God’s Process in Reformation

images“See, today I appoint you over nations and kingdoms to uproot and tear down, to destroy and overthrow, to build and to plant.”  (Jeremiah 1:10)

A word the Lord has been speaking to me over the past few months is reformation. I kept hearing this in my spirit before I read that October 31st, this year, will be the 500th anniversary of the Protestant Reformation. To reform, in it’s most basic sense, means to form again. This brings to mind God’s words to His chosen people, Israel, as given through Jeremiah, the prophet. “Go down to the potter’s house, and there I will give you My message.” So I went down to the potter’s house, and I saw him working at the wheel. But the pot he was shaping from the clay was marred in his hands; so the potter formed it into another pot, shaping it as seemed best to him. Then the word of the LORD came to me. He said, “Can I not do with you, Israel, as this potter does?” declares the LORD. “Like clay in the hand of the potter, so are you in My hand, Israel.” (Jer. 18:2-6)

Our God is in the reformation business. The point of His reforms is to restore that which is fallen to its original state. However, He goes above and beyond even that, promising that the latter state will be more glorious than the former. (See Job 42:12; Hag. 2:9; Is. 65:17; Ezek. 36:11, etc.) The new heavens and earth will be far more glorious than the Garden of Eden. The last Adam, Christ, was far above the first one. The New Testament far exceeded the Old, in terms of the revelation of God. He restores, reforms, and remakes, not because the first was a mistake or incorrect, but because the first one had fulfilled its purpose. The first served His plan in its season, but the new season required something higher and greater.

God’s commission to His servant Jeremiah was to bring reformation to nations and kingdoms. His instructions give us much needed insight into the process required for such a God-sized task. The first step required four forms of destruction: to uproot, as in pulling something up by the roots; to pluck out, and expel; to root out. To tear down, as in to be pulled or broken down, cast down, and to be broken. To destroy, meaning, to die, to perish, do away with, and to blot out. And to overthrow, which means, to throw down, to break through, to break down, to be destroyed. After this process was complete, it was time to rebuild. This was a two-step process: first, to build, meaning, to rebuild, establish, cause to continue, with the idea of permanence. And finally, to plant, such as in a garden; to fix, to establish and fasten. It is interesting and worth noting that the destruction took twice as long, and was twice as hard, as the rebuilding.

I believe this is what God is doing in our nation, and in the American Church. Events are rapidly taking place that many believe to be destructive, not realizing, perhaps, that this is just the beginning of the process of reformation. We still have a long way to go before the rebuilding can begin. In the meantime, we must keep our eyes fixed on the One who loves to make things better than they were to begin with. We must trust that He sees and knows all; nothing is hidden from Him. He always knows what is best. He knows exactly what He is doing. We must pray for our leaders, and continue to pray for His kingdom to come and His will to be done in our nation, in the Church, and throughout this world, as it is in heaven. This is all a part of His plan, as He has said, “For the earth will be filled with the knowledge of the glory of the LORD, as the waters cover the sea.” (Hab. 2:14)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

A Whole Lot of Shaking Going On

earthquakeWe are living in exciting, but turbulent times. God is opening up new doors of opportunity for His people to embrace His call to be the salt and light of the world. Our nation is going through a major shaking. This is causing a ripple effect in the nations of the earth, many of which are going through their own upheavals. And, without a doubt, the Church, especially in our country, is also going through a shaking. There is more to come, for sure. Just as in the natural, a building’s foundations are often exposed and laid bare in an earthquake, so, in the spiritual, the Church’s underpinnings are quickly coming to light.

God’s purpose in allowing these convulsions is manifold. His primary interest is always the human heart. The heart is the foundation of our relationship with Him. He always knows the heart of every person, but we very often do not realize the condition of our own hearts. We easily deceive ourselves by claiming to believe certain things yet our actions prove otherwise. Sometimes, we are in need of a rude awakening, so God offends our minds to reveal what we truly believe in our hearts.

Scripture tells us no one but God is capable of knowing the heart (Acts 15:8), but Jesus also said that out of the overflow of the heart, the mouth speaks (Luke 6:45). We can gauge where our own hearts are if we will listen to the words we speak. The same goes for what we post on social media. It has been glaringly obvious that so many people, believers included, have a lot of anger, hatred, prejudice, rebellion, pride, and deception in their hearts. God is not ok with that, and if we truly see Him as our Lord and Savior, neither should we be. He is committed to showing us what He sees, not to shame us, but to set us free.

In addition, many of us have turned our focus from God as Savior, to trusting in a man, a political party, or certain ideology to solve our problems. No human being, knowledge, or system can fix what is wrong in our nation or the Church. If we don’t already know that, we are in the process of learning it now. Not only have we misplaced our allegiance, but we are allowing it to divide us from one another. We have taken on the offenses of our culture,   when we should be displaying the love and mercy of Jesus to those who don’t know Him. Many have displayed great passion when defending their particular political beliefs; do they exhibit the same or greater passion for their Lord?

I am reminded of this passage, “This is what the LORD Almighty says: ‘In a little while I will once more shake the heavens and the earth, the sea and the dry land. I will shake all nations, and what is desired by all nations will come, and I will fill this house with glory,’ says the LORD Almighty. ‘The silver is Mine and the gold is Mine,’ declares the LORD Almighty. ‘The glory of this present house will be greater than the glory of the former house,’ says the LORD Almighty. ‘And in this place I will grant peace,’ declares the LORD Almighty.”  God is shaking everything that can be shaken so that our foundations can be restored, both in our nation, and in His Church. The end result will be His glory, His kingdom, on earth, as it is in heaven, and a bride worthy of His Son.

 

 

 

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My child, I love to teach you as we walk together, side by side, day after day; and I will continue to for all of eternity. I AM training you to use the eyes of your heart more than your natural eyes. Follow the leading of My Spirit, and you will gain deeper clarity into the hidden truths of My Word. Think of it as a treasure hunt we play – there are hidden treasures to seek out and search for and as you uncover each one, you are filled with joy and delight!  I love to watch you ponder and wonder and meditate upon what I  show you – keep asking, My child, for it will be given to you;  keep seeking and you will find; keep knocking, for I will open doors of revelation to you that you cannot imagine right now.

It is My glory to conceal a matter and the glory of My sons and daughters to search it out. When you come with the curiosity of a small child, you will find all you are looking for and more on top of that! These are days of grace, and I have much grace for you in this process of learning and discovering the depths of who I AM and long to be for you – have fun with it, My love, for I take pleasure in teaching you and seeing you blossom and grow! You are Mine!

He Makes Beautiful Things Out of Nothing

He determined in advance that through Yeshua the Messiah we would be His sons – in keeping with His pleasure and purpose – so that we would bring Him praise commensurate with the glory of the grace He gave us through the Beloved One. (Eph. 1:5-6)

God decided before creation that He wanted a family; it was His purpose all along and it was His pleasure to follow through with His purpose even though He knew what our choice would be in choosing sin, and what it would cost Him because of that. Now that is love! He would have to accomplish His plan through Jesus – through His death, the shedding of His blood; through the cross… He decided we were worth it all!

God not only desires a family – His desire is for a family that gives praise to Him equal to the glory of the grace He has given us through Jesus. That praise, I believe, could be in two different forms – one being the adoration and worship we give Him in and through our daily lives as we surrender to His Lordship. The other form, I feel, could come through others who see Him in and through us, and give glory to His name because of our witness.

The grace He gives us has its own glory – it is glorious because of who He is and who we are – we were nothing and yet He gave us great honor and worth by choosing us and laying down His life for us. Now we are something – sons and daughters of the most High God, the King of all kings, and the Lord of all lords – and that is completely amazing and astonishing!

Now, we bestow that glory because of what He has done for us. He gave it to us, meaning it was a gift, and it was free to us; not to Him; and it is something we cannot earn, but simply receive with gratitude and awe.

Jesus is the Beloved One – beloved by the Father for who He is and what He accomplished. Beloved by us for the awesome demonstration of love He bestowed upon us and for us. He gave ALL that He could possibly give for love… He is worthy of all praise and honor and glory!