The institutionalization of the Lord’s church, and of various ministries and Christian organizations, continues. Once an organization or group reaches a certain mass, it will tend toward institutionalization. I don’t think this happens at the same mass for every example, and it will likely vary, depending on a lot of different factors. However, once it begins to be institutionalized, it’s mission will be changed from what it was originally, to self-perpetuation. At this moment, if not before, it will also begin to calcify and lose it’s flexibility. It will respond in a natural way to threats, to silence or marginalize them, and also remove dissenting voices from it’s midst. This is often done with the proclamation that the group is more important than the individual, which has an element of truth, but is the wrong comparison. In Christ, we should be following Christ, not the group, or the individual. Systematically, Christ Jesus and His leadership fade into the background, and the original mission becomes the focus of marketing efforts, though it has likely been supplanted by a motive that the “organization” must continue. This is one of the reasons why the institutions of man are temporary, but what God does lasts forever.
More thoughts on this later….
For the last few years I have used Mondays to fast and pray. I try to set aside the first part of the day to focus on the Lord, perhaps reading the word, or praying specifically about something that is going on. Some weeks I have done well to stick closely to my plan, and other weeks I have had to miss it all together due to a travel schedule, something that has come up, or sometimes for a pure lack of discipline. Overall it has been pretty consistent though.
There are a lot of things that fasting does for us, but most of my early experiences with fasting were unsuccessful, and certainly unenlightened! A little understanding goes a long way when it comes to things like this, things of a spiritual nature that go against what the body is used to or finds pleasure in. Continue reading “This World Is Not Our Home”
Prophetic people get a sense of identity from the thought that they are seeing things that are coming. It makes for good feelings, and a sense of spiritual validity. This should not come as a surprise to us, and we shouldn't be alarmed by this reality, though it is probably omitted from most of the self-commentary that we put forth.
SO? What is coming?
Sadly (do you hear the word sadly a lot lately?), there is very little being said about what the Lord is preparing and embarking on anew. We do hear a fair amount about what is going on in the world around us, what the enemy is planning, and what will happen if we let things continue in the direction they are headed. Unfortunately, this is mostly human reasoning, which is not completely useless, as we know.
But who has a voice and perspective, a heavenly perspective, that affords one view to where the Lord is headed and what He is up to? Can you hear the crickets in the background? Seems a little quite on that front. This is a voice and a perspective we desperately need, and should be primarily devoted to. Continue reading “SO…. what is coming?”
Isaiah 52:4 – 6
This is what the Sovereign Lord says: “Long ago my people chose to live in Egypt. Now they are oppressed by Assyria. What is this?” asks the Lord. “Why are my people enslaved again? Those who rule them shout in exultation. My name is blasphemed all day long. But I will reveal my name to my people, and they will come to know its power. Then at last they will recognize that I am the one who speaks to them.”
I see something in this verse this morning. The name of God is blasphemed when we are ruled by other lords, enslaved by other masters. It is because His lordship, His leadership produces His likeness in us and makes us a reflection of Him. When we are ruled by other influences, motivations, when other things animate our lives, we are reflecting their “glory”, or our lives are a testimony to these other things. Continue reading “Proclaiming the Name”