This month's teaching : Repentance

The Will of God

Is the will of God something we have naturally obtained? When I look at the will of God concerning humans, my thoughts turn to duties that God assigns as a specific task for us to fulfill. One thing that is always in the picture of the will of God, is that He receives the glory and honor in everything we do. Is it not true that when our ability is admired, we receive the glory? Where the Bible speaks about the will of God, it never mentions anything that can be accomplished with much practice or great mental ability on our part. Certainly, we all must work to be able to feed ourselves, as the Bible indicates. So, is the will of God in what we do for a living or our common practices in fulfilling obligations? What is the will of God? If the will of God is not included in our work, then the vast majority of Christians would be outside of the will of God.

In the prior writing, I spoke of the three specific forms of God’s will. His good, acceptable, and perfect will. I wrote about the requirements for finding God’s will for our life. Once our own way is surrendered to Christ, His way becomes a visible picture to follow. There are so many people who try to surrender things, but fail to surrender their own way. This writing is a preface to a deeper teaching in the following writings concerning our body, soul, and spirit.

I understand that man is made of three specific functions. The body, soul, and spirit are the triune manifest of the human being. The body is the earthen vessel which was made from the dust of the ground. The soul was the result of the breath of God when He created Adam. The spirit is the divine central heart of the being, and is the very place indwelled by the Holy Spirit.

First, I want to look at the function of the body. Our body is the temple of the Holy Spirit. Our body contains all three relative functions designed by God, enabling us to do His will. Within this body, we are entirely capable of doing the will of God. When a man becomes born-again, he is brand-new and needs to function in a completely new way. Here is where the word, obedience enters the picture. Obedience is always to one thing; it is continually to the will of God. Knowing the will of God is of utmost importance so that we can fulfill that which we have been created for. We have been created in His image and His likeness. I believe the ‘good will’ includes what the body or human being does. The body does works primarily with hands and feet, and accomplishes things great and small. The body carries the soul and spirit, and transports these functions to where they need to be. The body is needed to function in the good will of God and it is within our body that the soul and spirit can function.

The soul is where our mind, will, and emotion are contained. This is the means of decision for the function of our being. I want to use a simple form of explanation—if our mind says go, and our will says go, and our emotions say go, guess what happens? We go! Our mind decided the direction of our feet. Our will decided to follow through and step forward. The emotions told us how fast to step. This is a simple way of understanding our functions. Our soul must be in subjection to a higher power or else it will fail in every way. Our soul needs to understand the acceptable will of God in the way it adapts its behavior to the purpose it serves.

Our spirit is the antenna that receives hearing by way of inspiration, enlightenment, and revelation. If our spirit is tainted with our self-life, we can easily hear wrong through our imagination and be deceived like Eve. Our spirit is the deeper compartment of our being. This part of our life needs a deeper transformation, otherwise the Holy Spirit will not function there. It must remain in a constant state of transformation by way of daily death, and resurrection. It is in this compartment that the perfect will of God is revealed.

The spirit of man yields upwards in spiritual quest to know God and His ways. Ecclesiastes 3:21 Who knoweth the spirit of man that goeth upward, and the spirit of the beast that goeth downward to the earth? The transformed spirit of man is spiritually-minded, and the carnal man is earthly-minded. It is within the spirit of man that the Holy Spirit dwells and empowers the whole being to do the perfect will of God.

1 Corinthians 2:9 But as it is written, Eye hath not seen, nor ear heard, neither have entered into the heart of man, the things which God hath prepared for them that love him. V.10 But God hath revealed them unto us by his Spirit: for the Spirit searcheth all things, yea, the deep things of God.

The Body is for the Lord

The righteousness of God appears to be the underlying foundation upon which all things exist which are subordinate to God’s plan, and the pattern of His eternal supremacy. Our body is a pre-existent design created to function as a constituent of the Creator’s righteousness in the heavenly family extended on Earth. We as man were created to rule over His estate, through His delegations of authority and with simple obedience to what has been designed and written. God implemented His plan through the human race, placing them in the garden Eden. He gave them global dominion over all things on Earth, giving them only one ‘thou shall not’. Humans were designed as representatives, to carry a valuable presence upon their bodily image with the likeness of the supreme Creator. God’s image and likeness carried uncontaminated traces of His eternal strength and supreme power on the earth.

As children of God, we need to have an understanding of what God’s righteousness is, and come into unadulterated surrender to it. This was all forfeited and lost in a spiritual sense in the Garden of Eden. Righteousness is the foundation and forum of continuity that draws from the existence of God’s holiness and influence, bringing us back into perfect fellowship with Him. This plan of endorsement was instituted as a legal acceptance agreement which originated from the eternal and foundational oracles of God; not tainted in any way by human effort. This plan was eternal and original with God and remains in perfect condition, never having changed. God never changed His righteousness. Even His requirements are same. The only way to God’s righteousness is to remain in full, uncontaminated relationship with Him. How is this done? The requirements for righteousness stand eternal as an unending constitutional vendetta against disobedience in any form—whether on earth, or in heaven. God’s eternal plan for His kingdom power, is holiness in righteousness; the plan was perfect. His righteousness never failed, nor was it ever diminished.

Abram was the first man after the fall to be accredited as righteous before God. God’s acceptance was complete and assured based on one thing—he believed God. Genesis 15:6 And Abram believed in the Lord; and he accounted it to him for righteousness. How is it that faith is so powerful, it actually reconciles with the eternal God? It is the only acceptable God-approved way to bring us back under His divine authority. This is why it is impossible to please Him any other way. Abram did not believe in God in the way which we in our modern day hear about believing. He did not believe things about God, he believed God. He moved by faith in that which he was told to do, and that which was told to him was by faith.

There is only one source of acceptable righteousness with God in our day; it is through the Son of Righteousness. Romans 3:21 But now the righteousness of God without the law is manifested, being witnessed by the law and the prophets; V.22 Even the righteousness of God which is by faith of Jesus Christ unto all and upon all them that believe: for there is no difference. It’s all in Jesus because He paid God’s acceptable price for our sin, to restore God’s righteousness to fallen mankind. This avenue is called grace by God’s gift of kindness. This grace allows God to accept faith which does not even come from us, but has made an appeal to us as a means of redemption. Ephesians 2:8 For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God: (Emphasis added).

There are people who say they believe this truth, but only know it in their mind and their life remains filled with sin and filth. If the truth does not set us free, it is not truth. It is within our body that all of this is contained. Our body is the temple of the Holy Spirit. There are many temples which are filled with other things, where the Holy Spirit is a stranger at the door. It is our duty to welcome the Holy Spirit into our temple and give Him full access to use the vessel as He desires, without argument. 1 Corinthians 6:19 What? Know ye not that your body is the temple of the Holy Ghost which is in you, which ye have of God, and ye are not your own? V.20 For you are bought with a price: therefore glorify God in your body, and in your spirit, which are God’s. We do not belong to ourselves anymore. If we belong to ourselves, then we do not belong to God. We were purchased when Christ hung on the cross. 1 Corinthians 3:17 If any man defile the temple of God, him shall God destroy; for the temple of God is holy, which temple ye are. The Holy Spirit will only dwell in a holy place. So, what is our purpose on earth? We are the temple of the Holy Spirit—here to bring glory to God by His authority alone in Christ. Titus 3:5 Not by works of righteousness which we have done, but according to his mercy he saved us, by the washing of regeneration, and renewing of the Holy Ghost. Hallelujah!

Finding the Will of God

Today I will write about two key verses that have brought clear direction to me throughout much of my Christian experience. Romans 12:1 I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that ye present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God, which is your reasonable service. V.2 And be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God.

In my young Christian life, I used to have the constant question – ‘how can I know the will of God for my life?’. I would also hear this question among many of my fellow youth during question-and-answer periods among our group. In those years, my future looked like a blur with no clear definition. I also never heard any minister of the gospel give a clear answer to my question. It was not until I set out to seek God for a revolutionizing change in my life, that I found these life-changing verses. When I followed the direction of this verse, immediately I found God’s will for my life. I have relived this verse many times throughout the ministry that God has placed upon me, to assure me, to hold me, to recommit the vision for my life.

Life, at times, becomes very complicated and extremely difficult to endure concerning God’s will and how we relate to it. We are challenged on every side to lay down what has been placed in our heart. If the enemy can cancel our submission to the will of God, then we will walk in our own will!

How do I find God’s will for my life? The clear key is to present our body as a sacrifice before God. We die to our own ideas, hang-ups, desires, and all private reservations as we lay them completely and unreservedly before the Lord without any hesitation. This is one complete package of surrender; it is all given up here. All fear and doubt and personal initiative is brought before God with one thing in mind—we will lay it down, and leave it there. All becomes silenced and final. This we do before the Lord as a lamb to the slaughter. This entire surrender to God is not unreasonable in any way, but is simply what God desires before He can lead us further. Let’s take a moment and do this today before the Lord.

What just transpired is called holy and acceptable to God, and He calls it “reasonable service”. Now our personal conformity to the world has lost its grip on our soul. It has shed itself from us, and has no more control over us in this position. Conformity to the world has all to do with our mind, and our thinking. We used to want approval from the world; now we desire approval from God alone. When we present our body as a living sacrifice before God in a spiritual sense, we become holy and acceptable before God in a moment.

The next thing we notice is that there has been a renovation of the mind. We are transformed by the renewed mind. The mind does not bear the old things nor the despicable struggles that enticed us at one time. Old arguments linger no longer, they have left us, and we are not controlled by those thoughts anymore. They lay dead at the feet of Jesus. When things are surrendered, they lose their power in a moment. It is alone in this state of surrender that our mind is renewed in a notable way. Now the will of God for our life becomes clear before us. Now, being transformed by the renewing of our mind, we may prove the good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God.

We can now understand the will of God because we have the mind of Christ.
There are three distinctive forms of God’s will:
1. His good will.
2. His acceptable will.
3. His perfect will.
God leads us in these as He sees us in three consecutive depths of surrender. The more spiritually mature we become in Christ, the deeper our purpose within His will is revealed. The deeper the perfection that the Holy Spirit’s refining brings, the more perfect His will becomes for us to fulfill. There is clearly a good, acceptable and perfect will of God.

When your deep surrender to God becomes a genuine reality, there arises a spiritual passion that is formed within to do a specific task known as the will of God. This task is one that rests in your heart as a burden and does not go away. This task is what God will lead you into only as you live a surrendered life. This alone is how we know and do the will of God. It is never complicated, for His yoke is easy and His burden is light. Hallelujah!

1 John 2:17 And the world passeth away, and the lust thereof: but he that doeth the will of God abideth for ever.

Honoring Dignities

Jude 8 Likewise also these filthy dreamers defile the flesh, despise dominion, and speak evil of dignities.

I want to write concerning this subject, because it has become a very prevalent problem in the last 10 years. This picture of dishonor is affecting our society, homes, businesses, and churches. We read and understand that this problem will intensify in the end times. The strong self-will that people carry within lends them the arrogant tendency to discredit and disrespect dignities with any sort of dominance. Dominion was the calling that was first placed upon Adam and Eve. I do believe the balance that I could see over 30 years ago, has for the most part disappeared. This makes room for rebellion, and an evil spirit of resistance to prevail in our day. The generation we see today is so vastly different from the one I was part of for 61 years. Resistance movements and the intolerance of any type of governance, seem to be the current way of life. The Bible is clear about this rising problem at the close of the age.

What are these dignities we read about in Jude? There are many hard-working, callus-kneed people who have shed abundant tears and bloodied their hands to achieve success with their skill. This ranges from the founder of a business, to one with a governing position in the structural mechanism required for unified work. Their job-description requires proficiency that can be very difficult and intense to achieve. After years of honing their talent and meeting with success in their field, there forms within an acquired skill to fulfill the necessity to function with grace.

There are many classes and variations of common duty in the work force, and daily responsibilities in every department of life. The Christian should always seek to fulfill his duties with excellence. Some of these people have mastered their areas of profession to the degree of obtaining a notoriety in their society, community, organization, or other entity. But from the spiritual observation, there is one most important by far; it is the kingdom of God, which closely correlates to the Bride of Christ – the Church. However, the honoring of dignities is not specific only to the church. I will bring that honor to our attention towards the end of this writing.

The toil of perfecting which these dignitaries and achievers have performed in their craft is worthy of great honor and respect. They are found among the best in the land, from great fathers and mothers, to peaceful citizens. These people carry a class of importance, and passion in the way their organization functions. If they would disappear one day, things could become very difficult surrounding the responsibilities they maintained so well. These are people of honor that have always worked with an understanding of the blessing of being under authority in one form or another.

Some of these people have greater achievements, and therefore hold a higher degree of dignity. Superior achievements simply mean greater discipline, and intense tolerance in the pursuit of superior organization and productivity. These efficient accomplishers escalate their advancements and are prone to much greater risk as well. I am describing those dignitaries which form an honorable platform by their loyal duty to service in whatever capacity they are hired to fulfill. These become masters regardless of their profession, because they use the ability they find within the character of God-given governance. This governance is part of a God-given initiative to fulfill duty, regardless of what the task requires.

I certainly understand that there are those who fail in these areas of responsibility and will not become masters of duty. Laziness and a sluggish demeanor will never pursue greater responsibility. These are the ones that always tend to downplay anyone with any form of initiative. Their glass is always half empty. If we’re tempted to minimize someone’s achievements and allow jealousy to dishonor them, we should walk with them for a mile or two. Every experience and mere victory stood as an assault against them until they prevailed. When we see someone that has a stature of dignity, let’s consider the cost they endured. I know these fellows are being paid for the service and legitimacy they’ve brought to their employer.

There are those who give years of service to God, never receiving anything of a reward on earth. They receive almost the exact opposite of those in the common workplace of duty. They are despised, rejected, ridiculed, lied against, and dishonored in return for years of hardship while doing the will of God. Their mantle has thousands of teardrops, blood stains, and marks of deep rejection pierced throughout. Entwined within are sleepless nights of anguish and pain inflicted by fellow saints who never understand. Requirements of extreme decision-making are so heavy, numbing the heart to the point where direction is by faith alone. These are spiritual dignities. Let us never despise any dignities but respect them and honor them as God would have us do. When we honor them, we bring their blessing upon us which is ultimately from God.

1 Thessalonians 4:8 He therefore that despiseth, despiseth not man, but God, who hath also given unto us his Holy Spirit.

1 Peter 2:17 Honor all men. Love the brotherhood. Fear God. Honor the king. V.18 Servants, be subject to your masters with all fear; not only to the good and gentle, but also to the forward.

Pessimistic Distortions

The twelve spies that were sent out to view Canaan, The Promised Land, brought back two vastly different reports. Ten of them saw the giants of Anak, and two saw what God described as rich land filled with grapes, honey, and milk. The ten recognized that there were rich fields filled with plenty, but they considered the great enemy they saw to be more significant. They all beheld the same things, yet arrived at two different points of view. The least of them saw what God promised; the majority saw the impossibility caused by these tall men. How could the conclusion of representatives from the twelve tribes of Israel show such contrasting opinions? Was it something within, or something without? It must have been something within because they saw the same thing without. So, what is within a person that can cause his surroundings to appear dramatically different? Faith in what God said was the whole difference.

I meet with so many situations in the lives of people that seem to be clueless as to why they have become what they are. Some have a natural tendency to be controlled by a negative view of life; they seem to possess a pessimistic point of view of almost everything. These people feel a sense of guilt in embracing something positive. This problem is one that brings an adverse effect to one’s surroundings. It’s like the dead flies in the ointment of the apothecary in Ecclesiasties 10. This character does not understand why no one enjoys being in their company. They seem to have a fear of the night in the middle of the day. They like to weep with those who weep, but find it uncomfortable to rejoice with those who rejoice; they cannot be filled with joyfulness for they find the cross of joy to be too great because of the suspicion they foster. They find a fictional and repulsive security to hold onto. This is a disruptive, unhealthy characteristic of the soul-power of man. These people fear the clouds of tomorrow and allow it to mess up the sunshine of today. These effects are not characteristic of the beautiful life to be lived by the children of God.

As we dig a bit deeper into their lives, we find patterns that are not healthy. One of the chief issues they unknowingly possess is that they have the answer to most any problem, but their own they cannot fix. One obvious trait of this personality is that they counter things with a question. By constantly being in a condition of questioning, they produce an environment of suspicion. They use repugnant questions to construct a defense of gloom around themselves, loving the security of worry and embracing negativity. It empowers them in the strongholds in which they barricade themselves.
Another problem that this tendency creates is the inability to see clearly or factually because of fear-based perception and imaginations. Eve knew clearly that she was not to touch the Tree of Knowledge nor eat the fruit of it. She knew without any doubt what God had said. When Satan asks her one question, the question became hers – “Has God said?”. At that moment, the terrible tree completely changed into a pleasant fancy. Now the tree was pleasing to the eyes and good for food and desirable to make one wise. When Eve was brought into question, she discovered something that changed her: an inflamed and distorted imagination! Her imagination took an evil tree and instead made it appear pleasing, good, and wise. Now she was convinced because it made total sense. The tree never changed! Her imagination changed her perception of the evil and turned its discernment into a compelling good. The imagination will also take good and make it into evil.

What is the answer to this problem labeled in our society as anxiety? I have learned that, unmistakably, the biggest problems that create anxiety are – out of control imaginations, and the people who possess them cannot be trusted in the relaying of a story. In counseling people with this framework of distortion, nothing is accurate. This imaginary problem is so intense, that it is like an evil compulsion that poisons the whole body. It is actually devilish in every sense. This is often where evil spirits attach themselves like a monkey on someone’s back. These complex mannerisms are hard to bring to a stop. It is like the two sisters that birthed their own problem. Ezekiel 23:4 And the names of them were Aholah the elder, and Aholibah her sister; and they bare sons and daughters. Thus were their names; Samaria is Aholah, and Jerusalem Aholibah. These were sisters that fought like Samaria and Jerusalem and produced children that became their own enemies.

The overcoming power is repentance towards truth. We cannot continue to fester in captivity to something we’ve only imagined. Imaginings are not truth. God never imagines, He knows. We imagine only when we do not know. It is a stronghold-tool designed by Satan to destroy. We cast it down in a moment! These are high exalted things that are anti-Christ in nature. We refuse the right to trust in it. We cannot be under Christ’s obedience when we allow our imagination to control us. 2 Corinthians 10:5 Casting down imaginations, and every high thing that exalteth itself against the knowledge of God, and bringing into captivity every thought to the obedience of Christ. Imaginations are designed to stand tall, and control. We cast all of them down to inexistence, now is the time to do so!

The Centurions Marvel

One of the greatest things given to us in life is the tool of hearing. The hearing I refer to is not the function of the physical ear. While our natural hearing is a wonderful gift and value to the body, it can never replace that hearing which is spiritual. I have crossed paths with some of the most frustrated, lifeless Christians who don’t hold even a slight concept of what I am addressing today. I taught a small group monthly for over a year on this subject and some never heard or perceived what frustrates their life of mystification. It is clear as crystal to some, and to others as dark and mysterious as the murkiest sludge. What causes this problem? Is it demonic? Is it a curse, or simply fixed stubbornness riddled with inflexibility? I personally believe it can be all of the above.

The lives that are affected by this dilemma all seem to have strongholds of dark chains, yet they also have many concrete opinions and answers. When these people hear the true answer, it is quickly stolen so as not to taint their own vagueness. They inhabit the realms of ambiguous struggles so deep that they become a misery in whatever place they function. My heart goes out to those who are held under this dark cloud. There is a treacherous problem that these also possess—they will wound the saints of God when given opportunity. My prayer is that there would be deliverance for all who read this who are affected by this phenomenon and are caught in this hidden struggle. This kind of people I do not naturally desire to communicate with because they receive understanding different than that which has been spoken. Their receptive channels of hearing are polluted with preconceived biases, making it dangerous to talk with them.

Jesus found this problem among the Pharisees and Sadducees, as well as others in His day. The strongholds of predetermined thought took Jesus’ words completely out of context on many occasions. Finally, Jesus chose to speak in parables which they could not begin to understand, nor could they pin anything on him this way. And then He met the Centurion! This man had a servant who was sick with palsy and grievously tormented. Matthew 8:7 And Jesus saith unto him, I will come and heal him. V.8 The centurion answered and said, Lord, I am not worthy that thou shouldest come under my roof: but speak the word only, and my servant shall be healed. V.9 For I am a man under authority, having soldiers under me: and I say to this man, Go, and he goeth; and to another, Come, and he cometh; and to my servant, Do this, and he doeth it. V.10 When Jesus heard it, he marveled, and said to them that followed, Verily I say unto you, I have not found so great faith, no, not in Israel. Jesus called this composition of authority faith. What is the cure for hearing? It is faith which is not understood by many.

The problem with hearing is—we think it unimportant and even optional. I am and have been a man under authority ever since I was filled with the Holy Spirit. I learned this rather quickly. I am also a man that employs many people because my ministry has always been self-supporting. When I speak to a man in management and ask him with specific instructions to complete something, if he is under authority, it will be done just as requested and all will work like clockwork. Now my authority is validated, his authority is validated, and his subordinate’s authority is validated. This is extremely important. Here I have four authorities under authority and it is perfectly finished as authorized. If one of these men decides he knows better and bypasses orders, he is therefore not under authority. The end result is incompletion and all is in chaos. Jesus encountered a man like this who needed healing for his servant. One of this commanding officer’s ranking servants was down with an incurable sickness and in torment.

Jesus said this man had the greatest faith in all of Israel. This is exactly how faith works. The Centurion made a profound statement. What was it? “I am a man under authority”? No, but that is the structure! He said speak the word only! He understood rank and authority. Then he explains his basis for this faith. He declared that if Jesus would only speak the word, it would be so, because he had faith that Jesus was under authority. People with the problem of hearing do struggle with speak the word only. They feel they need their murky words in it as well. God, let us understand our hearing problem and bless the order in which your word abounds. Heal our hearing and place us under the authority you set before us so that your freedom can prevail within.

Sensational Enticements

There are many things presented to us with the intention of distracting us from genuine and empowering truth. Paul’s speeches were not given with enticing words of wisdom through the perception of man. When Paul spoke, there were accompanying demonstrations powerfully wrought by the Holy Spirit. Things were changed, and the power of God shook the surroundings. Hearts were pricked and lives were changed; the enemy was defeated. 1 Corinthians 2:4 And my speech and my preaching was not with enticing words of man’s wisdom, but in demonstration of the Spirit and of power. When the wisdom of God is proclaimed, there is life, action, and stirring in the hearts. People are drawn towards God because they are influenced and changed by His presence. Apostle Paul writes that our faith should not stand in the wisdom of man, but in God’s active power. Sensational words from a capable speaker can get people moving but hearts remain unchanged. Their astounding quips and quotes are often enticements that can make a person feel good for a day or two.

When God speaks, it is in a way that is often unusual to man. He speaks as though He has searched the hearts that will give ear. The wisdom of God is often spoken in a mystery filled with hidden wisdom 1 Corinthians 2:6 His word is not contemptible but original which God ordained before the world unto our glory. When man speaks his own wisdom, men say ‘wow!’. When God speaks from Heaven His express word we say, ‘woe is me!’. We are not necessarily struck down by it, but are changed by it through His expressed glory from Heaven. Paul teaches us that philosophy and vain deceit has a way of spoiling our faith in God and should be guarded against so that it does not rob our simple faith in Christ. Words of sensational enticement are designed for a quick bump in the mind, but the heart stays unchanged. Many will pay dearly for a bump of mental stamina, but have little to show for it because the power therein is but mere human echo.

When the Holy Spirit speaks, it is with demonstration and not replication. It is never enticing but is a wooing of hope in times of necessity and refuge to the hungry. When God speaks, it is not information but demonstration. It is an answer by way of propagation and enactment filled with strength that does not come from mere nature. When the Holy Spirit speaks, it is more impartation than words. It propagates a spiritual outcome in the life and heart of a man. When God speaks, it brings man’s questions to silence. When man speaks, it causes more questions. Man’s enticing words of self-wisdom will point you to the place of roving treasure. When God speaks, he fills your earthen vessel with wonderful treasure.

The Lord helps us to avoid being enticed by the impressiveness of man and to rather be drawn to the glory that is demonstrated from Heaven. He helps us to sit at the well of His word and not at the swell of man’s concepts. The power that God works within us is capable of things far superior to that which our own hands can form. He can change our surroundings and bring us His favor and blessing for His glory.  Let us never forget nor neglect the Lord in our conquest to fulfill our daily duties upon the Earth.

Lord, might we always rely on strength that is not visible but that which comes from faith in Christ and the Holy Spirit so that we are not tempted to draw honor to ourselves. Success is not ours but yours and we are in you through death and resurrection by the Holy Spirit.  Deuteronomy 8:18 But thou shalt remember the Lord thy God: for it is he that giveth thee power to get wealth. You are our wealth and control the cattle on a thousand hills.

When a task is before us it is in the provision of God that we trust not the ways of man. There is a verse that I hold near to me always. Proverbs 16:3 Commit thy works unto the Lord and thy thoughts shall be established. This is how He directs my writings and messages and all decisions I make going forth. Hallelujah!

Triumphant Over Death

Few seem to understand the value and virtue of the deeper life, though some may vaguely question why there are no deeper life-changing effects pouring out of their own lives. Along the path of professed Christianity there needs to be realistic questioning about one’s state of profession. One seemingly seldom visited question is—am I persecuted for God’s righteousness within me? If persecution is something we know little about, then righteousness is also perhaps something found absent within. This should not be puzzling. This absence is seldom understood as the true spiritual poverty that it is. I am at times astounded at how well-meaning Christians are blinded by their good intentions as they try to affect things they have no spiritual insight into. Peter was sure that the cross was the wrong feat for Jesus. He thought it completely destructive to the kingdom of God. What was to be the beginning of God’s kingdom, he understood as the end of it. While God was setting in place the deepest processes and foundations indestructible on earth, Peter and the disciples went fishing. It was all over according to their perception; they were entirely wrong. Great hope and the full promise of power were about to be demonstrated as death was finally defeated since its introduction in Eden.

Triumphant resurrection is only for those who have no other options. The remaking of a tendered soul is not small defeat-like bumps in the road or a glitch in a dream. There are few who understand—by experience—what it’s like to be left with no answers when devastation takes full control of one’s spiritual future. The only ones who need such resurrection power are the ones who cannot come forth from spiritual despair. God can only allow this experience to overshadow the ones who have given their life to this degree and experience this depth of divine surrender. This alone is how God brings us to the mirror of accurate truth rather than mere perception of who we think we are. He brings us face to face with ourselves, then transforms the image we once beheld and clung to and wished others to perceive. Sometimes this is necessary to change someone else’s perception of who I really am. God wants our face to be open and honest about who we really are. He removes pretense far from us to change the glory we thought was present.Corinthians 3:18 But we all with an honest face behold, as in a mirror the glory of the Lord; Our same image is changed from one glory to another glory, by the power of the Holy Spirit.

In the middle of this transformation, all understanding is taken away from us. This is well exemplified in the alteration of a caterpillar, cocoon, and butterfly. In the middle of this precious process, God supplies a major component of grace in the wilderness that sustains us another day. It is not earth-shaking nor conspicuous strength. He gives us just enough to embrace in solitude our sorrow, or we might faint and literally die from sadness and despair. These transforming wildernesses are not several months of difficulty. They are valleys of shadows of every form of death, lasting until God sees Himself in us the way He desires to.

God’s purpose of grace here is to bring us into a place of patience where only His exceptional transforming power can recreate His desire within us. Out of this humbling framework of spiritual persistence comes forth a weakened soul, so strong that gates and walls are rendered powerless against it. Gated strategies and deceptions of hell will not prevail nor hold any power over such resurrection. It is within these saints that God works marvels lasting through eternity to prove His faithfulness. It is in these places that God will use your presence to change the atmosphere and surroundings with His presence. The revelation of deeper truth confounds the natural ideas in the mind of the carnal Christian. This intensified work of deeper sanctification is not for the called ones—only for the chosen ones. To the ones who give little thought to themselves. These are the ones who are led by the Holy Spirit like Jesus was led into the wilderness and back out of it. They have learned to follow as sons. Becoming triumphant over death is surviving the shadows of death. These are they who have washed their robes in the blood of Jesus and are His power on earth.

Romans 6:3 Know ye not, that so many of us as were baptized into Jesus Christ were baptized into his death?
V.5 For if we have been planted together in the likeness of his death, we shall be also in the likeness of his resurrection:

Strength in Weakness

When a man exercises his assertive strength, he will discover how incapable he really is spiritually. Flesh will always produce flesh, as will a spiritual man produce that which is spiritual. Before God can greatly use those He has anointed, He must break all within that is not anointed. The only way the anointing of God can flourish with strength, is for the human vessel to surrender in complete willingness to work under the authority of God. This will weaken the strength of the naturally empowered icon of self and easy ability. God must break our strength till we operate in divine strength. When we exercise in weakness, we do not sit idle either. Exercising our purpose in weakness is like seeing roadblocks everywhere around us. The only way forward is simple day to day faith, moving towards that which divinely inspires our heart. Spiritual weakness allows us to function in broken inspiration and reverence to our maker. The spiritual transformation of a child of God is a divine process that cannot be ignored, nor should it ever be misunderstood. It is a very difficult and lonely place where understanding is seldom realized.

Many admire the huge success of building a large formation when all is wood, hay, and stubble. The display is admired, well-regarded, and heavily supported because of fascination with the aspirations of a dreamer’s dream. It is so often true that the eagerness of one’s desire to impress the emperor within, ignites desires of competitive achievement under the title of spiritual burdens. What God is seeking within a man is simple faithfulness. This is the only way that God can do great things with small things. When we exercise our weakness through the strength of faith, we will see the strength of God. God is not visible in our strength, only in our weakness.

2 Corinthians 12:10 Therefore I take pleasure in infirmities, in reproaches, in necessities, in persecutions, in distresses for Christ’s sake: for when I am weak, then am I strong. What causes the man of God to operate in the strength of God? Once we find pleasure in specific related infirmities, we have been transformed. When reproaches for righteousness’ sake become the surrounding echoes of cheer in the valley of shadows, you know that you are in rich pastures of the heavenly kind. When necessities howl a wondering cry without echoes, you know a form of weakness so strong that it surpasses the riches in the land. The spiritual persecutions only come to the Godly who live in Christ. But many are persecuted because of their wrong doing and it is rightly deserved and must never be understood as the same.

These spiritual distresses are for Christ’s sake, not for our sake. They are designed to advance God’s kingdom into territories so deep, that none could ever endure except the strengthless (yet empowered) heaven-bound soul! These are places that are God-designed for His specific purposes. These are extremes of power and display His truth to the heavenly accompaniment of witnesses! These are Daniels in a den of close-mouthed lions. These are Elijahs on the run, desperate to only hear a voice of direction, with Baal’s prophets’ blood on his mantle and Jezebel in his ear. These are Pauls in a spiritual shipwreck on the sea of captivity heading toward the court of his enemies. These are Johns thrown on the island of Patmos, into the wild teeth of raging enemies where God whispers the depth of His Revelation, so profound that most fail comprehension.

God is available as our strength, but only after we reach our limitation of ability. If our limitations are not truthfully recognized, then God’s strength is not needed to do our task. True dependence upon the Holy Spirit is only known within the private confinement of one’s honest heart. This reliance is revered and held in faith so deeply that its surroundings feel like a temperamental place of awful uncertainty. Herein lies the power of spiritual weakness; it is the eye of the hurricane. The dunamis power is beyond the immediate visible circle of torrent winds. The eye produces no power, but without the eye there is no power, nor wind, nor strength.

A heart that boasts its dependence does not walk in weakness but in superficial hollowness. Truly recognized limitations of personal strength will always bring humiliation to the soul. If our own powerful ways and ideas do not experience this sobering humiliation, then apparent surrender to the cross is not genuine. Where there is no cross there is no Jesus, where there is no Jesus there is no Holy Spirit, where there is no Holy Spirit, there is no divine power to supervene all the strength of man and God’s work is completely limited within that man.

Tried and Transformed

Was the test for me or for God? Did I fail or was there really a divine purpose? How do I know or understand what God is really seeking within me? Was the entire mess I went through of the enemy? Am I hurting from my own mistakes? All of these questions have answers. In the quietness of our heart, there seems an evident hint that has overtures of deep spiritual significance. The answers are simple yet faint to the hearer. The answer becomes clearer and clearer once we emerge from the shadowing veil.

Inside this secret song of inspiration, you will begin to uncover the richness of a lasting transformation which has sprung a new beginning of redemptive power only God can work. This is a deeply surrendered access point, wherein you have given the Holy Spirit the liberty to search all things, yea the deep things of God within you. Such a deep surrender to the will of God gives Him ownership and the authority to transform His sacrifice. He will discover and bring to your attention that which is an isolated place, still untouched by the master’s surgical hand. Psalm 139:23 Search me, O God, and know my heart: try me, and know my thoughts: V.24 and see if there be any wicked way in me, and lead me in the way everlasting. The search turns into a test that lingers around one’s sensitive, yet toughened places. Towards the conclusion of the trial, He tenderly whelms one’s heart with deep spiritual gentleness, so lovingly that the soul weeps its way to surrender. He is transformed!

These are all thoughts that surface as we emerge out of the furnace of testings. One of the primary divine achievements that God wishes us to understand is the results of what just happened. The testings and trials I am referencing are not momentary tests of shallow experiences. These are grave valleys of sorrow and deep humiliation of soul that encompass the ways of the elect of God; those with depth of aspiration and anointing that God refines into unlimited depths of His desire. These are not reckless sinners and wanderers in soul-boasting appeals of personal ineptitude. These are the ones that hold tirelessly onto the lifeline of God’s mercy. These saints treasure the grandeur of God’s presence in holiness, but are often trounced with ultimate feelings of anguish. These are the ones who seek transformation in secret closets of despair. The ones who deeply seek immortality by dwelling in the light of God. They are a book laid open that hold nothing in the dark. These closet saints weep for a redemptive solution against their own will and wrong apprehensions.

These are they who hang onto eternal life! They know of the walk through valleys of deep spiritual refinement while being laden with feelings of severe bewilderment and loneliness. These are the withdrawal symptoms that are being purged out of one’s self-filled with selfish ambitions, so now to walk in the transformed image of Christ. This depth of Godliness does not come from mere obedience, as some would like to self-induce through stubbornness of mind. Jesus did not become obedient through intelligence; He became obedient through things He suffered and endured. The sanctified believers become partakers of Christ’s sufferings as well. We seldom realize this in the middle of suffering, because it appears too evil. 1 Peter 4:12 Beloved, think it not strange concerning the fiery trial which is to try you, as though some strange thing happened unto you: V.13 But rejoice, inasmuch as ye are partakers of Christ’s sufferings; that, when his glory shall be revealed, ye may be glad also with exceeding joy.

Now let’s look at the picture of the failed test. Some things are designed to be destructive against the purpose that God has placed upon us. If God is our refuge, then He will deny us the ability to run from His sovereign love and become encased in bitter harshness. If we caused the error and refuse to acknowledge our iniquity, we will prosper further into callused animosity and find cover in hardness of heart. The sorrow-laden soul of such a condition will never find deeper revelation in Christ but remain shallow, though super-spiritual in appearance. This soul is not noticed as genuine and cannot be held in God’s trust as faithful to His will. This soul demonstrates itself with strength but is laid bare in the small matters it stumbles over. This pitiful undone slave lurches with the pretense of being super-spiritual, but boils in his frustration with explosive quietness. Jeremiah 6:30 Reprobate silver shall men call them, because the Lord hath rejected them. This silver has kept its impurity and would not refine even in the fire.

We must allow God to test us where He desires us to go. We cannot be the commander to His will. He will not harm us nor ever leave us. He will transform us into His image just as we have asked Him to do. He leads us by our own unseen hand that we didn’t know we had. It is the hand of difficult circumstances. Our hand is a very vulnerable and tender place. Here He gets all our attentive focus. Hallelujah!