The Gift of Woundedness

By Francis Frangipane

The world and all it contains was created for one purpose: to showcase the grandeur of God's Son. In Jesus, the nature of God is magnificently and perfectly revealed; He is the "express image" of God (Heb. 1:3 KJV). Yet to gaze upon Christ is also to see God's pattern for man. As we seek to be like Him, we discover that our need was created for His sufficiency. We also see that, once the redemptive nature of Christ begins to triumph in our lives, mercy begins to triumph in the world around us.

How will we recognize revival when it comes? Behold, here is the awakening we seek: men and women, young and old, all conformed to Jesus. When will revival begin? It starts the moment we say yes to becoming like Him; it spreads to others as Christ is revealed through us.

Yet to embrace Christ's attitude toward mercy is but a first step in our spiritual growth. The process of being truly conformed to Christ compels us into deeper degrees of transformation. Indeed, just as Jesus learned obedience through the things that He suffered (see Heb. 5:8), so also must we. And it is here, even while we stand in intercession or service to God, that Christ gives us the gift of woundedness.

"Gift?" you ask. Yes, to be wounded in the service of mercy and, instead of closing our hearts, allow woundedness to crown love, is to release God's power in redemption. The steadfast prayer of the wounded intercessor holds great sway upon the heart of God.

We cannot become Christlike without being wounded. You see, even after we come to Christ, we carry encoded within us preset limits concerning how far we will go for love, and how much we are willing to suffer for redemption. When God allows us to be wounded, He exposes those human boundaries and reveals what we lack of His nature.

The path narrows as we seek true transformation. Indeed, many Christians fall short of Christ's stature because they have been hurt and offended by people. They leave churches discouraged, vowing never again to serve or lead or contribute because, when they offered themselves, their gift was marred by unloving people. To be struck or rejected in the administration of our service can become a great offense to us, especially as we are waiting for, and even expecting, a reward for our good efforts.

Yet wounding is inevitable if we are following Christ. Jesus was both "marred" (Isa. 52:14) and "wounded" (Zech. 13:6), and if we are sincere in our pursuit of His nature, we will suffer as well. How else will love be perfected?

Yet, let us beware. We will either become Christlike and forgive the offenders or we will enter a spiritual time warp where we abide continually in the memory of our wounding. Like a systemic disease, the hurtful memories infect every aspect of our existence. In truth, apart from God, the wounding that life inflicts is incurable. God has decreed that only Christ in us can survive.

The Wounds of a Prayer Warrior
Intercessors live on the frontier of change. We are positioned to stand between the needs of man and the provision of God. Because we are the agents of redemption, Satan will always seek the means to offend, discourage, silence, or otherwise steal the strength of our prayers. The wounding we receive must be interpreted in light of God's promise to reverse the effects of evil and make injustice work for our good (see Rom. 8:28). Since spiritual assaults are inevitable, we must discover how God uses our wounds as the means to greater power. This was exactly how Christ brought redemption to the world.

Jesus knew that maintaining love and forgiveness in the midst of suffering was the key that unlocked the power of redemption. Isaiah 53:11 tells us, "By His knowledge the Righteous One, My Servant, will justify the many, as He will bear their iniquities."

Jesus possessed revelation knowledge into the mystery of God. He knew that the secret to unleashing world-transforming power was found at the cross, in suffering. At the cross, payment for sin was made. As Christ forgave His enemies, heaven's power rent the temple veil in two. Christ's stripes purchased our healing. I am not just talking about suffering, but the suffering of love.

The terrible offense of the cross became the place of redemption for the world. Yet, remember, Jesus calls us to a cross as well (see Matt. 16:24). Wounding is simply an altar upon which our sacrifice to God is prepared.

Listen again to Isaiah's prophetic description of Jesus' life. His words at first seem startling, but as we read, we discover a most profound truth concerning the power of woundedness. He wrote, "But the Lord was pleased to crush Him, putting Him to grief; if He would render Himself as a guilt offering, He will see His offspring, He will prolong His days, and the good pleasure of the Lord will prosper in His hand" (Isa. 53:10).

How did the power of God's pleasure prosper in Christ's hand? During His times of crushing, woundedness and devastation, instead of retaliating, Jesus rendered Himself "as a guilt offering."

The crushing is not a disaster; it is an opportunity. You see, our purposeful love may or may not touch the sinner's heart, but it always touches the heart of God. We are crushed by people, but we need to allow the crushing to ascend as an offering to God. The greatest benefit of all is the effect our mercy has on the Father. If we truly want to be instruments of God's good pleasure, then it is redemption, not wrath, that must prosper in our hands. If we are Christ-followers, we must offer ourselves as an offering for the guilt of others.

Conformed to the Lamb
When Christ encounters conflict, though He is the Lion of Judah, He comes as the Lamb of God. Even when He is outwardly stern, His heart is always mindful that He is the "guilt offering." Thus, Jesus not only asks the Father to forgive those who have wounded Him, but also numbers Himself with the transgressors and intercedes for them (see Isa. 53:12). He does this because the Father takes "no pleasure in the death of the wicked" (Ezek. 33:11), and it is the pleasure of God that Jesus seeks.

Is this not the wonder and mystery, yes, and the power, of Christ's cross? In anguish and sorrow, wounded in heart and soul, still He offered Himself for His executioners' sins. Without visible evidence of success, deemed a sinner and a failure before man, He courageously held true to mercy. In the depth of terrible crushing, He let love attain its most glorious perfection. He uttered the immortal words, "Father, forgive them; for they do not know what they are doing" (Luke 23:34).

Christ could have escaped. He told Peter as the Romans came to arrest Him, "Do you think that I cannot appeal to My Father, and He will at once put at My disposal more than twelve legions of angels?" (Matt. 26:53). In less than a heartbeat, the skies would have been flooded with thousands of warring angels. Yes, Jesus could have escaped, but mankind would have perished. Christ chose to go to hell for us rather than return to heaven without us. Instead of condemning mankind, He rendered "Himself as a guilt offering" (Isa. 53:10, italics mine). He prayed the mercy prayer, "Father, forgive them" (Luke 23:34).

Jesus said, "He who believes in Me, the works that I do, he will do also" (John 14:12). We assume He meant that we would work His miracles, but Jesus did not limit His definition of "works" to the miraculous. The works He did---the redemptive life, the mercy cry, the identification with sinners, rendering Himself a guilt offering---all the works He did, we will "do also."

Thus, because He lives within us, we see that Isaiah 53 does not apply exclusively to Jesus; it also becomes the blueprint for Christ in us. Indeed, was this not part of His reward, that He would see His offspring? (see Isa.. 53:10) Beloved, we are the progeny of Christ!

Read these words from Paul's heart:

"Now I rejoice in my sufferings for your sake, and in my flesh I do my share on behalf of His body, which is the church, in filling up what is lacking in Christ's afflictions" (Col. 1:24).

What did the apostle mean? Did not Christ fully pay mankind's debts once and for all? Did Paul imply that we now take Jesus' place? No, we will never take Jesus' place. It means that Jesus has come to take our place. The Son of God manifests all the aspects of His redemptive, sacrificial life through us. Indeed, "as He is, so also are we in this world" (1 John 4:17).

Paul not only identified with Christ in his personal salvation, but he was also consumed with Christ's purpose. He wrote, "That I may know Him and the power of His resurrection and the fellowship of His sufferings, being conformed to His death" (Phil. 3:10).

For those who blame others for the decline of our nation, to be a follower of the Lamb, you must render yourself as an offering for their sin. By your wounds they shall be healed.

What a wondrous reality is the "fellowship of His sufferings." Here, in choosing to yoke our existence with Christ's purpose, we find true friendship with Jesus. This is intimacy with Christ. The sufferings of Christ are not the sorrows typically endured by mankind; they are the afflictions of love. They bring us closer to Jesus. We learn how precious is the gift of woundedness.

Let's pray: Father, I see You have had no other purpose in my life but to manifest through me the nature of Your Son. I receive the gift of woundedness. In response, in surrender to Christ, I render myself an offering for those You've used to crush me. May the fragrance of my worship remind You of Jesus, and may You forgive, sprinkle and cleanse the world around me.





Adapted from Francis Frangipane's book, "The Power of One Christlike Life" available at www.arrowbookstore.com.

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The Day the Lord Has Made


By Francis Frangipane

At any given moment there exists, at the doorway to the future, two possible realities. The first realm is a darkened world full of the consequences of sin. Its ongoing rebellion toward God, coupled with the unredeemed events of the past, makes this reality a living extension of hell. Here, conflicts escalate into wars and become more devastating; in this infected world, morality degrades into depravity. Yes, and among those who would seek to make a difference, the grip of fear immobilizes their actions. It is of this demonically manipulated world that the Scripture tells us to walk circumspectly for "the days are evil" (Eph. 5:16).

Yet, there is another reality, a different "day," that is also accessible to mankind. This transcendent realm is the "prayed for" version of the first reality. It, too, stands ready to reveal itself. The distresses of life are mostly the same but the outcomes are different. This realm is full of miracles, heavenly reversals of evil plots, and divine intervention. Here, sin is confronted, demonic strongholds toppled, and iniquity is redeemed by the power of Christ. The enemy, who came in one way, flees seven ways in the brightness of this unfolding reality. Scripture has a name for this realm as well. It is called "the day which the Lord has made," and we cannot help but to "rejoice and be glad in it" (Ps. 118:24).

Since time began, both of these realities have always existed. The Scriptures bear witness to numerous occasions when people have cried out to God and found the Almighty a willing ally in transforming their culture. When the Israelites humbled themselves, repented and prayed, and sought again the face of God, the Lord intervened, restored their land, and scattered their enemies.

Yet, this promise was not for Israel only. Consider also the ancient Ninevites. When they humbled themselves and prayed, the day of mercy dawned upon them as well. In just three days, their entire society went from a people cursed to a people revived, prosperous and blessed. The key that unlocked the transcendent day was their attitude toward God.

Recent Elections
I'm talking about walking into either of two realities, and I am talking to those evangelical Christians who may be discouraged by the outcome of recent elections in America. My friends, let me remind you: the future of our nation is not determined by an election, but by the faith of the elect. If we continue to pursue God, humble ourselves, and persevere in our intercession, God can turn this nation toward Him in remarkable and powerful ways.

Yet, let me qualify my observation that Christians may be discouraged. I should have said, "A number of white Christians are depressed." It would be wrong to say whites were disappointed due to racial reasons (many would have voted for a man of color like Alan Keyes). Their concerns were due to the pro-choice stand of Barack Obama. Yet, the fact is, president-elect Obama's victory has filled many African Americans with a profound sense of joy. Indeed, the election of a black president by a majority of Americans from all backgrounds says that the American dream is coming to pass.

This dream is embodied in our national Pledge of Allegiance. Remember, our allegiance is not merely to the flag but for the "republic for which it stands." We are stating our commitment to this amazing vision, that America would truly become "one Nation under God, indivisible, with Liberty and Justice for all."

That succinctly worded pledge is a commitment to seeing America in revival! Yes, we must still fight for liberty and justice for the unborn, but let us remember this breakthrough of racial healing has long been on the heart of God. Hope is rising for many who were bound by hopelessness. Although there will always be extremists and racists on both sides of the cultural divide, we are at a new beginning in America.

The fact is, regardless of who was elected president, the problems facing America are staggering. Threats of economic collapse, conflicts around the world, plus the possibility of a new cold war all await the president-elect. We must pray aggressively about these major issues.

So, my appeal is that we not be unbelieving as this new day unfolds. For the outcome of this day is determined by how the church responds. Let us, therefore, lift our eyes to the possibilities of God. We have a great opportunity to stand in the gap and intercede for our new president. If we stay the course, we will enter the day the Lord has made, and breakthroughs previously unimaginable will come.

Many Questions
I know that what I am presenting will offend the political and even moral sensibilities of some of my friends. Yet the path that leads to life is narrow, and I am presenting to you the response that Christ has offered me: I rejoice with my brethren of color and choose to be an intercessor, not just a critic for the new president.

Many will ask, What about Obama's staunch pro-choice voting record?

Yes, this grieves me as well. Yet, I was a Christian for several years before the Holy Spirit revealed to me the horror of abortion. It happened in a moment. Perhaps someone was praying for me, but God touched my heart and I saw it for what it was. Likewise, I believe God can get through to our new president. Let's take faith that Jesus Christ could lift president Obama's consciousness to the "pay grade" where abortion becomes reprehensible to him.

Let me also say that America did not suddenly turn liberal; I believe the majority of Americans in our nation are still right of center. Even in California, voters banned gay marriage. Democrats won because they fielded many candidates that were not liberal but moderates and centrists. They drew upon the discouraged independent and moderate Republican voters, people who felt betrayed or at least let down by the Republican leadership.

What about Israel? Will the new president turn against the Jews?

The first cabinet position chosen by president-elect Obama was given to Rahm Emanuel. Emanuel is a hard charger, very clever Chicago politician. While partisan, he also is more a centrist rather than a left-wing extremist. What you may not have known about him is that he is Jewish. His father immigrated to America from Jerusalem and was a former member of the Irgun, a militant Zionist group active in the British Mandate of Palestine between 1931 and 1948. There is no guarantee that Emanuel will defend Israel, but for those of us who see the possibilities created by divine influence, it is not hard to pray for continued support of Israel by America. I might be wrong, but I do not believe Rahm Emanuel, whose family is very active in their Chicago synagogue, would abandon the Jews or Jerusalem. I think we can pray with confidence that his counsel as chief of staff would be to stand with Israel during these difficult times.

Both Wings
You have heard me say many times that I believe the great eagle spoken of in Revelation 12 is possibly a prophetic reference to the United States. The fact is, the eagle, which Scripture describes as a place of refuge and protection, needs both wings to fly: the right wing and the left wing. What if this election offers us the possibility to heal the divisions between races?

I'm not saying I agree politically or morally with everything that Barack Obama believes, but you'll remember that one of his initial plans was to bring God and religion into the Democratic Party. He fought the influences of those in his party who had rejected Christianity and he sought to make the Democratic Party a place where faith could exist and even flourish.

For those who fear we have elected the antichrist, let me remind you that the evidence that identifies the antichrist is that he dies from a wound in the head and then is miraculously raised to life (see Rev. 13). Until such a sign exists, we should pray for our leaders with confidence.

I do not believe this is a time to despair; it is time to pray with vision and with hope. If all you see is a "cloud the size of a man's hand," then pray with the faith of Elijah that a mighty outpouring of grace may fall and heal our nation. Let us give God the chance to bring into our world a blessed, prayed-for reality.

One last thing about Rahm Emanuel: His family chose the surname Emanuel when they were fighting for Israel's freedom in Palestine (see personal life: Rahm Emanuel - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia). The name Emanuel means, "God with us."

I am not naive to assume revival will come easy, but it will never come if we lose faith. Beloved, trust God. All things are possible, even seeing these very days transformed into the day the Lord has made.


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Please feel free to forward this message to others; acknowledging our web site would be kindly appreciated.

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Your interest in duplicating and re-sending this material is a joy to us. We only ask that you also provide website information for the Ministries of Francis Frangipane. The only exception is if the article is actually an excerpt from a book by another publisher. In this case they have asked that they be listed as the reference. Finally, any questions about the teachings of Francis Frangipane can be sent to info@frangipane.org. God bless your pursuit of His heart.