Basic Math( I am nothing!)

Addition
Subtraction
What is the missing equation?
I have multiplied my fears,
I have added my anxieties,
I have divided the light from
The dark,
I have added up the sum of how
Little sun I can see sometimes—
Its warm, its SoCal, it’s a beach of
An adventure, yet I have no thermometer—
I am pressed on every side,
I am shaken,
I am not persecuted for this faith,
For this bible I carry around—
For the trouble that has no ground
On me—
I have added up the days I have been
Alive and subtracted the days that I
Haven’t lived—
I have done the math right,
But the numbers don’t lie—
What is the end?
What is my end?
What is my subtraction—
What have I added?
What have I fought through
In numbers, in fears, in depressions,
In oceans of doubt, in religious jargon
That makes no sense—
The math makes sense—
Most are not at zero,
Most are not in the negative,
Most believe they are positive and
In the end the math is theirs to claim—
For Flaming Eyes of Fire they will see
All my numbers, He will add up what I
Have done with the numbers He has given
And I will know the end of the equation—
Me plus me is nothing and anything added
To me was never mine to begin with—

Knowing The Will Of God

What really does it mean to “do the will of God?” I say this because this can seem like the most important question to ask.

We seek to know our purpose(which is normal) and we seek to please God by our obedience. But often times it can sound like this: doing God’s will means hearing His voice and whatever He tells you to do you should do. So, we can then think that the judgment seat of Christ( 2 Cor. 5:10-11; Rom. 2:16; 14:10-12; Math. 12:36; 1 Peter 4:5) is all about answering for everything God told us to do. This is an absolute, but the emphasis is not on commandments, but on one’s motives. It doesn’t really actually speak to spiritual maturity to tell believers that all of life comes down to obeying God. This is incorrect in my opinion.

Jesus walked with the disciples for three and half years then He died on the cross and rose from the dead. The promise He left was that through the Cross we all have access to the Father and with the Holy Spirit( as the Counselor) will teach us all things– doesn’t always mean God tells us exactly( word for word, sentence upon sentence) what to do, where to live, where to work, who to marry, who to not hang out with, or even which color of car to buy( because red for a male means you will get pulled over more).

That can sound almost heretical. Doesn’t the Holy Spirit search the deep things of God? Yes, He does. But believers with the Holy Spirit learn about God through relationship with Him and through that relationship we do His will because of love. Love and obedience are connected, but as we grow in God( like Hebrews 12) He disciplines us as sons and daughters. He chastises, He cuts off that which doesn’t bear fruit. God works in us His will but He also works in us an awareness of the “desires of our heart.” Not to be confused with the wickedness that is internally apart of every human being.

Yes, we have fallen desires. And yes, we can want the wrong things. And yes, God requires us to obey no matter what. But in the long term of knowing His word and knowing what He has already spoken it would be more accurate to say that God rewards our choices and lets us decide sometimes which way to go. You will not always hear exactly what to do and sometimes that is on purpose. You do have purpose and you do have a choice and God mysteriously uses choices, decisions and His commands to fulfill Romans 8:28, “And we know that for those who love God all things work together for good, for those who are called according to his purpose.”

The Judgment Seat of Christ is more centered around not so much obedience but on the heart posture. God accounts all of our tears in a bottle and He is counting every reach and every movement towards Him. It is not just that God sees every evil thought( though He does) but it is that He sees our efforts and the more we press into Him with His grace and His mercy He in turn rewards us for seeking His face. It is not so much one over the other, rather it is both. But living in the “both” as an answer is what can make or break decisions and life’s transitions.

The reason why this is important in my opinion is that many of us can be afraid of our passions and desires and dreams and ideas. The same God that has told us that we are totally depraved( mind, soul and body) and that without His mercy and grace we cannot be made into His image, also said, “Delight yourself in Me and I will give you the desires of your heart!” Over time it seems to make more sense to ask God to treat you not like a little kid anymore just as you would ask the same of your earthly parents.

Parenting is so valuable because from ages 1-18 ( and some) your parents instill in you all that they can, but eventually you move out of the house, and make your own church choices, theological decisions, vocations and most of all relationship choices). It is not that we are never without any guidance. As our Heavenly knows what we need before we ask!

But, there is a difference between always needing someone to affirm your decisions when in all actuality we can be responsible for our choices, though in God its possible that we do choose right because we simply just “know what is right!” I don’t mean like the force in Star Wars where you can just “feel it!” I mean you just know what it is you want and what to do because Jesus has said, “You are no longer servants( for the servant does what the master says) but now I call you friends!”

As parents you can sometimes hinder your children by always telling them what to do. I am not a parent but I have some wonderful parents and I have to not let them give me commands as I am almost 30 years old and I decide for myself.

What I do, however, is honor them and their advice. The subject of honor is a whole other discussion.

Parenting is a challenge because you don’t want your children to make mistakes or go through pain many a times. There is no one way to do it, but wrestling with these tensions can free many of us up and move us away from being robotic in our faith to actually living out of passion to please God and to see Him in all that we do.

The key to redefining what “passion” means can be found in John 17:24

“Father, I desire that they also, whom you have given me, may be with me where I am, to see my glory that you have given me because you loved me before the foundation of the world.”

Once we see God’s passion for us and His fierce love and mercy we then do all that we can to have that living on the inside of us. Not just this verse sums it up but its a place to start. Jesus is our example. He lived from His Heavenly Father’s desire. It is also interesting to note that the affirmation of who Jesus was took place before Jesus DID anything. Jesus heard from Heaven, “You are my Beloved Son in whom I am well pleased!”

It was as if Jesus spent 30 years learning His identity “growing in wisdom..in favor..” And out of that place of purity and identity He was able to DO the mission. God was present in both stages. He forms us, shows us, guides us and then works through us and also lets us decide. The goal is not to be safe it is to live on the edge of utmost trust. Risk taking is the apex of story telling. Films and books are usually trying to take common situations and common people struggles and pushing them to go beyond their “ordinary life!” That is why we pay so much money to see the same stories in different settings and nuances because we are reaching for a risk. However, true bravery and courage is found in seeing how much a risk Christ took and because He faced it we can face it too.

The Apostle Paul did say, “Therefore, my beloved, as you have always obeyed, so now, not only as in my presence but much more in my absence, work out your own salvation with fear and trembling, for it is God who works in you, both to will and to work for his good pleasure.”( Phil. 2:12-13)

This command is to a body of believers and it is in between Paul telling us to be like Christ and follow His example of humility. I would like to suggest that working our your own salvation is not just between you and God but it is working it out amongst your brothers and sisters in Christ! I cannot grow unless my brothers and sisters help me grow and I also need oil that no one else can give me. It is the wonderful tension of the word BOTH. You need people!

Final thoughts:

-You know God by knowing His word and meditating on it day and night. And talking to Him about everything.
-The more time spent with God further grounds us in knowing who we are and why we were created.
-The way to know if you are doing something right when you think you are not comes with time and also is affirmed by the body of Christ-
–Without Godly friendships and community it will be much harder to discern the will of God.
-The fear of making decisions for yourself can be the same reaction of the parable of the talents. God gave them something to take care of, but the “wicked and lazy” servant said to Jesus, “I knew you to be a harsh man!”

Cowering in fear of God that is not the fear of the Lord can cause us to do nothing with the time He has given us. Erring on action actually is better than doing nothing. And the one that did nothing was called “Wicked and lazy!” which is what no one wants to hear at the end of one’s life. We can think that fear is okay as long we maybe work on other things, but fear in the long run becomes a sin. It is God who appears before us in His terrifying splendor and first says, “Do not be afraid!” It is a commandment to not be afraid and to not worry about one’s life! But only in Christ and by the Holy Spirit can we overcome and face our fears.

All of this is just an opinion and a perspective that can help us grow up in Christ because so much of what is ahead in life can be up to us, but we know we can’t do anything apart from Him.

Comments are always welcome 🙂

Listless

Many times it feels that just intending to do things for God or for the sake of love and being godly..it feels as if that is not enough. Is it strange to think that God rewards those that follow through and doesn’t to those that don’t. This is not an issue of being saved or going to heaven. Clearly there is a distinction but it seems very offensive to think that part of operating in God’s grace is the individual being held accountable for results not just intentions. Just a thought and also something that bothers me daily. I am in and rest in His mercy, but I refuse to waste my life on that which will burn away someday.

Death takes it for me,
Cause it’s the norm around me—
All have fallen asleep,
Live like zombies,
Encased in warm bodies—
Enclosed in unceasing hobbies—
I thirst for the truth,
Are not all depressed?
Are not all suppressed?
Are not all supposed to
Hear it clear and fear no
Evil? Are we all the watchmen
Of our own souls?
Are we all to broken to
Remember ever working
Rightly—brain is broken,
Death has spoken, I seek
To make the impact—
To keep love intact—
I am in the shadow
And I am falling apart–
Daily choosing the wrong
Parts—the pieces, the
Attractive things that seek
To lust it out on the lists
Of life, listless I am now
Of the lists I have made—
Of the intentions that have
Been dismayed—I am just
Intention now, I am just
As fallen as him or her—
Or those that live in a blur—
Can the projects be resurrected?
For hell awaits all those with
Good intentions—hollow me,
Hallow me, shine through me—
I am tired of talking,
Of living like summer will
Never end, its over, its gone,
No more sand, no more fire,
No more works, no more of
The closeness you used to feel—
No more promises just the nonsense
Of being a fuse, being empty—
Listless now, for tomorrow dares
To show me a new opportunity,
To hopefully change

To Much Talking

Talk is cheap. Talk is just the words coming out of your mouth. Talk is the difference between intention and action. Talk is everything that is in between reality. Reality, however, reality is what remains and what gets produced in actuality. The theory goes that the mind is either full of chemicals that regulate behaviors or it is really more so man’s awareness of himself and his ambitions. The answer to the great debate is both. The mind is both biological and psychological. The mind, however, is to big to say in this post. Talking, however, comes out of the mind. Talking is what you do to echo what is presently in your mind( or your head) but talking just by itself can become a hindrance. Talking all the time about the direction in which you wish to go with your life and the aspirations and goals that you want to accomplish can be a very deceptive path to walk down.

I am 28 years old now and have been hearing sermon after sermon of what it means to be a good Christian and what it means to follow after Christ. My bias has been soaked in Charismatic thinking coupled with a heavy emphasis on prayer, worship and intercession. And at the center of most sermons has been the need for intimacy and personal devotion and time spent with Jesus.

The talk of the Kingdom, the talk of love, the talk of change and the talk of Christianity all must occur. We must talk and process these things weekly at church and even more so daily in our lives with God. But to much talking about the concepts and to much talking about the intentions can get us to a very different place then we would maybe expect.

I think a huge part of Christian maturity is learning how to come out of just talking about concepts of justification, salvation and sanctification and evangelism and actually move into a place of really being the change. The crossover into the ‘fullness of God’ I believe looks like being a people that do not just hear and listen to the talk and are even known a little for being able to ‘talk the talk.’

But we grow past talking and into doing. Where the intention meets the reality and the reality is what we are judged for. The reality of our hearts and minds is that which remains when the flame and the fire tests our works that are before God.

I don’t have all my ‘saved as though by fire’ theology worked out but I believe that for us as followers of Christ it is time for us to move past just having good intentions or even wanting to make your writing have value and have impact on people, but to find ways in your life( with the grace of God) to stop just talking and start creating the reality.

Turpentine Day

Sitting on the shoreline

Feeling the turpentine

Layers of me shave away

As the ocean doesn’t stay

Stillness and meekness drain

Me in, for poverty is my

Storage bin, shoreline time

Reaches out to me, turpentine

Peels all of me, deep down

Connection cries out, wisdom

Builds upon my foolishness

Wasted space takes up much

Space, I move away from the

Shoreline, I shift my feet in the

Sand I firmly now take a stand

Give me counsel, give me wisdom,

Give me a life that can’t be shaken

For the turpentine day is soon

Coming the sky will peel back

And standing won’t lack

Before His face we will peel

Back and answer for the life

We’ve built either on the sand

Or from His right hand

Colluded Collision

Been thinking of my influences and the day it all becomes right, which implies much fear and trembling. Living to stay worthy.

Young Forever has me in this endeavor

Living resilient has wearied my flesh,

What am I gonna read about next?

40 million strong ten years back,

now a decade under the influence,

American Pie leading the way not

Mentioning the death of the legends

I am hearing it clearly now and then,

What sexual immorality has done to

The spine of understanding and the

Dwindling of a generation in disease

Its been enough to appease but I am

Certainly not at ease to read of these

Stats of perversion clouding the mind

Not to mention men not kind in their

Lucrative pervasive operations,

Nefariously pornography has become

Notorious and laborious to make more

Then just a couple of bucks, in the

Realm of protection I’ve been seeking it

With a new invention why so much perversion

These days? But I have to slip inside the sound

Machine of common sense and blame someone

For this current mess, I point and click all the time

That Hollywood is wasting my time then the

Generation effect hits me in the gut, this will

Never stop ceasing to amaze all of us, it will

Seem like it will pass but I must sit and rehash,

There’s to much backlash for what we see, it has

Done more to me then I can imagine, what we want

To believe about right and wrong come from the sound

Of the song and the waves in front of me that educate me

At nighttime, what’s twisted is uplifted, what sells is what’s

Promoted, what’s promoted is voted upon and continual

And will pay the price eternal, will last forever and will

Stand alone, will someday feel like it will own and last

And stay indelible but then the day comes for all the

Jail cells to be released and the crimes to be written down

And the books opened up and coolhunting will come clean

And the judge will not be mean, He will be right and that

Will be the end of the night and the continuation of day

Seen in the Son who payed the price for perversion, who

Went beyond just redemption, who rules and reigns in

The midst of this crooked generation and all my

Angst and anticipation will be seen in Him in perfect

Calculation, I will only bite the dust and go lower then

I exist to hopefully be raised up above the mess,

Then what is wrong will be right and I will answer

With all my might—choose Him tonight before its

To late—money will burn along with all that is

Wasted, let me not be late to this endeavor, what

You do carries on forever

 

Burn Day

Burn Day

Burn day might be

A month away, a day

Away, a deathbed

Away, a car accident

Away, a way will go

Lifted low before

Gifted high

He will rise

The lowly

And crown

Holy upon Holy

We will grip the

Ground full of heat

See mere seat and

Greet family members

Waiting in line outside

Of time entwined in

Pearly gates, the stand

And wait, later initiate

Prayer until Burn day

Comes and Nike

Kicks and guitar

Picks movie flicks

Guys and chicks

Were all apart of

The burn plan

Trying to understand

His flame is not a game

But a tame lion He

Will not be bound

By time or concrete

He will burn all our

Hesitations