Obtuse

Image

There’s a great scene from the movie “The Shawshank Redemption” where the lead character Andy is sitting in the prison wardens office and the truth about his incarceration has been revealed…the Warden obviously wants Andy to stay in the system because he is deriving benefit from Andys personal skills…Andy is more about the truth…and he just cannot keep his mouth shut, he asks the Warden “How could you be so obtuse?”…

Of course it gets him thirty days in the hole…punishment, because the last thing the system wants is the truth…

As much as I wish I could keep my big mouth shut I find I identify with Andy’s lack of discretion…even when I know it might cost me or create a situation where the consequences are more painful than the status quo…

It’s not even noble at times…just a blunt in your face, “How can you be so indifferent to the dissonance of your life and your message?”…I get really pissed off when people say they are about grace but teach the tithe, talk about a culture of honor but silence those whom they disagree with, pursue revival but ignore the widow…it’s all noise to me and seems…well obtuse.

Frankly this is the part of me that is most like me that I would most like to change…but it’s a bit like trying to get baking soda and vinegar to abandon their properties…probably not going to happen without modifying some essential elements…

The real downside to me is I have not exactly been innocent in regards to the issues I take issue with…I taught the tithe and did the offerings for years, pumping people every Sunday to “give so God could open up the storehouse of blessings and sweep you into your destiny”…

I recently had one of those peripheral thoughts:

“If time is money, what does it say to your value that God included you in the resurrection, you have been given an endless life, you have no limit to time anymore”…

I have chased revival until my knees hurt, often failing to notice the divorced, the fatherless, the widow sitting next to me, all the while pretending that revival could fix what compassion’s absence had not addressed…

And the version of a culture of honor I helped develop really only had honor if you met it’s terms, disagree and you were given the label “orphan spirit”, “wounded”, or simply immature…some like me were even labelled as “poison”…how is that honoring the image of God in another, to shut them out because you yourself are afraid of them?

“We must protect the flock”…whatever.

Obtuse.

I suppose the good news is the movie ends in a redemption…a beach somewhere…white sand and a boat…

And maybe that’s where I am headed…once I figure out how to divest myself of the sentence, the “doing my time for the crime” mindset that has me focused on the obtuse…

A Caribbean beach in the spirit…and maybe a friend or two who also escaped…

Advertisements

Healing

jesus heals a blind man 2

I grew up in a very Pentecostal background, we reached for the anointing oil long before we reached for aspirin…so much so my own kids never think to go to the hospital until the very last minute.

Besides being one who believes in a holistic life in general, exercise and sunshine, healthy lifestyle, it seems rather inconsiderate at best to live careless and then ask God to heal you.

In example when I hit fifty, I, like all my friends, got that incandescent inner tube around my middle…it made me look like an upright python who had swallowed a basketball since I am generally thin to begin with…everyone told me “It’s just life” and I stood there for a while pondered my fate and said “Not today sucker”.

I changed my diet, began living a more intentional lifestyle even fasting more…within three months I had eliminated my need for larger sized jeans and felt better.

Which brings me to my first point:

healing is much better lived as a lifestyle than as a crisis management service…there is a better way to live than in pain all the time.

Now I am aware that not everyone has a metabolism that allows for body change, and this also translates into “soul-ology”, not everyone can simply “overcome” or “Sozo” their way into a healthy self awareness and connection with others.

I am also aware that there are many many people who live with chronic pain, I would never want to imply that you can simply “believe” away your pain or that it is simply a mindset, this is not what I believe so please do not hear that…I cannot imagine the frustration and life drain of living with any chronic condition, it boggles the mind how people do it, they have my respect…but I do want them healed.

I’ve done the Sozo stuff, for those of you who do not know Sozo is a very intense Charismatic inner healing tool to get past very deep childhood and life trauma by letting the Holy Spirit direct the counseling session…I have seen people have break-through and I have seen people go through it like a hamster on a ┬árotating wheel, needing more and more sessions to get to the root.

To be fair I have done the in depth training and participated in enough sessions to know what I am talking about, some of it is helpful but much like the pharmaceutical industry there is a cottage industry of inner healing that creates a cycle of dependency on emotional drugs and intercession, and I am not using that word lightly, our own bodies have the capacity to create the most powerful drugs we can take, if you doubt that try adrenalin or watch a young man going through puberty. Sozo like every other inner healing or professional psychological process depends on our own souls to do the heavy lifting of being healed…fitting into society or relationships requires a standard of behavior that is self controlled, when you cannot do that society introduces drugs and the church introduces its own version of drugs.

Both have value…make no mistake about it, just like I would never ever diminish what medical science is doing to bring healing to human biology, I believe Sozo-like methods and social adaptive professionals have a very important part to play in our current journey towards wholeness.

Sozo has it’s uses but at the end of the day it is simply a deliverance tool.

And this brings me to my second point,:

I believe from my years and years of intense study of physical healing (from John Lake to John Wimber) and my experience of every inner healing movement since Derek Prince and Don Basham helped restore deliverance ministry to the church (among others) that the primary cause of most physical and emotional diseases is demonic…not all but easily the lions share.

Because of this, as part of a holistic emotional lifestyle, John Lake and Kenneth Hagin are part of my normal routine of devotional reading…my book list ALWAYS has something in remembrance of the miraculous to inspire my faith…if nothing else I read a chapter of “Ever Increasing Faith”…and the consensus I have accumulated in both personal experience and prolonged study is a growing body of truth that we have an enemy who is an alien force to our nature and our physiology and the fastest cure is expulsion.

Now before I go on…lets stand back and look at that argument from a purely “non-religious” mindset…I have just suggested that there is something or “someone” on the planet that invades our lives in both emotional social environments as well as physically.

From dental pain to OCD and split personality disorders, there is a good chance it is a spirit, a devil a demon, or mindset, whatever your particular world view is comfortable with, it probably is not your fault you are in pain, and even if it is, the pain is being caused by something you were not born to carry, it is alien and needs to go.

Of course from a non-Western mindset this is old hat, most cultures closer to the myth origins of life believe in a three tier world plane, while we in the West generally adhere to simply two-tiers, the “known” and the “unknown” , that which science can prove and the other arena that contains everything from miracles to Bigfoot and UFO’s.

Go into the bush in Africa or a village in Ecuador and they will tell you people get sick because of evil spirits, it’s only in our enlightened paradigm that we have eliminated this, primarily because we cannot see it on a slide tray under a microscope.

This is where I am going to break from a linear logical explanation and just cut to the chase:

No matter what you believe about life, there is no denying that truth has more power to bring healing and freedom than anything else in our world…

Let that filter through for a minute…and you can see the obvious truth in it…

Lets take cancer as an example…my little brother died from an aggressive form of cancer, and I prayed and fasted for his healing, he believed for his own healing, we used every avenue of truth at our disposal and the end result was not favorable to us, he died much younger than Gods will for him, I have no doubt of that, and he died after the first chemo treatment came back and the Doctor said “Go home die in peace or die in treatment, we cannot help you”.

On a cellular level Johns death was a lie that his physical body could not shake a lie that came in the form of cancer cells invading healthy organs and no amount of science could change it at the time.

The lie manifest in this reality, we do now yet know how to cure it, there is a scientific explanation for what causes and cures it and our ignorance is simply everything we do not know about the truth yet…we live in the darkness but when the truth comes the lie will be obvious, because when the truth comes a light comes on and the lie is exposed.

If you simply jump over into a purely academic approach, using nothing more than biology and science…the truth remains we are very close to cracking the cancer code, it is my belief it will be cured in my lifetime, whether by discovery of diet, causes or cures, cancer has a limited operational future on our planet…and the cure will be simply truth.

We will discover the truth about what causes and what cures it and when we do, it is done.

In our Western model we assume we simply do not know, but that is not exactly a Biblical worldview, the more accurate perspective is that we are currently living in darkness about our healing, when the truth comes we will be free.

In the meantime, Jesus as the truth has a very good track record of healing cancer without science, because ultimately every disease or every social condition can be cured by Him and he makes the claim to not simply know the truth but also to be the truth.

If this is true in the physical realm, it is true in the emotional and social realm, every bit of pain in your life can be cured by some kind of truth.

Financial, emotional, physical, relational…every place that darkness has some kind of dominion will be cured when the truth of Gods provision invades.

So stand back a minute…look at the landscape I have just painted…there is something alien in our world and it is destructive to both health and life, it is a parasite that destroys hope, happiness and joy, and the cure is quite simple, it is Jesus who is the truth…

So no matter what you believe about the fall, about sin, about the consequences of bad behavior and the causes thereof, the cure is right in front of us and it is a person who calls himself Truth…

Truth is healing…healing releases life, life brings freedom…you shall know the truth and the truth shall set you free.

Now to take this off the page, to the next level so to speak…reverse the whole thing for a minute…lets start with he finished product, imagine yourself or anyone else you know who is in pain as completely whole, healed and restored…the reality that gets them there is the Truth as Jesus…so this informs the Incarnation, the birth of the Messiah…

Jesus is simply us in the healed and whole version.

When you see it, it can transform you…so when I read that “By his stripes I am healed”…I have to believe that I am in the equation somewhere…

He carried MY PAINS, MY DISEASES…and it was for a brief moment…three times in the New Testament this verse is used in direct connection to our physical healing being brought to us by Him, the Truth becoming our sin and sickness…

And it’s right there, right on the tip of my tongue…I cannot quite place my exact finger on it, but I am convinced that when we see it we will be whole…

Let’s remember the Biblical worldview that living in darkness is not a passive event, it is believing a lie about ourselves…

Jesus came as us…and He was whole…when I know this truth, I will be free…and so will you.

When you see the Truth about yourself…you will be healed…and Jesus came to reveal that very thing..He comes to show us the truth about ourselves…wholeness is ours, we are just in the dark about it.

In a final thought…if truth can set you free…and the truth is we are whole…then “expulsion”, deliverance, Sozo or inner healing really should not be that much work…if it is you’re doing it wrong.

You drive out darkness with light…not effort.

As usual your mileage may vary.

The Biggest “what if” ever!

fate-of-universe

So today…one of those odd sort of days…of course my mind is going and I watched a clever video on youtube…about these magical pvc creatures this man in Holland is making…he has spent his entire lifetime creating them and I will have a link at the end of this blog if you are interested…

But a thought entered my mind…and I realized it might be the biggest what if I have ever had…

What if God is dying?

No really…what if all of this planet, the creation, the incarnation, His dying on the cross…it is obviously headed somewhere…

What if God knows He is dying and wanted to leave something behind that could keep everything going before He left…?

Impossible you say, and I agree, but honestly we have no idea…maybe there’s some sort of terminal disease that only God can get, we just don’t have the measuring tools to know one way or another…

Impossible because through Him all things consist, and I agree…in Him we live and move and have our being…at this moment…

But what if He were trying to get us ready for another moment that we could not possibly understand…what would He need to do?

Well…He would obviously need to make children with His DNA who could carry on His legacy…

And what might that be?

Well without love it would not be anything worth leaving now would it…

What if God was simply trying to create children who could love the way He does so that just in case, if He did die or something…the universe would still have meaning…

They say love makes the world go round…

But what if it made everything go round…?

I know its a crazy thought, maybe the craziest thought I’ve had all year…but hey it’s only early December, plenty of time to think even more crazy ideas…

But this idea…that we were here to learn how to run things forever…

It would not really look any different than what we see now if the main thing was love, now would it?

Makes me want to grow a little more in love…just in case God died and we needed to run things…

As usual your love may vary…

Video

2014 The Great Awakening…

Image

So before you get completely upset at the end of this read, I will put out the press release now…this is not going to end the way you think it is.

It never does though, right?

Already the prophets are giving us the new word for 2014, unless of course they are the upgraded prophetic voices who have all shifted over to the Jewish Calender and it is now the year of the Gimel or camel or door, or I dunno, I don’t speak Hebrew…but then neither do they.

I started to read a word about the great awakening that is definitely coming this new year and as I did I felt that instead of waking up, this year we would actually see the church go deeper into slumber.

There I’ve put it out there for everyone to see, I am prophesying that instead of a great awakening the sleep will become deeper.

My chances of being more accurate than everyone else are actually quite good, better by pure numbers because in the last 15-30 years the Great Awakening has been prophesied and missed about 100% of the time…so I am on fairly safe prophetic ground to say,”nope, not this year, as a matter of fact the church will hit the snooze button more times than not”.

Now before you think this is all sarcasm and spittle, let me point out a few realities in the room…in the last two elections the Christian right has lost to the liberal humanistic socialist left like a jr. high girls team playing the Lakers, and of course the standard clarion call in response was “Take those seven mountains, God has given them to us!!!!”

And true to form we started having conferences on finding your convergence and taking your personal mountain, because heaven knows this is the stuff Jesus taught, and Paul was all about elevation and mountain climbing culture…that’s what the whole “Cloak I left at Troas” comment to Timmy was about…gotta gear up and take my place in the top mountain of Roman/Hebrew culture…

And in order to expedite this process we started having classes on taking over the business marketplace and a culture in the church that would release more and more supernatural power because frankly the natural power, (or really love), was just not getting the job done…we’ve been losing elections, enough said!

Just to rock the boat a little I’m going to go on record here and say that instead of the great revival and awakening we’ve been waiting on, the exact opposite is going to happen…if nothing more than to give God a target to disprove…instead of waking up, the church as we know it is actually going to sleep past her sell-by-date and miss the boat entirely.

Science will outpace our healing movements…making great discoveries in curing diseases…technology will dwarf the church in terms of creating better living conditions for the struggling masses of humanity, and the health industry will actually make life more comfortable for millions of suffering people.

Social movements will spring up from secular corners that will embarrass the church in terms of contrast, doing more good for the poor than all of our cathedral budgets combined…and there will be a wave of grassroots movements establishing justice for the marginalized and oppressed, the church will sleep through the whole thing instead focusing on getting to the top of its own little mound in the home-school playground.

The church as I see it now, will actually go further into the blankets, deeper under the pillow and the world will walk by looking at us drooling like a teenager in 5th period math class who stayed up to late and then fell asleep on the desk because the room was way to warm…

I am not offering this as a criticism…far from it, if this is what the church wants to do, God is more than happy to fluff the pillows with feathers falling in worship and gold dust to seal our golden slumbers, I am not at all suggesting that the miraculous will not happen, gold teeth, melting metal and jewels falling will go on as usual, there may even be a glory cloud or two, worship services will be off the charts on occasion and some people will get translated and see angels like birds see worms.

I will applaud every one of the events…and I will also cheer everyone on as the year of your convergence, the combination of all your experience and trials comes to head in one moment of bliss and power finally breaking the curse of generations for you and your family, go for it, and go with all the energy you can.

But do me a favor…on Dec.8th 2014 come back and visit this page…and come with an honest look, a view unafraid to tell the truth.

And if we did in fact have a great awakening, if the church did in fact take the 7 mountains and change our culture more than the world did, I will gladly stand here with you and apologize for being so doubtful, so wrong, I will humbly accept the rebuke of elders telling me to stop the negativity and give hope a chance. And on that day when our churches are filled to the walls with sinners repenting and movie stars and celebrities, and the lost who have withstood our agenda and the kingdom finally gets here and our world is changed, oh man oh man I will gladly take my beating and shut up.

But in this moment, I am tempted to wave my hand like a Jedi Knight and say “This is not the revival you are looking for”…because honestly…in 50 years of chasing this stuff…it has never ever happened…and when I look at history…it didn’t happen the way we like to portray it did in the first place.

I have a friend who paints a very clear picture of the Welsh revival, I think he wrote his thesis on it, and Dyfed has some very blunt realities that we have distorted and packaged as “awakening” that we keep trying to sell each and every December/New Year prophetic moment…it did not mean what we thought it meant…the pubs never did empty out and all of the churches were never full at the same time…and truth looks quite a bit different than the 100 year prophecy that William Seymor was supposed to have prophesied.

Now before you jump to some conclusion that I do not believe in a great awakening, let me correct that line of thinking, I absolutely believe in a great Awakening, and I believe it is already happening, what I do not believe is that it will happen in the church, the church for the most part will sleep through it…

The Awakening is going to happen in the world, and already is…it will happen as a Muslim girl stands in defiance of the Taliban and acts like the Spirit of Jesus would by saying, “Go ahead, Kill me, you do not intimidate me, I want my sisters to have an education”. it will happen every day as scientist lay down their lives looking for a cure to AIDs/HIV (while the church for the most part assumes those people just got what they deserved), and the Spirit of Christ will inspire them and they will find a cure, breaking through the barrier we slept through.

The awakening will happen as millions take to the street protesting lower than living conditions and wages for the oppressed and lower classes, demanding justice for excess and profit as that came at the expense of the widow and fatherless…and the church will hit the snooze button one more time because “Occupy” of course was a just bunch of hippies wanting anarchy.

And while the majority of the entertainment industry is looking for a story worth telling because they have a box of new ways to tell it, with now songs, new sounds, new CGI and special effects…the church will have one more conference on worship playing the same songs in the same key with the same leaders leading the same sheep in the same way we did for the last 5 years…all the time forgetting we have the most incredible story on the planet, but cannot seem to tell it unless we use the overhead projector…basically sleeping through the creative awakening happening in the rest of the planet…and it will be Symphonies made from recycled trash that plays the real story God wants to be played…

Unfortunately…I see the sad reality…that we will keep doing what we have been doing all along…just contributing a small footnote to the history of our world…because frankly we like it in our soft blankets of routine teaching, messages about how this year we will break off all financial hindrances, and how this will be the year that we finally awaken and the Spirit comes in like a flood, Glory falls like a meteor and our culture is changed so radically that either everyone repents, or Obama institutes Marshall law and herds us all into Fema camps to silence us…

Meanwhile…the world has been up and finished a ton of stuff before the coffee pot cooled down with Global warming…the church will sleep through the noise, because heaven knows the bride of Christ needs her beauty sleep…after all without starting one more house church, or one more revival prayer service we won’t be able to compete with the beauty that is out there now will we?

Just one final thought here…it might be easy to overlook…but it bears pointing out…if you for some reason are offended that humanity is improved, healed or brought out of oppression by the world and not the church, then may I suggest your love is really in need of an upgrade…because love would not care who did the better job, if it got done.

As usual your mileage may vary.

p.s. As for me…this is the year I think I get a tattoo…just saying.

minimum requirements…

Image

So I got to thinking about it…

What does love really need?

Love does not need hands, although it can use them to express kindness, gentleness…

Love does not need eyes…because it see’s from a different place…and can see what no natural eye can see

Love does not need lips, although I am sure it enjoys using them and passing words across them to bless another…

Love does not need ears, for it hears what is unsaid or even what is said without words…

Love does not need a nose to smell the fragrance it produces or to know when its object of affection is near…

Love does not depend on touch to gauge when it is received but enjoys the joy of imparting through touch…

And believe it or not love does not need the mind except to translate to the body of another what its intentions are…

All love needs…is another heart…because that’s what love is in its core…the life of a heart poured into another heart…back and forth life to life…love to love…

And because this is true…you do not need to see someones body to love them, but seeing them can increase the love…and when your eyes light up they know they are loved…

You do not need to hear someones voice to love them, but truly hearing them makes them know they are loved…

You do not need to touch someones skin to love them, but touching them imparts the kindness through he skin…and they feel loved…

You do not need any of your senses to love someone…because love is your heart poured into theirs…

All you need to love someone…is an available heart…

And every heart wants to be loved…

It cannot be any simpler than this…

The minimum love needs is…another…

And this explains creation…it’s why God made you…you were made because love needed someone to love…