“Simply Blessed”

“BLESS the Lord, O my soul: and all that is within me, Bless his holy name.

Bless the Lord, O my soul, and forget not all his benefits:

Who forgiveth all thine iniquities, who healeth all thy diseases;

Who redeemeth thy life from destruction; who crowneth thee with lovingkindness and tender mercies;

Who satiisfieth thy mouth with good things; so that thy youth is renewed like the eagle’s.

The Lord executeth righteousness and judgment (justice) for those who are oppressed.

He made known his ways unto Moses, his acts unto the children of Israel.

The Lord is merciful, and gracious, slow to anger, and plenteous in mercy.

He will not always chide (strive): neither will he keep his anger for ever.

He hath not dealt with us after our sins; neither rewarded us according to our iniquities.

For as heaven is high above earth, so great is his mercy toward them that fear him.

As far as the east is from the west, so far hath he removed our transgressions from us.

Like a father pitieth his children, so the Lord pitieth them that fear him.

For he knoweth our frame (human condition);he remebereth that we are dust.

As for man, his days are as grass: as the flower of the field, so se flourisheth.

For the wind passeth over it, and it is gone; and the place thereof shall know (remember) it no more.

But the mercy of the Lord is from everlasting to everlasting upon them that fear him, and his righteousness upon children’s children.

To such as keep his covenant, and those that remember his commandments to do them.” Psalm 103:1-19

We often think of blessing as asking the Lord to bless us, or bless those we care for, or have a need, and he does truly bless us and those we seek him on behalf of.

But what about when we bless him? When we give praise and honor to him and his Holy Name.

When we worship in his presence in that secret place of our prayer closet bringing all of our gratitude, not only for what he has done but for who he is.

When we begin to bless him, we then are blessed in him and in his presence, his mercy and grace, forgiveness, and healing, even renewing us, repairing the damages caused by the years of toil and strife of years of life lived without him.

He will repair all that has been broken, he will restore the years the cankerworm has eaten away, he will give the oil of joy for mourning, and he will renew not only your strength as the eagle’s but renew your youth.

“He giveth power to the faint; and to them that have no might he increaseth strength.

Even the youths shall faint and be weary, and the young men shall utterly fall:

But they that wait upon the Lord shall renew their strength;

they shall mount up with wings as eagles;

they shall run, and not be weary; they shall walk, and not faint.” Isaiah 40:29-31

As you bless him you will be the one who is truly blessed!

Φλογιζω NBJ 2022/ Rev. N. Brown Johnson

 

“Give it a Run for The Money and Keep on Truckin”

Guess I gotta give the low down ’bout that title, I am seriously missing my Sissy today, I actually miss her everyday but today has been exceptionally hard.

Probably because it’ my niece’s birthday, which was such a wonderful event for us all, she is an awesome person and like my own kid to me and her mother adored her, she adored both of her daughters, and the last words she spoke on this earth was for her to take care of her sister and that she loved her.

She was the voice of prayer and encouragement to accept my calling despite the odds against me, and it seems fitting to give nods to those who help us find our way, giving of themselves beyond any reasonable expectation, and she did, from praying for me constantly, to listening to my sermons, encouraging me not to be nervous and being the first reader of every post.

She would have dug this title.

We had our own language, she was a flower child, and she was star of my childhood, and my closet confidant for the remainder of her life.

But she was especially magical to me as a child, she was always so beautiful and so hip, in her jeans with peace sign patches and her super cool music that we would sing together and of course I was fascinated with her love life and spied out the window whenever she came home from a date,

Which usually followed with an “Ewww, you kissed him!”  when she came in, but she was wonderful and put up with me and loved me and grew up to be one of the greatest women of God anyone could have ever known, her last years marred by circumstance beyond her control, but she finished strong.

And even while she was dying, she was laughing and joking, much of it filmed by my daughter, which I don’t think I could ever bear to watch, but it was joy during heartache and for brief moments made us forget that these were our last moments.

We were using our age-old funk jive language that we spoke often, much to the disdain of others at times, who hadn’t a clue what on earth we were saying, but our whole family was like that, including my late brother, but when your family comes from mixed heritages with so many old sayings, and siblings whose formative years span multiple decades, you are bound to end up with some bodacious lingo.

“Run for the Money” means to give your actions everything you have to give and put and fight with everything you have inside of you against whatever stands in your way, basically “Don’t lay down and die”, another oldie but goodie, Keep on Truckin” means to just go on and keep going on and never stop.

So now that intro is out of the way and you can dig my groove with it, we’ll get deadly serious and flip this baby into Old English and go forth!

Galatians 6:9: ” And let us not be weary in well doing, for in due season we shall reap, if faint not.”

Our key words in that verse being if we faint not. Letting us know beyond a shadow of doubt that there are times that we feel so tired either physically or mentally or are so truly exhausted that we feel that we cannot go on and it is in those times that others will need you the most.

When you are tired and worn that is when someone else will need your strength to stand with them.

When you are grieving that is when someone else will need your comfort to bear their own storm.

When you feel your loneliest that is when someone else will need a friend.

When you are your sickest that is the moment someone else will need the prayer of faith for a miraculous healing.

We could go on and on with afflictions, but you can surmise it like this, whatever you’re struggling with, someone else needs the positive to your negative.

That is why it is written as “Let us not be weary”, when we feel like giving up the most is when we need to fight the hardest and then we reap what we have sown at a later time, when we need it the most.

Think of it as showing love, patience, and mercy to someone who never seems to show the same to you, if you continue to sow goodness, even when you feel least capable of it, you will then reap all of that beauty back to yourself, God’s goodness and mercy coming back home to you in the moment you need it most.

I have used this story in post past, but I am going to again, as we go through these thirty teachings to remember to help ward off the apostasy we hear today.

The Bible is full of wonderful accounts of this concept in action, but in my opinion, it is the greatest story of this teaching.

Acts 16: 16-34:“And it came to pass, as We went to prayer, a certain damsel possessed with a spirit of divination met with us, which brought her masters much gain (lots of money) by soothsaying (fortune telling).

The same (she) followed Paul and Silas, and cried, saying, These men are servants of the most high God, which shew unto us the way of salvation. 

And this did she many days but Paul being grieved (greatly annoyed), turned and said to the spirit, I command thee, in the name of Jesus Christ to come out of her. And he came out the same hour.

And when her masters saw that the hope of their gain was gone (they could no longer make money from her), they caught (seized) Paul and Silas, and drew (dragged) them into the marketplace unto the rulers.

And brought them to the magistrates, saying, These men, being Jews, do exceedingly trouble our city. 

And teach customs, which are not lawful for us to receive, neither to observe, being Romans.

And the multitude rose up together against them; and the magistrates rent (tore) off their clothes, and commanded to beat them.

And when they had laid many stripes upon them, they cast them into prison, charging(ordering) the jailor to keep them safety(securely).

Who, having received such a charge (order), thrust them into the inner prison, and made their feet fast (fastened their feet) in stocks.

And at midnight Paul and Silas prayed and sang praises unto God; and the prisoners heard them.

And suddenly there was a great earthquake, so that the foundations of the prison were shaken: and immediately all the doors were opened, and every one’s bands were loosed (chains feel off).

And the keeper of the prison awaking out of his sleep, and seeing the prison doors open, he drew out his sword, and would have killed himself, supposing that the prisoners had fled. 

But Paul cried with a loud voice, saying, Do thyself no harm: for we are all here.

Then he called for a light, and sprang (ran) in, and came trembling, and fell down before Paul and Silas.

And brought them out, and said, Sirs, what must I do to be saved?

And they said, Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, and thou shalt be saved, and thy house (family also)

And they spake unto him the word of the Lord, and to all that were in his house.

And he took them the same hour of the night, and washed their stripesand was baptized, he and all of his straightway.

And when he had brought them into his house, he set meat (food) before them, and rejoiced, believing in God with his whole house (family).”

So much there, I am so glad we got that story into one of our thirty.

This is a great lesson on dealing with people who want to argue you with you about psychics, and all that jazz, this clearly states that she could foretell things because she was possessed by a demonic spirit that was responsible for that.

But the true beauty of the story is that Paul and Silas, after being beaten, literally striped for doing something good, praying to the Lord to release this girl from the demonic grip and being chained down with their feet even in stocks. I can’t imagine what pain they endured. When we think how painful a cut or scratch can be as they burn if anything touches and you can imagine how dark, damp, and nasty the prison would have been and confined, unable to move in that pain.

But they prayed and the praised and God, who inhabits the praises of his people, sent an earthquake in response, that not only were they heard, but everyone also who heard them, would be freed.

There is so much symbolism in that, as to the light we can shine to others, they were all prisoners there, but Paul and Silas were spiritually free and that freedom brought the light of God to them all.

Paul’s compassion from the Lord being so great in him, that he did not wish to see the jailor commit suicide, and this love is not human, this love was not because Paul was a great guy, or the master of forgiveness, No, this love came because Jesus lived in Paul.

And with that love and compassion shown through their own pain, the jailor was saved and all of his family, in one moment, in one fateful night.

So how important is it to keep on doing what we are supposed to do, to keep on loving in the face of hate, to keep on forbearing in faith? I think the answer is already there.

We will never know how a single word, or a single action can affect eternity, but we know that it does, even the actions that may seem the smallest can have the most influential eternal impact and give the fight all you have to give and once you have given that, look inside and give a little more!

God will give us everything we need to accomplish everything he has purposed to be achieved in our lives and when you feel like you got it the least is when you have it the most.

Φλογιζω NBJ 2022/ Rev. N. Brown Johnson

            Ruby Faye Brown

“Leaving it all Behind”

“And it came to pass, that, as the people pressed (crowded) upon him to hear the word of God, he stood by the lake of Gennesaret,

And he saw two ships standing by the lake, but the fishermen were gone out of them, and were washing their nets.

And he entered into one of the ships, which was Simon’s, and prayed him that he would (asked him to) thrust out a little from the land. And he sat down, and taught the people out of the ship.

Now when he left (finished) speaking, he said unto Simon, Launch out into the deep, and let down your nets for a draught (catch)

And Simon answering, said unto him, Master (Teacher), we have toiled all night, and have taken nothing (caught nothing): nevertheless at thy word I will let down the net.

And when they had this done, they inclosed (caught) a great multitude of fishes: and their net brake (was breaking).

And they beckoned unto their partners, which were in the other ship, that they should come and help them. And they came, and filled their ships, so that they began to sink.

When Simon Peter saw it, he fell down at Jesus’ knees, saying, Depart from me: for I am a sinful man, O Lord.

For he was astonished, and all that were with him, at the draught (catch) of the fishes which they had taken.

And so was also James, and John, the sons of Zebedee, which were partners with Simon. And Jesus said unto Simon, Fear not: from henceforth thou shalt catch men.

And when they had brought their ships to land, they forsook (left behind) all, and followed him.” Luke 5:1-11

Peter caught on pretty quickly, not only did he get the catch of a lifetime, but he caught on to who exactly it was that he was dealing with, and he knew by this absolute miracle that this was the work of the divine,

At the very moment he realized that Jesus was not your ordinary teacher, he fell to his knees, and he was convicted in his heart by Jesus’ presence, Jesus did not have to say a word about Peter’s life or anything he needed to change, his holiness itself stirring that need to repent in Peter.

Some of saddest reasons we ever hear from those who know they need salvation but never actually take steps to make that commitment, are “I want to wait until I can live it.” and behaviors in their lifestyles that they feel that they are unable to “give up”, never realizing that their next breath could be the last and that they could quite possibly miss eternal salvation.

Jesus referred to this state in the parable of the Sower, they hear and they know that God is real and his word is true,

Mark 4:18,19: “And these are they which are sown among thorns, such as hear the word,

And the cares of this world, and the deceitfulness of riches, and the lusts of other things entering in, choke the word, and it becometh unfruitful.” 

We have discussed in great detail the watering down and outright misrepresentation of the Gospel running rampant in these last days, and this is why, they refuse to give up the things of this world, such as in our passage above, after they had encountered Jesus, they left behind all that they had known before and followed in trust, and faith, and obedience.

Once we truly seek him and he makes his presence known we are absolutely unable to do the things we had once done, the sin we once enjoyed becomes a frightful charge that we need exonerated.

Which is exactly why Christ shed his blood for us.

We need not worry about changing ourselves or being “able to live it”, we can do neither, that is the work that God does in us through his Holy Spirit.

” And they shall come thither, and they shall take away all the detestable things thereof and all the abominations thereof from thence.

And I will give them one heart to, and I will put a new spirit within you (them) and I will take stony heart out of their flesh, and will give them a heart of flesh:

That they may walk in my statues, and keep mine ordinances (judgments), and do them: and they shall be my people, and I will be their God.

But as for them whose heart walketh after the heart of their detestable things and their abominations, I will recompense their way (repay) their way upon their own heads, saith the Lord God.” Ezekiel 11:18-21

Φλογιζω NBJ 2022/Rev. N Brown Johnson

 

 

“Enough for Today”

“Therefore I say unto you, Take no thought (Do not worry) for your life, what ye shall eat, or what ye shall drink; nor for your body, what ye shall put on. Is not the life more than meat (food), and the body more than raiment (clothing)?

Behold the fowls of the air; for they sow not, neither do they reap, nor gather into barns; yet your heavenly Father feedeth them.  Are you not much better than they? 

Which of you, by taking thought can add one cubit to his stature? And why take ye thought (worry about) for raiment?

Consider the lilies of the field, how they grow; they toil not, neither do they spin:

And yet I say unto you, Solomon in all his glory was not arrayed (clothed) as one of these.

Wherefore if God so clothed the grass of the field, which to day is, and to morrow is cast into the oven, shall he not much more clothe you, O ye of little faith?

Therefore take no thought (do not worry) , saying, What shall we eat? or What shall we drink? or Wherewithal shall we be clothed?

(For after all these things do the Gentiles seek) for your heavenly Father knoweth that ye have need of all these things.

But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness: and all these things shall be added unto you

Take therefore no thought for the morrow: for the morrow shall take thought for the things of itself.

Sufficient unto the day is the evil (trouble) thereof.” Matthew 6:25-34

I love birds, all birds, it fascinates me to no end how God used the dove to bring back the olive branch to Noah to let him know it was now safe to resume life on earth, and that he used the ravens to feed Elijah during the famine. and the Holy Spirit in the bodily form as a dove resting on Jesus, and now forever the world’s symbol of peace, and even the super scary bird supper that takes place as the book of Revelation is fulfilled.

They are simply beautiful and to just listen to their songs in the morning and some even sing at night. 

Today I looked outside and noticed on my steps a darling little brown bird, I have no idea what kind, maybe a sparrow, I know some of them super well but others, not so much 🙂 and this little bird had hanging dried weeds out on both side of its beak, just bouncing on the step, looking around, making sure no predators were watching, quite obviously in the process of making a nest, planning for its future family.

I on the other hand, like most of us, had been pondering the craziness of our government (as I do often) and after reading that it had been recommended to start stockpiling food, I started seriously questioning whether or not people should start buying in bulk and stockpiling food and other items for their families and to have it to share if the worst case scenario should occur.

And then I thought about the literal starvation the world over much thanks to Putin who is determined to go down in history, but he is sure not going to go as he thinks, h evil be remember not, as the Great Czar he so wished to be but as a diabolic monster that destroyed millions, maybe billions of lives by the time all is said and done.

The constant threat of nuclear weapons over our heads, food will be a moot point.

How can we worry about all these things? Jesus said it best, as Gentiles, this is our logic.

We all are worried and concerned, gas prices, food prices, sickness, babies not even having formula in what is supposed as the richest country on earth, and looming threats of biological, chemical, and possible nuclear assaults is trying enough to make the most optimistic person think twice.

Then the scripture hit, “consider the ravens” which is how it is written in Luke 12:24, we worry and we worry, and often as my Mom always said, over things that never even happen.

As Jesus said, tomorrow will take care of itself.

We often buy trouble worrying about tomorrow and worrying about tomorrow causes us to lose the joy, and peace of mind that we could have today.

We can do very little in the natural world to change these things, we can give, and we can try to be an encouragement.

But ultimately, we have to pray and trust God, just like Jesus told us too and remember what he has already done  and be like that little bird and get on with life and get on with making future plans and setting goals and having hope. 

And even though the world may be saying that it would be wise, the moment we start to give in to those voices, and stockpile unnecessary food and supplies, gas, we are setting ourselves up for the worst form of worry and anxiety,

Will it be enough? How much would ever be enough?

What happens will it is all used up? It would eventually be all used up. 

Doesn’t take long to realize why Jesus told us not to fall into this trap. Even if we worried ourselves into having it all, we would then be worried about keeping it!

Because He knows what we all have need of and He will take care of every need, but He commanded us also to pray, “Give us this day our daily bread” and that is exactly what he meant!

And of course, I am not talking about if God is leading you to do it, or you are buying up for food banks or anything like that or buying a few extras at a good price and I am talking about the anxiety that tries to sneak into all our minds from time to time.

One of my favorite old sayings is this. “If it isn’t broken, don’t try to fix it.”

We will all know when it breaks and believe me, God will take care of it all then.

ENJOY your day! 

Φλογιζω NBJ 2022/ Rev. N. Brown Johnson

 

“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  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 , I like to revisit these from time to time, HIS love NEVER fails!

“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 (torments) at him.”
Remember why you climb, and climb.

Φλογίζω/original post:01/17/2015. All rights reserved. Rev. Nina Brown Johnson 2015 REVISTED 08/20/2021

Ascension Part1 Night watchmen     Ascension part 2 Intercession

Reaching the river

“As the hart panteth after the water brooks, So panteth my soul after thee, O God. My soul thirsteth for God, for the living God; When shall I come and appear before God?

My tears have been my meat (food) day and night, While they continually say unto me, Where is thy God? When I remember these things, I pour out my soul in me:

For I had gone with the multitude, I went with them to the house of God, With the voice of joy and praise, with a multitude that kept holyday.  WHY are thou cast down (bowed down), O my soul?  and why are thou disquieted (worried, nervous, anxious) in me? 

Hope thou in God: for I shall yet praise him (give thanks) for the help of his countenance (His presence).

O my God, my soul is cast down within me; therefore I will remember thee from the land of Jordan, and the Hermonites, from the hill Mizar.

Deep calleth unto deep at the noise of thy waterspouts: all thy waves and thy billows are gone over me. Yet the Lord will command his lovingkindness  in the daytime, and in the night his song shall be with me, And my prayer unto the God of my life.

I will say unto God my rock, Why hast thou forgotten me? Why go I mourning because of the oppression of my enemy? 

As with a sword in my bones, mine enemies reproach me; While they say daily unto me, Where is thy God? Why art thou cast down, O my soul? and why art thou disquieted within me?

Hope thou in God: For I will yet praise him, Who is the health of my countenance and my God.” Psalm 42:1-11

Every single one of us experience these seasons in life and sometimes we feel like they will never end. When you feel like you can almost hear your circumstances echoing “Where is your God?”

You know that you have served the Lord, you  have went into His house with joy and praise and yet… you know feel your soul bowed down, nervous, anxious and confused as those “enemies” of your peace still vehemently whisper in your ears… Why  are you going through this?

Where is your peace, your joy, and healing? Now to completely seem to jump topic.. I know there are those who have suffered and suffered with the same afflictions for what seems like forever and often we see a televised service or even go to  a revival service that is so charged that you know healing and deliverance  are there… but kinda like the man at the pool who needed a little help getting in the water… it seems something else happens before you get your turn in the prayer line and before you even got started the service ended.

Want to talk to you about that before we finish our verses. The reason those services are charged is not where the services are held (although I do believe in “Holy” grounds) or even who is preaching them or who is singing.

The charge that ignites, if you wll, is the fact that these services are packed with people who have an expectation.. their faith dial is set to wide open flow and as we know where two or three are gathered  together there He is in the midst, so when you have hundreds gathered believing and expecting of course good things are going to take place. But again it is not person nor place, it is level of faith and belief in the fact that He is there.

But some things I believe happen in “different” settings, such as our personal prayer closets. That secret meeting place that is just between you and Jesus. that place of pouring your heart out, such as the verse above, pouring out your tears, your suffering, your fear and your insecurity and allowing His presence to wash over you and flood you in the billows and waves of His Holy Spirit.

As the verse above. he reassured himself that this fight was not over, that this was not the end! His soul would still rejoice in the Lord and in His presence even though it looked quite hopeless at the moment.

Sometimes we are discouraged, sad, and troubled and we don’t even know why.

I believe this happens sometimes.. not always.. so don’t get me wrong.. but when we feel like that longing and nothing major is going wrong in our lives.. I think it can be a longing to draw closer to the Lord.

But in either case, once he started to remember all the marvelous works that the Lord had already performed, thoughts changed, because perception can be a powerful thing.

He remembered and he had hope. Hope because he knew the Lord would send His love and His goodness to him each day, because God’s mercy toward us is “renewed each day” and he knew that God would send the songs of Zion, the songs of hope and encouragement, faith, and peace to comfort him in even the darkest time.

And he learned the power of praying, and praying “without ceasing” to the God of life, God who would give him new life and restore and repair all that had been broken and lead him to those crystal waters and refresh his parched soul.

In our verses, he asked “why” several times and we do not always understand why, but we must hold to that hope and to hold on to that prayer and pray and pray in the “secret place of the Most High” until we are restored, renewed, and refreshed in the times of trouble and doubt.

Seasons pass, troubles fade, and circumstances change so don’t give up your fight and don’t ever give up on God. Troubles come and troubles go, days get brighter and the sun will once again shine but if you give up in that dry, parched land, you will never feel joy and peace until you reach that river and allow Him to refresh you again.

Psalm 46:1-11 “God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in time of trouble.

Therefore we will not fear, though the earth be removed, and though the mountains be carried into the midst of the sea; Though the waters thereof roar and be troubled, Though the mountains shake with the swelling thereof. Selah 

There is a river, the streams whereof shall make glad the city of God. The holy place of the tabernacles of the most High.

God is in the midst of her; she shall not be moved: God shall help her and that right early. The heathen raged, the kingdoms were moved.

The Lord of hosts is with us; The God of Jacob is our refuge. Selah

Come, behold the works of the Lord, What desolations he hath made in the earth. He maketh wars to cease unto the end of the earth; He breaketh the bow, and cutteth the spear asunder (in half); He burneth the chariots in the fire.

Be still, and know that I am God; I will be exalted among the heathen, I will be exalted in the earth.

The Lord of hosts is with us; The God of Jacob is our refuge.”

Hope that jogged your memory!

Run into your prayer closet and don’t come out until you have been drenched!

He does not need an audience, or a preacher, or the congregation to touch and heal you and often the most earth-shaking blessing come completely one on one, you just have to believe that He does hear you and believe that He will answer you and expect Him to rock your world!

Run, walk, or if you have to crawl but reach that river and let nothing hold you back!

Φλογίζω Σαλπιζω NBJ 2017  REVISITED 07/31/2021 Praying it will be an encouragement TODAY!

 

Lettin’ it ride…

“Perverse disputing of men of corrupt minds, and destitute of the truth, supposing that gain is godliness (godliness is a means of gain), from such withdraw thyself. 

But godliness with content  is great gain. For we brought nothing into this world, and it is certain we can carry nothing out.

And having food and raiment (clothing) let us therefore be content.

But they that be (desire to be) rich fall into temptation and a snare, and into many hurtful lusts, which draw men into  destruction and perdition.

For the love of money is the root of all (all kinds of) evil: which while some coveted after, they have erred from the faith, and pierced themselves through with many arrows.

But thou, O man of God, flee these things, and follow after righteousness, godliness, faith, love, patience, and meekness.” 1 Timothy 6:5-11 

This is kinda of a hard thought to relay, but you know with everything going on right now, it is  really good time to remember what really matters and if any of us were to think back for just a moment to our pre- Christ days, I am sure we would all agree that no matter where we were, who our friends were, what job we held, the social circles we moved in that without him we were empty, lost and absolutely dead.

And not only speaking of those who have spent life searching for fortune and fame but now also those who have been content, making money and living a little at a time trying to do their best for their families and think now all have fallen victim to our new, never before dreamt of  perils, with the economy crashing and many having now lost their jobs due to the pandemic and many more in danger of it everyday because this virus just is not going away.

But we got to have hope and our hope is God and his goodness and his provision for all our lives and even if one is not having any pandemic related worries sometimes it can be the world and other people making you feel like you have to be “more”, do “more” that you are measured somehow against some invisible standard that says you must accomplish this or that by some magical date or age, or you are just not worth your salt.

Me and my best friend were discussing the “woes of this world” the other day, and we grew up in such a time that was so different, now everyone has someone that they hate and if you don’t hate that person too, than you are a hater, which is quite the oxymoron, kinda like friendly fire, no one is allowed to have their own opinion and we must walk on eggshells and chose every word very carefully because even the slightest word misspoken will put you under that fire and no one cares if it hurts you, your family, whoever, the world is so ready to put you on public display for that perceived infraction, such as the Pastor that lost his lease because someone noticed he had posted a trump meme.

Have we all forgotten where we came from? Especially those of the house of God, we were not ALL sinners washed by the perfect blood of the Lamb Lord Jesus, do we not all have the same blood, especially when that blood is as heirs of Christ?

And even worse for those who have not made that conversion to salvation because oh we know what it is like when that Holy Spirit conviction comes and we are forced to look into that spiritual mirror of how we have judged and misjudged others, God using that often as that catapult to our own repentance.

But for us,  sometimes the wisest decision  made is to just let things ride and let it all work out in it’s own time and remembering the very wise words spoken by one who knew all these varying emotions well.

“Lay hands suddenly on no man, neither be partaker of other men’s sins, keep thyself pure.” 1 Timothy 5:22,

Paul had written this as he wrapped up his teaching on how to treat one another and expected behaviors of the church.  And I believe, that we are in danger more at this present time, than any time in history of doing just that, of becoming so focused on the moment and choosing the lesser of two evils, that we can easily fall into another sins.  God had so  much written on contentment and contentment with him and in him, this is where we rest.

And in the knowing that this world is but for a moment and you have the awesome promise of eternal reward and eternal fellowship with God, everything pales in comparison to that and if it were our last night on this earth, the only truth that would remain and only thought worth thinking would be thoughts of that glorious day. So I’d like to present you with some scriptures that I pray will keep us will help us all stay focused on what truly makes us free.

“Surely I am more brutish than any man, and have not the understanding of  man. I neither learned wisdom, nor have knowledge of the holy.

Who hath ascended up into heaven, or descended? who hath gathered the wind in his fists? who hath bound the waters in a garment? who hath established all the ends of the earth? what is his name? and what is his son’s name? if thou canst tell (know it)? 

Every word of God is pure, he is a shield unto them that put their trust in him.

Add not unto his words, lest he reprove thee, and thou be found a liar.

Two things have I required (requested) of thee; deny me them not before I die; Remove far from me vanity and lies; give me neither poverty nor riches; feed me with food convenient (you prescribe) for me;

Lest I be full, and deny thee, and say, Who is the Lord? or lest I be poor, and steal, and take the name of my God in vain.” Proverbs 30:2-9 

He is confessing his own humanity and asking for God to take control and let his life be never rich nor poor but content by being divinely governed by the hand of God. 

“Rejoice in the Lord alway: and again, I say Rejoice. Let your moderation (gentleness) be known to all men. The Lord is at hand.

Be careful (anxious) for nothing; but in every thing by prayer and supplication with  thanksgiving let your requests be made known unto God.

And the peace of God, which passeth  all understanding, shall keep your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus.

Finally, brethren, whatsoever things are true, whatsoever things are honest, whatsoever things are just, whatsoever things are pure, whatsoever things are lovely, whatsoever things are of good report;  if there be any virtue, and if there be any praise, think on these things.

But I rejoiced in the Lord greatly, now that at the last your last care of me hath flourished again; wherein you were also careful, but ye lacked opportunity.

Not that I speak in respect of want: for I have learned with whatsoever state I am, to be content. I know both how to be abased (live humbly) , and I know how to abound (live in prosperity): every where and in all things I am instructed both to be full and to be hungry, both to abound and to suffer need.

I can do ALL things through Christ which strengthens me.” Philippians 4:4-13 

He is relaying to us the need to keep our minds focused on those good things and reminding us that God gives us peace that goes so far beyond human comprehension that there are no words to describe it, we are not even capable of understanding the magnitude of that peace.

he is also reiterating the fact that it was needful for him to understand both the concepts of both ends of the spectrum, because in his ability to understand this, he had that contentment through the peace of God and he could also witness that contentment to others, and think of this, he is still witnessing to us with the words about nineteen hundred and fifty some odd years later. 

And finally, Micah 6:8 ” He hath shewed thee, O man, what is good; and what doth the Lord require of thee, but to do justly, and to love mercy, and to walk humbly with thy God?”   

And he is asking this as  a rhetorical question, and we need to ask ourselves this now, what does the Lord expect from us?

The same thing he has always wanted, to repeat those words, to love him, to love justice, to do good, and do what is right, not what the world demands as their interpretation of that right, but what God’s words demand.

“Jesus said unto him, THOU SHALT LOVE THE LORD THY GOD WITH ALL THY HEART, AND WITH ALL THY SOUL, AND WITH ALL THY MIND. This is the first and great commandment. And the second like unto it. THOU SHALT LOVE THY NEIGHBOR AS THYSELF.” Matthew 22:37-39

Just let it ride, as the world does its thing, just find your peace and rest in Jesus and in knowing that in all things he has you and he has your today and tomorrow in the palm of his hand and you can rest in knowing that he will never let you down.

Φλογιζω NBJ 2020/ Rev. Nina Brown Johnson

Take a minute to remember when he set you free! And if you have not made that decision do it today! You WILL never know what you are missing UNTIL you experience the love and peace  of Jesus for yourself! 

I am of the Holiness persuasion, so I gotta love this song, I hope you enjoy it! God bless you and have a wonderful tomorrow ahead!

“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 

 

OUR Father

“I THEREFORE, the prisoner of the Lord, beseech you that ye walk worthy of the vocation (calling) wherewith ye are called.

With all lowliness and meekness, with longsuffering, forbearing one another in love; Endeavoring to keep unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace.

There is one body, and one Spirit, even as ye are called in one hope of your calling. 

ONE LORD, ONE FAITH, ONE BAPTISM, ONE GOD AND FATHER OF ALL, WHO IS ABOVE ALL, AND THROUGH ALL, AND IN YOU ALL.” EPHESIANS 4:1-6

And didn’t Jesus himself state this in John 10:30: “I and the Father ARE one”  I will never forget the moment of truth… MY moment of truth, I had not yet submitted to Christ, but I believed, probably much like many out there, you KNOW the truth but somehow you have bought into the lies that the truth does not apply to you because your too far gone… SUCH A LIE from Satan!

So at any rate, this was years and years and years… you get the point… ago and I was at my sister’s house and this sweet little old man came to the door, who just happened to be a Jehovah’s witness and as I tried my best to politely exit any further discussion he said, “Well, just let me ask you this, what IS God’s name?” and I thought, what on earth kind of question is that? He wants HIS name, I knew I was not easily getting out of the conversation. 

I think the feeling of terror was probably  something kinda like the half excited / half terror Peter felt when Jesus asked him, “But whom say ye that I am?” 

Jesus had ALREADY asked them WHO others said that he was, but he wanted them to say it out of their own mouths and confess their own belief on his identity. 

So I mustered up all my courage, because I had a very legitimate reason to fear… what if I answer this WRONG and OFFENDED God, I KNEW what was in my heart, I KNEW what my soul was screaming out BUT could I actually SAY it out loud? 

So I looked him dead in the eye and as fast as humanly possible I said, JESUS! His name IS Jesus! Of course he explained to me the reason HE felt I and others were completely wrong in that thinking, and that the correct answer is Jehovah, the conversation fortunately soon ended.

I understand the correct answer is Jehovah, the correct answer is also Jesus. God has many, many names but HE IS STILL ONE GOD as the Bible teaches us.

Everything else is just denominational or the lack thereof such as non-denominational. I often wonder if our mixed denominations or non-denominations hold us true to that calling that Paul advised us to “walk worthy of” and I know in the end it will not matter.

I know in the grand realm of things we will all be in for a few surprises, probably some serious surprises but as Paul taught us in that verse when you read between the lines, it may matter HERE more than we think.

We are to walk in love and in UNITY of the Spirit in the bond of peace, that is the forbearing part.

If we argue and dislike each other due to a difference in those beliefs when we ARE saved by the SAME God. We ARE given the gift of the Holy Ghost, again by the SAME and only God then that unity is going right out the door and we are grieving the Holy Spirit through our discord.

So why did Paul tie it so securely to our callings? I believe because we have to have that unity but that in all things we are to be reminded in that unity that we are still individuals.

Matthew 5:13: “Ye are the salt of the earth…”  

Mark 9:49,50: ” For EVERY ONE shall be salted with fire, and EVERY sacrifice salted with salt. Salt is good: but IF the salt has lost his saltiness, wherewith (with what) will ye season it? Have salt IN yourselves, and have peace one with another.”

And if we lose that individuality in not staying true to the calling that we have one hope of then we will become like tasteless salt.

He tells us to have that to be “worth our salt” to have that fire that he “seasoned” us with. It IS our passion to serve him, it is the joy and excitement that we were filled with at the moment of salvation and that desire to spread the word of his love and mercy to the world AS we received it, but if we are not careful, comprising that state of how we received, we fall into his next warning on the subject. 

Luke 14:34,35: “Salt is good: but if the salt have LOST his savour flavor) wherewith (with what)  shall it be seasoned? It is NEITHER fit for the land, NOR yet for the dunghill (rubbish heap) but men cast it out. He that hath ears to hear, let him hear.” 

Pretty clear there isn’t it? Once we lose our “salt” our “fire” HOW would we ever get back what we have given or comprised away?

And if it’s “flavor” is lost, it is then rendered ABSOLUTELY useless, completely and utterly USELESS. As he told us in the verse from Mark, we should have salt ( keeping our individuality in him) and thereby have that peace with one another.

The peace comes form having peace with God and peace in knowing that we are walking “worthy” of that calling. 

Maybe this accounts for some of the falling away in churches while the “secular candy coat churches” are growing like wild.

If we are dried like “caked up” salt why would anyone want to listen to us? Why would God anoint us?  So you may be wondering what this has to do with Father’s Day?

Well, I had never actually written for Father’s Day because I do tend to try to keep it “multi-denominational friendly” but I am going to have to quit that.

And seeing that OUR father, IS the FATHER OF US ALL, regardless of whether you believe that the Trinity consists of the Father, The Son, and The Holy Spirit, as separate (and that IS absolutely true) or if you take the scripture “These THREE ARE ONE” literally (they are and I do)  and that “Jesus IS Lord” and “The Lord IS God”, you know we ARE all correct, that is why in that DAY his NAME SHALL BE ONE. 

And believe me I know there are people on “both sides” of the fence that would like to string me up for that statement BUT it is true!

I also know there are those who think I worry too much about it BUT Jesus told us to have “salt” in ourselves, if we don’t trust what we feel in our hearts as he deals with us then we are already salt less.

We are warned in the Bible to take heed when we THINK we stand, lest we fall.

Because we can become a little to sure that OUR interpretation of scriptures IS the ONLY interpretation, which again, is WRONG.

Jesus NEVER left us to tell other believers what denomination or his “sheep fold” they belong to.

Only he has that authority as he said John 10:16: ” And OTHER sheep I have, which are NOT of this fold: them also I must bring, and they shall hear my voice; and there shall be ONE fold, and ONE shepherd.” 

But now for us to all walk in those calling, walking with passion and purpose as we celebrate Father’s day for our earthly  Father’s, remembering to give honor and praise to our heavenly Father, who truly is the Father of us all! 

If you have never accepted Jesus Christ what a more appropriate time could there be?

John 14:5-21: “Thomas saith unto him, Lord, we know not whiter thou goest: and how can we know the way?  Jesus saith unto him, I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father but by me. If ye had known me, ye should have known my Father also; and from henceforth ye know him , and have seen him. 

Philip saith unto him, Lord, shew (show) us the Father, and it sufficeth us (will satisfy us). Jesus saith unto him, Have I  been so long time with you, and YET thou hast not know me, Philip?  he that hath seen me hath seen the Father; and how sayest thou, then she us the Father?

Believest thou not that I am in the Father, and the Father in me?  the words that I speak unto you I speak not of myself BUT the Father that dwelleth in me, he doeth the works. 

Believe me that I am IN the Father, and the Father is IN me; OR else believe me for the very works sake.

Verily, verily I say unto you, He that believeth on me, the works that I do shall he do also; and greater works than these shall he do; BECAUSE I go unto my Father.

And whatsoever ye  shall ask in my name, that will I do, that the Father might be glorified in the Son. If ye shall ask any thing in my name, I will do it. If ye love me, keep my commandments.

And I will pray the Father, and he shall give you another Comforter, that he may abide with you FOR EVER.

Even the Spirit of truth; whom the world CAN NOT receive, BECAUSE it seeth him not, NEITHER knoweth him; FOR HE DWELLETH WITH YOU, AND SHALL BE IN YOU. 

I WILL NOT LEAVE YOU COMFORTLESS; I WILL COME TO YOU. 

Yet a little while, and the world seeth me no more; BUT YE SEE ME: BECAUSE I LIVE, YE SHALL LIVE ALSO. 

AT THAT DAY YE SHALL KNOW THAT I AM IN MY FATHER, AND YE IN ME, AND I IN YOU.

He that hath my commandments, and keepeth them, he it is that loveth me: and he that loveth me shall be loved of my Father. and I will love him, and WILL MANIFEST (reveal) myself to him.”

Φλογίζω Σαλπίζω NB 2018 

 

 

“360”

“Therefore I will look unto the Lord; I will wait for the God of my salvation; my God will hear me. 

Rejoice not against me, O mine enemy: when I fall, I shall arise; when I sit in darkness the Lord shall be a light unto me.” Micah 7:7,8

Ever feel like the enemy and often enemies are having one heck of a party celebrating what they think and hope is your demise?

I have been through quite a little season and we ALL have, so I never want to come off that I think it is only me…I know better.

I know God’s people have come under attacks like nothing seen before and attacks on every side, many almost falling under that pressure, stumbling a bit, trying to navigate through that darkness as the enemy rejoices because he thinks he can keep us there but he can’t, he doesn’t have that kind of power and the only way we will remain in that darkness is if we continue to sit in it. And the first step to being pulled back up by our boot straps is allowing the light of God that shines on us, to shine through us, and in us.

As Paul wrote in 2 Corinthians 4:5-9: “For we preach not ourselves, but Christ Jesus the Lord: and ourselves your servants for Jesus’ sake. 

For God, who commanded the light to shine OUT OF THE DARKNESS, hath shined in our hearts, to give the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ. 

BUT we have this treasure in earthen vessels, that the excellency of the power may be of God, and not of us.

We are troubled (hard-pressed)on every side, yet NOT distressed (crushed); we are perplexed but not in despair; persecuted, but NOT forsaken; cast (struck) down, but NOT destroyed.”  

Which now brings me to my “360” anyone who follows this blog knows that I lost my Mom in September and also had two more very close family members battling cancer at the same time, so I really hadn’t been keeping this up as I should have so I had felt impressed to “revamp” and do a 360.

I pulled a lot of posts that were personal in content and took away the “baresoul” part of the name and planned to return it to what it was meant to be, so if you are redirected to 360, I assure you, it is safe.

Anyway as I began this process my sister’s condition became worse and there was no one on this earth like my sister, we often joked that we had one brain between us and each had a half, we were that in tune with each other and she was one of the few people who ever encouraged me in ministry, and I knew she was dying, she had been given 24-72 hours the morning I wrote my last post, so I wrote it, dedicated it to her because I couldn’t imagine doing anything without her in my life. So I called it done and went to her house and was there when she passed, even though I had planned to not be there for the last moment, it doesn’t always work out the way we want it to, I wanted her healed, I wanted my Mom healed, I wanted my brother healed but God has reasons and purposes for everything and He is still sovereign.

But during the course of all these things, the enemy loves to use people to just add a little more, it’s like you can’t be going through enough hurt and sorrow, they have to just make that load a little heavier and I was the subject of the most vicious lie filled social media attack and this was hitting areas that were so deplorable that only a sick evil person could have a heart black enough to say such trash, things concerning the death of my mother and even her funeral expenses, which Mom had insurance, but for all the hundreds of people who read that, they’d never know it.

Back to my point, you know, sometimes whipping boys grow a little weary of being whipped. So I held my peace as long as possible and after the burial, I did indeed make that quite known, so I got another social media rant threw at me, which is funny considering I am not even on it now.

But anyway after people believe lies and the looks you get when that final straw snaps does kinda make one rethink everything and I have known through it all that the first thing that would get questioned is my ministry. But you know, God is still God. God is ever merciful and God knows our thoughts before we even think them.

So I determined after two weeks pondering and praying that if I just throw away the opportunity God has given me and I choose to sit in that darkness then I have no one to blame but myself if I fail God and fail the call he has given me. So the 360 is for me, a 360 back to the Lord, to His mercy and forgiveness and away from the games and drama that he NEVER told me that I had to be part of.

A 360 back to the ONLY one whose opinion should matter to me.

A 360 back under the shadow of His wings and his protection.

A 360 back to the prayers that David sang in Psalms as he asked not for power in his flesh to turn back the enemies that rose against him, but he prayed and sang for God, the ONLY power to turn back those enemies on his behalf.

A 360 back to the everlasting arms that hold not only today but our yesterday and tomorrow.

And a 360 for my ministry, which after six years did needed a fresh ray of sunshine, or should I say SON SHINE!

Posts hitting a verse or two, short and hopefully sweet to encourage someone somewhere that you are NEVER alone, NEVER gone to far, and a darkness does not exist that can not be pierced by his marvellous light. 

He sees and He knows and He forgives and He helps us when we can’t help our selves. When we can’t fight the temptation to hold our tongues, when the world looks on in shock because they think they can somehow hide from God their own thoughts.

But He loves us and in that love HE forgives us and His mercy is renewed every single morning IF we will receive it. And I for one have decided that I will receive it and with that I absolutely rescind my “resignation” from my calling.

As long as the Lord allows and as long as He blesses me with this avenue of ministry , it will go on.

And here is our proof, for ALL of us, that He knows, He sees, and we are to be grateful for that.

Psalm 139:1-18: “O Lord, thou hast searched me, and known me. Thou knowest my downsitting and mine uprising, thou understandest my thoughts afar off.

Thou compassest (comprehendeth) my path and my lying down, and art acquainted with all my ways.

For there is not a word in my tongue, but, lo, thou knowest it altogether. Thou hast beset (enclosed, encircled) me behind and before (front and back), and laid thine hand upon me.

Such knowledge is too wonderful for me; it is high, I cannot attain unto it. Whiter shall I go from thy spirit? or whiter shall I flee from thy presence?

If I ascend up into heaven, thou art there: if I make my bed in hell, behold, thou art there.

If I take the wings of the morning, and dwell in the uttermost parts of the sea; Even there shall thy hand lead me, and thy right hand shall hold me.

If I say, Surely the darkness shall cover (fall upon) me ,even the night shall be light around about me.

Yea,the darkness hideth not from thee (is not dark to thee); but the night SHINETH as the day: The darkness and the day are both alike to thee.

For thou hast possessed my reins (formed my inward parts): thou hast covered me in my mother’s womb.

I will praise thee; for I am fearfully and wonderfully made: marvellous are thy works; and that my soul knoweth right well.

My substance (bones) was not hid from thee, when I was made in secret, and curiously wrought in the lowest parts of the earth.

Thine eyes did see my substance, yet being unperfect (unformed) and in thy book all my members were written, which in continuance were fashioned, when as yet there was none of them (our days prepared BEFORE we were still in the womb). 

How PRECIOUS also ARE thy thoughts unto me, O God, how great is the sum of them!

If I should count them, they are more in number than the sand: when I awake, I am still with thee.” 

No matter how down the world gets on us, or how down we get on ourselves, these words should make any heart rejoice!

God telling us through his word that EVEN before He formed us in our mother’s womb. He KNEW us and as these verses describe that formation and that EVEN our days are known BEFORE we ever come forth and that His thoughts toward as are innumerable and ALL those thoughts are precious and for our good!

Thanks for reading!

Φλογιζω NBJ 2019

OUR Father

“I THEREFORE, the prisoner of the Lord, beseech you that ye walk worthy of the vocation (calling) wherewith ye are called.

With all lowliness and meekness, with longsuffering, forbearing one another in love; Endeavouring to keep unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace.

There is one body, and one Spirit, even as ye are called in one hope of your calling. 

ONE LORD, ONE FAITH, ONE BAPTISM, 

ONE GOD AND FATHER OF ALL, WHO IS ABOVE ALL, AND THROUGH ALL, AND IN YOU ALL.” EPHESIANS 4:1-6

And didn’t Jesus himself state this in John 10:30: “I and the Father ARE one”  I will never forget the moment of truth… MY moment of truth, I had not yet submitted to Christ, but I believed, probably much like many out there, you KNOW the truth but somehow you have bought into the lies that the truth does not apply to you because your too far gone… SUCH A LIE from Satan!

So at any rate, this was years and years and years… you get the point… ago and I was at my sister’s house and this sweet little old man came to the door, who just happened to be a Jehovah’s witness and as I tried my best to politely exit any further discussion he said, “Well, just let me ask you this, what IS God’s name?” and I thought, what on earth kind of question is that? He wants HIS name, I knew I was not easily getting out of the conversation. 

I think the feeling of terror was probably  something kinda like the half excited / half terror Peter felt when Jesus asked him, “But whom say ye that I am?” 

Jesus had ALREADY asked them WHO others said that he was, but he wanted them to say it out of their own mouths and confess their own belief on his identity. 

So I mustered up all my courage, because I had a very legitimate reason to fear… what if I answer this WRONG and OFFENDED God, I KNEW what was in my heart, I KNEW what my soul was screaming out BUT could I actually SAY it out loud? 

So I looked him dead in the eye and as fast as humanly possible I said, JESUS! His name IS Jesus! Of course he explained to me the reason HE felt I and others were completely wrong in that thinking, and that the correct answer is Jehovah, the conversation fortunately soon ended.

I understand the correct answer is Jehovah, the correct answer is also Jesus. God has many, many names but HE IS STILL ONE GOD as the Bible teaches us.

Everything else is just denominational or the lack thereof such as non-denominational. I often wonder if our mixed denominations or non-denominations hold us true to that calling that Paul advised us to “walk worthy of” and I know in the end it will not matter.

I know in the grand realm of things we will all be in for a few surprises, probably some serious surprises but as Paul taught us in that verse when you read between the lines, it may matter HERE more than we think.

We are to walk in love and in UNITY of the Spirit in the bond of peace, that is the forbearing part.

If we argue and dislike each other due to a difference in those beliefs when we ARE saved by the SAME God. We ARE given the gift of the Holy Ghost, again by the SAME and only God then that unity is going right out the door and we are grieving the Holy Spirit through our discord.

So why did Paul tie it so securely to our callings? I believe because we have to have that unity but that in all things we are to be reminded in that unity that we are still individuals.

Matthew 5:13: “Ye are the salt of the earth…”  

Mark 9:49,50: ” For EVERY ONE shall be salted with fire, and EVERY sacrifice salted with salt. Salt is good: but IF the salt has lost his saltiness, wherewith (with what) will ye season it? Have salt IN yourselves, and have peace one with another.”

And if we lose that individuality in not staying true to the calling that we have one hope of then we will become like tasteless salt.

He tells us to have that to be “worth our salt” to have that fire that he “seasoned” us with. It IS our passion to serve him, it is the joy and excitement that we were filled with at the moment of salvation and that desire to spread the word of his love and mercy to the world AS we received it, but if we are not careful, comprising that state of how we received, we fall into his next warning on the subject. 

Luke 14:34,35: “Salt is good: but if the salt have LOST his savour flavor) wherewith (with what)  shall it be seasoned? It is NEITHER fit for the land, NOR yet for the dunghill (rubbish heap) but men cast it out. He that hath ears to hear, let him hear.” 

Pretty clear there isn’t it? Once we lose our “salt” our “fire” HOW would we ever get back what we have given or comprised away?

And if it’s “flavor” is lost, it is then rendered ABSOLUTELY useless, completely and utterly USELESS. As he told us in the verse from Mark, we should have salt ( keeping our individuality in him) and thereby have that peace with one another.

The peace comes form having peace with God and peace in knowing that we are walking “worthy” of that calling. 

Maybe this accounts for some of the falling away in churches while the “secular candy coat churches” are growing like wild.

If we are dried like “caked up” salt why would anyone want to listen to us? Why would God anoint us?  So you may be wondering what this has to do with Father’s Day?

Well, I had never actually written for Father’s Day because I do tend to try to keep it “multi-denominationally friendly” but I am going to have to quit that.

And seeing that OUR father, IS the FATHER OF US ALL, regardless of whether you believe that the Trinity consists of the Father, The Son, and The Holy Spirit, as separate (and that IS absolutely true) or if you take the scripture “These THREE ARE ONE” literally (they are and I do)  and that “Jesus IS Lord” and “The Lord IS God”, you know we ARE all correct, that is why in that DAY his NAME SHALL BE ONE. 

And believe me I know there are people on “both sides” of the fence that would like to string me up for that statement BUT it is true!

I also know there are those who think I worry too much about it BUT Jesus told us to have “salt” in ourselves, if we don’t trust what we feel in our hearts as he deals with us then we are already salt less.

We are warned in the Bible to take heed when we THINK we stand, lest we fall.

Because we can become a little to sure that OUR interpretation of scriptures IS the ONLY interpretation, which again, is WRONG.

Jesus NEVER left us to tell other believers what denomination or his “sheep fold” they belong to.

Only he has that authority as he said John 10:16: ” And OTHER sheep I have, which are NOT of this fold: them also I must bring, and they shall hear my voice; and there shall be ONE fold, and ONE shepherd.” 

But now for us to all walk in those calling, walking with passion and purpose as we celebrate Father’s day for our earthly  Father’s, remembering to give honor and praise to our heavenly Father, who truly is the Father of us all! 

If you have never accepted Jesus Christ what a more appropriate time could there be?

John 14:5-21: “Thomas saith unto him, Lord, we know not whiter thou goest: and how can we know the way?  Jesus saith unto him, I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father but by me. If ye had known me, ye should have known my Father also; and from henceforth ye know him , and have seen him. 

Philip saith unto him, Lord, shew (show) us the Father, and it sufficeth us (will satisfy us). Jesus saith unto him, Have I  been so long time with you, and YET thou hast not know me, Philip?  he that hath seen me hath seen the Father; and how sayest thou, then she us the Father?

Believest thou not that I am in the Father, and the Father in me?  the words that I speak unto you I speak not of myself BUT the Father that dwelleth in me, he doeth the works. 

Believe me that I am IN the Father, and the Father is IN me; OR else believe me for the very works sake.

Verily, verily I say unto you, He that believeth on me, the works that I do shall he do also; and greater works than these shall he do; BECAUSE I go unto my Father.

And whatsoever ye  shall ask in my name, that will I do, that the Father might be glorified in the Son. If ye shall ask any thing in my name, I will do it. If ye love me, keep my commandments.

And I will pray the Father, and he shall give you another Comforter, that he may abide with you FOR EVER.

Even the Spirit of truth; whom the world CAN NOT receive, BECAUSE it seeth him not, NEITHER knoweth him; FOR HE DWELLETH WITH YOU, AND SHALL BE IN YOU. 

I WILL NOT LEAVE YOU COMFORTLESS; I WILL COME TO YOU. 

Yet a little while, and the world seeth me no more; BUT YE SEE ME: BECAUSE I LIVE, YE SHALL LIVE ALSO. 

AT THAT DAY YE SHALL KNOW THAT I AM IN MY FATHER, AND YE IN ME, AND I IN YOU.

He that hath my commandments, and keepeth them, he it is that loveth me: and he that loveth me shall be loved of my Father. and I will love him, and WILL MANIFEST (reveal) myself to him.”

Φλογίζω Σαλπίζω 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

 

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

 

My year in review.. in the rearview

“Now faith is the substance of things hoped for the evidence of things unseen….” we all know that one by heart. And I BELIEVE IT!

I have BELIEVED it and I HAVE BELIEVED since I was saved March 13,2000, but actually I BELIEVED it before I was saved because sometimes life deals us hands with odd stacked so high that there is no way of winning without pulling that mysterious ace out of the hole and often we have forgotten exactly where that ace is hidden. 

Still digging on the New Years Eve card game with my parents last night. They love it and I know some people may think card playing is wrong but if you are not betting on it, it is no different from checkers, or chess, or video games in my opinion.

It was actually a wonderful evening. We always ring it in with my Mom and Dad and last night was exceptional, we watched some great Gospel signing, praying, we ate and then had our game of Spades, watched a Christmas pageant, watched the ball drop, blew ours horns and prayed the New Year in on speaker phone with my Sister. 

But anyway they are the sweetest people and every single New Years Eve is even more of a blessing because we are all together. We still always miss my brother Donnie, we always spent New Years Eve’s together at their house before he passed but death does one thing for a certainty, it reminds us, very painfully of just how precious each one of those moments of that countdown really are, and precious they are.

And we had been blessed to be gifted with a restaurant gift certificate as a family Christmas gift, so Mom taught it would be a good night to use that, so while my family was gone to pick up dinner, me and Dad listened to a Gospel music program and his shoulders have been hurting really bad over the last few weeks, so anyway I just felt like we should pray.

We prayed and just had the sweetest presence of the Lord, the kind of presence that just leaves you with tears of awe in His mercy, grace, and the fact that we as humans are so small and should be so insignificant, BUT He loves us so much that EVERY need we have IS important to Him. To know and be made aware that in the midst of an entire universe of heartache, trouble, and toil, a world full of problems and troubles much greater than our own, HE WILL take the time to hear us and touch us and let us know that HE IS still very much there.

And sometimes so beautiful about sharing tears of joy and awe with my eighty-four year old Dad that still amazes me. Couldn’t stand the man until I was nineteen, to say we had a troubled relationship would have been the understatement of the century. But when I had some problems we began to get close and actually talk to each other and he eventually ended up being the person who prayed with me when I got saved and filled with the Holy Ghost and once that took place I understood completely why we had always had such and argumentative, strained relationship.

God has plans for our lives and Satan knows who to put at each others throats. So maybe the person who always fights and argues with you is the person who you have already been predestined to win to the Lord.

He always said that me and my sister were “like daylight and dark” and I was always dark. I was also okay with him saying that because I knew that it was absolutely the truth. She was sweet and mild and I really was exceptionally vocal with my thoughts and feelings and extremely strong opinions and looking back I truly wish I would have been my supportive toward him rather than resent and rebel.

Funny things happen in life, when we are young and “flying” down that highway thinking we are Sammy Hagar signing, “I can’t drive fifty-five” raging through life at break neck speeds while we don’t even know where we are headed and we are going so fast that whatever image that rear view mirror is capturing becomes just a blur.

But add a little age, a few seasons, and a strong desire to become an old sage one day, things change… as we slow down we can see… we see what that mirror is trying to show us and it shows us life, moments, glimpse, memories, that are so close to passing up by and that we become so painfully aware that a day will come when we will long for those things that were once behind to be in view just once more.

And as the Bible tells us to “FORGET those things that are behind” we know we must stay the course and enjoy every second of the ride we have left.But it does hurt to think of the things we could have done so differently and how that would have affected lives for the better. And this year that is my deal.. to SLOW way down and look carefully at WHAT I am seeing.

As I went outside and I pondered and I thanked the Lord for the wonderful Christmas our family had… with loved ones that we had not seen in a long time and children running, playing and Mom glowing seeing her family together and I thanked him for my great-niece who lives a very busy life quite far away, and as she came to visit just a few days before making my parents day.

I thanked Him for what He has done for my family and my husband’s health and sending blessed help with burdens that few even know about and He has blessed in way that have just blown my mind and in ways and through people whose kindness  has been beyond measure.

And I have had to learn so much about MYSELF and face fears and deal with things I did not THINK I was quite prepared to deal with and it all, even though I FELT surrendered and I felt like I TRUSTED God, I have had learned lessons in trusting Him with the prospect of widowhood, as much as I have had times of wanting to choke my husband over our twenty plus years, I NEVER had to FACE head on the fact that I may lose him.

I had no CLUE what was going on inside of his body because he has always been the “strong” knight in shining armor.

I NEVER had to cope had in hand with my daughter FACING these fears together as she had to deal with the possibility of losing her Dad, while STILL coping with the grief of losing her uncle who was like a second Dad to her. We were side by side for the entire ordeal all the tests, the horror of being met with the dry erase drawing of his blockages, the doctor informer her that this is now in her medical history also, which another later told her that again, and I told him really fast that she is a teenager and they just needed to stop it, and thankfully nothing else was said. She had enough worry without them scaring her about her own health at that particular moment. And we stayed with him and sleep in his hospital room and it was all so surreal, so sudden but we saw the hand of God at every turn.

And all the daily issues that came along for the ride, other family issues, worries, and snares and TRYING to fix a few things my way only to realize some things may never change and some of our inner wounds are so deep that we may NEVER be able to get past certain hurdles.

I am speaking of myself there and the fact that I have just truly had to admit to myself that i went through what I went through over twenty years ago but I don’t know that I will ever feel safe in certain working conditions again and I don’t know that I can ever go “back” to the comfort of never worrying about looking over my shoulder, not because there is now a need to, but simply because we can never undo what has been done.

And I have had to painfully accept that, I love people, I love working in public but I know deep down inside that I may be able to swing it for a few weeks but I am never going to be the same and a work environment of  large windows and public service is not going to be a thing again.

So I have had to learn a whole NEW level of trust and as I thought about all these things and ALL He has done and the ways He has made in absolute wilderness a beautiful thought came to mind… “GREATER WORKS THAN THESE…” and I am so holding to that verse, for me, for you, for this entire world! GREATER…. and TRUST and FAITH are the doors that lead to those greater works.

When we ARE helpless, ARE hopeless, and ARE without remedy as the scripture I clung to, “Who AGAINST hope BELIEVED in hope”…. that is when those doors open to GREATER because we KNOW, we have been TAUGHT that even though we KNOW it, we REALLY see it put to the test, that He is not going to let us fall through those cracks, He is not going to let the world swallow us up, and He will NEVER leave us comfortless.

And most of us have been wounded in life and wounds leave scars, and some things may  NEVER be completely “alright” and make us feel like we will never be able to cope or handle certain things ( and maybe we can’t) and make us question our ability to stand one more second and even feel “flaked out” or as my daughter said when she was little.. about a horse on a cartoon, “not all there, up there”

The past year I WAS a mess, I WAS freaked, I WAS scared, and I WAS fogged over but HE NEVER WAS!

He is NEVER a mess or blindsided by what befalls our human states, HE IS THE I AM THAT IS and like the old Gospel hymn and the words of Paul.. when I am weak HE IS STRONG and for all of my fears He gives faith and for all of my tears, He has given me peace and in that awe IS the Joy of resting in HIS STRENGTH and sometimes in life we just need to be reminded of that!

Thanks for reading and I pray you are having a blessed beginning to a beautiful New Year!

Φλογιζω NBJ 2018

I have loved this song for years and I hope you love it too!

” 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

Reaching the river

“As the hart panteth after the water brooks, So panteth my soul after thee, O God. My soul thirsteth for God, for the living God; When shall I come and appear before God?

My tears have been my meat (food) day and night, While they continually say unto me, Where is thy God? When I remember these things, I pour out my soul in me:

For I had gone with the multitude, I went with them to the house of God, With the voice of joy and praise, with a multitude that kept holyday.  WHY are thou cast down (bowed down), O my soul?  and why are thou disquieted (worried, nervous, anxious) in me? 

Hope thou in God: for I shall yet praise him (give thanks) for the help of his countenance (His presence).

O my God, my soul is cast down within me; therefore I will remember thee from the land of Jordan, and the Hermonites, from the hill Mizar.

Deep calleth unto deep at the noise of thy waterspouts: all thy waves and thy billows are gone over me. Yet the Lord will command his lovingkindness  in the daytime, and in the night his song shall be with me, And my prayer unto the God of my life.

I will say unto God my rock, Why hast thou forgotten me? Why go I mourning because of the oppression of my enemy? 

As with a sword in my bones, mine enemies reproach me; While they say daily unto me, Where is thy God? Why art thou cast down, O my soul? and why art thou disquieted within me?

Hope thou in God: For I will yet praise him, Who is the health of my countenance and my God.” Psalm 42:1-11

Every single one of us experience these seasons in life and sometimes we feel like they will never end. When you feel like you can almost hear your circumstances echoing “Where is your God?”

You know that you have served the Lord, you  have went into His house with joy and praise and yet… you know feel your soul bowed down, nervous, anxious and confused as those “enemies” of your peace still vehemently whisper in your ears… Why  are you going through this?

Where is your peace, your joy, and healing? Now to completely seem to jump topic.. I know there are those who have suffered and suffered with the same afflictions for what seems like forever and often we see a televised service or even go to  a revival service that is so charged that you know healing and deliverance  are there… but kinda like the man at the pool who needed a little help getting in the water… it seems something else happens before you get your turn in the prayer line and before you even got started the service ended.

Want to talk to you about that before we finish our verses. The reason those services are charged is not where the services are held (although I do believe in “Holy” grounds) or even who is preaching them or who is singing.

The charge that ignites, if you wll, is the fact that these services are packed with people who have an expectation.. their faith dial is set to wide open flow and as we know where two or three are gathered  together there He is in the midst, so when you have hundreds gathered believing and expecting of course good things are going to take place. But again it is not person nor place, it is level of faith and belief in the fact that He is there.

But some things I believe happen in “different” settings, such as our personal prayer closets. That secret meeting place that is just between you and Jesus. that place of pouring your heart out, such as the verse above, pouring out your tears, your suffering, your fear and your insecurity and allowing His presence to wash over you and flood you in the billows and waves of His Holy Spirit.

As the verse above. he reassured himself that this fight was not over, that this was not the end! His soul would still rejoice in the Lord and in His presence even though it looked quite hopeless at the moment.

Sometimes we are discouraged, sad, and troubled and we don’t even know why.

I believe this happens sometimes.. not always.. so don’t get me wrong.. but when we feel like that longing and nothing major is going wrong in our lives.. I think it can be a longing to draw closer to the Lord.

But in either case, once he started to remember all the marvelous works that the Lord had already performed, thoughts changed, because perception can be a powerful thing.

He remembered and he had hope. Hope because he knew the Lord would send His love and His goodness to him each day, because God’s mercy toward us is “renewed each day” and he knew that God would send the songs of Zion, the songs of hope and encouragement, faith, and peace to comfort him in even the darkest time.

And he learned the power of praying, and praying “without ceasing” to the God of life, God who would give him new life and restore and repair all that had been broken and lead him to those crystal waters and refresh his parched soul.

In our verses, he asked “why” several times and we do not always understand why, but we must hold to that hope and to hold on to that prayer and pray and pray in the “secret place of the Most High” until we are restored, renewed, and refreshed in the times of trouble and doubt.

Seasons pass, troubles fade, and circumstances change so don’t give up your fight and don’t ever give up on God. Troubles come and troubles go, days get brighter and the sun will once again shine but if you give up in that dry, parched land, you will never feel joy and peace until you reach that river and allow Him to refresh you again.

Psalm 46:1-11 “God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in time of trouble.

Therefore we will not fear, though the earth be removed, and though the mountains be carried into the midst of the sea; Though the waters thereof roar and be troubled, Though the mountains shake with the swelling thereof. Selah 

There is a river, the streams whereof shall make glad the city of God. The holy place of the tabernacles of the most High.

God is in the midst of her; she shall not be moved: God shall help her and that right early. The heathen raged, the kingdoms were moved.

The Lord of hosts is with us; The God of Jacob is our refuge. Selah

Come, behold the works of the Lord, What desolations he hath made in the earth. He maketh wars to cease unto the end of the earth; He breaketh the bow, and cutteth the spear asunder (in half); He burneth the chariots in the fire.

Be still, and know that I am God; I will be exalted among the heathen, I will be exalted in the earth.

The Lord of hosts is with us; The God of Jacob is our refuge.”

Hope that jogged your memory!

Run into your prayer closet and don’t come out until you have been drenched!

He does not need an audience, or a preacher, or the congregation to touch and heal you and often the most earth-shaking blessing come completely one on one, you just have to believe that He does hear you and believe that He will answer you and expect Him to rock your world!

Run, walk, or if you have to crawl but reach that river and let nothing hold you back!

Φλογίζω Σαλπιζω NBJ 2017  REVISITED 07/31/2021 Praying it will be an encouragement TODAY!

 

“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  & 01/21/2022

 

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

 

“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