Monthly Archives: April 2012

“Drenched in His Blood”

What is holiness? Ever thought about it? I mean have you ever “really” thought about it? For all those who still think they can be “good enough” to get to heaven, I can definitely conclude you have not thought about it.

We had a dog we thought was white, that is until we put it outside after a fresh snow one day! I couldn’t believe how brown our dog was! Maybe I’m exaggerating just a little, but the point is, God is absolutely sinless, pure, and holy. White is the only color that even begins to describe it, and I’m sure white would turn brown in embarrassment if the two were put side by side.

How would one even begin to be “good enough” to have fellowship with the holy God? What does it mean to be without spot or blemish? Can any human ever achieve such a thing? There has only been one, and he was born without the help of man! As soon as man touches something, it is defiled! Holiness is absolute perfection! The moment I touch it, it is no longer perfect.

The other day I did a load of laundry and when I pulled my clothes out from the dryer I noticed a little rust had gotten on the very corner of my collar flap. It was a light-colored shirt and that one spot stood out like a sore thumb! The whole shirt was ruined because of that one small rust spot! We do not understand how “holy” God is! He hates sin! It is a stench in his nostrils! He loves his creation, but he hates the sin we have fallen into! Our flesh is a stench to him! We are defiled, corrupt, and decaying! God is life and we are houses of death! No matter how pure we may think we have become, we do not dare draw nigh to God! If we were to dare to do so, we would be exposed as the white dog that is really brown when dropped in a fresh snow!

Jesus himself asked the Father, Is there no other way?

“And he went a little farther, and fell on his face, and prayed, saying,

O my Father, if it be possible, let this cup pass from me: nevertheless, not as I will, but as thou wilt.”

(Matthew 26:39)

I have to believe there was no other way. No other way than the holy blood that washes “whiter” than snow. If I am to come before God’s throne “boldly”, then I come to him drenched in the blood of Christ! For I am an unholy man, saved by the grace of God! Every time I think I’m doing pretty good, I find a rust spot on my white shirt. Every time I’m about to puff up in pride, God drops me in the snow and I see Jesus!

In Psalms 51, David’s plea for mercy went like this: “Purge me with hyssop, and I shall be clean: wash me, and I shall be “whiter” than snow.” (vrs 7)

Even a freshly fallen snow would look brown compared to our holy God. For the person who plans to work his own way to heaven? He will run from God’s presence! For the closer he is to the holy God, the blacker his goodness will grow! Only the red blood of Christ turns the blackness of my soul whiter than snow. The cross has become my tree of life! I will come before my Creator drenched in his blood, or I will not come at all. Sin cannot stand the presence of pure holiness. There is no fellowship between light and darkness. The one destroys the other. I will have fellowship with God when I, too, am light! For that, I must be born-again. Jesus said, Marvel not that ye must be born-again. Do not be amazed. This is not hard to understand. It is as simple as dropping a white dog in fresh snow and discovering the dog is not so white after all.

Do not be puffed up in pride. You’re not as white as you think you are. Come to the tree where the blood flowed red, and you will find the grace to be born-again, you will find the path that leads to a throne, you will find the love that makes you whole. Then, and only then, may you come boldly, and be accepted in the Beloved. It is the perfection of Christ you will wear. It is “His” white that outshines the snow.

Only the red blood of Christ turns the blackness of my soul whiter than snow. The cross has become my tree of life, drenched in his blood.

Try as you might, don’t try to accomplish in the flesh what only the supernatural can achieve. It’s not our fault! We’re born into a pit of blackness no flesh can climb out of! It is a supernatural transformation God is offering. “There is no other way!” Jesus already asked for that possibility! Don’t let what looks white enough to you lead you astray! God’s Word says “There is none righteous, no not one!” Our version of white is a perversion that only looks good to us! Until we approach the one holy God…and then we run…but it will be too late.

There is a white that comes only when we have been drenched in his blood. He offers it freely, the tree of life.

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“Beautiful Bloggers Award”

 

Thank you firestone2012.wordpress.com for your very kind nomination. I must admit I did not know what to think of it at first, but then I thought, what a fun way to find other sites that people like! And what an honor to be able to tell someone else that you like what they are doing. So with a grateful heart I now attempt to continue the Beautiful Blogger Award.

Seven things about me? I’m fifty-six. Love teaching God’s Word. Was a youth minister until I was forty-eight. Just beginning a new ministry at a new Church to develop home Life Groups. I drive a semi for a living. Love to write. I have a book coming out “hopefully” before Christmas. Enough said about me. Now for sites I have found that I enjoy. (In no particular order.)

1.) durtonthebible.wordpress.com

2.) composerofwords.wordpress.com

3.) lifewithmisty.wordpress.com

4.) elizabethsjourneyhome.wordpress.com

5.) godschick.wordpress.com

6.) jeremynoel.wordpress.com

7.) isaacstokes.com

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“The Tin Man’s Curse”

I watched a man hang his head in shame and defeat just the other day. Exposed to be weak, revealed to be untrustworthy, embarrassed publicly, and laughed at by the devil. Already in prison for another crime, now, even while still in prison he had just been caught stealing. He was caught with his hands in the purse of a female officer in search of a cigarette!

As a thirty-year smoker he simply could not resist the desire, the craving, the crutch, the addiction of tobacco, even though capture was probable. His head hung in humiliation and pain as the rough sergeant stripped him of what little he had left. A trust that had taken many months to build was destroyed in seconds and laid scattered and shattered on the floor. The sergeant man-handled him, jerking his pockets inside out as everything fell before him. The saddest part of all was the total lack of respect this thief had even for himself! There was no sign of hope in his eyes, no talk of I can do better, only total acceptance of what he was, a completely broken spirit with nothing left to give.

His every body language was: “I am a defeated man…I can never change…there is no hope for me.” Totally defeated and broken, the victim of his own sin; it was obvious this man was the ‘slave’ of his craving, tobacco was the chain, and Satan the master. It was evident that after many years of sin and the bondage that goes with it…this man no longer had a heart to fight or a heart to hope. He had become the Tin Man, in need of a heart.

Totally defeated and broken, the victim of his own sin; this man was living the life of a ‘slave’, an addict, without fight or hope, his heart lost long ago, he now accepted his plight completely. This is who he had become, this is who he was, and he had just been caught again.

America! Land of the free???

Maybe in years gone by, but no more! Chains come in many forms, and slave masters are well paid. The flesh is so easily addicted, and then what do you do? We have become a country full of slaves and color has nothing to do with it. A drug store on every corner and liquor stores between! Our children are sedated in order to go to school and more marriages divorce than survive! Pleasure, money, and entertainment have become our masters and we the willing slaves! Our prisons are overfilled and undermanned, requiring early release back into our streets! The innocent become victims and women are raped! The womb is invaded for convenience sake! Young people kill with the stone-cold heart of professional assassins, as we simply pop another pill, put it on our charge card, sink deeper in debt, and watch bankruptcy rates soar. Who can blame those who turn to sleeping pills and tranquilizers for their answers?

Non-racial, equal opportunity…slavery! Red or yellow, black or white, all are equal in his sight! Come one come all, to the land of the lost! There is a sad fact the Bible teaches us about sin. Repeated acts of rebellion and sin slowly ‘hardens the heart’. Little by little the heart dies a thousand deaths until it becomes hard as stone, and the conscience seared as with a red-hot iron! We become people past feeling, numb, going through motions, craving passion, enslaved to our sins, and a part of us wishing to die.

Little by little the heart dies a thousand deaths becoming as stone, and we become the Tin Man in search of a heart.

Then comes the moment of truth for we know who owns us. Once again our master has betrayed us as we stand there in weakness and shame. No where to run and no place to hide! You are desperate and want to cry out to God, but does the Tin Man still have a heart?

“And ye shall seek me, and find me, when ye shall search for me with all of your heart.”  (Jeremiah 29:13)

“That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine ‘heart’ that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved. For with the ‘heart’ man believeth unto righteousness…  (Romans 10:9-10a)

And so the Tin Man’s search begins. Do you still have a heart? A heart to hope? A heart to fight? A heart to give to God? Or have you come under the Curse of the Tin Man, in need of a heart?

 It is an inward search we speak of, an inward journey back to God, seeking a heart that can still be touched by pure love. A heart that can still be moved to repentance, compassion, and hope!

The plain truth is that so many of the pleasures of sin are highly addicting. Satan knows how easily the flesh is hooked, like a fish on a line, ready to be reeled in, slowly…don’t want the fish to get off the line, you know. Very slowly, wear him out, get him close and then scoop him up in the net. The hook leads to leverage, and eventual control. I believe most of America is addicted to more than one thing. It is a multitude of addictions Christ has kept us free of. It is a sad state of affairs, but because God is God, there is still hope!

“And I will give them one heart, and I will put a new spirit within you; and I will take the stoney heart out of their flesh, and I will give them a heart of flesh; that they may walk in my statutes, and keep my ordinances, and do them; and they shall be my people, and I will be their God.”  (Ezekiel 11:19-20)

Only God can do the kind of heart transplant needed in a lost soul. His guidelines and laws are meant to keep us free and give us victory! Do not be afraid of words like statutes and ordinances, those are just code words for walking in the Wisdom of God! Wisdom is good! All the good things of life are found in the wisdom of God!

The self-seeking and self-centered life, is a journey that eventually winds down and collapses upon itself. It is a spiral that winds inward, instead of outward. It is a toilet being flushed. The flesh always hungers…give me, give me! The flesh life becomes meaningless and hollow. Some people figure this out in time to be saved, others remain the Tin Man clear to the bitter end. I promise you, the key to true joy in life is getting your mind off yourself, begin listening to God, discover that special thing ‘in you’ that he means for you to give to the world, and be fulfilled. The question is, do you still have a heart to believe, and will you give it to God?

“The Tin Man’s Curse.”

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“A Sycamore Saddle”

 

Zacchaeus was willing to climb to a higher place to see the Lord. (Luke 19:1-5) How about you? Where are you in your spiritual journey? Are you at such a place? Zacchaeus climbed right up into a beautiful sycamore tree, found him a nice fork and slid in. He slid right into that “sycamore saddle” and saw the Lord, but not only that…”the Lord saw him”…and then the Lord went home with him!

The question becomes, are we willing to make a spiritual climb? We are talking a higher path, a higher place, a higher life, a sycamore saddle able to provide a whole new perspective on everything.

As a boy I loved climbing trees. We had some really tall ones and the view from those high branches was incredible. I will never forget the world I discovered high in trees. Zacchaeus never forgot the world he discovered in Christ. If Jesus sees you, and comes home with you, you will never be the same. Go ahead, be brave, climb a little higher and dare to spend an evening with the Lord, in the high places. There is a higher life than the muck and mire of lowland living. If you have lived there for any time, you know it is a place of great promises that fail to satisfy. Our spirit longs for the high places. Nothing else will ever satisfy the longing of our soul other than God himself. It is the design of the thing. We cannot escape our design. We can refuse to cooperate with it, but we can never escape it.

“The Lord God is my strength, and he will make my feet like hinds’ feet,

and he will make me to walk upon mine high places.”

(Habakkuk 3:19)

It is a supernatural thing that only God can do. Dare to walk in the supernatural. The Christian life is supernatural or it is nothing at all. For deeper teachings in this area please click on “Chasing the Ghost of Me” in the side bar, and continue your spiritual journey in Christ. I have two sites because not everyone wants to go deeper. It is a strange thing how the path to going “higher”, is found by the way of going “deeper”. It is a paradox that only God can work. That’s why he’s God. Amen!

“The Lord is my shepherd; I shall not want. “

“Thou preparest a table before me in the presence of mine enemies…”

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“Sailing and Soaring”

 “Sailing and Soaring”

His wind in my sails,

that is my goal.

The oceans before me,

God’s breath in my soul.

Filled with his Spirit,

he leads me on.

My life is a journey,

his Wind is my song.

Drawing me onward,

with delight and dismay.

To always discover…

his love each day.

New worlds a’seeking!

New places explore!

As God leads me onward…

upward I soar!

A wind vessel am I!

With places to go!

Destiny awaits…

as in Him, I flow.

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“I’m just a Speed Bump”

I don’t know about you but I find “speed bumps” very annoying most of the time, and yet, God told me today that I am called to be a speed bump! Gee thanks, God. Why don’t you just call me to be a worm, or maggot, or something. I’ll never have any friends this way. At the same time, I know they save lives. They save lives from people who don’t have enough sense to slow down on their own. They save the lives of little children who might suddenly pop up out of nowhere, or the innocent shopper whose grocery list is filling their mind. Because we live in such a busy world, we’re rushed, stressed, and at times self-centered, even foolish. We all need speed bumps, but at the same time we do not like them. So at the risk of being “annoying”, I’m a speed bump! And I’m asking one and all to “slow down”, take a breath, and read something good for your soul! Yes, your “soul”! You know, that invisible part of you that gets neglected so much because we do not see it with our eyes? We’re running over our soul! We’re so busy chasing our dreams we forget a dream is lifeless without “soul”, our soul! So here I am getting in your way and saying if you don’t slow down you will damage your vehicle running over me, and maybe we will save your soul, and the life of someone else! But I must admit, it hurts for you to run over me because I like to have friends, doesn’t everyone?

Bible history is full of people who were called to be God’s speed bumps. Noah was one and no one listened. They laughed at him and his family. I’m sure that hurt, but when the waters rose people began to claw at the door, wanting in. Most of the prophets and great men and women of God were speed bumps, and they got run over, too. It is a sacrifice to be a speed bump, it is a “ministry” based on the welfare of others more than self. Speed bump people usually have a strong vision of the “big picture”, therefore they are willing to lay down their life and become the annoying speed bump. However, if a speed bump ever slowed you down enough that you just missed crushing a child beneath your wheels, you will be forever grateful there was a speed bump in your life.

So what can I say? What can I do, to get you to slow down and take a spiritual breath? Even now we are rushing into the weekend! Perhaps a thousand things planned, and only 48 hours to squeeze it all in! We are the Mad Hatter running around, I’m late! I’m Late! All I can say is that life really is better when you stop to smell the roses. Remember what is actually important in your life, and let God help you focus on those things. The devil loves to keep us running, distracted, stressed and…”breathless”. God is all about “breath”. All scripture was breathed (inspired) of God. I’m just a speed bump pointing out some annoying things to you, and perhaps getting in the way of your weekend. Some day when I’m worn away and gone, you just might say: You know? I really miss that guy.

Ever been in such a rush that you felt like the picture below? We had a young man killed recently as he rushed to a “quick-stop” to get a snack while on break. He did not see the train coming and their were no arms to stop him, or slow him down. Slow down, set your priorities, and enjoy this weekend with God and loved ones. Remember the “Litlle Preacher”, her message is strong, don’t waste your life. 🙂

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If I were the devil by Paul Harvey

http://youtu.be/ZaGVCO6CByQ

This is really good! Was Paul Harvey a prophet? He said these things in 1965! Actually, Biblical common sense could have predicted these things. I have to believe Paul Harvey was a man who loved his Bible, and that made him a prophet! The devil is very predictable and we fall for him anyway. Why?

This clip is highly recomended viewing. Enjoy!

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“The House that Built You”

Once again I was cruising down the road in an eighteen-wheeler when a country music song started playing that caught my attention, and my imagination. The title of the song was: “The House that Built Me”. As I listened to the words the story unfolded. It was about a young lady who returns to the house she grew up in, but it no longer belonged to her family. She knocks on the door and begins to tell the current owners how she had grown up in that house, and how it had helped to make her the person she was today. She wanted to know if she could have one last look inside the home that had “shaped” her life.

My mind began to drift with the thought of my own life and the place I grew up. Had it shaped me? I had to admit it was true. The house I grew up in had a major effect on who I am today, and this is the reason why. During my third and fourth grade years I had a couple of neighbor girls that I became friends with. I mean we lived right smack next to each other. So it was very easy to become friends, and we did. When we started school that fall, I didn’t think anything about it, but thanks to knowing them I fell right into a popular group. I was one of the popular kids! I didn’t really realize it at the time because it had happened so naturally. I hadn’t even figured out yet what it meant to be popular. I would not figure it out until my fifth grade year when I became “unpopular”, and it happened like this.

For two years I was a popular kid at school, and then my parents decided to completely uproot my life, and we moved to a farm-house in the country! Isolated! No one but my younger sister to play with! Surrounded by corn fields and beans! No more neighborhood girls to usher me into popularity! I was a total stranger! And when I climbed onto a bus that fall for the beginning of my fifth grade, I found out what unpopularity was. I did not connect with the “cool” kids. I made a couple good friends, but we were the loners, the oddballs, or whatever the uncool are considered to be, and that pretty much became the rest of my school years experience. Grades five through twelve I remained a loner.

However, here is the interesting part. I took very naturally to it and actually enjoyed it! Our isolated little farm, surrounded by fields, trees, creeks, woods, a big barn, dogs, cats, and no one to play with. It began to develop my “inner” world. I became this introspective person who loved to think very deep about things. I loved the solitude with nothing but the wind making noise. It was a very peaceful kind of noise. I became a country boy, and I loved it. This house of isolation put me on a loners path, I took naturally to it and flourished there.

I learned how to entertain myself, enjoy reading a good book, stretch my imagination, hear God in the song of a bird, be at peace with myself as I hiked around country fields, I climbed trees and swung on ropes. I ran, jumped, climbed and explored many miles on foot. It shaped me in so many ways. None of this would have happened had I not been suddenly ripped out of my sheltered world of popularity and thrust into a totally unknown environment. But that environment became my home, and it began to build me in a different way, to become a different person who would love to spend time alone just to hear God. And even though my adult years have been spent in the big city, I have not lost that person God shaped me to be when he plucked me up and sat me down in a place I could hear him. If I had remained in my “popular” world, would Christ have become as “precious” to me? Or would I have been so distracted, never becoming still in my soul, to hear his voice and fall in love? God had a purpose for me, and this was part of it.

Think about that title: “The House that Built Me”. I don’t know what your story might be? Perhaps you might say, “The House that Hurt Me”. When you think back to the place that affected you the most growing up, what kind of memories come to mind? Are they good, or bad? Can you see how the house of your growing years affected you? Do you have a tale to tell of your own? It is my hope that many of you will share, in a few words, some main detail that has “shaped” you into the person you are today. Click on the “comment” button below, and give us a brief story about the house that shaped “you”. Have fun with this. Give it some thought. Let it take you back. Please share a special thought of your own. The house that most shaped you. 🙂

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“How ‘Precious’ is Jesus to You?”

How would you like to have “common ground” with God?

“To whom coming, as unto a living stone, disallowed indeed of men, ( but chosen of God, and ‘precious’…”)

“Unto you therefore which believe he is ‘precious’…”

“but unto them which be disobedient…a stone of ‘stumbling’…and a rock of ‘offense’…”

(I Peter 2:4-8)

Do you see it? (Please note I targeted specific lines as to focus on my exact point.) Do you see it? How ‘precious’ is Christ to you? Peter reveals that Jesus is very ‘precious’ to God! Now if Jesus is precious to us, too, then we have found common ground with God! But the question is…what is ‘precious’?  And why am I saying this is such a big thing? Believe me, this is big! It’s huge even! Notice that God separates the ‘believer’ from the ‘non-believer’ based on this premise! Do you understand what it means to be on common ground with God? Us ‘beings’ so lost in sin that God had to save us so we could even be able to once again comprehend such a thought as Jesus precious! The non-believers hate Christ and what he stands for, but we have been changed! We no longer view him that way! It is evidence we have been changed! He has become precious in our sight, but how precious?

‘Precious’ comes in different levels. I asked my wife how precious a favorite ornament of hers was? She said it was precious, don’t break it! So then I picked up her brand new little puppy dog and asked how precious is this? She said, even more precious and what are you doing? Then I grabbed our grandchild and asked how precious is this? Get the point? (I did not ask where I rated on this scale. I did not want to press my luck.) But how ‘precious’ is Jesus?

We are talking holy ground here! If Jesus is precious to God, and Jesus is precious to me, then I am on sacred ground with God, and that’s powerful! I am convinced the fact that I hold Jesus ‘precious’ brings my prayers straight to the throne! You got to understand, there are people out there who just see Christ as a life boat just in case the Bible turns out to be true. They just want an insurance policy. They plan on getting to heaven by the skin of their teeth, he is not ‘precious’ to them! This word ‘precious’ takes everything to a whole new level and puts us in an “inner circle” with God! Jesus had his inner circle and openings for those positions are still available today! All those still in love with the world will hold Christ in a lower esteem. Jesus himself warned a Church that they had left their first love, and admonished them to return to it. Return to the sacred ground in common with God the Father, Christ is ‘precious’! On this Easter day, how precious is Jesus to you? The devil loves to turn this day into a bunny rabbit hiding eggs. How silly is that? Enjoy your family. God loves that! But don’t lose sight of the fact of the price God paid for us to have a brain that could even think the thought of Christ precious!

I saw a movie trailer today of “The Hobbit”. Of course, that is the story of Bilbo Bagins, the hobbit who steals the “One Ring” from Gollum, another hobbit. This all ties in with “Lord of the Rings”. If you saw the movies, remember how Gollum would creep around whispering the words…“my precious”? It was really creepy! This was the ring of great power and lust. Gollum was addicted to it. It controlled him. He craved it! He had a love/hate relationship to it because he was torn between his lust for the ring and his desire to be free! How many people do we know in that exact same boat? To them the world is ‘precious’. Money, drugs, materialism, sex, a million things this world has to offer, all of it addicting and controlling. Into this Jesus invades and offers to set us free! Now he is ‘precious’ in our sight, and if he is not? What does that mean? Are we looking back at Egypt? A love/hate relationship? Torn between the world and a desire to be free? Make Jesus ‘precious’ and the power of God will flow! This word goes very deep! Make this a center piece of your spiritual mindset and you will experience God!

Dictionary definition of “Precious”:  Beloved, cherished, valuable, highly prized, and esteemed. These are all very strong words evoking great passion. There is an inner circle. I believe they stand on holy ground with God esteeming Christ ‘precious’. I believe such love, taps into the power of God. When Christ is ‘precious’ to us we will not neglect him, throw the Bible on a shelf, fail to pray day after day, give God our “left-overs”, and come to him when we’re too tired to think straight! I ask again…How ‘precious’ is Christ to you on this Easter day, and every day? Examine what you hold ‘precious’? If you really want to move your spiritual life to another level, remove this Christ you call on when you’re in trouble, and move to the sacred ground with God the Father! Make Christ ‘Precious’! (To you!) Like the branch connected to the vine, when we truly drink of Christ the power will flow, and we will be changed from the inside out supernaturally. Next Easter, we won’t recognize ourself!

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“Better to have a Dream”

“Better to have a Dream”

.

 Better to have a dream and live it small,

than to have no dream at all.

Dare to be what your heart can see,

and watch it grow.

The dream is yours to hold and keep,

the dream is yours to grow or shrink,

it does not matter what others think,

it is good to have a dream.

🙂

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