grace

How To Live A Radical New Life

Can you relate to the cycle of trying and then failing, only to try harder again and fail worse than before? In today's short video, Frank reminds us that God doesn’t require us to meet a certain code of conduct through our own resources. Our gracious Father dwells in us and because of Him we can live differently!


Each week, Pastor Frank sends several short, encouraging videos to his circle of friends.
Interested in joining? Signing up is easy:
Get on the list here.

What Legacy Are You Leaving?

We know that David was a man after God’s own heart, but how did David get that beautiful heart we hear so much about? In today’s short video, Frank answers that question, and reminds us that only hearts that have been truly touched by grace can pass grace on to others.


Each week, Pastor Frank sends several short, encouraging videos to his circle of friends.
Interested in joining? Signing up is easy:
Get on the list here.

What Legacy Are You Leaving?

What Legacy Are You Leaving_--.jpeg

Heritage. Legacy. Ponder those words.

Where did King David, beloved King of Israel, author of the Psalms, a man after God’s own heart get his amazing heart?

Let’s start tracing back. Let’s look at where he came from. One of his ancestors was a woman named Ruth. Who was she? She was a Moabitess from a far country, one that was at war with Israel. A woman who, according to Deuteronomy wasn’t even allowed in the assembly of God. In the Book of Ruth Boaz took her as his wife and she was no longer a Moabitess. And where did Boaz get his heart? Well if you trace it back, his daddy was a man named Samon and he loved Rahab the prostitute. Do you begin to get the idea? All these people were touched by grace.

Hearts that have been touched by grace are the only ones that can pass on grace. I believe with all my heart that that’s what made David a man after God’s own heart. He wasn’t born with it. I believe he learned it from others, people who passed it down to him, a man who could unconditionally love a prostitute and a man who could unconditionally love a Moabitess.

It makes you start wondering, what are your kids are learning from you and your heart?

----------------------------
Each week, Pastor Frank sends several short, encouraging videos to his circle of friends.
Interested in joining? Signing up is easy:
Get on the list here.

The Only Thing to do When You're Feeling Overwhelmed

When our eyes are on our circumstances we quickly lose sight of God. We become overwhelmed as we try to make sense of things, forgetting that there is only one thing God has called us to do. In today’s short video, Frank reminds us that it is our Father who will be our strength as He leads us through the darkness.  


Each week, Pastor Frank sends several short, encouraging videos to his circle of friends.
Interested in joining? Signing up is easy:
Get on the list here.

The Only Thing To Do When You’re Feeling Overwhelmed

The Only Thing To Do When You’re Feeling Overwhelmed   .jpeg

Adversity. I don’t like that word, nor any of its synonyms—distress, hardship, struggle, conflict. All those kinds of things can loom very large in our lives. Let’s be honest, when they do, it’s so easy for you and I to fix our eyes on them and not see God. Then God becomes very small in our lives. Sometimes I feel like the disciples when Jesus said to them “Oh you of little faith!” I’m not sharing with you something that I don’t struggle with. Those looming things that pop into our lives can seem so big. What can we do?

Well, I’m always looking for stories of how other people have trusted God. I think of Asaph in Psalm 73. He went horizontal in life and life seemed so harsh. He went vertical and he saw the true reality of life. He saw the world through heaven’s eyes.

Recently I came across the story of the Boxer Rebellion in China. Hudson Taylor was the founder of the China Inland Mission during the Boxer Rebellion and the saints were suffering very badly at this time. So Hudson Taylor, who was now in his late seventies, gathered them together and this is what he said,I cannot see. I cannot think, I cannot even pray.” Have you ever been there? When life seems so overwhelming, you can’t think straight. You can’t see the light in the midst of the darkness and you’re so overwhelmed that you cannot pray. But Hudson Taylor wasn’t done. Listen to all of what he said. “I cannot see. I cannot think, I cannot even pray, but I can trust.” My heart was warmed by those words.

You see, God doesn’t call us to understand why things are happening. God doesn’t call us to muster up our strength and tread through the darkness. He calls us to trust Him that He will be our strength and He will be our guide and He will lead us through the path of darkness into the light of His glorious grace and love.

I hope that encourages your day and bless you in Jesus’ name.


----------------------------
Each week, Pastor Frank sends several short, encouraging videos to his circle of friends.
Interested in joining? Signing up is easy:
Get on the list here.

The Labor of Rest

photo-1472162314594-eca3c3d90df1.jpg

One of the charges frequently brought against me and others who teach the message of grace is that we teach "easy believe-ism” or “cheap grace.” I would like to address those thoughts.

First, let's talk about the thought of "easy believe-ism." When we teach the grace of God, we are heralding to humanity that there is a new economy of living made available through the finished work of Jesus. Yes, it is an "easy" economy to enter. I do not shy away from proclaiming that. If God wants people saved, and He does, why would He make it difficult?

I love that in the third chapter of John when Jesus heralds that eternal life is available through Him, He refers to the little brass serpent that was recorded in the book of Numbers. Remember the story? God sent serpents to deal with the rebellious children of Israel, but He also instructed Moses to make a little brass serpent and put it up on a pole as a remedy for anyone who got bit by the serpents. All they had to do if they got bit, was take a glance of faith to the serpent and they would be healed. Isn’t that glorious?! All it took was a glance of faith, and that is indeed all that God requires for someone to enter life. Glorious!

Living that life, however, is a different story; it requires saying a loud and resounding “No!” to our resources, so that we can instead trust the resources of God and that is no EASY thing to do! It requires hard work, as the writer of Hebrews says, to enter into rest. It is hard work to trust God’s resources instead of our own, especially since all of us were birthed into the lie that we shall be as God and therefore inherently think that we can do just fine apart from Him. So yes, it is easy to believe and find life with God, but it is hard work to experience life with God. We must labor to enter into the rest that Jesus has secured for us.

Oh, and by the way, how did He secure that rest for us? He laid down His life on our behalf. He died so that we could be set free from the law and restored to God instead, and there is nothing cheap about the grace that He secured for us. In fact, if you really understand the economy of grace, how dare anyone call it cheap! It cost Jesus His life, and it requires on our part the laying down of our lives in order for us to find His life.

----------------------------
Each week, Pastor Frank sends several short, encouraging videos to his circle of friends.
Interested in joining? Signing up is easy:
Get on the list here.

The Bridge

tumblr_o9kl65JLnh1v4yqceo1_1280.jpg

You know, Pilate asked a question, “What shall I do with Jesus?” The crowds said, crucify Him. Jesus asks that same question of each of us today; What will you do with Jesus? 

I often use this illustration when I'm sharing Christ with someone in my office or on the street; picture a great big, extremely wide river. Let's go down to that river and make a good effort at jumping over it. How far are you going to go, six feet? Eight feet? I'm an ex-athlete, with the emphasis on "x," so I might go ten feet. Does it earn me bragging rights that I jumped ten feet but you only jumped six? No! Why? Because we're both soaking wet, floating down the river! There is no way that we're ever going to be able to jump across that river. There's only one way across, and that's if someone builds a bridge. It's the same way with our relationship with God. Adam plunged us all into sin, and we're now separated from God just like that great big, extremely wide river separates one side of land from the other. We can try all we want with all of our good works to try and get to that other side, but that big old river of sin hinders us and the only way we're ever going to make it across is if someone builds a bridge and that's what Jesus Christ came to do. He came to build that bridge for anyone who will make that choice when the question is asked, what shall I do with Jesus? 

If you're reading this today and haven't made that choice, I pray you would because this is a choice with the greatest consequence you will ever have. To choose Jesus is to have life eternal with Him; forgiveness of sins and to be put into union with God and enjoy Him forever. What a marvellous, marvellous consequence! To not choose Jesus is to choose death, and why would anyone want to choose that?

----------------------------
Each month, Pastor Frank writes a personal letter to a circle of his friends, much like the blog post you just read. If you'd like to receive it, signing up is easy:

Get on the list here.

The Life We Need

tumblr_oblzj6TspY1teue7jo1_1280.jpg

One of the misconceptions that I am finding among people who hear us teach grace is that we are against the Law. Nothing could be further from the truth. As true believers, we, like David, love the Law because it comes with a glorious God-given purpose. What is that purpose? Well, it is two-fold.

The first purpose of the Law is found in 2 Corinthians 3:5-9. There we learn that the Law has a purpose, and that is to kill and condemn us. Isn’t that wonderful? In fact, it is even called a “ministry of death and condemnation.” Now, why would God give us a Law that would kill and condemn us? The answer, of course, is to kill and condemn us.

Remember that we as human beings were all birthed under the lie that we shall be as God. Every one of us born on this planet is a god-wannabe. God gave us the Law, which is holy, perfect, and good (Romans 7:12) to keep us from a false hope that one day we just might be able to be like God. The Law came with a demand on our lives but provided no power for us to fulfill that demand. Alas! We are left to our own resources to try and keep the Law, and there is not one of us in and of ourselves who will ever be able to do that – hence the Law kills and condemns us. It pronounces every one of us guilty as sinners before God.

An old proverb went something like this, “Run John, run, the law  demands. But gives him neither feet nor hands.” So the first purpose of the Law is to provide us with a great need for Life, as we are all pronounced dead and condemned by the Law. Wonderful!

The second purpose of the Law is then to lead us to Jesus (Galatians 3:24) because He has the market cornered on Life. He who has the Son has the Life says the New Testament. In John 10, Jesus affirms this when He told the disciples that He came for the express purpose of giving us Life, an abundant Life because the Life He was giving to us was His own Life. Incredible! We have been given the Life of God for us to experience and express, and this wonderful Life came to us because the Law first affirmed our death and then led us to the only true source of Life. Wonderful indeed!

The rest of that proverb goes as follows, “But grace an even greater brings, it bids us fly and gives us wings." The truth is that we would never have found the Life we need without the Law first affirming our need for Life. I love the Law, don’t you? It was the tool that brought us to Jesus.

----------------------------
Each month, Pastor Frank writes a personal letter to a circle of his friends, much like the blog post you just read. If you'd like to receive it, signing up is easy:

Get on the list here.

Living From God

beautiful-sunset-over-hills_free_stock_photos_picjumbo_VH_0318-2210x1473.jpg

Listen to this verse; it is one of the most neglected verses in the New Testament in my opinion. “For through the Law, I died to the Law, that I might live unto God!” (Galatians 2:19).

Did you hear that? One of the purposes of the Law was to lead us to Jesus (Galatians 3:24). By virtue of our union with Him, we would be crucified with Him (Romans 6:3-5; Galatians 2:20) so that our relationship with the Law could end and we could instead be married to Jesus (Romans 7:4).

The verse goes on to tell us that this all occurred so that we might live unto God, meaning that until we die to the Law, we really cannot live unto God! Did you hear that? The Law was the very means that ended our relationship to the Law. You really can’t make it any more clear than that! That is why in 1 Timothy 1:9 it tells us that “the Law was not made for a righteous man.” Now that we have been made the righteousness of God in Christ (2 Corinthians 5:21), the Law no longer is to be a functioning agent in our lives. We have something far better to lead us, and that is the Holy Spirit Himself. That makes great sense, doesn’t it? The only way to truly live unto God is to learn to live from God!

----------------------------
Each month, Pastor Frank writes a personal letter to a circle of his friends, much like the blog post you just read. If you'd like to receive it, signing up is easy:

Get on the list here.

Being Right vs Being Loving

Freedom is promised when we know and walk in God’s truth. But how will others share in this same freedom if we neglect to tell them what we know to be right and correct them when they’re wrong? Find out in this short video what we need to be right about as Frank shares how we can love one another even when we disagree and what evidence should be seen in our lives as we walk in the truth of the Grace of God.

----------------------------
Each month, Pastor Frank writes a personal letter to a circle of his friends, much like the blog post you just read. If you'd like to receive it, signing up is easy:

Get on the list here.

Sin Isn't Your Master

 If I am not "under grace"... but instead look to self-discipline, or principles, or effort, or meeting expectations of myself or others, SIN WILL BE MY MASTER!

----------------------------
Each month, Pastor Frank writes a personal letter to a circle of his friends, much like the blog post you just read. If you'd like to receive it, signing up is easy:

Get on the list here.

Sin Isn't The Supreme Issue

When Adam sinned, God's heart was grieved - of course it was! What grieved His heart most is what man would have to experience fear, grief, sorrow, anxiety, guilt, shame, and isolation as a result.

----------------------------
Each month, Pastor Frank writes a personal letter to a circle of his friends, much like the blog post you just read. If you'd like to receive it, signing up is easy:

Get on the list here.

I'm a Former Legalist. And so Are You.

gavel-on-law-book_925x.jpg

We are all former legalists... Rom 5 says "the whole world is shut up under the law."

I've been seeing something happening lately that I'd like to talk about.

Mainly, I'm noticing that as some people find freedom and life in the grace of God, they become very cynical and mean to the 'legalists' or 'religionists'. I'm noticing such people almost boasting how they cannot stand such people or their teaching. That they cannot even bear to listen to such teaching, that they would rather not go to church at all rather than sit under such teaching.

Isn't that amazing, when religious and legalistic is exactly what we used to be before finding the New Covenant? Why are we not going back into the legalistic cesspool we came out of to rescue those who are still stuck in there?

Though I understand the zeal, I do not understand the lack of compassion. Jesus, though rejected by the legalistic world never stopped presenting Himself to them, and no Pharisee was ever afraid to go into His presence. How are we going to win the legalistic world if we do not spend time with them?

 We should be so secure in our position, that we can sit under any teaching without it "making us sick." We must remember that many of these dear people who are legalists, do in fact name Jesus as their Lord and Savior, making them our brothers and sisters in Christ. They may be misguided. They may be no small source of discomfort for those of us who are free.

We should be so free that we can sit under their teaching and not have it ruin our day. Paul said, "I become all things to all men that I may win some." The grace of God was never intended to make us isolate and insulate ourselves from the world of religious men and women. That is what the Jews did and in doing so they failed to reach the world with the light that they had been given.

We who secure in our true identity and grounded in our freedom should be able to live in the camp of the religious without their dogma and behavior causing us unrest.

Now that, my friend, is true freedom.

----------------------------
Each month, Pastor Frank writes a personal letter to a circle of his friends, much like the blog post you just read. If you'd like to receive it, signing up is easy:

Get on the list here.

Always Be A Vessel

vessel.jpg

Hello, my friends!

Always be gracious... ALWAYS be a vessel of His grace! But also ALWAYS remember that we are guardians of a sacred responsibility - "Preach the Word; be diligent in season, out of season; reprove, rebuke, exhort with all long-suffering and doctrine."

----------------------------
Enjoy this blog post?

If so, you'll probably really like Frank's monthly emails.
Get on the list here.

What Is Grace?

help.jpg

GRACE! GRACE! GRACE! 

That is all I hear and I am so glad I hear it from Father's Word. "Grace upon grace" - it says in Jn 1. "The abundance of grace" - it says in Rom 5. LOVE IT! LOVE IT! LOVE IT!

May I suggest though that it is only truly wonderful when it is properly understood and applied? When perverted, it no longer remains grace --- even though people continue to call it grace.

First: What grace is not!  Grace is not the freedom to do whatever you want. Paul spoke about this in Galatians 5. He tells us we are not to use our freedom to serve our flesh. This is exactly what happens when a person doesn’t understand that the LIFE they received in Christ is ‘others-centered’.

It’s a LIFE that seeks to serve, instead of being served.
It’s a Life that looks to the interests of others, not its own interest. 

When we fail to realize and live out the others-centered life of Jesus, the inevitable end result is ugly: grace used for selfish gain.

So what is grace? May I venture a definition?

Grace is being delivered from an economy of being IN ADAM, which is an economy of achieving for self; and being placed instead into an economy of receiving IN CHRIST, all that He is, to all that we need, at the moment of faith.

Grace is NOT a doctrine, nor a teaching. Grace is the Person of Jesus offering to express His life in and through a person as they trust Him by faith to do so. That Christ-life is then both experienced by the individual and expressed to others in a spirit of love, acceptance, awe, and wonder as we live out our having become partakers of the divine nature.

And may I add that this Grace, Jesus, living in and through us, fulfills the RIGHTEOUSNESS OF THE LAW in our lives.  We live righteously because it is the only kind of life the Spirit knows how to live (Rom 8:1-4).

Thank you, Jesus, for your grace. (wonderfully redundant, huh?)
Thank you, Jesus, for giving me your LIFE which saves me from me (Rom 5:8-10).

----------------------------
Enjoy this blog post?

If so, you'll probably really like Frank's monthly emails.
Get on the list here.

Jesus Did Not Atone For Our Sins

sheep.jpg

One of the biggest mistakes people make is that they view the Bible as a cohesive whole. I will explain. Though it is one book, written by one supreme author, the Holy Spirit, and it does have one central theme, the fall and restoration of man, it is one book made up of two books. There is an Old Covenant and there is a New Covenant.

The Old Covenant focuses on the law, and the emphasis is on what man must do. The goal, of course, is to reveal to man that he cannot do as he needs to do and transform his thinking from the lie that he can be like God so that he instead will cry out in his need for God to save him and make him whole again.

The New Covenant emphasis is on grace, with the glory that man receives instead of achieves and the focus is on what God has done and longs to do in and through man as man now chooses to live by faith.  I would be so bold as to say that people are NEVER going to understand the Bible until they realize that God works in covenants.

There was an Old and it is distinct from the New, and the two should NEVER be mixed. When we mix the law with grace, the law loses its holy terror, and grace loses its freeing power! They are separate and distinct and must be kept so when we translate and interpret the Bible. 

The reason I state this, is that I hear a lot of people who fail to make this distinction of books or covenants within the one book, and interchange the terms of the old covenant with the new. For example - take the word "atonement" - so many Christians use that term to refer to the death of Christ for our sins and this is NOT the word to use when we herald the glory of what Jesus has done for us! JESUS DID NOT ATONE FOR OUR SINS! Atonement is an Old Covenant word. The Hebrew word is kopher and it means to cover. In the Old Covenant the sacrifice of lambs "covered" the sins of the people when those lambs were offered in faith that God would "cover" their sins. The book of Hebrews tells us though, that those lambs could never remove people's sins. They were only "covered" until the real Lamb of God could come and remove those sins from them.

Let me state it simply, that word "cover" or atonement is NOT to be
used of Jesus because He did something much better than "cover" our sins,
HE REMOVED THEM!

Remember the glory of the statement that John the Baptist made, "Behold the Lamb of God Who takes away the sins of the earth!" Now, that is glorious and it is a major error to say that Jesus atoned for our sins - HE DID NO SUCH THING! HE REMOVED THEM --- Hallelujah!

Unfortunately, many translations put that Old Covenant word into the New Testament. PLEASE hear me on this. That word "atonement" is never used in the New Testament, It is only found in the Old Testament. The word used in the New Testament is katalaggo, the root meaning of which is to reconcile. Jesus reconciled us to God by removing our sins, not covering our sins. Why the New Testament translators put the Old Covenant word into their New Testament translations I do not know, but they should not have done so because they are robbing Jesus of the fulness of the glory of what He did for us at the cross! 

Take great care my friends to interpret the Bible in light of the two covenants. The glory of the New Covenant will shine brighter in your heart and mind. Better yet, the glory of our Lord Jesus Who established that covenant, will shine even brighter in your hearts, ushering in greater praise to Him for the greater work that He has accomplished, and you will walk confidently, KNOWING that your sins are forgiven completely and you do not have to worry that you are ever out of fellowship with God! IT IS FINISHED! That is what Jesus said on the cross. And do you know what that means in Greek? It means, "IT IS FINISHED!"

Isn't that exciting? 

----------------------------
Enjoy this blog post?

If so, you'll probably really like Frank's monthly emails.
Get on the list here.

A Very Real Word of Encouragement

So yes, as the ancient writers encouraged, "Be strong!"  That, however, is not really much of an encouragement.

So yes, as the ancient writers encouraged, "Be strong!"  That, however, is not really much of an encouragement.

In most ancient letters that we hold in our possession, the standard "good-bye" was erroso meaning "be strong." 

That was obviously intended by the writers of those letters to be an encouragement to their recipients. It is also though, a commentary on the world we live in. We need to be encouraged to be strong because this is a dark and scary world. We need strength to navigate our way through its savage twists and turns that it all too often brings our way. So yes, as the ancient writers encouraged, "Be strong!"

That, however, is not really much of an encouragement. At least, not to an honest man or woman who has encountered just how treacherous this world can be.

Why? Because the trials of life teach us that we are not really all that strong.

It is like we are on battery power and the demands of life all too easily burn out our batteries. I believe most of us use the time in between difficulties as a means of providing us with a way to somewhat re-charge our batteries for the next round of difficulty we are going to have to face.

The ancient New Testament letters, however, did away with the word erroso as a standard means of saying goodbye. They chose to use instead the word charis meaning grace. Now that is a glorious and very real word of encouragement. Grace is the offering to us, of the very Person of God. It is the new economy established by Jesus in the New Covenant, that God is no longer distant and unreachable, but actually, lives inside all of us who have placed our faith in Him.

Grace means that at the moment of faith, God will be all that He is, to all that we need. Because of grace, we no longer have to navigate through this dark and desperate world by ourselves and with our own resources. Wherever we go, God goes with us. Whatever we endure, He is right there offering His strength for us to stand victorious in the midst of the dark days that a fallen world can bring to us.

I bid you, His grace!

----------------------------
Enjoy this blog post?

If so, you'll probably really like Frank's monthly emails.
Get on the list here.

Grace is Jesus

waterfall.jpg

Grace is not a word we define.
Grace is not a doctrine we agree with.
Grace is a Person we are to experience.
Grace is Jesus (Tit 2:11-12). 

Therefore, Grace is NOT the freedom to do whatever we want, but the freedom to be who we are --- containers of God who have the privilege of God expressing Himself through our humanity as we trust Him by faith.

----------------------------
Enjoy this blog post?

If so, you'll probably really like Frank's monthly emails.
Get on the list here.

"Competitive Spirit"

Living by codes, therefore, breeds a spirit of competition and whenever there is competition, there will be the desire to win and not lose.

Living by codes, therefore, breeds a spirit of competition and whenever there is competition, there will be the desire to win and not lose.

"RELIGIOUS PEOPLE" are very often "mean people"... Please understand, it is because they have to be. 

Whenever you have people living by a code that they cannot keep there will be in those people a sense of failure. This, in turn, will breed the need to look at others to see if they can do it better than others, and thus feel better about themselves. Living by codes, therefore, breeds a spirit of competition and whenever there is competition, there will be the desire to win and not lose. Such a one will then naturally compare themselves to others with the accompanying necessity to put the other down and exalt themselves.

We see this "competitive spirit" in Luke 18 when the pharisee exalted himself and all the good that he had done over and against the "sinner" and all the evil that he had done. Even a cursory reading reveals the ugliness of this religious and competitive spirit.

This is why grace is such an incredible necessity for the body of Christ to live in harmony. Grace puts every believer on the same playing field. Grace removes the competitive spirit because it also removes the code by which we seek to exalt ourselves at the expense of others. Grace, when it is really understood and appropriated can only lead to the exaltation of one individual --- the person of grace ---Lord Jesus Christ.

ALL OTHERS are humbled in the presence of grace. 

Sadly, there are people who are making "grace" the new law, using grace as a new standard by which to measure others and put them down for their lack of understanding and as a tool to exalt themselves for their enlightened understanding. Such "grace" is no grace at all but the spirit of religion and competition wrapped up in the glory of grace, which in fact distorts and corrupts grace so that it is no longer really grace at all. This is religion of the worst kind...and it too is mean!

The real test of whether it is grace we are proclaiming is that Jesus will be exalted and we ourselves humbled by the glory of real grace. If a man or woman is really walking in true grace, mercy and compassion will flow from their lips and lives and others will always feel safe around them, even those who disagree with them. 

Have you ever noticed that even the enemies of Jesus felt safe approaching Him? 

Do you want to know if you are walking in real grace? Ask those around you if they feel safe in your presence.  If they can relax around you.  If they can let their hair down and just be themselves in your presence. Ask them if they feel like they have to guard their words and actions around you, and give them the freedom to answer honestly.

Rich Mullins wrote these words longing to see the glory of the kingdom in the people of God:

"I see a people, who have learned to walk in faith,
with mercy in their hearts and glory on their faces..."

I too long for the day to see the body of Christ expressing such glory ---
When the mercy of God flows freely from the lips and lives of the saints of God.

MAY WE BE A GRACIOUS AND MERCIFUL PEOPLE!

----------------------------
Enjoy this blog post?

If so, you'll probably really like Frank's monthly emails.
Get on the list here.