My Simple Testimony of Facing Down Fear

Phnom Penh, Cambodia
Phnom Penh, Cambodia

Fear has stolen my life.  Now I am taking back territory.

Sometimes we hear a teaching that really changes our life.  For me a message by Danny Silk did just that.  It was a simple message about our comfort zone and “Championville”.  Championville is out there in that terrifying place that is out of our control.  Something about Championville lit a spark in my spirit.  I wanted to be in Championville.

So I drew out his illustration from the lesson and kept it on my desk for a long time.  I would look at it and wonder, can I go there?  Finally I decided if I didn’t do something now, I would never do anything.  So following the motto go big or go home, I picked the craziest, most radical group I knew to join for a missions trip to South East Asia – the Banov’s from Global Celebration.

As I prepared to go, I knew if God didn’t show up, I would be an utter failure and failure was my biggest fear.  However, if God did show up, then what I believed in my head would become what I actually experienced and knew in my heart.

God, of course, showed up as he always does when we step out in faith.  And even though to the world’s eyes I might not have been the most outgoing, “successful” team member, just being there was a great victory.  Father wrapped me in his love and peace the entire trip.  I simply rested in that place and followed along.  Fear did not and could not infiltrate his wings of love.

We experienced amazing things – healing, salvation, love, joy.  We were blessed with getting to love on and minister to orphans, individuals in the red light district, individuals who lived and worked at the garbage dumps, and in the slums. It was an amazing and life changing experience that would not have happened if I had listened to the voice of fear.

2 Timothy 1: 7 (AMP): “For God did not give us a spirit of timidity (of cowardice, of craven and cringing and fawning fear), but [He has given us a spirit] of power and of love and of calm and well-balanced mind and discipline and self control.” 

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Kingdom Realities

lion-and-lambThe Kingdom of Heaven is Spiritual, but it manifests in the physical.

If we are in the Kingdom of God, we are not in the Kingdom of the World.  If we are not in the Kingdom of the World, then we don’t operate by its principles.  We operate by the principles of the Kingdom of God.

The Kingdom of Heaven looks like something.  It looks like a feast of love, peace, joy, forgiveness, wholeness, healing, deliverance, mercy, and goodness.

Those in the Kingdom of Heaven are wearing a wedding garment – the robe of Jesus’ righteousness.

Those in the Kingdom of God are enjoying a great feast prepared by the Father to honor his Son.

When we are born through water and the Spirit, Father delivers us into the Kingdom of his Son with pleasure and celebration.

The Kingdom of God is a construct that is outside the religious, political, and economic construct of this world.  In fact, it defeated the construct of this world. [Colossians 2:15 “Then Jesus made a public spectacle of all the powers and principalities of darkness, stripping away from them every weapon and all their spiritual authority and power to accuse us.  And by the power of the cross, Jesus led them around as prisoners in a procession of triumph.  He was not their prisoner; they were his!” The Passion Translation]

Hidden One

The Hidden One sings –

Hidden in your love

Hidden in your mercy

Under the wings of the mercy seat

Protected by my Jesus

Loved and adored by the King

Who dare touch one of His Hidden Ones!

The King replies –

Dwell in the secret place, my Love

Never leave this abode

Your hope and peace reside here

Enter in and never leave

The rest reserved for my people – it is this secret place

Where you stay hidden in my love

Surrounded by my presence

Saturated in my peace

A place of total rest and restoration

A continual, eternal Jubilee!

Love Letters from Jesus: Awaken! Awaken! Awaken!

rose gardenI wait for you my love.  I am outside in the garden calling to you.  My voice rises to your heart calling you forth.  Rush into my embrace of love.  There is nothing purer, nothing greater than my love for you.  You are like a tender child peaking out, looking for me.  Hesitant to run out, afraid of harsh words.  But there is nothing negative in me.  I only come to heal and love you.  I come to restore and maintain your innocence.  Your child like faith is there.  I come to restore you.  Let me touch your heart and bring forth the wonderful treasures there.  Trust in me always to love and adore you.

I see you coming – running through the door.  Your radiant beauty illuminates the garden.  Your song is more beautiful than the birds.  Your scent more pleasing than the roses.  You fill my garden with love.  I love you dearly.  You are my beloved.  Share your heart with me.

Love Letters from Jesus: Plunge Deeper

Drink of my love.  Inhale my peace and joy.  Breathe deeply of my love and plunge whole heartedly into my river.  The springs are open and flowing forth from the city of love.  The water is ever widening and deepening.  My righteousness covers my people; my flood of love overwhelms them.  Come into all fullness.  Enter into the kingdom of unbelievable fulfillment in our relationship.  Shake off doubts and fears caused by the enemy’s lies.  Hurl them away like the filth that they are and completely embrace me, because I completely embrace you.  You are hidden in my secret place – protected and cherished forever.  Relish your place of endearment.  I brought you to this place with my love, my mercy.  My fire for you and in you is not extinguishable – you are mine forever.

New Man

I was reading Ephesians chapter 2, and thinking about the way Jesus created a new man through the cross. Isaac (representing Jews) and Ishmael (representing Gentiles) through the cross are one new man reconciled to God in Christ. Both now have free access to the Father. As I contemplated this, the following equation came to mind which I hope blesses you.

(Isaac + Ishmael) x the cross = (the new man)^Christ 

In other words, Isaac plus Ishmael times the cross equal the new man raised to the power of Christ.

So let’s subtract any thoughts from our minds that tell us “we can’t”, and replace them with, “I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me”.  It is His power operating through us – Christ is in us, and we are in Christ.  Now that is some math I like!

Who Are You in Christ?

bride_warriorIf we truly understood who and what we are in Christ Jesus, would it change the world?  I think so.  The early followers of Christ lived a supernatural lifestyle, and turned the known world at the time upside down.  I believe they knew who they were in Christ and lived from that place instead of trying to achieve something they already had.  The following list from the writings of Paul describe who and what we are in Christ now.  It isn’t a description of what we are trying to become.  Let us strive to grasp the reality of who we are and live from that place of total victory.

 

From Galatians:

Dead to the Law

Alive to God

Crucified with Christ

Christ lives in us

Children of Abraham

Redeemed from the curse of the law

Children of God

Clothed in Christ

Heirs of the promise

Children of Promise

Born through the Spirit

Children of the free woman (Sarah)

Living by the Spirit

Free

Adopted by God

Led by the Spirit

From Ephesians:

Blessed with all spiritual blessing of heaven in Christ

Holy

Faultless

Adopted Sons

Free

Forgiven

Stamped with the seal of the Holy Spirit

Raised with Christ and placed with Him in heaven

God’s work of art created in Christ Jesus

Brought to life with Christ

Fellow citizens with the Holy People of God

Part of God’s household

Brought close to God

A new man

Reconciled to God

Holy Temple in the Lord

Dwelling place of God in the Spirit

Body of Christ

God’s dear children

Children of light

Filled with the Spirit

Glorious, with no speck or wrinkle, holy, faultless

From Colossians:

Free

Forgiven

Fortified with His glorious strength with all power

Rescued

Transferred to the kingdom of Christ

Reconciled

Holy

Faultless

Irreproachable

Christ in us, the hope of glory

Living in Christ

Rooted in Christ

Built up on Christ

Fulfilled in Christ

In Christ circumcised – the complete stripping of natural self

Buried with Christ

Raised up with Christ

Brought to life with Christ

Hidden with Christ in God

Our life is Christ

Chosen of God

Holy people whom he loves

Home

Sunrise

The starting point?  I don’t know the starting point.  The result?  Yes, I am all too familiar with the result.  Fear, anxiety, depression, illness, confusion – a long list of dysfunction.  Amazingly, despite my journey of self-destruction, my Father continued to sustain, preserve, and guide me to His destiny.

My eyes unveiled, dawn breaks forth, freedom calls me to new territory.  New territory in the Kingdom of God – set aside especially for me by my glorious Father.  He’s been waiting for my return.  He never once stopped looking, scanning the horizon for me.  “Father, I’m home!”

 

Pursuit

explosionWhen God pursues man and man pursues God a phenomenal collision takes place, and in an exhilarating explosion a new creation is birthed in the spirit. When it happens, we enter the Kingdom of God.
“Jesus answered, Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except a man be born of water and of the Spirit, he cannot enter into the kingdom of God.” John 3:5

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