Called Out

 

Why MeI’ve been “called out” because I’ve done something wrong or stupid. It’s another example of accountability. It’s not pleasant being called out, but it is sometimes necessary. I can’t always see my actions from the proper perspective. I’ve given several people in my life permission to “call me out” if I do something stupid or wrong. My wife has called me out on many occasions for sure. I have close friends who do the same. I seek counsel in areas that my knowledge and experience are lacking so that I won’t be “called out” later. I see law enforcement as “calling me out” if I’m speeding or pushing the limits of the law.

I am a follower of the Lord and I have made a commitment to follow Him. I want my life to honor Him. I am trying to live by the call of the Lord on my life. I want him to prompt the little decisions in my life as well as monumental decisions that I face.

I started reading 1st Peter this morning and I love his perspective because He walked with Jesus and saw His life and ministry up close and personal. Check this out…

Though you have not seen him, you love him; though not seeing him now, you believe in him, and you rejoice with inexpressible and glorious joy, because you are receiving the goal of your faith, the salvation of your souls.

13 Therefore, with your minds ready for action, be sober-minded and set your hope completely on the grace to be brought to you at the revelation of Jesus Christ. 14 As obedient children, do not be conformed to the desires of your former ignorance. 15 But as the one who called you is holy, you also are to be holy in all your conduct; 16 for it is written, Be holy, because I am holy. (1 Peter 1:8-9,13-16 CSB)

I’m facing everyday decisions with Him directing me and prompting me. I have ignored Him at times and regretted it. I have pushed back or ignored being called out and held accountable. I have been humbled and convicted of my sin. I want to walk humbly before the Lord every day asking for His counsel on the smallest daily decisions. I want His help as a Christian. I want His help as a husband. I want His help as a Dad. I want His help as friend. I want His help as a REALTOR.  I am open to be called out by people who know me and love me deeply. If you feel like you need to ask me about decisions that I make I want to always be willing to explain why I do what I do or say what I say. The Word of God often calls me out- I’m open to others close to me calling me out as well.

Pressing On!

Dwayne

What I Know

Grace AND TruthThere are lots of things that I still don’t know. I learn new things every day. I am constantly learning “short cuts” on my computer. I’m learning new technology tricks daily. I’m discovering more insight into leadership and love with every passing day. I realize that there are lots of other things that I know nothing about. I have to study to understand the latest crisis facing our nation. I have to study other cultures to understand how they think and how they live. People of our own nation sometimes puzzle me and I don’t understand how they think and live. There are lots of things I don’t know about and some things I’m feel very confident in what I know. Check this out…

12 But God is my King from long ago;

    he brings salvation on the earth.
13 It was you who split open the sea by your power;

    you broke the heads of the monster in the waters.
14 It was you who crushed the heads of Leviathan

    and gave it as food to the creatures of the desert.
15 It was you who opened up springs and streams;

    you dried up the ever-flowing rivers.
16 The day is yours, and yours also the night;

    you established the sun and moon.
17 It was you who set all the boundaries of the earth;

    you made both summer and winter. (Psalm 74:12-17 NIV)

 

My convictions about the Lord are firm. I know things about Him that I’ve discovered by just doing life with Him. I know about His forgiveness. I know about His mercy and grace. I know of His amazing love. Most of what I know about the Lord is not up for debate. I can’t be convinced that He isn’t real. I can’t be convinced that He didn’t come to earth.

I believe in God the Father.

I believe in Jesus Christ – His Son.

I believe in the Holy Spirit – three yet ONE.

I believe that He lives in me.

I believe that He’s preparing a place for me.

I believe in loving others because He loves me.

I believe in eternal life.

I believe He’s a real as the air I’m breathing as I write this.

I’m so thankful that Creator God loves me and wants to live in me and through me. His Presence and His Power made a believer out of me a long time ago.

Pressing On!
Dwayne

Opinion

Man holding microphoneI most definitely have an opinion about lots and lots of things. My wife may ask my opinion about a certain pair of pants and she wants my opinion. I have an opinion on most world events. I have an opinion about our governor, congress, the president and everything in between. I probably have an opinion on just about everything. It sounds pretty crazy, but most everyone I know also has an opinion about everything. I used to jokingly let them know that they were entitled to their own stupid opinion even though mine was mostly right! J

Spiritual opinion can really get me in trouble. If I feel convicted about certain things, I can preach that as “truth from scripture” to others.  Paul was teaching about this to the Colossae church. It can be very dangerous and deceptively destructive while appearing helpful. Check this out….

6 So then, just as you received Christ Jesus as Lord, continue to live your lives in him, 7 rooted and built up in him, strengthened in the faith as you were taught, and overflowing with thankfulness.
See to it that no one takes you captive through hollow and deceptive philosophy, which depends on human tradition and the basic principles of this world rather than on Christ.
20 Since you died with Christ to the basic principles of this world, why, as though you still belonged to the world, do you submit to its rules: 21 “Do not handle! Do not taste! Do not touch!”? 22 These rules, which have to do with things that are all destined to perish with use, are based on merely human commands and teachings. 23 Such regulations indeed have an appearance of wisdom, with their self-imposed worship, their false humility and their harsh treatment of the body, but they lack any value in restraining sensual indulgence. (Colossians 2:6-8; 20-21 NIV)

 

Most of the time, my opinion is worth just what you paid for it – nothing. That can be true with the opinion of others as well. The older I’ve gotten, the wiser I realize my parents and older people are. Their opinions can sometimes be based on experience and knowledge rather than simply how they “feel” about a particular subject.

This passage of scripture reminded me that my instruction book on living is the Word of God. I should “TEST” all opinions by the Word. I should be careful about what I say and do based opinion. There is great liberty in walking with the Lord. My spiritual opinion may “sound” wise, but indeed it may be hollow and based on tradition and worldly principles rather than on Christ. My opinion can actually be a stumbling block to knowing the Lord more fully. I need to lean into and onto the truth of God’s Word and rely a lot less on my opinion and other’s opinions about what to do and when to do it. Now there are some people whose opinion I really value – but it should be based on their journey with the Lord more than anything.  I’m really seeking the truth more than opinion. My convictions should be based on the truth of the Word of God over opinion every time. Most everyone has a nose on their face and they have an opinion – it doesn’t mean I need to hear from it!

Pressing On!
Dwayne

I Work On Sunday

Making a planI grew up believing it was wrong to work on Sunday. We were taught at a very young age “to remember the Sabbath and keep it holy”.  So no one in our family worked on Sunday. As I grew up and began to study the Word, I realized that the Sabbath was actually Saturday and that what the scripture was speaking of was a concept of a rest day, much like the Lord did after He created everything.

“By the seventh day God had finished the work He had been doing; so on the seventh day He rested from all of His work.” (Genesis 2:2 NIV)

The Sabbath rest is more about taking a rest day from your labor than it is not to work on Sunday. Now the early church met on the first day of the week for worship, so it became an obvious day to take a Sabbath rest.  I guess my point is: there are several biblical concepts and teachings that we often turn into indisputable rules and they were never meant to be treated that way.  Paul was speaking to the Romans specifically about some of these “rules” that they were trying to impose on each other.  Check this out…

5 One person considers one day more sacred than another; another considers every day alike. Each of them should be fully convinced in their own mind. 6 Whoever regards one day as special does so to the Lord. Whoever eats meat does so to the Lord, for they give thanks to God; and whoever abstains does so to the Lord and gives thanks to God. 7 For none of us lives for ourselves alone, and none of us dies for ourselves alone. 8 If we live, we live for the Lord; and if we die, we die for the Lord. So, whether we live or die, we belong to the Lord. (Romans 14:5-8 NIV)

The concept of working on Sunday is not new. The preachers who were preaching that you shouldn’t work on Sunday, were in fact, themselves working on Sunday! There are health-care workers, emergency workers and lots of others working positions that remain open. Keeping the Sabbath holy is more about a concept than a specific day of the week for everyone. I believe in the Sabbath rest principle. I believe that I should take a day to rest and reflect on what God is doing and what He wants to do in me and through me. I don’t believe people who “work on Sunday” are full of sin. I believe that we all need to have a day of rest and for many people in our culture, Sunday is a great day because the banks are closed, the post office is closed and Chic-fil-a  is closed…to name a few.

My convictions regarding many concepts in scripture might be stricter than others, but they are my convictions. It’s wrong of me to pass judgment on you for your convictions and wrong for others to pass judgment on me for mine. There are indisputable concepts that Jesus taught that are not negotiable for any of His followers. As I study His Word and seek His heart, my convictions become stronger and stronger. My love for others becomes more genuine and tolerant of their spot along the journey. I want others to seek the Lord with their whole heart, but I’m most responsible for my own journey. I don’t want my convictions to cause others to stumble, but I don’t want to stumble in my journey either.  I’m determined NOT to pass judgment on others because the Only Lawgiver and Judge Who really matters is God Himself. He can handle all of that just fine. I will continue to work at leading worship occasionally on Sunday which is work, I will continue to show houses on Sunday on occasion AND I will continue to take a much needed rest from my work and listen to the Lord!

Pressing On!
Dwayne

Open Mind

Open vs Closed Mind - Toggle SwitchI’ve heard people talk about being “open minded” and “close minded”. I feel like there are times when I’ve been on each side. I have convictions that are my beliefs that are set in concrete. My convictions are not open for debate. So there are probably things that I’m pretty close-minded about because of what I believe. There are things that I’m open-minded to that others might be close-minded too. I try really hard to live out my convictions because they come from the Word of God. Jesus opens the minds of His followers after His resurrection. Check this out…

45 Then he opened their minds so they could understand the Scriptures. 46 He told them, “This is what is written: The Messiah will suffer and rise from the dead on the third day, 47 and repentance for the forgiveness of sins will be preached in his name to all nations, beginning at Jerusalem. 48 You are witnesses of these things. 49 I am going to send you what my Father has promised; but stay in the city until you have been clothed with power from on high.”
50 When he had led them out to the vicinity of Bethany, he lifted up his hands and blessed them. 51 While he was blessing them, he left them and was taken up into heaven. 52 Then they worshiped him and returned to Jerusalem with great joy. 53 And they stayed continually at the temple, praising God. (Luke 24:45-53 NIV)

I want the Lord to keep opening my mind to know more of Who He is and what He’s doing in my life. He is always working behind the scenes multi-tasking to show me Who He is. I must open the eyes of my heart as well as the eyes in my head if I’m going to see Him for Who He is and notice what He’s doing in my world. He sent the Holy Spirit to live in and through me. This is really big when it comes to seeing things and feeling things that He’s doing. The Holy Spirit opens my mind to more of Him and less of me.

Pressing On!
Dwayne