The Wall

     One of the greatest challenges in our world today is to maintain one’s individuality without unjustly mandating expectations across the masses.  A core and ongoing American ideal is to value and insure individual freedoms and liberties, all the while seeing freedoms attacked almost daily.  The Church is called to be a light of stability and clarity, an example of balanced resolve, while realizing that God leads the individual, as well as, the Corporate Body in the expansion and manifesting of His Kingdom.

       The Church, as a whole, is called to know God and to reflect His character and will in the world.  This is only possible as we let Holy Spirit work through us, as we know God’s Word, and as we love in the manner that He loves.  God’s love is not a squishy love; it is a giving and dying love – an overcoming and sacrificial love full of the Fruit of the Spirit in all things.

     Let me give an illustration to serve the purpose of this week’s ‘Word to Consider’.  Picture a wall around a city, much like the ancient walls around Jerusalem.  This is an adequate and strong wall with properly secured gates of entry and protection.  Inside the wall, we are protected; on the wall, we are warned; outside the wall, we fight.  When we forget that a wall has purpose and placefrom various vantage points, we run the risk of stepping into great error or at best not showing honor or reflecting the heart of God to those around us.

 

It's Perspective

     To those who are inside the wall’s protection, they are not currently watching or fighting in the same manner as the Watchman on the wall or the Warrior in the field.  To those who are on the wall as a Watchman, the wall can be a solitary place, not understood by many but useful to all.  This place on the wall could be a last point of warning and resistance.  To those who are outside the wall, the wall’s protection has been willingly left behind for the overall demand to confront the enemy on its own ground.  These warriors often sustain the greatest blows and pay the highest price.

    All too often, those inside the walls attempt to correct those on or outside the walls with words of peace and safety not realizing that it is because they hold their forward positions, peace and safety is possible.    Those on the wall are learning and growing in their ability to discern the signs of the times while bringing warning of possible harm.  And then those who have left everything for the less than easy place in the field are growing and learning the art of war, all the while suffering uncommon attack and heavy loads not known to those on the wall or in the city’s safety within. 

     The victory of this city and those that are a part of the community at large comes when they learn to flow and learn from each other’s vantage point rather than striving to correct or transform others to see from their perspective with insinuation of being incorrect otherwise.

     I regularly read articles that present counter arguments on many topics.  For instance, the ‘all is well message’ versus the ‘doom and gloom, take cover and repent message’, or even the ‘all is not well message’ which is positioned somewhere in between. 

     Scripture tells us, in John 13:35, that the world will know that we are the His disciples by our love for one another Ephesians 4:3 tells us to maintain ‘unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace’ and then continues into verse 13 by telling us to work together ‘till we all come to the unity of the faith and the knowledge of the Son of God’  who is the express image of God on this earth.

     Joel 3:10 is the basis for an older song from Hillsong (video) many will remember.  ‘Let the weak say I and strong, Let the poor say I am rich, …  because of all the Lord has done.’  Perspective is everything and God speaks a needed word for the needed time.  The evangelist speaks salvation, the pastor speaks patience and care, the teacher conveys standards and truth that are measurable, the prophet speaks of direction and provocation, and the apostle speaks of building, expanding, and strength.  All are needed, but few are mingled, and unity of the Spirit is realized when all work together as designed.   Unity does not mean conformity.

     Unity of the Spirit is not possible until there is confidence in our individuality and security from our coming together as a force.  From my perspective, humility and repentance forged with the confidence of relationship and selflessness is the only way God’s unity, God’s army, and the Lord’s Bride will be realized.  

     There are those who are called to look inside the church, and those who are called to watch outside the church walls.  Until we embrace the full equation of what God is building, we will reflect less than His unity, and not build what He desires.  A healthy response to an, as-yet, unseen perspective is to maintain the honor of the family of God, develop a teachable attitude, and stop developing battle lines inside the walls.

    Do all in the spirit of unity.  It is a common practice to illustrate a point by telling who is doing it wrong.  This is not necessary or helpful.  Realizing that God is leading us all, that we are standing on different places, and that giving instruction is many times far more beneficial and less condemning than bringing correction or even rebuke. 

     As for the varying words mentioned above that we all hear today, I leave you with this verse from 2 Chronicles chapter 36:

15 ‘And the Lord God of their fathers sent warnings to them by His messengers, rising up early and sending them, because He had compassion on His people and on His dwelling place. 16 But they mocked the messengers of God, despised His words, and scoffed at His prophets, until the wrath of the Lord arose against His people, till there was no remedy.’

     The issue today and in the days of 2 Chronicles is that pride is prevalent, repentance and humility are left wanting.  Millions of babies are aborted, the elderly and the poor are being abused, freedoms once protected are being destroyed by lawless government and the Church is neglecting the proper place of a wall while building walls that are not needed inside the camp.   We must come together as Christ intended or we will fall as the enemy advances over a sleeping giant.  It is pleasant in the city, the Watchmen are taking note, and the battle rages in the field.  Find your place and honor those who are laboring among you.