Happy New Year everyone!!! This is my favorite time of the year. It is like a jubilee and I get to start all over again. I always expect each year to be better than the last one, spiritually speaking. I always sit down and reflect on the last year and my walk with God and see how far we have come. Sometimes it doesn’t seem like I have come very far, (naturally speaking) but I know that I have grown a bit more spiritually mature, Praise the Lord! All because of His great grace! Last year at this time I was wrestling with God over grace -vs- performance. I was like Jacob and I was not going to let go. I was sick of trying to discipline myself and attempting to make myself in what I should be. In short, I was sick of self and the religious trap of depending on myself to change me. I was sick and tired of failing to measure up to my self imposed standard of holiness. No matter what (I) attempted to do in the way of disciplining myself in this Christian life, I always came up short and failed. I was lamenting much like Paul, “For I do not understand my own actions [I am baffled, bewildered]. I do not practice or accomplish what I wish, but I do the very thing that I loathe [which my moral instinct condemns]. Now if I do [habitually] what is contrary to my desire……..O unhappy and pitiable and wretched man that I am”……..
I was sick and tired of being sick and tired. Have you ever felt that way? I have finally learned a secret. The secret of “entering into His rest”. Why are Christians so unhappy, miserable, mean, angry, sad and bewildered? The answer to that is actually very simple. I had walked in a pretty high level of His peace for years, in that no matter what external issues I faced, I was in relative peace,yet when it came to discipline and how I viewed myself, I struggled greatly. I know who God says I am. I can even quote you the scriptures. No matter what, no matter how much power I walked in, no matter how many miracles I was involved in or how much of His presence I personally experienced for myself, I always felt like I fell short, like I was never quite good enough. I mean like, well, how much fasting and prayer does it actually take to measure up to God’s standards? When was enough, going to be enough? Someone else always seemed to have it together more than I did. When I would hear prophetic words about what God was going to do, and if they appeared to hold me responsible in any way, for walking them out, I always knew I would not be able to receive them, because I always knew I would fail. I just could not be the one who would pray enough or fast enough or sit with Jesus long enough or worship long enough, to ever get the blessing.
We are spiritually wired in such a way, that nothing but an intimate relationship with God Himself is ever going to satisfy this hunger within us. When we talk about becoming His Bride we are talking about His ultimate destiny for all of us. There is nothing more personal, or intimate, or more holy than being His true Bride. I want you to know that in Him, we are already His Bride. When I talk about becoming His Bride it is not something we are going to obtain through good works or self discipline. What I am really talking about is that until we truly know Him, we will not realize that we are already His Bride. Everything that God has is already ours, legally and judicially. All He is and all He has, has already been given to us but until we step into Him, we simply don’t know or believe that. Our Father, Our Daddy is not withholding anything from us. We just are not receiving what He is offering because of “SELF”. Self is getting in the way. Not the real self, not the self God has created but rather the false self, the self perceived self, the self that must die and has died on the cross with Christ. All we need to do is to “cooperate” with Him. Are you ready and willing to let go of self and to cooperate with what Holy Spirit is trying to do in you? It is only hard because we have made it so hard. Jesus said His yoke was easy and that His burden was light. If our yokes are hard, they did not come from Jesus, they came from the false self, the lying self imposed self. Are you ready to discover who you really are? This is your year my friend.
Please continue to follow along with us on this journey to discovering who you already are. I spent a great deal of time trying to become what I already am. God has already placed deep within each one of us, the ability to know Him personally, to know who we truly are and to simply be all He desires us to be. The secret. RELAX. No amount of striving in self is going to produce anything of eternal value. Let go of all self. Give it to God. Listen to me. Insanity is “doing” the same thing over and over and “expecting” a different result. Are you ready to let go of self and to trust in God? Just let go, relax and be. God has placed within you an intense spiritual hunger for Him. This intense hunger within you, His Bride, has captivated the Lord’s attention. Your enlightened and expressed desire to personally know Him has caused Him to come and seek you alone. Can you feel that? Can you see that? It is real. He is drawing you into Himself as we speak. You have come to a place where you are determined to intently follow after Him. The Lord is revealing to you, right now, His intention to bring forth from you, His potential, His best from within you.
The Lord is talking to you right now, telling you, His Bride, that He has seen within you the quality and the potential that will enable you to successfully respond to His training and discipline. By submitting yourself to the necessary process of qualification, you are being prepared to become a part of those who will bring forth His beauty, majesty and sovereign glory, in the coming day of His manifestation in glory and power. 2nd Thess. 1:10. As we follow along in the Song of Solomon we can see that the Bride responds in reluctance to how the Bridegroom views and sees her. S of S 1:10, 16-17, 2:1-2. He says, ” your cheeks are comely with rows of jewels, your neck with chains of gold. We will make your borders of gold with studs of silver.” Gold is a type of “divine nature”, the image of Christ. Silver speaks of the purifying process and of righteousness and jewels speak of enhanced beauty. The Bride responds in a way that sees herself as “common” and ordinary. Behold, You are fair, my Beloved, yea, pleasant: also our bed is green. The beams of our house are cedar, and our rafters of fir. I am but a rose from Sharon, just a lily in the valleys. Cedar and fir trees were very common in this area. She saw her house as ordinary and her bed as plain(green). She is saying, Lord, this potential that you seen in me, that of royalty and of becoming righteous;, Lord, all this seems beyond me. I am a simple, ordinary person without any special qualities or abilities. I have very little to offer. I am just one lily of many. Why should you single me out? What do you see in me?
He responds, “As the lily among thorns, so is My love among the Daughters.” The Bridegroom is saying to you, “You may be as you say, but I saw the hunger of your heart. I was moved by your determination to obediently respond to Me when you first prayed, ‘draw me’. You are expressing a longing for Me, more than your present experience, and it turned My heart and desire towards you.” I see “you” as more precious than all the other lily’s. She possesses an intense spiritual hunger for Him, but misunderstands its intended purpose. Rather than waiting for spiritual fulfillment directly from Him, she is seeking a present satisfaction through natural means. She is satisfied from only His shadow. S of S 2:3-5. She sees only the blessings from the apple tree, ( the apples ) and enjoyed the shade from the tree, ( His shadow ) but missed the tree ( Bridegroom Himself ). At this season in her relationship with Him, this was all she was capable of expressing to Him. Yet, He is pleased with her because He recognizes it is coming out of sincerity of her heart. She did not yet understand that the “shadow” is far less than He intends for her. She has entered into a time of rest, but the Lord is patiently awaiting for her to understand that she was created for far more than just to receive His blessings.