Friday, September 12, 2014

Liar, Liar, Pants On Fire!

Picture it being the holiday season and you aren't cooking. You are an invited guest to someone else's house where you know the meal is going to be delicious. You have anticipated the evening the moment you received the invite. As you enter the home, being greeted by the host, the house is beautifully decorated but it pales in comparison to the wonderful smells wafting from the kitchen and embracing the pangs of your stomach. It smells so good, you have to ask what's on the menu. The host tells you all of the things you were hoping for and so many of them are your favorites. You skipped lunch for this meal and she tells you, it won't be long now. The other guests have some mindless chatter that you try to be gracious mingling into but your mind is on one thing and finally she comes back to the room to tell everyone - dinner is served.

When taking your seat, you see the formal table is set to have more then one course. That's fine by you because you came to chow down. Out of the kitchen comes a staff to serve. Man, she has really gone all out for this dinner party! The plates are all covered and placed in front of all of the guests. When the covers are lifted what is revealed are jars of warmed baby food. Each of the labels are the exact things the host said was on the menu. A little puzzled you look up to the host hoping this is all a joke but the guests are delighted and the host is telling the staff not to forget the bottles of milk making sure the nipple holes are big enough to enjoy the beverage. Feeling like you entered Bizarre-o World, do you act like its normal and enjoy the meal like everyone else? Do you ask your host off to the side, what is going on? Or do you stand and excuse yourself to leave because there is no way this meal is going to sustain you? Funny, why doesn't anyone think of these things while sitting in church service expecting a sermon that will make a difference in their lives.

I woke early this morning and instead of lying in bed, I went to the family room and turned on the t.v. to hear a Word from God. A few well known ministers were scheduled to speak and I was looking forward to hearing what I had missed. One of the messages I heard was absolutely on point and I had to take a little time to ponder on what she said. I took a few mental notes to make some changes in my life. Its what we expect when going to church every week. That was an excellent appetizer. Now for the full course. The other speaker was on a different channel. I quickly tuned in. The program began with him already into the message so I needed to really listen in order to see where he was going with it. He mentioned the fight of faith we all have to go through and must still endure especially when people who are close to you are acting like they don't have the good sense God gave them. Then he said something that took the first portion of the message and messed it all up. He said, "...but the devil is a lie."

He might have said something poignant to match up with that statement but my point is, why say that at all? Who cares? We all understand who and what the devil is (John 8:44 AMP). What purpose is it to keep bringing him up? Is it a filler? Does it take up time? What does it serve to use the devil in any message? Afterwards, the speaker directed the congregants to give God a crazy praise. This not only took more time but allowed for the speaker to run from one side of the altar to the other. Did he run out of words? Was there nothing left for him to say? Had he not noticed that these tactics no longer work? For the most part, the congregants were watching him but the crazy praise which used to be all of the people practically running around the church was more of a dismal wail and a wave of the hand.

Ministers, speakers, evangelists, prophets, pastors, teachers, and all else including themselves in administering God's Word, must realize that while God is the same yesterday, today, and forever - His people are not. We, as Christians, change to be more like Him. Unless you start doing that change too for the betterment of the bride, you will see where all of that devil talk will get you. Now while you gather all of your theological armor to dispute the purpose in talking about the devil so much, I invite you to open your concordance and gander at how many times the devil is mentioned in the Word (57X). Now see how many times Jesus is mentioned (983X). Compare how many times the words thief and Lord are mentioned in the bible. Compare how many times the words liar and savior are mentioned in the bible. With this information, look back at the sermons you have spoken and compare how many times you have mentioned those same words. On the average, are your sermons equivalent to the Word of God? Check yourself!!!

Jesus is the ultimate over comer. He conquered the flesh, death, and the devil. He defeated it all!!! He gave us the whole armor to do the same and guess what? It will never be as difficult as what He did for us! Yes, it will be hard, but only at first because we must understand what He did and why He did it. Once we have the understanding - we overcome too!!! The difficulty of it all is done...we are over comers too! We are more then conquerors through Christ Jesus!!! How hard is that to preach? Now that's good news and worthy of some RADICAL PRAISE!!!

We have not forgotten the 23rd Psalm. The Lord is my Shepherd, I shall not want. Don't have me come to church services only to run out to another church for some fast food! He prepared a table before me in the presence of mine enemies. If the food is already prepared, then there doesn't need any remixing of any other recipes. Serve only what He has prepared and there will always be enough time to eat, to fellowship, and enjoy. Its time out for the stale excuse that the speaker has so much to say and not enough time to say it. You aren't fooling anyone! In God, there is more then enough. If you don't have enough time to minister what the Lord has prepared....maybe its not what the Lord prepared!

Now here is where the rubber meets the road: that table already prepared, its in the presence of mine enemies. I often wondered about that. Greater is He that is in me then he that is in the world (1 John 4:4 AMP). Those that love the world are an enemy to God (James 4:4 AMP). When you preach your message, do you make that separation from what the world wants as opposed what God has called you to serve? Is it really a difficult decision? But I thought that decision was already made when you chose life. Why are we still going over this same old stuff (Ezekiel 34 AMP)?

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