I love this song.  It so lifts Jesus up.  I believe worship isnt about how we feel or how it makes us feel but its about honouring Jesus and declaring who He is and giving the glory and worship that He is worthy.  We worship because He is worthy.  

When we worship Him something happens.  It happens inside us and it happens to the world around us.   Worship reminds our heart of the truth of how good and great God is, that nothing is impossible for Him.  It helps us to fix our eyes upon Him and remember His promises.

There is no other name but Jesus.  No name with such power.  No name that can bring such transformation or salvation.

 

today, what promise do you need to remember?

 

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The first time I heard God speak I was about 4 minutes old as a Christian.  I had just got saved, in a shearing shed, and had gone back to my seat.  I was all of a sudden filled with a warmth and a peace that i had never felt before.  I felt God speak to me.  It was amazing.  and i was 4 minutes old, brand new.

 

But it’s also a learning process.  We practice hearing His voice and recognising what He is saying and what He is leading us to do.  Sometimes its not as easy and clear cut as it sounds like it should be, sometimes we can be distracted by our emotions and circumstances.

Each of us needs to learn from personal experience what it means to hear God given our unique background, personality, and life situation. They way that you hear God is likely to be somewhat different from how I hear God.   But the beautiful amazing thing is that God speaks to us.

The God that created the universe, breathed the stars out, is eternal and unshakable, all powerful and glorious – that He speaks to us, that He is near and personal, interested in our lives and doing life with us.

 

How did Hosea know he was to marry a prostitute?

How did Isaiah know he was to be a naked prophet – for three whole naked cold years?

How did Paul face the storm and shipwreck without fear?

How did Joshua know the walls would fall down?

How did Elijah know to go to zarapeth?

These are all out there examples of people who did radical out there things when they heard from God.

Read the rest of this entry »

 

Revelation 1:8 says “I am the Alpha and the Omega,” says the Lord God, “who is, and who was, and who is to come, the Almighty.”

Often we get that God is in the past doing amazing things. We have a whole book that is a record of God’s power and might. And we know that in the future – in eternity – in heaven – God will be mighty and amazing and we’ll we so blown away when we see Him. But now. The IS. Often in the IS we forget that Jesus is the same yesterday, tomorrow and today.

Now.

Here.

Today.

Lazarus’ IS, his reality, his now, was that Lazarus is dead.

What does your IS say today?

Even in your IS God is God. He is not just the God of yesterday or the God of tomorrow but He is God today!

And do you want to know the most amazing thing about Lazarus’ IS?

In his IS he heard the voice of Jesus calling him, by name, to come out.

Lazarus heard Jesus calling his name.

In case I need to spell it out or you haven’t connected the dots. Lazarus is dead. He was dead and he heard God speaking.

Those things in your life that are dead and impossible – God can speak life to them – He can call you out of them. He sees you in those moments.

Jesus calls out to those dead places of our lives, our dead hopes, our dead dreams, our dead relationship circumstances and says “come out”

No matter what your NOW is.

No matter what your TODAY looks like.

No matter how bad your IS is.

No matter how dead you feel, no matter how big your obstacle is – jesus is the resurrection and the life

I am the resurrection and the life ~ jesus.

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“The point of your life is to point to Him. Whatever you are doing, God wants to be glorified, because this whole thing is His. It is His movie, His world, His gift.”  — Francis Chan

 

Sometimes God is doing something in your life for others to see.  Your life is part of a greater story that He is weaving, a bigger picture.  Sometimes the things that are happening in our life are not just for our own living and experience but for those around us.  God uses our lives to demonstrate His reality and grace.  

We are called to know Him and make Him known.

Jesus said to his disciples Lazarus is dead and for your sake I am glad so that you may believe.

At the tomb entrance Jesus prayed I have said this for the benefit of the people standing here, so that they may believe you sent me””

In the prison where Paul and Silas were chained and singing – the other prisoners were listening.  Paul and Silas’ captivity just wasnt about them but it was part of the bigger picture.

 

So what does this say about God?

It says that God is at work in all circumstances of my life. It says that He knows that is going on and that He is the master author of the story of my life. He is big enough to know all the plot twists.

 

Isaiah 55 says For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways,” declares the Lord. “As the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways.

 

God is good. All the time. We say that, almost as a catch phrase. Nike, just do it. 30 seconds spray and walk away. Bazinga. May the force be with you. God is good. All the time.

But it’s not just a catch phrase. There is a reality there that sometimes we dismiss. Sometimes our heart says God is good when life is good. Full stop.  We dont allow the phrase to stretch over into other, more painful areas, of our life.

I was reading in Job the other night – and we know Job’s catch phrase – Though he slay me, I will trust Him” (job 13:15) – and in job 1 I was blown away again by Job’s response and real life action w hen he heard his sheep were dead, his camels were dead, his kids were dead etc

At this, Job got up and tore his robe and shaved his head. Then he fell to the ground in worship 21 and said:

‘Naked I came from my mother’s womb,
    and naked I shall depart.[c]
The Lord gave and the Lord has taken away;
    may the name of the Lord be praised.’

We often colour God with the same crayolas humanity are coloured in. People have bad intentions. People have grumpy pmt days. People mess with ya. People vomit their own negative emotions over you. Their motivations are squewed and they’re living for number one.

But God is good, all the time. He doesn’t have bad intentions. He doesn’t have bad hair days. His motivations are correct. He isn’t messing with your life. Everything He does is filled with goodness. Everything He does comes from a heart of goodness. Everything He does is right. God does nothing by accident. He is an on purpose God.

 

 

What does this say about me?

“You’re either going to live your life defined by what you go through or by Who you belong to.” @Stevenfurtick

 

Jesus said in this life you WILL have trouble, but trouble does not need to define you or discourage you. You can rise because Jesus is risen. You can have hope because God is faithful to His promises. You can be joyous because God is at work. You can have peace because God gives peace despite what is going on around us.

My choice is to say YES to God and to believe. 

Those dark days may be the most richest, character forming, life changing of your life. They certainly were for Lazarus, for his sisters, for his community, for the disciples.

Jesus did something remarkable through Lazarus’ life and death that was on centre stage for everyone to see.  Lazarus’ death and then resurrection were for all to see.  They were part of a greater story that God was weaving.

 

What is God doing in your life? What does He want to demonstrate to the world around you? What is the big picture?

Passionate people…

pursue God

worship

pray

take daring steps of faith

humble themselves

walk with people in life

learn

know their Word

are filled with the Holy Spirit

serve

lead

 

 

what would you add to the list?

Therapists and others who study human behaviour will tell you there’s only one difference between those who succeed and those who don’t. “It’s all about their habits,” they say. 

 

1. They reveal what you value least—and most.

2. They reveal where you spend your time.

3. They reveal the state of your mental health.

4. They reveal the state of your spiritual health.

5. They reveal the state of your physical health.

 

1. They reveal what you value least—and most.

Tell me your dreams and then show me your calendar.

Tell me what’s most important in your life and then show me how that is really actioned in your life.

A habit as simple as arriving late or constantly procrastinating can show what you rank at the bottom of your scale of priorities—and also what you rank at the top. What do you hold as important and unimportant in this life? Just take a look at your habits. They will speak for themselves—and most likely, they will speak to others as well.

If you have a habit of working hard, helping others or always being on time to work, it shows that you see a great deal of value in your future, your character and your work ethic. Likewise, if you are always late, interrupt times with friends because you always answer your phone or commit initially only to back out late, it will be clear to the people around you what comes first in your life—and what doesn’t.  It destroys credibility.  It empties the relational bank account and creates distrust.  Trust is such a great lubricant for promotion and opportunity – without trust the opportunities and promotions pass by us and restrict us to a lower level of adventure and experience.  Good habits foster good relationships and a healthy relational bank account.  They demonstrate personal integrity and capability and contribute to a proven track record of faithfulness.

Small things have a larger role in who we are and who we are becoming.  They create a big picture view of who we are.  We may consider some habits as inconsequential but they have an impact in creating credibility with people which in turn has an impact on where we are heading in life.  

Habits can hinder us, or they can be shining stars in the way we live our life publicly and privately.

“Motivation is what gets you started. Habit is what keeps you going.”  Jim Ryun

 

2. They reveal where you spend your time.

Habits don’t just happen overnight. If a habit takes 30 days to form, then those 30 days will tell you a lot about your commitments. Are you cutting down on your Starbucks habit so that you can read the Bible in the morning before work? Or are you routinely hitting snooze and falling off your exercise program 10 days in? We all have the same 24 hours in a day, and have to make choices about we’re using our time. We make trade-offs based on what we consider most important at the time—for better or for worse.

I myself have worked hard at creating a habit of getting up early and exercising.  This habit says that YES I do value my health, wellbeing and also the dreams I have that require me to be fit and able instead of sick and tired.  I have had to make significant choices that support my new habit and deal with the voices in my head that entice me to hit snooze.  But I value the progress I am making over another hour or so of sleep.  I trade sleep for long term gain.

 

“We become what we repeatedly do.” Sean Covey

“Sow a thought, and you reap an act;
Sow an act, and you reap a habit;
Sow a habit, and you reap a character;
Sow a character, and you reap a destiny.”
― Samuel Smiles

 

3. They reveal the state of your mental health.

Some habits are internal, more than external. They live in our thought processes, our attitudes and our outlook. And if these mental habits go unchecked, it can cause us to live in a state of mental compression because our habits are living our lives for us. But the truth is, mental health is the beginning of all habitual health problems. If a habit, such as envy, lust, comparison, discontent, takes root in your mind, that mental habit is eventually going to be given the reins to the rest of your health if not taken care of.

Creating a new habit is a mental challenge.  It requires will power and discipline.  It requires us to have a bigger YES in our lives that empowers us to say no. 

Steven Furtick says that our mind is like a factory.  We are the quantity managers the determine whether a thought, a product of that factory, meets the grade or needs to be rejected and taken off the production line before it gets delivered into the world.  Likewise our habits.  We can choose how we live our life.  We can chose our habits.  

We demolish argument s and every pretension that sets itself up against the knowledge of God, and
we take captive every thought to make it obedient to Christ.
—2 Corinthians 10:5

Becoming aware of our habits doesnt need to be limited to actions but also our emotions and the very way we think and process information.

In UNGLUGED, Lysa Terkeurst instructed participants (our mums group) to keep a reaction journal.  To document those moments when we came unglued and reacted to a situation in unpleasant ways.  This revealed our current status quo.  It intentionally caused us to become aware of what emotional habits we had and then was the springboard to choose new emotional habits, to create a new normal.

 

4. They reveal the state of your spiritual health.

Your habits play a massive role in your sinful nature. Our habits are shaped by either a self-disciplined will, or a powerful felt need—and the latter can often pull us into habitual sin. If you really think about it, most sin is derived from a habit that has been formed over an extensive period of time, and then exposes itself when that habit yearns to be activated. On the other hand, forming habits of prayer and worship can also create virtuous habits that can counteract the destructive pull toward sin. 

The choices we make and the habits we live either feed our flesh or feed our spirit.

 

If you are guided by the Spirit, you won’t obey your selfish desires. 17 The Spirit and your desires are enemies of each other. They are always fighting each other and keeping you from doing what you feel you should. 18 But if you obey the Spirit, the Law of Moses has no control over you. Galatians 5:16-18

Instead, clothe yourself with the presence of the Lord Jesus Christ. And don’t let yourself think about ways to indulge your evil desires. Romans 13:14

 

5. They reveal the state of your physical health.

We’re a society of busy people—and there’s a multitude of fast food, drive-thru options just for our convenience.

Look at your food and exercise habits: do you make late-night chocolate runs, put off your gym membership renewal, lounge around playing video games all weekend? Or do you make it a point to work out three times a week, floss your teeth daily, fill your shopping basket with fresh veges? Your habits will tell you a thing or two about your physical health.  If you want to improve your health and wellbeing then change your habits.

It’s easy to go about our days as usual—with our habits and routines fixed in place without a thought. But if we do evaluate our default patterns, we might learn what we’re doing well and where we have room for improvement. And in 30 days, we might even be able to turn ourselves around and create new normals in our lifestyle.

Do not be deceived, God is not mocked; for whatever a man sows, that he will also reap. For he who sows to his flesh will of the flesh reap corruption, but he who sows to the Spirit will of the Spirit reap everlasting life.  Galatians 6:7-8

Sow healthy habits and reap health.  Sow a block of chocolate a day… and  yes.

 

“Watch your thoughts for they become words.
Watch your words for they become actions.
Watch your actions for they become habits.
Watch your habits for they become your character.
And watch your character for it becomes your destiny.
What we think, we become.
Margaret Thatcher

 

 

 

Ammended from an article (see link above), and inspired by RELEVANT MAGAZINE

 

Lord Jesus, we long for You.  We need You so.  

 

Every time i watch this i leak… its an incredibly powerful testimony of the love of God and the power (and privelge) of saying YES to God… i dare you to watch it without crying…

Every time i watch it i am reminded that even in the small things that God asks us to do there can be remarkable outworkings and purpose that we are unaware of.  Our role is not to create the plan but to follow our King.  Our role is to say YES.

Every time i watch this it strikes me how beautiful the love of Jesus is.  Breathtaking.

Will you say yes today?

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Lord, 

let me hear Your voice

let me remember how vital it is to draw near to You.

You are life.  You make me.  

In you is joy, peace, purpose.

Thank you for grace.  That you always love me.  No matter what.

How me to always live out of that.

I love You.

“The reason why many fail in battle is because they wait until the hour of battle. The reason why others succeed is because they have gained their victory on their knees long before the battle came.” (R.A. Torrey)

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