Called to a Life of Contemplative Prayer
February 4, 2017
This is the continuation of a series of Podcasts started in Episode #528.
(Carole) Well, you know in answer to what you began with at one of your stories over the promise for a particular thing, that He had said, “Though the vision tarry, wait for it.” And I had received that promise several years ago, and you received the same promise just a few months ago where the Lord also spoke, “It will not tarry.” And I had begun in the morning and when that Holy Spirit brings it. I can’t tell you I do it every day. But when He brings it to mind, I will remind the Lord, “Lord, You said that this would not tarry. You said it not by one witness, but by two.” And I just proclaim that. And in the last couple of days I’ve had evidence that the Lord is truly bringing that to fruition.
(Martha) I think I told you that morning that you described your little girl with her blond curls, that I believe what you saw is a contemplative prayer life. Contemplative prayer is listening to God, getting His mind. But you have to live a life of that. And what you described and what I had in my childhood, that I always go back to as the favorite way to live, is just naturally going and not really trying to control it or make anything happen. You just naturally live. Wouldn’t that be easy if we could come to that as a contemplative lifestyle!? And that was one of the things I thought about later, Carole, because it takes a lifestyle, sort of, to pray; it says, “Pray without ceasing.” “Devote yourself to prayer,” in Colossians. And to do that there has to be a simplicity of not hearing a lot of things except Him, and not knowing, not trying to know everything, but to know Him in that day. So, I believe what He’s brought you to is the contemplative prayer life that you’re just there with Him. It’s fellowship with Him by His love. Just being with Him in everything.
(Carole) The foundation of that is faith. First, faith that He is and faith that He is absolutely there and in absolute control. And it’s you and Him. It begins and ends with faith. A knowing, faith is, faith is knowing that you know that you know that you know with no explanation. You just simply know.
(Martha) And that Tree of Knowledge is a trick, because we believe it’s by knowledge that we know. It’s not. It’s by the Voice we know, by the Person we know. It’s spontaneity – it’s spontaneous living. And I’ve noticed in these last weeks that I will assume that a work or a responsibility has a certain order. And He will take me, if I follow Him, and I’m meandering through the woods with Him in my house, as you put it, I find I’m going to clean something that doesn’t seem to matter as much as the other. But I’m going where I’m led to go. In other words, I might need to fill the dishwasher, but I’m going to a drawer to empty everything out and clean the drawer, which is not logical necessarily to me. But His order is what I’m after – His order. And His order is not always logical. I always talk about… In my Thompson Chain Reference Bible it has a map of Jesus’ goings and it’s a zigzag, mysterious wandering looking map. But His order in this day is something beyond what I would consider order.
(Carole) And if we could make that clear, Martha, because I so identify with that, but if we believed that He is leading, and we are simply following and didn’t resist that wandering or where that wandering was taking us, we would be free and full of joy. I believe that!
(Martha) Absolutely. We would be… It’s spontaneous. It’s like you have an instinct of where to go and what to do next. And it might not fit any human idea, but it’s that spontaneous, being led of the Spirit and starting by believing that you will be led in the day. That’s the faith that you will be led, so you are. It’s natural, not effort to be led. It’s not even… It’s believing that He’s leading you.
(Carole) And you know, you’ve been teaching us, and we have the CD series, or at least the beginning of the CD series on the Lord’s Prayer. And so often I will start the day with, “Our Father, Who art in heaven, hallowed be Thy name. Thy Kingdom come, Thy will be done,” and just to as we pray that to believe it and let it be – just that would be absolute freedom in Him and joy in Him.
(Martha) And not needing to know.
(Carole) And not needing to know.
(Martha) But just being. I loved you said the word, ‘just being.’ That ‘to know’ when I did the tape of the month I talked about Paul saying, “I fear for you lest… Satan corrupt your minds from the simple devotion to Christ.” (2 Corinthians 11:3) And the corruption of the mind is simply trying to, Satan trying to get in with knowledge. And a child doesn’t need knowledge. A child moves naturally and spontaneously and instinctively. I think that’s how we’re… It’s instinctive what the Spirit is doing, if you trust it, if you believe it.
(Carole) And that knowledge is law. That’s what that knowledge is. It’s law, and as soon as I go there, I am not in simplicity.
(Martha) It’s interesting, Carole, because everywhere the scripture calls us to have knowledge it’s to have knowledge of the Lord. It’s never knowledge for it’s own sake. It’s always knowledge of Him. “Grow in grace and in the knowledge of the Lord Jesus Christ.”
(John) So, while you’re saying this, I’m looking at two different things. One, the world and the media and everything out there in the world basically calls me continually to eat from the Tree of Knowledge, constantly trying to feed me opinion and knowledge. Knowledge, knowledge, knowledge. And every single time I go and munch down on that, I get completely trashed, because I’m leaving faith, because I have to be in faith because I’m justified and living in faith, and I’m in relationship with Him, and my knowing is know Him. And so whenever I go to know to know, to save myself, to save my loved ones, to save my property, to save my country, to save my whatever it is. It doesn’t matter. Whenever I leave the faith and that simplicity, that childlike simplicity of walking in relationship, communing and communicating, even without words, when I leave that and I go and I start ingesting what’s being fed, that’s when I leave faith. Does that make sense?
(Martha) Absolutely. And what happens to you? Death to your spirit?
(John) Oh, yeah, yeah, yeah. I mean every single time I’ve left and done that.
(Martha) But you know, John, I’ve always told you, you live by your spiritual instincts more than any person I know. You simply know in your spirit. You listen to your spirit. The world comes after you, because you have to do some work that connects to it, but your brilliance and your gift is that you live instinctively in the most practical ways. You will know what to do about a thing just by the Spirit within you. So, you do, that’s what you exemplify. You may get distraught, distracted at times, but your basic method of living that I so treasure and want to be, is this instinctive living. You just naturally flow toward what you feel you should do.
(John) And you know this is tragedy of that is that I live with a law that it has to look a particular way. And I don’t enjoy and experience all the grace that’s presented in my very living that way. I’ve always lived like that, but I’ve always judged it, and I’ve always put myself underneath a law to be something other than. And because I’ve done that, I’ve prevented Him from really celebrating how He’s created me to do that. And I don’t believe it’s just me. I believe, you know, we’re all set in a particular order and a particular way, and when we leave that way because ‘it should be a different way’ and it doesn’t matter what it is. If you leave the way that you’re created and that He’s designed you and you go, and literally you lock yourself down with a law.
(John) ‘I should be a different way.’
(Martha) And the law is just ‘oughts’ and ‘shoulds’ and it’s so easy to go there.
(Carole) And it’s just not that place of believing that He is, that He is here and that He, because you have asked Him, is leading you and guiding you in the place where you should go.