WHAT DOES JESUS WANT?by Pam Clark
We live in confusing times with world events and technology racing.
We are overloaded frequently with options and information and pressures.
Often the choices and advice on what we "should do" overwhelms us. If we
don't find a core within us on which to build upon, we can succomb to the forces
that seek to manipulate us into doing what "someone else" wants us to do and
miss building our own life.
But at the same time, more is going on than survival of the fittest.
More is going on than "king of the mountain." More is going on than
competition as to who is better than whom. There must be a life found deep
on the inside of us.
Opinions run rampant, including our own. Our own advice is not always
the best and our own ideas can even be wrong. Along with knowledge and
reasoning, we carry intuition but we still cannot define our own "truth."
Today's society presents "situation ethics" as a science. It is a
rationale of exalting what is right for the moment. Granted, some things
are right for the time, but there has to be more to life than living for the
All these ideas are consistently being given forth for life, along
with the one that the ends justify the means. But what is life in
Christ? It is the knowing of a Person, but even then, we must be wary that
someone's experiential knowledge does not supercede what is to be the truth for
What works? I think in just asking the question, we are on to a good
start. Believing in God means that you go beyond just believing in your
self and even beyond believing in the others around you. There is a system
going on, a system of life and there are counter forces to that.
Because some have been rebuked by these counterforces in such a forceful
way, they can lose heart in life and seek to align with what seems to be the
"winning power" and miss it, because death and destruction will never build life
nor offer protection.
Just because someone hit you to maintain their order does not mean that
hitting and hurting is the positive and redemptive way to maintain order.
How healthy can it be when everyone is walking around with bruises and broken
limbs in the name of maintaining order? Something is wrong with that
picture! It doesn't have to be that way!
There are extreme measures for extreme times but are we truly looking to
live in the extremes day in and day out? There are some who are called to
professions and who enjoy sports because that is an area of the extreme where
they can survive and maintain an certain manner of life. We think of the
extreme with fire-fighters and policemen who battle the edge to maintain
healthy order. Most sports heros are there because they love the
sport. The money, while nice, is a symbol of their success, not just the
There are things that mark us for who we are. They are expressions of
our life. If we cannot express who we are, we feel frustrated. If we
don't know who we are, we feel even more frustrated. But there is
something good in feeling that there must be more because it is a sign of
life. It is a sign that not everything within has been explored and
realized. But at the same time, we must have healthy boundaries.
When God brought the children of Israel out of Egypt, it was a great
deliverance for a people who had become greatly oppressed. The way of
life had degenerated to such a degree that the quality of life was no longer
there. Individualism had no value and was constantly at the brutal mercy
of the will of another taskmaster who had no regard for fellow human life but
saw it as a servant to their means of pleasure. It was in this
setting God stepped in to show Himself supernatural on their behalf.
There can be a time in life when you have become so devalued that
you not only need a Saviour, but a supernatural Deliverer. Often we will
try to take matters into our own hands but if we don't have wisdom, we can make
I was at a Christian ladies conference this weekend and heard many stories
about hard experiences. They were all testimonies of how God overcame the
circumstances of very difficult times. Sometimes I marveled at the depth
of the battles, and was even more touched by the determinations to see a healthy
life prevail in spite of the obstacles.
I had gone through my own personal battle, too, that weekend, of hearing
some stinging words by someone I care about (those you care about are the ones
who can hurt you, you know?) and as I listened to one woman's incredible
testimony of surviving trouble in ministry, I lamented to one of my friends
there, "Is it worth it? Is it worth it to keep fighting and fighting only
to get knocked down again?" But inside I already knew the
answer. The speaker was a testimony to having survived.
Somehow God saw her through something extremely devastating and she was able to
share about it with others. That took strength.
If the counter forces can't hit you head on, they will try to come around
the sides to ambush you. If your core and center of life is not firmly
established, you can become crippled from the attacks. Inside of us there
is something that cries.
When a baby is born, it cries. It just went through something
incredibly hard and major changes have occurred. However, we rejoice
because we have great hopes for that baby's opportunities. To us, that cry
is the sound of life.
The pressures are on in life. If we do not have guidelines that help
us and preserve us, our lives can get crushed. If we do not have faith for
a supernatural deliverer, we can lose all hope. If we do not believe there
is a quality of life, we can become so despondent that we quit trying.
We can't take the burdens of all the rest of the world onto
ourselves. We need to define our own battles. Spiritual and physical
awakening comes in stages. We aren't instant wonders in a day. Every
baby began as two cells! What a wonder that is! How can
any man or woman claim to have a handle on the creation of God?
But it's faith in God that gets us beyond where we are today. Life is
a constant battle. We must put a value on that relationship with God or we
will succomb to the attacks of the enemy.
There are guidelines to life. People can come up with many agendas
and ideas but it's God's Word that has the keys to the open doors. If you
want success, you must find His Ways. He is the Way, the Truth and the
Life. This is not a masuline/feminine war. He is the Creator of both
and loves both dearly and equally.
If you truly want life, seek hard to live by the Ten Commandments.
Have you failed? There is hope and forgiveness in Jesus. He went to
the Cross to die for your sins. You needed a way, He made a way. He
is the Way!
And you need to know what a quality life is and that is one that bears
fruit. It doesn't just have some fruit, it bears fruit.
That fruit-bearing life is found through the Holy Spirit, but you
can't accomplish and maintain and continually bear fruit without the foundation
of Life in God.
You have heard the expression, "Keep it simple"? That is good advice
in God. You can specialize and be blessed but if you have an honest and
sincere heart and if you want to help others, keep the basics. They
work every time.
A supernatural Deliverer will come, not just for a group, but for every
individual who calls out to Him in sincerety and truth.
God bless you,