6am Oxford.  Staff Office.

Mark Parker is blasting it out just like he did last year.  I am amazed at his pace.  He is YWAM’s training director for New Zealand.  He ran our staff training in Auckland in January.  He showed up here at the base yesterday about 10am, lectured for almost 4 hours straight, ate lunch with a student to “listen,” taught our staff in the Basic Leadership School all afternoon, ate dinner, did some personal ministry that made him late for the evening lecture, showed up at 740pm, and went “hard-out” til after 10pm before having everybody stand and pray out a declaration one by one, as lead, to verbally commit to whatever God wanted to do this week.

It’s all about Lordship-being willing to be obedient.  I wonder if all mental problems and indecision come down to that issue.  If I’m indecisive toward God, I will be the same everywhere else.  I am holding back the last “bit” from the Lord.  “Take my life, my all, my everything,” but the whole pie is not truly his.  I make some of the plans.  I keep some vice or comfort hidden away under an excuse.  Maybe the REAL power of the Holy Spirit is there in that last bit.  I have had seasons where I gave it all and went from standing beside the Alter to getting back on it as the living sacrifice Paul talks about in Romans,  “Offer your bodies as

The guy on the Alter vs. the Guy off..

living sacrifices…”

There might be one thing I think is THE THING and I’m haunted by it day and night-some sort of unconfessed sin or thing I am unwilling to do.  Then I give it up or do it and step out.  Usually, this is where the REAL struggle begins.  I am “on the Alter-the living sacrifice”-or at least I think so.  When I read Watchman Nee’s book, the Spiritual Man, he makes it sound like there is some sort of freedom after that place-that a man can reach a spiritual level where he is not battling with petty sins every waking second and there is a better life even here on earth.  I have never been able to hang on long enough to get there.  I’ll eventually grab some “comfort” back in whatever form I can and stay there for a long time until the cycle repeats itself.

As no one is discharged in time of war,

So wickedness will not release those who practice it.

Ecclesiastes 8:8b

Maybe that has something to do with it.  I have engaged in plenty of wilful sin over the years.  They are attached somehow and will not let go without an absolute shoot-out year after year.  Mark got saved at 19 and never looked back.  I got saved at 4 or 5, looked all over the place, “got saved” every day for about 10 years as kid for fear of going to hell, then just plain quit trying all together and did anything I could find for year, then came back, recommitted, and here I am today.  I might ask, “Please remove this or that, Lord.”  And his answer might be, “My grace is sufficient.”  What other way is there than to keep trying no matter the results or the feelings?

1 Therefore, I urge you, brothers, in view of God’s mercy, to offer your bodies as living sacrifices, holy and pleasing to God—this is your spiritual act of worship. 2 Do not conform any longer to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is—his good, pleasing and perfect will.

Romans 12:1-2

The redemption here is to be obedient the best I can and focus on our students.  We all know selfishness doesn’t lead anywhere good.  If we dwell on the problems and the sin, it’s hard to see the Lord.

Full circle.  Just thought I’d write down some of the process…