Where is Truth?
No matter what changes God has wrought in you, never rely upon them, build only on a Person, the Lord Jesus Christ, and on the Spirit He gives.
All our vows and resolutions end in denial because we have no power to carry them out. When we have come to the end of ourselves, not in imagination but really, we are able to receive the Holy Spirit. “Receive ye the Holy Ghost”—the idea is that of invasion. There is only one lodestar in the life now, the Lord Jesus Christ.
I am learning – yet I still feel I am peering through a lot of fog. Sometimes I wonder if I may be slipping into too much introspection or at least getting somewhat out of balance if there is such a thing as balance in this area. I need to get a much clearer heart picture of Jesus' heart and what His feelings and attitudes and thoughts are toward me. I still feel I need to discover my true identity.
I found today's devotional convicting along this line, an affirmation of what I have been sensing in my own spirit for a few days. I focus a great deal on what God is doing in me, but maybe I am trying to build on those things too much instead of learning what it looks like to build only on Jesus. It all sounds so much like clichés and yet I know that these words reflect realities that I need to experience and become familiar with more.
It is quite clear that I am in need of much more of the Holy Ghost. God has been speaking to me about this for several days from various sources. I am trying to listen – even trying to learn how to listen. I feel like much of my effort just goes into trying to learn how to properly receive the messages God must be trying to give me. I feel like my whole way of relating to God needs updating, revision, sharpening, deepening.
An item I feel convicted has been brought to my attention for further research is to find out the real meaning and significance of the separate containers that held the backup oil for the five wise virgins in the parable of Jesus. From completely separate sources and only a few days apart this has been brought to my attention and I feel that it is something I am supposed to know and that is very important for me. I can see it has something to do with the Holy Spirit but I believe there is much more in there I don't see yet.
Yesterday I also heard some things from Wilder's latest Munchies series that also alerted me considerably and that I need to ponder intentionally for awhile. It has to do with how we relate to each other and the ways that we convey what is really important about people. When I hear what he says about this it makes so much sense but yet it is so radically different than how my mind has been trained to think. It takes determined effort to get past what feels natural and to adopt a new way of thinking.
He reminds me that the mistakes and faults that people have is never the most important thing about them; that is not what defines their identity even though I typically feel that way very often. Most of us have been raised in the counterfeit system where we were told all the things we should not do or be and the punishments and consequences that would happen if we did them. This is the fear-based way of living that is the mainstream of most of our life experiences, but it is not the way heaven desires for us to live and relate to each other.
When we dwell on the negative things about each other or even about ourselves, we come to assume that this is what defines us, who we really are and our value and identity. But the big problem with doing this, besides the fact that it is based on the wrong source, is that we are still left completely clueless as to what our real identity is supposed to look like. Many of us never even knew that there was another identity associated with us, one that God designed right into us that is waiting to be revealed to us and all those around us. This is our true identity but one we may have never been aware of before.
But because we are not used to thinking in this way we tend to only talk about our problems, our hang-ups, our past mistakes and sins and then wonder why we struggle so hard to become free of all those things. It is because we subconsciously identity all those things as who we really are that we find ourselves continually drawn to repeat them. We do this to others as well. Or alternatively we may live in denial of our issues and faults and resort to blaming everyone else for our malfunctions. But either way, we are not being shown what our real selves might look like, who the real person is that is latent inside of us that God created us to be. Therefore, all that we have heard about as a model is our mistakes or the faults of others around us that we focus on.
James Wilder shares that what God intends for the body of Christ to do is to begin to see each other with heaven's perspective and to begin to affirm to each other using what God sees us to be. This will often be something that the person themselves have never imagined or believed before and may even find it very hard to accept at first. But it is not our role to hold up before people all of their problems and mistakes, but to hold up before them the exciting identity and potential that has been hiding inside for so long that God placed in there and that He sees very clearly. As we see and share with each other what God sees and wants to share with us, we suddenly have a whole new model to follow, a whole new perspective on who we really are and can grow into.
This is not wishful thinking or manipulative psychology. This is a principle of the mind that God designed into us. By beholding we become changed. When we behold only problems and faults we become more of those things and believe even more that this is the truth about us. We examine our feelings and fears and think that these reflect the truth about ourselves. But Wilder is saying that there is actually a higher truth than what we currently perceive and that perspective must be obtained from heaven's view of us. It is supposed to be the job of the church to obtain that view of each other and then to continually inspire them and remind them of who they really are.
When people malfunction, instead of holding up before them the problems and mistakes they are doing and making them think this is who they are, we are to remind them that they have forgotten who they really are and we are here to remind them of their true identity and worth. It is the job of the community to come alongside those who are malfunctioning and to affirm and remind them of their real identity and relate to them in love that they are forgetting who they really are and how to act like themselves. This affirmation of our true identity is the true method of heaven that is counterfeited by the condemnation that so often is used as attempts to shame people into changing their negative behaviors.
These are all things that I have been thinking about and pondering the past few days. I want to continue to not only learn these things but to practice them and incorporate them into the way I relate to everyone within my sphere of influence.