Middle East Monday: Eric Metaxas interviews the “Vicar of Baghdad,” Canon Andrew White. – YouTube

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Me, Andrew, and Lina in Baghdad in 2011

 

Andrew White is a dear friend of mine. He is the person who invited me to go to Baghdad with him in 2011, and we went! We share a deep love for Iraq, the Middle East, hope for the nations, peacemaking, absurdity, and revolutionary risk-taking (otherwise known as “faith”).

If you would like to see him speak in person, you can sign up for the newsletter here.

 

Eric Metaxas interviews the “Vicar of Baghdad,” Canon Andrew White. – YouTube.

Passivity to the majesty of the Lord Jesus

“I think the biggest enemy in the church is not the devil. It’s our own passivity to the majesty of the Lord Jesus. At some point the Good News becomes okay news and Christianity is no longer life changing but merely life enhancing, and Jesus doesn’t change people into radicals anymore, just nice people. The church becomes dull, predictable, and monotonous. 

 

Here’s the thing about dullness, what it means is we’ve lost our capacity to be simple before God. We’ve lost the ability to live in wonder and astonishment.”

– Graham Cooke

* impossABILITY *

“In order to attain the impossible, one must attempt the absurd.”

– Miguel de Cervantes Saavedra (Spanish writer, author of the masterwork ‘El quijote’, 1547-1616)


“Love feels no burden,

thinks nothing of trouble,

attempts what is above its strength,

pleads no excuse of impossibility;

for it thinks all things lawful for itself,

and all things possible.”

– Thomas Kempis

My friend and Central Asia travel partner, Laura, assembled a DREAM BOOK consisting of the dreams of students at Bethel School of Supernatural Ministry, where I am currently finishing my second year. I suggest browsing our dreams here:

http://www.blurb.com/bookstore/detail/2167122

Be inspired. Write out your own dreams. Smash boxes. Dream the “impossible” dream. : )

Get out of your comfort zone and into HIS.

“As long as this deliberate refusal

to understand things from above,

even where such understanding is possible,

continues,

it is idle to talk of any final victory over materialism.”

C.S. Lewis, The Weight of Glory

(By materialism, I would assert this refers simply to placing earthly things over heavenly things in worth.)

Someone else once said, “Things are not what they seem.”

We MUST go UP. We MUST ask the Lord to help us get HIS perspective. We must believe that much of the wisdom of God is foolishness to the world. We must let our cells, our minds, our emotions, our worldview DRINK love.


Let your worldview DRINK love. Let it be intoxicated with LOVE. LOVE LOVE LOVE LOVE LOVE.


Even right now, take ten minutes and lay on your floor or be still at your desk and say, “Father, I want to be intoxicated on your love. I want to commune with you spirit to spirit. I want to know you past my comfort zone and INTO yours.”

haha. Get into God’s comfort zone. Now THAT is a fun place.

Once upon a time there were some believers who heard of a man named Paul – a man who used to kill believers, their own friends and family members. They could and would keep their distance. And then God did what no one seemed to expect: He introduced Himself to Paul on a road one day. Pressing past their comfort, many welcomed him in. Pressing past their own experiences, they believed that God could do the “impossible.” Maybe some thought they had the right to despise him… but after that Damascus-going-plodding-moving day, they did not have a right to despise this man.


And you know the craziest part?

Before that Damascus day,

that fated, history-changing, metaphor-ridden, brilliant, fantastic, incredible, unthinkable,

Damascus Day

they did not have a right to despise him either.

It’s always the right time to THINK FANTASTICALLY

For an answer Jesus called over a child, whom

he stood in the middle of the room, and said,

“I’m telling you, once and for all, that unless you

return to square one and start over like

children, you’re not even going to get a look at

the kingdom, let alone get in. Whoever becomes

simple and elemental again, like this child, will

rank high in God’s kingdom. What’s more, when

you receive the childlike on my account, it’s the

same as receiving me.

Matthew 18:2-5 (The Message)

The Sprinkle Warehouse

God is extravagant.


Sometimes He goes to pour sprinkles on your cupcake and the lid falls off and ALL the sprinkles pour out.

He looks to see if you think He did it accidentally, and when you look back at Him in shock, you see that behind Him is an entire warehouse FULL of sprinkles.


It was definitely NOT an accident.


He simply cannot contain Himself.


Transforming a Community in Colombia

Stephen and Sara transform space. YES!

Hola!

This week my friends Stephen and Sara Otis are moving into a barrio in Colombia. They have been living in Bogota, Colombia for a number of months, but tomorrow they plan to move deeper into the alleyways of buildings and hearts and families they are investing in. I am inspired by their love and willingness to dive in. It’s a great moment to be praying for them as they shift. It’s also a wonderful time to celebrate the beautiful transformation underway in Colombia!!!!!!

You can visit their blog here and also make donations into their lives.

http://www.bridgethelove.com/

Also, there is an INCREDIBLE, INSPIRING video series called “Transformations” which includes the story of city-wide transformation in Cali, Colombia. Check it out! Haha! It gives me chills just watching it!!!! HOPE IS ALIVE!!!! Get set on fire for outrageous dreams of hope and transformation in your own neighborhood, city, and nation!!!!!!! Cast aside statistics and gloomy outlooks, news reports and doubt, and run headlong into the wild and glorious possibility that every single NATION will be transformed into FLOURISHING by the goodness of our amazing Father!!!!! YEEHAW!!!!

http://revivalworks.com/scripts/prodView.asp?idproduct=26
“Top 10 Transformed Communities Worth Visiting”:  http://www.glowtorch.org/Home/TopTenTransformedCommunitiesWorthVisiting/tabid/2598/Default.aspx

One of my most treasured verses is Revelation 11:15

“‘The seventh angel sounded his trumpet, and there were loud voices in heaven, which said:

The kingdom of the world

has become the kingdom of our Lord and of his Christ,

and he will reign for ever and ever.'”

And where do we get the model for transformation? From heaven. From the kingdom of Heaven. Where is it? It’s inside us. “Once, having been asked by the Pharisees when the kingdom of God would come, Jesus replied, “The kingdom of God does not come with your careful observation, nor will people say, ‘Here it is,’ or ‘There it is,’ because THE KINGDOM OF GOD IS WITHIN YOU.”  (Luke 17:20-21)

If you want to know what your city would look like fully alive and flourishing, ask God. Ask Him to give you the blueprints for your city fully shining the Kingdom of God. He wants to show you. He wants to take you outside the box of the “normal” way of getting things done, and He wants to unfold heaven’s mysteries to you. He wants to lead you to the treasures in your city. He wants you to see your city through His eyes! Blessings as you open yourself to His strategies and His love for your city. Blessings of fiery vision, relentless passion, and a Hope that will never relent. Blessings of multiplication of help, finances, and connections. When I lived in Bethlehem, Israel my ministry partner and I asked God for a way to meet the mayor and the chief of police. Shortly thereafter we found ourselves at a wedding seated with the chief of police and then we received an email from a friend’s friend who wanted to introduce us to the deputy mayor!!!!! HAHA! God LOVES it when we dream big! Blessings of unity in your neighborhood. Blessings of creative ideas for loving your neighborhood to LIFE!!!!! Blessings of crazy compassion that leads to crazy boldness. Blessings of fearlessness driven by perfect love. HAHAHAHAHA!!!!!!!!

The kingdom of this world IS becoming

the Kingdom of our God!!!

The Kingdom of God is IN you, LET IT OUT!!!!!!