Friday, September 13, 2013

Rise Up..

Before I actually post this for the world to see, these are things that God is teaching me..has been teaching me..this is more for me..than anyone else.  My pray is that my heart is seen here..that love could be read through these words..that God would protect anyone who reads this, from anything that is not of Him in this post and that He would show me if there is, so that I can change it..that greatness could be brought back to the Kingdom of God for His glory.  That mighty warriors of all peoples would rise up, making our Father, Savior, and Comforter famous.  That the body of Christ would no longer be denominations, but a body of believers brought together by the common thread of Jesus' sacrifice for us.  

Rise up..
Rise up..
Rise up..
Rise up oh, men of God.
This keeps running through my brain in a never-ending loop...
Rise up..

Malachi 4:6
"And He will turn the hearts of fathers to their children and the hearts of children to their fathers, lest I come and strike the land with a decree of utter destruction." (ESV)

"He will restore the hearts of the fathers to their children and the hearts of the children to their fathers, so that I will not come and smite the land with a curse." (NASB)

I love that, "He will turn the hearts;" "He will RESTORE the hearts."
That sons and daughters could come together under the umbrella of their fathers' authority in Christ!  That honor and respect would be extended to even the most undeserving.  That grace would be given from the children to their fathers; that that same God-given grace would begin to change wounded daddy hearts, into courageous Warrior-Father hearts. 

 That the fathers would rise up.  A new courageous generation.  One that denies self; acting as Christ who loved the Church, willing to die for the ones He loved.  That there would be such a turning of hearts that the heart of Christ would be so evident in every area of our lives.  Imperfect people, made perfect through the Spirit of the Living God, filled with His love and grace. 
 
Fathers, husbands, sons, I implore you.  Look at your wives, daughters, sisters.  Many are weary, many are struggling, many are losing the battle.  Many have fallen into temptation.  Some may not give in, but how their hearts ache, secret sins deep inside, piercing the very depths of who they are. Searching for things that only through Jesus can be found.  Many feel unheard, unloved, uncared for.  So they run, run far from the Father, Creator of All.  Fathers, reach out to your daughters; they need you.  They need to see Jesus flowing through you.  Husbands, your wives, weeping deep inside; care for their hearts.  
 
Ephesians 5:22-33 (ESV)
"Wives, submit to your own husbands, as to the Lord. For the husband is the head of the wife even as Christ is the head of the church, his body, and is himself its Savior. Now as the church submits to Christ, so also wives should submit in everything to their husbands.  Husbands, love your wives, as Christ loved the church and gave himself up for her, that he might sanctify her, having cleansed her by the washing of water with the word, so that he might present the church to himself in splendor, without spot or wrinkle or any such thing, that she might be holy and without blemish.  In the same way husbands should love their wives as their own bodies. He who loves his wife loves himself. For no one ever hated his own flesh, but nourishes and cherishes it, just as Christ does the church, because we are members of his body. “Therefore a man shall leave his father and mother and hold fast to his wife, and the two shall become one flesh.” This mystery is profound, and I am saying that it refers to Christ and the church. However, let each one of you love his wife as himself, and let the wife see that she respects her husband."

Wives, mothers, even the daughters...pain may come.  But, keep going.  Know your Savior.  Acknowledge your sins, repent of even the secret sins.  Mourn. Weep.  But know His heart.  Glorify His name.  Come under His authority.  Show gracious respect.  Honor even when it hurts.  Take responsibility for your life.  

Husbands, love your wives, as Christ loved the church.  

Christ loves the Church, and even those who refuse Him, with a passionate love.  He gave everything so EVERYONE on this earth who ever lived could have a chance to know His saving grace.

Yet, we look with cold eyes on a daughter who dresses immodestly, because Satan, the deceiver, told her that was the way to earn love.  She knows right from wrong; yet how are we reaching out in Jesus-love to show her a different way?
We point fingers at the woman who walks the street, selling herself short, because Satan, the father of lies, told her she wasn't worth anything.  She knows deep inside that she is far from obedient; yet we push her aside as just another sinner we don't want to be associated with.
We turn granite faces and shoulders away from the man who meets those women, his heart aching for affirmation, because Satan, told him he wasn't good enough.  He knows, aching, deep inside his heart, that he is sinning; show him love, show him Jesus, be his friend.
We speak harshly about the man who drinks his problems away.  He wishes for a better way, he knows there is one.  Reach out.  Don't turn away from him.
We refuse entrance to our churches because we shouldn't have tattoos or piercings or anything that would make the perfect facade of our churches to crumble.

Where has the love for God gone?  My own heart drowns for want of His Living Water.  My own eyes are seeing the cold depravity of my own heart.  We all have desperate voids.  Some fill them with idols of money, self, relationships.
Where did the idols of money, self, control, even in some ways ministry come from?
If we all have these idols, these voids; why then, are we pointing fingers?
 Matthew 7:5
"Or how can you say to your brother, 'Let me take the speck out of your eye,' and behold, the log is in your own eye?  "You hypocrite, first take the log out of your own eye, and then you will see clearly to take the speck out of your brother's eye."

Why are we not as the Body of Christ reaching out?  Not only to the broken on the streets, but to all our broken pieces that we hold tightly, hoping no one sees.  We are all broken.  Every last one of us.  I am ashamed to admit, that even through the journey I have been on, I still fight the lie that if I'm real people will judge me.  So what if they do.  I fear that no longer will they speak to me, or acknowledge me.  Maybe they won't.  Maybe they'll push me aside...But as the journey continues, you start to know the Father's heart..
Romans 8:35-39
 "Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? Shall tribulation, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or danger, or sword?  As it is written, 'For your sake we are being killed all the day long;
we are regarded as sheep to be slaughtered. 
No, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him who loved us. For I am sure that neither death nor life, nor angels nor rulers, nor things present nor things to come, nor powers, nor height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus our Lord."


What amazing words...how then...if we are to know the love of Christ through relationship..how then, if we have such sweet communion with our Savior..how then, can we push away this lost and dying world at our doorsteps?  How can we choose not to be love to those around us?

 

Thursday, September 5, 2013

Another New Chapter

Those final lasts. 
That last moment of driving crazy, watching the mountains pass me by.
That last moment of sharing pastry-filled talks.
That last moment of aching tear-streaming faces, & heart-crying memories.
That last load of laundry....
Only to have to send one more load through, because of sending my chapstick through, one last time.
Those final memories of companions you've had for the last long moments of your life.
Those final aching moments before turning the page.
That moment when you say, "I'll see you later."
That moment.
Thank God, it's only a moment.
There will be more......