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Monthly Archives: February 2014

The Valedictorian Church

Misalignment of the spine can cause any number of problems in the human body and can affect not only the skeletal system but major organ function as well.  Studies show that heart, lung, gall bladder, pancreas, spleen, stomach, kidney, bladder, prostrate and uterus issues can be directly influenced by the spine.  Furthermore, nerve fibers stem from the spine into every major immune system organ.

In the spiritual terms, misalignment can be just as detrimental to the Body of Christ.  When we fail to come under the headship of our Lord Jesus Christ and those He has set in authority, things become out-of-order.  As children of God and necessary parts of the body, our function can be hindered and our immunity weak.

For the remainder of this post, I want to call the misalignment, a “spiritual learning curve”.   To spare you the more in-depth and wordy definition of “learning curve”… here it is in short form.  The learning curve averages everything out.  In other words, new skills or knowledge can be quickly acquired initially, but subsequent learning becomes much slower. At first, a minimal investment of resources yields significant results, but the payback from continuing effort is smaller.

This is daunting in the world we live in of bigger, better and limitless upgrades.

At first it’s easy to make progress and our efforts are rewarded quickly but as time passes, the efforts we’re making do not garner the same results.  Just as when much is given, much is required, there are times when more is asked of us, with seemingly little to no increase.  This is when we are in real danger of settling for less in terms of spiritual gain if we fail to rise to the challenge. The average Christian walk, with a letter grade C and without challenge can begin to look rather appealing. It’s still passing right?  Yet, God wants us to excel in the call upon our life, walk worthy of it and increase more and more.  Come up higher and get an A!

I do believe God wants us to be straight A students… studying to show ourselves approved by Him, regardless of the applaud of men or the immediate result.  He is interested in our commitment and our longevity in our faithfulness to Him, the church, our leaders, fellow believers and the duty assigned to us.  We should be nothing less than valedictorian in the Spirit as we serve from scrubbing toilets to preaching to the multitudes.  Every season of our life comes with its own report card.

How are we faring?

“Average is just as close to failure as it is to success.”-Dr. John Polis

 

Being Rich Toward God

Luke 12:15-21, And he said unto them, Take heed, and beware of covetousness: for a man’s life consisteth not in the abundance of the things which he possesseth. And he spake a parable unto them, saying, The ground of a certain rich man brought forth plentifully: And he thought within himself, saying, What shall I do, because I have no room where to bestow my fruits? And he said, This will I do: I will pull down my barns, and build greater; and there will I bestow all my fruits and my goods. And I will say to my soul, Soul, thou hast much goods laid up for many years; take thine ease, eat, drink, and be merry. But God said unto him, Thou fool, this night thy soul shall be required of thee: then whose shall those things be, which thou hast provided? So is he that layeth up treasure for himself, and is not rich toward God.

It’s important to take inventory of our lives. To examine ourselves.  What does my life consist of?

When we find ourselves in a prosperous season… when the harvest of seeds sown has come to bear, there comes with it  a temptation to “pull down” our barns and build greater.  An upgrade is due us.

Somewhere along the way maybe, we’ve been lead to believe that we will arrive at a certain level of prosperity.  It’s a lottery of sorts…  a sweet spot in life, where we can just rest easy.  “Eat, drink and be merry”, right?

We long for the day when we won’t have to work so hard. When we can just retire and finally “live” a little.

We start to daydream of pulling down our barns.  It might look something like this…

“Oh, God has great things in store for me.  His plans are SO big that I’m gonna need a better ______________, a better _______________, a better _______________.  That’s what I intend to do! As soon as I get MY harvest, I’m gonna leave this ______________ behind.  I’m gonna build the life of MY dreams!”

Perhaps this kind of mindset has truly diminished the things that God has already equipped us with to use for His glory.  We’ve pulled down our barns.  And if these barns already aren’t enough for us, then how could something bigger and better ever be enough?

And here it is… that man was rich already. He was significant. He was provided for. He was equipped.  In essence, he had what was necessary for today.  He was taken care of, yet somehow, He thought he had to take care of himself.  Somehow, he thought the ground he was given belonged to him.

So what it all boils down to is that there is a question left unanswered.

In all of your pulling down and building greater, who have you served?  If you got your harvest and bought your dream _______________, to what purpose was it?  If it all ends at sunset…whose will it be then?

Will our children know what to do with it?  Will our extended friends and families?  How about our neighbors and communities?  And heaven help us, our government?

We must consider the “whose” of our harvest!  We must begin something with what God has given us that will live well beyond our years!

Get ready! The harvest is upon us. It’s time to seek the Lord! The Lord of the harvest is visiting our ground! He is preparing laborers to who will not labor in vain but will produce more of His spirit and yield His glory in this earth!  Unless the Lord builds it, we will labor in vain! Even if we give it ALL away, we will not find ourselves wanting.  The windows of heaven are opening and God has promised that He would pour out a blessing, so much so that there would not be room enough to contain it!  For some, even the most faithful among us, He hasn’t been able to release such a blessing because with even a handful, we pull down our barns!  We must settle it in our hearts that the foundations are good! What is already built is good! Yes, the barn is good! This is the year of the open door! If we will refrain from pulling down our barns, we will discover that He has opened the door of those barns and His bounty shall spill forth!  If we will rejoice in our room, He will give us a realm! Be rich toward God!

 

Undoing the Less!

Psalm 127:1, Unless the LORD builds the house, the builders labor in vain…

For far too long, I’ve been living on less than God’s best.  It’s been a season of living paycheck to paycheck and sometimes that’s even a stretch. I’m not only speaking in financial terms. This is an emotional issue, as well as spiritual.

How often do we find ourselves emotionally maxed out?  Spiritually waxing and waning?

In all honesty, about three years ago, I hit rock bottom.  Suddenly, in one instant, everything turned upside down.  I could talk about the “suddenly” but truth be told, we all have had a run in with a “suddenly” of some sort.  For me, it was a major lapse.  The bottom fell out. The elevator plummeted.  And I found myself in the lowest place possible.

Pride.

It was a defining moment for me.  An identity crisis at it’s best. Really, who did I think I was? Could the person I’d settled for “being” ever recover from this?

I realized that I had been laboring in vain.  Vanity is the worst emptiness.  It’s a falsehood.  Nothingness.

I was building my life like a glass house and it was only a matter of time before I would really know my substance.

It was a good thing.

On a very personal level, I was having a Mark 14:58 moment.  “We heard Him say, ‘I will destroy this temple made with hands and in three days I will build another made without hands.”

In an instant, it crumbled but God didn’t leave me there! He had building plans with my name on them!  And if I would just let Him labor in me, through me, with me, around me… His blueprints are much more glorious!

You see, unless the Lord builds… those who labor, labor in vain.  The word unless is a conditional clause of either a) a possible situation or b) an impossible situation.

Get the picture? When HE builds… it’s POSSIBLE!  When I build… IMPOSSIBLE!

So, this is the year for me! I declare it to be MY year! My year of undoing the less!  This is MY year to come into the manifestation of God’s building for my life! This is MY year of overcoming what has been IMPOSSIBLE in my own strength and living in all that God says is POSSIBLE for me!  I am a person of substance!  I am a SPIRITUAL being! I have the ANSWER and carry the SOLUTION! His name is JESUS and I am the HOUSE that He has built!  I am the vessel fit for my Masters use! I am equipped and ready! I am prepared for EVERY GOOD WORK!  This year, my labor is not in vain! This year, I will PROSPER and BE IN HEALTH even as my SOUL DOES PROSPER!  This is MY year!  And friend, it’s YOURS as well!

This is the beginning of MY declaration!

 
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Posted by on February 4, 2014 in Uncategorized