Who Can I Help Today?
Ever been around a “Cup is completely empty kind of person.” I had a roommate in college during my “I’m a hippie, why don’t you feel good about supporting me?” phase. I was crashing in his room, because no one wanted to be around him. He’d draw dark, moon craters and hung them on the wall, “Just in case anybody was feeling good!” I once asked him if he was enjoying reading a book. Just to break the ice…the thick, two feet of ice. He slammed the book shut and said, “I wouldn’t be on page 158 if I didn’t.” Lightning flashed, thunder rolled, a wolf howled; and mothers held their children tighter. Now, decades later and knowing Jesus, I so wish I could have helped him. There are so many lost souls out there. Who can you help today?
God’s Sun Bathing
One day, the prophet Elijah made an unthinkable request of a destitute mother, “Don’t be afraid! Go ahead and cook your ‘last meal,’ but bake me a little loaf of bread first. Afterward there will still be enough food for you and your son.” (1 Kings 17:13) It must have sounded like, “I hear you! You’re going to eat your last meal and die. That’s great! While you’re at it, I’ll take two eggs over easy with waffles. Do you have real butter?” Elijah seemed oblivious. Do you ever feel that way about God? You’re freaking out and He must be sun bathing. Many of us are more afraid of stepping out in faith than the consequence of not stepping out. But, the real issue is trust. Faith in God only begins when we’re willing to trust God completely and not ourselves. Try trusting! It works!
Of Symptoms and Roots
If we lack hope, in some way, we have believed a lie. It reminds me of a story about a man who late one night, in the middle of nowhere, had a flat tire. He had no jack, and so began to walk to the only house around, way off in the distance. As he did, his mind raced. “Maybe they won’t have a car jack. Maybe they won’t want to give it to me. Maybe they’ll think I’m a robber.” By the time he arrived at the house, he’d worked himself into such a paranoid state of mind, that when the door opened he yelled, “You can keep your stupid jack!” When things go wrong, our reaction will surface what God’s trying to get at. He’s after the things that go “ouch” in the night. Remember, whatever your challenge is, it’s the symptom, not the root.
Victims or Victors
When you get out of bed in the morning, do you see yourself rising as a “victim” or a “victor”? When you look in the mirror, do you see someone overwhelmed or overcoming? How we see ourselves is infinitely more important than how others see us. But, what is most important, is how God sees us. He created us to be victorious; overcomers, “triumphing in every situation.” But, you ask, how am I triumphant if I don’t feel triumphant? That’s the root of the problem. We let our feelings dictate our reality. The truth is, my perspective can triumph over any reality. We are spirit beings learning to fly in the Spirit realm. Learning to soar above our problems, and seated in heavenly places. With that kind of faith and trust in God, we are more than conquerors. (Romans 8:37)
Calling All Aliens
I’m always amazed at how many people chase fantasy more than reality, missing the obvious, in search of what doesn’t even exist. SETI, an acronym for Search for Extra-Terrestrial Intelligence has $30-million radio telescopes stationed near Mt. Shasta and pointed into space…listening. After many years searching millions of stars, over 10 billion radio channels, hoping to hear some extra-terrestrial life, they have heard nothing…absolutely nothing. Running after the mirage of distant life, we miss the miracle of God’s present life. The Bible says, “Professing themselves to be wise, they have become fools.” (Romans 1:22, KJV) Today, connect to the God who is; the One person worth hearing and listening to. He’s only a humble prayer away. “Call to me and I will answer you…” (Jeremiah 33:3, ESV)
Set Up to Be Healed
Would you believe God is setting you up for a healing? It’s true! But you’ll have to get on the operating table to receive it. Jesus has to open us up, in order to fill us up with His life. We can’t accomplish in the flesh, what only God can fulfill in the Spirit. (Galatians 5:17) We say, “I wish I didn’t have this or that problem,” when it is that very problem that has made you willing to allow the Great Physician to operate on your heart. It’s your marriage that is exposing selfishness. Your sickness has revealed your doubt. Your job is teaching you how to forgive. Your mistakes have humbled you. Are you coming to the end of yourself? Wonderful! Let Jesus meet you there. It is where your greatest healing will begin.
Getting Anything You Want
Is it possible to ask anything you want from God and get it? Absolutely! Kind of. Jesus said, “If you remain in Me and My words remain in you, you may ask for anything you want, and it will be granted.” (John 15:7, NLT) In other words, if we are so dialed in relationally with Jesus, allowing the Word of God to saturate our hearts, we would NEVER ask for something other than God’s will. This is not a verbal shell game! It’s actually a divine equation! A principle found in Psalm 37 as well. “Delight yourself in the Lord, and he will give you the desire of your heart.” (Psalm 37:4, ESV) Be so ecstatic in God’s presence, that your heart becomes so transformed, you crave God alone. With that kind of heart conversion, God will give you the desires of your heart.
Our Greatest Danger
What we see we are, in some way, responsible for. In Matthew 14, Peter saw Jesus walking across the Sea of Galilee in the middle of a great storm. When Jesus told Peter to come to Him, Peter got out of the boat and walked on the water. He was able to do the miraculous as long as he looked to Jesus. But, when God rescues us, He always tries to teach us to have more faith. Our greatest danger is not strong winds, but weak faith. Once on the water, Peter began to sink. At this point, Jesus in the original language calls Peter, “little faith”. Peter’s doubt caused him to sink. Doubt literally means to “be divided in two”. “…a double-minded man, (is) unstable in all his ways.” (James 1:8) Genuine faith is single-minded trust in Jesus.
Wishing Things Never Happened
All of us wish something, even many things, never happened to us. I believe it’s partially because we don’t yet see the finished value of all we have been through. We all give up too soon! Who wants to be Moses on the back side of the desert? …Daniel in the lion’s den? …Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego in the fiery furnace? …Jesus on the cross? Paul the Apostle, about to be beheaded? Yet, that same Paul wrote before His death, “I have been crucified with Christ. It is no longer I who live, but Christ who lives in me. And the life I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me.” (Galatians 2;20, ESV) Trust God “…he who began a good work in you will bring it to completion…” (Philippians 1:6, ESV)
Genuine wisdom and understanding will always lead us toward God and never away from Him…out of the shadows and into the light. Jesus taught nothing in private that He hadn’t said in public. There were no secret handshakes. No inside scoop. No airs or pretense. What they saw was who He was. What He taught was what He believed. Don’t follow people who have a false sense of independence, tending to separate from God and His people. Each part of Christ’s body is lifeless without being relationally connected and dependent upon the Head. Without connecting to the life flow of the Body of Christ, we will each wither and die. How can we separate from our Heavenly Father and still expect to experience His abundant life?
Whatever It Takes to Be Healed
If we’re not willing to do what we’ve never done before, we won’t see what we’ve never seen before. In John 9, Jesus told a man blind from birth that he needed to walk a good distance to the pool of Siloam to wash his eyes. Jesus made obedience a requirement for his healing. So, let me ask you, “Are you willing to do whatever it takes to be healed?” Your wholeness may very well depend upon it. God wants to teach us to be comfortable with awkward. If we want to see the unexpected, we will have to believe for the unexpected. Perceptual blindness is a concept that says, we tend to miss what we don’t expect. Expect the God of miracles to show up! Love never fails, and God is love.
No One Else is Coming
Jesus said, “Unless you believe I am who I say I am, you will die in your sins.” (John 8:24) Ouch! Who wants to die in their sins? Not me! Obviously, who Jesus says He is, is a matter of life and death. He’s the Bread of Life. (John 6:35) We will starve without Him. He’s the way, the truth and the life. (John 14:6) There is no other way outside of His way, no other truth aside from His truth, and no one’s spirit is truly alive unless they know Jesus. Our fallen world will always minimize who Jesus is, and consequently, most people will die without allowing Him to rescue them. Jesus assured us, “No one comes to the Father, except through Me.” (John 14:6) If we fail to receive the Savior that Heaven sent, we will realize in the end, no One else is coming.