Peggy Noonan of the Wall Street Journal shared some interesting insights recently that really caught my attention. Think about the fact that, “In the past, when the world was in crisis there would be a ‘cluster of geniuses,’ men and women of the hour, that were in place and able to deal with the situations which had arisen, leading the world through the time of stress.
In the initial formation of America, there were men like Washington, Franklin, Madison, Hamilton, Monroe and others.
At the time of World War II, there was Franklin D. Roosevelt, Winston Churchill, and Charles De Gaulle, the President of France.
In the 1980’s we saw John Paul II, Ronald Reagan, Margaret Thatcher, Lech Walesa and Vaclav Havel lead the world through crisis.”
They were historic figures needed in historic circumstances.
We are living in such a time now.
Everything feels upended. The order that has governed things for the past 70 years, since World War II, is being swept away.
Terrorism and waves of immigration are transforming whole nations before our eyes.
We are a world at war whether we like the sound of that or not.
Dr. Sebastian Gorka, a Counter Terrorism Expert has said, “Everywhere we look, the world is on fire. The real war is about a war for the crowning of the caliphate. There is a call for strikes on soft targets, large gatherings of unarmed civilians. We are all on the front line of this war. It is not something happening somewhere else. You don’t have to be wearing a uniform or carrying a gun. You need to be aware of what is going on around you. Don’t be walking through life staring at your iPhone and texting.”
This is a different kind of war that has ever been fought before. The realities are at our doorstep. The increase in terror attacks since 2000 is startling. These attacks have not been limited to one nation or one continent. They range from Africa to Europe, from India to the United States.
Yes, it would seem that Gorka is correct. The world is on fire. And who are the leaders in place, at this time in history to lead the world through the current day crisis? I believe it is us! God’s people. The people God has been forming for Himself for this specific time in history.
I think of the messages Aglow International has been receiving over the past few years and I realize the many ways God has been preparing; speaking into our ministry. Even the Jewish man from Jerusalem and the Pakistani man in Hong Kong, with their message that ‘time is short and it is time to prepare the people’ was prophetically on target.
Asher Intrater, of Revive Israel has said, “We are not ready to face the demonic forces that we will be required to stand before.” We are in a time of preparation and separation, similar to the process that Moses went through.
Moses was going to be used to stand before an evil ruler of an evil world government. Pharaoh, the leader of the hour, was an evil man who worshipped snakes. He had no regard for Moses or his God. God was calling out His people from under that leadership and would use Moses to declare God’s intent before an ungodly leader, an ungodly power and force. Moses made the plagues happen. He ultimately spoke to the sea and caused the waters to part.
Today, we are up against another evil force. The rise of Radical Islamic Terrorism has forced us to move into a process, not unlike the process Moses went through, so that we might be used of God to stand in this hour and speak into the things that will be needed in the moment.
Islam is the greatest challenge the world and the church is facing today. Yet, we are often involved in the same sins as the world. We are being called to “come out and be separate.”
Isaiah had a revolutionary vision of the Holiness of God that caused him to cry out, “Woe is me for I am undone.”
“In the year that King Uzziah died, I saw the Lord sitting on a throne high and lifted up, and the train of His robe filled the temple. Above it stood seraphim…. And one cried to another and said: ‘Holy, holy, holy is the Lord of hosts; the whole earth is full of His glory!” And the posts of the door were shaken by the voice of him who cried out, and the house was filled with smoke. So I said, “Woe is me, for I am undone! Because I am a man of unclean lips, and I dwell in the midst of a people of unclean lips; for my eyes have seen the King, the Lord of hosts.’” Isaiah 6: 1-5 NKJV
He saw the Lord of Hosts. He saw the Holiness of God and it opened his eyes. It changed his perspective. He saw his own uncleanness.
God is separating us. He is cleansing us and turning us to Himself in deeper ways. There is a longing in our hearts for His Holiness and purity.
When I speak of Holiness, I am not talking about legalism, religious activity that brings self-righteousness or some kind of self-effort. We understand that the whole Christian life is a life lived spontaneously before the Lord…because the life of the Lord is within us. Truly, “it is no longer I who live, but Christ lives in me.” We trust that life.
On the other hand, I am talking about a quickened awareness and a deep heart longing that is drawing us near to God in precious ways by His Spirit that is bringing forth His likeness in ways not yet seen. Hudson Taylor, in his life’s story, “Spiritual Secret” said quite simply,
Christ received is Holiness begun
Christ cherished is Holiness Advancing
Christ counted upon as never absent is Holiness complete
Yes, it is true that when we received Christ, we received all.
Yet, there is a battle for Holiness. The battle is to equip us, make us ready for who we will stand before in the coming days. Even as Moses opened the waters, we are going to open the Heavens. We speak of miracles, signs and wonders. They will flow out of our lives easily as we continue to allow the Spirit of God to further cleanse us from the world. He is forming a people for Himself, a people for His glory, a people of Holiness and a people who will carry the power of His glory in our beings.
Even as Isaiah cried out about his own uncleanness, one of the seraphim took a live coal from the altar, “And he touched my mouth with it and said, ‘Behold, this has touched your lips; Your iniquity is taken away, And your sin is purged.’” Isaiah 6:6-7
There are things that can snag us, snag our minds, our attitudes, our conversations. I don’t think we realize how deeply infected with the world we are. We have become so used to the world around us that the atmosphere of disease has affected every part of our nature. We have learned to live unholy and have come to look at it as the natural way of life.
“A new channel must be cut through the desert of our minds to allow the sweet waters of truth to bring healing to our sickness.” - A.W. Tozer
Whatever we think of as belonging to God must be thought of as Holy.
My heart is bursting with longing to enter into this place with God. It is not a feeling of condemnation, but of exhilaration. God is cutting through the desert channel of my heart to pour more of Himself in. Will you join me?