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Life is a Mess
February 1, 2015
With Martha Kilpatrick and hosted by John Enslow
Special Guest: Carole Nelson
(J) So, Martha, tell me what is the thing that prevents us from experiencing the transcendence?
(M) I think I just read it in Isaiah 65. It’s rebellion. Rebellion takes a lot of nice forms, a lot of innocuous ways, a lot of simple paths that we don’t call it rebellion. Rebellion takes the form of bitterness against what happens to you as a child. It takes the form of… and that’s rebellion. Rebellion is, “I don’t like what happened. I don’t like what God gave me.” That is rebellion. It’s not merely bitterness. It’s rebellion. It takes the form of… This life He calls us to is a life of suffering, and even if you had a pleasant childhood, you can become as bitter as any abused person by this life and by what God allows you to pass through. He’s allowed me to pass through some pretty horrific things that you people have been involved in and witnessed. And yet, no matter what it is I am called to surrender, and I have to work through it until I say my ‘yes’ as you call it in your writings.
(J) So, are you saying that my rebellion is what could prevent me from enjoying the fruits of transcendence, because He still will be transcendent even if I am rebellious?
(M) You just won’t be involved in it, and you won’t get it.
(J) I won’t rise.
(M) Umhmm. Right. He will use your story as Saul, King Saul, as a negative story. He will get His transcendence, but He will use your story as a negative to prove the horror of rejecting Him as God, and failing… See, Saul, King Saul did not surrender to the will of God on two occasions. The first one he was warned, the second one he lost his throne, and it was simply rebellion, “I want to do what I want to do,” because he loved the approval of people more than the approval of God. We want something other than God. It’s just real simple. It’s just real simple.
(J) Well, you know that movie that we watched. We were at Redbox and we were just looking through the movies and there was one movie that looked very interesting because of the actors that were in it. So, we got it, and it was called, “The Giver.” And at first it seems like, you know, what a dumb movie, but…
(M) I hated it.
(J) Yeah, yeah, but the further we get away from it, I’m looking back at it and I’m goin, “There’s a lot to that movie.” Without trying to give away too much with it, Meryl Streep’s character was refusing the pain of actual life.
(M) And the mess.
(J) And the mess.
(M) Of actual life.
(J) Of the actual life.
(M) She wanted to control
(J) She wanted control..
(M) Of everybody and everything, and life is a mess.
(J) And life is a mess, and so she was refusing the sovereignty of God, making her own reality, and that made for murderers. It was beyond no empty. They didn’t even realize they were doing anything wrong.
(M) It’s having a dead conscience.
(J) They thought they were doing right.
(M) UhHmm. They thought it was good. It was kind of a sci-fi, and I don’t care for sci-fis.
(J) No, you don’t. But the amazing thing was, is that..
(M) It had a message.
(J) It did have a message, and the refusal of sovereignty, the trying to take control and the trying to make your own world
(M) Essentially they eliminated having any Valley of Achor. They eliminated troubles. They eliminated conflict, as if you could. They eliminated individuality, emotion, above all, emotion.
(Carole) They deliberately, they said they were getting an injection, but they didn’t get an injection. As I understood it, they were taking it out, their emotions. Was that…?
(J) They were deadening their emotions.
(Carole) They were deadening their emotions so that they had no emotions.
(M) They didn’t know what love was. They didn’t know what hate was.
(Carole) And they were forbidden to even entertain those thoughts.
(J) The reason I went into that was because of, it was rebellion. She was in rebellion to her world. She was in rebellion to the world that God created with feelings, emotions, with heartache, with war, with suffering, with pain. She wanted a world where there was no pain, and she eradicated every bit of pain by making a bunch of zombies. I mean, they were just kind of “Stepfordy” kind of people.
(Carole) A deliberate murderer, and chose who would live and who would die.
(J) Right, exactly.
(M) Everybody died. When you die to life, when you don’t have life…
(J) You’re dead. Yeah, exactly. So that was rebellion. The movie was about rebellion against God. And actually, the funny thing is, is the one who looked like the rebel, the Jeff Bridges character, who looked like the rebel, he actually was a rebel for life. And he was “The Giver.” So the movie’s kind of, you know. I know it’s sci-fi, and you don’t like sci-fi. I know I’m, you know, I’m ok with it, whatever. But the message behind it, you could extract from it what we’re talking about. So you’re saying that rebellion is what prevents me from enjoying the fruits of transcendence.
(M) And like I say, we think rebellion is one thing. We think it’s one terrible thing. Rebellion can be something that looks very good. It’s an individual secret transaction with God or without God.
(Carole) Ok, well, going back a little bit. Self-hatred is rebellion.
(M) Uhmhmm. Yes.
(Carole) And you may look normal and you may look like you’re living life and that everything’s fine, but when the Holy Spirit comes and puts His finger on it, at the bottom it is rebellion.
(M) And rebellion is pride, and self-hatred is pride.
(M) Yeah, that’s true. But it’s wonderful to know how big He is, and how trustworthy.
(J) He has exploded that word transcendence for me to bring His nearness to me. I am now, I feel closer to Him because of understanding just a drop of transcendence.
(M) Uhmhmmm. And it makes me know His wonder. I’m in awe of His wonders, His power, His ability, His life. It’s… I’m just stunned by Him. I keep thinking of this, so I’m going to tell it. Remember the ten lepers that were healed? And nine left healed, and one came back? And what Jesus said to him? There’s a big difference between being sovereignly healed and transcendently made whole. That’s to me the difference between just knowing God is sovereign as God and knowing His transcendence. And He did it by saying, “Thank You.” He did it by surrender and praise. Yes. And Jesus said, “You are made whole,” and that’s an entirely different life.
(J) Wow. That’s huge. That’s just huge.
(J) Wow. Transcendence brings peace.
(J) And the Shepherd brings peace. The goal of the Shepherd is to bring peace, because if He has sheep that are not in peace and they are in chaos, they’re not well. Stress affects the sheep. Stress will adversely affect their health, makes them susceptible to disease and parasites. Peace is what… The still water, the sunlight, the calm pastures, the green, beautiful, calm pastures, that’s what a shepherd is trying to bring; is trying to bring a source and a place of peace. And His transcendence, to me, brings peace, because I know He’s in control. That’s why a sheep can look at a shepherd and be like, “Is everything ok?” Because he knows that he’s on the job, and that they’re aren’t wolves coming, that he is watching what you’re eating. He’s ‘on you.’ He’s about you. He’s concerned with all that concerns you. And, wow! That, I mean, we’re all after peace, but most of us unfortunately go to get peace rebelliously. We try to do it with substance or with evacuating ourself from situations that would cause chaos or cause disruption. But He’s saying, “I’m going to bring you into peace, because I am over it all,” not by absence of situations that could bring chaos, not by absence of danger even. Yeah. “But I’m over it. I’m transcendent.” And I can lay back in His arms and say, “As long as You are in that much control and that you are transcendent and I am safe,” that brings such peace.
(M) Oh and I’ve been coming to so many places where… Psalm 121. He is your keeper. And Psalm 91, that Carole mentioned. “You will fear no evil and no evil will come near your tent.” That’s transcendence. Psalm 91 is transcendence, Carole. You’re right. And so is Psalm 121. “I will lift up my eyes unto the hills from whence cometh my help. My help cometh from the Lord.” And that’s a whole level of knowing Him that is… Oh, I just pray that the revelation will be out there like it is in you two. It puts absolute peace and joy in Him in your life.
(Carole) And I was thinking just before you said that, John, that it seems that the evidence of transcendence is peace.
(J) That’s real good. That’s real, real good.
(Carole) And what it also made me think of was the prayer at the very end of Hebrews in Hebrews 13, starting in verse 20. It says, “Now may the God of peace, who is the Author and Giver of peace, who brought again from among the dead our Lord Jesus, that great Shepherd,” John.
(J) There you go. That’s it.
(Carole) “of the sheep, by the blood that sealed, ratified the everlasting agreement, covenant, testament, strengthen, complete, perfect,” is what He’s doing with His rod and staff.
(J) Yeah. I made dead connection with your rod and staff with that. It’s just amazing.
(Carole) It is just amazing. “And make you what you ought to be and equip you with everything good that you may carry out His will while He, Himself works in you and accomplishes that which is pleasing in His sight through Jesus Christ, the Messiah, to whom be glory forever and ever to the ages of the ages. Amen,” Yes! “So be it.”
Amen! So very, very deeply from my heart…
I hear that this life can only be a messy place exactly because peace can only be Jesus. Every time I even desire to fix this place, I’m rebelling against my Shepherd.
This is so, so very deep…
As a sheep, I can choose to look at my Shepherd for the keeping of my heart, and not to look at my messy, scary and ugly natural life to keep my soul.
His transcendence is the power and life to make the peaceful green pastures be my reality, and not in the messy life that surrounds me…
Both exist at the same time, but I can only be alive in one of them!
That God’s grace would reach us this far and be this miraculous is at the least revealing of how “Other” He is – I cannot comprehend this truth…
I can only be more and more thankful…
May He keep taking us higher. Thank you so much for sharing what He has shown you.
BTW, I also never had any patience to watch sci-fi movies, until I saw The Matrix. After that I began noticing how much these kind of movies have such strong spiritual messages! More so than any other kind of movie… It’s interesting to see how not even man’s imagination can’t exclude the Jesus factor! :P
I really think God is using some sci-fic and cartoon films to express Himself. If not all the film, some scenes and parts have a strong spiritual content. Some films (for instance, Toy Story 3) I just tend to think they have been made by Christians. I am amazed at the poignant points in all the latest Disney films: Maleficent, Toy Story 3. There must be Christians in there, because the Gospel is so obvious all around. Anyway. I am amazed at how He expresses sometimes through movies. They are the modern counterpart of old painting, sculpting, architecture… and writing, all put in a place.
In any case, I consider a book is better than a film. In a film you are at the mercy of the film, in the book you have more control of the timing. You can pause… consider, then back come at it later. That’s why we are “living books”, not “living films”… and that’s why there is a Book of Life in heavens.
Definitely God is a writer, not a film-maker. However, He knows how to make films, no doubt at all.
BTW, I can recommend a sci fic film I recently saw, and I saw there such a depicting of the Christian walk:
Edge of Tomorrow (2014, Warner Bros., Tom Cruise and Emily Brunt).
I wholeheartedly recommend you NOT to read or know anything about the movie before seeing it.
Ok, I’ll look into it!
Oh these podcasts give all the PRAISE and GLORY to GOD, so grateful to you all for dealing and embracing and loving your lives so that HIS transcendence could be made manifest to sheep. May your prayers be answered for us all. May I say and “AMEN and thank you to SAM for his posts also.
The riches of Christ…
“So be it!!”
“Rebellion can be something that looks very good”
Indeed. You can be downright rebellious while “jolly-serving” God. Even while being praised by others. Just, as you said, look at Saul. He was serving God, and probably he thought he was doing it very well… BETTER than what the Lord had commanded. Look at his words.
Really, in the second part of the expression of his rebellion (when being rejected by God), the core of his rebellion was “to know better than God”. I tremble at this, because that’s very much the nature of my old man. Not only he thinks he knows, but that knows much far better than God. And in the real life, that means that you WILL NOT accept God’s correction. You WILL NOT let His Word drench down your guts in order to KNOW His glory (His trascendence), to know His countenance. Saul saving *the best* of the Amalekites is just a picture of the old man saving himself, not letting the Lord of War come and destroy the false places, and the false gods, and the whole of the falsehood the old clings to. Our enemies.
And I bless you today.