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!)



Have not updated this blog for a long time – I’ve been swamped with REAL LIFE…. and I have kept up with the blogosphere by reading, but have not let you into my life for a while now.

For those of you who are still reading – thanks for sticking with these unplanned hiatuses… I don’t like them any more than you do!  For those who have stumbled onto The Hand of God, welcome!

Now,  onto my post!

I have been trying to spend some more time with the Lord recently in the midst of changes of schedule.  My older son (now 4) has started primary school – can anyone say ‘disruption’?  Between trying to figure out new routes and times, and figuring out whether I could go into work later or not after dropping the younger son (now 2) to nursery… it was a trip just getting out the door on mornings!

I’ve also had more responsibility at work, necessitating ingenious ways of getting on top of my workload – including waking up at 4 in the morning to connect to the office computers so that I can check on the health of the company databases (I’m an IT professional in my other life.)

So –  it was two days ago, and it was about 3:3o AM.  I had just finished doing my early morning database checks, and I felt a nudge from the Holy Spirit.  I wanted to go and pray!  I told my friend Jennifer that I’d talk to her later and signed off chat.  (She’s in South Africa, which is like 9 hours ahead of my time zone in the Caribbean, so it was 3 AM on my side, but she’d probably just gotten to work at 9 AM her time.)

I sat on my couch and I just waited before the Lord.  I prayed a bit, but then eventually went silent –  and I just heard him say, “Zakar.”  Now, as I commented in an earlier post, one meaning for this word is “remember.”  Immediately after I heard that word, my mind was awash with memories of times when I was before large groups of my peers during university days and praying and prophesying over them.  Different times and instances passed through my mind – a couple of times I was standing at the front with long lines of people filing up for me to lay hands on them; times I was prophesying at large student gatherings – all with that central theme of God using me.

For those who don’t know, I’m currently on sabbatical from ministry – seeking God and wanting more of him as I work through some personal issues.  To have images from my past come unbidden to mind – especially these images – spoke volumes to me.  It told me that God has not finished with me yet.  It encouraged me that, as the Word says, “…God’s gifts and call are irrevocable.” (Romans 11:29b)  It made me long for the time where I’m released to minister again… and it made me seek God more for divine encounters with his Holy Spirit!

I then went to Bible Gateway (www.biblegateway.com) and saw that the Verse for the Day was Psalm 143:10, which says, “Teach me to do your will, for you are my God: may your good Spirit lead me on level ground.”  Sounds much like a prayer of my heart, so I decided to read the whole psalm.  I was struck to silence by Ps. 143:5, which says:

I remember the days of long ago;
I meditate on all your works
and consider what your hands have done.

That’s exactly what God was doing before I saw the Scripture… having me remember days of long ago, and making me remember and meditate on the stuff he was doing!  It was an awesome time for me.  God, you are WORTHY OF ALL PRAISE!  I’m so pumped to see where God is leading me…

Now, to stir life back into this connection with the interwebs….. here’s a question!

Has God done something in your life that is worthy of remembering?  Let this be a memorial space…. let us know what you remember! Join us in “meditat[ing] in all [His] works, and consider[ing] what [His] hands have done.”

Zakar – A Word Study … and Reflections on Manhood

Zakar’ – a primitive root; properly, to mark (so as to be recognized), i.e. to remember; by implication, to mention; also (as denominative from ‘zakar’ (2145)) to be male:–X burn (incense), X earnestly, be male, (make) mention (of), be mindful, recount, record(-er), remember, make to be remembered, bring (call, come, keep, put) to (in) remembrance, X still, think on, X well.

Interesting thought on manhood I heard while going to a men’s service at Restoration Ministries last night. The sermon was on the ‘male man’ and the pastor spoke of Zakar being the Hebrew word for masculinity. He said that it had two meanings – the sharp male organ (sharp? Never thought about it as sharp….hehe, no pun intended) or to remember –  call to rememberance.

(Incidentally, the Hebrew for man speaks of his penis – and the Hebrew for woman means to pierce or bore through… look at this quote I found while trying to research what I was told at the assembly: Male” is the Hebrew zakar from the Arabic for penis, meaning to be sharp, and “female” is the Hebrew neqebah, which means perforata, from the Hebrew naqab, to bore through. ‘ 1 Interesting, huh?)

Calling to rememberance is linked to worship, as quoted in the Voice of the Sheep  blog (originally in an essay written by Timothy J. Ralston , Th.M., Ph.D., The Spirit’s Role in Corporate Worship)

To remember” invoked the existence of a binding covenant, calling all to recognize and fulfill their responsibilities, joining with all who ever participated in the same covenant as a single community under God’s rule.

Ralston comments that “Every festival, sacrifice, and memorial designed to promote the worship of God was instituted as a “memorial.”  He goes on to speak on Passover as Israel’s act of rememberance in the Old Testament, which affirmed God’s covenant with the people; the New Testament’s equivalent is the Lord’s Supper, commonly called communion.
The linking of the male to worship is interesting.  The pastor made the point that men are inherently made to worship.  Makes you wonder – traditonal ‘worship teams’ are at least 80-90% female…. men are not supposed to shy away from worship, as it is built into our DNA.  Food for thought…

1. http://www.biblenews1.com/history6/20060101.htm