Friday, September 18, 2009

To Be, or Not To Be: That is the Question... To Be What?!?!?!

William Shakespeare asked the right question. The question is one we each have to answer every day of our lives. You may recognize the famous quote from Hamlet, “To be, or not to be: that is the question”. The other morning I had a beautiful reminder of God's love for me. It's nothing new for me that I have struggled accepting love, but it was so welcome to be in His presence. While spending time with the Lord the other morning, I decided I didn't want to be a husband any longer. Instead, I decided to be me. Now, I am a much better husband. At the same time, I decided I didn't want to be anything else either, I just want to be.... be me.

It may sound like splitting hairs to some, but there are many who struggle with taking current events and relationships on as part of their identity. I know because I am one of them. It's taken many trips to and through the cross, failing time after time to teach me that God wants me free in this life, not burdened by relationships and current events. 

There is no better you than you and there is no better me than me. God made us unique and loves each of us individually, just like we are. God calls this type of acceptance agape love and it is God's desire for you to accept it.

I'm not sure about you but once again, I am finished wearing masks, taking on roles, allowing relationships and current events to be part of my identity. My identity has nothing to do with what I do. We'll be at much more peace, when we are just being ourselves, trusting God, allowing Him to shape us as He sees fit.

To be or not to be? It really is a very good question but now that I know who I am, I just want to be.

I AM, David
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Tuesday, September 15, 2009

I was a Victim of Identity Theft

Recently, I discovered just how bad identity theft can hurt someone. I recently discovered I was the victim of identity theft. To make the story bizarre, it was myself who did the stealing. That's right; I was the victim and the perpetrator. As the comic strip character says, "I have met the enemy and he is me".
For some time, we've been talking about having an identity crisis. We 'are' having a crisis when we resist the flow of Life through us, but it is because we've had our identities stolen, or at least our perception of our identity. In those times, we don't know who we are, thinking that we are what we do, or some other thought or action.

When we cover ourselves with a mask, all we are doing is attempting to control our circumstances, usually protecting ourselves from pain through worldly means. We are also saying loud and clear that we don't like ourselves and we don't trust that we are fearfully and wonderfully made, special.  Some persons in the Body of Christ like to use titles or ministry to identify themselves over others who haven't yet arrived, apparantly because we find it difficult to separate ourselves from a function.  Not only am I fearfully and wonderfully made, I am one with Eternal God. I am free and so are you. The rub is, sometimes we just don't know it.

The truth is that my true identity cannot be stolen but it can be covered by worldly identities, effectively making myself a child, even though I am an heir.  The life force in you is the force 'behind' your actions, thoughts and efforts. Your actions, thoughts and efforts are not your identity. Your sum total of your past experiences does not make your identity.

Have you had your identity stolen? Who stole it? I'll bet if you are honest, you'll join me in saying it's my own disbelief that has hindered me. Pointing fingers won't help. Being who you are is the only way into peace.  Be honest and confess your now.  Be still and know that God is God. When we are finally still, we start to see there is no separation between us and our God. He has bridged the great divide.
I am one with Eternal God.
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Saturday, September 12, 2009

Want an Instant Stress Reliever?

Everyone around you has been taught to work for acceptance and love.  This includes you because everyone has this same 'system' built into their earth suits.  How about letting each other off the hook, and not require them to work for love.  How about just giving them love, acceptance?  You don't have to agree with everything they say or do, but you can recognize there is a struggling person trapped inside their body, trying to get love in all the wrong places.

When God clothes us, He does it from the inside, and then it flows out; otherwise, His desire would be for us to follow the law. His desire is not for you to follow the law, but rise above it, walking in love.

Want an instant stress reliever (warning, it will develop character and humility)?  Try looking past actions (even your own) and accepting each other for who they are on our deepest part.  Let your self off the 'work for love' hook.  Let each other off the hook...  Love first, ask questions later.


Thursday, September 10, 2009

Special 9/11 Report: (I am a citizen of ______.)

I am a citizen of _______.

Do you know what the definition of citizen? Merriam-Webster defines citizen as: (1) : an inhabitant of a city or town; especially: one entitled to the rights and privileges of a freeman.

I've been really thinking about dual citizenship and if it's possible to really have dual citizenship. We know that it is possible to have citizenship in two countries, states, or similar situations but I'm really thinking about my citizenship in heaven and my citizenship in (a) the human race, (b) country (The United States of America), (c) state (Alabama), (d) family (husband, father), and i.e. It seems as though believers in God (really, no matter who your god is) should hold first allegiance to Him.

Remember back on 9/11? I'm sure we all hold many memories of the twin towers coming down, along with fears, thoughts and revelations of that infamous day. One revelation I had was that we Christians weren't committed quite to the depths of the terrorists in those attacks. While I abhor the actions of the terrorist and celebrate the heroes that ran toward places everyone else were exiting, it seems that the terrorists did exactly as they had purposed in their hearts. At the same time, it seems Christians spend much of our time judging each other rather than simply loving people right where they are.

What have we purposed in our hearts? Wasn't it to trust God? Wasn't it to accept the free gift of Jesus, our redeemer, who put upon Him, not only my Sin but the Sin of the world. It seems that if my hope were fully grounded in Him, so many things happening in today's world wouldn't get us so anxious and upset (or at least maybe we would have the courage to recognize when we are anxious, and allow God to reveal to us our area of lack of faith).

There is so much talk about health care lately... so much that there is pressure to pick a side. Similar problems have risen over the years, although not to this heightened state of frenzy. Let me mention a couple of 'hot-topics' and see if you have a strong opinion on what is right for this country or local area you may be. How about prayer in school? What are your thoughts? What about allowing same-sex marriage? Any thoughts? Be honest... How about taking 'In God we Trust' off our money? Does that matter to you?

My point is simple. Trust God. There are debates around every corner and to think God is on one side or the other is to lose focus on what God is doing. What is God doing? I guess you should ask Him that if you don't have a good relationship with Him. One thing I know will happen is that this country and world is not surviving as we know it. Problems of this world are going to get worse instead of better. Tragic things will happen and opportunities to get sucked into an emotional roller-coaster are around every corner. God is taking down things that exalt itself before Him. He is raising Himself in the Earth (His Body) and He isn't in a system or a 'box'. There isn't such a scenario of every knee not bowing... No, every knee will bow and every tongue will confess. Did you think we would all just go out in a field somewhere and pick flowers for such a movement of God to manifest? Of course you didn't. We all know that out of adversity breeds strength and truth.

If our citizenship is in the world we'll respond with worldly tactics. Of course, I am not encouraging or discouraging anyone from taking a position or joining any group or organization. I think you should do what is in your heart (just be sensitive and allow your heart to change). I am merely pointing out that God isn't taking sides except the one side He already took. The side He took was way back before the world was formed. He chose you. He chose to put into place a world with an Adam and an Eve, knowing they would fail to trust Him. Knowing this, He had Himself to offer in exchange, keeping all who come short a way to be one with Him. He chose a side all right, and that side is not a petty political race, or an issue that divides. His grace is sufficient and His love conquers all the fear you will ever encounter. Love is the answer. If we have to pick a side in a debate, just remember that God loves us all and the system in which we keep trying to save is probably one that God is taking down. He has prepared many believers to manifest love as more and more trials happen. The very trials themselves produce fiery baptisms, revealing Truth in all of us.

Where is my citizenship and is it possible to have dual citizenship? I guess it's possible but being double minded probably isn't what God had in mind when He simply asked you to believe.


Additional Study:  Joshua 5:13-14 Now when Joshua was near Jericho, he looked up and saw a man standing in front of him with a drawn sword in his hand. Joshua went up to him and asked, "Are you for us or for our enemies?" "Neither," he replied, "but as commander of the army of the LORD I have now come."

Sunday, September 6, 2009

What's it gonna take to get your life on track?

As long as our thinking remains an intellectual pursuit, we will walk in darkness, behind the cloud. So... you've decided you don't want to walk in darkness any longer? It's really irrelevant what you have decided because God decided nothing would separate you from His love. Too many times to count, we've offered counsel to individuals and families seeking help. Eventually, we'll ask one simple question, "What's it gonna take to get your life on track?"

Very few answer they didn't know what to do. Most think they know what is lacking to get on track. Some people have answered they need a job, money, time, education, food, shelter, support system, family, and many other things. While any of those things would probably make them more comfortable, they would not create freedom. I suppose it never dawns on us that our best effort's got us in our mess. When absolute brokenness happens, a loss of hope in our own abilities can be replaced by faith in God. This new found faith stems from a source, not grounded in the world, but in our true identity, which is eternal.

While it is very simple, it's not easy experiencing freedom. Experiencing freedom is the most difficult thing you will ever attempt. In fact, the only way you can experience it is to give up trying. Isn't that a kicker! There are no shortcuts. John 10 describes a pathway or door that we must go through, and attempting to enter using other means, make us thieves and robbers. The pathway to freedom is the cross. There are no shortcuts and our old way of thinking has to be rejected. It's a very real thing to be crucified with Christ.

Study the photo in this post. Imagine what real experiences those people went through. There are no shortcuts and the cross isn't a metaphor. There is no way around the pain of letting go of a system that we love so much, but there is something far greater set before you.

Eternity isn't waiting to start when time is finished. Eternity is in a different dimension, one that will never be seen until we let go of the things of this world. When we let go of the things of this world, strangely, we are free to enjoy all things more fully. It's only when we don't find our identity in the world, that we can move freely in it.

What's it gonna take to get your life on track? It may be a surprise to you but your life is not off-track. If you aren't presently walking in the Light, you are right on track for a head on collision with the cross. The pain from all your hopes going down the drain will leave you with nothing left but to trust God and allow Him to be your life.


Friday, September 4, 2009

What is Restoration House Ministries all about?

Restoration House Ministries could just as easily be called “Luke 5:11 Ministries”. We have surrendered our lives teaching the things revealed to us in this passage and others. Luke 5:1-11 tells the story of the calling of the first disciples. One day while at the Sea of Galilee Jesus sees two boats, one belonging to Simon. He gets in and asks him to put out from shore a little. From inside Simon’s boat, He taught the people.

When He had finished speaking, He told Simon to put out into the deep water and let down the nets for a catch. He tells Jesus they had fished all night long, working hard and they hadn’t caught a thing. But Simon continued, saying to Jesus that because He said so, he would let down his nets.  When Simon let down his nets, as Jesus had said to do, the catch was so tremendous that his nets began to break and his boat began to sink. He called for the other boat and while helping, there were so many fish their nets began to break and it almost sank as well.

This is where most Christians “go into the ministry”. We stick our finger in our Bibles and begin to minister. The first word from God can tragically be the last until God allows our old nature to run its course (broken), thereby revealing a new realm of possibilities.

These men had just caught the greatest catch of their lives as professional fishermen but they do something really strange at this point. Jesus tells Simon not to be afraid and that from now on he would catch men. In response they pulled their boats on shore and left everything to follow Him. Have you ever thought about what they left behind? They left their huge catch of fish, probably their largest ever.  Nowadays, we would probably be calling Guinness Book of World Records. They left their livelihood as fishermen and to seal the deal, they left their boats and all their equipment. They even left their fathers to follow Him.

Restoration House Ministries is dedicated to taking you to that place, as we continually go there ourselves.  There is a place in Christ that is perfectly still and at rest, even in a storm.

To many times to count, we've had people in our office or telephone calls, and we've asked a simple question, "What's it gonna take to get your life on track?".  So few answer they had tried everything and didn't know what to do next.  So few answer they were at the end and were hopeless for ever finding an answer.  So very few are willing to walk the narrow road less traveled.  You see, it's impossible to trust God fully without losing all hope in worldly means.  God's plan for your life leads you to trusting Him so fully that you absolutely turn your back on the ways of the world.  It's still true today that the Chief Cornerstone is rejected by those that haven't lost hope in the world.  It's only when we don't find our identity in the world, that we can move freely in it.

We aren't building an organization or a group with an idea of having an impact on anything or anyone.  We aren't trying to get church members to leave the place they are called.  All we are about is simply trusting God and having a very personal relationship with our God.  Many 'works' flow out of that intimacy, but our heart is to be so transparent that our old agenda is lost and replaced with His heart.

We believe that eternity isn't waiting to start but it is in a different dimension, one that time, and things in time, operate.  Eternity is much like a room filled with smoke and inside the room is a thin, short thread, floating in the air.  The thread represents time and everything else is eternity.  We are an association of believers and ministries.  We are all about the maturing of the saints so we can all grow and know our perfection in God.  In short, we are about revealling our new identity in Christ, restoring God's house.

Our door is open for you and we would love to share some time with you. You won't be asked to join anything- in fact, there is no membership to join.

I AM, David

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