Have you ever thought of how much a tree has to endure... harsh weather, disease, insects, woodpeckers, lightening strikes, pruning, just to name a few. Some, eventually even get cut down in the prime of their lives. Now, it may seem like I am speaking of trees as if they were some kind of living beings. Of course, we know they are not "beings" but they do contain life. They breathe and they bleed (lose their sap). A few years ago, I had the privilege of working in the forest on brush cutting contracts. I lived in a trailer and didn't leave very often to go to town. As I worked, I would "preach to the trees" and pray and worship God. I called it preaching but actually I would just speak the Word of God out loud and proclaim to the atmosphere what the Lord Jesus was speaking to my heart. Since we couldn't make it to church most of the time, I would just have my own time with the Lord daily while working. I actually loved the experience. I worked a lot with trees. I would trim them, pull some smaller ones that had been cut by the brush cutter off the sides of the road. Sometimes I would shoot off any "widow makers" (hanging limbs) with my 12 gauge shotgun. I got to where I could identify various species. Those days are past and now I have the privilege of living full time in the woods. Before our recent snow storm hit, I was taking my usual walk through our forest and my attention was drawn to one of the larger trees. Several feet up, I noticed a significant area of disease and weeping. There were many branches above that were dead. I assumed the whole tree was dead because of the extent of the disease. As I tilted my head to look upward, I saw that closer to the top, quite a few live branches were visible. It was obvious this tree had some years left to live and lift it's branches toward the heavens. The Holy Spirit began to speak to my heart regarding the lives of people. We, like that tree, have the capability to maintain life even after we have been ravaged by disease. I am mostly referring to the disease of sin which has affected every one of us. "For all have sinned and fallen short of the Glory of God." Romans 3:23. As with this tree, the results of past sins (disease) seem to be more evident in some lives as we endeavor to stand strong among the seemingly healthy ones. We know that as Believers in Christ and recipients of His salvation by grace through faith, we still fall short at times and have I John 1:9 as a promise: "If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and cleanse us from all unrighteousness." The Bible says in Psalm 150 to let everything that has breath praise the Lord. I believe he even designed the trees to lift their branches in praise toward their Creator! In Isaiah, "..the trees of the field shall clap their hands". In that, we see the creation rejoicing in the Salvation of mankind. The whole creation became subject to disease, deterioration and death because of the Sin of mankind. Now it awaits the final release to the Hope of the Sons and Daughters of God that comes through Faith in Jesus Christ. "For the creation was subjected to futility, not willingly, but because of him who subjected it, in hope that the creation itself will be set free from its bondage to corruption and obtain the freedom of the glory of the children of God": Romans 8:20 & 21. There is coming a New Heaven and a New Earth we are told in the Bible. There will be no more sin, sickness, disease, harsh weather, lightening, earthquakes, aging, death or destruction. We wait for that Hope of Redemption. If we could see it, it would no longer be hope. We wait patiently knowing the whole creation waits with us. So, I preach to the trees. Not that they are capable of receiving the same glory as the Children of the Living God, but I do so to proclaim to the visible and invisible realms that the Gates of Hell shall not prevail against the Truth that JESUS CHRIST IS THE SON OF THE LIVING GOD and salvation can only be found through Faith in Him! We will overcome by that Testimony and in that, the whole creation will be set free from its suffering. My prayer continues daily for God to strengthen his people and give them the ability to endure until the end. Not only to endure, but to do so with joy as Jesus did for all of us: "Fix your eyes on Jesus, the author and perfecter of your faith who for the joy set before him endured the cross, scorning its shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God." Jesus's goal was to bring many sons to Glory and we can be the strength and encouragement for many to follow. So, I lift my eyes and voice toward the tree tops and sing praises to the Most High God for the Hope of a Glorious Future with Him for Eternity! Stand tall with me in spite of any effect that sin might have had on your life in the past and let us proclaim liberty to the captives because Christ has set us free... free from guilt, shame and condemnation! Look up in anticipation of an incorruptible future in store for those who Believe and Receive! Grace and Peace be multiplied to you this day!
Saturday, October 29, 2016
The other day I was watching an old episode of The Andy Griffith Show. Opie, Andy's son, was appointed the Keeper of the Flame in this secret club of which he was a part. The only problem was that Opie was not supposed to play with matches. Aunt Bee found the cigar box in his room that contained the sacred "flame" instruments which were, in fact, a candle and some matches. Having been sworn to secrecy by the higher ups of the club, he could not explain to his father why he had these objects in his room even though he was to take the blame for a neighbor's barn burning down as a result of false accusations. When we become Born Again and receive the Holy Spirit and beyond that, become "baptized" in the Holy Spirit, we, in a real sense become Keepers of the Flame. John the Baptist told his Disciples in Matthew Chapter three, verse eleven, that Jesus would baptize with the Holy Ghost (Spirit) and with FIRE. I will never forget the day nor the hour when I received that fire! It is available to all who call upon the name of the Lord. Once we receive that gift, that fire, we have a sacred responsibility to keep it or another word is guard it. Ephesians Chapter five, verse eighteen tells us not to get drunk with wine because it will ruin our life but to be filled with the Spirit. The Greek translation of that verse gives the meaning that we are to "be being filled." Receiving that "fire" is not a one time experience. As I watch my husband build a beautiful fire in our woodstove, the illustration becomes quite clear. The initial fire, once burning full, brings such beauty and warmth to our home. As the flue is left open wide, dangerous gases are allowed to escape as fresh oxygen is brought in to keep the fire burning. If the flue is shut down completely and tightly enough, the fire will eventually go out. I see the flue as relating to my heart. If I shut down my heart and no longer allow the breath of God to breathe into me, the fire of His Spirit will eventually burn out. Hebrews Chapter thirteen, verse twelve tells us (Brothers and Sisters) to be careful not to have a sinful, unbelieving heart and fall away from God. It doesn't happen all at once. Those coals can keep smoldering for quite sometime, but without oxygen (breath) it will soon dissipate. My daughter, Kim and I were talking earlier today about how interesting it is that the internet these days has so many sites that would bring doubt to things a person has believed for years. She reminded me of Eve in the Garden of Eden who listened to the Serpent (Satan) who in essence asked her to believe God was a liar by saying, "Did God really say?" Just like the false teachers written about in the Apostle Peter's writings when they said.... "Where is this promise of his coming you are talking about?" Second Peter Chapter three, verse nine, New Living Translation: "The Lord isn't really being slow about his promise, as some people think. No, he is being patient for your sake. He does not want anyone to be destroyed, but wants everyone to repent." There is a reason, other than for ourselves that we need to Guard the Flame. Have you ever wanted to walk into a dark room and have it light up just because of your presence? Well, that is, as a fact, what happens in the Spiritual Realm when you are filled with the Holy Spirit through a life giving, God breathing, experience. You walk into the darkness of this world and the kingdom of this world and Satan and the flame that you carry illuminates and exposes EVERYTHING! It isn't you, lest you boast, but the Spirit of the Living God who raised Christ from the Dead and Quickens our mortal bodies. We are commanded in Ephesians Chapter five, verse eleven: "Have nothing to do with the fruitless deeds of darkness, but rather EXPOSE them." That is the power of the Keeper of the Flame! We are all called to Keep the Flame Burning Bright! How else can others see their way to enter the Kingdom of God and His Dear Son, Jesus Christ! As my Daughter and I discussed, the END is coming soon! Jesus IS coming back to take His Believers Home. "For God so loved the world that He gave His only Begotten Son (Jesus) that whoever believes (adheres to, trust in, relies on) will not perish but have everlasting life. We can either fear the light of exposure or welcome the light of life.
Wednesday, September 7, 2016
Early this morning, I had one of the most vivid dreams I have had in a long time. It wasn’t necessarily a nightmare but was definitely unsettling. As in a lot of dreams, upon wakening, you can relate some of the incidences to real life experiences; some you recently went through or were facing in the future. Somehow, they were present in your mind. You tell yourself that is the reason for the dream. Or, perhaps it was something you ate before you went to bed that night. Whatever the reason, you did in fact have the dream. In mine, I found myself in a dark, musty environment. I was surrounded by strangers, some of them evil. There were rats and everything was wet. It was an old city, mostly brick with dim lighting in every building I entered. I knew I had a doctor’s appointment mid morning. It was still dark outside and I needed to get home. I was carrying my little dog, Rusty because I didn’t have his leash and harness. For some reason my cell phone would not work after turning it off and back on again. I needed to call Albert, my husband because something horrible was happening to me. I couldn’t remember my address or where my street was located or what street I lived on. I couldn’t remember Albert’s number. Panic began to set in. I tried to keep my mind under control. I asked a man to help but soon realized his intentions would not be such. As I walked up dark, muddy streets searching through my mind for answers, I dropped Rusty. He started to drink from the water that was running through the street. As I looked down I saw the dead rats floating in the water and grabbed him up into my arms. I was so afraid and there was no way out. I had completely lost all sense of direction and even if I had had it, I would not have known how to follow it. My mind was blank to anything that would help me. At my most desperate moment, a ray of hope… some numbers began to enter my psyche. It was our home phone number. Then I realized that Albert was not at home. I searched my memory for his cell number. Again, the nothingness returned. There I remained, groping around in the darkness for any sign of help. There was none. And then I awoke. I wish I could have told you that my dream had a happy ending, but it didn’t. Earlier that morning I had been interceding for people who have rejected Jesus as their Savior. I was meditating on the second Greatest Commandment in the Bible which is to “love your neighbor as yourself”. As I was awakened from my dream, I was reminded of the Rich Man and Lazarus that Jesus spoke of in Luke Chapter 16.The Rich Man had died and was in a place of forever torment. When he begged to have Lazarus even to cool the tip of his tongue with water from the heat of the flames, Father Abraham told him in essence, it is impossible. Lazarus is in comfort from his suffering and you are in torment. See, both men had died. One had received all he had desired in “this life” but rejected God. The other was poor in “this life” but had walked with the Lord. After the Rich Man had begged and begged to no avail, he pleaded with the Father of our Faith, Abraham, to send Lazarus to his five brothers and WARN them so that they would not enter this place of torment. Abraham told him basically speaking, that his brothers had been taught the truth from the beginning but did not believe so they were not going to believe even if a dead man came to them. How sad! How tragic! My dream has given me a chilling feel of what is in store for those who reject the Cross of Christ! The Cross has been spoken of through that Crimson Thread through the entire Old and New Testament and spoken through the Servants of God for generation upon generation and yet there are those who reject the Faith. Hebrews 3:12&13 tells us: “Take care, brothers (family of God), lest there be in any of you an evil, unbelieving heart, leading you to fall away from the living God. But exhort one another every day, as long as it is called “today” that none of you may be hardened by the deceitfulness of sin.” None of us should take pride and think we will stand. Even Jesus, when he was walking as a man knew his weakness. Hebrews 5:7, “In the days of his flesh, Jesus offered up prayers and supplications, with loud cries and tears, to him who was able to save him from death, and he was heard because of his REVERENCE.” We are to humble ourselves before God and REVERENCE HIM above ALL. “Love the Lord your God with ALL your HEART, SOUL, MIND AND STRENGTH and LOVE YOUR NEIGHBOR AS YOURSELF.” Christ’s love COMPELLS me to write this to you all as a warning and as a plea to warn others. Jesus IS coming soon. What will be our HEART condition when he shows up? “But you, beloved, building yourselves up in your most holy faith and praying in the Holy Spirit, keep (stay, remain, abide stand firm) yourselves in the LOVE of GOD, waiting for the mercy of our Lord Jesus Christ that leads to ETERNAL LIFE.” Jude 25:20&21. I love you all with the Love of the Lord and write to you as the Holy Spirit leads to the Glory of God.
Thursday, August 4, 2016
Never, never, never give up! It isn't necessary. It isn't productive. It isn't life-giving. It doesn't bring about the desired end which is Victory over our enemy! Everywhere we look in the Word of God, the Bible, we see that everything points toward winning. We are "more than conquerors"! (Romans 8:37) What does it mean to be "more" than a conqueror? Native Americans, also known as First Nations People, have a saying. It is called "counting coup". Counting coup is when you win prestige against an enemy through acts of bravery. It is one thing to fight a battle and win. It is another thing to take it a step further as opportunity affords. In the Spiritual Battle, we have the privilege and the power and the permission to take it that extra step. Counting coup included such things as touching an enemy warrior with a hand, bow or coup stick and escaping unharmed. It could also involve stealing the enemies’ horses or weapons. The element required for counting coup was the risking of your life. In our battle as Children of God against our adversary, the Devil, there is no risk of life.
1 Samuel 17:47 tells us that "The Battle is the Lord's" if you read the end of the Book... The Book of Revelation, we see that the Battle is already won and our enemy is defeated and on his way to the Lake of Fire! The words to a song we sing at the Drum are: "Keep on Counting Coup". Our battle is daily and it is designed to be daily victory. The only way that is obtained is through the ability given to us by our Heavenly Father. Another thing to consider is that we don’t battle alone. If you look to your right or to your left, you see that your “brothers and sisters” are fighting the same fight right along with you. The Book of I Peter, chapter 5, verse 9 tells us to resist the enemy and stand firm in the Faith. We need to lock arms and march forward, fearlessly, knowing and walking as if we believe the battle has been won! Do you believe it today? I do! There is nothing man or the devil can do to me to steal my Faith unless I allow it to happen. I am determined not to let my fellow Believers down my giving up the fight. “No way, shape or form”, as the saying goes. It is hard enough to walk through this world without becoming discouraged and even depressed at what we see happening. We shake our heads with disbelief at what has become of things that once brought us a sense of peace and security. “It has always been and it always will be”… NOT! Nothing is as it was and it never will be again… because there is a bigger purpose on the horizon! Christ is coming back! Court is about over…. Judgment is coming. That’s no “doom and gloom” for those of us who are waiting, watching. We have been preparing and are preparing to stand “unashamed before him at his coming”, 1 John 2:28&29. Not by our own works or efforts are we unashamed and unafraid, but because of the precious blood of the Lamb who was slain on the Cross, Jesus Christ. “Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ and you shall be saved,” Acts 16:31 and then walk in obedience to his commandments which I have written about many times: “Love the Lord your God with all your heart, soul, mind and strength and love your neighbor as yourself.” No greater commandments. So, the way we, as Believers “count coup” is to add that extra blow of LOVE even to our enemies… Matthew 5:44. The biggest act of “counting coup” is to have another person become a Believer because of us! What a blow to the enemy of our soul, the devil, Satan himself when even our earthly enemies bow their knee and accept Jesus as their Lord and Savior. Let’s begin “Counting Toward Victory” with our own Family members and move the circle outward! To God Be the Glory!
Thursday, July 14, 2016
"See what great love the Father has lavished on us, that we should be called Children of God! And that is what we are! The reason the world does not know us is that it did not know him." 1 John 3:1. I want to talk to you about the Love of our Lord, Jesus... Yahweh... the Great I AM. Lavish means to: bestow something in generous or extravagant quantities upon; to cover something thickly or liberally with. The above scripture tells us that God HAS lavished his love on us. It tells us that we are not only called his children, we ARE his children, children in every way! If you are a Believer and you trust in and rely upon the Lord Jesus Christ as your Savior and the Son of God, then you have the right and actually have become the sons and daughters of God according to John 1:12. If you do not believe, adhere to, rely upon, accept the sacrifice of the only begotten Son of God then you fall into the category of "the world". It is just as simple as that. The Love of God is all inclusive of Goodness because God is Good! There is a Native American word for Love. It is "khenoronkhwa". It also means "medicine" in Mohawk. When you are assured in you spirit by God's Holy Spirit that you are a child of God, you can speak the name, Yahweh or I AM without fear because He is your Father and you are His Child and the name is not too sacred to be spoken from your lips. It is a LOVE relationship. Along with that relationship comes the "lavishing" of all things good upon you. You understand that "love" and "medicine" go together because the right medicine is always good and brings healing and wholeness. When you come out of the world and the world's mentality, you understand that nothing can satisfy except the Father's Love. Nothing can meet your needs and give you what your heart desires except the Father's Love. The Government's of the nations of the world cannot satisfy nor should they bring fear into your heart because the lavished love of the Lord is covering you. This is not a thin, see-through film of love, this is a thick, unyielding love that nothing can remove from you or separate you from! There is a promise in the Book of Joel, chapter 2, verse 25 that has been being fulfilled in my life. Part of God's love includes discipline. He disciplines because his love would not be complete without that aspect. Sin and the enemy, Satan, cause so many things to be stolen from us. Not only our sin, but the sins of others affect our lives. Once discipline is complete and we receive it hopefully with joy, he restores. He is restoring even the little, seemingly insignificant things to my life. These are personal things that apply just to me because he is a personal, one on one, Father. How he is big enough and omnipresent is far too much for my finite mind to comprehend, I believe and have FAITH and have physical proof as well that he loves me like his child and I am, according to 1 John 3:1, HIS CHILD! So, I cry out to those of the world who do not know him and don't "know" me (understand that I am a child of God), to receive the "Sonship" he made available through his death on the Cross. He desires to be Father now and throughout eternity and does not want anyone separated from him and his Lavishing Love. "The Lord is not slow in keeping his promise (to return), as some understand slowness. Instead he is patient with you, not wanting anyone to perish, but everyone to come to repentance." 2 Peter 3:9. Those of you who have received the Father's Love through the Lord Jesus, the Christ, the Messiah, allow him, today, to lavish his love upon you and don't let any doubt or fear turn your face away from His! He desires to give good gifts to his children! Blessings to all who read this post!
Monday, June 27, 2016
It is pretty crazy when you call your internet service from Oregon and the customer service representative is in the Philippines. As I was conversing with the rep, I started thinking about what a small world it seems to be at times. I am not, of course, talking about the size of the earth compared to the known universe. I am talking about how circumstances seem to connect in ways that can appear to be almost mystical. The truth of the matter is that in the enormous, infinite mind and hands of God, our Creator, the earth/world is contained. "The earth is the Lord's and the fullness thereof; the world and they that dwell therein." Psalm 24:1. It is, in fact, divinely contained. It exists between the borders that God himself allows and is protected within those borders from any surprise attacks. "I (wisdom or Jesus) was there when he (God the Creator) set the limits of the sea so that they would not spread beyond their boundaries, and when he marked off the earth's foundations..." Proverbs 8:29. These are, for the world, extremely troubling times. I don't care who tells you differently. Unless they are living in a self inclusive bubble, everyone who is of an accountable age with a somewhat sound mind is concerned with the state of the world and the universe for that matter. As for me, I take these "small world" incidences as a continual reminder that someone much greater and much more capable and with ultimate authority is in charge and in control of EVERYTHING! However, I am also of the belief, according to my Faith in the Word of God, the Bible, that I have the privilege of giving input into the whole scope of things. Because of the fact I am a Born Again Child of God through the atoning Blood of Jesus Christ and redeemed for Eternity I can take part in the "plan" through the Power of the Holy Spirit in me and Prayer. "If my people (the Church of which Jesus is the Head) who are called by my name (the Name above all other Names containing all power and authority) will humble themselves (admit they don't have all the answers and are weak without his power) and pray (earnestly and fervently) and seek my face (hunger and thirst for his affirmation not that of man) and turn from their wicked ways (repent of taking things into your own hands and rejecting God's ways), then will I hear from Heaven and forgive their sin and heal their land." 2 Chronicles 7:14. The promise is there. But.... and I say but because there will come a time when all our efforts and all our prayers and all our longings will be set aside for the FINAL outcome of the things of this earth to play out. It will be the final "home run", the final "carrying of the baton" over the finish line, the last day of the "small world" existence. According to 2 Peter 3:10 "The day of the Lord will come like a thief (no one knows exactly when) and then the heavens will pass away with a roar, and the heavenly bodies will be burned up and dissolved, and the earth and the works that are done on it will be exposed." How shall we now live? "For the Lord himself will descend from heaven with a cry of command, with the voice of an archangel, and with the sound of the trumpet of God. And the dead in Christ will rise first. Then we who are alive, who are left, will be caught up together with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air and so we will always be with the Lord." 1 Thessalonians 4:16 & 17. I personally am encouraged and would encourage you, my Readers, be you friends, family, acquaintances or distant bloggers to be encouraged because all you have to do is believe, trust, rest and at the same time take hold of the only one, Jesus Christ who has made it all possible to be transported off this "small world" and into the Heavenly Home that awaits us for he went to "Prepare a place for us and will come back to get us and take us to be with him" John 14. Believe trust in, rely on the Lord Jesus Christ and you shall be saved." He does exist and he is going to show up on the scene before we know it. I remember the childhood game of tag..."READY OR NOT, HERE I COME!"
Friday, February 19, 2016
Genesis 1:1: "In the Beginning, God created the Heavens and the Earth." This is not a legend, a myth, a bedtime story or a lie. When you look at this picture and observe the intricacies of the flower, it is living proof that a live handcrafter was involved. Yes, to believe this is called Faith. I guess anyone can put faith in anything. The only difference between faith with an upper case "F" and faith with a lower case "f" is that the former is a LIVING FAITH because it is faith set on a LIVING GOD.
I find my heart hurting when humans, who are the most important part of "God created", not believing from whence they came. Every where we look we can see the handiwork of our God and Creator. We would have to be blind to not see and stand in awe at the magnificence. Yet, there are those countless numbers who deny the very existence of the one who is responsible for existence. Those are the ones who put their faith in the vastness of the Universe. They give thanks to the unfathomable, unimaginable, infinite, unexplainable, with no end in site, for the good things that happen in their lives. They pray to the Creation and not to the Creator. They are those who make a mockery of what God has done by giving credit to something that is totally incapable of showing any kind of love, compassion, mercy or forgiveness. Because they have no particular "deity" they have no reason to be accountable for sin in their lives. They tolerate every religion that exists and every lifestyle that exists and call it "good". On the sixth day of creation after God had created everything that exists including mankind, he said, "It is good!" God is good and everything he does is good and works everything out for good for those who have FAITH in Him! Some humans are coming full circle back to the Garden of Eden and listening to the serpent saying as he did to Eve, "Did God really say?". Because of Adam and Eve listening to and falling for the lies, all mankind had to suffer the consequences. Therefore, the Living God, Creator of Everything, did what the massive element of his creation, the Universe, could never do. He made atonement for our sins by becoming a man and dying on the Cross and being buried and rising from the grave to be the One and Only Way to live forever in Heaven and experience eternal LOVE. All who reject that Way, and ignore the Truth are still going to live forever but because of their refusal to acknowledge their need and the gift of eternal life, they will experience eternal separation from the One who cries out from the rising of the sun to it's setting for all to come. I do not hear a voice calling from the Universe, although if you search to the center, science itself will show you... There is a Cross! For those of you who know the way, I appeal to you: Pray for those who don't know the way to find it. For those of you who have known the way, I appeal to you: Come back before you fall into such deep deception that you don't even cry out to the One who is the Way, the Truth and the Life, Jesus, the Christ, the Son of the Living God. For those of you who have never known the way, I appeal to you: The Bible says, "Taste and see that the Lord is Good." One taste and you will begin to hunger and thirst for what the Creation can never give to you: Love, Acceptance and Forgiveness. Turn from the road that leads to death and choose the road of Life.