Is That You?

The sudden slapping sound of metal on metal made by the tumblers in the door lock broke the empty silence and her eyes opened.

Covered by blankets and the heavy darkness her breathing goes shallow to listen more intently. Her mind sorts through scenarios, and then if only to satisfy her anxious internal voice and quiet her fears she calls out in a voice just loud enough to be heard…

Is that you?

Practically every married couples lived out this scenario or some version of it and at times our relationship with the Heavenly Father is also this way. We’ve been together a long time,during which His Holy Spirit has been a counselor and guide. We’ve walked together,He’s carried me, I’ve walked away, He’s been faithful. You’d think we’d be more discerning of His “moving” by now but somehow at times we still find ourselves feeling like the woman under the blanket. Seeking confirmation of what we think we know, anxious and fearful of the unknown, and that can be dangerous because many times we only see what we want to. Our spiritual eyes can easily become accustomed to an environment of darkness!

I know that there are definitely times when I find myself asking…

Is that You?

I find biblical context for my confusion In Luke’s Gospel chapter 7:19-23.

What John was experiencing was definitely not what he or any of the other apostles had expected to occur. At this point John was perhaps facing death, so I can understand how difficult it must’ve been for him to trust who he thought Jesus was.

I don’t make very many life or death choices but given what was at stake here I can totally understand how he might’ve wondered if he’d been mistaken somehow.

He needed to ask Christ in as direct a way as possible exactly who He was. He chose to send two of his friends to ask Jesus because he was imprisoned. Can you imagine that? Telling your friends and most likely people who you’ve taught about Jesus to go and ask Jesus this most basic question! As awkward as that prospect must’ve seemed to him, I believe his biggest challenge was to first face his own fears.

Fear of being wrong, of not seeing things as they really were and of exposing his own humanity to his friends. He had to first understand that thinking you know something is the greatest obstacle to learning anything!

That’s certainly a mindset I can relate to.

Recently I’ve had occasion to reevaluate some of my own beliefs. Take abortion for example…I just don’t think that denying that choice to a woman is very much of an expression of love which is what Christian people are called to do and be in this world. I understand that it’s about the unborn child but it’s still the woman’s real estate that it has to be conveyed through…

Our Father hates all sin, as should we, but He gave Adam a choice because
without it…

It’s not love…it’s just the law!

and while God’s word certainly carries that authority He’s too much of a loving Father to treat us like programmable robots, no, He gave Adam a choice!

What I’m saying is “Who are we to insert our authority over the lives and choices of another when God Himself who is love, chose to do otherwise”

Do I hate abortion? YES! but standing outside an abortion clinic harassing people who’re already going through perhaps one of the most difficult times of their life doesn’t seem all that loving to me…

We’re not called to be anyone’s judge or to be argumentative like an attorney…we’re just supposed to be witnesses of the difference His love has made in our lives! To be ever-ready to give an answer when asked about the source of our hope!

I see the people outside the clinic with the huge and unspeakably gruesome pictures of aborted babies on display. I look into their accusing self righteous faces as I walk by and then stop for a moment and ask…

Is that You?

I know it’s me…

Listening to the lyrics of a song recently I was struck by their accurate reflection of my own life!

I want to know what became of the changes, we waited for love to bring. Were they only the fitful dreams of some greater awakening?

Jackson Browne “The Pretender”

I’ll admit that sometimes I feel that way. I’m certainly not as committed to living my life for the Lord as some are! And I do feel somewhat frustrated and discouraged over the status of my own spiritual life! It’s been quite a challenge to me that’s with me to this day! At some point, who knows when…I’d like to find my own state of grace where I can truly accept the full measure of forgiveness that Jesus was crucified to secure for me!

Take this guy for example…


I met him one day while I was taking a break from driving. He told me drives this bus up and down the west coast doing his ministry which he claimed was based on Seventh Day Adventist teachings…

He told me that Christ had established his true church in 1866 which had me wondering what the second chapter of Acts was all about!

My issues with this particular variety of religion are numerous but in a nutshell, well…it’s a religion! A man made set of rules that when followed entitle you to go to heaven. Based on the belief that Christians are still under the law instead of the “new and better covenant” spoke of in Hebrews 8:6.

Is that You?

If what your looking for is a perfect representation of God the Father in Christians or the institutions they establish you’ll never find it! If you think otherwise I believe that’s an indication of how you see yourself, Perfect!

I know I’ve found it to be true in my own circumstances…

Can you see the problem?


We’re all created in Gods image but our sin shattered it into shards and fragments that show a perverse reflection. There are times when man does reflect enough of Him,or is able to die to his self to such an extent that what we see seems like perfection…

We call that “art”

In the ninth verse, thirty eighth chapter of Marks gospel,John brings to Jesus’ attention certain other practitioners they’d observed who were engaged in a deliverance ministry of sorts. The idea being to get His approval to “forbade” them from it. My sense is that based on His reply Jesus wisely observes that “if our policy is to shut down everyone who doesn’t have it all together who’ll be left?” And tells John to basically leave them alone!

None of us have got it all right…

No need to ask, “Is that you”!

We are the woman,

we’re also the bride.

We are the pretenders,

prevented by pride.

From seeing the truth,

Through our fractured eyes.

We fear what could save us,

And instead cling to lies!

Into The Mystic?

Would it surprise you at all if I told you how thankful I am to have the limited amount of intelligence I posses? On my better days I’m a person to whom humility comes easily and who harbors few if any misgivings about his place in the grand scheme of things. I suspect it was a product of his own similar revelation and his subsequent observations of me that my father once said,

“Son, you don’t have to be really smart in this world if you have smart people around you”

His words stung a little then but now serve as a confirmation to me of a blessing that has in may ways characterized my life and that’s helped me to be more comfortable in the many supporting roles I’ve played since.

Genesis 3:22

And the LORD God said, Behold, the man is become as one of us, to know good and evil: and now, lest he put forth his hand, and take also of the tree of life, and eat, and live for ever

Knowledge can actually be a curse, look what happened to Adam after he “got smart” via the fruit of the forbidden tree! I think God is saddened by what’s happened, it’s as if He understands what a burden it is to know, to understand, and that as a result man will now be held responsible to choose good over evil…

Can you not see how much better off Adam was before just being

“dumb and happy” ?

In a recent post I wrote about our freedom in Christ and how Christians have allowed a spirit of fear and deception to keep them from experiencing any possible benefit or blessing from things like yoga,the martial arts, or even performances by theatrical magicians and I still believe that. I understand dancing is now considered “okay” as well…However, when it comes to things like Christians practicing Transcendental Meditation or being involved with any other altered consciousness producing practices I think you’re on very shaky ground and through your own freewill are in danger of coming under their mastery and of being in an idolatrous relationship. It’s more likely to be a person who’s real god is intelligentsia who comes to see themselves as some sort of “mystic” Christian. People who because of their vanity, pride and egocentric perspective have moved out to form a new Christian elite of  super apostles enabled to be our metaphysical snake handlers, qualified by Christ no doubt to handle things that would cause the rest of us to stumble…

After all, they’re the Most Holy People of God!

I write about things that are personal to me and this topic is certainly no exception. I struggle with my own rebellious folly but thankfully I’m not smart or creative enough to come up with the necessary lies and perverted logic which would allow me to continue in it’s pursuit. No, I’m a real amateur compared to people like Thomas Merton who laid the groundwork that “enlightened” generations of free thinking people! People who are, both then and now, spiritually seeking and who because the church was asleep at the wheel or busy organizing a bingo game somewhere were left without a proper challenge to this heresy which seemed to meet that need . I’ve noticed that people refer to him as a spiritual visionary. A so called Christian mystic who sought to bring together all of the worlds major faiths and traditions. Sounds good right but there’s so much more! I believe that in the very near future it’s going to be people such as Merton who will be the new age metaphysical apologists for the anti-christ and his one world religion!

When I first began thinking of writing on this subject I wondered if there were any real or legitimate examples of what could be considered Christian mystics. What about John of Patmos the writer of the final book of the bible Revelation?  St. John of The Cross who’s writings so many Christians find inspiration and comfort in? And in conclusion I think the answer has to be yes! But I don’t think they’re the pretentious, self-important, whack jobs that are attempting to pass themselves off as such today!

But what do I know? I’m just dumb and happy!

In His Presence!

In the past few weeks just prior to Pentecost Sunday and in the partial week since it seems as though I’ve been thinking, talking, writing, reading blogs, articles and “tweets” about, watching video’s, and listening to other people talk…

all about the same thing!

It’s just like Bill says in this video, between bites of lunch…It’s a move of the Spirit, a fresh presence of Jesus one can only describe as an “encounter”. Jesus is showing up in miraculous ways and reaching out to His Church, to the people who are truly seeking Him and who are dependent upon His Holy Spirit to empower them for His mission works which are to begin within the church first and move out from there. Some are being healed, others delivered from crippling emotional wounds, still others from stagnant and prideful religiosity, The mission is the same, it’s a great co-mission between Gods Holy Spirit, Jesus and through us to deliver the captives! The miracle is that none of the weapons formed against Gods children can prosper in His Holy presence which is being poured out, He causes the lame to walk and the blind to see!  The manifestation is His Glorious light and His presence that we carry with us into this dark, and dead world!

It’s said that fear is the beginning of wisdom, in that verse to fear means to be in awe of who God is. We’re taught that no sin can come into the presence of a Holy God and I believe that’s true but why? After all, Satan is the father of lies but didn’t Satan come before God to talk to Him about Job? Could it be that our misunderstanding of this is whats keeping us from experiencing a life changing fullness of His presence? When we finally come to a place where we know what we are and seek to repent be forgiven, are we still afraid to come into His presence because of our attention wrongly being placed on the sin’s of our past and those we’re yet to commit, on OUR profound unworthiness instead of His agape love? What if the reason no sin can be in Gods presence is simply because of how much it breaks His heart?  Some don’t believe God has feelings and that the descriptions of such in His word are allegorical and simply for the benefit of our understanding but I don’t agree! All of us love our children, can you imagine having them paraded before you in any condition other than being in perfect health and how that would affect you?


I think some people’s perception of God and the idea of being in His presence are scary thoughts because they imagine the experience being something similar to that of Dorthy in The Wizard Of Oz!

Surely at some point in your life you’ve encountered a stray dog who’s been severely mistreated by people. Even though it may be starving and you’re holding out food to give to it, it will approach you with fear and almost against it’s own will,with  it’s head down ready to run at the first sign of your displeasure. Sadly,  because of their life experiences that’s how many people feel about love and so consequently they also feel that way about approaching God who actually IS love!

I want a visitation, a personal encounter with Jesus! Like the Israelites I want to pass over the Jordan into the presence of His blessing and rest. Joshua Made two piles of stones that day to mark the significance of what had happened, the first one on the bank from smooth river rocks that were taken out of the Jordan and another in the middle of the river where the ark stood as the entire nation walked past. I believe the stones he used to make the second pile were gathered from the land and were in a much rougher sharper condition than the smooth ones he first used, their roughness symbolizing our present sinful condition. The smoothness of first stones was the result of the influence of the water, placing them in the river represents the Holy Spirit’s work on our hearts of stone and just as it was with the Israelites who did cross over into Canaan it took an act of faith to make the waters part and repentance or the circumcision of their hearts to enter in! Through my experiencing the presence of Jesus and His wondrous love,  I too must leave my own sin or “Egypt” behind before I can cross over into and all He has waiting on the other side for me!

Gods In It…(Pt.2)

It was in May of ’08 that they re-possessed my car, a 2003 Subaru Brat, and within a week or so I was given a car to use that had been given to my pastor at the time by one of his congregation. Losing that car was hard, but it was fortunate for me in that by doing so I became eligible to receive food stamps without which my wife, daughter and I might have gone hungry! This was also the last month that I was able to make my mortgage payment of 700.00 on my home and 63 acres. It was along about this time I started thinking something was up and that my circumstances were a conspiracy of sorts.  The things that I was able to do successfully were quite limited and for many months consisted of going to the grocery store, church, writing and an occasional venture into West Plains to Wal-mart or Aldi’s for necessities. One day I was reading another blog and I came across this bit of wisdom which seemed to describe my situation, it said…

“Sometimes when it seems as though you’ve lost everything that’s the time when God shows you He’s really all that you need!”

Those words seemed to bring me comfort because more and more I was understanding their truth and relevance in my life. I spent that summer blissfully unsure of whether I was in a state of grace or one of perdition. Despite the fact that my world was crumbling around me and I was apparently unable to do anything but watch it happen, this was an incredible time of  spiritual awakening within me. I’ll always remember things like walking down my driveway at sunset talking to the Lord in the cool of the evening, or how even though we had hardly any money we always had gas to go into town to church and we even paid tithes!  We still had a roof over our heads and plenty to eat and I wrote some of my most heart felt blogs about my deepening relationship with Christ and my total dependence upon Him. It was my “surrender” that allowed me to have peace knowing that there was a purpose to all that my family and I were going through.

My inability to pay my child support became a huge issue, I was summoned to court to show cause and I tried to explain my predicament to the judge. There was absolutely no way in the world that I could get a job without my having a drivers license which they had suspended! I was asked to return again at a later date which I did although the situation remained unresolved. My third scheduled appearance I was unable to make because I didn’t have the 100.00+ it cost’s in gas to make the five hour trip so I faxed the prosecutor asking for a continuance.  Very soon after that I was told about the possibility of getting a job driving a school bus. I knew that you had to have a background check done to get it and that I probably had a bench warrant out for me so I stopped in at the sheriff’s department one afternoon and sure enough I was a wanted man! They seemed pretty shocked by what I was doing but dutifully took me into custody. I spent the next ten days in jail, after two days they sent a car for me to take me back to Cass county, it was a five hour ride in the back of a cop car with my hands tightly cuffed behind my back “Cass-catraz” I believe the inmates called it…

After I got out I didn’t get the first job that I was after but within a few weeks a friend at church told me about another school that was looking for a driver and eventually I was hired! One of the things that was so incredible was that I was hired with barely enough time for me to work and receive a paycheck so that I could make a 400.00 support payment that the judge ordered me to make! When I first got this job I was so broke, I remember that I had to ask the superintendent to loan me twenty bucks until I got paid so that I’d have enough gas to get back and forth to work. That was in October of 2008, and for the next eight months nothing really changed except that I added “Go to work” to my routine and had a little more money. Speaking of money, here’s something that will put my financial situation in proper perspective…In 2008 I made a total of 2950.00! I actually paid more in child support than I made the whole year, they took my 3900.00 tax return and I paid them over 600.00 to get me out of jail, 400.00 to keep me from going back to court and two or three hundred more in Nov. and Dec.

My home mortgage was almost a year behind by now, and even though my banker was a very kind and patient man who tried to help me avoid losing my home we both knew what was coming. My house had been on the market for over a year and the only real offer I had was for 100,000 which was rejected by our sales person without bringing it to us first for being too low.  Ironically our house ended up selling for about 25% less than even that offer when it was all said and done!  My house and property was appraised by the bank and came in at 148,000.00 I owed about 72,000 which is what the bank sold it for, I walked away with nothing…

The Giftings


James 1:17
Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, and cometh down from the Father of lights, with whom is no variableness, neither shadow of turning.

I believe everyone comes into this world with a gift to share  that was given to them by God. When I think of someone who’s “gifted” I think of people who are very intelligent, or who are obviously talented in some way. What I find interesting about the idea of gifts is what they all have in common, whether you’re an artist a mathematician, or just have the “gift of gab” we’re fascinated by them because they’re an expression of Gods perfection expressed through us! Knowing what our spiritual giftings are can take time for us to understand but I don’t think that knowing what our giftings are represents the greatest challenge to people, the challenge is in how we use them.

Romans 11:29
For the gifts and calling of God are without repentance.

The gifts that God gives us are ours to do with as we wish, of course that doesn’t mean that everyone uses their gifts to honor God.  Some intellectually gifted people become enamored with their gift, and make a considerable effort to convince the world that they alone are to be glorified through it. They make a god out of “intelligentsia” or the acquiring and expression of knowledge which has the effect of distinguishing their separateness from other people. In my opinion, the sign of real intelligence is to understand how little we actually do know and to have a perspective which can conceive of how small the differences really are between ourselves and those who we may see as somehow less intelligent.

Speaking of being “glorified” through our gifts, I want to pose a question or a scenario for you to consider…

Our relationship with God the Father is often explained or illustrated by using examples of our earthly familial relationships. I came across this example several years ago and it’s stuck with me ever since…Imagine a young boy who has been invited to build a car to run in a race, he approaches his father with the idea and together they build this car. Of course the father is the one who suggests the design of the body and the one who advises the boy to use graphite on the axles to minimize drag. He also encourages the boy to paint the car his favorite color and to pick out the number he puts on it. On the day of the race the father goes with him, and when the boy’s car wins the race he steps forward to accept the trophy. As the father, we want our children to have this moment of pride over whats been accomplished…after all, they did play a role in it! But when the child received the trophy he said “I thank you for this recognition, I want to acknowledge all the competitors here today who also worked very hard on their cars and who on another day perhaps might’ve beaten me, but today is mine and I shall cherish it. None of my accomplishments here today would’ve been possible had it not been for one special person in my life, that person is my father!”  And the father smiled even wider as he wiped away a tear of pride over some greater good that was established by this race, never once feeling slighted by his son’s moment of pride.

Never let fear of what could happen or your ability to control others’ reactions stop you from using your giftings, even if you’re afraid that you’ll be too puffed up with pride as a result. Our enemy has this whole world bound up and the only thing that has the power to break those strongholds is the releasing of our giftings for others to see. I want everything God has for me, I want to let His light shine through my giftings, and I’m not going to let the enemy lie to me and tell me that I shouldn’t do it because I may not be able to “handle it” or because of the approval of other’s!

Romans 9:16

It does not, therefore, depend on man’s desire or effort, but on God’s mercy.

WOW! The big lie is that it ‘s US!  Satan can always count on mans ego…

All we’re doing is setting the car on the track and letting go of it!

The work has already been done FOR US!

It really gives a new perspective to the phrase,

“What would you allow God to do through you, if you knew that HE couldn’t fail?”

This is powerful stuff, and our enemy will fight you tooth and nail to keep you from acting in your giftings because he knows how powerful a person who knows who he is IN CHRIST is, he saw what happened that day in Jerusalem when Pentecost broke out and the power of Gods Holy Spirit was loosed and he really doesn’t want to see anything like THAT happen again…but it’s going to, and then the fullness of the Gentiles will come in, the age of the church will be over and Jesus will come back for His bride.

Too simple? yeah I know…even my 10yr old get’s it!

Many have tried to make it complicated…Or even told outright lies about it

Sorry Mr. Paine, but there’s no need for “The Age of Reason” not then, not now…

Mr. Dawkins,The real delusion is yours! It’s not all about “Meme” or even you-you!

I serve an awesome God, and I’m proud to serve The King Of Kings and Lord Of Lords!

He’s a God who loves to give us gifts, because He loves us so much!

Romans 6:23
For the wages of sin is death; but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord.

Acts 2:38
Then Peter said unto them, Repent, and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins, and ye shall receive the gift of the Holy Ghost.

Ephesians 2:8
For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God:

Ephesians 4:7
But unto every one of us is given grace according to the measure of the gift of Christ.

2 Timothy 1:6
Wherefore I put thee in remembrance that thou stir up the gift of God, which is in thee by the putting on of my hands.

1 Peter 4:10
As every man hath received the gift, even so minister the same one to another, as good stewards of the manifold grace of God.