Do take time to read this, for me it is such good timing on my journey of prayer. God is good, I am grateful.
Tag Archives: Christ
People so often seem to look at me as a strong person, a man of faith, of little doubt or a leader to be trusted.
It seems that I am a man of a certain charisma, possessing a persona that seems to offer confidence to others around me.
Right now though, I find myself plagued with doubt and I need to speak belief.
I need to speak belief over my life and over my mind.
I am only subject to an attack, just like any other believer.
An attack of the mind that tells me I am not good enough, that God doesn’t love me, that He is not a promise-keeper. All of these, I know are lies, but somehow the truth that I know in my knower seems to be trapped and not exuding through my heart, mind, soul and body.
Now this may be due to me having a bad night’s sleep followed by an injection of toxic stuff to control rheumatoid arthritis this morning, both combining to mess me up somewhat today. Maybe that is why I feel “out of step” with the Spirit.
I seem to remember hearing Jeff Lucas speak about times when he suffers the impact of a bad cold or jet lag and has just about learned to accept that there are days-many days- when one can just feel out of step and have to accept it as a physical thing, not a demonic attack and hold onto the truth which is unchanging.
It is NOT about feelings!!!
I do take a rather extreme cocktail of toxic and/or exotic prescription drugs to control or at least slow the progression of rheumatoid arthritis.
I have things stuck on my mind that I try to rest with Jesus but cannot quite let go of…hence the bad night.
Someone who is very dear to me (let’s call them A) is still very unhappy with a person we are close(ish) to (let’s ball them B) and who seems to demonstrate worryingly untrustworthy traits whilst acting in a senior position of trust. I have set myself in a place of deciding to set such things to one side as I am far from perfect and God is our judge. I know that He brings all things into the light that are committed in darkness and so, you may say naively, I have decided by will to set such things to one side and look for the good, for the common ground and to stand alongside B to love and encourage them.
Is this a selfish decision?
Is it foolish?
I have decided that if they are just manipulating me for their own agenda, then it is they that will be standing before God to account for this, just as I will be for my own actions. I also know that some of us will be judged more severely than others.
I had said to A that this person is changing and that we must love him and support him, but she is hurt and hurting and I am not sure where to go from here apart from pray.
Over the last two years, we have seen a lot of people hurt and still in the healing process as a result of mistakes and manipulation. We found ourselves in the unsought position of being sought out by the hurt and wounded and just want a break from it. We know someone else (lets call them C) who seems almost crushed by the burden of the wounded and do not want to get to the same place.
I think that A struggles to lay all this down and trust (as is my choice).
We can only be responsible for our own emotional response, can’t we?
Surely we must forgive and release or we wound ourselves, we don’t have to forget necessarily but we must forgive.
I have been given so many chances by my Father through the blood of Christ, how can I not make a decision to forgive?
Surely, if that means I get trampled on or beaten up by walking this path, then so be it…that’s my daily cross isn’t it?
The thing is, that this is my choice and I cannot impose my decision on A.
Also, maybe it is me that is the fool and that A is right…
I just hate the pain they are in, the anger which A manifests is driven by seeing recent and current examples of continued lies and acts of mistrust by B…
I think old habits can die hard.
What to do, what to do?
I think that I hear the scripture ringing around in my head from Matthew 18:15, which is a no brainer given the authority that person B has and how as a rule things never seem to go well (at least in the short term) for anyone who goes this route. In fact, having already done this once before we are in an interesting place even now…
What to do, what to do?
My bible tells me though, that I am right, my Matthew 18: 15 consideration is a blessed thought as any desire or drive to bring peace is surely blessed according to Jesus when He spoke that day long ago on a mount (Matthew 5:9).
It has been a hard day facing down a strange attack of the mind, working through old emotion that had been dealt with (or so I thought).
I am grateful for David’s honest Psalms that I can sing or speak out His own poetic prayers and personalise these charismatic confessions. I find myself asking my soul why it is downcast within me and begin to remember His great kindness.
Storms will come.
It’s where you have built your lighthouse, a metaphor for your living faith.
Build it on the Rock- a metaphor for God -as although you may get battered, you won’t get washed away.
Don’t build it on the sand as the foundations will shift and move and slide from beneath you.
Consider it a sheer gift, friends, when tests and challenges come at you from all sides.
You know that under pressure, your faith-life is forced into the open and shows its true colors. So don’t try to get out of anything prematurely. Let it do its work so you become mature and well-developed, not deficient in any way. If you don’t know what you’re doing, pray to the Father. He loves to help. You’ll get his help, and won’t be condescended to when you ask for it. Ask boldly, believingly, without a second thought. People who “worry their prayers” are like wind-whipped waves. Don’t think you’re going to get anything from the Master that way, adrift at sea, keeping all your options open. James 1:2-8 …I would rather be the lighthouse planted into The Rock than the wave smashed on The Rock. I may shudder as the waves crash in but, “God is strong, and he wants me strong. So I will take everything the Master has set out for me, well-made weapons of the best materials. And I will put them to use so I will be able to stand up to everything the Devil throws my way. This is no afternoon athletic contest that I’ll walk away from and forget about in a couple of hours. This is for keeps, a life-or-death fight to the finish against the Devil and all his angels. ” Eph 6:10-12 I am not there yet, I may never be this side of heaven (and no- I am not speaking failure over myself…), but I will seek to be as Jesus, by the Spirit in me, so that I too will sleep through the storm knowing that when I awake (or am awakened), I will get to my feet (for I have the power of Christ in me), tell the wind, “Silence!” and the waves, “Quiet down!” and they will do it. Then, when I see Jesus face to face He will say, “You trusted me.” (Luke 8:22-26)
An important article by Mike Breen.
This got me thinking about a matter that weighs on me.
Accountability…why are so many of us so bad at this?
I am afraid that I know/have known leaders and pastors in the Body of Christ who speak about the need for Christian accountability but in the end I have found that they are not living in a cloud of Glory but a mess of smoke and mirrors.
I have seen a beautiful church plant wither painfully into the dust due to manipulative leadership who were careful not to permit any members who acted as elders of the church to be trustees of the charity…different stories to different people who it seemed God would not tolerate. I have seen people take years to recover enough from this abusive situation to risk trusting God in a church again whilst also praying for some who are not yet able and have effectively ditched their faith…God in His grace seemed to pant another church out of the withering one before she was seen to be terminal. He seemed to somehow cut off the good from the plant and re-potted it in good soil.
Wonderful that He knows what He is doing.
I am thankful.
I serve a wonderful God and struggle daily with a call to be accountable myself. It is too easy to claim accountability whilst just telling different people different stories and thus give the appearance of being accountable and reliable.
I have seen valuable ministries and marriages almost destroyed by such.
I have seen a pastor surrounded by tame yes-people who never seem to offer those correctives so desperately needed leading and thus leading a fellowship that never met its potential sue to the endless waves of “comers and goers”. Where unsettled Christians from other churches joined, got to know the lay of the land and went again…probably never finding rest…
We have to pray and seek wisdom and grace, every day.
I am making a decision to be where God seems to have called me and to trust Him.
He is good at shining light on our sin and be sure that He loves justice.
No one said it was easy or going to be easy. Jesus certainly never said it would be easy.
He told us to take up our cross, daily.
The Serenity prayer just sprung to mind….you know:
“God, give us grace to accept with serenity the things that cannot be changed.
Courage to change the things which should be changed, and the Wisdom to distinguish the one from the other.
- Living one day at a time,
- Enjoying one moment at a time,
- Accepting hardship as a pathway to peace,
- Taking, as Jesus did,
- This sinful world as it is,
- Not as I would have it,
- Trusting that You will make all things right,
- If I surrender to Your will,
- So that I may be reasonably happy in this life,
- And supremely happy with You forever in the next.
I surrender to His will, or at least I try to.
We must trust and submit to Him and pray for those He has called to serve us in leadership but not be stupid.
This is a bit of a ramble I am afraid, with me struggling to say stuff that I am not sure how to share so I will quit for now and post this. Maybe I will pick out the bones and repost at a later date or maybe I won’t.
I will keep praying though…
You should read this blog by George Hach, we share the same BFF…
Image via Wikipedia
(5) For your Maker is your husband,
the LORD of hosts is his name;
and the Holy One of Israel is your Redeemer,
the God of the whole earth he is called.
Whilst specifically this book was spoken to His people in Judah and most specifically Jerusalem, it is in the bible for more than historical interest and more than evidence of the plans laid for the coming Messiah.
As I have already said, I believe that God is telling us to appropriate these promises for ourselves and taken as words spoken to you and me that can be all a bit weird and difficult to get hold of for most men, perhaps it’s easier if your a married woman reading this but I guess that depends on your experience of marriage…
I think the use of the word Husband meant far more to the Jewish audience than to many people today who don’t understand the significance God attributes to marriage, the ideal state for us.
The Torah is clear is saying “A man who does not marry is not a complete person” and Jesus certainly spent time putting the religious leaders of the day straight about His Father’s view on it by going back to scripture to point to Adam and Eve.
Consider that God is pointing to the covenant He has made with us.
The duties of a husband within the covenant were to protect and provide for his bride and that, I believe is what God wants you to get hold of deep within you. He promises to care for you, protect you, provide for you, care for your emotional needs and will always love you.
After all, elsewhere He tells us that “He will never leave you nor forsake you.”
Then, just in case you have begun to think that your problems are bigger than God, He reminds us that He is the Lord of Hosts, our Redeemer, the God of the whole earth.
Have you got that?
He is bigger than your struggles.
He is the God of the heavens and the earth, Lord over all.
There is none mightier.
So don’t worry and don’t get all caught up in works theology.
He has it all in control if your keeping on track with Him, and if your not then do the sensible thing, stop hiding and say sorry because His love for you brings more mercy and grace than you could imagine.
What’ s more, remember that He disciplines those He loves, He is so good!!
Also remember that we do what we do because of what Hs has done for us, we cannot work our way into His love. He doesn’t need our help but He loves it when we do.
I am thankful that it all depends on Him and not me, so I try to be obedient, love God and my neighbour and hold things lightly and when I get it wrong, thinking its all up to me or all wrapped up in worry, I am thankful He will never leave me.
I am thankful for His grace, mercy and love.