ALL SPIRITUAL EXPERIENCES AND VIRTUES BEING
A MATTER OF GOD WORKING IN MAN
God’s grace is God given to us. The principle of the Christian life and of spiritual experiences is a matter of living by God. Never think that solving the problems of others is a spiritual experience. Spiritual experience is to live by God and to fellowship with God. Through these experiences, you derive strength from God to help others. In this way, God will come in and come out of us. When God is in us, and when He comes out through us, this is spiritual experience.
What is prayer? Prayer is to allow God to come into us and to allow Him to come out of us. We should not pray according to the mind, the memory, or our experiences. Instead we should allow the Spirit of God to operate, and we should pray according to His operation. What is faith? Faith is God coming into us and coming out of us. What is humility? What is love? Humility and love are also God coming into us and coming out of us. Both humility and love are God’s nature. When God is added into us, we will match God’s nature, and we will have humility and love.
LIVING ACCORDING TO THE GRACE OF GOD
What will you mothers do if your sons stir up your temper? What will you do if your husbands come home tonight with a big temper? Are you going to bear it by the grace of the Lord?
IN THE LORD
Many times, we say that Christians should live "by" the Lord. Actually, the Bible says that we should do things "in" the Lord. We do not rejoice "by" the Lord but "in" the Lord. Consider the example of riding on a bus. Do you come here riding "by" the bus or riding "in" the bus? If you come riding "by" the bus, you would be outside the bus trying your best to hold onto it, and if you were not careful, you would fall down. But if you come riding "in" the bus, then whether or not you hold onto it, and whether or not your hands let go, or you sit down or stand up, the bus will carry you here.
NO NEED FOR RESOLUTIONS AND STRUGGLING,
BUT MERELY FULFILLING THE CONDITION
FOR GRACE TO OPERATE
At one time, I was just the same as you are. When the children misbehaved, I wanted to lose my temper. I would pray, beseech the Lord, and trust in Him. However, in the end, I lost my temper just the same. It is natural for me to breathe. I breathe without being conscious of breathing. In the same way, as long as you are in the Lord, your victory will come in a spontaneous way. Suppose you are going to eat, and you pray, "Lord, help me to digest the food; I trust in you for my digestion." I am afraid the more you pray, the more you will not be able to digest your food; you have spent too much energy in this matter. Digestion is something spontaneous. When some sisters lose their temper with their husbands, the husbands may say "Praise the Lord" with clenched jaws. If the wives rebuke them some more, they may try to say "Praise the Lord" again. But sooner or later, they will not be able to hold back and will lose their temper with their wives also. Life is spontaneous; you cannot imitate life. Here is an orange tree. If you pray for it, it will bear oranges. If you do not pray for it, it will still bear oranges. This is because the life it has enables it to bear fruit. The tree does not bear fruit through resolutions and prayers. To be a Christian is a simple thing. When you were born, you measured a little over a foot. But now you are over five feet tall. When did you grow to this height? You do not know, for you do not bear the responsibility for your own growth. All you have to do is to fulfill the conditions for growth. Crucifixion is something that others execute upon you; you cannot crucify yourself. A man can commit suicide, but he cannot crucify himself. You can nail your right hand with your left hand, or you can nail your left hand with your right hand. But in the end you still cannot nail both hands by yourself. This is the reason that after twenty years you still have not been able to crucify yourself.
Hence, you do not have to worry about how much you have grown. All you have to take care of is hygiene, normal restrictions, exercise, and proper food. Spontaneously, you will grow. If you love God and fellowship with Him, this is all that is needed. Everything else is taken care of by God. You do not have to reckon, to beg, to crucify yourself, or even to trust. All you have to do is to praise. Is this not very simple?
(Messages Given During the Resumption of Watchman Nee's Ministry (2 volume set), Chapter 6, by Watchman Nee/Witness Lee)