RSS

Monthly Archives: November 2008

Imagination

Here is a conversation that took place between a man named Mack and Jesus, as he was preparing to walk on water with Jesus. It it taken from a book that I have just completed reading…“The Shack”. The reason I am posting this is because the concept of this has evaded me until now, it has changed my way of thinking and I believe it is worth sharing. Enjoy….

“Will my feet get wet?” queried Mack.

“Of course, water is still wet.”

Again Mack looked down at the water and back at Jesus. “Then why is this so hard for me?”

“Tell me what you are afraid of, Mack.”

“Well, let me see. What am I afraid of?” began Mack. “Well, I am afraid of looking like an idiot. I am afraid that you are making fun of me and that I will sink like a rock. I imagine that-“

“Exactly,” Jesus interrupted. “You imagine. Such a powerful ability, the imagination! That power alone makes you so like us. But without wisdom, imagination is a cruel taskmaster. If I may prove my case, do you think humans were designed to live in the present, the past or the future?”

“Well,” said Mack, hesitating, “I think the most obvious answer is that we were designed to live in the present. Is that wrong?”

Jesus chuckled. “Relax, Mack; this is not a test, it’s a conversation. You are exactly correct, by the way. But now tell me, where do you spend most of your time in your mind, in your imagination, in the present, the past or in the future?”

Mack thought for a moment before answering. “I suppose I would have to say that I spend very little time in the present. For me, I spend a big piece in the past, but most of the rest of the time, I am trying to figure out the future.”

“Not unlike most people. When I dwell with you, I do so in the present-I live in the present. Not the past, although much can be remembered and learned by looking back, but only for a visit, not an extended stay. And for sure, I do not dwell in the future you visualize or imagine. Mack, do you realize that your imagination of the future, which is almost always dictated by fear of some kind, rarely, if ever, pictures me there with you?”

Again, Mack stopped and though. It was true. He spent alot of time fretting and worrying about the future, and in his imaginations it was usually pretty gloomy and depressing, if not outright horrible. And Jesus was also correct in saying that in Mack’s imaginations of the future, God was always absent.

“Why do I do that?” asked Mack.

“It is your desperate attempt to get some control over something you can’t. It is impossible for you to take power over the future because it isn’t even real, nor will it ever be real. You try and play God, imagining the evil that you fear becoming reality, and then you try and make plans and contingencies to avoid what you fear.”

As I read this, I realized that in no time that I have ever “pictured” tomorrow, whether good or bad, have I ever pictured it accurately. And I think the best advice I can take it to always remember when I am imagining…am I doing it together with Holy Spirit and do I see God there with me? Because if He is, regardless of whether what I picture becomes reality or not or even plays out exactly the way I think it should, that is one thing that will never change, His presence, in the present! And if He isn’t in my imaginations…they are purely just fiction…fairy tales and horror stories.

If you would like to learn more about the book, “The Shack”, go to http://www.theshackbook.com.

Advertisements
 
Leave a comment

Posted by on November 30, 2008 in Uncategorized

 

A Larger Place

Psalm 118:5 “I called upon the Lord in distress, the Lord answered me, [and set me] in a large place. ”

I love what I read here! David had called on the Lord when he was distressed, hard pressed, in a place where there was no where else to turn and the Lord answered him and set him in a large place. When I began to look at this “large place” that this passage is speaking off…according to several commentaries, it is the same place that Jesus was received to after he was raised from the dead and is now sitting at the right hand of the Father. Into the heavens! And that is a large place indeed! God actually set his mind, his thinking and his understanding in a realm of all the possibilities of heaven, revealing everything that was available to him, causing those things he was facing to pale in comparrison. And if that was available to David, it is certainly available to us.

A place has been made accessible to us, where we can walk at liberty, where our goings are established. A place where we can get a large view of the love of God. The place where we are answered with more than we have asked for…a sufficiency and an abundance that exceeds what we ourselves could even begin to think of. A place where all the possibilities of heaven are waiting for us and there is no larger place than that.

There’s so much…exceedingly…abundantly…to be thankful for!

 
Leave a comment

Posted by on November 27, 2008 in Uncategorized

 

Taking Joy

Reading from the amplified bible, Psalm 97:11 says. “Light is sown for the uncompromisingly righteous and strewn along their pathway, and joy for the upright in heart, the irrepressible joy which comes from consciousness of His favor and protection.” Doesn’t that just bring you encouragement today? God has given us irrepressible joy! No amount of pressure can take it from us! And it comes simply from being aware and mindful of God’s favor over our lives and His protection! So take joy today! Take it by putting your mind on all the graces of God! Know that today, He is guarding you, covering you and defending you. The pressures of life can’t even compare!

I am so thankful!

 
Leave a comment

Posted by on November 26, 2008 in Uncategorized

 

The Lord, Most Vehement

Psalm 94:12 & 13
“Blessed is the man whom thou chastenest, O LORD, and teachest him out of thy law; That thou mayest give him rest from the days of adversity, until the pit be digged for the wicked.”
What I love is what the amplified bible actually says-that the Lord gives us the power to keep ourselves calm in the days of adversity. Isn’t it good to know that God has actually give us the power we need, a supernatural calm, through His word and His instruction, that will keep us through the hardest, most difficult of times?

As I was reading further in this passage, I was introduced to and spent time with the Lord, in a way I never have before. Verse 17 of Psalm 94 says, “Unless the Lord, had been my help, my soul had almost dwelt in silence.” I asked Father, “What part of your personality is this talking about?” and as I began to search it out, I found that “Lord” in this passage is the Lord Most Vehement. I am so thankful to have been in His presence. You see, the Lord Most Vehement, is the characteristic of the Lord that is marked by strong feeling or expression, and this is the part of Him that is passionate, so much so that this name describes the duration of time in which Jesus lived from the last supper to the Cross. This is the part of His character that saw Him through and now determines our outcome! This is the part that can also be translated “soundness of mind”.

And when I began to explore this word, I wondered what it meant for my soul, my mind, will and emotions to dwell in silence. To be silent is equal to living in a place of death. When our emotions are shut down,ruling us to the place where we can’t seem to even be able to set our minds on God’s word, this is where we will find ourselves. But what I love is that regardless of how “vehement” or strong our emotions may seem to be, whether it be sadness, grief, depression, anger, etc., the Lord Himself, is the MOST vehement and is able to help us! His “strong feelings” & passion for us have superceded every influencing emotion and His soundness of mind is available to us! And if Christ is in us, we too have the “Most Vehement” stronger emotion living and working through us…if we will acknowledge Him.

I know how important my words are…that they influence every aspect of my life…EVERYTHING! I can’t emphasize that enough and I don’t know how many times recently, despite knowing that, that I have caught myself saying, “I just can’t do this anymore. I can’t continue like this…and woe is me…pity me, it’s my party, pity me!” And don’t you know, God wouldn’t have it any other way than to sit me down in church and make sure I didn’t get away with it! Even the guy taking up the offering didn’t realize it but all of his meditation and the time he spent studying was so that I would get the picture. But condemnation had found opportunity and I was again thinking I had failed.

But then there was Psalm 94:18, written just for me. “When I said my foot slippeth; thy mercy O Lord, held me up.” First, let me point out “when I said”, that’s important to note here. The foot represents our ability to endure and to slip means to “waver, fluctuate in opinion, allegiance or direction” and to give an “unsteady sound”. This passage can be read like this, “When I said, my ability to endure is wavering! My opinion is not steady…where is my allegiance, what is my direction? I have made an unsteady sound and I have betrayed myself but thy mercy O Lord, held me up!” In His mercy, He will even bend down and stoop to me and grant me grace and hold me up! He loves me enough to say, “Oh no…I’m not going to let you slip” and He doesn’t mind at all telling me when it’s time to take up the offering!

 
1 Comment

Posted by on November 25, 2008 in Uncategorized

 

Current Situation vs. Eternal Location

Romans 8:18 says “For I reckon that the sufferings of this present time are not worthy to be compared with the glory which shall be revealed in us.”

When I read this, I realized that this very passage was meant to help me put my “problems” in perspective because let’s face it, we are always going to have problems. When we chose to become a die hard, no matter what, follower of Jesus Christ, (which is the best decision you could ever make, by the way! ) you will find yourself going against the grain…rubbing the cat the wrong way… swimming upstream.

Let me just be plain here. It doesn’t matter if I think my problem is the end of the world! It doesn’t matter if anyone else agrees that what I am going through is the end of the world! The truth is, if I don’t want it to be the end of the “world” for me, that’s when I have what should be defined as a real problem! Romans 8:18 says, and I don’t believe I am taking this out of context, “the sufferings of this present time ARE NOT WORTHY!” And it’s not worthy compared to the glory which shall be revealed in me! And the thing is, the glory isn’t about me, it’s for

Read verse 19! It says “For the earnest expectation of the creature waiteth for the manifestation of the sons of God.” The world is waiting for me to stop worrying about my problems, talking about my problems, crying about my problems and comparing my current situation with my eternal location! When will the world ever get to see just how big my God is unless I let Him handle it? The question is, where do I really live? That’s what the world wants to know!

I love the teachings of Andrew Wommack (www.awmi.net) and here’s a few quotes of his, some of which really made me laugh today, after crying long enough that I knew I needed to get some put you in your place (in Christ) & get a hold of yourself (in Christ) Word of God in me!

“Today people think happiness is a result, instead of a choice.”

“Happiness is not a state of being, it’s a state of mind.”

“If you are all wrapped up in yourself, you make a very small package.”

“If you never bump into the devil, it’s because you are going the same direction!”

 
Leave a comment

Posted by on November 23, 2008 in Uncategorized

 

God’s Channel

3 John 1: 2, a passage many of us know well, says, “Beloved, I wish above all things that you will prosper and be in health, even as thy soul prospers.” And as I was praying the other day, the Lord spoke this word to me and I saw this passage in a whole new way. What is the soul really? I know that it is our mind, will and emotions but as I was referencing it, here’s what I found out. The soul, by the right use of aids offered it by God, can attain it’s highest end. I began to see this passage with the word “as” being like a mirror. The state of my health and prosperity being a reflection of what’s in my soul. If I am looking in the mirror and I am sick in my body or am lacking some way in any area of my life, I have to ask…what does my soul look like? Am I using it the way God intended to attain my highest end…which would be to prosper and be in health? That’s a good question today…worth exploring.

Something interesting I discovered also about this passage was that the word health of course is dealing with our physical well being but it also speaks of Christians whose opinions are free from any mixture of error, of one who has not deviated from truth. And to prosper is to have success based on what we think, feel or decide. So read this passage in light of that, in the Stacey Blubaugh Translation, of course. Beloved, I wish above all things that you will have success and be free from any mixture of error or deviation from the truth, even as your soul finds success in it’s way of thinking, feeling and deciding. You see, when we, with our mind and our will take on God’s way of thinking, feeling or deciding, every part of our life can be free. To be in lack, to be sick, to be depressed, is a mixture of error…a deviation from the truth and God wants us to be free from that! Amen?

Many of us are facing hard times today…walking through something, whether it’s physically, emotionally, relationally or even financially. But God’s word holds the answer, no matter what and God was so gracious to illustrate His word for me and show me why some things look the way they do in my life. You see, if true prosperity, as defined in this passage is a way a thinking, feeling or deciding. It’s a choice and is a direct result of what I chose to think on, how I chose to feel and what I decide to believe. Our soul is intended by God to be a channel for health and prosperity to pass through but every thought contrary to His, every feeling that yields to anything other than His word and any decision we make that would go against what He has decided to be “right” for us, through Jesus Christ, begins to build up in that channel and the flow begins to slow until it is like a clogged pipe. Sure, we may get a drop here and there but until we renew our mind, the flow is stopped up. And in order to do that, we must intentionally direct our thoughts toward God and all of His goodness & renew our mind in His word!

 
1 Comment

Posted by on November 21, 2008 in Uncategorized

 

I know the Father of Invention! He’s my Daddy!

Proverbs 21:5 says this and I love what it says, by the way, “The thoughts of the diligent tend only to plenteousness, but everyone that is hasty, only to want.”

First of all, let me say this! Thoughts are wonderful…the way God intended them because thoughts by definition are “inventions”. And an invention is nothing less than the product of an imagination or thought. Lately I have been warring with thoughts but I am so thankful that I know the “Father of Invention”! He’s my Daddy! God is a God of thoughts! Psalm 40:5 says that God’s thoughts toward us are more than can be numbered. Do you know what that means? If He is that way, we are that way, because we have been made in His image! There are just multitudes of inventions, more than can be numbered, just waiting to be produced on the inside of you and on the inside of me! So, rather than think of the things that can’t happen or won’t happen and produce a whole lot of nothing…think about what’s possible for us because we believe and get creating, making, and bringing into being! What haven’t you thought of yet? It’s waiting!

I feel like I could just explode with how awesome God’s word is! As I studied that word “diligent”, I learned that to be diligent is to be deliberate or intentional in the way we think! When God created us, He was very deliberate in making us His companion and He never intended for us to ever be apart from Him! And I love how diligent God is! When sin entered in, God deliberately thought… “ I know what they have done but I chose them and I still choose them! They are mine! I love them! I want to save them! I want to heal them! I want to deliver them and give them peace! I want to prosper them and give them an abundant life!” And just look what His thoughts invented! He, through Jesus, produced this beautiful fellowship with the loving Father we have today. How great is our God? Let me count the ways!

And to think that “God’s thoughts toward us are more than can be numbered.” When the gravity of Psalm 40:5 hit me, that God’s thoughts toward me, what just the thought of me causes Him to want to invent or produce and that those thoughts can’t even be numbered! How exciting is that? That God is continually producing His intentions and His purposes for my life! He is constantly inventing good things for me! And you know what’s even more exciting…what can I invent every time of think of Him. What can my meditation on God and His word produce? It’s my privilege and yours…to find out! I encourage you! Open your mind today and just think and allow God to think of you…invention in the making!

 
Leave a comment

Posted by on November 21, 2008 in Uncategorized