Sawubona – “I SEE you”

Mar 2:13  And He went out again by the seaside. And all the crowd came to Him, and He taught them.
Mar 2:14  And as He passed on, He saw Levi the son of Alpheus sitting at the tax-office. And He said to him, Follow Me. And he arose and followed Him.
Mar 2:15  And it happened as Jesus reclined in his house, many tax-collectors and sinners also reclined with Jesus and His disciples. For there were many, and they followed Him.
Mar 2:16  And when the scribes and Pharisees saw Him eat with tax-collectors and sinners, they said to His disciples, How is it that He eats and drinks with tax-collectors and sinners?
Mar 2:17  When Jesus heard, He said to them, They who are strong have no need of a physician, but the ones who have illness. I did not come to call the righteous, but sinners to repentance.
What did you see Lord when you saw Levi. You saw him. “Sawubona”…” I see you”…
You saw a man desperate to be identified and seen and called out. He was a tax collector… he would never have been seen as Levi, he would only have been seen as the dreaded Roman lackey.
Oh goodness then you went to Levis house for dinner!!
The pharisees were so annoyed because you associated with those people. the dregs, the quiet ones, the inconsequential, the less thans. You saw them.
I can hear your “follow me”. You were in the middle of a large crowd, teaching and walking along… yet you saw him, you felt that connection in the midst of all those people and looked up and saw him.
That door opening, that conversation as you looked at Levi.. spirit to spirit.
I can see you motion with your head with a smile on your face.
Levi was poised on his seat, watching you, just itching to get out of his seat.. “shall I”? “No I cant”.. “Shall I…”, he just needed to be seen, and with that “Follow me” he was off.   You knew that and with a smile you gave him freely exactly what he needed because you saw his heart and you loved him.
Then you all went to his house for tea.  You liked doing that.  The pharisees were annoyed!!  Suddenly not part of the clique!
They were used to being the ones with the crowd and being followed and bowed to, and being the IN lot.. but here is Jesus, in the midst of a happy laughing lot of people who are normally passed by and ignored… can you imagine their joy at being seen, at being included, at being loved and brought home for dinner with the man of the hour with power?! He TRUELY saw THEM.
Then I listen to Jessie Duplantis and Kenneth Copeland defending their need for a private jet as there is such a problem being on a normal airline with all  those demons hanging onto us poor folks.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AdH2DGSXjss
Yet here is Jesus eating with tax collectors and sinners! I dont know either of these men so dont want to malign whatever ministry it is that they have, but what I dont believe I will ever see is either of thwm in  crowd of sinners and tax collecters (so many DEMONS) and then calling another over so they can go to his house for tea.
Something else that struck me in this…
Jesus was not restrained by the Pharisees expectations of him. He walked free. This because he was free. I guess this is what Paul was saying about no longer being under the law but how the Law of the Spirit of life sets us free from the Law of sin and death.
While thinking about the concept of God that keeps us small and reduced, I remembered that for me there was a fear that kept me stepping over that line from doubt to trust. Fear that prevents you moving into the true concept of God. It is safer here becaue you can control the outcome. There are rules, laws, religion. You control what is believable or trustable. Staying in the idol concept of God makes him safe and controlable, he will only do what you expect, which is not a great deal. He is still under your control. When you put a box around God, you create a false god because God cannot be boxed. Stepping away from that and putting that god on the pyre takes great courage because now this G-D of the universe, creator and altogether mystery is in control. You do not know what is going to happen because all is possible. He is in control, he is God. That is surrender. The surrender of any illusion of control.
THinking about “MORE”, Asking the false god of your own making for more is like going to one of those ornamental wells in a garden and dropping a bucket expecting water. A waste.
There is no expectations with God, not because he cant deliver but because expectations underline control. I know that he said Greater things than these…. so I dont have expectations any more I just know.. this is what will happen… greater things, rooted and grounded in love things, mountain moving things, and like we love those God puts in front of us today and live in that type of moment, so it is with the greater things, it is not a future expectation but a living it in the moment.
Does God graciously work within our false concepts.. yes I know he does, but like Jesus could not do much in Nazareth when he went home because they had a false concept of him (is this not Jesus the carpenter… etc) who he can be for us, and who we can be in the world is massively diminished until we step out into the wide horizone that is the Kingdom of God.
In the world but no longer of it
Understanding our freedom is key
Woke up so early this morning again 1:30.  wrote the following
What Now?
Greater Things
Do we have an example?
Jesus?  In his time, before his death there was no new covenant.  Paul/Peter/Apostles.
Are they our “at the very least”, or was that experience at that time just for them and all that is left for now is this?
What do I believe
and
There is fear that keeps you stepping over that line fromdoubt to trust.  Fear that prevents you moving into the true concept of God.  It is safer here becaue you can control the outcome.  You control what you believe or trust.  Staying in the idol concept of God makes him safe and controlable, he will only do what you expect, which is nothing nice.  He is still under your control.  Stepping away from that and putting that god on the pyre take great courage because now this G-D of the universe, creator and altogether mystery is in control.
That is surrender.  Asking the false god of your own making for more lis like going to one of those ornamental wells in a garden and dropping a bucket expecting water.
When you put a box around God, you create a false god because God cannot be boxed

The God Obstacle

Beloved,
God stands in your path, as you march around the mountain, picking flowers as you go, drinking coffee and eating cake.
All you see is an obstacle as you quickly glance ahead, so you carry on chatting, or reading, or flicking through your ipad and move to the left a little to navigate it.
You have done this a few times, and then carried on.
But this time the obstacle is going to move to the left, or the right with you.
As you carry on your conversation with your life you are surprised subconciously that the obstacle is still there, so you keep walking left to move around it as there has always been a way around before.
Suddenly the mountain is before you and you can go left no more, as you turn you subconciously think that surely you can go forward round the mountain again now, but no, the obstacle is still there.  You stand a little, not really engaging with this, conversing with your slowly devolving life, until you begin to feel a little uncomfortable, a little less sure.  Suddenly you are acutely aware of the deep waters below all the froth and the bubbles you have been doggy paddling in for so long.  Your ipad, your phone, your life becomes quiet, and suddenly you hear it… this deep rumbling call to look up.
So you do, …

The Slamming door

1Pe 5:6  Then be humbled under the mighty hand of God, that He may exalt you in time;
1Pe 5:7  “casting all your anxiety onto Him,” because it matters to Him concerning you.
Why have I forgotten this again?
I still dont believe I matter… that deep down I am worthless
I have to stay wrapped up in your presence
For the longer I am away
The easier it is to become cold
TO be eased outside the door
Until again I am watching from the outside in
It matters to Him concerning you….
AH, oh crud, the lie has unfolded in my heart again
wrapping its tendrils around my bare soul
Opening the path to the pit and tugging me down
But the gentle quiet voice will not be silenced
He whispers inexorably into my broken heart
With tenderness that I am unable to withstand
The lie withers in the fierceness of His love
The unfolding retreats back to the pit from where it came
I am astonished at the small longing in my bare soul for the lie
For the independance it brings,
for the self satisfaction flag it raises over the lonely house
for the pride that sweeps the floors
and the selfishness that slams the isolation shutters
I see the battle in me now, the thorn in my side
The conflict and tension that exist between the old and the new
But He walks these rooms, these floors, flinging wide the doors
My bare dusty soul is swept clean again,
Filled with light and life and grace and Love as
The shutters are flung open and the sun streams in
He is my answer to the broken world I hid from
He is the answer to my broken heart I hid from
I am humbled under His might hand again
I am up from the dust again
He is the ground of my being, again
I lift my eyes to my true Centre,
Again.

When we feel we are not quite enough

Sometimes we feel we are not quite enough.  We look at those around that seem to have it all together, that seem better, more spiritual, more fun, more happy, more… well just more!

It happens this incidental looking and comparing, but it is not true, it is not life, it is a lie and we know that so step back and remember the truth.

Paul talks to us about living up to what we have believed, know what we know and live there. That revelation that God has given you, walk in that. Dont eye up those around you and their revelations as if you can live there. You cant. You will die a death a 1000 times trying to live in someone elses knowledge or life.

Cosy up to listen to another’s truth. Hear it, weigh it, taste it, if it brings lights and sounds and fireworks… or just that deep AHA moment, grasp it,  and let it marinate, eat it. It can take a while for that revelation to grow in you and for you to be able to live there, but be patient, God is not finished yet.
That revelation will grow out of YOUR life and YOUR experiences, God knows you uniquely and as you allow the life in the words to move through your being you will find it becoming your revelation, your wisdom, your truth.
You dont need to be anything other than willing to go deeper. Allow our beloved God to take you to places that are out of your comfort zone, allow Him to speak to you with words that maybe dont quite fit your current theories. That maybe dont sound quite like synagogue, as Paul did. He heard Jesus say many things that were contrary to “church”. He really was a Hebrew of Hebrews, and God stopped him and said, hang on a minute there really is MORE and VERY VERY different!.
Yes Paul became blind and was struck down so I guess that helped his willingness! But we have so much more history to go on than Paul. He was writing history.
We know so much more because his truth is there for us to read, We can eat his learnings and wait until the life that he found explodes within us, within our world, within our lived lives.

Php 3:12 Not as though I had already attained, either were already perfect, but I am pressing on, if I may lay hold of that for which I also was taken hold of by Christ Jesus.
Php 3:13 My brothers, I do not count myself to have taken possession, but one thing I do, forgetting the things behind and reaching forward to the things before,
Php 3:14 I press toward the mark for the prize of the high calling of God in Christ Jesus.
Php 3:15 Let us therefore, as many as are perfect, be of this mind. And if in anything you are otherwise minded, God shall reveal even this to you.
Php 3:16 Yet, as to what we have already attained, let us walk in the same standard, let us focus on the same thing.

Not that we have already made it, for of course we haven’t, but because there is so much MORE, we can press on and press in, drawing down deeper into the God of wonder who fills everything in every way. Laying hold of THAT, that one life that we are called to live, being present to it, living IN it, the unique, beautiful, precious space in time that is given to us to possess and make our own. Lay HOLD of that, for this is what He took hold of you for. TO be present in this LIFE with you, Christ in you, filled to the measure of all the fullness of God. CHRIST IN YOU. Let each day be NEW, learning and growing from yesterday but forgetting what is behind, what fell over yesterday, and living fully in today, digging deeper into the ground of His life in you today. Press on, press in, as God calls you higher up and farther in, growing up into the head, walking each day in that which we have already attained, living up to what we have believed and what God has marinated in us.
Dont be robbed of the beauty of your precious life by trying to live and walk another’s journey, each of our steps on the paths of our lives are ours and ours alone. No one else can live them for us, only He can live them in us as we daily become one with him.

Embrace the place where you are at, and press in, draw close so you can hear that still small voice that speaks of Home, for each of us has that unique place in the household of God, in the Bride that we are becoming. It is a place that no one else can fill, so be you and fill it.

The Gift

We all have been given the gift of our true authentic selves. That self we see when we catch his gaze. If we are willing to recognize what He sees, nothing will ever be the same again.

I wait in your presence,
not just around me but in me
reaching each dusty unused corner of my soul
I dont wait for revelation
or fireworks
for fierce words
or whispers on the wind
I just wait
Being
me
in
you
wrapped in you

You are the fraction in my soul that makes a whole
makes me whole
The fracture in my soul that lets the light in
You are the light, the LIGHT
that exploded through the fracture
and told me the TRUTH,
told me plainly,
no bullsh*t, no baffle just
steak on my plate, while I wait.
“This is you, sweetheart, here you are”
and you give me ME, like a unexpected gift,
not a birthday or Christmas, a
just because GIFT,
from YOU to me,
A gift for sharing
for exploring
not for hiding
for ignoring
so I am being
undone, unwrapped,
uncreased
BEING
Me

The Flag and the Promise

If I know anything at all in this journey, it is that in reality I know nothing. Because it is mystery, but I think I know this, that love is the key. The more I read the more I see this. That the opportunity to love and be loved as he did is the prize, it is the THAT for which Christ called us. Anything else is desert. Of the very little I know, I hope I am beginning to know this.

What do we do when we KNOW we see a city
One built without hands in the distance,
We can glimpse its towers and gates, its windows reflecting in the sun
Yet we are in the desert miles away
Part of us thinks it is a mirage, we rub our eyes and get on with surviving in the desert
But something tugs inside that we cant identify and we look up again and it’s still there,
The child inside is filled with wonder and excitement and yearns to drop everything to be THERE,
but The Adult. she ruthlessly quiets the childs voice, being pinned in the world of sand while furiously digging for water
A desert full of the millions of grains of shoulds and musts and have to do’s.
Of busy busy busy and speed and bustle and occupation.
Then one day we darent look up anymore.
BUT beloved,
There IS a city, whose builder and maker is God
A place of transparency and light and deep calling to deep
Where Love is the beginning and Love is the end
filling everything in between
Love flows like rivers from a throne of brightness and we know as we are known
This City has Love is its rooting and grounding, its habitat, its place of being.
Here we love without judgement without regard for our own self or agenda
Here we LOVE and are LOVED
And are filled to the measure of all the fullness of God
Here Grace saturates the air we breath
and we see each day as coming from the hand of Love, the hand of GOd
Here we see each other through the eyes of the one who inhabits us
The one who calls all of us BELOVED
BE LOVED
For he is the One who IS love
Here we find the rest that was promised and are safe
Here is a Kingdom filled with a body of people and He is the head.
He, the image of the invisible God
He, The firstborn of all creation,
He, whom all things were created in, through and for,
He is before all things and in Him all things hold together.
He is the beginning and the first born from the dead
All the fullness of God dwells in Him
Lover, Bridegroom, King.
There is a city, there is!
It is made without hands, and its architect and builder is God.
IT is not a mirage,its a promise, and the flag will take us through the gates

Always beloved

I am hesitant to share this, but I had chance to spend some time with a friend who has been part of my inner journey over the past few years. She drew my attention to a few things and I saw again how faithful He is to complete the good work, that he continues to do in us. That through no merit of our own, no deserving flesh of our own, He abundantly gives grace upon grace and takes those of us that are not, those of us that are the weakest, those of us that are the lowest and despised and he confounds the world with us. He is a God of Wonder, a magnificent God, my beloved God. This is how he takes each one of us on that ancient journey of becoming, where we stand at the crossroads and look, we ask for the old paths, where the good way is, and we walk in it. I want to add this from Philip Keller because it is beautiful and absolutely true:
“It is God’s knowledge of me, His careful husbanding of the ground of my being , His constant presence in the garden of my little life that guarantees my joy.
—W. Phillip Keller

I want to tell my story…..I do
Of someone, some one
from the minute I began
An intense gaze watched me forming in my mother’s womb
I was becoming
Already His in love
Already beloved
All Ready to be Loved
And suddenly there I was
Not beautiful
Not lovely
Not loved
I did not know I was already beloved
I just knew I was not loved
By one who dressed me
One who fed me
One who left me
I was not loved
My birth, my beginning
into unlovedness

But His gaze did not waver
His heart expanded for love of me
But I did not know that yet
I stumbled as a baby
I faltered as a child
Striving to find love in the faces of those around me
IF it was there it was hidden, behind masks of indifference
festering beneath, with their own hurt and pain to hide

So I shrank
I became small
Insignificant
and smaller still
Of little worth and smaller matter
So I would not be a nuisance
So I would not be a pain
So I would not be
at all
So Small
So Insignificant
That I could not be seen
at all

But He saw me
He Saw ME
and He knew
and He loved ME
He watched me with deep affection
WIlling to break heaven open
and come down when I was hurt
To rebuke those who bullied me
To race to my defence in front of my accusers
But He saw more
He knew that one day, out of the manure of a life seemingly less lived
out of pain
would come the true glorious beloved child he had always seen
no longer hidden and small
no longer believing herself insignificant or of little value
but walking the path of a journey that began at the cross of brokenness
and continues in brokenness right IN the center of the heart of the Father
ALWAYS Beloved
ALWAYS Accepted
ALWAYS