Prayers for Families (1/17/2019)

At Thanksgiving, we love to see those advertisements with a happy family sitting around a big table enjoying their turkey feast and fellowshipping with each other. This is a part of our American tradition where families love to get together, especially during the holidays.

But what about dysfunctional families?

A friend recalls his childhood family experiences with horror. His mom adored his older brother, but from his earliest years onward, he can only remember his mom’s contempt for him. She would punish him for the smallest infractions by spanking him always hard enough to make him cry. Then she would continue spanking him until he would quit crying. A no-win situation for a four or five year old child.

“You will never amount to anything in your life!” his mom proclaimed to him over and over again.

And guess what?

His brother grew up to be a wealthy businessman, but my friend was always in trouble. First, in elementary school and then later on as a juvenile delinquent. At 18 years of age, my friend forged a check for ten dollars. The judge sentenced him to ten years in prison for his crime.

His mom never once wrote him a letter or visited him while he was in prison.

When I first met my friend, he was thirty-five years old and had spent half his life in prison. He had become a Christian, had joined a church once, had been on fire for the Lord, but the church had treated him poorly. So, as you can imagine, my friend had trust issues.

I prayed over him once and had a quick vision. In it, I saw him sitting on a cot in a prison cell. He was weeping buckets of tears as he faced a brick wall. The vision panned outward, revealing that the prison door was wide open. All he had to do was stand up, turn around and walk out the door to his freedom.

To this day, my friend is still sitting in bondage to his childhood past.

This is an extreme example, but there are thousands of others that are much, much worse.

My prayer today:

Lord, send Your Spirit to bring Good News to families and their members, to proclaim liberty to any captives, to open blind eyes and free those who might be suffering from ill treatment by their families. (Based on Luke 4:18)

Join with me on Thursdays to fast and pray for our families.

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Filed under Christianity, Prophecy, America, Prayer, spiritual warfare, Fasting, Families

Politicians, False Prophets and Jesus (Part 5)

 

Global Warming

As a reminder: let’s look once again at what God said to the prophet Isaiah –

Declaring the end from the beginning, and from ancient times things that are not yet done, saying, “My counsel shall stand, and I will do all My pleasure” (Isaiah 46:10 NKJV)

These words were so important that He repeated them here and here.

Thus, if God was able to look into the future when He set the foundations of the earth, do you really think He would have given humans enough power – good or bad – to destroy the earth? Is the One who fixed the stars, sun and moon in the heavens and also created the earth and all of its organisms so naive to overlook any important point like this?

Of course not!

From the Book of Genesis to the Book of Revelation, only Joshua, Elijah and Jesus have affected climate conditions so far.

Joshua asked God to have the sun and moon stand still so he could finish his nation’s battle with the Amorites.

And there has been no day like that, before it or after it, that the LORD heeded the voice of a man; for the LORD fought for Israel. (Joshua 10:14)

Elijah walked into King Ahab’s court and said, “As the Lord God of Israel lives, there shall be no rain or dew in Israel for the next few years unless I give it the word.”

Elijah was a man with a nature like ours, and he prayed earnestly that it would not rain…And he prayed again and the heaven gave rain, and the earth produced its fruit. (James 5:17-18)

Jesus and His disciples sailed in a fishing boat across the Sea of Galilee to the opposite side. Jesus fell asleep. A massive tempest arose, causing large waves to wash over the boat. The disciples feared for their lives and awakened Him. Jesus stood up and rebuked the wind and waves. The storm immediately ceased and the sea was calm.

Jesus looked at them and said, “Where is your faith?”

And they feared exceedingly, and said to one another, “Who can this be, that even the wind and the sea obey Him!” (Mark 4:41)

Now, in the end-times, the two witnesses who will prophesy for one thousand two hundred and sixty days just before Jesus returns will be able to control some climate conditions.

The two witnesses have power to shut heaven, so that no rain falls in the days of their prophecy… (Revelation

Yes, mankind’s sins have caused droughts and climate problems over a single nation, but it has not been a global phenomenon since the great flood nor will it be again until God cleanses the earth with fire.

So, what’s the real problem with global warming?

(Continued in Part 5…but if you want to read all of the parts to date, you can go here.)

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Filed under America, Calamities, Christianity, Climate Change, End-Times, Global Warming, Prayer, Prophecy

Prayers for California to Wake Up (1/15/2019)

 

Does anyone remember Azam Amir Kasav? Maybe this photo will help:

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Kasav was one of ten Pakistani terrorists who stormed buildings and hotels in Mumbai and slaughtered 164 innocent people in November 26-29, 2008. Twenty-one year old Kasav was the only one captured alive.

The ten terrorists trained for months, learning how to use high-tech rifles, bombs and grenades, gobbling steroids to buff up their bodies, studying maps of Mumbai and the buildings they would attack and dedicating themselves to kill until their dying breaths. Their goal was to slaughter 5,000 people.

Azam Amir Kasav was found guilty and executed in 2012.

Wake up California!

Do we possibly think this type of attack can’t happen in California? Have politicians so hoodwinked us with their repeated spewings about the dangers of global warming claptrap that we actually trust these political shysters with our families’ lives? Are there terrorists training right now to attack San Diego or Los Angeles or San Francisco or other cities in our state? What can we do?

My prayer today:

Lord, blow a trumpet in California, sound an alarm, call the church to turn to You with all of our hearts, with fasting, weeping and mourning, to rend our hearts before You in hopes that You will show us mercy, even though we deserve Your judgment. (Based on Joel 2)

Join with me on Tuesdays to fast and pray for California and the West Coast.

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Death Stared Me in the Eyes this Morning

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My death is not something I ever worry about. As far as I’m concerned, it will be just another date in my life, much like a wedding anniversary, birthdays or whatever dates seem important right now. Nothing more. Nothing less.

My thinking on this is directly related to  the Lord rescuing me from committing suicide on May 20, 1985. That’s 12,292 days ago, almost thirty-four years now.

Since then, I’ve gone through miles of rough roads, quicksand pits and dead-ends. Part of my life’s resume includes a divorce, remarriage, working at dozens of minimum wage jobs, being fired four times, moving more than thirty-four times to nine different states and eighteen different cities, watching my dreams and hopes smashed to pieces so many times I’ve lost track, going through dumpsters and countless other shipwrecks.

A woman prophesied twenty-three years ago: “Larry, the reason you are going through so many trials is that the Lord wants to destroy your pride. He wants all of it gone so He can use you.”

Many times, I’ve cried out, “Lord, have you squeezed enough pride out of me yet?”

Not once has the Lord replied to this question, but my guess is that this will be an ongoing process for the rest of my life.

What about death staring me in the eyes?

It dawned on me this morning that I’m seventy-two years old and haven’t done much for the Lord. Oh, I’ve written a few things and patted some people on the back along the way, but that’s the least I should have done with the heavy dose of grace the Lord has extended to me.

Being honest with myself, it appears I have only works of wood, hay and stubble built on the foundation the Lord has laid in my life. All of these will quickly be burned up when I face Jesus at the Judgment Seat of Christ. And I’ll be left with a scorch mark on the ground as an eternal remembrance of my earthly ministry for Jesus.

It turns out the life expectancy for a seventy-two year old man is 12.75 years. So, if that’s the case and if I really want some eternal rewards, then I had better get my act together today.

And just as each person is destined to die once and after that comes judgment (Hebrews 9:27

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Does Jesus Really Delight in Us?

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David was in his early 20s when he fled to the wilderness to escape from King Saul. His parents, four hundred men and eventually his wife, Abigail joined him there.

His adversary, King Saul, handpicked three thousand warriors to hunt David down, hoping to kill him. This kept David looking over his shoulder for seven years, never allowing him a moment’s rest, day or night.

When David moved his parents to safety in Moab, the prophet Gad came to him there and said, “David, you can’t stay here, you have to go back to Judah.”

Wait a second!

God – who loved David – wanted him to continue in his life-threatening trial?

YES!

Why?

You see, it was this agonizing, painful, fearful trial that God used to change David into the man who would eventually become the King of Israel, a noted psalmist and an encouragement for future believers like you and me. Look at the words he wrote in Psalm 23:

Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death,
I will fear no evil;
For You are with me… (Psalm 23:4)

David lived these words for seven years while King Saul hunted him down.

But even David, who had such great revelations about the heart of the Father,  could only handle so much stress. He ended up rebelling against the prophetic word spoken to him by Gad and spending his last sixteen months of the trial in Gath. He stayed there until King Saul was killed.

What did the back-slidden rebel David say was the reason that God delivered him from King Saul?

He rescued me because He was pleased with me and delighted in me. (Psalm 18:19 AMP)

Hey, most of us are going through seemingly endless trials right now. Some of the time, we are walking in faith and victory, but  during others, we may be standing on the edge of a cliff, thinking about jumping off and quitting altogether.

Yet, no matter where we are right now, let’s remember this: if the Lord delighted in a back-slidden David, He delights in us.

Why?

Because we are His beloved.

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Filed under Christianity, Encouragement, Forgiveness, jesus, Kingdom of God, Prophecy, spiritual warfare

Do Our Personal Sins Hurt Our Neighbors? (Part 1)

I recently saw an interesting meme on a Facebook’s friend’s timeline, promoting pro-choice and abortion:

“This isn’t about abortion. It’s about people having options, and everyone else minding his own business. If it does not affect you directly, it’s not your business.”

The meme’s words caused me to ask myself, “Do my personal sins affect my neighbors’ lives?”

Let’s begin seeking answers to this question by looking at the various types of sin in the Bible.

Keeping mercy for thousands, forgiving iniquity and transgression and sin, by no means clearing the guilty, visiting the iniquity of the fathers upon the children and the children’s children to the third and the fourth generation. (Exodus 34:7)

The Bible separates sin into three specific types: sin, transgression and iniquity.

Although the word sin can be used as a generic catchall word for all three types, its biblical definition really means “missing the mark,” as an archer’s arrow misses its target.

For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God. (Romans 3:23)

Basic sin is disobedience to God’s commands and His word, but usually without willful intent. Examples of sin: losing your temper with your spouse, getting caught up in gossip with your neighbor, exaggerating your importance at work to a new employee and so forth.

All basic sins can easily be reconciled by asking forgiveness of the Lord and if needed, the person involved.

The word transgression means revolt or rebellion and is willful disobedience of God’s commands.                       

And Adam was not deceived, but the woman being deceived, fell into transgression (1Timothy 2:14)

Eve knew that God had commanded them not to eat the fruit of the tree of good and evil, but she rebelled and did it anyway. As with all acts of rebellion, Eve suffered consequences for her transgression.

Truthfully, we all have transgressed at different times in our Christian journeys and can probably give interesting testimonies about the consequences we suffered. But as with sin, transgression simply requires us to ask forgiveness of the Lord and anybody involved. Then, we need to change our ways and not continue in the transgression.

Yet, continuing in a transgression without repentance eventually leads to iniquity. The word iniquity means depravity (evil perverseness or moral corruption) and always carries within it the hatred of God and His ways.

Iniquity is not always a voluntary disobedience to the commands of God, like transgression is, but instead, it may be more of a second nature sin. It could be a demonic stronghold within the individual which was passed on through his ancestral lineage or through rape or it could be that the individual surrendered himself to an evil principality over a region.

The iniquities of the wicked ensnare him, and he is held fast in the cords of his sin. (Proverbs 5:22 ESV)

Ridding oneself of iniquity is not as easy as it is for sins or transgressions. Because it is intertwined with the individual’s personality and attitudes, it requires acceptance of truth, God’s mercy and the fear of the Lord to set an individual free. This usually needs a deliverance move by the Spirit of God upon the people.

…For I, the LORD your God, am a jealous God, visiting [punishing] the iniquity of the fathers upon the children to the third and fourth generations of those who hate Me. (Deuteronomy 5:9)

Iniquities are not committed in spiritual vacuums. They are committed before the throne of God and cry out to the Judge to be avenged.

(Continued in Part 2)

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Prayers for Families (1/10/2019)

There was a time when I thought that if I ever got my finances in shape, my health issues under control, my relationships all healed, my sin problems handled and my spiritual life raised to a higher level, I would do amazing things for God.

My focus was spent on reigning over these five areas of my life. But guess what?

No matter how hard I tried, there were always one or two of these five areas that were shipwrecked at any given time. My frustrations agreed with the Apostle Paul when he wrote: “O wretched man that I am! Who will deliver me from this body of death?”

It took a few years, but I finally decided to check out how Jesus handled stressful circumstances.

Then Jesus said, “Father, forgive them, for they do not know what they do.” And they divided His garments and cast lots. (Luke 23:34)

Then the thief said to Jesus, “Lord, remember me when You come into Your kingdom.” And Jesus said to him, “Assuredly, I say to you, today you will be with Me in Paradise.” (Luke 23:42-43)

When Jesus therefore saw His mother, and the disciple whom He loved standing by, He said to His mother, “Woman, behold your son!” Then He said to the disciple, “Behold your mother!” And from that hour that disciple took her to his own home. (John 19:26-27)

Jesus on the cross, which had to be His worse time of stress, did not consider His painful circumstances, but cared about others more than Himself. He was a servant to the end and trusted that His Father would deliver Him out of His troubles.

A light turned on inside me when I saw this and thought: “If it worked for Jesus, it will work for me.”

Today, I spend very little time praying for my own issues and most of my time praying for others. It’s not that my problems aren’t big because like yours, they are, but I want to please Him, the One who with just a blink of His eye can turn all of my problems around in a nanosecond.

Okay, for the next few weeks, I plan on praying for families. If yours are like mine, then there are sick members, unsaved ones, troubled marriages and more. If you can, join me.

My prayer today:

Lord, stir up our love for our family members so that we are willing to lay our lives down for them, whether it’s in prayer, fasting or taking a bullet for them. And as You work Your love in us for them, I remind You that Your Word says, “Love never fails.” (Based on 1 Corinthians 13)

Join with me on Thursdays to fast and pray for our families.

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