January 2016 NEWSLETTER
COME AWAY, MY BELOVED!
Here we are in January 2016! The flurry of activities of the last month are over and there is a huge sigh of relief that all that is over and we can move on. But, move on to what? For true seekers of God, what is the posture of our hearts to be at this time?
In our part of the world, winter is often looked upon with negativity as too cold, too much snow, difficulty in walking or travelling and more. Many try to escape these conditions by going on winter holidays to sunny destinations or become 'snowbirds' that go south for the entire winter. Winter is one of our seasons. Every season has a specific purpose and wonder. The element of winter that I want to highlight is that certain aspects of nature become dormant and go into a period of rest. Daylight hours shorten. I see this as an invitation to cease from busyness and rest, not only physically but refocus our minds and hearts.
Jesus' invitation shouts out to our generation:
Come to Me, all you who labor and are heavy-laden and overburdened, and I will cause you to rest. [I will ease and relieve and refresh your souls.] He knew the importance of time away with His Father, hence He would often spend the night or early mornings communing with Him. That communion (koinonia) was vital to His life. We discover the deep love, longing and fellowship between Father and Son that demonstrates how we are created to also walk with our Father; not working FOR God but living OUT OF HIM in deep, meaningful relationship. It's that simple!
How can something so simple be so difficult to do? Our Beloved is saying to us, "Rise up, my love, my fair one, and come away." We have been so influenced and governed by the world system, that to remove ourselves even for a short time, can be very difficult. Let us recognize the enemy's strategy and answer our Beloved's call.
BE STILL! To do this we must have a strong resolve that is propelled by the sound of our Beloved's voice. David had it. One thing have I asked of the Lord, that will I seek, inquire for, and [insistently] require... I live on our family farm and the Lord has asked me to consecrate it to Him as a prayer retreat. As people come, I have watched the struggle of some as they try to disconnect from their usual routines, to settle their minds and hearts to focus on waiting on God. This struggle is one I am very familiar with also. I recently heard someone say, "We've been taught how to do 'something' but we've never been taught how to do 'NOTHING'." He waits for us to respond, to come to just BE with Him. He has prepared a place for us and that place is IN His heart. The Amplified Bible defines peace as: perfect well-being, all necessary good, all spiritual prosperity, and freedom from fears and agitating passions and moral conflicts. Sound like something we need in our world?
Time spent in His Presence is necessary to heal and cleanse us from the putrid corruption in this world that sticks to us and defiles. This is not an option for anyone wanting to walk as an overcomer in this generation. He said, apart from Me [cut off from vital union with Me] you can do nothing. Some of the benefits of this union with Jesus will be: our love for Him grows; His purposes are conceived in us; we become transparent before Him and He can show us what is in our hearts; a deep cleansing takes place as our hearts are tenderized; the mindsets of this world are removed; we receive the burden of His heart and we become captivated by His beauty from fresh revelation of who He is. This does not come by flipping a switch. It is a process of transformation that happens as we intentionally, purposefully, earnestly desire to be united as one with Jesus and come away.
And you will find rest (relief and ease and refreshment and recreation and blessed quiet) for your souls.
There is a place of quiet rest...Near to the heart of God.....
Let us determine to fulfill the desire of the Lord's heart and...COME AWAY!
Have a blessed Winter!