GN 1190 FD/MM/FM / FEAST 2007
By Maria 3616 9/06
Note: The content of this activity is mild‚ and could be suitable for JETTs and junior teens in part or in whole. We've marked it 16 and up because there is a portion of the meeting where everyone offers their personal words of love and praise to our Husband, and what everyone in your Home will say is of course not predetermined. Because of the theme of the evening‚ it's not likely that the personal words of love would be inappropriate for younger audiences, but that is up to your Home to decide. If you would prefer to keep this united meeting for those 16 and up, that's perfectly fine. If you'd like to include your junior teens, or even JETTs, you may do as the Lord leads you, provided your Home members realize that the young teens are attending and keep any love words to the Lord mild enough to be appropriate for them.
Organizers, here's some advice on how to prepare for this activity:
* This is an evening of reflection, and while this is not essential, you could have very soft instrumental music playing at certain points during the activity if you wish. It should be music without lyrics, so people aren't distracted by words, and it's very important that it's soft, meditative and peaceful, has a godly spirit, and is not distracting in any way. It's up to you to ask the Lord what would be best for your situation. If you decide to play music, please confirm your choice of music with the Lord so that it enhances the experience and doesn't detract from it in any way. It should be turned way down (so that it's completely inaudible) while the reader is reading Jesus' words, and then played very softly during the moments of reflection. At no time should it be loud or overbearing. (For some inspiring Family instrumentals‚ see the Feast DVD, and there are others on the audio section of the MO site.)
* Try to make the room comfortable, with soft lighting and comfortable seating arrangements.
* If you wish, you could serve a glass of wine, or a drink, or juice or light snack of some sort, something that your Home enjoys and that would add to the relaxation and enjoyment of the evening. You could set it out beforehand‚ so that everyone can be served and enjoy it while soft music plays and everyone relaxes and gets into the spirit of the evening. Or you could serve something at the end of the evening, which people can enjoy as they fellowship and wind down together. Some people might enjoy having a glass of wine to sip throughout the evening, and others might find it distracting. Feel free to do as the Lord leads you. You could specifically ask Him what would best enhance the relaxation and experience, and wouldn't detract or distract from His beautiful words to us.
* Please have one or two people prepared to read the message from Jesus. They should be good readers, able to read well, clearly, and with emotion, and if possible should read the message ahead of time so that they're familiar with it.
(Begin with praise and prayer‚ and one or two songs. It's best if these songs can be sung by everyone present, even if you're not a real "musical" Home. The point is to lift your voices in praise to the Lord together. If necessary, you can play a song on CD and sing along with it.)
1. (Jesus:) Come in, My loves, come in! Welcome to the special chamber that I have prepared for our evening together. Take a seat, get comfortable, and take a load off. I know you've been working hard—even extra-hard lately, trying to get everything in order so that you could take some days away from your work and spend them with Me.
2. I'm thrilled about that‚ and I'm looking forward to having this extra time with you. It means a lot to Me. It makes Me so happy to see that you're willing to do this and that you've set everything up and gotten things in place so that you can do it. I'm going to make it very much worth your while. I'm going to make it unforgettable.
3. Tonight‚ to begin our time of retreat together, I've prepared a special place for you in the spiritual realm. Sit back, relax, take a deep breath, close your eyes, and take a look around with your spiritual eyes.
4. You're in a beautiful lounge, with plush couches and divans, dim ambient lighting, and simple but strikingly elegant décor. You can picture it however you like, visualizing yourself in a place that suits your tastes—that's one of the wonderful things about Heaven and the realm of the spirit—and even about Me—that I can be for you, and Heaven can be for you, what you want and need most.
5. Now some handsome hosts and pretty hostesses come in, and they serve you a glass of a newly created heavenly tonic. Just look at it for a moment. It's clear but has a touch of aquamarine marbled through it, swirling and yet never settling. This is the tonic of renewing and regenerating, and its color is a symbol of the newness that is born every time you spend quality time with Me and receive a personal touch of My love. Now smell it, inhale its aroma. Isn't that wonderful? Now sip it, slowly and deliberately, savoring every second of it.
6. Yes, My loves, this evening we'll settle down, slow down, and savor the moment. We'll talk and we'll reminisce and we'll think and dream. We'll reflect on our love, and we'll take a little time to meditate on our past, present and future together, and on all that our love has brought, brings, or will bring, to each of these. There won't be any ghosts appearing, but there are a whole lot of spirit helpers around, and some of you might experience a little glimpse of one of them or a touch from one of them—and it'll be a touch of My love through them.
7. So, are you comfortable? Are you relaxing? Are you letting the heavenly tonic of renewing and regenerating work its magic? Take another sip—take as many sips as you want and need, because the supply is limitless. Breathe in the aroma of the beauty of your spiritual surroundings, and breathe out the thoughts and cares of the day and the week and of life and living. (Pause for deep breaths.) There. That's more like it.
8. Now we're ready to start a little trip down memory lane. That's always a nice thing for lovers to enjoy together. We've shared a lot of life and a lot of love together, whether you've known Me for a year or ten or twenty or fifty. We've enjoyed some wonderful and beautiful times together, haven't we? We've been through ups as well as downs—happy times and sad times‚ times of plenty and times of need. But whatever you've been through, I've been with you and we've done it together‚ and that's what matters most and means the most.
9. I'm going to bring up a few different scenarios, and as I do, pause and think and reflect on each one for a minute. Think of a time when we experienced that together, and thank and praise Me for it‚ and let Me help you to see and feel My love in it.
10. Maybe it'll be a time that stands out to you as having been a gift of My love; or maybe it'll be a time when you didn't see it so clearly before, but you can see it or believe it now; maybe it'll be a time you don't consciously remember—but your spirit does, and it retains the goodness and beauty of that time. It's going to be something a bit different for each one. Come with Me now on this little stroll through memories of our love and life together.
[Note: The reader should pause after each of these points and allow a minute or so for everyone to think and reflect.]
11. * Remember when we first met? Remember when you came to know Me and you opened your heart and life to Me and invited Me to share it with you? Some of you may have been too young to remember when you first accepted Me, but there have been times in your older years when you committed yourself to Me all over again, or "met" Me in a deep way. Those are experiences that mean a lot to Me; in fact, more than anything else, because it is in those moments that I am assured that My sacrifice of love in living and dying for you was worth every moment. I treasure the memory of your moments of decision, and when I think back to them, I feel the exhilaration all over again.
12. * Think about some of the times we've had alone together—times to rest, to talk, to share, to love. There have been quiet and peaceful times. There have been exciting and sexy times. There have been cozy and cuddly times. There have been times of stimulating conversation and even debate. There have been times when we experienced something far-out and spectacular. There have been times when we didn't say or do anything in particular, but just enjoyed being together. You've been a wonderful partner to Me, and I've loved every minute of it, and I love thinking back on the good times now.
13. * Think about a time, or times, when things were rough and rocky. Think about the difference between the despair or discouragement you felt while in the thick of it; and then about the victory and joy and satisfaction when you pulled out of it, when I came through and changed things, or when the burden or weight was taken from you.
14. Think about the answers to the earnest prayers of your heart for change, for relief, for deliverance, for supply. Meditate on the faith you gained through leaning on our love in those difficult times.
15. Praise Me for the ways I worked in your life and on your behalf‚ for how I brought you through‚ and for what I taught you through the experiences. And receive the praise and admiration that I have for you—for being willing to go through what you did, for being willing to fight, hang on, and keep trusting Me, even at times when you didn't see or feel My love as clearly as you would have liked.
16. Oh, My darling, these are memories that stir My heart and rekindle My passion for you, as I recall your willingness to fight‚ to suffer, to endure, because of your love for Me and your devotion to Me. Nothing could make Me love you more than I do already, but if anything could, it would be seeing your love and loyalty when you make the choices to yield to and accept the difficult things in your life, to trust Me through them, to fight when I say to fight, and to be what I want you to be.
17. * Now let's think about times when there was something you really wanted or needed, and that I gave you—maybe something that was essential for your Home and work or for your kids‚ but difficult to come by; or maybe just something that meant a lot to you personally, that you really wanted to have or to do‚ that wasn't a "must" but that I wanted to give you or do for you anyway.
18. It made Me so happy to give you those things that you wanted so much, and that you prayed and asked Me for. It made Me so happy to first of all see your faith and expectancy as you articulated your need or desire, then to give it to you and to see the look in your eye and to feel the joy in your heart as I placed My gift in your hand.
19. I love giving you gifts, My darling—and whether they're gifts that surprise you or gifts that you ask for‚ it's all a rush to Me and something I'll want to keep doing at every opportunity we're together.
20. Well, there's more to our experiences together beyond those few things, but that's something to get you started. Take some time over these next days to reflect on all that we've done together and all that we've shared together; all that I've done for you and all that I've given you; all the things you've experienced and all that you've gained through them. Let Me speak to you too about any things in your past that you don't understand, or that trouble you in any way, and let Me show you the good in them, so that we can look back on them together with joy and not with sorrow or regret.
21. Now, we move into the present. Let's think and talk about our love here, now, today. Let's look at our lives and all that we share and all that we are experiencing and doing now, all that we have to enjoy and appreciate and admire in each other.
22. Let Me start by telling you some of the things I love about you and the ways in which you make Me happy! Work with Me here. I'm talking to you as a body, as the One Wife Bride, but I'm also talking to you personally. So I want to tell you as the Bride some of the many things that I love about you, but then, if you'll pause and get quiet, I want to expound on that to each one personally—whispering in your heart and mind, with the personal touch that only I can give and that only you can understand.
[Note: Again, the reader would pause after each of these points and allow a minute or so for everyone to hear the Lord's whispers.]
23. * I love the way you praise Me and are grateful to Me. Seeing your heart filled with thankfulness, and your desire to praise Me for everything and anything that comes your way—even those things that are difficult—and hearing you put that appreciation for Me and My blessings into words, thrills My heart every single time I see and hear it—and I mean that.
24. * I love your dedication and the decisions you've made, and keep making every day, to do things My way, to follow My guidance, and to give more of yourself to Me. I know what goes into each decision, I know the tests and temptations that pull on you; and so, every time I see and hear words and deeds of commitment, devotion, and loyalty to Me, My heart swells and the flame of My admiration for you and My devotion to you is rekindled.
25. * I love your humility. I love how you are willing to show Me your love by going the distance to humble yourself before Me, being naked in spirit and holding back nothing from Me. I love it when you bare your heart and self to Me in full, when you love Me intimately as My bride‚ when you give Me all of yourself, surrendering, yielding, opening, receiving, imbibing, drinking, letting Me fill you. I love it when you let Me love you the way I want to. I love it when you let Me speak to you and through you. I love hearing your words of love‚ your utterances of desire, your cries of need. I love being one with you.
26. * I love how you let Me into your life. I love how our love isn't reserved just for the weekend, or the evening, or the morning, but is a part of your life every day and throughout the day. I love how you've learned to pray and bring My help and protection and strength into your life and work. I love how you've learned to hear from Me and receive My guidance, confirmation, and direction in the things you do. I love how you've learned to praise Me and to trust and believe that My hand is at work both when you are blessed with something good and when you are tested with something less than ideal.
27. I love seeing you wield each of the spiritual weapons I've entrusted to you, and I love seeing you learn more about them and try out new things with them. I love becoming more and more and more a part of your thoughts, your decisions, your actions, your life‚ and your love.
28. There is so much more that I love about you, and if I really got into expressing it, I could go on for a long, long time. I know, though‚ that you don't have that kind of time right now, so I'm keeping it to just a few minutes ... but I'd be thrilled to have more time during the next few days to tell you more about how much I love you and the things about you that are special and dear to Me. I can talk on that subject for as much time as you give Me. Give Me at least a little time over these coming days, won't you, to let Me express to you how much you mean to Me? I'd really love to do that.
29. Now, take a few moments of quiet and think about some of the things you love most about Me. Once you've thought about it a little, pick the one thing or the few things that stand out most right now, and then share them out loud.
30. Share your words of love to Me not only with Me, but with your loved ones around you. You don't need to go in a circle—you can say them spontaneously—and you don't need to concern yourself with whether you have one thing to say, or two, or five; just say them, share them, and let the words and praises of others be extensions of your words to Me as well.
[Note: Pause here for a moment of quiet, and then everyone speaks their words of love and praise to the Lord, one at a time, until the "stream" dies down. It would be good for each person just to say one to start with, so that everyone gets a chance, and then people can add more if they like.]
31. Another wonderful and beautiful part of your present, and a way in which I manifest My love for you, is through one another—through the beautiful friends and loves and mates whom you live and work with. Take a couple of minutes now to turn to someone beside you‚ put your arm around them or take their hand, and tell each other something that you appreciate and admire about each other, and how that quality or virtue is a manifestation of My love to you.
[Note: Pause again, to give everyone time to say something to a person near them.]
32. Don't we have a wonderful life together? You, My brides‚ and Me, are the most blessed of all in the universe. We have a love and closeness that is incomparable. You mean more to Me than you could possibly imagine—and knowing what you feel for Me and how much I mean to you, that's saying a lot.
33. Now, My darling, let's look toward our love in the future and ponder what awaits us. I don't mean just the distant future, although that's part of it. I also mean the much nearer future—like tomorrow! And the next week, month, and year.
34. We have a very special few days ahead of us right now—and that's something I'm looking forward to very much! I've already told you how I want us to take time during these days to meditate on our history together, and to speak to you about the things I love about you—and of course I'll also be happy to hear you tell Me what you love about Me, as often and as much as you want!
35. Something I'd also like to do for you during these three days is to give you personal promises about your personal future—both short-term and long-term. Can you promise Me that you'll take some time to listen for that and receive it? It might be one line‚ it might be a paragraph, or it might be pages‚ but take a little time one day to ask Me to speak to you with promises about your future.
36. You've heard it said that "the future is as bright as the promises of God," and that is true for you—for you as the Family and for each of you, My brides. Now let's look a little bit further into the future‚ into some of the big picture of what is ahead of you. As you ponder each of the things I share, remember to see this not only as "things that are happening" or "plans" or "goals‚" but to see it all as a part of our love and part of our marriage—because it surely is.
37. It is because you are My bride, because you have chosen to be humble, revolutionary, and wholly Mine, that I have given you the honor of being part of My Endtime Church, My chosen ones, and the ones whom I will use as the spearhead of the last great reaping of the Earth.
38. If you were not My New Church bride, if you were not humble and naked and weak and poor in spirit before Me, if you were not submitted and yielded and surrendered fully to Me, and if you were not committed to being dropped-out, radical, counter–worldly disciples of Me and My truth, then your future would be a very different one. It would be one of stagnation, stalemate, and suffocation in spirit. It would be one of failure, shame‚ and defeat. If you had not made drastic changes within these past years, if you had not repented of your strayings‚ then the ship of the Family—another analogy representing My Bride—would not have remained afloat, much less would she be moving forward‚ gaining territory, and entering the waters of her greatest fruitfulness yet.
39. The Family is now moving out into the deepest parts of the sea. You are getting into position to make the largest "catch" ever—ever in your history, and ever in the history of mankind. It is only through My love, through our intimacy, and through the power you receive as a result that you will pull this off.
40. This promise of greatness and grandeur is a promise to My Bride, My Honey, My Love—the one who gives herself fully to Me. You are part of that Bride, and as long as you remain with Me, loving Me, giving yourself to Me, you are guaranteed the fulfillment of these promises.
41. Let's not forget to look forward to the day when I will return—the day when I will rescue you, My darlings, out of a world that will have become almost unbearably cold and evil. I say "almost" because, although you will pass through days of Great Tribulation before I return, I will never suffer you to go through more than you can bear, and through our deep and intimate love I will sustain you with strength, with grace‚ with faith, and with courage, so that although the trials will be great, they will pale in comparison to the power of our love.
42. And when we are united in our great wedding feast, the Marriage Supper of the Lamb, you, My Bride, will come into your full rightful place with Me—honored before the universe, acknowledged before all of Heaven, welcomed into My Home, your Home, our Home, for eternity!—And that's where it starts really getting good, and where we will start to experience heavenly marital bliss to the full! And that's the part I'm saving as a surprise‚ so I'm not going to tell you more about it now, except that it's going to be wonderful in every way‚ that your every desire and My every desire will be fulfilled, that all our dreams will come true—and that won't even be the half of it!
43. So on that happy thought, let's wrap up our journey through the past, present, and future, and let's journey to bed and settle down for a good night's rest. I'll hold you and be with you through the night, and when you wake up tomorrow, the first thing you'll see will be My smiling face, and the first thing you'll hear will be My whispers of love—that's how I want it to be as we go into these days of communing and refreshing.
44. I love you, My love. Good night, sleep well, and dream of Me.
(Close with a song and some praise to the Lord, and hugs and kisses.)
Copyright © 2006 by the Family International
Art by Tamar