While I was in prayer I saw adolescent children outside playing jump rope.
One of the girls started jumping, and did so for some time and another girl joined her and then another. Soon two girls were holding two end parts to two ropes and then they started to swing the ropes so that a person could jump in and keep within the various distances from each rope.
Soon there were teams of girls making it very difficult. The girls that jumped could only do it for a short time as it became harder and they lost the fun or joy of it. The leaders then, whisked them away without giving them any explanation or time to rest.
Yes the girls started off as children having exercise and fun and it turned from fun to disappointment. These could not keep up with the goals being set in motion. As the team grew, those who became captains within the team began to add rules and constraints that kept the team in turmoil.
The tag team eventually couldn’t keep up with the demands either. Many of them began to fall out. The captains and powers that be, were intolerant of those who couldn’t meet the requirements. It was no longer fun and something they did for the joy it brought.
I heard the phrase, “Jump through hoops” and God said, “Guard against, pride, being driven, legalism and blind submission.”
In Dictionary.com, the verb phrase “jump through hoops” means:
- To serve, obey, or accommodate someone without question, especially in a harried, frantic way: You had to jump through hoops to please that guy.
- To exert oneself mightily; strain: I had to jump through hoops to get you that job.
We must please God and not men. God will always be first. Pride, legalism and demanding perfection comes from fleshly mindsets.
It happens subtly and in innocence. First we start off trusting God but through the works of the flesh we evolve into depending on ourselves and others; as we compare ourselves to others.
“For we dare not make ourselves of the number, or compare ourselves with some that commend themselves; but they measuring themselves by themselves, and comparing themselves among themselves, are not wise,” 2 Corinthians.10:12 KJV.
If there were a way to be perfect we would not need to rely on the sacrifice of God’s dear son; who is Christ son of the living God, and he finished the work once and for all!
If people would be honest they would admit that they can no longer keep up that pace of being driven.
Many will fall aside unable to keep up while the others judge, condemn and despise the fallen in their heart. Pride keeps a person from mentioning of it. These don’t want the others to think they are not in step with the leaders agenda.
Being performance driven also causes disillusionment and a fall. However, in reality, it is actually very good news for that believer when the revelation comes!
When a person comes to the end of self by running out of their own power, they become open to God’s power and purpose through the righteousness that only comes through faith in Christ alone.
These surrender! These come face to face with the truth and revelation of God’s amazing Grace!
It is actually good news for our fallen comrade! We meet them where they are. It is then that good Samaritans show up to pour in the oil and the wine (as the religious cross the road to avoid them).
God sends you a personal good Samaritan! God sent you an outcast too, to teach you and to minister God’s amazing grace! Wow huh? His grace is so amazing! Considered by the Jews to be outcast and half breeds, God sends you help from those who understand what it means to be rejected and hated.
Never forget where you came from or how you started. Your testimony will reach so many who need to see your works in action by meeting their greatest need, just as they are, you go into the highways and byways and compel them to come in.
“And Jesus answering said, A certain man went down from Jerusalem to Jericho, and fell among thieves, which stripped him of his raiment, and wounded him, and departed, leaving him half dead. And by chance there came down a certain priest that way: and when he saw him, he passed by on the other side. And likewise a Levite, when he was at the place, came and looked on him, and passed by on the other side. But a certain Samaritan, as he journeyed, came where he was: and when he saw him, he had compassion on him, and went to him, and bound up his wounds, pouring in the oil and wine and set him on his own beast, and brought him to an inn, and took care of him. And on the morrow when he departed, he took out two pence, and gave them to the host, and said unto him, Take care of him; and whatsoever thou spendest more, when I come again, I will repay thee. Which now of these three, thinkest thou, was a neighbour unto him that fell among the thieves? And he said, He that shewed mercy on him. Then said Jesus unto him, Go, and do thou likewise,” Luke 10:30-37 KJV.
Those who have been through life’s most hard, desperate and stinging experiences are the choicest counselors that God can use.
Being spiritually wore out also opens the door to so much confusion and disorder. And what is worse, as you fall by the wayside, those you thought were for you now pass you up on the other side and say see ya!
NEVER put any confidence in man, even if it is in a friend. God is to remain first in our lives. As you watch others go upstream passing you by, say a prayer for them because these will eventually be tested and suffer burnout.
We cannot burn the candle at both ends. We are created to host the presence of God on the throne of our hearts. We yield our bodies unto Him and his word is a lamp unto my feet and a light unto my path.
Hypocrisy knows no bounds and it is alive and well with those who trust in themselves. Then as the course goes, being driven brings disillusionment and a fall.
It is sad though. I have seen how the person hides the situation from others to attempt to keep up appearances, but they never ultimately will.
Being driven happens when we trust in our own self righteousness. The strong man is pride. It says “we must perform to be accepted by man’s standards.” We become self righteous and when we neglect the righteousness that only comes from Christ there is no more sacrifice for sins.
We are to be forever centered on Christ’s finished work on Calvary. God graces us to fullfil his work in the earth, but not all are graced to do it your way. We each carry within us DNA spiritually and physically.
To be self righteous is to do works to make oneself seemingly righteousness without relying on the one who made us righteous who is Christ the redeemer!
To have balance and order in God, brings peace, hope and joy. We are to serve the LORD with gladness!
“Let us therefore fear, lest, a promise being left us of entering into his rest, any of you should seem to come short of it. For unto us was the gospel preached, as well as unto them: but the word preached did not profit them, not being mixed with faith in them that heard it. For we which have believed do enter into rest, as he said, As I have sworn in my wrath, if they shall enter into my rest: although the works were finished from the foundation of the world,” Hebrews 4:1-3 KJV.
Can we keep going at that level?
Were striving, being driven and performance driven, Why?
All of these issues wear you down to create burn out. When we are preaching and practicing a performance based religion, people will begin to fall out or pretend they are doing what is being said but they really know the truth about themselves.
These give lip service but they know the truth. These want to fit so bad they accept religious abuse.
My prayer for myself and others is that God will bring us to the end of self (righteous) and that HE will remove us from any abusive, religious bondage.
All works that are not done through God’s grace will eventually produce burnout. It will wear you out physically, emotionally and spiritually.
The 23rd Psalm shows us the picture of how our Chief Shepherd cares for his flock. God is very concerned with his precious sheep and lambs. Look at a sheep and lambs.
Can you imagine them being driven? Cattle are driven. Jesus is our chief shepherd he laid down his life for His sheep.
Sheep are gently led by the Shepherd and if one has strayed, the shepherd leaves the ninety nine and find the one to restore back to the fold. In the night seasons, the Shepherd will lead his flock to a sheep fold.
It is a rock enclosure where there is one entrance and the Chief Shepherd makes sure all of the sheep and lambs are in there. Once the sheep and lambs are in the fold and cared for, the shepherd lays down his life at the entrance and guards the flock that no wild beast can gain access.
Sheep and lambs cannot be driven. A godly shepherd is one who personally leads the flock to lush green pastures, still waters yes, and even makes them lay down, restoring their soul not driving them to insanity!
I thank God for his example to us of how true shepherds are. Sheep are gently led, cattle are driven.
Many have no idea what’s it like to receive true encouragement from the LORD and his people. Be careful who you receive from for all are not for you.
There is such aggression in the body, and it is all about who’s who and what is what, and who you know.
Instead, the gentle lead of the shepherd knows your name. It’s not about whose ordination and who you know. It’s about how he knows you!
When Christ is saying come away with me beloved, I want to hold you and comfort you. Man can minister to a certain point, but we must teach others that we each must have a deep relationship with the LORD in our own lives.
It is nice to have positive validation from those who know your life and the condition of our lives. Our greatest ally is one who understands the life you live, sees the positive and negative parts of our own existence but choose to love, pray and accept our full self.
Beloved, that is unconditional love and the love I desire to give.
There is spiritual abuse in the body. This affects our total being, and God doesn’t want us to accept that and it should not be tolerated.
In closing, anytime there is a course of corruption, God must bring a change in motion. For those of you who have been analyzed by others; realize that rebellion and Jezebel spirits will try to revert to analyzing you because they know who you are and will try to intimidate you to shut up.
These spirits love to use Christian brothers and sisters to shake your faith and accuse you of all sorts of things in the name of Jesus. You need to politely let them know that you are not in agreement with their words and do not receive them.
Saints, if you get addressed with such spirits, let them know they have no authority over you and that you are the beloved of God, in Jesus name.
Realize this! The enemy knows who you are, and is desperately trying to shut you down.
May God shake us so much to change our motion to devotion to Christ the Messiah! Forgive them, release them and let them go! Amen?
In HIS Grace and Mercy,
~ Sherry Edwards Mackey
Sherry Edwards Mackey
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