I took my first step as a believer of Jesus 34 years ago, and as some of you know, I’ve been down some hellish roads. I believe I thought the life of a believer was meant to be like some ‘self-help’ webinar where you admit some things you’re not doing right, get on with it and all goes well. Hmmm, not quite; life has shown me that there is much deception, distraction, distortion, devastation, dysfunction, distrust, disillusionment, despair, depression and demand everywhere you look, and I have fallen prey to all of those once too often. (OMGosh, where did all those ‘d’ words just spring from???)
When I hear people today question why God allowed their loved one to die or get cancer or be raped, I feel sad on two counts. The first is the traumatic tragedy and the complex details before, during and after that occurred; and the second that it is not God who wants such things to happen to any of us. Yet somehow, we conveniently blame Him when things go so wrong, especially those who say they don’t believe in Him (I find that ironic). I am no exception to the blame game, but I’m so very glad that I was able to cut that anchor loose.
Each time, Jesus had been trying to show me that He is bigger than all of my heartaches and disappointments and that He has very broad shoulders; he had to, to carry that cross! What I love about Jesus is that whilst we turn our anger towards Him, He continues to turn His love towards us. He showed me time and again the depths of His love, especially at times when I couldn’t see or feel it. Hindsight is a wonderful thing that helped me gain some much-needed perspective, after I managed to de-fizz my shaken soda bottle of heated emotions. I began to let Him whisper His truths in my ear, but not too much; because who would I be without all of those D words??? After all, I’ve experienced every single one of them on more than one occasion, and they were familiar and strangely comfortable!
Stillness has a way of getting us to listen; to nature, to ourselves, to others and hopefully to God. So today, with no pressing engagements, I decided to go a little deeper again. Watching some doco-movies, I saw God at work in other people’s lives. I felt excited at what this team of people were doing and how they fearlessly obeyed the word God had whispered to them; to go to specific places around the world and tell the people (sometimes individuals and sometimes crowds of people), about how much He loved them.
He is alive
In Brazil, prostitutes were being shown what it was like to be loved as a person rather than lusted for, in Mecca, Muslims were prayed for, in Africa the eyes of an elderly woman were opened and her feet healed so she could actually dance. In India, they prayed for favour so they could get inside the holiest of holies of the Shiva temple, the high priest himself invited them in and asked them to sing songs of freedom on the steps by the river; in Monaco, the owner of Stars N Bars was prayed for healing and on and on and on. If I just heard about this stuff like you’re reading this blog, I probably wouldn’t believe it either, therefore I don’t expect you to believe me so, here are some links I found, please take a look and invest in yourself a little more: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3Fju0OKHeY0 https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tLKo7-WTFN4
Why I am I telling you this now? Because these docos speak of a God who says that He is the God of gods, King of kings and Lord of lords, in fact. A God who is alive, not a religion but a God who wants to connect with us personally. He promised to never leave us nor forsake us – that is the person of the Holy Spirit (Ghost).
Some of you may be thinking “yeah well, God didn’t come through for me when my ……….. died!” or “where was He when ………….. happened?” or “watching church goers today is enough to turn anyone away from God!” Well, my friend, I’ve been there too and I’m glad to bear witness that God is good and always has been and always is and always will be. But if we keep looking at life with the negative ‘D’ eyes, we ain’t never gonna see anything good! https://youtu.be/-GK8dBRPd7E (a great song about this).
If we look at the imperfections of people (ALL of us), then we will continue to live in fear and doubt. But when we look to the Heavens or listen to the ancient texts, to hear what God would say, we will be amazed. God showed us His love already through Jesus dying a torturous death caused by people riddled with fear, and then by rising alive from His grave. He offers that love to us now, but He wants to make it personal to YOU; He can’t do that without YOUR invitation. Some of you want it, but are scared; some of you want it, but don’t believe you are worthy to be loved; some of you want it, but are too worried about what others will think of you if you accept it, and still others want it, but have been deceived into thinking that God is a lie. Then there is the group who are worried about finding out more because it would mean some level of responsibility – what do we do with the information we obtain? What if God wants me to go to Africa or someplace I don’t want to go? I wasted precious years worrying about being sent to Africa or some other such place I dreaded going to.
What if God wants you to stay where you are and just learn to live loved for now? Have you even considered what that could mean? That’s what God asked of me; to learn to live loved. Is it easy? No! Is it messy at times? Yes! I have a way of making things complicated when they don’t need to be and that messed my head up for years. But here’s the thing – God is bigger than any mess you or I could possibly create or be a part of! Jesus is the one who contends for us and makes the miracle way, if we would just believe Him when He said, “I AM the way, the truth and the life…”
“Don’t tell me what to do!” was my catch-cry for many years. Afraid of becoming a door mat, I built walls of rock around myself so no one could hurt me again – I had to be strong. God is a perfect Heavenly Father and He showed me that if I would just choose to live life the way He intended in the first place, trusting Him to guide me and love me along the way, then I would experience life more abundantly. I had been living my life hiding in shadows, afraid of what others may think of me (my entire school life was like that); bold at times and often bold about the wrong things, which would result in more strife.
Today, I choose to emerge out of the shadows and live my life bold about what really matters, and at this point in life when so many people are confused, frightened, lonely and lost. When we walk out of the shadows, we need to fix our eyes on the right place so we’re not lured back by all those ‘D’ words and take unnecessary trips around the same mountains. Sure of who I am, I want to remind people that there is another way, a better way. It is a great day for new beginnings; hey, it’s also Spring – new life is all around – let it come to you also…
Jesus came to give us life in abundance; He came to set the captives free – friends, that is you and me! We are captive to so many strongholds and addictions, but Jesus loves us even while we are sinners. We need to understand it is the sin God hates, not the sinner. It does not matter what your sexual preferences or persuasions are, your addiction, or your past history of relational dysfunctions, we will always be imperfect because that’s how life is. We don’t, however, have to live under the weight of sin anymore and because of Jesus, we can live loved.
Would you like to live life free of the strongholds of fear, rejection, resentment, addictions, and all of those ‘D’ words above? You can. Invite Jesus to forgive you and to heal those parts of you that have been hurt so bad, those parts that you’ve locked up behind walls of stone, and let His light warm you and heal you from the inside-out. DELIVER, DIRECT and DELIGHT are just a few of the more helpful D words that Jesus will do for you if you invite Him to Do so. When you Dare to Decide you want change, you will Discover how Diverse and Determined Jesus is and re-Define your life and begin to Dream again and Declare how you want to re-Design your life. You can Develop Discipline and Discernment and live life Differently.
This is one of my favourite songs because it speaks of freedom and of truth and it’s fun. God is fun and fun loving as well as serious (there’s a time and a place for everything). He’s serious about sin and His love for each of us and that He is the only way to Heaven, take a listen and decide for yourself. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_SFIeNK5GrI
We can’t help ourselves with eternity, we need Jesus AND we don’t have to wait for eternity to encounter Him. He wants to be invited in now, to Do life with you and me; all we have to do is open the door and let Him lead us and heal any hurt or pain. He is a gentleman and won’t force anything on us – trust Him, you’ll see. Come out of the shadows, into the light – experience living life loved…
If you would like to learn more about how to live in the abundance Christ offers you,
please contact me: M – 0484 787 300 E: firstname.lastname@example.org