HIS MERCIES ARE NEW EVERY MORNING - Good Morning...
“Thus saith the LORD of hosts, Consider ye, and call for the mourning women, that they may come; and send for cunning [women], that they may come: And let them make haste, and take up a wailing for us, that our eyes may run down with tears, and our eyelids gush out with waters. For a voice of wailing is heard out of Zion, How are you spoiled! You are greatly confounded, because you have forsaken the land, because our dwellings have cast [us] out. Yet hear the word of the LORD, O ye women, and let your ear receive the word of his mouth, and teach your daughters wailing, and everyone her neighbour lamentation.”
In the 32nd chapter of Isaiah we are told of the consequences of complacency – being at ease, being careless…Rise up ye women that are at ease; hear your voice, ye careless daughters; give ear unto your speech. Many days and years shall ye be troubled, ye careless women…Tremble, ye women that are at ease; be troubled, ye careless women…”
And then ending with Jeremiah who says - “Hear ye the Word which the Lord speaketh unto you…”
This is a call for us to rise up, for us to be troubled, for us to hear, for us to rededicate. After 25 years of experiencing our children educated in public schools, I began experiencing our children being educated in a private Christian – Christ Centered – school. Our children’s experiences are quite different in various ways – some negative, but many obviously very positive. Our experiences are also different. I have always been involved in our children’s schools but here the involvement extends beyond the field trips and beyond the class parties. It extends to Mother Mentoring, mothers binding together and praying for each other. It extends to Mom’s In Touch groups, praying for our children.
In our weekly Mom’s In Touch prayer group in 2002, I introduced a new piece – I introduced sharing, and during one of our Mom’s In Touch times, a friend of mine shared that she has a house, which she and her family rent. They truly love that house although it’s really too small for their family, it’s not in a very good location, they’re paying too much rent for it, and the upkeep is terrible. But they are used to this house and this house is comfortable to them. THEY ARE USED TO IT AND IT’S COMFORTABLE TO THEM! We can be saved, sanctified, Holy Ghost filled and water baptized - and yet be at ease in Zion – at ease in that spiritual place where we find ourselves. The spiritual place where we are in, is really too small yet we remain within the 9 dots. Then, when God has more for us to do, and we remain in our 9 dots, He’s not able to get us going because the space is not large enough for the larger ministry that God does have for us. The location is not conducive to spiritual growth, the spiritual cost is too much, and the upkeep – to keep us at ease, and not ministering – is terrible. But we’re used to that place and it’s comfortable to us. That place of ease might be a physical place – like at the back of the church or before the TV instead of before the altar. Or that place might be a mental or a spiritual place – no prayer life, seldom reading of His Word, no consistent fasting, forgetting and even doing away with our HOLINESS roots. We say, ”it don’t take all that” but yes it does. It took it to make us and it takes it now to keep us! Regardless - if the spiritual place, our place in Him, is too small, then we can’t even think about extending to active ministry!
My friend went on to share that she loves to fellowship with family and friends and she began noticing people distancing themselves from her. Then one day, someone who really loved her, someone who really cared about her, someone who really had her best interests in mind and heart, told her that there was a stench in her clothing. Now, to say this and to know this will be received in love - that takes a true friend. We love to come together at church service, and meet and minister. We love to come together and greet, to come together and eat. to come together and fellowship! If we do as the bible says to do and forsake not to assemble ourselves together, then we can put ourselves in a position that a good friend, someone spiritual, someone watching for our souls, can tell us that the spiritual clothes we have on stink. Saved and no ministry will make us stink in God’s nostrils because we’re stale and good for nothing.
My friend continued to share that she decided to go to a professional – someone who would know what the problem is, where the problem is, and what needs to be done about the problem. My friend shared that she found out from the professional that her whole house had dry rot but she was used to the smell - she never noticed the steady downhill regression of that house. Spiritually, when we realize that there is a problem – maybe we realize it through a friend's words, a child’s words, a pastor's words, or the direct Word of God – when we realize that there is a problem – we need to go to the professional: the One who knows what the problem is, where the problem is, and what needs to be done about that problem. When we go to the Lord, He will show us our spiritual dry rot that is causing our spiritual life to go steadily downhill but we’re so used to the smell that we never noticed it. Spiritual growth never ends. It just continues on. And the place where God wants us, is not one place. If we stay in one place we, again, will have spiritual dry rot. But as we grow spiritually, we move from one fresh spiritual place in Him to the next.
Proverbs tells us-“Go to the ant, thou sluggard; consider her ways and be wise. Which having no guide, overseer, or ruler, provideth her meat in the summer, and gathereth her food in the harvest. How long wilt thou sleep, O sluggard? When wit thou arise out of sleep?”
We must get rid of all spiritual dry rot and renew that spiritual growth which God has for us. We must rededicate ourselves.
(Romans 12) “I beseech ye…”
I call you aside. I appeal to you in view of certain facts – the facts of sound doctrine, facts of the practical application of the gospel.
“I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that ye present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God, which is your reasonable service.”
This is just your reasonable service. This is just what you are supposed to do. This is just what you are supposed to give – yourself! We all belong to God and are to submit and present ourselves wholly and willingly to Him.
“And be not conformed to this world...”
Stop straddling the fence. Stop being wishy-washy. Stop being lukewarm. Stop living in spiritual dry rot.
“…but be ye transformed…”
Transfigured. Totally, supernaturally changed. You’ve moved to a clean house, not living around dry rot because of being at ease and comfortable where the situation placed you.
“Transformed by the renewing of your mind that ye may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God”
This is your duty, your responsibility, your reasonable service. Identify the spiritual unacceptability. Call it what it is - dry rot. Clean yourself up and out, and present yourself holy and acceptable unto God. If you have not presented yourself a living sacrifice, if you haven’t made your body holy, if you have not made yourself acceptable to God, if you have not rendered reasonable services, if you have not transformed from the world and instead conformed to the world - ...then, now is the time to rededicate yourself, now is the time to be dead to sin, now is the time to refuse to defile yourself, now is the time to yield to God, now is the time to glorify God – it is your reasonable service. You have a mighty work to do for the Lord, but you must first work on yourself. You must get out of spiritual dry rot, back in that spiritual place God’s desire.
Rise up ye that are at ease; Hear My voice, ye careless ones; Give ear unto My speech. Many days and years shall ye be troubled, ye careless one… Tremble, ye that are at ease; Be troubled, ye careless one,
Now is the time for us to get up and rededicate ourselves from spiritual dry rot to HOLINESS.
See you next Sunday morning, if the Lord says the same and delays His coming.