It has finally happened. I knew when I started attending this little Baptist church that the spirit of Ichabod was upon it and that if I didn't get out, the quenching of the Holy Spirit would be inevitable. Now, I'm in one of the biggest struggles of my spiritual life. This is a great life's lesson for me. If you walk in the door and the service doesn't move you, neither do people worship nor praise, GET OUT!! That's not the church for me. I go to church to worship and praise God WITH others. Not for them. Not next to them. It's not supposed to be on one shoulder alone. I need them to hold me up and that way I can be strong to hold them up as well. We're supposed to hold each other up and give each other the refreshing and strength to go on in the service of the Lord. If that's not the design of the church then what is? Jesus preached on the hillsides. Paul preached in letters from prison. The building isn't the point. That's just a roof from the cold and rain while a man of God speaks. We can have church under a bridge. I'm extremely distressed. The thought of starting all over is crushing for me. I don't want to pick up and move to another church. That's not my style. I'm not a socialite. I like the stability and security of attending the same church. But this one is destroying me. It's not that they're doing something "to" me necessarily. It's what isn't happening. When the Holy Spirit comes to a preacher during preaching and he won't allow what needs to take place, he's quenching the Spirit. When he quenches the Spirit, the move doesn't happen and the room is thick with agenda. That to me, means that the preacher will continue speaking the words he planned. Instead of opening his mouth and letting God speak through him. That's just racket. He has become "a tinkling cymbal and a sounding brass" to me. I've been up here a year and can't remember one thing that man ever said. But 8 yrs ago, I can remember a preacher leaping from behind the pulpit and landing 5 steps down and in front of that pulpit under the move of the Holy Spirit. I, myself, have screamed at the top of my lungs and jumped from my seat and bounced around the aisle like a Mexican jumping bean under the move of the Holy Spirit. I had no control of myself. That's just one occasion wherein the Spirit took hold of me and others. You don't do what you want in those moments. No "self-respecting" person would behave like I did. I wouldn't EVER do that in public. But when the Holy Spirit moves you, you just move. That was then and this is now. I can't even sense a tear in this church. I need a major revival in my soul or I'm afraid of what's gonna happen to me. Why do I talk as if this is out of my control? Because in a way it is. This is the weakness of the flesh. This is the lack of strength. I can't pick me back up without God's help. I just can't. If I could, I would. It's like saying, "I can spoon feed myself without arms." He's the one holding me up and without Him, I starve. I need Him to indwell me, pick me up, revive me, renew, refresh, and set me back on a new path. I trust this will all change. I believe that it's more likely that He's doing a new thing than to simply believe that I'm a weak loser that can't just pick up and go. Since I've given God Lordship over my life, I have to trust that one day, I'll know what to do. I've got to hang in there. I've got to trust Him. But I can't lie and say I'm not a bit worried. I think part of my worry is that the church teaches "attendance is vital." But Jesus never said, "go to church" after healing people in the streets. Does anyone know what it is that He said more times than not? He said, "Go thy way, thy faith hath made thee whole." Where in that sentence do people get, "go to church"? To me, in my studies of God's word, it's just not in there. All of my hard labor in studying this concept of attending church by command hasn't yielded that truth. My studies have shown that people went to church to pay tithes, once a year. They went in observance of a Holy tradition, or in some verses it flat out tells me that they went "seeking the Lord." Nowhere in there does it say, "God commands thee to go to church faithfully or you're not considered right with Him." That's a lie. In fact, the Bible says, "not by might, but by my Spirit." I can't work for this. My butt in that pew doesn't mean anything to God accept that I'm working for something or seeking something. It doesn't put me in "good standing." I don't want people telling that to me. I know what the Bible says and that's where I'm getting my information. Sigh...anyway, I'm holding on and I feel better just getting it out. God bless me.
Thursday, December 22, 2011
After watching a PBS program about Jesus and who He was, I started reading some of the comments people posted. Some ranting and raving about how foolish the believer is to believe. Why do people think that we're foolish to believe in God? The number one answer is, "You can't see Him. How do you know He's real?" To that I would have to ask the question, "What is it that keeps a bus from running over you when you step out into the street?" or "How did that lion NOT kill you just then?" (I know, what kind of question is that!?!). But the point is, there are these circumstances happening to us in this life, and sometimes people survive these incredible deadly circumstances and we ask, "How?" A lost person will say, "fate," or "destiny," "happenstance." Just any number of explanations for how and why they weren't killed. But yet they'll question me if I say, "God! He saved me alive." We get this reaction, "GOD!?! How can you believe in something you can't see?" And yet, here we are, having a conversation wherein you believe in something you can't see as well, "Chance, it saved me alive." "Destiny, it saved me alive." "Fate, it saved me alive." I would have to challenge you on that. How can you believe that "chance" saved you? After all, you can't see it. How do you know it's real?
Posted by Kelline Pickett at 9:32 AM
Saturday, December 10, 2011
I was watching a special one night, I think it was "Beyond Belief" on ABC. This particular program was about people who had died and lived to tell what they experienced during their moment of "rest" (as I like to call it). Here's what impressed me and really made me believe that at least one of these people really experienced these things. Let me say this, there's a lot of people out there who write books about their death experience and are good writers. There's some phonies as well. I can tell the difference based on a couple of key facts. My writing today, is based on the story of a little boy. I don't know how old he was when he had his experience, but let's remember...he's just a child. He was playing basketball on an indoor court when he suffered an injury to his face. That injury opened his body to the attack of a flesh eating disease. During his struggle to survive, he died. During his death, he lived...with God. That's been told. Many people have told us that they've seen God. But this little boy is the first one that I believed and had no doubts of what he saw/experienced. Why? Because, I've been in the presence of the Holy Spirit many times and never once was I able to stop weeping with joy. I had more joy in those moments then any other in my entire life. I've experienced a lot of "sensations" in the natural but none ever flooded my soul with peace and joy. The Holy Spirit is that. So, I know that when someone talks of being with God there's usually an outward manifestation of that glory left behind. Weeping, laughing, glowing of the face, just sheer joy! This child, as he recounts his story, without ever making a facial expression, begins to weep. This is a 10 yr old boy (the age at the time he recounted the story). A normal, healthy, athletic, boy. Here's what most of us know about a 10 yr old. They don't cry unless necessary. They don't get mushy. They're in the beginning stages of asserting authority over their world as young men coming into puberty. Most are tough guys if possible. This young man was a normal 10 yr. old who loved throwing rocks on the water and playing basketball. A boy. A non-mushy boy. And yet, as he told the story, not a tear UNTIL he spoke of God and meeting him. He began to weep and I KNEW he had truly been in the presence of God and the glory was still upon him. Years later. I knew it was years before that he had the battle for his life. So, here he is, it's been years since he met God, and now he's even older, tougher, and less apt to cry in front of people..and he's weeping as he tells the whole world that he was in the presence of the Lord. There's just no way, in my mind, having raised two 10 yr .olds, that this young man with his athletic sense and true boy ways, is gonna cry about something like this in front of strangers, his mother, HIS DAD!! I know it's possible that he's just a sensitive child. I get that! But why didn't he cry about the other parts of the story? Like his mom's pain, or his face being messed up? He didn't even have expression when he began to weep in the first place. It wasn't an emotion he was expressing. It was the manifestation of a soul print...an abundance of joy left on his soul by the touch of God. It was an outward manifestation of the glory he had been within. The same joy began flooding my soul as well. I knew that somehow, I was in the presence of the Holy Spirit through this child and through the television. I expect readers to gasp in disbelief at how crazy that sounds. Well, there's no time, space, or walls with God. If human kind can create a wire that transfers sound and image, then God can traverse the same lines. It's not that crazy to think. So, it's been a year or two since I watched that program and I still see that little boy's precious face (albeit contorted and horribly scarred by the bacterial attack), his eyes filling with tears as he relives...not remembers....relives that experience with God. God uses these times and these people to remind us that He's there. It's like He (God) occasionally finds Himself someone He knows will tell the world what happened, so we can know too, that God is there!
Posted by Kelline Pickett at 9:48 AM
Tuesday, December 6, 2011
Recently I had a discussion about "once saved always saved" with a dear sister of the faith. This discussion really opened my heart to search to greater depths for this Truth. Although there's often 2 interpretations when 2 people discuss biblical things, one Truth can easily be found. I began in a mindset that we can lose our salvation. Well, true but false. Here's what I now believe based on scripture and not of my opinion. We can lose our salvation, but it's not because He takes it away. It's because we choose to leave it behind. I suppose one could call that "losing your salvation." It is something lost. So, first I found this little pamphlet at the doctor's office that explained how good God is and how he uses certain disciplinary measures to keep us in line and close to Him, like a good parent. The author of that pamphlet, a preacher, used Hebrews 12:5-6 to explain that God "chastens," "scourges," and "rebukes" (using His word [the Bible]) to discipline His children. And instead of just casting us off, He first uses these measures to keep us where we are supposed to be. But then, there's those who "fall away." This is the "losing of the salvation." Yes, it can be lost by us. God will hold us and love us, and discipline us, if necessary. But He won't force us to stay with Him and His beautiful family. It's hard to beleive that there's those out there who would walk away from Him but they do. In the event that a saved person chooses to give up the "good fight of faith" and walk away from it, that's it. Back into the world they go, lost and undone once again. How do I know? God told me through His word. "For it is impossible for those who were once enlightened, and have tasted of the heavenly gift, and were made partakers of the Holy Ghost, (v.5) and have tasted of the good word of God, and the powers of the world to come, (v.6) if they shall fall away, to renew them again unto repentance; seeing they crucify to themselves the son of God afresh, and put him to an open shame." Hebrews 6:4-6. See, however, it doesn't imply that God casts us off, but that WE cast Him off. I think this is where the church fails to teach the Truth. The churches I've been in don't teach this scripture, they teach St. John 10:28, "I give unto them eternal life; and they shall never perish neither shall any man pluck them out of my hand." I, too, have quoted this particular verse in reference to being saved always. But this is not for those who "fall away" or "walk away" or "return to the worldly ways." This verse is for those who are steadfast in the faith. Unwavering. Immovable. We shall never be plucked from His hand. But God's nature isn't to put a noose around our necks and hold us despite our protests to go free. He will, indeed, release you..immediately. Nobody wants to be with someone who doesn't want to be with them. God epitomizes this. Personally, I'm finally at rest about this subject. The Lord wanted me to know the Truth and He wasted no time in teaching me. He says to me, "Yes, I save you forever daughter. But if this gift isn't wanted by you, then I'll take it back as you offer, but it can't be returned to you once you've given it back." He's wise and all-knowing and who are we to question One such as He?
Posted by Kelline Pickett at 10:12 AM