Dangerous words

IMG_1047 You’ve heard of The Prayer of Jabez; maybe listened to a sermon on it; maybe prayed it for yourself. The speaker starts telling you how radical this prayer is and how it can change your life, or that God will bless you immeasurably.

Every Sunday you sit in church listening and singing along with the latest and greatest of praise & worship music written by today’s popular artists. As you listen to these popular teachings, you nod your head, maybe clap your hands, or shout out an AMEN! This little “tickled pink” feeling floods your mind, heart and soul as you raise your hands and hit the floor foaming at the mouth. *humor*

Now that you are grinning ear to ear and thinking fuzzy thoughts, let me slap you and bust your bubble. You are singing dangerous words. You are praying dangerous words. You are unleashing the powers of the deep on your life and soul. There is no going back.

Yes you heard me correctly, but do not despair. There is more!

I would like to pause and share some irony. As I sit here typing this, a very specific song comes to mind that I was planning on sharing. This song literally just popped up on my iHeart Radio that I have blazing in the background. Dangerous words…

You are singing dangerous words. You are praying dangerous words. You are unleashing the powers of the deep on your life and soul. There is no going back.

These words are beautiful, they make my soul so hungry…

Spirit lead me where my trust is without borders
Let me walk upon the waters
Wherever You would call me
Take me deeper than my feet could ever wander
And my faith will be made stronger
In the presence of my Savior

Equally as beautiful, are the words that Jabez prayed to God (1 Chronicles 4:10)…

He was the one who prayed to the God of Israel, “Oh, that you would bless me and expand my territory! Please be with me in all that I do, and keep me from all trouble and pain!” And God granted him his request.

Dangerous words.

Now I can picture you sitting there right now with your arms folded tightly, ready to get all up in arms defensive of my supposed slander of these words and lyrics. Rest easy. All is not as it seems.

These words are dangerous for one reason: every time you say them or sing them, you throw an atomic bomb on the enemies plan for your life. Stop and THINK for a moment what you are saying. Feel the movement of each word on your lips, let them echo in your heart and mind. Do you hear the explosion?

Both the prayer and song I have listed have a parallel theme: you are inviting the Spirit into your life, surrendering control of your mind, will and emotions. But there is a catch!

Where in the Bible did God ever say he was going to hand us the life we want on a silver platter? If you ask God to physically expand your borders, is he just going to hand you 100,000 acres of land? No. He is going to hand you the tools to obtain that land if it is within his will for your life.

Think about it like this. Your kids are running around the house driving you nuts. Grandma gave them a can of Mt. Dew and there they go bouncing off the walls. You mutter under your aggravated breath, “God give me patients…mumble, mumble…” Do you really think God is going to give you patients? Not likely. In fact, just about that time, the caffeine really starts to work it’s magic and the kids go straight bonkers. Guess what, God just answered your prayer. He gave you an extreme opportunity to exercise your patients. It’s called disciplining your mind, will, and emotions. If you do not use and maintain the tools in your workshop, they get cobwebs and start rusting.

You see, God has already handed us the tools we need in this life to make it. The question becomes, are we maintaining those tools?

So, these are dangerous words. Are you starting to follow me a little bit? Lets break it down:

Spirit lead me where my trust is without borders — You just got an endless, dark path. He has already given you a Guide to light the way. Your feet have already been shod with the gospel of peace to walk with confidence wherever you go.

Let me walk upon the waters, Wherever You would call me — You just opened a floodgate. Get ready to be washed away! If you have faith, the size of a mustard seed, you can move mountains, part oceans, crush any trial in front of you. So, that shield of faith is not just for shielding yourself from the arrows of lies from the enemy, it is now your spiritual water-board.

Take me deeper than my feet could ever wander — What? Now you are asking to be drowned? Are you going to be a Peter and walk on those rough waves, keeping your eyes on Jesus? Or are you going to freak out that God is working miracles in your life, and start stumbling all over your problems?

And my faith will be made stronger, In the presence of my Savior — Remember asking for patients a little bit ago? How is your faith going to be made stronger if it is not being exercised? Get ready for all hell to break loose on you. You want to be stronger? You hit those dead-weights and start pumping.

Now it’s your turn. Go pick apart The Prayer of Jabez.

Dangerous words indeed.

All irony, humor, and jokes aside. These thoughts humble me. You see, I have prayed that prayer many times. I have laid on the ground in reverent worship singing those lyrics, many times.

You want to know about my day? I woke up depressed, frustrated, my spirit felt crushed. God has had these thoughts on my heart for weeks. Every week a still, small voice telling me to write them down. This morning these verses were laid on my heart:

I have called you back from the ends of the earth, saying, ‘You are my servant.’ For I have chosen you and will not throw you away. Don’t be afraid, for I am with you. Don’t be discouraged, for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you. I will hold you up with my victorious right hand. “See, all your angry enemies lie there, confused and humiliated. Anyone who opposes you will die and come to nothing. You will look in vain for those who tried to conquer you. Those who attack you will come to nothing. For I hold you by your right hand— I, the Lord your God. And I say to you, ‘Don’t be afraid. I am here to help you.

Isaiah 41:9-13 NLT

God has no interest in destroying us, or making us teeter on the ledge. He is interested in enabling us in overcoming our fears, being victorious, and overcoming all odds while we give him the glory.

It took all day at work, mulling over these thoughts to come to peace with the chaos that is taking place in my own personal life right now. The question is, am I diligently excising the tools I have been given?

This week I am fasting a few things. Every time I think about wanting food, or partaking in some activity I have given up for a week, I am going to stop and pray, thank God, and praise him for all the blessings he has put in my life. Then I will worship him and seek for his wisdom and guidance on whatever matter eating away at my heart.

So, my dear brothers and sisters, be strong and immovable. Always work enthusiastically for the Lord, for you know that nothing you do for the Lord is ever useless.

1 Corinthians 15:58 NLT

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Peace

13614999_10210021434835319_5553602689575572597_nBefore you think I have lost my marbles with this post, please read to the end. I say that with some humor. They call me Wired. That is my road name. There are several reasons for that, but it is very fitting. I am wound up pretty tight about beliefs and ideas I hold, and tend to be over zealous and passionate about what I stand for. In my past life, going to blows was easy and exciting; violence was justified by cause. Do not misunderstand me, there are quite a number of individuals today I would love to give a good pop in the nose. But there is another way. Love your enemy, and do good to those who persecute you (Matthew 5:44). 

Jesus said, “I am leaving you with a gift – peace of mind and heart. And the peace I give is a gift the world cannot give. So don’t be troubled or afraid.” (John 14:27) With all the current events going on in today’s world, it is hard to find that peace. Fear, anxiety, hate, racism, and murder seem to run rampant as you watch the news every day. Most find it so depressing they give up trying to keep up with it.

Where do you turn for peace and comfort?

Personally speaking, I turn to my bike. I mount up, hammer down on the throttle, make those pipes scream as I listen to the wind blasting against my ears, and I pray. Sometimes I scream. Ultimately, I cast my fears and anxieties of the world around me on God.

Who are we suppose to love?

But when the Pharisees heard that he had silenced the Sadducees with his reply, they met together to question him again.One of them, an expert in religious law, tried to trap him with this question:“Teacher, which is the most important commandment in the law of Moses?”
“‘You must love the Lord your God with all your heart, all your soul, and all your mind.’This is the first and greatest commandment. A second is equally important: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’ The entire law and all the demands of the prophets are based on these two commandments.”

~ Matthew 22:34-40

Think about those verses for a moment. No this is not a message of “lets all love each other and get along and sing kumbaya around the campfire.” This is a message of hope, and peace. You can believe something I completely disagree with, yet I can still love you as my neighbor. You can be an ISIS member, a murderer, a racist, and whatever else you want to lump in there that I disagree with; yet I can still love you. It is hard? Yes, very.

I believe in a very simple saying: be the change you wish to see in the world around you. 

If I choose to love you, I can hold no malice toward you. That does not mean I support you. It means I am called to view you as a human being that is loved in the eyes of God. THAT is what the world around us needs to do. That is what I need to do.

Slaying spiritual dragons

12790987_976258302411821_6552811498123989529_nblogSome may be wondering why the name change? Dragon Slayer? Really? What does that have to do with anything?

Sit back and let me tell you. God has been doing some wild things in my life, yet the journey has been, and is, brutal. The giants set in my path have been shooting flames in my directions, licking at my heals, sometimes scorching, sometimes doused by little pools of water. Ultimately I have been watching God’s grace overtake my life in odd ways. Some people would describe it at torture, but I have to be thoroughly honest and say even though it hurts, I know God is growing me for a much greater purpose. No I don’t believe that daily, but in general I do.

In the last year alone:

  • My parents house burned down
  • My grandfather died
  • My Dad died
  • My association with Godly men I love and respect came to a screeching halt
  • My association with Godly men / bikers I love and respect resumed
  • My marriage has been constantly attacked and on the rocks
  • My family has been under grave spiritual attack
  • My Disciple brothers and bros have also been under heavy physical and spiritual attack

This is merely a list of generalizations due to individuals’ privacy being at stake. The point is life has been chaotic. I wake up daily tired, not wanting to fight, discouraged, and beaten down by those around me. It is not all bad though! There are those who pick me up, dust me off, and put a sword back in my hands. Then there are others who hold my arms up in the midst of battle like Aaron did for Moses.

The truth is my sword is constantly swinging, and it takes so much effort to stab the dragon through the gullet when you risk breaking your sword on the iron strong scales.

A week ago I was riding down through Maricopa to Gila Bend. It is a gorgeous ride, full of twists and turns, sharp bends, some rough road, and small up and down hills. Lets just say I was in a bit of a mood, feeling a bit ornery. The bike was crankin’, throttle wide open, adrenaline  pumping, and all I heard was wind and some screaming Cobras. I had reached my place, come into a dimension of spiritual silence. Now I could think. Its like the noise level at that point drives out the noise in your head. Out of nowhere I just started swinging my sword, crying out to God, rebuking principalities and powers of evil, begging God to draw near, seeking answers, and commanding legions of angels to protect and fight with me. I was particularly praying for the angel on my bike!

I refuse to let the dragons of this world swallow me whole. Its amazing the spiritual power we have when we hit that dimension of being able to commune in the spirit with God our Father. That can be a quiet prayer closet, or on a screaming bike at 100 mph. God will meet us where we are at, without ever changing who He is. He simply asks us to search and know His heart. When you know your warrior companions inside and out, you never have to question if they will slay dragons with you or not. Likewise, God is always going to be there already claiming victory over any dragon long before we slay him.

Be blessed.

GOD IS GREAT 888

Is God really in control, or am I?

The subject matter of today’s My Utmost for His Highest (below) is personally a huge challenge for me. I’m a “plan B” kind of guy, always having a plan or strategy of escape. With so much going on in our family’s lives right now, it’s easy to look for the next step or plan. The reality is we must wait and be patient, listening for the still small voice of the One who loves us and has promised to meet our every need.

I can tell you from personal experience that resting in a place of complete surrender to God’s work and will in my life is the most incredible and scary thing I have ever done. In doing so he has asked me to do some very difficult and somewhat insane things. But as I look back and see the miracles in my life that have come to pass and the opportunities I have been presented with, because of my willingness to surrender my fears and ambitions, it blows me away. You would think it would be so easy for me to do it again, but the truth is that it is even harder to wrap my mind around such a concept, particularly now that I have a family to think about.

Today’s My Utmost for His Highest
Look Again and Think
01.27.2015

Do not worry about your life… —Matthew 6:25
A warning which needs to be repeated is that “the cares of this world and the deceitfulness of riches,” and the lust for other things, will choke out the life of God in us (Matthew 13:22). We are never free from the recurring waves of this invasion. If the frontline of attack is not about clothes and food, it may be about money or the lack of money; or friends or lack of friends; or the line may be drawn over difficult circumstances. It is one steady invasion, and these things will come in like a flood, unless we allow the Spirit of God to raise up the banner against it.

“I say to you, do not worry about your life….” Our Lord says to be careful only about one thing— our relationship to Him. But our common sense shouts loudly and says, “That is absurd, I must consider how I am going to live, and I must consider what I am going to eat and drink.” Jesus says you must not. Beware of allowing yourself to think that He says this while not understanding your circumstances. Jesus Christ knows our circumstances better than we do, and He says we must not think about these things to the point where they become the primary concern of our life. Whenever there are competing concerns in your life, be sure you always put your relationship to God first.

“Sufficient for the day is its own trouble” (Matthew 6:34). How much trouble has begun to threaten you today? What kind of mean little demons have been looking into your life and saying, “What are your plans for next month— or next summer?” Jesus tells us not to worry about any of these things. Look again and think. Keep your mind on the “much more” of your heavenly Father (Matthew 6:30).

Faith conquers fear

oxen-yokeThis is a very bitter sweet post for me to be writing tonight. The irony is staggering in all actuality, but what an amazing opportunity for me to stare the greatest of enemies in the face, and charge head on?

So a couple of days ago, I was browsing through my XM radio and stumbled across a sermon. I am somewhat embarrassed to admit that I listened to the entire sermon because it was by someone I am not a fan of at all. But I will digress. The point is that the topic caught my interest and left me thinking some deep thoughts that sound so basic, yet they are mind shattering when you implement them into the reality of your life.

Faith conquers all fear. Fear is the absence of faith. The truth of the matter is, it does not make any difference which one you embrace, they have the same working property. When you embrace either one, you give it the right, the authority, to take root in your life, and the outcome will be affected whether you like it or not.

This story was told:

There was a guy who had a bad habit of worrying about something bad happening to him. He was at work one day, and the boss said everyone could leave early to attend a birthday party for one of the foreman. This guy was about to get out of the frozen box car he was working in to leave as well, when he came to the startling reality that the door had closed and he was trapped inside. For hours, he screamed and banged on the door until his voice was horse and hands were bleeding. He was very aware he was in a box car freezer and he became consumed with fear that he would freeze to death. Hours went by, he only got colder and colder. He found a piece of cardboard and road these words: “It is getting so cold. These may be my last words.” Sure enough, when the crew got back to work the next day, they found this guy in the boxcar, dead. According to his autopsy, he had frozen to death.

But…this was a huge mystery. You see, the temperature in the boxcar was only 61 degrees.

Shocked? I was too. You see, when you give in to fear, you allow it to play with your mind, which will play with every other area of your life. His fear became his reality. It consumed him, robbing him of both faith in being found, and ultimately his life.

All you need to do is pick up your Bible. It will not take long before you start reading promise after promise from God. I am not going to give you examples. Why? Because it is each individuals duty to seek our own relationship with God and to find His promises for us.

When we implement faith into every scenario, not only do we allow it to take root in our lives, we are also relinquishing our fears to God and basically telling Him that these are not our problems, they are His. So lets say something bad or awful still comes to pass. Do we give up on faith? Not at all. If you were able to look back at the bigger picture, you would see that God can take any circumstance in our lives and turn it into something far more amazing than we can imagine.

You are probably wondering why this is such irony for me to be talking about right now. Well, if anyone had any reason to fear right now, it would be me. For three years I have sacrificed for my family in ways you cannot even begin to imagine. Tomorrow, the fate and totality of my small little family will be in the hands of a judge. The final judgement will be made, and it could make us whole, or shatter what little we do have.

Here is the greatest part! I am not afraid! God has given our family so many promises! Not only of a future, but of a mission, even a ministry. In fact, I am confident in these promises and the future.

God has been so faithful in my life. He does not set us up for failure. He does test our faith, but explicitly asks us to trust him and leave our biggest fears in his hands.

“Are you tired? Worn out? Burned out on religion? Come to me. Get away with me and you’ll recover your life. I’ll show you how to take a real rest. Walk with me and work with me—watch how I do it. Learn the unforced rhythms of grace. I won’t lay anything heavy or ill-fitting on you. Keep company with me and you’ll learn to live freely and lightly.” ~ Matthew 11:28-30 (The Message)

Relaunched passion

The fool is back! No really, you have to be an idiot to close a blog that gets about 2,000 hits a week. It has been a refreshing break though. But who am I kidding?? I have been blogging elsewhere, just under an alias. a good way to step out of the lime light.

So I haven’t written here since 2012. Crazy. Maybe I should go back and look at all the non-sense I have written. *chuckles*

I would really like to share where I have been. Many of the blog posts to come have already been posted elsewhere, but they hold the thought processes I have been tinkering with. So much has changed. So much growth in such a short period of time.

Life is to short to not be drastic. My faith, beliefs, and life processes have all changed. I have taken some crazy turns in my life that warrant the “edge of the seat” response from any listener, but the growth we are talking about now is really not me at all. I have to give God the glory!

Sit back and enjoy the ride. Open your heart and mind, stay fluid, and let me help challenge you.

Once again

Im sitting on an airplane, yet again at 30,000 feet, with a great deal on my heart and mind. Specifically I am thinking about my wife, kids, and the path God has us on. I will not sugar coat it, I’m confused. I have been distant from my writing for many reasons. Not only have I been insanely busy traveling all over the place with work, I have not really had a great deal to talk about that I find worthwhile. My personal relationship with God has been very strained which has been the main reason for that. With as busy as I have been, it has been hard to focus on that relationship while working an insane amount of hours, away from home, while also trying to maintain a marriage.
Ah, marriage. No lie, it is tough. I have been reading The Five Love Languages by Gary Chapman, and boy do I have a lot to learn. It is not fun, but the more I research, talk with my wife, and grow, the more I am seeing the value of learning the languages my wife speaks that I do not.
Where is God in all this right now? I am not 100% sure, but I know that lately he has done some heavy tugging on my heart, asking me to make some changes and surrender even more in my life. It is really kind of scary. He has come through for me over and over agian, so why do I fear the changes that he is presenting me with? Maybe because it is not just me I have to think about anymore? Maybe, but I think it is probably more so an unwillingness to “let go, and let God.” I am in a very secure place right now, and I am afraid of letting go of that place.
I know this post is vague, and I apologize for that. Right now is simply a place where I am trying to process what is really going on in my life.