Failure, Tares and a Time in Hot Water

By Francis Frangipane

The Value of Brokenness
Up until the moment Christ enters our lives, surrounding our souls there exists a hard outer shell, a "survival nature," which protects us against life's harshest offenses. The shell is necessary while we are in the world, but becomes an enemy to our new life in Christ, where the nature of Christ becomes our shelter. Thus, as the shell of a seed, a nut or an egg must be broke before its inner life comes forth, so it is with us: the "shell" of our outer nature must also break in order to free the Spirit of Christ to arise in our hearts.

This need to be broken is recorded in Luke 20. Jesus Christ described Himself as the very cornerstone and source of life itself. Yet, as such, He also said that He was, "The stone which the builders rejected" (vs 17). We say we believe in Him, yet how we often reject the wisdom of His words when we build our lives! This self-sufficiency and self will is what must break before we can ever fulfill the will of God, which is Christlikeness. It is only because we are still unbroken that we trust the ways of men rather than God.

The Cup

By Francis Frangipane

When I first came to Christ, the Lord gave me a dream about my future. I thought that everything the Lord said was supposed to occur immediately; I didn't know of the work of preparation and dying to self, of learning patience and maintaining vision through testing that would occur before God's promise would find fulfillment. Consequently, I was filled with ambition. Ambition is the first motive that arises in the spiritually immature. I was like the disciples who, a few days after Jesus' resurrection, were already asking, "Lord, is it at this time You are restoring the kingdom" (Acts 1:6)?

Ambition is very deceptive. It can seem just like obedience, yet because we don't truly know the Lord, the voice we find ourselves obeying is not God's, but our own. Our vision can actually be from God, but our motive be self. Consequently, where there is ambition, James tells us there will soon emerge "disorder and every evil thing" (James 3:16). Why? Because we begin thinking we can accomplish the will of God through the strength of man. We are seeking a breakthrough; God wants to give us brokenness.