Cultivating a passion for compassion

To the word… shall we? Luke 7:11-16: “It came to pass the day after, that he went into a city called Nain; and many of his disciples went with him, and much people (a large crowd). Now when he came nigh to the gate of the city, behold, there was a dead man carried out, the only son of his mother, and she was a widow: and much people (large crowd) of the city was with her.

And when the Lord SAW her, HE HAD COMPASSION ON HER, and said unto her, Weep not.  And he came and TOUCHED the bier  (open coffin): and they that bare him  (carried the coffin)  STOOD STILL.

And he said, Young man, I say unto thee, Arise. And he that WAS dead SAT UP, and began to speak. And he (Jesus) delivered him to his mother.

And there came a fear on all (fear seized them all): and they glorified God, saying, That a great prophet has RISEN among us; and that GOD HATH VISITED HIS PEOPLE.” 

I know the look of this writing format is not the greatest but it is kinda tricky to say it in my head and expect everyone to read it with the points I would so stress vocally… so we instead get this big bold words to hit the preferred points.

Going be, hopefully ‘talking’ about compassion or rather the lack thereof. I will admit I get very angry, very easily with the stories of people who do things that are just so mean and sometimes hearing peoples thoughts, takes, and advice in dealing with everything from children to pets and sometimes I just want to scream, “WHAT is wrong with you people?!” 

I still think the “wrong” part is what helped usher in the falling away of the church, especially taught in the old days, teaching against women and that everyone and everything was to be brought “into submission” through hitting and brow beating, that church shaming keep the flock in check, when actually it ran them out, and the Bible teaches us that love “discreetly” covers matters.

The old school-house rules of teachers actually calling bullied kids “tattle-tales” instead of defending them. So it is not to be a shock that people who “grow up” under these teaching and in homes with these thoughts often (NOT ALWAYS) cling to those same destructive mentality as adults.

Doubt it? Well how babies do you think are born as white supremacists, or born  with any other natural inclination to hatred and violence, or to hold any other poisonous prejudiced belief.  NONE, we are created completely equal, with no hate, or distrust toward anyone.

Infants do not even have to capacity to hate. Anger itself is supposed to be three to six months of age and shame around thirty-six months, but hatred is its own monster and usually it is taught or birthed from a neglectful, abusive environment.

So if a person has never been taught love, compassion, and mercy how can we expect them to show it? And it is so easy for us to give into our own hatred and disgust (which IS still wrong, I fully admit I wrestle with it in many instances) because we can’t understand how people can not see that there is a better way. Compassion which is one the most precious attributes of the Lord, among his innumerable is the most often overlooked, and avoided of them all. So much with hell and brimstone, which I also preach, and do not feel is preached nearly enough,  but it has to be in context with the conviction spirit drawing people, convicting them of their need of salvation.

Only God can bring true conviction, saving conviction, conviction that will bring change as he himself cautioned all to “TURN from their WICKED ways”.

ALL of us who are truly of the body of Christ have felt that conviction, we were made fully aware of our ways and how truly wicked and sinful our lives had been, that is what gets through to us.

We can never do that, we don’t “get people saved” we can make people feel shame, fear, guilt, (which is again, all WRONG) and try to “get them saved” and only make them feel like dirt and view us as “judgy” hypocrites, causing them to run even farther away…which is what brought us to this post!

People can only be told so many times that what they say is sinful, what they think is sinful, what they wear… AGAIN sinful before they just finally give up.

What we THE WORLD needs is compassion, we NEED a revival of compassion. I have said this before and probably will again, but the most missed point of all time has been COMPASSION, Jesus IS compassion and I love the story from Luke, because NO ONE had to ask him to do this, NO ONE told him about this lady or her son, of course being God, I am sure He knew, but for our recorded information NO ONE else brought this to his attention. We are told that he SAW her, he SAW her pain, he SAW that this was her only child, he SAW her widowhood and being God, He SEES it all.

And he had COMPASSION, which literally means a mixture of love and sorrow for the plight of another, suffering that feeling WITH them. And that is what we miss and the world misses.

When we see each other hurting, even someone we don’t know well, or even at all, as Christians, that compassion Jesus had SHOULD rise up in us also, just as the man in our verse ROSE and just as Jesus ROSE in victory.

Compassion has the power to do that. COMPASSION is the love and mercy of God coming into a dark situation and RAISING UP a completely different standard and changing the outcome for all concerned.

And just as hatred is taught, compassion can be taught also, when you offer others a “different” way of dealing with something that see as a problem and others can learn compassion from how you treat them. It is part of being that light Jesus left us to be and why he gave us these wonderful teachings:

Luke 6:31-37: “And as ye would that men should do to you, do ye also them likewise. For if ye love ONLY them that love you, what thank (credit) have ye? for SINNERS also love those that love those that love them.

And if ye do good to them which do good to you, what thank (credit) have ye? for SINNERS also do even the same. And if ye lend to them of whom ye hope to receive, what thank (credit) have ye? for SINNERS also lend to SINNERS, to receive as much again.

But love your enemies, and do good, and lend, hoping for nothing again (in return); and your reward shall be great, and YE SHALL BE THE CHILDREN OF THE HIGHEST: FOR HE IS KIND UNTO THE UNTHANKFUL AND TO THE EVIL.

BE YE THEREFORE MERCIFUL, AS YOUR FATHER ALSO IS MERCIFUL. Judge not, and ye shall not be judged: condemn not, and ye shall not be condemned: forgive and ye shall be forgiven.”

And we know exactly WHO is speaking to here, he differentiated “the church” from “the sinners” so we would have no doubt who he was speaking to. He is speaking to us, his entire “church” and as he pointed out THE traits and actions are what proves us as his children!

And He IS merciful, and He IS kind and in being those things it CHANGES hearts. Back to the innocence babies, when a child has never been shown compassion or taught compassion, or raised with half-truths, never taught tenderness, gentleness, or mercy they can not be expected to just spontaneously produce these traits.

At some point the Lord has to have it shown to them, thus teaching that better way. And with everything we learn, it requires time, patience, and two willing hearts, one giving and one receiving and there is nothing greater we can give than the love of Christ and nothing greater we can show aside his enduring, endless mercy, as the Bible tells us “His compassions faileth not” meaning his compassion is never-ending. 

And he EXPECTS us to be a reflective of himself, we NEED to start checking that reflection and if we find that we are lacking, we need to pray for his compassion, and mercy to RISE inside of us. 

Pray that he would give us spiritual eyes to see what he wants us to see in others.

Pray that he would give us spiritual ears to hear the very cry of wounded souls that are often hidden behind outwardly angry appearances.

Pray that our spiritual hearts are open to his leading and prompting by his Holy Spirit to minister to those needs and show us the time to give that ministration when it would be received.

Pray that the compassion of this world would be stirred, that the spirit of love, mercy, and meekness would take hold of hearts thought to be so cold they would never warm.

Pray that those cold stones learn a better way and then, my friend, that love will spread and that love will save!

Would you be interested to know the MEANING of Nain, which was the name of the city Jesus ENTERED into and RESURRECTED the widow’s son? 

Nain means BEAUTIFUL PLEASANTNESS!!!  Now don’t you want others to also know that through mercy and compassion, we are INVITED to ENTER into that BEAUTIFUL PLEASANTNESS with him?!!!

Cover yourself in it! Wear it for the whole world to see!

Colossians 3:12-16: “PUT ON therefore, AS THE ELECT OF GOD, HOLY AND BELOVED, BOWELS (tender mercies) OF MERCIES, KINDNESS, HUMBLENESS OF MIND, MEEKNESS, AND LONGSUFFERING;

Forbearing (bearing with) one another, and forgiving one another, if any man have a quarrel against any even as Christ forgave you, so also do ye.

And ABOVE ALL THESE THINGS , PUT ON CHARITY, (love)  WHICH IS THE BOND OF PERFECTNESS. And LET the PEACE of GOD RULE YOUR HEARTS, to which also ye are called in one body and BE YE THANKFUL.

Let the WORD of Christ DWELL in you richly in ALL wisdom; TEACHING and ADMONISHING (warn gently) ONE ANOTHER…”

Thanks for reading! Love and peace to you and yours this upcoming week!  God bless you!

Εξυπνιζω Φλογιζω Σαλπιζω NB 2018

Love this song, still moves me to tears, beautiful, beautiful lyrics!

 

 

 

“Raised by wolves”

“And Joshua the son of Nun, the servant of the Lord, died, being an hundred and ten years old. And they buried him in the border of his inheritance in Timnath heres, in the mount of Ephraim, on the north side of the hill Gaash.

And also all that generation were gathered unto their fathers (had died) and there AROSE ANOTHER GENERATION after them, which KNEW NOT THE LORD, NOR YET THE WORK WHICH HE HAD DONE FOR ISRAEL.

And the children of Israel did evil in the sight of the Lord, and served Baalim: And they forsook the Lord, the God of their fathers, which brought them out of the land of Egypt, and FOLLOWED other gods, of the gods OF THE PEOPLE THAT WERE ROUND ABOUT THEM, and bowed themselves unto them, and PROVOKED THE LORD TO ANGER.

AND THEY FORSOOK THE LORD, AND SERVED Baal and Ashtaroth (pagan Canaanite “deities”demons).” Judges 2:8-13

About my title… I actually like wolves, the furry animal ones and believe in supporting conservation of their habitats and their protection, so this is going to be about those OTHER wolves.

The spiritual ones and we all know that they are among us and they do try to fit in and fake you out as to their true identity but those are just one type of wolf, I want to talk to you about another.

Just plain old run of the mill wolves, ones who are just naturally exactly what they are. Never been saved, never even thought about it, just spend their lives doing whatever they want, whenever they want and usually not much of it is good.

Wolves run in packs, but they always have a leader,or leader ‘couple”, not always by being the strongest, but by taking care of the needs of the pack, knowing what the pack needs and making it happen and sometimes they will take in young pups to raise as their own and make them a member of the pack.

I am quite afraid this is the major problem so many Christians have in staying the course for Christ. If you had been “raised” up in the world by parents or a parent that did NOT serve God or teach you anything about God or exposed you to false religions, and you had grown up in  a home with drinking, partying, and all the things that come with that, while maybe socially acceptable, maybe even holding to some value system, still in no way has prepared you to live a life with behavior fitted according to the standard of God.

Kinda like, the old phrase, “When in Rome, do as the Romans do” more less, do as your parents, your friends, do as you have been taught. What about those little pups that are adopted into the pack?

Same deal, we respond as we have been taught. I do know that some things God just places in us at birth, that deep intuition knowing right from wrong and that little tugging that sets off the alarm that even when a wolf says something that is happening is okay, you know, by that feeling in your stomach that it really isn’t.

The Lord instills that in us that no matter where life takes us that we will long for more, we will know there is more than just this life, and we will one day break away from the pack and seek that which we have never known and have never been taught because one day we realize that just because the pack takes us in and raised us as their own, still DOES NOT MAKE US A WOLF.

Often when you announce your salvation people will seem genuinely happy for you and they will even congratulate you, encourage you, and wolves especially will sometimes confess they “probably need to get saved too” and this all seems good.

 BUT if you have been “raised by wolves” I promise you all they are doing is marking off your new territory as their new hunting ground and they will soon want you to get you back running with the pack.

And I have seen this far to many times, someone will get saved and soon  the old friends show up along with the old habits, and the old ways after God has delivered them from that bondage because you can’t be a lamb and run with wolves!

People end up back on drugs, back out in sin because they refuse to “lose their life” in order to find it and listen to the wrong people.

Matthew 16:24-26: ” Then said Jesus unto his disciples, If any man will come after me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross, and follow me.

For whosoever will save his life shall lose it; and whosoever will lose his life for my sake shall find it.

For what is a man profited, if he gain the whole world, and lose his own soul? or what shall a man give in exchange for his soul?

I understand this somewhat referred to the deaths of his followers BUT  I also believe He was also referring to the loss of our lifestyles, friends, and anything we have surrendered at the cross in order to serve Him. Denying ourselves is denying the will of the flesh and the desire to return to the behaviors and sin we were freed from.

2 Corinthians 5:17: ‘Therefore if any man be in Christ, HE IS A NEW CREATURE (creation) : OLD THINGS ARE PASSED AWAY; BEHOLD ALL THINGS ARE BECOME NEW.”

ALL NEW! Doesn’t get any better than that, every sin, every failure, every mistake covered by the blood and washed away FOREVER! And we’ve got to keep it that way!

You know the best defense against a wolf? STAND YOUR GROUND they want you running when they attack, so you have to stand your ground and they will back down and back off and you can’t let them keep hanging around.

Here’s the WORD on it, to go back to our starter verse, Judges chapter one deals with how the tribes were told to destroy the inhabitants out of the lands God had given them and the fact that many did not destroy them but rather kept company with them and they were soon visited by an angel of the Lord to be reminded of WHAT they had been told. 

Judges 2:1-4: “And an angel of the Lord came up from Gilgal to Bochim, and said , I made you to go up out of Egypt, and have brought you unto the land which I sware unto your fathers; and I SAID I WILL NEVER BREAK MY COVENANT WITH YOU,

AND YE SHALL MAKE NO LEAGUE (treaty) WITH THE INHABITANTS OF THIS LAND; YE SHALL THROW DOWN THEIR ALTARS: BUT YE HAVE NOT OBEYED MY VOICE: WHY HAVE YOU DONE THIS?

WHEREFORE I ALSO SAID, I WILL NOT DRIVE THEM OUT FROM BEFORE YOU: BUT THEY SHALL BE AS THORNS IN YOUR SIDES, AND THEIR GODS SHALL BE A SNARE UNTO YOU.” 

Never heard it? Well, we have now, if we do not throw down those spiritual altars, you know all the things that have been more important than God, all the spiritual altars where God-given virtues have been sacrificed for the pleasures of this world. And have no relations with the “inhabitants” of the land of your past, because the will be allowed to become a thorn in your flesh and their “gods” of drugs, sex, and money will become a trap to you. So watch out for those wolves, they are real, and they are devious, never trust them, don’t listen when they start to howl and don’t back down when they growl, stand your ground and they will quit coming around!

Φλογιζω Σαλπιζω NBJ 2017

I love this song, when I was “in the world” I loved music, all music and much of it, not quite what a Christian should listen too, so I’d get “songs in my head” that I really did not want there and I actually prayed and prayed that when I got “music in my head” that it would be Gospel, and when that time came, this was the song!

Regeneration of Generations

” But YOU ARE A CHOSEN GENERATION, a royal priesthood, an holy nation, a peculiar (special) people; that ye should shew (show) forth the praises of him WHO HATH CALLED YOU OUT OF DARKNESS INTO HIS MARVELOUS LIGHT.” 1 Peter 2:9

CHOSEN, how blessed is that term? Jesus himself in John 15:16a said this:Ye have not chosen me, but I HAVE CHOSEN YOU..”

There is a major difference between going after something for ourselves, of our will and our desires and being chosen for a very specific purpose. Notice this verse is for a chosen GENERATION, meaning a preordained, predestinate group  CHOSEN to be the polar opposite of what came before. 

To allow the Lord to break chains forged over many generations by those who came before us. A chosen generation that would turn back to the Lord, who would choose the paths of righteousness rather than the broken roads of abuse and alcoholism, and addictions. A generation willing to allow God to shape their lives and repair the breaches in the protective walls of salvation, and that would hear God’s voice calling them out of the darkness that has formed over the ages.

Darkness passed on from generation to generation, until that faithful day that God’s voice is heard and centuries of darkness and cursing, poverty, abuse, and sorrow will be transformed by His marvelous light.

 A ROYAL PRIESTHOOD, a generation called to be the messengers, priests to their families and peers on behalf of the heavenly King to tell of the goodness of God and the freedom He offers. And as Jesus tells us, we are CHOSEN for the job. Because through Him, with Him and by the power of His blood we can overcome and to have to be chosen indicates that of a certainty that job, that calling, is not going to be an easy task.

I knew a lady who once told me that she had been baptized as a child, but when she grew up, really late in life, she choose to be baptized again, not because she questioned her salvation but salvation was all she had ever known and wanted to do it as a token to her love of Jesus. I have always thought these people were so blessed, to grow up in the Lord, to be taught scriptures and know of God.

But I do think as “first generations” we can witness to those in the world and understand things that they face and struggle a little better, because we really do understand those feelings.

Now to understand the dynamics of some of those battles “first generations” endure, and it is a battle royal of endurance but I hope by the end of this, you will feel refreshed in your battle and the fire and need to continue and fight hell till the last breath.

Satan knows scripture, he knows every word ever written and he is as sly as he was when he beguiled Eve and he knows to corrupt the plant, to blight it, he would also blight the seed of that plant and so with his temptations and snares he pulls down a plant from the garden of the Lord knowing that he has destroyed the future also.

When God gave the Ten Commandments and the warnings of serving other gods, this verse really jumps out: Exodus 20:5: “Thou shalt not bow down to them, nor serve them: for I the Lord thy God am a jealous God, visiting the iniquity of the fathers upon the children unto the children unto the third and fourth generation of them who hate me.”

So for me, I think to cause this, the ancestors had to really, really turn against God in a most dreadful way, because He is so loving and merciful and to hate him would require such violation and paganism, I can’t fathom.

The hardest concept to wrap our heads around comes when we see Christians who seem to really never have problems while we struggle in areas that never even seem to come to their door, we wonder what is wrong with us? Why do we go through the things but they don’t.

All people have problems, but it is true that some do seem to face battles that are harder, fiercer, and sometimes even bizarre but here is the reason, YOU HAVE BEEN CALLED OUT.

Satan wants you back in that darkness because he knows if he can defeat you, he will defeat EVEN MORE GENERATIONS that come from you. He doesn’t want you leading others to the light and liberty of God.

It is hard to be the “first” on a path, not having a strong spiritual foundation, and to try to understand what you’re doing, where you are going, or how your supposed to get there. And you can see this in the story of the Hebrews being brought of Egypt, most died in the wilderness because they had only known bondage and slavery and could never get into the mindset of true freedom, BUT the NEXT GENERATION went into that land NEVER knowing the horrors of Egypt.

“First Generationers” often feel overwhelmed because their issues are so numerous that it is a process because each issue must be dealt with one at a time or we would be like those who didn’t make it out of the wilderness, we could not handle the rest of our journey with the needed faith and trust life requires, because even coming out of Egypt, the roads ahead could still be sometimes rocky.

Exodus 23:29,30: “I WILL NOT drive them out from before thee in one year; lest the land become desolate, and the beast of the field multiply against thee, By little and little I will drive them out from before thee, UNTIL thou be increased and inherit the land.” 

If everything were suddenly conquered, we would no longer build faith or trust and we would soon be destroyed by the vanities of our minds and leisure.

If you doubt that, read just how many times ancient Israel would prosper and then turn from the Lord thinking they had all they would ever need and how David became so complacent that he didn’t go into battle with his army but chose to have the affair with Bathsheba that brought anguish down on his GENERATION, and Solomon, who had all, peace, all prosperity still rebelled against God in taking pagan wives and worshiping with them.

No, you don’t want to trade in a perfectly good vehicle that may not look great to you right now but is taking you EXACTLY where you need to go for something that appears sharper, faster, but will in the end only drive you had head first into a bad accident. 

Recognize WHO you are and why you fight and why you CAN NEVER give up that fight. Psalm 22:30,31: “A seed shall serve him; it shall be accounted to the Lord for a generation (accounted of the Lord to the NEXT generation) They shall come, and declare his righteousness unto a people that shall be born that he hath done this.”

PSALM 102:28: “The children of thy servants SHALL CONTINUE, and THEIR SEED (descendants) SHALL BE ESTABLISHED BEFORE THEE.” 

Isaiah 54:13: “And all thy children shall be taught if the Lord; and GREAT SHALL BE THE PEACE OF THY CHILDREN.”

See, sometimes the one being fought is not even who the fight is really against. And a good tool to use, as cliché as it may sound, truly is counting blessings, make a list of what you came from and make a list of where you are now, you may just be very surprised.

Hold on to God’s promises and know that you fight and you have to fight for the rights of your parents, your siblings, your children, and your grandchildren, and all that will come after you. You may be hurting now but your trust in the Lord will mean your child will NEVER know what is to hide terrified from a drunken or stoned parent, your child or grandchild will never know the shame and embarrassment of being mentally or verbally abused, the NEXT generation will never know the humiliation of poverty and the pain of hunger and there is no need for me to continue into the places many of you have suffered and tell you, NEVER AGAIN. NEVER AGAIN will you suffer those things and NEVER will your generations.

When God breaks chains, they ARE BROKEN unless we chose to chain ourselves and our families, and our futures  back to Satan’s whipping post. And God has CHOSEN you and He will little by little bring you through all the areas, past all the stumbling blocks set in your way. And He will restore and bless you but don’t give up when you are almost there. Here are some of His promises:

Psalm 22:24,25: ” For he hath not despised nor abhorred the affliction of the afflicted; NEITHER hath he hid his face from him; but when he cried unto him, he heard.” 

“The meek shall eat and be satisfied; they shall praise the Lord that seek him, your heart shall live forever.” Psalm 25:10: “All the paths of the Lord are mercy and truth unto such as keep his covenant and his testimonies.”

Isaiah 54: 14: “In righteousness (right standing with God) shalt thou be ESTABLISHED: thou shalt be far from oppression: for thou shalt not fear: and from terror; for it shall not come near thee.”

Revelation 7:17: ” For the Lamb that is in the midst of the throne shall feed them, and shall lead them unto living waters; and God shall wipe all tears from their eyes.”

Romans 10:11: “For the scripture saith, WHOSOEVER BELIEVETH ON HIM SHALL NOT BE ASHAMED.”

Proverbs 10:22: “The blessing of the Lord maketh rich, and he addeth no sorrow with it.

We could go on and on with wonderful promises and God’s awesome encouragement of “Be not afraid nor be dismayed”, God is with us and for us and He will take you step by step. Just hold and remember all those who will someday be very glad you did!

Φλογίζω Σαλπιζω NBJ 2016

If you have never heard this song, please take a minute and let it minister to your soul and let the power of God break the chains and break them forever!