A prophetic declaration. As we entered 2017, I sought God for answers for the I-35 corridor of Texas and Oklahoma. From Sanger to Ardmore and surrounding areas. There were a series of answers for those living in this area delivered. This was one of those. These are all available on youtube along with more. Prophecy declares the heart and design and will of God and His intended intervention should we come alongside. He acts sovereign; however, He always acts with those that come alongside. He puts Himself in the position of working with our agreement. He does not need us, but He wants us, He desires us, He commits Himself to work with us. The text of this message can be read at https://evotions.org/2016/12/30/the-age-of-adventure-ii-faith/. Take 20 minutes and begin aligning yourself for miracles.
Many will study and study and study and go to Bible groups and prayer groups and find no more answers than if they went to Starbucks. Others sit at home and read a Bible or book and want to understand. Here is truth that will set you free and it will begin to work the day you come into agreement.
One of the great fun miracles we saw recently happened as I spoke in English for 5-10 minutes to a group of over 150 children and adults in Mexico. Everyone heard and understood in Spanish. The interpreter stopped for the entire time as God ministered. In the same meeting, a woman conversed with God over her private situation as I stood beside her. The channel of communication was so personal, she told my interpreter later that she wondered how I knew so much about the details of her struggles. The Father healed deep wounds and depression in His presence.
These moments of miracles are quite common for me. In a room of unbelievers in the Corridor, the Holy Spirit stepped in and spoke deeply to many. We were impressed to stop and pray. This was not a religious but a community meeting and God stepped into the room. A few days later a woman brought her deep issues to me in counsel. God forgave, healed, restored joy, and brought her to salvation in Christ. These moments of miracles come from this practice I am sharing with you today.
A.Read this statement and get it into your heart. B. Then read the text at the evotions link above and then C. listen to the message.
I speak to you as a called and commissioned minister of the Gospel to the Corridor. There is healing for you in these words. You will find immediate relief in obedience. D. Then go to the list of messages of healing and freedom at https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLAni6D2VjoqjvydPnWbaV8TGPZz5PKzTM and let God build a completely new life for you and your family.
Phil, will it work for me if I live outside the Corridor? Yes. Biblical truth is not limited to geography. When you apply right Biblical principles to your life, you will see miracles. God will intervene for you.
When I understand:
1.Of myself, I cannot get it done.
2.God, the Creator, a personal God, made a way in Christ to be forgiven, accepted, and empowered.
3.I can rest in His death and resurrection. He has built a limitless bank of grace and peace.
4.The King of the Universe loves me and that makes me valuable. You cannot take it away. He has poured His Holy Spirit into my life.
5.He gives me a true “church” family that loves me, accepts me and takes me in.
Anger has no hold.
Addictions drop away.
Depression is defeated.
Provision is at my door.
Strength engulfs me for difficulty.
This simple statement has guided me recently in helping others gain faith in Christ and Christ alone. It is simple. It doesn’t encompass everything, but it encompasses all I need to begin a limitless life of freedom in Him.
Open 2017, The Age of Adventure, with the resources you need.
Where is your David? Where is your leader in waiting? Where is your answer to your greatest question?
One of the greatest and most unusual descriptions of leadership appears with the reluctant prophet, Samuel, walking out an obedient selection of David. Samuel did not want David. Samuel wanted Saul. Samuel, who had been dedicated to God’s service from a young age, wanted to walk a different path than God’s way. Samuel, like us, wanted a king, he wanted his choice. God had completely different plans.
1 Sam 16:7 But the Lord said to Samuel, “Do not consider his appearance or his height, for I have rejected him. The Lord does not look at the things people look at. People look at the outward appearance, but the Lord looks at the heart.”
1 Samuel 16(NIV) Samuel Anoints David
16 The Lord said to Samuel, “How long will you mourn for Saul, since I have rejected him as king over Israel? Fill your horn with oil and be on your way; I am sending you to Jesse of Bethlehem. I have chosen one of his sons to be king.”
2 But Samuel said, “How can I go? If Saul hears about it, he will kill me.”
The Lord said, “Take a heifer with you and say, ‘I have come to sacrifice to the Lord.’ 3 Invite Jesse to the sacrifice, and I will show you what to do. You are to anoint for me the one I indicate.”
4 Samuel did what the Lord said. When he arrived at Bethlehem, the elders of the town trembled when they met him. They asked, “Do you come in peace?”
5 Samuel replied, “Yes, in peace; I have come to sacrifice to the Lord. Consecrate yourselves and come to the sacrifice with me.” Then he consecrated Jesse and his sons and invited them to the sacrifice.
6 When they arrived, Samuel saw Eliab and thought, “Surely the Lord’s anointed stands here before the Lord.”
7 But the Lord said to Samuel, “Do not consider his appearance or his height, for I have rejected him. The Lord does not look at the things people look at. People look at the outward appearance, but the Lord looks at the heart.”
8 Then Jesse called Abinadab and had him pass in front of Samuel. But Samuel said, “The Lord has not chosen this one either.” 9 Jesse then had Shammah pass by, but Samuel said, “Nor has the Lord chosen this one.” 10 Jesse had seven of his sons pass before Samuel, but Samuel said to him, “The Lord has not chosen these.” 11 So he asked Jesse, “Are these all the sons you have?”
“There is still the youngest,” Jesse answered. “He is tending the sheep.”
Samuel said, “Send for him; we will not sit down until he arrives.”
12 So he sent for him and had him brought in. He was glowing with health and had a fine appearance and handsome features.
Then the Lord said, “Rise and anoint him; this is the one.”
13 So Samuel took the horn of oil and anointed him in the presence of his brothers, and from that day on the Spirit of the Lord came powerfully upon David. Samuel then went to Ramah.
Let’s take this piece of the story apart.
Saul was the type leader we all like. He was big, strong, manly, a commanding presence. He would have his way no matter what resistance stood up to him. We like that in leaders. We like that forcefulness, that presence, that persona, that charismatic flair. Such leaders are forgiven for walking over people. They are forgiven for breaking the law. They are forgiven for hardships of not listening and sometimes not caring. We idolize them. God has a different criterion for leaders than commanding personality.
In the media, we don’t care if they violate every moral law. They can be sexual outside of marriage with the same sex or another, but we approve as we are entertained. They can be violent with dog or man if they can lead a football team. They can be alcoholic and drug addicts if the music and energy is what we want. That attitude flows over into the kingdom. God has a different criterion for leaders than performance and excellence on the platform.
It is okay with us for leaders of our thoughts and hearts and actions to be full of pain and problems. They just need to make us feel good. Then they fall. They are flawed in the foundation of character and we did not care. We got what we wanted, a full house and a fun ride. When they fall, and cannot give us what we want, we turn on them. We crucify them. We kill them. We turn into angry Romans and Jews at the foot of the Cross screaming, “Crucify Him, Crucify Him.” We are no longer getting what we want out of them and are ready to throw them aside. God has a different criterion for leaders than giving us what we want.
Samuel, God’s chosen prophet, let Saul take a place in his heart. That happens. We let family and friend be leader because we love them. They appeal to our heart and emotions. That makes them okay for a leader. We do that. We like to like our leaders. God has a different criterion for leaders than those we like as friends and family. God picks David. Where is your David? Where is the one God choses for you?
Samuel, God’s chosen leader, let Saul take a place in his heart. The nation needed solutions. The people needed provision. Samuel was looking to a specific solution instead of God’s solution. We do that. We tell God what He is supposed to do, who we are supposed to marry, what car we are supposed to drive, what house we should live in, what job we should have. Where is your David? Where is the house God selected, the car, the job, the position?
Look for the David, when you look for a leader. Look for the David when you look for provision. David was not a perfect leader or a perfect solution, but He was God’s selection and anointed for the task. Sure, David tripped and fell, but he got back up. David continually pursued God.
Why did God pick David? Why did God pick Abraham? Why did God pick Moses? Why did God pick Paul? None of these fit the logical match for the position. David, a cast-off shepherd for king. Abraham, an idol worshipper and foreigner, for the father of faith and beginner of nations. Moses, a proud, arrogant Egyptian ruler, for a team builder and army builder of slaves. Paul, a religious fanatic murderer, for taking the gospel to the hardest places.
Here God picks David. Where is your, David? Abraham did not know the land but was to inherit it. Moses did not know the people or the language. Moses required Aaron to interpret for him not for the Egyptians but the Hebrews, the ones he would lead. Paul, a full Hebrew, is sent to Greeks and Romans. Each seems ill fitted to the task. Yet, God selected and equipped them.
Where is your David?
Are you making Samuel’s mistake? Do you have a list of item that have no ultimate bearing on God’s selection? Do you want a super preacher? Do you want someone who is bilingual in speech but Hispanic in family and culture or Euro in family and culture? Do you want someone who eats what you eat? Do you want a leader who will hold you back or lead you forward? Are you asking out of fear and selfishness or looking for a better life forward for your family and friends and neighbors? Are you asking for yourself or for the hundreds, who have not joined? Do you want someone who has a wife and son and daughter who can sing and wow you? Make you feel good and visit you in the hospital? Are you looking for a leader who is only able to lead 100 people, so he must be available whenever you call? Are you looking for your leader or God’s leader?
Listen to God’s selection. Isaiah 53 Who has believed our messageand to whom has the armof theLordbeen revealed? 2 He grew up before him like a tender shoot, and like a root out of dry ground.
He had no beauty or majesty to attract us to him, nothing in his appearance that we should desire him. 3 He was despised and rejected by mankind, a man of suffering, and familiar with pain. Like one from whom people hide their faces he was despised, and we held him in low esteem.
This is Jesus. Ugly, simple, single at 30, uninterested in getting married, a hated human. Misinterpreted? Hangs out in bars and with prostitutes and thieves. How is that for a leader?
Are you making Samuel’s mistake with your needs? Have you boxed God into a specific car you want or home or job? Are you treating God like He is Santa Claus? Give me what I want, God. I want to be God. I want to tell God how to think and what is best.
Let me tell you a story. 26 years ago, my wife and I were looking for a house. Our family was growing. Four children filled our small house. Our house would not sell. For three years, we could not sell our house. The frustration was huge. We found houses we loved, but could not sell ours to buy them. One house really spoke to us. God gave us specific verses related to that house. And we could not buy it. Finally, I made a deal with God. God if the house won’t sell by this date then we will take it off the market and just live here.
The date came. We had been on vacation and arrived from a long trip late in the day. At 10:45pm the realtor called and told us she sold the house. I told her if she had waited to the next morning the deal would have been off. We had an agreement.
What would we do? We had no house to buy. While we were on vacation, a house with the same floor plan as the house we loved came on the market. We paid 20% less than what it cost to build. We have lived in that house for 23 years and still enjoy it. Our children were raised in it. We celebrate holidays in it. It is the house God selected not the one we selected.
What about a David? What about a leader?
David is found out in the field with the sheep. He is a shepherd. He is a servant. Maybe he is down at the local car shop doing paint and body. Maybe he is a school teacher, who really loves families. He cares. He works hard and alone most of the time. He is not the most people friendly person you will find. Look for that kind of leader. Does he stay with the task when everyone else goes home?
David is found singing to God and talking to himself. His parents and brothers don’t want anything to do with him. Maybe he is a troublemaker. But he is unloved. But he worships God despite hardship. Look for that kind of leader. Does he stand under hardship? Does he work for the ungrateful and continue to smile?
But God goes and gets David and pours His spirit on him for the task ahead. David goes from the sheep field to a fight with the biggest, nastiest giant in the land. David is not a fighter except for when his sheep are threatened. It is this same motivation that moves him to attack Goliath. The giant comes against the people and David rises just like over the lion and the bear that come against his sheep. David will fight to protect. You need that kind of leader. Has he a reputation for protecting the fatherless, the single parents, the poor and hungry?
God goes and gets David and pours His spirit on him for the task ahead. One day he is a shepherd and then he kills a giant and then he becomes a leader of an army. He does not have warrior training. He does not have a master’s in business administration to lead a large organization. Yet, he learns quickly. Soon, Saul is worried this upstart will overtake his kingdom. David is a quick learner and submitted to God’s Spirit. You need that kind of leader. You need someone who is a quick learner, can change tactics with the needs of the community, and knows how to organize. You don’t need someone to fight with the tactics of yesterday. You need a visionary.
God goes and gets David and pours His Spirit on him for the task ahead. David is faithful. For years, he must live away from his designated spot. He must go into hiding to stay faithful. He will not speak badly of others. He will not gossip. You need that kind of leader. You need a man of integrity and faithful positive heart in the most impossible of situations.
Where is your David? He is in the field with the sheep waiting for you to get ready. He is ready to have the Spirit of God poured on Him from a praying, supportive team of people. It does not take many. Nobody believed in David when he started. God believed in David. David believed in David. His own father and brothers did not believe in him. Where is your David?
A man of integrity.
A man after God’s heart.
A man of vision for today and tomorrow.
A hard worker.
A persistent worker despite hardship.
A man of strong morals.
A man who protects the needs of all.
A man of positive action.
Quit looking for the handsome man, the perfect speaker, the perfect family, the one who makes you feel good, and the one who looks like you. Look for God’s man and God will anoint Him to be all you need when you need it and all the new people need when they need it.
Over the last two weeks, there have been deaths among our Hope Church family and friends. Each of these touches my heart with pain and grief for friends, family, and congregation. How do we process such moments? In every instance, the death was untimely and tragic. That is the nature of death. We never seem to be quite ready for it.
To help each of us move on to the next greatness of God for our lives, let’s consider three lessons each with three steps. As you process your grief and offer consolation to those that have lost close friend and family consider these.
Let Death Be Done and Life Be Lived.
Often we let death get personal. We ask one hundred, “What if I?”, questions that have no ready answers. This puts us in a down and dejected state and increases denial of the simple truth that it is appointed once for each person to die. Death will happen to all of us. This mortal body will die and our spirit will move to another plane of existence. Either heaven or hell waits our coming. What ifs won’t change the stark pain of physical death. Good decisions will open a better life for us and those we love.
Don’t Take The Blame
The blame for another’s death is not yours to own. God created a beautiful, death-free zone, called earth for the first man, Adam. Adam, along with Eve, corrupted the earth through rebellion and the result is still a beautiful creation, but now it resists our enjoyment and always ends in our death. The results of mistaken and disobedient existence (sin) outside God’s full plan is death. As humans, we entered a separation from God spiritually and a state of being that will end in physical death. You do not have the power to change either of those; however, you do have the privilege to accept the change of both of those for yourself.
Lack of faith and too much sin are not to blame. Don’t buy that easy out. People like to control the uncontrollable with cheap answers. These are more unanswerable, “What if?”, questions. Don’t let others put blame on you or anyone else by saying, “Well, they had sin in their life.” Or “Well, you should have had more faith.” Of course the situation of a sinful world ends in death. Jesus saw his good friend Lazarus die and be buried. Are you better than Jesus? Jesus saw his father, Joseph, die and be buried. Are you more loving than Jesus to his earthly father? Don’t let these answers land on your heart and rob your life of a future.
Live in what you know and increase in how you serve. Let death be a point of growth for you. Don’t linger in what you did not do or did not know. Move forward with a renewed vow to follow Christ more closely and enjoy a better life forward for yourself and others. It is not about what you did or did not do. It is about what you will do now and forware.
Don’t Linger Too Long with Questions
It is okay to ask yourself questions. Don’t linger. Some have quick answers. Some have no answers. Ask. Address. Move on.
What if I had taken some action to make them healthier or avoid an accident? You don’t know. Death may have come anyway or from another situation. You can’t control what you did or did not do in the past. Forgive yourself for being human and accept that you are not big enough to control all the points of destiny in the world. Everything is not in your control. Accept that.
Why did God not intervene and stop this? Now, there is a big question that usually has no answer. God’s thoughts are higher (bigger than we can understand) than our thoughts. Don’t second guess God. It will take you in an endless circle of questions our minds are too simple to understand. Accept that He looks toward you and every other person with only good intent.
What do I do now? That is a great question. Don’t linger with what you cannot change, have courage to address what you can. A good question is, “How do I place myself in the path of God’s plan in everything I do?” When you are walking in that path, He commits Himself to order your steps. That doesn’t mean you and others won’t die. You will and they will. But, you have assurance that it will happen inside of His plan and timing.
Live the Better Path Forward
Accept and Cherish The Gift of Life. God’s immediate response to Adam’s rebellion was to put in motion a plan of redemption. To redeem means to pay a price to get something out of where it is and put it in a better place. In the pawn shops are many cages where items are locked up. The owner can redeem her goods and put them back to personal use for a price. Our price of redemption was the life of Christ. It is paid. If we respond and accept, we can get into the better place. Jesus paid the price of redemption. We can chose to accept His gift and receive the better place of eternal life now and in the next life or we can chose to stay in the cage of death and separation. Along with eternal connection to the Father, now and in the next life (heaven), we are promised a resurrection into a new and eternal body in the future. The sting of death is not eternal for those that respond.
Allow Grief to Do It’s Job. Grief moves through us and enables us. Pain and sorrow are not bad. They are part of life. We hurt to the extent we love. Love is good and opens the joys of life. Grief is a part of love. Accept the death as real. Weep over the loss of one you loved. Make plans for the future, knowing they will not be in it with you. They have gone on and we must do the same. This process can take days and weeks and months. The initial pains are intense, but they do subside. They may revisit us on occasions. Don’t linger too longer. Allow the loss to heal and enjoy the precious gift of life you have.
Make plans for the future. Our life can be compared to standing on the top of a mountain on a clear day. We can look out over an endless terrain. In front of us may only be a few inches of a cliff that separates us from the endless terrain. Our life on earth is like those few inches. Once we walk them we drop into an endless life ahead. Enjoy the few inches and remember the life ahead is endless. In Christ our enjoyment can be eternal. The key is in Christ.
“He who has a why to live for can bear with almost any how” (Man’s Search for Meaning, 121). Victor Frankel
What pain pushes you into yourself? We do that. We retreat into our world and our need when pain pushes. Hope will bring us out. Hope will draw us closer to God instead of closer to self.
Our nation has pain. There is the pain of being asocial. We are a nation of Facebook and Twitter and LinkedIn and gaming and netflix. Researchers and health professionals alarm at the impact of constant stimulation that overstresses youth to the point of needing medication. Dr’s increasingly point to our disassociation and electronic trends as roots of further social disorder.
“Children or teens who are “revved up” and prone to rages or—alternatively—who are depressed and apathetic have become disturbingly commonplace. Chronically irritable children are often in a state of abnormally high arousal, and may seem “wired and tired.” That is, they’re agitated but exhausted. Because chronically high arousal levels impact memory and the ability to relate, these kids are also likely to struggle academically and socially….
Time and again, I’ve realized that regardless of whether there exists any “true” underlying diagnoses, successfully treating a child with mood dysregulation today requires methodically eliminating all electronics use for several weeks—an “electronics fast” to allow the nervous system to “reset.”
If done correctly, this intervention can produce deeper sleep, a brighter and more even mood, better focus and organization, and an increase in physical activity. The ability to tolerate stress improves, so meltdowns diminish in both frequency and severity. The child begins to enjoy the things they used to, is more drawn to nature, and imaginary or creative play returns. In teens and young adults, an increase in self-directed behavior is observed—the exact opposite of apathy and hopelessness.” Victoria Dunkely MD
Our nation has pain. There is the pain of amoral existence. Some states report active belief through church attendance below 5%. Nationally it is 16% and expected to drive lower. Just a half a century ago this was 60%. We had a moral standard of respect of life and decency toward others and self. Moral compass gives stability. Moral compass gives a staff on which we can rest in hard moments of indecision. Moral compass provides a rally point. There is no accepted moral compass at a time when our immigration is at all-time highs. How do you assimilate into nothing? We need a national ethic and morality and conscience more than we need a wall of separation.
Our nation has pain. There is the pain of amarital community. 40% of our children go to bed without dad in the home. 41% of new births are into never married situations. The impact is huge. Poverty, criminal behavior, emotional and mental distress, school performance, suicide and more key off of fatherlessness. We are birthing a generation with no chance of a normal or peaceful life.
Our nation has pain. That pain is a mess. Intimate partner violence and intimate terrorism show up in 1 of 3 women. Sexual assault is 1 of 4 women by age 16. The highest rates of domestic violence are with those 20-29. The angst and anger is violent. We are crying in our homes for solutions. This is not about percentages and political punditry. This is about me and my house.
Yet, you are faithful. You are doing what you know to do in faithful obedience and sacrifice. With the pains, each of us is impacted. A father, mother, sister, brother, child, cousin, or you is impacted. Why? We live in this pained world and it touches us and we bleed.
Stand there for a moment. Where has this pain touched you? Who around you is impacted? Where are you personally impacted?
We can feel rejected of God and cry, “Unfair.” He is with you. He is here. Hope points to answers and secures a path. Put your hope in God and in His presence.
Most often our experience of pain comes from living apart from God’s influence and presence. In Christ, we have choices. We can be in the world and not of the world. We can make choices that give us stronger whys in the land of hows. He has not left us on our own. He has not abandoned us.
For God is not unjust to forget your work and labor of love which you have shown toward His name, in that you have ministered to the saints, and do minister. Hebrews 6:10
This hope we have as an anchor of the soul, both sure and steadfast, and which enters the Presence behind the veil, where the forerunner has entered for us, even Jesus, having become High Priest forever according to the order of Melchizedek. Hebrews 6:19-20 NKJV
So let’s talk about how hope works behind the veil. When I am in His presence, I am secure. I am hopeful. I can see a future with beauty and success.
Yesterday, we spent the day in the beautiful New England countryside and on to the coast of Maine. When we allow ourselves to enjoy the beauty of God’s creation, we are refreshed. Those images will walk with us for decades. It is good. Dian and I have a small lake cabin in Oklahoma in the wooded part of the state for this reason. I love to watch the birds and listen to the stillness. Whenever I post a calm or strikingly beautiful picture of nature on facebook, it gets the most likes. We like the calm. We need the calm and the beauty. Is not the presence of God more beautiful than nature? Have you ever enjoyed Him beyond any touch natural beauty can produce?
How often do you stop the noise and the pain and let God be God? This world with all the pain and problems that prick and provoke is there. It is there 24/7. In the middle of all of that, we have the privilege to walk with an amazing God of light and joy. His overwhelming presence permeates and puts us on top and covered. Yet, this is not some Pollyanna denial of a painful world, but a determined joy in the face of assault.
Brutally Confront The Facts
It is unrealistic to ignore the pain. It is incorrect to deny reality. After an opponent to Abraham Lincoln painted an unrealistic view, Lincoln responded. “Now a horse has four legs. If I call his tail a leg, how many legs does the horse have?
One in the audience answered, “Five.”
“No,” Lincoln responded. “The horse has four legs. To call a tail a leg doesn’t change the fact it is a tail.”
Don’t deny reality. Face it. Deal with it. Put yourself in the presence of God and allow Him to adjust and protect and secure and strengthen.
But, Phil, it just keeps coming back and I can’t seem to hold my footing. It drags me into wrong action and disturbed and depressive days.
Walk with me into God’s Story
In the Old Testament the priest would go into the Holy of Holies on assignment. There was great ritual and preparation for his time in the presence of God. There was great fear. If he did one thing wrong, put on the wrong piece of clothing, or touched a forbidden object prior to going into God’s presence, he would be struck dead. The people would tie a rope around his leg and put bells on his robe. If the bells quit ringing, they would pull him out, dead. He was anchored in the world. He had to come out. He could not stay in God’s presence. The world owned him.
In Jesus, we have a new and better life. Each of us is called into the presence of God 24/7. It is no longer about one person going for all. Jesus did that and opened the path. We don’t pull Him out, He pulls us in. His Holy Spirit is provided for 24/7 presence and provision to all. Yet, we don’t live in that awareness. We allow the world, the pain, and the problems to displace us from our rightful position. We drift from our anchor point.
Watch for a moment what is happening in this verse. Hope is an anchor. Anchors have ropes fastened to a point. As the current of life pummels our bow, the anchor point holds us steady. If I want to be closer to the anchor point, I pull in the rope and shorten the extended line.
Hebrews 3:6 But Christ is faithful as the Son over God’s house. And we are his house, if indeed we hold firmly to our confidence and the hope in which we glory.
In life we pass from pain to pain and from victory to victory. At each of those moments there is opportunity to fasten the rope tighter into our grasp. If I want to get a good grip on a rope, I put a knot into it. My grip, my hold is more secure and firm. Every test in life, we can secure our grip on hope. Every time we see God provide for us in a hard moment, we can station our feet and tie another knot in the rope for a future need. Whether it is a pain to which God applies a solution or a victory in growth, each can become a knot that secures my grip and shortens the distance between the anchor point and me.
Our journey can be a series of choices to draw closer to God, to live in His presence. Our journey can also be a series of choices to drift. I can chose to gripe and groan and complain and my rope will stretch and extend and I will float further from my anchor point.
Make the choice at every point of pain and every point of victory to shorten the rope. The anchor point is in the realized presence of God. In the presence of the Lord there is joy forevermore. Increase your dependence on Him in prayer and tie a knot. Build a closer relationship with a fellow Christian and tie a knot. Hammer scripture into your memory and meditation and tie a knot. Increase your personal and public worship times and tie a knot. Tell others of His goodness and tie and knot. Give out of the abundance He provides and tie a knot. Rest and trust Him in faith in hard moments and tie a knot. Live as a Christian disciple and tie a knot. The life of discipleship is not about obedience and duty, it is about drawing closer to God and He draws closer to you. The distance to the anchor point becomes less and less. In time of need you can pull in the line and be to that point faster when you live a life of tying the knot.
My rope is extended. I’ve not lived the Christian discipleship provided for me in Christ. Ah, the grace of God has been provided. You see, the anchor point is Jesus in the presence of God. We are no longer anchored in the world. Before Jesus, that anchor would pull us back into the world. Now, Jesus will pull you back into His presence. He sees you drifting. You have hope. He will pull you into His presence as you drift. His grace is huge. Of course it is better to live close to the anchor and we will have fewer pains and fewer defeats. But, He is on your side. He is the anchor and He will pull you into His presence even if you chose to drift when your hope is in Him.
In this world of toils and snares tell me Jesus just who cares. None but thee Lord, none but thee.
Summary: Life pummels. Christ in me, the Hope of Glory, anchors me in the presence of God. Joy and answers are in His presence. Christian discipleship will pull me closer to the presence of God.
Live your life of Christian Discipleship in hope and healing. Tie a knot. Every opportunity. Tie a knot. Keep the rope on your anchor short and your time in His presence continual. Tie a knot. Don’t drift.
If you find yourself drifting, call out in hope. He will draw you in. Your anchor is in His presence.
In churches we have Healing and Praise and Prayer services to stir our faith and focus. The Spirit of Christ is always ready. It is us that need to turn off our distractions and turn on our receptivity.
I spent 7 hours yesterday in praise and prayer for you between activities. There is a price to “always on”. But the cost is much higher. Sickness, depression, pain, lack, divorce, fatherlessness, anger, violence..BE GONE
The Touch..El Toque ..Shaken
Acts 4:31 NKJV And when they had prayed, the place where they were assembled together was shaken; and they were all filled with the Holy Spirit, and they spoke the word of God with boldness.
Boldness shakes up from within. The Holy Spirit pours over us and shakes boldness out of us. We become more forthright because our fear is gone.
Seek Him. Be ready to be bold. Be ready to be shaken. In His presence are answers. Those answers will change you.
The Touch..El Toque.. Fire in the Soul.
Jude 20 But ye, beloved, building up yourselves on your most holy faith, praying in the Holy Ghost,21 Keep yourselves in the love of God, looking for the mercy of our Lord Jesus Christ unto eternal life.
A touch of the Holy Spirit ignites fire in the soul to close the gap with God at every opportunity. Nothing quenches your life except communion with Him on a spiritual level.
Do you feel like that?
Is your thirst for God unquenchable?
Some want to avoid the richness of God in exchange for a comfortable walk. He will disturb you when He touches you.
Believe. Ask. Receive. Live.
He will expand your view of life. He will make your everyday go away and replace it with powerday.
2pm Sunday/Domingo Marietta FRESH Services
“No Pentecostal person ought to get out of bed without being lost in the Spirit and speaking in tongues as the Spirit gives utterance… with a constant filling, you will speak in tongues morning, noon and night. As you live in the Spirit when you walk down the steps of the house where you live, the devil will have to go before you.”
Have you found the powerful young man or woman in your sphere of influence ready to do something big? Community Transformation Initiative reaches all ages and all stages. CTI connects with government, education, community, congregation, family, and individual. I like that and I support that.
Painted across our mental landscape are pictures of angry youth and twenty-somethings. Really? Is that all there is? The media is far too busy destroying hope. Yes, this is a generation of fatherless and increasingly parentless powerhouses. The potential is warped and pained. It is potential. It is power waiting to be unleashed.
As a professional, we can get skewed visions of this generation. Our own home is prim and proper. Our friends are prim and proper. As a professional did you ever realize you are the minority? The majority lives in pain. Violence and abuse is a norm. Abandoned and aborted relationships are the norm. Drugs and alcohol and godlessness are the norm. Unlimited potential power is in the hands of the pained. Dare you ignore that? It will be released. It is being released. Choose to be a part of releasing it in positive directions.
The young woman in the center of this picture lives in Matamoros, Mexico. She lives in a city where kidnapping is an industry. She lives in a neighborhood ruled by the dominant cartel. She lives in a city under martial law. She is a flower of hope. She is unlimited positive potential power waiting to be blossomed and unleashed.
For six years my team and I have worked with a men’s recovery center and two congregations in Matamoros. Youth have grown strong in this environment. Those that chose to embrace positive change have learned that nothing is impossible.
While working with CAREVI (Casa A Restauracion Y La Vida), I have watched her family change neighborhood after neighborhood. During a time of powerful prayer and teaching, she walked with me for over and hour so she could see close up the hand of God. She came out of the crowd and into her place.
Nothing positive happens without purposeful push and pull. Vicky will never be the same. I will continue coaching her over facebook. She already has been watching and learning from me in that venue as does her whole family. Her father pushed the first Dad’s University in Mexico and continues to make a difference.
CTI is active in 34 state houses, Matamoros, Gainesville, Tx, Marietta, Ok, and the OKC Metro every week. Join us with financial support, professional services, or get personally engaged hands on. Do something. Unleash the potential. Help someone get out of the crowd and into their place.
Greet greatness in your family and faith with these 12 bite sized solution segments. Each is only 2 or 3 minutes. Watch one at supper time with your family as part of your family prayer over the next two weeks. Talk about it in your home. Let God build something new.
1-6 Explain God’sVision For You andYour Family
7-9 Explain 3 Traps Can Rob You
10-12 Explain 3 Tips To Hold and Help Realize Family Vision
These truths are foundational for family. Grab them. Hold them. Tamp them into your heart.
Transformers Prayer: I will meet with God on His terms.
I will get what I need from God. I will give what I get to others. I will meet with God on His terms with His people. I will get what I need from God.
The Lord is in His temple and He is not confused about it.
Habakkuk 2: 18 “Of what value is an idol carved by a craftsman? Or an image that teaches lies? For the one who makes it trusts in his own creation; he makes idols that cannot speak. 19 Woe to him who says to wood, ‘Come to life!’ Or to lifeless stone, ‘Wake up!’ Can it give guidance? It is covered with gold and silver; there is no breath in it.” 20 The Lord is in his holy temple; let all the earth be silent before him.
Most of us would feel odd praying to a statue. Some might have a statue or mosaic or picture or symbol to remind them of the faithfulness of God or some other attribute. But to pray and expect the statue to answer our prayer is foolishness. But we do it every day.
What? What does it mean to pray to idols?
We do it every day. We push the Lord into our box and ask Him for answers. We pray like this, “God if you will just ______________ then I will _______________.” That is an idol. We tell the Lord to meet with us on our terms and place ourselves in the position of God and Him in the position of servant. The idol is us and our conditions and our terms. Or we pray like this, “God I need you to _________ for my friend _______________.” And give no consideration to the promises and principles of His revealed truth. We just want Him to do something we would like regardless of His will and His ways. We push God into our terms and conditions. The problem with that approach besides the fact that it doesn’t work is that God is not confused about what He wants to do. He does not need our instructions, directions, cajoling, or confusion. Meet with Him on His terms.
“Let us give up our work, our thoughts, our plans, ourselves, our lives, our loved ones, our influence, our all, right into His hand, and then, when we have given all over to Him, there will be nothing left for us to be troubled about, or to make trouble about.” (Hudson Taylor’s Choice Sayings: A Compilation from His Writings and Addresses. London: China Inland Mission, n.d., 52.)
Mark 8:34 Then he called the crowd to him along with his disciples and said: “Whoever wants to be my disciple must deny themselves and take up their cross and follow me.
This matter of having the Lord respond to my prayer is not as easy as we would like. It is not complicated. No, it is not complicated at all. You don’t need to memorize, “13 Steps To Answered Prayer” or wait for 40 days in the desert to get clarity. You do need to submit yourself to God and allow Him absolute authority and liberty to rewrite your thoughts. Meet with Him on His terms.
So what are some of His terms?
He is committed to healing and deliverance from evil influences: Matthew 8:16-18 (NIV) When evening came, many who were demon-possessed were brought to him, and he drove out the spirits with a word and healed all the sick. This was to fulfill what was spoken through the prophet Isaiah: “He took up our infirmities and bore our diseases.”
He is committed to peace of heart and mind: Philippians 4:4-7Rejoice in the Lord always. I will say it again: Rejoice! Let your gentleness be evident to all. The Lord is near. Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus
He is committed to release the gospel with deep conviction: 1 Thessalonians 1:4-6 (NIV) For we know, brothers and sisters[a] loved by God, that he has chosen you, because our gospel came to you not simply with words but also with power, with the Holy Spirit and deep conviction. You know how we lived among you for your sake. You became imitators of us and of the Lord, for you welcomed the message in the midst of severe suffering with the joy given by the Holy Spirit
He has other commitments. I need to understand them as I pray. 2 Corinthians 1:20 For no matter how many promises God has made, they are “Yes” in Christ. And so through him the “Amen” is spoken by us to the glory of God.
When I come to Him on His terms, I can be assured in faith that He will respond on His terms.
John 14:14 You may ask me for anything in my name, and I will do it.
John 16:23 In that day you will no longer ask me anything. Very truly I tell you, my Father will give you whatever you ask in my name.
John 16:24 Until now you have not asked for anything in my name. Ask and you will receive, and your joy will be complete
I will meet with Him on His terms. I will find His heart and match it. I will find His will and live it. I will meet with Him on His terms.
When developing a mission to reach the working poor, it seemed we never had enough food, but we always were throwing some away. Based on the knowledge that God satisfies the afflicted soul and he who gives to the poor lends to the Lord, we set a principle. “God can’t fill a full barn. So give away all we have every day.” As we agreed with God in principle and practice over a few years we moved to giving 10 times the amount of food to 10 times the number of people. It was agreement with His terms of generosity that moved the ability to serve others.
Discussion Questions For You and Your Group:
Where has prayer failed you? Is it possible you did not take the time to get in alignment with His terms?
What is God asking you to do for which you have hesitated? Are there areas of your life in which you are resisting His direction? You know it, but hold back your obedience?
Do you have a prayer you would like to submit to His terms? Are you ready to meet with Him on His terms?