We are told by the words of Jesus that until we are willing to lose our lives, we will never actually be alive…
This is clearly not a physical death, but a death to what I will refer to as the flesh. “The Flesh” is our natural birth state of self-pleasure and preservation, otherwise described as our sinful nature. We bear this flesh thanks to Adam and his overly impressive ability to be silent… I personally don’t believe Adam had a rebellious heart towards God; his sin came in silence and an unwillingness to tell the serpent to piss off and leave his woman alone! I do however, believe that silence is far worse than rebellion… Or maybe, upon knowing THE WORD [Jesus], silence is the root of rebellion against God.
HE is the word. I am the voice. I have something to say & I’m going to say it! – Andrew Shearman
In the context of this quote, there is a very broad variety of things “to say”…
- I can speak life into someones heart.
- I can speak a word of loving rebuke [correction] to a brother or sister.
- I can speak a prophetic word from the Lord into someones life.
- I can speak directly to hell and tell it to stay there.
- I can speak to the Holy Spirit in tongues.
- I can speak words of wisdom or knowledge amidst a conversation.
- I can speak a public word that proclaims the glory of Jesus Christ.
- I can speak words of healing and deliverance.
This is clearly an abridged list of words that are able to be spoken in a spiritual and natural context… 6 months ago I believed only 3 of these 8 examples were permissible according to my theology. I have lived within a spiritually conservative silent, self-deprecating theological bubble… a bubble I was very comfortable in I might add. In this bubble, I never had to worry about being viewed as a “crazy Christian”, because they were only on TV. I always had a justification for my sin. And, I could always “impress” someone with my theological word vomit. The problem was, this bubble kept me from experience an intimacy with God that I knew existed but couldn’t touch. I was able to be near God, but the bubble prevented me from being able to touch, taste and smell God, The KING and my Father.
This brought me to a harsh reality about 5 months ago…
Until I am willing to die to my theology [which tells me about God], I will never be able to be alive in the Spirit [which is God]!
And so, I began to build a gallows for my theology… I built it out of the names of prominent “Calvinist” pastors, whose names I threw out like free t-shirts at a sporting events in order to gain respect from fellow theological captives. I bolted the wood together with my judgments of other doctrines and the justification for my arrogance. And finally the noose was tied together with numerous different strands of fear and baggage. The day came when I had to drop the floor out, and watch what I had spent the last ten years of my life pursuing, swing back and forth until completely lifeless. The moment my theology breathed its last breath in front of my eyes I cried out, ¡Estoy Vivo! which translates, I’m Alive!
I now know what it feels like to speak all 8 examples I shared with you… In grace and freedom I have touched, tasted and smelled the unadulterated love of my Father, which has liberated me in a way I never imagined could be real!
Before I conclude, let me say one thing on rebellion: Because I am in pursuit of no longer being silent, I no longer feel the draw I once felt to rebel! I will rebel only against the status quo and the silence we have inherited from Adam.
It would be unfair for me to post this without making sure that you understand some of this is a process for me… I wrote this on my flight from Malaga to Dublin and at the Dublin airport waiting for my flight back to the America, I believe in my heart that God wanted me to approach a girl and tell her that she was healed of her illness, but I caved to an old fear that is being uprooted from my heart… My ear is tuned in to The Voice and I long to live in obedience to Him, every time He speaks… part of me getting there is going through the process of just stepping when God calls me too… The serpent wants and needs us to be silent, and I may miss a few moments throughout my life, but I will speak and I encourage you to do the same.