how are you born? who are your parents?
Something my Hebrew Bible professor said in class really stuck with me and has produced so much joy in my heart.
He argued that when God brought the Israelites out of Egypt, His message was not simple human liberation. God is always reconciling to Himself. The wall of the Pharaoh was hindering the capacity of His chosen people to serve Him and Him alone. “You are free, to serve me" was one of the central messages of the Exile.
To me, I see this in the Gospel. I see that the message also includes a similar point in that we are free from the bondage of Sin, which allows us to freely serve God.
I’m still processing all of this, but track with me while I process:
Thinking if I was an Israelite just freed from the bondage of slavery to Pharaoh, I would be jumping up with joy and gladness. But freedom needs a destination. Being free for the sake of being free is pointless - freedom is always bound to something. Freedom’s destination thus invokes obedience. It’s a weird paradox, but it makes sense.
Example: if I am free to do whatever pleases me, my destination is myself. Thus if my destination is myself, I will use that freedom to obey myself.
Yet, in our case, our freedom must be bound to Jesus. I can imagine myself being and Israelite saying, “AHHH IM FREE!!!! ………uhh… now what?”. I think the Israelites had a destination and their freedom allowed them to go for the promised land. But their disobedience hindered them because they re-attached their freedom and thus their obedience to different destinations. Yet, imagine the joy if they obeyed: each day they knew they were one day closer to the promised land.
I believe Jesus is the destination. And Jesus sits in heaven at the right hand of God. Jesus is the hope of heaven. The promise of heaven is hopeless and pointless without the promise of Jesus Himself. Everyday, there is a joy in knowing that obeying the Lord brings heaven closer and closer.
this is so interesting. i think i’ll revisit later and add on.
is one of the craziest things I’ve learned this year.
But man. It is so good.
The Lord is not unjust. He sees. He honors.
Soli Deo Gloria.
when someone or a group of people become important to you, you make room in your schedule for them. you desire to spend time with then and you actually go out of your way to spend time with them. and this spending time… it’s just the means to an end. you don’t just ever do the spending of time simply for the sake of spending time, but the sake of getting closer with them. you fight, in terms of sacrificing time with others or yourself and protecting time for them. you fight for intimacy. true, our world has a certain inclination towards the word intimacy, but in its truest sense, it simply means a close familiarity, a deep closeness.
i think i’m starting to understand what it means to fight for love. that, there is no status quo of love to fight to - only greater increases of love to fight for.
this is all word vomit for saying, i used to hate myself for not reading the Bible and not praying and not doing a, b, c, d. then i used to just get sad for not reading, praying, doing, etc. but now, it just befuddles me. not that I’m taking it lightly or that this is something that’s , but now I kinda get the stupidity of it all.
God loves me.
I love God.
Of Course, I fight to pray.
Of Course, I fight to read.
Of Course, I fight to stay close to Him.
Why are you asking me no-brainers?
Here in freedom of religion land, I’m free to do all of this. But I think so often lately about the persecuted churches and all those thousands who are forced to pray like Hannah. They must fight to pray, read, worship. It’s just how it is.
But what is ubiquitous for them, is anything but for us. We who live in supposed freedom cry over their lack of freedoms, yet aren’t they the ones living in the clarity of the greatest freedom. And further yet, isn’t their freedom our freedom if we all claim we find ourselves in Christ?
They get what we often don’t get here. Hmm. That statement works on so many levels.
Sometimes, it’s just that simple.
1. Someone told me recently that one of my brothers holds me in high regard. That he respects me a lot. I was offended. I asked God why, and He said, just calm down and take it as they hold Me that is inside of you in high regard. There was peace.
2. I love my brother. Love isnt considered complete when both sides love each other. Love is complete even when one side just loves. Jesus still loved me and died for me while I still hated Him. Instead, it is joy that is made complete in love. I pray joy is made complete with him.
3. Theology is a useless and foolish exercise unless its Truth pulls down from my mind, into a conviction of the heart, into a revelation of the Holy Spirit that makes me love Him more through worship. I worship the God of revelation not the God of my imagination.
4. Heidi Baker gets childlike faith. Oh how I desire to be childlike in faith.
5. A life of a Christian is not marked or measured by anything else but the fruit of love.
i’ve always been afraid and confused about community, the local church, and pastor figures in my life. but it’s mainly because it never existed.
yet now, here they are. they’re here and in front of me. all of them. and now i see some what, but i am still confused. just differently confused. clearly confused.
where do you call, Jesus? what do you say, Jesus? where are you, Jesus?
I wonder about this thing we call “inner healing”, especially in terms of hurt from another, still living, still able to communicate with somehow person. I get that God often will heal us through healing prayers… but I suppose I have a hard time keeping that in line with the stories I read and I hear about. Not that that doesnt happen… just that maybe thats not the whole story.
In its own time, in its own way, theres a part of me that says that we hold a responsibility to try for greater healing - greater, meaning one that is experienced outside the lone self or the lone self with Jesus. The third party must be included in there at some point, do they not? I recognize that I must recieve the healing from above, but perhaps we actually recieve more than we ask for. Do we not also recieve more faith along with the healing? More faith that now with a spirit repaired by God, that we can then go forth and put faith in action to start bigger, witnessable healing and reconciliation between two persons?
How quickly I am satisfied with a shallow level of inner healing, when there are always consequences to all actions. Good and bad consequences, but things that beget reponsibility.
He does not heal for the sake of healing. He heals for the sake of glory, a glory that can be witnessed.
These are things I must remember. I pray that I act, even though it hurts. Help me let you to complete your stories in my life. I know You complete what You start.
My will aside. Your story alone. Make me more like You.
“Mad was the last kid I saw and he was asleep. He was 3 months old and they put him in my arms and he stayed asleep and they put him in the bath and he stayed asleep and I thought he was narcoleptic or something. Then he opened his eyes and just stared at me for the longest time and I just stared at him and I started crying and he smiled. And it wasn’t that he smiled that he liked me, it was just that I hadn’t held children in my life and I was always considered so dark and I always had so many things that made me feel like maybe I shouldn’t be somebody’s mom because certainly the world has an opinion of me and I’m not so sure about myself and am I gonna be the best mom? So the fact that this little kid seemed at ease gave me the courage to feel like I could make him happy. And so we became a family right then.” — Angelina Jolie
though You call me, still i fear
though You are faithful, still i distrust
though You speak, still i ignore
though You love, still i hate.
how wretched am I, human.
bound by time, space, language, Earth.
learning to unbelong and belong at the same time.
Child I came, child I become, child I am.
yet what hope I have; just help me believe,
We are family.
Being a vessel for God to use is a truly interesting concept. The vessel must be there, whole, so that water may be poured in, held, an then ultimately, poured out. The vessel is kind of important, but the Person pouring the Water in, the Water itself, and the thing the Water is being poured out to seems to be of more importance. Yet, the vessel is never forgotten. It is vital… just unassuming.
Lately, I’ve been receiving conviction and pictures and words, but while it has a little bit to do with me, it seems to be more meaningful for people around me. Coupled with the fact that God is really taking me on a journey in activating my spiritual gifts, it’s really truly playing out that verse where the Gifts are good for building up the Church.
I feel blessed when I obey, but lately, it’s different. It’s as if glory is escalating itself up to God, and as God receives it, He reflects it in light back to the earth. I feel like a small blade of grass, equal or lesser in height to all other blades of grass around me - yet I breathe in the fullness of that light. It’s incredible. I feel whole.
And yes, I feel positively (+) small, but I don’t feel forgotten. I feel fully seen, fully used, fully loved.
This is a really interesting new season :]