Purpose: Spiritual callings, roles, and giftings (I’m not you…)

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The Holy Spirit is, in my own words, “Jesus’ stunt-double”, meaning He is here with us while our Jesus is seated at the right hand of our Father. Make no mistake here, Jesus is Omnipresent, to be sure, but The Spirit is the manifest presence of The Godhead, flowing in us, through us, around us, and as an ever-present counselor to guide us in His ways. He’s amazing like that.

No other god can say that about itself. No other false spirit can do these things. Only Him. Only The Holy Spirit. Period.

Now then, knowing that The Spirit is real, we also know He came to us, sent from our Father after Jesus The Son fulfilled The New Covenant, bearing His gifts, His power, and His purposes. The Spirit has one “role”, if you will, and that is to bring us to the fullness of Christ Jesus both intellectually and spiritually. Remember, we are told we can love God with our minds, so rest assured The Spirit will boost our own intellects as only He can to enable them to wrap themselves around the deeper things of our Father. He also boosts our spirits, breaking them through Salvation, and then gently remaking them according to His perfect design. Fullness, yes? Yes.

It is said that there is One Body, but many parts (The Big Picture). This preaches well from behind a pulpit, and allows for us to segregate ourselves unknowingly into camps of “the haves” and “the have-nots”. Yikes. This should not be so!

However, instead of adopting this attitude, what if we considered this “One Body, many parts” truth in the light of, “Look, this is my calling, and that is your calling. I do not want to be you, and I do not want to tell you how you should walk in the gifts our Father has given you according to my ideals, so do not be critical of me and think you know how Jesus and I should relate to one another, thank you so much!”, when it comes to The Big Picture.

The Holy Spirit, in His wisdom and in no small part in His own sense of humor, has given each and every one of us the gift of a personal and ongoing relationship with Him that only He controls and fully grasps. He has given each and every one of us a purpose, a calling, a gifting (or giftings), and then propelled us forward in His Name to do as He says. So simple.

People will wish to dissect gifts from callings from ministries from purposes from etc., etc. I, however, merely look at this all through the eyes of a son and not as a theologian who needs to put His works, and how He relates to us individually, into boxes with labels that I can easily understand. There are some things that, no matter what, will be beyond our scope of understanding this side of Heaven. *shrugs* It is what it is.

The Holy Spirit does as The Father commands. He comes to us through Salvation, at The Father’s bidding, and performs miracles within us that open the door to a greater purpose and a greater ministry in His Name. And these ministries are for us as He sees fit. He gives them. He decides who does what, who gets what, and that’s simply how it is.

Not a one of us has been saved merely for the sake of Salvation. It is not as if any of us can ever shrug our shoulders and say, “Well, I’m saved. I got mine. You’re on your own, I reckon. Good luck with that whole ‘Jesus thing’. I’m all set. I’m good here.” No. We have been saved for a reason. We have been saved to do something this side of Heaven that our Father is specifically wanting us to do. We have a purpose.

Now, this is not to say our Father has pinned His hopes on us or on our obedience to Him. Not at all! His Will shall be done, no matter what. But how thrilling it is, how wonderful it is, how loving it is for Him to draw us into His Plan for the world and for His Bride.

The gist is this: I am me. You are you. He is our Father and God and Lord and Master. He talks to you differently than He talks to me. He relates to me differently than He relates to you. He has called you to do what He wants, and He has called me to do what He wants, but  these things are not necessarily the same thing.

So let us all NOT put one another under the microscope of scrutiny that is our own making. Be you. Be the you that He wants you to be. Be the you that only He knows. Disregard the critiques of mere men, no matter how well-intentioned they might be, unless The Spirit specifically commands you to LISTEN to them. There is an unhealthy amount of white noise in The Kingdom, made from the protests and whining of Christians who have no sense of purpose, who are simply blowing in the wind.

You have a purpose. Find it. Seek it. Ask our Father to show it to you. You were saved for a reason, and empowered to do it!

Simple.

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Happy Thanksgiving 2013!

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I adore Thanksgiving. I do. It makes perfect sense to me that our hearts would be postured in thankfulness right before we celebrate the birth of Christ Jesus, the greatest gift of all. This thankfulness prepares our hearts and spirits for fully receiving the total power and strength and love that we esteem during the Christmas Season, that being the Birth of Our Lord, King, Master, and Savior.

*sigh* He really is amazing.

Now then, I won’t waste your time and mention the obvious things we should be thankful for, (since normally these are things we have already and things we all agree upon as being good), but will instead focus on what we should be thankful for that we don’t have.

  • We don’t have confusion.
  • We don’t have failure.
  • We don’t have doubt.
  • We don’t have the wages of sin.
  • We don’t have the exhausting task of constantly living a life being held to a standard none of us can achieve.
  • We don’t have a false god who could care less about us.
  • We don’t have indecision, wonder, hesitance, or double-mindedness.
  • We don’t have a false god that hates us, while lying to us that he loves us, and who forces our obedience through works, deeds, rituals, and expected actions of self-deprecation.
  • We don’t have a false god who only listens when it pleases him and serves his purposes.
  • We don’t have religion, patternistic belief, or forced fealty to a god we are scared of, hoping, praying he won’t just decide one day to kill us off.
  • We don’t have worry.
  • We don’t have anxiety.
  • We don’t have outright and unrestrained hopelessness.
  • We don’t know what it is to be lost, alone, rejected, dismissed, isolated, and abandoned.

I could go on and on, of course. But consider this a small taste of the things we should be thankful that we do not have as sons of God.

Not a sermon; just a thought.

Happy Thanksgiving, all!

Kingdom Mentality: To Vote or Not To Vote?

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Today happens to be the first Tuesday in November during an election year here in Bethel. The open grass on the sides of our streets are littered with the signs of the candidates, each vying for our attention and support. Front yards of private citizens are used as sounding boards for candidates of all stripes.

There is an air of excitement and new possibilities, and sites such as Patch are full of opinions and commentaries regarding the course of action our little town should take. I am watching it all with a mixture of mild amusement and legitimate concern, because while I myself bow to a theocracy through King Jesus, I am also very much aware that life this side of Heaven has secular demands that need attending to. Taxes, mil rates, road work, commerce, etc., all are a part of said secular living.

I learned early on in my covenantal walk with Christ that it profits me nothing to be “so Heavenly-minded that I am no earthly good”. Saying this, I walk in two worlds: the spiritual and the secular. When elections roll around, be they local, State, or National, I do my best to pay attention and to foment a proper voting response, knowing that in The Big Picture it is irrelevant, but also knowing I am existing in this small portion of said Big Picture. Like I said, it is a mixture.

Of Jesus it is said that the government rests upon His shoulders. Kingdom life is governmental in nature, and The Kingdom is likewise. We have a King, a ruler, a Savior who has a station and a position that shapes our very existence as sons of God, and in whom no wickedness is to be found and whose will is flawless and perfect. The same cannot be said for man’s politics.

So when it comes time to cast a vote, knowing the course of history as it pertains to our small town will be directly affected, how do we know we are voting the correct way? Well, we don’t. All we can do is consider the secular aspects of this election season, balancing them against the here and now, and trusting in our God and Father to see us through to the other side of the decisions we make.

Should Christians vote? Should Christians not vote? Should Christians rest in the Sovereignty of God and let what will happen simply happen and know it is the will of our Father and not vote, or should we be pro-active and believe we can be incorporated in determining said destiny and vote?

Yes and Yes.

I vote because I can. However, I also fully rely upon the wisdom and Sovereignty of God that tells me no matter what the final tally is, He will be there to carry me through. No matter who wins these elections, all of the different ones involved, I know that God our Father is well aware and will not leave us or abandon us.

Simple.

So vote your conscience, vote your heart, vote your spirit. For us as sons of God, it is always a win-win situation, since God our Father holds it all in His hand.

Tomorrow morning, after the dust is settled and elected officials have been determined, God is still going to be our Father, Jesus is still going to be our King, and The Spirit will still welcome us as we awaken to a new day that He has brought.

Cross-posted at Bethel Patch.