what i’m learning at the fire hydrant

fire hydrantI had no idea what it would really be like, this year devoted to going deeper with God. They tried to warn me. They told me the discipleship training school would be like trying to drink from a gushing fire hydrant.  But, I’ve never tried to take a drink like that, so it was like trying to explain childbirth to a woman pregnant with her first child. All it really ends up doing is scaring the stuffing out of her, because childbirth has to be experienced, not explained.  This can also be applied to drinking from a fire hydrant.

But now I know.  The gushing water is overwhelming, and you miss a lot of what is pouring out. But what you are able to drink in is glorious. What you drink in brings the revelation that you were dying of thirst.  What you drink in makes you abandon trying to catch water in your hands and compels you to go in face first. Yeah…it’s that good.

I love words, but even I don’t have enough of them to try to explain all that God has been teaching me and doing in me.  On top of the training school, I just spent a week receiving training in the core values of my church; teachings I would have paid money to receive at a conference. Yeah…they were that good.

So, I will try to pour out drops of what is being poured into me. Drops, in the form of direct quotes from some of the teachings, along with my own quotes, written in flurries into my journal during the sessions.

 

“If we lower the bar so that we can live up to it, we miss the whole point, which is total dependence on God. God never lowers the bar.”

 

Instead of “what do I do?”…it needs to be “what do I believe?”. We behave what we believe.

 

“The capacity to perform the things of the Kingdom is directly tied to the depth of our intimacy with Jesus, not with the breadth of our knowledge.” 

 

“We will never get to the end of ‘in Christ’.”

 

“Insecurity produces dominance.”

 

“We can preserve our physical virginity, but prostitute our hearts.”

 

“The ulterior motive of God is to bless you, not to use you.”

 

I didn’t ‘find‘ Jesus. I ran from Him and He pursued me and caught me.

 

“I refuse to allow the praises of men or the revilings of men to deter me from the will of God.” 

 

“Are you deaf enough to the opinions of man, to fulfill the call of God on your life?”

 

“The most deceptive people in the world are deceived people who think they are speaking truth.”

 

I was made a sinner without sinning, and I was made righteous without being right.

 

“Judgement came after only one sin. Grace came after many sins. Which is stronger?”

 

“Do not make assumptions. They make bad theology.”

 

Brokenness…a condition of the heart that is becoming aware of its utter and complete need for God alone.

 

“When you [walk in] sin, something dies, and you don’t get to choose what dies.”

 

Brokenness is a lifestyle, not an event.

 

Will I fall on the Rock, or let the Rock fall on me?

Rock

 

I don’t want to miss the point of a position of authority.  It is not about me, it is about raising others up.

 

Underleaders:  Are passive. Only do what is asked of them.   Overleaders: Aggressive. Do too much. Usually start out prideful.  Both are marked by insecurity. Collaborative leaders:  Humility dominates. They come with a vision. They ask “what do you think?”.

Pride will cause me to fight for my gifting.

 

I am an ambassador. I represent God everywhere I go.

 

            The Kingdom cannot come without the Gospel.

 

                      The Kingdom coming means hearts are transformed. A Kingdom means there is a King.

 

                                    “There are greater places in God than we have ever been.”

 

Fire will come upon my works. Only those done for Jesus will survive. Am I doing things to feel better about me? To gain a position? To promote me or my gifting? Motive matters!

 

“We will not be fascinated with the gifts, but fascinated with Jesus.”

 

“It is more about reliance on Him than development in me.”

 

For every “yes” you give to God, you give 1,000 “no’s” to the world.

 

“Life is at work in places because death is at work somewhere [in us].”

 

“None of us has the capacity to be the full revelation of God.”

 

captive

“Living in bondage will cause us to forget our identity, and God’s identity.”

 

We cannot filter our beliefs through experience. 

 

We cannot separate the voice of God from the Word of God. The more we are grounded in His Word, the more we will hear His voice.

 

If what drives us is the need to be somebody, we will not complete the call of God. It can’t be about us having a cause or a mission…it must be about God getting glory and people getting His salvation. It has to be about Him and Them.

 

I cannot confuse identity and mission. If I do, then when I fail (and I will), it will shake me. I will determine that my ministry success is my worth. And, I will reject what God speaks if it does not line up with what I believe to be my calling, ministry, gifting, etc. 

 

“God, what is the next step of obedience for me?”

 

Fulfilling the great commission means putting a burden for others above my need for identity.

 

I can’t look at God’s mission through the very narrow lens of my part in it. I have to look at the whole mission, and then ask for my part.

 

I don’t need to hear, “well done, good and powerful servant”, or “well done, good and perfect servant”. Just let me be found faithful!

 

“What is God’s will for my life?” needs to be “what is God’s will?”.

 

Do I see what I have as mine, or as God’s?

 

“Any dingbat can be a problem finder. Leaders find solutions.”

 

Indicators of where my treasure is:  what I spend my time on; what I talk about; what I am unwilling to give up; how I live my life.

 

Do not despise even the smallest provision.

 

I need to grow deep enough in God to handle not getting what I want when I want it.

 

They’re just drops of water. Scribbles from the journal of a thirsty woman who has found herself, by the grace and goodness of God, positioned in front of a fire hydrant.  There is more, so much more, that I haven’t dripped out here.

Next weekend, we will go on our Fall Outreach, where we will share the gospel in Norman, Oklahoma, with our church plant there. In the spring, we will go on an international outreach to a location still unknown.

In between those two events, I will be found face first at the fire hydrant.

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