Awakened at 4:04 this morning, I heard the Spirit whisper to me, "Because thou hast kept the word of My patience, I also will keep thee from the hour of temptation which shall come upon the whole world to try them that dwell upon the earth." I lay in bed for a few minutes, pondering that phrase, "word of my patience." I wondered what it really meant. How do we keep the word of His patience?
I decided to get up and see what the Spirit would further reveal to me about this. Whatever it is that I must do to be kept from the great tests and trials coming upon the earth, I WANT TO KNOW HOW TO DO IT! I knew I had heard a passage from King James Version, Revelation 3:10. So I looked it up also in my NIV bible and my Complete Jewish Study Bible. The NIV phrases it "...Since you have kept My command to endure patiently," and the Complete Jewish renders it, "Because you did obey My message about persevering."
I let the words go deep into my innermost heart, that I might understand the calling God is giving to each of us as the Day of His Coming gets closer and closer. And then I heard the Spirit speak again:
"Trust Me. Believe in Me. Do not doubt. Do not quit. Do not give up hope. See Me in the storm. See Me in the whirlwind. See Me in fire and snow and hail. Did you see Me in the line of people with hands joined in prayer in the midst of total destruction in Alabama? I interrupted complacency and roared into their lives until they came together to seek Me and find Me.
"Come, " they say, "let us return to the LORD. He has torn us to pieces but He will heal us; He has injured us but He will bind up our wounds. After two days He will revive us; on the THIRD DAY He will restore us so that we may live in His Presence." (Hosea 6)
"To him who OVERCOMES I will give the right to eat of the Tree of Life (everlasting life in Yeshua) in the [restored] Garden of Eden. " Rev. 2:7
It all began to make sense, this powerful message the Lord was giving me in the pre-dawn hours. To overcome in tribulation and catastrophe, one must wait patiently for the Lord, endure through all that comes, trusting that He has purpose in it, and persevere, without losing hope or giving up.
I am reading a very powerful new book by my friend Joel Richardson, co-authored by Nathan Graves. The title is The Mystery of Catastrophe and I have decided it is probably the most important book we should all be reading in this time to understand why God allows these disasters and how He is working in the midst of them. Regarding the ultimate catastrophe of Noah's flood, Nathan writes, "God destroyed that He might save. God brought calamity to his beloved world so that one day it might see the fulfillment of His divine plan to save it. God saved Noah and his family to preserve the line of the coming Redeemer. We are part of this unfolding mystery of God to save the world and to fill it with His glory. Sometimes the very ones who endure the most hardship and severe testing are the ones most near and dear to the heart of God. It is because they are the faithful ones who can be entrusted with suffering, which in turn brings about a greater deliverance."
The very ones who endure...who persevere...who keep the word of His patience!
The picture of the long chain of neighbors on their street in the totally destroyed town of Beauregard, Alabama, hands clasped and heads bowed, was seared on my heart. Their response to catastrophe was surrendered prayer and the will to persevere. The Lord has torn them to pieces and the Lord will heal them. Blessed be the Name of the LORD!
Kelly Ferrari Mills