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God often challenges us to become or do something that is impossible.  For some, that is simply making it through one more day.  I have a friend who is paralyzed from the waist down.  Facing the day with thanksgiving and joy are not automatics for anyone in that situation.

How does he do it?  He does not wake up considering the challenges that face him, whether he is capable of overcoming them.  He simply chooses to get up.

When God calls us to do or become something impossible, we often deceive ourselves by focusing on the difficulty of the doing or becoming.  In these moments, we must remind ourselves that God is working in us to will and do to His good pleasure (Philippians 2:13).  He is able to do exceedingly abundantly above all that we can ask or think (Ephesians 3:20).

The doing and making are God’s business.  Our sole responsibility is the choice of participation.  Oh, but our minds, they do like to play tricks on us.  Rather than face the difficult choice, we contemplate the impossibility of the doing or becoming.  Consequently, we are often distracted from the great things God would do in and through us.

Don’t let that be you.  Don’t fall for the deception.

Commit your way to the Lord,
Trust also in Him,
And He shall bring it to pass.
Psalm 37:5

God bless you with focus on the choice.

Humbly yours and forever His,

Rob

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In Process for Planning, we discovered that God does not have an x-step plan for guaranteed success. His plans for His children are dynamic, and unpredictable. There are two ways to learn this.

The first way to respond to God’s dynamic nature in planning is to resist, self-manage and control. My experience tells me that He allows us to pursue this approach; knowing, one day, that we will get tired, look up, and realize we are not making much progress.

The second response is to trust and follow. As we recognized in our last article on this subject, Jesus said, “Follow me and I will make you…”. That is what we are here for: To be made fit for God’s call to more. As so, we come to the matter of our transformation.

But we all, with unveiled face, beholding as in a mirror the glory of the Lord, are being transformed into the same image from glory to glory, just as by the Spirit of the Lord. 2Corinthians 3:18

You can find a number of articles on this subject by searching for “transform” on the inLight Adventure blog site. It is my favorite topic. Metamorphoo is my favorite Greek word!

For now, let me highlight a few key points, regarding Jesus’ method for our making, which will help you cooperate in the work.

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Commit your way to the Lord,
Trust also in Him,
And He shall bring it to pass.

He shall bring forth your righteousness as the light,
And your justice as the noonday.
Psalm 37:5-6

One of the tricks our mind tries to play on us is the interpretation of Scripture to meet its preferences, and prejudices. This is perfectly normal… for the carnal mind.

But, we have the mind of Christ. We are empowered and responsible to think differently.

Consider Psalm 37:5-6. My carnal mind would prefer “commit your way to the LORD” to mean, “Here is my plan God, please bless it.” My carnal mind will pursue this line of thinking, hidden away in my subconscious. To avoid this deception, I must be diligent in my suspicion of the way my mind is thinking.

Jesus came to help us with that. His expression of Psalm 37:5-6 is “Follow Me, and I will make you fishers of men.” It is important to note that Jesus made them disciple makers. That’s a lesson for another time. The point here is that God’s planning process is a following and making process.

Let me be clear: Failing to follow Jesus will result in the failure of God’s plan for you. Refusing to be made is a refusal of His plan.

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Now that we have positioned ourselves to hear God’s instruction, and discovered the purposes of God in His call to more, we can begin to explore His process for planning. I feel the need to share – here at the beginning – that God’s way for planning is not like anything you may have experienced in the world.

There are many ways that the kingdom of God is contrary to the world (e.g., love your enemies, the greater serve the lesser). Planning is one of those things. In fact, planning as we know it – work breakdown structures, contingencies, etc. – have no place in the kingdom of God.

This is a hard thing for a process-oriented problem solver to share. I love planning. Task lists are my thing. It is hard letting go of what you are good at.

That is why, when God called me to the more of Workplace Ministry, the first thing I had to die to was my propensity to create and own the process. At first, I thought God’s issue with me was my desire to own and control. While that was something He would deal with, the bigger consideration was the method of planning itself. Read the rest of this entry »

I began writing this series for those in my spheres of influence who expressed a feeling of transition in their lives; that God was up to something. Over the years, I have recognized this as God’s call to a new kingdom assignment – His call to more of the good work that brings Him glory.

The question in these situations is always, “What does He want me to do?” While the question is reasonable, our expectations for the answer are often misguided. In our get-it-done, “what have you done for me lately?” world, we fall into the trap of, well, just getting it done; so we can move onto the next thing.

Execution without planning is foolish. Planning without first understanding the purpose for the plan, even more so. This is particularly true when our “company” is going through transition. As hard and contrary to our nature as it may be, we must step back and slow down. That has been the message and purpose of this series.

It all boils down to two questions: Who is the Boss? Will I trust Him?

Admittedly, this series is longer than I expected (congratulations to those who have hung in there). At this point, we have journeyed through two of the three phases God encouraged me to cover. The first, positioning ourselves, prepares us for the second, discovering His purpose.

It is important that these phases be completed in sequence. There is more going on here than the collection of information. God always uses these opportunities to draw us to Himself; and He will not continue to participate in the process until His intentions are accomplished.

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Discovering God’s ultimate purpose in His story is something of a double-edged sword. On the one edge, the fact that He is ultimately interested in more than saving humanity is a revelation that can free us, from ourselves, to participate in the most exciting adventure of our lives.

At the same time, a discovery of such magnitude often leaves us with a fractured paradigm. This will leave many people uncomfortable, confused and spiritually disoriented. Don’t be alarmed; this is normal.

God uses the truth to make us free. With God, that can be like cutting our tether while floating in deep space. What we do next is critically important!!

If then you were raised with Christ, seek those things which are above, where Christ is, sitting at the right hand of God. Set your mind on things above, not on things on the earth. For you died, and your life is hidden with Christ in God. Colossians 3:1-3

When God frees us from one thing, it is always to focus on something better. He intends for us to focus on Him; and (this is the most important thing) He intends to help us. This you must believe!!

Here are three practical disciplines that will – in a very personally way – comfort, clarify and re-orient our minds toward God’s purpose in His call to more. As you will see, they are based on the three primary purposes of His story.

What you will discover in exercising these disciplines is a strong bond to His heart, and the desires that are waiting there for you.

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Confess your sins to one another, and pray for one another, that you may be healed. The effective, fervent prayer of a righteous man avails much. James 5:16

Just the other day, I discovered – no, I was shown – that there has been a bit of lawlessness hidden away in my mind. I have seen the symptoms of it, but did not know they were connected to something so profoundly evil.

Understand me: I did not know the lawlessness was there until the Holy Spirit revealed it to me. It was small and carefully hidden.

Indeed, the symptoms themselves are minor to look at (i.e., no gross sin). Only those closest to me would have noticed them. In fact, the worst of them – a presumption of what is just and fair – would be accepted by the modern world; perhaps even encouraged and applauded.

But, thank God, I am not of this world.

Once the lawlessness was revealed, I began to understand the true ugliness and danger of it. At its heart was a self-centric perspective. In this case, the determination of justice and fairness were wrapped around my selfish opinions.

It has been a sobering and frightening revelation that these relatively minor symptoms were rooted in lawlessness; for lawlessness leads to deception and to our Godward love growing cold. The lawless are cursed to an eternity of weeping and gnashing of teeth.

That is my confession. Here is my profession of faith. Read the rest of this entry »

Navigating God’s call to more based on the trajectory of our past, is profitable and encouraging; but it is a limited perspective. To understand and follow God’s purpose for the next season, we must also look to the future.

You may be tempted to balk at this. The future is unknown. It can be an uncomfortable consideration for many; and our subconscious minds seem to always be playing tricks. Resist the temptation. Be suspicious of your mind. Embrace the mind of Christ; and the heart of God.

Here’s a good word: God’s call to more is an adventure. There’s just no getting around it. Adventures are a mix of excitement and fear. Deal with the fear, and it is all excitement. Behind every fear is a lie. Deal with the lie, and the fear will fly.

Welcome to the most exciting adventure of your life!!!

Now, back to the heart of God. That’s where we will find the light we need to discern the purpose God has for our next season, and the transition that will guide us into it. Read the rest of this entry »

The discovery that God is a process-oriented problem solver can be an empowering revelation. To know God is up to something – in both His story and in the seasons of our lives – gives us hope and understanding. It is not a small thing to stop looking at the work of God in terms of events that are haphazardly strung together.

God is a very careful and deliberate orchestrator!!

This discovery is particularly helpful for those in transition. It stretches our perspective, helping us to see the connection of what He has done, and what He will do, to what He is doing right now. It gives value to every moment; and helps us to follow along.

Because we are “in process”, examining the past and the future often sheds light on the purpose God has for our next season.

Let me stop here and remind everyone that every bit of examination, consideration, exploration, etc. is to be done in conversation with God. If we are not positioned to hear what He has to say, we will undoubtedly miss something – potentially something very important.

It is good to know that the Father loves talking to His children.

Now, with that reminder, let’s look at the way God brings the past into our conversation about the His call to more. Read the rest of this entry »

As a reminder, this series is being written for those who sense they are in a season of transition – a call by God to more kingdom adventure. God has a way to maximize the “more” of that adventure. It includes preparation, and discovery of purpose, before planning and execution.

We are currently in the discovery phase – seeking to hear and understand God’s purpose for the next season of our lives. In our previous article, we learned that our purposes are contextualized and constrained by God ultimate purpose – to restore the reign, habitation and intimacy He lost in mankind’s rebellion.

Mankind’s fall was more devastating that we can imagine. God’s desire to include us in the restoration has introduced a complexity that we simply cannot fathom. His patience and long-suffering leaves us wanting for greater exclamations of praise and worship!

God is a process-oriented problem solver. The solution to the problem mankind introduced in the rebellion is a process that includes many “good works”. Strung together – in process – these culminate in the restoration of all things dear to God.

You may not have considered this: Our desire and willingness to be prepared, and to discovered His purposes for us, is a form of worship – perhaps even more than the work itself. If this is our heart’s desire, the time invested will not be wasted; for we will emerge with faith for the good works that await us. Read the rest of this entry »

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