Neville Johnson

19 Apr 2009

Showing Mercy

in Bill Johnson, Christian ministry, Grace, Laura Woodley, Neville Johnson, non-profit organizations, perfomance, Showing Mercy, work mentality

The Catalyst

I've been working in non-profit organizations, churches and ministries for about 7 years now and recently, I have been SOOOO frustrated. It's been hard! People get bogged down with politics, lots of 'em have these emotional problems that interfere with their productivity, there seems to be a general absence of "getting things done" and "get up and go" and a little "up and at 'em" - and that drives me up the wall, and we're talking the "Wow, I think I need inner healing" wall.

Choosing Mercy

In light of the "loosing my marbles" feeling in my heart and life, I've been pressing in with my private at-home devotional time asking the Lord to do something. I've been soaking to Laura Woodley (Osman)'s cd's Home and In Love. You may have heard Laura on Tehilah Toronto's cd, Born of the Spirit. If you don't have her cd's, I recommend that you get them. She is my favorite soaking/devotional worship leader, and her albums are long-play The cd's are a little hard to find and I couldn't locate any mp3 downloads online, but it's worth buying the physical cd. You can listen to some of her songs on their Myspace.

I've been listening to a song on her In Love cd called Mercy on repeat. It's like Jesus therapy.
"Standing on the other side of forgiveness. You are different now, I can see it. Standing on the other side of all my angry walls, I don't judge you at all. I've been forgiven of more than I could ever be angry for, instead of judgment, I choose mercy."
I was also listening to a Bill Johnson message from Bethel weekend services podcast on Sunday, and he said (I'll probably butcher this quote) something like "The Lord has mercy and shows favor to groups with poor organization and structure because He cares about the people involved." He was also talking about how at the end of the day, we don't stand before the Lord with an org chart, but with the lives of people.

At those words, my conviction meter started rising. For quite some time, the perspective of my heart has been: "Now I could really make something of this if we had a better infrastructure and less silly people..." It's so easy to allow our motivations to gradually drift towards charts and graphs, schedules and meetings, lists, productivity and deliverables. And we keep telling ourselves that we're doing all this for Jesus.

I know I needed that reality check. I don't want to entertain the delusion that I'm neglecting my relationships for Jesus, that I'm snapping at people at work for Jesus, that I'm running over people, but it's okay because it's for Jesus...It's not for Jesus, and He doesn't like it. Jesus is not in the business of manipulating people (from my favorite Neville Johnson sermon, Understanding Grace) Just thinking on that one gets me. He's not into coercing them, or wringing them dry of their gifts, talents and abilities. Sacrificing for organized church isn't the Gospel of the Kingdom, loving people is.

In that earlier-mentioned message, Bill goes on to talk about showing grace. He says, "I'd rather show grace to someone, and find out later I've been tricked and they weren't as repentant as I thought, then to NOT show grace and stand before the Lord for my judgments."

Luke 11:46 Jesus replied, "And you experts in the law, woe to you, because you load people down with burdens they can hardly carry, and you yourselves will not lift one finger to help them.

Neville Johnson - Session 5

in Neville Johnson

Session 5 from the Lancaster California Conference
Click to Play

Neville Johnson - Understanding Grace Part 1

in Featured, Grace, Legalism, Neville Johnson

This is one of my all-time favorite messages. Click to Play

08 Apr 2007

If Anyone Thinks He Knows Something

in Chuck Missler, meditation, Neville Johnson, study

"The man who thinks he knows something does not yet know as he ought." I've been searching through the Greek and Hebrew, breaking out commentaries, diagraming sentences, perusing the midrash and Talmudic writings and consulting the perspective of early Church fathers. When I was younger, or maybe yesterday, and I received what I believed to be a new revelation, I would try and bring it up in every conversation, talk about it at every opportunity, and introduce people who may be unfamiliar to this new concept. But that scripture follows me around, and I'm discovering that the more I learn, the more context I develop, the more accurate translation I have, the more I discover how little I really know.

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