It’s Time for the Prodigal Church to Hear the Voice of the Father
Something has recently erupted inside of me. Something incredibly divine and holy and very exciting. It is contagious. It is stirring up those around me. A group of us that meet together have been so rejuvenated that a typical comment is, "I´ve prayed for this! I need this! I just can´t get enough of God!"
As we entered this new deeper dimension of God, my friend Marilyn, who has taught at Christian Retreat and is one of the most mature and spiritual Christians that I know, cried, "I´m so empty! I´m so hungry and thirsty for God! WHAT have we been doing?"
I´m pretty certain that I know the answer, specifically because this supernatural awakening occurred in my life just recently. Through various circumstances and events, coming from many different sources and directions, I have grown more in my spiritual life and have learned more in the past few months than I have in my entire 22 years as a Christian. Suddenly, after praying for more than a year for the spirit of wisdom and understanding and the revelation in the knowledge of Him, from chapter one and chapter three of the book of Ephesians, God has opened my eyes and caused me to see that what has been distressing me for so long is that the church has been playing church. We do not tarry in the Upper Room because we have a diet of bulletins and announcements which center around man-designed programs, ideas and schemes so there is just no time. On the menu are committees and workshops, classes and seminars. We have evolved into thinking we must have entertainment, and sadly even sponsor rock concerts. All this hoopla and emphasis caters to our egos but it´s spiritual insanity. Jesus is crammed in briefly but He is not given a chance to transform lives. Nobody has been changed and the crowds leave no better than they came.
The Almighty King of the Universe is not and has not been the main attraction. I have become aware that the Lord, who is the ´head´ of His church, is trying to re-awaken a hunger and longing for more of Him, and only Him. He is trying to direct us back to the place of our ´first love´. We need to fall on our faces before Him who holds the seven stars in His right hand and who said to one of the churches in the book of Revelation, "I know how many good things you are doing. How you´ve labored and worked and how you can´t tolerate sin amongst your members and how you have examined the claims of those who say they are apostles (followers of mine) but are not. You have patiently labored and not quit ...BUT... you don´t love me as at first."
Did you notice that these Christians are working and laboring and having ´church´ and going through all the motions yet the Lord is reprimanding them? If Jesus is not center-stage and the ONLY one that is being glorified , then it is nothing more than a social club.
C. R. Oliver says it plainly, ´we have tried to Reform, Restore, Restructure and Renew using theological psychobabble when our message instead needs to be REPENT. He´s right on target because Revelation continues, ´repent and turn back to me again or else I will come and remove your candlestick´. Translated this means, ´ I will cause you to cease to be a church´. The church, which in essence is the group of believers with whom you worship and pray, is to give light to their surrounding communities but here Jesus warns them that He will extinguish their light if He is not the sole and ultimate reason for their existence. This should cause us to ´tremble at His word´.
The encouraging part comes however when Revelation continues by adding, "You have this one thing that is good which is that you hate the deeds of the Nicolatians (Christians who compromise in order to enjoy sinful practices) just as I hate their deeds. Let this message sink into the ears of anyone who listens to what the Spirit is saying to the churches. And those that overcome will eat of the Tree of Life which is in the midst of the paradise of God."
For this present time and for those that have ears to hear and those who live and move and have their being in Him, He has promised the latter rain. As the song says, ´It´s beginning to rain, hear the voice of the Father... singing whosoever will come drink of this water... He will pour His Spirit out on His sons and His daughters,´ so that out of our innermost being shall flow rivers of living water and we will be the church triumphant and glorious.
The fields are white already to harvest, therefore let us lift up the glorious, wonderful and majestic name of Jesus, so that He can draw all men unto Himself.
Copyright Donna Martonfi www.psalm40ministries.com Submitted 7/26/2003 5:38:21 PM | Post Comment