Tuesday, February 11, 2020

Beyond Our Need

It has been said that there is a way of thinking in the western world,
     which declares everything to be connected by cause and effect -
          and if we only apply ourselves we can make of our world what we want.

Also it  is said that there is a way of thinking in the eastern world,
     which says that everything is chaotic, without order,
          and there is nothing can be done,
               except to try to cooperate with the chaos
                    in order to affect the outcome a little bit.

The Christian lives in a spiritual world where God the Creator dwells.
And it is God, and God alone, Who determines the movement 
     and the outcome of things on earth.
It is God Who determines the outcomes of our lives.

There is a phrase which resounds within me this morning, "He is the Creator." 
     "All things were made by Him." (Jn. 1.3)

John starts his gospel record, not with the account of the earthly story
     but by first presenting the heavenly context.
What happens on earth is the outworking of the Heavenly Kingdom,
     of the thing which God wills to do.

Sometimes it is necessary to lift our eyes, 
     until we no longer see the earthly workings of things, 
          until we see far above and beyond these things 
               that there is a God -
               "Who worketh all things after the counsel of his own will." (Eph. 1.11)

Unless our lives are grounded in this truth we will be like 
     "a wave of the sea driven with the wind and tossed." (Jas. 1.6)

                         This is Surety - this is Rest.
               Here is Purpose - and Here is Fulfillment.


Friday, February 7, 2020

Prerequisites of the Kingdom

Everything in the spiritual world is centered in God alone.

Everything in the enemy's world is centered deposing that order.

"But the natural man receiveth not the things of the Spirit of God: 
for they are foolishness unto him: 
neither can he know them, because they are spiritually discerned." (1Cor. 2.14)

"Verily I say unto you, Except ye be converted, and become as little children, 
ye shall not enter into the kingdom of heaven." (Mt. 18.3)

Paul's commission was:
"To open their eyes, and to turn them from darkness to light." (Acts26.18)

These few verses show the unbridgeable division between man's world 
and the spiritual world Jesus came to open.
     God alone opens this world and causes us to see.
  As we seek to understand the things of God we must first bow our knees, 
in a surrender body and mind to Him.

Paul says again, "What things were gain to me, those I counted but loss for Christ." (Phil.3.7)
     This is the only way to come.
          away from myself, and unto God.

How hard it is to turn away from the world of our own making,
the world of our experiences, our learning, our structures,
but I cannot pray "Thy Kingdom Come" unless I truly come to this place. 

 "Jesus ... and saith unto them, 
Children, how hard is it for them that trust in riches to enter into the kingdom of God!" (Mark 10.24)
     In a wider sense - riches are anything we trust in.

In the Kingdom of God, 
     the King is Present,
          the King is Ruling,
               the King is Working.

Without these 3 elements there is no Kingdom.
     And as we seek to draw near we turn 
     in utter surrender, 
          and utter dependence 
               on the work of God's Spirit within us.

Thus, will we find the Door to the Kingdom.

Tuesday, February 4, 2020

Kingdom Coming

"Thy Kingdom come." (Mt.6.10)

Each word of the phrase is tremendously important.

As we come to this prayer,
     the first thing we need to do is to ask God to show  us what "Thy" means -
          "Thy" - can never mean the same as "my!"

"THY" - everything else is excluded:
     It is God alone.
          It is an absolute separation unto God.
               It is an absolute dedication to God.

We cannot understand the dimension of this total separation unless God reveals it.
Our human nature is so predominant in all we think and do,
that we can only separate things if the Spirit of God quickens us to do so.

Our minds unaided cannot understand, or receive,
     the Kingdom of the One Who reigns alone.

This is a prayer of dependence.
     This is a prayer for that which alone has value. 

While I am trusting in myself I am denying God.
     Declaring my sufficiency is declaring God insufficient.
          Declaring my capability is a losing of the realm of God's supply.

The first part of the prayer says, 
"hallowed be Thy Name"...hallowed - set apart.
     It is to be removed far from every other thing.

How hard it is for man to ever fully realize what this means in his living - 
a life lived for God alone.
     Yet those who find it, find a relief,
          a rest, and a refuge from all the conflict of a fallen world.

Only the Spirit of God can reveal God,
     and show us the endless distance 
          between the highest thing we can offer and the realm of God.

          It is a letting go of all that is ours,
               and a giving all, to the One Who is All in All.

Friday, January 31, 2020

No More

God speaks in Job 38.11, "Here shall thy proud winds be stayed"

It is interesting that the waves are associated with pride
- uplifting and advancing with resistless force.

What a picture of the enemy - 
     unstoppable in his pride and destructive force until God decrees.

Here at the bottom of Argentina lies Cape Horn,
where the Atlantic, the Pacific and the Antartic Oceans meet.
     Here the winds blow unchecked across the thousands of miles of the Pacific Ocean.
          Here gigantic waves are formed and it has been estimated that in these seas 800 ships and over 10,000 men were lost between the sixteenth and the twentieth centuries.

What a picture of destruction is there.
And what a picture of the waves which arise against the child of God.
     The waves are unchecked until God says, "Enough."

When God marks the spot and says "here,"
     the waves cannot advance one step more.
          When He says "here" the destructive power is no more. 

How great is God,
how great is His power, and His mercy.
     It is for us to believe,
          to take hold, 
               to stand firm.

 It is for us to repeat His declaration of promise,
      to say with Him, in faith, 
          "here shall thy proud waves be stayed."

This is the calm God bestows upon His own,
     a calm which is absolute and inviolable,
          a calm beyond the power of the enemy to desecrate.

             This is the place of our Comfort, our Safety and Renewal.


Wednesday, January 29, 2020

Oh, to Stand

The little word "stand" calls my attention today...
How many times, and in how many ways, the Bible calls us to stand.

From the time of Abraham we read of God's people standing up.
     It seems, of course, to speak of something more than a mere physical standing.
          It seems to be a statement of faith, commitment, and determination.

Paul in the New Testament exhorts us to  " withstand.. and having done all to stand." (Eph. 6.13)

It is the result of a quickening within that rises in the face of challenge.

     It is a standing to commence the battle,
          a standing throughout the battle.
               and a standing at the  end of the battle.

It is a rising up from things below,
     up from the mire and clay of earth,
          from weakness and apathy,
               from the impossibilities which would hem us in,
                    from the fears, the uncertainties, and the pressures of darkness.

It is a standing in the power of the Living Spirit within,
     it is a quickening of our mortality by the Immortal One.

It is a gathering to ourselves all that we have known and experienced of God.
     It is an unshakeable determination to hold that which has been given to us.
          It is a reaching out to "Thy Kingdom come." (Mat. 6.10)

      To Stand is to possess.
          To stand with God, is to possess the  Kingdom for which we pray.


Friday, January 24, 2020

The Task

I'm stuck. There is a word we use here, and I can't find an exact translation.
The word is "Tramite." 
"Tramite" is the procedure necessary in order to attain to a result.

I was impressed today with the fact that in my facing of the challenges of life the result has not to do with the visible things themselves 
          but with the invisible barriers which hinder accomplishment.

And so my task (tramite) has to do with the One Who disposes all things in heaven and earth.
     Nothing more and nothing less.

But it is not merely today's challenges which find their solution in God,
it is all the battles, all the wearing trials, of all my life.

In every circumstance of every day of my life, throughout the years,
     God holds the key, God disposes the results.
          All my dealings are with God

In short: All life's Answers are found in God.

The first verse of an old hymn says:
     Pray always pray;
     the Holy Spirit pleads
     within thee all thy daily,
     hourly needs.

And the last verse says:
     All earthly things  
     with earth 
     shall fade away;
     pray, always pray.

All that is earthly is but for a moment,
and only as we are able to see beyond that which surrounds us 
can we understand the true value of things,
can we begin to understand the heavenly realm.

"We wrestle not against flesh and blood" says the apostle. (Eph 6.12)
     And so all through our years, 
           we find life in the measure in which we find of God.

Sunday, January 19, 2020

That Which is to Come

One thing about the word "greater" ... when it refers to God, 
     it refers to something far beyond the ability of our minds to grasp.

Even if we look at created things (which is the smallest part of God's working)
     Someone has estimated the number of stars at          1,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000. 
     At the other end of the scale there are perhaps 
  43,000,000,000,000,000,000 atoms in a grain of sand - 
God put all those atoms in a grain of sand ... 
so how many atoms are there in the universe???

Now, as the chorus says, "How great is God?"
How great distance which His condescension led Him to stoop to man?

God calls us to Himself. How great is that call?
How great is the power which works to make it possible?
How great is the Love, the Mercy, the Tenderness of God's seeking?
How unfailing the undergirding which comes with this call to our hearts?

With God nothing is impossible. (Lk. 1.37)
     If our hearts reach out then
          God's gift of faith will meet us.

As a church we have gone back from the time when the streams of Salvation, Healing, and Holy Ghost baptism met at the beginning of the twentieth century.

The Glory, the Freshness and the Power of those days are no longer amongst us.
God Himself is no longer the All in All in our midst,
as He was for those who experienced the outpouring of the Spirit of God 
those years ago.

Someone told me of those early days, "We KNEW that God would come and manifest Himself every time we were in a meeting."
Today? Where are we today?

Today we are structured and bound by our conventions.
Today we have substituted programs for vision.
Today we have taken our eyes off God and are looking for men to guide us.

We think we know when we know nothing.
Man looks for the "latest and greatest" 
     but God desires that we humble ourselves 
          that He might do His work.

Isaiah 2 speaks of that which will be in the Last Days,
     the days when man's pride will be humbled and God alone exalted,
          the days when God's Call to man will Culminate in Fulfillment.

It is a time to cease to try to understand the future through the eyes of the past.
     It is a time to seek the Lord alone.
          It is a time to go up to the mountain of the Lord,
               to the place where He will teach us of His ways,
                    where we will walk in His paths. (vs 3)