Tag: love God

A Bad Taste

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“I know you inside and out, and find little to my liking. You’re not cold, you’re not hot – far better to be either cold or hot! You’re stale. You’re stagnant. You make me want to vomit.” (Revelation 3:15 MSG)

“Stay alert! Watch out for your great enemy, the devil. He prowls around like a roaring lion, looking for someone to devour.” (1 Peter 5:8 NLT)

Ok, followers of Jesus Christ. Here’s the deal:

…you and I have a relationship with both Jesus AND the devil.

Please don’t swear at me; it’s not becoming.

We’re either loving God, AND the things He loves, or we’re compromising. Compromise plays right into the devil’s hand. 

Our relationship with God, through Jesus, is a family relationship. We are born of God. His sons and daughters.

Our relationship with the devil is an adversarial relationship. He is NEITHER family nor friend. He’s not a friend of our Father, and Father does not hire him to give us schooling on particular subjects (like patience).

There is NO communion between light and darkness. 

But sometimes we ignore that truth and begin to live in a confused state. That’s when Jesus speaks to us in a not so friendly tone.

Jesus told the Laodicean church (the cream-of-the-crop, best-of-everything, we’re-the-cutting-edge, pay-attention-‘cuz-we’re-good group) that, basically, they made Him sick.

“You make me want to vomit”, is how He put it.

That’s just the kind of stuff the devil, our adversary, loves to hear Him say.

However…

As we remember that God is our Father and the devil is our adversary, and not confuse the two, the Lord embraces us while the devil becomes sick to his stomach.

Sweet!

The Father loves you; live in the power of His love.

The devil hates you; give him all the more reason to be upset with you by acting like the Son of God.

Either the devil will spit you out of his mouth, or Jesus will. Depends on how you’re living, and who you’re trusting.

Embrace God’s way of living; leave a bad taste in the devil’s mouth.

Clothed and Rubbed

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“The Spirit of the Lord God is upon me,
because the Lord has anointed me
to bring good news to the poor;
he has sent me to bind up the brokenhearted,
to proclaim liberty to the captives,
and the opening of the prison to those who are bound;
to proclaim the year of the Lord’s favor,
and the day of vengeance of our God;
to comfort all who mourn;
to grant to those who mourn in Zion –
to give them a beautiful headdress instead of ashes,
the oil of gladness instead of mourning,
the garment of praise instead of a faint spirit;
that they may be called oaks of righteousness,
the planting of the Lord, that he may be glorified.” (Isaiah 61:1-3 ESV)

Isaiah, the prophet, heard these words in his spirit about 700 years before they were quoted by Jesus (in Luke 4):

“The Spirit of the Lord is upon me,
because he has anointed me
to proclaim good news to the poor.
He has sent me to proclaim liberty to the captives
and recovering of sight to the blind,
to set at liberty those who are oppressed,
to proclaim the year of the Lord’s favor. ”

And he rolled up the scroll and gave it back to the attendant and sat down. And the eyes of all in the synagogue were fixed on him. And he began to say to them, “Today this Scripture has been fulfilled in your hearing.” (Luke 4:18-21 ESV)

“Today this Scripture is fulfilled…”

The Spirit of the Lord God, as referred to by Isaiah and Jesus, is the power of God to change lives. Also called “The Anointing”, the Spirit of God opens spiritual eyes and ears to understand the good news; the good news of God’s availability to mankind through the finished work of his Son, Jesus Christ. The work of his Son includes mending broken hearts, deliverance from demonic spirits and influences, physical healing, forgiveness, and the hope of eternity with him.

God desires to “anoint” his people today with the power of the Spirit of God. He speaks of being “anointed” by the Spirit like one would talk of putting on clothes.

“And behold, I am sending the promise of my Father upon you. But stay in the city until you are clothed with power from on high.” (Luke 24:49 ESV)

Also, to “anoint” is to rub, or rub into (kind of like rubbing Ben Gay into a sore muscle).

I’ve met people who seem to think “the Anointing” is for everyone who asks. Do I agree?

Uh, well, yes and no.

No one can earn the anointing, that’s for sure. And God DOES want to fill everyone, and clothe everyone with his “power from on High”. But their is at least 2 requirements to living an anointed, God-filled life.

Requirements?

The first is rather simple. An easy “hoop” to jump through. Actually, Jesus did the jumping for us. Receiving Jesus as our Lord and Master is our first requirement.

The second one is where a lot of potential candidates seem to drop off. If you’ll look back over Isaiah’s account, you’ll read in verse three, “that he may be glorified”. So the second requirement has to do with our motive, our focus, our character.

Why does HE want us clothed with power? So HE will be glorified. And HE receives glory, or is glorified, when righteousness and justice prevail in and through a life.

When the spirit of generosity drives out the spirit of selfishness, God is glorified. As hearts are mended of emotional hurts and scars, God is glorified. When the hopeless begin to understand their life isn’t over, and their dead hopes and dreams can be resurrected, God is glorified.

The writer of Hebrews quoted a psalm in verses 8 and 9 of Hebrews, chapter one.

But of the Son he says,
“Your throne, O God, is forever and ever,
the scepter of uprightness is the scepter of your kingdom.
You have loved righteousness and hated wickedness;
therefore God, your God, has anointed you
with the oil of gladness beyond your companions.” (Hebrews 1:8-9 ESV)

“You have loved…and hated…” Motive, focus, character.

The words you and I say, the songs we sing, the prayers we pray, and the hands we use to lay on others; they’re either clothed in power, or caked in our selfish desires. We’re either desiring his “kingdom come”, his “will be done”, or we have some other motive.

If we don’t love what he loves, and hate what he hates, how can we truly say we want him to receive all the glory and honor?

How can he be glorified when we’re really the one living in the spotlight?

“…Would that all the Lord’s people were prophets, that the Lord would put his Spirit on them!” (Numbers 11:29 ESV)

Well, what are YOU clothed in? Are you being “rubbed” by the Spirit of God?

Did I just rub you the wrong way?

Thank you for reading this post. Please comment, I’d love to hear what you think. For more posts and a weekly newsletter delivered to your email address, please go to http://eepurl.com/PaJK5 and sign up. Thanks.

God’s Little Helpers

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Isn’t it cute to see a little girl help her mom in the kitchen? I smile whenever I see a mother in the grocery store, pushing her shopping cart, with her son or daughter pushing a miniature cart right alongside her.

Mommy’s little helper.

Or how about the dad, mowing the lawn, with his little boy pushing a plastic lawn mower right beside him. 

Daddy’s little helper.

Kids naturally imitate their parents; their actions, manners, beliefs, and vocabulary. It’s the way they are wired to learn. Imitation, hands on, practice. Long before kids learn to read, they learn important things that will stay with them all their lives.

“THEREFORE BE imitators of God [copy Him and follow His example], as well-beloved children [imitate their father].” (Ephesians 5:1 AMP)

Everyone is wired to learn and grow, developing physically, mentally, and spiritually through imitating others; especially parents, elders, and GOD.  So doesn’t it make you wonder why people act like they do?

Especially GOD’S little helpers?

Have you ever met people, people who really “love the Lord” (just ask them), who are so committed to helping God straighten out everyone else’s life?  People who don’t gossip, because that’s a sin, but tell all they know about so and so in the form of a prayer request. “I’m not supposed to say this, BUT…”

I’ve known well-meaning Christians who feel it’s their duty to point out the flaws of their pastor; over and over, to anyone who’ll listen. Telephone warriors, Facebook wrestlers; defenders of righteousness! After all, people need to be accountable, don’t they?

Who really are they imitating?

There are little “helpers” who believe their calling in life is such a holy calling, and so unique to them, people don’t understand them. They are convinced God has given them the gift of “Discernment”.  I think “the gift of judging” is more accurate. 

God’s spiritual gift of “Discerning of Spirits” is a gift that enables the recipient to see, as God wills, the spirit realm; the underlying spirit operating in different situations, behind the scenes. To see the “motivating” spirit.

Too bad they DON’T have THAT gift. It might help them see which spirit is pushing them around, making a mess in other people’s lives.

We had a guy visit our church one time who was one of “God’s little helpers”, according to him. He shared  the information about his “calling” with me following our morning worship service. We had, in the back of our church, little books covering different subjects that were made available to people free of charge; books that could help them grow in their faith. 

God’s “helper” began to tell me how wrong it was to have the books, those “poisonous books” as he called them. I disagreed with him, but he kept on and on, explaining how God had given him a ministry of “straightening pastors out.”

Well, it didn’t help. And he never came back.

I’ve known other “helpers” who have such a sharp tongue, one carefully placed word from them can cut the deepest of wounds. They say they’re concerned, believe they’re compassionate, but their actions do not conform to, or agree with, God’s character.

Really! 

You see, God is a very present help in time of need. 

“God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble.” (Psalm 46:1 NKJV) 

God’s little helpers are people who IMITATE Daddy’s attitudes and actions. They are available to HELP, not hinder; HEAL, not hurt. 

They love what He love’s, and hate what He hates!

God’s little helpers think like Daddy, walk like Daddy,  dress like Daddy, and act like Daddy. Their mind is renewed by Daddy’s Word, they walk in Daddy’s love, wear Daddy’s armor, and humbly represent Daddy’s family business.

God’s little helpers imitate God. 

Who are YOU imitating?

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