Never doubt that Satan knows just precisely what approach to take when he intends to interfere in your walk with God or your calling. I like to believe that I stay pretty aware of my deficits and/ or vulnerable points.
It is not possible to see what is in our own blind spots.
In the “watchman community” there are folks as diverse as any other slice of humanity. Some are as consistent as sunrise. They are methodical, keep a strict schedule of intake and output, in terms of being in the word and keeping up to date on prophecy-related news, and posting their articles, blog posts, and videos.
I have always considered myself and this little blog to be something like one little relay wire in a very large, complex machine. Of course, even the smallest parts are necessary for the proper overall function of the whole. But I think I may be needing a repair or something.
My husband tells me I feel things on a deeper level than anyone he has ever known, that I care more, and am more real than most people even want to be. All of that makes me sound like such a better person than I am.
Many of the traits I have, do seem to puzzle others, though, I can’t deny that. I have been told more times than I could count, all my life, by multitudes of people, believers, and unbelievers alike, “there’s something different/special about you”, or variations of that. I never believed myself to be any more “special” than the next person. Unless we are talking about special, like “K-mart special” clearance, markdowns and such.
I did eventually concur about the “different” label, though, because I so often feel puzzled about the way most other people’s seem to work.
Whatever it is, it is not always pleasant for me to be “different” and I don’t even believe in that thing called “normal”!
Not everyone receives me the same way. I have learned that especially people who don’t love the Lord, or who are religious, but may or may not be saved by grace through faith alone, often react towards me in sort of an angry, defensive, or disdainful way, and often it is someone I just met, or am vaguely acquainted with, but haven’t been around enough that they really know me, nor I them.
Is it weird that a complete stranger can say something to me based on assumption alone, that can leave me momentarily fighting tears?
Nobody likes to be misjudged or misunderstood, but some people seem completely impervious to that kind of thing.
If someone reacts as if they are offended by something I say or do, I examine what I said or did. I always want to own and apologize to someone if I was in the wrong. But if I sincerely can’t figure out what offended the person, and in good faith, ask what they found offensive, it seems to often turn uglier.
I have had people literally tell me what I meant, as if they can look inside my heart and mind, and absolutely insist this conclusion they came to, is what was in my heart. That blows my mind! Communication is so important, yet it seems like very few people are really interested in understanding. I know younger generations have been taught that “what you think= what is real”. But I am flabbergasted to comprehend how many adults believe feelings and facts are one and the same. To quote Ben Shapiro, “facts don’t care about your feelings”. Facts are facts. But then all the way back in the 90’s Bill Clinton didn’t know what the meaning of “is” is.
It frustrating when someone utterly refuses to believe they misunderstood something, and would rather think the worst of you. It is especially hard to bear coming from someone I heretofore had believed I was close to, and who I thought knew me better than that.
Is that just pride on my part? I have had to work really hard at successful communication because of my level if hearing loss. Successful communication is achieved when the speaker conveys their message, and the receiver understands not just the words, but the exact meaning and message the speaker meant to convey. If nobody checks, how do I know the other party is indeed picking up whatI actually put down? But no one has the patience for clarification anymore.
Communication gets harder every day. Cell phones and e-mail have left our communications wide open for the Prince of the power of the air to scramble the message as it traverses the atmospheric continuum. And forget trying to clear up a misunderstanding via any electronic route. Apparently that is the equivalent of trying to fix a splotch on a painting. We are not linguistic versions of Bob Ross who can turn it into a happy little bird or tree.
The devil knows our vulnerabilities. In the ten years I have been a watchman-on-the-wall”, I have had sooo many of that sort of spiritual ambush. Occasions when someone either made an outright incorrect assumption about my character or motives or meaning, or simply refused to even allow any explanation or further discussion. You would think I would recognize when I am about to run up on another of that same sort of encounter, but it doesn’t really work that way. Unless I just choose to stop befriending anyone, stop being so “real” , and stop caring whether people misunderstand or take offense, there’s not much way to avoid it. And there have been many times I was tempted to do that. But I ultimately would choose to renew my resolve to keep being me, keep caring, keep being real, and keep serving in the ministry God gave me.
Until last time. Last time rather than one cheap shot, I got hit with several, from a handful if different sources all at the same time.
I am sure any of the subscribers to this blog who have been around several years, have noted the change from how prolific posts were at one time, to how it is now.
We left a dead church 5 years ago, one that was so committed to tradition that there was absolutely no room for the Holy Spirit to move, nor for members to contribute via their God-given gifts and callings. We have attended every church in our town that even seemed solid and grounded in scripture.
So in the very time God warned us not to neglect assembling with fellow believers, we haven’t had a church home. I listen to preaching online nearly every day, and I have been involved in different online communities, but it’s not the same as in-person fellowship. I know He says not to become “weary in well-doing”, that we shall reap in due time if we faint not. But what if a person is weary?
Despite my best intentions, I find myself struggling to fight the good fight and finish the race. Does it count if I crawl across the finish line?
I know we are very near the end. I just had hoped to finish stronger. I don’t feel like I am doing that.
The Philidelphian church “had a little strength” though. So maybe it is not necessarily bad. How do we reconcile His strength being made strong in our weakness, with the mandate to finish well?
What comes to mind is “Having done all, stand’ (of course with the armor on), but how about that first part of the passage on it’s own? Having done all, to still be standing, like a sturdy house standing alone after an earthquake or massive storm blows every structure around it to splinters. There’s broken glass, missing shutters and shingles. But after the onslaught, the house still stands.
Maybe I have listened to too many new-comers, who have only recently been called. Maybe God orchestrated it to be like the cavalry that surges in with fresh troops, so that the ones that have been at it a long time already can fall back to a bit of distance, get their wounds treated, while the new bunch, full of zeal and enthusiasm, take up the banner and keep the fight going. A lot of people will say there is never a time to let up, but does scripture indicate that?
Being out of church, while remaining separated from the world is no easy task. But it does provide space to truly examine what “church” has become, and what modern day church can do to a Christian that runs counter to what the Bible says God wants for us. To everything a season.
I do know that I invested many hours praying that God would prepare me for this time, whatever it will entail. I’m not counting on my understanding or my consistency or my degree if saturation. If ever there was a moment when “it’s all God” I think it is now. Focusing on measuring our own performance is ridiculous, and foolish, actually.
Stand and see the deliverance God works. Stand, and see the person you have prayed and believed God for the salvation of, as they come to faith, not because you prayed, not necessarily because you witnessed to them, but because God is who HE is, and you believed His promises.Having done all, stand.
I was one of those rare college students who did not get freaked out nervous on exam day. I always studied, but never felt like I knew the material well. When exam day came around, I knew that whether I had studied hard, or had hardly studied, it was too late then, to do more. I. E. the pressure was off. Now all 5hat was left was to see how much “stuck”. In the end, A, B, and C are all passing grades.
To withstand the evil day, or perilous times, is not so much reliant upon what you are doing today, as it is upon what you have invested before now,. Invested in prayer, invested in studying the Word, and prophecy, invested in serving God and serving others.
I say this for those like me who tend to overthink things, and who sometimes expect of yourself more than God is even expecting or asking All our efforts are imperfect at best. At some point we have to just remind ourselves that God is the God! God is the parent. God has set a fence up, so we can’t wander but so far off. He has put the bumpers up in the bowling lane. He hasn’t left it up to us to get things right. He jeeps a very close eye where we are at all times. It is such a relief when we learn to keep that in mind. He began a work in us, making us what He wants us to be, and He will finish it. Part of faith and growth is obedience, yes, but another part is yielding, submitting, ceasing, getting still, letting Him decide. Getting out of His way. Waiting to be guided.