STINKY BLIND BART

Blind Bartimaeus was a Beggar. His name literally means: “Son of Pollution”… Or you could call him, “STINKY BLIND BART.” [Say that 10-times fast and you might say something else!!] Just take a minute and imagine yourself being in his shoes. Can you feel what it’s like when people walk past you calling you that? Think of the tricks people would play on you everyday as you sat outside the local grocery store begging for some change. I bet kids threw little rocks at him, and he didn’t even see it coming, and the kids would just laugh and run away. I bet other dignified people would simply turn their nose up at him. Maybe even some would even spit on him. “What a loser”, they would say.

But in Bart’s desperate condition he heard about a man who was doing wonderful things for people. After getting kicked one more time he cupped his face in his dirty hands and thought, “if Jesus did it for somebody else, maybe He can do it for me.” A few minutes later he heard that Jesus was walking down the street…

And when he heard that it was Jesus of Nazareth, he began to cry out and say, “Jesus, Son of David, have mercy on me!” Then many warned him to be quiet; but he cried out all the more, “Son of David, have mercy on me!” [Mark 10:47-48 NKJV]

There’s always going to be 2 different kinds of young people that are around Jesus: 1) Those who have gotten familiar with Jesus & the things of God, and they are just “Religiously Subdued”, and bored with Church. 2) But then you’ve got those young people that are radical and hungry for God, like Blind Bartimaeus! You can’t stop these kinds of young people! They can’t be silenced! When you tell them to “just be the kind of Christian that goes to Church, but don’t get too fanatical”, those are the young people who will close their bedroom door & start weeping in the presence of God as they start interceding for their friends who are lost!

Wherever you’re at today, make it you aim to rise up and not be quiet anymore. But the way it starts is for you to see yourself as a “Blind Bartimaeus”, because it’s only then that you will cry out. It’s only then that you will get God’s attention. Stop being a “mamby-pamby-Christian”! It’s time you got out of that stench you’re in and get into the new garments of Salvation that Christ is willing to give you. It’s time to declare to world that you believe in Jesus!

Determine today that YOU will not be silenced!!

Getting Back Into Focus

Glazed eyes and spiritual dizziness needs to be stopped! The perfume of the flesh cannot be matched with the extraordinary fragrance of His Presence.

SCRIPTURE

Jeremiah 48:10-11 “Cursed is he who does the work of the Lord deceitfully, And cursed is he who keeps back his sword from blood. 11 “Moab has been at ease from his youth; He has settled on his dregs, And has not been emptied from vessel to vessel, Nor has he gone into captivity. Therefore his taste remained in him, And his scent has not changed.”

OBSERVATION
Being honest before God I feel I’ve allowed some things to settle. Someone on the outside might say, “But you look fine! In fact it seems like you’re on-fire for God.” But as they say, “the nose knows.” And Jeremiah says, “his scent hasn’t changed.” In other words God is saying… “You ain’t smelling like a rose to Me!” This Scripture has always had incredible life-changing significance to me in difference seasons of my life. It just keeps coming back to me as if to slap, and re-slap me in the face. The Holy Spirit wants to pour me from “vessel-to-vessel”.

• From mere “prayer” to intimacy.
• From a “half-hearted container” into the cup of the zeal of the Lord
• From the “gotta-do-it Styrofoam cup” to the golden chalice of “it’s my honor to serve you, Lord.”

APPLICATION
My habit is to use a 1-hour prayer frame as a general marker to be reached everyday, nothing “special” – just a starting point. It’s not to earn God’s favor, but to merely place myself in a locked-in time frame where I give the Holy Spirit time to change me. “Could you not tarry one hour.” I guess I’ve gotten busy the last week and a half. Ministry trip, Church, meetings, paperwork, being tired, family… the list goes on and on. But still Jesus sits by Himself wondering what happened to the tears I shed in prayer for more of Him. It’s time to get back to my prayer commitment. It’s time to get back to looking over and revising my life’s mission statement, and setting new goals. It’s time to pursue, overtake, and recover all!

PRAYER
“Lord,. I come to you this morning ashamed. I know it’s not what you want for me, but I know it’s better than living in the smell of apathy. My present condition is nothing of intentional sin, but rather of neglecting my “so great a salvation”. Scheduled, business, and even ministry – I myself take full responsibility for allowing them to overwhelm me. Please forgive me today. Empower me to get back into focus, and to rise-up to be the man of God that you’ve called me to be. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.”

“Do you wish you could be a teen-ager again?”

Somebody recently asked me, (since I’m the Youth/Young Adults pastor here at Evangel)…. “Do you wish you could be a teen-ager all over again?” My reply was a hearty, “No way!!” I think too many young adults these days are living unsatisfied…. “If only I would have…..” and, “If I could do it all over I would have….” What’s up with that? Yeah, sure all of us have been through some tough stuff, and we didn’t always make the best decisions 100% of the time, but who has?

I loved being a teen-ager, but I love being in my 30’s a lot more. I feel like I’m in that age of the cutting-edge. And what I mean by that is that, as young adults, we’re no longer immature, playing games, but we’re not old and set in our ways either! We’re living in a time where ANYTHING is possible! We can start a business, launch a ministry, buy a house, or even get married! Nowadays, even the sky isn’t the limit! As young adults we’ve got to get off the couch and back on the cutting-edge. Whatever hurdles, obstacles, sins or offenses we have to get over – we’ve got to do it! Now is our time to rise-up and make a difference. Now is our time to get back on the cutting-edge!

Are You Wandering

ARE YOU W. A. N. D. E. R. I. N. G. IN YOUR FAITH? © by Pastor Robb

HERE’S SOME WARNING-SIGNS THAT YOU MIGHT BE IN TROUBLE. IF YOU CATCH THEM NOW, IT MIGHT NOT BE TOO LATE:

W. WHEN IS THE LAST TIME YOU INVITED YOUR FRIEND TO CHURCH?

A. ARE YOU A SELFISH CHRISTIAN, ONLY CONCERNED WITH YOUR OWN SALVATION?

N. NEGLECTING YOUR RELATIONSHIP WITH GOD BECAUSE MYSPACE IS MORE IMPORTANT BEING IN HIS PRESENCE?

D. DO YOU ONLY PRAY WHEN YOU’RE AT CHURCH?

E. “EVERYBODY” IS DOING IT, WHAT’S THE BIG DEAL?

R. READING THE BIBLE IS LIKE GOING TO THE DENTIST.

I. IRRITATED AT LITTLE THINGS – ALL THE TIME.

N. NOCTURNAL INSTEAD OF GETTING-UP EARLY TO SEEK THE FACE OF GOD.

G. GROWING COLD TOWARD GOD, AND GROPING AFTER SIN FOR GRATIFICATION.

If you’re experiencing any of these symptoms you are WANDERING away from God. It’s time to DRAW NEAR and find rest at the Feet of Jesus.

Stop Pushing Jesus to the Side!

Have you ever had someone push you? ‘Didn’t like it, did you? What did you want to do to them? Exacly. In Mark chapter 8 Peter pushed Jesus to the side…

“Peter took Him aside.” [v. 32]

“Uh-Oh!?? Ahh… Peter, don’t you know… that’s a big no-no? Jesus don’t like being pushed to the side!” So, what does “meek-and-mild” Jesus do? HE PUSHES BACK!! …

“He rebuked Peter, saying, “Get behind me, Satan! You are not mindful of the things of God… but the things of men!”

It’s not that Jesus was all-of-a-sudden CRAZY MAD at Peter. Jesus saw that there was a deeper issue in Peter. Peter was a “Christian” [you could say], but HE WAS BEING INFLUENCED BY THE POWERS OF DARKNESS. And the proof of it is that he PUSHED JESUS TO THE SIDE!! And remember this… if we’re going to push Jesus to the side…. watch out! HE’S GONNA PUSH BACK!!

WHAT DO WE DO? David said in Psalm 16:8 “I have set the Lord always before me!” Where are you setting Jesus? Behind you? Beside you? Be like David and set the Lord right in front of you! Every day acknowledge His Presence. Bust out your Bible! Let His Light shine on you. Turn your back on the Devil like you did when you dumped one of your old boyfriends!! Go ahead and DO IT!!!

and…. STOP PUSHING JESUS TO THE SIDE!!