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  • Upside Down Kingdom?

    I’ve been thinking
    that God’s kingdom is rather upside down and backwards. For one thing, up is
    down in His kingdom. The rich are poor and the poor are rich. The foolish
    confound the wise. And the one who wants to be great must be servant of all. We
    are advised to love our enemies and rejoice when they persecute, revile and
    slander us. We are to work to accumulate rewards in heaven and are not to worry
    about food or clothing…getting ahead. Now how does that fit with the social
    norm of being upwardly mobile?

    Maybe it is we who
    are upside down? And maybe backwards?

    Ya, the bit about
    backwards! There was a time when I was asking God why I seemed completely
    unmotivated—to do anything! I had no energy, and energy I learned comes from
    joy. I was unable to feel enough joy to motivate myself to do what I needed and
    wanted to do.
    How can I
    be a believer, have Jesus resident in my life, He who is the origin of joy, and
    not be able to experience enough of it to be able to function, at least to a
    minimal level? This is serious in light of Nehemiah 8:10, which says that the
    joy of the Lord is my strength. Not much strength…and the dip stick on my joy
    tank was reading mighty low! His response to my question was quick. I had no
    sooner asked than the following verse came to mind.

    “But he said to me, “My
    grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.”
    Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that
    Christ’s power may rest on me
    (2 Corinthians 12:9 NIV).

    Well, if that Scripture is true,
    I am in some way not accessing or availing myself of resources that I already
    have. His grace is sufficient, yet I certainly seem unable to boast about or
    glory in my infirmity! How can I be grateful to God for my
    infirmities? What needs to be different?

                 The focus.” What? Say again, God!

    God speaks without words and
    explains: “Your equation is backwards! My equation reads: Weakness
    + abiding in My joy = strength. Your equation reads: Strength + abiding in My
    power = joy.

    “You think I should flood your
    body with strength first, then your life would demonstrate the power of
    God and you could go about serving others, and that would produce joy. However,
    that would actually enable your flawed humanity!”

    “The belief that you must earn
    love and belonging is not the truth, but that is your foundation! If I gave you
    strength and power first, you would have the energy to continue to perform and
    do good works. You would think and feel that you were demonstrating the power
    of God, but you would do so from a foundational belief that love and belonging
    must be earned. Yes, good would happen, but you would also reproduce that
    foundation in others and perpetuate the erroneous belief that love and
    belonging go to those who serve Me.” Pause for a “Selah” moment.

    “I want to give you a new
    foundation, one built on truth. You were first conceived in My mind—I loved you
    then and you belonged to me then—only later were you conceived in your mother’s
    womb! I have given you love and belonging from the moment I conceived you in my
    mind! Nothing you can do will ever make Me love you more—or less!”

    This whole business of thinking
    God thoughts and living God values can turn your life upside down and really
    mess with your mind! It feels to me like God could make some big changes real fast.
    He has pulled up all the tent pegs, thrown all the feathers and fur out of the
    nest and sticks are poking me. I’ve read that eagles make the nest
    uncomfortable like that just before they make the young fly on their own. Change is in the wind. I have
    a suspicion some flying lessons are about to be scheduled; it’s a little unsettling!
    Exciting, but unsettling nonetheless.

    How has God messed you up lately?
    Share with us by dropping a note in the comment box.

    Blessings, Carol
    Author of The Mystery of Spiritual Sensitivity, Highly Sensitive
    and The Sassy Pants Series http://sassypantsco.blogspot.com