SECURE SERVANTS

SECURE SERVANTS

“Jesus KNOWING
that the Father had given
all things into his hands,
and that he was come from God,
and went to God;
He riseth from supper,
and laid aside his garments;
and took a towel, and girded himself.
After that he poureth water into a basin,
and began to wash the disciples’ feet”

JOHN 13:3 – 5

Servanthood is directly related to our security in terms of relationship with God. Men who are insecure cannot, will not, ever touch upon the power of the HIS humility. “Jesus knowing” was the basis of HIS ability to serve and minister to others. HIS relationship with God was not determined by what HE did; HIS knowing of who HE was was not defined by the position HE took with other men. HE knew and was secure in HIS relationship with the FATHER. True ministry knows that the secret of the people of God flowing, moving and being empowered in their own ministrations of the risen Christ is directly related to each member being “rooted and grounded in the love of God”. Men may function in the gifts of the Holy Spirit but that is not true ministry. Ministry is that which flows from member to member because of relationship not gifting…

“From whom the whole body
fitly joined together
and compacted by that
which every JOINT supplieth,
according to the effectual working
in the measure of every part,
maketh increase of the body
unto the edifying of itself in love”

EPHESIANS 4:16

The Body of Christ is “fitly joined and supplied” by means of the joints which speak of relationship and love flowing from member to member. The Corinthian Church excelled in the operation of the Gifts of the Spirit, yet they were carnal and filled with strife and emulation even to the point of pitting one ministry above another. They did not realize that the true power of edification and ministry took place in serving one another in Christ. They did not see that the gifts, when they are not coupled with the character of the Son, could not produce ministry but could only express ministrations that (without the character of Christ) would not produce the unity and the love of God in the local church.

It is in each of us knowing and walking in the power of a safe and secure walk with God that we can serve one another in true love and power. King Saul was an insecure man, because his obedience was partial and his heart obstinate, and when he beheld the life of David and heard the singing of the maidens of the greater works of David his insecurity drove him to persecute and drive David away.

SECURITY can only be known by a walk of love and obedience for that is the revelation of HIM that alone will give us boldness in the Day of Judgment.

“Herein is our love made perfect,
that we may have boldness
in the day of judgment: because as he is,
so are we in this world”

I JOHN 4:17

Brian Troxel

STRONG HOPE FOR NOW

STRONG HOPE FOR NOW

“What I am doing you do not understand now”
JOHN 13:7

Can we trust that this is so in the now of our life? Is there a situation, a perplexity, a painful circumstance that seems to linger without any “proof” that there is an end in sight? Can we with the faith and trust of a child look to the unseen hand of God and believe that even in this HE IS AT WORK? His ways are higher, deeper and motivated by a love and desire to bring us to a greater relationship with HIM. He will not waste or squander the short and precious time that we have here. It is our part to behold HIS work and believe in the hidden hand of HIS wisdom to work for us “the exceeding, and eternal weight of glory” while we by faith walk in the circumstances before us.

“What I am doing you do not understand NOW”

This is the statement of a wise and gracious Father who is working, at this moment, to bring to pass HIS PURPOSES in our life. Though we may not yet see we believe that HE who knows us best loves us most! The clay must be firmly and painfully pressed and molded, the gold heated and tried in the furnace. The lukewarm heart must be subjected to circumstances to revive its warmth and passion for Him, the prodigal son “must come to himself”, and the fruitful branch must be pruned. All these things ARE FOR OUR BENEFIT AND LEARNING.

“What I AM DOING you do not understand now”

Can we see above the storm clouds that this is HIS HAND? Could Joseph possibly grasp that his “brothers” selling him into the hands of rough and heathen men was God’s “DOING”? From God’s perspective HE was sending a man into Egypt, (Psalm 105:17) to one day be the means of deliverance to these same brothers. From the misery and drudgery of slavery and prison rose a wise and tested PRINCE; one whom the fires, darkness and testing did not destroy but were actually servants of the MOST HIGH GOD.

“For You, O God, hast proved us: you have tried us, as silver is tried.
You brought us into the net; You laid affliction upon our loins.
Thou hast caused men to ride over our heads;
we went through fire and through water:
but you have brought us out into a wealthy place”

PSALM 66:10 – 12

A wealthy Christian life is one that is going through the processes of HIS LIFE. These are not ones who cry and despair of their poverty; they have discovered and have tasted of the wealthy place. Their waters fail not in drought; their resources are hidden and true. They are like trees that “bear fruit” in every season for their roots are drinking of the River of Life (Revelation 22:2). Let us not succumb to the present circumstances but let us in FAITH and TRUST believe in the ONE that says

“WHAT I AM DOING YOU DO NOT UNDERSTAND NOW,
BUT YOU WILL KNOW AFTER…”

JOHN 13:7

Brian Troxel

FAITHFULNESS

FAITHFULNESS

“The prophet that hath a dream, let him tell a dream;
and he that hath my word, let him speak my word faithfully.
What is the chaff to the wheat? saith the LORD.
Is not my word like as a fire? saith the LORD;
and like a hammer that breaketh the rock in pieces?”

JEREMIAH 23:28 – 29

Faithfulness to God is a rare commodity in our day; to simply give what has been given. Faithfulness means remaining faithful to HIM regardless of the response of those around us. To remain true to what we see and hear in our God, whether or not it is popular or convenient, is the essence of LIFE IN HIM. The truth of God is at its very core simple. It is not for the wise, the respected or the strong of this world… it is for the child like in heart. It is for those who are free from desiring respectability or the approval of men, for we have seen the vanity of our own heart and of those around us. To seek to honour HIM and be true to HIS heart and desire in the earth is FAITHFULNESS. To be free of ulterior motives, agendas and selfish pursuits and remain true to HIS purpose is FAITHFULNESS. Our portion is to give what we have received; to tell the dream, speak HIS WORD and DO HIS WILL. What a precious portion that is! This is the fellowship of and in the SON. To partake of HIS WILL in the speaking and the doing is the FELLOWSHIP OF LIFE; the exercise of my LIFE in HIS. Blessed are those who are faithful for they SHALL reap even though now the fields seem barren, the companions of the way few and the skies grey. The HARVEST IS COMING! Let us not grow weary but be encouraged in the doing, speaking and walking for our God is faithful! We cannot reap tomorrow unless we sow, speak and toil in the fields today. Men who are faithful are thus because they know that GOD is faithful.

“Who then is a faithful and wise servant,
whom his lord hath made ruler over his household,
to give them meat in due season?
Blessed is that servant,
whom his lord when he cometh shall find so DOING

MATTHEW 24:45 – 46

Brian Troxel

BLESSED ARE THE PURE IN HEART

PURE IN HEART

PART ONE

“Blessed are the pure in heart
for they shall see God”

MATTHEW 5:8

The heart of a man is the lens through which he is able to see God. Purity of heart is THE ESSENTIAL quality that enables us to behold HIM. The Blood of Jesus reconciles us to a place of relationship. Faith brings us to the place of INTERACTING with HIM by producing within us an obedience that is the means to the reality of a PURE HEART.

“Seeing ye have purified your souls in obeying the truth through
the Spirit unto unfeigned love of the brethren”

Romans 1:1

We desire growth and change. We desire truth and reality. We want to SEE JESUS. We fill ourselves with teachings, books, seminars and conferences which can all be good things, but without PURITY OF HEART we still will not be ABLE to see HIM. This is not some impossible standard for which we strive to please God in the hope that HE will grant us a glimpse of HIS wonder and glory. It is simply that we are UNABLE to see HIM without a PURE HEART. HE stood in the streets of Jerusalem, HE walked the common roads of Israel, HE healed the sick, HE spoke as no man ever spoke, HE walked as no man ever walked and YET they saw HIM not.

“He was in the world, and the world was made by him,
and the world knew him not. He came unto his own,
and his own received him not”

I JOHN 1:10 – 11

Nothing is so blinding as a religious agenda mingled with the deception of self seeking, self serving and self loving. A man full of himself not only has no room for God, he is blind to everything that is around him. Everything is weighed and measured by how things will affect his well being and his purposes. There is no ability to be objective for everything is interpreted from the standpoint of SELF. This condition produces a life that is easily offended, that needs to control its environment, and one that ceases to grow and develop in its relationship with God.

“But we all, with open face beholding as in a glass the glory of the Lord,
are changed into the same image from glory to glory,
even as by the Spirit of the Lord”

II CORINTHIANS 3:18

The key to BEHOLDING HIS Glory is that we come with “open face”. This denotes repentance and obedience with nothing to hide. It is in that BEHOLDING that we are then changed. There can be no change within a man except by the SEEING of HIM. Not only is purity of heart the window through which we see HIM, it also bears the pronouncement of blessing!

“BLESSED are the pure in heart,
for they shall see God.”

MATTHEW 5:8

Brian Troxel

THAT WE MAY GROW Part Two

THAT WE MAY GROW

PART TWO

“But speaking the truth in love, may GROW up into him in all things,
which is the head, even Christ”

EPHESIANS 4:15

Men who have no desire to know the truth about themselves really do not desire the truth at all. Truth can only reveal the LIVING ONE and in the revelation of HIM we are immediately aware of our own condition. His Word is living and sharp and those who minister it faithfully must not rob it of its force and power. If we are to develop and grow up INTO HIM who is the HEAD of this glorious Body it is imperative that we speak the TRUTH. Without TRUTH, what do we have? Without TRUTH I am left to my own opinions and concepts. Without Truth I have no hope of ever GROWING into HIS LIKENESS. If we negate “speaking the truth” to one another we are left with a religion that has no fire, no strength or conviction and one that produces nothing valid or noteworthy. How can we expect to GROW if we do not have faithful brothers and sisters sharing truth in love to one another?

We live in a time when truth is watered down. In so doing it is robbed of its power and ability to make men and women instruments of righteousness and power. People withdraw from any expression that brings them to places of decision and choice. It is far easier to live with a religion that makes no demands on our personal lives. The ministration of TRUTH brings us to the awful realization of the call to “pick up our own cross” and follow HIM. It makes no allowances for self. It will not compromise with the desire to “save our lives”. It is come to make us in thought, word and deed a living expression of HIM who alone is true.

“For everyone who does evil hates the light and does not come to the light,
lest his deeds should be exposed”

JOHN 3:20

King David, however, was a man after God’s Heart; this is a cry from one WHO LOVED THE TRUTH!

“Let the righteous strike me; It shall be a kindness.
And let him rebuke me; it shall be as excellent oil;
Let my head not refuse it”

PSALM 141:5

It is a cry from one who knew he NEEDED the truth. He was interested in becoming true. It is a DAY for speaking truth, doing truth and loving truth. The people of God need to so interact in truth that we MAY GROW UP INTO HIM becoming one BODY IN CHRIST for there is only ONE HEAD!

Brian Troxel

THAT WE MAY GROW PART ONE

THAT WE MAY GROW

PART ONE

“Therefore, laying aside all malice, all deceit, hypocrisy, envy,
and all evil speaking, as newborn babes,
desire the pure milk of the word,
that you may GROW thereby”

I PETER 2:1 – 2

What we do, how we interact with others has a great determination on how we grow and what we become in HIM. We cannot hold malice toward a brother in Christ and expect to grow in our relationship with HIM. We cannot be deceitful and expect to grow in truth. We cannot say one thing yet live our lives in another and expect to become an authentic expression of HIM. To be envious of another is to be unthankful for the calling that God has placed upon our own life. There is a great amount of good and Godly teaching in the Body of Christ today, but despite this, unless we lay aside these evil things there will be no actual growth or development personally. There can be no going on without a leaving behind the works and attitudes of the unregenerate man.

We think that we can hold on to unforgiveness and offences and yet grow in the “grace and the knowledge” of our Lord Jesus Christ! If HE is gracious, forgiving, merciful and kind and I act contrary to that Nature how can I say that I know HIM? To think I can say to another brother “I have no need of you” and yet somehow believe that I will continue to GROW in HIM is an absurdity. True growth is only known BY the ministration of HIS nature and character in our lives according to that which we have received. If I do not give of what HE has given me I can be sure I will stop growing in the true knowing of HIM.

“Blessed are the merciful: for they shall obtain mercy”
MATTHEW 5:7

In order for me to grow in mercy I must be merciful. In order for me to develop in any of the qualities of HIS character I must express them in my daily life. We receive by giving, and we develop by being exercised in HIS LIFE. How I regard my brother, how I interact with my wife, my children and all others, whether it be in thought or deed will EFFECT and DETERMINE my own personal growth in HIM.

To hold on to the things of the Old Man
will prevent us from growing into the NEW!

Brian Troxel

NEITHER DO I CONDEMN THEE

“NEITHER DO I CONDEMN THEE…”

In the rush of our daily lives we are often in such haste that when we do get a time of quiet there are multiple voices ready to accuse us of many things. The list is as endless as the day is long. Even here, as the woman is brought before the Holy One, her accusers are the loudest bellowing out their demands for judgment and wrath. What a picture of that which transpires in spiritual places! Yet in the midst of all the accusations there arises ONE who not only scatters the accusers but speaks words of power, words of comfort, and words of release for our troubled souls. “Neither do I condemn thee…”! Let these words sink deep down into the depths of our being. May they ring with the truth of our Glorious God and speak power to lift the trampled soul lost in sin’s misery. “Neither do I condemn thee…” Where else can we hear such comfort? Where else will Mercy’s steam flow but from the heart of such Love!

Let the trumpet sound… “There is no condemnation…” Let the weary hear and rise up with a new vision of our Reigning King. Let us lay aside every weight of sin and be captured by the beauty of such Royalty. Who can resist this Mercy or stay in sin’s grip when such words of release are spoken? Not only does He lift us up to heavenly places, but he washes us in His own blood and sends forth His word to heal us. He invites us to walk in His Father’s house not as an invited guest but as a child of His own begetting! Let us rise as those who have been captivated by such Love to run the race that is set before us. Looking unto Jesus….!

Brian Troxel

MAKE ME UNDERSTAND THE WAY…

“Make me understand the WAY of Your precepts”

PSALM 119:27

The Hebrew Word used here for precepts is best translated instruction. It is a word that is always in the plural and is only used in the Psalms. We see here that the instruction of the Lord is not a teaching as we in our day understand it; it is a communication of something far deeper. The Psalmist here is asking God to help him understand the WAY of His instruction. True Godly instruction will cause us to realize that it is only known by walking in the WAY of that instruction. The WAY communicates to us that there is a walk involved in HIS teachings. This is not a doctrine but a WAY that brings us to the one who is LIFE; the very LIFE that we long for.

It is crucial for us to know HIM AS THE WAY, so that we may come to know HIM AS THE TRUTH, and in knowing HIM as the TRUTH, we will then find HIM as THE LIFE!

“I AM the Way, the Truth and the Life…”

The progression of our growth and development in Him cannot be short circuited. The error of this hour is in thinking that by gathering to ourselves knowledge that we will somehow know what truth is. But TRUTH IS A PERSON not an accumulation of data. We see many steeped in teaching by which there is a “form of righteousness” revealed; but within the life of the individual there is no POWER to actually be changed and transformed. This is religion at its worst. It will not produce the radically transformed life. It will not produce original expressions of the Holy Spirit. It can only manufacture a cloned religious expression that is manageable by the religious system; sterile, safe and impotent in terms of turning this world upside down with the powerful expressions of the RISEN CHRIST!

Lord, Bring us back to the simplicity, originality and power of your WAY. Bring us back to the ministration of TRUTH where we are impacted with the LIVING WORD that cuts asunder our lives even unto the thoughts and intents of our hearts; that reveals our NEED to be cleansed and purified by the FIRE of your PRESENCE! SAVE us from meetings that are predictable and “safe”, SAVE us from the status quo, SAVE us from obligations to men and bring us into the FEAR OF THE LORD!

“UNTO THEM THAT LOOK FOR HIM
SHALL HE APPEAR…”

Brian Troxel

FAITH AND THE CITY OF GOD

FAITH AND THE CITY OF GOD

“Blessed is the man whose strength is in You,
Whose heart is set on pilgrimage”

PSALM 84:5

Faith is the DYNAMIC within an individual that produces motion and quest. Its very inner workings within a heart must birth a journey. For in its sway, there is communicated to the people of God a clarity of the HEAVENLY to such an extent that this world and all of its offerings pale in comparison to the treasures of God in Christ. Faith can never be static. It has one desire, one purpose; to make real in us the Character, the Beauty and the Power of our Risen Christ. Men who become “comfortable” in a teaching, a form or a method have not seen the City of God. Even Abraham, while living in the Land of Promise, was a pilgrim for his heart was set on the City of God.

“By faith he sojourned in the land of promise,
as in a strange country… for he looked
FOR A CITY which hath foundations,
whose builder and maker is God”

HEBREWS 11:9 – 10

It is in beholding the Heavenly City that we see and understand the contradiction to what we see in the earth. Faith must take us from the quest of our own personal pursuits in Christ to the place of seeking the welfare of the City (the corporate) of God. Nehemiah, though very well situated in the “world” of his day, was exceedingly burdened for the condition and state of the City of God in that day. His heart was broken and burdened for the CITY, not himself. He risked everything (even his life) to see the City of God rebuilt. How much more should we seek out the welfare of His House in these last days? How can we remain quiet? How can we not cry out as we see His house divided, secularized, scandalized and operating as a house of merchandise? Jesus was moved to the cleansing of the temple because His Father’s house was to be a house of prayer not a place of marketing “spiritual things”. The Church of Jesus Christ IS NOT AN EARTHLY ENTITY; it is a spiritual house. It is a Body (singular). It is to function and act like it is singular. The true ministry within it owns nothing and builds nothing for themselves. Their heart is to see the people of God function within their own gifts and callings and to see and ensure the UNITY OF THE FAITH WITHIN HIS HOUSE (Ephesians 4:11 – 13). Men may doubt and mock the reality of such a thing. Faith responds and says THE SON OF GOD PRAYED FOR SUCH A THING IN THE EARTH HOW CAN IT NOT BE?

“…that they all may be one, as You, Father, are in Me, and I in You;
that they also may be one in Us,
that the world may believe that You sent Me”

JOHN 17:21

Brian Troxel

ABIDE

ABIDE

“And now, little children, abide in Him…”
1JOHN 2:28

The ability of a branch to produce fruit is not resident within the branch itself, but by its attachment to the vine. The branch simply must draw life from the vine. Faith is the connection; it is the only medium through which His precious life and power flow. All the goodness and mercies of our God are bound up within the wonder of a living faith. Faith is the victory (1John 5:4), Faith is the means by which we live (Habakkuk 2:4), Faith is the means by which we are Justified (Romans 5:1), Faith is the means by which we walk in this world (2Corinthians 5:7), Faith is the means by which we please God (Hebrews 11:6), and Faith is the means by which we live an obedient and overcoming life (Hebrews 11:33).

That is why we are exhorted…

“But you, beloved, building yourselves up on your most holy faith”
JUDE 1:20

Holy Faith, Living Faith, is the cornerstone of a life that lives, and MOVES and has its very being within the Son. Let us today Abide in Him!

Brian Troxel