Thursday, December 2, 2010

My dream last night

I had an extremely passionate dream last night. It also seemed to last for much of the morning time of my rest. As i begin to remember and write it, I pray the Lord will guide my heart and my mind, so that i can remember what i experienced last night.

Interesting enough, as i began to tell my wife about the dream on the way to work, she explained to me that she woke up last night at 4:30am, wide awake, and did not go back to sleep til sunrise. So she prayed intensely for our family and others, which was most certainly around the time i was in the mist of my dreaming. Glory to God for a praying wife.

What i believe was a prophetic dream...

I was traveling in a city. I cannot say that it is a place that i have been before, however it was familiar. As i walked through the crowd, i was suddenly moved into years later in that same spot. The brick buildings that were so prominent in my first reality were broken, decayed, obviously something drastic had happened during these 2 time periods.

The other new reality was that i was not alone, i had someone with me. Better stated, though i walked beside him, it was him leading our team.

As we entered one of these buildings, i felt very sure i had been her before. The building was much like a large warehouse, with all sorts of closets, offices, and rooms off of it. All of it very dirty, very worn and broken.

Initially i remember a great empty room, as we moved through it around a brick wall, we met the first few people. They were definitely human beings, however there was a "zombie" like presence about them. I drew my sword of light quickly (not light saberish, more like a rod of pure light). It was almost instantaneous as we would be approached by these beings, our heart would break for them, some would seem to come alive and recognize us. If they did, then it was like family had come alive again, and there was much peace, and they joined us as we moved forward. On the other hand, others seemed aggravated to our presence and stayed in their zombie like trance. A few times as i would prepare to attack these aggravated beings and my travel partner would stay my hand, and his eyes would meet theirs and they would come out of the trance. It was a beauty and grace i cannot describe well, even now.

The ones that did not come out of the trance, I attacked with the sword of light, and defeated. I cannot say where they went when i defeated them, but they dissipated completely. What i can say is that each time they did not come back to human form, and i was forced to defeat them, i was hurting both during and after the fighting. Although i felt deeply for the loss i was experiencing, my counterpart was more broken than i for each one. And yet each time, we moved forward to the next crowd of people.

This process of moving through the building meeting crowds of beings, and using the sword of light, lasted for a long time. Eventually, we entered into one of the rooms off of the second main room. At which point we met what i knew to be the enemy. I neither feared him, nor was scared to speak to him. As we prepared to enter into what i assumed was his office, he made me take a pair of silver crosses attached to the top of my shoes off. At my travel partners approval I did so, and we moved into the room with him. As we entered, i noted what seemed to be a very long dark hallway with hundreds of doors behind him.

As we sat down facing the enemy, i realized that my travel partner was the Christ. The enemy was slick. He was dressed well, and spoke well. At moments his speech was tempting. He spoke to both the Christ and myself. He was telling us how late we were in this, and that our losses on the way to him were great. It felt as if he was trying to convince himself and us that he was winning this particular battle.

More than once in this discussion as the enemy would speak directly to me, i would hear the Christ speak to me as well, with the words to answer him. The enemy had no idea that the Christ was doing this, and became more and more aggravated at my strong responses to him. Also more than once i watched the Christ correct or remind the enemy of something. His words were strong as a bullhorn, and yet soft as a whisper.

At some point the conversation began to wind down, and the enemy in one last ditch effort looked right at me and said, "i see that he does not fear me, but you, i believe you fear me" at which point i stated to him "I fear the Lord and the Lord alone." It was one of those moments where truly i was scared, and yet in boldness i moved forward. At that the enemy was gone, and we were left standing side by side once again headed down the hallway.

This is how i remember the dream ending, and i woke up very rested and full of peace.

As Jess and I spoke this morning about it, the one reality that come to mind immediately was that the enemy wanted us to believe that this city was already defeated. Yet in a very short time we had seen many that had been deceived by the enemy, and the world's trance had come out of it, and there was much joy. And that there were still hundreds of rooms filled with hundreds more beings that needed to experience the presence of the Christ.

Sunday, September 12, 2010

A way to live, thoughts from a conversation this week...

I have been marinating in a thought this week after a conversation i had with a brother in Christ. While in PA i took the opportunity to sneak over and see my friend in Lancaster, Geoff.

As Geoff and i began to catch up discussing God, family, and life. We were both awestruck on all that God was doing in our individual lives, and the lives around us. It seems obvious to say that God is up to a bunch of things, but maybe our awestruck emotions came more from our recognition of how the simple things are for His glory as well, not just the big moments.

As our discussion hit its mid way point, Geoff asked me a question. "Man how do you do it, how do you keep God first, your family second, and ministry/other third?" He wasn't asking because he did not know how, he was asking because Geoff wants to grow. So I pondered for a moment, and then said "I do my best to make small adjustments to my life everyday. Some people fear looking in the mirror and asking what else? I find great benefit in surrendering my life to God, and asking Him what is next? I don't spend much time in regret, rather repent."

Admittedly, i have tried to live this way for a while. You might say it is my form of living out Romans 12:1+2, paraphrased "that my life might be a living sacrifice holy and pleasing to God. And that by analyzing what part of my life is in the world, i might make small transformations so that i might live in His will".

The world we live in today, spends billions of dollars, hours of life, and every trick in the trade to tell us that the BIG moments in our life transform. And though i am for BIG moments, i do not find them transforming daily. Instead in my life i have found that the smallest decision towards my righteousness, builds on a daily basis, a foundation that is not sinking sand.

This was a beautiful moment for me during our conversation because i am not sure i had verbalized what i was trying to do by living this way each day. I just was, daily, in His Grace.

It reminded me of men and women all over the world that do BIG things; farmers, astronauts, fire fighters. Needless to say they face BIG moments in their lives. The planting and the harvest, the blast off and returning into the atmosphere, the 3 alarm fire in the middle of the night. But i would guess the majority of it is filled with small changes in their lives daily, so they can be ready for whatever comes their way.

I decided to share today, hoping that it would catch someone who is waiting for a BIG moment to change their lives. Maybe that is not what God is up to. Maybe today is about being honest looking in the mirror and making some small adjustments. So that as He transforms us, we will be ready to live. Then tomorrow and the next day we can do it all over again.

ROMANS 12: 1Therefore, I urge you, brothers, in view of God's mercy, to offer your bodies as living sacrifices, holy and pleasing to God—this is your spiritual[a] act of worship. 2Do not conform any longer to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God's will is—his good, pleasing and perfect will. NIV

Selah - Pause and reflect - His Grace, His Peace, and His Power in you today -

Saturday, April 3, 2010

6 Months...

Many of you are well aware of the story of our Niece Katy. Katy is the 14 yr old daughter of some very good friends of ours. This past Sept 30th, she was admitted to Vanderbilt Hospital with stomach pains, and then diagnosed with salmonella, which almost took her life more than once, while destroying a good part of her colon. Over the next 8 weeks we watched Katy fight for her life, and in the Lord's graciousness he restored her.

Well after 4 months of recovery, Katy returned for surgery this past tuesday to see if the doctors could repair what was damaged in her colon. I am happy to say that not only was it repairable but Ms. Katy is healing incredibly quickly.

My beautiful wife Jessi got to spend a moment with Katy last night at the hospital, and as i waited for her, i was struck by the resounding beauty of the celebration of the resurrection of our savior. While the world pauses for 3 days, or even 40 if we are gracious, to remember what Jesus has done through the cross.

As a follower of Christ, and a lover of Him, it is our great joy to live a life knowing that He is alive and still up to raising the dead, healing the sick, standing up for the poor, and holding little children. I am truly astounded by the number of ways that he shows His love for us. And that He has left us to also show His love to the world.

All of us know someone who has faced a illness or accident, and has not made it. We live in a broken world. However, without minimizing that pain, i do want to encourage Christians, aka people who live life as if Christ is still alive and busy loving the world. That we must be a voice of hope, and not of brokeness. It seems far too often we accept that brokeness, pain, illness, and such is "just part of it." And again in this world it is, but it was never His plan and still is not.

Today and tomorrow it is my hope that you (like our family) will celebrate the resurrection with a community of believers some where. As we do, let me encourage all of us to take a moment, recognize the awe of having a living active Christ in our world now, and decide that His life, not the worlds death is what deserves our time, talent, and calendar. For when the world stops their celebration, let us resound with ours, and as John 14 says, lets live that way til He returns or we go home to be with Him.

Monday, March 15, 2010

Customer Service is not dead...give credit where it is due...

Wanted to pass on some quick "UP's" where they are due. A week ago this morning, i arrived at the airport at 5am to fly out of town. As i arrived, i took one last look at my e-ticket, and to my misfortune, it seems that i had been Pricelined... Yes, i used this service to book my ticket, put that i was flexible on my travel times, but not on my dates of travel. And to my dismay, it booked my ticket exactly a week later than it showed me on the screen. (Now let me pause and say, there is a chance this is my fault, and i will accept that, however in this case, i am pretty sure, i saw the dates i was trying to book online as correct).

The lady at Continental could see the worry on my face. And smiled kindly as she heard my plea for help. Mind you at this point, i had my credit card out, and knew a fee of great proportion was coming. Never the less i had to get out of town today. After a few minutes of tapping and working, she had me on a flight a few hours later, and no upgrade fee. She even prepped me to fly standby on my connecting flight. She then directed me to another carrier to fix my return flight. I was stunned, and thankful.

As i headed over to the Delta counter, i saw a gentlemen, who just as kindly heard my plea for help. He tapped away, and i thought againn, better get my $ out. This time however, he explained that he could not help me. And if Continental was willing to help i should go see them about this flight as well. I asked one last time, "Even though this is a Delta flight, i should go back over there?" He said yes, and warned me of a $200 fee coming my way.

So i head back to Continental, where she asks me what else she can do for me. I explain what Delta said, and she began tapping again. Within 5 minutes, she had fixed my ticket completely, again, ready at NO COST. During our small talk while she was tapping, she told me she was still trying to wake up. So as she finished, i headed towards Sbux, and picked her up a Grande with half/half. The bible is clear, that we are to honor those, who deserve so. Priceline and / or my negligence could have started this day with much worry and unforeseen cost. But instead someone cared enough to spend 5 minutes and fix my day.

Admittedly more often than not, my expectations are greater than the customer service i receive. However, today, my expectations were blown away, and when this deal is over, i plan to make sure that Continental knows how good they have it with this Lady at the counter. And recommend her to moved to a CS trainer and overseer. To all of you who serve in the world of C.S., thanks today was a great reminder it is not dead!