lifeboat? Get out while you can

Kingdom Principle:  Love is Power.  God communicates Love.

Kingdom Servants will hear the voice of God or learn God’s sign-language.

Acts 11:1-18 Psalm 148 Revelation 21:1-6 John 13:31-35

Unfortunately many in the Christian church live with a lifeboat mentality. In this way of thinking; one looks around and sees the “signs” that the world is quickly sinking into a hellish and repulsive state. Since they believe that doing anything about it futile, they separate themselves from the “world” before they go down with the ship.  It is time we re-ignite a Love Boat mentality.  (not the one of the early 80’s) but the one where the world knows that we are Christians (followers of Jesus) by our Love. Those who see the signs as more than suffering have learned to understand God’s sign-language, others simply wander in fear. The reason I believe that God communicates mainly using sign-language is because we are generally deaf.  Bob Goff author of Love Does: Discover a Secretly Incredible Life in an Ordinary World says it this way, “I used to think God wouldn’t talk to me, but now I know I’m just selective with what I choose to hear.”  God is constantly communicating with His Kingdom. This communication is powerful, and it is Love.  Last week’s post highlights that Authority is the key to yielding, direction and moving in power, and Authority comes from knowing the Father’s voice.  “But the kind of love that God created and demonstrated is a costly one because it involves sacrifice and presence. It’s a love that operates more like a sign language than being spoken outright.” What to hear more from Bob Goff – click here Love Does .

Authority is grown and matured in relationship, while Power is given and expressed as a gift. (Mark 5:30, John 19:10-11, & throughout the Book of Revelation power is seen as being given) Authority initiates healing and Power is foundational to Miracles. C.S. Lewis argues that while a Miracle is improbable the fact that it takes place does not need to render it incredible… this argument is based in the fact that God is supernatural and it is His natural way of communicating with his creation. It is not incredible from God’s perspective to send Jesus to the world to die for our sin, and to raise him from the grave – it is an act of Love which is altogether a very expected act of God. While this act seems improbable to us, that is only due to the fact that we remain at a distance from God, all the while He summons us to be intimate with him.  God is Love and He cannot act without the action being love and powerful. When this love flows through us we experience an increase in authority and power. Because of this increase we can proclaim ATHOE part 2: Circumcise, Renew and Resurrect. ATHOE Part 1:Confess, Release and Command are acts of Authority, part 2 is a movement of power.

Where Healing is marked by the removal of darkness; Miracles restore and recreate the present reality which has been destroyed by the darkness. Healing is often overlooked and missed because we were looking for a miracle, while miracles are dismissed and rationalized away.  The problem is not in a lack of God’s work or a of lack our faith – rather it is in an abundance of noise and choas. It is as if you are trying to have a personal conversation while a fire truck drives by or a helicopter flies over head, we cannot simple hear what is being said. In this way, there is a resounding gong or clanging cymbal drowning the out the voice of God in our lives. (1 Cor 13) God’s voice and movement is love and it is powerful. The more we dwell with God, the more we are aligned with His purpose in our lives, the more we hear His voice. Since the noise and chaos (siren & noise) is getting louder, we must learn sign-language. Not just sign-language to simply hear god, but sign-language to demonstrate God’s love. This is our call to do good work and to love our neighbor. This type of living removes the desire to escape in a life-boat – rather we take on an improbable act and demonstrate the joy of the Love boat amongst as dark and dying world as an everyday experience.

This week we see Jesus telling the disciples of new commandment – Love One Another – Yet it is not so new (Lev. 19:18, 19:34) it had simply been lost amongst the “noise”.  Jesus is calling for love not of obligation or even religion, rather to be one of demonstration and relationship.  This demonstration much like a miracle is not supposed to be incredible much less improbable; it is to be an everyday conversation.  Further last week we also brought to light that the enemy has not lost their power. (Luke 10:19, Acts 10:38, 26:18, Romans 3:9, Eph. 6:12, 2 Thess. 2:7, Hebrews 2:14) So there are two expressions of power – The pure source of power which is Love, (Mark 9:1, Luke 1:35, Acts 1:8, 1 Cor. 1:24, 4:20, 2 Cor. 13:4, Col. 1:16, 2:10)  and the corrupted expression of power which is anything less than love.  If the enemy was not hell-bent on deception, this would not be a problem, but the enemy loves to masquerade and deceive us into thinking that we are moving in love, when it is actually less than love.

In the same way, it may not be so clear if we are living with a life-boat or love-boat perspective to the world. If you struggle to love those who are hard to love – it may simply be a lack of power… not faith or authority. You need a power boost! You need a re-charge of your Love bank.

We all have come to grips with the tangible need for a power source. We have accepted the fact that technology (especially smart phones) must be re-charged daily. But we struggle to accept that we must be “re-charged” daily. (this applies body, soul & spirit) It is this reason that Jesus teaches us to pray for our daily bread, not because God is limited, but rather, because we are – we can only contain so much of God’s power at any one time… and we must return to him in dependence daily.  And thus – Power is a gift, and when we are fully charged, we are a gift of love to those around us. Peter had no intention to love Cornelius the way he ended up doing so – but God spoke and Peter heard and saw the signs, then had the power to overcome the tradition, social, religious and Jewish expectations that still were rooted in his life.

Close with a Question: Do you have the power to save another’s life?

Assuming you can reach the person and will not fall victim yourself….

  • Do you have the power to save a drowning victim if they are 500 miles away?
  • Do you have the power to save a drowning victim if they are 50 miles away?
  • Do you have the power to save a drowning victim if they are 5 miles away?
  • Do you have the power to save a drowning victim if they are 5 feet away?

Our answer is usually dependent on proximity, rather than power… Now let’s intentionally shift our proximity to be with God – this is called intimacy.  As God grants you the power – how do the answers to the questions change? If proximity is limiting you from loving others – you may without knowing have found your seat in a life-boat verses the Love Boat.

About chaplaincasey

In my Community I am a Chaplain, Coach and Catalyst.
This entry was posted in Easter, Year C and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

2 Responses to lifeboat? Get out while you can

  1. Pingback: Busy-bees miss the honey | confrontingchaos

  2. Pingback: To understand, stand under… | confrontingchaos

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