“Getting it right” has to do with getting Him right.
What I hope to do here is to take a step back to a question that was asked of me about 10 years ago now. Here it is in context:
I had just arrived late for a leaders gathering in Charlotte, NC. I couldn’t help but note a rather common, almost pleasant look on the faces of those already present – like a group of cats who had just shared a canary.
Before I could take me seat, the presiding leader asked, “Jay, what does the Church in this city look like?” I hesitated a second or two and then responded,
“It looks like the sum total of all of those who belong to Christ in this city, who know who are theirs in Him. Everything else is show business.”
I share this by way of further introduction to what I would like to blog about here. The kind of intimacy that we are looking for is not likely to be found until we accept Jesus as Lord of relationship, and we need to know and receive one another as from Him. What God calls church is not about “let’s make a deal” on a human level.
In a subsequent leaders meeting, but still back in that same time frame, I shared that,
“There are places in all of us where we have never been. We can’t get there alone because, if we did, it wouldn’t be the same place as it would be if somebody was there with us. The problem is that there is so much garbage between here and there, we are afraid to go there, either alone or with someone else. We need to have place to put the garbage. That is a place that only Christ can provide, and has provided. ‘Behold, The Lamb of God who takes away the ‘garbage’ of the world.’ He is not only our garbage man, but He wants to make garbage men out of us for the sake of those He has given us to love. We don’t have to take away the garbage of the whole world, but we are called to, and can, take away the garbage of those He has given us to love in Him.”
Having said that, which I know sounds very nice in theory, I must quickly add that in my experience, it only happens in the intimacy that is possible when He is Lord of relationship. Unless we discover who we are in Him, and in relationship to others in Him, we dare not get that close.
Jesus wants to give you, and has, in fact, promised to give you significant others in Him. Keep your eyes open, because you never know when He is going to give you the gift of another person. Opening the package can easily take a life time. Oh yes, the package can only be opened in the presence of God’s kind of love, the kind He demonstrated, on the day He said, “I love you,” when He and His expectations were nailed to the tree.
We need this revelation if we are ever going to love like God.
You talked about Garbage — this is a must see!!!
Father Samaan in Egypt…The Zabaleen, the garbage people…This video part 1 and 2 puts a face on what and who we are praying for. Notice the Church that was built with his vision out of a quarry and cave those seats 20,000 (beginning of Pt 2).
Living in this revelation – that the Lord is Lord of relationship and gives us people to learn to live in His Spirit with – has given me the greatest understanding of what God is after in His Church. Jesus only had those that the Father had given Him. He was accountable to His Father for them… He kept them all, except for the one doomed to perdition. Learning to live in relationship, in and by His Spirit, with those who He gives us – governed by His Spirit and all that pertains to Him – like it’s “for eternity” – gives us not only a place to rest, but also a place to get real and meaningful experience in the kind of intimacy He is after in Us – His Church. I don’t think people can learn how to be His Church outside of these intimate relationships. Outside of intimate relationships it seems that you just have doctrinal knowledge.
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“He wants to make garbage men out of us for the sake of those He has given us to love. We don’t have to take away the garbage of the whole world, but we are called to, and can, take away the garbage of those He has given us to love in Him.”
This is a part of the revealing one saint unto another, this revealing is as Jay stated in Love and without an agenda. In this very intimate and Loving relationship we are set free from the garbage we still carry around. I recently witness this as a precious saint and I had real time to talk face to face. The Lord expressed His pleasure in our conversations, and there was healing that transpired, and the Love we shared for each other deepened. I do believe this is what is eluded to here:
“Bear one another’s burdens, and so fulfill the law of Christ.”