Thirty years ago the watchman was born again, encountering the out pour of the love of God, crashing in, like never before, experiencing the Bible promise in Romans 5:5! In a traditional evangelical church he later attended, one hymn stood out and left a deep imprint which came to the forefront suddenly this morning. So the family ‘church’ worshiped with hymns today. Powerful, anointing and ageless the ancient hymns still are. By the time they realized they should have been worshiping in Spirit songs, they decided to skip, as they already had the anointing and presence of the Lord so powerful in them. After listening to a sermon on the power of joy (which was so appropriate), some of the members continued and interceded as led by the Spirit of the Lord. It was altogether an awesome day before the Lord.
God is for family. Even your in-laws (relatives).This is the reality God sees. “Shout with the voice of a trumpet blast. Shout aloud! Don’t be timid.
Tell my people Israel[a] of their sins!
2 Yet they act so pious!
They come to the Temple every day
and seem delighted to learn all about me.
They act like a righteous nation
that would never abandon the laws of its God.
They ask me to take action on their behalf,
pretending they want to be near me.
3 ‘We have fasted before you!’ they say.
‘Why aren’t you impressed?
We have been very hard on ourselves,
and you don’t even notice it!’
“I will tell you why!” I respond.
“It’s because you are fasting to please yourselves.
Even while you fast,
you keep oppressing your workers.
4 What good is fasting
when you keep on fighting and quarreling?
This kind of fasting
will never get you anywhere with me.
5 You humble yourselves
by going through the motions of penance,
bowing your heads
like reeds bending in the wind.
You dress in burlap
and cover yourselves with ashes.
Is this what you call fasting?
Do you really think this will please the Lord?
6 “No, this is the kind of fasting I want:
Free those who are wrongly imprisoned;
lighten the burden of those who work for you.
Let the oppressed go free,
and remove the chains that bind people.
7 Share your food with the hungry,
and give shelter to the homeless.
Give clothes to those who need them, and do not hide from relatives who need your help.
8 “Then your salvation will come like the dawn,
and your wounds will quickly heal.
Your godliness will lead you forward,
and the glory of the Lord will protect you from behind.
9 Then when you call, the Lord will answer.
‘Yes, I am here,’ he will quickly reply. “Remove the heavy yoke of oppression. Stop pointing your finger and spreading vicious rumors! 10 Feed the hungry, and help those in trouble.
Then your light will shine out from the darkness,
and the darkness around you will be as bright as noon.
11 The Lord will guide you continually,
giving you water when you are dry
and restoring your strength.
You will be like a well-watered garden,
like an ever-flowing spring.
12 Some of you will rebuild the deserted ruins of your cities. Then you will be known as a rebuilder of walls and a restorer of homes.
13 “Keep the Sabbath day holy.
Don’t pursue your own interests on that day,
but enjoy the Sabbath
and speak of it with delight as the Lord’s holy day.
Honor the Sabbath in everything you do on that day,
and don’t follow your own desires or talk idly.
14 Then the Lord will be your delight. I will give you great honor and satisfy you with the inheritance I promised to your ancestor Jacob. I, the Lord, have spoken!”
58:1 Hebrew Jacob. See note on 14:1.
(Quoted from the Holy Bible Book of Isaiah Chapter 58 New Living Translation (NLT) on True and False Worship)
Question to ask today (especially in this season): Are you destroying home and the family’s protective walls or are you re-building? Are you a restorer of love and peace or are you an instigator of hatred and strifes?
How did the watchman encounter the recent awesome presence of God? By joining with others who fervently sought God by reading His words (marathon way) day and night (from Friday 8am to Saturday 4am).
Twelve believers turned up for the 20 hours marathon (non-stop) reading of the Bible New Testament. The ages ranged from 7 years old (who did not read but sat through with his parents) to over sixty. There was at least one representative from every decade: ranging from below 10, teens, the twenties, thirties, forties, fifties and sixties. It was not planned that way. The Spirit of the Lord called and someone passed on this message. The volunteers just turned up.
Eight believers gathered at 8am on Friday morning. They started reading the four gospels chapter by chapter (each reading three or two chapters by turn), book by book at 8.30am. Two had to leave for their work for the morning after reading of the first six chapters. They returned and joined the rest in the afternoon. Despite the small number, the group persisted until 4.30pm. They took eight hours to finish the four Gospels: Matthew, Mark, Luke and John. By 5pm they were ready to read the book of Acts onward. Another group of four joined them in the evening after work. The group continued without break.
During certain intervals individuals took short break to rest or have some food or drink. One brethren in his thirties fasted and sat through out the reading which took nearly 20 hours. He took nothing but water and did not even rest. The older and younger individuals had to take breaks. However, those who rested lied on the floor inside the same hall and could hear the word of God being read by others clearly.
By nearly 4am the group decided to stand up to read together the last four chapters of the last book, Revelation. It was very powerful in the cool morning air, with nothing but the word of God being read in unison by twelve (less the little boy who was sleeping by then) believers of Jesus Christ, all filled with the Holy Spirit. The room was flooded with heavenly light and everyone was flowing with the living water in each of them.
Then all knelt down and prayed and gave thanks to the Lord. From the prayers it was revealed that each individual had received different revelation from the Lord. For example, ‘Kingdom”, “Throne”, “Sword of the Spirit”, “Light” and the like.
The watchman suggested that they ended with the Lord’s Prayer and they did. In his spirit he was bursting with spiritual words and even songs. But he was just too tired to stay on. He walked home and continued to feel elated. God’s words had done a deep cleansing from within and he could feel the lifting of his soul and spirit. (Alas, he actually took one hour break in the afternoon from 5-6 pm to walk home to feed his two dogs! The dogs were happy and relieved.)
Nothing can compare with the reading of God’s word in one sitting of nearly twenty hours without break! He had never felt so refreshed and rejuvenated before! Later someone asked him about Abraham seeing his descendants as ‘stars’ in heaven. He recalled the verse from 2 Peter 1:19 “And so we have the prophetic word confirmed, which you do well to heed as a light that shines in a dark place, until the day dawns and the morning star rises in your hearts;” Indeed that was what happened over the last 20 hours of being led by the Holy Spirit in a marvellous journey in His words.