by Pam Clark
"Redemption does not come so easily, for no one can ever pay enough to live forever and never see the grave." Psalm 49:8 [New Living Translation]
Have you ever played games with someone who had to win, and if they didn't win, they were extremely upset? When you see that side of their personality, it can be a spooky thing, depending on how far that passion goes!
We know there is a healthy competitive spirit that challenges us to do our best. Most parents when they play games with their small children will let their children win to give them that feeling of accomplishment. Even teaching them how to lose through your example can be an important lesson for good mental and emotional health.
But a parent who would intimidate their child and overwhelm them in an unfair competition does a great disservice not only to that child but to all society. They breed bullies who defy the riches of our world. We need to understand what is the most important thing in life.
Death is cruel many times. In the hands of the enemy it is a weapon against us. I love these words of Jesus where He says, "The thief's (or the enemy's) purpose is to steal, kill and destroy. My purpose is to give life in all its fullness." [John 10:10 NLT]
Death in the hands of the Lord is a transition to a better place if that person is open to the Lord. Most innocent children are, but there is what is called "the age of accountability" - which can be different for different ones - where they are measured with the measures of life. And a lot of that measure is hearing internally the movings, if not the words, of the Holy Spirit inside of them.
The Lord wants to take those movings into words, and those words into a lifestyle, and that lifestyle into a relationship that is like a marriage with Him forever. But most people know even the best of marriages have their tribulations because the people have individual minds and wills. When they learn how to blend them, it can become joyful, but it requires some efforts.
While the power of the enemy is there to destroy things, the power of God is there to make things work and grow. But if we don't tap into the power of God, we can miss the better portions.
If we become so fascinated with the changes of evil and destruction, we can miss the greater glories of the good. When evil is "exciting" and good is mediocre, many will gravitate towards the stimulation. But it's better to be true than false, and there is no reason why we have to settle for anything less than the great and extraordinary. We just have to press into it.
I had a vision this morning of the Body of Christ like a car going down the road and it got a flat tire. The people got out, changed the tire and kept on going, but they failed to fix the spare tire. Later another flat was to occur, and they were stuck there, and had to not only live at that place but defend themselves as well. It was not the most ideal set of circumstances.
This society in many ways tends to have this all or nothing mentality. We find our "stars" or "leaders" and we decide competitively that this is the way to go. Then sometimes when they do let us down, we can be notorious for just dumping these people on the side of the road like discarded trash. But while they are players, we use them as weapons against what we perceive to be our enemy of rejection. Because everyone wants to be "cool" you know, and so whatever is "cool" at the current time is what we need and we will trash the rest. You know what I am talking about.
While it is fun to glory in the new, at the root of some of this is the spirit of rejection and if we do not reject rejection and its associated demons of death, we will fall for a deception that eventually hurts us, because the redemption of our souls is costly and precious, and we really do want to live forever. But for that to happen we really do have to pass the judgment test of God of relationship. And try as we might to avoid facing that issue, most of us do not get out of this world alive.
There is something in the human soul that knows how to place a value on things and people. Most children begin life by falling in love with their parents and caregivers. Most babies start off quite happy and they are so endearing to us, but babies grow up and they are required to take on responsibilities, even with of all their different personalities and ultimate skills or talents that become revealed.
The Body of Christ, or the Church, is going through a lot of transition right now. This is the day where not only is knowledge and travel greatly increased (Daniel 12:4), but the population globally is growing exponentially as well. There will be an anti-Christ (or anti-power of Life) spirit that tries to control it all, but those oppressions will fail by the power of the Living God. But we must learn to connect to that Spirit of Life and Power and learn how to overcome.
We are living in the conflict of these forces today and these exponential growths in society are things our individual lives will have to deal with. We must be on a quest for truth and it is good to pray for "the spirit of truth" in our lives. The Spirit of Truth will reveal to us the things that make for Life. Many of us have this temptation to have the "all or nothing" view that something or someone is absolute when truthfully, they may not be. They change, they fail, they die.
Jesus is an anchor because He is a God-Man who rose from the dead after a cruel brutal death and revealed Himself. He said He was God's Son and has proved it in many ways. If you don't know Him, you can ask Him to reveal Himself to you and come into your life. A process will begin that will do just that, because He is real. God is a Spirit, Jesus said, and they that worship Him must worship Him in Spirit and in Truth.
When we have been taught the basics of life and it works for a good season, sometimes we think the next thing we encounter will be good as well, but it doesn't always work out like that. This earthly life can have some negative encounters, sad to say. We must learn to separate the precious from the vile, or the good from the evil. And it is something we can learn to do, especially with the help of the Scriptures - the Holy Bible. The Bible is nice because the print doesn't change on the page like our views and opinions will.
We are that car going down the road as a people. And sometimes we can get a flat tire. That tire may be ours or it may be someone else's but as a Body we still need it. We may do fine for a while without repairing the tire, but we must believe in ourselves and others enough to realize all our parts are not just wanted but really are needed. We can't just take things for granted.
Revolutions are occuring all around the world today. Like the churning oceans are the peoples of the nations, seeking their expressions, and they don't always know how to do it, but something inside is telling them that there is more and they are seeking it. And they don't always play by the rules we think they should! Wars and rumors of wars are constantly in the news. It is a time to be aware and finely tuned. The chances are good that we can encounter some things we did not expect.
Finding a stocked bunker to hide in until the mayhem is over is not truly functional. It may be a temptation, but being blissfully unaware for a season is not going to deal with or overcome the problems this coming society is going to face. Because not only are you going to have to deal with whatever man comes up with, but also God. He has expectations from you!
As we travel and travail down this highway of life, we are going to need our supplies and our tools, and in the journey of life, that comes through people. There are forces that may be out of our control but they are not out of God's control, and as we learn to connect with Him, we can get a handle on what we need and our instructions on how to do it. God's people will have a good will for man in mind, and they will not compromise. The Body of Christ is a real living organism.
The Spirit of God is a Life-giving Source and He does have a Plan. We need His Life and Godliness for this Great Marriage of Eternal Life. Tokens are good, but function is better. Don't be afraid to engage in a good life through Him. You will not be disappointed. Strife and destruction in the Body is self defeating. You don't want to be stranded needing a part.