Archive for May, 2013

Humor in failing

So I just couldn’t resist sharing this story. I picked out waking at 5am for now. I want something that I can’t maintain in my strength, but I also want to build up. 5:40 I’ve done enough, but I never have time. So anyway, I pull it off one day, then the next this happens.

First we fall asleep on the couch, not the strangest thing in my family. I make it up, try to move her to bed, and fail, again not out of the ordinary.

Then my wife finally comes wandering in at……4:50. This presents a couple problems
1) she doesn’t know how early I’m getting up, I haven’t exactly explained this to her, she just knows I get up early. So I can’t just get up, or I’ll have an explanation at 4:50am, not the best time for explanations
2) my alarm will go off in 10 minutes, and there is no way she will be asleep enough to sleep through that.

So I do the only reasonable thing, I turn it off and wait for her to fall asleep to sneak out. I think we all know how that will end.

The best part is I don’t even know that I can blame the enemy on this, seems too perfect for even that, more like God playing a joke and getting a little laugh out of it.

– Posted using BlogPress from my iPhone


I posted a while back about tongues, but as usual I didn’t stick it out.  That’s part of what I’m doing here now, sticking it out.  I’ve started to wait more in the morning.

I bought another series from Brother Sadhu about Holiness.  In the first or second message he spoke about tongues.  He was talking about how when the Tower of Babel happened, everyone spoke God’s language, but after that, all the languages of the world were created, and no one spoke God’s language anymore.  We need the Spirit to interpret.  Tongues however is a heavenly language.  Praying in tongues is letting the spirit pray for us, for as the scriptures say, we don’t know what we need to pray.  This is a great gift from God to the believer.  Yet I’ve continued to neglect it.  He said that early in his life, before his ministry exploded, he would often spend 3 to 4 hours a day praying in tongues.  I believe this is either:

1) The advantage of being single and focused on ministry

2) The result of someone who is truly serious about God.

He continued to say he’s heard that one hour a day is the minimum we should pray in tongues.  That seemed a bit shocking to me.  I can list my day out… it’s something like

5.5 hours – sleep

1-1.5 hours – Quiet time/waiting

1-1.5 hours – Driving, often in worship or listening to sermons, sometimes just prayer

8 hours – work

1 hour – lunch, sometimes includes some time with the Lord

2-3 hours – Family time, dinner, etc

1-1.5 hours – Getting child ready for bed.

Adds up to about 23 hours, lost 1 somewhere in there.

Having said all that, I would have trouble coming up with an hour to pray.  He then continued on to tell us to test him out.  Devote an hour a day for a month to praying in tongues, and then see if our lives have changed.  If not, you can come back to him.  He seemed convinced of this fact.

So let’s try.  I’m all about sacrifices to actually do something now.  I’m tired of the normal christian life that leads to the same struggles.  I’m going to set a reminder for myself on June 17 to write another blog post, I’ll let you know how it goes.  So far I’m on day #2.  First day was on the way home from work(almost got in a whole hour), today was while mowing.  I’d like to be just sitting still before the Lord, but there’s only so much time during the day to pull that off.

So after listening to Sadhu, a couple new things hit me. First was some of the results he gave from waiting on the Lord. He took that scripture and broke it into the 4 things that happen from waiting on the Lord

1. They will renew their strength

2. They will mount up on wings like eagles

3. They will run and not grow weary

4. They will walk and not grow faint

Then he gave his own life experiences for each of these points. He spoke about how he gets up crazy early to spend time in prayer. We’re not talking like 5am, we’re talking 3am. I kept wondering how in the world he would function, but he pointed out that the Bible mentions that Jesus would sometimes do it as well. So it’s energized me to get up earlier again. So the last few days I’ve gone to bed at a normal time, but then gotten up early. I’ve actually probably averaged about 5 hours of sleep a night. Typically I’m a 6-hour guy. I can go off a 5 for a little bit. I’m waiting to see what happens, but so far it’s been really odd, I’ve felt more awake. I don’t think it hit me until afterward, but I believe I’m seeing some of the above. I think the extra time spent waiting on God is giving me energy, making me not grow weary. It hasn’t been long enough, so I’m actually not even going to finish this post right now, but hold onto it a couple days to see if it continues, but it’s been pretty odd for me, enough that I am noticing.

Day 3 – got a little rougher today. I left work feeling like I’m going to fall asleep on the way home. But I made it.

Day 4 – Little better today.  Wasn’t falling asleep in car, exhausted at end of day(it’s past 12 now), but had energy for the day, and less than 6 hours last night(closer to 5)

Day 5/6 – Little trouble making it up, but still made it up.  Plenty of energy for the day, exhausted by 11pm, but that’s to be expected.

Day 7(or was it 8) – Saturday(Today), took a chance to sleep in.  Still got up in enough time to get in around 30 minutes of waiting, and another 30 minutes of quiet time.

I want to push this up.  I’ll start moving it forward farther ( already get up by 5:30-5:40 usually ), I’d like to get close to 5, because I want some time to worship for a while, then meditate on the word, then waiting.  Morning is my time.  I think I’ll just have to deal with that and trust in the Lord to renew my strength.

Thanks to a previous comment, I now have something amazing.  Youtube videos of Sadhu Sundar Selvaraj.  I’ve heard his named mentioned by a couple other men of God that I listen to, and only had a small message or two of his, but here is a series of four messages of him talking exlusively about Waiting on God and Walking with God.  The same thing that I am desiring so badly.  Initially this just drove home the similarities between what he is preaching and what Neville has.  They come from different angles, but seem to have the same core truths.  Here’s the list that Sadhu gave of the five things to do to reach this.

1. Learn how to build fellowship with God(Sadhu) – Sounds like practicing His presence(Neville)

2. Learn how to properly meditate on the Word of God(Sadhu) – Revelation transforms our mind(Neville)

3. Learn the art of waiting on God(Sadhu) – Waiting on God, visualizing him(Neville)

4. Live a life of holiness(Sadhu) – Same basic message of holiness(Neville)

5. Live a life of obedience(Sadhu) – Bond-servant(Neville)

The only big difference I really saw was that Neville focused more on the visual piece of this.  For Him it was the waiting on God and picturing Him.  For Sadhu the focus was more on clearing your mind of everything and becoming completely still.  My main concern here is that when I become still, I don’t seem to have that love that I get by trying to focus my vision and feelings on the Lord.  Perhaps I should be visualize more during the day, thinking on him, focusing my love on Him, but then getting still and just waiting for Him.

So, having said this, the videos below are a must watch.  I went through them all in about 3 days, and it was just so much info, I’m having to go through them again.  He’s such a good speaker and he has sooo much to say.  It’s amazing the stories and how real he is.  It’ll stir you up.  Can’t think of much else to say.

Watch the video here

Eternal Life

I am more and more convinced that one of the greatest deficits in the church is Eternal life, but not in the sense we make of it.  We lead people to Christ for “eternal life” which we define as getting to heaven, but that wasn’t God’s definition.

This is eternal life, that they may know You, the only true God, and Jesus Christ whom You have sent. – John 17:3

I’ve heard many times growing up in church that Christianity is not a religion but a relationship.  We talk it up, but I just don’t see it.  I see a lot of people skirting around the edges of hearing God, of reading signs in everything around them and making a guess.  It reminds me of when you hear someone call your name across the house.  You know it happened, but you’re just not sure where they are or what they said.

I got onto this because today I found myself struggling.  I start down a good path and somehow manage to turn my pursuit of God into a list of chores.  When I get caught up in the things I’m trying to do, and not the God that I do them to find, it starts falling apart.  I find myself struggling to stay focused, I lose my excitement and motivation, and I think much of it comes down to leaving God out of my religion.  I know it’s funny to say, but that’s what we have taught ourselves to do.

Let me just start with a quick update, I let a book pull me away.  Forgot how long it’s been since my last post, but obviously I was doing good, I think I got pulled away, came back, then I started listening to a book.  I need to go turn that off.  I get so caught up in books that it begins to dominate my thoughts and basically becomes an idol.  So for about 1-2 weeks, I was so caught up with the book that I lost sight of the important things.  It’s been a while since I’ve even been able to get some good time to wait on the Lord.

So the other day I’m praying and I’m trying to talk with the Lord about this journey.  I asked him if I should even be focused on this.  There’s so much else I could focus on, I’m sure if I asked a lot of people in the church or especially pastor’s, they could come up with “better” ways to use my time for the church.  I could be serving in lots of ways, even trying to help lead a group of men in the mornings like I’ve done before, yet I am jealous of this time.  I want to have my quiet times, I want to try and pull closer to the Lord.  So I asked Him if this effort to see Him was worthwhile.  The answer I got back was “How much is it worth”.

That’s it.  But that phrase kept going over in my head.  So I thought about it.  How much would it be wroth to see the Lord.  To be able to have a conversation with Him?  How much would it be worth to see where He is moving around me?  How much would it be worth to be so open to His presence that He can talk to me anytime and tell me things?  How much would it be worth to hear the secrets He wishes to reveal?  The answer is everything.  To have this sort of walk with the lord is worth more than anything else I can come up with.  Imagine how much more productive we can be for Him when we truly know Him.

I am reminded of the parables of the Kingdom, the treasure in the field, the pearl of great price.  In those parables, the Kingdom was worth more than anything else these people had.  I don’t know about you, but that doesn’t sound like the typical salvation of Americans.  We teach it as being saved, but when you look at our lives, salvation isn’t something we give all up for.  In some countries maybe, but not for us.  I have no revelation for this for now, but I can’t help but wonder if it’s not salvation, but relationship that is worth it all.  For this relationship we must give so much of our lives up to sanctify ourselves and get there.  I don’t have the right words for this for now and I don’t want to make it works based, yet there’s some of that there.  The struggle, the journey prepares us for the prize.  And oh there’s a cost.  I have paid some of it already, I see much more.  The cost of living with the fire.