Tuesday, March 30, 2010


As I was considering prospective titles for this post it occurred to me that all of the idea's I had were little more than just tired cliche's. Then, upon further reflection I realized how many of my other titles were also cliche's!

(note to self: Try to be more creative/interesting)

What makes this post different is that this time I'm intentionally writing about cliche's so therefore I've concluded that the only logical title is well, cliche...

Since I'm being predictable, I might as well start out with a proper definition of said title.


–noun1.a trite, stereotyped expression; a sentence or phrase, usually expressing a popular or common thought or idea, that has lost originality, ingenuity, and impact by long overuse, as sadder but wiser, or strong as an ox.

Ouch, that hurts! Especially that first word "trite" which seems to me to indicate something unimportant. Isn't it enough to be boorish, must I be insignificant as well? ~sigh~

For all of you newcomers, this is the part of the blog where I turn off of the main highway and steer you back along the small meandering pathway that eventually leads to the "profound" point I'm trying to make. And as is the case in both roads and reasoning, the more untraveled either of them are the more likely it is that you'll find a few pot-hole's in them. So try to insulate yourself from any hard or unyielding surfaces or belief systems you might be injured by and read on!

Why do so many anointed men of God seem to do a wipe out at some point in their life?

How many can you think of ? Of course most of us have either read or heard the story of King David, and of course there's Jimmy Swaggart and Jim Baker as well! Here's a few more that you may not be familiar with that I found interesting, people like Alexander Dowie or maybe Finis Jennings Dake. All of these men were used mightily by God and had incredible ministries only to fall prey to temptation and various publicly observed sins. It's happened so much that it's a cliche', man seeks God, God finds man, Gods Spirit empowers man, he get's a big head, takes advantage and starts believing in his own abilities granting himself certain "indulgences". It was pride that got Adam, apparently not much has changed in that pride still comes before the fall!

Solomon had this to say...

Ecclesiastes 8:14

There is a vanity which is done upon the earth; that there be just men, unto whom it happeneth according to the work of the wicked; again, there be wicked men, to whom it happeneth according to the work of the righteous: I said that this also is vanity.

If you're trying to figure out who's good and who's not based on the circumstances of this world you may find them in it probably won't make good sense! Perhaps That is the real vanity!

The great apostle Paul had a lot to say about mans weaknesses, and God's strength,

2 Corinthians 4:7

But we have this treasure in earthen vessels, that the excellency of the power may be of God, and not of us.

I've been told by people that they don't believe in using doctor's or medicines because they feel it makes a mockery of the atonement of Jesus. That it basically amounts to idolatry because it's putting those things in place of the healing that Jesus' victory over sin, sickness and death obtained for us. I agree that when Christian people are sick they should first do as the bible instructs us to do, be anointed and prayed over by their church elders but if you don't begin to get some relief pretty quickly I think you ought to see a doctor. Even though both drugs and doctors have been known to be BAD, I believe that God can work through them if He chooses to, and I don't think you can toss out the whole of medical science because you feel as though God is limited to healing us in any certain way. It seems spiritually prideful to me, like the guy who sat on top of his house during the flood waiting for God to rescue him...he turned away three different people trying to help him escape and of course he eventually drowned! Before God he asked, "where were you, I was waiting?" and God said. "I sent a guy in hip waders, then a boat, and even a helicopter! Why didn't you get in?'

God can't work through evil? Doesn't seem like He has much choice in this world!

1 Corinthians 1:27

But God hath chosen the foolish things of the world to confound the wise; and God hath chosen the weak things of the world to confound the things which are mighty;

I've heard this next one a lot, that all other versions of the bible besides the King James are basically heretical. Look into it, the research is compelling, lots of critical verses are severely butchered or omitted entirely. I personally prefer a KJV, because I believe it is the most accurate translation, but does that mean that the Holy Spirit can't move in a persons heart when they read the NIV or the Living Bible? I don't think so!

As stated in the definition a cliche is an expression that has lost originality, ingenuity, and impact by long overuse. If we're not careful our spiritual lives can also become just a cliche! We pray at certain times or in certain ways which are mostly just routine's that lack the vitality that having a real relationship with Christ should have. Inevitably, this superficial level of faith spreads to every aspect of what our Christian life is supposed to be about until even the most sacred becomes ritual and then a cliche'. That sounds horrible, and for sure it is, but even when we're at our worst, we serve a God that can clean the dirt, sticks and rocks out of the clay he wish's to use and then form it into a vessel suitable to be filled with His Spirit. It's never redundant or routine for God to love His children. Nothing God does is just a cliche', He causes the sun to rise every morning in a special way, He created each of us totally unique! I don't know about you but I'm bored with the cliche', I'm tired of the spiritual circle I seem to be running in and I want more! I don't just want to merely run in a "bigger circle" unless it's big enough for me to be able to continually step out and walk in places I've never been and do things I've never done! None of that will ever happen as long as our faith is a cliche' or until we drop the self righteous legalism and understand what it means to love!


Monday, March 22, 2010

It's About Time!

I can hear it already,

"It's about time? yeah it is...You haven't written a blog for three weeks and this is all you've got! I'm sorry but that's just weak"!

WOW! Give me a chance! Would it kill ya to have a little faith or to be a little more patient? Maybe YOU should do like I've been doing and embark upon a study of the life of Noah...

I feel as though I've seen a lot of things change during my short lifetime. We've become a "microwave society" who's tongue in cheek prayer is "Lord give me patience, but hurry!" We're used to having the "instant gratification" of our desires. We spend our lives watching thirty second commercials on television and then wonder why attention deficit disorder is so common! We've become a people that seek constant reassurance of our being on the "right track", it's a herd mentality and the message is "don't stop and eat the flowers"! We're not sure exactly where it is we're in such a hurry to go but hey, everybody seems to be going there and even if it is wrong it seemed like the right thing to do at the time...

Proverbs 16:25 There is a way that seemeth right unto a man, but the end thereof are the ways of death.

The story of Noah has always been one of the most fascinating in the Bible to me. As I read through one of the more well known parts of it I paused for a moment and reflected..

"How did God talk to Noah and tell him to build an ark?"

I know what it says in Genesis 6:13, God spoke to Noah, but at the risk of being allegorical I'm simply wondering...was it in an audible voice, or did God somehow just place the idea in his thoughts? Perhaps it was Noah's "inspired" conclusion based on his knowledge of Gods character and his observation of the pervasive moral depravity of his time that convinced him that God surely wouldn't let this go on indefinitely. Building the ark was based on the faith Noah had that God would do exactly what He said! At times I feel as though I'm building an ark and I can relate in some small way to Noah, however, I'm really glad to say that at least as far as my current venture is concerned I've never heard any voices that I attributed to God telling me what to do.

Maybe God had to speak directly to Noah because Noah didn't have a bible to read!

I read Gods word quite regularly and I continually try to understand the meaning of it and apply it to my life. Of course I'm a long way from reaching either goal, but so far what I've gotten from it is that it tells us to love, to go, do, and be, to the ends of the earth! Maybe just to the end of your block, or the edge of your town, wherever you find yourself if you're a child of God you're there on His time!

Hebrews 11:7 By faith Noah, being warned of God of things not seen as yet, moved with fear, prepared an ark to the saving of his house; by the which he condemned the world, and became heir of the righteousness which is by faith.

In 1 Peter it says that Noah preached to the people of his "time" for over one hundred years and yet the only people he took with him into the ark were the eight members of his immediate family! Can you imagine the ridicule he endured from the people who heard his warnings of coming destruction, saw the giant boat he was building on dry land and thought he was a fool? And from the perspective of the world he was a fool, right up to the time when the waters began to flood the earth!

Studying the life and ministry of Noah has really helped me to be more patient with what I feel is my calling from God. It's helped me to give everything over to Him, to have a stronger faith that He is in control of the circumstances of my life. To be peaceful and not be anxious when things work out differently than I might of expected or wanted them to. We all have the same two choices when that happens, we can respond emotionally, and become frustrated or discouraged at the "No" we seem to be experiencing or we can instead keep pressing forward looking for the better "Yes" that God has waiting for us!

Maybe it is about time, more than anything else in this country our most common ailment is "hurried sickness". There's not enough time for people to be able to "unpack" emotionally toward each other and really let them know how they feel. We hardly even understand the need for it but we certainly understand the unavoidable consequences of not doing it! Isn't it about time that we as the church, the "body of Christ", reached out with our arms, legs and anointed hands and showed this world Gods heart that's broken over the gulf of sin that separates them. We're living in a culture very similar to the times of Noah and I believe that one day soon God will once again shut the door behind those He will deliver from the coming deluge and the time of the Gentiles will come to a close...

It's about time!

Monday, March 1, 2010

A Peculiar People...

According to the Strong's Concordance, the word peculiar in the verse below actually means to be "preserved", to be an acquired people who have been bought by Christ. To me that sounds like a people who are His possession, who are by faith sustained and have put their trust in God alone and are the beneficiaries of His great promises. A people who are grateful, and who are eager to express their gratitude!

1 Peter 2:9 (King James Version)

But ye are a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, an holy nation, a peculiar people; that ye should shew forth the praises of him who hath called you out of darkness into his marvellous light

I read something recently I feel is related that really resonated with me.

"Jesus is looking for people who can display the fruit of the Spirit, not religious nuts"

Don't misunderstand me, I'm always interested to hear other peoples interpretation's of scripture and I try to keep an open mind because I definitely have a great deal to learn! I also greatly enjoy enthusiastic praise and worship that's done by people who're really seeking to glorify and praise God! I believe in the Holy Spirit and in the manifestation of His presence through the spiritual gifts. I'm a person who appreciates my freedom in Christ and fully extends that right to others, who's not trying to limit God, keep Him in a box, or reduce His blessing's to any formula.

What I'm attempting to describe here is something different, something along the lines of when peculiar becomes "Weird"...

I doubt that there's a single person who'll read this who doesn't know exactly what I mean! We've all known (or perhaps have been) people whose "Christian" beliefs are perhaps a little off the mainstream or even downright strange. And as we listen to them explain the biblical basis for their "revelation" or describe to us the angle that we must tilt our heads at to see it, somehow we just can't seem to shake the feeling that based on the lack of apparent "fruit" in their lives they must instead be "nuts". Have you ever noticed how little children seem to have an uncanny ability to recognize "weird" people and will instinctively get away from them? I'm not talking about people who just have a naturally off-beat personality, I'm talking about people whose weirdness is instead an intentionally contrived facade wrapped in a cloak of religiosity.

One thing that's been made very clear to me on my "spiritual journey" is that what I really find attractive are those Christians who display a committed, sustaining, genuine and balanced approach to their faith.

I just want to be an average person who's allowing God to do extraordinary things through me!

Everytime I encounter people who's belief's have more to do with emphasizing the differences between them and others it just seems as though the motivation is to glorify them, not God!

The God who's grace is responsible for them perhaps being any different than anyone!

I believe that what draws people to Christ is the expression of our empathy to them in that we openly recognize our own past and present "brokenness" while at the same time sharing with them what is our great hope in Christ in this moment and for eternity. That we've surrendered to the love and forgiveness of our Savior who while we were yet hopeless sinner's chose to die for our sin's to restore our souls and redeem us before the Father!

Now that's "Good News" everyone should be eager to hear!

1 Corinthians 1:2 (King James Version)

Unto the church of God which is at Corinth, to them that are sanctified in Christ Jesus, called to be saints, with all that in every place call upon the name of Jesus Christ our Lord, both their's and our's:

Sanctification is a process, and to be a saint of God is a choice...A choice that we're empowered to make through the Holy Spirit's presence in us! At some point in our walk we learn that there's only one rule, and that rule is love! It would help if we were taught that initially, it would save us from following those spiritual "rabbit holes" and from the discouragement of false starts.

I've been wanting to write about this subject for some time, maybe even years! It's based on the frustration I've felt as I see people being spiritually stalled by one particular issue or being in bondage to some doctrinal understanding that keeps them spinning in circles preventing them from moving forward and from being more effective ambassadors for Gods Kingdom.

I have a fantasy about being in Heaven and of the first moments of my realization of it. I'm talking to some people who confirm to me that "yes, I am in fact in Heaven" so naturally my next question is, "Where's Jesus?' to which they reply "Oh, that's Him over there talking to those people at the table" I spin around and scan the room noticing a man standing next to a table full of people, He's a man, in a glorified body just like me who manages to catch my glance and lock's eye's with me for just a moment and smiles. He excuses Himself and begins to walk toward me...and that's where the fantasy ends. It always makes my hair stand up on my neck and gives me chill bumps to think about someone who is the equal of God who loves me so much to not think it wrong to talk to me like just another person, who even though He IS too Holy chose to meet me and to reveal Himself to me.

Yes I know I'm peculiar, perhaps even weird! But I must admit I couldn't be happier about it!