learning

Apprenticed In Love

The only One who knows how to love is God, and so we must be students, learners, apprentices - receiving from Him the love that only He can give.

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We Read Scripture to Get to Know the Author.

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Don’t limit your reading of Scripture to an intellectual exercise! 
It can be a dynamic exchange of life with your Father.

When we pick up our Bible, we hold in our hands a very precious commodity. The word 'Bible' itself is simply a translation from the Greek 'biblios', literally 'book'. The Book! The Book of all books to be sure. Inspired by God, men throughout history wrote down truths that God wanted us to know. Effectively, the Bible is the mind of God communicated to the mind of man.

The Bible reveals God to us through the Person and Work of Jesus. By observing Jesus in Scripture, we learn that God is our Father Who has adopted us into His forever family. I prefer to call the Bible “Father’s Word” because not only is it the mind of God to the mind of man, it is also the heart of God to the heart of man.

The Bible is written to each of us as if we were the only one on the planet. When you read it, imagine He's pulled you up onto his lap, and he's telling you the important things you desperately need to know... things about Himself, about ourselves, and the world we live in.

 In Philippians 3, Paul says he had learned that all the other wonderful things in this world are rubbish compared to knowing Him. I believe with all my heart that statement gives an important clue how we are to read Scripture. We are to read this book differently than we read other books. When we read the Bible, we read it to get to know the author.

Let me state it plainly. We have been trained to read books to learn what is in the book, but that is not how we are to read the Bible. Think back to when you were in school. You read a chapter in the history textbook - why? To learn what was in the book in order to score a good grade on the text. And after the test, you promptly forgot what you read as you plunged into reading the next chapter so you could take another test. And so it was for the Math book and the Science book and the Sociology book. 

Did you ever read the Math, Science, or Sociology book to get to know the author? Absolutely not! That was not the stated goal. The stated goal was to read the book to know what was in the book.

Put simply, we should be having a conversation with Father as we read, building and enjoying the relationship we share. As you read the Bible, I recommend you pray, thanking Father for what you've read and asking Him to explain it so you can understand it better. Though knowledge is important - Hosea says without it we are destroyed - the relationship we gain from that knowledge is far more important. God died, so that we could have a relationship with Him.

Don’t limit your reading of Scripture to an intellectual exercise! 
It can be a dynamic exchange of life with your Father.

I hope this insight inspires you to open the Bible more often and enjoy a wonderful conversation with the One Who loves you so much.

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Apprenticeship of Love

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When I think of being taught, I think of putting things into my mind so I can remember them... facts, figures, things I need to know so I can find my way and navigate safely in this crazy world.

Don't touch a hot stove, you will get burned. Though you think you can do it, don't jump off those last six steps of the staircase at age 59--- you understand this thing called "age" and your body is in no shape for that anymore.  And red lights? oh, yes that means stop or the camera sends you a ticket.

This is true in the spiritual realm as well, I need to get things into my mind.  Correct doctrine; truth... I don't want to walk according to lies so I need to be taught.

When it comes to love though, I have concluded that love is something that cannot be taught by way of the mind.  Let me explain...

In I Thess 4:9 it says that we are "taught of God to love". This fascinating word in the Greek appears only 1x in the New Testament - "theodidaktos", which means "God taught". The word literally means apprenticed, which is a much different style of learning. An apprentice is someone who learns "hands on" as they are guided by the instructor.

As human beings, we do not know what love really is because after all, God is love. The only one that really knows how to love is God, and so we must be students, learners, receiving from Him the love that only He can give. Then by faith, we express that love through our own lives to others as we are "apprenticed/schooled" in this thing that we must master in order to effect the lives of others. 

When it comes to love, real love and not the manipulative, selfish, controlling thing that most of us are used to, I find that I am probably in junior high, or just maybe the latter years of elementary school. BUT I AM IN THIS SCHOOL and I am learning to love as God is "apprenticing" me.  I have come a long way but am not yet a tradesman in this very rare art. In fact, I do not believe there are many "tradesmen" in this area of love because it takes so long to learn and is so contrary to this world in which we live.

Join me, won't you in this apprenticeship of love?  It is how Jesus said we would turn this world upside down.

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Who's Your Master?

Living in an economy NOT OF PERFORMING, but an economy of receiving all that God is to all that I need at the moment of faith!

Living in an economy NOT OF PERFORMING, but an economy of receiving all that God is to all that I need at the moment of faith!

One of the great dangers of our humanity is that when we enter into communication with each other, we do so with "filters".  We say what we don't mean to say, we hear what we want to hear, we don't hear what was said because we filter what we are about to hear through our own thought processes and circumstances and experiences....

sooooo...
Sometimes we need to really work at what we are trying to say and work to hear what others are saying to us.  Sometimes we need to say things differently so people will hear us, and sometimes we need to hear things said differently in order to really have true communication. Does that make sense? That is true even with the Scriptures Father has given to us.

Case in point: Rom 6:14
"sin will not be your master because you are not under law,
but under grace!"

I hear that and it is clear. But when I hear it stated another way, it really confirms what I hear and enables me to appropriate it. Let's state the above truth from a negative perspective and see if that helps us...

"if you are NOT UNDER GRACE, 
SIN WILL BE YOUR MASTER!"

To hear it said differently helps me. Did it help you? If I am not "under grace" but instead, if I am under self-discipline, if I am under principles, if I am under striving, if I am under the expectations of myself or others, SIN WILL BE MY MASTER!

The only way I can truly be free of sin as my master is to be "under grace".  Living in an economy NOT OF PERFORMING, but an economy of receiving all that God is to all that I need at the moment of faith!

That is the only way to really deal with sin. You see my friends, too often the attack hurled against us as the people of grace is that we are "light on sin". Did you see what we said above? Did you hear it with the eyes of your spirit led understanding? The attack that is levelled against us is wrong!

The only true way to deal with sin is to live under grace! 

I hear what Father is saying.... do you?

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Father's Word

My Father wants to talk to me, to guide me, to share His   heart   with   me, Father to son, God to man, Lover to beloved.

My Father wants to talk to me, to guide me, to share His heart with me, Father to son, God to man, Lover to beloved.

Some call it the "Bible". The word is simply a transliteration of the Greek word "biblos," which means book. Others call it the "Scriptures," a word that means sacred writings. I prefer to call it "Father's Word". I like that.

My Father wants to talk to me, to guide me, to share His heart with me,
Father to son, God to man, Lover to beloved. 
Father's Word.

The supreme purpose behind Father's word to me is to lead me to an intimate dependence and experience with "His Word" the Lord Jesus Christ, by and through the presence of the Spirit of Christ, the Holy Spirit dwelling in me.

I love Father's word for leading me to the Living Word - Jesus. I fear though, that there are some these days who in their finding the "Living Word - Jesus", are neglecting Father's word - the Bible - that was written for us, to us, to lead us to the "Living Word - Jesus"

I fear sometimes that we become so smart, that we fail to remain teachable and humble and students of Father's word so we can know the Living Word - Jesus.

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Teaching vs Training

Just like a little kid learns by looking into the eyes and life of its Father, so that is how we learn.

Just like a little kid learns by looking into the eyes and life of its Father, so that is how we learn.

Ah, the wonderful grace of God. How can we learn of it?

Not the usual way, that is for sure. In Titus 2, we are told that the grace of God has appeared bringing us salvation. First, we must embrace that grace therefore, is not a doctrine, nor a formula, a message, or a teaching.

Grace is a Person because Jesus is the One Who brought us salvation.

The next verse says it is this grace (this Person) Who teaches us, to deny ungodliness and live righteously. "Teaches" is our key word in answering the question of how we learn of grace.

The normal word for teach is "didaskalos", which refers to formal, classroom type of instruction. Not the word used here. You will never learn how to live out of grace in a classroom or a book.

The word used here is from "pais" --- or little child. Little children are concrete learners, not abstract learners. Their learning is more caught than taught. The word should really be translated "training".

Do you see the word picture? Just like a little kid learns by looking into the eyes and life of its Father, so that is how we learn. As we look into Jesus's eyes, we are allowed to see His eyes that are to us and for us. I would put it this way, the teacher talks at us, but the trainer (the Person of Grace) walks with us.

May I illustrate it? One father may tell his child to do a particular chore. That is "didaskalos" - teaching. Another father does that chore with the son. That is "pais" - training. That is Grace.   That is Jesus.

We learn of the grace of God by fixing our eyes on Him, so that He may walk with us and show us how to live. His LIFE is so much more caught than taught.

Be a little kid, fix your eyes on Him, and let Him walk with you.

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