Monday, November 15, 2010

Worship

The Bible talks about how we are supposed to worship God in spirit and in truth (John 4:23-24).  Shout out to my sister Katey who I love very much by the way.  She told me to start giving references for the verses that I'm referring to so that you guys don't think I'm lying about any of this stuff.

Anyway, the Bible tells us to worship in spirit and in truth.  If you've been a Christian for a long time, you have probably heard people say this.....and I don't know about you, but when I heard people saying that stuff I had NO idea what the heck it meant.  For the most part, the people saying it don't know what it even means to worship God in spirit and in truth.  Here is my take:

To worship God in "truth" means to be totally real about it.  In other words, don't just pretend to worship God and sing hymns just because everyone else around you is doing it at a church service or because you feel like you have to.  That's not real.  It has to be REAL worship.  You have to legitimately be praising God for who He is, what He's done, what He's doing, and what He's going to do.  God knows when your heart isn't really in it.  Other times people will be singing worship songs, but they won't even be singing them to God, they will instead be singing them to people so that everyone can hear what great singing voices they have.  Unfortunately, people do this a lot.  It annoys me.  When you are worshiping God....worship God, no one else matters.  My best worship times with the Lord are always when I am alone in my room, laying on my floor mat that I bought specifically for the purpose of laying on while worshiping/praying, and just speaking directly to God with no distractions and no other people to worry about.  It's just He and I.  I love it and God always shows up and I just out of nowhere will start to cry or laugh or whatever....literally.  Not afraid to admit it either, actually pretty proud of it.  I don't cry out of my own thoughts, its just a sweeping of the Holy Spirit that I can't contain.  Worship ushers in the presence of God.  Don't ask me why, but God always shows up in places of true worship.

On to the next one....worshiping in "spirit."  Now what the heck could THAT mean???  I had no idea for the longest time.  Then I came across this verse in Romans chapter 12 (verse 1 for those that want to know).  It says this...."Therefore, I urge you, brothers, in view of God's mercy , to offer your bodies as living sacrifices, holy and pleasing to God--this is your spiritual act of worship" - Romans 12:1.  It says that offering our bodies as living sacrifices holy and pleasing to God is our spiritual act of worship.  Therefore, to worship God in spirit is to live your life in a way pleasing to Him.

In a nutshell, the worship that God desires from us is to keep it real with Him and live our lives for Him.  It's really simple.  It's actually really easy to do.  God doesn't require perfect worship, he just requires that we keep it real and do the best we can to live our lives with the goal of pleasing Him.

Worship is a very powerful thing that not only honors God, but also enlivens us, and protects us from the enemy.  Satan and demons HATE worship of God.  They can't stand to be around it.  When the devil is on your back, just start worshiping God.  9 times out of 10 that's all it's gonna take.  I can attest to this personally.  God always tells me to start worshiping Him whenever there are demons around.  Often times He just tells me a random Psalm (well to me it's random because I don't know which Psalm is which just by number) and tells me to start reading it out loud.  It always ends up being a Psalm all about how mighty and invincible God is.  Demons hate it, because they know it's true.

There's definitely way more to be said, but I'ma just keep it short and sweet.  So until next time, PEACE!!!

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

My Problem

The title of this blog doesn't really do justice for what I'm about to get into.  It makes it sound as if this is my one and only problem, but I want to assure all of you that I have plenty of problems and that I'm by no means perfect.

See, here's my problem.....
I hate on the church too much.

It's plain and simple.  I always hate on different members of the church, different parts of the church, and the church in general all the time.  I get frustrated and get caught up on things that groups or people in the church are doing that are wrong.  Whether it be ignoring wonderful gifts of God (such as the potent power we have in the Holy Spirit) or teaching things about reality that are not true (like that Hell is Satan's kingdom rather than earth), it frustrates me so much that I constantly have to be venting to my friends or anyone that will listen.

I never go up and confront anyone or any people about these things, because I know that is not the heart of God on the matter.  I do not want to be a stumbling block to anyone.  Also, most of these things are done out of ignorance, not out of disobedience.  We....(I say WE because I am a part of this sometimes as well)...simply just don't know God on a deep enough level, know what His word truly says, or know exactly what the Holy Spirit is leading us to do at each given moment to be able to adequately usher in His kingdom.

BTdub, that reminds me....How many of you know that we aren't waiting to go to heaven, but in fact heaven is waiting to come to us?  It is our mission to be ushering God's kingdom to earth, not waiting for God to take us away to heaven.  We keep sitting here waiting for Jesus to come back....while Jesus is up there waiting for us to usher Him down.  There are things that have to be done....BY US....before Jesus is coming back.  We aren't just supposed to be sitting down here holding out for Christ's glorious return.  We're supposed to be making moves so that it is able to happen.  He won't come back until we do our part.  If you don't believe me, read the Bible.

Anyway, back to my problem.  I have so many issues with the church today that I feel like every time I'm talking about the church I'm just throwing a huge hater's ball in its honor.  Ask my friends, they'll concur.  I want to emphasize here, this is not the whole church....just my opinion of the general church in the United States.  Let me break down a list real fast:
1.  We take "The Great Commission" and make it the #1 ULTIMATE commandment of God....when in all actuality it is AT LEAST 3rd on His list (behind love God and love others).   And I mean AT LEAST.  (Oh, and for those that don't know what The Great Commission is....in a nutshell it's Jesus' command to share the gospel with people and to "go and make disciples of all nations."  We act like our job is to simply recruit recruit recruit.  NO!  Our job is to love God.  That's it, the rest follows behind it.

2.  We  TOTALLY ignore the power of the Holy Spirit.  We even shun the gifts of the Holy Spirit a lot of times.  You go to a church in the United States today and speak in tongues, even under your breath, and you are considered a freakin' weirdo who probably is demon-possessed.  It's just stupid.  Because of this we miss out on so many miracles, signs, and wonders that God wants to not only SHOW us, but also perform THROUGH us.  God expects us to be healing the sick, prophesying his spoken word, performing miraculous signs, and even raising the dead.  We literally have superpowers but we keep ignoring them.

3.  We never address the presence of the enemy (AKA Satan and demons).  Let me make this clear, it is not good to focus on the enemy, but it is CRUCIAL that we are aware of his presence, his tactics, his strategies, and his schemes.  If not, we will keep blaming God for all of the evil in the world.  We will keep blaming each other for all of our sins.  We will start fighting against God's children instead of fighting God's enemies.  "For we are not fighting against flesh-and-blood enemies, but against evil rulers and authorities of the unseen world, against mighty powers in this dark world, and against evil spirits in the heavenly places." - Ephesians 6:12.

4. SUNDAY IS NOT "GOD'S DAY!"   If any day is, it's Saturday because that is the original Sabbath.  And as far as I know, God never changed it.  Just wanted to get that one off my chest, sorry.

5.  We act like church is just a building and not even more so a body of people.

6.  We don't forgive each other, especially our leaders.  How many times do you see a pastor get caught in an affair and then everyone disowns him or abandons him because he wasn't "worthy" to be called their pastor anymore?  And then on top of that, how many people in the congregation do you think even prayed for the man before, during, or afterward?  Being a pastor of an entire church, the enemy is attacking them MUCH harder than most of us!  Yet we still sit there and judge the crap out of them instead of extending our hands to help them when they need it most.  MAN we suck!  When Peter, (whom Jesus hand-selected to be the "rock" that he built His church on) denied that he even knew Jesus 3 times in a matter of hours.....at the moment when Jesus needed Him most no less.....I'm pretty sure after that Jesus was like, "Hey....so uhhhh, Peter......ummmmm, I'm gonna have to kick you out of my church now cuz.....well......you made a mistake and are now a bad example for the rest of the people..............."  Right?  Isn't that what He said to Him?  Hold on actually......OHHH...........Wait a second!  He did the exact OPPOSITE of that!  He forgave Peter, kept His word, and made Peter the leader and founder of the church.  Maybe we should try to be more like Jesus.  Just maybe, I don't know.

Truthfully, I could keep ranting for pages and pages.  I do not want to though, because as I am bashing on the church, I am only bashing on myself.  God had to teach me that.  I am part of this church.  I do the exact same garbage.  Instead of being frustrated with everyone else's shortcomings or lack, I should be thankful that God has blessed me with these truths and wisdom.  I should use these gifts He's given me to change the church, not to hate on it.  So if anyone else feels the way I do about the general church of the United States right now, take my advice, don't just spend your time bashing on it.  Change it.  And we aren't going to change it by constantly rebuking people or by telling people they're wrong and the way they are doing things is not how God wants it.   No, the way we change it is by simply following God and doing what He says in every single moment.  We change it by being examples and living in the truth.  The truth is magnetic.  If you are walking in the truth and in your calling, people will be instantly attracted to you and not even know why.  Shouting and ranting and throwing hater's balls like I just did aren't the solution.  The solution is simply.....us.  We are the solution.  Not how we act, what we say, what we do....but who we ARE.  It's not about changing strategies, it's about changing hearts.  Let your light shine for everyone to see.

That's all I got, so until next time....PEACE!