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Poised Before Almighty God

by Dr. Mark Virkler

            I desire earnestly to live as Jesus did, out of the Fathers initiative, doing only what He saw His Father doing (Jn. 5:19,20; 8:38). However, before I could live that way, I needed first to learn how to become a seer. In a rationalistic culture where seeing with the eyes of the heart is generally looked upon with scorn, it takes a monumental effort to become at ease with seeing vision as Jesus did. It is a huge step even to believe that such a thing is possible.

            My experience, as well as the experience of many others, has convinced me that once we have grown accustomed to looking expectantly into the spirit world for a vision from the Lord, it most readily appears. The simple act of looking in faith opens one up to begin seeing that which is there.

            I am convinced that the spirit world is there, whether or not I am seeing it.  In becoming a seer I am simply learning to see what is.  In learning to see, I am learning to bring alive an atrophied sense (i.e., my visionary capacity) and then present it to God to be filled.

            Once my visionary sense has been rejuvenated and presented before Almighty God, I am offered the opportunity to live as did Jesus of Nazareth, out of the continuous flow of divine vision.

            The Prophets of Israel could simply say, I looked, and as they quieted themselves before God, they saw (Dan. 7:2,9;13).  I have found that once I have reclaimed the use of my visionary capacity, I too can simply quiet myself in the Lords presence, look, and see the visions of Almighty God.  I am a seer simply because I have become a looker.

            The Bible says we have not because we ask not.  For years I never saw, because I never looked.  As I teach people to look, I find that they become seers.  This sounds simple, and it is for many, particularly those who are intuitive, spontaneous, and visionary by nature, and who have not allowed the pressure of a culture which idolizes logical, analytical and cognitive functions to cut off their natural, spontaneous openness to vision.

However, for those like myself, who were born naturally logical, analytical and cognitive and have had these inherent leanings reinforced by the rationalism of their culture, seeing the vision of God may not be so easy.  Often the intuitive and visionary functions have literally atrophied and died through lack of use; therefore, for these people, the process in not as simple as just looking and seeing.  Even as a muscle which has atrophied through lack of use must be exercised in order to restore its vitality, so must an unused, and thus atrophied, sense be exercised.

This involves three steps:  

  1. Repenting of the sin of scorning that which God has created, 
  2. asking God to breathe new life into this inner sense of seeing, and 
  3. developing this sense which God is restoring.  

This development involves standing (in belief that God will do this), taking the first wobbly steps, and gaining strength to the point of walking with ease, allowing God to direct the pathway.

            This is exactly what has happened with vision in my life, as well as in the lives of many others.  Through the scorn heaped upon it, and through continuous disuse, my visionary capacity had atrophied and died.  Therefore, when I began looking to see the vision God wanted to present to me, I saw nothing.  I had so scorned my visionary capacity that it was unable to function when called upon to do so.

            As pastors have often preached, our heart is like a radio; we must tune it so we can hear Gods voice. We must also tune it to see Gods vision.  However, in this case, my hearts radio was not only out of tune; I would characterize it more as utterly broken and needing to be totally revived by the Master.

            I began the process of restoration by repenting of my scorn toward my visionary capacity.  I asked Gods forgiveness for not honoring and using that which He had created and given me.  I also repented of participating in the idolization of logic and analytical thinking which had swept over me, as well as over my culture.  I covenanted to honor and seek His ability to flow through vision as much as I had honored and sought His ability to flow through analytical thought.

            Then I asked God to breathe upon my visionary capacity and restore it, to bring it back to life and teach me how to allow Him to flow through it.

            Now I was ready to take my first few wobbly steps.  As I sat in my study seeking Gods face, I was drawn to a scene from John 4 in which Jesus sat by the well and talked with a Samaritan woman.  Sensing that God wanted to sit and talk with me, I pictured the scene with a slight adaptation.  Instead of seeing the woman talking with Jesus, I saw myself talking with Jesus.

As I peered intently into the picture and looked to see what might happen, it came alive through the Holy Spirit and Jesus moved and gestured, as someone often does when he is talking.  With His movement, there came into my heart His words and directives for my life.  I sensed Gods voice as spontaneous, good thoughts.

(Note: We all know that the evil one comes to us with spontaneous evil thoughts which is why we take every thought captive 2 Corinthians 10:3-5.  So why wouldn't Gods voice come to us as spontaneous, flowing, good thoughts John -39?)

            This was the first time I had ever sought for vision in this way, and I was thrilled to see it so readily come alive and be taken over by the power of the Holy Spirit.  You see, I had in essence poised myself for the divine flow by setting the scene and then asking God to fill it.  I found as I repeated this experiment in subsequent days that God continued to move through these self-made scenes, causing them to come alive with His own life and become supernatural visions direct from the throne of grace.

            Now, let's answer a few questions you may be asking.  First, Don't you limit God by forcing Him to fit into the scene you have set for Him to fill?  The answer is, "Absolutely yes!Of course God has some flexibility as He takes over the scene which you have set.  He can move it to a certain extent in one direction or another.  However, if your scene is totally removed from that which God wants to show you, you will find that nothing happens.  The scene does not come alive.  It remains dead.  God is not able to move in it.  When this happened to me, my response has been simply to relax and say, God, how do You want to reveal Yourself in this situation?  With that, God implants a vision through which He can and does move.

            A second question is, "Well then, why don't you just look for His vision, rather than begin by manufacturing your own?"  As I have said before, that works fine for the naturally intuitive and visionary person.  However, the one with an atrophied visionary capacity will often need a learning tool to get him started.  Once accustomed to vision, he will be able to discard the learning tool, and simply look and see."

            A third question is, "Are you saying that your manufactured image is a divine vision?  Of course not!  My image is my image; Gods supernatural vision is His vision.  We never confuse the two.  We never say that my priming of the pump is Gods vision.  It is simply my priming the pump, it is godly imagination.  However, when that inner click is experienced and the vision moves with a life of its own, flowing from the throne of grace, it then is obviously no longer my own.  Now it has become Gods.  Mine is mine, and Gods is Gods."

            A fourth question is, "Where does the Bible teach that we are to set the scene ourselves, in order for God to begin flowing in vision?  My response back is, Where does the Bible say that we are not to set a scene and ask God to fill it?"  I do not think there is a clear teaching on either side, which means we will have to marshal some verses that we could interpret as supporting one of these viewpoints. 

Another option would be to allow each individual Christian the liberty of working out his own salvation in this area, since there is no absolutely clear biblical teaching on the issue. The closest verses that could conceivably speak against setting a scene are those which speak of avoiding vain imaginations and not setting up any graven images.

According to Webster, a graven image is an object of worship carved usually from wood or stone.  Obviously, the scene we set in our minds is not carved or worshiped.  It serves simply as a stepping stone to the living flow of divine images. 

Webster defines vain as having no real value; idle, worthless.  I do not see a learning tool as something having no real value, or being idle and worthless.  Learning tools are valuable, having an active place in the learning experience.  The fact that the Bible speaks of vain imaginations tells us that there is also a non-vain use of imagination.  I believe that the setting of a scene for God to fill is one of these non-vain uses of imagination.

            On the positive side of this issue, I would like to make several points:

1.      All children and two-thirds of the adults I have polled normally picture Bible scenes as they read them.

2.      As we read our Bibles, praying for a spirit of revelation (Eph. ), God causes the stories to come alive and He speaks to us out of them.  This is essentially the same process which we are describing when we say prime the pump.

3.      One-fourth of the adults I poll usually picture the scenes of the songs they are singing, and as God inhabits their praises, these scenes come alive and move with a life generated from the throne of God.  This, too, is the same process I am describing when I suggest painting the first scene.

            This process of seeing a scene is being used naturally and without conscious effort by many in Christianity today, particularly by those who are intuitive and visionary by nature, and in reality it is not a new thing at all.  It is a definition and statement of that which has always happened rather naturally among some, but now this process can be experienced by the rest of us to help us become more sensitive to the divine flow within us.

            It must be remembered that the conscious setting of a scene is only a temporary learning tool, needed only by some individuals.  The naturally intuitive person will not need this learning tool.  He will simply look to see, and the vision will be there.  The analytically-oriented person may shortly put aside this learning tool as he learns how to open himself naturally and normally to vision.

            It is possible that if we lived in a more biblical culture, we would not have so many obstacles to overcome in learning to live regularly and naturally in the divine flow of vision.  If we typically discussed our dreams at breakfast with our families and sought Gods interpretation, as Joseph and other Hebrews did, we would find a natural skill built into our lives concerning visionary things.  However, who in America takes their dreams seriously, and discusses them regularly in a family gathering?  Practically no one.  If we did, we would be viewed as strange.  Is it any wonder that skill in, and openness to, visions are almost totally lacking in our culture?

            As a church, we need to repent for having allowed the rationalism of our time to distort our own perspective of a balanced lifestyle. (This rationalism was introduced into the Western World through the writings of St. Thomas Aquinas in 122574.) Some fear that there may be seeds of Eastern thought in some of the teaching of the Church today.  Did we ever stop to realize that Jesus was not a Westerner, that God did not intend for us to idolize logic and treat vision with scorn?  No, it was Thomas Aquinas who influenced us in this direction.

            Church, let us come back to the balance of Jesus of Nazareth, Who did nothing on His own initiative, but only that which He saw and heard the Father doing (Jn 5:19,20,30;,28,38).  I have shared my struggle and walk that has brought me to an ability to live this way.  I challenge you to find the way that will work for you.  The veil is torn, access is available, fellowship with the Holy Spirit is possible.  Will you enter in?  Will you find the way?  Will you enter within the veil and experience God in direct encounter, or will you be satisfied to experience Him only through the book He has written?

            God is calling for those who will make Jesus their perfect example.  For those who will aspire to live and walk as He did.  For those who will do nothing on their own initiative, but will live as Jesus did, out of a constant flow of rhema and vision within.

            Will you search until you find the way to that lifestyle and experience?  Will you not stop with theology, but continue on until you discover Him?

            Will you find Him?  

            You search the Scriptures, because you think that in them you have eternal life; and it is these that bear witness of Me; and you are unwilling to come to Me, that you may have life.

            Prayer:  Lord, we come to You.  We repent of allowing our culture to dictate scorn for the visionary capacity which You have created and placed within us.  We ask Your forgiveness and ask that You restore to our hearts a proper use of dream and vision.  Restore our ability to hear and to see.  Draw each of us into all that You have for us, into ongoing divine encounter.  Thank You, Lord!

 

Additional Resources Which Relate to Using the Eyes of Your Heart as You Approach God

  1. What Does the Bible Teach about Visualization?
  2. You Can See Visions! They Are a Pathway to God
  3. Poised Before Almighty God
  4. Lord, When Is “Priming The Pump” Acceptable and Unacceptable?
  5. Initiative - Should I Take It? by Charity Kayembe
  6. Help! I Have Trouble Seeing Vision!
  7. Training Your Child to Encounter Jesus - Godly Imagination & Visions
  8. Training Package - 4 Keys To Hearing God's Voice (One key is to use vision)
  9. Training Package - Hear God Through Your Dreams (Dreams utilize imagery)
  10. Book - Am I Being Deceived? (Difference between New Agers and Christians)
  11. Book  - Secret Place (Examples of God painting beautiful scenes during prayer times)
  12. Divine Healing Toolbox CD/DVD Set (using vision while praying for healing)
  13. Protestantism's 500-Year-Old  Bitter Root Judgment and Inner Vow (a chance to repent)
  14. Training Package - Prayers That Heal the Heart (Inner healing prayer utilizes vision)
  15. Western Study Verses Biblical Meditation
  16. Also related to this topic: How to Receive Revelation Knowledge

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Gifted to Succeed

Gifted to Succeed

by Mark and Patti Virkler | 189 Pages

There is no joy so complete as knowing who you are -- who God has made you to be and what your basic giftings and drives are. The goal of this book is to get you effectively functioning in roles which allow you to adequately express your heart motivations and gifts. The fulfillment you experience when you function in your gifts and calling is a joy almost beyond belief.

"Do you see a man skilled in his work? He will stand before kings; He will not stand before obscure men." (Prov. 22:29)

Price: $12.95
The Great Mystery

Great Mystery

by Mark and Patti Virkler | 54 Pages

This is a workbook which guides you in meditating on hundreds of New Testament verses which speak of Who Christ is within us and how to touch and release Him and His wisdom, power and might continuously and effortlessly out through our lives. You will look up every New Testament verse on being "in Christ," "in Him" and "in Whom." In addition, you will meditate on the various names given to the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit, and realize that all that He is is available within you and even joined to you (1 Cor. 6:17)! Absolutely amazing!

Price: $9.95
Health Mastery Through MRT

Health Mastery Through MRT

by Mark and Patti Virkler | 82 Pages

Wouldn't it be great if there were a way for my body to tell me exactly what it needs and desires, without having to take expensive or invasive tests? Wouldn't it be amazing if I could perform these tests as often as I wanted, right in my own home (or anywhere I wanted), with no costly instruments necessary? 

Price: $19.95

Hearing God Through Biblical Meditation

by Mark and Patti Virkler | 179 Pages | $15.99 retail list price

For many years I studied the Bible incorrectly, and it produced death rather than life. Even though I had a knowledge of the Scriptures, I did not personally experience the life and the realities they revealed. The Bible calls this the ministry of death, rather than the ministry of righteousness (2 Cor. 3:6–9). Upon coming out of Bible college, I found myself just like the apostle Paul, attacking those who disagreed with my theology. 

Price: $12.95

How Do You Know?

by Mark and Patti Virkler | 180 Pages

How do you know? What is the process you use to discover truth? I did not ask that question during the first 25 years of my life. I used eleven different methods for discovering truth including: if my parents said so, then it was so. If my teacher said it was so, then it was so. If my pastor said it was so, then it was so. If my theology said it was so, then it was so. I have discarded them all and adopted a twelfth method, which is in harmony with what the Bible teaches. We teach you this method in this book.

Price: $14.95
How to Build a Winning Team

How to Build a Winning Team

by Mark and Patti Virkler | 105 Pages

Can I succeed like others have? What do I need to do? How do I go about it? What if I don't have the gifts necessary to do something great?  The wonderful truth revealed in Scripture is that God uses ordinary people to accomplish extraordinary feats, especially when they say, "Yes, Lord" to the destiny He has prepared for them!

Price: $10.95
How to Receive the Baptism in the Holy Spirit

How to Receive the Baptism in the Holy Spirit

by Mark and Patti Virkler | 44 Pages | Published 2002

This brief booklet walks a person through the main obstacles to speaking in tongues, and shows how each one can be successfully overcome. It is down-to-earth, practical and biblical, and in it Mark Virkler shares the struggles he went through before he was able to speak in tongues. Some were theological issues and some simply practical issues, like the fact that if I am going to speak in tongues, I will need to speak. Otherwise, nothing happens.

Price: $2.95
How to Walk by the Spirit

How to Walk by the Spirit

by Mark and Patti Virkler | 136 Pages | Previous name "Sense Your Spirit"

Are you like many western Christians who have been taught little about how to sense their spirits? Do you have trouble even defining what spirit sensations feel like within you, much less recognizing them? This training was birthed from Mark’s passion to live out of his spirit, and thus release the anointing of God. The problem he faced was lack of clear biblical definition as to what his spirit felt like. So Mark looked up every verse in the Bible on heart and spirit.

Price: $9.95
Intimacy with the Holy Spirit

Intimacy with the Holy Spirit

by Mark and Patti Virkler | 223 Pages

This book leads you in meditating on and journaling about two hundred and fifty verses that discuss the Holy Spirit. You will grow in intimacy with the indwelling Holy Spirit, and the anointing within you will increase! You will exclaim as the disciples did on the Emmaus Road “Did not our heart burn within us…while He opened to us the scriptures?” (Luke 24:32)! In addition to being led to journal through these verses, you will read numerous two-way journal entries from Mark Virkler, as well as a five-page prayer at the conclusion of the book.

Price: $10.95

Kids Can

by Karen Barnes | 98 Pages

This book will inspire you and train you to teach children to minister in the power of the Spirit! And the stories it contains will bring tears to your eyes! Kids Can is a message for the children of today about their destiny tomorrow. When kids encounter the pure essence of Jesus, they will become empowered, equipped and energized to serve Him accurately and with amazing clarity. As they hear His voice and are encouraged in their giftings, strong leaders are created and maturity, vision and skills are fine tuned.

Price: $14.95

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