Archive | June, 2016

DPM Update – 2016 June – Big News!

23 Jun

Dear Friends

Big news!
There is a new human being on planet Earth… Charles Lee Shaw is the newborn son of Chris and Charlie1Lydia Shaw.  Mama, baby and Daddy are doing just fine. They’re back home and now discovering the joys of parenting.  And speaking of parenting: Can you believe it, our baby just had a baby?  How does that happen!  BTW…both grandfathers have the middle name; ‘Lee’.  It’s pretty cool to have my name carried on.

Debbie and I were in Redding, CA to welcome our new family member.  While there, Debbie did things that mothers do… attending to Lydia’s needs, cooking, cleaning, and smooching on Charlie… and she’s staying an extra week in Redding.  I did the ‘daddy do’ things, plumbing repairs, car repairs, fix-it things… and agreed with the mothers about how cute Charlie is. 

More big news!
And speaking of really ‘grand’ children, Debbie and I will have another ‘grand’ addition to our family next January.  Markus and Allison cid:image004.jpg@01D1CCE6.88B6A2B0Hendrickson are expecting their second child. We’re so excited for them!  We were Skyping with them a while ago when we realized that Avalee’s shirt said, “Big Sister”.  Surprise!  It took us about 10 minutes for the meaning of the shirt to sink in.  Kids!!!  They’re always coming up with some way to pull a fast one over on their parents.  Keeps life interesting and fun.   
More stuff

While in Redding, I climbed a couple mountains (a 2000’ and a 5000’ climb).  What’s a dad to do when his son and daughter-in-love are in training for a scheduled 7000’ climb to the top of 14,000’ Mt Shasta this Saturday?  I had to join them, of course.  What kind of dad would I be if I couldn’t keep up with my son?  O, the ramifications are horrible!  🙂  And besides, every mountain I’ve ever seen has begged me to conquer it… so we conquered at least two of them.  It was very rewarding in lots of ways… family time and stunning views… and I still have aching muscles.  But it was well worth it!  So I’m ready for more mountains… natural and spiritual… because that’s just what pioneers live to do.


During our two weeks there, I helped lead a couple house churches and a monthly pastors meeting in Anderson, CA.  And Father’s Day just happened to occur while we were there… (Hmmm, I wonder who planned that???)  It was a great day with family and friends.

Angels are real!
Did you know that angels love when you talk about them and celebrate their ministry to us?  Well, here’s a cool story about an angel that seems to indicate just that. 

One morning I was meeting at a coffee shop with my friend Paul, and his son Jarius.  Our conversation gravitated to angel activities and applauding their attendance in our lives.  We actually experienced a little ‘God-swirl’ while talking.  The time came to leave to drive to Paul’s job nearby… a flip-house he had bought 2 weeks earlier.  As we left the coffee shop, I said, “Let’s see if we can find an angel on your job.”  I was half joking… but I’m convinced more and more that we should expect and integrate with our cid:image010.jpg@01D1CCE6.88B6A2B0angels’ presence around us.  cid:image012.jpg@01D1CCE6.88B6A2B0

The house was in the middle of serious remodel – tear out, rebuild, drywall/mud and paint – from top to bottom.  When we walked into a basement room, I exclaimed, “Paul! What is that up in the corner?”  It was an angel figurine.  To which he exclaimed, “I can’t believe it, I’ve been in here for two weeks and haven’t seen that angel!”  We both were taken aback at the remarkable timeliness of that angel when we said not more than 20 minutes before that we were going to see if we could find an angel on the job.  And how often do you even see an angel figure of any kind?  So cool!

Did a previous owner hang it and the angel was kept hidden from Paul until we could see it together and give it more gravity of meaning from our recent conversation?  Or did an angel create it in the minutes before we entered the room – complete with cobwebs – in order to confirm and validate our subject of angels?  I really don’t know.  But in any case, it caused our hearts to soar in faith for even more integration and participation with our “fellow servants”, the angels (Rev 19:10).

Exciting changes
This is an exciting time of great spiritual discoveries and growth.  I hope that you are right smack dab in the middle of the Good Stuff.  God is big… and He’s so good… and He’s delighted to give us the Kingdom! (Lk 12:32)  What a God!!

We love you!
Mark and Debbie

PS  If you’d like to follow us more frequently, check out our web locations below:
Dwelling Place Ministries
11011 Olive St
KC, MO 64131
DPM home:
Mark FB:
SP book FB:


SP True Stories: IRS, from debt to refund

17 Jun

From a friend:

We owed $10K in taxes for 2014.  We didn’t have the money; in fact our finances were in such a slump, we were barely able to pay mandatory bills.  Then God directed us to move to Montana, and the finances were miraculously provided!  When we got here my wife said she felt I should ask my uncle who is a CPA to look at our 2014 taxes.  I said I would do it for her sake; not thinking he would be able to help much.  About this time I felt led to pray that God would erase our tax debt.

So finally a year after our initial bill from the IRS, my uncle was able to not only reduce our taxes, but it turned out the IRS owed us over $1,000, because the tax preparation had not been done correctly the first time.  By then it was time to file our 2015 taxes which I did and we were supposed to get a $6K refund.IRS refund

But everything got mixed up in the system and it looked like we weren’t going to get our debt erased or our refund after all.  And to make matters worse, now we wouldn’t have enough money to attend my sister’s wedding in Missouri.  So we prayed and trusted God.  We prayed that if He wanted us to go, then let our tax situation get worked out and let us receive the check from the IRS by the end of April.  Then we had peace!

Miraculously, the last week of April we received a check in the mail for around $7K, and the rest is history!  No more IRS tax debt, bills paid and money to attend my sister’s wedding.  Glory to God!!! Jesus is amazing!!!!


What if: We can actually forgive sin?

5 Jun

For some time now, we’ve been exploring the stunning authority of the believer.  It’s hard to believe that God has given us so much favor… and that He’s even given us governance over the earth.  So let’s explore another of our dimensions of are forgiven

“If you might forgive the sins of any, they are forgiven them; if you might retain any, they are retained.” – John 20:23  (Berean Literal Bible)

Could this verse mean something beyond the obligatory phrase, “I forgive you”?  Here are at least two more levels of application for this verse.

1.  The believer has the right and power to forgive sins (or not)… in the eternal sense.

It’s quite possible that this is more true than we may be comfortable believing.  Can a human actually grant pardon to another person?  Can a person erase the guilt of sin from another person?  Well just think of it, if the priests of the OT could grant forgiveness through the sacrifice of an animal, then how much more can we in the NT, as priests to God (Rev 5:10), grant forgiveness via a much better sacrifice, Jesus (Heb 8:6).

As we’re finding, the stature and authority of the believer is dramatically beyond our wildest imaginations.  E.g. That we would be filled with all the fullness of God”, “We are the righteousness of God in Christ”, “We are as He is in this world”, “And they (we) will reign on the earth“, etc.  And look at this staggering verse:

Behold, I give you the authority to trample on serpents and scorpions, and over all the power of the enemy – Lk 10:19

So do we have the power to forgive sin in the eternal sense?  This would seem to jibe with Matt 18:18 – “Truly I say to you, whatever you bind on earth shall have been bound in heaven; and whatever you loose on earth shall have been loosed in heaven.” – NASB   (I’ve written on this topic here and here.)  Of course, we understand that our authority in the earth is only effective and empowered because of our position in Heaven (Eph 2:6)… from Heaven, we exercise dominion on the earth. 

Obviously, we’re not saying that it is necessary to have earthly priests grant us forgiveness.  We believe in the priesthood of all believers, which means that each person can approach the Throne of grace boldly (Heb 4:16) without an earthly intermediary.  We have the best mediator, Jesus.  But He’s awakening us to our original commission to exercise dominion over the earth (Gen 1:28) and inviting us to partner with Him in co-rulership in the earth.  So when we proclaim the richness of the Gospel message of forgiveness, we literally become Jesus’ voice of hope and salvation to all who will hear (I Pet 4:11).

Regarding the staggering authority God bestows on us, look at this passage which declares the magnitude and vastness of that authority:

“Then the sovereignty, the dominion and the greatness of all the kingdoms under the whole heaven will be given to the people of the saints of the Highest One; His kingdom will be an everlasting kingdom, and all the dominions will serve and obey Him.’” – Dan 7:27-28.

But even with compelling evidence, this first point is contested by some scholars.  It seems to encroach upon Deity to all except to those who have a revelation of how deeply God desires to partner in us.  Commentaries, Expositors Greek Testament and Cambridge Bible both corroborate this view of John 20:23.

Next, let’s look at a second point with which we’ll likely have no trouble agreeing.

2.  The believer declares to a ‘sinner’ that forgiveness has already been granted to them (back at the cross – 2000 years ago).  Upon hearing the ‘good news’, their faith is activated to receive that forgiveness.  And likewise, if a believer neglects to inform a ‘sinner’ that forgiveness has already been made on their behalf, then their faith never gets activated to receive the forgiveness.  

As we become aware of the powerful work of the Cross, we realize that Jesus’ one time sacrifice for all sins for all mankind for all time, actually and completely forgave all the sins of the world – past, present, and future.  So stunning in its scope!  This makes the Gospel exponentially Good News!l-24040

Our powerful herald to the world is, “You are forgiven!  God is not holding your sins against you (II Cor 5:19).  It’s so easy!  All you have to do to experience it is choose to receive His magnanimous gift of love and forgiveness.”

Here’s how it works:

(You) – “Hey bro, did you know that you are forgiven!  That’s right, your sins are already forgiven.  Jesus took care of them on the Cross 2000 years ago.  All you have to do is believe and receive.  No hoops… just Good News!”

(Them) – “Wow, I thought I had to grovel and beg… and maybe I wasn’t even worthy of Him giving me notice.  If you’re sure that He’s not mad at me… and if it’s really as good as you say, then I want in.  I believe and I receive.”

Bammmm!!!… the Good News of forgiveness declared… faith awakened… and forgiveness received.  Just as easy as that!  And here’s what just happened:

(They were) delivered from the power of darkness, and translated into the kingdom of his dear Son – Col 1:13

So in both points, 1 and 2, our confident declarations of forgiveness lift the heads and hearts of precious people out of the darkness of their world of hopelessness and into the Kingdom of Light and hope.  And Jesus gets joy out of the reunion of oneness with the people He loves… and the delight of partnering in us.

And folks… that can’t be all bad! 🙂

Now regarding the last phrase of verse Jn 20:23; the original Greek text does NOT include the word SINS.  It simply reads, “if you might retain any, they are retained.”  Is it possible that a more correct translation is; 

If you retain people by declaring the forgiveness of God conveyed through the richness of the Gospel, they will be saved. – (Mark’s paraphrase)

Now, doesn’t this seem to jibe better with our Father’s heart, especially considering that He’s “not willing that any should perish…”? (Jn 3:16-17, II Tim 2:4, II Pet 3:9)

So hey, let’s be more intentional in declaring forgiveness and retaining people into the Kingdom of God.  Isn’t it amazing… we have more clout than we ever realized!