The following post is condensed from a video on Renewal Ministries’ YouTube channel.
It is important to keep the big picture in mind as we make our way through troubling times. We must see the larger picture the Lord has prepared so that we can effectively cooperate with Him. He seeks the attention of his Church.
Right now, if you watch the news and see all the trouble, anger, division, and disruption, it can feel like everything important is happening on the political and social levels.
No. The most significant thing happening on the globe is God’s action—what God is doing for and in the Church.
We can be responsible and pay attention to the news to the degree that we need to, but the Lord wants his people to see what He’s doing, hear what He’s saying, and cooperate with all our strength with what He’s calling us to do.
What is He calling us to do? Ralph Martin and I have reflected on this question on YouTube in light of Fr. Mike Scanlan’s prophecy from 1980 and Ralph’s prophecy from 1975. In a nutshell, Fr. Mike Scanlan, former president of the Franciscan University of Steubenville, shared his sense that the Lord is saying “get ready” to the Church. The last hundred or so years of blessings are coming to an end, to some degree, and God is doing something new and different. Fr. Mike felt the Lord saying, “What I have not accomplished in my blessings and gifts, I will accomplish by my judgment and my purification.”
The Church is in the midst of a redemptive discipline. God is a loving Father, and He disciplines those whom He loves. Right now, you can see our own infighting and battles and division, hatred, disqualifying one another. God is exposing the condition of the heart of many in the Church, because He wants us to see it so that we come to repentance.
Ralph Martin’s prophecy from 1975 in Rome gives us another look at what I think the Lord is showing us. Ralph felt the Lord saying, “Because I love you, I want to show you what I’m doing in the world today. I want to prepare you for what is to come. Days of darkness are coming on the world—days of tribulation. I will lead you into the desert. I will strip you of everything that you depend on now, so you depend just on me.” Part of what God is doing is a stripping. If God strips us of security, if God allows things to happen so that we have to depend on Him more radically, we don’t have to run from it. We need to lean into it. We need to understand that we’re in his hands; as Pope John Paul II said, “We are in the hands of Divine Providence.”
One afternoon I was at a conference sitting by myself in Eucharistic adoration, in the back of a crowd of about four-thousand people. At a certain point, it felt like the holy presence of God was in the room like a beautifully heavy blanket. Then I felt the Lord speak to me.
As He spoke, I trembled, and I wept and wept and wept. Jesus said, “Tell them. Tell my people to lay down their rage and anger and fear, especially their hatred for enemies. That’s not my heart. I don’t hate anyone. I need to teach my people, and I’m going to teach my people how to love those who hate them, so they can serve my purpose to save them.”
When the Lord throws the switch to reveal his glory to bring about this evangelization, it’s going to be something like the world has never seen. It’s in his plan. It’s in his purpose. It’s why he’s poured out the Spirit so dramatically. It’s essential for us not to be shaken, confused, or knocked off course.
Let’s check our hearts, minds, and eyes. Are our sights set on the Lord? Think about Isaiah, “Behold God is my salvation. I will trust. I will not be afraid, for the Lord is my strength and the Lord is my song, and He has become my salvation” (Is 12:2). Lift your eyes to the heavens. Let this characterize your life. God is with you. Let God tenderize your heart to love, forgive, draw near to, and have great compassion on a world that’s lost. Pray and ask God to give you his heart.
I don’t know how long all of us are going to live, but I do believe we’re going to see in our lifetime a great manifestation of the glory and majesty of Jesus Christ. We’re going to see a great revival that’s already started to percolate. It’s already begun to happen in different places in the world, and the Lord is positioning us. The question is, are you going to be in the center of his work, surrendered to Him, at peace, and running in his favor at this hour?