Tag Archives: Gender

A Christian Voice In A Changing Culture
blazing love

Blazing Love

‘Everyone will be salted with fire.’ (MK 9:49)

I met Ross a couple of years ago and could tell by his puzzled yet open face that he knew little about religion, for better or worse. He did seem attentive to my offering that God—a Father—cared for him and wanted the best for him. It made sense to Ross that if God had set him on course in the first place then He probably did care how his life turned out.

Over the next couple of years, I prayed often for Ross and encouraged him when I could. I could not read his detours precisely. He did confess to drinking way too much and his ache seemed open to both genders. I did not know; in these days of gender gymnastics, I neither trust my ‘gay-dar’ nor do I believe in boxing someone into dead-ended categories. I cared for him as an estranged son of the Father.

Some days his hangovers made him look 10 years older; other days he looked expectant, especially when his lucrative job promised more money. Yet I could see a longing in him for something more. Maybe that’s why he did not avoid me when I came around.

Yesterday in prayer, the Father re-ignited His desire for Ross in my heart. I knew it was the Holy Spirit. I agreed with God that if I ran into him I would act decisively. Sure enough, when I bumped into Ross and he told me that he was soon leaving Kansas City for a job offer elsewhere, holy fire blazed in my heart and I prophesied over him with tears. I reconfirmed the Father’s good will to give him a future and a hope, to free him from robbers who wanted his blood.

Blazing love broke ground in Ross. He expressed a desire to know more about Jesus and His Father before he leaves town. At least he knows now that the Father loves him and desires more for him.

There is a lot of talk in the Church today about loving ‘gays’ but very little is said about our need for the Spirit’s power in doing so. The strongholds of sin are too thick to break through, our own unbelief too great, without blazing love–the flame of the Father’s heart enkindled in our prayers and stoked into a torch by the union of His Spirit with ours.

‘Salt us with Your fire for estranged sons and daughters everywhere, Holy God.’

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Royal Flood

We end our 40 days on the Feast of Christ the King, the final Sunday of the Church calendar. Crowned with thorns and pierced with sword and nails, our Crucified King loosed a royal flood. We can begin to understand that river only if we consider its Source, Jesus Christ, Lord of the Universe.

He is Creator—‘through Him all things were made’ and ‘in Him all things hold together’; He is Redeemer—the One through whose blood ‘the Father reconciled to Himself all things’ so that Jesus might reign supreme in all of life (Col. 1: 15-20).

Our King–Creator and Redeemer—rules, not by wielding a sword, but by being pierced by one. He surrenders all for our rebellion. Mighty in power, how much mightier is that power when poured out in blood and water—blood to break sin’s bonds and water to cleanse us from its debris? Only the King who allowed Himself to be crushed for us can dissolve the darkest stains of humanity. No sin is too great, no rebellion too devious: He poured out His Life in a royal flood in order to transform the hideous into holy ones. Only a King can offer Almighty mercy.

Scripture directs us to anchor that royal flood in His house, the temple Ezekiel describes (47) as the source of this river of Life, which ushers out of the altar and is filling this temple one foot at a time until its waters flow out to the streets. This rising tide combines the fruit of Crucifixion—blood and water—with Resurrection, the power of God’s Spirit to animate the forgiven into agents of His Kingdom.

The river of our King belongs to kids of His kingdom. As we take our places in His temple, living humble before the Crucified and radiant in His rising, so do these waters rise. Lost children become royalty, slaves become sons and daughters of the King. As we the Church are transformed, how can we not arise and welcome aliens so that they can become full citizens in His house, through the royal flood?

Today we live in an apostate culture in regards to gender and sexuality. Millions are being deformed by a host of enslaving ‘liberties’, dehumanizing identities and acts that are fanned by porn and media adulation. Yet a discontent burns in the hearts of many, born of both a fear of the Holy God and longing for the mercy that makes all things new. These are ‘the multitudes in the valley of decision’ (Joel 3:14). As the darkness in the land increases, so does the battle for their souls.

We are the people of the royal flood, endowed with Kingdom authority to release that river from the temple so as to reunite slaves with the King. He longs to be the Source of their freedom by granting them a place in His household. Idols are fickle masters; they ignite the weak only to incinerate them. In contrast the King composes His kids and restores their original dignity. How mighty is our King’s mercy for lost and broken ones!

How generous is He to grant us a share in His Kingdom. Will we bear His heart for lost children? Will we take our places in His house and be among those through whom ‘the river flows so that everything will live’ (Ez. 47:9)? We have immersed ourselves in the royal flood that has become our freedom. Now is the time to impart the waters to others. Let us raise the water levels in focused, daily efforts to create a Church awash in Almighty Mercy. May the royal flood overflow and become life for the world.

‘Whoever believes in Me, streams of living water will flow from within him.’
(JN 7:38)

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I’m Angry and I Need Your Help!

Bruce Jenner a woman?

America’s fractured take on gender and sexuality took a turn for the worse as this US Olympic Gold Decathlon winner becomes the new and pathetic face of artificial womanhood. Father of 6 and 65-years-old, he has ignited a media blitzkrieg, including a new reality series, in which we are to sympathize with his need to butcher and drug himself into another gender.

The truth: Jenner will always be a man, and his delusional efforts to change that will not result in a better emotional adjustment, as follow-up studies on ‘gender reassignment’ show. He will only hurt himself further.

Where is the Church who upholds the mandate to be reconciled to one’s gender while inviting fractured souls into a healing community who will walk with them into wholeness?

I think of Karen who came to our church as Kevin 20 years ago. A fragile, fractured soul, she too believed that changing her gender would bring peace. A family of faith loved her while calling her to become who she is.

Living Waters was the main vehicle God used to provide a safe, insightful and powerful track on which she could shed her misidentification and begin to embrace the gender of her birth. She has become who she is–a beautiful, authentic woman.

The Creator has a plan. The Redeemer invites us to discover that plan through the power of holy love. Through the Living Waters program, we at Desert Stream Ministries are committed to helping the Church invite others into that love. We don’t want a member of your family to consider any other option.

Living Waters is a 20-week healing course that churches run continuously for their fractured ones. All manner of sexual and gender brokenness applies.

I’m angry because too many young people will read or hear the story of Jenner’s conversion and may end up believing this is their solution. There are too few alternative truths being presented in the media.

And yet there is hope! Churches around the world are waking up to their need to give a sound pastoral response to fractured souls. Faithful ones in Asia, Europe, and Latin America are clamoring to release the truth in their care of souls. Please help us help them.

Your generous gift will help us build a truthful, transformational Church. Please help us release Living Waters everywhere.

I need your help like never before. I don’t want a fractured member of your community to give in to the same delusion as Bruce did.

Can I please count on you to make a gift of any amount today?

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Fire and Fortitude

‘Go forth from the quiet of contemplation and courageously bear witness to My truth.’ (Jesus to St. Catherine of Siena)

Christ’s coming at Christmas can only be received, treasured, contemplated; manifesting the Divine Child throughout the New Year requires all the courage and fortitude we possess.

Never before has His epiphany, or manifestation, been more urgent. The battle between Christ and anti-Christ in the form of gender reconstruction has broken out into the open. (I recently read an article by popular Catholic leader Richard Rohr who claimed: ‘The gender self is the false self.’ Really?) Calling all bright and shining lamps who can testify to the glories of Jesus and His Church–how His community liberated you to resume the journey to wholeness! The Spirit is summoning you to manifest the Almighty Mercy of Jesus amid the chaos at hand.

Reflecting on 2014, I can testify to the increase of darkness over God’s image in humanity, but also of the greater grace required to stand as His gleaming remnant. I refer not only to persons with same-sex attraction but all men and women burned by lust in whom Jesus has reclaimed authentic desire. Throughout a year marked by many obstacles, Jesus reminded me of Ezra’s words: ‘God has been gracious in leaving us a remnant, and giving us a firm place in His sanctuary…God has granted us new life to rebuild the house of God and to repair its ruins. He has given us a wall or protection.’ (Ezra 9: 8, 9)

New life to rebuild His house! Truly this is the season of the Church! He shines on churchmen and women who love nothing more than releasing streams of living water among the faithful through the word of their testimony and by gathering together to make a way for others to know His liberating truth.

That requires fortitude—the virtue of ‘firmness in difficulties and constancy in the pursuit of good.’ That virtue is worked in us by Jesus Himself as we say ‘yes’ to what He loves amid a thousand counterfeits. Annette and I have never been more hard-pressed on one hand; on the other, we experience the truth that ‘enduring difficulties, neither deliverance from them nor avoidance of them, constitutes the supreme moment of God’s power.’

Many difficulties, more power. Our gleaming as simple reflectors of His Mercy requires hardship. As the way narrows, we grow more desperate for Him, our limits eclipsed over and over by His superabundance. We live for Him and through Him. Our humble bush is consumed, but it is God that burns in us, He who cannot be extinguished and who through us will vindicate His glorious image upon the earth. ‘By standing firm we gain life’ (LK 21:19), and help others do the same.

‘Let’s wait and see is a dangerous saying. Who knows if we shall be around tomorrow? Surely the Savior will be there, but what about us? Life is not a light that can be enkindled again. Life is a fire given by God to burn on earth just once and never more! Dear friends, let us pay heed lest we miss the hour of this fire right here and now. O that today we would harken to His voice and harden not our hearts!’ Karl Barth

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Gleaming like an Amazon woman, he posed full-breasted in a tight dress–more woman than woman herself. In truth, this man on the cover of Time Magazine is a cartoon of a woman. Yet tragedy trumps comedy here; his artificial extremities emerge from the wound of a masculine soul that no amount of surgeries or hormones can restore.

Time featured him as an icon of ‘America’s Transition’ (get it?), the brave new world of gender anarchy in which ‘men in deep V-necks and necklaces walk by women with crew cuts and flannels next to boys kissing boys with pink backpacks alongside silver-haired women with broad shoulders.’ A year after the Supreme Court legalized ‘gay marriage,’ we now face the transgender transformation (one gender seeking to become the other) which Time describes as the next great civil rights battlefield in America, great because it will further ‘refine’ our understanding of gender diversity.

We who sowed indifference as activists redefined marriage now reap the whirlwind. This next ‘transition’ is a further hemorrhaging of God’s image, one most destructive to confused children who at this very moment are being primed for ‘gender reassignment’ because at 5 and 6-years-old they ‘feel’ different from their same-gender peers.

Dr. Paul McHugh, the former psychiatrist in chief at John Hopkins Hospital, debunks the myth that transgender surgery solves the profound wound at the core of gender identity disorders. He writes in the Wall Street Journal (June 14th):

‘We at John Hopkins studied the outcome of transgender surgery and discovered that those who underwent the operation fared no better psycho-socially than those who did not undergo surgery. So we stopped doing sex-reassignment surgery…A more recent study revealed that 10 years after having the surgery, the transgendered began to experience increasing mental difficulties. Most shockingly, their suicide mortality rose almost 20-fold above the comparable non-transgender population.’

He exhorts us to undo what amounts to abusing confused kids who are being groomed for a sex-change. ‘Treatment must involve removing the young person from the suggestive environment (including school curriculums that advocate “everything is normal”) and offering a counter message in family therapy…the best way to help kids is through devoted parenting.’ He concludes: ‘“Sex-change” is biologically impossible…Claiming that this is a civil rights matter and encouraging surgical intervention is in reality to collaborate with and promote a mental disorder.’

What can we do today? Extend the mercy of Jesus Christ and His healing Kingdom for persons in your world who are evidently gender confused. Pray for them. Defend them against bullies. A young African-American man at my gym acted and dressed outrageously; he was tormented by the guys there. Jesus told me to draw near to him and befriend him and to be his advocate. I helped him to receive the Father’s blessing on his masculinity.

I had the privilege of doing the same for a 4-year-old boy at my former church; his parents asked me to talk and pray with him about the goodness of his maleness as he expressed desire to be a girl. Jesus helped him at a tender age to be reconciled to the boy Jesus made him. His parents cooperated; his dad drew near and began to fight for his son’s dignity, not his mutilation.

Jesus brings a Kingdom that surpasses foolish solutions. We do little good by merely railing against bad social trends. Do something. Act like a Christian. Fight for the dignity of persons subject to cruel, dehumanizing precedents and people.

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