“The Spirit Himself bears witness with our spirit that we are children of God” – Romans 8;16, ESV
Has it ever occurred to you that there is something deeper that the mind? Living in a western mindset causes us to examine most things from the mind, in the courtroom of reason.
Even those of us who call on the name of Jesus, often relate to God solely by our mind. We experience Jesus from a third-person relationship. By this I mean that we gather information about Jesus, His life and the Bible, but often neglect a first-person experience.
I notice it in our songs when we sing about Jesus rather than to Him. I often wonder why the song writer remains in the third person. Are they simply enthralled by the knowledge about Him rather than with Him face to face?
When I sing such songs, it feels as though Jesus is not in the room – as though He is far away, say, in heaven, and we are singing about the concept of God, or redemption or some other aspect of our new life in Jesus. It doesn’t feel as though Jesus is right in front of us and we are singing directly to Him.
“Young and old shall prophesy and have dreams and visions” – The Apostle Peter in Acts 2:17
One such fulfillment of this verse happened to me in 2004. Over a period of 6 months, I saw a ripple effect vision on three occasions while I prayed. The Holy Spirit has given me visions for over 40 years. They appear out of nowhere as an imagine in my mind – quite unexpectedly.
Although I prayed each time that I saw this ripple effect, no interpretation came. Then one day, while walking in Nashville, TN, I saw a piece of trash on the ground and the Spirit spoke to me – “Beau, pick it up.”
Thinking that I had a fertile imagination, I promptly ignored the thought. Then, with great urgency in the tone, the Voice repeated – “Pick it up!”
I am amazed at how much we neglect the greatest source of power in our lives – Prayer. Are we just lazy? No! The answer is much simpler, but deeper. It is an issue of the heart and the heart is profoundly deep.
Preachers try many tactics to get us to pray. Some stir our emotions to motivate us. They employ stories from the Bible or real life to inspire us. Sometimes, they go to the dark side and use guilt to shame us into action. It works for a time, but our prayers quickly fade with our emotions.
Abel was the 2nd son of Adam and Eve. He was a shepherd while his older brother, Cain, a farmer. His story is short and sad and he has the unfortunate distinction of being the first human to be murdered. Not much is spoken of Abel in the Bible apart from this original account in Genesis 4. Yet there is a remarkable quality and characteristic about him which few ponder. Abel’s voice still speaks.
When Cain murdered him, God confronted Cain saying “the voice of your brother’s blood is crying out to me from the ground.” Jesus called Abel a prophet and laid the guilt of the shedding of the blood of all the prophets (from Abel to Zechariah) upon Jesus’ own generation. Continue reading →
I love the discipleship process that Jesus initiated. The utterly amazing fact that He took 12 VERY ORDINARY men who had little to no education and these 12 men ignited a fire across the world that remains to this day.
There are several things that Jesus did that are key to the success of His followers. One in particular is that He invested His time and Himself.
The Apostle Paul likewise picks up on this in 2 Corinthians 12: 15 “I will most gladly spend and be expended for your souls….” Unlike the popular preachers of today, who fill the airwaves with their pronouncements of God’s word and too often fill their pockets with the dollars sent in by the naive, Paul laid his life down on behalf of others. He expended himself. I do not think this concept is understood by American churches.Continue reading →