Dare

The price of freedom is the willingness to do sudden battle anywhere, any time, and with utter recklessness. – Robert A. Heinlein

Every attempt to make war easy and safe will result in humiliation and disaster. – General William T. Sherman

I haven’t read much Heinlein, but the man understood the costs of freedom. When Franklin admonished that unnamed man after the Constitution was written, he was admitting that there was a cost to freedom.  There is a cost to maintaining freedom, but it is not one that can be paid with money.

Freedom is akin to responsibility.  Instead of passing the responsibility for your own life on to someone else, some governmental body, or some autocrat, you freely choose to take on the burden of self-governance.  You succeed or fail of your own volition.  Freedom is not easy, nor safe, and every day is a constant war against the enemies of freedom.

There are some that wish for someone to lord over them, to remove the risk from their lives, and to make it safe.  These people live in fear of the power of freedom.  Freedom can be scary.  As I have written before, freedom is from God, and God is powerful enough that just speaking louder than a mere whisper would unleash so much destructive force on the universe that it would come undone.  Freedom, being from God, is much the same – it can be immensely destructive or it can single-handedly be the most powerful force for good in the world.

Every day we get to choose between freedom and slavery.  You will be called upon to defend your choice and must be ready to do so in “sudden battle.”

Why do I succeed?

I succeed because I am willing to do things you are not. I will fight against the odds. I will sacrifice. I am not shackled by fear, insecurity, or doubt. I feel those emotions – drink them in and then swallow them away to the blackness of hell. I am motivated by accomplishment, not pride. Pride consumes the weak – kills their heart from within. If I fall – I will get up. If I am beaten – I will return. I will never stop getting better. I will never give up – ever.

That is why I succeed.

Are you prepared mentally, emotionally, spiritually, and physically to make “sudden battle?”  Are you trying to take the easy road that is filled with humiliation and disaster?

Imagine an army made up of like-minded men, free in Christ and by their own volition.  There is no enemy that army could not conquer.

Be tireless.

Silence

I recently took a weekend away with a number of close Godly men where we studied how to better communicate with God, not just in how we pray, but in how we listen.

si·lence

noun

1. absence of any sound or noise; stillness.
2. the state or fact of being silent;  muteness.
3. absence or omission of mention, comment, or expressed concern: the conspicuous silence of our newspapers on local graft.
4. the state of being forgotten; oblivion: in the news again after years of silence.
5. concealment; secrecy.
verb

6. to put or bring to silence; still.
7. to put (doubts, fears, etc.) to rest; quiet.
8. Military . to still (enemy guns), as by more effective fire.
Psalm 46 instructs us to be still, which matches up perfectly with the first definition of the word silence.  We are unable to pay attention to an all-powerful God, who speaks quietly so as not to destroy the foundations of the universe with his might, unless we can be still. In addition to that, if we wish to hear the voice of God, we cannot be talking to him (muteness).  God wants us to consciously listen for him.
The third definition applies more to how we communicate with God.  If we are constantly asking for things, then we are no more open to hearing God than if we did not pray at all.  I do not spend my whole day asking my wife for things, but rather we speak with each other.  The same should be true of your conversations with God.  If I spent my day just asking my wife to do stuff for me and never spent time adoring her or listening to her speak, she would quickly tune me out.
The fifth definition correlates with another instruction given to us in the book of Matthew where we are to pray in secret.  How else can you show God that you are committed to spending earnest time with Him unless you set yourself apart and eliminate all of the distractions that keep you from fully engaging?
God uses silence also.  He uses it to quiet our hearts and soothe our souls.  When we are tormented and hurting, we are like Job in the following passage.
I have no peace, no quietness; I have no rest, but only turmoil. Job 3:26
Consider this final passage about silence. If you were ever to truly achieve it, creation itself would cry out.  How amazing would it be to hear all of creation shouting to the Lord?
I tell you,” he replied, “if they keep quiet, the stones will cry out. Luke 19:40
Next time you sit down to pray, find some time for silence. Listen to God.  Let Him speak for a change.  He has something powerful He wants to tell you if you just slow down, still your thoughts, and silence your lips.
He says, “Be still, and know that I am God;
    I will be exalted among the nations,
    I will be exalted in the earth.” Psalm 46:10

Perspective

You and I are nothing.  The concerns of this world are ultimately nothing.

Consider this.  Both of us live on Earth, the third planet from our sun.  There are eight planets in our solar system (nine if you want to lump Pluto in).

That star (the sun) is just one of somewhere between 200,000,000 and 400,000,000 stars just in the Milky Way galaxy, and the Milky Way is a small galaxy.  Most galaxies contain between 100,000,000,000 and 1,000,000,000,000 stars (Universe Today).  There are also probably 100,000,000 to 500,000,000 galaxies in the universe based on our calculations.  That is unfathomably large.

Galaxy

A speck in a speck in a speck that is a speck on a speck.

That makes you less than a speck, on a speck, orbiting a speck, amongst millions of specks, that happen to be specks compared to a few hundred million specks.  You are infinitesimally small.

Guess what else…

Indeed, the very hairs of your head are all numbered. Luke 12:7

Before I was born the Lord called me;
from my mother’s womb he has spoken my name. Isaiah 49:1

For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life. John 3:16

You may be small, but so was David.  He was the smallest of his brothers, and rose to be King of Israel through faith and deed.  He is credited as a man of great faith, as one to be emulated, not because of his stature, but because of his recognition and perspective gained in light of it.  David recognized he was weak and threw himself at the feet of an almighty God.

Are you going to be a speck forever or are you going to throw yourself at the foot of God and wrap yourself in His love and power?

Isn’t that the only true path to liberty?

Culture War

You are at war today.  You may not feel like it, but the truth is constantly under attack.  The attackers are able to redefine the terms of battle though by changing the words used… instead of equality, we get inequality; instead of fairness, we get unfairness.  The end result of political correctness and progressivism is at hand in that it becomes ever more difficult to express traditional ideals when the nontraditional terminology is forced down our throats.

George Orwell once expressed in his novel 1984 that it was possible to eliminate dissent by eliminating the words with which to voice dissent.  While I suspect we are still far from this scenario, the groundwork is being laid every day by our academia, our media, our politicians, and our national leaders.  Those that dare speak the truth are chastised and minimized in perfect Alinsky fashion.

There is just one problem that these people must hate is how difficult it is to extinguish the truth.  As with freedom, all the truth needs is oxygen and it will burst forth into brilliant flame. It will illuminate the darkness wherever it catches and spreads as if fueled by some unseen force.

Isn’t it funny how similar that sounds to the Truth of Christ?

Set your brushfires.  Continue to ignite the truth and the Truth everywhere that you go.  The world is hungry for it and will burst into flame.

Glory

Praise be to God.  All glory and honor to Him.

This morning I read a story on Townhall.com that dealt with the issue of humility with Olympic athletes.  While I greatly enjoyed watching the athletic competition, and the success of all of the athletes who medaled.  I believe, as the author did, that humility was short-changed.  There is celebrating an achievement and enjoying the moment, and there is self-glorification.

Celebrating another gold medal or showboating?

My wife often comments on this during NFL games where a player will get up after a single play and showboat as if they have won the game single-handedly.  I have seen this across our culture as well with many trumpeting their own successes and accomplishments more so now than ever before.

Who do we think we are?  Do we think we are anything special, deserving glory and honor before other men?

Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit. Rather, in humility value others above yourselves. Philippians 2:3

You will never glory in God till first of all God has killed your glorying in yourself. – Charles H. Spurgeon

Before a downfall the heart is haughty,
    but humility comes before honor.Proverbs 18:12

Showing off is the fool’s idea of glory. – Bruce Lee

Now, there were a fair share of athletes who praised God for their victories, and for that I rejoice as they used their accomplishment to focus the light of Christ on the world if only for a passing moment on the world’s largest stage.

May I never boast except in the cross of our Lord Jesus Christ, through which the world has been crucified to me, and I to the world.Galatians 6:14

Is the failure on the athletes themselves?  Surely they share some responsibility in reveling in their own insignificant accomplishments.  Is the failure on the exultation of the crowd?  The praise of the mob?  Are we not as much to blame for the athlete’s failure to show proper humility in acknowledging and praising God in victory or defeat?

Many people have praised or admonished Tim Tebow for his outspokenness about his faith.  However you fall on Tim, I believe most people would encourage their children to look at how he plays football and the humility he shows at all times.  This man glorifies God with every snap, pass, run, touchdown, interception, and sack.  His heart is with God at all times, and so everything he does on the field is for God whether good or bad.

Praying mid-game

I look at it as a relationship that I have with him that I want to give him the honor and glory anytime I have the opportunity. And then right after I give him the honor and glory, I always try to give my teammates the honor and glory. And that’s how it works because Christ comes first in my life, and then my family, and then my teammates. – Tim Tebow.

Humility is not an easy thing to master.  It is a challenge to be humble in the face of what seems like an exceptional accomplishment, whether that is a gold medal at the Olympics, a promotion at work, the achievement of one of your lifetime goals, or in the face of honor brought by others.  For that reason, this has been a difficult entry for me to write, for I am badly in need of grace and mercy.

I am a prideful person, and it holds me back daily, but despite that if you were to ask me who gave me the legs to run, the arms to throw and catch, the eyesight to see the target, and the mental and physical fortitude to compete, I would not hesitate to give all of the glory to God.  I might enjoy the contest and the victory, but not as much as the opportunity to use my accomplishment as a brilliant beacon for Christ, if only for a fleeting moment.

Direct the glory to Him, not me.

Spark

It is for freedom that Christ has set us free. Stand firm, then, and do not let yourselves be burdened again by a yoke of slavery. (Galatians 5:1)

Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid or terrified because of them, for the Lord your God goes with you; he will never leave you nor forsake you. (Deuteronomy 31:6)

It does not take a majority to prevail but rather an irate, tireless minority, who keep setting brushfires of freedom in the minds of men. (Samuel Adams)

Angry Baby

Irate.

The last quote speaks of liberty from oppression and tyranny, but it just as well can speak of the freedom found in Christ. Freedom and liberty are not American ideals. That is an intentional misdirection of those that do not want to admit God’s Truth. The Truth is that Freedom is found in Christ alone. Liberty is found in Christ alone.

It does not take a majority to prevail, but rather a single faithful man, empowered by Christ in all of His glory, spreading his Word and Truth to all and sparking not one revolution in Faith, but many. If it only takes a single spark to start a raging fire, then why are we waiting? Light the spark of Freedom.

Be irate. Be tireless. Be FREE.

Wellspring

I do not know where this venture will take me, but know that there is much work to do. 

The wellspring of liberty in the West is under threat, and while many will charge to her defense, there are many gaps, and many challengers.  The enemy is great.  The enemy understands the battle to take place… it will be a spiritual battle, a philosophical battle, and a cultural battle.  It very well may become a physical battle someday.

I intend to visit upon spiritual, philosophical, cultural and political issues as I continue.  Each day will likely bring a new topic, but I fully intend to weave them all together and build a picture not of a world torn apart by ideologies or politics, but rather one of a world fallen, broken, and unable to stand erect without the grace and mercy of God.

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