I’ve been reading The Seed every day for a few weeks and have felt shifts occurring spiritually that have impacted my life. I felt I should share what’s been happening as it feels like there’s a prompting for a shift in mindset. The Holy Spirit is encouraging us to come to the place where we willingly set aside completely and permanently any residual aspect of an orphan mindset that still influences us.
For context, the role of the Holy Spirit in leading us into truth about our identity was explained by Jesus. “I will not leave you as orphans” (John 14: 18) was the promise He made to His disciples when He was teaching them about what was to come about when He competed His mission. During this discussion, Jesus taught them about the coming of the Holy Spirit, the Spirit of Truth, who would live with them and in them; Jesus said that “on that day you will realize that I am in my Father, you are in me and I am in you”.
In Romans 8:15, we learn that “the Spirit you received brought about your adoption to sonship. And by Him we cry, Abba, Father”. Paul had taught in Ephesians 1 that the adoption to sonship was predestined in accordance with the Father’s pleasure and will. Further, in Romans 8, we realize the process is not immediate but rather we who have the firstfruits of the Spirit await with groaning the process of adoption to sonship.
The Lord reminded me of how quickly the truth of being sons and joint heirs with Christ was grasped when it was first revealed; we began to understand the love of our Father, embraced being part of His family and started to trust in His provision and protection for us with eagerness and fervor. The Lord had showed me a few years back that areas in our heart which were not fully surrendered to the Holy Spirit would grasp spiritual truths in a mixture sometimes – things that appealed to the soul of man – to be powerful, to rule, to be prosperous were wholeheartedly accepted as truth and often ended in a place of imbalance because of the mixture in us – our own desires got in the way. Truth that was less palatable to the soul of man – submitting, sanctification, walking circumspectly, serving, esteeming others more than ourselves, was not so quickly embraced, if at all…
The aspect of the orphan mindset the Lord has been emphasizing to me that still prevails in us, is our independence when it comes to discipline and correction in the house of God, where we’ve continued to hold to our own way in our old mindset. The picture I had was of the street orphans in Durban where I grew up who would find themselves living on the street for many years, fending for themselves. They loved the freedom of no supervision, no discipline, no correction and it became ingrained in their mindset – when they were placed in comfortable, loving homes and families, they resisted the change as they no longer could “have their own way”, often viewing the discipline as harsh, unnecessary and a challenge to their identity. Being adopted into a family was what they desired but having to conform to a different culture, the culture of the house, was not something they easily embraced; many left to wander the streets on their own again.
A Father’s heart of love protects, provides, nurtures, yes – He also guides, corrects, disciplines, supervises and mentors us by His Spirit and by those He joins us to in His family. There are those He has appointed in His household to govern, lead, direct and guide His sons into maturity; He has also set the lonely, the fatherless in families where they will have to learn with their brothers how to share, how to listen, how to serve, how to give, how to love, how to forgive, how to prefer and most importantly, how to not think of themselves more highly than they ought – each one in his place.
So, although there’s been a firming of our identity as sons and an understanding that we are in His family, bear His name and are entrusted with His house, we have continued to live as orphans in our independence, rejecting His discipline, His correction, His supervision and His mentoring. More so those who grew up in church and were directed out into the wilderness in preparation for the establishment of the kingdom age – it’s been infinitely much harder to give up our own way of thinking and to see ourselves as anything but independent, self-sufficient and of no need of submission and discipline.
I feel that we need to hear the call of the Spirit of truth as He desires to bring us into the fullness of our adoption into the Beloved. I feel the time is right to surrender all aspects of being orphans, change our mindset and embrace fully our sonship.