Larry Roques

Larry Roques

The Pastor's Journal of House of Joy Church

Am I self-consumed?...or is it just me?

 

This past weekend, my wife and co-pastor, Leslie and I had the rare opportunity to be in another city to attend some very special services with some truly amazing friends. As I attended, I began to experience what I call the "white wall syndrome". I began to see the refreshing of the Holy Spirit that I have not experienced in so very long in any services I attended. And insodoing, I began to see the shades of yellowing and grey in the world that encompassed me. I am learning that true revival carries with it a brokenness of spirit. It comes with a humility that is unreachable by mortal man and he is incapable of mimicking or replicating. The brokenness and the poor of spirit characteristics come from exposure to something greater than yourself and is amplified by uproarious worship which defies decibles and transcends talent.

A long time ago, I discovered that when man cannot explain something, his autoresponse is to condemn it and criticize it. God's Holy Spirit has been no exception as a formidable target. I have attended services where people jerked and jumped, they have twitched and screamed, they have leapt and laughed, and they have cried and travailed. But the one thing I have not seen is what the Bible calls "poor in spirit". Matthew 5:3 tells us that "blessed are the poor in Spirit for theirs is the Kingdom of Heaven. " I aways wondered about this scripture. I pondered it for hours trying to imagine living on that level for God. Poor in Spirit is what is better defined as true humility. True humility is not giving someone your seat or even submissively sitting under a great teacher. The first is an act of kindness and the second is simply wisdom. No, true humility is the greater becoming the greater by being the lesser...just like Jesus told us. It is the one being the servant to all. Humiliy and brokenness was best displayed by Stephen the disciple who was stoned to death as he gazed toward heaven while Saul of Tarsus held the cloaks of those who murdered Stephen. The Prophet Isaiah wrote in chapter 53, verse 7, that Jesus opened not his mouth unto death.

God touches those who will allow themselves to be touched.. He can knock you off your horse on the Damascus road, but you are going to have to come up from the fall saying, Lord. In this era of "pretty boy preachers" and "famous Felicia's", humlity is quickly escaping the ministry in favor of "rock stardom".  If we truly desire revival, you must enter into a place of brokenness and that requres surrender of everything you think you know. The wonderful news is that God is a God of fresh starts and do-overs. He does not make us do pennance, only repent for where we have been and move on.  I made some recent realizations concering my ministry here on earth according to the life of Jesus. 1. I am not here to be served, but to serve. 2. I  do not know anything. 3. God can and will equip me for everything he sets my hands and feet to do. and 4. I am not able, nor do I even remotely comprehend the depth or wiidth, or height of his love and mercy. The Bible itself tells us that His ways are unfathomable, unsearchable.

Self importance is the thief that steals greatness from your life. Paul tells us in Romans 12:3, "For I say, through the grace given to me, to everyone who is among you, not to think of himself more highly than he ought to think, but to think soberly, as God has dealt to each one a measure of faith." It goes on to explain that there are various gifts for various purposes in the body...and all have worth. When we internalize our worth and consider ourselves "the expert", we short circuit God's plan to bless our lives through using our gifts to bless others. When our lives point not to ourselves but to God, we can then enjoy fruitfulness that refreshes our soul and lifts our spirit! Your big shot world becomes painfully small when the only one who enjoys it is you. Spread the love...share the joy...give recklessly!

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