Guilty for Carnality

By Steve Irons - "Here is a simple example of how George would get to me."

The initial purpose of the monthly "all night of prayer" was to pray for an accommodation place for Fullerton. In the beginning it was exciting to stay up all night (in those days the time was from 10pm to  5am).

After many years of praying (with no obvious answer from God about an accommodation place), I was mentally and physically worn out and I felt that other people were also. Overburdened and concerned, I read about King Solomon's huge building projects and the problems he had with God's people. I was surprised to read that not only were they building a "house for God", but they were also building a number of resplendent homes for Solomon and his many wives.

Solomon's heavy handedness on the people ultimately resulted in rebellion and division in the kingdom, particularly when Solomon's son insisted that his little finger would be thicker than his own father's in regards to hard labor.

I spoke to George about this story and entreated him to discontinue the all nights of prayer. Instead of hearing me out, he turned on me and said that I was being "weak" and "carnal". The one thing we were not going to do is to back down from having all nights of prayer. Didn't I realize that God was blessing this ministry because of the all nights of prayer? And of course, how could I argue against that? How could I stop the very thing that was a means of blessing? Not to mention that I was becoming carnal. So I shut up.

As it turns out I think George may have talked to Betty because before long the time for the all nights of prayer was changed from 7pm to 2 am. Hearing this, I was thankful for even this small change. Was George ultimately concerned for the well-being and health of God's people? If he were, he never told me.

The point of my story is that George knew how to pull my chain. He had me feeling guilty for even suggesting a change. I felt ashamed because I was thinking about myself rather than God's high calling and purpose. I chose to go the "low" way instead of the "high" way. That's how he got to me.

Did I fail God's people? Yes, I let them down because I did not persist in standing for their needs. It was simply easier to let George have his way. On the other hand, I had a new issue to struggle with, my own guilt and shame for letting the Lord down by giving way to my own self-centeredness and carnality.

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