Posts Tagged 'christ'

The Mindset

Scripture passages: John 8:2-11; Romans 6:7; Romans 6:11; Romans 6:14; Romans 6:18; and Romans 6:22

You are either serving sin or serving a risen Savior.

There is no in between.

We used to serve sin, now we serve a risen savior!

We cannot live in sin if we have already died to it.

-jordan

The Clarity of Vision

vi·sion noun \ˈvi-zhən\

Definition of VISION

  1. A thought, concept, or object formed by the imagination or a manifestation to the senses of something immaterial.
  2. An unusual discernment or foresight (a person of vision).
  3. The act or power of seeing: sight.
  4. Something seen or a lovely or charming sight.

Be of one mind, united in thought and purpose (vision).” 1 Corinthians 1:10

Vision… a lovely or charming sight.

A vision seeks to keep us as a people united in our thoughts and purpose regardless of the organization, church, business, family, or friendship. Why even have a vision?

  • ONE: Vision Increases Morale and Reduces Frustration

Where there is no vision, the people are unrestrained, But happy is he who keeps the law.” Proverbs 29:18

 Without vision people go crazy. However, with vision people are able to function properly because they know what to do, have higher morale and enjoy organization better when they know what is going on

  • TWO: Vision Attracts Cooperation

Take courage, for it is your duty to tell us how to proceed in setting things straight, and we will cooperate fully.” Ezra 10:4

When the world knows what we are doing, people will want to join in.

Vision is the ability to do few things with excellence.

Our church has a vision, “To make Christ known near and far”. We are seeing frustrations decrease and cooperation come in massive numbers. People are living to “make Christ known near an far” because they are going in one direction. Our vision gives us the ability to say no so that we don’t do a dozen things well but we do a few things with excellence. We unite ourselves under our vision and our people can easily communicate to others who also want to come aboard. We are concentrated and focused, not distracted. That’s because of vision.

I am focusing all my energies on this one thing: Forgetting the past and looking forward to what lies ahead.” Philippians 3:13

 “Let us examine our ways and test them, and let us return to the Lord.” Lamentations 3:40

We must constantly evaluate the purpose of our all of our organizations, churches, business, families, friendships, etc. and trust the leadership casting that vision. If you’re not following a vision, you’re following a rabbit trail. Get vision whatever the cost. Seek out leaders that have clearly defined and measurable purpose (vision). The sooner you get vision, the sooner you get clarity. The sooner you get clarity, the sooner the frustration decreases. The sooner frustration decreases, the sooner cooperation comes.

-jordan

Weakness

My roommate in college got cancer, became weak and eventually died. My biological father also got cancer, became weak and eventually died. It’s inevitable. We all have a shelf life. Our body’s become weak and someday, we die. Death is a result of our weakness… our shortcomings… the inability to to fight off “the death blow”. Something takes over and causes the body to shut down.

When you die you are utterly helpless, without any power or strength.

That something, that weakness, is sin. Sin is shortcoming. Sin is a weakness we all have. Think about it. Weakness is a state of being utterly helpless, without power or strength. That’s death. When you die you are utterly helpless, without any power or strength.

In the book of Genesis (an account on how the world came to be), Adam and Eve choose to sin in the garden. Because of their sin, the consequences to breaking God’s laws were that they would eventually become sick (weak) with the disease of sin and die. They choose it by disobeying God’s security. Not only did they choose it, it was passed down from generation to generation to all their offspring (you and I).

Adam and Eve choose to sin, therefore… we all die (“As in Adam, all die…” 1 Corinthians 15:22).

In our weak condition (our sin) we are helpless because we have no one who will come to our rescue. Maybe in life we have the consequence of sin which is death. But wait… what if there is a cure for death. Don’t get me wrong, you still have to go through dying. However, what if there is a cure once death has been “diagnosed”? What if you have to take the medicine before the diagnosis?

The Apostle Paul says that God (the creator) gave His Son (Jesus) who we have a choose to believe in (trust – the remedy for death) to overcome the weakness which is our sin. In that belief, the antidote for the diagnosis that we know is coming, Jesus gives a gift (counselor and guide) on how to live, how overcoming the weakness that causes death and live in such a way that will prepare us to spend an eternity with Him.

What if you have to take the medicine before the diagnosis?

Loving this God for His gift of life after death gives us power over weakness that will come. We need not fear when the diagnosis comes because we know that we are already trusting in the remedy – Jesus Christ death and resurrection on the cross.

Are you feeling weak? Let me encourage you with what Jesus offers those who will call upon His name…

What Jesus offers to the weak.

  1. Protection and Support: To reject God means we welcome attacks and ultimately welcome death without a remedy for the disease. To accept Jesus means we welcome a support structure, a cure for death, that only God can provide to protect us when death comes. We often give into sin because we are not protected properly. You must go into the bunker to get away from the storm. “Petitioning your requests to the Lord” (Philippians 4:6). If Jesus is the only one who can die for creation, a perfect cure for an imperfect world, then He is the only one who can give protection to the weak in the ability to overcome death.
  2. The Ability to React Properly: Those without protection and support have no time to respond to an attack because the defenses are down. However, the one who trusts in the Lord wears the armor of God to fight everyday, real life, battles.  “You (Jesus) defend the weak and the fatherless; You (Jesus) uphold the cause of the poor and the oppressed.” Psalm 82:3. Word it this way, “You (Jesus) cure the weak and fatherless; You (Jesus) uphold the cure for the poor and oppressed.”
  3. The Ability to be Controlled and Restrained:  A weak, defenseless person cannot respond properly to temptation and thus lives a life out of control. Again they openly welcome death. However, accessing God’s offering of redemption gives us more than a temporary moment of relief but an eternal standing before God. A cure that lasts an eternity.

At the right time Christ died for the ungodly… rarely will anyone die for a righteous person, though perhaps for a good person someone might actually dare to die.” Romans 5:7

Few people might possibly be willing to die to save the lives of the weak… Jesus went beyond that, Jesus died in the place of the weak, for the ungodly, while we were in our sin and weakness and for His enemies. What kind of God does that? Name one other God that does that for His followers?

But God demonstrates His own love toward us, in that while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us.” Romans 5:8

Where you are weak, God makes you strong through the power of Jesus remedy for those diagnosed with death. Will you take the cure in an act of faith and rely on it’ power to daily guide you in the ways you need to go?

-jordan

The Proposal

A friend of mine asked me a month back to let him propose at church. We sat down over dumbbells to plan the scenario. With little interference from his soon to be bride we were ready for action.  Yesterday he popped the question using great form and perfect timing. Not only did she say “yes”, he got a standing ovation.

ovation

The Proposal

Standing ovations are awesome.

The standing “O” makes you feel like you’re doing the right thing. While a human audience’s applause only last a moment, God’s glorious applause for His people lasts an eternity.

As my friend asked his soon to be bride for her hand, the congregation saw an outward action of an internal change. God was on “His feet” because he is in the process of learning what Scripture teaches, living it out realistically, and giving the credit back to God.

Many times we will try and live out what we think we know is best and then go back after a downfall to learn what God’s work teaches on the subject. To make matters worse, if we did consult the scriptures, we will often give ourselves the credit! Double fault! Living out what we think is best and giving credit to ourselves for victories limits God’s favor and silence His applause.

Give Credit and Achieve Impossible

In short, we must learn to give credit where credits due.

As John said, “He must become greater; I must become less.” (John 3:30) That means I learn the truths in the Bible, I live it them out and I give credit to the Lord. In order to truly believe that God will step to help us, His people who believe in Him through faith by the blood of Jesus on the cross, remember that our outward actions are symbolic of what is going on inside, and when we are overcome for Christ, we give God the glory He rightly deserves.

This is how you mature in a relationship with your creator.

Have you ever received a standing ovation? Would you like to get one everyday? Learn God’s Word, live it out and give credit to him for letting you have access to His glorious plan. After all, a heavenly ovation trumps human applause any day of the week!

-jordan

A Better Balance

Abraham and David were great men in the Old Testament. Many New Testament authors reference their leadership frequently. While their guidance was exceptional, both leaders found themselves vindicated not because of the work they exhibited, but more through believing that the impossible could be done when one knew God’s favor was in their possession.

In other words, they walked a road of faith and let God do the heavy lifting through being spiritually disciplined.

A road walked in faith means God does the heavy lifting.

What have you deemed “impossible”? Are you working through your own effort to obtain it? Human thinking places self-belief higher than faith. Self labor and personal belief claims that when one works hard enough (physical labor), great things will happen. While hard work has it’s place, what about the spiritual disciplines that connect to Christ in a supernatural way, allowing us to understand His will? Where is the balance between actions and understanding?

If one were to base a life of obtainment simply off physical labor, then where is their room for prayer, fasting, solitude, rest, etc.?

Much work (labor) has been placed in many relationships and other efforts. However, the greatest growth has come when there is a balance of toil (heavy lifting) and spiritual labor (spiritual disciplines listed above). Abraham and David both dominated for the Lord because they walked with God in the spiritual disciplines while actively doing His will. Think about it like this…

If one were to base a life of obtainment simply off physical labor, then where is their room the spiritual disciplines of prayer, fasting, solitude, rest, etc.?

  • There may be an internal desire to see one come to know the Lord but instead of just preaching constantly have you tried praying for this individual? Fasting over them? Listening to the Lord about how He wants you to communicate God’s truth?
  • You may want the promotion so you’re working endless days and nights trying to obtain it but have you sought out the Lord’s voice in solitude and rest? Have you paused to see if what your doing is really worth it?
  • Your family might be in complete disarray, so you find yourself in constant toil trying to make everyone happy but where are you in your relationship with the Lord? If you are unhealthy, how does that affect others? Are you asking people to do what you are unable to do yourself? Maybe it’s time to slow down instead of accelerate.

Remember, God aligns us to His image when we embrace the beautiful balance of spiritual disciplines and good old fashion hard work. It’s in our nature to work and it’s in our nature to pause. Abraham did it, David did it and even God did it in the creation of the world. We are created in HIS image, maybe it’s time we seek a better balance.

Not by works of righteousness which we have done, but according to His mercy He saved us, through the washing of regeneration and renewing of the Holy Spirit.” Titus 3:5

-jordan

The Rewire

Rewiring is not only essential to getting information and power back to the people; it’s vital to us growing in our spiritual walk with the Lord. Internal rewiring is a concept that consists of going back into our memories to see where negative feelings and emotions have caused pain.  If we can see where our emotions stem there can be great change in the future. While rewiring can be painful, if we are willing to open ourselves to identify internal pain, the freedom obtained will change the course of the future. Imagine being free… Imagine healing and restoration. It’s possible.

Identify the problem can take some time and honesty.

STEP 1: Identification – The first step involves identification of what negative emotion you re actually experiencing.  Is it unhealthy anger, pride, resentment, loneliness, guilt? What exactly is the emotion causing the main issues in your life? If you are experiencing anger, then you need to understand the first and foremost you’re angry. When we’re aware of our emotions and willing to accept that these emotions exist, that is exactly where at a place where God can use this the most.

NOTE: Sometimes we can identify negative emotions and sometimes it takes the voice of another. Identification also means that we are honest with ourselves when these emotions are presented. This means that identification could come from our own knowledge or a result from hearing the same thing from various people in different situations and circumstances.

The rewire can be done alone but it’s better to enlist help.

STEP 2: The Rewire – Once the emotion is acknowledged, we can now retrace or rewire back to where these emotions stemmed. This involves starting at the most recent event or occurrence the emotion occurred and then tracing back days, weeks, months, and even years to how long this emotion has been prevalent.

NOTE: Understand that this is the most effective when these timelines are written down in a tangible format (think journal, piece of paper, etc.). To actually be able to visually see an emotion and how it has taken root in the soul is what ultimately helps us become free.

Find out the trigger that fires the gun and you can stop the bullet.

STEP 3: Trigger – To deal with an emotion and properly run another “clean” wire means that we will look openly and honestly at what exactly triggers these emotions and terminate them immediately.

NOTE: Understand that some emotions can be tied to people, some emotions can be tied to places, and some emotions can be tied to things. When one identifies these people, places, or things that cause these emotional triggers they then can see what needs to be released from their life.

Radical transformation takes radical amputation.

STEP 4:  Terminate – The last of the rewiring is extremely challenging, involving a radical amputation of whatever has caused these specific emotions. In situations that are extreme one may need to move from house, eliminate a relationship (not spouses), or throw out/give away material items such as computers, cars, possessions, etc. We see this a lot with people who smoke cigarettes, as they are encouraged to get rid of their vehicle if they have smoked in that specific automobile. Again, one must understand that this takes either great personal dedication or enlisting the help of someone else.

It’s possible to rewire but understand it takes time, patients, an open mind, and lot of help. You were not born to live with negative emotions from scars in the past. That’s what Christ restores to the broken when they identify, rewire, trigger and terminate what is causing unrest. Allow people to hold you accountable and seek the opportunity to do the hard things to make big change.

You can do it. There is no better time than now.

-jordan

You Wouldn’t Like Me When I’m Angry

The first time I remember my father getting angry happened on a snow-covered day in the heart of Pennsylvania. The family had gathered for some collective holiday conversation around the table one evening after dinner while the kids played in their defined space. Everyone was in good spirits until my adolescent immaturity kicked in. I didn’t get what I desired from my cousins in a childhood game so I went on a rampage. Pushing the envelope in a negative direction there was verbal commands given on how to solve the conflict from our parents as the fight raged on. After the parental guidance was ignored, the next memory consists of the word “shut up” protruding from my mouth in the direction of my father.

The world stopped turning for a moment while everything went into slow motion.  Nobody said a word. The man who looked like my father had become a raging bull charging my path. There was a brief moment that escape seemed possible but before the plan could be unfolded, my little body was in the air over his broad shoulders. Arms and legs were fairing as personal decrees of injustice echoed from my cracking voice. Before another punch or kick could be delivered, my feet hit the snow while the front door closed in my face.

I was outside… alone… in my pajamas… in the snow… with no shoes on.

My head raised in disbelief as I saw my father staring at me in displeased with my hurtful vocabulary. I banged on the door in rage screaming at the top of my lungs for revenge. My father waited for a moment, directed his eyes, and then looked into my soul while booming, “You can come back inside when you calm down.”

There is righteous anger and adolescent sinful anger. It is painfully obvious my anger was sinful while my father’s was righteous. His authority over my life dictated a response to my improper behavior.

This guy is angry…

We all get angry. It’s a part of life and a part of leadership. The question is, are we righteous in our anger or living in our sinful state of rebellion? The one thing that sets leaders apart from rebels is leaders seek righteous anger to find resolutions to improper behavior while children bang on doors begging to get in out of the cold.

You can come inside when you calm down.

What’s the last time you experienced anger in your life? Was it caused from not obtaining something personally or was it from an injustice that had a solution? It’s no fun to wake up in the cold snow realizing we personally placed ourselves that dreadful situation.

Take an evaluation today of the things that make you angry. Righteous anger has solutions if they are evaluated properly while sinful anger demands repentance. If you are focusing on yourself, repent and ask Christ to open the door to come in from the cold. If you are righteously upset, look for a solution and help from other people who are actively seeking solutions to the problem using the proper avenues.

It will set you free.

-jordan

The Seven in Submission

Submissive. That word never really sat right with me. I always thought the Bible used the word to reference how a woman should conduct herself in a marriage relationship. To me the word never had much weight for a man or even a leader.

Wrong.

Titus Three

Submissive has many implications for the life of the Christian, a leader, and men and women in the kingdom of God. While wives are to indeed be submissive to their husband, Paul gave seven qualities in Titus 3 on how Christians can honor the Lord through submission.

  1. Submit to Rulers and Authorities: This is not always easy. Being submissive to authority is to be submissive to God by practicing self-control. It’s easy to sin in avenging an unjust ruler, however, controlling ourselves and living a disciplined life means that we know God is in control. He will gives us His voice when needed to help be a biblical change in the right time and way.
  2. Submit in Obedient: Obedience is tied to being disciplined following the rulers and authorities put in place. While God doesn’t call you to compromise on His Word, He does call you to be obedient to laws in place that are proper for righteous living.
  3. Submit to What is Good: Ephesians 2:10 tells us, “we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared before hand, that we should walk in them.”  When we do good, we ultimately honor Jesus Christ because of our good works are a response to the acceptance of eternal life. Let us walk in those good deeds! These “works” bring honor and glory to the kingdom of God, as we are obedient and submissive.
  4. Submit to Slander No One: In our day we understand that slander is insecurity. There is no honoring the Lord if you have to cut down another. When we speak against our brothers and sisters in Christ were actually defiling the Lord doing what is false and foolish in the eyes of the kingdom of God.
  5. Submit to be Peaceful: Paul sums up his last couple of points with some really good things to consider. He tells us that we should be “peaceable”, meaning we are to be disposed to piece. In other words, Paul says we are to eliminate drama by acting like Christ. A Christian is marked by the freedom he has in Christ through the gospel, which gives a peace like no other.
  6. Submit to be Considerate: Much like peace, being considerate is another mark of the Christian in regards to being submissive to authority. Being considerate means that we are “given to careful consideration”. To be considerate means that we give thought to the feelings of others and strive to understand where somebody has been.  A Considerate Christian wants to see people become more like Jesus, not stay lost in his or her sin.
  7. Submit to Show True Humility: Paul concludes by telling us that we are to show true humility toward all men. The Christian should be an influence for good in the community that’s around him or her. When you are humble, you’re like Christ. When you are like Christ, you’re maximizing impact for the kingdom of God.

Seven traits of a submissive Christian. This is the hope and strength that we need in order to win our community to Jesus Christ and reach the world near and far for the Gospel.

Seriously.

What are you in submission to?

-jordan

Do You Know Where I Stand

The amount of meetings goes up considerably the older we becomes. It doesn’t matter if a meeting is for work, for fun, or over a meal. For whatever reason, people like meetings. We like getting things accomplished with each other.

In small gatherings (two or three individuals) a person will often become open, stating their viewpoints and beliefs on certain issues without reservation.  However, in large gathering, thoughts and viewpoints are rarely communicated from individuals who were vocal in smaller gatherings. Why does the individual that was quiet suddenly become timid, giving little feedback.

While we could blame this lack of communication on personality, a true leader needs to have a point of view.

I’m reminded of reading the gospel accounts of Jesus and the disciples asking questions. The disciples asked Jesus because they wanted to know His thoughts, His reasoning behind His actions, and why He was responding to situations and circumstances a certain way. Jesus, without delay, stated his point of view. He knew he had a responsibility to generate a factual response to lead these men properly. His time was limited so His leadership was communicated.

Jesus leadership.

You’re thinking, “Sure He did… He was God.” Good point. However, if we go further into the biblical text you’ll see that after the ascension Jesus leaves His disciples to act as He acted. The disciples are now charged to respond to people when they asked questions regardless of the group size or people present. They communication was to be on factual points because of the truth they had not only known with their mind but had experienced with their lives.

If you’re passionate at all about helping hurting people, you must start to come to some conclusions about life. There are far to many timid people out there hiding behind the presence of an appearance of humility.  False humility is often panic which becomes silence which can be a hindrance for growth. There may be multiple things you don’t know or even want to know but a knowledge of factual reasoning behind your thoughts is one of the greatest weapons a human you can obtain.

“Speak the truth, even if your voice shakes.”

The next time someone ask what you think, be prepared to answer them. Encourage each other to grow by communicating opinions and seeking to build thoughts and ideas off factual truth.

Always be prepared to give an answer to everyone who asks you to give the reason for the hope that you have. But do this with gentleness and respect.” (1 Peter 3:15).

Executive: A man who can make quick decisions and is sometimes right.” Frank McKinney Hubbard

-jordan

You Are What You Magnify

I was at Boarders, Books-a-Million, or Barnes & Nobel the others day (I can’t remember which one, you know they are all the same and all way overpriced.  I mean, come on, $30 for a DVD?).  Anyway, regardless of the organizational name, I strolled through the magazine section after I got finished with the normal “spiritually” section and the “automotive/motorcycle” coffee table books.  While I was browsing the monthly publication, I notice something that has been on my mind every since.

It seems that the magazine section highlights that our society is on the decay.

I’m sure I just blew you mind with the statement above but please stay with me for a second.  We all know the decline of morals and the uprise of sex and violence is on the rise and clearly evident.  You would have to live in a hole not to witness the uprising.  Just stolling through the news stand, you’ll see what I’m talking about.  However, the “progression” of sex, violence, and anti-morals is not what amazed me.  What amazed me is how we got to this place.

It seems that when you magnify what you think is important, it becomes important to someone else.

An explanation: Years ago someone decided to show a little skin, publish a little violence, or “rebel” a little against society.  Someone else thought what they saw was interesting so they highlighted/printed it in a publication.  Someone else bought the publication and showed it to two friends.  Then those two friends showed their two friends and so on and so on.  Now we are dealing with an outpour of a mistake that I wish we could take back.

My questions?

  • Where have all the good things gone?
  • Are we too late?
  • What will my kids have to advert their eyes to, their ears to, and their mind to?

A smart man once said, “If you don’t stand for something, you’ll fall for everything.”  So are we in the place where we are falling for everything?  Why do we let the mistakes of others continue to effect our society?  Was a passive attitude to just say, “it’ll pass”?  Why do we stand and justify actions that we know are morally wrong?

I don’t understand…

Quite frankly, I grow tired of standing at the news stand having to personally go through a massive amount of justification just to “get through” one “decent” publication.

Perhaps I need to work on my own magnification and what I highlight as important. So I ask myself and reflect while at the news stand, “Jordan, what are you highlighting that is detrimental or hindering to someone else’s personal walk/your walk?  What are you refusing to eliminate?”

I strolled out of the news stand scratching my head…

What do you think?

-jordan


Support Theendisforever

Daily Motivation

Booking for Jordan Muck

Email - JMuck@cgccommunity.com

Call Today - 574.546.4609

Add theendisforever.com…

My Church Family


Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 755 other followers