Repentance to Redemption (Part I: Trying to Change)

Repentance to Redemption (Part I: Trying to Change)

What if you just can’t change?

If the need to change wasn’t an issue, then Christianity would be a cinch. Free ticket to heaven? Great! Jesus loves me? Amen! He has a hope and future for me? That’s what I want too!
But, I shouldn’t be conformed to the patterns of this world?
I need to repent?
Put off my old self?
That’s much more difficult to embrace.

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The Pleasures of Prayer (Part 3: Battling the Soul)

The Pleasures of Prayer (Part 3: Battling the Soul)
You walk into Sunday Service, but feel drowned in discouragement.
You reluctantly open up your Bible, only to be burdened to appease God’s supposed disapproval of you.
Thinking about God stresses you out.
Worship is frustrating.
You feel blocked. Afraid. Pressured. Apathetic.
You’re stuck.
All of these are common soul issues that keep us from diving into the pleasures of prayer. And, by soul, we are referring to our mind, will, and emotions (1 Thessalonians 5:23).
If you are resonating with any of the above, I pray you find encouragement in knowing that this merely a stepping stone in your journey with Jesus. As long as you breathe, God is not done with your life!
In the meantime, the following are some practical steps to navigating through the deep waters of your soul.

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The Pleasures of Prayer (Part 2: Battling the Flesh)

The Pleasures of Prayer (Part 2: Battling the Flesh)
Prayer is like swimming in a river; the current of the Spirit’s Presence is powerful and refreshing.
However, many Christians do not experience freedom from the discipline of prayer. For some, it is not as much a privilege but a burden. There are, indeed, some challenging layers to overcome in order to break through into praying in the Spirit. I hope to unpack those layers in the following posts in this series.
The first layer is with the flesh.
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The Pleasures of Prayer (Intro: The Joyful Revelation of Prayer)

The Pleasures of Prayer (Intro: The Joyful Revelation of Prayer)
Years ago, when I had half the number of children I do now, I sent the kids into their rooms for nap time. I felt led to enter into a time of intercessory prayer, but quite frankly, I did not feel like it. I was tired, and it was an uncomfortably hot summer day. However, in obedience, I entered my room and began to ask the Lord what to intercede for.
Initially, there was just silence, and I was tempted to just turn on the television.
But, I asked again, “Lord, what should I be praying for?”
And the Lord responded, “What do you want?”
Even though I knew I heard Him correctly, I was dumbfounded. What do I want? Up until this day, I thought prayer was just about me asking for whatever the Lord wanted to give! Or, it was just me rambling on about what I needed, hoping one or two would “make it” to God’s throne room. I didn’t think that what I wanted mattered. Little did I know, the Lord was teaching me a life-changing lesson that afternoon.
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Believing in Revival (Part 3: Stewarding the Gifts of God)

Believing in Revival (Part 3: Stewarding the Gifts of God)
When revival comes, a lot of exciting things happen. Bodies are healed. Hearts are set free. The experiences become supernatural. Heaven is visible on earth. It is a beautiful thing.
However, have you ever had a powerful spiritual experience that just dissipated into a distant memory? It may have been during your church’s Sunday service or the last night of a retreat. Yet, after the moment passed, the feelings left along with it, and you end up wondering whether that moment was genuine.  
Revival is real, and it is a gift. Like all gifts, it must be stewarded well. Stewarding revival requires an attention to biblical basics, which are oftentimes overlooked because they are obvious and seemingly secondary. However, the basics are a believer’s primary responsibility and will either make or break one’s revival experience.
These basics are what will determine whether your revival moment becomes a revival lifestyle. This is relevant to all individual believers of Christ as well as corporate Christian bodies.

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Believing in Revival (Part 2: When there is no spiritual hunger)

Believing in Revival (Part 2: When there is no spiritual hunger)
Oh, to long for the great works of the Holy Spirit! Although many would not like to admit it, this is easier said than done. It requires a spiritual hunger that exceeds an earthly hunger. It requires a kingdom ambition, not just career ambition.  
It is very common for Christians to believe in Christ to the point of being blessed. However, for some believers, the fight for faith ends there.
Most want salvation, but not as many desire for the salvation of others.  Any believer can cry out for one’s own healing, but you often don’t find someone passionate to see the healing anointing upon the entire church. Most would welcome the strength of the Holy Spirit while they are at work, but not too many have the unction to pray for God’s great power to manifest in signs, miracles, and wonders in the workplace.  

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Believing in Revival (Part 1: Hope for Change)

Believing in Revival (Part 1: Hope for Change)
It begins with hope.
In my time in ministry, I have found that many believe that revival consequently means overcoming a struggle for piety and discipline. As in, it’s revival when you start doing your quiet times every day after finally being convinced that He loves you. Mind you, all these things are great things. However, at most, these scenarios minimize Christianity to just you overcoming yourself to survive another day.
The cross has a greater inheritance for us than just becoming “better people.”

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Believing in Revival (Introduction)

Believing in Revival (Introduction)
Although I was not born a Christian, I spent the majority of my childhood growing up in a church setting. I’ve been to my share of retreats, praise nights, prayer gatherings, and so on and so forth.
The word I have heard quite often in these gatherings was “revival.” Every pastor I met seemed to want it. Every church retreat I attended seemed to aim for it. I have heard so many Christian leaders say that we needed it, but no one really explaining what it looked like.

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Embracing Humility (Finale: Applying Humility)

Embracing Humility (Finale: Applying Humility)
Most people, especially Christians, know that humility is important. Humility is good. Pride is bad. This much is usually very clear.
However, the motivation to be humble does not necessarily propel proper execution. Basically, what does a humble Christian look like these days?  

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Embracing Humility (Part 3: Refusing Blindness)

Embracing Humility (Part 3: Refusing Blindness)
Once, I actually almost lost my life to a blind spot. I was in the passenger seat of a car, and the driver forgot to check behind her before crossing a lane. Long story short, the car was destroyed, and we were almost destroyed along with it.
Pride is a blind spot to the soul.
It doesn’t just hurt you. Instead, it destroys you.
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