This blog may be a slight continuation of my previous blog, or maybe not, that remains to be observed.
I ask for God’s heart and wisdom as I begin my dance with words today.
Within this last year as part of my re-journey into the gospel of Jesus, I had a vision.
I’ve not shared this vision with too many as it impacted my heart quite deeply; I’ve not known quite what to do with it, save that it became part of my journey back into the roots of the gospel.
Today I think that it will be shared.
I was fully awake yet resting, stretched out on the floor with my eyes closed when I found myself upon the back of a large eagle flying over both a grievous and hopeful sight upon earth.
What I was being shown was a solid, tightly bound, large circle of grayed out roofs; they looked as though they had been sprayed with ash. I understood that I was looking upon the roofs of multiple churches huddled together. The churches were dead, wiped out, there was no evidence of light whatsoever.
Around this circle of grey was yet another circle, a ring of “believers” fighting each other with blunted wooden weapons; I could see that they were poking and prodding one another, and then with what looked like an overtake of boredom they would quit fighting with one and turn to fight another; this circle of people was deep.
And then a most curious sight, a child dressed in white began to walk out from the center on a straight, brightly lit path towards the outer circumference of which held the most unimaginable beauty; green pastures surrounded a broad river flowing from what was inexpressible light, and beyond the river, on the far shore was a mountain, large and majestic in beauty…the child was journeying there; the curious part? The fighting stopped cold and weapons dropped as they observed the child’s journey “out”.
I could weep.
Weep for what?
For the hypothetical number of those who have become disillusioned with church, who she is, and why she exists, and who have walked away tired of church politics, of talking about and dealing with things that keep the church locked up, sealed, self- absorbed and deaf to the many outside her doors crying out to be loved, accepted and encouraged, hungry for the real Jesus; those tired of being part of an institution that has quenched the Spirit of the living God by dabbling in “acceptable” ongoing discussions that have little to no impact of the life and love of the transforming power of Jesus Christ through His Bride.
For the hypothetical number of those who do love Jesus, who have literally grown up in the church (“church rats”), and who need the truth of Who Jesus us and Who He is not; who need the power of the truth of the gospel all over again.
For those hungering and thirsting for more, for more of the deep mysteries of the Word of God, desiring preachers and teachers who are no longer afraid to live by the truth in order to deliver the truth, Spirit led and filled prayer, lamentation and joy; for skilled, trained Spirit filled worship and instrumentation. Those who are thirsting for simplicity, for God’s intended purpose of the proclamation of the gospel and the equipping/disciple making and encouragement (O the encouragement!) of the saints.
I also grieve for how long it has taken me to “de-church”; this mid-life awakening is a result of my own mind finding itself fully before God, to drop the fear of being incorrect and march into the fray with faith that God has me, He will course correct a heart and mind that is truly His; and “the Church”, He knew, had become a place of dictation and method, a programic time machine to me (in case you are wondering, I’ve been in church since I was born 53 years ago, 22 of those I was a pasor’s wife -wife to an amazing pastor I might add!).
Sunday after Sunday I had wondered what would happen if the Spirit showed up and 10 random people walked forward in the middle of the structure and needed prayer, salvation or even desired to be baptized.
This post is growing arms of distraction, but I desired to share a fraction from my own journey lest anyone would gather an impression of self-righteousness and piousness; I can grieve for the Bride not only because of the vision but because I myself had become discouraged and disillusioned of her purpose…I HAD FORGOTTEN.
Redemption sure is sweet when one has wallowed in the mud and lived to climb back out.
The church IS the Bride of Christ, perhaps we (I) have not taken her visible presence on earth seriously enough, nor the clarion call of her beacon to the entire world. If the present climate of world attitude toward the Bride is hostile, (though we are fore-warned of this coming reality through scripture) what does this mean for her future? What does this mean for each of us now?
What would the world be like with NO CHURCH?
The hope of Jesus is that we are a forgiven people, a loved people, an accepted people, a redeemed people, a called to holiness people, lives that look and fragrance like Jesus the Son of God people, we are family, God’s daughters and sons, that makes us sisters and brothers, there are no outcasts in this family, not a single one…this is the gospel, this is the inescapable fragrance and beauty of the Church.
I’m praying for a broad sweeping crush of conviction that leads to true repentance, and a keenly felt spiritual hunger for the more of Who our King IS and Who He is NOT.
I’m praying for sight upon the level ground at the foot of the cross and the restoration of the joy our salvation.
I’m asking not for revival, but rather desperation for the Son of God, for hope to rise before those who walk in spiritual disillusionment and unbelief, and that they would hear the whisper of God beckoning them out of the shadows into His glorious light.
I’m asking for broad sweeping courage as eyes are filled with the fixation of King Jesus; that many will suit up and stand up to love a broken and lost world, whatever that may cost each of us.
Revival is an old word, used to describe a mass turning to Jesus at significant points in history, I think this word has not only lost its “sound” of significance but it has also led our focus foolishly away in our prayers…it is not revival we now need, it is repentance at the deepest level of our souls.
We have forgotten the King.
We have forgotten His “Why” of Jesus.
We have forgotten.
“If my people who are called by My Name humble themselves, and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, THEN I will hear from heaven and will forgive their sin and heal their land” (2 Chron.7:14).