December 27, 2009
Philippians 3:10-11 “That I may know him, and the power of his resurrection, and the fellowship of his sufferings, being made conformable unto his death.
If by any means I might attain unto the resurrection of the dead.”
Ecclesiastes 1:18 “For in much wisdom is much grief: and he that increaseth in knowledge increaseth sorrow.”
In the midst of the ambient hecticity, it’s always a blessing to simply “pause to reflect.” To consider the unparalleled joy that results from knowing Jesus as Savior and Lord. The peace, the contentment, the indescribable liberty of no longer being a servant of sin, and the blessed hope of an eternity in his presence. We remember the former times, when we were without hope in the world, and we give praise unto God for the hour when we first believed. The moment when our sins were washed away by the precious blood of Jesus and our names recorded in heaven. As we grow in the Lord and are granted insight concerning the deep things of God, it becomes ever sweeter; even to the point that we may feel overwhelmed by the mercies of God who inhabits eternity, and yet loves us so much that he took upon himself the form of a servant and redeemed us with his own precious blood.
Over the past few weeks, as these truths were being visited, something else became a point of consideration. With a closeness to the Lord Jesus, there also comes a sorrow. Sorrow for the multitudes that know not the Lord and weeping for those who, despite every plea to consider their situation, continue to reject the words of life. Sorrow over the indescribable tragedy that’s unfolding all around us, every hour of every day. I’m convinced that it’s not possible to get in close to the Lord without this sorrow becoming more pronounced. If we love our neighbor as ourselves, the thought of those neighbors being lost for all of eternity should stir us to intervention and intercession. A godly sorrow as the understanding of this war leaps from the confines of our theology and becomes embedded into our heart. We begin to see the lost as Jesus sees them. It’s an anguish that will shake us from our comfort zone and lead us up to the front line, where these eternal ones hang in the balance.
When the Lord grants us understanding of this magnitude, (this is not to say that I’ve obtained; it’s merely an observation of a place that we must strive for) all remaining fragments of lusting, which had somehow slipped past every mountaintop rendezvous, unexpected joy spike, and increase in wisdom from on high, will meet their demise. In this place of revelation, priorities are set straight and the real issues emerge.  It’s as though we can almost hear the screams of hopelessness and torment that fill the habitations of the eternally lost. It’s no longer theology; it’s countless individual souls who once walked the earth. They loved, they dreamed, and they obtained a level of notoriety. Souls who could have been saved because their sins were paid for by the precious blood of Jesus. We begin to realize what has already transpired and how many folks are facing such a fate.
Suddenly our aspirations for personal legacy and loot become all but pointless. Our collection of trophies serve only to remind us of squandered time slots and victories which carry no weight in eternity. This understanding doesn’t bring with it euphoric feelings of “Hey; the Lord just revealed something to me.” It’s heartbreaking, it’s painful beyond description, it reminds us of how unworthy we are……and it’s necessary. Upon my first visit to our new church, Pastor Miller made the statement “if you don’t have any compassion for those who don’t know Jesus, I would seriously question your salvation.” This statement resulted in ponderings which brought forth a very troubling conclusion. Many professing saints seem to be completely absorbed by their life in this world and unconcerned for the lost and I began to wonder “am I lacking in concern for the lost?” The following post was written in the summer of 2009, but it makes a very important observation:
EVANGELIZING ME (Entrusted With) In the post, the lady explains how, even though she is born of the Spirit, she’s greatful when someone cares enough to inquire as to whether or not she’s born again.  
The following paragraph comes from BILL WEISS’ ‘ book “23 Minutes in Hell.” Here’s the backdrop. One evening while sleeping, Bill was taken into to hell for about 23 minutes. During the first portion of this visit, the Lord removed from him, the knowledge that he was a Christian. During that time, he experienced hell as an unsaved person would. The book is “sobering” to put it mildly. The following quote tells of when he was allowed to see the dropoff. (I remember hearing that, during his ministry, Lester Sumrall was likewise granted a view of this)
“I was instantly sobered as he allowed me to see a steady stream of people falling through a tunnel-one after the other, after the other, after the other-into an open cavern, into the terror that I had just escaped.
While I was watching this scene, Jesus allowed me to feel just a small amount of the sorrow He feels for His creation that is going to hell. His love is far beyond our capacity and is infinately greater than our love. I couldn’t stand feeling even a fraction of the anguish He feels.”
Mark 16:15-16 “And he said unto them, Go ye into all the world, and preach the gospel to every creature.
He that believeth and is baptized shall be saved; but he that believeth not shall be damned.”
Understanding the seriousness of this will bring forth sorrow, but it will also bring forth action. There’s another aspect to this sorrow that hasn’t been touched on and is the purpose for the passage from Philippians at the top of this post. I’m convinced that this is a form of fellowshipping with Christs sufferings. It will exceed suffering caused by physical hardship or persecution. When we truly begin to see the lost as the Lord sees them, it’s absolutely heart-wrenching. We could not handle the “whole” of this.
I must start wrapping this up as it’s well past 2:30 am. On December 24, I received a spiritual “shot across the bow” so to speak. Our daughter, Megan, and her friend Susan drove into a ditch less than a half-mile from the house. They were both ok, but this accident wasn’t the troubling part of the story. While we were all around the site where they had gone off the road, two guys, who are acquaintances of Megan and Susan, stopped by to offer assistance. (Their names are Jesse and Brian) Casual conversation, surrounding the current situation dominated and I never sought an opportunity to share the gospel. Finally we all departed the scene to our respective places. Less than an hour later, Susan called to tell us that Jesse and Brian had just slammed into a tree and came within inches of leaving this world. Truly the Lord had mercy upon these guys, upon their families, and upon me as well. Had either of them not survived, I truly think that I would have gone nutty.
The souls in our ambience are dependant upon us being faithful ambassadors for Christ. I’m still rattled by the transpirations of December 24. The Lord was letting me know that “THIS IS FOR REAL” and that missed opportunities; even the tiny ones that we may not think about, can have everlasting consequences if we allow them to pass. As we approach the new year, I’m determined to not allow such opportunities to slide by. “Lord Jesus; please open our eyes.” Another situation that’s underway: even as I write this, concerns Morgans fiance, Dustin. He’s in the hospital battling a serious Merca infection and we’ve not heard anything for several hours. Another priceless soul whom I’m keeping in prayer; not only for healing from this infection, but also that the Lord will get his attention.
Blessings always in Jesus name.
Jeremiah 13:17 “But if ye will not hear it, my soul shall weep in secret places for your pride; and mine eye shall weep sore, and run down with tears, because the LORD’S flock is carried away captive.”


  1. Hi Timbob,

    As I was reading your post, I recalled a saying I saw many years ago posted on the front wall of a church.

    “Let your heart be broken with the things that break the heart of God.”

    I don’t think we’ll ever know while on this earth the value of intercession and weeping for a lost soul. It’s something of which I definitely don’t do enough of and need to do more. This holiday season held a tinge of sadness for me too. A few days before Christmas, a pastor that we know experienced the tragic loss of his backslidden daughter. She was only 20 years old. My heart was so heavy for this family, and on Christmas morning, before we opened our gifts, we spent some time praying for them. Truly, we never know when any of us might breathe our last breath. If we could keep a constant awareness of just how fleeting life really is, I’m sure we’d all be doing a lot more praying and bold witnessing. It’s something God has been dealing with me about too. Thanks for this post. I will pray for Dustin too.


  2. Hi Carol. I can relate all too well to not spending enough time in intercession. I have a small notebook which I carry always wherein I write down names of souls hanging in the balance. It’s so huge that visiting each name seems impossible. And yet each one is an eternal tragedy in the making. If it were possible, one could spend every waking hour in intercession for these.

    Included on that list are Brian and Jesse; the two boys mentioned above. In all seriousness, if they had perished in that collision, I couldn’t have handled it. At last nights prayer meeting, our pastor mentioned a high school age girl who perished in a collision on the train tracks in Marcellus during the holidays. Her spiritual state is an unknown; along with that of the family.

    Ecclesiastes 7:1-5 has been on my heart much over the past couple of months. It needs to be made into a post, but placing it into words is not yet present. If it’s not done properly, it could result in much misunderstanding.

    Thanks so much for stopping by. May you and your family have a blessed new year.

    Blessings always in Jesus name.

  3. Timbob – you described it well . . .the mix of incredible joy in Christ and yet an incredible burden for those who don’t really know Him. I think you feel both when you know and experience His love. It took me years to really know His love but when it came into my life so did this burden for others. Thanks for sharing your heart.


  4. Hi Rachel. Thanks for understanding. It’s hard to explain how a person can be in the joy of the Lord and heartbroken at the same time. And yet it’s a reality as we draw close to Jesus and are made more aware of things as he sees them. The experience that Bill Weiss had; most of us could not handle that much revelation.

    Praise God who continues to transform us into his image and comforts us in all our tribulations.

    Wishing you and your family a blessed new year. Blessings always in Jesus name.

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