Joining Jesus’ Revolutionary Kingdom

who will be kingGood Morning!  I’m glad we could meet again today.

Last week I said that Jesus’ one…ongoing message was this…”Join my Kingdom!’  Simply put, change your mind and attitude about you being your own king, and trust Jesus and make Him your new King.  How does that happen?  What does that look like?  I want to share with you today how to you can make Him your King and join His Kingdom.

I have had those people close to me, family, some friends, and many of the people I have had the joy of discipling tell me that I need to write books about ministry.  I always laugh and tell them my one book would be a bibliography of books that other people have written…my thoughts aren’t original or put together well…as you can tell.  Ha Ha.

Well, even in sharing how to make Jesus King I want to draw your attention to another source.  It called “The Two Ways to Live” by Matthias Media.  I really like their way of helping us understand the good news of God’s Kingdom.  I am going to put the link here, and rather than me sharing with you this good news, let them share it with you.  Click on this link to read this good news.

http://www.matthiasmedia.com.au/2wtl/index.php

What do you think?  Are you ready to have that conversation with God and tell Him that you are ready to make Jesus your King.  Do that right now.  If you need to, use the conversation that “Two Ways to Live” uses.

The third step they said was to keep on trusting.  That is what this blog is all about.  How do we continue to be followers of Jesus…how to we continue to let Him continue to be our King.  We will begin to explore that next week.

I am excited to be able to continue meeting with you over coffee as we talk about following Jesus.

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What was Jesus really trying to get us to do?

Really…when you think about it…what was the message of Jesus?GUWG-Kingdom-of-Heaven

I think that christendom has added so many layers and thoughts and views to the message of Jesus…that we have really gotten lost.  I mean…just to name a few….off the top of my head I think of gospel-centered,…and social gospel,….and people think that Christians are to be militant, and uh, the Jesus Movement, the “I Found it” campaign (if you are under 40 you probably don’t have a clue what i am talking about), Four Spiritual Laws, EE, FAITH, etc, etc. etc.  Several weeks ago our Pastor gave three examples of gospel presentations that our people could use to talk to people about Jesus.  (Even that word “gospel” is laden with baggage…according to some people.)  And…you know…I am not saying all those things are bad, and most of them do share the basics of what it means to trust Jesus as Savior, and I think people are all built different so different gospel presentations lend themselves better to different people, but….really, what was the message of Jesus?  What was His bottom line?  What did he go around preaching?

I think it is interesting to take a good look at the biographies of Jesus that we find in the Bible.  Read the beginnings of each one carefully.  What was the sermon that Jesus went around preaching to all the towns?

“Repent, for the Kingdom of Heaven is at Hand.”

That was His message.  Repeated over and over and over again.  But…how does that translate to our culture today, or any culture?  I think that is the beauty of the message…it transcends time and culture.

But how would I say it to people today?  Well, let me ask you.  There is a choice of two Kingdoms.  God’s Kingdom….and Satan’s Kingdom.  The Kingdom of God’s Son or a Kingdom of Darkness.  The bottom line is this.  Whose Kingdom are you in right now?  Whose Kingdom do you want to be in?  In the Kingdom of Darkness You are the King.  In the Kingdom of His Son, Jesus is the King.

You see, Jesus’ bottom line message is this, “Join my Kingdom!”  It is a revolutionary way of being…of thinking…of doing.  It goes totally counter-culture to the world.  Everything in our human spirit says, “Do your own thing, live your own life, make your own decisions, do what makes you happy, YOLO…

Jesus says, “Change your mind!  Join MY Kingdom!  Don’t be normal!  Be revolutionary!  Be counter-cultural!  Don’t live for you…live for your Creator.

What does Jesus really want us to do?  To leave our Kingdom and join His Kingdom.  To take off our crown and make Him the King of our lives.  How can you join His Kingdom…..

I’ll see you next week!

I am just who I am

Good morning!  Hope you are enjoying your coffee.

Some people may be thinking, “Boy, Duane is not very polished in his blog.”  Well several things.

I am not very polished anyway so it is easy to not be polished.  I am just who I am.  I am not trying to be something I am not, just trying to be real.

We are sitting in a coffee shop.  I am not trying to write a treatise or deep theological thoughts….I’m just having a conversation with you.

Which I guess brings me to my last point (small post, by the way, today…by design).  As I write this thing, I am imagining me sitting in DOCO, or Steak n Shake, or Starbucks…and just talking.  I am not doing a lot of rewrites or fixing, just trying to imagine having a conversation with one of the people I am discipling or have discipled.

How would we talk?  How would we interact?  What questions would come up?  What thoughts would we be having?

So you see, it’s just us hanging out…talking…sharing…

By the way, for the times I hang out with Jesus, I have been reading through the Bible every year.  This year I read through the Bible using You Versions “Digging Deeper.”  Every day is a chapter or two from the OT, a chapter from the Wisdom books and then a chapter from the NT.  Well….guess where I am in the OT?  That’s right…Leviticus!  We’re talkin’ a lot of blood flowing.  But I always like reading through Leviticus.  I think about those priests killing animals every day, the smell of blood in their nose, washing up constantly, the stains on their clothes.  And I think….as a priest, they deeply understood the depths of God’s hatred for sin.  I think….the people, knowing they would go through that ritual of sacrifice for their sins, they had an immediate consequence and cost for their sin.

I like going through Leviticus, it puts my sin in perspective for me.  It makes me more aware of my sin, and makes me even more aware and thankful that God provided “the” Lamb, Jesus, that pays theconsequence and cost of my sin.

Oh, and by the way, read Samuel’s blog post at his blog “Strength Through Weakness” on the acronym “FLAW”  Good stuff.

I gotta go.  I have to put together a worship guide before I go to Noonday.  I am praying for you today.

Why Coffee?

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I have already been asked, “Why coffee?”

Someone once asked me why, whenever I go out with people, does it have to involve food or drink. Several reasons.

On a purely human reason, food breaks down barriers. Over breakfast…or coffee…or whatever, people tend to share more. They are more willing to be free with their thoughts and emotions.

It does go much deeper than that. If I am to disciple others the way Jesus discipled others, then I need to understand how He did it. He did it in relationship.

Jesus’ entire ministry is relational. His humanity is relational. His methods are relational. His actions are relational. His death and resurrection is relational…so that I, His enemy, can be seated at His table…over coffee…in relationship.

What does that mean for the person who wants to be a disciplemaker of disciplemakers? He or she must be relational.

It has been said that if you look at the ministry of Jesus and explore the relationships in His ministry that He spent 75% of His time with His disciples and 25% with the masses. Jesus was into small groups. Jesus was into the personal relationships.

A favorite verse of mine that relates to this area is found in Mark three. After choosing the 12 out of many disciples the Bible says this; …”He named them apostles – to be with Him, to send them out to preach, and to have authority to cast out demons.”   The Holy Spirit breathed through Mark to write that the first reason for Jesus choosing the apostles was to “be with Him.” Jesus is again demonstrating to us that we disciple people in relationship!

Why do coffee? So that we, walking like Jesus walked, can meet in relationship.

Let’s do coffee.

Because of several things that have happened today I am going to finally launch my blog.  I have always hesitated to do this because, well, a lot of times I think people are a little self serving to think that what they have to say the world cares a whit about.  I didn’t want to be one of those people who think because I have a thought it is worthy of broadcasting to the world.  I mean, sheesh, who do you think you are? Anyway, Seth Godin, I blogger I follow, said that today was Ruckusmaker Day.  If you ask my friends and co-workers, I tend to be one of those people who like to raise a ruckus for the sake of raising a ruckus.  He said a way to do that was to blog. Then, I had a old mentee of mine (you know, I was a mentor, therefore, he was a mentee, or maybe a mentos), said that if anyone ever asked him to write a book he would just refer them to me. Ha Ha!   That made me laugh.  Seriously, though, that is a humbling thing for him to say. So, what is this blog all about?  It is just about you and me sitting down at a coffee shop and us just talking about life; what makes me tick, what do I find to be foundational truths in life, some of my random thoughts about what is going on in the world…you know, just having coffee and shooting the…uh…breeze.  Yeah, that was the word I was looking for. Yeah, we will meet every couple of days or so.  I might have an agenda…I might not.  So, grab a cup of coffee, a danish or donut, and let’s just talk.