When I got born again in 2002, it was full steam ahead for me, face like flint, hands to the plow no looking back with Jesus. I was all in with the Lord. I didn’t care what people thought about me. I just wanted as much of Him that He’d allow me to have. I was so hungry for the things of God.
I got saved, water baptized, and filled with the Holy Spirit with the evidence of speaking in tongues within a few months of each other. Do NOT mishear my heart: I am not boasting in myself but the Lord whose Word is true, “Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, for they shall be filled,” (Matthew 5:6). That’s exactly what happened. It’s as simple as that and for every believer who hungers after Him.
Jesus was like: “Most assuredly, I say to you, unless you eat the flesh of the Son of Man and drink His blood, you have no life in you,” (John 6:53).
I was like: “Since, You’re buying, well already paid for “lunch”, let’s go!” And I skipped off hand-in-hand with Jesus on our peculiar journey together of various terrains – valleys, mountains, and such.
Well, in the early years of my walk with Him, it seemed like He tested my declaration of utter devotion to Him. Ha Ha Ha, Lord!
This. Is. Hilarious…
A few months before the Passion of the Christ movie came out, they showed the trailer at the church I was attending. Moments into it when they showed a portion of the crucifixion scene, the Spirit of God fell on me HARD.
I began to travail by the Spirit with guttural weeping and groanings from deep within my soul and spirit. Uncontrollably. And not at all quietly. Like all poured out completely weeping. There was even a guest speaker that day, and the church was full. At least 150-200 people. I do remember the guest speaker saying, “Praise God,” to my weeping because he must have recognized the familiar sounds of the travails of the Spirit, but that fellow “weirdo” never returned so.
I’d said to the Lord many times before that I was a living sacrifice unto Him, and I meant it and still do. Well, He poured it on thick that day.
I’m not saying be disruptive, rush the stage, and dance in the Spirit while the pastor is preaching. I mean: Be led by the Spirit who is peace not chaos. And the Spirit weeping through me at the remembrance of the Son of God being crucified so graphically was a time to He wanted to weep and did so through willing and given over to Him me.
I never made many friends at that church by the way. Just one other “creep” they also looked down upon – a mighty woman of God who laid hands on me in her home that God used to fill me with the Holy Spirit with the evidence of speaking in tongues. The first words of my prayer language simply – La. La. La. La. La.
I find the Lord and His ways so wonderfully peculiar, fascinating, and humbling at the same time. And I still don’t have many friends because I’m unwilling to quench the Spirit nor walk away from the narrow path. But that’s, okay, Jesus. You’re worth it.
When the church shuns someone for simply being fully surrendered, not perfect, surrendered, it’s not that they are “too much” or “too radical”. It is that Jesus and the ways of the Spirit are too much and too radical for the shunners. It’s Him they reject or pull away from. Not the surrendered, peculiar ones.
Honestly, I don’t fit so well in most churches because I don’t know how to do this walk without fearlessly giving myself over to the Spirit to have His way through me. For example, the Spirit loves to dance, so He dances through me. I will not stop Him for man’s sake. I don’t care what they think. But many care. They care how it makes their institution appear. “Oh, no! It might scare away the members.” They fear man more than God. That’s on them, but I refuse to allow them to stifle the Spirit in me or the ways of God.
Writing this made me think of that 90s song, Creep, by Radiohead. Parts of it resonate with me and my walk with the Lord. I changed the pronouns of the original song to make it work for this post and adlibbed the rest.
You’re a creep.
You’re a weirdo.
What the hell are you doing here?
You don’t belong here.
You may think I’m a creep.
You may think I’m a weirdo.
What am I doing here?
I belong to Jesus.
[Paraphrased and additional lyrics adlibbed/added by me to the song, Creep, by Radiohead]
Don’t worry if you don’t seem to fit in with the majority of Christians. The Word says, “Narrow is the path that leads to life, and few there be that find it.”
I’m sorry if you’ve suffered from church hurts and were mistreated by those who are called to love you. You’re not alone, You are His, and nothing can separate you from His love. Be sure to forgive them and give the situation over to the Lord. Unforgiveness is not worth it. And it’s disobedience to the Lord. Blessed are you when you are hated for His namesake. He will make a way to bless you for what you went through.
Perhaps it’s not such a bad thing not to fit in with the crowd after all. Jesus didn’t.