Tuesday, September 6, 2011

In the Desert

I am in the desert and it is not easy.

It's not what I'm used to.

I don't like it.


Desert Amazing Wallpaper 300x168 Desert Amazing Wallpaper

In the article, "No Fellowship, No Problem!" Chip Brogden encouraged me with these words,

The purpose of solitude in the spiritual desert is to get you to see that Jesus is Enough. You’re not going to die from lack of fellowship, but if you don’t learn that Jesus is Enough then spiritually speaking you’re dead already. He’s the One you need to be focused on – not starting a fellowship, not finding a home group, not making something happen with other people.

So, we've tried and tried to be part of a fellowship of believers and it has not worked out since we moved here.  Chip goes on to say,

There are times and seasons where He calls you to be alone and apart with Him. I’m not saying it will always be like that, but what if it is? What if He calls you to walk alone with Him for the rest of your life? Is Jesus enough for you?  I asked that question of a group of Christians once: is Jesus enough for you? Because most Christians do not believe this. They want Jesus, but they also want fellowship with others. Really, do you know what Christians want? Not fellowship with others. That sounds so spiritual. Really what they want is acceptance from other Christians. You go deep down and that’s what they want. They want to feel accepted by other Christians. Well, all I can tell you is that you’re setting yourself up for a huge disappointment. Eventually there will come a time when you will have to decide between the truth that God has revealed to you and the acceptance of other Christians. Now it hurts when you are not accepted by other Christians.

Yeah, I guess I want to be accepted by other Christians....and yeah, the disappointment is there, too.

But the bottom line is your spiritual life and walk with God does not depend upon the acceptance of other Christians. You might think it does, and it sure makes things easier, but it is not a condition of following Christ – making sure other Christians understand and accept you. The deeper you go into God the more unacceptable you will be to other Christians. ....Jesus is Lord and if you are His disciple then He accepts you whether the rest of the Christian population accepts you or not.

I AM accepted by my Father in Heaven.  He sees me and hears my heart cry!  He knows me for I am His!
He loves me just the way I am! 

“Oh brother Chip, I’m so lonely, I’ve been going to church every Sunday for twenty years and now we just sit home on Sunday and we feel so empty inside!” Well praise God, if that’s where God has you right now then thank God for it. Stop looking for other people to fill a void that only Christ can fill. You’ve been covering up that void with a lot of religious junk and He’s stripping all that away. He’s trying to build something in you, so let Him do it according to the times and seasons that He has appointed. Don’t rush through that process. Get comfortable with just you and God. My goodness, you don’t even know what it’s like to walk with God and just be hidden in Him because your whole life you’ve been following Him in a crowd, worshipping Him in a crowd, praying to Him in a crowd, learning about Him in a crowd.

It's time to get to know my Father, one on one without all the baggage.  Time to be quiet and restful and let Him fill the void and bring real peace. 

The Bible does not say “hold fast to the Body” or “hold fast to the members of the Body”, it says “hold fast to the Head.” The Bible does not say, “Seek ye first the fellowship of others”, but “seek ye first the Kingdom of God and His Righteousness, and all these things – including fellowship – will be added to you.” You learn to do that and the rest will take care of itself, in the time and manner that God sees fit.

I choose to trust Him in this area of my life.  ...To walk in faith that His timing is right and true.  ...That I don't need to force the fellowship but wait on Him to provide the best thing.  I am beginning to be excited about what God is going to teach me and reveal to me through His Word and prayer. 

So, I'm in the desert.  It's lonely.  It's quiet.  And that's OK.

Where are you, today?

To read the entire article mentioned above, click here.

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