The Discipline of Kings…

Kingly Discipline

'Kingly Discipline
Rev 1:5  And from Jesus Christ, who is the faithful witness, and the first begotten of the dead, and the prince of the kings of the earth. Unto him that loved us, and washed us from our sins in his own blood,
6  And hath made us kings and priests unto God and his Father; to him be glory and dominion for ever and ever. Amen.
Well, Romans 5:17
Amplified Bible (AMP)
17 For if because of one man’s trespass (lapse, offense) death reigned through that one, much more surely will those who receive [God’s] overflowing grace (unmerited favor) and the free gift of righteousness [putting them into right standing with Himself] reign as kings in life through the one Man Jesus Christ (the Messiah, the Anointed One).

Job 36: 7  He withdraweth not his eyes from the righteous: but with kings are they on the throne; yea, he doth establish them for ever, and they are exalted.
8  And if they be bound in fetters, and be holden in cords of affliction;
9  Then he sheweth them their work, and their transgressions that they have exceeded.
10  He openeth also their ear to discipline, and commandeth that they return from iniquity.
11  If they obey and serve him, they shall spend their days in prosperity, and their years in pleasures.
I've read that when Edward VI, the king of England in the 16th century, attended a worship service, he stood while the Word of God was read. He took notes during this time and later studied them with great care. Through the week he earnestly tried to apply them to his life. That's the kind of serious-minded response to truth the apostle James calls for in today's Scripture reading. A single revealed fact cherished in the heart and acted upon is more vital to our growth than a head filled with lofty ideas about God. 
One step forward in obedience is worth years of study about it. 
Chambers, Our Daily Bread, March 4, 1993.
In my last little devotion, I spoke about the blessing that will come to a household when we obey God. Yet, as I reread this passage, so I saw a leadership lesson, whereby God can allow pain to become a wonderful instructor. One of my friends in our cell group, a brilliant scholar is known to laughingly point out, in our Bible discussions, “CONTEXT!”. Killed many a good bunny trail that was departing from the cell lesson, or more importantly, the overall truth of any particular passage of Scripture. In Exegesis, hermenutics, one of the rules of Bible interpretation is: In what context was the verse written? What is the overwhelming theme of the whole chapter a particular verse is found in: what is it’s context? 
This verse, that promises prosperity and pleasurable years, is actually the result of the discipline of kings. Since we are all kings and priests in this life, destined to rule and reign in Jesus, could it apply to us? 
De 8:5  Thou shalt also consider in thine heart, that, as a man chasteneth his son, so the LORD thy God chasteneth thee.
Pr 13:24  He that spareth his rod hateth his son: but he that loveth him chasteneth him betimes.
Heb 12:6  For whom the Lord loveth he chasteneth, and scourgeth every son whom he receiveth.
Heb 12:7  If ye endure chastening, God dealeth with you as with sons; for what son is he whom the father chasteneth not?
Chastening is generally done with words, and careful instruction. Think about our children: When we correct and instruct them, it is normally in loving correction, and instruction. 
Unless they disobey.
Then what?
There comes a prompt rebuke: “Stop that!”
Still, the correction is in words.
What if they directly defy us as parents?
Then our correction is no longer in just words, is it?
It may be a time out, a spanking, or loss of priviledges, depending on the nature, or repetition of the offense.
Well, if we as humans, love our children, and want the best for them, therefore we instruct and correct them, to raise them to be people of excellence, honor, dignity, respect, and obedience. Seems all the lessons in obedience we give them are simply preparation, for the day they spread their wings and fly into the arms of God, to obey Him.
Well, God is Holy, and I have been to the woodshed a few times over the years, recognizing His love, but all the well, knowing His fear. Paul, a leader, with a clear revelation of heaven and hell, wrote:
2Co 5:11  Knowing therefore the terror of the Lord, we persuade men; but we are made manifest unto God; and I trust also are made manifest in your consciences.
When we accept the responsibility to lead in this generation for Jesus, eternal realities can become truth or consequences, and the consequences can be severe.
Dr. B.J. Miller once said, "It is a great deal easier to do that which God gives us to do, no matter how hard it is, than to face the responsibilities of not doing it." 
Today In The Word, November, 1989, p.11.
Mic 6:8  He hath shewed thee, O man, what is good; and what doth the LORD require of thee, but to do justly, and to love mercy, and to walk humbly with thy God?
Makes us humble, and careful to obey, and this trembling obedience will produce our days in prosperity, and our years in pleasures.
Let’s just say, I’m liking the loving instruction, and gently course corrections, a whole lot better than the stern rebukes, or trips to the woodshed. How about you?
Let’s pray:
‘Father God, I come to you now, knowing my need. Reveal your love and your instruction to my life, and in any area that I have missed it, please show me, so I can quickly correct myself. In area where my disobedience has placed me in bondage, please openeth also my ear to discipline  in your name I pray Lord Jesus,Amen’'

Rev 1:5 And from Jesus Christ, who is the faithful witness, and the first begotten of the dead, and the prince of the kings of the earth. Unto him that loved us, and washed us from our sins in his own blood,
6 And hath made us kings and priests unto God and his Father; to him be glory and dominion for ever and ever. Amen.

So we see that when Jesus rose from the dead, when we received Him into our born-again spirit, we were positionally raised from the dead with Him, and granted royal rank and privilege before His throne.

royalty
Well, Romans 5:17 reads:
Amplified Bible (AMP)
17 For if because of one man’s trespass (lapse, offense) death reigned through that one, much more surely will those who receive [God’s] overflowing grace (unmerited favor) and the free gift of righteousness [putting them into right standing with Himself] reign as kings in life through the one Man Jesus Christ (the Messiah, the Anointed One).

While He is forever Lord and King of the Universe, He is King of all kings (that would be us) and Lord of all lords (again, that is us, his royal family)

Job 36: 7 He withdraweth not his eyes from the righteous: but with kings are they on the throne; yea, he doth establish them for ever, and they are exalted.
8 And if they be bound in fetters, and be holden in cords of affliction;
9 Then he sheweth them their work, and their transgressions that they have exceeded.
10 He openeth also their ear to discipline, and commandeth that they return from iniquity.
11 If they obey and serve him, they shall spend their days in prosperity, and their years in pleasures.

I’ve read that when Edward VI, the king of England in the 16th century, attended a worship service, he stood while the Word of God was read. He took notes during this time and later studied them with great care. Through the week he earnestly tried to apply them to his life. That’s the kind of serious-minded response to truth the apostle James calls for in today’s Scripture reading. A single revealed fact cherished in the heart and acted upon is more vital to our growth than a head filled with lofty ideas about God.
One step forward in obedience is worth years of study about it.
Chambers, Our Daily Bread, March 4, 1993.

In my last little devotion, I spoke about the blessing that will come to a household when we obey God.

Lord build
Yet, as I reread this passage, so I saw a leadership lesson, whereby God can allow pain to become a wonderful instructor.

One of my friends, a brilliant scholar is known to laughingly point out, in our Bible discussions, “CONTEXT!”

Killed many a good bunny trail that was departing from the cell lesson, or more importantly, the overall truth of any particular passage of Scripture.

In Exegesis, hermenutics, one of the rules of Bible interpretation is: In what context was the verse written? What is the overwhelming theme of the whole chapter a particular verse is found in: what is it’s context?

This verse, that promises prosperity and pleasurable years, is actually the result of the discipline of kings. Since we are all kings and priests in this life, destined to rule and reign in Jesus, could it apply to us?

De 8:5 Thou shalt also consider in thine heart, that, as a man chasteneth his son, so the LORD thy God chasteneth thee.

Pr 13:24 He that spareth his rod hateth his son: but he that loveth him chasteneth him betimes.

Heb 12:6 For whom the Lord loveth he chasteneth, and scourgeth every son whom he receiveth.

Heb 12:7 If ye endure chastening, God dealeth with you as with sons; for what son is he whom the father chasteneth not?
wealth obey
Chastening is generally done with words, and careful instruction. Think about our children:

When we correct and instruct them, it is normally in loving correction, and instruction with tender words.

Unless they disobey.

Then what?

There comes a prompt rebuke: “Stop that!”

Still, the correction is in words.

'Kingly Discipline
Rev 1:5  And from Jesus Christ, who is the faithful witness, and the first begotten of the dead, and the prince of the kings of the earth. Unto him that loved us, and washed us from our sins in his own blood,
6  And hath made us kings and priests unto God and his Father; to him be glory and dominion for ever and ever. Amen.
Well, Romans 5:17
Amplified Bible (AMP)
17 For if because of one man’s trespass (lapse, offense) death reigned through that one, much more surely will those who receive [God’s] overflowing grace (unmerited favor) and the free gift of righteousness [putting them into right standing with Himself] reign as kings in life through the one Man Jesus Christ (the Messiah, the Anointed One).

Job 36: 7  He withdraweth not his eyes from the righteous: but with kings are they on the throne; yea, he doth establish them for ever, and they are exalted.
8  And if they be bound in fetters, and be holden in cords of affliction;
9  Then he sheweth them their work, and their transgressions that they have exceeded.
10  He openeth also their ear to discipline, and commandeth that they return from iniquity.
11  If they obey and serve him, they shall spend their days in prosperity, and their years in pleasures.
I've read that when Edward VI, the king of England in the 16th century, attended a worship service, he stood while the Word of God was read. He took notes during this time and later studied them with great care. Through the week he earnestly tried to apply them to his life. That's the kind of serious-minded response to truth the apostle James calls for in today's Scripture reading. A single revealed fact cherished in the heart and acted upon is more vital to our growth than a head filled with lofty ideas about God. 
One step forward in obedience is worth years of study about it. 
Chambers, Our Daily Bread, March 4, 1993.
In my last little devotion, I spoke about the blessing that will come to a household when we obey God. Yet, as I reread this passage, so I saw a leadership lesson, whereby God can allow pain to become a wonderful instructor. One of my friends in our cell group, a brilliant scholar is known to laughingly point out, in our Bible discussions, “CONTEXT!”. Killed many a good bunny trail that was departing from the cell lesson, or more importantly, the overall truth of any particular passage of Scripture. In Exegesis, hermenutics, one of the rules of Bible interpretation is: In what context was the verse written? What is the overwhelming theme of the whole chapter a particular verse is found in: what is it’s context? 
This verse, that promises prosperity and pleasurable years, is actually the result of the discipline of kings. Since we are all kings and priests in this life, destined to rule and reign in Jesus, could it apply to us? 
De 8:5  Thou shalt also consider in thine heart, that, as a man chasteneth his son, so the LORD thy God chasteneth thee.
Pr 13:24  He that spareth his rod hateth his son: but he that loveth him chasteneth him betimes.
Heb 12:6  For whom the Lord loveth he chasteneth, and scourgeth every son whom he receiveth.
Heb 12:7  If ye endure chastening, God dealeth with you as with sons; for what son is he whom the father chasteneth not?
Chastening is generally done with words, and careful instruction. Think about our children: When we correct and instruct them, it is normally in loving correction, and instruction. 
Unless they disobey.
Then what?
There comes a prompt rebuke: “Stop that!”
Still, the correction is in words.
What if they directly defy us as parents?
Then our correction is no longer in just words, is it?
It may be a time out, a spanking, or loss of priviledges, depending on the nature, or repetition of the offense.
Well, if we as humans, love our children, and want the best for them, therefore we instruct and correct them, to raise them to be people of excellence, honor, dignity, respect, and obedience. Seems all the lessons in obedience we give them are simply preparation, for the day they spread their wings and fly into the arms of God, to obey Him.
Well, God is Holy, and I have been to the woodshed a few times over the years, recognizing His love, but all the well, knowing His fear. Paul, a leader, with a clear revelation of heaven and hell, wrote:
2Co 5:11  Knowing therefore the terror of the Lord, we persuade men; but we are made manifest unto God; and I trust also are made manifest in your consciences.
When we accept the responsibility to lead in this generation for Jesus, eternal realities can become truth or consequences, and the consequences can be severe.
Dr. B.J. Miller once said, "It is a great deal easier to do that which God gives us to do, no matter how hard it is, than to face the responsibilities of not doing it." 
Today In The Word, November, 1989, p.11.
Mic 6:8  He hath shewed thee, O man, what is good; and what doth the LORD require of thee, but to do justly, and to love mercy, and to walk humbly with thy God?
Makes us humble, and careful to obey, and this trembling obedience will produce our days in prosperity, and our years in pleasures.
Let’s just say, I’m liking the loving instruction, and gently course corrections, a whole lot better than the stern rebukes, or trips to the woodshed. How about you?
Let’s pray:
‘Father God, I come to you now, knowing my need. Reveal your love and your instruction to my life, and in any area that I have missed it, please show me, so I can quickly correct myself. In area where my disobedience has placed me in bondage, please openeth also my ear to discipline  in your name I pray Lord Jesus,Amen’'

What if they directly defy us as parents?

Then our correction is no longer in just words, is it?

It may be a time out, a spanking, or loss of priviledges, depending on the nature, or repetition of the offense.

Well, if we as humans, love our children, and want the best for them, therefore we instruct and correct them, to raise them to be people of excellence, honor, dignity, respect, and obedience. Seems all the lessons in obedience root them in truth, simply preparation, for the day they spread their wings and fly into the arms of God, to obey Him.
manhood roots and wings

Well, God is Holy, and I have been to the woodshed a few times over the years, recognizing His love, but all the well, knowing His fear. Paul, a leader, with a clear revelation of heaven and hell, wrote:

2Co 5:11 Knowing therefore the terror of the Lord, we persuade men; but we are made manifest unto God; and I trust also are made manifest in your consciences.

When we accept the responsibility to lead in this generation for Jesus, eternal realities can become truth or consequences, and the consequences can be severe.

Dr. B.J. Miller once said, “It is a great deal easier to do that which God gives us to do, no matter how hard it is, than to face the responsibilities of not doing it.”
Today In The Word, November, 1989, p.11.

Mic 6:8 He hath shewed thee, O man, what is good; and what doth the LORD require of thee, but to do justly, and to love mercy, and to walk humbly with thy God?

Makes us humble, and careful to obey, and this trembling obedience will produce our days in prosperity, and our years in pleasures.
obey whatever He says
Let’s just say, I’m liking the loving instruction, and gentle course corrections, a whole lot better than the stern rebukes, or trips to the woodshed. How about you?
We are called for the kingdom, and are being trained for eternity. The disciplines He places upon us, are for our good, and the good of all those around us. Embrace the process!

obey1
Let’s pray:
‘Father God, I come to you now, knowing my need. Reveal your love and your instruction to my life, and in any area that I have missed it, please show me, so I can quickly correct myself. In area where my disobedience has placed me in bondage, please openeth also my ear to discipline in your name I pray Lord Jesus,Amen’

'Kingly Discipline
Rev 1:5  And from Jesus Christ, who is the faithful witness, and the first begotten of the dead, and the prince of the kings of the earth. Unto him that loved us, and washed us from our sins in his own blood,
6  And hath made us kings and priests unto God and his Father; to him be glory and dominion for ever and ever. Amen.
Well, Romans 5:17
Amplified Bible (AMP)
17 For if because of one man’s trespass (lapse, offense) death reigned through that one, much more surely will those who receive [God’s] overflowing grace (unmerited favor) and the free gift of righteousness [putting them into right standing with Himself] reign as kings in life through the one Man Jesus Christ (the Messiah, the Anointed One).

Job 36: 7  He withdraweth not his eyes from the righteous: but with kings are they on the throne; yea, he doth establish them for ever, and they are exalted.
8  And if they be bound in fetters, and be holden in cords of affliction;
9  Then he sheweth them their work, and their transgressions that they have exceeded.
10  He openeth also their ear to discipline, and commandeth that they return from iniquity.
11  If they obey and serve him, they shall spend their days in prosperity, and their years in pleasures.
I've read that when Edward VI, the king of England in the 16th century, attended a worship service, he stood while the Word of God was read. He took notes during this time and later studied them with great care. Through the week he earnestly tried to apply them to his life. That's the kind of serious-minded response to truth the apostle James calls for in today's Scripture reading. A single revealed fact cherished in the heart and acted upon is more vital to our growth than a head filled with lofty ideas about God. 
One step forward in obedience is worth years of study about it. 
Chambers, Our Daily Bread, March 4, 1993.
In my last little devotion, I spoke about the blessing that will come to a household when we obey God. Yet, as I reread this passage, so I saw a leadership lesson, whereby God can allow pain to become a wonderful instructor. One of my friends in our cell group, a brilliant scholar is known to laughingly point out, in our Bible discussions, “CONTEXT!”. Killed many a good bunny trail that was departing from the cell lesson, or more importantly, the overall truth of any particular passage of Scripture. In Exegesis, hermenutics, one of the rules of Bible interpretation is: In what context was the verse written? What is the overwhelming theme of the whole chapter a particular verse is found in: what is it’s context? 
This verse, that promises prosperity and pleasurable years, is actually the result of the discipline of kings. Since we are all kings and priests in this life, destined to rule and reign in Jesus, could it apply to us? 
De 8:5  Thou shalt also consider in thine heart, that, as a man chasteneth his son, so the LORD thy God chasteneth thee.
Pr 13:24  He that spareth his rod hateth his son: but he that loveth him chasteneth him betimes.
Heb 12:6  For whom the Lord loveth he chasteneth, and scourgeth every son whom he receiveth.
Heb 12:7  If ye endure chastening, God dealeth with you as with sons; for what son is he whom the father chasteneth not?
Chastening is generally done with words, and careful instruction. Think about our children: When we correct and instruct them, it is normally in loving correction, and instruction. 
Unless they disobey.
Then what?
There comes a prompt rebuke: “Stop that!”
Still, the correction is in words.
What if they directly defy us as parents?
Then our correction is no longer in just words, is it?
It may be a time out, a spanking, or loss of priviledges, depending on the nature, or repetition of the offense.
Well, if we as humans, love our children, and want the best for them, therefore we instruct and correct them, to raise them to be people of excellence, honor, dignity, respect, and obedience. Seems all the lessons in obedience we give them are simply preparation, for the day they spread their wings and fly into the arms of God, to obey Him.
Well, God is Holy, and I have been to the woodshed a few times over the years, recognizing His love, but all the well, knowing His fear. Paul, a leader, with a clear revelation of heaven and hell, wrote:
2Co 5:11  Knowing therefore the terror of the Lord, we persuade men; but we are made manifest unto God; and I trust also are made manifest in your consciences.
When we accept the responsibility to lead in this generation for Jesus, eternal realities can become truth or consequences, and the consequences can be severe.
Dr. B.J. Miller once said, "It is a great deal easier to do that which God gives us to do, no matter how hard it is, than to face the responsibilities of not doing it." 
Today In The Word, November, 1989, p.11.
Mic 6:8  He hath shewed thee, O man, what is good; and what doth the LORD require of thee, but to do justly, and to love mercy, and to walk humbly with thy God?
Makes us humble, and careful to obey, and this trembling obedience will produce our days in prosperity, and our years in pleasures.
Let’s just say, I’m liking the loving instruction, and gently course corrections, a whole lot better than the stern rebukes, or trips to the woodshed. How about you?
Let’s pray:
‘Father God, I come to you now, knowing my need. Reveal your love and your instruction to my life, and in any area that I have missed it, please show me, so I can quickly correct myself. In area where my disobedience has placed me in bondage, please openeth also my ear to discipline  in your name I pray Lord Jesus,Amen’'
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Honor and Protocol Gifts

Protocol and Honor Gifts

Proverbs 18:16 (GW)

16 A gift opens doors for the one who gives it     and brings him into the presence of great people

Harry

As I begin to learn native ministry, there is a tradition that is widely practiced. It is called ‘protocol’.

It is expected, when meeting a native leader, that we should bring a gift, a gift not of money, rather one signifying respect and honor. These gifts are called ‘honor gifts’.

They are to be given from the heart….

I have been in meetings, where protocol gifts were given for several hours, in an incredible expression of love, respect, and honor.

I have heard about how, in Israel Jonathon Maracle gave gifts to the representative from the Israeli government, and how he cleared his schedule for the entire day, to meet and host the First nations peoples there determined to honor him and Israel. Hours spent, as natives piled his desk with honor gifts, and spoke expressions of love, support and honor to his heart.

Chief Kenny Blacksmith explained this verse the last time we were together, as simply a beautiful expression of honor, as our gifts open doors for the giver.

In our white culture, we give ‘house warming’ gifts when we visit our friends. How much more, when we recognize and enter ancestral native territories, and honor the host peoples of these lands. We are entering their homes, honoring this is only right before God.

I have seen some incredible examples of the power of this act, but there is one that still touches me very deeply: when Harry Hayes (US Army retired) and Gregory Gil (US Marine Corps retired) learned of the horrible betrayal of trust by our government towards the Navajo people that resulted in ‘the long walk’ of the Navajo. In uniform, they presented a combat medal received in operation desert storm, and a marine combat knife (K-bar), as honor gifts to pastor Jerry Tom, and Deswood Tomes representing the office of Navajo President Ben Shelley, asking forgiveness for what the US military had done to the Navajo people, stating that ‘all had sinned and fallen short of the glory of God’ and that only God could forgive and fix this horror, and that this was NOT ‘the freedom, liberty and justice for all’ they had given their lives to defend.ben shelley platform

Protocol and the giving of honor gifts may be a native tradition, yet it is one that we might be wise to incorporate in our culture today. The honoring of elders, respect for leaders, the recognition of ancient treaties, lands, and covenants, will bring the power and presence of the Holy One that inhabits eternity upon the scene.

It is this presence, that will heal our lands…

Let’s Pray:

“Father, I come before you today, seeking you to heal our land. Show me what to give, to whom, as I travel. Help me to honor Your authority on the land, recognizing the peoples You have given the lands to, who live there. May I always respect elders and leaders, as I seek to walk gently in Your wisdom, bring Your healing wherever possible. Thank you for this Lord Jesus, Amen”

You’re Who affects Your Do, until we are through

Who You Are In Christ!

royalty

                 

I have been impressed the past couple of days, to write on, who we are in Christ, that is the way God our Father sees us.

You need to see yourself the way God sees you. If God says you are a certain way, that’s the way you are, no matter what you feel like, look like, or how others see you. From God’s perspective, you are good news going somewhere to happen. You might as well agree with Him, and cheer yourself up in His word.

royal

Before we begin, let me repeat for you a story I read about the importance of understanding who we are as sons and daughters of God.

One day, a slave approached his master and requested that he would treat him like a child and no longer a slave. The master replied, ‘behave like a child and I would treat you like a child’. So the boy started to do all in his power to behave like a child so as to make his master happy and call him his child.

One day, true to the master’s word, he took him to an outing where dignitaries were present. The man was the guest of honour and so his child was seated by his side.

After a little while, the child excused himself to the toilet. Shortly afterwards, report flickered back to the master that ‘his son’ was in the waste bin picking left over foods. The man quickly retorted, ‘he is not my child, he is my slave’.

honor1

Gal 4:1 ¶  Now I say, That the heir, as long as he is a child, differeth nothing from a servant, though he be lord of all;

2  But is under tutors and governors until the time appointed of the father.

3  Even so we, when we were children, were in bondage under the elements of the world:

4  But when the fulness of the time was come, God sent forth his Son, made of a woman, made under the law,

5  To redeem them that were under the law, that we might receive the adoption of sons.

6  And because ye are sons, God hath sent forth the Spirit of his Son into your hearts, crying, Abba, Father.

7  Wherefore thou art no more a servant, but a son; and if a son, then an heir of God through Christ.

honor

Now, obviously, this story is that of an earthly father, not of our heavenly one. God is good, and even if we like a dog returning to our own vomit, go back to the trash cans of life, He does not give up on us, but extends grace upon grace, laborer upon laborer, until you begin to act as the royal child you are called to be.

The difference between this slave and you is this: You have been adopted into the family of God. You are indeed a child of the King, a son or daughter of the most High God. This truth allows us to hold our heads up high, dignity and honor restored, for indeed we have become royalty unto Him!

and hath made us kings and priests unto God and his Father; to him be glory and dominion for ever and ever. Amen.

and hast made us unto our God kings and priests: and we shall reign on the earth.
We are training for reigning, bowed before the King of all Kings, the Great High priest of our confession, our Lord Jesus Christ!
honor2
Yet, we must learn, become trained in holiness, grace, wisdom, obedience, honor, faith and the royal law of love, in order to be granted, from the throne of God, actual, practical authority both in heaven and in earth.
Let’s Pray:
‘Father, I come before you sir, as Your child. I have received you Lord Jesus, and I am so grateful that You have adopted me into Your family, and called me to royalty, grace, and honor. Show me who I am in you, my place in Your kingdom, and the purpose for which you created me. Give me courage to fully embrace Your call, No Compromise, in Your name I pray Lord Jesus, Amen! Aho!’

For prayer, comments, or to donate online:

Email: chris.aomministries@gmail.com

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Give in faith!

1 Corinthians 9:11 If we have sown [the seed of] spiritual good among you, [is it too] much if we reap from your material benefits?

1 Corinthians 9:14 [On the same principle] the Lord directed that those who publish the good news (the Gospel) should live (get their maintenance) by the Gospel.

Paul goes on to say, that he did not use his position as a minister of the gospel to take up offerings, rather he worked, making tents, to support himself. You might notice here, that Paul was not married, nor did he have children. Family responsibilities take time, and just as you bust a move on your job to provide for your family, I work every bit as hard, doing this, faithful to the Lord in prayer and the ministry of His Word, to you.

I will never charge for this: it my responsibility to God, my calling. Freely I have been given, now, I freely give…

As you give, hear Holy Spirit what to give, and honestly expect God to reward you for your giving.

Matt 10: 41 He who receives and welcomes and accepts a prophet because he is a prophet shall receive a prophet’s reward, and he who receives and welcomes and accepts a righteous man because he is a righteous man shall receive a righteous man’s reward. 42 And whoever gives to one of these little ones [in rank or influence] even a cup of cold water because he is My disciple, surely I declare to you, he shall not lose his reward.

I am a five-fold ministry gift and office – this is my life – I pray, I hear, I write, and wonderful things happen. You have your job description, I have mine – this is mine….

I have ‘see through’ faith for you, in this: Gal 3: 9 So then they which be of faith are blessed with faithful Abraham.

I believe I have a responsibility before God to be like Jesus, in every offering I receive. I receive it with thanksgiving, just like Jesus did the little boys lunch.

Then, because I walk and live by faith according to the blessing of Abraham, I believe that God will take your seed sown, and multiply it, according to what the blessing of Abraham promises:

Genesis 22:17 In blessing I will bless you and in multiplying I will multiply your descendants like the stars of the heavens and like the sand on the seashore. And your Seed (Heir) will possess the gate of His enemies

It has been a joy to me, to see the hand of the living God act in the lives of those of you who have supported us this year!

Many have seen tremendous blessing come into your households, and for this we give thanks, and give Jesus all the glory!

Post Traumatic Stress Disorder – Jesus Heals!

Healing of Trauma, Memories, Abuse, and Atrocities

memories

Pr 16:6  By mercy and truth iniquity is purged: and by the fear of the LORD men depart from evil.

Joh 1:14  And the Word was made flesh, and dwelt among us, (and we beheld his glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father,) full of grace and truth.

Some years ago, I read a book called ‘Healing the Damaged Emotions’ by a man named David Seemans. He was talking about the affect that trauma and deep sin had on a person, and how Jesus, set the person free. Many of us have been affected by horrible atrocities, I pray Holy Spirit make this alive today, and set you free!

John 21:15 ¶  So when they had dined, Jesus saith to Simon Peter, Simon, son of Jonas, lovest thou me more than these? He saith unto him, Yea, Lord; thou knowest that I love thee. He saith unto him, Feed my lambs.

16  He saith to him again the second time, Simon, son of Jonas, lovest thou me? He saith unto him, Yea, Lord; thou knowest that I love thee. He saith unto him, Feed my sheep.

17  He saith unto him the third time, Simon, son of Jonas, lovest thou me? Peter was grieved because he said unto him the third time, Lovest thou me? And he said unto him, Lord, thou knowest all things; thou knowest that I love thee. Jesus saith unto him, Feed my sheep.

memories feed my sheep

We recall that Peter had deliberately denied Jesus three times, and the third time, had called down curses upon himself. Peter at that point in his life had actually denied the Lord,  but we are to see, the Lord did not deny him.

I believe that God was interested in not only meeting with Peter, but in restoring Him. Just sweeping Peter’s denial under the rug, would not have strengthened Peter, and restored his confidence in himself and the Lord.

Here’s what I believe happened that day:

memories beach

Jesus had cooked a breakfast for the boys on the beach, and was with them in His love and glory. He had risen from the dead, and He loved them. These were His leaders, that He was about to use to build His glorious church upon. Peter, was about to become a bold apostle, but first he needed to be restored, in his emotions and memories, or satan would surely find a moment of fatigue or weakness, to beat him up for his failure and betrayal of the Lord, and divert him from providing the strength needed to keep the church moving forward with clear direction.

Jesus comes to Peter, and stands before Him in His love, power, and glory, and gently says to Peter: ‘Do you love me?’ At that moment, I believe Holy Spirit brought to Peters rememberance, the memory of the first time he denied Jesus.

Let’s look at Marks account in Mark 14:66 ¶  And as Peter was beneath in the palace, there cometh one of the maids of the high priest:

67  And when she saw Peter warming himself, she looked upon him, and said, And thou also wast with Jesus of Nazareth.

68  But he denied, saying, I know not, neither understand I what thou sayest. And he went out into the porch; and the cock crew.

69  And a maid saw him again, and began to say to them that stood by, This is one of them.

70  And he denied it again. And a little after, they that stood by said again to Peter, Surely thou art one of them: for thou art a Galilaean, and thy speech agreeth thereto.

71  But he began to curse and to swear, saying, I know not this man of whom ye speak.

72  And the second time the cock crew. And Peter called to mind the word that Jesus said unto him, Before the cock crow twice, thou shalt deny me thrice. And when he thought thereon, he wept.

On a dark, horrible night, not too long before, in the last time Peter saw Jesus alive, there was another fire, that Peter warmed his hands at. In the cold darkness, Peter denied His Lord.

Now, we have Jesus, standing before Him, loving him, in front of another fire: A warming fire, in the light of day, filled with joy, laughter, and loving fellowship.

memories peter

It has been said by people that have faced horrible atrocities, or who have committed them, that simple circumstances can trigger memories deep within ones subconscious.

I remember the time I toured the prayer tower at Oral Roberts University, and they had a walk through story of Oral Roberts life depicted. As we walked through, the presence of the Holy Spirit was very evident, and in our tour group was an older couple in their seventies. At the end of the tour, they prayed for us to receive Jesus, and this older gentleman turned to me, and said, ‘Son, what are you going to do with your life?” I said, “I am going to preach the gospel around the world!” He began to explain:

“Do you think there is any hope for me? I told him that Jesus loved him, and that He had only died for sinners. All of us have sinned and fallen short of the glory of God, and that Jesus would forgive him, no matter what he had done.

He went on to tell me of the horror of Viet Nam, how as a young man, they had served there, and how he initially cared deeply about the Vietnamese people. When they went in to occupy a village of the Viet Cong, US soldiers would save their chocolate from their rations, and would give it to the children of the village, and would love on them. The enemy figured out this soft spot in the US troops, so began sending children out to meet the troops, strapped with grenades. This man saw a company of his friends blown up by one of these child suicide bombers. New orders came from his commanding officer, when they occupied a village, shoot everything that moved. They were in the jungle, and they were scared. Yet, they followed orders, and killed many women and children.

Now, this man had been back in the US, for over 30 years. His children had grown, and he would have them over for family dinners on holidays. Yet, sometimes, his grandchildren, would come toward him, with arms raised, wanting to be held, and he would black out, and after he was restrained, would discover that he had gone into a killing rage, and had broken up furniture, punched holes in walls, and did not remember doing it. He looked at me with tears in his eyes, and said, ‘Is there any hope for me? When I see my grandbabies, I still remember the horror of killing all those little children in Viet Nam, that would come out of the village, arms raised, expecting chocolate.”

memories combat trauma

I felt like I had been sucker punched at the moment, with the wind knocked out of me, but I did manage to squeak out a prayer, and to pray for the man.

I was deeply troubled by this, and sought the Lord, for some time. Began to do a Bible study, on the English word, ‘mind’, trying to find something in the Word of God, that would help this man.

Seems there are twelve different Greek roots, for the one English word we call ‘mind’. Many refer to ‘sub conscious reasoning’s’, or ‘thoughts and intents of the heart.’

The Lord graciously gave me:

Hebrews 9:14  How much more shall the blood of Christ, who through the eternal Spirit offered himself without spot to God, purge your conscience from dead works to serve the living God?

In the Old Testament, the blood of bulls and animals could provide an offering for the outward punishment for sins, in Jesus, His blood will cleanse not only the outward affects of sin, but even our deepest memories, reasonings, and trauma’s. I prayed for the man, and I know God set him free.

memories warrior

Some have said, well if someone kills a child, or is a pedophile, did not Jesus Himself say:

Mr 9:42  And whosoever shall offend one of these little ones that believe in me, it is better for him that a millstone were hanged about his neck, and he were cast into the sea.

I am not making light of sin, just making much of the cross of Jesus. As a father, if someone was to attempt to hurt one of my children, or they were attacked by a pedophile, I would kill them, and rid the earth of them.

Yet, God is greater than me, far, far greater.

King David committed genocide, and killed men, women, and children in his raids, when he was running from Saul.

1Sa 27:9  And David smote the land, and left neither man nor woman alive, and took away the sheep, and the oxen, and the asses, and the camels, and the apparel, and returned, and came to Achish.

1Sa 27:11  And David saved neither man nor woman alive, to bring tidings to Gath, saying, Lest they should tell on us, saying, So did David, and so will be his manner all the while he dwelleth in the country of the Philistines.

I believe there were earthly consequences to David’s actions:

1Ch 28:3  But God said unto me, Thou shalt not build an house for my name, because thou hast been a man of war, and hast shed blood.

He didn’t get to build the temple. Yet, he found eternal life, and lives forever with God in heaven.

Yet, at the end of his life, God said:

Acts 13:22  And when he had removed him, he raised up unto them David to be their king; to whom also he gave testimony, and said, I have found David the son of Jesse, a man after mine own heart, which shall fulfil all my will.

memories after gods heart

I take great comfort in this verse. If God can forgive David for genocide, murder, adultery, and still use him, then there is hope for any of us. Jesus died upon the cross for all sin, not just the socially acceptable ones.

In light of eternity, this is the way you can be remembered, a man after God’s own heart!

Though I have never killed anyone, God has done a deep work in my life, and as painful as the journey has been, I would do it all over again, to experience the wonderful peace of mind that I presently experience. No more nightmares, depressions, fits of rage, because the very traumas, wounds, and abuse that caused that behavior have been healed by the power of God.

I think about it this way: When we accept Jesus, and become born-again, He literally comes to live inside of us, and old things pass away, all things become new. We now have the power of almighty God living on the inside of us, to overcome sin, and our sinful tendencies. The best illustration of this is of a roaring lion: When I first became a Christian, that roaring lion of sinful desire got placed in a cage, and could no longer control my life. He still roared, but he was in a cage, and I did not have to yield to his tyranny, the bars of the Word of God and Holy Spirit, gave me grace and power to not sin! Yet, the desires were still there, warring against my will, trying to get me to sin.

As I walked with God, and Holy Spirit has gone deep within my soul, and grown fruit of the spirit within, there came days of victory in my life, where the lions of various sinful desires got killed. The cage was no longer needed, because, I was free!

Come now, and let us reason together, says the Lord. Though your sins are like scarlet, they shall be as white as snow; though they are red like crimson, they shall be like wool

Let’s get back to Jesus restoring Peter:

I believe that we can only receive truth that sets free, in the light of His love.

Pr 16:6  By mercy and truth iniquity is purged: and by the fear of the LORD men depart from evil.

Here we have a shameful Peter, confronted by our loving Jesus.

He knew what Peter did, He was there.

He knows what you have done too, He was there, and saw it all.

Peter, do you love me? I believe at that instant, Holy Spirit brought Peter back to the memory of the night of Jesus betrayal. The fire, being the element Jesus used to trigger Peters memory. Peter, hung his head and said, ‘Lord, you know that I love you.” I believe a miracle occurred in that instant, that Holy Spirit not only gave Peter a revelation of Jesus forgiveness and total acceptance of him, but that in that instance, Peter faced truth, and went free! He lifted off of Peter all the trauma, shame, guilt and fear. Jesus said, ‘Go feed my lambs.’

memories lambs

Yet, Jesus was not done yet. Again, he gently probed, Peter, do you love me? I believe the same dynamic occurred, and Holy Spirit brought to Peter’s remembrance, the second denial, and again, Peter received God’s love and truth, and in the mercy of God, Peter received truth, and this iniquity was purged from his mind.

Now, Jesus probes again. Not only bringing to Peters remembrance the third, most passionate denial, the one that should have got him killed, but probably, the very motives, reasonings, and thoughts inside of Peter, that caused him to do it.

Again, after Jesus says, ‘Do you love me?,’ Peter receives Jesus love, and affirmation, and again, Jesus commissions him to feed his sheep. Peter now had some more food for God’s sheep, at a very deep level.

This is why I could preach good news to the perpetrators of the genocide in Rwanda, boldly proclaiming over the radio to the one million people listening:

The people who sat (dwelt enveloped) in darkness have seen a great Light, and for those who sat in the land and shadow of death Light has dawned.
Yes, the darkness of genocide was great death in the land, but the glorious light of Jesus love has come to Rwanda, healing the deepest, sickest secrets, and bringing God’s grace to forgive the unforgivable. He who did it in Rwanda, will do it for you, too…

Now, let’s pray:

‘Father, you know us. You know what we do, but why we do it. Today, I am asking for a deep revelation of your love that will allow me to face and receive your forgiveness and healing for not only what happened to me, but more importantly, for the wicked, crazy things I have done. You were there when they happened Father, yet you love me. I have tried with drugs, sports, academic pursuits, and many other things to keep running from my pain and shame, but I am so, so, tired, and know not how to proceed. Reach deep within me, and set me free, and show me what you have for me to do for you. I see how my pain has blinded me from you, for oh so long. Take it away Father, make me whole, in Your name Lord Jesus and in the power of Your name, Amen.’

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For prayer, comments, or to donate online:

Email: chris.aomministries@gmail.com

Donate on-line: https://www.paypal.com/cgi-bin/webscr?cmd=_s-xclick&hosted_button_id=95XHSDDXDS7MC

Give in faith!

1 Corinthians 9:11 If we have sown [the seed of] spiritual good among you, [is it too] much if we reap from your material benefits?

1 Corinthians 9:14 [On the same principle] the Lord directed that those who publish the good news (the Gospel) should live (get their maintenance) by the Gospel.

Paul goes on to say, that he did not use his position as a minister of the gospel to take up offerings, rather he worked, making tents, to support himself. You might notice here, that Paul was not married, nor did he have children. Family responsibilities take time, and just as you bust a move on your job to provide for your family, I work every bit as hard, doing this, faithful to the Lord in prayer and the ministry of His Word, to you.

I will never charge for this: it my responsibility to God, my calling. Freely I have been given, now, I freely give…

As you give, hear Holy Spirit what to give, and honestly expect God to reward you for your giving.

Matt 10: 41 He who receives and welcomes and accepts a prophet because he is a prophet shall receive a prophet’s reward, and he who receives and welcomes and accepts a righteous man because he is a righteous man shall receive a righteous man’s reward. 42 And whoever gives to one of these little ones [in rank or influence] even a cup of cold water because he is My disciple, surely I declare to you, he shall not lose his reward.

I have ‘see through’ faith for you, in this: Gal 3: 9 So then they which be of faith are blessed with faithful Abraham.

I believe I have a responsibility before God to be like Jesus, in every offering I receive. I receive it with thanksgiving, just like Jesus did the little boys lunch.

Then, because I walk and live by faith according to the blessing of Abraham, I believe that God will take your seed sown, and multiply it, according to what the blessing of Abraham promises:

Genesis 22:17 In blessing I will bless you and in multiplying I will multiply your descendants like the stars of the heavens and like the sand on the seashore. And your Seed (Heir) will possess the gate of His enemies

It has been a joy to me, to see the hand of the living God act in the lives of those of you who have supported us this year!

Many have seen tremendous blessing come into your households, and for this we give thanks, and give Jesus all the glory!

Four Stages of Manhood – MANHOOD – Part Two

Manhood – Part Two

manhood man up

1 Corinthians 13:11

When I was a child, I spake as a child, I understood as a child, I thought as a child: but when I became a man, I put away childish things

 

manhood temper

As you recall, we are talking about the development of men of God, generally in four stages that were: boyhood, manhood, fatherhood, and the age of the patriarch.

 

No matter how great our earthly family may have been, we are now part of the royal family of God, training for reigning with Jesus!

 

As always, we begin and end with the Word of God!

 

Training and discipline can develop our soul, forge our will, but the Word of God has the power to change our very heart motives….

 manhood overcome desires

Ephesians 4:14

that we henceforth be no more children, tossed to and fro, and carried about with every wind of doctrine, by the sleight of men, and cunning craftiness, whereby they lie in wait to deceive;

 

1 Corinthians 14:20

Brethren, be not children in understanding: howbeit in malice be ye children, but in understanding be men.

 

Hebrews 12:5

And ye have forgotten the exhortation which speaketh unto you as unto children, My son, despise not thou the chastening of the Lord, nor faint when thou art rebuked of him:

 manhood Tozer

Galatians 4:19

My little children, of whom I travail in birth again until Christ be formed in you

 

Fathers in the faith, pray, for us to grow up spiritually, to embrace our manhood, to rise up to honor and responsibility in this fight of faith in this generation.

 

 

2 Timothy 3:15

and that from a child thou hast known the holy scriptures, which are able to make thee wise unto salvation through faith which is in Christ Jesus

 

We teach our children the Scriptures, but it is our life of honor that they watch!

manhood responsibility

 

Back in the days when I used to pastor, we used to do a ‘passage of rites’ ceremony with young men and women between the ages of 13-18. I took the idea from a book I read by an author named Craig Hill, where he teaches on the development of boys into men: http://www.promisekeepers.org.nz/bar_mitzvah.html

manhood do what you got to

 

I agree with Craig, as I have endeavoured to learn protocol, the traditions and cultures of the host peoples of North America, North American Indians. In many tribes, a boy becomes a brave or warrior, only after their initiation ceremony, where acts of bravery needed to be exhibited. In some tribes, a young man had to ‘count coup’ riding up to an enemy with his ‘coup stick’ and touching him without being killed, and riding away in victory, having ‘counted coup.’ In other tribes, there were ‘rites of passage’ ceremonies that included running through tunnels of pain, where seasoned warriors beat them with sticks, or culturally required acts of bravery, where they had to complete a vision quest, or spend a night blindfolded in the forest over night.

manhood patton

From what I understand in the Jewish Bar Mitzva ceremony, boys were expected to go to work with their fathers after school, to learn responsibility, earn money and learn how to manage it, and become men.

 

What we used to do, is plan ahead, and get either the fathers, uncles, grandparents or older men in a young man’s life to write a declaration of honor, love and respect to be read over the young man. We would tape a line on the carpet, and all the men in the church would come forward to the front side of the line. The young teens would stand on the outer side of the tape. I would read a proclamation declaring that this day, they were forever leaving boyhood, to become strong men of honor, embracing the risks and responsibilities of manhood in their community, standing strong for their families, against evil in society, as men. I would present them with some token of manhood (usually a pocket knife, although some dads gave firearms etc), and then had the prepared proclamations of blessing read over each one by their elders. I would then have them leave childhood forever, by stepping across the line. All of us men would then lay hands upon them and pray and proclaim blessing over each participant.

 

Saw dramatic change in young peoples lives! Young gangsters would suddenly leave criminal lifestyles, and often join cadets, or get job to help at home. Shoulders would square up, and chests would swell with pride, as they embraced the call to be men!

manhood tyrants

 

This is so needed today! With a 50-60% divorce rate in America, boys are not taught to be men, and we, the church must rise to the challenge, and become fathers to the fatherless, accepting, affirming, challenging, exhorting, and discipling and calling forth warriors of righteousness for this generation!

 

 

Whether it was the Jewish Bar Mitzvah ceremony, or getting ‘jumped into’ a street gang, it is clearly part of the process for boys to become men, warriors, through initiation ceremony by the men of the community or tribe.

 

Seems this has been forgotten in many sectors of North American society, but the hunger in the heart of every man will be fulfilled in battle, or the essential part of him dies…

Manhood look like

So much can be said here, but I will say this, after years in Promise Keepers, my childhood growing up on military bases as the son of a military officer, or in the various men’s ministries in which I have participated over the years, that boys must become men! Sure warriors get wounded in battle, but the church is the army of God! We have an infirmary, and there should be no man left behind, but make no mistake about it, we are an army, the army of God, called and commissioned to fight!

manhood battle with honor

Luke 19:13

And he called his ten servants, and delivered them ten pounds, and said unto them, Occupy till I come.

Matthew 16:18

And I say also unto thee, That thou art Peter, and upon this rock I will build my church; and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it.

 

manhood make myself

 

Recognizing the huge hole in this culture by fatherless families, I built and co-owned a construction company for many years simply, primarily, to take boys, and make men out of them.
Read a quote by another author I respect:

From a sermon entitled: ‘Fathered by God, by John Eldredge’

“In the lesson, John touched on some topics that he covered in his bestselling book Wild At Heart, such as answering the question that plagues all men: “Do I have what it takes?” But he also introduced six new stages of initiation that he has taken his boys through that have proved to be great steps for Christian discipleship.

 

According to Eldredge, all men have to go through these steps to become whole and holy men. It begins with “Boyhood,” where a boy learns that he is the “Beloved Son” and entirely delighted in by his father. Then, it moves into “Cowboy,” where the young man must experience adventure and danger (think: David’s teenage years of battling lions and bears as a shepherd). Following that, the boy becomes a “Warrior,” often leaving home to pursue a cause or a mission.

manhood chivarly

At roughly the same time (but hopefully not before) the man is learning that life is a battle, the Warrior must learn to fight for his beloved and become a “Lover,” but still remaining a warrior for the rest of his life. Many years later, with the right humility and direction, the Warrior-Lover becomes a “King.” That is, the man steps into true leadership and responsibility, guiding and directing the lives of others. And lastly, he finishes his latter years as a “Sage,” sharing his wisdom with other men and women, guiding them in their journey.”

If you haven’t read John’s book: Wild at Heart, I highly recommend it. http://www.amazon.com/Wild-Heart-Discovering-Secret-Mans-ebook/dp/B00527N04O/ref=dp_kinw_strp_exp_1_1

In short, John calls his stages of manhood by different names, but the principals are the same.

 

Let’s talk about the transition from boyhood to manhood for a minute.

I’ve noticed that boys all go through what John calls the ‘cowboy’ stage,  warriorhood.

I watch young men race cars, ride bulls, become soldiers, martial arts experts, hunters, adventurers, because I believe God created all men with this natural ‘wild side’.

Becoming a man is becoming a warrior, developing courage under control.  I watch young men all making their mark in the world, joining the military, oil industry, rodeo, construction, or any other rough and ready world. Testosterone going somewhere to happen, working long brutal hours in the face of real danger to life and limb, to make their mark on this generation.

Like David before confronting Goliath: 1 Samuel 17:29 And David said, What have I now done? Is there not a cause?

 

Yes, there is a cause! Freedom has never been free, just pick your battlefield, enlist in God’s army, and fight!

Whether in prayer, preaching, missions, business, education, military, cival services, finance, or media, truth is a sword, and there are battles to be fought.

No matter what stage you are at in your life, there are injustices to be confronted, but like the wise mentor of Willam Wallace in the movie ‘Braveheart’,  ‘First the mind, then the sword!’

Get educated, skilled, and choose your battles wisely, so that as you fight, you fight to win!

manhood educated

Seemed when I had my construction company, I would have to throw a rope on those often unbroken wild men, and teach them respect, responsibility, faithfulness, dependability, keeping your word, craftsmanship, and directed work ethic, without breaking their spirit, and still keeping the fire in them!

I am raising up men of honor, respectful, full of honesty, integrity, excellence, but when they look you in the eye, they look right through you, because there is still fire and steel there!

I’ve noticed this about myself: if I go too long simply keeping the schedule, making the deadlines, and punching the clock, I get to feeling like a hamster on a treadmill: running hard, but going no where.

There must be some mountain to climb, race to run, adrenaline pumping fast machine to drive, water-skiing, or some other impossible task or death defying deed in my schedule, or I quietly die inside. Gone through months of numbness, physically showing up, but not really alive!

manhood castrated

Do something radical! Go on a mission trip to a different country, language, culture – confront the oppression, the poverty, the ignorance and fight for the oppressed!

Maybe you are called as a soldier or law enforcement agent, to literally take on crime and the ‘bad guys’ on the front lines. Everyone hates a bully – don’t be one, but be strong enough to dethrone any merchandizing the weak – the drug lords, the child sex traffickers, the pimps and religious bullies who beat women and children. Dad served 32 years in the navy and his counsel is still valid:

Real Men don’t hit women, they stand strong in defense of women and children.

manhood no hit

Ok, enough sharing for a bit, if I go longer, you won’t take time to read it.

I’m pretty big on action so here’s some things you can do:

  1. If you have never been affirmed as a man, take this article to your pastor men’s group, and have them first of all affirm you, and pray that God complete you as a man, a warrior, and eventually as a husband, father, and responsible member of society.
  2. If you had a dad (what a concept!), and you have been through a ‘passage of rites’ type of ceremony, create one in your community. Deliberately reach out to teens and young men, and call them to excellence, warriorhood, responsibility, and honor. If your pastor is not interested, organize some sort of men’s advance (the army of God never retreats), and get in touch with me, and I will come preach and lead it.
  3. Not sure what the next men’s movement in America is going to look like. Promise Keepers in its day was a powerful force for good, full gospel businessman had a day in the sun too. Whatever it’s called, get involved, and get your business, family, and church on board too. Manhood means excellence, honor, holiness – Man up!Father, I come before you today with my brother. I ask You Father to do for me, what no man can do: put into me all the things a perfect father would have if he could have. Pour into me the courage, boldness, affirmation, strength, passion and fire I need to radically impact my world, and restore to me all the things I never got growing up. Cause me to walk in honor, free from profanity, bullying, cowardice, perversion, pornography, lying, and develop in me an excellent spirit, strong in You and the power of Your might. I ask Father, knowing I am heard and answered, for I ask in Your name Lord Jesus, Amen!”

manhood courage

Let’s Pray:

Father, I come before you today with my brother. I ask You Father to do for me, what no man can do: put into me all the things a perfect father would have if he could have. Pour into me the courage, boldness, affirmation, strength, passion and fire I need to radically impact my world, and restore to me all the things I never got growing up. Cause me to walk in honor, free from profanity, bullying, cowardice, perversion, pornography, lying, and develop in me an excellent spirit, strong in You and the power of Your might. I ask Father, knowing I am heard and answered, for I ask in Your name Lord Jesus, Amen!”

If forever reason, you have not come to God on His terms yet, here’s what He expects:https://chrisaomministries.wordpress.com/2014/11/10/the-gospel-the-power-of-god/

For prayer, comments, or to donate online:

Email: chris.aomministries@gmail.com

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Donate on-line: https://www.paypal.com/cgi-bin/webscr?cmd=_s-xclick&hosted_button_id=95XHSDDXDS7MC

Give in faith!

1 Corinthians 9:11 If we have sown [the seed of] spiritual good among you, [is it too] much if we reap from your material benefits?

1 Corinthians 9:14 [On the same principle] the Lord directed that those who publish the good news (the Gospel) should live (get their maintenance) by the Gospel.

Paul goes on to say, that he did not use his position as a minister of the gospel to take up offerings, rather he worked, making tents, to support himself. You might notice here, that Paul was not married, nor did he have children. Family responsibilities take time, and just as you bust a move on your job to provide for your family, I work every bit as hard, doing this, faithful to the Lord in prayer and the ministry of His Word, to you.

I will never charge for this: it my responsibility to God, my calling. Freely I have been given, now, I freely give…

As you give, hear Holy Spirit what to give, and honestly expect God to reward you for your giving.

Matt 10: 41 He who receives and welcomes and accepts a prophet because he is a prophet shall receive a prophet’s reward, and he who receives and welcomes and accepts a righteous man because he is a righteous man shall receive a righteous man’s reward. 42 And whoever gives to one of these little ones [in rank or influence] even a cup of cold water because he is My disciple, surely I declare to you, he shall not lose his reward.

I have ‘see through’ faith for you, in this: Gal 3: 9 So then they which be of faith are blessed with faithful Abraham.

I believe I have a responsibility before God to be like Jesus, in every offering I receive. I receive it with thanksgiving, just like Jesus did the little boys lunch.

Then, because I walk and live by faith according to the blessing of Abraham, I believe that God will take your seed sown, and multiply it, according to what the blessing of Abraham promises:

Genesis 22:17 In blessing I will bless you and in multiplying I will multiply your descendants like the stars of the heavens and like the sand on the seashore. And your Seed (Heir) will possess the gate of His enemies

It has been a joy to me, to see the hand of the living God act in the lives of those of you who have supported us this year!

Many have seen tremendous blessing come into your households, and for this we give thanks, and give Jesus all the glory!

 

Manhood – A Bit of Redneck Righteousness

Redneck Righteousness – A challenge to manhood

redneck Jesus
It has been said that a Redneck is a guy, who grew up country. A rough and ready kind of guy, that is a man of action, taking care of business. Strong.

I originally wrote this on veterans day, a time to honor freedom, and the men who give it to us…

Most of you who know me, know that I have worked construction many years, and co-owned a millwork company in the rough and tumble of Oklahoma for seven years.

Here I think of some of the oilmen, ranchers, construction workers, military, police, and firemen I have met over the years, that would embrace these seven claims to manhood.

Men who love God, their families and this country.

Seven Claims of Manhood

1. A Man keeps his word – Word given, word kept

redneck word
Ps 15:4 In whose eyes a vile person is contemned; but he honoureth them that fear the LORD. He that sweareth to his own hurt, and changeth not.

Heard a preacher preach this verse one day, made me chuckle: Psalm 50:9 (RSVCE) |
9 I will accept no bull from your house

redneck bull
Our words should count! We do not need to be cute and full of show and no go. Say what you mean, and mean what you say, and you will be respected.

Read Job 29, the whole chapter and see what a man of God, respected in the community and by God looks like:

I pick it up here in verse:
8 The young men saw me, and hid themselves: and the aged arose, and stood up.
9 The princes refrained talking, and laid their hand on their mouth.
10 The nobles held their peace, and their tongue cleaved to the roof of their mouth

Be that man!

2. Finishes what He starts:

redneck finish
Re 21:6 And he said unto me, It is done. I am Alpha and Omega, the beginning and the end. I will give unto him that is athirst of the fountain of the water of life freely.

Re 22:13 I am Alpha and Omega, the beginning and the end, the first and the last.

If you bit off more than you can chew: chew! Get yourself some help if you need to, but finish what you start. The world is full of dreamers, schemers, and wanna be’s. Be a man of conviction, if you start something, finish it.

redneck excuse
3. Keeps a good name –

Many of you know, my father served 32 years as a naval officer. I grew up on military bases all over the place, but have learned that no matter where in the world you are, you need to keep a good name….

Pr 22:1 A good name is rather to be chosen than great riches, and loving favour rather than silver and gold.

Ec 7:1 A good name is better than precious ointment; and the day of death than the day of one’s birth.

redneck nameWhy is the day of our death better than the day of our birth? Because if we have served God, when we die, we enter into our eternal reward, the rest of the Lord we have worked our whole life for.

Don’t get all proud and haughty over this one. What I want to say here is stay faithful to God, and stay in the fight. When you do, you will end up with a good name, God Himself will make sure of it. You don’t need to blow your own horn:

John 12:26
If any man serve me, let him follow me; and where I am, there shall also my servant be: if any man serve me, him will my Father honour.

All these people running around promoting themselves, get outta the rat race. You are not a rat, you are running a different kind of race.

Proverbs 27:2 Let another man praise thee, and not thine own mouth; a stranger, and not thine own lips.

God is not deaf nor blind. If you seek Him first, and put Him and His Word first place in your every decision, your promotion will come, and nothing and no one can stop it. Keep learning, growing, developing, and He will open doors for you that no man can shut.

Psalm 75: 5 Lift not up your horn on high: speak not with a stiff neck.
6 For promotion cometh neither from the east, nor from the west, nor from the south.
7 But God is the judge: he putteth down one, and setteth up another

Servanthood, honesty and hard work will promote you, God has set these things in the earth for our eternal development, embrace the process. Read, learn, and grow…Push your limits, find a way around your limitations…

4. Attends Church –

redneck church
Heb 10:25 Not forsaking the assembling of ourselves together, as the manner of some is; but exhorting one another: and so much the more, as ye see the day approaching.

Need some more reasons? Read this: https://chrisaomministries.wordpress.com/2014/12/04/why-go-to-church/

Find yourself a good, life-giving, Bible believing church, where you can raise your family in truth. Shop if you need to. You do not need to attend the one you grew up in, if it is poison, and an inbred brood of snakes. Go somewhere with vision, where you can worship, serve, love people, and walk with Jesus.

reneck be church

Never let your church become your God, Jesus alone reserves that place…six men

5. Protects and Provides for His Family, Home, Community, and nation

redneck work
1Ti 5:8 But if any provide not for his own, and specially for those of his own house, he hath denied the faith, and is worse than an infidel.

Go to work!

Proverbs 14:23
In all labour there is profit: but the talk of the lips tendeth only to penury.

The old saying: ‘The road to hell is paved with good intentions’ has some truth in it. Intending to do something, and doing it are different animals. Get busy with what you know to do, and plan your work, and work your plan.

If you have been around the block a couple of times, we have all seen the latest greatest ‘get rich quick’ scheme, and truth be told, some of them actually work, IF YOU WORK THEM! There is no free lunch in life. Whatever you put your hand to, you gotta work at, and not half heartedly, go for it!

Ecclesiastes 9:10
Whatsoever thy hand findeth to do, do it with thy might; for there is no work, nor device, nor knowledge, nor wisdom, in the grave, whither thou goest.

We only have one life to live, and living in light of eternity, with passion, purpose, enthusiasm, determined to write your eternal testimony on the fabric of HISstory is honorable.

reneck Christ

We are all going to die one day, but not today: so let’s bust a move and get something done, make something happen.

Live in such a way, that the great cloud of witnesses in heaven is leaning over the balcony, cheering you on, and each day,
you are putting a smile on Jesus face. I’m not wimpering through death’s door, with a whine of ‘Phew! I made it’, nope, when I hit heaven, it will be with a shout, yelling: ‘Jesus! That was a rush! Now where is David, Paul, and those mighty men I’ve been reading about?’

I’m going out with a shout!

redneck one life
6. Helps folks in tragedy or with the poor

Isa 40:1 Comfort ye, comfort ye my people, saith your God.

De 15:7 If there be among you a poor man of one of thy brethren within any of thy gates in thy land which the LORD thy God giveth thee, thou shalt not harden thine heart, nor shut thine hand from thy poor brother:

I have shewed you all things, how that so labouring ye ought to support the weak, and to remember the words of the Lord Jesus, how he said, It is more blessed to give than to receive

Pr 28:27 He that giveth unto the poor shall not lack: but he that hideth his eyes shall have many a curse.

Pr 29:7 The righteous considereth the cause of the poor: but the wicked regardeth not to know it.

Pr 29:13 The poor and the deceitful man meet together: the LORD lighteneth both their eyes.

We then that are strong ought to bear the infirmities of the weak, and not to please ourselves.

Was complaining to a buddy one day, about the homeless guys at the intersection panhandling, that would not work. This wise friend of mine said quietly: ‘I know we can’t give them money, or they will only drink it, so I keep a box of fruit, bottled water, granola bars and stuff in my console, so that when a guy asks me for something, I can at least give them something to eat.’

Made me think back on all the times I’ve been dealt a brutal turn in life, and been knocked down. Gotta help folks…

Wisdom, love, we are all gonna meet God one day, and if we need mercy, we need to give it…

Pr 29:14 The king that faithfully judgeth the poor, his throne shall be established for ever.

Help your neighbor, your co-worker. If a guy goes to jail, visit him, and pray with him. If someone loses a loved one, love them, help them get their affairs in order, transition. People leave a big hole when they go, I know, buried eight of my family at one point, felt like a walking zombie for those years, like I’d been sucker punched. Great people walked with me those years and saw me through, now it’s my turn to be one of those great people…Someone ends up in the hospital, go see them. See someone without food or clothes, help them or point them towards help, love children and be a good example to them.

Be strong, stay fit, so that you can help the weak:

There might be someone needing help moving, or a vehicle needing pushed off the road somewhere. The Bible says to glorify God in your body, and to remain strong in the Lord. Be strong!

7. Submits to Righteous authority and Rebukes and prays for unrighteous authority.

Heb 13:7 Remember them which have the rule over you, who have spoken unto you the word of God: whose faith follow, considering the end of their conversation.

Jesus Christ the same yesterday, and to day, and for ever.

Heb 13:17 Obey them that have the rule over you, and submit yourselves: for they watch for your souls, as they that must give account, that they may do it with joy, and not with grief: for that is unprofitable for you.

1Pe 2:13 Submit yourselves to every ordinance of man for the Lord’s sake: whether it be to the king, as supreme;
14 Or unto governors, as unto them that are sent by him for the punishment of evildoers, and for the praise of them that do well.
15 For so is the will of God, that with well doing ye may put to silence the ignorance of foolish men:

A man of God works hard, and fights to keep his word, strong in the love of God. When he sees someone playing games pretending to know something he doesn’t he is not afraid to speak up and be heard, silencing foolish men.

Jesus is a man under authority, and so are we. We honor just laws and uphold the honor of God and this nation. We are also not afraid to rebuke unjust, corrupt laws, as Deitrich Bonhoeffer said: ‘Silence in the presence of evil, is evil.’

redneck speak
You want respect and authority, you must learn to first submit to righteous authority. Jesus did it, so can you.

Herein is our love made perfect, that we may have boldness in the day of judgment: because as he is, so are we in this world.

Mt 8:9 For I am a man under authority, having soldiers under me: and I say to this man, Go, and he goeth; and to another, Come, and he cometh; and to my servant, Do this, and he doeth it.

If you think that you are like a wild stallion, that no one will ever put a rope on you, sign up for the military and learn honor.

You will respect authority, if you want to be respected.

We are to pray for authority, asking God to give them wisdom and help.
1 Tim 2:1 ¶ I exhort therefore, that, first of all, supplications, prayers, intercessions, and giving of thanks, be made for all men;
2 For kings, and for all that are in authority; that we may lead a quiet and peaceable life in all godliness and honesty.

Notice this verse: We pray, so that we may lead quiet and peaceable lives, godly and honest.
I get angry when I see television constantly blasting leaders, politicians, or anything honorable. We may hate what a leader is doing, and cannot respect him. Respect the position, not the man! Pray for the office of the President, even if you do not like our current president.

You can stand against abortion, same-sex marriage, lying, bribery and corruption in government, and Islam, and still honor the offices of people in authority. We may hate certain decisions they make, but we can still pray for them, and honor God’s authority in this nation.

This is the verse we have used in our men’s group at church:
1 Peter 2:17
Honour all men. Love the brotherhood. Fear God. Honour the king.

This is a very simple look at manhood. I have written a number of articles on manhood:

https://chrisaomministries.wordpress.com/2015/01/09/the-four-stages-of-manhood-the-age-of-the-patriarch/

https://chrisaomministries.wordpress.com/2014/12/15/four-stages-of-manhood-fatherhood/

https://chrisaomministries.wordpress.com/2014/12/06/four-stages-of-manhood-manhood-part-two/

https://chrisaomministries.wordpress.com/2014/11/30/the-four-stages-of-biblical-manhood-part-one-boyhood/

https://chrisaomministries.wordpress.com/2014/11/12/manhood-a-bit-of-redneck-righteousness/

https://chrisaomministries.wordpress.com/2014/12/03/no-bull/

https://chrisaomministries.wordpress.com/2014/12/12/the-warrior-heart-of-god/
I think I still need to write one on the importance of a man keeping his word, or watching over it to fulfill it. Sure, stuff comes up, and we cannot always do what we planned, but we can always pick up the phone, and communicate what we are doing, letting people know why we are doing what we are doing: respect…

redneck respect
Let’s pray:
‘Father, make us men of honor, responsibility, respectable, strong, and courageous. Give us wisdom how to treat all people, and to treat all honorably. Make us men of prayer and action, quick to seek you for direction, quick to correct our mistakes, quick to forgive, love, and make wrongs right. Raise us up as pillars in our families, communities, and this nation, in your name we pray Lord Jesus. Amen’

Indian Giver? NOT!

Indian Giver? NOT!

Indian Giver? NOT!

I remember a protocol ceremony where my friend Jonathon Maracle sternly rebuked the concept of ‘Indian Giving’, where a gift was given, then demanded back at a later time. This is racist foolishness, and has never been part of the culture, traditions or honor of any known tribe…

He then gave a very expensive and beautiful flag and gift from the Mohawk nation to a white leader…

Warrior!

Mt 6:3 But when thou doest alms, let not thy left hand know what thy right hand doeth:
Give poor
Matthew 6
Amplified Bible (AMP)
6 Take care not to do your good deeds publicly or before men, in order to be seen by them; otherwise you will have no reward [[a]reserved for and awaiting you] with and from your Father Who is in heaven.
2 Thus, whenever you give to the poor, do not blow a trumpet before you, as the hypocrites in the synagogues and in the streets like to do, that they may be [b]recognized and honored and praised by men. Truly I tell you, they have their reward [c]in full already.
3 But when you give to charity, do not let your left hand know what your right hand is doing,
4 So that your deeds of charity may be in secret; and your Father Who sees in secret will reward you openly.

As I studied the history of the Choctaw/Chickasaw people, I read this, and it touched me:

“Like all their race, the Choctaws never forgot an act of kindness be it ever so trivial; and many a white man overtaken be misfortune when traveling over their country, and weak beneath the remorseless grasp of hunger, has felt that the truth of the eastern proverb has been brought home to him: Cast thy bread upon the waters, and thou shalt find it after many days. More than once has it fallen to my lot to contribute to an Indian’s immediate necessities, in days of their individual want and weakness; and, in after days—the incident by me long forgotten; they have returned the favor thirty fold; and for many favors have I become indebted to them, when I had nothing to return. Their great delicacy in conferring a favor was not the least admirable part of their conduct, often they would leave a large wild turkey upon the door-sill, or place a venison ham just within it, and steal away without saying a word, as if they feared you might suspect them of trying to buy your friendship, when not enabled to secure it alone by merit; or that, to accept a present from a poor Indian might be humiliating to the pride of the receiver and they would spare him mortification of returning thanks. Never was a race of people more sensitive to kindness, or more grateful for any little act of benevolence exercised toward them, or practiced the great Christian principle, Charity to a greater degree of perfection, especially in regard to strangers, than did the North American Indians. The missionaries everywhere and among all tribes, met them with kindness and confidence and conducted themselves by the rules of strict integrity in all their confidence in the Indians was betrayed, or their good opinion of them destroyed.”
give chief

Let’s Pray
‘Father, may we continue to give to those less fortunate than us, secretly, that You might reward us openly. We ask, knowing we are heard, for we ask in Your name Lord Jesus, Amen!”

Seven Harvests of a Fruitful Christian

Seven Harvests of a Fruitful Christian

As Many of You Know Mac Gober, of CaananLand Minstries, went home to His eternal Reward, yesterday, May 5th, 2014.

As I was going through some old sermons, I discovered one of pastor Mac’s sermons I had used to prepare one of my messages back in the ‘Preach six times/week’ season of my life where for many years, I pastored two small churches, with a very difficult schedule. Hey Mac, if you are looking over the balcony, here’s one that helped change my life, Thanks!

Chris

Seven Harvests of a Fruitful Christian
“You shall know them by their fruits…Wherefore, by their fruits ye shall know them.” (Matt. 7:16 & 20)
In the seventh chapter of Matthew, Jesus delivers a remarkable message about the Christian life. Like bookends, two similar statements sit on either end of this passage. In both verse 16 and verse 20, Jesus declares the importance of “fruit” as the measure of ministry and spiritual maturity.
In between these two bookends, the Lord elaborates on this important truth:
Ye shall know them by their fruits. Do men gather grapes of thorns, or figs of thistles? Even so every good tree bringeth forth good fruit; but a corrupt tree bringeth forth evil fruit. A good tree cannot bring forth evil fruit, neither can a corrupt tree bring forth good fruit. Every tree that bringeth not forth good fruit is hewn down, and cast into the fire. Wherefore by their fruits ye shall know them.
In many different parts of the Word of God, a tree is used as an analogy for a human life. For example, in the very first Psalm, the man who delights in the law of the Lord is described as “a tree planted by the rivers of water, that bringeth forth his fruit in his season.” This is precisely what Jesus does here.
He is telling us that we can know some things through the evidence of fruit. In fact, there are some vitally important judgments you can only make by examining fruit. Judgments such as: What is authentic ministry? How do you identify valid ministry?
These are important questions because you don’t want to associate with or submit your life to ministry that is not born of the Spirit of God and that will not impart life. Thus, you must have a way of measuring valid ministry.
As you discover when you read the next few verses in this passage, this is not the way people usually measure ministry. Verse 22 says:
Many will say to me in that day, Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in thy name? and in thy name have cast out devils? and in thy name done many wonderful works? And then will I profess unto them, I never knew you: depart from me, ye that work iniquity.
The kinds of things most Christians use to measure valid ministry are spectacular, supernatural things — things such as prophecy, miracles or casting out of devils. Yet Jesus makes it clear here that this is not the way to evaluate the validity of a person’s ministry.
No, according to our Lord, you measure ministry by the fruit.
“But Mac,” you may be thinking, “Doesn’t the Bible say ‘judge not lest ye be judged’?”
Yes it does. But that command is referring to the heart of man. The Word says only God knows the heart of a person. You can’t judge that. But there are judgments you must make about who you’re going to fellowship with and under what ministries you’re going to serve.
Yet there is another area in which it is vital to examine and evaluate fruit. I’m talking about the realm of your own life.
Self Evaluation
As valuable as “fruit” is as an indicator of valid ministry, it is even more important as a way to check out your own walk with God. How important is fruit bearing in the life of a believer? Jesus gives us a pretty good indication in the 15th chapter of John:
Herein is my Father glorified, that ye bear much fruit; so shall ye be my disciples. (John 15:8)
Notice that it doesn’t say bear “little” fruit, some fruit or “occasional” fruit. It says the Father is glorified when we bear “much” fruit. Only then will you be a disciple of Jesus and live a life conformed to Jesus’ example. Only then will you begin to experience the highest will of God for your life.
Fruit bearing is one of those over-arching Bible truths that embraces everything and helps orient our life properly. Everything hinges on our understanding of this vital subject. So, the question becomes, “What does it mean to bear fruit? How do we cultivate and produce a good crop of fruit in our life?” And most basically, “What is fruit?”
Your Fruit Is for Others
If you’re going to meaningfully measure your life by the fruit you’re producing, then you need to know what it is.
Here is my definition of “fruit” in a believer’s life: Good fruit is the product of the seed of God’s Word, sown in your heart, producing a result that is a blessing to someone else. Fruit is always for somebody else. Trees don’t partake of their own fruit. Apple trees give apples for others, not for itself.
Note that it is the seed of God’s Word sown in the human heart that produces fruit. The Bible, the revealed will of God for all believers, will produce the same types of fruit in everybody. Anyone that has the seed of the Word sown in their heart and properly cultivated, will bear fruit.
This happens as naturally as apple trees produce apples. No striving. No straining. (Have you ever seen a pear tree straining to squeeze out some pears?) No extraordinary efforts are required. It’s a natural byproduct of the processes and principles God has put in place.
What types of fruit will the Word produce in your life? At the most basic level, you can expect it to produce the “fruit of the Spirit.”
But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith, Meekness, temperance: against such there is no law. (Galatians 5:22,23)
Let’s examine each of the seven types of fruit.
The Fruit of Love
How’s your love walk?
When I say “love,” I’m not talking about the sentimental, mushy kind of feeling most people think of when they hear the word “love.” The Greek word translated “love” in this passage is agape. I’m sure you know this word literally means “the God kind of love.” It is love that gives. In fact, it’s the same word used in John 3:16 when it says, “God so loved the world that He gave…”
That’s what the fruit of love does. It gives. It gives when it’s not justified. It gives whether it feels like it or not.
When you’re manifesting the fruit of love, you find yourself choosing to serve somebody’s interest rather than your own.
You need to check out your love quotient by deciding to serve somebody that does not have the capacity, intellectually, socially, financially to do one thing for you in return. Can you do that? Can you do it on a regular basis? Can you do it with a measure of the compassion that Jesus had when He served? If so, you’re bearing the fruit of the love of God.
The Fruit of Joy
Joy is a much-needed commodity in the body of Christ, today. Many believers spend half their days walking around on their lower lips, moaning about the circumstances they’re having to deal with.
When you are manifesting the fruit of joy, nothing bothers you. You can laugh at the Devil. It’s a supernatural force operating in the human life. And it’s simply a product of the seed of God’s Word being sown in your heart.
When I think about joy, I’m reminded of what James says about it:
My brethren, count it all joy when ye fall into divers temptations; Knowing this, that the trying of your faith worketh patience. But let patience have her perfect work, that ye may be perfect and entire, wanting nothing. (James 1:2-4)
Why should you produce the fruit of joy when you encounter a trial? Because if you don’t quit; if you keep standing in faith; if you keep on being consistent (which is what patience means); you can be assured that when you come out on the other side, you’re going to be “perfect and entire, wanting nothing.”
It’s no coincidence that James encourages you to cultivate joy when facing hard times. It’s the fruit of joy that enables you to stand until you get the victory. But this has to be real to you. This seed has to be firmly sown in your heart. You have to have grown and cultivated it to consistently manifest the fruit of joy. And it’s infectious. You can’t be around somebody that is joyful and remain sad.
The Fruit of Peace
There is no substitute for peace. I’m talking about the peace of God that passes all understanding, that garrisons about your heart and mind in Christ Jesus. The kind of peace that can bring stability and calm in the midst of a swirling conflict. If you’ve ever experienced this, you know how supernatural it is.
But the thing I want you to see is it’s a fruit that affects other people. This isn’t something that just touches your life. (Remember, the fruit is not primarily for us, it’s for others.) You see, like joy, peace is infectious.
The Fruit of Patience
The King James calls it “long-suffering,” but we know it better as a quality called patience. This fruit literally describes the ability to be constant in the face of changing circumstance. In other words, consistency.
No matter how much pressure is on you, you remain the same when you have the fruit of patience. You’re what the Bible calls “firmly rooted and grounded.” Not moved by circumstance.
This isn’t just a matter of sweating the situation out until the Lord resolves it for you. I’m not talking about hanging on by your toenails until there is a miracle of some sort. That’s not it. This is a fruit of the Spirit. It’s a calm assurance that God’s going to produce the answer in your life and you’re going to wait on Him until hell freezes over if necessary. Because only quitters lose in the kingdom of God.
There is a way to hang in there gracefully through the fruit of patience.
The Fruit of Gentleness
Other translations render this word as “kindness.” This is a fruit I personally must monitor on a consistent basis. Sometimes when I get in a hurry, I can become a little abrupt or sharp with people. This is simply something I have to work on.
It’s not that I don’t have love in my heart for them. It may not even be that I’m in a bad mood. I might actually be joyful, but when there are lots of things to do, kindness and tact can quickly fall by the wayside in one’s dealings with other people.
That’s why I am so thankful that kindness is one of the things God’s Word will produce in our lives if we will cultivate it. And it must be there if you’re going to move into the will of God for your life.
The Fruit of Goodness
What the King James translation calls “goodness” many other translations call “generosity.” The Greek word is agathosune and it literally means beneficence — which is a little-used word that means to give freely and liberally.
Generosity is a powerful fruit of the spirit. You could start out the stingiest old buzzard that ever lived, but once the seed of God’s Word is sown in your heart, it will change you. If you cultivate it, you will find yourself becoming a generous person.
Let me tell you, until you become generous you’re not going to move into God’s highest and best. You are simply not going to do it. That’s why it’s so vital to measure and monitor your level of generosity. It’s fruit that you must examine in your own life.
The Fruit of Faith
Most translations correctly render this word “faithfulness.” This isn’t referring to the kind of faith that comes from hearing the Word. This is faithfulness and it means: “committed to a task” or “loyalty.”
Can your wife or husband count on you? Can your kids count on you? Are you somebody that is committed to seeing the best, and you’re not going to give up no matter what? Are you loyal to a fault?
These are important questions because God honors loyalty. You see, it’s easy to be loyal to somebody when they’re a star. But when they fall on hard times, are you still going to be loyal? Will you still be available to minister to them?
Loyalty. Commitment. That’s what faithfulness is. Is that fruit evident in your life?
The Fruit of Meekness
Don’t get the wrong idea about meekness just because it rhymes with weakness. They are very different concepts. Meekness is simply a reference to humility — a recognition of your fallibility without God.
A lot of people have the wrong idea about humility. It doesn’t mean groveling in the dirt proclaiming how unworthy you are. It is an acknowledgement that without God you can’t do anything worth doing, but with God, you can do all things. In Christ, you’re more than a conqueror through Him who loved you. This is what meekness is. It is a determination to give God the glory and others the credit.
There’s nothing good any of us can do without the Lord in our lives. When you are manifesting the fruit of meekness, you put no confidence in your own flesh but have all the confidence in the world in the Jesus who lives in you.
Check your meekness level by asking yourself, “Where am I placing my confidence?”
The Fruit of Temperance
Temperance literally means “self control.” This is a powerful and important fruit of the Spirit. To fulfill everything God has called you to do, you’re going to have to be able to say “no” to your flesh. Without the fruit of self-control being consistently manifested in your life, this is next to impossible.
Your flesh wants to run the show. It likes to be in the driver’s seat. Frankly, the place this is most evident for many of us is at the dinner table. Most Christians don’t have terrible problems with drugs or alcohol. But when it comes to other physical appetites such as food, sleep, comfort or sex — they have a real battle on their hands.
How much control do you have over self? Without the fruit of temperance, you don’t. It handles you.
You’ll Know by the Fruit
Each of the fruits of the Spirit can be used as a measuring rod for evaluating where you are in God. As we’ve seen, Jesus said, “you’ll know them by the fruit.” And this is your only reliable measure of whether or not you’re living a life that “glorifies your Father in heaven.”
If you’ve been wondering why things aren’t working out for you as you’d like. If you’ve been puzzled by the fact that your prayers aren’t getting the results you used to experience. It’s time to measure your fruit.
Because if the fruit isn’t there, nothing else will be. Make sure you’re reaping the seven harvests of a fruitful Christian.

Hearing the Voice of the North American Indian!

Hearing the Voice of the North American Indian!

Hearing the Voice of the North American Indian!

You know, here is a thought: I hate racism. Whether a brutally oppressive white man, or a bitter black man wanting vengeance, it all reeks of pride, hatred, murder, bitterness, anger, rage, and wickedness. We must rise up in honor, to become who God created us to be. To love, respect, and seek to understand one another’s unique gifts, to build bridges instead of walls.

The cure for racism is still Jesus, reconciling us into covenant with God, through His cross and His blood. Although God sees and understands different skin colors and cultures, He is not preferential to black, white, red, or yellow men. We each bleed red blood.

God is not pro-black, white, red: He is looking for covenant men. Sons and daughters that will accept His offer of royal adoption! People who will accept royal rank, privilege, and eternal destiny, not of this earth, rather, heavenly citizenship.

Yet there is a thought today, that will not leave me.

Though there is still much work to be done in destroying racism between the black and white man in the United States, battles have been fought against slavery – there was a Civil War over this!

Then, my generation saw Martin Luther King Jr raise his voice against the hand of white oppression, and many of us paid a great price to see schools integrated, and social justice and an attempt at equality in the workplace.

Yet, as I study the plight of the Red Man here in America, and I study the histories of myriad First Nations peoples, I read of horrors untold, injustices, murders, and treacheries that, if they were not true, would be unbelievable in this great land, home of the free and the brave, with supposed freedom, liberty, and justice for all…

“Congress Granted Citizenship to All Native Americans Born in the U.S.
June 2, 1924
Native Americans have long struggled to retain their culture. Until 1924, Native Americans were not citizens of the United States. Many Native Americans had, and still have, separate nations within the U.S. on designated reservation land. But on June 2, 1924, Congress granted citizenship to all Native Americans born in the U.S. Yet even after the Indian Citizenship Act, some Native Americans weren’t allowed to vote because the right to vote was governed by state law. Until 1957, some states barred Native Americans from voting”

As I study, pray, and listen to Holy Spirit for His heart with respect to the American Indian, I find myself dwelling on this recurring thought:

The black man has had a war fought to end slavery, and his voice has been heard to some degree in the Civil rights movement in the 1960’s, but the voice of the Indian has never been heard!

It has been muted, muffled, muzzeled and silenced from main line Media, and in generally omitted entirely from US History texts in our schools.

The devastation and tragedy of the First Nations peoples of the United States is a story as yet untold, a very shameful chapter in this great land and nation.

The question screaming inside of me is this: ‘Who will be their voice?”

Who will tell their story?

Jesus is alive!

Heaven is real!

Those great peoples of our ancestors, still live before the throne of God, and I believe that God Himself, is now about to take up the cause of the red man in America.

This, will be the thing, that brings healing back to this land, as justice, understanding, love, and acceptance is brought to these people, who have suffered horribly here, for many generations….

There is a cry I hear from heaven: ‘Red Man Rising!”

Let’s Pray:

‘Father: Open the eyes of America, all people, to understand, and to embrace the First Nations peoples of this country. Give us eyes to see, a heart to understand their pain, their culture, language, honor, traditions, and the ways that you Jesus have visited them in the past. Somehow God, heal their hearts, their lands, and ours, where we have lacked so much, in the rejection of the gifts you have given them. Make impossible wrongs, somehow right, through your cross and shed blood Jesus! Deliver us from our blindness, our foolishness, our pride and foolishness of way, and somehow reconcile us! Give us grace to see and hear truth, and to turn from our wickedness and treacherous ways, and forgive and have mercy upon us, for our great sin in Your sight! Somehow, Holy Spirit, visit each and every Indian tribe here, and heal, restore, reveal Your love, and give them courage to be able to forgive us, that somehow we might walk before You in honor, respect, dignity, strength, humility, and love and truth. Let their stories be told, restore to them their voice in the land! I ask this Father, in Your great name Lord Jesus, Amen…’