Translated from Hebrew, “Servant.”
As I prepared to paint the final painting in the series of animals the Lord has had me paint, this is the name He put on my heart. Much to my surprise, the image He brought to mind over and over was the picture of an ox.
Honestly, I wasn’t very excited to paint an ox, as this image always calls to mind the Israelites rebellion in the desert as they worshipped a golden calf. But, as always, God took me on a journey to discover that before an ox was attributed to the false god baal, it was and is one of the faces of the living creatures before His throne and thus a manifestation of one of the faces of Christ!
So often we see the other faces of God depicted in many prophetic paintings: The Lion face of God, the Eagle face of God and even the Human face of God, but rarely the Ox face of God. Now why is the understanding of this face of God so needed right now? The Lord’s answer to this question was so much more timely than I could have imagined.
The Lion, Eagle, and Human face of God is so often more appealing because of the glory, majesty, and grace associated with them, but what is needed right now more than ever (and is sadly lacking in the Western world) is the revealing and manifestation of the servant heart of God. These are the ones who bear the cost and embrace the suffering and pain which comes with plowing.
In these days of upheaval and deep darkness, what I believe is desperately needed are those who will lay down their lives as servants to plow and prepare the way for Jesus’ second coming. His return is so much closer than we could imagine and this is the time to be equally yoked to Him as we push through the dirt and grime of everyday labor with Him. It’s not easy, but it’s worth it!
Without the strength of the ox, there would be no harvest. And this is indeed harvest time! Without the Lord’s ox anointing on us, we will have no harvest – no harvest that will last.
“Where no oxen are, the manger is clean; but much increase [comes] by the strength of the ox.” Proverbs 14:4
If we want harvest in these days, we will need to go low and plow, plow, plow until we see the breakthrough. And lest you be mistaken, this harvest will be messy. There will be brokenness, heartaches and dissensions as Jesus promises, but these can all be the seedbed for greater glory! Could it be the harvest is hidden in a mess? This process will not be for the faint-hearted, but for those willing to get their hands dirty and their feet wet!
As I painted this Ox face of God, I felt the Lord leading me to pray that the spirit of entitlement would be broken off myself and off of His church, especially in the Western world. So often we want the prophetic words that God has given us to be served to us on a platter, while all the time God is waiting for us to work hard, fight, fast, pray and exercise our faith muscles (especially when we cannot see the answer). We must be like the ox who doesn’t look for praise or recognition from men. Working with the Lord in the darkest of places will become our greatest fulfillment and joy!
Like the term used in the world of trade, called “Bull Marketing,” we must charge forward and go all in during this defining moment in history. If we do, we will see the great harvest of souls and Kingdom glory which we have longed to see! Get ready for the baptism of the ox anointing!