Monday, February 28, 2011

"Be Careful of the Evil Eye!"

The "Evil Eye".  Sounds pretty scary, right? Well, maybe if "Plan Nine From Outer Space" is your favorite movie! lol!

Seriously though, Jesus speaks about it.

He makes one of His famous analogies. Good eye/bad eye.

Matthew 6:22-23 (AMP) - "(22) The eye is the lamp of the body. So if your eye is sound, your entire body will be full of light."

What is your attraction. What you desire is reflected in who you are.

What do people see when they look into your eyes?  Do they see the Light? Jesus Christ? Gospel purity? Love of God? 

That's what they should see in the person who is sold out to and living for Jesus Christ.

"I have been crucified with Christ, and Christ lives in me" (Gal. 2:20).

If Christ lives in you that is who people will see.

They will love you or hate you.

Then there is the flipside.

"(23) But if your eye is unsound, your whole body will be full of darkness. If then the very light in you [your conscience] is darkened, how dense is that darkness!"

Attractiveness to the darkness. Sometimes it could look "evil". A persons entire countenance could change to reflect the evil they love. 

Dense, thick darkness. That's gotta look bad.

It could be masked though, and masquerade as something good. It even shows up in churches. Sometimes it starts churches. Satan loves the "ol' switcheroo".

That's why the Light has to shine so brightly. The Darkness is thick. It has to be to conceal the true horror that is going on behind it. If people could see into the true dark side of evil before they made their choices, few would serve it.

Satan loves secrecy. 

Jesus IS The Light. No secrets. It's all lived out in the open.

Let that light of Christ shine through you today. Dispel the darkness one corner, one crevice, at a time.

Keepin' it Real,

Pastor Kevin <><

Thursday, February 24, 2011

"Walk It Off, Kid"

When I woke up on the field I remember seeing the school doctor leaning over me with a cigarette dangling out of the corner of his mouth. I just suffered a collision with another player which felt like it took my right arm down the field as the rest of me went forward. I actually asked the question of whether my arm was still attached. I was assured that it was and next came the advice that only a doctor with a cigarette dangling out of his mouth could give: "Walk it off, kid."

No x-ray. No follow up visit. We now know today that the injury was serious. The capsule is cracked. The rotator cuff is torn. The labrum is torn. There are dozens of pieces of little white flecks that show up on the x-ray which have been identified as bone chips. There is also this huge part of the shoulder that is slightly darker than the rest. It looks to me like it belongs there. The doctor assures me it does not. It's a monstrous calcium deposit. It looks like the iceberg that sunk the Titanic.

I've been living with this for almost 42 years working through the increasing pain as time goes on. Finally, I had some arthroscopic suregery a few years ago to "clean it out". It worked for awhile, but the pain gradually started to come back.

Walk it off, kid.

I believe I received my brand new shoulder on Sunday! I gave it to God as a young lady laid hands on it and brought the fire of healing into it (thanks Marissa!). I felt heat. Fire. The pain left. I can move my shoulder in positions I couldn't before. I am healed.

I'm done "walking it off".  I was pursuing the mere gratification of the flesh. I should have been pursuing, chasing after, the desires of the Spirit which would have healed me a lot sooner.

Sometimes you think you have it all covered.  Then you see that you don't. I had brought healing to many, yet I couldn't get it myself. My focus was wrong even though I was sure I was squarely in His will. I was obsessing with the flesh (shoulder pain) and allowing it to take my focus off the Spirit.

Romans 8:5 (AMP) - "For those who are according to the flesh and are controlled by its unholy desires set their minds on and pursue those things which gratify the flesh, but those who are according to the Spirit and are controlled by the desires of the Spirit set their minds on and seek those things which gratify the [Holy] Spirit."

It's about Who is controlling us. What we are most concerned about. Where our affinity lies.

It's Jesus. If we shift that away from Him even momentarily, and place it upon even something that appears to be innocent, we put ourselves at risk. Even pain can be that shiny object the devil uses to distract.

Keepin' it Real,

Pastor Kevin <><

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

"Quid, Me Anxius Sum?"

Thank you Alfred E. Neuman. You were probably the first one who injected into the soft gray matter of an impressionable young boy, who spent way too much time reading comics and "Mad Magazine", the concept of not being anxious or worried about the issues of life. Many a day in grade school, as I knelt in the cloak closet with my head between my knees waiting for the "all clear" siren, the vague notion of not worrying was superceded by the spectre of the Russians nuking me into oblivion. In other words, it didn't work. What, me worry?

I appreciate the sentiment Al, but I was worried.

I worried about everything. Mostly I worried about death. Next, was not having enough money. The pecking order proceeded from there, but there was never a shortage of things to worry about.

This month marks the 25th Anniversary of me stopping worrying. Woo-hoo!

It was the day I met Jesus. The most important part of that experience was knowing that I was forgiven and the assurance of heaven if I should die. Little did I realize back then just how much of Heaven I was getting.

Not worrying was just one of the many side benefits of knowing Jesus. My addictions were instantly healed. The guilt I was harboring from my 33 years of living terribly was assuaged. The runway really was cleared from any necessity to worry.

Matthew 6:31 (AMP) - "Therefore do not worry and be anxious, saying, What are we going to have to eat? or, What are we going to have to drink? or, What are we going to have to wear?"

 May I extend that a bit, because the verse is surely designed to go past those examples.

"or ... How the future gas prices will affect me? Am I going to be able to feed my family with the skyrocketing food prices? How will I meet the deducitible for our health insurance? Make my mortgage payment...light bill...internet".

No doubt here friends, things are going to get shaky in the world. Khadaffy is blowing up his own pipelines as he gets ready to flee for his life on the heels of Mubarak. Every corner of the globe will be effected by what is happening in the sandlots of the Middle East.

So..."What? Me worry?"  No not me. I refuse. I intend to believe Jesus. I intend to live, instruct, teach, and preach to anyone who will listen exactly what Jesus taught me.

He told me not to live like the heathen and the sinner and the unbeliever, who are all twiseted up in knots, and rather than looking toward heaven in praise and adortaiton to the One who has the answers, instead raise a cacophony of wailing and moaning about their own anxieties, fears, and desperation. A choir of death which soothes the ears of Satan himself.

Instead He says to me, from verse 33, "But seek (aim at and strive after) first of all His kingdom and His righteousness (His way of doing and being right), and then all these things taken together will be given you besides."

Let me tell you something. Here is what I believe. There WILL BE gas in my car. There WILL BE oil to heat my home. There WILL BE food in my cupboard. There WILL BE clothes on my back. There WILL BE water in my faucets.

Why me? Why am I so special? Because I have the favor of living in the house of a King! My Father knows how to take care of His children. In my Father's house there is no lack!  Who's house are you living in?

My life here on earth is and should be AS IT IS IN HEAVEN!

Oh Lord, in what could be desperate times for the world, calm the hearts of those who forget that in the world there will be tribulation and trials, but that You have OVERCOME the world, and we are OVERCOMERS with you! We are in the King's Dominion!

I declare my space and my sphere of influence a "fear free zone". I declare that those who come within my "space" will be immediately engulfed with peace and joy and praise and worship and healing and deliverance, and an unshakeable resistance to the gates of hell!

Yes indeed! On earth as it is in Heaven!

Keepin' it Real,

Pastor Kevin <><

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

"Beware Of Religious Empty Calories"

You can stuff yourself with food and feel full. If the food is of the fake variety, full of non-nutritional empty calories, you could actually be dying thinking you are satisfied. It might not kill you instantly but you will starve and waste your body over time.

It's no different with our faith in Christ.

We can be satisfied with the power and purity of the gospel, and follow Jesus for Who He is, or we can create a plethora of myths surrounding Him and turn Him into a mystery which no one can ever actually get to know.

Religious empty calories. No spiritual nutritional value. In the long run it will starve you to death.  

Matthew 6:19 (AMP) - "Do not gather and heap up and store up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moth and rust and worm consume and destroy, and where thieves break through and steal."

We often view this verse as being about worldly rich sinful gluttons. However, if we read contextually, it follows what Jesus is describing as the overtly religious.

People have built great and ornate cathedrals. They have lined their altars with gold and jewels. They have made crucifixes that for the cost they could have fed dozens, even hundreds of people.

Empty calories. A religion that starves rather than nourishes.

Weeds not vines.

Matthew 6:20-21 (AMP) - "(20) But gather and heap up and store for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust nor worm consume and destroy, and where thieves do not break through and steal; (21) For where your treasure is, there will your heart be also."

Treasure in heaven, not on earth. The true treasure of earth is what has been stored up in heaven. If your treasure is in heaven than that is where your hearts desire is, and you will never starve.

Nutritional spirituality. More bang for the buck. Healthy vibrant spirits and souls. 

Jesus people.

If you're "hungry" today may I suggest giving your "menu" a good going over? Is what you are taking in through your spiritual ears and eyes really feeding you? Come on now, really feeding you? I mean nourishing you? Allowing you to feel wonderfully satiated with the power, presence , and purity of the Word, Jesus Christ?

You could be starving and not even know it. You've been doing it for so long that it has just become a bad habit. You keep feeding off it because church has just become a familiar greasy spoon diner. The food will kill you, but all your friends are there.

I crossed over a long time ago. Nothing will ever stand between me and Jesus again. The earthbound gospel is poisonous. Toxic. The heavenly gospel is where my heart and treasure is. 

No sugary fluff. 

Keepin' it Real,

Pastor Kevin <><

Monday, February 21, 2011

"Undaunted? Fearless? Confident? Sounds Like A Superhero To Me"

No. Not a superhero. Not a Superman. 

Just the picture of what average Joe Christian should be.

I say "should be" because that's not average at all. It should be, but it's not.

Maybe we can fix that, one person, one church at a time.

We are sure trying to accomplish that in my church. I can't rest when I know that there is even one person who is living the opposite of what Jesus says is normal Christian living.

I can't rest when frustration, sadness, distress, trials, tribulation, is present in even one person in our midst.

Why is that behavior below average? Abnormal?

Because Jesus says He has overcome it. Not only that, but deprived it of its power.

If it's powerless than why does it wield so much power over so many?

Because it will take this fact to be pointed out to people in a dynamic, real, and practical way. People MUST see it!

It's no good to just tell people you will pray for them. You have to get physical with this thing.

John 16:33 (AMP) - "I have told you these things, so that in Me you may have [perfect] peace and confidence. In the world you have tribulation and trials and distress andfrustration; but be of good cheer [take courage; be confident, certain, undaunted]! For I have overcome the world. [I have deprived it of power to harm you and have conquered it for you.]"

This is something to be cheerful about! This is really, really good news!

For too long the Church has been thinking that it was something we had to do, like stop drinking, stop smoking, stop doing drugs...

Ever wonder why the failure rate is so high? Because it's been something we think we can do, but in reality it has always been Jesus having already done it for us and our failure has been to receive that.

"I have deprived it of power to harm you and have conquered it FOR YOU!"

Yeah that!

All we have to do is turn that loose! Unleash what Jesus has already done!

Woo-hoo, that's some powerful reality (Truth)!

Can you be that instrument of deliverance for you AND others!

All you need to do is start operating in it. 

With your cooperation I can lead you there.

Keepin' it Real,

Pastor Kevin <><

Friday, February 18, 2011

"Abnormal Can Look Like Normal Once You Get Used To It"

I was having a conversation with someone about what's normal/abnormal in the Church. What I believe the majority understands as normal is really abnormal. It's what I used to think was normal as well.

Then I got wised up by the Holy Spirit. 

Let me show you what I think is normal Christian/Church activity.

Acts 3:6-8 (AMP) - "(6) But Peter said, Silver and gold (money) I do not have; but what I do have, that I give to you: in [the use of] the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth, walk! (7) Then he took hold of the man's right hand with a firm grip and raised him up. And at once his feet and ankle bones became strong and steady, (8) And leaping forth he stood and began to walk, and he went into the temple with them, walking and leaping and praising God."

 That's normal.

"Pish posh! I've never seen any such thing, nor have I ever even known anyone who experienced such a thing. And besides, my pastor says that we should no longer expect these types of miracles, signs and wonders to happen anymore because God stopped operating that way after the last apostle died."

Unfortunately the latter has overcome the former as what contitutes normal.

I wasn't quite that bad when I started out. I always believed that God still performs miracles through the authority Jesus passed on to His disciples (then and now). I was just too ignorant to actually apply the object lessons provided by His Word to actually make it manifest. I thought all I had to do was pray and ask God and He would take it the rest of the way. No wonder those were lean times in the house of God.

By the way, the "last apostle" hasn't died. There are many of us alive and well and operating in the signs following the believer. Those numbers are growing every day. Never has there been more people getting saved, healed, and delivered in the Body of Christ. Praise God for that!

And we have the gaul to sit back and beg, wonder, pray, ask, and plead for revival?

We can't even see what is right in front of us. Talk about that confounded veil. I think parts of it remain in those who are dull of spirit just so the devil can keep people religious. 

We say, "Oh God, send us a revival" (if your praying that way you are already on a resuscitator). In essence, it's asking God to fix what we can't even acknowledge is reality. It's like a cancer patient who smoked all of their life begging the doctor to fix them as they inhale a cigarette through their trach tube.

It's chronic abnormality masquerading as normal.

All along the picture of Peter yanking the cripple to his feet AS HE declares His healing, has been missed by centuries of good intending people who never, ever, ever saw so much as a sniffle healed by God. After that long a time abnormal starts to be the new normal.

The stuff that takes root when the religious mind freak casts its spell is staggering.

Do you realize that the incident with the cripple in Acts 3 is the gateway to how the Church was to operate? Do you think God just threw these examples in there to just be cute stories? Just for encouragement?  NO! It was to equip us to carry out what Jesus commanded us to!

Over the years the Church ignored, or just plain threw away the instructions.

Not me.  I'm not going back there. Not for anything. I like being normal too much.

Keepin' it Real,

Pastor Kevin <><

Thursday, February 17, 2011

"There's That Confounded Veil Again!"

Ever wonder why some of the lost people just never seem to "get it"? It's easy to look at them from our perespective having crossed over from the other side, and forgetting that we were once "one of them".

Loved ones, friends, co-workers, people in the market place, on and on. How many hours of carpet time have you logged in praying for God to open their eyes and ears? How many years have you been petitioning God for your prodigal? How many begging sessions at tear stained altars?

Why, it's almost as if you thought God really didn't want to save them anyway.

That's the impression that I get anyway. 

Nothing will change until we understand first of all WHY the unsaved remain unsaved, and HOW we are to actually go about changing it.

First of all, remember that you have been given authority to act in the name of Jesus. If that's true (and it is), then why do you continue to ask Him to take care of it? That's mistake number one.

Mistake number two happens because you committed mistake number one. 

This may sound strange, but you're praying too much. Not that prayer is bad, but your praying the wrong way. Sometimes you need to act.

Listen to what Paul says:

2 Corinthians 4:3 (AMP) - "But even if our Gospel (the glad tidings) also be hidden (obscured and covered up with a veil that hinders the knowledge of God), it is hidden [only] to those who are perishing and obscured [only] to those who are spiritually dyingand veiled [only] to those who are lost."

First of all, the unbeliever has a veil over them that hinders them from receiving the knowledge that there is a gospel that can rescue them from their state of perdition. They are lost and dying because of their inability to see or hear the good news of Jesus Christ.  Our faulty remedy has been to continually badger God to do something about it. Jesus has told us to do something about it. Which way do you think is the right way? I think the results you have been having will tell the story.


2 Corinthians 4:4 (AMP) - "For the god of this world has blinded the unbelievers' minds [that they should not discern the truth], preventing them from seeing the illuminating light of the Gospel of the glory of Christ (the Messiah), Who is the Image and Likeness of God."

There it is! Right there! Read contextually! Verse 3 is the veil, verse 4 is the cause of the veil.

The lost are prevented. They can't see nor hear the gospel because Satan has a veil over them which does not allow them to receive properly.  It's noise, distractions, shiny objects. His demons are doing a brain freak on them. It's all static and mumbo jumbo to them!

They can't see Jesus! If we can't see Jesus we will die.

So...what to do. Well, you can stop praying to God and wasting His time and yours, and start obeying what Jesus has told us to do.

Cast out the demons of the veil. Stop the mind freak. It's a simple fix. The devil is blinding them, you have authority over the devil and the gates of hell itself. Jesus said they will not prevail. He said He saw Satan fall like lightning when the disciples gave Him the good report of demons fleeing from them.

Remove the veil by taking authority over demonic forces.

This in itself will not get them saved. It will however, for the first time, allow them to be susceptible to seeing and hearing the gospel which will bring them salvation. Once the evil force field is destroyed hit them with the Good News!

This might be hard for some to understand. You may have become so used to handling this the wrong way, that the right way looks like the wrong way.  Look at it for yourselves (Matt. 10:1; Luke 9:1; Luke 10:19).

Receive your assignment in the Name of Jesus Christ and carry it out. I believe you will be quite amazed at the results.

Keepin' it Real,

Pastor Kevin <>< 

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

"Weigh The Risk"

I have found that people who are not willing to take risks rarely accomplish much in life. People who do not take risks in life usually have regrets later.

Risk means something different for the believer.

Matthew 6:25 (AMP) - "Therefore I tell you, stop being perpetually uneasy (anxious and worried) about your life, what you shall eat or what you shall drink; or about your body, what you shall put on. Is not life greater [in quality] than food, and the body [far above and more excellent] than clothing?"

I'm saying to confront uneasiness. Flee the comfort zone. Launch headlong into what goes against your better judgment into what has been defined as the Holy Spirit's better judgment.

It really does boil down to living according to the flesh or according to the Spirit.

The flesh could either make you take stupid and ridiculous risks, or no risks at all. 

You could live the daredevil lifestyle, or a mundane existence.

The Holy Spirit organizes it all perfectly of we yield to Him.

The kind of risks I'm speaking of are not the dramatic life and limb stuff.

I'm talking about everyday living.  Where you live it all out day to day. Your job. Your home. The gym. School. The market place.

What are you willing to risk for the sake of bringing the Kingdom of Heaven down around you and everyone elses ears?

Would you risk family, friends, and co-workers turning on you? Would you risk losing a job? Would you risk your nest egg? Your 401K? Your safe and secure feeling? Your toys?

Jesus was really saying, isn't life, true living, much more than all this stuff we have come to endear to ourselves?

People are more apt to give up life and limb over their stuff. That's because stuff is perpetual and can be passed along. We have become so attached to the concept of stuff that not only do we think we cannot live without it but that our future generations can't either. The world calls it building a "legacy".

I'd rather be remembered for having the necessities (and perhaps a little more), but in the end having nothing left that wasn't absorbed into the Kingdom in some useful way. After all, isn't a King's Domain legacy much more worthy to bequeath to your loved ones?

At the end of the day I'm not sure if the word "risk" is even applicable in Kingdom living. 

I mean, is it really a risk? Is it a risk when you just know everything is going to turn out OK because you are running with God's plan? Is there ever a down side? Is it ever a win/lose situation?

I can't answer that for you. You have to answer it according to how you trust in Him and His Word. Only you know what you're willing to give up.

If you believe and obey the verse mentioned today, than where is the risk? It's only risky if you fear losing something which is generally nothing more than stuff.

As for me, I want to live and enjoy living. Not just go through the motions of living and slaving away to accumulate and maintain stuff, but living the life that matters.

Remember this: if the world met the Christ of Christianity they would accept Him. Instead they have met the christian of the Christ and have rejected Him.

I really couldn't live with that.

Keepin' it Real,

Pastor Kevin <><

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

"I Am Not Ashamed"

I remember when I first got saved I did not own a bible. Having been raised in a religious system that did not promote owning, or even reading a bible for that matter, owning a bible for me was a foreign concept.

When I bought my first one I picked the smallest, most unobtrusive one I could find. It was one that could fit into my pocket. It was one I could hide so people wouldn't think I had become a "bible thumper."

Needless to say that once I became more aware of my righteousness in Christ, my faith kicked in stronger, and I picked a bible I could display openly and without fear as my "sword of the Spirit".

Here's what happened, and which should inevitably happen for all believers.

Romans 1:16-17 (ESV) - (16) For I am not ashamed of the gospel, for it is the power of God for salvation to everyone who believes, to the Jew first and also to the Greek. (17) For in it the righteousness of God is revealed from faith for faith, as it is written, “The righteous shall live by faith.”

I am not ashamed. I am righteous in Christ. I live by faith.

These are indisputable signs of the believer. They are evidence of the power of God working in the born again believer.

The gospel is the power and righteousness of God produced and manifested in the believer. It brings boldness to proclaim and spread it, as well as the power to live by faith.

Believers are believers because they believed. From that they have received all the power that goes with it.

There are no unbelieving believers. 

Keepin' it Real,

Pastor Kevin <><