Monthly Archives: April 2015

Thursday’s Prayers for America (4/30/2015)

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I don’t claim to know the answers for racial relations in America, especially in light of the riots in Baltimore and Ferguson, but I absolutely do know the One who has all of the answers. His name is Faithful and True, Alpha and Omega, the Beginning and the End, King of Kings, Lord of Lords, Prince of Peace, Wonderful Counselor, Lord God of Hosts, Lamb of God, Creator, Savior, Master, Friend, and Jesus Christ.

Today, I prayed:

Lord, forgive us Americans for thinking we can handle the racial problems in our nation with more talk, more marches, more media coverage, more sound bytes on social media, and more of everything, except more of You. Open our ears to hear what You are saying to Your church in this hour because our only hope is You.

What do you think and has the Lord spoken to you?

Join with me on Thursdays to fast and pray for America.

Click on to see MyGFA site.

Click on to see MyGFA site.

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Memories Pizza, Indiana, Christianity, And How Not to Win Spiritual Battles (Part 7)

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At one time or another, we have all heard believers described as Christ’s ambassadors. But what does the word ambassador mean?

Ambassador is the highest-ranking person who represents his or her own government while living in another country. (Merriam- Webster)

Let that definition rattle around your brains for a moment or two. It is eye-opening.

You see, you and I – as ambassadors – are the Father’s highest ranking persons of the kingdom of God here on earth. We are under the Lordship of King Jesus and empowered by the Holy Spirit. And as ambassadors of the kingdom of God, we have no authority to speak our own viewpoints to the world around us, but rather, we – as ambassadors – must speak the words of the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit because they have appointed us to act as their representatives.

Okay, are you with me so far?

Because Jesus has not returned to earth as yet, the kingdom of God is a spiritual one, living within each believer. It is filled with power and not just empty words. This kingdom is eternal and more real than the world around us, but to access the kingdom of God within us, we must do it by faith and through our relationships with the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit.

There are no shortcuts to walking in the fullness of the kingdom of God, but if we do it properly, there should be evidence for others to see:

But the Holy Spirit produces this kind of fruit in our lives: love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control. There is no law against these things! Those who belong to Christ Jesus have nailed the passions and desires of their sinful nature to his cross and crucified them there. Since we are living by the Spirit, let us follow the Spirit’s leading in every part of our lives. (Galatians 5:22-25)

How can we ever lose a spiritual battle with this type of backing?

Ah, grasshopper, God gave us minds which are either the kingdom of God’s allies or its foes.

(Continued in Part 8)

Click on to see MyGFA site.

Click on to see MyGFA site.

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Tuesday’s Prayers for Prisoners (4/28/2015)

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Each Tuesday, I pray and fast for the nations of Asia, where 4.4 billion people live. 

Why Asia?

1. 85.4% of world’s unevangelized people live in Asia. (Unevangelized means they may have heard the gospel but have no understanding on how to respond.)

2. The world’s three largest non-Christian religions – Muslim, Hindu, and Buddhists – are based in Asia.

3. Of the 37 countries of the world that are less than 10% Christian, 32 are in Asia. Of the 14 countries, that are less than 2% Christian, 12 are in Asia.

4. 85-90% of unreached people live in Asia. (Unreached means that they have never heard the name of Jesus.) (Operation World: The Definitive Prayer Guide to Every Nation)

On Sunday, a 7.8 magnitude earthquake struck Nepal with the epicenter being fifty miles northwest of  Katmandu.  Parts of India, Pakistan, Tibet, and Bangladesh also were rattled. So far, 4,600 deaths have been confirmed, with the number expected to rise over the next few days.

Around a third of Nepal’s 29 million citizens earn less than $1 per day and 38% of the population are occupied with subsistence agriculture. 75% of the population is Hindu, 16% Buddhist, and less than 3% Christian.

“Always seek out the seed of triumph in every adversity.” (Og Mandino)

Today I prayed:

Lord, I cry out for mercy for all the people of Nepal and neighboring nations whose lives are torn to pieces by this earthquake and pray that You raise up laborers to bring hope to the suffering people.

Join with me on Tuesdays to fast and pray for prisoners, according to Hebrews 13:3.

Click on to see MyGFA site.

Click on to see MyGFA site.

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Memories Pizza, Indiana, Christianity, and How Not to Win Spiritual Battles (Part 6)

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Let’s look at the kingdom of God:

Where is the Kingdom of God right now? Is it centered in the Vatican? Or in Rick Warren’s church? Or Joel Osteen’s church?

Asked by the Pharisees when the kingdom of God would come, He replied to them by saying, The kingdom of God does not come with signs to be observed or with visible display, Nor will people say, Look! Here [it is]! or, See, [it is] there! For behold, the kingdom of God is within you [in your hearts] and among you [surrounding you]. (Luke 17:20-21 Amplified Version)

The original Kingdom of God was deposited on earth in the Garden of Eden. That is where God placed the first Adam, who had a relationship with the Father, which allowed Adam to ask for anything he needed or wanted from the Father. His level of intimacy was that of a son.

The Father even told Adam he could eat from every tree in the garden, including the tree of life, so his basic needs were met. There was only one stipulation, just one law to follow: he could not eat from the tree of knowledge of good and evil.

Was the Garden of Eden a perfect place? No, absolutely not. Satan and his demonic angels had open access into the Kingdom of God and could tempt and deceive Adam and his wife, Eve.

And we all know how that story ended: with the fall of man and all of creation.

For as through the one man’s disobedience the many were made sinners, even so through the obedience of the One the many will be made righteous. (Romans 5:19)

To restore the Kingdom of God on earth, the Father had to restore man’s standing before Him. Man was a sinner and God hated sin. Thus, man’s standing had to be changed into an acceptable one before Him, or a righteous position.

The term righteous is a legal term, not a religious one, and means to position oneself rightly. Therefore, when Jesus becomes our Lord, we are made righteous before God. And our righteousness allows us to inherit the Kingdom of God.

Now consider this, okay?

Because all of creation was –and still is – fallen and groaning for its freedom, the Father could not deposit the Kingdom of God in any building, location, or territory on earth in this era.  None could ever possibly have met His holy standards of righteousness.

So, God did what looks foolish to all of mankind, He placed the Kingdom of God on earth within believers’ hearts.

Paul wrote about the treasure in earthen vessels, which parallels closely to the parable Jesus spoke:

The kingdom of heaven is like a treasure hidden in the field, which a man found and hid again; and from joy over it he goes and sells all that he has and buys that field. (Matthew 13:44)

A Garden of Eden was placed in believers’ hearts where the tree of life has blossomed into eternal life. A river flows from the throne of God to water our gardens and we can have fellowship with the Father at all times.

But in our new Kingdom of God gardens, Satan does not have access because we are sealed in Christ and protected until the day of our redemption.

(Excerpt from my book, Storming the Kingdom, an Amazon eBook.)

Thus, when people say that they want to advance the kingdom of God, it is done one person and one heart at a time.

(Continued in Part 7)

Click on to see MyGFA site.

Click on to see MyGFA site.

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Inside Israel

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Once again, it’s time to hear from our sister in Jerusalem about what she is witnessing there as a believer in Yeshua. Put your prayer shawls on and pray for Israel and Sister J. Now here she is …

May THE LORD be glorified and blessed as I greet you on this extraordinary day that yearly brings me to my knees.

“Then shall the virgin rejoice in the dance, And the young men and the old, together; For I will turn their mourning to joy, Will comfort them, And make them rejoice rather than sorrow.” (Jeremiah 31:13)

“To console those who mourn in Zion, To give them beauty for ashes, The oil of joy for mourning, The garment of praise for the spirit of heaviness; That they may be called trees of righteousness, The planting of the Lord, that He may be glorified.” (Isaiah 61:3 *also ofcourse, spoken as fulfillment by The Lord)

“For His anger is but for a moment, His favor is for life; Weeping may endure for a night, But joy comes in the morning.” Psalm 30:5 

            Yom h’zikeron, memorial day for Israel’s fallen soldiers and those killed by terror attacks is a deeply emotional day.  It touches, sadly, nearly every Israeli family personally. It is not a story or someone else’s experience, but the collective experience of a family, a nation, who sends all of it’s sons and daughters, fathers and mothers, sisters and brothers and friends off to guard one another and it’s homes within its small borders. All fight the many battles that remain in spite of high aspirations for a still elusive peace.

Amidst the battles have come the terror attacks, claiming the infants and small children and the aged who have served and survived.  Truly there is barely a family in this nation that is not carrying the burden of the violent loss of deeply loved ones.  The raw emotion is heart wrenching.

By nature and design, we are not a people ashamed or used to hiding away our hearts.  As I got on the bus to go to work this morning, I couldn’t hold back the tears as I heard the song on the radio: “Achi” – My brother. I am now able to understand the words and I almost wished that I couldn’t.  My brother.  You took my hand and with such pride and such a smile led me to my first day at school.  You watched me and side-by-side we learned.  We played together as best friends.  We told secrets and shared our room and our heart…and you were so proud to go just ahead of me to serve our country…how beautiful you were my brother…I will see you again in heaven.

The two-minute siren this morning that brought the entire nation to a standstill settled the shared mantle of grief across the nation.  That mantle was lowered with the first siren last night at 8 p.m. But this morning it actively settled across our shoulders.  Mount Hertzl cemetery, our national cemetery where our Prime Ministers, leaders and a large percentage of our soldiers are buried, is walking distance from where I live.  The streams of many thousands upon thousands who spent the day there continued all day.  Soldiers came from all over to be comforted and to comfort the mourners.

Whoever was not mourning afresh, was comforting someone who was, a relative, friend or stranger.  Young widows holding babies who would never meet their fathers joined with elderly parents bereft of children or grandchildren.  An entire country grieving over personal losses. Letters written by children or other loved ones were printed in the media.  Here is a taste:

Dear Dad,

How to sum up in a few words a Dad so strong, so great and powerful?

It’s already been a month without you.

We stayed by your side after your injury. We saw your endless struggle, and we parted from your physical being, but not from your presence. And then, when the worst happened, we joined the families of bereavement, unwillingly, but with great faith that this was G-d’s will. We chose to cope, using your beliefs. You left us no room for indecision about how to live without a father. Even without you, without discussing it with you, I know how you want us to live. You didn’t talk much, talking is Mom’s great quality, but when you spoke you were clear, focused, strong, and sent a message, which reached further than the issue in question, to future principles. We have chosen to find strengths in this difficult trial, to focus on success and not failure, to always try to keep our heads high. To keep smiling even when it is hard, and always keep a positive view, even when our hearts are aching and wounded.

Mom always says we were blessed to have lived in your shadow.

Dad, you weren’t at home much, but you were always there.

I don’t deserve concessions that my Dad is not at home, I have the positives that, even if he is not here, I should work hard, make an effort, share, give, and keep doing things for myself and for others.

Dad, you went, but you are still with us, in the little things and the great ones. You left behind many people who can testify to who you were, can support us and comfort us, hold us and remind us of you, what you contributed, and how lucky we are to be your children.

Dad, at times missing you overcomes us; we have a long way to go, for me, for Mom, brothers and friends, but the path is clear.

I promise to follow in your way; it will always guide us and give us strength; to continue the mission of leading a meaningful life. To look after Mom, Yossiel, Maor and Ami-ad. Together we will succeed, you will be proud of us from up there. I am sure you will protect us and show us the way.

My Dad, you will always be with me, no matter where you are, you are always by my side.

I’m so proud to be your daughter. Always be with us.

May your soul be bound up in the bond of eternal life.

I Love you,

Hallel

(Hallel Kachlon, aged 15, from Hadera, is the daughter of Sergeant Major Rami Kachlon, who was injured in an incident on the Gaza border during Operation Protective Edge, and died of his wounds several days later.)

And the question that I had is now answered:  HOW IN THE WORLD WILL THEY PULL IT OFF AGAIN THIS YEAR?  HOW CAN WE GO FROM MOURNING TO JOY IN A BRIEF BRIDGE? How can a ceremony, the changing of the key of the trumpet from minor to major and the raising of the flag from half mast to full, how can that stop the weeping and give hope to our broken hearts?  They did it for 66 years, but now, the 67th year, can they do it again?  Won’t the mourning be so deep that the joy won’t dawn this year?

But it DID!

And it was, again, or perhaps more so, amazing to behold this year! Yes, the mourners prayer (the Kadesh) was prayed by the most recently bereaved father with a broken and faltering voice. The last pieces were still bleeding in the aisles of the Mount Hertzl meeting place as the trumpets blew their mournful sound and then in one note changed to a major key as everyone stood.  Solemnly the flag was raised and the colors of the lights also changed and the words from Genesis began to be spoken, sung, displayed on the walls and danced to. All of this, while a scribe wrote them in a scroll and our eyes were turned to the hugeness of God’s creation and the work of His Hands.  He was declared from the beginning of the ceremony until the end tonight.  His triumph over all, built to a crescendo with a theme of HOPE dancing in and out.

Our Independence (yom h’atz’maoot) is celebrated in this way. Beauty from ashes…the oil of joy for mourning and the garment of praise for the spirit of heaviness.  Yearly 12 torches are lit, one for each tribe of Israel, chosen with a particular theme in mind and trying to represent the diversity of the population.

This year’s torch lighters represented very diverse innovators who bettered the lives of the general public and in many cases, the world.  They included Rami Levi, a very down to earth man who used to have a stall in our shuk.  It bothered him that prices were so high and that people scuffled to feed their families, so he developed the Rami Levi food chain to SERVE THE PEOPLE and it is both the least expensive, most fair, AND STILL PROSPEROUS food chain in the country. PLUS he employs Jews and Arabs, religious and non religious.

Another torch was lit by the man who developed the iron dome defense system.  Another was lit by a female Israeli Arab TV anchorwoman who has been a vanguard in anti-racism and is very brave… she even sang our national anthem tonight.

Then there was a 17 year old girl scientist who has begun a company which is pioneering brain research successfully.  AND, there is the young autistic man who started a program for mentally challenged young people to successfully volunteer for the IDF and serve the nation. This is just a sample.  Each one gave a short but very inspiring speech.  Songs, flags, presentations, a huge embrace of love infused with hope, looking up to God, with a belief in the God-Who-Sees-and-Will-Be-Seen, replacing the mantle of grief. The joy will continue (including wonderful bar-b-ques called mangle) through tomorrow evening.

Amazing!

They pulled it off!

And I think it was because they looked up.

Thank you for caring and praying.  May The Lord be KNOWN and GLORIFIED, even here among His ancient people Israel.

Lovingly,

your sis J

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Memories Pizza, Indiana, Christianity, And How Not to Win Spiritual Battles (Part 5)

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“There is no neutral ground in the universe. Every square inch, every split second is claimed by God, and counterclaimed by Satan.” (C. S. Lewis)

“We will live our entire lives behind enemy lines…” (Leonard Ravenhill)

Our American Christian mindset seldom considers that we are in a constant state of spiritual warfare between the kingdom of God and the kingdom of darkness. There are ebbs and flows in the war, but the fighting will never end until Jesus returns to earth in all of His glory. So, there are no days off or vacations for us believers because we always need to fight in some way or another against the kingdom of darkness at all times.

Let’s look at the kingdom of darkness.

Satan is the head of the kingdom of darkness. He is also the accuser of the brethren, a murderer, the father of lies with no truth in him, a thief, destroyer, tempter, ruler of this world, wicked one, Beelzebub, the ruler of demons, antichrist, the deceiver, lawless one, man of sin, son of perdition, and god of this age.

Satan’s army of underlings include evil principalities, powers, rulers of the darkness of this age, spiritual hosts of wickedness in the heavenly places, prince of the power of the air, and countless lower level demons.

The kingdom of darkness’ #1 ally on earth: our flesh.

Now the works of the flesh are evident, which are: adultery, fornication, uncleanness, lewdness, idolatry, sorcery, hatred, contentions, jealousies, outbursts of wrath, selfish ambitions, dissensions, heresies, envy, murders, drunkenness, revelries, and the like; of which I tell you beforehand, just as I also told you in time past, that those who practice such things will not inherit the kingdom of God. (Galatians 5:19-21)  

As you can easily see, the works of our flesh line up quite well with Satan and the kingdom of darkness.

So, let’s look at the kingdom of God.

(Continued in Part 6)

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Thursday’s Prayers for America (3/23/2015)

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Bill Gates, Oprah Winfrey, Donald Trump, and Mark Zuckerberg can all pick up their phones to announce a press conference and have a ballroom packed with reporters in less than three hours time. The scribes will hang on every word which comes out of their mouths, even if it’s verbal pablum.

How can they do this?

Americans equate wealth with wisdom and strength. Thus, the words of these people are considered important enough for the media to give them a platform to trumpet their words to us.

Wisdom is better than strength. Nevertheless the poor man’s wisdom is despised, and his words are not heard. (Ecclesiastes 9:16)

Today, I prayed:

Lord, I pray that You pour out Your wealth, riches, and honor on Your chosen servants so that their wisdom and knowledge can help to lead Your people through the upcoming dark days in America. (Based on 2 Chronicles 1:11-12)

What do you think and has the Lord spoken to you?

Join with me on Thursdays to fast and pray for America.

Click on to see MyGFA site.

Click on to see MyGFA site.

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