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Inspiration/Enlightenment

God’s Power Will Get Through: Part 2

Photo by Roger Coles on YouVersion.

This is the Word of the Lord for 2021 and beyond: Do not be sensuous in your faith, sensual in your walk with Me! You serve me when you feel like it – when it is convenient for you! You love me when you feel me – when my presence affirms you! When you feel my presence you are happy and joyful, and I rejoice! However, when you do not feel my presence you shrivel up, doubt, and crumble, and I sigh! You wilt under pressure and crumble under the powers of difficulty and challenge! Is it a light thing to dishonor me by crumbling to powers inferior to me? My presence, glory, and love abides even when you do not feel me. Do not cause me to sigh at the hands of your superficial, convenient, self-serving love! Do not tempt me and cause me to serve in your fair-weather faith! If you were gifted my Spirit you were gifted Me – my promise, my seed, my first-begotten Son! To this child of mine will I look and be delighted: those who are confident in my Word, in my presence, and in my love! I will not leave or forsake. If you persist through, my power will get through!

Yesterday I wrote about persistent difficulty, how irritating it can be, and how we must have a controlled response to the irritancy. This morning I was listening to the late, renowned, reformed theologian R.C. Sproul. His lesson was on encountering God, which was so good I will need to expound on it in another post. However, during the lesson he told an anecdote, and it immediately struck me because it was exactly what the Lord had me write on yesterday! He told about a time he was asked to fill in at a church one Sunday on behalf of the pastor who was seriously ill in the hospital. He was asked to speak and administer communion, so he buckled down and studied hard to give the congregation a great message in the light of communion and their leader being sick unto death.

The message did not go as he felt, thought, or hoped. For whatever reason, he did not have his usual flair or energy. He did not feel like preaching and described his sermon as “flat.” In his many years of preaching, he recounted this event as one of the few moments in his life and ministry where he had an overwhelming feeling of the lack of the presence of God! When he was done preaching, he said he wanted to crawl into a hole and never come out, feeling like he let God down, the pastor, and his congregation! He went to the back of the church to customarily shake hands with the congregation members as they were leaving when the most amazing thing happened. Every person who shook his hand had a glazed expression on their face, like zombies who had seen a ghost! One by one they shook his hand firmly, thanking him for a message touched with the breath of God! Incredibly, everyone in that church felt the presence of God except him. In that moment and from that day forward, he vowed to never be a sensuous Christian – someone who needs to feel God to know He is there. If you need to feel Him you are influenced by your feelings, not by His Spirit. The members of the church did not encounter a ghost that day, leaving their faces glazed over. They encountered the Holy Ghost, the Father of spirits, the glory and power of a holy God. Get out your senses. Get out your feelings. Stay out your flesh. To remain in truth is to remain in the Spirit, for only there can we please God (Rom. 8:8). In Jesus name.

Categories
Inspiration/Enlightenment

God’s Power Will Get Through

Photo by YouVersion.

The power of God always gets through. Yesterday morning, I joined a beloved brother of mine on Facebook Live. He is the pastor of a local church and he asked me to pray before he preached, specifically for requests of members of the congregation. I gladly said yes, always ready and thankful for an opportunity to serve and glorify Daddy God. When I joined him on the call, there was some kind of technical difficulty where it was a delay. (This was due to multiple devices being opened at one time in the same app). While we were waiting a few moments for more people to tune in, I told him about it and he heard it for a moment on his end. As we continued on we thought the problem was fixed. It turned out it was fixed on his end but not on mine! Personally, I was a little annoyed by the delay, feeling like it would “affect” me while I was praying and take me out of my “zone.” Finally, I settled it in my mind – although this difficulty will persist I am going to glorify God and persist in prayer anyway!

Fast-forward to this morning. I am checking my phone looking at some unread notifications. Another brother of mine who was on the live yesterday had reached out congratulating me on the prayer. He said it was an “awesome” prayer and that he felt the Spirit! Glory to be to God for that, because when I prayed yesterday I did not “feel” like it was an awesome prayer. As a matter of fact, I mentioned to my wife afterwards how it was difficult to focus because of the delayed reaction. However, after stating that fact I also said God will be glorified anyway, and anyone who listened to the prayer would be blessed in some form or fashion. You see, our thoughts and words have power, and when we speak blessings instead of doubt ultimately the power of God will get through!

Beloved, as I was reflecting on this event the Lord showed me something. Essentially, this serves as a microcosm of the totality of our walk with God! Last year, there were persistent challenges and difficulty for all of us to varying degrees due to the pandemic, racial tensions, and other things. However, we must not allow the challenges of last year, this year, or future years, persistent as they may be, to affect us and take us out of our zone – the presence and power of God! We must settle it in our minds and resolve it in our hearts to persist in the things pertaining to God – His Spirit, ways, words, and will – amidst difficulty. Despite its persistent presence, let us love and serve God and people with a pure heart fervently. Why? Because when we persist in obeying Him in faith and love we keep open an atmosphere for His Spirit, power, love, and glory to shine through – elevating Him and crushing the power of difficulty!

Difficulty is an irritant, not a deterrent. Allow the energies of irritation to push you into the energy of God, not deter you from Him. The further away you get from the energy of God, the more powerful the energy of irritation gets, resulting in things going from bad to worse. Do not be the cause of that. Rather, be a conduit of the grace of God in the midst of it and watch Him work! The power of difficulty – technical or otherwise – is not greater than the power of God, and although this maybe known intellectually it is not always modeled experientially. I was annoyed, but I persisted, and as a result somebody was blessed by the touch of God. The power of God always gets, cuts, and shines through the fluff of life. In Jesus name.

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The Man Who Felt Empty

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Awhile ago I was watching an episode of Forensic Files. This particular episode documented a story of a man who was a serial arsonist/killer. As one would expect, my initial thought upon watching and listening to the story was how on earth could a human being do these things to other human beings. As I continued watching to the end, they interviewed this man from prison asking him what the motive was behind his heinous crimes. What he said struck me, not because I did not know or understand what he said, but with newfound truth which was revealed to me a short time before, my mind went to how these evil, heinous acts could have been prevented. His words struck me because, while absolutely never justifying his acts, I felt and understood his pain. He said, “I do not know why I did what I did. I cannot explain it, other than to say I felt empty. I felt empty inside.” Wow. I knew exactly what he was talking about.

There is a reason for everything. I find it surprising and disturbing how more often than not people cannot or do not trace their choices, character, morality, etc., to an identifiable root cause or causes. Towards the end of the segment on the serial arsonist, they reported on his past, detailing his childhood upbringing and family life. Slowly, this blurry picture of an evil man began to come into the clear view of a wounded boy. His parents, to be blunt, were downright weird. His father, while professing to be an avid Christian and minister, was extremely controlling, ruling the family with an iron fist. He was abusive and cold towards the boy, never showing much of a desire or interest to spend time, build a relationship with him. This was staggering to me! His mother protected and coddled him, seemingly from her abusive husband, but although this was understandable, it could not undo the damage done or fill the voids of pain and hurt left by his domineering and distant father. My heart ached in agony, imagining and wondering if one person, just one, seen, understood, and took steps to help him.

I fully understand all people will not be saved. In looking at the life of Jesus, who is the revelation of Truth, Love, (and more!) I find it amazing the different responses He received from different people. Some responded in faith, praise, and adoration, while some responded in offense, disdain, and hate. Fascinating! Therefore, we can surmise not everybody will respond positively to real, genuine Love. The reason being is because Love is also kin with Truth and Light, and we all know the Truth hurts and the Light reveals what we would rather keep hidden. You either run to or run from. However, we can also say whether people positively respond or not, everyone needs to be shown God/True Love. In this instance, I am not so sure the wounded boy who turned into a serial arsonist was shown Who he needed most. Who we all need most.

It is possible someone did try to help him and he rejected. Surely that happens. I do not truly know. What I do know is the desire to inflict pain and hurt on someone else because you felt “empty” is a direct reflection of the heart of a person who did not, could not receive Love. Hurt people hurt people. May we all consider and remember the Love of God, the blood of Jesus, and the presence of His person is the only Way to fill this emptiness inside – these holes in our souls. In Jesus name.

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Did You Pray Today?

We tend to forget how short life can be. Some of us get so busy and bogged down with the issues of life – work, bills, kids, appointments, etc., we often overlook what’s most important. A few years ago I was on a chase – a chase for fulfillment, accomplishment, money, success, and so on. I fell flat on my face trying to chase these things, and quite honestly, I am blessed to have survived my fall. The pursuit of these things aren’t necessarily wrong, but you can go about it the wrong way, as I did, sacrificing what you need for what you want. I got so caught up in the chase, the hustle, the grind, I lost track of my own self and the simple, yet profound things that make for a good life.

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My mother recently passed away and I’m coping with her death in my own way. I was blessed to talk to her a few days before she died, and as we often did we had a fun, yet serious conversation. During the conversation she asked me a question which is now seared on my conscience. “Did you pray today?” she asked, the question seemingly coming out of nowhere. “What?” I replied, unsure of what she said at first. “Did you talk to God today?” She asked more forcefully, making sure I heard her. “Yea Mom that’s an everyday thing for me,” I replied. “Ok, well that’s good. I’m going to need you to keep doing that,” she said. She would die a few days later, leaving me in remembrance and inspired by this simple act we all should do every day. My mother was strong. She fought and battled for a long time with different things. Sometimes she won and sometimes she lost, but she was always willing to fight and pray. I believe she talked to God a lot. She went through enough to do so.

I say again we tend to forget how short life can be. As a matter of fact the Bible says life is but a vapor. Think about when you’re cooking or boiling something and you see that vapor of smoke and then it’s gone. That’s your life here on earth. Don’t let your present situations and circumstances get you so busy you neglect the basics, and the BASIS of life itself. Being thankful for the air you breathe and being grateful for what you already have. Loving God and people. Cherishing and spending time with the ones you love. These are some of the basics. Treasure life, not only the treasures of life – what you can get out of it. We are supposed to make the most of our lives while we here, but that constitutes to more than just being busy and chasing things which will never fulfill you. I think that’s profound. So, in all your getting get understanding – know what life is and what it’s really about. Did you pray today?