Real Belief in a Really Noisy World
Oh, but it is noisy, the world and its opinions. How do we know what we even know what real belief is anymore?
During some intentional research for a proposal I am working on, the loudness got to me. By the time I closed my computer and shut my phone down for the day, my heart rate was outrageous, my throat was tight, and my head was pounding.
This was familiar.
Yes, this is how I used to roll.
Loved, protected, seen, heard, and known, and yet…
How do we stop the noise? And how do we experience all the fruits of the spirit when the arguments for and against are so stinking loud?
Here is what I want to offer, we need to understand where our thoughts begin and end. We need to bring the words of our mouth into alignment with the words of our hearts (subconscious.)
This is possible. Jesus said so. I believe Him.
And here is the thing about belief, it is just a practiced thought. So, when we say, “I believe God will help me,” and then think, “But what if He doesn’t? And what about the prosperity gospel? OH! And what about progressive Christianity? Ugh, what if???
The latter is the real belief.
What we resist persists. And what we practice we perfect.
We can spend hours combing the internet for answers. And there are billions of search results. I can tell you that worrying about the “prosperity” gospel, a modern cultural teaching, is not a Good News word. And yeah, I researched it.
Renowned prosperity theology was made a preachable thing by Kenneth Hagin, who beginning in 1974, taught 10,000 seminary students the principles over the next 20 years. Also, Kenny’s net worth is $17.5 million dollars.
And progressive, new thought, evangelical, non-denominational, third row from the back? All-new, English-speaking terms. Look into them and you have added data to your processor. Now, the subconscious has your back so it is processing what you are saying. Need extra funds? Okay, so you pray with your mouth, “I need extra funds…” However, what noise is going on in the background?
Now, your brain thinks you are asking for something that could land you in the bowels of hell. (It can’t, and anyone who tells you it can is judging you, which we could also call a no-no, but for the gift of Grace.)
This is where we take thoughts captive. THERE IS NO FEAR IN LOVE. And a worry-free existence takes about 7 seconds to claim.
Yep, you gotta wait. Waiting is the madness we cannot comprehend. Because, we rarely if ever, have to wait.
Well, waiting rooms, but you saw that coming.
So? Why wait?
Because, when it comes to a relationship with God, we have to be willing to wait.
For His Will right?
No, God’s will gets done. You don’t need to worry about Him. But you can wait, get still and breathe in and out to the count of slow seven.
Experience Him and KNOW His will for YOU.
Talking at Him is just one-sided words. While talking about Him, professing confusion, lack, or denying His love, or declarations of sinfulness, is the opposite of what He promised.
Talking about others, accusing them of being less, or needing more Jesus, is judgment. But it’s not the defendant that is being judged. The person who judges, judges only themselves. Yeah, that wasn’t a threat, it was the truth. You can only judge someone else after you have judged them more or less than you.
That sounds like an Eastern proverb. But actually, Jesus said it.
What else did He say? Oh yeah, You who are without sin, throw the first stone.
Still, I can’t help but wonder how many messages I will receive warning of my impending doom because I no longer subscribe to a cultural definition of my love for Him.
Taking thoughts captive and redirecting feelings, ones that feel good takes only seven seconds, while inhaling and exhaling deeply, on purpose. And then revisit the situation and your response.
In a flash, we can rage into a fury, which the mind perceives as life-threatening.
In this capacity, we are making decisions based on instinct instead of insight. When you have oxygenated the body, stress chemicals subside. Now then, ask yourself, LOVE or FEAR?
Every emotion stems from LOVE or FEAR. So if you are angry, what are you afraid of? Being wrong? Being challenged? If you’re involved in gossip about your neighbor, boss, or coworker, what scares you about that person? What emotion advances you from fear to love? Or, do you love gossip? Is your love of it the love of feeling superior?
And not every seven-second trigger is a stressful or potentially “sinful” situation.
Do you feel appreciation? What do you love that makes you feel that way?
What I have come to understand about faith and the mind is, our brain wants some proof before it is going to try water walking and fire dancing.
We can give it proof by intentionally FEELING the emotions of belief. What does belief feel like?
Knowing for sure.
And yeah, it feels really good to know for sure.
You can attach that feeling with words such as, “I feel really good when I know for sure. THANK YOU, Jesus!” I recommend you say these words into the mirror or record yourself on your phone. This is visual proof to the mind, she means it!
Or you could write or draw (or BOTH!) the mini-manifesto. Using the feelings of creativity, attach those good feelings to a statement. Say it and create it!
Sing it! Dance it! Graffiti it! (Please only on your own property or person.)
But whatever you do, please don’t deny yourself that which He came to bring you, life abundant. I think this is what haunts me, well, it used to. Now it just pops into my organized mind now and again.
Religion thinks for us. Relationship thinks with Him.
I am wholly convinced, what cultural deconstruction of religion is raging against, is the thoughts that were practiced for so long, they became beliefs, and are in direct contradiction to what Christ promised, freedom. A belief is only as good as its service to the believer. What good does it do to be afraid of blessings and financial stability? Who is ever harmed by listening, truly experiencing, and practicing that experience, to make the belief real?
Who is helped when we have practiced the thought, “that’s progressive theology!”
Are we that wobbly in our belief in the complete sacrifice of Christ?
Worse, do we KNOW that is what we have embraced as real belief? Or are we so bogged down with the World’s teachings, we have forgotten the entirety of Christ?
There’s even some more irony. Tribes of believers who are accusing progress of being worldly based on modern teachings on how not to be worldly in a world of progress, created by a God who created us to progress!
Personally, I just got tired of chasing my tail. It seems we just keep adding more to get closer to Him that is without beginning or end.
This is what I discovered at rock bottom, yes, completely stripped of everything I thought I knew as truth. If everything else were gone, there were no debates, no accusations, and nothing to read, watch, research, or invent, what is it I could FEEL about the Jesus I had followed unto my crumpled and weary self.
I took deep breaths in and out, seven of them. And I was flooded with all I needed to get up and get going again.
It is just Him.
He is enough.
And, He knew.
Oh goodness, that catches me in the gut. He knew we couldn’t do all the things, so He did the one that would set us free.
And, yet, we have declared Him wrong.
PASTOR LARRY SAID!
And I say Jesus said, “Love.” Jesus said, forgive. Don’t judge, lest you be judged. And His yoke is easy and His burden is light because He practiced the thoughts of the Son of God.
This was His real belief, and so great was His belief He experienced the freedom of Love without limits, love so powerful, it would wake the dead.
It is easy to be in Love. The air is fresher, the sky is bluer. Anticipation and expectation for the next encounter is darling. Feeling as though you are a dollar away from being a camel trying to stitch a hem is not a threat that Jesus made in the freedom that He taught.
Sure, you can argue, “Jesus said that about a rich man!” Yes, He did. And He said it to a group of non-believers in the New Covenant. What did He say to the thief on the cross?
“How much money did you make last year? Because if it was more than average, you can’t come into heaven Bruh.”
Nope, He told Him, “Today you will be with me in paradise.”
And yet, we celebrate theologies that threaten progress when He was the original progressor! Furthermore, we accuse those who aren’t practicing their faith the way they “should,” based on modern, cultural teachings. Which is ironic, because, isn’t that the progression we are accusing others of practicing?
Where is that dialogue even found? As Jesus wandered through the fields of grain on the SABBATH, He said, “The Sabbath was made for man, not man for the Sabbath.” (Mark 2:27 ) Also, the Sabbath was on Saturday, are you celebrating on Sunday? Wow, that’s progressive.
Oh, but I want this for everyone, WE ARE FREE.
And just past the gates of HAVE TO is the freedom of WANT TO. Pressed down, overflowing, entirely consumed with this God, we will meet with what we asked for, Earth as it is in Heaven. Which, by the way, is God’s Will made complete!
I confess I sat down just to make some notes. But I am not the same girl I was even a year ago. So I let the words flow, and didn’t argue with myself about algorithms or mean people. I love to write about this God. And I am obsessed with leaning in to experience Him as His daughter.
That is a different feeling.
Hmph. Must be love.
Jesus be all over you. Love, J
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