Supreme Ambition Ministries

To Know Christ and to Make Him Known – Philippians 3:10

NOT ALL WHO SAY, “LORD”!

What is it that defines a Christian? How does one know, if he has truly entered into the Holy of Holies of God’s Presence? The song in the video (click the arrow) is one which describes one of the most significant keys to the salvation of man and that is the surrender to God’s Lordship.
Interestingly, the Lordship of Christ is viewed by many within Christendom as something additional a young believer aspires to or achieves subsequent to his conversion. For Christ to become Lord of a Christian’s life is like a second conversion experience. Some believers even go to an altar of prayer or make a public confession of their desire to make Jesus Lord as well as Saviour. Of course, there are equally as many, who see the Lordship of Christ as a process one enters into at the time of conversion.
Let me be clear. It is not my purpose to debate the ‘how’s’ of Lordship. It is my sincere desire to help Christians recognize the fact of Christ’s Lordship over their lives. In two previous writings I attempted to address this same subject (Who’s the Boss and Alpha and Omega ). I am addressing it once again because I believe our willingness to surrender to Christ’s rule over us is a significant missing link in our Post-modern culture. Independence and individualism are the cultural elixars that are hawked from the midway of life’s carnival in the twenty-first century. We read the label, accept the promises, and drink it down no matter how badly it tastes or how failed the results.
Last Wednesday evening as our Church Body met together the Lord led us to the song you heard above, “You are still Holy”. There is a phrase in the song, which I felt was very telling on the subject of Lordship. She sings, “I come into your chamber and dance at your feet, Lord. You are my Saviour and I’m at your mercy. All that has been in my life up till now belongs to you…I belong to you.” At that point in the song I paused and asked the brothers a and sisters to describe for me what they felt was the Biblical background of the song. The flock Kathi and I are privileged to serve is spiritually keen, so it did not surprise me to hear more than one of them say, “It seems like a wedding.” I drew their attention to the Song of Solomon .
It is with fear and trembling we enter into this ‘most holy place’ of scripture. We are privileged to view the wedding night of King Solomon and his bride. How would you like future generations reading about your wedding night? We must remember as we read the pages of this book that we are but guests here. We have been invited in order for us to glean something of what our fellowship with our Lord is to be. Our Lord is seeking His bride and He longs for the intimacy of a ‘wedding night’ each time His people gather together. Does that describe the last Church service you were in? If it does, dear brother…dear sister, then you are among the few.
The celebration is over. The guests have all retired to their homes. The bed has been perfumed. The candles are lit. The harp and the lyre are being softly played in the courtyard below the window of the King’s inner chamber. Solomon waits upon his bed for the one, who is ‘the lilly of the valley’ and the‘rose of sharon’. Suddenly, she enters. Her gown is sheer and beautiful beyond words. Her hair is long and flowing. She wears a veil and will from this day forward to show her exclusivity to her husband. He and he alone will see her face. She enters his presence with a dance. She dances for him in a way that she would never dance for anyone else. She bows at his feet and shows gratitude for his mercy toward her…
truck.jpg Now, wait just a minute. Back the truck up, Charlie! That surely sounds chauvanistic. Seems like you are trying to resurrect a patriarchal society. Women can vote now, ya’ know? They are equal to men and, if anyone dances in the bed chamber, it will be him, not me! Hold on! Before you ‘draw and quarter’ me or have me beaten with the ‘cat of nine tails’. Therein lies my point. I certainly am not suggesting that women are men’s servants or second-class citizens to a male hierarchy. What I am suggesting is that this Biblical portrait is a peek into what it means to make Jesus Lord. It is an utter surrender of one’s self. You see, the self is the only thing I really own. It is the only thing I have to give.
You see, the unfortunate plight of women in the jewish patriarchal society was such that they were utterly dependant upon men for their survival. Often, young women had no choice in whom they married. Marriage for some women in those days was simply a ticket to survival, food, and clothing. Fortunately,however, many of them married well and their husbands were benevolent, loving men, who cherished their companions. If a woman were so blessed to be chosen by such a man, her wedding night was an dance of gratitude and undying love. Her dance was an expression of her surrender into his care. She recognized that in her husband her every need and desire would be met. She saw him as the source of her life and her hope of a bright future.
Our culture is different today. We value independence. Freedom of choice is a priceless commodity in our culture. Men and women are considered equals in every way, and so they are. We’ve come a long way, baby! But, our brand of society surely has its own set of problems when it comes to Lordship and surrender. We don’t know quite how to do it and still retain our individualtiy. We have little frame of reference for literally ‘laying it all down’. We usually end up holding just a little in reserve. We’re willing to board the ship and journey to the unfamiliar but we keep our little boat anchored in the harbour…just in case.
I have a drama playing out in my mind. I have been chosen by the King of all Kings. I am a part of His Bride. He has a purpose, a plan for my life. He is the Sovereign. He, and He alone knows how this drama is to be played out. His passion for me is far beyond anything I could imagine. His ability is above and beyond all I could ask or think. He promises to fulfill my purpose and provide for me along the way. So…I come into His chamber and call Him…Lord…Because He truly is MY Lord.

September 28th, 2007 Posted by | Discipleship, Lordship | comments

WE HAVE MET THE ENEMY AND…

As a young person living in the hills of West Virginia one of my favorite things to do on Sunday mornings was to read the comic section in the paper. Sunday’s comics were better than the daily strips. There were more of them and they were in color. Some of my favorites then are still my favorites.

One such comic was Pogo. pogo3.jpgPogo was a character created by Walt Kelly and, as many cartoons, became a satire on the social, political and moral blunders of the day. Perhaps the most famous quotation which comes from the strip deals with the pollution of the planet. Pogo Possum and Porky Pine are gingerly walking through the forrest one day. The forrest is littered with cans, broken glass, garbage and trash of all sorts. Porky Pine trys to put the best spin on things saying, “Ah, Pogo, the beauty of the forrest primeval gets me in the heart.” Pogo Possum responds…“It gets me in the feet Porky Pine.” Suddenly, the truth of Pogo’s words come crashing in upon Porky Pine and he says, “This stuff is hard to walk on.” It is at this point that Pogo’s innocense and honesty catapault him into the role of a philosopher and he quotes the immortal words of Commandore Oliver Hazzard Perry to General William Henry Harrison…except with just a little twist. “We have met the enemy and he is…us.” With that statement we leave our little friends in the Okefenokee Swamp to contemplate the new revelation that sometimes the greatest problem I have is…me.

Pogo’s contemplation gives opportunity for me to look at myself and my world and try to discern the problem. Most of my life has revolved around the Church. My earliest memories have something to do with Church or the relationships found therein. For about 40 of those years I have been preaching the gospel. During that time some of the most glorious times I have had in my life have been with brothers and sisters in the Church. However, during that same time frame, some of the most devastating times in my life have been with brothers and sisters in the Church. Interestingly, it has been during adversity that I have seen the most growth in my life. Let me correct that. It is usually after the adversity has passed that I see the growth, if there is any. When I’m going through it, I usually don’t see anything but the difficulty.

WHO IS THE ENEMY?

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Perhaps one of the most difficult things to discern in damaged relationships is who is at fault. After all, if there is a problem in my relationship with you, it must be you. Why? That’s obvious! It can’t be me… so it must be you. Who is the enemy anyway? Is it Snidely Whiplash? Is it the pastor, nursery director, or deacon? No? Then, perhaps it might be the parking lot attendant or someone on the custodial staff. Still haven’t found the culpret? How about your companion or the kids…Those kids! They are a sight, aren’t they? Not them either, huh? Come now. Surely you can locate this dispicable character. I mean, after all, it is that person who is causing you such pain. Try really hard, now. Oh yeah, it’s the devil, isn’t it? Well. Yes. He certainly is the one who is ultimately behind all the evil and lies in the world. But in my limited experience it seems as long as we can blame our misbehavior on, ‘the devil made me do it’, we will never get to the real problem in our life and that is…me. When Adam chose to eat of the forbidden tree he blamed Eve. When Eve was confronted with her fault, she pointed her finger at the serpent. In the Church we are experts at blaming others for things that may be mostly our fault. In the political arena the Republicans and Democrats blame one another. The liberal media blames the Religious Right. The Conservatives think they have all the answers. Truth be known, I need to sit with Pogo and Porky and view the ‘trash’ in my swamp. Before I can point my finger at anyone, I must first look at Me. Could I really be the greatest enemy in my own life. I am a broken man in the midst of broken people in a broken world. Yes, there are others who contribute to the mess I see. But, if I look long enough into the cesspool of iniquity I call my life, it won’t be long before I get the same revelation Pogo got…I have met the enemy and he is ME. Scoot over Pogo…I need to think about this for a while. Selah!

September 15th, 2007 Posted by | Discipleship, Relationships | 2 comments