Cross- carrying and burdens- bearing

share burdens‘Brothers, if someone is caught in a sin, you who are spiritual should restore him gently. But watch yourselves, or you also may be tempted. Carry each other’s burdens and in this way you fulfill the law of Christ. If anyone thinks he is something, when he is nothing, he deceives himself. ..Each one should carry his own load’ (Gal 6:1-5)

Ministry is not easy. If a brother backslides, it is the responsibility of the mature believers to confront him, to bring him to the Cross and to help him come back to his senses. Pride is the main reason why believers deceive themselves and others and fall into sin.
Each child of God has to obey the command of Jesus: ‘deny yourself, carry your cross and follow Me’. This command is personal. No one can deny his flesh for another. No one can carry the cross of another. No one else can follow Christ on your own path and your own destiny. This is your personal responsibility. It is what God expects from you directly. You cannot delegate your cross-carrying to another.
But there are times when a brother falls into sin. That is an emergency. A spiritual mature believer can stretch his hand of compassion and help him out of the fire. Please be careful! Deliverance is a dangerous process! In the medical field, any surgery has a potential to kill the patient while trying to save his life. Pride is like leprosy that appears on successful ministry, in particular in the deliverance ministry. It is so easy ‘to feel good’ in the presence of needy brethren, all desiring your ‘anointed prayers’. Be watchful at the possibility of pride entering the heart, hand in hand with the success of ministry.
God placed restrictions so that the flesh will not ‘enjoy’ ministry while doing ministry. My enjoyment should be God alone! For example, the fragrance of incense was not to be enjoyed by any man, not even by the priest who offers it. It was to be for God’s nostrils alone. Enjoyment of the fragrance of worship was taken to be the same as sharing in God’s glory. That priest will lose his life for manipulating the worship of God for his own selfish desires (Ex 30:36-38).

As a brother is overtaken or caught in a sin, he needs to be attended to. The word ‘overtaken’ refers to the sin of being impatient, undisciplined or presumptuous. Literarily it means to be in a hurry to eat the food, long before all the family gathers at the table. This sin of impatience has brought many down. That is the place when the devil will add more burdens than he can carry. These are weights that pin him down, unnecessary anxieties and troubles. The backslider cannot restore himself and God will not do it directly. He will delegate this delicate work to ‘a spiritual brother’ who comes to pray, with strength, discernment and compassion. With the help of the Holy Spirit he will be able to dis- entangle the fallen soldier and restore to him his dignity. Jesus died to save your soul. But when it comes to the restoration of the prodigals, Jesus desires the cooperation of His servants. Great reward awaits those who are able and willing to enter the territory of the enemy and to rescue their fallen colleagues.
There is still another danger! Once the believer is back on his feet, he may wish to remain dependent on ‘the good Samaritan’ and to take his love and help for granted. It is the influence of the evil spirit of religion that makes people lazy and irresponsible. The Pharisees placed heavy weights on others and did not want to help at all (Mt 23:4). Gently but firmly, you must remind the former patient that he has been discharged from the Spirit -Hospital and from now on he is well enough to be responsible for his own burden and call in ministry. Do not over-help anybody! Learn how to say ‘No!’

‘Dear Lord Jesus, help me to know the difference between Your burden and the devil’s wicked bondages. Help me to cooperate with You and rescue souls fallen by the way side. Circumcise my heart in such a way that I will be dead to any seduction of the enemy. I am willing to pay the price for a higher level of faith. I am willing to take more risks for Your name to be lifted higher in this city. Help me to love like You love! Help me to pray like You pray! All for Your glory alone! In Jesus name I pray, amen!’

Imitate the faithful and the patient!

‘Imitate those who thru faith and patience inherit what has been promised’ (Heb 6:12).

Imitate the humble, faithful, good and holy man (or woman) of God, who denies his flesh, carry his cross daily and follows Jesus! Imitate him who proves his walk by his spiritual fruits that none can deny!
Do not imitate the religious fake, the loud, the wayward, the proud, the worldly, the spiritual barren men (or women)! Stop! Draw back from them, repent and readjust to the truth of the Gospel!
Proud people always ignore the God ‘factor’. They do not believe that God is interested to help the helpless who ‘day and night’ pray for mercy and grace at His Throne. Please see the danger of doubt coming from the spirit of religion thru false believers who infiltrate church. This evil spirit will tell you that you are wasting your time by praying; that you do not need to pay the price to seek and find Jesus, the Author and Finisher of true faith in God; that you are too insignificant to the God of the Universe and that He does not know you; that you should abandon the holy place of prayer and do something more ‘practical’ than that.
God judges the proud by refusing to justify them, to give them peace or to answer their prayers. God is the Rock of defense and the Avenger of them that put their trust in Him.
Woman, you who pray for the salvation of your husband or children… You barren woman who pray to receive the fruit of the womb… You single woman who desires the gift of marriage… You who are sick in the body and mind, persecuted and lonely… You who pray for finances to use them according to the will of God…CONTINUE TO PRAY AND HAVE FAITH IN GOD!!! No man that continues to pray shall ever regret the time spent on his knees!
Prayer is God’s invention! God is never too early and never too late. He has heard your cries and has seen your tears. He will surely come and rescue you from this heavy burden that no man can carry. He will come to give you the testimony of victory and of a changed life! O…the blessing of a new beginning! To the glory and honor of the name of Jesus Christ!

The weapon of prayer

woman prayingIn this parable Jesus introduces us to a woman who is in great need (Lk 18:1-8). Let’s identify with her and we shall only gain. The first thing we are told about her is that she is a widow. She has no human helper. The trust in man is cursed by God. There are people that say that they do not trust anybody but they trust themselves. That will end in disappointment and failure…. The result of this misplaced trust is a spiritually blindness and bareness, a lonely, isolated soul. Repent and turn your heart towards God. Have faith in God alone and you will never be put to shame. God will position you in a ‘watered’ place where you will be fruitful and a blessing to many. The result of this blessed life is that you will be free from any fears the natural man experiences. This holy assurance is a sign that your faith is in God alone (Jer 17:5-8).
Let’s go back to our ‘sister’, the widow. She is poor, lonely and troubled. She has an enemy who knows she is vulnerable and weak, takes advantage of that and persecutes her continuously. She is the picture of the true believer. The attacks from the devil are strong and unfair. For a long time she can only cry for ‘justice from the adversary’. She does not take the matter into her own hands, but goes to the official judge who alone has the authority to help. Her situation is made difficult by the fact that the judge is a hard person, with no respect for God or man.
She wisely recognizes the fact that all authority comes from God (Rom 13:1-5). It does not matter if the official, the leader is a kind person or not. It does not matter if he is willing to attend to her case or not. She is too poor to bribe him; her poverty is strength because she has nothing to lose and no fear from ‘the big man’. She is humble and she knows that God is in charge of all situations on earth and He will answer them that have faith and cry to Him ‘day and night’. This is a stumbling block to rebellious and proud people. They do not acknowledge the sovereignty of God who delegates His authority to whom He wants, to saints or sinners alike (Dan 5:21). It is God that has the last say in all human affairs. You should know that it does not matter if the leader, the boss or the judge is good or bad to you. God is in charge! I am a believer and God is on my case! If God says ‘yes’ no man can say ‘no’! This ‘little’ secret is the foundation of successful Christian life! God is in charge of His creation and God answers the prayers of His people! The Almighty God is your Father! That is all you need to know! Amen!
Please note: this woman does not seek vengeance but JUSTICE!!! Also observe that this woman has only one option to escape the torment of the enemy: the weapon of prayer. It may not look like much, but prayer is the greatest power given to man.
‘Dear Lord Jesus, by the power of Your Spirit, help me to be strong in my inner man, confident of Your presence and sure victory! Wake me, Lord!!! Do whatever it takes to wake me from this slumber or doubt! Help me to be alert and ‘to pray in the Spirit on ALL occasions with ALL kinds of prayers and requests’ (Eph 6:18). I vow to Give You alone ALL the Glory, for the improvment of my prayer life and for the sure reward, In Jesus name I pray, amen!’

The danger of giving up the ministry of prayer

‘Then Jesus told His disciples a parable to show them that they should always pray and not give up…there was a widow in that town who kept coming to him with the plea: ‘Grant me justice against my adversary’…will not God bring about justice for His chosen ones who cry out to Him day and night? Will He keep putting them off? I tell you, He will see that they get justice and quickly. However, when the Son of Man comes, will He find faith on the earth?’ (Lk 18:1-8)

Some prayers are answered immediately. Some are answered after a long time. As a general rule, we have a tendency to think that God is too slow in responding to our requests. It takes spiritual maturity to trust God without complaining for the timing and the modality of answer to our prayer. The cross has done its deep work and the heart has been circumcised by Christ for the man to remain joyful and grateful under the burden of yet unanswered prayers. The danger is that we get impatient, restless, lazy or passive spiritually; become deceived about the value of prayer and decide to stop it. This is called spiritual ‘fainting’, a major hindrance to a successful prayer life. Once you chose to give up prayer, what is left is just wishful thinking that things may change one day. You lose the active faith to push forward and expect an answer to your request made long ago.

Let’s look at the word ‘to give up’. What does it mean? In Greek the word means to fail, to faint in the heart, to become weak and wicked, to harm yourself and others thru doubt and rebellion. The same word is defined to abandon an action because of despair of success. The man becomes a coward; he fails and betrays his destiny when he estimates that the miracle has become impossible even for God to perform. For example, he chooses to believe that the sickness is incurable and God is not available or able to heal his body. He accepts and declares defeat without waiting for the final hour when God judges and rewards according to each man’s work. This spiritual fainting is worldly sorrow and a symbol of death. By choosing to stop prayer, a man abandons the desire to see a miraculous change in his circumstances and he aborts his dream. The choice to stop prayer is the silent but sure signal of backsliding. Selah!
We see that ‘to give up’ means to surrender to failure, to discontinue a good work or to resign. It is a matter of control. Like the man who commits suicide just to prove that he is in charge of his life. Spiritually speaking it means to deliberate chose to allow the enemy to take over your position of standing before the throne. You surrender your blessing of communion with God to another with no possibility of resuming it in the future. What a tragedy to stop the prayer of faith! What great loss!
The opposite is to hold on, to abide, to dwell in the same place of waiting without interruptions. In other words, pray until something happens (‘PUSH’). It is a great dishonor to God to give up prayer because of circumstances that look contrary to the expected miracle. This is a great revelation! The devil does not care if we start a prayer request; he does not care if we join the line of waiting before the throne. But later he comes to persuade that we have waited too long and he offers himself to stand in our place. Satan is a thief and a fake ‘intercessor’. He desires to take over your place of blessings!
Be careful! The pressure from the enemy will increase as you get closer to the moment when the prayer will be manifested in the natural realm. Then pray like the widow: ‘Lord – grant me justice against my adversary!’ Pray for the justice of your cause as you continue to give glory to God! Jesus is giving us a warning here not to be fools. Do not abandon the place of waiting which will eventually become the place of testimony, blessing and miracles!
‘Dear Lord Jesus, please strengthen me today, by Your Spirit, to continue to pray, until I see results or I see Your face…Amen!’

Who touched Me? (Mk 5)

The woman with the issue of blood…twelve years of torment and suffering…isolation, shame and sorrow…No going out, no friends, no husband, no children, no fellowship in the House of God….just this slow poison death that never dies…she has spent all her valuables on the doctors…Dr. Religion failed; Dr. Mammon failed; Dr. Legalism failed; Dr. Self failed; Dr. Apollyon failed… some they cheated her, some deceived her with dead hopes, some mocked her for her foul odor, nowhere to sit down, except on the floor, outside…how many hospitals, cold nurses, sharp needles, the smell of preserved corpses down the corridor…all tests expensive….still no treatment…when the money was gone, they drove her away, shouting: ‘No free medicine here…Go home and die…Only God can help you, woman!’
All strength gone, all hope gone, all the silver coins gone…no improvement, the bleeding still goes on…she became worst, angry and bitter at the loss of all things, the deceitfulness of riches, the man -made hope that vanished in the morning, the plastic smiles, the fake greetings…yes, the end is worse than the beginning when sin is the king…
Then one day she heard a voice, a song, a bird preacher at the window…she was calling for all who are ‘heavy laden’, to come to God…for healing and freedom and miracles…The Gospel of peace…By grace…thru faith…Come, for the free gift of life eternal…
For the first time in years, her heart said ‘Yes!’…She got up, stumbled and fell, but got up again…
’Can I apply? Yes!
Can I come? Yes!
Am I worthy of the blessing? No!
But can I still come, just as I am, with one foot in the grave? Yes!
She got up from the place of nothingness and started moving on… without stopping to think…just pure faith…’He shall be pleased with me… Lord, I believe… If I touch His robe, I shall be healed!’…
I know You, my Lord, The Word made flesh, the Word igniting faith, God on earth…You do not need to pray to another…You do not need to ask for power…All power is in You, miraculous, abundant, death destroying power…Time is in Your hands…Wait for me , my Lord…’’
She had just one matchstick of faith in her hand…all fear lost, passing thru the crowd, she came behind the Master and touched His robe…the touch of faith, the touch of joining, the two became one, the touch of one- last- breath in His arms, the touch that started the flame, the touch that exploded the faith….the body shook as life found its place inside…and just like that…she was healed!!!
‘Virtue left Me – He said- the power resident in Me, the high voltage miracle power dropped a volte or two, I felt it; It went into a container of expecting faith; Who touched Me – He asked…?’
Trembling at His feet, strong enough now to worship, she testified to the truth…the crowd that pushed aimlessly drew back in respect as this lonely character, a stranger to many, was lifted up by the King, His lost daughter now found…
‘Go in peace, My lamb…your faith in Me has made you whole, complete and beautiful…use your strength to preach, use your joy to sing, use your life serving others in My name…’
‘Yes, Lord…Forever Yours…’

Abundant harvest

‘You have planted much but you have harvested little’ (Hag 1:6).
‘Give careful thought to your ways…’ appears three times in this letter. It is a command to use your mental faculty, to remember God’s promises and to think. One of the ways you can test yourself if you are filled with the Spirit is to test your mind. This is a simple question: how easy is it for you to think? How easy it is to remember the scriptures or the lessons of the past? Do you have any anxiety that your mind will ‘fail’ you when you teach others? Then you may have a problem. We are commanded to have the sound mind of Christ; it is a mind filled with God’s Word and ‘soaked’ in the Holy Spirit. We are to train ourselves to ‘wholesome thinking’ (2Pet 3:1, 2) by memorizing God’s word, His prophecies and promises.
The people neglected God’s House… like the servant who buried his talent (Mt 25:24-30). Instead they went to do their private business, to build their ‘paneled houses’ (Hag 1:4). This word in Hebrew means a roof, a cover or anything that protects or hides. The picture is one of secret sin, rebellion involving whole families. But we are reminded here that God knows and sees everything. Haggai gives us ‘a formula’ to detect if there is hidden secret sin in the house: If all your labor is just to build and furnish your house, you and your family will never know satisfaction! Read this: ‘there is not enough…they are not filled…they are not warm…there is not security…’ (Hag 1:5, 6). By ignoring God’s House, the family does not have peace, rest, joy or hope for the future. It is the sin of the parents that visits the children. In this time of global economic recession, this quiet hypocrisy, this hidden sin of neglecting God’s House may be one of the factors why so many struggle financially, why so much depression and broken homes! Selah!
Each time you have the feeling that you work much, you invest time and energy in your job but you still lack the basic things of life and you still have borrow money just to ‘survive’, then just stop and think. Pray and think! Think! It may be that you work in disobedience to God. ‘The devourer’ will have access to your finances. ‘You earn wages only to put them in a purse with holes in it’ (Hag 1:6).
The ‘emergency’ advice is this: Stop working! Repent! Humble yourself and ask God to reveal to you your secret sin. It is possible that you have become insensitive to the reality of your situation. Sin hardens the heart! You need the Holy Spirit to convict you of sin. God always answers the prayer of ‘a contrite heart’. God only blesses only the work He initiates. Any work that proceeds from flesh, from envy of others, from selfish ambition, from the ‘sweat of man’ is cursed by Him and no intercession can avail (Gen 3:17-19).
The work of God is easy and His burden light (Mt 11:28-30). Remember God’s House and the pastors there! Pay your tithes! When you are a co- laborer with God, you work little, you have peace and joy and you sleep well. But you make great profit, rich enough to help and impact others! A child of God is never forsaken by God and never begs for bread (Ps 37: 25, 26). This is the life style I will forever recommend to you! This is royal pattern of success for the children of God! May your eyes be open to see the Door!

The expensive smile of God as my reward

Sin must be exposed and repentance expected!
Prophetic anointing must be restored!
Then revival will come!
‘Then Zerubbabel…Joshua…and the whole remnant of the people obeyed the voice of the Lord their God and the message of the prophet Haggai…’ (Hag1:12).
Haggai prophesies concerns the faithful few that have volunteered to come back to Jerusalem to rebuild… the Temple and the city. Haggai exposes sin in their midst that is a barrier for God to come and bless. The people have come back to build God’s house but the difficulty they met there and the opposition from the enemies in the land have discouraged them. They became weak and have lost their focus. They started compromising God’s call and abandoned His project by replacing it with personal ones. They started building their houses and their businesses.
This is a point to remember that the devil does not persecute anyone who builds personal businesses even if it is done in the name ‘of Jesus’. But immediately you start building God’s house and refuse to compromise, he will attack you with weakness, confusion, division, fear or lust for material possessions. This is a good place to say this: God is calling people to lead revival in the land. He is calling them to the prophetic office to tell others the mind of God for that season in time. The prophetic gift is given to the church to build, strengthen and establish it (1Cor 14:3).
Each time you answer the call of God for ministry, the hardest time is to start it. It takes more energy for a vehicle to start moving from a position of rest than for it to increase speed later. The devil will attack the beginning of any ministry with violence to prevent the laying of a proper foundation. He knows the power of it. Do not compromise your foundation, do not use cheap materials, do not decrease its size (1Cor 3:10-15). Be faithful to the pattern God showed you ‘on the mountain’. Identify your enemy, be prayerful, watchful and resist him; he has to flee!
Trust God to perfect what He has started in you!
Rejoice in the glory revealed!
Let the smile of God over you be your reward, for that smile is more expensive than all the stars in the sky!
I know that you can do it!

Romantic adventure of secret find

ImageDo you want to be embarrassed and overwhelmed by an Account with ‘no withdrawal limit’? Then come to the Cross! Look long on the Crucified! Touch His Blood! Hear His Voice! Feel the death of the past! Sing a New Song! All is for you! Whatever treasure you find there, it is yours! And it is free! The price has been paid! The Lamb has overcome!
“I will give you the treasures of darkness; riches stored in secret places; so that you may know that I am the Lord, the God of Israel, who summons you by name!” (Is 45:3)

I am gentle and free!

‘But the fruit of the Spirit is…gentleness…Against such things there is no law’
‘A gentle answer turns away wrath’ (PV 15:1; Gal 5:22, 23)
* To be lovely and gracious; a sign of true royalty or high social class: ‘gentleman’
* To be humble, not costly to maintain, to have a small opinion about myself.
* To be teachable, submissive and obedient; calm and sweet; to have ‘feminine’ skills
* To be a good listener and counselor, sensitive and wise to the leading of the Spirit
* To be moderate, mild, modest and pleasant, avoiding extremes of speech and action
* To be merciful and compassionate to others
* To be meek it means to endure injury with patience without grudge or lust for vengeance; to have power under control.
The opposite of gentleness is to be violent and harsh. It means to be wild, undisciplined, difficult and rude, hot tempered and rough in speech and appearance. It is taken to be a sign of low social class.
I was surprised to discover that the meaning of this word in Greek is quite different from the above definitions in English. Gentleness in Greek means using just a little energy to deeply influence someone’s life. It is like the soft touch of the bee on the flower, like the holy kiss of a friend that imparts a miracle. That is why meek people are the best friends you can ever have.
Gentleness is not natural. It is the fruit of the Holy Spirit in the heart of the believer. This word means to be perfectly controlled emotionally especially under stress or in an embarrassing situation. It means to be composed, to have a permanent peace about you, never losing your temper. Except you have this fruit of meekness manifesting in you, you will not be able to totally obey the command that says: ‘Be angry and sin not’. Gentleness is the master of your anger making it possible for you never to be ashamed or regret your words and actions in time of provocation. Moses was the meekest man on earth. He was also capable of being very angry when need be. Meekness is not weakness but strength under the control of the Holy Spirit. It means that every drop of spiritual energy is used for the glory of God. Gentle people do not waste spiritual and physical energy! Selah! ‘
Dear Lord, please grant that I may be a gentle believer!!!
In Jesus name,

The profit of the Bible

‘All scripture is given by inspiration of God and is profitable for
doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness; that the man of God may be perfect, thoroughly furnished unto all good works.’ (2Tim 3:16, 17, KJ)
This scripture has to be memorized and meditated upon! I think of it often, especially when doing ministry. It is especially dear to me …when some people do not believe the Word that I preach. I mean that I do not see visible signs that they receive it. Then I remind myself that the Word of God is the only thing I have to preach, to teach or to counsel. I do not have any other tool, weapon or medicine. I have to believe that it is enough for me and it should be enough for my hearers.
*All scripture- means that each word, each ‘dot’, now and forever has anointing and power of life invested in it.
*God’s inspiration- This word means that God’s Spirit has inspired it, has breath of life in it. It means that when you hear the Word, you’ll be touched by the ‘breeze’ of heaven.
*Profitable- means that the Word has a purpose that can be achieved; you’ll see a profit, results. The Word of God is always practical.
The Word is profitable to the hearers. In Greek the word ‘profitable’ means to be helpful, to give an advantage over others, to make profit, to accumulate reward. Profit is the reward of a successful business man.
Do you want to be rich? Forget the study of economics…Study the Word of God! Then you will be rich! It works!

Let me be a woman of God!

crown-of-husband1When you are not yet married, or when your marriage is over and you look back on those years with longing, it is without doubt quite possible to idealize it. But there is one thing which enters into all of life, one thing which will keep us from idealizing life’s best and will make bearable life’s worst, and that is the Cross. The Cross must enter into marriage. “Who loveth suffereth too.”

The Cross enters the moment you recognize a relationship as a gift. The One who gives it may withdraw it at any time, and knowing this, you give thanks in the receiving. Desiring above all else to do the will of God, you offer back to Him this greatest of all earthly gifts as an oblation, lifted up in worship and praise, with faith that in the offering it will be transformed for the good of others.

This is what sacrifice means. This is why the Cross of Christ “towers o’er the wrecks of time.” Love is sacrificial. Sacrifice is giving, and offering up, and the meaning of sacrifice in the Bible is the giving of life to another.

~ Elisabeth Elliot, Let Me Be A Woman, 1976

The three robes of Jesus

Jesus crown
This was the day the Lord Jesus died. The prince of this world has done his worst. The Roman soldiers stripped Him naked and placed on him a purple robe. On His head they put a crown of thorns and in His hand an ordinary stick for a scepter. They staged a mock worship. They knelt before Him and laughed, singing: ‘Hail, king of the Jews…’ This was a cheap entertainment for soldiers who are bored with their daily routines and bitter with their low wages. At last, tired and sweating, with no one to clap for their improvised show, they disrobed Him again and took Him to Golgotha Hill.
At the foot of the Cross they cast lots for His clothes. The Jewish mothers use to saw a special robe for their first born sons. It is possible that Mary sawed that seamless robe, too good to be torn into pieces. One of the solders won it as his trophy and as a reminder of a day like no other. Mary, John and the other women were there watching, but none could help. Six hours later, the naked King, nailed on the tree, bowed His head. It was all ‘finished…’
A king is known by his robe, his crown and his scepter. The purple robe of Jesus was the robe of sin and shame. He wore it for me and for you so that in Him, we may become the righteousness of God. His second lovingly homemade robe was stolen from Him. The fake ‘queen of heaven’ disrobed and disgraced the true King. Her so called ‘victory’ lasted only a moment in time, when darkness covered the land. That same Cross that killed the Prince of Glory became her eternal shame, as a murderer for whom there is no mercy.
The third robe of Jesus was designed in heaven and none can disgrace or steal that. The King is now dressed with the royal robe of eternal and complete authority in heaven and on earth. He holds the scepter of righteousness. On His head are many crowns. No one can take these away! No one can steal His testimony! The Holy Spirit sent to earth is His royal gift and seal to us who believe. May all who acknowledge His majesty come forward and let the Worship begin…Let’s bring our successes, our crowns and place them at His feet…for He alone is worthy, to receive all power and praise, forever!
“I saw heaven standing open and there before me was a white horse, whose Rider is called Faithful and True. With justice He judges and makes war. His eyes are like blazing fire and on His head are many crowns…He is dressed in a robe dipped in Blood and His name is the Word of God…On His robe and on His thigh He has this name written: King of kings and Lord of lords!” (Rev 19)

The wife must respect her husband

‘However, each one of you also must love his wife as he loves himself, and the wife must respect her husband’ (Eph 5:33)
As a wife, I am transparent to my husband. I cannot tell him ‘everything’ because that means I will talk too much and he will be tired of my voice. But all my decisions are done in the presence of God, confirmed thru prayer and also honoring my office as his wife. My testimony as a wife has to be available to my husband for His encouragement. The heart is like glass, clean or dirty. I have to wash mine daily from worldly dust, so it will not hide sin. With just a glance, my husband should look into my eyes and know that all is well with both of us! My submission to my husband should draw us closer to God and to one another.
The Bible is the foundation of a good marriage. Read scriptures in your bedroom, before you sleep. The Word of God should be your delight, sweeter than your daily food, stronger than your personal dreams and safer than your home.
The more I study the Bible, the more I love it! The Bible is a stranger to you except you read it; you study it and daily apply its words in practice. Have you tried to imagine how your life can be if you truly obey the Word of God? Even so, the best you can imagine is still below the vision of who you can be, according to God’s plan and purpose in Christ…
“Father, help me, I’ve wasted enough time…please increase my hunger for Your Word…help me obey You voice…help me to submit to my husband and fulfill my destiny as a godly wife in Christ…I depend on You, in Jesus name I pray, amen!”


I would love to tell you what I think of Jesus,
Since I found in Him a friend so strong and true.
I would tell you how
He changed my life completely;
He did something no other friend could do.

No one ever cared for me like Jesus;
There’s no other friend so kind as He.
No one else could take the sin
And darkness from me;
O how much He cared for me.

All my life was full of sin when Jesus found me;
All my heart was full of misery and woe,
Jesus placed His strong arms about me
And He led me in the way I ought to go.

Ev’ry day He comes to me with new assurance;
More and more I understand His word of love.
But I’ll never know just why He came to save me,
Till someday I see His blessed face above.
(by C F Weigle)God loved first

True love

It is our privilege to come to you thru the word of God. We shall give to you from what we have received from the Lord. We proclaim Christ and Him crucified. No other gift compares with Him. We pray that your life will change as we’ll walk together following the Lamb. We promise to give God all the glory for He alone is worthy. Amen.
In these last days the Bible says that there will be ‘perilous times’ (2Tim 3:1). The word in Greek means something that is extremely difficult, terrible and dangerous. It means you will encounter situations and people that will let you down and try to make you fall; strike at you and betray you when you least expect it. The intent is to weaken your will and your commitment to Christ so that you will backslide. This is the truth because it is God’s opinion as recorded in His word. There are only two ways to react to it. You either take the warning seriously and prepare your heart for the battle, or you ignore it at your own loss. The flesh is a coward, hates to be warned and to prepare to please the Lord. But for them that walk in the Spirit, the warning of God is a sign of His Fatherly love and they come to appreciate it.
The strategy of God in these last days is to manifest His love that never fails. If you are a believer, then you are God’s child and you should be ready to represent Him to all people, everywhere. Another word for love is worship. We are told that God is seeking worshippers who will worship Him in Spirit and in truth (Jn 4:23, 24). Worship means extreme, total and sacrificial love. Because true love never fails (1Cor 13:8), true worship also never fails. The more you love and worship God, the fewer mistakes you make. God wants His children to live a life of worship, which means a life of freedom and total victory. (Lk 1:74).
In the natural, it takes about a year for a baby to walk unaided. It takes even longer for a child to come to maturity and to learn how to love His parents and others. In the same way, in the Spirit realm, it takes a long time for a believer to mature and to learn to love God and others. It is a long and difficult journey and few are ready to pay the price. Salvation is the gate that opens and you go into another ‘country’. It is called ‘the Kingdom of God’. Salvation is free because Jesus paid it all; surely not cheap, but free. After passing thru that gate, there starts the road toward maturity, which the Bible calls ‘sanctification’. Not all people are willing to pay the price for spiritual growth in the same way. That is why you see some people are faster than others; they are willing to be trained by the Holy Spirit. They take the word of God seriously, they learn the art of prayer, they value the fellowship of the brethren and so they make great progress. Other are satisfied to be barely saved and they trail behind becoming a source of discouragement to many.
Because we are all born into sin and have bad habits that grieve the Holy Spirit, we all need radical training. God Himself is willing to be your teacher. We are talking in particular about the Person of God the Holy Spirit. He prepares you to meet the King. It is true that the way to the throne has been opened forever by the sacrifice of Jesus on the cross. But you still need much preparation of the heart to draw near God without your conscience condemning you.
To be a worshiper is not just to be a singer. It is not enough to just go to church or doing ‘spiritual’ things. A worshipper is a true, spiritual lover of God. He is practicing the art of taking the cross daily and following Jesus. ‘For whoever loses his life for Me will save it…’ (Lk 9:23, 24). If you pay the price to be a true worshipper, you will ‘save’ your life, you will live long. It is the promise of God. (Ps 91:14-16).
Like any good work, it is hard at the beginning to sustain a life style of worship. The flesh wars against the spirit and will prove resistant to any change in you (Gal 5:17). But God has the last say in any matter. If you are willing and truly desire to live your life to God’s glory, you will become stronger in the pursuit of God. The more you worship God, the stronger you become, the more you will ‘enjoy’ your Christian life. God will never tell you to do anything that He will not encourage and empower you to the end.
The Son of God, Jesus Christ our Lord, is the greatest Worshipper ever. Thru this process of sanctification, you will become more and more like Him. Remember this: Nothing and nobody has the power to change the heart of man except God who created it. In other words, none can make you a true worshipper except the God who saved you. As your flesh dies and your spirit rises within you, you will start to reflect the beauty and the glory of God in this dark and dangerous world. The love of many will become cold in these last days (Mt 24:12). Fake worshippers will surely become tired and go back to their life of sin. But God will raise His army of worshippers as a standard against all the wickedness in high places. That is why your life of worship will be a testimony for His love to you, His power and His glory. This is your destiny child of God!
May it be so to you in the name of Jesus! Amen!

What a kiss…

‘And again they wept together, and Orpah kissed her mother-in-law good-bye. But Ruth clung tightly to Naomi’ (Ru 1:14)
Naomi, her husband and two sons left Bethlehem because of famine in the land. They went to the enemy country of Moab and settled there. Naomi becomes a widow, having to bury her husband in a strange land of compromise. Her two sons get married with Moabite women, Orpah and Ruth. The sons die too leaving behind three widows. Naomi decides to go back to her country, having heard that God has blessed the land once more with good harvests.
Her two daughters in law decide to follow her. It is clear that they saw her as a woman of God, a true mother and a mentor. She thought them all the good things they knew. She was wise, patient, strong and gentle in the same time. She spoke to them about Jehovah and His laws. They both got attracted by the promise of a life full of joy, purity and true worship. They wanted to serve the only Holy God.
That dream was the very opposite of the life style of their people. The god of Moab, Chemosh, was a wicked and erratic god that none could predict. They had to offer many sacrifices to please him. Children were thrown alive in the fire of the altar of Chemosh. But Naomi told them that Jehovah was different; the only Faithful, Wonderful, Loving and Mighty God of the universe. So the decision to leave Moab and to go to Bethlehem was no so difficult at the beginning.
But then, the long journey home started. The road was dusty and the sun too hot. None greeted them along the way. The reality of their decision came before their eyes. They will go to a country where they will be foreigners and refugees. They shall be discriminated by all, for the Jews hated the Moabites. They have to learn a new language, new table manners and new traditions. They have to completely forget about their own childhood country, the fashion of family and friends. They have to accept the situation that Naomi has no wealth, no status and no more sons. There is a great risk that they will become beggars or prostitutes, especially after the death of Naomi. They do not know any single soul in Bethlehem so loneliness shall be their portion for a long time. They shall die and be buried in a land where their families can never come to visit.
Was it worth it? Can a man lose everything for the sake of a dream and not become a loser? Does Jehovah accept them or they are forcing themselves upon His mercy? What if they become home-sick and there shall be no cure for the broken heart? What if they will die poor, unhappy, rejected widows? There is no going back once they cross over…What if they shall regret this radical decision?
In the midst of these painful questions, their true heart was revealed. Orpah wept and wailed but then she made her choice…she kissed her mother in law good-by and went back to her people and to her gods. Let’s see why…
The name Orpah means ‘the gazelle’.
A gazelle is a beautiful animal, a small antelope. In the East, they are seen as the symbols of feminine beauty. They live in family groups. They are hunted by all animals and even by men. They are very vulnerable creatures. Their horns just add to their beauty; these are not used for protection. Their only way to escape the predators is by running very fast. The gazelle is very alert to danger, having as impressive sense of smell, sight and hearing. When the predators chase them, they not only run very fast but they leap high in the air. These jumps decrease the speed but the gazelle uses them to intimidate the hunter. For example, cheetahs go back from pursing a gazelle once she leaps in the air above her.
Orpah, the Gazelle, went back to Moab possibly because she was afraid of the unknown dangers of the future. The threat of living in Israel seems to increase with each step along the way. She did not trust Jehovah enough to feel safe under His care. She already knew the dangers in her home country. She was used to that. But she has to learn new methods of defense. The gazelle cannot survive alone. The thought of loneliness in the new country was too much for Orpah to bear. Her imagination went wild…Any man can oppress, insult, rape or kill her…The fear rose in her heart and won the battle over her faith in Naomi’s God.
Like the rich young ruler, she loved Jesus but not enough to forsake all things for Him. So she wept bitterly for the dreams that died under a tree along the road…She wanted to be a woman of God, but the price Jehovah is asking of her is just too great…That is the end of the road for her…she made her choice…she embraced and kissed her mother in law for all the beautiful memories and gifts of the past…but there is no future for them together…she kissed Naomi once more, the kiss that says ‘I will never see you again’…and taking on her back the few things that belong to her, she went back to her family and to her gods… On my cheeks, tears flowing free…I taste the last kiss from your lips…What a kiss…
Yes, in moments like these, I look up to You, my Lord…may the tears of sadness be replaced with the joy of Your presence…with the power of a new beginning…with the encouragement coming from the faith of another daughter, who passing the same fire and the same pain, remained faithful unto the end…her name is Ruth. But her story is for another time…

‘I am willing- be clean!’

‘A man with leprosy came to Jesus and begged Him on his knees” ‘If you are willing, you (alone) can make me clean…’ Filled with compassion, Jesus reached out His hand and touched the man: ‘I am willing- He said- Be clean! Immediately the leprosy left him and he was cured’ (Mk 1:40-42)
Leprosy is a disease that has been known since biblical times. It is contagious but not easily transmitted. It passes on thru the body fluids of an untreated person to another. It causes skin sores, nerve damage, and muscle weakness that gets worse over time. Skin lesions are the primary external sign. Left untreated, leprosy can be progressive, causing permanent damage to the skin, nerves, limbs and eyes. In advanced stages the nose becomes flat due to destruction of nasal cartilage. The sound during speech is changed and the face is totally disfigured. People with long-term leprosy cannot use of their hands or feet due to repeated injury because they lack feeling in those areas.
For thousands of years, there was no treatment known for leprosy. There is treatment now but it is effective only if started early. Prevention consists of avoiding close physical contact with untreated people.

In the Bible, leprosy is a type of sin (Lev 13 and 14).
Man is born a sinner. In Greek, the word ‘sin’ is defined as ‘missing the mark, going astray, to do wrong, to break the law of God’. Sin is transgression and lawlessness. Sin separates us from God. Sin is falling short of the glory of God.
Just like with leprosy, sin disfigures man, it makes him ugly. God is a Holy God and we are called to be holy like Him. Holiness is beauty. The devil uses seduction to attract his victims into his net. Seduction is a necessary crime to manipulate, to make a man fall into sin. If the victim could see the ugliness of sin, he will run away from it. Just remember this: sin is ugly like a monster!
Just like with leprosy, sin weakens the will of man. The closer the temptation, the less power you have to run away from sin. Flee fornication! Do not be interested or curious to see how the devil operates. Run while you can! Treasure your soul! Be jealous over your testimony, dear Believer! It is the most expensive thing you possess. It is your weapon and your crown.
Just like with leprosy, in sin the heart becomes hardened. You lose any feeling for others. You lose any desire to love, to have compassion and to help another. Your conscience is damaged. It becomes harder and harder to say ‘sorry’. You cannot feel their pain; you don’t care about others. You quarrel and become violent. Repentance becomes a strange and impossible word. The deceitfulness of sin brings about this hardness and wickedness of heart.
Just like with leprosy, sin is incurable. There is no human cure available for sin. Some try going to church and become religious, others ignore the problem…but nothing works, nothing removes the guilt of sin from the heart of man. The stain, the ugliness, the deceit, the shame is there, destroying the man who was created to be in the image of God.
In the Old Testament, there was no cure for leprosy. Occasionally Jehovah Rapha will manifest and grant a miracle of healing to a leprous. Then the priest will offer two birds as a sacrifice to God. One will be killed and its blood mingled with water. It will be used for cleansing the man who was healed. Then gradually, the man can come back to his house. The second bird will be dipped in that same water with blood and released, to fly free and happy. This is a beautiful picture of the Cross, how the Blood of the Lamb has set us free from sin and shame.
The Holy Spirit is the only Person who can open our eyes to convict us of sin and of the need for salvation. God can use men to preach the truth, but until the Holy Spirit applies the truth to our conscience, we remain ignorant of our need of God. The Holy Spirit work is peculiar. If you have not experienced it, then it is impossible to describe it to you. True repentance of sin is the most difficult and painful experience a man can encounter in this life. The feeling is like seeing hell, touching death…all false hope vanishes and I stand naked before God…I see myself as His enemy and traitor….No hope… No prayer can be said for the mouth is too weak to utter anything. No one can stand on his feet. For the first time you accept the verdict: guilty! Falling at the feet of Jesus and pleading for His mercy with groans that only the Holy Spirit can utter, that is the only thing you can do….
Tested counsel: Do not make it easy for a sinner arrested by the power of the Holy Spirit. Leave him in the hands of God! Let him cry and let him plead for mercy. It may take hours or days…But the moment will come when the peace of God shall descend and cleanse, heal and save his soul…I have witnessed this miracle of life with many…
‘What can wash my sins away? Nothing but the Blood of Jesus!’
Do you rejoice as you read these words? Can you say Amen! Do you identify with them? Do you have a burden to pray that souls be saved? Do you hate sin? Are you dead to sin? Do you love righteousness and holiness? Do you pay the price to be like Jesus?
Then blessed are you, for you are free! Gove God all the glory! In Jesus name, amen!
(in the picture, an Indian widow, former leprous patient, saved by the Lord Jesus, worships Him!)

God gives His beloved sleep

‘Unless the Lord builds the house, they labor in vain who build it. Unless the Lord guards the city, they watchman stays awake in vain. Behold, children are a heritage from the Lord; the fruit of the womb is a reward. It is vain for you to rise up early, to sit up late, to eat the bread of sorrows; for He gives His beloved sleep’ (Ps 127)

Sleep is a gift from God. Sleep is a blessed time when the brain shuts down and the body rests from labor. During sleep, the body repairs itself from what was lost or damaged while awake. Sleep is the best medicine for a sick man. The immunity of the body is restored during sleep, so the body can fight diseases. During sleep the growth hormone is released; the muscles, tissues and bones grow mostly during the time of sleep.
The lack of sleep is called insomnia. The principal cause for sleep deprivation is anxiety. Chronic insomnia is a sickness that affects the whole person, body, soul and spirit. It causes weakness of the mind and the body; everything happens in slow motion. Often the patients have hallucinations (they see things that do not exist in reality). The imagination is burdened by unnecessary images. Sleep deprivation results in muscular pains and fatigue, headache, migraines, high blood pressure, panic attacks and depression. It affects the concentration, the memory, the ability to make decisions or risk taking. The person who cannot sleep well loses the skill to be creative mentally. He has problems thinking of new solutions in solving the problems of life. He becomes mechanical and repetitive, making the same mistakes again and again. He is slow of identifying the open door of opportunity and breakthrough. Lack of sleep produces road accidents as often as driving under the influence of alcohol. There is a form of extreme insomnia that is fatal. There is no medical treatment for it. The patient is so anxious to sleep that he cannot sleep at all. Death follows in less than one year.
In some prisons, lack of sleep is a form of torture, to break the will of the prisoner until he confesses some information. According to their testimony, after some days and nights of sleeplessness, a cloud comes upon the mind; the spirit is wearied to death, the legs become weak and the man has only one desire left: to sleep. Not even hunger and thirst are comparable with it.

God blesses His people with sleep to reveal Himself thru dreams, to restore their strength and comfort their souls. God put Adam to sleep to create Eve from his rib. He put Abram to sleep to reveal to him the challenges ahead and the great victory and blessings that follow. Jacob slept and saw God above the divine ladder. He saw his destiny and was encouraged.
God uses sleep to weaken the enemies of His people. He put King Saul and his men to ‘deep sleep’ and made them vulnerable to destruction. God removes sleep when He wants to talk to men in the night. This is how God talked to Kings Nebuchadnezzar and Xerxes and they had to dramatically change their lives.
The devil has his evil strategies. Jonah slept to run away from God. ‘The wicked man cannot sleep until he makes someone fall’. The unbelievers hate or love sleep to the extremes. Some work all the time and forsake sleep, to build and protect personal empires. Some worry to have successful children. But their reward is ‘the bread of sorrows’. Others are lazy, they love sleep until they becomes poor. Samson went to sleep in the laps of Delilah, the pillow of Jezebel and so he lost his eyes and his freedom. The foolish virgins slept carelessly and lost the opportunity to enter into the rest and joy of salvation and marriage.
So what is the secret of successful sleep? It lies in the Word of God: You spend your energy during the day seeking God and His Kingdom. Then in the night you sleep. The blessings will follow. No need to worry about food or houses or children. Sleep will be peaceful and sweet, a ‘gift from God without sorrows’.

Finally, let’s go down under the deck and sleep with Jesus. The waves and billows may crash around, the storm may shake the boat, and people may think I do not care, but for me…that is the best place in the world, lying at Your feet…and when I awake, I shall be like You Lord, strong and refreshed, full of faith and courage… I too shall command the winds and the waves around me to be still, for their Master has spoken!
‘Dear Heavenly Father, just in case I was not grateful enough for the gift of good, peaceful and refreshing sleep…I am sorry…I want to say ‘thank You’ for the day of labor and for the night of rest, for Your constant presence with me, knowing that You do not sleep and do not slumber…I am eternally safe in Your care, so I worry no more… in Jesus name I pray, Amen!’

Closed doors and open heavens

This is the story of the widow of a prophet in training. He was a member of the ‘company of the prophets’. He borrowed money to train for ‘ministry’. Now he is dead and his wife is in desperate need. She makes an excellent choice: she goes for counsel to Elisha, who has just received the mantle of double anointing from Elijah. She wisely avoi…ds the late husband’s colleagues in the ministry. The company of prophets witnessed the last hours in the life of Elijah and the change of mantle of leadership. But they ’viewed standing from afar’. Like Peter and the rest of the disciples, once the Lord was arrested, they followed the drama from afar. These prophets even tried to discourage Elisha not to follow too closely, lest he will be disappointed. They wanted the title of prophets, of men of God, but they also wanted to ‘play it safe’…
The woman’s husband was in this circle of religious applicants for earthly crowns. He feared the Lord but he feared men too.He was now dead. Nobody knows how many times his wife prayed and wished that her husband will be more committed to God; not just religious; that he will go closer to ‘Oga’ Elijah just the way Elisha has done. Who knows how their life could have been if he was willing to pay the price for ‘the double anointing…’ But he was gone now. No need to pray for the sanctification of a man in the grave. She decides to do what her late husband ignored. She will trust the God who answers by fire and by oil, the God of Elijah and Elisha…and so, the miracle happened…
She heard the story of Elijah, the man who did not die, the man faithful to the last moment, the chariots of fire…She met with Elisha, the only apprentice who came close enough to burn with the fire of Elijah…
(The word to remember is COMMITMENT. It means to be faithful, loyal to the end to somebody who is worthy of your faithfulness; first to God and then to them who open the way and cover your head. When the prophets call you aside, when people hurt you, do you abandon God and go away? No matter how gifted or beautiful, one can be successful without commitment!)
Behind closed doors, far from the greedy eyes of merchants and tax collectors, far away from the rules of the religious ghetto, far away from the lust of the entertainers…she trusted God for life and salvation, for her and children. In the dim light of the Shekinah glory, face to face with God and His mercy, she became a hero and a prophetess; she became free to see the open heavens of Elijah and his chariots of fire…
O, Lord…only You alone know the secret and the power of intimacy and countless stories of unedited miracles that have happened in the kitchens, under the bridges or in the prison cells… To You O, Lord, I bow my knees tonight…
(2Kg 2 and 4)