Groovin’ the Gauntlet

“For I reckon that the sufferings of this present time are not worthy to be compared with the glory which shall be revealed in us” Romans 8:18

The Gauntlet, the reality of the answer of the age old question, what is the meaning of life. That is the answer, not quite what you would think is it?

We are all souls with God, who is eternal, no beginning, no ending, self -existing and ever existent  until we are born to this earth.

As God told Jeremiah, first chapter- fifth verse: “BEFORE I formed thee in the BELLY, I KNEW THEE; and BEFORE thou camest forth out of the womb I SANCTIFIED (set apart) THEE, AND I ORDAINED (appointed)THEE A PROPHET UNTO NATIONS.

As with the names that were written BEFORE the earth was formed. Our souls just as they are eternal, were with Him until time for whatever the reason, to be born onto the gauntlet field of this world.

1st Ephesians 1:4: “According as He hath chosen us in Him BEFORE the FOUNDATIONS OF THE WORLD, that we should be holy and without blame before him in love.”

So we are born, hit the ground and IT IS ON.

 The gauntlet is formed against us BEFORE we can even hit the ground running, because the enemy knows more about you than you do!

The gauntlet of the “tares”, the weeds the devil planted among the children, on one side and facing you on the other side the demonic forces of hell, so you start your run between the tongue wagging finger pointers running themselves, trying to set those stumbling blocks before you, every imaginable scheme will be hatched for their use as a weapon against you, just trying to knock you down with everything they’ve got.

So you are running as fast as you can trying to keep one eye on the course in front of you and one eye on the weapons coming after you but then you see on the other side of your course the demonic forces armed and ready with snares and traps set every step of the way and many, many archers with their bows poised and the fiery darts ready to rain down, the farther you make it the more they are gonna hit from both sides, the “holier than thous” just dying to see you fall so they can tell all their buddies they were right about you the whole time, the devil starts bringing out bigger and bigger giants, more and more archers and sends the storms chasing you.

Sound pretty unbelievable?  Ah, Jesus said “for this cause” He was born into the world.  His cause being to DIE on a cross, not only die but to be tortured, humiliated, and rejected, his gauntlet beginning with his forty days in the wilderness, which HE MADE IT THROUGH HIS FORTY DAYS, he remained completely spotless and sinless and us being human CAN never achieve that, BUT we are to strive and stay on that course.

Now add in just the reality of living, grief, sorrow, heartache, because it rains on the just and the unjust, EVERYONE WILL RUN THE GAUNTLET.

But those with Christ have an expected end to this course.

This is the reason we are commanded to NOT look to the right or to the left, and NEVER EVER LOOK BACK, only forward, if we don’t look to either side we can’t lose focus worrying about what is getting ready to hit us and WE ARE COMMANDED more than once to not look back, if you do you will see what is gaining on you and you will stumble over those blocks that has been placed before you.

Your entire reason for living is to bring glory to the Father and to help as many as you can run the gauntlet that has been set before them by the god of this world  (2nd Corinthians  4:4).

Paul was very apt in describing his gauntlet and we often feel that our burdens are heavy but I know for me, I gain so much encouragement from reading what they suffered and being blessed to read the end of their stories and how God used all those things to enlarge the Kingdom.

2 Corinthians 11:23-30 ” Of the Jews five times I received forty stripes save one (they thought it merciful to give 39 lashes as opposed to the 40 you were sentenced to, so at the time he wrote this Paul HAD RECEIVED A TOTAL OF 195 lashes) . 

Thrice was I beaten with rods, once was I stoned, thrice I suffered shipwreck, a night and a day I have been in the deep; journeys often, in perils of waters, IN PERILS BY THE BRETHREN, in perils in the city, in perils in the wilderness, in perils in the sea, IN PERILS AMONG FALSE BRETHREN ( notice both groups listed, the ones who ARE your brethren that set those stumbling blocks and the FALSE brethren sent by the enemy). 

In weariness and painfulness, in watchings (sleeplessness) often, in hunger, in thirst, in fastings often, in cold and nakedness.

BESIDES THOSE THINGS (other things) WHICH COME UPON ME DAILY, the care of all the churches.

Who is weak, and I am not weak? Who is offended (MADE TO STUMBLE), and I burn ( BURN WITH INDIGNATION) not?

IF I must needs glory, I WILL GLORY OF THE THINGS WHICH CONCERN MINE INFIRMITIES.”

 What he was saying if he survived all these things and yet glorified God in all them through showing love to others, how could ANYONE complain of their own sufferings?

He learned the groove of the gauntlet,  he learned to accept it for what it is and go with it.    

 He knew that is had to be ran, to fight it just held him up and there was people whose lives would be changed, there were others to help.

His purpose was NOT to fight in retaliation those who manned his gauntlet but to show the love listed above, to grab onto those who had fallen or were wounded by fiery darts and pull them with him to the finish line.

Acts 16 tells us of the arrest of Paul and Silas for doing just that, praying for a possessed girl to be delivered, this enraging those who were using her possession to make money through fortune telling, they were beaten and thrown in prison.

Paul had learned to be content in ALL situations and learned to REJOICE in affliction because the more he suffered for the Gospel, the GREATER the POWER OF GOD rested upon him, so with excruciating lash wounds on their backs they STILL sang and praised God, this pleasing God who sent an earthquake and opened every cell, now they could have left, completely free and thought “Ha, Ha the jerks get what they deserve for beating us.”  

BUT when Paul saw that the jailer was going to commit suicide because they had all escaped, Paul called to him NOT TO harm himself that they were all there.

That is that love and the jailer and his entire family was saved because Paul knew how to play the gauntlet and HE DID EXACTLY what GOD WANTED HIM TOO.

Just as Jesus “who for the joy SET BEFORE HIM ENDURED THE CROSS, DESPISING THE SHAME, and is sat down at the right hand of the Father.”

Those of Hebrews 11, who should give anyone hope and courage to press on.

Learn to groove that gauntlet, play it smoother than any jazz tune ever played.

The prize we seek is NOT in this world.

It is in the next and the true secret is what they knew, press on, press on, press on.

Pick yourself up, let the tears fly as you run, but RUN, RUN with everything you got and grab on to all you see who have fallen in their own race against the gauntlet, pull them, drag them whatever you have to do to help them to that finish line, but never ever look at those opposing you just look to the Author and Finisher of your faith.

He made it through His forty days and Forty nights and then He ran that gauntlet that hell itself had prepared and he died running it BUT HE ROSE and FOREVER SHALL REIGN!

Φλογιζω/ NBJ 2015 

Original post date 12/04/15 revisited 07/01/2020 As you go through your day and your week, please remember that this world and the troubles of this world are temporary, just as our first verse assures us and in these awful days in which we live set yourself with one purpose and one goal and that goal is this, a reminder of what Jesus told us,NEVER LET THEM STEAL YOUR CROWN.

“How do I love thee?”

“Hear, O Israel; The Lord our God is one Lord; And thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thine heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy might. And these words,which I command thee this day, shall be in thine heart.” Deuteronomy 6:4-6

Old school groove, “How do I love thee? Let me count the ways” that one has been around for ages! But it is  wonderful question, once Jesus gives us those new hearts and leads us in His paths, we are met with that question, once the true realization of His presence and love is known to you, as He said, He will give you a heart to KNOW him, then we are faced with the humanly overwhelming question of how do you relay your love back to the God of the universe, who created heaven and earth , and who can hold time, space, and eternity in the palm of His hand and if He wanted, He could speak one word and completely destroy every single thing that now exists?

Obviously, as mere mortals, it would seem that we have nothing, nothing to offer as a token of our love in return, our love to Him for creating us, caring for us, and most of all dying on a cross for us so that we could be saved, and never giving up on us.

So how do we love Him and what exactly is it that He wants? Well, we are created in His image and He wants the same thing we want from Him, He wants our love and our heart, and He does not want a little portion of our hearts, you know a spot that remains empty while the main space is taken by other people, other things that we cling too while He gets whatever love is left. He will not go for that, not now, not ever.

No He wants ALL our heart or none of our heart, that is why he said to seek Him with our WHOLE heart. he wants a real relationship and not to be a God in the distance in our lives, He wants fellowship with us and this has become so messed up in the world thinking. He is love BUT He also tells us if we love Him, we WILL keep His commandments and when you think about it, there is nothing on that list that is unreasonable and every single command He has ever handed down is FOR OUR GOOD.

So we have to get into that thinking that He IS love and He IS our friend but we are also required by that love to do as He asks. Our world has major rebellion problems on this one, it is taught as well He loves us, we can do what makes us happy, No, that is NOT loving Him, that is trying to compare His goodness toward us with some sort of fairy godfather who grants your every whim. And that is in no way loving Him or respecting Him, that is loving our flesh and being so arrogant as to think our DESIRES are of a higher value than His Holiness, and that kinda thinking will get a person a quick trip to the grave.

“But the hour cometh, and now IS, when true worshippers shall worship the Father in spirit and in truth; for the Father seeketh such to worship him. GOD IS A SPIRIT: and they that worship him must worship him in SPIRIT AND IN TRUTH.” John 4:23,24

So we know with Jesus arrival on earth, all things were changed and no longer were prayers and sacrifice made by a priest needed and all who truly believe could be allowed entry into the Holy of Holies through his presence with the gift of the Holy Ghost.

This is where we must worship in TRUTH, truth to who He is, truth of His commands, truth of His word, and keeping our lives and actions subjected into and under that TRUTH. We worship Him in Spirit, in His presence  in the “places” of salvation:

“But thou shalt call thy walls Salvation, and thy gates Praise” Isaiah 60:18(a)

Believers are surrounded by those walls of salvation in your worship time and praise is the gate by which we enter and there you worship in fellowship, love, and adoration and there you know Him and receive joy, peace, and assurance and rest from your troubles. 

So here is a scriptural checklist:

Deuteronomy 10:12 : “And now Israel, what doth the Lord thy God require of thee? But (only) to fear the Lord thy God, to walk in all his ways, and to love him, and to serve the Lord thy God WITH ALL THY HEART and ALL THY SOUL.” 

Deuteronomy 11:13-14:  “And it shall come to pass, if ye shall hearken diligently unto my commandments which I command you this day, to love the Lord your God, and to serve him with all your heart and with all your soul, That I will give you the rain of your land in his due season, and the first rain and the latter rain, that thou mayest gather  in thy corn, thy wine, and thine oil.”

That is His promises to us of all good things, and the word of God, the bread of life, his blessings, His anointing. So now we answer the question.. “My Dear Lord HOW do I love thee?  We enter into your presence with thanksgiving and praise, and in the safety of your pavilion surrounded by those walls of your salvation we will allow ourselves to be taught, loved, and led!

This is the how you count the ways! Seek Him, Love Him, Honor Him, and get to know Him, and let His blessings and His mercy transform you!

Φλογίζω Σαλπιζω NBJ 2016

Revisited 02/07/2020 

 

“Kidron calling”

“And when Jesus had spoken these words, he went forth with his disciples over the brook Cedron (Kidron) where there was a garden, into which he entered, he and his disciples. And Judas also, which betrayed him, knew the place: for Jesus ofttimes resorted thither (met there) with his disciples.” John 18:1,2 

Picking this to tie in with my last post. this scripture took place at the time of the arrest of Jesus, after he had given the disciples warning that they should watch and pray that they would not enter into temptation.

Now is a good time to point out that as Jesus went forth into this place, He was on His way to his arrest, torture, humiliation, and ultimate crucifixion.

ALL this laid just beyond the crossing over that brook BUT this was also the path of His divine purpose for coming to this earth, as He answered Pilate… To this end was I born, and for this cause I came into the world,  and the enemy, just like Judas in this passage, always knows where we go for comfort and just where to find us in a crisis, and that is when he hits us with all he has and it’s like that button, he knows how and exactly where to do the most damage.

But FIRST I really want to point out that Jesus is an exception to all the rules. He is God and when He came here in human form as a sacrifice for all of us, He did so completely sinless.

He NEVER committed sin or even thought a wrong thought, so it was NEVER a question of falling with Him, as it is for us. BUT as He also told us that The disciple is not above his master, nor the servant above his lord. and we are to follow His lead in how He handled every situation and circumstance in life and even in the face of death.

And there is so much for us to learn in crossing over our own brook “Kidron” and if we are called, we are going to have to cross that brook.

We can a learn that from David’s story 2 Samuel chapters fifteen and sixteen, to give the background on it, this WAS due to David falling into temptation, because of his affair with Bathsheba and the essential “hit” he put on his own solider Uriah in an attempt to cover his tracks, he had been told that the sword would NEVER leave his house, so even though he had repented and reconciled to God he was still under that judgment and this story took place as he was fleeing from his son who WAS one of the evils that would arise from his own house against him.

If possible please read these chapters to get the jest of this story because I am just using a few verses to get to this point, but it is a story I have used many times to make many different points and so much can be learned on some many level from David’s ordeal.

I am starting scripture coming into the part of the story when most had turned against David and it actually says that Absalom “stole the hearts of the men of Israel” and as he prepared to overtake his father’s throne, David and those whose were faithful to him were forced to flee and this is where decisions were being made.

2 Samuel 15: 21-23 : “And Ittai answered the king, and said, As the Lord liveth, and as my lord the king liveth, surely in what place my lord the king shall be, whether in death or life, even there shall thy servant be.

And David said to Ittai, Go and pass over. And Ittai the Gittite passed over, and all his men, and all the little ones that was with him.

And ALL the country wept with a loud voice,and all the people passed over,the king himself passed over the brook Kidron (CALLED),and all the people passed over, toward the way of the wilderness.”

What really jumps out at me is the similarity between Ittai’s pledge of allegiance to David and Peter’s words to Jesus and one of the literal meanings given for Kidron is “CALLED” and as you go on with that story, David was hit so hard just in these few chapters, this ONE instance of a PERIOD in his life, he was chased, cursed, hated but he was learning something, and you got to remember WHO David was and what he had ALREADY learned from the Lord.

By this point in his life, he had been in battle after battle, fought Goliath, survived Saul’s hatred and had been anointed three times to be king and David knew what is was to be afraid and he knew what it was to desperately seek God, he knew what is was to  trust and he knew what is was to encourage himself when he felt a million miles away. But by the point this all came into play against him he had gotten a little out of practice keeping those things he had learned fresh in his mind and most importantly fresh in his heart.

As he and all his people passed over the brook and they all went toward the WAY of the wilderness, his flesh began to die, when he just accepted the things being thrown at him without cursing back or flying into a rage and wanting to retaliate, when he just kept on crossing the brook of the called his enemies were defeated and his throne rightfully restored.

Not to say that there wasn’t PAIN, serious, serious pain, as all these crossings were made with tears and sorrow.

Over the past few weeks I have thought so much about what Jesus told Peter, when He said The Spirit truly is ready but the flesh is weak  and I have come to believe of the many lessons we learn from that scripture that the biggest, hardest lesson to grasp is this, that our spirit, the part of us that loves God, longs for His presence and wants nothing more than to please Him and be in His will can BE completely given over to Him but our human side can still have a lot of catching up to do, it can be very weak and must be strengthened BEFORE we can enter into those places that He wants us to travel.

And when you think of it, imagine Peter and ALL the disciples, hanging out with Jesus day and night, being in the midst of Him and the miracles and Him giving them that authority over demons and diseases BUT He was right there with them or at least they knew He was close by and would come to the rescue just like He did when He rebuked their lack of faith and taught them the need for fasting and prayer when they could not cast the demon out of the young boy and the father had to bring him to Jesus Himself. (Matthew 17:14-21)

So how much harder would it be for them when they had to have the faith to believe for these and greater works in His name and believe for that power to come when they asked in His name when He would no longer be by their side on this earth?

He was not only their teacher, He was also their best friend and even though they knew who He was and is, and they saw with their own eyes miracles and resurrections of the dead, nothing could ever have prepared them for the transitions between heaven and earth that would take place.

Their spirits were ready, that is why He gave them the extra comfort of adding TRULY when He told them but the “flesh” part, the human side had to be strengthened or otherwise their minds could have never withstood the transition that they also would have to make on that journey with Him.

Think about that… ALL of this was new, it was new to EVERYONE and if you put yourself in their shoes at the time and ask how would they react when they would no longer see Him or touch Him in the physical realm but be aware of His invisible presence and would actually feel Him in their souls.

NOTHING could have ever prepared them for that, it is not a shock that they stood “gazing up” when He went back to heaven, they were trying to reason it all in their heads when it cannot be reasoned and they would have to learn how to navigate their lives and fulfilling His call on their lives in a way they could have never possibly imagined.

And when the pain, the sorrow and the persecution would come that flesh would have to be under submission to the spirit or else that flesh would cost callings and how that submission comes is in one word…acceptance… and I’ll leave that right there for now.

Thank you for reading and thanks for all your prayers!

God Bless you with a wonderful week!

Φλογιζω Σαλπιζω NBJ2018 /  Repost 11/16/2019

 

BEACON

“Holding forth the word of life, that I may rejoice in the day of Christ, that I have not run my race in vain, neither laboured I in vain.” Philippians: 2:16

I was on my way home a few days ago and I passed by a church that I have passed  by probably thousands of times by now and I have often just truly marveled at its presence and beauty. Beauty that everyone NOTICES because this particular church looks likes something from a Hallmark movie.

It kinda meets you at the top of a steep, curvy road and suddenly there it is, absolutely beautiful with the backdrop of nothing but sky, it’s beautiful steeple adorned with the cross that just seems to almost kiss the sky as a beacon for tired and weary travelers as if to say “You are almost there” and once you have “topped” that little hill you then see green fields and gorgeous mountains and valleys in the backdrop and it is spectacular.

I always admire it but for some reason the other day, it just hit me, what a BEACON, what a sign of HOPE that is! The little church in the middle of nowhere, and the beautiful, unassuming, simple little cross speaking the most profound and ageless message of the of all time.

Holding forth in all of its simplistic but profound beauty the simple truth that we all need here on this earth.

The message so simple and that so often gets completely lost in all our debates and our deep philosophical studying of scriptures and theology as we vainly believe we need to understand something so much deeper that has already been revealed and revealed in such perfection that it is said “Even a child can understand” and we can lose sight of all that truly matters.

Jesus Christ. his birth, his life, his death, and his glorious resurrection and his soon coming reign on this earth.

That is the word to be held forth and as we know, “preaching of the cross IS foolishness to them that perish.”

But that scripture never said that by that token we should stop preaching it.

And believe me, I am not downing anyone here or their preaching, thoughts, or ministry.

I have had my share of carefully dotting every “I” and crossing every “T” for fear of ridicule and backlash from  those whom all in ministry suffer, “fruit inspectors” as my brother calls them, and we are to truly “know a tree by the fruit it bears” but there are times  when there are those who just want to core your apple and jerk out your seeds ONLY because they want to find anything possible to accuse you to the Lord and to “prove” to themselves that they were “right about you” and you were never “what you are supposed to be anyway” and you all know this because I know most of you have been through it.

Really doesn’t matter where it comes from as long as we make sure that it goes!

“Foolishness” to the world or not the cross MUST be preached, in the beauty, the simplicity, the pain, the sorrow, and above all the victory that the cross represents.

It also represents the love of the Holiest of beings, the Father of all of creation, who looked down in MERCY at those he had created watching them as they kick, punch, fight, and do every manner of evil and violence one toward another and in his supreme love, which goes so far beyond our human comprehension that we NOT even capable of understanding it he pitied us.

He knew we just did not get it, we just did not understand his plan and as the sin from the garden held hostage us all, Jesus came to this earth, in the most humble  way.

The virgin mother , the star and the shepherds and the host of heaven proclaiming his magnificent majesty as the king came to save his people that the Father had given from before the foundations of this world.

And God loved and still LOVES us that much!

So yeah, The Cross is STILL foolishness to them that perish, but it will STILL save them from perishing.

The Word is STILL life to those who hear it.

The Seed  IS still to be sown into hearts and lives that will one day gladly cultivate it.

He came, He lived as the perfect sinless Son of God and he dies as the spotless Lamb and one day He will return and He will reign for ever and ever as Sovereign King ETERNAL!

So “be” that little church, “be” that beacon a person who has been fighting battles that are all uphill as the troubles of this world so desperately needs to see

As you hold out that word of life, think about the awesomeness of this:

Psalm 89:9,10: “ALL the nations whom thou hast made SHALL come and worship before thee, O Lord; and glorify thy name. For thou art great, and doest wondrous things; thou art God alone.”

That word is already settled in heaven, just hold it forth and share it and wait patiently because it just a moment of time and in that twinkling of an eye that word shall come to pass, that is our hope and our comfort, it will ALWAYS come to pass!

Have a blessed week! Thanks for reading! Love & Peace till next time! Sister Nina

Φλογιζω/ NBJ 2019/ Rev. Nina Brown Johnson

I love this song

 

 

“Iron Mask”

“O Zion, that bringest good tidings, get the up into the high mountain; O Jerusalem, that bringest good tidings, lift up thy voice with strength; lift it up, be not afraid: say unto the cities of Judah, Behold, your God!

Behold the Lord God will come with strong hand (strength), and his arm shall rule for  him: behold his reward is with him, and his work (wage) before him.

He shall feed his flock like a shepherd: he shall gather the lambs with his arm, and carry them in his bosom, and shall gently lead  those that are with young.” Isaiah 40:9-11

I love Dumas, I love the Musketeers, I love the sword fights , I love the Chivalry, justice, honor, and especially mercy in mercy out policies that were a must for his heroes and use them a lot in my writing.

But my all time favorite is “The Man in the Iron Mask”, and the intrigue behind the actual person behind that legend. But my thought with it comes from a line from the movie version, my total favorite version of the movie is the one from the seventies starring Richard Chamberlain, I was ten and thought he was the most handsome man on earth, whom I was totally going to marry one day when I grew up 🙂

But anyway in the newer version after the foiled coup the good guy is captured again and as he makes his pleas to his sadistic psychotic brother to just kill him instead of putting him back in that mask and to which his evil twin rants and screams with no mercy.

And as strange a comparison that this may be it just reminds me of how the enemy and even ourselves can try to put us back into the iron mask that that God has delivered us from.

The mask that we either were fitted when we were bound by the shackles of that are sometimes just part of being born into this world, just as Jesus always taught us, and this world is full of evil and only through accepting his salvation , and his peace, can we allow his grace to guide our lives and above resting in the assurance that through him we can overcome and live for him so that we will with  him.

The mask that we sometimes find ourselves in when we are faced with difficulties so far beyond our control and pain that we just can’t deal with so we try our best to hide the hurt, the grief and function through life, at work at home or sometimes even at church. When we try our best to smile and “go on” when secretly inside, behind that mask we really just want to lay down and cry.

But God and life has a way of bringing us out of that because we tend to see “hiding” our emotions, “working past the pain” somehow as “protecting” ourselves, our hearts, when it truth it is the opposite of that, it is not about being “courageous” it is actually about fear and not so much as being brave but rather our human fear of being broken.

Jesus specializes in broken, in fact we have to be broken, broken from our thinking and our false sense of self reliance so that we can accept him and him he desires for us, which is to live a life authored and finished by him.

Trusting him in everything and trusting him in our pain and trials and being who he has created us to be and that can require moments and times of revealing our vulnerabilities to others around us and most of us are not ever entirely comfortable with that. And that uncomfortableness leads to fear and fear makes us want to hide.

2nd Timothy 1:7,8: “For God hath not given us the spirit of fear; but of power, and of love, and of a sound mind. Be thou not ashamed of the testimony of our Lord, nor of me, his prisoner; but be thou partaker of the afflictions of the Gospel with me according to the power of God.”

God gave us liberty through his salvation, because as Jesus told us, “Ye shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free.”

And that truth is knowing in his word and knowing in him that this world and the suffering, pain, and sorrows is just a little while as Paul had described a “thorn in his flesh”, that the messenger of Satan had come to buffet (beat) him, as Paul went on to explain what translates to this, if he never went through troubles or faced difficulties or things he could not handle he would have became cold and exalted, and he would have never been effective as a representative of Christ.

 But because Paul did not hid from us (his future readers) or from those around him, his troubles and his pain, and most of all his vulnerabilities, he effectively allowed the power of God to manifest in his life and that power to effect others.

I want to remind us all again with 2 Corinthians 12:8-10: “For this thing I besought (PLEADED with) the Lord thrice (on three separate occasions) that it might depart form me.

And he said unto me, My grace is sufficient for thee: for my strength (power) is made perfect in weakness. 

Most gladly therefore will glory in my infirmities (weaknesses) that the power of Christ may rest upon me.

Therefore I take pleasure in infirmities, in reproaches, in necessities, in persecutions, in distress for Christ’s sake: for When I am weak, then I am strong.” 

Of course was by no means saying he loved trouble or going through all the turmoil that he did, but he is saying, to us, that by embracing the things he had no control over and seeing them in a different light and doing as we were commanded and “counting it all joy” that he discovered the true meaning of Christ with him and he and all around him saw the evidence of God’s power on his life.

And he wrote these words, and Jesus had him record these words to give hope and encouragement to those of the time, those who came before us and us now.

When God stripped away the “mask” of Saul, as Saul persecuted Christians and sought to destroy the church through violence, hatred, and self righteous, he became Paul and the power of God gave him the ability to show the vulnerability of his true face, the man God had created him to be and God removing that hard, unyielding, “iron” covering  allowed him to effectively minister to others through the revealing of his own struggles.

This was the “pleasure” he took in that, he knew God would prove strong and he knew that this would encourage others to embrace who they were and embrace the Gospel for the truth that it is.

Jesus brought us out of darkness into his glorious light so that we could be light and once that light has broken those “iron masks” that use we hid behind, we must be very careful to not allow the devil, the world, and most of all, our own flesh to cover us again with that unyielding iron.

Embrace who you are, embrace all the struggles of life that have made you who you are, don’t ever feel like you have to be “strong” and don’t ever let anyone make you feel “weak” for being vulnerable, because we you are at your breaking point or if you have already broke that it when you are shielded, covered, and surrounded by the absolute glory and absolute power of the only, living, Holy God and this is why scripture refers to God making our face to shine, in doing so you will shine his light to others giving them hope and courage to embrace the freedom to take off their own masks.

John 8:36: “IF the Son therefore shall make you free, ye shall be free indeed.” And your freedom will inspire others.

2 Corinthians 3:17: “Now the Lord is  that Spirit: and where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is liberty.

But we all, with open face (uncovered, bare face) beholding as in a glass (as looking in a mirror) the glory of the Lord, are changed (being transformed) into the same image from glory to glory, even, as by the Spirit of the Lord.”

You can see from these verses that God is telling us that as we are saved we are changed through his Spirit giving us freedom as we are being processed, changed, through the process of life, and all the difficulties that come with that are actually being used for our good to transforms us as God desires. 

We have to consciously remember his word and  keep that word on our mind and apply that word to our hearts, for example when Jesus said that He would never forsake us, that means  he will never forsake us.

When the Bible promises that no weapon formed against will prosper, that means that no scheme or plot has power to destroy you, it may feel like you are going to be, but you will not be, because God sees  with the eyes of eternity. And we must apply his promises to our lives every single day.

If we fail to do that, we can easily get off course and forget what we once knew.

We go to James 1:23-25: “For if any be a hearer of the word, and not a doer, he is like unto a man beholding his natural face in a glass (looking in a mirror).

For he beholdeth himself and goeth his way, and straightway forgetteth what manner of man he was (glances in the mirror, leaves and forgets what kind of man he even is).

But whoso looketh into the perfect law of liberty (freedom), and continueth therein, he being not a forgetful hearer, but a doer of the work, this man is blessed in his deed.”

God gave us two views of  the same issue, we can look honestly or we can give it a quick glance  a note that we are after all, “just human” and go our way and completely forgetting who God called us to be and forgetting his promises and just give up and be quickly lead into the temptation of not particularly liking “what” we see staring back at us and putting ourselves back into a mask that God  had already removed. And that is not his desire or his purpose for any of us.

So today I want to encourage you to BE who God says you are. And LIVE how he told you to live, and this one is a hard one, when everyone around you is fitting in and hiding their faces behind the masks they feel comfortable in, let Jesus shine through you and let the pain, the scars, be visible because someone else NEEDS to see them.

Let them see his gentleness lead you in his paths!

Rev. Nina Brown Johnson  2019 / Φλογιζω NBJ 2019

If you have never heard this please do, I believe it will bless you, probably make you cry but those tears are precious to God!

 

 

 

 

“Gazingstock”

1 CORINTHIANS 4:9-13: “For I think that God hath set forth (displayed) us the apostles last, as it were appointed to death; for we are made a spectacle unto the world, and to the angels, and to men. We are fools for Christ’s sake ( the world opinion) but ye are wise in Christ; we ARE weak, but ye are strong; ye are honourable, but we ARE despised.

Even unto the present hour we both hunger, and thirst, and are naked (poorly clothed), and ARE buffeted (beaten) and have no certain dwelling place; and labour, working with our own hands: BEING reviled, we bless; BEING persecuted, we suffer (endure) it. BEING defamed (slandered) we entreat (encourage): we ARE made the filth of this world, and ARE the offscouring of all things unto this day. ”

We often think of the Apostles as almost super human, almost as if, had they needed to, they could have run through stone buildings.

We are half right, considering that they, with the exception of Paul hung out with Jesus and SAW Him ascend into heaven and combined they were FREED by angels, SAW demons cast out and SAW the dead resurrected back to life.

BUT the super part belonged to the LORD the other is just human!
As we read the verse above, nothing about that sounds glamorous, or remotely desirable as a life style and these are the things we often forget.

I truly believe that this is what causes so many “new” Christians to slip and some seasoned ones to misplace their robes and end up wearing a coat made of jade 

For the most part it is preventable.

Once we accept Christ, and especially if we have been given the gift of the Holy Ghost, we have that wonderful newness.

Everything IS brand new, WE ARE New but then life, emotions, and the enemy come and often no one has ever told the “new” person that what they are going through is NORMAL for the course and no one helps them through that maze and they end up lost in it and give up even trying to find their way home.

The second group comes into play, as often having a fight with hell all the way to the altar and sometimes passed the altar and into the water because they have a call on their life.

And once they do make it “in” that fight only intensifies and I really, really wish I could give a “one word will make it all go away” answer right here.

BUT it does not exist.
Once this particular spiritual warfare has been engaged, it can not be disengaged because:
#1. The calling of God on lives is determined before birth and “they do not expire until we do.”
#2. Giving up is not an option, you will lose your salvation, and everything you have ALREADY fought through will have been for nothing.
#3. Outside of the will of God and without His protection, satan will chew you up and spit you out.
#4 Your fall will affect every single person you love and all those whom you were to minister to.
#5 THE most important reason is that JESUS died for you and saved you and He will NEVER let you be tested beyond what you can handle and a servant can not be above His Master, to reign with Christ we must suffer with Christ.
“Think It not strange…” sometimes battles are so fierce and dark that you can not even see daylight but you must remember you war against principalities and powers of the air.

I don’t know how I would have ever made it had God not blessed me with the people he did in my life and ministers that would share their own personal battle stories and some so hard to fathom, that my problems would pale in comparison.

Without the knowledge that these things happened to people whom I knew were Godly and doing their best in their walk, I could have never kept my head above water, I held onto every single word and would remember their stories and how they got through it and that they were still standing and that I serve the same God.

HEBREWS 10:32,33: “But call to remembrance the former days, in which after ye were illuminated (enlightened), ye ENDURED a GREAT FIGHT OF AFFLICTIONS (struggle with sufferings); partly, (in part) whilst ye were made a GAZINGSTOCK (SPECTACLE) BOTH BY REPROACHES AND AFFLICTIONS (tribulations) and partly (in part) whilst YE BECAME COMPANIONS OF THEM THAT WERE SO USED (treated).

What can we say there?

The days after your salvation, such a GREAT FIGHT with sufferings and troubles. You were as one that the world would look at and stare upon, as one in medieval stocks for the entire village to mock and ridicule.
Reproaches of those who laugh at your salvation and the enemy who questions “Where is your God now?”

But it is due in part so that YOU CAN become who you are to become in Christ.

1 PETER 1;4-8,10: “Whereby are given unto us exceeding GREAT and PRECIOUS promises: that by these ye might be partakers of the divine nature, having escaped the corruption that is in the world through lust.

And beside (along with) this, giving ALL DILIGENCE, ADD to your faith virtue, and to virtue knowledge: AND to knowledge temperance ( self-control); AND to temperance patience; AND to patience godliness; AND to godliness brotherly kindness; AND to brotherly kindness CHARITY ( love).
FOR if these thing be in you (are yours) and abound, they make you that YE SHALL NEITHER BE BARREN NOR UNFRUITFUL IN THE KNOWLEDGE OF OUR LORD JESUS CHRIST. Wherefore the rather brethren, GIVE DILIGENCE TO MAKE YOUR CALLING AND ELECTION SURE: FOR IF YOU DO THESE THINGS YE SHALL NEVER FAIL.”

So you have heard it from Paul and you have heard it from Peter, now they are some pretty reliable sources!!!

All these things WILL work to your good and all these things WILL produce every quality needed to be productive in the Kingdom of God.
If you are “new” please stay close and active in a good Bible believing church, read along with them, find ministers that you enjoy hearing and enjoy the word, don’t pressure yourself or let anyone else pressure you, the only opinion of you that should matter is God’s and He is awesome and will teach you all things.

Find a good prayer partner that you can trust, that can pray with you when life comes at you or temptation comes calling and if you fall of the boat, repent and get back on the boat!

And keep trying, IT WILL GET BETTER and IT WILL GET EASIER.
If you are in group two, seek the old paths and surround yourself with prayer warriors and try to spend time with older ones who have been there and done that and they WILL encourage you and give you godly advice that is imperative to stay on track in your calling.

And the best news is this, once you successfully war against an attack of the enemy, he will no more use that same weapon, because it is no longer effective.

Once you make it through a tough battle you will soon find that the battle made you stronger and you will be able to stand against attacks that would have put you out earlier in your ministry.

You will also be better at seeing attacks coming and be prepared more easily, not to say there will never be blind sides, but when it is said and done, you will be glad you stayed the course, because medals are not just given, they must be won.
Φλογιζω NB/2016

! Original post 02/2016.  Still battling blue screen, Please check out this blast from posts past!🐦

 

 

 

 

“CAVES” Part 2 “Cavin’ with Dave”

“He that is our God IS the God of salvation; and unto God the Lord belong the issues (escapes) from death.” Psalm68:20

As the Lord asked Elijah what he was doing, and Elijah answered, the Lord called him out of the cave, where He then showed a magnificent display of His power, I believe to try to snap Elijah out of it with the remembrance of WHO was truly on his side. He spoke to Elijah in a quite soft voice asking him again (1 Kings 19:13) ” What are you doing here?” Elijah again word for word gave him his reason and it is so clear the main reason he became discouraged was the solitude. He became so distraught and discouraged that he could no longer see the majesty, the power that would slay his enemy.

He KNEW  it he just lost his ability to continue the fight. You will notice with these passages that God asked TWICE and after that he gave Elijah instruction for turning over his assignment to Elisha. God will not override our wills, it was not his idea for Elijah’s work to come to this end and He showed extreme mercy in how He dealt with him.

This can be proven through the account of Jonah, who just bucked on God and decided he just was not doing what God had commanded him to do and after he found himself in the belly of as he put it “hell”. He found it to be in his best interest to do as he had been asked and even by the end of the book he was still all mad at God and I have never found anything else on what finally became of him.

So you can see there was a complete difference in what was going on in these guys by the difference of how God dealt with them.  As we all know Elijah did not die, he was taken and in my personal opinion, just a little rest, a little reprieve until time to come back to this earth as one of the two witnesses described in Revelation. His work has not been completed. It does prove mercy toward our messed up worn out human minds and half broken spirits. and that we can make OWN ON DECISION to “die” in the cave.

David also did some caving, like Elijah he felt mortal fear. the very real threat of King Saul trying to kill him. Whereas I think Elijah just didn’t want to deal with Jezebel, I think he was tired of fighting the whole bunch. {Complete unrelated side note here, I do love what Jesus said about Jezebel in the book of Revelation, He refers to her as “That woman, Jezebel” and notes that He gave even her a chance to repent, she just evidently did not accept it. Worth thinking about when the devil tries to tell people that they have been too “bad” to be saved.}

Back to David, here he is, he has already BEEN anointed to be King over Israel but as it looks now, if he dares show his face, he will never be King because Saul is very intent on “making a memory outta him.”  Now the funny thing about caves is that sometimes what your hiding from can end up in that cave with you!

 1 Samuel24:3 : ” And he (King Saul) came to the sheepcotes by the way, where was a CAVE; and Saul went in to cover his feet ( attend his needs): and DAVID AND HIS MEN REMAINED IN THE SIDES OF THE CAVE.” Now David’s men were ecstatic and told him this was a divine appointment to take out his enemy but David saw it an a chance to sow some mercy and trust the Lord and would not kill Saul. Instead he cut off a piece of his clothing to prove to Saul just how close he had been and that if he wished him harm he could have nailed him right there. But even in doing that he felt guilty, because vengeance IS God’s and sometimes that is hard for us to remember but David passed this one.

  Now, how he got through his cave experience, he REMEMBERED what God tried to make Elijah see and he thought upon these things and this was his daily bread. This is some of what he actually wrote while in the cave.

Psalm 57: 1-3  “BE MERCIFUL UNTO ME, O GOD, BE MERCIFUL UNTO ME:  for MY SOUL TRUSTETH IN THEE:  yea, IN THE SHADOW OF THY WINGS WILL I MAKE MY REFUGE, UNTIL these calamities be overpast (passed by). I WILL cry unto God most high: unto God that performeth all things for me. HE SHALL SEND FROM HEAVEN, AND SAVE ME FROM THE REPROACH OF HIM THAT WOULD SWALLOW ME UP. SELAH. GOD SHALL SEND FORTH HIS MERCY AND TRUTH.” 

His strongest assets were that he KNEW the power of prayer and praise. Even though we view him as someone who was so close to God (and he was) who could kill lions and bears (and he did) and someone who could hit a giant head on and take that head, someone who walked in the anointing and presence of God, but still he was exactly what we are, HUMAN and he also became afraid, troubled, and discouraged but here is his cry, let it be ours:

Psalm 55:1-8: “Give ear to my prayer, O God, and hide not thyself from my supplication. attend unto me, and hear me: I mourn (wander) in my complaint, and make a noise; BECAUSE of the VOICE OF MY ENEMY, BECAUSE of THE OPPRESSION OF THE WICKED: for thy cast iniquity upon me, and in wrath they hate me. MY HEART IS SORE PAINED WITHIN ME: AND THE TERRORS OF DEATH ARE FALLEN UPON ME, FEARFULNESS AND TREMBLING ARE COME UPON ME, AND HORROR HATH OVERWHELMED ME. And I said, oh that I had wings like a dove! for then would I FLY AWAY AND BE AT REST. LO, THEN WOULD I WANDER FAR OFF, AND REMAIN IN THE WILDERNESS. SELAH. I WOULD HASTEN (SPEED UP) MY ESCAPE FROM THE WINDY STORM AND THE TEMPEST.”

Yeah, KING DAVID, the mighty warrior to end all warriors, who throne IS established FOREVER, whose words written in his place of anguish still shine as a mighty light THOUSANDS of years later.

He was scared, he was tired, and he very much wanted to run away to escape all these things and NEVER return again. Sometimes so do we. Next time we will listen closely and try to hear the words of the KING OF KINGS as HIS voice resonates into our own caves, as He calls us out, our souls feeding on the bread of life, His word and His promises. 

Φλογίζω NBJ 2016

Original post date: 01/16/2016 *Revisited 06/27/2019*

 

CRAWLING OUT OF THE CAVE #1

“But he answered and said, It is written MAN SHALL NOT LIVE BY BREAD ALONE BUT BY EVERY WORD THAT PROCEEDETH OUT OF THE MOUTH OF GOD.” Matthew 4:4

Not only as Christians but just as humans we go through many seasons in life and all these seasonal changes can often leave us  disillusioned, drained, despondent and the most dreaded and deadly of the “D” words, discouraged. It rains on the just and the unjust and that is THE “go to” scripture for all who are weary and when winds blow and the devil wants to convince us that if we were right we wouldn’t be going through this.

But again we all know that he IS the liar of all liars and everyone born upon this earth will suffer heartache whether they choose to follow Jesus or not. As a watchman who no longer has a tower and now sits perched upon a precariously wobbly wall only hoping that the shouts reach the ears of those for which they are intended, I can more than ever relate to all of the above. 

January 2015 my Dad was hospitalized and it really did not look like he was going to make it, before going to visit him one morning I got prayer and I had never before nor have I since received a word at that particular church. Of course my nerves were a whole new level of shot and after the service a man came back and told me that when they had been praying he had received a word for me, and it was that 2015 WOULD BE a good year for me, I knew by the delivery of the message and the eyes of the messenger, that it translated to this, there would be NO time during the coming year that it would FEEL good and that NO MATTER what IT looked like or how trying it became that somehow in the spiritual realm it would be working for a greater purpose and all in all in the book that God keeps of all our lives that it would be recorded as a positive.

I think we tend to look at prophecy sometimes as we wish to see it and not so much as what GOD IS TRYING TO TELL US!

It is often something we may not want to hear but had we not known it we have lost hope and the dreaded “D” word would lead us straight back out into the world under bondage to the other “D” word.

I thank God for the word he sent me, it kept my eyes focused through an extremely painful year. My Dad had also received a word at the worst of his illness that his work was not quite finished and had he not received that, he may have not had the will to go on.

But still sometimes enough wind, enough rain, and just enough cold from feelings of disconnection can turn us to cave dwellers. We like to believe it is a place of shelter, a place of rest, and most of all a surrounding to block out all those nasty attacks and the only way they can get us is head on and we will be able to see that coming.

Right? Well, no, Not quite, caves are very dark, isolated, and filled with bones of whatever had made it a prior shelter and never made it back out, and your not going to get much rest if you have to always keep watch for fear of what is going to come through that “door”.

Elijah tried it, 1st Kings 19, God had already done mighty, mighty works through Elijah, really think about seeing this with your own eyes, FIRE FALLING FROM HEAVEN, PROVISIONS THAT WOULD NOT FAIL, A HUMAN FED BY  RAVENS,THE DEAD RAISED TO LIFE. And yet even he, who had absolutely NO DOUBT anywhere in him concerning the power of God. He ran for his life, he had became so weary that he just wanted it all over and just wanted to go home.

God always patient and merciful sent an angel to feed him and strengthen him, showing us as always God knows right where we are, even when he did not send us in that direction and even though he continued on his emotionally self propelled journey God provided for him. Once he made it through the forty day journey and found the refuge of his cave the Lord asked very point blank “WHAT DOEST THOU HERE ELIJAH?”  After Elijah gave his reasoning to the Lord GOD CALLED HIM OUT OF THE CAVE.

Now God gave a rather majestic display of His power and might over all the universe, and sometimes we also could use a refresher course.   ALL POWER IN HEAVEN AND EARTH.

Psalm 97:1-6 “The Lord reigneth; let the earth rejoice; let the multitude of the isles be glad thereof. Clouds and darkness are round about him: righteousness and judgment are the habitation (FOUNDATION) of his throne. A fire goeth before him, and burneth up his enemies round about. HIS lightnings enlightened the world: THE EARTH SAW, AND TREMBLED. THE HILLS MELTED LIKE WAX AT THE PRESENCE OF THE LORD, AT THE PRESENCE OF THE LORD OF THE WHOLE EARTH. THE HEAVENS DECLARE HIS RIGHTEOUSNESS, AND ALL THE PEOPLE SEE HIS GLORY.”

 

ISAIAH 45-5-7 “ I am the Lord, and there is none else, there is no God beside me: I girded thee, though thou hast not known me: THAT THEY MAY KNOW FROM THE RISING OF THE SUN, AND FROM THE WEST, THAT THERE IS NONE BESIDE ME. I AM THE LORD, AND THERE IS NONE ELSE. I FORM THE LIGHT, AND CREATE DARKNESS: I MAKE PEACE, AND CREATE EVIL (CALAMITY): I THE LORD DO THESE THINGS.” 

ISAIAH 54:16  “Behold, I have created the smith that bloweth the coals in the fire, and that bringeth forth an instrument (weapon) for his work; and I have created the waster to destroy.” 

This is the power that created the universe. The voice that spoke everything into existence. The one who named the stars and flung the into existence. The sun and moon will cower in His presence and the very mountains will flee from before Him. Heaven is His throne and earth is but His footstool.

And all nations and people will bow before Him and the same small voice who spoke to Elijah is still that same voice that speaks to us today. He is calling us out of the caves and His word is the way.

Please join me next time, Lord’s will, and we’ll look at David’s caving and follow up with that voice and the word of his promises that will help us see a brighter day OUTSIDE of the cave.

Φλογιζω/ NBJ 2016

Original post date: 01/14/2016 to read the remainder of this series, please check out: “CAVES” Part 2 “Cavin’ with Dave”

“RESONATE”Crawling out of the cave #3

“It’s gonna have to be stirred, but who’s got the stick?”

Neglect not THE gift that IS in thee, which was given thee by prophecy.with the laying on the hands of the presbytery (elders). 

MEDITATE upon these things; GIVE THYSELF wholly (ENTIRELY) to them; that thy profiting may appear (be evident) to all.

TAKE HEED unto thyself, and unto the doctrine; CONTINUE in them; for in doing THIS thou shalt both save thyself, and them that hear thee. ” 1 Timothy 4:14-16

I hope that the bold and underline type really hits what I want to get at with this, it is hard to preach without a “voice” but thankfully bold type can be quite loud.

I am first and foremost a “messenger” and this particular message is that most ignored message anyone can ever give and I know that, because once I delivered it live, went home and another person told me about the message at the church they had attended that  same night, it was essentially the same message, different delivery person and you know we should be paying attention to other churches and other ministries also because I do believe that it is seven times Jesus tells us in the Book of Revelation,“He that hath an ear, LET HIM HEAR WHAT THE SPIRIT SAITH UNTO THE CHURCHES…” 

That has been a very long time and despite all the messengers God sends, those gifts, NOT to mention the CALLINGS are still being neglected and if you doubt that look at this world.

Where are the miracles? Miracles, mention of which we need to be reminded of the fact that miracles are NOT for believers , but are for those who DO NOT believe, to prove the existence of God. Miracles are not for our benefit but to bring those who do not believe to Christ Where is the healing? Healing, the gift that is given from God along with the working of miracles. These two gifts are actually one and are given together, so where are they?

Where is the deliverance? Where are those who are supposed to make up that hedge between the world and those who have not yet surrendered to God? Where are  words of wisdom and the prophecies to help believers stand in times of trouble? 

Where is the gift of faith? Not the measure of faith given to all believers, but the gift of faith, that pulls down strong holds, released chains and does battle against the absolute forces of hell through the POWER of the Holy Ghost and there it is, we can do nothing, and no matter how much we speak, think, or hope without the power of God and the effectual working of those gifts in our actual callings, nothing in this world is going to change, if the “church” as a whole doesn’t wake up soon and put God and his work before their personal work, personal lives and comfort, thoughts and opinions it is only going to get worse.

God has bestowed these gifts on individuals for the work of the kingdom, so where are they?

Are they held captive inside an unwilling vessel?

Are they tucked away inside someone who sits at home inside of attending church because they have been hurt and offended that no one has tried to reach out to?

Are they wasting away inside of a believer sitting on a church pew that has no idea what is even inside of them, much less how to nurture and use that gift.

And again this is not even getting into all of it or the callings that are not being fulfilled.

Why? Because the neglect is not always intentional, sometimes it comes from the lack of being stirred and to nothing can stir itself, I do realize we can encourage ourselves in the Lord, through His word and that we are to “stir up” our faith, but this kind of stirring requires a “stick” and we can’t stir this in ourselves, we can help feed it, help nurture it, but you can read from these scriptures that it requires an elder, a prophet, or some other trusted individual of God to do the “stirring”.

2 Timothy 1:6: “” Wherefore I put thee in remembrance (want to remind you) that thou stir up the gift, which is in thee by the putting (laying) on of my hands.”

Paul had the “stick” he prayed for counted people, God granted him miracles and marvelous displays of the power of God, which through many, many were saved.

He wrote most of the New Testament and he wrote these things to Timothy to “stir” him because was his spiritual son, and we are all siblings in the Lord and should want to see those callings fulfilled on other’s lives and we all need those gifts working.

So we know that God has those who do have “sticks” and it is part of their job to STIR OTHERS.

Teaching is also a calling, we don’t just wake up one morning knowing all these things and when we come into Christ we have to learn, and to learn we need teachers.

I have always felt that why so many “go back out” they are treated like they should already know these things when truly how on earth could they?

They get discouraged and think that there is something just wrong with them and end up back out.

Of course the Bible tells us that we have no need that a man teach us, because God teaches us, but I don’t think He means every little thing, I think He is referring to the more personal things and “one on one” situations.

Lord’s will, there will be several more posts dealing in more detail about the gifts and callings, but for now let’s REALLY think about “stirring”.

Many definitions of “stir”: To affect strongly, to excite, to BECOME active, to rouse from INDIFFERENCE, to provoke deliberately, to MOVE, especially RISING FROM SLEEP, to move AWAY from USUAL POSITION. To HAPPEN, To BEGIN.

Stirring stick: Is used to mix ingredients and if you think in terms of God living in us and as scripture says “to make in himself of twain (two) one new man” and that hearing the Word of God must be mixed  with faith, as we are told of those that we NOT profited because the word was NOT mixed with that faith. Just as we are saved by faith through grace, there are combinations and those combinations must be right. Which brings us to “stirring rod” which is used to mix gently and slowly and carefully as to not cause adverse reactions when dealing with dangerous chemicals. 

Think of this in terms of a cake that is half-baked, not that cake has anything to do with danger, but a calling that is not fulfilled or a person burned out or certain callings that left in the “natural” will actually destroy the vessel.

I’ll give this, if a person had a calling that dealt in certain realms of the supernatural and the battle against that calling came full force and made them a feel like a Gazingstock  or if they had felt that they had been running an impossible gauntlet it would be very easy for them to just give up if no one ever told them that this is just part of the deal.

With billions addicted to drugs, people committing suicide every single day, people hurt, lonely, and feeling that they have nowhere to turn and turning to all the wrong things. The church growing smaller rather than earth yielding her promised increase, wickedness running amok rather than that promised righteousness spring forth.

And every single second counting more precious for the eleventh hour watchmen knowing that God left us to do this work and we will be held accountable for all we do and yet all we fail to do, shouldn’t we finally figure out who has that stick and who supposed to be doing the stirring?

Φλογιζω NBJ 2019

 

 

 

 

 

“Kidron calling”

“And when Jesus had spoken these words, he went forth with his disciples over the brook Cedron (Kidron) where there was a garden, into which he entered, he and his disciples. And Judas also, which betrayed him, knew the place: for Jesus ofttimes resorted thither (met there) with his disciples.” John 18:1,2 

Picking this to tie in with my last post. this scripture took place at the time of the arrest of Jesus, after he had given the disciples warning that they should watch and pray that they would not enter into temptation.

Now is a good time to point out that as Jesus went forth into this place, He was on His way to his arrest, torture, humiliation, and ultimate crucifixion.

ALL this laid just beyond the crossing over that brook BUT this was also the path of His divine purpose for coming to this earth, as He answered Pilate… To this end was I born, and for this cause I came into the world,  and the enemy, just like Judas in this passage, always knows where we go for comfort and just where to find us in a crisis, and that is when he hits us with all he has and it’s like that button, he knows how and exactly where to do the most damage.

But FIRST I really want to point out that Jesus is an exception to all the rules. He is God and when He came here in human form as a sacrifice for all of us, He did so completely sinless.

He NEVER committed sin or even thought a wrong thought, so it was NEVER a question of falling with Him, as it is for us. BUT as He also told us that The disciple is not above his master, nor the servant above his lord. and we are to follow His lead in how He handled every situation and circumstance in life and even in the face of death.

And there is so much for us to learn in crossing over our own brook “Kidron” and if we are called, we are going to have to cross that brook.

We can a learn that from David’s story 2 Samuel chapters fifteen and sixteen, to give the background on it, this WAS due to David falling into temptation, because of his affair with Bathsheba and the essential “hit” he put on his own solider Uriah in an attempt to cover his tracks, he had been told that the sword would NEVER leave his house, so even though he had repented and reconciled to God he was still under that judgment and this story took place as he was fleeing from his son who WAS one of the evils that would arise from his own house against him.

If possible please read these chapters to get the jest of this story because I am just using a few verses to get to this point, but it is a story I have used many times to make many different points and so much can be learned on some many level from David’s ordeal.

I am starting scripture coming into the part of the story when most had turned against David and it actually says that Absalom “stole the hearts of the men of Israel” and as he prepared to overtake his father’s throne, David and those whose were faithful to him were forced to flee and this is where decisions were being made.

2 Samuel 15: 21-23 : “And Ittai answered the king, and said, As the Lord liveth, and as my lord the king liveth, surely in what place my lord the king shall be, whether in death or life, even there shall thy servant be.

And David said to Ittai, Go and pass over. And Ittai the Gittite passed over, and all his men, and all the little ones that was with him.

And ALL the country wept with a loud voice,and all the people passed over,the king himself passed over the brook Kidron (CALLED),and all the people passed over, toward the way of the wilderness.”

What really jumps out at me is the similarity between Ittai’s pledge of allegiance to David and Peter’s words to Jesus and one of the literal meanings given for Kidron is “CALLED” and as you go on with that story, David was hit so hard just in these few chapters, this ONE instance of a PERIOD in his life, he was chased, cursed, hated but he was learning something, and you got to remember WHO David was and what he had ALREADY learned from the Lord.

By this point in his life, he had been in battle after battle, fought Goliath, survived Saul’s hatred and had been anointed three times to be king and David knew what is was to be afraid and he knew what it was to desperately seek God, he knew what is was to  trust and he knew what is was to encourage himself when he felt a million miles away. But by the point this all came into play against him he had gotten a little out of practice keeping those things he had learned fresh in his mind and most importantly fresh in his heart.

As he and all his people passed over the brook and they all went toward the WAY of the wilderness, his flesh began to die, when he just accepted the things being thrown at him without cursing back or flying into a rage and wanting to retaliate, when he just kept on crossing the brook of the called his enemies were defeated and his throne rightfully restored.

Not to say that there wasn’t PAIN, serious, serious pain, as all these crossings were made with tears and sorrow.

Over the past few weeks I have thought so much about what Jesus told Peter, when He said The Spirit truly is ready but the flesh is weak  and I have come to believe of the many lessons we learn from that scripture that the biggest, hardest lesson to grasp is this, that our spirit, the part of us that loves God, longs for His presence and wants nothing more than to please Him and be in His will can BE completely given over to Him but our human side can still have a lot of catching up to do, it can be very weak and must be strengthened BEFORE we can enter into those places that He wants us to travel.

And when you think of it, imagine Peter and ALL the disciples, hanging out with Jesus day and night, being in the midst of Him and the miracles and Him giving them that authority over demons and diseases BUT He was right there with them or at least they knew He was close by and would come to the rescue just like He did when He rebuked their lack of faith and taught them the need for fasting and prayer when they could not cast the demon out of the young boy and the father had to bring him to Jesus Himself. (Matthew 17:14-21)

So how much harder would it be for them when they had to have the faith to believe for these and greater works in His name and believe for that power to come when they asked in His name when He would no longer be by their side on this earth?

He was not only their teacher, He was also their best friend and even though they knew who He was and is, and they saw with their own eyes miracles and resurrections of the dead, nothing could ever have prepared them for the transitions between heaven and earth that would take place.

Their spirits were ready, that is why He gave them the extra comfort of adding TRULY when He told them but the “flesh” part, the human side had to be strengthened or otherwise their minds could have never withstood the transition that they also would have to make on that journey with Him.

Think about that… ALL of this was new, it was new to EVERYONE and if you put yourself in their shoes at the time and ask how would they react when they would no longer see Him or touch Him in the physical realm but be aware of His invisible presence and would actually feel Him in their souls.

NOTHING could have ever prepared them for that, it is not a shock that they stood “gazing up” when He went back to heaven, they were trying to reason it all in their heads when it cannot be reasoned and they would have to learn how to navigate their lives and fulfilling His call on their lives in a way they could have never possibly imagined.

And when the pain, the sorrow and the persecution would come that flesh would have to be under submission to the spirit or else that flesh would cost callings and how that submission comes is in one word…acceptance… and I’ll leave that right there for now.

Thank you for reading and thanks for all your prayers!

God Bless you with a wonderful week!

Φλογιζω Σαλπιζω NBJ2018 /  Repost 11/16/2019

 

BEFORE

“Yea, BEFORE the day was I AM HE ; and there is none that can deliver out of my hand: I will work and who shall let (reverse) it?”  Isaiah 43:13

One of my favorite statement by the Lord. 

This is one of those double-edged sword statements because to be on the wrong side of that statement is a horrible fearful fate… but ahh, we are not talking about that in this post.

We are talking about how beautiful and truly overwhelming it truly is when we think about being on the right side of that statement.

BEFORE

BEFORE everything.

BEFORE anything.

BEFORE all that was created.

BEFORE the angels, the demons, or any other beings.

BEFORE the great void of darkness and the waters of earth were divided.

BEFORE day and night were called forth.

BEFORE the heavens were divided from the earth.

BEFORE the grass, trees, and every known and unknown vegetation this day. BEFORE the birds, animals, fish and man.

BEFORE it all the God of creation forever stands.

BEFORE the very creation of DAY, in HIS OWN WORDS, WAS I AM HE. 

And there is no power in heaven, in earth, under earth, no invention man kind can fathom or enough forces of hell that can stop, prevent, or deliver out of his hand.

And as he also said, he will do as he wishes and WHO could ever stop him or reverse, change, or destroy ANY work he has ordained or brought forth?!!!

INCLUDING his work of creating US! Completely, intentionally, ON PURPOSE with rhyme and reason, creating each one of us simply because he IS God and he WANTED us to exist! 

Complete with our Spirit, soul, heart, mind, and personality and all the unique traits that make us truly one of a kind!

Even when we are a little quirky, different, or such as myself, kinda flaky 🙂 no one will ever understand us like God, we have that uniqueness because our Father wanted us to be unique. 

God IS the master Creator… actually having created creation… ponder that…he created the very conception and act of creation itself, which is why all of us have a talent or special God-given skill, being created in HIS image, we also have that NEED to be creative.

Think about it the next time that you are in your “zone, whether it is art, music, wood-working, beauty, cooking, the activity that brings you immense joy in expressing your creativity, REMEMBER that the joy and satisfaction that you feel during that “labor of love” can not even be compared to the joy and love the absolute Creator of the universe took in creating YOU!

Revelation 4:11 b: “…for thou hast created all things, and for thy pleasure they are and were created.” 

Am I the only person that finds that terribly exciting? 

Well, if you are not excited, I hope that by the end of this post you will be!

If everyone person on this earth could get past the lies of this world, the ridiculous demands of society that command us to be cookie cutter cutouts of the latest fashion trend or the brain washed servants to sin that think and say exactly as those who pervert the truth of creation and the Gospel so wish us to.

Oh what a refreshment that would be!

You know we can not control what others think of us or say about us, but when we fail to accept how and why we are created just as we are actually INSULTING God!

Now, I think people really need to be careful with the Bible and  be certain they read before and after scriptures and study the ENTIRE teaching because failure to do so often leads to teachings that are completely out of context, SO bearing that, the scriptures are pertaining to repentance and restoration, but the verses I want to highlight is the danger  of “questioning” that we as humans often do, when we “question” our this, that, or the other thing we do not like about ourselves when held to the current “standard” and we can understand through these verses his ABSOLUTE power, authority, and love for us, IF we accept that and submit into his will, forgetting our own.

Isaiah 45:1-18: “Thus saith the Lord to his anointed, to Cyrus, whose right hand I have holden (held), to subdue nation before him; and I will loose the loins (armour) of kings, to open before him the two leaved gates (double doors); and the gates shall not be shut;

 I WILL GO BEFORE THEE, and make the crooked places straight : I will break into pieces the gates of brass, and cut in sunder (half) the bars of iron:

 And I will give thee the treasures of darkness, and hidden riches of secret places, that thou mayest know that I, THE LORD, WHICH CALLETH THEE BY THY NAME am God of Israel For Jacob my servant’s sake, and Israel mine elect (chosen). 

I have even called thee by name: I have surnamed thee, though  thou hast not known me.  I, am the Lord, and there is none else, there is  no god beside me: I girded (clothed and armoured), though thou hast not known me: 

That they may know from the rising of the sun, and from the west (till sunset), that there is none beside me. I am the Lord, and there is none else.

I form the light, and create darkness: I make peace, and create evil (calamity): I the lord do ALL these things. 

Drop down, (rain down) ye heavens, from above, and let the skies pour down righteousness: let the earth open , and let them bring forth salvation, and let righteousness spring up together; I THE LORD HAVE CREATED IT.

Woe unto him that striveth (argues) WITH his Maker!  Let the potsherd strive with the potsherds of the earth.

Shall the clay SAY to him that fashioned (molded) it, WHAT makes thou? or thy work, He hath no hands? for something you actually made to say to you that you no longer have any power over that creation)

Woe unto him that saith unto his father, WHAT begettest thou? or to the woman (mother) WHAT hast thou brought forth (given birth to)?

Thus saith the Lord, the Holy One of Israel, and his MAKER, Ask of me thing concerning my sons, and concerning the work of my hands command ye me.  

I have MADE the earth, and CREATED man upon it: I, even MY HANDS, have stretched out the heavens, and all their host have I commanded,  I have raised him up in righteousness, and I will direct all his ways: he shall build my city, and he shall let go my captives, not for price nor reward (not money nor gain), saith the Lord of hosts.

Thus saith the Lord, The labour of Egypt, and merchandise of Ethiopia and of the Sabeans, men of stature, shall come over unto thee, and they shall be thine: they shall come after thee; in chains they shall come over, and they shall fall down unto thee, they shall make supplication unto thee, saying, Surely God is in thee; and there is none else, there is no God (meaning no god OTHER than the ONE true God, Jehovah).

Verily thou art a God that hidest thyself, O God of Israel, the Saviour. They shall be ashamed, and also confounded (disgraced), all of them: they shall go to confusion together that are makers of idols. 

But Israel shall be saved in the Lord with an everlasting salvation: ye shall not be ashamed nor confounded world without end.

For thus saith the Lord that CREATED the heavens; God himself that FORMED the earth and MADE it; he hath established it, he hath CREATED it NOT IN VAIN, he formed it to be inhabited: I am the Lord; and there is none else.” 

I love that God is clearly pointing out the fact that even THOUGH they have not known him, he still very much knows them!

And isn’t that just like us sometimes, especially those who refuse to acknowledge God as they are in truth the work that declares the craftsman no longer has hands to alter the work he has created.

There is such beauty and such peace, and blessed assurance beyond human comprehension in the realization and acceptance of our place in his master plan. And that place is simply this, accepting ourselves as his creation, accepting his will, and resting in that he ALWAYS goes before because before “the day”, before the foundations of the earth were even created, THERE WAS AND THERE IS AND THERE WILL FOREVER BE, I AM.

Rest in this, have hope in this, know who you are in this:

Deuteronomy 31:8: ” Be strong and of a good courage, fear not, nor be afraid of them: for the Lord thy God, HE IT IS THAT DOTH GO WITH THEE; HE WILL NOT FAIL THEE, NOR FORSAKE THEE.” 

As the redeemed of the Lord, we sometimes need reminded of WHO goes BEFORE us every single day of our lives. 

Φλογίζω Σαλπίζω NB 2018

 

“Waning under the weight of waiting”

Now that title is quite a mouthful, try saying it fast three times, could be a pretty good tongue twister 🙂 but I am hoping it’ll make for a much better thought provoker!

Hebrews 12:1a: “Let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which doth so easily beset us…”

Used this scripture before, we all have I am sure, but for the moment I want to concentrate on what a weight waiting can be.

Ever think about it? When people or even our own selves come up with every known imaginable reason why we can not serve God or why we can’t accomplish his will or why we can’t live for him… just now, maybe in the future but now we can’t because we are waiting, waiting on some magical, mystical desire to take place or we are waiting on someone else to “come in” then we’ll “get right” with the Lord.

How could ANYTHING of this world be more important than your soul?

How? Never mind the demons, and the spiritual world that surrounds our natural world every single day and if it were not for God’s divine protection do you think you would be so safe from all the traps and snare that are laid for your feet?

Never mind the lack of peace, never mind the constant struggles inside your mind because “to him that knoweth to do good and do it not, it is a sin” completely IGNORING all those things for a moment, how does anyone take the comfort that their eternal soul is secure out of the daily equation, in seemingly “never-minding” that we are never once promised that we have all the time in the world to WAIT while allowing the weight of all those earthly hindrances to steal day after day while we have no promise of the next day. 

It is ALL of the world, the world that scripture warns us and warns us to stay out of. The world can mean many different struggles for different people.

It is not always about money, but it all equates the same. ANYTHING we place above God or the service and ANYTHING that prevents us from following him with our whole hearts and lives completely surrendered to him.

That is why we are told that WE must LAY ASIDE all these weights.

God does not place that weight on us… the world does and we have to be willing to refuse to carry it and we can’t blame that one on God. 

This is one Jesus’ warnings on the subject.

Luke 12:15-20: ” And he said unto them, Take heed, and BEWARE of covetousness: for a man’s life consiseth not in the abundance of things he possesseth. 

And he spake a parable unto them, saying, The ground of a certain rich man brought forth plentifully: And he thought within himself, saying, What shall I do, because I have no room where to bestow my fruits?”

And he said, This will I do: I will pull down my barns, and build greater; and there will I bestow (store) all my fruits and my goods. and I will say unto my soul,  Soul, thou hast much goods laid up for many years; take thine ease, eat, drink, and be merry. 

But God said unto him, Thou fool, this night thy soul shall be required of thee: then whose shall those things be, which thou hast provided?”  

He went on to encourage us to lay up those treasures in heaven because the concerns and desires of this world that became as weights will drag us down. And this is also so clear in his parable of the sower and the seed, AGAIN warning us about this world and getting caught up in it rather that the things of God.

Matthew 13:3-9: “And he spake many things unto them in parables, saying, Behold, a sower went forth to sow;

And when he sowed, some seeds fell by the way side, and the fowls came and devoured  them up;

Some fell upon stony places, where they had not much earth; and forthwith they sprang up, because they had no deepness of earth: and when the sun was up, they were scorched: and because they had no root, they withered away.

And some fell among thorns; and the thorns sprang up and choked them:

But others fell into good ground, and brought forth fruit, some an hundredfold, some sixtyfold, some thirtyfold. Who hath ears to hear, let him hear.”  

Do you recognize all the different human conditions going on here?

Think about it, the way side, just going through life, not caring one way or another and those are absolutely devoured because no one is caring if they make it or not.

The stony places in hardened hearts and unrepentant, unyielding, stubborn, and prideful.

Too “shallow” to make the long haul, all for it until the going gets tough and then they gotta get going… their own way, AWAY from God. 

And the thorns of this world, the pain, the sorrow, the hurt, and injustice, all those things that prick, mar, and scar.

BUT Jesus told us this in his word, Song of Solomon 2:1,2: “I AM the rose of Sharon, and  the lily of the valleys. 

As the lily AMONG the thorns SO IS my love among the daughters.”

 For every single human condition there is a relief and cure in God’s word, IF we will seek it and have faith to believe it.

That faith and assurance, NOT in ourselves or our abilities but faith that He is and He will fulfil all his promises to us IF we do what his word tells us to do.

That is that good ground that he cultivates for his seed and to bring forth HIS fruit. And as he told us to “hear if we have ears to hear” meaning if our heart is set on him and our thoughts on things eternal to HEAR him.  

Continuing, Matthew 13:18-23: Hear  ye therefore the parable of the sower. When any one hearth the word of the kingdom, and understandeth it  not, then cometh the wicked one, and catcheth (snatches) away that which WAS sown in his heart. This is which received seed by the way side. 

But he that received the seed into stony places,  the same is he that heareth the word, and anon (immediately) with joy receiveth it; Yet hath he not root in himself, but dureth (endures) for a while:  for when tribulation OR persecution ariseth BECAUSE of the word, by and by he is offended. 

He also that received seed among thorns is he that heareth the word : And the CARE OF THIS WORLD, and the deceitfulness of riches, CHOKE THE WORD,  and he becometh unfruitful. 

But he that received seed in the good ground IS he that heareth the word, and understandeth it;  which also beareth fruit, and bringeth forth, some hundredfold, some sixty, some thirty.”  Those “places” those weights. those are the things that prevent our growth, prevent us from bearing fruit and will certainly crush that precious seed planted by the Lord himself and eventually even crush us under them.

God never told us to wait on this world or to wait for things in this world to change.

We are to FOLLOW HIM and WAIT for him, not this world and we can never carry that weight. We were never meant to.

The only one who can is the only one who already holds it ALL in the middle of his nail scarred hand.

Φλογίζω Σαλπιζω  NB 2018

 

“PREPARED” part #1, preparing for the wedding of a King

And the Spirit and the bride say, COME. And LET him that HEARETH say, COME. And LET him that is athirst COME and take of the WATER OF LIFE freely.” Revelation 22:17 

This is quite an invitation and what I love about this verse, it that it IS an invitation.

This is a wedding that had not happened because although they ARE speaking as one they are named SEPERATELY so what am I even talking about? So glad you asked:)!

We all know that marriage in all cultures is considered a covenanted  process, a beautiful celebration with the families giving their very best to provide for that wedding, depending on your location and beliefs, either the grooms family or the brides family but either way, ALL cultures hold marriage with the same honor, reverence, and life long commitment. 

No shock that the enemy has chosen marriage, TRUE marriage as God intended between a male and a female as his hottest battle ground. If he can pervert the very DEFINITION of marriage, he can attempt to confuse and twist one of the MAJOR end time teachings of the New Testament.

As Paul said, the great MYSTERY that IS Christ, His bride, which IS the church and the great Marriage Supper of the Lamb, which the absolute culmination of ALL things that have ever been since He spoke everything into creation, ALL that has been and ALL that will EVER be will be merged into oneness at that wedding.

Just as he came to the garden and walked and talked with Adam, just as he came down and spoke with Abram, as he let Moses just glimpse his glory, just as he spoke through the prophets, giving each a little insight into his WORLD, his beauty and his majesty, that they could NEVER effectively put into words.

He came down as a baby and even in that humble beginning, His great glory and majesty could not be concealed. The angels HAD to worship, they had to ANNOUNCE the arrival. 

Offerings in the form of gifts of gold, frankincense, and myrrh HAD to be brought before him because ALL kings and ALL nations WILL bow before him. People of ALL nations, languages, and tribes WILL bring their offerings of praise before him in that day. In that day our WORLDS will become ONE.

Prophecy had been given since the dawn of time to ease humans into this, all the prophecies as they eagerly awaited his arrival on earth as Messiah. Thousands of years, with prophets FULFILLING the words of OTHER prophets, which tells us a little of what level of preparation was needed. Think of John the Baptist, who fulfilled the words of the prophet Isaiah and Malachi.

John 1:15-23:   “John bare witness of him and cried, saying, THIS IS HE OF WHOM I SPAKE, He that cometh after me is preferred before me. And of his fullness have ALL received, and grace FOR grace.

For the law was given by Moses, but GRACE AND TRUTH CAME BY JESUS CHRIST.

No man hath seen God at any time: the only begotten Son, which is in the bosom of the Father, he hath DECLARED him.

And THIS is the record of John, when the Jews sent priests and Levites from Jerusalem to ask, Who art thou? And he confessed, and denied not; but confessed, I am NOT the Christ.

And they asked him, What then? Art thou Elisas? {they knew the prophecy but Jesus said that John WAS the foretold voice fulfilling this prophecy} And he said, I am NOT. Art thou that prophet? And he answered and said, No. Then said they unto him, Who art thou? THAT WE MAY GIVE AN ANSWER TO THEM THAT SENT US, What sayest thou of thyself?

He said, I AM THE VOICE OF ONE CRYING IN THE WILDERNESS, MAKE STRAIGHT THE WAY OF THE LORD, as SAID the prophet Esaias (Isaiah).” 

They could HEAR “the voice” that just did not want to “hear” they did not want to acknowledge the time they were entering, just as those today have “sent” their messengers in attempt to tear down the Gospel of Christ, hoping to silence THE VOICE that WILL NOT SILENCED, that VOICE shall bellow from the very mountain tops.

So just what DID Isaiah say? Isaiah 40:3-5:”  The VOICE of him that crieth in the wilderness, PREPARE YE THE WAY OF THE LORD, MAKE STRAIGHT IN THE DESERT A HIGHWAY FOR OUR GOD.

EVERY VALLEY SHALL BE EXALTED (lifted up)  AND EVERY MOUNTAIN AND HILL SHALL BE MADE LOW : AND THE CROOKED PLACES SHALL BE MADE STRAIGHT, AND THE ROUGH PLACES PLAIN  (smoothed out): 

AND THE GLORY OF THE LORD SHALL BE REVEALED, AND ALL FLESH SHALL SEE IT TOGETHER: FOR THE MOUTH OF THE LORD HATH SPOKEN IT.

WHY? Why WAS and IS a preparation needed?

Well, think about those verses, this was to prepare people for an encounter with God.

In preparing for this preparation, EVEN the angel Gabriel was SENT to Zacharias, to proclaim that he and his aged wife would have a child, a chosen child and even that there were to name him John, which literally means “grace” and given John’s commission BEFORE he was even conceived in Elisabeth’s womb. 

And this was that commission, the words of the angel Gabriel as recorded in Luke 1:17:AND HE SHALL GO FORTH IN THE SPIRIT AND POWER OF ELIAS, TO TURN THE HEARTS OF THE FATHERS TO THE CHILDREN, AND THE DISOBEDIENT TO THE WISDOM OF THE JUST; TO MAKE READY A PEOPLE PREPARED FOR THE LORD.”

How do you prepare people to the fact that their worlds are about to be rocked by the arrival of one, who will have the ability to miraculously heal the sick, restore sight to the blind, cause those bound by paralysis to rise and not only walk, but run and leap because of the joy he also placed in their recovered souls.

One who will SPEAK to the storms and command them to cease. SPEAK to demons and they should fall at his feet and  tremble in terror of him.

That he would have the ability to look through us, into our very souls and perceive EVERY single thought of not only our conscious mind but also our soul and heart.

One who would have such a gentleness and absolute tenderness that he would verbally defend women against the spoken and unspoken hatred and judgment of others, healing them not with touch of his hand but with his LOVE, giving them access to his very heart.

One who cried in sorrow with those who grieved. One who would walk on water and be transfigured into his glorious light before the very eyes of a select few, as he spoke with Moses and Elijah.

That he would not only raise the dead but that his own dead body would raise up (some symbolism in that, the resurrection his church NOW desperately needs).

HOW do you prepare people for that? Just as the Hebrews were  SCARED absolutely to death of him at Mount Sinai, they did not want to talk to him, they pleaded with Moses to be a go between.

As scared as they were, even SEEING his mercy, glory, and protection. How much more terrified would people have been had they NOT been prepared by these prophecies of what they should expect.

Now, as our scripture from Revelation tells us, those VOICES are to be heard and the first voice mentioned IS the voices speaking TOGETHER the SPIRIT and the bride speaking in complete unison.

God dealt with me several years ago, about the need for that surrender by his church a submission that would truly allow that merging, it is an old post, from 2014 and revised in 2015, but if you have a moment, please read it and it will help in understanding this one: Click here> merge,

I really believe that we have come into that unison, those who have sought have found and I also believe that the “invitations” are already being delivered.

I believe it is that close.

So I want you to look at a couple of things in that verse, okay, they are technically still separate, BUT they are speaking as ONE so that separation is merely location.

Remember with the Jewish grooms of the Old Testament, the groom RETURNS for his bride, there is NO question about their relationship ONLY the FINAL PREPARATIONS to be made so that she can join him.

So next time, I’ll get into our starter verse and we’ll look at that “wedding invitation” a little closer and decipher our “duties” in getting other PREPARED for the reign of Jesus Christ on this earth.

And no longer is it just an “invitation”, it is that they should be WASHED, clean,”clothed” and ready to enter into the doors. And NOTHING will EVER fully prepare THIS WORLD to meet its maker, who will not be visiting for walks in the cool of the evening or teaching chosen disciples but WILL take his place AMONG his people and for that I am not sure they could ever be completely prepared.

Φλογίζω Σαλπιζω  NB 2018

Other posts in this series:

Prepared Part #2 Oxygen to Fire

Prepared Part #3 Would-be wedding crashers washed inside out

PREPARED Part #4

 

“Coming out of the fire”

COMING OUT OF THE FIRE’

“O bless our God, ye people, and make the voice of his praise to be heard: which holdeth our soul in life, and suffereth not our feet to be moved (slip). For thou, O God, hast proved (tested) us;  thou hast tried (REFINED) us, as silver is tried. 

Thou broughtest us into the net; thou laidst affliction upon our loins.

Thou hast caused men to ride over our heads; we went through the fire and through the water: but thou broughtest us into a wealthy (an abundant) place.” Psalm 66:8-12 

When I wrote my last post, a little something else “jumped out” at me. Remember our story of Apostle Paul,  To refresh the point:

Acts 28:3,5: “And when Paul had gathered a bundle of sticks, and laid them on the fire, there came a viper OUT OF THE HEAT, and fastened onto his hand. And he shook OFF the beast INTO THE FIRE, and FELT (suffered) NO HARM.” 

This is one of those double mirrored meanings, there is an old saying “If you can’t take the heat get out of the kitchen” but for us, as Christians and desiring anything of the Kingdom, you better learn to love the heat.

I have always thought and taught that the biggest hindrance to the much-anticipated end time outpouring of the Spirit and the signs, wonders, and manifestation of the gifts of the Spirit is US!

We can be saved, we are saved, but we also have a choice, we can simply sit passively and enjoy that salvation OR we can desire and reach for something so much greater.

As Jesus said, ‘Greater works than these…” but those greater works come by a greater understanding and a greater submission into His Spirit and His will. As He also said when explaining WHY the disciples could NOT cast out the demon, “Howbeit this KIND goeth not out but by fasting and prayer.”  and part of that submission is surrendering to purification by His Holy Fire.

So lets check out the mirror side of the story of Paul.

Once we start to seek the Lord as he leads us gently into the conviction process and we do take stock of all the dreadful sins and worthless, unfruitful parts of us and we do TRY to gather all those dead, withered, useless “twigs” that the Lord reveals must be removed as we are  being grafted into the true vine. 

We CAN lay those things on the altar and PROMISE to “give” to God all those old ways that we are to forsake and never pick up again, only to find some that we aren’t so ready to surrender.

But what happens as that heat starts to get a little hotter and more of our carnality is being spiritually burned away, as we go through that process we often find ourselves suddenly presented with situations or circumstances that “bring out” those venomous beasts, often in the form of our own attitudes.

Bringing out nasty, rebellious beasts who ARE full of deadly spiritual poison and that clamp down on us spiritually, clinging to us in hope of avoiding that heat that will destroy them and purify us.

Change hurts and our “flesh” and carnal minds are never willing to go without a fight.

And how easy is for those “beasts” to want to flee form that purification. Just as Jesus also told the disciples, as He asked them to stand with Him during His time of sorrow and they could not.  

Matthew 26:41: “Watch and pray, that ye enter not into temptation: the spirit INDEED IS WILLING, but the flesh IS weak.” Which only confirms other verses throughout the Bible that teach us that we do have a very real war of the spirit versus the flesh being fought INSIDE of us.

So what happened?

Paul shook of that “beast”off, just as the Holy Spirit will shake off the shackles and chains of sin and bondage from off of us.

He will shake off every speck of dirt and dust from this world that clings to us.

IF WE WILL LET HIM.

And we also have to be willing to not only be shaken but also shake off those things within ourselves, fear, dread, anger, resentment all those things which MUST be surrendered to that purifying fire.

Doesn’t mean it won’t hurt, sometimes we have to let people go from our lives, we have to let jobs go, we have to let go of things we so desperately want to cling to, but spiritually they are “beasts” who are actually clinging to us.

It was VERY painful for Paul to have that creatures fangs, teeth whatever latched onto his hand and of course, it WILL hurt us, for a moment, but just as Paul SUFFERED no injury, that pain was TEMPORARY and God will NEVER allow us to be “injured” by anything we have “shaken off” in obedience to Him.

And by this SAME process those who feel the “heat”,of conviction and the need to surrender parts of themselves to that purification and YET REFUSE and allow those carnal “beasts” to stay attached preventing their “hands” from working in the Kingdom, and care more about keeping those things that God has commanded to be surrendered, they fall into the condemnation of “having their conscience SEARED with an hot iron”.

There is NO escaping the fire, just as the sacrifices of the Old Testament were consumed by fire as an answer that they had been ACCEPTED of the Lord.

That same fire STILL decides what IS accepted today.

Romans 12:1: ” I beseech (urge) ye therefore, brethrenthat ye PRESENT your bodies a LIVING SACRIFICE, HOLY, ACCEPTABLE UNTO GOD, which IS your reasonable service.”

The presence of God which was once held only in the Temple of God and allowed access to only by the High Priest has now through the death of Jesus on the cross been made manifest in the Temple of God which IS now inside of US!

1 Corinthians 3:16,17:”Know ye not that YE ARE the temple of God, and the Spirit of God DWELLETH IN YOU? 

If any man defile (destroys) the temple of God, him shall God destroy: FOR THE TEMPLE OF GOD IS HOLY, WHICH TEMPLE YE ARE.

And WHO is our God, WHO dwells within us?

Deuteronomy 4:24: For the Lord thy God IS a consuming fireeven a jealous God.” 

Jealous meaning that he does not play second to anything or anyone in our lives. His Holiness is a purifying fire that burns away all that CAN NOT stand in His presence nor inherit His kingdom.

As John gave us description.

Matthew 3:11:”I indeed baptize you with water unto repentance: but he that cometh after me IS mightier than I, whose shoes I am not worthy to bear: HE SHALL BAPTIZE YOU WITH THE HOLY GHOST AND WITH FIRE.”

Which was fulfilled in Acts 2:2-4: “And suddenly there came a sound from heaven as of a mighty rushing wind, and it filled ALL the house where they were sitting.

And there appeared unto them cloven tongues like as of fire (divided flames), and IT SAT UPON EACH OF THEM.

And they were FILLED with the Holy Ghost, and began to speak with other tongues (languages) as the Spirit GAVE them utterance  (spoke unto them).”   

The bridging between the books and the Temple of Stone becoming the Temple of the Heart.

Hebrews 12:18-29: “For ye are NOT come unto the mount that might not be touched, and that burned with fire, NOR unto blackness, and darkness, and tempest.

And the sound of a trumpet, and the voice of words; which the voice they that heard intreated (begged) that the word should NOT be spoken to them any more:

For they could NOT endure that which was commanded, And if so much as a beast  touch the mountain, it shall be stoned, or thrust through with  a dart: And so terrible WAS the sight, that Moses said, I exceedingly fear and quake:

But YE are COME UNTO mount Sion, and unto the city of the living God, the heavenly Jerusalem, and to an innumerable company of angels.

To the general assembly and church of the firstborn, which are written in heaven, and to God, the Judge of all, and to the spirits of just men made perfect,

And to Jesus THE MEDIATOR OF THE NEW COVENANT, and to the blood of sprinkling, that speaketh better things than that of Abel.

See that YE REFUSE NOT HIM that speaketh, For if they escaped NOT who refused him that spake on earth, much more shall NOT we escape, IF WE TURN AWAY FROM HIM THAT SPEAKETH FROM HEAVEN: WHOSE VOICE SHOOK THE EARTH;

But now he hath promised, saying, YET ONCE MORE I SHAKE NOT THE EARTH ONLY, BUT ALSO HEAVEN.

And THIS word, YET once more signifieth the REMOVING OF THOSE THINGS THAT ARE SHAKEN, as of things that are made, THAT THOSE THINGS WHICH CANNOT BE SHAKEN MAY REMAIN.

Wherefore we RECEIVING a kingdom which cannot be moved, let us have grace, WHEREBY WE SERVE GOD ACCEPTABLY WITH REVERENCE AND GODLY FEAR. FOR OUR GOD IS A CONSUMING FIRE.

God was so terrifying on Mount Sion that even Moses SHOOK with terror and at the sound of His voice the Hebrews trembled and BEGGED that He only talk to Moses and NOT to them.

This IS the same God that gently calls us today to allow Him to shake all those things until all that remains are the good things of Him that will remain and He calls us to not only ALLOW but to EMBRACE His Holy purification process.

And as that process unfolds, it is not uncommon for many “beasts” to rise up in resistance to that heat.

1 Peter 1:6,7: “Wherefore ye greatly rejoice though now for a SEASON, if need be, YE ARE IN HEAVINESS THROUGH MANIFOLD TEMPTATIONS (in distress due to many trails) that the TRIAL (genuineness) of your faith BEING MUCH MORE PRECIOUS THAN OF GOLD THAT PERISHETH, THOUGH IT BE TRIED (tested) WITH FIRE, might be found unto praise and honour and glory at the appearing of Jesus Christ:”

God reveals the process this way:

Isaiah 48:10:”Behold, I have REFINED thee, but not with  (as) silver; I HAVE CHOSEN (tested) THEE IN THE FURNACE OF AFFLICTION.” 

So whatever those “beasts”may be today, no matter how hot that fire is getting or just how uncomfortable that “heat” is starting to feel, know that it is a process and EMBRACE it!

Revelation 3: 18(a): “I counsel thee to buy of me gold tried in the fire…”  

So don’t be afraid and whatever starts coming out of that fire.. LET IT COME, HE WILL TAKE CARE OF YOU! 

As those are his words, and THAT IS HOW GOLD IS REFINED AND YOU ARE MORE PRECIOUS TO HIM THAN GOLD! 

Love till next time!

Related posts: “Groovin’ the gauntlet”     “Counting wrong”     “Laying down some odds”

“Go for the gold…”            “In the den”               “Bought & Sold”

“Gazingstock”

Φλογιζω Σαλπιζω Nb 2018

 

Parental Guidance Highly Suggested

“Hear O Israel: The Lord our God is one God. And thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thine heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy might. And these words, which I command thee this day, shall be in thine heartand thou shalt teach them diligently unto thy children, and thou shalt talk of them when thou sittest in thine house, and when thou walkest by the way, and when thou liest down, and when thou risest up.” Deuteronomy 6:4-7

Trying to determine true statics on kids and Christianity is like the proverbial needle in the haystack.

But it is very fair to say considering the verse above that it doesn’t really matter what school stats would suggest because this is parental responsibility.

According to the history on it, “Sunday school” was started in Britain as a way of not only helping the street children, but also teaching them about God and educating them.

And in our country schools used mainly the word of God as a teaching tools for reading and writing.

Many of our early leaders WERE self-taught, the Bible being the number one book used for that purpose.

So it is not a shocker that schools of yesteryear were safe learning place that parents could entrust their children to, of course you have to take the corporal punishment out of that equation, I for one absolutely do not agree with hitting or spanking, or any form of physical violence as a method of discipline or learning “incentive”.

But they were something else in the old days as far as the term “strong disciplinarians” could go.

My mother has horror stories of the days when children were paddled for not knowing their multiplication table. And as she said, if you miss one you were sure to miss another. It is just absolutely wrong for anyone other than a parent to have that kind of authority over a child.

But we have as a society  given entirely too much power to influence the minds and more importantly the SOULS of our children to the “world” schools, and even religious organizations.

As we know when prayer and the teachings of God were removed form public schools replaced with Darwinism and the absolute intelligence insulting nonsense of the big bang and evolution, we invited the moral downfall of society as we knew it.

And at the end of the day it is up to each one of us to take back that power, that back that authority that we have blindly given others BECAUSE God only gave that authority to parents.

I have heard people remark after being called out about saying or doing things that are not right in front of their children, only to reply that “They hear worse at school” and everyone could argue the filth that they see on television and movies and even argue that at some point they “will be exposed to it anyway” but here is the deal, EVEN if they hear bad language at school, they should NOT hear it at home. EVEN if they have saw filth on television, you have to ask, WHO is monitoring that television? WHO is watching over what they are watching, witnessing, and being exposed to?

Remember PG for PARENTAL GUIDANCE? That is NOT just for television. God expects us to use our PG authority in all areas of our children’s lives and even if children are grown adults, they are STILL your children. 

No matter what mistakes have been made in the past, the present and future can be changed for the better by enacting that parental guidance in our own lives, by being the example that God intended for us to be.

And as long as we have breath in these bodies, IT IS NEVER TOO LATE! That is why God told US to teach our own children, of course we can not protect the from the world and the things in the world but at the end of the day, what are taught by parents and family will outweigh those other influences.

And of course people can fall in with the “wrong crowd” and go completely “hog wild” as the saying goes, kinda reminiscent of the Prodigal son there, but have hope in this.

Proverbs 22:6: “Train up a child in the way he should go: and when he is old, he WILL NOT depart from it.”

Most of us have been guilty of running amok in our youth, (some of us seriously amok) but there is so much comfort in knowing that God ALWAYS has His eyes on us AND our children.

That is why it is so important for those who are new to Christ to STAY in Christ because we are PROMISED our households and our families to a thousand generations, we are NOT saved just for the sake of being saved.

As part of that salvation, we are to lead others to Him, that His light may also shine into their lives also and  that light radiates and it touches so many others, which is why when one family member accepts Christ usually the others soon follow.

It ONLY takes one person to STAND up and declare faith in Jesus to influence many generations.

Think about it as we start a New Year, if you have a school aged child KNOW who is teaching them and what they are being taught and do not be afraid to speak AGAINST those things that are against God because you are actually the one with the GREATER influence.

And if you doubt that, think of it in the negative, think about all the people who belong to hate groups BECAUSE they were BORN into hate groups and we ARE products of our environment and once that environment changes WE CAN CHANGE ALSO.

This kinda goes with my “when in Rome” thought, it has been on my heart and mind so much that THIS has to change. Take back your place in the family and take back your heritage in the Lord.

Psalm 127:3,4: ” Lo, (OT for pay attention) Children ARE an heritage of the Lord; and the fruit of thy womb is his reward. As arrows in the hand of a mighty man; so are children of the youth.

We ARE blessed with children. We ARE entrusted of God with those children and they are HIS and we are privileged with the task of nurturing their hearts, their souls, and their minds and guide them on their journey into adulthood but even more so in discovering  WHO HE CREATED THEM TO BE.

And the greatest reflection that will show in them is WHO we understand HE created US to be.

So as you make your resolutions for this New Year, think about what you want for your family, if you don’t have kids, think about maybe another family member. We all struggle, we all need help at different times in life, and we can all be a light, and especially as parents, be that parental guide for your child, no matter how young or old they are because you lead and they will follow, maybe not in a split second, but stay on the Lord’s path and they will… just as scripture tells us, NOT depart from that way.

So be that example this year, even when you don’t feel like being an example.. BE ONE.

Εξυπνιζω NBJ 2018

 

W.O.M.E.N. of Ministry

“And when he was come into the temple, the chief priests and the elders of the people came unto him as he was teaching, and said, By WHAT AUTHORITY DOEST THOU THESE THINGS? and WHO GAVE THEE THIS AUTHORITY?

And Jesus answered and said unto them,  I also will ask you one thing, which if you tell me, I in like wise will tell you by what authority I do these things. the baptism of John, whence (where) was it? from heaven or of men? 

And they reasoned with themselves, saying, If we shall say from heaven; he will say unto us, Why then did ye not believe him? But if we shall say, Of men; we fear the people; for all hold John as a prophet.

And they answered Jesus, and said, We cannot tell (do not know). And he said unto them, Neither tell I you by what authority I do these things.” Matthew 21:23-27
This is one of those extremely comforting Bible stories that remind us that Jesus Christ IS our High Priest who DOES understand every single thing we go through.
I really detest the fact that I have to use this blog to address this issue that I am growing quite tired of addressing and we will deal with that at the end of this post.
I am one of those “lucky” ladies who have to privilege of removing my own (WP) followers.

Satan does like to send some “live “ones my way.
And occasionally the OTHER “live” ones are sent this way also.

So between the freak-show Casanova wannabe’s who seem to NOT notice the title REVEREND and think I might be up for some..something and dealing with the “Good ol’ boy’s ministerial club” THIS sure can be a whole lotta fun!
I tried unsuccessfully last night to leave about a fifteen hundred word comment on a fellow bloggers post, he had recently started to follow my blog and after I read some of his work, there was no secret about how he felt about “females” in ministry, so I was just going to give him a different point of view but unfortunately when I hit “post comment” I was met with “invalid security entry” and eventually just removed him from following me for the second time, being that anti-female, I know if they are reading it is for the wrong reason.

So rather than write all of it again, “explaining” “FEMALES” in ministry, I decided to just “once and for all it here and just send this out to anyone else who wants to argue the point.

A point I am NOT going to argue. I WILL say my peace because I am sick to my death of it and THIS IS MY BLOG, I didn’t go looking for their churches, so if they want to come here, and read my posts in some sort of hope of finding “heretical” proof as fodder to kindle the fire as they tie all of us “female folk” to the stake for “preaching without a Paulinist license” well, they may just have another thing coming.

This is NOT just for me, I WANTED to do this for ALL the women whom Christ HAS CALLED, who are going through or have been through this gauntlet of the “brotherhood” and for those whose wounds received while running that gauntlet has left them laying in ashes, I want to encourage you, my sisters, GET BACK UP!
Women in ministry… stands for THIS… Wounded, Ostracized, Maligned, Estranged, Negated.

I will share the “high-lights” of my ministerial journey and I am sure many of you have been there and many more I hope to encourage, because it IS not just you, it is par for running the course set before us.

Of course NO ONE tells us this upfront, because after others discover that we have been called, the “wounding” starts.
When I was first saved, I was so scared and shy that when they called on me to testify I would actually shake and dreaded being called on to read a scripture because I was absolutely terrified and quite content to sit there and listen.

But soon I started being awoken in the dead of night with an overwhelming need to read the Bible, as I try to be so clear about my past, I had been an absolute heathen and knew only what I had studied with my Dad while growing up.
And soon this became more of an obsession and I took my study Bible to work and studied every possible chance I had, I could not put it down.
After I became a mother, I would take care of my baby, and at that time my husband was gone about twelve hours a day and of course my family visited us a lot, but my point is this, I would take care of my baby, who soon became a toddler, on onward, clean my house, take of my pets, do ALL that life requires and then after my family had fallen asleep, I would spend the rest of the night studying the Bible until four or five am and get up the next day and do it ALL over again.
So it does irk me pretty badly when these guys who have had the PRIVILEGE of mothers and wives “taking care of them” and had the PRIVILEGE of seminary school and classes to learn what I, and many other ladies had to absolutely sacrifice to learn and I am NOT complaining and I am NOT begrudging and I thank Jesus EVERY DAY for the precious gift that HE has given me to be a MESSENGER of HIS Word.

And I know MANY other WOMEN who have been through this same “course of training” and what really bothers me the most is when CERTAIN guys and ESPECIALLY certain denominations teach that somehow WOMEN would do all this to somehow gain power to USURP some magical authority over them.
Look dudes, DON’T even kid yourselves! I have no desire to be anything OVER a man, I want to minister to the ones God has sent me to and as far as the old “men pray for men, women for women go” that kind of thinking does not even belong in a church!

If anyone is thinking this way.. instead of worrying about who is laying hands on who, they really need to hit the altars and get their mind right.

My first pastor was an absolute awesome man of God and was the first to invite a “lady” to minister at that particular church, which was one time and after he passed away the new pastor also “ALLOWED” (wow, what a term..) another lady to minister, as soon as she stepped foot behind the podium, one entire pew of the congregation got up and left.

She happens to be a dear friend and just having SEEN this was such an encouragement to me in my later years, because at this time, I had NOT been technically called.
But in such grace and beauty she APPEARED unscathed, she ministered a beautiful candle-light sermon (A candle which I STILL have to this day, and I am also sure she also financed all the candles, holders, and tiny flashlights for the children, because that is another aspect to being female, YOU pay for your own ministry) But she did not show one tear, but I KNOW how deep that cut had to have been and how deep that scar has to go this day.

BUT she STOOD, she stood just as Steven stood as they stoned him, she STOOD just Paul stood when he took lash after lash, repeatedly and on more than one occasion.

She stood just as Mary stood when they laughed in her face when she announced Jesus’ resurrection, to which I have never read one APOLOGY given to Mary for outright accusing her of being a mentally deranged liar.

And we have NEVER discussed how she was wounded, ostracized, maligned, estranged, and negated.

My favorite one is negated, it means “rendered worthless as a truth” and she probably never had a clue what her stand would mean for the rest of us BUT God did.

And others who have been ostracized by their own fathers, maligned and estranged for BEING a vessel of God and choosing to OBEY God at the price of having their own father’s DESPISE them and think they are heretics on their way to hell.

I have listened to them tell their stories as ENCOURAGEMENT to those of us who would SOON travel that road, stories told their tears and heartache, bearing evidence that those wounds and those tears would only cease existence once wiped away by the Saviors hand in New Jerusalem.

But I was blessed on that count, I have a very supportive father, who has had his fair share of discussion on the subject with those not so inclined.

And my late uncle, whose influence is one of the reasons why I choose to carry my maiden name into ministry.

He was who encouraged me to be bold and to tackle the really difficult subjects that I usually work with and his encouragement to NEVER see myself as a WOMAN but as what GOD called me to be.

And when God opened the door for me to start writing a blog, he had actually prayed with me the day BEFORE I wrote my very first post.

I was so excited and also TERRIFIED, because the particular church had an impeccable reputation and I was scared to death to even try to articulate the word of God under their name after having spent a lot of television time listening to the sermons of the pastor years earlier, it was hard to stand in that group.

But I tried and I did my best and I pulled back a lot, things that now under my own ministry, I am “free” to say without the fear of “bringing reproach” on another ministry.

And it is my uncle’s sweet face and gentle voice calling me “little girl” and encouraging me EVERY single time I feel the anointing fire rise up in me to tackle a subject that I KNOW is just going to garner a little fuel to the destructive fire of hatred and misogyny that burns against me.

As I go a little farther, I could really use that encouragement as I go through my own story, so I’ll probably add his beautiful face in this post.
But on with it when I personally was called there were only THREE people in the entire church that knew, including myself.

By this time things had changed and there was still ONE preacher whose family had always been part of the church and somehow one night the subject of female ministers was brought up at which he was quick to pull out the scriptural big guns of SILENCE.

To which I asked from my pew, in a new-found boldness, “What if God ANOINTS a woman?” to which my question was met with a glare and when his appointment time rolled around again it was a”being tied to the whipping post” extravaganza.

This actually had answered a prayer for me, I had technically received my “hands on and prophecy” calling through another minister, who mainly ministered in another state and came by appointment, and this entire time, he felt that I was being disobedient to that calling by not doing anything to proceed forward.
And I was always thinking, “You just do not have a clue what I am up against” and he didn’t, he had never seen this, because the majority of the congregation all held the same belief, we just WANTED to enjoy God and the gender of the messengers was of no importance ONLY the anointing of that messenger.
And I had prayed and prayed and asked the Lord to please tell him that I was not being disobedient, I just did not know what on earth I was supposed to do in the situation that I was in.

God worked out so that he did come to church on the other “ministers” night and heard EXACTLY what I had to deal with, and he sat there that night, every ounce of color completely drained out of his face, (not to mention mine) as we ALL were thoroughly beaten with the “twisted” classic verses from the Books of Timothy and Titus, and left with the resounding voice from the pulpit that WOMEN ARE TO BE SILENT IN CHURCH and ANY woman who preaches is NOT of God.

What really broke my heart about this was that one night (when Sir Silence WAS NOT there) a tiny little girl had asked for prayer because she wanted “to be a preacher like her late Pa-paw when she grew up” and we had all prayed and asked the Lord’s anointing on her life and then three weeks later, that same child is HEARING this.
But for me, those scriptures WERE NOTHING NEW, I had spent many nights crying and praying, asking the Lord, HOW, how on earth could I possibly do this? HOW when Paul’s teaching said ABSOLUTELY NOT?
Does anyone think, really BELIEVE that women in ministry DO NOT KNOW THESE SCRIPTURES?
We probably know them much better because we have had to tearfully WEIGH them against the SPIRIT OF GOD calling and prayerfully consider HOW THEY ARE BOTH ACCURATE.

To understand this, you HAVE to understand that the Bible is made up of WRITTEN accounts and Paul’s teachings are MAINLY LETTERS to individuals and churches AT THAT TIME.

Of course it IS the inspired WORD OF GOD, but as Paul said in the infamous 1 Timothy 2:12: ” But I suffer not (do not permit) a woman to teach, nor to usurp (have) authority over a man, but to be in silence.”

Now we have a couple of things going on here. Paul WAS persecuted, just like the persecutions WE are suffering. He wrote quite a bit about it.

ALL the disciples went through it because what they were called of God to do what did not line up in the elders and leaders EYES of what scripture taught.
They were not allowing for the supreme authority of God over human action.

Remember when Mary questioned “How can THIS be?” and Gabriel replied that “With God NOTHING shall be impossible.”

Paul also used the word I, he DID NOT say that “The LORD suffers not”…. the history on this is that he was under such persecution from a group of Jewish women, who were basically coming in and teaching AGAINST the Gospel, that HE forbade women to speak and that they had to ask their husbands whatever they needed to know AT HOME, because they were TO BE SILENT during his teachings.

So since that time you have this scripture being ran wild with and used a power tool against wives and women when PAUL also SAID this:

Galatians 3:28: ” There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither bond nor free, THERE IS NEITHER MALE NOR FEMALE; FOR YE ARE ALL ONE IN CHRIST.”
And what I find most HYPOCRITICAL about guys who carry this doctrine is the fact that say that it is perfectly “okay” for women to teach OTHER women and children… and it is “okay” for them to sing, answer phones at church… all sorts of activities INVOLVING THE USE OF ONE’S VOICE… and YET they argue the SILENCE scriptures.

That is a complete contradiction.
Using THAT same scripture… at NO time did he make allowance for these activities!
Did he boys? SILENCE MEANS SILENCE.
And this really tells the tale.. it is not about being scriptural pure and right.
It IS about good ol’ time honored male dominance.

Of course we are “permitted” (WOW, again what a word) to speak when we are making your phone calls, having church sales, teaching those women and children that you don’t want to have to deal with… rather convenient.

It is also the fear of their own shortcomings. It is their own need for church house superiority when we know that in the true body of Christ, HUMAN SUPERIORITY does NOT exist!

So I want to ask those who seem to think we would subject ourselves to this torment and hatred if our callings were NOT from God just for the purpose of somehow having “authority over a man” a few questions.
I want to ask WHAT was receiving your calling like?
Did you have the privilege to have your pastor proudly announce to the entire church that “Brother—– has been called to preach”?
Did everyone shake your hand and congratulate you?
Did your Mom and Grandmother cry tears of joy?
Did you receive calls of congratulations of fellow clergymen and invites to discuss thoughts on scripture?

I am SURE you did!

Let me tell you what it is like for US.

Our callings are kept on the down low and often we are under such pressure from those who say they are unbiased but secretly are, that we have to check and recheck every single word, scripture, and reference or face the “correction” by our peers which only “proves’ we shouldn’t be “doing a man’s job” anyway.

I have been under a couple of pastor’s and the one that shocked me the most was this little slip, I HAD the appointment and so he opens service and went rather long and brought me up with these UNFORGETTABLE words, “Well, I BAKED the cake, now Sister Nina is going to FROST it.”
Yeah, it was nice to know my sermon was PREJUDGED TO BE FLUFF.

And that is just about how seriously we usually get taken.
I did get some good feed back and a cute comment from one person who had noticed the remark.

And let those congratulatory hand shakes turn to looks of disgust and the reproach by fathers, coupled with the fear of people you GENUINELY like, turning on you because they now think your “of the devil” and no longer want anything to do with you.

And if you complain about the inequality, somehow it becomes YOUR job to go talk to Sir Silence and CONVINCE him of your argument because the church is NOT going to tangle with him, but if YOU can get HIM to CHANGE HIS MIND, that will be groovy.

It took FOUR years to finally get my ordination, a paper that means nothing to many but meant everything to me, for me it was PROOF that this is God’s will and I had asked God that.

And YES, my mother cried and my sister cried BUT they were crying because they KNEW what I had endured for that “piece of paper”.

A paper that must be renewed yearly and a separate “paper” allowing certification from my state to perform legal marriages that does not even HAVE a female option, it is pre-printed with the word HIS and HE before the name space that is filled out.

Now this is a state that has LEGAL homosexual marriage BUT not a form with a he/her for ministers names.
It gets better, this will be a bit graphic, but I’m not going to hide the attacks of the enemy due to my own discomfort, congratulatory calls.. yeah.. the very night after I received my calling, my telephone rang, I answered it and was promptly met with a man’s voice which said ” Will you———, to translate a little differently from his actual words… “perform certain oral services on a certain appendage”, now that one I could not even bring myself to even try to relay to my husband.

I have also received very select pm messages asking sexual questions, I would have been happy to discuss the Word and discuss SERIOUS concerns but as a servant of God, I KNEW the motivation behind it was NOT for the Gospel.
And my latest, shortly after starting the new “ladies”blog, I gained a “follower” whose profile held nothing back as far as intent nor his very graphic descriptions of what he felt were his “attributes”, that one I did let my husband read before removing him, because I have finally reached the point that I am no longer shocked, I understand that satan feels the need remind me of his feelings about my worth, and all I could truly say to this one was “Seriously?”
TELL ME, male ministers have to deal with this!?

I do realize we ALL are fought but you guys do not have a clue as to the weapons used against us.

And unfortunately certain of our brothers of the cloth ARE the greatest weapons in satan’s arsenal against us!
And those discussions of scripture, well, the most memorable of mine were with a guy who is absolutely as hard-core as it gets, his wife did not wear pants, drive, nor was she allowed to have ANY money whatsoever, or any knowledge of their finances, and any contact I HAD to have with him became a ” sword fight” of scripture to try to “test” my knowledge of the Bible.
It also consisted of the age-old “make-up wearing JEZEBEL” that tempts men to lust, to which I finally shut him up with, “Jesus knows I wear make-up, I wear it for me, and I’ll wear it like a clown if I want to.”

And Jesus taught that the responsibility for lust fell upon the one feeling it.
But my most favorite questions he asked as he was “agreeing with women “preachers” is this gem… “Do you know WHY God called women?” .. I couldn’t WAIT to hear this one.. so I asked “Why?” to which he replied “Because MEN wouldn’t do THEIR job’s.”

Hmm. is that it? Considering the scriptures stating that we “are pre-ordained, predestined, and CALLED BEFORE THE FOUNDATIONS OF THE WORLD”

I would truly think that HE already knew what gender that He would create us to be.
But who am I to argue the WISDOM OF MAN?!!!

When I feared truly falling into disobedience I reached out to another pastor who is of the same belief system, and he had just announced one members call, and so after church, I BOLDLY (it took every ounce of courage I had) asked him, what was his thoughts on female ministers, he was QUICK to inform that “he was NOT recruiting” so I told him that was no big deal, I wasn’t asking for that, I just wanted to know if he thought it was acceptable with God.
He goes on to tell me that he grew up with women and personally had no problem with it BUT that his congregation would never “go for it”.
The irony in this was that this particular pastor is black with an all white (or at that time) congregation and my being a white woman asking a black man to advise me with my calling our chat was truly the equivalent of something that might have been said between our ancestors …You know, like “I am okay with you… I actually HAVE black friends.. but I can’t let my white friends know that.”

That was another time I was so hurt and embarrassed that I had even asked that I told no one for YEARS.
I truly DID NOT even want him to “take me in”, I honestly, at the time was seeking spiritual guidance, someone to help me understand what I was called to do and how to go about that and be in the will of God.

But God is so good and soon reconfirmed many things to me and sent me to a church where I was viewed as a PERSON, not male or female and opened up a path for me.
But I did have to leave everything I knew and walk by faith, not knowing if those doors would be slammed and the constant voices back and forth of “your going to hell because women are to be silent” versus “You must obey the Lord.. REGARDLESS.”

I know this has been long, but it has been necessary, because as I said GOD GAVE ME MY MINISTRY and I will not allow those who would read my work as fuel to further reproach and tear apart women ministers to continue to do so without a little warning, “TOUCH NOT MINE ANOINTED AND DO MY PROPHETS NO HARM”

This ministry is for ANYONE who wishes to stop by and hopefully study the Word of God with me and know that GOD DOES LOVE THEM!
And I would also take a moment to THANK all my TRUE brothers in the Lord, there is a world full of awesome, God-fearing men out there who do not hold these misogynistic beliefs toward us.

So I think it suffices to say, I have taken my stripes and if you are a woman going through this, please KEEP praying, keep STUDYING, and be ATTENTIVE to every door the Lord opens and don’t be afraid to move on when he allows one to close

At the height of my struggle with it, I had a dream, in this dream I was walking in this building that had all these little side rooms, and they looked like little hospital chapel rooms, they all had wood-paneled walls, and I kept walking and saw one room with an older man standing and praying, and it was like I knew I was SUPPOSED to go in there, and I said “I can’t go in there, it’s all old guys” and it was just like “GO”, so I went in and the gentleman just looked at me for a moment and not saying a word went back to praying, so I started praying too and woke up.

I took that as comfort but I assure you it has not been easy.

And I want to give YOU the verse that the Lord allowed me to stand on and STILL stand on today.
REMEMBER those who were persecuted and falsely called evil BEFORE you.
REMEMBER what Jesus said when they were CONSTANTLY ACCUSING HIM.

Matthew 10:24-27: ” The disciple is not above his master, nor servant above his lord. It is enough for the disciple to be as his master (teacher) and the servant as his lord,

If they have called the master of the house Beelzebub (a devil)  how much more shall they call them of his house?

Fear them not therefore; for there is nothing covered, that shall not be revealed; and hid, that shall not be known.
What I tell you in darkness, that speak ye in the light: and what ye hear in the ear, that preach ye from the housetops.”

I will admit this was one I was stuck on for a while… the Lord kept taking me to it very early on and I was not even getting it and then one day……
It means this IF and they DID call Him a devil FOR doing right, as His servants, we will ALSO be treated badly.
But He tells us NOT to be afraid, but to PREACH what He gives us from the “housetops” meaning LOUDLY, BOLDLY, and FOR ALL THE WORLD TO HEAR!
When they try to shut you up and discourage you, REMEMBER this verse, from when they also tried to shut up Peter and FORBADE the apostle to preach Jesus:
Acts 5:29:” Then Peter and the other apostles answered and said, We ought to obey God RATHER than men.”
This is one God had a person give me BEFORE I even understood the true ramifications of it:
2 Timothy 2:3,4: “Thou therefore endure hardness, as a good soldier of Jesus Christ.
No man that warreth (battle) entangleth himself with the affairs of THIS life; that HE MAY PLEASE HIM WHO HATH CHOSEN HIM TO BE A SOLDIER.”
That one I actually have written on my Bible case.
And this one I have written on apiece of paper in the front cover of my Bible, MEMORIZE it and quote it over yourself.
It is ALSO written by Paul, whom they love to argue, read some of the things Paul went through and how often he was persecuted for ALSO carrying the Gospel.
1 Corinthians 15:10: ” But BY THE GRACE OF GOD I AM WHAT I AM; AND HIS GRACE WHICH WAS BESTOWED UPON ME WAS NOT IN VAIN…..”
I apologize again for the length of this but there is no way to highlight a seventeen year journey using five hundred words or less 🙂 and I truly pray this helps even one you to stand your ground and stay your path, because I for one would rather men hate me than to stand before God and know that I failed Him in what He sent me here to do.
I love all of you and God bless you for reading and I appreciate it truly!
And I promise no matter how tough it looks, TRUST HIM and He will show you the doors that He opened BEFORE you were even created!

Dedicated to my beautiful uncle… till we meet again on those golden streets…

   Monroe Brown

Φλογιζω, Σαλπιζω, Εξυπνιζω, NBJ 2018

This beautiful song got me through many nights of tears: Shared from YouTube:

For a little more about women and the Word, please check out: AWAKENING / THE FORGOTTEN CHILD

“Labor” Day

*ARCHIVED* 

” And I heard a voice from heaven saying unto me, Write, Blessed are the dead which die in the Lord from henceforth: Yea, saith the Spirit, THAT THEY MAY REST FROM THEIR LABOURS; AND THEIR WORKS DO FOLLOW THEM.” Revelation 14: 13

Ahh, tomorrow, here in America, we celebrate “Labor Day”, a day of course, set aside to honor the hard-working men and women who make our country strong and whose diligence in countless areas of service keep the economic ball rolling for our nation.

And also there are so many, such as nurses, doctors, firemen, emergency workers, repair people, and food service employees, many whom are actually REQUIRED to WORK on Labor Day.

I do admit that while pondering the best “spin” to propel the thought of the post, that I felt the need to tell all of you, I am NOT a Ballerina, nor do I dance, but this is for me, in relaying this message, that I am performing a grandiose version of “Swan Lake” WHILE wearing steel-toed work boots.

So if it seems a bit “ungraceful” and if the heavy boots donned during the dance step on toes, including my own, please pardon. I would also like to point out that this is NOT for new converts to Christ, this is for “seasoned” workers of the Kingdom, who once knew these things and now just need a “note attached to their time cards” to remind them that they can lose benefits due to poor job performance.

Better to hear it now, than to hear, something much like what Jesus told the Disciples, Sleep on now, and take your rest: behold, the hour IS at hand….  Here, my friends is the first of the very awkward “dance moves”, I must make, WE CAN NOT WORK OUR WAY TO SALVATION.

 Ephesians 2:8-10: For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that NOT of yourselves: it is the gift of God; NOT OF WORKS, lest any man boast. For WE ARE HIS WORKMANSHIP(creation) CREATED IN CHRIST JESUS UNTO (for) GOOD WORKS, which GOD HATH BEFORE ORDAINED (prepared) THAT WE SHOULD WALK IN THEM.”

Notice in our first verse the voice said that they may REST, and Jesus told them to take their rest. There is a very clear difference between trying to do our own work that we think is good enough for salvation, which again is an impossibility and doing the work that GOD preordained us to do. And to decide that we will rest as to have him grant us that rest.

But we still are REQUIRED to work in the Kingdom. And I BELIEVE in grace! I thank God for grace! I could lay at His feet for a thousand years just thanking Him for the grace He gave me, saving me, a miserable creature who in no way DESERVED that grace!

And that is what Paul was referring to. I have heard some on television completely blow off the judgements and really come against the teachings of those judgments.

I can’t figure this out because God has a Bible full of people WITH that job, without the forced warning from Jonah, Nineveh would have never repented, it WAS the warning God sent that made them AWARE that they were doing wrong and the Bible is full of warnings.  

My Goodness, People! To reiterate this for anyone who has not read prior ancient posts, there ARE TWO Babylon’s, the first ancient Babylon, the Prophet Jeremiah proclaimed the destruction and judgments against it.

BUT Jeremiah also proclaimed the judgment and destruction of FUTURE, SPIRITUAL BABYLON. The FULFILMENT of this IS what is spoken in Song of Solomon 7:9: ” And the roof of thy mouth like the best wine for my beloved, that goeth down sweetly, (smoothly) causing the lips of those that ARE asleep TO SPEAK.”

Jeremiah wrote the judgments that the Lord had commanded, Jeremiah 50:62-64: ” Then shalt thou say, O Lord, thou hast spoken against this place, to cut it off, that none shall remain in it, neither man nor beast, but that it shall be a desolate for ever. And it shall be WHEN thou hast made and end (finished) reading this book, THAT thou shalt bind a stone to it, and cast (THROW) it into the midst of EUPHRATES; And THOU SHALT SAY, THUS SHALL BABYLON SINK, AND SHALL NOT RISE FROM THE EVIL THAT I WILL BRING UPON HER;..”  

There is so much Bible prophecy linked up with the Euphrates, it has angels ‘bound”in it  that will be released and it dries up to prepare the way for the mighty war… HAS THIS ALREADY HAPPENED????? NO! Neither has many of the ABSOLUTELY HORRIFYING events foretold, but we have hope in the sealed words of the seven thunders and that is why we NEED to be so diligent NOW.

The fulfillment of the words of Jeremiah are Revelation 18:21: ” And a mighty ANGEL took up a STONE like a great millstone and CAST it into the sea, saying, THUS with violence shall that great city Babylon be thrown down, and SHALL BE FOUND NO MORE.

NO MATTER what country a person chooses to believe that”MYSTERY BABYLON” IS, one fact REMAINS.. THIS IS BIBLE, IT WILL HAPPEN and those who live in that country WILL be going about everyday life, MANY unsaved and completely UNAWARE of these prophecies yet to be fulfilled, and MANY MORE who have been force-fed “grace” to the point that they think they do no wrong in the eyes of a Holy God and have been taught that repentance and work are not a requirement, and SUDDENLY “Babylon” is attacked, from all sides and without warning, other than the Biblical truths of teaching of Jesus in how we KNOW these things shortly come and to be living lives accounted WORTHY TO ESCAPE these things, Babylon will be destroyed in one hour, one day FROM off the face of the earth.

HOW can anyone be perfectly comfortable NOT sharing the Gospel, NOT leading others to Christ, NOT using the gifts and talents HE has given them? How about all those who sit in bound in chains of demonic bondage of drug addictions, pornography, alcoholism, and so many other bondage, when GOD HAS GIVEN SOMEONE the PRAYER OF FAITH, given SOMEONE THE GIFT OF HEALING AND MIRACLES, when human beings sit in dread and terror, when GOD HAS GIVEN SOMEONE A WORD OF KNOWLEDGE, AND WORD OF PROPHECY,  A WORD TO BE “FITLY SPOKEN IN DUE SEASON” that would free that person’s mind and bring peace.

Gift after gift, talent upon talent, wasted and unused, because we are too busy, too lazy, too comfortable to be the LIGHT that HE LEFT US HERE TO BE while the world suffers in almost pitch black darkness, no wonder Jesus warned us, Revelation 2:4,5: ” Nevertheless I have somewhat against thee, because thou hast left thy first love. Remember therefore from whence thou art fallen, and repent, and do thy first works; or else I will come unto thee quickly, and remove thy candlestick (lampstand) out of his place, except (unless) thou repent.” 

Anyone want to argue that He does not expect us to work for the Kingdom? 

So, if you are saved, sure, you ARE saved BUT when our WORK is tried by fire to ensure purity and purpose, motive, and measure, and the Lord gives crowns and rewards and treasures in heaven, you will come up lacking and the saddest part is the difference made in the difference that SHOULD have and COULD have been made in someone else’s life will have been left undone on your shift.

The WORK he asks is quite simple, Love Him, spread His love, go to His house, worship Him, Keep His commandments, and Honor Him in your life and in advice you give others, do as He asks when He prompts you in heart, help someone else to carry their burdens, show mercy and be kind. And HE IS NOT ASKING MUCH!

And one thing you DO not want to do is EVER let Him catch you sleeping on the job, you may just sleep your way right through a God-given opportunity to impact this world while we still barely have enough light left to work by.

If you doubt any of these things pray, read your Bible, and try something so simple as watching the news. It is here people, nothing is changing it and maybe those who preach against preaching warnings really believe that they can just get everyone saved and bypass the judgments.. well, could be true, those saved and raptured WILL be spared many things, BUT what if those who did just simply omit these thoughts, these verses, find themselves on that day, NOT  accounted worthy and NOT escaping these things and left here to do a job that should have been done right the first time!

Love and peace, don’t kill the messenger. My ministry started with this thought, my very first post PLEASE WAKE UP !!!   on a church site that God had blessed me to write for, it was November 2013 and I was so scared that everyone would hate me, but now it is not fear of hate, it is anger, every time I see those who are hurt, wounded, and know that things could change, IF we would change.

God said if we “would humble ourselves” but see that is still the problem, it is all about us, when it should be about HIM, the Kingdom, and the work that needs done.

It is so sad that so many are still sleeping on the job, but I have come to believe that maybe, as we know great revival comes during great persecution, that maybe it is going to take quite a wake up call… please don’t wait too late.

And if you are working, VOLUNTEER with Him for more work! Offer to do the jobs others won’t and He will bless you for going that second mile when your brother has only asked you to go one! BTW, HAPPY LABOR DAY!

Φλογιζω Σαλπιζω NBJ 2017 

Added “new” music for this year. Love this song!

” Untitled &Unbiased “

“Withhold not good from them to whom it is due, when it is in thine power to do it.” Proverbs 3:27

We tend to think of this in terms of financial help and “works” but have you ever thought about it as in spiritual help? Helping one another through their trials, sorrows, and troubles?

Helping them with the ministries and helping them stand steadfast in the calling of the Lord on their life? Stretching out a hand if they are about to slip, or helping pull them back up after they’ve almost tumbled over a spiritual cliff?

It seems the struggles are so much tougher, the sickness and diseases that have hit those of the kingdom with an absolute vengeance are taking their toll and so many.. oh so many are fighting every moment just to hang on.

Maybe everyone is at a loss as to what to do for another… fear of their help or advice would be rejected.. or truly just not knowing.

But if you know those who are struggling and you want to do something, the Bible has our answers and this is how it goes, as the early church was encouraged through the words of their fellow servants, shouldn’t we use this as our example and encourage one another?

Colossians 1:2-12: “To the saints and faithful brethren in Christ which are at Colosse; Grace be unto you, and peace, from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ.

We give thanks to God and the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, PRAYING ALWAYS FOR YOU. 

SINCE we heard of your faith in Christ Jesus, and of the love which ye have to all the saints, For the hope which is laid up for you in heaven, whereof ye heard before in the word of the truth of the gospel;

Which is come unto you, as it is in all the world; and bringeth forth fruit, as it doth also in you, since the day you heard it, and KNEW the grace of God in truth.

As ye also learned of Epaphras our dear fellowservant, who is for you a faithful minister of Christ. Who also declared to us your love in the Spirit. For this cause we also, SINCE the day we heard it, DO NOT CEASE TO PRAY FOR YOU, and to DESIRE THAT YE MIGHT BE FILLED WITH THE KNOWLEDGE OF HIS WILL IN ALL WISDOM AND SPIRITUAL UNDERSTANDING; THAT YE MIGHT WALK WORTHY OF THE LORD UNTO ALL PLEASING, BEING FRUITFUL IN EVERY GOOD WORK, AND INCREASING IN THE KNOWLEDGE OF GOD;

STRENGHTENED WITH ALL MIGHT, ACCORDING TO HIS GLORIOUS POWER, UNTO ALL PATIENCE AND LONGSUFFERING WITH JOYFULLNESS; Giving thanks unto the Father, which hath made us meet (qualified us) to be partakers of the inheritance of the saints in light.”

God has had this on my heart so much lately.. we HAVE to be workers together, we may NOT all have the same beliefs, the same doctrinal system but as it is written when “one hurts we ALL hurt”  and we all need to encourage others along the way and sometimes that means putting down our own personal comfort shields and reaching out to others who may or may not like us or approve of us but if they may just NEED something we can offer, it is still our responsibility to reach out, whether they accept it us or even if they tell us to get “out of their face”, as long as we have tried, we have fulfilled what is required of us.

I had to put my “money where my mouth is” awhile back.. I was visiting a revival and there is an older couple, awesome sweet people, and I have had a lot of personal hurt due to #1. I am female. #2. I am female in a certain “neck of the world” that hasn’t caught up as much as they think they have, with the biased gender based thinking of 1802 and even when we try not to let words and attitudes hinder us.. sometimes they still get lodged in the back of our minds and lie in wait.. until the situation arises that they can remind us that because we are not the right sex, color, or denomination that our PRAYERS are not welcome.

Anyway I was behind this couple and the more I sat there the more it was on my heart to pray for him and I know they have a different background and I just kept hearing that doubt.. “men pray for men.. women pray for women”.. and I just kept wrestling inside of myself and I finally determined that if it was God’s will, it would be fine because I WAS NOT going to go home and spend the rest of my life knowing that I was supposed to pray for him and had refused to even obey what was on heart for FEAR of rejection.

Had they known my calling they may have looked at me not quite so friendly and that is what hit me… we are who we are in God and others are who they are in God.. we don’t always have to make a point of it and can be the body as one. So it hit me to ask his wife first and then we both asked him if it would be okay to pray for him and it all worked out well.

I think this is really how the enemy has divided and separated the churches and flocks, and as long as we ourselves, separate ourselves we will only stay stagnant and will never fulfill the true divine plan God has for our lives and for others.

For the record, MOST believers don’t have the segregated attitudes, and I have a great church family now, but once it has been put in our thinking.. it is there until we overcome it through God and His word.. which says we ought to obey HIM rather than man.

So in our verses we have just that.. believers ENCOURAGING other believers and PRAYING for them and PRAYING for their ministries and that God would BLESS them in their walk with him.

They SINCERELY wanted the new Christians to SUCCEED in the Lord and be filled with joy. They weren’t taking pot shots at the them because they thought they were ‘different”.

They based their entire dealings with them on the facts that they WERE God’s children also and that they WERE filled with His love. I wonder how often we really look at each other this way?

They DID NOT withhold what was good… as it was their inheritance just as much as it belonged to Paul and Timothy and it is high time we all take heart of that.. we will work as a team or our work will profit nothing at all. If you can help someone.. help them.

Φλογίζω Σαλπιζω  NBJ 2017

Am I too late?

Most have experienced the pain of waiting too late. Too late in making a decision and living with that regret for years or sometimes life. Being late to an event or the fear that maybe you have already arrived too late and lost out on something you had long looked forward to, or feel that if you could only go back and change this or do that, everything would be different.

I feel like this goes on in the kingdom pretty often, people feel like they have waited too long in moving out into their calling, or they were hurt and rejected once they did step out, I promise you that is just part of the deal, you step out for the Lord you’re gonna be hurt AND rejected but take it for the compliment that it is! The enemy is NOT going to waste his time (because he knows it is short) fighting people for fun, he fights what he knows is a threat.

So they feel like they maybe they were mistaken about even being called, (another trick from the enemy) they feel they can’t “go back” to “that” church or “those” people because there is just “too much water under the bridge.”

Have you ever thought of it this way, maybe the WATER under that bridge is exactly what the enemy is trying to keep you out of! Maybe you think you missed your calling, waited too long, and too much time has passes, too many struggles have ensued… Got some good news on that story, what if you discovered one day that it was ALL part of the plan for your life to get you EXACTLY where you need to be spiritually in order to go EXACTLY where God wants to take you?

We’ve got two situations going here so we will hit the both, It is NEVER too late! Until you are dead and in the ground then it is too late to pursue the call of God on your life no matter if it was given fifty years ago because: “For the gifts and calling of God are without repentance (ARE IRREVOCABLE).” Romans 11:29

Which means God is NEVER going to say, “Oh sorry, I really did not mean to give you that, let me just take that back.” NO it means He has given them for ever and ever.

And for whatever reason the have been unused I want you to be encouraged, get back up, get back on that boat, do not care who likes you, who doesn’t and do the will of your Father because it is Him that we answer to and sometimes, we are required to swallow our pride for the kingdom because pride does not belong in the kingdom and God ALWAYS deals with those who come against you and your calling, but if you hide it and refuse to use it, what reason would he have to exonerate you from your enemies, and prove them wrong?

Now to prove it is not too late, remember in Revelation when Jesus is warning and encouraging the churches as to what he expects of them, He is speaking to the church of Ephesus, who left their first love, I just want to use part of this verse, because these people WERE saved, their WERE known to Him, “Remember therefore from whence (where) thou art fallen, and repent, and DO THY FIRST WORKS; Revelation 2;5 (1)

So He is telling them DO your FIRST works. I want to get this out-of-the-way, I know there could be the argument against this, because of the verse “called in one hope of your calling” but if you do not accept your ONE hope on this earth to do your job, and use your calling, you sure aren’t going to need it in heaven or New Jerusalem because everyone there will already be saved.

So if you are reading this, rest assured it is NOT too late! I do want to warn you of a common snare with this, once “people” find out you are called, many of them can not wait to give advice and tell you what you should do” it is YOUR job from the Lord, HE will put in your heart or give to you by prophecy what you should do. Don’t need it please don’t listen to it unless you want to ask your Pastor, or prayer partner their thoughts on the best way to go about something, but please don’t let anyone influence you in your work for God, He calls us all differently.

Situation two, we’ll call, “You are growing, growing, growing” Think about David, do you realize that David was anointed THREE times, anointed means to be separated for a specific purpose, the first time He was only about fifteen years old, and this was done privately, only in the presence of his family,

1 Samuel 16:13:” Then Samuel took the horn of oil, and anointed him in the midst of his brethren; and the spirit of the Lord came upon David from that day FORWARD…….”

From this point on, the spirit of God was with him, and even though he had ALREADY been anointed to be King, the time was not yet, and when he was sent to Saul, it was NOT as his replacement but as his harpist!

His next task would be to fight the mighty giant Goliath and I don’t even think David was even thinking about his future or the job he was already in training for, when he ran AT Goliath it was in confidence of the Lord, that no one was going to threaten and enslave the people of the Living God, and at NO point did he tell Goliath “I come to you as the future King” He told him that he came in “NAME of the Lord of hosts, the God of the armies of Israel”.

He then went on to endure Saul’s insane jealously, hiding and fearing for his life, battling bloody battle upon battle, growing and growing into who he had been created to be.

He is anointed a second time, 2 Samuel 2:4,”And the men of Judah came, and there they anointed David king over the house of Judah….” this time is publicly with his countrymen.

And on he goes… growing and growing, battling and battling, “friend” and foe, learning to deal with situations and all the qualities he would NEED, imperative to his success and survival. He has been anointed privately, publicly, and now he will be anointed and accepted by the elders as King over all of Israel.

“So all the elders of Israel came to the king, to Hebron; and king David made a league with them in Hebron before the Lord; and they anointed David king over Israel. David was thirty years old when he began to reign, and he reigned forty years.” 2 Samuel 5;3,4

The fulfillment of that promise unfolded over the period of his life that he was fourteen, fifteen years old until he was thirty, and even NOW part of the divine purpose for the throne of David is STILL unfolding and will be until the return of Christ!

How much do you think he matured and grew and learned and developed over those fifteen odd years? What if he had given up half way through and decided to “rethink” what had been told to him at that private anointing?

David was successful in that long journey because he never lost focus of the big picture, and allowed himself to be exactly what Go wanted, a vessel and David knew that no army, no power, nothing of this earth could defeat God or stop His divine will for Israel and this is what keep David going… and going.. it was NEVER easy and I am sure he experienced many moments of absolute sorrow during those dark times but he always held on and we must also!

Do not give up on your calling! I love the story of Nehemiah and it has been encouragement many times for me personally, I actually have it written and taped in the front of my Bible, along with many other verses, we NEED this encouragement.

This took place  as Nehemiah set about to rebuild the wall and the enemies came forth to STOP THE WORK and I love this verse, Nehemiah 6:9; “ For they ALL made us AFRAID, saying, their hands SHALL BE WEAKENED FROM (because of) the work, that it not be done. NOW THEREFORE, O GOD, STRENGHTEN MY HANDS.”

This is a great verse to remember when “people” are telling you that “it” is impossible to accomplish what GOD SAID you could and trying to discourage you with the thought that the work is too hard and you can not possibly finish it.

Maybe what you think is a little too late could actually be right on time,”Now a certain man was sick, named Lazarus, of Bethany, the town of Mary and her sister Martha. (It was that Mary which anointed the Lord with ointment and wiped his feet with her hair, whose brother Lazarus was sick.) Therefore his sisters sent unto him, saying, Lord, behold, he whom thou lovest is sick. When Jesus heard that, he said, This sickness is NOT unto death, BUT FOR THE GLORY OF GOD, that the Son of God might be glorified thereby.

Now Jesus loved Martha, and her sister, and Lazarus. When he heard therefore that he was sick, HE ABODE (stayed) TWO DAYS STILL IN THE SAME PLACE WHERE HE WAS. Then after that saith he to his disciples, Let us go into Judea again.

His disciples say unto him, Master, the Jews of late sought to stone thee; and goest thou hither again? ( why are you going back)  Jesus answered, Are there not twelve hours in a day? If any man walk in the day, he stumbleth not, because he seeth the light of this world. But if a man walk in the night, he stumbleth, because there is no light in him.

These things said he; and afterward he saith unto them, Our friend Lazarus sleepeth; But I go, that I may awake him out of sleep.

Then said his disciples, Lord, if he sleep, he shall do well. Howbeit Jesus spake of his death; but they thought he had spoken of taking rest in sleep.

Then said Jesus unto them, plainly, LAZARUS IS DEAD. And I am glad for your sakes that I was not there, TO THE INTENT THAT YOU MIGHT BELIEVE;……John 11:1-15  most know the rest of the story.. the sisters go on to tell Him, if He had only been there, their brother would still be alive.

We often think about our pain in what we go through, but it was NOT easy for Jesus to allow them to go through this sorrow and everyone is crying and now HE IS crying also, and I ALWAYS have to point this out because it just tells you WHO HE IS, He KNEW that in matter of moments Lazarus would be very much alive, it just broke His heart seeing them hurt, it does break His heart to see His children cry, NEVER doubt that.

“Jesus said, Take ye away the stone, Martha, the sister of him that was dead, saith unto him, Lord, by this time he stinketh; for HE HATH BEEN DEAD FOUR DAYS. Jesus saith unto her, Said I not unto thee, IF THOU WOULDEST BELIEVE, THOU SHOULDEST SEE THE GLORY OF GOD?” John 11:39,40

As we know from the verses, He LOVED them, but Lazarus was allowed to die so the GLORY would be revealed. But it was not the END of Lazarus’s  story and EVEN four days dead was still not too late!  Just as He said, it was that the GLORY OF GOD WOULD BE REVEALED AND THAT THEY WOULD BELEIVE!

It may look dead, doesn’t mean it is dead! May just not be as late as you think it is after all! So if you find yourself asking.. “Am I too late?”, have faith.. it all may just be right on time!

Φλογίζω Σαλπιζω NBJ 2016

 

 

 

 

“How do I love thee?”

“Hear, O Israel; The Lord our God is one Lord; And thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thine heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy might. And these words,which I command thee this day, shall be in thine heart.” Deuteronomy 6:4-6

Old school groove, “How do I love thee? Let me count the ways” that one has been around for ages! But it is  wonderful question, once Jesus gives us those new hearts and leads us in His paths, we are met with that question, once the true realization of His presence and love is known to you, as He said, He will give you a heart to KNOW him, then we are faced with the humanly overwhelming question of how do you relay your love back to the God of the universe, who created heaven and earth , and who can hold time, space, and eternity in the palm of His hand and if He wanted, He could speak one word and completely destroy every single thing that now exists?

Obviously, as mere mortals, it would seem that we have nothing, nothing to offer as a token of our love in return, our love to Him for creating us, caring for us, and most of all dying on a cross for us so that we could be saved, and never giving up on us.

So how do we love Him and what exactly is it that He wants? Well, we are created in His image and He wants the same thing we want from Him, He wants our love and our heart, and He does not want a little portion of our hearts, you know a spot that remains empty while the main space is taken by other people, other things that we cling too while He gets whatever love is left. He will not go for that, not now, not ever.

No He wants ALL our heart or none of our heart, that is why he said to seek Him with our WHOLE heart. he wants a real relationship and not to be a God in the distance in our lives, He wants fellowship with us and this has become so messed up in the world thinking. He is love BUT He also tells us if we love Him, we WILL keep His commandments and when you think about it, there is nothing on that list that is unreasonable and every single command He has ever handed down is FOR OUR GOOD.

So we have to get into that thinking that He IS love and He IS our friend but we are also required by that love to do as He asks. Our world has major rebellion problems on this one, it is taught as well He loves us, we can do what makes us happy, No, that is NOT loving Him, that is trying to compare His goodness toward us with some sort of fairy godfather who grants your every whim. And that is in no way loving Him or respecting Him, that is loving our flesh and being so arrogant as to think our DESIRES are of a higher value than His Holiness, and that kinda thinking will get a person a quick trip to the grave.

“But the hour cometh, and now IS, when true worshippers shall worship the Father in spirit and in truth; for the Father seeketh such to worship him. GOD IS A SPIRIT: and they that worship him must worship him in SPIRIT AND IN TRUTH.” John 4:23,24

So we know with Jesus arrival on earth, all things were changed and no longer were prayers and sacrifice made by a priest needed and all who truly believe could be allowed entry into the Holy of Holies through his presence with the gift of the Holy Ghost.

This is where we must worship in TRUTH, truth to who He is, truth of His commands, truth of His word, and keeping our lives and actions subjected into and under that TRUTH. We worship Him in Spirit, in His presence  in the “places” of salvation:

“But thou shalt call thy walls Salvation, and thy gates Praise” Isaiah 60:18(a)

Believers are surrounded by those walls of salvation in your worship time and praise is the gate by which we enter and there you worship in fellowship, love, and adoration and there you know Him and receive joy, peace, and assurance and rest from your troubles. 

So here is a scriptural checklist:

Deuteronomy 10:12 : “And now Israel, what doth the Lord thy God require of thee? But (only) to fear the Lord thy God, to walk in all his ways, and to love him, and to serve the Lord thy God WITH ALL THY HEART and ALL THY SOUL.” 

Deuteronomy 11:13-14:  “And it shall come to pass, if ye shall hearken diligently unto my commandments which I command you this day, to love the Lord your God, and to serve him with all your heart and with all your soul, That I will give you the rain of your land in his due season, and the first rain and the latter rain, that thou mayest gather  in thy corn, thy wine, and thine oil.”

That is His promises to us of all good things, and the word of God, the bread of life, his blessings, His anointing. So now we answer the question.. “My Dear Lord HOW do I love thee?  We enter into your presence with thanksgiving and praise, and in the safety of your pavilion surrounded by those walls of your salvation we will allow ourselves to be taught, loved, and led!

This is the how you count the ways! Seek Him, Love Him, Honor Him, and get to know Him, and let His blessings and His mercy transform you!

Φλογίζω Σαλπιζω NBJ 2016

Revisited 02/07/2020 

 

“Vexing Vineyard Variances”

“Now will I sing to my well beloved a song touching (concerning) his vineyard, My beloved has a vineyard in a very fruitful hill: And he fenced it, and gathered the stones thereof, and planted it with the choicest vine, and built a tower in the midst of it, and made a winepress therein: and he looked that it should bring forth grapes and it brought forth wild grapes. 

And now, O inhabitants of Jerusalem, and men of Judah, judge, I pray (ask) you, betwixt (between) me and my vineyard. WHAT COULD HAVE BEEN MORE DONE TO MY VINEYARD? THAT I HAVE NOT DONE IN IT? wherefore, when I looked that is should bring forth grapes, brought it forth wild grapes? ISAIAH 5:1-4

As God describes the planting of his vineyard, he chose a spot with rich, fertile soil, He cleared out all the weeds, briers, and all that could hinder and choke the new plantings.

He then removed all the rocks and debris that could hold back the tender shoots and He then planted the absolute best of vine, He himself being the tower in the midst of it. Watching and protecting the young vines, as they could grow without disturbance as beasts would try to trample and destroy them.

The winepress ready and waiting the harvest of grapes that was to come and produce magnificent. new wine, the Father’s own personal signature selection. But instead of producing the grapes needed for this particular vintage, wild, bitter, strong, unpleasant, nasty grapes grew instead. He tells us to judge this matter for ourselves…  Is the problem with the planting or is it a problem with the vineyard itself?

HE THEN ASKS THE QUESTION…that should terrify us all, What more could MORE COULD HAVE BEEN DONE THAT HE HAS NOT ALREADY DONE?

Kinda what is going on with the “falling away” we are now under, like the breaks and wounds body of Christ that are allowed to continue without remedy and without even caring to heal them, and churches of the modern-day that are seemingly unaware that when one member hurts, we ALL hurt, and continue to allow the Gospel to be falsely advertised and outright sold and not only do they not speak out against these things, they often help promote the very ones who perpetrate these “crimes” committed against the cause, verse 7:…. and he looked for judgement (justice), but beheld oppression; for righteousness but beheld a cry.”

To not speak out on behalf of the truth, makes us all guilty of these things, and too easily we forget that we,  ALL the members,ALL the churches, ARE ALL ONE BODY and “in that day His name shall be one” and we’d better start getting in that ONE mindset here or we just not make it to even be there.

What more could He do for us? And as we know, and I will not get repetitive, even though I really want to.. but we all know the major problems of today. There is often not enough love, caring, and general goodwill  between members of the vine, which cause essential growth nutrients to be siphoned away from the small grapes and over ripening the mature ones and too much money-grubbing, self promoting, ulterior motive impeding the vine’s overall general growth.

He will absolutely not lose His harvest because of a bunch of bad grapes! I really believe  major change is coming soon and the vineyard will be pruned, all the vines, as He says, that do not produce fruits will be cut away and all the bad grapes, all those who have held the positions and the ministry that have further alienated people AWAY from the Gospel through their false representations of the heart of Christ, will allowed to fall to the ground, just as when a grape withers and rots away on the vine, finally falling useless to the ground.

Whatever places they held will be given to the “new grapes” that are growing up into the vine as we speak, and that new wine will be wine for all, not just a select few and they will have a heart for God and for His people, they will see to the widows, and the fatherless, and they will care for those who are outcast, sick, and spiritually wounded.

They will be the leaders and ministers for the church and know that they ARE for the church, and not fall for the power tripping trap that the CHURCH IS FOR THEM. They will go forth in faith knowing that God will supply all their needs in unfolding ministries and that He is quite capable of furnishing the house and they will be those who “instead of thy fathers shall be thy children”… these will be the true fruits of God’s vineyard.

Time to check what’s growing and do some pruning and purging, better to tend what we can than to be cut down, cast out, and burned up, never, ever to grow again.

When we know it is ABOUT HIM and not us!

Φλογίζω Σαλπιζω  NBJ 2016

New Direction, >>>>>>> 2017

Hard to believe another year has come, starting off with the freshness of a new fallen snow and gently waving into a cool summer breeze, Autumns splendor having been replaced by a multitude of beautiful twinkling lights, and will be gone with the blasts of horns and whirls of confetti, as 2017 will be ushered in.

How time flies so quickly is beyond me, but I do believe the “shortened” days of the Bible are being fulfilled. In a blink of an eye, the days, and months have passed by and we once again evaluate ourselves, what we have accomplished, and what we have most importantly learned.

Many, many have been through tough times, not only this past year but the years preceding, faith has been tested and endurance has been stretched but I believe hope is on the horizon, chains will be broken,  doors will be opened, damages will be repaired and things can be made new IF we forsake our OWN paths and our OWN ways and be willing to go in a NEW direction, in courage, boldness, not fearing the unknown and more importantly not fearing failure of rejection by others.

“For I know the thoughts that I think toward you, saith the Lord, thoughts of PEACE, and NOT of evil (calamity), to GIVE YOU AN EXPECTED END ( a FUTURE and a HOPE).

Then shall ye call upon me, and ye shall go and pray unto me and I will hearken unto you. And ye shall seek me, and find me, when ye search for me with all your heart.” JEREMIAH 29:11-13

I think sometimes, even though it is not our intention, we kinda run off in our own path, like little lambs, headed for what we are going after, when the Shepherd is standing there like, “Where are you going?” and being the lambs we are, we just baa-baa and take off running even faster  after what has caught our eye and lured us into believing that the grass may be greener over there, running until He comes to our rescue and pulls us from the edge of the cliff at the moment we are almost ready to topple over it.

Some cliffs are man-made and those are the worst, you know the areas that we voluntarily dwell in, in the forms of bad relationships and trying to shoulder burdens that were never ours to carry, and that heavy burden you have chosen to put on your own back will certainly either knock you down the hill or roll you over your own cliff, whichever comes first.

There really are times in life that we are required to JUST LET situations and relationships GO! Say Adios, Asta LA vista, Good-bye and if you have too, hum a little chorus of “Na-Na, Na-Na, hey-hey, good-bye”!

You know when your joy has been sucked out and misery is at your door,  you feel trapped and overwhelmed,  then THIS IS NOT THE PATH OF THE LORD  and when you feel unable to worship the Lord as openly as you wish, this lets you know that this ground is toxic and nothing you attempt to plant there will grow, and this field is toxic and nothing you attempt to harvest will prosper in these polluted  fields.

Trouble is, we find ourselves in these fields begging the Lord to change things or move obstacles, when actually this was NEVER the place you were supposed to be!

So think about that for 2017, where have you been, what have accomplished, what ratio are you reading negative to positive in your life goals and your relationship to God and ministry in the Kingdom.

If you’re not happy with it or feel rather lacking, this is the opportunity dead center of the road and do a u turn back to the Shepherd, who will be waiting there to lead you on the RIGHT path.  As He said, when we SEEK HIM, with ALL our hearts, we WILL find Him  and THEN our prayers will be answered. Let’s us know real fast that we can “think” we are committed and yet still being seeking and serving half-heartedly with that other half dedicated to something that was never ours.

“My son forget not my law; but let thine hearts keep my commandments: For length of days, and long life, and peace, shall they add to thee.

Let not mercy and truth forsake thee; bind them about thy neck; write them upon the table of thine heart: So shalt thou find FAVOUR and good understanding (high esteem) in the sight of God and man.

TRUST in the Lord with all thine heart; lean NOT unto thine OWN understanding. In ALL thy ways acknowledge him, and he SHALL DIRECT THY PATHS.

Be not wise in thine own eyes, fear the Lord, and depart from evil. IT shall be health to thy navel (body) and marrow (strength, refreshment) to thy bones.

Honour the Lord with thy substance (possessions), and with the firstfruits of all thine increase. So shall thy barns be filled with plenty, and thy presses shall BURST OUT WITH NEW WINE.” PROVERBS 3:1-10

We are to trade that heavy yoke around our neck for mercy and truth to carry, as Jesus said His yoke is light, again we are warned to not be wise in our own thoughts, sometime we feel that we should do this or that and that something IS our obligation, when God actually wants us away from that problem.

That is why is so important to compare natural to natural, spiritual to spiritual and if God has given you a great life but yet you are lacking peace because of a toxic relationship, then you know, God is not making you stay there and that is when letting go comes in, He will not make you but don’t be shocked if he doesn’t sway things to your liking.

He will save anyone who asks, BUT they have to want to be saved and that is often the point we miss and we are not called to be emotional martyrs or to perform clean up and deliverance for people when only GOD ALONE CAN PERFORM THESE TASKS.

So try changing directions this new year, I think we all could always use a little “new wine” and let God Bless you, lead you, and guide you, ALL of you, in HIS paths!

 

As the song asks, “Should auld acquaintance be forgot?” YES! YES! “Remember ye NOT the former things (what is in the past), NOR CONSIDER the things of old. {Don’t bank on experience as a test of thinking you already know what you don’t REALLY know}

Behold, I will do a NEW thing; now it shall spring forth; SHALL YE NOT KNOW IT? I will even make a WAY IN THE WILDERNESS, and RIVERS in the desert.” ISAIAH 43:18.19

To borrow another familiar term, for 2017 lets all live up to the advice of “out with the old and in with the new” and we will be made new too!

Here’s wishing you a beautiful New Year with new direction, new hope, newness of joy, newness of life, new peace, new love, and an overwhelming newness and refreshment of His spirit on your life.

 

Φλογίζω Σαλπιζω NBJ 2016

 

The voice of Simon

“And one of the Pharisee desired (asked) him that he would eat with him. And he went into the Pharisees house, and set down to meat (dinner). And behold, a woman a woman in the city, which was a sinner, when she knew Jesus sat at meat in the Pharisees house, brought an alabaster box (jar) of ointment. And stood at his feet, behind him weeping, and began to wash his feet with her tears, and did wipe them away with the hairs of her head, and kissed his feet, and anointed them with the ointment (oil).

Now when the Pharisee which had bidden him saw it, he spake WITHIN himself, saying This man, IF he were a prophet, would have known who and what manner of woman THIS IS that toucheth  him; For SHE IS A SINNER.

And JESUS answering said unto him, Simon, I have somewhat to say unto thee, and he said, Master (Teacher) say on. There was a certain creditor which had two debtors: the one owed him five hundred pence, and the other fifty. And when they had nothing to pay, he frankly forgave them both, Tell me therefore, which will love him most?

Simon answered  and said, I suppose that he, to whom he forgave most, and he said unto him, Thou hast rightly judged. And he turned to the woman, and said unto Simon, Seest thou this woman? I entered into thine house, thou gavest me no water for my feet: but she hath washed my feet with her tears, and wiped them with the hairs of her head. Thou gavest me no kiss: but this woman hath not ceased to kiss my feet. My head with oil thou didst not anoint: but this woman hath anointed my feet with ointment.

Wherefore I say unto thee, Her sins, which are many, are forgiven: for she loved much; but to whom little is forgiven, THE SAME LOVETH LITTLE.” LUKE 7:36-47

The courage it took for Mary to walk into that room, she knew exactly what they all thought and Pharisees, oh what we could say about Simon, what if Jesus had taken him to school and told him every single sin he had committed? But Jesus does not work that way, but Pharisees do.

He really nailed them when he referred to them as white washed tombs FULL of dead men’s bones, they will gag at a gnat and SWALLOW a camel. These are they who openly thank God that they are “not like that tax collector” over there.

These are they who claim they know Him and their smug religious superiority allows them to look down on and constantly backbite and trash talk others, because after all how could HE SAVE such sinners as they know people to have been or be?

They are “raging waves foaming out of their OWN SHAME” and whether you are a new Christian or have been on the frontlines for the Lord for a while, you have, or will, or are experiencing the voice of Simon.

Male or female, religious snobbery and arrogance knows no gender or social status and if they can’t see to their standards what the Lord has done in you, then obviously IN THEIR OPINION, it has not been done, AND THEY WANT TO MAKE BLOODY SURE THAT YOU KNOW THAT AND THAT YOU ARE NEVER UNDER THE IMPRESSION THAT YOU WILL EVER OUT RUN YOUR PAST!

That is what Simon wanted and his voice must be silenced in all of our ears, because when you know Jesus, you KNOW His voice! “But he that entereth in by the door IS the shepherd of the sheep. To him the porter openeth; and the sheep hear his voice; and he CALLETH HIS OWN SHEEP BY NAME, AND HE LEADETH THEM OUT.

And when he putteth forth his own sheep, he goeth before them, and the sheep follow him; for THEY KNOW HIS VOICE. And A STRANGER THEY WILL NOT FOLLOW, BUT WILL FLEE FROM HIM; FOR THEY KNOW NOT THE VOICE OF THE STRANGER.” JOHN 10:2-5

Jesus is giving us comfort that yes, others voices may call, other voices will try to persuade us to follow, but WE know HIS voice, His voice is Gentle, encouraging, and always, always leading us AWAY from our past. The voices of the strangers want to lead you back into a life of lies, and bondage, a life of misery, and hopelessness, just like Simon, he didn’t care if Mary was saved, as far as he cared she could split hell wide open, in HIS EYES he was pure as fallen snow and her.. well, not so much. 

Now with the courage it took her to seek Jesus WHERE he may be found, cry at His feet with an audience of haters staring her down, she had it rough, and if you want to be saved and this is what it is going to require, openly acknowledging and worshipping the Lord in an atmosphere of contempt, may I encourage you to do it!

Just as He shut Simon up, He will shut up those who discourage you. Sometimes the Pharisees will try to hunt us down in on our own turf, barge their way into your personal worship space with the Lord, as the devil is the “accuser of the brethren, (God’s children) and ACCUSES them night and day before the Lord”, it is so imperative to not let it get to you, go right on with the Lord and that puts the ball in HIS court and I guarantee you, when He gets through with them it will be as when the Egyptian’s were GLAD to see the Hebrews go because the plagues of God and His hand had been so strong against them.

We can not change any situation but God will, IF we stay out of it, and do not try to fix it ourselves or speak on our own behalf, if you notice with that, Mary never said a word, not one word, JESUS spoke on her behalf, HE IS our lawgiver, our judge, our refuge, and our strength and HE WILL DEFEND HIS CHOSEN.

And I know that can be hard when your being hassled and your flesh really wants to cut loose, go completely off, and all kinds of crazy on the “Simons”, but once we have made that mistake, we have extracted our own vengeance, when we should have chosen God’s because His vengeance is perfection.

We’ve covered them there, and here, but what about when you are desperately seeking God and trying to find your way? Most dangerous place of all and a hotbed of “Simons” the place that after salvation, we can get a little lax in “opening up” to Him and His will, and waiting too long to answer “His call” growing cold and lukewarm, realizing the mistake, dying to yourself, and start your “search”.

” I rose up to open to my beloved; and my hands dropped (dripped) with myrrh, and my fingers with sweet smelling myrrh, upon the handles of the lock. I opened up to my beloved; but he had withdrawn himself, and was gone; my soul failed when he spake (heart went out in longing); I sought for him; but I could not find him; I called him, but he gave me no answer.

The watchmen that went about the city found me, and they smote (struck) me, and they WOUNDED me; the keepers of the walls TOOK AWAY my veil from me.” SONG OF SOLOMON 4:5-7

Now that is some damage, the kind of damages, “Simons” can cause, if you listen to them and do not stay close to God and KNOW who you are in Him, no matter how hard they try to convince you otherwise, even while taking “your veil”, like Simon tried, by arguing who you are or were. Little harder to bounce back from that, but it this story, she bounces back with a new determination to show the world His love.

So now we know what we don’t want to listen too, please let me give you a couple of sharp swords of the word to help in your battle:

#1. HIS VOICE, HIS VOICE, HIS VOICE! “FEAR NOT; for thou shalt NOT be ashamed: Neither be thou confounded (disgraced); for thou shalt NOT be put to shame: for thou shalt FORGET the shame of thy youth… ISAIAH 54:4

#2. “In righteousness thou shalt be ESTABLISHED; thou shalt be far from oppression; for thou shalt NOT fear: and from terror; for it shalt NOT come near thee. Behold, THEY shall surely gather together (come against you) but NOT BY ME (God does NOT send them) WHOSOEVER SHALL GATHER AGAINST THEE SHALL FALL FOR THY SAKE. ISAIAH 54:14,15

#3. NO weapon that is formed against thee shall prosper; and EVERY tongue that SHALL RISE AGAINST THEE IN JUDGMENT (bad mouthing you) THOU SHALT CONDEMN. THIS IS THE HERITAGE OF THE SERVANTS OF THE LORD, AND THEIR RIGHTEOUSNESS IS OF ME.” ISAIAH 54:17 

Great comfort because Jesus casts all our sins and transgression into the “sea of forgetfulness” and NEVER remembers them again, and “as far as the east is to the west” those sins are from his mind and that is how far they should be from your mind also. I know days are just days, but with the new year we can consider it the perfect time to tell all the old “Simons” to be forgot and listen NO MORE to their voices.

But challenge ourselves in the new year to listen to the voice of our Shepherd, who will tell you that you ARE new, you ARE clean, and those filthy rags that were your righteousness have now been exchanged for the glorious garment of HIS righteousness which covers you completely in HIs love, His protection, and under the shadow of His mighty wings!

Φλογίζω Σαλπιζω NBJ 2016

If you have been hurt by words and people who just keep trying to remind you of your past, and keep trying to convince you that you have no future, PLEASE, PLEASE listen to this song, I STILL can not hear this song without crying because it has been so perfect for my heart and my walk and many, many trips with the “Simons” that have tried to make me doubt Jesus, but I KNOW Jesus, and I know from “miles and miles away LOVE saw (me)there and stretched out His hand to save (me) across the lonely ocean of (my) tears and he’ll walk upon the waves to save (me) if that’s what it takes” If you’ve been going through this, Please just listen to the voice of Jesus, because no one else died for you and no one else can save you and love you as He does! Simons looking for me can find me at the feet of the only one whose thoughts matter to me.

 

 

“Swimming Practice”

Like most, I have been spending many evenings during this big nasty heat wave checking out the Olympics. Last night an American broke a world record and of course won gold.

What was fascinating is that if you walked in late during the race it would have appeared that she was actually BEHIND the others because she was using a new strategy that gave her a lead. She and her coach had spent time reviewing footage of the style and techniques used by another Olympic great and evidently the extra “studying” paid off quite nicely. An action plan I think we could all benefit from in the kingdom.

2 TIMOTHY 2: 14,16: ” Of these things put them in remembrance, charging them before the Lord that they STRIVE NOT about words to no profit, but to the subverting (ruin) of the hearers. 

STUDY to shew thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth. But shun profane and vain babblings (worthless talk) for they WILL increase unto MORE UNGODLINESS.” 

My new favorite song is “What you want” I posted with my last post, the reason for this is the simple truth of too many leaders and not enough followers in the Kingdom.

Everyone IS a leader, everyone HAS a title, and YET the GIFTS are not flowing, because we can’t choose our titles and our jobs, it has to be WHAT GOD HAS CHOSEN. And often what GOD wants is NOT exactly what we had in mind!

The other problem is that no one wants to complete the course of spiritual “schooling”these ministries require. And I DON’T mean Seminary! And of course there are those who KNOW everything anyway, and they are right and everyone else is wrong. Those I think are quite hopeless.

One who has stepped on my toes time after time leaps to mind, I had made a suggestion, something I knew WAS NOT of my own thinking, because I had been under such an anointing when the thought came, and it took so much courage to make the suggestion AND I have never REGRETTED anything so much in my life.

They absolutely lined me out and even accused me of wanting to do something BECAUSE other churches did it! And I took a bath in spiritual reproach coming off this person and after much prayer, trying to figure out why on earth they got so angry, I KNEW the reason they became so angry was NOT the suggestion. IT WAS because the suggestion CAME FROM ME and they felt SUPERIOR and was actually INSULTED that I would DARE suggest anything to THEM.

And it did create enough static to shut down the work I felt God had me in that place and at that time to do. But God is a good God and this is where “being approved” come into play. Maybe someone has hurt you or discouraged you, or like me, you ALMOST become  convinced that somehow you jumped the gun, when actually sometimes we need to re-evaluate who we truly are “workers together” with in the kingdom.

I think sometimes we view people differently than they really are and God has to let us see, what we do not want to see, so we will move on into the direction HE WANTS. But again God is God and He will never leave us twisting in the wind, if it is of Him, IT WILL COME TO PASS.

It was so funny, close to a YEAR later, I was still receiving page notifications from this particular place, and you can imagine when one popped up that they were having a “special” service incorporating the very thing, I had been spiritually keel-hauled over!  It took every single ounce of restraint I have to not comment on it, to the effect of “Sounds familiar, thought for sure I asked about that… Well good luck with that… but next time you may want to try it when THAT DOOR is open!”

But I didn’t and I don’t know it could have went great but…. People like that, because this one has a way of offending the anointing, and I say that because IT IS NOT MINE, it belongs to God and when people demand things such as gender based laying on of hands, it pretty much sums up to this. If whoever is doing the laying on, IS NOT the one God chooses, well all they are doing is “praying” their own will over that person and without the power of God performing those things, IT IS NOT GOING TO HAPPEN.

But I see a future change in that also because God has a way of teaching people humility and correcting their own biases. I truly believe the day will come when that person needs something major from God and it will not come they way they THINK it should and the will be required to learn the fine art of humility.

But that is where we are running into obstacles, too many people with THEIR agenda, and way too many leaders who still should be learning how to follow. One comes to mind that needs to get themselves right before they play Pied Piper, but since that is the game they are playing… where did those children go in that story again? Oh yeah, right..  the story ended with no one EVER knew where they ended up.

IT is not a game, you can’t just decide that you are this or you are that and jump head first in the pool to drown because you will drown a lot of others with you, when you get into the deep end and find out you really don’t know how to swim as well as you THOUGHT you could, because that lesson was one you bothered not to show up for!

 No one WILL EVER know “everything” we ARE to be workers together and together means just that. one mind one accord working for the good of the kingdom, not a race to see who’s best and who can reach that finish line with the greatest moves.

The words mentioned in our verse, words if they are not seasoned, if they are not tempered by the spirit of God WILL RUIN others. Words spoken without the power of God and the timing of God are just that words and they only cater more and more to worthless, human vanity, which is why we now have so many claiming to be representatives of Christ, who are so far AWAY from the truth that the have deceived THEIR own mind by THEIR OWN words into their own damnation and are committing things that are true abominations to God and yet believe they have punched ticket straight to heaven.

Truly believing within themselves that they can just proclaim and claim every chosen blessing from the book and yet ignore all scripture that provides the BREAD for that sandwich they are attempting to eat. And we know if they are to still be fed with milk THEY WILL choke to death on the meat of God’s true Holy doctrine.

And the problem is ALL the others who follow after them, never questioning, never allowing their conscious to feel conviction that leads to repentance and again we know this leads to having their conscious seared with a hot iron.

How did we ever become so vain and high-minded that we can “choose” our gifts, choose our callings? When God CHOOSES for us! We have no word in these matters. None, read the Bible, read those who tried to argue out of these calls.

Abraham LEARNED to follow God. Moses LEARNED to listen to God and spent real time in His presence, so much time, that his face shined to the point that he had to cover it because it SCARED the Hebrews.  Maybe learning to flow in the gifts and presence of God will cause people to be uncomfortable around you.. maybe that is a hold up, but do you really want to please God or would you rather fit it?

Your never going to fit in under the anointing of God, a friend to the world (and this does also mean candy coat fake Christians) will make you an enemy to God.

 John the Baptist dwelled in the wilderness. Apostle Paul studied THREE years and also participated in the vow of the Nazarite. And we all know Peter’s trails, struggles and most of all his overcoming all these things. Peter was learning, being educated in the disposition required to be an Apostle of Jesus Christ. We ALSO KNOW the end of that story, Peter, in dying to himself, and making the kingdom of heaven HIS Goal became so filled with the power of God that not only were prayer cloths taken from him, to heal diseases and cast out devils BUT that the sick were brought outside his home that EVEN THE SHADOW OF HIM PASSING BY might heal them.

STUDY, study the word, study the history, STUDY an elder, one that you know for certain, lives, breathes and sleeps for the kingdom. We have problems with that also, and we should never follow anyone if we do not know their life, know HOW they live in their own home, outside of a church house. Jesus IS our example, but just as the lady mentioned earlier, there is no harm in learning how an elder has “made” it, how they coped, how they gained strength and use that as part of our training manual.

Never be discouraged,of course, it will come, there will always be those who try to make you give up, and often they are the ones who you really believe will encourage you the most, when I first started training in ministry, my Pastor gave me some excellent advice, he told me that it was NOT “those” out there that we had to worry about, as far as picking apart your every word and saying mean hurtful things, it was those inside the church, and those in the family, they are often the ones who will discourage us the most. I found that to be true.

God places His call upon you and His gifts inside of you, but after that it is up to YOU, to nurture those gifts. Remember when God asked Moses why was he crying to Him, He had ALREADY given Moses what he would be equipped with, it was up to Him to have faith and use that gift. The Anointing does not come easy, nor does it come cheap. You will give up some things, and probably a few people, your desires and your flesh and it will cost you, time, and some trips to that refining furnace, and it will require diligence, and it will require PATIENCE.

ROMANS 12:7: ” Or Ministry, let us WAIT on our ministering…” nothing, nothing is going to happen outside the perfect timing of God, and we can not go off all half cocked and try to rush what can not be rushed. God works in His time and when that time is right, no matter how many have hurt or discouraged you, that time will not be stopped.  The ONLY person who can destroy the call on your life is YOU!

ISAIAH 43:13:” Yea, BEFORE the day was I AM he; and THERE IS NONE THAT CAN DELIVER OUT OF MY HAND: I WILL WORK, AND WHO SHALL LET IT ( who shall REVERSE His work)?

NO ONE, NO ONE overrules the preordained plan of God. They can try but they will only succeed, IF YOU let them. And to pursue the call you may as well learn to fight now, because THERE will never be a time when the fight for that calling will cease. As a soldier you are required to fight UNTIL the Captain calls you off the field, which in this army is when you leave this world.

 REVELATION 3:7:  “And to the angel (messenger) of the church in Philadelphia write; These things saith he that IS holy, he that IS true, HE THAT HATH THE KEY OF DAVID, HE THAT OPENETH, AND NO MAN SHUTTETH; AND SHUTTETH, AND NO MAN OPENETH.”  

 Don’t worry if your technique looks backward to your teammates, Don’t worry if sometimes, it looks like your not even swimming in the right direction, because in due time the Captain will perfect your moves. Just wait for HIS guidance, Keep learning, keep studying, never give in and never give up and never let anyone keep you from that finish line!

Φλογιζω Σαλπιζω NBJ 2016

Is ONCE really ever enough?

“Gazingstock”

1 CORINTHIANS 4:9-13: “For I think that God hath set forth (displayed) us the apostles last, as it were appointed to death; for we are made a spectacle unto the world, and to the angels, and to men. We are fools for Christ’s sake ( the world opinion) but ye are wise in Christ; we ARE weak, but ye are strong; ye are honourable, but we ARE despised.

Even unto the present hour we both hunger, and thirst, and are naked (poorly clothed), and ARE buffeted (beaten) and have no certain dwelling place; and labour, working with our own hands: BEING reviled, we bless; BEING persecuted, we suffer (endure) it. BEING defamed (slandered) we entreat (encourage): we ARE made the filth of this world, and ARE the offscouring of all things unto this day. ”

We often think of the Apostles as almost super human, almost as if, had they needed to, they could have run through stone buildings.

We are half right, considering that they, with the exception of Paul hung out with Jesus and SAW Him ascend into heaven and combined they were FREED by angels, SAW demons cast out and SAW the dead resurrected back to life.

BUT the super part belonged to the LORD the other is just human!
As we read the verse above, nothing about that sounds glamorous, or remotely desirable as a life style and these are the things we often forget.

I truly believe that this is what causes so many “new” Christians to slip and some seasoned ones to misplace their robes and end up wearing a coat made of jade 

For the most part it is preventable.

Once we accept Christ, and especially if we have been given the gift of the Holy Ghost, we have that wonderful newness.

Everything IS brand new, WE ARE New but then life, emotions, and the enemy come and often no one has ever told the “new” person that what they are going through is NORMAL for the course and no one helps them through that maze and they end up lost in it and give up even trying to find their way home.

The second group comes into play, as often having a fight with hell all the way to the altar and sometimes passed the altar and into the water because they have a call on their life.

And once they do make it “in” that fight only intensifies and I really, really wish I could give a “one word will make it all go away” answer right here.

BUT it does not exist.
Once this particular spiritual warfare has been engaged, it can not be disengaged because:
#1. The calling of God on lives is determined before birth and “they do not expire until we do.”
#2. Giving up is not an option, you will lose your salvation, and everything you have ALREADY fought through will have been for nothing.
#3. Outside of the will of God and without His protection, satan will chew you up and spit you out.
#4 Your fall will affect every single person you love and all those whom you were to minister to.
#5 THE most important reason is that JESUS died for you and saved you and He will NEVER let you be tested beyond what you can handle and a servant can not be above His Master, to reign with Christ we must suffer with Christ.
“Think It not strange…” sometimes battles are so fierce and dark that you can not even see daylight but you must remember you war against principalities and powers of the air.

I don’t know how I would have ever made it had God not blessed me with the people he did in my life and ministers that would share their own personal battle stories and some so hard to fathom, that my problems would pale in comparison.

Without the knowledge that these things happened to people whom I knew were Godly and doing their best in their walk, I could have never kept my head above water, I held onto every single word and would remember their stories and how they got through it and that they were still standing and that I serve the same God.

HEBREWS 10:32,33: “But call to remembrance the former days, in which after ye were illuminated (enlightened), ye ENDURED a GREAT FIGHT OF AFFLICTIONS (struggle with sufferings); partly, (in part) whilst ye were made a GAZINGSTOCK (SPECTACLE) BOTH BY REPROACHES AND AFFLICTIONS (tribulations) and partly (in part) whilst YE BECAME COMPANIONS OF THEM THAT WERE SO USED (treated).

What can we say there?

The days after your salvation, such a GREAT FIGHT with sufferings and troubles. You were as one that the world would look at and stare upon, as one in medieval stocks for the entire village to mock and ridicule.
Reproaches of those who laugh at your salvation and the enemy who questions “Where is your God now?”

But it is due in part so that YOU CAN become who you are to become in Christ.

1 PETER 1;4-8,10: “Whereby are given unto us exceeding GREAT and PRECIOUS promises: that by these ye might be partakers of the divine nature, having escaped the corruption that is in the world through lust.

And beside (along with) this, giving ALL DILIGENCE, ADD to your faith virtue, and to virtue knowledge: AND to knowledge temperance ( self-control); AND to temperance patience; AND to patience godliness; AND to godliness brotherly kindness; AND to brotherly kindness CHARITY ( love).
FOR if these thing be in you (are yours) and abound, they make you that YE SHALL NEITHER BE BARREN NOR UNFRUITFUL IN THE KNOWLEDGE OF OUR LORD JESUS CHRIST. Wherefore the rather brethren, GIVE DILIGENCE TO MAKE YOUR CALLING AND ELECTION SURE: FOR IF YOU DO THESE THINGS YE SHALL NEVER FAIL.”

So you have heard it from Paul and you have heard it from Peter, now they are some pretty reliable sources!!!

All these things WILL work to your good and all these things WILL produce every quality needed to be productive in the Kingdom of God.
If you are “new” please stay close and active in a good Bible believing church, read along with them, find ministers that you enjoy hearing and enjoy the word, don’t pressure yourself or let anyone else pressure you, the only opinion of you that should matter is God’s and He is awesome and will teach you all things.

Find a good prayer partner that you can trust, that can pray with you when life comes at you or temptation comes calling and if you fall of the boat, repent and get back on the boat!

And keep trying, IT WILL GET BETTER and IT WILL GET EASIER.
If you are in group two, seek the old paths and surround yourself with prayer warriors and try to spend time with older ones who have been there and done that and they WILL encourage you and give you godly advice that is imperative to stay on track in your calling.

And the best news is this, once you successfully war against an attack of the enemy, he will no more use that same weapon, because it is no longer effective.

Once you make it through a tough battle you will soon find that the battle made you stronger and you will be able to stand against attacks that would have put you out earlier in your ministry.

You will also be better at seeing attacks coming and be prepared more easily, not to say there will never be blind sides, but when it is said and done, you will be glad you stayed the course, because medals are not just given, they must be won.
Φλογιζω NB/2016

! Original post 02/2016.  Still battling blue screen, Please check out this blast from posts past!🐦

 

 

 

 

“CAVES” Part 2 “Cavin’ with Dave”

“He that is our God IS the God of salvation; and unto God the Lord belong the issues (escapes) from death.” Psalm68:20

As the Lord asked Elijah what he was doing, and Elijah answered, the Lord called him out of the cave, where He then showed a magnificent display of His power, I believe to try to snap Elijah out of it with the remembrance of WHO was truly on his side. He spoke to Elijah in a quite soft voice asking him again (1 Kings 19:13) ” What are you doing here?” Elijah again word for word gave him his reason and it is so clear the main reason he became discouraged was the solitude. He became so distraught and discouraged that he could no longer see the majesty, the power that would slay his enemy.

He KNEW  it he just lost his ability to continue the fight. You will notice with these passages that God asked TWICE and after that he gave Elijah instruction for turning over his assignment to Elisha. God will not override our wills, it was not his idea for Elijah’s work to come to this end and He showed extreme mercy in how He dealt with him.

This can be proven through the account of Jonah, who just bucked on God and decided he just was not doing what God had commanded him to do and after he found himself in the belly of as he put it “hell”. He found it to be in his best interest to do as he had been asked and even by the end of the book he was still all mad at God and I have never found anything else on what finally became of him.

So you can see there was a complete difference in what was going on in these guys by the difference of how God dealt with them.  As we all know Elijah did not die, he was taken and in my personal opinion, just a little rest, a little reprieve until time to come back to this earth as one of the two witnesses described in Revelation. His work has not been completed. It does prove mercy toward our messed up worn out human minds and half broken spirits. and that we can make OWN ON DECISION to “die” in the cave.

David also did some caving, like Elijah he felt mortal fear. the very real threat of King Saul trying to kill him. Whereas I think Elijah just didn’t want to deal with Jezebel, I think he was tired of fighting the whole bunch. {Complete unrelated side note here, I do love what Jesus said about Jezebel in the book of Revelation, He refers to her as “That woman, Jezebel” and notes that He gave even her a chance to repent, she just evidently did not accept it. Worth thinking about when the devil tries to tell people that they have been too “bad” to be saved.}

Back to David, here he is, he has already BEEN anointed to be King over Israel but as it looks now, if he dares show his face, he will never be King because Saul is very intent on “making a memory outta him.”  Now the funny thing about caves is that sometimes what your hiding from can end up in that cave with you!

 1 Samuel24:3 : ” And he (King Saul) came to the sheepcotes by the way, where was a CAVE; and Saul went in to cover his feet ( attend his needs): and DAVID AND HIS MEN REMAINED IN THE SIDES OF THE CAVE.” Now David’s men were ecstatic and told him this was a divine appointment to take out his enemy but David saw it an a chance to sow some mercy and trust the Lord and would not kill Saul. Instead he cut off a piece of his clothing to prove to Saul just how close he had been and that if he wished him harm he could have nailed him right there. But even in doing that he felt guilty, because vengeance IS God’s and sometimes that is hard for us to remember but David passed this one.

  Now, how he got through his cave experience, he REMEMBERED what God tried to make Elijah see and he thought upon these things and this was his daily bread. This is some of what he actually wrote while in the cave.

Psalm 57: 1-3  “BE MERCIFUL UNTO ME, O GOD, BE MERCIFUL UNTO ME:  for MY SOUL TRUSTETH IN THEE:  yea, IN THE SHADOW OF THY WINGS WILL I MAKE MY REFUGE, UNTIL these calamities be overpast (passed by). I WILL cry unto God most high: unto God that performeth all things for me. HE SHALL SEND FROM HEAVEN, AND SAVE ME FROM THE REPROACH OF HIM THAT WOULD SWALLOW ME UP. SELAH. GOD SHALL SEND FORTH HIS MERCY AND TRUTH.” 

His strongest assets were that he KNEW the power of prayer and praise. Even though we view him as someone who was so close to God (and he was) who could kill lions and bears (and he did) and someone who could hit a giant head on and take that head, someone who walked in the anointing and presence of God, but still he was exactly what we are, HUMAN and he also became afraid, troubled, and discouraged but here is his cry, let it be ours:

Psalm 55:1-8: “Give ear to my prayer, O God, and hide not thyself from my supplication. attend unto me, and hear me: I mourn (wander) in my complaint, and make a noise; BECAUSE of the VOICE OF MY ENEMY, BECAUSE of THE OPPRESSION OF THE WICKED: for thy cast iniquity upon me, and in wrath they hate me. MY HEART IS SORE PAINED WITHIN ME: AND THE TERRORS OF DEATH ARE FALLEN UPON ME, FEARFULNESS AND TREMBLING ARE COME UPON ME, AND HORROR HATH OVERWHELMED ME. And I said, oh that I had wings like a dove! for then would I FLY AWAY AND BE AT REST. LO, THEN WOULD I WANDER FAR OFF, AND REMAIN IN THE WILDERNESS. SELAH. I WOULD HASTEN (SPEED UP) MY ESCAPE FROM THE WINDY STORM AND THE TEMPEST.”

Yeah, KING DAVID, the mighty warrior to end all warriors, who throne IS established FOREVER, whose words written in his place of anguish still shine as a mighty light THOUSANDS of years later.

He was scared, he was tired, and he very much wanted to run away to escape all these things and NEVER return again. Sometimes so do we. Next time we will listen closely and try to hear the words of the KING OF KINGS as HIS voice resonates into our own caves, as He calls us out, our souls feeding on the bread of life, His word and His promises. 

Φλογίζω NBJ 2016

Original post date: 01/16/2016 *Revisited 06/27/2019*

 

Groovin’ the Gauntlet

“For I reckon that the sufferings of this present time are not worthy to be compared with the glory which shall be revealed in us” Romans 8:18

The Gauntlet, the reality of the answer of the age old question, what is the meaning of life. That is the answer, not quite what you would think is it?

We are all souls with God, who is eternal, no beginning, no ending, self -existing and ever existent  until we are born to this earth.

As God told Jeremiah, first chapter- fifth verse: “BEFORE I formed thee in the BELLY, I KNEW THEE; and BEFORE thou camest forth out of the womb I SANCTIFIED (set apart) THEE, AND I ORDAINED (appointed)THEE A PROPHET UNTO NATIONS.

As with the names that were written BEFORE the earth was formed. Our souls just as they are eternal, were with Him until time for whatever the reason, to be born onto the gauntlet field of this world.

1st Ephesians 1:4: “According as He hath chosen us in Him BEFORE the FOUNDATIONS OF THE WORLD, that we should be holy and without blame before him in love.”

So we are born, hit the ground and IT IS ON.

 The gauntlet is formed against us BEFORE we can even hit the ground running, because the enemy knows more about you than you do!

The gauntlet of the “tares”, the weeds the devil planted among the children, on one side and facing you on the other side the demonic forces of hell, so you start your run between the tongue wagging finger pointers running themselves, trying to set those stumbling blocks before you, every imaginable scheme will be hatched for their use as a weapon against you, just trying to knock you down with everything they’ve got.

So you are running as fast as you can trying to keep one eye on the course in front of you and one eye on the weapons coming after you but then you see on the other side of your course the demonic forces armed and ready with snares and traps set every step of the way and many, many archers with their bows poised and the fiery darts ready to rain down, the farther you make it the more they are gonna hit from both sides, the “holier than thous” just dying to see you fall so they can tell all their buddies they were right about you the whole time, the devil starts bringing out bigger and bigger giants, more and more archers and sends the storms chasing you.

Sound pretty unbelievable?  Ah, Jesus said “for this cause” He was born into the world.  His cause being to DIE on a cross, not only die but to be tortured, humiliated, and rejected, his gauntlet beginning with his forty days in the wilderness, which HE MADE IT THROUGH HIS FORTY DAYS, he remained completely spotless and sinless and us being human CAN never achieve that, BUT we are to strive and stay on that course.

Now add in just the reality of living, grief, sorrow, heartache, because it rains on the just and the unjust, EVERYONE WILL RUN THE GAUNTLET.

But those with Christ have an expected end to this course.

This is the reason we are commanded to NOT look to the right or to the left, and NEVER EVER LOOK BACK, only forward, if we don’t look to either side we can’t lose focus worrying about what is getting ready to hit us and WE ARE COMMANDED more than once to not look back, if you do you will see what is gaining on you and you will stumble over those blocks that has been placed before you.

Your entire reason for living is to bring glory to the Father and to help as many as you can run the gauntlet that has been set before them by the god of this world  (2nd Corinthians  4:4).

Paul was very apt in describing his gauntlet and we often feel that our burdens are heavy but I know for me, I gain so much encouragement from reading what they suffered and being blessed to read the end of their stories and how God used all those things to enlarge the Kingdom.

2 Corinthians 11:23-30 ” Of the Jews five times I received forty stripes save one (they thought it merciful to give 39 lashes as opposed to the 40 you were sentenced to, so at the time he wrote this Paul HAD RECEIVED A TOTAL OF 195 lashes) . 

Thrice was I beaten with rods, once was I stoned, thrice I suffered shipwreck, a night and a day I have been in the deep; journeys often, in perils of waters, IN PERILS BY THE BRETHREN, in perils in the city, in perils in the wilderness, in perils in the sea, IN PERILS AMONG FALSE BRETHREN ( notice both groups listed, the ones who ARE your brethren that set those stumbling blocks and the FALSE brethren sent by the enemy). 

In weariness and painfulness, in watchings (sleeplessness) often, in hunger, in thirst, in fastings often, in cold and nakedness.

BESIDES THOSE THINGS (other things) WHICH COME UPON ME DAILY, the care of all the churches.

Who is weak, and I am not weak? Who is offended (MADE TO STUMBLE), and I burn ( BURN WITH INDIGNATION) not?

IF I must needs glory, I WILL GLORY OF THE THINGS WHICH CONCERN MINE INFIRMITIES.”

 What he was saying if he survived all these things and yet glorified God in all them through showing love to others, how could ANYONE complain of their own sufferings?

He learned the groove of the gauntlet,  he learned to accept it for what it is and go with it.    

 He knew that is had to be ran, to fight it just held him up and there was people whose lives would be changed, there were others to help.

His purpose was NOT to fight in retaliation those who manned his gauntlet but to show the love listed above, to grab onto those who had fallen or were wounded by fiery darts and pull them with him to the finish line.

Acts 16 tells us of the arrest of Paul and Silas for doing just that, praying for a possessed girl to be delivered, this enraging those who were using her possession to make money through fortune telling, they were beaten and thrown in prison.

Paul had learned to be content in ALL situations and learned to REJOICE in affliction because the more he suffered for the Gospel, the GREATER the POWER OF GOD rested upon him, so with excruciating lash wounds on their backs they STILL sang and praised God, this pleasing God who sent an earthquake and opened every cell, now they could have left, completely free and thought “Ha, Ha the jerks get what they deserve for beating us.”  

BUT when Paul saw that the jailer was going to commit suicide because they had all escaped, Paul called to him NOT TO harm himself that they were all there.

That is that love and the jailer and his entire family was saved because Paul knew how to play the gauntlet and HE DID EXACTLY what GOD WANTED HIM TOO.

Just as Jesus “who for the joy SET BEFORE HIM ENDURED THE CROSS, DESPISING THE SHAME, and is sat down at the right hand of the Father.”

Those of Hebrews 11, who should give anyone hope and courage to press on.

Learn to groove that gauntlet, play it smoother than any jazz tune ever played.

The prize we seek is NOT in this world.

It is in the next and the true secret is what they knew, press on, press on, press on.

Pick yourself up, let the tears fly as you run, but RUN, RUN with everything you got and grab on to all you see who have fallen in their own race against the gauntlet, pull them, drag them whatever you have to do to help them to that finish line, but never ever look at those opposing you just look to the Author and Finisher of your faith.

He made it through His forty days and Forty nights and then He ran that gauntlet that hell itself had prepared and he died running it BUT HE ROSE and FOREVER SHALL REIGN!

Φλογιζω/ NBJ 2015 

Original post date 12/04/15 revisited 07/01/2020 As you go through your day and your week, please remember that this world and the troubles of this world are temporary, just as our first verse assures us and in these awful days in which we live set yourself with one purpose and one goal and that goal is this, a reminder of what Jesus told us,NEVER LET THEM STEAL YOUR CROWN.

RESURRECTION PEACE/ Part 2

 2nd Thessalonians 4:16   “For the Lord himself shall descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel, and with the trump of God: and the dead in Christ shall rise first;…
The fundamental of the Gospel of Peace.
Jesus Christ the only begotten Son of God, born of a virgin, completely sinless, crucified and rose from the dead three days later to reign forever in all of heaven and earth.
This is our hope and confidence, our Savior lives and reigns forever and of His kingdom shall be no end.
His name alone being the only name by which anyone can be saved and HE IS the only way to the father, any who try to come any other way, other than through the precious blood of the Lamb is nothing more than a thief and robber.
Maybe it does weird out those who don’t understand it, just a little, but again how can you voice an opinion against something you have never experienced nor understand?
Without this promise we would surely be hopeless and what would the hope of our salvation be?
But we that are his know that this is real just as HE IS real.
This does not mean, as some doctrines teach, that it is instant, kill us and we will pop right back up kind of thing. This will take place in the great resurrection when time shall be no more.
But it is our hope and confidence, I want to give you an extreme example:

Job 19:25,26:  “For I know that my redeemer liveth, and that he shall stand at the latter-day upon the earth: And though after my skin worms destroy THIS BODY, YET in my FLESH SHALL I SEE GOD.”
                        
What is this power? Dead, BEEN dead, bodies destroyed by natural processes but yet those bodies will be made new?
The same power that created them and can recreate them regardless of damage.

Once we wrap our heads around letting go of the fear of losing these lives then the remainder and “the rest” will be peaceful!

The prophet Elisha who had been given double the anointing of God that Elijah held and remember Elijah had prayed for fire from heaven and for resurrection of another, rain and for the Jordan to let him cross, not to mention being divinely fed by a raven and an angel of God.
So the miracles he could ask for, the faith to move anything and ask for the impossible, Elisha carried double that in his body and the Bible tells the strength in that anointing and the fact that it is eternal:

 2nd Kings 13: 20,21: “And Elisha died, and they buried him. And the bands of the Moabites invaded the land at the coming in of the year.
And it came to pass, as they were burying a man, that, behold, they spied a band of men; and they cast (tossed) the man into the sepulcher of Elisha: and when the man was let down, and touched the bones of Elisha, HE REVIVED, AND STOOD UPON HIS FEET.”
My favorite example of this has not yet happened, oh, but it will!
As people get more and more evil and the true word of God becomes harder and harder to come by He will actually send back two that have been here before.
I personally believe this will be Moses and Elijah because of the description of their gifts.
Revelation 11:3,5-11:  “And I will give power unto my two witnesses, and they shall prophesy a thousand two hundred and three score days, (around three and one half years) clothed in sackcloth.
And if any man will hurt them, fire proceedeth  out of their mouth and devoureth their enemies: and if any man hurt them, he must in this manner be killed.
These have power to shut heaven, that it not rain in the days of their prophesy: And have power over waters to turn them to blood, and to smite the earth with ALL PLAGUES, as often as they will.
And when they shall have finished their testimony, the beast that ascendeth out of the bottomless pit shall make war against them, and shall overcome them and KILL THEM.
And their DEAD bodies shall lie in the street of the great city which spiritually is called Sodom and Egypt, where also our Lord was crucified.
And they of the people and kindreds and tongues and nations (all people) shall see their dead bodies three days and an half, and shall not suffer (permit) their dead bodies to be put in graves.
And they that dwell upon earth shall rejoice over them, and make merry, and shall sends gifts one to another; because these two prophets tormented them that dwell on the earth.
AND after three days and an half, THE SPIRIT OF LIFE FROM GOD ENTERED INTO THEM, AND THEY STOOD UPON THEIR FEET; AND GREAT FEAR FELL UPON THEM WHICH SAW THEM.”
           
Once upon a time, this was hard for people to understand, how could the whole world see this, but we know now don’t we?
Most of us today couldn’t even stand even near these two with the anointing and the level of sheer holiness they will carry.
And as the world will continue to become more blind and hate all things of God when they come in sackcloth, urging repentance, pronouncing judgments the world will be so happy to see them dead because they will no longer hear the voice of truth, that they will in fact have a world-wide celebration.
But as we know, once they are resurrected and taken, the real party is just getting started!

To read first post, please click here:Resurrection Peace part 1
Φλογίζω/All rights reserved NBJ 2015

“ASCENSION PART3 / CLIMB”

Song of Solomon 4:6: “Until the day break, and the shadows flee, I will get me to the mountain of myrrh and the hill of frankincense.”
Mountain climbing, some saying simply “because it is there” but that really doesn’t get it in the spirit world now does it?
That verse tells us a couple of things, we are going somewhere, to the mountain of myrrh, where we will die to our flesh and shed all the excess junk we are carrying on this trip, because the higher we climb the more junk and baggage we will toss to lighten the load and make it easier to climb.
The hill of frankincense, the place of effective spiritual intercession is our goal and we have determined that we will get there and we will stay there until day breaks over the spirit world and the shadows of death and hell flee away.
The myrrh is a mountain and the hill is frankincense because the hardest part of dying to our own flesh and coming to the place of purification that we can stand in that place of prayer, it is NOT about being a great person or most “spiritual” it is about having a heart for God.
As David said, the one thing he would seek after to inquire in the temple and worship God in the beauty of HIS holiness, (not ours) once that is accomplished the intercession isn’t quite daunting a task.
It takes a determination, a very wise man once chatted with me about a very simple biblical truth, “many are called but few are chosen” many are saved and are happy right where they are and that is perfectly okay, but God is looking for those who seek more, who are aware of the needs of others and KNOW there are greater works to be done in these precious, blessed last days.
They have the heart as Isaiah’s which echoes “Here am I Lord, send me” and those will be his chosen vessels to accomplish the works and bring in the harvest.
There are nine spiritual gifts, and I do believe there will be people who the Lord flows these gifts through on an as needed basis.
So many have chosen not to seek the gifts God has given them, but the work still has to get done and I do believe it will be by a multi-tasking army.
So some may start climbing that mountain and decide it is a little too steep and the trip is just not worth it, and ask “How do we even know anything is up there anyway?”
Some may have to stop on the way and reach down to help another back up and there may be times that we are carrying each other until strength returns.
You have to know why you want to climb that mountain, I determined long ago that I’d climb the bloody thing or I would die on the way up, because I know my motivation, I know my prayers to the only one who holds it all in his nail scarred hands, when I just want to tell him just how much I can’t do this, how I just simply cannot go one more step, I remember, I remember he was completely stripped, beaten beyond recognition and brutally nailed to a cross and displayed for the whole world to ridicule and he did it because he had a mountain to climb, the hill of the ultimate intercession, a hill named Calvary, the intercession to save all of mankind, and the only way for him to do that was to climb that hill.
Then I remember, he forever holds me, I have no strength in me, but through him I can do all things, and I ask myself what am I climbing for anyway?
I climb on behalf of every child that lives in horror and abuse, I climb for every animal tortured, I climb for every victim of ethnic cleansing after seeing the hollow soul stripped eyes on CNN of the genocidal rape victims of the Taliban, I climb for every elderly person that lives at the complete mercy of others in nursing homes and privately.
I climb out of my pain, the awareness that there are stripe scars on my soul so deep that they are my cross to be borne, and a very personal vendetta against hell itself, to see it brought to its knees and maybe the chance to scream a list of “things that are just not nice to do to people” at Satan when Jesus casts him and his angels into an eternal fire of hell.
If you could see this mountain in the spirit world, I think you would have to compare it to stairs, the light of that place being the soft glow of lamplight and a single file journey, an ascension upward of prayers, starting with the gathering censers of incense ( prayers of the saints) and as they persist, maybe feeling like they aren’t getting anywhere at first, oh, but it is, as they climb higher and higher, a change takes place, that cumbersome clothing will become robes, symbolic of the covering of the righteousness of God.

The censers of incense will become the effectual, fervent spoken prayer of the righteous offered up in the presence of God unlike anything some of them have ever known.
The Holy Spirit leads us, the Holy Ghost overtakes us, and while you know all that, there is a manifestation of his presence, just as when he came to the disciples and Paul, you may not see him but you will know he is standing right there.
On that mountain top, or after the ascension of those spiritual “stairs”, however you choose to relate to it, it will be “Ask and it shall be given” And if this is your desire, get your motivation, remember those you “climb” for, keep climbing till you reach the top.

Psalm 65:4:“Blessed is the man whom thou choosest, and causest to approach unto thee, that he may dwell in thy courts; we will be satisfied with the goodness of thy house, even thy holy temple.”

Psalm 12:7: “For the oppression of the poor, for the sighing of the needy, NOW WILL I ARISE, saith the Lord: I WILL set him in safety from him that puffeth at him.”
Remember why you climb, and climb.

Φλογίζω/original post:01/17/2015. All rights reserved. Rev. Nina BrownJohnson 2015

Ascension Part1 Night watchmen     Ascension part 2 Intercession