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January 3 2017 3 03 /01 /January /2017 14:39

(a.k.a. “THE Eternal Reason for the Refiner's Fire”)

Recently I have been shown,or have FINALLY become coherent enough to see, a specific way to pray - especially when faced with another contradiction, which has come to challenge my faith. When I find myself locked in a wrestling match with God – a struggle similar to the Jacob of Jewish fame, whose wrestling with God produced Israel. I have recently stumbled across a vitally urgent way of addressing God, that I had been sort of dancing around all these years. But still missing it, or sort of just hitting and missing it!

 

 

This concept is known in religious circles as “The Garden Prayer”, which Yeshua prayed during His final, pivotal agony on earth. And it is cited sanctimoniously in various ceremonies and religious rituals. But few pray it from the heart when facing the tests of agonizing proportions in their lives! Yeshua - when facing the hardest and last test of His humanity prayed this agonizingly honest prayer; "Now My soul is troubled, and what shall I say? ‘Father, save Me from this hour’? No! It is for this purpose that I have come to this hour! (So I pray) Father, glorify Your name!

 

 

This prayer echoed His sentiments which were earlier, similarly expressed in His instructional model, better known as “The LORD'S Prayer”. In which He had boldly declared, “Thy Kingdom come! Thy will Be DONE, on earth as it is in Heaven” (without hesitation or argument). But suddenly, we see that it had taken on an infinitely more serious tone. Indeed it had come down to that place, in which we would say, “the rubber had met the road”. Now it had come down to the crucible moment. Now He was in the position to either prove His commitment to His self-proclaimed mission, or fail epically, dooming all mankind forever!

 

 

Now, alone, amid sleeping disciples with full bellies and confused heads, those lofty loyalties were being tried, tested, hard core – and every fiber of His humanity was straining to continue pressing toward the eternal goal of this day! In fact, it is said that the stress of this emotional/mental conflict, this spiritual challenge, caused Him to literally sweat blood! (1.See the note on this medically observed condition below.)

 

 

It is very easy to pray, "Thy will Be Done, Thy Kingdom come..." when the sun is shining, and His “will”, for the moment, is that one is surrounded by eager students! Ah, such happy sacrifice! But here, in the dark garden of Gethsemane, on a chilled evening, when death is eminent, and betrayal is stalking one through the woods...if that be part and parcel of God's plan for success...then, are we still in? ALL in?!

 

 

First we battle, as even He did, as He was suffering to grasp the reality of His situation, could THIS really be HIS WILL for me?!! It so seemingly goes in the opposite direction of the “Glory and Reigning” which was promised! It is indeed a profound contradiction! But then – we KNOW – and Yeshua knew better than any other – The Father does NOT lie!!

 

 

So, then – when that it IS indeed His will for this moment, becomes irritatingly clear - we begin the battle of the whys?????!!!!!. But we quickly realize, if we have been true disciples for any period of time, that His ways are NOT our ways. His Spirit will kindly and firmly remind us in those times. And also bring to mind (if we have trained in His Word as instructed) all the things we have read and learned which apply to this situation! Among those being the reality that HIS refiner's fires take some pretty weird and harsh turns from our human perspective.

 

 

Sometimes what He sets ablaze, or scoops out of our melted down gold, is not something which we were even aware that we needed to be rid of! Sometimes, instead, it was something, or someone, to which we had become VERY firmly attached – and saw no need, and certainly had no desire, to be separated from! Still, the flesh must be tried and executed, and that is never a pleasant experience! And either we signed on to accomplish His will and Glory or we did not! It is in these times when our true motive becomes exposed, when we are discovered to be true disciples or fair weather friends!

 

 

He had it doubly hard though. The “flesh” which was being executed in this instance was NOT His own! He was taking the hit for US, for our fallen nature , paying the price for our collective rebellion, which dates back to the first man Adam! He was championing our cause, to win back the right and possibility of receiving back our renewed, reborn, reactivated, spirit-man. To make it possible for us to even enter the refining process, in which we might be returned to the Character and Image of our Father Creator-God, and have an eternal relationship with Him!

 

 

I don't think we consider - when we are facing some agonizing soul crusher - that THIS could be the moment for which we were created!? As He did! As He was agonizingly aware!!! It rarely occurs to us, in fact, that this unpleasant experience which we are enduring, or kvetching our way through, might be leading to, or facilitating, the very purpose for which we were born!? Wow. That is a stunning idea. Not really in a good way at first!

 

 

But, really, I don't think we stop often enough in those moments to consider WHY we are HERE - at this particular test, at this particular time; "For such a time as this" - as Mordecai said to Esther, when SHE was facing a similar agony of life threatening proportions on behalf of the Jewish people. I think that is because we have not been trained to consider this option. We have not been enough tutored – partly because we are selectively resistant to such teaching – in how to assess and acquiesce to the “fellowship of His sufferings”, or to participate willingly in the “death to the flesh-man “ process, which is, of necessity, ongoing in the lives of all true believers!

 

 

Because you see, all real spiritual agony is life threatening. It may or may not be threatening your physical life in the literal sense, as in Cancer or some dread illness or persecution! But it ALWAYS targets the "lifestyle" to which we've become accustomed, or that we were working towards, or dreaming of! Because the goal is never temporal, it is always eternal. Our tests come that HIS NAME may be Glorified in US. Always.

 

 

 

Esther got through her agony, and her people were saved. And God was Glorified, and still is, through her dedication and courage! Yeshua got through His agony, was violently murdered in a great cloud of peace and trust (miraculous in itself to me), and then rose again, becoming the way to God! We were saved, and God was, and IS, glorified in that, to this day!

 

 

May the agonies we face today - which threaten our sleep, health, finances, sanity and peace - may they be put firmly into the hands of our great Father-King - and May all our hopes, faith and dreams be laid on the table that HIS Great Name Be GLORIFIED through our trust in HIM!

 

 

May we be found faithful to the heavenly calling, and not settle for mere accolades of man. May we never trade treasures for trinkets - by selling "land", spiritual territory, which we've never truly claimed in the first place! May we become stalwart, dependable, trustworthy, thoroughly vetted, utterly devoted Disciples of the Anointed One, and may our service be WITH Him, not merely FOR Him - and may that service be marked with His presence and anointing!

 

 

For that Anointing is what moves burdens and destroys yokes of bondage! That Anointing is what releases the captive, and restores what the locusts have eaten! That Anointing is what we need to perform His work in the earth. Agony of soul is the mark of one being refined. Do not strive against the Artist as He perfects His gold! Agony is a sign of our great value to God- not - as the enemy would have us believe - of our worthlessness! The pitiful attempts of the relentless enemy in bringing us to that conclusion is almost enough to negate it. He is, after all, the worst of liars!

 

 

Soon the fires will be all past, and WE, shining as pure gold, will Glorify His Name, as it should be Glorified! Soon, our suffering will have an impact such as we would have never dreamed. Deliverance is never a goal - it is a mere side effect of His Name being glorified. We need to cease praying for deliverance from the fire! We can never get "done" that way! In God's fires the only way "OUT" is "THROUGH"!

 

Press on! Praise on! Fight on! Don't weary! But ever fight toward the real goal – which is:

That HIS GREAT NAME BE GLORIFIED!

 

Shalom Chavarim!

SCD

11/11/16

 

{Footnote: 1. Bloody sweat is called hematohidrosis.[1] It may occur in individuals suffering from extreme levels of stress. Around the sweat glands, there are multiple blood vessels in a net-like form, which constrict under the pressure of great stress. Then, as the anxiety passes, the blood vessels dilate to the point of rupture and goes into the sweat glands. As the sweat glands produce a lot of sweat, they push the blood to the surface, which comes out as droplets of blood mixed with sweat.}

 

{Scriptural References:

 

Matthew 26:36-46 Jesus went with his disciples to a place called Gethsemane, and he said to them, “Sit here while I go over there and pray.” He took Peter and the two sons of Zebedee along with him, and he began to be sorrowful and troubled. Then he said to them, “My soul is overwhelmed with sorrow to the point of death. Stay here and keep watch with me.” Going a little farther, he fell with his face to the ground and prayed, “My Father, if it is possible, may this cup be taken from me. Yet not as I will, but as you will.” Then he returned to his disciples and found them sleeping. “Could you men not keep watch with me for one hour?” he asked Peter. “Watch and pray so that you will not fall into temptation. The spirit is willing, but the body is weak.” He went away a second time and prayed, “My Father, if it is not possible for this cup to be taken away unless I drink it, may your will be done.” When he came back, he again found them sleeping, because their eyes were heavy. So he left them and went away once more and prayed the third time, saying the same thing. Then he returned to the disciples and said to them, “Are you still sleeping and resting? Look, the hour is near, and the Son of Man is betrayed into the hands of sinners. 46 Rise, let us go! Here comes my betrayer!

 

    Luke 22:39- 46 Jesus went out as usual to the Mount of Olives, and his disciples followed him. On reaching the place, he said to them, “Pray that you will not fall into temptation.” He withdrew about a stone’s throw beyond them, knelt down and prayed, “Father, if you are willing, take this cup from me; yet not my will, but yours be done.” An angel from heaven appeared to him and strengthened him. And being in anguish, he prayed more earnestly, and his sweat was like drops of blood falling to the ground. When he rose from prayer and went back to the disciples, he found them asleep, exhausted from sorrow. “Why are you sleeping?” he asked them. “Get up and pray so that you will not fall into temptation.”

     

    Mark 14:32-42 They went to a place called Gethsemane, and Jesus said to his disciples, “Sit here while I pray.” He took Peter, James and John along with him, and he began to be deeply distressed and troubled. “My soul is overwhelmed with sorrow to the point of death,” he said to them. “Stay here and keep watch.” Going a little farther, he fell to the ground and prayed that if possible the hour might pass from him. “Abba, Father,” he said, “everything is possible for you. Take this cup from me. Yet not what I will, but what you will.” Then he returned to his disciples and found them sleeping. “Simon,” he said to Peter, “are you asleep? Could you not keep watch for one hour? Watch and pray so that you will not fall into temptation. The spirit is willing, but the body is weak.” Once more he went away and prayed the same thing. When he came back, he again found them sleeping, because their eyes were heavy. They did not know what to say to him. Returning the third time, he said to them, “Are you still sleeping and resting? Enough! The hour has come. Look, the Son of Man is betrayed into the hands of sinners. Rise! Let us go! Here comes my betrayer!”

     

    Esther 4:6-16 “Hathach went out to Mordecai in the open square of the city in front of the king’s gate, and Mordecai told him all that had happened to him, and the exact sum of money that Haman had promised to pay into the king’s treasuries for the destruction of the Jews. Mordecai also gave him a copy of the written decree issued in Susa for their destruction, that he might show it to Esther and explain it to her and command her to go to the king to beg his favor and plead with him on behalf of her people. And Hathach went and told Esther what Mordecai had said. Then Esther spoke to Hathach and commanded him to go to Mordecai and say, “All the king’s servants and the people of the king’s provinces know that if any man or woman goes to the king inside the inner court without being called, there is but one law—to be put to death, except the one to whom the king holds out the golden scepter so that he may live. But as for me, I have not been called to come in to the king these thirty days.”

    And they told Mordecai what Esther had said. Then Mordecai told them to reply to Esther, “Do not think to yourself that in the king’s palace you will escape any more than all the other Jews. For if you keep silent at this time, relief and deliverance will rise for the Jews from another place, but you and your father’s house will perish. And who knows whether you have not come to the kingdom for such a time as this?” Then Esther told them to reply to Mordecai, “Go, gather all the Jews to be found in Susa, and hold a fast on my behalf, and do not eat or drink for three days, night or day. I and my young women will also fast as you do. Then I will go to the king, though it is against the law, and if I perish, I perish.”}

     

     

     

     

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    • I am a devoted follower of Yeshua, the Messiah. I have been married to Gene Duncan II for 33 years. I have 7 children, 3 boys & 4 girls - all growing up. They have been home educated, K-12. I also write, hence the blog (including, but not limited to: children's books, poems, and personal growth art

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