Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Different Authority

And when He had entered Capernaum, a centurion came to Him, entreating Him, and saying, "Lord, my servant is lying paralysed at home, suffering great pain." And He said to him, "I will come and heal him." But the centurion answered and said, "Lord, I am not worthy for You to come under my roof, but just say the word, and my servant will be healed. For I, too, am a man under authority, with soldiers under me; and I say to this one, 'Go!' and he goes, and to another 'Come!' and he comes, and to my slave, 'Do this!' and he does it" Now when Jesus heard this, He marvelled, and said, to those who were following, "Truly, I say to you, I have not found such great faith with anyone in Israel."
(Matthew 8:5-10)
"Who do you think is the most powerful man in the world?" i asked. His eyes widen, looking a little shock at such a question, at such a time. He looked like a child caught with his hand in the cookie jar. It was a Sunday morning, and i had been holding on to this revelation for a whole week now. So, i hounded him that Sunday, and pounced without any Hi, how'ya doing? pleasantry first. i totally scared him. i promise i have learned a softer way to approach people. i hope.  
i could see him thinking, his brow knitted, but still holding his cool. i could see him wondering if this was a trick question, unsure what to answer. Impatient, i answered my own question, "Would you say it is Barak Obama?" Still, uncertain, and a little fearful of a crazed, over zealous prophetic person, he kinda agreed, unconvincingly.
"So," i said gleefully now that i had his attention, "if President Obama were to visit us here in Australia, and he comes into our town, being the most powerful man on earth, do you think he is able to say, 'Hmm... I want a school here, and I want a library there. And I want to build buildings for low income people there. And maybe widen a few roads here and there'?" All these words tumbled out of my mouth because they have been canned within for days now. i saw his face lit up, his mind ticking. Brusquely, i added "No, he has no authority to such things." i could not wait for that idea to sink in. And i jumped in, "No, he had no authority to barge in here, and do as he like even though he has a lot of power. It would be our local government that makes those decisions. The Federal Government may not even have the authority to make such decisions." i was not sure who actually makes these kinds of decisions, and what are the procedures for such things to come about. 
That was about three years ago when i cornered a young and humble Youth Pastor who had asked me to intercede for him and his team. i was trying to show him that though i pray for him and his team, my prayers were not super, or that God would hear my prayers over his. His Youth Group was his domain, and he had the authority to command what comes and what goes. As intercessor, i stand next to him, in the authority that i had been given when he asked me, to support him, to come alongside him, and pray agreement to what he has the authority to do, under the guidance of the Holy Spirit. i encouraged him to take up praying for his team as much as possible, and i will cover him. i think he understood even though the way i had presented it may have freaked him out a bit. 
At work, it is the same. Even though my bosses are the owners of the business, they know that the front desk - all that paper work, all the tasks i do to support what they do - is my domain. When i come in to work on days that i work, i am in charge of my area. As small and as insignificant my job is as compared to the responsibility they shoulder as big bosses of the business, the authority to command how things are done to make my area run smoothly and efficiently and as uniquely me, is mine. i get to set the rules; i am the flavour of my domain when i come in. i get to bring who i am to that front desk, and i bring excellence. i bring a high professionalism, with heart because it is my area of influence. i can infuse my heart and soul, to shape the way the company is by governing my area as one uniquely set into this place for the days i am there. When i am kind, and polite, the company is kind and polite. When i am forgiving, and hospitable, the company is forgiving and hospitable. When i am cheerful, and joyful, the company is cheerful and joyful. i set the atmosphere of that front desk when i am given the full authority to be fully who i am in my area of responsibility. They understand that, and respect that. Because of that respect, they make my submission to their authority in their domain, their area of responsibility, delightful. They are not dictators, they are leaders who recognise the authority, no matter how small, insignificant or different it is, that is on people. They allow for people to be who they are, and not curb or overstep their places, even though they have the absolute power to fire me with no reason at all.
When we come together to intercede on Wednesday mornings, i am highly aware of this principle.

Monday, April 14, 2014

The Possible, Not the Inevitable

"For My thoughts are not your thoughts,
Nor are your ways My ways," says the Lord.
"For as the heavens are higher than the earth,
So are My ways higher than your ways,
And My thoughts than your thoughts.
For as the rain comes down, and the snow from heaven,
And do not return there, but water the earth,
And make it bring forth and bud,
That it may give seed to the sower and bread to the eater,
So shall My word that goes forth from My mouth;
It shall not return to Me void,
But it shall accomplish what I please,
And it shall prosper in the thing for which I sent it."
(Isaiah 55:8-11)
While i was chatting with friends, i saw her in the background, highlighted. She was picking up her bag, the fliers on her seat, ready to go. Her head was down, as if scavenging for anything she might have missed. She sat alone, and was about to leave without being noticed. i immediately knew i had to go to her. She was not going to come and slip away this morning. i hurried over to her without saying goodbye to my friends. Surprised, she looked at me with those unsure and questioning eyes. She always reminded me of a scared or wounded mouse. i always thought there was a lot of sadness in her eyes, a lot of pain. As if she is shouldering a lot of grief. i asked how she was. Then, i felt to say we have missed her for a few Sundays now. She replied saying that she had been away to Peru for her daughter's wedding. i was thankful that this reply presented many questions i could ask her; i was thankful she was not closed up, only giving one word answers. From one question to another, from one sentence to the other, slowly, the story of her life was uncovered before me. No wonder she always looked sad, unsure. Broken. It was heartbreaking that upon a word, her husband and her had uprooted themselves from their home in another state to come here, believing that they were supporting their pastor and his vision, to plant a string of churches all along the coast. Looking away from my eyes, she said quietly, "That did not work out." Now, many years later, all three of her adult children do not attend church any where. This incident has filled me again with the reverential fear of the Lord.  
The word of God spoken by the Holy Spirit is alive. It is like a light bulb had turned on, like an exclamation mark within our spirit. It is not mythical; it is not a hard puzzle to figure out. He promises to lead us, and guide us. He will surely answer us when we ask; when we enquire of Him what this word means, what are we to do to partner with Him for the fulfilment of this word. He is a good Father who takes us by the hand.
Then the Lord said, "Shall I hide from Abraham what I am about to do? Abraham will surely become a great and powerful nation, and all nations on earth will be blessed through him. For I have chosen him, so that he will direct his children and his household after him to keep the way of the Lord by doing what is right and just, so that the Lord will bring about for Abraham what He has promised him." (Genesis 18:17-19) 
The word of God does not originate from us; it is not our wish list. It is not a prayer list; it is not something that we dictate to Him. Rather, it is Him choosing to uncover to us what He is wanting to do. The origin, or source of a now word, a directional word, is God Himself, and when that word is prophesied in His strength, through the Holy Spirit, what is immobile is set into motion. As we cannot produce rain nor can we manufacture snow, i believe the word of God is His to give, in His timing, at His command. Because of the power of His now spoken word, i take pain to make sure that when i proclaim a word, when i prophesy with my mouth, i speak only what He speaks because while it is a huge honour, it is a heavy and solemn responsibility. That word, spoken by His Holy Spirit through us is able to sway a whole generation, or direct the path of millions. The fear of the Lord has to govern all of me; i make a great effort to make sure i do not taint His word, nor make that word an opportunity for my flesh. Or make a privilege into an opportunity to advertise me. i am scared out of my socks of misleading a whole generation, of millions of people. And when a directional now word has been spoken out, and set into motion, the intercessors are to bring that word continually before Him. It is not an occasion for us to look great before our peers even though we get to, we are privileged to share in and partner with Him in what He desires to do. When a directional now word has been set into motion, we must walk humbly before the Lord, holding tightly to Him, watching His every move.
Therefore, i take the training of the Lord seriously. i place His moulding and His shaping of my character at the utmost top of my priority list. i take responsibility for the health of my relationship with Him; i take responsibility for my growth in Him. i lean upon Him to feed me. i learn to strengthen myself in the Lord. i keep myself surrounded by people who have been granted to protect me, from my blind spots, from my stupidity. From my self! So that when i speak, i speak like Him - i present the possible, and not the inevitable. i believe that the word of God is conditional on our response and i believe that when He speaks, He sets into motion a process full of possibilities. We get to follow and keep on listening; we are forever looking for, listening for, checking with those He has set around us as shields for that next step, for that upgrade word because life with Jesus is a robust, current and living experience every day. Not that He changes His mind easily. Just that He wants to fine tune our vision, make clearer our understanding of where He is going, what He is up to. Because we can surely run too excitedly before Him, completely misunderstanding His intentions. As finite creatures, we can so easily be running after the desires of our hearts, thinking in a straight-line, looking in a short-sighted way. We can so easily be aiming at the destination, while He is interested in the destination, and the journey. He is interested in our transformation; He loves us to enjoy the becoming as we follow Him.    
The good news is: He is good! He will surely lead us, and guide us because in the first place, the plans and the purposes are His to begin with. And His desire is for us to be like Him.         

Saturday, April 12, 2014

True Friends IV

Then Pilate therefore took Jesus, and scourged Him. And the soldiers wove a crown of thorns and put it on His head, and arrayed Him in a purple robe; and they began to come up to Him, and say, "Hail, King of the Jews!" and to give Him blows in the face. And Pilate came out again, and said to them, "Behold, I am bringing Him out to you, that you may know that I find no guilt in Him." Jesus therefore came out, wearing the crown of thorns and the purple robe. And Pilate said to them, "Behold, the Man!" When therefore the chief priest and the officer saw Him, they cried out, saying, "Crucify, crucify!" Pilate said to them, "Take Him yourselves, and crucify Him, for I find no guilt in Him." (John 19:1-6)

The instruction is to not flinch. To stand still, and not react or retaliate. In the natural, i can think of many ways to answer to his accusation of me. If i do so, i would be playing into his hand for to argue is his strongest strength. Strangely, as i stand silently, watching, i can see clearer. When i do not give in to the tactic that he is fighting with, i can understand what is happening. When i stand with the Master, i stand secure.  

This is a familiar place; i have been here before. The last time, i questioned the Lord, i asked Him why was it that stab wounds can come from brothers? Why was it that those who were meant to cover me betray me, and instead turn to knife me down? i fell into this darkness and could not hear Him. i only vaguely remember the story of the Cross. And now suddenly, i find myself in a similar situation. Only this time, this spirit has morphed; the tactic has a different edge to it. The spirit has an added darkness to it. This is my second chance to learn a lesson i missed the last time. This time, i am determined to learn it as He intended. This is my moment for an upgrade in my gifting, in my relationship with the Lord. This time, there is no darkness or confusion within me; there is a peace, a still quiet calmness within. This time, i am standing firmly with Him.

i believe that God works cyclically and seasonally in our lives because of the things He wants to accomplish. He promises us that we will know His leading. My choice is to respond willingly to that guidance. i believe that wisdom comes from learning how He thinks, and how He works. i believe that God takes me on a journey from what i am now to who He desires me to be. On every step of this journey, i discover who He wants to be for me. By discovering Him, i find who i am. And this is a second chance or a repeat of a situation to confirm again who He is for me.

And when they came to the place called The Skull, there they crucified Him, and the criminals, one on the right and the other on the left. But Jesus was saying, "Father, forgive them; for they do not know what they are doing." 
(Luke 23:33-34a)

And this is the lesson for me to learn; this is what i missed the last time. For just as i am blind, those angry and hurting are blind as well. Just as when i was hurt and angry and was hurling anything i could get my hands at to throw at anyone at all, he is aiming all his anger at me. And i forgive. i forgive the darkness i see, just as the Lord forgives me of my darkness. That is how i am able to stand still and watch and not react or retaliate. Because i forgive. i know how much grace i have received. i know how much He has forgiven me of, and how much He has cleansed me and healed me of.

i realized that by naming him a true friend in my last post, i may have diluted or compromised the term. For that, i apologize. i am starting to re-think, or re-evaluate my definition of the term. This morning, as i sat with the Lord, He further opened up His written word to me. There is no way light and darkness can co-inhabit; what fellowship has light with darkness. And i choose Light; i choose Jesus. i cannot agree nor can i share with him any more. i cannot allow him to flavour me any more. i cannot fellowship with him any more.  

How sneaky can it be? How easily the enemy can twist the word of God, and warp His work? i will love; and that love looks like forgiveness. But i will not give in, nor will i condone darkness to keep peace. i will not bow nor will i give in to error. It will mean i may lose a friend soon. Love is not foolish, but truly wise.

Friday, April 11, 2014

True Friends III

And this is the message we have heard from Him, and announced to you, that God is light, and in Him there is no darkness at all. If we say that we have fellowship with Him and yet walk in the darkness, we lie and do not practice the truth; but if we walk in the light as He Himself is in the light, we have fellowship with one another, and the blood of Jesus His Son cleanses us from all sin. If we say we have no sin, we are deceiving ourselves, and the truth it not in us. If we confesses our sins, He is faithful and righteous to forgive us our sins and to cleanse  us from all unrighteousness. If we say that we have not sinned, we make Him a liar, and His word is not in us. (1 John 1:5-10)
His face turned a hideous green. Suddenly, it was as if very cleverly disguised tiny horns were showing themselves on his back where i could not see before because he had not shown his back until now. He went on an attack; his anger burning against me. He accused me of compromising myself; he called me confused, of swaying to and fro, not sure of myself. He accused me of being not loving, not compassionate, not embracing all peoples. Of rejecting such peoples like all the others. i was alarmed, but not surprised. Contrary to what he was accusing me of, i was actually calm; i saw everything as clear as day. There was no fuzziness, or any form of confusion at all. i knew that this something dark and sinister that had been lurking underneath would show itself sooner or later. i knew that sooner or later i would have to draw a very firm and clear line. i am his friend, but i cannot agree with him on this issue. The above passage was what the Holy Spirit gave me to seal my conviction. This is only one of many passages that He has given me when i sat with Him to think out what my spirit was troubled over. He gave words to what was a stirring within my spirit. He made clear what i was discerning, and brought concrete and sure evidence of what He is like, and who He is. By seeing who He is, what He is like, confirms who i am.
And as for you, the anointing which you received from Him abides in you, and you have no need for anyone to teach you; but as His anointing teaches you about all things, and is true and not a lie, and just as it has taught you, you abide in Him. And now little children, abide in Him, so that when He appears, we may have confidence and not shrink away from Him in shame at His coming. If you know that He is righteous, you know that everyone also who practices righteousness is born of Him. (1 John 2:27-29)
He does not realize that while i am able to discern religious pretentious spirits, i can also pick dark spirits, not of Christ. He does not realize that there is a very fine line between being authentic and being rebellious. And i can see that. i will be authentic, but i will not be rebellious. For rebellion is liken to witchcraft; it is dark and hideous, and clever. As religious spirits morphs, so does rebellious ones. Though they hide and disguises, they will show themselves in His light eventually.
So, how does one who is deeply, madly and unconditionally loved by the Almighty, deeply, madly, and unconditionally love an angry brother fallen from grace, bleeding profusely on the inside; he who reacted to manipulation by giving in to rebellion? i can see how he is tormented by the thoughts he has given access to his soul; i can see him enshrouded in darkness. How do i love such a one?
i think, number one: i must have a firm and sure understanding like a foundation upon i stand that unconditional love is not an emotion, nor does it follow an impulse or comply to anything and everything. Love is not fearful. Love is actually very sound; able to think very clearly. There is no shadow; the principles are simple and clean; no messy shades, no confusion. In other words, we are able to think and speak logically, and judge correctly in love. It feels like a strength; like a pure, clean stream; seeing and not reacting to what we observed.
i think, number two: Love is actually very wise. And wisdom is walking with a living God. i watch Him. i see what He is wanting to do. i stay very close to Him, and only engage when He does. i listen for Him. Only He has the keys to set a friend free; only at His command, by His strategies, in His time, we are set free. To love someone for Him is a privilege only He can give. To love someone is not an exercise to earn myself a badge or a merit point or a pat on the shoulder to advertise how amazingly loving i am. i stay quiet if He is quiet. i speak only what He speaks. And i hide often in Him.
i think, number three: i must guard my heart. i check my heart for any reaction to what i see; i rid myself of my own demons first. It means, if my friend's action has caused a reaction within me, a flaring up of something within me, that is an indication that i need the Lord first. i need to get myself healed up, cleaned up first; to allow Him to speak to me first. Who knows, perhaps, the whole incidence, the issue raised is not with my friend, it is with me. Who knows, all along He is after something within me. Who knows, this might be my opportunity to rid myself of something lurking underneath. And this is my chance for restoration and transformation. i grab such moments with both hands.
This brother is a true friend. Being true friends means we are there for one another. And i am about to find out how this will look like because many before me have rejected him; many have turned their backs on him, given him over to the dark side. i feel like that too; i feel like letting him go, deeming him hopeless, too far out there to be restored back into the fold. i have no answers yet. i am waiting for the Lord; watching Him. i have embarked on a learning journey to love like Him.     

Wednesday, April 9, 2014

True Friends II

'For I know the plans I have for you,' declares the Lord, 'plans for welfare and not for calamity to give you a future and a hope. Then you will call upon Me and come and pray to Me, and I will listen to you. And you will seek Me and find Me, when you search for Me with all your heart.'
(Jeremiah 29:11-13)
When God speaks, He does so with a purpose. He is intentional. And He does everything relationally. The declaration of His love for me in such a grand and awesome scale was not merely to build up my pledging self esteem, to patch up my insecurity or to boost my poor ego. He creates with His word. He spoke His love into me, not merely to build me up, but to construct an identity within me. i am now and forever Beloved by that very purposeful and intentional word. i am unshakeable; i have been confirmed into my true identity. And from now to forever, i need not strife or try to become significant; i already am.
Therefore the Lord will wait, that He may be gracious to you;
And therefore He will be exalted, that He may have mercy on you.
For the Lord is a God of justice;
Blessed are those who wait for Him.
For the people shall dwell in Zion at Jerusalem;
You shall weep no more.
He will be very gracious to you at the sound of your cry;
When He hears it, He will answer you.
And though the Lord gives you the bread of adversity and the water of affliction,
Yet your teachers will not be moved into a corner anymore,
But your eyes shall see your teachers.
Your ears shall hear a word behind you, saying,
"This is the way, walk in it,"
Whenever you turn to the right hand
Or whether you turn to the left.
(Isaiah 30:18-21)
When i heard those three words which more then sufficiently explained what was speaking to me visually, i knew that it was more than a pick me up. It was destiny; it was directional. A preparatory word spoken ahead of time to pave the path that i am to take in future. He is both constructing and preparing me to be the person in His heart - the true me. It is not a title in an organisation, nor is it a position in a hierarchy. It is a ministry not confined nor conformed to any definition that was and has now expired. In other words, i will smash all stereotyping, or pre-conceived ideas of who i might be. No one will be able to label me, nor will they find a hole to fit me in; i am not a square peg trying to be forced into a round hole; i am a shape no one has seen before. No one can categorize me, nor can they put me into a box. No one will be able to explain me; i am a new creation. i am a new work that the Lord has started globally. Many has already been called up; many He has started the process of restoration and transformation.
To have Him speak His love into me is strategic. i am a new breed of His advancing army who are not just anchored in His word, but are firmly grounded and rooted in His love. Those who are deeply, madly, and unconditionally loved by Him, will deeply and madly and unconditionally love like Him. We will love anchored in the wisdom of His living word. We are a new race intimate with Him because everything in the Kingdom is relational. Guidance is a natural by-product of a current, living and loving relationship with the Lord. And He promises that we will know where He wants us to go; we will hear His voice behind us, This is the way, walk in it.  This is our heritage as His true friends.     

Tuesday, April 8, 2014

True Friends

"Now My soul has become troubled; and what shall I say, Father, save Me from this hour? But for this purpose I came to this hour. Father glorify Thy name." There came therefore a voice out of heaven: "I have both glorified it, and will glorify it again." The multitude therefore, who stood by and heard it, were saying that it had thundered; others were saying, "An angel has spoken to Him."
(John 12:27-29)
"Wow, look at that!" captivated, i could hardly contain my excitement. i opened wide my eyes and breathed in the spectacular sight displayed before me. To me, it was glorious. i loved it. Like a joyous river that kept on flowing, i felt so happy. In awe. i was completely breathless by the colours, the form, the brilliance of the view right before me as i turned the car into the freeway heading home. i was greeted by this grand expand, as if made just for me.
"Yeah," my son answered uninterestedly, half-heartedly. Automatically. Ignoring his indifference, i continued to describe how stunning the clouds looked; so full, luminous, pressing so close to us, yet so far and untouchable. The lining was not silver. It was a golden colour that looked transparent. Though the clouds looked white at first glance, there were shades of yellows, of pinks and purple upon closer examination. So pure, so clean. i was delirious with this amazement. It completely surprised me. The sky looked like a huge blue canvas but more indescribably beautiful. As if, there was something different about this moment, this sight before us. Slowly, my son started to agree with me; he started to notice that though the sky looked blue, there were variation of blues from dark to light, and from cool blues to warm blues. There were tinges of gold in the blue. The clouds near the sun were especially glorious. The play of light and shadow in the fluffy cotton shapes that sometimes looked like recognisable things were delightful. Magical. i was completely mesmerized.

i do not remember when i started getting so overly fascinated by the sky. i mean, i have seen pictures and paintings of sunrises, sunsets; i have seen millions of calendar images of this sort. It has not been that long; perhaps six months ago that i started being drawn to it. Strange. My eyes are now drawn to the skies everyday. i do not plan it, i am suddenly attracted to the sky. Something is different. The sky is not two dimensional like a calendar page; it is a current and living moment each time i am drawn to it. Like a now word. Only it is not a word. 

This experience, this enjoyment is familiar. Like a dream, like a happy time from a long time ago. And i remember when i was perhaps seven, right opposite the terrace house we rented, was a huge Colonial English mansion with a huge garden. It was a wild garden with trees that yielded giant pink flowers that gave out a strong sweet smell. The garden was neglected, but full of mystery and adventure. We never met the owners of the mansion, but we knew the care-taker. He was a kindly older man who lived alone. He would sit on the veranda sometimes.  i remember spending hours wandering and playing in this garden alone; finding insects and natural objects most fascinating; looking intently at the treasures i found, and was filled with wonder, completely loving the colours that delighted my eyes, that fed my soul. i loved colours and forms. Textures, patterns. i loved the complexity of the designs. i still do. i remember being satisfied by simply looking at such things. i remember the smell of my sweaty skin, and the many little cuts and bruises i got from playing amongst the tall grass. i remember having no fear; i remember being free.

Now so many years into the future, i remember what that felt like. And my fascination is now with a different sort. A much bigger, utterly vast object - the sky. No two day is the same; no two minute is the same. It is completely amazing; it completely fills me up. i love the surprises i get; i love the enjoyment i get. The possibilities of hours of enjoyment is beyond comprehension. i am completely arrested. Just like when i was young; when i was in that garden of wonder and awe. Just like once upon a time. i did not choose it; it seemed to have chosen me. Only i am not sure when it started. i feel like i have been returned to a pure part of me. Only this time, it is returned to an adult me. A woman who suddenly remembers all these emotions.

Soon as i parked the car, i took a few pictures of the skies with my mobile phone. Another queer habit that i have picked up since my fascination with the sky started. When i looked at the random pictures i took, i was astounded. My heart jumped a beat.

i showed the picture to a friend the next day. Nice, he replied. It was a two dimensional calendar picture of clouds against a blue backdrop to him.

Driving in the car towards the school at half past two in the afternoon to pick up my kids, i was again greeted by the beauty of this majestic sky. So awesome in my eyes, so completely overwhelmingly breathtaking for me. Like a live show, like a living grand piece of art, so full of intriguing details, so bursting with movements. My heart was again expanded with love for the colours, the shapes, the humour of it all. And i found myself disheartened. i thought of the picture i took yesterday. No one saw what i saw. No one understood me. No one get me. Just as i was thinking these thoughts, i heard Him say, I Love You. Instantly, i understood. Suddenly, i became a lump of clay, as my heart responded in love. i get! That picture is no longer just a wonder, it has become a living word, a love note.That grand display was for me.

And i start seeing heart shapes everywhere. i begin to hear Him in objects; i begin to get Him. Suddenly, to be loved by the Almighty is more than more than enough. Life is complete. Life is already overflowing. Life is about being loved by Him. Only a lover would recognise another lover's voice. Even one unspoken, and painted all over the vast universe! 

When God speaks, He does so with a purpose, to create life, to give hope, and bring about an awareness of Himself in our lives. In my case, He has re-created; He creates again a part of me. In my case, He has begun to restore something stolen, robbed off, and lied away from me. In a few dialogue with friends recently, the thinking aloud of the question who is a true friend; what makes someone a person we trust, we confide in, we converse with, we do life with, people whom we love to be around with. i decided these ones i treasure as true friends are those who get me; who understand me, and accept me. Who get my little hidden messages. Because many times, the knitting together of two hearts are not by words, but by little messages in picture forms, in unspoken gestures. He is my true friend because He gets me; He is intimately acquainted with my ways, my quirky loves. And He is showing me how to be His true friend; i am starting to get Him; to understand the varied languages He speaks. He paints them loud and clear for me, because He gets me. He loves me.             

Friday, April 4, 2014

Super Heroes

O Lord, our Lord,
How majestic is Thy name in all the earth,
Who hast displayed Thy splendour above the heavens!
From the mouth of infants and nursing babes Thou hast established strength.
Because of Thine adversaries, to make the enemy and the revengeful cease.
When I consider Thy heavens, the work of Thy fingers,
The moon and the stars, which Thou hast ordained;
What is man, that Thou dost take thought of him?
Yet, Thou hast made him a little lower than God,
And dost crown him with glory and majesty!
Thou dost make him to rule over the works of Thy hands;
Thou hast put all things under his feet,
All sheep and oxen, also all the beasts of the field,
The birds of the heavens, and the fish of the sea,
Whatever passes through the paths of the seas.
O Lord, our Lord,
How majestic is Thy name in all the earth!
(Psalm 8)

As she described what she saw, occasionally pausing to search for words to convey what was tugging at her heart, sometimes using her hands to form abstract pictures, sometimes pausing with uncertainty, as if not sure what she was saying was sufficient to describe the impression within her, i could feel my lips twitched into a smile. A peace flooded into my heart; like a cool stream that sipped quietly into me. i understood exactly how she was feeling; i know exactly what it feels like to have this weight within her, something that is hard to describe, something hard to convey to those around us. Sometimes too abstract, like a hunch. Like a knowing. Sometimes fierce and urgent, sometimes like a brilliant thought or idea or concept. As she relayed to us what she read Him as doing in her church; how she felt His way has been misunderstood by others, i smiled.  i am so accustomed to the frustration that she was feeling; of people not seeing, or understanding things or situations so clear before us. i am so used to being the odd one out. Being the wet blanket when everyone is rejoicing; being the happy fool when all others are gloom or facing a crisis. i am often the one standing on the outside of the camp. Or, in most cases, the one camped in the watch tower, isolated from the life below. The one who is always saying the contrary to everyone else. Because of this, i am plagued with doubt; i battle with a constant questioning whether these thoughts are of my own imagination. Of my own self.

i felt like standing up from where i was seated, walking over to where she was sitting, to give her a hug, to soothe her questioning, to affirm her that what she was sensing has confirmed once again to me that she is the rightful person to intercede for her pastor, for her church. Instead, i stayed where i was, and allowed a surging word to rise to the surface. It felt like a strength within that bubbled to the top. It looked very much like a brilliant understanding. With a confidence not of my own, i prophesied to her that the strategies that she will use to pray for her church, her intercession for her pastor will be very different from how i cover my pastor, or the way we intercede for our church. As i spoke, an understanding followed. The territories we have been sent to take as two very different churches with two very distinctively diverse calling, authority and personality will require differing strategies, or planning, or execution. The way we are to reach two distinctively unique cities with very different characteristics and personalities one from the other will call for each of us to embrace who we are in Him - uniquely diverse, exceptionally and peculiarly us. Even though He is unchangeable, and His principles are firm and immoveable, there is no one-size-fits-all strategy or tactic or way of doing things in the Kingdom. In other words, even though He is utterly consistent, He is completely unpredictable. He is highly creative; He loves variety.

i encouraged her to give herself to the training of the Holy Spirit; to learn what to do with the revelation that she had received. To share or not to share? To whom to share it with? To learn to keep and contain His word; to learn to be trustworthy. To learn to take to prayer, to God. And when she feels to present her revelation to her pastor, i encouraged her to give in to the learning of how to present the word, to learn the language to present it. i felt myself getting anxious; i wanted to pour so much into her, to shield her from all the mistakes i had made in my time as intercessor. And i felt a tugging within to slow down, to not flood her.

i felt like a mother sitting with a pregnant lady - you know, anxious and wanting to prepare one who has never had a baby before for her impending journey ahead, only to be cautioned in my heart that our best lessons are learned experientially. As it has been my experience, no books or advise, though they may be helpful, had sufficiently prepared us for what was to come. Only by walking on water do we know what walking on water is like. There is so much so much i was anxious to share with her, to prepare her, to protect her. But i felt a need to pull back within. Quietly, i knew i am to stand a distance away, to give her the space for her own discoveries, her own growth, to learn her lessons her way, in His time, by His guidance. i am to stand a distance away, to only come alongside when called upon, and to under-gird when the occasion calls for it, and to allow her to learn her own lessons. All this for a season, for a time. And to give myself to my own learning.

Later, as we stood saying goodbye at the front door after the meeting, she clung on, indicating a hunger for fellowship, as if there was something heavy on her heart she was eager to share with someone. Even though i had a thousand million things waiting for me to do at home, i decided that they can wait for another day. i invited her to lunch. During lunch, we were simply two wives, two mothers, two women with many struggles in our multiple roles. Many of her struggles are familiar to me too; many of what she faces, i face daily. We are both women on individual journeys needing God to transform us, and heal us. Having taken off the super hero costumes we wore just an hour or so ago as Protector of our churches, we shared life as two friends. This is what the supernatural life looks like - normal, natural and full of everyday life. It is unthinkable that a Super God would choose to make super heroes out of two imperfect, natural mums to achieve something that He has orchestrated before hand so that as His super heroes, we are fail-proof. It is hard to comprehend that two broken people full of the normal struggles of daily life can be super heroes wielding super powers and making a difference, yet seeping coffee sharing situations we have yet to overcome.

Doesn't this show us a whole huge lot about who this Super God is, and what He is like?