The next session on being a spiritual sacrifice which I listened to on my damp trot around the golf course took all my thinking a step further. Being in the wind and rain really seems to concentrate the mind. It’s the teaching that you have to give up all that’s you if you want to find out what is God’s will. No I don’t mean chucking in the day job. It’s a surrender, allowing him to correct our course, even as far as putting your shopping trolley back in the right place and waiting patiently in traffic!
It’s a me being prepared to give up writing -though I have said to him that while he gets me sorted I’ll go on other wise I’ll go spare with boredom! being open to what ever he has for me. I’ve been so aware since coming into our new fellowship that I’m just gagging to do more than the children’s ministry but not necessarily being in charge. I’ve changed over the past few years to being quite happy to being told what to do (yikes).
Of course, there’s fourteen years of frustration in me as well after the living in the spiritual desert of Austria!
I lay it all aside and however he spells this out to me, whenever he considers I’m usable, I’m at peace for that time
This simply means getting your nose down in the Bible and reading it, assimilating what it says and mediating on it. Some things have puzzled me so much that I’ve let them go around in my head until ‘I got it’ to quote Joyce Meyer! The Holy Spirit helps us, and Andrew Wommack also says praying in tongues while you do it helps a lot – I’ve tried but find it difficult to concentrate , no doubt needs practise.
Ok, so then how about God’s will in our lives? Well with these two steps in motion we can begin to test God’s perfect will. I’m not going to repeat all the examples in the teaching, you must listen to it yourself. Suffice to say that the outcome is what is God’s will becomes yours. In our own lives, it was this overwhelming desire to come and live in Austria, for me to work at the Fortune Centre where I’ve been most of my life terrified by disabled people. This also means that this fear that folks have that they will be sent to the stereotypical mud hut in Africa because it’s what they will hate the most is null and void, God’ s love and will for their lives becomes their’s too and as in my own life.
Yet it is so easy to get the idea of God’s will and go and blow it as Moses did, when he killed the Israelite and had to spend time in the desert repenting and learning from it. We put our own timing on things in our haste to get going. The way our house sold two weeks after we found this place is not man’s timing, its Gods, and I feel confident that we didn’t blunder. I’ve been dogged with a sense of being on the wrong path so much but as I’ve listened, I’ve seen again his hand not mine in all this = phew!
Not everyone will be called to be Ministers or preachers, there are other ways. In some ways it might even be totally irrelevant as to what you do, as in work wise and living if you are maybe witnessing to a neighbour or helping someone. And even then, it’s not our actions he’s looking for but US.
Lastly, and what was most soothing to me, again with the example of Moses, is that its never too late to make a course correction if we swerve off the path, King David was God’s second choice after Saul and look what he did. God will honour our honesty seeking and following a path, but he cant do anything unless we actually move and do something, then he can show us the co-ordinates to go on.
This is a repeat of an earlier blog series as I’ve just increased where the Blog appears.
Living Sacrifice – what a mouthful and what a daunting expression this is, especially to someone not really knowing the Bible. There is the picture of something being slain on an altar which is horrible and as Andrew Wommack says, the trouble with a living sacrifice it keeps on getting off the altar.
This expression is found in Romans 12, 1 -2 and a lot of preachers make a lot of this, I quote below from the NIV;
‘1. Therefore, I urge you brothers, in view of God’s mercy , to offer your bodies as living sacrifices, holy and pleasing to God – this is your spiritual act of worship. 2. Do not confirm any longer to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is –his good, pleasing and perfect will’
The series then unpicked this statement, and to be a LS, is basically come to the end of your self. And I have so done this! God’s allowed me to follow my own desires in my writing, my degree work, although he showed me his purpose in working at the Fortune centre. Here I’ve learnt patience, about my arrogance, my low self esteem, and the commensurate high sense of self importance, I’ve learnt how to clean bogs and be the invisible member of a team (well nearly). I have this sense that there is nothing left but God, and I’ve made him my last option as I’ve slowly built a spiritual wall around myself, which I can see neither over or round. I would counter those who would say that God has broken me – for I am not broken, I am his beloved and he has shown me these things in a way through my spirit so that I’ve come to recognise them and pray against them and learn, even though at times I’ve let them run while still being aware of them. He’s let me discern and I feel has said that he made me, some of these things are damage and some things – like my love of control are not necessarily bad if used in the right way. I am at the end of myself, I lay myself on that altar and say I’m yours. Do with me as you will, no holds barred. I know there are times when I’ll try to crawl off, as this self of body and soul (my thinking) which lives in the present time and space rears its physical needs, desires, cravings and will against that of God spirit of God who lives inside me, but I know I just have to climb back on board. Its not a bloody place. When I get what is called a ‘Flesh flash’ of me wanting to do things for me, the Spirit will help me deal with it. As the series went on, more and more insights came to me and at last I’ve begun to get on the next stage. I laid down my blog writing as a symptom of self, but I believe he’s given back to me this burning desire to share with people in this way through words so here I am.
Holy Spirit has pointed some stuff out to me, and its been a duh, as in Homer Simpson, how could I be so stupid not to see this before type thing, moment quite often lately!
Driving back from the Asylum seekers, I thought well at least I’ve done ‘something’ today, my day has had some worth. Then it was pointed out to me – who’s worth? God doesn’t value your deeds, although faith must have actions, he wont love you more because you’ve done this, he loves you full stop –duh!
Likewise thinking about tithing and I do it but Dave needs to up his bit a bit. Feeling well, I’m getting good at doing this with a generous heart, and loving God. So where is my prosperity? Of course I don’t need to do it for him to love me. Answer, who said it was with money?? Just look at how rich your life it……duh!
And finally. Prayer and worship, I’d grasped that we don’t need intercessors, Mary or the Saints, and that we don’t need to spend hours like hypocrites bending God’s ear with wordy prayers. We need to leave quiet for a reply. We can spend time chatting and worshiping and thanking.
Now the worship bit I’ve always had a problem with. What sort of God has an ego that needs to be smoothed with our pathetic praise? Why does he need us fawning at his feet. It was cleaning the shower rooms I got it. God is love, pure simple love. He wants first from us a reciprocal relationship, where we walk together in the cool of the day. Its like a love affair. When you fall for someone, you want to be with them and you want to give and love. Our father created us to make a pure reciprocal relationship, and we bogged it up. In pure love he died to restore the balance. We can now enjoy the purest, eternal love affair (I’m talking asexual here, both couple love and familial love) with God, and when you love them, you want to be with them and love them back. Eternity and the universe based on the purest form of energy, pure love. Its not egotistical, its love –duh!