Archive for December, 2009

A close friend and christian brother of ours was walking in a local store the other day when he was suddenly overcome with a deep sadness.  The sadness was so strong that it caused him to be visibly shaken, prompting his wife to ask him what was wrong.  He told her that he didn’t know but he felt as if a darkness had come over him, causing him to be deeply saddened.  Perplexed, he looked around to find any clue he could as to why he felt such sadness but to no avail.  Eventually, the deep sadness passed but he was still left with a feeling that continued to knaw at his spirit.

The next day while at work, he was given the news that a co-worker of his, on the day before, had gone to visit his daughter for the holidays, and after arriving, found her at her home shot to death by her husband.  How devastating it must be for a father to find his daughter shot to death, just a year after he had already lost his wife.  It’s something you wouldn’t wish on even your worst enemy.

Our friend came to find out that the deep sadness that had overcome him came after his co-worker had discovered his daughter’s body.  Even though he couldn’t comprehend why this deep sadness had overcome him, the Spirit opened my friend’s supernatural eyes, grieving him so that he could see into the supernatural realm and intercede, in some unknown way, for his friend.   

Although our friend would not have chosen to feel such deep sadness, and didn’t understand it,  it was a privilege, a gift that God had given to him.  God doesn’t allow just anyone such intimate access to someone else’s pain but it is vital that he see this world through supernatural eyes….God’s eyes, if he is to reach lost souls for Christ and set the spiritual captives free.   It’s vital for anyone chasing God and wanting to make a real difference in someone’s life.

The Spirit is equipping him and his wife for an awesome ride into the heavenlies where they are going to stomp on satan, reach lost and hurting people who will be set free of their spiritual bondages, and become children of the Risen Lord.  It was a testing,  a character builder and a faith builder.  God was telling him that he is ready to take the next step in understanding the role he will play in God’s army. 

I’m stoked that he had that privilege, that experience.  It says a lot about where my brother is in his walk with God.  He was a good, “average” christian when we first met two years ago but since then he’s gone to the Heart of Darkness in Brazil on two mission trips,  the good, “average” Christian is no longer….he’s becoming dangerous now.  He has walked through the open veil into the supernatural realm where the authority, power and love of Christ resides.   It’s not a place for the weak and timid.  Most christians will never even sneek a peak beyond the veil, much less walk through it.  He has!  And knows now that walking in the full authority and power of Christ is uncomprehendably awesome, inspiring and fulfilling.  But it’s also hard.  It’s tough, it hurts and it requires us to lay down ourselves in order to be used by Christ. 

Many people think they want to see this world and it’s people  how God sees them, and they talk it up while puffing their chests out to all that pass by but in reality they don’t have a clue as to what they’re asking.  Seeing people like God, like Christ sees them doesn’t involve the sensation of sight.  That’s easy…that’s how anyone in the world with sight can see someone.  No….seeing them through the eye’s of God requires feeling their pain, tasting their pain, living their pain and touching their pain….with their spirits.   It moves us past the superficial acts of throwing a few coins in the hands of  a homeless person as we step over him lying on the street, or telling someone we’re there for her when we know we’ll never answer that phone when she  calls, or shedding a tear for the child starving to death in Brazil while the pastor or missionary is standing before you but throwing the sponsorship application in the trash as we live the church building.   No…most will never be used like that by God. 

I know he may wish he didn’t feel that deep pain, that deep sadness but it was a good thing.   It was a good thing my friend.

Yea, this world is hurting too deeply not to give them the One true God, the One true Savior, the One true Hope, the One true Faith and the One true Love that will ever set the spiritual captives free, bring Joy to the depressed, deliver the oppressed and heal the sick, addicted and mentally ill.  

Yea, this world is hurting too deeply to not give people the full glory and the full power of Jesus Christ.

Did I ask too much?

More than a lot,

you gave me nothing, now that’s all I got,

we’re one but we’re not the same,

well we hurt each other and then you do it again. 

You say love is a  temple, love the higher law, love is a temple, love the higher law,

you ask me to enter, then you make me crawl….

and I can’t be holding on to what you’ve got

when all you’ve got is hurt

one love… one blood… one life you got to do what you should

one life with each other…sisters, brothers…

One life but we’re not the same, we get to carry each

Carry each other

One…..One….One….One…One

“(1) One day Peter and John were going up to the temple at the time of prayer – at three in the afternoon. (2) Now a man crippled from birth was being carried to the temple gate called Beautiful (my emphasis) , where he was put every day to beg from those going into the temple courts.  (3)  When he saw Peter and John about to enter, he asked them for money.  (4)  Peter looked straight at him, as did John.  Then Peter said, “Look at us!”  (5)  So the man gave them his attention, expecting to get something from them.  (6)  Then Peter said, “Silver or gold I do not have but what I have I give you.  In the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth, walk (my emphasis).  (7)  Taking him by the right hand, he helped him up, and instantly the man’s feet and ankles became strong  (8)  He jumped to his feet and began to walk (my emphasis).”  Acts 3:  1-8 (NIV)

The temple gate called Beautiful was prime real estate for cripples and beggars.  Not only did a lot of people pass through daily but a lot of  religious people with a little extra coinage that wanted to look good in the eyes of God.  Day after day after day, the cripple went to the gate to beg for a few coins that would ensure his survival for another day.   So when Peter and John passed by and told the cripple to “Look at us!”, he looked at them with anticipation and expectation of receiving a silver or gold coin to add to the day’s tally.  But Peter didn’t offer the cripple anything of this world….he offered him a supernatural encounter with Jesus and it radically changed his life.  He went to the gate called Beautiful as a broken cripple and walked away a restored man.  It wasn’t Peter that healed the cripple but the Spirit of Christ.  All Peter did was what Jesus told him he would do, in His name – greater things than I have done.

Today, the hurting, the broken, the depressed, the oppressed and the lost come to our churches called “Beautiful”, expecting to meet the Jesus that can heal and deliver them, transforming their lives and making them whole again but get everything except the real power of Jesus.  They get denominational interpretations in the form of false doctrines (think Cessation), they get carefully orchestrated worship and preaching services meant to ensure the Holy Spirit doesn’t show up and ruin their Sunday morning tea party, they get beautiful, comfortable sanctuaries that bring out the well-mannered country club crowd on Sundays…..but not the real Jesus.  At least not the Jesus that Peter called on that day to heal a broken cripple.

Sad isn’t it – the cripple expected coins and received healing in the powerful name of  Jesus Christ.   The sick and hurting of today come expecting and hoping to be healed and get parting gifts and watered down versions of Jesus….but not healed, not delivered of their pain and spiritual strongholds because we choose to ignore the Words of Jesus and refuse to walk in the supernatural power of Christ. 

The disciple (Peter vs. Patrick) may be different but the name isn’t.  Jesus is the same today as that day the cripple was healed, and the command to heal and deliver the lost and hurting in His name is still the order for his followers. 

So in the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth……