Our Spiritual Potential/1

“True spiritual success is not measured by how many people we appear to touch with Holy Spirit or by who we attract. True spiritual success is measured by our ability to personally and corporately attract God’s manifest presence.” By our own efforts we can make our ministries move and appear like they are really going somewhere and still be out of the will of God. Those who appear to be not going anywhere may be closer to the will of God than those who are moving “very fast”, but by their own human or self effort. We must be led by Holy Spirit, our true teacher, and learn to wait upon Him and be patient. The wheels do not move unless the spirit moves. Ezek. 1:20 (Wherever the spirit went, the creatures went and the wheels rose along with them, for the spirit of life of the four living creatures [acting as one] living creature was in the wheels.)

  A friend of mine put it like this. The “will” within the wheel. Our wills so submitted to God that it only moves when He, the wheel moves. There are many who sincerely believe they are in the will of the Lord but who are only moving based on daily circumstances or (emotions) that effectively move them one way or another, or by their own wills. The Lord is very gracious and patient with us so we never have to worry or live in fear of making mistakes as we “learn” to walk with Him. He understands our weaknesses and shortcomings better than we do. The key to moving effectively with the Spirit is to develop intimacy with Him. If we are doing a lot of stuff “for” Him but spending very little “with” Him, are we really “attracting Him?” Psalm 127:1, Except the Lord builds the house, they labor in vain who build it;except the Lord keeps the city, the watchmen wakes but in vain.
  The methods that the Lord uses to bring us into the level of spiritual maturity that He desires for us are progressively laid out, step by step, within the Song of Solomon. These spiritual principles are available to, and will work for, all those who prayerfully seek to understand the “ways of the Lord,” with a sincere desire to “apply” this higher realm of divine relationship to their life experience. As we follow along and identify ourselves with the Bride’s journey we will notice the “self-centered” seeking that is exposed through her response: “The reason I love you is because of the many things that you bless me with.” However, the Lord is looking beyond her present immaturity to the sincere hunger of her heart that she has expressed to Him in prayer, “Draw me, we will run after You” S.of S. 1:4. Understanding this, He responded to her true need rather than to her present spiritual condition and desires.
  The problem is that the Bride has attached herself to “another branch”. Please see S.of S. 1:5-6. John 15:1-4 states that Jesus is the “true” vine or branch, and that we can do nothing without Him. She has attached herself to (my mothers children, the Daughters of Jerusalem), rather than joining herself to the “vine” (the Bridegroom). In effect she is saying, ” I have centered my life in those who represent the Lord (my mothers children, others, a church or ministry), and I have labored long and hard for them, even in the heat of the day (black she is sunburned). Then, I realized that although I had worked more diligently than others, I was “neglecting my own vineyard.” Bill Johnson (Bethel church Redding California), puts it like this. 2nd hand impartation should always lead us into hungering after 1st hand impartation. While the Bride did a great job tending another’s vineyard, (dong a lot of good stuff for others) she was all along neglecting to tend her own vineyard, (intimacy with the Bridegroom). I am not suggesting we don’t work in building up others, I am suggesting that building up others but neglecting our own personal intimacy with the Lord will leave us wanting. Please read Psalm 23.
  She has realized that working for the Lord, even with intense zeal and even with the results, cannot satisfy the deep spiritual hunger that the Lord has placed within her. We have to learn and accept the fact that the more true spiritual progress we make and the closer we become to the Lord, the more lonely it will become. Most of the Daughters of Jerusalem will not understand your journey. Thus, we must avoid judging or criticizing ministries (Watchmen) or other Christians or churches (Daughters of Jerusalem) whom the Lord uses to produce discontentment and discomfort. She recognizes her spiritual barrenness (a closed door into His presence) and cries out to the Lord. S.of S. 1:7. She had become so busy and self-reliant that she failed to recognize His voice when He sought to direct her path to Himself.
  She learned that she needs more than just being blessed by the overflow of someone else’s spiritual experience (the flocks of her companions). She understands that  being fed by the testimony or ministry of another is good, but not sufficient to meet her deepest need. She has come to a place in her spiritual development where she realizes that it is essential for her to personally and intimately know Jesus, her Bridegroom. She must “abide” in Him or die. With intense desire she longs to know what she should do and asks the Lord for guidance. The Lord instructed her to search out those who are “like spirit” or like-minded to Him, who truly know and walk with Him (footsteps of the flock.) She is to find and follow them, as they will lead her to Him (the shepherd’s tent) rather than to themselves.

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