Two-Sided Salvation – part 5

The side of the state of man that is ‘unsaved’ is often accompanied by fear. Fear is not a natural state. We have to be indoctrinated to feel afraid, to reflect the mindset of an anxious world. It is our most formidable defense mechanism.

However, what is it defending us from? Pain. It is a pain that we seek to avoid at all costs. Fear tells us, ‘It’s coming! Run!’ Yet most of the time, what it is that we are running from is some imaginary thing we think might happen.

Fear keeps you from being still and facing the truth. It is not a helper; it’s a killer – often inflicting its host with anxiety, insomnia, ulcers, high blood pressure, heart attacks, strokes and cancer. Fear is the sum result of childhood conditioning which impresses upon you a sense being inadequate with regards to living life. It’s a state being immensely overwhelmed by false beliefs.

When you are in that state, you can never plant your feet firmly in reality, in the present moment, because you are always running away in your mind. Some people even try to hide in their ‘spiritual’ pursuits, paying attention to their rituals rather than opening themselves up for the transformation of the Holy Spirit.

There are many other distractions and addictions that we use to hide as well; but this robs us of the ability to see what we are truly up to, to stop and notice if fear is working for us. Not! When we let fear reign, we steep in denial regarding the innate goodness that God has molded into us. Often, we are given into despair.

The three primary fears are: the fear of death, of abandonment and of impermanence (change). The fear of death grows from a fear of the unknown, abandonment from a belief of being unacceptable, and change from a deep desire to be in control.

The answer to beating fear is the answer to living life. We need to hop over the fence to the side of salvation in order to connect to God through Christ. God has always been in control; we just have to connect with Him and He will make your life blossom by guiding you on the path that He gave you at birth:

Trust in the LORD with all your heart, and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways acknowledge Him, and He shall direct your paths. Pr. 3:5 – 7. NKJV

Ask Him to examine your soul and untie all the knots that you fettered yourself with. He’ll do that by revealing the truth of the wonder that you are, as well as expose the lies that you had heretofore believed in:

The spirit (conscience) of man is the lamp of the LORD, searching and examining all the innermost parts of his being. Pr. 20:27 AMP

God tells you that fear has nothing to offer you:

The fear of man brings a snare, but whoever leans on, trusts in, and puts his confidence in the Lord is safe and set on high. Pr. 29:25 AMP

How many fears will God remove?

I sought the LORD, and He answered me, and delivered me from all my fears. Ps. 34:4 NASB

All of them.

You don’t have to fear other people (which usually is a product of misunderstanding through poor communication. Indeed, you may only be reacting to the other person’s fear of you, because they haven’t seen God show up in your behavior):

When I am afraid, I will put my trust in You. In God, whose word I praise, in God I have put my trust; I shall not be afraid. What can mere man do to me? Ps. 56:3, 4. NASB

You don’t have to be afraid of evil. Christ did not come to tell us how be victorious over the satanic machinations in the world. He’s already doing the work. He just wants you to stay connected to Him:

Little children, you are of God [you belong to Him] and have already defeated and overcome them [the agents of the antichrist], because He who lives in you is greater (mightier) that he who is in the world. 1 Jn. 4:4 AMP

You can also put your past behind you because the blood of Christ has cleansed you of all transgressions, and you can now focus on the newfound love in your heart:

Do not [earnestly] remember the former things; neither consider the things of old. Behold, I am doing a new thing! Is. 43:18, 19. AMP

Being saved, you will now look forward to change. Why? It’s because you will now be connected to the only source of stability:

“For I am the LORD, I do not change…” Mal. 3:6 NKJV

And, you can take it to the bank that every change you will experience will be one that is sanctioned by God to bring you to the next step in your highest and best life.

Finally, the greatest perk of salvation is that you need not fear death any longer:

“Behold the tabernacle of God is with men, and He will dwell with them, and they shall be His people. God Himself will be with them and be their God. And God will wipe away every tear from their eyes; there shall be no more death, nor sorrow, nor crying.” Rv. 21:3, 4. NKJV

Praise God for His salvation!

Goodnight and God bless.

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February 09 2017 | experiencing god's love | No Comments »

God Grants Us The Joy Of Fearlessness

We are, above all things, afraid of pain. Thus, we live in fear of an inevitable part of life. In so doing, we experience pain frequently – mostly due to our beliefs about pain. We believe that anything that challenges our beliefs is a source of pain. Yet pain does not come from the challenge, it comes from our resistance to it.

It is our resistance that causes us to run from perceived pain, which only adds greater anxiety – the disease of an anxious world that has had the voices in the heads of its inhabitants bleating relentlessly that the world is a dangerous place and punishment awaits those who do not navigate it the ‘right way’ (according to its own dictates).

We run from our fear, not realizing we are generating it, so we always find ourselves falling back into it.

Yes, you were taught to be afraid, but all those teachings were lies that gave your life the apparent toxicity you fear. Naturally, you built walls of defense (which became prison walls).

LIFE IS NEUTRAL. It is you who are mistakenly biased. You can wipe out those biases by inviting your fears into your meditations as they pop up. First, meditate upon the word of God so that you know just how much He has got your back:

The LORD is my light and my salvation; whom shall I fear? The LORD is the defense of my life; whom shall I dread? Ps. 27:1 NASB

‘Do not tremble and do not be afraid; have I not long since announced it to you and declared it? And you are My witnesses. Is there any God besides Me, or is there any other Rock?’ Is. 44:8 NASB

Peace I leave with you; My [own] peace I now give and bequeath to you. Not as the world gives do I give to you. Do not let your hearts be troubled, neither let them be afraid. [Stop allowing yourselves to be agitated and disturbed; and do not permit yourselves to be fearful and intimidated and cowardly and unsettled.] Jn. 14:27 AMP

Fear not, for I am with you… Is. 43:5 NKJV

I sought the LORD, and He answered me, and delivered me from all my fears. Ps. 34:4 ESV

Do not be seized with alarm and struck with fear; only keep believing. Mk. 5:36 AMP

For God has not given us a spirit of fear, but of power and love and of a sound mind. 2 Tim. 1:7 NKJV

You are a hiding place for me; you preserve me from trouble; you surround me with shouts of deliverance. Ps. 32:7 ESV

For you have delivered my life from death, yes, and my feet from falling, that I may walk before God in the light of life and of the living. Ps. 56:13 AMP

[The Father] has delivered and drawn us to Himself out of the control of darkness and has transferred us into the kingdom of the Son of His love. Col. 1:13 AMP

“…for I am with you to save you and deliver you,” declares the LORD. Jer. 15:20 NASB

Are you feeling pumped up yet? You are invulnerable in God and Christ.

Now, we look at each fear in our meditation, see them for the lies that they are and replace those beliefs with new empowering convictions, which will change how you are being and will change your world. The only place fear lives is within you, but you can replace that fear with God:

There is no fear in love, but perfect love casts out fear. 1 Jn. 4:18 ESV

Just like we solve all our problems, we have to become aware of what we’ve been doing and choose to do different. We were masterful in the construction of our walls of defense. We cannot break them down with a simple frontal assault, because they were constructed to prevent that very thing. When you discover and neutralize your fears, you won’t have to hold up those walls any further.

Look first to your Life Story – the genesis of your fears. Always remember to bring kindness, love and compassion to yourself as you become aware of what you’ve been up to, without applying judgment. Take responsibility for your decisions and acts you’ve made in your blindness and remain vigorous in your inquiry for the reasons behind them. See if they contain any truth. When you take responsibility, you’re on your way to freedom.

Once you really see the falsity behind your heretofore-unquestioned beliefs, you’ll be able to uproot them, as well as tear down the rigid reality you built around them – that reality you’ve exhausted yourself trying to defend so that you won’t be made wrong.

Fear brings opportunity. If we sit with it and watch our reactions (all the ways we run), we can see how we might do the opposite and set ourselves free. All it takes is for you to remove the armor that you think is protecting you.

Trust your heart to compassionately and lovingly see you through. LIFE IS NOT SCARY. We make it scary because we are afraid of the unpredictability of life and of our inability to control it.

WE ARE NOT SCARY. Yet we believe we are because of our conviction that we are flawed in unacceptable ways – not!

Happiness will elude us as long as we hold onto the ways we do fear. Realize that our suffering is inseparable from the world’s suffering; apply unconditional acceptance, love, forgiveness and compassion to ourselves first, and then to all others. Stop the blaming, let go of the past and forget about the future.

Our lives only contain the problems that we say they have. Freedom from fear comes when we are willing to let go of what we think we know (giving up our false security), so that we can look at ourselves and our surroundings with new eyes. Whole new vistas will present themselves – filled with limitless opportunities that allow you to reinvent your possibilities from moment to moment.

Instead of fear, we can re-frame our view of life to one that embraces this frenzied string of uncertainties and remain open to the wonder of the next surprise. And, if life were a flowing stream of surprises, why would you worry about problems when you could never plan for a solution? Guess what? Life is the solution!

We are all works in progress, so there is no reason to make space for the unworkable notions of shame or embarrassment that gives birth to so many fears.

Knowing that life is unpredictable, it follows that our time with others is unknowable. Doesn’t it then make sense to treasure everyone in every moment instead of living with the fear that they may go away or waste time indulging in strife or discord? We can choose love over fear and remain fully embraced with those around us as a temporal gift while they are here and an eternal one in the heart when they are not.

We need to commit to letting our guard down, shutting our old selves down, and move into the opportune space of our new home – fearlessness.

Every time we feel a fear arise, we connect with God through Christ and go back to meditation to see what kind of strategy we have evoked to protect a wound that we haven’t brought to the light to be healed. We search for the meanings that elicit our response and ask ourselves, ‘What else in life are we resisting in this fashion? What has it cost us?’ Then, we change our thinking.

Life is what it is and it does what it does. No amount of fear will alter that. Fear is a tool we create for resisting life, even though it is totally ineffective in doing so. Those who are fearless accept life and remain aware of all the obstacles that appear to prevent them from living – never entertaining the notion that the obstacles consist of something they cannot handle. After all, they have God on their side.

They no longer judge themselves or others or brood over their mistakes. Should a blip occur, they look at why they committed them, drop any meanings at the root of them and jump headfirst back into the stream of life.

Fearless…
Goodnight and God bless.

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January 17 2016 | experiencing god's love | No Comments »

Characteristics Of A Life When God Is Absent – Part 3

This is the eighth in a series of posts beginning with How The Devil Stole Your Soul. We’ve heretofore considered the wiles of the adversary, especially with regards to how he leads you to distort your thinking to such an extent that your sense of self has become misshapen as well.

As a result, many people hold a disfigured picture of themselves up for continual critical examination by themselves and by the voice of their egos, to such a measure as to bring misery upon every facet of their being – despising who they think they are and believing that God does the same. Thus, they hide from Him yet believe it is He who is absent from them.

Because they abandon God’s truths regarding the magnificence in which they were wrought, they see life as a dangerous territory – to be at best warily navigated, or at worst, avoided. These poor souls have distinct characteristics. We’ve looked at the first two: suspended animation and panic; i.e. they are frozen in time (trapped in the past) and are deathly afraid of everything that goes on in and around them…

Characteristic #3: Wrath

One of the ways many people try to defend themselves against this dangerous world of their perception, is to strike out against others with their wrath (to do unto others before they do unto them). What do they hope to gain?

Cease from anger and forsake wrath; do not fret; it leads only to evildoing. Ps. 37:8 NASB

[Before we go there, we must consider that doing so is highly ineffective, because anger in itself (as well as its close cousins: envy and jealousy*) is really just another form of fear. It’s a form of oppression, where one tries to manacle another with their beliefs through intense emotion. This emotional offense is in reality a defense mechanism to intimidate someone into not trying to invalidate the angry one’s tightly held beliefs. And, if you stop to examine the beliefs they are angrily trying to protect, it’s always about some interpretation they made about something in their past.]

*(Envy comes from a fear of being ‘less than,’ believing others to be better than you. Jealousy involves the same, as well as including a fear of abandonment. Anger is the fear of life itself.)

Wrath is cruel, anger is overwhelming, but who can stand before jealousy? Pr. 27:4 ESV

For anger slays the foolish man, and jealousy kills the simple. Job. 5:2 NASB

For wherever there is jealousy (envy) and contention (rivalry and selfish ambition), there will also be confusion (unrest, disharmony, rebellion) and all sorts of evil and vile practices. James 3:16 AMP

The angry person is the one who is upset with the way that their life is turning out, (without taking any responsibility for it) projecting their wrath onto anyone whom they perceive is interfering with their survival mechanisms, e.g. someone who stops them from getting what they want (could be themselves), who keeps them from having an expectation fulfilled, or who disrupts their communication.

Anger is a form of ‘closing down’ by ‘striking out.’ It creates walls between the perpetrator and the object of their wrath. It is addictive – feeding upon itself and getting stronger with every outburst.

Anger has its roots in you not liking something (that’s only your preferences talking), wanting life to be different than it is (but allowing your ‘fear of change’ to paralyze you), seeing others as the ‘enemy’ (for not sharing your preferences), protecting against potential rejection (afraid the past will repeat itself), afraid of being ‘found out’ (avoiding the experience of shame or rejection for some misdeed you committed in the past), or you feel that others are trying to control you (especially if you see yourself as a victim of your past).

Wrath is a false relief valve. We explode to take the pressure off of ourselves and to shift our accountability for life onto something or someone else. However, with each use, anger magnifies until it becomes an uncontrollable torrent – so much so that we become afraid to express it (just like most of our emotions) yet it still comes, even if we don’t want it to.

He who is slow to anger has great understanding, but he who is quick-tempered exalts folly. Pr. 14:29 NASB

Our wrathful tirades drive everyone away (even those whom we want to hold close), leaving us with yet more shame and guilt. Worse, it does nothing to relieve our pain. You see, the danger that comes from indulging in anger is that it grows into violence that you direct both at yourself and others. At this point, how can you ever hope to touch happiness?

Ironically, this is one of the rare times the voice in your head will agree with you as it quips: ‘Didn’t I tell you that you were unhappy? See how horrible life is, how the world is, and what it’s done to you? How can you possibly get anywhere without me?’

What does anger do? It makes you think that you are powerful; but in reality it tears you down with high blood pressure so that you get to have a heart attack or stroke, not to mention ulcers, anxiety and cancer. Anger kills both the host and the target. Everyone around you runs away and you find yourself alone once more.

But that’s only if you continue to persist doing things your way. Far better to live reconnected to God and living your life His way – and that includes getting your coping / communicative skills on board with His:

A gentle answer turns away wrath, but a harsh word stirs up anger. Pr. 15:1 NASB

Let all bitterness and wrath and anger and clamor and slander be put away from you with all malice. Be kind to one another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another as God in Christ forgave you. Eph. 4:31, 32. ESV

…everyone must be quick to hear, slow to speak and slow to anger; for the anger of man does not achieve the righteousness of God. James 1:19 NASB

Good sense makes a man restrain his anger, and it is his glory to overlook a transgression or an offense. Pr. 19:11 AMP

…you are a God ready to forgive, gracious and merciful, slow to anger and abounding in steadfast love… Neh. 9:17 ESV

You see, God’s answers are always right, as well as the example of His own behavior.

Happiness eludes us because we become comfortable in our own misery. It’s what we know and we’re good at maintaining it. We know we won’t fail.

Moreover, we use unhappiness to justify our self-fulfilled prophecies about life’s disappointments, the perceived lack of fairness, our victim status, our distorted coping strategies, etc.

Without turning back to God, you will exit this life without ever having lived it. It doesn’t have to be this way.

Motivated to shed your old life yet? Just in case your not, (and I’m a bulldog for your salvation) there are still some facets of self-destruction yet to be uncovered…
Goodnight and God bless.

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September 05 2015 | experiencing god's love | No Comments »