Saturday, December 26, 2009

What is The Lord Saying Today?

Before I tell you what I hear the Lord saying to me today, I'll tell you what he's not saying:

he's not speaking to me at all about the time of Jacob's trouble/the tribulation/the rapture_escape from all (Luke 21:36), and or the end of the world.

Why is he not speaking to his servants about the end that appears to be near?

1. Maybe its not as near as we think
2. Maybe it is near but he prepares his servants for these things in a different way than we would think

The Lord has dropped this into my heart this morning:

We must figure out how to get these things right before we stand before our Lord:

Focus on Jesus
1. Rejoice ALWAYS in him: Phil 4:4-7
2. Delight ourselves in him: Psalm 37:4
3. Maintain Jesus as our first love...always: Rev 2:4

I'll be honest with you when I say that I am not sure that I have quite figured out how to do these things yet. The Lord has dropped them like a cluster bomb in my heart and my request/prayer back to him is "Lord, please show me how to do this?"

Although I am a bit foggy on the "how" I believe the initial response back from the Lord on "how" is: we will ourselves to do it. We use our God given free will to decide "I'm going to rejoice in my God today, I don't care what the world looks like or what my circumstances look like. As an act of my will I choose to delight myself in my God today, Lord I choose to delight myself in you today, please allow me to do this according to your word today. I choose you as my first love today Lord Jesus, everything I am and every will be, everything I have I lay at your feet that I may have you. You are my treasure in heaven, you are my treasure on earth. I consider all things rubbish in comparison with the surpassing greatness of gaining you, Christ Jesus my Lord and master."

^^This, or something like this being said and meant within our hearts and minds is what our Lord is looking for.

Self Talk
Read your bibles and see the miracles and other ways our Lord has responded to our "self-talk." What we are saying to ourselves is being read directly by our Lord moment by moment and he responds to what we say within ourselves. Example:

Matt 9:18While he was saying this, a ruler came and knelt before him and said, “My daughter has just died. But come and put your hand on her, and she will live.” 19Jesus got up and went with him, and so did his disciples.
20Just then a woman who had been subject to bleeding for twelve years came up behind him and touched the edge of his cloak. 21She said to herself, “If I only touch his cloak, I will be healed.”
22Jesus turned and saw her. “Take heart, daughter,” he said, “your faith has healed you.”
And the woman was healed from that moment.

Our God comes first, every time all the time. We must learn to get this right....rejoice in him, delight in him, maintain your first love. HE is everything. grace and peace

Thursday, December 24, 2009

Keep Watch

Matt 24:42“Therefore keep watch, because you do not know on what day your Lord will come.

Although I think the Lord has given me a number of nudgings that we have to wait longer to meet him in the clouds/escape from all (Luke 21:36), we must always be watching and ready.

Luke 21:36 Be always on the watch, and pray that you may be able to escape all that is about to happen, and that you may be able to stand before the Son of Man.”

There are people in the world who tell us there's no reason to obey the word of God and watch today. Their 'wisdom' will be shown for what it is. For us who take the word at face value, we must continue to be found doing what we were told to do. We are to PRAY that we will be counted worthy to escape ALL of what's about to happen, and we must WATCH for our Lord's return.

And, let us do this ^^^^^ with patience:

Hebrews 12:1 Wherefore seeing we also are compassed about with so great a cloud of witnesses, let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which doth so easily beset us, and let us run with patience the race that is set before us,

grace and peace

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

The End is Not Yet

I asked the Lord recently about how much time was left, how long until Luke 21:36 was fulfilled? I believe his answer was a familiar scripture that tells us the end is not yet:

Luke 17:26“Just as it was in the days of Noah, so also will it be in the days of the Son of Man. 27People were eating, drinking, marrying and being given in marriage up to the day Noah entered the ark. Then the flood came and destroyed them all.

28“It was the same in the days of Lot. People were eating and drinking, buying and selling, planting and building. 29But the day Lot left Sodom, fire and sulfur rained down from heaven and destroyed them all.

30“It will be just like this on the day the Son of Man is revealed.

Luke 17 and Matt 24 are loaded with imagery for the day we leave this planet. Yes, there are many scoffers in the world who hate the escape from all and anyone who mentions it. Those scoffers will be exposed on the day we go into our 'ark,' the day we leave our 'Sodom.'

Our Lord gives us a picture of the day we leave. What does the picture look like? What are the words used as paint to 'paint' this picture for us? The words are:

Being given in marriage

These are the words our Lord used to paint a picture for us. The words our Lord used describe a day for us. Look at the words in the list above. If all you knew about the day that our Lord comes was that the words above best describe that day, would you say the words describe today? I don't think so. Do you think the words above describe a 'great depression' that people keep telling us is coming? I don't think so. The words our Lord used to describe the day he is coming had everything to do with a prosperous day. The words used describe to perfection what the days looked like not too long ago at the height of the housing market bubble.

We cannot add or subtract from the words our Lord used to describe the day he is coming. We have to take what was written at face value and face value indicates more likely than not, we have more waiting to do.

Look around you, listen to the pundits who try to piece together a vision of the future for you using today's "news," how accurate have they been in the past. Who saw today's economic collapse coming? Few did. How many today are predicting days of prosperity ahead of us? Nobody is. Yet the word of God paints us a picture of a better day than the days we are in today. In that day, he comes back for us and the same day the world spins into the abyss.

Why would the Lord come back in a day of prosperity and not in a day of wordly distress?

Here's why:

Hosea 13:6 When I fed them, they were satisfied; when they were satisfied, they became proud; then they forgot me.

The world is in distress today. In days of distress people cry out to God for relief. I believe the days we are in today are the transition from 3rd base to home plate. I believe we are seeing days of distress today as a last great act of mercy by our Lord before all hell breaks loose on earth. Act of mercy? Yes, that's what I said. If you are jobless and homeless and sick and tired but you are truly "in Christ" then you have gained more than all the world has to offer and your momentary troubles will fade away. The people who have not responded with faith to the days of distress will have missed their last pre-time of Jacob's trouble chance to set things right with the Lord.

People are crying out to the Lord today and what happens when he feeds them? They become satisfied, they become proud...and you finish the sentence... Luke 17 and Matt 24 both paint a picture of a day in our future that is characterized by prosperity not depression and distress. The coming day of prosperity we see painted in Luke 17 and Matt 24 will be turned on its head the very moment we leave this place. We are told that with both Noah and Lot, the "good times rolled" right up to the very day they went into the ark and left Sodom. 30“It will be just like this on the day the Son of Man is revealed.

The Lord is always many steps ahead of this world. People can't see more than inches in front of their own faces because they do not look to the Lord for wisdom. People look to this world for their wisdom and strength and guidance and substance. The Lord could come back for us any day, but we likely have to wait for a more prosperous day to see it.

The signs of our Lords coming are: people are starving the world is thirsty
Buying...the news headlines tell us people are not buying anymore
Selling...the news headlines tell us that sellers are going out of business
Planting...less people are planting because of bad weather, government regulation, no profit etc of every type are filing for bankruptcy due to the economy, housing and commercial real estate glut etc etc
Marrying-marriage today is the "out" thing to do. "Hooking up" is the "in thing"
Being given in marriage--ditto^^

Think about it. Be patient....grace and peace

Friday, December 18, 2009

Courage and Faith

Please take 20-30 seconds to read Mark 4:35-41 below:

Jesus Calms the Storm

Mark 4:35That day when evening came, he said to his disciples, “Let us go over to the other side.” 36Leaving the crowd behind, they took him along, just as he was, in the boat. There were also other boats with him. 37A furious squall came up, and the waves broke over the boat, so that it was nearly swamped. 38Jesus was in the stern, sleeping on a cushion. The disciples woke him and said to him, “Teacher, don’t you care if we drown?”

39He got up, rebuked the wind and said to the waves, “Quiet! Be still!” Then the wind died down and it was completely calm.

40He said to his disciples, “Why are you so afraid? Do you still have no faith?”

41They were terrified and asked each other, “Who is this? Even the wind and the waves obey him!”

This is an amazing piece of scripture that shows us the disciples, who walked with Jesus every day, who had Jesus in their physical presence at the time, faltering in their faith. They failed the test here. A storm was raging around them but they had God Almighty with them in the boat yet they still faltered in their faith. That amazes me. That's why I say to you not to beat yourselves up when you find yourself without the physical/touch/see/hear Jesus right in front of you and you feel like your faith is wavering.

The disciples waffled into faithlessness with Jesus in their midst but we are called to do better than they did. When the Lord woke up, what did he say? First he calmed the storm, then he rebuked the disciples with: 40He said to his disciples, “Why are you so afraid? Do you still have no faith?”
41They were terrified and asked each other, “Who is this? Even the wind and the waves obey him!”

First they were terrified by the wind and waves then they were terrified of Jesus himself asking themselves "who is this?" How could the disciples ask "who is this?" when they walked and talked with him EVERY DAY.

The lessons learned that jump out from this are:
1. Don't be like the disciples in their faithlessness
2. Give the Lord and yourself some credit for the faith you do have today without having the Lord physically manifested before you
3. Maintain your faith in spite of the storm

The Lord is asking us the same questions today that he asked the disciples in the boat:
1. Why are you so afraid?
2. Do you still have no faith?

Yea, the Lord sees the storm around us but he could care less about the storm, he's looking at our REACTION to it.....Do we respond to the storm with fear and faithlessness or with courage and faithfulness? How we respond is very very important.

Instead of the disciples waking Jesus up and asking him "don't you care if we die?" The Lord was looking for them to say to themselves and each other "I'm going to respond to this storm with courage and faith, EVEN IF IT KILLS ME I will walk and stand in faith. Either what I believe is true or its a lie and I'm betting every fiber of my being, my present, my future and everything else that I have found the truth and I will stand on it. The same God who has sustained me every day up through today will continue to make me stand tomorrow if he wills it. My times are in my GOD'S HANDS not the storms hands PERIOD."

Our God is looking for courage and faith. He is looking for BOLDNESS in the face of the storm. He is looking for people who will slap down that finger that the storms of life put in our faces and stick their fist out at the storm. The storms of life do not challenge us unless we let them. When we stand in faith, the storms of life challenge our GOD, not us. He who watched over me yesterday will watch over me today. I will not fear, my God has my back<----that kind of "self talk" puts the problems we face into our God's hands. Our response in faith transfers the problems we face from us to our God, do you see the power in that? If we do not stand in our faith, we will not stand at all, its really that simple. Hebrews 3:6 But Christ is faithful as a son over God's house. And ... But Christ is faithful as a son over God's house. And we are his house, if we hold on to our courage and the hope of which we boast

See that word "if" in there?^^^ People don't like that word because it means they have to do something. It means they play a part in what our God is doing. The key words there are IF and WE that means us.......if we hold onto our courage and the hope of which we boast THEN we are God's house. IF/THEN are CONDITIONAL statements.

We can find this idea of courage and fear taught to us from both directions. Above is the teaching on us being courageous and below we see the end of the fearful:

Rev 21:8 But the fearful, and unbelieving, and the abominable, and murderers, and whoremongers, and sorcerers, and idolaters, and all liars, shall have their part in the lake which burneth with fire and brimstone: which is the second death.


The disciples failed many times in their walk even when they had our Lord in flesh and blood standing before them, so don't beat yourself up too bad when you fail. Don't let yourself off the hook though because we are taught that in the end, we make the choice of how we respond to the storms of life. There is an end for the fearful and cowardly and faithless, and there is an end for the courageous, and faithful. We have been given a free will to choose for ourselves which end will be for us. Let us choose wisely.

Grace and peace

Saturday, December 12, 2009

This is What Everyone is Looking For...

Isaiah55:2 Why spend money on what is not bread, and your labor on what does not satisfy?
Listen, listen to me, and eat what is good, and your soul will delight in the richest of fare.

Our God comes right out and says it...listen to me! Why does he tell us to listen to him? So our souls can "delight in the richest of fare."

This right here is what all humanity has been searching after since the very beginning. Human beings are constantly, continually chasing after what will make them "happy." Think about everything people do, they chase after sex, drugs, money, power, you fill in the blank here, but why? Why do they chase these things? To make them feel HAPPY. To put a finer point on this, they chase wordly things to satisfy their souls.

Our Lord tells us clearly to listen to him. He says it twice. LISTEN, LISTEN TO ME. He's trying to get our attention. He knows all about the grand canyon sized hole in the deepest part of each human. He knows about it because he put it there. Our Lord tells us to stop trying to feed our soul wordly junk food that will eventually kill us and to pay attention to him so we can feast and delight in the richest of fare.

Stop and think for a moment what it feels like to have your soul feast on the "richest of fare." Do you think you would still be feeling hunger pains after the soul feast our Lord offers us? I think we will be deeply satisfied after our soul has feasted on the richest of fare. I also think I would be looking with great disdain on the things of this world after such a feast.

What's the bottom line here?

The Lord alone is our answer. This world cannot satisfy us. This past week the Lord has repeatedly brought to my mind that we are to delight ourselves in him:

Psalm 37:4 Delight yourself in the LORD and he will give you the ... Delight yourself in the LORD and he will give you the desires of your heart.

I believe the Lord shared with me that we are not to wait for heaven to delight ourselves in him. We start now. Think about that for a moment. What makes heaven such a great place? One thing: Jesus lives there. Heaven would not be heaven without our God in it. We are told to find our delight in the Lord right now, today. We are told to feast on something that really does satisfy the grand canyon sized hole within each of us. We all have a God sized hole within us. That's a big hole and it takes the real, one and only King of Kings to fill it.

This past week I have been asking the Lord, okay Lord, so how do I delight myself in you? The answer is, at least the first step is, to set our will on that desire. That is, as an act of my will, I set myself to delight myself in the Lord. The Lord has to take care of the rest.

In addition to these ^^^ thoughts this week, I believe it has also crossed through my mind that we have to return to lives of simplicity. We need to get rid of alot of junk in our lives and focus on the few things that matter. Less is more :-)

May the Lord bless you and keep you, may his face shine upon you and may he grant you peace.

Saturday, December 05, 2009

Huge....Just Huge

This week the Lord spoke to me about:

Isaiah 55:11 so is my word that goes out from my mouth: It will not return to me empty, but will accomplish what I desire and achieve the purpose for which I sent it.

I've read it lots of times but I guess I never really "got it." Here's the interesting part that I believe the Holy Spirit highlighted for me (and now you). It's this idea of the word from the Lord's mouth "returning" to him. Think really hard about this. Think about this idea of the word "returning" to him. How does the word of the Lord "return" to him? How does the word of the Lord "accomplish what I desire and achieve the purpose for which I sent it?"

Answer? We pray his word back to him....Think about this, how else does the word of God "return" to him except that we PRAY it back to him? There is no other way.....

We really need to get this idea and start incorporating it into our prayer lives starting now. The word of God was sent to accomplish and achieve purposes in this world. Question is HOW does the word of God accomplish and achieve what it was sent for? It must return to him....and HOW does it return to him? We pray it back to him.

What a simple question: The Lord sent his word but how does it return to him?
What a tremendous answer: We pray his word back to him.

What happens when we pray the word of God back to God? It will not return to me empty, but will accomplish what I desire and achieve the purpose for which I sent it.

The Lord has made many promises in his word. He has made many SPECTACULAR promises to us. Want an example? How about this:

Psalm 103:1Praise the Lord, O my soul; all my inmost being, praise his holy name. 2Praise the Lord, O my soul, and forget not all his benefits— 3who forgives all your sins and heals all your diseases, 4who redeems your life from the pit and crowns you with love and compassion, 5who satisfies your desires with good things so that your youth is renewed like the eagle’s.

This word says that we are to not forget all the Lord's benefits. Benefits? Yea, that's what it says. Benefits like what? Like he forgives all our sins and heals ALL our diseases. Does the bible really say he will heal ALL our diseases or just most of them? Read it for yourself. The Lord sent that word to "not return to me empty, but will accomplish what I desire and achieve the purpose for which I sent it."

So we have our example of the one of many promises SENT by our God to accomplish a purpose. Question is, is that word/promise that was sent (by the Lord) RETURNING to our God? In your case, only you know that right? Only you know if you are returning the word that was sent to our God in prayer. And...IF the word IS returning to the Lord we KNOW that it will not return to him empty but will accomplish that which it was sent for.


All this was a long way of saying that our Lord sent his word to accomplish things in this world. The way the word accomplishes things is when it is returned to the one who sent it by us in prayer.

As with everything else in our walk on earth, this takes patience and perseverance to see fruit from it. We don't plant a seed today and see a fruit tree tomorrow. Our Lord determines the "how" and "when" prayers are answered. We supply the "what" when we pray. Let's make sure that our "what" is wrapped in as many promises as we can find in the bible when we offer it up to our Lord.

Done for today, keep the faith, grace and peace