entering his rest, entering the Kingdom of God, eternal life, experience, Fellowship of His Sufferings, God our Father, God's love, Jesus Christ, joy, new life, peace, poem, revelation, suffering, the dawning of a new day, the promised land, trials, visions, walking by the spirit, Walking in the Light
You might remember what the apostle Paul said about his overwhelming spiritual experiences, his visions and his thorn that kept him from being conceited. Paul wrote,
1 I must go on boasting. Though there is nothing to be gained by it, I will go on to visions and revelations of the Lord.
2 I know a man in Christ who fourteen years ago was caught up to the third heaven—whether in the body or out of the body I do not know, God knows.
3 And I know that this man was caught up into paradise—whether in the body or out of the body I do not know, God knows—
4 and he heard things that cannot be told, which man may not utter.
5 On behalf of this man I will boast, but on my own behalf I will not boast, except of my weaknesses—
6 though if I should wish to boast, I would not be a fool, for I would be speaking the truth; but I refrain from it, so that no one may think more of me than he sees in me or hears from me.
7 So to keep me from becoming conceited because of the surpassing greatness of the revelations, a thorn was given me in the flesh, a messenger of Satan to harass me, to keep me from becoming conceited.
8 Three times I pleaded with the Lord about this, that it should leave me.
9 But he said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore I will boast all the more gladly of my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ may rest upon me.
10 For the sake of Christ, then, I am content with weaknesses, insults, hardships, persecutions, and calamities. For when I am weak, then I am strong. (2 Cor 12:1-10 ESV)
I assume that Paul already pointed to these experiences in his first letter to the Corinthians where he wrote,
9 But, as it is written, “What no eye has seen, nor ear heard, nor the heart of man imagined, what God has prepared for those who love him”—
10 these things God has revealed to us through the Spirit. For the Spirit searches everything, even the depths of God. (1 Cor 2:9-10 ESV)
We do not know exactly, but it seems to me that Paul did not dare to share his experiences ‘publicly’ with anyone. I imagine he only could do so secretly if other believers had a similar foretaste of divine life in heaven. God’s overwhelming love appears to be a mystery to be explored for eternity, indeed!
It was just today that I recalled God having inspired me to write a poem almost seven years ago. I remember while writing I could clearly see what I was writing about in a very bright vision. I was not only a viewer from the outside, so to say, I found myself involved in the midst of it all. Eventually, Our Heavenly Father whom I dare to call ‘Daddy’ as His tender love is beyond imaginable, our God had welcomed me at the end of the poem after many, many hard trials I had to endure. Before that very day I had seen and enjoyed Christ’s presence and also our Father’s for about six years. After writing this poem, God withdrew His enjoyable presence and these trials began. As I wrote this poem, it was like a prophecy and a promise from God at the same time. I knew I was writing about ‘something’ I had not known yet. However, I sensed that it was all about entering His Rest, about entering the Promised Land , or about entering the Kingdom of God like Jesus told Nicodemus,
“Truly, truly, I say to you, unless one is born again he cannot see the kingdom of God.” Nicodemus said to him, “How can a man be born when he is old? Can he enter a second time into his mother’s womb and be born?” Jesus answered, “Truly, truly, I say to you, unless one is born of water and the Spirit, he cannot enter the kingdom of God. ((Jn 3:3-5 ESV – emphasis in italics added)
Although “Entering the Promised Land” is not my poetry blog, I want to share this poem with you on here now, too. I know that not everyone likes poems which I do understand. Yet it appears to me that the secret things of God can’t be but hinted at, whether in a poem, in a painting, in a song – whatever.
In Your Arms…
There is a land not known before
Where surging billows touch the shore
Not loud and mighty as you’d think
But soft and slightly on the brink
Of a new life you could not see
As long as you swam in the sea
Of trouble, trial, and distress
You thought that life was all a mess
But suddenly and unforeseen
There is the King who calls His Queen
To leave the troubled sea behind
And enter rest that’s God-designed
You take her hand and draw her near
Close to Your heart, she has no fear
To touch You since You are her Man
Who pleases her like God just can
You stilled the waters, calmed the storm
The air blows gentle, mild and warm
No need is here to hide a thing
Since all is bright, there is no sting
Of death, of anger, wrath or strife
Instead, here’s only love and life
Your eyes so tender, warm and pure
A gaze from You is like a cure
That makes forget all ever done
Your presence here shines like the sun
Embraced by You for hours long
Enjoying peace and love so strong
That waters never ever quench
Love’s liquid flames which like a drench
Drown senses and awake what’s new
In blissful hugs that come from You
All images © Susanne Schuberth 2021