goodness is coming

goodness is coming

problems will go away

like the prayer

take away my difficulties

that their absence

my show forth

your presence

its a confidence

I didn’t have before

that things will be ok

because you will make sure

they are ok

never had a thought like that before

the impossible?

The Impossible?

When you eliminate the impossible, whatever remains, no matter how improbable must be true.” quoted by Harlan Coben in Long Lost attributed to the Sherlock Holmes character.

About a year ago from this April I read the book, The Pursuit of God by AW Tozer. Towards the end of the book he describes a spiritual experience that he reports is available to whomever wants it. While I was reading the book something like what he described seemed to start happening with me to where after reading the book I did not want what he was describing because it seemed to have started already. While I was reading something was telling me, “you are about to get your answer what you have been looking for.” I didn’t know I was consciously looking for something but that is what I heard.

Afterwards and to this day I seem to be more aware of god’s presence in my life, in the quiet and at other times as well. To feel his presence has been a desire of mine for a long time. Also, afterwards and to this day I have wanted to listen to worship music.

I had not done that in a while before this happened and when I do often times I cry. The emotion is hard to describe. It must be what praise feels like and what people who worship feel when worship moves them to tears. In the book he did not say to expect anything like that to happen it just did.

Even though this change is impossible to deny at times I still have my doubts. But I came across this quote I quoted above and it helps. Besides saying that my higher power has changed my heart and that that change seems to be permanent I have really no other explanation for this. Someone could say it is some psychological thing from my unconscious but I really don’t buy that. I have to say that for me, even though my doubts want to say that this is highly improbable it is the only conclusion that makes sense to me.

I have struggled with, is god real for a long time. This for me is evidence for me anyway, that is indisputable. Tozer in the book said that that would be the case. That for him anyway this new way of knowing god put his doubts to rest. Are mine at rest? Maybe, maybe not. All I know is that however crazy this sounds to my rational and scientific mind there is nothing scientific about it. Other than the fact that this phenomena for me is observable and has been reproduced for me I don’t know how many times since that time nor who knows how many times it will occur for me again.

This makes me GREATLY look forward to leading worship again. After this happened I did not think that it was time for me to go back to the church as a pastor and worship leader but circumstances seem to be leading me in that direction. I have tried a lot of other things that have not worked out. That’s all for now.

Shalom ya’ll,

Salvador

for us

I have been thinking lately how that if there is anyone who is for us it is god.  The bible presents a god who deeply deeply cares for humanity and will spare no expense to communicate that care and love.  And I know lots of people who have left the church because of the perverted way that god was communicated to them while they were in church.  A judgmental god who is watching and looking for you to do something wrong so he can sentence you to an eternity of punishment.   How someone can look at the life and death and resurrection of Jesus and come up with that is beyond me but they do.   The whole purpose for his coming was to give to the world he loves, life and hope and peace and grace and joy.  He himself said he came to judge no one.  But he saw in the religious leaders evil and darkness and hardness of heart so he called that out.  He gave his life for us his very own life. His father struck his own son dead so that we could know him and love him and worship him for all of eternity. I have doubted god’s good will and have wondered does he really care. But for today on this day I think of the Bible as a record of god’s concern for us a record of his faithfulness to us even when we are not faithful to each other or to him. It is a relentless pursuit of humanity. Even in judgment his purpose is to bring us back to him. I am glad that things that are bad for me have their consequences that some of the things that I have wanted to satisfy me besides god have not done it. That I have known and know the pleasure of his company and will I believe forever. I hope I can keep this persective of god who is for me and the bible as a record of his desire to know the people he has created. Its all about us and his love for us.

how?

HOw does something like Dorian happen in the world of a loving god?   No matter what they went through they always ended up praising him.  One guy burned at the stake foretold as he burned that someone would come after him they would not be able to shut up.   Beaten and thrown in prison they praised him that they could suffer for him on account of him.   For me he is not like anyone I have ever met.  I have felt his presence and it is not easy to describe.   Full not empty.   That is pretty much the best I can do.  I want to understand but I don’t.   There is a lot I don’t understand and haven’t wanted to accept and still believe in  Wonderful or Beyond Understanding.  That was what he called himself when Sampson’s parents met him.  Also a name given to god in Isaiah 9.   This is the name that works best for me:  beyond understanding.  It fits with my experience of him, not easy to describe.   I knew a guy in AA who is gone now.   That was what he thought too, someone I don’t really understand or can wrap my head around, but who I really cannot deny the existence of especially because of the changes that have taken place with me that have no other explanation.   I can’t wait to start being a pastor again.  Just thought I would add that.

Shalom ya’ll,

Salvador

His Dulcinea

He died for me.   All that that means I cannot say.   When he looks at me he sees his Dulcinea.    I was his Dulcinea before I gave a rat’s ass about him.   I have always been so.   So it means that what others think of me really doesn’t matter.   Even though I can still be afraid and worry about what they may do.   One day I really won’t care.   The voice of their condemnation really won’t matter at all and it really doesn’t matter now.   I think it means too that we are all his Ducinea.  How that works I am really not sure.  It means too that the need for guilt and shame is over.   I honestly don’t do a lot of things that produce those feelings and that is his doing and not mine.  I am free to worship him in a way I have never known before but I will know for all of eternity.  That’s a mind blower for sure.   I am free to care about others without giving in to manipulation.   Still working on that but getting better.   I am in him and he is in me.  That is what matters most not what others think.   Others opinions are reflections of how they feel about themselves anyway.  Some are very good at projecting that onto others.   The guilt and shame they cannot tolerate in themselves or come to grips with.   Our leader a prime example of a really really sick human being.  Whose day is coming I hope and pray.

But for me I am his Dulcinea.   His view of me not affected by anything bad I have done as he made the supreme sacrifice for that and for all I think.  And so I get to love and worship him and love others the way he does and would.   That’s the goal.

Shalom,

Salvador

looking for an answer

I’m looking for an answer wondering what is going on.  My higher power gave me one one time and I was wonderful.  Maybe this will be.   My mood has been messed up.   The last time that happened my mom died.   Nobody is dying right now as far as I know.   Dad seems to be ok.   My fear:  the bad mood is back to stay but I don’t know.   I am looking to go back into a career I left and I think it will be good.   There are fears fueled by caffeine.  I’m working on that.   None today so far.   So a big change, I hope, is coming.   I wonder if that is it.  Help higher power me to stop doubting and being hard on myself.   It doesn’t help.   I can see myself succeeding and really enjoying this new work.   That is new to me feeling that way.   So maybe what is that I have not felt that way maybe ever.   Before in this career I didn’t now I do.   The change?   I believe my higher power is helping me do things I couldn’t do before.  I know my heart has changed.  I know that for sure and maybe when your heart changes you can do things that you could’t before.   I can privately and personally I can worship in a way that I couldn’t before.   Now I want to go public with that to share that with a faith community and that is the fear of success or whatever.   It is safe with no other people involved.  With others involved I have less control I don’t know.    Not sure if a committee is interested in me yet.   That has been hard, talk to them then they disappear. One day at a time.   Higher power if this is it, settle my heart.

tired

I’ve been tired today.  That’s ok.  I have been in his presence the whole day and that has been the good thing to come from a depression fatigue I have had.  It isn’t and hasn’t been as bad as it used to be.  And may be less fearful of it than before.   I know good things are coming, a democratization of the Spirit I hope where god’s spirit is more plain to see.   The prophets talk about a time where the world feels more safe and those who die at 100 are considered to be a mere youth, where the earth will  be filled with the knowledge of the Lord as the waters cover the sea, where his praises are heard all over the place, where his glory shines and people around the world come to the light to bask in it.   Hoping to experience this on a congregational level soon and believe that when he is ready nothing will stop him.  Richard Foster talks about visiting one church where the spirit was felt so strongly that when they opened the door they took a step back before going in.   That is what I am talking about!   Where worship is heartfelt and tears are not are not uncommon.

if you have left…….

If you have left your family for me you will be rewarded.   That is what my higher power said.   It was not my intention to leave.   I got discarded by someone.  Yes, it was painful.   And yes I am glad it happened given how crazy the situation was and people in it.  And yes there is grief.  Grief to not have the opportunity to parent my kids.  Grief that I could not protect them as I wanted.   I know them know and pray for them and am a blessed man.   I know my higher power in a way that I did not know was possible and believe that all the losses were necessary for that.   See Phillipians 3 were Paul basically says the same thing.    As I have written I anticipate that the church I go to will be blessed by all this as well.   And I know that what I have to give does not come from me.   It was given to me.   And started with something very simple and still is simple to me.   Someone told me you could feel god’s presence and when I heard that I saw in my heart a great desire for that, certainly unquenchable.   But it is not meant to be quenched, satisfied, yes but not quenched.   I read recently one of my old professors said that Yahweh is the absolute value in this life and in the one to come.  I think that is the words he used.   It goes along with what I heard over a year ago. “It doesn’t matter.”   What doesn’t?  Well for me just about everything except my god.  I am still in some of the same thought patterns of worry and over-thinking about things, but trust is growing.  I thought when I was aware of him all the time that those things would not be there but it is only a matter of time.

Lately have been thinking that whatever my higher power wants to do can’t be stopped.  That was what a wise Jewish leader said to the leaders of his day.   If what is happening (early Christianity) is from men it will die, the same way other people who had followers died and their followers disbanded.   But, he said, if it is from god you will not be able to stop it and you will find yourself fighting god himself.   The otherwise dumb asses listened to him after abusing the ones they were jealous of.   I think the same it true.   Of course we think, so what the hell is he doing anyway.   He does seem to like to hide.   That is starting to bother me less as far as my doubts go.   And more joy is on the way too I believe.   Thanks for letting me share 🙂

Salvador

movie inspiration

The other day I was watching a movie.  I forget the name but this guy goes to work one day and no one is there, none of his co-workers.  Oh yeah, Erased.   So no co workers and he has no identity and people are after him.  He and his daughter are on the run and at one point he stops and says to her.   The safest place for you right now is by my side listening to what I tell you.   Will you trust me?   I heard that and I heard my higher power’s voice saying the same thing to me.   So I said yeah.  I will.   So that is what I am trying to do.   Just listen.   Most of the time it is not words but a sense that someone is by my side and that I’m not alone.

Lately I have been interviewing for a job going back to church work again.  Some things have happened that for me are pretty obvious signs that I should do that that my higher power is real and some good things are on the way for me and wherever I go.  Some good things happening inside me.  I seem to understand the bible better/more from the heart.  Worship is more from the heart.  A year ago reading The Pursuit of God started these things and they will last forever I believe.  It really blows my mind!!!    And the church will benefit.  That’s for sure.   And nothing will stop it 🙂

Bill Wilson, in the big book says that god is the director and we are the actors.  Quit trying to be the director is his point.  I also have been thinking that my higher power is the actor in me as well.  If I listening he can guide me and the heart that he has and is changing is mine.   I have new desires and see things from a different and better perspective.  There is more assurance of the reality of his presence.   See the description of faith in Hebrews 12 I think it is.    He is growing MY faith.  I still worry but he is helping me with that.   And having more of a sense that all I need to do is listening and he will guide me.  For a long time I didn’t have that sense at all, just seemed to be wandering in the dark.    Thanks for letting me share.

Salvador

God

God seems to like to hide.  Is that it, not sure but for me he has been very real lately after reading the Pursuit of God a little over a year ago.  I am about to be a pastor again in a church somewhere.   I think God is going to do some cool things like show himself in worship and enable us as a congregation to worship from the heart.   This kind of blows my mind since I am not sure what will happen exactly, but I think it will be good, real good.

on being positive

Just got back from an AA meeting.  Good stuff.  I get a better perspective when I am out of the house and not sure why.  In the house I can feel god’s presence and that is big.   Some of the negative is getting in my head about narcissists I have known and how I have been treated and sometimes still am.   Realizing that a current relationship is probably not as healthy as I thought it was and what to do about that.   Right now I am not talking to him.  His focus can be too negative.  I am the guy who doesn’t have any money and needs my truck fixed in his eyes.   Well, that is not who I am part of my current situation but not who I am by a long shot!!!!

I am going to a good place I think.   I will be leading a congregation in worship.   Since the change a year ago worship has become real important to me.  Until yesterday every time I do it privately I cry.   Trying not to make a big deal about the fact that I didn’t yesterday.   Thinking that corporate worship is going to be wonderful.   God’s felt presence continues to be with me and I will take that into every single worship experience I have from now on.   Wow, that blows my mind it is so good!!     Thinking that at some point that will be a shared experience with me and the congregation.   I will find a place where I can continue to help others which is what I love to do.  I believe I have a gift of healing and recently helped someone with a resentment they were carrying.  I am thinking that I have a lot more to do in the future.   I will continue to help people with my counseling skills.  Need to find a place where I can do that.  Head of staff of a big church may not work.  I have heard from two churches who are interested in me!!!!!!   Go Mark, go Mark!!!   One of them may be fighting so they may be out.   The other is two small churches.   The issue there is can they grow or will they die?    But hopefully the good worship and a helping/healing ministry I will have in the church and community will help it grow.  I really believe that is god’s job and not mine.  I can do things to get the word out, but will AA there is the priniciple of attraction and not promotion.   And the Holy Spirit added to numbers in the New Testament.   I wouldn’t want every discussion I have with people to be about how to attract people.   With other good things going on it doesn’t have to be.   It wasn’t when I was in MS before but there was anger that I did not “save” the church.   Not interested in that again.  That is negative thinking anyway.

It really does floor me that I am aware of god’s presence most of the time now.  I can’t let the significance of that get lost.   And the bible is different too.  I have been wanting to read it lately.   That has been a change for the good I think.   And with being less emotional I may worship more, not sure.   I have been hesitant because every time it has felt some intense.   Maybe with less intensity I will do it more often.  We’ll see.

Salvador