This is for the broken who are willing to go deep with God, deeper than ever. This is for those who have been consumed by anguish in their souls about their own sinfulness and cannot see how they should be deserving of any blessing from the Lord. Yes, this is for you who have been waiting on God’s promises and gone through much pain and suffering, only to come to a point of convicting exposure by the Holy Spirit – it is way more painful than anything happening on the outside because you realize how vile and evil your heart has been towards the Lord! You take one step of faith after another and the Spirit exposes the deepest thoughts of your heart, one step after another. ‘What the heck? What is happening?’ You do not want to acknowledge how corrupted your heart is because you are afraid, more afraid than ever. You are afraid to face the truth. You do not know how to pursue Him further. This is for you.
The Holy Week has started. This Friday, we commemorate the death of Jesus Christ on the cross. This Sunday we celebrate the resurrection of Jesus Christ. I see too many passing the cross to go straight to the empty tomb. I see many who chose to bear the cross as Jesus did but refuse to do so now. They are torn and conflicted because they do not understand that the Lord is pulling them deeper; He is calling them deeper into the Way of the Lamb but they are blinded by the excruciating pain in their flesh. The enemy is rampant, desperate to tear this hesitating believer out of the Way. Reject the cross, he says! But of course, not so directly lest he is exposed and you choose Jesus instead. No, he gives you temptations here and there, he keeps tormenting your soul. Take this job, take this chance, this is the love you have dreamed of! The Lord promised you something, so He must do this.
No, no, no! Jesus refuted the tongue of the enemy three times:
Then Jesus was led up by the Spirit into the wilderness to be tempted by the devil. And when He had fasted forty days and forty nights, afterward He was hungry. Now when the tempter came to Him, he said, “If You are the Son of God, command that these stones become bread.”
But He answered and said, “It is written, ‘Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that proceeds from the mouth of God.’ ”
Then the devil took Him up into the holy city, set Him on the pinnacle of the temple, and said to Him, “If You are the Son of God, throw Yourself down. For it is written: ‘He shall give His angels charge over you,’ and, ‘In their hands they shall bear you up, lest you dash your foot against a stone.’ ”
Jesus said to him, “It is written again, ‘You shall not test the Lord your God.’ ”
Again, the devil took Him up on an exceedingly high mountain, and showed Him all the kingdoms of the world and their glory. And he said to Him, “All these things I will give You if You will fall down and worship me.”
Then Jesus said to him, “Away with you, Satan! For it is written, ‘You shall worship the Lord your God, and Him only you shall serve.’ ”
Then the devil left Him, and behold, angels came and ministered to Him.Matthew 4:1-11
Look at how satan is tempting Jesus. It is excruciatingly painful for your flesh because the people who matter to you give you that look. They turn away from you. Your ministry is “not working”, you have no job, no money, nothing that the world would respect you for. No real family, no career, no glorious form. So it is tempting, for sure, to take that job, for example. All in all, that would fit in how God’s promise would be fulfilled, right? That is your thought. You also think it would be irresponsible, even foolish, not to take it. The reality is, however, that you have your own imaginations of how God should fulfill His promises and you got impatient. You do not realize it is Satan throwing those opportunities at you so that He can take you out of the wilderness that the Holy Spirit brought you in. Here, make this stone turn to bread. Do this, the Lord will protect you. Here, I will give you an audience for your ministry. Does that not feel good? Make them worship you!
Jesus! The only way out is Jesus! Look at Him, look at His life. Look at how humbly and lowly He walked on this earth as GOD incarnated. People said “Nazareth? Ew. How can something come out of Nazareth?” Yet the teachers marveled at the boy Jesus when He preached to them at the temple. Then he went home again and remained nameless there until He was thirty – in Nazareth, the despicable town! He had a rather insignificant job, taking care of his family, ministering to the seemingly insignificant people around him. What a grandeur it would have been, what an impact He could have made if He had already started His ministry with twelve! I cannot even wrap my mind around this, how is this possible? And what an honor if I am chosen to walk like this? It is by faith that I walk this road. Only Jesus in me is the real beauty of me. God made me fearfully and wonderfully, because I resemble Him in a way that I can walk like Jesus here on earth. It is a sanctification process. How wonderful when I am hidden and nameless and insignificant and decrease, because God knows and my reward is great in heaven! Oh, my reward is great when God is lifted high through my life!
Only the Son. Hide in God, just receive His love. Accept His goodness for your life that humble you. Because He took the cross, something we could not do at all until He came and lived it. He went to the cross with the hope of resurrection, He did only what the Father told Him to do. What an obedience, what a laid-down life! Do I think I can ever live this? I look at myself and I despair because I cannot. But I look at Jesus and tears run down my face because I know the One who is in me is greater than He who is in the world. Because I am grateful He would lead me like a shepherd down this valley of humility. Even in the darkest of those I am held and led by Him. He protects me, He surrounds me like a hedge of fire and leads me down to the tomb – to the tomb!
It is no longer I, but Christ who lives in me. I receive His love for me. I have no answers. That is gloriously perfect.
Thank you, Daddy. I trust you. That is all I have, Your Son. I lay down my will because I cannot even want to obey unless You help me. I’m here, take me. Mold me, do whatever You want! Only give me the eyes to see what You are doing, Holy Spirit. Only give me those eyes so that I can say thank you and praise the Lord! Oh, if you do that, I can know the Son deeper. Take me there.