What an amazing journey this life truly is.
I turned 46 last week. Over the last year and really over the last few years for me have been extraordinarily reflective in nature. I have been considering what I have accomplished, what I haven't accomplished and what I still want to accomplish in the time I have left on the Earth.
A good chunk of my life has been dedicated to my family and for that I have no regrets at all. Fathering three sons and being actively involved in each of their lives at every point is priceless to me. There is certainly a shortage of true Fathers in the earth today.
Being a husband to Lori takes a chunk of time as well and again I have no regrets about that either. What a beautiful, incredible and unique woman she is and there is no one else I want by my side as the months and years continue to pass.
I was raised in the church and a significant part of my life has been spent in and around churches and ministries. Some of those situations I do indeed regret as I look back on them but some were very wonderful to be sure. I will say that some of the deepest parts of wounding and sorrow introduced to me and to my family have come at the hands of leaders in the modern church. Naive people dismiss that as me not being healed but that is not the case. In fact, when you have been abused, one of the signs you are healing or have been healed is that you can freely talk about it with no shame. That is exactly where I am today with it all.
I liken it to a bank being robbed. The bank isn't "playing the victim" or "in need of healing" when it hits the silent alarm. The robber is the perpetrator, not the bank. I am not playing the victim or in need of healing when I expose the wrongs that have been done to my family and I and those who claim such are exacerbating the problem. In churches, leaders have a greater responsibility (Hebrews 13 calls is a more strict judgement) to be extra careful with people. Any overseer should have a good reputation as being a strong family based person of sound and sober thoughts. Sadly, that does not describe everyone in those positions today. More on that in later blogs...
The picture I used today says a lot. You will never be free until you free yourself from the prison of your own false thoughts. All of us have had so many things happen spanning so many years in our lives and each of those things have the individual potential to take us a little bit off course from being the real person God intended us to be. Sometimes traumatic events can really pull us off course and then you compound those events over time and you can begin to see where you can really end up a prisoner of your own false thoughts.
I've seen it repeatedly where people build what I call "illusion bubbles" for themselves. They get to a place where they honestly believe something about themselves that just isn't factual and sometimes they form an emotional connection with that false person that they believe themselves to be so that any effort to correct them back into reality is met with some pretty harsh resistance. Sometimes that resistance will be that person completely blocking you out of their life.
An example of that happened to me last year. A local church Senior Leader felt that he was above Holy Scripture and the biblical rules about gossip did not apply to him and his wife. He felt that his position as a leader made him magically exempt from Paul's warning to not receive or pass on gossip. The Lord used me to bring correction but he was so convinced by his own illusion bubble that he was right, he cut all fellowship with us going so far as to block me on Facebook. You know it's serious when you get blocked on Facebook.. rotflol... but the larger point is very serious. People get these false ideas of who they are and it can really mess you up and end up costing you dearly.
In the late 90s I had a bit of an identity crisis of my own. I was (of all things) a professional wrestling promoter. What was REALLY going on is that I was running from the call of God on my life but Pro Wrestling became my ship that was heading away from Nineveh. My "whale experience" was the voice of God speaking audibly to me. His voice broke my pride and restored my love for Him and that would lead to an even longer process culminating in 2007 of Him teaching me how to love myself.
Ask the Holy Spirit right now this simple question. Who am I supposed to be? People get all caught up with what they are supposed to be doing but I believe if you can first see WHO you really are then that revelation will by default point you in the right direction of WHAT you are supposed to be doing.
Write something about yourself. No need to be fancy, just an overview.