Archive for the ‘Do Something!’ Category

Full Dark

Gone is my Facebook account.  Dang, I miss it!  Thought giving that up was enough.  Really did…

Nope.

It was just the beginning – call it God’s economy.

When He wants it all, He really wants it ALL.

Challenged by my pastor, my friend Bobby who sticks closer than a brother, and an unrelenting pursuit by the Holy Spirit, I surrender.  I give up God…

Against my flesh, but in obedience to Him ,I’m going “full dark” – joining my deactivated Facebook will be Twitter and my blog.  Ouch, even hard to write.

But right now, in this season of my journey, He wants all of me.  He wants my focus, my attention, my love.  He wants that 2 hours a day that I have devoted to my blog for over 3 years now. He wants the Twitter Litter too (thanks Bobby).  I sense He has prepared for me a focused message, and it’s ready for delivery…a message that’s playing out in and thru my life right now, in real time.  I’m to capture this message in written form for some other purpose.  And to do so, I must remove the noise, even the good noise.

So call it a break from the online world.  I hope to be back…I want to be back….I dont want to leave!  But if I really mean “more of Him and less of me”……yea…it really is all about obedience – following the strange instructions of the Holy Spirit.

To those of you who were kind enough to stop by this little blog, thank you for your constant words of love and encouragement.  You blessed me.  For those interested, I hope to personally update you on my journey.

So, perhaps without this little almost daily diversion, a new season of sharing and receiving His love awaits…for you too.

Confession – I Don’t Hunger for God…

I don’t.

How can I when I overstuff myself with the things of this world?  If I were brutally honest with myself, I would see that I overindulge in the temporal and nibble on the things of God.

Is it any wonder I’m never satisfied?

If you dont feel strong desires for the manifeistation of the glory of God, it’s because you have nibbled for so long at the table of the world, your soul is stuffed with small things and there is no room for the great. God did not create you for this. There is an appetite for God and it can be awakened. I invite you to turn from the dulling effects of food and the dangers of idolatry and to say with some simple fast, THIS much oh God  I want you. – John Piper

Take a trip with me – no, its not the beach.  Well, its kinda like the beach, but no water.  We’re going to the  Mojave Desert.  Don’t pack a thing.  Just us.  For two full days we’re sitting in the dead center of the desert.  No shade, not even a blanket to sit on – go ahead, just flop down on the sand.  Lean back on your hands.  Get comfy – we’re going to be here a while.  Feel the heat?  Wow, bright.  No, I didn’t bring any water either.  Remember, just us, nothing else….nothing else but us and God.  Talk to Him, not me.  You’re mad at me anyway for getting you into this oven of a nightmare.  24 hours later, nothing has changed,  well, other than our cracking chapped lips, incredibly parched mouths, and an overwhelming hunger.  Sun’s at high noon.  Not a cloud in the sky.  Still just us… and God, and a paralyzing thirst.

Would you trade this God time for a gallon of water right now?  Ice cold water?  I’m afraid I would…I would trade God for my need.  Ouch.  God forgive me.

I don’t have a longing for God because I have filled up on so many other things.  My soul craves something – there is an emptiness.  But this emptiness can be filled with other stuff. If I would just deny my worldly nibbles, I would find that there is this hunger for God than can be awakened. My appetite for God could actually grow.

It’s time for a major shift.  When I read the following chapter, something within my soul awakened.  Thats it!  Thats whats missing from my faith journey.

Psalm 63

1 – God—you’re my God! I can’t get enough of you!
I’ve worked up such hunger and thirst for God,
traveling across dry and weary deserts.
2-4 So here I am in the place of worship, eyes open,
drinking in your strength and glory.
In your generous love I am really living at last!
My lips brim praises like fountains.
I bless you every time I take a breath;
My arms wave like banners of praise to you.

Somehow I must get to the point in my life were I’d rather have God in the desert than a gallon of cool water. How can I be in the dessert for 2 days and long for God more than water?

For me, it’s a 2 step process:

1 – Eliminate the things of this world that I am feasting on, things that feed my selfish desires, things that I have made an idol.  I just asked the Holy Spirit and He was faithful to show me 5 immediate things.  Ask Him yourself.

The removal of these idols will create a new hunger.

2- Satisfy this new hunger with the things of God – His word, prayer, fasting, ministering His love, being obedient to His calling in our lives.

More of Him….less of me….equals an eternal satisfaction.

Chapstick?

Farmer List

When I grow up I want to be a farmer!

Thats what I used to think, sexy, I know. Thank you Chris Brogan for your Farmer post and Fred for your metaphor – both inspired me…

I have just awakened to the truth that I am a farmer.  Took a walk outside to survey my garden, and after years of neglect things were a mess.  And I was reaping the intensifying consequences of my passivity.

Garden = all that I am responsible for and to.

Chris wrote “Farmers are fairly no-nonsense types. They wake up, get breakfast, and do their chores. They live by the season, worry about the yield, and think in reasonably conservative terms about what’s going to work for them.

Your Farmer List

By “farmer list,” let’s call this the chores you’ve gotta do every day. They’ll be different for everyone, but let’s lay out some starters to get you thinking. Then, the real opportunity will be for you to lay out your own farmer list, inspired by what this one makes you think.”

Here is my Farmer’s List:

Daily Chores

  • Spend intentional time in the Word of God.  It is alive.
  • Pray – 20% talking to God, 80% listening.
  • Get my blog post up. Make it spiritually helpful, worthy of comments, and unique.
  • Comment back to people who’ve commented on my blog/tweets.
  • Intentionally map out today’s touch points in the lives of those closest to me. I know how they receive and need to be loved.  It’s up to me to sow…daily!
  • Send 2 encouraging texts to those God gives me for today.
  • Connect with five people not in my vertical.
  • Reconnect with people who matter. Drop an email or call. Don’t ask for anything.
  • Look at the map of where I think things are going for my business. Anything change?
  • Think about what seeds I might plant for future projects.
  • Share at the farmer’s market my best yields.

It’s work.  Hard work. But not optional…

What goes on YOUR farmer’s list?

The Gift of Your Need

I am not accustomed to being needy.

I don’t like it…makes me feel weird…uncomfortable.

So much so that I would rather ignore my own internal warnings than admit my need – a recipe for personal disaster, trust me.

My need is someone else’s blessing of love, purpose, and obedience.

Love God, love others…right?

Love others, especially when they need love the most…in their greatest time of need.

By me withholding my need, others can not love me.  Shame on me.

Struggling to admit your need?  Check your pride – it was my biggest obstacle.

I am still working through my season of need.  God has me here for a reason, probably lots of reasons. I sometimes feel like The Coach has pulled me from the game and has me sitting on the bench next to Him, and I gotta be ok with that.  Sure, I wonder if He will ever put me back in the game.  I get antsy sitting.  But our seasons of need are just that, seasons.

But then last night I got a text – “I sure could use a friend right now, would you come find me?”

He had a need.  He was hurting. I went. I found him. We hung out for hours.

Am I back in the game? Nooo.  This morning I sense The Coach calling me back to the bench, to the seat right next to Him.  But I treasured that brief “playing time” last night.

And my friend has no idea what a gift his need was to me.

It’s No Sin to Hurt

David_Ford_black_and_white

I am hurting.

Perhaps you are too.  I know others around us are…

And the sad part is sometimes, in the midst of our greatest pain, those within our circles pull away.  Oh, it’s not always intentional, though I believe mostly it is.

We all go through seasons of life where God chooses to allow pain to draw us closer to Him. And emotional pain deserves compassion, not condemnation.  It’s no sin to hurt. But we as “Christians” love to shoot our wounded.

Christ followers, as God intended, provides supportive hands, wise minds, and loving hearts to help those who are hurting and in need. The driving force and the solid foundation is Jesus Christ, who loves you and me dearly and without conditions. Even if some people have pulled away from you, help is still available.

Today lets choose to keep our focus on Christ instead of on our problems, or else we will sink just as surely as Peter sank when he walked on the water to Jesus.

You remember the story in the Bible, Peter was on a boat one ugly stormy night, and he looked up and saw Jesus walking on the raging sea. Jesus asked Peter to come to Him. At first Peter jumped up with joyful assurance and started across the water to Jesus. Then he became afraid, focusing on his inadequacies instead of on Christ’s sufficiency.  When he saw the wind, he was afraid and, beginning to sink, cried out, ‘Lord, save me!’  “Immediately Jesus reached out his hand and caught him. ‘You of little faith,’ he said, ‘why did you doubt?’ And when they climbed into the boat, the wind died down” (Matthew 14:30-32).

Lord, give me the courage to seek help from those that love you, and to keep my focus on You and not me. Grant me the faith to persevere.

Find someone who loves Jesus, and they will love you too.

**** just found one, thanks my friend.

 

The Perfect Hiding Place

Eccl 12:12 – …much study is wearisome to the flesh.

Never fails, my most richest moments with my Creator often follow fun.

Case in point – tonight a 10 pm game of Sardines (think Hide and Seek) in an unfamiliar 3 story condo with 20 teens.  Pitch black (other than the glow from my mistimed iPhone Tweet), not a sound, even breath holding to preserve the perfect hiding place.

Note to self, do not let Joe Sanchez use restroom in the middle of game again without first confirming that no one is hiding under the sink.

As adults, why don’t we play more?

Study, study, work, work.  Good and necessary. But even the author of Ecclesiastes understood the Biblical principal of play.  We were designed for fun, ahhhh but life often does its thing.

Game over. Teens still laughing about the scares and misses.  And something feels right inside of me.  A nod to God, and I feel His smile too. I sense Him confirming what I tend to forget.  Step away from “life”. Set your self apart from your routine. Laugh, be silly, play Hide and Seek.

Find YOUR perfect hiding place.  Just be sure the cabinets are clear if you have to gooooo……

10 Things A Leader Must Do

Over a pipping hot mug of Hazelnut coffee and a perfectly toasted slice of whole wheat bread with a thin layer of peanut butter and a not so thin layer of honey….

Are you a leader?

It’s time to stop asking that silly question.  As a Christ-follower, we are all leaders.  And like it or not, leaders have responsibilities.  Check out what John Maxwell has to say about you:

10 things you should do as a leader prior to reaching age 40:

1. Know yourself
2. Settle your family life
3. Determine your priorities
4. Develop your philosophy of life
5. Get physically fit
6. Learn your trade
7. Pay the price
8. Develop solid relationships
9. Prepare for the future
10. Find purpose for your life

Over 40?  It’s not too late – it’ll just take a little more effort.  You have a calling on your life.  It’s time for you to answer it….

“Most people spend more time planning their grocery shopping than designing their future.”
– Tom James, Personal Development Coach