What Would Smith Wigglesworth or a mom do?

The March 21 offering in Devotional by Smith Wigglesworth is the tale of a miracle healing, wherein before Smith came on the scene God prepared a woman’s heart to receive. This was a handy thing for me to be reading, as my son came to ask for healing prayer just after I finished. My heart was prepared to pray, and I wanted his heart prepared as well.

“First,” I answered, “Sit down and do me the honor of letting me read this to you.” Benjamin sat and I read Smith’s marvelous story, beginning with Matthew 8:17: He Himself took our infirmities and bore our sicknesses.

After finishing the devotion, I took Benjamin’s right hand and wrist (where the pain was) and began praying, during which action I was impressed to remind my son that his name means “Son of the Right Hand.” There was much more, and he received more than healing. He received encouragement.

I didn’t wake up encouraged today, and I was in no mood to encourage anyone else. But then there came that miracle thing called Quiet Time, and I was encouraged by the words of Jesus in the Gospel of John; then by Paul in I Corinthians with Love words, and David speaking straight to my heart in Psalms.

In Oswald Chambers’ My Utmost for His Highest I was struck by the statement, “I have been identified with Him in His death.” Pondering this, I read from Smith Wigglesworth, focusing on the fifth verse of Isaiah 53: But He was wounded for our transgressions, He was bruised for our iniquities, the chastisement for our peace was upon Him, and by His stripes we are healed.

I choose to identify myself with The Healer.

The final thought in this devotion is, “One bit of unbelief against the Word is poison.”

He IS the Healer. Amen.

An Ash Wednesday Like No Other? Lent for all Christians?

I hear tell that 20% of Protestants participate in Lent, which is essentially a Catholic thing. So, in looking into the idea of setting aside a period of time for dedicated fasting and prayer, beginning with Ash Wednesday, I have a brilliant idea for us all: What might we accomplish if we, on Ash Wednesday, set our alarms and/or timers to go off every 90 minutes, at which time we stop and pray.

What if we put it on our calendars to fast and pray every Wednesday and Friday, along with Christian believers all over the world, throughout Lent and beyond? What if the voices of millions are lifted on high, beginning tomorrow, every 90 minutes, all day long?

I plan to pray The Lord’s Prayer, speak Psalm 91 over everyone in any way involved in the fiasco between Ukraine and Russia, and further as the Holy Spirit leads. I am beginning tomorrow, hopefully with you, my very Dear Reader, and all those with whom you share this post.

None of us have anything at all more important to do than stop and pray tomorrow, every 90 minutes if at all possible. Why 90 minutes? Because long ago when I read and followed Jordan Rubin’s The Maker’s Diet and included his suggestion to pray regarding making the changes therein every 90 minutes, I found it to be quite effectual. It was a leaning on, a pressing into, a cleaving to, the wisdom and comfort of God.

Why is this important, why will it work? Because when the world sees Christians united they will see the goodness of God. Because we will be mighty–victorious over darkness and despair! Because we will bless the Lord.

So again, join me in creating a worldwide wave of spiritual might unto the pulling down of strongholds–in Ukraine, Russia, and everywhere else!

Begging is not Praying

I turned 63 at midnight and have been praying ever since. I can’t stop. Each time I try and think I’ll go to sleep, I start again. But let us back up. I keep using that word, “praying” and I do not think it means what you (maybe) think it means. My friend said it’s time to stop praying and start declaring and decreeing according to the Word, according to the promises, of God.

I thought that was part of prayer. Well, so does she, but in response to the unbelieving begging done by her prayer group, she’s defining prayer as do they: a begging of an unpredictable God. This, my dearest reader, is a mixing of covenants.

Unless and until you believe and receive what Jesus gave/accomplished on the Cross, you will never walk in victory, you will never pray the fervent, effectual prayers of a righteous man. “Abraham believed God and it was accounted to him as righteousness.”

Begging and hoping God might be in a good mood, that you might be “good enough” to get a good outcome, is not righteous behavior. Going around parrotting the evil report that “God is sovereign” as a cop-out, rather than standing fearlessly in faith come Hell or high water, is not righteous behavior. “Sovereign” is another one of those words you (maybe) keep using and which does not mean what you think it means.

Praying a paltry begging prayer from a heart full of pride and unforgiveness rather than from a confident heart–one cleansed via the childlike acceptance of the free gift of Jesus’ shed blood at Calvary–isn’t pious, it isn’t effectual, it isn’t righteous. It is selfish.

It is thinking that it’s so much all about you that you’re going to ignore the gift of the blood of Jesus. So, like my friend’s prayer group ladies, you can meet all day and all night and beg and beg and cry and cry for God to “do something” but until you receive and believe what He’s already done, you’re wasting your time.

Pathetic, paltry, lily-livered Christianity has got to go. It’s time to man-up, trust, and obey. And it’s time to stop believing lies of so-called “spiritual authorities” and just believe God. Jesus said to love and pray for our enemies; He said to trust and obey; over and over and over He said, “Fear not.” He said if we’d humble ourselves He’d heal our land. He said John 10:10. He said we have what we say. But He never said to beg.

Takin’ Out the Paper and the Trash

When we take out the kitchen trash at our house we get the bathroom trash, John’s office, and anything else that needs taking out. I was thinking of that this morning as I had my Quiet Time.

If I forget Who loves me I will live in contact with the one who hates me–in the dumpster with the trash. If I focus on what’s wrong I will be blind to what’s real and right and true. If I harbor (shelter and hold in my arms and heart) unforgiveness I will have no peace. When, through disobedience and ignorance (“my people perish for lack of knowledge”) I go my own way, I fail. Every single time.

It’s all trash and I choose to take it out, all day every day. It’s not going to be in my house.

Dastardly Division

Yesterday my daughter and I went to Wyoming where there are fewer mask-querades than in Colorado, and while there joined a coffee shop meeting of Wyoming conservatives. These were fine folks, but there was no mention of God. These were, I thought beforehand, good, salty, no-nonsense Wyoming git-er-done types. Christians.

But, in fact, they are like so many of us, handicapped. In the parking lot I saw anti-Colorado bumper stickers. “Colorado is Wyoming’s Mexico” and a few other uncomplimentary offerings prepared me for the remarks of the man next to me. In a nutshell, he said, “We hate Colorado.”

There was a question about Mark Gaetz’s motives in coming to Wyoming’s “Impeach Liz Cheney” rally, as in, “Why did we get an outsider?” I thought we were all Americans. More division. How does the great evil of socialism win over freedom? With division.

(Socialist “intellectual” Bhaskar Sunkara praises Bernie Sanders and Jeremy Corbyn for promoting “a renewal of class antagonism” which is essential for the thriving of evil in society.)

Back to the meeting in Wyoming: One of the attendees belittled another conservative in attendance (better than behind his back, maybe?) in front of everyone; later the speaker said about Cheyenne (where we were), “I hate this city.” Could it be that in judging the bringers of division and crassness, we become divisive and crass? More divided?

I’m asking these questions in prayer this morning, along with the question, “What is the new song You want us to sing, Father?” I was reading and re-reading Psalm 96: “Sing unto the Lord a new song.” Certainly that precludes the same old, same old, melodies of anger and defensiveness. Of division.

So, let’s think a bit about this. How far have we gotten with division? More to the point, how far have we gotten with disobedience to God? Perhaps we should begin our song with words straight from His Word. Just like David, let us sing Psalms.

Pondering and praying a bit more, I asked, “Do we stop going to fear-filled churches as a means ofprotecting ourselves from fear, even as we stop going to division-filled political gatherings to protect ourselves from division?” Or are these examples of the classic throwing-the-baby-out-with-the-bathwater mistake?

“Father, You promise us wisdom for the asking, and I’m asking for wisdom. Surely there is no other source.”

Some things are so obvious we look right over them. We go to the TV for answers, and politcal gatherings for good company, and when it comes right down to it, if we’re not keeping company with Jesus, if we’re not doing the “Seek ye first” thing, we’re without a hope.

“My hope is in You, Lord. Amen.”

Casual Won’t Cut It

I was searching for a good word on YouTube and Richard Roberts’ Santa Claus face caught my eye–aren’t we all looking for a smile and some cheer? He spoke two things I’ve been saying: “The time for casual Christianity is over” was the concluding statement; the admonition was to join him as a “watchman on the wall.”

As Richard Roberts suggested, I read Isaiah 62:6, which says, “I have set watchmen on your walls, O Jerusalem; they shall never hold their peace day or night. You who make mention of the Lord, do not keep silent.”

I believe God is calling us all to “strengthen the hands that hang down” (Hebrews 12:12) via prayer for each other and against the darkness, and that we are to never hold our peace.

Distractions abound, especially against time in the Word of God, but we don’t have to be distracted from praying. We must simply pray then and there, here and now, coming in and going out.

When my beautiful friend Pam told me how to pray about a personal issue (something in my heart that needed changing and healing) I prayed right then and there as she listened on the phone. Don’t wait for a “good time” to pray. Right now is a good time to pray!

About anything and everything.

And by the way, don’t pray like a heathen trying to appease an angry god: “Oh, God! Oh, God! Oh, oh, oh.” Along with sacking casual Christianity, it’s time to sack pathetic and pitiful Christianity. Pray the Word!

What does the Word say? “Let this mind be in you which was also in Christ Jesus” (Philippians 2:5). You can’t do this when you’re listening to every other voice. Once again, the days when we could do that, when we could be casual about our Christianity, are over.

We’re it, Folks. God works through faith. I’ve heard it said that faith is God’s currency, and fear is Satan’s. So, let’s get faith via hearing the Word of God. Hearing. Romans 10:17 tells us how: “So then faith comes by hearing, and hearing by the Word of God.”

After I heard Richard Roberts reading Isaiah 62 last night, I heard it again this morning as I read it aloud. Faith comes, the Bible tells us. By hearing. If ever in my lifetime I needed faith to come, enduring and steadfast faith, it is now, in “such a time as this” (Esther 4:14).

It’s time to roll up our sleeves, and get to it. Faith, I mean. So repeat after me (remember you need to hear): “No fear here.”

Opportunities to Pray, Because Fear is NOT the Way!

Yay for the abundance of “opportunities to pray” all day!  

When our daughter Hannah was targeted for abortion – doc said I’d die otherwise – I said to my husband John, “You know what this is?  This is an opportunity to pray.”

When she was in intensive care at birth (36 units of Pitocin) there it was again, an opportunity to pray.  What else could we do?  Praise God for things we can’t possibly fix!

I didn’t die, Hannah came home the next day with me, instead of staying in ICU the forecasted “minimum two weeks”, and she is an extremely lovely, fit and healthy 24-year-old today.

I taught her by example, even from the womb, that fear is not the way.

Psalm 139:13,14 – For You formed my inward parts; You covered me in my mother’s womb.  I will praise You for I am fearfully and wonderfully made; Marvelous are Your works and that my soul knows very well.

WHAT? ME WORRY? I’M DONE WITH DEFEAT!!!!!!!!!!!!

Watching everyone lose their minds over Covid has been more than perplexing and puzzling.  It’s been revelatory!  I am EXCITED about what God’s up to here.

Now, before anyone thinks I’m saying God did this, I’m not!  But the Bible tells us He turns what Satan intends for evil to the good of those who love Him.  For me, that is so, so true.

I am seeing (so surprising) that it is often those who never set foot in church who have the most light and the least fear of a flu bug.

I’m finding those who didn’t finish high school, and certainly never got a college degree, are the ones who see through the lies and laugh at the fear.  I’m learning from those “least likely to succeed” types, how to succeed.

There is both logic and the ability to listen without pride, to what I have to say, from those among us who are humble.  And it’s humbling.  And freeing.  To such as these I can talk about ideas.

So here’s an idea:  What if everything we’re worried about and carrying on about in the world, is simply the inevitable consequence of a church that has dropped the ball.

What if the fear that was festering in the breasts of the world, exploded when the church showed that all its talk of faith was a farce, as doors closed without a whimper, citing misunderstood scriptures as justification.

Here’s the thing about all this “obedience to civil authority” stuff.  If obedience to authority is making you comfy, question your motives.  If it’s making you very, very uncomfortable, go with it.  God’s ways are often a bit stretching.

Let me elaborate:  When the likes of Paul and Peter admonished their wildfolk followers to behave and obey laws, they (Paul and Peter) were either on their way to, in, or just out of jail.  For, you guessed it, misbehavior and disobeying “authority”.  It went without saying, so they didn’t say it, that they weren’t talking about disobeying God in order to obey man.

This Covid thing is causing us to look to the real Author and Finisher of our Faith, and it’s obviously not someone who preaches, but does not practice, faith.

“You have to be ready to go to jail,” I said to my daughter about it.  “I am, Mom,” she said.  “I refuse to live in fear.”

No fear here.  As for me and my house, we will obey the Lord.  And to help us in that we’ll hang out with people of simple, unpolluted (by Bible college?) faith.  Amen.

P.S.  If our Founding Fathers had mindlessly obeyed man, had done the comfy thing, there would be no America.  If Paul and Peter had obeyed man, there would be no New Testament, and no New Testament church.  Wait?  Is there a New Testament church?  I’ve looked all over my town and the only one I can find speaks only Spanish.

Perhaps I should learn Spanish.  Or just go to “church” with my daughter, which is on the streets, with the poor, tired, addicted.  The humble.

Church.  What is it?  Who is it?  Who’s the Boss of it, of me?  One of the speakers at the Bible college my daughter attended was saying that American Christians need to be more like the Russians, where “they don’t have the problem we have here with submission to authority.”

We became a nation in part because God wanted to deliver people who were sick and tired of tyrannical authority and who came here for FREEDOM (such as my Russian friends), not yet another yoke of bondage.

There is one God, One Savior, one Final Authority.  And it AINT a man in a suit in a pulpit with a degree giving him man’s stamp of approval.  Will the real Christians please stand up?

Yes, I am asking myself if I qualify.  Do I trust and obey?  Him.

P.S. I was never afraid of the flu, but I was distressed by the frenzied and mindless mask and sanitizer worship, by the evidence of a society-wide lack of faith. I struggled with an uneasiness and  uncertainly early on (when we still called it Corona Virus) and when I prayed about it I realized I had made a grave error.  I had judged other Christians for their faithless reactions, for fear.  Well, as you may or may not know, it’s not only what you fear that will come upon you (see Job), but it’s also what you judge.  So, I repented and began to pray for the Church, and indeed the whole world, to be free from fear.  Absolutely free from the awful torment of fear.  Agree wtih me, please.

And another thing!  The reason I am free from fear is because, day in and day out, I read the Word of God, which builds and builds and builds my faith.  “Abraham believed God, and it was accounted to him for righteousness.”

 

What I Did on My Corona Vacation

Over the past several months, I have frequently pondered the possibilities for the closet in my foyer (once used as a little office by children now grown and gone).  When a speaker at my church started talking about the marvels of having a Prayer Closet, I began to scratch that itch, one I didn’t even know was there.

Could the foyer closet work?  Maybe, but shouldn’t a Prayer Closet be quiet, rather than in the flow of traffic?  And it was a bit small – would the fetal position actually be conducive to hearing from God?  That, I knew, was what I wanted.  I wanted to pray Holy Spirit-led prayers, to be changed, and a conduit of change.  I wanted to commune with God.

I dared to dreamUninterrupted.  Private.  Whenever I wanted or needed to get alone. A place for all my stuff, my prayer and praise “paraphernalia”.  Mine.  So I could be more His.

And there it was – the room attached to the side of my utility room, functioning as linen closet, gift wrapping station, sewing/ironing spot, storage for kites, puzzles, paint, defunct pillows, lawn chairs, and Christmas decorations, revealed to me its true purpose.  I rolled up my sleeves.

Where to begin?  First came organization of the back shelves, which included large piles for both Goodwill and the trash, along with condensation of Christmas decorations.  Curtains were hung over the shelves, and the much needed deep cleaning began.  A good bit of elbow grease and five tubes of caulk later, it was painting time.  I chose a very pale yellow green for it all, but it was too much.  Toning it down was as easy as painting the ceiling, door and window trim white (with the palest ever peachy/pink tint).

Now for the fun parts.  For several days I found and added treasures to enhance my space.  It was as I hung my window treatment that I realized this room was originally supposed to be a bathroom.  Why else would it have an opaque bathroom-sized window?  I smiled as I wondered and whispered, “God, I think you stopped the bathroom construction because you thought, ‘Someday Bev will need a prayer room.’”

Finally, after about a week’s work, I sat down to engage.  The first day I got a straight-from-Heaven word.  I’d been praying about certain people, with a troubled and weary heart, and I asked God for “a word”.  I randomly opened the Bible to Jeremiah where my eyes went directly to a verse that emphatically answered my heart’s cry.

Day Two I got another powerful word, which developed during the next several hours and into the following day, and it set me free from a thirteen-year relationship struggle.

On the third day I filled my journal, writing as quickly as possible so as not to forget anything, with new and freeing revelations.  Since then I wander into my Prayer Closet early and late, as well as between times.  I enter knowing I have a need of something, and I come out with something to meet the needs of others.  Sometimes meeting the needs of those who love me most is just a matter of getting my joy back, and passing it on with a smile.

Pehaps you’re wondering whatever happened to the closet in the foyer, and what did I do with my linens, ironing board, etc?  The foyer closet is now my sewing station.  The ironing board and iron rest in my bedroom closet.  This is very handy for John and me, as we can step right out of the bathroom, do our ironing, and dress right then and there (I haven’t quite worked out that wrapping station bit, but I will, and quite likely as I’m sitting and dreaming in my lovely new Prayer Closet).  As to the linens, I have a new and improved setup.  It’s two cleared shelves in the utility room (they were in great need of clearing) and I had the most fun and felt ever so elegant and superior throwing out ratty linens, and folding the remaining items with perfect symmetry.

Symmetry.  That’s the word for what a prayer closet can do to your spiritual life.  Plus, it’s just so much fun!

Your Spiritual Authority Can Kiss My Sweet Patooty!

My beloved friend and several of her friends meet weekly and walk the streets of their town praying for the city, the businesses, and the people of the city.  They pray prosperity, freedom, healing – blessing.

I’ve known my friend for 25 years and blessing is all she is, it’s who she is.  So, when the church “leadership” told the group they can no longer do this (don’t want to offend anyone, blah, blah, blah), she was grieved to the bottom of her very dear heart.

She could hardly talk for crying as she told me about it.  “They’re so deceived.  They’ve built a kingdom and they’re losing The Kingdom.”

How often it happens.  A young whippersnapper gets a piece of paper from a Bible College and now he has “spiritual authority.”  What, I wonder, is a more  sure and certain indicator that Satan is at work than when people start trying to control other people?  

I know what.  It’s when people act like sheeple and say, “Oh, OK then.  I know we were led by the Holy Spirit to do this.  I know we’re blessing people.  But since you, Oh Great and Mighty Pastor Person, say we must not pray, we won’t pray,.  After all, spiritual authority and all . . . .”

Not my friend and her buds.  They, unlike their “leaders” will not be destroyed for a lack of knowledge (See Hosea 4:6).  They know what Jesus taught about prayer, and what both the Old and New Testaments teach about prayer.  They will not answer evil orders with the evil of fear and cowardice.

Daniel 3:18 tells of Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego’s response to evil orders:  “But if not, let it be known to you, O king, that we do not serve your gods, nor will we worship the gold image which you have set up.”

Wolves in sheep’s clothing, folks.  Beware.  “But there were also false prophets among the people, even as there will be false teachers among you, who will secretly bring in destructive heresies, even denying the Lord who bought them, and bring on themselves swift destruction.  And many will follow their destructive ways, because of whom the way of truth will be blasphemed.” – II Peter 2:1-2
And remember Joshua 24:15 :  ““And if it seems evil to you to serve the LORD, choose for yourselves this day whom you will serve, whether the gods which your fathers served that were on the other side of the River, or the gods of the Amorites, in whose land you dwell. But as for me and my house, we will serve the LORD.”
So there.
By the way, John Parker will be teaching on the getting of knowledge, the kind that will save us from this kind of deception, next Wednesday, November 6, at 8:00 am on The Homefront Show.  
Join us at 1360 am – http://1360khnc.com/ and please tell a friend Thanks so much.
P.S.  John and I just prayed for this church, that they be free from the root cause of the need to control –  FEAR.  Amen and amen.  So let it be so.