Recently in worship the Lord revealed an image to me. The image was of a person standing on a beach looking out to sea. There was a sense of longing on his face. The scene changed where I could now look out through his eyes at the developing image.
Before me was the sloping sand of a shoreline that extended down to the ocean’s edge. In the distant horizon I saw an approaching series of waves making their way toward the shore.
When I was a young man, I learned how to surf. I also learned how to read the ocean. The older surfers told me that waves move from the ocean to the shore in a series of waves called “sets”. Many times the largest wave in the set comes at the end of one of these series of waves.
As I looked across the beach toward the shore, I saw lines that had been drawn in the sand. These lines looked like marks made by a stick, something many of us do when we visit a beach. As I pondered the image, I realized the lines were judgments made because of disappointments, assumptions, fear and unbelief. These lines had captions like, “I won’t do that.” “That is not of God!” “This is as far as I go!”
With each approaching wave some of the lines were erased by the water and foam that climbed up the beach toward where I stood. I knew the waves represented the different moves of God’s Spirit that had taken place in the past. Each new wave that came onshore carried with it the power to erase these lines of judgment.
The Lord began to speak as I continued to look across the beach and out into the ocean.
I see a sorrow in your heart – a sorrow of what could have been. I gave you revival to carry. What I gave you was dropped and broken through human failure and fear. This was not My plan. Why do you think I do not have another wave to break into your midst? I am not asking you to pick up the broken pieces from the past and try to reassemble them and call it “new.” I always bring something new. What is coming is completely new and birthed in My presence.
I will erase your unbelief, if you place your belief in Me, not in what you have demanded of Me. You have no idea what this wave will look like because it was created in a place outside of human fear and failure. When I move, it will not always be familiar. In that place of unfamiliarity I ask for your trust. I am asking you to leave behind a human wondering that is marked with unbelief - wondering if and when I will move again. I am calling you to a place of wonder where you will be like a child unwrapping a gift. My joy will become your joy and wonder.
I will remove the pain of regret from among you. This regret has birthed a sorrow like a person who mourns a death. My joy is always before you. Only fear and disbelief would have you look and see death. Remove this blindness from your eyes and look up and out. See it! See what I have prepared. It is good and it is making its way toward you and it will break over your judgments if you run toward the shore of My presence an embrace the wave of My glory.
As I looked out onto the ocean I saw the last wave in the set. This wave was huge and I knew immediately it represented a powerful move of God that was approaching our shores. The lesser waves that erased the lines of judgment were an opportunity to get our hearts ready in preparation to receive what God was sending our way.
Like a child would run toward an incoming wave and jump into it with joy and laughter, so will those who have allowed the lines of judgment in their hearts to be erased by God’s presence.
Those who choose to continue to live trapped above the waterline, behind lines of judgment and disbelief, will not be able to run forward to embrace this new work of God. They will remain above the waterline immobilized in fear and judgment.
As this mighty wave of God’s glory falls into our midst it will reshape the shoreline of our culture and more importantly, the boundaries of the Church itself.