Don’t Go Without!

What does a rabbit’s foot and guardian angels have to do with this article? Keep reading and find out…

“And he went out to meet Asa, and said to him: “Hear me, Asa, and all Judah and Benjamin. The Lord is with you while you are with Him. If you seek Him, He will be found by you; but if you forsake Him, He will forsake you. For a long time Israel has been without the true God, without a teaching priest, and without law. ” (2 Chronicles 15:2–3, NKJV)

There’s so much in just these two verses.

“The Lord is with you while you are with Him.” We often pray the prayer, “Lord, just be with us….” It’s a nice prayer to pray, but God tells us how to have the Lord with you: Be with Him. Instead of asking the Lord to tag along with you, like some sort of guardian angel, or lucky rabbit’s foot, we need to be much with Him.

This next part leapt off the pages to me: “For a long time Maui has been without the true God, without a teaching priest, and without law.”

1. WITHOUT RELATIONSHIP Think of that, “without the true God”. It’s like living your whole life thinking and doing one thing, but the true reality is simply a figment of your imagination. In the context, Israel was getting involved in idol worship. They thought Ashram (v. 16) represented a powerful god, but it was merely statue. It would be like if my son talked to my guitar saying, “Daddy, I ask you to help me now.” I would have to grab him and say, “Hey, over here! I’m not that piece of wood!” I think of so many here in the Hawaii – living without God. Everyday, driving to work, not knowing the sweet presence of the Lord. ‘O how it must change!

2. WITHOUT REVELATION “without a teaching priest”. I like how Ezekiel puts it… “And they shall teach My people the difference between the holy and the unholy, and cause them to discern between the unclean and the clean.” (Ezekiel 44:23, NKJV) ‘O to receive and walk-in revelation knowledge!

3. WITHOUT RULES “without the law”. Now, I would be the first one to tell you, that Christianity isn’t a bunch of rules and regulations, but I’ve found that we can be so “free” that no longer have standards of righteousness. I see believers posting pictures on the internet of them drinking alcohol, smoking, and swearing . How can we really know the way if we’ve lost our compass, our sense of direction, and personal holiness? How can we show others the way if we, ourselves don’t know where we’re going ourselves? We’re going “without”.

…Without the presence of God
…Without the Bible
…Without daily devotions
…Without convictions and standards
…Without a prayer-life
… Without power
…Without direction

The Lord never meant for any one of us to go without. He fills the hunger soul with good things. Are you hungry enough to go to Him today? Don’t be one of those who goes without. Allow the Lord to do a work in your life today.

Prayer:
“Lord, I don’t want to “go without”. I need a stronger relationship with You today. Help me to draw near to You today, I pray. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.”

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Freedom from OCD

Light and Truth must function together. One without the other, causes great frustration.

Oh, send out Your light and Your truth! Let them lead me; Let them bring me to Your holy hill And to Your tabernacle. [Ps. 42:3]

Trichotillomania (Hair-pulling disorder)

I recently watched an episode of A&E’s, Obsessed. One gal, who seemed like she had everything going for her: Healthy, pretty, employed, has her own apartment; and yet she has a very dark secret that no one knows about. She pulls her own hair out from 3-to-4 hours a nite, and as a result he has over 40 sets of wigs that she wears. There’s an inner frustration that’s festering, and causing self-mutilation. (Here’s where Light and Truth are not functioning together.) Why? Because, in this show, when asked why she does it, she said, “I just want to be beautiful, and have normal hair.” Doesn’t sound logical, does it?

Because if she wants to be beautiful, and have normal hair, why doesn’t she just stop pulling out her hair, you ask? Because Truth is missing. See, the enemy of all life is, Satan; and he speaks lies to people in order to destroy their life, and to ultimately cause them to self-destruct. Jesus said, “I am the Way, the Truth, and the Life”. The devil was speaking to her… “You’re ugly, you’ll never be pretty enough, why not pull out some of your hair, and I’ll make you feel better inside.” But if Jesus where allowed to come in and speak to her, it might sound something like this…

“My daughter, you are so beautiful, I understand the pain you feel inside, that most of the time you feel inferior, and want to be different. But I want you to know that you are already beautiful in My eyes, and that you too must also see yourself the way I see you, and not allow yourself to be rules by the external, but rather by the internal. Come, my beloved, tell me what’s on your mind right now, and I will remove the pain and frustration, and cause you to overcome this in your life.”

See, as the Light and the Truth are allowed into the human spirit, they lead us to the place where God’s presence dwells. Because it’s only in this place that you and I will find comfort, freedom, and a release from the strongholds that seek to strangle our lives.

If you’re experiencing different obsessions, like this gal, you can be free. If you’re experiencing any other stronghold such as these, you can be free: OCD, Cutting, Bulimia, Anorexia, Drug use, Alcoholism, Nail-biting, Anger, Depression, Fears, Phobias, Overeating, Anxiety, Stress, Panic Attacks. If you have any of these things in your life, or something similar, I want you to pray this prayer out loud:

“Jesus, I believe that You are the Truth. So, I’m asking You right now, to send out Your Light and Your Truth. Let them function as one in my heart and mind. Bring me close to Your heart, I need to be released from my stronghold __________________________ (say it out loud) by Your power. Set me free right now, in Jesus’ Name, Amen.”

If you’ve prayed that prayer, you have just taken the first step in your freedom. But remember how Light and Truth function together? Now, you need to begin re-programming your mind through the reading of God’s Word, The Bible, so that you can understand who you are in God’s eyes, and so that you can begin to really know who God is. Post a comment if you’d like, and I will do my best to help in any way I can. May you experience total transformation, and live the best life you can!

Freebird

If you grew up in the 70’s, (or if you watched Forrest Gump), you know the song, “Freebird”, by Lynyrd Skynyrd. Part of the song says,

“I’m as free as a bird now, and this bird you cannot change, Lord knows I cannot change.”

Many times we try to escape our problems by simply running away from them. “Lord knows I can’t change.” Actually… He does. In fact, He can set a person free in a different way that’s not necessarily by your own doing.

“…let the living bird loose in the open field .” [Lev. 14:2]

It’s amazing that God revealed in the Old Testament what to do when an incurable disease was healed, (Lev. 14:2). To God, doing the impossible, is just everyday, ordinary stuff that He does. Even when we were still partying it up, and sinning like there was no tomorrow, Jesus had already made provision for our Salvation (Rom. 5:8). The very fact that He included this in His Word ought to cause everyone to know that whatever mountain of difficulty is before us, whatever sickness or disease – God is able to make provision to heal, and set us free!

Digging a little deeper in Leviticus 14, what do each of these things mean? The priest was to take two birds (remember this, it’s important for later), a piece of cedar wood, a piece of scarlet material, and some hyssop. Then he was to put one of these in an earthen vessel, and then kill it over running water. Then he would take the living bird, and the other things, and dip them all in the bird’s blood, (…I know this sounds heavy, but hold on it’s gets easier to understand, I promise). The the blood would then be sprinkled on the leper seven times; and then the living bird would be set free in an open field.

Bird Killed in an Earthen Vessel: This represents Christ, leaving Heaven, inhabiting a human body, then dying for our sins. (2 Cor. 4:7)
Bird Killed over Running Water: This represents how Jesus acted in obedience to the Word of God in actually going to the Cross. It also represents the Holy Spirit, who alone empowers us to lay down our lives like Jesus did. (Zech. 4:6)
The Cedar Wood: This represents the Cross of Christ. (John 19:17)
The Scarlet: This represents the Blood of Christ, and the deliverance that it brings. (Josh. 2:18)
The Hyssop: This represents the passing-over of our sins by the Blood of the Lamb. (Ex. 12:22)
The Living Bird Loosed in the Open Field: This represents 1) the Resurrection of Christ, but also 2) it’s symbolic of us being set free by the death of another – namely Christ. (Rom. 8:2)

Can’t you just see that living bird, covered with blood and water, flapping vigorously, thinking: “Whoa? I almost DIED!! I can’t believe I’m flying away now! ‘O thank You, Jesus!” If you’re thinking, “Lord knows I can’t change” then maybe you need to know that Jesus was was that other “bird” that was killed, instead of you and I. Think of it! The Lord knew you couldn’t change on your own, that’s why He left Heaven 2000 years ago to become a human – just like you and me, to take our place.

‘O that you would soar in life, because of what Christ did on the Cross for you. Then you can truly sing, “…and I’m as free as a bird now…”

God is Moving in the Youth!

GodismovingOn Wed. Nite at United Youth we had a powerful move of God. My message was called, “The Right Kind of Heartburn”, as I preached on, “The Fire of God”. And I shared how John the Baptist said,

“I baptize you with water, but He… will baptize you with the Holy Spirit and with fire.” [Luke 3:16].

After the Word I opened the Altar to those who wanted that Fire, and… [as the old-timers would say…] “The Fire fell!” Every person I prayed for ⎯ I could literally feel God’s Love for. Tears were streaming down my eyes, and you could see the effects of the Holy Spirit on them as well. There was no manipulation. The Holy Spirit was moving. Many were crying, bowing-down, collapsing under the power of God, and 11 received the gift of the Holy Spirit and spoke in Tongues for the very first time. There was no striving. It was as if God stepped into the room.

Even parents of the youth came in and wanted to receive prayer. One 19 yr old in particular just sat in his chair. I walked up to him and said, “I want to pray for you.” As I did I could smell the Marijuana all over him. I just hugged him ⎯ like a father of a wayward son, and just broke-down crying. After about 5 seconds this young man’s tears were all over me. His Mother then came in. He did something that I’ve never seen before. He grabbed his Mom’s hand and bowed his head in reverend submission to her. It was beautiful as they were re-united. That Mom came up to me today at Church and said, “Thank you, Pastor Robb. My son hasn’t smoked weed ever since that nite”. Tears were streaming down her face.

I’m telling you – seeing young people change so suddenly because of the reality of the Holy Spirit’s Love and Fire will do something to you!

CHAOS IS TAKING OVER!!

At times it can seem like chaos is reigning.

– Parents are getting out of control
– Local drug dealers are busy polluting Society
– Your best friend just talked behind your back
– Brothers & sisters are driving you crazy
– “There’s no food in the fridge!”
– …and “Why doesn’t anybody CARE!!!???”

Always remember that when it’s super crazy all around you – it doesn’t have to GET IN you. The storm might be raging all around you, but it doesn’t need to get all up ON you! Jesus is your Strong Tower – Run to Him and you’ll be safe. It’s the smartest move you’ll ever make.

Get Off The Criminal Road!

This week I was at the Illinois African-American Economic and Social Empowerment Summit in Springfield, IL with my Pastor. Now, as a ”white guy”, sure I felt a little out of place, but there was something that the representative of the Department of Corrections said about “Re-offenders” that really got me thinking. He said… “You gotta get ‘em off the criminal road!” It got me thinking about the parallels of the sinner who gives his heart to Christ, but that’s merely the beginning.

What is “The Criminal Road”? And how do you know you’re on that road? Sure, you repented of your sins, or asked God to forgive you of some sin you committed, but are you about to “re-offend”?

Matt 7:13 Enter ye in at the strait gate: for wide is the gate, and broad is the way, that leadeth to destruction, and many there be which go in thereat.”

Here’s some of the warning signs that you may in fact be on The Criminal Road:

1. YOU HAVE A POLLUTED SOCIAL NETWORK.
I see this all the time with young people. Their close friends are using profanity on their MySpace page, they’re still trying to “be cool” at school and fit in at Church, It just doesn’t work. “Who you hang with is who you’ll HANG with!” The noose is ready, the executioner is wearing his black hood! Why? Because you’re friends are bent on sin. They eat it up like a hungry pig in a garbage dump. Your social network has got to change. “Be not deceived: evil communications corrupt good manners.” [1Cor. 15:33]

2. YOU HAVE STINKIN’ THINKIN’.
Sure Jesus is in your heart, but the Devil is still controlling your thoughts. If you’re thinking about dope, Hennessy, or getting down at the Club, where do you think you are? You’re not on the Highway of Holiness, you’re on the Criminal Road, and you’re about to re-offend and get locked-up! Isaiah 35:8 says, “And a highway shall be there, and a way, and it shall be called The way of holiness; the unclean shall not pass over it; but it shall be for those: the wayfaring men, though fools, shall not err therein”.

3. YOU’VE GOT BOOGERS IN YOUR NOSE
Have you ever talked to someone and noticed they had a booger in their nose? They didn’t check themselves in the mirror beforehand. “And why beholdest thou the mote that is in thy brother’s eye, but considerest not the beam that is in thine own eye?” [Matt. 7:3] Many times the person on The Criminal Road has got his nose in everybody’s business but his own. He’s lost his focus on getting his own live on track, and somehow validates himself by correcting others.

4. YOU HAVE DIRTY HABBITS
Habits are something that you do day-in and day-out. A habit can make you or break you depending on what kind of habits you have. Nancy Reagan’s “Just Say No!” campaign didn’t work, because there was nothing to say “Yes” to! If you take away the Alcohol you’ve got to replace it by drinking the New Wine. If you take away the Marijuana or Crack pipe you’ve got to replace it with a passion for prayer and praise. You’ve got to exchange those dirty habits.

5. YOU’VE GOT BAD BREATH
I’m almost aghast at how many “Christians” these days use profanity or take the Lord’s Name in vain. “A good man out of the good treasure of his heart bringeth forth that which is good; and an evil man out of the evil treasure of his heart bringeth forth that which is evil: for of the abundance of the heart his mouth speaketh.” Luke 6:45. Cuss on, my friend – you’re on the Criminal Road and the Holy Spirit is about incarcerate you if you don’t take a detour – quick!

6. YOU’VE GOT A SMELLY SCHEDULE
The person who’s on the Criminal Road is consistently lazy with fulfilling their priorities. They say things like, “Yeah, I’ve been busy lately”, “I just haven’t had time”, or “I know I should have but…” My Pastor once said, “Excuses are like buttholes – everyone’s got one.” I tell my young people, in regards to homework, etc. “Do the worst first.” We must set our priorities, and then everything else is secondary. The Criminal Road is filled with a smelly schedule. Get it cleaned-up and the fragrance of Christ [2 Cor. 2:14] will go before you!

SPEAK TO YOUR MOUNTAIN

Not too many people know the “Real Jesus”. Most picture Him with the fluffy white lamb wrapped around His shoulders, speaking softly, and never getting too loud about things. But if you check out Mark 11 you’ll see a “different kind of Jesus”. This Jesus is turning-over tables and getting a little bit upset. I guess you would too if you came home from school and someone you didn’t know was in your house eating pizza, drinking beer and playing with birds. You’d throw-down! And so did He.

In Mark 11 we also see Jesus doing something that you don’t usually hear about too often in Church. Jesus talked to a tree. Yep. Just let that marinate a little bit…. Good. Then after that he spoke to us how we could speak to mountains and see them removed. Listen, this is so radical! Forget the physics, forget black magic. Listen, the heart that’s been Born Again has POWER on the inside, and yet it’s released through our voice!

Are you letting Mountains of Depression overwhelm you? What about that Mountain of Sin that you can’t seem to beat? It’s time to Speak to your Mountain! And see it removed once and for all. Below are a few of the Rhema Card entries that I learned from my training at The City Church in Seattle with Pastors Wendell & Judah Smith… say these out loud everyday and see what happens!!

“I have faith in God. Therefore I will say to my mountain, ‘Be removed and be cast into the sea.’ I will not doubt in my heart, but believe that those things I say will be done. Therefore I know I will have whatever I say.” MARK 11:22,23

“If I am going to speak to my mountains, I will speak as the oracles of God.” 1PET. 4:11

“And I will prophesy to the mountains, and say, ‘O mountains, hear the Word of the Lord!” EZEK. 36:1

Start seeing your Mountains removed today!!