This past week as I have been spending some time with my best friend near Chicago before heading back to Ecuador, we have been reading together the book The Final Quest by Rick Joyner. She had read this book before and it greatly impacted her life, so she was passing it along to me. We still have one more chapter to go, but the last chapter so greatly impacted me that I simply have to take time to process it. Perhaps it will take the rest of my life to truly process it.
The book is a series of visions that Rick received about the final spiritual battle and of heaven. Most effective books have at most 20% of really awesome material and the rest is filler to help the reader process the 20% that is impactful (my own observation). However, because this book is purely a vision from God, there is absolutely no filler material and every piece is fantastically profound. I can’t comprehend a lot of it yet…it is still so new.
The part of the book that so far has been the most convicting and humbling was the part when Rick entered heaven, interacted with those there and with Jesus. I have never been so convicted, and yes that is redundant but there is no other word to describe. There are those who were great reformers in the Church, who impacted thousands or millions through their organizations for the Gospel, and even highlighted one of the greatest writers of all time (no names, of course). These people had such great success, and we would say for the Kingdom, here on earth but were among the lowest rank in heaven because the inner focus of their lives and the way they used (or abused) their influence led themselves and others away from Christ. They had sought to promote themselves and had not promoted Jesus. They would spend the rest of eternity with the privilege of being in God’s presence, but were destined to only observe His glory from a distance. They were called by Jesus to be Kings in His Kingdom, but because of their selfishness and pride were reduced to the outskirts of His glory.
I felt like my heart had been exposed. I love Jesus, but my heart has not been clothed in the humility that I must have to stand in the presence of Jesus. I have been praying that my life might make a difference, but had still been measuring my success by worldly standards. I have been driven by the desire to make an impact for the Kingdom rather than by my intense and insatiable love for Jesus. In fact, that I would want to be great in any way is a dangerous place to be. Truly, it is Christ who exalts us. We must humble ourselves. There is no other way, and in the end any pride that we have will destroy us and others who depend on and look to our example for salvation.
I realized that my life can be lived for no other purpose than to point others to Jesus. There is nothing else in this life that matters. I will write, but I make no apologies about the fact that I write only about Jesus and His goodness and for His glory. I will care for the orphans and seek healing for those broken by sin because my God sends me, but not for the great impact that I might have; I do it because my love for Jesus cannot help but overflow; because true worship of the King of Kings is the only remedy for the brokenness in this world. It is not only my passion; it is my ABSOLUTE OBSESSION to look upon Jesus and to never deviate from His gaze.
When Rick approached Jesus, he had many experiences. One of them was when it said that Jesus had wiped away the tears from the eyes of everyone else in heaven but His own. As a tear fell from His face, He caught it in a cup and handed it to Rick to drink. The taste was more bitter than anything he had ever tasted and caused a sorrow so great that a river of weeping erupted from Rick’s eyes. He understood the desperation of Jesus for those who are lost. Rick looked out over the great room of heaven and observed that even though there were millions there, they only occupied a small portion of the room. Jesus shared His passion that His house might be full. He commissioned Rick to go out to rescue the prisoners, to rescue those He dearly loves. What greater calling COULD THERE EVER BE? That is my calling. That is your calling. Yet, I do not write this for you. I write this because I cannot keep it inside…I cannot contain this passion, this sorrow, this desperation.
Looking into the eyes of Jesus, there is no fear or impossibility. These things don’t even matter. All that matters is the love that sends us…the sorrow of Christ that drives us to not stop until His great desire is fulfilled. When I look into His eyes, there is absolutely nothing I would not do for Him, and I sense that there is not much that I will not do for Him. It is my great joy to do it all.
Anything that I write would be lame in comparison to all I hear God speaking to my heart, so I pray that my life might write a story of humility that is deserving of His smile. I pray that every single moment would point others away from me and to Christ. I pray that the attitude of my heart would be one of intimacy with my Jesus. What matters here on earth is totally flipped in heaven. What is temporary is totally different than what is eternal. I will live for eternity. I will live to worship Jesus. I will live to carry His name in this world by His GRACE and in His strength. His grace is all that I could ever boast about.