Art Katz talks of a place in God, a place of seeing as we are required to see, that will take absolute abandonment to His entire will for us, something beyond the repentance for our carnality and that in fact confronts our spirituality. Can we give up what we see as good, even wonderful in God, in order to go to the place He requires of us?
We see the outworking of this challenge in the case of Israel's official priesthood as they find Jesus Christ, the Messiah, a challenge to all that they hold to be utterly spiritual and therefore they have him killed to protect what they consider to be of God.
Are we facing such challenges today? I truly believe that many of us are, and have to learn to look at them in this light.
What does it mean to go 'outside the camp' - the place that Jesus went to be crucified?
How does it feel to be on the outside looking in - looking at what is apparently gloriously spiritual. Looking at people seeing apparent signs and wonders, receiving prophetic words that are passed around the Body as the word of the moment, and knowing that none of that is for you.
What is God doing when He begins to take people out beyond all that is familiar in God. Yes, outside the comfort and protection of the walls of the church. Outside the security of being part of a family in God, and doing what seems right and good in building up the Body of Christ.
What is God doing?
It is time to be prepared to be utterly surrendered to His will, reminding ourselves that our model is not the church, or its leaders, but Christ Himself. He was a threat to the church of the time that had become so structured and full of rules and regulations. Suddenly they were confronted with the love of God Himself and did not know what to do with Him!
What is He asking of me and of you? Is He asking that we lay down what is most dear, seemingly most good, in order to follow Him into something even better? Is He calling some outside the camp, to wait quietly, without voices or positions, for His instruction, His Word, His way, His truth, His very life itself?
Is this what it means to be separated unto Him? Is this what it means to give up everything for the sake of the One who gave up everything for us? Is this what it means to go outside the camp, so that something can be accomplished that can be accomplished no other way?
Perhaps there are more questions than answers right now, but they are most certainly questions that need to be asked, considered, and ultimately acted upon.
Grace, dear Jesus, grace, love, more grace, more love ....