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Category Archives: Intimacy with God

It’s what it’s all about, folks

Easter: It’s More

Every year around this time, we can count on bumper-sticker-worthy quips and sermonettes reminding us that Easter is about more than egg-laying bunnies and candy. Most people–even if they don’t believe it–have heard this. So I’ll trust that we’re all on the same page here, and move on to what’s been occupying my heart this pre-dawn Easter morning.

Easter is more.

Read the rest of this entry »

 
 

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Not to Be Pitied

I was thinking about the Cross the other day, and the incredible severity of what Jesus went through. Of course, there is the physical pain that He endured — the scourging, the blows with a rod, and the slow, agonizing death of crucifixion. There is the interpersonal aspect, from being betrayed to being abandoned and denied. To top it all off, there is the spiritual trauma, both of bearing the world’s sins and of the terrifying interruption of the divine fellowship of the Trinity. No one in the history of creation has endured the kind of suffering that Jesus did.

When we see this — really see it — it is jarring. It can and should deeply impact our emotions. But there is one response it should not elicit in us: pity. Read the rest of this entry »

 

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Best. Sermon. EVER.

I’m working on a post on Genesis 1-3 right now, to continue the series on exegesis of passages pertaining to women’s role in ministry. Hopefully that will be out in a day or two.

In the meantime, I want to highlight what is perhaps the clearest, most inspiring, all-around gripping sermon on night and day prayer I have ever heard. I’ve heard a lot of them in the past seven years. All of them have been really, really good. And I’m not exaggerating about this one.

Stephen Venable rocked FCF this Sunday with his message. Download the mp3 by clicking here. Get the notes (Word Document) by clicking here. Or go directly to IHOP-KC’s website and watch the video archive here. I was at the 6:00pm service. It rocked.

Go. Listen. Watch. Read. Get inspired to pray and worship more. And then do it more.

 
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Posted by on April 27, 2010 in Intercession, Intimacy with God

 

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Friendships, Airships, Internships

(Okay, so technically “airship” is a blimp, not a plane, but I was on a roll with the “-ships” and couldn’t help myself.)

A couple of weeks ago, I had to say goodbye to a very dear friend of mine. I am not a big fan of change in general. I am an especially not-big-fan of change when it means shipping my friend and roommate of almost five years to the other side of the planet — literally — with no clear idea of when I get to see her again.

Of course, this was a day we had anticipated for a long time. International migration is not exactly something that happens on the spur of the moment. For years, it was that unpleasant necessity that loomed on the horizon — an unpleasant necessity I preferred to mostly not think about. However, in the last months, when the countdown to my friend’s departure was much more urgent, I found myself thinking about it a lot. I only had close access to this person for a short time. How could I maximize the time and connection we had together before it was time to say goodbye? Read the rest of this entry »

 
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Posted by on March 30, 2010 in Heart Stuff, Intimacy with God

 

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One Person

In the past few days, I’ve been fascinated to think of Jesus as one Person. At first, that sounds like a pretty inane thing to be fascinated by. After all, everyone else I know is only one person apiece, and that doesn’t strike me as the least bit exciting. However, I’ve been thinking about this as it pertains to Jesus’ incarnation.

In Christology, it can be said that there are four main pillars of truth concerning who Jesus is and what His nature is like. They are:

  1. Jesus is fully God
  2. Jesus is fully Man
  3. Jesus has two distinct natures
  4. Jesus is one, unconfused Person

(In fact, if you’ve been reading this blog for a super long time — and have an exceptional memory — you might notice that we’ve discussed these points before.)

So what is the significance of Jesus being one Person? Why put so much emphasis on something that seems so self-evident? Read the rest of this entry »

 

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“Leave Her Alone”

“I charge you, O daughters of Jerusalem, by the gazelles or by the does of the field, do not stir up nor awaken love until [she] pleases.” (Song of Solomon 2:7)

My worship team is currently studying through the Song of Solomon together. I was reading through it the other day when this verse struck me. (Note to anyone who happened to stumble across this blog: I am studying Song of Solomon through the classical allegorical interpretation. If you disagree with that, you probably won’t like this post. Fair warning.) 🙂

It’s important to see the context of this verse in order to get a fuller grasp of what it means. And no, I don’t think it is primarily about being a flagship quote for the True Love Waits movement, as much as I appreciate true love waiting. ANYWAY. Read the rest of this entry »

 
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Posted by on January 26, 2010 in Bible, Intimacy with God, Song of Solomon

 

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Consider Him Who Endured

…let us run with endurance the race that is set before us, looking unto Jesus, the author and finisher of our faith, who for the joy that was set before Him endured the cross, despising the shame, and has sat down at the right hand of the throne of God. For consider Him who endured such hostility from sinners against Himself, lest you become weary and discouraged in your souls. (Hebrews 12:1-3, emphasis added)

“Consider Him… lest you become weary and discouraged in your souls.” I love this verse. Perhaps it isn’t terrifically obvious at first glance how this works. After all, I don’t think anyone walked out of a showing of The Passion of the Christ pumping their fists, ready to take on the world. At least for me, thinking about blood, torture, and humiliation doesn’t generally fire me up for action. So how does considering Jesus’ endurance of suffering give our hearts strength?

There are lots of  potential answers to that question. In fact, there are lots of right answers to that question. But one in particular has been striking my heart lately — and here’s a hint: It’s not about inducing a guilt trip. Read the rest of this entry »

 

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When Unprofitable Servants are Served

If you read this blog, I imagine you have been keeping up with the awakening meetings taking place at IHOP-KC. If by some remarkable chance you haven’t heard, the Holy Spirit has been moving on us (especially on our student body) in an unusual way lately. You can watch live meetings Wednesday-Sunday, starting at 6pm (Central), as well as watch some amazing archives and testimonies, at www.ihop.org/watch.

You can read the explanation of what is going on at the IHOP website. Plus, you can go read a couple of great posts by Zack Hensley and Randy Bohlender  with some further thoughts on the meetings. As I consider what has already been said, along with what could be said, and how much I’m still trying to get my own bearings on things right now, it is hard to decide how to write about this. At one level, I have to say something — we are having healings, deliverances, and salvations breaking out after all — but at another level, what can I say? (Except for: “Seriously folks, if you haven’t tuned in to any of it yet, get on www.ihop.org/watch sometime this Wed-Sunday.”)

This has something to do with the pronounced lack of blog posts so far this month.

Yet as I was reading through the book of Luke recently, I was struck with two passages that exactly speak to what I’ve been feeling about this season of awakening. Read the rest of this entry »

 

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Incognito Legalism

Few things are as universally decried in today’s western Church as legalism. To many of us, the worst possible name anyone could label us is “Pharisee”. We all (rightly) want to avoid that pit of buidling rules upon rules, religiously adhering to stringent requirements that God never commanded. Most young believers today would have no problem identifying and avoiding that kind of legalism. We are culturally geared to not really like the confinements of rules anyway, so we are more than happy to call legalism what it is.

However, there’s an entire other side to legalism that the vast majority of us embrace. Ironically enough, the people most prone to it are the loudest proclaimers of personal freedom. It’s much more covert, but it’s just as real and locks our hearts up just as quickly. Read the rest of this entry »

 
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Posted by on October 13, 2009 in Bible, Intimacy with God

 

Not Making Peace with Oppression

A while ago, Stuart Greaves addressed the NightWatch concerning praying for healing. It was in February, which is historically a time when a lot of us tend to get sick. Not only is February the beginning of flu season, it comes right after our most taxing, demanding, sleep-depriving conference of the year. Additionally, because it’s towards the end of winter, it means we haven’t seen much sun for quite a long time. All things considered, it makes sense that we would be a bit more susceptible to the seasonal bug.

However, Stuart reminded us that sickness is not something God is okay with (case in point, it won’t exist in the New Jerusalem). Part of the reason He crushed His Son was for our healing (Isa 53:5). It’s good that our faith is not devastated when we get sick, but it’s not good that we passively roll over and accept sickness just becuase it’s normal to our fallen existence and we’ll get over it in a few weeks anyway. We should resist it and pray to remove it from us.

I’ve been increasingly convinced lately that the same thing applies to emotional distress and oppression. Read the rest of this entry »

 
 

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