ALERT

closed eyed man holding his face using both of his hands

Hello Church,

I feel that something very significant needs to be said, even though, we may not want to hear it. I think everyone is able to acknowledge its existence. We need to get our heads out of the sand…we are not Ostriches.

Whether we like it or not we are in a battle—a spiritual battle. Paul writes in Ephesians, “…our fight is not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, and against spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly places.” (Ephesians 6:12 MEV) Indeed, Satan has taken a foothold on all of creation.

One thing is very evident, we need to gather together in prayer to the One who holds the keys to heaven. Surely you can see the battle taking place. The question is which side are you going to be on? To not acknowledge the gravity of the situation is to be on the side of evil. All you need to do is look around you. People are shooting each other; they are coming together in mobs because of their frustration; our government is divided and would rather be seen as right than do the job they were elected to do, they fight like a bunch of children who haven’t grown up yet; and maybe worst of all, Satan has infiltrated the church causing divisions within them. Divided we fall, but united we stand.

The word Satan is not heard in very many churches today. We need to be aware of his presence. Do not give him room to work his wiles. He will charm you and court you and con you, but DO NOT fall for it. More is needed than to sit in the pew on Sunday. We need—I’ll say it once again—to gather together in prayer. We need to stop being ashamed of being seen praying in public. We need to teach our children the power of prayer at an early age. What a shame, for some that has already been lost.

Do not be afraid and do not be discouraged. Put on the full armor of God—live according to the truth; make sure your heart is right with God; spread peace not unrest; stand firm in your faith; guard your mind with the Word of God and in your hand carry the mightiest sword of all the Holy Bible. Then wrap it all together by praying in the Spirit for yourself, your family, and the world.

Remember these words spoken to Solomon conditioning him against the evil that is to come and giving him the prescription for surviving…God said,” If my people, who are called by My name, will humble themselves and pray, and seek My face and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin and will heal their land.” (2 Chronicles 7:14 MEV)

GET BEHIND ME, SATAN!

Thank you for listening…now let’s get busy and do something about this!

 

II Chronicles 7:14   II Chronicles 6: 26-42

Set Free

white birds flying

“…do not use your freedom as an opportunity for self-indulgence” Galatians 5:13

 

The little boy and the old man say, “I can do anything I want!” That is a true statement, in a sense. Then, again, it is not. The word “anything” covers a wide spectrum. First, we must ask ourselves some questions; will it hurt anyone? Will what I do cause anyone to do something that will hurt someone else? And most importantly, is it in the will of God?

Paul in his letter to the Philippians writes: “…whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is pleasing, whatever is commendable, if there is any excellence and if there is anything worthy of praise, think on these things.” (4:8) In other words, we are free to do “anything” that brings peace and contentment to ourselves and others.

Freedom is a special gift not set apart from the law. It is a fulfillment of the law. It enables you and me to live in harmony with God and one another. Now there is a prerequisite to the totality of freedom, which is, one who does not know God cannot experience it. To be a totally free human being one must set their mind on the things of the Lord. This is what Paul means when he told the Corinthians,” When I was a child, I spoke like a child. When I became an adult, I put an end to childish ways” (I Cor. 13:11)

Freedom is a privilege shared by those who know the Lord and live in peace with one another. The law, whether man-made or handed down by God on tablets from Mt. Sinai, is desperately needed just as a corral for sheep. Without them we would wander off in all directions resulting in a chaotic world. Even so from time to time one does wander, but God will always bring them back.

Call upon Jesus and He will set you free-free to be the one He created you to be. He will fill you with the strength, power, and love of the Holy Spirit. It may not change your circumstances, but within you will find joy once again. The words of Paul; “Rejoice always, pray without ceasing, give thanks in all circumstance; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you.” (I Thess. 5:16-18)

“Now may the Lord of peace himself give you peace at all times in all ways. The Lord be with all of you.” (2 Thess. 3:16)

Dear Lord, help me to find peace in this chaotic world. Help me to be an instrument of your peace. In Jesus’ name I pray. Amen

 

LET THERE BE PEACE ON EARTH

Words: Sy Miller and Jill Jackson

United Methodist Hymnal

United Methodist Publishing House 1989

 

Let there be peace on earth, and let it begin with me

Let there be peace on earth, the peace that was meant to be.

With God our creator, children all are we.

Let us walk with each other in perfect harmony.

Let peace begin with me; let this be the moment now.

With every step I take, let this be my solemn vow;

To take each moment and live each moment in peace eternally.

Let there be peace on earth, and let it begin with me.

 

Romans 8:2   John 8:36   Romans 3:27   Galatians 2:19   I Cor. 15:45   2 Cor. 3:5, 6

Forget About It

“For I am about to do something new.” Isaiah 43:19

two people standing near seashore

 

“Look I am doing a new thing,” shouts the Lord to Isaiah and the people of Israel. “Do you not see it?” (Isaiah 43:18-19)

Relationships are key to leading a full and rewarding life, but they must be right relationships. Also, some relationships are down-right destructive to your character and your spirit.

A young, not-so innocent, young lady fell in love. She got married and began what she thought was going to be a story-book life. However, a few years and two children later, it started to turn sour. She wanted to hold onto this relationship—for better or for worse, after all, she had made a vow on her wedding day. Two more children came along and life grew more and more tense. She was living in a hell she had not signed up for. Oh, she was not a woman of perfection, and probably if she were honest, added flame to the raging fire. Did God have a reason to allow this to happen?

Sometimes our eyes are blinded to everything but what we see right in front of us. Circumstances are so dire that they are always at the forefront of our lives. It is true God has a plan for your life. Jeremiah writes: “…I know the plans I have for you…They are plans for good and not for disaster, to give you a future and a hope.” (29:11) Look to the Lord—call upon Him and He will answer you.

God does not want us to be in relationships that do not honor Him. Jesus, who was God born to us, gave up His life so that we could live a resourceful, righteous, re-committed life for Him. You and I must be in relationship with Him above all other relationships. He will lead us into right relationships that will honor Him. Even as we fought to hang onto one that brought harm to us, God will bring us back and set our feet on the straight and narrow path that leads us home.

So our Lord and Savior leads us, His Holy Spirit guides us to the beautiful life He has promised. Put your blinders on, look straight ahead—do not look back. For this is the day the Lord has made and you must be glad in it—(paraphrased Psalm 118:24) for He is doing a new thing…do you not see it? (Isaiah 43:18-19)

Dear Lord, I want to have friends in my life that You want me to have. Help me to release the people You are leading me away from. In Jesus’ name I pray. Amen

“Ask me and I will tell you remarkable secrets you do not know about things to come.” Jeremiah 33:3

Isaiah 43:18   Psalm 32:8   Proverbs 4:25

Hearing Visions

The year 2020 reminds me of vision. When a person has 2020 vision they are able to see clearly. Therefore, I believe the New Year 2020 is the year of vision. Those who open their heart and hear the Word of the Lord will have 2020 vision. This is the year that great things will happen for those who open their eyes and ears to the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. Will that someone be you?

 

The following meditation is entitled “Hearing Visions.”

 

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“Blessed is the man…his delight is in the law of the Lord…”

Psalm 1:1, 2

 

As I look out through the windows of our Florida room, I see God’s creation in all its glory. There is water, wild life, flowers, and trees. The trees stand straight and strong at the edge of the water, where they have been for many years. They provide shade, sustenance for birds and bees, and a place for squirrels and birds to nest and rest. But, without the water that feeds its roots and the sun that provides the vitamins it needs, that tree would not be able to stand.

The same is true of you and me. We need strength to give us life. Oh, yes, we need bread, vegetables, water, etc. to provide our bodies sustenance, but living on just what we put into our mouths gives us only survival. We need the Word of God to give us life abundantly.

In the Old Testament we read about the Hebrews who were running wild at the foot of Mt. Sinai where Moses left them under the charge of Aaron so he could go up the mountain to confer with God. When he returned he found them out of control—they had collected all the gold jewelry, threw it into the fire and made for themselves a golden idol. They refused to worship the Lord and went in anarchy—they were not paying attention to laws set down by God and they were in a state of confusion and chaos. (Exodus 32:25ff)

The Psalmist tells us that a man is blessed when he puts his delight in the Lord and meditates upon it day and night. (Psalm 1:2) Paul told the Roman church that without a preacher who depends upon the Lord and speaks truth to the people, they cannot hear the Word. (Romans 10:14) And the Wisdom of Solomon tells us: “Where there is no vision the people perish, but happy is he who keeps the teaching.” (Proverbs 29:18 MEV)

Now having said all this, look at our world today. Is there confusion and chaos? Are our leaders looking to God for answers on how they should lead the people in the land of the free and the home of the brave? Are our preachers preaching the Word? Are they being held accountable for what they do and say?

You see “seeing visions” isn’t about dreams or daydreaming. “Seeing visions” is about hearing the Word and living in the truth of it. Without such a vision you will be thrown into a life of complete confusion. The people in Moses’ time longed for something that they refused to accept and tried to make it for themselves, in doing so, they caused themselves great suffering. The same will happen to you when you do not, refuse to, or cannot, hear the vision of a life abundant that God has planned for you.

Read God’s Holy Word—seek a Bible preaching church—put into practice what you see and hear.

 

Dear Lord, this world is in great turmoil—we long for Your peace. In Jesus’ name we pray. Amen

Proverbs 29:18   John 13:17   I Samuel 3:1   Amos 8:11   James 1:25

THERE’S A BABY ON THE WAY

“…she was found to be with child from the Holy Spirit.” Matthew 1:18c

jesus christ figurine

Many of us know the joy, accompanied with a certain amount of stress, that accompanies a baby on the way. There is nine months of expanding discomfort and in the last moments (or perhaps hours) pain. We can envision all this for Mary. But, for her there was much, much more.

We are once again anticipating a baby on the way. This baby was conceived through the power of the Holy Spirit who came upon the Virgin Mary. This in and of itself, is hard to wrap our minds around! There is no way to do it but by faith, and trust, and belief in God.

Mary was young, too young we might say, to have a baby. But, here she was—not married, although betrothed (engaged) to Joseph. How would he react? The scripture tells us that he, too, was visited by an angel of the Lord who prepared him and commanded him to stand beside Mary, “having no marital relations until she had borne a son.” (Matthew 1:18-25) This angel also told them the baby’s name—Emmanuel (which means God with us).

Think of it!! God came to earth in the form of a baby whom we call Jesus, who was born to give Himself up to death that you and I might live! He lay there in the manger surrounded by his mother and earthly father, Joseph. If anyone really knew who this baby was I believe it was the animals that lay there in the cold and hay with Him. This Jesus was not born of the blood, or the flesh, or of the will of man, but of the will of God. (John 1:13) He came that you and I might know and understand the love that the father has for us. But, still some turn their backs on Him, which is illustrated when the Innkeeper told Mary and Joseph that there was no room for them in the Inn—”Go to the stable!” he said.

December 25th is the date man has chosen to celebrate the birthday of Jesus the Messiah. Let us offer the gift that goes on giving—ourselves. Turn the lights on in your heart that the true meaning of this day, when God came to earth and dwelt among us, will change not only this one day, but every day to come. May you experience the joy of walking with Jesus—the baby that was borne to die to save your soul. He ultimately gave Himself up for you—and is our Greatest Gift.

 

Let us pray

Dear Lord, Please help us to

 Listen like the shepherds…

Rejoice like the angels…

Seek like the wise men…

Believe like Mary and Joseph…

And live all year long

With the peace, joy and love

Christ came to give.

AMEN

PEACE ON EARTH AND GOOD WILL TOWARD MEN!

 

Believing In What Is Not Seen

woman covering her face with corn leaves

“Unless I see…I will not believe.” John 20:25

 

The Holy Spirit is the third person of the Trinity—God the Father, God the Son, God the Holy Spirit. These three make up the God-Head. Together they created the world and all that is in it; (Gen.1) together they minister to all those who believe. But, there is a problem! Many are like Thomas and say, “Unless I see, I will not believe!” What a shame; what a loss.

The fact is, if you believe you will see. You see, believing is seeing. Now I know, you will say, “How can that be?” Well, look around you. Someone was supposed to be at the World Trade Center when it was attacked in 2001, but for one reason or another didn’t make it and their life was spared. Another, didn’t get the job they wanted, but found out 6 months later that the company went bankrupt. Another, retired against his better judgment, but shortly after he retired, there was a fire that would’ve wiped out his job without retirement pay. There are many decisions that may be made that are not necessarily one we want to make, but turn out to be the best for us. Why? Could it be because there is something to this Holy Spirit thing?

I wonder what the Lord has planned for you who believe today. Are you willing to follow the path that He has laid out for you? The Psalmist writes, “This is the day that the Lord has made, I will be glad and rejoice in it.” (Psalm 118:24) And, “Be still and know that I am God.” (Psalm 46:10) Luke writes, “For nothing will be impossible with God.” (1:37)

The Holy Spirit makes it possible to see God. He came upon Mary that she would give birth to the Son of God—who was named Jesus—and who would become the Savior of the world. (Luke 1:35) John quotes Jesus as saying, “Blessed are those who have not seen and yet have come to believe.” (John 20:29 b) It takes faith to believe. You must believe to have faith.

Let us ask the Holy Spirit to teach us His ways. And to help us to see how He moves in our life and in the lives of others. Let us see His wisdom, grace, kindness, patience, mercy, and truth. Look for the positives in life and let go of the negatives.

Dear Lord, make me to know Your ways and teach me you paths. In Jesus name I pray. Amen

Isaiah 55:8   Psalm 18:30   Deuteronomy 32:4   Romans 12:3   Revelation 15:3 b   Psalm 12:6   Psalm 25:4

Heart To Mouth

woman wearing pink long sleeved shirt ad white drawstring bottoms

“For it is a credit to you if, being aware of God, you endure pain while suffering unjustly.

1 Peter 2:19

 

Our bodies are a work of genius by the Creator Himself. Think about it, each part is intricately formed having a particular function for the wellness of the body. Each part is separate, but all of them work together. If one part insists on going on its own, the rest of the body tries to compensate until the “selfish” part gets back on track. So to, the Body of Christ, known as the Church, made up of believers. Faith sets the believer apart from the unbeliever. Like sheep we go astray, but the Shepherd always brings us back. Isaiah writes: “All we like sheep have gone astray; we have all turned to our own way, and the Lord has laid on him the iniquity of us all.” (53:6)

“So, what does this have to do with my heart and my mouth?” you may ask. The answer is it has everything to do with them. Sometimes your mouth says things that come right out of left field. And your heart says “Where did that come from?” The writer of Proverbs (said to be Solomon) says, “My child, give me your heart, and let your eyes observe my ways!” (23:26) And James writes, “but no one can tame the tongue—a restless evil, full of deadly poison. With it we bless the Lord and Father, and with it we curse those who are made in the likeness of God.” (3:8, 9)

Therefore, whatever is in your heart, dictates what comes out of your mouth, unless you allow other people, or take on idols other than God and His Word to influence you. Then you give your tongue free reign. You must remember that God has chosen you and loves you. John writes the words that Jesus spoke to His disciples: “You did not choose me but I chose you, and I appointed you to go and bear fruit, fruit that will last, so that the father will give you whatever you ask in my name.” (15:16) And, that includes a heart full of faith and love.

So, brothers and sisters, if you lack anything and your mouth seems to be running away with itself, ask the Lord to come into your heart and remind you of what is important. Remember, “Do not neglect to do good and to share what you have, for such sacrifices are pleasing to God.” (Heb. 3:16)

This is my prayer for all of us:- “Now may the God of Peace, who brought back from the dead our Lord Jesus, the great shepherd of the sheep, by the blood of the eternal covenant, make you compete in everything good so that you may do his will, working among us which is pleasing in His sight, through Jesus Christ, to whom, be the glory forever and ever. Amen” (Hebrews 13:20, 21) “Christ in your heart is your only hope of glory.” (Colossians 1:27 TLB)

 

O Lord blessed be this day that my heart is right with You. Fill me with Your Holy Spirit. In Jesus’ name I pray. Amen

I Peter 2:23   Isaiah 53:7   I Peter 1:18-19   Isaiah 53:5

Psalm 119:176   John 10:11

By the transforming power of the gospel people and situations change. May your heart be transformed.