Rescued and Restored

What are stumbling blocks but stepping stones when one is transformed by the nurturing Light?

Meditation Thought: “There are those who rebel against the light, who are not acquainted with its ways, and do not stay in its paths.” (Job 24:13) “I am the light of the world: whoever follows me shall not walk in darkness, but shall have the light of life.” (John 8:12)

All who stumble in the dark, and who rebel against the dark, thus seeking the light, despite all obstacles, despite all errors in the direction of movement, shall find the light.

The light is difficult to be found only for a little while – only for the time necessary to: soften a hardened heart, tame a rebellious will, open up a closed mind, teach a foolish one wisdom, cleanse a sin-stained past, and to make real the promise within the conception of the one who seeks light. That is, to make the vision of light so intense that there is no doubt that the light exists and that the one who seeks it will find it.

And when the light dawns, when it is seen in reality, just as it was seen in the vision, then is a totally new life possible.

Consider the contrast of living in a totally dark prison – and of living on the mountaintop, where vistas are seen in every direction: where light enables abundant growth, and nourishes all living things – where light reveals the truth of all which is under it.

This contrast is the comparison of life in the flesh without the Light of the Spirit within and living with the Spirit within.

The one living in the dark confines of prison may, by the description of the vistas coming from the mountaintop, be able to conceive somewhat of the life lived on a mountaintop – but cannot truly understand nor feel the reality of that life.

Only as the prisoner is brave enough to grope for the key offered, and to grope for the lock, and to make effort to fit the key in the lock, to turn it, and to walk out of that confining place to blink in the light, and to adjust to it, can he begin to know experientially the total ‘new creature’ life in a ‘new’ environment (the mountaintop kingdom). The joy of realization of what he has left and what he is experiencing is almost unbearably sweet, almost unbelievably exciting, almost impossible to comprehend.

But the ‘almost’ is not the same as ‘definitely’. This is our cause for leaping in the ecstasy of thanksgiving! This is our power to live a new mountaintop life! This is the knowledge that the words which described the mountaintop life, and thus led us to find the key to release us to this life, were not exaggerated words, but even those words were not adequate to describe the truth, to describe the quality of the light, or the quality of life lived within that revealing light.

When we allow our minds, our emotions, our bodies, our spirits, to flow freely, to go freely over all this wonderful new terrain, we dance with delight of constant new discoveries of beauty, wisdom, truth – of love encountered along the way! Of Love accompanying us along the way.

What are stumbling blocks but stepping stones when the tiny emaciated prisoner is transformed by the nurturing Light into the grand, ‘filled-out’ figure: a strong, wise, willing, and eager new creature which is the reflection of the Creator of all he surveys and encounters, which is the container of the inherited wealth of the Creator, and which is the authority of the Creator expressed into the world covered by Light.

This ‘new creature’ did not evolve by chance, or by self – but by being transferred from prison to freedom.

One came to offer release – and the prisoner chose to seek a new place when the opportunity “knocked at the prison door”.

The ‘Rescuer’ comes in many forms – at many times – trying, always trying, to convince the prisoner that the escape from prison will lead to a better place.

There is no law which is broken when the prisoner ‘escapes’, no punishment for his leaving prison: the ‘law’ that sentenced him to prison was the confining of his spirit in a body which gives expression to his freedom of choice.

But the ‘law’ is his law: the ‘law’ is subject to his interpretation of that law: thus it cannot be ‘broken’ by him, thus causing him harm. It can only be perceived by him, and acted upon by him.

The moment he realizes that he has authority over the law, and he tells the Rescuer of the moment to give him the key to the prison door, and he takes authority over all who would try to tell him that their interpretation of the law is more authoritative than his, thus keeping him in prison – then not only is the prisoner rescued, he is restored to his rightful prominence as being one in authority.

He is not the highest authority on the mountaintop nor over the prison, but he is privileged, he is endowed with wisdom, he is endowed with authority, he is endowed with power, he is given knowledge. The key words are ‘endowed with ‘ and ‘given’: so long as he recognizes to whom he owes allegiance and all that is given to him, he is in a great position and leads a fulfilled, exciting and abundant life.

Change the Course of History

This is why 12 men could change the course of history…

“Not everyone who says to me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ will enter the kingdom of heaven, but only the one who does the will of my Father who is in heaven.” Matthew 7:21
“For the kingdom of God is not a matter of eating and drinking, but of righteousness, peace and joy in the Holy Spirit,” Romans 14:17

He who is righteous in attitude, who promotes peace, and who works in joy through the power of the Holy Spirit, shall enter into the kingdom of God who is in heaven and shall abide therein while at the same time abiding in the flesh. The time will come when flesh is shed and still there is abiding in the kingdom, but to abide in the kingdom it is not necessary to shed the flesh.

This is the message of the crucifixion – though it appears that the message is to reassure of life after shedding the body, its key message is that the Power which can bring a spirit to be expressed in bodily form is the same Power which also is able to reverse the process; that is, the body is to be expressed spiritually. This is the basis and meaning of all commandments which have been taught by Jesus.

Those who sought God before the life of Jesus were seeking for this knowledge, finding it to various degrees – but once Jesus lived in the flesh it became possible to know God intimately, and to dwell with Him personally while still in the body with full knowledge of this fact. This is why 12 men could change the course of history even when their Leader was not longer in the flesh – they had no earthly power: no political authority, no wealth, no ‘family connections’ – only the sure knowledge that God had come to dwell with them, to show His love, and to empower them to do His works. And they did, Despite all kinds of obstacles and persecutions, they followed their Jesus dwelling within them in the form of the Holy Spirit as surely and as devotedly as they had followed Him in the flesh.

And their example is clear to us. They not only wrought great change in history, but recorded the process of how they did it so clearly that we have no difficulty in understanding the process or imitating it, if we so chose.

There are ‘miracles’ changing the course of history wherever a loyal heart follows Christ, doing the Father’s works, expressing the Father’s love, carrying on in the tradition of those who knew Jesus in the flesh – and knew Him just as intimately in the Spirit.

A Tide, River, Iceberg and Prism

In our lives we cannot continually give treasures of ourselves without returning for periods of renewal to receive these treasures in order that we might share them.

Back in 1974, when Mom first started her journals, she had several ‘images’ in her prayer and meditation time that helped her see some of the ways God works in our lives:

Like a Tide: In our lives we cannot continually give treasures of ourselves without returning for periods of renewal to receive these treasures in order that we might share them. (Just as the tide goes out and collects shells, etc., then brings them to the shore.)

Like a River: Our lives alternate periods of a flurry of activity and periods of involvement in harassing situations, and if we will just flow along, accepting that as time moves on, we will come to a wide, shallow, peaceful place in the river of our lives, it all has perspective.

Like an Iceberg: The part of us that others see is only the part above the water. Underneath is what is supporting that above – and the stronger the underneath part, the more steady will be the top as it is buffeted by the wind (circumstances of our lives). The  lower part is strengthened through faith and obedience to God.

Like a Prism: As a prism focuses a beam of light into separate colors, so God sends His power through His believers (who act as the focusing prism) – using their prayers for others to send the solution for the particular need. In this concept it would seem logical that the more people praying for an individual the more ‘rays’ would be concentrated on the one in need, perhaps explaining the effectiveness of group prayer.

Fellow Travelers

Perhaps if more people thought in terms that we might travel the very path that others travel we would be more accepting of them as co-travelers and more eager to help – and be helped.

Meditation Thought: “A kind man benefits himself, but a cruel man brings trouble on himself.” (Proverbs 11:17)

Lord, is this the same thing as “what comes around goes around?” Somehow thinking in these terms really makes sense. So many things in our lives seem to travel in circles. Perhaps if more people thought in terms that we might travel the very path that others travel we would be more accepting of them as co-travelers and more eager to help – and be helped.

Maybe you made you made us with a ‘sixth sense’ that we move in circles, perhaps returning over and over into the same places, even though we might not recognize them as the same because their ‘season’ has given them a different look. Perhaps as we repeat our journey we are to grow more knowledgeable and able to travel more alertly and competently and appreciatively.

If so, help me cope better and better with each encounter, and Lord, I do have the desire to learn from my journey and to help others learn more about you and your will for their lives in addition to them becoming more aware of your reality.

Christ-like Characteristics

Meditation Thought: “But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control.” (Galatians 5:22-23)

“Love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control.” Have you seen any better description of the characteristics of Jesus Christ?

Have you seen any better list of what you would like both to receive and to give?

Ponder this thought.

Transforming Power

“My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” (2 Corinthians 12:8)
“Sow love wherever you find ground to sow it, cultivate it even if the ground is not perfect for growing. Just as you can grow plants by using the physical parts – the earth and seed, so you can ‘sow’ love and joy and peace and reap of harvest of more love and joy and peace. This is My will for you. This is My will for the world.”

Meditation Thought: “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” (2 Corinthians 12:8)

“Love, love, love – concentrate on the meaning of the word, and how to express that word as transformed into action, and thus results.

It is loving, transforming power that brings peace, joy, love, contentment and satisfaction. All people desire these, but many seek them by the wrong methods. Through the ages I have sought to reveal the truth about Myself, and many have perceived much of the truth. Those who know must share that knowledge as much as they are able – they are My family who realizes I am their creator – that the world was not created by ‘nothing’.

What you have learned through your science classes, through your Bible study, through your experiences and your belief that there is much more to creation than can be perceived through physical proofs is the Way the Truth and the Life that I desire for My beloved.

Sow love wherever you find ground to sow it, cultivate it even if the ground is not perfect for growing. Just as you can grow plants by using the physical parts – the earth and seed, so you can ‘sow’ love and joy and peace and reap of harvest of more love and joy and peace. This is My will for you. This is My will for the world.”

A Joyful Harvest Indeed!

Meditation Thought: “No human being can tame the tongue.” (James 3:8)

The tongue is tamed only by the Spirit – and an untamed tongue causes all kinds of mischief, even disasters.

The tongue is so powerful because it is the expression of the innermost thoughts. Our reactions to each other’s influence are more often a result of the working of the tongue than anything else. Thus the tongue holds the power to encourage, to commend, to give delight, to cause joy and laughter – or to condemn others to discouragement, guilt, resentment, bitterness.

Without the indwelling Spirit in control of our tongue, it can run on rampages, destroying everything in its path.

But the Spirit-controlled tongue produces the fruits of the Spirit – a joyful harvest indeed!