Live Like Jesus Is King

Paul Luckett | Brainflurry.com Live Like Jesus Is King

We’re very religious.

But, things in our world would look drastically different if Jesus were actually on the throne of our lives. “He does all things well.” -Mark 7:37

Does my thoughts look like they’re under His control?

Does my conversation reflect His perfect counsel and life giving power?

Does the order of my affairs look like He put them in order?

Does where I take residence reflect that a righteous, just, loving King resides there through me?

Do I allow His power to flow through me to make my home, workplace and community look like the Kingdom of God is coming?

Hypocrites!

We tote our bibles, go to church, do empty deeds and speak great swelling, superfluous words while people languish in the shadow of the great buildings and giant crosses we’ve erected to ourselves.

We come to religion looking for the good life, to justify ourselves, to take our ease and kick our feet up, often on the very backs of those we’re supposed to be serving.

This is not The Way.

Repent! Come from among these unbelieving apostates because their destruction is coming. (Matthew 24:45-51)

Seek the Kingdom of God beginning with it’s King.

See Jesus. Be transformed by who He is. Then, be Him in the world.

And, do not cease to make war until His Kingdom has come to every inch of our lives.

“Love has been perfected among us in this: that we may have boldness in the day of judgment; because as He is, so are we in this world. ” -1 John 4:17

#notwhatwho

Originally posted by Paul Luckett to Facebook here.

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The Meaning Of Life

Paul Luckett | Brainflurry.com The Meaning Of Life

The meaning of life is life: to gain it, to grow it, to give it future generations. -John 1:1-4, Malachi 2:15
What gives life? Love. -1 John 4:7-11
Who is Love? God, the Father of our Lord, Jesus Christ, revealed By The Holy Spirit. -John 10:10, John 6:68-69

We are created to be caretakers, not consumers who destroy and devours. -Genesis 2:15, Matthew 20:26-28

Creation should rejoice under our dominion, not groan. -Isaiah 11:1-9, Romans 8:19-21

It is more blessed (nearer to, more like God) to give than to receive. -Acts 20:35

The children of darkness think in terms of what they can get. Everything is a means of gain to them, even faith.

Beware.

Children of Light think in terms of what they can give.

Our orientation is an indication of whether we have any life in Christ at all. -Philippians 2:3-13

If I’m more concerned about what I’m going to buy rather than what I’m going to bestow, I may be one of the walking dead, infecting everything I touch. -1 Timothy 6:3-10

The good news is that there is life in Christ. If you believe Him, He will give you a new heart, His heart to be a caretaker rather than a consuming devourer, His heart to rule well rather than destroy. -John 1:9-13, John 6:47, Ezekiel 36:26-27

Believe Christ and be saved from the slavery of Death. -John 8:34-36, Romans 8:2

Choose life. -Deuteronomy 30:19

Unsatisfied With Daily Bread

Paul Luckett | Brainflurry.com Unsatisfied With Daily Bread

It’s been hard recently.

All summer, God has been feeding me with bread and meat brought by filthy ravens.

I hated it.

I wanted the king’s delicacies served at a grand banquet table.

I thought I deserved more than daily bread.

He used my difficulty to show me what was in my heart: that He was not enough.

Oh dear God, I’m sorry!

Lord, I repent. Give me a heart that is satisfied with You, alone.

Judge Not That You Be Not Judged

This is precisely what happened when God sent Jesus. They missed Him because He didn’t come in a package they approved of.

Jesus warned it will happen again, that we will fail to grasp Him, our light and life, when we overlook “the least of these” where He may be found. Matthew 25:45

Throw people away, whether because of their status, behavior, appearance, past, politics or even because they wronged you, at your own peril.

“Then they also will answer Him, saying, ‘Lord, when did we see You hungry or thirsty or a stranger or naked or sick or in prison, and did not minister to You?’

Then He will answer them, saying, ‘Assuredly, I say to you, inasmuch as you did not do it to one of the least of these, you did not do it to Me.’

And these will go away into everlasting punishment, but the righteous into eternal life.” – Matthew 25:31-46

Beware prejudice!

Consider again Luke 6:37-38 “Judge not, and you shall not be judged. Condemn not, and you shall not be condemned. Forgive, and you will be forgiven. Give, and it will be given to you: good measure, pressed down, shaken together, and running over will be put into your bosom. For with the same measure that you use, it will be measured back to you.”

Originally posted to Twitter here.

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I Don’t Feel God The Way I Used To

Paul Luckett | Brainflurry.com I Don't Feel God The Way I Used To

My wife left to go out of town and it taught me something.

I missed everything that comes with being near her.
I missed her company.
I missed her touch.

I wanted those things.

Should I have looked for them elsewhere because she was not near me? Would it have been appropriate to seek the companionship, intimacy and affection that I yearned for from another? Certainly not!

So, what do I instead?

I wait for my spouse.

I read my spouse’s love letters.
I reflect on my spouse’s love for me.
I reflect on my love toward my spouse.
I recall the last time I felt my spouse’s touch.
I remember the good we’ve had together and I rejoice over it.
I wait (prepare) with eager expectation for my spouse’s return.

So it is with the Lord.

He has not abandoned you. He’s just further ahead in the place that He’s calling you to. Sometimes, the absence we feel is His leading for us to come out of the place where we’ve grown comfortable and to come up just a little bit higher. (Romans 1:17, 2 Corinthians 3:18)

So, trust in His commitment to His promises, “He will never leave you nor forsake you” (Hebrews 13:5), be faithful to the Lord and seek His face because “He is a rewarder of those who diligently seek Him” (Hebrews 11:6). And, never forget that He wants to be with you as evidenced by His actions, foremost by coming through His Son Jesus (Immanuel) and including His moving on my heart to write this for you to read this right now.

In the words of David the psalmist,

“Wait on the Lord;
Be of good courage,
And He shall strengthen your heart;
Wait, I say, on the Lord!”
– Psalm 27:14

Joy And Pain

Paul Luckett | Brainflurry.com Joy And Pain

I have great joy, peace and hope because Christ is in my life.

Yet, there is pain that never leaves me. It’s like gravity, a condition of this environment, always there, weighing me down.

I don’t want to,
I don’t feel like,
I don’t have the strength to,
are all ways the pain makes me feel.

But, there is strength to thrive in spite of the pain: His strength.

To enjoy it I have to accept my weakness and His power, allow it to align me, flow through me and make me flourish,
like a flower emerging from the weight of the earth, its roots still in but its bud reaching toward the sun.

Quite often, life requires more than I have. But, His grace is sufficient. (2 Corinthians 12:8-9)

There is power to overcome
I don’t want to,
I don’t feel like,
I don’t have the strength to.

There is power to go on
as a vessel of His Love.

I just have to go,
depending on Him.

Any Love, any Light, any Life that He can channel through me is eternally worth it.

I Can Go On

Paul Luckett | Brainflurry.com I Can Go


He didn’t want to.
 
The Christ, the God-Man, the highest form of existence did not want to do what was before Him to do.
 
“O My Father, if it is possible, let this cup pass from Me; nevertheless, not as I will, but as You will.” -Matthew 26:39
 
Yet, His love for the Father and for you and I prevailed. By it, He steeled Himself in the face of unparalleled and incomprehensible suffering and chose to trust and obey the Father, to fulfill His ministry and finish His redemptive work.
 
I am tired. I am frustrated. I am discouraged and this remembrance is an encouragement to me.
 
Surely, with there being even more grace towards us now than there was before (John 4:12), I can endure these comparatively light and momentary afflictions: I can endure fatigue, feelings of failure, discouragement, difficult and devious people. Not seeing the end from the beginning, I can trust the Father, I can hope, I can love, I can work His fields, I can keep my hands to the plow of His redemptive work no matter how small or fruitless my efforts may seem.

I can go on.

Jesus is my example, my model and my guide. He is the person I want to become –to attain to His resurrection, to be like Him: righteous, just, loving, faithful –altogether fit to rule. He is my prize.So, even though I don’t want to right now, I press.

We Have The Wrong Idea About God

Paul Luckett | Brainflurry.com We Have The Wrong Idea About God

We have the wrong idea about God.
Christ was given to correct that.

Judging God by His Old Testament work is like judging a person with bloody hands standing over a gruesome, half-dead body, without the context that they’re the doctor saving their loved one’s life from terminal cancer.

The body is creation and we are the members conscripted by cancer, ravaging it. The treatment of cutting away flesh and blasting areas of infection with radiation, while brutal, is not only understandable, it’s good -done with the purpose to save life.

But, that the Great Physician would invest any time saving cancerous cells; setting some apart and doing millennia of delicate, painstaking surgery to give destructive cells a new Stem so that they would have new life and function properly is astonishing, especially given His ability to utterly wipe out the cancer and start completely over.

But His heart toward mankind was not to utterly destroy us, but to love us and make us whole by being with us. He’s done all that He’s done to the end of this His original purpose, including the vital and righteous work depicted in the Old Testament. But, we shouldn’t stop there. He wasn’t done. It’s not the complete picture. God’s heart is revealed by the completion of His work –His wonderful, glorious, incomprehensible work completed in Jesus Christ.

If I want to have the right idea about God, look to Christ:

Christ in Creation.
Christ in Redemption.
Christ in Recreation.

Who God is becomes more clear when I understand Christ was always the plan.

And, the right idea about God changes everything. #Gospel

52 Weeks of Gratefulness #12 – Martin Coleman

Paul Luckett | Brainflurry.com Thankful For Martin Coleman (Twitter)

In Week 12 of 52 Weeks of Gratefulness, I give thanks for Martin Coleman.

One Sunday after service, Marty Coleman walks up, “Hey Brother Paul. I understand you have a business that does computer work. There is someone I think you should meet.”

He then waves over a young man who seems tired and despondent. His approach toward us from across the room was slow and labored. He’s disheveled. His hair is matted to his head with gel. His clothes are wrinkled like he had just rolled out of bed with them on. His glasses are so hazed, perhaps from the gel in his hair, that I can barely see his eyes.

Though his approach seemed reluctant, when we started talking, he opened up easily enough. He’s a gamer. He knows his way around technology by having built custom and very sophisticated gaming computers. Brother Marty’s hope was that I would be able to give this young man a job.

This is not long after the Great Recession. One of my largest clients, representing twenty-five percent of my business’s income, was a casualty of the economic downturn. I lost them to closure and many of my remaining clients cut their retainers in half. I feel personally responsible for the people that I hire. Each time I extend employment, my heart and philosophy is to provide that person a home either until they are ready to move on or, preferably, until we’ve helped them to advance in their career. I try not to hire anyone unless I feel there’s a good chance that I can provide that.

But, with the cuts, I couldn’t sustain the staff I had and was scrambling to find safe places for each of my employees to land. By the grace of God, opportunities -even better than they had with me opened up for every one of them. I was so thankful and relieved. Anyone that employs people knows that it is no small undertaking; taxes, withholding, reporting -just maintaining the revenue to make payroll is a tremendous burden. After having miracuously averted the near disaster of having to lay staff off, leaving people who are dear to me without means to provide for their families, I was perfectly content to go it alone for a while. I did not have any appetite for hiring anyone else and going through that again.

But, God.

My default position on the proposition of hiring anyone was flatly “no”. But, there was this nagging notion that this wasn’t just about hiring someone. I had a sense that this may be from God. But, I resisted it. It wasn’t anything I wanted to do. Business wasn’t great. I didn’t even know if I could really financially afford another a person but that nagging notion would not relent. I shared it with my wife who said, “If you believe this is something God is leading you to do baby, you need to be open and to trust Him.”

So, I begin to move in the direction I believed God may be leading. I start making calls. I learn that the young man is in recovery from a drug and alcohol addiction, has not long gotten out of prison and is staying with another brother from our fellowship. But, I find myself with a compassion I cannot explain and am moved to keep going. I call the brother that the young man is staying with as a character reference. He candidly and honestly reports, “He’s unreliable, he’s sleeps all day, he’s still drinking and he’s been lying about it.”

The Holy Spirit was like, “I’ll take him.”

I hired the young man that day and it was one of the best decisions I ever made.

God provided and we worked together for years. We did more than work beside each other every day, we shared life. We laughed together -a lot. We studied the Bible together. We battled our demons together. We prayed together. We shared our dreams together. What was dear to him became dear to me and the other way around. To this day I can still feel his intense love for his family, especially his son. From that day it became my heart, to the extent that they will allow me, to treat his family as my own. He did the same for me.

Anyone that knows Melissa and I can attest that we are very particular about who keeps our children. They are a treasure to us. It would not be an exaggeration to say that we’d be reluctant to entrust even the Secret Service with our kids. As a result, we didn’t get out much. Observing that, this young man insisted that Melissa and I have a night to ourselves and volunteered to keep our boys. Having watched this young man grow over the years, we humbly accepted without hesitation or concern.

By the grace of God, the young man that had an addiction was transformed into one of the most diligent, devoted and trustworthy people I’ve ever known. He was among those that I can count on one hand that Melissa and I considered leaving our estate to and making responsible for the care of our children should we both die unexpectedly. He is a true and dearly beloved brother.

He would often gush about the difference I made in his life, not realizing the heavenly shift that God used him to make in mine. I have been continually praying to God to teach me to love the way He loves. God answered my prayer and taught me to love by sending me someone to love .

Moreover, he showed me other believers who did not just love in word but also in deed. They truly behaved as people of one heart and one soul, who had all things in common (Acts 2:44, 4:32). They opened their homes, they opened their hearts and treated this young man’s burdens as if they were their own. Their labor yielded a harvest of new life not only in him, but also in me, revealing to me the authentic Church in power and glory. Thank you Brother Marty for this life changing introduction. I’m eternally grateful. #52WoG

The Deceitfulness Of Riches

Paul Luckett | Brainflurry.com The Deceitfulness Of Riches

For weeks, I’ve intended to:
visit a loved one,
sit with a dear brother,
put in quality family time,
write that note,
make that call,
share that word.

Why haven’t I?

Because I’m occupied with what I have to do to make the money to keep what I’ve got.

And, I’m preoccupied with what I have to do to get more.

“what I have to do…”

I’ve been in bondage.

The world says I can attain the good life if I somehow manage to get the right combination of things. But, Jesus teaches that the things that make for my peace are in knowing the Father and following Him, forsaking all else.

I know the truth, but at some point I again embraced the lie.

This deception offered me fool’s gold, robbing me of what matters most: precious time loving people who are dear to me and dear to God, in exchange for the worthless: a nirvana I might experience some day if I manage to get and do all the right things. (Spoiler alert: It’s a lie. Fulfillment never happens this way.)

Working for more stuff and living more life are in opposite directions. And, I’ve been going the wrong way!

My focus should not be on how to keep what I have or how to get more. My heart should be set upon attending to my Father’s house rather than seeking my own interests and pleasure. When I have the same heart as the Father (as demonstrated by Jesus, His only begotten Son), then my pleasure comes from seeing His house provided for and prospering.

So, I pray “Create in me a clean heart, O God, and renew a right spirit with in me!”.

I’m on a journey now
to lay aside that which ensares me,
to divest myself of what weighs me down,
to sell what I have to share with those who lack,
to live with less so I have more to give:
to follow Jesus.

I repent.