On...the Unknown God:

Sometimes, my thoughts are streamlined. Other times, they are nothing less than sporadic--shooting out in so many different directions like unassuming fireworks in a festive event.

This morning, I'm wondering how many of you really know God. Is He someone or something in the distant sun? Swimming in the midst of the galaxies or the milky way? Is He embedded in the minds of fiery radicalists, or is He just a quiet non-speaking entity? Is He all "fire and brimstone," or is He only a characteristic of "earth-and-water"? Who or what is He? Is He real?

In many ways, many seek to worship something. They long for something extraordinary. They thirst for a sign, or anything supernatural...a super man. So they plunge into diverse things, oh...there are so many different options today...you name it! There's something for anyone searching, in fact there are so many options out there such that when you blink your eyes and open them again you can make THE decision: which path to follow. It's that easy. It's public information, you could google it! But I want to introduce you to the One who created the universe and tell you some adjectives that describe Him...

1) When He speaks, His words do exactly what they are spoken for. They don't return to Him undone. He said, "Let there be light," and light has not ceased to exist till this very day. (Genesis chapter 1)

2) He reveals secret things if you let Him into your heart. I keep wondering how Elijah knew God was going to take Him away, and how those 50 prophets came to stand in front of the river Jordan that day because they knew something crazy was about to happen. God revealed it to them...they listened to their hearts, and they heard what God told them (2 Kings 2). He still speaks to our hearts today, if you're listening...(He was called the "Revealer of Secrets" in Daniel chapter 2: 46-48)

3) Healer. Jehovah Raphekah. Even after Lazarus was buried, God raised Him from the dead, opened the eyes of the blind, made the deaf to hear again, stopped the flow of a woman who had been bleeding for 12 years, dried up the deteriorating boils of lepers, identified a betrayer but loved him in spite of, ate with sinners and allowed a prostitute to wash His feet (For these details read the book of John).
4) Provider. Jehovah Jireh. Used five loaves of bread to feed 5,000 people. Caused a little oil in a jar not to run out. Told the fishermen to put their nets on the other side of the boat, and their nets almost broke with their new catch. He instructed the Ravens to bring bread and meat to Elijah when there was famine in the land (ravens are birds that have a varied diet, including dead animals...a.k.a. "meat"...so did you figure that the ravens could have eaten the meat themselves, but they delivered it to Elijah?). Oh yes, getting personal, He provided $13,000 for me when I was about to get kicked out of graduate school...I was given only a week to perform some sort of miracle!

5) Timely. Despite His ability to perform miracles in your life, He won't come when it's too early or too late. And He won't do it if it will be disadvantageous to you (even if you cry or wail). He knows those things that are good for you, so why would He respond in an untimely manner? He makes all things beautiful in their own time (Ecclesiastes chapter 3).

6) Teacher. He explains complicated things to the simple-minded. He instructs you just like the manual of a car would, or a cell phone. Step by step, if you follow His lead. He's the good shepherd (Psalms 23).

...and my point is...

I've actually experienced this unknown God and He is as real as it gets...

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The New Wine:


It stuck with her all these years, the melodramatic picturesque setting of the audience. The way the people looked at the stage with great expectations, the way they turned their heads sideways as they watched the play, and how they studied the unassuming looks of the characters. The way the old lady with the hat clapped her hands, and just how the well-built young men cheered, of which, by the way, some of them spoke to her after it was over. The way the people loved Shakespeare. The way they loved her.

Lucille was her name. She was always Juliet, and Maximus usually played Romeo. They played their roles really well, and no one dared contest with them in the entire village. The play was her pride. In this place she became someone else, a different person altogether. Oh, the joy of that! Instead of the poor church-rat she really was, she became the rich young woman who was in love with Romeo, the handsome man from a family her own despised. She always got lost in the moment.

But in a few days, BROADWAY would be coming to town. A new theatre had just been completed, more beautiful, exciting, and unfortunately more daunting. A new look, and new faces. She was completely afraid...afraid of what might happen to this place. She did not want to part with the old. Inside her, she knew people would stop coming here. And that the regulars would become strangers. She had the opportunity to audition, but she did not want to take it. She was afraid, really afraid. Afraid of the what the future held. Afraid of the new wine.

* * *

Have you ever been afraid of the "new"? Afraid to take hold of the unfamiliar? Afraid that what you have right now might be better than what you think you could have tomorrow? I know I have! I remember when I started attending my current church. I saw how people let go of themselves and go crazy for God, and inside my heart I called them lunatics. Come on now, what was all the noise about? What was this charade and hullabaloo? Like they couldn't keep quiet and listen in solitude. Every little tune from the piano made someone shout or leap for joy. Every sound of prayer made someone tear up. Couldn't they just do things like normal people? God was a quiet spirit, so what was all the noise about?

But the newness in my path was for a reason. Though some times we can pray in the quietness of our spirits, there are other times we may need to shout for help. There are other times when some thing like a word touches our hearts and we tear up. There are sometimes when we need to stand up and start jumping. It was a new wave of worship, and I just wasn't used to that!

This writing is not about "worship" though, this is just about letting God take over your life. Christianity is not a tradition, neither is it a religion. It is about the freedom to follow wherever God's spirit leads you. The freedom to part with the old and take in the new. Today, technology has reached a new high...with twitter, facebook, blogger, wordpress, linkedin, and so much more. People are using these social networks for the wrong reasons, but I totally believe there's something deeper than just social networking. There are lives to be taken for God, there is the new wine tapping on old doors...new ways for miracles to happen...new ways for God to visit you.

You might be the one who's stuck in the old, you feel something in your heart tearing apart, but you're still there trying to hold the pieces together. How about you do this? Let the old garments be torn apart, and put on a new you. Don't tell yourself, "this is just the way I am, I can't change." Change is not too far from you...it is only seconds away...closer than you even think.

DRINK IN THE NEW WINE...& POUR OUT THE OLD...Let God do what He's been trying to do with you...let Him in...He's knocking...

"And no one puts new wine into old wineskins; or else the new wine will burst the wineskins and be spilled, and the wineskins will be ruined. But new wine must be put into new wineskins, and both are preserved. And no one, having drunk old wine, immediately desires new; for he says, ‘The old is better.’” Luke 5: 37-39

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In rather pitiful haste, I held the bottom of my blue & gold evening garment, pushed my hair backwards and held it in a firmer hold with the black pin, and then I proceeded to climb the spiral flight of stairs which would lead me to the second-best vantage point in the theatre- the Mezzanine seats which were directly overhanging the symphony orchestra. I had been waiting for this moment for the longest time now...I had seen lesser orchestras, but nothing like this one. I've been told times without number that here in Chicago, my eyes will see and my ears will hear greatness, such that I have never heard before. As I sat down in my seat, I stuck my head out in a plight to identify the persons in this 100-membered orchestra.

This was the more modern form of a classical orchestra, in addition to earlier instruments such as flutes, oboes, clarinets, and bassoons, the woodwinds section had the piccolo, English horn, contrabassoon, and the famous soprano, alto, tenor, and baritone saxophones. Instead of just horns and trumpets, they had 3 trombones and a tuba. Oh, my...in my entire musical life, I had never seen any harp as big or as beautiful as this one, it lay there in the shadows, a late addition to the stringed violins and violoncellos. I felt like rising up to stare, but I was aware I was not the only one seated here, albeit excited. My heart skipped a bit when a tall gentleman walked to the center of the stage with his head held high, the conductor...adorned in a beautiful black tailed tuxedo. I was flustered because I knew the experience would begin any seconds from now. I shifted in my seat because I could not remain.

As I lifted up my eyes again, his hands began to move. I closed my eyes and listened...this was "symphony." Every tune aligned exactly the way the notes were written. There was no shift or error...just perfect harmony.

* * * * *

Last night, I came across, errr stumbled upon (I really stumbled upon it by mistake) the scripture where Jesus said "I will not call you servants, but friends," (John 15:12-17). He explained that He said this because servants never know what their masters are doing (they are only given instructions and they have to just go and obey, kind of like systematic robots or clones). Rather, God chose to call us "friends" because He wants us to understand His movements and His heart, and then when we understand Him we'll automatically obey His commands because we'll know the ultimate purpose. Perfect symphony. Unbreakable harmony.

It suddenly hit me that the way I understand some of my friends is ridiculous. Sometimes I say things like, "I knew you would do that," or "I know what you're thinking right now," or "wow, I know what you're about to do." I know these things because of the nature of our "friendship." Most times, the friends you roll with are like-minded...they think like you, act like you, and do the things you do.

I'm certain you're getting the point by now...we were created in the "image and likeness" of God, so if we truly understand our nature and where we've come from...we would automatically be like God. In perfect symphony...no shifts or errors. That's why you're not merely a "servant" (robot), but you're more of God's friend.

But there's always the propensity that you didn't know or understand this up till now, so you have to come to that realization right now and start working in a new dimension...as His friend. God does not intend for you to be His robot, moving without any emotion or inclination. Rather, He wants you to see through His heart and understand the reasons why He does the things He does, so that your obedience is not merely robotic or fake.

The bible says that Abraham was a "friend of God," and also that Enoch walked with God and was no more. Who were these people? Seems like they were in complete symphony with God such that it would have been hard to tell the difference.

Today, my charge is that you become someone who is in such perfect symphony with God, like the musical instruments in a 100-membered orchestra, such that people will not be able to tell the difference between your mind and God's mind. A TRUE friend of God.

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About your FRUITY Peculiarity...

It starts from somewhere inside you. You can't stop it, it's just who you are...you can't even help it. It heats up like a warm spring, bubbles up like waters in a sauna, and rises up like forceful conventional heat currents that have no choice but to rise...higher and higher, and higher into a distant place in the sky. It can't decline and refuse the path that has been paved for it, it either comes out of you as something to be acknowledged or something to be despised. It is you and you are it, this thing on the inside of you. It is intertwined with the ropes of your spirit, interjected by the thoughts of your soul.

"...every tree is known by its own fruit. For men do not gather figs from thorns, nor do they gather grapes from a bramble bush..." (Luke 6:43)

The things that come out of you are only an illustration of your "fruity peculiarity." You are like a tree planted by waters, but you are the owner of the roots and you direct the path you want the roots to take. Your roots could either go in the direction of the soothing and life-giving water, or you could direct them into an arid dry desert land (towards the opposite side).

At the end of the day, the key lies in your hands to be peculiar in a "fruity" way. No one will come to you for healing if you don't have the right words; no one will come for provision if you can't show kindness in simple and small ways; no one will come for laughter if you can't crack jokes; no one will come for lessons if you can't show any iota of brilliance; no one will come for your celebration when you are a dead-looking "frowner"; no one will smile at you if you never smile at anyone; no one will listen to you if you have no visions, goals, or dreams.

Who are you? What is your life about? Are you just merely existing, or do you know the reason why you're here? If you don't know, I'll let you in on a little secret. You were BORN for a golden purpose that no one else will do. If you don't do that which you were born to do, it will just be the loss of one more wasted life. God created you to be a solution to a problem...and you need to find that problem and solve it. You are PECULIAR, but in a FRUITY kind of way, such that if I should come near you today I should be able to smell the fruitiness of your future. You are a tree that needs to produce fruits, and by your fruits we will know that you are utilizing the things God has placed inside of you.

Everyone has a fruity peculiarity, but many haven't found theirs yet. How can you find it? By giving your life completely to Jesus. He's the only way...I can't tell you any other way, because I've tried Him and yes, I've found myself, my niche, my dwelling place, and a way to produce the fruits I was born to bear. Why else would you think I'd want to write about it? It's the only way...there's only one way to bear much fruits. Try this way.

May your own land yield its increase...(Psalm 85:12)...but you have to find that land first.

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