How are you? I’m well.
Earlier this year I meditated the Scriptures on Jesus’ telling John, the beloved disciple to look after Mary, His mother.
Now there stood by the cross of Jesus His mother, and His mother’s sister, Mary the wife of Clopas, and Mary Magdalene. When Jesus therefore saw His mother, and the disciple whom He loved standing by, He said to His mother, “Woman, behold your son!” Then He said to the disciple, “Behold your mother!” And from that hour that disciple took her to his own home. (John 19:25~27)
Every time when I read the Scriptures, I thought how dear the mother Mary was to Jesus. She was His earthly mother, yet she was also one of His beloved daughters, as Jesus is God, our Lord. And he entrusted His dear mother and daughter to John, His beloved disciple who leaned on His chest and felt His heartbeat. This time when reading the story, I became very interested to read the verse, “And from that hour that disciple took her to his own home.” Indeed, they immediately obeyed His command. Then, it dawned on me that Jesus had half-brothers like James and Jude who wrote the epistles in the New Testament. Wouldn’t it be kind of humiliating to them, if mother Mary went to John’s home and was taken care of by him? Especially in those times and in the Middle Eastern culture? Imagine that your father or your mother lives with your friend or your cousin and is taken care of by him or her, while you are around. Interestingly, both Mary and John were very obedient. Later, I looked up David Pawson’s book, Unlocking the Bible and I found it interesting that he wrote extra-biblical records about Mary and John:
John was one of the twelve apostles called by Jesus during his earthly ministry, and the only one to live to an old age. Extra-biblical records state that he looked after Mary, the mother of Jesus, in Ephesus until she died. He too died there.
Pawson, David. Unlocking the Bible . HarperCollins Publishers. Kindle Edition.
It seemed that Mary and John not only obeyed the Lord immediately, without a second thought, but kept on obeying Him until Mary’s death. It reminded me of the picture I saved on my mobile phone. It was Doug Addison’s words, “Like Mary – the mother of Jesus – God may be calling you to something extraordinary. It could be that He’s still waiting on your absolute, undoubting ‘yes’” I thought that to the mother Mary, obeying His commandment to go to John’s home wouldn’t be a big deal, compared with her undoubting yes to become the mother of the Lord as a virgin.
Then Mary responded, saying, “Yes! I will be a mother for the Lord! As his servant, I accept whatever he has for me. May everything you have told me come to pass.” And the angel left her. (Luke 1:38 TPT)
Imagine what risk she might have in that era. If she had been found to be pregnant before marriage and misunderstood as an adulterer, she would have been stoned to death! Yet, she said, “Yes!” or “Let it be to me according to your word.” No wonder she said in the wedding where Jesus turned water into wine, “His mother said to the servants, ‘Whatever He says to you, do it.’ (John 2:5)”
Friend, are you willing to obey whatever the Lord tells you to do? Even when it sounds against the grain, would you totally trust Him and obey Him? You might have social pressures and even your closed ones wouldn't understand you, when you obey Him. To some, it could be leaving their hometowns and move to other towns or nations. To others, it could be leaving their current jobs. Maybe, He could say to you, “This is your mother!” or “This is your wife!” or “This is your son!”, entrusting His beloved child to your care. Can you serve one sheep for Him?
Friend, the only thing that decides the foundation of your house, i.e. the rock or the sand is obeying.
Friend, I would like to close my writing by sharing what Neville Johnson wrote in his book, Secrets of the Kingdom (volume 2). I pray this speaks to you and you and I always say “Yes!” to Him, even when we don’t understand. Have a bliss!
GOD WANTED IMPLICIT OBEDIENCE
God wants people who are easy to give a command to, easy to work with, easy to be intreated. Saul was constantly motivated by fear which made it difficult for him to obey God. Abraham, on the other hand, was easy to work with, so he became God’s friend and God shared His wisdom with him. It is interesting to note that when God spoke to Abraham about circumcision in Genesis 17, He was making a covenant with Abraham. He gave the rite of circumcision to seal it. God was very specific in His instructions:
GENESIS 17:10, 12 10. This [is] my covenant, which ye shall keep, between me and you and thy seed after thee; Every man child among you shall be circumcised. 12. And he that is eight days old shall be circumcised among you, every man child in your generations, he that is born in the house, or bought with money of any stranger, which [is] not of thy seed.
Specifically, on the 8th day. Abraham could have had an attitude that would cause him to do less than God required. He could have said that the 6th day is more convenient or perhaps the 7th – it won’t make any difference. God said the 8th day and didn’t explain why. What Abraham did not know was that the blood-clotting agent does not form in a baby’s blood until the 8th day; many of the babies could have bled to death if they were circumcised before the 8th day. I have heard Christians say, “I need to understand before I can obey God.” If that was true, faith would not be needed. God wants people who are easy to be intreated, who will obey Him without argument or resistance or excuses. It is always wise to obey, and to obey without question, this quality, this pillar or foundation has to be established in our hearts. It is always wise to obey God even though you don’t understand why; it could save your life in the end times.
“But why do you call Me ‘Lord, Lord,’ and not do the things which I say? Whoever comes to Me, and hears My sayings and does them, I will show you whom he is like: He is like a man building a house, who dug deep and laid the foundation on the rock. And when the flood arose, the stream beat vehemently against that house, and could not shake it, for it was founded on the rock. But he who heard and did nothing is like a man who built a house on the earth without a foundation, against which the stream beat vehemently; and immediately it fell. And the ruin of that house was great.” (Luke 6:46~49)
How are you? Hope you had or are having a good day, today?
Today, I would like to share part of some episodes I had in this May. My mom went to the emergency room in the big hospital in early May and was hospitalized for a few days. After that, in the middle of May, she went to the emergency room again and was hospitalized for a week. In the two hospitalization, she was diagnosed as hyponatremia and it seemed to cause her to vomit at each time before she had to go to the emergency room. Each time in the emergency room and during her stay in the hospital, there were so many challenges, coupled with the Covid-19. In her first visit to the emergency room, the hospital found I had a 37.7 degree of fever. So, they didn’t allow me to come in until I was tested negative.
In the second visit to the emergency room, my mom’s blood pressure went up to over 230 and she had a fever, while she was being treated. Due to her fever, she had to get the Covid-19 test immediately and she had to be isolated in the emergency room, until she was tested negative. As she was old, weak and almost unconscious, the staffs in the emergency room allowed me to be with her in an isolated room. So, I wore a special gown that the hospital staffs wore against the Covid-19 and was sitting next to mom’s bed for 5~6 hours till the test result came out. After she was tested negative, she was moved to other room in the emergency room and she got better. And in almost 24 hours since we came to the emergency room, we were told that she would be moved to the general room in the hospital. So, I checked in for her hospitalization and my Covid-19 test, as I should stay with her. In the check-in counter, I overheard the conversation of the check-in counter employee and a customer, the family member of the patient in the emergency room. It sounded like there was no available room in the hospital so that the patients in the emergency room to be hospitalized should stand by, not knowing how long it would take. The customer sounded very angry and complained a lot to the employee in the check-in counter. I would understand that many hospitals lack in rooms under the pandemic and I also heard the same report from the employee when I checked in.
When I came back to mom’s bed in the emergency room, after checking-in, the kind nurse who was in charge of mom said to me that he had seen the rooms in the general hospital usually on high demand on Monday and Tuesday during the week. And it was Monday night. I was extremely tired after all the shock and tension over the last 24 hours. Now mom seemed to get better, having a light sleep on the bed and I needed some sofa bed so badly, but in the emergency room, I could only take a seat on a chair next to mom’s bed. Then, I overheard the conversation in front of mom’s room. The patient in that room seemed to have a doctor friend there and he was able to be moved to the general room soon. At that moment, I was reminded of Walter Beuttler’s testimony in his book, The Manifest Presence of God:
When I was a student in Bible School, I was talking to the Superintendent of the Denomination to which I belonged. Later, his son came into the room and asked, “What will you do when you leave?” I had no home, as my family lived in Germany, and could only reply, “I do not know.” Then he asked what ministry I thought I would have. Again, I could only say, “I do not know.” Then he said, “I am glad I am not like you. I know people at the top, and I will have a big church.” When he left the room, he slammed the door and it felt like a shot from a gun going through my heart. It really hurt because I had nowhere to go. I dropped to my knees and prayed a very simple prayer, “Father, did You hear what he said?” As I prayed this, in a flash of revelation, the Lord quickened these thoughts to me. “It is true that he knows people at the top. But it is also true that I am your Father, and that I am at the top of all those who are at the top. And, I am your personal superintendent.” I lifted my hands and said, “Father, thank You for being Who You are. This day I acknowledge You as my personal superintendent.” Years later, while in Rio De Janeiro, I was told that this fellow was working as a butcher, and he did not have the big church he thought he would have.
Beuttler, Walter. The Manifest Presence of God: The Spiritual Journey of Walter Beuttler (pp. 28-29). Deeper Lift Press. Kindle Edition.
And I said to my Father who is at the top of all those who are at the top, “Father, I have no connection, but You! You have my back! I know You would work for us. Jesus, please do something for us.” After the prayer, I had such a confidence in my heart that He would make a way for us and nothing is impossible with Him. Soon enough, our kind nurse came to me, to share the good news that we would move to a room soon. Even when I heard the discouraging reports around, I had such a powerful Father at the top!
Over the last 24 hours, I had no energy and no time to read the Bible and pray, but I kept some verses from Psalms 34 in my heart:
When I had nothing, desperate and defeated,
I cried out to the Lord and he heard me,
bringing his miracle-deliverance when I needed it most.
The angel of Yahweh stooped down to listen as I prayed,
encircling me, empowering me, and showing me how to escape.
He will do this for everyone who fears God.
Drink deeply of the pleasures of this God.
Experience for yourself the joyous mercies he gives
to all who turn to hide themselves in him.
Yet when holy lovers of God cry out
to him with all their hearts,
the Lord will hear them and come to rescue them
from all their troubles. (The Passion Translation)
Indeed, He stooped down to listen to my cry and He delivered me from the troubles. After mom was hospitalized in a shared room for 5 patients, I was able to lie on the sofa bed, just thanking the Lord. Then, we spent two nights in that shared room, and I got to realize that the room belonged to orthopedics department. Indeed, when the hospital lacked in room, our Heavenly Father gave the shared room in the other department. Then, I was so exhausted in the shared room, after answering mom’s endless demand and hallucinations as well as hearing other patients’ screaming after their orthopedics surgery. I lacked in sleep and I got so weary. And I asked the nurse whether I could find a private room and she said she would check it out. Again, I prayed to our Heavenly Father. Amazingly, we were told to move to a private room in the internal medicine department where my mom should belong to. Every time when I cried out to Him for help, He always stooped down to listen to me. When we entered in the private room, I was even more thankful. From the window, I was able to see my middle school, high school and university campus. My mom was happy with looking at them with her old memory. As we had a TV in the private room, I turned on her favorite news channel, on mute, while playing out Korean hymns on my mobile phone. Then, the next day, I was able to find two Christian channels on TV so that I turned on one Christian channel, hoping mom would listen to the Words of God. But you know what? I heard the pastor preaching about honoring the parents! I smiled at the sense of humor of our Father. The other night, I was so weary, looking at mom’s trying to untie the belts around her wrists and feet tied her bed. She had to be tied after she pulled off the catheter and the intravenous cord for the treatment a few times. She was successful a few times in untying her wrist belts so that I had to tie her wrists time and again during the night. After all those weary battles over night, the message from our Heavenly Father was “Honor your parents!” and the pastor said, “The best way to honor our parents is to be with them.” I couldn’t agree with him more.
I shared part of the episodes only. There are so much more on the goodness of our Father from mom’s incidents, including meeting very nice doctors and nurses and so on. Friend, whatever circumstances you are in, I would like to encourage you to turn your eyes on Jesus and ask our good good Father. What the enemy intends for evil, He uses for good. He stoops down to you when you cry out to Him and He would say to you, “My child, I have your back!” Isn’t that awesome that we have all the powerful and always good and righteous Father at the top? When we have Him, we have everything!
Have a bliss!
So why would I fear the future?
How are you? I’m well.
Today, I would like to continue on House Church and share a series of dreams that I think were the Lord’s confirmation on the direction.
On March 29, I had three dreams. In one dream, I saw a couple taking a wedding photo in a studio. I watched them from behind and from the side of the couple. The couple looked a bit poor and shabby, though they were dressed up for the wedding photo. The bride was a Chinese in her late 40’s or early 50’s and the bridegroom was a Caucasian in his late 50’s or early 60’s. Then, I looked at the couple from the front, facing them. Unexpectedly, the bridegroom rolled up his sleeves and he exposed his muscles in the arms, smiling. I was surprised to see his arms look like Popeye’s. When I first saw him from the side and from the back, he looked very thin and didn’t look buffed at all. But he turned out to be very buffed and strong. Then, I saw a little son of the Chinese bride just come out of his mother’s wedding dress, as if he had hidden himself inside his mother’s dress. The Chinese, Asian boy looked 5~6 years of old.
In another dream, I think I was with my mom and my sister. It seemed that there was a construction or remodeling for a house underway. And I can’t recall whether it was my house or someone else’s, but I was waiting for someone to deliver the key of the house. Then, a man came to me and said that I already had the key of the house with me. So, I looked at my wallet.
In another dream, I was in a restaurant. I was invited to a party and it was for the couple to have a wedding soon. I saw my ex-colleagues, classmates and friends in there. Then, I went upstairs to get my table, while there were still some people on the tables on the first floor. I wore a white twill winter coat and inside the coat, the white short skirt in the same material. They looked luxurious. I got a compliment for my suits from one of my friends and she asked me where I got them and how much they were. I was hesitant to answer her, as they were really expensive, and I thought she would be surprised at the price. Then, I saw a guest, or a bride come upstairs, riding on a horse. And I got to know anyone could pick a horse on the first floor and ride on it in the restaurant. I wanted to ride on a horse so much, but I thought my short skirt was not suitable for the horse-riding so that I had to give it up. And I was upset.
When I awoke and journaled down the dreams, I felt the Lord confirms the direction to me through them. I interpret the wedding couple in the first dream as a house church. They didn’t look rich nor glamorous on the surface. But the bridegroom actually had a good build. I was reminded of what the late Pastor Neville Johnson said: there would be small, but strong churches in the last days, which are house churches. And I interpreted that the Chinese bride symbolized the strong house churches in China, that have been enduring the persecution. And the Chinese bride has a fruit, which is quite mature like 5~6 years old, not a new-born baby. I interpret the Caucasian bridegroom would mean house churches to be brought to the West in the days to come.
And I interpret the 2nd dream. I was waiting for someone to deliver the key of the house, which would be the key to the revival. The key to house the glory of God. But it turned out that I already had the key with me. It would mean we already have the key with us. We can start house churches with our family, our friends, co-workers or neighbors. His presence is always with us when we gather together in His name and we love one another. The latter rain doesn’t necessarily come from traditional churches’ night gatherings or revival meetings in the stadium, but from our home.
Later in the day when I read “How We Began” that Pastor John Fenn wrote in the Church without Walls International website, I felt my interpretation of the dream was in line with what the Lord spoke to Pastor John:
“Many are running to and fro asking, ‘Where is the next move, what is the next season of the Spirit?’, and I say to you it is under their very noses. They stumble at the supernatural work in their midst and refuse to humble themselves and be taught, because they seek the sensational and that which appeals to the outward man. They fail to recognize the true move of God because it must be spiritually discerned.”
Related to the house under remodeling or construction in the dream, I was also able to be reminded of what the late John Paul Jackson wrote on the house dream:
God is interested in every detail of your life and wants you to see your life from His perspective. He is making improvements and repairs to your “house” all the time. Sometimes He will show you the upgrades—what you’ll become—in a dream so you won’t give up during the remodel.
Jackson, John Paul. Top 20 Dreams: What the 20 Most Common Dreams are Telling You (p. 40). Streams Ministries. Kindle Edition.
In the 3rd dream, I interpret riding on a horse is moving in the Spirit, in the mighty power of the Holy Spirit. I wanted to move in the mighty move of the Holy Spirit, but my expensive formal dress-code hindered me from riding on a horse. I interpret the expensive formal suits represented the legalism in the traditional churches. They might look good and they are paid compliments for luxurious materials. But they are not suitable for the Spirit to move in His way. I recall a Korean missionary’s sharing a story, which was recorded in a Korean church, the host. He said that he felt uncomfortable in preaching in a traditional church setting, like the host church. Now in many churches in Korea, there are multiple services on Sunday so that he is requested by the host to finish his preaching within 30 or 40 minutes. Otherwise, they would have problems in parking lots and in next time-slot services and they would be like dominos. So, the missionary said that it is very difficult to move in the Holy Spirit in that setting. Sometimes, we must wait until the Holy Spirit comes and fills the room with His presence. And he shared his testimony back in Mongolia. A few kids in his ministry said to him, “Brother, we will meet for prayer and worship on this Friday!” As he had a schedule conflict, he gave the kids the key of the small room in his ministry, saying they could go ahead, but he couldn’t join them. The next day, the kids came to him, so excited, and said to him, “Brother, you should have been there with us. We were so amazed by the Holy Spirit. The lightnings were here and there in the room!”
I’m not saying we should pursue the supernatural manifestation. Even when we don’t feel or see anything, the Holy Spirit is always with us and we must bear the fruits of the Holy Spirit in our life. Yet, I’m trying to say that the traditional church settings and the legalism in church actually hinder the Holy Spirit from moving in the midst of us. They are manmade, not Spirit-made.
I hope the interpretation of my dreams would resonate with you and it would encourage you to pray over the direction on your life, too. I think I would share more stories related to House Church in my future blogs, believing that we must prepare for the times to come.
Have a bliss!
But you are a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, His own special people, that you may proclaim the praises of Him who called you out of darkness into His marvelous light; (1 Peter 2:9)