Bible Reading: Matthew 8:23-27

Tonight I was reading the Bible with a fellow child of God : )

Here are the verses for your reference before I begin:

23 And when He stepped into the boat, His disciples followed Him.

24 And behold, there arose a great tempest in the sea, so that the boat was covered by the waves; but He was sleeping.

25 And they came near and roused Him, saying, Lord, save us; we are perishing!

26 And He said to them, Why are you cowardly, you of little faith? Then He arose and rebuked the winds and the sea, and there was a great calm.

27 And the men marvelled, saying, What kind of man is this that even the winds and the sea obey Him?

I have read this passage before, and in other Gospels in the New Testament.  Yet what struck me afresh this time round was the contrast between the great tempest described in Matt. 8:24 and the great calm featured in verse 26. It’s ironic because the weather in my present location could be likened to a “great tempest” of sorts, and I would wonder about boats and/or vessels that would brave the storm to be out on a boat. But Jesus was, and not only so but He was sleeping [in the boat] (verse 24). He surely was much greater than the tempest! When we face outward environments that may be literally comparable to storms or those that more figurative, or inward, the same applies –

Praise the Lord, He is greater than all! : )

 

 

Advertisements

Emanna: The Speaking Christ in Us

Listen to the Christ who speaks within us!

I have to admit, there are a fair number of times where I do not listen to the indwelling Christ within, not keeping His word which He speaks to me. But when I do, oh what a sweet presence there is between us and God! ♡

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ Bible Verses ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

John 14:15 If you love Me, you will keep My commandments.
(21) He who has My commandments and keeps them, he is the one
who loves Me; and he who loves Me will be loved by My Father,
and I will love him and will manifest Myself to him. (23)
Jesus answered and said to him, If anyone loves Me, he will
keep My word, and My Father will love him, and We will come
to him and make an abode with him.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ Words of Ministry ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

The living Christ within us speaks constantly. He will never
stop speaking. Due to the fact that we are still in a
situation with so many negative things, most of the time this
living Christ speaks just one word—no… A sister may say,
“I’m going to the department store to buy a pair of shoes,”
and the Lord says, “No.” A brother may desire to talk to a
certain person, and the indwelling Christ says, “No.”

If we keep the Lord’s commandments, we shall be loved by the
Father and the Son, and the Son will manifest Himself to us.
Tell me, according to your experience, when the Lord spoke
the word “no” to you and you obeyed Him, what was the result?
You found yourself immediately in the presence of the Lord.
But if we do not care for that little word “no,” we shall
lose His presence. Whenever we listen to His speaking and
keep His commandments, His presence is immediately
intensified and becomes so sweet, precious, watering,
strengthening, enlightening, and nourishing. This is the
manifestation of the indwelling Christ.

You may ask, “Since He indwells me, He is already here. Why
do you say that He will manifest Himself?” Because the
indwelling Christ quite often disappears. Although He
indwells you, whether or not He appears or disappears from
your inner sense depends on whether or not you listen to His
words.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
Words of Ministry taken from Witness Lee, Life-study of John
(Anaheim, CA: Living Stream Ministry, 1985), pp. 381-382

Emanna: Testifying of Our Experience

What we have seen, heard, experienced of the Lord – this is what we can share with others!

Today I was reflecting on a word that a brother shared about our experiences. Even though we may not know it, but there is surely a change in our being when we experience something of the Lord. These experiences which we share with others is a way to testify, to be a living witness of the Lord! And I love the goal of this – to bring others to the Lord, so that they can also experience the Lord too 🙂

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ Bible Verses (RcV) ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
Acts 22:15 For you will be a witness to Him unto all men of
the things which you have seen and heard.
1 John 4:14 And we have beheld and testify that the Father
has sent the Son as the Savior of the world.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ Words of Ministry ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
What is witnessing? From [the above verses] we see that the
basis of witnessing is what we have seen and heard. You
cannot be a witness to what you have not seen with your own
eyes or heard with your own ears. Paul saw something with
his own eyes and heard something with his own ears. God
charged him to be a witness of what he had seen with his own
eyes and heard with his own ears. A person is a witness to
what he has seen.

Thank God, you have believed in the Lord. You have met Him,
believed in Him, received Him, and gained Him. You are
saved. You have been delivered from sins, received
forgiveness, and obtained peace. Now that you have believed
in the Lord, what joy you possess. This joy is something
which you did not have before. Formerly, how heavy was the
load of sin upon you! But now, thank God, this load of sin
is gone. You have seen and heard something. What should you
do today? You should testify of your experience. This does
not mean that you have to leave your job to be a preacher.
It means that you should witness to your friends, relatives,
and acquaintances of what you have seen and heard, and bring
them to the Lord.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
Bible verses are taken from the Recovery Version of the
Bible (RcV) and Words of Ministry from Watchman Nee,
Messages for Building Up New Believers, p. 274. Both are
published by Living Stream Ministry, Anaheim, CA.

Emanna: All Things Are for Us

I am encouraged by the following excerpt. There are many things that go on in our lives, simple ordinary activities and special outstanding occasions, with positive and negative features. Through all these things, God is working to perfect us to become His expression, His Body. Even as today we have a number of successes and/or failures, the outcome is the realisation that these are not for us primarily, but that God’s desire would be worked out in us. 

So all things, regardless whether good or bad, are for us. And for all things to be for us really means that all things are for God, in particular that we would be for God. No matter the situation, make room for God’s perfecting us in Christ to become His expression!

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ Bible Verses ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
1 Corinthians 3:21-23 So then let no one boast in men, for all things are yours, Whether Paul or Apollos or Cephas or the world or life or death or things present or things to come; all are yours, But you are Christ’s, and Christ is God’s.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ Words of Ministry ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

According to these verses, not only the spiritual giants are for us, but all things, including negative things such as the world and death, are for us. This means that even the world and death can work good for us. God uses everything to perfect us. Hence, all things are for us, we are for Christ, and Christ is for God. God uses everything to perfect us so that we may be the living Body of Christ. Therefore, we are the Body for Christ, and Christ is the expression of God. Thus, Christ is for God. God is expressed through Christ, Christ is expressed through us, and we are perfected through all things. If we see this, we shall be content to receive all that God ordains for us. God may ordain a difficult husband or wife. He may even ordain death. But even a difficult spouse or death itself is for us and is used to perfect us. Therefore, we need to receive what God has ordained and acknowledge that it is being used by Him to perfect us.

As an elderly person, I have passed through a great many things in my lifetime. I can truly testify that all things are mine and that God uses them all to perfect me. Because God uses all things, I find it very difficult to say who would make the best wife for a certain brother or the best husband for a certain sister. How blessed we are to be perfected by all things! Oh, how good it is to see that all things are for us!

In the light of this word, we should not exalt anyone, and we should not have any preferences or choices concerning persons, matters, or things. Rather, we should see that all things, bad as well as good, are for us to perfect us so that we may become the Body of Christ, who is the expression of God. This is the proper understanding of Paul’s word that all things are ours, that we are Christ’s, and that Christ is God’s.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
(c) Living Stream Ministry. Bible verses are taken from the Recovery Version of the Bible and Words of Ministry from Witness Lee, Life-study of 1Corinthians, pp. 293-295. Both are published by Living Stream Ministry, Anaheim, CA

Emanna: Telling Him Your Troubles

It’s so wonderful that we can just come to the Lord just as we are. He’s always got an open ear to hear us out, so we can confide in Him as a dear, close companion : )

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ Bible Verses ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

1 Peter 5:7 Casting all your anxiety on Him because it matters to Him concerning you.
Hebrews 4:15 For we do not have a High Priest who cannot be touched with the feeling of our weaknesses, but One who has been tempted in all respects like us, yet without sin.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ Words of Ministry ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Our Lord is a Lord in whom men can confide. Men can easily tell the Lord what they want to say. Many times we encounter sufferings. Many times we have joy. Many times we need someone to share our sorrow or joy, but we are unable to find someone. Even though our Lord is great, He does not neglect the small things. He is willing to listen to everything concerning us.

No man can sympathize with everyone. But our Lord can sympathize with everyone. He cares for the affairs of us all. In His heart, there seems to be no one else’s affairs but ours. He bears all our sorrows. Our Lord is willing to bear all our anxieties and patient to listen to our speaking. Do not think that He will not listen. We should never be lazy in bringing our matters to Him. He is waiting for us to tell them to Him, and He is happy to listen to our speaking.

We should realize that when we have a thorough talk with the Lord and pour out our heart to Him, our intimacy with the Lord is one step further, and we know Him a little more. Intimate contact with Him at these times is hundreds of times better than our ordinary fellowship with Him. By these contacts we advance in life. We are not saying that you cannot ask others to pray for you or ask others to help you. We are saying that one can only be drawn closer to the Lord through telling Him everything.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Bible verses are taken from the Recovery Version of the Bible and Words of Ministry from Watchman Nee, Tell Him. The Collected Works…vol. 18. 327-329. Both are published by Living Stream Ministry, Anaheim, CA.

Bible verses are taken from the Recovery Version of the Bible
and Words of Ministry from Watchman Nee, Tell Him. The
Collected Works…vol. 18. 327-329. Both are published by
Living Stream Ministry, Anaheim, CA.

Emanna: The Condition to Receive God’s Blessing

What I enjoyed from this excerpt is that we need to be hungry and thirsty in order to receive God’s blessing. Here is the chorus of a hymn which I feel is fitting for this Emanna portion:

Feed me, Lord Jesus, give me to drink,
Fill all my hunger, quench all my thirst;
Flood me with joy, be the strength of my life,
Fill all my hunger, quench all my thirst.

See http://www.witness-lee-hymns.org/hymns/H0811.html for the full version of this hymn.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ Bible Verses ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Luke 1:53 The hungry He has filled with good things, and the rich He has sent away empty.
Psalm 107:9 For He satisfies the thirsty soul, and the famished soul He fills with good.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ Words of Ministry ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

We must realize that God’s blessing to man is based on one condition. In order for God to bless a man, he must satisfy one condition: he must be hungry. If we are not hungry, we cannot expect to receive anything from God. God’s riches and grace are reserved for only one kind of people: those who are hungry. Many people are often dissatisfied and unhappy. However, dissatisfaction and unhappiness are not necessarily the same as hunger. A man may be unhappy and dissatisfied, yet at the same time, refuse to seek for more because he is not hungry even though he is dissatisfied. What does it mean to be hungry? It is being empty before God and feeling unfulfilled within. An empty and unfulfilled feeling is an impetus for a person to seek after God. However, if a person is not hungry, he can sit in the same place for days without doing anything. God has promised to fill only those who are hungry. He has not promised to fill those who are dissatisfied. Those who are full, that is, who think that they are rich, will be sent away empty- handed.

Miss Barber [this writer’s spiritual mentor] used to tell others that from her youth through her old age she had an eternal hunger for God. She told others that whenever her eyes were not set on the Lord, she would not feel hungry. But whenever her eyes were set on the Lord, she would be continually hungry before the Lord. She was hungry continually, and the Lord filled her continually.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Bible verses are taken from the Recovery Version of the Bible and Words of Ministry from Watchman Nee, Life and Light. The Collected Works…vol. 41. 63-64.  Both are published by Living Stream Ministry, Anaheim, CA.

Emanna: The Inner Leading of the Spirit

I enjoyed from this excerpt of Emanna about the inner leadings of the Spirit, in that the Spirit can either inwardly urge or forbid us. We need to pay attention to this sense of the Spirit within our spirit, for out of it we can have life and peace (or contrariwise, have unrest and spiritual death). The matter is that we do not introspect our senses, trying to think whether one is an inner urging or an inner forbidding by the Spirit. But what we need to do is pay attention to God’s will, set our mind on the Spirit, and out of it we shall have life and peace – God Himself.
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ Bible Verses ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Romans 8:6  For the mind set on the flesh is death, but the mind set on the spirit is life and peace. (14)  For as many as are led by the Spirit of God, these are sons of God.
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ Words of Ministry ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

There are two kinds of leading of the Holy Spirit. The first is an inner urging, as in Acts 8:29 when “the Spirit said to Philip, Approach and join this chariot” and in Acts 10:19-20 when the Holy Spirit said to Peter, “Rise up, go down and go with them.” These are inner urgings. The second kind of leading is an inner forbidding, as mentioned in Acts 16:6-7: “Having been forbidden by the Holy Spirit to speak the word in Asia. And when they had come to Mysia, they tried to go into Bithynia, yet the Spirit of Jesus did not allow them.” This is the inner forbidding.

In order to know God’s will, a new believer should be somewhat familiar with the inner sense. The Spirit of God dwells in the innermost part of man. Hence, the feeling of the Spirit is not something shallow or outward; it issues from the deepest part of man’s being. It is a voice that is not quite a voice, a feeling that is not quite a feeling. The Spirit of God within shows us whether something is according to His will. Provided we have the divine life within, we will feel right when we act according to this life, and we will feel terrible and uneasy within if we disobey and deviate slightly from this life. A believer should live a life that yields to this life. We must not do things that will take away our inner peace. Whenever we sense any unrest, we should realize that the Holy Spirit within is displeased with what we are doing; He is grieved. If we do something that is contrary to the Lord, we will surely have no peace within. The more we go ahead with it, the less peace and joy we will have. If something is of the Lord, spontaneously we will have peace and joy. However, do not overanalyze your inward feelings. If you keep analyzing whether or not something is right, you will be totally confused.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Bible verses are taken from the Recovery Version of the Bible and Words of Ministry from Watchman Nee, Messages for Building Up New Believers, pp. 408-409.  Both are published by Living Stream Ministry, Anaheim, CA.