Kissing honestly – a Kingdom of God reality.

An Honest answer is like a Kiss on the lips – Kiss of friendship

Proverbs 24:26

imagesI am amazed and shocked how much influence a man can wield…   our TV has been dominated in recent years with talent shows and competitions for all types of people and animals.   Dog trainers, singers, puppeteer, acrobats, martial arts, dancers, individuals and groups alike, all trying their best, programs such as  “….got talent”, “X factor”, “The Voice”, “Idol”, the population that view seem to be oblivious to the program’s design, its aim to be exposing of the unfortunate through flattery, its staging what will be done to get viewing figures, the ridicules along with the talented in a world where we have no failures where we are not to allow any one to fail at anything. 

The voice of one man, one judge is sought on the UK and USA programs, the opinion of the daddy of talent programs Simon Cowell, a judge, it is what all take interest in receiving.   Yet he has acquired a reputation for his severe criticism of the pop-star hopefuls, talent displays. “My attitude has always been, ‘Don’t lie to people,’” Simon says. “Kids turn up unrehearsed, wearing the wrong clothes, singing out of tune, and you can either say, ‘Good job,’ and patronize them or tell them the truth, and sometimes the truth is perceived as mean.”

The real question is, why do people even show up?

Even the untrained ear can discern that many of them can’t sing. Yet they believe with miraculous sincerity that they can make it big. What has happened here?

Someone lied. In an attempt to encourage, a parent or friend or significant other told the hopeful singer that he had the right stuff. In the name of love, someone told him that he should make a CD. Out of a desire to protect the self-image of a young person, someone lied.

Cowell acknowledges that part of his job is to close that gap: “For a lot of contestants, it’s a suspension of belief. Your family and friends say you’re pretty good—and we’re here to stop you.”

 

Before you made a fool of yourself, wouldn’t you want to be stopped? As hard as it may be to hear the truth, as difficult as it may be to accept it, wouldn’t it be more loving and kind if someone said, gently and firmly, “Don’t do this. It’s not good. I like you. I love you. But you’re not a pop star”?

Of course it would. But we’ve lost the ability to tell the truth when the truth is hard.

Proverbs 24:26 says “An honest answer is like a kiss on the lips,”  it’s not an honest answer is like a slap on the face. A kiss is something to look forward to…but honesty?

How can these two be similar?

How is a kiss comparable to an honest answer?

A kiss honours relationship.

A kiss brings us close to another and builds relationship.

Risking this type of kiss, we honour one another and our relationships.

Moses’ father-in-law, Jethro, took a big risk when he told Moses that he was taking on too much responsibility by acting as arbiter of all disputes for the people of Israel: “What you are doing is not good!” (Ex. 18:17 ).   Moses, who was not known for his patience when confronted with the truth, could easily have rejected this advice—and the advisor. However, “Moses listened to his father-in-law and did everything he said” (v. 24 ).

How many times has your wife or husband come to you honestly “I’m upset…” your children turn and say “I don’t like that…”   Often we are not excited to be told the truth about ourselves, especially when it’s contrary to our perception

We could save ourselves much hassle by letting things go.    But some times we bravely take on the task of truth telling for my sake and for the sake of better relationships in our family. Proverbs 24:3-4 says, “By wisdom a house is built, and through understanding it is established; through knowledge its rooms are filled with rare and beautiful treasures.”

    Telling the truth is interior decoration for another’s character. The risk—and the relationship—is worth it.

More thoughts on these kisses next time

Do I have a theme song – what is Gods song?

images-7As we walk our faiths journey becoming more and more like the Christ of God, we find, on occasions, that the precise quality of our faith and journey are difficult to determine.   Many of our experiences are subjective and therefore difficult to pass on to others, as they pertain to my own personal walk,  we can even create a sense of lack in others if they are led to feel unable to enter into these experiences that our worlds are often filled with.

However we have many life stories and recording of experiences of men and women, who have displayed their closeness to the Father which in no doubt become a provocation on our journeys.

Our lives must have these signs and helps to those who w ear still to encourage in their walk towards God.    One of these constant experiences outlined by the saints gone by,  is to sing of mercy and to be redesigned by judgments, these to would appear to most Christians a suitable expression of their feelings.   David seems to express in a review of his life that both mercy and judgements are proper grounds for praise and thanksgiving, along with the determination given by the Holy Spirit  to praise God for them.

Psalm 101:1 has in its opening lines this declaration “My theme song is God’s love and justice… this  started me thinking down a number of avenues, the first being, what is my theme song?

is it of the Fathers love, the magnificent justice of a creator that has the ability to rule in my life?

A theme in my view captures a life, it sums up a whole life, it’s the overarching bias and constant experience of a life.   I wonder what theme my life has caught or is under girded with?

The phrase theme song or may be, more popularly said, a signature tune may be used to refer to a song that has become especially associated with a particular performer or dignitary; often used as they make an entrance. Examples of this association include: the President of the United States with “Hail to the Chief”; the Queen with our national anthem, a song or tune directly associated with a person.   The purpose of the music is to connect a person with some truth, aspect of their lives or their status in life then.  It  is also used to establish a mood for an event or show.   In terms of a show I it provides an audible cue that a particular show is beginning, the lyrics of the theme song provide some necessary exposition for people unfamiliar with the show or event.

So what is your theme song?    What does your life sing of?    What song will be associated to you and used to herald your entrance.   Will it be a positive of negative theme, are we those who are looking to communicate the great love of God, or the challenge of the walk, being near to depression with  the weight of responsibility?    What theme proceeds us as we enter a room, live life, is there a running and hiding from us?  a people saying o here comes pressure?   On the other hand it could be such a theme of overwhelming joy that all want to be in your company, for the theme to rub off?    The mood we create by the theme of our inner life?

Before you go away thinking well I do not create a mood, I wanted this simple opening stanza to assist us in realising how we can change the theme of our song, to create an opening and heralding an arrival that all would wish to create.    Rather than give up, consider what your inner life dwells upon.

“My theme song is God’s love and justice the song that I should take hold of inside and allow to be the song that precedes me, is the love of God,  being overwhelmed,  revelling in his love for me, never mind how unlovely I see me, He loves me unreservedly.   This is the beginning of the rewriting of my inner theme, allowing  the nature and theme of God’s Love and justice to be my constant thought of him.

The dealings of the Father with us as his people, display the wisdom and goodness of God.

Consider the mix of these two foundations for a theme song, love and justice, mercy and judgments.   Mercies, if unmixed, would “exalt us above measure;” and judgments, if unmixed, would sink us into despondency. A ship needs both sails and ballast, to carry it forward in safety: and so the Christian needs a diversity, in order to accomplish in them the purposes of God’s grace. God sends them to his people to

–       Form them into the divine image. So that the perfection of a Christian consists not in one grace, or even in one set of graces, but in a combination of all the graces which are suited to a redeemed soul, and calculated to advance the honour of our God.

–       Stimulate them on their way to glory.    Mercies have a tendency to fill the soul with love to God, and to make it pant for the full enjoyment of God in heaven. Judgments also operate to the same end, by weaning the soul from present things, and causing it to long for that rest which is in Christ

The saints in every age have acknowledged the goodness of God in them

Now let me ask again “What theme song do you have?”    Bathe your mind and heart in his love and mercy revel in his judgments and justice so that our theme can be as one song sung in heaven!

Self – Sharpening…

images-7I wonder if  there is any one on the planet that has not heard of Nelson Mandela, if you had not known much of him and where near world media along with following the recent events in South Africa, the cerebration of his life and the “world funeral”.   He was a man who became a principled man, willing to allow his own desires and emotions to be adjusted by the principles he held, willing to live and die for an ideal. Through this he has impacted millions of people across our  world.   One value he encouraged and by all accounts practised diligently each day while imprisoned on Robbin Island and continued following his release, which actually explains something about him.   He longed that ever man and woman would self examine for 15 mins each day, considering how they forgave, how they spoke to others, how they loved, etc., a self-examination people in order that our world would be a better place.

Now let me take that though and extend it to our blog.   If we  are to serve effectively we must sharpen ourselves diligently.

Look at yourself – your mental abilities, emotional responses, character qualities, attitudes and skills.   determine to sharpen every aspect to become productive in either redeeming or influencing mankind.

Sharpen your emotions to respond adequately to the working of God in your human experiences.   Be a thanks-giver, not just a thanks feeler.   Train emotions so that when God is excited you are too, when God is at rest you are at rest.

Develop your powers of discernment.  learn to differentiate between the important and the unimportant, the open door and the close door, the door to push and the door to stop pushing.

Sharpen your mind by reading, study, learning and questioning.   Surround yourself with sharp-thinking people.   Get with sharp people, because sharp people will keep you sharp.   Sharp people will not agree with you all the time.   If you only love the people who are agreeing with you, it is only yourself you are loving.   Get with people who get you thinking ‘that is a good thought’, and that it did not come from you.   Get with people who can add to you.   You share the best revelation and they top it…

i can learn from people who see more than me.     Get with sharp people.   Don’t get with those that are gossiping, backbiting or pulling down, or even tell you they or you can do better that those around.   Don’t get with miseries and especially meanes, not with pessimists, get with faithful men and women, those who talk faith and know what it is to be involved with the Work of faith, those who stir faith who loves people, loves God, is reaching towards people.   that is where we want to go Hebrews 10:24, 25

Know when to switch off the computer, TV, Xbox…   Keep sharp by praying in the Holy Spirit.   Abide in the word of God, dig deep in the word, see things that you have not seen before, buy a markable bible, mark, mark, mark until the word is sharp in you John 8:31, John 14:23, John 15:7, Col 3:16

Perform good works.    Good works are full of faith and love.   Look for opportunities to do good Hebrews 10:24, Ephesians 2:10

Link up with apostles, prophets and let them know your fields of expertise Ephesians 4:11-13, Ephesians 2:19,20

Next whatever you are in already, if you are convinced that is where you should be as a sphere of influence, next step is then to establish yourself in it, succeed in it and excel.   Do not settle for mediocrity 1 Cor. 10:31.

Speak confidently to yourself saying I believe God has placed me here, I will establish myself, hone my skills until I excel and gain the high ground of influence.   In order that we become a people on the cutting edge to our life and story.   A radical people.   A people deeply conscious of our heritage and our destiny.   A people bent on discipling the nations. A people ready to meet the challenge of our times and change the world, we are not born to journey through a trackless wilderness in life.   We are to follow the Spirits directions the steps of a journey of faith towards the destiny of the Father as we do the will of God.  We are intended to impact our age and world en route…