Wednesday, May 21, 2008

"I Just Feel So Dry"

The following will be more of a blook than a blog. If you are one of my faithful readers and you are more accustomed to a quick read, such will not be the case here. You may have to take this in some paced plan of reading. No apologies; I have good news here.

My spiritual journey of late has taken me through a wide range of lessons, emotions and, ultimately, sweet, sweet growth. I’d like very much to relate what’s been trusted to me and, if you’ll have it, make it yours. Submission to someone who has gained wisdom from God will save years, even decades for the recipient. Watchman Nee once said, in essence, we can lengthen our lives by buying the years of someone whose spiritual authority is authentic. If that doesn’t sound humble enough for you, then I offer this; I’ve always seen myself as one of God’s crash test dummies. If you just long to be thrown into walls and waste time picking up the pieces go ahead…you can quite literally knock yourself out. Or, I offer you my test results.

Several months ago I wrote a blog entitled, “Hello. My Name is Truth”. For the sake of my purposes today I’d like to ask you to revisit these words;
“Truth will wreck you. It will set you right side up is an upside down world. Truth will strip you of every selfish notion devised by your past, your pains, your problems, your personality, your preferences, your possesiveness, your poverty, your personality, your prosperity, your pity, your power, your perfectionism, your performance, your peers, your paralysis, your predespositions, your prudishness, your put-ons, your papa and your paranoia.

Truth will meet you head-on with no intention of slowing down or dodging you. It's reality will be like headlights frozen on high-beam bearing down on you in it's own lane, challenging you to awaken to the reality that you are in the wrong lane. As a matter of fact, Truth won't even ‘honk’. That sound you hear is your adrenalized heart-beating.

Truth, while not forgiving in itself, will lead you to forgiveness. Truth is a living power, a driving rain storm, a relentless blizzard and a sunshine drenched perfect day. Jesus said, ‘I AM the Truth....’. Truth walks. Truth talks. Truth laughs. Truth weeps. Truth bleeds. Truth will die with every intention of living larger later.

Truth will set you free, not in spite of these things, but BECAUSE of these things. Truth heals us when we accept the stark fact that we don't know it. Truth delivers us when we crawl across the gravel of life, reach our bleeding fingers toward its hem and snatch it hard to our weeping face and say in our heart, ‘If I can just touch the edge of Truth I will be free’.”

Someone once said, “the truth will set you free, but first it will make you miserable”. The length of the season of misery is entirely up to us. If we resist it, if we try to negotiate with it and even if we acknowledge it but postpone our cooperation with it until a more convenient time, the misery is ours and the freedom waits.

Here’s a Truth; Psalm 68:5,6 says, “A Father of the fatherless and a judge for the widows, is God in His holy habitation. God makes a home for the lonely; He leads out the prisoners into prosperity, only the rebellious dwell in a parched land”. The Amplified Version of verse 6 says, “God places the solitary in families…”.

Note the clear description of God’s character which anchors Him in His purposes, plans and procedures. Everything God does flows out of His enthroned character. Since He is a perfect Father, He acts in our lives AS a father to shepherd us into families and out of solitude. When He sees loneliness, He acts precipitously to create a home, a covering and a protective productive environment to drive the loneliness far from our experience. Why? To create the hot-house for our best human potential.

Even if I have done something worthy of imprisonment, God is acting just outside my line of sight arranging a scenario for my prosperity if I will dare to cooperate. I can most certainly choose to throw in the towel and spend my remaining days crying about how “the man” put me down and I will most certainly die with an impoverished heart. Or I can come out of whatever prison I’ve been in, lean hard on the enthroned character of God and discover new treasure and prosperity for my soul.

But it’s the last part of Psalm 68:6 that can really shake us up; “…only the rebellious dwell in a parched land”. Ouch! Do you see what I see? Since God’s character will only allow Him to be Good and out of that Goodness He is creating a home, a covering and a protective productive environment for my highest and best human potential then the only thing that could put me in a parched dead place is my own rebellion to Him.

Now here’s the punch-line of this whole matter; God’s Kingdom Transcendency functions at its highest supremacy in the context of the anointed corporate family. That’s called covering. When I am in a covering, I am submitted to the greater purposes, plans and procedures of God’s greater power and presence. When I am separate from covering I am subject to the parched and withering effects of standing alone in the wind and heat. In a covering I am consistently available to the natural and supernatural resources gathered by a family made for me by God’s enthroned character. It’s impossible to be dried out in that climate! In fact, another Psalm (133) says that when spiritual siblings dwell (consistently hang together) in unity (passionate purpose) it is like the dew of Hermon coming on the mountains of Zion and God COMMANDS a blessing there! Where God COMMANDS blessings, you don’t have to ask!

If I’m parched then I need to return to the last place I remember being watered. For me, that would be in a spirit anointed covering family. But to be perfectly honest, I cannot remember the last time I felt parched….no brag, just fact. Why is that, you might ask? Because I refuse to live outside of the atmosphere of God’s character which is always preparing the environment of a covering home creating the hot-house for my highest and best.

Many of you know that my wife Ginger and I recently traveled to Redding California for a Leadership Advance at Bethel Church. This is my 2nd trip there in the last 7 months. What you might not know is that we also went there to finalize our new relationship with them for covering and ordination. We have spent the past 2 years looking into what God is doing through Pastor Bill Johnson and the Bethel tribe. I’ve read countless books and articles by them, listened to hundreds of hours of teaching, talked with one of the gentlemen who is a part of their apostolic team and furiously sought the Face of the Father for discernment and leading. When we arrived, Bill said to the conference, “This whole week is going to be about impartation” and it was. Session after session was totally disrupted by the raw power of God coming in the room and owning us.

The end result is that our church and Ginger and I are now a part of a Kingdom Family that goes by the name of Global Legacy (the church networking arm of Bethel). We have entered into this covering with more joy than I can adequately express with the English language. I’ve told many people that the DNA match is perfect and the atmosphere of Heaven’s Kingdom is increasing in us and around us exponentially. The atmosphere of our church is tangibly ALIVE and spiritually drenched! We’re not praying for revival, we are in one and the Kingdom of God is present here with power! Our prayer now is for stewardship of this work to spread through time and space as it is passed to the next generation for multiplication of its efficacy and influence.

The reason we began this search is that where we have been in a family of covering for 25 years has ceased to be able to function in that capacity. I will continue to follow the path of the honorable sons of Noah who backed into the bedroom to discreetly cover the embarrassment of their dad (Genesis 9:23) as it relates to this matter. It is only germane to the subject to say the time had come for us to follow God’s character into this new tribe.

Here’s the specific teachable moment of this blook/blog. If you are and have been parched for some definable length of time, ask yourself; “Am I cooperating with the precipitous nature of God’s desire to cover me with spiritual family?”

Even if you are physically in a church you might be rebelling against what God is trying to do on your behalf in the context of that tribe. The result is that dry dearth all around you. End the rebellion and dive into the deep end of what God is doing in your spiritual family.

Or, you might be staying in a “church” where God has not specifically planted you. Your thirst is calling you out of that wilderness. “Oh, but brother….God has called me to the wilderness”. There are 2 types of wildernesses in scripture: one was the result of rebellion where a few days journey turned into 40 years of wandering. If that’s your wilderness…for crying out loud REPENT and get out of there! The other wilderness lasted for 40 DAYS and ended in a reverberating triumph over the devil when Jesus stepped forward into His destiny. If your “wilderness” has lasted longer than 40 DAYS your victory over the devil is overdue…get a Word from God, and put darkness under your feet as you walk out of the wilderness and into your destiny.

It is impossible to be dry for more than a few days at a time if I’m properly positioned in the spiritually covering family that the nature and character of God has drawn me into. Here is yet another Psalm (chapter one) that I will paraphrase and end this with; “Blessed is the person who has had an awakening of heart, soul and mind to end relationships that just suck the life out of them without any return or end in sight. That person has had the Spirit’s good sense to be delighted with God’s nature and character which will plants them in river enriched soil that supernaturally makes them like the most glorious tree you have ever imagined with leaves as big as elephant ears and greener than Al Gore. Everything they touch flourishes, thrives and prospers because they are loaded with an intrinsic value that radiates out from them and brings value to their surroundings.”