Often times we view God and His word through the lenses that we have been taught or assumed ourselves to be right…I had a conversation with a friend yesterday and he shared something with me that, as a pastor I had never considered before. He quoted the scripture “God opposes the proud but gives grace to the humble”…then he said to me, “I always assumed that this meant that God was opposed to or looked down on people who were prideful…but I wonder if it’s possible that the word “opposes” actually means that He stands firm in his position when our pride rises up and we try to do things our way and no matter how hard we try to press past God’s way in favor of our own, He is immovable and we are hitting a barrier that ultimately will prove to be right.” My friend was implying that Gods opposition was actually a guardrail of Love and protection set up to keep us from going over the pride cliff that would destroy us without His protection. And that made a lot of sense to me. The older I get the more and more convinced I am that God loves us and He is faithful to complete the work that He has begun in us. As I consider my friends perspective today, I find myself questioning, are there more things about God that I have been taught or thought I knew that may have more to them than I previously assumed…? I would say…Probably.
My new book, Quantum Christianity: Believe Again – Discovering the Science of Scripture, Uncovering the Mysteries of Faith – should be out May 1st, 2015! Addressing a lot of “out of the box” thinking as it pertains to God, Theology & Science! Click here for more details
The views expressed in this blog are my own and may not reflect those of my employer
You ever read something instructional in the bible and think to yourself “why in the world would God ask that of us?” I have…A lot! But recently I began considering the possibility that God may know something that I don’t. Think about it from an ancient Hebrew perspective. God says, “if you touch something dead, then you need wash your hands 7 times.”
Of course today we know about micro-organisms and germs that if ingested will kill us but 4000 years ago, they didn’t have a microscope and if God had gone into detail about small life forms entering your body and destroying your health, they would have likely misinterpreted it and possibly even made a religion about it.
Still, You can bet that many people in history blamed God for the death of their loved one after touching something dead and not washing because they assumed God was punishing them for not adhering to the ritual, never recognizing that the command was not about the ritual, it was about their protection…God knew something they didn’t about something that at the present time in history they really had no ability to properly comprehend. In the new millennium I find myself wondering if it is possible that there are more things like this in the bible than we are unaware of.
I wonder if God actually has our best at heart and when He is telling us to do something or not do something He is doing it for our good. If so, that might actually mean that His commands are love based and not control based as so many have assumed…Just food for thought…
My new book, Quantum Christianity: Believe Again (Discovering the Science of Scripture – Uncovering the Mysteries of Faith) is scheduled for release May 1st, 2015. This book deals with many of the hard questions that most christians simply don’t know how to process. Click here for more details
The views on this site are my own and may not represent those of my employer.
As a pastor I’ve met a lot of people who are mad at God because of something that they believe He did or allowed in their lives that they felt was unfair. I’m not necessarily saying that God never allows things to happen (I quit placing absolutes on God a long time ago), but I do question how frequently our will is the primary catalyst for our experience instead of His. I wonder if it is possible that Grandma died from a heart attack at 57 years old, not because it was God’s plan for her life but because for the last 25 years she refused to put down her fork. Or if Dad’s cancer came as a result of poor lifestyle choices like, smoking for 15 years and eating preservative filled Twinkies every day, instead of God “putting cancer on him”. With scriptures that say if we know to do good and don’t, it’s sin… and the wages of sin is death, and honor God with our bodies…etc, I just find myself questioning today if many of the things that I blamed God for “allowing” in my life were more a result of me allowing it through my own choices than His will for my life…Just food for thought.
My new book, Quantum Christianity: Believe Again – Discovering the Science of Scripture – Uncovering the Mysteries of Faith is coming soon with significant elaboration on subjects like God’s will, establishing the Kingdom of God vs the kingdom of sin, how science and theology compliment each other…and much more!
I’m pleased to announce that the 4 year journey of developing and writing Quantum Christianity: Believe Again is FINALLY in the home stretch!
The finishing touches are being put into the book cover by the designer as I type this update. The interior of the book has been typeset and laid out for print and two editors are currently doing a final proof to make sure that we haven’t missed any mistakes. All things going as they should, Quantum Christianity should be available for purchase no later than May 1st, 2015!
So why did it take so long to complete?! – This book is pretty involved. I did a lot of research into the science end of it, I wrote it from a perspective and with a style that I never attempted before, and finally, working with my editor really pressed me to not settle for “good” when the content deserved a “great” effort on my end. Everything about this project stretched me.
I wrote Quantum Christianity to address some of the most difficult questions that I have heard from people who have had their faith rocked or lost it all together as a result of some sort of faith-altering moment in their lives…Everyone I know has had them, and they have all processed those moments differently. Whether you’ve experienced pain and not understood where God was in the midst of it, or you have not been able to resolve that God is who the bible says He is because of your own conflicting experience and perspectives, or perhaps you are convinced that science disproves God altogether…Quantum Christianity unveils additional information on issues that are often simply brushed off by Christian leaders as “unknowable expressions of God’s will and/or sovereignty” while directly confronting the possibility of there being “more” available to us from both and understanding and experiential perspective.
Having not only written it, I’ve read the book multiple times now myself… It is a FUN, CHALLENGING and ENLIGHTENING read! I’ve spent my entire life in church and never heard taught some of the content that is addressed in this book! I believe it will be a significant catalyst for change in the lives of those who read it!
I’m thrilled to announce that Pastor Danny Chambers (OasisChurch.tv) has written the foreword for the book. And it has been endorsed with written endorsements by – Phil Munsey (Chairman Champion Network, Joel Osteen Ministries/Lakewood Church), Dr. Dave Martin (America’s #1 Christian Success Coach and author of Twelve Traits of the Greats), Sergio De La Mora (Lead Pastor, Cornerstone Church of San Diego, author of The Heart Revolution), Mark Ramsey (Senior Pastor, Citipointe Church Australia), Tony Sutherland (International Speaker, Author, Worship Leader, Songwriter), and Clint Thomas (Author of Peace Treaty, Founder of Slow Burn Inc. and Chaos Theory Inc.).
I want to thank all of you who have contributed both financially and cooperatively to this project. Several have asked if they can still contribute and the answer is a resounding YES! Printing is the most expensive part of publishing and I am getting ready to go to the presses with this book! I am still offering the same appreciation bonuses for anyone who would like to contribute! I have a page dedicated to this information at this link: https://tattoopreacher.wordpress.com/opportunity/
I appreciate all of your prayers and support! I’m so excited for this next season!
In parallel to my own life, as I observe people around the world, it seems that the determined extension of faith is a major catalyst for breakthrough and experiencing the supernatural. Particularly interesting to me is that this extension of faith does not seem to be limited only to the Kingdom of God, leading me to believe that faith is a force (a law if you will) that was instituted to be exercised in this physical realm by human beings. I believe that this force was intended to be supernaturally creative within the Kingdom of God, but that it can also be intentionally tapped to establish opposing kingdoms as well. One thing that also appears to be consistent to me is that, regardless of the kingdom “allegiance” (or lack thereof), unbelief or the lack of the extension of faith also has universally consistent results—NOTHING. In other words, those who do not release or extend faith do not experience any benefits of it.
So I question if it’s possible that we are experiencing exactly what we expect to experience and if Henry Ford was right when he said, “Whether you think you can or you think you can’t…you’re right…”
There is so much to this subject that I cannot confine it to a 30 second sermon, but I will elaborate a bit more on it in tomorrow’s blog. Also, I have been working for several years on a new challenging book titled “Quantum Christianity” which does deal in depth with this subject (along with several other deep considerations like, “the will of God”, “how God can be who the bible says He is while allowing the world to be what it is” and many others subjects…) to be released 1st quarter of 2015… Until then, Enjoy the blogs!
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As a man thinks in his heart, so is he… So, what if his thinking is wrong…? How will he ever discover it…?
Most people only study subjects agreeing with what they already think, or choose friends that only think like they do, or watch/listen to programming that only confirms their current perspectives.
I think we are all guilty to some extent and I’ll be the first to admit that there are some people’s viewpoints that irritate me to no end but more often than not, it is the MESSENGER (and his packaging) and not the message that I take issue with.
I don’t have a problem with people having a difference of opinion or weighing their opinion against my own, but I lose interest in balanced analysis if I perceive that they themselves are not balanced. Again, not rejecting the message but rather the messenger (see American political party allegiance regardless of issue for additional perspective).
I love to learn. A passionate pursuit of mine is understanding what others think and why they do as they do. This is why I study and watch programming and documentaries on sociology, psychology, science and history. I also read quite a bit. I am currently reading Michael Turners book called Watch Me Daddy, The Cry of the Generations (ww.MichaelTurner.tv). It’s about growing up without a father or dealing with the rejection of a father (even though I grew up with a great father).
As a leader I recognize that statistics reveal that our society is producing more and more adults who grew up without the direct influence of a father in their life and unless I educate myself on how that demographic thinks or feels, then any opinion I form on the subject will be limited to my personal experience (which in this case is nonexistent).
Christians are not typically reputed to be open-minded beyond their personal experiences. Nor are they often viewed to be fair in their thinking outside of that experiential box. I’m not comfortable being lumped into that generalization so I do what I can to broaden my perspectives.
So why am I voicing this today? I don’t know if I have ever openly admitted this, but typically when I write, my readers “today” are a secondary target. I’m writing to my 6 year old son years from now, whom I will hopefully always have a direct voice of influence with, but if not, will never wonder what his father thinks when he looks back on what I have written.
There is an underlying life lesson in this particular article that took me many difficult years and life lessons to even begin to understand how to institute…Hopefully, my input broadens your perspectives and with the influence of a father who attempts to be fair and balanced, will produce a son who embraces that broader outlook much earlier than I and will be that much further along in changing the world when he is my age.
I’d like to know what you think… Are Christians more closed minded than other “types” of people or is this simply a human characteristic? What, if anything can we do to change it? Do we even need to?
I don’t “sit still” well… Can you relate?! I like it when stuff is going on all around me. I like extreme sports, fast cars, the roar of Harley Davidson motorcycles, and I LOVED the adrenaline of kicking in doors on the S.W.A.T. team.
Most nights I stay up late after everyone else is asleep. When things get quiet I scan my social networks, put on headphones and listen to music, read books, watch movies…ANYTHING to occupy my attention until my body shuts me down and I am required to sleep.
It’s the story of my life…even my initials are an example: Aaron Daniel Davis… (Give it a second and you’ll get it.)
With a few minutes to spare on my way to a staff meeting this morning, I stopped and ordered my Venti Zen green tea with 6 honey’s, sat out on the Starbucks patio, put on my headphones, tuned in my “Jesus Culture” station on Pandora, closed my eyes, exhaled and said to myself,
“Holy Spirit, what do you have for me…?”
I tried to focus, but immediately my mind went to 20 things that have already happened today…
Then I heard it, “Sit still preacher….!”
The words “Sit Still” mean something to me because my dad used to say ,”Sit still Aaron!”, all the time, when I was a child. Especially when something demanded my attention.
In that moment, I quietly paused and looked up at the window. Initially, I only saw my own reflection. The ADD took over and I thought to myself, “I like those headphones…” (Don’t judge me, you do that kind of stuff too.)
I looked through my reflection in the window and saw a room full of individuals who were, only seconds before, simply faceless “props” in the background of my life… Then, it hit me…THAT is what He has for me today…”THEM”. 7 billion+ of “them”…
The “Sit Still” lesson for me in that moment was: “When you look past YOU and your immediate distractions, then you can see what God has for you and discern what is important to HIM.” It’s definitely been something I’ve continued to ponder all day.
I’m guessing many of you are likely seeing personal parallels in my story…So, the question I have for you is, What do you think is the next step? (Share your thoughts in the comments below)
Growth and maturity are an interesting paradigm. Those who have lived it know that you become a completely different person between 18 and 28 and often times are completely different again somewhere between 30-40…Contemplating this, I asked myself today, “Knowing what I know today, what would I tell myself 20 years ago if I had a chance to talk to me at 18 years old…?”
These are the top 10 things I came up with:
1. You Think Too Highly of What You Think and Not Enough of What You Do Not Know That You Don’t Know: In naivety, when I was younger I often resented the people who would make statements like this. Now that I’m older I have additional perspective… If that initial statement rubbed you the wrong way (keep in mind that I’m talking to ME 20 years ago and then realize that you are likely the very person who needs to apply it… LOL…Sadly, I’ve met some who never learn this lesson). He who has ears, let him hear…This is one of the greatest stumbling blocks that in hindsight I could point to in my own life and have observed in other developing leaders. My advice would be to seek answers to things you know that you do not know and additional perspective on the things that you think you do know. Understanding and respecting what others think and believe without insisting on viewing their perspective through personal lenses that insist that you are right is very important in your growth and development.
2. LISTEN and REMAIN TEACHABLE: This is HUGE… Those people who love you enough to speak into you life & confront your inconsistencies are not trying to hurt you, they are trying to protect you – FROM YOU and what they realize that most cannot easily see in themselves! Those who don’t challenge you to grow are more often than not, “yes-men”… and although the “yes-man” may stroke your ego by telling you what you want to hear and agreeing with you even when you are wrong, they border on worthless from a “growth” perspective.
3. There Will Always Be Someone Bigger, Stronger and More Talented: Don’t worry about them just be you and quit trying to prove you are something more than you think others perceive you to be. God created you with your strengths on purpose. When you are ready there is not a devil in hell that will be able to keep you from being who God has called you to be… unless you have bought into a lie from that devil…(which ultimately is the paradox that will keep you from being “ready”).
4. There Are No “Scarless Warriors”: Even though you think you know enough to keep yourself from experiencing as much (or more) pain as the next guy and are even judgmental of the other guys pain because of his “Bad” choices (Which you likely believe you will never make)…You WILL endure tribulation …some because of you, some because of them (but you will endure less UNNECESSARY tribulation if you intentionally adopt #2 as a lifestyle choice)! Take it in stride, learn and grow. The difference between intelligence and foolishness is the fool refuses to take ownership of and learn from his mistakes.
5. Study People: Watch their eyes. Discern the verbal and nonverbal indicators in their word choices and actions toward you. Statistically 93% of communication is nonverbal (7% of any message is words, 38% is vocal elements and 55% is nonverbal -Facial expressions, gestures, posture, etc.) Even if you value the relationship greatly, if you are the only one prioritizing it, their actions reveal where you actually stand in their eyes. There is a reason that they only call you when they need something (and that’s ok, just be aware of the dynamics of the relationship so you don’t put more stock and energy into it than will be reciprocated, only to be disappointed when your expectation of it is unfulfilled). It’s ok when relationships that you thought would be lifelong reach an end of a season. – Spend your energies and greatest time investments where you are celebrated not just tolerated.
6. Surround Yourself With People of Character and Integrity: Don’t look solely on their outward appearance because everyone “poses” to an extent and only allow you to see what they want you to see…Some of the “biggest” people you will ever meet are half your size with completely different interests than yours…Don’t write them off on an outward appearance. Refer back to #5. In surrounding yourself with these people, be very diligent to realize that NO ONE is perfect! The mentor that you want so much to be like is still human…He will make mistakes and you will feel let down at times…It’s part of the growth process (for them and you). Be okay with that and you will be better for it.
7. BE LOYAL and Walk In Integrity Yourself. EVERYONE makes mistakes, don’t write people off when they do and be there for them when everyone else walks out. You will need someone to continue to believe in you later when you take a dive. Determine that you will do what is right because it is right even if the rest of the world walks a different path (because you will see that most of them will — even some that you greatly respect— and if you don’t determine to walk in integrity before experiencing disappointment you may be tempted to follow them down the wrong path). Integrity is doing what is right when no one is watching…
8. Pride Is SO Dangerous: don’t fall into the trap of thinking more of yourself than you should. ASK people who are older than you, “If you could say one thing to you, 10, 15, 20 years ago (however much older they are than you) what would you tell you…?” then LISTEN! One of the best words of advice I ever received was from a friend who told me, “The second you begin to believe your own hype, you are on your way out…” Pride and arrogance are the downfall of so many leaders…
9. Love People, Forgive and Move On: Determine each day that you are going to walk in love. Oftentimes it’s not going to be easy and there will be ample opportunity for offense but the days that you will regret most in life are the days that you chose to respond outside of love. AND some of the best days you will ever experience will come as a result of choosing to walk in love (even when it wasn’t convenient). It’s a choice that becomes easier and more habitual the more you exercise it.
10. Above All Else, Learn To Listen To The Leading of The Holy Spirit: If there is a “formula” for success, THIS IS IT and it can come in a lot of forms…CULTIVATE THEM ALL…
God will lead you through:
a. His word
b. Others He sends to you to speak into your life
c. Books on subjects that you need to develop
d. Teachings from people that you respect (and sometimes don’t necessarily respect or even “like” if you are willing to listen beyond your initial perception)
e. Daily interactions – God often teaches in circumstances that on the surface appear insignificant.
f. And ultimately God’s voice speaking to your spirit — which at times may contradict one of the above 9 points of advice.
~ For example, there may be a time that you KNOW you are not prioritized in a relationship and God will lead you to be consistent in communication and reaching for them anyway. There may be times when you are dealing with someone who loves you and are speaking into your life and the Holy Spirit reveals to you that what they have told you may be right for 98% of people, but in your circumstances you need to do something differently…in which case you LISTEN RESPECTFULLY (don’t contradict them with what you think you know), thank them for caring enough to speak into your life, tell them you will weigh what they have said, and then ask God for clarity on His perspective in the given situation…because, even though you think you know, you could be wrong in your initial assessment). Ultimately you have to follow what you believe God is leading you to do, and sometimes, even then you will make mistakes. The important thing is being intentional to learn to follow His leading in your life while not being too proud to receive correction in the middle of doing what you previously may have thought was right…
For me, most of these have been painful lessons that I have experienced over the years that have caused me to grow in understanding and wisdom…Almost all of them learned in situations that had the potential to make me bitter…But I have chosen rather to allow them to make me better. God knows I’m well aware that I haven’t “arrived” and as a matter of fact, I’m more aware now than ever of how much that I DON’T know! It will be interesting in 20 more years to see what I would write to myself today… but hopefully one or two of these will help some up and coming leader to avoid a pitfall that I dove face-first into…
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During a recent conversation with an MD friend, our conversation jumped from a very controversial “sin” topic to talking about a debilitating disease.
Emotionally, I switched gears from feeling somewhat “opinionated” to feeling overwhelming compassion for the group of children suffering with the syndrome that we began discussing. It was in that transition that I felt like I experienced a moment of clarity and insight on the subject of “sin” and how I, as a Christian should view it…
I’ve come to believe that sin is a sickness and its bondage is symptomatic of the disease… Sin is its own cancer-producing malignant growth rooted in the fruit of a trespassing kingdom. Much like disease, it is something that has the capacity to plague our flesh and its purpose is to rob us of our peace, health, and well-being while ultimately affecting how we relate to God and function in this life…
In Luke 4:18 Jesus declares,
18 “The Spirit of the Lord is upon Me,
Because He anointed Me to preach the gospel to the poor.
He has sent Me to proclaim release to the captives,
And recovery of sight to the blind,
To set free those who are oppressed
Jesus passed judgment on sickness, not by condemning those who are sick but by releasing them from the bondage of their infirmity.
I can’t imagine myself ever condemning someone who is diseased for being sick…Yet how many times have I been guilty of judging someone’s inadequacy or failure to overcome because I refused to see his or her “SIN” for the intruding bondage that it actually is.
Jesus rebuked the disciples when they failed to deliver the power that He had demonstrated for them and commissioned them to carry. I just wonder if it is possible that we have accepted some type of “form” that appears “godly” to us or has become universally acceptable in the church but in the process have denied the power that God intended for us to deliver to this world as his ambassadors.
If we are not walking in the power and exercising the authority to release people who want to be free from their bondage, then, quite honestly I question whether or not we have any right to an opinion at all as it pertains to that which we believe they are bound by.
It’s not enough to believe “sinning is wrong and God could free them…” if we ourselves aren’t walking in a kingdom establishing, yoke breaking, authority demanding capacity as one who is commissioned by Christ to exercise dominion over all the works of the devil.
The Bible states, “Those who KNOW their God will be strong and do great exploits…” Yet, I can’t help but wonder if many of us have redefined an “exploit” in our religious experience as, “a great, emotionally moving sermon or worship service about how awesome God is or could be…” because for many, that’s about the extent of how they “KNOW” Him and is the beginning and end of their “exploit” paradigm…
I’m just convinced there is more.
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Also I have a “Quantum” book coming out this fall. The details on its release will be available here so click the “Sign Me Up” button to the right to receive updates on new posts.
If God’s chosen people, (the children of Israel) had decided that they were content to be out of Egypt and simply set up camp on the other side of the Red Sea never pursuing the Promised Land, they would have always slept with yesterday’s enemy and enslaver at their doorstep.
Today I’m contemplating that perhaps in many respects the Body of Christ has done just that, gotten far enough out of “Egypt” to realize they have more freedom than they had yesterday, but never really pursuing the fullness of what God intended for them and subsequently sleeping with their enslaver ever at their back door while often times being critical of the ones who are discontent with settling and actually in pursuit of what God has promised.
My Bible says there is more than what is commonly accepted as “normal Christian living” (which often more resembles “dying” than “living” or “trying not to bleed to death” instead of being “more than a conqueror”)…I’m not being critical, I’m just calling a spade a spade! I’m tired of the excuses, I’m tired of the faithless doctrines created by wounded leaders…We’ve all experienced “loss”(those who know me well, know i’ve experienced a ton of it, with a big serving of injustice to top it off) but I’m not content to accept a doctrine that contradicts the promises of God and makes “loss” the “norm”… I’ve already experienced and seen with my own eyes much more of the “miraculous” than many even believe is possible…
I’m no longer content to continue to fight the enemy of yesterday. If they want another piece of me then they will have to chase me as I seek out the enemy standing in the way of my tomorrow…I’m done with yesterday…
I will pursue the promise…
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Also be looking for my new book Quantum Christianity to be released this fall.