Tuesday, December 26, 2017

Our Time...Our Day

"Behold I make all things new." Rev. 21:5

Here we stand, at the end of Time and at the beginning of Time.

Christmas and the New Year speak of an ending and a stage of time is dying and another is coming to birth.

We try not to gaze too intently at the past and its failures,

and we try to believe in a better future.

There is a past and a future...

but there are also two spheres - an exterior and an interior.

We must see beyond the realm of our experiences and our mental convictions.

My father was told by several people that he would live to see the day of God´s great outpouring of revival on the earth.
I think they were right but not in the way that they understood.

What my father lived to see was not a new dawn of revival but rather the beginning of the night which precedes the day.

God´s work of creation was accomplished in six days, but each day commenced with a night.
¨The evening and the morning were¨ says Genesis.
Throughout the Bible it is always so...the day starts with darkness, and after the darkness comes the light.

We want the light without the darkness...the birth without the gestation process...the joy without the pain - but God has His own ways and they are immutable.

All our insistence...against all the evidence...that we are in a world-wide revival does not change the sad reality.

The night is upon us, the nations are descending into thicker darkness.
¨Gross darkness¨surrounds us and yet the promise is for the Light of God´s glory to His own. Is 60:1,2

Our need this year is interior, a deliverance from our past understanding...a vision and an understanding of what God sets before us.

It is not so much a leaving of the past as it is a finding of the newness.

Let us not seek ¨things¨ but God Himself...¨and live¨. Amos 5:4

Only God Himself can bring it to pass.

¨Oh...turn...Thyself us...again.¨ Ps. 60:1

Monday, December 18, 2017

Christmas...Nobody Knows

Nobody knows the day of Jesus birth...some celebrate... some stumble.

However, as someone expressed, it was the day chosen by the church at large (when the church was limited to those northern realms)... in those days when man lived in “a world lit only by fire.”  
And it coincides with:
    the time of the shortest days of the year,
         with the season of least heat from the sun,
               with the time of dead flowers, fallen leaves and empty fields.

Thus He came to mankind,
   when all hope of renewal seemed fled,
       when it seemed there would be no more light or heat for man,
           when life was at its lowest ebb,
and brought the promise of a another and greater Life, another Creation.

Somehow, in our human world today we find ourselves mirroring this image...our so called civilization totters…
That dark night, and that cyclone of destruction, which men of God of a bygone generation feared would descend upon us has now come.

   The “gross darkness” is now present.
        The foundations are destroyed.
              The anchor line has parted and we are adrift.

There is no hope outside of God, and yet our generation is busy bolting the doors against His reign.

We recognise the immutability of the laws of gravity and yet refuse to accept the unchangeable laws of what is right and what is wrong before God.

We worry about the laws of nature and the state of nature, and yet we ignore the laws of God which determine our destiny.

My father used to ask, “When are we going to get serious about getting serious?”
The things which have to do with life in the Kingdom of God are not theory and are not optional.
They do not lie on the surface of life.
It is still our lack of passion that condemns us to spiritual poverty.

Today, as we celebrate Christmas, while the world hangs by a thread, God presents to us One Who came as the Dayspring...the dawning Light in the midst of darkness, Life in the midst of death.

“Choose Life.”  (Deu. 30:19)..they were Moses’ words to Israel...and they are the words God would speak to us today.

Sunday, December 10, 2017

"Thy Kingdom come...Deliver us"

“Thy Kingdom come…..Deliver us”

I find myself coming back to this prayer again, and again, and again.

The first petition of the Lord’s prayer is for a new world, God’s Kingdom... and the last petition is the cry for us to enter that new world.

Ever since the Fall,
   ever since Sin entered the world,
        ever since Destruction and Despair were unleashed,
This has been the cry of the world, the universe.
This is the cry of the ages and the groaning of creation...."Deliver us."

Rom. 8.19 creation waits...waits for the Sons of God to come into their own.

We all need God’s deliverance and without it we cannot advance.
Without God we can neither understand the measure of what has been lost, nor the measure of that which awaits.
It is a spiritual process, and we are too much of this world - too much affected by its thinking...its attractions...its fears.
And true freedom is unknown among us.

When we get free from outward entanglements we too often find ourselves entangled on the inside -
   unable to free ourselves from the cares, worries and frustrations of        mankind…
       unable to free ourselves  from our self-centered awareness of all that life entails.
Deliverance is an entering into a new realm, a place where one ceases to be conscious of limits.

As we see the impossibilities of self-deliverance, may God give us also to see the way of escape…
from the destruction of sin...
of sickness...
of darkness...
and of oneself.

May we see this great all-involving cry “deliver us,” as the only pathway to finding the freedom...
Here is the length, breadth and height of the Kingdom of  God.

May we cry that cry, and reach for that transforming deliverance.

May we see the limits of imprisonment taken away, and the dawning of a new day where the horizons of the Kingdom stretch far and far away.

Tuesday, December 5, 2017

Kingdom Power

Similar to the first commandment, which includes in its essence all the other commandments, the phrase “Thy Kingdom come” encloses all the rest of the Lord’s  prayer.

Years ago a man in Africa, a man of brilliant mind and outstanding achievements,  was converted.
As he met the reality of God, he expressed that dawn of awareness in the words, ”So, there really is a Kingdom.”
The rest of his life was lived in that reality until he was martyred for his faith by Idi Amin.

We each live in a kingdom… a kingdom which surrounds us.
We live, and play out our lives, either surrounded by the Kingdom of God, or the kingdom which belongs to this world and the enemy.

Someone once wrote a book about Alaska titled “Coming into the Country.”
In his book the author sought to explain a different land, a different climate, and a different class of people who lived there.
We as Christians are called to come into a country, a land, a Kingdom different from all that exists in this world around us.

God’s Kingdom shines brighter against the backdrop of a world whose kingdom is degenerate and corrupted in all of its parts.
    This world’s kingdom is a place where right is called wrong, and wrong is  called right.
          It is a place where political correctness rules and does not permit us to form our own judgements, or follow our own consciences.

Our goal as Christians should be to live at all times in the Kingdom of God.
Our cry should be:    
Let not earth rule in my life
         Release me from earth’s bondage…
               Show me the dimensions of God’s Kingdom...
                      Let me find the place of freedom, of faith, of Life...
                           Let me live in God’s Kingdom...
                                 Deliver me from earth’s smallness, and show me the  “Land of far horizons” where the King is seen in His beauty.