Posts Tagged ‘instructions’

The Stubborn Heart

Jesus said to him, “If you can believe, all things are possible to him who believes.”
Immediately the father of the child cried out and said with tears, “Lord, I believe; help my unbelief!”
When Jesus saw that the people came running together, He rebuked the unclean spirit, saying to it: “Deaf and dumb spirit, I command you, come out of him and enter him no more!” (Mk. 9:23-25)

It has been my experience, that literally thousands of people struggle with unbelief. Real barriers stand between their desire and the reality of God’s Will! Like this father they hear the words that Jesus would love to heal, deliver or bring hope; but they are stuck. They know the truth that if they could just believe, nothing would be impossible… but there is no believing, no receiving and no “heart” at all. There is just the nagging reality of hopeless effort, tears and shameful discouragement. And worse yet for many, they construct a new theological platform of resolve… “I will choose to not believe any longer, because it just leaves me hopeless!”

The Spirit of Unbelief:

The inability to obey the instructions of Jesus and trust in the Promises of God, often leads to this frustration. We want to please the Lord and experience all that God has said, but something in us resists faith. We find we “cannot” believe even when we want to. This can be due to a “spirit of unbelief”. Lies, deception, fears or offenses can find their dwelling in the heart and be controlled by a demonic spirit that paralyzes the heart in unbelief. This spirit is real and dangerous, it is pervasive and advancing across the landscape of Christianity and it lives in the midst of the “Church culture”… where all is not fine in paradise!

Authenticity:

I receive many emails and calls about this issue and I find it a bit shocking that the problem is so wide spread and growing. Yet in my opinion there is a root cause that we must uncover and shine the light of truth upon… people are living superficial lifestyles. They rarely stop and contemplate the meaning of their existence. To ask the simple question, “WHY!” is not blasphemy, nor is it going to lead us into deception. Perhaps it would even offer a lot more authenticity to our journey!

Jesus said in Matthew 7:7… “Ask, seek and knock… and the door will be opened!”

Authentic communication with God – opens the door of relational truth. Things that are difficult for us to understand, come into the light of His wisdom and love. God is a “father”, He knows how to take care of His children and He is faithful. He is anticipating our needs to be vocalized and to come streaming into His Presence (Heb. 4:16). The Apostle Peter, who seemed a lot like us; said you and I need to be “casting all our care upon Him, because He cares for us” (1 Pet. 5:7). He cares for us… and He knows all about our issues of faith. This idea that we can avoid our problems and they will just go away… well – that is the greatest deception of all! They do not go away, in fact they produce the fruit of disappointment, which I spoke of earlier. We tend to create and believe a false perception of God’s heart toward our reality.

So – here’s the point…

  • Stop living without meaningful communication with God!

Spend time telling God of the frailty of your faith, the brokenness of your heart and the weakness in your perceptions… ask Him “why?!” and then wait… wait… wait… for the doors to open! They will, my friend they will… they will open wide and the King of Glory will come in. Who is this King of Glory… He is the Lord Strong and Mighty! (Psa. 24:7-10)

The Beholding Principle

“But we all, with unveiled face, beholding as in a mirror the glory of the Lord, are being transformed into the same image from glory to glory, just as by the Spirit of the Lord.” (2 Cor. 3:18)

One of the most important spiritual principles of the Bible is the principle that what we continuously behold, will be what we become. If we behold and study God’s fiery love for us, our hearts will become fiery with love for God. When we behold the emotions of God, we receive truths about how God feels about human beings; about you and me individually, about our destinies, our personalities, our likes and dislikes… we find our place in His heart. We can certainly connect with mysteries that are beyond finding out and behold the majesty of God. But when we see Him as He is, we begin to change.

The Key to Transformation:

The Apostle Paul wrote of this spiritual principle as a key to transformation… as we behold the glory of the Lord we are transformed, “from glory to glory”. This very basic principle is foundational to the Biblical theology of heart transformation. It is what made David a man after God’s own heart (1 Sam. 13:14). Simply stated, whatever we behold or understand about God’s heart toward us, is what we become in our hearts toward God. If we behold a mean stingy God, we will become mean and stingy. But if we behold His glory, as the Apostle Paul wrote, the Holy Spirit will transforms us.

Pursue the Heart of God!

By pressing into God’s emotions through study and a personal pursuit of our relationship with Him, we find our place in His heart. We become men and women captured by His heart. If we behold what David beheld about God, we would live as he lived, and we would carry our hearts before God as he did. The things David, Moses or even Adam beheld in God’s heart are still there, available and awe-inspiring; as they have been throughout history. God invites us to behold the very thing these powerful men experienced. We can behold the reality of God’s emotions every time we look into the face of Jesus, our Savior and Friend… He is the glory of the invisible God (2 Cor. 4:6)(Heb. 1:1-3).

When we begin to understand God’s emotions for us, corresponding emotions are quickened in our hearts. The same emotions we gaze upon within His heart come alive in our own hearts, and we reflect them back to Him. For example, when we behold the passion in God’s heart for us, our own heart starts to feel passion toward Him. In the Bible John tells us that we have passion for Him, because we first understood His passion for us (1 Jn. 4:19). We enjoy God more by searching out and convincing ourselves of God’s enjoyment of us. One of the most amazing revelations of my life came when I began to feel God’s embrace of me… to realize that God was not just loving me, but He liked being with me, because He truly liked “me”!

The Unveiled Face:

Think about it for a moment… how do our hearts become alive? How do we get free from the addictions, strongholds and pain of the past? It was the Apostle Paul who taught believers to seek renewal by receiving knowledge of the image of God (Col. 3:10). It was in the face to face encounters that change took place in Moses, David and Isaiah. Spiritual transformation and the renewing of the mind will only happen through revelation knowledge, which is the knowledge of God’s heart bursting into our own hearts. This beholding principle is the miracle God spoke about when He said He would write a new law upon our hearts (Jer. 31:33)… “I will put my instructions deep within them, and I will write them on their hearts. I will be their God, and they will be My people.”

The Working of Focus

“…let us run with patience the race that is set before us, looking unto Jesus the author and finisher of our faith; who for the joy that was set before Him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is set down at the right hand of the throne of God.” (Heb. 12:1-2)

“But we all, with unveiled face, beholding as in a mirror the glory of the Lord, are being transformed into the same image from glory to glory, just as by the Spirit of the Lord.” (2 Cor. 3:18)

“And the Word became flesh and dwelt among us, and we beheld His glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father, full of grace and truth. John bore witness of Him and cried out, saying, this was He of whom I said, ‘He who comes after me is preferred before me, for He was before me.’ And of His fullness we have all received, and grace for grace.” (Jn. 1:14-16)

One of the most important spiritual principles of the Bible is the principle of focus. It simply speaks to the fact that what we continuously behold in worship, will be what we become. If we behold and study God’s fiery love for us, our hearts will become fiery with love for God. When we behold the emotions of God, we receive truths about how God feels about human beings; about you and me individually, about our destinies, our personalities, our likes and dislikes… we find our place in His heart. We can certainly connect with mysteries that are beyond finding out and behold the majesty of God. But when we focus upon Jesus and see Him as He is, we receive of His fullness with greater clarity… and we begin to change.

The Key to Transformation:

The Apostle Paul wrote of this spiritual principle as a key to transformation… as we behold the glory of the Lord we are transformed, “from glory to glory”. This very basic principle is a  foundation to the Biblical theology of heart transformation. It is what made David a man after God’s own heart (1 Sam. 13:14). Simply stated, whatever we behold or understand about God’s heart toward us, is what we become in our hearts toward God. If we behold a mean stingy God, we will become mean and stingy. But if we behold His glory, as the Apostle Paul wrote, the Holy Spirit will transforms us.

Pursue the Heart of God!

By pressing into God’s emotions through study and a personal pursuit of a relationship with Him, we find our place in His heart. We become men and women captured by His heart. If we behold what David beheld about God, we would live as he lived, and we would carry our hearts before God as he did. The things David, Moses or even Adam beheld in God’s heart are still there, available and awe-inspiring; as they have been throughout history. God invites us to behold the very thing these powerful men experienced. We can behold the reality of God’s emotions every time we look into the face of Jesus, our Savior and Friend… He is the glory of the invisible God (2 Cor. 4:6)(Heb. 1:1-3).

Focus that Experiences God’s Emotions:

When we begin to understand God’s emotions for us, corresponding emotions are quickened in our hearts. This is often referred to in the Bible as “His Countenance” (Ps. 89:14-15) or “His Face” (Num. 6:24-26). The same emotions we gaze upon in His Face are within His heart and they come alive in our own hearts. We reflect them back to Him. For example, when we behold the passion in God’s heart for us, our own heart starts to feel passion toward Him. In the Bible John tells us that we have passion for Him, because we first understood His passion for us (1 Jn. 4:19). We enjoy God more by searching out and convincing ourselves of God’s enjoyment of us.

One of the most amazing revelations of my life came when I began to experience and really feel God’s embrace of me… to realize that God was not just loving me, but He liked being with me, because He truly liked “me”!

The Unveiled Face:

Think about it for a moment… how do our hearts become alive? How do we get free from the addictions, strongholds and pain of the past? It was the Apostle Paul who taught believers to seek renewal by receiving knowledge of the image of God (Col. 3:10). It was in the face to face encounters that change took place in Moses, David and Isaiah. Spiritual transformation and the renewing of the mind will only happen through revelation knowledge, which is the knowledge of God’s heart bursting into our own hearts. This beholding principle is the miracle God spoke about when He said He would write a new law upon our hearts (Jer. 31:33)… “I will put my instructions deep within them, and I will write them on their hearts. I will be their God, and they will be My people.”

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