Tuesday, March 21, 2017

RISE S.T.R.O.N.G.


I always had a fascination with oriental art, maybe its because my grandmother loved it and maybe because my father loved those horribly dubbed Chinese movies where the mouth was moving in one direction and the words were not matching up..  I don't know what it is but there is something about the art form, the textures in the stroke, the textiles they use, the oyster shells and glass that is so delicate and powerful and impacting, or maybe its the strong meaning behind something that appears so delicate.  For instance, I love Bonsai trees and Cherry Blossoms in the spring.  I have this new found love not so much for the beauty of the art, but the meaning of the art which is really the beauty in it.  The beauty is in the meaning and what it represents not so much the object.    The Bonsai tree is mini in stature and is very delicate, the Bonsai is not a species of tree but an art form that is produce by the careful pruning of the tree and reflects the connectedness of life and respect for the beauty of nature.  ( I have to give it to Ehow for that one because that was all them...  but so eloquently stated that you look at the tree differently now)  The Cherry blossom represents power and love.  The Cherry Blossoms were planted after wars to represent what comes after war.  The beauty after the ashes.   Its incredible how you can see God in everything if you just take a moment to see God first, then his creations are no longer a mystery but yet a piece to a puzzle that he connects so that you see Him in everything.  Revelations 4:11,  "Thou art worthy, O Lord, to receive glory and honour and power: for thou hast created all things, and for thy pleasure they are and were created."   Either way you look at these trees they had to go through a pruning, a time of loss, shedding, planting, process and bloom. 


There is something birthed in the season to reveal the greater meaning of the bigger plan.  You have to be willing to be processed to be birthed.  You see, the Bonsai is just a tree but its the art form of the careful pruning that brings out the beauty of the delicateness.  This is not indicating frailty but the ability to be pruned, to demonstrate the respect of life and connectedness to life is the quintessential essence of what Christ does for us.  Behold, we have been made new, formed in His image, that is the true meaning of "worship in beauty of holiness".  Holiness comes with pruning, sanctification, purification so in order to be connected to life we have to be pruned.  Jesus is the way, the truth and the life...    The Cherry blossom is just a tree but when planted after war it brings beauty, you can only appreciate true beauty when all you have seen is the war- other wise its just common. 
Our lives in Christ parallel this image whether it be through a tree, through a tunnel or through the eyes of a spiritual mirror its really all the same.  This is not about a physical transformation but more or less referencing the realm of the soul and the transformation and renewing of the mind.  The ground work starts in your heart but the maintenance is in your mind.  The internal war exists at times to deconstruct an image that was created by the masks of the world and to reconstruct from the ground up, meaning the foundation of who we are must be built of the foundation of the earth which is the word of God.  See the beauty, made new to be created in His image- just like the cherry blossom.  Your ways consist of the battle of the old you dying to self and the new you emerging and then there are external disasters that occur which impact the internal war.  Your going to experience the pain and the brokenness- its a requirement.  In order for the light to get in you have to be broken, in order to RISE you must first go low and by low I mean deep.                                                         

"If you are willing to take the challenge to RISE then be prepared to go low, really low, because only out of the ashes will you RISE.
It is only then do we hear the depth of our soul in the solitude of our own being without the noise, learning to function through the sifting of the voices and the reality of who we are on the inside"

This is a process where you can no longer reach back, you have to keep your eyes guarded and your mind focused because any withdrawal from process is like drawing up liquid through a straw only to let it go back down the straw.  The energy expended to draw out can not compare to the lack of energy used for something to go back in.  You've been pulled out-- you've been separated-- its the drawing out that could be painful, because the realization of what we became over time is too shameful or even the understanding that we must face a perfect God, and he loves us anyhow-  No more depression to take away the joy, no more fear that prevents you from success, no more being afraid to experience life, no more succumbing to people's opinions of you, no more walking around in a false image to fit in, no more feeling good enough, but being worthy to be called His, His perfect love cast out fear, His love that said you were worth dying for.  We can only overcome the old self by allowing God to make us new to be the best version of us that we can be for His glory and that is by dying to self and trusting the Lord.  

Philippians 3:8-16New International Version (NIV)
What is more, I consider everything a loss because of the surpassing worth of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord, for whose sake I have lost all things. I consider them garbage, that I may gain Christ and be found in him, not having a righteousness of my own that comes from the law, but that which is through faith in[a] Christ—the righteousness that comes from God on the basis of faith. 10 I want to know Christ—yes, to know the power of his resurrection and participation in his sufferings, becoming like him in his death, 11 and so, somehow, attaining to the resurrection from the dead.
12 Not that I have already obtained all this, or have already arrived at my goal, but I press on to take hold of that for which Christ Jesus took hold of me. 13 Brothers and sisters, I do not consider myself yet to have taken hold of it. But one thing I do: Forgetting what is behind and straining toward what is ahead, 14 I press on toward the goal to win the prize for which God has called me heavenward in Christ Jesus.   

"Renew your mind daily focusing on the day at hand and what is in front of you so that you can enter your bright future rather than your darkened past.   If babies can’t go back into the birth canal then you can’t go back into the tunnel.  Get out! Get out and run with the vision before you. I say to you RUN that race…  Here is a starting point, forget yoga, forget that foo-foo new age hypnotic  stuff, get in the face and presence of God and ask him to minister to you.  Start with fasting, give him your sacrifice and He will give you His thoughts.  Jeremiah 33:3 -Call on me and I will answer thee and show you great and mighty things that you do not know.  The New Living Translation says it like this, call on me and I will answer you and tell you great and unsearchable things that you do not know.  That word change makes a big difference on how you read that scripture.  Mighty things can have a very loose translation, but unsearchable means that it unable to be clearly understood.  Which means in order to find out who you are and what you are purposed to do you must know your creator.   How incredible, that God will reveal to you who He is so that you know who you are, and ultimately when you see who you are created to be, then will you have true understanding on why it is important to conform to His will and not your own.  It all starts with two words The Truth.  I emphasize that because in order to know truth you have to know The Truth and that is the Lord himself, Christ. "

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