Did Jesus have a Facebook Page?

Christianity 0ut of the Box


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Don’t have a backdoor? Ya might want to get one


Wouldn’t it be nice if what we need to know was always laid out in front of us? Splashed on the local billboard, or sent via text or email?

The “writing on the wall” is a great idea but only if it reads good news.

Bad news is easy; just turn on the TV. Check the internet. Log in to your social network and you’ll find the latest in gossip, violence and crime centrally located so you can’t miss it.

So, where’s the good news? In the print so small it can only be read with a magnifying glass.

Ephesians 2:8 “For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith—and this not from yourselves, it is the gift of God.”

Good news doesn’t get attention like bad news. Ratings are lost covering the truth. Media prefers ratings over encouragement and hope.

Why promote anything good? The world is a chaotic mess. Listening to the majority of people you would get the idea God either doesn’t exist anymore or left.

The reason many believe God left and hasn’t returned is they see no evidence of him; he is nowhere to be found.

That depends on what you are looking at, reading or listening to. It may also depend on which doors you open.

By that I am convinced God enjoys quiet arrivals through unlikely entrances.back-door-3

He was born in a manger surrounded by farm animals, not a palace.

He worked as a carpenter and was known as Mary and Joseph’s boy.

He walked on foot during his ministry wearing a cloak and sandals, not fancy robes and handmade shoes.

Forget the gold and silver placed on many heads of Kings, his Crown of Thorns was used as a mockery of the position he claimed.

The questions remains for many “Why did God do it this way? Why wasn’t Jesus born the King of Kings in a palace made for royalty? Why is God so mysterious? Why can’t he call me and tell me what he wants?”

If we knew the answers to those questions, he might not be God.

And maybe God didn’t want to do it that way.

Maybe God is smarter than all of us; put together.

My theory is God prefers to walk in the back doors of our lives; quietly, gently and mostly when invited.  He shows up frequently when we are alone and desperate.  He speaks for the most part peacefully and calmly. In reality, his word sheds his genuine spirit and character allowing the reader to get to know him in a personal manner. His wisdom, knowledge and understanding are packaged waiting to be unwrapped by anyone who seeks to learn what many have no idea even exists.

If you are waiting for God to knock on your front door, your wait may be long.

IF you seek his presence on a regular basis, leave the back door opened.

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Where do you belong? And what are you doing about it?


Sounds silly doesn’t it.

Of course we all know where we belong. We are where we are. Or are we?

Truth is many are where they are because they put themselves there. Choosing to go, be or do what we choose results many times in making something work when it wasn’t meant to work.  In other words, omitting God’s design for us.

A perfect example is the so-called “Affordable Care Act” or government run health insurance.

The program is an unraveling failure about to happen. Why?

God never ordained a country to promote a government run health care plan. This is a man-made, power hungry, money stealing plot for leaders to gain control of the people.  

The shoe doesn’t fit. So throw it away or ask God to find you a new pair of shoes? Duh….

Life becomes uncomfortable and unsettling when we aren’t living out the purpose God planned for us. Many don’t even try. Others give up before finding out what their destiny is. The result can leave catastrophic effects on everyone involved.

Symptoms occur such as insignificance and inferiority which can then lead to irritation and retaliation. The lack of direction unfolds and a circle of mistakes follow. Waves of hardships and difficulties surround people who refuse to seek God for the reason they were born in the first place.602261_714297525266379_1807094418_n

Joseph, in the Bible is an example of one who knew his destiny. However, his life was not all peaches n’ cream. In fact for many years he was subjected to more than his share of misery including betrayal, false accusations, beatings, and imprisonment.

Joseph stood alone many years. He didn’t allow the expectations of others to get in the way of his dream. He was different and he knew it. Accepting his uniqueness eased the years of torment and anguish he suffered because he used it for God.

No matter what he went through he kept his focus on the goal God had laid out for him many years before. Doing so brought him from the “pit to the palace.”

God will lead us to his calling when we seek and spend time alone with him and read his word. Giving us clues along the way, the Holy Spirit will help us find our passion and desires for life. Self-examination aids in clarifying our positions before God.

As we search, positive qualities will emerge that others see in us. The ability to solve problems unlocks doors of favor and opens up hidden answers we didn’t see before.

God honors us when we plant seeds of hope in the hurting. Encouragement goes a long way in a heart full of pain.

Are you ready to stand out, stand alone and live for God instead of the anticipations of others?

Are you ready to be different?

“When you announce your goals, you provide every friend an opportunity to prove their loyalty.”

Dr. Mike Murdock

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Missing Something?


The airport parking lot was almost full so finding an empty space was virtually impossible. Running late into the terminal waving your boarding pass you barely miss crashing into some kids. By-passing the need for relief a fast sprint in and out of visitors finally you see the boarding area. Racing to the attendant to hand her your ticket, she points at the window to show you your plane.

“I am so sorry sir, but there is your plane heading down the runway.”

Out of breath, the plane leaves without you.th

 

Don’t you just hate that?

 

That feeling of missing something. A free trip. Lunch with a friend. The job you wanted but didn’t get.

Is it possible to ever come to a place where you never feel you have missed anything?

The answer is yes. Once you have been stripped of everything material, physical, mental and emotional there is only one thing left. The spirit that lives within us.

God is a spirit. He relates to us through the Holy Spirit he has placed within us.

After we are left with nothing, we begin to get “tunnel vision” where we only hear him, feel him and recognize his voice.

Joseph experienced this. Moses did too. David understood while he ran for his life from Saul.

There are issues within our hearts that must take a hike especially since most of our seeking God is self-centered to begin with.  Often this is accomplished through the idiotic choices we make, or as Joseph did by taunting his older brothers with his dreams. Moses was kicked out of Egypt for killing a man and David outshined the King.

Imprisonment for 13 years, wilderness living for 40 and running from cave to cave to survive will or should knock the self-regard out of anyone.

Once we have lost the quest for earthly desires, missed appointments or the “all about me fun” questioning what is really important takes precedence.  These false choices or actions we had depended on to “make our day” all of a sudden become our adversaries. It is then we first begin to seek God for his presence; to simply sit with him enjoying his company.

We will only find what we are looking for in Jesus. There is no other satisfaction; no other comparable.

“I am my Beloved’s and His desire is toward me.” Song of Solomon 7:10

He yearns for us to go deeper with him so that he may impart to us his secrets, knowledge, wisdom and ways.  

As time passes we begin to place him first realizing what a privilege it is to have this personal intimacy with the Creator of the Universe.  The joy of being sold out for Jesus trumps all pain, persecution, rejection, abandonment, fun, entertainment, and that lost flight to an earthly paradise.

All of a sudden you comprehend Jesus is paradise. 

No need for a plane ticket after all.

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A String of Benedict Arnolds


I hear Joseph coming.

He strolls around Egypt in his golden chariot. People know who he is by now. He is no longer the betrayed brother; but the 2nd most powerful man in town; or the world.knife

His suffering is off in the distance and only a reminder of where he was. He was the last person on earth his backstabbing turncoats believed would ever amount to anything.

But….Joseph trusted his God.

And God believed in his Joseph.

The fires of hell are smaller than we make them out to be. The enemy must have our consent to perform his sinister deeds. Joseph knew this. Joseph endured it. Joseph became what the devil could not stop. Joseph took authority over wickedness and won.

What evil meant for harm, God turned for good.” Genesis 50: 20
And not just for Joseph but his string of Benedict Arnolds.

He was the favored son of Jacob, yet a pawn of sibling rivalry that ultimately backfired.

He was to carry on the lineage of Israel God set forth from his ancestor Abraham.

Joseph’s ability to forgive his brothers was a prized characteristic. It was a key element of God’s plan for it to be fulfilled.

He knew God had a much larger picture to be painted than one just with him in it even if he had no idea what the frame would include. As it turns out, Joseph was a survival kit in the making for the lineage of Jesus.

How often do we contemplate what God is going to do?

We dig deep in our closets for a frame to paint our plans. Opinions and brainstorming ideas are tinted with each stroke of the brush as if God is waiting to see what we have come up with.

Most likely he will never allow it to be placed in his gallery of artistry.

Why?

His ways are not our ways. Isaiah 55: 9

Joseph understood God’s future for him was limitless. However the notion he would reign as the only man directly under Pharaoh probably wasn’t on his radar. And I am sure his zealous brothers never “dreamed” the dream Joseph told them would ever come true.

The sordid clan he grew up with never saw it coming.

Shock couldn’t describe the look on their faces when they realized Joseph not only had risen to heights unseen, but he forgave them.

Why did he forgive them?

God’s plan for Joseph was to save his people; even if it meant immense loneliness and distress for the son of Jacob for many years. He held his faith in God through and over his pain. Why?created

Because Joseph trusted his God to complete the painting.

And his God understood Joseph knew the painting would one day line  Heaven’s gallery with the words written above it,

“It is finished.”

http://samuelatgilgal.wordpress.com/2013/01/12/love-and-the-christian-character/

http://goldenbible.wordpress.com/2013/01/12/a-psalmists-perspective/

http://timothyshockleysr.com/2013/01/12/just-a-thought-for-today-something-to-think-about/

http://goodchristianfiction.wordpress.com/2013/01/04/dont-let-time-get-away-from-you/

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The Kiss of Judas


History does repeat itself.

The game is the same, only the players have changed.

Who would have thought the story of a young Semite centuries ago would represent the truth through betrayal in a modern day fiasco?

As it was then so is it now. The older brothers may have thrown the younger to the dogs, but they didn’t expect the bite that came later.

The trouble with betrayal is the truth always comes out; maybe not for awhile but it lies deep in the ground only to be dug up in its own time.

In a modern courtroom appears those who would be the fall guys/ or girls. The scapegoats for the top achievers who managed to cover up the pit they dug; at least temporarily.

When it comes to saving your own neck what choice do you make?

The lie becomes one more lie and soon forgotten was the first lie. The trail of discrepancies pile up likes bricks; heavy and immovable.

Luke 8:17 “For there is nothing hidden that will not be disclosed, and nothing concealed that will not be known or brought out into the open.”

10 brothers agreed to pull off what they thought was a rather sly coup never counting the cost.

The heat of treachery is but a picture of a Judas kiss; living that kiss is full of an inner demoralization that eats at ones soul.

The brothers may have changed names, but the betrayal is the same.

The sly coup ended up with 4 dead men of honor and loyalty all for the sake of self-preservation for a desperate position.

The deceiver never knows the complete fallout of double-dealing. The hypocrite believes getting caught is absurd especially when other lives are dangling in the “wicked web” of thievery.

Proverbs 16:18 “Pride goes before destruction, a haughty spirit before a fall.”

Scapegoats lined up, one by one sent into the fiery furnace of communication. A turncoat has no problem fessing up to the original lie just like the 10 brothers they just make up another one. So it was then and so it is now.

Funny how both stories revealed the infidelity as a crossfire that wasn’t planned. A can of worms opened and crawled around on the dusty floors waiting to be seen.

Once the worms were discovered, a mighty charade began. The 10 brothers could no longer hide from their devious trap; so it was then and so it is now.

The legacy of trickery leaves many in the wake of pain, anger and hurt. Like Dominoes, the effect is a spiraling entanglement of misery for the innocent.

There are differences between these two webs of greed and jealousy.

The 10 brother’s humiliation of defamation and guile led to God’s turning evil for good.

The 2nd story doesn’t have an ending yet. But

As history repeats itself, we know the depth of perjury will be brought to justice.

No one is above the law no matter who the players are.

http://www.foxnews.com/opinion/2012/11/19/ugly-truth-about-benghazi-and-team-obama/

http://diaryofasuperchamp.wordpress.com/2012/11/19/holding-onto-offense-who-made-you-the-righteous-judge/

http://samuelatgilgal.wordpress.com/2012/11/19/one-straight-course/


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The Badgered Hounds of Society


The Bible is the spirit filled word of God. Some of the stories would make Hollywood blush.

A key ingredient is the characters; many of whom were a lot like you and me.

The following are a few movie titles to go with some of the most notorious.


Adam and Eve
: Hello Mother, Hello Father…

Cain and Abel: A Tale of two Brothers

Noah: How to Build a Ship

Moses: Fire Starter

Joseph: The Ultimate Betrayal

Solomon: A Man for all Seasons

David: The King’s Dilemma

Esther: The Favored Queen

John the Baptist: The Itinerant Preacher

Paul: The Menaced Missionary

Mother Mary: Ordinary Life: Extraordinary Woman

The sins range from betrayal to deception, murder and polygamy. Yet, this crowd of chosen ones of God had some important connections.

The inspiration of God was their livelihood, their driving force for good, the reason they were born. In the midst of a burning bush, pre-meditated death and the beheading of the forerunner to Christ, God was there. God showed up. God was in control.

Life for these elect was the fulfillment of Biblical history; preserving the lineage of Christ.

It just doesn’t get any better than that. No Hollywood movie could write a script comparable to the flood of all centuries or the richest and wisest man who ever lived.

My perception of these Biblical Kings, Queens and ship builder were set as examples for us.

Hard as that is to grasp, I find myself in many of their travels, dreams or a lover of all 2 and  4 legged creatures.

I can see myself on the ark with all those animals. Wonder if Noah had any Lysol?

Moses has always intrigued me. I relate to him as he told God he would not be a good deliverer. No desire here to deliver anything or anyone, but understand his position of
“Not me Lord, pick someone else.”

Esther was wise. Handpicked by God to become Queen to save the Jewish people, she still felt uneasy about her purpose. Who wouldn’t? Women were not respected. Sound familiar?

God instructed Joseph as a young man in a dream that one day his brothers would bow down to him. That went over well. Joseph knew God’s plan but did he know the suffering he would endure before it came to pass?

Joseph suffered heartbreaking betrayal at the hands of many who simply misunderstood him. He was sold, became a slave prisoner, was accused of adultery and subjected to vile and wicked treatment.

He never gave up. He stood with God and his promise for him. Ultimately his loyalty paid off placing him in the position of the 2nd most powerful man in Egypt.

God saw the whole picture. Joseph was the key to saving the lineage of Abraham.

Deuteronomy 28:9, 10 “The Lord will establish you as his holy people, as he promised you on oath, if you keep the commands of the Lord your God and walk in obedience to him. 10 Then all the peoples on earth will see that you are called by the name of the Lord, and they will fear you.”

The lesson learned here is to wait on God to teach us how to conquer.

The force of intimidation is widespread today. These men and women of God learned over time demoralizing a bully requires only a slingshot.

God’s plan doesn’t change. As we walk with him, the coercion of those who desire to thwart our journey is stopped dead in their tracks. The appeal we display is a mighty contending warrior for Christ even in silence.

The badgered hounds of society are no match for the Holy Spirit. The Bible says,

Luke 21:15 “For I will give you words and wisdom that none of your adversaries will be able to resist or contradict.”

In other words, your Philistines won’t know what really hit them.

http://theriverministries.net/2012/05/22/the-apostle-paul-part-1/

http://highlyfavored74.wordpress.com/2012/05/21/who-is-the-holy-spirit/

http://goldenbible.wordpress.com/2012/05/19/looking-to-christ/

http://highlyfavored74.wordpress.com/2012/05/22/serve-notice-to-satan-%e2%99%a5/

http://goldenbible.wordpress.com/2012/05/21/discipline/

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The Balancing Act of God


Ever feel like you are trapped in your own mistakes? Or life’s general coalition of adversity? What about that anonymous thing that hit you when you least expected it?

Given the state of mayhem surrounding us no matter what that may include, you are not forgotten. You are not alone. You can be free if you will allow God to show you how.

Cover of "The Final Inquiry"

Cover of The Final Inquiry

A Christian movie called “The Final Inquiry” is based upon a Roman soldier who falls in love with an Israeli woman. Against all reasoning and culture barriers he fights for her life as she lay dying.  The Roman soldier, known as Tito Valerio Tauro, has a slave named Brixos played by Dolph Lundgren.

Tauro and Brixos were friends more than Master and slave. Tauro had treated him well over the years and Brixos being the strong support that he was protected his master at all costs.

The moment came as the two are alone in the desert, Tauro looks intently towards Brixos with a caring smile and informs him,

“ Brixos, The documents are complete and registered with the legal counsel. You are now a free man.”

Brixos  gazes back at him, smiling and replies calmly,

“Master, I have always been a free man.”

His love and loyalty to his master paid off. His long term devotion gave him his best friend. He never viewed his slavery as a prison but a positive culmination of who he was, and how he perceived himself in any given situation.

Another rather famous slave was Joseph. Talk about a guy who got up one morning on the wrong side of bed.

In an instant he became a slave, a lost child, forgotten but not forgotten. Transported by betrayal of his brothers, he ended up in the prisons of Egypt.

But Joseph knew his God with an unwavering allegiance giving him confidence and assurance God had a plan.

As I see it, Joseph never adopted slavery as his vocation or a life sentence. Imprisonment became his stepping stone to fame and fortune but never his petition.

If anyone lived years of imprisonment, it was his brothers. Doomed by their own betrayal of Joseph, the colossal  lie remained a habitual threat in their unhinged mental state.

Joseph maintained a balancing act of God. His freedom while enslaved depended on his understanding of God and his purposes.

Joseph obeyed the authority he was imprisoned by but God was always first in his life. As a result, God showered favor upon him  like “living water”  in a desert. Respected by all, Joseph became a quiet force to be reckoned with.

The balancing act requires faith, obedience, endurance, and patience.

Most, I would say acquire it as many lessons learned. Compile these components in a neat little area of your heart and allow your mind to reset itself. The Holy Spirit is a balancing pro mixing it all together.

1 Corinthians 10:13 “No temptation has overtaken you except what is common to mankind. And God is faithful; he will not let you be tempted beyond what you can bear. But when you are tempted,he will also provide a way out so that you can endure it.”

Prisons we create for ourselves or those forced upon us are no match for the miracle work of Jesus.

A Holy Spirit, heart set freedom only shows up as we balance life’s difficulties and hardships with greater answers God has waiting for us. It doesn’t matter what it is, God has a way out, a solution or a path acknowledging the light at the end of the tunnel. Experience has taught me this formula produces blessings that far outweigh our pain.

Once I found these golden nuggets of wisdom was the moment I understood,

Master I have always been a free woman.”

http://mrkstevenson.wordpress.com/2012/04/14/dwell-in-me-and-i-will-dwell-in-you/

http://rebecaurora.wordpress.com/2012/04/14/14/

http://jesuscarriesme.com/2012/04/14/humility-is-the-power-to-restrain-your-power/

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