The Times They Are a-Changin’

As followers of Christ, we should be the happiest people on the planet! We have everything to live for. We have everything to shout for. We have everything to be thankful for. We have Jesus! What could be better y’all?

In the early nineteen sixties, a famous ragamuffin poet named Bob Dylan penned the song “The Times They Are A-Changin’.” As we approach the year 2017, it becomes appropriate for us to resurrect that same age old tune and proclaim, “Yes! The times they are a-changin’!” I love what the prophet Daniel received in a night vision.

“It is He (the Lord) who changes the times and epochs; (set seasons)
He removes kings and establishes kings;
He gives wisdom to wise men and knowledge to men of understanding.” (Dan. 2:21)

I can remember that sometime around 2007, the winds of change beginning to blow throughout the church. The sound of worship was changing. A new sound began to arise in worship across the land. We moved from celebratory songs like “My Hope is in You” into a more minor-key type worship that actually opened the door to a personal and intimate relationship with the Lord. Places like IHOP, Bethel and Jesus Culture emerged as forerunners in a new sound that ushered in a new season. With every new season comes a new sound. With great excitement and enthusiasm, we entered into that season not really knowing where it would lead but all the while hoping for more.
What did I learn? It wasn’t what I expected, but I did learn a valuable lesson.

With any new birth there must be a great travail. What do I mean?
Suffering, perseverance, conflict, disillusionment, testing, refinement, surrender, waiting but most of all, trust. The deep and profound kind of trust.

I had encountered Jesus and what he was asking me was this:

“Do you trust me? Do you trust me? Do you trust me?”

Without hesitation my reply was,
Explicitly…Exclusively…Completely.

What I didn’t know was that those words would be the ticket to the most heart-wrenching roller coaster ride I could have ever imagined. And like a drowning man, I have resurfaced, gasping for air, smiling again and all the better for it.
A word to the wise: be mindful what you pray. It might just lead you to a wild and scary roller coaster ride.

The good news is this, it is a new day. We are entering into a new season. The time for moaning is past. A new and unique sound, straight out of heaven is about to flood the land. The winds of heaven are blowing and a huge wave, like a tsunami is forming, carrying a new sound that will be overtaking and crashing down upon anyone who is humble and hungry enough to embrace it. Sadly though, history proves many become so comfortable in one season that they are reluctant to move forward into the next season. But, “Fear not little flock, for it your Father’s good pleasure to give you the kingdom.” (Luke 12:32) So in my Holy Spirit imagination I often picture myself journeying through the wilderness with the people of old; thousands of families just moving from place to place following the Glorious Cloud and the Radiant Light. As I journey to this desolate but wonderful place, my continuous prayer is:

Jesus, I want to stay right up front with You Lord so I can see what You are doing and so I can go where You are going. Help me to stay in perfect rhythm with You Lord!

So friends, a new season is upon us and I hope you can see the fire in my eyes and hear the passion in my voice as I lovingly whisper in your ear,
The time for moaning is past. It is a new day!
Let’s celebrate!
Let’s pick up the tempo!
Let’s take off the grave clothes and come alive again!
Let’s abandon our dignity, stomp our feet and begin to dance again…like David!
Let’s see if we can turn heaven’s head toward us!
Let’s make such a joyful sound that all of heaven and earth will stand up and take notice!

All movements born in God usually have small beginnings. It only takes one spark to start a fire. One small seed planted and watered can yield a mighty oak! Be the spark! Be the seed! I’ll leave you with this final thought from God’s Word. May it be etched upon your heart…

…but just as it is written, “Things which eye has not seen and ear has not heard, and have not entered the heart of man, all that God has prepared for those who love Him.” (1 Cor. 2:9)

As followers of Christ, we should be the happiest people on the planet! We have the greatest reason to be.

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