Trial brings some things besides pain. But mostly, it brings pain. The value of the cross centers upon the suffering of Christ. When we think of the suffering of Christ, we think chiefly of the cross. But I think His worst suffering was Gethsemane. That's when Satan tempted Him to walk away, but when He knew He must walk through.
If God had given Christ an alternative to the cross, He would have taken it. Immediately. Gladly. The value of overcoming trial is proportionate to the realness of the trial. Theoretical trials don't work. If our Lord and Savior does not desperately wish to escape, His staying does not stun us. His obedience is what stuns us. It's the staying.
Have any of you ever been so beset by a trial that you think it is beyond your endurance to bear it? I'm sure you have. You want it to end, and would even leave the world, if God would grant it. It is that real. Nothing theoretical. But you stay. Staying leaves its mark—on earth, and in heaven. It leaves its mark, too, on the sufferer. Some marks are metaphoric, some literal.
I am undergoing a trial now that is so severe I cannot start the Revelation show, as I promised. I don't have the emotional capital to be alone in a room talking to a camera and a microphone, even about the great things of God. I don't know when I will again. The great things of God seem less than great to me right now. My view is temporarily dimmed. All I have right now is faith.
Clyde Pilkington would have been a good general in an army. He is a general in the army of Christ. Very few teach the true gospel of Paul full-time in the earth today. Among those who do, Clyde Pilkington is their general. He does not think of himself as such; he is a working general. He is the general in the trench with his troops. He cannot help being what he is; God made him a gifted encourager.
Dan Sheridan called this morning. No one reading this realizes what Dan Sheridan has undergone these past two years. I did not even realize. Satan has a target on Dan's back; do not judge until you know. Dan went from teaching the gospel of grace full time, to his own Gethsemane, where he has been for two years.
There occurred, this morning, a miraculous three-way conference call between Dan, Clyde and me. It was miraculous because of the respective trials and that the general was on the line. It was miraculous because of what God brings out of trial, when one least expects it—and doesn't even think one wants it.
The short of this is that Dan and I are reviving the Zender/Sheridan show—tonight. We will record the first show tonight, over the phone, and plan on releasing it Monday, God willing. I have no other details right now.
All of this took place twenty minutes ago. It was born out of trial and pain and the necessity of staying in this trench, staying in this war when Satan would have us out. I cannot now speak alone in an empty room—even about God—but I can speak to my brother about God. And I will. We don't know exactly what we're doing, but we've done it before, so it will come to us. We will talk about the political situation on the earth today, as well as the situation, on earth, of the members of the body of Christ—in the midst of it all. How do we live as strangers in such a strange place? How do we live when our realm is inherent, not here, but among the celestials? Does it matter who is elected on November 6?
Thank you for your prayers, for both Dan and me. Please pray for Clyde as well. Pray for everyone attempting this kind of work.
Sorry for being away from this blog. Thank you for your patience. Thank you for not forsaking me.
We will talk as the days progress.
Watch for an email about the all-new Zender-Sheridan show.
Watch for the snatching away, when you shall be picked up by strong arms: Christ's.
© 2012 by Martin Zender