Friday, October 30, 2015

A Time to Weep and A Time to Fight

“Encourage the exhausted, and strength the feeble.  Say to those with anxious heart, take courage, fear not.  Behold, your God will come, with vengeance.  The recompense of God will come.  But He will save you,” (Isa. 35:3-4).

Hey Gang:   We All Need a Word from God to See US Through Perilous Times.   I find it absolutely amazing that, as the world is being shaken to its very core, people are turning their backs on God in droves.  I wonder why every Pastor in our land is not shouting from the roof tops of their churches that there is a better way; that there is a God in heaven who stands at the door of every heart asking politely to come in and bring “The Spirit of love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control into every person’s life.

I live in a small town and we have a small town newspaper.  This morning the front page informed me that two people were arrested for possession of and selling drugs, the police are looking for information on any one who might have information on several burglaries, and the trial of a young person who is accused of child molestation was turned over to the jury. 

On page two there was an article pertaining to an atheist organization seeking to make a police department remove “In God We Trust” from the backs of their cruisers and their other attempts to make colleges and universities cease from allowing chaplains and coaches to pray with their teams.

A few weeks ago we had yet another tragedy in one of our schools that has removed prayer and reading of the God’s words of peace and love and even forgiveness from their schools.  The very sick individual, before killing nine students, asked them if they were Christians.  Those who answered “yes”, were shot in the head and those who said “no” were shot in the leg. 

We add this catastrophic event to the growing list of sick folks that believe killing will fill that vacuum that exists in their chest cavity.  One person asked the question, “Why would God allow that to happen?”  Another answered, “Don’t blame God, He is not allowed in our schools anymore.

As a child in elementary school, we began each day with a ritual that included, the Pledge of Alliance to our country, a portion of Scripture and the Lord’s Prayer.  We allow no such rituals in our government funded schools today.  We do not want to make any of our students uncomfortable.   I wonder, was anyone was uncomfortable when the very sick person asked the students if they were Christians before he shot them? 

 I wonder how many youngsters, that have chosen the wrong paths of life, would have chosen the right paths of life if the Word had been planted in their hearts, in their elementary school years,  and they had learned that there was a God who listened for and answered their prayers, and America was truly the ‘home of the free and the brave’. 

Well, enough venting for the day.  The title of this epistle is a Time to Weep and a Time to Fight.  I am saddened by the rapid road to decay our nation has taken, but I am even more saddened that I do not hear more voices in the wilderness shouting “Enough, enough, it is time for God’s people to don their armor, fill their lamps with oil and come out fighting.”  I would remiss if I did not mention that Franklin Graham will soon begin his visitation to every state in our union to alert those who are interested in the dangers that face our nation.    You might want to consider signing up to support him in prayer both for the Word he is  about to share, and for safety for he and his entourage.   

Check  Sat Oct 31 for information of how to sign up and the wording of the pledge.



Wednesday, October 28, 2015

God Wants to Do Something Special Through You Today!

“You will know them by their fruits…..So every good tree bears good fruit, but a bad tree bears no fruit.  A good tree cannot produce bad fruit, nor can a bad tree produce good fruit.  Every tree that does not bear good fruit is cut down and thrown into the fire. So then, you will know them by their fruits” (Matt. 7:16-20).

Hey Gang:  Our Sunday School Teacher began his lessons by showing us a drawing of how folks grow in doctrine.  Kind of like the question, “How does one eat a fifty-pound piece of Swiss cheese? One bite at a time!  His point: learning doctrine, or anything else for that matter, is a growth process where we progress up the ladder to the pinnacle of understanding as we learn about or experience the various attributes of the doctrine.

Years ago I was priviledged to sit under the teaching of an old country preacher by the name of Judson Cornwall.   On that particular night he was teaching about growth and commitment and used an analogy that has stuck in my brain ever since.  He said: “For many folks, growth in the Body of Christ is seen as climbing a tree; when one reaches the first limb, they settle in and become comfortable. Believing this is the greatest place in God’s Kingdom, they plan to just stay here and enjoy the security and comfort.

But, suddenly God shows up with His chainsaw and lops off the limb requiring the comfort- seeker to move to a higher limb.  Moving was not to his liking and moved him out of his comfort zone, but he soon settles in and once gain relaxes into his comfort zone.  And then one day God shows up with His chainsaw and lops off this limb requiring him to repeat the process of moving once again. 

The point Judson was making is that we encounter circumstances in our lives, much like the stepping stone chart in our Sunday School Class, that force us out of our comfort zones, but there is always two exits from the fallen limbs – the narrow gate or the very wide gate.  It is easy just to slip across to the new limb without using much of our God given abilities and settle into the same level of “no progress”, as the place we were on, or we can see that God has something very special in mind for us.

One of my most effective teaching tools, when working with the Village young people, was a book titled Holes in Time by Frank Constantino.  Frank was, what was termed, a very bad “motor scooter” in the incarceration business.  He was totally isolated from the general prison population and allowed out of his cell only one hour a day for exercise. The judicial system had ‘thrown the book at him” and there was little chance he would ever see the outside world again.

How many know the world’s ways and God’s ways are vastly different?  And, how many know that God can do a mighty rebuilding job in very rapid fashion, even with the toughest motor scooters.  Frank was held in a cell that had only one small window in the door that allowed the guards to check him on an hourly basis. 

One night, in the wee hours of the morning, suddenly Frank’s cell was filled with a bright – blinding light - but the light in his cell was not lite nor was there light coming in through his door window.   After several minutes the light began to dim and Frank went back to bed; but as soon as he pulled the cover up, a voice spoke, “Frank, I have a task for you that is not being completed because you are here wasting away.  You are leaving “Holes in Time”. 

The short version to the story: Frank gave his heart to Jesus that night and within several years was released from prison but spent most of his life in the prisons of Georgia ministering to the cons in the various prisons. 

Soooo, my friends, Does God need to turn the lights on your bedroom tonight and remind you that before time began He programmed you to be a witness for Him?  Are you leaving Holes in Time? 



Monday, October 26, 2015

Not My WIll, Lord!

 “For you have need of endurance so that when you have done the will of God, you may receive what was promised.  For yet in a very little while, He who is coming will come, and will not delay” (Hebrews 10:36:37).

Hey Gang:  I have heard it said that money is not everything, it just buys everything!  To that I say “balderdash!”.  When I graduated from college I thought my next step to fame was to get a Master’s degree- more head knowledge so that I could climb the ladder of what society determined was success.  

That was my idea, but God had a vastly different plan in mind; His intention was to increase my head knowledge- but He had a vastly different agenda for completing that task then I had.

At that point in my life I had a far different set of agendas than climbing the ladder of success - their names - Michael, Cathey, Marjorie and David.  Increased head knowledge was on the list, but the priorities that topped the list were food, shelter, and all the necessary things needed to provide for my family

As you might guess, the top rung on the list was “find a job – immediately, if not sooner.   I learned there was a need for counselors at the local detention facility and immediately applied for a job.  I completed my paper work in the morning that day, was interviewed in the afternoon and assigned to an observation shift that night.  On the following day I was given a set of keys and assigned to South Side, the areas of the detention facility that housed those who had committed class one felonies.  And my education began!

It did not take me long to come to the realization that I did not want to spend the rest of my life as a counselor in a juvenile detention home, but as I think back on that experience today I realize God had placed me in a ‘school of higher learning’ preparing me for what He had in mind for me at the end of that apprenticeship. 
Now most folks would agree that my professors were anything but qualified to be educators.  There was Teddy - rip off artist; Tommy and John - experts in breaking entering; a few car thief’s along the way; and even a murderer or two mixed in.  In the next three years I learned far more about human relationships and the deep hurts and frustrations of those who entered my section.

 They taught me that they were more than numbers on a case file, and the thing they wanted most was a Mom and Dad who lived together with them in a home filled with love and commitment to each other. They taught me the mundane things that were important to them but I learned the one thing that would break a hole in the shell that they had built up around them was my attention mixed in with an “I understand and forgive” passion.  

Soooo, after several career moves and changes of venue I adopted a motto for my life “Don’t Get Too Comfortable For You May Block What God Has in Mind For You!”  To that I would add: “No matter how mundane you may think your job, or even your life is, remember God is not finished with you yet. When the day comes that you stand before God to give an account of what you did with His Son Jesus, His interest will not be how much money you had in the bank or how high you climbed on the corporate ladder.  Jesus said “There is no great love than to lay down your life for another.

**** New Post Tues Oct 27th on


Friday, October 23, 2015

Seeds of a Miracle

“Therefore is anyone is in Christ, he is a new creature; he old things passed away; behold new things have come” (2 Cor. 54:17).

Hey Gang:  His name was Sandy, he was twelve years old, violent, and his heart was filled with hatred.  He was locked away from society because he had taken his hatred out on several children smaller than he, and had vowed he would never change.  A question I have asked many times in my tenure of working with kids with broken lives is “How Can That Happen Lord?”

And then I found out!  Sandy became a project for me in the six weeks he was under my care.  I wanted to find out how a twelve-year-old child could be so filled with rage.  In my first conversations his responses were filled with curse words and venom about everybody that had crossed his path in his short tenure on this earth.  My prayer, in my time with Sandy, was a simple, ”HELP Lord”. “Put your words in my mouth that will penetrate the shell that keeps this young lad in bondage.

Sandy could tell me every time he had been beaten, every time he had been locked in his room for days at a time, every time his dad had come home drunk and beat he and his mother.  Each and every incident was filed away in the recesses of his brain. 

Sandy taught me a tremendous lesson:  if I was willing, he, too, was willing but I had to prove how deeply I was willing.  The night before Sandy was to be picked up by the bus that would deliver him to a facility where he would remain until his eighteenth birthday, we had our last time together. I saw in Sandy’s eyes something that I had not seen before.  A tear? No, but a softening of his eyes.  It was that night that Sandy taught me, “If I was willing” - God would work through me to plant a seed of hope in the life of a twelve year old who had not hope.

The Bible is filled with promises that God wants to give to his children.  Faith is the ingredient that puts these promises into action in our lives, and hope anticipates the fulfillment of His promises.  I also learned that I am not a harvester, but only a seed-planter; the salt that provides the savor of my planting is patience.  I learned that “Thy will be done” is not just so many words but a principle that give us the power to be a seed planter.

Seeds were planted in those conversations with a twelve-year old who had no hope.  I left California shortly after my time with Sandy, so have no idea if my seed planting resulted in long term good fruit.  But this I know, seeds were planted and will be harvested when Father God says, this is the right moment. 

Sooooo, my friends and neighbors, let me share a principle that became the backbone of everything I did, said, and taught to the thousands of children, who had little or no hope, and  passed through my life.  Paul gave us the principle when he wrote, “Be not deceived, God is not mocked; for whatever a man sows, this he will also reap” (Gal 6:7).

Luke agreed with Paul and gave us the trigger for the principle when he wrote, “Give, and it will be given to you…that it is your standard of measure that will be measured back to you” (Luke 6:38).  Matthew said, it makes a difference where you sow, some seeds lands on thorny ground, some in rocky ground, some fell by the road side but some on good soil” (Matt. 13:3-9).  Matthew also said, “We are going to reap more than we sow” (Matt. 13:8).    Good seeds – bad seeds!  You decide!

Paul gives us the bottom line of the Seed Planting Principle, “if you sow sparingly, you will reap sparingly”   An old country preacher once said, “We choose whether we will be porch box sowers or sow in thousands of acres sowers.  Paul said, “Each must do just as he has purposed in his heart….for God loves cheerful giver”. 

And now for the promise for those who understand and apply the principle “And God is able to make all grace about to you, so that always having all sufficiency in everything, you may have an abundance for every good deed” (2 Cor. 9:8). 

Time to go and find someone I can plant a seed into.  Why don’t you come along?

Blessings,New post Sat. Oct 24  on


Wednesday, October 21, 2015

In Total Control a 39Pounds, YUK, Not God's Design

God’s Power Principle for Today: “My son, observe the commandment of your father and do not forsake the teaching of your mother; Bind them continually on your heart; Tie them around your neck” (Proverbs 6:20).

Hey Gang:  Remember the little squeezer that was a speeding bullet in the super market, running to hide from his mom -until the meat cutter came out of the freezer with full gear on including a face mask.  One could hear the squeal when he applied his brakes and reversed course to find mom.  The next time I saw him he was securely vice-gripped to his mom. 

I bring up that story again because I was privileged to see a repeat performance of a 39 pounder wrapping his mother around his chubby little paws.  A different mom and child,  a different supermarket in a different city, but the same results.

The screams came from three lanes over- in the snack food aisle.  You know the one where the potato chips, cookies, pretzels and candy are stacked to entice you to blow your diet. By the times I got there Dennis had extricated himself from the shopping cart and was standing up where he had full freedom to use his lungs to make his point.

 With angry tears streaming out of squinty eyes, the command was clear and very loud - “Gimme it!”  Mom looked my way, and with embarrassment and a haggard, worn down look, gave into the tyrant in her shopping cart and handed him a ten pound (maybe exaggerated) Baby Ruth Candy bar. 

I think God taped me on the shoulder and said, “Do you remember that kid?  You should because he looks a lot like you”.  There have been many times when I have said to God, Why can’t I have it?”  And there are times when He gave me what I wanted, not because I wore Him down but rather to teach me a lesson I needed to learn.

Arthur Ashe paraphrased James 1:5 to his daughter when he said, “Ask God for the wisdom to know what is right, what God wants done, and the will to do it”.  That is the kind of sincere prayer that God wants to hear from His children.  If God doesn’t give us what we ask for, we can be sure that He has something far better for us.

Soooo, be careful when you are in a “gimmie” mode; some answered prayers turnout to be a trip through the wilderness.  During my working years as President of Eagle Village, a treatment center for children with behavior problems, I often wanted to have a card printed for such occasions mentioned above.  A card I could give to frazzled mothers -for that day when the 39-pounder suddenly becomes a 180-pounder who wants the family car rather than the 10 pound Baby Ruth Bar!




Monday, October 19, 2015

Have You Considered Ducks?

“These things I have spoken to you, so that in Me you may have peace.  In the world you have tribulation, but take courage; I have overcome the world.” (John 16:33)
Hey Gang:  I ran into this neat little ditty that I thought you might enjoy.  It seems that a gent rented a cottage with a large light and airy cellar.  It was blessed to have a stream run by and an abundance of beautiful shade trees surrounded the house.  For five years he enjoyed the many advantages of the place and gladly paid the modest rent the landlord required.

He swam and fished in the brook, and rested under the beautiful shade trees. (I have been looking for a place like that for years)  The one day the stream overflowed its banks.  The basement was flooded, and a dozen chickens, he had kept there, were all downed.

Suddenly he forgot the past blessings and pleasures he had enjoyed.   All was gloom because of the temporary misfortune.  So he rushed off to the landlord. “I’ve come to notify you that I’m moving out,” he said.  Surprised, the land Lord asked, “But why?  I thought you’ve been happy here these past five years.” 

“Yes,” replied the tenant, “but it’s different now; the river overflowed and all my hens are downed.”  The landlord’s answer completely disarmed the grumbler.  He said, “Next time. Why don’t you try ducks!”

Amusing? Yes, but is there not a story tucked away in this lesson?  Five years of enjoyment forgotten because of a few drowned hens!   It reminded me of a stage play that we have seen titled Joshua for President.  The interviewer learned that Joshua’s young daughter had been killed when a careless driver over ran their horse cart and asked him how come he was not bitter against God for that.

He responded “Oh, I surely had thoughts about that, but then I reviewed all of the things that God has done for me in my lifetime.  When I remembered all of the blessings He has given to me and my bride, even the daughter who we loved and enjoyed this past eight years but lost.  How could I blame Him for this tragic event in my life?”

Have you had recent disappointments?   Have you been afflicted with a lingering illness, of suffered the loss of a family member or loved one?  Is there something lingering in your mind that holds you in bondage?  Have you put the former blessings that God has given you on the back burner and placed your attention of the blackness that you are suffering?  Jesus had an antidote for that: “Be of good cheer I have overcome the world.” (John 16:33)

When asked how he could forgive the driver who killed his daughter and the injuries to others in his family Josiah’s answer was one that does not compute in the hearts of many folks today, He said, “I made a decision that bitterness would block my relationship with my Lord.  It was an ‘act of my will’ that I would not allow the cancer of bitterness to eat at my heart, soul and mind.’ 

Soooo, my friends we live in a time when bitterness and unforgiveness have become a way of life for many people.  We are in the period of time when we are being “blitz-creeked with political junkism”; many are looking, not at the positives of a person’s life, but that one thing that can be used to destroy their integrity and credibility.   We no longer have the desire to lay down our swords and pick up plow shares and work together for making this a better world in which to live. 

Jesus, when teaching His disciples how to pray, closed with these words, “…for if you forgive others for their transgressions, your heavenly Father will also forgive you.  But if you do not forgive others, then your Father will not forgive your transgressions” (Matt. 6:14-15). Keep in mind, the same measure that you forgive others, God will forgive you!

NOTE:  New post on Tues Oct 20



Friday, October 16, 2015

I Have A Problem, continued from September 28,2015

“Behold, days are coming,” declares the Lord, When the plowman will overtake the reaper and the reaper of grapes him who sows seed; When the mountains will drip sweet wine and tall the hills will be dissolved.  Also I will restore the captivity of My people Israel, And they will rebuild the ruined cities and live in them; They will also plant vineyards and drink their wine, and make gardens and eat their fruit.  I will also plant them on their land and they will not again be rooted out from their land which I have given them.”  Says the Lord your God” (Amos 9:13-15)

Hey Gang:  It is amazing to me that so many people, not only around the world but here in our country, believe that, if suddenly “Israel” would disappear, the world’s problems would be over.  That is much like believing we never have to worry about running out of food because the moon is made of green cheese or that Elsie, the cow, jumped over the moon.  Read again the Scripture of the morning and pay special attention to verse 15 “I will plant them on their land, And they will not again be rooted out from their land.

That is not USA Today reporting, but God- who holds this world in His hands.  Do you remember that song, “He has the whole world in his hands?”  The world would have us believe that is changed now and we are the controllers of the destiny of our nation.     Did we not say that loudly and clearly when our Supreme Committee of Judges said, “Jerusalem is no long part of Israel?” Or said, “It is okay for mothers to kill the miracle of life that God has placed in their bodies?’ Or that His perfect plan for marriage is here and now null and void, his creation has a better plan?

Now getting back to my problem, I have heard many sermons on Gog and Magog as being the next big event on God’s calendar.  I bought into this theory for many years but one day as I was rereading Ezekiel’s account of what is to come, a question popped into my brain ‘ why are none of the countries that butt up against Israel mentioned in this prophecy? 

Hey, do we not feel great when someone agrees with us?  I happened to tune in on a program involving several Biblical gurus, who were discussing this very issue, included a scholar by the name of Bill Salus who published a book titled Israelestine, The Ancient Blueprints of the Future Middle East. 

His contention is there is a prerequisite battle (war) that precedes Gog-Magog, and it is described in Psalm 83.  In his research he found that all of the nations that butt up against Israel are mentioned in this passage of Scripture.  That Edom is Southern Jordan and the Palestinian refugees; Ishmaelites are Saudi Arabia; Moab is Central Jordan and Palestinian refugees; the Hagrites are Egypt; Gebal  is Northern Lebanon; Amelek is the Negev and Sinai Peninsula areas, Philistia is The Gaza Strip and Hamas; Tyre is southern Lebanon and Hezbollah and Assyria is Syria and Northern Iraq.

I find it interesting that Iran is not mentioned in this listing of enemies of Israel but can one doubt that something must happen to Iran.  If they get the bomb, which our country is doing all in its power to make happen, they have vowed they will use it on the Great Satan (the United States) and the Little Satan ()Israel.  Iran has made no bones about it, their goal is to bring back Mahdi 12, who happens to be down a well someplace.

 Time to be nervous, right?  Only if you believe that God is out to lunch.  True, Iran, number one on the terrorist hit parade, is not mentioned in Psalm 83 but Jeremiah says “No Problem”.  “The Lord said to Jeremiah the prophet concerning Elam “Behold I am going to break the bow of Elam”.  Jeremiah 49:34-39 paints us a picture of what is coming for Elam. 

It just so happens that Elam is the part of Iran where most of the Nuclear facilities are located, including their nuclear plant. It is also located in an area that is known to be one of the most seismic places in the world. 

 Soooo, friends and neighbors, in no way do I claim to be a prophet but rather a gleaner and sharer of  information.     But I am not without my opinions and even have made a prediction or two along the way.  As I was gleaning the materials pertaining to Psalm 83 and Elam, I also revisited the prerequisites that are in place when the Gog-Magog battles become reality.

 Ezekiel tells us that “That an evil plan will come into their minds that they will go up against un-walled cities” (Ezek. 38:11).  In other words. Israel will be at peace.   There is no way Israel can be at peace as long as the confederacy mentioned in Psalm 83 is in place.  The second prerequisite for Gog and Magog is the nation of Israel is very prosperous (Ezek. 38:12).   They are far from meeting this prerequisite with more than half of their population below the poverty line.  (However, recent oil discoveries in Golan may change that.)

Are you beginning to get the picture?  Not my picture, but the picture that was painted by God thousands of years ago.   If I were to set the dooms day clock today, it would be ticking toward the zero hour.  Make sure you and your loved ones are secure in the hands of the One who controls the waters.

****New Post on  Sat Oct 17



Monday, October 12, 2015

Why Pray?

God’s Power Principle For Today:  “We have not received the spirit of the world but the Spirit who is from God, that we may understand what God has freely given us”  (2 Cor. 2:1-12).   

Hey Gang:  I need to make a confession to you this morning.  I am not a very avid reader.  On my desk, as I write this epistle this morning, are four books with markers that tell me where I am in the book.  In one I am on page 32, the second 18, the third 47 and the last an amazing 123.

But I have found myself returning to a book by Dr. John DeVries, founder of Mission India, titled Why Pray; this has been a source of encouragement to me.   I have asked that question many times and, I confess, I have even stopped praying for a season because I did not think God was listening.

You see, I tended to measure the success of my prayers by what I received from them in short order.  There is an ad on Television advertising Wentworth Finance where the people are shouting “I want my money and I want it now”.  That was kind of my attitude when I went to the throne room for a specific need.  Have I had victory over that, to a degree, but I must admit the battle goes on.

But the resurgence of the Village has given me a leg up on the victory-trail over this issue.  I learned, from Dr. John, that when we have a specific need we should place it in the Father’s hand and move on.     When Cathey, my daughter, became the exulted ruler of the Village, her mom and I felt we needed to build a pyramid of prayer warriors who were willing to pray in a sacrificial way for wisdom and direction and strength and protection for her and the Village. 

Our challenge to each one, ‘If you are not willing to pray sacrificially and as Paul challenges us “without ceasing” please do not sign up to be a prayer warrior.  I believe the prayer warrior ring that surrounds the Village today is the catalyst that has produced the changes and victories that have become a wonderful testimony to God’s grace, mercy and love.  To fail to fulfill your prayer commitment is to leave a hole in the covering.  Satan dearly loves to move into those holes.

I believe one of the most overused phrases in existence today is, ”I will pray for you!”  I believe, if everyone, who at one time or another said they would pray for me, did indeed follow through and placed my needs on the refrigerator door, the bathroom mirror or the rear view mirror of their car, I could have been able to walk on water.  (Just joking of course!)

Soooo, dear friends, let me share a piece of advice I received years ago, when I confessed to a friend that I had a hard time remaining focused when I was praying.  He said, “Journal your prayers.  Not only will you remain focused but you will have a record of your prayers and can look back and see when they were fulfilled.  So, I have two recommendations to you this morning: one, if you are asking “Why Pray? I recommend you get John’s book, Why Pray; and, if you have a hard times staying focuses, try journaling your prayers for a season and see how God blesses.



Sunday, October 11, 2015

Just Rambling

Lord, I pray you will clear the clouds and send your sunshine down on this hurting world.  Did you ever feel like you wanted to be able to turn the world off, just for a little while? I mean just to go out In the middle of a meadow or under a big old oak tree, and listen to insects with their distinct language, or watch the birds zip by.  Did you ever wonder where they are going?  I think they know.
I sometimes think they are smarter than we humans for they do not get caught up in the mundane things, mundane in every way, and miss the wonderful things that God has created for our enjoyment. 

My bride and I went to a concert yesterday.  I never heard nineteen trombonist playing in perfect harmony before. I thanked Abba Father for placing this wonderful talent in the minds and hearts of the players.  Did you ever stop and praise the Lord for the gift of sound, and the gift of sight, and the gift of emotions? 

I recently read an elderly woman, who had been blind from birth, who had never seen a sunrise or sunset, never looked into the face of her husband and children, but this day would be different, God sent a blessing into her life in the form of a surgeon who opened eyes. 

The doctor had made it a practice to take the patient out on the patio of his office where the mountains stood majestically in the background, the sky beautifully blue, and the rose garden before her was splendidly arrayed in colors that only God could paint.  And the moment came. The blind folds were removed! And for the first time in her life she could see God’s creation.  Wow, how wonderfully awesome.  I wish I could have been there and seen the sparkle in her eyes.

As life’s struggles have increased and we see the earth being shaken as never before, I find myself spending more time in the Psalm’s.  I wish I would have spent more time in the Psalm’s as a child for I believe it would have made life much more beautiful in this wretched world.

When he wrote his Psalms, David was just a shepherd boy.  I learned in my travels in the Holy land that shepherd boys and girls were the bottom rung of the family totem pole.  I wonder if when God created sheep He had David in mind.  I have often prayed that the pastors of our Land would have the same love and dedication for their flocks as David had to his sheep. 

One does not think that a shepherd would have a barrel full of problems caring for sheep but I suspect maybe he did as he wrote: “Hear, O Lord, and be gracious to me; O Lord, be my helper.” You have turned for me my mourning into dancing; You have loosed my sackcloth and girded me with gladness.  That my soul may sing praise to You and not be silent, O lord my God, I will give thanks to You forever” (Psa. 30:10-12).  But I am sure he cried out to the Lord with this praise in his voice after he had done battle with the lion or the bear and even his confrontation with Goliath.

I wonder if there were days when David remembered those quiet times with his sheep after he became king.  Jesus said, “Peace I leave with you, My peace I give to you; not as the world gives do I give to you. Do not let your heart be troubled nor let it be fearful” (John 14:27).

I close this epistle with Paul’s words of encouragement:  “… if we truly believe God’s promises and appropriate it for our daily living, we will know complete and abiding peace –“The peace that surpasses all understanding” (Phil 4:7).



Blessings,   gramps

Friday, October 9, 2015

A Gigantic Step in the Fulfillment of Prophecy or a Bluff?

Not all agree on the locations of Biblical references.  This is one map to give you some perspective.

“Son of man, set your face toward Gog and the land of Magog, the prince of Rosh, Meshech and Tubal, and prophesy against him and say, “Thus says the Lord God, “Behold, I am against you, O Gog, prince of Rosh, Meshech and Tubal.  I will turn you about and put hooks into your jaws, and I will bring you out, and all your army, horses, and with buckler, all of them wielding swords” (Ezek. 38:2-4).

Hey gang:  Did you notice that Russia made yet another bold move to kick sand in the face of this once great and militarily strong nation?   President Bashar Assad yelled “help’ to the bear of the north and they responded, like right now, with air strikes under the guise of bombing the ISIS terrorists, who were moving ever closer to what is left of Assad’s kingdom.     

But they seem to have misread their maps and locations of the enemy, instead of bombing territory held by ISIS their bombs fell on the very rebels who are trying to remove Assad from power.

But, no worry, they are there primarily to supply and train those rag taggers who are fighting to drive ISIS from the land; however, one might look at their recent mission to take back Ukraine under their control to know that when it comes to Russia, their stated intent is not usually honorable.

One might suggest that sending two dozen fighter aircraft, attack helicopters, surface-to- air-missiles defense systems and hundreds of troops to its only naval facility outside the former Soviet Union, the Syrian port of Tartus, is a wee bit of overkill. Not to mention that they are now developing two new military bases to host a much more expanded presence.

As they have done in the past and in Ukraine, their rational for taking up arms in Syria is that they claim  hundreds of its citizens are in Syria helping ISIS and could return home as a threat to their country.  Russia makes no bones about it, they are bent on keeping Assad in power and expanding their role in fulfilling that mission and the area.

An hour or so before Russia’s first bombing run, a Russia general marched into the US embassy in Baghdad to give warning to the Americans to stay out of Syrian Airspace.  Thus far the Americans have chosen to ignore the threat and continue their few sorties into Syria; however, when you have two forces that hate each other the chances for a conflict lurks ever closer with each mission.

Israel is very concerned with this new escalation on the part of Russia.  They fear it will place a wedge in their ability to strike Hezbollah targets in Syria and Lebanon, who frequently use this conflict to transfer arms from Iran to their ever growing confederates located throughout the Middle East.   

Now you may not understand the ramifications of Russia’s latest move but, you do need to understand some Biblical prophecy experts believe this could be setting the stage for two important prophecies found in the Bible to be fulfilled. 

The first is found in our Scripture of the day.  In Ezekiel 38, the prophet Ezekiel warned of a future war known as the war of “Gog and Magog” in which the people of Magog and their leader Gog will lead a coalition of nations which also includes Persian/Iran to attack Israel.

It is the opinion of most Bible guru’s that Russia is the Gog referred to in Ezekiel 38.  They fit historically and geographically as the great bear from the North.  The prophecy gurus also watch with fascination as Russia returns to the Middle East, after a thirty year absence, and the positioning of its troops ever closer to Israel.  

The second prophecy is found in Isaiah 17.  Notice verse one of this passage of Scripture, “The oracle concerning Damascus.  “Behold Damascus is about to be removed from being a city and will become a fallen ruin” (also read Amos 1:3-5).

Soooo, Jesus said when the clock approaches the zero hour there will be great deception in our world.  The destruction of Damascus has always been of great interest to me.  What would cause Damascus to disappear from the face of the earth?  I believe one atomic bomb would complete the task.  And why would a nation go to that extreme to wipe out the killing fields of Syria, because, it is thought by many, that there are still many of Sadam Hussein’s chemical weapons stored in Syria and if they choose to use them on Israel, I have  no doubt Israel would bring the Sampson (Israel’s nuclear armaments) into play.

Both of these Biblical prophecies appear to have just hit the fast forward button.  But remember, “When these things begin to take place, straighten up and life your head, because your redemption is drawing near” (Luke 21:23).



Wednesday, October 7, 2015

Hey, Cheer Up - God Is Preparing to Come - Very Soon

God’s Power Principle For today:  “Behold the tabernacle of God is among men. And He will dwell among them, and they shall be His people, and God himself will be among them” (Rev. 21:3).

Hey Gang:  In this day, when it seems everything that can be shaken is being shaken so that only those things that cannot be shaken will remain, we need to keep our eyes glued to our Abba Father.  If the words through John from Jesus, in the morning Scripture, do not build a fire in the depths of your innards, you had best check yourself into the nearest emergency ward and see if your thumper is still thumping. 

Each week the Koenig report, which is a report of current and future events that are based on the prophetic word of God, Claudia Koenig begins each up date with prayer and a word from Father God.  They are always a challenge and give me a firm foundation to begin the new week. 

This week she challenged me, and I pray you, with these words, “Many times when a faraway missionary was in a time of despair, the question was asked, “What can we do?’  The answer was always, “Pray, pray, pray!”  Today, many ask, “What can we do when judgment for man’s rebellion against God comes to America and people will be in despair?”  The answer is “Pray, pray, pray!” 
As I read this, a recollection from my early years surfaced in my brain.  When I was eight years old and in the fourth grade, we began each day with the Pledge of Allegiance, several verses from the Bible and the Lord’s Prayer.  We also had a morning update on what was happening in the war zones. 

I remember that fateful day when the teacher announced that General McArthur had thrown in the towel and left the Philippines but, on his way out he made a vow to return soon, a promise he fulfilled. 

Yes, today’s news is filled with woe, woe and more woe.  One wonders if there is any wisdom in any of  the capitals of the world.  We are surely paying the Piper for the decisions to remove God from every facet of our lives. 

But!  Does it not fill your heart with joy when you read the words of the angels who were there when Jesus ascended back to the Father and took His rightful place at the right hand of God? They said,  “Why do you stand looking into the sky? This Jesus, who has been taken up from you into heaven, will come in the same way as you have watched Him go into heaven” (Acts 1:11).  

Soooo, my young buckaroos, keep your lamps trimmed and filled with oil, your Armor shined and in place (on your body) and pray, pray, pray!.  For you see, God never said the governments of the man would ever have the wisdom to repair what they break, but 2 Chronicles 7:14 gives us the promise that- If we humble ourselves before Him, pray from the depths of our souls and seek Him until we find Him, He will heal our land!.



Monday, October 5, 2015

Forgiveness - In The Same Manner!

“For if you forgive others for their transgressions, your heavenly Father will also forgive you.  But if you do not forgive others, then your Father will not forgive your transgressions” (Matt. 6:14-15).

Hey Gang:  Read it again and again and again until it sinks deep into the recesses of your heart and mind and soul.  Notice: You choose!  Will you allow God to forgive you for your transgressions by your willingness to forgive others transgressions?

In recent years I have become a word and phrase reader.  Now, I know that sounds strange but let me explain.  At 82 years of age I find it more difficult to memorize Scripture but I can research words and phrases to the point where they become engrained in my mind and heart.    As an example, the phrase “in the same measure” has become very important to me.  Jesus used this phrase several times when he wanted his kids to know we have the control of implementation of His commandments, statutes and laws. 

Note Jesus words:  “Do not judge so that you will not be judged. For in the way you judge you will be judged, and by your standard of measure, it will be measured to you.”   Luke wrote: “Give, and it will be given to you.  They will pour into your lap a good measure – pressed down, shaken together and running over. (6:38). And, “For by your standard of measure it will be measured to you in return.”  (Matthew 7:1-2).

If you could research my past and suggest to the educators, that had their opportunity to fill my head with knowledge, and ask them, “Would it be possible for this Hillbilly kid to one day write more than 720 morning messages?’ You would receive a resounding “NO WAY!” 

As I thought about the subject “forgiveness” I remembered a morning message that I wrote in the early tenure of the blogs titled, “Satan Had a Garage Sale”. My premise was that Satan offered all his hateful tools to the highest bidder.  But there were two, off to the side,  with a sign: “Not for Sale”.

When I asked why, he said because it (forgiveness) along with discouragement are my most effective tools and I would never part with them.  You see, unforgiveness and discouragement are like cancer, they eat the heart out of the person who harbors those feelings.  But, there is a great pain attached to these maladies; there is a direct relationship between our capacity to forgive others and God’s willingness to forgive us. 

We pray, “Forgive our trespasses as we forgive those who trespass against us,” but do we really want God to forgive us in the same measure that we forgive others?     There is another phrase that got my attention as I researched - “He gave them over”.  I believe this phrase is closely attached to the “in the same measure” phrase.   

In other words, forgiveness is an “act of the will” issue.  We have to look in the mirror and ask the question, “Am I so perfect that I can harbor evilness (and unforgiveness is evilness) towards another person?  Especially when we remember that God so loved each of us that He sent His only Son to provide a way for us to be freed from the bondage of our sins.  John wrote, “If someone says, ‘I love God, and hates his brother, he is a liar, for the one who does not love his brother whom he has seen, cannot love God whom he has not seen? (I John 4:20).

Sooooo,  my friends, I close with a person confession:  As a hillbilly kid transplanted from the back country of Pennsylvania to the big city, I arrived at school with a bull’s eye on my back.  I was skinny, had buck teeth, wore clothes that were not the fad of the day, and was extremely laid back. 

The local bully’s club voted me the most likely to be a good target for their animosities.   I speak of unforgiveness from a personal standpoint.   I learned at that time what true hatred was.  I don’t remember when the message got through to my heart that the person paying the Piper, for that hatreds and unforgiveness, was the person I looked at every day in the mirror

But this I do remember, when I came to the realization I could not handle that sin and turned it over to Abba Father, it was like seeing the sun for the first time in my life.  I also learned that is was a bondage that had been passed down through the generations of my father.  A bondage that I was privileged to see him delivered from.

“For if you forgive others for their transgressions, your heavenly Father will also forgive you.  But if you do not forgive others, then your Father will not forgive your transgressions” (Matt. 6:14-15).


Friday, October 2, 2015

How To Be Freed from The Wilderness

“A voice is calling, Clear the way for the Lord in the wilderness; “Make smooth in the desert a highway for or God”…”Clear the way for the Lord in the wilderness”…”Then the glory of the Lord will be revealed, And all flesh will see it together; for the mouth of the Lord has spoken” (Is. 40:3/5).

Hey Gang, I find it refreshing to stop and turn the world off and zero in on what the Holy Spirit is trying to tell me.  One of the great joys of sending out these daily messages is it keeps me focused on the wondrous road maps that I find in the Word each day.  God has been so faithful in pointing out those “pearls of great price” that He has hidden throughout His Word that we must hunt and, in hunting, we suddenly find that we have grown closer to our Shepherd.

In my many years of reaching out to hurting people, it has always amazed me that so many choose to carry their burdens alone when we have the amazing promise, “Like a Shepherd He will tend His flock, In His arm He will gather the lambs and carry them in His bosom.  He will gently lead the nursing ewes” (Is. 40:11).

I ask those who are heavy laden “Do you not know?  Have you not heard? The everlasting God, the Lord, the Creator of the ends of the earth does not become weary or tired.  His understanding is inscrutable” (Is. 40:28).  Does that not want you to sing to the Lord a new song?

But notice, Isaiah does not leave it there; he went on, “He gives strength to the weary and tired, and to him who lacks might He increases power” (v. 29).  How many out there realize that, without God’s strength and power in us, we are competing against a stacked deck.

Isaiah closes this segment with, in my humble opinion, one of the most powerful verses in the Word: “Yet those who wait for the Lord will gain new strength; They will mount up with wings like eagles, They will run and not get tired, They will walk and not become weary” (Is. 40:31). 

I find myself returning to Paul’s words in chapter four of Philippians in these days of woe; in verse four  He gives us the key to strong mental health: “Rejoice in the Lord always; again I say rejoice.”  I look at Paul’s advice here as a cleansing for the soul. 

We live in a period when God’s shaker is very active and there are few good things reported in our media but mega pieces that can lead to depression.  And why should we rejoice when the sky is falling? Again Paul gives us the good news: “I can do all things through Him who strengthens me” (vs. 13).  He follows this with a news that “My God will supply all your needs according to His riches in glory in Christ Jesus” (v. 19).

Soooo, friends and neighbors, have you taken on your new feathers that allows you to soar in the heavenlies? Or are you land locked?  Are you dependent on the one you see each morning in the mirror, or have you placed your trust in the One who “sits above the circle of the earth”…who  “reduces rulers to nothing, Who makes the judges of the earth meaningless” (Is. 40:17).  Whom will you serve this day?