By David Stahl

If we are feeling spiritually empty it may be the Lord’s intention for us to feel this way. The Lord often removes the old to make room for the new when we are about to enter into a new season, thus, “Blessed are the poor in spirit: for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.” (Matthew 5:3) What a painful truth to wrap our mind and heart around, but. rather than being discouraged or complaining about our present struggles we should hold this sense of being dissatisfied (being spiritually empty) before the Lord in anticipation of a new and deeper spiritual experience which is beyond our present level of spirituality. Jesus shared these words with the multitudes that followed Him on what we call “the sermon on the mount.” Now some have made this message from God (was not a sermon) more than what it really was, but in reality all Jesus was doing was just ministering to the people who were trodden down with life, maybe suffering from persecution, and carrying many burdens. This is the best we can do when we minister just share our thoughts and heart with the people from the word that God gives us and do only those things directed by Him, anything else can be showmanship and can easily reach into manipulation. Often we can feel There is a fresh stirring of the Lord’s desire for us to become all that He would have us to be. We are hearing a new message, beyond anything that we have heard in the past. Our part is to be spiritually open and receptive. “He that has an ear, let him hear what the Spirit says to the churches…” (Revelation 3:22) Hearing here more by our spirit and not our audible ear. One thing I am learning is anything new I read from the Bible and hear from our other ministers it is best not to allow our old bias to squash it in our thoughts and spirit. It is best to hold it before the Lord (even if we do not understand it) and allow the Holy Spirit to shine His light of truth on it and our heart and when it is for us we will be able to understand it or the Holy Spirit will reveal the error in it. Can you image the thoughts and misunderstanding the people had (probably some the same folks at the sermon the mount) when Jesus said, “Verily, verily, I say unto you, Except ye eat the flesh of the Son of man, and drink his blood, ye have no life in you.” (John 6:53) Well if they had not continued to listen (held His words before them) they would not have had the opportunity to be saved and walk with Him. New does not always means bad, but make no mistake new most often means change and most people (especially Christians) do not like to change we are very happy in our old ways of understanding and doing things. Change is one of the hardest things for man to do when they have found success in doing things another way. We even make up sayings like, “if it is not broken then do not fix it.” Well it may not be broken, but it can be improved on and that is what God is looking for in our lives improvement the first time he speaks.
In the past there were times and places in which there was a substantial moving of the Spirit and many came to respond to the presence of the Lord. However, as soon as His presence lifted they left as their interest was in being blessed rather than in being changed. Funny how this can happen. As a small boy growing up in Pentecostal churches I remember moves of God where the Spirit of God (you knew it was not man originated) suddenly fell, but it has been some time since I have witnessed such a move of God. Two fast ones and slow one, announcements, take up the offering, about 15 – 20 minutes of good sermon (not a message from God), closing song, maybe altar call, and then blast out the door by 12:00 to beat the Baptists to our favorite cafeteria for lunch all directed by a service bulletin that nowhere says God can move when He wants. I hope this does not typify your service. Charles Haun (my teacher) told me a genuine move of God is 90% God and 10% man and the more man handles things the less of God is moving. When I was teenager living in West Virginia we use to attend a small Assembly of God Church in Wiley Ford. The Pastor was Howard Reckley how I loved this man. Well suddenly there was a move of God in the heart and lives of the 10 to 15 kids in the church. We would run down to the altar and praying hard weeping for hours. After school the first thing we would do before we went home was go to the church and spend time in prayer. God met us there in a great way, but the more we tried to formalize and orchestrate our getting together the less of the Spirit of God there seemed to be. Unannounced and in a sovereign way God came to us and the more we tried to do to get to Him the harder he was to be found until we loss interest in it all as you would expect of young teenagers. Many have experienced touches of a higher realm of worship and desire more, but it does not happen in the atmosphere of the worldly approaches (music, dance, lights, fog, drama, etc.) found within the present day Church. This limits us (which brings us to fulfillment and completion not freedoms and liberties) to praise (speaking words adoration to and about God) which can lift us into the higher realms of worship in the Spirit where we bow down, bring our head to the ground, or fall on our face before God which is the highest form of honor, respect, and love for God. I believe the Lord is beginning to unfold before us new levels of revelation as the age-to-come. Revelation as truth is never ours (it is owned by God, but shared with us) and is ever progressive. What I thought I knew (I did and it was real), but God opened another wrinkle, a new vein of understanding from that bit of broken bread to me. He is seeking to take us beyond our hearing sermons that relate to the past or to the future, but into the higher realm of prophetic revelation in which we are receiving a present living word for today. During the 1950’s, deeper-life Bible teachers like: John Wright Follette, A. W. Tozer, Walter Beuttler, and Oswald Chambers to name a few were criticized (there is always a price one will pay for revelation and for the greater revelation the greater the price) and judged because, as forerunners, they saw and understood that which was beyond was greater than what most were seeing or understanding in their day. As there were forerunners in that day there are those today who are reaching into the unknown who also must pay the price of not being understood. Now I am not saying I am a forerunner (probably not) as with John Wright Follette, A. W. Tozer, and Walter Beuttler I can think of others who have a greater revelation (in my most humblest of opinion) of understanding guys like Charles Haun, Wade Taylor, Bill Pepper, Jake Luffy to name a few. I hope you can name such great men in your life but please know when you say and do things that will require change by those who hear your words to come into a greater revelation the stones are coming your way. I think it was Oswald Chambers who said they build the monument to you in death from the stones they have thrown at you in life. They killed Jesus for telling the truth and for saying things for the people to hear. Still in John Chapter 6 we read, “Many therefore of his disciples, when they had heard this, said, This is an hard saying; who can hear it?.” (John 6:60) It was not the multitudes this time that followed Him, but now it was His disciples who spoke these words. Verses 61-62, “When Jesus knew in himself that his disciples murmured at it, he said unto them, Doth this offend you? 62 What and if ye shall see the Son of man ascend up where he was before? But look at Jesus’ reply to His disciples, “It is the spirit that quickeneth; the flesh profiteth nothing: the words that I speak unto you, they are spirit, and they are life. (John 6:63) Jesus was willing to receive the stones of murmuring to be the stone of stumbling unto their salvation. And is the servant greater than the Master?
There is a present urgency and need to present ourselves as being available to become a place of habitation for the presence and glory of the Lord, beyond anything that has previously been experienced or seen. This manifestation of His glory will impact the nations. Walter Beuttler said God told him if he builds God a temple He will inhabit it. May we pray together that we will rise above our present feeling of dissatisfaction, and be ready for that day.