Eyes Wide Open, I am Alive!
There’s Mama kissing Daddy–and her eyes are wide open!” Kurt and Francy exclaim every time they open our wedding album. My most embarrassing moment is ever before me, with no similar pose to replace it. This chapter is an analogy of how God as Elohim, opened my eyes and gave me the ability to say I Am Alive.
Our wedding took place three weeks after Jim’s return from Vietnam in the small church where my father was pastor. The ceremony and reception happened so fast I do not even know who was there; we might as well have gone to the Justice of the Peace.
But anyway, there were still the pictures for which to pose. Although they were the typical wedding poses, we thought they would never end. At last, we came to the final shot, with all eyes on us, for Jim to “kiss the bride.” This one ought to be fun, but I was caught by surprise as Jim put his cold hands around my neck. My eyes shot open like I’d been hit with a bullet!
My unforgettable moment reminds me of Saul, a man who had been persecuting the early Christians after Jesus’ death, burial and resurrection. He dramatically met Jesus on the road to Damascus to persecute more Christians. A light flashed from heaven; he arose from the ground, “but though his eyes were opened, he could see nothing.”(5) He was led to Damascus where Ananias came to him three days later:
And he laid his hands on Saul and said, Brother Saul, the Lord Jesus who appeared to you along the way by which you came here, has sent me that you may recover your sight and be filled with the Holy Spirit. And instantly something like scales fell from Saul’s eyes, and he recovered his sight. Acts 9:17-18 Amplified
Likewise, my eyes were open, but spiritually speaking, something like scales was over my eyes. Although I had accepted Jesus when I was young, and He had been real to me until my husband entered my life, Jim then became my idol.
Four and one-half years later with our second child on the way, Jesus became real again as He was brought before my open/closed eyes as I read the book, Late Great Planet Earth by Hal Lindsey. It caused me to stop, face myself squarely, and to become open and honest with Him.
I shuddered to think of Jesus returning to earth. Could it be in my own lifetime? To look into His eyes-I couldn’t. I just couldn’t. I hadn’t been what He wanted me to be; my life would not be acceptable to Him. I was afraid to utter His name to anyone, even my very best friend who didn’t know Him. But, how could I when my life didn’t show any reason for her or our friends to give Him a second thought?
Where Was the Ability to BE able to say, I Am Alive?
Even so, I knew I was going to heaven, and I highly valued my Christian upbringing, but that’s not what I was giving my children. Jim and I went to church, but it was out of a sense of duty and to ease the conscience. In pondering these thoughts, I knew there had to be more: where, just where, was the ability to be what God wanted me to be?
In looking back at what happened then and in the succeeding seven years, the following allegory is what I believe happened:
At eight years of age, I opened my heart’s door to Jesus, the King of Kings and LORD of Lords! An attendant rolled out the red carpet6 and in walked Jesus as tall and grand as any king could ever be, with love pouring out from His eyes to me.
I gave Jesus a seat at my dining room table7 where I kept Him for the next fourteen years. He did not catch my attention until He reflected Himself through two “mirrors” in my living room-Christian television and Christian books. Could He really be alive, the same yesterday, today and forever like the Bible said?8
I walked into the dining room where Jesus was and asked Him, “Are you really alive, Jesus?” I could plainly see that He was. “Then, you didn’t just die on the cross for my sins where I have been identifying with you?”
“That’s right, I did arise,” He told me. “Don’t you think it’s about time you decided for yourself what you believe and quit relying on your parent’s Christianity? You know that will never do.”9
“I suppose you’re right, Jesus. Tell me what makes these people in the books and on television so happy all the time, and what causes them to talk like they know just what is what?”
JESUS: I thought you’d never ask that question. It’s not what but who.10 Turn around and you will see Him.
I turned around and there in the corner of the room sat a Person I barely recognized as the attendant who rolled out the red carpet for Jesus years ago.
ME: Excuse me, Jesus, I’m so-o em-m-ba-r-rassed. I do-o-n’t believe I know His name.
JESUS: Mr. Holy Spirit.
ME: Mr. Holy Spirit, I apologize for not having known you were here. Would you please forgive me? How have I not known you were still here?
MR. HOLY SPIRIT: It’s not my mission to draw attention to myself,11 but to reveal Jesus to you12 and all He has freely given you from God the Father.13 But, don’t be condemned. Do you remember where Paul, in Acts 19, asked the twelve Ephesian disciples, “Did you receive the Holy Spirit when you believed? They answered, “No, we have not even heard that there is a Holy Spirit,”14
Isn’t that where you stand today? You just haven’t acknowledged me yet, nor understood who I am, nor have you received what I can do for you and in you.
ME: I don’t understand.
MR. HOLY SPIRIT: Remember the other night when your friend Martha came to the door and you still had your hair in rollers? Jim and the children, even the baby, met her at the door and received her in. But, you were fixing your hair while she waited patiently on you. I’ve had to be patient waiting on you, too. But at the same time, I’ve been grieved,15 and quenched,16 by your ignorance and shunning of Me. I am a Person, too, you know. I have a mind,17 a will,18 emotions,19 and I can speak.20 I am to be received by faith21 just as you received by faith the person, Jesus Christ.
ME: That makes sense but I don’t understand what receiving by faith means. But, first, may I ask you just who you are?
Elohim is God’s Own Spirit Who Gives Life
MR. HOLY SPIRIT: Certainly. I am God’s own Spirit. No one can really know what anyone else is thinking, or what he is really like deep inside except that person himself. And, no one can know God’s own thoughts except God’s own Spirit. That’s me! I search God’s mind and I know His deepest thoughts, secrets, and ways. I will reveal them to you and show you things to come.22 That is, if you will believe and allow me to be released from this corner to fill you as you have been commanded to do in the Bible in Ephesians 5:18.
But, that’s not all. I am the very same Spirit and dynamos power who went to the bowels of the earth where Jesus and I openly defeated Satan in his own domain.23 Then, I catapulted Him from the hell He took for you24 and set Him at the right hand of the Father in heavenly places, far above all forces of evil.25
That’s where I have put you, too. Jesus is in you and you are in Him.26 So, if you are just the little toe of Jesus’ foot, you are also above Satan, and have all the power and authority of heaven behind you, just as Jesus does.27 Therefore, you can speak to your mountains “in the name of Jesus” and they will disintegrate.28 You will be able to overcome your problems instead of them ruling over you.29
ME: You really are a very important Person then, aren’t you? But, I don’t fully comprehend what you’re saying. Anyway, Satan’s never bothered me.
MR. HOLY SPIRIT: He has, you just don’t know it. He’s the one who has kept your eyes blind. Furthermore, you haven’t given him any reason to bother you-yet.30 As far as comprehension, that’s my job-to lead you and guide you into all truth31 as you are ready to comprehend, and to give you spiritual discernment of the Scriptures and all things.32
ME: That’s interesting, but may I ask a somewhat selfish question? What does that mean to me personally?
MR. HOLY SPIRIT: That means that when you pick up this Bible and read, you will understand it and know that it is God Almighty speaking directly to you.33 I will make the Word come alive to you personally as I lead and guide you through its pages.34 Nothing will ever be by chance.35 And when you need to recall a Scripture, I will cause you to remember it, giving you instant recall.36
What does it mean to you personally? It means I am able to teach you everything you need to know, as your personal ’round-the-clock tutor.37 I will teach you to pray in faith, believing,38 bestow on you magnificent gifts39 and luscious fruit.40
ME: Then, how can I do without you? Please, please fill me!
MR. HOLY SPIRIT: I can’t.
ME: But, why?
Selfish Self-centeredness – the Root of All Evil
MR. HOLY SPIRIT: I’ve been snooping around in all the corners where you’ve kept me. Don’t you know these books on the occult and astrology are an abomination to God?41 See this bottle you hid from your folks? Just look at all this selfish, unforgiving dirt. My first name is Holy. I can’t live in this mess!42
ME: Okay, Mr. Holy Spirit, I burned the books and cleaned house.43 Thank you for giving me the power to go to my friend and to ask for her forgiveness. Thank you for the words you gave me, to tell her about Jesus when she was about to get a divorce.44 Thank you for the love you gave me for her, and the joy in obeying You, and especially for saving her marriage. That must be some of the fruit you were talking about.45 My house is clean now as far as I know; will you fill me now?
MR. HOLY SPIRIT: You have been seeking to learn of Me and are therefore looking for Me to release myself from this corner, but even I don’t have the power to do that. Remember what John the Baptist said? He said, “Jesus will baptize you with the Holy Spirit.”46 I am the gift;47 He is the giver.48 So, you need to talk to Jesus now.
I turned to Jesus and asked Him to fill me with Mr. Holy Spirit, and to please, please, release Him from the corner where I had neglected Him for so long.
JESUS: There’s still one problem. You are in the way. He can’t fill you as long as you are here.
ME: But, this is my home!
JESUS: We want to live here. Isn’t that what you’ve been asking for? For us to take over now and do the housekeeping?49 You haven’t allowed us to do anything but sit here.50
ME: WHAT DO YOU WANT ME TO DO?
JESUS: It’s not so much what we want to do, it’s what we want to be in you.51 Have you noticed where you seated me? In the baby’s highchair! I want to be LORD of all in you, seated in the Daddy’s chair, the Head, Number One!52
ME: How do I make you Lord?
JESUS: By pulling out the head chair for Me and leaving- permanently.
ME: How can I leave my own home, my husband, my children, forever?
JESUS: By dying.53