This was probably the most prominent question in my life when I was growing up as a believer…
I spent most of my time searching for this elusive “God’s will” whenever I was trying to figure out which direction to go.
Should I go to this event?
Should I choose this option or this option?
Which job should I take?
Which school should I go to?
And then in the midst of the decision that I picked, I hoped and hoped that I didn’t miss God, that I didn’t choose the wrong one and now I’m missing out on “God’s best” for my life.
Fear, regret, and cautiousness plagued my life rather than faith, thankfulness, and confidence.
I found the greatest freedom when I realized that God actually trusted me to make decisions.
When a son is growing up and asks his father, “Dad, what should I do when I grow up?” The father will probably say, “Son, you can do whatever you want! I will always love you be right behind you.”
“That which is born of the flesh is flesh, and that which is born of the Spirit is spirit.
Do not marvel that I said to you, ‘You must be born again.’
The wind blows where it wishes, and you hear the sound of it, but cannot tell where it comes from and where it goes. So is everyone who is born of the Spirit.” – John 3:6-8
When I realized that the wind blows where it wishes, that the wind doesn’t ask God where it should blow, I realized freedom. No longer, paralyzed in fear of ‘missing God’, hesitant in making decisions, but now freedom realizing God is behind me in every choice that I make. I can’t go wrong.
And even if I pick the wrong one, my Father is wise enough and powerful enough to help me learn from it, and overcome my mistake. That’s the reason I was sent a Helper/Counselor/Comforter.
Obviously, there are choices that are good, choices that are better, choices that benefit in some ways and benefit in other ways.
But it’s the freedom of knowing… you can do anything. Yes, you can actually CHOOSE.
Regardless of how the situation unfolds, God’s able to work it out for the good, and He’s able to shine through you whatever the choice you make. Understanding this made me free to confidently make decisions knowing that I’m backed up by my Dad. I have no regrets about “what if I had chosen a different path?”
I make a choice, I represent my Father and what He stands for, and I rock it out. He’ll give me wisdom along the way, and I’ll dialogue with Him along the way.
This is a whole lot more freeing than “Ohh brother you want to be careful, you don’t want to miss God!“
Two months ago, a few of my friends shipped me to Finland for 3 weeks to do there what I already do here.
I was surprised, since it was my first international trip that was at someone else’s request.
I lived with Samu (who I had never met up to that point) and his family for 2 weeks. I did 2 meetings during the first 2 weeks and then 2 more meetings during the last week. It was cool to get acquainted with the culture and see what the people were like.
Finland is a very developed nation, and from what I was told, people are very closed unless it’s a foreigner. Despite the internal culture, we still saw some people get rocked on the streets one guy even ditched his crutches after Samu ministered to him.
They organized 2-day conferences in each city I was in. It was definitely a stretch for me because they had me speaking up to 6-7 hours per day, granted, everything was translated so it took twice as long as normal.
Every session that I taught, with the exception of 2, was recorded on video. I already have 1 session put up on my YouTube channel and I’m in the process of editing some others.
There is one thing that I did catch in Finland:
During one of the weekends, there was a music festival in Oulu.
So if you could imagine that whole area in the middle, along the water, and around those two large buildings, jam packed with hundreds of goth teenagers drinking, smoking, and just hanging out.
While Samu and I were just strolling around, I noticed something:
These goth kids know how to do family better than most Christians.
It didn’t matter where you came from, how old you were… as long as you looked like them, were interested in what they were interested, you were like family.
They had a community where they naturally cared and served one another because they considered each other family.
So it got me thinking. I basically realized that you can either spend all your time, deprogramming and then reprogramming Christians to do family, OR you can find a community of people who already know how to do family and then just bring the kingdom.
The latter sounds much easier, but it’s the one that I haven’t done much of… but a few examples of people who already know how to do family? High school (sports, clubs, extracurriculars), college frats, ethnic groups, gangs, prisons, AA.
Any place where people consistently spend time with each other has potential to be a place where a family-like community can exist. It’d be so easy to bring in a new message and watch the entire family shift as a whole.
We are currently in the midst of invading my old high school’s Christian club and potentially influencing the entire high school. It’s definitely one of the most hopeful projects that we have going on.
I think Bill Johnson really hit it when he said (paraphrase), “When you lose the concept of family, you lose the concept of the Kingdom.”
Family is the most natural place where love develops. Across every cultural boundary, the love of the Kingdom is frequently found where families are. Obviously, referring back to the teenage, smoking, and drinking community in Finland, doesn’t mean I think their lifestyle is ok… but the fact that they understand family is what I took from it.
This is a HUGE part of the Kingdom. But even beyond just learning to do family, Jesus takes it a step further… we’re to treat people like family with people who don’t love us back. Jesus was clear, anyone can love those who love them (Matt 5:46). To do the Kingdom is to love those who can’t love back, because that’s what He first demonstrated to us (Rom 5:8, 1 John 4:19)!
originally posted here
I’d be disappointed if I got married and my wife spent our entire marriage crying out for me to be with her. Don’t you remember our wedding when I promised never to leave you or forsake you?
People cry to God as if they’re divorced, never living like a marriage has taken place, continuously making vows to Him; never being taught of His vows to us.
Christianity is a life of celebration, not weeping; a life of enjoying, not seeking. Meaning, when you seek Him you find Him and you no longer need to continue seeking Him.
A couple weeks ago I was “seeking” a guitar. I found one. I went and got it.
I’m not on craigslist everyday for 3 hours seeking guitars like I was for a week. Why? Because I found my guitar, and I have my guitar… now I enjoy my guitar :].
Let me ask you this. Would it be ridiculous if I started making posts about how I’m seeking a heart, and seeking a liver, and seeking a kidney?
Yeah. People would call me crazy and say, “Why the hek are you seeking stuff that you already have inside of you?”
Do you think Tin-man continued seeking a heart after the Wizard gave him one? No.
Do you think the cowardly Lion continued seeking courage? No.
Do you think Scarecrow continued seeking 80’s style latex pants? Hek no.
Why not? Because they spent that whole 2 hour movie seeking that stuff, and then, they finally received what they had been crying out for the whole movie.
It would be ridiculous if, rather than enjoy something they had been LONGING for all of that time, they just decided to go on seeking it, ignoring what they now had.
People spent thousands of years seeking closeness/oneness with God. Then a nice little ‘Wizard of Nazareth’ came along and gave people what they had been seeking and crying out for the whole time. People were supposed to enjoy what they received after that, not act like they didn’t have it.
that the sharing of your faith may become effective by the acknowledgment of every good thing which is in you in Christ Jesus. - Philemon 1:6
The early church enjoyed what Jesus did, they didn’t try to get Him to do more.
I know what I’ve received, now I enjoy it. When I didn’t know what I had, yeah, I spent my life seeking it.
originally posted here
Your worth and your significance is not based on you have done or will do. Christianity is not based on how well your perform. It’s not based on how often you pray. It’s not based on how often you read your bible. It’s not based on how well you don’t sin. It’s not based on how involved you are with church. It isn’t based on well you’ve managed your anger. It’s not based how well you’ve loved those around you.
It is completely based on Jesus and what He has done for us. You are worth it, not because of what you have done, but because of what Jesus has done. You will always feel like a complete failure if you get your worth and your significance out of what you have already done.
But when you realize that your worth is solely based on what Jesus has done for you, that He bought you at a price, then you will be at peace. You will stop performing. You will stop comparing. You will stop striving for approval. You will stop working for love. You will be secure, knowing you are a son (Gal 3:26).
How do I know this?
This is what the Fathers do to their sons (Luke 15:18-23).
People perform when they feel like they have to meet an expectation. Or when they are trying to gain approval from others. Both of these do not exist when a son knows how his Father has loved him, because a Father has no expectation, and has already given approval.
The only thing that Father expected was for the son to receive His love which would result in absolute freedom from guilt, shame, and condemnation.
The only thing the son had to deal with was the judgmental, unforgiving brother. Your Father will not deal with you according to your actions (Psalm 103:10, 2 Cor 5:19, John 8:11, Luke 18:22, Romans 5:20). Know it, believe it. You’ll change, be rocked to the core because that kindness (Rom 2:4). Learn to extend the same kindness to brothers and sisters who are trying to hold your past against you, constantly reminding you of your failures and shortcomings. They do not know what they do, and they also need to know how the Father has loved them (Luke 15:31-32).
Stop performing and just be yourself. Accepted, whole, approved, beloved, and backed up by yo Dad.