What is coming to me as I ponder the chemical nerve attack in Salisbury, is that this act feels like a wake-up call to the nations, our own in particular. On a rather different level, it is also a reminder call to the Body of Christ.
Clifford Hill said that we should operate with Bible in one hand and newspaper in the other. Further on in this edition we will be focusing on specific issues and details, and presenting a wide range of interesting and informative links to round out our understanding of current events. But it is important first that we see these things in a broader spiritual context.
Jesus was very concerned that people read the signs of the times and recognised the direction the wind was coming from. It is perhaps no coincidence that we have been buffeted recently by a very cold wind, the so-called ‘Beast from the East,’ or, as it is known on the continent, the ‘Siberian Bear.’ Is the Lord saying something through this?
Whenever I am inclined to limit myself only to teaching and to presenting the meditative material I feel so at home with, the Lord often does something to remind me of His call to ‘prophesy again about many peoples, nations, languages and kings.’ (Rev. 10:11)
By ‘prophesy,’ He is not speaking of what is going to happen so much as sharing His perspective to the best of my ability, and passing it on the wider the Body of Christ. You may well want to pass this edition on to appropriate people, especially leaders.
With the advent of drones, we have become accustomed to a wider and higher view of the Earth on our screens; in this article, I am likewise seeking to provide an overview concerning recent events. Specific details are sure to change and develop more or less by the hour, but please do turn at least some of the information into prayers – and make the most of the special music links we are providing in this edition too.
The Lord often has to do something to jolt awake those who are sleepwalking, nations included. He is not in the least sentimental about taking the steps He needs to take! I believe that we are at a pivotal moment again in the nation. The rare (almost unique!) joint statement that was released on March 15th with Germany, France and America marks a first, but hopeful, sign of a potential reversal in the ‘distancing’ that has been growing between ourselves and our allies, and a chance to work in concert.
Old Testament prophecies go into considerable detail concerning not only the actions of the nations, but also their intentions. God was not in the least amused when nations such as Eden and Moab gloated at seeing Israel discomfited (see Obad. 1:13 for instance). In the first chapter of Zechariah, He reminds people through His prophet how His word and decrees ‘overtook’ their ancestors. He had been ‘only a little angry’ with His own people, and had allowed other nations to be the agents of His chastening – but they had gone way too far in the actions they took. But the nations went far too far in their retribution. (See Zechariah1:5-7.) David Pawson’s headmaster authorised his prefects the power to impose punishments on younger students – but when they took matters too far and became openly abusive, the headmaster’s fury toward them for betraying their charge was awesome to behold.
At the same time, the Lord spoke through Zechariah of a sea-change, promising that things would change. See Zechariah1:14-16.
Sharing the burden of the Lord
Sin, like complacency, is a deadly nerve agent that paralyses and destroys. There are many challenging political and military decisions to make, and we will be exploring quite a few of these but at the deepest level of all, may our heart cry is to see Him fulfil His highest purposes. Pray for people to awaken to their need for Him.
Those who care most deeply for people – and for society – feel these griefs as deeply in their hearts as if they were their own. Unlike all too many of us, who prefer to operate on the “out of sight out of mind” principle, they do not shut off, shut out or shut down because grievous events are happening a long way away. Rather, they cry out, feeling the power and pain of the suffering as if from within. The sensitive prophet Jeremiah experienced such grief powerfully, and sat aside, allowing himself to feel the full grief and weight of it – and prayed for the power of the Lord to restore hope in the midst of the darkness. (Lamentations 3:28-29.)
Does everyone feel the weight of these things to the same extent? By no means. God has many and highly varied callings, and some will feel the call to respond in such ways far more strongly than others. But there is blessing in choosing to keep our hearts open to His. God wants us to go deeper, and to know to that He is looking to us to be His ambassadors on earth as well as His intercessors in the heavenly court. He is looking for those will see and say it as it really is – on Earth and in Heaven.
Sir Christopher Meyer, former British ambassador to the United States, for example, has warned that the assassination of a former Russian spy on British soil is but one step away from an act of war.
I do believe that we are on the receiving end of one of God’s supernatural warnings. As our national and international defences have dwindled and been downgraded, so our true spiritual state and unpreparedness is also being exposed. God can use such jolts.
It was one such that saved the novelist Agatha Christie’s life. Betrayed by her husband and feeling at the end of herself, she released the handbrake of her car and headed it straight towards a pond, intending to commit suicide. That was when she felt a jolt that stopped the roll of the car. At that very moment, she was overcome by a feeling of the sinfulness of taking the life that God had given her and repented (changed her mind). She survived – and her greatest novels lay ahead of her.
As you take time and plunge into the rest of the material in this edition, may the Lord to speak to you about spiritual matters through the political issues we are dealing with. Politics are about people – and so is the Lord!