My name is Tom. I’m just one amongst many who has this treasure within my earthen vessel. And I’m just learning and growing, and learning how to express that life through God’s ongoing presence and activity in relationship. Hang on, oftentimes the Spirit of God will lead me in directions that I have no idea. I just kind of, you know, they follow the Lamb wherever He goes. And so He has a tendency to take me on what my wife calls rabbit trails. And so I’ll just, I’ll just go on these rabbit trails.
I think one of the most important, significant – It kind of brings tears to my eyes right now, into my heart. – is having been raised in a real tough situation, and I know it was a setup, by the way, of a dad that was absent. He was in the war and had suffered a lot of rejection and difficulties and issues during his own life. His dad abandoned him and his three siblings, and so he grew up angry, troubled, and insecure. He went to war, World War II, he was a tail gunner in a B-24, during World War II. He flew two missions during D-day and then flew, I think, a sum total of about 34 missions over Germany. His squad leader was Jimmy Stewart, the actor. He saw a lot of combat.
So when he came back from war, and he married my mom, he carried a lot of the damage from that, which was very difficult for both my brother and I as we grew up. So he was, he was really abusive, psychologically and physically. We grew up with that, and we love him, you know, we’ve forgiven him and that kind of thing. But, he passed away here four years ago. But the first thing that God revealed to me was the fact that He was my father. That He loved me, He accepted me, and that all of my life, from the time I was born, even up to this present time was simply a setup. And that was really significant to me, you know, it just released all of the anger and, and those kinds of things. So, from that time forth, I wondered, well, why am I here? Why am I born? Who am I, you know.
I was on that journey, then finally the Lord – It’s interesting. – He brought a book to my life called, Who am I by Norman Grubb. I, in a sense, lost myself and all of the things that had been built into me from my developmental years, culture, all of these kinds of things. All of that stuff had to die at that particular time to figure out who I really was. So that just began to be stripped from me. I mean, it was like a circumcision, one after another, after another, after another until finally, I was just staying there, saying, “I am, but I don’t know who I am.” And that’s when the book by Norman Grubb came along. And his famous phrase was, “I realized that Christ lives in me as me and that He was giving myself back to me then. My true identity was then being shaped and formed in that union in that relationship with Him.” And so that was an initial experience in terms of identity.
But then there was something, there was a deeper place that I needed to go and I said, “Well, Lord, who am I? And why? What about these feelings? What about this?” The things that I was responding to, the emotions and the thoughts? And He said to me, “Well, you can have all kinds of thoughts. You can have responses and emotions, but there’s a deeper sense of yourself, and who you are.” I said, “Well, who is that?” He says, “Are you aware of your emotions?” Yes. “Are you aware of your thoughts?” He says, ‘Yeah, well go to Corinthians and there’s a scripture that says, ‘Who knows the thoughts of man except the spirit of man within him.’” And He says, “That’s the deeper sense of your identity. That’s the one who I’m in union with. That is who you really are.” I began to sense that well, okay, I had a specific thought, well, that wasn’t me. That was the things that I had, but I don’t have to identify with those particular thoughts and emotions. That was another aspect of learning my true identity.
Probably 20 some years ago, I had a real difficult experience. Well, I’ll be honest with you, my wife left. She just had a breakdown. She said, “I married you for all the wrong reasons. I married my dad.” and out the door she left. I’ve got four kids and I’m thinking, Oh no, what am I going to do next? And that was the most difficult, deepest…(pauses to gather himself) Sorry about that. That was the most difficult time in my life because that was another stripping and it was the worst time. It was the worst time. It was like a death. It was uh, it was a real losing of myself at that particular time. Everything got flushed, it really did. Everything got flushed down the toilet, it just, everything that I considered sacred, you know. I thought I was doing all the right things, it got flushed.
I remember, it got so bad one day that I was downstairs and I was going to end my life. I had a shotgun in my mouth. I had a cell phone at that time, and it was sitting there and, and all of a sudden, my daughter calls and says, “Dad, I don’t know what you’re doing. But your grandchildren need you.” And then she hung up the phone. That was to me, my experience of Isaac. Offering up everything that you have, and who you are, on the altar, including your marriage, everything, all of the things in life that you consider to be most valuable. And well, that was a wake up call.
So I came up here [Dallas], and everything that I had, I gave away, I didn’t care. I said, “None of this matters to me anymore. Possessions, it doesn’t matter.” I mean, I could relate to Job, I think it was, who lost his family and then had a time of restoration that came back to him. Well, at that particular time, I would sit at the kitchen table or at a table here in our small little house. Then the Lord began to speak to me out of that death. He began to resurrect me out of that experience, and then caused a sense of ascension in Him into another, into other plans that He’d always had for my life.
So I’m writing all of these things down, and I can’t even believe these things myself, you know. He’s telling me these thoughts that are coming to me, “This is what I’m going to do. This is when I’m going to do them.” At the time, I couldn’t believe it, but I wrote it down. A couple of evenings later, I ended up having a series of visions and the one vision that I received was of the 22 Hebrew letters. I had no idea what they were. And over the course of time, I came to see that these, what would look like glyphs to me, were the Hebrew letters.
I had a background in Koine Greek, you know, I used to teach Koine Greek with some students, a few students. I used to read the New Testament in Koine, Greek, which was very filled with insight. But I had no idea what the Hebrew letters were. In the vision that I had, this might sound weird, but I was like flying in this chariot. I call it the Merkava, now – The divine chariot. And as I looked down, I saw this vast expanse of what used to be frozen ice, and then it was beginning to melt and then the water underneath it was melting because of the warmth of the sun. And as I looked forward, I saw this red and white flower that was coming from the heavenlies, all the way down into this water. And on this flower were written these 22 Hebrew letters. From that moment on, something was birthed inside of me.
I would meditate on what each and every one of these letters were. I would look at it and I would ponder them, and I pray about them. And then what would rise up within me would be this movement, this stirring of God inside of me to say, well, this is what I’m revealing to you. In other words, my words consist in power. So each and every letter was conveying to me a different facet of His movement, of His presence. And then He began to say, “Well, okay, look at a specific word that has been translated by translators in the Scriptures.” And He would say to me, “Okay, look at this particular word, because how it’s being translated and what I’m giving birth to inside of you are two different things.”
For example, the first word of the book of Genesis would be “Bereshit” and in that particular word, I began to…He said, “Okay, no, look at every letter now.” And all of a sudden it hit me. I thought I could feel the movement of his Spirit in each and every letter in a different capacity in a different mode. And I thought, Oh, my goodness, how it’s been translated and what it’s really conveying is two different things. And I’m thinking, Well, how far do I need to go in this Father? He says, “You need to keep going because I’m going to show you this.”
Okay. Well, what about Bereshit Bara Elohim? And He said, “Okay, take a look at those words.” And I thought, okay, Elohim is translated God. But He said, “They’re trying to put me in a box. Because Elohim is the process of My Divine working in you and in all things.” The first letter is the letter Alif, which is the unlimited power of God. The next letter is Lamed, which is an ox goad with the pictograph. That means, I’m directing My unlimited power organically active in you, in all things. And then let’s see, alif, lamed, hey. Hey is life; it’s universal life. So I start from alif again. So My power within you and in all things is being directed into universal life and Yod, which is existence in itself, our time space world. My power is being directed in Universal Life. And then the last letter is the final, Mem. He says, Well, that is My power and working as always, to bring you into completion, both externally and internally. It’s a double process of My working.
You can see! Are you going to put Me in a box and just say, I am God? I am more than what men have called me, theologically. I am He, I am the one. I am the unlimited one. The Alif, I am the First and the Last. And I am working to bring the whole thing into a final completion both externally and internally.
And bang, it clicked with me! I thought, well, He’s going to change everything from corruptible to incorruptible, including us and including all of creation, because all of creation is groaning and waiting for the unveiling of the Ben Elohim, the sons of God. I began to see everything that’s spoken of in the New Testament was encoded in these letters. And I thought, Oh, my gosh, You mean for all these years, I’ve studied all of this systematic theology and all of this stuff. And I said, “What do I do with that?” He said, “It’s got to go, it’s gotta go. Because I am who I am and I will be who I will be.” Ehyeh Asher Ehyeh. “That means that you cannot put me in a box.” And that’s the first thing that Moses wanted to do, was to be able to put God in a box and say, here He is. But God was not saying…He was saying, I am who I am, yes to some totality of My identity, but I will be who I will be to you, as you live life, because life is really, that’s where you’re gonna find Me, you will experience Me. And that’s why Jesus can say, “I’m the way and the truth, and the life.” It’s a realm of experience.
So God took me out of my head, and put me into my heart by His Spirit, through even just interpreting the letters of Elohim. This is how the letters have changed my life. Most if not all of the theology hung around me like an albatross and I had to actually be delivered from it, so that there was no substitute for me. But just the everyday ongoing experience of the presence of God, leading me and directing me through life and showing me Himself in life.
My first experience was actually a scripture from Zephaniah 3:9 that God began to speak to me. It says, “I’m going to bring forth the people of a pure language and a pure lip.” And I thought, Oh. And this is before the vision of the letters. He then began to bring other individuals to me that I began to look at and study historically, like Jacob Boehme, he was a German shoe cobbler back in the 16th century, and he had some of the same revelation when he wrote his signature, of all things. And another book called The Aurora. God was beginning to move outside of the scope of a limited shell of theological thinking, to bring his people into a new aspect of revelation and insight into the nature of His being and His existence that had been lost through the hard shell of theologians and being controlled by the leaders and the pastors, and the fathers, rather than trusting in the organic spontaneity of the presence of Alif being directed into our lives and into our existence. So I read his works, which was amazing to me. I thought, Wow, this is what I’m sensing. I’m sensing this fire inside of my heart turning, a fire of His love. Now then, should I keep going in this? “Yeah, here I want to show you another person.”
So he brought to me another person by the name of Dietrich Bonhoeffer, a Lutheran pastor that was imprisoned. He wrote his book, Letters and Papers from Prison, and he talks about speaking and learning a language that people can understand. And he says, if you talk to someone about what it means to repent, well, the ordinary person today doesn’t have a clue what the heck that means. And so he says he was sensing the Spirit of governance wooing him. He says that we need to develop a non-religious language that will convey the presence and the power of God’s Spirit in and through us and working with other people.
Some years later, I had the open vision and revelation of the 22 Hebrew letters and I thought, Oh my gosh, is this where You’re taking me? It was kind of like the journeys, the initial journeys up to the vision of the letters were a preparation, a stirring inside to bring me up to the point of realizing that hey, all of your theology, all of this stuff that you’ve been studying, all of this stuff here, you know, it just, it was there in your head, but there was no sense of the reality of My presence within you. So He had to strip me of all of that. And in my journey, I’ve had to be fearless in going into areas that people would be afraid to go into. Oh you know, you got to stay inside the “church doctrine,” you know. You’ve got to stay inside, within what the elders are teaching, you know. And I thought, Well, and the Lord’s telling me, “No, no. We need to move forward, we need to move forward. Follow Me wherever I’m leading you.”
It hasn’t been easy. It’s been difficult because I don’t argue doctrine. I would rather sit and listen to some elderly woman who’s 90 years old, get up and share something really relevant to her life than listening to a three hour dissertation on the doctrine of the Trinity. I would rather listen to someone who’s actually living the presence of God in their hearts, in their lives. That was part of my change and part of the direction that God took me to take me away from my mind, in my own human wisdom and theological understanding, into the wisdom of God. Which was completely different. Which comes from a beautiful place of unified love and oneness within His presence within our own hearts and lives.
Because deep down within us, is the life of God waiting to burst forth like a well with living water, rivers of living water, in which we can just experience and we can, we can look at, we can appreciate, we can sense the vitality of the life of God in everything. Our identity is hidden with Him, with Christ and God. So when Christ is revealed, then we’re revealed with Him in glory and doxa and excellence. It’s an ongoing revelation, it’s not static. So God has to continually bring forth the beauty of Jesus in us, in new facets and new revelation, and new insights.
This is what makes life fun. Because it doesn’t stop with just one revelation because God is infinite. Is He not? Is He not infinite? He is! And so He’s always going to alif lamed fey. He’s always going to lead us into the unlimited possibilities of the nature of His being, because as He is, so shall we be. That is an ongoing, active, non-static, meaning of walking with God. Because we become like Him. We walk with God because we’re no more. It’s beautiful. Who we were is no more because we’re walking with God into another dimension of His, His presence within us. And that’s obviously going to affect us.
So the image of God is not static, but it’s ongoing. It’s a revelation. It’s an experience. It’s a beautiful…It’s the Lewis and Clark deal, you know, we’re going to discover new lands. That’s why the Scripture says, I think it’s, I don’t know, it’s someplace in the Bible, in the New Testament it says, “that we might experience and see the unsearchable, unsearchable riches of Christ.” Well unsearchable is like, it’s kind of like you’re out in the middle of the ocean and you throw in a thing to find out how deep it is, and you can’t find the bottom. You can’t find the bottom to this thing, which is really cool for us because that makes our finite existence as touching the infinite, the infinite. That is the power of the Alif, of the unlimited presence and power of God within our lives, which each leads to unlimited possibilities.
You do what God tells you to do, you go where God’s life is, and you’ll never regret it. Because when it comes right down to it, you’re going to be known not by your theology, but by the tracks that you’re leaving of the life of God because you’ve walked in His shoes.