Over the last couple of years since the first version of this blog, the writing and the overall goal and direction have continually shifted. What started as a site writing about finding freedom in life and work and looking for overall purpose and direction began to really shift. I have learned a lot these past couple of years about life and about my God and the restoration that is offered to us through Jesus. If you look at Isaiah 61, this is the Scripture that Jesus uses to proclaim his purpose. To comfort and heal the brokenhearted and to set the captives free. This offer and purpose to restore each and everyone of us. We were all captives and all have been the brokenhearted in some way. From this I began to really shift focus in my writing.
What started as 4 Pillars has now evolved into 4 Streams. The streams that Jesus walked in to offer our restoration. Discipleship, Counseling, Healing, and Warfare. I adapted to this teaching after reading the book Waking the Dead by John Eldredge. I believe this teaching is a central part of restoring our hearts and in drawing closer to God in our lives. It enables us to come alive. Since coming into the 4 Streams, I have learned a great deal. The issue now is putting that all into practice in my life. I believe this is critical teaching and as I walk in the 4 Streams, I want to share that with you to help you apply it further in your own lives. So what I am going to share now is deeper dive into each of the streams. This first post will be on Discipleship, or more specifically, Walking with God. I want to provide teaching that I’ve learned from John and others, confirmed in Scripture, and from my own experiences walking with God and building that intimate relationship.
So, what do you think of when you think of discipleship? Many things that come to mind are around our christian growth. Learning to be more responsible, connecting with people in fellowship, connecting with our church families, and much more. There’s one key aspect that is often overlooked in discipleship and that is walking with God. Conversing with him and seeking him in our lives for counsel. Making him an intimate part of your life. Not just knowing about him, but allowing him into your heart on a deeper level and really hearing him and getting to know more about him. This goes beyond just reading Scripture too, as I’ve come to find out, and includes our prayer time and learning to hear him in our hearts and discerning what is really God, the enemy, or our own selves.
John points to Mark chapter 1 and when Jesus encounters the first disciples. His invitation to this rag tag bunch is to hang and to walk with him. “Come, follow me, and I will show you how to fish for people” (vs 17 ). Follow me, walk with me. That’s quite an invitation. ‘I will show you how to fish for people.’ That tells me that if we follow Jesus, he will lead. Walk with God and he will lead us in our lives and on a deep and intimate level.
Again, what does Jesus offer. He offers restoration and life. Our hearts our made new through Jesus. The path to life can be a rocky path, however. We encounter so much warfare and attempts by the enemy to take us out. Happens all the time. Has happened to me. Walking with God in discipleship can be key in traversing this path. “You will make known to me the path of life” (Psalm 16:11). If we walk with God he will reveal the path he wants to lead us on. “For the gate is small and the way is narrow that leads to life, and there are few who find it” (Matthew 7:14). So we have a path to life and restoration in Jesus. It is narrow path, but God offers to show us the way. He knows each and everyone and desires for us to lean and trust in him to lead us. “Trust in the Lord with all your heart and do not lean on your own understanding” (Proverbs 3:5).
So in walking with God a key aspect is being able to hear him. Being able to decipher his voice when he speaks to you in your heart. Not around you, but down deep. You need to be able to decipher his voice from the clutter of the world and the enemy and your thoughts. Learn to figure out what’s really from God. This is something that definitely takes practice and I am working at it everyday. Still don’t have it down and God still continues to amaze me in they way he speaks and leads me. We need to be able to turn to him for counsel and ask him into everything in life. John Eldredge used many examples in his audio session talking about seeking God with even the smallest things and the big things. It’s important and we need to be more reliant on him and not ourselves.
In seeking his counsel though, we have to be able to accept it even when he tells us, NO. If we don’t listen we he says no, then we are still trying to be self-reliant. We are still trying to trust ourselves, “lean on our own understanding.” You can’t be self-reliant and walk intimately with God.
God will definitely start to stir us in the way he encounters us in trying to restore our hearts. What does God do to begin restoring us? He reawakens desire. He disrupts and stirs our lives and hearts and he intrigues, all to stir us to walk with him. God has worked this heavily in my own life. This started over two years ago when I began to write on the first version of this site. Something stirred in my heart. Didn’t know what it was at the time. I just knew I was being called to something more than what I had been in. I began to write, but still spent much of my time very self reliant and not opening my heart to hear God in any of it.
What happens this year? As you all know, God sent me to Colorado to the Wild at Heart Bootcamp. He intrigued me in what would be there and disrupted my world completely unplugging me from my regular life and allowing me to completely plug into him. Allowed him to dive deep into my heart and to hear God speak to me like I have never heard before. He began to Father me and he was inviting me to walk with him. Since then, he has lead me on a whole knew adventure these last few months. I believe God is leading me to take the stories and experiences of my brokenness and restoration to counsel and help others through my own testimony and through this teaching. It all begins with being able and willing to let go and walk with God. Hearing God and talking with Jesus is a fundamental right of every christian. Something that no other religion or cult in this world can ever offer you. They just can’t.
I hope this was helpful. I will also be dive deeper into the other streams next. To help give you all a deeper understanding of where I am going with my writing and teaching. I have links on the front page of this site and my About me page to will lead to some resources at Ransomed Heart that dive deeper. I will be diving in and learning more myself as we go along. I hope you join me on this journey.
“The dullness that overshadows a passive person is increased by the mounting number of times one doesn’t respond to the promptings of God.” –Greg Manalli