2015 Nuggets In The Sand pt. 2

This is part 2 of a collection of things from 2015.  Some are just thoughts about life and others are things a Friend said to me or reminded me of.

My purpose is to re-purpose.

The only way to lose is to give up the fight.

I am convinced to be simultaneously wise and harmless is a spirit led tightrope walk only possible by grace.   Matthew 10 talking to me.

Life is best when what I need and what I want are the same thing.

My leader is not super popular, anyone want to join me? 🙂
And all nations will hate you because you are my followers. But everyone who endures to the end will be saved. (Matthew 10:22 NLT)

I am the fool that says:
I know the one who made the stars, placed the mountains steep, spread oceans far.
I am the one that looks above for words of hope, to learn of love.
I’ve been given the world, was slave now free and long for a home I cannot see.
I am a fool forever to be the prince of a King who is coming for me.

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Right heart or right behavior?  
Right hearts always eventually lead to right actions. Pharisees demanded right action before change of heart and received stern rebuke for doing so.

The goal is both. Jesus gets both.

For good reason, we are suspicious of things that are free.
I would be a rich man in this world if I sold what I am offering for free. I would give everything I have in this world for the life and peace that was given to me. Eph. 2:8-9

If my desire is vengeance, I am probably fighting the puppet instead of the puppet master. #spiritleadme

Our fight is not against people on earth but against the rulers and authorities and the powers of this world’s darkness, against the spiritual powers of evil in the heavenly world. (Ephesians 6:12 NCV)

Your anger and concern over injustice ever make you want to destroy something? 

Jesus felt the same way.  
The Son of God came for this purpose: to destroy the devil’s work. (1 John 3:8 NCV)
#knowyourenemy

Inferior opponents making threats are funny.
The kings of the earth prepare to fight, and their leaders make plans together against the LORD and his appointed one.

But the one who sits in heaven laughs; the Lord makes fun of them. (Psalms 2:2, 4 NCV)

Current events and the responses in these times remind me of something a friend of mine said a while back.
“Because of the increase of wickedness, the love of most will grow cold” (Matthew 24:12 NIV)
#keepthefaith #guardyourheart

Westboro may protest funerals in Chattanooga (following shooting on military personnel here).   Most all of you know I am a pastor. Why? Because Jesus is the best thing that humanity ever encountered.  The world hates religion and for good reason. I hate religion too.
Religion says “fix yourself you loser”. It is man’s attempt to fix his problems by saying “try really hard, follow the rules and if you are good enough, by some random chance you may find life.” Jesus isn’t religion. Jesus said, “I know you are broken and have problems. Your efforts can never fix the problem. You can never pay the price or set yourself free from the control and power of sin so I will give my life to save yours. It’s a free gift to anyone who will receive it.

There was ONE group of people that Jesus condemned. Religious people that condemned people and never offered hope or solutions for freedom and life.

Westboro Baptist = religion.
Don’t confuse them with Jesus just because they use his name.

No need to covet something else when you value what you’ve been given.   #stewardship

External worship calms internal fears.
One of the first things fear tries to do is silence your voice and take your focus off the One who is greater. Don’t be silent!
Worshipers win.

 

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Don’t fight the puppet!    You wear yourself out stomping a sock while the puppet master laughs at you from around the corner.

For the sake of relationship, there is a time to speak and a time to be silent.

 

Faith sees destiny and declares it now.
What is the plan and purpose for that individual, city or nation?
Build or destroy? Your words are more than just noise in the air.

“As long as what happened to you is bigger than what God did for you, you will stay where you are.”   Christine Caine

“If we don’t do what the English says, there is no use in knowing the Greek and Hebrew.” C. Caine

 

Sometimes the most loving thing God does for me is hold the line and not give in.
The challenge for me is to learn that love is always strong and often it is tender but sometimes it is unyielding.

The lens we see through colors every situation we view.

You have a lot to offer in your tool bag today. Load up on good news and give it away! 
1. Good news – God saves 

2. Healing for broken hearts

3. Freedom to anyone stuck in the power of sin and darkness

4. Good news of God’s favor 

5. Good news God will defeat your enemies

6. Comfort for those who have suffered loss in this world 
The Spirit of the Sovereign Lord is on me, because the Lord has anointed me to proclaim good news to the poor. He has sent me to bind up the brokenhearted, to proclaim freedom for the captives and release from darkness for the prisoners, to proclaim the year of the Lord’s favor and the day of vengeance of our God, to comfort all who mourn, (Isaiah 61:1-2 NIV)

Do not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good. (Romans 12:21 ESV)

I always want to eat better until I see a piece of pie.

Most of the time when I think I need more I just need to be more grateful for what I already have.

Often we want the blueprint but only receive instructions for the next step.

Consider this:
1. Is it the right time? Are you ready? Are others in the equation ready?

2. Do I value relationship or knowledge more? Where is my security – in knowing the path or walking side by side with the one that will insure I get to the end alive and well?

Trust in the Lord with all your heart; don’t rely on your own intelligence. Know him in all your paths, and he will keep your ways straight. (Proverbs 3:5-6)

Proverbs 27:6 Faithful are the wounds of a friend, but the kisses of an enemy are deceitful.
“Do I make it cost someone to tell me the truth?” K. Vallotton
We have all been on both sides of this one probably. Do I dish some kind of “punishment” if someone tells me something I didn’t want to hear – silent treatment, blind argument or defense of self, intimidation, aggressive behavior etc. Fear causes us to self defend, but grace is available when I trust a friend.

Everyone is being driven by something.

What is in the driver’s seat of your life?

Sometimes we have to deal with the stubborn place to get to the secret place (place of peace and rest in God).

The only safe place to deal with the stubborn place is the secret place. Often we want to wait til we get the stubborn place fixed before we go back to the secret place when it is the only safe place for it.

Should we scratch “leadership development” for servant development?
“But among you it will be different. Whoever wants to be a leader among you must be your servant,

For even the Son of Man came not to be served but to serve others and to give his life as a ransom for many.” Matthew 20:26, 28 NLT

Delivery notice – package at the door.
If someone gave me a gift, it would seem strange to just shrug my shoulders, say an obligatory thank you and leave the gift unopened and un-received. 
““For this is how God loved the world: He gave his one and only Son, so that everyone who believes in him will not perish but have eternal life.”

John 3:16 NLT
Believe – def. to put my trust in his ability to save

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“I’m sorry.”

Those little words may not seem like a big deal but they could make the difference between a life of pain and bad decisions and a life well lived.  
People wonder. Am I alone in my pain? Do you hurt for what happened to me? Does it matter to you?  

You can’t fix the damage that you or someone else caused but you can let someone know, “Hey, you aren’t alone. Even if just in a small way, I hurt because you are hurting.”  
If you were not taught to use those words as a child or never heard those words in your family, there is a good chance you learned to hurt alone and could tend to let others hurt alone. Other times we find it easier to apologize to strangers and acquaintances than those closest to us. What if apology or the words “I am sorry” to show empathy aren’t weakness but strength?

I saw a quote the other day stating that an apology is not even always saying “I was wrong and you are right.” Sometimes it is just a way of saying I value you more than I value my ego or my pride.  

You want to change the world today? Let someone know they don’t hurt alone.

The trial will be a master that stops you or a servant to bring you to the next level.   The trial reveals the truth or lies we hold inside.

“You love him even though you have never seen him. Though you do not see him now, you trust him; and you rejoice with a glorious, inexpressible joy. The reward for trusting him will be the salvation of your souls.”

1 Peter 1:8-9 NLT

Joy – The awareness and celebration of his presence and goodness toward you at this very moment
Hope – The confident expectation of his presence and goodness at work in my future situations

1. No surprises going on in the news – my leader already coached me for this day and season.

2. One of the greatest battles of last days will not be between nations or people groups but the issue of offense – know your enemy and guard your heart.

3. We have a message and it is Good News.
“Jesus told them, “Don’t let anyone mislead you,
And many will turn away from me and betray and hate each other.
And the Good News about the Kingdom will be preached throughout the whole world, so that all nations will hear it; and then the end will come.”

Matthew 24:4, 10, 14 NLT

“Fur unto us a kid is born” Randall’s Messiah (Handel’s distant redneck descendant)

“The news that gets through you reveals the news that gets to you.”

 

Feeling hopeless or in despair?

I woke up this morning from a dream where there was some kind of mental/prison institution. My son, Luke, had been stuck there and we were able to rescue him. For some reason, in the dream, I wanted to go there and was contemplating suicide, but before I entered the building Jerry and Molly Allen (leader friends of mine) drove up and stopped me from going in. As soon as they drove up it was like I snapped out of a mental fog or haze.

I believe the Spirit of God was speaking a few things to me:

1. Don’t fight alone – we can get to dangerous places that we don’t have to go if we would just ask for help – James 5:16

2. Many have been fighting feelings of hopelessness and despair

3. The truth is God wants to do something great in your life in this season and you have reason for great hope and expectation – find someone that will agree in prayer for God’s purposes in your life.

Often the place most opposed in your life is the place God wants you to be free and even use your victory to set others free.

“You intended to harm me, but God intended it all for good. He brought me to this position so I could save the lives of many people.”  Genesis 50:20

“Grace was the life raft I decided to put more confidence in than my ability to tread water.”

 

When you look for the bad in mankind expecting to find it, you surely will. Pollyanna

 

You have help today – look up!
“I lift up my eyes to the mountains— where does my help come from? My help comes from the Lord, the Maker of heaven and earth.”

Psalm 121:1-2 NIV

 

A spiritual Lone Ranger lives in danger.

Remember, you might be a tough cookie but you’re still just a cookie – we need each other.   When a predator wants to kill his prey, the first thing he does is isolate them. If you find yourself tempted to be isolated, be aware the enemy is trying to give a knockout blow.

Hebrews 10 – don’t forsake the assembling

 

Good News alert:

News is a billion dollar industry. I’m gonna be a newscaster.

“But he said, “I must proclaim the good news of the kingdom of God to the other towns also because that is why I was sent.”” Luke 4:43

You have always been loved by the Father who dreamed a completely unique you. He went to hell and back to rescue you from the power of sin and death and invites you to a forever relationship with Him if you want it.   He promised life would not be easy but He would be with you to the end offering comfort and peace completely beyond and not dependent on circumstances and surroundings. He offers to not just be near but to live inside to transform and enable you to become who you were created to be and bring hope and life to anyone who wants it.

He said he gives ability to share good news with those that need it.
If you don’t need good news or are satisfied with bad news feel free to disregard.

His good news is changing my life.
#goodnews #msnbc #foxnews  #cnn #terrorism  #overcometheworld   #obama  #trump #clinton

 

You attract what you are and will either appreciate or annoy what you are not.

We need each other.

 

I am more and more convinced that you don’t win arguments, you win people.

If you win your brother, your argument might carry weight. 

Anyone have input on how to do that? A couple thoughts:Quick to listen, Slow to speak, Vulnerability

 

Trusted friends that you invite to tell you the truth will drastically reduce the number of classes you take in the school of hard knocks.

#fightalonewintogether #abobwelldone

 

Love your neighbor as you love your selfie.

How ironic is it that freedom is not possible without boundaries?

 

Warm Toll House cookies and ice cream are the kind of things I eat and think, “that is worth being a pant size too big for.”

 

The inability to have peace of mind is most often an invitation to be with the Prince of Peace that gives what this world cannot offer.

 

When I dismissed what I could not understand, I sometimes forfeited what I could have had.

We need to make it clear to kids that emotional and physical abuse will not be tolerated.  These days everyone should love the “snitch” for obvious reasons

Unforgiveness seems like a great idea until bitterness sets in and you eventually become what you hate.    Give what you have been given. #forgiveness

 

The greatest weapon against darkness is simply turning on the light.

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