by Wade E Taylor
“Deep calls to deep. At the noise of Your waterspouts, all Your waves and Your billows are gone over me.” Psalm 42:7
There is an eternal desire within our Creator that ever seeks for satisfaction.
Within each of us is a created “deep” (spiritual capacity and ability) that is capable of responding to this need that is within our Lord.
“Behold, I stand at the door, and knock: if any man hear My voice, and open the door, I will come in to him, and will sup with him, and he with Me.” Revelation 3:20
If we will become quiet and listen, we will hear this “Deep” desire that is within the Lord, as He knocks on the door of our spirit, seeking a satisfaction that can be found in no other way than our hearing and responding to this “Deep that is calling to the deep within us.”
The “waterspout” tells us that the attention of the Lord is now toward us (all Your waves and billows are gone over me), as if everything that He desires is gathered together within the depths of our being, and we are lifted into a higher realm of divine activity with Him.
Once we have unconditionally placed the totality of our being in the Lord’s hands, He not only will take a singular interest in us (His approbation resting upon us), but He will convict us when we come short of His desire for us, or if we begin to stray, that He might draw us yet closer to Himself. This is a particularly important result of our spending quality time with Him.
“For whom the Lord loves He chastens, and scourges every son whom He receives.” Hebrews 12:6
It is of utmost importance for us to understand that this “convicting presence” will always lead us upward toward a spiritually perceptive and active relationship with Jesus. In contrast, condemnation is from the enemy and will always lead us away from the Lord, downward toward death. We cannot lose if we will respond and submit ourselves to His dealings.
There have been times when I felt this convicting disturbance and misread it. Finally, I became aware of what was happening, and I turned to the Lord, and there He was, the “Divine Disturber,” waiting for my response.
“For day and night Your hand was heavy upon me …I acknowledged my sin to You, and my iniquity have I not hidden. I said, I will confess my transgressions to the Lord; and You forgave the iniquity of my sin.” Psalm 32:4, 5
When David recognized the source of the convicting presence that he was experiencing and then repented, the Lord met him in a profound way. The ultimate goal of this convicting work of the Lord is to turn our hearts singularly toward Him, so he will be in control of the totality of our being, and of all that pertains to us.
“…All Your waves and Your billows are gone over me.” Psalm 42:7
Thus, the result of the chastening of the “Divine Disturber” is the blessing of “Divine Favor” manifestly resting upon our lives. This speaks of the Lord’s singular attention toward us, as though we were the only person in the universe. This is difficult to understand, but marvelous to experience.
“You are my hiding place; You shall preserve me from trouble; You shall compass me about with songs of deliverance. I will instruct you and teach you in the way which you shall go: I will guide you with My eye.” Psalm 32:7-8
This “open reward,” or divine activity in our behalf (His approbation and presence resting upon us) is happening as a result of our repentance and cooperation with His chastening hand upon us, which is turning us toward the “door” that will lead us into the place of His abiding presence.
“But you, when you pray, enter into your closet, and when you have shut your door, pray to your Father which is in secret; and your Father which sees in secret shall reward you openly.” Matthew 6:6
This experience of His “approbation” (divine favor) resting upon us, is available to each one of us, if we will turn aside to spend quality time with Him, “waiting upon Him.” In the passage above, the word “closet” is carefully chosen, for we all have closets in our homes that are usually full. This means that an effort is required on our part to make room, so we might be alone with the Lord. Also, a closet has no windows so we will not easily be distracted.
When a young man “falls in love,” the object of his love becomes singular. All other women take on a lesser role in his interest. He has a “single eye” toward one young lady. This level of relationship is further cultivated and developed as they come to personally know each other. Notice that the Lord has committed Himself to respond to the expression of our love toward Him.
“I love them that love Me; and those that seek Me early shall find Me… That I may cause those that love me to inherit substance; and I will fill their treasures.” Proverbs 8:17, 21
On the human level, our ability to love is limited and fickle. But no matter how many reasons we may have as to why Jesus might not be interested in us, if we will consistently express to Him our love for Him, He will respond and take the initiative in bringing about changes within us.
There are no exceptions to this experience of His approbation resting upon us; it simply requires of us a repentant heart and the continuing expression of our love for Him.
Although these roles of God as being a “disturber,” and as being One who can be cultivated to become our “personal friend” may seem to be opposites, they are parallels which are very closely related. There are many things or relationships within our life experience that could hinder this higher level of communion with our Lord, which must be either dealt with or removed by Him.
Concerning these, the Lord does not harshly deal with us. Rather, He corrects or chastens us only to the extent that is necessary to lift our attention from the earthly to the heavenly.
“Does the plowman plow all day to sow? Does he open and break the clods of his ground? When he has made plain the face thereof, does he not cast abroad the fitches, and scatter the cumin, and cast in the principal wheat and the appointed barley and the rye in their place?” Isaiah 28:24-25
The plowman only does that which is necessary to prepare the soil to receive the seed, so the harvest might be abundant. So also, the Lord’s interest is in the quality of our relationship with Him. Therefore, His chastening is limited to this purpose, and His corrective action continues only until the desired response is obtained.
There are those whom the Lord would like to chasten, but He is unable to do so because they are unwilling to unconditionally place themselves in His hand, in order to allow His correction to be fully accomplished.
During the time when I was a first year student in Bible School, I became so discouraged that I decided to leave school. I felt that the Lord had little interest in me, and that He had something special for everyone, but me.
There was a group of married students who met once a week for a time of fellowship and prayer, and I came for what I felt was the last time. They were excited, sharing all that the Lord was doing in their lives. I sat there feeling sorry for myself, consoling myself with the fact that I was quitting the next day. Then, I noticed an aquarium and began to observe the fish contentedly moving about within their environment. As I continued to watch, an intense presence of the Lord settled upon me, and suddenly I felt as if I were one of these fish, profoundly enveloped within the presence of the Lord.
As I sat there, immersed in His presence, it felt as if His approbation, or favor was singularly upon me. I had placed myself in the corner of the room withdrawn from the others, so I could better feel sorry for myself. But now I was experiencing an unusual presence of the Lord, and it seemed that no one else was aware of this.
Instead of being preoccupied with quitting, I was now judging them for their lack of spiritual sensitivity, and the fact that they were not meeting the Lord as I was. Suddenly, one of these students left the table and handed me a book that was opened to a particular page.
It related a vision of three people standing before the Lord. He came to the first and made a big fuss over this person. He nodded at the second, and quickly walked by the third. A bystander said, “I understand this. The Lord is very interested in the first person, slightly interested in the second, and not at all interested in the third.”
To this the Lord replied, “You have it backwards. The first is weak and needs much attention. The second needs only to be reminded of My love from time to time, but the third is a trusted servant who knows Me and one whom I can implicitly trust.”
I then felt His chastening presence and realized that I was the one who was weak, needing all the attention that I was receiving, and the others were as the third. I had made a wrong judgment. I deeply repented and recommitted myself to finish school.
Within each of us, there are different situations and circumstances that the Lord uses to disturb or provoke us, that our self-centeredness and our self-righteous attitudes might be dealt with. Our part is to give the “Divine Disturber” permission to do so, and then to cooperate with Him as He does. Those things that are buried within us cannot be dealt with until they are first exposed.
Chapter six of Isaiah records the experience of Isaiah when he turned his interest away from the throne of a human king, and lifted his eyes to the eternal throne of the King of all kings. This resulted in his life and ministry being transformed. For Isaiah to experience this higher identity with the Lord, he had to be led into a time of darkness (in the year that King Uzziah died) in order to be released from all that he had previously relied upon.
Uzziah had been a good King and showed favor to Isaiah, but the Lord was seeking to bring Isaiah to a higher throne. Many of us are satisfied with the good, when the Lord would have us seek the best. Therefore, as being the “Divine Disturber,” the Lord will “cause” a situation, as He did with Isaiah, to call our attention to the fact that we have a need.
If we have fully committed ourselves to the Lord, there are no accidents. Now, the totality of our being is in His hands, and He is actively at work in our behalf. Thus, above the Throne (the place where we are seated with Jesus) were Seraphim, each having six wings. These three sets of wings speak of “divine activity” in our behalf. With the first set of wings (the Word and the Spirit in balance), they covered their head (unconditional submission to His headship); with the second set, they covered their feet (walking where He would have us to walk).
To rightly function in this relationship, our head must be covered that His head might be in control. Our feet must be covered so we can walk only as He directs. Now, we are ready to function in the heavenly realm. With the third set of wings, we are to “fly” at His command (lifted into the realms of the Spirit). Thus, in Isaiah 40:31, we are to “mount up with wings as eagles.” This speaks of divine activity in every aspect of our being.
“And one cried to another, and said, Holy, holy, holy, is the Lord of hosts: the whole earth is full of His glory.” Isaiah 6:3
The Lord not only receives our worship, He works through our worship.
“And the posts of the door moved at the voice of him that cried, and the house was filled with smoke.” Isaiah 6:4
This “smoke” is His revealed glory – His approbation resting singularly upon us. The smoke is also like a mirror, in the reflection of which we see ourselves. It is only in His presence that we are able to see ourselves as we are, and become capable of a deep inner repentance.
“Then said I, Woe is me! for I am undone; because I am a man of unclean lips, and I dwell in the midst of a people of unclean lips: for my eyes have seen the King, the Lord of hosts.” Isaiah 6:5
Although Isaiah had been ministering for some time, now in the reflection of the glory of the heavenly Throne, he saw the deeper level of his need, and he repented.
Sin is an action – a coming short, but iniquity is the “principle” that underlies the action. In the Sermon on the Mount, Jesus went beyond the “act” to the “intent” behind the act. Our sin can be forgiven, but it takes an intervention with “live coals” from the altar to deal with the sin “principle” that is resident within us, which provokes and allows the sin “action.”
“I indeed baptize you with water to repentance: but He that comes after me is mightier than I, whose shoes I am not worthy to bear: He shall baptize you with the Holy Ghost, and with fire: Whose fan is in His hand, and He will thoroughly purge His floor, and gather His wheat into the garner; but He will burn up the chaff with unquenchable fire.” Matthew 3:11-12
At this present time, the Lord is moving upon those whose sin, along with the underlying iniquity, has been purged that He might have “overcomers” whom He can fully trust for His end-time purposes.
“Then flew one of the seraphim to me, having a live coal in his hand, which he had taken with the tongs from off the altar: And he laid it upon my mouth, and said, Lo, this has touched your lips; and your iniquity is taken away and your sin purged.” Isaiah 6:6-7
The Lord will yet have a people from whom He has “burned” out the very root of iniquity. The “Divine Disturber” is about to move in a visitation of “fire” in which all the dross that is yet within us will be removed. We will be refined to the extent that the image of Jesus will be seen in the reflection of the “gold” that we have become (not possess).
The Lord is beginning to get our attention. He is a “Disturber” who is seeking something higher. Pontius Pilot, looking upon Jesus said, “I find no fault in Him.”
So also in our day, when we are judged, may that same report again be spoken of us.