So last weekend I had my issue focussed prayer ministry session from my local Restoring the Foundations team. The plan was to work through some of the issues that had come up during my time of darkness that I went through at the end of last year.
The core issues they identified were abandonment, victimisation, rejection and anger. One of the recurring lies that came up was:
I don’t belong, I will always be on the outside
Now part of the ministry is to reject this lie and ask the Holy Spirit to replace it with Truth. But I really didn’t see this as a “lie”, just a sad fact of life.
Sure I have been told I was “leadership material” by a particular church but never given a role and in the end had to leave them to pursue what God had called me to.
Sure I have been told to stop ministering to people (despite the freedom that was being experienced by those I was praying for) because of .
Sure I have given prophetic words to two churches that were ignored but turned out to be true and had they heeded them it would have prevented their implosions.
It’s been a repeated sad fact of my life. I just don’t fit in the comfortable church mould – that’s why my wife and I ran an organic church for 3 years. We catered to those who didn’t fit in the box.
It is what it is. I wouldn’t have said it was a lie.
But I trusted these two people ministering so duly repented and asked God to show me the truth as I really didn’t get it. Here is the picture story I experienced in my mind:
I saw a vague path in a woods. As I asked about it I saw Jesus’ hand extended towards me in invitation – so I took his hand to follow him and left everyone else around me. As I did so I found that I was actually stepping off of a treadmill to go with Him.
I followed the path until it came to some overgrown bushes – I pushed through and found myself in a clearing with an overgrown fountain. I cleaned off the moss and it started pouring out water. I drunk some and it was refreshing.
I asked “Is this it? Is this just a special place for me?”
I saw myself filling an ice-cream tub with the water and taking it back to those I’d left who were still back where I left them. As I poured out this water for them to drink they were all clamouring to taste. They asked me where I got it from and I told them.
So then we all set off together and hacked a wide path to the clearing.
There were now picnic tables there in the clearing and we all sat down to eat and drink.
To me this picture story opened my eyes to the truth of my identity. I wasn’t an outsider – I am someone who goes places while they are comfortable staying in the same place. I am a pioneer, a visionary, a prophet, whatever you want to call it.
But stopping with me having a nice time on my own drinking the sweet water is not God’s purpose for me. Visionaries aren’t just meant to go off and do their own thing or “what God told them to do” – starting up a ministry on their own independent/outside of the Body of Christ.
We’re not meant to think that we’ll always be on the outside. That’s a lie that Satan tells us to prevent the blessing spreading to others.
We are meant to bring back what we find to the Body of Christ and let them taste it.
Just telling them won’t shift them. It is only when they taste and see that the LORD is good will they develop any desire to go beyond where they are currently happy at.
And then we will all go and occupy the new place that has been found and share God’s blessing together.
Don’t believe the lie that we don’t belong and have to be separate to the Body – it’s a lie to prevent blessing from being shared – it’s a lie to prevent the Kingdom from expanding.
I do belong to the Body of Christ and I’m the nerve that communicates Jesus’ dream of our future journey to the senses of the Body so that the whole body wants to move and go up to Zion together. Amen.