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Sunday
Oct162016

Lord, Could This Be You?

A scene from the Old Testament has been rolling through my head for weeks.  I knew it involved Elijah and how God knew about hidden ones.  I searched and searched my iphone Bible ap which I love except for their search engine.  I talked to Chuck about it and he had difficulty finding it also.. Finally I found it.

"Elijah replied, "I have zealously served the Lord God Almighty, But the people of Israel have broken their covenant with you, torn down your altars, and killed every one of your prophets. I am the only one left and now they are trying to kill me too." "Go out and stand before me on the mountain," the Lord told him. And as Elijah stood there, the LORD passed by and a mighty windstorm hit the mountain, it was such a terrible blast that the rocks were torn loose, but the LORD was not in the wind. After the wind there was an earthquake, but the LORD was not in the earthquake. And after the earthquake there was a fire, but the LORD was not in the fire. And after the fire there was the sound of a gentle whisper. When Elijah heard it, he wrapped his face in his cloak and went out and stood at the entrance of the cave. And a voice said "What are you doing here, Elijah?" He replied again, "I have zealously served the LORD God Almighty. But the people of Israel have broken their covenant with you, torn down your altars, and killled every one of your prophets. I am the only one left, and now they are trying to kill me, too." Then the LORD told him, "Go back the same way you came, and travel to the wilderness of Damascus. When you arrive there anoint Hazael to be king or Aram. Then anoint Jehu grandson of Nimshi to be king of Israel, and anoint Elisha son of Saphat from the town of Abel-meholah to replace you as my prophet. Anyone who escapes from Hazael will be killed by Jehu, and those who escape Jehu will be killed by Elisha! Yet I will preserve 7,000 others in Israel who have never bowed down to Baal or kissed him! 1Kings 19:10-18 NLT

i felt the Lord was giving me some encouragement about the 2016 Presidential election. With all the blatant sin and corruption in this country, which until our present president was proclaimed to be a Christian nation, it is easy to get very discouraged and think like Elijah. Basically he was saying what's the use, the world is going to hell in a hand basket, nothing will change and besides I am the only God fearing zealot left anyway.

Despite Elijah's despair the Lord gave him the plan to raise up two unexpected government officials to bring down Ahab and Jezebel(the Baal system), give them an anointed prophet and proclaimed unbeknown to Elijah he had thousands who had not bowed or kissed Baal. 

I believe that the enemy of our soul and this country would like us to believe that we are all alone, nothing will change, so what is the use. But God says we are not alone, he has a plan in place and if we, HIS PEOPLE, will humble ourselves and pray, turn from our wicked ways He will hear from heaven and heal our land.

I pray this is the word of the Lord for November 8, 2016.

 

Friday
Oct072016

HOW BEAUTIFUL!

Behold, how good and how pleasant it is for brethren to dwell together in unity! It is like the precious ointment upon the head, that ran down upon the beard, even Aaron's beard: that went down to the skirts of his garments; As the dew of Hermon, and as the dew that descended upon the mountains of Zion: for there the Lord commanded the blessing, even life for evermore.”
‭‭Psalms‬ ‭133:1-3‬ ‭KJV‬‬

"Hermon is the very loftiest peak in all the land of Palestine, and from its snowy cap, when all the surrounding country is parched, the refreshing dew descends upon the mountains of Zion; and this is one of the figures used by the Holy Ghost to illustrate the beauty and pleasantness of brethren dwelling together in unity."
C.H. McIntosch

One of the things that really impressed me about my week seving in Baton Rouge as a Chaplain was the importance of the unity of the believers. I met so many lovely people who came from even as far as Canada. These people left home, family, and/or jobs, paying their own way to help strangers in need.  I am sure they all had some needs themselves, who doesn't, and yet they clothed themselves in a servants heart to work together for the good of someone else(black, white, yellow, young, or old) in a time of need.  
 
I did did not witness jealousy or competitiveness, I did not hear anyone complain except for ice forming on their toes at night while asleep. 😊  The leaders of the teams were in control, but there was no lording over those they were leading. They directed while working side by side to accomplish a work of excellence for the homeowner in need.

There was a mutual respect between the Samaritan's  Purse volunteers and the Billy Graham Evangelistic Assoc Chaplains(RRT). It worked like a highly oiled machine and because of the putting aside all individual agendas to minister to those hurting, the presence of God hovered and He accomplished much through his servants. Because of this I personally experienced the refreshing dew of the Holy Spirit.
 
We were in spiritual warfare before, during and after this assignment to a degree that I must say I did not expect.  There was one incident that the enemy pulled all stops to try to interject discord. I must say that it caught me by surprise and at first my defenses went up and I reacted.  However, the enemy was not successful and the Lord was victorious.  I real lesson for me to vigilantly watch for this trick and refuse to be a part of his plan.

When we walk as the Lord who was the servant to all, with hearts of compassion, esteeming one higher than yourself, working together to show Christ's love then it is a healing oil that pours down over the hurts of those we come in contact as well as our own wounds.  No wonder satan sows so much discord.  Lord help me to more easily recognize his tricks and walk in the power of unity.
Monday
Oct122015

Choosing The Kingdom of Light

We have several people in our neighborhood who do lovely fall harvest decorations in their yard. Not Halloween, but things that remind you of the first Thanksgiving(hay, pumpkins,mums etc) where pilgrims thanked God for His blessed provisions.

One household in particular spends much time and money and it is beautiful. Thursday as we headed to church we noticed that the household directly across the street had erected a two story tall witch in black dress and purple cape. We both thought yuck. It was  like a dividing line in the street of good and evil.

Yesterday we were on our way to Sunday School and the witch was face down on the ground. My mind went straight way to Samuel.

1Samuel 5:1-3 . "And the Philistines took the Ark of God and brought it from Even Ezer to Ashdod. 2 . When the Philistines took the Ark of God, they brought it into the house of Dagon and set it by Dagon. 3 . And when the people of Ashdod got up early on the next day, behold, Dagon had fallen on his face to the ground before the Ark of the LORD".

I think I participated in Halloween as a child, I do not remember.  I do know I let my children when they were young. However, I so regret it now. We did it for the fun and candy not really thinking about it being a night to celebrate witchcraft. Now that I know that witchcraft is not some Disney fantasy but is a very real part of the kingdom of darkness and it stands against the kingdom of light, I hate Halloween.

I choose the Kingdom of light and celebrate the blessings of God instead.  I am so thankful that Churches have stepped up and are offering Harvest festivals that provide wholesome fun for children within the blessings of God.  

Saturday
Sep052015

Bowing to Baal

I have been reading a lot of opinions of Kim Davis' stand about issuing marriage licenses to same sex couples.  Many, even some very close to me that I love, feel that she should bow to the law of the land(which by the way was made by a body of government who does not have the constitutional right to make laws) or resign from her job.  I have been weighing all aspects and pondering what the biblical view should be. 

Submitting to authority and rendering unto Caesar what is Caesar's is definitely taught in the word.  But did Peter and Paul stop preaching about their risen Lord when told by the authorities to do so?  Did Elijah stop preaching the word of the Lord when everyone was ordered to bow to baal?

Perhaps a closer story to Mrs Davis is recorded in Daniel about four jewish captives, Daniel. Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego.  They were captured young. transported to Babylon and were favored by God to be educated and prepared for high places in Nebuchadnezzar's kingdom.  They submitted to the King as far as it did not compromise their beliefs and when they had to say no, God stood behind them.  That tells me that God himself put his approval on their decisions to not bow, submit, to the law of the land.

Nebuchadnezzar made a golden idol in his image and ordered everyone to bow to it when they heard the sound.  Well, the four Jewish favored men who were working for Nebuchadnezzar refused to bow. It was the law of the land, but a higher law said you shall have no other gods before you.  They did not resign, they continued their work, but they could not bow.  Three were thrown into a furnace and one to the lions, but God moved on their behalf.

If Kim Davis resigned as everyone has suggested then where would the voice against this law that is against God's law be?  Would it not be silenced, which is what this antichrist spirit wants? There is a god in America that has raised it's head in arrogance and hate.  It is a spirit of Baal.  A spirit that requires sacrifice of innocent babies and is full of lust and all perversions.  It attacks all things righteous.

I, for one, applaud Kim Davis for her refusal to bow to Baal.  I am sure this is not an easy place for her, nor one she chose for herself.  But she is a voice for truth.  It is not about what Kim Davis believes as much as it is what the Lord God Almighty has declared to be righteous. A line is being drawn in the sand and before it is over we all will be required to make a decision to even bow to Baal or bow to the King of Kings and the Lord of Lords.  Choose this day whom you will serve.

Friday
May082015

Position with conditions

God ordained and placed the Levites, Aaron's decedents, to be the priests. It was supposed to be an established well provided for position forever. But He also set up clear, strict laws that they were to follow in their lives and ministry.

Hophni and Phinehas were Eli's sons. They were priest, a position promised to their family. Their father was a faithful judge and priest. His son's, however, stole offerings/sacrifices that were given by the people to God. They were allotted a portion by God Himself, but they were not satisfied with that. They wanted more. They also were involved in sexual sins right there at the Tabernacle.

I was young and now I am old. I have observed through the years that many offspring of ministers may have a call on their life, but they refuse to be satisfied with what God provides them and refuse to live by God's law. Their parents may recognize their sin and may even scold but they fall short of dealing with them or removing them from the position. God fearing workers under these offspring are many times over worked, misused, disillusioned, and unrewarded. Therefore, like Eli and his sons, they fatally mistake God's mercy for approval. But one day Mercy left and Eli and his sons died and the family was cut off from ministry and cursed.

I recognize as a parent that it would be hard to fire your child. But this a serious, serious thing. To ignore their sins will cause death and a curse. It opens a door for the enemy to be victorious and for the Spirit of the Lord to leave the whole ministry. "I have warned him that judgment is coming upon his family forever, because his sons are blaspheming God and he hasn’t disciplined them. So I have vowed that the sins of Eli and his sons will never be forgiven by sacrifices or offerings.” (‭1 Samuel‬ ‭3‬:‭1, 13-14‬ NLT)

I am afraid for the life of some son's as well as some ministry parents who remained faithful themselves but continue to make exceptions for their children. Ichabod is about to be written and I grieve.

So why do you scorn my sacrifices and offerings? Why do you give your sons more honor than you give me—for you and they have become fat from the best offerings of my people Israel! (‭1 Samuel‬ ‭2‬:‭29‬ NLT)

Sunday
Apr052015

Memorial Stones

Forty eight plus years ago Chuck and I lost our only daughter. We buried her in the Waggener-Williams plot in a historic Vicksburg cemetery. Her body rests there but she is with the Lord, well cared for.

For some reason over the past few weeks my heart was grieving again. My thoughts were often on Catherine and wondering how our family dynamics might have been different had she lived. Wondering how she would have felt about different situations in our lives and what she would have said or done.

This week with Easter approaching and our family gathering yesterday to celebrate, a desire to visit the gravesite and take flowers became very strong. I had not been since our move back to MS. So Good Friday we stopped in to Hobby Lobby and got what we needed.

Yesterday my thoughts were more on what she never had to experience. She has only known love. She never knew pain, heartache or betrayal. She never had any dispute with us as parents and we never disappointed her. She never was tempted and never felt failure. All she has known is good and beauty, she did not know evil or ugliness. I am sure she never had a tear on her beautiful cheeks and much laughter has passed through her lips.

This morning we realized we had a short window to achieve this desire before the rain storm came, and of course it would hit Vicksburg first. So we watched Easter service online, ate breakfast and headed out.

I had prayed the last few days that the Lord would do something special on this visit and give me peace. I shared this with my friend, Joy, who has lost two babies and she told me she would pray.

We arrived at the gravesite with about an hour to visit before the rain. I stepped out of the car and headed up the hill. I first noticed two stones on the top of the first graves of Chuck's grandparents. "That's strange" I spoke out loud. Then as my eyes panned the 8 gravesites in the plot I saw they all had stones of different sizes on the tombstones. My heart leaped. "Chuck",I screamed. "Look at all the stones!" He looked at me puzzled and I told him, "this is what they do in Jerusalem". They take stones and leave them instead of flowers. I looked around and no other gravesite at the cemetery that I could see had stones just ours. i asked Chuck if the stones were there when he came and repaired the falling wall in the late fall 2014.  He said they were not there.

Chuck told me to notice they were not just any stones. Some were granite and some were geodes. All different shapes, sizes and colors. All of the headstones had one stone except his great uncle's that had several.

I looked up why stones and this is what I found. --Rabbi Simkha Weintraub, Rabbinic director of the New York Jewish Healing Center offered another traditional interpretation: "The Hebrew word for ‘pebble’ is tz’ror – and it happens that this Hebrew word also means ‘bond.’ When we pray the memorial El Maleh Rahamim prayer (and at other times) we ask that the deceased be ‘bound up in the bond of life’ – tz’ror haHayyim. By placing the stone, we show that we have been there, and that the individual’s memory continues to live on in and through us."

I personally believe this was a God moment for me. Seeing these stones strategically place on each headstone in our family plot broke something in me and brought joy. Right before we went to leave I noticed a stone sitting by itself on the grass in a far corner. I walked over and picked it up thinking that I would add it to Catherine's stone. I turned to find the stone that was on her grave was gone and the one I just picked up was the missing stone. "How did Catherine's stone get way over here?", I asked Chuck.  He thought maybe it happened when he was weed eating but I showed him the picture I took after he had finished and I had placed flowers. The stone was on her headstone in the picture. It was as if an angel picked it up and dropped it for me to find just to prove we were experiencing a God moment.

Drops of rain began and we packed up and headed home having experienced a memorable Easter.

 

 

Monday
Feb022015

Walk ON

To illustrate the point further, Jesus told them this story: “A man had two sons. The younger son told his father, ‘I want my share of your estate now before you die.’ So his father agreed to divide his wealth between his sons.

About the time his money ran out, a great famine swept over the land, and he began to starve. He persuaded a local farmer to hire him, and the man sent him into his fields to feed the pigs. The young man became so hungry that even the pods he was feeding the pigs looked good to him. But no one gave him anything. “When he finally came to his senses, he said to himself, ‘At home even the hired servants have food enough to spare, and here I am dying of hunger! I will go home to my father and say, “Father, I have sinned against both heaven and you, and I am no longer worthy of being called your son. Please take me on as a hired servant.”’ “So he returned home to his father. And while he was still a long way off, his father saw him coming. Filled with love and compassion, he ran to his son, embraced him, and kissed him. His son said to him, ‘Father, I have sinned against both heaven and you, and I am no longer worthy of being called your son. ’ “But his father said to the servants, ‘Quick! Bring the finest robe in the house and put it on him. Get a ring for his finger and sandals for his feet. And kill the calf we have been fattening. We must celebrate with a feast, for this son of mine was dead and has now returned to life. He was lost, but now he is found.’ So the party began. (‭Luke‬ ‭15‬:‭11-12, 14-24‬ NLT)

I have had this story put before me several times in the last few years. Having broken relationships in my life which was causing my heart to break, I have asked the Lord so many times what I could do to change their heart toward me. I would reach out only to have the door slammed in my face enough that the rejection was unbearable at times.

When I look at this parable about the prodical son, the one thing that I began to see was that the father did not go after the son. It is obvious that his heart was hurt because of the choice that his son made, but he did not even try to change his mind nor did cut him off. The father rather gave him what he wanted and went on with his life with the rest of his family. I am sure the father never stopped yearning and praying for his son, but he walked on with what he had to do to please His God.

So many times those we love make choices that we can not change no mater what we say or do. Sometimes everything we say gets twisted by the Levaithian spirit and causes worse problems. We then have a choice, do we let that rule and ruin our lives or do we let them live the life they choose and walk on leaving it all in God's merciful hands. As I rode down the highway several months ago, I clearly heard "Keep walking forward. If they choose to walk beside you great, but if they don't, walk on."

I do not by any means feel the Lord is saying give up or stop praying. Nor do I forget the role of the Holy Spirit to seek, pursue and teach. But He is saying don't let Satan win by causing you to be overcome by hurt and letting it interfer with what God wants you to do. Personally if I stay there it will eventually kill me physically, emotionally and spiritually. I was fast on that track of letting that happen. I can hardly explain it, but those words broke the chains from my heart.

The Bible is full of stories where God, knowing that the one He loved was making a bad choice, allowed them to go their own way. He did not become an enabler by jumping in and relieving them of the consequences of the choice. Boy, is that the hard part. He never stopped loving, but He gave them the right to choose. When all the consequenses of their choice were full and they recognized truth and returned, He was right there with open arms to reconcile. Their bad choice does not reflect on who God is nor does the bad choice of those you love always reflect on who you are. The fact remains we are all given the ability to make choices, good and bad, and we alone are responsible for those choices.

So, my friends, I walk on.

Saturday
Jan032015

A SOLITARY PLACE

Have you ever thought about the fact that had it not been for one righteous man on the earth who could hear God's voice and choose to obey even when it was a total mystery to him you would not exist. 

This is the account of Noah and his family. Noah was a righteous man, the only blameless person living on earth at the time, and he walked in close fellowship with God. (‭Genesis‬ ‭6‬:‭9‬ NLT)

It is mind blowing that out of all the population of the earth only one man was righteous enough to attract the favor of God and thus save humanity from being wiped off the face of the earth. Talk about a lonely place. Can you imagine being different from everyone on the face of the earth?

What a price it must have cost Noah prior to the flood, not to mention what it cost to be obedient till the end. Noah is was over 500 years old and having to build a huge boat to save his family and the animals from rain that was never seen before. Then floating around for 150 days and once the water dried up he and his family had a major start all over alone phase. 100 years of doing what appeared to be mundane every day task. Chopping trees, transpoting them, cutting them to specification, taking care of every day survival task of growing crops, tending flock, etc, etc, etc.  Not to mention the daily family interaction that happens as well as resisting temptation and standing in the midst of scorn. Noah was a strong man, physically and spiritually. 

God sets the solitary in families; He brings out those who are bound into prosperity; But the rebellious dwell in a dry land. (‭Psalms‬ ‭68‬:‭6‬ NKJV)

Being obedient to what God calls us to do reaches further than ourselves. It has to do with the salvation and blessings of your family for generations.  It preserved Noah's blood line which would bring forth the promised seed, Jesus.

Our destiny may thrust us into a lonely place full of hard work. It may seem mundane, not glamerous, but the reward is passed from generation to generation.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Friday
Jan022015

Interception

Joseph's plans to marry, have a business and raise children were planned out until the intervention of God. Not something he even considered. God's plan intercepted his plan. Kind of like some of the football games we watched the last few days. The quarterback had the game plan, started executing, pulled back his arm and threw the ball when out of the blue here comes a player from the other team and he intercepts the ball and runs in the opposite direction.
Mary, Joseph's promised wife, gets pregnant by the Holy Spirit, (interception) then they have to go to Bethlehem for a census when his wife is ready to deliver (interception), then they have to leave home, relatives, friends and job to run to Egypt (interception), then he was blocked from going home and settled in Nazareth(interception). 
Chuck and I have been on a long journey that was full of unexpected interceptions. You question and condemned yourself because what you thought was a set plan changed without warning. Sometimes our plans are totally interrupted to accomplish God's plan. We feel like our plans have been spoiled or intercepted when actually we have walked into our destiny. 

 

Tuesday
Jan142014

It Is Starting To Rain in Israel

Awake, awake, Zion, clothe yourself with strength! Put on your garments of splendor, Jerusalem, the holy city. The uncircumcised and defiled will not enter you again. Shake off your dust; rise up, sit enthroned, Jerusalem. Free yourself from the chains on your neck, Daughter Zion, now a captive. For this is what the Lord says: “You were sold for nothing, and without money you will be redeemed.” For this is what the Sovereign Lord says: “At first my people went down to Egypt to live; lately, Assyria has oppressed them. “And now what do I have here?” declares the Lord . “For my people have been taken away for nothing, and those who rule them mock, ” declares the Lord . “And all day long my name is constantly blasphemed. Therefore my people will know my name; therefore in that day they will know that it is I who foretold it. Yes, it is I.” How beautiful on the mountains are the feet of those who bring good news, who proclaim peace, who bring good tidings, who proclaim salvation, who say to Zion, “Your God reigns!” Listen! Your watchmen lift up their voices; together they shout for joy. When the Lord returns to Zion, they will see it with their own eyes. Burst into songs of joy together, you ruins of Jerusalem, for the Lord has comforted his people, he has redeemed Jerusalem. The Lord will lay bare his holy arm in the sight of all the nations, and all the ends of the earth will see the salvation of our God. Isaiah 52:1-10 NIV

Sunday Jan 5th while worshipping I saw a light rain starting to fall in Israel. The latter rain has begun and it is starting in Israel.

Rain softens the hard crusty ground, waters and nourishes the seed which brings forth life. So shall the rain from heaven soften hearts, nourish the spirit and bring forth the latter day promises of God.

This past Sunday, a day of mourning for Israel during the loss of their beloved Ariel Sharon(Ariel means Lion of God), I heard "as it goes with Israel so it will go with the church". Then once again I saw the rain over Israel.

I believe the Lion of God, the Lion of the tribe of Judah is about to roar over Zion and Israel and the Church are about to see a down pour of all our God is.

Be glad then, ye children of Zion, and rejoice in the Lord your God: for he hath given you the former rain moderately, and he will cause to come down for you the rain, the former rain, and the latter rain in the first month. (Joel 2:23 KJV)