September 30, 2016May the grace of profound conviction & repentance penetrate our souls and discover any areas we are holding back from Jesus. Precious family, I am really baring my soul to you in this message in the hopes that if you aren't all 100% given to the Lord, you will take that step today.
For those of you who haven't heard the previous three messages, my husband was dying suddenly before my very eyes three days ago and the Lord saved him at the last moment, but it rocked my world.
Today, I simply could not enter into worship this morning; this was weighing so heavily on my heart. Jesus began speaking to me, knowing that worship just wasn't possible this morning.
I've had time to think about why God the Father might say to me that "He has rescued me many times before, so I have had numerous warnings." This last one with Ezekiel beginning to die right before my very eyes, I hope and pray got the point across, permanently.
It's that black panther again...call him Pride, because he embodies all the qualities of Pride: avarice, self will, presumption, call it what you will - it all leads to the precipice of presumption. I recognize now the warnings I have had when Ezekiel would get life-threatening sick, it was always tied to something I bought that was not God's will.
You see He wants us to live very, very simply, more simply than most poor in this country, as a testimony to others that He is our all. We do have a staff to support, so that's where our donations go.
Well, the details aren't so important here, but I will say they were things that would contribute to our health and I thought were necessary. For those of you who are still young, you'll find out that when you age, you are almost consumed with improving your health. They were not superfluous things, but very practical. But in the last analysis, it wasn't God's will.
They were things we struggled in discernment with and should have known that if there is no peace, you just don't do it, no matter how you interpret your Rhemas. If you don't have peace, don't do it.
And it's not about cost, because this last item was a very inexpensive rubber ball chair, because of the pain I get in my hips from sitting at the computer 12-16 hours a day. It truly is the little foxes that spoil the vine.
Satan knows how we think..."Oh, It's little, it's not a big deal." Oh, yes, little IS a big deal. If we are not faithful in the little things, how can we be entrusted with the bigger ones??
And this last correction was the capstone on all the others, and in all honesty I don't see how even the God of endless patience could allow any more presumption, because He's gone way out of His way to warn me. I have to shape up, dear friends, because you are watching, and I am now accountable to the Body for my behavior. It just has to stop.
I suppose if you weren't watching ... and just God and Heaven were watching, I would be more tempted to give in. But you ARE watching, and because I love you all and want to be a better example of God's grace at work, I just can't let my vice go any further.
It has to stop here.
In our many years of ministry, we have seen the Lord open windows of opportunity for a soul to be converted, for them to give their poor, lack-luster lives into the hands of Jesus and allow Him to make it something beautiful. The elderly woman who was staying here had many years to convert, as we shared the kindness and love of Jesus with her. And there have been others who Jesus was calling to let go and embrace Him with all their hearts, to leave the world and live for Him alone.
Only God knows the number of chances a soul will get before the window of opportunity closes on them. Only He knows what is fair and just. He invests tremendous amounts of grace in each of us to bring us to Him and then to move us along from glory to glory. But if we refuse the invitations to go deeper with Him, He will not be mocked, He will close the window and let that soul slide back into their swamp with their self-will fully intact.
I am not saying that will be their last chance, but I have seen it enough to know that He brings us into the lives of people to influence them, and if they waver and don't die to their own lives, well, He moves on. That doesn't mean there won't be another chance for them, but I wouldn't want to be the soul who had Jesus tugging on my heartstrings saying, "There is more, give Me your whole heart. Leave the world. What I have for you is wonderful beyond, way beyond what you had planned for yourself. But you must leave the world to have it. Please...please come to Me and leave your old life behind."
Presumption whispers back, "Oh it's ok, you're a good person. You don't need to make a change in your life, it's going along just fine. Besides, if you change your mind, He'll be there later."
Oh, dear souls, that is presumption of the worst kind! You may not live to see the next invitation; you may not live through this year or the next if you don't make the change.
And so we come back around to my situation, I've been playing with God...sticking my toe near the line and saying, "Can I have this? It's just a little thing...and it is something I really need for my work? And usually it is.
And my next line of logic, "Lord, I work so hard for You, is that too much to ask? Look at all the times I do deny myself and say NO, you can't have that. No, you don't need that. No. No - because I want to honor You and You are trying to drown my very materialistic side, that likes nice useful things."
You see when I told you I am truly a very, very bad sinner, I was not exaggerating in the least. How many people would treat Jesus that way after He had done so much for them, given so much, protected so much, spoken so much and revealed His loving heart so much for almost 30 years? How many people would act this way with Him, bargaining with God? This truly is the product of a prideful, arrogant, presumptuous sinner.
I'm sharing this with you, because if you see or hear yourself in this, please change before it's too late. Please repent...as I am still repenting and broken hearted for letting Him down.
And for some of you, this is your LAST chance to give your life to Him, 100%. No more self, self dead and buried and born again...perhaps even born again, again. There is a tremendous grace unleashed in the Body of Christ right now, as we speak. The grace of a deeper conversion and a total re-make of our lives. And a whole-hearted yielding to God's plan for our lives.
And I'm going to take it. I want it desperately. I want to be totally dead to myself. I can't do it, but He can and I've given Him permission to do it anyway He has to.
What is your choice going to be?
"Though your heart is set on Heaven, the enemy can derail your course by cleverly manipulating you. He knows your faults and weaknesses so much better than you do. He knows where you stand and where you most surely will fall. He is extremely patient as he sets one trap at a time tat, unknown to you, will result in a mortal fall over a cliff. We are steering you away from the dangers of that precipice, where many have gone before."
And just so you know, when I say "we", He's talking about Father, Son and Holy Spirit, and that they work together.
At this point I had a vision of two ledges, or precipices, separated by about 12 feet. But below, it was 400 feet to the bottom. A huge chasm, with the bones of all the sheep that didn't make it.
"I know you are afraid."
And I just wanted to say there, THAT is an understatement. I've been pondering this for three days since Ezekiel almost died. I really am petrified that I will grow lukewarm again, sloppy and allow a desire to overtake me. Just one little button...'buy with one click.' And it's over. To say I'm afraid is truly an understatement.
Here He is referring to Francis of Assisi who always asked himself, 'Is this something I will be proud of when I face the final moments of my life and sister death comes to take me?' In this way he avoided doing anything that he would be ashamed of in the end. So he always used to say, "Ask Sister Death."Jesus continued, "She will never lead you astray. You have the ability to resist temptation. I am always coming to your aid and most of the time we do very well together.
"The reason we call this pride is because you think you know better. You think if you have something that I've put a check in your spirit about, it will make things better, you'll be able to serve Me better. But if I don't advise and approve of it, you're fooling yourself and feeding the lust of the flesh.
"And you failed to run it by your covering."
Yeah, this time I didn't ask Ezekiel first.
"Don't you see, My Precious Bride, I am saying these things to you for your own good.
"I have marvelous plans for you: things you have always wanted to do, dreams fulfilled. And you, like other souls around the world, have been maturing for years and now are at the point where I can use you. But you must be broken. You are still green in some areas and all of that could be resolved overnight if you just made the permanent decision to always submit to My wisdom. And when you know something is wrong...no matter what the counsel of others, no matter what the Bible Promises says, you know better.
"This inner place KNOWS better. You don't need a confirmation, you only need to obey at face value."
Jesus took a long breath and let out a sigh. "I know well what you want. I know your soul and spirit man are over-riding your flesh, but you must be on guard when you are weak. Remember: what I do not provide for you, is of no use to me. Keep that in the forefront of your mind because it will steer you onto the right course and prevent you from taking the trail that leads to the precipice of presumption and the failures of all who've gone before.
"Oh, Clare, please embrace what I am telling you with all your heart, Beloved."
I answered Him, "Jesus, I do. But I am so afraid of my flesh, in a moment of weakness."
"Stand convinced: if I don't provide it, you don't need it. If I am against it, it is poison.
"Do that as a wedding present for Me? Oh, that would make Me so happy. What a beautiful gift, you are turning an occasion of sin into a beautifully wrapped wedding present. You are wrapping it in the most exquisite paper of obedience, which is adorned with love, faith, trust, deference, and honor. More and more they declare who I Am in your life and that speaks volumes to the world and those who operate according to the world's value system and their flesh."
Lord, I am making that resolution right now.
Indeed, I would!
"Come now, My Bride. You are making this resolution before all your brothers and sisters. Don't scandalize them, rather declare, 'I can do all things through my Jesus, my Lord.'
"'Satan - you are not my lord. Flesh - you are not my lord. Intellect - you are not my lord. I renounce you all. Jesus is my Lord and He alone guides me. I renounce every other way. Lord, with your help I won't fall again.'
"You will do marvelously, Clare. I have every confidence in you, that next time, and every next time, you will choose Me over what you want or think would benefit you. Seal this with communion and I will grant you the grace to overcome yourself."
Thank You, Jesus. I believe in You.