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September 28, 2013

Wounding Waters, the Worldly Church: Introduction

September 28, 2013

We live in very exciting times, and I don't think that anyone doubts that the Lord is coming for His Bride very soon. What He's called us to share with you are the preparations that He's waiting for us to make, so that we will be 'without spot, wrinkle or blemish.'

On that note, He's given me a five-part teaching that He wanted me to share with you. It's a slightly different perspective, and it has to do with the things in the Church that are really killing the anointing. The things that we need to do to have a wedding garment that has no wrinkles, no spots, and no blemishes at all!

I'm going to give you an introduction to all this, and before I do, I want to share with you a dream that I had, when I first became a Christian. I was swimming in a lake, and all of a sudden, this black panther came up out of the water and grabbed me and pulled me down! What ensued after that was a life and death struggle to get free from this creature. This was a very, very powerful animal, and it had the ability to inundate me totally in the water and bring me down to the point where I could drown. I struggled so hard to get out of that place. It really was a life and death struggle! Sometimes, I would win, and I would be able to push the panther down and keep him under water. Other times, he would win, and he would keep me under water. This went on for a very long time.

When I woke up, I was just bathed in perspiration. By the time this dream ended, I had him under the water, and he was no longer visible, but that had happened so many times before; and he would come shooting up out of the water to grab me again! I had no assurance that he was truly dead.

I didn't know what this dream meant for a very long time, but then the Lord had mercy on me and told me that it was a warning dream. It has to do with my involvement with the world; with the distractions of the world, with beautiful things - with nature. I used to be a nature photographer, so with nature, and with things having to do with beauty. He especially quickened to me The Parable of Thorns, from Matthew 13.

Some of the seeds sown fell among the thorns, and the thorns came up and choked them out.

Later, Jesus explains this parable:

The seed falling among the thorns' refers to someone, who hears the Word, but the worries of this life, and the deceitfulness of wealth choke the Word, making it unfruitful.

'Martha, Martha...' (She laughs) This definitely relates to the 'Martha, Martha' side of me that - well - we're still working on.

A lot of what these teachings are going to be about are preoccupations. When I say preoccupations, I mean distractions - things that have bound up our attention, our minds, our resources, and our time. We are so bound up in these preoccupations that they are staining our wedding garment and getting in the way of a really pure relationship with Jesus. He wants to teach us, so that when He comes, we're really ready for Him.

One of the things that I'd like to mention is that our demons are far more subtle than we give them credit for. When we think of demons, we think of monsters lurking in the dark, ready to wrestle us to the ground. But they are more likely to linger in our Amazon's 'Wish List,' than demons, who are lurking around the corner ready to scare us.

These demons cause us to have desires that are inordinate - things that we don't need; things that are superfluous. A lot of these things take important attention off of God, and they focus it on how to covet, and how to acquire things that will increase our social standing, our appeal, our popularity, our acceptance, and our income.

I want to expose these socially acceptable behavior patterns for the worldly habits that they are, because these things that we get caught up in are accepted. We talk about them! We talk about our shopping sprees, we talk about our vacations, we talk about all kinds of things that have nothing to do with the Lord. And this is acceptable! This is something that is normal; something that we do. But life is not all about enjoying these things.

The Lord said, 'I have come to give you life and life more abundantly.' And later, He talks about that life. The Kingdom of God is not food or drink but righteousness, peace and joy. So, let's take a look at how we can increase those things in our lives, and let's look at some of the venues that Satan uses to trick us into being distracted by these things.

The first one is the love of money: things, entertainments, curiosities, travel, beauty, clothing, health, food, the pride of life. In essence, the 'good life.' Also, mismanagement of time and money on frivolous things, things that aren't important. And really, we know when we've blown it. I know when I've gone someplace, just for the fun of it. I would think, 'I need a little retail therapy.' Does that sound about right?

We know when we've blown it; when we've spent too much time someplace. Our conscience grieves. We can feel that the Holy Spirit is grieved. A lot of people - myself included - just chalk that feeling up to part of living. After all, we have to have a little pleasure and enjoy ourselves. Well, there is a time for that, but I think that in our culture, we're far too preoccupied with it.

The second one is social status: keeping appearances up; being accepted by the Church community. Keeping our relationships on a level that is acceptable to the status that we're seeking. This means not associating with people that are below our level on an intimate basis, like having them over for dinner, or having them over as friends. Doing things together, but keeping those associations on a higher level, according to our status. We want to match our social activities and networking with what we are trying to do in our lives, and the kinds of people that we want to be involved with.

It also has to do with approval, and getting involved in programs and activities that will increase our social status.

I'm going to go into each one of these areas in great depth, but for instance, with respect to this particular topic, there are so many different things that we can offer to do in the church, and so many different programs that we can get involved in. And it always feels good to be helping, but the Lord wants you at home, studying the Scriptures, or teaching your children, or taking care of your husband, or baking cookies. However, if you are pursuing with great enthusiasm the programs at the church, but you are neglecting what is going on at home, then you are not doing His will. This is something to look at. We get involved in these programs, because we know that they look good to the Church, and they're fun, and they'll be a social accomplishment, so to speak.

The third one is living the results, and a goal-oriented life. I'm guilty (smiling with embarrassment). Actually, I'm guilty of all of these, and that's the reason why I'm sharing them with you, because my life is so happy now and so rich, because the Lord has unchained me from my preoccupation with these amusements. That's the reason He's asked me to share this, because I'm very stubborn, and it took the Lord years, and years, and years, to set me free from these entanglements.

No soldier who serves goes out into the world and gets entangled in the world; he stays free of those entanglements. For those of us who are really serious about the Lord, and about His Kingdom, and being a part of bringing His Kingdom to Earth, we need to take a razor-edged look at exactly what are we doing in our lives with our time. Are we wasting our time? Are we spending it on frivolous things? On things that would go up in the fire? Things that are not God's will? We'll get into this in greater depth.

Now, living the goal-oriented life. I used to be a nature photographer, and I got very intense about my work. And since that time everything that I've done, I get very intense about. Before I do a painting, or record music, or sing, or anything like that, I really try to be sure that this is what the Lord wants me to be doing now; that I'm not neglecting my husband or my family, or the poor that come to our door for food.

So, I have had to learn to stop, and put down something, which I considered required a high level of technical concentration. I had to learn to stop - in mid-stream - get up, and go to the door, to make sure that a family has food for the night, or to take care of some little detail that's frustrating my husband, or if one of my children comes to the door. I had to learn to totally re-vamp my night, to show hospitality to them, whom I love very much.

Being goal-oriented is not a healthy thing. You see a lot of Hollywood movies these days, about people who are highly successful in business but tragically unsuccessful in their marriages. Those are goal-oriented people. People who are really serious about what they're doing to the exclusion of all other facets of their lives. The Lord has not called us to that. He's called us to love our brother as we love ourselves, and to love Him with all our hearts.

This is something that is sometimes laughed about. You hear, "Oh, this person's a compulsive, addictive worker" or something like that. We make fun, or we chide people about it, but it's really quite serious. Because it's one of the things that wrinkles the garment that the Lord is wanting us to make pure and white for His coming, by cooperating with His Holy Spirit.

The fourth one is fear of encountering the Lord. What I want to interject here is that conferences are good. Concerts are good, Bible studies are good. All of these things are good. But they are a ladder to help us to reach that beautiful place of intimacy with the Lord.

If we get caught up in constantly going to conferences, and constantly hearing the latest speaker who comes into town, we're just running, running, running, running, running! As I said, there is nothing wrong with this occasionally, if we know it's the Lord's will. But when we get so caught up in it, rushing from one conference to the next, thinking, 'Oh, is Joyce Meyers going to be speaking? It's only 30 miles away.' We have to ask ourselves, "Is that the Lord's will?' She's a wonderful teacher, but is that the Lord's will for me to be doing that?"

Here's the thing: we become so busy with these conferences and activities at church, that we really don't have the time to dedicate to the Lord in absolute purity; worship time, listening for His voice, studying the Scriptures. That intimacy where you hear His voice, where He speaks to you, where He holds you in His arms. Where He comforts you, He warns you of trials, He teaches you. That intimacy comes at a cost, and the cost has to do with not filling your life with busy work, and busy studies, and running here and there to be taught. Because if you have an intimate relationship with the Lord, He will teach you directly, from the Scriptures, from life lessons. From things that happened during the day, from nature. There are so many different ways that He communicates with us!

He will teach you, if you take the time to cultivate Him. "Those who seek me, find me."

So, getting too busy with conferences, Bible studies, and group meetings can be a real detriment. Because if you dedicate two or three hours of time just to the Lord every day, the intimacy between you just grows and grows. You become more sensitive to His voice. In the end, after you spent all that time to go to a conference, you might have learned, perhaps, one or two things that were important to you. But that information could have been infused in your heart and imparted to you, through that intimate time with the Lord, without all the trappings of having to get dressed, to travel, to be in crowds, and all of the other things that are involved with going to a conference.

This fear of encountering God also has to do with fear of who we are before the Lord. But we have nothing to be afraid of, because He loves us so tenderly. When He shows us our faults, it just melts my heart, because although it can be hard to deal with your faults, He is so tender and gentle about it. He prepares you with the anesthetic of Love so thoroughly, that when He brings to you the things that you are so afraid to sit and be quiet about, you begin to lose that fear, and you begin to become eager to hear what He has to say.

"Lord, show me the things that get in the way of our relationship."

That's going to be a really neat video and a neat teaching. I'm really looking forward to that, because I was one to run to every conference, every group meeting, and everything else that you can imagine, completely wearing myself out.

One day, my life changed rather drastically, and I started becoming really intimate with the Lord, and that's when I realized, "Wow! This has been here all the time, and I've been out there looking for it."

The fifth one involves worry; security for the future, fear of getting old, health issues, fear of poverty, the need for us to do things ourselves. The need to get involved in trying to do things that only God can do, especially as they relate to our family.

Some of us really long to help the children that aren't saved or that don't know the Lord intimately. We really long to help, but prayer is really where it's at, because God's arm is so long, and anything that you try to do just pushes them away.

So, worry and fear and insecurity are huge And again, the fruit of being in His presence and encountering Him in an intimate way leads you to a particularly special fruit: you lose your fear of the future, because you trust Him so completely! He is so trustworthy, and He proves Himself to you over and over and over again!

Are we willing to look through the eyes of the Holy Spirit at those spots, wrinkles, and blemishes? I thought about that for a while, and it came to me! Wrinkles take time and pressure to build up in fabric. They are deep, ingrained habit patterns. They look innocent enough on the outside, but they mar the regal, flowing garments of the Bride. Wrinkles mess up a dress! They break up the lines of the dress. Habitually sleeping in your wedding garment, or sitting when you should be standing and serving, is going to create a lot of wrinkles!

When the Lord said that He is coming for a Bride without spot, wrinkle or blemish, I think that it's worth taking

a look at what those things are.

So, now we've just talked about wrinkles. Spots occur with our interaction with the world. Have you ever been dressed really nicely - like when I lived in New York City - standing on a corner, and a cabbie goes flying by, through a mud puddle - and, whoosh! It's all over you? Suddenly, there are mud spots all over what you were wearing.

Well, in the old Southern adage, "If you play with dung long enough, you're bound to get some on you." That's what the world is like. If you play around in the world long enough, you begin to have the soil of that interaction on your soul, and it gets in the way of your purity of heart, because you're thinking about these things that have to do with the world instead of just thinking about the Lord and what's important to Him.

Blemishes are another story altogether. Blemishes are deep. A blemish in a piece of fabric would be threads missing from that fabric that would cause it to unravel. In our bodies, blemishes have to do with impurities in our blood. So, "without spot, wrinkle or blemish" - without interior pollution or structural weakness - things that are hidden but highly important are blemishes.

As you know, in a Temple sacrifice, the Jewish people never offered a blemished lamb. The offering had to be unblemished, in order for the Lord to accept it.

This is what He is telling us about our wedding dresses. They can't have spots, wrinkles or blemishes. And He is so into preparing us, and preparing this wedding garment for us, and purifying our hearts and minds, and making this garment "without spot, wrinkle or blemish"...but we have to be willing to look at what we might be doing to stain it.

I encourage you to stay tuned for the next five teachings, and I look forward to seeing you. Please write to me, leave some comments; I appreciate it. My name is Clare du Bois, and we have a web site called You can get music there, as well as teachings, and daily readings, and things like that.

Stay tuned...we'll see you later.