Edited from a spoken message
John W. Follette
Jesus is the head of the Church, His Body. All direction for this Body is to come from the Head. The Lord does not expect my hand to be my brain. Rather, He expects my hand to serve as my mind directs.
Thus, nothing should originate within the Body. However, there should be a receptivity within the Body to perform that which is directed from the Head. We forget this when we become overly concerned about this or that, and we begin to move about on our own.
This is one reason why the Church, the Body of Christ, is so feeble. It lacks life because it does not know how to live from the living head. Instead, it tries to produce what it feels the Head may want to do.
The program must originate with the Head. He only asks us to function. He clearly tells us that we are the members, not the head.
Now you are the body of Christ, and members in particular. I Corinthians 12:27
It takes us a long time to discover this, because we are so accustomed to directing from our own head, and our body doing it. But the Lord is saying to us, No, not this. Now you have become a particular member in My great body of which I am the head. All direction, all doings must originate with Me. He has to have us as a body through which He executes, lives, and moves.
What a burden would be lifted from us if only we could believe Him. We direct our own little traffic. How do we know how to do this? Because we have always done this. Sometimes the Lord has to do some very shocking things to get us out of this old groove of self direction.
Because we are not doing bad things, we feel justified in our attempting to be the Head. It takes a long time for the Lord to get us out of this, because we are geared to it.
My mother kept an album of pictures from when we were tiny tots, on up. When I went home to visit, we would get out this album and look at the pictures. I would say, Mom, I never looked like that. She would answer, Yes, you did.
Did I actually dress like that? There were the pictures to prove it. I look back in my spiritual life and say, Lord did I really do that? He said, Yes. Did I really think that? Yes. We will have gained a real victory when we are able to step out of ourselves; then look at ourselves, and laugh. No one wants to be laughed at, but you can laugh with them. It will save you a lot of pain. This is one of the first signs of maturity.
Along with this, is the idea of detachment. I was involved in the process of overcoming a difficulty that I did not feel accountable for. I said, Lord, this is none of my doings, and I want to get out of it. This is because we want to save our hides. No one seeks trouble, we will side step it, just as long as we can, until the Lord takes us by the ear and says, It is necessary for you to go through this difficulty.
Have you ever been involved in trouble that was not your fault, and you had to suffer with it?
Some years ago, while I was going through an awful trial, the Lord taught me this lesson which I will share with you. When a difficulty, or trial comes into your experience, it may last weeks, months, or several years, before it is consummated. When this happens, you become pressed, knowing you cannot get out from it.
Then the Lord came and showed me that when we become involved in a trial or a testing like this, it becomes possessive and we get under its power. While you are held there, two things will result. You will lose your sense of proportion ‑ the way you evaluate your situation, and you will lose your sense of values.
When you are involved like this; to make an escape, or to hurry to get through, will frustrate its purpose. Your sense of values is too shallow and you will even compromise, because you are not able to grasp the full value of the thing. The trouble has involved you so closely that you have no perception as to its real character because you are too involved in it.
This is what the Lord told me. He said, You are to learn detachment. Now, you are involved in Follette. You are involved in your conception of this situation, and you are moved by your reactions because it is affecting you. You will have to learn to gather yourself up and, by faith, step out of this whole thing until you feel that you are detached from it. When you come over here by Me, you will look at it from My side.
Right away, I will get an entirely new perspective, because I am no longer looking at it from within my own experience, I am looking at it from the perspective the Lord has concerning this trial or test. Now my perspective will be adjusted, and my senses of value will come back to what He has for me.
A parent, for instance, has a certain perception concerning his child which is right and good. But the child is a projection of the parent. The parent will have an entirely different sense concerning his child than a person who is absolutely detached. This person could really tell this parent several things, but he cannot because the parent will defend the child.
Flesh has never hated itself, and this child is a projection of your flesh. This is why a question of discipline is more clearly explained and helped by a dis‑interested person who sees differently than the parent. Our father and mother instinct will cover and smother a problem that needs to be dealt with. It takes quite a depth for the parent to say, Can you help me with this child?
So it is with us, the Lord must bring us to the place where we will accept detachment and begin to see our problem as He sees it.
Then He can bring about the necessary changes in our experience that will lead us to the spiritual wisdom and maturity that the Lord intended for us.