Bulldozers and YOU!
Thursday Morning, August 22, 2002
It matters to God that we truly live out the Life of His Son together, rather than just teach about it and sing about it!
We’ve GOT to keep the Vision where God wants it, no matter what anyone’s (bad) experiences are. As Luther might have said, “Show me Teaching in the Scriptures that we should be happy with mediocrity, lukewarmness, and leaven in His Church, and that the gates of hell should be able to prevail daily in the lives of those in the church…and THEN I’ll recant. Until then, kill me if you must. I will not accept a lower Vision for His local assembly than what the Scriptures teach we should live for and be willing to die for!” Without His vision, the people cast off restraint. They’ll settle for the television, the VCR, the DVD player, the World Wide Web, “family outings,” “family vacations,” and more and more work and worldliness…if they can’t SEE it. “Repent…for the Kingdom is at hand.” Why? “Because there is something to truly live for now! Not just the King, but the Kingdom, too!!” “The splendor of Holiness” is only truly appealing in the midst of the genuine pillar and foundation of Truth, the Household of God, Bethel—the stairway to Heaven.
And, in lieu of a Lampstand where we live, our job is to be Faithful with our “Bulldozer Assignment”—clearing the Ground, Preparing the Way. We are “voices crying in the wilderness” when we are in this position. We will find ourselves aggressively working to clear the stumps and the rocks, and sow the Seeds of His Glorious Life, on earth as it is in Heaven. We will make the time in the evenings and on the weekends to visit places and people—shaking, beseeching, imploring, rattling cages, shaking boats, praying valiantly, loving emphatically. And then, as we are prepared in this way, and perhaps the place where we live is prepared for Him, He Sends to “every town and village where He is about to go.” HE “determines the exact times and places where men should live.” If we are “seeking first the Kingdom” (rather than our li’l ol’ jobs, our preferences about climate, nation, housing, biological relatives and the like), we will be able to HEAR Him better and know where those “exact times and places” may be. Hearing Him is directly related to being abandoned to His Voice, in utter and radical obedience (Rom. 12:1-2; Jn. 7,8,15).
And, what does it mean to “seek first the Kingdom”? The Kingdom, as you know, consists of a King…and some dumbs. : ) The Kingdom is about people, not just the King. “Seek first the Kingdom”—not just the King. “Seek first” the Expression and Life and Benefit and Subjects of the King. If His People are listening to the Shepherd’s Voice, He’ll direct our steps into His ultimate plan for publicly humiliating and defeating the enemy. That’s WHY we’re still on this planet. “God’s Intent, NOW through the CHURCH, is to make known His many-faceted and powerful Wisdom, even to the principalities and powers” and to impart His Life as He “builds His Church that the gates of Hell cannot withstand.”
PRIORITIES! “Seek FIRST the Kingdom!” Few would tolerate Acts 2:42-47 in their lives because honestly, they don’t want the Christ-Life. They prefer God to be on their schedule. That’s “love of the world” and “lukewarmness” and “idolatry” on some level, whether intentional or not. If we allow the world and its demands and our desires to dominate our schedules, and then try to add Him to all of that nonsense, we’re making a huge mistake and we’ll never “SEE Him Who is invisible,” or “SEE the Kingdom” in our lives. We may “escape as one through the flames,” but we’ll never truly “taste the power of the Coming Age”—as is our Inheritance. Unfortunately, most will die in that state. They allow guitar lessons, little league baseball, errands, housework, making money, spending money, isolating and focusing on their genetic family, home-schooling, and a thousand other things to consume the majority of their time and energy.
Those who say they have continual wondrous ecstatic experiences with Jesus, but live in this state of mixed priorities and worldliness (except on Sunday) are generally hallucinating. Living truly in “the power of an indestructible Life” comes from “losing your life”—“dying to the world and the world to you”—and “the seed falling to the ground and dying.” The only place where the enemy is shamed and destroyed is “the cross.” “It is the same now.” He is our “all in all” and one will “live and move and have our being in Him,” or it is not the Testimony of Heavenly Life which Jesus lived for and died for. We may not be addicted to going to “bury my father,” or “saying goodbye to my father and mother.” Those radical things JESUS said were mandatory in order to be the real thing—ARE MANDATORY! : ) Jumping up and down on Sunday in a meeting, or knowing a lot of Bible will not substitute for Reality. “Jesus we know and Paul we know about—but who are YOU!!??” said the unimpressed demons that ripped to shreds the religious men with the right words. In the unseen realm, it matters what our real daily priorities are, and how we really live, and where our passions and time REALLY are.
The Kingdom is entered with much tribulation, I guess, eh? Worth it? OH, yes. “A HUNDRED mothers, brothers, sisters, lands, possessions, tribulations, and Zoë Life that always was and always will be!” : )