Tuesday, November 06, 2012

spoken word - Grace

Have I proven myself to believe in you cuz I have not acted on your word or produced any fruit according to the truth. But instead I'm steady tryna take your place, steal your throne and push you away, not realizing I’m here bcuz of your grace, when I know my sins and I should be on my face, and if you indicted me surely I would lose this case..but Lord I’m blind and I can’t see the way, they say you real and I believe what they say but why is it so hard to act like it each day?

You give me breath, you move my feet, I hear, I taste I touch I see…still it seems not enough to me. I wanna be God of my life, but how can I when I don’t do what’s right? I listen to others who go against you but deep inside we all know the truth. That Jesus Christ is coming soon and still we asking for more proof.

Teach me to fear you, teach me to hear you, draw my heart so I can come near, sometimes I’m scared cuz I know I’m wrong, sometime I’m weak when I want to be strong, Lord hear my cry, Lord wipe my eyes, so you can take away this pain inside. A broken heart is what I carry, make me new so this old man can be buried. Jesus Christ you gave us life, we squander it away as if you weren’t the perfect sacrifice. When I mess up I don’t think twice but still you say you love me as your wife.

I don’t understand this God I cant see, I don’t understand who you called me to be, I don’t understand how you love me for me, when I spit in your face and you still come get me….but I believe and I know its by faith that you are who you say and I know its by faith you hear when I pray and I know its by faith that you will change my ways, and I know its by faith that I make it each day, I know its by faith I receive your good grace and I know its by faith your fully God and fully man, and I know its by faith I’ll fulfill your commands and I know its by faith you save through your plan even when in our hearts against you we stand.

Dethrone us little people, show us your power, let us see ourselves for what we truly are this very hour. We are but dust and dirt flesh and blood, but spirit and soul can only live with you by your blood. You made all creation and called it good. We see what’s going on still we turn a deaf ear, Father please give us ears to hear..no matter our age, our race or our sex, help us to truly realize what is to come next, cuz you wont leave us Fatherless like the many others did…you protect your family and love your kids, even when that man didn’t take care of his.cuz word on the streets is Jesus handles His biz, the problem is…we fail at every turn, and when we crash and burn your willing to pick us up and help us learn. These kids are looking for something that’s real, not just what they see or what they feel but something supernatural and so King Jesus you will be hailed whether we bow now or bow later…its evident you destroy your haters even still you give us a chance while we waiver…Lord help us I think we realize now by your grace we do need a Savior!

- by Nicolette Law 

Nicolette has requested that this spoken word not be duplicated for any purpose of financial gain, but that it be made available freely to bless and edify.

the "weaker brother" fallacy

...some people are "professional weaker brothers." Those folks are not weaker brothers at all; they are hardcore legalists who play the role of weaker brothers. 

Almost without exception, whenever I have heard the "weaker brother" argument made, it has come from a long-time believer, not a new convert, who desires to create a "Christian nanny state" through the law.

for more on this, check out Grace Unshackled: Risky Business

Thursday, September 20, 2012

the blame game

Do you ever come across a sign on the road that really catches your attention? I had one of those moments last night on the way home. Here's what the sign said:

Don't Fix the Blame, Fix the Problem

Fantastic advice. So many times we look for someone to blame rather than addressing the issue(s). 'Nuff said...

cheers!

Monday, July 30, 2012

for uptight Christians...

"There are some who have no understanding to hear the truth of liberty and insist upon their goodness as means for salvation. These people you must resist, do the very opposite, and offend them boldly lest by their impious views they drag many with them into error. For the sake of liberty of the faith do other things which they regarded as the greatest of sins… Use your freedom constantly and consistently in the sight of and despite the tyrants and stubborn so that they may learn that they are impious, that their laws and works are of no avail for righteousness, and that they had no right to set them up."

 - Martin Luther - essay The Freedom of a Christian
don't ya just love him?

Friday, July 13, 2012

10 books legalists don’t want you to read

legalism:
- a system in which a person seeks to gain God’s acceptance or blessings by what he does.
- any approach to Christian living that focuses on keeping rules as a means of experiencing victory or growing spiritually.
McVey, Steve (2005-05-01). Grace Walk (p. 80). Harvest House Publishers. Kindle Edition.  

10 books legalists don’t want you to read:
  1. Grace Walk (Steve McVey) 
  2. God Without Religion (Andrew Farley) 
  3. The Naked Gospel (Andrew Farley) 
  4. A Scandalous Freedom (Steve Brown) 
  5. The Pressure’s Off (Larry Crabb) 
  6. 52 Lies Heard in Church Every Sunday (Steve McVey) 
  7. The Search for Significance (Robert McGee) 
  8. 12 Steps for the Recovering Pharisee (John Fischer) 
  9. The Subtle Power of Spiritual Abuse (Johnson & VanVonderen) 
  10. Three Free Sins (Steve Brown) 
Honorable Mention:
Boundaries (Cloud & Townsend)

Grace Rules (Steve McVey)

More Jesus | Less Religion (Arterburn & Felton)

Toxic Faith (Arterburn & Felton)

Monday, June 25, 2012

prayer for freedom in worship

Praise the Lord! Praise God in his sanctuary;
     praise him in his mighty heavens! 
Praise him for his mighty deeds;
     praise him according to his excellent greatness! 
Praise him with trumpet sound; 
     praise him with lute and harp! 
Praise him with tambourine and dance; 
     praise him with strings and pipe! 
Praise him with sounding cymbals; 
     praise him with loud clashing cymbals! 
Let everything that has breath praise the Lord! Praise the Lord!
(Ps. 150)

Most gracious Father, it occurs to me as I meditate on this psalm that I need a much bigger heart for the purposes of your praise. I need the gospel to expand my palate, multiply my taste buds, and increase my capacity to enjoy the rich diversity of worship that is offered by your pan-cultural beloved people.

My tendency is to treat this psalm, like many parts of your Word, as though it were a buffet line from which I pick and choose the items that I personally enjoy. What’s worse, I find ways to marginalize or eliminate expressions that don’t fit within my bandwidth of beauty. I love harps and lyres and strings and flutes, but trumpets make me cringe as I wait for a sour note, tambourines remind me of bad theology, clashing and resounding cymbals are simply too loud and nonmelodic for me, and there’s no way I’m going to dance. Father, all of this I confess as sin. My heart is just too small, too turned in on me.

Oh, how I long for the day when the work of Jesus will be complete in my heart, when I will no longer be the measure of anything and I will no longer offer a measured response to your glory and grace. I long for the day when I will find great joy in celebrating your surpassing greatness with the whole family of God, with all of restored creation, with every single breath, instrument, sound, molecule, and nanoparticle.

Your greatest praiseworthy act of power was in sending, offering, and raising Jesus from the dead for us—for me. May the limits of my worship and praise be determined only by the riches and reach of the gospel. I pray in Jesus’ magnificent and merciful name. Amen.


quoted from:
 

Friday, April 27, 2012

religion...

click comic strip to view

I laughed out loud, did you?

need another laugh? visit  http://searchingforgrace.com/

Wednesday, March 28, 2012

what!?!?! not the hokey pokey?

...it's not about the hokey pokey? What!?!? Well, according to Natural Church Development (NCD),

1. It's not about quantity - it's about quality
2. It's not about programs - it's about principles
3. It's not about numbers - it's about health

I must agree! (And, "natural" church development, instead of a forced, man-made method or program? Now there's an idea!)

Wednesday, February 29, 2012

human being (repost)

I am a human being, not a human doing. My worth lies in who I am, not what I can do or how I am seen by others. This is the truth of my existence.
- David G. Benner, The Gift of Being Yourself (p.86)

One of my favorite quotes, and a fun picture to go with it. A good reminder for all the "worker bees" out there.

So, how ya bean?

Monday, February 20, 2012

trapped on the performance treadmill?

The Performance Trap: “I must meet certain standards in order to feel good about myself.”

Consequences: the fear of failure; perfectionism; being driven to succeed; manipulating others to achieve success; withdrawal from healthy risks, anger, resentment, pride, depression and low
motivation.

God’s Answer: Justification (by grace through faith)—just as if I had never sinned. Romans 5:1: “Therefore, since we have been justified through faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ.” Because of justification, I am completely forgiven and fully pleasing to God, I no longer need to fear failure.

Results of God’s Solution: Increasing freedom from the fear of failure; desire to pursue the right things: Christ and His kingdom; greater love for Christ and desire to please Him through loving and serving others.

There are many reasons why we should want to obey God. Here are seven:
  1. Christ’s love motivates us to live for Him. (2 Cor. 5:14)
  2. Sin is destructive and should be avoided. (Gal. 6:7-8)
  3. Our Heavenly Fatherly lovingly disciplines us for wrongdoing. (Heb. 12: 6)
  4. His commands are good: they are an expression of His love and wisdom. (Rom. 12: 2)
  5. We will receive eternal rewards for faithfulness and obedience. (Gal. 6: 10)
  6. Christ knows what’s best and wants what’s best and is worthy of our obedience.
  7. Everything God does is worthy of our love, loyalty, trust and obedience.

do you really need another person's approval?

The Approval Addict: “I must be approved (accepted) by others to feel good about myself.”

Consequences: the fear of rejection; attempting to please others at any cost; overly sensitive to criticism; withdrawing from others to avoid disapproval, being easily manipulated, codependency; control, depression, etc.

God’s Answer: Reconciliation—brought into a right relationship with God. Colossians 1:21-22: “Once you were alienated from God and were enemies in your minds because of your evil behavior. But now he has reconciled you by Christ’s physical body through death to present you holy in his sight, without blemish and free from accusation…” Because of reconciliation, I am totally accepted by God. I no longer have to fear rejection. God is at peace with me.

Results of God’s Solution: Increasing freedom from the fear of rejection; willingness to be open and vulnerable, able to relax around others; willingness to take criticism; desire to please God no matter what others think.

How does God feel about me? 1 Corinthians 13:4-7: Substitute the word “God” for the word “love”. My Heavenly Father is:
(1) Very patient and kind;
(2) not envious, never boastful;
(3) not arrogant;
(4) never rude nor self-seeking;
(5) not quick to take offense;
(6) keeps no score of wrongs;
(7) does not gloat over my sins but is glad when truth prevails;
(8) knows no limit to His endurance, no end to His trust;
(9) always hopeful and patient.

don't play the blame game

The Blame Game: “Those who fail are unworthy of love and deserve to be punished.”

Consequences: The fear of punishment; punishing others; blaming others for personal failure; withdrawal from God and others; driven to avoid failure.

God’s Answer:
Propitiation—God’s holiness and justice is satisfied by Christ’s death in our place. 1 John 4:9-11: "This is how God showed his love among us: He sent his one and only Son into the world that we might live through him. This is love: not that we loved God, but that he loved us and sent his Son as an atoning sacrifice for our sins. Dear friends, since God so loved us, we also ought to love one another.” (cf. Romans 8:1) Because of propitiation, I am deeply loved by God. I no longer have to fear punishment or punish myself or others.

Results of God’s Solution:
Increasing freedom from the fear of punishment; patience and kindness toward others; being quick to apply forgiveness – to gain and maintain a clear conscience; a deep-seated love for Christ.

shame on you? ...shame off of you!

Shame: “I just can’t help it, that’s just the way I am. I cannot change. I am hopeless.”

Consequences: feelings of shame, hopelessness, inferiority; passivity; loss of creativity; isolation; withdrawal from others, resigned to failure; a feeling of helplessness.

God’s Answer: Regeneration—being spiritually reborn by the Word and Spirit of God. John 3:3-6: “In reply Jesus declared, “I tell you the truth, no one can see the kingdom of God unless he is born again. How can a man be born when he is old?” Nicodemus asked. “Surely he cannot enter a second time into his mother’s womb to be born!” Jesus answered, “I tell you the truth, no one can enter the kingdom of God unless he is born of water and the Spirit. Flesh gives birth to flesh, but the Spirit gives birth to spirit.” (cf. Titus 3:5)

Because of regeneration, I am a new creation—complete in Christ. I no longer need to experience the pain of shame. I have a new nature, a new heart, a new occupant on the throne, a new source of identity—who I am in Christ!

Results of God’s Solution:
Christ-centered, self-confidence; joy, courage, peace; a desire to know Christ.

Sunday, January 29, 2012

scandalous

now reading...


fantastic book! understand your true freedom in Christ!