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Food for the Day: Watchman Nee

March 13, 2009


In about two weeks I will be done with teaching as an English teach in Thailand!  It’s a bittersweet time as I prepare to say goodbye to students and friends that I care deeply about, and prepare to come back home to friends and family that I also care deeply about.

Because it is exam week, I am going to take a break from natural disasters.  I don’t have much brain energy to spare right now! 🙂

For now, let me leave you with some food for your soul:

“Today, even amongst Christians, there can be found much of that spirit that wants to give as little as possible to the Lord, and yet to get as much as possible from Him.  The prevailing though today is of being used, as though that were the one thing that mattered.  That my little rubber band should be stretched to the very limit seems all important.  But this is not the Lord’s mind.  The Lord wants us to be used, yes; but what He is after is that we pour all we have, ourselves, to Him, and if that be all, that is enough.”    – Watchman Nee

Now, Watchman Nee lived in the early to mid 1900’s and that was a problem then.  How much more so (!) could it be a problem now?

Here are a few points that I take from it:

  1. Often we seek the gifts over the Giver.  I grew up Charismatic (of the balanced kind 🙂 ).  But often I saw Christianity as “What can I get from God?”  Usually it fell into the forms of prosperity (primarily of the financial kind), success, more spiritual gifts, more “power,” — more grandeur.  While I believe that God certainly does meet needs (look at the ministry of Jesus!!), the ultimate goal of God is to give you more of himself!  Everything else is penultimate.  John the Baptist said it best:  “I must decrease, He must increase.”
  2. The flip side is the Christian who thinks that he’s on a mission from God for whatever reason.  It is true that we have been commissioned by God to be ambassadors of His beautiful kingdom.  But many Christians feel like the have something to prove to God, and so they “stretch out” their measely rubber bands and burn out in 5 years.  Spiritual burnout is a huge problem today.  This can be a result of seeking to be God’s workman rather than allowing God to work in the believer.  Your only “obligation” to God is to seek Him and know Him.  That’s not really an obligation at all; however, just as a man pursues a lover, a level of desperation and commitment is needed.
  3. By pursuing God alone, the believer will necessarily be “used” by God.  It can’t not happen!  As you are filled with the “divine nature” your attitudes, desires, inclinations, longings, and even work will begin to be “conformed to the image of His son.”  Everything you do will begin to take on a divine quality.  But spiritual burnout is impossible, because you are drinking from an inexhaustible source:  The Living God.

For the love of God–seek God!  Be steadfast in this one thing.  Be unwavering in your commitment–not to work harder for Him, not to get more from Him–but be unwavering in your desire to know Him.

Okay…off my preacher soapbox. 🙂

Dwell in the presence of God.

One Comment leave one →
  1. Tracey Groover permalink
    March 23, 2009 9:17

    I’ve been asking God to help me have this kind of relationship that you talk about.


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