Many of us are grieving over the death of our dear brother; David Wilkerson. Sad for us that he is gone, but blessed is he who I believe is with the Lord. The last of his kind in his generation has left us.
Recently, the last American soldier from world war one died. I wept that day seeing how the words in Ecclesiastes are so true:
One generation passes away, and another generation comes; but the earth abides forever. — Ecclesiastes 1:4 —
Generation after generation has died off from the beginning of time. Even the memory of them passes away at some point. Gone and forgotten.
Many of us have dealt with death in many ways. Watching loved ones pass on, leaving us to go through their things and trying to decide what to do with their belongings. Being a sentimental person most of my life, I have always clung to their stuff — feeling I would be dishonoring their memory if I got rid of any of it. But whether through poor health or perhaps God’s grace — I have learned — it was their stuff, their memories. Not mine. I was trying to keep it alive by clinging to it.
God began to deliver me from this yoke when a very precious sister in the Lord saw all my stuff in the basement a few years ago and kindly told me, “This is not healthy.” My eyes were opened and I began to get rid of the things I had accumulated over decades. I am still going through and getting rid of — stuff. What once were little treasures are nothing more than stuff taking up space in need of either occassional cleaning or forgotten in some bit of clutter. Either way, it is useless to me. In not having children, there is no one to hand things down to, so I give it to others. But, most people do not want my stuff. LOL!
When my mother passed away over a year ago, there were a lot of things to go through. I kept what I could use and slowly let go of what I could not. I took her clothes, cut them up and made rag blankets for my siblings and gave them to them at Christmas. That was one way I wanted to keep her memory alive for them.
I am convinced we are to let go of stuff and move on. For many of us, it will mean letting go of those things that have hindered us from going forward. I speak for myself, and perhaps I am the only one — but there has been much anger, bitterness, unforgiveness in me for some time. Some health related, some personal family issues, etc. No matter — we all have stuff that has stopped the flow of God’s Spirit in us.
I have an ancestor who survived Andersonville prison during the civil war. It is said that his family did not recognize him after being released. How many of us have been held bondage to the point where no one would ever guess we were Christians because of the chains that have held us; because of the treatment of our tormentors?
Sadly and ashamedly, I am one. I speak to you honestly. BUT, He (God) who began a good work in me, is faithful to complete it. If you are one of these wounded soldiers, He too is faithful to complete the good work He began in you.
I know how hard it is to forgive, to let go of bitterness and resentment. But we must. How do we do it? We don’t. We let God come in and break those areas that we have held unto. We let His Spirit comfort us when we have been hurt. But all too many times we try to heal our own wounds and we do it by building a fortress around ourselves. Before we know it, we become just like those who have treated us wrongly. Because we did not entrust God with our suffering and trusted in ourselves, we become just like our offenders.
The annointing is what breaks these yokes. Not how-to books, or prayer clothes, or any number of gimmicks within the apostate church. It is the annointing of an all powerful and loving God.
Couple weeks ago, I was stewing and simmering over something that had been done to me in the past few months. My heart was cold as ice and hard as stone. The Word of God (which had been hidden) rose up in my heart and said, “confess your sins to one another and be healed.” Not really wanting to — because I felt justified in my anger — but out of what was somewhat a defiant obediance, I called my sister in the Lord and began to spew out all that was in me. I held nothing back: the anger, the bitterness, the hurt, the rage, the pain. She listened patiently, not saying a word, no giving of advice. After letting me vent, she prayed. No shouting at devils to flee. None of that claiming and demanding anything. She simply talked to our Father on my behalf. It was then that I was able to see where I had been blind. I was able to feel what was right instead of the rage and hatred. The voices that had been lying to me telling me you have such a right to be angry, were gone! I was set free right on the spot. I went to bed that night with no thoughts of anger and unforgiveness for the first time since November.
Like Paul, I can say concerning all that I had been clinging to:
Brethren, I count not myself to have apprehended: but this one thing I do, forgetting those things which are behind, and reaching forth unto those things which are before, I press toward the mark for the prize of the high calling of God in Christ Jesus. — Phillipians 3: 13,14 —
What to do now? What does it look like to go on, forgetting those things which are behind? To actually reach forth unto the things before? I’m not certain of this. But like my ancestor walking out of Andersonville prison before me, the chains are off, I am no longer a prisoner. Yeah, I’m a little dusty and dirty. One usually is after being in bondage. But it is God who does the cleaning up and sets the crooked places straight.
Still, there is a banner to be picked up. I have one and you have one. What is your banner and who are you to carry it to? Is your banner one of proclaiming God’s mercy? Then pick it up and carry it to those who are in need of mercy! Is it one of warning, then take it to those who are perishing! Perhaps your banner is something what the world (and even the church) would call simple and not note-worthy: One of helping an elderly person make it to the restroom in a nursing home. No one but God sees that one. Or sitting with the sick all night long in a hospital, holding the hand of one who is dying. Oh what precious banners are these! Holding and offering the banner of eternal life to those nearing the end of their life. Is not love the greatest gift!
Whatever your banner, I do not think you can pick it up until you truly let go of the stuff you are clinging to. If you are hurting, cling to the One who loves your soul the greatest. He desires to see you free.
Let’s get rid of the stuff! Let’s help one another get rid of the stuff, restoring one another in a spirit of meekness lest we fall.
Just as generation after generation passes on, ours too will pass on. Yet, we are not of the forsaken and the unforgotten.
Lift up a banner on the high mountain, raise your voice to them; wave your hand, that they may enter the gates of the nobles. — Isaiah 13:2 —
Yes! There are many to still enter the gates!