What Waving A Magic Wand Looks Like: ”Fire Tunnels”
Behold, all you who kindle a fire,
who equip yourselves with burning torches!
Walk by the light of your fire,
and by the torches that you have kindled!
This you have from my hand:
you shall lie down in torment.
Once upon a time there was a woman longing for a magic wand. She was unhappy and not living her best life now. Quite the opposite in fact, because in the space of six years her life had imploded. There had been the lingering illness and death of her mother, a stillborn son, her husband’s unfortunate career choice of Manufacturing Engineer in an Offshoring Economy (including three times downsized), her three moves, extreme difficulties with the children and a marriage threatening to fracture.
And there was a nervous break-down in the mix. And it was mine. My Fairy Godmother never came. I had an exhausted mind in an exhausted body and I was sifted by a ruthless Enemy. I persevered under all this turmoil, but I finally lost my mind, after struggling with anxiety and depression my whole life. The Wonderful Counselor pieced it all back, He wrapped me all broken about His neck, and carried me about while I looked at my worst fears, and He made me tell His truth about what I saw; and in this simple way I was healed: truth by truth. Piece by piece my mind was put back together. “Sanctify them in the truth; your word is truth.” I applied His Word to replace every lie — there are no other ways to repair a mind. The other ways are only band-aids. There is no such thing as a Happy Pill–therapies without the Gospel merely mask symptoms.
“Who among you fears the Lord and obeys the voice of his servant? Let him who walks in darkness and has no light trust in the name of the Lord and rely on his God.” (Isaiah 50:10)
So we had some trials. And they were affecting my children. I wanted it all better, ASAP. I wanted a fairy godmother with a magic wand.
And I am not disclosing these distresses of my life to gain sympathy, or worse, to play one of those bizarre one-upmanship games of ‘my hardships are worse than your hardships.’ I tell you this to underscore the irony of this demandingness on my part. The bitter truth is this: I was already in the Father’s “quick fix” mode! The complete destruction of my life as I knew it was proof that I was a pilgrim on the express route, through the Slough of Despond and the Valley of Humiliation, to the Celestial City.
As long as I stayed within His easy yoke, and did not veer away from the path he chose for me, I was being made new, day by day. Stay there too! if you are in a Fiery Trial, because if you bolt under the pain of refinement, your detour makes the journey longer. Taking off the yoke, and kindling your own fire with it–this is rebellious idolatry. There will be consequences.
And this is what the False Prophetic Movement promises: They say, ‘Come, let us make a fire tunnel, and make for ourselves some instant sanctification. Just pass through this fire, and all will be well with your soul.’ My friend Ian Vincent writes this on his wonderful blog:
“…many are being taught that they need to seek the fire of God to cleanse them, and they believe a supernatural fire will come and purify them. This is a subtle deception, for, whilst to seek for sanctification is the right thing to do, they are looking for the wrong solution; looking for a magical instant–fix answer for their sinful flesh, which by–passes their will and intelligence, and even faith. And it ends in defeat. To deny ourselves and take up our cross daily and follow Jesus is a perpetual walk of faith. Therefore, the metaphor of “fire” is the wrong one for sanctification.”
I was guilty of picking up that magic wand. I had to repent of using that counterfeit to His true process of sanctification, although at the time I was hardly aware of my sin. Now I see my hideous presumption: I assumed safety while participating with others who were offering Strange Fire before the Lord– because unlike the others laughing gleefully, I hated it. From its inception in the Toronto Blessing, I saw its falseness. So I thought I had an “out”, from responsibility, because from the start, I saw its wickedness, and was just waiting for my husband to see it too, and agree that it was time to get out. But this “waiting” was a cover for things in me I didn’t really understand and acknowledge until now.
I was being lured to this Strange Fire by this secret hope, that my nightmare could soon be all over if some anointed person just prayed the right prayer over me. Secretly, I longed for a “poof” of smoke, and all the badness would vanish. So it was me, the Scoffer, who pushed my bewildered children through that Fire Tunnel, when the evangelists from Iris Ministries came promising Instant Glory with Him. Though none of my family ever, thanks be to God, ‘manifested’. I think our loving Father knows just how much demonic oppression a poor soul can take! My husband hated all that outward show. I was the one who passed my children through that idolatrous fire.
I think of this now with great sorrow, and anguish! That I could have ever doubted in the inward work the Father was doing in me, with the true refining fire of my Very Present Afflictions. Child of God, He makes everything beautiful in his time!
Some practioners of the False Prophtic say this, ‘One minute in worship is better than an hour of teaching, for healing the body and soul.’ But that is a manipulation of worship, it is worship no longer high and lifted up, that only purposes to exalt the King of Kings and Lords of Lords, it has become degraded into a Song of Myself.
But any such use of worship, any such manipulation of it toward the self, is witchcraft.
There is a hideous description of it in Exodus; it happens this way: take precious gold that YHWH (the only “I Am”) intends to patiently refine through a wilderness journey, throw it into a self-kindled fire, and out of the flames comes a golden calf. Only idolatorus children who grow weary in waiting for the real thing will rise up and revel before it. Witness the Fire Tunnels being kindled near the broken altars of Bethel.
Worship isn’t a magic wand, and you cannot worship him with false fire. That kind of message is only a wicked lure our enemy uses to draw us away from the patient place of waiting before the One Who Is Beautiful; the One who makes all things beautiful, in His time.