Saturday, August 5, 2023


 Given half a chance, we’d rather beat the donkey than open our eyes to see what’s right in front of us. Especially if what’s in front of us would make us feel uncomfortable, throw a wrench in our five-year plans, or dispel some fanciful notion we clung to as though it were life itself, we’ll lash out at anyone with the viciousness of a beast just to avoid it.

Even though Balaam couldn’t see the donkey, by the third time it acted out of character, he should have concluded that something was amiss. It was uncharacteristic of the donkey to be so insubordinate, and after being given the ability to speak, the donkey is quick to point this out.

Sometimes we abuse the messenger because we don’t like the message they have been tasked with delivering. We are so angry at their words that we do not take the time to consider their veracity or whether they have a biblical foundation. We strike out like the Balaam of old, indignant at the prospect of being corrected or having something stand in the way of what we want.

Could you imagine being so enraged that you gloss over the fact that your donkey is now speaking to you, and you still want to hurt it for not doing as you commanded?

Before you strike out at the messenger, you must determine whether their words are Biblical and Scripturally sound. You may be beating the donkey for no good reason while it’s trying to save your life. If the answer is yes, then it is incumbent upon you to take the time and be diligent in examining and scrutinizing the message to ensure that it’s not just a thin scriptural outer shell with a bunch of deception baked in the middle.

The follow-through of studying to show yourself approved unto God is on you. You are responsible for what you allow to take root in your heart. You are responsible for what you choose to believe and what you choose to discard.

Given that we are predisposed to embrace what we like, what validates our choices, and what makes us feel good about ourselves, the notion that your heart bore witness to it, so you believe it wholesale is folly. Is it biblical? Is it scripturally sound? That is the standard, not whether it gives you the warm fuzzies.

Words from the Lord are usually corrective or prophetic regarding some future event, whether in your personal life, a particular nation, or the world. The idea that prophecy is the vehicle by which God cheers you on and is beside Himself at the minutest of progress is a new one, created and branded in the modern era to the great joy and exuberance of the masses.

Our relationship with God is that of a general to His soldiers, not of a momma bird to a slow-witted baby bird. There’s a marked difference between needing encouragement through a trial and being praised for finishing your peas. God is there in your darkest hour. He is there to give strength and to embolden, to fortify, and to energize.

That we’re expecting Him to throw us a week-long celebration because we didn’t hit the snooze button for a fourth time, and we only made it to church thirty minutes late is allegorically telling of how infantilized the average Christian is nowadays.

Speak nice things to me, encourage me, lift me up, be gentle, don’t offend my sensibilities, don’t challenge my sinful life, don’t tell me God requires more than I’m already doing, and we can be friends.

At a certain point, I have to choose whether I’m going to make you happy or make God happy. If you think I’m going to be more afraid of your stick than an angel of the Lord with a drawn sword, you’ve got another thing coming. Yes, I know getting hit with a stick hurts. It wouldn’t be the first time, and it likely won’t be the last, but being cut by a sword hurts worse, so you do what you must do, and I’ll do what I must do.

Since the stick didn’t seem to work, the enemy tried a carrot, and that’s when he had his eureka moment. Men will usually be more fearful of God than men’s retaliations, but if you offer men baubles and trinkets, gold and silver, and all manner of fame, their conviction falters, and their desire is no longer to please God but be praised by men. The bigger the carrot, the more likely they are to fold, and there’s no shortage of carrots as far as the devil can see.

I was at a conference a few years back, and one of the other speakers approached me after my presentation, introduced himself, shook my hand, and asked, “What’s your angle?” I was a bit taken aback at first, not understanding what he was asking, but as it dawned on me, I shrugged my shoulders and said, “I don’t have one.”

No funnels, no paywalls, no special word for a hundred bucks, or a personal prophecy for five hundred; what you see is what you get for better or worse. I’ve been in ministry for a very long time, and I have the scars to prove it, and throughout the years, I’ve walked away from more money than you can fathom just to maintain my integrity intact.

Whether proffered the carrot or the stick, I’m still more fearful of the angel with the drawn sword. You may not like me for it, may think me myopic, and conclude that I’ll never be on Oprah with that kind of attitude, but those are all things I can live with. Rebellion and disobedience are not.

With love in Christ,

Michael Boldea, Jr.  


meema said...

I can't think of a single true man of God who was not a maverick, an outlier, a single purposed individual who cares only for what God thinks of him, and not what the world thinks. It's a lonely road sometimes but I have found comfort in knowing that He will not forsake me so I am committed to never forsake Him, like the fickle world does over and over.


Steve Hollander said...

We have to live with our choices, or perish with them. Good message today.