16 March 2009

Great Doddington - Rebuilding the walls

What a wonderful meeting. It was so full of good things, isn't Yahshua great!

We began by chatting over coffee and biscuits, Rebuilding the walls of Jerusalemsharing things that had happened at home, at work, with friends and relatives. Life is filled with experiences of all kinds, some good, some not so good, some just plain hard and painful.

As the focus shifted from us towards the Lord, Glenn shared verse 9 from 1 Chronicles 22 where David explains that the Lord has told him, 'You will have a son who will be a man of peace and rest, and I will give him rest from all his enemies on every side. His name will be Solomon.' As Glenn reminded us, Solomon later spoke to the Queen of Sheba about natural life in the garden, he was interested in such details, a man of learning and wide learning, wise, quiet, peaceful. This was indeed his nature.

We thought about other leaders - like Moses who was not a powerful speaker, but he was obedient. Jim pointed out how he was told to throw down his staff and it became a snake, then he was to pick it up by the tail. How scary is that? Would you or I obey a command like that? That's faith and trust in action!

Wolfgang Simson has suggested that right now gentle, humble, peaceful leaders are being raised up in the church, not people of power or fame but quiet, modest, often unnoticed people.

Sherrelea shared some verses from Isaiah 30 that fitted right in, although they'd been on her heart before the previous conversation. 'In repentance and rest is your salvation, in quietness and trust is your strength ... Whether you turn to the right or to the left, your ears will hear a voice behind you, saying, "This is the way; walk in it."'

Chris mentioned that we are called to a relationship with the Almighty, not to any kind of religion. As Bruxy Cavey explains in his book 'The End of Religion', we pray, meet, and read the Bible not to become worthy of access to our Father, but because we already are close and want to know him ever better. Chris mentioned that someone had recently seen the truth of this in terms of worship music - we are not here to celebrate the musicians but to worship the King. Once this penny drops, our hearts and minds are flooded with new light and we see everything in a new way.

Jody told us that as a sixteen-year-old she had debated with some Jehovah's Witnesses and had been so very much on fire for the Lord. She still remembers the intensity of that enthusiasm, an enthusiasm the JWs couldn't match with their belief that salvation could only come through right doctrine, understanding, and practice.

Jim reminded us of the need to be satisfied with whatever the Lord has given us. He told us about the sadness and grief of a mother who lost her daughter in a road accident. By comparison, most of the things that trouble us in life seem insignificant. We mustn't let our circumstances spoil what we have in him. We are still on our way to eternity with him, come what may.

Barbara added that even when we're aware of him in our lives we are still sometimes pulled down by circumstances. Sherrelea shared how she and her daughter Jessie both suffer from asthma. She described one particular morning which had been a real nightmare and how low she had felt until she suddenly decided that should would choose to get on with life despite the circumstances. And she achieved so much that day! We can (and need to) put the word into action by standing on the truth. This is a choice we make.

Barbara also told us how her son's wedding had seemed to be spoiled by circumstances but she remembers standing at the window and saying to herself, 'I choose to not let this affect me'. The feelings of heaviness just vanished and she felt it was a holy moment. We can feel peace despite the storms around us. It was like the time when Jesus said to the disciples, 'Don't be afraid!'

Jody shared the thought that choice is so very important but sometimes we just forget that we have a choice. We have a friend fighting cancer, he has no choice in his battle and he will go wherever it takes him. But he (and we) need these moments of assurance and affirmation more often!

Chris read Ephesians 1:15-23 which seems to sum up so much of what we've shared. Sherrelea added that, 'Rejoice in the Lord always ... in everything present your requests to God' (Philippians 4:4) also fits in with it. What a wonderful meeting. It was so full of good things, isn't Yahshua great?

Barbara asked us to pray for her daughter and son-in-law, they are living apart but still good friends. At this point Sherrelea had a picture of a lorry with gravel which she saw as a promise that some work was going to be done. In the vision she prayed and two more people arrived to help and everything went faster as a result. But she also realised that there are good and bad ways of going about the work.

Jody pictured a beautiful silk robe or gown, it was exceedingly beautiful, richly patterned, and sewn with golden thread. But nobody felt good enough to put it on. And the Lord said, 'It's meant to be put on now! I have made it for you, put it on!' Chris then prophesied that the coat is Joseph's coat, and that it is also therefore Yahshua's coat. It's a coat of many-colours. Jacob gave such a coat to his most favoured son, Joseph. And Yahweh has given such a coat to his most favoured Son, Yahshua. This is the coat in Jody's vision. Christ dwells in each of us and the Almighty is calling us to put on his coat because we, too, are his children and his heirs. Just as Joseph suffered severely at the hands of his brothers, so must we expect to be criticised and disliked. But it was all for the purpose of gathering the harvest into the barns ready for the coming time of severe shortage. There is a harvest ready, the grain is in the fields. We need to ask the Lord of the harvest to send labourers and we need to get out there and be gathering.

Jody described how cement binds the stones together in a building. Jesus binds us together. We're all part of the structure – the cement is essential. Sherrelea referred to the rebuilding of the walls of Jerusalem in Nehemiah 3. Each group built a section, they were not professional masons but priests, goldsmiths, perfume makers, and others.

Glenn spoke about 'walking in the way'. The way forward isn't difficult, and it's not concealed. The word of the Lord is near you, it's in your mouth! We can take any salient scripture and utter it in each situation we face. The Lord says, 'My word will not fail, it won't come back back empty'. (In other words it won't come back without fulfilling its purpose.

He also explained about understanding disagreement and dissent. Jeremiah 3 mentions this in terms of Israel and Judah.

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