Month: August 2014

What did they Say?

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We listen to words way to much and ignore the spirit by which they are said.

For example if someone was to say…

“The color is red”

What is being communicated has more to do with what their spirit is saying than it does the actual words.

If it is yelled it means one thing

If its just a kind response it’s another.

If it is said in tears it means something quite different.

To learn to listen to more than just the words that are spoken is to touch the spirit of the person who is doing the talking.

In life there are a lot of people who have the right answers. They use words to say the right things, in fact they can say them the right way with the right emotions but the thing they cannot do is hide their spirit from you when they speak.

When someone speaks their spirit is always revealed.

Now you can personally be blinded to their spirit, you can focus on their words to the point you lose the ability to ascertain what their spirit is saying, or you can just not look for that because you feel it’s too subjective but regardless if someone opens their mouth…

their spirit is always revealed.

Jesus says it this way…

“You brood of vipers! How can you speak good, when you are evil?  For out of the abundance of the heart the mouth speaks.” Matthew 12:34

Yes they knew what to say, they knew how to say it but their evil spirit still was evident even in the goodness of what they spoke. Because good words, the right answers, the right things can be spoken the right way with an evil spirit.

It takes looking beyond the words to the spirit driving the words to figure out what type of spirit is behind them.

Sometimes something is said that sounds mean but the spirit behind it isn’t. To look for what their spirit is saying would avoid a needless argument.

Sometimes something is said that sounds good but the spirit behind it isn’t. To look for what their spirit is communicating would avoid a potential mistake being made.

I know I do not want to have needless arguments and I know I want to avoid potential mistakes and I have a feeling you do to…

For we know man, not only by the words of his mouth, but also by the tone of his spirit.

So next time you listen to someone speak don’t allow yourself to get distracted by what they are saying.  Listen for the spirit behind what they are saying, only then will you truly know what is being communicated.

What to write?

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Today was one of these days you had a lot of “post starters” but couldn’t seem to get any traction on any of them.

The day started with an idea about Bible Study and Spiritual growth and how there are some people who think they are growing spiritually because they read the Bible through a particular theological view point and cast out everyone that doesn’t agree with them.  It seems the ability to see what is wrong in the theological vantage points of others is seen a sign of spiritual maturity when in reality it’s a sign of immaturity.  The fact is spiritual growth happens when we are forced to make life changes as the result of the truth we have learned from our study.  But I would say a lot of people that study the Bible do not do it to change, they do it to strengthen their arguments rather than their spiritual life. They are not looking for anything new or adjustments for things they currently believe.  They only want to strengthen what they know or confirm it.

So that one just kind of ended there.

The next was to talk about my son and his open house today at middle school.  And stuff like “I can’t believe he’s going into middle school where has the time gone” but… yea… just didn’t feel like writing about that today.

Another post was the result of a conversation I had with a good pastor friend of mine. The title was going to be “Why is it always the Pastor that is wrong?”  But I didn’t want to explore that one for fear I would give away details of his situation and then someone read my blog and it make things worse for him.  So that ended quickly.

We watched Thor for the first time last night.  I thought about writing about “why do story lines naturally flow to a death and a resurrection for the hero in a lot of movies?”   You know Optimus Prime, Harry Potter, and in Thor… Thor, just to name a few. Is there something Philosophical going on with this? Or Redemptive?

The last one I was going to repost the “Alone” blog I spoke of Sunday in my sermon.  But I’ll just include the link to that one here.  https://phillipbrande.wordpress.com/2013/10/17/alone   Seems this post wasn’t 2 years ago (as I said on sunday) but it is true it has the largest amount of hits out of anything I’ve ever written. Like an amazing amount of hits for my little site.

So… what to write?Well, let’s just mention them all and move on to tomorrow.

Sounds good to me.

 

Not Enough

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With the recent death of Robin Williams it seems that the media is consumed with the idea that popularity, riches and financial success in this world is not enough to make one stable and satisfied…

and they are right.

But then I ask…

“what do they count on to make them happy?” (the news people) for we all count on something. We are born that way. Yes, from conception we began a search for significance, a search for happiness, a search for satisfaction because we are all born in this world missing something and we know it. Our first cry demonstrates it, our determination to move, our first step of mobility is only a drive to achieve something more, to gain something, to find what is missing.

Some continue the search their entire lives through various means and ways, others give up on the search and retreat to a mode of existence that looks like they are satisfied with the hand life dealt them but in reality they are trying to ignore the nagging deep inside of them that says there is more. Others find the thing that is missing and never have the feeling again. The interesting thing about these people is they all seem to find the same thing that settles the matter once and for all.

They find Jesus

But it’s not like they just found Him. It’s more than that. These people come to a place where they make a decision to begin a relationship with Him and it’s the new life that comes from that relationship that makes the difference, that satisfies.

In this life we should always strive to achieve and do our best at whatever we put our minds to do.  However, if we proceed without a relationship with Jesus whatever we accomplish will never be enough. Furthermore, if we decide to start a relationship with Jesus but don’t cultivate it and make Him part of all that we do, what we accomplish will also never be enough. But, if we live for Him, follow Him and His purpose for our lives, the success that comes from doing that will be more than enough. It will provide a satisfaction that can’t be match with awards, recognitions or things.

So this post is not about Robin Williams and his death, it’s about this fixation by the media on the idea that things and success in life is not enough…

a fixation we all have struggled with

a fixation only a heathy relationship with Christ solves.

My prayer is for those that are currently talking about this topic, that they will find the answer to their conundrum…

…Jesus

Being a Pastor

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I don’t think

In fact I know

I never expected to have to know about so many things when I became a pastor.  How relationships work, both marriage, family and friendships. How to lead different types of people and what exactly is the makeup of a person so you can effectively lead them and place them in a ministry they were designed for. I have learned medical terms and have come to experience an array of medical problems and situations not only with the ones that are experiencing them but also the family that is concerned about their loved one and the emotions that go with all of that. How to minister to kids, teens and adults, marrying people and giving advice on money, sex, and how to handle conflicts.  As a pastor you have to be seemingly ready at a moments notice to answer any question, including defenses of the faith, things the Bible says and doesn’t say and why certain things are wrong and others aren’t. How to effectively manage a church body and some knowledge about how to run a business and manage money… and I could go on for I haven’t even included all the tax and legal stuff including insurance I have had to be aware of… and there are even more things beyond that… like sermon prep…

Whew!

Yes, being a pastor is not just proclaiming the gospel each week. The elephant is bigger and might even be a mammoth. It’s no wonder more of us haven’t snapped at some one outside of our family.  It’s no wonder more of us aren’t walking agents of destruction, I’m amazed at how calm I am (most of the time). But that is just a testimony to the power of God.

Being a pastor is not really about making sure you know all these things (and more that aren’t listed above). Being a pastor is about walking under the strength and power of Jesus and relying on Him every step of the way…

for it’s not my strength that wins the day…

It’s His.

If it was mine I would be dead by now….