the truth and it doesn't matter if it fits into someone's idea of a good sermon or not, the truth is, JESUS loves you more than you could ever fathom and He values you and He doesn't see you as worthless scum-He has made us holy and acceptable by the blood of His Son. Why do you think the GOSPEL is so scandalous to the religious establishment? Get back to the Gospel, in all of its power and glory, it is the answer, even to the questions that the psychologists are asking.

Monday, November 14, 2011

Boundaries & Decision Making In Psalm 1

Every responsible person knows how to set some boundaries in his/her life.

A fence or a wall in a totaliterean nation is there to oppress, but such a burrier in a free nation is there for different reasons, It is very easy for one who prizes freedom to see boundaries as an obstacle, but certain boundaries actually afford us our freedom-I have the boundary of my own skin so I know where I end and the rest of the world begins.

The same firearm that empowers an oppressor or robber, can be used by a responsible citizen or officer of the law to defend and protect. So it is with good boundaries.

As one builds up a life & a family, they need to have some direction and planning in who and what is going to impact and influence them.

Another good example of Scriptural boundary-keeping is this 'keep' or guard...'thy heart with all diligence for out of it are the issues of life' 

I have the freedom to decide who and what will influence and control me and my life. I must be responsible with this freedom and use it for good by seeking wholesome and helpful influence and avoiding the bad. This principle of blessing is spelled out for us in Psalm1. ALWAYS REMEMBERING PSALM 1 recently helped me in making some very important decisions.

When ur making decisions, ask yourself this; am I being scornful or listening to those who are scornful? Am I listening to the advice of the ungodly? Am I headed in the same direction as sinners? Find the source of your motivation, influence and advice and press it up against the truths of Psalm 1.

This may seem like the simplest message I've ever expressed on here, but some day, it will be of unspeakable value.

Sunday, November 6, 2011

The Truth Is Out, There Is A Leak, A Spiritual Informant, A Spy, A Narc, A Recon Mission for Liberty

"Give me liberty or give me death" -Patrick Henry

Fear is the enemy, my friends. Patrick Henry was tapping into some reckless abandon, which brings freedom. He was saying ya know what, if we gotta live in slavery just so we can have safety than life aint worth living anyways. I'd rather die than be a slave! Gimee liberty or death! That's the attitude that will win us freedom! Because if you have fear you truly are in bondage. Fear and intimidation are the ULTIMATE weapon that abusers use AND TRUTH AND COURAGE are our ways of fighting back. Arm yourself with the truth and have the courage to never back down!

I'm not backing down! I know I've made some "Enemies" lately. I know I'm at the top of some people's 'crap list.' But I'm okay with that :) and by the grace of God, I'm learning to not be eaten up by anger or unforgiveness but ALSO not to mistake meekness for weakness. I won't be veangeful, I won't be sadistic, I wont be wrathful, but I won't tolerate and condone evil either.

We ALL have our faults. And redemption and reconciliation i available for EVERYONE. I long for it and pray for it.

But I have had my eyes opened so wide now! I have seen the light. There is so much abuse, oppression, slavery, bondage and condemnation that we tolerate and justify by some warped, twisted, mistaken sense of morality and right. For example, so many people justify harsh, harmful, sadistic behavior from parents towards their children in the name of discipline. But all that is-is a cloak for ther maliciousness! Open your eyes! WWJD? Does God treat us that way when we mess up? No. You may say "they're my children." NO, they aren't. NO human being owns another human being. NO ONE! They are God's children and He has entrusted them into your stewardship and care so you can look out for them and nurture and provide and raise them, they are not posessions!

I have seen oppressors in so many different positions employ so many different methods of control and manipulation. If you're, like I was, a tad bit naive, you just do not realize how full of power abuse this world is, but once you recognize the power structure, you'll see that a lot of behavior that you take at face value, and don't examine, is actually quite insidious.

I feel called, my eyes couldn't have been opened to this for NO reason. I feel called to stand up for the helpess, speak up for those without a voice, be an advocate for the vulnerable, defend the helpess.....this is why I am working very hard to finish the book I am writing on bullying and manipulation tentatively titled "Manifesto of the Abused"

This book looks at the issue of the abuse and the importance of TRUE spiritual liberty in this generation. We look at it from family life, to Churches, to governments and communities and even to your own personal spirituality. These concepts and principles apply to so many different areas, it is truly amazing. The basic premise of the whole thing is simply this "Where the Spirit of the Lord is there is liberty" God's presence brings freedom. God wants us to be free. So if there is bondage, slavery, oppression, abuse, bullying, or intimidation-----the will of God is not being accomplished and HE wants to set you free. The TRUTH will set you free, and thats why from my blog to my book to my life I wanan spread the TRUTH everywhere I can so freedom can ring all over! Remember also that Jesus said He came to set the captives free! What captivates you? What are you a slave to? Who are you afraid of? Who intimidates you? Who scares you? He makes you feel condemned and beaten down? God doesn't want that for you. He wants you to be free!

The ULTIMATE slave-masters are the ones who live in your mind. The ones who read the paragraph above this one and say No No No No, that Micah is going in a weird direction, I Don't know about him, do you think he's getting liberal? I mean, I'm preeeety sure God wants me to feel guilty and condemned so I can stay humble ; ) you see, those little imps of Hell that live in your mind are what really hold you back from enjoying your freedom in Christ and soaking up His love!

God loves you and in ROmans 8 He says if God gave us His only Son how shall He not also freely give us all things! Try reading Romans 8 and looking at the GOD presented there and see if the God of Romans 8 is the same God as the one you've been believing in. God isn't a bully. And when your abusers try n tell you God gave them permission to treat you like their property, tell them to go back to their father, the father of lies.