Receiving the Spontaneous Guidance of the Holy Spirit, vs. Structure

This was written 2-1-01

Receiving the Spontaneous Guidance of the Holy Spirit, vs. Structure. Part 1

To the Elders and Deacons,

The things I was blessed/changed most by at church these past Sundays were not planned.

Three Sundays ago it was the song "How Did You Feel When You Came Out of the Wilderness", and the testimonies on Hospitality. I thought about that song later that week, and remembered that I was happy, and really loved the Lord and others when I came out of the Wilderness. I also rejoiced about hospitality, how fun it is, and all the confirming word on Sunday.

Two Sundays ago, I was blessed most by Preacher Jones message, all the testimonies on knowing and loving God, and the word that Preacher Jones said after his message during testimony time. I was very changed by this and became closer to the Lord than I have been in a long time. The Lord even gave me a song. And I am convinced that that would not have happened had there not been an extended time of testifying and confirming the Word.

Last Sunday, I was blessed most by all the singing, and playing in the orchestra, and by singing "I Want to See How Much I've Been Forgiven".

When we first started coming to the church I was surprised and blessed very much by several things. There was not a planned order of service on Sunday. Some times we would sing a lot of songs, sometimes only a few. Sometimes they were all on the overhead. Different people led music. Sometimes pastor read a story in church. Different people preached. Sometimes nobody preached. Sometimes the testimonies went all morning. Sometimes we had church outside. And these things were not planned beforehand, but were the Spirit leading, and if they had been planned beforehand the Spirit would not have been able to lead. I am very thankful that Pastor Desota is open to the Spirit leading.

This requires a good Spirit led leader to keep everyone focused. It is not that he needs to do these things that I have mentioned, necessarily, but that he needs to be Spirit lead to do whatever the Spirit leads. And not disregard Him if He thinks "I have never done that before", or "what will they think, doing this", or "That is weird", or "stand on the piano, in bare feet, in church?". Structure is the best word I can think of for describing these kinds of mental restrictions/traditions of men.

In the Bible I don't see Church as being formal, or structured. Jesus had a lot of trouble with the Pharisees on this matter. God is endlessly creative, different means each time.

Matthew 6:11 Give us this day our daily bread. (Not weakly or yearly.)

2Chorinthians 6:14 And said, O LORD God of Israel, there is no God like thee in the heaven, nor in the earth; which keepest covenant, and shewest mercy unto thy servants, that walk before thee with all their hearts: Each step we take should be directed by the Lord, He doesn't tell us before we need to know. It's the same thing as with the manna in the wilderness.

Love, Barak Bendixen

PS This was written before camp.

This was written 2-24-02

Receiving the Spontaneous Guidance of the Holy Spirit, vs. Structure. Part 2

To the Elders and Deacons,

We should not have a structured plan to fall back on in case the Spirit doesn't lead. We should seek Him for leading until we get it.

Proverbs 17:13 Whoso rewardeth evil for good, evil shall not depart from his house.

When there is something good and holy that God has told someone (or our self) to do, we should not call it evil because we are not used to it.

Ezekiel 14:1 Then came certain of the elders of Israel unto me, and sat before me.
2 And the word of the LORD came unto me, saying,
3 Son of man, these men have set up their idols in their heart, and put the stumblingblock of their iniquity before their face: should I be enquired of at all by them?
4 Therefore speak unto them, and say unto them, Thus saith the Lord GOD; Every man of the house of Israel that setteth up his idols in his heart, and putteth the stumblingblock of his iniquity before his face, and cometh to the prophet; I the LORD will answer him that cometh according to the multitude of his idols;
5 That I may take the house of Israel in their own heart, because they are all estranged from me through their idols.
6 Therefore say unto the house of Israel, Thus saith the Lord GOD; Repent, and turn yourselves from your idols; and turn away your faces from all your abominations.
7 For every one of the house of Israel, or of the stranger that sojourneth in Israel, which separateth himself from me, and setteth up his idols in his heart, and putteth the stumblingblock of his iniquity before his face, and cometh to a prophet to enquire of him concerning me; I the LORD will answer him by myself:
8 And I will set my face against that man, and will make him a sign and a proverb, and I will cut him off from the midst of my people; and ye shall know that I am the LORD.
9 And if the prophet be deceived when he hath spoken a thing, I the LORD have deceived that prophet, and I will stretch out my hand upon him, and will destroy him from the midst of my people Israel.
10 And they shall bear the punishment of their iniquity: the punishment of the prophet shall be even as the punishment of him that seeketh unto him;
11 That the house of Israel may go no more astray from me, neither be polluted any more with all their transgressions; but that they may be my people, and I may be their God, saith the Lord GOD.

These guys were thinking they were seeking the Lord when they came to the prophet, but God knew better. And I fear that some of our church services have been like this. They were just trying to prove there own traditions. That's what the stumbling block of their iniquity is, their own traditions. We should not have a structured plan (traditions) to fall back on in case the Spirit doesn't lead, we should cry out for help.

Love, Barak Bendixen

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