Courage Needed – Heads Up In The Darkness

Way Truth LifeCourage

It is required now and in the days ahead. Light in Christ flowing through our lives into the intense darkness all around us. This requires courage and conviction to rise up in Kingdom Reality.

To KNOW that we are in Christ and He has overcome death and the grave.

To BE Christ in the darkness knowing that He who is in us is greater than he who is in the world.

To MOVE in Him with intentionality and purpose, not shirking back in fear.

Wherever there is darkness, the smallest bit of light will overcome it. Truth brings light into the darkness. Do we know this deep within us? Or do we adapt to the shifting shadows in the hope that no confrontation or challenge will come our way? The days ahead will challenge our beliefs on many different levels and this will require courage on our part to rise above the chaos.

The simplest things will provoke provocation and anger in those around us.

To stand up in the reality that Jesus Himself said:

Jesus said to him, “I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through Me. John 14:6

This is a radical statement, and one that will be contested on every side. Many will proclaim our arrogance in even saying it. Many will say that we are outrageously presumptuous to even think it. Yet, the fact remains……Jesus said it and it is truth.

Living it out. Walking it out. We fear neither death nor shirk from life itself. Life moves us out in courage and boldness. We know that we ARE seated in heavenly places. We ARE hidden in Christ. He has overcome death and the grave. That makes us courageous.

And this is eternal life, that they may know You, the only true God, and Jesus Christ whom You have sent. John 17:3

To know Him – that sets a path in the darkness. No need to fear. No need to worry. There is a light there as we walk in faith. His glory is increasing throughout the earth.

For your light has come! And the glory of the Lord is risen upon you. For behold, the darkness shall cover the earth, and deep darkness the people; but the Lord will arise over you, and His glory will be seen upon you………..Is. 60:1-2

Wherever you are today, rise up in the knowing that He is Lord. Be still and know this to navigate the waters of persecution or mockery you may be facing. Be still and know this to go through times of chaos that challenges your faith, hoping to pull you under or knock you out of the race. Be still and know He is Lord. It’s about to get real folks!

Debra And Chloe

Living in Passion and Purpose In Christ,
Debra

About Me
Rivers of Eden Ministry
Contact Me

Truth Knocks Us Off Our High Horse

img_7240Bam! A blinding light shines down. One “soon to be apostle” flies off his horse and hits the dirt.

As he journeyed he came near Damascus, and suddenly a light shone around him from heaven. Then he fell to the ground, and heard a voice saying to him, “Saul, Saul, why are you persecuting Me?” And he said, “Who are You, Lord?” Then the Lord said, “I am Jesus, whom you are persecuting. It is hard for you to kick against the goads.” Acts 9:3-5

Saul (soon to be Paul) resisted Jesus in every way. With all his religious fervor, he believed he was the defender of the faith, even to the point of killing Christians. Finally Jesus says, “Enough is enough.” It’s a day of confrontation.

Truth knocks Saul off his high horse. For someone who believes he is a defender of the faith, it’s a bit humiliating when God wants to reveal Himself as He really is, not as we desire Him to be. He believed he knew who Jesus was but apparently he didn’t.

What about us? Does God humiliate us at times to reveal His Son as He really is? Does He knock us down off our high horses of pride or self-righteousness? Does He invade our safe spaces where we cling to a Jesus who babies and coddled our immaturity? Does He uproot our offenses and pride catapulting us to the dust?

Of course He does. If you truly seek to know Jesus Christ, honestly seek to know Him as He longs to reveal Himself to you, you will be challenged in a radical encounter with Jesus. With a blinding light, He will expose areas of our life. Leveling out in the dust, we can choose to look up into the eyes of truth or walk away.

Hand reaching up

We desperately need a blinding light revelation today. Light that hits us and even knocks us down but then raises us up in clear vision to see Christ as He truly is.

In Western Christianity, we tend to construct a Jesus that is very one-dimensional, created to BE who we want Him to BE. He is love. Don’t get me wrong. I’m not advocating an abusive heavenly Father that wants humiliate us without reason. But do we know Him? Do we know Him as He is?

Jesus called Paul to be an apostle with great destiny and purpose. He hit Paul head on, not playing nice or tolerant. Jesus loved Paul with an everlasting love. He had to do it this way. Revolutionary radical people are prime targets for God’s ferocious love to hit hard. Without encounter, many of us will not move in God’s direction. We will wallow in pride, self-righteousness without the light. We will even choose to stay in our own victimization of past hurts or abuse.

Can we accept this revelation of Christ? Is it hard to imagine that not only is He filled with grace but filled with fire? How about acceptance at the same time as confrontational, challenging us with our weakness to give us His strength?

Okay so many are saying? But that’s Paul? I’m not called to a worldwide apostolic ministry? Maybe not but Jesus will do the same thing for those called to be servants, housewives, doctors, lawyers, teachers, students, janitors, or gardeners. Each of us, in our own little corner of the world, needs a blinding light to invade our sphere of influence to wake us up in order to see and know Jesus Christ. To see Him not through the lens of religion or cultural conformity but through a revelation of Himself as we hit bottom.

All around us the church at large has deconstructed Jesus down to a nice guy, our friend, and our little created divinity called to make us feel good. He becomes our safe space. We create Him in our desire and image so that our lives need not be offended or confronted with Truth. This has created a weak, powerless church unable to walk in power and authority.

Being a strong, independent and somewhat rebellious individual, Truth hit me at the lowest point in my life when things seemed bent on destruction in multiple areas – struggling marriage and family alongside internal pain and sorrow. Truth hit hard with strong powerful love basically saying to me, “Are you done doing it your way? Why do you keep resisting and hitting back so hard?”

My marriage was on the rocks and I entered a time of depression. At that point, Truth entered my life to become my Lord and Savior with a multifaceted revelation of His love. Father. Savior. Friend. Redeemer. He revealed Himself to me soft and gentle alongside firm and strong.

But He didn’t stop there with just that confrontation. Truth confronts me all the time, even now at times knocking me off of platforms of self-righteousness and pride. Truth confronts because it’s very nature is to confront. Do you know this Jesus? The One who loves you so much that He will not leave you where you are but desires to draw you up and out of your messy life into His.

By mess, I’m not just talking about the obvious but also the hidden. Not just outward acts of addiction but inward struggles of grief, anxiety or rejection. Jesus is good, all the time. When He confronts us with a hard knock or gently surrounds us with divine love, He is good. And Father God is good. And Holy Spirit is good.

Truth knocks me down and then a good Father God picks me right back up again. He doesn’t like me to stay down, although down has its good points. Down allows me to reevaluate my life in Christ along with the humiliation of being down there for all to see. It’s actually good for me. It’s time to grow up.

In relationship with truth, we never arrive but are always on journey. He does not gloat over us in humiliation but He longs for us to give it all up to follow Him on His journey. God knows the way and like a good Father He knows what’s good for us and is relentless in showing us the right way.

Allow Truth to have His way with you. You won’t regret it. Jesus is the way, the truth, the life and no man comes to the Father except through Him.  Repent. Now that’s not a word that is politically correct, is it? But it means to change your mind and walk in another direction……with Him. Relinquish your life to Him. He is more than worth it.

Aren’t you tired of doing it your own way?

Debra

 

In Christ,
Debra

Truth is not always what the majority say is truth

CrossThe crowd cries out with vengeance in their heart. “Crucify Him!” A remnant of people look at Him, their hearts imploding with sorrow. They want to run from this insanity playing out before their eyes, but they can’t. Dedication. Adoration. Love. This keeps them in the margins, without power, yet feeling pain.

Truth dies a slow death, as a majority continues to demand vengeance. “Crucify Him!”

There He is. Their Savior. Their healer. Their deliverer. Bruised, broken and bleeding.

Truth is not always what the majority say is truth. Jesus is the perfect example. He stood in their midst, often silent, without defense or any type of provocation, no need to prove Himself. The religious condemned Him from the start just for being who He actually was, Truth Incarnate. He was in their midst, but they did not see.

Again it hits me. Truth is not always what the majority say is truth. I can be sure that when I choose to follow Truth, my eyes open to see Him as He is, to follow Him where He leads, and to know Him with eyes wide open. I can be sure that on this path, many will cry out for my own destruction if I stand against the grain of popular opinion or political correctness. To proclaim that Jesus is the way offends many who don’t want to acknowledge Him Savior or follow Him as Lord.

How do we who follow Christ respond to this vengeance? This attack against righteousness? Oh, do I hear you say that you have not experienced this? Then I would question what way you actually follow, what path do you walk, what Lord do you acknowledge.

All who follow the Lord truly follow Him into a narrow place of proclamation of His great love and mercy towards humanity will be persecuted. Narrow place? What do I mean by that? Not narrow in the sense of judgment and condemnation. Narrow in the sense of living a life contrary to the world at large. Living a life from a kingdom position sitting in heavenly places. To follow this truth will cost us everything – our lives, our reputation. Anything less than that is simply a watered down version of Christianity.

So many Christians stand in the margins, looking at Truth, grieved that it is dying in our midst, but out of a sense of being safe, secure, and comfortable, they stay hidden. But, for those who want to step out it will cost us.

Truth positions us in the crossfire of cultural insanity and political correctness. Don’t think for one minute that those who are with you now will not also cry out “Crucify Him” or “Crucify Her” tomorrow. Truth will always cost us something. It appears to me that it is often in the American church where Christianity requires nothing more than a verbal affirmation of belief while denying the power of life lived following Christ.

It’s time to come away from the margins, into the middle of the fray. To stand for Truth despite anything that would come our way. Don’t look for the majority to follow you. They won’t. Trust me. They won’t. To truly live for Christ in a deep personal relationship, you will be persecuted and looked upon as an anomaly by a majority who rule. Come out anyway. Stand for something or stand for nothing.

He says, “I am the way, the truth and the life. No man comes to the Father except through me.” He is the answer. He is the way.

To rise up in this revelation is to be revolutionary. Yet, we rise up, not in self-righteousness but willing to die so that His life lives in and through us. To live is Christ. To die is gain.

Truth set in cementTruth is not always what the majority say or what the majority want. In my opinion, we love to follow in the wake of other’s beliefs. Or, we create a god in our own image, with all the perks that come with this so as to live a life free of commitment and confrontation.

A shepherd boy named David stood for truth and because of this stood against Goliath when everyone else turned away. His own brothers doubted his character, mocking him because of his youth and lack of experience.

Now Eliab his oldest brother heard when he spoke to the men; and Eliab’s anger was aroused against David, and he said, “Why did you come down here? And with whom have you left those few sheep in the wilderness? I know your pride and the insolence of your heart, for you have come down to see the battle.” And David said, “What have I done now? Is there not a cause?” Then he turned from him toward another and said the same thing; and these people answered him as the first ones did. 1 Samuel 17:28-30

Is there not a cause? Here it is again as I look at David. Truth rises up against a majority who see life through a different lens. This is life. I can give you example after example of those who stand in truth amidst opposition and persecution. I challenge each of us to stand for Truth, Jesus Christ. We stand in humility, grace and love alongside power, passion and conviction. There is a cost to be paid. Thank God, Jesus paid it with His own life.

The world is in chaos and truth is falling, falling, falling all around us. There is a way though – a way of trust, joy, obedience, love, hope, mercy, goodness, grace……..it’s all in Christ. To follow Him is to walk in truth in this life. The majority may disdain us, abhor us, ignore us and persecute. Yet, we walk in Truth. He leads the way.

Meditate on these words of Jesus.

John 14:6 (NKJV Strong’s,) Jesus said to him, “I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through Me.

Matthew 16:24-26 (MSG) Then Jesus went to work on his disciples. “Anyone who intends to come with me has to let me lead. You’re not in the driver’s seat; I am. Don’t run from suffering; embrace it. Follow me and I’ll show you how. 25 Self-help is no help at all. Self-sacrifice is the way, my way, to finding yourself, your true self. 26 What kind of deal is it to get everything you want but lose yourself? What could you ever trade your soul for?

Debra

 

In Christ,
Debra

Make America Great? Is that possible? Truth from my heart.

CrossMake America great again – that won’t happen without God – honoring Him, obeying Him……..

Greatness in America is not dependent on politics but on the people who make up a nation who honor and obey God.

Jesus said, “Apart from Me, you can do nothing. ” Simple. Truth.

America is great only because of the greatness of God.

America is good only because of the goodness of God.

America is now a people fueled by anger, fear, confusion, lies……….within both parties.

We bring ourselves way down when our focus is on an earthly solution to a spiritual problem of the heart. Greatness or goodness in a nation is not dependent on any man saying those words. For no man can do it apart from God.

God resists the proud and grace is poured out on the humble. I don’t see that in either party right now.

Are we joining our Christianity to politics, walking hand in hand, side by side where one goes, the other follows. This is foolishness.

Jesus said that His kingdom is not of this world. As citizens of the kingdom, while living on the earth, we live in the tension of maintaining a respect for our government. Respect – not idolatry in any candidate, not pride in a party…….

The tension of living in the world while not being of the world is always there. We would be wise, though, to not walk sync our political duty with our spiritual reality.

I am not telling you how to vote. Don’t misconstrue what I am saying here. I have no business knowing how you vote and you have no business knowing how I vote. I am, however, asking you to truly look deep inside your heart…..

Christ reigns now and forever more, whether Trump is president or whether Clinton is president.

Do we understand that? I’m not sure.

Whoever wins, someone is sure to cry out, “This is the end of America as we know it.”

Can you see the foolishness in this?

This nation is divided, angry, fearful….no matter who wins. How can one man or woman solve a spiritual problem? Our hearts must turn to the Lord.

I want my heart to be focused on Jesus before I vote, to be clear before the election. That clarity is found only in Christ Jesus.

My thoughts for today because I am weary of all that is taking place. All night, I kept thinking of Isaiah 29 and its parallel to our situation in America today, seeing it through grace. I will pray and blog about this next week.

My heart cry – to see a people turn back to the Lord, not dependent on politics of religion but solely upon relationship and intimacy in Christ first.

Debra

 

In Christ,
Debra

Moving in Truth or Anchored in Opinion

TruthWe can be enslaved by opinion or moved by truth. Opinion shifts and changes hourly or even by the minute, depending on how often we open up social media or glance at the news. What’s out there, perceived as truth, is often revealed to be opinion, coated in a fine layer of distortion back up by clouded facts.

Where do we find truth? Unshakeable yet moving. Firm yet fluid. Is that possible? Doesn’t’ that seem to be somewhat of a paradox? Can you have both or is truth stoic and immoveable?

Truth is on the move! Truth calls out to each of us to move along with Him and invade territory captured by lies and distortion. Can you see it? Chaos abounds all around. We question everything and hold onto nothing, shifting our beliefs with whatever is trending or whoever seems to make a case we can hold onto. I believe that we are desperate for truth but many don’t know where to find it. They turn to every conceivable thing to alleviate their fears or calm their nerves.

All along truth calls to us within the person of Christ Jesus. Who is He? A liar? A lunatic? OR is He really who He says He is? I believe He’s truth. That forms the basis of my writing. I point the way and you choose to receive and believe or keep searching. Trust me. I kept searching and searching for many years, looking for rest and peace yet rejecting the One who offered it me. Why? He loves me.

Way Truth LifeJesus said to him, “I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through Me.’ John 14:6

Jesus and the Father are one and He longs to reveal the Father to us. He cries out, “I am the way”. He speaks unashamed and without pretense. He has the audacity to say it, because it is true. I live, move and have my being in that reality. Truth moves and I move in sync with Him.

It’s not time to batten down the hatches or hide in our personal Christian fortresses, complete with lights, camera and action on a weekly basis. Don’t hide behind closed doors afraid of the world and its opinions of what a Christian looks like, sounds like or acts like. Get out there and be truth in a world of chaos. I don’t hide waiting for the Apocalypse. Where did the apostles ever do that?

Truth shapes my life in courage. I rise and stand tall in the reality of Jesus Christ. He moves – revealing, expanding and exploding on the scene of my life to show me who He is and who the Father is. This is a grand exciting journey, moving parallel to the fear in the world but destined to overtake the darkness with the light of Christ within me.

What is truth? Let me meditate on this today according to Scripture. More in the next blog.

As I said before, please join me on this journey as I write. I am not going to settle things in one blog post but they will form a journey into the heart of Jesus Christ, the Father and Holy Spirit.

Debra

 

In Christ,
Debra