Hear the Lion’s Roar!

This post should really have come before the last Personal Devotions post, but busyness made it sleep in my drafts folder for weeks.  If I don’t work on it now, it’ll stay here another two weeks – and it’s important as both it and the last post link into who I am now.  So, read on!

I had an experience (about two weeks ago now) that is hard for me to put into words – I can’t articulate it properly, and that’s saying a lot.  It was a deep experience where I was crying out to the Lord for change, but was so broken that I could only use sounds – sighs, sarcastic sounding short laughs (think, “Heh!”), trickling tears…. can anyone say “The Spirit intercedes for us with groans that cannot be uttered?”

Long and short of it, I was challenged that boredom and busyness have been eating away at my marriage and that I have cocooned myself into a life that is unexciting and humdrum.  I felt like I had a storm of emotions inside that boiled down to me never really allowing myself to enjoy my youth and all my life I’ve existed behind my ‘avatar’.

Yes, it came after watching the movie Avatar, but being a computer geek, the name sparked a deep revelation for me.  For the uninitiated, an avatar is defined as an ’embodiment’ – and its usual meaning on the blogosphere is the picture or animation that represents a poster or commenter.   Some people are only known by their avatars – as you will probably never see them all in real life.

Anyway,  it hit me almost like a conviction that I lived my entire life behind the screen of a computer and never really DID anything – in fact, when I was going to my classes for my Microsoft certification in January of last year, people who had ‘normal’ lives were itching for the classes to be over, and I was all excited because I had some place to GO on a Saturday.  That was only one memory of many that flushed through my mind at that moment – each one giving another reaction.  All I could do is stand there in the midst of all these emotions, but inside I was crying out, “God! Help me!”

Sometime during the night I had an experience with the Spirit of God who told me that I was a lion inside and that the lion nature needed to come out!  He told me (as my body shook by being in his presence) that I was raising a pride of lions in my family: my wife already sees herself as a lioness, and has told me as such;  my boys have told me they are lion cubs (all innocently – and before this incident with the Lord.)  It is so much so that they like practicing their roars around the house!  (Truth be told, my younger son has since told me that he is not a lion – he’s a tiger lolol)

I woke up with the the insatiable need to ROAR!  When I shared it with my wife (shyly, as I was embarrassed – another weird emotion for me) she encouraged me and we roared together!

Since then lions have been on my mind.  This last weekend, God arrested me while showing my boys an old videotape of The Lion King – where Simba loses his father through false accusation and has to face his past and return to Pride Rock to save his family from destruction.

There were so many parallels to where I am right now…  but what made me feel the wind of the Spirit around  me was at the end  when Simba had defeated his evil uncle Scar (who was a usurper to the throne) and started to climb Pride Rock to face his family as the rightful king.  Halfway up the rock he looks up and hears his father’s voice intoning “Remember who you are…. Remember… Remember…”  (This scene always reminds me of these two posts concerning remembering – read them here and here.)

What really gets me is when Simba ROARS – which gets the whole pride roaring alongside him.  God used that image to call me to remind me of how he sees me.  As Simba had to overcome his past, so has he called me to do – to “remember who [I am]”  and to ROAR over my circumstances.

As I mentioned in my last post, the Lord spoke about a Band of Brothers to me before leading me to the Band of Brothers website.  In part, their ministry can be summarized in this quote from their website:

This is the goal of the Band of Brothers’ ministry – to cast a vision to our tired and warn out generation of men and to challenge them to engage in the noble purpose for which we were created.  We want to motivate and inspire men by echoing the call of Christ to be willing to give up everything for Him – no matter the cost.  For we do not want to miss out on a noble mission and legacy that will echo throughout eternity!

I have taken that rallying call – WHATEVER THE COST! – and that is my motto for this season of my life.  The cost of discipleship has already been painful – but I WILL NOT STOP NOW.

Pray for me that God will allow the lion to roar out of me – empowered by THE lion – the Lion of the Tribe of Judah – the LORD JESUS CHRIST!  Pray that WHATEVER THE COST I will continue along to full manhood – full maturity … creation groans in anticipation of the revealing of the [mature] sons of God!

19The creation waits in eager expectation for the sons of God to be revealed. (Romans 8:19)

HEAR THIS LION ROAR!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

(PS – My friend Archie wants to learn more about Barbados, so I’ll endeavour to put a little tidbit about our culture in each post or do a weekly post about Barbados.  I’ll just say here – Americans have Martin Luther King Day … Barbadians have a day honouring our first Prime Minister, Errol Walton Barrow on his birthday January 21st.  He was the Premier of Barbados who led our country into independence from Britain on November 30th, 1966. Ok, I won’t lengthen this post anymore! Tune in next time!)


Personal Devotions: Sobering Word

37“Anyone who loves his father or mother more than me is not worthy of me; anyone who loves his son or daughter more than me is not worthy of me; 38and anyone who does not take his cross and follow me is not worthy of me. 39Whoever finds his life will lose it, and whoever loses his life for my sake will find it.  (Matt 27:37-39)

Sobering words.   Anyone who loves father or mother…. son or daughter… more than God is not worthy of him. How easy is it to love other things more than God?  To what do I owe my allegiance?  Anyone who does not take cross and follow Christ is not worthy of him. What does that mean?  How do I take up my cross?  Do I want to take up my cross to follow him?

I have decided to follow Jesus.  Behind my failures and successes, behind every time I mess up, behind any time I share a wonderful powerful testimony of God’s glory – there lies a heart that is sold out for God.

But yet – being sold out for God still means little if I don’t choose to be a disciple.  NO MATTER THE COST.

On Sunday I am sure I heard in my heart – I think I was coming out of a dream – the term ‘Band of Brothers.”  I had no reference point for the term, so I just left it alone, let it simmer in its own juices, as it were.

A couple of days ago, I found myself surfing and found this website – the Band of Brothers Ministry.  One of their tenets is to covenant among the men of the Body of Christ – a band of brothers – to intentionally be more like Jesus, a disciple.   The covenant on their About page is as follows:

I will surrender my all to God – no matter the cost – so that I can become more like Jesus Christ – my brother and King.  I will seek out a band of brothers, for whose lives and legacies I will fight, so that together we can fulfill our mission to know, love and glorify God our Father.

This covenant has resonated with me.  I WILL SURRENDER MY ALL to GOD – NO MATTER THE COST.

This is my prayer.