I wanted to direct your attention to The Living Loved Life portion of The Fatherland website. It is a podcast idea to train ourselves to notice that The Holy Spirit has been speaking to us all this time and we should really start to recognize it.
I've discovered that Shame is one of the enemy's prime weapons and he employs that weapon every chance he gets (usually beginning while we're really young in life).
I always fought God (as most of us do) not because I wanted to, but because the infection of Shame made me not be able to accept love from anyone - not even God's love for me - because Shame had me thinking that I needed to protect myself from all the hurts of this world.
But listening and learning from these podcast conversations has been an eye-opener and a shame-melter-away-er for me. (If you listen to these conversations from the beginning, I think you'll discover, as I did, that soaking in - just hearing the truth that God loves us - over and over - will really start to help you Surrender to that Truth: The Truth that what God says through His Son, Jesus, in His Word to us - namely that we are loved unconditionally, and we are good, and we are worthy, and we are perfect, and we are a child of God, and we are His partner, and God even helps us in our work (Psalm 90:17, 1 Corinthians 3:9, and there is another New Testament verse that is more poignant but I can't recall it just now), and so many other Truths; Surrender to all of it; Surrender to a belief in all of it... - it has changed my life for the better and it can change yours for the better as well!
Even though I was born and baptized into the Church at a very young age (was taught and knew much about God), I've still wondered, that if I never really knew God (had a relationship with God) until I was 45, did that mean I wasn't saved all those years ago/not until I was "Born Again" through His Spirit (and started believing all these Shame-melting revelations) after I was 45?
But as I've soaked up even more of God's Truth, I've come to realize and believe that God's work - God's saving of me - is GOD'S work, not my work. I've been saved and loved and was in His care always (I just didn't believe I was). How long do we live in this world and see a blue sky and not know or even refuse to believe the sky is blue? Not very long. We take that info for granted. But the majority of people I encounter live in a world where they don't seem to know (and even refuse to believe) that they live in a world where the fact of “God loves us” is as common as the sky is blue and the grass is green. I've learned God works this way: It's all about what HE is doing - not what I am doing or what I've ever done.
You see, that's the biggest, overriding Truth of all: GOD has initiated this "love" thing in us... HE chose us first (Ephesians 1:4, James 1:18). What I needed to hear, over and over again - soaking in that truth - was that none of "this"... (this world, this life I live, my experiences), started with me. The Truth is, everything started - I started - with God loving... God loving me. When I finally surrendered to that idea and began to believe it - began to believe that The Father has been holding me in His arms from the beginning; that I've been "saved" and safe in His arms from the very start; that even before I was formed I was chosen and you were too [because God says that He desires everyone to be saved and come to the knowledge of the Truth (1 Timothy 2:4)]... that all this talk of being "born again" or "picking a date" and where we got saved is really just confusing talk to get us to again put ourselves in a place more important than God. Because the right interpretation of things is this: It doesn't matter what WE do or don't do, what we've done or not done - it only matters what GOD has done and what He is still doing.
It's the same idea of faith and prayer. I believe there is no such thing as "little" faith or "small" faith as we traditionally understand faith - there is just faith... (or no faith). And, if you have faith, you can (and will) ask God to do something, and the power of God is sufficient for every task (we see here it's not US doing the work, it's God.) Again, with prayer, we don't need to say just the “right” prayer or a long prayer or get all the words right... because it's WHO we are praying to that matters - HIS power is what goes to work when we pray, "God... (sigh) I... (um)..." God knows our heart and wants our heart, and, because we are coming to Him in prayer, that means He HAS our heart. And, The Good Father that He is, goes into action. His Holy Spirit even prays for us when we don't know what to pray and because we don't know how to pray (Romans 8:26-27).
All this to ask you to please listen to the podcast and hear my struggle as I try to "come out from under" all the world's lies and misunderstandings of the way I thought things were, into the light of the Truth that begins to break through all my hurt and shame the enemy planted in me. You could say that these conversations are helping to uproot the weeds of lies I've believed (and therefore experienced) all my life - I had the wrong perspective on things, so I kept "seeing" erroneous outcomes; I kept “seeing” things in life playout in ever more hurtful ways - I would inevitably see all of life in a negative light because that is what our enemy shines - negative light.
But God shines positive light - true light - that shows us what is really there, (not just shadows of things that aren't, and may not have ever been...)
I believe that listening to our conversations will do this same "illuminating" for you.
Now, we're still recording conversations and we're still adding conversations that we've recorded years ago to the website so there are more conversations coming that will add to, round out, fill in, and explore in ever greater depth and variation God's Truth, so stay tuned, and we'll let you know when a new conversation is posted so you can glean the heart of God (which is God's love for you and His messages of love for you) even more! We're working right now on, "What Bible Version Should I Read" and we'll be recording another conversation in 30 minutes that we'll be uploading in the future!
We're trying to get these conversations uploaded as fast as we can because we want to get the love the Holy Spirit has for you - TO YOU - into your hands, ears, and hearts as soon as possible... The truth I've heard/soaked in, surrendered to, continued to soak in, and believed (and it must be in that order) has changed my life - set me free - made me not only feel, but also confirmed that I AM, loved and belong - finally - by a family and to a family. We want that same blessing to be yours…
… but I did it again... I made it sound like this is something that you can get for yourself... (it's not what I mean and it's not the way God does it). What I should have written is, We want you to understand that you already have this blessing because God has already given you these gifts... God just wants you to surrender your defenses so that your heart will be open to receive what's in His hands for you already - that He's always been reaching out to give you - that the enemy doesn't want us to have and instead has given us all Shame, and Fear, and Pride, and you name it ... hurt... to keep our fists, and eyes, and hearts closed to receiving anything from anybody for fear of even more pain coming our way. If we shut out everything, we shut out even the good things... the good things of God.
We will have hurt in this world (John 16:33), but that's not the only thing we will have or can have in this world. (But hurt IS the only thing we'll have in this world if we shut out the - dare I say, dominant good - that we really do HAVE here. (1 Peter 4:12-19).
When we surrender and soak in the love of God for us, we begin to see in the right light that there is more love here than evil. When we finally surrender to and believe in what God has been saying to us all along, we are finally able to begin receiving all that God has already “switched on” in our lives that we just never saw or took advantage of. When we are finally able to see God's positive light, we see that we are at the center of God's love (and were the whole time) and rightly begin to understand that everything "bad" that has happened and is happening to us is simply either the enemy trying to take God's love away from us, or God trying to give us more of His love.
You see, we're going to understand that we are loved - always have been - always will be... and once we "get" that, once we are "born again" into this new life of understanding (scratch that) “reborn” into this new life of believing the Truth of what God is saying to us and has said over us/about us, we not only begin to "see" life as it was really meant to be, but we no longer live our lives here from a negative-only perspective - no longer living from a negative balance - God tips our scale to be ever positive and, though the hurts will most definitely still touch our lives - we will no longer experience those hurts from a perspective of being alone, or powerless, or ignorant, or unloved, or uncared about... No. Because Now, we believe that our Father will... IS... taking care of us, of “IT” - of whatever is going on in our life - because God is a Good Father and He knows what's going on in our lives even before we do. He is there... HERE... present and working in our lives for our good (Romans 8:28)...
I mean if God is for us, who, or what, can be against us (Romans 8:31)?
The Living Loved Life is all about this discovery and we want you to share in this new life of soaking in God's love for you and begin to live everyday loved - knowing that you are always loved by God now (instead of perhaps thinking that you were alone and unloved in this life and you had to just fend for yourself and if you wanted it YOU have to go and get it/take it from others...) Now you can REST from all that and just B.E. because God has, and is, and will provide for you - everything you need - and what we need the most is love. And God is reckless with His love, in that (God, who is love,) throws Himself out to all of us with abandon.
This morning my son, Orion, and I were talking about God's reckless love (and God can afford to be) because God is "Omni-rich." God has so much provision, so much love, so much grace, so much kindness, so much wisdom, so much gentleness, so much self-control, so much peace, so much patience, so much joy, so much faithfulness, and on and on, that He can, and does, just fling it all at us (dumps it all on us)... We have been so covered with His love - buried in His riches and in his richness - that I think at times the enemy suggests to us that God is really suffocating us (and it would be in our "best interest" to try to get away, run away, and stay away from all the "loves" (the "suffocations," the "limitations") of God - get away from all the different ways God "lavishes" His love on us (because, the enemy says, it's through all of that - all of what God is doing, and has said, and wants - we lose our freedom). And the more we listen to the enemy's lies the more our true freedom is bound away from us… But the Promise and fulfillment of God is: We will lose nothing by living God's way (Matthew 10:42 MSG), and God will return to us every true freedom that is safe and loving - for our good and God's glory.
One of the most surprising benefits of soaking in the love of God for me is that I'm starting to soak up what God wants (1 Timothy 2:4), because I want so badly (or goodly) for all of God's children (you and me) to continue growing in our true freedom WITH God and growing in our relationship WITH God, and these conversations are all about relationship WITH God.
I've discovered that our lives here don't really exist (or are not "alive" or are not “worth living”) apart from a constant, never-ending relationship with God from now into eternity... (but of course, God told us this already (John 15:5-8), but for some reason (Shame) these freedom-giving Truths never “connected” in my mind and heart, but believing these Truths has finally connected them to me and they are finally "getting in" to my heart through hearing them again and again in these conversations and in life.
So, listen to the podcast and track the change in me as I go from doubting, hurting, cynical, and questioning, to believing and being set free by God so that I could finally enjoy my relationship with Him instead of being angry with Him in our relationship before this. [Oh, yes, we still have a relationship with God before we knew about it, accepted it, surrendered to it, were encouraged by it, and set free in it - remember God chose us from before our beginnings and has committed to staying with us, even though we didn't know that before; even though we might not want relationship with Him now; and all through our lives when eventually we may (through the Spirit of God's continued presence and loving offerings into our lives), turn our faces and hearts back to God and finally Surrender to, and then Embrace, what we are beginning to see what was really best for us all along...]
We have over 125 conversations already recorded - yet to be published online (and they are coming) - with more to be recorded every week! Pray that we can get them out to you and the rest of the world to listen to and be loved and led by The Holy Spirit into all Truth - for God's glory and your benefit.
If you have any questions contact
The Living Loved Life Podcast
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It's great to have you as a friend and companion on our journey together with God!
Your brother in Christ,