It Starts in the Spirit
By Fred Pruitt
I loved your letter, mainly because of your openness and honesty, to share with a stranger the inner workings of your life. You mention you want to share these things you’re seeing and hearing with someone else besides God and your wife, so I don’t think you’ll mind if I paraphrase you a little bit use your questions and situations for not only you but for the people who will benefit from your story. So, I’ll just start with your first paragraph.
“Thank you for your proclamation of truth. My head is still objecting, but my spirit cries out: Yes, this is the way, this is the truth, this is the life in Jesus.”
I know what you mean about your “head still objecting, but my spirit cries out: Yes, this is the way!” My friend, you’ve been touched. You are “seeing” the only way it is possible to “see” these things, and that is this is not coming from your own mind or even from the ideas and truths you hear from others, but it is as Jesus said to Peter, “Blessed art thou, Simon Barjona: for flesh and blood hath not revealed it unto thee, but my Father which is in heaven.” (Matt 16:17).
It is the Spirit wooing you deeper IN, rather than drawing you out! You “know” this with a different “knowing capacity” than you previously lived. All before our “knower” has brought us “understanding” of the objective truths or facts of the world, in a mainly “conceptual” way. Academic. It’s your objective conceptual “head” that is freaking out, because it is losing control. From birth this has been the only way we could operate, working from soulish independence, seeing everything and everybody in this same objective “as they are in their flesh appearance” way. We see “at” them.
What has upset the applecart of that still-necessary conceptual brain or intellect, has been the revelation of the Spirit. Spirit revelation, Spirit understanding, and that revelation or Word that comes overturns our world completely. Our intellect takes some time taking all that in, mainly because the intellect has no capacity to hold onto Spirit truth precisely because Spirit truth is not objective in any way. Our intellectual brain can’t hold on to Spirit truth because it is not a “thing” that can be grasped. “
Jesus tells us exactly what it is in His conversation with Nicodemus. “The wind bloweth where it wants to, and thou hearest the sound thereof, but canst not tell whence it cometh, and whither it goeth: so is every one that is born of the Spirit.”
The first time that began to come clear for me, I was driving back home after having my first meeting with Norman Grubb in the Fall of 1980. It was about an hour’s drive and my inner world was having little inner explosions. It was like my brain was overloading at this up-gush from within me of Spirit truth. It was like Niagara Falls in my inner self on that ride back home. For the first time, after seven years as a “born-again” Christian and “filled with the Spirit,” I began to understand that everything I had been seeking, even the “things of God,” were really only outer things because that’s all I knew. All the things I “sought” from God were separate from me and I had to “do stuff” to get them. Only if I put forth enough of the right kind of sincerity and effort would I see those godly desires come to fruition. But on that car ride back home, everything changed! Whereas before I was always looking for God to reward me and send me blessings of various kinds, in a sort of tit-for-tat deal I thought I had with God. (That’s called “the Law” by the way.) Like I said, EVERYTHING changed, and God turned my life upside down that day driving down Highway 41. When He said that rivers of Living Water would flow out of our innermost being when we believe, O my goodness, now I see. Where has that elusive “treasure” been all this time of my wanderings and questionings with tears. It’s already IN ME! I don’t have to have a pep-rally to get God to do something. BELIEVE!!!
Like you said, your head was freaking out, while your spirit was crying, YES YES YES!
And that “head stuff,” He’ll sort it all out!
“I look back and see His fingerprints so clearly. I know, that I know, that I know that He brought me to where I am now. I am exactly where I should be. But I look forward and it is all foggy. I get glimpses of the light, and flashes of what is ahead, but the winds of doctrine so quickly blow away the fragile certainty. But His love is there, and comfort replaces the panic. I take another step.”
Yes Yes, it’s all been Him all along. It doesn’t matter that you didn’t know it. You couldn’t “know it” until the day came the Spirit opened up the truth in you. We ALL start out with seeing only the outer and it’s hard to give up, because it’s all we’ve ever experienced. Spirit reality and truth is suspicious to the intellectual mind. The “outer” is right there before us in easy-to-see reality. It’s solid, we can touch it and know for sure that it’s “real.” But this inner stuff, “No way,” the brain says. So we give it a rest, and look into the Spirit from within and begin to live from the Mind of Christ we find there, known ONLY by the Spirit in us and not the flesh mind.
You wonder why the “way ahead” is foggy? The reason is we do not need to know about “tomorrow.” We have only today. And today, the Way is Jesus. He IS the way. It is a daily life of the Spirit manifesting in our mortal (perishing) flesh. If you are in Christ, this is You! And you know you are!
Therefore, every today we live the Way and whatever those futures bring us are at the hand of the Lord not only for our good, but for the good of all. Whatever it is. Rich or poor, healthy or unwell, black or white or brown, we are the DWELLING PLACE of His glory!
I know about “panic,” too! I know what it is to be stranded, to lose a job or a house, and other things as well. The answer to panic always starts with, “But God ….” He will never leave us or forsake us, that’s what He said. He will bring us through to the other side.
I used to think it was presumptuous of me to believe certain scriptures could be claimed by me, but it is only holy boldness, not of me but by the Spirit coming through grace, that I am able to see and believe. Perhaps there’s something here for you, too!
“He that dwelleth in the secret place of the most High shall abide under the shadow of the Almighty. I will say of the LORD, He is my refuge and my fortress: my God; in him will I trust. Surely he shall deliver thee from the snare of the fowler, and from the noisome pestilence. He shall cover thee with his feathers, and under his wings shalt thou trust: his truth shall be thy shield and buckler. Thou shalt not be afraid for the terror by night; nor for the arrow that flieth by day; Nor for the pestilence that walketh in darkness; nor for the destruction that wasteth at noonday. A thousand shall fall at thy side, and ten thousand at thy right hand; but it shall not come nigh thee. Only with thine eyes shalt thou behold and see the reward of the wicked. Because thou hast made the LORD, which is my refuge, even the most High, thy habitation; There shall no evil befall thee, neither shall any plague come nigh thy dwelling. For he shall give his angels charge over thee, to keep thee in all thy ways. They shall bear thee up in their hands, lest thou dash thy foot against a stone. Thou shalt tread upon the lion and adder: the young lion and the dragon shalt thou trample under feet. Because he hath set his love upon me, therefore will I deliver him: I will set him on high, because he hath known my name. He shall call upon me, and I will answer him: I will be with him in trouble; I will deliver him, and honour him. With long life will I satisfy him, and show him my salvation.”
END PART ONE