An “A” for effort but nothing still equals zero .

“PAUL, CALLED to be an apostle of Jesus Christ through the WILL of God, and Sosthenes our brother.

Unto the church of God which is at Corinth, to them that are sanctified in Christ Jesus, CALLED to be saints with ALL that are in every place call upon the name of Jesus Christ, our Lord, both their’s and our’s. 

Grace be unto you, and peace from the God our Father, and from the Lord Jesus Christ.

I thank my God always on your behalf, for the grace of God which is given you by Jesus Christ; 

That in every thing ye are enriched by him, in all utterance (speaking) and in all knowledge; 

Even as the testimony of Christ was confirmed in you. 

So you come behind (fall short) in no gift; waiting for the coming (revelation) of our Lord Jesus Christ. 

Who should also confirm you unto the end, that ye may be blameless in the day of our Lord Jesus Christ.

God is faithful, by whom ye were CALLED into the fellowship of his Son Jesus Christ our Lord.  

Now I beseech you, brethren, by the name of our Lord Jesus Christ,that ye all speak the same, (have a uniform testimony), and that there be no divisions among you; but that ye be perfectly joined together in the same mind and in the same judgment. 

For it hath been declared unto me of you, my brethren, by them which are of the house of Chloe, that are contentions (quarrels) among you.

Now I this I say, that every one of you saith, I am of Paul; and of Apollos; and of Cephas; and I of Christ.

Is Christ divided? was Paul crucified for you? or were you baptized into the name of Paul?

I thank God that I baptized none of you, but Crispus, and Gaius;

Lest (unless) any should say that I had baptized in mine own name.

And I baptized also the household of Stephanas; besides (other than them), I know not whether I baptized any other. 

For Christ sent me NOT to baptize, but to preach the gospel, NOT with wisdom of words, lest the cross of Christ should be made of none effect (considered void and meaningless). 

For the preaching of the cross is to them that perish foolishness; but unto us which are saved it is the power of God.

For it is written, I WILL DESTROY THE WISDOM OF THE WISE, AND WILL BRING TO NOTHING THE UNDERSTANDING OF THE PRUDENT.

Where is the wise? where is the scribe? where is the disputer of this world? hath God not made foolish the wisdom of this world? 

For after the wisdom of God the world by wisdom KNEW NOT God, it pleased God by the foolishness of preaching  (the message preached) to SAVE them that believe.

For the Jews require a sign, and the Greeks seek after wisdom:

But we preach Jesus crucified, unto the Jews a stumblingblock, and unto the Greeks foolishness; 

BUT unto them that are CALLED, both Jews and Greeks, Christ the power of God, and the wisdom of God.  

Because the foolishness of God IS wiser than men; and the weakness of God IS stronger than men.

For ye see (consider) YOUR CALLING, brethren, how that NOT many wise men after the flesh, NOT many mighty, NOT many noble are called.” 1 Corinthians 1:1-26 

The main thought running through this passage is that we ARE called.

I love how Paul pointed out all the “in fighting”, all the contentions, and strife.

Like how so many of us in the “church” NOT one church but as a world-wide universal belief in Christ, have so many different thoughts and arguments about those beliefs… who “should be allowed” to serve what office, and what’s worse who’s “going to hell” or not for not conforming to “traditional” roles, or certain denominations beleifs, but he is teaching us that this is wrong and that we are to belive this… Jesus Christ, sinless son of God, born of a virgin, crucified, dead, and resurrected. Sharing THAT testimony and winning others to Christ through HIM being lifted up, NOT by our “wisdom” and ALL the other arguments are just that, arguments and that has no place and will never have a place in the Kingdom of God.

We are also being taught here to always bear in mind the fact that Jesus saves us, Jesus sanctified us, and He confirms, even keeping us in the confirmation that we are His, until the very end, until we are welcomed into our eternal reward.

But what do we do with this confirmation?

What do we do when we fail to share that testimony of just what the cross has meant to us?

What happens when God has healed us, rescued us, and delivered us and yet we don’t want to share that for fear of looking “foolish” to the world?

We become much like the ten lepers, whom after Jesus had healed ALL of them, only one returned to give God glory. 

When we choose to fear the world or we choose to just “sit” on our gift or calling and make no effort whatsoever to nurture those gifts or pursue that calling and when we fail to help others on the path that God has chosen for them, we are doing NOTHING. And when our “service” to the Lord only consists of what is convenient or comfortable to us and for us, again we are doing NOTHING.

And when church becomes a place we can go IF we need something from God or do not have anything “better to do”, then it the worst kind of NOTHING. When we just don’t feel like serving God, { NOT due to illness, but meaning attitude of being apathetic, just don’t have time, just don’t care} well, Jesus did NOT FEEL LIKE BEING TORTURED AND MURDERED, but He loved us enough to do it.

And ONCE we have known the Lord, we no longer belong to ourselves, we have been, as the Bible tells us, “bought with a price” and that price was Jesus’ life.

And then we turn and “live out” the verse in which the Lord tells us that we have “sold ourselves” for nothing. And by doing NOTHING we are selling ourselves, our salvation, AND those whom we were to minister to and those to whom the gift God had given us should have impacted.

God sent that preaching, that calling, that gift to those who do believe, we know the world will NOT receive it, it is not sent to them and he already told us they will find it foolish.

We can have that friendship with the world, even after God has us warned of this with these words from James 4:4:..“Know ye not (do you not know?) that the friendship of (with) the world IS enmity with God? whosoever therefore will (wants to be)be a friend with the world IS THE ENEMY OF GOD.”  

Again, the “world” meaning putting a higher value on those things of sin and worldly pleasure, and putting the thoughts, opinions of others at a higher value than those of God.

This is a huge problem today with the refusal to speak AGAINST pagan beliefs and sin for fear of offending others. If you know God to be God than you KNOW that He is also the ONLY truth and the ONLY way to salvation.

And the argument of “others having their own beliefs”, but when you know those beliefs are completely contrary to the word of God and say NOTHING you are letting that person be falsely lead and by saying NOTHING you are letting them have  a false sense of security in those false beliefs.

The FIRST ploy the serpent played on Eve was LETTING her BELIEVE that he was her friend and that he was telling the truth, when we LET other BELIVE that we WOULD tell them the truth concerning the way to salvation but we fail to do so, then we become as much a danger to their soul and eternal life as the devil himself.

And all due to our choice of choosing NOTHING.

That does not mean you can not speak to someone or be kind to people but when those friendships and FEAR of ridicule prevents you from sharing the cross and the testimony of God, then that friendship is now of a higher value than your own salvation.

So we all have that choice, DO THE WILL OF GOD, as we are told here:

James 1:22: “But be ye doers of the word, and not hearers only, deceiving your ownselves.” 

There is that deception again, it is very easy to deceive ourselves into choosing what we think or what we feel, but you know, when Jesus taught the disciples to pray the Lord’s prayer, a key to that prayer is ‘Thy will be DONE in earth,a s it is in heaven.” and that earth can also mean US, Adam was created from the dirt of the earth, and earth is this realm but WE are also that earth that must allow HIS will in us.

When all is said, and all is done, rewards given and totals tallied we can be assured of getting straight “A”‘s for effort and we can also be assured that no matter how it is calculated “zero” will always equal absolutely NOTHING.

I, for one want those “A”‘s! I changed the name a little and am trying a little something “different” as far as ministry goes, because I was challenged to the thought of what did I have? What could I do with whatever it is that God has allowed me to have to spread the Gospel of Christ, and fail or flop, if we give all we have and try our best, that is all he wants of us BUT we all have to try to we all need to start taking God and His word, His commands, His mercy, and His love and doing something with it.

Σαλπιζω Φλογιζω NBJ2018

Related: go-for-the-gold-but-please-hold-the-jade

To shun the Son

Prayer of David

“But Jonah rose up to flee unto Tarshish from the presence of the Lord, and went down to Joppa; and he found a ship going to Tarshish: so he paid the fare thereof, and went down into it, to go with them to Tarshish from the presence of the Lord.

But the Lord sent out a great wind into the sea, and there was a mighty tempest in the sea, and the ship was like (about) to be broken.

Then the mariners were afraid and cried every man unto his god, and cast forth wares that were in the ship into the sea, to lighten it of them, (threw everything possible overboard to lighten the ship).

But Jonah was gone down into the sides of the ship, and he lay, and was fast asleep.” Jonah 1-5

This is the final post in the series dealing with the thought of spirit versus flesh.

In “Magic” button we looked at Peter and the disciples, who succumbed to emotional exhaustion and  the sorrow caused by the dread of the uncertainty of what was about to take place.

And Paul, who definitely had a predisposition to violence was constantly imprisoned, and ridiculed and was quite honest about the struggles that he faced as he allowed the Lord to teach him the reactions God wanted him to display and he did, one of the many proofs of this came after he and Silas were miraculously freed when God sent an earthquake and opened ALL the prison doors.

Paul alerting the jailer to the fact that they were all still there just as the jailer was about to commit suicide because of their escape.

Paul’s unexpected display of love and mercy being one of the things God used to bring conviction on the jailer, saving him and his entire family.

And with “Kidron calling” we discussed the tear filled journey taken by many including David, whose comfort and complacency directly led him to the place of temptation which Bathsheba. 

David should have been in battle with his men, and his fall to that temptation gave way to what would send him and those faithful to him fleeing toward the wilderness.

And finally Jonah whose just simply allowed his flesh such control that he really believed that he could outrun God. 

Most know the story, when it became evident that he was the reason this storm had come upon them ALL and asked to be thrown overboard with which the storm ended for those on the ship but it still took a horrifying ordeal to convince Jonah that he would do as he had been told.

And still, Jonah held on to enough of his flesh that he actually got mad when God showed mercy to Nineveh and revoked his judgment after they had repented, Jonah was mad because he wanted them destroyed to fulfill his prophetic word.

He could have had his own insecurities as prophets are usually hated and ridiculed, maybe he thought if he sleep long enough and ran far enough someone else would do his job for him and God would somehow “forget” that he had given Jonah this job, and unfortunately,  there is still a lot of that going on today.

These stories have many common threads but one that is really prevalent is how all these examples affected other people, from the hurt and heartache Jesus suffered when his friends couldn’t even stay by his side and would go on to run and even deny him and being betrayed by one who knew him so well and had held such closeness with him that he knew exactly the spot that he could hand Jesus over to his enemies.

Of course, Jesus knew all this and still loved us enough to go on over that brook of CALLED.

And the story of David filled with weeping upon weeping as we all “take people with us”, whether we want to believe that or not, we do.

Our decisions, just like in Jonah’s story, can affect and endanger others, as he laid comfortably sleeping  while those on the ship were in fear of being absolutely destroyed. Jonah oblivious to what was going on around him, and as with the fare price, he did indeed pay a much higher price and STILL had to do his job.

That is what happens when we allow denial to convince us that everything is really just someone’s else’s problem that they’ll just have to deal with.

God has given us the Bible and all the stories of those before us to be examples to us of many things and often what to do and a greater blessing of what NOT to do and how NOT to handle our problems.

In starting this series I had that thought over and over in my own heart as I have been trying to deal with my own struggles after losing my Mom and I have found that to be true so many times, we all struggle with something at one point or another in life.

We can choose to be big fakes and try to hide those struggles and put on our “churchy christian” faces (yeah, someone actually called me that a few weeks back ;), I was thinking, “If you only knew”…, obviously they had no clue to the battle I was having just staying on the boat!) and we can chose to pretend that we are all together and fa-bu and all kinds of groovy.

But that is not real and God hates that, actually His word says this, and I have quoted this verse probably thousands of time during my time with the Lord and His word never fails:

James 4:7-10: “SUBMIT yourselves therefore TO God, Resist the devil, and he will flee from you.

Draw nigh (near) to God, and he will draw nigh unto you.

Cleanse your hands, ye sinners, and purify your hearts ye double minded. 

Be afflicted (lament), and mourn, and weep:

LET your laughter be turned to mourning, and your joy to heaviness (gloom). 

HUMBLE yourselves in the sight of the Lord, and he shall lift you up.”

So with all the troubles in life that can sometimes TRY to lull us back into those old comfortable places where we can just go to sleep hoping to wait out the trip of the dreaded, now uncertain future ahead, so afraid of tearfully crossing that brook ahead of us, that we can forget the promises, and the blessings, and the fulfillment of the callings that are just on the other side of that brook…if we will make that journey.

I want to end this on the note of David, this is the answer for us if we have struggled with these issues or even if someone wasn’t thrown from the boat, they had just temporarily “fallen off”!

That is one of the innumerable beauties of God, it’s not about falling off the boat, or having to be thrown from the boat, it is all about climbing back on board and trying your best to sit down, shut up and trust the Captain.

I love the boating terms, always will, and I have put this is past posts, but back in the day when our late Pastor, who had been a Navy man, would hit us with a particularly toe stepping message, he’d always end it with this, “Shape up or ship out!” and then he’d smile really big and finish with, “And these pews don’t have oars on them!”

Still pretty good advice, we can’t go backward there is nothing there except heartache and death, so we have to go forward, even if we are going without human companionship. 

Imagine the disciples once they were “on their own”, they really had to put their faith to the fire and as Jesus told none of us are above any of us and all of our work will be tried in that fire.

This is David’s prayer after he had been confronted by Nathan the prophet concerning his sins with Bathsheba and the “murder by war” of Uriah.

It is a wonderful prayer and even to be broken down and prayed by certain verse over our specific struggle, we can all find hope, help, and healing in the word of God.

                                                         Psalm 51

“HAVE mercy upon me, O God, according to thy lovingkindness; according to the multitude of thy tender mercies, blot out my transgressions.

Wash me thoroughly from mine iniquity, and cleanse me from my sin.

For I acknowledge my transgressions; and my sin is ever before me.

Against thee, thee only, have I sinned, and done this evil in thy sight; that thou mightest be justified when thou speaketh, and be clear when thou judgest.

Behold, I was shapen (brought forth) in iniquity; and in sin did my mother conceive me.

Behold, thou desirest truth in the inward parts; and in the hidden part thou shalt make me to know wisdom.

Purge me with hyssop, and I shall be clean: wash me, and I shall be whiter than snow.

Make me to hear joy and gladness; that the bones which thou hast broken may rejoice.

Hide thy face from my sins, and blot out all mine iniquities.

Create in me a clean heart, O God, and renew a right (steadfast) spirit within me.

Cast me not away from thy presence; and take not thy holy spirit from me.

Restore unto me the joy of thy salvation; and uphold me with thy free (generous) spirit. 

Then will I teach transgressors thy ways; and sinners shall be converted unto thee.

Deliver me from bloodguiltiness, O God, thou God of my salvation: and my tongue shall sing aloud of thy righteousness.

O Lord, open thou my lips; and my mouth shall shew forth thy praise.

For thou desirest not sacrifice; else I would give it: thou delightest not in burnt offering.

The sacrifices of God are a broken spirit: a broken and contrite (crushed) heart, O God, thou will not despise.

Do good in thy good pleasure unto Zion; build thou the walls of Jerusalem.

Then shalt thou be pleased with the sacrifices of righteousness, with burnt offering and whole burnt offering then shall they offer bullocks upon thine altar.”

Φλογιζω Σαλπιζω NBJ2018

 

“PREPARED” Part#2 oxygen to fire

And as the people were in expectation, and all men mused (questioned) in their hearts of John, whether he were the Christ, or not; John answered, saying unto them all, I INDEED BAPTIZE YOU WITH WATER;

BUT ONE MIGHTER THAN I COMETH, the latchet of whose shoes I am not worthy to unloose: HE SHALL BAPTIZE YOU WITH THE HOLY GHOST AND FIRE:

Whose fan(winnowing fan) is in his hand, and he will thoroughly purge his floor (threshing floor), and will gather the wheat into his garner (barn); but the chaff he will burn with fire unquenchable.” Luke 3:15-17  

I want to remind of you of a little of John’s own journey to the Kingdom, he had been filled with the Holy Ghost while still inside his mother’s womb, he had also spent his life up to the point of his ministry in preparation for that ministry and everything he did was unheard of in his time.

He was so different and taught so differently that those who heard him wondered who he could possibly be.

And also those of the enemy who HOPED that he was not who they were afraid he might be. (Now that was almost a tongue twister!)

We are told that the people were expecting, they were in that mind-set, no one knew exactly what to expect but they knew something major was on the horizon. 

Imagine what thoughts were going through their minds when John answered them that he was NOT even worthy to touch the shoes of the one that they should be expecting and imagine the confusion and fear they must have surely felt when he informed them that they would receive a holy baptisma baptism of the Holy Ghost and fire.

Do you think they understood any of this? Maybe some, the Lord certainly could have quickened hearts to that understanding, but most would have been a little fearful, at the very least by these statements.

The Holy Ghost is who takes us from death into life, it is God changing us by truly giving us HIS Spirit, that is why we should never get caught up in the “waiting until we can live it” deception that prevents so many from accepting Jesus.

We CAN’T change and we CAN’T live it, that is why He gives us His Spirit because he strengthens us from the inside out, so that we can overcome all those things that are impossible for humans, and thankfully, that includes overcoming death and hell, as HE OVERCAME THEM for us.

And it is as that water that the Spirit and bride are urging “whosoever will” to come, to take that water freely. We must have that, we must have the Spirit of God or we will not enter into his kingdom.

Romans 8:8-11:”So they that ARE in the flesh CAN NOT please God. But ye are NOT in the flesh, BUT in the SPIRIT, IF SO BE THATTHE SPIRIT OF GOD DWELLS (lives) IN YOU.

NOW IF ANY MAN HAVE NOT THE SPIRIT OF CHRIST, HE IS NONE OF HIS.

AND IF CHRIST BE IN YOU, THE BODY IS DEAD BECAUSE OF SIN; BUT THE SPIRIT IS LIFE BECAUSE OF RIGHTEOUSNESS.

BUT IF THE SPIRIT OF HIM THAT RAISED UP JESUS FROM THE DEAD DWELL IN YOU, HE THAT RAISED UP CHRIST FROM THE DEAD SHALL ALSO QUICKEN (give life to) YOUR MORTAL BODIES BY THE SPIRIT THAT DWELLTH IN YOU.”

It is as that “fan” John spoke of, that winnowing fan that IS used to blow the chaff away from the wheat, it frees the wheat from the dirt and useless particles that get stuck to it in the growing process (again, some serious symbolism in that also).

Now think about the day of Pentecost recorded in Acts 2:1-4: ” And the day of Pentecost was fully come, they were ALL with ONE ACCORD (purpose of mind)  IN ONE PLACE. AND SUDDENDLY THERE CAME A SOUND FROM HEAVEN AS OF A MIGHTY RUSHING WIND, AND IT FILLED ALL THE HOUSE WHERE THEY WERE SITTING. 

AND THERE APPEARED UNTO THEM CLOVEN (divided) TONGUES LIKE AS OF FIRE, AND IT SAT UPON EACH OF THEM. AND THEY WERE ALL FILLED WITH THE HOLY GHOST, AND BEGAN TO SPEAK WITH OTHER TONGUES (languages) AS THE SPIRIT GAVE THEM UTTERANCE.”

Once again we are seeing the need for that unity, but more for the point of this subject, we see that the Spirit came SUDDENLY and a sound as rushing wind and the fire sitting upon them, them being filled with His Holy Ghost and His fire.

As his blood washes us as we are forgiven for our sins, all these work as part of the process that cleans the “wheat “from all the things of the world and purifies us for the kingdom. 

Fire is usually associated with pain and destruction but with God, who IS a consuming fire, it is part of our hearts being purified, “as gold in a furnace” and as fire consumed the offerings that had been accepted. And think about the very life force that God breathed into us, perfect temperature but once that life is over we grow stone cold and we also need that spiritual fire in our souls to be fully “alive” in Him. 

All believers are given the Holy Spirit to lead them and guide them once they accept Christ but the Baptism of fire and the Holy Ghost in so essential and such a completely different experience, just as that experience was described in the Book of Acts.

ALL these WERE saved, but God endued them with this power, HIS power to bring forth those miracles and signs that birthed the early church. I do truly understand that the teachings that this was only for that period of time, but I promise you, that teaching is quite mistaken and we NEED a revival of the fire baptism and the Holy Ghost NOW more than we ever have in history.

HIS anointing is what will break those yokes of bondage and it is what allows believers to “live” out their faith, they have assurance, assurance that they have FELT that there truly is so much more than this world.

But I am sure it sounded scary for them when John preached it but as John was sent to prepare hearts of that time, and maybe it still sounds scary to those who have never surrendered to Him. But it is not painful but certainly can be felt, it is beautiful as God would never harm his children. 

I am sure all this and the apocalypse and earthy reign are all terrifying also to those we are being sent to this day. Never think it doesn’t scare me, something would be truly messed up if a person did not fear it but if you serve Christ, he doesn’t want you to be afraid, only READY. 

But refusing to tell them or to even acknowledge that all these events will and must come to pass is really not accomplishing anything.

And this is why Jesus warned us to pay close attention and not let these things come “upon us aware”

They are not getting saved, they are not being prepared, any ever question why so many repented under John?

Maybe because he actually DID preach things yet to come. We let so many things interfere with our responsibilities to Christ and to the kingdom.

So many mega churches packed with thousands and thousands of people and yet content NOT knowing whether or not these people have truly accepted Christ. Content that just by being there “it will sink in” and they will be saved, but what is it doesn’t just “sink in”.

What if they are taking for granted that since no one is saying otherwise they MUST be okay. Because if their souls was in danger, surely someone would say something, wouldn’t they? The Bible asks us a very good question, “HOW can they hear without a preacher?”

But our problem now is How can they repent if the preachers refuse to preach?

This REFUSAL to preach hell, brimstone, and repentance is what has brought us to the era of  “pagan palaces” that are calling themselves true churches of God and allowing absolute abominations to God in condoning, allowing, and outright celebrating practices that are anything but Godly.

We always want “the other guy” to say something, do something, stand for something and in the end NO ONE IS STANDING FOR ANYTHING. 

So with the LAST commission of the Gospel the Bible gives, we are ALL being told EXACTLY what we are to do.

Because just as he sent those before to lessen that fear and encourage them and warn them to salvation, as the bride of Christ we also are sent with a very clear message.

Let’s review it one more time, Revelation 22:17: “The Spirit AND the bride, say, COME. And LET him THAT HEARETH, say, COME. And LET him that is athirst (seeking), COME. And WHOSOEVER will LET him TAKE OF THE WATER OF LIFE FREELY.”

As far back as the fall of Adam, God has said “COME”, the Bible even says of Jesus, “the Lamb who was slain before  the foundations of the world”  deliverance and salvation are a constant thread through the Old Testament, in preparing the world for that reconciliation back to God in its truest sense.

Jesus encouraged ALL to come to him, The comforter was sent, so we KNOW the Spirit wants people saved. As the body of Christ, the bride of Christ, we had better want people saved.

Our voice individually and as a collective church body the world over, should be in unison with the Spirit, in our prayers and in beckoning COME. Notice also, it is not just one denomination, or group, or nationality.

To the best of my ability and understanding, in the Book of Revelation chapters two and three combined, seven times  in his message to the seven churches, Jesus tells us this, He that hath an ear, let him hear what the Spirit saith unto the churches.

This explains why often we hear a message and then hear a similar message somewhere else or on television, because we are ALL one church and it is ONE Spirit over us.

So with our verse, the Spirit is the first voice and joined with the bride have both given the invitation.

The second  group is those who have heard what the Spirit has said and they are also to “send out that wedding invitation” to tell them simply, COME. 

The third group is those who are seeking, maybe they have been “on the fence off the fence”, unsure as to what they really believe, but thirsty, desiring something that will give them refreshing relief, they are told to COME. Meaning seek no more, come will you may.

And the fourth group is a net that spans all of the earth, WHOSOEVER will, rich, poor, young, old, former pagan cult member, former atheist, WHOSOEVER

Anyone! Anyone who has chosen to believe and accept Christ and the water of life FREELY as the wedding bells begin to toll.

It is salvation, free and clear, point-blank. 

Next time, Lord will, part #3, we’ll look a little closer at that water, we’ll discuss the behavior expected form those invited and most importantly the wardrobe the King has  provided and commanded the guests to wear!

For complete series: Prepared Part #1 Preparing for the wedding of a King

Prepared Part #3 Would be wedding crashers washed inside out

Φλογίζω Σαλπίζω NB 2018 

 

“Feelin’ out the familiar footing”

Now this is something you probably do not hear everyday…or really any day, but I seriously got stuck to a board!

To explain this, first let me explain that for several months my family has had an issue with the DOT of our state and as you know this stands for Department of Transportation, but trust me in this case it has stood for Department of Tyranny, and that is a story that will probably become several future posts about what I have learned from all of it.

But for now I want to share a truly bizarre story and the spiritual thought I derived from it.

Around two months ago I was outside praying in certain areas because of the onset of what can only be referred to as state demanded carnage of private property for nothing more that a nice fat paycheck to those who are issued grant money for supposed “improvements” but again, we’ll get into that a little in the future.

But anyway, God taught me long ago that your answer is ALWAYS there when you are praying once he shows you how to read what you are seeing. So my husband and I were wandering around and I was praying about the whole heart breaking situation and I had been paying really close attention to everywhere I stepped because of the obvious dangers left in what could only be called an earthen war-zone, complete with an unmarked and completely unsecured twenty feet drop off  with NO containment whatsoever. 

So I want to stress, I KNEW to be careful and I THOUGHT I was BEING careful… that is until as I made my way to a little tree that has been home to a bird house for more years than I can remember, a place I had walked to hundreds and hundreds of times and suddenly I felt a familiar, but dreaded piercing in my left foot.

It took my brain but a second to register the fact that I had just managed to somehow step on a nail, so I quickly shifted ALL my weight to my right foot… only to drive a SECOND nail even deeper into that foot.

And at the point I literally just jumped completely out of both shoes (they were the slide on sneaker type) and I look and here are BOTH of my shoes actually stuck perfectly side by side to this board!

It was actually a piece of partial board and why on earth it had been laid there with nails driven through it is beyond me! Evidently someone had been doing some repairs and ripped it off and set it aside and completely forgot to move it.

So here is my husband who is as blown away by what just happened as I was and he is holding up this board and literally has to PULL my shoes free from the board and help get them back on me.

Of course he moved the board so no one else would step on it. The thing with this was the familiarity of that spot, a place, like I said, I have been and been, so much so that I DID NOT EVEN BOTHER LOOKING FOR DANGER and there is some symbolism in that.

Needless to say, this was very painful, the second much worse because I was trying to “get away” from the nail sticking into the first foot and by putting all my weight down on the second nail that I did not know was there, it went even deeper and STILL has not healed completely.

But I finished what I set out to do, painful or not, got home, soaked both feet in Epsom salts and applied antibiotic cream and band aids and the truly AMAZING aspect to this story is this, I fully expected to get up the next morning and have to hobble and hop for a week and to my absolute amazement, my feet were NOT even sore.

I know that is hard to believe but honestly had it not been for changing the band aids out each day I would have not known I had ever hurt them. And I KNOW that was GOD!

It had to be God, no other explanation, it hurt and it hurt bad just trying to walk back home after I did and I threw my shoes away because the nail hole and blood in the worse of the two made me quite sure I did not want to wear them ever again!

And I really chalked it up to an attack waged that God intervened in. But I could not get past the fact of how “familiar” that little bird house spot was to me.

Had it been any other place I would have done exactly as I had been during the rest of my walk, I would have LOOKED, I would have WATCHED, and I would have been CAREFUL before I took that first step and assuredly CAREFUL before I took the second!

And as I pondered it, I could truly see so many similarities between my physical pain caused by familiarity and some of the spiritual pain we all suffer sometimes because of  spiritual and emotional familiarity.

#1.We are often trapped, snare, or wounded in the areas that are our comfort zones and we fail to consider that those are perfect areas for the enemy to hide those nails he wants us to become impaled to because he knows we will be so comfortable walking through those places that we will not even bothering to think of the hidden dangers that may await us.

#2. Once we are shocked by that unforeseen piercing we have just  endured, such as when a friend betrays you or a companion suddenly parts ways with you, or unexpectedly terminated from a job that you had counted on for future security, so many things can surprise us in those places, causing us to misjudge, act too quickly, and often in attempt to lessen that initial pain, we will fall to a second snare causing us even greater hurt and damage.

#3. Becoming STUCK, sometimes those snares, traps, and double whammies can leave us simply UNABLE to move, spiritual becoming STUCK in our despair and unable to free ourselves and losing our “shoes” that we need to complete the journey.

#4. It IS those times in life that we MUST stand still, right where we are and it is in THOSE times that the Lord in His mercy and goodness, and grace pulls us free and shods our feet once AGAIN as we go on to minister, preach, witness, testify, and sets us afresh on that path that He has blessed and He heals us as He sends our “feet” forth for His kingdom.

#5. Lastly, snares, traps, and pitfalls will come, whether strategically placed in your way by the enemy tp prevent something he does not want you to accomplish or if it is just simply due to our own lack of observation but one thing is for sure, Jesus will NEVER leave us and He will ALWAYS rescue us and He will NEVER leave us stuck dead in the road on our road for Him!

Psalm 138: ” I WILL praise thee with my whole heart: before the gods will I sing praise unto thee.

WILL worship toward thy holy temple, and praise thy name for thy lovingkindness and for thy truthfor thy hast magnified THY WORD above all thy name. In the day when I cried thou answeredst me, and strenghthenedst me with strength in my soul. 

All the kings of the earth shall praise thee, O Lord, when they hear the words of my mouth. Yea, they shall sing in the ways of the Lord: for great is the glory of the Lord.

Though the Lord be high, yet hath he respect (regard) unto the lowly: but the proud he knoweth afar off.

THOUGH I WALK IN THE MIDST OF TROUBLE, THOU WILT (will) REVIVE ME:

THOU SHALT STRETCH FORTH THINE HAND AGAINST THE WRATH OF MINE ENEMIES AND THY RIGHT HAND SHALL SAVE ME.

The Lord WILL perfect (complete) that which concerneth me: THY MERCY, O LORD, ENDURETH FOR EVER: forsake not the works of thine own hands.

So if you happen to step on a nail any time soon. just remember it could always be worse,  you could have  stepped on two! 🙂

Thanks for reading, Love and peace till next time!

Φλογίζω Σαλπιζω Εξυπνιζω

LOVE this song!

 

 

O Jerusalem 2 “Pots calling….”

“How art thou fallen from heaven, O Lucifer, son of the Morning! how art thou cut down to the ground, which didst WEAKEN THE NATIONS

For thou hast said in thine heart, I WILL ASCEND INTO HEAVEN, I WILL EXALT MY THRONE ABOVE THE STARS OF GOD:

I WILL ALSO SIT UPON THE MOUNT OF THE CONGREGATION in the sides of the north:

I WILL ASCEND ABOVE THE HEIGHTS OF THE CLOUDS; I WILL BE LIKE THE MOST HIGH.” Isaiah 14:12-14 

You know, it is such a hoot when the UN keeps accusing Israel of being the worst human rights violator in the known universe. I was having my morning coffee, listening to international news on the radio and one story was about a survivor of last years Rohingya atrocities. 

Which had included beatings, gang rapes, village burning, and of course mass executions with people thrown in graves with acid to literally “burn the faces off the bodies” all of this PROVEN by a sim card from a survivors cell phone that he had smuggled wrapped in plastic and taped to his leg, when he fled from the horror.

If you need a glimpse of the true extent of these crimes and their true prevalence in the world, just check out some RELIABLE sources on the subject, Reuters has a site dedicated only to human rights violations and awareness.

So pardon me, while viewing the world as largely polluted and corrupted, perverse, and repulsive due to the proverbial stench of human trafficking, slave labor, oppressed women and enslaved children, chained and neglected, and never forget “laboratory” animals,and as I have said a million times, the list goes ON and ON…. so again, pardon me, if I find the accusations against Israel by the UN, in the NEXT news story I heard, just a trifle  BIASED, to say the very least.

Actually my first thought was to roll around on the floor and laugh hysterically at the mere fact that two stories back to back, one of brutality beyond brutality and another of a country refusing settlements on their OWN GOD-GIVEN land and yet they were DEEMED the greater of the evil.

Kinda like… “Hello, Pots, are you seriously calling those kettles black?”

Also VERY reminiscent of the conversation between the Lord and Jeremiah.

 Jeremiah 1:13 ” And the word of the Lord came unto me the second time, saying, What seest thou? And I said, I see a seething (boiling) pot; and the face of it is toward the north.” 

And we certainly have one set on the stove right now. And man, it is just about to boil completely over.

So back to WHY, and I really want to take this opportunity to ask a question to anyone who made be reading this with skepticism and debate as to the REALITY of the fulfillment of Bible prophecy.

If you question any of this, I want to challenge you, DO YOUR OWN RESEARCH and ASK yourself a couple of questions.

Number one being WHY, WHY would the majority of the world’s countries be so vehemently AGAINST the TINY nation of Israel?

WHY would one people be so hated, so persecuted THROUGHOUT HISTORY?

WHY the accusations that THE well documented facts of the Holocaust NEVER EVEN TOOK PLACE?

WHY have leaders been even KNOWN to echo the VERY words of the Bible, with the statement that they wanted Israel WIPED FROM THE FACE OF THE EARTH?

WHY? WHY has there ALWAYS been such turmoil and hatred aimed at one TINY little country?

Well, our answer is found in the above verses. Satan’s LAST attempt at an IMPOSSIBLE overthrow.

Revelation 12:7: ” And there was war IN heaven: Michael and his angels FOUGHT AGAINST the dragon (one of Lucifer’s many names), and the dragon fought and his angels, And PREVAILED NOT; NEITHER WAS THEIR PLACE (dwelling) found any more in heaven.

And the great dragon WAS CAST OUT, that old serpent, CALLED the Devil, and Satan, WHICH DECEIVED THE WHOLE WORLD: HE WAS CAST OUT INTO THE EARTH, and HIS ANGELS WERE CAST OUT WITH HIM.”

The reference to HIS angels, his demons that are STILL very active, are the third of the angels of heaven who chose to rebel against God, thus becoming demons on earth.

The Bible gives us many pictures of his attempted overthrow, he was very beautiful and was a protecting angel, one of the three arch angels, he was also the angelic worship leader, which his instruments actually CREATED inside his body. 

But this great beauty brought him a great fall, he became filled with pride and self-will and no longer wished to serve and honor the very God who CREATED him, but in his arrogant pride felt that he should be worshiped above his own master. 

As his MANY names listed above, he is The prince of the kingdoms of Persia, The Pharaoh, The Assyrian, The great cedar,(Daniel 10:3) (Ezekiel 28:12-19) (Ezekiel 31:3-18) and of course, Isaiah chapter 14,  The bright star (angelic being) whom Jesus beheld him as lightning from their presence in heaven, as he was cast to earth  (Luke 10:18) during that great war.

And as he is  referenced so many ways in the Bible, you can see also the mirroring of his image in so many in THIS world, just as Jesus so often told those of his day, that they could not “hear” him because they WERE of THEIR father, the devil.

So as he was thrown from heaven he sought to control this earth and as Jesus referred to him as the “prince of THIS world” when the time came for his arrest, death, and sacrifice to establish absolute power over the devil, death, and hell.

Paul referred to him as the “god of THIS world” (2 Corinthians 4:4) as he spoke to those in the world who are spiritually blind and reject God’s truth because they have believed the lies of the devil. 

And I do want to stress that he is NOT a prince nor is he a “god” but those who refuse and reject the truth are actually accepting him as such.

People often want to argue the point of his power BUT the truth is he is still a very powerful being, he WILL NEVER have the power of God! 

But a human should never mistake him for an adversary that they can defeat, through their own strength (such as so-called “ghost busters” and paranormal researchers, and any wannabe exorcism specialists, such as those told of in Acts 19:13-16) ONLY THE TRUE God, The God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob, The I AM THAT I AM, Jehovah God, Jesus Christ, the Holy Ghost, have that power!

And we ONLY have power over the enemy and the works of darkness BECAUSE God dwells in us and HIS power works within us and our lives.

And if you see that differently, you can complain to me in person and I will give you scripture to prove this.

But the BIBLE warns us to “BE ON GUARD”, “BE DILIGENT” “BE SOBER” because OUR adversary walks about SEEKING whom he may devour” that is telling us to watch out for him and his snares.

And to argue otherwise is like saying to someone, “Hey, be careful when you leave your house because a wanted serial killer was spotted.” WITHOUT giving them a DESCRIPTION of that person and TELLING them the area that they should avoid.

It would be useless information to them.

Same deal.

So I said all that to get to this… He TRIED to overthrow the throne IN heaven.

He TRIED to make all the angels worship him.

He then TRIED to establish his kingdom on earth but Jesus overruled that plan with His resurrection.

The last place that he has in his ATTEMPT at his IMPOSSIBLE overthrow IS Jerusalem. Because God has CHOSEN Jerusalem as His special place (read part one to help understand this O Jerusalem….. “ROUND ABOUT” and NEW JERUSALEM will be the crowning jewel of FUTURE earthly reign of Jesus Christ. I hope to get into that, Lord’s will, when part 3 comes around.

But until then LOOK at this for what it is… as God said in the scriptures above, the enemy has “weakened the NATIONS” the latest accusations against Israel (they are but a drop in the bucket) are all leading the nations to that great and faithful day.

And we need to be aware of what is “cooking on the stove” and be especially AWARE of who is truly stirring that pot.

Φλογιζω Σαλπιζω ΝΒ 2018

 

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

“Pilot Light”

“And thou shalt command the children of Israel, that they bring thee pure oil olive beaten for the light, to cause the lamp to burn always.” Exodus 27:20 Now we know that was for the temple.

But 1 Corinthians 3:16 asks us this: “Know ye NOT that ye ARE the temple of God? and that the Spirit of God dwelleth in you? 

What about our lights and the light that burns in us? The light that is to shine into a world of darkness a fire burning for and on behalf of God?

The oil for that lamp, HOLY, Holy oil that WE CAN NOT PRODUCE OURSELVES. Oil given from the Holy Spirit as we spend time in prayer and worship.

It has to be a ready supply, CONSTANTLY being poured into us and we are not allowing that to happen, our lamps contain only the oil from the last “deposit” and over time it will start to “evaporate” and little by little, the level starts going lower and lowering and you don’t even realize that you are almost “running on empty” as far as fuel goes.

And once you realize you need it and it is not quite there, there may not be time to get a fill up, Take Matthew 25:1-13 for a great example:

“Then shall the kingdom of heaven be likened unto ten virgins, which took their lamps, and went forth to meet the bridegroom.

And five of them were wise, and five were foolish. The five that were foolish took their lamps, and took no oil with them; 

 But the wise took oil in their vessels with their lamps. 

While the bridegroom tarried, they all slumbered and slept. And at midnight, there was a cry made, Behold, the bridegroom cometh; go ye out to meet him.

Then all the virgins arose, and trimmed their lamps. 

And the foolish said unto the wise, Give us of your oil; for our lamps are gone out.

But the wise answered, saying, Not so; lest there be not enough for us and you:  but go ye rather to them that sell, and buy for yourselves.

And while they went out to buy the bridegroom came; and they that were ready went in with him to the marriage; and the door was shut.

Afterward came also the other virgins, saying, Lord, Lord, open to us. But he answered and said, Verily I say unto you, I know you not.

Watch therefore, for ye know not the day nor the hour wherein the Son of man cometh.

Notice that the five foolish did indeed have their lamps, they just didn’t bother worrying about the oil. Next time, next week, maybe tomorrow, maybe tomorrow may never come.

The five wise took oil in their vessels, lamps, bodies, oil inside US. It is ironic, of course NOTHING really is, but after these verses Jesus gets into His teaching on the talents and the hidden talents and the talent being taken from the one who hid it and given to the one who already had ten. 

The overtaking of complacency has been on my heart so strong lately and it is truly a major problem for the body of Christ currently and we do have to take into consideration the great “falling away” but this is a horse of a different color.

If we all know there IS a great falling away and that the “saints are being worn out” by the enemy, why would this be a good time for anyone to rest?

We NEED and SHOULD BE doing double duty, working harder and harder for the kingdom, trying to win souls and trying to minister and feed the ones that God has sent us. 

I have said this before, but I am saying it again, is it any shock that Jesus told us in Luke 10:2:..“The harvest truly is great, but the labourers are few: pray ye therefore the Lord of the harvest, that he would send forth labourers into his harvest.”

Jesus TOLD us we have a great harvest but it is not going to gather itself! We have to be the light and we have to have the oil and we have to OVERCOME complacency.

If we approach our walk with Christ and our Christianity in everyday as nothing more than a doldrums, take it or leave it “lifestyle” we are going to soon find the pilot light will go out.

Jesus deserves SO MUCH MORE.

Lukewarm or even barely warmed over christianity is an absolute insult to Him and every single thing He has done for us.

And NOTHING will snuff that light out faster than complacency.

Complacency is described by the dictionary as a “smug, uncritical view of one’s accomplishments” when even doing nothing still feels quite right and one synonym of it is STAGNANT, not moving, not going forward, just staying in one place.

With our next scriptures, please note that it refers to women, but this could be men, women, whoever falls into this category and it should be a wake up call for us all.

The beginning of Isaiah chapter 32 deals with the evils taking over and all the damage that is being done (sound like our world?) then verses 9-17, says it all, here IS our problem and IF we want things changed, our answer follows:

RISE UP,ye women, that are at ease, HEAR MY VOICE, ye careless (COMPLACENT) daughters; give ear to my speech.

Many days and years shall ye be troubled, ye careless (COMPLACENT) women; for the vintage shall fail, the gathering shall NOT come.

TREMBLE, ye women that are at ease; be troubled, ye careless (COMPLACENT) ONES; strip up, and make you bare, {RID yourself of whatever is holding you down} and gird sackcloth upon your lions {REPENT}.

They shall lament (mourn) for the teats, for the pleasant fields, for the fruitful vine.

Upon the land of my people shall come up thorns and briers; yea, upon all houses of joy in the joyous city: Because the palaces shall be forsaken; the multitude of the city shall be left; the forts, and towers shall be dens for ever, a joy to wild asses, a pasture of flocks; 

UNTIL the spirit be poured upon us from on high, and the wilderness be  a fruitful field, and the fruitful field counted for a forest.

THEN judgment shall dwell in the wilderness, and righteousness REMAIN in the fruitful field.

AND THE WORK OF RIGHTEOUSNESS SHALL BE PEACE, and THE EFFECT OF RIGHTEOUSNESS QUIETNESS AND ASSURANCE FOR EVER.

He said it THREE TIMES,  so this tells us what a huge problem this is, and has been, we must overcome complacency WHILE we still can. 

1 Samuel 2, around verse 22, gets into the story of Eli, and Eli just absolutely let his sons (these men were supposed to be priests) run wild in the unholy things they did in the temple, even sleeping with prostitutes that were actually gathering outside, which is horrifying in itself,  and he just pretty much told them it was wrong, but did NOTHING to stop it.

So the judgment of God came down on him and his sons all died and even, and even the grandson whom was named “Ichabod” which means “inglorious” the mother said because the “Glory of the Lord had departed…’ (1 Samuel chapter 4) because of the transgression against the house of the Lord.

But here is the forerunner 1 Samuel 3:2,3 (a) ” And it came to pass that at that at that time Eli was laid down in his place, and his eyes begin to wax (grow) dim, that he could not see; and ERE (IN TIME) THE LAMP OF THE GOD WENT OUT IN THE TEMPLE…” 

This was an EXTREME example but it serves as a very sobering, terrifying reminder to us all to remember that those virgins represent US, God’s children, and any of us can become discouraged and complacent, but we can’t stay there! 

We all have a “pilot light’ that must be lit and kept lit and we have to keep check on that fuel and it seem that light starting to grow low, we have to make sure we get back up to full flame because nothing is worth letting that light go out.

And if you see a brother or sister growing “dark” encourage them, pray with them and help them get that spark back and as the verses from Isaiah proved out We will all be thankful for their new ignition!

Love, Peace, & have  a blessed week! Keep that fire burning!

Σαλπιζω NBJ 2017