A READER FINDS THE "KEY"
I want to express my gratitude for Norman Grubb’s The Key to Everything and No Independent Self, and his book, The Spontaneous You. These have been absolutely instrumental in reviving my dry and thirsty soul, and also for firing up my pitifully waning spirit. As with so many fellow Christians, I on fall short of living the empowered victorious life and end up frustrated and defeated. Even though I’ve been reading The Intercessor, the light never really clicked on until (in the midst of a crisis), I came across The Key to Everything and also the othertwo aforementioned. Now that I’m understanding the vessel-container principle and the vine branch relationship, I’m beginning to experience the real secret to pesos and power meant for the Christian life–though at times still groping in the dark, I at least know where the light switch is… I just have to choose to turn it on… before I "psych" out (i.e. throw a fit, let the soul rule).
Thus I want to share with others what has helped "free up" my faith and caused me to actually have hope again. God Bless you.
Corpus Christie, TX
P.S. I am disappointed that The Spontaneous You is no longer in print–hopefully this will be in print soon (?)[We share your desire to see The Spontaneous You reprinted. We have recently obtained the publishing rights to several of Norman’s books and are in the process of putting them into print. Although The Spontaneous You is not among these, we are definitely interested in getting it reprinted, too. We will keep our readers posted as God brings these opportunities our way–the editors]
LITTLE WHITE LIES
The following letter, E-mailed from a friend in Kentucky, describes how God showed her His view of dishonesty–and how He got the glory from a situation once the sin is confessed.
I wanted to let you know what happened yesterday. I was studying our Bible study passages for next Sunday. We will talk about the Ninth Commandment: Thou shalt not lie. Well, part of the workbook stated that God didn’t see "little white lies" and at big lies any differently. It was scary to me, especially since little white lies are deemed OK by society. Therefore, I started to pray for expo-sure of this area in my life. I wanted to be His light, and if little white lies were not exposed, then they needed to be. Less than four hours later, the darkness was exposed. Actually, it wasn’t revealed to me until later in the day. But, the sin took place very quickly after the prayer. This is what happened.
Earlier in the weekend I made a hair appointment for Wednesday afternoon, forgetting about a late class on Wednesday. Well, on Saturday, I decided to tell the teacher that I had an appointment–implying doctor, dentist, etc. And so, I followed through with the plan on Monday morning. This probably would have been overlooked, but, God being the faithful God He is, allowed me to compound the sin more, so that I could learn more from it. Right after I told my teacher I had an appointment, I turned to Jan and said, "Really, it is just a hair appt, hee, hee." Now, do you get the picture? Jan gave me some heck. I laughed right along with her. Then when it hit me later in the day, I realized that not only had I sinned, but I was also darkness to Jan–a person that has stated to me in the past her nonbelief in Christians because they had been hypocritical to her. OK-ain’t God great. Oh, it was a very humbling moment. Talk about broken. Heart-broken from hurting God and being darkness to Jan.
So, I prayed and knew exactly what needed to be done. This was not something to be ignored. First thing Tuesday morning I called Jan–even woke her up. I didn’t want to call and hated the feelings, but I knew that I had 1 o clear up the shadows. I explained to her that I had become a Christian about a year ago and was learning about God and His rules and explained how the previous day’s behavior was sin and therefore, not pleasing to G. I explained some more and apologized. I also told her that I was going to the teacher to tell her the truth. I have been looking for my teacher all day and will catch her tomorrow if I have to.
So, yes, I sinned with a little "white lie." But God used it for His greater purpose. He showed me an area that needed exposing, but I was also able to be a light to Jan. Hah! ain’t He wonderful. Plus, I will get to talk to my teacher. Wonderful newsI Just wanted to let you both know what was going on. By the way–hated the feelings…hated admitting wrong–but knew I had to do it.
Love you both,
I loved your letter about the "little white lies" and how they really are sin to God and darkness to others. Your response, once you saw that behavior as sin, was so clearly that of Jesus Christ–admitting the lie was sin, seeing the consequences of that sin on others, hating it, and confessing it to God and to those affected.
One sentence gave me some concern: "God…allowed me to compound the sin more, so that I could learn from it." We do learn from our sins when we see them for what they are, confess them, and recognize that Christ only is sufficient for all our needs, like you did. But I want to be sure that you understand that God did not tempt you to sin in or for you to learn from sinning. The Bible says God tempts no man, but we are tempted when we are drawn away by our own lusts (James 1:13,14). Temptation is sufficient to teach us; we do not have to sin in or to learn a lesson.
In Romans, Paul reminds the readers that although God’s grace is greater than sin, God’s purpose for us and way in us is always righteousness: "But where sin increased, grace increased all the more…. What shall we say, then? Sha11 we go on sinning so that grace may increase? By no means! We died to sin; how can we live in it any longer?" (Romans 5:20b, 6:1-2) Then he points out that the whole purpose of our being crucified with Christ, buried with Him, and raised with Him is "in or that just as Christ was raised from the dead through the glory of the Father, we too may live a new life" (6:4). Just a small point in an otherwise "right-on" lever. Keep in touch!
LIVING BY FAITH, WHEN ALL LOOKS DARK
We would like to share an excerpt of a letter from someone suffering through
at heartbreak in their family–and finding in it an opportunity to see through the situation to God’s purposes. The author of the letter has asked to remain anonymous.
Dear Family in Boone:
I wanted to take the opportunity to thank each of you for showering me with compassion and love this past weekend as I dealt with the overwhelming news. This whole situation has been a nightmare, with the most intensive waves of feelings I have experienced for a long, long time. It has been incredibly painful to watch these young people experience the severe consequences of sin and be unable to do anything to lessen their burden. Add to that the agonizing disappointment and lingering concern for both of their spiritual well-being and you can imagine the magnitude of this new opportunity for faith.
I will be forever grateful for each of you taking me in and providing gentle comfort and straight truth just when I needed it. We have never been alone in this because each of you have shared your involvement so generously [with them]. Thanks to those of you who had been where I am–for offering your stories and wisdom. I enjoyed being with each of you for the weekend, participating in great fellow-ship and receiving such tremendous support and encouragement–I cannot express in words what it meant to me to have such a place to run to when it seemed as though my world had come crashing down around me.
This week at home has been most difficult, brimming with such intense emotions. I have felt as if I were the ball-bearing in a pinball machine, running into obstacles and being propelled out of control mercilessly day in and day out. some days are better than others, but throughout there has been a constant meter of tremendous sorrow and pain, watching these real-life consequences play out. Powerlessness has a new meaning for me now, with the realization that only God can set these circumstances straight.
As glum as it all looks at this moment, I have to remind myself that I live by faith and not by sight. I pleaded with God to do whatever it took to break my child, realizing he wasn’t really repentant over the sin that had been revealed. While be was sorry he had been caught, even relieved about having it out in the open, he was not broken and thus not really experiencing the fullness of God’s forgiveness and light. I believed that be is one of the fortunate ones–having had his sin revealed in such a serious way, receiving tremendous consequences as a result. How gracious of God to allow it to play out this way so that he will learn valuable lessons at an early age, impacting him in a life-changing way.
Thanks again for your understanding, support and concern for us…and for being there when we desperately needed you. We’ll stay in touch, and if anyone has any feedback they think might be helpful, please don’t hesitate to call or write!
More Articles from The Intercessor, Vol 13 No 1
- Editor’s Note
- Moments with Meryl
- God’s Stormtroopers
- A Look at a Book
- A Christmas Letter
- Safety in the Crossfire!
- Food for Body, Soul & Spirit at the NY Conference
- To Think About…
- Questions & Answers
- The Mailbox
- The Contract
- The Self Can’t Be Improved
- Tape Talk
- Excerpt from The Intercession of Rees Howells
- The Way of Release
- God’s Standards Have Not Changed: British Fall Conference
- Words to Live By
- One Lesson