I’ve never done this before, to put out multiple notices for a message, but I feel so strongly moved of God to do so! The larger question is, is God calling each of us to dare to be a MockingJay, and pay that price to save a people? Politics is not something I touch on often. It is not my subject, but here I find myself today. When I started writing the below article, I did not know Sarah Palin was going to enter it. Whatever you may think of her, she certainly fits a MockingJay type.
Monthly Archives: November 2014
I just can’t seem to get the MockingJay out of my mind.
WE MUST REMEMBER HOW SHE STARTED.
She did not want to be a part of the games. She dreaded it, feared it, as any normal person would, but love for her little sister drove her to leap into those games like a protective mother bear!
She was not aware of the gift she had to “move people”. And a movement is inspired, they find their fire, while she is simply trying to survive and save her sister.
But as I said before, saving her sister is costing her a terrible price in her body, mind, emotions, and soul. True sacrificial love will cost us. It might even cause you to live in a $120,000 house, (or less), rather than a 10 million dollar house, simply because people are in great need all around you.
She did not see herself a hero, and maybe you do not see yourself that way either, but what gifts might God have placed in you, that will only shine when great pressure has been applied? Katnis wants to save her sister, could we save a town, a city?
We talk about eagles a lot on this site, and maybe you don’t see yourself ever being an eagle living in the high places of God, but what about the raven? I love the raven. I even chose to use that particular bird in my story of “Flapless – The Little Bird that Couldn’t”. You might notice that the MockingJay warrior outfit also looks very ravenish. (Is that a word?)
I consider the raven to be “a bird for hard times”. The raven stands out 3 times in the Bible. Noah chose the raven when conditions were to chaotic for the dove. The raven chose to endure what the dove chose not to. (The Holy Spirit does seek proper conditions in its temples. Hint.) Also, the raven was called upon by God to feed the prophet Elijah during very hard times. Jesus spoke of the raven when talking about not being attached to material things, but seek first the kingdom of God.
Could you be a MockingJay? Could you be so driven to save someone that you enter the heroic? Could you be a bird for hard times?
I think Hollywood is so ignorant of spiritual things that it sometimes produces the prophetic and does not even realize. I think the MockingJay is one of those shows. In December of 2015 we have a new Star Wars coming, but right now we still have the MockingJay. Let us not ignore the handwriting on the wall!
What might happen if you dared to target a mission for God and seek to save that target? Could you be ravenish, a bird for hard times? In America many of God’s children are too busy working hard to “avoid hard times”. There is a certain honor in that. We are to meet the needs of our family and one of those great needs is to show them true love. True love will raise a healthy child, and enable them to endure many things.
If you choose the path of the MockingJay, perhaps you will suffer greatly, perhaps you will be scarred for life, but those wounds and scars will glow like gold in the eyes of the people you have helped. Think about it.
Added Note: Speaking of Momma Grizzlies…could Sarah Palin rise to be a MockingJay if she chooses to? Katnis does not become President, but she sure does cause a lot of changes from her warrior ministry. I see a potential parallel here, but it would cost her greatly, endanger her family, require a great price. Pray about it Sarah.
“THE LITTLE BIRD THAT COULDN’T” > CHAPTER THREE
That night Flapless snuggled up in a pile of leaves that were trapped against a fallen tree. As he stared up into the starry sky he began to question the events of his day. “Did I really hear the wind talking to me? I passed several trees today and never heard the voice even once, not even a peep! What if I’m wrong? Will I find food up in the mountains? Do worms live there? Is the ground too hard and cold?” his thoughts continued in endless chaotic circles of fear and doubt.
“I never knew the wind could speak, even though, like the wind had said, have their not been Prophets who have said it is so? And have we not ignored them because we thought they were imagining things? Have we not laughed at them, just like some have laughed at me?”
“What is a Prophet, anyway?” he considered. “The Book of the Ancient Ways says they are a person who hears the voice of God, and speaks of invisible things of another kingdom. Sometimes they even tell us the future! Wait a minute, if I’m hearing such a voice, does that make me a Prophet? Or possibly a Prophet in training? Could the mountain be my great test?” Flapless was very lost in his thoughts when a voice from above suddenly interrupted!
“Hey, bro! What are you doing down there? You want to get eaten?”
“A voice!” Flapless shouted to himself, but then he thought, “Hey, bro? What kind of voice is that?” So as he looked in the direction of the voice, he spotted a small bird, a very small bird, much smaller than he, for it was a wren, and the little bird was perched on a limb above him.
“Oh! Hi, up there! I did not know you was there.”
“Yeah, I get missed a lot, but are you planning on sleeping down there?” the little wren asked.
“Yes. I have no choice. You see, it’s kind of a long story, but my wings do not work and I cannot fly. My name says it all, they call me, Flapless.”
“Flapless,” the wren repeated, “OH, I get it! So sorry for your condition, but since I am perching here tonight, I will try to keep an eye open for danger, and I can give you warning.”
“That is very kind of you, little wren. And what is your name?”
“My name is, Goliath, because I don’t like thinking small. I drove my parents so crazy with my wild ideas that they just started calling me, Goliath, you know, the giant?”
“Yes, I know of whom you speak. It is one of the stories in the Book of Ancient Ways. The same book that speaks of Prophets and hearing voices in the wind.”
“Yes, the same book,” the wren agreed.
Flapless noticed that Goliath seemed to be studying him closely, before finally asking, “Are you a starling, or a raven?”
“I’m a raven,” he answered.
“Hmmm,” the little wren sounded.
“I’ve heard that before,” Flapless thought.
“You know, I’m a bit of a student of the Ancient Book, and it is unfortunate that your kind has gotten such a bad rap in our times.”
“What do you mean?” Flapless asked.
“You know. All that stuff about witches and sorcery.”
“Oh, yeah, all that. I’ve never even seen a witch. I probably wouldn’t know one if I saw one.”
“If people studied the Ancient Book more, they would know how silly it all is. Just because ravens are listed as one of the unclean birds, I mean, aren’t we all? That is what salvation is about, right? And people seem to forget that our mighty eagle brother is listed as an unclean bird, too.”
“Actually, you ravens have a pretty good record in the Good Book of Ancient Ways. Noah sent one of your forefathers out of the ark first, because you are a stronger bird. The dove couldn’t handle the hardship. But your forefather bravely went forth, and stayed out much sooner than the dove.”
“Also, God chose another one of your forefathers to feed a very special man named, Elijah. And they faithfully took care of Elijah for as long as possible. And Jesus even used the raven when he spoke of taking no thought for your life, and what you will eat or wear, but seek first the kingdom of God.”
“Wow, you really do know the Ancient Book of God’s Word! Can I share with you the details of my journey? Perhaps you can help me have a better understanding, because earlier today I heard a voice in the wind, and that is how I ended up on the road to the mountains, for I was going to take the other path.”
“A voice in the Wind? Oh my. Yes, this will be very interesting. Please tell me all!”
“Well, starting from the beginning, I left home because I did not fit in, and I decided to go on a great quest in search of answers.” And so Flapless began to share every detail of his story with his new friend, Goliath.
The crickets chirped in the background as he described his great torment of having wings that do not work, and all his fellow birds who had hurt him with insulting names. He told of the owl who who who could not help him, and his many weeks of walking, walking, and walking. Until he finally had his encounter with “the Voice”, which he thought was the tree talking and he had gone crazy. But thank goodness it had turned out to be the wind speaking to him as it blew through the leaves of the tree. Then there was the turtle and his advice to listen to the wind and take the road to the mountains. Now here he was.
“I think I saw your turtle friend on the way here,” the wren said. “He was camped at a rock by a big tree.”
“Yes, that would be the one, but surely he was not right by the tree?”
“Well, it was a few feet away,” Goliath confirmed.
“Yes, that would be him. He is old and only has three legs.”
“Three legs?” Goliath repeated. “You know, I have seen something called a wheel. Some one should attach a wheel where his missing leg is, and it would probably help him a lot.”
“A wheel?” Flapless thought. “You really do think outside the box, don’t you.”
“Oh, yes, I guess I just did it again, didn’t I. Birds are not supposed to think of things like that.”
Goliath’s last statement was followed by a few minutes of silence, as both were lost in their own thoughts. The crickets never stopped chirping, and the stars never stopped shining as the two kept each other company. But finally, Goliath began to talk again.
“So the Wind spoke to you, huh. That is not a small thing, Flapless. And he said your condition is a great blessing?”
“Yes, but I’m afraid I don’t agree with that part. It has brought me a lot of pain and sadness. I have left my home. I have no friends. No place to lay my head. And I weary of all this walking. Now it is about to get even harder as I begin hiking up the side of this great mountain. I am afraid I might give out. What if I do not have the heart to make this great journey?”
“Hmmm, but you are a raven,” the little wren pointed out, and then added, “A bird for hard times. A bird that was first to leave the ark into the new world, and the bird that fed a Prophet during a time of famine and drought. Perhaps the Wind knows that you do have the heart?”
“He said he was All-Knowing,” Flapless added as he considered the little wrens words.
“Yes. That would seem to agree with the Book of Ancient Ways, but I never thought about it before. If this is true, then why do I fight the Wind?” Goliath asked out loud.
“What do you mean?” Flapless asked.
“Well, my wings work, and I use them for a few things. One, to get off the ground. Two, if I am flying with the Wind, I use them to go faster. Three, I use them if I decide to go ‘against’ the Wind, or in any way ‘counter’ to it. But I am beginning to ask myself, if the Wind is All-Knowing, why would I want to go faster than the Wind carries me, or counter to it in any way?”
“Hmmm,” Flapless found himself saying. “I think I see what you mean.” Then he considered that he could not believe he had just said, “Hmmm.”
Our story continues. Dan is still writing his children’s story “for adults”. This story too, will eventually be a button you can push and get in its entirety, but until then we will continue to slowly feed it out. Thanks for reading, and I know this story will bless you. (Chapter One was posted Nov. 13, 2014)
“THE LITTLE BIRD THAT COULDN’T” > CHAPTER TWO
The next day a box turtle was passing the tall tree just as Flapless was waking from his sleep. He had hardly slept all night thinking about the last thing the voice, the wind, had said. He did not want to leave this place until he heard more, but what did this great mystery mean? The wind is All-Knowing? What if the wind were All-Knowing? What would that mean?
So as Mr. Turtle was slowly making his way past the tree, Flapless could not help but want to talk to someone. An hour had slowly passed and the turtle was still close by, as turtles move very slow, and this one was old and very very slow. As a matter of fact, he was very very very very slow, because not only was he old, he only had three legs! He felt sorry for the turtle, but decided not to mention the missing leg. Some tragic thing had happened, but Mr. Turtle had survived and was living his life, just like he had been forced to live with wings that did not flap.
“Hey, Mr. Turtle,” Flapless began, “what if I told you the wind spoke to me here at this spot, just yesterday?”
Mr. Turtle stopped in his voyage and blinked one time… twice… then three times before asking, “Did the tree talk to you, too?”
“Of course not,” Flapless answered. “Everyone knows that trees do not talk.”
“Good!” Mr. Turtle answered, “For a moment I thought you might be crazy.”
“Nope, I’m as sane as anybody who hears voices in the wind.”
So Mr. Turtle paused for a moment thinking and blinking, before he finally asked, “Well what did the wind say to you?”
“He said I should get to know him, for he is All-Knowing. What do you think of that?”
“What do I think of which?” the turtle asked, “That you should get to know him? Or that the wind is All-Knowing?”
“Well, both, I guess.”
“Hmmm,” Mr. Turtle said.
“I’ve heard that before,” Flapless thought.
“Well…if the wind is truly ‘All-Knowing’, I think I would want to get to know someone like that.”
“Thank you, Mr. Turtle. That is what I think, too. So I am going to sit right here until I hear him again, so I can get to know him. Have a good day, Mr. Turtle!”
“So long, young fellow, and good luck!” the turtle answered as he began to move again.
Two hours go by before Flapless hears the voice in the leaves again. “Hey, Mr. Turtle! Did you hear that?”
“No, I don’t believe I did. What did you hear?” the turtle asked, for he was still close by and wanted to know.
“I heard the wind say, good morning!” Now Flapless was all excited and jumping around. “Good morning, wind! I have waited for you! I want to know you more and hear what you have to say. I have thought all night, and were you telling me to take the road to the right? The one leading into those big mountains?”
“That depends,” the Wind said. “Are you willing to trust me completely?”
“I think I would like to do that,” Flapless answered. “What have I to lose? I am a bird that is grounded. I cannot fly. And if you are All-Knowing, like you say, do you think you can help me?”
Mr. Turtle could only hear one side of the conversation, but he had paused again so he would not miss a thing. He was afraid he would get too far away and not be able to hear, especially if the conversation went on for a day or two.
“I know I can help you,” the Wind answered.
“Hey Mr. Turtle! Did you hear that?” Flapless shouted.
“No, I did not. What did the wind say?”
“He said he can help me! I have been on a great journey, looking for answers, and he says he can help me if I trust him! But he wants me to take the path to the right, going up into those high mountains. It looks hard there. I’m not sure I’m brave enough. What would you do?”
“Hmmm,” came the thoughtful answer again, as Flapless continued waiting.
“The mountains can be a lonely place,” Mr. Turtle began, “but a life of unfulfillment is not worth living, and a fulfilling life is worth every risk. You are a bird that cannot fly. So sad. If your answers lie in the mountains, then I would go there. And I could probably reach the top in just a year or two, because I would be so anxious, I would put a rush on it. I mean; I would really put the pedal to the metal! If you know what I mean.”
“Then that is my answer!” Flapless shouted. “I will take the path to the right and head towards the mountains! But how will I hear you when I leave this tree, Mr. Wind?”
“While you are here in the low-lands, it will be difficult. Not every tree will be able to carry my voice for you, but as you climb higher into the mountains, your ears will become sharper, and my voice clearer. You shall see. But you must trust me completely, and do as I say. You must remember, and be faithful to whatever the last thing is you hear me say. Silence does not mean I have changed my mind.”
“Got it!” Flapless shouted, and then repeated. “Silence does not mean the wind has changed his mind! Thank you, wind! I will be faithful! You’ll see! I’m on my way now! Bye!”
So Flapless took a few steps passing the turtle on his way. He did say bye, and thanked him for his advice.
Mr. Turtle sighed as he watched the little bird disappearing down the road, and said, “Boy, he is really flying! He’ll be there in less than a week at that pace!” And then he turned left to continue on his way. There were only several hours of daylight left, so he planned on camping for the night at a rock he could see just up ahead.
“Playing Your Cards Right” #4.
Which is it at your house, a Thanksgiving turkey… a Thanksgiving ham… or both?
I dare say for most of us, it is both. We have so much to be thankful for in this country. This is Thanksgiving day and everyone will be very busy with family and friends, just as it should be, but let us be careful that list reads: family, friends, and God. Let us be intentional about it.
In Series #2 we talked about the power of the attitude of gratitude. The Pilgrims knew what it meant to go hungry, I mean really hungry! Most of us do not. For all Priest of God, every day should be a day to play our Thanksgiving hand.
When Jesus healed the 10 lepers, only one came back to him and said: THANK YOU. Jesus asked, where are the other nine? That one ex-leper played his hand better than all the rest that day. He played his cards much more powerfully because he was truly grateful. The others may have thought they were grateful, but they were mostly just excited about how lucky they had just gotten. Too busy enjoying their new health to take the time to thank the One who had just given it to them. Nine out of ten failed the test that day. How do you like those odds? And I see that so often. God forgotten, or last of the list of everything else. Nine out of ten failing, but we are here to learn to play a better hand! Right? Praise God!
So today, lets play a better hand. Today, lets be truly grateful to our God. Lets love God, and love people, and love ourself like we are supposed to.
Now go, and play your best, most powerful hand. Happy Thanksgiving everyone! 🙂
Our series continues. If in #2 we decided we are eternal beings and a true WIN is not winning a few battles, but the war, then we are ready to proceed further.
WE NEED TO REALIZE THAT SOME OF THE CARDS IN OUR HAND ARE SUPERNATURAL!
IF THIS IS TRUE, THEN WHAT DOES IT TAKE TO PLAY THOSE CARDS?
I hope we can all agree that if you have some supernatural cards in your hand then you have a powerhouse, like a trump card. Does it make sense to ignore such cards, or to waste them and play them wrong?
If you knew the other people at your table have supernatural cards, but you had none, would you feel you are being cheated, set at a major disadvantage? I would. And I would be extremely grateful if I requested three cards and they turned out to be trump cards!
As Christians, if we know we have such cards in our hand, why are we not grateful? Why do we abuse them, ignore them, and use them wrong? Why do we weaken them and cast them before swine as if they are nothing? And then we blame God that we have been dealt such a bad hand? Do you see how foolish your way of living has been? We need to learn how to play our cards!
We have been called to a supernatural priesthood in Christ, and yet we do not practice the functions of our calling. We do not pray, we do not study, we do not obey sacrificially, we do not love sacrificially, we do not worship, we do not give God first place in our life, we have idols we bow down to, and those idols are so weakening our hand that we have no anointing to empower our supernatural cards. Your cards have been watered-down, compromised, weakened, demasculated, without Christ they can do nothing! Your hand is weak because like the five foolish virgins you’re asleep and have no oil!
Here is a good truth for playing a better hand. THERE IS NO STRENGTH IN THE KINGDOM OF GOD WITHOUT THE ANOINTING. SEEK THE ANOINTING. SPEND TIME EVERY DAY SEEKING MORE OF THE HOLY SPIRIT.
With the anointing some of your cards will begin to glow, and when your enemy sees how many cards are glowing, he will know he better back off and make room!
NOW GO, AND IN THE NAME OF JESEUS, PLAY A BETTER HAND.
The MOCKINGJAY movie may come a little too close to reality for some people’s taste. In our day of “self-serving leadership”, instead of “self-sacrificing”, we want our heroes to end up rich, fat, sassy, and happy. However, Christ showed us true leadership involves paying a high price of dedication, love, and many sacrifices.
I had already read the book and was hoping the movie would stay true to the author. I think for the most part it did. The movie fails to show how much Katnis was struggling with mental, physical, and emotional scars. They give you a glimpse of it at the very start of the show, but then she seems to pull herself together much quicker than in the book. Part I has set the stage for what is an extremely high action and intense Part II. I think Part II will deliver everything it promises.
But the point is we see so many of our leaders today that bare no resemblance to the leaders we had of the past when our country was truly great. Their eyes are more on money than what is true and right. Their eyes are more on what will make them fat, sassy, and happy, rather than your best interest. How did we get here? We can see it in every walk of life, entertainment, politicians, big business, but worst of all… our pulpits across the face of this nation.
The pulpits have always been a “rudder” to steer a great ship, and our Pastor’s are the ones who have their hand upon that rudder. So I ask, where is America going today? A post-Christian nation? Why? Jesus was the ultimate example of self-sacrificial love. If we should see an example of that anywhere, it should be from the pulpits of our Churches. From our Pastor’s who claim to be examples of Christ. Then perhaps there would be more people wanting to follow such an example of true leadership.
I think when the entire MOCKINGJAY package, (all 4 movies), have been delivered, we will look back on the entire package and see that this is a very powerful story with a very powerful message for our time. I expect Part II to be “heavy” also, but you will be so on the edge of your seat from the intense action that you will know it was worth it, and a good taste of reality is what we need. That’s my humble opinion anyway. 🙂
How can I get the most out of the hand I have been dealt? How can I win more hands, and what does winning actually look like?
First you have to make a choice. What do you think a real win is? What is a real ‘W’ as they say? For myself, it was critical I answer a couple of questions. Whether we believe in faith or not, most of us make our decisions based on what we do believe. I could not define a ‘win’ without first deciding what I believed about a couple of things.
Question #1> “Do I have an eternal soul, or is everything simply over when I die?”
Question #2> “Based on my answer to #1, then what path leads to winning the war, not just a few battles?”
In order to avoid writing a book here, Question #1, in a nutshell, boiled down to their simply being too much design to everything around me. You can’t get something from total nothing. It’s impossible. Therefore there is something supernatural involved in my existence. As I continued down this path I simply could not deny an inner knowing, a conscience, a 6th sense, confirming to me that I was more than flesh and blood, I was also spirit. I think people underestimate the power of this “knowing”, because God says he has put eternity in the heart of every man. We do have an inner knowing, if we will be honest with ourself.
After that, the second question was easy because I already knew I wanted to win the war, not simply a few battles. I wanted long-term success, and long-term was now defined as eternity.
Each of us must answer these questions for ourself before we can effectively play our hand, and there are many clues, facts, evidences, teachers, archeological findings, logic, as well as gut-feelings to lead us to our answers. The theory of evolution seems to be a big factor for many, even though there are so many big holes in that theory. Such as, how does total nothing evolve? How can it even ‘bang’? This is all I’m going to say on this, because the evidence is really all around us, and within us to make a wise decision if we really want to.
So how do I get the most out of each hand I’m dealt every day?
First, make sure of what is a true WIN. God has defined this in his Word, but you may choose differently if you so desire.
Secondly, after you have a good vision of what is your WIN, have the RIGHT ATTITUDE!
God’s Word defines the right attitude this way> “Seek the Kingdom of God above all else, and live righteously, and he will give you everything you need.” (Matt. 6:33)
Jesus replied, “You must love the Lord your God with all your heart, all your soul, and all your mind. This is the first and greatest commandment. A second is equally important: Love your neighbor as yourself.” (Matt. 22:37-39)
Phil. 4:8-9> “And now, dear brothers and sisters, one final thing. Fix your thoughts on what is true, and honorable, and right, and pure, and lovely, and admirable. Think about things that are excellent and worthy of praise. Keep putting into practice all you learned and received from me— everything you heard from me and saw me doing. Then the God of peace will be with you.”
With these things in mind, you can play a better hand.
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.
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.
Drawing me upward with delight and dismay.
…..To always discover…His love each day.