Living Light

Stirring The Deep


Follow Your Desires

Follow Your Desires

Psalm 37:4 Delight yourself also in the Lord,
And He shall give you the desires of your heart.

When we abandon our self-will and desire God to govern all that we are, He takes over and transitions us into an eternal creation filled and governed by Him. This magnificant new life is one of rest as God does all things in and through us. It is full of power because God is orchestrating and performing all things for us. Psalm 57:2 When He takes over His desires become our desires, thus we live by following our desires. Here I talk in more detail about this blessed gift and life.


Man of War & Man of Love

Man of War

Man of Love

Exodus 15:3 The Lord is a man of war; The Lord is His name

When I think of war, I think of killing and destruction – is this our God?

Deuteronomy 32:39 ‘Now see that I, even I, am He, And there is no God besides Me; I kill and I make alive; I wound and I heal; Nor is there any who can deliver from My hand.

1 John 4:8b for God is love.

God is love. All that He does is in love. How can war and the pain it causes be about love? Can the two really co-exist? In regards to this topic, we often read about God’s holiness and justice, but here I want to look at His love. Like the perfect parent with their children, there is perfect justice but also pefect love. Here are some of my thoughts on it . . .

There are two different accounts demonstrating this man of war I’ve been thinking about:

Many wars directed by God occurred as the Israelites moved into the promise land. But the motive of these wars was rooted in love because God is love – as we’ll see. God’s plan of reconciliation included Christ being manifested in a sinful body, like our own, so He could be the sacrifice that stood in our place uniting us back to God. God revealed Himself to the nation Israel – and it was through that lineage Jesus would come.

As God’s people moved into the land He gave them, He instructed them to wipe out the nations before them. He did this because the other nations were so corrupt that if they remained they would corrupt His people as well. Judges 2:3 Once taken in by other nations and their gods, they would be deceived and lost. And the state of the world at the flood of Noah would happen once again. He wiped out the nations to protect His people, and those He left were used to test them. Judges 2:21-22 Through Abraham God’s family came – not of the physical seed, but through the promised Seed of Christ. Romans 4:16 He had to preserve His people enough so that through them He could manifest the life of Christ to save us all. Those nations died, so His people could survive, so we could be delivered through His son, Jesus. That is love. Joshua 23:3, Deut 7:16

What may seem unfair, unjust or even unloving to us in this sliver of history was an act of love in the span of eternity. There is a much bigger plan and purpose, and that purpose was crafted in love because God is love. God did what was required to protect His family. The thought comes to mind – what would you do if your family’s life was in danger?

Second, wars of God were a result of the actions of the wicked, whether unbelievers or God’s people. When people go their own way, there are repercussions. Joshua 24:20. In the Bible, we see over and over how people became so wicked that they destroyed themselves and others, which happens when people follow their own will. God created mankind to walk and abide with Him in love. When they don’t, spiritual death is manifested. Physical death, in these wars of God, is the materialization of the state of their souls.

In God’s infinite wisdom, He does what is best. Like those who died in the flood of Noah, it was better to end the wickedness, than let it continue on causing more damage and pain. Genesis 6:5 They weren’t getting better, but worse. God knew the end to the path they were on. If you see a suffering animal and there is no hope for recovery, what is the most merciful and loving action to take? In the bonds of evil, people suffer and suffer greatly and the harm they do to others is extensive. God sees the beginning and the end – for any one life, He knows best. And He does what is best for all mankind.

A side note . . . we need to learn that only by being united to God is there life. Apart from Him is death. To abide in true life and love, which God desires with us, we needed to possess our own will. Robotic forced love isn’t love. But now there is people’s free will to contend with. In our free will, God laid out the choices before us Deut. 28, 30:19 God designed this life to operate in a certain way. He told us there is a path that leads to life, which is following His will, and a path that leads to death, which is following our will or anyone else’s other than Him. There are consequences to going our own way. If we are separated from Him, then we spiritually die because we were created to be united to Him in love. The fact that our bodies return to the dust from which they came is nothing compared to spiritual death.

I think one of the main reasons we are here on this earth and experiencing the evil we do is to learn that following our self-will doesn’t work. Following the will of God is the path of life, which we also get a taste of on this earth when we walk in His ways. This truth is what we all have to learn so that we willing follow God’s will and thus abide with Him in love. When people chose to follow their own will then they are making their own judgments about what is good and evil. (represented by the tree of knowledge of good and evil) They are driven by their own understanding, which is limited and wrong. Spiritual death is manifested. However, when we follow God’s will and are led by His Spirit, we aren’t making the judgments God is. (the tree of life) We are following His lead and therefore walk in life because His ways are life. In order to abide with Him in love and freedom, we have to choose His will, not ours, and that means we have to learn the difference and the consequences of both. Thus, this life here on earth were we are seeing both played out. Only by being united to Him is their true life.

God knew we would go astray. That is why the plan was always life in Christ Jesus and to provide a way in which we would be a part of Him. Because when His Spirit is in us, we live according to His will because that is who we are. 2 Peter 1:4

I believe in the end when we see clearly – we will see how every act of God, a Man of War, was the ultimate act of love.

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Mountain Top Reflections

Mountain Top Reflections


We live in a hilly area of California. The other day I took a walk up to a high point in our neighborhood that overlooks the valley below. It provided a respite from the busyness of life; a place to be still and quiet in God’s presence, and to hear His voice.

As I looked over the mountains, the beauty and complexity of God’s creation amazed me. I thought, what a peaceful and revitalizing time it must have been for Jesus to escape from the multitudes to a mountain to be alone with God, to be still in His Father’s presence, to pray, to reflect. Did He just sit there and feel the gentle breeze across His skin as I am now?

As I looked over the expanse, I reflected upon God’s creation and all He has given us to enjoy, and the perfection of how everything works in harmony. But then a sharp pain pierced my soul as I thought about how many people never consider God and what He has done – how for so many years I didn’t. As my eyes fell upon the houses built into the mountainside, I thought about how people look to their own strength, provision and protection, something I’ve often done. They think they provide and protect when in a moment the God they forget could make those mountains crumble – those mountains they feel so secure upon in their houses – houses full of their precious treasures like their spouse, children, and pets.

Who are we to think we protect or provide? How quickly we could be crushed? Haven’t we learned from floods, earthquakes, fires, and hurricanes that we aren’t in control? That we are dependent on God’s mercy? What arrogance to think we are the providers, protectors, sustainers of life . . . that we are in control. How arrogant to forget our God when His beauty, complexity and order are all around us are screaming about His power, might and love. Without His mercy, we would all perish.

When Jesus was on the mountain – did He think a similar thing? Did He think about all He has done for us and all He was about to do and yet now we continue to turn our back on Him, reject Him, think we know better, don’t heed His Words, don’t spend time with Him, and don’t trust Him?

How sad it must make Him even now, when He has done so much for us, and we continue to reject His true lordship and kingdom in our lives. He has created a world that reveals His wisdom, perfection and love. Yet, we don’t exalt Him but we exalt ourselves. Even though we continue to deny Him and go our own way, He continues to preserve us. Even for those who do intimately know Him, how often we slip into thinking we are in control. We get consumed with worry, when He has done so much for us. God forgive us.

This mountain top experience was very humbling. And yet, it was full of powerful moments of praise for all that God has done, does do and will do. God’s love and patience overwhelms me.

May we daily have mountain top reflections that puts our perspective in the right place and reminds of us who we are, who our God is, and how much He loves us and pours His mercy upon us and that it is His work and not ours to be exalted.

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Does Your Life Exalt God?

Does Your Life Exalt God?


Hosea 11:7 My people are bent on backsliding from Me. Though they call to the Most High, None at all exalt Him.

Calling upon God is easy. Exalting Him isn’t. Exalting Him means we truly believe and act on the truth that He is God, sovereign in all situations, loves us deeply and passionately, and has power and might in all our circumstances. That He is Almighty God, Creator, Deliver, Protector, Provider, and Comforter. That He is our everything. That His Word is true and we show our belief by living and speaking it with conviction.

How many of us truly live by these truths? How many of us truly believe He is who He says He is to us? What do our actions show? Who are we attributing power, strength and influence to in our lives? Who are we truly honoring? Whose truth are we living by? Whatever or whoever is the answer to these questions is who we exalt.

We exalt God when we look to His wisdom and not the world’s. Whether our health, job, finances, relationships, or anything else in our lives, there is a way and wisdom of the world and there is His. Whichever we seek and trust is what we exalt.

Giving into worry, living in fear, succumbing to discouragement and despair, dwelling in anger and resentment, and taking a passive stance in life are a few of the signs that we aren’t exalting God. Though some more than others, we all experience these emotions. We experience them because we don’t trust Him and we don’t trust Him because we lack a deep intimate knowing of Him.

Therefore the path to exalting God with our lives is one of drawing near. When we cultivate an intimate relationship with God in truth, then our faith grows and these symptoms, which arise out of a lack of faith, start to dissipate. It isn’t instant, but a process over years as He takes center stage in every area and in every way. Our part is to constantly draw close to Him. Learn about Him and His ways. Listen to Him. When we do the natural outcome is trust – and when we trust we exalt.

Examine your own life. What or who are you honestly exalting in the various areas of your life?

It is a constant temptation for all of us, battling the world’s pull on our beliefs and trust. The world bangs at our door calling out to us to trust in its schemes and philosophies about what leads to a good life. True life on every level is found in God.

I want to exalt God with my entire life. So I am going to continue to draw near to Him in truth, in His Word so that my confidence will grow in Him. And I chose to dwell and meditate on His truth not this world’s philosophies. Freedom and power flood our lives when we trust Him. I have tasted these gifts in my life and it compels me to keep pushing into a deeper union with Him; a union where He is exalted above all else.

Psalm 21:13 Be exalted, O LORD, in Your own strength! We will sing and praise Your power