Let God Take You There

Never apologize for how God has hardwired you. People have a need to live, design, plan, and build. To hold hope, receive love, and to see how our life matters – you're designed to thrive and God can take you there. 

This is why Jesus offered "abundant" life, not mere survival. He offered more than a little joy, but that our "joy would be full". Jesus offers a life that fulfills our deepest needs. He designed us to live an extraordinary life and the scriptures are loaded with evidence, we just need eyes to see. Let God take you there. 

I've been challenged recently by Watchman Nee. He was a church leader and evangelist in China who was used powerfully by God. The underground church credits it's beginnings to a handful of faithful pastors, Nee is one of the most prominent. 

Nee spoke of the deep things of God. He saw that many read the scriptures in a detached manner. What he proposed is profound. The need we have is to read the words of God as they are – a living message from God designed to pierce our heart with a vision (message) from God and a clear path to take hold of it.

Reading the scriptures needs to become worship. I'm learning how intimate and powerful the message can be when we ask God to speak to us directly and to shepherd us into the deepest truths of his love and plan for our lives. 

Make an appointment to meet with God in his word. Prepare for it like you would to meet with a King – he is! Listen to every word and allow him to speak into your spirit by his Spirit. The Holy Spirit will "guide you into all truth" so allow him entry into every corner of your life. 

God designed you to thrive. His word, led by his spirit, is a guided tour into a world yet undiscovered by too many Christians. Take the road less traveled today. Let God take you there and the word of God will be "at work in you".

John 10:10, Hebrews 4:12, John 16:13, I Thessalonians 2:13

It went so well last week...we're doing it again! Come get a cup of coffee and a shot of vision for a new church launching in downtown Chicago. Join us..This Saturday, December 10th. Click here for more info!

 

 

Receive God's Great Vision

There's no vision for our life that is greater than God's vision. So never settle for aimlessness or even busyness for that matter. Our life can count for something dynamic. Our gifting can be tapped into in ways like we've never imagined. Our legacy can be as rich as our God is great. Our soul can be saturated by a peace that transcends understanding. Yes, our desire to breath, taste, and experience abundant life is even more than the American dream. So we better not settle for anything less than God's best. 

But God's best is often missed by substituting one big problem for another even larger one. Many of us struggle with seasons of aimlessness. Wondering where to focus our life and what to drill down on in life is a common point of discussion. Myriad books are written on finding our sweet spot and staying in it. But without God speaking into the equation we trade aimlessness for busyness – that's trading down. When lacking clear direction we must resist getting busy. Our greatest need when a sense of aimlessness strikes our soul is to seek the God and listen for his voice. 

God's plan for aimlessness is not to get busy. Look at how change really happens.

"Where there is no prophetic vision the people cast off restraint, but blessed is he who keeps the law." 

There is an undeniable link between the Word and Vision. If we carve out consistent time and in this time pour over the word of God, we WILL receive a joy-filled vision for our lives. There is one other element to put in the mix. Always have a trusted mentor to check your work. Find that person who loves us enough to not be a "yes person" but who will always point us us back to the truth of who God is and who we are in him. 

So trade in aimlessness for the revealed plan God has for your life. Don't get busy. Take the necessary time to dig into the word of God and watch what will happen. The greatest personal discoveries come through self-discovery. 

Proverbs 29:18

Special Note: I'm inviting people who have a passion for God's great vision, the gospel and spiritual adventure, to prayerfully consider joining me in launching a church in Chicago. Click here for more information.

Today We Pray

When we realize our need for wisdom...our potential for learning is off the charts. When we recognize our lack of strength...our potential for increased power is without measure.

Have you ever felt like your passion to do something had to be matched by your personal expertise and unmatched energy? We all have, but God's economy is different. When God places a passion within us, and it's confirmed by scripture/counsel...it's time to pray, not act!

Today we pray. God has placed within us a passion to join God in reaching people with good news – to launch a church in downtown Chicago. This passion requires prayer. The city is huge, the need is great, the time is now – but where, when, and how?

Today we pray. Junanne and I are going downtown with one other friend to pray and listen to God. Yes, he speaks! When we need wisdom and lack strength, we're strategically positioned for something great to happen.

"For the foolishness of God is wiser than human wisdom, and the weakness of God is stronger than human strength." I Corinthians 1:25

(If you'd like to join us in this new vision, and pray with us...email me at Karl@KarlClauson.com)

"Just A Little Bigger Than Me, God!" (Remix)

God teaches us deep things about life, even when we’re running from him. That’s what God did with me when he showed me how much I needed his help in a whiteout on the coast of Alaska.

I was young, unafraid, and drove my dog team straight into the teeth of a fierce storm. In extremely cold conditions and my team unable to move, in fear, I called out to God. He heard me and I'm only alive to tell about it today because of his grace.

Years later God saved me from myself. That spiritual transformation led to a clear understanding of how God works in our life. He takes me back, in my mind, to that frozen moment in time. God wants me to never forget the secret to Christian living–we constantly need things in our life that are “just a little bigger than me”.

There is a ton we get done in our own power, strength, and ingenuity. But that’s not where the jazz and joy of faith is found. The secret has to get out. Here it is: We have to chase and be involved in things that are “just a little bigger than me” or we’ll shrink in our apathy or choke to spiritual death on our pride.

Take Joshua for instance, he didn’t look across the Jordan and say, “I got this”. No way! God told Joshua to be “strong and courageous” because he new for certain he needed a pep talk. Joshua essentially said to God, “I don’t think I can do this”. And that’s the point! Here’s the bottom line. God wants us dependent on him. And if we’re not, that thing we’re doing might not be from him.

So muster the courage to say it…”just a little bigger than me, God”!

“Just A Little Bigger Than Me”

God teaches us deep things about life, even when we’re running from him. That’s what God did with me when he showed me how much I needed his help in a whiteout on the coast of Alaska.

I was young, unafraid, and drove my dog team straight into the teeth of a fierce storm. In extremely cold conditions and my team unable to move, in fear, I called out to God. He heard me and I'm only alive to tell about it today because of his grace.

Years later God saved me from myself. That spiritual transformation led to a clear understanding of how God works in our life. He takes me back, in my mind, to that frozen moment in time. God wants me to never forget the secret to Christian living–we constantly need things in our life that are “just a little bigger than me”.

There is a ton we get done in our own power, strength, and ingenuity. But that’s not where the jazz and joy of faith is found. The secret has to get out. Here it is: We have to chase and be involved in things that are “just a little bigger than me” or we’ll shrink in our apathy or choke to spiritual death on our pride.

Take Joshua for instance, he didn’t look across the Jordan and say, “I got this”. No way! God told Joshua to be “strong and courageous” because he new for certain he needed a pep talk. Joshua essentially said to God, “I don’t think I can do this”. And that’s the point! Here’s the bottom line. God wants us dependent on him. And if we’re not, that thing we’re doing might not be from him.

So muster the courage to say it…”just a little bigger than me, God”! 

Truth Kills Lies (share with a vet)

It's time to think like a winner! I'm not suggesting mind games, I'm championing God's truth that's marinating in our minds. Thinking on transcendent things isn't playing games, for God's kids it's our calling to think like a winner..."For you have died, and your life is hidden with Christ in God". What a God, he's constantly coaching, directing, correcting and inspiring us to get our lives aligned with the spiritual reality that we are brand new in Christ and we GET to live like it. We can't afford to get sucked into a losing mindset because what rolls around in our brain in the morning will likely be rolled out in our life by evening. The cause and effect of our thoughts and it's direct impact on our life is undeniable. There is no time to waste on this one. It's time to think like a winner. Not to prop up our self-esteem, but to honor God and get in the streams of His life and our joy! 

You gotta get your head around this staggering vision from God: The direct impact of rehearsing God's truth over and over in your mind produces awesome results in your life..."like a tree planted by streams of water that yields its fruit in its season, and its leaf does not wither. In all that he does, he prospers". This isn't a pipe dream or reserved for "super saints", this is God's unblushing promise for you! Please make a note: The flip side is ugly. Hang out with gossipers, mockers, small-thinkers, crass-jokers, downers or holier-than-thou'ers and life ain't gonna be pretty, because over time they get in your head. It's true...you'll start drinkin' and thinkin' from the same bath water..."futile thinking...darkens hearts". But note this little nuance: The absence of right thinking isn't necessarily neutral thinking. It can be setting us up for negative and destructive thinking. The Committee (Satan and demons) loves to fill empty spaces. So let's get our thinking aligned with God's winning truth.

Col. 3, Ps. 1:1-3, Rom. 1:21

You See That?

God is always up to something in and around our lives. And whether big or small - it's always dynamic. The only real question is why do some people see it and live with hand rubbing expectation while others are oblivious?

It should be said that spiritual pride is the most blinding to the works and ways of God. We can all grow in awareness of God's moves - No person can see it all. But there is a common thread with spiritual visionaries who see below and/or beyond the surface of any situation - and this is not for an exclusive group.

First, if we humble ourselves under the Father's hand, he will lift us up (I Peter 5:6). Implied in the context is a new vantage point to see the battlefield and immanent attacks more clearly.

Second, Jesus came to give sight to the blind - that's you and me (John 9:39). This verse indicates that self-will is blinding, but the closer we cling to Jesus, the more the fog will lift before us.

Third, the primary function of the Holy Spirit is to guide us into ALL truth (John 16:13). There is an aspect of the HS that is beyond the natural senses. This is why giving our mind to the truth of God's word helps us listen to the HS and navigate around our own flesh, foolish people, and constant temptation.

God is at work...I pray we see it today!

Enough Is Enough

Forty years was enough. Joshua had received more than just a vision of the promised land, he had walked, touched, and tasted the promise of God. There was just one problem, he was blocked from taking hold of God’s gift because he was outnumbered by skeptics who had chosen instead to lock eyes on the giants in the land. 

But this was a new day. A fresh opportunity had been afforded him because he had never lost sight of the vision. It was etched in his mind and for forty years he must have risen each morning wondering what could have been. 

What about you? What has God given you a glimpse of? That vision to start something that is both beyond you but absolutely for you. To head into unchartered territory that will take everything God has placed within you and even more. That pull of God’s Spirit that’s filling the sail of your soul with hope, confidence and resolution to never settle for less than God's best. 

There comes a time when we all need to say, “that’s it!, I’m going in, going forward, and nothing but God himself will stop me, and only God’s power alone can carry me”. That’s exactly what this day is for you. And when you hear the call of God to “get up”, you need to move because too much is at stake to stay another day.  

Joshua 1

Vision...It's In The Word

There's no vision for our life that is greater than God's vision. So never settle for aimlessness or even busyness for that matter. Our life can count for something dynamic. Our gifting can be tapped into in ways like we've never imagined. Our legacy can be as rich as our God is great. Our soul can be saturated by a peace that transcends understanding. And all of this can be our new reality, even as we walk through tough personal trials. Yes, our desire to breath, taste, and experience abundant life is even more than the American dream. So we better not settle for anything less than God's best. 

But God's best is often missed by substituting one big problem for another even larger one. Many of us struggle with seasons of aimlessness. Wondering where to focus our life and what to drill down on in life is a common point of discussion. Myriad books are written on finding our sweet spot and staying in it. But without God speaking into the equation we trade aimlessness for busyness. And that's trading down. When lacking clear direction we must resist getting busy. Our greatest need when a sense of aimlessness strikes our soul is to seek the God who gave us our unique design. 

God's plan for aimlessness is not to get a degree in vision. Look at how change really happens.

"Where there is no prophetic vision the people cast off restraint, but blessed is he who keeps the law." 

There is an undeniable link between the Word and Vision. If we carve out consistent time and in this time pour over the word of God, we WILL receive a joy-filled vision for our lives. There is one other element to put in the mix. Always have a trusted mentor to check your work. Find that person who loves us enough to not be a "yes person" but who will always point us us back to the truth of who God is and who we are in him. 

So trade in aimlessness for the revealed plan God has for your life. Don't get busy. Take the necessary time to dig into the word of God and watch what will happen. The greatest personal discoveries come through self-discovery. 

Proverbs 29:18

Keep your eyes open!

One of my most amazing days of fishing in Alaska was almost missed. I was skimming the surface of the Little Susitna river near Anchorage. About 45 minutes into our downriver trip, as I was taking in the beauty of the day, I saw a quick flash of silver on the surface of the river. Nothing about the area made me want to stop. The river was wide and flat there. There was no evidence that this would be a good place to fish. No cut banks, back eddies–nothing that made this place look desirable. But that little flash intrigued me, so I slowed the river boat, steered back upstream and asked my friend to throw the anchor.

He was perplexed but I told him I saw something roll on the surface. The rest is, as they say, history! We fished that afternoon like I've never fished any day before or since. Thousands of silver salmon were piled into that stretch of river. It was several hours of casting, catching, releasing and doing it again until we were too fried to continue. At one point I was trying to release a friends fish with my own pole tucked under my arm and over my shoulder with a 10 lb. silver salmon dancing at the end of the line. We were hooting, hollering, and laughing our stomachs sore. 

Here's the simple principle: Keep your eyes open. In the least likely places and at the least likely time, God will show you a flash of something that lies just below the surface. Make no assumptions about where a good person is found, where God may provide a job, how God intends to provide for you, or how God plans to show you the love of your life. I've found that God loves to give us a glimpse of what could be and he wants to be always on the alert, not just for enemy attack, but also for blessing. 

Discover Focus

There's no vision for our life that is greater than God's vision. So never settle for aimlessness or even busyness for that matter. Our life can count for something dynamic. Our gifting can be tapped into in ways like we've never imagined. Our legacy can be as rich as our God is great. Our soul can be saturated by a peace that transcends understanding. And all of this can be our new reality, even as we walk through tough personal trials. Yes, our desire to breath, taste, and experience abundant life is even more than the American dream. So we better not settle for anything less than God's best. 

But God's best is often missed by substituting one big problem for another even larger one. Many of us struggle with seasons of aimlessness. Wondering where to focus our life and what to drill down on in life is a common point of discussion. Myriad books are written on finding our sweet spot and staying in it. But without God speaking into the equation we trade aimlessness for busyness. And that's trading down. When lacking clear direction we must resist getting busy. Our greatest need when a sense of aimlessness strikes our soul is to seek the God who gave us our unique design. 

God's plan for aimlessness is not to get a degree in vision. Look at how change really happens.

"Where there is no prophetic vision the people cast off restraint, but blessed is he who keeps the law." 

If we carve out consistent time and in this time pour over the word of God, we WILL receive a joy-filled vision for our lives. There is one other element to put in the mix. Always have a trusted mentor to check your work. Find that person who loves us enough to not be a "yes person" but who will always point us us back to the truth of who God is and who we are in him. 

So trade in aimlessness for the revealed plan God has for your life. Don't get busy. Take the necessary time to dig into the word of God and watch what will happen. The greatest personal discoveries come through self-discovery. 

Proverbs 29:18

Built To Last

When God built the first tabernacle he showed us how to build stuff, and build it right! Whatever we're constructing (or reconstructing), business, family, church, friends etc. Or whenever we're ready to let God totally renovate any area of our life, God showed us how to get it right!

Let me give away the punch line of Exodus 35: God builds the best things by touching our hearts, not manipulating our hands. This notion that God is a task master is just plain crazy. God used Moses to touch the hearts of people and give them a huge vision for what could be, if they put their hearts into it. Nothing has changed today. He's the same God who wants to touch our hearts. It's all about a "stirred" of "moved" heart.

Big News: God can build better stuff with one humble heart than with a hundred thousand capable hands! This makes abundant life attainable for everyone. When God "stirs your heart", he's about to do something beautiful and powerful. When our "heart is moved", we get unstuck from living in the past. When our "heart is moved", we pursue reconciliation and release that spirit of condemnation. When our "heart is moved", we bring our best and lay it all on the line without a need for something in return. When our "heart is moved", we get to watch God take what we have to offer and weave it into something beyond our imagination.

Life is a heart thing. When our heart is right everything seems to come together a whole lot better! 

Exodus 35

Don't Let Your Dream Die

No matter what we may think at any given moment, God's truth trumps our thoughts. It's never too late, we're never too old. We're never too worn out, or too worn down. We're never too lost, or too far gone. We're never too battered, never too shattered, for God to pull it all together. God can do more through our frailty than we can ever pull-off through our efforts of sheer humanity.  If we can take a breath we have a life that needs to be fully lived. Don't let the dream die!

God can do more in the eleventh hour than we can do in the ten prior. There's a debilitating lie that roams around board rooms, whispered in small groups, and wages a private war against our minds. This lie pushes God-given potential and endless possibility further into a dark hole of discouragement and defeat. And here is the subtle killer..."Past performance is the best predictor of future success", or "your current situation will never change". This is a grand lie! It denies that we were all made "in the image of God". It overlooks endless the biblical stories of redemption, often built on multiple layers of perceived failures. It ignores the passion of God to change a life and His power to do it. It reduces the "good news" to a myth and leaves Jesus dead in a grave. We can't let the dream die, because God is alive!

God loves to give vision to His kids. He loves to show himself faithful when we feel frail. Any notion that God paints a general picture of a richer future and then abandons us to stumble along is flatly untrue. This is certain: Nothing gives God more joy than moving you from where you stand today, taking courageous and bold steps tomorrow, and ultimately realizing the vision and dreams that God gave you!

Genesis 15:1-6

The Fear of Risking Everything for Something Empty (Part 3)

Let God Speak

Sometimes we fear chasing something empty, because it’s happened too often in the past. But chasing empty things is usually because we've followed loud voices but we have yet to hear God's voice. Rushing off to chase what is popular, accepted, politically correct, or even expected of us, are several reasons we have come up empty. And the risk has not been met with any real reward - the risk came back hollow. People-pleasing is a primary failing in our pursuit of abundant living. When we measure our approval through the eyes of man, there is no room for the vision from God. The real tragedy is that when we worry more about what man says, we leave no room for the voice of God. 

We must let God speak. When we receive revelation from God, opportunity will no longer slip through our hands. When God speaks it sounds right because it is. It's not easy, nor is it cookie cutter. God's voice usually flies in the face of pop culture, conventional wisdom and even mainstream Christianity. But we must take the time and give God the floor of our heart - let God speak. Many have never heard from God but it’s not because he is silent, it’s because we just won’t stop talking, moving, self-medicating and the biggest problem, people-pleasing. But God has something to say - we need to let God speak.

Revelation is not reserved for the elite - God is speaking to everyone. God’s message to us is best received in a posture of humility and it is never withheld from the poor in spirit. Tell God you're on a search for his best and he’ll guide you on a great discovery. When you were tucked away in mom's womb God had unique plans for you. And although in the past you’ve risked everything for empty dreams, nothing you've done to this very point in time is unusable - NOTHING. Even the years that we've wandered in what seems like a desert, are just increasing our thirst for rivers of life, and toughening our soles for a great journey. Don't let fear of the future keep you from hearing God - Let God speak.

Proverbs 29:18