Monday, March 28, 2011

Rest in Peace

You've heard it, I have too. Just recently I was it again as someone wish the departed "rest in peace". I immediately began to remember the words of Jeremiah which say:

They have healed the brokenness of My people superficially,Saying, "Peace, peace, But there is no peace". Jeremiah 6:14.

No there is no peace outside of Jesus the "Prince of Peace". As a matter of fact most Christians fail to dwell in peace in spite of peace being one of the specific named fruits that the Holy Spirit brings with Him when He takes up residence in a new believer.

That discussion I will keep for another time however. Today to focus is on the empty wish of peace for the recently departed.

There will be anything BUT peace for those who die without Jesus! We too easily forget the horrific future of the damned! If we properly understood the ugliness or the horror awaiting our family and friends our prayers and our witness would take on a whole other dimension.

Nor will peace be an issue for the redeemed. The radiating joy and fullness will overwhelm every other sense. Gone are all weeping. Gone are all troubles. Gone are all concerns. Only jubilant celebration and overriding sense of wonder!

No there is no peace except for those who fully understand what Jesus did for us. It is coming to grips with the "desparate-ness" of who we really are and the grandeur of who Jesus is and what He has done that fully sets us free from worry and fret.

Consider an invitation to fall in love with Jesus! He been calling you into the love relationship that He did all of the work for. The only thing that stands in your way are religion and your preconceived conception about God! Flee from these shackles and run to Jesus!

Monday, March 21, 2011

What Do You Want Jesus To Do For You?

Gathered together in the Prayer Room at our church during the ongoing services and praying as the Holy Spirit leads us a guy walked into the room for prayer. After he sat down and we concluded the current train of prayer, I looked at this guy that I have known for some time and asked, did you come in here for prayer?

He responded with the great physical ordeal that he was facing along with all of the possible negative outcomes. After he went on about his issues for a few minutes, I asked him directly; "What do you want Jesus to do for you"

He responded to my direct question by returning to his list of dim possibilities as if I had not heard them the first time.

This told me much. He came in not for real prayer but as a good-luck charm that he could add to his charm bracelet. He was so immersed in his "death spiral" that he couldn't even hear my question. What religious teaching had instructed him to was to wallow in his tough situation.

Jesus simply doesn't care to hear all of the aches and moans. He already knows our troubles far better and we do ourselves. Jesus lamented, one day, "will the Son of Man find faith on the Earth when he returns?" Faith an endangered species today. Far preferable to faith is the certainty of a paycheck, a mortgage payment, dependable car and even a terrible illness.

So let me ask you, "what do you want Jesus to do for you?"

Oh, don't tell me, I can do nothing that you yourself can't to. Just tell Him?

Monday, March 14, 2011

Open For Business

I advise you to buy from Me gold refined by fire so that you may become rich, and white garments so that you may clothe yourself and the shame of your nakedness will not be revealed; and eye salve to anoint your eyes so that you may see. Revelation 3:18

For Sale: Pure gold, crystal white garments and precious healing eye salve.

There is only one place where these items can be purchased and the price for each is impossibly high. these will not be found at the local mall or, even, online. They can be purchased from only a single source.

We live in a filthy world. We are surrounded by filth and, unfortunately, the filth doesn't remain on the outside as only someone else's problem. We easily and quickly exchange the things of exquisite value for shiny trinkets of momentary pleasure and fleeting happiness.

Oh, the things our eyes behold. We are flooded with input but seldom do we really see.

Yes, we could use a little updating of our possessions. A taste of true riches perhaps; a brand new "outfit" to dazzle the crowds and/or renewed eyes that see the unseen!

Don't get your checkbook out just yet for, you see, the cost to buy these clarifying and life changing things goes far beyond the mundane of a paltry checkbook. It will cost you absolutely everything! Oh, you certainly can choose to hold onto the things that you think are not worth surrendering for the prize offered. No one will force you to make such a wild and reckless decision. It is only true faith that will compel you to open the door to the wild and recklessness of walking in wealth beyond measure, righteousness overflowing and an insight to a world beyond ordinary vision.

There exists one singular merchant for these fine goods. He has sufficient inventory to meet any request.

Jesus calls: I advise you to buy from Me...

Monday, March 7, 2011

Blessing and Vindication

“Who may ascend the hill of the LORD? Who may stand in his holy place? He who has clean hands and a pure heart, who does not lift up his soul to an idol or swear by what is false. He will receive blessing from the LORD and vindication from God his Savior. Such is the generation of those who seek him, who seek your face, O God of Jacob. Selah Lift up your heads, O you gates; be lifted up, you ancient doors, that the King of glory may come in. Who is this King of glory? The LORD strong and mighty, the LORD mighty in battle. Lift up your heads, O you gates; lift them up, you ancient doors, that the King of glory may come in. Who is he, this King of glory? The LORD Almighty‑‑ he is the King of glory. Selah” (Psalm 24:3‑10).

We fight so many battles; we carry such heavy loads and, day after day, we seem to get nowhere. Wouldn't a little "vindication" be nice?

“Who may ascend the hill of the LORD?" is the question. Surely not me who is so terribly dysfunctional most of the time. Worse, because dysfunction can be excused, I purposely and stubbornly choose my own way most of the time.

"Who may stand in his holy place?" Surely not me?! Nothing as unholy as me and my mind could qualify!

'He who has clean hands and a pure heart, who does not lift up his soul to an idol or swear by what is false'
There it is; clean hands, nope. Pure heart; not even close. Let's not even open the "searing by what is false" issue.

Does any of this surprise or disappoint God? No, He is pretty much fully aware of all my issues. He knows!

Hence: Jesus!

If I wasn't so messed up; Jesus would have been unnecessary! If the gulf between the requirements for he who could ascend God's hill and me was not so vast a simple bridge might be constructed.

No, it took Jesus and only Jesus.

On my very best days my hands are not clean and my heart is not pure. But even on my very worst days Jesus is still Jesus and His blood is still pure!

Therefore, the psalmist can encourage us to "Lift up your heads" If we would just simply understand that Jesus and His blood is enough, all of our battles would become His! "He will receive blessing from the LORD and vindication from God his Savior".

Agree with Him! Agree with Him about who you really are and agree with Him about who He is and all that He has done to qualify you to walk up that hill.