Update from Wendy
Thirteen years ago, I jumped into the depths of God with both feet and no life preserver. It was only after it seemed that I was at the bottom of the deep end that I realized I had never had any swimming lessons. But God was faithful.
Prior to that, God met me in the place of humility. I was bowed before Him, vowing with all earnest sincerity that, "From this day forward, all I want to do is obey Your voice." I knew His voice and I knew that I had not always heeded it. But now, I was ready to do whatever God asked of me.
I had no idea what I was signing up for.
Before I knew it, God moved me to a new city and reminded me of His calling upon my life. He had previously revealed it to me but it hadn't made any sense before. I was supposed to write books and speak all over the world. For the first time, I realized that this was for Him and His Kingdom.
But me? How could this be? Ministry? Huh?
The next thing I knew, God was telling me to give away everything I owned and live by faith without asking anyone for anything I need but just seeking first God's Kingdom and His rightousness (Matthew 6:33,) meditating on His Word day and night (Joshua 1:8,) and delighting myself in Him (Psalm 37:4.)
If you've ever been in a position where you really really need God to come through for you... and then He does (because He's awesome)... then you have a pretty good idea of what the last thirteen years of my life have been like. God is faithful. Jesus is enough. He never fails.
But at first, I hated living this way. I found it dreadfully humiliating and shameful. I didn't understand why God was doing this to me. It wasn't like God sent me to the mission field, or to seminary, or into any other type of "box" that people could get their minds wrapped around because they had seen it before and knew what it was. Instead, it seemed I was a freak and a fanatic who had lost my mind and common sense. People were unkind, uncaring, inconsiderate, accusatory, and cruel. So, with self-righteous self-pity, like Job, I cursed the day I was born. I asked God to stop beating me up and just be done with me if it was going to go on like this.
You see, living this way is full of joy unspeakable and full of glory (1 Peter 1:8) but it is also full of hardships, failures, misunderstandings, persecutions, and all manner of trials which God uses to transform us, mature us, and make us like Jesus. He is the Potter, we are the clay.
In the early days of obedience with much resistance, I asked God many times about why I couldn't go get a job to provide for myself. I tried to compromise by saying I'd only work a part-time job so I could obey God with the rest of my time while maintaining the dignity of self-sufficiency and not suffering the humiliation of being in need all the time. I begged God to let me work at the Walmart McDonald's (which would be a rather strange place for a former New York City investment banker to work.)
But God told me, "I am asking you to live this way willingly now because the days are coming when people will have to live this way against their will." What God wanted from me was willing obedience, willing endurance through trials, and willing faithfulness to what He was asking me to do - nothing more, nothing less - no matter what anyone else thought about it and no matter what it cost me. Willingness to wait upon God for His perfect plan and for Him to fulfill His purposes in His way and in His timing. I finally gave up resisting.
For years, it seemed outwardly like nothing was happening at all. The worse it got, the more people rejected and distanced themselves from me. But God was working in the waiting, the seeking, the meditating, and the delighting in Him. He was also working in the pain, the rejection, and the crucifying of my flesh. God never left me and never failed me. The Lord is righteous in all His ways and kind in all His deeds. (Psalm 145:17.)
In the meantime, God taught me His Word. He began to prophesy through me before I even knew what a prophetic word or a prophet was. He introduced me to His power for deliverance and healing not because I was seeking power or manifestations but because I was seeking Him and that's a part of who He is and what He does.
To make a long story short, to this day, I still live by faith in total dependence on God alone. Still seeking His Kingdom, still meditating on His Word, and still delighting in Him. God has been very faithful to me. He has allowed me to co-labor with Him to write books which are all about Him to train His people in His word and ways. He wants His people to know Him. He has sent me (by faith) all over the world to proclaim Jesus, teach His Word, and demonstrate the life of obedience to His voice. He has allowed me to be part of His wonderful healings and miraculous power, from blind eyes being opened, deaf ears being re-created, limbs being grown out, supernatural provision of rain in a time of severe drought when rain season was still months away, accurate prophetic words to people I have never met, and so much more. God is faithful! Jesus is enough!
And now, it is a new day. Before, it was as if God asked me to jump into the deep end of the swimming pool. Now, it seems that God is asking me to jump into the deep end of the ocean.
The days are upon us which God told me about years ago. Every one of God's children needs to learn to live by faith and obedience to His voice. Every one of God's children needs to know and live His word and His ways. Jesus is the only one worthy of our submission and devotion. He is the only One we will give account to when all is said and done. He is the only One who sets us free from every other captor and invites us to be willingly and completely surrendered to Him.
I am still willing because He is still worthy.
Here is the conclusion I have come to:
It is a privilege to need God.
It is a privilege to mourn over wickedness and the ways of the world.
It is a privilege to submit to God and obey Him.
It is a privilege to long for justice and the ultimate day of judgment.
It is a privilege to show mercy to those who don't deserve it.
It is a privilege to be purified in heart by God's process in our lives.
It is a privilege to deny ourselves and lay down our lives so that others may come to know Jesus and have peace with God.
It is a privilege to be misunderstood, mocked, ridiculed, and rejected for Jesus.
For those of us with these privileges, to us belongs the Kingdom of Heaven. Jesus is King!