Friday, August 29, 2008

What Is Righteousness?

Christ never sinned! But God treated him as a sinner, so that Christ could make us acceptable to God. 2Corinthians 5:21 CEV

…so that Christ could make us ACCEPTABLE to God! WOW, WOW, WOW, WOW! Those of us, who have given our life to Christ, making Him Lord, now (right now) stand before Him in a state of acceptance.

We don’t have to work for it – Christ did it; Hallelujah!

Righteousness entitles us – yes, “entitles” – to Kingdom stuff. I know, “entitles” sounds arrogant but it is the truth, Let us give thanks to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ! For in our union with Christ he has blessed us by giving us every spiritual blessing in the heavenly world. Even before the world was made, God had already chosen us to be his through our union with Christ, so that we would be holy and without fault before him. Because of his love God had already decided that through Jesus Christ he would make us his children---this was his pleasure and purpose. Let us praise God for his glorious grace, for the free gift he gave us in his dear Son! Ephesians 1:3-6 GNB It would be FALSE humility to say it any other way.

Unfortunately, much of the Church believes the lie of our enemy who says it is wrong to grab hold of our inheritance.

Our acceptance is not simply that we are just “barely lucky enough” to squeak by… NO! we have the privilege to stand before Him in the state of “sonship”, free from guilt and fear! Sonship also entitles us (there’s that word again) to the Kingdom and all that is within.

This is the “Good News” which we are called to spread throughout the land.

Abba, thank You for Your free gift of salvation, for making me and all who will come unto You through Your Son, Jesus Christ, able to stand before You guilt-free. I thank You for Your sweet fellowship and for peace that surpasses all understanding. You are good and worthy of all glory, honor and praise! Amen and amen!


Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Common Clay Pots

For it is not ourselves that we preach; we preach Jesus Christ as Lord, and ourselves as your servants for Jesus’ sake. The God who said, “Out of darkness the light shall shine!” is the same God who made his light shine in our hearts, to bring us the knowledge of God’s glory shining in the face of Christ. Yet we who have this spiritual treasure are like common clay pots, in order to show that the supreme power belongs to God, not to us. We are often troubled, but not crushed; sometimes in doubt, but never in despair; there are many enemies, but we are never without a friend; and though badly hurt at times, we are not destroyed. At all times we carry in our mortal bodies the death of Jesus, so that his life also may be seen in our bodies. 2Corinthians 4:5-10 GNB

The Story of the Cracked Pot (Author Unknown)

A water bearer in India had two large pots, one hung on each end of a pole which he carried across his neck. One of the pots had a crack in it and while the other pot was perfect and always delivered a full portion of water at the end of the long walk from the stream to the master’s house, the cracked pot arrived only half full.

For a full two years this went on daily, with the bearer delivering only one and a half pots full of water in his master’s house. Of course, the perfect pot was proud of its accomplishments. But the poor cracked pot was ashamed of its own imperfection and miserable that it was able to accomplish only half of what it had been made to do.

After two years of what it perceived to be a bitter failure, the cracked pot spoke to the water bearer one day by the stream. “I am ashamed of myself and I want to apologize to you.”

“Why?” asked the bearer. “What are you ashamed of?”

“I have been able, for these past two years, to deliver only half my load because this crack in my side causes water to leak out all the way back to your master’s house. Because of my flaws, you have to do all of this work and you don’t get full value from your efforts,” the pot said.

The water bearer felt sorry for the old cracked pot and in his compassion he said, “As we return to the master’s house, I want you to notice the beautiful flowers along the path.”

Indeed, as they went up the hill, the old cracked pot took notice of the sun warming the beautiful wild flowers on the side of the path and this cheered it some. But at the end of the trail, it still felt bad because it had leaked out half its load and so again it apologized to the bearer for its failure.

The bearer said to the pot, “Did you notice that there were flowers only on your side of your path, but not on the other pot’s side? That’s because I have always known about your flaw and I took advantage of it. I planted flower seeds on your side of the path and every day while we walk back from the stream, you’ve watered them. For two years I have been able to pick these beautiful flowers to decorate my master’s table. Without you being just the way you are, he would not have this beauty to grace his house.”

Each of us has our own unique flaws. We’re all cracked pots. But if we will allow it, our flaws will be used to grace the Master’s table.

Praise God that in spite of ourselves, He use’s us according to His plan and for His glory!!!!!!


Monday, August 25, 2008

Honor With Words But Not The Heart...

So the Pharisees and the teachers of the Law asked Jesus, “Why is it that your disciples do not follow the teaching handed down by our ancestors, but instead eat with ritually unclean hands?” Jesus answered them, “How right Isaiah was when he prophesied about you! You are hypocrites, just as he wrote: ‘These people, says God, honor me with their words, but their heart is really far away from me. It is no use for them to worship me, because they teach human rules as though they were my laws!’ “You put aside God’s command and obey human teachings.” Matthew 7:5-8 GNB

I have been a believer for more than 14 yrs and I have been involved with several mainstream denominations while on this journey. One thing that I have learned so far is that no one movement has all the answers. In fact, the reason we have so many denominations and movements is because leaders come to the conclusion that whatever piece of truth they have come to understand and so they must go off and teach this truth under a new name i.e. “1st Such and Such of….” I’ve said it before and I will as many more times as needed – “Denominationalism is nothing more than the dismemberment of the Body of Christ!” and the more “religious” we become about our personal set of beliefs, the harder it gets to teach the Truth instead of our truth.

In the above passage, the Pharisees and teachers of the law represent religion. Religion is about rules, hoping to make oneself acceptable in the eyes of God. Unfortunately, religion can only lead to death, never to life!

If we look close at this passage we can discover a simple truth within the questioning of Jesus – “Why is it that your disciples do not follow the teaching handed down by our ancestors…?” Did you catch it? Those who are Jesus’ (…your disciples do not follow…), follow His teachings not the teachings of men. When we follow the teachings of men we get bogged down in debate and striving (mostly debate). Jesus came to give us life more abundantly “The thief comes only in order to steal, kill, and destroy. I have come in order that you might have life---life in all its fullness.” John 10:10 GNB Jesus nailed it when He said, “These people, says God, honor me with their words, but their heart is really far away from me...” Works are the product of the flesh; worship is born of the heart.

Jesus also offers rest for the religious pursuit of the soul. Each one of us is born with the quest to find the answer to life and that quest can be satisfied only in Jesus! “Come to me, all of you who are tired from carrying heavy loads, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke and put it on you, and learn from me, because I am gentle and humble in spirit; and you will find rest. For the yoke I will give you is easy, and the load I will put on you is light.” Matthew 11:28-30 GNB

Life Demands An Answer…God Is It!


Tuesday, August 19, 2008

...They Were All Amazed.

On the Sabbath he began to teach in the synagogue. Many people were there; and when they heard him, they were all amazed. “Where did he get all this?” they asked. “What wisdom is this that has been given him? How does he perform miracles? Isn't he the carpenter, the son of Mary, and the brother of James, Joseph, Judas, and Simon? Aren't his sisters living here?”
And so they rejected him. Mark 6:2-3 GNB

Many times throughout the scriptures we see people amazed at the work of God; can you imagine what it would have been like to witness your city walls crumble at God’s command – how about watching a pillar of fire lead a group of people through the dessert or to watch Jesus re-attach the ear of one of your fellow enlisted men. Good news, Jesus is still doing great works in our midst today!

In fact, I have experienced first hand His great and marvelous power, for example: in 2005, I was told that I was dying of heart failure and that I desperately need a heart transplant if I was going to live. On Aug. 28th ’05 I was admitted into the hospital and no one was sure if I would go home again. But God had a plan that was beyond human wisdom! I left that hospital exactly two weeks later with my original heart in tact and with the word miracle being accepted by some. By the end of Feb. ’06, I was removed from the transplant list completely and to this day I have a clean bill of health and even some of the medical professionals admitting that a miracle has taken place – there is a lot more details to this story but I want to get to my bigger point.

As I read the above verse, I was hit by the fact that those who just moments ago amazed at Jesus now rejected Him with such firmness that He had to leave the city. That same spirit was and is at work within those who insist that what has happened to me is just “luck” or the “great work of the doctors” – just a quick side note: if God chooses to use the medical profession or to just apply His touch to the situation, that’s His right and I say praise God in both situations! We spend too much time debating how God works. He is in charge of everything and if you are told you are going to die and then you are told your are going to live…that is a miracle and miracles are of God—nothing else.

When you witness something that is so mind blowing that it is outside human normalcy, give God the glory and don’t try to “figure it out”. If we look closely at this situation it is easy to see what happened, they reasoned with the mind of man and with five quick questions they rejected not just the miracles and amazing authority with which Jesus operated but Him personally – how tragic!

Many around me have said with amazement that something great has taken place within my physical body but when I tell them who is behind the miracle they have reasoned it away and rejected Him.

Consider again those things which you have witnessed and thought to be miraculous but eventually blew off as just luck or coincidence because of your or someone else’s “great reasoning” and give GOD THE CREDIT AND GLORY HE DESERVES!


Thursday, August 14, 2008

...From God's Perspective

I was talking with a friend yesterday and we got on the subject of prayer and flowing in the Spirit. He said something so simple and yet huge – “When I pray, I try to pray from God’s perspective on the situation…”. Now, you are probably thinking, well duh! When I first heard him make that statement I didn’t think much about it either but after we unpacked it, the hugeness of that “simple” blurb exploded in my spirit.

I began to ponder the day-to-day life of the average Christian from God’s perspective, asking myself “How does God see this and how does God see that”… I realized that all-to-often the prayers of the saints are born from our very limited human perspective, producing VERY limited results. The Bible is full of stories about great works of God taking place when men and women were lined-up with God’s agenda (perspective).

If we would take the time to see the situation (whatever it may be) as God sees it and then pray and/or act according to His perspective, WOW! One thing I know for certain, God would be glorified! His name would once again be known throughout the land, His marvelous works would testify of His goodness and mercy. We wouldn’t have to spend our energy “defending Him” – if we are honest, we are not really defending Him as much as we are defending our own reputations and that of our home team…I could spend a long time camped here on this subject but let’s stick to the bigger point and leave this discussion for another day.

I know for certain that when we have God’s perspective for any situation, we will be moved with compassion and do what we see our Father in heaven doing – we would actually walk as Jesus walked...

Time for a new bracelet - WAJW.


Monday, August 11, 2008

It’s The Truth, God Only Accepts Hymns!

Then they sang a hymn and went out to the Mount of Olives. Matthew 26:30

I hope that I grabbed your attention with the title – Lol! There is great debate regarding this subject, especially here in the south.

I have known the Lord for more than 14 yrs. now and I have heard numerous times that the only true offering of worship is in the form of "hymns" meaning, those songs which are found in the "Hymnal". Well, this morning as I was reading in the book of Matthew, I came across the word HYMN – I don’t know why I haven’t seen it before but I saw it today as clear as could be. They sang a hymn… as I looked at the word hymn I realized not only that hymns are Biblical but that they were here way before KJV was even a thought. Then I noticed something even more incredible… Jesus was right there with the disciples singing a hymn to His Father – WOW!

Right then and there I realized that I can no longer speak of “hymns” as just some antiquated form of worship and that all “hymnals” should be tossed in the dump because they are not for today! I’ll get back to this in a second…

The question which needs to be asked and answered is this – What is a hymn? Well, a hymn is a song, ode or poem delivered in honor of God or a song of celebration, joy and praise to God.

  • Honor – 1. the esteem due or paid to worth 2. any expression of respect or of high estimation by words or actions 3. exalted rank or place; distinction 4. reverence; veneration or any act by which reverence and submission are expressed, as in worship paid to God
  • Praise – 1. to commend, applaud or to express admiration 2. to extol in words or song; to magnify; to glorify 3. to express personal gratitude
Well, there you have it – hymns should be part of the everyday Christian walk, I’m still not convinced that we should keep the “Hymnals” but I am convinced that we should give great honor to God and celebrate Him with as much praise as we can even as Jesus did. Hey, we ware the bracelets, hats, shirts and bumper stickers asking the question WWJD? Well, in this small piece of scripture we know beyond a shadow-of-doubt that one thing He did was, sing hymns to His Father…


Thursday, August 7, 2008

I'm Sorry!

I wrote this blog some time ago but in light of my last post, I felt compelled to post it again here...

To all survivors of - 9/11; hurricane Katrina; the tsunami; the war on terror; the Amish slayings and most recently, the Carolina beach fire.

To the homosexual community.

To those whose innocence was stolen while abused at the hand of those who were called to show the way.

To those who have been judged instead of supported with grace.

To single moms who have been shunned instead of girded.

To the many other groups and/or individuals I have not mentioned here by name...


Let me explain, I am a Christian leader and I have been very frustrated for some time about comments and protests that have been made "in the name of God" by those of the Christian faith who claim to represent Him in the vocational capacity. I am not going to name any certain group, individual or denomination as that would simply add to the problem. I must also confess that in the past, I too have made judgments and held to certain opinions that I am now ashamed of.

In my frustration I have said many times… "When are we (Christian leaders) going to shut up about 'God's judgments' and tell of His love and acceptance when it comes to tragedy's" (natural or caused by man). I feel so hurt, ashamed and sad every time that some "pastor" or group of "Christian protestors" stands by and boldly proclaims that the reason for any of these events (esp. those mentioned above) is because God is mad at our sin and has unleashed His fury upon certain groups of people as a result.

I am not trying to promote anything with this letter other than to say that GOD IS NOT MAD AT YOU, HE LOVES YOU AND HE WANTS YOU!

To any who will read this and say, "Yea right, I've heard this before"… unfortunately, you're right and again – I'M SORRY!

I simply ask that you would not hold God accountable for any of these tragedies and especially for the misrepresentation of Him, by His servants. We are only human and full of sin like everybody else. Please reconsider your opinion of the God who loves you enough that He sent His only Son to die on your behalf so that you could be forgiven and find love, hope, freedom, wholeness and purpose!

God loves you and so do I!

I hate to use a title, but I want to close with mine so that you will know that not all Christians or pastors hate you or agree with the hurtfully wrong things said in the past days, months and years…

In His love,
pastor Adam

God's judgement could not be withheld...WHAT!?

When I hear people saying things like "God's wrath or judgment" I get so frigg'n frustrated. I know some of you will get mad at me just for using the word frigg'n - deal with it! The issue at hand is much greater than a simple slang word.

I won't reveal the ministry by name as it doesn’t matter, the reality is - we can cut and paste any number of different ministry names into this slot, sadly, we can often paste the name "Christianity" in.

Back to my thought - recently this particular ministry released a "word" and this is a sample of what was said: "...the scales of sin and judgment were full – so full that judgment could not be withheld over San Francisco." It seems that every time there is some major event (hurricane, earthquake, fire, flood, etc.) the Church is quick to give God the credit, the problem with that is...God's judgment upon sin has already been handed down at the cross, sin's debt has been covered.

Personally, I have nothing against the ministry which made this statement; in fact, I support most of what they are about. However, if I was living in the Bay Area (BTW, I grew up there and I am well aware of the mindset concerning Christianity) and living separated from God, would this boldly stated "prophecy" invite me into relationship with God or chase me further away?

I may be completely wrong here, but I believe the Church is to be THE agent--the only agent--of invitation but all-to-often we are better at causing greater alienation...

This is just my heart lately - it has nothing to do with any one person, denomination or specific ministry. I am simply adjusting my own thinking to fit better into the mind of God, whose views are far greater than mine; whose heart for the people of San Francisco is full of love, compassion and desire...


Wednesday, August 6, 2008

and so it begins...

Other than a few myspace blogs (do they even really count?), this is the my first blog. It won't be long as I have used up my time just setting the thing up - Lol!

As I get a feel for blogging, I hope to get my many daily thoughts into brief writings and so it begins...