Posted in Call, Christ, Disciple, Faith, God, Passion, Prayer, Seek Christ, Serve, Triune God, worship

Where is Church?

Why this question?

In looking around the blog world the other day, I stumbled on a blog by Michelle Lesley. It is well written and thought out but definitely not in line with how I interpret  the teachings within Timothy’s. No problem, 1 John 4:1 tells us to “not believe every spirit, but test the spirits to determine if they are from God, because many false prophets have gone out into the world.”.  I’m not saying Michelle is a false prophet. I am saying that I (we) are to test what we read and hear against God’s word. Not to challenge it or argue against it, but to ensure we are believing, following, sharing, teaching and preaching the right message.

Christ himself gave us an example of how we are to have this conversation in Acts 19:8 when he entered the Lecture Hall of Tyrannus: “Then he entered the synagogue and spoke boldly over a period of three months, engaging in discussion and trying to persuade them about the things of the kingdom of God.”

In a nutshell she was discussing the role of women in the church, which is not what we’ll talk about today. In a brief exchange between us, I asked “If you believe 100% what you have written here, then you believe 100% what you have taught, proselytized, preached (different people will apply different words to what we bloggers do) here. How does your work here not go against what you have said the Bible does? ” Her response took me back, “The instruction is that women are not to preach to, teach Scripture to, or exercise authority over men in the church. A blog is not the church.”

What is Church?

I have written about this before (Where We Gather and Here & Now – Worship) as this question as well as what is worship are ones far too many of us do not understand or experience.

A quick survey of a variety of versions of the Bible show that the word church shows up a little over 100 times in the New Testament. When God talks about the church with us, He is not talking about the man made denominations we’ve created, He’s talking about His people. In the Old Testament, church did equal the Temple and people were expected to gather there for sacrifices and teachings (the men anyway). But in the New Testament, Christ changes this format. The Bible does give references to congregations, but those are congregations of cities or communities, not a physical institution. So, what is church?

For the purist among you, the word church comes from the Greek word ekklesia meaning ‘assembly’ or ‘called out ones’.

First of all, we need to understand that the church is Christ:

“He is also the head of the body, the church;”.   Col 1:24 (HCSB)

Then we need to understand that church is a place of gathering, but it is a place where two or more gather.

For where two or three are gathered together in My name, I am there among them.” Matt 18:20 (HCSB)

Some would argue that the Holy Spirit being present can be counted as one since He is a participant in prayer; I don’t think this supported biblically but can understand the argument when Christ gives us examples like the Garden of Gethsemane.

Then Jesus came with them to a place called Gethsemane, and He told the disciples, “Sit here while I go over there and pray.” Matt 26:36 (HCSB) also Mk 14:32

And when we’re instructed to privately talk with Abba, one-on-one; two are present.

But when you pray, go into your private room, shut your door, and pray to your Father who is in secret.  Matt 6:5-6 (HCSB)

Christ first mentions the work of building a church in Matthew, but He is not talking about the confining walls of a building, but The Church (of Jesus Christ) full of people.

And I also say to you that you are Peter, and on this rock I will build My church, and the forces of Hades will not overpower it.  Matt 16:18 (HCSB)

To truly understand what the church is, we must go to the Book of Acts and recognize some major shifts in societal and physical behaviors. One of the largest is the clarity of the message that no one is excluded.

The Disciples were baptized by The Holy Spirit and received His power (Acts 1:8).
Women were included in acts and in gifts. (Acts 1:14, 2:17,18)
Pentecost brought the time of speaking in tongues so the Word of God would be heard by so many more. (Acts 2:4)
One expectation was laid out for followers, REPENT.  (Acts 2-38-40)
A picture of church is presented, people who devote themselves to learning, gathering, breaking of bread (eating) with a joyful and humble attitude, and praising. (Acts 2:42,46)

With all of this, we can now go to the question, are we on this blog, a church? Are we discussing, teaching, preaching, sharing, learning and supporting each other in the name of Christ? Are we asking questions to ensure what we learn is true? Does this technology allow us to find God, Jesus and the Holy Spirit? I believe so and I believe I am responsible for each person who reads or shares this.

What I do not believe is that this makes me the head of a church or places me over any man who may be reading this. Just as women were including in the act of praying in the upper room, teaching in homes throughout Acts and receiving calls directly to guide others, they were not the head of their churches; they were answering God’s call to teach, proselytize, praise, whatever their gift was.

After Michelle and I chatted, I searched out many more blogs and websites hosted by women Christians and I was astonished at how many did not accept responsibility, most saying (in various ways), ‘I can not control who reads what I write’ and ‘if a man chooses to read my writings that is on him’. Really? How is ones accountability for what one shares with one gender any different than the other?

I stand in my conclusion that, I am a Disciple and it is my humble prayer that God uses me, through the Holy Spirit, to reach out to anyone who knows or does not know Him who saves us all, and provides either encouragement or hunger for their own walk with the Triune God. I know I am challenged when I sit down and do this blog for fear of false teachings [2 Peter 2:1]. I humbly pray if any of you ever feel I am guilty, you hold a conversation here with me so we all may grow.

FYI: Those of you that have followed me for a while know I use a multitude of versions of the Bible. I do this for two reasons; one, some versions have wording that is easier to understand and two, to help show that although the words may be in a different order, the meaning is the same. Currently I’m using The Apologetics Study Bible (Holman Christian Standard Bible (HCSB)).

Posted in Call, Disciple, Gifts, God, worship

Pitch Perfect

Quick, whose the best singer ever?

Elvis Presley? Ella Fitzgerald? Frank Sinatra? Robert Planet? Aretha Franklin? Peter Gabriel? Miles Davis? Bruno Mars? The argument can go on forever. I mean, what is best? Style? Vocal range? Story telling? Entertainment style?

David is one of my favorites. David, from the bible. I have no idea what kind of voice he had but here’s what I know, he was always rejoicing or making a joyful noise or encouraging others to do the same. He called on people to blow their horns and shake the tambourines, literally and figuratively. Even when he was in his dark days and he struggled to find his way, he continued to make noise, to use this noise to reach others, just read the book of Psalms or the books of Samuel.

Of all his teachings that talk about using music in worship, 2 Samuel 6:22-23 (ESV) tells us how free we should be.

David returned home to bless his family. Michal, Saul’s daughter, came out to greet him: “How wonderfully the king has distinguished himself today—exposing himself to the eyes of the servants’ maids like some burlesque street dancer!” David replied to Michal, “In God’s presence I’ll dance all I want! He chose me over your father and the rest of our family and made me prince over God’s people, over Israel. Oh yes, I’ll dance to God’s glory—more recklessly even than this. And as far as I’m concerned . . . I’ll gladly look like a fool . . . but among these maids you’re so worried about, I’ll be honored no end.”

So what’s my point? Especially if you can’t sing? The point is, sing anyway. We’re all called to make a joyful noise. (ESV)

… let us make a joyful noise to the rock of our salvation! Psalm 95:1
… let us make a joyful noise to him with songs of praise! Psalm 95:2
Make a joyful noise to the Lord, all the earth; break forth into joyous song and sing praises! Psalm 98:4
With trumpets and the sound of the horn make a joyful noise before the King,  the Lord! Psalm 98:6
Make a joyful noise to the Lord, all the earth! Psalm 100:1

God’s hearing is perfect. His tuning ability, unbeatable. To him, every tone is right on, every tempo is the exact count, every strum has the right capo, and every brass has plenty of air.

God just wants us to give Him our praise, be it by singing, dancing, playing an instrument, clapping, praising, praying or celebrating Him. He wants us to give Him whatever our heart wants us to give Him.

Let each one give [thoughtfully and with purpose] just as he has decided in his heart, not grudgingly or under compulsion, for God loves a cheerful giver [and delights in the one whose heart is in his gift]. 2 Corinthians 9:7 (AMP)

Praise your God loudly and proudly!

Be blessed.

Posted in Advent, Call, Christ, Disciple, God, Lord, Passion, Seek Christ, Triune God

Therefore, Go …

Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, —Matthew 28:19 NIV

Where are you going?

Today. Where are your feet taking you?  Where are the wheels of your car transporting you?  Where are the words you are going to speak or write or think, thus act on (or not), going to land?

Where are you rushing off to now that I’ve made you very uncomfortable?

If you’re not uncomfortable, good for you, maybe you’re on track.  Maybe I’m on track.  If you are uncomfortable, STOP!

I confess, I never know what words are going to go on this page until I have prayed.  I do believe they are from my heart, but inspired; that they are messages for someone, sometimes me, out there reading this someday.  Maybe it’s you today, so just stop for a moment.

Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, —Matthew 28:19 NIV

Every Sunday when I leave church I wonder how many really heard more than just the words and went through just the motions.  How many of my fellow ‘Christians’ are not just going through the habit of acting like they believe.  

When is the last time you’ve read, considered and accepted the words of Matthew 28:19?  When is the last time you spoke of Jesus with another person let alone a non-believer?  When is the last time you did more than let your neighbors let you see your home in your Sunday best going to that place those people go to instead of sleeping in?  When is the last time you explained the Triune God to anyone or even mentioned them to anyone?

I know, this is a scary thing to do.  I remember first stepping out and being excluded because people didn’t want to offend me.  So I went anyway and showed them I could be a Christian there too, and after a while, some of them came to me so I could disciple.

From here courage increased.  No, not everyone came and accepted, but that was okay, everyone isn’t my job, but someone was.  Next came the harder task, the person I was to get in their face about.  That was a near 10-year task.  Life by example at first, then gentle nibbles, then face-to-face, over drinks, hard conversations.  He didn’t turn into a rebel rousing preacher, but I don’t doubt his place in heaven.  I’m not telling these stories to brag, but to give you examples of where your feet could take you today, tomorrow and always.

Live as He desires you to live, others will see and ask, then answer.

Speak of Him, them, gently and unobtrusively.  When a heart is softened, it will seek to know more from you.

When your told to be a Paul and get assertive, say “Yes Sir”, pick up your Bible and whatever other tools you need and go.  It will hurt and be hard but oh the eternal payment will make it so worth it! Angels will be singing!

Remember, you’re not a denomination, you’re a Christian, a follower of Christ, the Son of God.

Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, —Matthew 28:19 NIV

Posted in Call, Christ, Faith, Freedom, God, Lord, Selflessness

Lives Matter

Driving home from the grocery store yesterday I saw a sign that infuriated me. “Muslim lives matter”.  I’m sick of this.  Enough of <fill in the blank> lives matter, the Bible tells all directly and clearly, consistently in all versions, who matters. Continue reading “Lives Matter”

Posted in Call, God, Prayer, Serve


Last night was a fun, fun night.  Four of my sisters (in-Christ) and I went to what was basically an Antiques Open House.  Several Antiques shops in a small local town opened late, served snacks, drinks and had drawings.  Such a simple evening.  There was a sampler found, a cardinal message from daddy, birdcage whose future is to be a lamp, a candle for a future romantic evening, and the best score of all, corks!   Corks you ask? Yes, but that story is for another day.

In the first store, there were many glorious finds.  Most were well used, well cared for items that reminded us of our childhoods or of a grandparents house.  Some items, like black and white photographs on the wall or the turn of the century wedding dress shimmered with their stories; their story of how the came to be here.  When I got home I flipped on the television and heard that comment about a salt-water fish found in a freshwater body of water, how did it come to be here. Which led me to ask how did I come to be here?

I know, that’s a huge question and it can be answered in any number of ways depending on the meaning behind the question. My question was specifically about this blog.  Peeling the history apart, I believe Romans 1:18-20, God Exists

18 The wrath of God is being revealed from heaven against all the godlessness andCrown of Thorns wickedness of people, who suppress the truth by their wickedness, 19 since what may be known about God is plain to them, because God has made it plain to them. 20 For since the creation of the world God’s invisible qualities—his eternal power and divine nature—have been clearly seen, being understood from what has been made, so that people are without excuse.  (NIV)

I believe Hebrews 13, God prepares, equips & calls each of us

our Lord Jesus, that great Shepherd of the sheep, equip you with everything good for doing his will, (NIV, verses 20 & 21 selected)

I believe Galatians 5:13, I am here to serve you

[ Life by the Spirit ] You, my brothers and sisters, were called to be free. But do not use your freedom to indulge the flesh; rather, serve one another humbly in love.

So, how did I come to be here? I came to be here because God prepares, equips and calls me to do so in order that I may be served.  Your turn, why are you where you are? Pray for God to reveal this to you and He will.

Be blessed, today and always

**side note, my apologies that I’m not getting this done daily yet, recovering from surgery so just not on top of it yet**