Sunday, December 30, 2012

Unworthy to eat at the King's Table?

2 Samuel 9:1-13  David asked, "Is there anyone left in Saul's family to whom I can show kindness for Jonathan's sake?"  (2)  Now, Saul's family had a servant whose name was Ziba. He was summoned to come to David. "Are you Ziba?" the king asked him. "Yes, I am," he answered.  (3)  David asked, "Is there someone left in Saul's family to whom I can show God's kindness?" "Jonathan has a son who is disabled," Ziba answered.  (4)  "Where is he?" the king asked. Ziba replied, "He is at the home of Machir, Ammiel's son, in Lo Debar."  (5)  So King David sent men to get him from the home of Ammiel's son Machir in Lo Debar.  (6)  When Mephibosheth (son of Jonathan and grandson of Saul) came to David, he quickly bowed down with his face touching the ground. "Mephibosheth!" David said to him. "Yes, sir," he answered.  (7)  "Don't be afraid," David told him, "I will certainly show you kindness for your father Jonathan's sake. I will give back to you all the land of your grandfather Saul, and you will always eat at my table."  (8)  Mephibosheth bowed down again and answered, "Who am I that you would look at a dead dog like me?"  (9)  Then the king called for Ziba, Saul's servant, and said to him, "I have given your master's grandson everything that belonged to Saul and his family.  (10)  You, your sons, and your servants should farm the land for him and harvest the crops so that your master's family will have food to eat. However, your master's grandson Mephibosheth will always eat at my table." (Ziba had 15 sons and 20 servants.)  (11)  Ziba responded, "I will do everything you've commanded, Your Majesty." From then on, Mephibosheth ate at David's table as one of the king's sons.  (12)  Mephibosheth had a young son whose name was Mica. Everyone who lived at Ziba's home became Mephibosheth's servant.  (13)  However, Mephibosheth, who was disabled, lived in Jerusalem. He always ate at the king's table.




King David took over the kingdom of Israel from the tyranny of King Saul. King Saul and his son Jonathan ( David's best friend.) died in battle. Years had passed and David wanted to show the mercy and kindness of the Lord to Jonathan's descendants. Ziba, the servant of King Saul knew that Jonathan's son Mephibosheth was still alive. Mephibosheth was one of the younger sons of Jonathan and was crippled.



The bible gives an explanation about Mephibosheth's crippled feet. 2 Samuel 4:4  In addition, Saul's son Jonathan had a son who was crippled. When the boy was five years old, the news about the death of Saul and Jonathan came from Jezreel. His nurse picked him up and fled to Gittaim. She was in a hurry when she left, and he fell from her arms and became disabled. His name was Mephibosheth.)

Mephibosheth lost  his father and grandfather on the same day, and he was only five years old! To make matters worse, on the same day he discovered the death of his father, he was physically changed forever. Mephibosheth's name meant son of shame. This young man had the worse string of bad circumstances. I  could only imagine what he thought about his life. He probably felt like a failure and disconnected with others.  He had to carry the shame of his grandfather's demise and the lost of family royalty. He probably felt unworthy and by society's thought an outcast.


King David did not care about Mephibosheth's past or family shame. He did not care about his crippled feet or the string of bad circumstances. He cared about honoring a covenant he had with Jonathan. He cared about showing redemption. By all rights, David should have had the remaining family wiped out , so they would not exact revenge on a later date. King Saul's family deserved to waddle in their shame, but David was not your typical king. David stood for something more. He was the foreshadow of Christ and His actions would represent the Messiah's.


David, like our Messiah, brought Mephibosheth in the Royal Palace and sat him at the King's table. Mephibosheth went from shame to a place of Honor. I like breaking things out. Look below at what David did and what Christ has done for us.





David's Example Vs. The Messiah's love towards us. 


1. David showed mercy to Saul's grandson. Jesus shows mercy to us even when we don't deserve it.
2. David adopted Mephibosheth into his family. Through Jesus we are adopted into the family of God.
3. David sought after Mephibosheth so he could show kindness. Jesus, through Holy Spirit, seeks after our hearts and desires to be with us.
4. David restored unto Mephibosheth what was lost to his family. Jesus restores us and gives us back what was intended for us at the beginning of time.
5. David showed compassion to one that was not worthy. Jesus showed compassion to us and redeems us by His action on the cross.
6. David brought Mephibosheth into his palace and private eating chambers. Only His family and other figures of honor were allowed to be in this place. Jesus brings us into his holy chambers and honors us. Only through His sacrifice can we be allowed to enter in.
7. David gave Mephibosheth a place of honor at his table. Jesus has given us a place of honor at his table as well. We can eat with the King every day.
8. David covered up Mephibosheth's shame when Mephibosheth was pushed under the table of honor. Jesus covers up our shame through his blood sacrifice.

What a  powerful story with Jesus in mind.  We are unworthy to eat at His table but our Lord forgives us, redeems us, restores us, and shows compassion to us anyway. What a powerful way to live in Him!!!


Tuesday, December 25, 2012

Living Sacrifices

Romans 12:1-3  Brothers and sisters, in view of all we have just shared about God's compassion, I encourage you to offer your bodies as living sacrifices, dedicated to God and pleasing to him. This kind of worship is appropriate for you.  (2)  Don't become like the people of this world. Instead, change the way you think. Then you will always be able to determine what God really wants-what is good, pleasing, and perfect.  (3)  Because of the kindness that God has shown me, I ask you not to think of yourselves more highly than you should. Instead, your thoughts should lead you to use good judgment based on what God has given each of you as believers.

Where are the God pleasers? Where are the Living Sacrifices before the Lord? Where are the people of God who follow His heart and not live for themselves? We live totally different than what the Lord calls us to live. In America, people aim for the nice house, greater riches, nice cars,and so forth. People of God move all over the country not by His direction or to serve other people; but to serve themselves. Many say, " Why can't we have it all? Why can't we have the nice home, outside of our budget, the fancy cars, and God too?" Well God is not a trophy that we put on a mantle. We can't have both if material things are more important to us than the things of God.  Sadly, this is the case. I have seen many Christians give up the dream of God for their lives and turn to the American dream.

Are we living contrary to the word of God? What was Jesus' example? We here T.V. preachers tell us we can have it all. However, where is that in the word of God? I know the Lord does not want us to be homeless or without our NEEDS being met. How far do we convince ourselves about our NEEDS VS. OUR WANTS? Now days both parents work so they can fulfill the American dream and put God in second place. What is more important? How should our finances be distributed out? What are we actually working for? When do we return to the word of God? When do we stop allowing the world to dictate our lives? According to God's word, what does being a living sacrifice mean?

In the Silence

Zechariah 2:8-13  This is what the LORD of Armies says: Afterwards, the Glory sent me to the nations who looted you. Whoever touches you touches the apple of his eye.  (9)  I'm going to shake my fist at the nations, and their own slaves will loot them. Then you will know that the LORD of Armies has sent me.  (10)  Sing for joy and rejoice, people of Zion. I'm going to come and live among you, declares the LORD.  (11)  On that day many nations will join the LORD and become my people. I will live among you. Then you will know that the LORD of Armies has sent me to you.  (12)  The LORD will claim Judah as his own in the holy land and will again choose Jerusalem.  (13)  "Everyone be silent in the presence of the LORD. He is waking up and setting out from his holy dwelling place."

I was in a foreign country. We were worshiping with fellow believers on a brisk, beautiful Sunday Morning. The breeze from the Indian Ocean would fight its way through the windows of this upper room. The Saints of God where worshiping with familiar songs and giving the Lord all they had. The worship team was right on and there was not a missed beat. I stood up at the front of the room. I often would turn myself at a 90 degree angle so I could see the whole congregation. I learned along time ago how to gauge the hearts by simply starring and listening to Holy Spirit.

Everyone seemed to be enjoying the worship time, but a nagging feeling would not leave me alone. My spirit kept groaning within. No one was doing anything wrong. No one was off in their own little world. Everyone was worshiping and calling on His name. However, Holy Spirit was telling me that something was wrong. He kept leading me to interrupt the worship service. He lead me to the verses above ,and I was shocked at what He wanted.

I was obedient and walked to the center of the room. I was nervous and a little afraid. I was the guest speaker to this church in the upper room. The guest speaker to a church which had John G. Lake in its history. This was one of His churches planted many years ago. What were they going to think of me? Sometimes being obedient to the Lord means not being the popular person. I had traveled thousands of miles to speak and encourage the people of God. This country was my Macedonian call. I was praying for them five years before I ever stepped one foot on their soil. Was I going to lose it all by comments? Yet, I had to be obedient. I could not shake the unshakeable.

I stood in the center of the room trembling before the Lord. I spoke up and said roughly the following, " The Holy Spirit says shut up. He says be quite in Him. He has heard your worship but He wants to teach you something new. He desires to show you something great in the Lord. " I read the scripture above and everyone became quite. I stood there in the center of the room crying out to the Lord with my eyes closed tight. All of the sudden; I heard the scuffling of benches being pushed back. I heard a unison of what appeared to be like a movement of some kind. I slowly opened my eyes and was amazed. Everyone in the congregation( all 200 of them) where on their knees crying out to the Lord. Holy Spirit had come liked He promised. There was a united weeping like I never heard before or since. I fell to my knees, and we worshiped in the silence for what seemed like hours. Everyone was changed that day and the rest of my stay was miraculous.

Sometimes we get taught up in the noise of worshiping. We have our instruments and voices making joyful praise, but there is something to be said in silence. In the Silence of the Lord, we are called to come. In the silence, we are asked to wait on our Lord. We are asked to wait on His glory and with humility bow before His greatness. In heaven, when there is silence. The Lord is stepping up from His throne, His train is filling the temple, and His majesty is shining throughout His Planet. There are times when Holy Spirit is saying, " Be silent in the Lord." because something great is happening. Maybe beyond our own understanding. Will we be obedient? Will we follow Holy Spirit's unction?

Right now, I worship Him and declare my undying love to His greatness. How about you?

Saturday, December 22, 2012

Vampires in the faith

Vampires are mythical beings who subsists by feeding on the life essence of others. They drain the life from others and leave their victims close to death. Vampires might be mythical in our reality but vampires in the faith are real entities which suck the life essence from those who follow the gospel.

There are several vampires in the faith which suck our God given life essence from us. It is important to know what they are in order to overcome them.

Vampires of the Faith:

1. Relational Vampires.  We have to be careful to not allow the wrong kind of relationships to stop us from serving the Lord.  2 Corinthians 6:14-15  Stop forming inappropriate relationships with unbelievers. Can right and wrong be partners? Can light have anything in common with darkness?  (15)  Can Christ agree with the devil? Can a believer share life with an unbeliever? How many believers get into relationships with unbelievers on the pretense that they can change the other person. Unless you have the power of God; I don't believe you could change anyone.  What you hang around the most is typically what you become.


2. Mammon Vampires.  These are vampires which fill our lives up with things and in return drain our time away from the Lord.  Matthew 6:22-24  "The eye is the lamp of the body. So if your eye is unclouded, your whole body will be full of light.  (23)  But if your eye is evil, your whole body will be full of darkness. If the light in you is darkness, how dark it will be!  (24)  "No one can serve two masters. He will hate the first master and love the second, or he will be devoted to the first and despise the second. You cannot serve God and wealth. If the enemy can get the believers to fill their lives up with things, then he knows there is nothing to worry about. A believer distracted is a believer without power.


3. Religious Vampires. Religious vampires deceive the believer into thinking they are ok in their faith. They suck dry the truth of the gospel out  and replace it with religious rhetoric. Religion can be a destructive force once bitten. We have to be careful from this vampire because it is the most deceptive. Matthew 23:2-6  "The scribes and the Pharisees teach with Moses' authority.  (3)  So be careful to do everything they tell you. But don't follow their example, because they don't practice what they preach.  (4)  They make loads that are hard to carry and lay them on the shoulders of the people. However, they are not willing to lift a finger to move them.  (5)  "They do everything to attract people's attention. They make their headbands large and the tassels on their shawls long.  (6)  They love the place of honor at dinners and the front seats in synagogues. Jesus warned us against such vampires because of the evil power behind them. Be careful not to get sucked in.


I am certain there are more vampires to speak about but these are main three in my opinion.  Be careful to not get bitten and allow these to suck your godly life from within you.





Saturday, December 15, 2012

How to fight Anger

James 1:19-25  Remember this, my dear brothers and sisters: Everyone should be quick to listen, slow to speak, and should not get angry easily.  (20)  An angry person doesn't do what God approves of.  

We get angry sometimes. We all allow circumstances to get the best of us sometimes, but the Lord desires liberty.This is just a simple devotion which I believe will help some of you as you read. The Bible is clear about controlling our anger before it reaches a point of disaster. Relationships are destroyed many times because our anger gets the best of us. Then our anger turns to bitterness, next to hate, and for some finally murder.


How to fight Anger:

1. Be quick to Listen.  Wisdom is the reward you get for a lifetime of listening when you'd have preferred to talk.    Doug Larson
Listening with an open heart can curb your anger. I have learned along time ago not everything needs my opinion nor my input. Become reserved and be quick to listen.

2.  Slow to Speak. 

“No behavior on our part is more self-centered than the demand to speak and the refusal to listen.”
Robert E. Fisher, Quick to Listen Slow to Speak

“Interruption is basically a self serving and egotistical at. It blatantly states What I have to say is more important than what you have to say.”
Robert E. Fisher, Quick to Listen Slow to Speak 


   Pro_14:3  Because of a stubborn fool's words a whip is lifted against him, but wise people are protected by their speech. 

Pro_18:7  A fool's mouth is his ruin. His lips are a trap to his soul. 



When you are slow to speak then your restraint is discovered. A person who talks much is not wise but foolish.

3.  Don't get angry easily. 

 Pro_29:11  A fool expresses all his emotions, but a wise person controls them. 




We are called to a place of self-control through the power of Christ.


 

Sunday, December 2, 2012

Why some Christians are going to Hell.....

 I have been reading a powerful book by Francis Chan called " Erasing Hell..." It stirred something within me about Christians going to hell. The four points below come from the stirring of  his book . I know the title of the Blog strikes up an interesting debate. Will Christians be going to hell along with those who have refused Jesus? The answer is not as complicated as you might think. Those who profess to be believers but don't live out their faith could very well find themselves in the pit of hell. So, why are some Christians going to Hell? The answer might surprise you.

Despite what popular pastors or teachers are saying now days. Hell is a real place. It is filled with tormenting fire and eternal pain. For most Christians, we see Hell as a place for those who don't go to church on Sundays or who don't own a bible. We even have an unwritten list of who gets in heaven and who gets into hell.

Heaven bound ( By the American church methodology)

1. If you go to church on Sundays then you are heaven bound.
2. If you read your bible at least once then you are heaven bound.
3. If you recite some scripture, even if it is a little wrong, then you must be heaven bound.
4. If the pastor shakes your hand after service then you must be heaven bound.
5. If you worship for more than an hour on any given day then you are heaven bound.
6. If you pray more than 5 minutes a day then you are heaven bound.
7. If you tell three people a week they are going to hell then you must be heaven bound for sure.

Hell Bound ( by the American church methodology)

1. If you are a prostitute then you are hell bound ( Even though as a christian male, he might look at porn from time to time. That is OK because Jesus has made him Holy. )
2. If you are a pedophile then you are hell bound even if you ask for forgiveness.
3. If you kill someone you are hell bound regardless of repentance.
4. If you don't come to church on Sundays then you are hell bound.
5. If you listen to country music then you're defiantly hell bound.
6. If you don't look Christian enough then you are hell bound.
7. If you don't pray like the pastor does then you are most likely going to hell.

I know some of the above sounds absurd but many Christians actually think this way. Many think  because they have said a rehearsed prayer that Hell is no longer on the table of consideration. Many think if they do good deeds or give to the local church that Hell is now a distant memory. We are free!!!!! Is this true? Do Christians ever have to worry about Hell? I believe the answer is yes and no.  Yes if you are doing the following and No, if you are not.

Top Four Reasons why Christians are going to Hell.

1. Talking about other people especially someone in the faith.

  a. Matthew 5:22  But I can guarantee that whoever is angry with another believer will answer for it in court. Whoever calls another believer an insulting name will answer for it in the highest court. Whoever calls another believer a fool will answer for it in hellfire.

 b. God's word is clear. If I am angry with a fellow believer then I will be judged for it one day. If I insult another believer, I will be judge more harshly. However, if I call another believer fool or worthless then I am in danger of eternal punishment in hell. How many times have Christians talk badly about others? When you and I talk wrongly and with injustice about one of God's children then we are in danger of hellfire and rightly so. You are God's child, but so are they. Some Christians are going to hell because they refuse to stop judging and gossiping about others. They are ensnared in a repetitious lifestyle of talking badly about others. May we all guard our hearts.

2. Doing works for the Lord without Spirit guiding,not having godly character or a relationship with Jesus.

 a.  Matthew 7:20-23  So you will know them by what they produce.  (21)  "Not everyone who says to me, 'Lord, Lord!' will enter the kingdom of heaven, but only the person who does what my Father in heaven wants.  (22)  Many will say to me on that day, 'Lord, Lord, didn't we prophesy in your name? Didn't we force out demons and do many miracles by the power and authority of your name?'  (23)  Then I will tell them publicly, 'I've never known you. Get away from me, you evil people.'


b. How many tel-evangelists seem to have the power of God but their character is far from the Lord's. Many do for God without ever knowing who God really is. You can have the biggest ministry in the world and see thousands come to Christ, but if your character does not match the character of God then you will find yourself in Hell one day. Is that harsh? Is that too strict? Does it make you think differently? It does me.


3. Many Christians have placed themselves in an elitist group. Only certain people from certain races or backgrounds can join their country club like church.  Those who believe this way will wake up one day with hell fire starring them in the face.


  a. Matthew 8:7-13  Jesus said to him, "I'll come to heal him."  (8)  The officer responded, "Sir, I don't deserve to have you come into my house. But just give a command, and my servant will be healed.  (9)  As you know, I'm in a chain of command and have soldiers at my command. I tell one of them, 'Go!' and he goes, and another, 'Come!' and he comes. I tell my servant, 'Do this!' and he does it."  (10)  Jesus was amazed when he heard this. He said to those who were following him, "I can guarantee this truth: I haven't found faith as great as this in anyone in Israel.  (11)  I can guarantee that many will come from all over the world. They will eat with Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob in the kingdom of heaven.  (12)  The citizens of that kingdom will be thrown outside into the darkness. People will cry and be in extreme pain there.  (13)  Jesus told the officer, "Go! What you believed will be done for you." And at that moment the servant was healed.

4.  The Luke warm Christian will soon discover the torments of Hell.  When a believer is just going though the motions or has no life of Christ within them, then their eternal judgement is still being written.

  a. Revelation 3:14-22  "To the messenger of the church in Laodicea, write: The amen, the witness who is faithful and true, the source of God's creation, says:  (15)  I know what you have done, that you are neither cold nor hot. I wish you were cold or hot.  (16)  But since you are lukewarm and not hot or cold, I'm going to spit you out of my mouth.  (17)  You say, 'I'm rich. I'm wealthy. I don't need anything.' Yet, you do not realize that you are miserable, pitiful, poor, blind, and naked.  (18)  I advise you: Buy gold purified in fire from me so that you may be rich. Buy white clothes from me. Wear them so that you may keep your shameful, naked body from showing. Buy ointment to put on your eyes so that you may see.  (19)  I correct and discipline everyone I love. Take this seriously, and change the way you think and act.  (20)  Look, I'm standing at the door and knocking. If anyone listens to my voice and opens the door, I'll come in and we'll eat together.  (21)  I will allow everyone who wins the victory to sit with me on my throne, as I have won the victory and have sat down with my Father on his throne.  (22)  Let the person who has ears listen to what the Spirit says to the churches."

  b. Lukewarm Christians have several traits. They don't walk in His power. Their character is shameful. They spend money unwisely. ( Church building funds and church events are better funded than missionaries or outreaches.) They are caught up in the comforts of the world. Does this sound like any Christians you may know? Just sit back and see how many come to a church feeding event and how many come to a church outreach event.  I wonder if we told the Lukewarm Christians that he or she will go to hell if they don't come to the outreach would more believers be at these kind of events? Just wondering, nonetheless you get the hint. Lukewarm Christians are easy to point out. They are the ones that only come on Sunday mornings and complain about how things use to be.

We have to look internally and make sure we are not falling into the same traps. Our salvation is only sure in one person, Jesus Christ. If we try to guarantee our salvation through our own merits then we will fail every time. We need our Savior more now than ever before.Salvation is in Christ alone not through our religious do's and don'ts. To die in Christ means to become more like Him.





Sunday, November 25, 2012

Writing the Future

Right now, I am fighting a cold which has left me almost speechless.  I am certain that my hoarse voice is a blessing to some. Nonetheless, I have the power in my finger tips to express what is on my heart and to place it within my blog.

I write often about looking to the future and making sure one leaves behind a legacy. It is important to me not because I am dying. ( Not that I know of anyway) I speak on this subject for two reasons. One is to remind myself of the importance of the future and leaving a legacy and two to get the "would be reader" to think a little about his or hers future and legacy.  I believe Jesus taught on this subject frequently. Science has even demonstrated a law which would back up this theory of mine. Sir Issac Newton's Third Law  of motion states.( Newton believed in God by the way) " To every action there is always an equal and opposite reaction: or the forces of two bodies on each other are always equal and are directed in opposite directions."  I know this refers to gravity and the moving around of objects;however, I believe God allows scientific discoveries to open the eyes to the unbelievers. Newton's third law means that all forces are interactions between two or more different bodies,and that there is no such thing as a unidirectional force or a force that acts on only one body. 

This thought gives precedence to John Donne's thoughts on " No man is an island..." 

"All mankind is of one author, and is one volume; when one man dies, one chapter is not torn out of the book, but translated into a better language; and every chapter must be so translated...As therefore the bell that rings to a sermon, calls not upon the preacher only, but upon the congregation to come: so this bell calls us all: but how much more me, who am brought so near the door by this sickness....No man is an island, entire of itself...any man's death diminishes me, because I am involved in mankind; and therefore never send to know for whom the bell tolls; it tolls for thee."
John Donne (1572-1631). Devotions Upon Emergent Occasions, Meditation XVII

John Donne said that he was involved in mankind. He had an investment in mankind. There was someone much greater who also had an investment in mankind. His passion for us has never been matched and commands attention from the human race to take notice. His name was and is Jesus. His love is beyond this world and give credence to His investment into mankind.

 Romans 8:37-39  The one who loves us gives us an overwhelming victory in all these difficulties.  (38)  I am convinced that nothing can ever separate us from God's love which Christ Jesus our Lord shows us. We can't be separated by death or life, by angels or rulers, by anything in the present or anything in the future, by forces  (39)  or powers in the world above or in the world below, or by anything else in creation.

Luke 19:10  Indeed, the Son of Man has come to seek and to save people who are lost."

The Savior of the world loved everyone so much that he was willing to die for all even those who think of themselves greater than he is. Those who convince themselves that their way of life is correct. Those who turn to their own wisdom and live selfish lives. Jesus thought about humanity more than He did for his own life.

There is more to life than your own personal happenings.  No man and I mean no man can be an island to himself. We have to interact with each other. We need each other. It is a spiritual and natural law.

Right now, you and I are writing the future. What we do or not do will have significant value for those who live after us. I have always been blessed to be a visionary or futurist in my life. Although, I have not always made good decisions. Sometimes, I have chosen to shed the thought of legacy because my selfishness got the best of me. Nonetheless, I can honestly say that 80% or more of my decision making has had a futuristic value in mind. I have prayed for my children's spouses since my children were babies. I have prayed for my grandchildren and great grandchildren since I was a teenager. I prayed for my future spouse when I was teenager even while I was dating girls in high school. Yes, I am strange that way or is that strange at all. I have confidence that my prayers to the great and almighty God will not come back void. My children will have God-fearing spouses who will serve Jesus. My grandchildren and their children and beyond will know this legacy of Christ. My God is not a force to reckon with. Hopefully one day, one of them will stumble upon this blog or read my personal journal.  Our life can not be just about the here and now. The decisions we make could hinder or help future generations. I wish young people would grasp this truth. In today's world, it is all about the "ME". Most people don't understand the significance of their individual life. NO YOUR LIFE IS NOT YOUR LIFE. NO YOU CAN'T DO WHATEVER YOU WANT WITHOUT CONSEQUENCE. I believe I have given a spiritual and natural law that disputes this thought.

How can someone change their view point to one of " Writing for the Future."? I believe I have some simple truths which could help.

1. Stop thinking selfishly. ( First you have to admit you are a selfish person.)
2. Except the fullness of what Christ has for you.
3. Be more of a giver than a receiver.
4. Step outside your front door ( Most people never see the world as it truly is because they step outside from their own selfish world. There is a big world that has some pretty big problems.)
5. Make decision through and with Christ about the present and the future.
6. Forgive yourself when you make the wrong decisions.
7. Always be cautious of your legacy for life is short and your legacy might only have a few years of shining.

We are always writing the future for generations that have yet to live. What will be your legacy? What will be your manifesto? What will you leave behind? Will you leave behind that you were a follower of God's word or corrupter of God's word?

Saturday, November 3, 2012

God doesn't care! Right?

Where was God during the Holocaust of WWII? Did He care about the millions of people who were slaughtered? Where was God during the genocide of the Sudanese? Did he care for all those people who lost their lives? Many lost their lives because they simply believed in the Living God. Why would God not care for His followers? Children dying daily at the refugee camps in South Sudan. Where is the King of Kings. Where was the Living God when two planes flew into the Twin towers located in New York city, New York? Over 5,000 people innocently lost their lives. What about the Tsunami of 2004? It killed over 200,000 people. What about the Tsunami in Japan? The Earthquake in Haiti. Hurricane Katrina in 2005? The huge tornado in Joplin, MO? Finally where was God when Hurricane Sandy hit the East Coast? Millions are still without power and proper living conditions. God doesn't care! Right? I mean how could He allow this to happen? He is a supposed to be a God of love.  This proves that God does not exist correct? or at the least He chooses not to involve Himself with our petty human matters.

All of these are great questions. One could possibly not argue them effectively. However, what about these Questions?

  1. Why do people believe in God when bad things happen? Then blame Him for the bad things.
  2. Why do people get angry when they feel like God is pushed on them but want God to intervene when disasters happen?
  3. Why is it that people don't want to follow Christ and His ways but they want Him to intervene when evil befalls so many?
  4. Why is nothing said about people who spend thousands of dollars on a stay at a luxury hotel while the rest of the world is in turmoil.?
  5. Why is it that all those people who blame God for bad things never lift one finger to help those who are in need? They never give any finances to support charities or surrender personal time to help a charity? If they do help, it is very little and the time given is a few hours at most. 
  6. Why do we blame God and not the Evil men and women who hurt people? Many countries in Africa are suffering famine, genocide, and other tragedies not because of the wrath of God. They suffer by the evil desires from men who are demonically possessed. 
It is easy to blame God for our problems. It makes us feel better for our own personal lack and inadequacies. Many blame God because to blame God means that He does not really exists. Therefore, they don't have follow His ways and live a godly life. It is a moral issue and a sin issue.

Some want God to be a dictator when it comes to horrendous crimes but a distant being when it comes to their personal lives. It is funny how many of these people called Christ's followers hypocrites but live in hypocrisy themselves. God is not a dictator. He is not going to force us to love Him and follow Him. He desires a relationship with us but one that is not a one way street.  Yes, the creator of  the known and unknown universe CHOOSES to let us CHOOSE Him or not. Now like any choice in the world. There are always consequences to our choices. Life with Christ means life eternal and life with hope. Life without Christ means life eternally separated from Him and his love. It means spending eternity hopeless and lifeless.

God is in the midst of our suffering. He has not forgotten us. He has not caused the pain but He can brings us through it.

You hear, O LORD, the desire of the afflicted; you encourage them, and you listen to their cry. (Psalm 10:17)


Psalms 118:5-6  I called upon the LORD in distress: the LORD answered me, and set me in a large place.  (6)  The LORD is on my side; I will not fear: what can man do unto me?

I will be glad and rejoice in your love, for you saw my affliction and knew the anguish of my soul. (Psalm 31:7)


For he has not despised or disdained the suffering of the afflicted one; he has not hidden his face from him but has listened to his cry for help. (Psalm 22:24)

Throughout all the tragedies mentioned above, the living God was and is there for all the hurting. He gives them all the same choice. They can choose to call upon His name for comfort or not.  The real enemy and cause for the evil in this world belongs to the prince and power of the air. His name is Satan. He is a deceiver and deceiving many he is. 

Ephesians 2:1-6  You were once dead because of your failures and sins.  (2)  You followed the ways of this present world and its spiritual ruler. This ruler continues to work in people who refuse to obey God.  (3)  All of us once lived among these people, and followed the desires of our corrupt nature. We did what our corrupt desires and thoughts wanted us to do. So, because of our nature, we deserved God's anger just like everyone else.  (4)  But God is rich in mercy because of his great love for us.  (5)  We were dead because of our failures, but he made us alive together with Christ. (It is God's kindness that saved you.)  (6)  God has brought us back to life together with Christ Jesus and has given us a position in heaven with him.
Sin and Satan cause more havoc in the world than any other natural disaster over the course of ten years. Why don't people blame the right person? Why don't people curse the devil when tragedies happens? Maybe they are not wanting to insult their master? Who knows. I am here to tell you that God cares. He cares for all those victims left in the aftermath of Hurricane Sandy. He cares for all those hurting and are in abusive relationships. He desires for each person to call upon His name with a sincere heart. He is waiting for the invitation or for the door to be opened. All you have to do is receive and know his infinite wisdom. He weeps with you all. Just trust in His holy Name.


Sunday, October 14, 2012

Carry Your Name

Galatians 3:26-28  You are all God's children by believing in Christ Jesus.  (27)  Clearly, all of you who were baptized in Christ's name have clothed yourselves with Christ.  (28)  There are neither Jews nor Greeks, slaves nor free people, males nor females. You are all the same in Christ Jesus.

Those who believe in the infinite Lord are now His children. We belong to His great name. The scripture says have clothed ourselves with Christ. We have His character. We have His passion, and we have  His desire to see all changed by His power. We should be carriers of His Name to the nations.

St. Bernard was a priest who ministered to the people of the ALPS. His passion was to see these people come to saving knowledge of Christ. For Forty years, he preached the gospel seeing many conversions and many miracles.

Since the ancient of times there was a path that crossed from the ALPS to the Valley of Aosta. During the winter months this path would be covered with several feet of snow. The journey was treacherous and life threatening. St. Bernard decided to build a monastery and a hospice at the highest point of path. ( 8,000 feet). A few years later, he created another hospice at a different point for the adventurous travels.  The Augustinian monks were left in charge of each place. During the heavy snowy months, the monks would venture out into the cold with their big and friendly dogs and rescue any travelers trapped in the snowy abyss. To this day, those dogs carry the name of the priest who thought more about his fellow man than he did himself. The St. Bernard breed of dogs still are used to this day for rescue and retrieval of many trapped in the treacherous storms of the ALPS. They are reminders to who St. Bernard was as a man of God for they carry his name.

What about you and I? Do we carry the name of Christ with the same type of dignity and love? We are carriers of His Name. Everything Jesus stood for. Everything Jesus was and is must rest upon his people. We carry inside of us the truth and the hope for all mankind. Carry HIM where ever you go. Carry HIM throughout your life and become a world changer.

Monday, October 8, 2012

I die

This is a trustworthy saying, if you die with him. You will live with him today. II Timothy 2:11

Woke up this morning hearing from Holy Spirit, "Johnny Mengarelli dies this morning to the things of this world."
Now I know this sounds crazy, but no one said I was sane. What does it mean to die? What does it mean to die with Christ?
I was posed with these questions this week. Am I dying to the worldly matters?  Am I laying down all for the cause of Christ?
It seems weird to think that in order to live one must die to self. One must die to world matters. One must let go of worldly passions and run after the heart of God. Only through death can a resurrection anew appear. 

When I die, spiritually, then He can breathe life in me. He can resurrect my old bones and set me up right again. The shame of the church today is that they don't know how to die. We need to die in order to find true life in Christ. What are you willing to die to? What are you willing to let go? In today's world we make excuses for our sins by calling it a natural anomaly. The sin nature is not the original design for mankind. Holiness is at the core of our existence. Death in the spiritual is the journey we must take in order to live righteously in the King.

So today I die and tomorrow I die and the next day I die in order to live in Him.  I die again and again until each time I am revived I become more and more like Him. I realize I have not begun to live until my death. My grave has been filled with the dirt of sin and temptation. My flesh has been wrapped in the binding garments. I can't get out until new life has come.  Today I Die...........

Sunday, September 30, 2012

Find Fault in Me!

2 Corinthians 6:3-13  We don't give people any opportunity to find fault with how we serve.  (4)  Instead, our lives demonstrate that we are God's servants. We have endured many things: suffering, distress, anxiety,  (5)  beatings, imprisonments, riots, hard work, sleepless nights, and lack of food.  (6)  People can see our purity, knowledge, patience, kindness, the Holy Spirit's presence in our lives, our sincere love,  (7)  truthfulness, and the presence of God's power. We demonstrate that we are God's servants  (8)  as we are praised and dishonored, as we are slandered and honored, and as we use what is right to attack what is wrong and to defend the truth. We are treated as dishonest although we are honest,  (9)  as unknown although we are well-known, as dying although, as you see, we go on living. We are punished, but we are not killed.  (10)  People think we are sad although we're always glad, that we're beggars although we make many people spiritually rich, that we have nothing although we possess everything.  (11)  We have been very open in speaking to you Corinthians. We have a place for you in our hearts.  (12)  We haven't cut you off. Your own emotions have cut you off from us.  (13)  I'm talking to you as I would talk to children. Treat us the same way we've treated you. Make a place for us in your hearts too.

Paul, the apostle of Jesus Christ, was demonstrating to the Corinthian Christians his godly character. He gave them a list of proofs to come against the fault finders towards his ministry. He basically said, " Go ahead, find fault in me!" You will not find much to shake a stick at."  Our character, as believers, should be the same. People are always going to try and find fault in you but they pretty much will have to make it up if you have godly character. I am not saying we are all perfect or with out any faults. I am saying that we should make it hard for others to find our faults. Our Character should be iron clad no matter what.

Paul's list of character traits and character examples is astounding.

  1.  Became God's Servants ( First key to having great character of God. Give yourself completely to Him.)
  2. Enduring much for the gospel. ( People with horrible or no character in God run away at the first sign of danger or ridicule.)
  3. Demonstration of purity ( Living a holy and uncompromising life is crucial to stopping people from finding fault in you.)
  4. Godly knowledge ( Knowledge of God's word comes through hours of study and sacrifice. Preaching his word is useless unless you have experienced it.)
  5. Patience ( Have you ever met a minister who could preach but didn't have the patience with any body. Bad character flaw)
  6. Kindness ( This is good one. Some Christian act holy at church but are Diva's to the rest of the world. They think the world owes them everything.)
  7. Holy Spirit's anointing ( People should see God's hand upon your life not because you said so.)
  8. Godly love ( Without His love we are just phony people pretending to be something we are not.)
  9. Truthfulness in God's message and in life ( Always and mean always tell the truth and speak the truth of His word even when it is not popular.)
  10. Power of God residing ( It is hard to find fault with someone when the power of God is evident on their lives.)
  11. Enduring ridicule and false accusations with poise. ( How you handle ridicule and accusations speaks a lot about your character.)
  12. Surrendering all for the people of God. ( Regardless if the people of God are mean to you or not never stop loving them and surrendering your life for them.)
The world desires to find fault in us, because it makes their sin more comfortable. We just have to make it hard for them to do so.  Character is a growing trait we must all have. We are commissioned to be more like Jesus. As we become more like Jesus then we could honestly say " Find fault in me."

Saturday, September 29, 2012

Fire of God

Hebrews 12:25-29  Be careful that you do not refuse to listen when God speaks. Your ancestors didn't escape when they refused to listen to God, who warned them on earth. We certainly won't escape if we turn away from God, who warns us from heaven.  (26)  When God spoke to your ancestors, his voice shook the earth. But now he has promised, "Once more I will shake not only the earth but also the sky."  (27)  The words once more show clearly that God will change what he has made. These are the things that can be shaken. Then only the things that cannot be shaken will remain.  (28)  Therefore, we must be thankful that we have a kingdom that cannot be shaken. Because we are thankful, we must serve God with fear and awe in a way that pleases him.  (29)  After all, our God is a destructive fire.

More than ever, we need the ever present fire of God to reign within our lives. We need the shakable God to pan our hearts for the purest gold. We stand on the edge of time's demise and eternity's determination. His fire can change us. His fire can burn out the strongholds within us. We can gather some truths from the above passage.

1. His Fire comes to willing hearts and to unwilling hearts.
2. The Key to obtaining His firery transformation is by listening to His voice.
3. His Fire shakes the shakeable and leaves behind the unshakable.
4. His Fire salitifies His awesomeness and our alligance to Him.
5. His Fire is destructive. Destructive enough to tare down the bondage of mankind. Destructive enough to empower the powerless.

What is this fire? Is it visible or tanigble? Is it even biblical?

In the Old Testament, the Fire was use to guide God's people to the next location. It was also a means of protection.

Exodus_13:21  By day the LORD went ahead of them in a column of smoke to lead them on their way. By night he went ahead of them in a column of fire to give them light so that they could travel by day or by night.




His Fire is meant to cleanse and reveal the depth of our hearts. His fire is meant to wash away all the barnacles of sin from our shipwrecked lives.  We need His fire!!!! We need it more now than ever before!!!!



Mal_3:2  But who will be able to endure the day he comes? Who will be able to survive on the day he appears? He is like a purifying fire and like a cleansing soap. 


His fire ignites our spirit again and gives us strength to endure the limits of our earthly host. It melts the impurities away until His heavenly gold is left behind. We become pure as His gold not the gold we can see in our realm.  His gold is way beyond what we could ever imagine.


We live in the last days where the fire of God is part of His Holy Spirit. His fire comes upon us as Holy Spirit baptizes. Either it burns us to ashes or sustains us like the three Hebrew men. Jesus comes and ministers through this fire and engulfs our hearts.

Matthew 3:10-12  The ax is now ready to cut the roots of the trees. Any tree that doesn't produce good fruit will be cut down and thrown into a fire.  (11)  I baptize you with water so that you will change the way you think and act. But the one who comes after me is more powerful than I. I am not worthy to remove his sandals. He will baptize you with the Holy Spirit and fire.  (12)  His winnowing shovel is in his hand, and he will clean up his threshing floor. He will gather his wheat into a barn, but he will burn the husks in a fire that can never be put out."

 The time is approaching for the winnowing shovel and on it's tip will come the fiery presence of the almighty. We are challenged with either excepting or denying. We should be people of God who walk in His spirit and Fire. Each step leaves behind a burning residue of  His Holy flames. What are you doing today? Are you leaving behind a burning residue of His greatness? Is the world going to be touched today by His fire in you?

Thursday, September 27, 2012

Slavery Around the World

Matthew 18:3-6  Then he said to them, "I can guarantee this truth: Unless you change and become like little children, you will never enter the kingdom of heaven.  (4)  Whoever becomes like this little child is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven.  (5)  And whoever welcomes a child like this in my name welcomes me.  (6)  "These little ones believe in me. It would be best for the person who causes one of them to lose faith to be drowned in the sea with a large stone hung around his neck. 

She came from the Philippines to the USA with the promise of being employed with a cleaning service. She had dreams of helping her family back home and experiencing the American ideal. She reaches the States and is immediately thrown into the underground of human trafficking. She is beaten, drugged, raped, sodomized, and made to feel hopeless. Her pimp arranges a time for her first clients. She gives her first trick to an excited john. Her innocence is stolen in one brief moment and will never be regained. Within weeks she goes from one trick to more than 25 tricks a day. Each time her soul sinks deeper and deeper into depression.  Her dreams are shattered and her hopes of helping her family fade away after each trick. She is a slave to the trade now and there is no way out. She is filled with drugs and alcohol to make the pain go away, and she has become a zombie to life and all hope is sucked out of her.

Believe it or not the above situation happens all over the United States and the world each day. Children, young women, and young men are exploited into the life of human trafficking. While we sit in our nice air conditioned homes and sip on our glass of ice tea; a young person has perform over 25 tricks in a day. These slaves come from all walks of life. Some were run aways. Some were lured in by promises of a better life and some were simply stolen from their families. This is real people!!!! It is happening in almost everyone country on the planet.

I write this blog in hopes to bring attention to a horrible tradegy happening to human beings all over the world. I hope you can use it to know how to pray and maybe help join an organization that is helping rescue victims from the sex trade. I have enclosed Stats about sex trafficking and I have also enclosed links to organizations that are helping rescue people from this evil. Please do something for these precious people. Pray, seek the face of God, and do something for them.


Stats from http://sctnow.org/contentpages.aspx?parentnavigationid=5827&viewcontentpageguid=29d295d1-5818-4e7a-bde1-f61690fa44a8

  • Child/Human Trafficking is one of the fastest growing crimes in the world. Child/ human trafficking is the world’s second largest criminal enterprise, after drugs. U.S. State Department

  • The global market of child trafficking at over $12 billion a year with over 1.2 million child victims. UNICEF

  • As many as 2.8 million children run away each year in the US. Within 48 hours of hitting the streets, one-third of these children are lured or recruited into the underground world of prostitution and pornography. The National Center for Missing and Exploited Children

  • The average age of entry for children victimized by the sex trade industry is 12 years. U.S. Department of Justice

  • Approximately 80% of human trafficking victims are women and girls and up to 50% are minors.  U.S. State Department

  • The average number of victims for non-incestuous pedophiles who molest girls is 20, for pedophiles who prefer boys 100! The Association For the Treatment of Sexual Abusers (ATSA)

  • 300,000 children in the U.S. are at risk every year for commercial sexual exploitation. U.S. Department of Justice

  • 600,000 – 800,000 people are bought and sold across international borders each year; 50% are children, most are female. The majority of these victims are forced into the commercial sex trade.  U.S. Department of State, 2004, Trafficking in Persons Report, Washington, D.C.

  • An estimated 14,500 to 17,500 foreign nationals are trafficked into the United States each year. The number of U.S. citizens trafficked within the country is even higher, with an estimated 200,000 American children at risk for trafficking into the sex industry. U.S. Department of Justice Report to Congress from Attorney General John Ashcroft on U.S. Government Efforts to Combat Trafficking in Persons

  • An average serial child molester may have as many as 400 victims in his lifetime. Child Sexual Abuse Prevention Study

  • Child pornography is one of the fastest growing crimes in the United States right now.  Nationally, there has been a 2500% increase in arrests in 10 years. FBI

  • The National Center for Missing and Exploited Children, which helps to identify and locate children in pornography photos and videos, says it’s staff reviewed more than 10.5 million images in 2009 alone.

  • Reports of exploited children grow every year, in 2009, the National Center of Missing and Exploited Children received more than 120,000 reports on its cyber tip line. In 2010, the number grew to over 160,000 with the vast majority being from child pornography. 

  • http://exoduscry.com/
  • http://www.onebyoneproject.org/
  • http://abolitioninternational.org/
  • http://www.polarisproject.org/

Monday, September 17, 2012

The State of Marriage

At the time of this writing, there have been heated debates about the state of marriage. Homosexuals are desiring to marry and are pushing to make it legal all across the American landscape. Many believers are fighting this agenda and are trying to make the union called marriage a political issue instead of a moral issue. Homosexual unions, although I disagree with them, are not destroying the state of marriage. The covenant of marriage was under attack and degrading way before the debate of homosexual unions. Covetousness, adultery, fornication, and many other sins are the cause of the degradation of marriage. Why are Christians focusing on one sin as the cause of the debacle of marriage? Why are we not fighting against all these other sins which are causing the sacred union of marriage to go to the crapper?

I believe the enemy is deceiving many believers today. If he can get us to focus on sins that WE THINK are more horrible than others then he has us bound. A sin is a sin. Yes sexual sins are stronger sins because of the physical bondage it puts the sinner into, but the same of blood of Jesus is needed for all sins.

1 Corinthians 6:9-11  Know ye not that the unrighteous shall not inherit the kingdom of God? Be not deceived: neither fornicators, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor effeminate, nor abusers of themselves with mankind,  (10)  Nor thieves, nor covetous, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor extortioners, shall inherit the kingdom of God.  (11)  And such were some of you: but ye are washed, but ye are sanctified, but ye are justified in the name of the Lord Jesus, and by the Spirit of our God.

1 Corinthians 6:15-20  Do you not know that your bodies are members of Christ? Then taking the members of Christ, shall I make them members of a harlot? Let it not be!  (16)  Or do you not know that he being joined to a harlot is one body? For He says, "The two shall be into one flesh." Gen. 2:24  (17)  But the one being joined to the Lord is one spirit.  (18)  Flee fornication. Every sin which a man may do is outside the body, but he doing fornication sins against his own body.  (19)  Or do you not know that your body is a sanctuary of the Holy Spirit in you, which you have from God, and you are not of yourselves?  (20)  You were bought with a price; then glorify God in your body, and in your spirit, which are of God.

I find it amazing to note that the Corinthian Christians had problems with their sexual activities. They were still mixing the pagan rituals with Christian beliefs. Paul declared these acts to be ungodly.  The Roman culture was lax on sexuality. Almost anything went in regards to sexual relations. It was a part of their pagan faith and was considered magical. I will not go in detail here but look up the information for yourself. ( http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sexuality_in_ancient_Rome). All forms of gross and ungodly sex is sinful and destroying the State of marriage. There are issues in the marriage today which are  making it less appealing to the world. Below is a list of destructive things in regards to the state of Marriage.

The Degrading Marriage.

1. Absence of a Father and Husband figure.
2. Lack of Husband and wife roles. ( Who wears the pants?)
3. Pornography among men and women.
4. Adultery and other types of fornication
5. Covetousness or greed
6. Financial stewardship or lack thereof.
7.Selfishness between both parties
8. Divorce
9. Lack of godly sexual relations.
10. Lack of godly love and commitment
11. Putting the children first
12. Lack of a godly center
13. Lack of understanding
14. Lack of forgiveness

And the list goes on and on. Homosexual unions are not causing the downfall of marriage between a man and woman. All of the above is, and it has been going on for years. The divorce rate among Christians is about 42% to 50% in the American culture. That is the same percentage of those who don't follow a faith. This figure has been growing each year as well. Among believers it should be ZERO! Some of the top three causes of marriage failures are money, sex, and communication. ( http://voices.yahoo.com/causes-marriage-failure-money-sex-communication-41609.html)

It is true that the state of marriage is under attack but by many different causes. As believers we should focus on them all and combat the nuisances of them all.

What is marriage anyway? The dictionary says the following.

mar·riage/╦łmarij/

Noun:
  1. The formal union of a man and a woman, typically recognized by law, by which they become husband and wife.
  2. A relationship between married people or the period for which it lasts
It is the union between a man and woman. It is meant to be a holy union for God should be at the center. The living God created the union called marriage. He had a purpose for it

Genesis 1:26-31  And God said, let Us make man in Our image, according to Our likeness; and let them rule over the fish of the sea, and over the birds of the heavens, and over the cattle, and over all the earth, and over all the creepers creeping on the earth.  (27)  And God created the man in His own image; in the image of God He created him. He created them male and female.  (28)  And God blessed them; and God said to them, Be fruitful and multiply, and fill the earth, and subdue it, and rule over the fish of the seas, and over birds of the heavens, and over all beasts creeping on the earth.  (29)  And God said, Behold, I have given you every plant seeding seed which is on the face of all the earth, and every tree in which is the fruit of a tree seeding seed; it shall be food for you.  (30)  And to every beast of the earth, and to all birds of the heavens, and to every creeper on the earth which has in it a living soul, every green plant is for food. And it was so.  (31)  And God saw everything that He had made and behold, it was very good. And there was evening, and there was morning the sixth day.
 

Genesis 2:18  And Jehovah God said, It is not good, the man being alone. I will make a helper suited to him.
Genesis 2:20-25  And the man called names to all the cattle, and to the birds of the heavens, and to every animal of the field. But no helper suited to him was found for a man.  (21)  And Jehovah God caused a deep sleep to fall on the man, and he slept. And He took one of his ribs, and closed up the flesh underneath.  (22)  And Jehovah God formed the rib which He had taken from the man into a woman, and brought her to the man.  (23)  And the man said, This now at last is bone from my bones, and flesh from my flesh. For this shall be called Woman, because this has been taken out of man.  (24)  Therefore, a man shall leave his father and his mother, and shall cleave to his wife and they shall become one flesh.  (25)  And they were both naked, the man and his wife, and they were not ashamed.


God intended for man and woman to come together in holy matrimony. He made woman special for man and man special for woman. Women and Men are different but designed to be two lovers who connect like a puzzle. Men are called to leave their parents and cling unto their wives. God created the connection of a husband and wife to be innocent even in their nakedness.  The bible says that the marriage bed is undefiled.

Hebrews 13:4  Marriage is honourable in all, and the bed undefiled: but whoremongers and adulterers God will judge.

 The Living God has even given each person a role he and she should play.

Ephesians 5:22-33  Wives, submit yourselves unto your own husbands, as unto the Lord.  (23)  For the husband is the head of the wife, even as Christ is the head of the church: and he is the saviour of the body.  (24)  Therefore as the church is subject unto Christ, so let the wives be to their own husbands in every thing.  (25)  Husbands, love your wives, even as Christ also loved the church, and gave himself for it;  (26)  That he might sanctify and cleanse it with the washing of water by the word,  (27)  That he might present it to himself a glorious church, not having spot, or wrinkle, or any such thing; but that it should be holy and without blemish.  (28)  So ought men to love their wives as their own bodies. He that loveth his wife loveth himself.  (29)  For no man ever yet hated his own flesh; but nourisheth and cherisheth it, even as the Lord the church:  (30)  For we are members of his body, of his flesh, and of his bones.  (31)  For this cause shall a man leave his father and mother, and shall be joined unto his wife, and they two shall be one flesh.  (32)  This is a great mystery: but I speak concerning Christ and the church.  (33)  Nevertheless let every one of you in particular so love his wife even as himself; and the wife see that she reverence her husband.

The State of marriage is failing because believers are not following the word of God. We are not becoming the faithful spouse we should be. We are not reaching out to our spouses and ministering to their hearts. We are a selfish and inconsiderate people.  It is easy to blame one group or one issue on the degradation of marriage but we have to stop and look deep within ourselves. We have to take off the blinders. Some governmental law or the lack thereof can not save or sink the state of marriage. Believers not fulfilling their God given roles is destroying the institution called marriage. What can we do to turn this around? How can a godly marriage be at the center of our society?

Saving the State of Marriage

1. Be the spouse you are called to be.
2. Fit in the role that God has designed for you.
3. Don't allow the junk of the world to enter into your marriage.
4. Keep the Living God at the center of your marriage and personal relationships.
5. Keep your marriage sacred and guard it with your life.
6. Love your spouse unconditionally and allow forgiveness to be the norm.
7. Don't allow your children to become your number one focus.
8. Keep the Romance alive and allow your marriage to grow in maturity.
9. Don't depend on the government or some corrupt law define your marriage. We know the truth and we know what God's word says.
10. Don't focus on one vagrant attacking your marriage but keep your eyes open for the many vagrants that come to do damage to your holy union.

It is time we fight back to save our marriages. It is time that we get  back to what defines a godly marriage. I don't need the government to tell me what marriage is. I know what God has made it to be. I will follow the WORD OF GOD not the WORD OF MEN or HEATHENS. What about you? What defines your marriage? What do you think the failure is in your marriage? Do you believe that the government defines your marriage? Do you think the current issues of today hurt your marriage? Are you willing to fight for your marriage? Is your spouse worth it? The choice is yours.
.

Monday, September 10, 2012

Psalm 91

 Psalms 91:1-16 

There are promises from our God that He desires to gives to us. Psalm 91 gives a clear explanation of God's promises for us. Below is a break down and explanation of each verse.

It is believed that this Psalm was one penned by Moses himself. Moses had a lot of  experience with God being his refuge and defender. God uses Moses to write this Psalm for all to learn from.

 (1)Whoever lives under the shelter of the Most High will remain in the shadow of the Almighty.

 The key to obtaining the promises of God comes from the simple act of obedience. Obedience to His words and obedience to His ways.We step out from His protection once sin becomes a dominate force in our lives. Sin has the means of destroying the goodness of God within us.

1 Corinthians 6:9-11  Or know ye not that the unrighteous shall not inherit the kingdom of God? Be not deceived: neither fornicators, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor effeminate, nor abusers of themselves with men,  (10)  nor thieves, nor covetous, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor extortioners, shall inherit the kingdom of God.  (11)  And such were some of you: but ye were washed, but ye were sanctified, but ye were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ, and in the Spirit of our God.
The bible is clear that those who walk constantly in these sins will not inherit the Kingdom of God and will find themselves in an eternal damnation. Why is this so hard for people to believe and understand? When we step outside of God's protection and walk into sin then the Shadow of His Almighty is removed. I know those believers of the LOVE camp don't like this statement; all I can say is read your bible a little better. It is clear that God's love never leaves us, but it is equally clear that we can leave it.

 (2)  I will say to the LORD, "You are my refuge and my fortress, my God in whom I trust." 

The basic fundamental truth for all believers is to put their whole trust in the Lord. God desires to be our refuge in time of trouble. He desires to be our fortress in times of distress. He desires to be right there in the midst of our circumstances.  I can look back over my life and see the faithfulness of God. He has taken care of my family many times and I am forever grateful. His hand of mercy has overshadowed me and all I had to do is simply put my trust in Him. Trust means devoting all to someone bigger than yourself. It means surrendering all to the living God. We can't fool God either. He knows the ones who truly trust in Him.

Nahum 1:7 The LORD is good, a strong hold in the day of trouble; and he knoweth them that trust in him. ”

We can't  fool the almighty. Going to church or saying you are a Christian does not constitute trust in the Almighty. Either you do or you don't. You will never understand how your God can be your refuge until you surrender your all to Him. Try it today. Take a circumstance that you are going through and simply put it in the Lord's hands. See what happens!

 (3)  He is the one who will rescue you from hunters' traps and from deadly plagues.  

The bible is very clear that we wrestle not against flesh and blood. We fight against demonic forces that we can't always see. We are fighting against the tempter who does not want to face that he has already lost the war. In this verse, we have the promise of rescue from hunter's traps and deadly plagues.  The word " rescue" is the word "natsal" in the Hebrew which means to snatch away. The Lord will snatch us away from the hands of the enemy. He is our protector.  What is He snatching us away from?  He is snatching us away from the enemies' snares in life. Those rabbit traps of life that get us caught in a box with a trap door. When we put Him first, His power begins to work on our behalf.  Sin truly has no dominion over us.

(4)  He will cover you with his feathers, and under his wings you will find refuge. His truth is your shield and armor.

Thomas Watson, a 17th century puritan preacher writes the following about verse 4.
 Christ's wings are both for healing and for hiding ( Matthew 4:2 ), for curing and securing us; the devil and his instruments would soon devour the servants of God, if he did not set an invincible guard about them, and cover them with the golden feathers of his protection. 

Like a mother hen who brings her chicks underneath, so does our God when we are in danger or need of protection. That word refuge means finding hope or security. It is a joy to feel the great protection from our Lord. Underneath His wings I find healing and renewal for my soul. His truth of promise is like a shield to me. His desire to fulfill His truth in my life is also my armor against the evil of this world. There is only one absolute truth, and it belongs to the maker of truth. As we live in a world that is constantly trying to redefine truth; we can rest in the arms of our living God who is the TRUTH. 

 (5)  You do not need to fear terrors of the night, arrows that fly during the day, 
 (6)  plagues that roam the dark, epidemics that strike at noon. 
 (7)  They will not come near you, even though a thousand may fall dead beside you or ten thousand at your right side.  
(8)  You only have to look with your eyes to see the punishment of wicked people. 

When we are nestled in the promises of God. When our heart beats for His , and we are in relationship with Him then one need not fear. We need not fear with what goes bump in the night.  The arrows of evil which fly over head become like trophies on our mantles of life. We overcome because He is our savior. We overcome because our God is near us and loves us. The enemy cannot come near us while we are in the Lord's care. Thousands will fall beside on the right or the left but we will be unharmed. This is the promise of the Lord. He desires to keep His promise through His people. All we have to do is believe. All we have to do is come unto Him.

 (9)  You, O LORD, are my refuge! You have made the Most High your home. 

The writing was trying to explain the greatness of our God. He said the Most High was his home. This means the universe beyond the universe is His home. He owns it all. There are millions upon millions of galaxies which make up the know universe. It is said that the universe is a living organism and it is in fact still growing. Our God owns it all. Our God lives outside of it and within it. He truly is our refuge.
 

(10)  No harm will come to you. No sickness will come near your house. 

 I might have to go through the fire like the three Hebrew men but I don't have to get hurt. God's promise is for no harm to come to us. His promise is for no sickness to come near our house. Moses and the people of Israel saw this take place many times. Jesus came to bring our complete healing which means cure.

1 Peter 2:21-25  For you were not called to this? For Christ also suffered on our behalf, leaving us an example, that you should follow His steps,  (22)  He who did no sin, nor was guile found in His mouth,  (23)  who when He was reviled did not revile in return. When He suffered, He did not threaten, but gave Himself up to Him who judges righteously.  (24)  He Himself bore our sins in His own body on the tree, that dying to sins, we might live to righteousness; by whose stripes you were healed.  (25)  For you were as sheep going astray, but now you are turned to the Shepherd and Overseer of your souls.


 (11)  He will put his angels in charge of you to protect you in all your ways.(12)  They will carry you in their hands so that you never hit your foot against a rock.

Another promise from our Lord is that He sends His infinite amount of Angels to protect us and defend us. What do we have to fear? Why do we allow fear to over take us? We have the Lord and his heavenly host on our side. This promise once again comes out of our  relationship with Him. He loves you and He love me. What a wonderful truth.
 

(13)  You will step on lions and cobras. You will trample young lions and snakes. 

We are promised to stomp the devil and his demons down to the ground. They have no power over you and I. The only power they have come from us.

(14)  Because you love me, I will rescue you. I will protect you because you know my name. 
 (15)  When you call to me, I will answer you. I will be with you when you are in trouble. I will save you and honor you.  
(16)  I will satisfy you with a long life. I will show you how I will save you.




This Psalm ends with a greater break down of the Lord's promises.

1. He loves us some much.
2. He rescues us.
3. He protects us by knowing Him deeply.
4. He answers us when we call.
5. He stands with us in time of trouble.
6. He saves us and lifts us up in honor above all wickedness.
7. He gives us a long life for trusting in him.
8. He shows us His greatness and His protection over our lives.


Without a doubt our God is full of promises . Each promise is for you and I. All we have to do is have a great a relationship with our father and trust in Him. It comes back down  to relationship. The key to unlocking His promises for us comes out of our relationship with the Almighty and being obedient to all His ways.

Monday, August 27, 2012

Prophetic Evangelism

We love to put titles or descriptive words on events or circumstances we endeavor in. There is nothing wrong with it until we start calling it Divine Truth. I want to submit a topic about Evangelism in this blog. I call it Prophetic Evangelism but you will not see these words arranged in the bible. However, I do feel you can see the process and performance of prophetic evangelism very clearly. So what is P.E.( Prophetic Evangelism for short.)? P.E. is simply the means of reaching out to the lost through a more led by the Spirit mentality.  There are many different types of evangelism but I feel P.E. is the most effective in today's world for the INDIVIDUAL BELIEVER.

Types of Evangelism ( Note: I am not saying these are bad or ungodly. I have personally used each type in my life.)

1. Event Evangelism: A church holds a revival, tent revival, or special open air meeting for the sole purpose of evangelism.
2. Outreach Evangelism: This is where a special need is provided for the community and people come to the church or mutual place.
3. One on One Evangelism: A believer simply witnesses to a friend, relative, or acquaintance the gospel.
4. Door to Door Evangelism: A group of believers blanket an area ( Usually an apartment complex) by going door to door within that community.
5. Acts of Kindness Evangelism: A group of believers go to an area and simply perform acts of kindness for willing hearts.
6. Street Evangelism: You guessed it! Some believers minister to passer-byes on a street side walk or local park.
7. Prophetic Evangelism: This is where an individual or group of believers have visions, dreams,  and Spirit's leading to a person or group of people for the sole purpose of evangelism.

I am not saying all the above besides P.E. are not spirit-led. If a church or group of believers feel led of the Lord to do any of these types of Evangelism then do them. However, ensure it is Holy Spirit's timing and purpose for that moment. I have done events just because I knew I needed to reach out or I wanted to grow my church. This is the wrong mentality to have. Unfortunately, it is the pressured mentality of the American Church. I'll save that topic for another blog.

All the above types of Evangelism are great ways to spread the word of God. God uses each one as directed by His Spirit. I wanted to focus on Prophetic Evangelism and how it works.

There are examples that we can glean from in God's word.

1. John 4 ( Jesus prophesied and was led of the spirit to the woman at the well)
2. Acts 10 ( Peter sees a vision and brings Holy Spirit to the gentiles)
3. Acts 14:7-11 ( Paul listens to Holy Spirit and see a person getting healed. The healing opens the door for ministry.)
4. Acts 16:6-11 ( Paul sees a vision of a Macedonian and is asked to come preach the gospel there. Holy Spirit leads him to that place but prevents him from going into Asia.)

There are many more examples and the above are great ones but I wanted to glean some insights from Philip's experience in Acts 8.

Acts 8:26-40  But an angel of the Lord spake unto Philip, saying, Arise, and go toward the south unto the way that goeth down from Jerusalem unto Gaza: the same is desert.  (27)  And he arose and went: and behold, a man of Ethiopia, a eunuch of great authority under Candace, queen of the Ethiopians, who was over all her treasure, who had come to Jerusalem to worship;  (28)  and he was returning and sitting in his chariot, and was reading the prophet Isaiah.  (29)  And the Spirit said unto Philip, Go near, and join thyself to this chariot.  (30)  And Philip ran to him, and heard him reading Isaiah the prophet, and said, Understandest thou what thou readest?  (31)  And he said, How can I, except some one shall guide me? And he besought Philip to come up and sit with him.  (32)  Now the passage of the Scripture which he was reading was this, He was led as a sheep to the slaughter; And as a lamb before his shearer is dumb, So he openeth not his mouth:  (33)  In his humiliation his judgment was taken away: His generation who shall declare? For his life is taken from the earth.  (34)  And the eunuch answered Philip, and said, I pray thee, of whom speaketh the prophet this? of himself, or of some other?  (35)  And Philip opened his mouth, and beginning from this Scripture, preached unto him Jesus.  (36)  And as they went on the way, they came unto a certain water; and the eunuch saith, Behold, here is water; what doth hinder me to be baptized?  (37)  And Philip said, If thou believest with all thy heart, thou mayest. And he answered and said, I believe that Jesus Christ is the Son of God.  (38)  And he commanded the chariot to stand still: and they both went down into the water, both Philip and the eunuch, and he baptized him.  (39)  And when they came up out of the water, the Spirit of the Lord caught away Philip; and the eunuch saw him no more, for he went on his way rejoicing.  (40)  But Philip was found at Azotus: and passing through he preached the gospel to all the cities, till he came to Caesarea.

Philip was prophetically given the direction for his next assignment. He follows Holy Spirit's lead and comes upon a Eunuch from Ethiopia. Next Holy Spirit tells Philip to go near to the Eunuch's chariot and join it. Finally Holy Spirit opens the mouth of Philip and uses him to preach the gospel to the Eunuch from Ethiopia.

Prophetic Evangelism allows the individual to tap into the Spirit voice of God and hear from heaven his or hers assignment. The good news is that you don't have to be a prophet or have a gift of prophesy to prophetically evangelize. It is for every believer. Philip was not a prophet, as in terms of an office, he was an evangelist and a deacon at his local church.

Recently, I tagged along with some folks ,from the church I currently attend, as they ventured out on an evangelist outreach. We were going to go to apartment complexes and give some lucky folks some gift cards. It was an act of Kindness Evangelistic outreach. Before we went, we had a time of prayer. During the time of prayer I kept seeing a vision of a Spanish family. I saw the dad with his facial hair, the mom sitting on the couch, and three children running around. The Lord spoke to me and said that we would give a gift card to them because they need it. It would be a testimony to them of his provision. Before we left to go on our adventure,  I tell my team mate about my vision. He in turn tells me about his vision of seeing a black woman with a grey shirt on. He really felt like God wanted to love on her. So with shared visions out in the open, we head off to our destinations. We ride around listening to Holy Spirit and stop at one of the Apartment complexes. We walk in and go up stairs. We knock on apartment door 6 but no answer. I sensed Holy Spirit telling me not this one. We go to apartment number 7 and my spirit begins to leap. I told my partner. " This is the Spanish family. This is the one!" We knocked on the door ,and it was just as I had saw in my vision. We ministered to the family in our broken Spanish and gave them the gift card. They were excited and taken back by our act of kindness. We let them know that Jesus loved them and turned and walked away.  Next we went to some other Apartments and houses. We ministered and prayed with a few, but we did not see the black woman in the grey shirt. We felt like she would be near the Price Chopper shopping area in Grandview. We drive into the parking lot where the Dollar store resides. A older gentlemen was in the parking lot with the hood of his car up and appeared to have car trouble. I felt compelled to stop and asked if he needed help. He said "yes" and I pulled around, pulled out my jumper cables, and tried to get his car cranked. As we were standing there waiting to see if the transference of battery energy would carry over to gentleman's battery; I saw the black woman in a grey shirt walking on a side walk with her children. I motioned my partner in crime and told him, " There is the woman in the vision you saw." He looks and slowly walks in her direction. He comes back minutes later sharing what God had done.  This was truly a great day! I could give you countless stories of this happening in my life. Maybe you don't like the phrase " Prophetic Evangelism." That is fine call it whatever you want, but the key is listening to Holy Spirit.

Too many Christians share the gospel without Holy Spirit's involvement. The commandment to go into all the world was given prior to wait until the promise has come upon you. The disciples did not go into all the world until the promise came upon them. Jesus knew they would need the power and direction of Holy Spirit to spread the message around the world. We need Holy Spirit more and more even today. Leaving tracks on public toilet seats , preaching the gospel to any thing that oves in your eye's view, and telling people to stop cussing around you are not ideal types of evangelism. Evangelizing without the leading of Holy Spirit is like casting your pearls before the swine. The message falls on deaf ears and is trampled upon. For me, I feel the call to protect the message and not just let it float out without Holy Spirit's direction.  I have not always been that way mind you, but it is through my many past mistakes I can share this truth with you today.

Prophetic evangelism is a precision way to evangelize. I call it the sniper shooting of evangelism. You get in shoot the target who was prior given to you and you get out. It is much cleaner and  you find yourself simply being the spectator as Holy Spirit takes over. It is a beautiful thing! God has called us all to this form of reaching out.  We all have the ability to connect with Holy Spirit then in turn share the message with others. How can people come unless Holy Spirit draws them anyway? Salvation cannot happen without Him. So how does one Prophetically evangelize? Let me give you some simple truths. Please write me if you have questions or would like to know more about this topic.

Prophetic Evangelism:

1. Be open to the Holy Spirit.  ( You have to have a relationship with the Spirit of God in order to hear from Him. )
2. Don't be afraid to get it wrong. (  Many believers are afraid to reach out because they are afraid of being wrong. You know what? Sometimes you are going to be wrong. We are human ; it happens. We mistaken the voice of God sometimes with the voice of the bean burrito we had the night before. It happens. Learn from it and continue to trust God. )
3. Don't focus on trying to get a vision, dream, or some word in your thoughts just trust in Holy Spirit to reveal when the time is write.
4. Don't go straight to the first place you see. Drive around and listen to Holy Spirit.
5. Be open to go any where even to a laundry mat or local store.
6. When you discover your target just don't run up to him or her. Cautiously approach and wait on Holy Spirit for the words to speak.
7. Know when you are done with your  present assignment and be prepared to be taken to your next. ( Many Christians don't know when to shut up.  I have a relative that is that way, and it turns people off and can ruin what Holy Spirit is trying to do. Simply conclude the conversation when Holy Spirit has concluded. )
8. Understand that P.E. is also the revealing of the person's heart. Holy Spirit will give you things to speak to the individual that you had no way of knowing about. Remember the Story of the Woman at the Well with Jesus. He told her things that only she would know. 

Once again, I hope this has helped you in some way. Get out and share you faith. Don't be afraid to let people know about our Savior. Be led by Holy Spirit. Trust that he will guide you and give you the words to say. Once again, I wanted to say that all the other forms of Evangelism are just as great as prophetic evangelism but the key is listening to Holy Spirit's direction. Make sure that Holy Spirit is guiding you to each event and assignment. A true farmer and harvester of souls knows how to plant seed and harvest a crop.  The bible says that " He who wins souls is wise..." Prophetic Evangelism is  a keen way to be wise in our efforts to spread the Gospel.