Wednesday, January 20, 2021

What are we SUPPOSE to do now?

 


As I watched President Trump say goodbye this morning, tears filled my eyes. Not because I worship a man or need to be de-programmed... but because I am so thankful for how God has used this man to protect us from evil. I read something that said, "why don't we recognize the 'good ole days' before they are over"? God was SO merciful to give us President Trump these last 4 years. He fought for life and freedom. He felt like an over-protective father figure.

As I watched Air Force One disappear in the distance, it felt like the man God had been using as a restrainer disappeared before our eyes. The floodgates of evil are now flying wide open. Christians have a bulls eye on their backs because wicked leaders are taking their seats. Their first laws being written are exposing our most vulnerable, our unborn and elderly. The enemy always attacks the most vulnerable first because he is cruel and has 3 simple goals: stealing, killing, & destroying. He always goes for the weakest ones first. 

"The wicked draw their swords and string their bows to kill the poor and the oppressed, to slaughter those who do right." 

Ps 37:14


But enough about what the enemy is doing. That is obvious, overwhelming, and heart-wrenching. 

What is God doing? and what does He want us to be doing?

I loved it when President Trump (my over-protective dad :) said, "I will never stop fighting for you". I love it because that is what God says.

"The Lord himself will fight for you. Just stay calm.”

Ex 14:14


The Lord has allowed the enemy to do what he is doing. I don't know why. Most people in the Bible were very confused because God's plan is so much higher than ours. Our thoughts can't understand what He is doing.  Job certainly couldn't understand. After every traumatic thing that happened to him, he finally says "some things are too wonderful for me to know/understand".  

But then Job goes on to say what he does know:

"For I know that my Redeemer lives, And He shall stand at last on the earth"

Job 19:25

So after all Job endured with no explanation, he sums it all up with that. Some things are too wonderful to understand but I KNOW MY REDEEMER LIVES. 

When we don't understand what is going on, we have to remember that our Redeemer lives. He is coming to make all things right. God has a plan in this chaos. It is unfolding before our eyes. America has lost it's power as a country because it rejected God and His Word. We have piled our sin all the way up to heaven. 

We are living in the days of Noah. Right is wrong and wrong is right. Evil is paraded and righteousness prosecuted. 

2 Peter 3 talks about how we are to live in the last days. (I am going to be memorizing it today if you would like to join me. )

The first verse of 2 Peter 3 says it was written to stimulate us to wholesome thinking! We need that now more than ever! Minds stimulated by the Word of God instead of the news or social media! 

So, drum roll please....

Number one thing to DO: 

1. Stimulate your minds to wholesome thinking. 


Guard what comes into your mind. Remind yourself of the truth of the Word! 

"I have written... them as reminders to stimulate you to wholesome thinking."

Stimulate means to agitate, to fully WAKE UP, to activate! We need our minds activated and fully awakened by the Word. "Wholesome thinking" means pure thoughts or "found pure when unfolded and examined by the sun's light". Our thought life needs to be pure right now. So holy that when  our thoughts come into the light, they are found 100% pure. That is so convicting and makes me pause this second to repent of an impure thought life. 

The passage goes on to say that scoffers are coming following their own evil desires. It tells us a day is like a thousand years to the Lord and that He is not being slow. He is being patient WITH YOU and because He doesn't want anyone to perish.

Instead he is patient with you, not wanting anyone to perish, but everyone to come to repentance.

When He does come, it will be like a thief. And it says that everything will disappear with a roar, the earth will be destroyed by fire and everything done on the earth will be laid bare. There will be no where to hide and no one to blame. We will all give an account for how we lived on this earth. 

Then it goes on to tell us what to do since everything is getting destroyed.

"Since everything will be destroyed in this way, what kind of people ought you to be? 

You ought to live holy and godly lives"

Number 2 thing we "ought" to be doing:

2. We are to be living Holy and Godly Lives!

So, as you make your daily decisions, ask yourself: Is this holy? Is this godly?

If you don't know what is holy and what is godly, ask God to show you through His Word.

We don't decide what is holy and godly, God already did and He has told us. 

as you look forward to the day of God and speed its coming.

drum roll for #3!!!!

3. Look FORWARD to what God is going to do and SPEED IT'S COMING!

Keep looking forward. The best days are truly yet to come. We have so much TO LOOK FORWARD to as believers. God has given us a FUTURE and a hope. No one can take that away. How do we speed it's coming? I believe by sharing the gospel. That is what God is waiting on. He desires that everyone hear the gospel and be saved! If you want to get out of this broken place faster, SHARE THE GOSPEL with someone today. :) 

It goes on to tell us what we are looking forward to:

But in keeping with His promise we are looking forward to a new heaven and a new earth, where righteousness dwells.

Can you imagine living in a place where only righteousness dwells!!?? 

We will!

Let's move on to the 4th things we need to be doing...

4. Bust your tail to be found spotless, blameless, and AT PEACE with Him.

So then, dear friends, since you are looking forward to this, make every effort to be found spotless, blameless and at peace with Him.

How is God going to find us when He comes? Living in sin? Or serving Him? Bitter or at peace? 

Blameless or ashamed? How we are living right now matters. We could see Him face-to-face this afternoon. What condition will He find us in? Bust your tail... "so that when He appears, we may be confident and unashamed before Him at His coming." 1 John 2:28

Remember that God's patience means salvation for so many... if they hear and respond to the gospel. Tell them the way to heaven! 

2 Peter also tells us that when ignorant and unstable people distort Scripture, it is to their own destruction. We are already seeing people use the Word of God to promote their evil agendas. They won't get away with it in the long run. What they are doing is self-destructing. 

They have pulled a grenade and put it in their pocket. 

The last thing this tells us to do is...

5. Be on your guard so that you may not to get carried away by the error of evil people... but grow in the grace and knowledge of Jesus!

be on your guard so that you may not be carried away by the error of the lawless and fall from your secure position. 

But grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.

I am grieving as I watch our country destroyed but I am determined not to get "carried away" by all the error of evil people. I am determined to grow in 2021.

I want Him to find me at peace. The wicked leaders in our country now were not my will or my vote. God has allowed this I know He will continue to empower us to know how He wants us to live. Jesus Christ cannot be de-platformed and the Word of God will never be silenced. The people trying to attack the Bride of Christ will one day be gnashing their teeth and bowing their knees as the Bride of Christ is revealed. 

So what are suppose to do now? Start with those 5 things. Or start with 1. Read 2 Peter 3 yourself and ask God to show you what you need to be doing. 

Do not give way to despair. Continue to KNOW that our Redeemer lives when you don't know anything else. The joy of the Lord will be our strength in 2021! I am grieving for our nation, for the unborn, for the elderly, for the Church, etc. But we do not grieve as those who have no hope. 

I am stockpiling on the Word of God and on Rice-A-Roni in order to be ready to help those in need :). We are considering growing a garden (as much as I despise the time that will take), not out of fear but out of preparation. We want to be able to continue to have food to share no matter what comes. 

"When God's people are in need, be ready to help them. Always be eager to practice hospitality." Rom 12

Fix your eyes on Jesus. He is working. It is exciting to serve Him in these dark days. Yes, there is evil pouring in with destruction in it's wake. Without God in leadership, expect chaos and disorder. :( 

But, God uses what the enemy intends for evil for good and for the saving of many lives. It also says in 1 John that the reason that Jesus came was to DESTROY the devil's work. 

We are going to see miracles in 2021. We are going to see revival. And I believe we are going to hear the trumpet sound at any moment. 

Don't lose heart. Stay busy and keep building the Kingdom of God by sharing the gospel.

Let's work together to speed up the return of Christ!

 I am the resurrection and the life. Whoever believes in me, though he die, yet shall he live, and everyone who lives and believes in me shall never die. Do you believe this?

John 11:25-26

God will never stop fighting for you. 
Spend time with Him today.

Steph
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Saturday, January 16, 2021

Sandcastles and Tsunamis

 

There was a spiritual storm that came in to the world in 2020. I am not sure any of us had any warning. It was a spiritual tsunami that caught us all of guard.  Now that the tsunami is rolling back out to sea, it is revealing the destruction and disaster it left behind. 

If you have been around me when I am teaching Bible Studies, I may have taught you the hand motions to one of the most foundational (no pun intended) passages in the Bible:

"So then, everyone who hears my words and puts them into practice is like a wise man. 

He builds his house on the rock 

The rain comes down. The water rises. The winds blow and beat against that house. But it does not fall. It is built on the rock.  But everyone who hears my words and does not put them into practice is like a foolish man. 

He builds his house on sand.  

The rain comes down. The water rises. The winds blow and beat against that house. And it falls with a loud crash.”

Matt 7:24-27

As we are surveying the shocking damage caused by this spiritual storm, there is one thing the houses left standing have in common: They were built on the solid rock of Jesus...OR, they ran to the rock that was higher than them when the storm hit. 


"From the end of the earth I will cry to You, When my heart is overwhelmed; Lead me to the rock that is higher than I." Ps 61:2


Our house definitely felt the full vengeance of this spiritual storm. We got close, hunkered down, and ran for safety: to THE ROCK, to Jesus Christ. 

As the wind and rain beat against the windows of our house (for a long time), the waters started rising. We knew only the Lord could keep us safe in this level of storm.  Our house survived... only because HE WAS STRONGER THAN THE STORM.

The beauty about Jesus is that you can run to Him at any time. Maybe your house wasn't built on the solid rock of Jesus and there is major destruction in  your marriage and the lives of your kids. When your heart is overwhelmed, RUN to the rock that is higher than the waters engulfing your house! It isn't too late!!

 I remember when our friends were stuck in the hurricane in Abaco, everyone was running for the highest point on the island. They wanted to get higher than the storm's waters. They survived the storm because of where they ran. We will survive because of Who we run to.

As we watch the waters from the 2020 tsunami continue to recede, we are faced with the reality that the storm left in its wake. The sad reality is that there may be another storm brewing. We have to continue to run to the solid rock of Jesus with our families.  Not to wine, not to prescription medications to dull the anxiety and help us disengage in the war, not to extra-marital affairs, nothing will see us safely through these storms other than the Lord and His Word.  We have to learn how to deal with anxiety in a healthy way and use the tools God has given us BEFORE running to alcohol and/or drugs. 

Here's the deal, the tsunami is coming whether you are sober-minded or not. You need to be clear-headed in order to pray and run to safety. Make every effort to stay clear-minded! There is a reason that command comes right before the roaring lion verse.

"Be ALERT and of SOBER MIND. Your enemy the devil prowls around like a roaring lion looking for someone to devour." 1 Peter 5:8

Believe me, I want to check out right now too. This boxing match in the spiritual realm is intense and bloody. The seriousness of what is happening in our world can be so overwhelming. I am counseling people in crisis almost every day. Marriages falling apart, depressed teens, depressed adults, adults trying to figure out how to care for their elderly parents, etc. It would be so nice to pretend like this isn't happening and just drink wine, but it IS. And God has entrusted us with the ministry of reconciliation. We have to be begging people to be reconciled to God and to each other.  We have to be teaching people how to build their house on the ROCK or rebuild their houses on the ROCK.  We need to be in search and rescue right now, trying to find people who are buried in the wreckage of this storm and fighting for life. We need to make our homes ground zero for the wounded.  Take a break from the fight and get refreshed with some LIVING WATER and then get back in the fight! There is no time for resting. Look what happened to David when he stayed home (napping and going on strolls) instead of engaging in the war. 

"In the spring, at the time when kings march out to war, David sent out Joab and his servants with the whole army of Israel...

One evening David got up from his bed and strolled around on the roof of the palace. 

And from the roof he saw a woman bathing—a very beautiful woman."

Disengaging from war will get you into a bigger mess. We are meant to be busy in battle.

It keeps us out of trouble. If they enemy has tempted you with an extra-marital affair when you should have been out to war, RUN. 

"Run from sexual sin! No other sin so clearly affects the body as this one does."

1 Cor 6:18

GET OUT OF DANGER NOW.

*********************

How do you build your house on the rock? The passage tells us. You HEAR the Word of God and put it into practice. We can't be hearers only but DOERS. We believe the Word of God is true and we act on it. Faith without works is dead. Even the demons believe and tremble. This is different. This isn't "Church", this is total surrender and commitment to obeying the Word of God- no matter what. 

This means walking in the power of the Holy Spirit. Being so filled with light, that you have no dark corners. Asking God to make you His floodlight.

"If you are filled with light, with no dark corners, then your whole life will be radiant, as though a floodlight were filling you with light.”

Luke 11:36

If your marriage is in trouble (don't be embarrassed, most are!), run with your spouse to the rock that is higher. Confess your sins to your spouse and ask God to take your broken marriage and put it back together. Develop healthy habits of reading the Bible together and praying together daily. It is the daily seemingly insignificant decisions that are most SIGNIFICANT!!

Watch as God breathes His life back into your marriage. Decide to have fun in these dark days. Surprise your husband with a candle lit dinner after the kids are in bed. Or better yet, run away for an overnight together. Write him a love note. Kiss him for no reason... in front of the kids.

Don't let the flame of your marriage dwindle while being hyper-focused on things you can't control. Focus on what you can control. Fan the flame of your marriage! Ask God for creativity how to bless your spouse. There is a reason it is called "making love". I really think God has given us the ability to "make" love! Ask God to give you love FROM HIM for your spouse. Your love has limits. His doesn't. His love is agape (ours isn't) and His love never fails (our does). 

If you have a spouse who is an addict, get help. Nothing will work while they are addicted. They have to be sober-minded for there to be forward movement. Don't be an sin enabler. Get them to a Christian rehab. (I know of a good one in Chattanooga if you are in need).

 God can pull you both out of a slimy pit. I love that God called certain things in our lives "slimy". He knows that some pits we find ourselves in are impossible to get out of apart from His supernatural intervention. 

He lifted me out of the slimy pit,
    out of the mud and mire;
he set my feet on a rock
    and gave me a firm place to stand.

Ps 40:2


The enemy has weakened us all this year. It won't require much for him to slug us with one final and fatal blow. 

BUT GOD....

“My grace is all you need. My power works best in weakness.” So now I am glad to boast about my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ can work through me.

2 Cor 12:9


The power of God works BEST in our weakness! Bring your weakness to the Lord, so that the power of Christ can flow through your spiritual veins. 



Now, is not the time to disengage. We are all weary. Do not check out.
Do not give up.
FIGHT.

"Don't be afraid of them. Remember the Lord, who is great and awesome, and fight for your families, your sons and your daughters, your wives and your homes."
Neh 4:14

If you need help, email me. I loved that picture that was circulating in the news of the waitress that reached out to the abused boy. 
She wrote him a note and he responded: 


God is reaching out to you. He wants to HELP you.
Respond to Him!

The Lord hears his people when they call to him for help.
    He rescues them from all their troubles.
Ps 34:17

If you don't know the Lord, today is the day of salvation. 
These spiritual tsunamis before the return of Jesus will overpower you apart from the saving power of God. 
(Think sandcastle vs tsunami)



Repent of your sin.
Believe and be saved!
When the rain and wind beat against your house, it won't fall.
(Think house high on a rock)



I will end with this prayer... that God would strengthen you in you INNER MAN! (or woman!)

"For this reason I bow my knees to the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, from whom the whole family in heaven and earth is named, that He would grant you, according to the riches of His glory, to be strengthened with might through His Spirit in the inner man"

Eph 3:14-16

Steph
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Thursday, January 14, 2021

Cancel Culture

There is so much anger, hatred, and bitterness in our world today. You can see it oozing out of people's mouths and eyes on the news. 

The love of many has certainly grown cold as it says it will in the last days.

What is this new idea "cancel culture" that is becoming normalized in our culture?

Here is the definition of cancel culture:

"Cancel culture (or call-out culture) is a modern form of ostracism in which someone is thrust out of social or professional circles - either online on social media, in the real world, or both. Those who are subject to this ostracism are said to be "canceled."

This isn't just happening in social and professional circles, it is happening in families. I would describe "cancel culture" simply as unforgiveness. 

If we don't agree with someone, it is much easier to remove them from our lives than to do the hard work healthy relationships require and talk through disagreements. Another hard thing it requires is HUMILITY. People who have adopted this cancel culture think they are right, innocent, and validated in their decision to remove someone from their lives. 

Is this what the Bible teaches?

No. 

The Bible says that God requires us to walk in forgiveness. It warns us that we can develop roots of bitterness by "canceling" people and ultimately defile those around us. We aren't to let the sun go down on our anger. To forgive whatever grievance we have with one another. The strange thing about this cancel culture is that they are usually the ones doing the harm yet blaming it on the one they cancel. New Age Religion calls this "neutralizing" people. That if someone is "toxic", you simply neutralize them and move on with your life. Then you are finally free

But are you really free? Is it even realistic to remove all toxic people from our lives while we live on this earth? Maybe if you live alone on a deserted island.

But then again you are actually STILL STUCK with a toxic person because of the sin in your own heart! To think everyone else is toxic and our heart is pure is a very deceptive lie from the pit.

The Bible teaches us we are to cancel ourSELVES. We are to nail our sinful nature to the cross and not live for ourselves anymore. 

While we were sinners (or while we were TOXIC), Christ died for us!


By "canceling/neutralizing" people (aka unforgiveness), we are pouring more "toxins"(aka sin) into our own heart.

If anybody should have canceled a culture, it was Jesus Christ! 

He should have canceled me, and you, and the entire toxic/sinful world! 

Let's remember His last words:


And Jesus said, “Father, forgive them, for they know not what they do.”

Jesus died offering forgiveness to the world. The world that nailed Him to the cross... because He SO loved them. There is a direct correlation between the forgiveness He offers us and the forgiveness we offer others!

"Get rid of all bitterness, rage, anger, harsh words, and slander, as well as all types of evil behavior.  Instead, be kind to each other, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, just as God through Christ has forgiven you." Eph 4:31-32


Unforgiveness is required before we come to the Father in prayer.

"And when you stand praying, if you hold anything against anyone, forgive them, so that your Father in heaven may forgive you your sins.”


Anger and unforgiveness does not free us. 

It controls us.  

And “don’t sin by letting anger control you.” Don’t let the sun go down while you are still angry,  for anger gives a foothold to the devil.

Eph 4:26-27


I think when we fail to walk in grace and humility and hold grudges, we are at great danger of falling away. We cannot FORGET where we came from. 


But those who fail to develop in this way are shortsighted or blind, forgetting that they have been cleansed from their old sins.

So, dear brothers and sisters, work hard to prove that you really are among those God has called and chosen. Do these things, and you will never fall away. 

2 Peter 1:9,10


We have to make allowance for each other's faults! God made a costly allowance for ours.

Make allowance for each other’s faults, and forgive anyone who offends you. Remember, the Lord forgave you, so you must forgive others.


If you have adopted this "cancel-culture" belief system, ask God to forgive you. It is definitely the short-cut out of difficult relationships but it defiles you and so many others in the long run. 

If someone says, “I love God,” but hates a fellow believer, that person is a liar; for if we don’t love people we can see, how can we love God, whom we cannot see? 1 John


If you are having trouble with anger and bitterness because you have been wronged, take it to the Lord. He is not going to command you to do something He won't empower you to do. He will give you the power to forgive. There is real hurt and pain that can only be handled by Jesus. 

Maybe your pain is directed toward someone in your family. Go to them. Be at peace with all men as far as it is up to you. If they don't want peace or relationship, that is their decision but be a peacemaker. Walk in humility. God will give you the strength. It is very vulnerable. Imagine how Jesus felt as He hung naked and bleeding on the cross offering forgiveness to those casting lots over his clothes. 

Don't take part in this new push of bitterness and unforgiveness. It is way too dangerous spiritually. 

If you want to feel refreshed, repent of unforgiveness. Extend forgiveness. Walk in love. 

"Repent, then, and turn to God, so that your sins may be wiped out, that times of refreshing may come from the Lord"

Acts 3:19

Take your pain to the Lord. Ask Him for help. Don't start "canceling" people you disagree with politically. Don't believe the New Age garbage that you can "neutralize" people who are toxic. New Age teaching convinces you that anyone you want to remove from your life a "narcissist".  There is no taking responsibility of your own sin.

What this really does is "neutralize" you in any effective ministry because it allows a root of bitterness to be planted. 

The Holy Spirit will empower you to navigate difficult relationships. 

I am not suggesting anyone stay in an abusive relationship, that is different.  There are VERY difficult, selfish people that we can't pour all of our emotional energy into. That is not what I am saying. Have boundaries (when necessary) but let the Holy Spirit guide those boundaries in love. And always be ready and willing to forgive!

Because of Jesus, we can love FREELY. 

"I will heal their waywardness and love them freely, for my anger has turned away from them."

Hosea 14:4


Ask God to give you His power to love people FREELY. Not holding onto anger and grudges. Give your pain to the Lord and let Him truly SET YOU FREE!

Christians must say no to "cancel culture"! 

And say yes to "forgiveness culture"!

I think "remembering" is the key to being able to forgive.  Remember how much Jesus has forgived you. I am so thankful He didn't take a short cut and just "cancel" us. He died in order to forgive and have relationship. 

Steph 

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Wednesday, January 13, 2021

Spiritual Flat Tires

Jan 13, 2021 

I am following Nehemiah's example and weeping, mourning, fasting, and praying for our nation. 

Here is where I think we are in this situation in our country: 

I think we may be in Exodus 14 :).  

In Ex 14, the Red Sea is being divided and God's chosen people are about to go free. The Israelites are about to walk on DRY GROUND (have you ever seen a drained lake? It isn't DRY). 

There was a wall of water on their left and a wall on the right. There was a "way of escape". There is always a way of escape with the Lord! 

"Your road led through the sea, your pathway through the mighty waters--

a pathway no one knew was there!"

Ps 77:19

The Egyptians continue to pursue them right into this pathway. Next the Lord looks down from heaven and throws the very organized Egyptian army into confusion. I love the next part...

"And He took off their chariot wheels, so that they drove them with difficulty;

 and the Egyptians said, “Let us flee from the face of Israel, for the Lord fights for them against the Egyptians.”

I think we are going to see miracles this week. We are dealing with an organized army of people fighting against God and His Bride. 

I am anticipating them to be thrown into confusion and for God "to take the wheels off their chariots".

 They may just be walking into a Red Sea trap. It is fun to watch how just when the enemy boasts that he has the people of God in check, God says, 

"check-mate".  



I could be wrong but I am praying for that and watching for it. 

But, here is the good news! Our hope is in the Lord just like Shadrack, Meshack, and Abednego. We KNOW He is able to save but even if He doesn't!!!! So, even if He doesn't throw this army of misguided people into confusion, then He will still protect us. You can see in Isaiah 65 that there is a distinction between wicked people and His true servants. And their experience in trial is much different. (This is obviously talking about Israel but the Word of God is alive and active and speaks into OUR lives and our situations.)

“I was ready to respond, but no one asked for help.
    I was ready to be found, but no one was looking for me.
I said, ‘Here I am, here I am!’
    to a nation that did not call on my name.
All day long I opened my arms to a rebellious people.
    But they follow their own evil paths
    and their own crooked schemes.
All day long they insult me to my face
    by worshiping idols in their sacred gardens.
    They burn incense on pagan altars...

“But I will not destroy them all,”

    says the Lord.
“For just as good grapes are found among a cluster of bad ones
    (and someone will say, ‘Don’t throw them all away—
    some of those grapes are good!’),
so I will not destroy all Israel.
    For I still have true servants there.

Therefore, this is what the Sovereign Lord says:

“My servants will eat,
    but you will starve.
My servants will drink,
    but you will be thirsty.
My servants will rejoice,
    but you will be sad and ashamed.
14 
My servants will sing for joy,
    but you will cry in sorrow and despair."
Is 65
15 


So, even if wheels don't start falling off their wagons, there is still supernatural protection found in being a true servant of God. 

I am burdened to get ready for what is coming. I am not adopting the "fortress mentality" of building a bunker and hiding in it with 1,000 rolls of toilet paper. 

We may be hiding in caves eventually, I don't know.... but for now we have to stay true to mission and GO into all the world with the gospel!  

I am stockpiling the Word of God and food in my house because I want to be ready for the days coming. Not only for my family but for hurting people. People who need a warm meal, the word that sustains the weary, and a safe place to run. The Bible says the Name of the Lord is strong tower, the righteous run to it and are safe. I want our home to be symbolic of that verse. God is definitely answering that prayer as our home is full of people coming in and out. Some for comfort-food and some for comfort-counseling from the Word. Some to play ultimate frisbee. :)

(warning: always be discerning about who you let into your home. The enemy will do sneaky stuff if you aren't discerning. He is cruel and loves to sneak into Christian homes. I am not as ignorant as I used to be.)

The gift of hospitality has never felt more special than it does now. We need to be getting our homes ready to share... and to simply love on people.

"Cheerfully share your home with those who need a meal or a place to stay."

1 Peter 4:9


We are headed into some major spiritual turbulence, no doubt. 

People say, "I am not buying into the conspiracy theories". Ok, fine, but you DO need to buy into the "signs of the times". Jesus said some people know more about the weather than they do about the signs of the times. 

 "You know how to interpret the weather signs in the sky, but you don’t know how to interpret the signs of the times!" Matt 16:3

Joseph was warned of things to come and so he prepared. Noah was too. Think of how they must have mocked Noah for buying into conspiracy theory! I think the reason the Prov 31 woman laughed at the days to come WAS BECAUSE SHE WAS PREPARED.  As I memorize Prov 31, I see a very wise woman who made sure her family was taken care of. She also opened her arms to the poor and extended her hands to the needy.  She had plenty to share. I am not laughing at the days to come yet but having a plan sure does help! 

Ask God what to do. He will show you. And when He does, obey! I think God is going to use His true servants in INCREDIBLE ways in 2021. He probably won't if they are in a bunker. He probably will if they are prepared!

 Pray and see how God wants to use your family to BLESS others during this time of hardship and darkness. Store up to give. Ask God to bring people to your home who need encouragement. Who knows... an angel may just show up! I want an angel to come spend the night!

"Do not forget to show hospitality to strangers, for by so doing some people have shown hospitality to angels without knowing it." Hebrews 13:2

We have to use our freedoms before they are gone. 

Or before WE are gone! 

Last night, as Tim and I watched the choatic insanity surrounding the new efforts to impeach the President of the United States, I got so discouraged. It just makes me soul-sick to watch people fighting for evil and seem to be winning (they won't in the end). Tim and I got down on our knees and prayed together for our country. 

Tim ministered to me so much last night. He said, "Steph, remember how Jesus was asleep in the boat in the storm? It was because the storm was of NO THREAT to Him. These people are of NO THREAT to Him." 

That is comforting to think about. That Jesus Christ could be soundly sleeping as they go through these dumb debates. Maybe that is what I should be doing. I don't know. But I do know that Jesus can wake up and silence this national storm at any time. He isn't biting His nails watching this go down like I am, or like the disciples in the boat were. The disciples even asked Him if He cared when they woke Him up from his nap on the cushion

"Jesus was in the stern, sleeping on a cushion. The disciples woke him and said to him, "Teacher, don't you care if we drown?"

Mark 4:38

It wasn't that He didn't care. He was in total control the entire time. He silenced the storm in an instant. He can do that at any point.

As Tim and I kept talking, Tim said, "Steph, what if we REALLY ARE the generation to be raptured? What if we never have to say goodbye? "

(Cue the ugly cry while I fall asleep beside my precious husband. That is one of my biggest prayer requests: that our family would go be with the Lord together.) 

What if our generation IS the favored generation that doesn't taste death!? 

I think we ARE.

"The generation that never had to say goodbye". 

I know living in 2021 doesn't feel like favor but IT IS. 
He is going to show us what to do. 
Get gas. Get food. Get in the Word. :)
Not because you are paranoid but because you are prepared.

"Preach the word; be prepared in season and out of season"
2 Tim 4:2

Be ready to minister. 

Put your spiritual tennis "shoes" on and get on your mark. 

"For shoes, put on the peace that comes from the Good News so that you will be fully prepared."

Eph 6:15

God's ways are higher than ours and His thoughts not our thoughts. 

No matter what God chooses to do in our country, I am confident of this:

 we are going to see the goodness of God in the land of the living. 

Don't lose hope!

Steph 

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Monday, January 11, 2021

"Tell me, what do you have in your house?"

I hope you got excited about your email notification! It took a genius to figure out how to update this dinosaur blog. :) 

I am trying to move away from facebook and instagram to stay off the radar and so I don't get censored as quickly. 

I also want you to have something to look forward to reading!

So much bad news, fake news, sad news.

I want you to read some GOOD NEWS!

And guess what, with Jesus Christ...there will always be GOOD NEWS!

The good news is that no matter what happens in this life, if Jesus Christ is your Savior, you are invincible in life and death. You are protected by the powerful name of Jesus and God can supernaturally provide for us in the scariest times. 

Tonight I was super encouraged as I read the story about the poor widow in 2 Kings 4. Her husband died and then a creditor came and said he was going to take her SONS if she didn't pay up. 

She had NO MONEY. My stomach dropped thinking about someone threatening to take my kids away into slavery... after my husband died.

She goes to Elisha and tells him the deal. He asked her what she has in her house. 

"Elisha replied to her, “How can I help you? Tell me, what do you have in your house?”

“Your servant has nothing there at all,” she said, 

“except a small jar of olive oil.”

 He tells her to go to her neighbor's house and borrow all the jars she can. 


Then he tells her to go home, shut the door, and start pouring. You have to wonder what she was thinking but off she goes! 

She pours, and pours, and pours, and pours. She tells her sons to bring her another jar and they say... there aren't any more. 

It says, "then the oil stopped flowing".



She pays off all her debts with the money from all the oil and then has money for her and her sons to live on. 

WOW.

God is so good. He cared about her. And He cares about YOU. 

It encouraged me that God can do miracles BEHIND CLOSED DOORS.

I often worry about how we are gonna have enough food to eat if it keeps getting worse in our country. 

I don't panic but I DO try to prepare. 

 I watched a pastor I respect give a warning that we needed to prepare for what could be a very rough week ahead. He said to get your home ready.  I have ignored most of the hysteria lately but I trust this pastor and I am thankful for a prophetic heads up. 

So, off I went to Costco, like the Prov 31 woman (I have been memorizing it)

I was like "the merchant ships bringing food from afar!" 

"She is like the merchant ships,
    bringing her food from afar."

Prov 31

(modern day Costco run!)

I pray as I shop for God to give me wisdom to know how to care for my family in such scary times.

Lots of rice, lots of chicken to grill and freeze, lots of black beans. 

But then my anxiety starts going down as I remember that widow only had one jar of oil

God WILL TAKE CARE OF US if we run out of canned beans!!!! Maybe the black beans will just keep coming! 

We are going to see miracles behind the closed doors of our homes. 

Remember the super scary plague of darkness? I hate the dark. If I was Pharoah, I would have LET THE PEOPLE GO! But guess what... the Israelites had LIGHT IN THEIR HOMES?

I expect to see that if there is a 2021 "black out" (aka Plague of Darkness). 

The Bible says the plague was a darkness that could be FELT

Total black out. 

It lasted 3 days. (let's hope that if we are about to go into a similar black out it will only last 3 days!). But I love the next verse... yet all the Israelites had light in the places where they lived!!! 

YAY GOD!!!

Let there be LIGHT! 

And there was light. 

And there will be light.

 Because Jesus is the LIGHT and if He is living in your home, there will be light. 

You will not walk in darkness.  


"Then the Lord said to Moses, “Stretch out your hand toward the sky so that darkness spreads over Egypt—darkness that can be felt.” So Moses stretched out his hand toward the sky, and total darkness covered all Egypt for three days. No one could see anyone else or move about for three days. 

Yet all the Israelites had light in the places where they lived." 

Exodus 10

We probably are headed for a "black out" and maybe another stay-at-home order as riots break out surrounding this very controversial inauguration. And as more info comes out about serious crimes committed behind the scenes. 

As all the other believers have said,  I also condemn violence of any sort- I hope and pray there is no more violence or lives lost. I played zero part in that. That cannot be associated with me or 99% of people at that rally.  

God hates those who love violence.

The Lord examines the righteous, but the wicked, those who love violence, he hates with a passion.

Psalm 11:5

*********************

The President of the United States has successfully been cut off from his people by big tech bullies and we are left wondering what on earth is going to happen next. Nancy Pelosi is energized as she tries to destroy Trump.  But I think there was a woman scarier than Nancy Pelosi once and her name was Jezebel. Elijah was terrified of her. And rightly so. 

She killed prophets for fun. She hated the people of God and especially the prophets. She married a guy named Ahab and convinced him to promote and worship Baal, a weird nature/fertility god.

She was ruthless in her pursuit of Elijah. It was her full-time job. She would stop at nothing to have him killed. She turned her husband against him too. She was very convincing and very divisive. 

I find it so ironic that her wicked husband whose wife is "TROUBLE MAKER of the century calls Elijah "the troubler of Israel".

"So Obadiah went to inform Ahab, who went to meet Elijah. When Ahab saw Elijah, he said to him, “Is that you, O troubler of Israel?”

“I have not troubled Israel,” Elijah replied, “but you and your father’s house have, for you have forsaken the commandments of the Lord and have followed the Baals. Now summon all Israel to meet me on Mount Carmel, along with the four hundred and fifty prophets of Baal and the four hundred prophets of Asherah who eat at Jezebel’s table.”

So Ahab summoned all the Israelites and assembled the prophets on Mount Carmel. Then Elijah approached all the people and said, “How long will you waver between two opinions? If the Lord is God, follow Him. But if Baal is God, follow him.”

But the people did not answer a word."

The enemy loves to do this. I have definitely experienced it. I

t's this weird self-fulfilling prophecy when the one causing the trouble calls you the "troubler"

It is so crazy, it usually shocks you. 

I love how Elijah responds to it. 

"I haven't troubled Israel, YOU HAVE!"

These accusations influenced the Israelites so Elijah has to go call down fire from heaven to remind them of truth! It is sad though because Elijah has to ask them how long they will waver- if the Lord is God, follow Him but if Baal is God, follow him. 

I think this applies so much to what we are watching right now! The Christians are either being silenced or accused of being TROUBLERS. We are such trouble that we must be STOPPED/CANCELED! 

An extra-sad-bonus to this is that Christians are watching and wavering between choosing God or the world. Just like the Israelites were. 

It is time to decide though. 
Choose God!

Don't get confused by all these crazy accusations and twisted types of blame-shifting.

You know what is true!

A line has been drawn in the sand.

We have to KNOW where we stand in order to survive what is coming. 

"He who is not with Me is against Me"

Matt 12:30

Y'all, no more wavering! Give your life completely to Christ. Don't waver between God and the world. Go all in! There is safety in following Christ. There is no safety in the world! They may claim peace but they have none.


"They dress the wound of my people as though it were not serious. ‘Peace, peace,’ they say, when there is no peace."

Jer 6:14


Going with the crowd will not end in peace. Follow Christ!!

 Yes, the way is narrow and few find it but it leads to LIFE!!!

"But small is the gate and narrow the way that leads to life, and only a few find it."

Matt 7:14


I hope you are encouraged by reading the Word here. I will keep sharing it until they shut me down. 

God WILL take care of you. Your canned beans won't run out! Look what God did for Elijah (who was unable to run to Costco and stock up!):

 The ravens brought him bread and meat in the morning and bread and meat in the evening, and he drank from the brook.

If you are wavering between God and the world, tell the Lord the truth. Ask His forgiveness and get right with the Lord right now. He LOVES you. He wants to guide you through this darkness. He wants to LIGHT UP your home. 

"You are the light of the world. 

A city on a hill cannot be hidden. 

Neither do people light a lamp and put it under a basket. 

Instead, they set it on a stand, and it gives light to everyone 

in the house." 

Matt 5:14,15


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