I read this quote today:
The fact that it was on the paper tab of my tea bag, or that it came from Coco Chanel didn’t lessen the fact that this is both a powerful and scary quote. Scary because what if “they” find out what I truly think?
I was reminded that it will all be shouted from the rooftops someday soon anyhow. I just read these words from Jesus last night:
“Whatever you have said in the dark will be heard in the light, and what you have whispered behind closed doors will be shouted from the housetops for all to hear!” Luke 12:3 NLT
I was reading this book recently that said we must overcome the fear of man and what “they” think about what you think. I thought, ‘what would I share if I didn’t have such fear of what “they” thought?’ Instantly I thought of a really fun amazing and eye-opening experience I had a few months ago and imagined sharing it. Central to this experience was the phrase, “To him who sits on the throne and unto the lamb”.
As I pondered on that, I turned the page of that same book I was reading. That same exact phrase was the bolded first sentence of the next chapter!! Wow! So now what?
A month has passed and I still haven’t shared… anything. You see, I’m not even courageous these days to share the title of the book I was reading lest you not approve of the author and therefore judge and reject me.
I’m shell-shocked lately by the judgement and rejection of others. I’m in my cave as of late. I’d rather not be.
The Dangers of Thinking For Yourself
To “think for yourself” is a great sounding thought until you try to explain it to a four-year old and realize, that this little one doesn’t yet possess enough facts or info or even have all the mental resources to think for herself yet. In the grand scheme of God’s universe, aren’t we all “little ones” and still “wet behind the ears”?
Thoughts are dangerous things after all aren’t they?
As I attempted to explain it to my daughter, I thought, what could I tell her? “Don’t listen to anyone elses wisdom and advice and just think your own thoughts? Make up your own mind? Don’t listen to your Mama and Papa?”
That’s ridiculous. None of us should strike out on our own and disregard all others and all their valuable wisdom.
But hopefully that’s not what we are talking about here or what the quote is really all about anyway. It is about fearlessly offering your perspective on what you think is true without fear of the backlash.
That takes guts. Especially when your around other Christians.
Did I just say that… out loud?
For some reason that “supposed” Ghandi quote is coming to mind:
“I like your Christ, I do not like your Christians. Your Christians are so unlike your Christ.”
Whether Ghandi actually said it is beside the point.
But never mind. The above quote is bunk and here is why. True Christians are famous for their love. Love is what they are known for. (Perhaps you haven’t met any real Christians yet? I pray you will soon.) True Christians do not judge because their Master, the one whom they so devotedly follow, told them not to. Christians love others well and do not condemn others because the One they follow told them not to. Christians are the funnest, funniest, most generous, and warm-hearted people you could ever hope to meet because they have become like the One they follow. Prostitutes and homosexuals feel acceptance and love in the presence of Christians because they live and love as Jesus does. Christians ARE like their Christ because Christ is in them and has filled them to overflowing with his love and deep compassion.
I want to become a Christian. Don’t you?
So back to the point of this article and hopefully I will work up the courage to share my “experience”.
You have insight and thoughts that no one else has. You have a piece of the puzzle that no one else has. You bring with your perspective and experiences a new way of looking at the world and God that is interesting and beautiful. No one else will experience God and life the way you do. Your experience is precious and valuable and I for one want to share that experience with you. I for one, value you and what you bring to the table.
We may see things differently. That’s ok. I figure as long as we are both in relationship with the One who is Truth, we will both get ironed out and set right in due time. There is room to breathe and grace to grow. We are both on a journey toward truth and we are humble enough to shed our false beliefs once they are exposed.
One thing I did explain to my daughter was to allow our thoughts to be governed by God’s Word. The verse of the day:
“All Scripture is inspired by God and is useful to teach us what is true and to make us realize what is wrong in our lives. It corrects us when we are wrong and teaches us to do what is right.” 2 Timothy 3:16 NLT
I’ll be the first to admit it. In my quest for truth, I open my heart like a little child and, as I submit my quest to Jesus, I feel completely free to be open, curious, and trusting, knowing that I have a loving Papa who is going to direct and correct and lead me into all truth and remind me of Scripture that put me back on his path when I get it wrong. We all get it wrong from time to time… but I hope we can have the humility to admit it.
The last six months has been a life altering and learning transition for me. I wish I could share it all with you but much of it is superfluous to the focus of Pauls outward ministry and life. Paul said:
“For I decided that while I was with you I would forget everything except Jesus Christ, the one who was crucified.” 1 Corinthians 2:2 NLT
Yes he knew and had experienced a great deal more of the kingdom of Christ than he ever let on (He visited heaven perhaps many times) but the most valuable thing for everyone involved was to keep the person of Christ and the cross central. And of course, we will do the same. So help us God. This foundation has been at the forefront of my mind as I have learned a great deal that has stretched my mind in ways I would never have imagined. I really feel as though I was and am (as I remain open and willing to) awakening to the true nature of Christ and Reality. My prayer life was all of a sudden something I really looked forward to. I was experiencing Papa and Yeshua in ways I’d long since nearly forgotten and continue to have wondrous fellowship with him.
A Fun Story
So here is a fun exciting story that illustrates and hints at the kinds of things I’ve been experiencing with Jesus.
I had watched a Near Death Experience video of a woman who met Jesus and was taken back in time to observe certain things. (Her story made me think of “A Christmas Carol” in which Scrooge was shown himself in the past, the present, and a possible future. I now think that perhaps the author, or someone he knew or had heard about, had experienced exactly what he wrote about… well, it could be.)
Here is her story if you’re interested:
And here is my story:
On a certain day in February 2014 I had some time in between concerts and so I went to a park and sat in my car and prayed, “Lord, It would be amazing if you would take me time traveling to observe something.” (This idea wasn’t out of my realm of experience as one of the first things I had experienced when I came back to Christ at eighteen was a time travel trip.)
I laid back in my car seat at a park and waited for something cool to happen…
I continued to spend some time praying for others and went to my concert at the Nursing Home.
During my concert I just so happened to pick up a song out of my guitar case that I had just picked up recently after shelving it for ten years, “To Him Who Sits on the Throne”. I began to say, “I really love this song because ten years ago I had a very vivid dream in which I was observing myself play this song and thought, wow, those are some interesting chords. I tried to pay attention as best I could and that is how I came to learn how to play this song.”
Then it hit me.
Our Papa has an amazing way of answering our prayers!
I came home telling my wife, “I’m a time traveller! Isn’t that awesome?”
What’s next Papa?
The Message (MSG)
15-17 This resurrection life you received from God is not a timid, grave-tending life. It’s adventurously expectant, greeting God with a childlike “What’s next, Papa?” God’s Spirit touches our spirits and confirms who we really are. We know who he is, and we know who we are: Father and children. And we know we are going to get what’s coming to us—an unbelievable inheritance! We go through exactly what Christ goes through. If we go through the hard times with him, then we’re certainly going to go through the good times with him!
Here is the video version of that same story: