September 19, 2010

This post must begin with several links; the contents of which tie in with the topic at hand:

SEEK GOD AND LIVE (Stirring the Deep)





Each of these posts (I really missed being out here) highlight an aspect of the need for us to be in close to the Lord Jesus, walking in obediance, and keeping our hearts. Of placing our complete confidence in him and not conforming to the spirit of this age. Of discarding every thought, every agenda, and every behavior that’s contary, while being in a place where we discern the gentlest prompting of the Holy Spirit. Of being sober-minded and continuously seeking opportunities to share Jesus with a generation that’s rushing headlong into perdition. Sometimes the task before us seems so overwhelming.  I know beyond any doubt that I belong in the streets sharing Christ with whosoever will listen, and yet I’m the most unlikely person to be engaged in such a thing. I tend to talk fast, I’m kinda goofy looking, and oftentimes I wonder if anyone actually takes me seriously.   My home life is so chaotic and complicated that finding time to get into the streets is almost over the top. Everything in my life says that I don’t belong out there, and yet I cannot ignore that which is so embedded in my heart.

Jude 22-23 “And of some have compassion, making a difference.
And others save with fear, pulling them out of the fire; hating even the garments spotted by the flesh.” 

We know that the Lord is the one who gives increase and grants repentance to another. Our responsibility is to be obediant. Whenever we enter a public venue, we usually don’t know any of the people in that space, but God knows the number of hairs that are on each head. He knows the name and story of every soul. he knows every motive, every dream, every contention, and how many days each person has remaining in the valley of decisions.  He is our sufficiency as we are called to reach these priceless souls with the gospel of Jesus. We must, proclaim the truth with the full urgency that it demands; silencing the excuses, stepping outside of the comfort zone and “pulling them out of the fire.” It’s a call that’s in direct opposition to the tendancy of many these days to “imitate  the world” so to speak, in order to draw them in. Many  forgo a fervent seeking of the Lord in exchange for gimmicky campaigns that conform to the current stylings of the world in an effort to generate numbers. We place more confidence in a program than in preaching all the words of this life and allowing the Holy Spirit to confirm the word. “It pleased God by the foolishnsess of preaching to save them that believe.” He knows the hearts of all and grants the increase when we are obediant. We must drop our own “strategies” and be in a place to hear from on high.

 The way to prepare for such is obvious; fervent prayer and abiding in the word of God. A continuous fellowship with Jesus and being transformed into his image. When we do this, we’ll not have to work at being a city set on a hill; it will simply “be there.” We should strive to be so close to Jesus that when we occupy a space, the very atmosphere is altered. This was brought home to me last week. It was Thursday afternoon and I was operating the lappers at work. A monotonous job; but enjoyable in that it allows for much cogitation and prayer. Unexpectedly, I found myself so full of the joy of the Lord that I was all but carried away. It was indescribable and I wanted to just forget about making gears, climb to a high place in  the plant and preach. (Then return home and explain to Mrs timbob why I no longer had a job) It was consuming. The eternal picture was front and center while the sideshow (making gears) was seen for what it is. During this moment, this was dropped into my heart: 

“This is where you need to be when you are on the streets.”

I’m guilty of not always being in a proper place spiritually speaking when hitting the streets. Many ventures are carved out of a schedule that seems determined to put an end to these excursions. I’m not always properly prepared when reaching the venue of the moment. This needs to be addressed quickly because time is simply running out and everyone has a moment of departure. There are undoubtedly people whom I have met in the streets that are now in eternity. Was I walking in the Spirit when our paths crossed or was I going through the motions, with all of the proper street ministry verses waiting in the back of my mind? Did they see Jesus or just another religious guy peddling a  lifeless theology? We know that Gods word will not return void, but this is no excuse for carelessness on our part.  Eternities are being forged and we carry the words of life.

Such considerations bring with them a feeling of being completely inadequate and ill prepared. I could study the word of God from dawn till dusk and then pray from dusk till dawn, but it would not remove this feeling of inadequacy.  Over the months and years, I’ve often begun to bring to the Lord my laundry list of shortcomings, only to have the prayer cut off, almost before getting the first word out, with verse after verse about how he chooses the baser things to work his will. Even on those days where I return home feeling as though it would have been better had I not gone out at all. We are not privy to such information. I was just thinking about the first time that Moses stood before Pharaoh. Not only were the Hebrews not allowed to leave, they had to begin foraging for their own straw in order to make brick. Their responsibilities increased substantially, yet they had to produce the same amount of product. Initially, the encounter seemed to be a complete disaster, however, it set in motion all that was to transpire. A nation was judged, a people were liberated, and a promise was fulfilled. The next passage is familiar to most:

 II Corinthians 12:7-9 “And lest I should be exalted above measure through the abundance of the revelations, there was given to me a thorn in the flesh, the messenger of Satan to buffet me, lest I should be exalted above measure.
For this thing, I besought the lord thrice, that it might depart from me.
And he said unto me,
My grace is sufficient for thee: for my strength is made perfect in weekness. Most gladly therefore will I rather glory in infirmities, that the power of Christ may rest upon me.

Whatever this thing was, it was distracting enough that opon three occasions, Paul sought to be rid of it. But a twofold work was in play. This thorn was to keep Paul from unwittingly allowoing a seed of pride to take root while casuing him to place his complete confidence in Jesus.  Paul learned to actually take pleasure in such infirmities as the power of Christ did then rest upon him. (I Corinthians 1:29.) I imagine that few of us have reached a place that we view infirmities from such a perspective. But God sees the complete picture and operates accordingly.

As for now, I have to be going. I’m off work next week (a planned vacation) and on Monday I’m minded to take Matthew to Elkhart with me. (He doesn’t have school this coming Monday) I’ll not go into the downtown as Matthew comes unglued in arenas of much commotion. But we will visit Island park where a lot of tracts can be distributed and conversations generated. It may go smoothly or Matthew may decide to wade out into the river which would necessitate a call to the authorities for assistance. (Autistic children are full of surprises. Especially when they are bigger than you. lol) If Matthew can go along on such ventures, it will free up more time to be about the issues of eternal significance. As the urgency mounts, increasingly unconventional circumstances are manifesting. I’ll report later on how everything went. Until then, blessings always in Jesus name.    



  1. Reading your post is like a breath of fresh air to me brother. First, I am humbled when I read of your passion. Secondly I am humbled when I read of your street adventures , especially with your son. Feelings of inadequacy, I can certainly relate to that. Sometimes I despair of ever giving anything to the Lord………….bro Frank

  2. Good morning Frank. Thanks so much for stopping by. I really missed visiting your site while we were internet-less. It’s good to be back. Other than CR, this is the only place that I find fellowship with saints who are discerning of the times.

    Today will be the first time that matthew has been along on such a trip. I really don’t know what to expect, but we’ll find out in a couple of hours. With matthew, I know that a much bigger thing is in play than just a widely misunderstood condition. When all is revealed, we’ll be amazed at the whole of the events that we were patakers of.

    Thankls so much for stopping by. Please keep this household in prayer as spiritual battles are raging; despite the relative calm on the surface. I’ll keep your household in prayer also.

    Blessings always in Jesus name.

  3. I really dig the street adventures with your kid. Eye opening experience thats for sure.

  4. Hi Timbob

    Thank you for sharing these links…they are much needed at this time of the age.

    I had to have a little catch up while I was here…now that I finally have fast (I can’t believe it!) internet. Please know that I am so greatful for your blog and the thoughts and openness with which you share. (Funny, I don’t picture you as goofy looking lol!)

    “much cogitation and prayer. Unexpectedly, I found myself so full of the joy of the Lord” Herein lies the difference between “playing church” and being The Church. When the followers of Jesus were gathered in the upper room, they were praying with one accord. When hearts that are truly His be gathered together, open to the Lord, offering up praise and prayers to Him, there He is with them. The presence of the Lord cannot help but be with His people.

    May you truly go in the presence of the Lord when you witness in the street, and may those you come into contact with, not be able to deny that The Lord spoke to them that day. 🙂

    Praying for you and the ministry that you share.

    Bless you.

  5. Hi Paul. Thanks for taking time to stop by. Matthew didn’t wade into the river. (whew!) He stayed right with me and it was an awesome time. Now that I know he can be taken on such ventures (although I have to avoid highly congested areas when he’s present) I won’t be tied down on days when he doesn’t have school.

    Blessings always in Jesus name.

  6. Hi Five Peas. Indeed the presence of the Lord is all the difference between an authentic relationship and a form of godliness. At times both may look the same from the outside, but only the real thing will transform lives and bring deliverance. “Rivers of living water” is such a perfect explanation. Bubbling up from within and overflowing. I once heard a message preached on how we have to minister out of that overflow.

    Thanks so much for stopping by. Blessings always in Jesus name.

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