God is crazy – continued
Ok you don’t have to read what was already sent but I’m continuing from last time. I’ve actually had a seriously bad 2 weeks some might think, but spiritually I know my God is a Shepherd, a Redeemer and a strong Tower. A Rock. Solid. A Cornerstone (I’ll get round to that one one day. Cornerstone.. Very important). So I’ve not been as free to send out these as I’d like. I’m actually behind by 3 devotionals
- Healing Hand of God (inspired by Jeremy Camp gospel song by that title. I already told you guys my worship music are my other prayers with God, I personalize the lyrics everytime. Sometimes the lyrics save my soul. And that’s no exaggeration.)
- The Pope Has a Confessor (inspired by my friend, my co-conspirator, my bishop Vezamazulu Gwebu who God used to give me a revelation and a powerful blessing in a totally arb conversation, that even though ppl especially spiritual leaders seem like they got it together, we ALL, and especially those guys need extra prayer, me included, I mean despite our denominational issues… Even the Pope knows he’s a sinner and what about me? I don’t even have the right to be sending out these emails to you speaking about the love of God, but He is merciful and He qualifies and calls and He chooses and He anoints and I’m anointed and I know it.)
- Jesus Skaterboy (inspired by my friend Lyndell who is part our 4Life team with others like Neli, Kurt, Dave, Tools etc. She was sharing her struggles with how God treats her verses how she treats herself. How bout you? Is there a difference? Why?…… Preaching to myself)
So I’ll send the above out as soons as God allows me to be done incubating. But He gave me another this morning. As I said I’ve been overworked and a lot more mistake prone at work than usual cause of the pressure. I’ve upsetting a few clients as a result, running behind on deadlines etc. But God has somehow covered us. Today was no different. Some of our clients are super happy, others are hanging in there others are like “mercy!”. But they’ve all been good to us cause God covers us. My partner as well. Frustrated with me sometimes, the economy etc (he’s our rainmaker and finance guy) so we’ve all been under a little pressure so mistakes don’t help.
And today as I was thinking about our situation, I put in Israel New Breed (yeah yeah I know you feel me if you listen to Israel you’re blessed, uplifted, close-to-the-feet-and-covered-by-angels-wings child of God).
I put it in to encourage myself. Remember I said my praise and worship is my prayer? I struggle to pray for myself and all I pray these days for myself is about seeing, and being the presence of, the shekinah glory of God. Well instead of speaking to my situation. God showed me His glory this morning. And as His presence descended over me softly quietly gently, He gave me a revelation and totally ignored that I was tired, discouraged, unhappy, frustrated, angry (I’m a team leader so sometimes the mistakes arent mine but I have to bear responsibility for the quality of any work that comes out my office – technical and creative director). I was almost feeling down, but I’ve been surprisingly calm and at peace with a lot of stuff than I usual am. Though still anxious at the same time. God is working on me on that. So today I started talking to Him about work and was listening to Israel New Breeds song “Surely Surely” which is more an intro followed by If Not for Your Grace. Then He totally ignored my sitch and hit me with this very basic revelation that to me is SOOO phenomenal but so necessary. God can reduce Himself to utter sublime simplicity and He can be superbly complex. He can be in here, in me, inside! “With Jesus in Vessel”-type thing. And He can be so OutThere that He seems ginormous!
But today He cradled me gently. I could literally feel Him put His arm around my shoulder as if He were taller and sort of hugging me from the side while I was meditating on this issue of Grace. So He ignores my issues but speaks to my heart. And as the Holy Spirit explained about Jesus while I was listening to If not for your Grace, yes with a capital G, I meditated on the songs lyrics.
Firstly the intro says “Surely Surely, Mercy and goodness, shall follow me all the days of my life. Where would I be if it were not for His grace carrying thru every season”
It sounds silly but as a concept mercy and goodness have no actions. An idea cant follow you. Only something alive can make the decision to follow you every time you turn (turn from the straight and narrow). Only something ALIVE can decide to treat you with goodness & mercy, treat you right (“my man/woman treats me right/good”) especially when you do wrong (follow me all the days of my life Psalms 23). Inspite of your betrayals, let downs, disappointments, this “goodness&mercy” just keeps following you.
And it hit me. I have prayed before “Lord You are merciful” but till today it never dawned on me that I could pray “Lord You are Merciful”. The embodiment of mercy, and full of mercy. Jesus said to the rich young ruler (Matthew) “Why do you call me Good (Teacher)?! There is only One who is Good!”. Christ meant that both as a statement and a question. — Are you calling me God when you call me Good cause that’s the only way you can speak to someone and be correct. “I am more than a teacher or rabbi”. To call a being good its like walking up to someone and calling them “Holy Rabbi!” or “Pure Rabbi” or “Righteous Rabbi”. And as usual Jesus always passes glory on to His Father (there is only One) whereby He always wants glory to go to Dad (our real DAD) first.
If only we were like that. E.g if any of you think hey andrew is cool. No don’t compliment me and leave it there, Bongani is a tight youth leader. And there is a benefit when it comes to following a man of God. Any youth at Sandton is being sheltered by his and His anointing. Give Bongani praise as well. And yes it is good to acknowledge the anointing God gives people and be ok with it. Its EXACTLY the same as the soldier who addressed Elijah as “man of God”. He was telling the truth. Since God is glorious and He is our Dad, whether you accept it or not you will be glorified in other peoples eyes when His goodness starts to leak or pour out of your heart. The same way when people see a prince they see majesty and honour. Yes his father is king so they walk in fear around him. And they bow because he is a living representation of the seal of the King. He is the king in the flesh but by proxy and substitute. When the prince speaks it is law, its promised, word is his bond, unless the king over turns it. And remmember king and prince are men of honour, it would very serious for the prince to say or do the wrong thing and very very serious loss of prestige and face for the king and prince both if the king had to overturn something the prince said or did.
THAT is who we are. So that is why in Ephesians it says that the law of God can be summarised by loving others more than ourselves. That we esteem our brother more/higher than ourselves. Do you understand how deep and intimate and how honourable and how in AWE the word esteem is trying to get us to look at other believers. Even and especially when they don’t deserve it? Why does God honour you and youre a sinner and your fellow believers don’t get honour and respect from you cause they messup sometimes? Are you going to go and demand and throw in jail those who owe you when the King cancelled your details and got you out of jail? I’ll keep using our captain as an example. When you praise another human being IN the Spirit, what you’re doing in english is encouraging them. Psyching them up.
And they smile and shake their head and go God is good. But they also feel good. Encouraged because in the Spirit people speak GOD’s assessment of where you are with Him regardless of how you feel about yourself and if youre on the right track or if youre doing well or not. Not to be puffed up. But to acknowledge YES my Father has worked in my heart. He has transformed and is continuing to transform me. I AM clean, pure, holy righteous, beautiful, majestic, honorable, proud (not egotistical but erect in stature and with a presence like proud mountains that stand the test of time because they are made of the hard bones of the earth).
THIS IS WHO YOU ARE.
When you encourage or exhort (psyche up) spiritually we rightly say you are SPEAKING INTO THEIR LIFE. Cause sometimes what you’re speaking may not necessarily be accurate but not a lie either. You’re helpng their hearts see the potential in them God put there. Planting a seed. Guys lets plant more stuff in each other. You increasing their faith, you are using the Holy Spirit to speak words that open their heart values a bit or a lot more (depending on their faith!) and allowing the Holy Spirit to POUR MORE Jesus into them. Those streams of life-giving waters that overflow. See when you have God you cant hide it or keep it in. And that’s why a real believer takes the compliment, smiles sweetly (the way Bongani does). Feels the Goodness of God. THEN. They don’t stop there, after RECEIVING IT (and more of us should receive it!) they don’t stop there, they then look at their Father in their hearts where people cant see and pass it on to their Father. Because by the way they are not smiling at what you said. A true believer gives God, doesn’t rob God, but gives God the glory He deserves, and the smile comes out because in the Spirit they are looking God right in the eye and telling Him just by smiling they way you would tell your lover with a smile “You…. Are…. Tite!” But externally all you hear is God is good and you see a smile and you mistakenly walk away thinking sometimes that they smiling only cause of what you said. Sometimes we forget we’re witnessing in someones eyes or on someones face the same intimacy that happens between two people that’s not explicit but deep enough, embarassing enough to make pple say “man get a room!”. Sometimes the shaking of the head is so good inside, so deep, so fulfilling that all you can do is chuckle and shake your head with no word. Not cause you’re saying no its not about me. You’re syaing more, your head shaking is cause it feels so good, so Spiritual that you cant handle and you shake with skin-hair-standing, spine-tingling Holy Spirit pleasure. I’m praying for us all a time in our church and especially in our homes and families when you can be having worship so good that you become “slain in the Spirit”. When the presence of God is so real, so HEAVY, that you can stand up or breathe and you’re literally left lying on the ground in a faint. Nothing to say, cant barely breathe! All you can do for the life of you is just soak Him in. Drown in Him. To the point where you think you’re dying with pleasure. You’re time has come. Jesus must just call it a day for your life. If anyone of us were to ever experience that, we would be truly MAD. Just between 12 to 100 ppl like that on the earth at one time and the end would have to come quickly. And Revelation says there are 144 thousand (symbolically is a fraction) ppl like that coming, where God’s spirit will be poured out like never before. Like coming to each person with a huge tub not bucket, tub and totally emptying it over you head to toe soaked dripping sogging wet with the Holy Spirit. That’s Joel 2. God is promising that His Spirit is gonna be so hectic on earth, in ALL of human history the universe even has never seen God pour Himself our like that. Its gonna be divine UTTER Chaos. I’m praying a moment, even just a moment, like that comes to a MAD programme or prayer band or a worship session. That we can just be slain. They say slain because its so deep it kills you.
Now in those moments remember for a true believer the smile aint for you who complimented. Just the thank you. The feel good-inside part is for Dad. The problem with people is they forget to be IN Christ and allow Christ to BE IN THEM. They forget to hear the compliment and turn and look at Jesus inside them and smile. HE WILL THEN AUTOMATICALLY put into motion the necessary components of humility. Its like people are microwaves. Along comes someone who sees something good in you and they give you a compliment (they put something inside you). IF you are in Christ, you the microwave, you cant turn yourself on and off. You didn’t initiate the compliment, now how on earth are you expecting yourself to know what to do with it. The compliment was external. Let God handle it. Jesus IN You will automatically smile, feel good that you have just heard the truth about yourself, acknowledge how far God has brought you. Then He will turn on the microwave or basically pass on the glory to His Father. Who sad that we cant feel comfortable or recognise how awesomely God has cleaned you up.
As humans we forget to pass it on. Because we’re Jesus lovers, this part of sinful selves bothers us deeply to the core. So we throw the compliment back into your face and no no its not me its God. Hold on! How will you increase or be encouraged if you can’t receive the Spirit (hope you got that). Your problem is pride not that the person complimenting you is lying. Are they? And if they are telling the truth, what do you accomplish for God by saying “no…blah blah”. Wrestle with that piece a while. You’re issue is you don’t put the compliment into the right place (God is good) and you don’t pass it on (turn to God in everything, even in the middle of a moment or in between words in a conversation!). You were created to spiritually multitask!!! So say thank you and God is good somehow in one sentence. Do both don’t leave one out. Acknowledge and receive. Speak your faith.
Ok ending part.
Israel’s tracks speak of “something got broken, distorted and disconnected at an early age. As bad as you wanna hear God say ‘You are mine’ THERES A WAR going on inside. This is not to say you messed up or put you on blast. And when the foosteps are chasing you down again. This is to say WHEN YOU LOOK AT YOUR SINS you cry out ‘Surely Surely He is Holy!’ ”. This time I want you to look back and see goodness and mercy FOLLOWING you all the days of your life.
Can you see the faith, the logic the belief in those lyrics? Can you see how a person who believes in God, in Jesus Christ the poor Carpenter, the majestic Michael, the poetic creator Word. Can you see a true believer turns to look at their mistakes, weaknesses and shortcomings and goes to WAR against them, speaks against them and responds to depression and guilt with the MADness of the gospel (for the gospel is foolishness to those are lost, but the POWER of God to those who are BEING saved). Speak against your hurt and your fear, your hatred your anxiety your lack of self-esteem with WHO GOD IS. ITS NEVER ABOUT YOU. But God does promise you were created for Good (for Him). You are a work of art merely work-in-progress. You are Picasso, a Mona Lisa, on an unfinished canvass. You concerto in the middle progressions. You’re a song, with unfinished verses. How are you a work of art? Because God is HOLY! So what youre a sinner! GOD is Holy! So what you’ve failed before, don’t even pick yourself up off the floor, that’s still works oriented legalistic doing stuff to get into heaven gospel. And its not the truth! (Jesus skaterboy devotional coming soon that speaks to don’t pick urself up). Stay on the floor but look at God and believe you may have failed in the past BUT GOD IS HOLY. HE will rescue, HE will cover you with His righteous right hand. He is a strong tower you never built but found yourself living in! How can a failure now turn around and pick themselves up? Lol man people are funny. But its ok. Its because they’ve (we’ve) been fed a warped gospel. GOD PICKS YOU UP. Which is why David, a murderer, liar, adulterer, short-tempered, egotistical, war-mongering, God-clinging and Messiah-praising, giant-slaying, poetic pslam writing sinner can turn to God and shout “I look to the hills!”, “Vindicate me” and “I have never seen the righteous beg” and “Arise Oh God and judge the earth” “Lord the wicked abound and multiple, where is Your salvation?!”. How dare he?! Well He must have had a gospel many modern-day Christians have been robbed of! Ma we break God’s heart. Lickily He can stand a billion times over and for thousands of years. You and cut ppl off qwik!
So the final intimate knowledge God shared with me was about Grace. Capital G. Man just go get this album but I’ll include the lyrics at the end to If not for your grace.
So I’m listening to Israel going on about “grace that restores, grace that redeems”. And it (He) suddenly hit me . But grace is just an idea! How can grace redeem (pick me up off the ground quit trying to get up Andrew you aint all that tite thun!)?!! How can grace restore which means re-make me into the image of Adam, a being perfect and capable of not only standing in the very presence of God amidst the fiery stones like the angels, but capable of comprehending intimately and interacting with God with no flaw! That’s a faith statement! Restore us to what people?! Adam conversed with creator of the universe and I refuse to believe He dumbed it down, I believe Adam was so STUPENDOUSLY awesome that the entire courts of heaven stood back in awe after God breathed into the earth (Adham) and He stood Up! Think of all the diversity and beauty of landscapes and animals and plants and God makes a being that embodies that and all its potential. Adham was the personification of how beautiful the earth was and was going to be, with a sprinkle of godliness, a covering of the trinity, clothed in the bright raiment of just Godness. Proud (not egotistical) Princely! Majestic. The very image of the fullGodhead. A simulcrum. A scion! A completed inspiring breath-taking WORK OF ART. God didn’t downgrade. God has no grade! What God makes is only perfect, and very good! When Adam stood up, the universe looked up and said to God “How, how, how, Batong!” “Yo, Yo, Yo, Yo! Nkosi Yami!”
When Adam stood they didn’t see a creation and creature an animation only. They saw a son! A being capable of truly representing the thought, character and motives of God whereever he went. Whose very bearing or body stature and the way he carried himself was like God if He he were to put Himself into a body. His brow depicting wisdom, his eyes windows to a soul burning the the flame of the Holy Spirit (that’s Revelation). His skin a burnished bronze because it was clothed in physical glory. A being that if you walked up to him and said or asked anything. The response would be a direct translation of the will of God. How? Am I going too far? No remember Adam was created without sin, but before he lived, God breathed intimacy, life, love, passion, depth, intelligence, spiritual potential, expansive wonder, grace, beauty and wholesome goodness into Adams chest. No other being on earth got that. They were just popped up! Adam got the Kiss. And the Hand to help him Stand. Read Daniel and Revelation. That Scifi version of Jesus is what we’re going to be RESTORED, reverted, REWINDED into. Adam got taught how to speak like God by God for God with God. Adam got that connection so deep telepathy is a pathetically poor attempt by man’s imagination to reminisce on what we had! Telekenisis (moving of objects with thought) is a very poor imitation. Ellen white writes in the Spirit that she saw Adam and Eve in the garden in vision she saw them manipulating things without hands. The bent the earth to their will in concert with God’s will. Remember there was nothing we couldn’t accomplish if we put our minds to it AFTER the flood as a sinful ppl who made God repent He made us! And before the flood we pinnacled intellectually and sinfully. We were up there. We made God take notice of whatever we did. But that’s nothing compared to Adam and Eve. Even understood God so deep, she knew she should that tree! Adam could hear God’s voice directly and be able stand it! Name for me ANY prophet in the Bible after Adam able to stand up in God’s presence on his his own two legs when God isnt even talking yet? Name any?! Do you realise how deep it is to WALK WITH God. You’re talking about a creator who breathes out stars when He’s being careful. You’re talking about a being who calls to the 4-day dead carefully and rotting flesh and bones respond with new life and complete restoration when He’s being polite. A being who with a shout of one word (most probably His name, that’s not Biblical I’m just guess what Michael shouts is His real name cause God has never told it to us. All God’s names are descriptions). With one shout Michael total and completely destroys the earth and remakes it. One sentence created the universe. Let there be. Adam could “get” this God we talk about. But we downsize him and Adam too often. When God says restore He’s “so not playing”. Adam was truly awesome. When he sees what became of us after sin you honestly think he’s gonna weep because we became short?!!! Are you serious?! I mean come on?!!!!
Anywho, so how then can an idea pick you up (redeem) and and then re-make (restore) you from scratch into Adam’s stature again? (1 Cor 15). Sometimes sermons are just nice ideas or Bible studies are philosophical instead of life changing . I’ve given a couple of those, God is Merciful. How can grace as just an idea have a plan for your life, to meet you at a specific point in space-time, and get you to agree with alter call and get dunked into water like the people this weekend (lets praise God a sec on that one, He’s awesome). How can you “RECEIVE” an idea?! Think through that. Carefully. Grace brought you here. It covered you. Grace cleansed you. And its just an idea? You’re kidding. Grace capital G, just like God IS love. God is Grace. Grace (Hebrews 4:12Hebrews 4:12
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Grace.. It causes things to change in your heart. Grace IS God. And not the Law, but Grace, was the ONLY way, God could redeem and restore. The Law is a description of God’s motives like the beatitude. Its a mark. The Law is like a look-out-point at God’s window where the view is who God is. But to save a fallen stiff necked hard-hearted people, He had no other mind-blowing secret weapon with which to beat sin better than God as Grace. That’s why the ark is a throne. Under the “Mercy Seat” is the Law. In other words, God loved you so much He literally put your well-being, you’re needs above Himself.
Listen to that. You’re more important to God than He is to Himself. Ha! He laid it down. You’re being ok is more important to God than being alive. Forget the adoration of angels. You’re important to the entire trinity, than they’re being alive is to themselves. How that works I don’t know. All I know is that the Bible says the Father was IN Christ reconciling Himself to the world. The Father loves me just as much as Jesus does. And if we were to let Jesus say that, He’s probably say to us, My Father loves you more than He loved me being alive and having me with Him, so He sent me to die. He sent me to beaten whipped and killed. And I NEVER DID ANYTHING WRONG (no wonder the prodigals older brother was upset but not Christ who is first-born!). Jesus would explain how Holy God is. That He took His own Son and sent Him to die in the worst way possible. If you were to crucify a human being today they would ironically and sillyly say you’re being “IN-”humane. Cruel and inhuman punishment. Amnesty Intl would on your case so quick you’d be at the TRC before you could AMEN. God did that to His Son. “My Boy come here, see those guys over there with the 10inch nails, the whips hammers and spears. Oh look my boy, I wantchu to go and lie down on that rough thorny piece of wood with the wounds your gonna have still bleeding and insanely painful and let them slam nails into your hands and feet through your flesh and bones.
Now I end by letting you read the lyrics. And mediate on this for real. Grace is alive, watching over you, protecting you, grace is in John 3:16John 3:16
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WP-Bible plugin so loving us that It came down to save. God didn’t send Grace to condemn the world but to save. John writes in the first chapter. So beautifully. And we beheld Him, full of grace and truth.
Why am I writing this?! I want to encourage someone in their prayer life. I want to inspire someone to find uplifting (literally) heavenly gospel music. I want to speak INTO someone’s worship. The way my mentors like our elders at church spoke into mind until some of my friends say my too-smart for my own denseness got it and it sank. My dream. My desire. Truly is…. that we as a people start turning around and using the adjectives we ascribe and put on God and make them real, alive and intentional and powerful. Lets ACCESS the Holy Spirit, and worship with words that are like magic in movies where people are just talking but things start to move and happen. As believers! Peter cautions and says, you children of God, Don’t even open your mouth, UNLESS it is as the Oracles of God. To translate, don’t open you’re mouth, unless it were as if the whole universe were waiting breathlessly before God’s throne for Him to say something at some really awesome important moment. But your standing just below His throne. He beckons to you, and leans over you, and people lean forward in anticipation waiting…for whats next and instead of speaking Himself, He gently nudges you forward with a smile and then you’re voice booms out across galaxies, past supernovas, skirting moons and planets, splitting atoms and washing over peoples minds, speaking on behalf of God with accuracy and authority. THUS SAYS HE who was from the beginning!!!…. You feel me? Lets access. Lets get into God’s heart. Lets have brave faith. Crazy worship. Mountain-moving little mustard seed faith. Jesus seems to be saying to me when I read this stuff, Andrew, this stuff aint hard. I just want to believe what I say for real. I just a moment of your heart. Just a piece of a second in your mind of UTTER, corner to corner belief like that soldier. Risk your heart Andrew. Put your faith on the line and JUST FOR MOMENT. Believe me.
I want someone, to actually start talking to God as if they really know who He is, they way you nod you’re head up and down as you look your friends in the eye and say, yeah… You look good. Its not a discussion. Its a statement. Lets make our adjectives statements. Lets make our praise alive with power. Lets TELL God who He is! Lets REMIND HIM of His wonder! Lets BEHOLD Him and become change (2 Cor). We arent changed by stressing or wishing we were changed. We become changed by seeing God! For WHO He really is. You how they sometimes, sometimes a person will see something in their lives and it changes them forever? I saw my friend changed by watching the wife he loves give birth to his daughter. He loved his wife before. Now He loves her different. He respects her on some “OTHER” level. Lets GO THERE!
Lord You are Merciful….
Lord YOU are Graceful
Lord YOU ALONE are Just
You are the only one who is KIND, GENTLE and PATIENT
There is NONE, like You….. NOT EVEN CLOSE!
Lord! You are GOD (as an adjective)
You are PERFECTION.
LOVING! BEAUTIFUL! AWESOME, TERRIBLE, MIGHTY! ALL MIGHTY!
Lord Give me Your Faith. Give me Your Righteouness.
Make a living breathing billboard of Your AWESOME GLORY
Make me a signpost of Your Purity
Make me a spectacle of Your Love
Let somebody see me and get some Jesus and get saved Father
Make me make You so Proud that You have to record it down somewhere
Make me the topic, the agenda of Your heavenly courts and meetings
Say something about me in the congregation of the mighty
Pray for me Yourself Holy Spirit! Pray over me. Don’t wait for me to want it . Just Pray!
Don’t consult me about changing my life, I’m You living sacrifice.
Do with me WHATEVER You will, because Your Will, Your Motives, Your Intensions Your Thoughts Oh God are absolutely utterly PERFECT
And the Devil is a liar, the non-believer is a fool who needs You
Make me really believe I am a son.
I will confess I am not even willing. I am hopelessly and completely lost. And ONLY YOU can Save me.
I am wicked without any redeeming qualities at all, BUT I am Your Child
I am Your Prince. I WALK in the Royal Court. I SIT at Your table Oh God! I FEAST in Your Presence. Your Own Hands Anoint my head with Oil.
I am so convinced its impossible to explain, how nothing can EVER separate me from the love of God.
Lyrics that inspired this ========
Where would I be
If not for your grace
Through every season
Where would I be
If not for Your grace
You came to my rescue
And I want to thank You
For Your grace
Grace that restores
Grace that redeems
Grace that releases
Me to worship
Grace that repairs
Visions and dreams
Grace that releases
People shalom on you all.