(working title may change)
Last week my steps were ordered to the point I spent time with two people who were not Christians, but men and women of the world. We were similar age group as we shared over lunch, but one was involved in reading tarot cards and the other had new age ideas. Each shared their own lifestory of exploitation and oppression and how they had made choices and changes. It became apparent in discussion that I used to frequent the same nightclubs as one of them….It is often fun reminiscing of ones youth and I always have to be careful that I do not endorse that earlier way of ‘being’ as the thing I would now encourage. What was marvelous, was that I saw the open door… an opportunity. Letting them go first…without any judgment on their current activity , I shared, contrasted and punctuated the discussion with my own testimony of the saving power of Jesus salvation and how my life had changed from the early days.
Today, I am reading and reading the edited account of Charles
Spurgeon ‘ The power of Christ’s miracles’. I must have brought this book a couple of years ago, but to my shame, it is yet unread . Today I open its pages as I wait on the Lord to speak and I am extremely blessed as it also brings me back to the events of last week and the issue of judgement, mercy and saving grace.
I have just read a wonderful piece about the justification of the man in the New Testament picking up his bed and walking albeit against the judgement of the Pharisees and the social mores of the day. (See John 5:7 and onwards) . Here the Pharisees wilfully ignored what Christ had done for the lame man in healing him, but rather swooped down and majored on the fact that the Sabbath had been broken.
I spent many years go to nightclubs and there may be many who might question whether i am saved enough or changed enough or fit their own depiction of a Christian ….. It happens… !!! I have much more to say about the many years spent in 7th day church as a Christian (some 20 years) . Pious and sincere with my long skirts….. but not knowing the God of the Bible, not knowing Jesus, nor having a relationship with the Blessed Holy Spirit.
This had been the real reason I had started to reflect this morning as I wanted to write something this weekend that would encourage others. I know many are still trapped and going round in religious circles… so to speak. I wanted to say that in this new era, we take the opportunity to find out/ know why the Lord has mandated such a pause and interrupted our plans . To not slot into the same, old same old routine, but to question what he may be saying to us individually and collectively . I will write a fuller piece and article about this , but significantly my reading brought back the conversations I had last week with the unsaved two (shared above ) ie the reflection of past times where as Spurgeon so puts it so pointedly ‘ we wrought to the will of the gentiles’ , but where there was no lasting eternal value from the fruit.
The fruit we did have in the days of the Pink Coconut… (the name of the nightclub) ……would be ‘sour grapes that set our teeth on edge’ and where (as a result) we suffered weariness , loss and much damage and where we may have said and did things where we now are very much ashamed.
But thanks be to God for Jesus and Father’s salvation, his miracle working power and that he made provision on the cross having his eye on us throughout eternity. We don’t have to stay stuck in the attractions of pink coconuts…. man made illuminations and sin, but know that he has made a way where we walk out of past difficulties and made provision where we can be saved.
It is simple (and as I said to my listeners last week) Jesus does not force himself on anyone , salvation is a free gift . I speak to both the saved and the unsaved here when I say, we. don’t have to continue to eat the sour grapes or to stay stuck in sin, sickness , sorrow, manipulation or exploitation. He that makes men whole has commanded us to take up our bed and walk. Now whatever your personal situation or angst, Come out…!!!! and my God bless you.
Lord, help me to pray . I want to first give you thanks for your saving grace and power, your witness and testimony working through us. Lord I thank you because your desire is that all who seek you find you and that as a people or a generation, our teeth do not have to be set on edge, that we don’t have to eat the sour grapes , but to know that you have given us liberty through your word to receive your saving power and your eternal salvation.
Lord we ask that you remove all man made structures that prevent people hearing, getting up and out and towards you. Thank you for you first are the author and finisher of our faith . We also thank you for those who write and have left us a legacy such as the Apostles, Spurgeon and others and so that we can learn and be stirred and to do your works in this hour.
Speak to our individual hearts right now . Let nothing be wasted or done through strife or vain glory. As we seek to explain when we minister , You Lord do not force yourself on anyone, but you are gracious , long suffering and great.
Help us to number our days so that we can apply our hearts to wisdom. Three score years and 10 you have given us and by reason of strength you have extended that. Thank you for my years.
Your desire is that all who seek you find you and that no one dies without having the opportunity to hear you.
Lord look upon our lives, our work past times and practices . Help us to be the light that shine in even nightclub darkness . Help us to help others to see that there is light and to consider their ways.
These and other mercies I ask in your precious Name.
Evangelist Linda J UK