Thursday, February 27, 2014

they don't love you like i love you

the first place we read jesus discussing love is concerning loving those who are your enemies in matthew 5:43-48.

love your enemies
pray for those who persecute you

i find it interesting that jesus reminds us of the fact that god sees the unrighteous and

still CHOOSES to cause the sun to rise for them.
still CHOOSES to cause the rain to fall for them.

god does not choose to express his love ONLY those who love him back; god does not only reach out to greet those who are wanting to be in the family. god does reach for those who are not in his family. god clearly illustrates that he CHOOSES to love, even those who don’t choose to love him. you will never find in scripture an exception to this idea. god is always loving those, even if they choose not to love him (we can argue about what is just with love in another post).

it is hard to choose to love those who do not love back. one thing christians can do, when found in a place of fighting or resisting the choice to love, is search the heart for any areas of unforgiveness. at one point, in all our lives, we have been offended at something someone has said or done to us. christ references this in matthew 24:12. lawlessness will increase, wrongs will be committed, and in turn most people’s love will grow cold. a significant barrier to the ability to choose love is a heart that has grown cold and hard due to lawlessness or injustice committed.

before you can choose to love you must choose to forgive

ultimately what gives love its wonderfully divine power is not mutual at all, but rather, unconditional, as our heavenly father has displayed many times over. jesus described this kind of love wondering what good is it, only loving someone who loves you back?!?!

you life will be changed by choosing to love even your enemies and those who wish you harm.

Wednesday, February 19, 2014

a delusional alternative

this is the crisis we are in: god-light streamed into the world, but men and women everywhere ran for the darkness. They went for the darkness because they were not really interested in pleasing god. everyone who makes a practice of doing evil, addicted to denial and illusion, hates god-light, won't come near it, fearing a painful exposure. but anyone working and living in truth and reality welcomes god-light so the work can be seen for the god work it is.
john 3:19-21

due to an overwhelming fear men and women avoid the cleansing nature of the light of god. a practitioner of evil is addicted to denial and illusion; a fantasy world, recreation, a perversion of an order god had originally intended.

the darkness has an appeal for all of us in our nature, and especially those of us who desire to practice denial and illusion. even in the darkness there can be a pretend nature that portrays a way out that doesn't involve the light of the world, jesus christ. a sort of delusional alternative to what god's word says. scripture says, however, those who embrace a life through jesus, intentionally trusting and accepting him will come to not only know the god-light but love it, appreciate it and the exposure it produces.

a practitioner of evil hates the light because it exposes them for who they are. forging then, a different path becomes more acceptable and seemingly far easier than living in truth and reality so that god can receive the glory of the exposure. darkness is deceptive because we are fooled in believing we can do what we want when we want to. those who avoid and distrust the son remain in the dark and will not see life. their experiences of the true nature of god will be shrouded with darkness, unable to see god's goodness, unless intentionally denounced. this darkness will make one angry and bitter.

welcoming and embracing jesus and all that he did for us on that cross will relieve us of a performance we are not going to be able to handle our whole life.

Thursday, February 13, 2014

the porn crusader

"guys watch too much porn...those girls don't exist. they are not real girls." -miley cyrus 
(describing her break up with ex-boyfriend liam hemsworth) 

porn is a fantasy, an illusion of that which is desirable in the flesh. here me, it truly is a captivating picture and it powerfully paints a perception of a particular desire. the aim and hope for those that are trapped in its grip is that it can and will be a reality. the only problem is this perception that is painted will never attain to reality. very similar to the concept of the bad guy being victorious. it will never be a popular notion to praise the bad guy over the good guy; that will never be popular. this is because there is something sacred about good guys vs bad guys. the fantasy which is depicted in pornography is the fractured illusion and the fallen path that is hoped to lead towards a door of connection and intimacy. this is a dangerous ground to walk.

when a man/woman engage their heart/mind inside this fantastical illusion they undermine the form and reality of what the encounter is truly meant to be. the effects are not limited to non-christians alone, believers too share in the distorted download of intimacy with a partner. since porn is fantasy it will never be able to transfer into reality, no matter how many elements you bring into the bedroom for "fun." it will never be normal, it will always be fantastical.

when we indoctrinate our minds with enough fantasy, we soon will not be able to distinguish between fantasy and reality. therefore, like a drug, we desire a high, a fix, and no previous hit can gratify; so the dosage has to be intensified. our minds and body do not find the relief from the same amount of dosage. this is one way you can see how fantasy has taken over need a higher dosage to satisfy the urge/craving. 

we do great harm to true intimacy by placing our partner in a role they were not made to act or participate in. will ferrill would make a terrible james bond, no? that is the what we do when we fill our minds with pornography. you then are unable to make a clear decision on what reality (intimacy) really is. who can really play batman...clooney, kilmer, bale, or keaton? which one really is the caped crusader. sadly, as we witness across the scope of humanity, there WILL be a replacement. deeper and deeper we go our partner will be replaced by fantasy and then, likely, physically replaced in our fanatical reality.

do not rob reality by feeding fantasy. my wife would not fail to meet my expectations if i wouldn't place fantastical expectations on her to begin with. no matter how prevalent the porn industry becomes or how normal it appears, it will NEVER be reality and therefore always fail to meet my deepest need of intimacy. 

Wednesday, February 5, 2014

meetings are the best

i am not going to lie, i have an appreciation for meetings. i want to try and explain this secret love i have for meetings the best i can. i have a few friends who have been very vocal in sharing their disdain for meetings and this is not any kind of attack on them, or to try and persuade them to re-think meetings.

1. challenge
typically, in the meetings i attend, there are many things discussed and if all goes well at the end of the meeting there are things that are assigned for me to do. this presents a great challenge to be proactive (even if i am not excited about doing the particular assignment). i love the feeling of a good challenge, especially if it is attainable.

2. accountability
i love the book of proverbs. in the many years i have spent reading it over and over i have grown to appreciate the message of discipline and submission. meetings present for me the arena of growth and opportunity for measuring my attitude. in meetings i gain a sense of accountability and i think this is necessary for anything to function, people holding each other accountable to those things that need to get done. no one wants to be the one lagging behind, am i right?

3. unity
meetings bring unity to the big picture of the organization/business/operation. everyone gets an opportunity to hear and listen to what the other is doing or not doing. this provides a sense of achievement and accomplishment (or if you are not getting things done the healthy kind of guilt). moving forward, getting things done, progress, isn't that a good idea for the world?

4. communication
i don't need to expound on this much. this word alone goes along way. don't confuse communication with talking a lot. i thinking talking a lot is what people HATE about meetings. however, much is accomplished and clarity is guaranteed with communication. even bad-news communicated is better than no communication at all. if no one communicates everyone will be left to assume, and you know what assuming leads to, right?...assumptions. or as it is put another way, it makes an ass out of u and me.

i am sure there are plenty of other smaller points to be made, but i wanted to throw out reasons why i like meetings, in general.

have a good day.