We live in a society that bases its value on the number of Twitter followers, Instagram followers, or Facebook friends we have. I get friend requests every single week from “friends,” people I’ve never met. People will stop and ask me for my autograph, not because of my role in ministry but because of my role in the media. They will want me to sign ‘to my good friend,’ and I will say, but you aren’t my good friend!
One thing I love about following Jesus since I was led to the Lord 41 years ago is the chase. Paul says; “I must apprehend that which has apprehended me.” What does he mean? I remember when I was a child on the playground with my wife, and I would touch her and say, ‘tag you’re it,’ then she would chase me. You see, that is what God does; He tags us, He chases us. When you were lost, He came after you. That is why the old hymn of the faith says, The vilest offender who truly believes, that moment from Jesus His pardon receives. That’s why we sing songs about the blood. There is a fountain filled with blood, drawn from Emmanuel’s veins, and sinner’s plunge beneath that flood, lose all their guilty stains. We sing songs like this because, at that moment, the second we ask God into our lives and the Holy Spirit permeates our carnal flesh, all of a sudden, God now says to you, tag you’re it. Then the rest of your life it’s you chasing Him.
When you begin to understand your lonely place, when you begin to understand what God is doing in your life, and when you begin to understand ‘why am I going through what I am going through,’ you will then realize you are in hot pursuit of Him who touched you.
“But he went out and began to proclaim it freely and to spread the news around, to such an extent that Jesus could no longer publicly enter a city, but, stayed out in unpopulated areas; and they were coming to Him from everywhere.” Mark 1:45 NASB
In the KJV unpopulated areas says ‘lonely place.’ Jesus had just healed a leper, and the leper was going around telling everyone about his healing. In Luke 5:16, it talks about how Jesus would often slip away to the wilderness to pray. Once again, to the wilderness means ‘lonely place.’
When the devil cannot get you to be lost, he wants you to be religious because religion will turn other people away from God. 1 Corinthians 15 is a Scripture written by Paul to the church at Corinth. He gives us some great spiritual insight. He says in verse 46. However, the spiritual is not first, but the natural; then the spiritual. What does Paul mean here? What he is saying to you is that we can see God in the natural world. The Bible asks us how you can say that you love God, who you cannot see when you cannot love your brother who you can see? You see, the natural world gives us a vision of God, will show us, God. Before God does something new, He takes you to a lonely place. When God wants to do something to your life, He takes you to a lonely place. He will take you to a wilderness. You might not believe this, but if you are an outdoorsman, you will know that when an animal is about to give birth, it goes off by itself. Its instinct understands that when you are giving birth, you are in a vulnerable position. You are weak. Predators can smell the afterbirth. You are susceptible to being killed.
The Bible is eloquent. It is not only a beautiful piece of literature; it is God’s truth; it’s His basic instruction book for us. What you sometimes believe is God ignoring you, or what you believe is God being silent to you, is God sending you to a lonely place. New levels will bring new devils in your life. If you think you have problems when you make $40,000 a year, you’re going to have real problems when you make $400,000 a year.
I have a very successful acquaintance. He is worth tens of millions of dollars. He will tell you the IRS didn’t audit him and give him problems when he was only making $35,000 a year. Now he has to hire a tax attorney because even though he will win, the IRS just thought he would settle because he is so rich. When you were a single woman or a single man, you did not have the troubles that you have when you are married. When it was you and your wife, you did not have the troubles that children brought into the marriage. When it was just you, you didn’t have to worry about where you spent your money. When you get married and have children, you will need to make very conscious decisions about where you spend your money. New levels will bring new devils. You see, if the devil can’t get you to be lost, then he wants you to stay religious. The devil doesn’t mind if you are prospering or being successful when you are lost, that doesn’t bother him. But then you get saved, and he wants you to stay religious. All of a sudden, you say, I’m breaking away from religion, I’m going to seek all that God has for me. I’m going to be a Word person. I want to grow, and get everything God has for me, now you have suddenly become a threat for the devil. He will then focus more demonic activity on your life because new levels bring new devils.
You need to understand that just like an animal going off to be alone to give birth, God is doing something in your life. There are four phases in the miracle process. The first is intimacy. The second is the conception. The next is gestation, and the fourth is labor and travail. There are four stages to how God does a miracle in our life.
Embrace your lonely place, your miracle is coming friend.