WHERE HAS THE GLORY GONE?

Since the closing of the year of 2003, the Lord instructed me to be silent and to observe closely events transpiring in the congregation I attend. The Lord laid it on my heart that these events I would be observing would also be events transpiring to many other congregations world wide.

For weeks and months, I came quietly to church; sat in the very back, and just observed. Many things I observed disturbed and angered me. Other things I observed revived a spirit of hope within me.

It seemed that as I observed situations in the congregation I attend, I somehow also was sensing the spirits behind these events. There were times I felt paralyzing spirits of lethargy, indifference, apathy, oppression and depression. There were spirits of anger, disunity, discord, gossip and slander.

Many times, observing these things and feeling the weight of these spirits behind the events weakened me physically and I battled numerous illnesses.

Attendance at the congregation I attend has dropped by more than half. Almost no young people or young couples remain. Those who have left this congregation, for the most part, have not backslid. They still love the Lord and want to serve Him. They have just stopped coming to church.

I ask myself often, "Where has the glory gone?"

A few weeks ago, the Lord broke His silence and began to speak and reveal and show some things to me about myself and the congregation I attend. The Lord said that these things also apply to others of His children and other congregations.

It is with a spirit of weakness and a heart almost of fear (feeling completely unable and incapable of somehow putting into words), that I now attempt to share these things with others.

 

The Lamp Of God Went Out

In a vision, the Lord and I were standing quietly next to each other. The Lord showed me a church building set upon a large hill. I saw a bright light shining out from this church building. Then, the light began to glow fainter and fainter. Until finally, the light went out.

1 Samuel 3:3-4 ~~ "{3} And ere the lamp of God went out in the temple of the Lord, where the ark of God was, and Samuel was laid down to sleep  {4} Then the Lord called Samuel: and he answered, Here am I."

 

The Glory Is Departed

In the vision, I then saw an opaque cloud shoot out through the top of this church building. When this happened, I saw people leaving the building.

1 Samuel 4:21-22 ~~ "{21} And she named the child Ichabod, saying, The glory is departed from Israel: because the ark of God was taken, and because of her father-in-law and her husband. {22} And she said, The glory is departed from Israel: for the ark of God is taken."

Spirit Of A Whore

A beautiful woman then approached the darkened church building and entered into it. From the way the woman was dressed, she appeared to be a prostitute.

I then found myself with the Lord within the church building. I noticed that there were a few people remaining in the building.

The prostitute was going from person to person, whispering in their ears. Some of the people appeared to listen to her words. Other people put their hands over their ears and ran from the prostitute.

"Who is this prostitute?" I asked the Lord.

"She represents a spirit of false doctrine," the Lord replied. "This is a spirit perverting My Word; mingling carnality with that which is holy."

Revelation 17:1 ~~ "And there came one of the seven angels which had the seven vials, and talked with me, saying unto me, come hither; I will show unto thee the judgment of the great whore that sitteth upon many waters."

Spirit Of Absalom

I saw a male in the church building begin to go up to all the people in the building and begin to speak to each of them. I walked over to this man and heard his words of flattery and self-promotion. His words were masked with a false humility.

Soon, I noticed that most of the people remaining in the congregation had begun to gather around this man.  "Who is this man?" I asked the Lord.

"This is the spirit of Absalom," the Lord replied. "This spirit is at work within many congregations to steal the hearts of the faithful. This spirit draws many of My children into self-promotion. This is a spirit of idolatry rampant in many congregations and in many of My children's hearts."

2 Samuel 15:1-6 ~~ "{1} And it came to pass after this, that Absalom prepared him chariots and horses, and fifty men to run before him. {2} And Absalom rose up early, and stood beside the way of the gate: and it was so, that when any man that had a controversy came to the king for judgment, then Absalom called unto him, and said, Of what city art thou? And he said, Thy servant is of one of the tribes of Israel.  {3} And Absalom said unto him, See, thy matters are good and right; but there is no man deputed of the king to hear thee.  {4} Absalom said moreover, Oh that I were made judge in the land, that every man which hath any suit or cause might come unto me, and I would do him justice!   {5} And it was so, that when any man came nigh to him to do him obeisance, he put forth his hand, and took him, and kissed him.  {6} And on this manner did Absalom to all Israel that came to the king for judgment: so Absalom stole the hearts of the men of Israel."

Perfect Through Sufferings

I then noticed a group of people standing slightly apart from the rest of the people in the congregation. Some of these people appeared to be quite angry and upset. Others were weeping, and some were standing absolutely still.

As I continued to watch these people, I saw the Lord approach them and knock all of them down to the ground. I was absolutely shocked when I saw this.

Then, the Lord knelt down on the ground in the midst of the people He had just knocked down. Very gently, with great compassion, I saw the Lord draw into His arms and onto His lap each of these people He had knocked down to the ground.

I hesitantly approached the Lord and the group of people the Lord was embracing on the floor of the church building.

"Who are these people, Lord?" I asked.

"These are My greatly beloved ones," the Lord replied tenderly. "They are My prophets. I sent them to congregations, to pastors, to others of My children. Some were honored. Most were not.

"Oftentimes, their words were ignored or ridiculed. They were set aside and pushed aside in many congregations. They endured many situations and persecutions while crying out to Me why it must needs be this way.

"I caused it to be a time of testing for many of them. I allowed many of their sufferings to come upon them in order to bring them to perfection. It is through what they have suffered and endured faithfully that they are now mature spiritually. It is through having been broken of their own agendas and fleshly efforts and desire for renown that I have perfected them."

Hebrews 2:9-10 ~~ "{9} But we see Jesus, who was made a little lower than the angels for the suffering of death, crowned with glory and honor; that he by the grace of God should taste death for every man.   {10} For it became him, for whom are all things, and by whom are all things, in bringing many sons unto glory, to make the captain of their salvation perfect through sufferings."

1 Peter 4:13-14 ~~ "{13} But rejoice, inasmuch as ye are partakers of Christ's sufferings; that, when his glory shall be revealed, ye may be glad also with exceeding joy. {14} If ye be reproached for the name of Christ, happy are ye; for the spirit of glory and of God resteth upon you: on their part he is evil spoken of , but on your part he is glorified."

Old And New Wineskins

I then watched as the Lord rose to His feet, held a hand out to each of the prophets He had knocked to the ground, and gently helped them back to their feet. I saw that each prophet leaned heavily upon the Lord's Hand to raise them back up instead of trying through their own efforts to get back to their feet.

When the prophets were back on their feet, I saw the Lord put what appeared to be water canteens into the hands of each prophet. Some canteens appeared either older or newer than other canteens.

Then, the prophets took the canteens around to the people within the church building. The prophets offered each person a drink from the canteen they were holding. Some of the people appeared to want to drink from either an older or a newer canteen. They were allowed to do so.

Luke 5:36-39 ~~ "{36} And he spake also a parable unto them; No man putteth a piece of a new garment upon an old; if otherwise, then both the new maketh a rent, and the piece that was taken out of the new agreeth not with the old. {37} And no man putteth new wine into old bottles; else the new wine will burst the bottles, and be spilled, and the bottles shall perish. {38} But new wine must be put into new bottles; and both are preserved. {39} No man also having drunk old wine straightway desireth new: for he saith, The old is better."

Repairer Of The Breach

After each person had drank from the canteen, I watched as the Lord began to touch the places within the church building that appeared to be broken down or in need of some type of repair.

As I watched closer, I noticed that the entire church building was actually made up of individual people. As I turned in a slow circle to stare at the entire church building, I became fully aware of the fact that the building was flesh and blood.

I stood in silent awe, watching the Lord repairing and restoring His Church. While the Lord was at work, I realized that what had been a church building consisting of manmade materials was now disappearing. It was being replaced by an organism that appeared to be alive and breathing and growing even as I stared at it.

The Lord continued to work on this organism. As He did, I heard noises behind and around me. I looked around and behind me and saw long lines of people coming towards the Lord. As the people reached the Lord, He reached out, grasped each person, and incorporated that person into the organism He was building.

Slowly, I also approached the Lord.

"I've waited a long time for this moment, My child," the Lord said to me. "Not just for you, but for all of My children."

Then, the Lord reached out for me, gently took Me into His hands, and fit me into my place within the organism He was building.

Isaiah 58:12 ~~ "And they that shall be of thee shall build the old waste places: thou shalt raise up the foundations of many generations; and thou shalt be called, The repairer of the breach, The restorer of paths to dwell in."

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In Him,

Hollie L. Moody

5 February 2004

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