Going Deeper….. why?

I woke up this morning with the thoughts of a new month beginning tomorrow. Another month has passed by me and I felt in my spirit God asking me “how is your heart?” and within that one simple question it encompasses a long list of questions about my life.

I am mature enough to know that there are different seasons in our walk with the Lord, there are highs and lows, valley’s and mountain tops. But that will never be a reason for a man’s heart to be stronger or weaker when it comes to his relationship with the Father, spouse, family, friends, work-place  and well just being a stable mature God loving man in this world with a heart for God, a heart of Love for people.

So I spent a few hours early this morning reflecting on my life…my heart….my emotions. I found myself seeing how things are changing ever so slowly within my heart, you know little things, like anger, jealousy, envy, pride etc…..nothing really big but little things that if not captured become BIG and become who you are. I am very thankful for the question He asked me this morning.

In Song of Songs 2:15 the maiden cries out to Jesus “Catch us the foxes, the little foxes that spoil the vines, for our vines have tender grapes” Foxes are cunning animals that will destroy a vineyard under cover of the night. They are not bold strong lions that attack during the day. They are small, fast, and crafty and are hard to catch.

The “little foxes” in the vineyard of our heart speak of our small compromises that include fear, sinful thoughts, attitudes, words, and the small yet continual misuse of time and money. (This is not referring to “defiance of the Word”)

So for me this month of July is to catch the little foxes in my vineyard…..

Man God has a way of humbling us…..helping us see who we really are compared to who we think we are. As for me I am NOTHING without Him….I need Him every minute of every day of my life….

Time to go HUNTING

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What we know changes everything!!!

I am in the middle of a study of the Song of Songs from Mike Buckle’s teachings. Man it’s deep and it’s very eye opening for me. Today I was learning about the stages of maturity as a follower of Jesus. We all struggle and we all start as babies…through the song I’m learning that even in my struggles (sin) it does not mean my love for Jesus is not there. This is the place where most fall away in shame and condemnation. When we learn that He still loves us, still sees us a beautiful even in our weakness it changes everything!! Jesus does expect us to mature but He also knows it is a process, He sees the heart… words mean NOTHING, but our heart means everything. When you or I fall into sin it DOES NOT make us a hypocrite if our heart is for the Lord and we are on the road to maturity. SUCH AN IMPORTANT TRUTH!!

Mike Bickle wrote on 4 stages of maturity through the Song of Songs and I want to share it…. AMAZING and BEAUTIFUL.

IF YOU CAN GRASP THIS…..YOU WILL MATURE and enjoy your walk with Him….and HE will enjoy YOU!!!

  1.                 Four key statements of progression
    1. There are four times in the Song where you are going to see a phrase repeated. The Lord is causing a progression of maturity to take place in her life and it is important to look over these verses in order to become familiar with it.
    2. The Song describes her progression from being self-centered to being God-centered in four key statements. Four times throughout the book she changes and redefines her experience. She starts from being only self-conscious and ends up with a mature God-centeredness. We can follow her maturity throughout the Song through these four statements that are in strategic places. They are statements of the progression of her maturity. Notice the transition from a self-centered to a God-centered focus in the four inheritance statements (1:14; 2:16; 6:3; 7:10). In the beginning stages, her own enjoyment of Jesus is her only focus. She talks about what He is to her without much awareness of what she is to Him. In 2:16 and 6:3 and then finally 7:10, she uses this same language but changes the order to express her concern about what she is to Jesus. Jesus is her inheritance.
    3. Her initial focus is only upon her spiritual pleasure. This is acceptable to Jesus as a beginning place in the grace of God. Her only focus is that she is loved and has an inheritance in Him. She has little regard at this stage for His inheritance in her.

13My beloved is to me… (1:13-14)

    1. In her second focus she is saying, “He is mine, He belongs to me. However, I now realize that I also belong to Him.” She now adds a new dimension of His ownership of her life. She now sees the necessity of loving Him because she is His inheritance. However, it is her secondary concern at this stage of maturity.

16My beloved is mine and I am his. (2:16)

    1. In her third focus she is saying the same words as 2:16, but she changes the order. She says, “I belong to Him and I continue to acknowledge that He is still mine. He belongs to me. My beloved is mine.” The third progression says the same two truths but the order changes. She says, “It is His agenda first and my agenda second.” She reverses the priority of her concern. His inheritance in her is now first in her heart. Her inheritance in Him is vital, yet secondary.

3I am my beloved’s and he is mine. (6:3)

    1. In her fourth and final focus she is saying, “I belong to Him and what He desires is all I focus on. The fact that His desire is for me makes me want to make sure that I am 100 percent His. He owns me entirely. His concerns are what I care about most.”

10I am my beloved’s and his desire is toward me. (7:10)

A life of peace….

A very good word for today:

“A peaceful heart leads to a healthy body, jealousy is like cancer in the bones” Prov. 14:30

– Your heart is the center of everything in your life, when you have true peace in your heart it shows through in EVERY ASPECT of your life, no matter what you face, what comes against you, what surprises hit you….your reflects peace.

Jealousy on the other hand is like a cancer….jealousy in business, co-workers, your friends, neighbors, over money, things……if jealousy is in your heart it shows through in EVERY ASPECT of your life. Live a life of peace…it really is up to you!! ~~

Now go out and have an EPIC day today, making a difference in your world.

Why wasn’t I taught this as a young man?

I am doing this study on Song of Songs, to be honest I would have NEVER EVER thought about going into this book. My wife told me 3 years ago that I should…..but I just blew it off and did my thing. My life has changed so much over the past 2 years…in every area. My relationship with the Lord is completely different now and I see Him so differently now.

As most things my view of this book was a lack of any understanding of it….why no understanding? I am not sure but I know my understanding of the Father, Jesus and the Holy Spirit are so different now that this book can make sense to me now. As I am going through it I can’t help buy think that if I knew this stuff as a young man my life may have been so different!! Then I realized my sons do not know this!! I did NOTHING to teach them, show them, help them, mentor them!! (it’s not too late now) This is one more reason the family unit is SO important…. a man should be grounded in the Word of God, knowing who God is, knowing His heart, His thoughts, knowing how He feels about me, how He loves so deeply, unconditionally, even in our sin!! We must have a revelation of who we are to Him!!!

    1. Our identity is determined by the way we define value or measure success. “Who am I? How do I become successful?” The issue of our function (ministry) is important but secondary to this.

    1. Our primary identity (value/success) is found in who we are in our intimacy with God, which consists of being loved by God and in being a lover of God. I confess, “I am loved (by God) and I am a lover (to God/others) therefore, I am successful.

 

    1. We find our identity or success in being desired by God and in loving Him instead of seeking our primary value in how much we accomplish or the impact we make. We are most successful because we are desired by God and love Him. We no longer need to fear being a failure.

 

    1. Our primary identity is not what we do with our hands but what we pursue with our hearts. Seeing that we are His rose and lily breaks a sense of purposelessness, failure, and inferiority. We measure our success in context to how much we grow in our intimacy with God by loving and obeying Him. It takes revelation to see the nobility of loving God and how it matters to Him.

 

    1. We must agree with God’s definition of success. Many agree with lies about what success is and thus, feel like a failure and live aimlessly. They focus mostly on externals (what they do and possess) instead of internals (who they are to be in their hearts). They view their life in context to their struggle and lack of impact. Jesus corrected those who put their ministry before loving God.

3[you]…have labored for My name…4…I have this against you…you have left your first love. 5Remember…from where you have fallen; repent…or…I will…remove your lampstand.” (Rev. 2:3-5)

    1. Paul taught the truths of Song 2:1, that we are betrothed (engaged) to Jesus and live in devotion to Him. Our ultimate destiny in this age is to walk out a lifestyle as His inheritance.

2For I betrothed you to one husband, so that to Christ I might present you as a pure virgin. 3I am afraid that, as the serpent deceived Eve by his craftiness, your minds will be led astray from the simplicity and purity of devotion to Christ (2 Cor. 11:2-3, NASB)

 My life is about ONE THING — being the bride of Christ!! All else has very little meaning or lasting value. Once we understand this and it’s in our hearts….our marriages change, our families change, our friends change and pretty much everywhere you go you make a difference without even speaking… there is NO legalism in this revelation….there is total purity with JOY!!!

My success is not based on my status in this world.

The Upright

A very good word for today: “Upright citizens are good for a city and make it prosper, but the talk of the wicked tears it apart” ~ Prov. 11:11 ~

It says a city but it holds true for a home, a school, the work place, a church, even a circle of friends. An upright person is : honest, honorable, upstanding, respectable, high-minded, law-abiding, right-minded, worthy, moral, ethical, righteous, decent, scrupulous, conscientious, good, virtuous, principled, of principle, noble, incorruptible and more….this type of person builds up a home, school, the work place….it is the cement that holds it together, makes it strong and a desirable place to be a part of.

The wicked (the opposite of all that the upright are) tears these places down and creates an atmosphere of anger, hate etc. You ever work or just know someone that “hates their job” “hates their friends, family, school etc” Take a close look at the character of this person….not judging but actions, how they talk about others, how they act and react to authority. Is it upright? Here is where you are wise choosing your friends and who you want to hang your name with. It’s one of the fundamental things we should teach our children as they grow up and go to school and enter the work place.

I have been around long enough to know there is a deep separation between the upright and the wicked….the pressure to fit in is deep and it’s hard to stand for what it right. Who wants to be labeled teachers pet, or a kiss-up at work? Nobody does….but it’s not about that….why don’t you want those labels on you? What is wrong with them? Is it true? In most cases NO!!! And if it is it is then entering into the realm of manipulation.

Simply make a decision on how you are going to live your life, what you want to be known as and DO IT!!! In the end it’s all BLESSINGS

Now go out and have an EPIC day today walking upright wherever you are!! Make a difference in your world.

YOU are the Fragrance of Christ to God

A very good word for today:

“….Now he uses us to spread the knowledge of Christ everywhere, like a sweet perfume. Our lives are a Christ-like fragrance rising up to God. But this fragrance is perceived differently by those who are being saved and by those who are perishing. To those who are perishing, we are a dreadful smell of death and doom. But to those who are being saved, we are a life-giving perfume…..” 2Cor 2 ~

What Jesus feeds us produces a worship that spontaneously ascends from our spirit like perfume. The Lord enjoy the fragrance arising from our spirit as we focus on the beauty of Jesus. WE ARE the fragrance of Christ to God! ~

When you focus, meditate, understand and get what the cross is all about it causes a worship within your spirit that ascends to God as a fragrance of perfume. And HE ENJOYS it… LOVES IT….LONGS for it. But the word says that it sends a fragrance to the unsaved and the saved also…..says to the unsaved it is the aroma of death….think about that. IF you are in love with Jesus, have an intimate relationship with Him it causes a deep worship within your spirit…..to the world it’s smells like death leading to death! Is it any wonder the world mocks, hates, makes fun of and tries to eliminate? Runs away from? And ultimately will blame for all the wrongs in the world!!

But to the saved it’s an aroma of LIFE that leads to LIFE. You ever around someone that you just want to follow? Be like? Have the relationship they have with Jesus? Anointing? That’s the aroma your spirit is smelling!!!! WOW!!!!!!

So, what about those that are being wooed by the Holy Spirit? Do you think your life….your relationship makes a difference when you pass by them? What about those in your family? What about those who you go to school with? What about your co-workers you spend 40-50 hours a week with? I would say this makes your relationship with Jesus VERY important in the big picture when it comes to being a light!!!!

Now this is a very good word for today………..go out and have an EPIC day making a difference in the world you live in!!  

I am beautiful to God…..

Isaiah 61:3 says this:

To all who mourn in Israel,
    he will give a crown of beauty for ashes,
a joyous blessing instead of mourning,
    festive praise instead of despair.
In their righteousness, they will be like great oaks
    that the Lord has planted for his own glory.

Remember being transformed into the image of Christ is a process that takes place, God sees the heart of man….if we remember that as we cry out to God as we are growing in Him, as we are being transformed, He sees this even in our weakness.

There are there are 3 stages of victory in our lives.

1. Our sincere intention to obey God. This is the first step to spiritual victory OUR INTENTIONS ARE WHERE OUR VICTORY BEGINS. He rejoices in them. If you measure your life by your attainments it will result in condemnation.

2. Partial breakthrough yet with a continued struggle. We have regular victories yet we still war with our flesh.

3. Substantial breakthrough with transformed desires. Our desires are changed so that we rarely even struggle in a previous area of sin.

Words are easy to speak, it’s simple to say, I want…I have….victory over this in my life, but God sees the heart. When our heart is pure and for Him, in love with Him, transformation begins to take place and this is the heart that moves the very heart of God.

Jesus is the artist that has worked to beautify us!

God sees the struggles in my life and your life, he sees the lust, the jealousy, the anger, the…….he sees through all of this junk in our life and sees a heart of fire, desire, love and BEAUTY…..that moves HIM!!!!!! Moves Him.

This is a very good word for today my friend.