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Thursday, September 16, 2021

Another World


Years ago I heard a woman telling of experience when she suffered a stroke ...
    She realized somehow that her mind was disconnected from her body -
        nothing made sense, words had no meaning and all was reduced to a senseless gibberish.
She was unable to lay hold on the world which surrounded her.
    She found the terror of a disconnect between herself and the world she had known.
    
Disconnect

As I look around the world today this seems to be a good description for what is happening.
    The logic of the functioning world of yesterday is no more.
        Words are mere sounds in the air.
In place of connection we have a disconnect with all that makes sense.

Isaiah says (45.18)
    "God himself ... formed the earth ... He created it not in vain,
        He formed it to be inhabited."
       
It is a terrible thing when man seeks to create his own world.
    It is a terrible thing when God comes to judge.
        It is a terrible thing when all that makes sense is taken away.
            It is a terrible thing to lose everything which makes for a habitable world.
                It is a terrible thing when building has given place to destruction.

The things swallowed by the past years are now seen as a desirable
    replacement for that which has been built by the generations since.
The "Blood, sweat and tears" offered by Garibaldi to his followers in their fight,
    and offered again by Churchill in the hour of resistance, are no more.
And we are offered in their stead imaginary things.
    We are offered things which have no foundation because they are mirages.

A world falling apart is a world destroyed.
    God, and man's, enemy sees his purpose of destruction being fulfilled.
This generation has built until the underlying clay has given way.
        Our lusts have led us to a place where there is no future.

But,there is another Truth,
    and over against this picture, there sounds forth a Word -
        Eternal, Immutable.
            There is yet, in the midst of chaos, One Who says, "I will build..."
    
Oh, if we could only catch a glimpse of that infinite promise.

If we could only see a realm Beyond.
    Beyond all that belongs to time,
        and beyond the frustration of trying to build with perishing things.
       
        Would we could know in reality what it is to be free from all entanglements.
            Would that we could know the Eternal Purpose,
                and the Eternal Power to see it accomplished.
                    Would we could leave all else behind,
                        and find ourselves in finding God.
 

Saturday, September 4, 2021

Questions

 

Let me start with a story.
    After the second world war as the world returned to normality,
        China was experiencing the tremors of change:
            the followers of communism were on the march.
 
Christian missions had built their compounds
    and divided up the country into geographical areas for each mission group.
The Chinese church was under direction and control of foreign missions
    who had never reached the level of faith to admit Chinese leadership,
        in spite of men like pastor Hsi, John Sung, Watchman Nee and others.

But as the missions structure fell apart under the tsunami of change,
    the churches founded by the spiritually quickened Chinese believers endured.
    
As the communist forces overran the country  and the old order disappeared
    a question inserted itself "Can we pray against this catastrophe -
        or is this disaster God judging?"

Now let us jump forward seventy years to our day.
    Again the world around us is shaking
    and we do well to ask ourselves the question:
        Have we in our lives, in the place and activity of our daily existence,
        put our hope in a man-built Christianity?
Can we pray against the dissolution of things -
    or is it God working to shake us loose from the false hopes on which we have relied?
        Is it really God doing the shaking?

Have we put our hope in men - and illusionary promises?
    Have we projected our hopes onto ephemeral things?
        Have we grasped the empty words and distorted principles proffered us?
       
Are different political parties and their projects,
    the old and the new, only two faces of the same coin?
Are there any men of vision and conviction among the leaders of the world?
        Is it that we are led by those who brook no opposition, or by the "set will of the weak" who see no alternatives?

Is there not with the destruction of the past also a destruction of the future?
    Again, is it God doing the shaking?

What of us as Christians?
    Have we also set our eyes on things without substance?
Where is God in all this?
    Is He still on His throne even as we feel the earth shaking?
Does He still dispose the way of the nations on the earth?
    Can God destroy the lifestyle of a nation in order to separate "the precious from the vile"?

Can we, at this time, lift our eyes to a realm above it all,
    where God dwells, and rules unchanging?
        Can we really see, can we really hear, the One Who will guide into all truth?
       
Are we still holding on to an illusion that it is all going to work out?

    Can we hope that life will go back to what it was before?
        Can we begin to conceive how severe the judgement of God can be?

Let us ask ourselves:
what will be left to us when nothing of man's earthly structure withstands the storm?
What will be ours when the chaff is blown away,
and nothing remains except that which is of God?

It is time to find and live the truth of God  
- as we see every man made thing collapse around us.
                   
                Brethren, now is the time to dig through all the earthly,
                until beneath we reach the unchanging Rock.


Friday, August 20, 2021

It is Too Late to Turn Back the Clock

  It is Too Late to Turn Back the Clock
 
 God created the world with a purpose,
 and He gave each one of us life for a purpose.
 
 Like Samson our generation, our church,
 has fallen asleep,
 the strength has been shorn,
 and the enemy is upon us.
 
 This is not a "maybe" thing.
 It is Inevitable.
 It is Inexorable.
 
 It is too late to correct.
 Our fate is sealed.
 
 There is no going back to yesterday.
 The time of sowing has given place to the time of reaping.
 "The summer is past"...

"Collapse" defines a time when Nothing is left as it was.
 All that has been built, and cared for through generations,
 is being swept away by the wave of new radical change.
 
 We are not at the End of a process,
 we are at the Beginning of destruction of all that society held dear.
 
 Augustine wrote his book "The City of God" when the Roman empire was collapsing.
 Rome was to disappear under the tides of time,
 but the city (kingdom) of God would remain unchanged.
      So today,
      so with our earthly kingdoms.
 
 It is too late for the "macro world" around us.
 Our prayer can only avail for the "Micro world" -
 our own lives, our families lives, the lives of those we love.
 
 The light shines brighter in the darkness,
 and it for us to Arise, Shine ...for the Light and the Glory of God are promised for this hour.
 
 God will always care for His own.
 He is the One Who led His people out of Egypt...By Night when the light was no more.
 He is the One Who prepared a place for the woman, the church, to flee in Rev.12.6
 "A place prepared of God"
 He is the God of preparation and His own are never at the mercy of what surrounds them.

NOW is the time to, "Fight the good fight of faith, lay hold ...." 1Tim 6.19

Would that I could tell it as I see it,
that we might step out of ALL that surrounds us and find OUR Place in God. 

Friday, April 30, 2021

The Way Forward

 We are forever looking for "spiritual secrets,"
and searching in vain.

God's way is too Simple to be attractive ...
    too Hard to appeal to human nature, ...
        too Exclusive of man's collaboration.

Isaiah begins his prophesy speaking of "the Lord alone."
    This "aloneness" of God is the beginning and the ending of all.
    
It was God alone in creation.
    It was God alone in the lives of the patriarchs.
        It was God alone in the prophets, and apostles.
With the passing years the secret has been lost
    - God is no longer central in our midst,
        and we are left with chaos and confusion.

God not only desires to be the Source and Center of all,
    
but He will have it no other way.

What God says is Absolute, but we have changed it - we have 'touched the ark.'
    
"Except the Lord" (Ps. 127.1) is a phrase which can be written over everything .
    That which is not done by God is merely a passing emptiness.

Until the church recognizes "God alone" she has no future.
    Until the individual sees "God alone" all is vain.

We must seek "God alone" because all is from Him, and in Him, and to Him.
    Here is all sufficiency for today and all our tomorrows.

"Ye shall seek Me, and find Me" (Jer. 29.13)
    It is not difficult to understand the words,
        but it is very difficult to put them into practice.
        
            Do we find intensity in our seeking God alone?
            Do we lean hard on the Holy Spirit's help?
            If we do then we will find in Him the object of our seeking.

Wednesday, April 21, 2021

Hope as Night Falls

What hope is there for us?

    There is every hope if we find God - and there is no hope if we miss Him.

It's serious: The laws of God are eternally fixed - forever unchangeable.

It is a sad thing to see the values of the world invading the church.
It is a sad thing when the immutable is thought to be changeable.
It is a sad thing when the Word of God is interpreted by man in the light of earthly things.

It is a sad thing when the blind are leading the blind,
    when they have never ever really "seen" with their hearts,
        and when spiritual discernment has never crossed the horizons of those who point the way

It is a sad thing when "Ministry" has nothing to do with God working.
    When meetings are like pre-schoolers putting on a show.
        When "prophets" are like children crying in the night.
            When "vision" is a sharing of deliriums.
                When everything is trite and sterile prattling.
It is sad when men set up an organization and call it a "ministry"
and then seek to promote it through offering participation to donors.

How does God feel about all this?

There will be a time when earth and heaven will flee before the face of He Who sits upon the throne. (Rev. 20.11) and the verse continues, saying, "and there was no place found for them."
    Before that great day comes there will be a Day in which the Lord comes in shaking.
   there will no place for the structure of today. 

It will be a day of unimaginable destruction for a complacent world.

It will be a day of utter destruction for a church corrupted before the eyes of Almighty God.

When Moses asked to see the Glory of the Lord (Ex.33.19) God told him,
    "I will make all my goodness pass before thee."

This is the essence of Who God is.

What is man, what am I, what are we,
    before that measureless intensity of the purity of that Infinite Good?
    How could Moses, or any man, look on God and his human flesh resist the sight?

Earth and heaven will flee before Him, and every man generated thing will perish.
    Before that Presence man's plans and projects will wither,
        man's paltry interpretations will be no more,
            man's making of sermon's, music, songs, and solos will fade away.

The only response possible will be that of Isaiah, "Woe is me
    ... mine eyes have seen the KING...
        ... the Lord of Hosts."

Before the Infinite all the finite must disappear,
    and the soul find itself naked before Him,
        and prostrate at His Presence.

This, and this only, is the place where any true relationship with God begins,
   and only here faith has a ground to stand upon.
    It must be God or Nothing.
    It must be God ALL-FILLING,
    or UTTER EMPTINESS - there is no other possibility.

As darkness advances over our earth, over our generation,
    may our longing lead us to lay aside stupidities
        and to seek and to find the KING.

Tuesday, March 16, 2021

What Does God Say?

What is the essence of the gospel message?
    Where is the Center?
        Where is the meaning?

Today, as in the days of Jesus, there is so much clutter,
    so much noise of the machinery of man's self-generated beliefs,
        and the perpetuation of man's projects.
            Yet we find a simple unveiling in the gospels.

We find it very clearly in the story of the woman at the well in John 4.
    A woman without qualification of race,
        without clarity of understanding.

Hers was a life destroyed, but a life that having tried other fountains,
    and knowing the falseness of their promise,
        turned with a sure spiritual instinct to the Truth.

How simply she came.
    How direct were her words.
        How sure was her direction.
            How quickly she perceived.
                How quickly she believed.
                    How quickly she received.

Nicodemos, with all his study, questioned "how" God could do His work.
    She only asked how to come to God,
        and sought God's coming to her.

Her question rings true for us today,   
    "How are we to worship -to come and prostrate ourselves before God?"
        "What is the essence beyond all the external?"
            "How can I Come?"

Her statement "Messiah will tell us all things,"
expresses a total conviction of God's ableness.
    
    The question is:
    "How can I hear?'"
No more is needed than this -
    to find, beyond place or form, an encounter in spirit,
        to hear the One Whose words are Life for all our being.

Here she found the Answer to her questions.
Here she found the Life she sought.
Here she knew the  release of the ever sufficient Fountain.



Tuesday, February 16, 2021

Reposting: What is a Prophet



What is a Prophet?

The prophet is one who has faced the unchangeable realities of the spiritual world and who has lost his earthly values.
He sees himself, like John, as a voice in a desert world.
He is one who has caught a heavenly vision 
which renders everything of earth opaque.

His vision of God makes him acutely aware of that which is not of God -
and so he hurts and burns for the state of an apostate church which presents itself as needing nothing.
As he sees man seeking a glory which is God's alone - he burns.
As he sees man hewing a way where God's demands have been removed - he burns.
He sees a church built on the principles of secular business, numbers and influence - and he burns. 

A prophet is not self-appointed, or appointed by man.
A prophet is not self-anointed to the task - rather he is called from on High.
The prophet is not clueless regarding the true state of things around him.  -
rather he sees them from Another Perspective. 
The true prophet knows nothing of a way of easy attainment.
His ministry has been found at the cost of a total surrender of every area of his life to the Almighty.

A prophet will not lower the standard of a Holy God,
nor will he make the Way easier.

He has no need of an "echo chamber" of praise from his fellows.
He dangles no fairy-tale promises before his hearers.
He does not confuse a man made way of unending gifts and blessings,
with the high demands of the way of God's dealings.

He does not fish for "support" for his person or his ministry.
His "gift" is not for sale.
He has no need of "followers" nor of "partners."
He seeks no praise of man, nor any recognition of earth.

He has felt the Wonder, and the Beauty, and the Burning, of Reality.
He has seen Realms beyond the earthly, 
and things of earth now hold no value to him.
He walks through this world as through a foreign country -
as one who can never be satisfied with that which surrounds him.

As Moses said ... would God that all the LORD'S people were prophets, and that the LORD would put his spirit upon them! (Num. 11.29)

As children of Light we can all share a degree of prophetic vision.

"Ask, and ye shall receive, that your joy may be full." (Jn. 16.24)