Friday, February 26, 2010

"Living Beyond The Now", by Pastor Kevin Lynch

So many people, including way too many who claim to follow Jesus Christ, are stuck in this place called daily living. Let's call it "The Now".

Yesterday's are the "nows" gone by. Tomorrow is the "now" that may not even happen.

Life in the daily grind, whether past, present or future, is only ever going to become "The Now" at best, and it's not good enough to build our spiritual life upon. It's weak. It's shallow. It's fleeting.

Often time it's hopeless, and rightfully so.

If we have nothing past "The Now" then we are in trouble.

We are in the season of Resurrection. It's the time we reflect upon and commemorate the death and Resurrection of Jesus Christ.

The religious hang all sorts of names and rituals on it. I shy away from the monikers like "Ash Wednesday", "Maundy Thursday", :Good Friday", "Holy Saturday", and of course "Easter Sunday".

I prefer the season of Resurrection, and even that's not good enough because any of it only serves to suggest to people that our lives of following Christ move and shift between high holy days.

In reality every day is a "holy day of obligation" if we are true disciples of Jesus Christ.

I have to chuckle at the "Christmas and Easter" folks who have to sort of "gear up" for Lent and their honorarium to God in giving up chocolate or cigarettes. You would think they were giving up a kidney lol!

My point is that the follower of Christ lives in the Resurrection every day. We are resurrection people because we have been resurrected with Christ in our spirit. We have passed from death to life (John 5:24).

We live for the eternal. It's beyond today. It's beyond tomorrow.

Start understanding your life in those terms and things change.

Eternal living brings faith for the now and hope for tomorrow, because whatever is ahead of us is overshadowed by the reality of the Resurrected Glory!

John 3:36 - "That is why whoever accepts and trusts the Son gets in on everything, life complete and forever! And that is also why the person who avoids and distrusts the Son is in the dark and doesn’t see life. All he experiences of God is darkness, and an angry darkness at that.”

There it is from Jesus Himself. We can "get in on everything", which is complete and forever, or we can live in the darkness of "The Now" which is mere existing.

I think this is a good time of year to contemplate our view of living life, so let's walk it through together over the next couple of weeks.

Be blessed, and here's to new beginnings!

Keepin' it Real,

Pastor Kevin <><

Thursday, February 25, 2010

"What Goes Around Does Not Have To Come Around", by Pastor Kevin Lynch

I'm a contrary. Sometimes because I think I was just born that way, but also that God in His infinite wisdom knew that before He saved me, and has made me a born-again contrary, haha!

Actually I think we all become contrary in our new nature when we receive the Spirit of Christ in us.

Jesus was a contrary. He was contrary to popular religious thoughts and ideals. He was contrary at times to His own surrounding culture. He was contrary to pervasive evil.

He saw things differently, and He has shown us how to look at the world the same way.

So, I always try to test and to see and hear the opposite of what is being portrayed before me. Of course I measure that along the Word of God just to be sure I am being contrary, and not just "difficult".

One of the popular thoughts I always challenge is the negative connotation attached to "What goes around comes around".

If love is going around then I think it will also return and come around.

If it's hatred, sickness, poverty, despair, anxiety, insomnia, addiction, violence, disharmony, and other associated curses, and yes, I mean curses, then no. What has gone around does not have to come your way.

I think all of the above are indeed curses from hell, and they have no place in the lives of the child of God!

This is not to say the enemy will not continue to fire them at us, and with perhaps even one getting through once in awhile. However, we need to renew our minds as Paul told us in Rom. 12, so that we change our thinking to be more according to the work Christ has performed in our spirit.

Rom. 12:2 - "Don't be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, so that you may prove what is the good, well-pleasing, and perfect will of God."

The way we think is critical as to how we will live. The mind is our soul and it is the ground upon which all battles begin.

Remember that. The mind is the place where the battle begins. If you do not take that ground early you risk losing everything. Satan and all the demonic forces need to be confronted and repelled even preemptively before the gates of hell can prevail.

This means our prayer life must be active, our bible study must be in full swing, and our fellowshipping with each other in Christ as often as possible must be prominent.

There is no time better to begin than right now.

Pray with me:" Lord Jesus, thank you for your provision for me today. I do not have to fall victim to the forces of the one who seeks to destroy me. I stand firm today upon the rock of Jesus Christ and I take full authority over my present condition in the name of Jesus Christ! I will not be defeated"! Amen!

We are in this battle together friends, and we will prevail!

Keepin' it Real,

Pastor Kevin <><

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

"Hello, Hello, Is There Anybody Out There?", by Pastor Kevin Lynch

Ever feel like that? Just questioning the darkness and quietness of a lonely situation?

It reminds me of the old Pink Floyd song. "Hello, hello, hello (echo sound effect) is there anybody out there?"

In reality when that happens, we who are familiar with the bible call it a "wilderness experience".

Jesus was familiar with it.

So was John the Baptist.

Check it out:

Mark 1:3 - " The voice of one crying in the wilderness, 'Make ready the way of the Lord! Make his paths straight!'"

It's one thing to experience it once in awhile, but this was John's daily function.

He was THE voice crying out in the places devoid of Jesus and filled with godlessness.

He was the icebreaker. The forerunner. The lead scout into hostile territory.

His job was to prepare the people for the entrance of Jesus Christ.

He didn't appear to get wrapped up in personal issues. He was focused and dedicated to the task.

He wasn't there to win a popularity contest. He was there to prepare the heart of mankind.

We can take a lesson from John. Our present circumstances do not qualify or disqualify us from being a wilderness voice.

The only thing that matters is that we know our purpose and carry it out.

It might seem thankless at times. Not to worry. God deals with the results. We just obey Him.

We are not called to convince anybody. The Holy Spirit is in charge of that. We are just sharing what we have found to be true for our life and present it as simply as we can.

The greatest soul winners were simple people. They weren't theologians, they weren't biblical scholars.

They were people like you. People with issues. People with struggles. Real people with real faith living real lives.

So, just continue to be real. God will use that to His great advantage.

Be blessed today in all that you do!

Keepin' it Real,

Pastor Kevin <><

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

"All Guts, Little Glory", by Pastor Kevin Lynch

Imagine you had a talent that would attract great amounts of attention. Imagine your life ending up making a positive impact in the world so magnanimous that it would be remembered for over 2,000 years. Imagine not receiving any compensation for this great task other than a promise.

Imagine your only reward as being your own head severed from its body and served up on a platter for a king.

Not exactly a job many would apply for on

Tough job, but somebody had to do it.

I am speaking of John the Baptist. The last real prophet of the bible in the Old Testament sense of the word.

Perhaps the job description would go something like this:

*Wanted* - A person with a tenacious spirit willing to work hard for little wages. Must be outspoken and not shy and able to work with large crowds of people in extreme circumstances. Candidate should be an expert communicator who can be heard loudly and clearly. Very basic food and clothing needs will be provided. Job scope is narrow and person must be willing to see it through to completion which will in all likelihood culminate with imprisonment and death.

Line forms at the right. What, no takers?

God had the right man for the job.

Mark 1:1-2 - " The beginning of the Good News of Jesus Christ, the Son of God. (2) As it is written in the prophets, "Behold, I send my messenger before your face, who will prepare your way before you."

I'm not sure if John realized it or not, but he was a trendsetter. He was the first one to show us what it could be like being a disciple of Jesus Christ.

Few of us will be required to make the sacrifices John did, but the tension is always in the willingness.

There is something about doing great things for little earthly reward that is not natural.

We are not wired that way from birth. In fact we are the opposite. If we are going to promote anything vociferously it will generally be about something that will benefit us individually.

In other words, what's in it for me?

Could you be a John the Baptist? Could you adapt to that job description?

John had the attitude of "I must decrease so that He will increase."

He had built up a large personal fan base and turned them all over to Jesus.

Could you unselfishly, fearlessly, and exhaustingly tell the story of Jesus as often as possible for little if any tangible material reward, and never taking any credit for yourself?

Would you if the slightest chance of dying for the cause of Christ was possible?

Dietrich Bonhoeffer, a true 20th century martyr and preacher of the gospel, who was hanged in a Nazi concentration camp, wrote in his book "The Cost of Discipleship", "...when God calls a man He bids him come and die."

First and foremost it is to die to self and to live for Christ, but sometimes we will die physically as well.

What happens is not as important as what we are willing to have happen.

There is no more important a task on earth than expressing and exposing Jesus. It's starting to get to the place where it takes some guts again to be outspoken for Jesus.

If you're OK with all the glory going to Jesus then God has picked another winner.

Keepin' it Real,

Pastor Kevin <><

Monday, February 22, 2010

"The Heritage Of The Believer", by Pastor Kevin Lynch

There are concrete enforceable promises handed down by God to every believer in His Son Jesus Christ.

We are connected to a universal power that confounds every source of evil generated by our enemies (both spiritual as well as physical).

I wish I could convince more people of that critical information.

Listen to the prophet Isaiah today:

Isaiah 54:17
"But no weapon that is formed against you shall prosper, and every tongue that shall rise against you in judgment you shall show to be in the wrong. This [peace, righteousness, security, triumph over opposition] is the heritage of the servants of the Lord [those in whom the ideal Servant of the Lord is reproduced]; this is the righteousness or the vindication which they obtain from Me [this is that which I impart to them as their justification], says the Lord."

That's especially for you today.

It's not just neat advice. It's your heritage of being a member of the family of God.

Perhaps you have heard the big lie generated in the camps of those who defy God and all that He stands for?

The lie is that we are all considered God's children

It's a smart campaign waged by Satan himself.

Nothing could be farther from the truth.

We are not ALL God's children. We are all God's creation, but those estranged to God by their own will and ways are not considered His children.

Only those who have accepted Jesus Christ as their Lord and Savior and have become born again are adopted into His family as co-heirs with Jesus to the riches of heaven.

That heritage also allows us to take advantage of what Isaiah speaks of.

No weapon formed against us will prosper. There will be weapons formed, but they will not be successful.

Slanderers and liars who seek to defame us will not be believed.

We will have peace in the midst of opposition.

We are justified and vindicated of all wrongdoing we have confessed to Him and have been washed as white as snow.

That's got to be good news for someone out there today!

If so, give it a hearty AMEN!

Keepin' it Real,

Pastor Kevin <><

Thursday, February 18, 2010

"The Human Point Of View", by Pastor Kevin Lynch

Have you contemplated who you are? Where you have come from? Where you are headed?

Is your view of life strictly confined by your own human point of view?

We are certainly all human. However, we are also supernatural. We have bodies that will eventually turn back to dust, but we have spirits and souls which will live forever.

Each of us are creations of God. Our finite bodies will pretty much stay the way they are save for aging, weight gain or loss, sickness, etc. They serve the purposes of God which is to carry around our infinite spirit and soul (mind).

The finite and the infinite. We are walking talking paradoxes.

So, what and how we think effect our view of Jesus Christ.

How do you understand Jesus today? From a finite human viewpoint, or a supernatural infinite viewpoint.

I submit to you this morning that you cannot really ever get to know Jesus until you get out of the flesh way of thinking and into the supernatural spirit way of thinking.

Read what Paul says about knowing Jesus:

1 Cor.5:16 - "Consequently, from now on we estimate and regard no one from a [purely] human point of view [in terms of natural standards of value]. [No] even though we once did estimate Christ from a human viewpoint and as a man, yet now [we have such knowledge of Him that] we know Him no longer [in terms of the flesh]."

Powerful, life changing stuff right there in front of you.

I strongly suggest that you read and then re-read that verse as many times as needed to ensure you get it deep down in your spirit.

How you view and understand Christ effects every part of your daily existence.

You have to train yourself to see everything through the supernatural side of your born-again life. Resist strictly seeing things through your sensory oriented carnal (flesh, human) side.

Practice living and walking in the supernatural spirit side of who you are, which is essentially the real you.

The body is a transport vehicle. Your eternal infinite soul and spirit is who you are and that is going to live forever.

For an intimate relationship with Christ you have to get past "estimating" Him in your human finite way.

You have to move to "contemplating" Him in the spirit.

That's essentially what Paul is saying. We once only knew Jesus in a historical context.

Now we need to know Him intimately and personally and it must be done in the spirit.

I think that's where people get hung up. They are trying to forge a typical human relationship with Someone who is not typical.

The very next verse explains why that is:

17 - "Therefore if any person is [ingrafted] in Christ (the Messiah) he is a new creation (a new creature altogether); the old [previous moral and spiritual condition] has passed away. Behold, the fresh and new has come!"

We who have accepted Jesus have become changed. We are a brand new (not reconstituted) creation.

Since that is the truth it stands to reason that we must act according to our new spiritual nature.

In other words, you are changed. Act like it.

Maybe this is too deep for you today. That's okay. Start slow. Meditate on the verse prayerfully. Contemplate quietly the possibilities. Act upon the revealed knowledge that the Holy Spirit gives you.

Do this and I personally guarantee you will step to a higher level of living with Jesus Christ!

Be blessed!

Keepin' it Real,

Pastor Kevin <><

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

"God Is Always Fair", by Pastor Kevin Lynch

We left off yesterday with the story of the death of Moses, and how God had allowed Moses to see the promised land from afar but not enter it.

Deut. 32:52 - "For you shall see the land opposite you at a distance, but you shall not go there, into the land which I give the Israelites."

On the surface it just doesn't seem fair by our human and finite understanding.

We need to realize that God is always fair. He always does the right thing.

Moses was denied something in his flesh because he had a failure of the flesh that risked everything God was trying to do for Israel.

However, God never abandoned Moses.

In fact, when we turn to the next book of the bible, which is Joshua, we find God praising Moses and instructing Joshua to carry on just as Moses would have.

In the flesh Moses was allowed to see but not enter the promised land.

In his death and resurrected spirit he was entering the Promised Land.

You see, there is the "promised land" and the "Promised Land".

One is a metaphor of the other.

What we gather from the story of the Israelites is a story of redemption.

On the smaller scale, the microcosm so to speak, it is the rescue of a tribe of people from captivity.

On the larger scale, the macrocosm, and as a parallel, we have the redemption of the human race.

It is all found in Moses.

As the leader of the Israelites he failed in his flesh and was denied in the flesh.

As a believer in God he was rewarded spiritually and was able to see the true Promised Land, the heaven that all believers will see.

Heaven is our Canaan Land. It's our promised reward.

While we may waver or fail in our flesh our redemption remains intact as long as we do not fail to be absorbed in Christ.

Moses' flesh got the best of him, but he was always absorbed in God.

Thank God He judges our hearts and not the stupid things we do. He will always acknowledge the penitent heart that belongs to Him.

"For the Lord sees not as man sees; for man looks on the outward appearance, but the Lord looks on the heart." (1 Samuel 16:7).

Protect your heart today, the centrality of your very being. It is a precious item. Make sure it belongs to Jesus Christ.

Keepin' it Real,

Pastor Kevin <><

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

"Sometimes It Just Doesn't Seem Fair", by Pastor Kevin Lynch

Who served God better than Moses? I mean the guy was steadfast and solid for about 80 years in leading the Israelites out of captivity, wandering through the desert for 40 of those years listening to and trying to appease the whining and dissatisfaction of the Israelites. He fought battles and risked life and limb, and it could be said he was one of the most successful leaders in all of world history.

Yet, the one thing he most desired, and that at the end of a very long life of 120 years, was to walk freely into the land God had promised would belong to Israel.

Yes, the one thing he desired more than anything was to see Canaan land and it was the one thing that God denied him.

One little minor infraction during the wandering years in the desert kept him from his hearts desire.

What did he do? He failed to trust God and tried to produce something on his own.

He tapped a rock with a stick looking for water.

Pretty insignificant sounding, huh?

Not to God it wasn't. God was trying to build faith in hundreds of thousands of people in a critical situation and he was using Moses to accomplish it. When Moses failed to obey God it made God "look bad". It made it look like Moses had more power or more knowledge about taking care of the people than God did.

When we disobey God, when we show off and make Him look bad or foolish there will be repercussions.

There may be forgiveness forthcoming, but forgiveness often does not revoke the punishment or penalty.

We are held responsible for our actions.

Sometimes it just doesn't seem fair.

Deut. 32:51 - "Because you broke faith with Me in the midst of the Israelites at the waters of Meribah-kadesh in the Wilderness of Zin and because you did not set Me apart as holy in the midst of the Israelites. (52) For you shall see the land opposite you at a distance, but you shall not go there, into the land which I give the Israelites."

Moses' punishment was exactly what God told him it would be. You will see the land from afar, but you will never walk on it.

You may look, but don't touch.

Moses died on that mountain top, and the privilege of leading the Israelites into Canaan was given to Moses' right hand man and main military leader, Joshua.

Perhaps he died from old age. More than likely his broken heart was a contributor. However, in all of that Moses remained true to God and we can be assured that he is with God today in His Paradise. Moses was such a strong figure of faith in God that the devil and Michael the Archangel struggled over his body (Jude 1:9).

We struggle over the harshness associated with what appears to be a minor infraction. However, God knows better than we do all of the time.

I believe God did not get any pleasure out of punishing Moses. I do believe that there was much at stake and it went beyond Moses. God was trying to establish a much needed authority and if he had to sacrifice Moses to accomplish that then so be it. God knew Moses could handle it.

Could you handle it? Or would you stomp your feet and cry and whine? Would you pull up the stakes of your tent and move to greener pastures? Or would you accept the penalty maturely and still love and serve God?

It happens sometimes in our lives and we may not even recognize it. God will chastise us. He will discipline us. He will deny us pleasures and shiny objects. He will see far down the road for us and deny us the things that we may not see as harmful.

He must. That discipline is a sign of love and caring.

Sometimes it just doesn't seem fair. We must rest assured that God knows what is fair and what is best.

His grace must be sufficient, and when we recognize that and abide by it we advance strongly.

Be blessed!

Keepin' it Real,

Pastor Kevin <><

Monday, February 15, 2010

"Good Thief, Bad Thief", by Pastor Kevin Lynch

Luke 23:33 - "...they came to the place which is called The Skull [Latin: Calvary; Hebrew: Golgotha], there they crucified Him, and [along with] the criminals, one on the right and one on the left."

So much is contained within the facts of the crucifixion of Jesus Christ that one could make a lifetime of study and teaching from that alone.

One of the more intriguing scenarios out of the drama that unfolded that day is the placement of Jesus' cross.

The bible says He was placed between two "criminals", or "thieves".

Some ancient apocryphal literature even names the malefactors and their placement around Jesus as well.

It is believed that the thief on His left was Gestas (the bad thief), and on His right was Dysmas (the good thief).

The metaphorical insinuations are incredible!

It is as if God was directing a play and had the players situated according to a script.

We would not be far off in that understanding, as God knew exactly what was unfolding as well as how, why, and where.

When we visualize the crucifixion on Calvary (the Place of the Skull, also not without its own metaphorical value) we see a picture gallery of what our own relationship is with Jesus.

Jesus spoke in the gospels about either being for or against Him, or, being attached to Him or disengaged from Him, etc.

A huge portion of the gospel in a nutshell.

The Bad Thief mocked Jesus as He hung there bleeding out.

(39) "One of the criminals who was suspended kept railing at Him, saying, Are You not the Christ (the Messiah)? Rescue Yourself and us from death]!"

Gestas was not recognizing Jesus as Messiah. He was ridiculing His claims by mockingly challenging Jesus to save them all.

Dysmas on the other hand showed reverence.

(40) "But the other one reproved him, saying, Do you not even fear God, seeing you yourself are under the same sentence of condemnation and suffering the same penalty? (41) And we indeed suffer it justly, receiving the due reward of our actions; but this Man has done nothing out of the way [nothing ] strange or eccentric or perverse or unreasonable]. (42) Then he said to Jesus, Lord, remember me when You come in Your kingly glory!"

The Bad Thief showed nothing in the way of repentance and acceptance of Jesus.

The Good Thief has within his words all of the elements necessary to attain forgiveness from sin and secure salvation.

Jesus' reply to Dysmas the Good Thief is, "And He answered him, Truly I tell you, today you shall be with Me in Paradise."

At the start of the day Jesus was the only righteous Person being executed. The two thieves were both "bad thieves".

By the end of the day there were two righteous men on their way to Glory. Jesus was already going, but because of Dysmas' proclamation of faith he was getting to go with Him!

That's each and every one of us. At the start of the day we were both "bad thieves". In the end many of us are forgiven and reconciled.

We are on the side of something. There is no gray area, no DMZ. There is no fence to straddle while we make up our mind.

We are either for Jesus or against Him. One choice nullifies the other whatever the choice may be.

Be blessed today all of you "Good Thieves"!

Keepin' it Real,

Pastor Kevin <><

Friday, February 12, 2010

"Lost And Found", by Pastor Kevin Lynch

Luke 15:32 - "But it was fitting to make merry, to revel and feast and rejoice, for this brother of yours was dead and is alive again! He was lost and is found!"

There's a different kind of reveling going on here.

This is not the riotous living the prodigal experienced when he blew everything he had.

This is a reveling on earth and in heaven.

This is the rejoicing of a soul coming home to the Father.

There is a grand party in heaven when a person returns to God.

I was lost. You were lost. Perhaps you are reading this and are still out there apart from God.


The good news is that I was found! Many of you were found! If not, the greatest news you will ever hear is that you don't have to remain lost either.

God wants you back!

John Newton was so excited that he wrote a song about it:

Amazing grace! How sweet the sound
That saved a wretch like me.
I once was lost, but now am found,
Was blind but now I see.

Lost and found.

The Soul Recycling Center Of The Universe.

The return deposit is the Body and Blood of Jesus Christ.

Bought and paid for by Jesus.

Amazing grace.

Keepin' it Real,

Pastor Kevin <><

Thursday, February 11, 2010

"A Prodigal Plan", by Pastor Kevin Lynch

Luke 15:18 - "I will get up and go to my father, and I will say to him, Father, I have sinned against heaven and in your sight."

Good plan. Excellent strategy. You've screwed your life up and now you want to make it right.

Who ya' gonna call? (Hollywood cliche #1)

Well, who loves ya', baby? (Hollywood cliche #2)

There it is. Straight from the pig sty of failed schemes and plans.

I will get up and go to God. I will tell Him how sorry I am and how I have come to recognize my faults. I will recognize how I have forced Him to grieve over a diminished wretch.

I will simply present myself as an object in need of His grace and forgiveness.

And I shall receive it.

That might be the most important part. Know that you shall receive it.

"If we [freely] admit that we have sinned and confess our sins, He is faithful and just (true to His own nature and promises) and will forgive our sins [dismiss our lawlessness] and [continuously] cleanse us from all unrighteousness [everything not in conformity to His will in purpose, thought, and action]." (1 John 1:9)

There's a lot of freedom in that verse. Perhaps the greatest passage in the bible. Certainly up there in the Top 10.

What happens in the sty stays in the sty. That is until we decide to change. No one crawls out of the slime until they say "Enough!".

Freely admit. Of your own will and accord.

We first have to break free from our own nature of sin and evil and God will then be true to His nature.

We need forgiveness. He will forgive.

How's that for simple?

Now, mix in your desire to change and the process is complete.

Keepin' it Real,

Pastor Kevin <><

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

"The Devil's Buffet", by Pastor Kevin Lynch

Luke 15:15-16 - "(15) So he went and hired himself out to one of the citizens of that country, who sent him into his fields to feed pigs. (16) And he was longing to be fed with the pods that the pigs ate, and no one gave him anything."

Promises of greener pastures. Lured away from the comfort and security of his father's house by the lust of the flesh.

Wine, women, song. Eat, drink, be merry. The world, the flesh, the devil.

All the buzzwords fit.

The Prodigal Son was feeling his oats and he felt he needed to sow a few wild ones.

Bottom line? He blew it. Big time.

Nothing worked out. He satiated his carnal desires and like it often goes, when the money runs out so do all of your so called "friends". One can hear Satan chuckling in the background.

The young man secures a position as hog slopper at a local pig sty and reaches the final degradation.

Let's not forget that back in that day a young Jewish man slopping hogs is quite a defilement.

The true bottom however is when the muddy, feces covered corn husks start to look good enough to eat.

A real devil's buffet. Down home cookin' from the way down.

Sin, selfishness, self-aggrandizement, will always eat your lunch. The pig sty is always the alternative to Kingdom living.

I don't know how many corn husks you have to eat before God's house looks good to you.

I feasted at the trough of despair for 20 years before I fell on my knees.

I know which side of the bread is buttered now. I'm not going back. Never.

Someone dear to me once said she was "all in" when it came to serving Christ.

Yeah, that's it...I'm all in. Lock, stock and double barrel, I am ALL IN.

Are you "all in"? Everything you are? Everything you own? Everything you hope to be? All in?

If not, remember...when you are not all in for Jesus Christ you are all in for something lesser, and something lesser is never as good.

Be blessed today! Build a snowman.

Keepin' it Real,

Pastor Kevin <><

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

"May Day From The Distant Country", by Pastor Kevin Lynch

It's bad enough to get soft and flabby in our physical bodies, which is the result of sedentary lifestyle, age, illness, etc.

It's an entirely different issue when we allow that to happen in our spiritual life.

I liked the translation of one of the verses from the bible I used yesterday so much that I decided to use it again.

James 5:5
"[Here] on earth you have abandoned yourselves to soft (prodigal) living and to [the pleasures of] self-indulgence and self-gratification. You have fattened your hearts in a day of slaughter."

Everything in that verse that we know is harmful to our body is also harmful to our spirit and soul as well.

In fact, it could be said that this verse is metaphorical, which is a common method used throughout the bible.

The parable of the Prodigal Son is representative of every person who has ever established a relationship with God and Jesus Christ as Savior.

From that parable in Luke:

Luke 15:13 - "And not many days after that, the younger son gathered up all that he had and journeyed into a distant country, and there he wasted his fortune in reckless and loose [from restraint] living."

Perhaps you will need some convincing today, but this verse is speaking about you.

It is the common human condition of all mankind before they acknowledge where they have come from, where they are presently, and where they need to return to.

There is no deviation. It is the one thing we all share in common with each other. We have all sinned and have fallen short of the glory of God. There is no one who has ever been righteous and without sin. Not one single one. Except Jesus Christ Himself.

Simply put, we are all Prodigals who have strayed away and need to come home to God.

I want to develop this over the next few days.

For now let's leave it at this.

Are you nestled into the comfort of your home with God in the Kingdom on earth?

Or are you living a life of despair in the distant country?

Where have you come from? Where are you now? Where are you headed?

This is a fundamental question that needs to be answered and for many never will be.

I can picture smiles or frowns this morning.

I pray that most are smiles.

Keepin' it Real,

Pastor Kevin <><

Monday, February 8, 2010

"Fattened Hearts In A Day Of Slaughter", by Pastor Kevin Lynch

Proverbs 4:19
"The way of the wicked is like deep darkness; they do not know over what they stumble."

What to do with all of these poor souls stumbling around in the dark.

"Forgive them Father, for they know not what they do."

The sadness in their eyes. The striving to extract a few moments of joy and happiness out of a life of self seeking futility.


Eat, drink, be merry. Tomorrow we return to reality and it will be looming larger and staring us right in the face.

I once heard a person exclaim, "Why go on vacation? It just makes me hate my life more when I return."

That there is the stuff drug addicts and alcoholics are made out of. Believe me I know.

It's also pretty much anyone who is searching to fill the void.

Until it's filled with Jesus it will not satisfy.

This is the plight of the spiritually clumsy. Since we are all spirit beings in an earth suit, we will never quite feel at home until we return from our exodus from God.

Spiritual prodigals sloshing around in one pig sty after another.

It is painful to look into the eyes of the desperate and know that they are in a far country.

Want a stark reality check this morning?

"[Here] on earth you have abandoned yourselves to soft (prodigal) living and to [the pleasures of] self-indulgence and self-gratification. You have fattened your hearts in a day of slaughter (James 5:5)."

Fattened hearts in a day of slaughter.

I purposely place myself in the midst of the slaughterhouse as often as I can. I want to be near the death. I want the Life in me to cut through the darkness.

I think I understand why Jesus spent so much time there.

He wanted to feel their pain. Smell their despair. Comfort their sorrow of just having to be alive.

John Wesley became aware of his narrow ministry as an Anglican priest in a stuffy church environment and took to the roadways proclaiming, "The world is my parish!".

Thomas Paine once wrote, "These are the times that try men's souls."

Oh yes. Indeed.

The trying of the soul has always needed the comforting of a soul.

That's what Jesus does.

His Holy Spirit is A.K.A. The Comforter

Do you need to be comforted today? Or perhaps you would allow God to use you as an agent of comfort?

The world is a sick room and it needs a Great Physician.

From the slaughterhouse,

Keepin' it Real,

Pastor Kevin

Friday, February 5, 2010

"The Ancient Contradiction", by Pastor Kevin Lynch

Genesis 3:4 - "But the serpent said to the woman, You shall not surely die".

There it is. A statement as old as humanity itself.

We could call it the first bad advice ever given and acted upon.

The first sin.

The first lie.

The first time man exercised his own free will negatively against God.

After all, Genesis is the "Beginning" of everything.

God said if Adam and Eve did the one thing He told them not to, that they would die, first of all spiritually, and eventually mortally.

The Serpent said "Not so. You will not die. Go ahead and challenge God."

Not a good choice for them, and not good for the rest of the human race that followed.

If we survey the past history of our existence and the present climate, it's been a rough few thousand years.

Since that fateful day:

There has never been complete peace on this planet. Never.

There has never been freedom from the threat of sickness and disease. Never.

There has never been prosperity and financial freedom for all. Never.

There has never been enough food and shelter for the masses. Never.

Instead, the perfect plan of God for peace, harmony, joy, wealth, health, etc., has all gone awry.

It has been replaced with war, pestilence, disease, poverty, racism, hatred, greed, jealousy.

This is why we need Jesus.

He brings what we lack to the human condition.

Even as the world may seem to be disintegrating around us, the heart of the follower of Christ is at peace and has joy.

Any goodness that can be found on this planet today is the direct result of the presence of the Body of Christ.

If it was not for that goodness there would be no true goodness at all.

We have not really ever gazed upon the face of true chaos and anarchy. Remove the influence of Christ and the Holy Spirit as the "Restrainer", and it would all become too unbearable to exist.

It should heighten our awareness and give fuller meaning to "Thank God."

Keepin' it Real,

Pastor Kevin <><

Thursday, February 4, 2010

"Where Are You?", by Pastor Kevin Lynch

Come out, come out wherever you are.

Most of us recall those innocent words from childhood games.

"Where are you?" seems innocent enough as well.

I've been asked that from time to time by members of my own household as to inquire of my whereabouts. Am I upstairs? Downstairs? Hiding from my wife? (lol!).

In fact, I can hardly see any negative connotations to the question.

Except one.

I would not want to hear that question from God.

He asked the very same question of Adam way back when Adam and Eve were the only two people on earth.

Genesis 3:9 - "But the Lord God called to Adam and said to him, Where are you?"

Adams response?

"I was hiding from You."

The question of "Where are you?" becomes a very serious spiritual issue because if God has to ask you that question then it indicates a breech, a separation between you and Him.

That's exactly what happened to Adam.

He sinned and immediately was consumed by guilt and fear so He attempted to hide from God.

He tried the impossible.

The question should not be interpreted this morning as to ponder that God could possibly lose track of us, or that we could fall off His radar.

Along with the question of discussion today we also see that God followed up the question with two more.

"Who told you that you were naked?", and "What have you done?"

He already knew the answers to all of those questions.

He was trying to get Adam and Eve to face their wrongdoing.

What ensued was the first installment of "the blame game."

Adam blamed Eve, Eve blamed the serpent, and they both blamed God.

This is why the question of "Where are you?" in my opinion, has less to do with geographical location than it does with the spiritual state of Adam and Eve. It is also designed to help them diagnose where they went wrong and why.

"Where are you?" can be applied to ourselves this morning.

Where are you with God? Have you become separated? Are you trying to hide from God? Are the lies and excuses building up so high that you are running out of people and things to blame?

You see, God knows exactly where you are today. The question is designed for you to make the discovery.

Make the discovery and rectify. Make the discovery and build on it.

That's why God sent Jesus. Paul called Him "the second Adam". He is the "cleaner". He makes it all ok.

We have that luxury. Adam didn't.

You have an Advocate.

Keepin' it Real,

Pastor Kevin <><

Wednesday, February 3, 2010

"King Of Useless Information", by Pastor Kevin Lynch

I joke about that often as I apply the title to myself.

I have a storehouse of what I refer to as "useless information" rattling around in my brain, and I am able to regurgitate it in a moments notice solicited or not.

Over 56 years I have read the equivalent of a public library in books, watched thousands of hours of television, and the advent of the internet is an info nut's dream.

Somehow it all got stuck in my head.

I'm sure it's not all useless. It might even be mostly useful at the right time for the right purpose.

I say anything is useless that does not profit a person in some fashion.

But even then what we have sought after as profitable may serve to be the very thing that stands in the way of the most important thing in our life.

Jesus spoke about this in the gospel of Matthew.

Matthew 16:26
"For what will it profit a man if he gains the whole world and forfeits his life [his blessed life in the kingdom of God]? Or what would a man give as an exchange for his [blessed] life [in the kingdom of God]?"

If we were able to "have it all", and to enjoy great wealth and exceeding knowledge and wisdom, but lost or not gained our salvation in the Kingdom of God, Jesus says it would actually be considered not profitable.

Material or intellectual profit is not a fair trade for one's soul.

Since many view it as an intangible, the things we touch, smell, see, hear, and speak about is all the reality the common man, the unregenerated sinner, is ever really going to know.

It is the epitome of sensory oriented living. It's all we've ever known until we discovered life in the Spirit.

I think it may very well be the hardest truth to to get across to folks.

I'll expand on this at a later time, but for now the critical message is to stop selling your eternal soul for temporal earthly profit.

There's nothing wrong with living comfortably, but not if the reality of your eternal life has to be sacrificed.

If you are faced with a choice between fleeting momentary comforts or ill gotten gain and Jesus, always choose Jesus.

Keepin' it Real,

Pastor Kevin <><

Tuesday, February 2, 2010

"When Everything Just Seems Flat", by Pastor Kevin Lynch

There may be some things that are better flat. Like bread.

I can personally attest today that tires are definitely better inflated and round.

Basketballs are no good when flat.

Soda tastes bad when it goes flat.

Followers of Jesus Christ who go flat in their spiritual life is not very good either.

Luke 14:34
"Salt is good [an excellent thing], but if salt has lost its strength and has become saltless (insipid, flat), how shall its saltness be restored?"

Jesus likens us to salt. Once the saltiness is gone (or goes flat) what good is it?

The insinuation that it may not be able to be restored is disturbing.

Basketballs and tires can be pumped up with air.

Unless they are full of holes.

Some folks are full of holes. They can't retain the Spirit of God. He blows through them instead of filling them.

They get "pumped up" for a bit and then deflate and go "flat" after a season.

I find that this happens when our desire to follow Christ is more of a fad. Or when one turns to Jesus only during times of stress and difficulty.

There is no steadiness. No spiritual good health.

Jesus spoke often in the gospels of leaving the things that kept us bound and useless spiritually and never looking back.

He said we will leave our mothers and fathers.

He said we would not even allow the death and burial of a loved one interfere with following Him.

He said we would walk away from even the largest fortunes to be His disciple.

He said we would put our shoulder to the plow and never look back on the ground we already have turned.

There is only Him before us. Our eyes are ever upon Him.

Do you have holes? Are you leaking? Deflated? Flat?

I think there is a danger zone we can reach where the flatness cannot be restored.

I also think that there are many opportunities along the way where we are given chances to achieve spiritual health.

Maybe this is your wake up call this morning?

Be blessed! Be filled!

Keepin' it Real,

Pastor Kevin <><

Monday, February 1, 2010

"It's Hardly Ever The Butler", by Pastor Kevin Lynch

One of the great cliches in the long history of the mystery novel and movie is that "the butler did it".

I would like to know exactly how many times the butler was the culprit in all of the thousands of mystery novels written and movies produced.

I'll wager it was only a few. Yet, people have been trained by that to look past the deeper likelihood that someone else committed the crime because the "butler" is the most obvious suspect.

One thing we know is that in all mysteries, even the great mystery of life and death, it's seldom the obvious.

It's that way also in the study of the Word of God.

People shy away from the study of the Word because they don't understand it as written sometimes, and they are unwilling to put any effort into unraveling the mystery.

It takes discipline and desire and many people want to live vicariously off of the desires and disciplines of others.

Ephesians 1:17 (AMP)
"[For I always pray to] the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of glory, that He may grant you a spirit of wisdom and revelation [of insight into mysteries and secrets] in the [deep and intimate] knowledge of Him."

Yeah, that's what I pray for too.

Spiritual dullness takes the intrusion of the Holy Spirit in a very supernatural way to transform a person from thinking "the butler did it" to getting deep into the mystery of the revelation in order to discover the secrets.

Everyone needs to "solve for X" in their life, especially when X = upside down.

Should one always just throw their hands up and yield to defeat?

Yielding to God is not a sign of defeat or giving up.

Yielding to God is refusing to not solve the mystery and settle for a pat solution.

Yielding to God is opening the mind to a higher intelligence and having it filled with wisdom and revelation.

If you pray for it and yield to it God will build it into you.

Insight. Revelation. Deep knowledge into the mysteries, secrets, and knowledge of God.

This is the stuff that Adam tried to get illegally and which has now become available through the sacrifice and intervention of Jesus Christ.

Yeah, and you thought it was all just about some cute bible stories. The good stuff lies below the surface like any real treasure does.

Start mining for it.

Keepin' it Real,

Pastor Kevin <><