Author Archives: Brandon

What is worship

I have been reading in 1st and 2nd Kings.  Some kings did well and some really bad.  You would think that what made them a good kings was their ability to lead the nation, manage the economy, and keep God’s enemies at bay.  Not the case…   What made them successful in God’s eyes was their reaction to idols.  Some kings worshiped idols, some just allowed it.  These kings were considered to be sinful.  Then their were kings that led people to God to worship in God’s temple.  They prohibited worshiping of idols.  They were considered good kings.  Then there was the best of the kings.  They tore down the worship places for idols.  They burned them to never be used again.  

Then I had to ask what is an idol… Is it an image made of something?  If that is the case…  I have never worshiped an idol.  Doing some research I found an idol is now an image, but an idol is anything you like, love, or trust more than you like, love, and trust God.  Have there been things that I have liked, loved, or trusted more that God?  Yes.  I am guilt of idolatry.  I do not want to have an idol.  David was considered a great king of Israel, I think one of the reasons he was great was he prayed prayers like this:

Psalm 139:23 Search me, O God, and know my heart;
    test me and know my anxious thoughts.
24 Point out anything in me that offends you,
    and lead me along the path of everlasting life.

Can you imagine inviting someone to search the inner most parts of your heart?  You would really have to like and trust them.  He goes a step further and invites searching the anxious thoughts.  A person who invites searching the broken places is a person who wants to please Jesus.  This is a person who wants to worship without being held back.  “Point out ANYTHING…”  What if we prayed this way?  What if we worshiped this way?  ANYTHING is complete trust.  It speaks a level of relationship he had with God.  You would only open up at that level when you knew they would handle your heart in a safe way.  “Lead me” is true humility because you recognize your need to be led and that you don’t have all the answers.  

Who do you let search your deepest thoughts?  Who is worthy to test your actions?  Who will you let into the offensive ways about you? Who is worthy to lead you to everlasting life?  This person is WORTHY of your worship!  They are the only one worthy to like, love, and trust more than any other.  

photo-1457630248828-ae1a83d48b79Worship is to lie prostrate in the dust.  I challenge you today to lay prostrate before the ONE who is WORTHY to know your deepest thoughts, test your actions, call out your offensive ways, and lead you to LIFE!  Worship is not a sound or a lyric, it certainly isn’t a song written in a certain time… Worship is to let Jesus be declared worthy of praise and following His lead.  

Recklessly, obsessively following Jesus

Brandon Sereg

Purpose in Every Step

Somethings happen by accident, great things don’t.  Championships are not won by accident.  Marriages do not happen by accident.  Great musicians are not developed by accident.  Wars are not won by accident.  Great things happen by tremendous focus, consistency, and discipline. The problem is focus often requires us to say a lot of “no” to say a really important “yes.”  Consistency can easily feel boring and routine.  Discipline can feel like a fun sucker. 

Freedom from sin, shame, and a life without purpose does not happen by accident… The apostle Paul said…

photo-1444075107151-b2090be893371 Corinthians 9:26 So I run with PURPOSE in EVERY step. I am not just shadowboxing. 27 I discipline my body like an athlete, training it to do what it should.

I would say some people put some purpose in some steps, even fewer put purpose in many steps, and it is rare to meet people who put purpose in every step.  When we meet the person who puts purpose in every step we marvel at their success. 

We just finished the olympics, and Michael Phelps is for sure the greatest olympian of our time.  He wakes us and visualizes the race, his diet is fuel for his body, his training breaks him and builds him, his sleep is on a schedule.  There is PURPOSE in EVERY step!  

We are not training for the olympics.  We are training to show the love of an invisible God to a visible neighbor.  We are training to live in victory from sin, death, and the power of the enemy.  We are training to live a life that is “rich and satisfying” as Jesus promised.  Paul said the way we get to live this kind of life is by living with purpose in every step.  We embrace focus, consistency, discipline, and at times suffering because we want to live and be like Jesus.  Jesus showed us what this life looks like and how to respond to sin, temptation, the enemy, and suffering.

So where do you need to find freedom?  Where do you need to focus?  Where do be consistent knowing your are investing in a greater fulfillment than temporary fun?  Where do you need to create discipline to live the life that Jesus planned for you?

Write it down right now and Holy Spirit to give you the grace to live it out!

Recklessly, obsessively following Jesus

Brandon Sereg

Everything? Really?

When I was 15, all I wanted was a car. If I had a car, I would have independence, mobility, and most important FREEDOM. I would no longer be dependent on mom to give me a ride across town or going places on a bike. If I had a car, I would have EVERYTHING… or so I thought.

Now I am 30 and a car turned into… If I had a degree I would have EVERYTHING… If I was married… If I had kids… If I was debt free.. If I had that job… If I had a retirement fund… I would have EVERYTHING…

Then it becomes not enough… This week I was in scripture and I came to these verses…

John 10:10 The thief’s purpose is to steal and kill and destroy. My purpose is to give them a rich and satisfying life

1 John 5:12 Whoever has the Son has life; whoever does not have God’s Son does not have life.

If I have Jesus… I have EVERYTHING. If I have Jesus and live the way He leads… I get the rich and satisfying life He promised. It all start with knowing Jesus and being submitted to the way he leads.

Now lets look at the alternative. The thief comes to steal, kill, and destroy. So our options are rich and satisfying or death and destruction. On the surface it seems like an easy choice. Yet Jesus said the road to this rich and satisfying life is narrow and hard to find, and the road to destruction is wide and popular.

So what do you typically choose? Popular decision or narrow challenge. You can’t do anything about what you have done up to today, but you can choose what you will choose today. So where do you need to choose life? What do you need to do to choose Jesus? Go do it!

Recklessly, obsessively following Jesus

Brandon Sereg

How do you love a God you cannot see?

Have you ever noticed how it is hard to love people you do not see often?  Parents, grandparents, friends who have moved away… Loving them when we do not see them takes a lot of effort.  When I get in my truck I do not think about who to call that I have not seen in a while. I think about listening to a book or a podcast, or think about my day, but rarely about grandma.  Now I love her very much, and would drive for hours to go and see her.  Loving Grandma is hard because I rarely see her. 

I think some of us feel this way about God.  We LOVE Jesus, but struggle to know how to love Jesus when we do not see him.  It is not a lack of desire, but what is out of sight is often out of mind.  So how do we love a God we cannot see?

Matthew 22:36 “Teacher, which is the most important commandment in the law of Moses?”

37 Jesus replied, “‘You must love the Lord your God with all your heart, all your soul, and all your mind.’ 38 This is the first and greatest commandment. 39 A second is equally important: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’ 40 The entire law and all the demands of the prophets are based on these two commandments.”

photo-1464195244916-405fa0a82545Now first off, if you are a religious leader in this time, you have spent 30 years learning the law and the prophets and Jesus has the audacity to say it can all be learned in two simple sentences.  You would either feel cheated in the years of learning that could have been a conversation, or you feel like it could never be that easy.  Jesus says the most important commandment is not to not sin, but to show the crazy love of Jesus to the Lord.  Then He tells us the way to love the God we cannot see is to love our neighbor that we can see.

So the next question is, who is my neighbor.  Jesus teaches this in the story of the good Samaritan.  In our culture, this would be like the story of the good “Nazi.” Jesus blows up their thoughts of loving their own people who think, dress, and believe like them and says the good neighbor is the one who crazy loves the GLBT, ISIS, democrats or republicans, atheists, muslims, or anyone else to does not think, dress or believe the way you do.  Jesus said the way to love them is not to argue with them and tell them they are wrong, but to serve them and tell them about Jesus (message of hope not judgement).  Serve people who are different than you by serving them and telling them how Jesus changed your life is loving a God you cannot see.

So who do you need to crazy love this week?  Who thinks you hate them, that you can serve with no strings attach?  Who’s tank can you fill?  Who’s lunch can you buy? Who can you give a ride to? Who’s lawn can you mow?  Who can you sit with at lunch? Go LOVE the God you cannot see by LOVING the neighbor you can see.

Recklessly, obsessively following Jesus

Brandon Sereg

The Biggest Looser

I love the show the biggest looser. I love the peoples stories.  I especially love week 1 where they loose a ton of weight.  That first week their workouts are sloppy, people are crying, throwing up, and wanting to quit.  They have to choose what they want more… Do they want to live a long life, be active with their families, and loose the weight… knowing they will have to embrace pain, vomit, and change.  Or they can choose to be obese, spend their lives sitting, and die at an early age… not have to hurt by exercise, eat whatever they want, and not change.  They have a choice, it seems easy on the surface, but to do the biggest looser they will have to overcome years of bad habits.

I see people all the time that are not spiritually fit.  People who wander why their faith has grown cold and they haven’t prayed in months.  Marriages who are facing divorce but never asked someone for help.  Parents who’s kids hate church, but taught them church was a priority as long as it didn’t interrupt football, baseball, the lake, weekend at home, grandma’s house, or anything else that came up this week.  Then you meet people that spend time getting the Word in them everyday, they have a vibrant prayer life, they serve people everywhere they go, they walk in humility by inviting wiser people into their lives before there is a problem.  They have a joy all over them though they may face the same circumstances of those listed before.  What is the difference?

photo-1453844598634-41bfc63e7b231 Corinthians 9:24 Don’t you realize that in a race everyone runs, but only one person gets the prize? So run to win! 25 All athletes are disciplined in their training. They do it to win a prize that will fade away, but we do it for an eternal prize. 26 So I run with purpose in every step. I am not just shadowboxing. 27 I discipline my body like an athlete, training it to do what it should. Otherwise, I fear that after preaching to others I myself might be disqualified.

Where do you need to walk in discipline?  Are you spending time with Jesus everyday?  Are you in the Word? Are you serving others?  Do you have community in your life to lead you?  How much of your prayer time is talking vs. listening?

God is for you and has called us to live focused lives so we can enjoy the results of disciple.  Now hear me.  If you do a disciplined life, God will not love you more.  If you do not He will not love you less.  You are not earning anything here.  You are getting to know the character, confidence, strength, humility, power, refreshing, and love of a Father who wants to put His nature in you.  It is an invitation into a full life of His goodness.

So what do you need to do today to walk in disciple? Plan it, wake up early, go to be late, you are not shadow boxing my friend!  Jesus has great things for you today!

Recklessly, obsessively following Jesus

Brandon Sereg

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