Tag Archives: Mel Wild

Good and more good!

17 Nov

My friend Mel Wild’s recent blog post ‘The Ultimate Immune System’, inspired the following.

When life brings disruptions, such as the ‘pandemic’, do we recoil and complain?  Or do embrace it as a golden opportunity to develop a new M.O. (mode of operation) for our lives?  Disruptions can be good and more good… depending on our basic perspectives on life and God.

Good
Some of us were stuck in the same ol’, same ol’… we’d grown overly familiar and very chummy with our comfortable but boring rut.  That rut was not giving us life… nor affording any opportunities for new life in our lives.  And sadly, we would have never gotten out of our rut unless something disruptive hadn’t come along.

So disruption, in this case, is good… even though it is disturbing and may be stressful.  O, it may require some purposeful activation, and a little help from others around us, but it leads us to better places… and a better M.O.

Even more good
There are others of us who are always looking for fresh frontiers because if we’re not moving, then we’re getting stale… and that’s not acceptable.  A ‘disruption’ becomes a welcomed opportunity to explore new M.O. for multiple areas of life.  Is disruption ruling you… or are you ruling over your disruption?  If you look at it from this perspective, this time of global disruption is like a pipin’ hot meal from Heaven, served up on a platter.  🙂

Really!  It’s like the ‘is-the-glass-half-full-or-half-empty’, sort of thing.  How do we view it?  Is it “Amen!” or is it, “O, me!”

Is this Biblical?
Take a look at Isa 60:2.  When do we get to shine?  When is our light shining the brightest?  When is our light most effective?  It’s right in the middle of the darkest darkness!!!!!

“For, look, darkness covers the earth and deep darkness covers the nations, but the Lord shines on you; his splendor appears over you.” – Isa 60:2

Expect the Light of Heaven in these times!  Look for it.  Greet it with open arms!  Embrace it!  Move into something brand new!

This could be one of the best transition times in your life.  It is certainly becoming that for me on several different fronts.

For more related to this subject try this.

— MLH

Reblog: We Are Far Too Easily Pleased

4 Feb

My good friend Mel Wild has done it again… he’s waxing eloquent and innovative in encapsulating the message of boundless grace and freedom in God.  Especially ponder C.S. Lewis’ quote: We settle for being far too easily pleased with mud pies… because we find it hard to grasp the magnitude of freedom God has for us.  You’ll enjoy this reblog from Mel’s In My Father’s House! — MLH

Boundless grace

Boundless_GraceThe purpose of God’s grace is not primarily about escaping punishment.  It’s primarily about freedom.

God wants you to be free just as He is free.  In fact, this freedom is why Christ set us free (Gal.5:1).

Our problem is, we’ve only known various forms of bondage we thought was freedom.

So God must take us through a process to help us understand that His freedom is better than our freedom.  This process is the renewing of our mind (Rom.12:2).  For He wants us to see things the way He sees them (1 Cor.2:16).

And it should take no stretch of faith for us to believe that His understanding of joy and life and freedom is infinitely better than ours.

As C.S. Lewis so aptly put it in His classic work, The Weight of Glory…

“It would seem that Our Lord finds our desires not too strong, but too weak.  We are half-hearted creatures, fooling about with drink and sex and ambition when infinite joy is offered us, like an ignorant child who wants to go on making mud pies in a slum because he cannot imagine what is meant by the offer of a holiday at the sea.  We are far too easily pleased.”

What is this grace freedom all about then?  It’s God’s life within you that empowers you to fully function in all you were meant to be.  As Graham Cooke said at a conference I was at…

“Grace is the empowering presence of God that enables you to become the person that He sees when He looks at you.”

When we properly understand this, we find that God’s grace is boundless, just as His love is unfathomable and His joy is infinite.

Contrary to our popular sin-obsessed evangelical culture, the most amazing thing about grace is that sin is no longer an issue between us and God.

The truth is, He’s not counting our sins against us anymore (See 2 Cor.5:19).  In fact, He’s pretty happy with the finished work of Christ on the Cross.  He seems to be content to remember them no more (Heb.8:12).

Yet, most Christians still don’t believe this. Furthermore, not only do they think God is still remembering and counting their sins against them, they’re still remembering and counting everybody else’s sins too.  Sadly, they stay in a religious form of bondage instead of a rebellious one.

This irony is quite astounding in light of the fact that declaring God’s complete forgiveness and reconciliation is our ministry (See 2 Cor.5:20).

Grace is mainly about empowering who God made us to be in Christ rather than about getting what we don’t deserve.  I realize that this is a different take but, again, only because of our sin-conscious religious paradigm.  And while I do agree that everything we receive from God is unmerited, it still misses the main point of grace.

Defining grace simply as unmerited favor also means that Jesus cannot be our example of what it looks like to walk in grace.

Why is this so?  Because, as Graham Cooke also pointed out, if grace is the unmerited favor of God, then Jesus didn’t have any.  Yet, He was full of grace and truth.

The sin issue for us on this side of the Cross is not about forgiveness, it’s that we still see it as a forbidden fruit instead of a toxic poison.  We still don’t see that sin has its own punishment in the form of the bondage and toll it takes on our lives.  Not to mention, the wreckage of broken relationships it can leave in its wake.

Claiming grace to get away with wrong doing is the baby end of Christian living.  As C.S. Lewis said, it shows our complete ignorance of what we have in Christ.

Paul tells us that, while everything is legal for a Christian, it’s not necessarily good for us.  Here’s how the Message paraphrase states this reality…

“Just because something is technically legal
doesn’t mean that it’s spiritually appropriate.
If I went around doing whatever
I thought I could get by with,
I’d be a slave to my whims.” (1 Cor.6:12 MSG)

Do you see this?  Sin is bondage and slavery, and we are no longer slaves.  It’s not appropriate because we died and our life is Christ’s life (Rom.6:1-4, 14).

Spiritual maturity is finding the source of our life from Christ.  Everything we do from this place will be filled with His joy and love.

We’re not freed to sin, we’re freed from sin’s power to enslave us.

Unlike Adam, our eyes have been opened to what the fruit of the Knowledge of Good and Evil actually is, and now we’re eating freely from the Tree of Life.  Sin no longer defines us, empowers our heart, nor compares with the fullness that fills God and the immeasurable power that works within us (Eph.3:19-20).  There’s really no contest.

I will finish by using my favorite passage from the Message Bible again.

“Dear, dear Corinthians,
I can’t tell you how much I long for you
to enter this wide-open, spacious life.
We didn’t fence you in.
The smallness you feel comes from within you.
Your lives aren’t small,but you’re living them in a small way.
I’m speaking as plainly as I can and with great affection.
Open up your lives.
Live openly and expansively!” (2 Cor.6:12-13 MSG)

Beloved of God, hear what the Spirit is saying.  Live your life openly and expansively.  Don’t let the smallness of religion or rebellion fence you in.  You are free as God is free. Live in His boundless life of grace.  It’s more amazing that you can possibly imagine.

Camping Under the Cross

12 Nov

In my friend Mel Wild’s blog, In My Father’s House, he recently posted an excellent article about how many believers get stuck, “Dancing at the door”.   That phrase creates such a great picture that I just couldn’t help writing more on the subject.

Most believers are so spiritually orphan minded and shame based in their relationship with Father, that they find themselves with their bedroll ‘setting up camp’ Crossunder the cross.  Why?  Because in keeping with the Accuser’s diabolic intent, we’re preoccupied with our ‘fallen-ness’… rather than our righteousness.  So the cross… our ‘door’… becomes our world.  The greater expanse of the Kingdom beyond is largely unexplored and quite unapproachable because we’re not worthy… and besides, we have very little CPU headroom after our frequent and intensive sin management sessions.

But even though a door is vital and necessary to enter any room, none of us bow down to worship a door when we walk in.  When did you last hear someone say?, “O awesome Door, Thank you for being my entry point to this Room.  But I am so unworthy of the Room beyond here, that I will just build three tabernacles here and put you on top of my most holy buildings… just to honor you, Door.  I will just stay here under the Door for the rest of my life, then when I die maybe I will be able to explore what’s inside this Room.  Thank you Door, for being so amazing.”

Of course not!  The primary reason for a door is to give access to a room.  Likewise, the cross (door) is the powerful symbol of when, where and how our sin got reckoned with.  It’s the only way.  Period.  No question!  And we don’t intend to diminish any value or power of the cross… but of incomparably more value than the cross, is the One who was on the cross.  And He’s not on the cross anymore!  He’s in the Room beyond the cross.  He’s at the Father’s right hand and welcomes us to join Him there… all expenses paid, no strings attached, leave our door-camping-gear behind.  Our reality is now defined by His victory and His righteousness… which have become ours.

He delightfully invites, “Come on through… and past the door.  Enter into the large place which I have prepared for you!  Come sit with me at My Father’s right hand.  Make My joy full.”

— MLH

Quote: Exposing the Orphan Mindset

25 Oct

Mel is one of the freshest and clearest voices that I know on our journey into Grace.  In this eye-opening re-post he addresses a crucial ‘giant’ that has held much of humanity in bondage… the orphan mindset.  This mindset makes a person feel compelled to protect and provide for themselves (among many other poor to awful mindsets) because they think no one else will.  If you find yourself in this list of orphan mindsets, the revelation of Grace and the over-the-top favor of our Father will help to slay this ‘giant’ of feeling like a spiritual orphan. – MLH

The Spiritual Orphan Mindset

man_sunsetEvery once and a while I’ll turn my radio back on and expose myself to the theology of popular Christian music, only to be reminded again why I don’t listen to it.  The other day was no exception.

To be fair, there are also many good songs being written.  Songs that glorify God and remind us of who we are in Christ.  But many being sung only harden the spiritual orphan mindset and take us further away from our true identity.

You might be thinking about now, what do I mean by a spiritual orphan mindset?  I’m glad you asked!  I’ve written about it a lot in the past but will focus in on the mindset here.

First, a spiritual orphan, in a word, is about separation.  Orphans are fatherless and alone.  Spiritual orphans also live as though alone, instead of in the constant embrace their heavenly Father.

Therefore, the spiritual orphan mindset is about the illusion of separation.

Its theology is always about distance and delay.

Any time you view yourself separate from God in any way, you’re thinking like a spiritual orphan.

While it is true, from Adam until Christ, we were separated from God because the first orphan–Satan–got Adam to eat from the wrong tree.  But Jesus, the first and only begotten Son, told this orphaned world that He would leave and send the Promise of the Father–the Holy Spirit–so that we would no longer be orphans.

For the triune God would come and make His home in those who believed in Him (bold-type added for emphasis).

“I will not leave you orphans;
I will come to you…
23 Jesus answered and said to him,
If anyone loves Me, he will keep My word;
and My Father will love him,
and We will come to him
and make Our home with him.” (John 14:18, 23 NKJV)

In fact, Jesus’ final discourse in John before He’s betrayed by spiritual orphans (John 13:31-17:26) is about what it looks like when you’re at home in the Father and He’s at home in you.  It needs to be read as one message.

It’s about our life with our Father in Christ–now–as a son in the Spirit.

You are home now in Him.

But here’s the real problem.  We’ve been taught and have lived with an orphan view of Christianity for many centuries–a theology that thinks like we’re still spiritual orphans, like under the Old Testament.

But once you see it, you will clearly see that this religious paradigm contradicts the truth about who we are in Christ.  The risk I take in saying this is that this mindset is so deeply entrenched in our thinking that you may dismiss or argue with what I’m saying.

Let me give you some examples of what I mean by this orphan-hearted illusion of separation.

We are thinking like a spiritual orphan when…

…we see Jesus crucified, buried and resurrected but we don’t see ourselves crucified, buried and resurrected in Him

…we think of ourselves down here on the earth but God is up there in heaven

…it’s all about going to heaven when we die instead of being invited into fellowship with the Father in the Son at His right hand in heaven now (1 John 1:3-5)

…we relate to Jesus more than the Father, even though Jesus’ purpose was to bring us into the same relationship He has had with the Father from eternity (John 17:21-26)

…we pray to Jesus instead of to the Father as His sons in Christ (John 16:23-24)

…we think and say that Jesus is the only way to heaven instead of the only way to the Father (John 14:6)

…most of our worship songs are about Jesus but very few about the Father

…we sing songs or pray to plead with the Holy Spirit to come (instead of asking to be made more aware of His presence)

…we put off the relevance of the Kingdom of heaven until after we die

…like the younger rebellious brother (Luke 15:11-24), we prefer the things of God apart from Him rather than having them in Him.

…like the elder religious brother (Luke 15:31),we put off our inheritance until we die and go to heaven, never availing ourselves to all that the Father has now (Luke 12:32)

…we think we’re getting a “mansion” up in the sky somewhere when we die instead of it being a dwelling place in the Spirit now.  I wrote on this before

…we see ourselves as a slave instead of a son (Gal.4:7), a servant of God instead of His friend and confidential partner (John15:15),

…our relationship with God is shaped more by duty and service than intimacy and mutually reciprocating love

…we say (or sing) that this is not our home, that heaven is our home, but we fail to see that we’re living from heaven now (Eph.2:6; Phil.3:20; Heb.12:22).  I wrote about thishere

…we relate more to the Old Testament God of conditional performance-obedience than the unconditional love, righteousness and holiness freely given to us through the grace of Jesus Christ by believing His promises (Rom.4:3-5; 5:17)

…we think individualistically, not seeing our life in Christ in a corporate family sense

…we’re seeing ourselves in any way different than Christ in this world (1 John 4:17).  Not that we’re God, but that we are in Him and His life is our life (Gal.2:20; Col.3:3).

Furthermore, the orphan mindset is seen in the carnal Corinthians in Paul’s day, who he called spiritual infants because they were thinking like “mere humans,” dividing themselves by their pet doctrines and by who they follow (1 Cor.1:10-13; 3:1-3).

When we say, “I’m a ____ (fill in your denomination or non-denomination) instead of, “I’m part of the family of God in Christ,” we reveal this mentality.

Spiritual orphans don’t think multi-generationally, but only for themselves, preferring doctrines that feed our need for self-preservation rather than relationship and intimacy.

We would rather condemn this planet and escape from it than be the light and love of our Father in it.

Nor do spiritual orphans consider the original, unrescinded mandate for dominion (Gen.1:26-28), which was to cultivate the culture of heaven on the earth–to represent the Father’s heart as Jesus did, until the knowledge of God covers the earth like the waters cover the sea (Hab.2:14).

Beloved, we are fully-affirmed sons and daughters of our heavenly Father, not scared and fear-driven spiritual orphans groping in the dark.  We belong to one another, part of the biggest family in creation, spanning both heaven and earth (Eph.3:14-15).

So let’s stop thinking like orphans, singing like orphans… let’s be about our Father’s business.  He’s got really good things in mind for us!

Photo (modified) used by permission through freeimages.com

For more inspired writing from Mel Wild see his blog: In My Father’s House

Did God save us from this earth or for it?

29 Mar

Let’s ‘stir the pot’… a ‘pot’ that has been stagnant and uninspiring for far too long.  Fresh thoughts… fun thoughts… and maybe provocative thoughts for some.  Thanks Mel, I’m right there with you.

In My Father's House

Save_from_or_for I want to talk about some popular evangelical mythology today by asking some thought-provoking questions.

Did God create man so that he could escape this wicked world and “fly away” to an invisible heaven forever? Or did He have a different ultimate purpose in mind?

View original post 1,101 more words

Thoughts about humility

28 Sep

This a re-post of a great article on humility written by Mel Wild and posted on his blog,In My Father’s House


Thoughts about humility

Posted on 9/28/13 by 

worms

“Oh, it’s not me, it’s all Jesus….I’m nothing…I’m just a worm in His sight… just a dirty old sinner saved by grace.”

Does this self-effacing posture sound like humility to you?  Do you embrace a “worthless worm” theology about who you are?

After all, isn’t our righteousness as filthy rags…”

Is it?

Actually, this is what often passes for humility in Christianity.  But closer inspection will reveal it’s really not.  In some ways it betrays a self-righteousness, even spiritual pride, because we’re placing our thoughts about ourselves above God’s thoughts about us.

I understand that the intent is to honor Jesus and accentuate the grace of God.  That’s commendable but dangerously misguided because it actually keeps us locked up in a tomb of doubt and confusion about ourselves, guarded by our own insecurities.  It blinds us from seeing who we are on this side of the Cross of Christ.

True humility is agreeing with what God says about you, nothing more, nothing less.  Anything other than this is not humility. It’s a subtle form of religious pride.

It’s not humility to make yourself out to be garbage or identify in any way with your old nature.  It’s actually unbelief, even the very height of arrogance through ignorance, because it dares to contradict God.  And it’s demeaning to your glorious nature through the finished work of Christ.

Degrading yourself also devalues what God has accomplished in the Cross of Christ.  For the Father values you the same as Jesus since He paid Jesus for you (Jn.3:16).  And He seems to think that you’re His masterpiece, His tapestry, His workmanship (Eph.2:10).  To say otherwise about ourselves would be like telling Michelangelo, Rembrandt, or Da Vinci that their paintings are just filthy rags.  Only worse, because you have much greater worth to God than a painting.

True humility is totally agreeing with your new nature and denying everything about your old nature.

True humility does not hang on to the past.  It knows our past belongs to God.  To hang on to it, or identify with it, is to think like a grave robber and a thief (2 Cor.5:17).  Humble people don’t live in the graveyard of their past.  They let it go.

You cannot be arrogant if you’re dead (Gal.2:20:Col.3:3).  Religious ideas of humility and what is arrogant come from insecure people who don’t know they’re dead.

As Bill Johnson has said, “Humility is not thinking less of yourself, it’s thinking of yourself less.”

True humility is knowing that your righteousness apart from Christ was “filthy rags,” but you’re not apart from Him anymore.

True humility is declaring that your righteousness and holiness is exactly the same as Christ’s righteousness and holiness (2 Cor.5:21; Rom.11:16; 12:1).

Denying self is not trying to be humble; it’s being alive to God in Christ (Rom.6:11, 13).

True humility doesn’t compare itself with others,  or even try to “live up” to some standard of Christ.  Humble people know they are literally placed in Christ.  And, in Him, they know they are already complete, they have everything He has, and they are everything that He is in this world (Col.2:10; 1 Jn.4:17).

True humility reveals identity and facilitates purpose.

Again, Bill Johnson, “False humility will keep us from our destiny. True humility will take us to it.”

Beloved, let’s begin seeing ourselves, and talking about ourselves, the same way God sees us for a change.  That’s humility that honors Him.

God values you and I so much that He gave us free will, which means we have the freedom to stubbornly hang on to all our religious false images about who we think we are if we want to.  But just know, that’s not being humble.

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