Saturday, March 3, 2018

Devotion #1 - A Voice In The Wilderness (Rev. Loran Helm)

Many of us will be gathering one week from today in Parker City, Indiana for "Waiting 2018",  a time in which we come before God in repentance and rest, and wait upon God for His leading and direction.  The Lord has put it in my heart to publish here a series of devotional thoughts in the next seven days as we prepare our hearts to wait upon Him, which I trust will be of benefit to all, whether you are able to attend the gathering or not.   Lord willing, these will come from some of the great prophetic voices of the past as well as the present, as this devotion is today.

Rev. Loran William Helm (1916-2006), who led the original "Waiting on God" meetings from the 1960's through early 2000's, wrote a stirring book entitled, A Voice in the Wilderness, in which he called upon God's people to deny self, take up the Cross of Christ, and let Christ lead us in our churches and in our lives (You can read a short biography of Rev. Helm here).  I believe that it's fair to say that millions have been impacted by his simple life of faith, and by the wisdom which he shared in his book, writings, and sermons.  Below are excerpts from A Voice in the Wilderness:

On Conviction of Sin
God’s convincing men of sin will really come to a congregation when all the followers in that church are faithful and obedient. Great conviction will fall when the entire body has paid the price…usually conviction does not fall severely upon sinners in a community until those of the church humble themselves, confess their faults to one another, get everything right with God, and do exactly what He wants them to do. Conviction upon the lost will many times be in proportion to the burden which the church carries, and a burden for the lost cannot be achieved: it is a gift from God to the broken, obedient heart.

This is the reason we have so little true conviction in a great number of our churches today. So much secret sin, hidden iniquity, disobedience, and self-assertion in the lives of professing Christians grieves the Holy Spirit. Bible doctrines are still being preached in many congregations, but the power of God to convince men of sin has been greatly limited.
We cannot convict anyone of sin, for conviction comes not to the mind, but to the heart; and only the Holy Spirit can convince a man’s heart of sin. We may have the proper theology and the correct ideas in our churches, but unless we as a people are one together in Christ Jesus through His love, the Holy Spirit is grieved; because of this, God seldom sends His convicting power. Without His divine power moving in their hearts, men will be totally unaware of the desperate lostness of their souls…

Now this is what you want to do all the time. Don’t place your attention on any difficulties at any time. Look only to Jesus through every circumstance. Keep your eyes fixed upon Him constantly. Maintain praise and adoration in your heart even when you don’t feel like it, when it is not easy to praise. We will never be able to work out a single situation ourselves anyway. Leave the working-out to God and simply keep your eyes on Jesus, who is the Answer to every need and every problem.

The Missing Link
(The) night I started toward God’s perfect will...My people were weeping, and I was trying to tell them that God wants us to be faithful and true. He doesn’t want us hot and then cold, up and then down. He wants us to be consistent, alive, radiant, rejoicing --- through every situation which we experience. He wants us to be overcomers.

I had discovered few Christians who had this victorious overcoming experience. I didn’t now the missing links in Christianity then; but God has let me discover one or two of them over the years. I learned that the missing link which connects us to a continuous life as an overcoming Christian is self-denial. We must learn to deny Self in a heart of trust; for then we move, through the leadership of the Holy Spirit, to obedience and the cross.

We in the church can sing, preach, pray, read scripture, go along with the religious program, and never once deny Self. Often, instead of depending on God to guide us, we plan a little of what we want to do, sing the songs we like to hear, and preach when we want the preaching to take place. We pretty much arrange activities which suit our taste and conform to our schedule. But, you see God wants all of the church’s activities at His direction. He wants to be all of the content of our program. Christ must have everything.

We must wait on Him until He sends, until He guides, until He reveals. We must wait on Him so that He can lead the church, lead the body, and become the true Head of His believing followers.

God Is Seeking A People...
God is seeking simply an obedient people. He is trying to find men and women who will do what He wants them to do; but He has had a difficult time finding them down through the ages. There are many who are willing to try to obey the written commandments as found in the scriptures; but this so subtly leads to a legalistic Christianity – a fulfilling of a minimum degree of service or adhering to a certain set of beliefs. God is seeking a people who will not only obey His written Word, but who will also actually walk with Him day by day, moment by moment, listening to and doing what the voice of the Holy Spirit says…

Relax Like A Little Child

...But we are not to seek for adventure, for miraculous events, or even to be led by the Holy Spirit.  We are simply to pour love back to God, honor Him, adore Him, and try to praise Him for His name's sake.  We are not to become tense or nervous about how to die out, how to be slain, how to be crucified, or how to obey.  We are to relax like a little child, remain right down at the bottom in brokenness, and simply trust God for all things.  

Taking Up Your Cross

You see, the need of our flesh is greater than we know.  It requires a heart firm in discipline to walk the path of self-denial under the cross.  Without self-denial after conversion, we never reach the cross.  And unless we take up a cross, we never truly become a disciple of Jesus, for He said in Luke 14:17, "Whosoever doth not bear his cross, and come after me, cannot be my disciple." 

The cross is not some trial, struggle, or tragic situation which may befall you.  The cross is an instrument of death upon which Self is crucified.  It is never forced upon me or you.  Each person must personally resolve in his heart to unalterably pursue the way of the cross, even as Jesus steadfastly set his face towards Jerusalem where his ignominious death awaited Him.  The cross is actually the life lived in accordance with God's perfect will, and we must volunteer to seek and do only God's will.

For information on "Waiting 2018", click here. (or email me at
To download a copy of A Voice In the Wilderness, click here.
To read the recap blog posts from this site of "Waiting 2017", click here.

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