Friday, January 28, 2011


"I can't serve God until I've got it all together."

How many times have you heard someone say this?
It must be hundreds of times at least! 
Even this week I have heard it from old friends.

I can remember times in my own life when I felt this way too.

I thought, "I'm not good enough to be a Christian.  I'm not good enough to minister to anybody.  I'm not good enough to lift my hands in praise to God, or even to talk to Him alone in prayer."

In these times I was broken.

At some of these points in my life I had been broken by sins or mistakes.
There was a period of my life where I had lost myself in addiction.
Sometimes it was simply life's circumstances that broke me.

I can remember after the death of my mom I felt like I was the last person God would ever use to share His good news. 
I felt hopeless and broken then out of grief and out of anger at God for what I felt like should have been a miracle instead of a tragedy.  
I understand now that mom got her miracle after all.

In each of these times, no matter what brought me to the place of brokenness, I felt so inadequate.
How could God use me as His vessel?  
Would He even care enough to try?

The funny thing is that it was in those places of brokenness that I found God.

That is still true today.

When I feel guilt and shame from mistakes, God reaches out to me like I'm the prodigal son that He is welcoming back home.

When I am confused, He gently guides me with His quiet, still voice.

When I am hurting He wraps me in His loving arms and holds me as His child.

It is during the times when I feel broken, destroyed, inadequate, completely unworthy, that God becomes so real to me.

His greatest work in my life, whether it be healing, ministering to others, or acceptance of His love for me, always begins at those times of brokenness.

It is when we are broken that we fully learn to trust God.

When God is all we have to turn to we rely on Him with child like faith.
When all we know to pray is "fix it Jesus", we are giving God complete control.

Jesus is the ultimate example of someone being used by God during a time of brokenness.

Isaiah 53:5 says,"But He was pierced for our transgressions, He was crushed for our iniquities;
the punishment that brought us peace was on Him, and by His wounds we are healed. " (N.I.V.)

While He suffered and died on the cross, nails in His hands and feet, bleeding from torturous beatings, whippings, and a crown of thorns on His head; at a place of such brokenness, Jesus accomplished His greatest work.
In His time of being broken He saved the whole world.

When you find yourself feeling destroyed and utterly unusable by God, rely on Him.
Trust Him.
Talk to Him and let Him be real to you.
Surrender yourself completely so that He can heal and restore you.

It is during that time of healing and restoration in your brokenness that God is preparing you so that you can be used to help heal and restore others.

Our father God will take the things that try to destroy us and turn them into our testimony of His victory!

If you find yourself in a place of brokenness rest in our father's arms, trusting that He will give you beauty from your ashes.

As always remember:
God Loves You!
God Created You!
God Accepts You!

Until next time,

You Are More ~ Tenth Avenue North

Saturday, January 22, 2011

Come Home

"18 I will set out and go back to my father and say to him: Father, I have sinned against heaven and against you. 19 I am no longer worthy to be called your son; make me like one of your hired servants.’ 20 So he got up and went to his father.
   “But while he was still a long way off, his father saw him and was filled with compassion for him; he ran to his son, threw his arms around him and kissed him.
   21 “The son said to him, ‘Father, I have sinned against heaven and against you. I am no longer worthy to be called your son.’
   22 “But the father said to his servants, ‘Quick! Bring the best robe and put it on him. Put a ring on his finger and sandals on his feet. 23 Bring the fattened calf and kill it. Let’s have a feast and celebrate. 24 For this son of mine was dead and is alive again; he was lost and is found.’ So they began to celebrate." Luke 15:18-24 (N.I.V)

No matter where you find yourself right now, at this exact moment, your Father is looking for you.
He is waiting for you to appear from far away so that He can run to you!

He isn't looking for you to scold you, to abuse you, or to beat you into submission.
No, He is looking for you so that He can Love on You!

He wants to host a feast in YOUR honor!
Our father God is waiting to wrap you in His finest robe and place His nicest ring on your finger and sandals on your feet.

Gods wants to celebrate you!

He wants to welcome you home.
Do you feel like you are too far gone from Him?
You aren't.
You are never so far from Him that His arms cannot reach you!

Are you waiting to get your life cleaned up before you come home?
Don't wait.
God wants you just as you are....broken, hurting, lost, confused.

Take a step of faith and surrender yourself to the God who not only created and named each and every star in the sky but also knows the number of hairs on your head.
He's so massive yet knows us so intimately.

Just as the father in the parable of the Prodigal Son, our father God isn't waiting for you to come home as a perfect son or daughter so that He can be proud of you.

He is already proud of you!
You are His beautiful child no matter what mistakes you have made or hurts you have experienced.
He just wants you to open your heart to Him.

"Come Home" says the father.
"Come Home!"

How do I Come Home to God?

Let's start with the simple act of praying.
If you have never asked Jesus into your heart, or feel like you need to rededicate your life to Christ, then say this prayer:

Dear God,
Please forgive me of my sins.
I accept your Son Jesus into my heart as my Lord and Savior.
I believe that He is your Son; that He lived, was crucified, rose from the dead, and ascended to Heaven.
He did this to save me from all of my sins.
I want to come home to you and be a part of your family.
I love you and praise you.
Thank you for my Salvation through Jesus Christ.

If you prayed that prayer from your heart then you are saved.
No one can take that away from you.

Start living in the promises that God gives you.
Start talking to God. 
Open up to Him.
Tell Him how you feel, what you think, your good and your bad, the pretty and the ugly.
He already knows you and loves you without any conditions!

Read His word, not out of obligation, but because you want to get to know Him better.
Reading the Bible can be intimidating but don't give up.  
Start in the New Testament and learn about the life of Jesus, then you can read on from there.

Just be real with Him.

He is standing at the house looking for you.
Now is the time for you to walk toward Him.
Run toward Him.
His arms are outstretched for YOU.

You are never too young or too old.
You are never too rich or too poor.
You are never too much of a sinner or a saint.
And, you are never too Gay, Lesbian, Bi-Sexual, Transgendered, Queer, or Straight to come home.

Just Come Home.
Our father God is waiting.
Come Home.

If you prayed this prayer, have any other prayer requests, or just have questions about what you read here, please feel free to e-mail me through my profile on this blog.

Check out the "Sites that Lift us Up" section for great resources in your journey with God.

If tonight's post wasn't for you, please share it with someone who does need it.
Please, help someone else Come Home.

Always remember:
God Loves You.
God Created You.
God Accepts You.

Until next time,

OneRepublic - Come Home

Thursday, January 13, 2011

Rescue Me

This post is for the desperate.
It is for the broken hearted.
The outcast
You who are different
You who don't fit in

It is for the person who has made mistakes that you regret.
You who feel worthless
The hurting
The addict

If you who have ever looked at your life and thought, "Why am I here?",
This one's for you.

If you fit into any category listed above then guess what, YOU are God's kind of person!

Sure, that's easy for you to say...

...but you don't know the life I lead.

When Jesus walked on this Earth He hung out with society's lowest of the low.
He spent His time with prostitutes and lepers, not just with those who were "respectable" in the eyes of the church.

...but I don't have any talents. I'm nothing to God.

Jesus called ordinary men to leave their ordinary lives and follow Him into an extraordinary ministry that changed the course of history!  
He didn't go out and recruit the greatest philosophers and theologians of His day.
No, His disciples were made up of regular people such as fisherman and tax collectors.

...but I turned my back on God and Christianity years ago.

Even Peter, the man Jesus called "The Rock" denied Christ three times.
Yet in John 21: 15-17 Jesus asks Peter three times if he loves Him.  Three times Peter says that He does.  Then Jesus, completely forgiving the three denials by Peter, sends him into ministry by saying,"Feed my sheep."

...but I'm gay, lesbian, bi-sexual, transgendered, queer.

This is the one so many of us wrestle with for years even though the answer is so simple.
John 3:16-17 says," 16For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that WHOSOEVER believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.
 17For God sent not his Son into the world to condemn the world; but that the world through him might be saved.

There is absolutely no clause in this passage that says you have to become a heterosexual to be a Christian.
If you have been told you cannot be a Christian because of your sexual orientation or gender identity, hold to the promise of this scripture.

No matter who You are, our father God loves You so much that He sent His son to die for You.

The blood of Christ, along with the Grace and Mercy of God are like a life line thrown out to a person who is drowning at sea.

You don't have to drown any longer.
Grab hold to the promises of God through Christ Jesus!
His life line is for YOU!
He wants to SAVE YOU!
Hold to that lifeline of salvation and the promises that come with it.
Let God pull you closer to Him so that He can love on you, heal you, forgive you.
Let Him Rescue You!

You are never so low that God's life line cannot reach you.

There's one last "but" to address here...

...but I'm not hurting, or "different", or struggling with mistakes.
In this case, continue to live in the love of God and do as Jesus instructed Peter, "Feed my sheep."
Share this message of Grace, Hope, Mercy, Salvation, and Love with those who do need it.

By doing this you might just be throwing them the life line that they will finally grab on to.

As always remember:
God Loves YOU!
God Created YOU!
God Accepts YOU!

Until next time,


Sunday, January 9, 2011

Beautiful Scars

Sometimes scars can be deep, yet sometimes barely noticeable.
Sometimes they are recent.
Sometimes they are life long scars you carry for years.

No matter what type of scar you might see they all represent one thing:


Have you ever stopped to think that there is power in scars?

When Jesus was crucified he was nailed to the cross through his hands and his feet.
Jesus resurrected in a perfect heavenly body, except for one thing.
He still displayed the scars from His crucifixion.

Why is that?
He certainly had the power to completely remove the scars in His hands and feet yet they still remained.

The answer is so simple that it might astound you.

You see, after Jesus resurrected he appeared to His disciples but Thomas was not with them.
They told Thomas that they had seen him but he would not believe them until He saw Jesus for himself and could feel his nail scarred hands.

John chapter 20 tells the story like this," 24 Now Thomas, one of the Twelve, was not with the disciples when Jesus came. 25 So the other disciples told him, “We have seen the Lord!”    But he said to them, “Unless I see the nail marks in his hands and put my finger where the nails were, and put my hand into his side, I will not believe.”
 26 A week later his disciples were in the house again, and Thomas was with them. Though the doors were locked, Jesus came and stood among them and said, “Peace be with you!” 27 Then he said to Thomas, “Put your finger here; see my hands. Reach out your hand and put it into my side. Stop doubting and believe.”
 28 Thomas said to him, “My Lord and my God!”
 29 Then Jesus told him, “Because you have seen me, you have believed
As painful as the crucifixion must have been for Jesus, He knew the importance of keeping the scars visible as a testimony to who He was.

Fast forward about 2000 years.

It is a cold wintry day here in Denver, Colorado.

I am here attending the Gay Christian Network's annual conference.

The low tonight is in the single digits which is much colder then this southern boy is used to.
Not to mention the snow that just keeps falling.

Despite the blustery conditions my heart is so warm.

At the conference each year there is a "sharing night" where the attendees speak about what God has done for them through this event.

As person after person shared their stories in this open mic night I was moved to tears.

Hearing the stories of pain and hurt, sometimes the equivalent of abuse from churches, or families, or life long friends broke my heart.
Each person sharing had their own wounds that they bared for all to see.
There was one common thread that every person had in common.
That thread is healing.

God has been working in the lives of his beautiful gay, lesbian, bi-sexual, and trans gendered children and bringing them healing; turning their wounds into scars.

As they shared their stories the chains of bitterness and resentment fell to the floor, replaced by grace, mercy, and forgiveness for those who hurt them.

Each testimony shared led to more healing for all who were present in the room.

At this moment amongst tears of joy, thoughts of deep pain and intense healing, I thought back to the scars that Jesus bore.

He kept His scars of what to most would seem like His darkest hour visible for all to see.
Those scars became a living example of His testimony that caused even the doubting Thomas to believe and declare that Jesus was in fact alive.

In that same way the scars of our past remain so that others will see us and know that we have new life!

Don't fall into the traps of guilt and shame about past mistakes.
Don't allow yourself to live in resentment and hatred against those who have hurt you.

Instead, Rejoice!

Those wounds that once seemed to consume and cripple you are now Beautiful Scars, each one a testimony of the astounding healing power of Jesus Christ in your life.

Remember that God Loves You.
He Created You.
He Accepts You.

Until next time,