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Monday, June 22, 2020

The Word is Alive, Listen to Him


The Word is Jesus

The Word is not dry writings of yesteryear, to be followed by rote, our New Law, bound as slaves... Blindly following a prescription for life.

The Word is a person. A member of the Godhead. A living being. 

The Word is our bread.

The Word is our life.

If we have lack, it's because we ask not, or, if we ask, we ask with wrong selfish motives. The Word said that.

He wants us to ask, seek, knock, and then hear, listen, obey.

Sometimes His healing comes in the form of putting mud on your eyes and telling you to go wash it off. Sometimes His healing is from going to wash in a dirty river. Sometimes His healing is spoken, and you leave by faith to do as He said without any sign it is "working"...

He is interested in our submission, not our blind obedience to a written code. 

Today..... Spend time LISTENING not just reading. 

By all means, read your Bible. But more importantly, or at least as important, LISTEN. Hear what he would say to you today. 

Selah.











Wednesday, June 17, 2020

Man. Moon. Duck Suit. God's Ways.

The black oil of night crept over the sidewalk making it hard to see where he was going. Not that Manny could see much through the mask of his Big Yellow Ducks mascot outfit. The team left without him, taking his change of clothes with them. 

Manny stumbled down a dark alley, his guitar slung over his fake feathery yellow back. The street lights became puddles to reach one after another, accenting the voids between.

Finally, he reached a corner, he decided he'd had enough. He tried music and failed. He tried art and failed. And now he was reduced to wearing a mascot outfit for pennies just to make ends meet. The anger boiled inside until he couldn't take it anymore. He grabbed the guitar and smashed it over and over on the curb. Just as he was starting to break it, a white odd looking car passed by, splashing water onto him from the street. "Great, thanks!"

Cocking his big fake head, he looked up into the sky, and the Man in Moon, "Why give me a desire to be something but never let me be it?" Then he stumbled home, tossed his outfit to the bedroom floor and went to sleep.

A week later, he woke up on a Monday morning to 67 missed calls from his friend Conrad. "Dude, wake up! You're famous!"

There on his phone, was a picture of him dressed as a big yellow duck, smashing a guitar on the corner. Video from the corner store security footage, showing the events in time, had been circulating the internet and recieved over 2 Million Views. 

At the school, he was fired for his making the mascot of their proud institution look bad, but he didn't even care, totally worth it, he thought. As he was leaving, a call came in from an agent looking to represent him, claiming he had an interview with Good Morning America if he was interested.

***

Turning from the screen, "... And that kids, is how I got my start in movies, right there, on a street corner. So never give up. God has funny ways of bringing about your calling." 

As Manny packed up his gear, to end his presentation, the moonlight through the window showed the wrinkles on his hand growing darker and more defined. He'd had a really good run. 

"Thanks Man in the Moon, couldn't have done it without you."

Sunday, June 7, 2020

It's time to stop spending my energy in someone else's garden. It's time to invest in my own.

The Government is on HIS shoulders... 

I have decided that I am no longer interested in discussing government in public. 

It's not my arena. 

It's not what I'm called to. 

It's a distraction for me from my actual calling. 

I've never once, in nearly 40-years of living, ever changed anyone's mind about politics or government. Clifton Strengthsfinder 2.0 points out that one can be passionate about something they are bad at and waste their life's energy doing something unfruitful. Meanwhile, they could put a fraction of that energy into something they were gifted to do and recieve exponentially more positive results. 

God's called me and gifted me to do many things, politics is not one of them. I have seen God promote men I do not understand, several times. I've seen God's hand on men I don't like. I've seen it be CLEARLY God when I was dumfounded. So I am laying that down. I'll leave the government to God and the people he has called to that mountain. I may observe and comment in the form of writing Fiction, and see what those trends are like extrapolated, but, I will no longer occupy my time arguing with people on this subject.

My calling is to Writing, Music, Prophetic Teaching, and Healing of Hearts. My calling is to discuss Fatherhood, Manhood, Marriage, Intimacy and Sex. Those are my wheelhouse. Those are things I can make a marked difference talking about. Those are the areas in which I can be a gift to the world. So that's what I'll be doing with my time. 

Selah....

For a child will be born to us, a son will be given to us; And the government will rest on His shoulders; And His name will be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Eternal Father, Prince of Peace.

Note: *I am sure to struggle with this. I'm sure I'll post things I later retract or delete. But I'm declaring my intention.*


Friday, May 8, 2020

What happens after death, sleep or heaven?



Question: When you die, do you take a dirt nap until the end of times; or, do you go to heaven?

Answer

I didn't know this was still a question. It's not even a grey area, biblically. Heaven.

You go to heaven for now, but that is not our final destination. Ultimately we’ll all come back to earth at the end of times. But in the ages between prophetic events, we will go to heaven.

 

Background:

 

First interesting note, Jacob has a dream/vision of Angels Ascending and Descending from Heaven. Establishing early in Biblical interpretation that Heaven is an actual place that can be visited.

 

Paul, (speaking in the third person but referencing himself), visited heaven and saw visions. This visitation is what led him to pen the statement which becomes the key idea for this topic:

 

To be absent from the body, is to be present with the Lord.

 

When Jesus was on the cross, two men were with him on their crosses. One rejected Jesus, made fun of him. The other respected Jesus, and asked him to remember him when he came into his kingdom. In the most visceral act of “laying one’s life down for another”, in his own pain, Jesus told this man “you will be with me today in paradise”. This indicates that he will not be sleeping in the dirt.

 

Jesus, himself, told the story of a rich man and poor man. The story was not told in parable form, and may well have been a true account. Regardless, he portrays the scenario as being in line with truth about after life. Both men die, one is righteous and escorted by an angel to Abraham’s Bosom. The other, being a selfish prick, is escorted to Hades. This story shows us another example of men being VERY conscious after death on earth. It’s also an interesting example of the after-life pre-cross.

 

At that time, heaven was off limits. The Blood had not been shed. Jewish Tradition held that there were two sides of “Sheol”, hades and paradise. As the story shows, a chasm between the two was inseparable but there was still communication between them. Even discussion about why they can’t return to earth to win the lost.

 

We also see that during his earthly ministry, Jesus received a visit from Moses and Elijah, which is fascinated because one died and the other did not. This gives precedence for some, limited, interaction between Heaven, Sheol, and Earth, Dead and Living, as God wills only of course.

 

The bible says that when Jesus ascended from the grave, he took many captives with him. Given the numerous references to the saints in heaven (especially throughout the book of Revelations) we see that Jesus cleared the captives from Paradise and took them with him into Heaven when he was raised from the dead.

 

Also interesting to note, there are two men who never have (yet) died. Enoch and Elijah. Both men have not yet physically died. These two received a special calling and were taken into Heaven directly from earth, body and all. Many end-times scholars (myself included) believe that these two men will come back as the two witnesses spoken about in Revelations. Since it has been appointed to man once to die, I believe these (the only two men to never die) will come back as the two witnesses.

 

At the end of the Great Tribulation, after the Marriage Supper of the Lamb which was taking place in heaven during the tribulation on earth, Jesus comes back to Earth with the believers in tow behind (Rev 19). This is after the Rapture, in which the dead in Christ have been risen. So it doesn’t directly answer your question, but, it’s interesting and the next stage in events.

 

After these, Jesus reigns, physically, on the Earth for 1,000 years, with all humanity that survived plus all believers that ever lived. Satan is locked in prison during this time, but afterward released once more. He will prove once and for all that even in a perfect society with a perfect King, the hearts of men will rebel. With this final global lesson learned, he will wipe the slate clean and remake the Earth all over again. I don’t believe this means the planet will be destroyed. God is a God of Redemption. So he will clean up and make new a New Heaven and New Earth. They will then be reunited, and co-exist as one entity in one location. The actual physical city that is built in heaven right now, populated with those who have passed, right now, will descend from Heaven onto Earth, and God Himself, the Father, will dwell on Earth at this point. Until now, the Son reigned on Earth for 1,000 years. Now the Father himself will reside on Earth forever more.

 

 

* A few fun Heaven Scriptures here as well.

 

 

 

References:

 

2 Corinthians 12:2
I knew a man in Christ above fourteen years ago, (whether in the body, I cannot tell; or whether out of the body, I cannot tell: God knows;) such an one caught up to the third heaven.

 

2 Cor 5:8 New International Version
We are confident, I say, and would prefer to be away from the body and at home with the Lord.

 

Luke 23:43 New International Version
Jesus answered him, "Truly I tell you, today you will be with me in paradise."

 

Revelation 4:1 New International Version
After this I looked, and there before me was a door standing open in heaven. And the voice I had first heard speaking to me like a trumpet said, "Come up here, and I will show you what must take place after this."

 

Genesis 5 - God Takes Up Enoch (See Also Hebrews 11:5)

18When Jared was 162 years old, he became the father of Enoch. 19And after he had become the father of Enoch, Jared lived 800 years and had other sons and daughters. 20So Jared lived a total of 962 years, and then he died.

21When Enoch was 65 years old, he became the father of Methuselah. 22And after he had become the father of Methuselah, Enoch walked with Godc 300 years and had other sons and daughters. 23So Enoch lived a total of 365 years.

24Enoch walked with God, and then he was no more, because God had taken him away.d

 

2 Kings 2

11As they were walking along and talking together, suddenly a chariot of fire with horses of fire appeared and separated the two of them, and Elijah went up into heaven in a whirlwind.

12As Elisha watched, he cried out, “My father, my father, the chariots and horsemen of Israel!” And he saw Elijah no more. So taking hold of his own clothes, he tore them in two.

13Elisha also picked up the cloak that had fallen from Elijah, and he went back and stood on the bank of the Jordan. 14Then he took the cloak of Elijah that had fallen from him and struck the waters. “Where now is the LORD, the God of Elijah?” he asked.

And when he had struck the waters, they parted to the right and to the left, and Elisha crossed over.

 

Luke 16 The Rich Man and Lazarus ( See Also John 5:39-47) (Other translations say “Abrahams’ Bossom”).

22One day the beggar died and was carried by the angels to Abraham’s side.d And the rich man also died and was buried. 23In Hades, where he was in torment, he looked up and saw Abraham from afar, with Lazarus by his side.

 

2859 [e] kolpon κόλπον bosom

2859 kólpos – properly, the upper part of the chest where a garment naturally folded to form a "pocket" – called the "bosom," the position synonymous with intimacy (union).

 

Ephesians 4:8 New International Version
This is why it says: "When he ascended on high, he took many captives and gave gifts to his people."

 

Revelation 6

9Now when the Lamb opened the fifth seal, I saw under the altar the souls of those who had been violently killed because of the word of God and because of the testimony they had given. 10They cried out with a loud voice, “How long, Sovereign Master, holy and true, before you judge those who live on the earth and avenge our blood?”

 

Hebrews 9:27 New International Version
Just as people are destined to die once, and after that to face judgment,

 


Monday, April 27, 2020

Short Story: The Terrorist

Short Story: The Terrorist

The air in the locker room was foul, heavy, like a weighted blanket on Mal’s chest that he couldn’t take off. The sun went down a few hours ago, the threat response team decided to wait until dark to take the terrorist cell.

“Mal,” the team-leader called out as he left the locker room. “Five minutes.” The door closed behind him, leaving Mal alone.

Malchus Falcon laced his tactical boots, pulled on his protective vest, and holstered his side arm. The Incident Response team was headed out with FBI to arrest a domestic terrorist, going by the moniker “Ye’Hoshua Ha’mashiach”, a radical mid-eastern religious fanatic who claimed to be bringing about an end to the UNAE. The briefing was unclear as to the exact nature of the threat; only that his cell was responsible for existential threats to the United North American Empire (UNAE).

The ride to the cell’s secret meeting place was uneventful, protestors had been squelched with the latest curfews, violators shot on sight without warning. Mal scrolled his news feed. The entire country had been talking about this new terrorist cell. Most cult-cells only took the attention of fringe elements of the society, but this leader captured the attention of the entire population. He was the number one trending topic on SocialStream, the UNAE’s Officially sanctioned and censored social sharing platform.

A long hallway snaked around the a hidden corner, the strike team followed Hudahye, a former leader from this cell who defected and reported the meeting location to the UNAE. The abandoned Olive Garden Restaurant, one of many buildings left as a holdover from old Capitalism, was being used as a meeting place.

Glass from the door’s otherwise aluminum frame shattered with one touch from the battering ram, which Mal noted was entirely unnecessary since the door had been unlocked. Everything was always an over-show of force with the UNAE. The smell of stale Olive Oil still permeated the walls, there were tag marks and broken glass but it had been swept aside into a pile. Someone had been cleaning up the place.

Clearing the side rooms and hallways, they used cameras to peak around into the main room, it was lit softly by a few large candles, which were contraband due to fire-risks. Another offense to add to his list.

A touch on his shoulder signaled Mal to step aside, making room for Hudahye to step forward and into the room, he kissed Ya’Hoshua on both cheeks, then bowed his head.

“Really?,” YaHoshua said. “A kiss, Hudahya?” The leaders eyes were sad, disappointed.

The former comrade averted his eyes in shame, and walked back a step. That was the cue, the strike team flooded the room, covering Hudaya’s hasty exit from the facility.

“UNAE! Hands where we can see them,” the team-leader demanded.

The rest of the response team flanked the team-leader and his henchmen, cutting off the exits. Mal, second in command, was nearest the middle, face to face with Yeshua and his right-hand disruptor, Kefa. Ye’Hoshua’s eyes were disarming. He smiled gently, hands causally in front of him, palms up. His associates wore a range of expressions from angry to terrified.

Agitation filled the room, but nobody said anything. The strike team had been expecting a shootout, so when the band of misfits made no moves, the team hesitated.

“Who are you here for?” Ye’Hoshua asked, breaking the thick silence.

The team leader demanded, “Ya’Hoshua Ha’mashiach, leader of the Natzerets.”

“I am he,” Ye’Hoshua said. And a wave of dizziness hit Mal, his eyes felt heavy like the nighttime end of a long road trip, on the last miles to home, and his vision went dark. A moment later, he found himself on the ground, head laying on his team leader’s leg. He shook blinked, breathed deeply, felt his brain rebooting. Looking around, his entire squad was laid out on the floor. The terrorists team remained standing, but docile, behind him.

The strike team took a moment to recover, but they stood, though less menacingly than before.

“Who are you here for?” Ye’Hoshua asked again, more firmly.

The team leader spoke again, though less firmly than Mal expected. “Ya’Hoshua Ha’mashiach, leader of the Natzerets.”

“I am,” He answered. “Since you have me, you will let my people go.” There was a fire in the terrorists eye’s that gave Mal a chill.

The team leader nodded affirmation. Mal walked slowly toward him, pulling out the handcuffs.

“NO!” Mal heard, and he caught a glimpse of Kefa coming at him with a large Bowie Knife. Reflexifly, Mal raised his hands in defense, but Kefa caught him off guard, and the knife glanced off his gloved hand and a searing heat spread across face on the right side.

A loud ringing pierced his right side, and he put his hands to his ears. When he pulled his hand away from his face, it was covered in blood. His right ear laying in his hand, he grew dizzy, nauseous, and fell to one knee.

“Kefa!” He heard from his good ear, “Put that away, now!”

Ye’Hoshua stepped forward, and kneeled, placing his hand under Mal’s hand. Mal felt strength return. The terrorist grabbed the ear gently from his hand, and placed it back on his head. A wave of warmth, like a bubble bath after a long day, washed over him. The ringing stopped.

One of the crew gasped, “It’s back on…” his voice trailed off.

Ye’Hoshua helped Mal stand, then turned to Kefa. “This is my cup, and I will drink it.” Kefa nodded, and stepped back, eyes terrified.

Taking the handcuffs from the ground, Ye’Hoshua placed them on himself, and held out his newly cuffed hands to Mal to lead him away.

The team quietly marched out of the room. Glancing over his shoulders, he noticed the remaining Natzerets running out the back door through an emergency exit. Nobody made a move to follow them.

The arrest was, nearly, injury free…

Mal sat in his room at the boarding house above the strike team locker rooms, disinterested in his news feed. Pondering… What had they done? The man in the holding cell downstairs, being interrogated… who was he really? Had the UNAE lied, as usual, about the nature of this man’s threat? Surely, a man like this was a threat to the UNAE… but Mal wondered it that was a bad thing…

***The End....?***

Reference:

The Pharisees and the leading priests had given Judas a large detachment of Roman soldiers and temple police to seize Jesus. Judas guided them to the garden, all of them carrying torches and lanterns and armed with swords and spears . Jesus, knowing full well what was about to happen, went out to the garden entrance to meet them. Stepping forward, he asked, “Who are you looking for?” “Jesus of Nazareth,” they replied. (Now Judas, the traitor, was among them.) He replied, “I am he.” And the moment Jesus spoke the words, “I am he,” the mob fell backward to the ground! So once more, Jesus asked them, “Who are you looking for?” As they stood up, they answered, “Jesus of Nazareth.” Jesus replied, “I told you that I am the one you’re looking for, so if you want me, let these men go home.”


Yeshua, who knew everything that was going to happen to him, went out and asked them, “Whom do you want?” “Yeshua from Natzeret,” they answered. He said to them, “I AM.” Also standing with them was Y’hudah, the one who was betraying him. When he said, “I AM,” they went backward from him and fell to the ground. So he inquired of them once more, “Whom do you want?” and they said, “Yeshua from Natzeret.”




Monday, April 20, 2020

Short Story: The memory is the last to go...

Short Story: The memory is the last to go... 

***

The morning fog crisped Ahs’s nose as it mixed with the eerie mists emanating from the mingling crowds. The scent of the river always felt clean but mysterious this time of year. As though it promised to one day reveal its secrets, held in one of the many 1940’s cars at the bottom before people learned to stop driving over thin ice. 

He walked the edges of town, avoiding the largest concentration of people, barely aware of the purple clouds wafting from a couple sneaking a groping session behind the tree, mixing with the purple and green fog flowing from Eddie, the bank manager sitting across the street, doing his best not to appear to be watching them. The colors of every hue wafting from the people mixing mostly into ghastly greys in the waning fall crowds. 

He did his best to ignore the mists after years of it. The only way to keep his sanity intact. Eyes down, straight ahead. But you had to look up, look both ways, to cross the street. His eyes were drawn to a particularly dark charcoal grey puff, he knew before he finished his glance that it would be Hank. 

Sure enough, covered in dirt and three layers of Goodwill, there was Hank, fighting with a knot in his bicycle basket.

Approaching cautiously, you never knew what mood Hank would be in, “Hey there Soldier, can I lend a hand?”

“Hmpf,” Hank let out a more defeated than usual grunt. “Why not, I’ve been trying to get this damned knot untied for three hours.” 

An exaggeration, it had probably been three minutes. But that was Hank, he also ‘single-handedly’ defeated an entire Vietnam platoon with nothing but a make-shift shank carved from the remains of a Tonkin Snub-nosed Monkey.

Ash silently took the knot from Hank, pulled out his pocket knife-

“Stop-” Hank retorted. “That’s my best rope!”

“Don’t worry old man,” Ash said. “I’m not going to cut it, just prying it loose.”

Hank eyed him warily. 

“There,” Ash said, a few moments later. “It’s all loose for you.” He put his pocket knife in the Kevlar holster. 

Hank inspected the rope. “No frays,” he mumbled. “Thanks.”  With that, he promptly ignored Ash, as usual, and went back to whatever imperative task his three hundred plastic bags in the buggy behind his bike required. 

Ash left him to his project. Hank reminded him of his father. If he couldn’t save Dad, or himself for that matter, the least he could do would be to show some kindness to one of their own kind. 

“How long,” Ash let out audibly. As he walked the docks to his boat, images of himself running around the countryside with only half an awareness of his insanity raced through his mind. Like father like son. He shrugged, climbing aboard. The fog was heavier here but the mists of the crowds stayed behind with them. 

Letting loose the tie-downs, he then started the engines and set off up-river for home, ripples disappearing into the fog… much like his memory, he feared.

***


A short story, by Darrell Wolfe, Storyteller


 

Shalom: Live Long and Prosper!
Darrell Wolfe (DG Wolfe)
Storyteller | Writer | Thinker | Consultant @ DarrellWolfe.com

Clifton StrengthsFinder: Intellection, Learner, Ideation, Achiever, Input
16Personalities (Myers-Briggs Type): INFJ


Sunday, April 19, 2020

Every life needs a mission. But not every mission needs to be lifelong.

One of the most freeing things I'm learning today.... stop looking for calling and start looking for purpose.

I don't have to know my "calling" for life. 

I don't need to know what I've been put on Earth to do, the ultimate fulfillment of my existence, my one true calling... At nearly 40, that may be a bunch of rubbish anyway.

I only need to know:

1. My personality parameters. Those things within my wheelhouse that I can say yes to, and those things outside my wheelhouse I should say no to, also called boundaries.

2. My Projects: what tasks, projects, or goals, or next indicated steps are directly in front of me. That's all I'm responsible for, today's daily bread.

Every life needs a mission. But not every mission needs to be lifelong.

A life-mission could be to complete this project, clean that room, finish that scrap book, read x books by x date, etc. 

It is sufficient to be a purposeful mission if it has purpose for me and lays within the confines of my boundaries.

I'm increasing my creative writing, which means I may make fewer of these observation posts and more creative storytelling posts... We shall see. 

What does this look like today?

I'm taking time to get back into creative writing craft. I'm listening to podcasts, reading writing craft books, and signed up for MasterClasses on writing.

I'm transferring all my research and previous writings to Scrivener.

I'm going to spend the next X months (maybe until August 1 unless done earlier) going through the Outlining process I didn't do the first two times I tried to write this novel.

Then I'll write. 

Atomic Habits taught me to set a schedule for the task not a deadline for the project. For example, instead of saying I'll publish the book by January, I'll say I'm the type of person who writes, so, I'll write every day or every week according to such and such a calendar. That's still up in the air with COVID-19, but I'm pondering what that will look like without overshadowing my responsibility to raise boys to men, clean and care for a home, clean and care for my body, and be involved in my community.

One of the final straws that clicked.... 

My very last conversation with Flavia, literally the night before she died, was that she should stop wasting her time on "craft" projects trying to make money, and instead, pour herself into her life's work, the very thing that was life giving for her, which was her fine arts and artistic expressions. 

It's taken almost two years to realize that conversation was for me, since she didn't live for even 12-hours afterward. 

I will stop trying to do things that make sense logically, forcing myself into a box that doesn't fit, and start doing things that matter. Money or no money. 

What about you? 

What are you going to commit to that will feed your life? What shirt term manageable goals could you work toward that will feed who you are?

#Selah #NoHiding 


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