I’m a student of many things these days, not only comedy, teaching and speaking, but writing as well. When I attended Speak Up Communications Seminar in Grand Rapids Michigan this past summer, I learned a lot of things about aim, rapport steps, transitions, and how to make a point in three minutes. Actually, what I learned was I’m a bit on the over achiever-try-too-hard edge where making one point in three minutes isn’t so hard, it’s the 20 extra that I try to cram in that gets me in trouble.
I also learned how to trust God through all of the shaking, doubting, and questionings. The “are you sure God?” doubts and fears. yes, he’s sure, and so he kept telling me every step of the way. Just be willing to learn. I’m still learning, I’m still willing, and I’m still trying.
I want to get better. In order to get better, I have to be out there, and willing to either strike the ball or strike out. But I have to be on deck for a chance at both.
My prayer journal on Matthew 23 is no different. There are many things I believe God showed me, but getting to those points? I’m over achieving in my blogs and not making sense. So.. if I were to make a basic outline, where would I begin?
I’ll find the aim, the point, and the message in time. But rather than slaughter it on my blog, I’ll leave with you with these points for now.
1. – My cup was full of distractions and disguises (Hypocrite is from the Greek – an actor in a play who wears masks.)
2. Therefore (as an adult convert) it should be no surprise that after Christ’s triumphal entry into my life that he would restore the temple (my heart) to a house of prayer.
3. It really helps if you believe his conversion, moving in, is permanent and not a live in lover temporary until you mess up kind of deal like I did.
4. There will be those who sit at the seat of moses, LISTEN TO THEM, just don’t copy them.
5. Don’t confuse Christ with a Pharisee – he won’t add to your burdens and do nothing to help carry the weight.
6. Set up no one as judge over your (my) life. There is only one Christ and it’s not them.
7. If your going to teach (speak, preach, lead, whatever) – do it as a fellow traveler – do not sit at the seat of Moses as Judge or Lord over anyone else.
8. Pay attention to the bones, be yourself, follow Christ,
9 – Don’t argue with a pharisee – but don’t forget that even Christ longed to gather them in his arms like a hen gathers her chicks. He wept over them as well.
10 – Psalm 103:12 “as far as the east is from the west,
so far has he removed our transgressions from us.”
Ponder this with me – one who redeems the life from the pit (vs 4) and crowns us with love and compassion says this about our sin “as far as the east is from the west, so far has he removed our transgressions from us.”
Do you know what that means? Can you picture this?
Look out your window – and think, if you or I were to walk out our front door and start walking Straight north, sooner or later we would come to the north pole. Right? What happens when we keep walking? Do we keep heading North? no. We start heading south.
If you (or I) were to walk out our front door and start walking East – we will circle the globe and never walk west. THAT’s how far God has removed our transgressions from us.
No dirty cup,
No need for fillers
No need to be a copy cat
or sit in the seat of moses.
Just grace. From the one who knew us first, and knows us best.
I’m still over explaining, I know. but you know what? I’m not going to quit learning how to find my aim and make my points. I’m not going to quit trying to teach, to speak, to laugh, or to sing. Because he has set a new song in my heart that cannot be silenced.
1 Praise the LORD, O my soul;
all my inmost being, praise his holy name.
2 Praise the LORD, O my soul,
and forget not all his benefits-
3 who forgives all your sins
and heals all your diseases,
4 who redeems your life from the pit
and crowns you with love and compassion,
5 who satisfies your desires with good things
so that your youth is renewed like the eagle’s.
6 The LORD works righteousness
and justice for all the oppressed.
7 He made known his ways to Moses,
his deeds to the people of Israel:
8 The LORD is compassionate and gracious,
slow to anger, abounding in love.
9 He will not always accuse,
nor will he harbor his anger forever;
10 he does not treat us as our sins deserve
or repay us according to our iniquities.
11 For as high as the heavens are above the earth,
so great is his love for those who fear him;
12 as far as the east is from the west,
so far has he removed our transgressions from us.
13 As a father has compassion on his children,
so the LORD has compassion on those who fear him;
14 for he knows how we are formed,
he remembers that we are dust.
15 As for man, his days are like grass,
he flourishes like a flower of the field;
16 the wind blows over it and it is gone,
and its place remembers it no more.
17 But from everlasting to everlasting
the LORD’s love is with those who fear him,
and his righteousness with their children’s children-
18 with those who keep his covenant
and remember to obey his precepts.
19 The LORD has established his throne in heaven,
and his kingdom rules over all.
20 Praise the LORD, you his angels,
you mighty ones who do his bidding,
who obey his word.
21 Praise the LORD, all his heavenly hosts,
you his servants who do his will.
22 Praise the LORD, all his works
everywhere in his dominion.
Praise the LORD, O my soul.