Repentance, turning around, growing, maturing, taking on new ideas, new journeys, new ventures, what do they all have in common. There is a thread that fixes these and other images.jpegchallenges of living together, it is called CHANGE. If we are to move forward and live our Christian life to the full we must be able to embrace change, knowing it is imperative for us to understand the full elements of change. Change brings about insecurity, emotionally. I like the picture from the sporting world in the area of boxing; the unstable time for a boxer is when the boxer changes their stance it is an unstable moment; change brings instability, which we have to negotiate. The church asks for change but very rarely helps us in the instability and emotional challenge of the change. Wise people understand that lasting change requires them as individuals to change first before anything around them will change, in the same way influencers or leaders know if they change that which they are responsible for in their stewardship of people or organizations will also change.

Your change won’t last, or disrupt your community, unless those around you personally embrace the change first, at least at some level. Let us try to understand why most people initially resist change.

There are processes that must be engaged in to bring and complete any change, often these are actions and thought patterns that are hidden. If we are to be Gods Change agents it is necessary that we become aware of our minds and people’s thinking. As we become more people aware we can devise ways of helping lasting change.

Here are some change blockers, hindrances we will have to deal with:

Assume the worst. We are wired to pick up threats and negative possibilities around us more than the positive. Before you say “I’m not like that”, 2/3’s of the brain cells are in the flight-fight part of our brain, the amygdala, are wired to pick up on the negative (Hanson, 2010). Generally people’s initial response to change comes from these emotional centers rather than from their thinking centers.

Knowledge gaps fill with fear instead of faith. The insecurity and instability about change does cultivate fear. The less information that people have to fill in the knowledge gaps, the greater the fear, which in turn brings about resistance to any change.

No second chances to make a good first impression. Neuroscientists have shown it to be true (Lount et al., 2008). Poorly introduced change will always start your change on the wrong footing.

Change is emotional. Just presenting facts without engaging positive and hopeful emotions will seldom move your forward. A large number of people make decisions based on emotion.

I can’t handle it. Trying to create too much change too quickly can engage the brain’s fear center and cause people to resist, thus hindering change (Hemp, 2009).

“Old habits die-hard” We all have a tendency to return to where we have been or what we have known, they say, as we get older we default quicker to what we know. How easy is it for us to think about other options. We have set up habits and it’s a tug-of-war between the familiar and easy

The nearer the change the more resistant we become. Peoples’ response to change, changes over time. Introduce a change a year ahead and initially the benefits are seen, the options look good. The negatives such as more work, recruiting more people more time needed don’t seem very large at that point. Neuroscientists have discovered that when the change is far away, the positives usually outweigh the negatives (Löw et al., 2008). However, the closer we think about the implications and the personal cost. Uninformed optimism gives way to informed pessimism.

Change is interpreted as a threat. We are told the brain is organized around a fundamental principle—minimize threat-maximize reward—that results in either resistance or openness. Change perceived as a threat produces resistance. Change brings uncertainty and we don’t like it, well our brain does not like it.

when ever change is presented keep these insights in mind so you can work out a plan to Unknownovercome them.

The bible quotes “who builds a house without first counting the cost” the counting the cost is not to prevent but to be realistic in the demands that will be put upon us, Abraham “counted his body as good as dead yet believed God” when the promise of a son was made. That is, he saw the impossibility, the change at the age he and Sarah was, yet believed a promise, believed God, a God word over the negative emotions of “you cannot be serious”.

We are to “set our eyes on the Christ”’ Paul encouraged us to forget what has happened and press on through to the gain. There is something so strong in seeing what God has said in all our change and holding on when the insecurity of the change comes.

Find a friend in time of need, that when we are in that place find others who are not in their negative but who have worked through the change and talk, tell of your patterns of thought and walk together learning from others who have changed and are changing.

FUNDAMENTALLY DEVELOP A CULTURE OF CHANGE, readiness to change and a willingness to constantly embrace change, some times keep flexible in making changes in your life to keep change alive, change room layouts, move your desk, change decoration, change your habit patterns, change eating try something new, try something uncommon to you, do something that demands you to say ‘I don’t know how to do this’ or ‘what I am doing’, find a new sport all these and other ways of cultivating change help us to be change agents first to us then to those we touch.

Questions to ponder:

What have you seen in others that make them averse to change?

Who around me deals well with change?

How can I make the benefits of change be big in mind and experience constantly?

How can I build a reason for change that out weights the insecurity and instability I will feel, CHANGE is part of life, it is maturing, growing up and older it will not go away it will knock on the door of your life daily, LEARN TO EMBRACE IT.

Language of Christ

Face2Face - Gareth Duffty Blog

Unknown.pngWhat is the Gospel?   What are we to say?   Are we do do anything ? Jesus said in John 6:29 Jesus answered and said to them, “This is the work of God, that you believe in Him whom God has sent.”  What response do we have to this statement and its even in red…

Our world is filled with ways to gain and programmes to bring advance, Facebook repeated “if you do this” success, money, fame, position.   Unfortunately have we created the same expectancy to provide these programs & ways of achievements within the people of God.   It looks as if we more and more we do all we can to draw people by systems, designed programme, attempting to do Gods work?

Behaviours are adjusted, programmes to align our actions, disciplines to bring people to what we think  is spiritual, mechanisms, systems and structures to…

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Language of Christ

Unknown.pngWhat is the Gospel?   What are we to say?   Are we do do anything ? Jesus said in John 6:29 Jesus answered and said to them, “This is the work of God, that you believe in Him whom God has sent.”  What response do we have to this statement and its even in red…

Our world is filled with ways to gain and programmes to bring advance, Facebook repeated “if you do this” success, money, fame, position.   Unfortunately have we created the same expectancy to provide these programs & ways of achievements within the people of God.   It looks as if we more and more we do all we can to draw people by systems, designed programme, attempting to do Gods work?

Behaviours are adjusted, programmes to align our actions, disciplines to bring people to what we think  is spiritual, mechanisms, systems and structures to do what only God can and will do.

Our gospel given freely, invested with power and Holy Spirit dynamic to avoid us in produce or ending up with only understanding, better marriages, children, moral status along with good attendance.     Pragmatism has been driving our outreach or outflow rather that the power of the gospel and the Christ.   Sometimes the numbers game makes us hunt for a product, a programme, a process that will reward us with a better rate of conversion.   Yet I am sure you agree only Jesus can do all this, we can gather numbers but only Jesus, the Lord Jesus Christ can bring about spiritual birth.

To put more faith in my program, my church ways, than the Christ, is it not legalism, or religion, a religion that so distances God when I can only gain my Christ likeness through the programme, ’new birth’?

My appeal today is to centre again on Jesus and the Power of the Holy Spirit , the Power of the Gospel.    Any other gospel cannot be the gospel, it therefore must be another we uphold.     Let us hold on to Christ, for we will lose too much otherwise, the danger of losing everything that is important – Jesus.  Paul wrote “I, Paul, say to you that if you receive circumcision, Christ will be of no benefit to you.  And I testify again to every man who receives circumcision, that he is under obligation to keep the whole Law.    You have been severed from Christ, you who are seeking to be justified by law; you have fallen from grace”.
Christ being the central importance not our legal or religious patterns, our church advance, our programmes to gain but Christ.   To lose Christ is to put aside faith working as an expression of love.    If this gospel of love, this gospel of grace is insufficient and we need our behaviour changing programs our legating patterns we have a meaningless expression.

What is the Gospel?   What is the real thing?   What is Gods’ mandate and purpose?

I encourage you to let your imaginations soar on what the goodness, the love that is only possible by God.    The writer to Romans said that “nothing can separate us from the love of God”, this is  only seen as we allow our imagination of  God to go beyond our experience to date of love amongst people, as we God beyond a “church” devise that is only gathered and built through human ways.

It was not so long ago we sat with a scholarly bible teacher who spoke to us of ‘dumbing down’ a divine pattern of relationship – covenant to friendship in an attempt to fit into todays vocabulary and world.     I wonder if we are aware that perhaps that we are doing the same in regards to love?   Could it be that the love preached, sung about is so reduced that is not attractive any longer, that there are more loving communities around, more groups that show the gospel via love in unconditional sharing but have not been born of the Spirit.    That the unconditional love shown to you and me by our God, the love that is fully accepting has been filters that when it flows from us it might even repel?

I am a simpleton I believe what Christ has done is more than enough to transform people in every way, Christ is all.       This Gospel of Love, this Gospel of Transformation, this Gospel of UNON with God is the only way forward, a faith full of love.

images.jpegRecently I found God asking me a question regarding the statement of Genesis 1 “Let there be Light”, if language had not been created at that time what and how did God say anything, it certainly was not english or hebrew, then I recalled God has spoken in the Son (Hebrews 1) and that Jesus said he was the “light of the world” , “Let there be light” the language of God of Genesis 1 is Chirst  and the vocabulary being love.

This Love makes faith, my Christain ways are nothing if its void of love. Therefore are the communities we being to, a belong we must, motivated and moved working out all things in love.    O God do not let our doings, our proclamations, our whys and reason of being lack this vocabulary of the language of Christ LOVE.    Love will bring about a fresh discovery of all we are in authenticity, being spiritual through love and not nearly actuation a set of rules of a great moral standard never mind how helpful this might be its authentic love lives.     With out love fully expressed is a love that is so dreadful, a love freely given a love ready to forgive before any action is done against you, a love that is poured out and and poured out again when we think we have nothing remaining, love that is fully accepting never mind the condition.   This is a Gospel and Christianity fully imbibed with Christ, the light an love of “Let there be”.

Prophetic Passion hold on to it!

Unknown.jpegHere are some interesting insights that might be applicable to the moment you and I are living in, with the placings wherein God has set us. Take your imagination and visit Samuel’s young life, having been left by his mother in the service of his God and learning what it is to be 1st given to God whilst being skilled in an environment less than suitable for a young child. Having been trained to hear God amongst a priesthood had forgotten or chosen to forget how to hear God. Young Samuel is experiencing quite a challenging environment as he seeks to faithfully serve God in the between time the zone of moving form to another time.

He had to deal with:

The perplexing paradox of Eli
Incredible patience of God with the corrupt priesthood
Everything in Samuel’s Heart responded to Eli’s righteous exhortations, whereas nothing in him corresponded to Hophni or Phinehas’s lifestyle
The challenge of maintaining sensitivity to the voice of God
His deepening pain over what he was hearing from God and yet what he saw
The growing awareness that God would not allow the situation forever
The inner grief knowing that God would remove Eli as well as his sons
He did not try to do God’s job for him but held to the function God had given him to do, that is he surveyed, just like on the Lord in the temple
There is no reference to Samuel’s involvement in the loss of the Ark of the Lord to the Philistines, nor its return to Israel. The opening words showed he was ready for the moment; he recognised a signal from heaven to initiate a dramatic change in the nation “…if you are really serious…” 1 Sam. 7:3 (NLB)
Despite the spiritual darkness of his time, being trained as it was to a failing Eli, yet Samuel’s heart burned with passion and for God.
He kept faith in the covenant promises, the covenant purpose of God for the generation in which he lived and breathed

He was sustained by a continuing prophetic revelation of God which kept the little flame burning in his heart “the Lord appeared again at Shiloh, because the Lord revealed himself…by the word of the Lord. Thus the word of Samuel came to all” 1 Sam. 3:21-4:1

Now the Lord not had a word for Samuel, if Samuel did not have a word Israel would not have been provide a word.

When the prophetic word comes:

It provokes change in attitude
It focuses the purpose of God so that you do not fall victim to forces that would love you to deviate from the Divine Purpose
It carries with it the wisdom essential to your establishing the gains already made, while propelling you forward to secure new gains, this is wonderfully pictured in Nehemiah when he is urging the people have sword and trowel in hand. A picture that showed to protect themselves what had been accomplished while working out what they were building.
It comes with passion and conviction as it is known as God speaking
In our day let us cultivate, create and be the sustainers of the prophetic passion, let us be those that work with what God has spoken, let us be those that take up the ultimate purpose and will of the father and make this ours. Let us avoid Christianity deteriorating into a competitive scramble by small-minded people trying to get more and more people to rally to a cause as opposed to working in harmony to the advance of the kingdom, disciplining the people, pursuing being united with God and keeping peace in the community of God, the church in the bonds of peace.

A ‘must’…add to yourself.

I 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, images.jpegwilling 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 how deka this impact me… If we are to serve effectively we must sharpen, develop, hone our skills and ourselves, it really is a desperate requirement for you and me.

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.

Hone 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.

Hone 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…