color.

shut the front doorI’ve been given some serious what-for.

PinkGirl became aware that I said “dammit” in my blog the other day.

multiple times.

“MOM!”

hhhhhhhhhh.

I have a 12 year old censor. and she. is. bossy.

meanwhile, she thinks it is hilarious to tell me she “shipped her pants.

the fact is, I grew up with a mom who used “colorful” language.

nautical colors.

a LOT.

rationalizing Julie says, in comparison, “my colorful language is pastel.”

cuz that is so much better.

hhhhhhhhhhh.

I admit.

I sometimes cuss in my head.

sometimes. my head leaks out of my mouth.

not often.

and my colorful vocabulary is limited.

mostly to the “d” word and the “h” word.

those are in the Bible, right?

FirstHusband: “maybe so, but do you want your daughter to say them?”

hhhhhhhhhh. no.

every once in a while, the “sh” word comes out with a “no” in front of it.

I definitely don’t want my daughter to say that.

I think the “a” word and the “b” word are crass.

and I really HATE the “f” word.

In full disclosure – I am sure I’ve said them all.

having grown up with colorful language, I can tell you that it takes intentional effort to find alternative colors.

but back to the brain to mouth leakage.

if we are acquaintances, you will witness no leakage.

if we are friends…

it’s possible. you may witness leakage.

do I think such leakage is acceptable?

hhhhhhhhh.

no.

oh. look. another failure.

besides. if you know me, you know I hate pastel colors.

so I’m watching Tim Hawkins list 101 curse words Christians can say.

my favorites are:

crapola.
flippin.
shut the front door.
geez. louise.

and especially,

fer cryin out loud.

or external silence. with internal cussage.

and there it is.

ugly.

thankfully, forgiven.

I’m not going back to the colorful blog post and deleting the color. It would be a cover-up. a lie.

if you want perfect, you shouldn’t read this blog anymore.

there’s no perfect here.

[CLICK HERE to see a listing of all the blog posts in this series “the search for Joy.”]

reading. thinking. cleaning. painting. purging.

simplify clarify magnifyWhen my head is a mess, I am compelled to order my environment.

My husband is scared right now.

happy. but scared.

Happy because of all the stuff I’m getting rid of. And I’m getting rid of a LOT of stuff. a LOT of stuff.

Scared because of the honey-do list that goes along with ordering my environment.

poor guy.

I’m so thankful to God for him. He is my density.

In the middle (and at the bottom) of stirring this mess in my head, he said: “You really need to work through this. I don’t recognize you. It’s like you’ve given up. I don’t know whether to encourage you or give you a swift kick in the butt. You’ve lost your mojo.”

mojo. is that another word for faith?

It was bad. I couldn’t even pray.

What does faith look like when you can’t even pray?

it’s not pretty.

I needed to think. I need to think.

And so I clean my house. I paint my house. I purge my house. of books even. over 100 so far. I want every superfluous thing in my house gone. GONE.

GONE I tell you!

physically and metaphorically.

But in the middle of all the thinking I’m reading two books right now.

only two?

I know. But yes. These two are thick.

and heavy.

and not in a benchpress them kind of way.

Desiring God, Revised Edition: Meditations of a Christian Hedonist by John Piper

and

Decision Making and the Will of God: A Biblical Alternative to the Traditional View by Garry Friesen

FirstHusband suggested I re-read these books. Smart guy.

I’ve read both of them before. But I was younger then. Not that much younger. But still.

They were both responsible for pivot points in my faith.

In all my thinking and purging, I need to go back to bones of what I believe and why.

Messy deep digging blog posts ahead.

Even so, if you know me IRL (in real life), don’t weird out when you see me in person. If you’re at a loss about what to say, we can talk about the little blond girl’s face at the end of this commercial. cracks me up every time.

[CLICK HERE to see a listing of all the blog posts in this series “the search for Joy.”]

letting go.

God.

Four years ago, I was content to sing by myself. in the seclusion of my mini-van.

Leading worship never crossed my mind.

Four years ago, I was content to write a blog. about recipes and how to use a neti pot.

Writing a book never crossed my mind.

Four years ago, I was content to lead a monthly psuedo-Bible study. sitting in comfortable chairs in the living rooms of friends.

A speaking ministry never crossed my mind.

WHY?

Why did you allow me to go 4 years in this direction if it’s not the place you wanted me to be? How long do I have to stumble around in this mess I’ve made? How long till I figure out how to climb out of this pit? And how long after that will it take me to turn my face and feet towards next?

I have NO sense that these things I’ve been pursuing are from You.

I have NO confidence in my ability to figure out where to place my foot.

so I find myself unable to take a step.

I’m standing still.

paralyzed.

by the nagging thought that I have to let it go.

all of it.

And every time the thought crosses my mind, I cry.

SERIOUSLY.

cry?

dammit!

dammit. dammit. dammit.

I do NOT cry.

and it’s really starting to tick me off.

dammit!

Crying is a flippin WASTE of time. When I’m done, nothing has changed.

Except that I have a headache. and my mascara is shot.

And so I take the chicken walk.

If these desires are not from You – if they are, in fact, selfish – I’m asking you to TAKE them.

TAKEthemTAKEthemTAKEthem. I don’t want them.

LET. THEM. DIE.

DIE.

Painlessly would be my preference.

tested by fire 1 peter 1 6-7But part of me knows that if You really did allow these desires to grow over the last 4 years – only to get me to this place of recognition that I love them too much – you did it to teach me.

That I need to be satisfied in YOU, Jesus.

I need to find joy in YOU.

Leading worship isn’t enough.

Writing about You isn’t enough.

Telling people about You isn’t enough.

YOU are enough. You should be enough.

Part of me wonders.

knows.

That You’ve allowed me to go so far down this path because You needed me to be this wrecked about being so selfish.

Some say I’m under spiritual attack.

maybe.

if so, Satan’s doing a damn good job.

But I have to ask myself.

Am I being disciplined?

Am I being pruned?

Are these thoughts from You?

I can’t discount the possibility.

I can’t automatically assume that Satan is attacking me with doubt and discouragement.

Because You are sovereign, I believe nothing happens to me that You don’t allow.

double negative.

Is that what I’m being?

Right now, everything I see about this ministry I’ve been pursuing is about me. What I want. Me trying to manufacture something. If this is true, the hours I’ve wasted are incalculable. If this is true, I need to turn my back on this self-indulgent disobedience. And if this is true, it completely sucks. Because even after looking straight in the face of this possibility – even knowing I need You to be enough – without these dreams – I’m still mourning the death of them.

Lord, if I’m wrong, you’re going to have to show me.

Smack me upside the head.

because I don’t trust my judgement.

and I am SICK TO DEATH OF THE WHINING.

and seriously. I’m OVER the crying.

It is NOT working for me.

I don’t want to do it anymore.

“To say to Him that something else satisfies you more is the opposite of worship. It is sacrilege.”
Desiring God by John Piper

CLICK HERE to see a listing of all the blog posts in this series “the search for Joy.”

with white knuckled fists.

http://wallpaperscristaos.com.br/christianwallpapers/the-pieceClinging to some things.

with white knuckled fists.

things I love too much.

things I want…more than I want what God wants for me.

because the thought that the things I want and the things God wants for me aren’t the the same things?

Wrecks me.

I want to believe that the desires of my heart were placed there by God. That they are HIS desires.

I want to believe the passion I have for ministry was given to me by God.

that these desires and this passion aren’t born of my own selfish pursuit.

“want” is an understatement.

I have to let go of my dreams.

with absolutely no hope that God will ever give them back.

because giving them up while hoping I can have them back isn’t giving them up.

it’s negotiation.

manipulation.

deceiving.

myself.

not God.

He knows.

I need it to be okay with me if I never lead worship again.

I need it to be okay with me if the only time I sing is in my house and my van.

I need it to be okay with me if the draft of the book that’s currently saved on my computer lives there forever. in obscurity. unfinished.

I need it to be okay with me if my writing is limited to a blog nobody reads.

I need it to be okay with me if I never talk about how Christ has changed my life – while holding a microphone. ever again.

I need it to be okay with me if my witness is limited to the conversations I have with the individuals God places in my path each day. each hour.

and right now?

none of that is okay with me.

right now?

the fact that none of that is okay with me?

wrecks me.

me. me. me. me. me.

even I’m annoyed with the whining.

and I find myself unable to pray.

for myself.

I can thank Him. and I do.

I can worship Him. and I do.

There are moments when that’s all I can do.

I can pray intercessory prayers for other people. and I do.

over and over. every day.

But I can’t bring myself to ask Him for things I believe may be out of His will for me.

Right now, all I can see is how I’ve been trying to manipulate my circumstances.

Right now, all I can see are the ways I’ve been trying to create my own opportunities.

Instead of seeking God’s blessing, I need to seek His will.

I need to seek Him.

and He needs to be enough for me.

and right now?

He’s not.

and facing that truth…

wrecks me.

and after laying all this at His feet – after telling Him everything – the only petitionary prayer I can bring myself to pray is “Father, not my will, but Yours. no matter what.”

CLICK HERE to see a listing of all the blog posts in this series “the search for Joy.”

church: THERE. IS. MORE.

This is the 15th post of a series. I started out telling a chronological story, but got derailed before I could get past August of 2012. I’ve addressed the derailing tangent to death. I’m tired of talking about something I wasn’t even talking about. I’m skipping WAY ahead in my story. Maybe I’ll get back to explaining how God brought me to where I am today, maybe not. Today, I’m cutting to the chase. And I can see another tangent coming at me already, so I’m hoping an acknowledgement will help me nip that in the bud. (If you need to catch up or review, CLICK HERE to view a page listing all the posts in the series.)

I’m going to say hard things. I’ve spent a week writing this particular post and I’ve prayed about it for hours. and hours. and hours. and HOURS. Hard. Things. I promise you I’m saying them in a spirit of edification.


life abundant John 10 10After a 14 post lead-in…

HERE’S MY POINT:

THERE. IS. MORE.

“I came that they may have life and have it abundantly.”
John 10:10

Christ came that we may have life, and have it abundantly, in all its fullness.

Not abundant blessings or stuff.

Abundant LIFE.

Abundant life isn’t a state of existence to be pursued or attained. It isn’t a level of success or a degree of spirituality. It is an intimate relationship with Jesus Christ and it leads to a dependance on Him that can’t be met through or in or by ANYthing else.

Without Christ, I can accomplish NOTHING of eternal significance. Without Christ, I have NOTHING. Without Christ, I am NOTHING.

And before I say another word, I need to acknowledge something:

I know there are people in my church who understand what I’m saying.

I need to say that LOUDER:

I know there are people in my church who understand what I’m saying.

But there are so. many. people in my church who have no idea what I’m talking about.
There are people in my church who don’t want what I’m talking about.
There are people in my church who don’t give a flyin flip what I’m talking about.

And to beat a dead horse – I am not only referring to people who haven’t yet accepted Christ.
This is NOT about evangelism.
I am primarily referring to people who have accepted Christ.

I accepted Christ 28 years ago and up until 2007, I wouldn’t have known what I was talking about if I explained it to me. (good luck following that.)

There are born-again Christians in my church who have never experienced abundant life in Christ through an intimate, no holds barred relationship with him, who have no idea what I mean by that, who flat out don’t want it and/or don’t think there’s any need for it.

And if the Christians aren’t witnesses to what Christ has done and is doing in our lives and in our church, how will the non-Christians – both the people seeking God and the people who think they are Christian but have never accepted Christ – ever see evidence that a life transformed by faith in Christ is any different from their own?

There are so. many. people. – Christians and non-Christians – at my church who don’t see any need for an intimate relationship with Christ. They don’t even know that what they are missing even exists.

And that realization causes me to grieve for my church. and to pray. persistently.

Because as much as God desires an intimate relationship with us, He won’t force us into it.

The father let the prodigal son leave,
The king invited people to the wedding banquet for his son, but he didn’t force them to come,
He stands at the door and knocks
, but he doesn’t bust it down and come barreling in if we don’t open it.

My church is not a Christ-centered church. The gospel is not the foundation of all we say and do.

My church has gone off on our own to accomplish good and reasonable things in the world.
My church is so focused on working for God it doesn’t even occur to us to come to the banquet and spend time with God.
My church isn’t refusing to open the door, we just can’t hear Him knocking over all the activity in the house.

There’s nothing I can do or say to bring revival to my church. There’s nothing anyone can do or say to bring revival to my church. Not even the pastor. A Christ-centered sermon here or there won’t do it. A compelling sermon won’t “convince” us to desire revival. Because revival doesn’t come from an intellectual decision to initiate it.

Only the Holy Spirit can bring revival.

Yes, the Holy Spirit can anoint a pastor and use a 20 minute sermon to draw people to Christ. But if God were to move and stir revival in my church, He wouldn’t limit Himself to that 20 minutes. He would saturate the culture of the church in a foundational dependence on Christ that results in a consuming passion to worship Him, an underlying peace that comes from an unwavering trust in Him and JOY that trumps any unhappiness or trial we might face.

“We depend on God to help us.”

no. we don’t.

“Yes we do.”

no. we really don’t.

For all the things we do at my church, all the programs and classes and service and ministries and sermons and worship sets, we don’t – as a unified body of believers – acknowledge that without Christ at the center of all we say and do, we can’t accomplish ANYTHING of eternal significance.

dominoes in a nice neat rowAt my church, we link arms and stand strong together;
we would kick butt in a game of Red Rover.
At my church, we know how to follow instructions;
we would be champions at a Simon Says tournament.
At my church, we are more loyal to each other
than the Robertson Family.
At my church, if we had a box of dominoes, we would
line them up in nice, neat, reasonable, sensible rows
(I know a few who would prefer a game of Mexican train).

but.

We – as a unified body of believers – do NOT openly and consistently acknowledge that we are completely incapable of accomplishing anything on our own.

And there goes the first domino.

dominoes carefully laid plansThe second? Because we – as a unified body of believers – don’t acknowledge that the Holy Spirit – given to us freely through our faith in Christ – is the source of our strength and abilities, because we don’t approach EVERYthing we do – programs, classes, service, ministry and every aspect of our weekly services – with a openly shared understanding that we desperately need the Holy Spirit to equip us for these pursuits, we don’t make prayer our first step – our first priority – and humbly ask Him to do the equipping.

We don’t even ask Him if the things we are trying to do are within His will.

when the dominoes come tumbling down?

We set ’em up again.

We brainstorm and research and study and benchmark and make decisions based on good ideas and bad. We think and reason and rationalize and plan and execute – all without STOPPING. And spending “unreasonable” amounts of time in prayer asking God if these “things” we are planning are things He even wants us to do in the first place. As a unified body of believers, we don’t beg God to reveal to us our motivations and guide us to fruitfulness.

We are afraid to sincerely offer ourselves up and ask God to prune us. Why? Because we know He will?

Pruning HURTS.

But we need it. Because we are dragging the ground, covered in mud. Weak. Unfruitful.

We as a congregation need a clear understanding of what our church believes, what our values are, what our mission is, because without a clear understanding what we believe and why we believe it, we have nothing upon which to measure when it comes to evaluating whether or not all this stuff we’re doing supports those values.

And Christ should be at the center. Everything should branch off from that Vine.

Instead,

domino built on one1We do good and reasonable things.
We do things because we’ve always done them.
We do things because they are efficient.
We do things because they make sense.
We do things to make people comfortable.
We do things so people won’t leave.

We don’t even consider the possibility that God might have something completely different in mind.

Something radical.

Something better than we ever thought or imagined.

Something we can’t accomplish without Him.

Something that would give Him all the glory.

Instead, we are…reasonable. and appropriate.

We don’t ask people to tell us how they came to faith in Christ.
Instead, we ask them how they came to our church.

Baptisms are for new babies, new members and new confirmands.
Professions of faith? new members and confirmands.

If someone comes to faith in Christ outside the schedule of a new member or confirmation class, what do they do?
Who do they tell?
How do we celebrate?

Is genuine worship something we as a body of Christ are confident we experience every week?
Or are there (too many?) times when “congregational singing” would be a better description?

How many of us wake up and go to church because that’s just what we do on Sunday morning?
How many of us wake up and go to church because we look forward to spending time with friends and family?

How many of us wake up and look forward to church because we know we will encounter the manifest presence of God?

Every week.

This is what I pray for my church:

“But what about you?” he asked. “Who do you say I am?”

Simon Peter answered, “You are the Messiah, the Son of the living God.”

Jesus replied, “Blessed are you, Simon son of Jonah, for this was not revealed to you by flesh and blood, but by my Father in heaven. And I tell you that you are Peter, and on this rock I will build my church, and the gates of Hades will not overcome it.”
Matthew 16:15-18

“The gates of Hades will not overcome it.”

That’s not a church we can build on our own power. It’s a church only Christ can build.

But we have to realize we need the Father. And come home to Him empty handed.
We have to come to the banquet and spend time with Him.
We have to open the door and let Him in.

How do we get to that place? The place where we want to go home, want to spend time with him and want to open the door?

WE PRAY.

I’m praying desperately and persistently, that my church – as the body of CHRIST – would be profoundly dissatisfied with being nice people who do good things in pursuit of a “good Christian life.”

I’m praying desperately and persistently, that – as the body of CHRIST – we would dedicate ourselves to prayer and relentlessly ask Christ to draw us into an intimate relationship with Him that leads us to experience abundant life in Him.

because

THERE. IS. MORE.


“All the hearts who are content, And all who feel unworthy.
And all who hurt with nothing left, Will know that You are holy
And all will sing out, Hallelujah. And we will cry out, Hallelujah
Shout it, Go on scream it from the mountains
Go on and tell it to the masses, That He is God”


“We committed ourselves to unapologetic preaching, unashamed worship, unceasing prayer, and unafraid witness. And God began to reveal His glory slowly at first but increasingly over time.”
Vertical Church: What Every Heart Longs for. What Every Church Can Be by James MacDonald


CLICK HERE to read the next post in this series, entitled: Vertical Church: a clarification. and a survey.

This is the 15th post of a series. If you need to catch up or review, CLICK HERE to view a page listing all the posts in the series.

four minutes with God: Joshua 24:15

choose today whom you will serve Joshua 24 15a Quote:
“Your choice must be a deliberate determination—it is not something into which you will automatically drift. And everything else in your life will be held in temporary suspension until you make a decision. The proposal is between you and God—do not “confer with flesh and blood” about it (Galatians 1:16). With every new proposal, the people around us seem to become more and more isolated, and that is where the tension develops. God allows the opinion of His other saints to matter to you, and yet you become less and less certain that others really understand the step you are taking. You have no business trying to find out where God is leading—the only thing God will explain to you is Himself.     

Openly declare to Him, “I will be faithful.” But remember that as soon as you choose to be faithful to Jesus Christ, “You are witnesses against yourselves . . .” (Joshua 24:22). Don’t consult with other Christians, but simply and freely declare before Him, “I will serve You. ”Will to be faithful—and give other people credit for being faithful too.”
My Utmost for His Highest, Updated Edition by Oswald Chambers

my Prayer:
Lord, I will be faithful. I will serve You. Please equip me to be a witness for your grace and glory. Please bless me with wisdom. Please bless me with courage. “In the same way, the Spirit helps us in our weakness. We do not know what we ought to pray for, but the Spirit himself intercedes for us through wordless groans.” Romans 8:26

the Word:
…choose for yourselves today whom you will serve…
Joshua 24:15 (NASB)

the lyric.
“Let not conscience make you linger, Not of fitness fondly dream;
All the fitness He requireth is to feel your need of Him.

Come, ye weary, heavy laden, lost and ruined by the fall;
If you tarry til you’re better, You will never come at all.
You will never come at all.”

Volcanoooooo (a sixth grade science project)

Here’s how PinkGirl’s volcano science project turned out yesterday:

If you’ve been around for a while, you might remember FavoriteSon’s volcano project. Here’s an excerpt from that blog post:

We end up at Michael’s craft store with four packages of quick drying clay, a terra cotta pot and . . . a rocket engine. Yes. Michael’s sells rocket engines. FirstHusband is smiling and FavoriteSon is explaining how there really IS a type of volcano that explodes like that . . . The boys spend all morning Saturday wiring and soldering. Then they go into the backyard to test it before they make a terra cotta pot LOOK like a volcano. It works. It explodes. I look at FavoriteSon and say, “When you get sent to the office on Monday, give them your dad’s work number so he can explain how that’s perfectly safe.” . . . Then it’s tested again, this time adding sand to the top of the volcano so it shoots dirt up into the air and looks even more realistic . . . either FavoriteSon will be suspended or he will get an “A” on this project. (postscript: he got an “A”)

So. This time, explosives are NOT an option. PinkGirl has the same science teacher FavoriteSon did. No playing the “I had no idea” card. But PinkGirl wanted “a BIG explosion.” How to do that without ignition? FirstHusband wanted to buy a portable compressor, but his attempt to justify the expense by coming up with other things to do with it after making a volcano explode?

FAIL.

So my father (SuperPappy) suggested the shop vac reversed. The lampshade idea came to me during a severe allergic reaction to crafting after my husband said the words “paper mache” to me. We picked out a dirty, torn lampshade and got a 25% discount. Final Sale. No returns.

No problem. Crafting avoided.

As you can see, the explosion was a HIT. The ash went higher than the fence.

Here’s the written report PinkGirl wrote to accompany the volcano shown in the video:

“Volcanoes are amazing things of nature and only God can create them. Still for my project I tried my best and I also had fun while doing it. From deciding what type of volcano mine is or what type of eruption it will have it was a fun learning experience that I would love to tell you about.

The First thing I did was paint the lampshade (which is my volcano). It was actually a lot harder than I thought it was going to be because I had to mix paint to find the right color. The second thing I did was cut a hole in the box big enough for the pipe. Then I cut the top of the lampshade out with bolt cutter. (It was awesome!) After that I measured and cut the pipe to the right size with a hack saw. (My dad helped a little for this part but I did cut with a hack saw.) Next I glued the pipe to the adapter and cut the small pipe to the right size and glued it to the adapter and the elbow of the other pipe. Then I put another hole in the side of the box and put the side pipe in it. Next is my favorite part. I put coal in a bag and crushed it with a hammer. After that I poured the ash and coal in and covered it with saran wrap. Then I painted the box green and put the “Snow” on the volcano. The last step was decorating it with little touches to make it look better.

During the process of building my volcano I learned all about Composite volcanoes and plinian eruptions. Composite volcanoes are made out of ash, tephra, and lava. Plinian eruptions are violent and have lots of ash and poisonous gasses. Mt. Saint Helens was a composite volcano and had a plinian eruption.

I always thought a volcano just meant lava and smoke but I now understand that volcanoes are much more complicated than that. God must have had fun designing and creating volcanoes. He is a very creative God who has an amazing imagination. Volcanoes are dangerous magnificent things that create new land, give us dazzling treasures, and really open our eyes to show us how marvelous our world really is. I can only imagine what other planets are like.

a good Christian life.

Honored to have had the privilege of delivering this message to a group of women at a Brunch this past Saturday morning. This video will give you a preview of the book I’m writing. If you’ve got 8 minutes and 27 seconds, check it out.

not more from God, more of God.

pray continually[the following is an excerpt from the book I’m writing]

Intimate communication with Christ through prayer can be the foundation of everything in your life: every thought you think, every idea that opens your mind, every choice you make. But when we relegate prayer to certain times and places in our lives, we limit that communication – and its influence on our thoughts, ideas and choices. We quench the Holy Spirit.

1 Thessalonians 5:17-18 tells us to “pray continually” and that it is “God’s will for you in Christ Jesus.” These instructions aren’t directed at monks, they are for everyone who has accepted Christ. It’s possible to pray anywhere, anytime because God is with you, everywhere, all the time. It’s possible for prayer to saturate your moments and your days.

Did I just morph into that Jesus Freak with whom you avoid eye contact and cross the street to escape? Have you already tuned me out, thinking, “meh, she’s not talking to me. I don’t need to change anything. I’m fine.”

fine.

The most heinous of four letter words. Saturated in mediocrity. Reeking of average. Riding the edge of dissatisfaction and discouragement. More comfortable than a recliner and a bowl of chips in front of a 60 inch flat screen. There are some people who live their entire lives feeling fine about everything they do. There are people live their entire lives feeling fine about their relationship with God.

Fine is not what I’m going for. I. want. more.

I’ve discovered that I can have as much of God as I want, and I want more. I want Christ in every nook and cranny of my mind and heart and soul, every day of the week because when He’s not? My pursuits are just pointless exercises in ladder climbing and stuff collecting. I want my relationship with Christ to be at the center of my marriage, my relationship with my kids, family and friends, my career, my ministry.

If that makes me a Jesus Freak, go ahead and call me one, under your breath or to my face, I’m okay with the label. I’ve found the ultimate source of passion in life and I can’t keep it to myself. I’m compelled to share it. It fuels me. My relationship with Christ makes the routine meaningful, the lows bearable and the highs incomparable. God’s grace is more amazing than any song could describe, His love is illogically unconditional, His patience is unimaginably endless, His blessings are undeserved and abundant and His peace obliterates worry and fear. This is the “more” I’m talking about and there’s plenty of it to go around.

It all stems from prayer, intimate no-holds barred prayer. Naked prayer. The kind of prayer you pray when you are unashamed and want to tell God everything. The kind of intimate communion Adam and Eve experienced with God in the Garden before they were deceived. I’m writing this book because I want you to want more. To have more. More of God.

Not more from God, more of God.

four minutes with God: Luke 1:37

Luke 1 37the Word:
“God can do anything.”
Luke 1:37 (NIV)

my Prayer:
Lord, I pray for revival, filled with doubt that You will stir it. Not because You can’t, but because You won’t. I believe You can do anything. But I also know You don’t force yourself on anyone. And the people I’m praying for are very comfortable right where they are. They see no need to change. They see nothing wrong except for this Jesus Freak who’s rocking the boat.

So I ask you Lord, not for anything specific, because I have no flippin idea what to ask for. You know. You know exactly what is needed and exactly when. Your plan is perfect. Your timing is perfect. I know You don’t need me, but pray that You can and will use me. I’m asking You – I’m begging You – to move. Move in the hearts and minds of individuals. I pray that they will be DISsatisfied with an assumption of Christ. I pray that they will, from their soul, cry out for Jesus. I pray they won’t be able to stomach any substitute.

Almighty God, I’m begging you for a miracle, no matter what it looks like. No matter how much it hurts. Because You are my comfort, my peace, my strength and my hope. I trust You, even when I don’t understand what You are doing.

a Quote:
“He [God] specializes in solutions that have no explanation other than Him.

Don’t get discouraged by the long, unyielding situations in your life. God has solutions for them. He may not have revealed those solutions yet – He let many people in Scripture endure long periods that required faith and patience – but He is never late with His answers. Wait, believe and hope. Nothing is impossible with Him.”
The One Year Experiencing God’s Presence Devotional: 365 Daily Encounters to Bring You Closer to Him
by Chris Tiegreen

the lyric.
“I may be weak, But Your Spirit’s strong in me. My flesh may fail, but My God You never will!”
Give Me Faith, by Elevation Worship (click HERE to listen)