Monday, March 31, 2008
Saturday, March 29, 2008
For he that will love life, and see good days, let him refrain his tongue from evil, and his lips that they speak no guile: Let him eschew evil, and do good; let him seek peace, and ensue it.
— 1 Peter 3:10, 11
Do you want good relationships? Do you want to live a long and happy life with your spouse, family, and friends? If your answer is "Yes, that is exactly what I want," you need to pay close attention to these words of Peter.
The word "refrain" to me means to pause. It means to take a break; to take a rest; or to cease for a moment from what one is doing. Years ago, Dick gave me a small sign I hung in my kitchen. It reads THINK in capital letters. At the time, it reminded me to be cautious while working in the kitchen. It was commonplace for me to cut myself, burn myself, or to drop and break glasses! Being heavily medicated had many tradeoffs and these were just a couple. Therefore, while I was about my business in the kitchen I would often look up and see the sign and it instilled in me a pause for a moment and allowed me to make a clear decision. So not only words but also actions can not be taken back. Once said or done it is out there! And depending on the word or action it can cause destruction not only to self but to others whom we love as well. The words or actions cannot be taken back!
Can you think of a time when you got so angry you exploded and spewed destructive words? Were you sorry later you said them? This is what Peter is talking about here. I believe Peter is speaking to husbands and wives urging them to make sure their lips "speak no guile" which is deception and manipulation.
These are destructive to any relationship. When a husband and wife manipulate, deceive, or lie to each other, they create an atmosphere of distrust that disrupts their ability to maintain a peaceful, harmonious home. That is why Peter urges spouses to stay out of the deception and manipulation business!
Think of your relationships at work. What happens if you use deception and manipulation with other co-workers or superiors? You break a trust, don't you? When a trust is broken with a colleague or supervisor, the possibility of advancement in that position diminishes. If you want to have a good life and happy relationships, you must learn to take a lifelong break from speaking evil. You must also determine in your heart that you will no longer play the manipulation game with your spouse, family, friends or others in your life!
Peter says that instead of taking that wrong route, you must "eschew evil" or
Intentionally turn away from saying something evil. We must put aside destructive negative patterns and practices. There must be an intentional turning away from every destructive behavior pattern and an intentional turning toward actions that build trust and make a relationship strong and healthy.
There was a time in my life when my grandmother would say, "Show me your friends and I will tell you who you are and what you are up to". She could tell what my character was by visiting with my friends and listening to them talk and interacting with one another. How much greater our actions speak than our words.
Not only do we need to watch and think of how we speak, we should get creative and put some effort into thinking of ways to be loving and pleasing to others. If you want your marriage and other relationships to be blessed, strong, long-lasting, and healthy, you must deliberately look for ways to be a blessing. Find ways to become a benefit to your spouse and friends.
Peter tells husbands and wives to "seek peace" instead of constantly getting into conflicts with each other. The word seek tells me that sometimes peace is not evident; we must search it out! We must be constantly looking for evidence of peace. When a person is straining forward with all his might, he is committed having a never give up attitude. He will not stop until he finally obtains that which he deeply desires!
"Peace" in a marriage does not happen accidentally. When a couple has peace and harmony in their relationship, they have achieved that goal through hard work, patience, understanding, and a never-give-up desire to have peace. One does not have to work as hard with co-workers and friends. They are only part time in our lives.
Early on in our marriage, I can remember having strong differences of opinions with Dick. Knowing my character--strong willed and sometimes thick- headed I knew that I needed time out from what could be heated arguments. Time out to think and cool down so I could approach the topic level headed! Dick was the same. We knew we needed to separate then come together at another time for discussion. Many events and misunderstandings can occur to disrupt peace in a relationship, so your desire for marital peace must be stronger than any other forces. If you are not totally fixed on having peace with your spouse, the devil will find a way to constantly get in between the two of you and cause division.
Peter says that if you are going to have this kind of peace between you and your spouse, you must "ensue it" -- to hunt it down, to chase it, or to pursue it at all cost.
When I get my mind fixed on something, no one can change my mind.. It is as though I am in a hunt and expecting to win a trophy. I will not quit, slow down, or give up—not until I reach my goal. Therefore, I will be steadfast. I seek God for what He would have me change. Look for opportunities to be pleasing to others and be determined to have God manifest in your lives.
This is not a quick process. It might take a long time to achieve the desired results. This means peace will not come to us by accident. If we are going to have peace in our relationships — especially our marital relationship — we must put on our thinking caps and develop a plan for peace! If necessary, we must be willing to stalk peace and follow the leading of the Holy Spirit
Remember, we live in a day when marriages are quickly made and quickly dissolved. Therefore, if you see a healthy marriage that has lasted through many years, realize that this couple has worked very hard to have such a good relationship.
I urge you to take Peter's words deep into your heart. Determine to do everything you can to make your marriage strong and healthy. It is going to take hard work and commitment to make it happen. But, if you want to experience a happy, fulfilling life with your spouse, every bit of that hard work will be well worth it in the end!
Sunday, March 23, 2008
Let us hold fast the profession of our faith without wavering ;( for he is faithful that promised ;).
— Hebrews 10:23
In the seventies, I was introduced to an artist, Sammy Hall. Music has always spoken to me, in the past and even today! He sang a song "Don't Let Anyone Steal your Dream." Not only let them steal your dream but just take it and dump it off somewhere to rot. Back then most of my dreams were to meet my expectations materialistically and emotionally. Today, I focus on what God has called me to do! Yet in either case, I refuse to allow anyone to steal, take or destroy my God given dream to reach others with His love, salvation, healing and deliverance. My ultimate dream is to speak to the multitudes and testify to what He is doing on earth today!
What do you want God to accomplish through you in this life? What are the dreams you think about every night when your head hits the pillow, or every day when no one else is around? Do you daydream about what you would like to become or do in the years that lie ahead? Have you considered the possibility that these daydreams may in fact be the will of God for your life — dreams He placed deep down inside your spirit that are starting to be awakened? Is it possible that this is the timing for God's dream for your life to be ignited in your soul?
Dreams are powerful. They usually seem impossible at first, but those who dare to do the impossible are the ones who eventually see the impossible come to pass in their lives. And with God all things are possible—therefore, why not dream BIG! Everything great starts as a dream. Consider the example of Thomas Edison, who worked so long and furiously to realize his dream of the light bulb. Although Edison failed literally thousands of times in the earliest pursuits of his dream, he learned from every failure and pushed forward. Finally, his dream came to pass, and it changed the course of human history.
What if this brilliant man had given up and given in to discouragement? I am sure someone else along the way would have invented the light bulb, but Edison would not have had the great honor of being a part of it.
There are loads of Biblical examples of individuals who had a dream. Joseph with the coat of many colors! He was cast away by his family as a slave, and as dead. Because Joseph hung onto his dream, he ultimately was able to rescue his family. Moses had the Promised Land! After wondering around for years and finally reaching the Promised Land. Let us look at the dream God gave Abraham — called the father of our faith — regarding a new land and a new people. When God first spoke to him about the son He would give him, Abraham and his wife had long been infertile and unable to conceive a child. The thought of having a baby probably seemed like an unattainable fantasy to them. They could have asked themselves, Is this really the plan of God for our lives, or is this a hallucination? Are we delirious?
God also promised Abraham a new land but didn't tell him where it was located. In their efforts to find that land, Abraham and Sarah were stricken with colossal challenges, problematic circumstances, and horrible dysfunctional family problems. First, Abraham's father died. Then they lost their nephew Lot to Sodom and Gomorrah . Abraham also took Hagar as a second wife, producing a son that didn't belong to Sarah and a great deal of jealousy and strife. In addition, Abraham and Sarah experienced a terrible famine in their promised territory that forced them to leave due to a lack of food. Traveling to Egypt in search for food, they soon found themselves evicted from that land as well.
At any moment, it would have been so easy for Abraham and Sarah to say, "Enough is enough! Pack it up — we're going back home to the city of Ur !" But instead of giving in to defeat and discouragement, they held tightly to the dreams God had put in their hearts and kept pursuing those dreams until they had witnessed their fulfillment..
God can only give us the dream. It is up to us to hang on, be steadfast and pursue it no matter what. If you want to see the dream God has given you fulfilled in your life, it is imperative that you have this same attitude. As Hebrews 10:23 says, "Let us hold fast the profession of our faith without wavering; (for he is faithful that promised;)."
Hold fast, it could be a roller coaster ride. Life is full of surprises and curve balls. For your dream to be realized there is a process of preparation, cultivating and planning. Then of course there are those events that un-expectantly try to steal the dream and make it seem not worth pursuing.
Once you have truly made this dream yours, having hidden it in your heart and made it part of you, you will be on your way to possessing the land (so to speak). It does not matter how long it takes, you just know that it will be so! As long as it is yours, it belongs to no other, it is YOURS.
The phrase "hold fast" could mean that you will possess this dream and hold it captive in your heart like a thick headed mule! You will eat it, drink it, play it, and sleep it refusing to let it slip away from you.
This is the attitude you must have if you want to see your God-given dream come to pass. You have to wrap your arms around that word from God and never stop believing and pursuing your dream until it comes to pass. If you'll hold fast to your dream, it won't be able to get away from you, nor will anyone else be able to take it away from you!
When you finally discover God's will for your life — when His plan finally begins to awaken in your heart and you know exactly what you are to do — hold fast to that dream.. Tightly embrace what God has shown you. Seize it — wrap your arms of faith around it. Hold it down, and hold it tight!
Whenever you are tempted to get discouraged, give up, and release your dream, remember Abraham and Sarah. Although it took them awhile to receive their dream of a son, and although they had to overcome titanic hurdles along the way, they refused to let go of that dream and eventually saw it come to pass. In the end, they discovered that their dream was not a hallucination; it really was a word from God!
If you'll hold tight and refuse to let go of YOUR dream, it will just be a matter of time until you see it come to pass! Place all your weight on top of that dream so that NOTHING can steal it away from you!
Boldly declare that your word from God will come to pass! It may take a little while for it to happen, but you will firmly hang on to the promise God has given. And because you have the tenacity of a bull and refuse to let the dream slip from your heart, as you stand by faith and declare that it is only a matter of time, you will see the manifestation of that Godly dream come to pass. Declare it in faith by the blood and in the name of Jesus!
Small thin grass like blades have begun to emerge through the soil.. It seems too early for such fragile green growth! Shall I cover them with mulch, I thought. No, I decided, and the growth continued! It is much too cold, hurling wind and icy rain still falling down. Those gentle little blades will surly never see flower.
To my amazement along came the buds and then the flowers. And I thought they would surly die! What a gift of hope—to see such lovely vivacious color in the midst of cold stormy weather. I remain in hibernation, yet these fragile flowers continue to withstand, cold, wind, and even snow!
Purple for royality. Yellow for hope. Scattered in the front of our home they are there. Purple and Yellow crocuses! As proud as they can be they with-stand the icy rain, cold gusts of wind and less then desirable temperatures. They bring their sign of hope for a pleasant and fragrant spring to summer.
As I gazed upon the crocuses, my mind began to drift to the cross. The color purple triggered the thought of our high priest! Our eternal father sent His son as a fragile human to give us hope and much more—He lit the way with truth and eternal life.
As a small and delicate babe, He came as a fragile child yet manifested the Great I am's intention to all man kind.
It is my prayer that today will be a remembrance to you of the hope Christ gave us! His genuine love through his most heart wrenching death to the utmost powerful force of His resurrection!
Saturday, March 22, 2008
All those who have ears to hear and eyes to see what the Lord is about to do!
When Christ came to dwell within us, do we became new creatures? Yes, our spirit man was awakened and became brand new because of the blood of Jesus… Some may say it is then that we are welcomed into the Kingdom of heaven and we have eternal life with God our Father and our brother Jesus. We are truly alive in Christ and led by the Holy Spirit to live according to His statute.
Is our salvation with fear and trembling? How does that work? Are we fearful of what the Father might do to us if we sin? The only fear is being in awe of Him. We are so in love and so loved that we begin to seek His guidance and His revelation for our life. This is the beginning of our transformation journey. Remember, we do not finish this task of transformation until we meet with HIM in eternity!
Is our salvation conditional? Some may say no. Yet if we deny who Christ is and what He has done for mankind is that not blaspheming the Holy Ghost? And therefore, do we loose our salvation? This could be perceived as leaking! Our ego comes into play and for some reason fear or ego is in motion and we reject Jesus! We became weak and we leaked!
Definition of leak: Think of yourself as a balloon filled with air and floating about. The air represents the infilling of the Holy Spirit, the Father's grace, and your understanding of your spiritual walk. The air is being supplied daily… in the reading of His word, your journaling, listening to worship music, worshiping, and going about the Father's business with power.
Then we discover the slightest pin hole. The balloon begins to leak! It continues to leak. And it will deflate completely if we do not continue in our daily walk with the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit.
The gift of salvation is free and in order to establish that gift in our lives it takes choices and it takes the working out of our old man into a new creature in Christ. All the promises are yea and amen! Yes they certainly are! Yet are they conditional? Jesus said, "Go and sin no more" and "take up you mat and walk". What if the man he was speaking to decided he could not take up his mat again? So his mortal man leaked! Fear or unbelief enters in our minds and we loose what the Lord has placed within. Is this possible? I say yes. Does our heavenly Father want this to happen? "NO"
God's love and mercy opened the way for our salvation through Jesus' birth, life, death and resurrection! Now we apply His grace-- His strength-- to carry on the works that He has in store for us. It was His grace that enabled us to confess with our mouth that He is Lord and Savior. "It is by our faith we are healed". That is for the believer!
What about the heathen? We are all children of God; therefore, does the heathen also get healed! If only by the faith of a mustard seed you can move mountains, so how much more of those promises can we appropriate in our lives? How much more grace can we receive? It is endless. It is our choice and it is our hunger for the things of God that will enable us to stand and walk forward. It is our continued relationship with the Father that will grow us and enable us to continue in our healing, in our life and be able to be a testimony for His Glory! It is all conditional, my beloved friends.
Only the Father knows what is expected from each of us.. So do not second guess. Don't judge or examine or try to qualify this or that work, miracle, or out-pouring of God! We are unique like the snowflakes, like our finger prints, like our DNA. So with all of this I say, stand firm in the things the Lord has given you. Stand when all else falls, Stand when you question. Just Stand knowing that He is at work in all of us.
The good Lord is able to do all things in us and through us, I believe. The Lord is good and we will see His goodness manifest in this land of the living. We all need to do our part and lean on Him in our weakness and encourage others in the strengths He has given us.
"Lord, bring me up. Lord, take me up. Lord, let me be less in my intellect and more in Your knowledge and understanding. Lord, take me to the depths of your love. Lord, take me to places I have never been. Lord, show me where I need to be in You. I will stand in the faith You have given me. I will grow in that Faith and I will accomplish the deeds you have set before me! Amen."
Friday, March 21, 2008
Doing Things Decently and in Order
Let all things be done decently and in order. — 1 Corinthians 14:40
How does God want us to worship Him? This question has been asked by different denominations throughout the centuries.
In the church I grew up in, I remember being taught that any other church was in sin and if we participated in their ritual we would be committing sin. We deemed those people "incorrect" because their services weren't conducted "decently and in order" — at least not according to my church's perspective.
But over the years, I have come to learn that "decently and in order" can mean different things to different people. What is acceptable to one group may be outrageous and offensive to another group. What is deemed holy, sweet, and touching by one group might be viewed as dead and dull to another. Everyone has their own opinions about what is appropriate or inappropriate in worship.
The Body of Christ is composed of too many different groups to list them all here, but here are a few: Catholic, Orthodox Catholic, Baptist, Episcopalian, Methodist, Lutheran Pentecostal, and Charismatic.
It shouldn't surprise us that Christians have differing opinions about the right and wrong way to worship God. It also shouldn't surprise us that most people assume that their form of worship is the most scriptural.
So who is right and who is wrong? Is there only one correct form of worship? Could there possibly be room for a variety of different expressions of worship in the Kingdom of God ? And are we ready to honestly ask ourselves, if our opinions about worship are influenced only by the Bible, or are we also influenced by our culture and upbringing? What are the guidelines set forth in Scripture?
You may personally believe that praise and worship with instruments, clapping, dancing, and all kinds of celebration is the right approach to worship. Or you may be a person who loves a quieter, more structured form of worship with hymns and organ music. Either way, you may have a host of scriptures to back up your conviction and support your view of what worship ought to be.
However, the New Testament basically gives us only one rule to follow in regard to what is acceptable and appropriate in worship. That rule is found in I Corinthians 14:40, where the apostle Paul tells us, "Let all things be done decently and in order."
To have an honest heart and walk in it is being decent to me! It carries the notion of something that is done properly as opposed to improperly. It has to do with intent and motivation more than outward action, although such a good intention always results in right actions. So what is the heart motivation?
The word "order" means organized and well planned. Nothing should be put together as a last minute show! Worship is neither last minute nor is it a show. We should not gather hastily yet be prepared to worship our King allowing for the Spirit to move and live amongst us.
Order also refers to being respectful of others. Wait for people to finish a thought or an action taking your turn in a loving graceful manner. Complying with the atmosphere is another sense of order. You might not like the procedure in the church you visit yet you are subject to their order and respond in a respectful, deferential, courteous, accommodating, as well as being well-mannered, and polite.
This throws open the door to all kinds of worship! It can be quiet, loud, soft, or bold. The important thing is that the time of worship would not be something thrown together at the last minute without thought or organization. After all, we're talking about believers coming together to worship the Almighty God! Therefore, when we plan corporate worship, it should be well thought out and organized. Additionally, our time of worship together should be well-mannered, respectful, and polite.
A group of believers can be bold, loud, and well mannered all at the same time. They can also be soft and quiet while at the same time rude and offensive. The style, use of instruments, and volume level are not the biggest questions in God's mind. The big question in His mind is this: What is their intent and motivation? If the group's intent and motivation is correct, their worship will be accompanied by an attitude that reflects the character of Jesus Christ.
So don't get upset if others worship a little differently from how you are accustomed to worshiping. Jesus is listening to their hearts. He is watching to see how much energy and forethought they put into the plan before they enter into His Presence. Their form of worship may be different than yours, but if they are worshiping God from a pure heart and with their entire being, you can rest assured their worship is acceptable to Him!
So where is the punch line, Dianne? The Lord is clearly speaking to me these days as Dick and I visit various churches and denominations. And I believe the truth is that God is more interested in the condition of our heart than the style of worship we use in the format of our church service.
PUNCH LINE: So instead of focusing on who has the best form of worship, concentrate on whether YOU have an open, pure heart before God!
So Lord we check our hearts this day:
Am I being tolerant and nonjudgmental towards those who worship God differently? I need to realize that as long as they worship Jesus and do it with all their hearts, I am thankful they are your children, worshiping in spirit and in truth.
Monday, March 3, 2008
Unfaithful creatures! Do you not know that friendship with the world is enmity with God? Therefore whoever wishes to be a friend of the world makes himself an enemy of God. Or do you suppose it is in vain that the scripture says, "He yearns jealously over the spirit which he has made to dwell in us"- James 4:4-5
Has there ever been anything you wanted so badly that you just could not get it out of your mind? Every time you tried to think about something else, your mind just kept drifting back repeatedly to that thing you desired. Finally, your urge to possess it became so intense every fiber of your being wanted to reach out and capture it before it was too late?
Let me use a different illustration to make this point. If a drug addict or an alcoholic abruptly decides to stop doing drugs or drinking after many years of chemical abuse, what happens? Unless that person receives a miraculous deliverance, it probably won't be too long before his body begins to crave those chemicals. In fact, his appetite for drugs or alcohol might become so forceful that he doubles over in agony. That is how much his body yearns for a "fix" of what it has habitually received in the past.
When I was dating my husband I just never got enough of his company. I would be craving the scent of his cologne. What an intense desire we still have for one another. Now that I am here in Florida, I still am yearning for hear his voice. Time is getting close for my return and I have an intense hunger for his gentle loving touch.
Usually the word lust is used to indicate an intense yearning for something that is morally wrong and sinful. It is the pitiful picture of someone, such as a drug addict or an alcoholic, who needs his "fix" so seriously that he is doubled over, racked with pain, and crying out, "Please, someone, give me what I need!"
Remarkably, James 4:5 describes an intense desire the Holy Spirit has for us!
The word jealously or lust is sometimes used in this verse. Only this time the word is not used to describe the painful addiction of a drug addict or alcoholic. It is used to depict the Spirit of God! There is obviously some object that the Spirit of God craves. In fact, if you go to the Greek, the word pictures Him as desiring it so desperately that He is like one who needs some type of "fix" to satisfy an addiction. He is crying out, "I have to have it! I cannot wait any longer! Give me what I crave! Give me what I am aching and yearning to have!"
But, what does this mean? What is James 4:5 saying to us? What does the Holy Spirit yearn for so sincerely that the Bible would picture Him in this way?
In James 4:5, the Bible reveals the intense yearning of the Holy Spirit to have us entirely for Himself. That should be no surprise to us. He is our Indweller, our Shelter our Sanctifier, and our Source of power. His attention, His gifts, His power, and His Word are all directed toward us. He is in love with us!
The Holy Spirit is so in love with us that He wants more, more, more, and more of us. Every day He wants our time, our attention, our devotion, and our fellowship. If we deny the Holy Spirit what He wants from us, He cries out, "I need you! I must have you! I want to fill you, empower you, and flood you with My divine love and life!"
Never forget that the Holy Spirit is a Divine Lover who lives on the inside of us. He passionately yearns to fulfill His responsibility to the Father to help, teach, guide, and empower us.
The Holy Spirit desires to possess us - all of us. Because of this intense desire, He is focused on changing us, empowering us, conforming us to the image of Jesus Christ, and helping us fulfill God's plan for our lives.
Learn how to yield to the Holy Spirit. Allow Him to have more and more of you each day. Satisfy the yearning of this Divine Lover. Let the Holy Spirit love you! Let Him control you! Let Him exercise His authority in your life and flood you with His divine desire!
He is your every day Valentine!
Sunday, March 2, 2008
When I think about myself, I realize when I show signs of struggle and stress my ego has returned. The strength of our ego strengthens our sense of disconnection we have within our relationships with others. Here I find that ego and pride can be interchangeable!
When we are walking according to the grace God has bestowed upon us, we are inclusive to all people, not just toward people of like religion, race or political choice. The good works we do rate second to our spiritually wholeness. This spiritual wholeness I am speaking of is who we are in Christ. Christ within us produces the outward ways of living our faith!—or the action.
Without this inner growth, outward actions are worthless. We become what I refer to as "an empty suit". We look good, smell good and do good but are really empty--without Christ! Therefore, we remain dead. Any action done without our inner growth and the love of Christ just feeds our ego. (Hence, the firty years in the desert experience—around the mountain one more time!) This is the cycle of the ego—better known as pride, which I believe is the center of our old nature, our unsaved selves.
We can totally miss the point of our human existence and our purpose if we continue to allow the human condition of our mind and spirit to remain in conflict. Conflicts in our personal relationships are also caused by EGO. Fear, greed, and desire for power drives wedges between our relationships. These emotions are created by dysfunction or original sin. This sin is a stain on our spirit and also taints our minds. So how do we conquer these false characteristics? The Blood of Christ makes our spirit man right with God. It is then up to us to apply the Blood to our minds.
Trying to do good does not make us good—It is the awareness of the goodness within (Christ) and releasing that goodness (Christ love) that will change our conscious mind. What I am driving at is that once we are saved we must choose to wash our minds with the love and power of the Word!—Christ Himself and the written word. We must act on transforming our minds from the dysfunction we were been born into!
So do we agree that our state of mind has been in a form of dysfunction? Well, the good news is that Jesus saves and He brings light to not only our spirits but also our minds. He sets us free to choose. He breaks the chains of darkness over our minds and gives us the opportunity to let the light in. We are no longer held captive to sin. NOW we are free; we are liberated! AMEN.
In twelve step meetings they refer to "insanity of addiction" as the inessential driving to our over indulging just to satisfy a bottomless hole we crave to fill with our drug of choice (food, alcohol, chemical dependency, and chocolate). This vortex we have is derived from our dysfunction. (Sinning is missing the purpose of our existence)
The more we try to fill our empty hole with things (possessions, money, sickness attention, and deeds of kindness) the further away we become to having a relationship with our heavenly Father and to our true self. Our conscience becomes seared and we are lost in the black hole. The more we gratify ourselves with self-enhancement and materialistic desires; the more we build up our self-image with earthly possessions, and pump ourselves up with positions of status the least likely we will be able to find our true spiritual being.
We need a foundational shift from the worldly things to our spiritual being. We need to be awakened by the blood of Jesus! A fundamental spirit awakening to Jesus our Savior and an enlightening to a transformed walk by aligning ourselves with the Holy Spirit to shine upon the good that has already been placed within us so that we can grow from faith to faith and from glory to glory!
You might say church has the answer, the established religion if you will. I say NO! The answer is within you and your personal, secret relationship with your Lord, your God.
Religion has made God in its own image and likeness! There are people with the framework of religion who have experienced a shift in their consciousness. Their life has become dependent on the Holy Sprit's leading. They are the ones who bring life to such structured religions and through no fault of their own lead new believers in thinking that the structural church is their light and salvation. They may say the words, that the Lord is their Lord and Savior, yet point people to church functions, classes, teachings, and so forth to mature them instead of pointing them to the Word of God and setting an example of praying, listening, journaling, and living according to the Living Word of the Spirit.
My challenge for us today is to do away with, chip away, and let go of our identification with form, dogma, and ridged belief systems and discover the original depth of our being. It is hidden yet uncovered by the life, death, and resurrection of Jesus and the love of God our Father.
Realizing how 'spiritual' you are has nothing to do with your beliefs… but everything to do with your new state of consciousness—a changed mindset. This will determine how you will act in the world and it will also determine how you will interact with others.
LOVE is revealed, LOVE revives, and LOVE transforms our natural being as well as our spirit being.