Thursday, November 19, 2009

And you will know we are Christians by our Anger…

No, that’s not how the phrase goes does it?  By our bitterness, our resentment, our hatred, our selfishness, our pride, our envy…still no.  What was it then, oh yes, by our love!

“Be on your guard; stand firm in faith; be men of courage; be strong. Do everything in love.” 1 Corinthians 16:13-14

“Anyone who claims to be in the light but hates his brother is still in the darkness.”
1 John 2:9

“A new command I give you; Love one another. As I have loved you, so you must love one another.  By this all men will know that you are my disciples, if you love one another.” John 13:34-35

“…Love your enemies, do good to those who hate you, bless those who curse you, pray for those who mistreat you.” Luke 6:27-28

If we love our Christian brothers and sisters, it proves that we have passed from death to life. But a person who has no love is still dead. Anyone who hates another brother or sister is really a murderer at heart. And you know that murderers don’t have eternal life within them. If someone says, “I love God,” but hates a Christian brother or sister, that person is a liar; for if we don’t love people we can see, how can we love God, whom we have not seen?

We know what real love is because Jesus gave up his life for us. So we also ought to give up our lives for our brothers and sisters. If someone has enough money to live well and sees a brother or sister in need but shows no compassion—how can God’s love be in that person?   Let’s not merely say that we love each other; let us show the truth by our actions. Our actions will show that we belong to the truth, so we will be confident when we stand before God.

This is his commandment: We must believe in the name of his Son, Jesus Christ, and love one another, just as he commanded us. Those who obey God’s commandments remain in fellowship with him, and he with them. And we know he lives in us because the Spirit he gave us lives in us.

But what happens when we live God's way? He brings gifts into our lives, much the same way that fruit appears in an orchard—things like affection for others, exuberance about life, serenity. We develop a willingness to stick with things, a sense of compassion in the heart, and a conviction that a basic holiness permeates things and people. We find ourselves involved in loyal commitments, not needing to force our way in life, able to marshal and direct our energies wisely.

Legalism is helpless in bringing this about; it only gets in the way. Among those who belong to Christ, everything connected with getting our own way and mindlessly responding to what everyone else calls necessities is killed off for good—crucified.

Since this is the kind of life we have chosen, the life of the Spirit, let us make sure that we do not just hold it as an idea in our heads or a sentiment in our hearts, but work out its implications in every detail of our lives. That means we will not compare ourselves with each other as if one of us were better and another worse. We have far more interesting things to do with our lives. Each of us is an original.

What is written above is challenging, it begs of us to look internally and examine our lives.  Today’s entry; every word is from scripture except the first paragraph and what I am writing to you now.  We are called to be different than the rest of this world…we are called to love.  If not, do we have the love of the Father in us?  What did the scripture have to say?

For some of us it means recognizing that we have yet to truly be transformed in the Spirit and live according to His purpose for ourselves and not by our own path. We have yet to die of self.  Maybe today will be the first day that you say, "I'm not who I was."

The body of today’s entry is from:
1 John 3:14-24 NLT
1 John 4:20 NLT
Galatians 5:22-26 The Message

Today's song by Matthew West - I'm Not Who I Was

I wish you could see me now
I wish I could show you how
I'm not who I was
I used to be mad at you
A little on the hurt side too
But I'm not who I was

I found my way around
To forgiving you
Some time ago
But I never got to tell you so

I found us in a photograph
I saw me and I had to laugh
You know, I'm not who I was
You were there, you were right above me
And I wonder if you ever loved me
Just for who I was

When the pain came back again
Like a bitter friend
It was all that I could do
To keep myself from blaming you

I reckon it's a funny thing
I figured out I can sing
Now I'm not who I was
I write about love and such
Maybe 'cause I want it so much
I'm not who I was

I was thinking maybe I
I should let you know
I am not the same
But I never did forget your name

Well the thing I find most amazing
In amazing grace
Is the chance to give it out
Maybe that's what love is all about

I wish you could see me now
I wish I could show you how
I'm not who I was

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Want to join a miracle in the making?

Dear Servant,
God put it on our hearts to start a Christian orphanage/foster home for kids (that we affectionately call The Lodge) on the west side of Indianapolis. We have grant writers, social workers, volunteers, construction companies, attorneys, etc. starting to line up behind this amazing thing that God is doing!
We met with the master builder on a Wednesday and asked him what it would take for him to understand that God is moving in miraculous ways, not just luck or coincidences, but miracles. We specifically asked him, “Mike, what do you need to see so that you will surrender to God on this project and do it His way and drop all of our silly logic?” He said he would need to see property in hand and $250,000 in the bank. That was Wednesday, and by that Saturday we were offered 22 acres of land that has already been zoned for an orphanage and counseling center in which to build on. You tell us…is God in this?
Now it is time to raise the $250k. Will you help us somehow? Will you be a part of the miracle that God wants to deliver? Go to and search for the video under “Dynamis Mission”, it is the first hit. Take a look. Then go to the web site at Let us know where God is leading you. Spread the word far and wide! He still moves mountains!
In Christ,

Dynamis Ministries
The Power of the Spirit in Motion

Today's Song Kutless- That's what Faith can do

Everybody falls sometimes
Gotta find the strength to rise
From the ashes and make a new beginning
Anyone can feel the ache
You think it’s more than you can take
But you are stronger, stronger than you know
Don’t you give up now
The sun will soon be shining
You gotta face the clouds
To find the silver lining

I’ve seen dreams that move the mountains
Hope that doesn’t ever end
Even when the sky is falling
And I’ve seen miracles just happen
Silent prayers get answered
Broken hearts become brand new
That’s what faith can do

It doesn’t matter what you’ve heard
Impossible is not a word
It’s just a reason for someone not to try
Everybody’s scared to death
When they decide to take that step
Out on the water
It’ll be alright
Life is so much more
Than what your eyes are seeing
You will find your way
If you keep believing

I’ve seen dreams that move the mountains
Hope that doesn’t ever end
Even when the sky is falling
And I’ve seen miracles just happen
Silent prayers get answered
Broken hearts become brand new
That’s what faith can do

Overcome the odds
You don't have a chance
(That’s what faith can do)
When the world says you can’t
It’ll tell you that you can!

Thursday, November 5, 2009

The hardest lesson I ever had to learn

What do you value most? Your job, your car, your house. Maybe your values go much deeper, you would say your family, your kids, your health, your spouse. Those things are good and it would only seem right to place a high value on them, but we would be wrong in doing so. For years I placed great value in my wife and my relationship with her. I pretty much worshiped her, held her up on a peddle stool in my eyes. I remember I used to tell her that if she snapped at me in the morning I was crushed and useless for the rest of the day. It was true and I thought it was a good thing that I placed so much importance on her. I found my identity in her, my self worth (value), because I valued her so much. Do you know what I’m talking about? Of course you do.

What if you lost what you valued most? Would it destroy you, crush you? It almost did for me, until I learned the hardest truth I ever had to face. The values that I had were all misplaced. My marriage, it would be gone one day, in death at the very least. My kids, on loan from God entrusted into my care. My house, my car, my money, my job, my time…it is all His from the beginning. I simply had to admit that truth to myself. It isn’t mine, it is all His.

My identity was misplaced as well because of my flawed value system. Bluntly honest, I found my worth in her, in my job, in being a father, a friend etc. Because of this I was in bondage to this identity and value system. When things fell apart Satan exploited it to cause me great pain and agony. To keep me in fear and panic, to spend a lot of time asking “what if” questions regarding the past, present and future. When something threatened my “values” my world came crashing down and I couldn’t even function sometimes, the pain and anxiety was paralyzing. Can you relate?

So what changed? Beginning to understand that it all truly belongs to the Lord and that my value, self worth and identity should come from Him alone. Again, in all honesty, that was a bitter pill to swallow at first, but it soon became the most liberating fact of my life outside of salvation. As I rebuilt my identity squarely on my life in Christ, creating a value system solidly on valuing the things of God’s heart, on pleasing Him and living in His will for my life; Satan suddenly lost all power over me. His strongholds in me were torn down and the chains that weighed me down were broken and stripped away!

Now I have a new identity in Christ, He is my value and I have much value in Him. So as the storms rage around me I do not fear, I do not fret. There is no pain or anxiety and there is no sorrow; only joy and peace. I worship Him alone, to Him all my praise and adoration is given.

My wife may never come home, but I will rejoice in the Lord still. More calamities may come my way, but they will not injure me or cause me to stumble. “There is no fear in (His) love. But perfect love drives out fear...” 1 John 4:18 Please don’t misunderstand me. I love my wife dearly, more than she will ever understand. I would love nothing more than for her to come home, but it does not define me, the marriage is not what I live for anymore, it is not my purpose.

Satan can no longer exploit those values for pain because the value is not there to be exploited. Also, I’m not saying they are of no value, but in comparison to His glory, they are mere shrinking shadows of what they were previously.

This also allows us to live out 1 Corinthians 13:4-8 with greater ease and clarity. If our value was perfectly in Him alone then it would be impossible to threaten our values, which means that jealousy, envy, pride, selfishness, etc. could not exist. Take a look for yourself: “Love is patient and kind. Love is not jealous or boastful or proud or rude. Love does not demand its own way. Love is not irritable, and it keeps no record of when it has been wronged. It is never glad about injustice but rejoices whenever the truth wins out. Love never gives up, never loses faith, is always hopeful, and endures through every circumstance. Love never fails.” For example, if we value His love instead of the love from others, what is there to be demanding of?

Like I said, the hardest lesson I ever had to learn, but also the most liberating and instantaneous in its effects on me. This is the freedom we have in Jesus Christ. I fully believe this is the beginning of understanding that has the potential to free you from all kinds of grief and medication.  It will also make for better relationships, better marriages and release us to live the way we were designed to live.

So what is it that you value? Where is your identity found? Is any of it misplaced, holding you back from an abundant life?

Here’s to freedom!

Today’s song

This may throw some of you completely off, but I think it is interesting how secular music has some great worship lyrics sometimes. They just miss out on who the object of our praise, worship, adoration and affection should go to. Here is a perfect example.

Halo by Beyonce

Remember those walls I built
Well, baby they're tumbling down
And they didn't even put up a fight
They didn't even make up a sound

I found a way to let you in
But I never really had a doubt
Standing in the light of your halo
I got my angel now

It's like I've been awakened
Every rule I had you breakin'
It's the risk that I'm takin'
I ain't never gonna shut you out

Everywhere I'm looking now
I'm surrounded by your embrace
Baby I can see your halo
You know you're my saving grace

You're everything I need and more
It's written all over your face
Baby I can feel your halo
Pray it won't fade away

I can feel your halo halo halo
I can see your halo halo halo
I can feel your halo halo halo
I can see your halo halo halo

Hit me like a ray of sun
Burning through my darkest night
You're the only one that I want
Think I'm addicted to your light

I swore I'd never fall again
But this don't even feel like falling
Gravity can't forget
To pull me back to the ground again

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Surrender and exposing the lies

So how is life? Are you tired of the rut? Is it just a series of events?  Christian or not, do you ever wander if this is as good as it gets? If you are feeling this way you should know there is another path, an infinitely more amazing path.  I know that I give you glimpses into my life through this blog.  If I wrote everything down, every encounter, every would not believe me and probably think I was out of my mind!  For that matter, I have no desire to boast except to say how AWESOME our God really is.

I can honestly tell you that my daily life is FULL of ADVENTURE, packed with PURPOSE and MEANING and any movie script or novel pales in comparison at this point. Not because of what I’ve done, but because of who He is and what He accomplishes through people like you and me.  Do you crave adventure?  Do you desire purpose, meaning and deep relationship? Of coarse you do, we were designed by God for it!

Starting in December, I am going to teach a Sunday school class at Kingsway on everything that I have come to understand, the things that have brought me to this place.  I want to see EVERYONE out of bondage and living a daily miracle filled life! Yes, it does exist!!!  If you are hurting, emotionally scarred, trapped, depressed, full of anxiety, feeling empty, addicted, afflicted, stuck in coping through life, haven’t figured it all out, stressed, tired, lonely, broken, messed up, want more of life...come.  If you think you have it all figured out (I haven’t), don’t bother, He can’t help you right now.

You have to be in the place where you are willing to SURRENDER. Say I quit, I give up.  I can’t do it my way anymore, my way stinks.  I give it ALL to you Lord!  You have to really want it.  I admit that I am a failure on my own accord.  I screw it up every time I do it MY WAY.  Now that I’ve given up and surrendered, let’s do it your way.  I give you my schedule, my preferences, my time, my talent, my money, my job, my spouse, my kids, my problems, my pains, my life.  It belongs to you.  It was really yours to begin with, but I’m just now admitting that. I am finally broken of my selfishness, now please Lord, build me into what you wanted me to be.

The question now is, how do I go forward?  I don’t even know what that looks like.  I’ve been doing it my way for so long.  Me too.  We are going to build on surrender in class.  He is going to show you the path, in practical application, of how to live life in full surrender and bring you to a place of joy, peace, adventure and purpose like you never thought possible.

Why didn’t you think it was possible?  Because there is a liar among us.  He is the father of lies and he steals away God’s truth in our hearts and replaces it will lies and half truths.  Satan has been busy lying to you and me, keeping you away from the life God desires and you desire.  He tells you, promises you that you can fill up that pain, that emptiness through stuff, movies, relationships, whatever.  The truth is it just makes it worse.  He is a liar!  Even now you have probably thought that what you are reading can’t be had for you, or “Brian’s really stretching it this time, I don’t deserve what Brian is talking about, my life is ok the way it is, I have time to fix my life later.” I don’t know what he said to you, but he is LYING TO YOU. STOP LISTENING and call him what he is, a liar!

He feeds me lies everyday.  Who are you Brian, to be helping people?  Who are you to write a blog on such subjects?  Who are you to teach Sunday school?  People will turn on you for writing such pointed stuff.  I will tell you who I am, nothing, but are missing the point with your lies.  HE, JESUS, my savior is EVERYTHING.  Through HIM alone I can accomplish such things, be empowered to speak the truth, be bold for Him and expose your lies Satan.  You have lost this battle!  YOU LOOSE now go away, flee from me!

Tell Satan you are aware now of his lies he tells you.  You know what they are.  You know what he says to you.  You are not good enough.  Lie! You have to fix your own life, before getting right with God. Lie!  You’ve done too much wrong, too much damage and there is no going back. Lie! Lie! Lie!  You are not someone who can make a difference. Lie!  Your problems are too big to be dealt with.  Lie!  Everything is hopeless. LIE!!!  You don’t have time for church or Sunday school. Lie!  That you are going to "find happiness" by some other means than God Himself.  What a HUGE lie!!! What crap is he feeding you?  Think about it, identify it, then tell him he’s been busted!  You’ve caught a thief stealing away your life.  NO MORE!

He will give you a million reasons why NOT to come to Sunday school.  Why to even stop reading this blog.  He is squirming in his seat, desperate and will do anything to pull you back into the box where you are controlled, managed. If you aren’t struggling with Satan at all it’s probably because you gave up; you are defeated.  He doesn’t need to bother you.  You have been disabled and taken out of the fight.  WAKE UP CHRISTIAN!!! Know who your enemy is.  Know that he is real, know that he wants to destroy you, your family, your friends, your marriage...everything!

What will you do now?  Satan has no power over you.  What are you waiting for? Take him head on and tell him exactly where to go, back to hell!  Fight for your life in Christ!  Break free from any bondage that his lies have caused, the lies that weigh you down.  This is one HUGE step towards your complete freedom in Christ.  His burden is light for you, I know. I rarely talk about my personal storms directly because they are just noise. It is ALL in His hands and when we focus on him and cast aside the liar everything else fades away.

Will you join me?

I love you more than you know, but He loves you so much more than you can understand!

P.S. If you can't get to class because you live outside of Indy or whatever, then I will send you a book, but it is only half of the equation for what we will be learning.  Send me an email with your name and address at and I will mail it to you.  If you are coming to class, don't worry, you will have a copy of the book too! :)

P.P.S. If this is your first time on the blog take a look at past entries.  It will shine some light on what's going on.

P.P.P.S. My next post will be on how God is moving through people right now in Avon, Indiana.  Check out our newly established Charity caring for Orphans/Foster kids, families and single moms at We are also connected to a sister organization that focuses on broken marriages at If you need help, this is the place to start.

"Amazing Grace (My Chains Are Gone)"

Amazing grace
How sweet the sound
That saved a wretch like me
I once was lost, but now I'm found
Was blind, but now I see

'Twas grace that taught my heart to fear
And grace my fears relieved
How precious did that grace appear
The hour I first believed

My chains are gone
I've been set free
My God, my Savior has ransomed me
And like a flood His mercy rains
Unending love, Amazing grace

The Lord has promised good to me
His word my hope secures
He will my shield and portion be
As long as life endures

The earth shall soon dissolve like snow
The sun forbear to shine
But God, Who called me here below
Will be forever mine
Will be forever mine
You are forever mine