Do you ever find that your Christian walk is frustrating? Are you trying so hard to be a Christian, yet finding yourself instead so confused and flip-flopping from feeling you are on top of it, only to find yourself failing over an over and want to crawl away in guilt or lash out in anger at the seeming futility of trying to make it work or ‘feel real’? You may even be feeling so sick of yourself and feeling a failure and don’t see the point of going on.
Perhaps you wish you could have more with the Lord? Are you even aware that there is in fact more than you have at this point in your life – far more? Have you sought advice from other Christians who are really just in the same boat as you are and they have no answers either – perhaps you have even sought answers from a pastor who listens, and then told you to pray about it – that it is a normal part of the walk, yet you leave him too with nothing real or concrete to hold onto, to give you a glimmer of hope of ever getting it right.
Perhaps people have suggested scriptures for you or books to read. The list is endless of advice you may receive.
Does Christianity really even work?
The problem is, that often those we seek advice from, do not know the answer themselves as they are going through what we are…or it does not bother them enough to find out the Truth and they are quite happy in their complacency and don’t want to get too serious – as someone recently shared with me, -”As long as I am just saved, that’s enough”.
All I share, both above and below this, is my own life-story and in no way do I stand over here and point at you. I know this difficulty, I know this disillusionment of walking in a frustrated ‘funk’, I know this suffering of the Lord where He allows us to reach beyond our grasp for Him where we feel so desperate that we would rather not have been born if “this is all Christianity is”.
In the flesh, it is a very frightening, but necessary place to be as you feel have no place to turn and you are getting no answers that can satisfy this gnawing, churning inside you, until you realise that the Lord Jesus is all and more sufficient to answer our cry. In the spirit, it is a place of utter rejoicing as nothing comes to us unless through Revelation.
I am the LORD your God,Who brought you out of the land of Egypt; Openyour mouth wide, and I will fill it.
The one thing above all that is needful to bring about any real life-changing as a Christian, is that you understand fully that as long as you are doing the fixing and changing and ‘making it real’, it’s not going to happen no matter what you try. You are going to fail over and over and over and God will allow it to take place until you get to the very end of yourself and you see or realise that you simply cannot bring it about.
This is His wonderful Revelation.
The Revelation comes first, then the working out of it in our lives. It does not stay in our heads only, but is worked out in the reality of the actuality of our lives. The day -to-day grind. The mundane, the boring, the ordinary. And it is tough. We are to lean on Him and look to Him for it all.
The Lord may allow you too, to get to a state of desperation where you feel you will break in two if He does not give you this reality with Him i.e. Him for Himself and not for anything He gives you or blesses you with. Everything else pails in the light of this where nothing and no-one else matters but Him. It is a road of unimaginable agony to walk, but if this is Who you really want, you will more than likely be taken down this road.
God will do it and does do it. Praise Him!!
This is the very life-changing that is required. The crucified life, the surrendered life, the relinquished life. Seeing life through a Christ consciousness, not a ‘self’ consciousness.
Open your mouth wide and ask the Lord to fill it. Have no preconceived ideas or notions of what He is going to do with you. Allow Him full reign and become a leaf in the wind of the Holy Spirit and allow Him to do with you as He will and blow you where He will. There is such freedom within this. Such security and such safety. As a child of the only True Living God, you are His treasure and He knows exactly what is needful for you to become the man or woman HE wants you to become. Trust Him to know best, regardless of the circumstances you might find yourself in and understand that all that is going on is part of what is needful for you to get where He needs you to be. Romans 8:28. It is all for His glory and our good.
I really trust that this may have reached a deep place in some struggling hearts who are yearning for more of Him and less of themselves. May the Lord bless you and show you what it is that is required of you, His way, and may you also know unequivocally, that He will equip you with all that you need.
All Glory to Our Lord!
THE RELINQUISHED LIFE
“I am crucified with Christ.” Galatians 2:20
No one is ever united with Jesus Christ until he is willing to relinquish not sin only, but his whole way of looking at things. To be born from above of the Spirit of God means that we must let go before we lay hold, and in the first stages it is the relinquishing of all pretence. What Our Lord wants us to present to Him is not goodness, nor honesty, nor endeavour, but real solid sin; that is all He can take from us. And what does He give in exchange for our sin? Real solid righteousness. But we must relinquish all pretence of being any thing, all claim of being worthy of God’s consideration.
Then the Spirit of God will show us what further there is to relinquish. There will have to be the relinquishing of my claim to my right to myself in every phase. Am I willing to relinquish my hold on all I possess, my hold on my affections, and on everything, and to be identified with the death of Jesus Christ?
There is always a sharp painful disillusionment to go through before we do relinquish. When a man really sees himself as the Lord sees him, it is not the abominable sins of the flesh that shock him, but the awful nature of the pride of his own heart against Jesus Christ. When he sees himself in the light of the Lord, the shame and the horror and the desperate conviction come home.
If you are up against the question of relinquishing, go through the crisis, relinquish all, and God will make you fit for all that He requires of you.
Oswald Chambers – My Utmost for His Highest -March 8