Three Men And Their Choices
I woke up at 1:30 in the morning after only 3 hours of sleep, July 20, 2008, while visiting my father and mother and 2 of my brothers in Jacksonville, Florida. Since I have for years now given my Lord permission to wake me up any time He wants to spend time with me, I often find myself getting only 3 to 5 hours sleep at night! But I would not want it any other way since who I am during the day is repeatedly being shaped by the times of intimacy I spend with Him in those early morning hours.
This particular morning I did what I try to do every morning – I just laid there in bed with my eyes closed during the dawning of the day when the still, small Voice of God rings crystal clear to the listening heart. As is my custom, I was "waiting on the Holy Spirit," telling Him all the reasons why I love Him so, and letting Him know I would love to hear from Him while I wait. Little did I know of the surprise He had for me that morning as a vision began to unfold within my mind – a tale of 3 men and their choices! I recount that story before you now, just the way it happened. To me it was like receiving a personalized parable from the Prince of Parables!
I envisioned a room before me, set up for Jesus to come and sit with His disciples. There was a big table in that large dining room (the room being perhaps 20 ft. by 30 ft. in dimension) with about 12 big chairs arranged around that table, and Jesus would soon be arriving to have fellowship and a meal with those He loved. There was one chair at the head of the table where the Guest of Honor, the Lord Himself, would be sitting when He entered.
Off to the side, at the other end of the room, more than 20 feet from where Jesus would be sitting, was a small table with 3 small children’s chairs, appearing to be set up for small children to sit or eat there.
Three disciples approached the front door, and each was told to pick a chair and sit down till Jesus came.
The first disciple opened the front door and walked inside the room. As an adult man, he noticed the big table that sat about 12 adults, and he noticed where Jesus would be sitting and the little table that had 3 children’s chairs, and remembering the parable in the Scriptures, he thought to himself, "I had better take the chair at the adult table that is the furthest from Jesus, or He may ask me to – He may ask me to exchange seats with someone who has been more faithful to Him than I!" So he did. He had taken pride in knowing how to humble himself and take the lowest seat!
Then, the second man entered the room, looked at where Jesus would be sitting and the layout of the chairs, and quoted to himself Jesus’ very own words from the gospels – "Except a man become as a little child, he cannot enter the Kingdom of Heaven!" So he took a seat in a children’s chair, content with himself that he could humble himself enough to sit in such a lowly and small chair, and at the furthest distance from Jesus in the room. He, too, was proud of his decision to humble himself and take the lowest seat!
Then the third man came into the room, a very young man, in fact, a young boy about 8 to 12 years of age. And he was very excited that soon he would be able to see Jesus, hear His Wisdom, and watch His Love in action! Just the thought of being near to Jesus was quite overwhelming to the little boy. He looked at the big table with big chairs and decided that was not for him, and he looked at the little table with the big man sitting on the little chair, and he thought that looked funny! When he noticed that there was no chair to the right of where Jesus would be seated at the head of the big table, he went to that spot and sat on the floor so that he could be sitting at the feet of the One he loved the most!
When Jesus walked into the room and sat down, He saw the young child sitting at His feet, and noticing the boy’s heart of passion for Him, Jesus put His Hand on the boy’s shoulder and asked him to stand up, climb into His lap, put his head on Jesus’ chest, and look into Jesus’ eyes (which the young boy gladly did!).
In the vision, when the child sat on Jesus’ lap, he suddenly turned into me at my current age of 60. I looked deep into Jesus’ blue eyes, and He looked deep into my soul, and I felt no sense of improper behavior or embarrassment to be so close. In fact, the nearness to Jesus was the very thing I needed to receive inner healing for the traumatic situations and fears that gripped my heart as a young boy, and even as a young man. As I sat on Jesus’ lap and looked into Jesus’ eyes, I felt my broken heart being healed of years of abuse!
The vision was over.
Somehow I knew in my vision that staying in His Presence and falling more and more in love with Him would be the main thing that was necessary to bring wholeness to my life. I had one major prayer for most of my growing up years; "O Lord, if only You could deliver me from all my fears, and teach me how to Love like You do, that is all I would want in life!" And now the precious Holy Spirit was showing me in a vision the answer to that prayer-just snuggle up close to Jesus with the faith of a little child and let Him set me free from the spiritual wounds of my past. As the Scriptures say, "Perfect Love casts out fear!"
When the vision had ended, I sensed that the 3 men to enter the room were each me at different stages of my life. First, there was the mechanical me that learned to take the lowest seat, lest I be asked to do so! Second, when I learned there was yet a lower seat, I found out how to humble myself as a little child and pursue His Kingdom of righteousness, peace, and joy that is in the Holy Spirit. I felt so proud to have learned these 2 lessons on humility!
Finally, I actually became like a child, a child passionately in love with Jesus, wanting only to sit at the feet of the One I love and learn from Him! I sensed that if I came to Him to be near Him, and if I would humble myself and sit at His feet, He would always be touched in His Heart and place me on His lap where I could be healed by the Love in His beautiful, blue eyes!
I am learning that finding the lowest seat of all never originates in the mind but rather in the heart, and true humility is a matter of the heart longing to sit at the feet of the Object of its desire, receiving from the very Presence of the God of Love!
I am also learning that every good and perfect gift comes from the Father Above, just as the original Aramaic Scriptures say in John 17:7, when Jesus said of His relationship with His Father, "Now I know that every thing whatsoever You gave to Me is from Your Presence!"
Thank You, Holy Spirit, Spirit of Holiness, for continuing to lead me into all Truth!