Friday, May 30, 2008

Peace in Believing

I have been involved in a number of situations recently. It seems that not only are events speeding up in a sense but, in my life anyway, I seem to be perceiving supernatural involvement. God is working in many lives that are in some way interwoven with us. Since our son just recently went into the army I have spent a lot more time working on writing letters. I had almost 'forgot' how to write snail mail (U.S. Postal service) due to the advent of email. But since our son can only get letters for the time being I am making an all out effort to supply a need. This has not been an easy experience for him. We have been claiming God's Holy Spirit and the ministry of angels with, for and in him. Some 'ex-marine' told him that what he is attempting at present is harder than what the 'ex-marine' had already been through. I could believe that with just the few 'reports' I have already received. Since most of my letters are encouraging mainly I decided to copy them and send them to a number of other folk who I believe would also be encouraged with mail. Some of them are presently within the bounds of confinement where they can only receive letters as well. Others are folks who just need more love. It has brought joy to my heart as I hear that these letters have brought encouragement where they have been sent.

Another 'situation' is dealing with some travel plans. I believe God has something in store of us in that area but at present our plans have been in a state of 'change' rather than 'solid'. I am rejoicing in that 'lack' of set dates now though, for our son's dates when we are invited to go for a 'family day' and for his graduation have just been changed due to circumstances beyond our control. I can see God's hand in those situations and I am claiming His peace in my heart.

Where we live has been having some interesting 'interactions' as well. At present there is a young man here and at times he comes and helps me with 'farm' jobs. Today we worked on our driveway. Over the years some of the gravel has gotten mounded and in other places it has gotten quite low. Yesterday and today we worked at rearranging the gravel along with some added 'larger stones' to level out the drive. I am not all that strong but by working on it a little at a time it is looking better and easier to drive on as well. So how does working on the 'road' relate to peace. At present I believe that God is in the business of preparing this property to be a special type of ministry to reveal to others what He is really like. The nicer the place looks the more we will be enabled to share God's love, Joy and Peace with others around us.

Another situation has been bringing me both joy and peace. The lady we helped move (for the second time) has been 'blossoming' in ways I had never seen in her before. When I first met her going on two years ago she was in a bitter legal 'mess'. She was finally extracated from the 'material' part of the 'mess' and in my mind I saw her in a healing process. When she found out that in a sense she had been 'betrayed' again in relation to the house she had moved in to, at first she seemed very frustrated, but then she began to changed. The Lord led to another house, even better, and over a period of about 3 weeks we packed, moved and unpacked (some unpacking is still going on but she is getting along very well, thank you). Due to some other activities that has pulled me away from helping her so much I haven't been to her place much for the past couple of weeks. This afternoon I was able to slip over and help her get her garden planted (we had bought plants earlier but just now got them into her garden area). I really believe that God has been healing her wounds. When a friend took her into town to get some items they needed to go near where the former antagonist 'worked'. My friend made the comment something like "so what". That was a real blessing to hear that from her. Yes, I believe that God is giving both her and myself peace in believing that He is still in control in our lives.

I also believe that the Lord would have me grow in the peace in my heart that God is more interested in restoring more love in families than I even understand. I have been blessed by getting back into contact with some family members that I had actually thought didn't want to communicate (lie). Other members have also been calling with questions, comments and prayer requests. It seems that the more I share what God has been doing in my life, the more folks I have to share with. I am humbly grateful that God seems to be wanting to use me in this way.

Our church has been having a revival during the month of May. May 31st 18 people are either being baptized the first time to signify that they are accepting God's offer to become part of His family here on earth or getting rebaptized in renew their committment to God. There is a great peace that God is wanting to give not only to those who are receiving this awesome experience but also for those of us who will be there to welcome the 'new babes' into our family. This is one of those times when there will be both joy and peace in believing.

Yes, even when outward circumstances don't always seem to lend to peace as the world calls peace, God's kind of peace, beginning with His love in our hearts, can continue to grow as we keep choosing for His will to be our will and we believe that He has our best interests in His heart.

May You have that kind of peace in believing experience in your life as well.

Bringer of Peace

Saturday, May 24, 2008

Sabbath Peace 2

The plan God made involving the Sabbath was unique as well as divine. And because the concept of Sabbath Peace and rest was so effective you can be sure that the enemy will do all in his power to produce counterfeit(s). Why produce a counterfeit if something doesn't work in the first place?

The seventh day Sabbath is the outside sign that I am loving God most, and I love God because He first loved me. I speak good to God, for God and about God because He is already doing the same thing. I am awed as I see more clearly who the God of Peace is and what He is really like.

As I am filled with love from God that capacity allows God's love to flow out to others so that they too can see more of what God is like.

After church I was eating with our church family and a call came to the church from a lady who said she needed a couple of days food. She had just gotten out of the hospital and hadn't really had opportunity to get much yet. I told her I would be happy to bring something over. After everyone had what they wanted we were able to take two dishes made with rice, some desert, a half of a watermelon and some bread. I picked up a few cans of food from our place on our way to the lady's house. After we got there we were able to visit for a little while. I was very thankful for the opportunity to share God's love with another person.

After getting home we read counsel that to let another person suffer for lack of daily 'needs' on the Sabbath is to be guilty of not loving as God intended. I am thankful for the privilege of sharing God's love.

This morning some of my little students got a little bit talkative in the class. At the end another teacher reprimended them. They all said they were sorry. But one of the mothers really 'jumped' on her son and made him come back and apologize again. I told the boy I accepted what he said but I also told the mother that the boy had also said it with the others in class. We spent a few minutes talking together and by the time we parted I believe the boy knew that I loved him just as much as the others in the class.

This evening we have a revival meeting and I am praising the Lord that His love is being revealed to more and more people.

Bringer of Peace

Friday, May 23, 2008

Peace I leave with you

This past week has seemed to be moving 'faster' then the week before, and faster than the week before that, and . . . . So , I wonder what is coming next.
What is has become interesting to me, though, is that real Peace is not related to 'speed'. Peace is something that, at least according to what Jesus said, "Peace I leave with you", is something God gives us. The way Jesus is saying the above sounds like His kind of peace is a Divine gift given to humans when they accept it. He goes on to say, "My peace I give unto you." The folks who were listening to Jesus at that point in time were people He called friends. We sometimes refer to them as 'disciples'. I think we could even go so far as to call them His earthly family. It almost sounds like, by the way He said these words that Jesus was wanting to make sure they understood the gift He was offering. Might it also be that He could tell that they were not really comprehending what He was offering them? He didn't stop, though, but rather added more. "Not as the world giveth, give I unto you. Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid." His kind of peace is obviously not related to 'speed' - how fast life seems to be going. Jesus' kind of peace is something He gives to those who will receive it as a gift. He is called the "Prince of Peace". He is the source of His kind of peace. Some time ago I learned that science had 'discovered' that in order for a mind to increase its capacity to cope with stress, with life, that the human mind must experience not only real peace but also genuine joy in sort of a 'cycle', or better yet in synergy. But science also 'discovered' that real peace, and genuine joy cannot be experienced by a single mind alone. A person can 'feel' happy by themselves, and can be content by themselves, but it is only when two minds 'synchronize'; come into a harmonious unity, that real peace and genuine joy can be experienced. Every time that a human mind experiences a combination of both peace and joy while in sync with another mind their capacity to cope properly with life increases. I wonder if that is one reason Jesus was offering peace. When we accept and experience His kind of peace (a deep, confiding, trusting experience that with Jesus we are 'safe' and we can 'rest in His arms', so to speak, knowing that He will never leave us or forsake us) with His mind along with the 'joy of the Lord' (accepting that Jesus loves to be with us, we are special to Him, like the apple of His eye - that kind of exciting experience), which is called our strength, Jesus knew we would 'grow up', 'mature'. But evidently everything called peace in this world is not the kind of peace that will produce growth and maturity. As quoted above, Jesus said that the kind of experience the world professes of have isn't real. When we truly accept the peace Jesus gives us we no longer are afraid. Jesus noted that what the world labels peace really ends or results in fear. He goes on to warn of that by saying 'Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid.' With the peace of God in our hearts we need no longer be afraid of people, places, experiences or things. We no longer need to be afraid of not having 'enough' of whatever has caused us worry and concern in the past. And as we imbibe of Jesus' kind of peace, and joy, which enables us to grow up like Jesus, other people began to see what God is like through us. That is awesome. And that is the fulfilling of God's law of love.

A few weeks ago we were invited to go to Africa. I mentioned it in previous blog. Not long ago our son went into boot camp in the Army. Just a few weeks ago a friend that we have grown to love found out that the house she was living in was being reposessed and she was being evicted. That isn't all that is going on but does give a little idea of life in this part of the world. The 'excitement' and 'stress' of seeing our son go off to the army was pretty intense at times. Trying to help our friend find another place to live and going to house after house with many a 'no' involved also had it's challenges. And then when, through what I consider a series of miracles, she found a place and we were able to get her moved out of the 'old house' in about one day or so before she would have been evicted from the previous place, that added plenty of 'excitement' (if that is the correct term). The Africa project has had a number of twists and turns and we are not sure yet of the final agenda but it seems certain that God is interested in us going in that direction. During all of this it seems I have spent quite a bit of time encouraging others to put their confidence in the Creator God of the Universe, the Prince of Peace, and to let Him guide them in their lives. Even when things don't go as we wish or hope they would, God's gift of peace in our hearts can enable us to choose to say, "The Lord is with me (us), praise the Lord. I made up a new word this past week. "Phraise the Lord". Sometimes we use the word 'praise' ,which to me means telling what the Lord is really like and what He has done". But often praising the Lord takes more than one word. That is when I started saying "Phraise the Lord". The more I have been 'Phraising' the Lord, using whole phrases to describe what God is like, the more of His kind of peace I have been sensing. When we were looking for houses and a house didn't 'make it', I would tell my friend 'Praise the Lord'. She got to the point where she started to agree with me. I would remind her that she didn't really want it if God didn't want her to have it.
Another friend told me 'God is never late, seldom early and always on time.' God's kind of peace, I believe, also involves trusting God, having confidence that He is doing what is best for me and to His glory - to reveal to the whole universe what love really means.
When I have chosen to 'behold the Lamb of God' and focus on what He is like, God has been giving me more of His kind of peace.
The Sabbath is an outward symbol of God's kind of peace. I am writing this as another seventh-day Sabbath has just begun. Somehow, even though the weeks seem so busy, the Prince of Peace never fails to meet His part of the 'peace' appointment every seventh day Sabbath. Whether we understand Him and His command for us to meet Him every seventh day Sabbath, which He began in Eden, or not, when we come to meet Him for this weekly appointment with the Prince of Peace, He graciously offers a new supply of His kind of peace - a quiet, confiding, restful experience with the Creator God of the universe, and learning that He really does love me.

And as His family join together as a 'body' of Christ in 'rest related activities', the synergistic effect is multiplied. What a wonderful plan begun by the Creator God of the universe.

I pray that you will experience at least a double portion of God's kind of peace this seventh day Sabbath.

Shalom my friend

Bringer of Peace.

Thursday, May 15, 2008

God's kind of Peace - 2

"Great Peace have they which love Thy Law and nothing shall offend them."

That is practically a sermon in itself. Think of it. This is not referring to just any old peace, or peace once in a while, but 'great peace'. Not just a little bit here and there, but 'great' peace.

Who gets that kind of peace? Those who love God's law.

What kind of love is this speaking about? There is a love between a baby and a caregiver. There is a love between husband and wife. There is a love that is based on hormones - sex. There is a love between friends. Do any and all of those kinds of emotions we often label as love qualify as the kind of love that produces 'great peace'?

This brings up the question of what is God's law? Jesus said in Matthew 22: 37-39 that the first and great commandment was to love God most. The second was similar, which was to love others as we love ourselves. That brings us back to pondering what kind of love are this is talking about.

For one thing, we love because we are loved. We love God because He first loved us. A baby loves mommy because mommy first loved baby. Only by love is love awakened.

Sounds to me like that the kind of peace talked about here is based first on receiving love and secondly on allowing the love received to 'flow through us' and on to another 'mind'.

Could that be one reason why a person who is choosing to accept God's love and then allow that love to flow through them to all they come in contact with, experiences 'great peace'?

God's kind of peace in this context is not dependent on what others 'do' or how they respond, so much, as on how 'open' we are to taking in God's love and sharing it with others.

Looking at the last part of that sentence adds another very interesting component to this 'great peace' experience. When I feel offended by another's action, might it be that the offence is not so much what the other person is 'doing' or how they are 'behaving', but rather that I may be attempting to 'hord' rather than 'share'?

Think of the consequences of this kind of peace based on love. "NOTHING shall offend them". That is really somthing. That is the kind of God we serve. First God loves us. Then the more we accept His love and allow it to 'flow through us' and continue on both to God as supreme and to others as we love ourselves (God's law), the less and less we will perceive offence, until 'nothing will offend us' WOW! That is awesome.

God is love. God loves me. God loves you. The more love we accept and share God's love the less offence we will experience and the greater peace we will enjoy in Jesus.

I believe I have been learning a little bit about that. We chose to help a friend move this week. We have attempted to execute this 'move' in less than one week. (Sometimes I feel I don't want to move for a while right now.) So many small and big experiences have been used by God to show me the reality that He is more interested in people learning to know who He really is rather than in 'material' things during this move.

Monday, with the help of a young man we finally got a 17 ft U-Haul loaded and taken to the new 'home' and unloaded. Tuesday it seemed that anything that could go wrong did - and then some. But by Tuesday p.m. I began to get this strong feeling that this was more than 'just a move', but rather a supernatural 'war zone' if you please. My hubby came over after work and it was a real encouragement to me, but we still seemed to be in 'granny' gear with many a stone in the way.
Folks had promised to help but were mostly 'no show'. Finally my hubby and I just stopped and talked to the Lord for a little while as we rested. We wanted to know what God wanted to happen. My beloved made a statement that I believe was from the Lord and we decided to work at least a little longer. Shortly after that prayer time a couple more folks joined us and as a team we got the truck packed (by about 2 a.m.) The next morning I found out that somewhere around the time we had prayed, other prayers were joining ours. I now firmly believe that a spiritual battle was raging, but God won. God is in the business of winning. He has already declared victory, and as we praise Him it beats back the enemy and gives us the Victory of Jesus.

Wednesday another young man was able to help us get another load and get it unloaded as well (this time by about 10 or 11 p.m.).

I will admit that today I have been a bit slower. A crew came today and moved all the big furniture and our friend is in her new place tonight. We still have a lot to do to get her settled in her new place but I rejoice in the peace God has been giving me through this experience.

It may not sound like a lot - to move in one week - but the last time she had moved it seemed like the whole experience had been dragged out over perhaps two months or so. I learned a lot of lessons but not what I would want to repeat for a 'move'.

According to the above statement, the kind of Peace I am looking for is based on love - God's kind of love. It is also based on our choice to 'receive' love and 'give' love. Might it be that peace gets lost if we try to 'hord' love? or if we 'reject' love? Definitely something to think about.

May God's kind of peace by yours

Bringer of Peace

Sunday, May 11, 2008

Africa Trip

A few weeks ago we were invited to go to Tanzania to help with a 'Pathfinder' camporee. By the sounds of things there may be 15,000 campers and counselors there from about 10 countries. Olive will be sharing about God's plan for life as symbolized in the Biblical sanctuary. When an evangelist from Zimbabwe heard about our trip - both my hubby and I plan to go - he asked if we would also spend some time in his country. We are willing. At this point we are seeking God's agenda. He is the One who is impressing and orchestrating the finances for this mission adventure. We also believe that God is leading to what I call 'stabilize' the property where we are presently living. It is exciting seeing how God is leading in the above projects as well as some others in the 'works'. We get to be channels for God's love to others and He gets the glory, honor and praise. Wow! What a wonderful God we serve.

Back to the Africa trip now. The Camporee is from August 21-30. September is a better month for being in Zimbabwe according to the man who has invited us to come there. We also are hoping to be able to visit Riverside Farm Institute, Zambia - where we spent six years in mission work - while we are on the African continent. We left part of our 'hearts' in Africa when we returned back to the USA in 1983.

It is getting late so I need to go for now. We spent most of today helping our friend get ready to move to another place so we are plenty ready for some much needed rest.

Bringer of Peace

Saturday, May 10, 2008

God's kind of Peace - Wow

"The God of Mighty Miracles is marching through our land,
Healing hearts and healing homes with His Almighty Hand.
He's promised to create our home a happy family
Where love will overflow through time and all eternity.

O, Touch me now, O Holy Spirit, with Your mighty Power.
Do Your miracles of love within this very hour.
Glory, glory, God Almighty, it's Your matchless power.
Praise God for His great miracles right at this very hour.

The God of Mighty Miracles is calling me today.
I hear His voice, I feel His touch, I come without delay.
He stands with open arms to give me JOY and PEACE and LOVE
And soon I'll live forever, Happy Family above.

O, Touch me now, O Holy Spirit, with Your mighty Power.
Do Your Miracles of love within this very hour.
Glory, glory, God Almighty, it's Your matchless power.
Praise God for His great miracles right at this very hour.

The above song was one of the theme songs (from the Inter American Division Happy Family Evangelism series) which we used for Vacation Bible School when we had a program called 'Camp Joy'. I began singing it as I was driving along this week as a response to how God is working.

God's kind of peace in my heart doesn't mean no 'stress', no 'intensity', or even no 'suspense'.
God's kind of peace does involve miracles. Some of them are big and some are small.
This past week it seemed that almost every time I turned around something else was happening and I can only attribute these 'things' and happenings to God's doing. He wants to use us as channels but He gets the glory. He wants us to experience the JOY but He gets the honor. He delights in surprising me, or at least it seems that way, but He gets the credit and praise. Wow! what a Prince of Peace is the Creator God of the Universe.

I have been in touch with some folks concerning some problems they were having. As they shared some interactions between themselves and others involved I couldn't help but praise the Lord. I pointed out how the responses - at least it sure looked that way - were in reality answers to our prayers.

One evening I felt the deep impression to pray for a family member. Actually I ended up including my whole family by the time the Lord bid me 'go in peace' as is a common 'sending' into the day. The next morning my sister shared with me a 'small' (yet really significant, and relief producing for her) event had happened that day. I praised the Lord. I believe that these small indicators are God's way of reminding us to 'stay with Him'.

The friend who I have been helping move has also been encouraging me to get some 'jobs' done in my life arena. One thing involves some possible legal connections. I was thinking and praying about who I should consult. I asked the Lord about different ones and seemed to get negative. Then I asked about someone who had helped a friend of mine and I got an affirmation. Not long after I got a call from the friend who suggested the same 'helper'. I am still seeking God's will, but that is just another indicator that God is in control.

Another friend stopped by our farm to see me but I had already 'left'. She got to talking to some of the other folks here before going on her way. To make a long story short, she told me that she was at a very low 'ebb' in her experience, but the encouragement she received here made a very big difference in her own life. Another praise to the Lord. I hadn't even known she was 'down'. And then to top it off I found out that her visit encouraged some folks here. What a wonderful God in whose family we belong.

Recently my sis sent me an article based on Psalm 50. I received such a blessing from it that I am including it after my comments.

One thing that deeply impressed me was that, at least in Psalm 50, prayer is a legal summons.
I was also really impacted by no. 10 below.

Now, just the very fact that you have taken the time to read this indicates that you are special.
God had a reason for you to be affirmed just now. God has not been caught off guard by either your life experiences or mine. You are being summoned before God - for Him to defend you.
Go in peace.

Bringer of Peace.

From Dr. Brooky Stockton

Prayer as a Legal Pleading

“And call upon Me in the day of trouble;
I shall rescue you, and you will honor Me" (Psalm 50:15).

A child of God will never know God’s strength until he has met adversity. Trouble may be the black horse upon which blessing rides. You can find Christ in an empty wallet. There is something about difficulty that causes us to dig deeper, pray better, and work harder.

Some time ago, I was frivolously sued along with another Christian in retaliation for a lawful action. Though I did nothing wrong, I was concerned. I found myself spending hours at the library reading frantically through law books to figure out how to defend myself. My whole life was turned upside down. I did not understand legalese (lawyer talk), comprehend procedure, or know diddily about courts and judges. With the help of a friend, I scratched out “an answer to the complaint,” “a motion to dismiss,” “a counter complaint,” and “a motion for summary judgment.” Over a few months my knowledge excelled and my confidence grew. On the day of my hearing, I argued pro se and the judge dismissed all charges against me because the plaintiff’s accusations were not founded on fact. But, the judge sustained my counter complaint! What an ordeal! What an education!

One thing I learned is that prayer is much like a legal pleading, and if you will learn to plead your case properly before the High Court of Heaven, your prayers can prevail.

You can prevail in prayer in the day of trouble by properly pleading your case.

1. Plead Obedience to the Summons: In Psalm 50, “the Mighty One, God, the Lord speaks and summons the earth . . . that He may judge his people” (1-4). A summons is a citation ordering a defendant into court to face a charge. Right or wrong, true or false, convenient or inconvenient, if the defendant does not show up for court, presumption of guilt prevails and the complainant will be awarded a judgment.

Here, it is the Judge, the Might One (El), God (Elohim), the Lord (YHWH) who issues the summons. It must be obeyed. When we come before the Throne of Grace, we are not there because of human presumption, but by Divine command. A summons must be answered or the defendant is presumed guilty due in part to the Doctrine of Estoppel by Acquiescence. Prayer is not man’s invention, man’s prerogative, or man’s contrivance. Prayer is simply obedience to an Order of the Court, and we would do well to honor it.

When you pray, acknowledge that you are before the Bench in response to His summons.

2. Plead the Proper Party: “He summons the heaven above, and the earth, that he may judge His people; Gather to Me my consecrated ones, who made a covenant with Me by sacrifice.”

A hearing before a court cannot occur unless the proper parties are present. A proper party is one who has an inherent interest in the subject-matter of the litigation.

Here God calls upon His people to appear in His Court. He calls them “His consecrated ones” (godly ones) and those “who made a covenant with Him.” Are you one of His people? Have you made a covenant with Him? Are you a Party Injured? Then, you are the Proper Party and you have a right to appear in Court and motion the Court to intervene. God has set His love upon you, elected you before the foundation of the world, and washed you in the blood of Calvary. Surely, you have a right to present a motion before the Court.

If you are not “godly” and are not a partaker of the “new covenant,” then you are not the Proper Party and you have no right to approach the Bench!

3. Plead jurisdiction: “Hear, O my people, and I will speak . . . I am God, your God.” Jurisdiction is a term of comprehensive importance. It determines the powers of the courts to inquire into facts, apply laws, make decisions, and declare a judgment. It is the first issue to be decided in any case. Does the court have the authority to hear the case? An American living in the U.S.A. has no duty to the laws of Russia. A New York Court cannot try a Delaware resident. A federal court has no jurisdiction over a private Citizen.

Heaven’s Court has jurisdiction over “the earth” (50:1), the east and west (50:2), “Zion” (50:2), the “heavens” (50:4), “his people” (50:4), the godly (50:5), but the “wicked” have no right to petition the Honorable Court (50:16). If you are God’s child, you are within the jurisdiction of the Court and you have a right to plead your case before the Judge.

4. Plead the Opportunity: The Judge orders, “Call upon me in the day of trouble.” (50:15). Trouble is an opportunity. God cannot deliver a man who is not in trouble, or heal a man who is not sick, enrich a man who is not poor, or forgive a man who is not sinful. Trouble gives you the right to expedite your case; the right for special considerations; and, the right to waive honorable court rules. Do you remember the elections of 1990 when Bush defeated Gore in Florida by only a few hundred votes? Lawyers challenged the election process and motioned the Supreme Court to expedite their case because of the election crisis. The Court dispensed with special publication rules. Instead, the lawyers submitted their briefs on regular 8 ½ x 11 paper. Likewise, if you are in a day of trouble, surely, the Court will waive certain expectations. You haven’t time to tweak your prayers and adjust your motions. Just get into the Courtroom and plead your cause. The day of trouble is a day of opportunity.

5. Plead the Time: “Call upon me in the day of trouble.” Maybe you have a wayward son, or a health crisis, or financial need. Yesterday, you were not in trouble. Today you need deliverance. Tomorrow will be too late. If it is a midnight hour and there are only a few grains left in the hourglass, then plead the time—the day of trouble.

6. Plead the Character of the Honorable Judge: “Call upon me.” In our country the courts are considered incorruptible, and they are! But, the judges sitting on the bench are very corruptible. But, not so with Heaven’s Judge. He is too good to be corrupted. Too righteous to be partial; too holy to be tainted; too gracious to be critical of what may appear to be petty concerns, imperfect prayers, and an imperfect life. Come before His Majesty and say, “Lord, I appeal to You who are too great to change, too good to lie, too compassionate to overlook my plight . . .”

7. Plead the Court’s Order: The Court has ordered you to “Call . . .” in the day of trouble. By calling, you are not being a pest. You are not a nuisance. You are not an inconvenience. Prayer is the proper way of motioning the Court to act. David motioned the Court, “Hear my prayer,” a qal command in Hebrew (Psalm 4:1). It is no mistake that the language of prayer is in the imperative. The petitioner respectfully moves/commands the Court to honor his motion. And, His Court is never closed. Never too busy. Never over scheduled. Never bogged down with cases. He has commanded you to come, and an Order of the Court is not to be ignored. Would He have given the Order if He did not intend to honor it?

8. Plead the Promise: The text says, “ Call . . . and I will deliver you.” The word, “deliver” (#lx, chalats) is a piel verb meaning that extra intensity is intended in the deliverance.

The word “deliver” means “to draw out.” It is translated “tear out the stones” in Leviticus 14:40 supplying the imagery of removing difficult, heavy problems. It is translated “watered garden” in Isaiah 58:11 implying that God will refresh the weary, thirsty soul. It is translated “to present the breast” in Lamentations 4:3. The imagery here is of nursing mother pulling out her breast to give her crying baby milk to drink and comfort to feel.

The phrase “I will” certifies that the Judge will honor His promise. He who is holy and just can be nothing but be faithful and true. The Judge is not poor. “Every creature in the forest” and “every bird in the mountains” and “ the cattle on a thousand hills” are His (50:1-12). The Judge is not unwilling. He has commanded you to “Call.” The Judge is not unable, “for nothing shall be impossible with God” (Luke 1:37). If necessary, He will shake heaven and earth to come to your rescue. He will provide a path through your Red Sea.

The fact that the Judge will deliver is forever settled. Further more saith not. But, what is not settled is the “when” of the deliverance. For this, the supplicant must trust the Wisdom of the Court, for the “spirit of wisdom and understanding” are upon Him (Isaiah 11:2). God is seldom early, never late, and always on time.

9. Plead the Proper Object: “I will deliver you.” Will he deliver everyone else, but not me? The “you” in this verse refers back to “his people,” “my consecrated ones,” “my people” and to “Israel” (50:4, 5, 7). You who have put your faith in Christ, are you not a son of Abraham (Galatians 3:7)? Are you not a member of the “called out ones,” the true Israel of God (Matthew 16:16, Romans 9:6)? Having received Christ are you not now a His child (John 1:12, 13)? Maybe, He will not answer the wicked, but surely He will answer you, a member of His family.

You may say, “But I am flawed. How can God answer me?” Even better! Plead your weakness. It was to an imperfect, flawed, fractured ritualistic people to whom the promise was given (50:8-14). Did not God say to the ailing apostle, “My strength is made perfect in weakness” (2 Corinthians 12:9)?

10. Plead the Purpose of the Court: “I will deliver you, but you shall glorify Me.” You can have the deliverance, but God must have the adoration. You can have your health, but God must have the honor. You have your wealth, but God must receive the worship. You can have your pardon, but God must have the praise. If you are a thief of God’s glory, how can He honor His promise to deliver?

Does God delay? He did with Mary’s prayer for her sick brother (John 11). But, maybe a resurrected Lazarus could bring Him more glory than a recovered Lazarus? Did God wait 14 years to answer the prayer of aging Abraham? Maybe, a child from an old man and an old woman could bring Him more glory than the gift of a child at middle age. Did Jacob’s plea for protection and prosperity happen in the first year of his departure from Canaan? Maybe, an impoverished patriarch with no commodities, two wives, and eleven children could bring Him more glory than a wealthy single bachelor. After defeating Goliath, could not God have made David king of Israel? Maybe, an innocent but vilified fugitive seasoned by years of hardship would make a better king that a na├»ve boyhood king.

Out of the Darkness
Out of the dark forbidding soil
The pure white lilies grow.
Out of the black and murky clouds,
Descends the stainless snow.
Out of the crawling earth-bound worm
A butterfly is born.
Out of the somber shrouded night,
Behold! A golden morn!
Out of the pain and stress of life,
The peace of God pours down.
Out of the nails -- the spear -- the cross,
Redemption -- and a crown! (Source Unknown)

It is not a mistake that a pleading is called, “a prayer” in court. Prayer is much like a legal pleading, and if you will learn to plead your case properly before the High Court of Heaven, your prayers can prevail.

Thursday, May 8, 2008

I'm Tired

At times I have almost jokingly referred to my husband and I as a moving company. I think we about ran out of 'fuel' tonight, though. My friend, who I have helped off and on for a year and a half or so is moving this coming week. Today we did quite a bit of packing and this evening my hubby came and moved a lot of boxes into the garage for next weeks move.
I praise the Lord for the strength He has so graciously given me these past few days. For the past few months I have only been up to my friend's place maybe 1 time or possibly 2 days a week. But with next week the moving days we have been working quite steady to get ready.

I also praise the Lord as I have seen my friend rebounding from the last move. That was done under a tremendous stress level. This time, although moving is always some stress, it has been a joy to watch her almost excited at times over the move. The new place has more room for gardening and that makes her happy too. Actually I believe the Lord led us to some very special buys. We found some 'brand name' roses for an excellent price for her new rose garden. We added some herb plants and some zinnias and a few other flowers for accent to put into the ground around her new home. But perhaps what has blessed me is how I see God healing her woundedness from the last sad betrayal she had been through.

I also praise the Lord for some real blessings and even miracles I have been hearing about over the phone in my own family. God is so good and He is wanting to teach everyone more about Himself. I want to keep learning.

While the moving plans are progressing we are having a revival at our church. I agreed to help with the little children so have had to fit that extra into my schedule as well. The Lord is blessing there in a marked manner.

A few weeks ago we were invited to go to Africa on a short term mission trip to Tanzania in August. When a friend heard we were going there they asked if we would stop to Zimbabwe as well. It is interesting to see what God is doing. We are aso excited to see how God is going to work out the ligistics as well.

I'm tired, but I'm also grateful for the God of mighty miracles who is very busy around here.

May He speak good to you too is my prayer,

Bringer of Peace