Thursday, December 15, 2011


Of late I have been compelled to put my words into poetic form.  Here are a few of my latest poems archived at

Army Arising

The Shift

The Promise 


A Great Hope


Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Experiencing Heaven

Life lived by the Spirit is an incredible journey full of adventure and intrigue. When you exercise your spirit to connect to His Spirit to hear by spirit or see by spirit or know by spirit you open a whole new world of knowledge. This knowledge takes deep root in one’s soul and the spirit renews the mind to new understanding and paradigms of thinking that produce creative freedom. 

Often times we do not know we are bound until we are unbound. We don’t know we cannot see well until someone offers to clean the lenses of our glasses for us. I was once strolling through a mall with my sister when she saw the jewelry store chain from which her wedding ring was purchased.  She wanted to step inside to have it cleaned. The gentlemen offered to clean my ring as well. I gave it to him, not really thinking it needed it.  When he returned a few minutes later I could not believe the difference. It was stunning to look at how brilliantly it shined. I was taken aback at how dirty it must have truly been to now shine so noticeably. 

Before we first start experiencing the awakening of our spirit-person we do not know that our outlook is inhibited and limited. We think we see quiet clearly, in fact, even more clearly than those contaminated with overly spiritual minded thinking.  That is, until we step through the door and find a wonderful world of color and 3D experience we never knew was behind the door we carefully kept shut. 

Behind the door is a world that makes our natural world have a deeper purpose and meaning. It does not remove meaning, but enhances it.  It does not distort our sight, but removes the distortions. We truly step through the Wardrobe to find a world that looks a lot like our own, but this one has more substance and carries a brighter reality.  It also provides a contrast to show where our world does not line up with what is possible and true, but it also provides the way to bring the true about.

That Door Way to this world is Jesus. When we step into Him we step into a whole new world for this alternate reality of which I speak is found in Him for it is an extension of Jesus. Heaven is its name, or the Kingdom of God. However, heaven has been errantly taught to be a paradise only entered upon death when in reality it is a Kingdom entered first in life.  The reason some go to heaven when they die is because they were born again of heaven in Christ when they lived.  It isn’t the destination decided by God upon our death, but the home chosen while upon the earth. 

When we live by spirit we live from above, rather than from earth. Doing so causes a manifestation of our home upon the earth – every time we prophesy, heal the sick, raise the dead, set the captives free, or release the peace of the Lord.    

The Christian life is a life lived by the spirit in the Spirit and when we do that heaven is released to be tangibly experienced by those who live by their natural five senses so that we can help them find Jesus who will in turn awaken their spirits by His Spirit. 

Thursday, October 20, 2011

Yes, Jesus Loves Me . . .

Many are familiar with the popular children’s song “Jesus loves me this I know, for the Bible tells me so.  .  .”   I have come to realize that I must take issue with this line in the song, because the way I know Jesus loves me is because I know His love and that is why I also believe the Bible.  The Bible testifies about Him and tells us what He did for us, but the way we truly know He loves us is because we experience His loving us.  We do not need to settle for reading that He loves us. 

It is by His Spirit awakening our spirits that we know He is real.  I hold the Bible in high regard as it is fully inspired by the Living God.  But I think the Church has often elevated the Bible beyond its intended position.  We treat it as if it were Jesus instead of the book that tells all about Him.  It is a book that points beyond itself to the heavenly One who gives it meaning. 

I don’t know that Jesus loves me because the Bible tells me so. I do not know it because I can give reasoned evidences of its veracity. I simply know the Lord loves me because I know the love of the Lord.  My heart is alive to His presence and I hear His voice.  This is why I love His Word, not vice versa.

The way to know His love is to know Him. The Bible is a great place to start learning about Him, but Jesus is the Way and there is no substitute for Him.  The way to Jesus is Jesus.  This is why we are to seek the Lord with all our heart. This is why those that seek truth shall find Him.  It is the heart that seeks and the mind is renewed by what the heart encounters.

Seeking the proof sometimes sends us in the wrong direction because we are looking for intellectual reasons when what we need is a God encounter.  Often no reason will suffice until one experiences Him for him or herself.  I think that is why most reasons only satisfy believers, because unbelief is not a condition of the mind, but of the heart. Only when the heart has found God do the intellectual answers make much sense. It really all boils down to Jesus. 

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Internal Hearing of God's Voice

Hearing is not only a matter of receiving physical sound waves that our brains interpret as meaningful communication. You can silently read, forming each word in your mind, as if audibly received and yet there is no sound.  Similarly when God speaks to us in our spirit it is a receiving of knowledge, wisdom, or understanding that is heard from within.  It is still a hearing that is happening, but one that circumvents our physical ears. 

To continue to read this article click here to go to where the original article is posted. 

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

The Day The Earth Shook

It seemed like an ordinary day at the office, albeit slow and quiet. The silence stretched on for hours as I completed my work and then began to read a bit of Chesterton. I recently purchased two Chesterton books from Borders during their going out of business sales.  I have successfully finished one and commenced reading the other.  Interestingly the current read is entitled “Tremendous Trifles” for Chesterton uses the ordinary to expound on the extraordinary, the natural to comment on the supernatural.  His aim is to cause the reader to take note of the ordinary and see what is there more so than what is not there. 

While engrossed in Chesterton, my world begins to shake quiet literally. The room rocked, the walls moved, I shook about, and the 6 story building swayed as if it was no longer a solid stable structure.  The abnormal occurrence passed in seconds, leaving my insides a bit unsettled.  My eyes had to readjust to my surroundings just a bit as I opened my office door to discover from the testimony of others I had just experienced my first earthquake. 

After an expedient Google search I found that there had just been a 5.8 earthquake in Virginia. After some expending some time on Facebook status updates and comments I decided I wished to write, now inspired both by Chesterton and the strange event of the day.  Although I have no profound correlations or postulations to extrapolate from this event I wished to put it to words.  Thus, I will draw this post to a close as it has served its intended purpose—a note of a short moment in time on an otherwise uneventful day.  

Origin of Satan & Evil

God did not create Satan, He created Lucifer.  Lucifer was a mighty archangel who had charge over many other angels.  He dwelt in the glory of God in the realm of the heavenlies. 
Lucifer began to get proud and think He could be better than God. He rebelled against God and caused an uprising of angels to join forces with Him in efforts to go against God.  Due to this, Lucifer and one-third of the heavenly hosts were cast out of heaven.
To continue reading this article please click here to be taken to where the original article is posted. 

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

More on God's Goodness

I was recently asked to expound on the nature of the goodness of God in a manner that describes what is meant by goodness, rather than what is not meant.

There is nothing one can point to other than God to illustrate what is absolutely good.  The reason stating what is not meant is easier than stating what is meant, is that we can point to things that are not God for an example, but to speak of what is meant, I can only point to God. 

Many would dismiss this as circular reasoning. What is good? God.  How do we know God is good? God.  To be true, it is something that cannot be proven by another measure. If God were not the supreme good, then if there is such a thing, something else would have to be that self-referencing standard. 

Humans certainly aren’t absolute references for ultimate good. This is a fact we know too well. And yet, if we know it, how do we explain that we know it? How do we have a sense that we aren’t doing what is right all the time? And yet, we do know this. We know we fail to be good even though most of us want to be good and beat ourselves up internally when we are not.  If we reject the Biblical reason for this conflict between our desire to be good and our failure to be thus, what are we left with?

Of course, there are many postulations by many different belief systems, but all religion puts forth the need for striving to be more moral, better people.  Prayers, petitions, penance, and priest are all a part of our attempt to be better than we are and to somehow qualify for something greater than we deserve.  Christianity is not exempt. In many people, churches, and cultures, Christianity is about doing the same thing – striving to be better on their own merit to earn God’s acceptance. 

It’s not really debatable any longer that across the board we know we fail to be what we feel we ought to be.  But where is this invisible standard that makes it impossible to do whatever we want without any guilt? Why are we guilt ridden?  Why do we call those who cannot distinguish right from wrong, insane?

The Bible says the truth of God is written all around us in nature so that we are without excuse. We all know we have fallen short. We all know there is a good that we do not measure up to.  Jesus came to show us the way out of our sins and guilt.  He came not to condemn us for we were in that place of condemnation already. We knew full well the guilt and He came not to heap more rules and condemnation upon us, but to remove it. He came to do all the “work” to qualify for us, because work would never get us there.  But He can get us there and He who was pure because impure (became sin) for us and took the wages of sin upon Himself.  He took it all to the grave and He rose again leaving it all buried so that we no longer have to strive to burry our sins, for He came to bring life to whosoever will step into Him and experience His life. 

The reason we fail to be good, is because we are separated from the good God.  Jesus dealt with the sin so that we could be transformed in Him and know the Father just as we know Him. For if we have seen Jesus we have seen the Father.  The good life is not something we can work for, but something we can be given by the good Father. 

This is the essence of the goodness of God.  His heart is turned towards us while we were yet sinners. We were unable to make ourselves good, because goodness was not something that is separate from God. So the only way to become good is for God to take us into Himself again and He did this through Jesus.  There is no other name, no other way, and no other life that will do it for us.  We have a full history from the beginning of time of man trying and failing to be good on their own.  We know this full well. 

Goodness is not definable because a definition denotes limitation and His goodness knows no bounds.  Goodness can only be known by personal experiential connection with God directly or indirectly. Sometimes the indirect experience precedes the direct. We see the goodness of God by seeing a supernatural love demonstrated by a follower of Jesus, or we hear testimony of a miracle that opens our heart towards Him.  Sometimes it is a direct experience where God covers us in His presence and we feel and know His amazing goodness and love.  There are many ways to witness the goodness of God, and once our eyes are open to recognize Him we see that He was there all along and His goodness never failed us.  

Tuesday, July 12, 2011


I read an interesting article from the June edition of National Geographic.  The article conveyed that there is a new theory which is a major shift from the traditional theory about when religion arose in early civilizations. The traditional theory is that the nomadic hunter-gatherers settled down for purposes of agriculture, developed community, arts, and then religious worship. The religion was believed to be a construct of necessary social development to maintain class structure and the morality of the community.

However, archeologists have discovered a religious temple with no signs that it came after civilization, but before and then the society organized around it.  Worship preceded a society, rather than developing out of a society.  The writer was of the persuasion that a supernatural world was a man-made construct serving man made purposes, but the archeological theory was interesting none-the-less.

It would seem that we could agree that humanity has been poised for worship since the beginning of our existence.  Even those who would see themselves as having no religious or spiritual interests can be found singing with their hands out stretched at a concert.  Others relish the outdoors with a spiritual adoration.

Interestingly, it seems that many (not all) atheists are also very interested in Buddhist spirituality. This way they can have the benefits of spiritualism devoid of the religious tenants and theistic beliefs they disavow.  Most it would seem will allow a place for spirituality as long as Western religious tenants are not interwoven in the package.

Worship is birthed out of our desire to connect with something greater than us whether we direct it to God, a celebrity, nature, or a favorite pass time.  We also thrive on community. We want to connect with people. It’s in our nature to be communal, but we just can’t seem to get close enough to a human to satisfy that desire for meaningful connection.  Often relationships fail to work because people are seeking more than a human can give.  This is why a strand of three cords is not easily broken, but two cords often cannot handle the strain of seeking what can be only found in the missing cord in the other person. 

Worship draws man out of himself into connectivity with God.  The depths of man can connect with God in a way that it is impossible to connect with another human.  When we replace that God connection with a human we have an unhealthy relationship.  We seek intimacy, and we can find temporary fulfillment of that desire, but eventually all that is available to us to find connection fails to fulfill the desire.  We think it is the other person and for a time we reach a new high with a new person, but again we fail to attain because we have worn through the experience and are again in search for something more. 

Worship is the act of man which brings about that spirit to Spirit connection we so desperately need and awakens our being to His Being.  Worship comes in many forms, not all of them are a matter of singing and dancing.  Worship is also giving, and loving, and doing that which God has called you to do.  Obedience to the call of God is an act of worship. But even these things cannot take the place of physically exalting God through some form of expression.  Cry out to Him and He will draw near to you.  

Tuesday, June 7, 2011

What is meant by our saying "God is Good"

Trace the etymology of the word “good” back far enough and one will find “God” at its root.  When one says that God is good, it is not to say that humanity has judged and determined He fits the bill for the standard of goodness. Often times, it is forgotten that man does not apply that term to God, but God reveals the reality of goodness to man.  

Friday, April 22, 2011

Becoming Un-Boxed

So there was a Priest, a Rabbi, and an Agnostic on the Morning Joe Fox News program this morning. They were addressing the subject of the existence of God in conjunction the coming Easter holiday.   It was interesting to see the misunderstanding each held of the belief system of the other groups.  It is one thing to disagree, but it is another to disagree with something the other does not even believe.  It seemed the Agnostic had much more to say against other perspectives, whereas the Priest and Rabbi mostly talked about their own views. 

I review a great many articles on-line and I often see Christians misrepresenting Atheism and Agnosticism as well as Atheists and Agnostics misrepresenting Christians or religion in general. I don’t think this is done intentionally, but ignorantly.

Moreover, it is seldom true that any one person fully embodies a particular box of that belief system and yet we greatly desire to fit them into an understandable concise mold. Definitions by their very nature are exclusive and confined. When applied to a thing, a definition can be quiet accurate, but when applied to a person it is unlikely it could be thus. Describing the beliefs of a person or a group of people is probably more appropriate than defining it as a closed system.

People often ask my husband and I what denomination we are, or what group of Christianity do we call our own, or what model does our church follow as far as church structure.  We find humor in the questions because it tells us much about the questioner.  What is being asked is “what box can I put you in?” 

My story does not lend itself to a box. I grew up in a Southern Baptist charismatic church that was affiliated with the International Pentecostal Holiness Church and often did joint events with Catholics and Methodists as well as other groups. I am now in a church that is not non-denominational or denominational, but relationally joined with an international ministry. We have no model, but endeavor to hear God and follow Him. 

I enjoy looking for truth in systems of belief others would dismiss as all wrong. I don’t think it possible for any belief to be 100% wrong.  I also think that the truth ensconced in an unorthodox package can be a rare gem at times and would have been missed if the package became a deterrent. 

I am not advocating pluralism or anything of that nature. It’s just that our differences do not need to define us and divide us into a box. Nor do our agreements need to be the basis of alignment. Instead our love for the truth and our love for one another should be what unite us regardless of our differences. We do not need to shed our differences or enter an understandable box in order to find camaraderie.

Moreover truth is not something that brings a confined sameness, but a unity in diversity. I can look at something from one perspective without ignoring the value of a multiplicity of perspectives. Not because two opposite perspectives can be equally true, but because my perspective, where true, is only a part of the whole. I need the other parts so that I can shed what is false and find greater truth in the unity of other perspectives.  If each of us do that we all move closer together to what is real and further away from what is false. 

Friday, March 18, 2011

Following God

The nature of following God grows deeper in meaning the more one knows Him.  For many, following God is about believing and doing all the right things and not doing bad things.  It means reading your Bible, praying, and going to church on Sunday.  All the while there seems to be something missing, something that doing these things does not fulfill.

We try to circumvent that feeling of lack by heaping more spiritual activities into our lives.  We increase prayer, evangelism, reading the Bible. We attend more conferences, or serve more in our churches.  Still there seems like something ought to be different.  If anyone asked us if we were following God, we would vehemently affirm that we are.  The question offends us, but awakens an internal desire to know what is meant by this question. 

Too often, we equate following God with being a good church going Christian.  The thing is most of the Christian life as we commonly see it exemplified can be done without any supernatural strength.  Much can be done by natural effort. We do not need to have a supernatural relationship with Jesus to read our Bible, go to church, serve in the church, do moral things, and avoid immoral behavior.  The world is teeming with religions that do this quiet well. 

What then is the difference that comes from life with Jesus? If doing all these things is not the summation or even the essence of Christianity, how then do we follow God? 

Monday, March 14, 2011

Theocracy v. Democracy -- What Do Christians Want?

Proponents of America’s Christian heritage are often confused with being desirous of a theocracy rather than a democracy.  Instantly troubling thoughts of Constantine’s intertwined papal and political authority emerge.   Americans, for the most part, place a high value on freedom.  We do not want any institution to set itself up to be a controlling agent, most especially any institution with a high moral standard.
The church has not been a strong presence in American society for decades. It’s most boisterous contributions have been associated with moral issues such as homosexuality or abortion.  The Church has become defined by what it stands against, rather than who it loves. This is changing as a new Church is emerging, one who loves and serves without strings attached.
There was a day when Alexis De Tocqueville wrote that the churches in America were our greatest and firmest support.  He found the strength of our democratic Republic rested in the churches.  They aided in the self-governance of a nation by equipping the people to govern themselves.  In so doing, the government had no need to encroach on the morality of the people for the good of the people for they practiced self-control. 

This link will take you to where I am a regular writer. 

Jesus Is Salvation

The essence of salvation is Jesus. It truly is that simple. All debatable topics concerning salvation are solved with this simple truth.
“Salvation is found in no one else, for there is no other name under heaven given to mankind by which we must be saved” (Acts 4:12). Jesus said emphatically that He is the Way the Truth and the Life. It is not that believing is the way, but He is the way.
Yes, we believe in Him, but that is not a matter of intellectually adhering to true doctrines concerning Him. It is more correct to say that we believe into Him. We enter Him by experience with our spirit entering His Spirit and having the fullness of the Godhead living inside of us.
Many will debate whether or not all roads lead to salvation, but they cannot. Jesus is both the salvation and the road. We cannot separate the two. It is not a matter of sincerely believing some path will take us to the good life. It is that the good life is Jesus and to have that we must have Him.

By clicking above you will go to where my article was originally posted. 

Tuesday, March 1, 2011

All We Need Is Love

I was once convinced of the veracity of the statement “rules without relationship breeds rebellion.” I understood that love was the missing ingredient, but I didn't realize that the need for rules would be fulfilled if love was present.

I ought to have realized this, as I would often write of how Jesus fulfilled the law. I also knew unequivocally that the two greatest commandments that fulfill all the law are to love God and love people. However, my knowledge of this was trapped in my mind and had not traversed to my heart.

My knowing was not really knowing at all. I could write all about it, but I didn't really get it. I've come to understand that I have not abandoned my relationship with the rules. My thought was that if we introduce love, then love will compel people to obey the rules.

But when a husband loves his wife, he knows what things may bring her pain, disappointment, or fear. He will not do these things, not because she has given him a rule book to follow, but because he loves her and cares about her heart. This is love. Love does not need rules, but if there were some, it would fulfill them just by maintaining the way of love. A husband who loves his wife does not need to be told to be faithful to her, he wouldn't think of being otherwise.

Just the same, love is great enough to cover a multitude of sins. If a wife loves her husband, she will love even when his love grows cold or his feet stumble into a path that does not protect her heart. Love does not keep a record of wrongs. It is always faithful and true. It always hopes and perseveres.

Many look at I Corinthians 13, famously known as the Love Chapter, as the criteria one must follow to love. Instead, it is the description of what love looks like. There in lies a significant difference. The former way of thinking lends one to trying to preform the way of love by following the rules, the latter is realizing that love is present or absent in your heart. When you see what love looks like, you can realize if you know this kind of love or not. The passage is not the rules of love to follow if love is missing, it is the fruit of love that can only come from tangible contact with God's love.

The more one has experienced His love the more their love can look like His. This is why a strand of three chords is not easily broken.

We will wear ourselves out trying to follow rules of love. It cannot be done. Such a life is inauthentic. It is a life of performance, an actor upon a stage. It is an exhausting show to maintain no matter how sincere one is. When we do what is right so the other person does not leave, or so that they do what we want in return, we do not have love. When we withhold love when they have hurt us, we do not have love.

From a young age we begin relationship with rules even when those rules were given to us by those who love us, we learn following the rules is the good life, and breaking them will hurt. We were not designed to be captives. We are created to have free dominion. The only way freedom can reign is if our hearts are healed and we live out of healthy hearts that are not afraid to love and do not get knotted up when someone breaks the rules.

Jesus did not lecture the woman caught in adultery. He protected her from the punishment of breaking the rules and sent her on her way, simply stating, “go and sin no more.” She did not need external punishment, but internal experience with love. Experiencing the love of Jesus protecting her from those who would condemn her was enough to free her from continuing sin.

The more I see what love is all about, the more I see how far away I am from that standard. At the same time, I also see how getting there is about resting, not trying. The more I rest in the Father's love, the more His love will flow from my heart.  

Monday, February 14, 2011

Case of the Shoulds

I have become increasingly aware of how often people, myself included, use the word "should." The word flows freely in our vocabulary of external governance. We are so quick to say what someone "should" or "should not" do.  Sometimes I hear it so frequently from people, I say "they have a case of the shoulds."

It's a form of captivity that we live in and so artfully impose on others. We do not stop to think that we haven't a good reason to tell someone else they should do such and such.  Nor do we know why we tell ourselves we should do this and that.

I find myself questioning should statements, whether my own or someone else's. I trace it back to ascertain if this imperative statement is appropriately placed and usually find it is not. Notwithstanding, people are often looking for advice in the form of a should statement. "What should I do?" comes the question either directly voiced or implied.

It's not that there may not be a good course of action, but it is that if a person needs to be told it by another they are most likely not doing it freely out of a place of love. So when I put my "should" on another person, I rob them of their choice. Sure they can disregard my opinion, but that obligatory should has lodged into their consciousness nagging them to do accordingly. Instead of being self-governed by the heart, they are feeling the weight of external governance imposed on them by an opinionated person.

Many should statements are well intended and come about with one person thinking the other should do this very good thing or stop doing this very bad thing.  However, we often end up keeping people captive, rather than showing them how to get set free.

Many times "shoulds" abound because we want to protect the person we love. We want them to do the right thing. Other times it is not even a matter of right and wrong. The should comes out when you tell your friend they really should go to your favorite restaurant or read your favorite book.  The should creates an imposed obligation that does not bring freedom and life to the recipient. Suddenly their task to go to that restaurant or read that book feels like an unwanted weight upon them, a chore rather than a fun idea.

Certainly we can share our experience with our friends of our fabulous dining experience.  But we may want to do so without using obligatory language.

Once you start to think about it, I imagine, you will be astonished at how often you hear the word should.  How many times do you find yourself saying it? How many times do those around you say it? And how many of those times was it really necessary to make such a declaration? I'm sure there are some necessary occasions worthy of the word.

Notice I refrained from saying one should not make should statements. I only wish to bring our attention to the matter and let people freely choose what they wish to do or not do in response.

Friday, February 11, 2011

Book Review: Letters to Malcolm -- Chiefly on Prayer by C.S. Lewis

C.S. Lewis’ Letters to Malcolm—Chiefly on Prayer is a rare gem amongst his brilliant works. The difference is that these letters are written to a dear friend rather than for public consumption. Reading them gives one a sense of sitting in the living room of the Kilns where Lewis lived within walking distance of Oxford University. It is like pulling up a chair and listening in on an intellectual, yet spiritual, conversation full of candid thoughts and mysterious postulations.

Each letter, building on the last, has something to do with the act of prayer.  The nature of heaven and the mystery of nature are ever present in the discussion.  Some of the foundational questions of this dialog are: What sort of creatures are we? What sort of world do we inhabit? What is the proper role of religion? How will the New Earth be like and yet unlike the old?  How does prayer affect us and how do our prayers affect the world?  Do they affect the Lord or are we their effect?

Lewis makes bold quotable statements throughout such as, “We have no non-religious activities; only religious and irreligious.” Or that “Heaven will display far more variety than Hell.” He speaks to the eternality of man bound by a linear progression of time by saying, “For though we cannot experience our life as an endless present, we are eternal in God’s eyes; that is, in our deepest reality.” He goes on to say that, “. . . our creaturely limitation is that our fundamentally timeless reality can be experienced by us only in the mode of succession.”

One very key component of discussion is the doctrine of the resurrection of the body.  Lewis laments that this is a very key doctrine for we often think that our new bodies will be only spiritual rather than also physical. But he says that this world was made for sense-beings—people who can experience the physical world and process it into our souls creating a “chord in the ultimate music.”  We often think of the “new earth” as something so otherworldly it bears no similitude to our physical world forgetting that it was a physical Eden before the Fall.  To remember that our physical nature is not a product of the fall is imperative to properly thinking of our connection with eternity. There is something special about humans that no other creatures enjoy. 

Interestingly Lewis often comments in these letters that the things he is saying is something he feels free to say because it is in the context of letters between friends.  I count it a joy to be able to peer into those private dialogues and experience a bit of Lewis behind the curtain of his public writings.  “Christianity,” he implores, “essentially involves the supernatural.” The level of mystery and transcendence of which he speaks bears greater depth than my simple understanding of his words. Great truths are buried in these pages waiting for readers to unveil them for a new generation.  

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

The Diversity of Heaven

I have started off the New Year with a regained desire to read. I am presently reading my forth book of the year, Letters To Malcolm by C.S. Lewis.  In it he writes a most interesting sentence.

“If grace perfects nature it must expand all our natures into the full richness of the diversity which God intended when He made them, and Heaven will display far more variety than Hell.” 

This concept is not new to me, but I am always excited when I can borrow the eloquence of Lewis. 

It is common to point out the uniformity and lack of diversity and creativity that exists within many institutionalized religions. Christianity is no exception.  It would seem that as soon as belief becomes a religion all diversity is sucked right out of it.

In some circles I find it rare to find a person who beats to a different drum. Even when I find them, I usually find them to be the ostracized one.  The misfit, the outcast, the one that is quite uncomfortable around those considered “normal” or “popular.” Even though they have this insatiable desire to be themselves, they feel they haven’t the permission from others to be thus. This is sad.  Conformity is often expected over diversity. 

This kind of social behavior is the story of many movies set in a school campus such as Never Been Kissed, Diary of a Wimpy Kid, or Mean Girls. Just the same, it is far too common inside one’s local church. 

Even our concept of heaven is often one of multitudes of believers dressed in fancy white robes singing the same wondrous chorus in praise before the throne of God. We seem inept to think outside of pristine uniformity.

If it is true then that the reality of heaven ought to be far more diverse than the realm of darkness, why is this not reflected in the Church to a visible degree?  I do know of ministries, churches, artist, musicians, and other individuals where a diverse creative flavor is continually produced.  But it is still at a level of being the exception rather than the rule. 

One reason, which may account for the lack of diversity, is that believers are often of the persuasion that they are earth bound and heaven hopeful.  By this, I mean, we often purport that we will go to heaven when we die, but haven’t much concept of presently living from the reality of heaven.  We put into the afterlife much of what is intended for the present life, to such an extent that we cannot see heaven without looking through earthly bound eyes.  Instead Jesus called us to see earth with heaven’s eyes.  We have the whole thing reversed.  Our template has not been the creativity of heaven, but the predictability of a fallen earth. 

We have turned the truth of God into a religion of man that filters that truth through our earthly perspectives instead of receiving the truth and the perspective of heaven.  As a result we are very boring, mundane, conformed, and unified without real unity.  We unify around doctrines and practices instead of around Jesus.  With Jesus at the center there is much room for diversity, but with doctrines at the center there is only room for conformity. 

If a person’s relationship with another person was based on believing a list of facts about them rather than knowing them by experience, the relationship would be stagnant and old.  It would be based on fact-knowledge rather than experienced-knowing; the former being stationary and the latter being ever growing and expanding. 

We can see that God is creative. I find it fascinating that Revelation mentions creatures in heaven that are unlike anything on this earth.  If God is a Creator God then those who claim to know Him and have Him living inside them, should be very creative people.  They should be originally themselves copying not their friends, family, church, or pastor, but the Lord Himself. We become more and more who we are without fear or wounds keeping us from being that person as we get closer to Jesus.  As He conforms us to the image of Himself, we become more like ourselves than ever before and less like anyone else.  That is the beauty of the diversity of heaven.