Category Archives: Witness

IAM Given a Gift

EPH 2:8-10 NLT God saved you by his grace when you believed. And you can’t take credit for this; it is a gift from God. Salvation is not a reward for the good things we have done, so none of us can boast about it. For we are God’s masterpiece. He has created us anew in Christ Jesus, so we can do the good things he planned for us long ago.

Friends, the wonderful gift of salvation and life is the greatest gift that we could ever receive.  It’s there waiting for all of us.  We are the recipients of the gift.  The greatness is in the gift and the gift giver.  We did not deserve it or earn it, but God graciously gives it to us.  Today, I want to encourage you to keep a proper perspective.  Not to lower ourselves and consider ourselves worthless.  Because God loves us so much, and that fact of being loved by God makes our idenity powerful.  There is no boasting in being given a gift by the skin of our teeth.  I hope there is a feeling of gratitude and thankfulness for the amazing grace we have received.

God saw something and planned something amazing for your life, long long ago.  That the amazing story of redemption is being written now as we speak.  That amazing story is resulting in a masterpiece that God is forming everyday.  The masterpiece that God is making out of your life is not meant to be sitting on the wall of a museum behind security glass.  God had a plan for you to do good things with that masterpiece.

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Let’s put down God’s Plan
1. He gave us the gift salvation because He loved us.
2. That gift of salvation working in us makes us an amazing masterpiece
3. The story and power of redemption of your life transformation into a masterpiece is a good good work for others to see.  For you to testify with your life, the amazing grace God offers to all man.

That’s the generic version:  allow God to form you, and mold you into the masterpiece he sees for your life.
Be a living testimony that God’s amazing grace is a gift that everyone is worthy to receive.
Encourage others to grow in their self worth because of the value of the gift and gift giver
Let God give you his heart for a specific purpose, passion or calling.
Keep on being awesome because our God is awesome!

 IAM Saved by Grace

IAM worthy because of the gift that I was given
IAM a Masterpiece
IAM a New Creation in Christ Jesus
IAM to do Good works according to God’s Plan

I can’t find a youtube video of this song, but it’s powerful
Listening to You Opened Up My Eyes by Martyn Layzell #nowplaying http://grooveshark.com/s/You+Opened+Up+My+Eyes/4zDpia?src=5

Let’s celebrate the fact that we we were once dead, but now we’re alive!

Martyn Layzell : You Opened Up My Eyes

Not by words and not by deeds. But by grace we have been saved
And it is the gift of God, the faith we need
Not by strength and not by might. But with power from on high
So that we can only boast, boast in You

For once I was dead, now I’m alive. For freedom I’m set free
And in Your great love, life do I find. You opened up my eyes
Not with eloquence or fame. But with weakness and in shame
For the power of Your strength. Is then revealed
And the message of Your cross. Seemed such foolishness to some
But the mercy of Your grace is hidden there

What mercy, what mercy, what mercy beneath Your cross
Your mercy, Your mercy, Your mercy beneath Your cross

IAM on FIRE!

Jeremiah 20:9  But if I say I’ll never mention the LORD or speak in his name, his word burns in my heart like a fire. It’s like a fire in my bones! I am worn out trying to hold it in! I can’t do it!

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When i was 22 years old, I received this verse as my life calling. I have a message that I believe must be shared as skillfully as possible.  That is my life calling.  It burns in my heart like a fire.
I have spent way too many years running from my calling, and I am weary from holding it in.  I can’t do it anymore!
 
God wore me out. I kept making free will decisions to run away from who I am, and what I was created to do. I am so thankful that He would not let me run away too far.  My decisions to run away also led to some consequences that were not so pleasant.  God used them to bring me back to him. I am so thankful that he would not let me go.  He wants you!
 
It’s a scary prayer to ask God: “I want to go deeper”  or “God, give me your heart”  the middle will be messy.  I want to encourage you, of the glorious end point!  The peace and joy of knowing you are living out your true mission on this earth! That’s a man on fire! Fire burns away the junk and things that do not matter, and it purifies and strengthens the eternal.  
Don’t be afraid of the fire, because what remains is what truly matters.  Don’t be afraid of the bold prayers for more!
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That is who I am.  My identity is not in what I do, it is in the message.  
My identity is not in my success or bank account, it is in my Lord
My identity is not in my wife or kids, it is only in the words that burn in my heart
My identity is not in what anyone else on this world thinks or says about me, it is only in the good news that must go forth. 

IAM Supremely Confident in My Identity

Mark 14:61-62 NLT But Jesus was silent and made no reply. Then the high priest asked him, “Are you the Messiah, the Son of the Blessed One?” Jesus said, “ i am . And you will see the Son of Man seated in the place of power at God’s right hand and coming on the clouds of heaven. ”

Jesus knew who he was.  He spoke plainly and boldly.

And he knew where he was going, he knew his destiny, and he speaks with confidence about that truth!

If you take a look at the whole chapter and previous chapters in the gospel,  Jesus is finally betrayed and he stands before his accusers. Yes, that’s me, you got it!

But not wrongfully accused, but asked to give testimony about who he is.

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Are you one of them Christians?

Yes, IAM, and I want to share the Love of Jesus with you!

Are you someone who can help me, because my family member is dying of cancer?

Yes, IAM, and I will pray for you and your family in the power of the Holy Spirit

Are you someone who can provide wisdom and insight into this horrible situation?

Yes, IAM, and I will speak the truth of God’s love and ways.

And everyday! Someone is crying out!  Who can bring sense or reason to this crazy crazy world we live in?  I need help!  I need someone to talk to!  I need someone to pray for a miracle!

With no hesitation, just instinct?  When our second nature, and first nature, become one powerful being moving in power, then we are confident!  Yes, IAM.

When I hear and read people’s prayer requests, I love the ones that say “I want to know God more!” Or “I want to go deeper”  or the really bold one “I want true faith” I boldy ask that God answers these prayers and He gives you a bold bold measure of strength, because these are prayers that will disrupt your middle class 3 bedroom 1.5 bath existence!

The middle will be messy, but the finished person will be Glorious!  And you will stand among the witnesses and warriors who know very clearly what they are, who they are, and what it is they are called to accomplish in this life.
God is refining you, purifying you, and transforming you!

Everyday, I hope to encourage you with another shade and aspect of God’s identity.

It’s my prayer that you will have the opportunity to boldly testify the truth in words and action

IAM Called by God

IAM a Witness
IAM a Messenger
IAM a Friend
IAM a Good Listener
IAM Confident in My Identity

IAM Resolute

Hebrews 12:1-2 NLT Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a huge crowd of witnesses to the life of faith, let us strip off every weight that slows us down, especially the sin that so easily trips us up. And let us run with endurance the race God has set before us. We do this by keeping our eyes on Jesus, the champion who initiates and perfects our faith. Because of the joy awaiting him, he endured the cross, disregarding its shame. Now he is seated in the place of honor beside God’s throne.

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The definition of: Resolute: admirably purposeful, determined, and unwavering
Whether we are in a sprint or in a long distance run… any extra weight is not good.  Extra mental burdens that cloud our thinking or totally preoccupy our brain time.

And even if our setup is perfect, and we are ready, one loose shoelace could easy knock us to the ground.  Let’s do a prerace checkup and make sure we don’t have any loose ends that could potentially trip us up

The word calls this life a race and that imagery is good.  Because every race has a couple things

1. A planned course that we can follow.  That plan God has placed before you.  Life this life is a crazy scavenger hunt with a moving target and no ending.
2. Races have a champion:  Jesus is our champion. He lived this life, the same way as us.  He had  mom, dad, brothers, sisters, went to school.  Dealt with drama, people trying to accuse him of things he didn’t do, people gossiping about him.   And he was perfect in his life as the model for us.
3. At the end of every race, there is celebration party!  Our celebration awaits us in heaven with the other champions who have run before us. Living faithfully for God.

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Jesus kept on running the race because of the Joy that was awaiting him.  He went through the painful parts and shame for us.  Because he knew the outcome. And like a world record holder that will never be wiped from the books: Jesus will always be remembered

Right now, I can say, things aren’t perfect, and the path can seem cloudy. But close your eyes and imagine what it’s going to be like in heaven!

This is my favorite part of Amazing Grace:

When we’ve been there ten thousand years,
Bright shining as the sun,
We’ve no less days to sing God’s praise
Than when we’d first begun.

10,000 years of worshipping and enjoying heaven is going to be like the first day we got there!

Friend, fellow runner, faithful warrior:  It may be a little tough right now, but there’s a beautiful end goal!
And I don’t want to be there alone, I hope we can usher in as many across that finish line as possible.

Until my legs give out

Until the wheels fall off the cart
Until I wear our my knees in battle.
Let’s keep on running with resolution for the final goal!

IAM a witness to the life of faith.
IAM called to testify about the life of faith through Christ Jesus
And I must carry out that calling with resolution and endurance