What are You Afraid of ?

Man on Wire (Great Movie!)

Those who fear
have not been made perfect in love.
There IS NO FEAR  in love
Perfect love CASTS OUT FEAR (1 John 4:18)

When you are pondering the Way,
ask yourself, am I afraid?
Love and fear do not work together.
If you are angry, ask yourself
what is beneath the anger
Is it fear?

What are you afraid of?
Are things spinning out of control?
Is anyone at the wheel?
Is evil and chaos ruling the world?
Is there a sovereign God?
Is He absent?
Is He concerned with the affairs of men?
Does He intervene?

God is working ALL THINGS
in accordance with the counsel of
HIS OWN WILL.
Ephesians 1:11

Every day
we awake to the reality
that we could lose
everything we love
in an instant
Yet we are commanded
Not to fear

There is a promise of a resurrection.
And Jesus said he defeated death
Although we don’t see it that way
We still see death
as the big scary thief
snuffing out lives

But Jesus died to rescue us
We who live each day
in fear of dying.
Hebrews 2:15
For if we live by faith
we have overcome death.
“They won the victory over him
by the blood of the Lamb 
and by the truth
which they proclaimed
and they were willing
to give up their lives
and die.”
Revelation 12:11

If we who are in Christ
have hope in this life only
(and this is all there is)
then we are, of all people
most miserable and to be pitied.
(1 Cor 15:19 Amplified )

If we live, we live for the Lord
and if we die, we die for the Lord.
So, whether we live or die,
we belong to the Lord.
Romans 4:18

Blessed are the dead
who die in the Lord
from this moment on
Yes, says the Spirit
for they will rest from their labors
and their deeds will follow them.
Revelation 14:13

The one who overcomes
will inherit all things
and I will be his God,
and he will be My son.

But to the cowardly and unbelieving
and abominable and murderers
and sexually immoral and sorcerers
and idolaters and all liars,
their place will be in the lake
that burns with fire and sulfur.
This is the second death.
Revelation 21:7-8

Notice being cowardly
and unbelieving
are listed before
murderers and sorcerers!

Last night as I lie awake in bed,
I was thinking about the trust game.
The one where you fall backwards
and let someone catch you.
I was thinking about letting go
and how important it is.
It is futile to grasp on
and try to control things.
All kinds of things.
What if we just let go?
What if we just let the world turn without us?
It does you know

The heavens declare the glory of God
the skies proclaim the work of His hands.
Day after day they pour forth speech
night after night they reveal knowledge
Without speech or language
without a sound to be heard

Trees shedding their leaves,
and blooming again
Fruit ripening
grasses sprouting
and withering

Effortlessly the sun rises and sets
The seasons move from winter to spring
and back again.
All without our fretting
Living and dying are happening
all around us
in a constant succession
A parade of life’s dramas
that we label good or bad
As we try to hold on
We try to grasp hold of life
and hide from death
All in vain

Unless you can let go completely,
how can you celebrate God’s control?
How can you celebrate Him
if you cannot trust Him?

There is no virtue in being fearful
There is no superiority in unbelief
You may as well be likened to a cheater, an adulterer, a murderer, a liar

We must begin to see how important this is
Your faith and love are not optional
They are required of you
They were given to you from above,
and are not to be buried or hoarded

They must become your very visible cloak
adorning you for His service
We are not our own
We are His purchased possession
which He paid dearly for.

In our Father’s house
are many mansions
Jesus went to prepare a place for us
And if he went to prepare a place
He will return and take us with Him
That we might be where His

“Do not let your hearts be troubled. You believe in God; believe in Me as well.
In My Father’s house are many rooms. If it were not so, would I have told you that I am going there to prepare a place for you? And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come back and welcome you into My presence, so that you also may be where I am.”
(John 14:1-3)

Acquainted with Grief

Struggling and sighing, tossing and turning
my heart is achy and dull
Then a flurry of emotion as I rearrange my pillow
and whisper to you a call

Jesus do you see me,  Jesus do you hear me
You know I wanna be by your side
The days are getting harder, the nights are getting longer
and you alone can turn the tide

My pillow becomes a boulder in a far away garden
hard and unforgiving and cold
My tears roll off its surface and drop to the ground
even as I cling to and hold

Let this cup pass from me, Father, I’m feeling so alone
All my so-called friends are asleep
I’m hanging on by a thread here, I’m all on my own
And I can do nothing but weep!

Fear has gripped me for I know that tomorrow
looms even darker than today
How can I bear it, I don’t have the strength
or even the will to pray

To do what you’ve asked is impossible it seems
What if I stumble and fall
Is it all for nothing, will it even matter
They’ve all left me after all

See my sweat has turned to great drops of blood
pouring out from my head
The pain and agony is too much to bear
and it hasn’t even started yet

My journey to the tree is on the horizon
the worst is yet to come
And it’s all up to me, Oh take this cup from me
This can’t be the way that it’s done

To take on sin, to get through this night
the angels are calming me down
Not by my will, not in my strength
but by your Spirit I will abound

christ-in-the-garden-julie-wittwer Christ in the Garden by Julie Wittwer

Even So Lord, Come

New year
new beginnings
time to break off attachments
to goals
successes, intentions
Something different this year
being dead to this world
and alive to God
Free from all worldly obligations and opinions
Devoted to God alone
What does God think?
What does God want?
What did He have in mind
when he made me
when he called me
Christ alone
the new Goal
for a new year
How do I quiet down
listen more closely to Him?
get still and know that He is God?
How do I serve him
love him
bring Him pleasure
appreciate him
How do I offer my gratitude?
And not grieve Him again and again
How do I steal away and spend time with Him?
Learning of him, seeking his face 
and becoming puddy in his hands?
His are the only safe hands
in which to entrust myself
my soul, my secrets, my fears
my very life
To trust Him completely
is the only way
Satan presents lie after lie
trying to smear God’s reputation
Trying to convince that
God is not real
certainly not caring
Deception is loud and constant
as you quietly wait for God
The greatest test
God hiding and watching
testing faith
What to choose..
to curse God?
agree with the liar?
that God is make believe?
a crutch for the foolish
and the weak?
only man is the source of hope or answers
{Eww…A gross depressing thought}
No, I will stand firm
I have fought the good fight
My faith has been tried
My God reigns supreme
I know my redeemer lives
Jesus will return
in a mighty and victorious way
Humanity will be humbled
Righteousness is clean true and holy
And about to be made manifest
The fear of the Lord is the beginning of knowledge
We are the sheep of HIS pasture
Not the other way around
He is the potter and we are mere clay
Oh Mighty One
how I long for your revealing
Even so, Come Lord Jesus!

Indeed, He who watches over Israel will neither slumber nor sleep. The sun will not harm you by day, nor the moon by night. The Lord will watch over your coming and going both now and forever more. Psalm 121:1

Identity Crisis

I feel autonomous
when in reality, I am enslaved.
I search for the most authentic
and honest version
of myself.
No hiding
No masks
Who am I?
The only answer lies
at the foot of the cross
surrendering to the one
who purchased me
with His own blood.
I die.
I consider myself dead
Emptying myself of myself
of all the bad, but also the good
I am dead and buried
with Him in baptism
and the life I now live
in this flesh
I live by faith
Up out of the waters
fresh and new
It’s no longer I that lives
But Christ lives in me
He has come
to make His home in me
I am His tabernacle
His temple
His place of rest
I am no longer my own
But Christ is being formed in me
by faith
every day
A slave to Him?
Yes.
If I am free,
I am Christ’s slave.
But if I am a slave
to sin or to man
or any other thing
then I am set free by Christ.
In a world of independence,
self-governance,
human rights,
women’s rights,
equal rights,
inalienable rights,
religious rights,
and self-expression
Jesus says,
Take my yoke upon you
and learn from me.
Is there another world view,
philosophy, goal or cause
worth being yoked to?
A greater cause
than the Master Himself?
Whose yoke is easy
whose burden is light
Trying to identify
with anything or anyone
else
will never bring
the freedom
the sufficiency
or the relief
as abiding in Christ
the True Vine
On Christ
the Solid Rock
Stand.
ALL other ground
is sinking sand
If your footing
is shifting
and you’re afraid you will fall
Fall back into Him
He will catch you
and make you
and mold you
Into His very Image
You could be nothing else
For you belong to Him
You were created by Him
The one who calls you is faithful
and He will do it

The Harlot

The Harlot

The one world religion
she rides on the beast
a system of systems
already in place

The seduction is simple
no controversy no shame
just one with creation
a walk in the woods
a nap by the brook
in your own private time
No need to commune
with anyone else
Nothing required
but settling down

There are no confines, no buildings
no songs or expressions
just a simple beholding
of the hum, the orchestra of nature

No talk of religion or doctrine or faith
No need for a Savior
No sin, no cross, no redemption, no resurrection
Just sit by the fire
and listen to sounds
of the here and now

This life is to be savored
It will never be again
Don’t waste it looking
to the heavens
Don’t look far ahead
Just stay in this moment
and rest your head

But the rest you are taking
Is not the Sabbath rest
The seventh day
or the seven thousandth year rest
the millennial kingdom
When Christ comes to earth
And rules from His throne
In Jerusalem
This is the rest
Creation cries for
When the sons of God are manifest
and evil is no more
When the powers of Satan
be chained down below
and deception and lies
are wiped out clean

Oh but all this is silly
When you have here and now
the power to be still
and to feel all is well

Prayer? Why that is just quieting down
No need for asking, for knocking, or seeking
No need for anything
just be lulled to sleep
Not a single debate, no right or wrong
Just bliss and peace all the day long

I would have gone for it myself,
if it weren’t for the scriptures
The God-men of old
with their wild stories of faith
of supernatural things

of freeing slaves
of parting seas
of drowning enemies
of slingshots and giants
of being thrown in a pit
only to rule kingdoms
and save unbelievers

of speaking in tongues
of a Savior who died,
and said many would follow
being tortured and mocked
and thrown into prisons

These peaceable Harlot types
they won’t be imprisoned
They won’t be hated or mocked
They’re above all of that
They have serene written upon them
and no fight is in them
Buddhism, Taoism,
and even the Hindus
already have the head start in this
This one world religion
That is accepting of all
This place of perfection
in nature, in earth

Oh my Jesus. My Shepherd, my brother
I have to press in and know you better
For if it were possible
she would deceive even me
even the very elect of God

But I will eat and drink
of your body and blood
and be an offense
if that is the case
I will sell all I have
and with the money
I’ll buy the one field
that has you hidden in it
The treasure eternal

I see how easy it will be
for the harlot to have
her way in the earth
With so much information
so many opinions, doctrines, ideas
So much arguing and so little peace

The fears will abate,
the noise quiets down
and she beckons to all
to just settle down
to listen to Nature
for she alone is God
and we must protect and preserve her
above all else

Your morality doesn’t matter
just try to be kind
and leave all the pettiness
of sin behind
No one is right, and no one is wrong
All is just one grand love song

And the people will bow
with such relief and gratitude
for they finally can live simply
with no one over them
but their own light
I am God
You are God
And the world turns
as it always has

Beheading of John the Bapti

The Waiting

The Waiting

Another morning
I am to praise you
for this is the day
the Lord has made
I am to rejoice and be glad in it

but the sad fact that you didn’t
show up in the night
and snatch me away
off to you
for us to be forever one
forever together
in love’s embrace
it’s the first thing I feel when I awake

The wait is not over
The watch is ongoing
and though you say
you are not slack
I have trouble with the duration

Up and out of bed
to face a world
that is still indifferent to you
to your love, your cross, your promises
A people who still squirm at your name
who don’t need You or Your Way

They have their own way
they have the world, the earth you made
the splendor of the gifts you gave
the roaring sea
the still starry sky
the mist of dew on the fields
they have their own peace

Your cross is too violent for these
too bloody
too controversial and despised
Your gospel interferes
Your words are too divisive
sin and blood and sacrifice
are not polite conversation

Your resurrection is a nice children’s story
your return is a fable for the weak-hearted
looking to escape reality

But you are my refuge
You are my hope
You are my future
Your promises are my joy

Your Way is narrow
And you said they hated you
Surely they will hate me too

The foolishness of God
is wiser than men
And the Wisdom of God
is foolishness with men

I am happy you require
such digging to find you
I am happy to be hidden in you
until you arrive for me

For I belong to you
You are my own Shepherd
The only voice I hear
And all other voices are dull to me
I don’t recognize them
I won’t follow them

I have such a sweet Savior
A sweet Master
A passionate Shepherd
That laid down his life for me

There is nothing else
but to wait
and to look, watching for Him
My soul thirsts for you
in a dry and thirsty land

Yet
You lead me beside still waters
You restore my soul
for another day
My cup runs over
even as I long for you

What a glorious love, You are
Jesus, the Christ
the Son of the Living God