During my childhood my parents called me an “instigator”.
They blessed me with this label because I, like every boy with a sister on planet earth, would irritate and provoke her to the point she possibly wanted to die and/or kill me.
By the way, get used to hyperbole from me, I love it.
To be accurate, they probably should’ve labeled me an “irritant” but I don’t mind. Irritation Nation is nowhere near as catchy (or cool) as Instigation Nation.
Plus, a community of instigators is far better than a community of irritators.
Some time ago, a mentor of mine helped me discover something that changed my life forever, and it’s very simple to apply immediately.
He explained to me the importance of understanding the definitions of the words we use in communicating, and even their origins.
Take the word nice, for example.
Most people with kids, at some point, teach their kids to be nice to others. This sounds good or nice on the surface.
How many of us, though, know that the word stems from the original Latin word nescire meaning “not know” which led to nescius meaning “ignorant” and then in the 13th century gathered a meaning of “stupid”. Literally.
I understand things change over time and we’re not necessarily telling our kids to be stupid but I think we can gather that it couldn’t hurt to be more aware of the stuff we think and pass on.
For the record, I do not teach my kids to be nice and they are some of the kindest and loving people you’ll ever meet. And no, I’m not giving a word study on “kind” or “love”.
Why does that matter?
Well, in early 2016 I took my new wisdom and applied it to some of the labels I’ve been blessed with over the years and discovered some awesome things.
I’ll discuss only one for now. Yep, you guessed it, instigator.
When googled, the definition of instigator reads like this: a person who brings about or initiates something.
Check out some synonyms:
· Prime mover
Those are some pretty sweet-sounding names to me. Now, given that when most of us hear that word instigator, we tend to attach a negative meaning. Why is that? I don’t know and I don’t care.
What I know isGod changes labels and He doesn’t give a crap who’s behind the labeling or even the intended effect–which is normally negative.
See, an actual truth about God is that He calls things that are not a certain way as though they are that certain way . . . that’s a solid paraphrase of something the apostle Paul wrote to some Roman citizens a while back.
That’s when I really began thinking of the conversations I’ve had over the years with so-called “Christian” leaders and other church folk.
What else have I been indoctrinated with that simply isn’t true but I’m currently living in chains of?
Then I thought, “How many people could there be that would relate to this?”
How many could there be that have been fed heaping buckets of BS by their parents, pastors, religious teachers, friends, whoever, that God is this or God is that and you should and you shouldn’t … my God, I thought, I have to do something about this.
It’s been a passion of mine over the years to study and learn truth, regardless of my personal preferences and even current beliefs. In other words, I do not care what I think; I only want to know the truth. It doesn’t matter to me if something I believe or think turns out to be “wrong” as long as I’m convinced that the new info is true.
That being said, I have collected a lot of notes from sitting in church on Sunday morning. Some of those notes included critiques of the message I heard. And while I may have critiqued through my personal interpretation, it doesn’t mean that I thought someone was full of it or that I have all the answers–I do not.
Over the years I have amassed a fair amount of knowledge through study that I always implement in my life to achieve certain results.
Unlike Pharisees, I do not study so I can sound impressive to my friends or those I have influence with. I do not use what I’ve gained to act all holy for the façade I show people at the church potluck. I hate church potlucks. In my experience, chances are, when you leave you’re getting gossiped about anyway.
But why should my word be worth more than another’s in this context? What makes my critique true and not the professional pastor with the mic?
Results. Everything comes down to results.
I know this: when you walk away from being with me, you feel better about you than you did before you were with me … that goes for phone calls too 😉
I know that when a person is deep in moral turmoil (sorry for the rhyme–I won’t do it this time) leaves the average church-going person with their fish magnet on their bumper and bible in their hand, they feel worse … and often don’t come back around.
But why? Why do they feel worse?
Is it because they were “given the truth of GAWD & couldn’t handle it!!”? Nope. That’s not it. Not in most cases. (but could you hear the throaty southern Baptist tone?)
Is it because they’re just sinners who can’t understand God’s word? Nope again.
Maybe, just maybe, they finally built up the courage to discuss something personal or delicate with someone who they trusted could be a rep for Jesus in that moment as they were looking for hope and when they did they got a bible verse rocket-launched into their face with a “well, you shouldn’t be doing that! That is against God’s word! My sweet heavens, what a sinner you are.”
Then some version of this response takes place:
“Yeah, duh, that’s why I came here mother fucker. I was trying to get help for the first time since I was 13 and asked about abortion at Sunday school and the same type of self-righteous hypocrite you are said I was going to hell. You know what … forget this, I’m done.”
And clueless Pharisees aka pastors all around this country are acting like they don’t know why people are leaving the Church in droves.
Side note: if an occasional “cuss word” rattles you. Please find another place to get what you need. We live free here.
Okay, bottom line, who wants to have that happen to them? And if you’re like me, who can tolerate seeing people get treated that way?
I cannot tolerate it. I won’t tolerate it.
And there you have it–the summary of why Instigation Nation exists.
We’re going to help you get free of all the crap and live your life as God actually intends for you to live it.
We’re going to help you break the chains of human-imposed guilt and shame.
We’re going to help you lose the fears and anxieties affecting your mood more often than not.
We’re going to disrupt the false, dogmatic, and destructive religious programming that’s been implanted in you.
We’re going to help you live a life of freedom as you walk in step with your Creator in the most loving, dynamic, rooting-for-you-to-win relationship you could ever imagine.
Will we discuss other stuff too?
We’re going to hit the stuff we know and here’s a short list:
· Health and well-being
We will be sharing with the world stories of instigators who have and are changing their world and the world around them.
Let’s give a clear definition to the word Instigator as we define it (this may evolve):
An instigator, the way Instigation Nation sees them, is someone who embraces their self as the unique individual creation of God they are, while sparking their natural gifts & passions into flames that instigate positive change in the world they touch.
Do you have to “believe in God” to be loved and accepted around here?
Do you have to be a “Christian” to be an Instigator and part of Instigation Nation?
Do you have to be “religious”?
Please God, No.
The bottom line:
We love you and want you here.
We are going to talk about A LOT of stuff in this community and you’ll just have to understand the guy with the mic and keyboard (that’s me) is totally driven by 2 things:
1 – his relationship with the real Jesus, not the one some have tried to convince you He is.
2 – his love for people, namely the ones like him, IE you.
Speaking of the real Jesus … Ever seen that “JESUS IS MY BOSS” bumper sticker, t-shirt or hat?
My GOD, strike them dead. I almost pray that when I see those people sporting that false propaganda.
Jesus may be Lord but to equate Him to the dictator you work for is totally asinine and totally destructive.
That’s a taste of the attitude around here.
We’re real. Really real.
So is God.
We’re going to help you get to know Him, if you want to, and a whole lot more.
Think of Instigation Nation as your spiritual lifestyle community where you come for strengthening, encouragement, equipping and successful living tips.
I hope to see you around & I hope to hear from you (unless you want to get all religious and argue; Pharisees love to argue but I won’t do it)
Finally for now, I hope to inspire you to join our movement of faith, hope, & love, knowing YOU CAN live a kickass life and Instigation Nation is here to help you do it, your way.
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