I’m shifting gears. I just returned from a week at the Carmelite Monastery in our city. I spent the week there responding to an invitation to solitude, silence, and prayer. That invitation came by way of a deep inner desire to be alone with God and a divine discontent in my soul that had been growing more intense over the previous several weeks. I was actually thinking about discontinuing my blog and getting off the internet altogether. But I’ve changed my mind. I simply need to shift gears.
As I gave myself to quiet and prayer, reflecting on the goodness and love of God, something happened. I want to write about what happened. What my Father showed me. Things he has been, and is, doing to reveal his love.
We get enough bad news. We hear too much cynicism and skepticism. So I’m making a schism with “cisms.” He’s drawing me to deeper wells. I want to write about the love that surpasses knowledge. I want to write about the journey our hearts are called to embark on. I want to write from the heart about how to go farther up and deeper in . . . to the immeasurable love of God.
I’m hoping that I won’t lose those of you who are here because of my perspective on Islam and things I’ve written in the past. Hopefully, you will find something else here for your enrichment. Something for your soul. Something that calls to the deep places of your heart. In any case, I’m not sure yet exactly how we’ll arrive, but I invite you to hang in here, as we continue on a wonderful Adventure with our Father. Because, I do know the ultimate destination.
If it’s true that “knowledge puffs up, but love builds up,” then I’m inviting a handful of readers to stick with me and see what God will be pleased to do as we dialog together about the journey we’re on.
I’m not a great writer. Nor is my content going to be the buzz online. But I do have a deep abiding relationship with Abba. And my wife and daughter tell me that I’ve shown the heart of God for them. So why not share with you some of what I’m experiencing as I plumb that deep love of God. That love that is greater than any ocean. That love that has as its goal your heart too.
Thanks for being here. Thanks for reading. I hope you’ll stay for a while longer to see if there’s anything here that your soul will be able to feed on. Perhaps we’ll mutually encourage one another’s faith.
I’m still going to try to post 2-3 times a week.
If you have a Kindle, you can subscribe to my blog for .99 a month (help keep me in gasoline) or just subscribe, by signing-up at the top right for email notices when a new post comes out.
I hope you’ll take the time to comment on this and future posts. I’ll always moderate to ensure that comments are edifying. Let’s start a discussion that can enrich us all.
When we place our FULL trust (I say “full” because many trust partially when things are going well or according to plans) in the Lord, he enables us to wait patiently. We cease our plan, our actions, our agendas, our timetables. Our faith, his gift to us, holds us in patient trust and there we wait until he blesses.
This is not an easy place for doers to find themselves. It is hard even for Marys. How much more glory God gets when a Martha is able to so give up serving, accomplishing and busyness, to “wait patiently?”
The secret is found in this little phrase in v. 6: “Sacrifice and offering (in that context–labor intensive activity) you did not desire . . . “but my ears you have pierced.” This speaks, in that ancient culture, of total surrender and ownership. When we go to God’s doorpost and say to Him “Father I want to give myself totally to be yours . . . to serve You ALONE, we can wait patiently for His assignments and cease from ours.
Father help me to always wait patiently for You. I make you my trust. My ear you have pierced. I am totally your son–ready to bless your heart. Let me bring you great glory at this autumn season of my life. Heart surrender is the worship I give. I’m not ashamed to trust in you no matter how foolish that looks to others. Thank you in advance for receiving this act of worship.
©2011, David C Alves
- Waiting Is The Hardest Part… (scottcouey.wordpress.com)
- How to Wait Well (philslocum.net)
- “A Land That I Will Show You” (captivatedbychrist.org)
- God Acts On Our Behalf (video from Dr. Charles Stanley’s In Touch Ministries)
- How Can I Wait Patiently On the Lord? (video from Dr. Charles Stanley’s In Touch Ministries)
If you cannot express yourself on any subject, struggle until you can. If you do not, someone will be the poorer all the days of his life.
Try to re-state to yourself what you implicitly feel to be God’s truth, and you give God a chance to pass it on to someone else through you.
Recently, I realized that in all the posts I’ve written and shared, I’ve never laid out clearly the “Beautiful News” of God’s Son as I understand it. If someone tried to invent a great movement or religion they could NEVER have come up with what God did.
The first son of God, Adam, abdicated his sonship for his own human desires. And just as God warned, he died spiritually in the day that his “eyes were opened” to good and evil (ethics–before that there was life with Father, evil had no home with the first humans). We all inherited Adam’s humanness including a dead spirit. SO . . . how did God bridge the gap? Someone put it this way:
“The Son of God became the Son of Man, so that the sons of men could become the sons of God.”
To meditate on this for even a few minutes is to lift your mind (and heart, if you are sensitive) into a truth that–for centuries before the coming of Chirst, the Messiah–could never have been foreseen apart from divine intervention. Because of His great love for us (even before we were born), God reconciles us ALL to Himself. He has a masterpiece destiny awaiting us that through the Son and us, brings in the Royal reign of Kingdom of God upon the earth. That He would give us His Son to take upon Himself OUR shattered, darkened humanness is unfathomable . . . but TRUE! And when he births that new spirit in us (theological term “regenerates” us), and gives us the inner will and means to walk by His Holy Spirit, we become “sons of God.” We become royalty. Personally I believe this is what is behind the human facination regarding the royal wedding (see this theme developed in Truth Behind the Royal Wedding).
The BAD NEWS precedes the Beautiful News and can be bullet-pointed as following:
- Human beings gave up their immortality and died spiritually through listening to their own desires. We are their descendants.
- Our self-directed, narcissitic lives have separated us from God. Now an impassable divide lays before us.
- We are forever separated from a loving Creator and are mortal (immortality is humanly unreachable; only those in Christ have immortality).
- This results in us pursuing emptiness. We always want and never have enough . . . of anything! (this is called lust; it’s at the core of our nature).
- We lust for food, sex, money, power, and esteem. All these are attempts to fill the inner void that was meant to house a living spirit.
- We grow full of pride over what we have and have done.
- We live this life until every one of us–rich or poor, high or low, religious or atheist–must face the end: DEATH. NO ONE escapes! All die and take nothing from this life, no thoughts, no memory, no life . . . NOTHING!
- We lay in death in the presence of God and we have no discernible being. Until . . .
The “Beautiful News” can be bullet-pointed as following:
- We have been given the opportunity of an eternity–immortality restored!
- Messiah, Jesus, came and gave himself to bridge the divide and take into Himself all that separated us from God (He became SIN for us).
- He gave Himself to death, so that we could enter LIFE! . . . IF we would embrace, as precious, the Gift of the Father’s love for us. We do this by renouncing our self-directed lives–our me-centered lust and pride–by accepting His Son’s sacrificial love.This change of heart and mind, will turn us from our self-directed lives and give ourselves to the Love that is enthroned over the Universe–the Living God.
- He, in turn, by His great power, raises our dead spirits to life (now, in this life). And we become the “sons of God.” (we NEVER become or were angels. Angels are a different order of being. They exist to serve God and us, as God directs.)
- At the end of our lives, we die; but . . . the sons of God await the Resurrection of Jesus. Then we receive our new bodies–bodies made for interdimentional life in hyper-time here in the New Earth and New Heavens. The creation awaits this revelation of the sons of God.
- We are seated with and reign with Messiah, Jesus both now (where we are learning the interdimentional aspects of our sonship-reign) and in the New Earth–where we will judge angels.
Those who believe that Jesus came lived, died, was raised again to life opening the way for us into the Kingdom, are given the right to become the “sons of God.” We become sons by the love, grace, and power of God. It is not something that we can evolve into or do for ourselves through religious rituals or behaviors (see Why I Despise “Religion“). That way has been blocked so that no one can boast before God that they were “good enough” or “religious enough” to save themselves.
The rescue was ALL–from beginning to end–of Him. He worked salvation for all of us who would respond to and value His love when we saw it displayed in the life, death, and resurrection of the Father’s Unique Son.
THE BEST PART
(This is the “So What?” part in the title of my book–We’re the ‘sons of God’ . . . So What?) HERE IT IS:
YOU, yes YOU are invited to receive the gift of immortality and new life in Christ. That’s why our healing community of brothers and sisters in Christ is named, New Life Fellowship. You need only seek and ask. All who call upon the name of the Lord, Jesus will be saved.
The SAD part–Jesus said that few do. People want to work their own salvation . . . or better yet . . . deny they even need it. They will suffer the loss of everything in the end and ultimately will pass into the Lake of Fire and be destroyed (NOTE: The Father of Jesus and his family of sons and daughters never created the Lake of Fire for people. He created it for the demonic and the Accuser. Rather ME-centered, pleasure-centered people choose that destiny rather than submit themselves to the Father of the Kingdom of Love.) Whether the Lake of Fire is a metaphor or literal location is not the point here, entrance there will be no less terrifying to those who have chosen to reject Christ, the Father and His Kingdom.
The “Beautiful News” is that YOU were destined by God for sonship–to share in His Kingdom. Will you respond to His love for you? Will you accept the offer he makes of peace between you and Him? I agree with His Spirit when I say to you, “Come.” Return to the Father of your soul and live. By His goodness, take up your masterpiece destiny.
©2011, David C Alves
Ideal mothers reflect the nature and character of God to their circle of love. They embody and reflect His ability to create life, His intimate care, sacrificial love, generosity of spirit, and enduring faithfulness.
But there are all kinds of mothers. Some good, some not so good. Some nurturing, some neglectful. Some sacrificial, some self-centered. Some mature, some immature. Some wise, others unwise.
The godly mother, one who reflects God, will reflect certain traits. The godly mother:
- Always loves. She lays down her life for those in her love circle. She knows their love-languages and seeks to speak theirs, not hers. She cares for and nurtures her household. This love is not based upon emotion. The love she has for her children is the deep agape-love that God has for us. That love knows no barriers to sacrifice for the beloved. If you have a bible, read the First Letter to the Corinthians, chapter 13. It’s known as the love chapter. In the verses that describe love, one can substitute various proper nouns for “Love” as an exercise that enhances our understanding and insight into love. For instance, where it says “Love is kind” or “Love keeps no record of wrongs” As an exercise, we do well to substitute “God” (for we know that God is Love). So that the verse would read “God” is kind. “God” keeps no record of wrongs, etc. A godly mother is also His child, so we could as easily substitute her name for “love.” And read the verse. Mothers don’t shine perfectly, but we see a definite reflection. Even the best ungodly mothers manifest His love for their children; they simply don’t acknowledge the source.
- Spends quiet, unhurried time with Father like the recently breast-fed child laying on her mother’s chest (Ps. 131). She gets that picture. That’s the source of her wisdom. Unhurried, quiet time with her Father. She knows that she needs His nourishment, His Spirit in order to calm and settle the anxieties of mothering. She is wise enough to know that He is not only her source, but the source for her family. And her life subsists of those islands of sitting still and KNOWING that God is there for her and hers.
- Knows that wisdom (the knowledge to choose the right path among two or more) is not something she possesses.Wisdom is in a person–Jesus, who indwells those who submit to God. She has discovered that His ways are infinitely better than hers. The ungodly woman believes that she is the source of her own wisdom. What a bankrupt place that must be. Only the strongest delusion could make a man or woman conceited enough to think that they have the wisdom to navigate life successfully. The godly woman is wise because she is not the fountain of wisdom and knows it. But she knows the One who is wise. And He speaks to her both in His written, revealed will (the Bible) and in his quiet inner voice.
- Walks by faith (Heb. 12.1, 35; Matt. 15.28) She KNOWS what God is saying about those in her love circle. And she trusts God for the outcome. Not only does she walk by faith, her walk is an example to her children and grandchildren. Faith can be inherited (2 Ti. 1.5). She imparts that faith to her family.
- Knows when to “Let go” She trusts God fully for her own. She lets go of the reins at the right time. Especially with her boys. Men must learn to stand, to be responsible without fear in the world. Fathers get this; moms don’t always. Moms nurture and protect. Relating in a less directive manner is often difficult for them. Yet once the boys reach adolescence, if she continues to parent them in a directive manner, she will lose them (at least through their early manhood). Unless . . . she is wise. If she allows them to become men and gives counsel instead of directive mothering, her boys will not resent what they perceive as “nagging” and a lack of respect. Strings MUST be cut. How she does this will determine their future relationship.
- Trains others. The godly, wise mother passes what she knows on to other women. In Titus, the second chapter, the older women are directed to train up the younger women in the way they love their husbands and conduct their households. That relieved many women of undue stress. They had successful mentors–spiritual women whom they could respect. They could see before their eyes the fruit of a godly woman’s life.
These are at least a few values and actions that, in my opinion, will be found in a wise, godly mother.
QUESTION: What are some you might add? I’m sure I’ve missed some.
©2011, David C Alves
This past Sunday, our friend and brother, Wayne Jacobsen, author of several outside-the-box books, including He Loves Me–spoke with us at New Life Fellowship in Concord, NH. His topic was “Living in the Father’s Affection” or Living Loved.
Rather than tell you what stood out about his message, I thought I’d just share that audio message with you here.
Hope you enjoy it! But more so . . . Hope it transforms your thinking about God–who He REALLY is and how much he loves YOU!