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Watch 2022 online sermons » Beth Moore » Beth Moore - Vision Testing - Part 5

Beth Moore - Vision Testing - Part 5

Beth Moore - Vision Testing - Part 5

You know, I truly do believe that corporate worship is just a taste of what it will be like to be completely free. Anybody know what I'm talking about? When you really, really give way to it, and I believe maybe somebody is here this weekend, that this is totally foreign to you, but even you knew that during that time there was something so powerful, that was going on around you, because there's something about just getting lost in him that causes every other concern just for that little while to completely evaporate. And for just that little while, all is right in the world.

You know what I'm saying? Just to be in the throes of worship and to know that there is one and only one who is worthy of our utmost affections, our utmost focus, and our pure wholehearted pursuit, and that is Jesus. He did us such a favor by insisting that he be the only one who is praised, because let me tell you none of the rest of us can handle it. I hear somebody say amen. None of the rest of us can even handle it. I want to hear these five. I'm gonna start you off, and I want you to finish them for me.

Number one, we have... we have access to a great physician who restores vision.

Number two is what? We have an enemy who is also trying to doctor our eyes. Okay, this is all about how we're going to see this thing. God has got a way for us to see it that brings us joy, that builds up our faith, that even if we are in sorrow, it never takes our hope away. He keeps us between the ditches; and when we roll in it, anyway, he comes and gets us out. But the enemy is constantly wanting to sow discord, offenses, hatred, all manner of bitterness and unforgiveness toward one another. That's how he's getting us to see it, to read one another's motives as if we can, and then to base the future of our relationship on what we may very well have made up.

Is that of help to anybody? That we think we are so sure of what was going on in their heart and mind, and we cannot read another person's mind or heart. I remember, I'm gonna pause here. Don't let me forget that I'm coming back to number three with you in just a moment. But years and years and years ago, my husband called me from work. He had an assistant that helped us, somebody that we went to early on when we could see that we were both going to be disastrous with the checkbook, we went to someone, and we bowed to her. We said, "Listen, we'll do whatever you tell us to do". And she was the one that taught us early on that we had to pay off all of our bills every month. I mean, she just said, you know, "Spend what you want to, but you'll pay it off before the month's over".

So, I mean, this is the way, and we would have like a negative $15 at the end of the month. I mean it was a heck of a way to grow, but she said, "Are we doing this my way, or are we doing this your way"? And I mean this is what, this is what this was like. And so, Keith called me, and he said, "Elizabeth," he said, "Did you charge on our account a $2.000 clutch bag"? This was years, this was 25-30, I said, "What"? And he said, "Did you charge a $2.000 clutch bag"? Let me tell you something. You've never seen anybody act more guilty in your life, because I started thinking, "I must have. I must have. When did I do it, and how did I do it"? I said, "You know," I said, "I don't remember, but I may be having blocked memories. I may be having, I just, I don't think I did". But I talked myself into thinking somehow unbeknownst to my true self, I have charged a $2.000 clutch bag.

I could not even, we didn't have $2.000. We didn't have $200. Well, come to find out, with somebody with the same first name and last name, and they, at this store, they just knew them well enough to go, "Oh, you don't even have to stay inside. You don't have to run your card. We'll just charge". Well, they charged it to mine instead. But if somebody had been looking at me, I would've looked as guilty as sin. And we're taking all these visual cues off one another, which sometimes discomfort looks a whole lot like guilt. Sometimes having no idea how to respond looks a whole lot like hate. Seeing it how he wants us to see it instead of how the enemy is trying to doctor our eyes to see it.

Number three, our real eye doctor can get the focus... He can get the focus back in our vision. Anybody gonna leave this place this weekend and fight to have your focus back? Anybody? It's like, you know what? Yeah, yeah, because some of you are writers. That book is not gonna get written without your focus. It's not going to. That big project that God has called you to is not going to get done without your focus. We're the only ones that can demand our focus back.

Number four is this. The eye doctors can excise what? Foreign objects from our eyes. And we want those logs out of our eyes, because we can't see clearly with them.

And number five is this. Our eye doctors can help us to not only see, but to see where? That's what insight is, to be able to look by the power of God into a situation. And the way we can tell real live Holy Spirit discernment from fleshly criticism is that the result of Holy Spirit discernment is always to love more and more. You can take that one to the bank. I don't care who calls themselves gifted with discernment out there. If they get more and more hateful, and more and more hostile, and more and more condemning, they are in their flesh, and the counterfeit of their flesh, and they're not in the Spirit, because in the Spirit discernment will cause us to love more and more, according to that knowledge, instead of less and less. I want to say something. I want you to go ahead and write down six, and I want to say a word or two to some of you that may feel called to teach, or to speak, or to communicate on any kind of platform. Write this down. This is our final one.

Number six, one day our vision will be perfect, and until then it will be tested. One day our vision will be perfect, and until then it will be tested, such as is common to man. So, will we stay faithful when it doesn't seem like a lot is happening, when it seems like he brought us here, and then where is he? He's testing our faith. I often try to think about what if the enemy is placing a bet on me losing my faith through this situation? Then there's something in me that goes, "I don't want to give him that". I don't want him up there going, 'I know, listen, watch her, watch her. "You give it enough time and don't come through on that thing, you remove that hedge, I'm gonna tell you, you just watch her, you just watch her.'"

You ever think about that in terms of the book of Job? What if there's something going on out there that we cannot see and somebody evil is just betting on the failure of our faith? I'm gonna tell you, there's something he wants a whole lot more than he wants of your marriage, your marriage, your family, your job, your church. He wants your faith. He wants your faith, because without faith, it is impossible to please God. Without faith, then we're missing that intimacy of relationship, where our eyes can see so often into the unseen. Now, I want to say this to those of you who are calm to be up front or frighteningly you are craving it.

I want you to know something. There is no greater potential for darkness than in an earthly spotlight. I cannot say enough, and I can hear Christine over going, "Yep," because I want to promise you that the potential for darkness, when you're in a spotlight, is like through the roof. I cannot beg you enough not to crave it. Do not crave it. Let me tell you something. There is so much of this that is not fun. I'm gonna tell you, and you need to know it. Because when God calls us out here into these elements, and there is all manner of criticism, you will not be the one, you think you will 'cause you're gonna play it safe.

Listen, there's nobody God greatly uses that plays it safe. You try that if you want to. You try that if you want to. And please, please build tea parties around it 'cause that is about as deep as it's going to go. Because there is so much risk on getting out there where you are exposed to the elements, so much criticism, so much testing that goes on out there.

And let me tell you, when he puts us out there, I don't know any other way to put this, but he will entrust suffering to us because it is his job to keep us in need of him. It's his job, it's the only way we're going to be safe out here in front is if there is something constant that is putting us in great need of God, that if we can't get away, the very thing, I've told the Lord so many times, "Listen, when I see you face to face, I'm gonna say that the way you did this was such a great idea; but for now, I think you're gonna kill me in the midst of it". Anybody know what I'm talking about? Because there's just been like one thing after another, there's always something that it's just like heavy, and it seems so hard. But let me tell you, the fires of that spotlight will burn you down, if you do not stay attentive to Christ.

I want to say something that is asked to me all the time. In the midst of such a schedule, before I say this to you, I want to say something else, and that is that I'm not setting myself up as any example. Let me tell you, anything I have learned of value invariably has been learned the hard way, but I'm going to tell you, you learn some things by 62. You just learn some things. If you're paying the least bit of attention, you learn some things by 62. And I'm gonna tell you those trials, those difficulties will just burn the heck out of you, if you're not attentive to Christ in the midst of what he has called you to do, and people ask me all the time, I mean this is the most repetitive question I get. "How, in the midst of all you do, do you keep hold of your intimacy with Christ"? And it's the most mind-boggling question in the world. There is nothing that comes before that. There can't be. There cannot be.

Have you been called to some area of ministry? Do not talk to me about how busy you are and that you're really trying to work in your intimate relationship with God and that you've lost hold of it serving him. I cannot say to you what a grievous mistake that will be. Nothing, nothing comes before that. Nothing, nothing. You are Velcro to him. You are glued to him. I'm just, get your hind end up in the morning, and get into prayer, get into prayer. I talk to people all the time whose families are being ripped to shreds. And if you ask them about their prayer life, half the time they're not even praying. "What you talking about"?

Fight for your people, not fight with your people. Fight for your people in prayer. Your struggle is not with flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the cause of powers over this prison, darkness over, spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly places. Therefore take up the whole armor of God, that you may be able to stand in the evil day; and having done all, to stand firm. Turn with me to 1 Corinthians chapter 13, where we will end. Do not resent the Lord for the favor he is doing you of keeping you attentive to him. There's this Scripture that just drives me crazy. It's in Revelation. I bet you've heard it before, where he says, oh, man, I just find myself living in a lot of privilege, blind places. I've got me some cute clothes. And I can usually pay my bills.

"For you say, 'I'm rich: I have become wealthy and need nothing,' and you don't realize that you are wretched, pitiful, poor, blind, and naked". In the Sermon on the Mount, all those, "Blessed are the poor in spirit, those who mourn, those who are persecuted". And we go, "What on earth is Jesus saying"? And I think if we could put it in a nutshell, this would be the message of it. "Blessed are you when you need me, because you shall have me. You shall have me". Now, we think, blessed are we when we have all this stuff, and we feel secure in our bank accounts. When was the last time you had to have him or you would not make it? I dare say that was the highlight of your walk with him. Our privilege has robbed us out of so much, out of so much.

1 Corinthians 13:8 through 13. Maybe I'm gonna read it in a little bit different version than you might know of it. This is the CSB. "Love never ends. But as for prophecies, they will come to an end; as for tongues, they will cease; as for knowledge, it will come to an end. For we know in part, and we prophesy in part, but when the perfect comes, the partial will come to an end. When I was a child, I spoke like a child. I thought like a child. I reasoned like a child. When I became a man, when I became a woman, I put aside childish things. For now we see only a reflection as in a mirror, but then face to face. Now I know in part, but then I will know fully, as I am fully known. Now these three remain: faith, hope, and the greatest of these is love".

Often, when I'm having my prayer time in the morning, I sit at my kitchen island on a stool, and I do a lot of journaling. I don't take down every word of prayer, but I just, I make a record of it. I can go back. I can go back to about 35 or 40 years of journals that have just traced my whole walk with him, all the ups and downs, even over these last two years, all the times that my journal began with the word, "Help us". Help us. And he always did. He always has. But sometimes when I'm writing like this, and I'm praying like this, and I'm looking down at my Bible, I just, I pivot myself on my stool where I'm facing out toward my den, and I just remind myself, "No, he's right here. He's right here". And I can't see him, never seen him take any kind of form before my eyes, never heard him out loud, but I turn, and I talk to him just like right there, right there.

And I think so often, what will he look like? What will he look like? I'm gonna tell you some things did not come through for me the way I somehow romanticized that they would. Anybody else? And I don't know why. I came from a whacked-out family. Where I got in my head, I love my family, but we are whacked. But I just, this was how this was all gonna go. And other things, oh my goodness, yes, but in some areas I was just like, it's out of my grasp. But what I got instead was that I don't just think Jesus is there. I know that he is. I couldn't have made it. I couldn't have made it. And because some things did not really come through the way that I hoped, somehow it just all got funneled over to him, and it just kind of fixated on him.

And I can tell you that I have been loved by some marvelous people, and I love marvelous people. And my husband loves me, and every day of my life, my daughters tell me that they love me every day. But I want to tell you, before I leave you today, the romance of my life has been Jesus, the romance of my life. He is a greater reality than anything I've ever been able to touch with my hands or see with my human eyes. Taylor, I pray that for you. I pray that for you, that if the Lord should not restore physical sight to you in your lifetime, darling child, do you know that the first thing your eyes will see... What do you do with that? For now, we know in part, but then we shall know face to face.

Would you stand with me, please? "Then I saw a new heaven and a new earth, for the first heaven and the first earth had passed away, and the sea was no more. I also saw the holy city, the New Jerusalem coming down out of heaven from God, prepared like a bride adorned for her husband. Then I heard a loud voice from the throne. 'Look! God's dwelling is with humanity, and he will live with them, and they will be his people, and God himself will be with them and will be their God, and he will wipe away every tear from their yes, and death will be no more. Grief, crying, and pain will be no more, because the previous things have passed away.'"

We're told in the Scriptures that we will see his face, and his name will be on our foreheads. You remember when I was telling you about Keith? "Look, Elizabeth, lay your head right on my shoulder. Look down my arm and look right down where my finger is pointing, and you'll see it. That's God with his Son Christ". He says, "Since we have so great a cloud of witnesses, let us lay aside every sin and everything that entangles us, and let us run with endurance the race marked out for us, fixing our eyes on Jesus".

Look, look, look right there, look right down my arm, right past my finger, and one day, one day while you're running, your eyes will open, and you will see his face. Will you pray with me before we end? God, I pray that you would cause the scales to fall from our eyes. But as much as you would enable people like us to see, we only see part of the parts. Let us see the whole of the part that you would allow us to. You are everything to us, you are everything to us. Teach us how to worship you, in the glorious name of Jesus.
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