Writing is something I've always done. Ever since I was little I would would have notebooks full of silly short stories, or ten minute plays. I have probably started around twenty novels in my life, all of which never made it past chapter four. Writing is one of my most treasured hobbies. But recently, I feel the Spirit tugging me to make my writing more of an expanded hobby. Meaning that I don't just write for myself anymore....
My good friend Stefan Brooks sent me this article from RELEVANT. Check it out and enjoy it...I know I did....
We all live by pretty hectic schedules. When we wake up in the morning, we know exactly what our day will hold, from start to finish. This is a fine, organized way to live life. However, this sort of schedule often does not create the type of life environment conducive to spiritual leading.
What I mean by that long-winded, verbose sentence is this. When God shows up in our lives, and presents us with a Spirit led opportunity to talk about him, it is usually not a planned event. More often then not, the Spirit will pop it’s head up right in the middle of our day without warning. This is where the scheduled life and Spirit led living can become at odds. When we script our days out to the last detail, we become one track minded. We are so focused on getting through, one meeting, one class, one project at a time. This type of focus can place spiritual blinders on us, and we run the risk of walking right passed God’s promptings.......
Your love is never ending
Your grace is never failing
Redemption is calling us home....
Micah, like many of the other prophets, had a tough message to give. I have been reading through the minor prophets so far this year and they have all stuck out to and inspired me in their own specific and unique ways. It's funny, because rarely do we receive great encouragement from the prophets, especially the minor ones. But the last chapter of Micah is one big encouragement from God both to Micah himself, and the princes and people of Jerusalem. And this one particular line really lit a fire under my belly...
"...when I fall, I shall arise; when I sit in darkness, the LORD shall be a Light unto me..."
This weekend, take this verse with you everywhere you go and be encouraged that it's the person who gets up one more time then they fall down that truly leans on the grace of God.
When we start something, whether its school, or a sports season as a child, or a class at church or for your masters degree, or maybe you have a personal trainer, or it’s your first day alone on the job after being apprenticed for months. When we start something, I notice we often expect some, what I like to call, warm up time. We show up on the first day not expecting much, maybe a slight walk through. But we certainly aren’t prepared for a normal day, much less a busy day.
I believe that most of the time when God speaks to me, He does it through the stories he tells with my life, and when I look back on them, I can see His hand working so clearly. Thus, during 2012 I will be featuring a Story of the Month. Click below to read January's story....
Potential is one of those intangibles that is of utmost importance. The goal of any project, any career, any life, is to grasp onto it’s full potential, to discover 100% of all it’s possibilities. The problem with this, is today in our culture we are thinking so small. We preach that we believe in excellence, but only to an extent. We set ‘reasonable goals’ to keep them within reach so there is almost no chance of failure. We are told to be the best we can be, as long as it’s within reason.
When we subscribe to the world’s view of excellence, when we accept this view of potential, we fail to believe in the extravagant, the unimaginable, the unbelievable. But the truth is, a God born idea, or a life surrendered to God, at the moment it is birthed, is inherently given the potential to do the unfathomable. God accomplishes what the powers of this world cannot. He’s in the business of creating the extravagant, the unimaginable, the unbelievable. When we begin to change our perception of what we think is possible, we look at what we used to think was 100% of our potential, and realize we were only really giving 60. God brings us to the 100% that really is 100%.
The limits of our potential that we set in our minds dictate the limits our potential will reach in our lives. God is interested in blowing the roof off of our limits and moving our thinking onto an entirely new track. This is a track where the blind see, and the lame walk, a track where we, mere broken humans, have the potential to not only shake our relationships, but our community, nation, and the world at large, for the glory of God’s kingdom.
The most popular name in America right now is that of Tim Tebow. With the billion and one articles and opinions that have been spread about the Denver Broncos quarterback in the last few months, I thought I would add my two cents to the pot.
However, I don’t want to talk about Tim Tebow the athlete, or Tim Tebow the person, or even give my opinions on Tim Tebow’s faith. Rather, I want to use Tim Tebow as the headliner to highlight a fasting moving trend that has been bubbling under the surface of our culture for the past few months.
They say that no press is bad press. And Tim Tebow has had more than his fair share the past few months. And when Tim Tebow is in the news, you can probably bet that the name of God will be close by. Because of Tim Tebow’s relentlessness in sharing his faith at any opportunity he receives, especially in front of millions of viewers, God’s name has been all over the media these past few months. And whether this news is good, bad, or something in between, Tim Tebow is starting a movment.
Every time after a game when Tebow thanks his Lord and Savior, he is making it more and more acceptable for Christian athletes, and Christian celebrities at large, to express their faith openly in our ever growing secular culture. And in the past year, Tebow has not been the only one bringing God into the press.
In the early stages of the upcoming election, the number one blaring issue to most voters thus far, has been the religious faith of candidates such as Michelle Bachmann and Mitt Romney. And while Bachmann is no longer in the race, her presence and openness about her faith, whether you agree with it or not, has gotten people talking more and more about things not of this world. And with the fast growing demographic of politically active, twenty-something Christians, in 2012 the ‘Christian vote’ will be more important then it’s ever been before.
Elsewhere in the country, The Book of Mormon has been the hottest show on Broadway for the last year and a half. And while the show does not paint the most positive picture of the Mormon faith, it has gotten God’s name into the theatre and paved the way for revivals of such shows as Godspell and Jesus Christ Superstar. Shows like this, whether they are theologically correct or not, bring the faith conversation to over five thousands audience members a week in the heart of New York City.
There is no denying it, God is in the media, and it has all the signs of the beginning of a movement. And Tim Tebow is now it’s unofficial leader. All it takes is one person using their voice, to inspire other people to begin using theirs. The more these people and their professions of faith are trending, the more curious people will become, and all it takes is a little curiousity to get people to begin digging into the things of God. Because when God’s on television, then God’s in our homes, and when God’s in our homes, then we have a much better chance of being in our hearts. Thus, I would like to purpose a new definition, or an expanded one, of the term Tebowing.
Tebowing: Relentlessly and unapologetically using your platform to expand God’s kingdom.
Tebow is doing this on a national scale, and don’t be surprised if you begin to see more and more people start coming out of the woodwork talking about their faith on national television. Don’t be surprised when you begin to see more and more voices calling out in the desert. We only needed someone to prepare the way so we can begin to prepare His way.
So is it a good thing that there is all this media talk about faith and religion? I don’t know if there is a right answer to that question. But this we do know, that when people are talking, God will use that talk, positive or negative, to bring glory to his name, and people to his heart.
Last night I attended an event/concert benefitting for the drought in Africa, put on by an organization called Afrocka. After walking through the lobby, and seeing their displays, and listening to a few songs, I was nearly brought to my knees. Instead, I decided just to sit down, and I began to pray and thank God for this opportunity to see my vision come to life.
Now Afrocka was not my idea, nor do I have anything to do with the organization other than being a now avid supporter. But the Afrocka team and I have a shared vision. A vision that art and creativity can mobilize a community to do more then just listen to music and scream and dance. That art, when it is centered on the Lord and serving his people, can be an amazing venue to bring positive change to the world.
The theme for Afrocka this year was Hope. And last night, as I left the event I was filled with new hope that not only was my dream important and could come true, but that there were others out there who believe the same thing I do, that creativity mixed with a servants heart, moves mountains, and ends droughts.
In light of my new inspiration, God really spoke to my heart in the car ride home last night, so I brought out my phone and started writing. This was all that came out....
This blog is about learning how to notice, make, and share your art