Why I Stopped Reading Scripture

A Little Background

Years ago I was very diligent and intentional about reading scripture. As I became more and more of a sermon-junkie, on a mission to consume all the information I could find, I grew an aversion to reading scripture. I couldn’t figure out why this change happened.

At some point in my spiritual walk I stopped reading scripture as a means of connecting with God’s heart and instead I began using it to validate my own beliefs, doctrines, etc, etc. I pursued head knowledge over heart connection, and that inversion of priorities caused a disruption in my walk.

The Lesson being Learned

I’m learning that when I approach His holy word with an agenda, I become dissatisfied and frustrated. Why? Because no matter what doctrine I’m attempting to validate through my searching, there will always be those scriptures that challenge the ideas I’ve clung to. If child-like faith isn’t my first priority when reading scripture, I will never be content with the fact that this sacred text is full of mystery, and I will certainly never be able to enjoy that mystery the way I believe God intends us to.

So, here’s to reading scripture with no agenda.. to re-prioritizing heart-connection over head-knowledge.. and to undue burdens (ie. the need to be validated) being cast off.

Thanks for reading!


Encourage or Support Me!

If you feel so inclined as to encourage or support me, like this post, leave a comment, or subscribe!

A couple of other ways you can support me is by using my referral links to the sites below, if you feel so inclined to check them out. Thanks for stopping by, and be blessed!

Buy Bitcoin at Coinbase: Use my referral link when you sign up and we’ll both receive $10 worth of Bitcoin when you buy $100 or more in Bitcoin. — https://www.coinbase.com/join/59401469269d7a370996305c

Download the new Brave Browser: It’s the fastest browser on the market, and it’s privacy-focused, blocking all ads, trackers, finger-printing, etc. Download on Desktop or Mobile with my referral link and I’ll receive $5 worth of $BAT, a cryptocurrency that runs on Brave (honestly, I am accumulating as much BAT as I can because I had an open-vision in 2018 that BAT will be the first cryptocurrency in the world to go mainstream). — https://brave.com/emi816

 

unsplash-logoJohn-Mark Smith

Why You Can’t Stop Sinning

Guilt, Shame, and Condemnation

These 3 enemies of God increase our propensity toward sin. They are lies that can lead us away from fellowship with him. They alone are the driving factors behind perpetual cycles of unwanted sin. The 3 enemies of God insist on measuring your worth according to your works, and you will never, ever measure up. When you believe you don’t measure up, you fall into sin.

Love

Love increases our propensity toward outward holiness. In this context, I am not speaking of love as an outward act. While giving love is important, it is secondary to receiving it. If we don’t first receive it, we’ll will have nothing to give. It is the fuel to our fire, the foundation through which our outward holiness is sustained.

The Solution

The solution to compulsive sin is doing nothing but receiving God’s love for you. God is most pleased with you when you are most satisfied in His son, not when you are doing all the right things and avoiding all the things you shouldn’t do. Again, we do not bring glory to God by trying to live upright, rather we bring the most glory to God when we are most satisfied in his son. If you can’t stop compulsively sinning, whether it’s an addiction, anger issues, or anything else that God has promised you freedom from, try resting in the truth that Jesus has made you righteous, by grace through faith, entirely apart from what you’ve done, haven’t done, or are doing.

When you base your righteousness on how “holy” you are living, you invite guilt, shame, and condemnation to judge you. But when you recognize that Truth is higher than your feelings and circumstances, you can then stand on the truth that you are righteous, pure, and holy!

So throw away how you feel. What you did last night or last week or 10 or 20 years ago has no bearing on your righteousness. When you can look at your past mistakes, no matter how long ago or how recent they are, and say, “God doesn’t remember you, so neither will I,” you will find true freedom in Christ. After all, if God doesn’t remember your sins, who are you to remember them? When you choose to no longer remember your own sins, you are thinking like Christ, and the desires of your heart will automatically transform and you will find yourself living in the center of God’s will.

Photo by Hugues de BUYER-MIMEURE on Unsplash

This Series Changed Our Life

This guy Jim Baker from Zion Christian Fellowship in Columbus, OH is the real deal. I saw him at a weekend conference at a local church called Life Center Lynchburg, where he taught on healing the sick. At the end of it, I went to his merch table to see what kind of goods he brought with him, and one of them was a series on finances. I did not know what to expect with this teaching, but his teachings on healing the sick were so good that I had to get this.

I cannot overstate what I am about to say. . . this may have been the best investment I have ever made, and it is not even about how to manage your finances, rather it is about maintaining a biblically-based heart toward wealth and prosperity. Watching just the first two of these messages caused us to repent from old ways of thinking about money and instead take on new ways of real stewardship. We have virtually no fear or worry with giving our offering at church anymore, no matter what situation we are in, and our own needs are not just met, but exceeded, every single month since watching this series.

The series that I purchased contains 16 sermons on the topic, however ZCF’s YouYube channel contains an 8 part series of the same series, just condensed. Again, I cannot recommend this series enough. It has changed our lives, and if you give it a shot, I have no doubt that it will change yours as well. Here is the first one. You can watch the rest on YouTube.

If you know of an awesome message or series on this topic, please share in the comments below. I’d love to check it out. And don’t forget, if you are interested in supporting me, and you are interested in downloading a new web browser from Brendan Eich (creator of JavaScript and co-founder of Mozilla and Firefox) that is a full ad and tracking blocker, I will get $5 worth of its associated cryptocurrency called BAT when you use our referral link: https://brave.com/emi816 – Thank you!

Featured Image by rawpixel on Unsplash

Prophetic Dreams

I’ve been considering publishing some of my prophetic dreams lately. I don’t know how beneficial it could be for readers, but my primary motive is to simply record them. That being said, I’ll go ahead and share a prophetic dream that I had on Sunday night. I will also share with you how I interpret them, but I would also like to invite you to give me your thoughts on them. If there are any additional meanings or symbolism that you notice, please do share in the comments.

The Dream:

An old friend named Anthony was standing in front of me. I offered him to eat from a bowl of grapes that I had sitting on a table. I had no expectation of him taking any, and I was correct as he refused to eat any. After a brief moment, he reached over and grabbed a couple of them and began eating. I was very surprised, and very glad.

My Interpretation:

I don’t believe this old friend of mine in this dream literally represents him, rather it’s about what he reminds me of, and that is based on the last few interactions I had with him, where he was closed-off to anything I had to say.

I believe that Anthony represents the attitude I expect to be met with when I begin to bring a stronger message of grace into the church, which again is closed-off to what I am teaching. I believe the grapes represent a toned down message of the Gospel for non-wine drinkers (ie. legalists who have never had a sip of the new wine that is grace). In other words, I believe Abba is showing me not to force wine down people’s throats, but rather ease them into it with something that is more palatable for them.

Again, I would love to hear any feedback on this. If you think my interpretation is way off, please let me know. If you think I might be missing something big, again, please let me know. If you think it’s just a dream and nothing more, lol, let me know!

One Way to Support Me

Lately I have been considering being more consistent in these blog posts, however I am very busy and it is not exactly a profitable activity for me, lol. So if you would like to support me or encourage me to keep writing, here is one way you can do it:

My wife and I are invested in a cryptocurrency called Basic Attention Token. I won’t go into the details, but in short, this token will be utilized on the Brave platform. Brave is a new secure web browser that protects user data by blocking all ads and trackers, and it will even be releasing a new feature for Tor tabs in the coming weeks. The reason we are invested in this cryptocurrency is because I had several prophetic dreams about it last fall where a stranger would approach me and tell me about it, even suggesting that I buy some. We have already made quite a bit from this investment, and yet it still has a long way to go!

If you want to give the browser a test-drive on mobile or desktop, I just ask that you use my referral link, as I will receive $5 worth of the token for each download.

You can get it here: https://brave.com/emi816

Thank you!

Brave browser basic attention token photo

The Prodigal Sons’ Father Does The Unthinkable

The Fathers rewards are not based on his kids’ behavior, good or bad, but according to who they are.
What if we raised our children this way? I remind my kids daily that I’m proud of who they are, especially when they mess up. Behavioral correction and discipline should always be accompanied with edifying words of security.

Ava and Owen cannot choose to stop being my kids, therefore they can do nothing to escape my love. Whether or not they choose to accept my rewards is entirely up to them, but they will always be available to them.

How we think He looks at us and treats us determines how we look at and treat our children. If we do not respond to our kids the way Abba responds to us, we are wearing the wrong lenses.