Empowered & Engaged

War Zones

Typically, when we Americans think of war zones, we think of far off lands, physical violence, terrorists and/or people groups we often don’t understand.  Since we are not personally affected, physically engaged, or even daily witnesses through news outlets, we tend to become apathetic and/or desensitized to the plight of others.  Most people make the false assumption, based on historical events, that we have not had a war on US soil since the Civil War. But what if I told you we ARE in a war?  Every day. Right here. Right now. It is being waged all around us.  In our fast-paced, First World lives we either forget this and don’t engage, or worse, are oblivious to the battles and war going on.  And these battles affect us personally, even though we can’t physically see them!   Recently, the Lord gave me a vision of a battlefield that was littered

Knowledge, Understanding, and Wisdom

During worship recently, the Lord spoke three words to me and “downloaded” the understanding of those words, and how they are tied together. The three words were: Knowledge, Understanding and Appropriation. What He showed me was that these are three levels, if you will, of Bible reading/knowledge. The first is simply knowledge. Anyone can read the Bible and obtain knowledge about the people, the customs, the stories, the history, etc. In fact, many worldly scholars have read the Bible without any sort of heart change because they didn’t have understanding. 1 Corinthians 2:14 tells us, “But the natural man does not accept the things of the Spirit of God, for they are foolishness to him; and he cannot understand them, because they are spiritually appraised.” The natural man has only head knowledge of the Bible. The second is understanding. When we become children of

Fruit Check

….He straightened up and said to them (scribes and Pharisees) “He who is without sin among you, let him be the first to throw a stone at her”. ~ John 8:7 In the news recently, there have been several stories of celebrities who are finding faith and publicly announcing their change of heart.  Just to name a few:  Justin Beiber, Selena Gomez, Kanye West, and most recently Demi Levato was baptized in the Jordan River.  People of all walks of life, celebrities included, coming to Christ and having newfound faith is not new and has been happening for centuries.  In our day and age, it becomes sensationalized due to the baseness of Hollywood and the music industry, so that many people are shocked by these conversions.  However, what I find MORE shocking is the attitude of professing Christians in response to them. What I have found in the comment

State of the Union

While I don’t wish to delve too much into politics at this time, the battle over the State of the Union address has caused me to see some parallels between the state of our Country (USA) and the state of the American church.  The State of the Union Address (sometimes abbreviated to SOTU) is an annual message delivered by the President of the United States, to a joint session of the United States Congress at the beginning of each calendar year in office. The message typically includes a budget message and an economic report of the nation, and also allows the President to propose a legislative agenda and national priorities. (Wikipedia)  The speech is also for the American public, to inform us what type of changes are being made in the future and to review changes already made. If congress does not show any effort

Accepted or Commissioned?

The moment we repent, and accept Christ as our Lord and Savior, our spirits become justified. They are fully redeemed in the eyes of God.  There is no further judgement of the spirit due to Christ’s atonement on the cross. In fact, we are told in Ephesians 2 that Christians are seated with Christ in heavenly places!  That means right now.  This is an awesome thing for which we should be eternally grateful. However, far too many Christians think that the justification of their spirit is enough…singing about being redeemed and dreaming about heaven and the rooms prepared for them in the mansions of heaven.  But we need to remember that just as God is a 3 part being, so are we who are created in His image.  Our spirit is justified and redeemed, but we still have 2 other parts of our being…body and soul.   Our bodies are the decaying shell

Legalism vs. Liberalism

Not too many years ago preachers preached about sin and judgement, fire and brimstone, and portrayed God as angry and demanding.  Conversely, these days we have preachers who have swung the pendulum too far the other direction into love, love, love and grace, grace, grace.   One end of the spectrum is legalism and the other end is liberalism.  Neither are biblical.  The truth is in the middle of these two extremes and we better get ahold of it quickly! Jesus rebuked the Pharisees, during his days on earth, for their pious attitudes and their need to control people with legalism.  He also warned us that he did not come to abolish the law, but to fulfill it (Matt. 5:17-20).  Abolishing the law swings us into a form of liberalism, and abuse of grace, that Paul emphatically warns against in Romans 6:1-2.    God is both a God of judgement and a God

Spiritual Malnutrition

There is an alarming trend occurring, according to a 2017 Barna poll, indicating a decline in not only Bible reading, but also in believing it to be either the literal or inspired word of God.  At the time of the poll, only 20% of people polled believed the Bible to be the literal or inspired word of God and read, used, listened to the Bible 4 times a week or more.  The percentage of pollsters who believe the same, but engaged with the Bible less than 4 times a week was a mere 38%.  If we were looking at a cross-section of the general American public, this may not seem so bad…may even look promising.  However, Barna Group’s demographic is Christians and Christian churches.  So, why are so few Christians reading their Bibles?  And what exactly are the implications of this, individually, corporately and culturally? In

Gates & Walls of Our Hearts

We are instructed in Proverbs 4:23 to guard our hearts with all diligence because ALL the issues of life flow from it.  This has always been a bit of tricky passage for me to understand how exactly we execute that.  Until today. I was discussing with someone very close to me, all the ways that we individually, and corporately as the body of Christ, have compromised in seemingly small, innocuous ways.  The church has become far, far too entrenched in the culture of the world.  The church was supposed to CHANGE the culture, not blend in with it.  When the Jews were captive in Babylon, many adapted to the culture.  When they were FREE to go, many, many chose to stay because they became enamored with the culture….the very one that captured them to begin with!  They came into alignment with the very darkness

View More