I am writing this from a small cabin in the mountains of Prescott AZ and the picture was taken on my hike. These retreat centers are great places to write. My phone service is limited and there is no internet service. Therefore, no distractions, except for the blustery wind rushing throw the tall pine trees.
(To be honest, there is one other distraction. I have a picture of Eli on my laptop and it is hard for me to not stare at it. ;))
On these mountain encounters, I always find myself consumed with Jesus. I teach about Him for hours each day. I read and study when not speaking. I meditate while walking the paths to and from cabins. I love retreats.
Today, I am overwhelmed with the radicalness of Jesus. He defied the norm. He rebelled against the status quo. Everything He touched was transformed.
He touched untouchables and they were healed.
He calmed waves and they obeyed.
He taught with authority and people listened.
He challenged the intellectuals and they caved.
He spoke truth and captives were freed.
He defied man’s authority and they yielded.
He left everything, acquired nothing, but gave everything.
He led by serving.
He loved without limits.
He never limited God’s power.
He stayed focused to the end and then died to give us life.
He lived at peace, died at peace, and left His peace.
He modeled life as it was meant to be.
T.W. Hunt said this of Jesus.
“When Jesus assumed human form, He did not leave eternity. He stepped into time and showed us how eternity could function confined by time. He demonstrated eternal life within time. Jesus showed us what future eternity will be like and what present eternity should be like.”
Present eternity is our here and now. Today! Sadly my life doesn’t reflect what Jesus demonstrated it should be. Not even close.
I protect myself from untouchables therefore they are not healed.
I run from storms and therefore they still rage.
I meekly proclaim His Word and people don’t listen.
I refuse to challenge others and they run amok misleading the world.
I am afraid to speak truth and captives are still chained.
I follow man’s ways and I am still bound.
I am holding on to my stuff, want more, and give little.
I choose to lead by manipulation.
I love with limits to protect myself.
I limit God by not expecting His supernatural miracles.
I focus on the things of this world and it is killing me.
I live in chaos, stress, and confusion and spread it around.
I see His life and refuse to suffer as He did.
When I look over my time, I see seasons of victory. I am maturing in many ways beyond anything I could comprehend. I know His power is in me and I have been His vessel to the world around me. There are many times of praises to His Name for what He has accomplished with this weak child.
But when I am on the mountaintop I sense the need for so much more. I want more of Jesus and more of His glory.
The plumb line is clearer. The target is into focus. The bulls-eye is my goal. Nothing else will satisfy. It’s all or nothing.
I want to live a radical life in service to a Jealous God. Just like Jesus.