Posts Tagged With: Gotham

“Is God’s Word True?”

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God said never let the fire go out! Let us be “Keepers of the Flame”.

What does it mean to be a “Caped” crusader for God?

That “Covering”, that Cape is so important!

As faithful Priest, let us never leave home without it!

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OUR STORY CONTINUES BELOW.

 

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“Do you have your Gotham?” > Chapter Seventeen

The Encounter III > How big is your Gotham? Your personal assignment from God. Is it just your family? I have seen cases where that in itself might be all a person could do, but for most of us, God expects something more. And how do we go about answering that call? Do we give our all, or… something much less…something less sacrificial… something much more “man-made than God-made”. What is the secret side of our Priesthood? What is God’s Covering, his Cloaking, his Anointing? What does it mean to be a “caped crusader” for God? Batman had his secret side, and if I’m a proper Priest of God, so do I.

CHAPTER SEVENTEEN

But when you give to someone in need, don’t let your left hand know what your right hand is doing. Give your gifts in secret… And when you pray…go away by yourself, shut the door behind you, and pray to your Father in secret… And when you fast… don’t make it obvious… then no one will notice you are fasting, except your Father, who knows what you do in secret…and your Father who sees everything, will reward you. (Excerpts of Matthew 6: 1-18)

Don had a smile on his face as he cruised around the parking lot in his 97 Honda Civic. What a story this car could tell. Everything from the white rear bumper on a silver-gray car, to the rumpled hood, the soldered gas tank, the repaired brake lines, the fact the car sat for three years and the alternator was locked up when he started it. Soaking it with WD40 and forcing it to turn actually worked, and somehow he now had this great job as a “Watchman”, a guard, cruising around a parking lot in a bad area of town, keeping order, protecting, while a small yellow bubble light flashed repeatedly on the roof of his silver-gray car. In some respects it was ridiculous, but in others it was awesome.

His prayers were being answered. So much was happening! When he hired on as part-time, working the evening shift, who could have known the day shift guy would suddenly, without warning, quit! And he was offered the full-time, 8 a.m. to 4 p.m., Monday through Friday position. God knew. And now his work schedule was as perfect as it could get. Not only that, but he could pray while in that car, and listen to things on radio, preaching, books on tape, etc. etc. The physical need was met and a strategic position acquired, all in one moment, after that very bad day when he chickened out on the Starbucks job and came home depressed. Then he looked out the window and saw this little car waiting to be fixed. Reluctantly he obeyed God’s lead, and now he sat in the car smiling, for God is good and always has a plan.

When the door opened for day-shift, Don was once again able to reconnect with “Oasis of Hope Church” and help with the ministry birthing at that government housing apartment complex. The need was great, and when he reconnected he discovered there was talk of expansion! The Southern Baptist liked what Chris was doing, they had plans to send teams and help him expand to three new complexes! Soon he would have a ministry outreach every week! But this was only one opportunity whose door was opening, and these other two really had his attention.

Pastor Kerry and his wife Twyla. Their Church on Mass. Ave. and the special assignment from God on Pastor Kerry’s heart, that of reaching the “creative people” of the city. You see, the purpose of this ministry was not geographical as much as it was “gifting oriented”.  Pastor Kerry, as an artist, had a heart to reach out to other creative type people, which just happened to include “writers”. Don pondered what this special door could lead to? He had always felt a bit of a loner, misunderstood by others who did not have his pondering ways, because he thought deep about things, sought out solitude, as in his little car cruising around, so he could ponder things and create stories revealing the treasures he uncovered in God. What might this new connection lead to? Only God knew. Pastor Kerry wanted to read his newest story as soon as it was ready.

He thought about the unexpected call from a past disciple. How did God resurrect this old connection? Years had passed and this brother was in sore straights. They met after work and spent three hours together. This meeting had started at a Burger King and ended up in prayer in a secluded cemetery. God’s ways are unique, and His Presence had been strong while they prayed, but what could he leave this brother with? A story he had written, “Flapless”. That story had continued to minister, teach, and uplift, long after the two had parted, until they would meet again in one month, and Don was working on another story called, “Grasping the Wind”. God was still using his gift for writing, but how much more might God have planned?

However, the vision itself, that was the other unknown door. He had not been able to convince anyone at the Pentecostal Church to take up this vision. Perhaps because it was still untried. So the vision fell to him alone, to figure it out, to see what God would do, how do you reach your own neighborhood for Christ? The plan was slowly coming together and soon it would launch, but not without complete dedication to the “SECRET THINGS” of our Priesthood in Christ.

Yes, Don knew full well that was how he had gotten this far, and if it were to continue, then so must his Priesthood habits. After his year sabbatical, he fully understood that being a Christian was more than just being a “good person”, but there was a Priesthood. A Priesthood that God spent 4,000 years paying the price for, and when he ripped that veil in two, in the temple, when Christ gave his life on that cross, God the Father said, “Finally! IT is done!” Finally a supernatural life unlike any other was available for God’s people. Now we could be Caped Crusaders, if we are faithful to the secret things.

God is disgusted with his “SPOTLIIGHT seeking people”, who caught up in pride and desire for admiration, hide in their Church Boxes, proclaiming great things in the safety of their own, while neglecting the lost multitudes all around them, even in their very own neighborhood. We live in a day when some Christians make great and expensive journeys to minister one week in a land whose language they do not even speak, and yet they fail to try and reach their own neighborhood or city where they live all year long. What logical sense does this make? These people speak from pulpits as if they are examples?

We need to wake up. We are losing our own country while we hide in our church boxes listening to speakers who hide in the box too. Is it so brave to go to other church boxes in other countries where the people greet you with open arms, and need your money? Perhaps I should not speak such things? I who would compare Christianity to being a Caped Crusader? A Batman? How ridiculous. But if only Christians would be as faithful to the secret things of God, as Batman was to his secret things.

Is our Gotham lost? We are losing it more every day if we do not wake up to this vision. One year alone with God did this to me. I have more to say about this secret life. And there is a book growing, “Grasping the Wind”, written by a Christian Batman, with a neighborhood to reach and a city to save, one secret thing at a time, as it is revealed.

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“Do You have Your Gotham?” > Chapter Sixteen

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A VISION IS BIRTHED, A QUEST CONTINUES, A MISSION IS SERVED.

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“Do You have Your Gotham?”

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Unto the upright, light ariseth in the darkness.

Let a standard be raised against the evil of our day.

Will we enter the darkness to seek and save that which is lost?

The story continues…Chapter 15…“God has Heard”.

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“The Horrendous Thing that Shaped Your Life”

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Nobody has a perfect life. We live on planet earth where there is no such thing as perfection. When I look back on my own life I see 2 things that affected me in a major way, things that had to be overcome in my pursuit of God, and it was God that enabled me to overcome, so that I could pursue him more. I will share those 2 things shortly, but first I want to talk more about “GOTHAM”. Because some of you still don’t get it, and if you read this article, maybe you will “get it”.

If we take the fictional story of Gotham and make a life metaphor of it, certain things immediately rise to the top. Of course, the horrendous thing a boy experienced as his two parents were shot dead right in front of his eyes. This was a young Bruce Wayne, and it shaped the course of his life. This was a defining moment for him. For many people in our day and age, this might not be fictional. Their parent, or parents, died in a violent way when they were young, maybe even right in front of their eyes.

Bruce’s parents were not themselves violent, but violence came upon them. Some of you may have had parents involved in bad things and violence came upon them as a result of that, but still…which fork of the road will you choose? To become one who fights against evil for the sake of the weak and innocent, or one who decides to turn to evil, because of the violence that invaded your young life?

I want to stay in this time period of the young Bruce Wayne, because Hollywood has allowed us to do so, and given us another hero in Detective Gordon. It has been interesting watching very imaginative writers create this world of a young Catwoman, Penguin, Riddler, Ivy, and others, including Detective Gordon. Of course I am talking about the T.V. series “Gotham”, and if you haven’t seen it, you might want to check it out.

Gotham was such a “Snake Pit”! And into this world comes a young, brave, heroic, and honest Detective. Can he be corrupted? Can he be broken? Can he be bribed? Can we entice him from his high-ideas to join us in our bed of snakes? Oh what a world of evil and corruption Detective Gordon takes on, before there is any Batman to help him.

Detective Jim Gordon. Talk about peer pressure! The police department is so corrupted that he is practically taking on the whole mafia alone! And the Penguin comes to him saying: “There’s a war coming, Jim. There will be so much blood in the streets!” In our day today, there is a war already raging between God and evil.

Yes I said God and evil, not good and evil. There are plenty of good people fighting evil in the way good people do, BUT… God’s people are called to fight evil in a different way, in a Priestly way, and if you claim to be a God people, have you obeyed that way? Or will there be so much blood in the streets, AND ON YOUR HANDS.

There is so much more I could say about this, but I believe I will let the Holy Spirit finish that conversation. As for the 2 horrendous things in my life? I am fortunate, raised in a Christian family my “horrendous events” would not be considered “horrendous” by most people, but they did have a major affect on me and the course of my life. So I will quickly share these 2 things in very “short form”, so as not to bore you.

ONE: I was popular in school until the fifth grade, when my parents moved to an isolated farm in the country. I was so isolated that I became extremely introverted. I didn’t know how to talk to people. Bad part was, I was comfortable that way and didn’t want to change. I didn’t realize how much this was affecting me in a bad way. I was deathly afraid of speaking in front of people. So…when it was time to graduate I should have went to college and probably become a teacher, or journalist. Something to that affect, but I was so afraid of standing in front of people, how could I be a teacher? So I eventually wound up a truck driver. Go figure. The point is, when God started moving on me to teach his word? Wow…I’m telling you, you don’t know how real the power of God became to me when I finally broke free of my introversion. People today are amazed I was ever an introvert to the extreme, but I was, and God delivered me as I obeyed him. There were some good points to my seclusion. I probably would not be the “spiritual” teacher I am today, had it not been for my isolation in nature with God. But had I not fought the battle to overcome my greatest fear, I would have missed so much God was offering me.

TWO: As a young man riding my bicycle down a two-lane blacktop, which I did a lot of bike riding to escape the farm, but one day, I just happened upon a very colorful magazine lying in the middle of the road, pages flapping in the breeze, and as I rolled by, I looked down, and saw it was a “PLAYBOY Magazine”. I know I should have kept on rolling, but I didn’t, and thus began a porno addiction which led to stealing, because I was too young to buy. They say Prono is an addiction as strong as cocaine. I’ve never had the drug, but I know it was only the power of God, seeking more of God, that finally delivered me from the Porno. It was not an easy battle, but I chose to, with the help of God, fight evil, rather than join it.

In conclusion: The personal story I am currently writing called: “Gotham”, should be a must read for every Christian who considers themselves “average”, but wonders what might be possible if they truly surrendered their will completely to God. For one thing, God will COVER you with his anointing, and the average Christian can be a Caped Crusader for God, fighting evil not in the way good people do, but in “the way” that ONLY God’s people can do.

Christians were originally called people of “The Way”.  Do you get it now?

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“Do You have your Gotham?” > Chapter Ten

THE ENCOUNTER III > This story is written as if fictional, but it is not, I’m living this every day. Have you heard a call in your heart saying, “Gotham needs You?” This is one man’s attempt to take up the mantle of being a Caped Crusader. I am caped in God’s Covering, and Indianapolis is my Gotham.

CHAPTER TEN

Don stood there on the cold sidewalk and staring at this strange parking meter device. He had already swiped his card twice and then proceeded to do something wrong, something out of order, only to have to start over again, and it was very cold! “When did parking become so complicated? Am I going to figure this out or not? If I can just get past this stupid meter the Library is right behind me and I can get inside. How is it we hear your voice, Lord? What made me think of Chris? How is it I find myself “downtown”, learning about this new place I do not know, and yet I sense it is going to play a part. Okay, machine, this is your last chance. It’s you or me. One of us is going to die here and it’s not going to be me! Finally! I’m not sure what I did, but it shows two hours of time. I’ll take it. And look who just pulled up behind me. Chris.”

It was a great reunion on that cold city sidewalk. The sun was shinning and made you feel good even if it was cold. “Hey, Chris, what is all that stuff packed in your minivan?”

“That’s our food pantry. It’s part of the outreach we do. Lets get inside and I’ll tell you all about it.”

Don was amazed as Chris escorted him into the renovated Central Library. He remembered the old Library and it was nothing to brag about, but this! This was awesome! The entry opened into a big gathering area complete with snack and coffee shop and tables. So they each ordered a coffee and sat down at a table to catch up on what had been going on with each of them. Chris was amazed to find out that due to a back injury, Don had been on a one year sabbatical with God and was just now beginning to venture out in what God was showing him.

Likewise, Don was amazed to find out Chris had become a “Church Planter” with Southern Baptist and currently had an outreach developing in an inner city apartment complex. In no time at all Don had found an open door to inner city ministry by aiding Chris in Church Planting! However, he also knew God had planted something of his own in him, and somehow these two visions could aid each other. Before they knew it an hour and a half had already passed and they had not even explored the Library yet.

From the open coffee shop area he could see the Library rising up six levels, but he had no idea what Chris was about to show him. As the tour began, Don was amazed. First he was shown probably five hundred computers with Internet access, and all of it free for the using! This was middle of the day and most of the computers were in use. These same people could just as easily go to his blog site! The one God had him specially prepare, “Broken Wings that Soar!” The potential was obvious! Chris pointed out that most inner city people have their day at the Library to do all their on-line business. He also explained how all the city Libraries are strategically located near IndyGo bus stops, which gave easy transportation to all the Libraries. Anyone could get there whether they had a car or not.

As excited as Don was, the tour was not over yet. On at least three of the floors were very nice meeting rooms, that could seat eleven at a time, complete with a large table and white board for teaching, and completely free for the use! What a facility to aid his outreach to inner city! But how would it happen? How would it work? As yet he did not know, but God had just added a new dimension to things, and if God had so easily and quickly done this, he would also do the rest.

When Chris and Don parted that day, Don was set to help Chris at his next meeting at the apartment complex. He was looking very forward to already having opportunity, and with a young man he had relationship with from many years ago as a youth minister. “You’re amazing, Lord. You had all this planned, didn’t you. How is it we hear your voice even though it is not an audible thing, and yet we do, there is no denying it. Unbelievers think we are crazy. Imagining things. But look what those crazy imaginings has led to. The chess board has moved again. Two more very important things coming up though. One, I need a job. The right job. Something that will be an aid to ministering, not a detriment. That won’t be easy, Lord. And two, my meeting with Pastor tomorrow. If something drastic don’t change there soon, I’ll start the new year in a new church. Let me hear your voice, Lord, so I can follow. Gotham needs me. Yes, even me.

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“Do you have your Gotham?” > Chapter Nine.

THE ENCOUNTER III > This story is written as if fictional, but it is not, I’m living this every day. Have you heard a call in your heart saying, “Gotham needs me?” This is one man’s attempt to take up the mantle of being a caped crusader, caped in God’s Covering, for his city. Indianapolis is my Gotham.

CHAPTER NINE

“The downtown Central Library? Well, no, I have not been there since they remodeled. Isn’t that a ways for you to drive? Okay. Works for me. 10:00 a.m. on Thursday. Got it. See you then.” Don clicked off the cell phone and sat back in his chair rather amazed. Facebook had been successful. It took a couple weeks to get back into it, and then send a “friend request” to the young man named Chris. It had only taken a few days and a meeting was now set, but Don had to wonder what God was doing?

In his younger days Don had been heavily involved with youth ministry. During those many years Chris had been one of the young guys he had worked with, but he was thirty years old and had a family of his own now. Over the years their paths had crossed from time to time, but the last crossing had been at least two years ago, and why had God brought him back to mind? How many other people he could have thought of, but no, it had been Chris, and now it was set.

Even more puzzling was the meeting place. Since Don was not working he had offered to meet any time and any place, and Chris lived north east of downtown by quite a ways. Why not meet at Castleton? Or Pendleton? “Hhmm, this is very curious, Lord. I haven’t said anything to Chris about my interest in downtown, and yet he wants to meet at the Central Library? Says he wants to show me what is available there. Okay, Lord. I know you’re doing something and I shouldn’t be surprised, right? After all, we have a lot of prayers going, and you are ordering my steps. I can hardly wait till Thursday!”

“Speaking of prayers, Lord. You know this Prayer Life Group that no one has been coming to? The one that has been at my house for months now. The one I remodeled the room for. What am I supposed to do with this? I’ve invited and invited. Everyone is too busy to pray! Well…okay, not everyone. I have enjoyed those early morning prayer meetings at Charity Church. Don, Rick, Pastor Paul, and a few others. It has been so precious. I’m not sure what I would have done without their prayer support on this downtown mission. It’s just not happening at the other Church, Lord. I’ve been there over three years and it’s just not happening for me at least. Maybe there is a change in the wind? I need to talk to Pastor. A lot of things are changing right now, as I am searching this new mission. Maybe that is going to change too? Guess I need to set another meeting.”

Flipping his phone open and searching the number, the call quickly goes forth. “Hey Pastor, how you doing today? Good. Hey, when can we get together and talk?”

Another meeting was set. So many pieces on the chessboard of life. This move, that move; this knight, and that castle. Strongholds over a city. Evil in the streets. A Dark Knight is invading in the cover of the unknown. This move, that move. This prayer, that prayer. Words spoken, prophetic visions, obedience and faith. What shall be the shape of this thing when all is said and done? It takes a seeker to find out. It takes a person willing to lay it all on the line and follow that voice no matter where it leads. But first it takes a person who can HEAR. Let him who hath ears, HEAR.

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“Do you have your Gotham?” > Chapter Eight

THE ENCOUNTER III > This story is written as if fictional, but it is not, I’m living this every day. This is one man’s attempt to take up the mantle of being a caped crusader for God. I am caped in God’s Covering, and Indianapolis is my city. God says, My Gotham needs me.

Chapter Eight

The next time Don rode the bus back into downtown, he was ready, blog site cards in his pocket, and wouldn’t you know, it just happened a Christian Ladies Convention was in the city. Coming up an escalator he found the Panera Bread with a line backed clear out the door! “What in the world is going on?” He saw Bibles and Christian books in hands and on tables. In no time at all he had discovered an opportunity to hand out blog site cards, and so he did, but this was not really his target audience.

He only handed out a few before finding himself back in the Garden Center, sitting on a bench and watching all the moving people again. “What is it, Lord? What’s the next step? How do I reach those people? The ones not already carrying Bibles in their hands.”

He looked at his possible points of employment he had written down. As of yet he had applied at none, but it had to be downtown. Starbucks? Chick-fil-A? Subway? These were the main possibilities. If he wanted to meet people, and make connections, food offered his best chances. He was a little nervous about being the old man amongst so many young people, but he decided he could play the role of “grandpa” if needed, for surely that is how he would be seen.

“Time to get some more prayer power going,” he concluded.

Don was actively involved in a small church of around forty people, but he also had a close friend in another church who had asked him to join them for early morning 6:00a.m., Tuesday morning prayer. Now he had tried to get a prayer group going at his church, but so far it just wasn’t working, and here was another church asking him to join them, and so he would. It would not be easy at 6:00 a.m., a definite sacrifice, but Batman had his way to save a city, and so does the caped crusaders of God.

“Can’t get too much prayer. This has got to be soaked in prayer. I need your creative wisdom, Lord. I need my steps ordered of you supernaturally. People are tired of the same old kind of out reaches. Got to be something different, fresh, new, exciting, and especially anointed! My blog site is ready. I have this tool but it is not enough of itself. I don’t have the whole picture yet.”

Thinking about his own prayer time that morning, “What about Chris, Lord? Why did he come to mind when I was praying today? I haven’t seen that young man in at least two years. I wonder what he is doing now? Still selling insurance? You want me to find him? Hhmmm, I don’t know. He moved way out east and northward somewhere. Facebook? You want me to try facebook again? DO I HAVE TOO? Okay.”

Another manhunt. A connection lost in time. God’s bounty hunter would hunt and find as the pieces of the puzzle slowly come together. Soon…many pieces are about to fall, but first…more prayers.

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“The Encounter III” > GOTHAM 12/8/14

“THE ENCOUNTER III” > The story is written in fictional form, but it is not fiction, I am living this every day. Signed: Don.

CHAPTER TWO

Don was anxious to get a feel for downtown, but it was Wednesday and there was Church tonight. Nevertheless, he still felt led to do it, and if he was going to, then he had to do it right. “It’s not by might, nor by power, but by thy Spirit, Lord.” Have we forgotten what that means? I think we have.”

His coffee was half gone as he pondered, still setting in the dark and journal by his side. “I had forgotten, Lord. I know you have your remnant. You always have your remnant, but I don’t think they are around me. Who’s preaching it? I don’t hear them anywhere. You had to almost break my back to slow me down enough to hear. I hear ya, Lord. Push the plate back. Fast. I’m going out tonight on a spiritual walk-about. I will fast this whole day until sometime tonight…downtown…I’ll know when it is right. By thy Spirit, Lord. Have we forgotten what that means? If anything supernatural is going to come of this, I’m a Priest. I’m gonna do it right this time, Lord. I’m bringing back the ‘old ways’. The devil is going to know a ‘caped’, a ‘covered’, an ‘anointed’ crusader has come to town.”

“This is war, Satan. Yeah, that’s right, I’m talking to you. It’s no secret. You’ve heard my prayers. No sense being bashful about this. God is sending me into the streets of downtown and you already know it, already planning your devices and setting your traps. We might as well be honest about this, I see your face on a ‘wanted poster’ on every wall, and I’m God’s Bounty Hunter. I come in the name of the Lord, in his priesthood, and there will be sacrifice. I’m not the fool I used to be, Satan, when I used to fight you on your terms. I’m coming in the name of Jesus, and I’m coming for you. There will be sacrifices, and I will remember who the real enemy is. It is not my fellow-man, but it is you Satan. It is you. The evil running rampant in the streets is you. My fights not with them, my fight is with you. I fight ‘for’ them, to see you defeated in their life, and so I pray, and I fast, and I come to you in the power of a Priest, for what is a Priest of Christ about if it is not sacrifice? And what is love if it is not sacrificial? Have we forgotten, Lord? I think we have. Thank you for reminding me, Holy Spirit.”

Church service ran later than normal that night, and as Don climbed into his black 1990 Dodge Ram pick-up, it was already dark. He slammed the door, and then slammed it again because it did not always catch the first time. He sat there for a minute listening within, to his soul. He had not expected Church to run this late, did he still feel led to catch a bus downtown? He had studied it out on the Internet. He needed exact change, $1.75. The 10th street bus stop was closest to his home and it ran straight downtown. He would be walking the streets after dark, but there would still be plenty of lights and activity. He could pray at Monument Circle, get a feel for things, set on a bench in the Garden Center and watch people below, assuming he survived the bus trip.

“Yes, I still feel to go. Grab the lion by the throat and don’t look back.” He turned the key in the ignition switch and duel pipes rumbled to life. He liked the sound of that thunder, because that is the way he felt.

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“Do you have your Gotham?”

Part Three of “The Encounter” just starting! Not fiction but REALITY. Some times reality really can be stranger than fiction. Details below.

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