My predictions for the coming year:[Continue Reading…]
If you are producing fruit for God’s kingdom, people will judge your intentions. And some of them — tragically — will even be Christians. Two points about this problem.
First: Beware imputing bad motives to the hearts of others, for whenever you do, you simply reveal what’s in your own heart. The piece of saw dust that you perceive in your sister/brother’s eye came from the telephone pole that sits in your own (Matthew 7:1-4).
A person who has pride in their hearts will assign pride to the motives and actions of others. “To the pure, all things are pure; but to those who are defiled and unbelieving, nothing is pure…” (Titus 1:15).
By contrast, “love thinks no evil” of others (1 Corinthians 13). Those who walk in the Spirit think the best of their siblings in Christ and never presume to judge their intentions.[Continue Reading…]
As I look at the spiritual landscape of our world today, I’m reminded of a message that I have only delivered twice in my life. The message is called “The Tabernacle of David.” If you’ve never heard it, you can listen to the recording of the first time I ever delivered it. I believe it’s a message for our times, even more so now than when I first spoke it. Go here to give it a listen.
The Lord will not always rescue you when you want Him to. And He certainly will not act according to your timetable every time.
In fact, sometimes He will let you die (metaphorically speaking). He may even wait until you’re quadruply dead and stinking in your tomb before He does anything (think Lazarus).
So when things become black in your life, and there seems to be no way out, your situation has the fingerprints of Jesus Christ all over it.
Chisel it in stone: you can’t have a resurrection without a death. Resurrection is God’s act alone. And that’s why it always brings glory to Him.
Two things to remember during your trial: 1) the Lord is seeking to show you something new about Himself and 2) the lesson you learn is not just for yourself. It’s given to you to help others.
So lean hard on your Lord. Trust Him, yielding, waiting, and seeking, expecting your resurrection. And in time, it will surely come.[Continue Reading…]
The high-voltage political season in the US has got me thinking about smearfests. Jesus of Nazareth was no politician. Yet He was subject to a continuous stream of smears. Here are 11 accusations that were laid at our Lord’s feet during His day:
He was an illegitimate child, a drunkard, a glutton, a false prophet, a deceiver, a blasphemer, mentally ill, demon possessed, a law-breaker [“unbiblical”], Beelzebub [Satan incarnate], and a temple-destroyer.
Strikingly, the Lord never defended Himself against any of these allegations. That’s just how divine life rolls.[Continue Reading…]
In every presidential election, those who cheer for a particular candidate feel like it’s closed curtains on the free world when their candidate loses. Those on the winning side feel the opposite.
Laying that aside, throughout this year’s US election, countless Christians engaged in the same level of anger, vitriolic rhetoric, and political smackdowns in which the unbelieving world engaged. There was little difference save for the words “Jesus” or “God” peppered in.
As I reflect on the kingdom of God, I believe many of us have forgotten who we are and what our citizenship entails. The kingdom to which we belong isn’t reduced to going to heaven when we die. Nor is it trying to make the world a better place by grabbing political power.
The kingdom of God is here right now (though not in fullness). It broke into this realm 2,000 years ago when Jesus of Nazareth — this world’s true Lord — began a divine insurgence. It’s a kingdom that’s not of this world, yet it’s for this world.[Continue Reading…]
DeVern Fromke is the author of Ultimate Intention – a book that revolutionized my understanding of God’s mission when I was in my 20s. Fromke ministered with T. Austin-Sparks, the man who has had the greatest impact on my work. Fromke also ministered with Stephen Kaung, another mentor of mine (and a co-worker to Watchman Nee).
I met Fromke when I was 28. Since then, I’ve made it a priority to keep in regular contact with him via phone, email, and through in-person meetings. I sought him out and made hearing him speak a priority.
One of the saddest things in life is to have the opportunity to be in the presence of greatness, and let it pass by. DeVern Fromke was a great man. And I thank God for seizing every opportunity to sit at his feet and learn from him, even when it was inconvenient. Fromke went to be with the Lord last Friday (October 28th, 2016). And heaven is now richer. But there is a lesson to be learned.[Continue Reading…]