Come ye sinners poor and needy

Overcoming frustration in the way of faith

August 27, 2013

Dealing with opposition in the way of walking by faith!

Any human who spends any amount of time on this planet will experience suffering of some type or sort. Such is the result of the mother of all living making that fateful decision to take of the visibly beautiful fruit of the tree of the knowledge of good AND evil.

When any man puts his mind and in turn his fingers to writing on the topic of suffering, he must first have experienced something of the uniqueness of the kind of suffering that is experienced in pursuit of a holy cause. 

To fight for the betterment of humanity with a genuine desire to lift humanity out of misery, to raise up the down fallen and the broken to a higher place of existence. To change perspective from the low pursuit of gain and personal happiness to something of a higher value, something true, something noble, pushing against evil to encourage things to happen beyond that we currently see and which are bigger and of a far better value then what men are experiencing in the current hour.

This article is for those who have been through the "beat down" as a change maker, those who are in the process of seeking to walk out THE way of faith as a true christian. You have chased God's will and now find yourself riddled and rattled by seemingly unending frustrations and weird turns and twists that most of the time do not make logical sense to our tired human brains.

If you have stepped out of the mundane and lifted your heart to the heavens and cried for positive change in your family, town, church, or business, most sincere people find themselves confused by the process of delay and nonsensical push-backs at varying points along the way. Some of us have even come to the place where doubt has crept subtly into our mind and we begin to wonder why God, Our incredibly loving Father, lets us feel so much pain deep down in the depths of our soul.

What we lose in stuff we gain in wisdom and true understanding. At every hard turn, at the point of emotional disappointment and physical pain we exercise our faith as a muscle and we develop our faith and our love for our Father in heaven.

What I determine to bring forth in this article is a perspective on the suffering caused by pursuing high goals that have little to do with your personal comfort. Not the suffering that we create by in a selfish cause, the kind of suffering associated with a person who provokes evil by imposing his self-will on his neighbors and eventually experiences the reciprocal effect of the negative societal effect of reaping what they have sowed. 

But to be honest, even for this member of humanity there is still hope.

As followers of the Lord of the Kingdom of Heaven, we must be encouraged that one day soon we will dance in the blood of our spiritual enemies, those very fortresses of evil that have been commissioned by the Evil One to mete out our hardship, and on all of God’s people who seek to please Our Father in heaven.

If you have never suffered for a righteous cause then this article is not for you.

When I turn to the scriptures for comfort in times of confusion and uncertainty, many times I am led to scriptures that reveal the realities associated with those men and women who were called to live a life of faith and a life of resistance against evil. Men and woman who walk by a different order and in turn live life in a radically different way.

Heb. 11:1-3

By Faith We Understand

Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen. For by it (faith) the elders obtained a good testimony. By faith we understand that the worlds were framed by the word of God (not time and circumstance), so that the things which are seen were not made of things which are visible.

 

Notice how the first section of the “faith” chapter ends with the phrase, “things which are visible”

We are in a fix here on earth. We are constantly bombarded with the things which are seen to the point where we are brought to succumb to submit to a state of numbness to emotional realities of what we are trying to change. Oftentimes we can allow the pressure of the world system change our perspective and in turn we are tempted to submit to the whims and wiles of materially based thinking, it is here that we get to the place of being truly frustrated with our circumstances and for some of us we come to the place of wanting to give up.

If you have faced these times, you could almost be tempted to give up entirely on the way of faith, retire back to a life of ease, kick back and take your seat in a pew of some decent church or even your home, resigning yourself to the work of watching others take their stab at radical faith living. 

My dear friends, the reality of what we are facing here on this side of redemption is a calling and life made of such a high level of holy resistance and focus that if we don't stick it out all the way to the grave we will be ashamed at the Day of His appearing. For He, Our Christ has modeled holy resistance and has secured a Seed of faith by virtue of His blood shed on the cross.  

Those people of old who walked by a supernatural faith that we are instructed to emulate in Heb 11, for many of these this continuing on in faith through darkness of multiple setbacks meant dying a gruesome death at the point of a sword or martyr’s fiery stake of torture. Thus they earned the right to be mentioned in the faith chapter in Hebrews to encourage us that many have endured much more and stay faithful than we have in our very seductive and dark world today.

If I am tapping into something you feel today, broken and tired, and if this is where you are find yourself today emotionally than you and I are on the same page and at the same place in our journey.

I made a decision many years to take a real walk with God. Inspired by the life of Abram and the words found in Gen 12:1

Now the LORD said to Avram, "Get out of your country, and from your relatives, and from your father's house, to the land that I will show you“

HNV Version

When I made that fateful decision to go for more of God, I wanted to show God my love for Him by doing the “what-evers” of the faith walk. I continued to maintain a heartfelt desire to walk straight into the pages of scripture to find out what it really means to walk by faith on a experiential level.

After I surrender in public, and that with a wife and 5 kids back in 2004, the rest and three additional kids are chronicled on this blogsite.

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Have you felt the urge to go for “more” with God?

When I was a young man I went to a couple different christian youth conferences that were filled with words that were presented in such a way that I felt as if the teaching and preaching were as daggers penetrating into the depths of my soul, to numb those feelings I fought back through the subsequent years with more religion and better religion, I chose that path to cloak myself in self-righteousness and a more righteous and churchy way even to the point of spiritual nausea.

While I was burying God's call in my pathetic religious garments, I could not resist being the one at our church prayer sessions who prayed with all the real passion I could muster. I prayed for God to move in the world. I prayed for our missionaries to penetrate darkness with bold gospel preaching, and over time and years the feeling in my heart that I thought I buried deep down inside of me was truly God's effectual whisper urging me to go.

Fast forward to today, August 2013, my life of living by faith is full of frustration, no church home, no real local Christian friends, my business success in order to make a honest living for a very large family have been flipped over time and time again, as a result my heart seems as dull as it was in the earlier days of my Christian pilgrimage long before those fateful days back in 2001 when I promised to do whatever was needed to bring America back to God.

My conclusion recently is that my personal setbacks and real marketplace struggles are part of grander narrative that is based in my original call to walk with God. To live in the wildness of the unknown tomorrows and to find a way to do it without the emotional ups and downs.

To live as a child before the Lord, so as to avoid the over sophistication of the pretenses found in Our Americanized version a dualistic materially based Christianity.

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Now turning back to the original call of Abraham.

What in the physical world was before and around Abraham when God’s invisible voice entered his life and penetrated down into his heart?

Evil and oppression.

Gen 11 tells us of the works of Nimrod and of his vicious method world government. Nimrod was so harsh he would exterminate any person who would disagree with him and his laws.

I recommend to you the words from the book of Jasher that take a deeper look into this time in human history, here you will learn more of the life of Abraham and the governorship of the wicked man -- Nimrod.

In the book of Jasher we find out that Abraham was thrown into the fire to be killed by Nimrod because he was righteous and would not bow down the gods of his fathers. Like Shadrach, Meshach, and Abed Nego, he was miraculously delivered from certain death.

Abram was known as an authentic human being made in the image of the invisible Creator, the same Creator that Nimrod hated because his father was Satan himself. Nimrod was the first in a long line of anti-christ figures found in the pages of human history.

Abraham was set apart from his youth for God’s service. Abraham was caught between the realities of living in a world run by darkness and following the Living God. Abraham was a real man of faith before he ever set his feet to walk to the land of Canaan, the land of His Promises.

But what of our time?

We live in a similarly demonic time as when Abraham was alive in the land of Babylon. Our world is so wicked and given over to idolatry. Our churches are laced with the worship of idols, and this they do unknowingly.

There is little Gospel power in the churches, what is power is found to be not according to knowledge, in effect, we are left in a state of unsureness, because we don’t know how to view the churches that are growing rapidly in our time, and which seem to be doing the work of the Great Commission, we are unsure because so much of what is being taught is not based in an authentic and historically accurate presentation of the Gospel of Jesus Christ.

Whole pieces of the Gospel message are not brought forth in full clarity and the Spirit and in the Truth are not joined together. It’s like eating part of the meal and still feeling hungry but then to find out that those pieces you just ate were the entire meal… something inside you suggests that you have been cheated out of something, you just don’t know what it is!

In our modern world, man is set forth as God, through the means of the ever expanding world of high technology and sub second worldwide communication, man is seemingly capable of anything, including communicating with other entities in space.

 

Knowledge is on the increase both mystically acquired and in the truths uncovered and gleaned and understood by the history books and diligent study, this because so much of what was written is coming to light in this digital age, both the good and the evil.

We are heading out of the time of super power dominance through military force to a time where nation status is weakening, and a false peace and a way is being offered to mankind that will bring humanity to an elevated state of being through worldwide unity of thought and way of life.

Worldwide Oneness is being setup by breaking down all cultural differences through a new - yet to be unveiled in its full expression - religion.

Today we are told that we are part of a grand experiment of time and circumstance and it is our duty to find oneness with the universe through meditation, nutritional supplements and diversely acquired spiritual knowledge from every corner of the earth.

Through knowledge, or a new gnosis, we are to grow into the image of God the Creator, to find our oneness through a spiritual pursuit. The unknown and the unseen are now our friend but in the way of a chasing after a false light, simply put, a Luciferian way. A way that doesn’t require access through the blood of a perfect Messiah, the One and Only -- Jesus of Nazareth.

As Solomon said in the book of Ecclesiastics three millennia ago, “there is no new thing under the sun”

This kind of one world religion has been tried time and time again. If you take the time to compare these concepts with what was going on during the time of the call of Abraham, you will see the same evil players.

So the same kind of faith is required of any who would chase after God in order to stay true today as was required in the days of Abraham.

The same kind of God/man relationship. The call to Abraham was personal. An all-powerful eternal entity, none other than the One and Only Triune God, called one of his creation, a human being made in His image, out of the world system filled with lies, to start anew.

He was called understandably to go to a certain place on planet Earth to be made a father of a chosen nation who would obey His holy laws and walk in paths of righteousness. A new earthly community was to be reestablished, built again in the way of truth and holiness. A place of true peace and shalom. Where everyone would have his or her share, no one would have to worry about his stuff being stolen or having his neighbor take his freedom to live and enjoy his land and his family.

The Personal and Loving Creator would show him why he made man. He made man perfect and he made man for fellowship. He made man for the Earth. To enjoy life on the planet especially designed for His and their pleasure.

The Voice that called Abraham was personal and it was according to his understanding as a man. In a language known to Abraham. To a call that led to a way that made sense in the basic content of what was being presented.

No mystery other than where the actual dwelling place for his clan and the timing of the divine blessing that was promised to come.

 

The way of faith was based in receiving a known promise that would be experienced in an unknown place, the way of faith required adherence to the word of promise, not based in the physical sight of a blessed and beautiful place.

Satan when tempting Our Lord Yeshua used physical things to tempt our Lord to worship Him. He lifted up Jesus in the spirit realm and showed Him all the nations and their opulence, saying to Our Precious Savior that if He would simply bow down worship Him that all these would be His.

How could Satan actually believe that something that was already the Lord’s, the nations, planet earth, was his to offer to His Maker?

What is revealed here is the mind and the strategy of Satan to bring humans down to judgment.

Satan has been given the nations and the earth governmental system as his play toy for the here and now. For a given period of time he has the exclusive right granted to him from Our Lord God in Heaven to be allowed to play with the minds and hearts of the sons of men.

Why?

To test the hearts and minds of the sons of men.

We have it all as true sons and daughters of God. Those of us who have received the word of reconciliation from heaven, we have the entire earth as our inheritance. We get it all in the end.

But in the meantime Satan is desiring our worship of him, he uses lots of stuff, material things to allure us, and also to show us things that we presently don’t have to make us frustrated.

Eph 2:1-3 explains this reality quite clearly:

You were made alive when you were dead in transgressions and sins, in which you once walked according to the course of this world, according to the prince of the powers of the air, the spirit who now works in the sons of disobedience; among whom we also all once lived in the lust of our flesh, doing the desires of the flesh and of the mind, and were by nature children of wrath, even as the rest.

HNV Version

Satan plays with us even though we are already blessed as the true sons and daughters of God. Even though we are sealed for the day of redemption. For the Lord will have a people for Himself, His sufferings and His real blood shed for His people is a guarantee that a people will be gathered in That Day.

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So what do we do when circumstances don’t go our way? When we finally break down and reach to heaven for help we are reminded who we are, God’s word over us echoes back into our heart, the Spirit of Christ stirs us to believe again. Believing again in the words of promise that have been spoken over us and over our material lives here on Earth. Those things which have been secured by Our Loving Redeemer, and those words which point to our eternal destiny in Him and in His Love.

 

Today, let’s realize afresh that we are always in the pressure cooker of what we see in this world, all of which is specifically designed by the evil one to make us angry or frustrated with the clear intent to get us to quit on our blessings to come.

As Our Lord modeled for us in the Garden of Gethsemane, we must live with our eyes above the things that we can clearly see are wrong with the world and what is clearly not right with the church and see by faith the glory of the things that are yet to be revealed in the sons of God. Those who pass the tests found in this side of the Jordon and on this side of inheriting the Kingdom of His Righteousness.

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At my mother’s funeral, back in May 2002, I was led to meditate on these words found in Rom 8 and share them with my brothers and sisters and to all those who were in attendance:

The Spirit himself testifies with our spirit that we are children of God; and if children, then heirs; heirs of God, and joint-heirs with Messiah; if indeed we suffer with him, that we may also be glorified with him. For I consider that the sufferings of this present time are not worthy to be compared with the glory which will be revealed toward us. For the creation waits with eager expectation for the sons of God to be revealed. For the creation was subjected to vanity, not of its own will, but because of him who subjected it, in hope that the creation itself also will be delivered from the bondage of decay into the liberty of the glory of the children of God. For we know that the whole creation groans and travails in pain together until now.

HNV Version

With that section of scripture before our minds let's take heart dear christian brother and sister, those of you who have taken on the difficult assignments that require more than just looking the part of a christian.

May His peace and comfort work deep into your soul today, for only through His Spirit can we find that peace that passes understanding.

Shalom to all of you in Christ’s bonds of love that are inseparable to those who have been called and separated unto Him and His Glory.

Jonathan

 

Soul Crucified with Christ

May 13, 2013

Can you and I ever get to the place of living in a way where we are constantly winning against the evil on the inside of us and in the world around us?   

Is it possible to begin a new life where we are consistently overcoming the seductive temptations that confront us every day in our very fast paced, tempestuous and very pagan society?

The kind of temptations that capture control of our redeemed mind and put us in a mind-numbed 
temporally based state of being. 

What and where do these sinful t...


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Come & See

January 16, 2013

What if church goers could actually see and feel the glory and presence of God in the sanctuary?  

What we know of anyone who has seen or felt His Glory in real time reveals to us a sense of a greater intensity of emotion than the modern user friendly church goer currently is ready to accept. 
 

Historical encounters of men meeting God, whether angelic, or booming voices, or direct theosophic encounters on the order of Abram's tent meeting announcing the birth of Isaac, and especially of Moses...


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LLI Fellowship Hope for 2013

January 1, 2013

Loving friction makes for true unity

The spoken word of G-d uttered at the dawn of creation did not create man a boring kind of bland, and so simplistic a substance without each man or woman owning the glorious addition of individualized uniqueness, what we commonly see in the face of human beings everyday. This reality clearly reveals in the heart of Our Creator in making diversity of people and of gifts in people.

The more we study the micro-substance of human cell structure and the DNA o...


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Extravagant Worship is the byproduct of Loving G-d

December 28, 2012

Extravagant Worship is a byproduct of Loving G-d

In the last five years I have attempted to write many words of instruction and exhortation to hopefully influence my generation for the glory of G-d and hopefully in turn positively impact the generation following mine. When I look back over the topics I have written about I find most of my frustration lies in the division I see in the so-called Christian church in the US.

If you were ever inclined to take the time to read every word I ever w...


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Why we don't celebrate Christmas

December 23, 2012


Why we don’t celebrate Christmas

Directly from the section in Ephesians where apostle Paul exhorts us to Walk in Light even as He is Light and in the Light we read:

8 For you were once darkness, but now you are light in the Lord. Walk as children of light 9 (for the fruit of the Spirit is in all goodness, righteousness, and truth), 10 finding out what is acceptable to the Lord. 11 And have no fellowship with the unfruitful works of darkness, but rather expose them. 12 For it is shameful e...


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Evaluating Risk from the Word of God

December 14, 2012

If you born of the Holy Spirit you will take risks

Perhaps the greatest risk a person can take is to jump out of an airplane trusting only in the fact that the parachute case will open when the release button is pressed.  Or perhaps the greatest risk is joining the infantry division of the US Army in a time of war.  

Or perhaps the greatest risk is to put your eternal welfare into the hands of an unseen God, divinely inspired to simply put all your trust in the heavenly words written by the...


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Division of Soul and Spirit

October 8, 2012

The Dividing of Soul and Spirit

A few weeks back I wrote, “without emotion, nothing happens” today I will attempt to bring more clarification to the idea that without an emotional encounter with God Almighty and His Spirit sent from heaven nothing of a long term benefit will happen in our lives and there will not be left behind in you a lasting and positive change.  And we will not insure our eternal destiny unless we have the Living God break down all our emotional fleshy way of thinkin...


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Without emotion… nothing happens!

September 3, 2012

Without Emotion…

Are you one of those analytical personalities that will examine a decision from every possible angle? Do you trust your mind to make the best decision?

If you struggle succumbing to a religious mindset, do you know what you are fighting? Do you fight internally with your tendency to be religious?  We assume that if one places a high emphasis on the mind to discern truth than you are prone to side with a church or group of people that defends their view of the faith with s...


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Fire immersion of Yahshua - The Jewish Messiah

May 21, 2012

The Fire Baptism of Jesus Christ!

I have witnessed over most of my adult life a high level of antagonism, fear, and confusion on what it means to be “baptized” in the Holy Spirit.

What I will refer to as the "fire" baptism of Jesus Christ. The term "fire baptism" flows directly off the lips of no less a prophet than the forerunner -- John the Baptist. At the point when he introduced the Savior of the Jews to the world (John 1).

A term that ultimately signifies the life changing reality ...


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Kingdom Support Services


Jonathan Keener Our call is to be true "christ" ians. Those little christ's who follow the Lamb wherever He goes. Who spread God's fame by proclaiming His message of reconciliation to our world. Playing our part in the epic work of the regathering of the Body of Christ in the Last Days. livinlattes@gmail.com

Where are the prophets?

The calling on my life is to walk in a path similar to those called as messengers of God's revelation to their generation. This would in no way conflict with the work of prophets who wrote the scriptures. The work of the modern day prophet brings his audience back to the written Word. 

This job or assignment is not typically for the pulpit, many times this call leads men and women to connect one on one with pastors, business leaders, divinely selected individuals, and in public forums which the Lord opens to proclaim His message of Reconciliation

LLI Mission & Values

May the Blessings of Yahweh rest on you

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The Path of Restoration of the Bride of Jesus Christ 

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Scattered Israel to be regathered


Jer. 31:10

"Hear the Word of the Lord, O you nations, and declare it in the isles afar off, and say: He who scattered Israel will gather him, and keep him, as a shepherd does his flock." 


 Reader, in touching on this point, I would not have you for a moment suppose that the future gathering of Israel depends on anything that man can do. God's counsels and purposes are independent of human strength. The sun will set tonight at its appointed hour, and neither Queen, Lords, nor Commons, Pope, President, nor Emperors — can hasten, prevent, or put off its setting. The tides of the sea will ebb and flow this week in their regular course, and no scientific decree nor engineering skill can interfere with their motion. 

And just in like manner, the promises of God concerning Israel will all be fulfilled in due season, whether we will hear, or whether we will forbear.


Bishop JC Ryle 1879

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Photos that tell our story

28 years of learning agape love!

The place where many a sincere conversation took place, the place where our family served our  community the very best coffee and smoothies we could deliver.

The crazy day of living on faith in 2007

Livin Lattes event downtown Pilot Mtn, NC

We felt the Power of His Presence in an alley

A most cataclysmic life event...2001

little did I know that witnessing this single event from the banks of the NJ side of the Hudson would be such an integral part of launching the LLI ministry

 The night that revealed that the Holy Spirit could use any 

kind of music to bring glory to His Name

Swing Low Sweet Chariot 

Baptizing McKenzie in Tom's Creek

back in NC - 2008

 Waterfall in En Gedi

Israel trip early 2007

A Time of Remembering

In our very brief time on the West Coast in 2011 

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We ask you to pray for the Living Water of Zion to flow to our world, to all our cities, and to every unique people group, that all would seek the power of His Spirit and be saved!


Our Eight Growing Spirit-Wrought Children

Our little baby girl - 7

Zoe Hannah Grace Keener

Who knows.... 

Zachariah - 11

4th boy - a chaser 

Taught himself how to ride a bike and swim, now running a football, we didn't know he wanted to do these things until we saw it happen with our eyes


Steve - 12

A good kid - God made him that way

a lover of people 

Matt - 14 

athlete - winner who loves the good things of life 

unknown skills yet to be revealed...


Seth - 17

Athlete - Baseball player

just wants to fix everything that is wrong with the world 


 Kayla - 20

loves accounting and life

future traveling CPA

Attending Appalachian State


Becca - 24

Princeton grad & London School of Economics grad looking to earn a PhD in the study of religion


Jenna - 26

Film Maker - Artist - Can do anything

The best barista in NC

Will own her own cafe someday...


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