Is Charlie Sheen Winning (Duh!)…or Losing It?

Monday, March 8, VH1 aired a TV special entitled “Charlie Sheen: Winning…Or Losing It?

Dr. Drew Pinsky — reality TV’s most popular medical professional (most popularly known from Celebrity Rehab) — hosted the show.

The show went in on Charlie Sheen.

Dr. Drew and other expert physicians, etc. who “have never met or treated Charlie Sheen” spent an hour dissecting his recent behavior.

They talked about how irresponsible he’s been. How dangerous his behavior is. And about all of the medical terms for his condition. They specifically highlighted how his behavior can be characterized as “hypo-manic.”

The list of symptoms for the condition were spot on with Sheen’s recent behavior, which they made sure we were aware of by craftily plugging in clips from his latest interviews and media appearances.

His problems were impossible to miss. Drew and the other medical experts were successful in exposing just how bad Sheen’s situation is.

Thirty minutes into the show I don’t know if there was a viewer in the audience who could deny Dr. Drew’s hypothesis: Charlie Sheen is hypo-manic.

And, then…

The show basically ended.

Dr. Drew and the others stressed the need for Sheen to have some sort of intervention.

But… none of them — including Dr. Drew — seemed to be too interested in taking serious steps to help Charlie Sheen or connecting with someone who could.

They seemed fine with diagnosing him from afar and giving him a lofty and general prescription.

But no one seemed to be too interested in getting their own hands dirty and taking steps toward real solutions for Sheen.

This last Thursday, a dear friend reminded us of the humility of God.

He showed us how in Genesis God began a pattern of reaching into human history to correct our most destructive problem: pride.

Though we spit in God’s face, and try this life thing on our own (though we were never meant to succeed at life without God), God didn’t just sit up on His lofty throne in heaven and watch us bury ourselves under an unconquerable amount of sin.

In the humblest act ever (literally ever), after accurately defining our problem, God Himself decided to become our solution.

He sent His Son (Himself) to absorb the consequences of our actions. On the cross — Christ died the spiritual death that we all deserve and paid for the spiritual debt that we all owe God as a result of our sin.

And after His Son successfully completed this mission (which we know because of His resurrection), He sent His Holy Spirit (Himself) to hold private interventions for us.

His Holy Spirit shows us our own faults, shows us the consequences of our lives of pride, and then walks with us through the recovery process, which begins and is guaranteed success by faith in Jesus Christ.

He also calls out to the whole world through those of us who He is helping to walk through His rehab program (commonly referred to as sanctification) and in countless other “random” events and circumstances in our lives.

The Points:

  • If you don’t trust in Christ – let this be your intervention – start asking questions and get to find out about this God who loves you – loved you enough to come down and get you.
  • If you do trust in Christ: I challenge you to start loving folks hands on. Don’t just diagnose folks and walk away. Share with them the love that you’ve come to know. You be the one to lovingly tell them the truth and introduce them to the solution. Put away the pride, put on the love. And be active – just like our sweet rehabilitator.

allow me to reintroduce myself, part II.

In Part Uno, I established that in Christ we are fully accepted by God, due to the hard work Jesus put in and the lack of work we put in. The only work we put in according to Jesus in John 6:29 is “that you believe in him whom he has sent.

So why in the known universe do we strive so hard to be accepted by God? 

We say in our self-righteousness that we must appease God’s wrath apart from Jesus Christ. “How do I do that, die_dd?” Well, I’m glad you asked. You do that by trading bad works for good works. You do that by going to bible study everyday, serving at every church event, teaching every bible study, accepting any offer to do anything for Jesus instead of spending time with Jesus.

The anti-gospel of goodworks?

None of those things are wrong, but they can become wrong. “How do you know that die_dd?” Again, I’m glad you asked, because I was describing myself. I go to bible studies everyday, I teach everyday, I serve everyday, I, I, I, I, I – but I do not spend time with Jesus as I should.

I’m truly starting to realize that I am so identified with Christ that in his death I am also dead on a cross & that my life is not my life but his living through me; reconciling me to his security & his identity with the Father.

I have been crucified with Christ. It is no longer I who live, but Christ who lives in me. And the life I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me.” – Galatians 2:20

Jesus, who is absolute acceptance, did not waiver because of what people thought of him. Jesus sought solitude with the Father and found joy through the suffering he experienced. Like Jesus, we should find solitude with the Father daily. We should allow God to remind us of who we are in Christ.

External forgiveness, internal rejection?

No matter what you do externally you are forgiven. People stabbed him, spat at him, lied on him, rejected him, defiled him, & brutally crucified him … yet he said, “Father forgive them for they know not what they do“.

But, if you reject the Holy Spirit internally, nothing you do externally will be forgiven. Jesus said that if you continuously blaspheme the Spirit, you will not be forgiven because the Spirit leads you to the salvation found in Christ.  [upon repenting and believing in Jesus, you are freely given the Holy Spirit as the guarantee of your salvation (eph 1:13-14 , eph 4:30)]

So now if you externally offend someone, disappoint someone, fail someone, or hurt someone it matters little if they forgive you because the Holy Spirit within you cries out that you are forgiven. You should be perfectly comfortable in solitude but not be a hermit. You should be perfectly comfortable around crowds but not be a socialite. Find time to reintroduce the identity you have through Jesus by finding solitude with the Father.

weighing guilt.

guilt and conviction are two totally different things.

there was a young man who walked backward and forward everyday, head slumped heavily as if his thoughts were weighing it down. all the way down. he dressed himself in his regret, washed his face with his emotions. day after day, he suited himself up in the guilt of his past. always walking forward, then walking backward.

his mind, body and soul weighed too much for him and he sat down on a sidewalk bench. his palms became a suction cup to his face and he began to weep. mumbling to himself, “i can’t believe i smoked that weed when i promised to stop last week. why did i invite her over when i knew it was over between us? i can feel her turmoil and brokenness permeating through my bones, wearing them out. i feel so heavy carrying this guilt with me each and everyday! i can’t continue to be reminded of what i’ve done! i need to move forward! i can’t do this anymore!”

silence arose in the atmosphere and these words settled into his spirit:

guilt leaves you, by yourself, to feel bad, with no resolve. it leaves you dwelling on and thinking about things you shouldn’t be dwelling on or thinking about. it leaves you stagnate, not knowing what your next move should be. it leaves you pondering and that guilt festers within, leaving you to feel bad. it leaves an imaginary weight on you that you think is apart of you, weighing you down. guilt builds a barricade before you, forcing you to never continue on.

however, conviction punctures and moves you. it literally moves you to repentance. and that repentance moves you a step further to change. not looking back. but moving forward. not pondering or dwelling, but rejoicing. not feeling weighed down but lifted up. and conviction doesn’t leave you. instead it comforts you because conviction is inspired, motivated and powered by the Holy Spirit. and the Holy Spirit was sent to comfort us. the Holy Spirit moves with us and not without us because the Holy Spirit is IN us (those who believe in Jesus). therefore, we will never be left alone feeling bad, blaming others. instead, we will be moved to turn away from what we once did. never turning back, feeling bad. because guilt died when the cross went up. when Jesus ascended. it was finished. then came a new beginning.

guilt brings blame.

conviction brings change.

blessed are the poor.

june 2nd, 2010. russel de pena (left) and ronald bell sr. (right) each received their licenses to preach the gospel from the pastoral-eldership (is that the correct term? lol) at good hope missionary baptist church. it was a glorious evening. most to all of the sons of hope (ministry that serves the church to equip those who feel the call to preach) were present and in support of the brothers. it was great. the word of God was proclaimed. russ hit that acts 1:8. ron on that psalm 54.

daviddenniskathyzach, and i then decided to head to subway for a quick fellowship action. after the lazy workers closed the place half an hour early on their own will God sovereignly closed the subway off of scott early, we then trucked to the one off of ost by jack in the crack. we got our food around 9:50 (thanks zach lol). since the joint closes shop at 10 we decided to try to eat inside the dining area of jack in the crack. that was sovereignly closed. we then posted up outside and ate and chatted.

then came eric johnson. poor in finances but rich in spirit. he asked me and zach what our shirt said. we told him, “maGoh … it stands for man after God’s own heart.” eric replied, “oh i’m saved too.” was he. what started as a humble plea for help, quickly turned into practical preachingtransparent testimonyfamiliarizing himself with family, and an overall pure display of joyful joy that stems from God’s grace.

he preached a word to me, and the rest of us i’m sure, but i can only speak for myself, and i was convicted. he spoke of premarital sex. worry. God’s divine plan of reconciliation. patience. God’s creation. etc. the man PREACHED! without a license 😉

full of love. honesty. zeal. hope. patience. faith. peace. is the Holy Spirit that resides in eric johnson – and us too!

– pics by brother in christ david dawkins. check out his tumblr and his contributions to the city here.

you are not alone.

she sat still in a fragile wooden chair. chipped paint. unsteady balance. uncomfortable comfort. alone. she sat still. eyes welled with lonely tears. droplets secreting one. by. one. single tears rolling down her full cheeks. she sat still. filled with alone. she was a slave to loneliness.

she stood up in her lonely atmosphere. wiped her face. stretched her ligaments into the direction of her front door to invest some time in a brisk walk through the breezy forest where her shelter was established. all alone. her feet trekked a sandy trail that she had never explored before. she was in search of another body in the parameters of her shelter.

she was startled in the midst of her trekking. her eyes captured the image of a man. a man of God sent from God. as he spoke to her, he slowly approached her and said “woman, why are your eyes saturated in lonely liquids?” he possessed a strong and powerful voice. his words were filled with Truth she had never heard. filled with Comfort her wooden chair could not keep. she responded, “i am alone. i have been alone, living alone, all of my life. my single tears are my only visitors. what is your name, sir?” the man spoke his name solidly in her ear and said, “my name is Peter. and you are not alone.”

she wore confusion on her weary face and shyly said, “but i am.”

he replied, “this i say to you is the Truth. you are not alone. do you believe Jesus is Lord?”

she faintly said, “yes. i do. but i am still alone.”

he said to her, “when the clouds received Jesus and seated Him in heavenly places next to the Father, did you miss the sweet Words He spoke into your ear? He said to you and i … and all of humanity that He will pour His Holy Spirit on all humanity and in us, that His Spirit will be our Comforter when our fleshly minds force us to think we are alone. He lives within you. He is everything and all you need. as i mentioned before, you are not alone.” he spoke Life into her.

she was stuck in silence. immovable. she closed her eyes. immediately, she felt a feeling she had never felt before. an embrace. cradled in arms. encircled by the Spirit she lost hope in. her muscles were weakened, still, she was able to smile. her tears fell … accompanying one another. two. by. two. by. three. by. four. they rolled.

she separated her eye lids. her eyes were glossed by her newly Comforted tears. but they no longer held the image of Peter. he had gone away. with no words of farewell. he left. without a trace. she lifted her head and looked to the sky. she saw the clouds forming together, closing an entrance that had been detached. cradling a figure that was familiar to her.

she was no longer alone for the Holy Spirit dwelled within her. and she trekked back to her home. in His embrace. in His Love. in His peace. reminded, by Peter, who Jesus is and the promise He sweetly spoke into her ears.

His Spirit was poured into her. and she felt alive again.

*there is no such thing as “catching the Holy Spirit“. we are caught (chosen) by the Holy Spirit, and securely sealed by the Holy Spirit. as easy as it is to catch something, we can easily drop it, lose it, and/or forget about it. He (the Holy Spirit) lives within those who call on the name of the Lord. you cannot drop, lose, or forget about what is in you. receive this Gift in which we do not deserve. He is extending His Grace … for the price of Love. why pass it up? choose to live. in Him. with Him. and for Him.*

If You Know Better, You’ll Do…Worse?

*please forgive me for the length in advance*


“If you know better, you’ll do better”

Now, I realize I can come across as a jerk sometimes (probably because I am a jerk and Jesus is working on me), and so I try to be careful and correct with what I say when speaking to others. With that said, I have to respectfully disagree with this statement. First, let’s peep the scripture:

Romans 7:7  What shall we say then? Is the law sin? Absolutely not! Certainly, I would not have known sin except through the law. For indeed I would not have known what it means to desire something belonging to someone else if the law had not said, “Do not covet.” 7:8 But sin, seizing the opportunity through the commandment, produced in me all kinds of wrong desires.

Okay, backing up and checking the context: Paul in this letter to the Church in Rome addresses core issues of Christianity and comes to address the issue of the Law. The Law was what God wanted us to know what to do right, however the author Paul says that with the knowledge of the Law (what to do right) came sin (doing wrong). Paul is saying when he knew better, he did worse. His (and our) own inherent sinfulness cannot do better, even when we know better. Perhaps I should say especially when we know better.

“Okay, so if when we know better,  we’ll do worse and not better, how do we do better?”

The issue is in the statement – the charge is for us to DO  something better in order to be better. But the text shows that we can’t be better…we’re evil. We’re sinners. Paul himself explains that he wouldn’t have known about doing bad until he saw what he should have been doing right. So it would seem we’re in trouble. We know plenty of good, but how good are we doing?

Wait…ah here we go.

But what about someone who was and is Good? Good as in perfect? Who lived a perfect life? Who is God in the flesh? Yeah! #Jesus! He lived the life we could never live and died the death we were supposed to die so that upon changing our minds about our sin and holding on to Him we could be saved from eternal punishment and given perpetual placement in His precious presence (whassup alliteration) by merit of Himself and everything He has done.

He (God) who knew better DID more than we could ever imagine. He died, under the wrath of Himself on a cross so that we may have His righteousness. Upon repentance and belief in this fact, He (God) dwells inside of us so that we may live a lifestyle of continually doing better not by our power, but by the power of Him who dwells within us (God).

So let me go out on a limb and say if you know better, you’ll do worse. However, God knows best. He knows you need a Savior, so He sent Himself (Jesus Christ) to save you.  You won’t do better until you know Jesus.

Do you know Him?

Captivate Us

I heard this song on 89.3 and just had to share. Enjoy:

Your face is beautiful
And Your eyes are like the stars
Your gentle hands have healing
There, inside the scars

Your loving arms, they draw me near
And Your smile, it brings me peace
Draw me closer, oh, my Lord
Draw me closer, Lord, to Thee

Captivate us, Lord Jesus
And set our eyes on You
Devastate us with Your presence
Falling down

And rushing river, draw us nearer
And holy fountain consume us with You
And captivate us, Lord Jesus, with You

Your voice is powerful
And Your words are radiant bright
And in Your breath and shadow
I will come close and abide

You whisper love and life divine
And Your fellowship is free
Draw me closer, oh, my Lord
Draw me closer, Lord, to Thee

Captivate us, Lord Jesus
And ser our eyes on You
Devastate us with Your presence
Falling down

And let everything be lost in the shadows
Of the light of Your face
Let every chain be broken from me
As I’m bound in Your grace

For Your yoke is easy, Your burden is light
You’re full of wisdom, power and might
And every eye will see You

Captivate us, Lord Jesus
And set our eyes on You
Devastate us with Your presence
Falling down

And rushing river, draw us nearer
And holy fountain consume us with You
Captivate us, Lord Jesus, with You
And captivate us, Lord Jesus, with You

Captivate us with You

Christians Gone Wild: Only Dumb People Hear From God 1 Cor. 2,3

This is out of our Bible Study Series entitled:  “Christians Gone Wild.”  Arrogant and worldly Christians usually trust their own wisdom and the wisdom from popular books, authors, celebrities, and even pastors.  We brag about our what we know and who we follow.  Our affirmation and our sense of well being comes from this stuff.  Through the Holy Spirit God calls for us to be “dumb” so that we can be wise through Him.  Be empowered by Jesus!

Radio Reconcile


Radio Reconcile

My Life as a Step Show

Alpha Step. Omega Step. Kappa Step. Sigma StepIf you don’t know, that’s the opening of Kanye West’s School Spirit off of what is argued as his greatest album, College Dropout.

Ever consider your life as a step show?

No matter who or where you are, you are stepping in line or in association with someone or something. If we had to do a parody of Yeezy’s song for some of us it would sound like…Career Step. School Step. Relationships Step. Mula Step. Whether you’re a student, a mechanic, artist, drug dealer, or pastor you are following, worshiping, praising, and stepping to someone, some idea, or something.

As Christians we’re striving to be like Christ and the easiest way to do that is to be in step with the Holy Spirit. When you’re in step with something or someone you’re following their every move. They turn left, you turn left, they put their hands up in a formation, you mimic that formation with your hands. The Bible has given us the opportunity to study Christ’s moves and through our everyday living we are able to put those moves into practice. We’re given daily opportunities to step in love, just as Christ loved, opportunities to step in evangelism, just as Christ evangelized to the lost.

But sometimes we miss-step. We allow idols, distractions, and attractions to sin to throw off our intentions of remaining in step with the Holy Spirit.

“You were running a good race. Who cut in on you and kept you from obeying the truth?” Gal. 5:7

The flesh and Spirit desire different things, their step routines look completely different. Following the steps of the world can have you strolling down the wrong path (corny pun intended). In stepping with the world your moves no longer honor or glorify the God that has created you. And the difference will be evident by the fruits that will be produced in your life. Because after all when you’re in step with the Spirit then you bear the fruit of the Spirit-love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, faithfulness, self-control, and meekness! All of which are the kind of fruit the Lord loves to see on our trees!

“Since we live by the Spirit, let us keep in step with the Spirit.” Galatians 5:25

All I can do is urge you to make a prayer commitment, a Bible reading commitment, do whatever it takes to keep yourself in step with the Holy Spirit because these days are evil (Eph. 5:16). Don’t you wish you could have more peace, more patience, be more kind, with more self-control, make moves in the Spirit so that you can get there! If that’s what you want and who you want to be then don’t let anything stop you from getting on Christ’s line and Stompin’ the Yard!-ok I got a little carried away on that one, but seriously- Wake up daily deciding you’re gonna step with Christ!

Media Junkie

See full size image

Have you ever thought about your level of media intake?? Pandora, ipods, and cell phones keep us musically connected 24/7, Youtube has changed video sharing forever, and inventions like redbox make renting movies more affordable than ever. Yet just because the media is available doesn’t quite mean we as Christians should be consuming it.

After having a few talks on the power of media, I heard/had some painful confessions…“I wasn’t struggling with having sex until I started watching movies with intense sex scenes. Curse words weren’t in my mouth until I started listening to explicit music. I wasn’t obsessed with my poverty, success, and my singleness before I started listening and watching the wrong types of media”

As much as we like to justify ourselves, we have to admit media is powerful and can often encourage behavior that is completely unglorifying to God. After going through a period of subjecting myself to the wrong type of media I found myself feeling spiritually clogged. I felt my mind focusing on all the worldly things I tried to escape, falling in to all the mentalities my life in Christ had reversed. The wrong type of media can have you feeling disconnected, struggling to rekindle your relationship with the Father. And even though you know He has promised to never leave you, you find yourself asking Him, “Where are You?”

Truth is you know exactly where He is, He’s inside of you. When you give your life to Christ, the Holy Spirit comes to live inside of you, your body is a temple (Eph. 1:13). The Holy Spirit gives comfort, guidance, and full conviction (1 Thessalonians 1:5). For every time you wince at the F word, don’t find yourself laughing at the crude humor, or feel uncomfortable watching a racy movie scene, it’s the Holy Spirit inside of you letting you know that you’re inviting some pretty unwanted houseguests into your temple, the type of houseguests who’s partying can have you tuning the Holy Spirit out.

When I need the Lord’s guidance, when He’s calling me to action or to go in a certain direction, I don’t want to feel disconnected. And with our daily dependence on Him there’s no room to feel spiritually clogged. There’s no beat tight enough that it should come between you and God.

I don’t have any direct guidelines to media such as a Christian approved move lists.  But I can tell you that we have and need to follow the Holy Spirit’s convictions and we have Paul’s call for us to think and meditate on things that are pure, honest, lovely, and commendable (Phil. 4:8). If media can influence what we think, meditate, and daydream about then we need to make our media pure, honest, lovely, and commendable.

Relationships suffer when conflicts exist. When it comes to your relationship with God maybe media is a conflict you need to resolve.