from Jedran - Monday, September 20, 2004
accessed 3367 times
Disclaimer: This is a GN in a series. I don't have the rest of them and I seriously doubt you'd want to read the whole series, but I thought I'd post this as something new from "The Family International".
(Yes, they now have officially changed their name. "The Family" like the "Children of God" no longer exists).
Shooting Straight, Part 6
God's views on current issues and attitudes in the Family
By Maria FD/MM/FM 3505 8/04
Note: The "Challenging Thots" in this Letter address commitment and discipleship in general and aren't always related to the issue being discussed.
Inflexibility in communal living
Put a smile on your face….
Shepherding sex and relationships
Speak the truth
My promises are for you
Strive to believe
Judging people by their past
Inflexibility in Communal Living
1. One of our VSs wrote:
2. I have wondered about the inflexibility many have in the realm of our communal living. We have folks who aren't that good in the Home but who are fairly faithful witnessers. To a certain extent we can flow with that, and as a community we can fill in the lacks, similar to a mom who may be better at feeding the sheep than teaching her children. As long as the team is balanced, it seems it can work. But I'm concerned about those who sort of limit the Lord, in that they aren't so open to helping in areas that aren't "their forte." There are also those who have fairly substantial NWOs who don't seem to be so seriously working on them. Of course, there will always be those who are inspirational and those who are practical. We are supposed to balance each other's weaknesses. But some people don't seem to "get it" that they need to be working on changing and growing.
3. We have some who have, for instance, a real lack in the practical areas of life; they minimize the importance of cleanliness, tidiness, doing a thorough job on JJTs, and regularly feel that the only thing really important is getting out and witnessing. It seems that with all we've learned, it's high time we all recognize these weaknesses and imbalances.
4. Similarly, some folks, when struck by an emergency or quick, unpredictable schedule change, do horribly. Others who are pretty flexible and willing end up carrying the heftier load, unfairly. Whereas those who take change very poorly end up doing far less, because it's difficult for them to change or adapt without a lot of notice, and no one wants to deal with that.
God's mind on the matter:
5. (Jesus:) Inflexibility can be caused by a number of things. At times it's the result of a lack of willingness to grow or to be a help, stemming from selfishness. Other times an actual spiritual hindrance of stubbornness or pride can be the root of the problem. It's true that some personalities flow with change, new things, and new factors in the equation far more graciously and easily than other personalities, and I take that into account. But your personality traits that are less than revolutionary and don't fit in well with the discipleship lifestyle are not things I expect you to simply accept and live with--they're meant to be challenges that keep you desperate and overcoming!
6. Some traits will be with you till the day you die, and in some cases that's My will for you, to keep you humble and desperate with Me. But you should still be working to make progress. You should be growing; you should be maturing through the fight and the desperation and humility it brings. Otherwise, what happens is those little personality traits come between you and your unity with others, or they come between you and Me, or they come between you and your usefulness. They separate you from the truly important things in life.
7. Rather than simply accept that "that's the way I am," it's something that you should come to Me about. If you're finding it hard to flow with needs on the schedule because of sudden new factors, such as visitors, sickness, or whatever, then read up on yieldedness in the Word, and pray about why it's so difficult for you. Pin down the problem and then work on it! To have a winning team, each of you must be striving for the valuable qualities of flexibility and adaptability, along with humility and unselfishness. These four qualities are worth praying for, and exercising, and growing in, because they make it possible to truly live My Law of Love and get the job done well!
8. (Dad:) Some of you have gotten stuck in the "way it used to be," stuck in the past, stuck in the mud, and your wagon wheels aren't really moving anymore. It's one thing to have a good solid way of doing something that is working well and doesn't need to be changed, but it's another thing to be rigid. I never became rigid and so stuck in a rut that I couldn't change--the way we were doing things, the way I was doing things, even the way the Lord had originally showed us to do things.
9. Remember what I said? We've got to find out what God wants us to do today, how He wants us to do it today, and we can't go on yesterday's plans or ideas. It's not possible to stick to the old ways or old plans in an ever-changing and fluid progression of a movement such as ours.
10. The Lord loves change! He is a moving God! He's not stuck on how it was done yesterday. To Hell with how it used to be done if it's not what is needed today!
11. This goes for many of you who have a hard time flowing in the ever-changing environment of our Homes today. You might be very good at a particular ministry, and you want to just work in that ministry and don't want to have to be bothered with everything else. But you know, that's just not the way it works! The Lord allows, and yes, even engineers circumstances of change and need to keep you stretching, growing, sacrificing, changing, learning and reaching out. So if you're stuck in the mud or being inflexible about things, that's a problem! You're not benefiting from the Lord's movement that He's engineering to bring out the best in you, and the Home is suffering from your lack of willingness and sacrificial spirit.
12. You're in danger of becoming useless! Even the world knows this. In the technologically changing world around you, people have to change, adapt, and continue being retrained for new jobs and new ways of doing things; otherwise their jobs become obsolete and they become obsolete! Is that what you want? Do you want to become outdated and past use? Do you want to be stuck in the past? If not, you'd better keep changing, and really work on staying adaptable and moldable.
13. Part of human nature is that as you get older, you can naturally become less moldable, and if you don't watch out, you can get pretty set in your ways. It may be a bit harder for you FGAs to stay adaptable and open to change, but you've got to do it, and with the power of the keys and a healthy dose of the Lord's youthful, flowing, radical spirit, you can do it!
14. But I'm not going to direct this entire message only toward the FGAs, because some of you SGAs have become old bottles! You aren't willing to change, you aren't revoluting, things have got to be "just the way you want it" or you get unhappy, bent out of shape, or don't fill the need as well as you should.
15. All of you need to realize that change is part of life for the Lord. Change is part of the fundamental element of this Revolution. We're always changing, always moving, always revoluting, and if you can't change with us, you're going to get left behind.
16. Some have wondered if it's necessary to be flexible or if it's possible to just remain in your area of expertise. For example, if you're a good outreacher and witness, can't you just give your best in that area and sort of neglect the other areas of life? Or perhaps you think those other areas don't quite matter as much, and even if you're not real good at filling in, you can sort of get by? Well, the answer to that is no. You, as a Family member, have to be willing to grow and change and make progress in every area of your life. Some of you have serious weaknesses, and maybe they don't affect your witness-–which you consider your main ministry or focus--but if they're hindering your life as a disciple, if they're hindering your communal living, if they're making it hard on others, you need to work on them!
17. Your life for the Lord is multi-faceted. No one is expecting you to be an expert in every area, but you can certainly be willing in every area, and give it your best when the Lord calls on you to fill a need.
18. If you can't adapt and be flexible, you're going to find yourself without a solid team to work with, because it's very hard to unite with and work with people who can only do such-and-such. Flexibility on the part of each and every member is essential to creating well-balanced, winning teams. You have to be able to adapt, to flow with the needs of the day‚ and to focus on what the Lord brings into your court today.
19. Maybe you're good at one thing and that's where you can really shine, but that doesn't mean that's the only thing you should do, or that you can't help out elsewhere when there's a need. It's very important to remain open and willing. Becoming rigid and stuck in your ways can spell the end of your usefulness to the Lord.
20. Imagine a lump of clay. If it only could be molded into one shape, how useful would it be? If it refused to hold the shape of a cup when it was fashioned into one, what would the potter do? He couldn't use it. If it insisted on staying one way, then pretty soon he would have to throw that lump of clay away and get a new, moldable, and easily fashioned lump of clay.
21. I know you don't want to see life pass you by. I know you want to stay useful to your Home and to the Lord and the Family. But if you don't fight against this area of becoming rigid and stuck in your ways, you're going to end up being very limited in your usefulness, and eventually you might find yourself out of a job.
22. It's a sure sign of growing old and old–bottlish in spirit when things have to be a certain way to make you happy, when you have to do a certain thing, when you won't change. When you stop changing‚ you're through! When you stop being moldable and flexible, then you're finished, because you'll break, you'll crack up; you won't be able to take the changes and new moves of the Spirit that God's got in store for you, for your Home, for the Family. He is a moving God! Remember that!
23. Did you think your life was going to remain the same forever? God is not that way. He is always changing things and moving forward, and you'd do well to remember that without changes, they fear not God. Change is an essential part of Family life; it's an essential part of the disciple's life. It's the way it's destined to be, and it's not about to stop now. So if you've gotten a bit rigid or stuck in your ways, or you can't help out when you're asked to do something on the spur of the moment, or you're not willing and seeking to change and improve your weak areas and grow in your abilities in order to best meet the needs around you, then you need to check your heart and see where your revolutionary spirit has gone. A revolutionary loves change! They embrace it, they flow with it, and they look forward to it.
24. Don't let the creeping paralysis of old age--or old-bottlism--get ahold of your habits. Don't let old age in spirit make you rigid. Stay young and alive by changing, by not getting stuck in your ways, by being flexible. Even if your body isn't flexible anymore, your spirit can still be, and that determines your age. The oldest of people can be the youngest in spirit if they'll let the Lord keep them flexible. And some of you youngest of people can be the oldest in spirit if you don't!
25. So the moral of the story is: Remain flexible, changeable, and revolutionary if you want to go on with the Lord and maintain your usefulness to Him and to the world. There's so much still to come! You really don't want to get stuck in a rut now!
26. (Mama:) Flexibility, adaptability, and willingness to change are essential qualities for disciples! Pray for them, hone them, and take every opportunity to exercise those muscles in the spirit! Inflexibility and lack of willingness to change will destroy your usefulness!
27. The keys of change can not only help you to change, but they can help you desire change and see the good in it‚ and take it like the revolutionary you are!
* "Old Bottles," ML #242:1-17, 25-37, DB 5
* "New Bottles," ML #251:24–26, 28, DB 5
* "What Does It Mean to Be Truly Revolutionary," Maria #44‚ pages 324-325, DB 3
* "Thanksgiving Prayer for Changes," ML #2943:1-7, DB 12
* "Let Jesus Bear the Weight‚" ML #2987:165-174, Lifelines 22
* "Prophecies on Yieldedness," ML #3044:44–56, Lifelines 23
* "You Can Make It, Part 1," ML #3277:47-60, GN 880
* "You Can Make It, Part 2," ML #3292:8-17, GN 891
* "Changing Deeply Ingrained Habits and Mindsets," ML #3324:4-24, 31-64, 74-77, GN 929
* FJWL 2: #5, 115, 135
* "Change," #1, 3, 10-11, 14, 20‚ 33, 39, 43‚ 44, 60, 67, 69, 72, MOP 1
* "Adaptability," Word Topics
* "Changes: How to Take Them," Word Topics
28. (Jesus:) To all My modern-day Moseses, I am giving the call to leave your personal Egypt behind. This is the Egypt of your wrong attitudes, your old ways of looking at things, your old ways of doing things. Do like Moses did and forsake Egypt, looking beyond this world to Me, and receive the great recompense of reward.
Put a Smile on Your Face….
29. (Mama:) Some Family members don't like to smile or show much emotion of the Lord's Spirit-–happiness, affection, enthusiasm, praise, etc. Smiling is humbling and sweet, whereas maintaining a reserved, unemotional look is more "sophisticated," or basically just more worldly. Some of the pictures that people send in to the MO site are just deadpan, or trying to look "tough" or "cool" or reserved. It sort of relates to how some people won't raise their hands in praise, or speak in tongues, or enter in to singing or dancing or whatever is going on. Some men also tend to do this in their manner of affection--they won't put their arm around the girl. It's a macho attitude, where the girl has to do all the holding on to them. It's so proud. Those various manifestations aren't directly related, but it all stems from the same attitude--pride.
30. (Jesus:) Are you letting My free Spirit move in you? Or are you too bottled up with pride to allow My Spirit to show through? You might say, "Yes, I'm free in the spirit, I let the Lord move. I don't bottle Him up," and you might be thinking about some of the bigger things. But what about the little things--the little expressions of love, happiness, joy, or freedom?
31. Do you raise your hands to praise Me? Can you join in the singing and speaking in tongues or praising Me? Can you hug others and show affection without restraint? Can you praise and love Me out loud? These are things that indicate whether you're free in the spirit or whether you're bottling it up. These things show how much of a hold pride has over your reactions. Even simple things like smiling in photos and showing My loving, happy Spirit as opposed to a cold, hard, deadpan face are demonstrations of your spiritual health.
32. I'm not suggesting you become man-pleasers, thinking only about looking and appearing "free" in public to suit others or your shepherds. I'm talking about attacking the pride that you may have in your life, and letting more of My humble, loving, free Spirit move in you and dictate your actions. It's not that the public things matter more than the attitudes of the heart, but in most cases, your public demonstrations of what you do or don't are a good indication of how much pride is in your heart and whether your attitudes are good or bad. If you're not doing the humble thing in public, chances are you're not making the right decisions in private either.
33. You don't have to have a big smile in every photo or be speaking in tongues all day, every day, but you should make sure that you are exercising those muscles of humility and love and letting My Spirit come through. If you have Me in your heart you should seek to show it on your face. And if you're not, then you're yielding to your pride.
34. Looking cool is just a pride trip that prevents Me from coming through. It's an ungodly System attitude to be so "cool" that you put out the fires of My Spirit. It's not right to be so laid back and "chilled out" that you can't show My love and warmth to one another in the form of loving affection or words and looks of kindness. Those things define a Family member. Those things are unique to those that have real love in their hearts. Don't you want to be one of them?
35. Don't let your uniqueness, your fire, your spirit, the things that make you what you are, get squelched by the System's idea of what cool or sexy or "in" is. Don't put yourself in their mold and box, trying to look and act like a hip, laid-back Systemite rather than a wild, free, and sexy child of David and Bride of Christ. If you want to be a Systemite, go be one, but if you want to be a Family member and if you profess to be a Family member, embrace the things that make you such, and then look and act like it too! Do the little wild and crazy things that you are free to do in this Family.
36. Put a smile on your face because you're thinking about Me. Give love to others because My love bubbling in your heart constrains you to do so. Be affectionate, be passionate, be demonstrative, be praiseful, be all those things! Don't be bound, cold, restrained, dead‚ and worldly. Embrace the fire--don't squelch it with your icicles of supposed cool.
37. (Mama:) Don't let your pride or the System's ideas of what is or isn't sophisticated or macho or "cool" dictate your actions! Let the Lord's loving, humble, gentle, giving, caring, passionate Spirit flow through you! Enjoy life and love! Don't be a stranger to the love and warmth and heat and freedom that we're so blessed to have!
38. My Spirit is passionate, alive, vibrant, warm, moving and thrilling! Call on the keys of revolution and full possession, and My Spirit will become more a part of every aspect of your life and change it for the better!
* "Be So Happy," ML #159, DB 5
* "Let Jesus Shine," Maria #57, DB 3
* "Show'm Jesus," ML #2074, DB 3
* "The Need for More Affection in Our Homes," ML #2857:1-14, 48-50, Lifelines 21
* "A New Day of Love‚" ML #3011:2-17, Lifelines 22
* "Man Looketh on the Outward Appearance," ML #3124:76–85, Lifelines 24
* "Loving Kindness," ML #3237:1-35, GN 840
* "More on the Keys, Part 3," ML #3354:84-103, GN 947
* "Smile," MOP 2
* "Countenance," Word Topics
39. (Jesus:) The less like the world you are‚ the more attractive you will be in spirit to those of the world you are trying to reach. My true sheep do not want to be reminded of the hell they're trying to escape. They want to see something different, something spiritual, something real, something from the fifth dimension. But they'll never see those things in you if you are contaminated by worldly attitudes and practices, looking so much like everything they're trying to get away from.
Shepherding Sex and Relationships
40. (Mama:) Very few of you adults, parents, shepherds, or experienced SGAs have the faith, conviction, and sacrificial love necessary to help shepherd others in the area of sex and relationships. It's a sticky topic to get involved in, there are always many different factors and complexities, but the fact of the matter is that it's an area that's really a blessing for people to have outside help and counsel and perspective on. The alternative is to let people learn from their own mistakes--which, while it is a last resort and sometimes what the Lord might know is necessary in a particular situation, it can be really painful and cause a lot of disruption or difficulty until the person gets the point! It's really sad that so many of you who are capable and could be a blessing to others by offering counsel or prayer or support aren't willing to get involved--in a loving, wise, prayerful way, of course.
41. One of the COs wrote:
It seems that the young people have been quite active in their sex lives and experimenting, but sadly lacking in their understanding and knowledge of the Word and Charter to provide the guidelines and boundaries to even fulfill the Law of Love. I feel this is just as much the parents and adults' fault for not properly shepherding, communicating and helping the young people. Many of them have been there before and have wisdom to pass on from their own experiences that could be helping to prevent the young people from making the same mistakes. It needs to be a two-way street of communication and openness. It's an area that needs a lot of help.
42. (Mama:) And I'll add to that, that it's not only young people who need help. No matter how old or experienced you are‚ sometimes you just can't see clearly when you're personally involved in a situation, and you can really benefit from outside counsel and help and shepherding, and even just prayer. You can think you're seeing things clearly, but emotions are powerful things and can drastically change your perspective, and having someone be honest with you and help you see the other side can be a tremendous help. So having more honest communication on this topic, and shepherds being more aware and trained and willing to offer shepherding and prayer, would help everyone, not just our young people.
God's mind on the matter:
43. (Dad:) Shepherds have shied away from shepherding people's sexual and emotional activities because they don't want to be seen as intrusive or invasive. They want to let people be free to experiment and try new things and go according to their own faith. Plus it's a touchy area that people are generally pretty private about and don't really welcome a lot of outside "advice" in most cases. But there is a balance. A false balance is an abomination to the Lord, and that's what we have a little of here.
44. To properly shepherd someone's sexual activity and relationships takes prayerfulness and being in tune with the Lord. You can't rush in with your own ideas about how things should or shouldn't be done. You've got to research the Word, be sure you're in line with the Word, and really seek the Lord with an open and humble heart to know how to apply what the Word says on it, before you go counseling someone. Even then, after you hear their perspective you have to be willing to keep going back to the Lord, and it's usually finding a balance between what the goal is and where the person's faith lies, and how the Lord is leading them to reach that goal. Of course‚ there are some clear-cut issues of obedience or disobedience when it comes to boundaries the Lord has clearly laid out. But more often than not, it's not quite so clear-cut, and the Lord works with people and leads them along slowly, and every situation is different, everyone's faith is a little different, etc. So you have to have patience, you have to have faith, and you have to keep getting the Lord's perspective. It's a lot of hard work!
45. You also might be a little gun-shy because maybe you tried to help in a situation before, and the situation was complicated beyond belief and you finally gave up. Or maybe you really worked hard to try to help someone, and they didn't accept the help and the situation didn't turn out well. Or maybe someone got mad at you for trying to help. Or maybe you didn't handle it right and it hurt someone. Getting involved in this personal area of someone's life is touchy, it's not easy.
46. One reason you may have had something blow up in your face in this respect before could be because you didn't take the time to prayerfully research and desperately seek the Lord about how to approach it. Of course, the person you're talking to needs to be open too, but for your part as the shepherd, the elder, or the parent, you need to be very prayerful and really take things to the Lord and get His mind on the subject so that you don't come across as too overbearing and invasive, but also so that you don't shy away from shepherding people's sexual activities and personal relationships when there's a need.
47. Shepherding the area of sex and relationships is something that has to be done; you have to look at it like another area of life where people need help and guidance. Young people who are coming of age and just entering that realm of life need a lot of help and guidance if you want them to get off on the right foot and build good habits, and it really helps if their parents or shepherds or mentors can be involved in some way. Older young people--YAs and SGAs--often need help too, because the problems they face are more complex or serious or involved. And even FGAs who have been "around the block" need an outside perspective at times, or at least additional prayer.
48. Most young people are going to be very resistant to shepherding in this area, and are probably not going to take it real well at first, but that shouldn't stop you. You have to keep working on it, keep praying for them, and keep helping them to be open. They don't need to tell you everything they do‚ but it would be good to know that generally you've helped them be knowledgeable about what the Word and the Charter say about their sexual interactions, and make sure they're not going into it half-cocked and with skewed ideas of what the Word says on it.
49. You don't need to be invasive and annoying, but you can share your experiences, you can pray with them, and you can counsel with them about sexual activities. If you have an open, honest, humble line of communication, some will even come to you when they have questions‚ and you can give them godly counsel and guidance. Or you can check in with them from time to time and have honest communication about how things are going. You don't necessarily have to get involved in everything they do, but you shouldn't take a hands-off approach to the situation.
50. It's going to be something that's not a "fun" area in which you exercise your job as a shepherd. It's not going to be easy, but it's something the Lord expects of you as a shepherd. You need to get involved and you need to take care of situations, especially when they're raising problems or questions in the Home.
51. If everything is running smoothly, then there isn't a need to try to change things or get real involved, but you're not going to know that it's running smoothly unless you have good open lines of communication, and you're able to really be praying for those involved. You can't assume that things are running smoothly just because you're not having an obvious crisis on your hands. And when problems or situations arise that need shepherding or clarification, you can't be hesitant or reluctant to get involved. You're going to have to look past any resentment the young people might have to your involvement. You're going to even have to sit them down and have a good heart-to-heart talk about it, even if you're the only one doing the talking at first. You have to be willing to face a bit of resistance at first, but if you do it right, if you seek the Lord and are prayerful, He will give you the anointing and He will help you learn how to shepherd in this area as well.
52. It is in no way a hands-off area. Everyone needs direction and guidance, and the area of sexual activity and relationships is no different than another area of a person's life, other than it requiring a lot of prayerful counsel with the Lord about it to make sure you're getting it right and that you're not pushing your ideas or values on others. You have to go by the Word and be open to how the Lord will lead in each situation.
53. An outside voice really does help to bring a balanced view to the situation‚ and can help to solve a lot of difficulties young couples may run into in their relationships, and singles too. In the end, like many other areas of shepherding, they will be thankful for your help if it's done right and prayerfully. You can help them succeed; your loving shepherding and even intervention in some cases can help them not get hurt as often. You can help to build a foundation for marriages and friendships that will last as you help them build it on the Word, on godly values, on the things that really matter.
54. You've just got to do it! It's not a pleasant job, it's not an easy job, but as shepherds you're responsible to care for your flocks, and the area of sexuality and relationships is no different from any other area; it needs shepherding to make sure things are kept in line with the Word and the Charter and to help people in their relationships as well.
55. You may not like doing it, but you can be the Lord's instrument to save people a lot of hurt or difficulties by being there to lend a listening ear and pray, by getting involved when necessary, and by braving the resentment or resistance they may feel toward you at first. It's the godly thing to do, it's the right thing to do, and even if it may be hard to do, it needs to be done.
56. (Mama:) People need shepherding, counsel, and prayer regarding sexual activities and relationships. Our young people who are just entering that phase of life really would benefit from having that input and shepherding. But even those who are more experienced could use at least the open line of communication and the extra prayer for that area of their lives.
57. We're blessed to live the Law of Love, and so we have a very special avenue to exercise unselfishness and giving and receive the blessings of love and unity and obedience in return. But it also adds a new dimension to our lives-–one which we'll probably always be learning about and progressing in.
58. So don't be ashamed to ask for help or counsel or prayer. Those "personal" issues are often exactly what the Lord chooses to use to work in your life, and He expects you to go for prayer, to get counsel‚ to research His Word, to take advantage of those opportunities to grow and progress. So don't feel that you're unusual or really out of it if your love life and sex life involves lessons and you need shepherding!
59. Some people don't like it when their mate or the one they're involved with goes to their shepherds for counsel or to get prayer concerning personal problems and problems in their relationship. They feel it reflects badly on them personally, and they don't like that. They're more concerned about their image than they are about getting the help they need. They don't want anyone getting the impression that they're lacking in some way as a mate or partner, or that they're not able to make their relationship work on their own without any outside help. That's pride, and it's unrealistic. No one is self-sufficient. Everyone and every relationship can benefit greatly from the prayers of others.
60. It's a difficult topic to get involved in as a shepherd and requires real desperation and humility and wisdom on your part, but it's part of your responsibility and you can't shirk it. The Lord will help you and give you the anointing as you seek Him.
61. Claim the keys of humility and insight when you need to share counsel with someone and the message will be clearer, your communication will be sweeter, and the input you give will be easier for the person to receive.
* "Communication in Marriage and Other Relationships," ML #3196:89-132, 148-168, GN 800
* "Living the Lord's Law of Love, Part 4," ML #3204:11-20, GN 807
* "Living the Lord's Law of Love, Part 10," ML #3210:4-38, GN 813
* "Issues, Part 4," ML #3306:38-55, GN 909
* "Are You a Disciple?" ML #3365:183-239‚ GN 963
* "Choices and Consequences, Part 2," ML #3485:132-167, GN 1070
62. (Jesus:) When you come to stand before Me, you'll want to know that you've done your best, given your best, and supported your mates in battle as much as you could. You won't want to have to say that a little pride or lack of love or laziness or fear of complications held you back from being what I asked you to be for your loved ones. So don't let anything stop you from obeying Me. Give all, knowing that what's waiting for you will go so far beyond mere compensation that you'll be ashamed of anything you let stop you or hinder you. It will seem so puny in comparison. Give your best!
Speak the Truth
63. (Mama:) A lot of our people take the "deceivers yet true" concept and use it as an excuse to be pretty dishonest or shady in some of their dealings with others or ways they conduct business. Just because we at times need to withhold part of the truth for an exceptional situation where the security and work is on the line, and it falls into the realm of "we have to obey God rather than man," does not give any excuse or justification for dishonesty in our everyday lives, business dealings, and certainly not with our brothers and sisters and mates and co-workers. Being completely honest often requires more sacrifice, more explanation, more humility, or you have to be willing to take a little personal loss, and it's in those times that some people so easily cop out and become dishonest, because they don't want to make the sacrifices. The Lord is very displeased when people take the principle of "deceivers yet true" and apply it with selfish motives--they're just covering for their pride or selfishness or greed or whatever. It's really wrong.
God's mind on the matter:
64. (Jesus:) Just because there have been times in the Word, and even in your present-day experience, that you have had to conceal truth in order to further the spread of My Word, you in the Family are not exempt from all the other cautions and warnings that I have given about how I am displeased with liars and those who purposely and needlessly spread untruth. I have said that "I hate lying lips," and none of you in the Family are any exception to this.
65. I need to make the standard clear to you so that there is no doubt about My stance and how I feel. I don't want My children to be known as deceivers and liars. It's an extremely poor representation to the world, as you are My face. It is a sin for which I must punish. I don't want any of you to be hiding behind the permission that you are given in the Word to conceal things if it will preserve My message and My work, and use that in disobedience to lie, to cover up, to steal, to trick, or to do anything underhanded or crafty.
66. The standard is to tell the truth at all times. The standard is to be honest and to not bring reproach on My cause by engaging in lying and trickery. The standard is to be as I was and to speak the truth in love. Truth should be your default, your ever-ready answer. You should always tell the truth unless specifically shown otherwise by Me. If the world prevents you from spreading My messages or endangers your lives for My sake, and to be dishonest to the world will be to be honest to God, then you do not owe them the truth. Yet until that time, there is no excuse for dishonesty.
67. Sin is still sin in My eyes, as you have all been learning. Sins committed by the children of David are not winked at because of the other freedoms you are given in spirit. Lying is a sin like any other, and it is something that I have said that I hate and that you should not do. Therefore, to be obedient children, to be disciples, and to please Me, please tell the truth. It's like David said about going fast versus going slow. He said that for the few verses that tell you to speed up and use haste, there must be a hundred more that advise going slowly and prayerfully.
68. By the same measure‚ for every example in the Word that shows where it was prudent for My children to conceal certain things, there are many more scriptures and examples that advocate truth and being honest and a good testimony. That should show you that the times I would give you permission to conceal the truth are relatively few compared to the times I expect you to be fully honest, and those exceptions come with very specific circumstances. Please don't wrest My scriptures to your own advantage. Your testimony is to be a Family of truth-speakers that have integrity and that others can trust to deliver My Words honestly, and can back up those words by honesty in their day-to-day interactions as well. If you compromise in this area, you are destroying your testimony.
69. Integrity and honesty are traits respected the world over, just as deceitfulness and lying are universally condemned. Think about how you're living. Is your aim to be as honest as you possibly can and tell as much truth as you possibly can, or do you try to see how little truth you can get by with and how much you can possibly conceal? Are you upfront in your business dealings? Are you above reproach in the way you live and the impression you have given to your contacts? Are you seeking Me about how to deliver the meat of the Word in your testimony, and how to prepare your sheep and friends and those who help you, for persecution?
70. Of course, there is a time and a place for everything, and you must temper your truth-speaking with wisdom and counsel. But as I said, the aim should be to be as honest as you can possibly be in as many areas as you can possibly be, not the other way around. Even if some answers are difficult, or some truths are hard and embarrassing to express, in the end, the truth is what will set you free--especially if it's the good truth of My Word and doctrine that you are spreading. And even if you find that some people cannot handle the full truth, at least you've delivered your souls, and if nothing else, you'll find that even people who cannot agree with you can still respect you for your honesty.
71. And of equally great importance, yet a rule that has even fewer valid exceptions, is the need to be honest about things that are not a matter of security or impression, but are just your regular dealings with your brothers and sisters and outsiders that you come into contact with. There is no excuse for lying, stealing, tricking, covering up, telling half-truths, and just generally being a sneaky kind of person. Sad to say, some of you are like this and you feel that you are somehow outside the laws both of earth and of the spirit, and that it'll be okay if you say this or that to these people, or take advantage of this or that.
72. Those things are never okay, and even if you don't pay for it through physical consequences, I will have to judge you for it. Being a Family member doesn't shield you from My punishments and doesn't give you an excuse. If anything, it makes you more accountable. Lying is wrong, it's a sin, and I'm against it. It says very clearly in the Bible that "he that covereth his sins shall not prosper" (Pro.28:13), and that is just as true today.
73. Some of you border on lying and deceiving in your business dealings, where you're always trying to get the most out of the situation, often at the expense of the other person or the company. Some of you excuse it by saying, "They're a big company, they can afford it. I'm a poor missionary and this is the Lord's money.…" and on and on. But that doesn't give you license, nor do I approve, of dishonesty or underhanded deceptive dealings even in those situations. It's part of your testimony to be honest. Even the world expects a "Christian sample" from Christians. Even if no one else ever finds out these things, I know, and I don't approve. I don't agree, and it's not right.
74. This subject hasn't been touched on a lot lately, so consider this a warning. You all know better anyway, but for those of you who haven't had this in mind much lately, get it in your mind now, and keep it in mind. I'm not going to wink at your little untruths and deceptions, and you're going to have to pay for them.
75. The truth can be painful sometimes --painful to your pride, to your reputation, to your pocketbook, painful in a lot of ways--but it's never as bad as telling lies or somehow trying to sneak out from under whatever situation you've fallen into. When you tell the truth‚ I bless you, and I will help you to deal with whatever the situation is. Telling lies may get you out of it for the time being, but it will catch up to you in the end. And on top of that, you have to deal with the guilt and the remorse of disobeying My laws and forfeiting My blessings. That's never a good feeling. So make honesty your policy and stop your bad habits of lying or deceiving if you have developed them.
76. Practice being truth-speakers, people of integrity, people who can be counted on to deal with each other and those of the world honestly, squarely, fairly, and with the complete truth as often as you can. That's a good sample of Me, a good reflection of Me, and you will reap personal blessings for being upfront and honest. Always shoot for the full truth, and let Me be the One to tell you when it's time to do otherwise for My sake‚ rather than taking it upon yourself to live an underhanded lifestyle. You worry about telling the truth and let Me worry about the consequences. I want you to be truthful as much as you can, therefore I will protect and help you to deal with the results of that truth.
77. Put on your magic green shirts and see the changes that can happen and the good effect it will have on others when you deal with them fair and square. You'll not only see a change in your interaction and witness to others, but you'll see more blessings from Heaven too. It's a good deal all the way around. So speak the truth!
78. (Mama:) Being honest and straightforward is the way to go! The Lord does not approve of our being deceptive or untruthful in our interactions and dealings with others, whether in the world or the Family, unless it's for an extremely serious situation that could harm the work and there's no way around it.
79. Being personally uncomfortable about something or lazy or wanting the advantage that withholding the truth might afford you is not reason enough to be dishonest. The Lord will bless your honesty‚ and the sacrifices it sometimes entails to be honest, and His blessings will more than make up for any sacrifice or difficulty.
80. It's easy to compromise, to see the short-term advantages or ways you think things could work out better if you just didn't give the whole truth, but unless the Lord specifically directs you to withhold part of the truth, it's your duty as a Christian and a child of David to speak the truth, be forthright and thus above reproach in your dealings‚ interactions, explanations, and approach to things. Speak the truth!
81. To help you follow through on this, please pray about it personally, and discuss as a Home whether there are ways you need to improve in this area to be a stronger work and better testimony.
82. The keys of honesty and conviction will empower you to make the right choices, to speak the truth in love, to stand firm in godly principles with wisdom and grace. Through this testimony many will be drawn to Me.
* "Personal Visits, Part I," ML #143:35-41‚ Vol.1
* "Personal Visits, Parts II and III‚" ML #143A:126-140, Vol.1
* "Conviction and Honesty," Maria #51, DB 3
* "Emergency Notice: Owe No Man, Part 2," ML #866, DB 7
* "The Hotel Marshal Dream," ML #1045:1-9‚ 24-37, 49-53, 137-139, Vol.9
* "Spokes of Light," ML #1399:8-9, 27, 32, 34, DB 7
* "To Lie--Or Not to Lie?" ML #1400‚ DB 1
* "Issues, Part 8‚" ML #3356:48-58, GN 951
* "Charter Responsibilities," ML #3197:127-129, 132, 135-136, GN 803
* "Honesty/Dishonesty," MOP 1
* "The Christian's Relationship to Worldly Society," 6A-D, Word Basics
83. (Jesus:) You are a Family member. You are My disciple. You are the best of the best. You are ordained to be one of the very special few who will do great things for Me in the Last Days. To do any less, to hide your light under a bushel or to let it get snuffed out by the cares and sins of this world will be destroying who you really are. You'll never be truly happy as anything but what you were born to be.
My Promises Are for You
84. (Mama:) Some of you lack faith in the Lord's promises when it comes to appropriating them for yourself. It's all good and well when you read them, and you think they're nice and they're beautiful. But when it comes time to put them to the test, to really believe that the Lord can do that for you, you sort of wimp out or feel that because of your natural capabilities--or the lack of them--your age, your weakness, your situation, they don't really apply to you. The Lord told someone recently, "You feel that My promises are good for others but not good for you."
God's mind on the matter:
85. (Jesus:) Let Me ask you something. Do you believe that I love you? Do you believe I died for you? Do you believe that you are My child, one I know personally and care about? I have spoken many words to try to convey My love to you, and done many things in your life to manifest Myself, My love, and My power to you in a personal, tangible way.
86. Now I want you to think about this carefully. If you can believe that I love you, that I care about you, and that I am God, and thus am all-powerful, all of which are part of your foundation of faith--shouldn't it stand to reason that My promises are for you personally as well? If you are My child, why would I not include you in My promises? If you really think about it, you'll see there's actually no logical reason to think they wouldn't be for you.
87. I am not a man that I should lie. I am true to My Word and true to My promises. What I have promised, I am able to perform. Do you believe that? Do you believe that I am capable of anything?
88. My power is so great, I am capable of working through you, and I mean you personally. It doesn't matter how you feel about yourself, your abilities, your talents, your spirituality, or whatever it is that you think makes you unworthy or incapable of being used by Me. I am greater than all that.
89. If you're focused on yourself, of course you're not going to be able to believe you can make it and do all the things I'm asking of you. But if you can get your eyes on Me and really grasp the concept that it's all Me and My power‚ you'll start to see things closer to the way they really are.
90. If you're obeying, and doing the things I've asked of you personally‚ then you can ask Me for a boost of faith to appropriate My promises. Then put Me to the test, and stand back and enjoy, because I will come through for you in ways you never thought possible!
91. (Jesus to the FGAs:) Deep inside you think it's impossible, that things can't change that much, you're too set in your ways, and somehow My promises are good for others, but they aren't really meant for someone like you. Many of you, My FGA brides, feel this way; you're not alone in this attitude. But the reality of the situation is the opposite; in fact, your generation can really prove the miraculous power of change through the power of the keys. Everyone can change if they reach out to Me and appropriate the power of the keys of change, but in your case, since you have often sought change far longer, it's a more obvious testimony to My power when I change you. I have all My brides in mind when I make wonderful, awesome, life-changing promises, and that includes you personally. I know how much you need Me and that you can't do it in your own strength, and I have taken those factors into consideration when I made My promises to you--they include your physical weakness, your long-term habits, your lack of energy, or whatever "excuses" the Enemy might try to bring up to prove you can't do it. I've already factored it all in, and My promises are for you.
92. When you, My FGA brides, were younger, you could do so much in your own strength, and as you well know, many of you did just that. You left Me out of the equation too many times and just did it yourselves. The wonderful thing about growing older is that now you can't do that anymore; you can't do it yourself because you don't have the strength or even sometimes the know-how. Everything is different. You have already made a lot of changes in your life by simply growing older. So now all you have to do is apply My promises and spiritual laws to the natural physical changes you're seeing already, and you will see great results.
93. You're at a turning point where it's now possible for you to change even more quickly because you have to depend on the keys even more desperately. You naturally call out for the help from above that you need before you do anything else, and I answer and send you the help you need. You automatically depend on Me more because you can't do it in your own flesh.
94. Isn't it wonderful to realize how I've orchestrated your life to make it as easy as possible for you to flow with the moves of My Spirit? You should be encouraged with the progress you've already made, because I am. I'm proud of you--not only for all that you have already given to Me and the Family through years and years of service, but I'm proud that you're still serving Me today. You're still giving Me all you can today. You're still fighting to move forward and stay in step with Me even though the things I ask of you mean more sacrifices and more giving. Still you say yes and move forward.
95. How can I help but love you even more and want to do all I can to make it easy for you? And I will, My loves. I will not give you more than you can bear, but I will make the way ahead possible and doable and I will give you the anointing you need for each challenge.
96. (Mama:) The Lord's promises are for you. Peter was talking to someone recently who was going through a difficult heartbreak, and the Lord gave him the verse for them, "He healeth the broken in heart, and bindeth up their wounds" (Psa.147:3). The person was still a bit skeptical--we've all been in that state before where you just don't see how the sun can shine tomorrow or how you'll ever feel normal or happy again, and it's natural to feel like, "Yes, I'm sure that's good for others, but it won't work for me." But Peter told them, "You know, that promise is just as definite and as sure as the promises we base our salvation on--John 3:16, or 'he that believes on the Son has everlasting life.' There's no difference! When the Lord makes you a promise‚ you can base your life on it."
97. Think about the promises of Heaven, the promises of our salvation, the promises of the Lord's return. We believe those, and we live by them. So you should look at the other promises the Lord gives--the ones He gives you in prophecy, or shows you to apply from His written word--in the same way, and have enough faith to act on them, to live like you believe them, to obey and fulfill your part of the bargain so that the Lord can fulfill His!
98. As you read My Words, call on the keys to activate the gift of faith I've placed within you, and My Word will come alive like never before.
* "I Love You-–Just You," ML #2985, DB 12
* "My Heart Belongs to You," ML #3080, Lifelines 23
* "Believing Prophecy," ML #3130:83-87, Lifelines 24
* "Nothing Is Impossible‚" ML #3316:3-51, GN 920
* "Rising Above," ML #3379:92-93, 108–115, Post-it GN #2
* FJWL 2: #491
99. (Dad:) Don't let the Enemy keep you from partaking of the miracles, rewards, fulfillment, happiness and blessings that the Lord wants to give you by convincing you that they're not for you, not yours to apply, or that you're not worthy. Hold tight to His promises and don't let go! Say with Jacob, "I will not let Thee go except Thou bless me!" That's the kind of faith that gets results!
Strive to Believe
100. (Mama:) Some people still roll their eyes or dismiss the reality of the spiritual forces fighting us and the helpers we can call on for help. They sort of chalk up the descriptions of the demons and spirit helpers to hype or someone's imagination. To them it's all a little too surreal and they look at those who do believe it like, "Well, if that does it for them, then that's fine."
God's mind on the matter:
101. (Jesus:) Let's put aside for a moment the whole aspect of choosing to believe or reject what I've revealed to you about the spiritual forces fighting for you and against you. Let's pass over the whole concept of a soldier fighting in a war and choosing to ignore who his comrades are and who his enemies are--he thinks he can win the war by himself. Seems a little dumb, but we won't talk about that part. I'm not going to get into that issue‚ because I want to talk to you about something much more serious: your faith in My Words. If you think you can choose which of My Words to believe and which you'll just ignore, then you're in danger.
102. It's dangerous to start choosing which of My Words you will believe and which you will not. I have no ulterior motives for the things that I tell you. I only tell you what you need to know because I love you, and I want you to survive and thrive in the days ahead, as well as to be happy, useful, and successful in the here and now. To dismiss some of what I tell you, even if it's only what you consider to be the more "far-out" parts, is to call into question everything that I speak to you about, because why should I tell you some things that are true and some things that aren't? It's either all true or it all isn't.
103. To any of you who are choosing to believe the more fundamental truths that you base your life on--salvation by grace, Heaven and the afterlife, even the Endtime--yet are dismissing the radical truths I have given you, especially those that concern the spiritual forces that affect your life, you are in danger of forsaking something much more precious to you than you know. You're in danger of losing your faith in My Word, which is one of the saddest things of all to lose. Because if you get to the point where you no longer trust My Word, what do you have left?
104. You might say that you believe My Words but that it is My channels you question, and you wonder if some of the more "strange truths" truly are from Me. Well‚ I'm not here to convince you of that; I'll let My Word do the talking with signs following; I'm only here to tell you what will happen when you begin to reject aspects of My revealed Word. Doubting My channels will cause you to question My voice in prophecy, which will cause you to question whether anyone can truly be trusted to hear My voice clearly, which then leads to questions about all the Word I have given to the Family. But will the Enemy stop at that? No. If you can't trust My Words for today, what made My Words of yesterday through Dad, or even through My prophets of old in the past, any good?
105. If you decide to follow this line of thinking, the Enemy will eventually have you call into question everything, even whether the Bible is the inspired Word of God or whether it is just ancient moral teachings to be taken or left at your pleasure. Eventually your faith in God will be shaken and you will wonder whether there really is right and wrong and whether there is anyone who cares at all what you do and how you live, and whether all religion is a sham and a hoax created to cudgel you into adopting someone else's moral code.
106. That is the sad end result of beginning to reject and close your mind to My revealed truth. I know that all the specifics about your spirit helpers are hard for some of you, and you wonder whether it's all true or not. It sounds strange and heavenly, yet also too strangely familiar at times to worldly terms and names and powers, and you wonder if it's been gotten right. The answer is to believe what I say in full, yet retain the knowledge that at present you are only seeing a fraction of the whole picture, and that although not every question will be answered to your satisfaction on this earth, and not everything will make perfect sense to you, and even if every heavenly name isn't gotten exactly right, what I have given and will give you in the future is close enough, accurate enough, and important enough, that I want you to use it and benefit from it.
107. To dismiss it altogether and say that some can believe it if they want to, yet it is not for you, is foolishness, as it opens the door to the Enemy to rob you of your faith and belief. Faith is your shield, your defense against the many lies that seek to damage your soul. To disbelieve Me in some respect, to cast away even a small part of your faith, is to lower your shield over a part of your body that you deem nonessential. "Oh, it's just my shoulder. It's pretty padded and there's nothing too vital there. And besides, I don't even believe I'll get hit." So you expose your shoulder, and sure enough, the Enemy launches an arrow into that unprotected part.
108. You might not be too worried at first, as it's not like it's your heart or eye, but what you don't realize is that those arrows are poisoned and wherever they hit can eventually become a mortal wound if it's not cleansed and cared for and treated. A blow to your chest may spread the poison faster than a blow to the foot or hand, yet eventually the poison of doubt will spread through the whole body, killing your spiritual life if you allow it to remain and fester.
109. Do not lower your shield in any area‚ My children. Do not expose any part to the Enemy. Faith does not require full understanding; it only requires belief. Continue to think of your faith as your shield against Enemy arrows, and it will help you to understand and to guard yourself more diligently. You don't have to understand how your shield stops the arrows; you don't have to know exactly how many arrows there are or exactly where they're going to hit; you just have to believe that if you step outside of the shield, you're going to get hit, so you want complete coverage, not exposing any part, no matter how small or nonessential you believe it to be.
110. If you're going to believe Me for anything, I want you to believe Me for everything. If you're going to drink My water, drink it heartily and don't stop to question the strange truths inside of it. Like your Father David said in that old and classic Letter, "They're good for you; they're put there for your nourishment!"
111. By stopping to question, to pick things out that you don't like, by wanting everything to be analyzed and "proven" to you first, you may think you're picking and choosing from many choices and schools of thought, but in fact you only have two: to believe or to disbelieve, to accept or to reject. Rejecting in a small area may take some time before it grows; yet it always will in the end. But to believe in each area, even if you don't understand it fully, is the path to full faith and to eventual understanding.
112. These "hard sayings," these new revelations, these deep truths are not only because I know you need the information, but they're also tests. They're designed to push you past your mortal limits and motivate you to leave behind earthly logic or perceptions, and to instead learn to use your higher senses of faith and belief–-which eventually leads to understanding. If you get stuck on trying to figure it all out, you never will understand. But if you can leave behind the natural, physical, logical explanations and questions, and instead simply believe because it's My Word and you know that I love you and want you to have the information and knowledge you need to successfully win, then the end result of that choice is understanding and clarity and experience and proof--all that you might have desired, but chose to leave behind in favor of simply believing. Understanding is the reward of faith.
113. (Jesus:) Oh, the wonders and marvels of Heaven and the spiritual realm! Wonderful are they, but not past finding out if you ask Me.
114. There are angels, spirit helpers, beings, and worlds and dimensions beyond number! There is much more to see, and it will take you an eternity to see and explore it all. So marvel not at these few little glimpses that I have given you and be not amazed at the beings which inhabit it, and the kings and queens and many others who have gone on before you to make it their habitation. These are but a minuscule sample of all that is yet to come.
115. Some among the children of David marvel at the mention of so many spirit helpers, so many demons, and the variety of beings that I have revealed to you‚ wondering how these things can be. Some even doubt that these things are so, for they seem so grand, so otherworldly, so supernatural and miraculous, when compared to the day-to-day lives you all lead.
116. But that is why faith is so necessary, My dear ones! Go to My Word and build your faith there, and see if these things be so. There you will find many angels–-ten thousand times ten thousand, and thousands of thousands--hundreds of millions of angels. There are archangels, angels which stand upon the earth and the sea, angels with trumpets and vials, with little books and scrolls.
117. There you will also find the spirits of many just men made perfect--many millions from ages past and present. There you will find beasts which have four faces, white horses that fly, chariots of fire, and My Father's mobile throne with its wheels within wheels.
118. There too will you find dragons and beasts, horns and images, serpents and evil spirits like frogs, and the Enemy in all his many guises, even in that of an angel of light.
119. All this is in My written Word. But My written Word is not the end, for I have much more to reveal to you! So be not faithless but believing, My dear ones. Be not like the world, which says "Show me" and "I'll believe it when I see it." In believing, you will see, for I will show you these things.
120. (Mama:) The truths the Lord has revealed to us about the angels and spirit beings and demons and spiritual powers are far-out; they're glimpses of a world that we don't see or sense with our physical senses. They take faith to believe. But the Lord allows it to be that way as a test. He wants us to stretch our spiritual muscles of faith and become stronger in that area. Then once we have accepted, He blesses us with "proof," understanding, and we see clearly what we have up until then believed by faith.
121. If you allow yourself to "pick and choose" what you do or don't believe, you're not only severely disadvantaged in the spiritual warfare by choosing to ignore your enemies as well as those who could be helping you, but you're also leaving your faith open to attack in general, which will eventually result in spiritual weakening. You don't want that!
122. Call on the keys to open your eyes of the spirit, and as you take the steps of faith and belief, the scales of pride, carnal thinking, worldly reasoning, or demanding proof will fall from your eyes, and you'll be able to see more clearly what is the true reality.
* "Old Bottles," ML #242:40–41, Vol.2
* "Show'm Jesus," ML #2074:48-52, Vol.16
* "State of the Nation '95," ML #3017:106-113, Lifelines 22
* "Loving Jesus, Part 5," ML #3031:102-115, GN 663
* "Prophecies on Doubts," ML #3041:79-82‚ Lifelines 23
* "Believing Prophecy," ML #3130:3-138, 204-211, Lifelines 24
* "None of These Things Move Me," ML #3307:41-44‚ GN 906
* "Issues‚ Part 11," ML #3413:211-214, GN 997
* "Obliterate Obstacon‚" ML #3434:1-8, GN 1017
* "So You Want to Be a Disciple?" ML #3458:67-75, GN 1043
* "The Mysterious Keys, Part 2," ML #3473:146-166, GN 1061
* "Which Comes First--The Revelation or the Artwork?" ML #3474:61-62, Post-it GN #12
* "Choices and Consequences, Part 2," ML #3485:172-175, GN 1070
123. (Jesus:) Yours is a life of faith. It's a life of basing your actions, your choices, your belief system, your everything, on My Word, and ignoring everything else when necessary. It's a life that will be greatly rewarded when you step out of the surreal façade the Enemy so carefully sets up to snare mankind and you're able to see--not through a glass darkly, but face to face–-how things truly are. It will be like Neo stepping out of the matrix and seeing reality for the first time. You'll be so glad you gave your life to set others free.
124. (Spirit being:) Though you might feel unpopular at times here on this earth where you must constantly buck the norm and go against the grain, the reality is that there are many more who think like you than those who resent you and disagree with you--you just can't see us right now. But we're out there, we're on your side, and when you awaken in resurrection, you'll see that you were actually with the majority all along--you were the popular ones, the cool ones, the normal ones, and it was everyone else who was weird.
[End of text box.]
Judging People by Their Past
125. (Mama:) The Lord is giving beautiful promises about how He wants to change us--as a Family, as individuals. He can change us, and He's expecting and asking for some big changes. But there's a problem when people keep treating each other the same way they always have, not making room for each other to change. You don't often see the changes all at once that people are making-–usually changes are more gradual, and it's easy to look at the person as they were last month or last year or even five years ago. It's easy to not really take into consideration that the Lord can change people, and He does change people! He can change you, He can change others! Sometimes it's an overnight change, and sometimes it's a change over a longer period of time. We just have to be willing to look at others with new eyes.
126. I know from my experience, too, that if you haven't seen someone for a while, you can talk about them or think about them as they were before, and your actions reflect that, not realizing that they're really changing or have really progressed. It's dangerous to think that way about people, because it can make them feel labeled, or discourage them by making them feel they must not be changing, or aren't capable of change, or that people don't notice the change after all the effort they're making.
127. Sometimes it's familiarity too. It's easy to think that someone who's had a problem for a long time is never going to change--but that's not true! While there's life, there's hope. And especially now, when the Lord is encouraging everyone to really change, and promising that He can help us change, it's important to factor that in, and be aware and sensitive to it, so that you can encourage those around you as they are changing and inspire them to keep changing, rather than hold them back unintentionally by treating them the same way.
128. I received the following from someone on the field. I thought it was well written and expressed the problem clearly:
129. I've come up with a problem that I'd like to ask prayer for and share.
130. I'm taking the renewal seriously; I want change, drastic change. I want to be a completely new vessel‚ one that gives to Jesus ALL, each day, and commits everything to Him for the preservation of the Family and to obey the Lord and His Words and direction He is taking us.
131. Because of this specific commitment to giving Jesus all each day, specifically asking Him for His help in giving all to Him… I'm finding that He answers, and He does it, as we take the little steps to obey. These magic words of, "Jesus, I give my all to You," and then following and obeying and claiming the keys over every area each day, really work wonders. I feel in just a few weeks like a completely different person; wholehearted, loving, diligent, and hard-working, not caring about myself, as well as a much deeper love for the Words, for my family, the Family, leadership, and the lost.
132. But I feel a bit discouraged when I feel that others do not believe that people can change drastically overnight, and still look on them, on me, with labels of the past, even labels that may not really be true--especially people who don't know me very well.
133. This also I take to Jesus and ask Him to just take care of it, as He promised to do with everything else.
134. But I just wanted to mention that with these words of renewal coming out, there are some people taking them seriously and finding great change in their whole "hard drive," in their personality, reactions, deep in their hearts that is affecting everything else in their lives.
135. For me personally I don't want to be labeled as a certain person, because I'm not that anymore, and with each day it gets better. I pray that we will not look on others with glasses of the past but in the positive light that all things change, including people that embrace it. If our reactions to people are based on familiarity of the past, then it closes the door for growth and radical change. If we look on others with eyes of a fixed mindset with regards to that person, we stop ourselves from growing, and may kill the other person's initiative to change.
136. I share these things because of something a good friend said to me today which made me realize that if a good friend could think those things, what would others be thinking?
137. If we are bathing every part of our lives‚ hearts, minds and spirit, our mode of operation, way of thinking, habits, reactions, with prayer, praise, the power of the keys and deep feeding on the Word and asking and expecting complete change, then I believe and know it will happen. All I can do is praise for the great things that are happening as a result of the renewal and GNs. I'm finding the answers to everything I wanted and needed to change my life, and it is only the beginning.
God's mind on the matter:
138. (Spirit helper:) Now that you have the keys and are learning to use their power, you're going to realize more and more that what has up until this time seemed simply impossible to you can be and is possible! This means that more miracles will happen and that changes will come quicker. The Family hasn't entirely grasped this yet; many people aren't fully aware of the difference that the keys can make, along with the undefeated weapon of praise that you're just learning how to wield and use effectively.
139. One thing's for sure, the Lord does want to help you grow spiritually and to change to become the person He wants and needs you to be. This means that now more than ever, when you ask for His help to change in an area of your life, He's going to help you to do it. You still have the majesty of choice. That hasn't changed and isn't going to. But the power you have in the spirit to help you is now complete, if you will only fulfill the conditions and use it. So, providing you make the right decisions, all things are possible to you now. And regardless of how weak or incapable you feel, you can make the right decisions if you choose to. And if you do, with the keys of the Kingdom and all the power of Heaven behind you, everything really is possible.
140. This is a mindset change that many in the Family need to make--and make soon. Each person needs to more fully realize the change that has occurred in the spirit and how different your situation is now compared to before. There have been major changes both in Heaven and in Hell, and everywhere in-between. The situation‚ the tactics and weapons on the Enemy's side have recently changed too. His power and forces of evil have been unleashed upon the earth as never before.
141. You know from the Lord's Word that in the End, Satan will be cast down to the earth‚ having great fury and power. He'll actually be there in the flesh and will set up his headquarters on earth. Well, it's not quite time for that yet, but just as you've been commissioned to "prepare the way of your Lord"--and just as we in the spirit world have been released to help you more in these days, and will be even more so at the very end right before our Husband's return--so has Satan commissioned his top officers and their forces to prepare the way for his arrival on earth. This is why the battles and attacks of the Enemy have been diversified, amplified, and multiplied.
142. But our loving King has equipped you in spirit for these dark Last Days; He's given you the power of the keys of the Kingdom! This is the weapon He has chosen and designed for you for these times of battle, and you've got to learn to use the keys and access their full power. The power you have through the keys to change both yourself and the situation around you, either on earth or in the heavens, is unmatchable and unparalleled by anything you've seen or heard thus far! And the weapon of praise will see you through any battle, protect you, strengthen you, and bring you victory, no matter what the Enemy pulls out against you. Though the battles are greater, the victories will be much greater, through the power of the keys.
143. The power to change has been given to you. When you realize and believe this more fully, your faith will grow and you'll begin to truly expect the answer or the change, either for yourself personally or for others, rather than just hoping for it or trying to have faith that it could happen. And that is where praise comes in. Praise will bring the answers, and will strengthen and sustain you while you wait. Praise makes the conditions right for our Lord to do the miracle. Praise enhances the power of the keys, because it makes each person who is sincerely praising a more powerful and effective wielder of the keys.
144. So one of the biggest steps to growth in this area of looking at others differently and having faith that there will be change , will come more easily when each person more fully realizes that now with the keys of the Kingdom, whatever they bind on earth will be bound in Heaven.
145. When you "get" this, when you understand that all things do not continue as they were, that things are not the same as before, and as such you cannot continue "business as usual," there will be a change in attitude, and that will make a big difference in many ways. And one of those ways is how you look at others and the changes each one is trying to make.
146. Many need to have a mindset change, and this needs to happen soon, because you'll be limited until you do. You need to be aware that this change is needed, and you need to take active steps of progress in this area--and it all begins with strengthening your faith‚ and realizing that things have really changed. You have a lot more available to you than you did before. Change is possible--both for you and for others. No matter how difficult or personal or stubborn it's been before, you now have what you need to make those changes a reality. Once you realize that this lack of faith and expecting things to continue on the same as before is a weak point, you can start looking for ways and opportunities to grow and stretch in this area. You can start praying for change and helping those around you‚ and really believing that it's possible.
147. Now is a special time for growth and change. The Lord is preparing the Family for battle, and there is a need for change and improvement on each person's part. Everyone needs change in one area or another, and this too will help this situation, as everyone will need to be both giving and receiving. Maybe one week you'll be giving to someone through having faith for them and by trying to look at them in a new light, but it's very likely that next week or some time soon after that, you'll be on the receiving end, and them showing faith in you will mean a lot and make a big difference to you.
148. It comes back to living the Law of Love and doing unto others as you'd have them do unto you. It isn't always easy to do and is a big responsibility, but it's something the Lord has asked you to do, and He expects it of you.
149. One practical thing you can do is when someone asks for prayer for something, a weak area or something the Lord is asking them to change in, everyone else should also make it a point to pray for themselves, that they will expect the change in that person and be open to seeing and receiving it. That is a simple step of faith, openness, and expectancy, but it's an important one. When the Lord has shown someone you live with to ask for prayer, you can take it that He's also asking you to stretch in the area of looking at them with new eyes, with the eyes of faith.
150. Another thing you can do is to make a commitment to pray for that person in their efforts to change. Putting it on your personal prayer list, and including their personal requests for change in your intercessory prayer time, will help make it more personal for you. You'll be more inspired when you see the changes, because it will be the fruits of your labors too. You'll be rejoicing in the victory with them and thanking the Lord for the miracles together. You'll be a lot more tuned in to noticing the changes if you've really been pouring out your heart in prayer for them.
151. The Lord wants to show you the great power He has to change you and to give you your heart's desires. When you ask for prayer from others, you not only benefit from the power of united prayer and humility‚ but the Lord is going to start to use it more and more to demonstrate to you and others the great miracle-working power which can be had through using the keys.
152. (Jesus:) Here's a little word picture that will give you some "food for thought" on this topic:
153. Think of the Family as a large show troupe. You are My showcase to the world, and I've been working with you, trying to train and teach you to sing together, harmonize, dance, smile, etc. It's taking a long time, and it's no easy task to get so many people performing together in unison.
154. But now many are starting to catch on. Those who couldn't sing on key are getting better, and you've each made tremendous progress in your weak areas. You're learning to stay in step with Me, follow My rhythm, and channel My love to the world through your smiles and songs that tell about Me.
155. We've done shows and performances together in the past and some things have gone wrong. Mistakes have been made that have caused songs to be sloppy, there have been harmonies that were out of tune and painful to listen to, people who didn't smile enough and reflect My love in that way, etc.
156. Now as we're practicing for the grand finale, we've run into a problem. I'm getting a lot of comments like this: "I don't want to be in that song with so-and-so–-they're always off beat." "Last time I sang a duet with her, she kept going flat–-it sounded horrible, and was so embarrassing." "He never smiles. I don't want to be next to him." "The last time we danced together, he was out of step."
157. While many of these things were in fact a concern, what you have to realize is that I've been working with each one personally, training them, and giving them the individualized help, practice, and coaching they need. Much progress has been made with each individual. Each one who is practicing to participate in this show has recommitted, is working harder than ever, and is being placed in the perfect spot by Me.
158. So I'm asking you all--for the sake of the show--to leave the past behind, to take note of the progress. I'm asking you to practice another duet with that girl who embarrassed you last time, and take note that her voice has indeed become beautiful over the past months, and will now complement yours perfectly. This time your song will bring many to Me, and touch some very hard hearts with its depth and beauty.
159. I'm asking you to give others the chance to do better--the same chance that you want others to give you. You don't want to be forever labeled, and reminded about the time you tripped and lost your balance, fell over and sprained your ankle in front of 200 people, do you? You want others to understand that you've practiced long and hard, and are now one of the better dancers.
160. Will you do it for the sake of making this the most outstanding performance ever? The only way it'll ever come out powerful enough to get the world's attention is if you all work together, each one doing their part.
161. If you refuse to accept and embrace the changes, the new moves‚ the fact that others have progressed, and work with them accordingly, I'll have to move you further and further to the back, and eventually take you backstage‚ or out of the show altogether, because you'll be a hindrance to the progress we're all trying to make together.
162. So if you're struggling to leave the past behind and see those on your team in the new light I'm asking you to, come and have a "leave it all behind" heart-to-heart talk with Me. Ask Me for My heavenly perspective and some fresh insight on the person you're struggling with, how they've changed, and how you should look at and treat them now, according to all they've learned. Ask Me to show you footage of them doing the things they couldn't do before, and doing them well. I'll show you, and help you realize how foolish and illogical it would be to continue thinking they can't do it, or will always do it in the wrong way they used to.
163. Ask for the humility to realize that you've made your fair share of mistakes as well, and that I haven't given up on you because of it. Ask Me for a key-powered boost of love to help you look at and treat others the way you want to be looked at and treated--fairly and lovingly and with eyes of faith, seeing the potential and the growth and progress. Ask Me to help you realize the dangers and consequences of not forgiving and loving and moving forward.
164. You'll find that as you free others from the chains of the past, you will find personal freedom to progress yourself, and the end result will be success!
165. (Mama:) The Lord is not only promising that He can change us and wants to help us change, but He's given us everything we need to do our part and fight for those changes! This is reality--each of us will hopefully be changing, and our loved ones and co-workers will be changing too.
166. It's so important to support people in their efforts to change, encourage them to keep going‚ keep changing, and notice the improvements and cheer them on. It's such an important part of the change process for those around to adopt and start looking at the person differently, so that it solidifies the change. Otherwise, even if the person is trying really hard on their own, if those around them keep treating them the same old way, expecting the "old them" to come through, it discourages them and makes it much harder, and can sometimes be the cause of their giving up!
167. Nothing can stand against the power I have placed in the hands of the children of David. Take it up, wield it, call on the keys, use the weapon of praise, and victory is yours--guaranteed!
* "Lessons of Love," ML #2975:37-48, 55, Lifelines 22
* "The Day of Renewal," ML #3164:3-45, Lifelines 24
* "You Can Make It, Part 1," ML #3277:7-18, 115-132, GN 880
* "Changing Deeply Ingrained Habits and Mindsets‚" ML #3324:4-24, GN 929
* "Rising Above," ML #3379:52-66, Post-it GN #2
* "United Prayer Power," ML #3404:126-131, GN 994
168. (Jesus:) Stop and think about some of the great men and women of God you've heard about, and how each of them had a turning point, or several turning points, where someone delivered My message to them, or showed faith in them, or encouraged them when they were down, or reminded them of My promises, and it gave them faith to carry on--and they carried on into a great work for Me. Be there for your brothers and sisters and companions in battle when they reach their "turning point." Be Me for your loved ones, your co-workers, your mates. Be there ready to uphold them when they stumble, comfort them when they're discouraged, and point them back to My never-failing promises that will give them faith to carry on. Show that support, that faith, that belief that with Me, they can do anything I ask of them!--And they will!
169. (Jesus:) I have said to be not conformed, but to be transformed. Transformed into what? When you are nonconformed, you will then be transformed into supermen and superwomen of God. The appeal of the world will have no hold on you; you'll see beyond the temporary and have power in the spiritual. You will transcend the normal human boundaries to become something greater, something never seen before in history.
[End of text box.]
170. (Mama:) Many of you still have the bad habit of using bad language. Some of you even wonder what's so bad about it--you feel it's being prudish or overly conservative or even churchy to prohibit it.
God's mind on the matter:
171. (Jesus:) With more emphasis being put on using the undefeatable weapon of praise at all times, the Devil's murmuring curse words and other forms of foul language should be the last things to be heard coming out of your mouths! No matter whether you call it a habit or you feel that you need such language to express your intense feelings on a matter, using bad language is really just the Devil's substitute for My good words of praise.
172. When you're upset or something doesn't go right, if you're mad or really wanting to express disgust, spouting off the dirty words the System uses, the horrible metaphors and names for people or situations, is really the opposite of what I'm trying to teach you to do. I'm trying to get you all to praise Me for the good and the bad, to find ways and angles that you can glorify Me in everything. Using curse words is totally the opposite of the way I'm leading.
173. You might think that it's a relatively small thing, but to Me, because I see in the spirit, it's not so small. It's voicing the Enemy's negativity. It's letting your mouth and spirit just say whatever it feels like, rather than disciplining yourself to have godly reactions as part of your testimony and witness, and even just as a disciple who wants to glorify Me. It's giving in to the spirit of the world–-the disgusting, crass, selfish, impatient, murmuring, unloving spirit of the Enemy, which he's always trying to inflict on as many as possible.
174. I genuinely dislike it. I especially don't like it when you direct it at each other, or you use it to express your anger instead of overcoming that anger by rising above with the weapon of praise. It actually bothers Me when I hear those words come out of your mouth, stealing and replacing what could have been awesome words of praise that would glorify Me and cause Me to move on your behalf.
175. If you're in pain, claim a key. If you're upset, desperately look for the good and use praise. If you're annoyed, use words of love even though you feel like anything but that--a soft answer that turns away wrath. If you're filled with righteous indignation, claim full possession so that My words will come through you; and even if they're strong words, they'll be used in the right time and place. There's a better alternative in every situation in which curse words would spring to your lips.
176. Don't see it as a small or meaningless thing that doesn't even matter. It matters to Me‚ it matters to your brothers and sisters, it certainly matters to your sheep and to outsiders, and it makes a very big difference in your sample, and even in your spiritual health. To be so used to saying those words or hearing them that you don't even really care anymore is a sign that you're letting that and possibly other aspects of your spiritual life slip. You're not being vigilant and on guard against any of the Enemy's inroads. Also‚ you're not seeking to apply the Word as much as a disciple should, as the Word states very clearly My position on this, as well as stating what I do want your mouths to be full of--praise and thankfulness to Me.
177. There are all kinds of excuses people have for using these words, but as I said, there is a better alternative in each situation. Even if you're just using the "milder" alternatives that people use, like diluted versions of the "real thing," isn't it so much better to ditch the habit completely of shooting off expletives in preference of learning to claim a key, say a prayer, praise Me, and so on? Even if it's not such a "bad word," if it's an idle word, wouldn't you prefer it replaced with something much more powerful and effective?
178. There are also those, sad to say, who use these words not because they really even feel the need to do so, but because they want to sound cool, tough, or worldly. These people have usually seen too many movies‚ have been too polluted by foul-mouthed System music and many other worldly vices, and they think that it's nice to pepper their speech with these as well. They also must stop and learn to use better words, which bring grace unto the hearers. There's no excuse, after all I've said in the Word on this subject, to be knowingly slipping these words into your conversation just because you like the image or "sound" that it gives you. That's not acceptable.
179. You will all become so much happier and even more powerful in spirit if you learn to use My better alternatives. Dump the dirty language entirely and look to build new habits in which you use the new weapons and powerful praise offensives instead of the Enemy's dirty, disgusting counterfeits.
180. One last tip is that foul language is a problem that can really be purged from among you if you're all faithful to be your brother's keeper. You're all learning lessons on sensitivity and being able to "take it" from each other, so put that into practice with this issue. If someone keeps slipping, gently and lovingly correct them, or show a better sample by praising or claiming the keys or whatever is a better substitute. And if you're the one who gets corrected, please take it, and don't get sensitive and accuse the other person of being self-righteous. Try to realize that I have asked it of them in order that you all might rid yourself of this bad habit, and thus please your Husband and King even more.
181. (Dad:) I've heard some of you use the excuse that I used strong language on occasion, so it can't be that bad. But I don't think you'll find one example where I used it and it wasn't appropriate and even needed.
182. The problem in our Homes today is that it's gotten way out of hand, and even if it's used appropriately once or twice, people take that as a license to use it many more times inappropriately. When one or two bad words are allowed–-even if it's only in appropriate circumstances--others who have less wisdom take it a little further. Eventually you wind up with extremely inappropriate usage, the kids are using it, and people are using words that are not meant to be used in a dirty way, and their meaning is distorted and sullied. Words like "fuck," or the name of our wonderful Lover and Savior, need to remain pure and clean.
183. There's just a lot more of the world in our Homes in general right now than is healthy, and we need to purge it out. Things have gotten out of hand in that respect, and that's why the Lord has brought along the renewal. Adults, teens, and children alike are used to taking in too much of the world. So even though there's nothing really wrong with using an occasional bad word when you're speaking about something that really deserves strong language--such as the "God-damned System" or the "Devil's shit," etc.--because this is a problem that's gotten out of hand, I would like to ask you all to please remove those words from your vocabulary entirely, at least until our Homes are more in line with what the Lord is asking, and all the kids have stopped using all forms of bad language.
184. It will take a while for good habits to take hold and for this foul pollution to be cleansed completely. There might possibly come a time when everyone is more disciplined and aware and tight in the spirit that it will be okay to use an occasional bad word appropriately‚ and there might come a time when it's even needed in your witness. But for now, let's ban it completely so that we can get back to the standard of loving, godly speech that is a must for our Homes. If your words are causing someone to stumble, beware. "By your words you will be justified, and by your words you will be condemned" (Mat.12:37).
185. (Mama:) We're dumping the dirty language, all of it, including words that might otherwise be okay to use on appropriate occasions, because it has gotten out of hand and is being used extremely inappropriately. Ask the Lord to help you replace those strong negative words with words of praise and prayer and automatically calling on the keys. It won't come naturally; you will have to really fight to make that change, especially if it's a deeply ingrained habit. But imagine what praising out loud, calling on the keys, or saying a prayer during those times instead of reverting to foul language will do for your spiritual life!
186. We will all need to be our brother's keeper too, and remind each other, to make this a success in our Homes. Pray for love, wisdom, conviction and humility--essential ingredients to being your brother's keeper without self-righteousness.
187. No matter what your natural reaction might be or how long you've been reacting that way, the keys can help you change!
* "Getting Back on Track for Jesus, Part 2," ML #2891:90-95, Lifelines 21
* "You Are What You Watch," ML #3182:19-21, GN 787
* "Dump the Dirty Language," ML #3185, GN 790
* "Killer or Healer--What Is Your Tongue?" ML #3188:30-58, GN 793
* "Power of the Tongue," 1-5, Word Basics
188. (Jesus:) The answer to almost every problem or lack in the Family today lies in greater purity of spirit and less exposure to and contamination from the things of the world. As you sever ties with the unclean things and instead reach out for more of My Spirit and life, you will find miracles, supply, success in your outreach, greater works, unity, happiness, and blessings of every sort.
Copyright © 2004 by The Family International
(Favorite line from Jesus: "Please don't wrest My scriptures to your own advantage." !!!)