I pray that you hear the same message I heard one morning as I had my prayer time. What did I really hear that morning? The Father of the Universe really does love ME. And He loves YOU, too.
Over a cup of coffee one morning, it went something like this.........
Me: Lord, I want to enjoy our relationship…
God: Kate, I don’t want you to just “enjoy” Me…I want you to love Me and seek Me with your whole heart, and even when you don’t enjoy it…even when you are entwined in other’s lives, even when you find yourself in your own pit of despair, even when grief and pain have you in their greedy clutches. Life is not always about your enjoyment. I REALLY WANT YOU. I long for your tenderness and loyalty towards ME. I just miss you and our talks.
Me: Father, I confess that at times, I do spend my time foolishly…I have overslept, checked emails, surfed FaceBook for status updates from my kids, washed dishes, folded laundry, fed or watered plants and animals. Most of my activities have had priority above my intimate time with You, AND DONE WITHOUT A THOUGHT! And I am merely "getting on" with my day…paperwork, deposits, groceries and chores. All I craved was another cup of coffee! That is “first fruits?” (Please never measure me by this, Lord!)
I do realize that my getting up EARLY to spend time with You can be ritualized and pious. After all, aren’t all those religious “Pharisees” watching?” They recommend “follow these rules, apply this formula, do this reading plan, spend at least 30 minutes upon awakening…sacrificing first fruits of my day to the Lord…” I know spending intentional time with you daily is vital, but Lord, I seem to constantly fail at this discipline.
God: Kate, I love you and accept you whether you DO IT or NOT, whether you DO IT FIRST or LAST in your day…I just want time with you. It’s true that I AM jealous of those other activities and the people that you give greater attention to, but Christ in you is your right standing with Me, not how much time or when you dwell in My Presence…I AM always with you…I NEVER LEAVE, but I DO miss being with you, talking to you...our communion. That’s why Jesus came and gave Himself…so that we could truly have fellowship in the cool of the garden again. Remember? The garden of your heart?
Me: Lord, where do You go when a believer sins? Since You are Holy and cannot fellowship with darkness or occupy the same place with sin, what happens to a believer who submits to the desires of their flesh and uses illegal drugs, for example? Where are You?
God: Kate, this sin is an act performed by the physical body, but actually took place in a heart life first… This beloved’s heart is more “sensitive” to the carnal things of their soul & their emotions rather than to spiritual things. This beloved’s mind THINKS primarily about gaining pleasure from drugs or whatever the sinful behavior is. The emotions FEEL and remember previous euphoria & escape experiences, and this beloved’s WILL desires to obsessively do it again & again. The physical body is compelled and driven to respond in addiction repeatedly. This is the battleground of spirit, soul, and body in every person, believer and unbeliever alike, whether the sin is drugs, sensuality, theft or lying. The root of all these sins is still doubt and unbelief that I, GOD, can be trusted with ALL of life.
Me: Yes, but where are You when we continue yielding to the enemy?
God: …In the same place I was when Jesus bore the shame of ALL mankind at Calvary. I turned My Head then, and I turn away now, too. I see the weaknesses of EVERY sinner merely acting out of this brokenness. All the while, they are unaware that My Remedy has already permeated, infused, and perfected every wound with heavenly balm. This beloved believer may never have truly embraced Me as Healer but has only made a mental decision much like your thoughts about your “to do” list. This believer's soul has not yet completely understood or received the full measure of the gift I have freely given.
Kate, how do I break through your brokenness to reveal Perfection to you? I turn My face towards you again and again. I embrace and caress you, I shout and sometimes scream dreams to awaken you. I whisper and continually sing the Invitation to come and dine with Me. These days, I use whatever means necessary to get your attention, even a busy "TO DO" list. Aren’t you hungry, Kate? Today, as every day, the menu is the same:
“Salvation” served with generous portions of Forgiveness,
Health, Deliverance and Wholeness for EVERY area of LIFE!
I hope you like Lamb….
Me: Oh, Lord, I am hungry and thirsty…. But You didn’t mention a Price List for the menu…
God: I purposely left the menu costs blank… All I ask is that you come to My table. My Word says, “I give to the one who hungers and thirsts from the spring of the water of Life without cost.” Rev. 21:6
Me: No cost?
God: Supping the meal with Me does command a sacrifice…the highest anyone could give.
God: Yes, Kate, you already know. It is you who must die to your self-idols…all those indulging, unhealthy relationships, absorbing thoughts, and self-serving activities. This kind of life requires dying to your cravings for all those delectable “side dishes” like the seduction of just one more bite. Dining with Me calls for starving your insatiable appetites, saying NO to the lust and greed in your heart for more, more and still more... If you don't get anything else from our conversation today, it is most important for you to understand how I view these idols in your daily life. Remember, I AM the Lover of your soul and essentially, your busyness sets up many opportunities for committing spiritual adultery against Me. Most people misunderstand the sin of adultery and see it only as a sexual sin committed against marriage while I view adultery as ANYTHING that poisons our Covenant relationship. Digest that for awhile.
We've talked about personal holiness before. Here's the secret. The beauty of Holiness requires the beauty of your sacrificial ashes first. I think it might qualify as "first fruits." In spiritual reality, this sacrifice of your will to satisfy yourself is what it truly means to “take up your cross daily and follow Him.” I know that your daily commitments are vital, but I AM more important than today's TO DO list. I would at least like to see some time allotted to JESUS written on the page. I think you would find such rest and peace there just fixing your gaze on My Name! Maybe even prop your feet up and enjoy another cup of coffee with Me!
Me: You really are inviting me to communion…true communion with the Bread of Life?
God: Yes, Kate! The most basic human needs, hunger and thirst, are satisfied only in a personal relationship with Me through Jesus. He makes you stand aright, straight and tall before Me. Clean, white and without a single fault, too. This is true communion and righteousness, My righteousness that Jesus died to give you. When My Spirit convicts you of your sin and repentance transforms your heart towards Me, I turn My face back towards you. I see My Beloved Son saturating you with balm and binding up your brokenness…again and again.
Me: Oh, how I needed Your revelation today, Lord…
God: Here are a few scriptures to help you along. Kate, look at the table…
The eyes of the Lord are toward the righteous and His ears are open to their cry. Psalm 34:15
Are your eyes darkened in your understanding? I want the eyes of your heart to be enlightened to the Truth that will truly set you free. Eph 1:18
They shall hunger no more, neither thirst anymore, neither shall the sun beat down on them, nor any heat; for the Lamb in the center of the throne shall be their shepherd and shall guide them to springs of the water of life; and God shall wipe every tear from their eyes. Rev 7:16-17
There will no longer be death, mourning, crying, or pain…He makes all things new…His words are faithful and true. He who overcomes shall inherit these things…life everlasting and joy unspeakable from the Lamb. Rev 21:4-7
These are My revelations for you today, beloved….
Me: Uh, Lord, is it ok… that I really …don’t eat …much meat….or even like…lamb?
God: Yes, Kate, I know….
You profess to be a vegan most days, but I AM watching you eat that rib eye steak EVERY FRIDAY NIGHT at the Astor’s Steakhouse….
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