High Expectations

There is a high level of expectation and excitement at the beginning of the school year. Students are pumped and you hear things like: “I’m following Jesus, baby! Nothing will slow me down!”

You can feel the energy in the air and it’s quite electric. Girls and guys look their best, act their best, and say their best.

Imagine a diamond ring in a display case. Everything about it sparkles and glimmers. 

I think this is awesome! Students should be excited. In fact, they should come to school expecting great things to happen.

Miraculous events take place all throughout the school year at Rhema and I truly believe it’s because there’s a multiplied level of expectancy.

It would be harder for me to believe that 300+ faith-filled, Spirit-filled Christians are hanging out in one place and God didn’t show up on a daily basis.

However, I am always a bit skeptical for the same reasons I get excited…

Being overly emotional leads many Christians astray. The need to be “spiritual” is dangerous.

rbtc-sealI often wonder how we can be any more spiritual than “I am a spirit, I have a soul, and I live in a body.”

So what’s with the need to be more “spiritual”?

I believe it boils down to a misplaced sense of what it means to be significant, yet trying to gain significance by impressing others leads many Christian leaders down a road of empty accolades.

True significance is only found in Christ. No man or woman can meet that need.

As the school year progresses (or you’re preparing to come to Rhema next year), here’s my encouragement to you: 

 Always be excited.

Always be real.

Say what you mean and mean what you say.

Walk in the reality that you’re approved by God and called into ministry by God.

And know that you’re a vital part of the Rhema family, a part of Brother Hagin’s God-given commission to “Go teach my people faith.” 


An amazing and sustaining grace

Many of the bloggers I enjoy following are so bold. They take fierce stands on hard topics and ride the criticism like surfers ride waves.

I’ve deleted everything 5 times today.200 words here, 150 words there. The thought of hitting publish made me queasy.

Playing it safe is a hard trap to escape.

How many times have we talked about being bold? Being unafraid? Not hiding?

Your fearless leader was a coward today.

She cried over what to make for dinner. Seriously. This happened. When told to put something together for dinner I freaked out. The need for approval and the fear of rejection collided in the perfect storm.

Over dinner.

Today is not the first time I’ve struggled with words and dinner either. Today is simply the first time I’ve had the courage to talk about it.

Dear Friends,

I have a hard time making choices without a plan and saying things without fearing the opinions of others.


Tired-of-being-scared Audra

Yesterday I talked about Bold Christians vs. Sissy Christians. (Insert face palm.)

Sorry about that…

I strongly agree with what I said, but you need to read today’s post for a much needed addendum.

It’s hard to be a Bold Christian when you cry over dinner planning. (This is what’s been haunting me all day.)

But remember what I said about grace for the lost?

Grace is for Christians too. There are no double standards with Jesus.

Look at Romans 5:

10 For if when we were enemies we were reconciled to God through the death of His Son, much more, having been reconciled, we shall be saved by His life. 11 And not only that, but we also rejoice in God through our Lord Jesus Christ, through whom we have now received the reconciliation.

If grace and love is available while we were sinners, grace and love will sustain us even more when we become Christians.

Learning how to extend grace to yourself can be hard. We see our fallacies and failures so clearly. Remember, though, that grace gives us new vision–for others and for ourselves.

God’s love is for you

The monster I had to fight with every night was rejection.

I was the poster child for good kids everywhere, but something was still missing. The praise of my family and friends never satisfied me–though I wanted their praise to keep coming.

The two people I wanted acceptance from had ditched me a long time ago. That’s who I was trying please.

See, Mom and Dad, I’m worth something. I’m not a mistake. You were wrong about me.

Rejection would growl:

Stay on the ground, Audra. You can’t win this one. No one will ever accept you.

I believed him too.

For a long time, I even let this monster keep me from experiencing God’s love.

God's loveOh, I knew about God’s love, but it couldn’t be for me. This was my logic: If your parents–who are supposed to model the love of God–reject you, that must mean that God can’t love you.

It wasn’t until my 20s that I truly surrendered all of my heart to God. He came to me in the most tender way, whispering in my ear that His acceptance and love didn’t have anything to do with where I started from.

Today, during a time of prayer, I was overwhelmed with gratitude while remembering where God found me–in a man-made pit of despair–and how He lovingly pulled me out of it.

And God wants to do the same for you, friend.

Don’t listen to the monsters from your past. They are lying to you! I promise.

The love of God is not far from you. It’s as close as your next breath.

What’s holding you back from truly receiving it?

Shoot me an email if you want to talk about this some more.