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You Are Qualified

Jesus can revolutionize your life and world view. The idea of grace in its fullness characterizes the very nature of Jesus and changes our concept of the worth of humanity. Our world view in the past has been filtered through religion, which tainted our ability to accept those that would not qualify to be a part of our family. All the while hoping that the outcast and the freaks would conform to our image so that we would be more comfortable with them among us. After all we don’t want that kind of person to representing us, right? How ugly is that, how sad, bland, boring and comfortable.

In the old covenant only the high priest could go into the holy of holies in the presence of God. The high priest were the very upper crust, the closest to perfect that existed. They were the only ones worthy to even attempt to meet with God and even they would drop dead if they did not fully qualify. How frightening, how intimidating, how confident, how self assured would you have to be to attempt a journey into the presence of God?

The magnificent exchange was that the very God that the high priest feared, the God that reigned down manna from heaven and whose presence lived in the form of Shekinah glory behind the veil had a plan all along to come to us. To go to the darkest places and the deepest earth to identify with us. The very God we feared became one with those who would never qualify. Because what we failed to admit is that no matter how hard any of us try, none of us can ever qualify. It is only by grace through faith in this man Jesus Christ.

So you see, it’s not a matter of qualifying to get to God, it’s a matter of God qualifying to get to us. Who am I to disqualify anyone? Who am I to claim Christ death returns insufficient on anyone’s behalf. God wanted us all along. He wanted us to admit our dependence on him all along. So if you are an outcast, freak or classified weirdo Jesus came to you, identified with you and brought you freedom, grace, and love. Not freedom from who you are, but freedom from having to be who you’re not. We are all dependent on him, we require him, we thirst for him and in him we find our life. Run to him, don’t be afraid!

Hebrews 4:14-16, Romans 5:8, 2 Corinthians 12:9, 2 Corinthians 5:19, Ephesians 3:19

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Churchy Things…Is It Really Walking in the Spirit?

Walking in the spirit doesn’t mean doing churchy things. Doing churchy things can and often is very very fleshy. You know as well as I that the more you do the more you feel you have to do. If you pray an hour you feel two is better. If you give there is always more needed and if you go to classes there is always another class to take. Then have you ever tried to step away from these things? Yikes watch out because forget what you have done it’s a perpetual state of do do and give me, give me, give me. This is the life of your everyday enthusiastic church goer. This life is exhausting!

When your churchy actions are done to gain something from God or even keep something bad from happening then you are depending on what you do and that is walking in the flesh.  By definition walking in the flesh is dependance on you and your actions and walking in the spirit is dependence on Christ, who He is and what He has already done.

Walking in the spirit is very simply resting in the finished work of Christ that has already been given to you when you believe. That includes righteousness, favor and blessing. All of this in Christ now, today without doing a single churchy thing. It is faith and rest “in Him” and what He already accomplished. See “you” died with Christ (Colossians 2:20, Romans 6:8, 2 Corinthians 5:14) and then Galatians 2:20 says he gave us Christ life and it’s out of His life that we live. Do you think God is counting how many times Christ is going to church or taking communion? No way, Jose! And His life is your life. That is the life of grace instead of law.

This isn’t laziness or doing nothing, this is the capacity to actually be more productive doing what you were put on this planet to do. It’s the most natural way to live (as a spirit being) and it is all from a place of rest.

Now before you run to FB to set me straight, think of the story of Rachel and Leah. Jacob fell in love with Rachel and worked for seven long hard years to have her. In Hebrew Rachel means “ewe or lamb”. So Jacob worked for the lamb (see the picture). Only when you work to gain the lamb you wake up with Leah. What! After seven years of hard labor Jacob woke up on the wedding night with Leah. Leah in Hebrew means “weary”. That is a dirty rotten trick, but it happened. And that is what you get when you work for the lamb you get weary. After that Laban gives Rachel to Jacob and Jacob works seven years because he has her. So you can work to get and end up weary or you can work because you have and end up at rest. God’s plan is good!

This story illustrates to us that when you work to get you will end up weary. Or you can realize that the lamb is yours, that He loves you already and gave His life as you and for you and to you. The truth is you will get more done from love than from fear and obligation.  It isn’t about your churchiness but about His life in you.

Commentary

Great Big Buts

I always hear Christians talk about God’s grace and love for everyone but it seems to always be followed by a great big “but”. It’s like, God loves people “but” underneath it all they’re really thinking of the things you need to change. Like the way you dress and what you watch and how you talk and by the way you need to stop being so nice to those people who are clearly living against the truth, who by the way God loves too if they would only stop being how they are.
The name of that great big “but” is JUDGEMENT. John 12:31 says Jesus took our judgement. The truth is believers need to get rid of their “buts”. I do not like those “buts” and I cannot lie. God loves you period, end of story, nuff said.