Let’s Talk

Do you wish things were clearer in your life?  Are you stuck wondering “Why?”  What’s the solution?  Where’s some wisdom and peace of mind?   The “Jesus Story” reveals a very important principle.

In Luke 3, Jesus was baptized.  The story continues, “While He prayed, the heavens were opened.”

While He Prayed…The Heaven’s Were Opened

We do a lot of thinking about issues in our lives.  We try to reason things out.  God gave mankind a brain to use; But to be a servant of the human spirit.  When we are “born from above” we have access to superior laws. Unfortunately, we put most (if not all) of the weight on inferior laws.

The superior law is referred to as “the mind of Christ.”  Our natural powers of thought will always be in play (unless we’re dead).  However, we can “super-size” the power of our natural reasoning by appealing to the Lord for His thoughts on the matter.

If truth be told, there are many things that we are not actually conversing with God about.  We’re not taking advantage of one of our greatest connections to solutions.  We’re not actually talking things over with the Lord.

He’s standing right there at the door knocking.  He wants to fellowship with you about your life and the things that concern you.

Remember Jesus’ example:  When He prayed…the heaven’s were opened.

Gary

 

What’s Wrong With Me?

Have you ever asked yourself the question, “What’s wrong with me?”  You’ve probably asked the Lord that question, sincerely.  But, have you ever gotten a really satisfactory answer?

I prayed that prayer several years ago, and the Lord immediately responded.  His answer has helped me a great deal over the years.  That’s why I wrote the book.  As an digital e-book (which can be read on any digital devise like phone, pad, or computer, it’s currently on sale for only .99  To find out more about the contents and how they may bless you, too, just click on the image.   Be Blessed, Gary

The Kingdom of God and the United States Election

handsflag-280x595I have great hope for the Glory of God’s Kingdom and the United States 2016 Election.  

I didn’t say that I have great hope for everything to turn out according to my opinion of what is best.

I said, I have great hope for the Glory of God’s Kingdom and the United States Elections of 2016.  Not because of what is happening politically or from other natural factors.  But because I know that God is orchestrating many things in front of the scenes and behind the scenes.

I have great hope because God has made a promise to His people. “If you humble yourselves, pray, and turn from your wicked way…I WILL heal your land.”
I have great hope because God’s people have increasingly has been taking instructions and promises like that seriously.  It’s been happen.  It has already been happening – with ever growing numbers – for the past few years.
Too many of God’s own sons and daughters are stressing because they don’t have eyes to see what has been happening in prayer in and all over the world for America.

I have great hope because Tuesday’s Election doesn’t decide the truth. God’s promises do! The wheels are already in motion whether it’s the size of a man’s hand or in the mighty storm cloud releasing it’s rain.

I have great hope for the glory of God’s Kingdom and the United States of America!

Gary

What Is Reality?

glassesGod’s Kingdom on earth has the same nature as God’s Kingdom in heaven.

The atmosphere of God’s Kingdom is hope.

Not as in “wishful thinking.”  But as in confident anticipation.

There are two kinds of people in the way they approach living.  Glass half full people and glass half empty people.  Optimists and Pessimists.  Which are you?

The glass half empty folks (the pessimists) don’t like what I’m about to say, but faith and hope is more of a mental emotional challenge for them than it is for the glass half full people.

On the other hand, the glass half full folks can tend to sweep legitimate challenges under the rug and not give them the thought they are due.

Hope comes more naturally to a glass half full person.  They anticipate good more easily.  Glass half empty people lean toward seeing the possible problems.  They call it “being a realist.”

So, let’s look at that for a minute.  The only way that a person can define something as real is if there is proof. Proof isn’t possible until something has literally occurred.  Now, the realist will argue that they are looking at past evidence to draw a future conclusion.

However, that is a kind faith in operation.  That is applying Murphy’s Law (which is the opposite of hope),  The opposite of hope can only summon up fear.

Confused yet?

The point is that people who a pessimists and call it “being a realist” doesn’t understand what reality actually is and therefore they are constantly struggling and stressing over all the things that could go wrong.

To enjoy the abundant life of God’s Kingdom, one has to be thinking about all of the things that could go right.  That’s hope.  That inspires faith.

Be a true realist.  The true…the actual…the authentic realist is the one who believes, “I know the plans I have for you says the Lord.  Plans to prosper you and not harm you. Plans to give you hope and a future.”  (Jeremiah 29:11)

May your life be saturated with the half full glass of water!

Gary

When You Feel Like a Mess

90830d4d416563a3ed597771a3093caaI was taking a shower and thinking about some things that I had repented of and repeated over and over again ad naeseam.

Although I battle temptations and sins like every human being, I am referring more to my lack of consistency, procrastination, and follow through on things that are very important.

Discouraged with myself, I said, “Lord, I’m such a mess.”  Immediately I sensed the response in the middle of my chest, “But, you’re My mess.”  The words seemed to be coated in a warm layer of Fatherly love that caused my self disdain to melt away.

I listened to my heart to see if I sensed anything else He wanted me to know.  There wasn’t anything other than the idea that those five simple words of grace were enough.  I simply needed to accept them and be encouraged.  He said, “But, you’re My mess.”  He was identifying me as his own.  That is an endlessly profound revelation…if you take the time and pursue it.

What would it mean to you if you heard the most powerful, resourceful, wisest, richest, loving, and caring man on earth say to those around, “He/She’s My Son/Daughter?

Do you know Whose you are?  Have you ever really contemplated that?

Perhaps you would be better off to stop in your pursuit of doctrinal, theological accuracy and started focusing on what it means…really means to be God’s own child.

Ya know…My wife and I were just discussing this the other day.  We concluded that it was good to believe correct doctrine, but it was better to major on the majors and minor on the actual minors.  In so doing, let God sort out all your messed up theology.  (Because, you and I most likely have some…or a lot.)

But, you’re My mess!

Gary

 

No Shame Zone

o-guilt-shame-facebook-postThe Kingdom of God is a “No Shame Zone.”  Therefore, as a son or daughter of God, all thoughts that produce an emotional response of shame, are not the critique of Father, Son, or Holy Spirit.

Don’t filter through all the reasons why your feelings of shame are earned.  Reject it!  Turn you back on it!

What’s The Fruit?

Is the shame producing a desire to improve in that area of your life?

Does it bring on the twin emotion of…What’s the use…why try?

Does shame encourage hope?

Does it give you a sense of greater courage?

A common phrase when a child is being scolded is, “Shame on you.”  That rebuke is carried on into adulthood.  That is, therefore, the reason that many people struggle with self-doubt, feelings of guilt, and inner reactions of worthlessness, or self-condemnation.

But There’s Hope For Greater Confidence

I was bemoaning something in prayer one day.  I was in prayer so that’s a good thing, right?  Well…not so much if moaning is the language of your prayer life.  I said, “Lord, what’s wrong with me?”  It seemed like a legitimate question.  However, the Lord’s response was,

“I’m not going to talk to you about that.
Let’s talk about what’s right with you.”

At first, I didn’t think I actually heard the Lord’s response.  I thought it was pop psychology seeping through the walls of my soul.

However, I’ve learned – through a lot of trial and error – the “sound” of the Lord’s voice.  Those were His words to me.

My inner critic (my flesh) is well versed in the vocabulary of shame and takes every opportunity to block the encouraging words of the Lord.

The other day I was on the slippery slope of feeling shame about something.  The Lord spoke to me – in the shower no less – and said, “That’s not productive.  So, let’s move on.  You’re not evil.  You’re my son.”

I knew I wasn’t “evil” as we typically think of it.  But, the flesh gets very wiley.  If you look at the word evil when often used in scripture, it means depravity,  corruption of heart, or disposition to commit wickedness.  The emotion of shame takes me down that path.  I feel ill of myself.  Not well. Unsuitable.

Because of the freely imparted gift of grace, Jesus changed all that for me and gave me a new heart that is not evil.  In fact my new heart always wants to be a partner with Jesus and produce the best fruit the Kingdom of God has to offer.

Here’s The Mental Challenge

As good earthly citizens of Western culture, we are micro wave in our expectations.  We’ve been trained to look for the quick, easy fix.  We’ve come to believe that if we finally discover how to do it right everything will fall into place in a big way right here and right now.

It doesn’t work that way in God’s Realm.  The dominion of the Kingdom of God on earth is about “the seed.”  Care for the garden.  Plant the seed, and the garden will do the “heavy lifting” over the process of time designed for each unique seed.

Self Reflection:

Are you easily lured into the swamp of shame?
Is it productive?
Shall we stop submitting to the suggestions of the Evil One?
Instead, shall we take care of our grace garden and plant sonship seeds?

Happy Gardening!

Gary

 

Guaranteed Good Days

planI woke up in a funk.  I talked with the Lord, anyway.  I was hoping for a good day.  Then the Lord spoke (quickened a thought).

“Plan for a good day and you’ll have a good day.  That’s taking dominion.”

Hoping and Planning Are Not The Same

When I use the word hope here, it’s not actually the biblical definition.  That would be “confident anticipation.”  In this post, I’m using the term much the same way that we use it in our communication today.

From the perspective of scripture, planning would come before hoping (using hope as confident anticipation).

Hoping (as we usually say it today) is “wishful thinking.”  In this way a person can hope until (as my dad used to say) the cows come home.  Unless that hope is strong enough to motivate you to plan, it’s pretty much useless.

On the other hand…

Planning is a mental and physical activity that has the potential of getting you somewhere.  Let’s say I want to go visit my Dad in Des Moines.  And, I want to get there the quickest way.   Since I’ve gone to my Dad’s place many times, I already know the best way.  But, let’s say it was the first time.

I wouldn’t just get in my car, start the engine, back out of my drive, and start down the road.  I only do that when I want to go get something to eat. 🙂 

(ummm…not a good example on the going to eat thing.  Sorry, honey!)

But, let’s say my Dad lives in the same city but has changed addresses.  What do I do?  (a) Hope to get there quickly? – or –  (b) Plan by using a map, etc?

B wins!!  It did win…didn’t it??

Taking Dominion

Genesis 1:28 holds the principle that guarantees a good day:

“And God blessed them, and God said unto them, Be fruitful, and multiply, and replenish the earth, and subdue it: and have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the fowl of the air, and over every living thing that moves upon the earth.”

In the original thought of God, dominion has the idea of designing, setting in order, and guiding to completion.  It does not have the meaning of being a dictator.

A Word About Good

You may ask, “But what if bad things happen during the day you’ve planned to be good?”   Guess what?  We live in a real world that is broken and bad things happen to good people.  The thought wasn’t …and you’ll have a perfect day.

Things don’t have to be without flaw to be good.

For too long too many people let “life happen to them” instead of them “happening to life.”  Happening to life is as simple as beginning to take dominion.  Set out a plan.  It would be surprising if everything fell into place perfectly.  However, if you don’t know what the pieces are and are only floating along on a wish and a prayer (a prayer that is more of a verbalized wish), then you’ll never really know if you accomplished a good day or not.

Emotionally Good

You may be a person who judges the quality of their day primarily on an emotional response to it as to whether it was “good” or not.  But, there’s a better way.  Give yourself the opportunity to accurately judge the quality of your day by specifics that were accomplished.  When you approach your day that way, the emotions will fall in line.

Here’s to good Kingdom Days by taking dominion over them.

Have a good day 🙂

Gary