Creative Expression – Breaking It All Down!

God often speaks to me in one word or one-liners straight into my spirit. They can hit me when I least expect it or they can creep up slowly so as to infuse slowly over time into the foundation of my Christian life. The word ‘deconstruct’ has been in the slow infusion process in my life over the past month.

Deconstruct. Deconstruct. I hear it. I see it. I know it is working life in me to speak it forth as a source of encouragement and challenge. I am often a walking prophetic message carried in and through my life. In the past, I tried to ask God to do this some other way, but He doesn’t seem to hear me.

So I accept that I talk the talk only as I walk the walk. I impart to each of you that which dies and brings resurrection life in me so it can flow out to you in words of life.

Deconstruction. This is what God is doing in my life. What exactly does it mean? Let me show you first in this video. If you don’t see this video by email, just click on the link to go to the online version.

Deconstruct – selective dismantling of building components, specifically for re-use, recycling, and waste management. It differs from demolition where a site is cleared of its building by the most expedient means. It is referred to as “construction in reverse’. Deconstruction focuses on giving the materials within a building a new life once the building as a whole can no longer continue. It’s life construction, in reverse.

So, I am being broken down, torn apart, not for the sake of destruction or annihilation of who Debra is, but for the beautiful sake of reconstruction of who I am created to be in Christ. Some things just gotta go. He is tearing me down with His gentle hands of love to recreate someone greater with the life of Christ flowing through her. This verse comes to mind.

Christ’s life showed me how, and enabled me to do it. I identified myself completely with him. Indeed, I have been crucified with Christ. My ego is no longer central. It is no longer important that I appear righteous before you or have your good opinion, and I am no longer driven to impress God. Christ lives in me. The life you see me living is not “mine,” but it is lived by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me. (Galatians 2:20 Message)

There I am, laying in pieces on the ground. All my faults, my weaknesses put on display over the past years for all to see. The anger, the unresolved unforgiveness, the death of my sister, the near destruction of my marriage, ………there’s more but just a few examples will suffice for now. Right there in front of me, I see the results of a life broken beyond repair. Pieces of what could have been strewn around me. I fail to see anything that could come to greatness at this point. Who can put this all together?

There’s the deconstruction process. Bit by bit, piece by piece. Sometimes it hurt. Sometimes it lasted longer than I wanted it to last. Yet, all along, I submitted to it in various ways. Sometimes I cringed, got angry and threw things. Other times I simply resolved myself to the reality that I was a mess Better to bring it all down so that I can rise up again in His life. I used to get so tired of being me. Have you ever felt this way? Yet, things are quite nice right now, after years of deconstruction. It is tapering off a bit. Now, at this point in my life, I settle into stillness quite well, forgetting the noise of the world, coming apart to BE with Jesus Christ. In His life, I have life.

In this place of intimacy in Christ, He tears down, builds up, and deconstructs my life down to the basics. Down goes that wall of unforgiveness and anger. It serves no purpose. It is detrimental to my peace and my joy. Then bam, I am confronted with my own insecurity and down it goes, exploding quickly into pieces. I carried it for so many years, often using it as an excuse to procrastinate and withdraw from everything. Going through the house, He levels it all to bring it down to its foundation. There I am. All props gone. Presumptions flying into the distance. What’s left? Just the foundation. What exactly is that foundation? When all the props are brought down, there I stand in naked truth, barely recognizable yet so very alive. What now? Feeling so exposed and nowhere to hide. What now?

Well, it’s like this. I am being re-membered, put together oh so well to BE Debra. Bit by bit, piece by piece. What life has tried to steal, what evil has tried to destroy, God is restoring to my life in Christ. I cringe when I think that at my age I am finally finding out who I am created to be, walking in freedom and wholeness with each passing day. Why did I not get it sooner? Why now? Why the waste of time? Well, those words only show that there is always further need for some deconstruction, some tearing down. Deconstruction is a process that never goes away. I am always in the process of being remodeled and remolded for I am human in every way.

Here are some great words by CS Lewis that goes along with all of this. Enjoy!

Imagine yourself as a living house. God comes in to rebuild that house. At first, perhaps, you can understand what He is doing. He is getting the drains right and stopping the leaks in the roof and so on; you knew that those jobs needed doing and so you are not surprised. But presently He starts knocking the house about in a way that hurts abominably and does not seem to make any sense. What on earth is He up to? The explanation is that He is building quite a different house from the one you thought of – throwing out a new wing here, putting on an extra floor there, running up towers, making courtyards. You thought you were being made into a decent little cottage: but He is building a palace. He intends to come and live in it Himself. ~CS Lewis, Mere Christianity,

In Christ, Debra

Please pray and consider having Rivers of Eden minister in your gathering, home group, conference or church in 2014. This is our year of release wherever and whenever God opens His doors bringing His grace and His glory through us to those to whom we are called in this season. Feel Free to contact us on Facebook, Twitter, or on our Contact Page on our web site.

Some Great Posts To Read

A Mundane Life – That’s All It Is! Living In A Hut Series

Robots, Clones, Templates – Where Is Creativity?

Our Quirky Finland Adventure In Christ

Finland Snow

Finland Snow

I am a bit behind in the Blog Challenge for October, but I will finish well. I have been writing a lot about Creativity and about the direction our ministry, Rivers of Eden, is going in 2014. I don’t want to go deeper into my thoughts on creativity yet, because I want to focus on that in November. So for the rest of this challenge, until October 31,  I am going to write spontaneously about things I have learned while living and traveling abroad for the past 10 years.

Let’s start with Finland. My husband and I  have a residence visa there – a second home to us. It is beautiful, but not always easy to live there.  As darkness encroaches in the winter, you have to have a strong temperament not to suffer some sort of cabin fever. If you are a transplant from California, which we are, I often found myself  looking for the sun. At times, I felt paralyzed by the heavy cloud cover which seemed to press down upon my life day by day.

So people ask us many many many times “Why Finland? Why are you in Finland?” They often look at us as if we are a bit quirky ourselves to choose a nation like Finland. But, they usually do not know,  until we tell them, that we did not choose Finland. God chose Finland for us. Whoa!!! Please stay with me here. I hope I don’t lose you. Let me explain.

IMG_0408In 2002, three of us were praying in our living room and we heard God speak “Go to Helsinki.”  (Christians do hear the voice of God which can lead one on glorious adventures. This is normal Christianity and for those of you who think that is a bit strange, well, it’s true. God does speak to His people) Keep following me okay? I never wanted normal mundane Christianity and believed that if walking in the supernatural was normal in the New Testament, it is normal for me in my life. Anyway, back to the living room.

In prayer, we heard the Holy Spirit say, “Go to Helsinki.” I did not know anything about Helsinki at the time. We were excited to believe God would take us on a wonderful journey, so we continued to pray for the next three months about the trip. Were we complete crazies?  Yes and no. I mean, it was a stretch but I am a bit of an extravagant Charismatic at times. I go wholeheartedly into anything I do for God, so I just jumped in faith at this trip. Nothing deterred me, not even the funny looks we got from so many people in California when we told there we were going to Helsinki. You can’t even imagine how many Americans did not even know where Finland was in the world. Scary thought guys.

God was gracious to us, being our first time and all. He assured us over and over that this was Him speaking to us about Finland. When we were assured that this was a ‘go’, we bought our tickets and flew to Helsinki, Finland, for 2 weeks. During that time, all we did was pray, walk the streets, talk with people, and experience the nation. We got on a train from Helsinki to Oulu (almost the top of the world folks) and prayed all the way up and all the way back. I loved the adventure. Yet, prayers just shot up to God without a response is a bit boring to me. So I expected God to speak to us. He did not fail to disappoint. He talked to us in visions, dreams and revelation for our whole trip. I was hooked. Finland became a part of my life, and still is. What next?

Snow Forest FinlandThrough a series of events over the past 11 years, too numerous to mention here, Marvin and I took one step at a time. Doors opened, doors shut. We rented a total of three different apartments. We obtained our Finnish ID number. They placed us in the system with healthcare. And here we stand today – called to this nation, loving this nation, and looking with great excitement to what the future holds. (I have traveled throughout a lot of the world and have many stories of God taking us into places to pray and meet people. More will be coming.)

Walking in the SnowAnyway, after years of ups and downs, learning and making mistakes, I know that when God puts a nation on your heart, you love the nation and its people no matter what they do to you, think of you or say about you. So I am heading back in one week to spend time in prayer with our small team for Rivers of Eden to figure out our next step in Finland. This past year has been spent in California but God has always promised us we would live in both places. Good stuff, guys. The face of the church is changing and I don’t want the same old boring stuff, churchy stuff, religious stuff. I want the creative out of the box stuff that fills me with passion. So off we go. It looks to be a good year. God’s in it all the way. It is a shift, a dramatic shift for us, incorporating our travels ministry and out of the box Christianity. But, I have been trained all these years for this. It’s time to walk.

A Circular Flow – Creativity in Christ

quotes-on-adventure-2I preached a message once about Circular Christianity”. Perhaps I will blog about it in the future but for now, I will give you a one paragraph shortened version of it all. Jesus did not live life according to a linear reality such as a timeline. He allowed people and situations to impact His life along His journey. He knew that He came from the Father and was going back to the Father (Circular Rhythm). In this way of life, He stopped, led by the Holy Spirit, for anything that intersected with His life. He moved circularly if you get my picture visually. He lived creatively to the sound of heaven. So He valued the day-to-day, led by the Spirit. His life was full and quite busy, yet He moved in rest.

We, on the other hand, are driven and always complaining about having so little time. Our timelines go forward in time, with key moments that intersect our life – birth, marriage, babies, jobs, travel, and death. Sometimes, between birth and death, we really don’t actually live because we are driven from point to point. Why not allow the creativity of the Holy Spirit to impact your life? This may sound ridiculous if you are driven to achieve and work for hours on end each week, but quantity is not what I am talking about here but quality of life.

Look at Jesus briefly with me right now. He lived a life, moving in the Spirit, with a flow that was sourced in peace and rest. Can I say the same? In a way I can because I do live my life like this now, but I did not do this always. Jesus moved circularly. Meditate on this a bit. He knew where He came from and where He was going back to and everything in between had purpose because His focus was on an eternal purpose moving through His life in the earthly realm. That is life, abundant and full.

jesus_center-448x220John 4 – Jesus and the woman at the well. He stopped. Against all cultural constraints, He stopped and her life was changed forever more. Speaking prophetically over her life, He brought forth revelation that challenged the darkness in her life with the light of the Living Word.

John 9:6 – Jesus spit on the ground, made clay with His Saliva and anointed a blind man’s eyes. The man received his sight through this creative act. Jesus heard the Father give Him a creative revelation. This changed the man forever and the people observing this miracle.

Matthew 19:13 – Jesus calls the children to lay hands on them for prayer. Children love the circular moments of life. Have you noticed that they stop for the most obscure things that capture their attention? The disciples rebuked Jesus for this. Go figure right? Should not be a surprise. They lived linearly and were only worried about earthly cares and concerns.

Jesus chose 12 diverse, unique men from various backgrounds.  What more can be said about this right? Look at the church. Look carefully. The church honors uniformity and conformity. Jesus challenged this with diversity and creativity.

There is much more to say on this and so many examples. The rest is for you to explore as you pray. Jesus will reveal truth to you right where you are in life. So why am I writing on this? It is because I am a creative thinker, a spontaneous believer, and a woman who loves adventure. I know there are more like me out there. What to do? I refuse to accept man-made Christianity. I surrender to the flow of the Holy Spirit in my life. I listen to the sound of heaven, only doing what I hear the Father saying to me. It is not only possible. It is the only way to live.