Jan 8 2021

Nature

Understanding God might seem tough especially when we look at the world around us and try to make sense of why he allows all the craziness we see on a regular basis. But once we get a feel for his nature it makes it a lot easier to realize that he is actively working to get us where he needs us to be. God’s early interaction with creation gives us some great insight into that nature; one of his first actions after creating mankind was to bless us. His relationship with Adam started with a blessing and an invitation to co-create with him by naming all the animals. God shows us right from the beginning that it is his nature to hang out with us, give us opportunities to help him, and to lavish his love on us. The problem is that we allow our perspective of God to be skewed by life’s situations and then start to wonder if he cares or if he is even listening. Throughout the Old Testament we see Israel in this constant back and forth struggle between following God or joining in on what the surrounding nations were doing. What I find so amazing about this is that God consistently responds with an invitation for the people to come back to him. Yes, there are prophecies about judgment but that judgment was only released because the nation ignored the invitation. Many of the bible’s prophetic books include God’s desire for the people to reconcile with him and have the added bonus of immediate restoration. His desire is to bless his creation. His nature is to see us succeed in the plans he has for us. It’s a new year so let’s start it off with the right perspective of what God thinks about all of us and toss aside any notion that doesn’t line up with his nature.

@genelloyd
www.nomorewounds.org


Jan 1 2021

What am I here for?

Did you ever stop and think about why you exist? Especially in the light of everything that is going on in the world (both good and bad), do you ever wonder if you have some type of divine purpose? So many people are going through life with no clue about their true identity. God has something very special planned for every person and right now is one of the most exciting times to be alive on earth because he is about to start using people in new and amazing ways. Ask him what you are supposed to be doing and go after it. And don’t let your experience determine your success. Passionately pursuing what God has for you is worth so much more than pursuing what others consider good experience. God made Solomon incredibly wise in an instant, and when you are pursing him, he hill deposit into your life exactly what you need to be the person he created you to be in the perfect moment that it is supposed to happen. You exist to uniquely impact the world in a way that only you can do. All of creation is waiting for you to realize your divine destiny and to step into that purpose. Can you see God stretching out his hand? Can you hear him telling you that you don’t have to worry because he has everything perfectly aligned? So what are you waiting for? Jump in!


Dec 18 2020

Pursuit

There’s something about a good mystery that really intrigues me. I love trying to figure out the different plot lines in a movie, TV show, or book before the story comes to an end. I actually get this strange sense of achievement or victory whenever I can unravel the mystery half way through the story. Pursuing God is a lot like a good mystery. There is so much about him that we don’t understand and each new revelation takes us deeper into the reality of who he is. I love the mystery of who God is and I love pursuing him because it is in the pursuit that we get another clue to who he is and what he is doing. Each time we draw close it’s like unwrapping another layer to his identity, seeing his face from another perspective, and catching a new glimpse of his heart’s desire for us. Sometimes I just want him to tell me what is next so I can be prepared for what is coming but that also takes the surprise out of the equation. Just like a kid waiting for Christmas morning and wondering what is behind all the wrapping paper under the tree. There is a curiosity and excitement that goes with unwrapping each one of those gifts. And there is a curiosity with unwrapping each new season God has planned for us. Even as we wait for revelation, breakthrough, or for the waiting to be over, it’s important to enjoy the thrill of the mystery because knowing what’s coming isn’t nearly as exciting as having it all revealed in the moment. Enjoy the thrill, enjoy the moment, enjoy the pursuit.

@genelloyd
Facebook
www.nomorewounds.org


Dec 12 2020

No Resume Required

How you ever thought about how your qualifications don’t measure up to God’s standards?  Have you ever wondered why God would choose you to do anything for him?  It’s a mystery why God does the things that he does but there seems to a commonality in how he chooses people.  He’s not looking for a resume full of past accomplishments.  He’s looking for a willing heart that desires to see his will be done.

David was the youngest of all his brothers and was born from an adulterous relationship but that didn’t stop God from anointing him king over Israel and making him an ancestor of Jesus.

Moses was a murderer hiding from justice but a curious event caught his attention and forever sealed his heart to the Lord’s.  And a murderer became one of the greatest leaders the earth has ever seen.

Ruth wasn’t even a Jew but she had a heart to serve her mother in law and to serve the God of her dead husband’s people.  And a gentile became the great grandmother of King David.

God doesn’t choose us based on what we have already accomplished but rather because he knows what we can accomplish.  He doesn’t select us because of our qualifications; he does it because of our heart.


Dec 4 2020

Kingdom Culture

Have you ever noticed that when you travel to a foreign country the culture of the people is often different from the culture you are used to? And the more remote of a location you travel to tends to have even more extreme cultural differences. It might seem strange to us but we generally accept these differences because of the different environments people are raised in. I have found that cultural differences even exist between different churches. This is why you can see God do amazing things in one church and then see nothing supernatural happen at all in other churches. I grew up believing in the supernatural power of God but would only see it on occasion and now I see his power on display all the time. What’s the difference? I changed my culture.

Jesus often used this phrase, “the kingdom of heaven has come near” and I tend to think that he was trying to show the people that the culture of his kingdom is different from the culture they were living in. Kingdom culture is different. It is foreign to those who aren’t familiar to it and it may even look a little strange to those who have not been exposed to it before. We often say things like “this might sound a little weird” when we approach a total stranger to demonstrate God’s love through healing, prophecy, etc. That’s our way of making people feel a little more comfortable with the supernatural but once they have an encounter with God it starts to change their culture and it doesn’t seem so weird anymore.

What we need within the church is a change of the cultural mindset. But changing a cultural mindset, especially within the church, is a tough job. It can’t be forced. It has to be done in a loving way that invites others to explore the more of God that they have been missing out on. God has so much more for all of us and if we would simply embrace the notion that “the kingdom of heaven has come near” we would start to witness even more of what God wants to do in us and through us.

Maybe it’s time for a cultural revolution.

@genelloyd
Facebook
www.nomorewounds.org


Nov 20 2020

Passionate Love

I love that God loves us so much that he has created a desire within us to have a relationship with him. I love that nothing that can separate us from his love. But I’m a little sad when I think about all the believers who settle for so little when they could have so much more.

For I am convinced that neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither the present nor the future, nor any powers, neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord. – Romans 8:38-39

Nothing can pull us away from God’s love. And yet at the same time we often shy away from the opportunity to jump into his arms and fully experience the love that he has for us. We need more passion. We need more passionate pursuit. We love that God desires to do so much for us but shouldn’t we want to do so much for him as well? Shouldn’t we want to reciprocate that love back in a similar way. Can we flip this verse from Romans to say that nothing can separate God from our love? If we can’t, then we are probably not pursuing him passionately enough.

I have this theory that if Christians would put even one percent of the passion God has for us into our end of the relationship it would drastically change the landscape of the church. We cannot allow anything…no thought, no action, no perspective…to come between us and our relationship with the one who gave everything to be part of our lives.

@genelloyd
Facebook
www.nomorewounds.org


Nov 13 2020

No little gifts

“For just as each of us has one body with many members, and these members do not all have the same function, so in Christ we, though many, form one body, and each member belongs to all the others” (Rom 12:4-5). And though we have many parts, each and every one is important. Look at one of your fingers for example. A human can easily survive if a finger is removed but it would create some difficulties in everyday tasks. We often don’t realize how much we rely on something until it is taken away and losing something that isn’t necessarily life threatening can still have a major impact on how we function. And the concept is the same within the church. Everyone is not called to the same task, if we were all pastors there would not be anyone to teach on Sunday morning (or Saturday night). If we were all apostles there would be no one for us to lead. Does that make the pastor better than the person sitting in the congregation? No. It’s simply another way to serve the body. We can all prophesy. We can all pray for the sick and expect healing. We can all passionately pursue more of God’s presence to carry to those in need. Verse 6 of this same passage says “We have different gifts, according to the grace given to each of us.” Some people carry a greater measure of specific gifts because of the task they have been given. But we tend to highlight the gifts of healing, prophecy, etc. without also recognizing the importance of the gifts of serving, encouraging, or showing mercy for example. Each of these gifts can be supernatural when the person is anointed by God for that function. There are no little gifts in the kingdom. There are no unimportant missions in the kingdom. Everyone has a critical role to play.

@genelloyd
Facebook
www.nomorewounds.org


Nov 6 2020

The Higher Truth

Jesus made a lot of promises when he was on earth and one that stands out as particularly interesting to me is what he said in Mark 16 just before he went back to heaven. He said that believers will “lay hands on the sick and they will get well.” He didn’t say they might get well, or sometimes they will get well. He said they WILL get well. So if that is the case why don’t we see more people healed? Why is the earth still full of sickness? If it is God’s will to heal everyone than why are diseases still running rampant on the earth? I don’t know the answer to that and I’m not sure if there really is a perfect explanation but I do know that there is a lot more going on than many of us realize. Isaiah 55:11 tells us that God’s word always accomplishes what he sent it to do. When he spoke the universe into existence it happened. When he commanded light to burst forth from nothingness it happened. And when he said the sick will be healed when we pray, it will be done. God’s word always trumps what we see in the physical realm. God’s word is always true regardless of what we see with our physical eyes. It is a higher truth and the higher truth is always better than a lower one. Don’t worry about what you see with your physical eyes, focus instead on what he said and know that the higher truth of his word is what will be.


Oct 23 2020

All you need is love

“All you need is love…” It’s a great start to a famous song and if you think about it, all we really need is love. When Jesus was asked about the most important commandment in the law he responded by telling us to love God will all our heart, soul, mind, and strength and to love our neighbor as ourselves. Later in 1 Corinthians 13 we see a whole chapter devoted to the topic of love. Love is the most critical component of the Christian lifestyle and if we let love take a back seat to our own desires then we will ruin the formula that radically changes lives.

Love means stopping for the one like Heidi Baker likes to say. It means putting people ahead of church programs. It means being a representative of Jesus to everyone we meet, no matter who they are or what they look like. And if we stay focused on loving everyone we meet we won’t have to worry about sinning. You can’t sin against someone you are actively loving. We can’t rob or kill someone if we are trying to love them. We can’t ignore what God is speaking to us if we are actively pouring out our love at his feet. If nothing can separate us from God’s love then nothing should be able to separate others from the love of god that should be flowing through us.

All we really need is love, everything else will fall into place if we can keep love first and love everyone on purpose.

@genelloyd
Facebook
www.nomorewounds.org


Oct 15 2020

Your life is not your own

 

There’s this paradox in the Christian life, one that many followers of Jesus have never fully grasped, that when we say yes to Jesus, we give up every one of our rights, and at the same time retain free will.

 

“Do you not know that your bodies are temples of the Holy Spirit, who is in you, whom you have received from God? You are not your own; you were bought at a price.” – 1 Cor. 6:19-20

We were bought with a price! Jesus owns us! He paid for us! When we give our life to Jesus, it ceases to be our life, it ceases to belong to us. This is why there are so many scriptures that talk about having the mind of Christ, living by the spirit, not thinking from a natural (worldly) perspective, and being a slave to Jesus (Phil. 2:5, Gal. 5:25, 1 Cor. 2:14, 7:22). Your life is not your own. At the end of the day, Jesus’ opinion is the only one that really matters. Think about that for a moment. If your life is fully committed to him, his opinion is the only one that counts.

That’s a perspective that goes against human logic, but it is in the place of total surrender that we begin to realize how great he really is, and how worthy he is to receive ALL glory, honor, praise, and obedience. What do the living creatures around the throne of God who continuously cry out “Holy, holy, holy is the Lord God Almighty” understand that we do not? They understand how worthy he really is to receive our total surrender and adoration. We have to set aside that human nature, stare into the eyes of Jesus, and ask him for his perspective on all things. We have to be willing to set aside every idea we have ever had, regardless of how important we think it is, and replace it with his idea.

Many times, his ideas don’t immediately make any sense to us. It seemed senseless to have the Israelites march around Jericho for a week. It seemed senseless for the worship team to be on the front line of Israeli military battles. It seemed senseless for William Seymour to wear a box on his head while he waited for revelation from the Lord. And the list goes on. But in every situation where humans have been obedient to God, his purpose was fulfilled in that situation. We follow his lead in all things, that’s the primary role of anyone who follows Jesus.    

I encourage you to take some time today and lay everything you are holding onto at his feet. Every perspective—church perspectives, political perspectives, family perspectives, social perspectives, educational perspectives—lay every perspective at his feet and trade them in for his perspective. It’s not an easy thing to do, but when the one who knows everything replaces your thought with his thoughts, it’s the best place to be.