11. Christ in the Storm
And so I find myself at the present moment, talons gripping a tree limb, high above the ground below. One eye is on the coming storm, one eye is on the swirling heavens above. A fierce joy grips my heart, "This is my time; for this moment, I was created." At the right moment - which moment is now - I take the fierce winds of God's Spirit high into the heavens, riding above the storm.
11. Christ in the Storm
The disciples were crossing the sea; the storm raged; they were frightened out of their wits; and Jesus was asleep in the boat. They were obviously frustrated with Him when they woke Him. But Jesus spoke two words: to the storm He said, “Peace, be still,” but to the disciples he asked, “Why do you have so little faith?”
Jesus said during the last supper, “In this world you will have tribulation” – everything that can go wrong will go wrong, but be thrilled and excited about it, for I have defeated the world. (My paraphrase)
Moses, in Psalm 91, said of those in the secret place, “ten thousand shall fall at your right hand and it shall not come near you.” (Ten thousand people dropping dead all around you is no little thing.)
David said, “I will not fear, though the mountains be cast down and carried into the sea.”
Paul and Silas were beaten and bloody, thrown into a stone dungeon and chained with heavy shackles. During the night an earthquake hit, stones falling, men screaming in fear. Yet through all of it they sang praises, knowing that the Lord Jesus Christ was in them, they were in Him, and nothing else mattered.
One of the most critical elements of scientific mind control is to get everyone to “think positive,” and to stay away from those who speak “doom and gloom.”
As an amateur student of history, I understand that never in the history of this planet has there been such a pampered, spoiled, and conceited people as now exists on the North American continent. Arising out of that conceit comes an arrogance that is absolutely staggering. It is the sin of Sodom.
God never keeps His people from the storms. On the contrary, it is God who designs the storms specifically to showcase the triumph of Christ in our lives.
His strength is made perfect in our weakness. 2 Corinthians 10
Always carrying about in the body the dying of the Lord Jesus that the life of Jesus also may be made manifest in our mortal flesh. 2 Corinthians 4
I want to share from three more visions from Annie Schissler.
The Purpose of the Storm
He showed me the purpose of this world-shattering storm of evil that is coming: to bring forth and produce the government of God in and through His own reigning ones . . .
The Only Covering: Possessing Him
As I entered the presence of God, I saw the storm approaching - that great, angry, black cloud of evil that covers all – the time of great suffering and persecution that is already gathering its powers and forces together. I realized that before this storm breaks, His people must possess Him in a very intimate and personal way, a possession which can only be attained through a love relationship with Jesus. However, this love is far, far deeper than the glorious and beautiful love which flows freely in a fleeting moment of blessing; this is the state of love abiding within the heart as the one strong, constant, and unfluctuating foundation of the inner being.
I saw that such a relationship of possession formed a mighty covering power of God over His own ones, which was filled with grace and light and mighty strength . . . I was shown the enemy rushing against that covering in great fury and with much blustering; but they collided against that mighty covering of grace and light and were thrown back. They could do nothing at all against it. This covering was effective as long as the love relationship with Jesus was constantly nurtured and maintained . . .
Some – even of His own ones – who had not entered this place of possessing Him in intimacy, saw only the storm, and could not see any higher than that cloud of evil and darkness, for the storm had the power to cut off their vision of Him.
There were others, however, who learned to come into Him and to possess Him, to the extent that they knew that they were His and He was theirs. This intimate communion with Jesus, this state of constantly loving Him, this life lived with Him and in Him, was such a covering and protection that they had no fears, they were filled with security and peace. God opened their eyes to see Him high and triumphant, ruling over the storm, and they were not afraid. Because of this, the storm could not enter into them to possess them at all.
Possession Now or Later
While I was with Him in the wonder and glory of His invisible world, He showed me His own entering into the possession which He gives them. He explained that there were two distinct times of tremendous importance in which there could be an entering into one’s possession. Now, before the storm, or later, after the storm.
Those who entered their possession before the storm became His elect ones, with a far superior place and development, in them the perfect will of God was brought forth. Occupying a place very near to Him, they became the instruments of God in His workings . . .
Through several visions, Annie sees that there are two levels of experience with God in the coming storm: those who are above the storm, and those who are beneath. God is not angry with those who are beneath the storm, neither do those who are above the storm regard themselves as “superior.” Rather, God sends His love and power through those elect who live above the storm to minister strength and direction to those caught beneath the storm.
The difference between theses two levels of walking is how we see. Those who see God in themselves and themselves in God, those who see the storm as God’s perfect plan, a final demonstration of His perfect love, walk above the storm. Those who see themselves separate from God, with the requirement upon themselves to line up with His directives, will find themselves overwhelmed by the storm. In fact, though they want to cling to God in the midst of the storm, they will be strongly tempted to see the evil men and demonic forces that are the outworking of that storm as the “cause” of their trouble.
The central chapter that defines how we understand our covenant with God is Romans Chapter 8. All the rest of the New Covenant flows out of the foundations established in that chapter. However, the central chapter of the fulfillment of the New Covenant as it is taking place right now in the world, is Revelation Chapter 12. God speaks to me from every verse in that chapter: this is now.
Then being with child, she cried out in labor and in pain to give birth — And the dragon stood before the woman who was ready to give birth, to devour her Child as soon as it was born — And they overcame him.
Verse 12, however, is speaking of the same thing that I am sharing with you. Therefore rejoice, O heavens, and you who dwell in them! Woe to the inhabitants of the earth and the sea! For the devil has come down to you, having great wrath, because he knows that he has a short time.
God is giving us the opportunity to walk fully in the consciousness that Christ is our life; we are utterly in Him and He lives in every part of us. To walk in the full consciousness that Jesus is the Word made flesh again in our lives. He is living as the human me, and I am not separate from Him in any conceivable way.
I find my thinking changing so drastically. Outwardly, I am still a weak human in all that it means, but inwardly, I find my thinking being transformed. The central joy of God’s dealings with me, however, is the growing intimacy of a love relationship that I am finding between Jesus and me.
And let me say this: for me, the critical difference between decades of walking with Jesus “from afar,” and the present intimacy of union I am enjoying now is this – where I place myself. I see myself utterly in Him, especially my flesh and my sin, and I see Him living in every part of me. If I allow myself to behold sin instead of Jesus, that intimate union is cut off. But it is cut off only in my thinking, never in reality. What a shame, to live in that which is not!
And so, when God says, “Rejoice, O heavens, and you who dwell in them,” He is talking about our walking in the seeing of God in all things. And when God says, “Woe to the inhabitants of the earth,” He is talking about born again Christians who see themselves as separate from Jesus; He as their Savior, yes, but not their life. And when God says, “and the sea,” He is talking about those who are not born again, who cannot see God at all.
I want God to change completely the way I think, the way I see everything. I want to be, and am, seized in the fierceness of His love. I fill my thinking with the word God is speaking through me, and then confirmed through others. But, at the same time, I watch the storm. A great man of God I once knew said, “Keep the Bible open in one hand, and the newspaper open in the other.”
Over thirty years ago, when I went north into the wilderness of Canada with an overwhelming desire to know the living God, a brother shared a vision concerning me. He saw me as a “chicken” scurrying around in the barn yard, but then he saw the leg of the chicken turn into the foot of an eagle.
I was highly offended by this vision, a chicken indeed! The interesting thing is that a pamphlet was written by Peter Lord in that same year. I include a portion here, but you can obtain the book from Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/Turkeys-Eagles-P-Lord/dp/0940232 405
Excerpt from book Turkeys and Eagles by Peter Lord (SeedSowers, 1977)
We are all in danger of falling into the same trap that Adam and Eve fell into. They were tempted to become something they already were. The devil said, “If you eat. . . you will be like God.” They were already like God. Made in His image and in His likeness. They could not have been any more like God without being God. God made them as much like Him as He could.
If the evil one can keep us from knowing who and what we are in Christ Jesus – new creations, saints, the people and children of God – then he can tempt us to act, by making us want what we think we do not have. The Christian does not do in order to become. He does because he is what God has made him in Christ Jesus. (Preface)
— Note: This book is a parable of an eaglet named Hagan who fell out of his nest and was raised by a flock of turkeys. The following are the concluding passages from the book – a parallel of the Christian life. —
“Hagen, you are an eagle!” said the wise old owl. “An eagle my friend. You are a descendant of the grandest and highest of all birds. You belong high up there in the sky above all other creatures. Go now, Sir Eagle, and soar. Soar above us all.”
A chill of glory and revelation ran up and down Hagen’s mighty wings. Instinctively, he knew who he was. All he had ever needed was for someone to tell him! At that moment, he recalled that he had often dreamed of flying high in the sky, above the turkeys, above the buzzards, with some majestic species.
“Look at yourself. You are not a turkey. You have a noble heart of an eagle. It is the turkeys who have told you that you were a buzzard and that you have become a wonderful turkey. You are neither! You need not live in the wood any longer. Go Hagan! You belong in the sky!”
It is true that an eagle does not take long at all to learn to fly once he has been set free. And at that moment, our dear friend Hagan had very definitely been set free! Hagan opened his mighty wings to their fullest, and with one tremendous sweep, he set sail into the skies. Nor was he afraid as he lifted his head and screeched a most terrible cry of strength, joy, and freedom. It was a cry of triumph like nothing else ever heard upon this earth.
Hagan circled the wood for one last view of the unnatural habitat which so long had held him. Having taken one last look, Hagan raised his head and saw in the far distance, and high above him, something grand and beautiful. Every fiber in his being called out, “Yonder is my home!” Unleashing again that terrible cry of freedom, he lifted his head, arched his wings, caught the wind, and soared toward the mountain peaks!
Often an eagle will sit on a rock and wait for a gust of wind to come by and then simply spread out his wings, cast himself out into space and let the wind carry him up and away. The Holy Spirit is like the wind. Are you willing to jump off the miserable rock you are on and depend on the Holy Wind? Human reason cannot see you through this. Your Father and Jesus Christ have said you are righteous. Will you believe Them? The Christian life is not climbing uphill against great odds to someday become holy. When you became His child, God placed you in His holiness. Behold Him. You are going to rise above the little storms of life that drive turkeys into hiding, but drive eagles into the presence of God!
And so I find myself at the present moment, talons gripping a tree limb, high above the ground below. One eye is on the coming storm, one eye is on the swirling heavens above. A fierce joy grips my heart, “This is my time; for this moment, I was created.” At the right moment – which moment is now – I take the fierce winds of God’s Spirit high into the heavens, riding above the storm.
It is my mission and calling, and I have felt this for over thirty years, to be a nourisher and a sustainer of that woman, my dear fellow believers in Jesus, caught in something she has not prepared for and in no way understands, but for whom God holds an infinite and a jealous love.