Fresh Air Blog

Ego, Identity, Humility

Ego, Identity, Humility

Ego. Identity. Humility. Three small words that potentially spark big thought. The world embraces ego. Even gives it special meaning by sticking the word “male” in front of it, making it a thing. Ego is to be no more an excuse than a pursuit. If you want more confidence, pursue identity. When you know who you are and whose you are, you are more grounded, stable, and secure. Identity takes care of pride and its cronies. To grow in identity is to know you are uber-loved as God’s child. Such knowledge swallows up a myriad of uglies and helps shrivel up that “old man” fleshly nature. Vices like comparison and jealousy can’t possibly thrive in the face of someone who truly knows who she is and what she carries. The same Spirit that raised Christ from the dead lives in you! Don’t be surprised when you experience friction from those who don’t yet “get” God’s identity and the sense of confident humility it brings.  No need to knock others down to size, nor put them in their place. Lack of understanding provides an opportunity to show patience and love. We are all in process, needing to give and receive grace for the journey. If someone close to you has identity issues, love them before the Father’s throne and see what he tells you. If you have the kind of close relationship with them that’s earned their ears, see if they’re open to you coaching them along with gentle reminders of who they are in Christ as you model these virtues yourself. Papa God, thank you for your steadfast patience. Thank you for Love inside doing its ongoing steady work. Thank you, Holy Spirit, for a new day every day as we grow in knowledge and depth of insight, grasping from glory to glory a clearer picture of who we are in you and you in...

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Unity

Unity

Unity is as important to God as ever, but often a downer when we stare at the church’s apparent lack of it. Even the word “unity” strikes a barrage of thoughts and questions. What does it mean? What does God want? After all, He made us all different, right? Let’s cut to the chase. He wants us all to seek His face. The more we spend time with Him, the more we become like Him. The more we become like Him, the more we become unified in our hearts. Dwight and I have matching wedding rings to signify this. The diamond at the top represents God. Each of us in two diamonds below makes a triangle when connected with the ruby between us, the blood of Jesus that holds us together. The closer we draw to God, the closer we are to each other in the triangle, and the closer we are to Christ. Our hunger for God will determine our maturity in God. Growing up is optional. We don’t have to do it. Eating spiritual meat that leads to maturity is optional, too. But the more we do, pursuing God collectively, the more we’ll be unified as His church. Thing is, maturity brings us to a place of unity rooted in love. And love is what holds us together in the bond of peace. As we move collectively on our separate growth journeys, God’s paths to perfection, let’s be unified in the bond of love that holds us together in perfect peace. Papa God, thank you for your Bride, the church. May we bless her and not curse her. May we daily pray for her maturity and unity, starting with our own. Until that great day when we see you face-to-face, our dear lover and Bridegroom Eternal, may we love You and all the rest of us, your church, wholly, exactly, beautifully the way you called us to. Wholeheartedly love her, daily fanning the flames of love. Becoming a warm inviting fire to a waiting watching ever-hungry, ever-filling world....

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Seeing and Hearing

Seeing and Hearing

Hey everybody. I’m back!! I’ve decided not to let the spasms in my back, neck, arms, and shoulders keep me from talking to you here anymore.  Sound good? Yeah, I’ll take it slow; but the blogosphere is calling me. Plus God and I had a little talk this morning, and I trust Him to lead the way. Sometimes obstacles look like giants obstructing our vision. But God says, “I am the way.” Next to the One who is inside us, what really is a giant anyway? God has been challenging me to keep my Jesus-lenses on. This is where we follow His lead, rather than leaning on our own understanding.  Lord, give us eyes to see. God’s perspective is supernatural; and so should ours be.  He tells us to ask Him to show us mysteries. When is the last time we did that? With seeing comes hearing. In a world bursting with static noise galore, more than ever we need to be intentional in what we hear. His voice should always be our number one voice of choice. Who knows? To be intentional may mean reaching for His Word before our i-phones when we wake up. Earthly reports can wreak havoc on weak hearts, but God’s ready and patient voice is always tried and true to “peace” us back together again. Mind if I pray for you? Papa God, thank you for daily speaking to your children and giving us perspective. Thank you for lifting us to the heights where we can rest in your bigness and grace....

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Missing Peace?

Missing Peace?

This morning while reading an email from a friend, the Lord distinctly dropped these words into my heart. I believe they’re also for you. “When I say ‘do not be anxious about anything,’ I mean anything. You need to cast aside regret about things you wish you had done differently. To regret something in the past is to be anxious about it. Instead, you need to commit those unnecessary burdens to Me so I can take care of them. As you pray and petition Me with thanksgiving, fully entrusting your burdens and requests to Me, I will establish peace in the depths of your inner being where My Kingdom dwells, grows, and thrives with My resurrection life inside...

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5 Heart-Softening Words

5 Heart-Softening Words

Little Josiah, from my recent book, Josiah’s Fire: Autism Stole His Words, God Gave Him a Voice, inspires thousands with his great wisdom. I especially love one of the things Josiah shared with his mom, my coauthor, Tahni: “If you love the child you have, you’ll have the child you love.” The more I considered it, the more I realized this same truth truth could also apply to marriage. If you love the spouse you have, you’ll have the spouse you love. Dwight and I recently had an opportunity to give marriage counseling to a guy on the phone who was at the end of his rope. It still amazes me that God would lead us to help others at a time when we were enduring the most difficult test of our married life. In September I was diagnosed with spasmodic torticollis (cervical dystonia), which is why you haven’t heard from me in awhile. Well, that and the fact I was finishing Josiah’s Fire and a devotional called The Good Gift Giver (which will be offered across the globe when Tahni speaks on Sid Roth’s March broadcast of It’s Supernatural.) Dwight and I talked with the hurting man late into the night. After we talked about how years ago God brought resurrection life into our own suffocating marriage, we told him a story we heard somewhere along the way: Matt thought his marriage was over until someone presented him with a simple idea that might help. “Every day I want you to ask Tina, ‘how can I serve you?’” Feeling like he had nothing to lose, Matt decided to give it a try. When he asked his wife the question, it took a minute for her to get over the shock. Finally she piped up, “Ok… how about doing the laundry?” He did it without complaint, and the next morning when he asked his still-surprised wife the same question, she answered, “how about clean the garage?” It took him two hours but he did it. This went on for several days with him asking, her answering, and him lovingly stepping up to the plate in a way he’d never done in the past. Finally she couldn’t take it anymore; and the next time Matt asked his new favorite question, she shook her head. “No, no, it’s my turn. How can I serve you?” Change had already begun. What had started as words on his lips...

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