Wednesday, February 25, 2015

Day 29 - Blood That Possesses Its Own Life

Thoughts on Michael Wells’ teachings in My Weakness for His Strength - # 128
         
Michael’s book is available through:

Abiding Life Ministries International
Littleton, Colorado
(303) 972-0859       www.abidinglife.com

Notice:  this email is part of a BLOG, called Living Life With a Capital “C”Why a blog?  So that many can receive the weekly thoughts I express on Michael’s writings in an easy manner. 


Amazing how God designed life.  All of creation is amazing.  That is why it is too much for the intellectual to take in.  Nothing can really “explain” the ultimate truth that God is the Source.  It takes faith.  Well, amen.  Have you ever stopped to think about “life is in the blood”?



Day 29
Blood That Possesses Its Own Life

So Jesus said to them, “Truly, truly, I say to you, unless you eat the flesh of the Son of Man and drink His blood, you have no life in yourselves. He who eats My flesh and drinks My blood has eternal life, and I will raise him up on the last day. For My flesh is true food, and My blood is true drink. He who eats My flesh and drinks My blood abides in Me, and I in him.” --John 6:53-56

I was thinking how the heart must pump the blood to the lungs in order for the blood to carry oxygen throughout the body and keep it alive. The life is in the blood, and that life is oxygen. Giving someone mouth-to-mouth resuscitation is restoring his life. It makes sense that God breathed life into man and man became a living soul. The breath of God, coming from outside man, is the life. In fact, all of creation is receiving life from God moment by moment. He is all around us. What if we had blood that had its own oxygen and did not need an outside source? Then we could live without breathing! In a spiritual sense this is exactly what we have, the blood of Jesus that possesses life in itself, not requiring an outside source of life like our blood does. The blood of Christ will allow our spirit and soul to go on living when the body is destroyed and the world as a source is gone.

Yellow – VIP, Very Important Point      Green – IT, Incredible Truth        
Red – GP, Greatest Promises
Turquoise – UR, Unfathomable Riches           Pink – PV, Priceless Victory



Think about it…God just simply breathed life into man and man became a living soul.  And there became a man.  Before that, there was no man.  That is more than our simple minds can really comprehend.  But, it is significant that life came from the breath of God.

And God put that life into our blood, which with the heart God gave us He designed that we would pump that life throughout our body.  Now we breathe in life from without (life that God gives to creation moment by moment), and God distributes it throughout our body by the organs He designed.  Amazing!

What is more amazing is the spiritual life that God gives us through the blood of Christ!  Eternal life.  Everlasting life.  Nothing can take that life from us…ever.  And it doesn’t take this world to be the source.  Well, amen!



To access ALL past weekly blogs, go to Living Life With a Capital “C” by logging onto www.leemccm.blogspot.com 

NOTICE: another blog on Michael Wells’ book, Sidetracked In The Wilderness, called Getting Out of the Wilderness.  You can access by logging onto www.leemcchristianministries.blogspot.com


Lee McDowell Christian Ministries
leemccm@gmail.com

1737 CR 2051    Nacogdoches, Tx 75965                                        936-559-5696

Wednesday, February 18, 2015

Day 18 - Attraction Versus Respect

Thoughts on Michael Wells’ teachings in My Weakness for His Strength - # 127
         
Michael’s book is available through:

Abiding Life Ministries International
Littleton, Colorado
(303) 972-0859       www.abidinglife.com

Notice:  this email is part of a BLOG, called Living Life With a Capital “C”Why a blog?  So that many can receive the weekly thoughts I express on Michael’s writings in an easy manner. 


Two simple words that most are familiar with, but few make the distinction between what we do with that other person’s heart.  Michael gives us a great life lesson with much to ponder…



Day 18

Attraction Versus Respect


For all that is in the world, the lust of the flesh and the lust of the eyes and the boastful pride of life, is not from the Father, but is from the world. –I John 2:16

There is a difference between attraction and respect. When we hold true godly respect for another, it sends us in praise and gratitude to Jesus, in Whom we can experience more of whatever attributes we have been seeing and enjoying in the other person. In the context of respect, we think only of how we can encourage the other person on in the Lord, and we leave his or her heart with God. Attraction wants to experience some of that heart for one's self, and it is a pity that we currently see this often in congregations. The men or women are listening to a female or male speaker and thinking what a great experience it would be if married to that “wonderful” person. That is attraction, not respect. To look at someone and say, "If I were younger and unattached, there would be no question about pursuing that person," is attraction. What does that statement have to do with respect? Respect is gender neutral and, generally, attraction is gender specific and can grow so far as lust. So what is the point in understanding the difference between the two? Primarily this: How do we confess if we do not know what to confess? If we must admit that we have been dabbling in attraction, the solution is easy: Confess it and move into respect. The lack of distinction between attraction and respect has led to much spiritual abuse. Believers are listening too much to men and not to God; they are following too many men and not Jesus. Respect will never lead us into the type of situation where attraction allows us to go; respect keeps us following Jesus. Perhaps this can help us understand why some in the Church get sidetracked. 

Yellow – VIP, Very Important Point      Green – IT, Incredible Truth        
Red – GP, Greatest Promises
Turquoise – UR, Unfathomable Riches           Pink – PV, Priceless Victory



Michael leads us to a simple conclusion: Respect is for the betterment of the other person.  Attraction is for my seeming betterment.  To have any lack of distinction between the two is simply man wanting what is best for himself, and caring less what is spiritual and what is best for another.

I wonder how many have ever even thought of the magnificent statement Michael makes regarding: “In context of respect, we think only of how we can encourage the other person on in the Lord, and we leave his or her heart with God.”  I wonder how many can even comprehend what Michael is saying in the last part of his statement?
Does someone embracing attraction really understand they want to experience some of another’s heart for themselves?  And what the end result of such is?

We live in a day when even in the church the subtle conversations, observations, and misinterpretations are indicative of just how far Christians have fallen from a pure relationship with Jesus.  For over 25 years we have seen just how little the word “relationship” has real meaning to most people.  Perhaps this is simply the result of this lack of distinction between respect and attraction.




To access ALL past weekly blogs, go to Living Life With a Capital “C” by logging onto www.leemccm.blogspot.com 

NOTICE: another blog on Michael Wells’ book, Sidetracked In The Wilderness, called Getting Out of the Wilderness.  You can access by logging onto www.leemcchristianministries.blogspot.com


Lee McDowell Christian Ministries
leemccm@gmail.com

1737 CR 2051    Nacogdoches, Tx 75965                                       936-559-5696

Thursday, February 12, 2015

Day 16 - Are You Walking In Darkness?

Thoughts on Michael Wells’ teachings in My Weakness for His Strength - # 126
         
Michael’s book is available through:

Abiding Life Ministries International
Littleton, Colorado
(303) 972-0859       www.abidinglife.com

Notice:  this email is part of a BLOG, called Living Life With a Capital “C”Why a blog?  So that many can receive the weekly thoughts I express on Michael’s writings in an easy manner. 


In this day’s writing, Michael brings up one of the most interesting aspects of every Christian’s walk with the Lord: the times when He doesn’t seem to be anywhere found…silence…as Isaiah says, walking “in darkness and has no light.”  These are days when the sincerity of our trust in God is tested. 


Day 16

Are You Walking In Darkness?

Who is among you that fears the LORD, that obeys the voice of His servant, that walks in darkness and has no light? Let him trust in the name of the LORD and rely on his God. Behold, all you who kindle a fire, who encircle yourselves with firebrands, walk in the light of your fire and among the brands you have set ablaze. This you will have from My hand; and you will lie down in torment. --Isaiah 50:10, 11

Often I have described faith as a room we must all enter one day. Upon entering, God turns off the lights, removes the emotions of His presence, allows thoughts to run wild, and permits the enemy to whisper, “If . . . if only you had not sinned, if only you had married someone else, if you had just made better decisions, God would be with you, you would not be in this darkness, and you would have wonderful feelings.” In this room believers struggle to understand what is happening; confusion is magnified if faith has never been rightly explained, for it is in just such a place that faith is developed as the assurance of things hoped for, the conviction of things not seen in our lives. In that darkroom we believers cannot see the Lord, yet we can do something that no angel in heaven that sees Him and believes can do. When we cannot see Him in this room and yet believe, we become very pleasing, for it is said that without faith we cannot please God. It is counterproductive to try to make our own light or attempt to stir up feelings, create an experience, or give in to depression, which is nothing more than anger without the excitement. Like the woman in labor who must not fight against pangs but let the baby come, we need not fight the darkroom but rest there and wait. He is coming! The greatness of faith is proven by how long we can wait. “BEHOLD, HE IS COMING WITH THE CLOUDS, and every eye will see Him, even those who pierced Him; and all the tribes of the earth will mourn over Him. Even so. Amen.” --Revelation 1:7

Yellow – VIP, Very Important Point      Green – IT, Incredible Truth        
Red – GP, Greatest Promises
Turquoise – UR, Unfathomable Riches           Pink – PV, Priceless Victory


Michael draws our attention to four things that make this endeavor a “turning-point” challenge:
1. “confusion is magnified if faith has never been rightly explained” – incredibly as important as biblical faith is, it is unbelievable that the vast majority of Christians cannot agree as to what “faith” really is.  Real biblical faith is a belief that what God has said in His Word is truth…a belief that has turned into a trust in God that no one or no circumstance can steal away.  Real biblical faith can never be detoured into confusion.  But, Michael gives everyone an absolute: a faulty or deficient definition will ultimately lead to confusion.  As Michael loved to say, “We rise and fall based on our definitions.”

2. “when we cannot see Him in this room and yet believe, we become very pleasing” – this is the essence of what real faith and trust is: believing and trusting without seeing.  Life is full of instances where this kind of faith and trust is challenged.  We pass these tests of our faith when our definition is solid and biblical, and we stand firm trusting God.

3. “it is counterproductive to try and make up our own light…” – taking matters into our own hands when it seems God is nowhere to be found or to be depended upon spells disaster from the start. 

4. “we need not fight the darkroom but rest there and wait…the greatness of faith is proven by how long we can wait” -  rest, wait, trust God to show up…the most difficult challenge for anyone going through a real test.  But what is real biblical faith and trust in God without some “wait”?

All of these point to one thing: we need to ask ourselves just how “great” is our faith, knowing the answer gives us direction as to our trust in God.




To access ALL past weekly blogs, go to Living Life With a Capital “C” by logging onto www.leemccm.blogspot.com 

NOTICE: another blog on Michael Wells’ book, Sidetracked In The Wilderness, called Getting Out of the Wilderness.  You can access by logging onto www.leemcchristianministries.blogspot.com


Lee McDowell Christian Ministries
leemccm@gmail.com

1737 CR 2051    Nacogdoches, Tx 75965                                           936-559-5696

Friday, February 6, 2015

Day 246 - Simplicity Takes Faith

Thoughts on Michael Wells’ teachings in My Weakness for His Strength - # 125
         
Michael’s book is available through:

Abiding Life Ministries International
Littleton, Colorado
(303) 972-0859       www.abidinglife.com

Notice:  this email is part of a BLOG, called Living Life With a Capital “C”Why a blog?  So that many can receive the weekly thoughts I express on Michael’s writings in an easy manner. 


Some people like mental gymnastics.  Some like complex things.  Some like simple.  Faith is all about simple, as Michael points out so well in today’s writing.


DAY 246

Simplicity Takes Faith

You are from God, little children, and have overcome them; because greater is He who is in you than he who is in the world. --I John 4:4

At that very time He rejoiced greatly in the Holy Spirit, and said, “I praise Thee, O Father, Lord of heaven and earth, that Thou didst hide these things from {the} wise and intelligent and didst reveal them to babes. Yes, Father, for thus it was well-pleasing in Thy sight.” --Luke 10:21

Often I hear this type of comment: “That is a simplification.” “The answer is too simple.” “You are taking a simplistic approach to a complex problem!” I hope that I am! I want to be simple, for all that Jesus taught concerning life was simple. In fact, He took the complex and made it simple, and yet believers are the first to shout foul, shallow, and unlearned when the Christian life is made out to be simple. Why? Simplicity takes faith, while an unbelieving, fleshly approach to life demands understanding. If man can maintain the idol of understanding, he can maintain unbelief, since there will always be the need for one more indisputable fact before action is taken. This is why there is no end to the pursuit of knowledge for the unbelieving believer, who never intends to act. If knowledge were obtained, action would be demanded.

When we minister to discouraged believers, the answer needed is simple. However, a simple answer requires faith, which is just what the defeated are missing. Therefore, it is important to make understanding a starting point, not the end of discipling, to bring believers to faith. No matter how eloquently the information is presented, the whole issue will rest on faith. If the element of faith is removed from what is being taught, then Christ Himself is removed. We believe and we act. The secret is that when we are unbelieving, we can ask Jesus to help us in our unbelief, and at that point all the forces of heaven and earth will back us and push us forward in a believing life.

Yellow – VIP, Very Important Point      Green – IT, Incredible Truth        
Red – GP, Greatest Promises
Turquoise – UR, Unfathomable Riches           Pink – PV, Priceless Victory



One of the most staggering points Michael makes is that UNBELIEVING BELIEVERS never intend to act…only to pursue more knowledge.  “Maintaining the idol of understanding”…that’s a new thought for a lot of Christians to ponder.  We stress Bible study and discipleship without making known that without faith and action following we have created a monster…a teaching that has removed Christ Himself from its heart.

The beauty of Christianity is that it is all so very simple.  Jesus’ words in Luke 10:21 proclaim His love for the Father’s making it so simple that the “wise of the world” would miss it.  It is below their level of academia.  But, He also loved that to “babes” it is revealed.  Amen!

“We believe and we act.”  Truer words were never spoken.  We do act upon what we believe.  As Michael states, “If knowledge were obtained, action would be demanded.”  So, this day’s writing makes it clear to me that I need to take a look at what I have learned from God and see whether I am acting upon it.

James made it very clear in his epistle that faith without works is dead.  That should be a startling alarm to all of us to do a “self-check” as to whether we have settled for understanding as the end of our pursuit for discipleship.  Are we acting upon that which we have learned, or not?  Has “Bible study” become our detour or distraction from Christ?  He as much as said such in one instance to a group of “Bible studiers” (John 5:39).



To access ALL past weekly blogs, go to Living Life With a Capital “C” by logging onto www.leemccm.blogspot.com 

NOTICE: another blog on Michael Wells’ book, Sidetracked In The Wilderness, called Getting Out of the Wilderness.  You can access by logging onto www.leemcchristianministries.blogspot.com


Lee McDowell Christian Ministries
leemccm@gmail.com

1737 CR 2051    Nacogdoches, Tx 75965                                                 936-559-5696

Saturday, January 31, 2015

Day 2 - Add a One to All Your Zeros

Thoughts on Michael Wells’ teachings in My Weakness for His Strength - # 124
         
Michael’s book is available through:

Abiding Life Ministries International
Littleton, Colorado
(303) 972-0859       www.abidinglife.com

Notice:  this email is part of a BLOG, called Living Life With a Capital “C”Why a blog?  So that many can receive the weekly thoughts I express on Michael’s writings in an easy manner. 

How many times in life have you had someone say something so simple and seemingly so minuscule…that turned out to be so profound?  Michael shares one of those moments in his life that turned out to be so profound.  Enjoy this one…then make sure the One is in front of all you are counting on!


Day 2

Add a One to All Your Zeros

Jesus said to him, “I am the Way and the Truth and the Life. No one comes to the Father except through Me. --John 14:6

While I was in India speaking at a school, one of the dorm parents asked to talk to me. He turned out to be a great blessing to me as he sat sharing about so many things. He had been a Brahman, one of the elite of Hinduism, worshipped as a god. He had always been taught that there were many ways to God, and yet he began to wonder, “Do I have the right way?” It was this questioning and the Holy Spirit that had brought him to Jesus. Once he confessed his faith, he was banned from going to his house, and after sixteen years, his father died without reconciliation. He is now tolerated and allowed to visit his house, so long as he does not stay. He really does not care, for he has found Jesus. The most interesting point he made was about writing on a chalkboard his qualifications for being a Christian. Under talent he put zero. Under ability he put zero. Under intelligence: zero. Under people skills he put zero. In every category, he put a zero. He looked on the board and all he had written was a line of zeros. Then a man said to him, “Let me show you something. All you have are zeros, six to be exact. Now we will add one to all the zeros, the only ONE that matters. We will add Jesus to all your zeros.” The man then put a one at the front of all the zeros and said, “See? When I added the ONE to the front, where Jesus belongs, your zeros have now become one million. Add Jesus to your zeros and your weaknesses become your strength.”


Yellow – VIP, Very Important Point      Green – IT, Incredible Truth        
Red – GP, Greatest Promises
Turquoise – UR, Unfathomable Riches           Pink – PV, Priceless Victory



Beautiful!  Simple, yet so profound!  Just add the One to the front of all I am counting on, and I now have strength in all my weaknesses!  Hallelujah!

Man is so conceited to think he can be “something,” isn’t he?  Ooops, that includes you and me.  Oh, my.  Well, amen.  Now I know better. 

The question always is:  Will I admit I am a zero?

Michael gave me one of these little tidbits one time: My IQ is not much.  I’ve never had it “figured,” but I know it can’t be much.  But God gave me the Mind of Christ when I was Born Again, and now I can draw upon His IQ of one hundred million kazillian.  Pretty good, huh?  Thank you, Lord, for this magnificent gift. 

Oh, yeah…I can do ALL things through Christ who strengthens me.  Thank you, Lord, for this magnificent gift.

He is the One who at the front makes all my zeros become something.  Amen.



To access ALL past weekly blogs, go to Living Life With a Capital “C” by logging onto www.leemccm.blogspot.com 

NOTICE: a new blog on Michael Wells’ book, Sidetracked In The Wilderness, called Getting Out of the Wilderness.  You can access by logging onto www.leemcchristianministries.blogspot.com


Lee McDowell Christian Ministries
leemccm@gmail.com

1737 CR 2051    Nacogdoches, Tx 75965                                           936-559-5696

Friday, January 23, 2015

Day 6 - Abiding-Life People

Thoughts on Michael Wells’ teachings in My Weakness for His Strength - # 123
         
Michael’s book is available through:

Abiding Life Ministries International
Littleton, Colorado
(303) 972-0859       www.abidinglife.com

Notice:  this email is part of a BLOG, called Living Life With a Capital “C”Why a blog?  So that many can receive the weekly thoughts I express on Michael’s writings in an easy manner. 


“Abiding-Life People,” what a delightful moniker for Born Again Believers who have come to realize what being “in Christ” really is.  Michael points out the very essence of the spiritual totality of His life in us.  Enjoy!



Day 6 

Abiding-Life People


But thanks be to God, who always leads us in His triumph in Christ, and manifests through us the sweet aroma of the knowledge of Him in every place. --II Corinthians 2:14

In the Rocky Mountains we have what is called the “high country,” my favorite place. As I ascend in the hot summer, I can experience what appears to be a perpetual springtime. Beautiful! In late summer I find the berry bushes and the wild strawberries. They have not been tampered with and therefore are very small in appearance, but grand in flavor. They are not like the huge grocery-store berries that are big but have no flavor. These are small and powerful, and they are hard to get to because of the bushes and thorns. Attempting to eat them means I will be scratched. Is it worth it? It is to me. Many fruits are bigger, but not tastier. When I eat one of these berries, the small seeds have a tendency to stick in my mouth. I spit them out in the hope that there will be new growth.

In many places I have seen the message of abiding in Christ initially spit out, only to grow years later. The seed of abiding is so resilient. Abiding-life people are like the berries at high altitude: small with a fragrant aroma and the fruit so pungent. Let the years speak against the minutes; we are the lesser people in this great time, the abiding people, the berries of high altitude, the fragrant aroma of the world. 

Yellow – VIP, Very Important Point      Green – IT, Incredible Truth        
Red – GP, Greatest Promises
Turquoise – UR, Unfathomable Riches           Pink – PV, Priceless Victory



Don’t you just love it (in addition to joining the Apostle Paul in giving thanks to God) that God “always leads us in His triumph in Christ”?  What a victory!  And then to top it off, He makes known (“manifests”) “through us the sweet aroma of the knowledge of Him in every place.”  Only God can create that “sweet aroma.”  Amen.

And, Michael gives us an astounding thought: “the message of abiding in Christ initially spit out, only to grow years later…the seed of abiding is so resilient.”  Wouldn’t it be wonderful to take a poll or survey or “whatever we would call it”…of ALL those enjoying the Abiding Life world-wide, and find out when EACH: 
(1) First identifies some sort of “introduction” (seed planting) of the truths of “abiding,” and then,
(2) Acknowledges the “revelation” of the truth in such a way that each “saw” it and it became a reality in their life. 
And to be able to calculate an “average” length of time between the “planting” and the “harvest” of this magnificent LIFE.  Hallelujah!

“Fragrant aroma…fruit so pungent.”  To God be all praise!



To access ALL past weekly blogs, go to Living Life With a Capital “C” by logging onto www.leemccm.blogspot.com 

NOTICE: a new blog on Michael Wells’ book, Sidetracked In The Wilderness, called Getting Out of the Wilderness.  You can access by logging onto www.leemcchristianministries.blogspot.com


Lee McDowell Christian Ministries
leemccm@gmail.com

1737 CR 2051    Nacogdoches, Tx 75965                                             936-559-5696

Friday, January 16, 2015

Day 1 - Abiding Is The Hardest Word

Thoughts on Michael Wells’ teachings in My Weakness for His Strength - # 122
         
Michael’s book is available through:

Abiding Life Ministries International
Littleton, Colorado
(303) 972-0859       www.abidinglife.com

Notice:  this email is part of a BLOG, called Living Life With a Capital “C”Why a blog?  So that many can receive the weekly thoughts I express on Michael’s writings in an easy manner. 


Having preached in different places to folks of a different language with an interpreter translating what I say…I too have encountered what Michael is talking about relative to the translator struggling to come up with a word in the other language to convey what I said in English.  In fact, sometimes they just simply say, “We don’t have a word for the word you used.  Can you say it another way?”  In today’s writing Michael points out the importance of understanding exactly what Jesus was saying when He spoke about Himself BEING the Vine, and then how our “abiding” is so much of our relationship to Him.  May God give you great insights into this teaching.


Day 1
Abide Is The Hardest Word

Abide in Me, and I in you. As the branch cannot bear fruit of itself unless it abides in the vine, so neither can you unless you abide in Me. –John 15:4

Having spoken through hundreds of interpreters in nearly that many languages, I consistently find that the hardest word in the Bible to translate is abiding. Many languages use the word remaining, and yet that does not quite cover this important word, for Jesus did not use an analogy of the vine, saying that He was like a vine; He said that He was the Vine. Every vine preaches and teaches Jesus. Abiding is the culmination of His work and is everything, for in abiding we receive the Everything, Jesus. Is it not amazing that the whole work of Jesus is revealed in this one word? It would also make sense that the enemy would work to obscure the word. Abiding: holding me in Him, His life in me, cleansing, revealing what I am, kept safe from so much disease, a moment-by-moment existence, eternal life. Abiding, abiding, abiding. Wonderful!

Yellow – VIP, Very Important Point      Green – IT, Incredible Truth        
Red – GP, Greatest Promises
Turquoise – UR, Unfathomable Riches           Pink – PV, Priceless Victory




Isn’t it amazing that Christianity is so much more than:
·                I am a Christian.
·                I am going to Heaven when I die.

And it is NOT an endeavor to try or work to “be” a Christian, or a better Christian.  

Look carefully at what Michael points out:
1. “Abiding is the culmination of His work and is everything, for in abiding we receive the Everything, Jesus.”
     Culmination: the end or final result of something.  As a Christian I HAVE (not “need to get”) the Everything, Jesus.  All that He is, I have.

2. He is “holding me in Him, His life in me, cleansing, revealing what I am, kept safe from so much disease, a moment-by-moment existence, eternal life.”
     I HAVE and AM all these things.  What an incredible realization expanding my being a Christian (what Christianity is) past the two simple statements I mentioned at the first.

Each and every day, moment-by-moment, I can live all of this with a greater expectation of what God is going to do in and through my life.  Amen!



To access ALL past weekly blogs, go to Living Life With a Capital “C” by logging onto www.leemccm.blogspot.com 


Lee McDowell Christian Ministries
leemccm@gmail.com

1737 CR 2051    Nacogdoches, Tx 75965                                            936-559-5696