Psalm 139:23-24 - Search me, O God, and know my heart; try me, and know my anxieties; and see if there is any wicked way in me, and lead me in the way everlasting.
Many brothers and sisters in Christ I know are experiencing a quickening in their spirit, God showing them areas of their lives that He needs to deal with. Thinking on this this morning took me all over in scripture.
The above scripture and the next one have been part of my prayers these days. I have been nudged by God and I so long to be obedient. I trust He will guide me. Psalm 51:10-11 - Create in me a clean heart, O God, and renew a steadfast spirit within me. Do not cast me away from Your presence, and do not take Your Holy Spirit from me.
If we are believers and of the opinion that Jesus will return soon, we also know that He wants not only a pure and spotless bride, but a Church without spot or wrinkle. While I'm certain no church is absolutely perfect, some are better than others! And God is cleaning up His Church too. Hallelujah!
We do not know the day or hour Christ will return and there are still many events that need to take place, oh how fast we are seeing things the Bible has said would happen occur if we watch the news. There are still many who don't recognize this...
I went also to the Book of Revelation where there are letters to seven types of church we can see today. Six of them had a list of sins: what will happen if they do not repent and also the encouraging word if they do. Only one church was a good example, the Church of Philadephia, which kept His word and did not deny His name. In other words, they did not compromise God or His Word. They spoke the hard words of sin, and judgment and the good words and promises. All the truth. To the others, nothing good would come of not repenting but there would be, in each church, a remnant who would be forgiven. God is cleaning up His Church.
Jesus also demands that His bride be perfected. That comes with our spirits knowing God's Spirit is at work...first with a nudge, then with our acknowledgment to the area He wants to perfect in us. I have quite a few areas so He'd better work fast! We all do.
As we have discussed a couple times in Sunday school, we must trust that God will do the work. We cannot do it on our own...we need the Spirit of God to reveal it, then be obedient. It will require a lot of listening, repenting and this obedience to what the Spirit wants us to do. There's a fine line, however, that seems indistinguishable between His work in us and our own attempt to "do better," unless He very directly shows us. It requires a lot of seeking and asking. And if we ask the right things, He is quick to respond.
There is also a parable about ten virgins that seemed to me to apply. We will not know when the Lord will return. We must always be ready. We must present ourselves also as pure and spotless. All in preparation for our Bridegroom. Purification of the bride might include being watchful for His return. It's part of what we are called to do. They all had oil lamps (that one might see). They all had to be sure they always had an ample supply of oil and needed to tend to the trimming of the wicks that these lamps would always burn. The reason being that they be alert to the coming of their bridegroom. The Bridegroom, of course, is Jesus...at His second coming...who is coming for that pure and spotless, sanctified bride. The oil symbolizes the Holy Spirit which guides into all truth, who convicts of sin, who helps in the process of our sanctification...becoming without spot or wrinkle. We cannot be slumbering or the door will shut for those unprepared at His return. (Matthew 25:1-13)
So, my prayer is that He search me, try me for any wickedness, then create in me a clean heart and a spirit to hold me fast to Him.
Revelation 19:7-8 - Let us be glad and rejoice and give Him glory, for the marriage of the Lamb has come, and His wife has made herself ready. And to her it was granted to be arrayed in fine linen, clean and bright, for the fine linen is the righteous acts of the saints.