Broken Wings and Battered Hearts

 “Broken Wings and Battered Hearts.” I heard this phrase, audibly, one night as I slept.  It came without dream or explanation.  Sans music, this phrase could be lifted right out of a Merle Haggard tune. Perhaps the Lord was up late writing twangy County Western songs and I just caught the overflow on the chorus!  Just the one phrase, acknowledging brokenness and heartbreak.  Everyone of us knows a verse or two of that song, don’t we?

Feverseason posts in past weeks have laid out some important dreams that I, and other Christians, have received.  Occasionally, I wonder if readers believe I make stuff up, or attempt in some dramatic way, to be ultra-spiritual.  ” Look over here,  I’m so special because the Lord is sending me special messages.”  Nothing could be further from the truth.  As with all spiritual gifts they have nothing to do with us. Each instance is unbelievably humbling to me.  Yet, if we learn to gracefully two-step to this supernatural country song, in tandem with one another’s spiritual gifts, the “overcoming church” not only catches that heavenly rhythm, but also joyfully receives an operational plan from our King.

For example, this random phrase. Broken Wings and Battered Hearts:  Though it’s an extremely relatable, potential lyric; what does this snippet of Spirit-born message really trying to teach ?

Broken wings: like those of a bird who may have hit a window or been blown out of their nest too soon, keep us from flying.  Without functional, strong wings any bird is destined to flop on the ground.  This is not their natural habitat.  While grounded, they are unable to gain altitude and unable to have the advantage of the higher vantage point.

As believer’s in Jesus we are intended to fly. It is the Holy Spirit and only the Holy Spirit who provides the uplift, the supernatural vision or hearing necessary to operate in that realm.  We ought not be accepting as” normal” the chains which shackle us to problems, sin or traditional doctrine thus keeping us from our intended Royal Destiny.

We reside in a crazy, mixed up world and stuff happens.  Folks betray us, children suffer, life disappoints us, accidents happen and old age sucks. If we marry this sad fact to “traditional” church doctrine which has grown resistant and highly suspicious of any operational gifts of the Holy Spirit we then concoct a recipe for perpetually broken wings!  Assuredly, we may be saved but we have grounded ourselves and our wings are clipped.

Without reliance on Holy Spirit sourced, “inside” knowledge Christians are operating blind, without benefit of radar, navigation or instruments; smashing into life or  blowing off course in a storm. (Is. 40:29-31) They may still be breathing, maybe sitting in church each week– but their faith wings have been crushed by circumstance .  A complacent, deceived, lukewarm church has left broken Believer’s earthbound, unable to fly-believing a lie that they shouldn’t fly- and powerless to fulfil their destiny. ( Rev. 3:14-22)

Earthbound is not where eagles or hummingbirds are intended to linger. Birds sidelined with wounded wings not only have restricted vision, they will be an unbelievably easy target for hungry prey.

Some Christians are blissfully ignorant on the topic, others wary or distrustful of loss of control. Some folks labor under the lie that any gifts (beyond pastoring or teaching) are unnecessary since the completion of the canon of scripture.  However, this IS the purpose of His gifts.  It is these precious, priceless gifts which are to keep the beautiful body of Christ, healthy, unbroken and soaring.  When we inevitably hit a wall these gifts will supernaturally identify the root, fix the problem and keep us moving and operational till the harvest is done (Ephesians 4).  This is why and how we can rejoice in any circumstance! (Phil. 4:4)

The signs, wonders and miracles we see happening in scripture were not JUST to endorse Jesus as Messiah. They give a glimpse of a Loving God, who intended to keep exhibiting His Amazing heart along with the saving message of Jesus to the unsaved world.  Consequences of seeing such wonders was/is to instill faith in the viewer. “If that kid could be raised from the dead, or grow new eyes- then surely I can be healed of  anything!!”  Yahoo!

By the same token, if Peter or Paul healed broken wings-the Apostle’s faith was also buoyed each time they saw soaring results.  Not because THEY were powerful–but because the King of Kings was making himself known through their hands, through their voices, through their feet as they carried the gospel from town to town.

It is past time for the Body of Christ to step completely into agreement with all the Bible says about this matter.  We must embrace what was taught to and by the disciples and what we saw happening in the first church. Veering from this original understanding of what Jesus intended, and scripture substantiates, may be tradition in your church, but it is dead wrong.

The result of side-stepping God’s Word means we don’t remember who we are.  We, corporately, have forgotten how to fly.  Each day we continue to look like the rest of the world: broken, addicted, angry, bitter, unforgiving and battered is a day we are not following in His footsteps.  Jesus paid the blood price for us to be healed, saved, free from bondage, released from slavery and deep darkness. Jesus bought our freedom and sent the Holy Spirit to empower us to FLY! (Luke 10:19)

The honest-to-goodness followers of Jesus, had best claim that inheritance, and begin to heal the broken wings and broken hearts of our brothers and sisters. We can’t achieve our destiny, our Kingdom-decreed purpose on earth until we move into that place of  complete repentance and healing. 

Its getting late, there is no time to wallow in brokenness, accept sin and dysfunction as normal nor to continue following off-track doctrines (2 Tim. 3:5) which eviscerate our flight plan.  This is the time when our vision needs to be clear, our trajectory obedient and unimpaired, and soar!

For further study:

1 Cor. 12; Ephesians 4.  There are tabs on this website entitled Holy Spirit 101 and Holy Spirit 102 which give copious amounts of scripture and additional insight on this essential topic.  Acts 19:2- Fly!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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The One with the Yellow Jackets

In the early morning hours of February 4th I had a very vivid, Godly dream:

In the first scene, I saw from afar, my OHV ( Off Highway All-Terrain Vehicle) driving slowly along a farm trail .  On one side a barbed wire fence was visible such as you would see along the edge of someone’s property.  Bordered  on the other side by a large field of what looked from my somewhat distant perspective, some sort of grain.  The vehicle slowed to a stop alongside this beautiful field.

In the next scene : My Point of View has changed, now I am sitting by myself, in the passenger seat inside the OHV.  Suddenly there are hoards of swarming yellow jackets covering the windshield, and presumably the rest of the OHV.

Then, because this vehicle has a removable cover and doors,( not tightly constructed like a jeep) the yellow jackets began to find ways inside the vehicle.  Along the edge of the windshield there came burrowing inside,hundreds of yellow jackets, buzzing furiously and glomming up on top of each other as they entered my vehicle.  I don’t mind telling you that I was starting to freak out!

I was sitting there, a mass of indecision.  As yet, there had been no direct attack  or stinging…just the horrible noise of agitated, buzzing insects.  In my mind I am picturing massive attack followed by fatal, anaphylactic shock, I was considering my limited options:  Just open the door and run like crazy!  Or start swatting bugs as fast as possible. Stay really, really still and don’t move until they lose interest and go away. My sitelines were diminishing as they covered the windshield.  However, it was the noise which was dreadful. Immediate “bolt and run” seemed my best option.

Before I could take any decisive action, I heard a voice (always helpful in dreams and definitely cuts down on any interpretive confusion!)

“Don’t Move!” says the authoritative voice, of what I assume is the Lord or a messenger thereof.  ” Just open the door and command them all to leave.”

 I must have done exactly what The Voice told me to do, although I have no memory of taking this action in my dream. In that moment all I felt was immense relief and immediate quiet.  No more threatening buzzing!

Next thing I know,  I hear and receive further explanation: ” It is the workers coming to the harvest field  that have stirred up all the yellow jackets, the demonic!”

In the next scene, there is a tall and narrow canvas possibly 2x 6 feet tall. ( just guessing)  It was a big picture painted on the canvas.  So, here’s the BIG PICTURE:

Painted with a brilliant blue background was a tall, powerfully, athletic woman in very shiny, full-body armor.  Bearing no resemblance to my 60-year-old grandmotherly self, this picture was painted in a Marvel Comics animation style of a tall female ready and waiting for battle, completely outfitted in armor glowing in the sunlight, and carrying a huge shield emblazoned with a red cross on the front.  The other hand was resting on the hilt of a very long, very huge sword and the woman was standing in thigh high ripe wheat.

The final words I heard, clearly stated by the very loud voice announced, ” Warrior Woman!”

I sat straight up in the bed and stayed wide awake for a very long time!

Is this a dream telling us that time is short to share the Good News of Jesus and Gospel of the Kingdom?  Yes!

Is this a dream which enforces who we are in Christ and how we need to operate?  Yes

Is this a dream that reminds us that the demonic has only what power that we offer them in fear or ignorance?  Absolutely!

Is this a dream which should encourage us into authoritative action in whatever field of influence we are dropped?  Yes, Indeed.!

Should we expect a rising up-tick in demonic activity as we prepare for the greatest harvest of souls in the history of the world?  You betcha!

Big Picture?   As Warrior Men and Women we are driving up and wading into the greatest harvest of souls ever seen, we need to understand that the demonic doesn’t always wear a red suit and carry a pitchfork. We need to get serious about our mission while operating our Father’s Business, remember who we are, and keep our heads on a swivel!

 

 

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Storm Warning 2

What follows is the Interpretation of the Dream entitled Storm Warning, outlined in the previous post:

 Now The Breakdown:

I like to step back from Godly or Biblical Dreams and determine exactly what the big ticket item or major theme elements are. There are different kinds of dreams that the Lord gives us and sometimes there are several different sorts of dreams swirling around a common theme.

So, the main theme in my estimation, is that there is a really nasty storm coming. Storm can be literal or figurative. I’m guessing this is Spiritual/Supernatural and it’s BIG and it’s BAD. Judging by the visceral reaction of the pastor as he looks out the window, it scares him to death.

Timing: I think it is significant that Chris received this dream on the morning after the National Election. This event could be setting into motion a national “storm” or profound shaking, or repercussions that are even now on the horizon, but as yet is mostly unseen.

Participants: It is important to note that often in dreams people participating within those dreams are merely there because their name (first or last) actually means something significant and it that meaning that has a role in the message. However, I believe that in this dream Jay is really Jay- the pastor of your Gunnison church. The dream includes Chris, but it is essentially a message—a specific wake-up call or warning message to his pastor.

So, let’s look at the various elements in this important dream:

As my friend enters the church he sees that the entire aisle is covered in what appears to be white cottonwood fuzz: I believe that this is important on several levels. White is a picture of purity, holiness or righteousness. These cottonwoods grow along the river or waterways. You don’t find them thriving anywhere there is not a source of consistent water which is a profound spiritual picture in scripture beginning in Psalms 1.

Secondly, the seeds are released by cottonwoods- as anyone in Lake City knows only in a specific season- (here it is the end of June into the first weeks of July) and are carried by the wind where ever it takes them. Another deeply beautiful picture of the work of the Holy Spirit. (Matthew 13) Seeds are what a picture of the possibility of new growth of a new generation of equally well-planted trees taking their sustenance from the Rivers of Living Water.

To have such a powerful symbol lining the center aisle of your church, in my mind, is a very good thing! It means that you are doing something right and it is very pleasing to God.

The 2×4 clean spot:

Numbers, of course, have consistent meaning in Scripture. Most Christians are familiar with 7 being a number associated with Messianic fulfillment. 7 is the number for divine perfection, Rest, Spiritual completion. We are to rest on the 7th day, the 7th year. Every Shemitah cycle is 7 x7 then the Jubilee is the following year. The 7th month in Judaism hold all the final three Feasts of the Lord—Trumpets, Yom Kippur and Tabernacles. You get what I am saying. Numbers matter. And, Ancient Hebrew was once a pictographic language. Easy to read and heavy with symbolism. Every Hebrew letter correlates to a corresponding number, by the way. See Hebrew4Christians.com if this is new information to you

Two is a number which aligns with the second Hebrew letter Bet which means house. It also is a number with is associated with witness or agreement or testimony. Wherever two or more are gathered together…. You get the idea.

Four is a number which in Hebrew lines up with letter number four is Dalet. The Hebrew picture looks like a little closed tent. The bent shape of the dalet is said to symbolize the needy or impoverished person.

If you multiply that equation which our dreamer saw- he stated it as 2×4 which equals # 8 !

The number 8 in Hebrew is Chet. It looks like a little doorway or Portal. The letter of life. The word Chayim means life. It is also the number for New Beginnings. You will recall that Jesus was brought to the temple in Jerusalem on the 8th day which is commonly a reference to the last Sabbath day of the Feast of Tabernacles.   Also a number associated with Grace and wisdom. Chet is also the letter of light. According to Hebrew4Christians,” Chet is also the letter of light since Vav represents the yasher-or light that descends from God and Zayin is the Chozer the light that ascends or returns to God. Ancient rabbis considered that letter, Chet the doorway of Light from heaven. John 17:22-23

A picture version or numerical recap might read: Entering the House of the needy or impoverished multiplies or equals the doorway to life and light. Aha! Lest we forget, Hebrew reads the opposite direction: Light and Life are multiplied when the impoverished and needy enter the His House.

I just love that kind of thing so I tossed it in for free- because I think it shows how awesome our Lord is!

Most often the #8 is associated with New Beginnings and as I see this pathway of white fuzzy seeds with a totally-clean-vacuumed clean spot I see that as—you and your church are on a Godly-righteous path but have now arrived at that spot of NEW BEGINNING.

In his dream there is a vacuum cleaner sitting there. To operate a vacuum cleaner- which is a mechanism for achieving cleanliness- in this case within your church- then in order to function and work properly, it must be plugged in at all times, to a power source. The power source is the Holy Spirit.

If the overall theme is: There is a HUGE SCARY STORM A-COMING then a complimentary theme would be: In order to step into that New Beginning- Are you completely plugged in to THE power source?

Windows– In life, windows are clear panes to look from the outside in or the inside out. They allow us to SEE stuff.

In dreams, windows are indicative of the same. They are an avenue for GODLY REVELATION. Little windows equal small revelation, while big windows equate to Big Revelation.

Here we have two big windows. Or, Godly Revelation squared! You may want to re-read the portion above on the # two. Two is a witness or testimony. For instance, if in God’s word, he repeats something several times – One should take copious notes because it is confirmed to be a vital Biblical prophecy, truth or principle. Seeing double windows is a repetitive, confirming “visual” that it is either going to happen or it is VERY IMPORTANT, or probably both!

Note, later in the dream, the entire congregation is driving around surveying the aftermath of the storm in a vehicle made entirely of glass windows. This dream message therefore, is expected to be understood and important to the entire body of your congregation and possibly for the Body of Christ at large as on-going- on the move-revelation.

Chris arrives just as worship is ending and Jay is just stepping up to preach. Good time to mention that it is worship that ushers us into the throne-room of God which is the best place for clear and awesome revelation!

Jay, the pastor, then steps to the podium to preach buy then goes and sits in the drummer’s seat and looks out the window.  He is wearing a telephone head set. The Revelation of God (times 2) he is seeing clearly out those windows takes precedent over whatever he had planned for that sermon. Excellent secondary theme to live by: Always follow the lead of the Holy Spirit.

The Drummer’s seat: I don’t want to put too fine a point on this. Not every single element in a Godly dream needs to mean something. However, historically, the drummer in battle would set the pace for the marching army. Recall if you will the old movie, Ben Hur where Charlton Heston was a galley slave rowing for the Roman Empire. The drummer set the pace depending on what was happening on the sea battle and to achieve success–the rowers were to follow that signal drum based on what was happening in the battle.

For believers, God is the one who sets the timing. He is the leader who sets the heartbeat of what is to happen in Spiritual warfare. Pastors need to remember they are sitting in God’s Drummer’s seat.

Chis tells us that as Jay sits in this drummer’s seat he immediately takes in the scene thru the 2 big windows. HORRENDOUS is the how he expressed the STORM.

Jay can suddenly can see what is coming and Chis tells us that the congregation can’t see what the pastor is seeing in that moment. Chris only sees that sweat is suddenly pouring off of his pastor.

The Horrible Storm: I’m going to say this is a dark, Supernatural warfare of a storm with the proviso that Spiritual Storms can and do often arrive in tandem with equally terrible circumstances in the natural.

This storm is bearing down and Chris just “knows in the dream” that Jay is not expecting this and Jay also knows that he has not adequately prepared his congregation for this eventuality. (It is always very handy in Godly dreams when the participant just KNOWS something, the only thing better is when there is a Voice Over telling you something to accompany the scene!)

* Here is the warning and the big take-away from this dream: Jay sees the coming storm. Jay, the pastor, recognizes it immediately for what it truly is and means. Concurrently, he belatedly realized he had not done the groundwork of preparation for his flock!

He is sweating bullets. Fear, Regret, worry, anxiety over not really being prepared or having been taken by surprise? Yes, but let’s take note and see what he immediately does:

He calls on his headset–asking for an IMMEDIATE Weather Report. The Holy Spirit is the ultimate spiritual weatherman. Jay is now completely reliant on the Expertise and Leading of the Spiritual Weatherman. We have to know where to turn for answers when we are faced with crazy, bad, horrific, unexpected spiritual warfare.

Too many pastors and spiritual leaders don’t want to appear negative, or scare their congregations.  Perhaps they rationalize, “Hey we are going to be raptured out before anything really bad happens so therefore, I don’t need to focus on scary Revelation or the possibility of persecution or bad things happening.” Until we get orders otherwise, we are ON the Battlefield and we better be armored up and plugged in to THE source of power.

Change of scene—As the scene switches we now see the entire congregation along with Chris and Pastor Jay who is driving them around town looking at the aftermath of the storm damage.

I have already discussed the significance of the glass vehicle: Vehicles, cars, boats, trains, ocean liners or tricycles can all represent your ministry or your life or the mission of the church. A row boat or bicycle may represent a small or more personal ministry whereas a train or huge vehicle represents something which impacts or moves a lot more people.

Now, this glass  ministry vehicle is seen motoring around what Chris believes to be Gunnison. I don’t necessarily believe this has to be THAT town, but is more than likely representative of something broader. ( I didn’t get anything specific on exactly where or how widespread the coming storm was.)

Buildings (foundational structures) are down and trees are uprooted. Something serious has happened here- and everything has been turned topsy-turvy! However, look what happens now!! The church, your church is NOT DAMAGED, adversely impacted nor affected. Watch this! Just the opposite! NOW that entire body is MOVING TOGETHER in REVELATION Knowledge. Thru the storm and after the storm, you are moving!!

AND– What is happening while this move is happening? Chris and Jay and perhaps the others, are ordering cocktails all over the place. Wherever they go they order drinks!

When you stop laughing, don’t get confused and please don’t misunderstand this type of seemingly ungodly reference. In “dream language”- this is a picture or euphemism- of the Holy SPIRIT.

As your church body is MOVING thru this Storm Damage you are constantly dependent, reliant and ordering more and more of the Holy Spirit. You must stay topped off. (Notice neither of the men are seen holding or drinking actual intoxicating beverages). WE are called not to be drunk with wine but TO BE FILLED by the power of the Holy Spirit. It is much more important to be so sloppy, over-filled while in the midst of something horrendous than when everything is hunky-dory!

During this time we see that the State Trooper is watching and looks to be disapproving. I can go two ways with this element of the dream. The “state trooper” I think, could represent the accepted governmental or “state” authority. They don’t approve and they don’t get us. They, in the world, have no understanding of the power source you depend on and it makes you suspect in a dark world.

OR—It could be representative of people who frequent your church OR members of other mainline churches who may be legalistic, are under the influence of religious spirits and are always disapproving or suspicious of things of the Holy Spirit. Could be both.

But, please note that everyone who wasn’t reliant on the Holy Spirit incurred damage or was uprooted. They may “state” or verbalize that they are “troopers” or Christians and part of “the army” but really have no true understanding of what things or weapons of the Spirit are. This is pretty serious stuff!

We see the State Trooper in two different scenes where there is potential “ordering of lots of Spirits” happening. Which, as I said before, really flags this dream element’s importance. This “trooper” is watching how you move and react and operate in the aftermath of the coming storm. He does not appear until after the storm. He wants to see how you “drive” after being under the influence of the Spirit.

This is something to definitely keep in mind.   When the lukewarm church or those who have been stuck believing pervasive bad doctrine that the Holy Spirit and His gifts are not necessary or important come thru that “coming horrendous storm” one of 2 things is likely to happen.

One– They will either fall away in great numbers from the Church (which is prophetically accurate according to 2 Thessalonians 2:1-3; and 1 Tim 4:1)  OR they will watch and witness those that are operating in actual HOLY SPIRIT POWER as did the First Church in Acts and fall in love with King Jesus in a totally new way.

Some Christians who have never seen anything powerful have absolutely no expectation of what being attuned and really plugged in to the Power source can do for people in REAL LIFE application.

I think it is important to note that in this dream, Jay knew that state trooper fellow and said, “Sometimes he comes here.” Some folks like to flirt with the Holy Spirit but are merely curious or are not fully committed…or, have not asked for or yet received the Baptism in the Spirit.

The pastor was concerned that Chris was “under the influence” and shouldn’t drive with the “trooper” watching. Sometimes we are reluctant to operate in the gifts around those Believers who don’t believe in the power of the Holy Spirit. We don’t want to make others uncomfortable or perhaps we just don’t want to have to go there. I think we are missing a powerful, illustrative, teaching moment for those who just don’t know what they don’t know!

Chris replies that if he can’t drive, he will call his father in law. In reality Chris’ father-in-law, Adrian Finlayson, has been dead and gone for 35 years. I think in this instance this element means that Chris will rely on his Father (in the Law) that is a complicated “dream” way of saying The Lord. Calling on the Lord.

However, the dreamer, loved and respected his real life father-in-law and thus, it made this reference easily recognizable for him. By the way, that name, Finlayson, means son of the light-haired warrior. It’s another warfare reference.

Another subtle, yet important element involved is that after the viewing of the devastating storm damage Chris and Pastor Jay are at the Coffee Machine in the place of fellowship at your church. What does coffee do? It wakes you up it gets you moving and keeps you from falling asleep! A coffee machine is a mechanism which causes all that to occur and can keep lots of people bright-eyed and bushy-tailed in a Spiritual “java” sort of way!

So let’s review:

There is lots of Holy Spirit revelation to be had here: Confirmed and double portions of it.

Pastorally, it is your-and our- responsibility to teach- NO HOLDS BARRED- preparedness and readiness for MAJOR prophetic, incoming spiritual warfare “storms” so that you can MOVE powerfully in the aftermath with Holy Spirit revelation. We should be aware that other folks of varying spiritual awareness will be watching how we react in the tough times as well as the good ones. And, we need rely on His voice and let God set the pace for the battle. We are to remain under the influence of the Spirit- totally saturated.

** This is not the time for anyone in the body of Christ to be dithering about in things that have no eternal purpose. Be watching and remain wide awake so that you will see when the horrendous storm is coming!!!

A new (and thankfully shorter) DREAM will be posted on Sunday! Hope you will be watching for that!

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Storm Warning

Here’s the Deal:

Regular followers of Feverseason.com know that I often write about dreams the Lord has given me. Other times, folks send me dreams that they have had and ask me to interpret them or confirm to them what they are thinking that the dream means.

I consider it a privilege and love to do so as it always exhibits the enormous heart of God for his people. If they give me their permission, those dreams may wind up as a blog post for your enlightenment.

The following is a dream that was sent to me by a local, long-time Feverseason reader. I have changed the names at his request. This amazing detailed dream should be a heads up to all of us, especially those in leadership, pastoring or teaching roles in the body of Christ:

Chris’s Dream 11-9-16 (Early Morning after the National Election) 

The Dream as reported to me:

In the dream, Chris walked into his actual Spirit-filled church in Gunnison. The long walkway (center aisle) was covered thickly with lots of cottonwood fuzz (seeds). There was one clean portion about 2×4 ft. vacuumed and perfectly clean. This element jumped out at him because everything else was a mess with the cottonwood fuzz. The vacuum cleaner was sitting there in the clean spot.

Chris arrived there just as worship was ending and Jay, his pastor, got up to preach. He first stood at the podium to preach as usual and then sat down in the “drummer’s seat” where he could easily see out of the two windows in his line of sight.

Jay was wearing a telephone head set and was looking directly out of two big windows (which are not there in real life). Through these windows he could see a HORRENDOUS STORM COMING.

Sweat was pouring off of Jay as he saw what was coming. Immediately he called for a weather report on his headset to determine the magnitude of the storm he saw coming.

Chris “knew” in his dream that Jay was sweating because he had not prepared the church for this kind of storm. The situation/Storm was totally unexpected and the pastor was taken by surprise.

Change of scene:

The scene changes to after “The Storm”—the entire church is driving around in a huge glassed in vehicle. Jay is driving. They are looking at the storm damage.

There is lots of damage—buildings down, trees uprooted.

Jay and our dreamer, Chis are ordering lots of cocktails. They are never seen drinking or even holding these beverages, but there is lots of requesting or ordering going on.

Chris notices that there is a “State Trooper” watching them, and looking very serious- from a distance.

Change of scene:

The scene changes and Everyone is back at the church. Just Chris and Jay are at the coffee machine talking, although others members are around.

However, they are at the coffee machine in the fellowship area.

Not drinking coffee but instead ordering 2 more cocktails.

The “state trooper” is still watching and giving Chris a “look”

Jay expresses concern about Chris driving (presumably after all these cocktails!)

Chris responds “If I can’t drive, I’ll call my father-in-law. (in actuality, Chris’s father-in -aw has been dead 35 years, his name is Adrian Finlayson and Chris always really liked him and got on well with him-back in the day!)

Chris then inquired of Jay if, “The state trooper comes here often?” It looks like Pastor Jay knows or recognizes the State Trooper because he replies, “He comes sometimes.”

 

End of Dream

 

 

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Location, Location, Location!

Today there are lots of shows on TV featuring cute couples fixing up houses and flipping them for profit. Like that old Barbara Mandrell song, “I was Country before Country was Cool”, my husband and I had no clue that what we were doing would someday be trendy!

Though never professional real estate flipper’s we had lots of enthusiasm but no viable skills- taking the attitude of “how hard can it be?” and set about try stuff. Occasionally “How hard can it be” proved to be pretty hard, especially while living in the midst of the chaos. We would generally find the worst house in the best neighborhood and set about, over time, to make it as wonderful as we could.

 During those years we moved often and flipped lots of houses. We taught ourselves skill sets and how to use scary tools, and undertook projects into the wee hours of the morning, making improvements while the children slept. In the process we removed a lot of old, filthy, ugly aspects of dated real estate we had purchased. Looking back on it all, we didn’t always knock it out of the park, but usually came out on the plus side financially and had a lot of fun along the way. Good times!

Of course, there is a sermon in this story. Jesus is after all the ultimate Fixer-Upper! And for some inexplicable reason he chose to purchase us. From the point of view or perspective of the house, everything was fine. You and I didn’t realize how raggedy we were on the block!  We thought we looked great, unaware that we had long been tagged for ultimate demolition and that our days were numbered!

As He enters thru that open front door, we are suddenly, painfully aware of our garish paint and that the carpeting of our heart is so nasty no one would willingly walk across it. In spite of the pitiful condition of my real estate- complete with faulty wiring and toxic plumbing- Jesus made an incredible offer for us and signed it in blood.

By comparing ourselves only to those others, equally doomed, in our neighborhood, we had no comprehension til we met The Builder, what a sad ramshackle mess we were! He begins where all beginnings should start with that cracked, and faulty foundation. He jacks us up and straightens us out and pours us a new foundation with his name stamped on the cornerstone.

The purchase complete, He immediately moved right in with the mess, peeling paint and suspicious smells. He alone had the vision of what this house would look like when he was done.  The man with the plan, Jesus wasted no time, rolled up his sleeves and set to work on the transformation of His dream house.

Brand new windows were soon installed to let the revelation stream in. And a new roof protected what lay beneath. Room by room, the Fixer Upper steadily made quiet changes. He ripped down dusty drapes, peeled hideous wallpaper, He sliced up the tri-colored shag carpet and carried it out chunk by manageable chunk. Jesus patched the holes, and replaced needed drywall which had suffered through years of rough treatment. He added His signature crown molding and changed the locks on all the doors. Along with crates of trash and clutter he found, Jesus and his hard-working helper, Holy Spirit cleared the attic and basement of dangerous critters, eradicating all sign of pests and vermin.   He rewired the house from the ground up, removed the lead pipes and had the water tested. He installed a new mailbox, replaced every light fixtures and gave us state of the art electronics, complete with lovely finishes and top of the line appliances. In this kitchen amazing things will soon be prepared. Next he begins to change the landscape planting new trees and flowers. New paint, in and out, gave us a fresh, new face. He took the time to oil every hinge, and make sure that every single thing was level.

When complete. This once shaky house is totally new. Nothing looks the same because nothing is the same! Now, I am His habitation, His tabernacle! He has moved in and over time placed his stamp on every aspect of this redeemed purchase. The aroma of his anointing fills every room; and with this changed atmosphere anyone who comes down the street or visits this house can tell it is different.

The value has gone up astronomically and soon begins to affect the whole neighborhood. Jesus is a carpenter after all and when we open that door to the ultimate Fixer Upper, nothing will ever be the same.

For further study:

Romans 12:1-2; Psalms 51:10; Isaiah 43:19; Jeremiah 25:11; Psalm 103:1-5; 1 Cor. 3:11-13; Psalm 11:3; Ezk. 36:26; 2 Timothy 2:19; Isa. 58:12

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An Unexpected Guest

In October, I had a brief yet important dream.  In it, I was standing in the sanctuary of a little church that I recognized.  Let me say up front that I in no way believe this dream to be specific to any particular church.  I feel the Lord was giving me a birds-eye view of what is routinely being unpacked  in a broad host of modern day churches- transcending denomination, location or size. I do however, believe it is a warning  which the Body of Christ needs to immediately awaken to and heed:

In the dream the lights were out in the church and no one was there.  It was clear that a move had just happened as the aisles and the raised podium platform were cluttered with cardboard boxes and packages, as yet unpacked.  In the center of the platform and perfectly centered amidst the boxes was a large (maybe 2 1/2 or 3 ft. high), barrel-shaped pot with an ancient-looking patina that had once been white.  From my point of view, this pot looked ceramic and old with what looked like worn glaze or limestone leaching blotching the surface as we often see in old flowerpots.  This vessel had clearly been around for a long, long time.

In the fading light, I watched as something began to slowly rise up from this vessel.  Extremely tall, and seemingly made from a black tangle of spider webs or licorice-like vines, he rose casually, unfolding as it came up from this container.  Incredibly, this disturbing man stood straight up – it’s feet still in the big pot.  Showing no surprise at arriving in a church sanctuary, this being began to stretch and slowly look around as though he were taking stock of his new home.

Eventually, its glance fell on me and rested there. assessing me.  No words were ever spoken, no threatening moves were directed at me as I observed him from just out of the scene. In the dream, I was startled he could see me. However,  I wasn’t afraid, I was mad.

Head cocked to the side, it looked me in the eyes for a long time.  Eventually he smiled with a cocky look  projecting his message, “I belong here, I am at home, and you can’t do a thing about it.”

At this, I abruptly woke up.

 I don’t think this dream is difficult to break down.  This “Church” which could be any church, had just moved in.  Or, one might even say, The Church had experienced, or wanted to experience “A MOVE”.  They had brought their assorted boxes of hymnals and supplies and along with them came this oversized, antique treasure front and center.

The large white pot contained a religious spirit.  The oblivious congregation, thinking it beautiful and familiar, brought it along. Front and center placement indicates that it was important….dare I say, the MOST important thing.  The “religious traditions, the doctrinal castles which have been built over the ages had become more precious than the Son, more valued than redeeming blood, and had eclipsed the worship due the King of Kings.

A religious spirit was the problem Jesus identified as poisoning the Temple worship and priesthood in his day.  Not happy with the actual Law of Moses, Priests and Levites had built empires of doctrine, kosher strictures and boatloads of extra legalisms which eclipsed the heart of the Father for His chosen people; robbing them of their true destiny.

Traditional correctness became more treasured than actual heart righteousness or relationship with God.  Jesus, confronted wrong hearts and motives, easily stripped their religiosity and called them out.  He labeled their sin for what it was; and their religious “hypocrisy” as whited sepulchers. (Matt. 23)

There is a brutal lesson to be learned from the conflict of Jesus and the “Priesthood” of his day.  Clearly in love with their lucrative social standing, these fellows ignored their calling and totally lost their way. These religious elites were so married to man-made traditions, so glued to the itinerary they missed the fulfillment and blessings of the Word of God -which they should have joyfully identified! Sadder still, they missed their opportunity to experience the glory of the Living God and worst of all, they totally missed their Salvation- Jesus the Messiah! It is good to remember: Rampant unchecked religious spirits equate to wholesale spiritual blindness!

In my dream this dark spirit locked eyes with me.  He knew who I was and what I thought about him.  He didn’t care.

Any demonic spirit operating legally in your life, that of your family or your church must be recognized and authoritatively dealt with in the Name of Jesus.  It is our calling and responsibility. Until that happens this religious spirit is free to continue to sow offense among your deacons and committees.  He will encourage gossip and disrespect in Christian ranks.  He is accomplished at punching up discontent and fomenting rage when a sermon runs too long or teaching grows too powerful. He despises worship music and prefers those songs which merely sing about God not to Him.  He is fully aware that it is true worship which will bring folks into the throne room and stirs the Spirit of God.

This creature’s primary objective is to whisper lies, “God no longer heals”, ” Don’t be silly, Believer’s can’t be demonized”  Don’t preach on that, the people aren’t ready for anything too deep!  He slyly insinuates that church is irrelevant and “all religions lead to heaven”. This sticky spirit loves to erode the Gospel of Jesus’ Kingdom.

All demonic spirits have only one desire: to emasculate the people. Once truly saved, he can’t destroy you. However, he wants nothing more than steal your destiny, to have your church to be an entertaining , social club and everyone inside harmless, clueless and devoid of power.

The Lord intended for me to see this religious spirit’s condescending look.  In my dream, he transmitted clearly that he thought I was powerless to change his insidious mission.  He was wrong.

 

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Defining Moments

I am sometimes asked about the wisdom of mixing current politics and religion.  To be honest I sometimes ask myself about the wisdom of this path!  There is ever a siren song of fame, broader appeal, more hits on the FB page if I would just tone it down, lay off all the Holy Spirit stuff and be funnier. Unfortunately, I believe the time for hemming and hawing is over. We are living in a world where the politics and honest-to-God Christianity have clashed. People- most people- even sweet Christian people- are completely oblivious. Oblivion is nice but it can get you killed.

The headlines ARE fulfilling Biblical scripture almost every day. Not to connect those dots is dangerous!  We cannot afford the luxury of pithy phrasing, amusing anecdotes, or the polite, vague response.  That cheats our neighbors and wastes precious time. In a time where Biblical knowledge is at an all time low and pastors rarely even give invitations to come down the aisle and accept Jesus in their hearts- we also live in a society where folks are afraid to speak out against sin and to call their nation back to Bible-based righteousness.  What’s a girl to do?  If not me-who?

If the clock is ticking down and I believe it is– how can I wait on others more qualified, more loquacious or famous to do the job?  I once had a very vivid  Godly dream where the Lord told me to be bold as I stood in the center of His hand. That’s motivational and I therefore leave the fallout and the popularity polls to others. There is a choice we all have- to either slink down the road less traveled as unobtrusively as possible or to step out boldly on that path and ‘splain  what we know to be true about Jesus as plainly and often as we can.

As a student of history it has long been my intent to do a post on the terms which continue to be bandied about post-election. In less than a week we will all experience the upcoming Presidential inauguration. Serious and repeated calls for civil disobedience and mayhem have been issued by oppositional groups.  Additionally, Paris Peace Accords are gathering of 70 nations have now begun.  The goal seems to be powering through an official two-state solution between Israel and Palestine.  My fear is that in this final week of Obama’s Presidency, he will attempt to double-down on his abhorrent UN abstention on the anti-Israeli resolution. My concern is that in his final moments in office President Obama would like to establish a legacy moment and rush through a vote in the UN  mandating official Palestinian statehood.  This could force Israel into an international court defense when they vociferously object. This surely places America in a precarious, dangerous place going forward. Gen. 12:3

 It seemed an opportune moment for this” definition” post.   I am not endeavoring to be controversial although I’m sure some will think that I am.  I believe a primer of sorts could clarify confusion over semantics and political theory:

 A Republic: Our country was originally created to be a Constituational Republic which operates under the Rule of Law as defined by the founding fathers in the US Constitution. This system has at it’s core, inalienable rights, limited powers, civil liberties and freedoms which are became the envy of the world.

 A Democracy: A democracy is  Rule of the People. “People Rule” may or may not chose to follow the law. A Democratic Republic attempts to balance both the rule of law with the rule of the people. A shared trifold system of protections with Legislative, Judicial and Executive branches were precautions against one branch taking too much power. The electoral college system was insurance to prevent one or two populous states from always holding sway in national elections.  United States of America and Israel are examples of  modern Democracy in action.

Monarchy:  System of Government run by a ruling King orQueen or conglomerate of a Royal Family. America was started as a colonial enterprise under English Monarchy in the early 1600’s. Modern day Saudi Arabia and Jordan have acting Monarchy’s.

Constitutional Monarchy:  Many countries moved from absolute monarchy’s to a parliamentary system or constitutional monarchy while maintaining a royal family either as figure heads or with limited powers such as Sweden or England.

Theocracy:  System of government where priests, prophets or judges rule in the name of God or a god. Ancient Israel operated as a Theocracy from the time of Moses until the King Saul.  According to the Bible the earth, in the Millennial Kingdom will be a Theocracy with the nations ruled by the Lord. World Atlas identifies theocratic countries currently as Vatican City, and Islamic Caliphates such as Iran and Afghanistan.

Christianity:  Belief that Jesus is the promised Messiah.  Only through  personal belief in Jesus( and only Jesus). Christianity is based on the belief  sinless, Jesus gave his own life- died on the cross, was buried and rose from the dead  for our salvation so that we can receive eternal life. He’s not a prophet, he’s not a good guy that taught good things, He claimed to be God,the King of Kings and he is coming back soon. One cannot be born a Christian: it is a definitive decision and act of faith to follow ( action verb) Jesus.

Judaism:  The belief in the God of Abraham Isaac and Jacob who gave with covenant promise the land of Israel to his chosen people. Christianity worships the exact same God, believing that Jesus is/was God incarnate. Early Christians were all Jews believing Jesus was in fact the fulfillment of the Old Testament prophesies. One can be born a Jew and live without believing in God or following the tenets of the faith. Most of the world’s Jewish population now lives in Israel and America.

Islam:  The belief in Allah, a derivative of the ancient moon god which is why the crescent moon is depicted on their flag. Mohammad is the prophet who received the “angelic” or supernatural revelation in a cave and wrote down the writings.  What began as a religious ideology quickly morphed into a rigid militaristic regime.  One of the 5 pillars of Islam is belief in the One true god however, this is NOT the same God that Christians and Jews worship. The religion split into two groups with some variations in ideology following Mohammad’s death and subsequent power shuffle.  The Sunni, which is the largest denomination, and the Shia includes primarily Iran, India, Pakistan are the two main off-shoots of this dispute.  Barack Obama was raised as a Sunni Muslim.  It is widely understood that the clearly stated goal of Islam is a world-wide Caliphate which will be under the rule via Sharia law.  As demographics in Europe are tipping in their favor, there are areas which local police fear to tread and sharia law is being practiced to the exclusion of the law of the land.

Socialism: Merriam-Webster defines Socialism as a way of organizing a society in which major industries are owned and controlled by the government rather than by individual people and companies.  England’s Prime Minister, Margaret Thatcher is famously quoted as saying the problem with Socialism is that sooner or later you always run out of other people’s money.  She had a good point.  The former Soviet Union is a good example.

Progressive: Progressivism seems a spiffy re-packaging of old school liberalism  and more palatable communism.  At it’s core Progressives believe in some level of redistribution of wealth, and more government control into all areas of our lives. Often linked as Progressive Socialism or Progressive Democracy, The Heritage Foundation defines as following:  Both Socialism and Progressivism use government power to control economic outcomes. The methods they use, however, are different. Socialism, strictly speaking, involves the government’s ownership of the means of production in a society. In a socialist economy, there are no private corporations that manufacture goods. All factories and companies belong to the state. Progressivism, by contrast, allows private ownership and control of corporations and manufacturing (thus a private economy and markets), although it does subject them to extensive government administration mostly through heavy regulation as well as other controls.

Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton claim to be Progressive Democrats.

Libertarians: Merriam-Webster defines them as persons who believe they should be allowed to live with little or no interference from the government.  Liberty being the key word.  Libertarians generally seem to be reluctant to become embroiled in foreign conflicts and hold to the limits which the founding fathers placed in the Constitution to keep the government from growing too big for it’s own britches. Recent presidential candidate, Rand Paul is a Libertarian as are noted economist Thomas Sowell, and actor Kurt Russell just to name a few.

Communism: Oxford dictionary cites this political theory derived from Karl Marx, advocating class war and leading to a society in which all property is publically owned and each person works and is paid according to their abilities and needs.   Merriam-Webster states Communism is a way of organizing a society in which the government owns the things that are used to make and transport products ( such as land, oil, factories, ships etc) and there is no privately owned property.  Communism is a doctrine based on revolutionary Marxian/Leninism that was the official ideology of the USSR.  Notable Communist leaders include Mao Zedong of China, Vladamir Lenin, Trotsky, Joe Stalin, Che Guevara and the recently deceased, Fidel Castro of Cuba.

Capitalism: An economic and political system in which a country’s trade and industry are controlled by private owners for profit, rather than by the state.  A capitalist is someone who has capital to invest trade and leverage resulting in prosperity, jobs and opportunities and tax revenues for the government which has been democratically voted on by it’s people.  I want apples- you raise apples- I trade you money or barter for apples.  You get what you need- and I get what I need. You plant more trees and grow more apples so that next year you can sell more apples to people like me.  Everybody is happy. Free-Market Capitalists generally maintain that government’s job is to create an atmosphere where business can flourish and opportunity is thereby not over regulated.

Fascism: Wikipedia identifies Fascism as a form of radical authoritarian nationalism that came to prominence in early 20th-century Europe, influenced by national syndicalism. Fascism originated in Italy during World War I and spread to other European countries such as Nazi Germany. Once in power Adolf Hitler turned Germany into a fascist state. Fascist was originally used to describe the government of Benito Mussolini in Italy. Mussolini’s fascist one-party state emphasized patriotism, national unity, hatred of communism, admiration of military values and unquestioning obedience.  With the advent of WWII, a “military citizenship” and ideal of a perfect superior race arose in which all citizens were involved with the military in some manner during the war. Hitler killed an estimated 6 million civilian Jews and any others he didn’t like in concentration camps and gas chambers.

Islamic Fascism:  Actual belief in the written Koran and the military standard therein that there will be Jihad until all the world acknowledges the superiority either by conversion or payment of the dhimmitude, of Islam.  There is no middle ground, reasoning with or making of diplomatic treaties with a religious/military fascists who have the scripturally endorsed belief that it is perfectly permissible to lie to “non-believers” to achieve the goals of world-wide Islam.  Additional stated goals are to wipe Israel off the face of the map.

Stalinism:  This is a moniker applied to the ruthless, dictatorial style of Joseph Stalin who rose to power shortly after the Bolshevik Revolution. Joseph Stalin’s goal was to turn the Soviet Union into a modern military industrial power. Deaths attributed to his regime thru execution, gulag detention etc…conservatively range from 4-10 million.  When deaths caused by the Great Soviet Famine (1932-33) are included the estimates soar from 10-20 million.

Dictatorship:  A system of government where one powerful person rules the country autocratically and commonly very brutally.   Hitler, a fascist; Stalin a communist, and currently North Korea’s Kim Jong Il are all considered dictators.

Terms:

misogynist: Often used instead of “rude and obnoxious”. It is defined as someone who does not like or is prejudiced against women.  This term is regularly hurled at anyone who tries to repeal federal funding for Planned Parenthood or objects to their selling for profit, murdered baby parts.  Ironically, anyone who tries to represent the rights of unborn baby girls gets no brownie points this side of heaven.

xenophobe:  Intense dislike or fear of folks from other countries. Anyone advocating for secure borders is immediately smacked with this label and additionally dubbed a racist or a bigot.  One can love people of other countries and respect them and their culture and still believe that they ought to make application to come into the country legally.

Islamaphobe:  Someone who fears Muslims or those that follow Islam.  Americans have a hard time with this one because it seems unfair.  We like to be fair and we like to wave our “freedom of religion” and melting pot credentials. However, unlike Christianity, Judaism, or most other isms, Islam’s religio/militaristic teachings the belief and intention to have world wide domination of Islam, and rule with Sharia Law.   It is wise to be wary and limit immigration of the followers of Islam. Europe is now reaping the wild wind of their own lax immigration policies.  Not all Muslims follow “radical” or real Islam however the percentage who do are extremely dangerous to any freedom minded, peace loving society. Islamic leaders repeatedly state their desire to destroy Israel, our ally and the only democracy in the Mid-East. ( Psalm 122:6; Genesis 12: 3)

Where Politics meet Religion:

While these political ideals often cross-pollinate it is important to know your history to prevent falling into traps which have failed spectacularly in other times and places.  It is also salient to note: One can be patriotic and love their country, support the ideal of a colorblind police force and the idea of a strong military without being a fascist.  One can promote favorable trade deals without being a Nationalist or Protectionist thug.  Those who value individual liberty and constitutional restrictions against Orwellian “Big Brother” intrusiveness should be valued as Patriots and Watchmen on the walls – not ignorant “Deplorables”, clinging to our guns and Bibles!

Somehow, Americans are growing comfortable with the incremental mission creep of  Federal Government- believing they hold the answer to any woe, and every issue.  From Cradle to Grave only this nanny state is qualified to sustain us and we, in turn must gladly hand over greater portions of our hard earned cash and liberties for that dubious privilege.

Ironically, the further we goose-step away from those wonderfully crafted documents  designed to preserve our freedoms and skip toward “progressive” socialism Americans appear completely oblivious to the fact they are losing the very “thing” that made them unique.

While I agree Americans should rigorously guard their rights: I have real concerns that some have confused Anarchy with Civil Liberties without the understanding that such disparate actions lead to very different places. It is increasingly common to see ridiculous demonstrations of violent rebellion, lawlessness and disrespect to authority.  Is a call for mayhem and civil unrest at the upcoming inauguration truly reasonable following a democratically held national election? Is the clarion call to march in  large cities across this country in support of abortion “rights” on January 21st a valid expression of true personal liberties? The Bible assures us that the Lord hears the cry of innocent blood. Murder of the innocent is a very big deal and included in the 10 Commandments. To nationally endorse it and the church, as a whole, to look the other way is reprehensible!  Beyond the spiritual darkness summoned by this practice, I have real concerns that we are prostituting our hard-won freedoms by such supportive marches. Who will March and support the Civil Rights of the murdered babies who will never live to embrace their own “Women’s Rights”?

Why is there a hue and cry over the repeal of a failed healthcare policy which no one can afford and has deductibles so astronomical no one can use them?  I understand the desire for affordable healthcare. I am not convinced that it is within the prevue of government to provide or guarantee, but let us set that aside for now. ACA is the perfect illustration of the chaos stirred anytime government gains control.   Governments are not in business to produce anything.  They have no paradigm nor incentive for efficiency. They have, however, snookered the public into believing they are!  Wholesale intrusiveness is not merely bad ideologically, but is not sustainable and the 20 Trillion dollar national debt is proof in the pudding!

Wanting to enforce a country’s border sanctity should not be a radical fringe idea in a post 9-11 world.  Nor is a reluctance to import thousands of immigrants from war torn portions of the Mid East, who cannot be vetted. It seems a basic, lowest common denominator for the safety of those already here. The Mid East situation is indisputably,really bad. This ought not necessarily translate into residency or citizenship as an automatic perk.  Surely help, nearer their country, with financial aid of oil rich nations is a reasonable option. When the conflict ends they can go home and rebuild.

Let all Americans be cautious of labeling the brash or rude with the hideous brush of Stalin or Hitler just because you don’t like someone’s style.  Stalin brutally killed upwards of 20 million of his very own citizenry and Hitler tried to exterminate the Jewish race and conquer the world.  Try to keep things in perspective unless and until someone qualifies for membership into that exclusive club.

There has never in the history of this country been a perfect President of the United States. We’ve had lawyers, professors, gentlemen farmers, slave holders, professional politicians, womanizers, diplomats and generals leading our country at various times. Like them or not we are called ( 1 Tim 2:1-4; Proverbs 21:1; Romans 13:1;1 Peter 2:17) to pray for our national leadership: that they would be given wisdom and Godly revelation and a hedge of protection. They need it and it is difficult to despise someone that you are lifting up in prayer on a daily basis!

 Now we have a builder-business man who doesn’t play by the usual rules and is not fettered by political correctness. It may be wildly uncomfortable, even for those in his own party,  but the choice has now been made and it’s time to get to work.  These are serious times and there are serious issues to be tackled.

If one can’t support the choice at least respect the office.  I think we can all agree that Trump is good at building things.  What say we give him that chance while we pray for for our country!

 

 

 

 

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New Year-New Fire-Fresh Oil

As I write this blog post we are several days into Hanukkah, the festival of lights.  I have written about Hanukkah and it’s meaning in past years so I will only say that it is an incredible memorial of the essential miracle-working power of the Holy Spirit which we would all do well to remember in our day to day lives.

Scripture tells us that today,  we are the temple of the Holy Spirit.(1 Cor.6:19-20)  We carry that sanctified oil of the spirit within us.  The Menorah Shamash- the center candle- the servant candle used to light each candle through out the week- is a beautiful symbol of Messiah Jesus who the writer John calls the Light of the World. In the original story, the precious sanctified oil was necessary to light the  large candle stand within the Holy Place. It was to burn 24 hours a day the solo illumination in a dark tabernacle of precious symbols pointing to the coming Messiah.

That oil, a picture of the Holy Spirit is still as essential today as it was at the original Hanukkah, to cleanse and prepare the temple after the defilement wrought by Antiochus Epiphanes of the Seleucid Empire way back in 171 BC.  We, as a flawed but forgiven, redeemed priesthood of believers, are called to carry the Light of the World, the Gospel message through a filthy and dark world.  We must depend on a constant topping off, relying on the cleansing work of this miracle working anointing oil to keep ourselves sanctified for worship and empowered for that ministry.

As I look toward 2017 I want to really hone in with Feverseason.com on the prophetic. We have all prayed our way through a nasty election and should not lessen those important efforts going forward. These are perilous and historic times!  As we approach the end of the holiday season and an exhausting personal year, I am ready for a fresh anointing.  I am praying for MORE! I crave that fire of the Holy Spirit the Lord has shown me in my dreams and am hungry for the heat of it.   I am truly excited by the signs of the times I see happening in the world and have a renewed drive to keep watching from the wall, teaching and sharing through this blog.  I am hoping that more of my readers will open up, ask questions, or ask for prayer needs and share openly what the Lord is doing in their lives.

I am excited by the many dreams the Lord is giving, not only to me, but to my friends  and associates-preparing and encouraging us for the job at hand and the times to come. I am looking forward to sharing many of those with you in coming weeks.  There is a balance needed which is often missed in our churches. We must continue to preach the Gospel of Salvation through Jesus but we must not ignore or neglect to teach the vital importance of his Holy Spirit.  His is the pictured oil that flows from the Heart of the Father, that promotes the Name of Jesus.  It is the Holy Spirit anointing which dedicates us for continued service and empowers the gifts and miracles which confirm that we serve the One True God and his name is Jesus.

Happy Hanukkah!

 

For further study:

Lev. 8:10-12, John 1:8-14; 1 Peter 2:9; Ephesians 5:16-20; Mark 16:15-20; Acts 1:4-8; Acts 19:2;  Revelation 19:10;   The Feasts of the Lord by Howard & Rosenthal.

 

 

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Your Christmas Card

I apologize for being randomly hit and miss with this blog of late. This time of year- in addition to the full load that we all already carry— so many voices are vying for time and attention that something invariably suffers. I have observed from personal experience that most often the one that gets edged out or set to the curb in our well-meaning Christmas hustle is Jesus and the true meaning of Christmas.

I won’t belabor you with the list of things I’m NOT doing this year in an effort to scale back the madness…but you should consider this your Christmas card!

Thinking I was ahead of the “Christmas game” after mailing out checks this year to the kids and unrepentantly, dropping out of the local Christmas Choir, I had today all slated for study and writing to my heart’s content. However, I awoke this morning to 8 inches of snow. I know we need the moisture and while I am very grateful that it wasn’t the 2 feet of white stuff some sources were predicting, it has still completely altered my plans.

This is not the fluffy stuff one can sweep off the porch with a stiff broom. Oh no, this is the freakishly heavy, “cement” snow. It beautifully bows the evergreen branches and glistens on the terraced expanse of steps staggered from my porch to the driveway level and artfully conceals a deadly layer of ice. I will let Mr. Moore bust out the snow blower and deal with the quarter mile slalom we call our driveway while I get the steps and walkway cleared. I can hear the walkway mocking me as I drink my coffee and wonder if my health insurance premiums are up to date.

It will take the better part of the day to accomplish this monumental feat. If no one slips a disc, or has a heart attack we have been invited to a Solstice Party tonight. I’m not sure what this is. It sounds vaguely pagan, making me think of yule logs, or Stonehenge and a bunch of druids. It certainly establishes my earlier point of Jesus being set to the proverbial curb. Additionally, it is a “pot-luck” solstice party so I have to come up with a semi-tasty dish to drag along for the experience. I’m not sure what is appropriate “Solstice Party” fare might be: Moon Pies?

Second cup of coffee at 8:45 and it has begun to snow again. Suddenly I am thinking a Christmas trip to Tucson to visit the grandkids may not have been a bad idea!

Here’s the bottom line, my friends. It isn’t about the stack of gifts you get or give, how tall the tree or elaborate the menu at your Christmas gathering. It isn’t about the parties or programs you attend. It isn’t how much money you have or don’t have or how happy you are at any given moment. It shouldn’t even be about a specific time of year. Jesus needs to be the focus of our lives and the underlying theme of our chatter. His love and compassion need to be the melody line flowing through us day in and day out. That testimony of Jesus’ power and wonder in our lives needs to be growing weightier all the time. All the time! (If it isn’t, I recommend you evaluate some serious things and see what’s out of whack.)

We all live, work and mingle with those that are lost and don’t even know it. It is all too easy to fall into that trap that we have all the time in the world to share with or impact those “druids” in our sphere of influence. Mingled with hectic lives perhaps we worry that someone may be offended, ridicule or beliefs, or that it could cost us our livelihood or status or create a kerfuffle at the water cooler or dinner party. Valid considerations. But here’s the deal. As Christians, we are all called, and chosen to pick up this amazing gift we received and give it away over and over and over- and to do so faithfully. (Rev. 17:14)

Some deliver the necessary “Jesus” message but forget the deep, supernatural love that it ought to be wrapped in. It isn’t merely my motive to offer an alternate route to someone so that they don’t go to hell. This is the ultimate Love Story. It is the Story of Jesus and His redeeming blood paid on the cross to buy us back from that scary, inevitable, eternal end that is the true Christmas story. He also purchased for us the opportunity for real-live relationship with Messiah- with the King of Kings!

It is only when we mix that wonderful, redemptive salvation plan with his power of the Holy Spirit that the lightbulb clicks on, and sparks fly, and the whole “Christian thing” begins to wake up, move and make sense! This isn’t merely an alternative philosophy in a world where many philosophic voices scramble for equal recognition. No, Jesus gifted us the Holy Spirit to powerfully show folks that He is whom he claimed to be. By proxy we now have His authority. Now, and only now, are we fully enabled to miraculously impact a dark and dying world with this JOY TO THE WORLD.

At any time of the year, on any day of the week we are equipped to deliver a personal love note from Him- not only with the Good News- but, every single time we heal someone who thought they would always be wheezing from Asthma or debilitated, in darkness from horrible migraines. It’s a liberating, Jesus love song of freedom each time we teach someone and lead them thru deliverance from spirits of addiction or anxiety. It’s a specific, personalized love letter to give to those broken in loneliness, believing a lie that they are unlovable: not worthy, or special or damaged goods. And on it goes….where ever He leads. (Matt. 28:18-20)

People, we must fall in love with His full message of Love all over again (Rev.2:4-5), and not only can we impact our families and friends but we can snatch back our country and change the world. That is our daily Christmas Card—It is ALL about the Joy!

 

 

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The One the Wolves Pulled Down

I awoke in the night to the sound of coyotes yipping and howling incessantly to one another. There are wild things that roam in the night just over the hill or back in the tree line, ever on the watch for their next meal. wolves-8They may be feeding on bunnies or they may get together in a pack and take down an elk.  It’s what they do and they do it well.  This cold night choir was a visceral reminder that no matter what our day to day lives look like in the natural: there is a wild and vicious supernatural enemy which dogs our trail and waits for a straggler to stumble and fall behind.

 

I have a good friend who sings sad songs around the campfire and he sometimes sings an old Garth Brooks tune you may recall entitled, The One the Wolves pulled Down. In the song it wasn’t the lazy and good for nothing people he sang about.  It was solid, hard working, good people who couldn’t withstand the hardships of weather or circumstance as they farmed and ranched and the “wolves” of winter pulled them down.

In real life we can see those awful circumstances of financial stress, job loss or marital failures as heartbreaking but often don’t associate such real life happenings with the Spiritual or supernatural realm.  Somehow, if it doesn’t happen on Sunday morning while  occupying a church pew then it doesn’t fall into a mental “spiritual” file folder. The other 6 days a week in our  work-a-day minds, it’s just the way things are. Win some, lose some.  A Darwinian survival of the fittest attitude (with compassion, of course!) prevails until it is you or your children or friends pulled down by the wolves.  What is our defense?  How do we wolf proof ourselves and teach others to do the same?

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We all know that belief in Jesus is essential to eternal life but often don’t see much actual relevance to this life we are living on this side of eternity!  Many however, completed this initial step of faith, perhaps at a very young age and were never set on the path of studious discipleship really learning the ins and outs of the real power and protections available to them as Believing Christians.  Without this foundational, on-going increase of Biblical education folks erroneously assume that’s all there is and that’s all they needed to do.  With this eternal destination problem solved, the new recruit is cut free to go merrily thru life perhaps joining with the herd on Sunday Mornings for an uplifting sermon and a donut.

A firearm is a powerful weapon.  Whether a long rifle or a handgun, with it I am able to potentially protect and feed my family. However, I need training and practice with that weapon in order to know it’s potential, how it operates, how to care for it and take responsibility for it’s use. We have all heard sad stories of kids who somehow got hold of a weapon and killed themselves or others goofing around with a loaded firearm.  It isn’t the firearm that was the issue.  It was the fact that unbeknownst to this individual they got their hands on something very powerful and had no understanding of the potential power or dangers of what they were grasping.  Certainly this is a cautionary tale regarding guns and ammo.  But, it is much the same thing with our spiritual lives.  Somehow, Christians have forgotten that their Faith is intended not as a Sunday Morning pastime or club membership of “Nice People.” Faith in Jesus as Messiah and King it is an entre to an essential, life-giving,  power-packed way of life that has the potential of changing the world and to snatch those stumbling in darkness and bring into Light and Life!  Success requires training, understanding and obedience to the entire manual.  Not being in possession of these assets leaves one at a dangerous disadvantage.

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We must also realize this full inheritance of powerful knowledge makes us a serious target to the “wolves”.  ( Let me add here, that they, the demonic “wolves” have no power over me or mine unless I cede it to them in ignorance or stupidity.)  These wolves have no real concerns about the viability of those entrenched in satisfaction or mediocrity snoozing thru a quick sermon only to retreat to a leisurely football Sunday afternoon. They will happily go after anyone but really want to pull down the ones that are activated.

The followers of Jesus who really “get the vision”, who are called and come to action with the seeds and the sword are the “dangerous” ones the wolves will watch, awaiting their opportunity.

With awareness and understanding that there truly is a real, supernatural enemy, our mission then must come with a continual need for filling and re-filling of the Holy Spirit.  Without a complete reliance on this anointing you will inevitably grow exhausted “planting seeds” in your own strength. Many go down under the power of intimidation, sidelined by the cares of this world, or be tripped up in a net of addiction or adultery.  Others unschooled in their Royal Authority may step off path into the weeds of compromise or be ripped asunder by those operating under powerful controlling or religious spirits.

How many pastors and leaders come in and out  of ministry in the space of 5 years?  Bypassing the book of Acts, Seminary and Bible School taught them that they have all the Holy Spirit they ever required when they accepted Christ as Savior .  Unwittingly they skip onto the battlefield offering Salvation in Jesus yet armed only with a heart for change, a true compassion and love for people and no knowledge of the supernatural realities in play.  Inadequately armed against a savage and hateful foe they go down (with salvation intact) but mortally wounded, shredded on the field.  Sadly, many never understand this missing battle component, and worn down and discouraged assume that God is powerless, uncaring or irrelevant.

 

Satan is desperate to keep the Church unschooled, powerless, resisting the full scriptural truth of the Holy Spirit.  Without His anointing we are easy pickings.  Without the full armor we stumble or become wounded , paralyzed with fear and easy prey for the wolves who salivate over the herd. (1 Peter 5:8)  Without the compounded power of agreement within the Body of Christian believers we begin to have a straggler mentality.  We need that co-dependence on other believers and their special gifts and offices operating in a true first church community.  Paul tells us this is especially important as we near the end times. ( Hebrews 10:25)wolves-10

Christians, be armed and dangerous with a full understanding of what lies ahead. Without the gifts of the Holy Spirit, you will never see these “spiritual” wolves before it is too late.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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The Wonky Birdbath

The big concrete birdbath in my yard looks solid. It is solid. The big fluted bowl sets sturdily on a stout, yet artful pedestal and looks substantial and immovable. However, I have noticed since my arrival a few years ago, the entire thing is listing to the starboard like a ship taking on water in a stormy sea. The tilt of the Moore family birdbath has rendered it practically useless and only a cup or two of water would remain in the darn thing to help any thirsty bird who happened by.

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Upon closer inspection the problem was clear. The birdbath was sitting on a bed of topsoil, wood chips and pine needles rather than rock. It was destined to be wonky- and get wonkier- because it wasn’t resting on anything solid. No matter how sturdy a vessel may look to the naked eye and regardless how level it initially was upon installation, if not situated on bedrock or a firm foundation, eventually winds and inclement weather will  start breaking things down, erosion will begin to have an effect and soon birdbaths (and lives) will start to breakdown and list starboard or port side.

It took a little teamwork but my husband and I realigned the unwieldy, extremely heavy birdbath, backfilled with dirt to level the ground, and set the entire thing on a flagstone. Getting the foundation right set the entire thing straight and within minutes the big bowl was filled and a shocking number of birds immediately began to gather and drink.

Aside from a foundation on the Word of God, we may entertain some nebulous idea that one can control or at least keep the lid on our inevitably messy lives by compartmentalizing our stuff. It is all too easy to pigeonhole various areas of our particular world: Marriage, relationships, jobs, finances, entertainment, politics, education and what we really live versus what the Word or the world says. Birdbaths don’t move from a firm foundation but people surely can and do.

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We may be dismayed at the enormity of issues and swinging volatility of politics (certainly a good example in the wake of the recent presidential free-for-all) or current career prospects and consequently shelve introspection, running to the safety of an escapist novel, football game, hobby or movie. Often the tricky currents of marriage causes participants to abdicate and focus entirely on parental priorities instead- or cling to the company or accolades of friends who would like to see your life as wonky and uncertain as their own.

Sometimes the pain or chaos of relationship or family baggage drives us to the sheltered shores of career tunnel-vision and the perceived financial surety of a job well done. The ease of a controlled environment where numbers add up, expectations are defined with few surprises and a paycheck every two weeks lures many to that safety zone.

You get what I’m saying. None of these scenarios are particularly bad. Everyone appreciates a place where the waters are smooth, easy and predictable. But if the foundation is not balanced and solid, running to alternate shelter in any of these little boxes will eventually throw the birdbath of your life and that of your family out of whack. With every rain the water splashes out and begins to erode your shifting, muddy base. Soon, what was first a gentle tilt is now a precarious angle of no return. The first blast of winter wind is going to blow the whole thing over and what was perceived as stalwart and immovable has cracks that can never be repaired.

I’m a Christian blogger and my audience is generally one with at least a basic knowledge of the Word of God. However, over time the world has infected the Christian, Biblical worldview and message.  Full Gospel truth, over time and under the influence of a dark world, has given way to watered down theology, situational ethics and blindness to sin. Christian believers who don’t study the Bible for themselves have left many oblivious, unaware and possibly uncaring they have ventured far from biblical True North.

We are not called to look like the world. We are not called to agree with people and be liked, and get along and compromise. We are called to love those people we work alongside, and live in the midst of. However, we ARE called to be Salt and Light to them. We are called to deliver a message, HIS MESSAGE with power and authority. Everyone needs Jesus.  Everyone needs to hear about his love!! Every single one.  My bowl full of water needs to be totally full so that I can offer that to everyone I encounter. It is not to be filled with anything but water. Jesus sent us out with the Gospel of the Kingdom, to preach it, using it to heal the sick and cast out the demonic in no particular order.  We are called to put on the righteousness of Christ because we have none of our own.  We are to wear armor because we carry vital refreshing water to an active battle-field. If our foundation is not sure nothing is going to work well.

birdbath-1 Let’s get foundational: Are you saved? If you were to die today do you KNOW that you are going to heaven and will spend eternity with The Lord? Lots of pews are filled with people who come every Sunday who never hear specifically that they need to make a public profession of faith and be baptized in water, and maintain a true, ongoing actual relationship with Him. If you wandered off and got lost or disillusioned?—well, it’s getting late and its time to come on home.

Have you received the baptism in the Holy Spirit? Acts 19:2– The first church taught that there are two separate steps to take when becoming a believer, one is for salvation, and there is salvation in no other name but Jesus. Please don’t misunderstand me. Folks often like to think that I am saying they are not saved and not really a Christian. Not at all.  Saved is very different than being empowered. If you are not seeing the relevant big stuff, the power stuff we see Jesus doing and that was recorded in scripture which changed the world then your birdbath might be a little wonky!

That next critical step many have abandoned is that of asking for the Holy Spirit to fill you. In the book of Acts, the people gathered to lay hands of new Believers to receive the power of the Holy Spirit. Do not miss this step. If you have been a Christian for 5 minutes or 50 years you need to now, take this step in obedience. Don’t let anyone tell you that it isn’t important, not needed any longer or that you “got all the Holy Spirit you needed the day you were saved.” This stuff was foundational Christian pre-school, basic ABC’s in the Bible and we’ve abandoned it in many circles. This is scary and it’s dangerous.

We must have this Holy Spirit power to accomplish what Jesus tasked us to do. If you are saved but lacking the Holy Spirit filling then your birdbath is whonky. It is tipping and not holding the precious water you so desperately need to serve yourself, your family and others.

Jesus is our Rock. Our lives, every single aspect of our complicated, messy lives needs to set squarely in obedience to him and be viewed only from HIS foundational cornerstone. Christians like to think of “we versus them” or the unsaved. I am not responsible for the unsaved other than to love and be willing to share the Good News. However, often we neglect to take the hard and regular evaluating look necessary to make sure that we, our families, our church families and pastors are completely level and sitting solidly on that flagstone of Truth. Sometimes when we see that we have erred in our doctrine we lack the wherewithal, the spiritual gumption, to do the uncomfortable repentance work to lug our unwieldy birdbath back to a solid standing that is total agreement with the Word.

We are beginning to see those first blasts of prophetic, end-time chill winds blowing. Is your birdbath square and level? Is your bowl of water full to take care of the wildlife when the weather shifts?

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Resources for further study:

I have several tabs on this website entitled Holy Spirit 101 & 102 which are chock full of details and references.

I highly recommend the book by pastor Bill Johnson entitled When Heaven Invades Earth.  It changed my life and made a lot of puzzling pieces fall into place. Available on Amazon.com and Christianbooks.com

Most of us are very familiar with the Gospels outlining the life and times of Jesus but many are less familiar with the Book of Acts.  I encourage you, as my good friend and brother in Christ, Chuck Chetwin, likes to tell people, ” Read Acts 3 times and call me in the morning!”  I encourage you to just read it.  Not with the Bible notes, references or concordance, just read it.  It means what it says and it isn’t overly long or tricky, one doesn’t need to be a Greek scholar to see it for the Holy Spirit primer it truly was intended to be.

 

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Staked Plains of the Comanche

With only days until the election the Lord gave me a word: “Staked Plains.”

This is not an unknown term to me. As a Texas native I grew up on stories of the Comanche. They were a wild and ferocious tribe renowned for their expert horsemanship, who didn’t play very well with others. Fictional stories of the Comanche Indians were nothing compared to the true tales of their raids recorded in early Texas history.

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The Staked Plains, or Llano Estacado, refers to land the Comanche claimed early in the 18th Century. The “Staked” area which the ranging Comanche claimed and traversed is huge encompassing 44 counties in the West Texas panhandle, Oklahoma and Eastern New Mexico they would raid well out of their stomping grounds, then return to disappear into the vast grasslands, seemingly devoid of trees, water or landmarks, where few were willing to follow for reprisals. Robert G. Carter described it in 1871 while pursuing Quanah Parker with Ranald S. Mackensie, “…all were over and out of the canyon upon what appeared to be a vast, almost illimitable expanse of prairie. As far as the eye could reach, not a bush or tree, a twig or stone, not an object of any kind or a living thing, was in sight. It stretched out before us-one uninterrupted plain, only to be compared to the ocean in its vastness.”

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The term “staked plains” can be traced to several roots. One is geological referencing the palisaded rock formations that line the uplifted geologic table rock, revealing escarpments which look like a fort or palisade walls in many areas where the uplift is obvious. Another meaning is the historic reference which recalls that the endless grasslands were marked with a series of long stakes or poles. The poles purportedly marked the Spanish Trail from South Central Texas to Santa Fe to lead those “in the know” from waterhole to waterhole in grasslands with extremely limited resources.

While it is unclear what these poles looked like or how closely they were positioned, this line of visible stakes were certainly a well-known warning sign to any wandering tribes or sod- busting pioneer letting them know they had entered into the plains territory claimed by the Comanche.

Now, perhaps by now you are saying to yourself, this is all very interesting Miss Sally but what does it have to do with the price of rice in China? Good Question. I hadn’t given any thought about Comanche’s or Staked Plains in many years- Not part of my day-to-day ruminations. However, last week as I was driving along, the term “staked plains” dropped with clarity into my head. The Holy Spirit regularly drops little pearls into my head to support this blog. When I receive one, I pay attention.

I began to ponder and pray about this and wonder what this term, “Staked Plains” was all about. I’ll break it down the way He led me through it:

The Llano Estacado is essentially an enormously large flat table-rock formation that has been lifted up. High and lifted up. Ok, moving on:

The Comanche were a small independent tribe of very focused warriors. They did not compromise. They did not back down and they did not change to suit the times. For a variety of reasons, their neighbors knew who they were and respected their power.

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The Comanche “staked the plains” to clearly mark and identify their established territory to outsiders. They claimed it and defended it and held it. The Comanche didn’t stay put there in the safe lands. They could send out hunting or raiding parties who then returned to disappear into those deep invisible canyons of the Palo Duro to re-group and recharge.

These stakes which marked ownership of the land also led those who followed these tall poles to the watering places which were not obvious in the arid grasslands. Without the clear markings chances were good that they may lose their way in the wilderness and perish from lack of water.

While this example can only be carried so far, and is not intended as a digression about indigenous peoples or how mistreated they were by white folks. This term is an interesting pearl to now apply to our lives and examine here on the cusp of this election.

10410568_796008517134442_4638591922685716274_nBelievers, true believers, need to clearly stake their territory. We can view this personally or broaden our horizons to see the National slide from God over the years as erosion and encroachment into our “territory.” Either way, a Stake or Pole is a bold statement of ownership. This area of influence/ property/land as it pertains to Christians, is owned and controlled and under the dominion of a Child of the King. People who wander into my area need to know, in no uncertain terms, they have entered sacred ground. This territory is anointed, owned and operated by the Messiah. Unlike the Comanche who are reputed to have captured and tortured folks who entered their Staked Plains, my sphere of influence is Holy Spirit dominated and should have a powerful and captivating effect of a different sort. These sentiments stated, often and loudly, with other like- minded, dedicated Believers will exponentially ramp up the size of our real estate signage!

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Rushing Waters

There should be no compromise with the darkness from the outside world. No ignorance or disinterest in the things of God. It is our responsibility, in tandem with the Church, to pronounce the Legacy of our Staked Plains to our children and grandchildren and to those we encounter along life’s path. It is non-optional.

The stakes driven into the grasslands of the disorienting Llano Estacado were a clear sign of ownership, but they were also signposts to life-giving resources—water. The Indians of that day knew they could follow those posts to the hidden rare sources of water. Likewise, the Holy Spirit urges us to be cognizant of the signs and the Word, He wants to lead us via those stakes from pool to pool….from glory to glory.

Just as the un-indoctrinated on the Plains in the 19th century wouldn’t see the poles if they didn’t know to look. Without that critical knowledge one could wander, hopelessly lost and thirsty. I don’t think it’s unreasonable to say one must know the Lord, and be dependent on the Holy Spirit to recognize His daily, life-giving trail. You have to be actively seeking the refreshment He offers. Christianity is not a walk down the aisle as a kid and I’m done kind of thing. It’s a life-long active relationship. It’s a reliance on the power derived from a living, breathing, resurrected Lord. Once we forget the importance of those Biblical Stakes, and see no constant need to draw from those pools, it becomes increasingly easy to be deceived, to seek wrong priorities and follow blithely after corrupt leaders.

Our lives and inheritance, need to be staked deeply on the Word of God. I believe no matter who wins, this presidential election will usher in great change for our nation. One candidate offers a continuation of a determined march toward socialism and idolatrous, secular humanism. The other offers an opportunity, a chance, and a stated willingness to plug the gaping hole in our sinking national boat.

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Spiritually, Believers need remain aware of the times. We must continue preparing for the End Times Harvest. From our Staked Plains, our expectation and readiness should be to ride up out of the wilderness of dying grasslands of the world on a tide of revival and power so amazing that we won’t have time nor inclination to be fearful of oppositional rising darkness. We should be prepared and we MUST Stake our Plains!

Too often today people can park in our churches and never hear Truth. Too often folks might work beside us, or live next door and never know that we are bearers of precious life-giving news. Too often our friends, neighbors and loved ones, suffer and even die because we are too timid to tell them that healing and deliverance are for today. Too often we tip-toe invisibly along the path of least resistance, self-satisfied with our own salvation and our personal relationship with Jesus, but have forgotten we were called to powerfully use it, share it and that full body armor would be essential against real supernatural enemies of darkness.thY7H0X6RR

Times are critical, my friends. On the brink of a critical election we must VOTE for the party that best represents the principles found in the Bible. Trump may be imperfect and controversial but he has publically promised to defend the churches from government persecution and he has publically come out against abortion and especially last minute, late-term abortion. He has publically stated that with the appointment of his published nominees for the Supreme Court that he will endeavor to repeal Roe vs. Wade. He promises to do something about our borders and to resolve the debt crisis which enslaves us and the generations to come to foreign powers.

People, now is the time to drive the stakes deep and boldly defend our God given territory. Have you driven a stake in the ground and declared that this is it, no retreat, no surrender? Do you believe that Jesus was the Messiah? That He really was who he claimed to be? Are you ferocious in your love for the unsaved? Are you telling others about the water holes and how to find them?

Without carrying this Indian metaphor too far, I want to note that they didn’t stay still. Their Comanche lifestyle was a mobile guerrilla force. They did not yearn for a house in the suburbs with a new car in the garage. The objective was to keep on the move, to follow the buffalo and extend their area of influence.comanche-warriors

I’m not advocating that we drag our teepee behind us, or tie our opponents to ant hills as we meander around the countryside. I am advocating the Biblical principle of trusting the Lord for our needs, and to be extremely sensitive to the Holy Spirit in these prophetic times; and be willing to go where He leads, and stop when He tells you to. Like Phillip and the Ethiopian eunuch in the book of Acts. If Phillip had not been paying attention, the gospel may not have made it to Ethiopia as quickly as it did. We are pilgrims passing through and the stakes we drive into this land are forged in heaven.

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I believe that the Holy Spirit gave me the word “Staked Plains” to remind me that we are on a battle field. We as American believers have given up much ground over the past 50 years without a fight, without a whimper. We ceded the land that the Lord has entrusted us with and it must stop. As the world chipped away at our foundation, the church sat silently as Prayer left our schools. We didn’t make a peep as Abortion laws were passed and expanded. 60 million dead babies are an enormous and constant blood sacrifice that has attracted and honored the demonic. Knowing we were created in His image, we stood in silence as marriage and gender identification has been redefined and crammed down our throats. Alarmingly, acceptance of all this has gained footing even in Christian circles. Our “loving tolerance” has become a condoning acceptance which no longer recognizes sin as abhorrent before Almighty God.

This election is a last opportunity to clean out the corruption that has infected our government, stem the tide, to turn the ship. We must honor the Stakes driven into this land by our Godly forefathers. We must never lose sight of those stakes leading us to the deep pools necessary to sustain us— if we only remember to honor and follow them.

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Take the next 5 days to drive your Stakes deep- in His authority- and pray for America.

 

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String of Pearls

My grandfather was the sweetest man.  Roy Moreland was tall and lanky, and kind of quiet. I can’t recall a time when he wasn’t smiling or making others do the same.string-of-peals-1

He always could be counted on to keep the grandchildren laughing by telling funny stories or threats of “counting our ribs.”  Any time of the year, when they would come to visit us in Dallas, he would spend hours each day walking many miles for his health and entertainment…or perhaps to avoid an ever-growing honey-do list composed by my grandmother.

He enjoyed his solitary walks, and while I’m sure he kept note of his surroundings, he would also, watch his feet. At the family dinner table each evening, he would report how much money he had discovered during his daily constitutional.  Lots of spare change seemed to always be in Granddaddy’s path.  He wasn’t particularly seeking it, but he would always pause and pick it up as he went along. As a little kid, this seemed magical and the sums, which often added up to several dollars, were magnificent and motivational to my young ears!string-of-pearls-2

The other day  I was looking back through a big ol’ pile of dream journals and notes- dating back to 2010. I was looking for something specific at the time- which I eventually found. During the massive review, I realized I had missed something rather startling.  Viewed individually I had seen the dreams one way, viewed as a whole, I was now seeing themes and commonalities I had, heretofore, overlooked.

My “Miss Sally” dream review was quite educational.  I noticed that from time to time in my dreams, I was actually offered, discovered or given, “pearls”. string-of-pearls-4  Not all the time, and not in any regular distribution, but often enough to now catch my attention.  Once I even received an entire “dream” necklace.

Please don’t misunderstand.  This isn’t a prideful observation, or a proclamation of any sort that “I’m so spiritual, the Lord is sending me spiritual pearls of wisdom.”   Like my Granddaddy in the 1960’s, just out for some exercise, watching the path, he came across items of value.  He wasn’t on a treasure hunt, he wasn’t out with a metal detector, or panning for gold.  He was a retired Entomologist, who was trying to stay in shape.  But, he was cognizant enough on his travels around the neighborhood to be watchful of his footing.  He noticed, as he walked, glints of quarters and nickels and dimes on the pavement, as well as the occasional dollar bill, and stooped down and collected it.

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Totally bypassing Miss Sally and her many foibles as I  snooze soundly; Dream Sally is actually paying attention! These pearls often were not the real focus of the message, but a little side treasure-bonus.  Once, while many other things were going on- a gigantic oyster opened up and a HUGE pearl was awaiting me as I walked by. I did note, each time I saw a pearl in a dream I’m moving, following, I’m watchful or seeking and I never pass it by un-noticed.string-of-pearls-6

I wish I could say the same thing about real life….but, Halleluiah, the Lord isn’t through with me yet!  The nice things about Dreams and Visions is that the Lord can skip over our objections, excuses or life’s many distractions and drop a large or small, fresh water or salt water- pearl of good stuff on us, which in wakeful reality we might just waltz right on by.

I told you all that- to tell you this: This very last day of the Feast of Tabernacles is a time of open heaven, of rejoicing for the Messianic King who is coming again soon.  As sunset approaches, this holiday is an actual pearl.  Jesus in scripture THE Pearl of Great Price of Matthew 12:45-46.string-of-pearls-10

The Feasts are not like an actual Thanksgiving Turkey day feast – but a “Hey, don’t miss it! Divine Appointment”.  These Big repetitive dates (which The Lord called HIS FEASTS) are all a  connected sequence of prophetic messages.  A fabulous string of  7 very large pearls for Believers- the Bride- to collect and thus avoid missing the first or second coming of Jesus, the Messiah- the Bridegroom.

Nothing, absolutely nothing, can be more important or carry more value than this particular string of pearls! No  current political drama or personal angst or travesty should overshadow the importance our carrying the message of  THE Pearl of Great Price.

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Pearl one is Passover the actual day that Jesus was crucified- the Lamb of God.  Pearl two, is the Feast of Unleavened Bread when Jesus was put in the Grave.  Pearl three represents the Feast of Firstfruits, three days later, when Jesus was raised from the dead by the Power of the Holy Spirit,  Pearl four, the Feast of Pentecost the fulfillment of Jesus’ Promise of the Holy Spirit being poured out with fire on the people in Jerusalem and beyond.

We ought to be annually expectant for the arrival of the next enormous pearls 5,6, & 7 which will complete our unfinished String of Pearls: The Feast of Trumpets,string-of-pearls-5 Yom Kippur and Feast of Tabernacles which are a bright visual  prophetic picture of the Rapture of the Church, Judgment of Nations and the establishment of  Messiah’s Kingdom. Every single one is a message and promise of JESUS.

As Believers, we should be keeping our eyes peeled for those expected and beautiful events- those pearls to roll into view.  This loosely strung- string of pearls analogy is also a reminder to Believers that time is ticking and we want everyone to receive that message, and to see those pearls that are already strung while there is STILL TIME.

These Good News pearls aren’t for keeping – they are to share and give away to as many people as will look at them.

What a tragedy if there is someone I know who never had an opportunity to hear this story or claim this treasure trove of pearls or recognize these prophetic blood-bought pictures. I can’t control who will accept the Pearls. With an ever shortening time, all I can do is keep watching for the King and  asking the Holy Spirit to lead me to the ones who are seeking that String of Pearls and pray you do the same.

string-of-pearls-8For further study: Leviticus 23, John 3:14-21; John 7:37-43, The Feasts of the Lord by Kevin Howard& Marvin Rosenthal.; Matt 13:45-46, Matthew 7:6; Rev. 21:21.  As I have stated in previous posts, there is not a more commonly discussed form of Godly communication than Dreams. Beginning in Genesis and continuing thru Revelation.  Godly dreams will always align with scripture.  If they don’t agree with the Word, then they are from a different source who loves to lie and counterfeit everything the Creator does.

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The Show to Come

I had a dream a few weeks ago, just at the end of September.  It was long and detailed and has been flirting at the edge of my consciousness ever since.Sleepers 2  Periodically, I come back to those carefully recorded “dream notes” and go over it all again, hoping the Holy Spirit will continue to reveal more fully the meaning of it all.

While I won’t share the entire thing at this juncture.  I will say that the  oft repeated phrase in the dream was “the show to come.”  In the dream, there was a lot going on- with most of it geared to the preparations for an exciting, soon-coming event.  The expectation and thrill was contagious.  In one of the scenes, I realized that my clothes were much too plain and ordinary for this event and so I unfurl my full length, voluminous skirt on the table and began to paint it with flowers.  I had a vague creative plan to start at the top with a narrow floral thing and broaden it as I swooped downward across the front– but as I picked up the brush, dipped it in the paint and got the project under way, it soon began to paint itself!painting-2

Without benefit of the unnecessary brush, pictures and shapes I could never imagine began to blossom amongst the simple flowers I had started to paint.  Eventually, the entire garment was completely, fully embellished, supernaturally in fantastic technicolor. I knew, in this dream that I had little to do with this project- but I was fully aware that it wouldn’t have happened had I not initially picked up that brush and begun to move.

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As so often happens in dreams: Then, I just knew somehow, that on top of all this color and beauty, I needed to splatter it all in bright blue paint.  As I did this, it splatted all over the beautiful fabric and all over me, and all over the people who were gathered around to watch as I decorated my outfit for this “show to come.”

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Dreams from God, just like those we see in the scripture are mysterious. As the most recorded means of communication between God and man in the Bible, from Genesis to Revelation, we should not be surprised to receive them and should treasure them when they come to us. Ordinarily, you have to sort them out. Sometimes with prayer the meaning can immediately jump out.  Sometimes, when reviewed many months or years later, the notes from a long ago dream may reveal something totally new to the recipient, even when we thought we had the meaning at the get-go!  Scripture tells us that in the end times that everyone is going to be receiving prophetic dreams and visions from the Holy Spirit- so it would behoove us to begin to be receptive and get around the learning curve on this topic. (Joel 2:28-29; Acts 2:16-18)

Tomorrow is the beginning of the Feast of Tabernacles.  One of those 7 feasts of the Lord which I often teach on from Leviticus 23.  I often say that these 7 Feasts are the framework or tent poles for the entire fabric of Messianic Prophecy. thN5ZJDNUK Tabernacles or Sukkot is without a doubt, the ultimate Show to Come.  It is the Feast that celebrates the restoration of the Messianic Kingdom.  It is a weeklong joyful party bookended by two Sabbath days..  At Yom Kippur He was our atoning Lamb.  At Sukkot Jesus is our Joy and he is our Sabbath Rest.  Everything, as one studies this amazing holiday, is wrapped in incredible Joy, celebration and light.  Jesus is the Light of the World!   I welcome you to go into the fall archives and read past posts from Tabernacles I have written if this is a topic new to you.

The “show to come” in my dream was not identified.  It could be preparation for the Rapture – the marriage supper of the Lamb or it could be some earthly extravaganza, of which I can only imagine.  I knew that I needed to be prepared, I knew everyone was extremely excited, I knew that I needed to be expectant, and, just like we read outlined in Matthew 22- I needed to have the appropriate clothing for this gig. Ultimately, I knew that without the bright blue spatter all over it, my outfit wasn’t complete.paint-4

Like Joseph’s coat of many colors in the Bible, a multi-colored garment can be a symbol of prophetic anointing or a representation of the Glory or Promise of The Lord, as we see with the rainbow to reassure Noah after the worldwide cleansing of the flood. It can be all of the above. Blue is a color of royalty and heavenly revelation.

I like the idea that I was tossing it around like confetti.  It stuck to me, to my clothing and got all over everyone that was near me.  Everyone was delighted to see the glorious splatter happen, and no one moved to wipe their faces or clean their clothes of these droplets in my dream. It fell like blessings.

There IS a show to come. The King is coming back and he’s coming soon. And while we wait for the ultimate show- every day should be “showtime” for each of us.  Who will notice our fabulous supernatural adornments, the unique heavenly colors emblazoned on our lives as we wait with expectation for Jesus to return as promised?  Who  in our sphere of influence will be hit with glorious, Holy Spirit spatter paint as we go about our day to day lives and accomplish what we are called to do – To preach the gospel of the Kingdom ( much more than salvation) as we cast out demons ( yes, Christians can have demons) and heal the sick!  We are each called and imbued to be a glorious, “package deal” while we await the fulfillment of these final three Feasts of the Lord: Trumpets, Yom Kippur and the Big #7– Tabernacles.

It IS all about the Joy!

th29CQNWITFor additional study:

The Divinity Code by Adam F Thompson and Adrian Beale; The Feasts of the Lord DVD’s by Mark Biltz; Mark 16:16-18, Matt. 10:1,8 ; the Book of Acts, Matthew 22.

Previous posts on The Feasts of the Lord available in the archives: Pulse Points, Fly Away Home, Escape Plan, Feast on , Countdown, The Big Picture, The Ad Man, Let the Shofar Blow, Masterpiece, Hamburgers, Huts and a Belated Blood Moon.

If you have been dreaming, would like to share it or just need some help or a sounding board, I am happy to help!

 

 

 

 

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Keep your eye on the ball

Many years ago, my sister, Amy and I took tennis lessons along with our good friends and neighbors, Sue and Nancy Tilley, at a nearby recreation center.  Dressed in our little white outfits, we learned the rules, practiced our volleys and backhand while endeavoring not to melt in the Dallas heat and humidity.tennis-lessons-2  While none of us were particularly athletic, these are fun memories. The only thing I recall with any clarity, these many years later, was the instructor repeatedly shouting, “Keep your eye on the ball!”

Falling sway to passing distractions makes it all too easy to lose sight of the ball, miss the advantage and, in nothing flat, lose the game.  “Keep your eye on the Ball” is a simple rule to stand you in good stead whether playing ping-pong or raising children.  It’s a valuable maxim if one is struggling to remain married or voting for a presidential candidate.  Keep your eye on the ball. Don’t lose sight of the real deal, the true issue on the clay courts of life!tennis-lesson-6

Thirty days out from the most pivotal presidential election in American history and a few days prior the second debate between the leading Presidential hopefuls, a video clip is released of Donald Trump, many years ago, having a private, vulgar conversation about women.

Defending indefensible behavior is a waste of energy.  He has apologized several times.  Does The Donald need his mouth washed out with soap?  Yes, indeed. This has been a big and hopefully educational,”shame on you!” moment from long ago.  I will suggest a remedial course in charm school  be wedged into his busy schedule!

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However, let us analyze a bit, before moving on. Since he has been running for this office for over a year, I find it extremely curious, and hope that you do as well, that only NOW are we beginning to see the resurrection of assorted damning clips or emails.  In a tight race, this video has conveniently and completely overshadowed the expected WikiLeaks email dump by the elusive Mr. Julian Assange; emails revealing Hillary Clinton’s true political leanings and extremely situational ethics.  The old girl just aced the serve, slamming that ball so fast and tight across the net Donald didn’t  even see it coming and it, ironically, hit him right in the family jewels!

I have seen lots of chatter this week from outraged Facebook folks or media pundits ranting about “objectification of women” and prevalent “rape culture.” thUQND4YMJ  If you have perchance, been in a coma or preoccupied with the weather channel all week, Mr. Trump, unaware he was being recorded, some 11 years ago, said women ( beautiful and often married, allowed him do whatever he liked ( this is the sanitized version) because he was a “star” and presumably filthy rich.  This is a grown man saying that he likes women and they like him. Tacky? Absolutely. Juvenile and crude?  Sadly, yes. Coincidental release….hardly.

We are seeing the reluctant Republican elite, at the publication of this story scream like little girls seeing their first mouse!  So horrified to hear cocky locker room talk, they are running from a nominee they never liked or understood, like rats from a burning ship.  In fact, it makes me wonder if they may be responsible or in cahoots?  We will likely never know. Yet, are they willing to throw a national election just because they are shocked or offended? Are you?

The Jeb Bushes and John Kasich’s are still stinging from the knowledge the john-kasichAmerican people didn’t want them, didn’t like them and did not want more of the same do-nothing politics. jeb-bush The Grand Ol’ Party despised Trump because he wouldn’t play by their intra-party rules, and his rhetoric threatens to rock the USS Status Quo.  Some of these Senators and Congressmen ( Democrats and Republicans) have been in Washington for over 50 years, enriching themselves, changing nothing, while America sinks lower into a morass of debt and decay. As a result, it is becoming more and more difficult to tell the difference between the parties.  People are frustrated, broke and mad. Trump gets that.  For whatever reason, he sees it, addressed it, and promised to fix it.  Trump has proposed change and finds himself in the unique position whereby he does not need to pimp himself out to big-dog puppet masters. Running, thus far, on his own money which he earned himself- he is not beholden to big donors and it scares the folks who are!

Did you miss the information recently released where Hillary Clinton accepted large sums of money as donations to her Clinton Foundation before seeing foreign supplicants when she served as Secretary of State?  This is much more serious than stupid, guy talk but nobody bats an eyelash. Washington politics are intrinsically toxic and corrupt and so deeply entrenched- nobody even cares.  If this doesn’t alarm you, it should.

Here is the ball. Don’t Blink: tennis-lesson-4 I hope you will take the message to heart because time is critical.  We have weeks to return the focus to real issues, where it needs to be.  You and  I are not shopping for a husband. I am not looking for someone to date my daughters, nor am I on a pastoral search committee.  This may come as a shock to my readers, but women have been throwing themselves at powerful, wealthy men since the dawn of time and that is unlikely to ever change.  Grown men, both rich and poor, anonymous or famous, Christian or Atheists will undoubtedly continue to behave badly and say stupid stuff regardless of political party, upbringing or objections on my part.  Only repentance and a continuing relationship with Jesus has the power to change peoples hearts and character.

Just a refresher in case you took your eye off the ball:  There is no argument. Mr. Trump is not a perfect man nor a perfect candidate. He is also not a perfectly scripted, professionally rehearsed politician.donald-trump-2  That’s not what America needs right now.  If I were looking for a potential soulmate from the Match.com dating pool, I would undoubtedly have a different set of traits on my “must have” list.   However, we are shopping for an effective President of the United States. We need someone who is confident no job is too big, or too hard to be tackled. We need someone unafraid to get in someone’s grill and tell them what needs to happen. We need someone who can bring in a job on time and under budget for a change. We need a negotiator with a big, Teddy Roosevelt-style stick.  This candidate will NOT be maintaining or complacent with Washington steam-rolling Politics, as usual. He has terrified the movers and shakers and they are after him now, with a vengeance.

Will he be a perfect president?  I’m not sure America has ever had a perfect president, so I’m not certain what that will look like until we get to the Millennium Kingdom.  Trump’s not perfect, but I’m praying for effective and frugal.   Trump is just learning to play this game and he seems to play best when everyone thinks he’s done.  We are down to the end of the match. It’s 40- Love.  It doesn’t matter what what he said over a decade ago in a stupid private conversation. That makes him human.  The critical BALL to watch is this and only this- he has identified essential priorities for our foundering country:

This is a battle for Supreme Court judges.  Trump HAS incredibly released his list of conservative folks that he would consider for the Supreme Court.  People who actually honor the Constitution. This is huge and completely unprecedented.  A BIG BALL for Christians and conservatives to focus on and keep lobbing it over the net to inform dumb people.

He launched his campaign with a promise of expeditiously securing our borders and doing something to control ILLEGAL immigration and eject criminals and gang members who have entered this country.  Why is this shocking to people that he wants to follow the laws that are already on our books?   Why is it bad or heartless to want to know exactly who is coming across our borders?  I keep my doors locked on my home–if you want to come in, you knock on the front door, tell me who you are and ask if you can visit.  This isn’t bigotry its common sense safety.

He has come out against partial birth abortion.  Can he get established legislation on abortion changed?  I don’t know, but nobody else has shown the spine to even try and perhaps he can keep abortion from being federally funded with my tax dollars.  Maybe it’s time for people to consider if we had not aborted over 60 million innocent, inconvenient lives since the mid 1970’s we would have that many more people paying taxes and funding Social Security in the 21st century. Ironic but true.

He backs Israel publically and isn’t afraid to say so. Well that’s refreshing! Aced it!

Trump wants to renegotiate trade deals that will bring GOOD jobs back to the US.  His recurrent theme is  turning the tide on $20 TRILLION DOLLAR national debt.   People must begin to grasp the serious consequences of rampant debt. Being a debtor nation has already eroded our international influence and ability to improve circumstances in this country.  Left unmended and unaddressed this debt will change life and prospects in America- not only for ourselves but for following precious generations.   There is no such thing as free college,  free healthcare or a free lunch.  Some day, some one, somewhere pays for every decision we make or don’t make in the voting booth.

Let us not forget, in the latest barrage of media smack-talk about Trump, that Hillary Clinton has said and done plenty of questionable stuff.  She has said shocking things herself that received little media coverage.  In an ABC News Interview in August 2014 Ronald Kessler author of First Family Detail  clinton-book-2-first-family-detailwrote of interviews with various Secret Service details guarding the first families over the decades.  He stated, by far, the worst detail agents identified was the ongoing duty attached to former first lady Hillary Clinton. “It shines a light on her character Kessler said.  ” She claims to be a champion of the little people and she’s going to help the middle class.  And in fact, she treats these people around her , who would lay down their lives for her, like sub-humans and I think voters need to consider that.”

More recently former Secret Service Agent, Gary J. Byrne who spent years on clinton-bookPresidential family duty during the Clinton years recently wrote in his 2016 released book, Crisis of Character, “Hillary Clinton is now poised to become the Democratic nominee for the President of the United States. However, she simply lacks the integrity and temperament to serve in the office.  From the bottom of my soul, I know this to be true- So I must speak out.”  Obviously, I don’t know the author, but his narrative rings true as he outlines horrible personal stories of the first lady’s treatment of her security detail that should curl your hair and make you wonder why on earth this woman is so angry.  I encourage you to read the excerpts available online or buy the whole thing.  You can’t make this kind of stuff up!

Over the years  everyone has seen Clinton lie about her lies and then lied to Congressional committees and the FBI while deleting emails and taking hammers to her lost electronic devices. If I had said and done a thimbleful of the things she has done, I’d be writing this blog from behind bars for a long, long time. American’s don’ t like double standards and I hope they see that she doesn’t have to play by the same rules as they do.

Keep your eye on the ball:  This election has two- and only two- viable candidates. Neither is up for the Goody-Two-Shoes, Good Behavior Award.  It isn’t pretty, but this is the ball  in play.  We have a Democratic candidate that proposes to maintain and enhance the programs, policies and expenditures of President Obama and another, who proposes to shake things up.trump-vs-clinton

If you decide to stay home because Trump has a potty mouth and years ago blurted something despicable– then by default, you will be voting for more of Obama’s globalist ideology and voting for bigger and bigger government with a side order of shrinking civil liberties.  You will own it.  Do not be deceived. Not voting in November is a vote FOR Hillary Clinton.  Voting for Gary Johnson or whatshername Stein or Bozo the Clown is a vote FOR Hillary Clinton. You may think you are standing on principal, retaining your delicate Christian sensibilities- but you will have helped to give us all Ms. Hillary R. Clinton, as well.

I have heard recently that Trump has become a Christian, making a heartfelt profession of faith.  I hope its true, but really, none of us know whether that is sincere or just rumors to assuage a jittery wing of the party. For pities sake, I have people in my own family who’s faith and eternal destination I am unsure of!   All I really know,  via publically stated stump speeches is at least he doesn’t despise Christians!!!!  Right now, that’s good enough for me- and sadly, a much better position than Believer’s have held for the past 8 years!

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Don’t let the repeated, sexy distractions the Clinton camp or the bloodsucking media gleefully lobbed over the net fool you.  Please don’t be that gullible.  He may be have a big mouth with a bigger ego, successful men often do.  We’ve had those fellows in the White House a few times and they’ve been surprisingly effective.

We have two choices before us and only two. This may be our last opportunity to stem the tide of sliding progressive socialism and preserve hard won liberties and opportunities for the next generations.   I’m looking for somebody who can FIX  real financial and temporal problems and get Congress off their collective fannies to get something accomplished and choose solid Supreme Court Justices. Justices whose influence will far outlast the fleshly, flawed big-mouthed but penitent Mr. Trump’s tenure in the Oval Office.

 

 

 

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Don’t lose the WOW!

A friend of mine that is not a believer, recently told me that I seemed really stressed out and intense of late.  This made me think a little more seriously about what and how I am living my life.

th (87) I am busy, as are we all.  I have a job, a blog, I read and track a lot of news sources.  Added to this, I have friends and extended family all of whom come with varying degree’s of melodrama on any given day.  Every one of us spins lots of plates and deals with a lot of things, which sadly, probably doesn’t stop until we die.

After some careful introspection it occurs to me that stress is not the same thing as worry.  That intensity is not necessarily an attitude of belligerence or anger. Sometimes our message or discussion of these times may (and probably should) instill fear in others who choose not to see what is happening around them. However, as a Christian it can also be easy to lose track of the track; To miss the forest for the trees so to speak.

th3HEBRZ7V If we lose sight of the joy of knowing Messiah because we have become totally focused on everything surrounding his return or the cares of this world then we have robbed the people in our sphere of influence of something critical.  We can become so intense in sharing the lateness of the hour, and the signs of the times with those who are not saved that we forget to impart the internal peace and joy of knowing the Savior in any hour.

On the brink of the 3 Fall Feasts of the Lord, we need to focus on our soon coming King.  He comes, this time, not as the suffering sacrificial Lamb, but as the Lion of the Tribe of Judah.  We should be watching for that arrival of the Bridegroom, our little lamps full of oil–in joyful anticipation.

In our 21st Century western culture we often confuse happiness with joy.  Joy as you may recall is a fruit of the Holy Spirit.  Happiness is circumstantial.  I got what I wanted for Christmas, so I am happy.  I received the job promotion that I was hoping for therefore I am happy.  Don’t misunderstand, Joy and Happiness may often walk hand in hand.  Joy in the Hebrew, and all through scripture is a euphemism for what comes to us because of relationship or position with the Lord.  (Nehemiah 8:10, Psalm 16:11 and many more.)

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Joy transcends situation or circumstance.  It is a function of my salvation and new-found status as a child of the King.  Messiah-Jesus Loves ME!  He redeemed me with his blood.  I now wear His righteousness.  I have THE JOY of the Lord.  I will spend eternity with Him.  Wow!  Joy encompasses the Wow.  As we go about our busy lives we must always remember to radiate that Wow in the midst of an increasingly dark and fearful world.

The Feast of Trumpets begins at sunset tonight.  The King is Coming!

 

References for further study:

2 John 12; Hebrews 12:2; Isaiah 9:3; Isaiah 12:3

Previous posts on the fall Feasts of the Lord for you to peruse if you are new to this site: Let the Shofar Blow, Fly away home, Masterpiece, Escape Plan,  The Awe of it all, The Day…There are probably more and all these posts will give you many references from scripture and books to build your knowledge.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Another Countdown

“Sally, what happened with the Shemitah?”  A curious acquaintance approached me at an art gallery gala the other evening, wanting to know why the sky had not fallen last year at the culmination of the Shemitah.  While I never predicted such a wholesale collapse of the economy on a certain day, I can see how folks could misconstrue, as some kind of “end-times astrology”, the blood moons and historic look-back at Israel and Shemitah postulation.   I took a few minutes in the midst of the fancy cheese and elegant artwork to give this friend ( and you) a quick overview of items I considered the result of incremental removal of our hedge of protection and blessing we have enjoyed in this country.

The stock market did take a big dive last fall.  It rallied ( and I’m glad) I’m hoping that we don’t have another crash in the next few weeks as the Jubilee closes- following the artificial heights induced by the IMF and our Federal quantitative easing. Sometimes when disparate things occur we don’t connect those dots as we do when the NASDAQ dramatically plummets.  For those who chose to look, recent headlines include: extended, deep drought, huge wildfires, increasing volcanic and earthquake activity, the selling of baby parts from abortion clinics without censure, A US treaty and lifting of UN sanctions with Iran, a sworn enemy of Israel,  alarming tensions with Russia, China and North Korea, incurable mosquito borne illnesses not to mention unprecedented flooding, rising racial and ethnic unrest as well as a rising spirit of  lawlessness.

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I am not predicting anything, but hurricane season is not over yet and we are about to embark on the first national election following recent un-Biblical Supreme Court decisions.  With something short of two weeks left in the Jubilee Year and in the absence of any measurable repentance of the Church in the United States, or national repentance- we, as Remnant Believer’s, need to be ready for anything!  I think it was Evangelist, Billy Graham who is quoted as saying if God doesn’t judge America he is going to have to apologize to Sodom and Gomorrah!

A brief review:

In the Old Testament the Lord told Moses to keep the 7th day “holy” with no work being done.  The 7th year was to have been a Sabbath year of rest, with the people resting, the land resting and debts released.  Every seventh, 7th year was a Shemittah Year where the land was restored to rightful owners, debts forgiven, slaves freed in addition to no crops being planted.  This 49th year of restoration was to be followed by the Jubilee year.  Leviticus 25:23 outlines the restoration of economic structure of Israel’s society as it had been when God brought them into the Promised Land.  Tribal identity was maintained, land remained in the hands of small landholders and people were set free to develop their own businesses.  Similarly, each of the 7 prophetic feasts from Passover thru the Feast of Tabernacles is a prophetic calendar of Messianic action. Each consecutive, 7th period of rest is a growing, expansive picture, eloquently describing the provision and peace beyond all understanding-of the coming Messianic Kingdom as well as the restoration of Israel.

The basis, I am sure, of my friend’s question at the Art Gallery is that in times past, the last day prior to the Seventh year cycle or the Jubilee- has often resulted in economic shaking and judgement of nations.  Following the Lord, as outlined in Deuteronomy 26-28,  would result in National blessing and provision beyond measure for His covenant people while disobedience, idol worship, giving their children over to the fire of Molech etc…and not letting the land rest (trusting that God would provide) would produce the OPPOSITE.  The recurrent Old Testament theme being that continued wandering or outright rebellion from the Lord results in growing warnings followed by gradual removal of the blessing.  We see that it took many years of rebellion in Judah before the Lord finally allowed the Babylonians to overrun the land, destroy the first Temple and take them captive for the exact number of  Sabbath years (70) they had failed to keep.

After a cursory study some may see the lack of catastrophic, civilization-ending events as proof that Godly covenant is no longer as persnickety as it was in Bible days; that faith as Karl Marx called it, really is merely the “opiate of the masses”. It could also mean that I am a false teacher or other Messianic Rabbi’s and Prophecy authors’s got things terribly wrong.

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I believe like the star of Bethlehem, or the sun standing still in Joshua 10:13 are just two examples of  amazing heavenly signs supported in scripture. The Lord blesses us with understanding of not only his Word, but also those signals in the heavens  in conjunction with a repeated and uncommon emphasis on keeping the Feasts of the Lord.  It gives us an appreciative glimpse of His mathematical precision and prophetic beauty. His is the only definitive calendar.  I may not understand a lot of things; however, I see further delay on this clockwok, as proof of God’s enduring mercy (II Peter 3)  Every day we are blessed with is another lap or two, a little more time on the clock to save more souls!

That being said, I wasn’t expecting, nor teaching, a huge collapse of life-as-we-know-it last fall, I saw the culmination of the 4 blood moons, and Shemittah shakings as something akin to the new years ball dropping in Time Square or NASCAR “final lap” flags being dropped to alert the drivers in the race. These are signals to let us know time is running out, Harvest time is here, and we had best get crackin’!

The first three Spring Festivals were fulfilled to the day with Jesus’ death, burial and resurrection.  Pentecost marked the arrival of the promised Holy Spirit. As yet unfulfilled on this prophetic framework are the 3 Fall Feasts. These are a picture of the Second Coming of Messiah, Jesus. Trumpets, Yom Kippur and Tabernacles all happen in the 7th month of the Jewish calendar called Tishrei.  Based on a lunar calendar of  approximately 28 days, each Hebrew month begins on a new moon.

It is interesting to note the PREVIOUS month of Elul, leading up to the fabulous,  7th month of Tishrei, is special in it’s own way. It behooves us to break this down a little further as we can see the lateness of the hour in Matthew 24 and note from my headlines above that many precursors to the end of the age which Jesus described are already in play.

A cautionary tale:

The infamous “Golden Calf incident” outlined in Exodus 32-34 describes that the Hebrew people had to wait an agonizing additional 40 days while Moses returned up Mt. Sinai. The people, during this time, had no assurance The Lord would forgive them of their grievous sin of idolatry. I believe it made an impression on them. God did forgive them and Moses returned on Yom Kippur with a new set of Commandments.

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A  tradition soon arose to remember the cautionary tale of sin and uncertainty: Beginning with the first day of the 6th month of Elul, each morning, a priest would ascend the wall of the temple (except the Sabbath)and give out one special series of  blasts on the shofar.   The rams’ horn is sounded to call everyone to a national, holy convocation. A blaring reminder to everyone in earshot that time is incredibly short- The Feast of Trumpets is just around the corner and the Day of Atonement can’t be far behind!

The shofar in Bible history, is only blown for three reasons: to call the people to a Holy Convocation ( prayer meeting!), to the coronation of the King or an urgent call to battle. We are now in that month of Elul: Repent. Tell the Lord you cannot find your way in the wilderness of life without Him. Turn away from flashy idols made with human hands. Examine your heart and turn your eyes from the world and back to the King of Kings.  Time is short. 28-27-26-25  Another day marked off the calendar with each shofar call.  It is time to prepare for the King’s arrival !  Remember to always seek HIS FACE! (Is. 55:6)

Today, Sunday September 25th- is the 22nd day of Elul. The Feast of Trumpets arrives October 3rd.  I believe this framework of divine appointments shows that on some fine, future Feast of Trumpets, Jesus will return for the second time in power and glory.  The Bible dictates that at Trumpets the shofar prophetically blasts 100 times ! (10 in Biblical numerology represents completion or wholeness: 10×10  would be complete completeness or Maximum Wholeness!  A state only attainable through the Blood of the Lamb!  10×10, by the way, was the dimension of the original Tabernacle’s Holy of Holies.)

Great Good News!

You may wonder why I consider this information significant since we are, after all, not the nation of Israel. Its a good question.  While I am not Jewish and we are not Israel, America as a nation was established as a Christian City on a Hill by men mostly in Covenant with the Lord.  Paul explains in Romans 11 that because of the incredible love of Jesus I don’t have to wonder if God will forgive my sins.  My sins have been covered and remembered no more. In this NEW Covenant; Gentile- non- Jewish Believers have been grafted into that Olive Tree of Israel and as such are also adopted into that Covenant of Promise.  Jesus tells us that he didn’t come to destroy the Law but to fulfill it! If we don’t “get” the Old Testament we are missing much of the grand significance of our Godly inheritance.

The daily blasts of the shofar during the month of Elul  should be seen or remembered as wake-up calls to a wayward, sleeping nation.  Wake up! Are you ready for the King?  He is coming and he is coming soon!

References for further study:

Hebrew4Christians.com; Feasts of the Lord by Kevin Howard and Marvin Rosenthal; Mystery of the Shemitah by Rabbi Jonathan Cahn; The Feasts of the Lord DVD series by Marc Biltz,  The Four Blood Moons by John Hagee ; Studies in our Hebrew Roots DVD by Pastor Marc Biltz available at Elshaddaiministries.us; The Light and the Glory by Peter Marshall Jr.

Lev 23; Lev. 25; Ex 23; Deut. 16, 20 ; Deut. 26: 16- Deut. 28.; Ephesians 2:12-18; Romans 11:11-31; John 3:16-17

 

 

 

 

 

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The Hit List

reporter-clip-art-2Most of my readers know I wear many hats. In addition to writing this blog, I also work as a reporter for the newspaper in the small town where I live.In that capacity I generally cover nothing more fascinating than small town news and rarely do I come across anything earthshattering to the world beyond our mountain valley.

Last week, however, I heard there were several families in our hamlet who had been contacted by the FBI and told their names had appeared on the ISIS Hit List.  This greater list of several thousand names has been reported upon in the National media mostly because it was discovered that the list was known to authorities for many months without informing those of the list of the potential danger.  Many on the list are Christians.  ISIS  has previously published a list of military family targets, but not being persnickety in whom they hate or target, this list includes Jewish folks, as well.isis-guy

Rather astounded that our tiny town had more than one on the list, I thought this would be an incredible news story, grabbed my notebook and began running down the rumors. I wanted to give these locals an opportunity to give their testimony to a secular audience in a secular newspaper. These are weird and goofy times and this, in my mind, is a stellar opportunity to report on your life and how you may have earned such dramatic mention.  I thought Christian believers finding themselves in this situation might be eager to announce that the only thing a person should fear is NOT knowing Jesus.  It’s a powerful story to consider especially on a weekend where bombs have gone off in New York and New Jersey.

I was ultimately stonewalled on the story.  All those involved confirmed the validity of the news, yet none would be interviewed (even anonymously)  even for the blog.   The subjects had been told by the FBI not to talk to the media in an effort not to “spread the fear” which was, obviously, the ISIS goal.

I don’t wish to convey any criticism, whatsoever, of those who find themselves on the ISIS Hit List.   It must be as shocking to have the FBI knock on ones’ front door  as it is to discover one has been named on such a list.  I can appreciate not giving publicity to bullies and terrorists. I have reluctantly, let the matter drop as the topic for a news  article.  It does however spark my interest as a jumping off point for a Feverseason post.

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It has crossed my mind and perhaps yours as well, that all this governmental secrecy may be only reluctance to have more anti-Islamic press circulating weeks before a presidential election. Having done some due diligence on the matter I am curious to know how these disparate folks arrived on said list. How the authorities are convinced it is indeed an ISIS generated list and not some high school nerd with a weird sense of humor.  If indeed terrorist generated- why did my neighbors make the hit parade when other more outspoken persons and pastors who often speak against Islam are not.  Let us set my jaded suspicions aside and give the authorities the benefit of the doubt in this instance.  This ISIS Hit List has reminded me of a few things more important and weighty than a newsy headline.

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First, The list is out there.  It has been circulated, allegedly by ISIS.  The deed is done. Supposedly, if you are on the list the FBI would have informed you by now.  The “fear” work is already done–especially for those having that dubious distinction of inclusion.  Second, are Americans so jittery mere discussion of the existence of an ISIS List will send them into a swoon?  Would not an open and honest airing of the topic result in a unified public ANGER at being threatened in such a way followed by action?  Third, is silence on the issue less a fear of public panic or of public outrage at lax border and immigration policies by leaders of both parties which now reap the realization we don’t  know who may be in our country willing and able to commit these or other heinous acts?

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Finally, is our “correctness” and fear of offending some minority group or faction so entrenched that Americans and/or the Body of Christ won’t rise up in outrage at ISIS- this violent, pagan entity threatening peaceful people in our own backyard?  I get that we don’t want to give them free advertising–But, where is our outrage? Where is our big stick of days gone by? Where is a viable leadership plan?  Laying low, practicing our Lamaze breathing while trying not to spread panic is not a plan- it is what you do when there is no plan!

Recall, if you will , a similarly terrifying situation with a young shepherd, David. Sometime after his anointing by Samuel to become the next King of Israel, David stayed busy tending the family sheep while his older brothers are called to fight in Saul’s army.

isis-david-shepherd His folks send him to take snacks to his brothers and find out how things are going. David arrives at the Israeli camp to find that the entire army literally paralyzed in fear.  The Philistines are all lined up across the battlefield behind their champion, Goliath. He’s a giant, he is big, mean and scary. He comes out every day and says dreadful things about the God of the Israel, their king and the caliber of their army.  Goliath asks for one warrior to come fight him to settle the conflict- In essence, this battle would determine not only the fate of two nations but would show everyone who really was the preeminent god.  It was perceived as a serious challenge and it scared the army and the Israeli King to death.

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David arrives on scene, hears the smack talk coming from Goliath. Strangely, the teenager isn’t terrorized, he isn’t shaking in his little sandals.  He gets mad! And he has trouble understanding why others aren’t equally outraged. Look it up and read the whole story in I Samuel 17.  It’s a doozy!.

What is the difference between this young shepherd, his brothers, a professional army and the King of Israel?  Just off the top of my head:

1) David had an anointing

2) David had the experience of that anointing in action, He had killed a lion and a bear with his own hands, while guarding his flock.

3) He was accustomed to acting on his own in solitary situations and wasn’t hindered overmuch by what others thought.

4) He had a personal knowledge and trust in the POWER of who His God was. He had spent his spare time meditating on the Word of the Lord.

5) He knew that he was the anointed of this selfsame God.

6) Please note that David wasn’t surprised to see the Nephilim. Giants according to Genesis 6 were the demonic offspring of fallen angels and easy earth girls. They keep popping up throughout Hebrew History and were known to have superhuman abilities.  Know your enemy!

We all know the story.  He picks up 5 stones – Goliath has 4 brothers, after all.  David kills the Giant, then proceeds to chop off the giant’s head with Goliath’s own sword the entire Philistine army runs for the hills , now chased by the newly empowered and freshly motivated, Israeli Army. David had seen the exact same giant as the rest of the crowd.  What was the difference?

His life and actions were in agreement with who GOD’s Word said that HE was.  Today’s American Christians need to remember that.  The Army , David’s older brothers and Saul had all come into complete agreement with what Goliath was saying.  David, heard the same words from the same giant, but he was in agreement and empowered by who God said he was.  David was no longer the dopey kid brother, the useless delivery boy.  He was God’s anointed.  A slayer of lion’s and bears. His reputation and testimony empowered an army, defeated the giant and set the enemy running. It also changed David’s life when he stepped into his God-given destiny.

I can’t do anything about American leadership- other than vote in November- which I plan to do. I can’t do anything about people who won’t talk to me about a news story. Nor, can I force the FBI to answer my questions. It is fruitless for me to stew about motives involved- good or bad.  That is not my job. My job is to be bold and to use my words to God’s purpose:

Don’t be afraid of terroristic words, deeds or lists.  Don’t be  ‘fraidy cats who are fearful of speaking out against bad policies, bad people, un-Godly legislation, horrible situations, political corruption OR a compromising church that looks more like the folks they are called by God to change.

Bible stories are not fictional tales to entertain kids in Sunday School. isis-giants-nephilimThey are true and intended to infuse young and old with a vision of actionable faith in a living, loving GOD.  Like young David, we are supposed to know who our Father God, hopefully long before we hit a battlefield. We are to understand our anointing and move IN IT every day- right now- as we live out that inheritance.  We are supposed to know who we serve, not to stand idly by and let Philistines or Giants threaten us, or make us feel foolish or powerless.  We are called to keep our armor on and be on that battlefield swinging that sword and send the enemy running!

If we don’t have a bold, comprehensive understanding that Christianity is an action word than we have a fundamental identity crisis.  I follow Jesus.  It is not supposed to be easy, or comfortable.  Christianity requires faith and heart. It could cost you friends or family, careers and at some point American lives may well be in jeopardy. Jesus told us PERILOUS times are coming!  I believe him.  Tough, ugly times inevitably will come to America.  The enemy won’t always be easily identifiable as ISIS members wearing black masks   We need to know who we are, and what our function is in the world.  If I encounter any sort of giant hurling threats at me and mine- I have been given authority and training over the demonic and can take care of that problem.

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Remember, you may not be on this latest ISIS Hit List- but are you active and threatening enough to be on Satan’s Hit List?  Sooner or later, if you are doing this Christianity thing right, there will be a giant or two or three on the field in front of you and you had best know what to do.  The world may be scared of black hooded terrorists like ISIS and their paper lists; but we serve the Lord of Hosts and we know what to do to big-mouthed giants.

References:

1 Sam. 16 and 17;  Genesis 6:1-6;  Ephesians 6:10-18; Matt. 24:8-13; Luke 21:12-19; Numbers 13:33; Exodus 23:20-33

 

 

 

 

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Kryptonite!

It has been a while since I posted on Feverseason.com . I want to thank folks for their prayers.  It has been a full summer with more than the usual amount of family drama.  I believe things have simmered down enough that I now feel comfortable getting back to work. I have missed the writing and appreciate so many readers have contacted me to see when I was going to start again– Thanks for waiting!

After so long an absence, I have been giving serious consideration to my re-launch topic.  While there is much going on in the world crying out for commentary the Lord continues to lay on something on my heart which I believe to be a pivot point with meaningful impact on many of the topics on my list for future posts; so, it is there I will begin:thuhgwj81i

Recall brassy Lois Lane and freckle-faced Jimmy Olsen of the fictitious Daily Planet in Superman Comic Book lore. They honestly believe they know everything about co-worker- the dull, bespectacled and nerdy Clark Kent.  Ever on a quest for a late-breaking news these hard-working journalists never connect those coincidental dots or listen to Kent’s voice, and recognize his true identity. Likewise, I believe the modern day church has incrementally photo-shopped their perception of Jesus/God/Holy Spirit and Scripture to make their faith explainable in the tangible natural realm, conforming to a box that matches their own limited experience. Not only have many mainline Christians grown skeptical and selective of what they teach, for the most part they have discounted any current necessity or dependence on the supernatural– then wonder why no one thinks Church is relevant or very interesting.

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Some denominations take a liberal slant intimating the Biblical record is flowery speech, rich in poetic imagery used by an ancient people to try to formulate their origins or victorious historic accounts. The other extreme, more Evangelical in outlook, will adamantly defend the entire canon of Scripture as inspired, accurate and true- then vociferously maintain God no long works in that way. The miraculous certainly happened back then, but there is no need now for confirming experiences nor powerful glory which may disrupt the Sunday Morning program. Of course, there are variations falling within these two but the unifying thread seems to be draining any supernatural expectation from the Christian faith.

Both ideas are perilous and exhibit a shocking lack of knowledge as well as avoidance of the Prophetic.  The first example is all too common, maintaining Jesus was a prophet whose teachings are useful for moral society or maintaining stable family life. The latter grants a historic nod to the powerful character of God but hinges, doctrinally, on the supposition that God has a changeable nature. Convincing themselves this must be true because WE the people change all the time,  they transfer that inconstant nature onto the God we supposedly worship. This has God being made over into our image rather than transforming our minds to be more like Jesus. Very dangerous territory.

It is not my job to determine who is really a Christian and who is not. It is my obligation however, to point out that if you claim to be a Christian you must follow the real Jesus. There must be actual relationship developed that changes your life or we are left to wonder if it was a true salvation experience. superman-5Like Lois Lane, the American Church, by in large, seems too comfortably sophisticated or hard-nosed to recognize what she needs to SEE to achieve the powerful, earth shattering, bad-guy busting, Pulitzer prize winning, life changing, scoop of the Ages! Amazing, powerful relationship and true love is sitting right there, unrequited, just for the asking.

Belief that Jesus is the Messiah with the power to cover our sins and assure eternal life is supernatural, is it not? To think Jesus only a prophet, or nice guy relegates him equal status with Buddha or Mohammed, yet complicates matters by simultaneously making him a bold-faced liar. Jesus claimed to be the Messiah. He claimed to be GOD and because of a supernatural, incomprehensible LOVE for us allowed himself to be sacrificed and raised from the dead by the supernatural, resurrection power of the Holy Spirit. He also claimed he was coming back. Are you ready?superman-6

Belief in Jesus also comes with a supernatural identity crisis. To fully walk into that new identity I MUST scrape off the old sinful nature and begin to understand, grow into and embrace his righteousness and those supernatural gifts and life altering traits. We are supposed to look and act and do what our Superman told us to do!

Additional dangers of these oppositional stances quickly cascade like falling dominoes. Without reliance on the viability of Scripture the Body of Christ is rudderless.  More than kind words of a loving Savior, it is imperative to grasp, factually, the Bible is a supernatural book that was divinely inspired and holds keys to knowing our supernatural God. It is powerful, prophetic and important and grows more so every day! If we as a denomination, pastor or Christian pick parts we are comfortable believing from those we find harsh or unnecessary, not only are we idolatrously placing ourselves above God- we need to clearly understand we do so at our peril.

If  Believers grow comfortable defining Jesus outside of the supernatural realm, denying the need for complete submission to the Holy Spirit, then they likely downplay the reality of the enemy and the veracity of yet to be fulfilled prophetic activity, as well. Rather than always equipping ourselves with the full armor of God, instead we question the existence of a spiritual battlefield as well as the one that opposes us waiting to destroy us.superman-11

The repercussions are many and the stakes can be eternal. My fear is this wholesale denominational aversion to fully accepting God/Jesus/Holy Spirit and the Word as essential, supernatural truth to be followed and obeyed will become the Kryptonite which renders the professing American Church untrained, useless and totally without discernment-spiritual or otherwise.  Such willing blindness is a position of disobedience and comes at a critical, deceptive time in history. It can, however, be turned around.  Wake up! WAKE UP! Is there oil in your Lamp?   THE KING IS COMING!!!

 

References:

Revelation 3:14-22

II Tim. 3:5

Malachi 3:6

Matthew 24

Matthew 25: 1-13

Psalm 29

Mark 16

John 3:16-17

John 1:1-14

 

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Run Anyway

th3DTL1SBLI turned on the TV last week and they were interviewing someone expected to place well in the 2016 Boston Marathon.  I had never heard of this particular athlete, but I thought,”what a champ!”  It was only April of 2013, three short years since those wretched, muslim brothers,  punk Chechen refugees America had taken in ,who put together a couple of pressure cooker bombs and blew another hole in the fabric of American life.thK4SA79JN  Two homemade bombs made by creeps who hate us, in the space of a few minutes ended the life of 3 innocents,  injured 264 folks and drove home the idea (again) that being in a big crowd is a risk, attending a concert or a cheering runners at a Marathon finish line could tragically put you or your family in harm’s way.

We could spend many hours discussing lessons learned or not learned from 9-11, or the Boston Marathon or more recent, similar incidents. We as a nation should become much more wise about immigration policy, we should become more savvy about the roots and actual content of Islamic teachings concerning anyone who is not a follower.  However, rather than become bogged down in motives, and political gobbledygook, I prefer to concentrate on the flip side: the response.thU3MOQ8D1 The Boston Marathon folks didn’t cave in to the palpable fear. They never stopped holding the race. They got wiser, more watchful and ramped up security but they never stopped running.  And people signed up and came back the very next year.  Bravo.  Like the Boston Tea Party, an excellent metaphor for American Spirit.

I never ran a marathon, I never ran a 5K.  In my younger days, high school and college, I never participated in track events but I liked to run.  For me it was always a solitary effort I could mold to my own timetable, set my own pace and spend time thinking.  It wasn’t a thing of beauty, I was never a contender for the Olympic team…but I was out there.  I liked the hot Dallas wind in my face, the slam of one foot in front of the other as I made my way around the streets in my neighborhood after school. I quit running after I had kids, the logistics were tricky to overcome and I found other ways to get some exercise.  To me, those memories of running are always linked to  the carefree days of childhood where gallons of energetic joy propelled me and my friends  tothSHZ4ZZTO always move as fast as we could. top speed on bicycles, rollerskates, the occasional runaway wagon.  Oftentimes, bare feet on sizzling pavement motivated us to move more quickly to our next neighborhood adventure. It represents easier times.  Running represents Freedom!

I salute the marathon contestants who swallowed the fear last week on April 19th.  They overcame the memory of horror and choked the streets of Boston scrambling to find their pace in the multitude.  I also salute the lover’s of the race, Boston Strong,  who ignored their unease and turned out to line the route, cheering those runners on.thTQW90M4V

Paul likens the Christian life to a runners race. He also tells us we may face terrorism. Satan’s calling card. Be prepared for that.  That’s why it’s called Spiritual Warfare! We are going to have good days.  We are going to have really bad days. Occasionally we will trip on a curb or catch our toe in a hole and we may faceplant in spectacular fashion. That’s OK, you weren’t chosen for this team because you were a gazelle. You were chosen for this team because you want to be FREE rather than in bondage. Get up and keep moving forward.  Inevitably you pull a muscle and may be out of the game for a while. Sometimes the weather will be dreadful and the race delayed.th8A8QPXEB

Occasionally, someone on your own team will shove you off the track.  Get over it!  Maintain focus. Some fear being asked technical  or even sarcastic questions to which they don’t know the answer. Just tell people your story- how you became a runner.  That keeps it simple and real. You see, those who believe they will never be “good or scholarly” enough to speak up for our faith are consigned to the sidelines. These folks, though they wear the runner’s suit are always stretching but, choosing fear over power, never hit the bricks.  In those times, just tell people your personal running story- how and where you were when you jumped into this race – that keeps it real. It’s always good to keep training and learning so you improve- but it is not supposed to be tricky or hard.  It’s just a race with Jesus. A race to Freedom. Knowing where your race will end and helping others to see the value of that finish line is the goal.

Thankfully, we don’t have to be perfect or the most knowledgeable, smooth or eloquent to be on this team.  We just have to start. We have to be willing to tie on the running shoes every day, put one foot in front of the other- regardless of proficiency or stopwatch- and join that race, following where the Holy Spirit leads.  Shove your fear, your hesitation or excuses out of the way and Run Anyway!

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Verses to ponder upon:  2 Timothy 4:7; Hebrews 12:1-3; 1 Corinthians 9:24-27; 2 Tim.1:7; Ephesians 6:12; John 8:36, Galatians 5:1

 

 

 

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