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Abiding In the Silent Spaces

April 8, 2009

There are certain folks who see the daily flow of events and know that it’s not simply business as usual. Some of these folks are born of the Spirit while others are simply “observant.” Yet the vast majority see the days events as merely the methodical progression of things; complete with predictable upticks and downswings that persist in any age. This group currently makes up the vast majority of the population and sadly, I fear that the vast majority of professing christians also fall into this catagory.

II Peter 3:3-4 “Knowing this first, that there shall come in the last days scoffers, walking after their own lusts, And saying, Where is the promise of his coming? for since the fathers fell asleep, all things continue as they were from the beginning.”

For those who see the manifesting of a situation on seemingly every front that can only end in calamity, two questions are frequently asked.

( 1 ) WHAT”S GOING TO HAPPEN NEXT?” This is a hard question to answer as we all see “through a glass darkly.” We can study scripture and be assured of certain things that must take place (such as a son of perdition seducing the entire world to wonder after him. This will happen) but to say exactly how this situation will appear is difficult. To further complicate things, each of us adhere to beliefs which fail to paint a uniform picture of the events. For example, I’m thoroughly convinced from scripture that the rapture is a post-tribulation event and this influences the way that I approach prophecy. Nonetheless, the bible gives us a very accurate outline of the events which will preceed the glorious return of Jesus Christ.

( 2 ) “WHAT SHOULD I DO TO PREPARE?” This sounds like an equally hard question to answer but it’s actually quite easy. The answer depends upon whether the person asking has been born of the Spirit. If they don’t know Jesus, they need to repent of their sins and accept him as Savior “NOW!” For such a person, this is really the only thing that matters. It’s quite possible for a person to ponder extensively, the issues concerning the end times and then die in their sins. Without a doubt there are such individuals in eternity at this moment. So for such a one, we should always bring the conversation back to “if you died tonight, would you be in heaven or hell?” (I must confess that this isn’t always easy and I tend to let conversations go on longer than I should before stearing them to the real issue.) The remainder of this post is for the saints of God who understand the times in which we live.

There is a single answer to this question for those who are in Christ and wondering what to do. We absolutely must get close to the Lord Jesus. We must step outside the confines of religious performances, find time away from the influences of the world, the advice of the brethren, the neverending stream of “noise” and get before the Lord Jesus. We must let go of our agenda, put everything on the altar and diligently seek the presence of the Lord. There are a number of posts on this subject throughout this blog and none of them seem to adequately address this topic. And so here goes another one. The answer to this question may sound like an artful dodging of the issue, but it’s the only way to answer this question. The Lord has a different plan for each of us and there simply is no cookie cutter answer.

For many of us, finding quiet time can be a real challenge in and of itself. This is one reason that I like second shift. I arrive home at 3:30am and it’s like the whole world is asleep. Yet this is only half the battle. We then have the imagination that loves to wander, an outline in our mind of how we think things should go, and what have you. Usually the biggest obstacle to quiet time before the Lord is “us.” Even when we find it in the physical, the mind keeps racing and the enemy keeps striving to hinder. As such, the following familiar passage speaks of a very real battle that all of us must engage in.

II Corinthians 10:3-5 “For though we walk in the flesh, we do not war after the flesh: (For the weapons of our warfare are not carnal, but mighty through God to the pulling down of strongholds;) Casting down imaginations, and every high thing that exhalts itself against the knowledge of God, and bringing into captivity every thought to the obediance of Christ.”

To be in a place where we can truly hear from the Lord is critical in these hours and we should diligently seek such opportunities. Truly the Lord can speak to us anytime and for me, it tends to transpire when I’m completely not expecting it. (Like when driving on US 131 between Constantine and Three Rivers) But prayerful meditative time with the Lord Jesus is something that all of us need and few of us engage in as much as we should. The events coming to pass upon the earth should cause all of us to desire such moments with the Lord. This happens to me whenever such conversation arises. There’s no panic or fear; just a desire to come before the Lord Jesus and seek him.

I don’t know if I’m just strange or not, but in such moments, I often find myself not praying over the situation that brought about the urgency to find a quiet space. In fact, in many of these instances, I find myself praying and singing in the spirit far more than bringing forth certain issues. And those issues that are addressed with the understanding may be removed from the previous cogitations. In short, to just come before the Lord and seek him. To not bring with us a wish list (though there certainly are times where petitions are appropriate and I have a seemingly limitless list of names and issues) but to think upon the Lord Jesus and allow the Holy Ghost to navigate. These times of refreshing are imperative for the saints; especially as we approach the times which Jesus described as being more treacherous than any other time on earth. (Think about that)

A lot of saints are fearful of the end times and in their speech, one can detect a “steady-as-she-goes” mindset that places much emphasis on the continuances of this present situation, and a “We’re-not-going-to-be-here” outlook when prophetic events are mentioned. This is a sure fire way to be unprepared for the times just ahead. But if we draw closer to Jesus and really seek to abide in his presence, he will sustain us through the darkest night and the most contrary of circumstances. Richard Wurmbrand once wrote about the need for becoming deeply spiritual. (It’s in the link near the bottom of the previous post.) We do this, not when total chaos has been unleashed, but today; when we have enough leisure time to sit in front of a computer.

Well I have to get ready for work. Once again this issue has not been addressed adequately; perhaps because of the urgency of it. We absolutely must abide close to the Lord Jesus and we absolutely must ensure that he is our first love. Anything short of this will allow the seeds of compromise and betrayal to take root. I’ll close out with two passages that have been used repeatedly in blog, but are needful of a revisiting. I wish to all a blessed day in Jesus.

Isaiah 30:29 “Ye shall have a song, as in the night when a holy solemnity is kept; and gladness of heart, as when one goeth with a pipe to come into the mountain of the LORD, to the mighty One of Israel.” 
Jeremiah 33:2-3 “Thus saith the LORD the maker thereof, the LORD that formed it, to establish it; the LORD is his name; Call unto me, and I will answer thee, and show thee great and mighty things which thou knowest not.”
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6 comments

  1. Whether we’re seeing the end times now or not, the same preparation needs to be made, either way. Hard times can come for anyone at any time. I think we’re rather spoiled by easy life. Whether we live to see the end of the world, or just the end of our own lives, the effect is still the same. We’re still faced with the crisis, the end and the judgment.


  2. Hi Nonaeroterraqueous. This is so true; to be prepared spiritually for adversity regardless of the seasons. History is certainly filled with those who were called to glorify the Lord through martyrdom and our generation should not consider itself exempt. Complancy in times of plenty is a very deadly thing. Proverbs 30:9 comes to mind.

    Thanks for stopping by. It’s been hectic as of late, but I’ll swing by your blog when I get a moment. Thanks.

    Blessings always in Jesus name.


  3. You said it well: “We absolutely must abide close to the Lord Jesus and we absolutely must ensure that he is our first love. Anything short of this will allow the seeds of compromise and betrayal to take root.”
    When we think about this every day, it becomes ingraned into our lifestyle. Every time we have an interaction with another person, this attitude of ours is made known.
    In just casual conversations I’ve had people look at me funny and ask, “Are you a pastor?”
    Well you don’t have to be a pastor to make Jesus your first love.
    Loving Jesus and our brothers and sisters in Christ will show the world what is true. That alone will be enough to verify that Jesus did come and is for them and loves them.


  4. Hi Timbob,

    Just stopping by to wish you a blessed Easter. What a joy it is to know we serve a risen Saviour!

    Blessings in Christ,
    Carol


  5. Hi Jerald. Sorry for the late reply. As we abide close to Jesus, our speech and demeanor will certainly give us away. This is a good thing as we are to be a city set upon a hill. When people ask if you are a preacher from a casual discussion, we know that the Lord has done an incredible work.

    Thanks for stopping by. Please tell Marie that I said “hi.” Blessings always in Jesus name.


  6. Hi Carol. Easter was a blessed day, although some unexpected drama unfolded at home. It serves as a reminder of souls in the balance, and contests still in dispute. Priceless souls who can have eternal life by calling upon Jesus; the one who liveth, and was dead, and is alive for ever more. Amen.

    Thanks for stopping by. Blessings always in Jesus name.



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