Wednesday, July 23, 2008

What's going on, Lord?

Do you ever feel like Jeremiah? You know – gloomy, negative, whatever, the way you are when people say “Don’t be a Jeremiah.” I can feel like him, but more like he might have felt when he was young, when God told him there were great things for him to do. God has often told me that, and then soon after I have found myself in another situation where I felt like a child – clueless, inept, stupid. And then I have begun to question God’s calling on my life, and His purposes in the present moment.

Not only that, but there have been times when not only did I feel all of those things, but others were actively treating me accordingly, and, even worse, treating me as if I was following a path that was directly contrary to God’s will and call to holiness.

There was one such time many years ago when God set the record straight for me. I was being prayed over by some very zealous Christians whom I had been associated with in their community and had found the situation very destructive and not something I could continue to endure anymore. But I had chosen to remain in their church and try to keep fellowship with them. Somehow we ended up, once again, in a prayer session focused on me, and they actually had me on the floor, bent over, with my head curled into my arms and my knees all bent under me.

As their “prayers” continued over my body I withdrew deep into my spirit. God was speaking to me in an incredible way. He was saying that what they were praying was meaningless and irrelevant. What mattered was His calling on my life, and that I must listen to that, listen to His voice only, and ignore these other voices. He would tell me what I was to heed.

And then He sang this song to me, deep within my being. I had learned it several years before, but this time He sang it just for me and it was as if He was saying to me: “These words are for you, Meg, just as they were for Jeremiah when he felt so out of his depth. Don’t be afraid and don’t worry. My plans for your life are what matter, whatever other Christians think of you and whatever they say. What matters is what I say to you.”

This was the song. It is based on the call of Jeremiah from the first chapter of that book of the Old Testament.

Oh the Word of My Lord

Chorus:
O the word of my Lord
Deep within my being
O the word of my Lord
You have filled my mind

Verse 1
Before I formed you in the womb
I knew you through and through
I chose you to be mine
Before you left your mother's side
I called you my child
To be my sign


Verse 2
I know that you are very young
But I will make you strong
I'll fill you with My word
And you will travel through the land
Fulfilling My command
Which you have heard

Verse 3
And ev'rywhere you are to go
My hand will follow you
You will not be alone
In all the danger that you fear
You'll find Me very near
Your words My own

Verse 4
With all My strength
You will be filled
You will destroy and build
For that is My design
You will create and overthrow
Reap harvests I will sow
Your word is Mine

CCLI Song #740510
© 1978 Kevin Mayhew Ltd
Damian Lundy

After that evening I walked freer of the opinions of those Christians, and, while continuing to remain in their church, did not worry about what they thought of me. I continued on my own journey with the Lord, which led me to far greater exploits than they had imagined for me. That journey continues today, and, every so often, when I can get bogged down by worrying about what others think, or wondering about how what is happening in the present moment relates to the big picture God has shown me, I remember that evening on the floor, and God’s song deep within my heart.

I pray that you will be encouraged to hear God’s word for you alone, deep inside of you, today.

7 comments:

Belinda said...

Dear Meg,
I'm so glad you heard God's voice drowning out the other voices.

Thank you for this sweet message today. We all need to hear the voice of The Shepherd. His sheep hear his voice.

Meg said...

Dear Belinda -

I would like to thank you for your sweet voice of encouragement always as I keep on with this venture of writing for your team. I am sorry I don't yet have the time to engage more fully in commenting on others' posts, but I continue to rejoice in this opportunity and privilege, and that it is indeed a blessing to others.

MARILYN said...

You have touched on a topic of great interest to me, Meg, one I can't even put into words yet, but one that keeps coming to my attention..... It has to to do with the Body of Christ and how the individuals within a community of believers...what? what?...see? I can't yet put it into words, but your post touched on it! Hmmmmmmmm........ I guess the H.S. is still stirring that thought-stew and I'll have to be patient.

It seems like once things were confirmed in your spirit you were able to confidently walk among the brothers and sisters in that community again.

A question pops to mind: How can we tell when our ministry (our prayer ministry, in this case) IS truly ministry or it's something else?

Meg said...

Thanks for your thoughts, Marilyn. Would you like to continue the dialogue on email? You could ask Belinda for mine. What comes to mind for me is a small book on spiritual discernment by Francis Frangipane. When I find my copy I will send info about it to you, if you like, and you tell where to send it. He saw that so much of what is called discernment in the Body of Christ is actually just disguised judgment, and that true discernment can only come from love. I have thought a lot about this in my training to become a Christian therapist. Studies there talk about the "There you are" (in that box) mentality in the church, instead of the "Where are you?" approach, which is what good therapy does. The person remains in the driver seat, with God, and does not surrender his or her power to other Christians. I could go on and on. Thanks for your honesty. Hope you'll comment again.

Belinda, this makes me wonder...even if my thoughts and posts are helpful, are they truly "devotional"? Or do they need to be part of discussion forums? I'm not sure if I'm up for that...I like trying to keep them sort of musing..but they seem to be getting into other areas...I do hope this is okay. I know that is what God is leading me to do, but you all in your team need to sense how it fits with your aim. Perhaps this is a way to go...that you have several entries for each day, as you expand...there can always be one in the sort of style you do so well, and the others, with a gentle nudging walk in words..and there could be one that has this other style that I seem to be constrained to do...what thinkest thou? Chew upon that.


Thanks again for the opportunity..what a wonderful challenge too.

Belinda said...

Dear Meg,
I love your posts and don't feel is if they are out of sync, since part of the blessing of this blog is the variety of styles and voices. I think that people tune in wondering what will be here, and I hope that it is always a happy surprise.

As long as you are happy to be here you are enriching us with your thoughts and giving us much to "chew upon."

MARILYN said...

Thanks for the book recommendation, Meg. I'll look for it. It may stir into the theme that's been gathering strength in my thoughts.

If I have further questions, I'll channel them over to you privately. As more and more input 'happens' my way on a topic, I know it's probably something I'm going to do something with (probably writing-wise) down the road. It's fun when I see the pieces appearing and your post was one of those moments.

So it's not ME whose honesty should be credited, but yours. If you hadn't been frank about your feelings about that community of believers, it wouldn't have triggered the thoughts it did (in me).

Meg said...

Dear Belinda and Marilyn:

Thank you both for your affirming comments. I have needed them this morning and they are really encouraging me. I am so pleased to have these dialogues along with writing the posts. You will agree with me that dialogue was what was not happening in that relationship that resulted in the "prayer situation" I spoke of.