Speaking Truth in Love, Resisting Offense, and Other Important Lessons
First of all we are commanded to “Speak the Truth in love”. So that we can ALL “grow up” into the image of The Anointed One (The Christ). To me Truth IS Love, because it is Truth that makes us free, and enables the spiritual growth process. Though, again motives matter. To speak Truth in Love, means to expound the ideas of a loving God, for the same reason He does, to save us from our iniquitous flesh and it's traps!
This does not usually happen while propounding a lot of politically or religiously acceptable – but Scripturally erroneous – deception! Untruth causes bondage and leads people away from God – Who Is The SOURCE of ALL TRUTH. Therefore anything but His Truth, spoken from a heart of real concern and desire to help, is not love.
I don't care how “good” pushing untruth or half-truth or popular opinion might make people “feel”. Pandering to the “FEELINGS” of the flesh, enabling flesh in any way, is the total opposite of LOVE. The flesh is born in leagues with the devil and has to be eradicated by Spirit and TRUTH. Flesh loves deception because deception never challenges it or deprives it! Feeding the flesh is giving the devil the keys to our safe – it is just throwing wide the door for him to rob us blind! Not much love in that!
Second. I have been a seeker of HIS TRUTH, for MYSELF, so that I do not continuously, unintentionally, give the devil access to my goods 24/7, most of my life! I have been slugging through the jungle of man-made religion, for most of my life as well, since I became an avid believer in the reality of Jesus, and The Word of God, as coming from GOD, THE CREATOR of the universe, at the age of 3. Not kidding. When I found Jesus it was the best day of my short life. As a victim of sustained and prolonged abuse, sexual and otherwise, from infancy, I was desperate for any experience that was not horrific, disappointing or crippling! I was desperate for love. He, Jesus, filled that need!
As a result of that meeting, because a kind pastor's wife introduced me to Him at a revival meeting, in a Sunday School class - the spiritual realm became MY reality. I was reading The Word, and was being used by The Spirit of God, in evangelism by the time I was 4 and 5 years old. I was baptized in water at the age of 8, and was teaching Sunday School with the approval of the Pastor by the time I was 12, and testifying of His love, grace and help, under the power of The Spirit in study hall my junior and senior years (before I was totally filled with His Spirit). I found the “upgrade” to the Baptism of The Holy Spirit (and asked Him to fill me with His presence & anointing) at the age of 20, through a friend in college.
I've been after His Anointing, and growing in it, ever since. Repenting as often as necessary so as to decrease to the fleshly ways of doing and being, so that HE can increase HIS rule over my life, so that I can increase in His Character and Wisdom, to the point of being able to allow Him to do what He does through me! I want to get out of HIS WAY! So if HE says to stop doing something I stop! And if HE says to do something different I DO! It's called OBEDIENCE. Because, being an actual reader (devourer) of His Word, I understand Him to insist that Obedience is the prerequisite to His Blessing over our lives - and the means to delight Him. Win/win!
Therefore, I believe that His Spirit will lead us into all TRUTH, as we follow. Not all at once! We couldn't bear it. But as we take one step He opens the door for the next and so it goes. Until we are walking in tandem with Him, and His nature is evident within us. So as HE illuminates something for me, and urges me to share it, I do, in hopes that others will also be illuminated.
HOWEVER, Truth has a way of offending people! OY! Especially those who aren't really interested in it. Or those who think they already have the market cornered in it. Those whose attitude is “My mind is made up, don't bother me with the facts, much less the TRUTH!”
Real Truth is only usually received by those humble enough to believe, or at least consider the idea that they may have missed something! And, just so everyone is clear, all TRUTH, in my opinion, must be confirmed and supported by The Word of God – it isn't randomly based on our feelings or opinions about a subject! The Truth usually challenges those! It isn't “my way, vs your way”. It is everyone finding THE WAY, and following HIM. So Truth requires change (repentance) on the part of everyone, especially the one conveying it! As I tell people frequently, “If what I say/write steps on your toes I'm sorry, please know that it had to stomp on mine first on the way over!”
I've said this a lot recently, but it bears repeating. If the subject matter on my page offends you, instead of spurring you on to repentance, then please feel free to go read someplace else! It isn't rocket science. No one is chaining anyone to this page. If the discomfort you feel does not prompt you to ask some serious questions of yourself, then that “Truth”, (1) either isn't for you at all, or, (2) it isn't for you at this time. OR, (3) there is a chance that it isn't truth, and I've made a mistake! No one is perfect! So. Do us all a favor and just keep moving!
(*If it's number 3 though, I'd appreciate a sincere heads up on that, instead of a scathing, condescending, religious rant – but hey, I carefully consider any and all input, and work to avoid offense at all cost, so do what you must! I'll pray over it and let The Spirit of God correct me lovingly, as He does!)
I never mind real discussion, in which folks disagree with what I am putting forth, as long as it is civil, and we are able to at least reach a place where we can agree to disagree! However, I will not tolerate inconsiderate bashing of ideas just for the heck of it, or religious or political bullying on my page. I will take arguments of that nature to the private message for further discussion, and if we can not come to a peaceful, civil, intelligent conclusion then we will part ways – meaning, I will block that person. Ain't nobody got time for that!
I definitely don't have time, won't make time, for mindless bickering over things that I've already made my mind up about. I will consider any valid, sincere, considerately expressed information! I do NOT think I've arrived! But when The Spirit of God has convicted me, and I've had it confirmed by The Word and people I trust, I most likely won't be moving! I don't really just get on here propounding other people's controversial ideas!
So. I am sorry if my method of conveying Truth, my tendency toward bluntness, my writing style, etc., offends anyone. That is never my intention. Please extend grace and don't jump to any conclusions!
But if anyone is offended by God's Truth then that is entirely their problem and not mine! That one must work that out with God, and suffer the consequences of giving way to the flesh, giving way to offense, and ignoring correction of The Spirit – even if that correction comes through an imperfect vessel. Because, for now, what other kind does He have? We are all being perfected the last time I checked. Grace, grace and more grace! It is an eternal commodity, thankfully, which doesn't run out, and is sufficient for all our needs, spiritually, mentally and emotionally – if we care to tap into it!
I hope that helps people deal with me as I learn how to manage this prophetic gift of expounding the Truth, at all cost. But again, if my processes are simply not tolerable to you then peace out! Please, go find greener pastures. No offense will be taken here. What you do, how you respond to your opportunities to be offended, is your choice, but how I respond to those is my responsibility. There are lovely, if difficult, lessons for everyone here! Don't feel alone. The struggle is real.
But whatever we do, we mustn't take the bait of offense. Offense is a pit of quicksand, which quickly pulls us to the bottom, and suffocates the life out of us. Offense gives way to the flesh, which then opens the door wide, whistles for the enemy, and gives him the power over our lives and the keys to our precious possessions! I urge you, and myself, don't do it!
It is one of his favorite tricks to defeat our spiritual growth, or at least complicate it! Oy. I hate that guy! We DO have an enemy, and it is NOT us! Our warfare is not with flesh and blood! So we need to be careful to operate in love at all times, but offense pulls us out of love, and into self-defense. Self-defense produces strongholds of fleshly and demonic operation and separates us from God, who is our real defense! So again, I adjure us all, don't do it! Don't take that bait.
I'll leave this with another spontaneous rhyme. I feel it coming on....
Don't Take That Bait!
Don't take that bait, that foul offense, that tempts the flesh to such incense!
Ask for His Grace to rise above, to find again the path of love!
Don't just succumb to that foul bait, which operates a kind of hate!
Our spirits, God can not transform, if we won't rise above the norm.
We must choose love at every turn, so we'll resist that awful burn.
Or at the least, His main desire, is that we burn with holy fire;
Only in His fire that does refine, transforming all to His design.
We must resist offense's fall, if we would answer Father's call.
We must step over what would trip, so that our love and faith don't slip.
Rest in His grace, He freely gives, that in HIS peace we all might live.
And if we do, then we will see, His stunning, Loving, Victory!
Which sees us through the darkest night, and brings us out in morning's light.
Because Yeshua set us free, and leads us on to Victory,
reflections of His loving way, will turn our darkness into day,
and give us grace that we might love, just like His Father up above,
He gave us life, He gave us choice, now it is time to lift our voice.
And pressing on into His love, we'll be like Father-God above.
So who's your God? Who guides your way? Your choices prove that every day.
Flesh or Spirit? Peace or Strife? Truth or lies? Death or LIFE?
CHOOSE LIFE & TRUTH, and stop the fuss, the choice is really up to us!
Selah & Shalom Havarim.