Archives For love

reckoning

Chilly —  May 2, 2016 — 2 Comments

reck·on·ing   [rek–uh-ning]

the avenging of past mistakes or misdeeds.

reckoningDo you ever wonder what we’re really doing or at least supposed to be doing? Why are our methods, passion, and approach all greeted with such resistance, fear or doubt? Why are people in the community more intrigued by and engaged in transformation than people in the church? Why no one seems to be able to find the correct phrase or word to describe us? Are we nameless?

I’ve been thinking a lot about this…

What makes us any different from previous pioneers, revolutionaries or trailblazers of the faith?  Are our ideas so unique? Are sermons more inspiring? …hardly. Is it our tech toys, websites, blog pages, crazy videos, or loud music? … no, I don’t think so. Maybe it’s our jeans & t-shirt Sunday attire.  Ha, that’s not it either – but it’s definitely a perk! 

So, what makes us different? Why all the books, conferences, articles with words like: engaging, convergent, relevant, next generation, influential, mosaic, story-telling, etc.? You know what, I don’t know either…

Maybe the labels and titles came from the rigid, controlling, established, religious, on-their-way-out, leadership of organized churches & denominations. We tend to fear what we don’t understand, and a label always helps us sum up something we don’t really get… was that offensive – I’m sorry – that’s not my intention. Honest. I’m not picking a fight.

You see, I don’t think we’re really that unique. From the first century church to where we are today, there has been a need for individuals or groups of believers that stand up and bring radical correction to the waywardness or blandness of the church Jesus planted. Throughout history there has been a need to get back to the main thing:  Salvation, discipleship, and community.

When we stray from the foundation, we tend to take ourselves too seriously and the results are tragic: religion replaces relationship, selfishness replaces simplicity, lust for power replaces love for people, control replaces compassion, greed replaces grace, jealousy replaces joyfulness, conflict replaces courage, and frustration replaces freedom. Has this happened in your church (or mine)? Oh man, just the thought of this makes my heart hurts…

It’s easy to fall into this and hard to climb out – but, we must!  [Warning: Rant in 3, 2, 1 …] And, I don’t think the answer is to abandon ship – kick dirt on your church, or walk away because ‘they’ won’t change and only YOU know what authentic Christianity is – and, then use social media and toxic small groups to validate your righteousness & meekness (receiving applauds & pity from every ‘hurt’ leader) – grow up, shut up & move on – gracefully. [end of Rant]

For the rest of us, still in it to win it, let’s begin our adventure back to truth & life TODAY! It’s time for a holy reckoning to happen in and through you. I want a better church for my kids and the generations to follow – better doesn’t mean “new” – actually it’s just getting back to the book of Acts and living it in the 21st century. It may be simplifying: Love God, Love Others & Love Life.

Yeah, labels will come… judgments will be made… shunning could happen. Embrace it. And do what you’re made to do – be who HE made you to be. The message IS sacred, the method is not... keep that straight and LISTEN, LEARN, LIVE, and LOVE!  The lost are all around us – they’re looking for something genuine & trustworthy — someone to help them find the truth. Making disciples is still the Great CommissionYOU ARE NEEDED.  It’s time.

                                one to be reckoned with,
Chilly

Q: What needs a day of ‘reckoning‘ in your life or leadership today?

Don’t Pet the Dragon

Chilly —  February 18, 2016 — Leave a comment

BabyDragonSocial media like owning a pet dragon. At times it’s big & wonderful and then, suddenly, it can burn someone to a crisp! I’ve been toasted like a over-cooked marshmallow and I’m sure I’ve incinerated a few people too. It’s so easy to ‘speak our minds’ boldly and carelessly through a twitter post, facebook update, instagram pic, blog comment or text message. It’s faceless and, far too often, heartless.

It’s so easy to over-react to another person’s words and jump to horrible conclusions! And, before we know it – like flame-thrower – we torch them with judgmental, harsh, third-degree burns! Yeah, they’ll heal but probably not without a scar. They may even get a dragon of their own and return the flames right back at you!

Oh, sure, we can call it a healthy debate or open discussion but it’s usually more about our pride than our purity. There are no winners in faceless rants and one-sided rebukes. In fact, you can be right and still be wrong. The Word of God tells us to speak the truth in love (Ephesians 4:15). And, Jesus is BOTH truth and love, this means that we should present our words as Jesus would – in complete humility, desiring the very best outcome for all who hear.  Continue Reading…

Too Tough NOT to Love!

Chilly —  February 1, 2016 — 2 Comments

“Love means loving the unlovable – or it has no virtue at all.”
– G.K. Chesterton

broken-heartMinistry Paradox:

We want EVERYONE to love us, but KNOW they won’t… 

In fact, some we love the most will HATE us! 


Q: HOW DID JESUS HANDLE THIS?
A: LOVE ANYWAYS!   

HOW ARE YOU DOING WITH THIS??

come on, let’s talk about this in the comments…

Sunscreen & Sunglasses

Chilly —  June 9, 2015 — 4 Comments

a few vacation thoughts…

sunscreen&sunglasses

Sunscreen.

I love going to the beach! LOVE IT! And, yet there’s something about going to the beach that I hate! Yeah, I do it, but I hate it… applying sunscreen! Especially, when there’s 6 other people needing it (in varying degrees of protection: SPF 50, 30, 15, etc). The process takes us 15 minutes or more — and, then, at some point on the beach we must reapply — but by this 2nd time we’re sort of gritty from the sand.

As much as I dislike applying sunscreen, I DO IT. I hate sunburn FAR worse! And, I’m also aware that neglect today could result in much greater problems later: skin cancer. We don’t think about cancer when we’re younger — sunburn is just how we start our tans. Stupid, right?!

It’s easy as Christians to be careless and stupid when it comes to exposing our hearts and minds to the sins and dangers of the world. We’ve all been burned and damaged by the fiery attack from the enemy. We need to apply protection – daily (or more) and liberally.

I know some that choose to live in the shadows with pale faith — fearing worldly damage so much that they avoid lost people all together. That’s not God’s plan. No, we must put on the protection provided and then get out there and make a difference. Find the sunscreen here:

“Put on all of God’s armor so that you will be able to stand firm against all strategies of the devil.” Ephesians 6:11( read: v. 12-18)
– Also read: 2 Corinthians 10:3-5

Don’t become lazy or indifferent by forgetting to reapply. We need the power of the Holy Spirit that comes through DAILY (or more) application of God’s Word and authentic prayer.

Sunglasses.

The other thing we need to enjoy a day on the beach is sunglasses. This year I purchased a pair of sunglasses that are super dark — designed specifically, to protect from sun reflection on the ocean (water).

Sunglasses do 2 primary things: they protect our eyes from damage. Did you know you can sunburn your eyes — OUCH! And, sunglasses, help us focus. You see better when the glare is diverted and your not forced to squint through watery eyes.

The lenses of our ‘sunglasses’ should be God’s Love. When we see others through these lenses — everything becomes more clear and beautiful. What comes through them — like damaging sun, is filtered into vivid clarity. We are protected from insecurity, fear, doubt and hurt. And, then when we look back out through the love of God, we see ONLY good.

Looking through these lenses should also cause us to stop being so selfish, judgmental and rude.

“Don’t be selfish; don’t try to impress others. Be humble, thinking of others as better than yourselves. 4 Don’t look out only for your own interests, but take an interest in others, too. 5 You must have the same attitude that Christ Jesus had.” Philippians 2:3-5

Sometimes Sunscreen and Sunglasses may seem over-the-top or unnecessary, but they protect and preserve you. And, now, each time you use them, perhaps you’ll be reminded of God’s Armor & God’s Love — wear BOTH daily!