a generation set on fire

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know[n]

The theme of Ignite this year was known[n]. As an attendee and participant of the event, I enjoyed the theme and the different aspects of its application brought by Brian and Andy, the two speakers for the night. It wasn’t a completely foreign topic, but it was presented in a way that was fresh and new and clearly applicable to each of our lives; both the idea that we are to reach to get to know God and how intimately we are known by Him. However, in the last few weeks, it is as if this idea was a seed that was planted in my mind and has been steadily growing and gaining strength as I see how undeniably this plays into every interaction and every relationship in my life.

Going into the night, and even coming out of it, this idea of being known was one that I hadn’t given a whole lot of intentional thought to. now, after sitting with it for a few weeks, it is clear that my desire to be KNOWN narrates SO much of my life! my desire to be known by others leads me to blog and facebook and tweet and talk and discuss and it even informs the conflicts of relationships where I want to know and be known more deeply. it is an innate desire God has created us with; the desire to know our creator and to be known by Him. and yet, too often I desire the approval of others in what THEY know of me and seek after deep, fulfilling relationships with people, even though I know that deep down, they can never know me the way that my Father in heaven always has and always will.

Galatians 4:8-11 (MSG) “Earlier, before you knew God personally, you were enslaved to so-called gods that had nothing of the divine about them. But now that you know the real God—or rather since God knows you—how can you possibly subject yourselves again to those paper tigers*? For that is exactly what you do when you are intimidated into scrupulously observing all the traditions, taboos, and superstitions associated with special days and seasons and years. I am afraid that all my hard work among you has gone up in a puff of smoke!”

And now, when I let myself be subject to those opinions, I am once again enslaving myself to the chains of the world and all of the unmet expectations that I turned from when I first gave my life over to Christ. why in the world do I do this when I have tasted and seen the satisfaction and fulfillment and adoption that God provides? and yet I do, over and over again, to my own detriment. and to quote a wise man, “The story of how I came to Jesus is not nearly as important as the story of why I keep coming back.” (David Montgomery, 2010) Because Jesus created me with the desire to be known, He is clear that I will have to keep running back time and time again after failing to understand his grace and mercy and what FREEDOM really looks like! Galatians 5:1 – “Christ has set us free to live a free life. So take your stand! Never again let anyone put a harness of slavery on you.” And so I step again into the light of the day, assured that I will be enslaved to none but what I choose, and what I choose is to Jesus and bearing His cross daily, nothing but Jesus.

 

blessed to share. SRL.

 

* the idiom “paper tigers” is a literal English translation of the Chinese phrase zhǐ lǎohǔ, meaning something that seems as threatening as a tiger, but is really harmless. This Chinese colloquialism is similar to the English phrase “its bark is worse than its bite”.

KNOW[N] – Ignite 2010!

it happened.

Ignite 2010 – amazing!!

October 23rd, 2010, from 5-8pm at Pomona First Baptist Church in Pomona, CA, God showed up in a HUGE way.

here’s some of what went down:

  • Diondre McBride started the evening off with a bang! kicked it off with some amazing dancing that was ALL worship to the Big Guy. really emphasized what an incredible, expressive dancer he is! definitely got everyone pumped up and excited for the night. 
  • Ryan Palmer, MC for the night, got everyone even more excited by leading some rhythms with the buckets and sticks we’d all received upon entering, really super way to get everyone involved and participating and having a BLAST getting LOUD and excited for what we all knew Jesus was going to do!
  • Musical worship was led by Ryan Hall and Jarret LeMaster, and absolutely led everyone into the tone and mood of the night which was ALL about praising God and recognizing who He is and that not only should we KNOW Him, but that we are already KNOWN by Him. the amazing talent of both of the bands and singers is undeniable, and gave SO much glory to God in all of the beauty of the words and music that got lifted up to Jesus Saturday night.
  • finally, we were blessed to hear from both Brian Holland and Andy Shoemaker during the course of the night. the theme was KNOW[N] and went over how BIG God is and how we are called to KNOW Him in ALL of who He is, not just who we make Him out to be. He is the only Creator of EVERYTHING in existence, and measures the universe in the span of His hand, but He also instructs us to call him Abba, Father, DADDY. A God big enough to encompass so many qualities is surely one that deserves our worship. He, the majestic King of everything, fit Himself into a human body so that He could come down and die for the sins of all of us humans. a-mazing. also talked about that night was how intimately we are KNOWN by God, a fact that so many of us like to overlook, as we have so much trouble believing that a God who knows us so intricately could possibly love us as we are. IT’S TRUE! God loves us intimately and extravagantly, and finally, He doesn’t want us to keep sitting around basking in the glory of being His followers, He wants us to go make a difference! He doesn’t NEED us to tell people about Him, and what it really comes down to is the Spirit doing the saving, but we are called to love people, and the most loving thing we can do is to introduce them to Jesus who can save them for eternity!

Some want to live within the sound of church or chapel bell;
I want to run a rescue shop within a yard of hell.
” – C.T. Studd

Jesus rocked our faces off at Ignite 2010, we are PUMPED about the next event on April 2nd, 2011! theme: RENOWN.

YOU NEED TO BE AT IGNITE!

Grace In Action

This is grace at its finest. Joy at its purest.

what Jesus DID do

Matthew 4:1-11 and Luke 4:1-13.

read those ^, they are important. they talk about Jesus and how HE handled temptation. you read that right. how HE handled TEMPTATION. just like what we face every single day. Jesus faced it. physically, mentally, politically, in every avenue of the life He had on earth, and two of the gospel writers detail it there.

I’ve read these accounts before, and noted how Jesus resisted temptation and all of that, but really? He’s JESUS. of COURSE He can resist temptation, He is the Son of God! and yet, in going through this passage in Luke at ecclesia with the high schoolers, there emerged a VERY important point that I have most certainly missed every other time. and it is KICKING my butt right now. are you ready for this?

JESUS RESISTED SATAN AND TEMPTATION USING SCRIPTURE.

much, much too often I look for wisdom from others on how I ought to act in a situation. I read my Bible for the foundational beliefs on which to act upon, but I seek guidance from God through prayer and through conversations with others on what I should DO. because, really, I won’t pretend the Word is actually accurate enough for present-day application, right?

are you kidding me?

NOT right! how in the world have I missed this all this time? even the GOD of the universe, when He was on earth, utilized the POWER of Scripture in the face of challenge, adversity, and temptation. and I have consistently missed out on this powerful weapon in my attempts to handle everything myself. so, what have I learned today? when God says that He will not leave us or forsake us, and that He will not leave us undefended in battle, HE MEANS IT! and I resolve to not miss out on the real utilization of this gift of the Word that God intends to be our lifeline to Him and to salvation.

today, Hebrews 4:12-13 “For the word of God is living and active. Sharper than any double-edged sword, it penetrates even to dividing soul and spirit, joints and marrow; it judges the thoughts and attitudes of the heart. Nothing in all creation is hidden from God’s sight. Everything is uncovered and laid bare before the eyes of him to whom we must give account.”

blessed to share. SRL

IGNITE PROMO VIDEO

People ask, “What is Ignite like? How cool is it?” I hope this video answers those questions.

blessing

In English, blessing means:

«      approbation; approval:

«      the act of invoking divine protection or aid

«      approval; good wishes

«      the bestowal of a divine gift or favour

«      the formal act of approving

Blessing: The word “blessing” is related in English to the word “blood.” Blessing is like the spiritual bloodstream that flows through the universe. When we bless something we are returning what we have received to its source. We know we receive life and breath from a (mysterious) source which is beyond us. That is like the blood coming from the heart and going back to the heart. -Brother David, “The Concept of Blessing”

There are three New Testament Greek words related directly to the English word “blessing” – ευλογία (eulogia) is the noun form, meaning “praise; fine speaking”.

BLESSING IN THE BIBLE – The word “blessing” recognizes the existence and deity of God. It tells us that we can be aware of His existence and have inner happiness because of who and what He is. It also tell us, from the Greek, that God was thinking about us in favorable terms, that He had a mental attitude of love, grace, and mercy toward us from before the beginning of time.

Henri Nouwen, in his book, “Life of the Beloved”, describes one of the four integral aspects of being God’s beloved as understanding that we are blessed.

It is so important that you and I experience that we are blessed. The word benediction means blessing. Literally, “bene” means good and “diction” means saying. To bless someone means to say good things about them. “You are good.” We need to know that good things are being said of us. We really have to trust that, otherwise we cannot bless other people. So many people don’t feel blessed.

I think it is very important that when we are in touch with our blessedness that we can then bless other people. People need our blessing; people need to know that their father, mother, brothers and sisters bless them.

As a child of God, I’m just overwhelmed at the whole idea of blessing and how intrinsically and intimately it ties me to God, my Creator. I don’t have any profound insight on this, just thought it was worth sharing.

Blessed by Him. SRL.