On this day I experienced Jesus reviewing for me (and to share with you) many of the wrong past assumptions He had been revealing in me day to day as I listened to Him.
Robby, my precious child and brother, thank you for focusing on Me and listening to My voice.
For more than four decades you have sought to do all you could to know and serve Me, and you have appeared to yourself and others to be moving steadily in the right direction. Yet your thoughts have not been My thoughts—neither have your ways been My ways.
Now you have finally found the growing intimacy with Me that you (and I) were looking for all along, through simply:
- fixing your eyes on Me,
- resting and abiding in Me,
- listening to Me, and
- hearing and following Me.
As long as you keep your eyes on Me, our growing intimacy cannot and will not be taken from us. Now let Me protect you from slipping back by showing you clearly what has changed for you.
More than 40 years ago you opened the door of your heart to Me and dedicated your life to knowing and serving Me. Yet you have lived most of this past 40 years from popular but wrong assumptions:
• Wrong assumption: I want you to “figure out” from My word what I want of you.
You live in a day and culture in which reasoning has been widely exalted—in which much of the Church that bears My name has:
- sought to live according to what “makes sense” to you from Scripture, and
- to live according to biblical principles, formulas and rules
- rather than living by hearing My voice and being led by My Spirit.
Like so many, you have relied on your reasoning rather than My Spirit to guide you into all truth. You have fallen into the trap of the Israelites at Mount Sinai—who chose to live by My law rather than My invitation to hear My voice. You have fallen into the trap of the Pharisees—who searched the Scriptures but refused to come to Me.
• Wrong assumption: I want you to give your best effort to be and do all My word describes.
My Word presents many qualities and behaviors of My children, like being holy and being My witnesses. Like much of the Church that bears My name, you have assumed that I want you to live out these qualities and behaviors in your own strength and power—merely asking my assistance as you took responsibility for overcoming your every shortcoming. Like so many others who call Me Lord, you have poured yourself into disciplining yourself in areas where you are conscious of your weakness. You have bought into the “sin management” culture that is rampant in the Church that bears My name.
I have no interest in “helping you become better” through your disciplined efforts to be more loving, more faithful, more righteous, etc. I have no interest in you straining to do “what you can” for me. Apart from ME you can do nothing. What I desire is not your best efforts, but your deep intimacy with Me—ME living in you and through you so that it is no longer you who live, but Me living in you.
• Wrong assumption: I want you to “figure out” what I want you to do.
Like so much of the Church that bears My name, you have assumed that it was up to you to examine yourself and the world around you to figure out the good works I have prepared for you to walk in. Thus you have fixed your eyes on many things other than Me. Rather than focusing on Me—to hear and see and join Me in what I am saying and doing—you have focused on:
- examining yourself and others to see how you and they need to change,
- the threats and strategies of the enemy,
- the problems and needs of the world,
- the many opportunities for serving Me, and
- even on My word to discover principles to live by.
Yet focusing on these has kept you and many others from fixing your eyes on Me. I AM the author and finisher of your faith (Heb 12:2). And it is as you contemplate Me that you are transformed into My image with ever increasing glory (2 Cor 3:18). Open the eyes of your heart to see Me. Focus on Me rather than these other things—that you may abide in Me and My joy in you may be full. Then you will be My fruitful witness (Acts 1:8), and the rivers of living water in My Spirit will flow forth through you (John 7:38).
• Wrong assumption: I want to bless your efforts.
My word describes the abundant fruit and multiplied blessings that come through abiding in ME. You and so many others have sought hard to produce and receive these through your disciplined efforts. But I couldn’t allow more than modest blessing of your efforts or you would have drawn even further from Me.
Like so many others, you have fought disappointment over your limited fruit and blessings by resorting to a theology that says I am more interested in your faithful diligence and obedience than in your fruitfulness. What you have missed is My central desire for intimacy with you—not fruit from you. The fruit and blessing of your intimacy with Me will only come through My presence in you (Col 1:27)—Not your disciplined efforts.
You have sought to love and bless your household and the lost through your own self-disciplined efforts to do all you felt you “should,” and through pushing others to do the same. Your best efforts have NOT been experienced by those around you as love, but as you “doing your duty.” To Me, and to those around you who are hungry for love, your fulfillment of duty is repulsive rather than attractive.
Stop trying to do all you can for Me. Stop trying to “figure out” My will and how to love those around you. Stop “doing your best.” Die to yourself. Rest in Me. Abide in Me. Keep your eyes fixed on Me. Invite Me to live in you and love those around you—through you. Keep fixing your eyes on Me and inviting Me to abide in you and live through you—that others may see clearly that it is no longer you who live—offering Me your best efforts—but Me living in and through you (Gal 2:20).
As our intimacy grows, I indeed have many things for us to do together, but you will be doing them with Me rather than merely for Me. Indeed you are already seeing how I am opening doors for My life in you to have an impact far greater than your efforts have produced to date.
Don’t let this early fruit distract you. Keep your eyes on Me, listen to Me and follow Me. Continue writing down what You see and hear in the daily flow of thoughts, images and words you receive from Me as you focus on Me—that My word may abide in you for My Spirit to bring to your remembrance.