Monday, May 25, 2015

The integrity of your own mind, soul, and conscience is sacred just as your right vertical relationship is.

Your obedience in sharing Christ's Gospel just to please God the Father is also that way. And witnessing in faith for His glory, this intentional world changing, this sharing your faith.. it's just way better when the believer has godly character, sincerity, and integrity. It's God's will that every born again believer have such. But living in God's righteousness comes before and includes ministering in His righteousness. Importing and maintaining what you've gained via faith in Jesus before exporting your faith to others is imperative. Nails it! 
"So you will walk in the way of the good and keep to the paths of the righteous. For the upright will inhabit the land, and those with integrity will remain in it.." Proverbs 2:20-21

"And as for you, if you will walk before me, as David your father walked, with integrity of heart and uprightness, doing according to all that I have commanded you, and keeping my statutes and my rules, then I will establish your royal throne over Israel forever, as I promised David your father, saying, 'You shall not lack a man on the throne of Israel.'" 1 Kings 9:4-5

"By this I know that you delight in me: my enemy will not shout in triumph over me. But you have upheld me because of my integrity, and set me in your presence forever. Blessed be the LORD, the God of Israel, from everlasting to everlasting! Amen and Amen." Psalm 41:11-13 

"Did he not himself say to me, 'She is my sister'? And she herself said, 'He is my brother.' In the integrity of my heart and the innocence of my hands I have done this. Then God said to him in the dream, 'Yes, I know that you have done this in the integrity of your heart, and it was I who kept you from sinning against me. Therefore I did not let you touch her.'" Genesis 20:5-6

"I will sing of steadfast love and justice; to you, O Lord, I will make music. I will ponder the way that is blameless. Oh when will you come to me? Will walk with integrity of heart within my house.." Psalm 101:1-2

"Whoever walks in integrity will be delivered, but he who is crooked in his ways will suddenly fall." Proverbs 28:18 

"And the Lord said to Satan, 'Have you considered my servant Job, that there is none like him on the earth, a blameless and upright man, who fears God and turns away from evil? He still holds fast his integrity, although you incited me against him to destroy him without reason.'" Job 2:3 

Friday, May 22, 2015

Who does God want to reach? The ひきこもり or 引き籠もり. The self-confined. The young, the hurting and the empty people. You.

Hikikomori (hiˌkēkəˈmôri):

A young adult who has withdrawn from social life and society, a recluse who fails to properly prioritize, is self cut off, often obsessed with TV, Internet and video games and rarely ever leaves one's room. As people refuse to leave their house or flat they start to think that their isolation from people is normal and they lose all interaction skills in their homes for say six months plus at a time. Could be mute and somewhat nocturnal–might not get the phone, the door or speak to anyone, often sleeps all day and emerges to visit the fridge and do their big screen stuff by night. 

Okay, so neglect, hurt, aimless hopelessness, and emptiness are all real. But choose to forgive and live footloose and fancy free - you won't be young forever. Make the most of each day and moment as you were designed to. Find out why you are here. Youth lasts about as long as smoke. 
So, remove sorrow, addictions, selfishness, grief, lazy-slothfulness, boredom, entitlement, passive-resentment and anger from your heart . Turn from sin–it destroys. Put away inner pain, porn, evil and time-wasting from you, because youth and the prime of your life are fleeting away. Live to give what will make a difference in your generation. Why feel sorry about all the squandering later on?   
Who does God want to Help with a capital H? The lonely self-confined Hikikomori: ひきこもり or 引き籠もり. You! Why? Cuz He loves you fiercely and has a meaningful, unique, excellent plan for you. Your life is no worthless accident!
"Remember your Creator in the days of your youth, before the days of trouble come and the years approach when you will say, 'I find no pleasure in them.'"  12/1eccl. 

"Though my father and mother forsake me, the LORD will receive me." 27/10psalm

"Turn to me and be gracious to me, for I am lonely and afflicted." 25/16ps.

"God sets the lonely in families, He leads out the prisoners with singing; but the rebellious live in a sun-scorched land." 68/6ps.niv

"A man of many companions may come to ruin, but there is a Friend who sticks closer than a brother." 18/24prov. The one you and I need most today is Jesus Christ. 

"It is nothing to die (please don’t make it happen).  It is frightful not to live (but any day of the week you can choose to die to selfish ways and really live)." — Victor Hugo, Les Misérables, emph.mine

#Also see 1Cor13:11#Ecclesiastes 12:1#Read and wisely apply the Bible

Thursday, May 21, 2015

Can you give.. or can you tell His Story when you don't really "feel His anointing" all? Sure you can. Are we to walk by feelings, by sight, or by faith?

Sometimes the Lord asks me to give what would appear to many something I don't feel I have to give. But then I think.. Wait, He can give me that so that I can give it away. Has he done that with you as well?

Believer, when you don't even feel like doin' it, you can share your story that leads to His Story and that's giving too. Yes, even when you might feel kinda down and out.. or like your body is totally out of it.. I mean energy or fuel so to speak.. God could ask you to speak. He can lead you to open your mouth in such a way that others will be led to God's living Word - Jesus! Other than worshiping Him, what beats that? Nothin'; null, zero does!

Is it really about how much you and I give and serve or is it more about how much love we put into both; about how directed we are by the God of selfless Love in what, how, and when we give and serve? 

There have been times before when He's asked me to serve when I've felt completely out of gas before, or to serve people when I've been sick. I even remember driving on the autobahn in Germany once to go preach near the Alps one night and then afterwards I could not find even one gas-station in the region that was still open in order to refuel for my drive home. The car was sputtering, it was actually 100% my fault for not reading up beforehand, but some friends and I there stopped to briefly pray about it. It wasn't super easy to get my car to start again, but that Audi actually made the entire 30 minute drive through falling the snow to my house in Augsburg. I was feelin' so relieved and grateful. Told Him so! Thank you Lord! 

Don't get me wrong on this.. I'm not at all telling you to serve when you are sick. Don't want to play Lord. I'd like to see you obey God first, and to be honest..also get to a pastor and a doctor that He leads you to. Not sure how it will go with you, how could I, but you can always trust the Lord. I'd say ask Him for wisdom and choose to apply.. to act wisely in obeying the Lord. Sure, daily obey Him more than you would any other human.

How cool that when we run out, we can by faith on any day of the week make a hefty love-withdrawal.  And the bank of God's perfect love up in heaven never ever goes bankrupt.

“We make a living by what we get. We make a life by what we give.”― Winston S. Churchill

Sure, God can ask me to help others when I'm feeling so weak inside though. Has done it before.. or He can also say go speak here or go there when I don't even know what to say.. at all ..or do that at a time when I didn't have any formal Bible education yet. Has happened before! He can tell me to tithe and give offerings at a time when I feel broke. He's done that and I was in need myself. Was blessed after I did cuz the Lord likes to show me and others that He is able. My problems have become His. Yes, I try to plan. I'm far from perfect but Jesus took full responsibility for me and my family's needs when I repented and asked Him in.  

Have you ever said, Lord, please forgive me for my unbelief, please regenerate, come in to be Lord of my life.. not just Savior or Lord in theory. I want You to my CEO to lead me daily, I really do. I choose to trust You even when the circumstances don't look so good.

“Happiness doesn't result from what we get, but from what we give.” ― Ben Carson

So what is God asking from me ..every single day of this year and of me for those following this year? What is God asking of me right now? He's asking for all of me now cuz He actually wants me more than what I can do for Him. And He loves me; has a predetermined plan for ALL of me body, soul, and spirit. Makes sense--Jesus Christ gave His life.. all of it for me.. now wants all of me. He wants all of you too!
“You can give without loving, but you cannot love without giving.” ― Amy Carmichael

“Do you not know that God entrusted you with that money (all above what buys necessities for your families) to feed the hungry, to clothe the naked, to help the stranger, the widow, the fatherless; and, indeed, as far as it will go, to relieve the wants of all mankind? How can you, how dare you, defraud the Lord, by applying it to any other purpose?” ― John Wesley

“For it is in giving that we receive.” ― Francis of Assisi

Those words challenge me to my core. Lord, in Jesus' mighty Name.. please help us now to have your persepctive, Your BIG and wise heart, Your trust in the Father, and to simply be more like You are. Need ya gobs. I want to depend on Your grace more!

I've seen and met my own fleshly nature before. Not handsome. I've seen my selfish ways before, and how much I lack spiritually, but I've also come to understand that God gives. He is the Giver of all givers. I wasn't born that way, but now want Him to give through me. And I cannot out-give him. Jesus gives and gives and gives some more. He will give me what I need when I need it. Even promised to do that for us and by faith we can claim that promise!

Does God lead you to give offerings when feeling needy at times? 

When we hear the Lord tell us to..  Try me.. Test Me in this.. it can feel like we're Him say Go jump over the moon! Lord, please forgive and help us believe even when the economy is really bad perhaps due to our nation's sinning as well as all the miss and under-informed voters who helped elect super lame leaders in our Land over us. 

May I ask you.. Have you heard God in Malachi 3:10 tell you to obey Him? I have. (No worries, I'm not asking or even wanting you to give to me. That's not the point of this. Prayer is. I simply want you to talk to, come to trust more, and obey Jesus regarding this area of giving). 

I know this mentioned verse needs to be looked at contextually and with all the other Bible verses dealing with giving. I know it is talkin' about giving financially and that is needed for so many local Christian churches these days. God is very practical. 

But God by His Spirit can also speak to our hearts if we let Him and He can give us wisdom for all kinds of different giving. He can show us step by step how to pull off what seems very impossible ..and He can give grace on a moment by moment regular basis. I'm an ordinary dude, but He's spoken to my heart before.. to give all of me to Him.. to give when it costs a lot and when it's not even convenient. But it's instead a big sacrifice for me. But listen.. you know that Jesus has of course sacrificed far more than me or you. I admit I haven't always obeyed Him, but I sure want to now. I believe that we are living in the last days when it's so crucial to obey God's Word. 

I so want to love Jesus more than I did yesterday.. love Him extravagantly, just like that poor widow in the Bible did when she didn't even have much at all to offer to God financially. How beautiful that she had a heart that was willing to obey Him at that time, yes a mind willing to sacrifice to Him.

Remember God's promise to us: Just be ready and see "if I will not open for you the windows of heaven and pour out for you a blessing until it overflows. Then I will rebuke the devourer for you.."  

Sometimes not giving to someone is obedience as well. Thinking of a certain drug abuser. They love to lie and get you feeling guilty (with false guilt) in order to manipulate your mercy and use your loan or gift to go sin more. Sure, watch Cops. All kinds of addicts seek to decieve and try to work-us Christians for their own wicked purposes. Be wise as a serpent and gentle as a dove. I say.. always let the Spirit lead you regarding the giving or not giving of anything, even when your bank account seems so empty to you. 

Don't even let the weird scam-tactics or pressure from money-grubbing televangelists (I mean the false teachers) presumptuously lead you to give with your credit card etc. That also would be sin. Jesus is your Lord who cares about you, not them. 

Study and remember how God used Corrie Ten Boom. She kept ministering and serving the Lord with joy inside that lice-ridden Ravensbrück Nazi concentration camp. Listen, these ideas and gentle warnings didn't originate with me, no no, but you and I can still be involved in sharing as Corrie did.. yes, in this kinda Spirit-led giving or wise non-giving even while we're perhaps still feeling pretty needy. And I pray that God will indeed bless and specifically meet your needs real soon, so you too can continue on with JOY! The Bible says... 

"Sitting across from the offering box, he (Jesus) was observing how the crowd tossed money in for the collection. Many of the rich were making large contributions. One poor widow came up and put in two small coins—a measly two cents. Jesus called his disciples over and said, 'The truth is that this poor widow gave more to the collection than all the others put together. All the others gave what they’ll never miss; she gave extravagantly what she couldn’t afford—she gave her all.'" Mark 12:41-44 msg

Here's more fodder for prayerful meditation and application:
*Deuteronomy 16:17 Every man shall give as he is able, according to the blessing of the LORD your God which he has given you.
*Deuteronomy 15:10 You shall surely give him, and your heart shall not be grieved when you give to him: because that for this thing the LORD your God shall bless you in all your works, and in all that you put your hand to.
*1 Chronicles 29:9 Then the people rejoiced, for that they offered willingly, because with perfect heart they offered willingly to the LORD: and David the king also rejoiced with great joy.
*Proverbs 3:27 Withhold not good from them to whom it is due, when it is in the power of your hand to do it.
*Proverbs 28:27 He that gives to the poor shall not lack: but he that hides his eyes shall have many a curse.
*Proverbs 21:26 He covets greedily all the day long: but the righteous gives and spares not.
*Malachi 3:7 Even from the days of your fathers you are gone away from my ordinances, and have not kept them. Return to me, and I will return to you, said the LORD of hosts. But you said, Wherein shall we return?
*Malachi 3:10 Bring you all the tithes into the storehouse, that there may be meat in my house, and prove me now herewith, said the LORD of hosts, if I will not open you the windows of heaven, and pour you out a blessing, that there shall not be room enough to receive it.
*Matthew 6:1 Take heed that you do not your alms before men, to be seen of them: otherwise you have no reward of your Father which is in heaven.
*Luke 3:11 He answers and said to them, He that has two coats, let him impart to him that has none; and he that has meat, let him do likewise.
*Luke 6:30 Give to every man that asks of you; and of him that takes away your goods ask them not again.
*John 3:16 For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.
*Acts 20:35 I have showed you all things, how that so laboring you ought to support the weak, and to remember the words of the Lord Jesus, how he said, It is more blessed to give than to receive.
*2 Corinthians 9:6 But this I say, He which sows sparingly shall reap also sparingly; and he which sows bountifully shall reap also bountifully.
*2 Corinthians 9:10 Now he that ministers seed to the sower both minister bread for your food, and multiply your seed sown, and increase the fruits of your righteousness..

Wednesday, May 20, 2015

Tell it unexcitin' if that’s how it was. Let it be unembellished. Your story can make an impact as it is!

When some Christians share their testimony, when they go to explaining their personal story if ya will of how they came into a right relationship with God through faith in Christ.. they kinda seem to be relishing their old sins ..that were indeed fun for awhile I'm sure.. and relishing their old worldly exploits that you know other worldly people (hearers) would of course applaud cuz the flesh loves this, and sins that actually did some damage to some lives that Jesus died to save. Surely you've heard stories like this told? Sometimes with over the years.. these embellished stories can change even and get more embellished - don't do it. It's pretty weird to hear em, especially when it really doesn't have to be that way, believer. Let's be real. 

Why keep using the same four tools only?:  Boycott and protest.. or register and vote (and you know all really should learn and go vote smart). But here are two better tools for believers to use in love: Pray and preach.. yes, tell it tactfully, factually and in a non-pushy-or-preachy-religious-kinda-way. 

"And he (Jesus) did not permit him but said to him, 'Go home to your friends and tell them how much the Lord has done for you, and how he has had mercy on you.'" Mark 5:19 

"And they have conquered him by the blood of the Lamb and by the word of their testimony, for they loved not their lives even unto death." Revelation 12:11 

Tell em how it was before you met Jesus Christ, what you did (you don't have to get so graphic), tell em how you thought and why, tell how you felt, where you went, what you heard, who taught you ..and what they taught, how you processed all that, tell what you said in response, who your buddies were, what they were like, and what the results of your decisions were. Where you influenced by your close buds - sure you were, but explain how that happened. Tell people cuz you've been praying for them and God by His Spirit is sayin' "Go for it now." And also tell them ..because you love them, really care about their future and sincerely want the best for their entire family.. tell what you are like now. Be genuine, let it have a ring of authenticity because it really is spot on target, yup, is completely on the mark. Explain it thoroughly.. I mean the peace in you, the JOY, the agape love you experience, the complete supernatural satisfaction with your vertical love relationship ..even though there is opposition, testings, and trials at times. Sure, be wisely-frank with em; tell it all if they have the time. Give em an easy out if they need to get to their job. But why spend more time on the past than on your life in fellowship with Jesus now cuz you really don't want them going there - to your past moldy and lonely life away from God do you? 

If someone pushes and pressures you towards a weakness, then trust the Lord to turn that perceived weakness into a real strength and glorify Him. Keep tellin' your story as it really is. See Romans 12:21

"Whoever believes in the Son of God has the testimony in himself." 1 John 5:10a

Hey there Buckeroo, don't be known for who you were in this world; you know.. for worldly stories that you twisted n tweaked-out, inaccurately embellished, pretty much glorified, and bragged about. No, don't self-promote or seek to be known, but if you are at all ..then be known for who you sincerely are in Christ. Perhaps you were a pretty good kid years ago and not really a gangsta or criminal. Then go tell your story like it really was and is ..even if you don't feel like it's all that thrilling to hear. 

You recall in the book of Acts hearing the Apostle Paul boldy and enthusiastically telling his own story to commoners and even to rulers who were thinking about killing him. The Lord stood with Paul to strengthen him, and you remember how he became all things to all people in a sense.. in order to earn the right to be heard by them. It was in order to win their hearts over to Jesus. He wasn't merely after "scalps" or numbers per se, but said... 

"Even though I am free of the demands and expectations of everyone, I have voluntarily become a servant to any and all in order to reach a wide range of people: religious, nonreligious, meticulous moralists, loose-living immoralists, the defeated, the demoralized—whoever. I didn't take on their way of life. I kept my bearings in Christ—but I entered their world and tried to experience things from their point of view. I've become just about every sort of servant there is in my attempts to lead those I meet into a God-saved life. I did all this because of the Message. I didn't just want to talk about it; I wanted to be in on it!" 1 Cor. 9:19-23 msg


"But when the Helper comes, whom I will send to you from the Father, the Spirit of truth, who proceeds from the Father, He will bear witness about Me." ~ Jesus, John 15:26 

"And you also will bear witness, because you have been with Me (Jesus) from the beginning." John 15:27 

"And this is the testimony, that God gave us eternal life, and this life is in His Son." 1 John 5:11 

"Give heed to Him and hearken to His voice, do not rebel against Him.." Exod. 23:21a

"For there are three that bear witness in heaven: the Father, the Word, and the Holy Spirit; and these three are one." 1 John 5:7 nkjv

Just be listenin' to and open to the leading of the Holy Spirit. Take heart and give heed to Him. Why? Here's why: He's so "for you" and more for you sharing Christ, God's Word, the Gospel message and your story right.. than even you are, believer. Sure, He's more for people finding lasting spiritual satisfaction in Christ than any human here on earth is. So obey Him. Seek to know God well, and to make Him well known.