Pioneering

Psalms 9:2

I will be glad and rejoice in you. I will sing praise to your name, Oh Most High God!

“Walk in the Spirit and you will not obey the lusts of the flesh.”

Are you a vessel thirsting for life giving water? Consecrated vessel, thirsty and yielded? Listening to the voice of our Shepherd, lingering and learning? If you are this word will speak to you.

Pioneer is a word that isn’t found in scripture, in some places Christians are called pilgrims, but the concept of pioneering is taught in the example of disciples who go in to virgin territory and start churches, or movements, that lay kingdom foundations. New day disciples. Pioneering is an assignment, Jesus has chosen us to go forth, bearing fruit. We’ve made our calling and election sure. therefore we’re anointed and appointed. We’re hunters and fishers of lost souls and wandering sheep. As children of God we’re laborers set to work in his harvest fields.

Quickly we discover that once we’ve set out on that bold journey there are many challenges and we’re in need of stretching, and enlarging as we learn by experience. It’s a daily adventure of learning, changing and overcoming. Times of deep leaning on the Lord and getting established with confidence in our God and in our assignment.

Our perspectives are being renewed. Things that were once hidden from us because we’ve been too young to bear the deeper truths are now becoming more visible. We’re growing up. We’re being set to learn new things. We’ve put our hand to the plow and we can never draw back. So if we want to stay alive and grow we need continual renewing of old mindsets, or we will get stuck in stagnation. The wise continue to make wise choices to say yes to his invitations to go deeper. To keep our lamps trimmed and a ready supply of fresh oil.

We need purity and wisdom to watch and pray at our posts and to guard the gates from enemy access. We need deep wisdom to know how to discern the good from the evil. For all is not as it appears.

Jesus said that he would make us fishers of men. That’s right up my alley cause I’ve always been a lover of fishing. I’ve learned too that fishing his way isn’t like my experience so I’m deep into learning. My ways won’t work in his kingdom plan.

But I did have a concept of the plan. You need the right weather, good and well maintained equipment and the right bait. And some days you do real good and bring in a good haul but other days you come up way short. And both of these kinds of days requires hard work, patience and tenacity. You can’t get discouraged and give up too soon but you have to learn how to know when it’s time to rest and get prepared for the next trip.

Jesus knows what fishermen need and as we grow in him he begins to develop that nature in us. We become partakers of his nature. God captures us and then invites us to go hunting and fishing with him. And we find that we’re on a journey of searching in weird and really uncomfortable places for unknown riches. Lost souls. We’re not gold diggers but we are treasure hunters. From the word we learn that he often takes us into wild and uncultivated places. There are sharp rocks to navigate around safely and steep hills that have to be climbed. Pioneering is for explorers but it’s for sure that this kind of pioneering isn’t for the novice. And it’s not a way of life where old bossy self has any say-so. Nor is it an adventure for those who need to hold on to creature comforts. It’s a place of deepening joy but there are surely snares and traps set for our harm. These places are harvest fields, but know that the fields are mined by the enemy. The only safe way to navigate is by total surrender.

You know how it is in warfare in the natural, when scouts have to go out ahead of the troops to search out the hidden dangers? Like scouts, God appointed fearless forerunners are sent ahead. These are more experienced soldiers who have both a single eye and an eagle eye. That’s why we’re all continually reminded to be alert and watchful. Strong and courageous.

The pioneer walks a walk that might be called lonely, but the intention of God is to raise up sons and daughters who dwell deep. They are lovers of the righteous but they are content being alone in solitude with God. Pioneers walk in a God assigned lane many would not travel on. Places where carnal mindsets create war lords who rule by fear and intimation. No divine light.

Pioneers seek the way of the Prince of Peace. They’re thrust out into the middle of other people’s messes and if hearts are open to the ways of heaven love and peace can bring change. These dark strongholds have to be pulled down by Holy Spirit instruction. But know that the enemy fights fiercely to keep God soldiers away from these strongholds. Know also, and above all, that the fight is fixed; Jesus has already defeated the enemy. And God is now training us with boldness to go into enemy camps to seek souls. He is delighted when He finds some who love his grace baits and He captures hearts.

We also might be surprised to find out that there are times in which the lives of our close family members are the place where these skills are needed. Bloodline challenges. This is one of the main places the enemy will try to spoil our testimony. Remember that a man must deal wisely in the affairs of his own house before he will be given authority in God’s house. And with no God given authority we are powerless against evil. So submission to learning the Lord’s ways is mandated. Agreeing with His skills at cleaning up my own heart and relationships has been a large part of my story personally. The salvation of two key family members began a lifetime work of restoration and recovery for many others that will effect future generations. And that might be true of you too.

Consider the big picture….

Isa 58:12

And they that shall be of thee shall build the old waste places: thou shalt raise up the foundations of many generations; and thou shalt be called, The repairer of the breach, The restorer of paths to dwell in.

Father, Your word is pure and you always cause triumph in Christ Jesus. Help us as we seek your face to yield as you bring us into that right position to receive. Thank you for your ever present help in getting our ways right in your sight!

Word given by God in 2018. Republished in Jan 2021

Great Meals Need Salt

Jesus people are salt and light. Let’s look into that together.

God has set my attention on this.  The other day I was eating a tomato and I took a bite. I hadn’t salted it yet but after I did that I thought “It’s really amazing the difference in the taste of this after I added salt ‘  That got me to thinking deep.

So, what is spiritual salt? How do we live in the truth of being salt and light? We need to know because Jesus told us that he wants us to feed his sheep. And he wants them fed with the finest of the wheat. The Father watches over his children for their good.

Psalms 103:5
Who satisfies thy mouth with good things; so that thy youth is renewed like the eagle’s.

What we bring to the table is our offering to God for his flock. It’s for us to learn how to make it more tasty. God’s word says that the ear tries words like the mouth tries meat. Job 12:11. So, our words need to be tasty or they might be spit out. And they sure better be truth  in love for the purposes of redemption or God might spit us out. But knowing too that God is merciful, if we’re careful to cultivate ears that love instruction and correction that will never happen.

Have you ever written blogs that just seem to fall flat? I have. I knew God had shown me some great things and I felt led to share but I wasn’t seeing the fruitful results I wanted to see. I wanted to serve up rich blessing but I couldn’t find the key.  Then after awhile God began teaching me more. I’m still a learner but I have begun to see some valuable lessons to grow through.

Paul said  “Have salt in yourselves”

And he said that we should season things with grace. So that seems to say that grace is a seasoning, like salt.  It makes things more pleasant to feast on.  The two go together. They add value. 

So, we learn more and gently, we’re drawn deeper.  In him we can find the gritty grace we need. Sacrifices become deeper and more delightful.

Think on this.  The words we share are a lot like the meals we cook.  When a cook prepares a meal she goes to lots of trouble. It’s a hot job and it requires dedication. But at times when we sit down to eat we discover that we left out a vital seasoning. It’s missing something valuable. It’s flat, and it needs redoing. We have to fight discouragement and dig in and learn how to do better. So we take time to consider how we missed it.

It’s like that with a lot of our posts. We have lots of truthful information, but it’s flat, it has no heart power. It’s from the surface of the mind.  The seasoning salt that makes it more appealing is missing. It’s because God hasn’t breathed on it. It lacks life, it’s not effective.

If we ask for help then we can grow. It’s still got too much of ‘me’ in it, and it’s visible that ‘me” needs more of He. We’re not quite ready.  Truth always tells us that we’re loved but love has a responsibility. We do need to get better acquainted with the author  of truth. Ears need to be finetuned so we hear deeper.

Full gospel truth is salted, well seasoned food; it’s full of God love and wisdom to walk right.  Impartations of redeeming wisdom make us wiser.  We sit under authority and we respect it.  The offerings of more mature saints have been seasoned  through many  long suffering life experiences in practical ministry, and grace has been gained by experience.  Through mercy and grace the word becomes flesh and dwells among men again, as it did in Jesus. And as Paul told some, because we respect the anointing we partake of their grace. Hearts change and we become better cooks.

You know the old saying “Been there, done that”?  In reality that’s true on many levels.  The shepherds had to live it out.  Godly experience is priceless, it bears witness to the reality of the word of God and the resurrection life of Jesus. Maturity models it, because they’re dressed up in the son and seasoned with salt. It’s tasty, good and healthy meals that nourish the sheep.  The meals of the mature are filled with hope that becomes salty and valuable. Easy to digest. We’ve feasted on words that go beyond theory and religious form and we begin a growth process.  We get past our fear of mistakes and our insecurities, and we get hungry for more. We begin to hunger to live the life and go beyond just conversations about it. We want to walk our talk. We’ve tasted and seen that the Lord is good and we grow in saltiness.

I think that has a lot to do with why God is always telling us to “Be still, and know that I am God.”  We need to sit at his feet and learn to fully mature. We’re in His process and we will only find the excellence that his work deserves if we get into his order and his time, in the flow of his river of love and grace.  It’s only in his rest  that we increase.  Soaking in his love while gaining life changing experience will build up our faith muscles.  Our worship in spirit and in truth will carry us into deep devotions and lift us up into more abundant places.  And he will fill our bellies with life giving living water. And wisdom to apply it to the lives of others for their good.

Let’s resolve to seek in the deeps for the graces seasoned with saltiness that produces a wealth of wisdom.

Philippians 4:11
I have learned to be content in whatever situation I am in.

Maturing, delighting in his loving instruction.  Then we can prove our love for Jesus by what we feed his sheep.

Col 3:16

Let the word of Christ dwell in you in all wealth of wisdom; teaching and helping one another with songs of praise and holy words, making melody to God with grace in your hearts.