|Guest Author: Patricia D. Brown — My youngest sister, Patricia D. Brown, sent me the following message back in 2009. I feel that what she has to say here is too valuable to keep to myself so I am passing this timeless message on to both family and friends. She makes many valuable remarks that we all would be wise to take notice of and hopefully use to reevaluate where we place our priorities in life. I wish to extend my humble thanks to her for sharing this message with me. You may contact her about this message at Patricia D. Brown.|
Key verse: Daniel 7:25
And he shall speak great words against the most High, and shall wear out the saints of the most High, and think to change times and laws: and they shall be given into his hand until a time and times and the dividing of time.
Today, we live in a time where everybody seems to be in a hurry for some reason or the other and just don’t seem to have enough time to do whatever it is they have planned to do. Oh, don’t misunderstand me. I believe that it is a good idea for one to have hopes, dreams and plans for their lives, for Proverbs 29:18 tells us that, “Where there is no vision, the people perish.” Even God Himself has a plan and will for the lives of His children. In Jeremiah 29:11 it reads, “For I know the thoughts that I think toward you, saith the LORD, thoughts of peace, and not of evil, to give you an expected end.” Our Heavenly Father only wants what is best for us. In fact, He knows what is best for us better than we do. That is one of the things that I love about Jesus. He has a long-range view of our destiny.
Sadly to say, a lot of church folk are short-sighted and at times naïve and narrow-minded. While I do believe that God wants His children to enjoy their lives while here on earth, we as Christians fail to realize that where we are in God now – or our level of spiritual maturity – is not the place God plans for us to be forever. He doesn’t want us to stay baby Christians forever. For example, He doesn’t want us to just know about Him; He wants us to come to KNOW Him in a personal and intimate way through prayer, the study of His Word and through fellowship with other saints. Some of us should even be at the stage in our walk with the Lord where we no longer go to church looking for a blessing, but rather we now go to church to BE a blessing to the body!!
I truly believe that God wants us to be busy in the church and to be found doing His work when He comes (Luke 19:13, Matthew 24:44). But unfortunately, some of the saints have gone and are going to the extreme. The enemy or the Devil has blinded the saints into thinking that we have to take on every job and be on every board in the church in order to be pleasing to God. In a careful study of Daniel 7:23-25, the prophet is speaking about end time prophecy when this fourth great beast God shows him in a vision will wear down the saints with persecution. He also brings out a specific time-table about how long this great beast will be persecuting or wearing out the saints, “until a time and times and the dividing of time” (See Daniel 7:25). “A time” is the span of one year; “Times” is a span of two years; and “The dividing of time” is half a year, making a total of 3 ½ years. Thank God it is only a span of 3 ½ years! If it were longer, I truly do not believe that a lot of the saints would be able to take it. Jesus said in Matthew 24:22; “And except those days should be shortened, there should no flesh be saved: but for the elect’s sake those days shall be shortened.”
See, Daniel was speaking about the times that are coming after the rapture of the church during the tribulation. But if we would take notice, Satan is wearing out the saints in the church today. That’s why the Word of God tells us to “Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil, as a roaring lion, walketh about, seeking whom he may devour” (1 Peter 5:8). The devil has blinded many of us into thinking that we have to be super, extra busy doing things: I’m on this board, I’m on that auxiliary, I’m on this choir, I’m on that choir, I’m a deacon, I’m an usher, I’m a trustee. As a matter of fact, I’m even the president and they just can’t make it or go on without me. WAKE UP CHURCH!! God is not calling us to be so busy. In fact, He has specific offices and places for each of us in the body (See 1 Corinthians 12). The saints have too many irons in the fire. We are so busy doing THINGS! God is not so interested in the deeds of my hands as He is in the condition of my heart. AMEN?!! If my heart isn’t right or if my motive is wrong, God won’t be pleased anyway.
The devil is slowly but surely wearing out the saints doing things and going places until the time for the more important things – prayer, Bible study, relationships, fellowship with other saints, and the like – is all used up. We may sing the song, “Lord, I’m Available to You”, but in all actuality, we are not. If someone needs a friend just to talk to or spend time with, we are too busy. If someone needs someone to pray with, we are too busy. We often tell them that we’ll pray for them later, and get so busy again until the prayer request goes completely off our minds. Or if someone just needs a listening ear, we are too busy. And even in some instances, some of us have the audacity to think or say that “If I am not going to receive any glory or recognition for myself or if I’m not going to get anything out of it, I don’t have time to be bothered anyway!!” The devil is wearing us out with WRONG THINKING.
I was talking to an older friend of mine and she was telling me that times have changed and that things and people are not the same today anyway. She said that when someone was sick or someone passed away in the neighborhood, folks had all kinds of time to spend. Friends and family would come by to make sure that everyone and everything was all right or even take time to pick up the phone and call. But today, we are so busy that we don’t have time to pick up the phone just to say, “Hi! I had you on my mind. Is everything all right?” Back in the “good ole days”, all folk really had was each other. They didn’t have fancy cars, fine homes, good paying jobs, fine clothes, cellular phones, DVD players, computers and whatever. All they had was each other and that seemed to be enough. The devil can even use God’s blessings against us, if we let him. It seems as though before God started blessing us with material things, we acted like we had good sense! That is why God doesn’t bless some of us the way that He desires to. We don’t know how to act when the blessing comes!! We have eaten and gotten full and have forgotten to say, “Thank you” (See Deuteronomy 8:10, 11).
We wonder sometimes why we are so tired. We wonder why we are sicker now than we used to be. Satan has worn us out. Again, I truly believe that the saints have too many irons in the fire. What we need to do is be still and let God place us where He would have us and give that our all. Our prayer should be, “Lord, what would YOU have me to do?” and “Lord, where would YOU have me to go?” I believe if the saints would do this, we won’t be sick and tired, frustrated and out of sorts all the time.