As we know all too well, God blesses and does way more in us than we could ever do in someone else’s life. Here’s a little taste of what the Lord is doing inside of ya boy, Joshua Christian Michael Johnson.
Something is being birthed inside of me. A mighty work is being completed in me. “It’s not what you think. It isn’t what it seems.” What I am carrying is something great – and it takes time. I’ve haven’t much to show for the intensity I feel inside me. I am so thankful and grateful God is doing this powerful stuff deep within me. But it’s like an upside down tsunami – the surface is a gentle roll, but down below is a storm of holy chaos, with towering waves rising and crashing in on themselves. An endless seascape. The violent churning of the waves rises above flood level and slosh out salty tears from my eyes. I’m so confused because this is all happening inside my vessel, when I thought it was supposed to be taking place on the outside.
“The vessel that He is forming you as is different than your thoughts.”
I’ve been trying to live outside of this, live apart from this spiritual birthing process. But God says the best way to nourish the promise is to live in the middle of all He is doing – unafraid and full of faith and joy. The only release is worship. By the power of the Holy Spirit, the Lord is reshaping this vessel. The waves are just the work of His hands. They form me with gentleness, but He is so far beyond my imagination, it is no surprise the grandeur of His slightest movement shakes me to the core. My breath is taken in an instant and I can’t speak. Exhaling thankfulness is a second language I’m learning. A kick from my insides, doubles me over, reminding me of the formation of the new birth. I upright myself to find I am more full than I was a second ago.
The frustration of lacking the definition to communicate my inner reality often makes my heart heavy with the weight of things I can’t change. It is impossibly difficult to be present with divided focus. A constant struggle of what I should give my attention. The balance of nurturing the life being created inside me and the already created life that can be seen. Complaints aside, this is what I’ve asked for. This is surrender. And, God, I desire so deeply and fully for every single one of Your waves. May I meet them head on, take them all straight in the chest. The promises and prophesies spoken over my life make me shudder at the thought of God’s glory, His presence like never before. Are my roots deep enough to stretch me as high as You want to take me?
Patience means long-suffering and I can assure you, it is not natural. It really is a gift, fruit from the Spirit – one that I’ve been chewing on for quite some time now. The quakes of anticipation have multiplied as my wonderful brothers and sisters have poured the best of themselves into me on this road trip. I am so blessed and forever changed by them. They have helped to reveal the shape that this spiritual baby inside of me is forming into. A few clues of the enormous magnitude that is to come. This is nothing short of miraculous, an act of God. It’s got to come out. Mostly, all I can do is hold open my hands and get wrecked by the giant revelation being freshly created through the grace of the King.
I’ve been promised an explosion. One that displaces ancient mountains and changes everything. Brace thyself. Already, I feel as though I may burst apart with one more touch of His hand. I can’t even fully think about it all at once or else become too overwhelmed. When I consider the growth and the change thus far, I take notice of the groaning movement coming from the inside – signs of life. Some sounds are beginning to escape, turning groans into roars. This is just a glimpse through the keyhole of a secret door awaiting the call to swing wide.
Meanwhile, I am being shown the power of joy and how it’s an endless energy that never runs out because it originates in the heart of God. Our free access to it sets the stage for an inescapable love to be laid afresh on us from the inside. It takes faith to have joy and it’s crucial if we are to carry our promise to full term, to full revelation. God’s timing never produces anything prematurely. He is always precise. And without the unquenchable smile of joy, we will grow sour and let our hearts revert to bitterness. That sounds disgusting to me and all who have tasted Living Water. We may not know what God is forming inside of us, but we do know Him, so in a funny way, we kinda sorta almost know what is possibly going on, perhaps. This is the way it is supposed to be. Our focus isn’t the birth or the gifts or the fruit, but our only concern is the intimate abidement in the Vine from whom the fullness of life flows.