2018 Fasting Guide – Day Twenty-One
ALL IN – THE QUESTION REMAINS, ARE YOU ALL IN?
When God revealed what He wanted us to concentrate on in 2018, the words ALL IN were not words at all. It felt like a commandment and it sobered me to the core. I knew there was so much in those two words that it could never be covered. Not in 21 days, not in a year. Because when He said ALL IN, He didn’t leave out any part of my life, or yours.
So let me get really real this last day of our fast. It’s time to be tough on ourselves and see some “other scriptures” that are written in the same spirit, written words of God that aren’t as warm and fuzzy, yet just as vitally important. The Bible refers to us as the Bride of Christ. We are to make ourselves ready.
Matthew 25:1-2 NKJV
So the first thing we need to see is the two distinctions: Five are what? Wise! The other five? FOOLISH! Let’s see why:
Matthew 25:3-4 NKJV
Now they were all on the quest to see the Bridegroom. They all knew the Bridegroom (Jesus), and they all had lamps. So they had a vessel with them that could hold what they would need to keep burning for Him as they waited. The foolish virgins made no provision for what may come as they waited. They thought the Bridegroom would appear quickly, and they forgot about shining their lights consistently and continuously until He did.
The Church, the Bride, must not become so satisfied that they know Him and that someday He is coming for them, that they decide they are prepared enough by having a vessel that could hold oil for the moment. With the foolish virgins, you see no anticipation or planning to go further than that. They were happy to settle down and just be happy because they themselves knew the Bridegroom. There was no thought of how they would continue to burn if He was delayed. No thought of others that may need to know the fire that was to be burning in their hearts after Him. The wise virgins brought the needed oil with them as they waited. They were going to still have the ability to light the way for themselves and for others. But they too, got a little discouraged and tired in the wait.
I have heard that the Lord is coming since I was little. It is easy to become complacent in the anticipation. But it is not fit for a Bride who is making herself ready for her beloved Groom to become complacent.
Matthew 25:5 NKJV
These virgins, some with oil and some without it, all slumbered and slept. There were obviously different levels to their “being tired of waiting” and their response. The Body of Christ is often tired of hearing that He is coming and not seeing the end result. But I promise you, if He said He was coming, and He did promise us that, HE IS COMING! Maybe not in our timeframe but in the timeframe of God’s eternal plan, He is coming.
When it gets to midnight, every night, it means a new day is dawning. One minute after midnight my iPhone refers to the last 24 hours as “yesterday.” The minutes we have left in every day may seem so far away when that day began, but every minute counts and there soon was a cry that would be heard:
Matthew 25:6 NKJV
The time is sooner than we think. (Time is a strange thing. We think things are taking so long, but years become shorter and shorter, while every minute seems to remain the same - you know it’s true.)
Matthew 25:7 NKJV
They all heard the announcement, but only five were still carrying the oil that was needed for the fire to meet their Groom!
Matthew 25:8 NKJV
The Bible tells us that the last days before His return will be like the days of Noah. In the time of Noah they wouldn’t listen to the voice of righteousness, but they cried out to get in the boat, and it was too late. The boat was built by those who had obeyed through the process of the coming outpour. And in this case, the Bridegroom was coming for those that had thought enough about His coming that they kept honoring Him. They kept loving Him, and they kept His heart presented for others as they shined their light AND had enough to shine for Him at His call.
The foolish virgins wanted to live off of someone else’s oil. Running from conference to conference, or prayer line to prayer line, is not filling their own vessels with the oil needed to present themselves. The wise virgins were also wise enough to know that if they just gave out to everyone else all the time, and didn’t keep enough oil for them to continue to burn, then they would all miss the call of the Groom.
Matthew 25:9 NKJV
At the last minute when the five unfit virgins (the Bride) hear His voice, they may try to scramble to collect what they need. But through their own choices of neglect, it will be too late.
Matthew 25:10 NKJV
I can’t imagine what it would be like to finally hear His voice and be unable to answer His call.
Matthew 25:11 NKJV
Can you hear them? “Make an exception! Let us in, even though we stopped preparing to meet you. Let us in even though we stopped burning, though we stopped sharing the light!”
Matthew 25:12 NKJV
He didn’t know them anymore for there was no time spent in honor, in anticipation for Him. There was no oil to carry them into His arms or into His Kingdom. This is a warning for all of us. No one can forget that the main thing is the main thing. And that main thing is JESUS! If we become complacent in our longing for His presence, and get negligent in our sharing the oil that has been available to us all along, we could all be left behind.
Matthew 25:13 NKJV
Remember, you are either ALL IN or you not filled at all. There is not half empty or half full. There are only those that are sold out and those that aren’t. Could you answer His cry today? Are you waiting and watching for the Lord daily and living your life for His glory? Will you be able to present Him with a vessel of honor, and with first fruits, and those that have multiplied? Will He find you being involved in building His Kingdom on earth so you will be a part of His Kingdom in the end?
There are people, there are souls, and there are disciples who have been assigned to you. Yes, you! If the Bridegroom comes now, would you be happy with your presentation? Or if He comes at the end of your lifetime … would you be happy with your presentation? Or perhaps He comes in your children’s children’s lifetime. Would you be happy with their presentation?
Someone once said, “Live today like Jesus is coming tomorrow.” Perhaps we should live each day like Jesus is coming today, so tomorrow will not catch us without anything to offer to Him. They say we have now formed a “habit” after 21 days of consistent concentration, study, and worship in our lives.
Your vessel should have oil in it. Now is the time to make sure you will continue to seek Him on your own, to study on your own, to worship on your own and to give out to everyone God puts in your path. We can be ready, and stay ready to hear the great call. We are those who are making ourselves ready.
Daniel 12:3 NKJV
It has been an incredible journey joining my brothers and sisters in seeking You and surrendering to You with all that we are! This is our joy and our privilege! Now we come, asking for an anointing of fire to come upon us that will not go out until You come for us. Lord, we are asking for an anointing for this time and this day that will continue to burn for the future generations!
We don’t ever want to be the same, we want to not talk about the difference, but be the difference. We love You. We want more of You. And we want everyone to know the wonder of You and to be ready for You. We give our lives and our hearts to You and we ask for an action anointing along with Your guidance for a new impact.
Thank You for this opportunity. We pray for us to continue on and to be bold and to represent You well on this earth! Come before You come. We pledge we will be ready, and burning! Amen.
Thank you for joining me on this journey. I pray this has been a blessing for you and that it kick-starts 2018 and the rest of your days. I love you dearly!
But WHO do we love the MOST! JESUS!
Let’s continue … ALL IN!