Friday, June 25, 2010

Also Known As...

We are fooling ourselves if we think that people are not observing our lives beyond the platform. Many dancers don glorious garments, display perfectly coiffed hairstyles, and have rehearsed the answers in advance in response to praise received from those who witness the dances ("Well, bless the Lord!" "No, don't thank me, thank God!" --While inwardly relishing in the comments made to them about anointing and skilled technical execution and repeating them to all who will listen...). Away from the spotlight, who are we, really?

There will always be critics. The Word declares that we are blessed when persecuted for the sake of righteousness. What if the things being said about us are true? Are we also known as money-hungry? Mean-spirited? Difficult to work with? Unfaithful? Argumentative? Controlling? Manipulative? Divisive? Selfish? While none of us may want to confess to these areas of weakness, if we keep hearing people say the same things about our character over and over again, we need an emergency appointment with God so that he is able to give us a much needed transplant.

Our good works should be known by those we work with, as well as to our surrounding friends, families, and communities. We cannot be consumed with defending ourselves against those who persecute us without cause. Any character flaw that is not submitted to the Lord's correction will affect our ministries in the long run. As much as it is possible, we should seek to have a good name as a byproduct of living lives submitted to the Lord. A well-crafted advertising campaign is not what makes a great name. Let's aim to serve the Lord both in word and deed.

(New King James Bible Version)

Proverbs 22:1
A good name is to be chosen rather than great riches, loving favor rather than silver and gold.

Ecclesiastes 7:1

[The Value of Practical Wisdom] A good name is better than precious ointment, and the day of death than the day of one’s birth

Ephesians 2:10
For we are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand that we should walk in them.

Titus 1:16
They profess to know God, but in works they deny Him, being abominable, disobedient, and disqualified for every good work.

Tuesday, June 1, 2010

GPS: God's Positioning System

Today, most modern cell phones and vehicles are equipped with GPS. The idea is that you will never be lost because you have step-by-step instructions on how to get to your destination. We can choose not to follow the prescribed instructions with the possibility of losing our way. GPS systems are not infallible; however, as they cannot anticipate changes in the road, detours, accidents, or other unexpected delays. God is not like that, He knows where we are going, how to get us there, and what is to come along the road.

Since God's Positioning System is best, why is it that so many in movement ministry are striving to compete, compare, and contend with one another? Many dancers are looking at websites of others and trying to "top" what they see. Others attend conferences and events and instead of being inspired, become envious and attempt to create the next "big thing" in dance ministry. Many more look at merchandising, clothing, books, seminars, and speaking engagements as a way to build a larger marketing base and make a quick buck. While the Lord gives us witty inventions, if we are only producing product to make the largest profit, but are not making a Godly impact on lives, who really benefits?

Beyond the spotlight, rivalries in dance ministry begin in the simplest form. One desires the dance ability of a fellow minister. Another feels skilled enough to choreograph pieces, but had not sought the power of the anointing in their lives. People follow leaders who they curse instead of bless, but hang on for the benefits and perks. Moments of disagreement become fractures in the Body when rumors are spread and speculation runs rampant via telephone, email, text, and social networking. Meetings to discuss the shortcomings of leadership develop into plans to overthrow the leader in rebellion. Division pits organizations against each other and breeds cultish behavior among dance ministry followers.

Inwardly, dancers begin to desire to be "the best," and "the most anointed," or "the expert," boasting as "the most requested," as several in the ministry clamor for positions of power. In the name of "Jesus," people invite themselves to events and demand to have their images placed on conference marquees. Trying to find common ground, others will lobby to convince others that Kingdom is about working together with them as they hold a special access code to our destinies.

When we sincerely serve the Lord with a pure heart, obey His Word, and give Him our very best, He will show us where we are to be positioned. Just as we learn to position ourselves through technical training to build strength, proper posture, and alignment, the Lord will position us successfully to prevent injury, correct us when needed, and point us in the right direction.

(New King James Version)

Job 34:24-25
He breaks in pieces mighty men without inquiry, and sets others in their place. Therefore He knows their works; He overthrows them in the night, and they are crushed.

Psalm 62:4
They only consult to cast him down from his high position; they delight in lies; they bless with their mouth, but they curse inwardly.

Psalm 75:7
But God is the Judge: He puts down one, and exalts another.

Daniel 4:25
They shall drive you from men, your dwelling shall be with the beasts of the field, and they shall make you eat grass like oxen. They shall wet you with the dew of heaven, and seven times shall pass over you, till you know that the Most High rules in the kingdom of men, and gives it to whomever He chooses.

James 4:1-3
Where do wars and fights come from among you? Do they not come from your desires for pleasure that war in your members? You lust and do not have. You murder and covet and cannot obtain. You fight and war. Yet you do not have because you do not ask. You ask and do not receive, because you ask amiss, that you may spend it on your pleasures.