At yesterday’s Gathering, I was led to share about an open heaven experience I had a few months ago. I’ve been having these experiences throughout more than forty years of following Jesus. I’ve never thought it unusual to meet God this way; in my earliest days as a Christian, I assumed the heavens open for all of us when we follow Jesus into the waters of baptism.
I have always assumed that my own open heaven experiences are typical of what can and does happen to other believers..
These encounters don’t necessarily give me new information about heaven. Usually, the Holy Spirit seems to use them to write the most basic of truths on my heart, truths any of us can glean by reading the Bible.
And so it was with the vision I saw a few weeks ago. I was walking around in heaven and saw what looked like piles of dirt by the side of the street. “What’s that doing here?” I wondered. Then someone explained. It was surplus grace, and it was in the way. God was looking for ways to dump it into the earth, but He was looking for the righr people to pour it out upon.
It would take me a few days to realize that what looked at first like dirt piles were in fact piles of spices that might be used in anointing oils.
In any case, this was surplus grace. but where and on whom could God pour it out?
It’s been a few weeks since I saw it, so I don’t recall how the understanding came, but I’ll never forget what it was. He’s looking for people who can and will pray the first and last lines of the Lord’s prayer with passion.
Start here: “Our Father in heaven, hallowed be Your name.” Get passionate about this line, so much so that its flavor permeates the rest of the prayer.
But end the prayer here; I’ll paraphrase, adding a few words of my own, as I’m sure we all should as we use these words of Jesus as a template to expand as our own prayer. “For your is the kingdom, the power, and the glory, for ever and ever, amen.”
To amplify the last words, “Lord, it’s Your kingdom, not mine. It’s Your power, not my gift mix or anointing, it’s Your glory.
Often I throw this line into my prayers: “Let none of these prayers I’m praying now be answered to gratify my ego.” But the real issue isn’t that we need to add another formality to a prayer that we often treat like a formality. The real issue is passion. Does anybody out there pray the first and the last lines of the Lord’s prayer with passion? Are any of us moved to tears as we cry out for His name to be held in reverence? And how many of us surrender our lives passionately to His kingdom, His power, and His glory?
These are the people on whom God will feel free to dump surplus grace. Perhaps by the time it gets to you or me, He may have already made it into a new anointing, an oil we’ve never experienced before, a new operation of the same Holy Spirit we’ve grown to love.
But all I know is that Jesus has paid with His blood for more grace than the church on earth has ever used. And for now, there is surplus grace in heaven. God is looking for those on whom He can pour it out. You and I can be among those who receive.
This isn’t rocket science. It’s very simple stuff, so simple, it’s easy to overlook. I’m submitting it to you so you can include yourself by faith, if you sense God calling you to do so.