Burnout

Choosing the Lamb of God Over Barabbas

Posted by on Feb 12, 2014 in Articles, Burnout | Comments Off on Choosing the Lamb of God Over Barabbas

“‘Barabbas’ means ‘son of the father,’ His very name is a kind of caricature of the ‘Son of the Blessed,’ and his character and actions present in gross form the sort of Messias whom the nation really wanted. He had headed some one of the many small riots against Rome which were perpetually sputtering up and being trampled out by an armed heel. There had been bloodshed, in which he had himself taken part (‘a murderer,’ Acts iii. 14). And this coarse, red-handed desperado is the people’s favourite, because he embodied their notions and aspirations, and had been bold enough to do what every man of them would have done if he had dared. He thought and felt, as they did, that freedom was to be won by the sword. The popular hero is as a mirror which reflects the popular mind. He echoes the popular voice, a little improved or exaggerated. Jesus had taught what the people did not care to hear, and given blessings which even the recipients soon forgot, and lived a life whose ‘beauty of holiness’ oppressed and rebuked the common life of men. What chance had truth and kindness and purity against the sort of bravery that slashes with a sword, and is not elevated above the mob by inconvenient reach of thought or beauty of character? Even now, after nineteen centuries of Christ’s influence have modified the popular ideals, what chance have they? Are the popular ‘heroes’ of Christian nations saints, teachers, lovers of men, in whom their Christ-likeness is the thing venerated? The old saying that the voice of the people is the voice of God receives an instructive commentary in the vote for Barabbas and against Jesus. That was what a plebiscite for the discovery of the people’s favourite came to. What a reliable method of finding the best man universal suffrage, manipulated by wirepullers like these priests, is! and how wise the people are who let it guide their judgments, or still wiser, who fret their lives out in angling for its approval! Better be condemned with Jesus than adopted with Barabbas.”

EXPOSITIONS OF HOLY SCRIPTURE, ALEXANDER MACLAREN, D. D., Litt. D.

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Being Salt and Light Without Guilt

Posted by on Apr 7, 2013 in Articles, Burnout | 2 comments

Being Salt and Light Without Guilt

Have you ever experienced a sigh of shame when you hear or read Christ’s words about salt and light?

“You are the salt of the earth. But if the salt loses its saltiness, how can it be made salty again? It is no longer good for anything, except to be thrown out and trampled underfoot. You are the light of the world. A town built on a hill cannot be hidden. Neither do people light a lamp and put it under a bowl. Instead they put it on its stand, and it gives light to everyone in the house. In the same way, let your light shine before others, that they may see your good deeds and glorify your Father in heaven.” Matt 5:13-16

May I attempt to relieve you of any burden?

Salt and light have one thing in common. Take a minute . . . can you think of what it is?

Both salt and light are. Their composition is fixed.

You can’t take the saltiness out of salt. The same applies also to light, you can divide the spectrum but you can’t change light into anything that is not inherently light.

This is why Jesus explains in the next verse:

“Do not think that I have come to abolish the Law or the Prophets; I have not come to abolish them but to fulfill them.” Matt 5:17

Within the words of Law and the Prophets are the unchangeable qualities of salt and light. Jesus can’t abolish that which is truth. He IS truth. He embodies the truth as first expressed in the Law and by the Prophets. You could say, Christ IS the Law and the Prophets.

Dearest Beloved, you cannot try to do salt and BECOME salt. You cannot try to do light and BECOME light. Salt and light have a fixed state of being. They are not a state of doing.

Once the Spirit of Christ resides within, you too embody the qualities of salt and light. You ARE the salt of the earth. You ARE the light of the world.

Rest in BEING.

Rejoice!

Binsey

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The Baptism of Water

Posted by on Mar 25, 2013 in Burnout | Comments Off on The Baptism of Water

The Baptism of Water

If I asked you, “What are we washing off with the Baptism of water? What had been added to us that needed to be washed away?”

You would answer correctly, “What was added in the garden! The deadly knowledge of good and evil!”

Yes. We’d all agree, evil must be washed away.

But can I ask you to consider that the knowledge of good must also be washed away?

John the Baptist cried to the so-called goodness experts, “And do not think you can say to yourselves, ‘We have Abraham as our father.’ I tell you that out of these stones God can raise up children for Abraham. The ax is already at the root of the trees, and every tree that does not produce good fruit will be cut down and thrown into the fire.” Matthew 3:9

The ax to all faux goodness had come! This exquisite blade discerns between the two sources of all behavior, the knowledge of good and evil and the Tree of Life:

The knowledge of good and evil promised to make us like gods but instead produced shame. It’s bullying drove us to cover-up an awareness too bare, too lacking.  “And he said, “Who told you that you were naked? Have you eaten from the tree that I commanded you not to eat from?” Genesis 3:11

Or, another source,

The Tree of Life, Christ, Who also stood in the garden we didn’t choose. But now, we can choose Him. He proclaims to those washed by His blood of their knowledge of good and evil, “You are already clean because of the word I have spoken to you. Remain in me, as I also remain in you. No branch can bear fruit by itself; it must remain in the vine. Neither can you bear fruit unless you remain in me I am the vine; you are the branches. If you remain in me and I in you, you will bear much fruit; apart from me you can do nothing.” John 15

Good isn’t something we inherit or can put our minds to becoming.

Good isn’t something we do, act, or are told we are by others.

Goodness is sourced from the Source! Source is everything in this new kingdom!   

True and good fruit springs from the Life of Christ within, naturally, organically, from the One Who gave life by giving His.  “This is how God showed his love among us: He sent his one and only Son into the world that we might live through him.” 1John 4:9

Dearest Beloved, doing good outside of the Spirit’s living leading is as deadly as doing evil.

When this is settled within, you will find no goodness burnout. You will find “His yoke is easy and His burden is light.” Matt 11:30

Rejoice!

Binsey

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Social Justice Burnout

Posted by on Mar 16, 2013 in Burnout | 1 comment

Social Justice Burnout

In 1986 I was 26 and very busy serving the needs of the teen moms in our rural county.  This younger me, the one sure of the answers, the one full of confidence and the one who possessed a small bit of talent had founded Bethesda Pregnancy Services and I was proud–of myself. 

My calling, as I called it, had begun much earlier when I gave my first ever impromptu speech as a high school freshman. My impromptu subject? Abortion. I had just five minutes to prepare but I knew exactly what I would say because I’d been pondering the abortion debate from a young person’s perspective.  I mounted the small platform, faced my peers, and made the case that Christians cannot oppose abortion without meeting the needs of those who choose abortion because they are needy. Righteousness and mercy mixed with reason–in my way of thinking–the perfect marriage. My speech teacher agreed.

When I quit work at 22 to raise our first child, the opportunity to practice what I’d preached became an organization which I called Bethesda Pregnancy Services because Bethesda means “House of Mercy.” Over the next four years, dozens of volunteers from several local churches came along-side and Bethesda became what I’d intended. We staffed a 24 hour hot-line, met needs for housing, clothing, food, information, and local services. Whatever the need, we did our very best to meet it. We even saved a few babies.

But after four years of running Bethesda Pregnancy Services, the day came. It always does for social justice Christians.

It hit me in the face like the contrast between life and death. It came in the form of a petite little seventeen year old that we’d taken care of when she was fifteen and carrying her first baby. Pregnant again, she wanted another baby shower, another this and another that and the cycle unbroken by repentance became a darkness filled coffin that I’d helped to build.

We mean well. We do. No one can fault the energy and vision with which we dispatch our own good plans. In meaning well we hope to do good. And in doing good we hope to re-frame the world’s perception of Christians but in time, our mixing the temporal with the spiritual muddies the waters and the face of Christ loses its distinct features. And after more time spent burning our social justice selves out, the face of Christ begins to look like every other go-to-get-something-god.

In the end, burnt-out and disillusioned, I had to confess my great plan didn’t work.

It never does.

It’s the treating of the sin cancer with pain reliever. The tumor still grows and spreads and takes over vital functions until death finally gets his way.

Let us not be ashamed of the Life Eternal that resides within. The miracle of the new birth should not, cannot, be muddied. It’s all we really have to offer that is life-giving. There, the death-cycle is broken once and for all by Him who gave His life once and for all.

So I’m thrilled that in a recent blog post on Holy Experience that the boy got all that Ann Voskamp had at the moment–the Children’s Bible. And I’m glad that even in lieu of the Gospel in print that we can preach unashamed, “Give your life once and for all to the God of Love and don’t look back. Leave your old life in the dust where it belongs and walk in newness of life.”

Rest in this one message Beloved!

For I am not ashamed of the gospel, for it is the power of God for salvation to everyone who believes, to the Jew first and also to the Greek. Romans 1:16

Rejoice!

Binsey

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Another “Truth” Unlearned

Posted by on Jan 24, 2013 in Burnout, Quotes | Comments Off on Another “Truth” Unlearned

Another “Truth” Unlearned

 

 

“God will never give you more than you He can handle.”

Unlearned the hard way, Binsey, Tree Thoughts Adminstrator

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When God Unbuilds You

Posted by on Jan 18, 2013 in Articles, Burnout | Comments Off on When God Unbuilds You

When God Unbuilds You

I feel your bad time. I’ve been there. The there that feels ragged and gut wrenching. You feel at times like your life is over.

You need comfort.

May I offer some?

You can only lose that which wasn’t eternal.

Seems harsh, right? Seems like you will forever have to live in a world undone, washed away, blown away, stolen.

What is left? When all is taken down is there anything left? Yes!

Your foundation which is Christ.

He is enough. Trust this for now. He IS enough.

And when He becomes enough you will find He is rebuilding a new structure, a glorious one; one you never dreamed you needed.

Your new foundation built on only Christ cannot be undone by the flood, the wind, the thief.

Rejoice!

Binsey, Tree Thoughts Administrator

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