Belly Fire

Yeah  yeah yeah….I know…you hear it in songs and there is a movie coming out soon but the reality is…..the truth is….the 100% awesome, I can’t always explain it, gotta put my hands up and scream it, get that fire in your belly….that GOD IS NOT DEAD!!!

But…..

You look at how we worship and you look at how we praise and yeah….it would be easy to say that God is dead.  Hold up, let me say that again for those that are not giving this post their entire attention.  LOOK AT HOW WE WORSHIP…..LOOK AT HOW WE PRAISE…..No wonder people say that God is dead.  In a lot of cases we do not really include Him in our worship.

I need to share this story, this true story!

I grew up in an awesome church.  Great friends, great summer retreats, great family life center that the older ladies would cook some awesome meals.  But, honestly, I did not know how to worship.  I think we were all too scared to clap or give out a shout.  Haha, I could have seen it now….all those heads turning around with eye balls peering over their glasses.  Of course I would have  pointed at my neighbor and be shaking my head.  I say this not to poke fun or criticize the churches that do sit still because that is not for me to judge the way that people worship.  I am sure that a lot of people are filled  with the Holy Spirit  while sitting still.  I know that I have been.  I say this because of the fact that WE as a CHURCH do criticize EACH OTHER!

It is like we as Christians are our own worst enemy.

Let me continue….I have always been passionate for Christian music.  That is one place that I can feel God the most.  But all too often we are scared to really let God be a part of our worship.  What would happen if we really gave it all to Him?  What would happen if we really did not care who was looking, or what people would think, or how we would look?  So, lately the David Crowder song “Oh, how He loves us” has really spoken to me.  I try and listen to it once a day, maybe more, maybe less.  Well, one place I can praise God with out caring how I look is….Ding Ding Ding….You guessed it….The Shower!  You would think I was trying to win a grammy, golden globe, oscar, or whatever they are called.  It is where I can feel The Holy Spirit (don’t run away because I mentioned the Holy Spirit, just keep reading….).  So I kept feeling the urge to step out of my comfort zone and worship God in church like I do in the shower.  I kept getting the urge to call, text, whatever, our praise and worship leader and ask that she would play that song.  AND of course I didn’t.  Next morning was Sunday and we slept in.  We bolted up and within 15 minutes we had 2 adults and 2 children out the door and in the van.  For those of you that do not realize how impressive that is, you will one day, its like running the 40 in 2.5 seconds!  Blah Blah Blah, we got to church and we  started praise and worship.  3 songs.  Toward the end of Amazing Grace, the second song, I started praying that God would take away my excuses.  3rd song starts….yup….David Crowders “Oh, how He loves me”!  My jaw wanted to hit the floor like Sebastian in the little mermaid did.  I felt such a tug that I had no choice but to throw my hand in the air…..wait let me really explain.  I am going to attach a very important video explanation, but I was a classroom, not a hold the baby!  But really who cares!  The point is I was so filled with the Holy Spirit (uh oh, there is that word again) that when I say fire in the belly, I mean FIRE IN THE BELLY!  Kristy said I was shaking, and let me tell you something…being baptized by the Holy Spirit is such an amazing feeling.  I mean really you walk outside and its like you can see clearer, all your senses are amplified.  Guys,  God is ready.  He is waiting on us.  Now sure next week I may be completely back to my hands in my pocket.  Now I have to complete this story and say that God does have a sense of humor.  Because the praise and worship leader came and sat with us during the sermon.  I mean that never happens and I was finally like “Ok  God, I hear ya”.

But we have to STOP putting GOD IN A BOX!  I am talking to YOU and ME!  For too long I thought the whole speaking in tongues deal was sometimes fake until I realized something.  I was putting God in a box.  Think about it for a minute, but also think about it often, God has done some pretty amazing things,  hasn’t He?  Oh, I don’t know HE MADE YOU AND I and THE WHOLE WORLD!  Not impressed yet?  Really?  How about the numerous miracles?  Sending his Son to DIE FOR OUR SINS?  RAISING HIM FROM THE DEAD?  The scriptures are filled with the amazing powers that God can, has, and will do!  Are you thinking about it?  So as Kalee would say it would be “easy squeezy apple peezy” for God to send his HOLY SPIRIT upon an entire church!  In fact, shame on us as the BODY of CHRIST if we do not strive for that every day!  As an old pastor of mine use to say “Don’t shut me down when I am speaking good!”

I read something the other night that was perfect for this post:

Nehemiah 9:3

New International Version (NIV)

They stood where they were and read from the Book of the Law of the Lord their God for a quarter of the day, and spent another quarter in confession and in worshiping the Lord their God.

A QUARTER OF THE DAY…in case you need help that is 6 hours reading and then another 6 hours (or quarter of the day) in confession and worship!  Huh, and we are tapping our feet and looking at our watches (oh wait…2014 no watches, Phones….we are looking at our phones) waiting for the sermon to end.

I think this should be a reality check for us all!

So I am going to challenge you today to do something:

Pray.  Ask God to show you where you are lacking in your worship.  Listen…..Keep Listening!

I would love to see your comments of how you stepped out of your comfort zone…so please share if you would like!

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7 thoughts on “Belly Fire

  1. Love this post! Oh how good it is to worship with reckless abandon in a country where we don’t have to hide and worship in secret. The video made me lol and reminded me of this video.

  2. Michael–PLEASE, PLEASE PLEASE Keep blogging-You have a gift. I remember, when I was going to a church where they sit/stand still while worshipping, being asked by a sweet lady to please sit in the back of the church because I made her sea sick during Worship time. It’s almost impossible for me to stand still when I Worship-. I move, I raise my hands, I can’t help it–it’s how I worship. Yes, there are times when I stand still in awe of who God is but more often then not the Holy Spirit within me, moves me. Singing Worship songs in the shower is dangerous for me cause I move too much. What made me really sad about that sweet lady at that church was that her eyes were on me and not Jesus. If we closed our eyes to those around us and focused on the one we worship I think we would be set free to Worship him with bellies on fire!

  3. Great blog Michael. I am guilty of the holding the baby hand raising. I think in our church we have all of about 5 people that hand raise. Songs get me too. The songs that really make me “hold the baby” and then cry like one are The Revelation Song and Mighty to Save… it feels great to have the holy spirit move through me during those songs. Adren watches me when those songs are on the radio or we sing them at church, I hope it impresses on him the magnitude of how great our God is.
    Keep blogging! You might inspire me to reach “field goal” one day 🙂

  4. Totally love this post!! I agree with Nancy you do have a gift for writing!!! I grew up in a church like that too 😦 So sad, they do not know what they are missing in worship by totally surrendering and lifting their hands to worship and praise to our LORD!!! PRIDE gets in the way, at least it was that for me until I surrendered. I am a hand raising girl, I’m a window washer 😮 ) LOVE THE VIDEO too!!! I LOVE JESUS ♥ !! Thanks so much for this post!!
    SHARING!!!

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