Kingdom of God “P” Words

Praise PrayerThe Kingdom of God on earth has a distinctive, recognizable atmosphere.  That tone or mood will be discovered within the realm of two “P” words:

 

Praise

Praise, at it’s core, is an attitude and expression of highest gratitude and thanksgiving for God and for each other.  It’s not a matter of thanking and praising Him FOR every negative circumstance and trial of life, but WITHIN or IN SPITE of them.  It is the intentional attitude of recognizing that nothing is beyond God’s authority and ability to resolve and restore.

Prayer

As with praise, prayer has often been reduced to definitions that are not untrue, but are far from complete.  It simplest terms, prayer can be described as man talking to God and God communicating with man.  In reality, prayer is as complex and full of powerful potential as the idea of active two way communication itself.   For me, personally, it has been helpful to think of prayer as having truthful connection with God where I am always learning and perceiving the wisdom of His mind, and heartbeat of His love.  Of all forms of communication in life, meaningful contact with God is of the highest and utmost importance.

Naturally Supernatural

I believe the breath of the Kingdom of God trumps all in my considerations and movements in my life.  Without both of those in full measure, the Kingdom of God is just another among many useless doctrines of religion.

Gary

The Anger Train

Anger.001

I know there’s a ton of stuff that sucks…the REALLY.BIG.ROCKS!  Gas is $4 freakin’ dollars a gallon.  Grocery items…(oh, let’s not get started on that one).   And then there’s all the political crap!  AARRRG!!  it makes you angry, d#%n it! 

On top of all that, the images of suffering innocents abound…slammed right in our faces through instant media access.  Our.Emotions.Are.Raw.

So, what are we to do?

We have to get off the anger train! 

It takes good old fashioned (grow a pair) guts to jump off the train.

Many folks have been angry long enough that the anger train has built up momentum.  You can feel the hot air blowing in your hair.  The scenery of life is getting more and more blurred.  The clickety-clack of the next injustice announces its presence at a faster pace.

Don’t get me wrong.  The motivation for the anger is logical and many times feels moral.  You would not have climbed aboard if it weren’t.

Here’s the thing…the anger train that so many are riding (and that I am definitely tempted to board) is not changing one single circumstance. The prices are not coming down at the pump or in the grocery isle.  Politics.  Regardless of the party or arena, the root of politics has been a nemesis to true justice for…well…forever.  Don’t forget.  Politics and government are not the same thing.

Oh, by the way…angry Facebook posts and a “stand for righteousness” is also not the same thing.

“Holding on to anger is like grasping a hot coal with the intent of throwing it at someone else; you are the one who gets burned.” 

Be Angry And Sin Not

“Be angry and sin not.  Do not let the sun go down on your wrath.”  Ephesians 4:26

That would seem to contradict my whole argument, wouldn’t it?  Depends.  How do we know if the anger we feel is righteous anger?

In a nutshell, righteous anger doesn’t separate us from faith in God.  Righteous anger isn’t a response to fear of loss.  Righteous anger motivates one to seek God as a first priority.  Righteous anger doesn’t make you or I ugly and difficult to be around.  Righteous anger is short lived.  It’s not allowed to have a life of it’s own.

So, let’s circle back around to the beginning.

It’s time to get off the anger train.  It’s time to get aboard the train of trust.  Through communion with God, see how He’s responding to life.  Work at envisioning what it would look like in your life if you could actually trust Him with everything that concerns you.

Here’s a great antidote that will help you jump off the anger train with a soft landing.  Spend time every day listing things you are thankful for.  Ride the Praise Train.  Seriously…

Thankfulness and praise keeps the heart flexible and able to receive necessary wisdom and creativity. 

Gary