W.O.M.E.N. of Ministry

 

“And when he was come into the temple, the chief priests and the elders of the people came unto him as he was teaching, and said, By WHAT AUTHORITY DOEST THOU THESE THINGS? and WHO GAVE THEE THIS AUTHORITY?

And Jesus answered and said unto them,  I also will ask you one thing, which if you tell me, I in like wise will tell you by what authority I do these things. the baptism of John, whence (where) was it? from heaven or of men? 

And they reasoned with themselves, saying, If we shall say from heaven; he will say unto us, Why then did ye not believe him? But if we shall say, Of men; we fear the people; for all hold John as a prophet.

And they answered Jesus, and said, We cannot tell (do not know). And he said unto them, Neither tell I you by what authority I do these things.” Matthew 21:23-27
This is one of those extremely comforting Bible stories that remind us that Jesus Christ IS our High Priest who DOES understand every single thing we go through.
I really detest the fact that I have to use this blog to address this issue that I am growing quite tired of addressing and we will deal with that at the end of this post.
I am one of those “lucky” ladies who have to privilege of removing my own (WP) followers.

Satan does like to send some “live “ones my way.
And occasionally the OTHER “live” ones are sent this way also.

So between the freak-show Casanova wannabe’s who seem to NOT notice the title REVEREND and think I might be up for some..something and dealing with the “Good ol’ boy’s ministerial club” THIS sure can be a whole lotta fun!
I tried unsuccessfully last night to leave about a fifteen hundred word comment on a fellow bloggers post, he had recently started to follow my blog and after I read some of his work, there was no secret about how he felt about “females” in ministry, so I was just going to give him a different point of view but unfortunately when I hit “post comment” I was met with “invalid security entry” and eventually just removed him from following me for the second time, being that anti-female, I know if they are reading it is for the wrong reason.

So rather than write all of it again, “explaining” “FEMALES” in ministry, I decided to just “once and for all it here and just send this out to anyone else who wants to argue the point.

A point I am NOT going to argue. I WILL say my peace because I am sick to my death of it and THIS IS MY BLOG, I didn’t go looking for their churches, so if they want to come here, and read my posts in some sort of hope of finding “heretical” proof as fodder to kindle the fire as they tie all of us “female folk” to the stake for “preaching without a Paulinist license” well, they may just have another thing coming.

This is NOT just for me, I WANTED to do this for ALL the women whom Christ HAS CALLED, who are going through or have been through this gauntlet of the “brotherhood” and for those whose wounds received while running that gauntlet has left them laying in ashes, I want to encourage you, my sisters, GET BACK UP!
Women in ministry… stands for THIS… Wounded, Ostracized, Maligned, Estranged, Negated.

I will share the “high-lights” of my ministerial journey and I am sure many of you have been there and many more I hope to encourage, because it IS not just you, it is par for running the course set before us.

Of course NO ONE tells us this upfront, because after others discover that we have been called, the “wounding” starts.
When I was first saved, I was so scared and shy that when they called on me to testify I would actually shake and dreaded being called on to read a scripture because I was absolutely terrified and quite content to sit there and listen.

But soon I started being awoken in the dead of night with an overwhelming need to read the Bible, as I try to be so clear about my past, I had been an absolute heathen and knew only what I had studied with my Dad while growing up.
And soon this became more of an obsession and I took my study Bible to work and studied every possible chance I had, I could not put it down.
After I became a mother, I would take care of my baby, and at that time my husband was gone about twelve hours a day and of course my family visited us a lot, but my point is this, I would take care of my baby, who soon became a toddler, on onward, clean my house, take of my pets, do ALL that life requires and then after my family had fallen asleep, I would spend the rest of the night studying the Bible until four or five am and get up the next day and do it ALL over again.
So it does irk me pretty badly when these guys who have had the PRIVILEGE of mothers and wives “taking care of them” and had the PRIVILEGE of seminary school and classes to learn what I, and many other ladies had to absolutely sacrifice to learn and I am NOT complaining and I am NOT begrudging and I thank Jesus EVERY DAY for the precious gift that HE has given me to be a MESSENGER of HIS Word.

And I know MANY other WOMEN who have been through this same “course of training” and what really bothers me the most is when CERTAIN guys and ESPECIALLY certain denominations teach that somehow WOMEN would do all this to somehow gain power to USURP some magical authority over them.
Look dudes, DON’T even kid yourselves! I have no desire to be anything OVER a man, I want to minister to the ones God has sent me to and as far as the old “men pray for men, women for women go” that kind of thinking does not even belong in a church!

If anyone is thinking this way.. instead of worrying about who is laying hands on who, they really need to hit the altars and get their mind right.

My first pastor was an absolute awesome man of God and was the first to invite a “lady” to minister at that particular church, which was one time and after he passed away the new pastor also “ALLOWED” (wow, what a term..) another lady to minister, as soon as she stepped foot behind the podium, one entire pew of the congregation got up and left.

She happens to be a dear friend and just having SEEN this was such an encouragement to me in my later years, because at this time, I had NOT been technically called.
But in such grace and beauty she APPEARED unscathed, she ministered a beautiful candle-light sermon (A candle which I STILL have to this day, and I am also sure she also financed all the candles, holders, and tiny flashlights for the children, because that is another aspect to being female, YOU pay for your own ministry) But she did not show one tear, but I KNOW how deep that cut had to have been and how deep that scar has to go this day.

BUT she STOOD, she stood just as Steven stood as they stoned him, she STOOD just Paul stood when he took lash after lash, repeatedly and on more than one occasion.

She stood just as Mary stood when they laughed in her face when she announced Jesus’ resurrection, to which I have never read one APOLOGY given to Mary for outright accusing her of being a mentally deranged liar.

And we have NEVER discussed how she was wounded, ostracized, maligned, estranged, and negated.

My favorite one is negated, it means “rendered worthless as a truth” and she probably never had a clue what her stand would mean for the rest of us BUT God did.

And others who have been ostracized by their own fathers, maligned and estranged for BEING a vessel of God and choosing to OBEY God at the price of having their own father’s DESPISE them and think they are heretics on their way to hell.

I have listened to them tell their stories as ENCOURAGEMENT to those of us who would SOON travel that road, stories told their tears and heartache, bearing evidence that those wounds and those tears would only cease existence once wiped away by the Saviors hand in New Jerusalem.

But I was blessed on that count, I have a very supportive father, who has had his fair share of discussion on the subject with those not so inclined.

And my late uncle, whose influence is one of the reasons why I choose to carry my maiden name into ministry.

He was who encouraged me to be bold and to tackle the really difficult subjects that I usually work with and his encouragement to NEVER see myself as a WOMAN but as what GOD called me to be.

And when God opened the door for me to start writing a blog, he had actually prayed with me the day BEFORE I wrote my very first post.

I was so excited and also TERRIFIED, because the particular church had an impeccable reputation and I was scared to death to even try to articulate the word of God under their name after having spent a lot of television time listening to the sermons of the pastor years earlier, it was hard to stand in that group.

But I tried and I did my best and I pulled back a lot, things that now under my own ministry, I am “free” to say without the fear of “bringing reproach” on another ministry.

And it is my uncle’s sweet face and gentle voice calling me “little girl” and encouraging me EVERY single time I feel the anointing fire rise up in me to tackle a subject that I KNOW is just going to garner a little fuel to the destructive fire of hatred and misogyny that burns against me.

As I go a little farther, I could really use that encouragement as I go through my own story, so I’ll probably add his beautiful face in this post.
But on with it when I personally was called there were only THREE people in the entire church that knew, including myself.

By this time things had changed and there was still ONE preacher whose family had always been part of the church and somehow one night the subject of female ministers was brought up at which he was quick to pull out the scriptural big guns of SILENCE.

To which I asked from my pew, in a new-found boldness, “What if God ANOINTS a woman?” to which my question was met with a glare and when his appointment time rolled around again it was a”being tied to the whipping post” extravaganza.

This actually had answered a prayer for me, I had technically received my “hands on and prophecy” calling through another minister, who mainly ministered in another state and came by appointment, and this entire time, he felt that I was being disobedient to that calling by not doing anything to proceed forward.
And I was always thinking, “You just do not have a clue what I am up against” and he didn’t, he had never seen this, because the majority of the congregation all held the same belief, we just WANTED to enjoy God and the gender of the messengers was of no importance ONLY the anointing of that messenger.
And I had prayed and prayed and asked the Lord to please tell him that I was not being disobedient, I just did not know what on earth I was supposed to do in the situation that I was in.

God worked out so that he did come to church on the other “ministers” night and heard EXACTLY what I had to deal with, and he sat there that night, every ounce of color completely drained out of his face, (not to mention mine) as we ALL were thoroughly beaten with the “twisted” classic verses from the Books of Timothy and Titus, and left with the resounding voice from the pulpit that WOMEN ARE TO BE SILENT IN CHURCH and ANY woman who preaches is NOT of God.

What really broke my heart about this was that one night (when Sir Silence WAS NOT there) a tiny little girl had asked for prayer because she wanted “to be a preacher like her late Papaw when she grew up” and we had all prayed and asked the Lord’s anointing on her life and then three weeks later, that same child is HEARING this.
But for me, those scriptures WERE NOTHING NEW, I had spent many nights crying and praying, asking the Lord, HOW, how on earth could I possibly do this? HOW when Paul’s teaching said ABSOLUTELY NOT?
Does anyone think, really BELIEVE that women in ministry DO NOT KNOW THESE SCRIPTURES?
We probably know them much better because we have had to tearfully WEIGH them against the SPIRIT OF GOD calling and prayerfully consider HOW THEY ARE BOTH ACCURATE.

To understand this, you HAVE to understand that the Bible is made up of WRITTEN accounts and Paul’s teachings are MAINLY LETTERS to individuals and churches AT THAT TIME.

Of course it IS the inspired WORD OF GOD, but as Paul said in the infamous 1 Timothy 2:12: ” But I suffer not (do not permit) a woman to teach, nor to usurp (have) authority over a man, but to be in silence.”

Now we have a couple of things going on here. Paul WAS persecuted, just like the persecutions WE are suffering. He wrote quite a bit about it.

ALL the disciples went through it because what they were called of God to do what did not line up in the elders and leaders EYES of what scripture taught.
They were not allowing for the supreme authority of God over human action.

Remember when Mary questioned “How can THIS be?” and Gabriel replied that “With God NOTHING shall be impossible.”

Paul also used the word I, he DID NOT say that “The LORD suffers not”…. the history on this is that he was under such persecution from a group of Jewish women, who were basically coming in and teaching AGAINST the Gospel, that HE forbade women to speak and that they had to ask their husbands whatever they needed to know AT HOME, because they were TO BE SILENT during his teachings.

So since that time you have this scripture being ran wild with and used a power tool against wives and women when PAUL also SAID this:

Galatians 3:28: ” There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither bond nor free, THERE IS NEITHER MALE NOR FEMALE; FOR YE ARE ALL ONE IN CHRIST.”
And what I find most HYPOCRITICAL about guys who carry this doctrine is the fact that say that it is perfectly “okay” for women to teach OTHER women and children… and it is “okay” for them to sing, answer phones at church… all sorts of activities INVOLVING THE USE OF ONE’S VOICE… and YET they argue the SILENCE scriptures.

That is a complete contradiction.
Using THAT same scripture… at NO time did he make allowance for these activities!
Did he boys? SILENCE MEANS SILENCE.
And this really tells the tale.. it is not about being scriptural pure and right.
It IS about good ol’ time honored male dominance.

Of course we are “permitted” (WOW, again what a word) to speak when we are making your phone calls, having church sales, teaching those women and children that you don’t want to have to deal with… rather convenient.

It is also the fear of their own shortcomings. It is their own need for church house superiority when we know that in the true body of Christ, HUMAN SUPERIORITY does NOT exist!

So I want to ask those who seem to think we would subject ourselves to this torment and hatred if our callings were NOT from God just for the purpose of somehow having “authority over a man” a few questions.
I want to ask WHAT was receiving your calling like?
Did you have the privilege to have your pastor proudly announce to the entire church that “Brother—– has been called to preach”?
Did everyone shake your hand and congratulate you?
Did your Mom and Grandmother cry tears of joy?
Did you receive calls of congratulations of fellow clergymen and invites to discuss thoughts on scripture?

I am SURE you did!

Let me tell you what it is like for US.

Our callings are kept on the down low and often we are under such pressure from those who say they are unbiased but secretly are, that we have to check and recheck every single word, scripture, and reference or face the “correction” by our peers which only “proves’ we shouldn’t be “doing a man’s job” anyway.

I have been under a couple of pastor’s and the one that shocked me the most was this little slip, I HAD the appointment and so he opens service and went rather long and brought me up with these UNFORGETTABLE words, “Well, I BAKED the cake, now Sister Nina is going to FROST it.”
Yeah, it was nice to know my sermon was PREJUDGED TO BE FLUFF.

And that is just about how seriously we usually get taken.
I did get some good feed back and a cute comment from one person who had noticed the remark.

And let those congratulatory hand shakes turn to looks of disgust and the reproach by fathers, coupled with the fear of people you GENUINELY like, turning on you because they now think your “of the devil” and no longer want anything to do with you.

And if you complain about the inequality, somehow it becomes YOUR job to go talk to Sir Silence and CONVINCE him of your argument because the church is NOT going to tangle with him, but if YOU can get HIM to CHANGE HIS MIND, that will be groovy.

It took FOUR years to finally get my ordination, a paper that means nothing to many but meant everything to me, for me it was PROOF that this is God’s will and I had asked God that.

And YES, my mother cried and my sister cried BUT they were crying because they KNEW what I had endured for that “piece of paper”.

A paper that must be renewed yearly and a separate “paper” allowing certification from my state to perform legal marriages that does not even HAVE a female option, it is pre-printed with the word HIS and HE before the name space that is filled out.

Now this is a state that has LEGAL homosexual marriage BUT not a form with a he/her for ministers names.
It gets better, this will be a bit graphic, but I’m not going to hide the attacks of the enemy due to my own discomfort, congratulatory calls.. yeah.. the very night after I received my calling, my telephone rang, I answered it and was promptly met with a man’s voice which said ” Will you———, to translate a little differently from his actual words… “perform certain oral services on a certain appendage”, now that one I could not even bring myself to even try to relay to my husband.

I have also received very select pm messages asking sexual questions, I would have been happy to discuss the Word and discuss SERIOUS concerns but as a servant of God, I KNEW the motivation behind it was NOT for the Gospel.
And my latest, shortly after starting the new “ladies”blog, I gained a “follower” whose profile held nothing back as far as intent nor his very graphic descriptions of what he felt were his “attributes”, that one I did let my husband read before removing him, because I have finally reached the point that I am no longer shocked, I understand that satan feels the need remind me of his feelings about my worth, and all I could truly say to this one was “Seriously?”
TELL ME, male ministers have to deal with this!?

I do realize we ALL are fought but you guys do not have a clue as to the weapons used against us.

And unfortunately certain of our brothers of the cloth ARE the greatest weapons in satan’s arsenal against us!
And those discussions of scripture, well, the most memorable of mine were with a guy who is absolutely as hard-core as it gets, his wife did not wear pants, drive, nor was she allowed to have ANY money whatsoever, or any knowledge of their finances, and any contact I HAD to have with him became a ” sword fight” of scripture to try to “test” my knowledge of the Bible.
It also consisted of the age-old “make-up wearing JEZEBEL” that tempts men to lust, to which I finally shut him up with, “Jesus knows I wear make-up, I wear it for me, and I’ll wear it like a clown if I want to.”

And Jesus taught that the responsibility for lust fell upon the one feeling it.
But my most favorite questions he asked as he was “agreeing with women “preachers” is this gem… “Do you know WHY God called women?” .. I couldn’t WAIT to hear this one.. so I asked “Why?” to which he replied “Because MEN wouldn’t do THEIR job’s.”

Hmmm. is that it? Considering the scriptures stating that we “are pre-ordained, predestined, and CALLED BEFORE THE FOUNDATIONS OF THE WORLD”

I would truly think that HE already knew what gender that He would create us to be.
But who am I to argue the WISDOM OF MAN?!!!

When I feared truly falling into disobedience I reached out to another pastor who is of the same belief system, and he had just announced one members call, and so after church, I BOLDLY (it took every ounce of courage I had) asked him, what was his thoughts on female ministers, he was QUICK to inform that “he was NOT recruiting” so I told him that was no big deal, I wasn’t asking for that, I just wanted to know if he thought it was acceptable with God.
He goes on to tell me that he grew up with women and personally had no problem with it BUT that his congregation would never “go for it”.
The irony in this was that this particular pastor is black with an all white (or at that time) congregation and my being a white woman asking a black man to advise me with my calling our chat was truly the equivalent of something that might have been said between our ancestors …You know, like “I am okay with you… I actually HAVE black friends.. but I can’t let my white friends know that.”

That was another time I was so hurt and embarrassed that I had even asked that I told no one for YEARS.
I truly DID NOT even want him to “take me in”, I honestly, at the time was seeking spiritual guidance, someone to help me understand what I was called to do and how to go about that and be in the will of God.

But God is so good and soon reconfirmed many things to me and sent me to a church where I was viewed as a PERSON, not male or female and opened up a path for me.
But I did have to leave everything I knew and walk by faith, not knowing if those doors would be slammed and the constant voices back and forth of “your going to hell because women are to be silent” versus “You must obey the Lord.. REGARDLESS.”

I know this has been long, but it has been necessary, because as I said GOD GAVE ME MY MINISTRY and I will not allow those who would read my work as fuel to further reproach and tear apart women ministers to continue to do so without a little warning, “TOUCH NOT MINE ANOINTED AND DO MY PROPHETS NO HARM”

This ministry is for ANYONE who wishes to stop by and hopefully study the Word of God with me and know that GOD DOES LOVE THEM!
And I would also take a moment to THANK all my TRUE brothers in the Lord, there is a world full of awesome, God-fearing men out there who do not hold these misogynistic beliefs toward us.

So I think it suffices to say, I have taken my stripes and if you are a woman going through this, please KEEP praying, keep STUDYING, and be ATTENTIVE to every door the Lord opens and don’t be afraid to move on when he allows one to close

At the height of my struggle with it, I had a dream, in this dream I was walking in this building that had all these little side rooms, and they looked like little hospital chapel rooms, they all had wood-paneled walls, and I kept walking and saw one room with an older man standing and praying, and it was like I knew I was SUPPOSED to go in there, and I said “I can’t go in there, it’s all old guys” and it was just like “GO”, so I went in and the gentleman just looked at me for a moment and not saying a word went back to praying, so I started praying too and woke up.

I took that as comfort but I assure you it has not been easy.

And I want to give YOU the verse that the Lord allowed me to stand on and STILL stand on today.
REMEMBER those who were persecuted and falsely called evil BEFORE you.
REMEMBER what Jesus said when they were CONSTANTLY ACCUSING HIM.

Matthew 10:24-27: ” The disciple is not above his master, nor servant above his lord. It is enough for the disciple to be as his master (teacher) and the servant as his lord,

If they have called the master of the house Beelzebub (a devil)  how much more shall they call them of his house?

Fear them not therefore; for there is nothing covered, that shall not be revealed; and hid, that shall not be known.
What I tell you in darkness, that speak ye in the light: and what ye hear in the ear, that preach ye from the housetops.”

I will admit this was one I was stuck on for a while… the Lord kept taking me to it very early on and I was not even getting it and then one day……
It means this IF and they DID call Him a devil FOR doing right, as His servants, we will ALSO be treated badly.
But He tells us NOT to be afraid, but to PREACH what He gives us from the “housetops” meaning LOUDLY, BOLDLY, and FOR ALL THE WORLD TO HEAR!
When they try to shut you up and discourage you, REMEMBER this verse, from when they also tried to shut up Peter and FORBADE the apostle to preach Jesus:
Acts 5:29:” Then Peter and the other apostles answered and said, We ought to obey God RATHER than men.”
This is one God had a person give me BEFORE I even understood the true ramifications of it:
2 Timothy 2:3,4: “Thou therefore endure hardness, as a good soldier of Jesus Christ.
No man that warreth (battle) entangleth himself with the affairs of THIS life; that HE MAY PLEASE HIM WHO HATH CHOSEN HIM TO BE A SOLDIER.”
That one I actually have written on my Bible case.
And this one I have written on apiece of paper in the front cover of my Bible, MEMORIZE it and quote it over yourself.
It is ALSO written by Paul, whom they love to argue, read some of the things Paul went through and how often he was persecuted for ALSO carrying the Gospel.
1 Corinthians 15:10: ” But BY THE GRACE OF GOD I AM WHAT I AM; AND HIS GRACE WHICH WAS BESTOWED UPON ME WAS NOT IN VAIN…..”
I apologize again for the length of this but there is no way to highlight a seventeen year journey using five hundred words or less 🙂 and I truly pray this helps even one you to stand your ground and stay your path, because I for one would rather men hate me than to stand before God and know that I failed Him in what He sent me here to do.
I love all of you and God bless you for reading and I appreciate it truly!
And I promise no matter how tough it looks, TRUST HIM and He will show you the doors that He opened BEFORE you were even created!

Dedicated to my beautiful uncle… till we meet again on those golden streets…

 

 

Uncle Monroe

Monroe Brown

 

 

Φλογιζω, Σαλπιζω, Εξυπνιζω, NBJ 2018

This beautiful song got me through many nights of tears: Shared from YouTube:

For a little more about women and the Word, please check out: AWAKENING / THE FORGOTTEN CHILD

“In the pits?”

He brought me up also out of an horrible pit, out of the miry clay, and set my feet upon a rock, and established my goings (steps). And he hath put a new song in my mouth, EVEN praise unto our God;  MANY SHALL SEE ITand fear (BELIEVE) and SHALL TRUST IN THE LORD.” Psalm 40:2,3

Nothing quite like being “down in the pits” spiritual pits, life pits, stress and aggravation pits, the path we walk can often be riddled with pit after pit carefully placed there by the enemy and those who are our earthly enemies to trip, trap, and send us tumbling down into that pit and the funny thing with pits is this, you are going to never free yourself from a pit.

No one can climb their way out of a pit, nothing to hold onto, nothing to hoist them upward, nothing to stand on. Just trapped, with only one way out, straight up.

And sometimes we we are in a pits we must be very very careful when it comes to how we get out of that thing, what may look like a rescue line thrown down into that pit, a blessing, even guised as an answered prayer can actually be an even bigger snare that once you are freed leaves you running headfirst into an even more sinister trap.

Which explains the necessity of seeking with our soul rather than thinking with our head, logic is not always what it appears. I’m gonna give you to examples of two men of God, two pits, two “rescues and then you’ll dig where I’m coming from about it.

Most know the story of Joseph, he was the son of Jacob and Jacob loved him dearly, because he loved his mother dearly and Joseph had the nature of his mother, he was gentle and kind and his father favored him and this caused some serious jealousy, resentment, and hate spewed at him from his brothers.

To put it mildly, his older brothers were really some rude, crude, and loud dudes whose hearts were in no way right. And if you have never read the story of Joseph, PLEASE read it, but for now we will pick it up here, when he has been sent out by his father to feed them (boy, you could get into some symbolism with that, maybe we will one day)

Genesis: 37:18-29: “And when they saw him AFAR off, even before he came near unto them, THEY CONSPIRED AGAINST HIM TO SLAY HIM. And they said one to another, Behold, this dreamer cometh.

 Come now therefore, and let us slay him, and cast him into SOME pit, and we will say, Some evil beast hath devoured him: and we shall see what shall become of his dreams.

 And Reuben heard it, and he delivered him out of their hands, and said, Let us not kill him. And Reuben said unto them, Shed no blood, but cast him into this pit that is in the wilderness, and lay no hand upon him; that he might rid (rescue) him out of their hands, to deliver him (take him) to his father again.

And it came to pass, when Joseph was come unto his brethre, that they strip Joseph out of his coat, his of many colors that was on him; And they took him and cast him into  a pit: and the pit was empty, there was no water in it.

And THEY SAT DOWN TO EAT BREAD : and they lifted up their eyes and looked, and behold, a company (group) of Ishmaelites came from Gilead with their camels bearing spicery and balm and myrrh, going to carry it down to Egypt.

And Judah said unto his brethren, What profit is it if we slay our brother, and conceal his death?

Come, and let us SELL him to the Ishmaelites, and let not our hand be upon him; for he is our brother and our flesh. And his brethren were content.

 Then there passed by Midianites merchantmen; and THEY DREW (pulled him up) AND LIFTED JOSEPH UP OUT OF THE PIT, AND SOLD JOSEPH FOR TWENTY PIECES OF SILVER: AND THEY BROUGHT JOSEPH INTO EGYPT.

 And Reuben RETURNED UNTO THE PIT; AND BEHOLD, JOSEPH WAS NOT IN THE PIT; and he rent (tore) his clothes.” 

Man, now that was some bad blood.

Let’s see what we got going on here, well they hated him and they were so enraged and jealous that their Dad had made a special tunic for Joseph and God had blessed Joseph with a dream and that just really added fuel to the fire. And notice that they were already plotting his murder and had decided his fate before he even reached them.

To get into a little spiritual insight here, think about what they said about “seeing what becomes of his dreams” people will secretly hate you and want nothing more, often because of sheer jealousy (which IS a spirit BTW) and want nothing more than to destroy your hopes and “dreams”.

Let’s talk about Reuben, He KNEW this was wrong, he COULD have stopped this, but he DIDN’T because he would not stand up for what was right, he wanted to do it on the down low.

He planned to go back and rescue Joseph and take him back home, but through his cowardice he talked them out of killing Joseph only to have him thrown into a pit from which he would be drawn up only to go into slavery.

Reuben could’ve, should’ve but didn’t and that made him just as guilty as his brothers.

This pit was in the “wilderness”, we all know what that means, wilderness, scary places that we have never been nor know anything about and certainly don’t know how we will survive there.

And to top it all off they feel so good about what they have done to their brother they sit down and eat while he is terrified in a pit trying to figure out why on earth they hate him. Then the greed kicks in and they decide a little profit is better than blood on their hands as if this were really  a lesser sin, talk about self-deception!

I am sure Joseph felt relief being pulled up out that pit, even not knowing what fate would await him, but just getting out of it and his “freedom” from the pit gained his brothers twenty pieces of silver but in the spirit world prophetically purchased the future slavery of the Hebrews by the Egyptians, the land into which Joseph was sold.

Let no one ever deceive you, every action has consequence and often those consequences linger and they linger for generations. 

Jeremiah is known as the prophet of doom, he had a job and he had to do his job and absolutely at no time was anyone happy about anything that came out of Jeremiah’s mouth.

But Jeremiah was blessed and he was a prophet of God and as they could hate he and they could try to kill him, they could never silence or kill the Word of God which came forth from him.

He went through so much that he even wished for a second that he had not been born, he proclaimed that he would no longer speak nor make mention of God’s name… but oh that fire, who can stop that fire?

God would raise His Spirit up and Jeremiah would once again regain focus. We are coming in on the story where they are mad, so mad because he has once again advised them with words they do not want to hear, and the saddest reality with the Book of Jeremiah is the same reality we have now, they could have listened, they could have obeyed God, but they didn’t.

Just like Reuben, a bad case of Could’ve, Should’ve but Didn’t. Had they repented and turned from their evil ways, God would have turned his wrath and spared them, let’s see how that went.

Jeremiah 38:1-13, 38: ” Then Shephatiah the son of Mattan, and Gedaliah the son of Pashur, and Jucal the son of Shelemiah, and Pashur, the son of Malchiah heard the words that Jeremiah had spoken unto all the people, saying,

Thus saith the Lord, He that remaineth in this city shall die by the sword, by the famine, and by the pestilence, but he that goeth forth to the Chaldeans shall live; for he shall have his life for a prey (prize) and shall live.

Thus saith the Lord, This city shall surely be given into the hand of the king of Babylon’s army, which shall take it.

 Therefore the princes SAID unto the king, We beseech thee, LET THIS MAN BE PUT TO DEATH; for thus he weakeneth the hands of (is discouraging) the men of war which remain in this city, and the hands of  all the people, in speaking such words unto them: for this man seeketh not the welfare of this people, but the hurt (harm).

  Then Zedekiah the king said, Behold, He is in your hand: for the king is not he that can do any thing against you.

THEN THEY TOOK JEREMIAH, AND CAST HIM INTO THE DUNGEON of Malchiah the son of Hammelech, THAT WAS IN THE COURT OF THE PRISON: AND LET DOWN JEREMIAH WITH CORDS, AND IN THE DUNGEON THERE WAS NO WATER, BUT MIRE: SO JEREMIAH SUNK IN THE MIRE.

NOW WHEN EBEDMELECH THE ETHIOPIAN, one of the eunuchs which was in the king’s house, heard that they had put Jeremiah in the dungeon; the king then sitting in the gate of Benjamin;

Ebedmelech went forth out of the king’s house, and SPAKE unto the king, saying, My lord the king, these men have done evil in all that they have done to Jeremiah the prophet, whom they have cast into the dungeon; and he like (likely) to die for hunger in the place where he is: for there is no more bread in the city.

Then the king commanded Ebedmelech the Ethiopian, saying, Take from hence thirty men with thee, and TAKE UP JEREMIAH THE PROPHET OUT OF THE DUNGEON BEFORE HE DIE.

So Ebedmelech  took the men with him, and went into the the house of the king under the treasury, and TOOK THENCE OLD CAST CLOUTS (old clothes) AND ROTTEN RAGS, AND LET THEM DOWN BY CORDS INTO THE DUNGEON TO JEREMIAH.

AND EBEDMELECH THE ETHIOPIAN SAID UNTO JEREMIAH, PUT NOW THESE OLD CAST CLOUTS AND ROTTEN RAGS UNDER THINE ARMHOLES (armpits) AND JEREMIAH DID SO.

SO THEY DREW UP JEREMIAH WITH CORDS (ropes) AND TOOK HIM UP OUT OF THE DUNGEON: AND JEREMIAH REMAINED IN THE COURT OF THE PRISON.

So Jeremiah abode in the court of the prison UNTIL the day that Jerusalem was taken and he was there when Jerusalem was taken.” 

As with Reuben, the king could’ve stopped this, Jeremiah was a prophet and the king knew this, so he should’ve stopped this but just like Reuben, he didn’t. 

But Ebedmelech had compassion, and courage and he could, he knew he should and he did!

And a eunuch and his use of old clothes and rotten rags is also very interesting because sometimes we can be pulled up out of pits by some very unexpected people using some very humble things, things that may not look so rescue worthy, maybe not quite what we were thinking of but yet perfect for the job of rescuing us and making the pull up a little less painful.

Notice neither of these pits had water, Joseph’s was empty and Jeremiah sunk up as he also would be “stuck” in bondage until Jerusalem was taken. Both were “free” from the pits,but they still were not quite “home free” and in life certain things can look good, they can look like a way out, people can seem to be your friends and be coming to “save” you out of the pit and in truth only be saving you because it will profit them something.

So you have to be careful when you reach up to hold onto that rope that has been dropped down to you and make certain it is the one that will lead to true freedom. Pay close attention to who is on the other end of it.

And if you know someone is in danger of “being thrown into a pit”, meaning someone cooking up plans against them, or if you see someone already “in a pit”, PLEASE don’t EVER allow yourself to be the one who SHOULD’VE, COULD’VE, BUT DIDN’T!

Because only God can truly deliver, only God can reach down that far and pull us up, only God can release us from being “stuck” in that miry clay of bondage and suffering and only God can set our feet on that firm foundation, on that solid rock. And only God can put a NEW song in our mouth and once others see us come UP OUT OF A PIT OF CERTAIN DEATH AND DESTRUCTION, A PIT OF NO RETURN, AS OUR SCRIPTURE TELLS US, THEY SEE IT, THEY THEN BELIEVE, THEY THEN TRUST GOD BECAUSE THEY HAVE SEEN THE PIT WE HAVE BEEN DELIVERED FROM! 

Blessing, Love & Peace till next, keep your eyes on the prize! Love Sister Nina

Φλογιζω NBJ 2017

“Raised by wolves”

“And Joshua the son of Nun, the servant of the Lord, died, being an hundred and ten years old. And they buried him in the border of his inheritance in Timnath heres, in the mount of Ephraim, on the north side of the hill Gaash.

And also all that generation were gathered unto their fathers (had died) and there AROSE ANOTHER GENERATION after them, which KNEW NOT THE LORD, NOR YET THE WORK WHICH HE HAD DONE FOR ISRAEL.

And the children of Israel did evil in the sight of the Lord, and served Baalim: And they forsook the Lord, the God of their fathers, which brought them out of the land of Egypt, and FOLLOWED other gods, of the gods OF THE PEOPLE THAT WERE ROUND ABOUT THEM, and bowed themselves unto them, and PROVOKED THE LORD TO ANGER.

AND THEY FORSOOK THE LORD, AND SERVED Baal and Ashtaroth (pagan Canaanite “deities”demons).” Judges 2:8-13

About my title… I actually like wolves, the furry animal ones and believe in supporting conservation of their habitats and their protection, so this is going to be about those OTHER wolves.

The spiritual ones and we all know that they are among us and they do try to fit in and fake you out as to their true identity but those are just one type of wolf, I want to talk to you about another.

Just plain old run of the mill wolves, ones who are just naturally exactly what they are. Never been saved, never even thought about it, just spend their lives doing whatever they want, whenever they want and usually not much of it is good.

Wolves run in packs, but they always have a leader,or leader ‘couple”, not always by being the strongest, but by taking care of the needs of the pack, knowing what the pack needs and making it happen and sometimes they will take in young pups to raise as their own and make them a member of the pack.

I am quite afraid this is the major problem so many Christians have in staying the course for Christ. If you had been “raised” up in the world by parents or a parent that did NOT serve God or teach you anything about God or exposed you to false religions, and you had grown up in  a home with drinking, partying, and all the things that come with that, while maybe socially acceptable, maybe even holding to some value system, still in no way has prepared you to live a life with behavior fitted according to the standard of God.

Kinda like, the old phrase, “When in Rome, do as the Romans do” more less, do as your parents, your friends, do as you have been taught. What about those little pups that are adopted into the pack?

Same deal, we respond as we have been taught. I do know that some things God just places in us at birth, that deep intuition knowing right from wrong and that little tugging that sets off the alarm that even when a wolf says something that is happening is okay, you know, by that feeling in your stomach that it really isn’t.

The Lord instills that in us that no matter where life takes us that we will long for more, we will know there is more than just this life, and we will one day break away from the pack and seek that which we have never known and have never been taught because one day we realize that just because the pack takes us in and raised us as their own, still DOES NOT MAKE US A WOLF.

Often when you announce your salvation people will seem genuinely happy for you and they will even congratulate you, encourage you, and wolves especially will sometimes confess they “probably need to get saved too” and this all seems good.

 BUT if you have been “raised by wolves” I promise you all they are doing is marking off your new territory as their new hunting ground and they will soon want you to get you back running with the pack.

And I have seen this far to many times, someone will get saved and soon  the old friends show up along with the old habits, and the old ways after God has delivered them from that bondage because you can’t be a lamb and run with wolves!

People end up back on drugs, back out in sin because they refuse to “lose their life” in order to find it and listen to the wrong people.

Matthew 16:24-26: ” Then said Jesus unto his disciples, If any man will come after me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross, and follow me.

For whosoever will save his life shall lose it; and whosoever will lose his life for my sake shall find it.

For what is a man profited, if he gain the whole world, and lose his own soul? or what shall a man give in exchange for his soul?

I understand this somewhat referred to the deaths of his followers BUT  I also believe He was also referring to the loss of our lifestyles, friends, and anything we have surrendered at the cross in order to serve Him. Denying ourselves is denying the will of the flesh and the desire to return to the behaviors and sin we were freed from.

2 Corinthians 5:17: ‘Therefore if any man be in Christ, HE IS A NEW CREATURE (creation) : OLD THINGS ARE PASSED AWAY; BEHOLD ALL THINGS ARE BECOME NEW.”

ALL NEW! Doesn’t get any better than that, every sin, every failure, every mistake covered by the blood and washed away FOREVER! And we’ve got to keep it that way!

You know the best defense against a wolf? STAND YOUR GROUND they want you running when they attack, so you have to stand your ground and they will back down and back off and you can’t let them keep hanging around.

Here’s the WORD on it, to go back to our starter verse, Judges chapter one deals with how the tribes were told to destroy the inhabitants out of the lands God had given them and the fact that many did not destroy them but rather kept company with them and they were soon visited by an angel of the Lord to be reminded of WHAT they had been told. 

Judges 2:1-4: “And an angel of the Lord came up from Gilgal to Bochim, and said , I made you to go up out of Egypt, and have brought you unto the land which I sware unto your fathers; and I SAID I WILL NEVER BREAK MY COVENANT WITH YOU,

AND YE SHALL MAKE NO LEAGUE (treaty) WITH THE INHABITANTS OF THIS LAND; YE SHALL THROW DOWN THEIR ALTARS: BUT YE HAVE NOT OBEYED MY VOICE: WHY HAVE YOU DONE THIS?

WHEREFORE I ALSO SAID, I WILL NOT DRIVE THEM OUT FROM BEFORE YOU: BUT THEY SHALL BE AS THORNS IN YOUR SIDES, AND THEIR GODS SHALL BE A SNARE UNTO YOU.” 

Never heard it? Well, we have now, if we do not throw down those spiritual altars, you know all the things that have been more important than God, all the spiritual altars where God-given virtues have been sacrificed for the pleasures of this world. And have no relations with the “inhabitants” of the land of your past, because the will be allowed to become a thorn in your flesh and their “gods” of drugs, sex, and money will become a trap to you. So watch out for those wolves, they are real, and they are devious, never trust them, don’t listen when they start to howl and don’t back down when they growl, stand your ground and they will quit coming around!

Φλογιζω Σαλπιζω NBJ 2017

I love this song, when I was “in the world” I loved music, all music and much of it, not quite what a Christian should listen too, so I’d get “songs in my head” that I really did not want there and I actually prayed and prayed that when I got “music in my head” that it would be Gospel, and when that time came, this was the song!

“Bettin’ your Boots”

“My son IF thou be SURETY  FOR THY FRIEND, (vouch for, stand in guarantee for) IF thou hast stricken thy hand with a stranger (“shook on it” made a deal with,) Thou art snared with (you are bound by) the words of THY mouth, thou art taken (trapped captive) with the words of THY mouth.” Proverbs 6:1,2

Now, I really can’t plead deep revelation for this post but inspiration came while having my usual breakfast of four cups black coffee to one big bowl of ice cream, now that’ll get ya goin.. or future health issues, not sure yet.. 🙂 but I’ll go with “get ya goin morning goodness”!

Anyway, me and sweetie usually watch morning news but this morning I put it on westerns for him, we have a pretty good deal, I walk by and he is watching something and brains are being splattered by Van Damme or Seagal, or someone being ran through with a sword, the stuff I lived for as former entertainment, and I can’t blame that one on my brothers, they’d be out playing and I would be stuck in front of the TV watching Robin Hood and the Musketeers, and I know if it is staring me in the face, I’ll sit down and end up watching it now and God does not want that, there is nothing productive for the Kingdom in filling our minds with violence, it only achieves the opposite.

But anyway, he would be watching, you know the “classics” but NOW, I’m like.. “OH! My goodness, WHAT are you watching! DON’T let THOSE words in my house, HONEY!” and so we tried closed captions and I walk by, ALWAYS at the right time… and be all “AH, they are STILL coming into my house, even without sound!” “Oh and the VIOLENCE!”

So we now we are resigned to faith-based shows, home, family, and of course your old tried and true western’s, which I detested growing up but now how found a special nostalgic place in my heart for their “cleanliness” anyway.. any good western “worth its spit” has to have a good old-fashioned rigged card game set up by some ornery, good for nothin’ swindler, who aims to cheat all the hard-working ranch hands out of even their last hard-earned dime… and in this baby, even their boots.

My inspiration came when one of the main characters finally bought the PERFECT boots, they were grand and he wasn’t even the one WHO WAS gambling, it was his friend, “pardner”, uncle, something like that… you know someone whose OPINION would matter, someone who would have INFLUENCE over the actions of another.

And the one who was DOING the gambling and had lost all his money wanted TO BET the boots of the one who “didn’t even have a horse in that race” and after some slick talkin’ and the young one cotton to ‘im, he LET him BET his boots.

And I thought, that is all kinds of crazy, and in real life, WHY would we ever do that? WHY would we let someone who is obviously not running their own life very well, drag us into their mess and USE what is ours to make even a bigger mess?

But you know what, we do it and we can do it and NOT even realize we are doing it.

Get some clarity going on here… the Bible teaches us to be good to everyone, to share, to care, to help, and to shoulder another’s burdens with them, Jesus taught us that if someone asks us to walk one mile that we SHOULD go the extra step and walk two miles with them.

BUT those teachings are about our brothers and sisters in Christ and those who are in the household of the Lord. And I have friends right now who have helped me and my family out beyond anything we could have imagined during our recent medical issues and one friend in particular who opened a door that I desperately needed and I am forever grateful.

So I want to be clear that what I am referring to is this.. when people are in SIN and deceptive practices, you CAN NOT be part of that with them. God blesses us for helping others with upright causes, but HE WILL NEVER BLESS SIN,OR DECEPTION.

And sometimes there are people who are NOT what you may think and they are NOT who you may think they are and fond feelings for people and hearts of compassion and wanting to help another out can actually lead you into meeting up with “a snake in the grass” and sometimes “bettin’ your boots” and LOSING something that means everything to you.

That is why that scripture WARNS us that if we fall into that trap we will be SNARED by that trap.

No one likes trappers and no one wants trapped, so it is IMPORTANT to watch out for them so that you don’t put your foot in one.

So maybe today, you are in a situation that someone is asking you to so something or help them do something, or be part of something that you KNOW is not good, not right and maybe they are playing on your sympathy or threatening you with the loss of that relationship if you do not go along with them for the ride.

But a true friend, someone who is REALLY worth your time, your compassion, your help would NEVER ask you to so something wrong or sacrifice something of yours for the sake of something they DESIRE or a scheme that they have hatched.

Love PROTECTS and love DOES NOT SEEK ITS OWN, that means they would look out for you, not put a price on what you can do for them.

So watch out for it and I am sure the “gambler” who wants to lay bets PAID FOR BY YOU will get mad and have a “burr in his saddle” and maybe even “hit the dusty trail” and “ride on into the sunset” right on out of your life, let ’em ride!

No one needs users and God does NOT want His children used!

1 Timothy 5:22:…..NEITHER BE PARTAKER of (do NOT SHARE IN) OTHER MEN’S (people) SINS: KEEP THYSELF PURE.”

Of course in the show the buddy kept his word and got the dude’s boots back, because cowboys always kept their word.

But life is not a television show and cowboys may not always have their buddies backs and those snakes in the grass can really bite into your life spreading fangfuls of pure poison and the worst part.. you don’t always get your boots backs, usually those babies are lost and they are lost forever, so keep them on your own feet!

Enough said?

Φλογίζω Σαλπιζω NBJ 2017

“In the den”

“Then said these men, We shall not find any occasion (reason to accuse) against this Daniel, except (unless) we find it against him concerning the law of his God. Then these presidents (overseers) and princes assembled together to the king, and said unto him, King Darius, live for ever. All the presidents of the kingdom, the governors, and the princes, the counsellors, and the captains, have consulted together to establish a royal statue, and to make a firm decree, that whosoever shall ask a petition of any God or man for thirty days, save (except) of thee, O king, he shall be cast into the den of lions.

Now, O king, establish the decree, and sign the writing, that it not be changed, according to the law of the Medes and Persians, which altereth not (does not change). Wherefore king Darius signed the writing (written decree) and the decree. Now when Daniel knew the writing had been signed, he went into his house; and his windows being open in his chamber (room) toward Jerusalem, he kneeled upon his knees three times a day and prayed, and gave thanks before his God, as he did aforetime ( as he had been doing before this). Then these men assembled, and found Daniel praying and making supplication before his God.

Then they came near and spake before (spoke to) the king concerning the king’s decree. Hast thou not signed a decree, that every man that shall ask a petition of any God or man within thirty days, save of thee (except you), O king, shall be cast into the den of lions?  

The king answered and said, This thing is true, according to the law of the Medes and Persians, which altereth (changes) not.

Then answered they and said before the king, That Daniel, which is of the children of the captivity of Judah, regardeth not thee, O king, nor the decree that thou hast signed, but maketh his petition three times a day.

Then the king, when he heard these words, was sore (greatly) displeased with himself, and set his heart on Daniel to deliver him: and he laboured (strived) till the going down of the sun to deliver him.

Then these men assembled unto the king, and said unto the king, Know, O king, that the law of the Medes and Persians is, That no decree nor statue which the king established may be changed.

Then the king commanded, and they brought Daniel, and cast (tossed) him into the den of lions, Now the king spake and said unto Daniel, Thy God whom thou serve continually, HE WILL DELIVER THEE.

And a stone was brought and laid upon the mouth of the den; and the king sealed it with his own signet (signet ring), and with the signet of his lords; that the purpose might not be changed concerning Daniel (that they could not accuse the king of changing the order).

Then the king went to his palace, and passed the night fasting; neither were instruments of  musick (musical instruments) brought before him: and his sleep went (fled) from him. 

Then the king arose very early in the morning, and went in haste unto the den of lions. And when he came to the den, he cried with a lamentable (pained) voice unto Daniel: and the king spake, and said unto Daniel, O Daniel, O Daniel, SERVANT OF THE LIVING GOD, IS THY GOD whom thou servest continually, ABLE TO DELIVER THEE FROM THE LIONS?

Then said Daniel unto the king, O king, live for ever.  My God hath sent his angel, and hath shut the lions mouths, that they have not hurt me: forasmuch as before him innocency (innocence) was found in me; and also before thee, O king, have I done no hurt (wrong).

Then the king exceedingly glad for him, and commanded that they should take Daniel up OUT of the den, and no manner of hurt was found upon him (he was completely unharmed)  BECAUSE HE BELIEVED IN HIS GOD.

And the king commanded, and they brought those men which had accused Daniel, and they cast them into the den of lions, them, their children, and their wives; and the lions had the mastery of them (overpowered them) and brake all their bones in pieces, or ever they came at the bottom of the den (before they ever hit the bottom of the den).

Then king Darius wrote unto all people, nations, and languages, that dwell in all the earth; Peace be multiplied unto you. I make a decree. That in every dominion of my kingdom men tremble and fear before the God of Daniel: for HE IS THE LIVING GOD, AND STEADFAST FOR EVER, AND HIS KINGDOM THAT WHICH SHALL NOT BE DESTROYED, AND HIS DOMINION SHALL BE EVEN UNTO THE END. HE DELIVERETH (delivers) AND RESCUETH (rescues), AND HE WORKETH SIGNS AND WONDERS IN HEAVEN AND IN EARTH, who hath DELIVERED Daniel FROM THE POWER OF THE LIONS.” Daniel 6:5-27

Love this story, how could anyone not? I especially love the terms of his enemies referring to him as “this” Daniel and “that” Daniel. We are all at some point a “this” Daniel or a “that” Daniel. The this that the enemy desperately wants out of the way and the that that the enemy thinks he has out of the way.

We are all faced with those lions of life and we are all faced with circumstances we just really do not want to be in. And those roaring lions which Jesus so described the devil as are quite intimidating sometimes as they seek to devour us because those roars that we hear in the distance proves to warn us of impending doom and certain destruction can be more horrifying than the final bone crushing bite.

 Those are the times that we need a friend to be outside that den, Darius could NOT go back on his own decree and he could NOT find any way of getting around the fact that Daniel had no choice other than go into that den, He could NOT actually go inside the den and face the lions with Daniel but what he COULD do is SPEAK and REASSURE Daniel that His God WOULD DELIVER HIM.

He COULD fast and pray all night on behalf of Daniel. Everyone needs a friend but we all especially need a friend when you are in a lion’s den and you know that even though you must hear those roars and face the fear of them head on, face to face, knowing someone else is outside the den having faith and keeping vigil can give courage and hope even in the most hopeless of circumstances.

I snagged a verse from the sermon at church Sunday night to carry my family through a little something…. it is just part of the verse but so powerful when you let it sink in…  and I want to share it for anyone who is facing uncertainty:

Romans 4:18: ” Who AGAINST HOPE (contrary to) BELIEVED IN HOPE…..”

That is even the face of hopelessness, with absolutely NO REASON to hope, to STILL BELIEVE IN HOPE. And Daniel BELIEVED in that hope, even though he was already slated for slaughter, HE BELIEVED IN THE HOPE OF DELIVERANCE BY HIS GOD.

Daniel believed God would deliver him and his friend king Darius believed God would deliver him and we need to also to BELIEVE that today more than ever.

Know that if you are in the den God has someone ALREADY positioned outside on your behalf having faith on your behalf, keeping vigil through that night and if you are outside don’t forget to keep vigil for another whose faith my be wavering for fear that those lions could devour at a moments notice.  Darius made the new decree that ALL should tremble before the LIVING GOD. 

Darius also twice referred to Daniel as having served the Lord continually, continually striving to that standard of God, as we lift our lives up into the hands of God and into His care and the standard He has established, He will in turn lift up a defense, his war banner, on our behalf against our enemies, whether spiritual, physical sickness, or emotional or financial burdens, that we are His and He does fight on our behalf, as in that verse, He will work wonders in heaven and in earth.

Isaiah 59:19: “So shall they FEAR the name of the Lord from the west, and his glory from the rising of the sun, WHEN THE ENEMY SHALL COME IN LIKE A FLOOD, THE SPIRIT OF THE LORD SHALL LIFT UP A STANDARD (banner) AGAINST HIM.

 Peace and love till next time! Φλογιζω Σαλπιζω NBJ 2017 

This song is really too peppy for this post.. but I do love it and it is really upbeat and I don’t know what the deal is with the name but the lyrics say it all!

“How shall I come….”

“In the year that King Uzziah died I saw also the Lord sitting upon a throne, high and lifted up, and his train (skirts of garment) filled the temple, Above it stood the seraphims (a type of angel) each one had six wings; with twain (two) he covered his face, and with twain he covered his feet, and with twain he did fly.

And one cried unto another, and said, Holy, holy, holy, is the Lord of hosts: The whole earth is full of his glory. And the post of the door moved at the voice of him who cried, and the house was filled with smoke.

Then said I, Woe is me! for I am undone (surely to be destroyed) because I am a man of unclean lips; for mine eye have seen the King, the Lord of hosts.” Isaiah 6:1-5

Now, ever think this is the SAME God we tend to get a little too chummy with when we choose to attribute to Him purely human qualities, attitudes, and thoughts?

Please do not get me wrong, this is sincerely designed to just be a little thought-provoking not to hit people over the head with the heretic stick! So please, hear me out.  There is no need for me to point out what a fight the true church is having… between dealing with Satan and the forces of hell, spiritual wickedness in our high places, and the onslaught of the candy coats who completely trash God’s word in favor of  humanism, with their doctrine of “if it feels good, it must be good” leading people into destruction and yet PROMISING them they are saved, when any true Bible reader KNOWS it says otherwise.

I think somewhere along the way, another philosophy has also manifested itself, the thought that God can be on OUR level again, do not get me wrong, we NEED the personal relationship with Him and we have to have that, the oneness, closeness, and togetherness but when we start to view Him as our BBF we may be getting a little TOO chummy.

HE IS our best friend, but HE IS HOLY. He is STILL God over heaven and earth, HE IS still a supernatural BEING while we are well.. just beings! Yes, even though He did say He has called us friends and WE ARE, I still think there is a major need to turn back into reverence and Holiness.

I am a huge advocate of POURING your heart out, your innermost fears, thoughts, and all that you are to Him and will ALWAYS stand by that and teach that but we must always remember there is a fine line between allowing Him to heal us and console us and taking Him for GRANTED.

Once we gain that assurance, that love, and that place of being completely engulfed in His presence, we can be very easily swayed in OUR thinking that we can become lax and write off the wrong behaviors as simply thinking “He understands”.  With a calling on you life and His gifts bestowed on you for the use of edifying the church.. I would not automatically assume that He is just going to understand your failure to use any of it.

Notice the first thing that happened to Isaiah, horrifying fear BECAUSE in the presence of the glory of the Lord, he immediately felt conviction for his sin, as he said a man of “unclean “lips and in that presence he knew the possibly that he could be completely destroyed.

One of our biggest issues of today, a lax in the fear of the Lord’s Holiness. Again this is not to beat or badger, it is to prompt thinking, the Glory is coming, NOTHING is stopping that, it is actually already here but whether or not one will be able to stand in it is another question.

Isaiah 6:6,7: ” Then flew one of the seraphims unto me, having a live coal in his hand, which he had taken with tongs from of the altar; And he laid it upon my mouth, and said, Lo, this hath TOUCHED thy lips; and thine iniquity is taken away, and thy sin purged (atoned for, covered).”

So think about THAT, Isaiah had RECEIVED A VISIT FROM THE LORD, allowed to see into the heavenly places, allowed to see THE ABSOLUTE GLORY of the Lord so strong, it became as smoke and YET, AFTER this, he had to undergo the cleansing fire of God, to “clean up” his mouth and consecrate it, in order to receive his commission from the Lord.

That fire that we are often so fearful of approaching, because often we as humans are comfortable right where we are in our salvation, if many were to be honest they simply do not want to undergo the purification process because it can be very “painful” and once we have accepted that process we are then required and bound to a higher level of responsibility.

As I have said before and will probably say again..and again.. I believe this is why there are people God will bestow multi-gifts and talents upon, NOT because they are special but because THEY ARE WILLING and His work will be done.

Think about the statement Jesus made.. “Many are called but few are chosen” as a very new Christian, my first pastor explained this to me and he was a wonderful man of God, whose advice that early in my walk, forever holds impact for me, many ARE called, they ARE saved but FEW ARE chosen.. chosen vessels…

Think of Paul, when Jesus said that he was “A chosen vessel”, now think about a vessel.. what is that?

A vessel IS a COMPLETELY EMPTY CONTAINER, it has NOTHING of itself.. it does not plan its own use…it does not have an agenda.. it does not REFUSE to be used… it only has ONE purpose.. TO BE FILLED with whatever IS CHOSEN BY THE MAKER OF THAT VESSEL.

The reason it is FEW is due to the refusal to be “emptied” and allow Him, through the Holy Spirit, to do whatever He wants.

Like Isaiah, we must be willing once He has presented us with that glory to allow Him to purify, sanctify, and burn everything that hinders out of us until we are a suitable vessel, and then the callings and gifts can be manifested AS HE WILLS.

Now to “word-out” that THIS is a “Christian” condition. Luke 12:43-48 deals with the parable of the servants, the servants are left with the tasks given by the Lord and instead of doing as they have been commanded, they party, drink, and BEAT the others because the think they will not get caught because they think he is not coming back, and this is the clincher;

“And that servant which KNEW his lord’s will, and PREPARED NOT HIMSELF, NEITHER DID ACCORDING TO HIS WILL, shall be beaten with MANY stripes,

BUT HE THAT KNEW NOT, and did commit such things, shall be beaten with FEW stripes, FOR UNTO WHOMSOEVER MUCH IS GIVEN, OF HIM, SHALL BE MUCH REQUIRED; and to whom men have committed much, of him they will ask the more.”

The operative word’s there, KNEW and prepared NOT, and then greater mercy shown to the one who did not know. 

James 3:1: “My brethren, be not many masters (let not many of you be teachers) knowing that we shall receive the greater condemnation (stricter judgment).”

That really needs no explanation.. bad news for the candy coats and prosperity teachers though! We are responsible for EVERY word we have taught in His name.

And the final one, that I think maybe was going on in Isaiah’s  thoughts, he HAD to know because it was what terrified him as far as things he could fall under.

James 4:17: “Therefore, TO HIM THAT KNOWETH TO DO GOOD, AND DOETH IT NOT, TO HIM IT IS SIN.”

That is about as close as it can cut, so the choice is ours but please NEVER take for granted the Lord, his goodness, His mercy, and HOW INCREDIBLY BLESSED it is to be chosen of Him and never forget we are still accounted, as those servants, for doing those jobs, or failing to do those jobs.

The job has been given, the rest is up to us but the final reward/reprimand is up to Him, don’t be fooled into thinking otherwise, that is a human thought! The glory of the Lord to be revealed as never before and it is HIS glory, our job is to JUST LET HIM DO HIS WILL THROUGH WILLING VESSELS.

“Wherewith (HOW) shall I come before the Lord, and bow myself before the high God?

SHALL I come before him with burnt offerings, with calves of a year old?

 WILL the Lord be pleased with thousands of rams, or with ten thousands of rivers of oil?

SHALL I give my firstborn for my transgressions, The fruit of my body for the sin of my soul?

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

Reverence and Respect HIS HOLINESS! Submit yourself, ALL of yourself HUMBLY unto Him!

Φλογίζω Σαλπιζω NBJ 2016

 

 

 

Am I too late?

Most have experienced the pain of waiting too late. Too late in making a decision and living with that regret for years or sometimes life. Being late to an event or the fear that maybe you have already arrived too late and lost out on something you had long looked forward to, or feel that if you could only go back and change this or do that, everything would be different.

I feel like this goes on in the kingdom pretty often, people feel like they have waited too long in moving out into their calling, or they were hurt and rejected once they did step out, I promise you that is just part of the deal, you step out for the Lord you’re gonna be hurt AND rejected but take it for the compliment that it is! The enemy is NOT going to waste his time (because he knows it is short) fighting people for fun, he fights what he knows is a threat.

So they feel like they maybe they were mistaken about even being called, (another trick from the enemy) they feel they can’t “go back” to “that” church or “those” people because there is just “too much water under the bridge.”

Have you ever thought of it this way, maybe the WATER under that bridge is exactly what the enemy is trying to keep you out of! Maybe you think you missed your calling, waited too long, and too much time has passes, too many struggles have ensued… Got some good news on that story, what if you discovered one day that it was ALL part of the plan for your life to get you EXACTLY where you need to be spiritually in order to go EXACTLY where God wants to take you?

We’ve got two situations going here so we will hit the both, It is NEVER too late! Until you are dead and in the ground then it is too late to pursue the call of God on your life no matter if it was given fifty years ago because: “For the gifts and calling of God are without repentance (ARE IRREVOCABLE).” Romans 11:29

Which means God is NEVER going to say, “Oh sorry, I really did not mean to give you that, let me just take that back.” NO it means He has given them for ever and ever.

And for whatever reason the have been unused I want you to be encouraged, get back up, get back on that boat, do not care who likes you, who doesn’t and do the will of your Father because it is Him that we answer to and sometimes, we are required to swallow our pride for the kingdom because pride does not belong in the kingdom and God ALWAYS deals with those who come against you and your calling, but if you hide it and refuse to use it, what reason would he have to exonerate you from your enemies, and prove them wrong?

Now to prove it is not too late, remember in Revelation when Jesus is warning and encouraging the churches as to what he expects of them, He is speaking to the church of Ephesus, who left their first love, I just want to use part of this verse, because these people WERE saved, their WERE known to Him, “Remember therefore from whence (where) thou art fallen, and repent, and DO THY FIRST WORKS; Revelation 2;5 (1)

So He is telling them DO your FIRST works. I want to get this out-of-the-way, I know there could be the argument against this, because of the verse “called in one hope of your calling” but if you do not accept your ONE hope on this earth to do your job, and use your calling, you sure aren’t going to need it in heaven or New Jerusalem because everyone there will already be saved.

So if you are reading this, rest assured it is NOT too late! I do want to warn you of a common snare with this, once “people” find out you are called, many of them can not wait to give advice and tell you what you should do” it is YOUR job from the Lord, HE will put in your heart or give to you by prophecy what you should do. Don’t need it please don’t listen to it unless you want to ask your Pastor, or prayer partner their thoughts on the best way to go about something, but please don’t let anyone influence you in your work for God, He calls us all differently.

Situation two, we’ll call, “You are growing, growing, growing” Think about David, do you realize that David was anointed THREE times, anointed means to be separated for a specific purpose, the first time He was only about fifteen years old, and this was done privately, only in the presence of his family,

1 Samuel 16:13:” Then Samuel took the horn of oil, and anointed him in the midst of his brethren; and the spirit of the Lord came upon David from that day FORWARD…….”

From this point on, the spirit of God was with him, and even though he had ALREADY been anointed to be King, the time was not yet, and when he was sent to Saul, it was NOT as his replacement but as his harpist!

His next task would be to fight the mighty giant Goliath and I don’t even think David was even thinking about his future or the job he was already in training for, when he ran AT Goliath it was in confidence of the Lord, that no one was going to threaten and enslave the people of the Living God, and at NO point did he tell Goliath “I come to you as the future King” He told him that he came in “NAME of the Lord of hosts, the God of the armies of Israel”.

He then went on to endure Saul’s insane jealously, hiding and fearing for his life, battling bloody battle upon battle, growing and growing into who he had been created to be.

He is anointed a second time, 2 Samuel 2:4,”And the men of Judah came, and there they anointed David king over the house of Judah….” this time is publicly with his countrymen.

And on he goes… growing and growing, battling and battling, “friend” and foe, learning to deal with situations and all the qualities he would NEED, imperative to his success and survival. He has been anointed privately, publicly, and now he will be anointed and accepted by the elders as King over all of Israel.

“So all the elders of Israel came to the king, to Hebron; and king David made a league with them in Hebron before the Lord; and they anointed David king over Israel. David was thirty years old when he began to reign, and he reigned forty years.” 2 Samuel 5;3,4

The fulfillment of that promise unfolded over the period of his life that he was fourteen, fifteen years old until he was thirty, and even NOW part of the divine purpose for the throne of David is STILL unfolding and will be until the return of Christ!

How much do you think he matured and grew and learned and developed over those fifteen odd years? What if he had given up half way through and decided to “rethink” what had been told to him at that private anointing?

David was successful in that long journey because he never lost focus of the big picture, and allowed himself to be exactly what Go wanted, a vessel and David knew that no army, no power, nothing of this earth could defeat God or stop His divine will for Israel and this is what keep David going… and going.. it was NEVER easy and I am sure he experienced many moments of absolute sorrow during those dark times but he always held on and we must also!

Do not give up on your calling! I love the story of Nehemiah and it has been encouragement many times for me personally, I actually have it written and taped in the front of my Bible, along with many other verses, we NEED this encouragement.

This took place  as Nehemiah set about to rebuild the wall and the enemies came forth to STOP THE WORK and I love this verse, Nehemiah 6:9; “ For they ALL made us AFRAID, saying, their hands SHALL BE WEAKENED FROM (because of) the work, that it not be done. NOW THEREFORE, O GOD, STRENGHTEN MY HANDS.”

This is a great verse to remember when “people” are telling you that “it” is impossible to accomplish what GOD SAID you could and trying to discourage you with the thought that the work is too hard and you can not possibly finish it.

Maybe what you think is a little too late could actually be right on time,”Now a certain man was sick, named Lazarus, of Bethany, the town of Mary and her sister Martha. (It was that Mary which anointed the Lord with ointment and wiped his feet with her hair, whose brother Lazarus was sick.) Therefore his sisters sent unto him, saying, Lord, behold, he whom thou lovest is sick. When Jesus heard that, he said, This sickness is NOT unto death, BUT FOR THE GLORY OF GOD, that the Son of God might be glorified thereby.

Now Jesus loved Martha, and her sister, and Lazarus. When he heard therefore that he was sick, HE ABODE (stayed) TWO DAYS STILL IN THE SAME PLACE WHERE HE WAS. Then after that saith he to his disciples, Let us go into Judea again.

His disciples say unto him, Master, the Jews of late sought to stone thee; and goest thou hither again? ( why are you going back)  Jesus answered, Are there not twelve hours in a day? If any man walk in the day, he stumbleth not, because he seeth the light of this world. But if a man walk in the night, he stumbleth, because there is no light in him.

These things said he; and afterward he saith unto them, Our friend Lazarus sleepeth; But I go, that I may awake him out of sleep.

Then said his disciples, Lord, if he sleep, he shall do well. Howbeit Jesus spake of his death; but they thought he had spoken of taking rest in sleep.

Then said Jesus unto them, plainly, LAZARUS IS DEAD. And I am glad for your sakes that I was not there, TO THE INTENT THAT YOU MIGHT BELIEVE;……John 11:1-15  most know the rest of the story.. the sisters go on to tell Him, if He had only been there, their brother would still be alive.

We often think about our pain in what we go through, but it was NOT easy for Jesus to allow them to go through this sorrow and everyone is crying and now HE IS crying also, and I ALWAYS have to point this out because it just tells you WHO HE IS, He KNEW that in matter of moments Lazarus would be very much alive, it just broke His heart seeing them hurt, it does break His heart to see His children cry, NEVER doubt that.

“Jesus said, Take ye away the stone, Martha, the sister of him that was dead, saith unto him, Lord, by this time he stinketh; for HE HATH BEEN DEAD FOUR DAYS. Jesus saith unto her, Said I not unto thee, IF THOU WOULDEST BELIEVE, THOU SHOULDEST SEE THE GLORY OF GOD?” John 11:39,40

As we know from the verses, He LOVED them, but Lazarus was allowed to die so the GLORY would be revealed. But it was not the END of Lazarus’s  story and EVEN four days dead was still not too late!  Just as He said, it was that the GLORY OF GOD WOULD BE REVEALED AND THAT THEY WOULD BELEIVE!

It may look dead, doesn’t mean it is dead! May just not be as late as you think it is after all! So if you find yourself asking.. “Am I too late?”, have faith.. it all may just be right on time!

Φλογίζω Σαλπιζω NBJ 2016