Tuesday, October 29, 2019

The Storehouse



Matthew 6:19-21

·       Some store treasures on earth

·       These are susceptible to attack

·       Instead, store treasures in heaven

·       Which is completely safe.

For where your treasure is, there will be your heart (motivation, dedication).


Thesario – storehouse – treasury


What are we sending ahead? What do I desire to most preserve for eternity?  The answer to the second question will reveal my heart and, subsequently, my path.  Motivation will determine the life I live: whether I live it for myself and my goals on earth or for God and his goals in heaven.


Treasures are often thought of as goods and wealth, and it may include the use of our goods and wealth, but only if those are involved in the pursuance of the things of heaven.  Jesus tells us much about heaven:  that it’s near us, (Matt 3:2, 4:17; Luke 10:8,9; Mark 10:34) is given to us (Matt 5:3), that we can enter it while still on earth (Mark 10:15; Matt 5:20), that it has arrived (Matt 12:28; Mark 9:1), that it belongs to us (Matt 18:3; 19:14), that it is seen (John 3:3-5) and that you can tell when someone is a disciple of heaven (Matt 13:52).  The treasury’s door is opened by the Kingdom of Heaven’s presence today.  


Through these teachings, Jesus describes what actions will be in the treasury:  repentance, healing, understanding, obedience, living in the Spirit, having the faith and humbleness of a child, realizing your need for God, even being persecuted demonstrates where our hearts are.  Casting out demons/spirits, power for life, knowledge, relationship with God’s people are the treasures which garner interest in heaven.  The treasury is filled with the stories and the life within the Kingdom’s presence today.


My storehouse in heaven needs more repentance – being able to own up and confess my sins to God and others.  It will hold the delight of honesty and integrity of coming clean.  It will hold the healing which began on earth and will be completed in heaven.  It will be the full expression of how I have gotten right with myself, no longer burdened or held back by the offenses of others or to my own sin.  Freedom will exist there like no other place.


The history of the places I have obeyed God’s commands and of Jesus’ measure of the enactment of love, including the love of my enemies, will fill the songs of heaven.  When I have been able to obey God and not the world, when love was acted out with purity of motive, heaven’s coffers brim with the contribution.


The Kingdom of Heaven has arrived with the casting (drive out, expel with force) out of demons (evil spirits, ministers of the devil).  Let great fear and awe come over you when the Spirit of God has overcome these evil spirits, whether illness or addiction, bad intent or sin.  The story will reverberate and be sung in the halls of your mansion.


Life in the Spirit will lay up memories of the obvious places where I was led, guided, taught and protected by the Holy Spirit, including when I got invited into the Kingdom and the veil was lifted about the Holy Spirit.  It is the story of the hole in my heart and how God filled it, of the places for prayer in my life and how the Holy Spirit directed the solutions.  Salvation’s story in me is awaiting its fulfillment in that treasury.


The power that became dynamically present and publicly displayed will have a heavenly display.  That power will be magnified by being in its proper home, where it originated.  What was thought to be the actions of people, will be fully seen as to its source and will glorify the One who shared it.  It will show itself by its true source, it will come into full view, in heaven.


The humbleness of a child – knowing my rightful place with God, my complete dependence on God – will electrify and grow the treasury.  When I could believe with innocence and dependence on God, the stories of the possibilities of letting God have his way will be fully explored and grown.  What humbleness stories will go ahead of me?  Maybe I could lay down my sword, my ego more.  Lay down myself so as to build the treasury’s hold. 


The obedience of my heart will be displayed for its motivation, not to preserve my own place but to allow God to have his way. The stories of deliberateness and willingness to live God’s way will be to his honor.  Whenever I could want and pray for God’s way is displayed in a prayer that says,  “Lord, do whatever it takes,” and then concede to his way.  That story is laid up in the treasury because it gives attention to God’s rightful claim to my path, my decisions.


In the relationships with God’s people, remember what lasts into eternity are the hearts and souls of godly men and women.  The stories you could tell of those you nurtured, those who nurtured you.  those who walked alongside you in darkness and celebrated the victory with you, those who taught you and whom you taught!  That annals of heaven will reverberate with our victory songs.  


Healing will be complete there. Healing of bodies, hearts, minds and relationships are the evidence of heaven’s presence.  I want to work for that reward!





Kingdom of Heaven



Verses

Conditions
Kingdom of Heaven’s proximity


Matt 3:2; 4:17

Repentance
Near
Luke 10:8, 9

Healing
Near
Mark 10:34
Understanding of  God’s command
Near
John 3:3-5

Born of water and spirit
Seen
Mark 10:15

Faith of a child
Entrance
Matt 5:3
Realize your need
 for God
Given
Matt 5:10
Persecuted for living
 for God
Is yours
Matt 18:3; 19:14

Humbleness of a child
Belongs to you
Matt 5:20

Obedience of the heart
You can enter
Matt 12:28
Casting out spirits/demons
arrived
Mark 9:1

Great power
arrived
Matt 13:52
Teachers who can demonstrate God -truths from a storehouse of knowledge
Is a disciple of
Luke 17:20, 21
With the relationships of God’s people
Invisible yet lived
Matt 11:12
Battles over
God’s Word
Advancing



Tuesday, October 15, 2019

Holy Shimmer

God is everywhere and everywhen - in place and moment.  He pines, "If they would see, then I would heal..." (Matthew 13:15) and he bemoans when his people have hardened hearts such that they are "ever seeing...but not perceiving..." Matthew 13:13.  


This seems to be a continual theme for God and he has many times "opened the eyes" of people, whether it be Elisha (2 Kings 6:17), those who need to see sin for what it is (Psalm 91:18) or the truths of God's instructions (Psalm 119:18).  Opening the eyes of people is part of his plan for bringing the Messiah to earth and freeing people (Isaiah 42:7) and for them to be able to live in the light of his salvation (Acts 26:17-18)  


What catches your eye?  What light reveals God's truths and salvation which can open your mind, also?  We usually stay in the abstract with the words that we read, but could you use your optic sense to take in greater God-Truths?  Could you see him in nature, in art, in faces, in beauty, in storm and calm?  


Ask God to show you his truths through your senses.  Wait for it.  Thank him for the chance to receive revelation through any means.  Don't let it go in one eye and out the other. 

  

Praying in Color I

Wednesday, October 09, 2019

Western Ten Commandments

Y'all have no other god b'fore me.

No makin' idols.

When y'all use my name, y'better mean it.

Lay off the trail one day a week.

Mind yer ma & pa.

No killin' folks.

Dance with who brung ya.

No swipin'.

No lyin'.

No hankerin' for things that ain't yers.

                                              - Veggie Tale Folks

Humbleness

God gives us even more grace to stand against evil desires.  The scriptures say, "God opposes the proud but favors the humble." So humble yourselves before God. Resist the devil and he will flee from you.  Come close to God and God will come close to you.  Wash your hands, you sinners; purify your hearts.  For your loyalty is divided between God and the world.
                                                                                                          James 4:6-8


It is pretty simple:
  • Humble yourself.
  • Submit to God.
  • oppose the devil - he's a coward.
  • Get close to God.
  • Clean up your act. 
  • Clean up your motivations.  
  • Don't have divided loyalties.
Humility:  I need growth.  I bow before God fairly easily (or so I think), but before others, I don't easily acquiesce.  This probably reveals the truth of my relationship with God, if I would admit it.  I try, but when someone is not in agreement with me and my contrivances about how things should be, I know I resist.


The solution is to clean up my sinful self in the obvious places.  Wash my hands - purify myself from sinful actions.  Cleanse my heart - in the core of my intentions and motivations.  My loyalty is divided on whether I will serve God or myself.  The question becomes:  who is on the throne of my heart?  How do I unseat myself from that throne?  


It is a pitiful sight when I live my life for just myself:  I will lose it, Jesus assures me.  But to gain life, I must give up the throne, give up the helm.  Richard Rohr says, ultimately, we are addicted to ourselves, which can be seen when I am at the center of every decision and action.  When that is true, the "Christian" life is a sham.  It is not Christ at all.  


That sham is a shame and verse 9 of James 4 explains what our reaction must be:  Let there be tears for what you have done.  Let there be sorrow and deep grief.  Let there be sadness instead of laughter and gloom instead of joy.  



It's a terrible offense to relegate God to second place in my heart.  Worse yet to think he would serve me and my purposes.  Am I truly stricken by the awfulness of usurping God's rightful place in my heart?  Do I lament and grieve?  Do I see my betrayal of God as a cause for deep sorrow?  Any joy I might seek for myself should be a place for shame!


So, now my choice is clear.  I must submit - keep God on the throne of my life by deciding to whom I am loyal.  He is the ruler.  He holds the power.  He has the plan that is perfect and perfect for me.  It is a good plan, though maybe not the easy plan, but it is the plan which makes life worth living. It is the plan that prepares me for heaven.  It is new every day.  It calls me higher.  It brings peace. 


Being loyal to God alone:  that's worth pursuing.