Having a Revelation Up in Here

While working yesterday as most people were off having barbecues and pool parties for Labor Day, I had a revelation of Spirit which i would not have learned had I been anywhere else. Cool how God uses where we are to teach.
All my life I’ve tried to be a good guy for ladies I’ve dated and people I have interacted with in general. Respectful, in control of my temper, in control of my body, trying not to focus on sexuality or have relationships based on that and I look around now and feel like I have no one about me that cares. Of course I have good friends and family I can talk to and laugh with and share many great memories and adventures with, which is in itself an incredible blessing, but it is not the same. Any of you who have true love know this to be true and my truest love pushed away and obliterated me from her life. I have been thinking, if this is what happens from fighting my sinful nature, (and often have i lost that battle, but each time I learn more about winning and have begun to avoid some traps altogether), why on earth should I continue battling to be a decent guy? Why not just give in and go looking for a different girl at every club and bar? Why would I continue fighting urges and not allow myself to be a womanizer or drunkard or stoner or layabout and just focus on getting mine? I asked myself, why? God asked me why I do what I do also. I am at this junction so I can answer Him. Will I strive to be a better quality of man for an incredible woman, or will I do it for Him when there is no woman to love, protect and uplift? I am stronger because of this and because God put me here to learn of my true motivation and to show me what that is and why it is worth it. I have been brought here because God wanted me to know my real reasons. Thank you my friends for showing me who I do not want to become, for being with me through my heartbreak and for talking openly with me and helping me to realize why exactly I want to be more than the world’s standard of guy, more than my own standard of what a man should be. Love of a woman isn’t enough to keep any man on the straight and narrow. No one person should be responsible for all that. People act rashly and run away when afraid or hurt, and sometimes for no reason at all. We all have let people down. I cannot think of anyone I have ever not disappointed in some small way or other. Can you? Because we are not perfect. That is why life and love are about forgiveness. It does not matter  how many times or how badly someone has “let me down.” People will let me down, I will let others down and if they are my only motivator, even a strong love with a beautiful girl like her can become fruitless and the sand will shift and fall away. I want to be more because God loves me more. I let her down and perhaps she thought she let me down too, i do not know but given the chance, I would prove my love for God through Christ to her and be the best for Him. Without that chance for her, I will put my goals in God’s hands anyway and not be consumed by lust or pain or sorrow or lethargy.

That old cliche “If you truly love something set it free” is true. When you really love someone you care about their happiness and joy. When two people in a relationship love each other they put their partner’s desires first and in doing so, they each get what they wanted after all, their love to be fruitful, passionate, happy and working to achieve goals. So, let your love be free. Whatever their definition of freedom. Let them have fun and live and make new friends. Do not let jealousy or fear of losing them get the best of you. Love them for their Style, their faith, their courage, their personality. Love all of these things when they change, because we all change. You arent the same person you were 3 years ago and in another 5 you wont be the same you are today. If they want to dress differently than youre used to, don’t freak out, grow and appreciate their style. Its just clothes. Its the inside that counts 😉

Let them grow in their own life as they choose. You can grow together while separate and separately while together. If you are protecting their heart, trust they will protect yours. Thats love. Two ropes intertwined to create a stronger rope woven of respect, trust, forgiveness, loyalty, freedom, and so much more beauty than words can express. When one strand is frayed or worn, the other supports and strengthens it until it can be mended. As long as God is holding that rope, it can bear any weight.
God is the mender, the great healer and your rope will not snap so long as you look to Him to keep it strong.

I love you

Grace and Peace,

Andrew

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The Heart of a Servant

During my brief time here on Earth I have learned this if nothing else, how valuable and sought after are people who are willing to help without hesitation at a moment’s notice. The ones who go the extra mile. The heart of a servant is one of the most cherished qualities among people when we look for friends or spouses. We all want people in our life we know without a doubt we can trust to be there when we need them just as we too should strive to be that person who gives without expecting a return and who loves unconditionally, always, especially when what we really want to do is freak out or get angry or hurt. Showing kindness and compassion is not only commanded of us by God, but is appreciated by our fellow humans.

Being humble and gracious are clear indicators of a servant’s heart. Watch people, see how others react to certain situations and pay close attention to how you react also. I know I have much to learn and even farther to grow to get where God wants me to be.

Trying to serve, trying to be gracious, trying to love without condition or be a friend without expectation is frustrating and at times very painful, people take advantage of tender-hearts, do these things anyway. Even if you never receive recognition here the Lord watches you and knows of your faithfulness. Above all else be faithful to the Master and keep his commandments. “But remembering to do all that stuff is hard!” It really is not, when you remember what Jesus said in Matthew 22:37-39

“Teacher, which is the most important commandment in the law of Moses?” Jesus replied, “‘You must love the Lord your God with all your heart, all your soul, and all your mind.’ This is the first and greatest commandment. A second is equally important: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’ On these commandments hinge all of the law and the prophets.”

When these are forefront in our lives, God recreates us and we seek to do good and our heart is turned from a heart of stone into a heart of flesh as it is written in Ezekiel 36:26-27

“I will give you a new heart and put a new spirit in you; I will remove from you your heart of stone and give you a heart of flesh. And I will put my Spirit in you and move you to follow my decrees and be careful to keep my laws.”

“Move you”, notice the Lord did not say “Control” you or “Force” you. His Spirit dwelling within us speaks to and pushes us to do these things, but it is still our conscious decision to live as such. Following these commands brings glory to God. It is a better way to live, bringing peace to your world even amidst hardships. Bring joy to your friends and love to those who hate you, especially when no one else sees you.
A true servant’s heart does for others more than for ourselves. I must share because the love of God within me prompts me to do so. I must love because the light of Christ at work within pours out of me, flows through me. If I stopper it up, it bursts forth anyway, until is free I am not myself nor do I feel at home. I cannot squelch my passion nor mask my face. We are called to be a city on a hill, we are lamps set on a stand, giving light, bringing hope to all who see us. We are servants of the most high and when we live as such, our servant’s heart rejoices and I myself, am content. What does that mean? Do unto others as you really want them to do to you and let not your heart be troubled. Pick up your slack, carry your weight along with those around you, and never weaken others in their faith. Instead be a strong link fastened to God in Christ and perpetually focus your heart and mind on Him. Whichever direction you are looking is the way you end up traveling. Pray for me that I not let my eyes wander again. I pray the same over you. I do not like the results I get when living for myself.

2 Corinthians 4:5-6 NIV

“For what we preach is not ourselves, but Jesus Christ as Lord, and OURSELVES AS YOUR SERVANTS for Jesus’ sake. For God, who said, “Let light shine out of darkness,” made his light shine in our hearts to give us the light of the knowledge of God’s glory displayed in the face of Christ”

Grace and Peace,

Andrew

War

Do you ever get tired of fighting? Maybe someone hurt you or you hurt someone else and everyday after that is turmoil in your heart and mind. You pray for reconciliation and cry for the pain caused and felt, but seemingly nothing changes and may even get worse. Whatever your reason for fighting, do what is necessary for reconciliation. “Blessed are the peacemakers, for they will be called children of God.” Matthew 5:9

When someone wrongs you forgive them and move past it. It is written, love your neighbor as yourself. When we hold grudges against the ones we are called to love and be a light for, we erect barriers in our heart against God. Matthew 5:23 “Therefore, if you are offering your gift at the altar and there remember that your brother or sister has something against you, leave your gift there in front of the altar. First go and be reconciled to them; then come and offer your gift.” We are not even in the right place to offer our gifts to God when we are angry or we know someone else is angry with us. If you have the opportunity, reconcile whenever possible, as quickly as you are able and then head back to the altar to praise God for the chances He gives you to glorify Him.

“Settle matters quickly with your adversary who is taking you to court. Do it while you are still together on the way, or your adversary may hand you over to the judge, and the judge may hand you over to the officer, and you may be thrown into prison.” Matthew 5:25

Turn the other cheek, reconcile, if they sue for your shirt, give them your cloak as well. If anyone forces you to go one mile, go with them two. Do not take an eye for an eye. “But I tell you, love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you, that you may be children of your Father in heaven. He causes His sun to rise on the evil and the good, and sends rain on the righteous and the unrighteous. If you love those who love you, what reward will you get? Even the tax collectors do that. And if you greet only your own people, what are you doing more than others?…” Matthew 5:43-47

Do not try to impose salvation on others. Present the truth and let them do with it what they will. You are not responsible for being someone’s savior. You cannot do it. Trying to save them from themselves or from others, especially when they do not want you to will only bring you more pain and frustration and maybe even other consequences. It is good to defend the helpless and the weak, but do not stay where you are not wanted. “If anyone will not welcome you or listen to your words, leave that home or town and shake the dust off your feet.” Matthew 10:14 When we continue to chase after people or constantly throw scripture at them, even with the best of intentions, we begin to push them away and build barriers around them instead of tear down walls that were already there. Let them run, pray for them and never give up. No matter what. God is waaaay better at bringing people home than you or I will ever be.

Oh, and remember when you pray that God is in control. Do not pray selfishly, but pray for His will to be done. Pray for the person you chase. Pray for the person who runs. Pray for all the people who like living in darkness because it is what they have grown used to. Those who have tasted the light will return to it because God is sweeter than any earthly high. Those who do not know it will hear it.

We are not saviors, we are presenters of Truth. Let people make their decisions. Jesus is the Way, the Truth and the Life. Spread the gospel and let God handle the rest. For those I have tried to save from poor decisions or from themselves or from going places I thought would hurt them, I am sorry. I forget my place as a servant sometimes and think I know best. I pray your forgiveness and God’s redemption.

If you know someone has something against you, or you have a burden you carry in your heart for someone else, go today and fix it. Go while you have the opportunity or it may be taken from you. Live like there is no tomorrow. Live like you will never have the chance to speak with people in your life again. Live like you will never have the choice to love and reconcile again. Live for the satisfaction of tomorrow, not in the temporary fake joys of a fallen world. You will be hurt by them. Even those who seem to have everything feel regret and wish for chances to do things over. If you want to live with no regret, live your life to the glory of God, and do not make choices you will regret. War is a terrible thing. War of the heart is equally terrible and people get hurt either way. Love to the best of your ability and let the real Savior handle the rest.

Grace and Peace,

Andrew

Reconcile

Reconcile

New Day

Today I interview with the Art Director’s club of Denver for Student board member Chair. Thing is, I am not sure if I will continue being a student for much longer. With all the changes and surprises lately, God may have a whole other road for me to travel. I am very excited about the possibilities and opportunities before me  and cannot wait to see what comes next.
What do you do when faced with tough decisions? I am so ready for a new phase of life to spread out before me. Have you ever felt that way? Something I just realized, though, is that every single second is an entirely new phase. Writing this instead of sleeping in or playing a video game could lead to something amazing but is, in itself, a new time where instead of doing the same thing over and over again, I chose to do something great. Make every decision count and if something scares you, that is even more reason to do it, IF the option is a righteous one or is not sinful nor will it cause another to sin. Get me? Writing on a blog may not be a world changing event, but then again, maybe it will be…

Grace and Peace

newlife

My Turn

I asked you all to pray for me earlier this week. Thank you so very much for your prayers. Now I am lead to pray for all of you, along with myself in this. My heart has been stirred and is now boiling with compassion and hope. I fear I have wasted time in doubt which lead to despair when all I had to do was turn around appreciate the blessings He granted me in His love and grace. For my foolishness I have been forgiven and now I turn to the Lord in strength and love.

         Grace in itself cannot be earned, because it is undeserved kindness or forgiveness. We are granted so much in this life! Even when it seems we have very little, we are always missing something fundamental that we have to be thankful for. Life itself. People everywhere wish they were dead or commit suicide or kill others or simply grow old or sick before laying down, but in all of our final moments we feel the gravity of what it means to be alive. The complexity of life and of breathing this air we rarely think about. The pounding of our heart inside our chest and the pulses of thought racking our brain day in, and day out, through every waking moment and in our deepest sleep. I praise You, Oh Lord, for my breath. Praise You, for my food I ate today when many have none. Let not your light nor mercy be stifled in me but be a beacon, brighter than any sun unto the nations! 

          Father, every one of us live in a self-centered universe seeking our desires and selfish wants and perceived needs. We seek glory and power and money and popularity above Your will. We take what we can when we can whether it hurts someone or not. I do not want to live in a self-made hell. I want to live in You! I want to feel your glory coursing in my veins, flowing beneath my skin and hear Your words pour from my mouth! Long have I lived in darkness and futility letting sin and fear and shame and doubt control my every movement. You have cleansed me of my sin. You have pardoned me and brought me out of shame into the light that all my deeds be seen. I am unafraid to admit my mistakes in praise that you use them to the good of those who love You, Master!

I am unashamed to stand before all of you and say that I am a sinner, but by the grace of God I am whole again and I love each of you as much as myself. You are my family. I pray you feel a joy and contentment and peace that truly passes ALL understanding. An incomprehensible stillness inside that just makes you smile and cry tears of joy in a crowded room without hesitation. Worshiping in openness without reservation excites my flesh! Give them your will in clarity Father! Shine among these people that they see you instead of me. Empty me of me that I may delight in you fully! You are the One and Only. You alone are worthy and Holy. I pray these members seek your face and strive to live holy and blameless in your sight, for you see all we do in secret. Whatever we cannot admit to others, may I not deny it to myself but instead see the truth of my actions and motivations and commit my ways to you! Establish all our paths, Abba. Lay us down in green pastures beside still waters. Restore our souls that we not seek approval of others, but live to serve and make you proud! I love You! In the name of Jesus who gave up our most precious gift to give us more than we have ever deserved.

     1 Corinthians 13   “If I speak in the tonguesof men or of angels, but do not have love, I am only a resounding gong or a clanging cymbal.If I have the gift of prophecy and can fathom all mysteries and all knowledge, and if I have a faith that can move mountains, but do not have love, I am nothing. If I give all I possess to the poor and give over my body to hardship that I may boast,but do not have love, I gain nothing. Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud.It does not dishonor others, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth.It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres. Love never fails. But where there are prophecies, they will cease; where there are tongues, they will be stilled; where there is knowledge, it will pass away. For we know in part and we prophesy in part, but when completeness comes, what is in part disappears. When I was a child, I talked like a child, I thought like a child, I reasoned like a child. When I became a man, I put the ways of childhood behind me. For now we see only a reflection as in a mirror; then we shall see face to face. Now I know in part; then I shall know fully, even as I am fully known. And now these three remain: faith, hope and love. But the greatest of these is love.”

          Matthew 5:43-48   “You have heard that it was said, ‘Love your neighbor and hate your enemy.’ But I tell you, love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you, that you may be children of your Father in heaven. He causes his sun to rise on the evil and the good, and sends rain on the righteous and the unrighteous.If you love those who love you, what reward will you get? Are not even the tax collectors doing that?And if you greet only your own people, what are you doing more than others? Do not even pagans do that?Be perfect, therefore, as your heavenly Father is perfect.

        John 15:5-9   “I am the vine; you are the branches. If you remain in me and I in you, you will bear much fruit; apart from me you can do nothing. If you do not remain in me, you are like a branch that is thrown away and withers; such branches are picked up, thrown into the fire and burned. If you remain in me and my words remain in you, ask whatever you wish, and it will be done for you. This is to my Father’s glory, that you bear much fruit, showing yourselves to be my disciples.As the Father has loved me, so have I loved you. Now remain in my love.’ “

 

Much love, grace and peace

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Faith Alone

I once thought myself a broken man.

I believed I had given all I had and still was not enough.

I once thought myself empty.

I believed I was an evil creature.

I once thought I was doomed in a cycle;

Running in circles.

I believed I was unworthy;

Now I know, I am all of these;

But now I know, even in failure I am whole.

Now I know, though I live in the flesh, by faith alone am I redeemed.

Now I know, my actions do not define my salvation; though they do create my character here;

By faith am I free.

Faith alone.

“For the Scriptures tell us, ‘Abraham believed God, and God counted him as righteous because of his faith.'” Romans 4:3

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