- Facebook/Twitter/Instagram are not worthy of more than a little of my time.
- Always bless those who persecute & don’t curse (lash back at) them in response. (Romans 12:14).
- Sharing compulsively via social media is a huge enemy of prayer.
- Speaking/writing remains absolutely essential. (Jeremiah 20:9).
- Expect misunderstanding and judgment especially from nominal, lukewarm, denominationally-blinkered Christians. (John 15:18-19).
- Love will always seem harsh & unloving to some.
- Don’t throw your pearls to pigs or feel like you need to explain yourself to those unsettled by what God is doing in your life. Pigs sometimes wallow in the Church too.
- Fear of man is a snare as much in the Church as it is on the streets (Proverbs 29:25).
- Read more, especially complex texts first thing in the morning and devotional material last thing at night.
- Divine Pathos explains everything.
- The Holy Spirit doesn’t care about my popularity or CV.
- Persistent emphases of my heart over decades are the fingerprints of the One who made me.
- Relational peace isn’t always possible – Jesus didn’t come to make us all best friends or even friends at all.
- Some people see things radically different from me. That doesn’t make them bad people but it does limit relational proximity.
- At no point in eternity will I ever feel like I was too intense about the second coming of Christ.
For those of you who follow my material, you may be interested to know that I’ve been working on a new manuscript due for completion at the end of January 2019. Check in on the blog for updates into February 2019.
They talk about being “so heavenly minded to be of no earthly use”. I’d like to smash this myth…
…the inference of this statement is that thinking outside the supernatural order and realm of things has a limited shelf life (a little is OK but a lot isn’t) but this isn’t quite the point:
Even if one person thought about heaven (say) for 1% of their life, another thought about it for 10% and another 100%, the only real issue of concern is how that person lives as a result of their heavenly-mindedness, not the heavenly-mindedness per se.
Applying heavenly-mindedness is the real challenge not thinking of heaven less. We must close the gap between what we say we believe and how we live.
The Apostle Paul said, “For to me to live is Christ and to die is gain”. (Philippians 1:21). His heavenly-mindedness was so pervasive that he actually would have preferred to die (and be Christ) than remain in the body (without Him). But his extreme heavenly-mindedness also included the mentality of how to best apply this preference…ie in this case to remain with the Philippian church for their “progress in the faith” (Philippians 1:25).
I don’t know about you but, by the grace of God, I will be more heavenly minded into 2019 than I have ever been…
“Forgive me for being so ordinary while claiming to know so extraordinary a God”
~ Jim Elliot
THE LION, THE WITCH AND THE WARDROBE
~ Excerpt from Chapter 11: “Aslan is Nearer”
“Now they were steadily racing on again. And soon Edmund noticed that the snow which splashed against them as they rushed through it was much wetter than it had been all last night. At the same time he noticed that he was feeling much less cold. It was also becoming foggy. In fact every minute it grew foggier and warmer. And the sledge was not running nearly as well as it had been running up till now. At first he thought this was because the reindeer were tired, but soon he saw that that couldn’t be the real reason. The sledge jerked, and skidded and kept on jolting as if it had struck against stones. And however the dwarf whipped the poor reindeer the sledge went slower and slower. There also seemed to be a curious noise all round them, but the noise of their driving and jolting and the dwarf’s shouting at the reindeer prevented Edmund from hearing what it was, until suddenly the sledge stuck so fast that it wouldn’t go on at all. When that happened there was a moment’s silence. And in that silence Edmund could at last listen to the other noise properly. A strange, sweet, rustling, chattering noise – and yet not so strange, for he’d heard it before – if only he could remember where! Then all at once he did remember. It was the noise of running water. All round them though out of sight, there were streams, chattering, murmuring, bubbling, splashing and even (in the distance) roaring. And his heart gave a great leap (though he hardly knew why) when he realised that the frost was over. And much nearer there was a drip-drip-drip from the branches of all the trees. And then, as he looked at one tree he saw a great load of snow slide off it and for the first time since he had entered Narnia he saw the dark green of a fir tree.”
We feel like it’s a good thing to honestly review Christian lifestyle. It shouldn’t be an offence to us to do that or to suggest that others do as well. (more…)
Jack is a young lad who goes to the same gym as us – I guess he must be in his very early twenties – and, very unusually for any bloke in the gym, recently opened up to me while we were stood recovering together next to the leg extension machine.
I’d asked him, “how you doing?” and, rather than giving an off-the-shelf response conveying that nothing in life was even remotely problematic or worrisome, he responded by saying, “I’m doing a bit better now, thanks…”.
What’s going on here then, I wondered. (more…)
The Urgent Call to “Go”
“Blessed are those who are persecuted for righteousness’ sake, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven. “Blessed are you when they revile and persecute you, and say all kinds of evil against you falsely for My sake. Rejoice and be exceedingly glad, for great is your reward in heaven, for so they persecuted the prophets who were before you. You are the salt of the earth; but if the salt loses its flavour, how shall it be seasoned? It is then good for nothing but to be thrown out and trampled underfoot by men.” Matt 5:10-13
I have been in love with Jesus just over fourteen years. I still vividly remember the day that I finally stopped running from God, repented of my sin and received Jesus as my Lord and Saviour. Everything changed in an instant. The Holy Spirit flooded my soul with the most glorious love, joy, peace and ecstasy. Words are utterly inadequate to describe what took place then and the loving Presence which continues to follow and fill my life to this day. I will say I knew that heaven and hell were real, that death had lost its sting, that I would spend eternity with my heavenly Father and that, well, EVERYONE needed to know about the reality of this crucified and resurrected Jesus Christ. So I started getting out there in the sea of humanity, going after the lost, opening my mouth and telling people about Jesus. The rest has been salty, bewildering and exciting history! (more…)