Posted in Hiding His Word

Iron Sharpens Iron: A Benefit of Corporate Prayer

Iron sharpeneth iron; so a man sharpeneth the countenance of his friend. ~ Proverbs 27: 17

One benefit of praying with others is this: when we work together in the spirit, gifts that have been hidden within us are revealed and activated. The anointing on us connects with the anointing on someone else and enables us both to step into spiritual positions we could never occupy alone.

A great illustration of that principle is the Old Testament story about Saul. When he was first anointed to be king of Israel by the prophet Samuel, Saul was timid and didn’t appear to be king material. Do you know how God changed him? He changed him by bringing him into contact with anointed people. God used gifts in others to awaken the anointing on Saul and those gifts turned him into another man. To make sure he didn’t miss those connections, Samuel told Saul about them in advance. He let Saul know they would be strategic in his life.

He said: When thou art departed from me to day, then thou shalt find two men by Rachel’s sepulchre in the border of Benjamin at Zelzah; and they will say unto thee, The asses which thou wentest to seek are found: and, lo, thy father hath left the care of the asses, and sorroweth for you, saying, What shall I do for my son? Then shalt thou go on forward from thence, and thou shalt come to the plain of Tabor, and there shall meet thee three men going up to God to Beth–el, one carrying three kids, and another carrying three loaves of bread, and another carrying a bottle of wine: And they will salute thee, and give thee two loaves of bread; which thou shalt receive of their hands. After that thou shalt come to the hill of God, where is the garrison of the Philistines: and it shall come to pass, when thou art come thither to the city, that thou shalt meet a company of prophets coming down from the high place with a psaltery, and a tabret, and a pipe, and a harp, before them; and they shall prophesy: And the Spirit of the Lord will come upon thee, and thou shalt prophesy with them, and shalt be turned into another man. And let it be, when these signs are come unto thee, that thou do as occasion serve thee; for God is with thee ~ 1 Samuel‬ ‭10:2-7‬‬

Usually we think of “signs” as miracles and wonders that come from heaven. But in Saul’s case, the signs that changed his life were people. They were believers who imparted to him certain spiritual things he needed to step into the office of king. That goes to show you how important spiritual connections and relationships are. They change us. They activate spiritual gifts within us. They prepare us for our future. They inspire us to rise to new heights in God. We can walk around for years with supernatural anointing and gifting lying dormant within us like seeds in the ground. But when God sends somebody across our path who is anointed to cultivate them, those seeds in us will begin to sprout. The more we’re with that person, the bigger those seedlings grow.

In my life, I have had a few individuals with that kind of cultivating effect. These carried an anointing to awaken me to the call of God and to help activate my spiritual hunger and gifting in a supernatural way. All of us need the power of these divine connections and God has set in place churches with pastors, teachers, apostles, prophets, and evangelists to meet those needs for you and for me.

And he gave some, apostles; and some, prophets; and some, evangelists; and some, pastors and teachers; For the perfecting of the saints, for the work of the ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ: Till we all come in the unity of the faith, and of the knowledge of the Son of God, unto a perfect man, unto the measure of the stature of the fulness of Christ: ~ Ephesians‬ ‭4:11-13‬

Truly as iron sharpens iron, so a man sharpens the countenance of his friend!

Posted in Hiding His Word

In This Place

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He that dwelleth in the secret place of the most High shall abide under the shadow of the Almighty. I will say of the Lord, He is my refuge and my fortress: my God; in him will I trust. ~ Psalm 91:1-2

In the silence of the early morning, I pause in this place, with God’s living and breathing Word before me.

In this place, the words spoken are first His flowing to my heart and then mine flowing back to His.

In this place, though my world may spin out of control, I remain safe and secure in the Shadow of the Almighty – whose power no enemy can withstand.

In this place, I find the boldness and complete confidence to stand firmly on my declaration – “HE is MY REFUGE and MY FORTRESS!!! HE IS MY GOD, IN WHOM I TRUST!”

In this place full of the Word and flowing with prayer, the enemy is helpless.

In fact, as I pause in this place -the secret place of the Most High, in the very Presence of Jesus – the enemy cannot sit alongside or even come nigh.

In this place, I have life.

I have life more abundantly…in this place!

The thief cometh not, but for to steal, and to kill, and to destroy: I am come that they might have life, and that they might have it more abundantly. ~ John 10:10

Following Peace

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Let us therefore follow after the things which make for peace, and things wherewith one may edify another. ~ Romans 14:19

Peace is always out there and we must make a conscious effort to move toward it.

You can’t drive someone toward peace, only lead them there. Neither will God push you in peace’s direction, but He will lead you there.

To be lead is to follow. So, if you begin to head toward peace, others will surely follow. And those that do not…they will be in your past.

Posted in Hiding His Word

As One in Christ

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For the body is not one member, but many.” ~ 1 Corinthians 12:14

The human body is amazing. Each part is dependent on the other parts. Something as simple as an aching tooth can affect many other parts of the body. While every part of the body has an important role, no one part is independent. All parts work together so that the body can function well as a whole.

It is no surprise then that Paul describes the church as the body of Christ. Followers of Jesus Christ are interrelated with every other member in Christ’s body. Though each believer may be different and unique, each believer is very dependent on all others. Like body parts, church members must work together in unity to help build God’s kingdom.

Sometimes members of the church have a hard time becoming part of the body. By nature, at times, we all resist dependence on others or having others to depend on us. But Paul states very clearly that just as the eye cannot say unto the hand, I have no need of thee” (1 Cor 12:21) neither can anyone in the body of Christ say that to another church member. God has given each of us with gifts and talents for the building up of His body. The church and its members are to serve each other, and the world around us in unity and love as one in Christ.

In this season of celebration of our nation’s independence, I pray for a revelation of freedom to fill us all…freedom that comes through genuine relationship with  Jesus Christ but also freedom that comes when we are dependent on our brothers and sisters and allow them to depend on us.

Posted in Hiding His Word

Do You Need Peace Today?

Whatever you need, the answer can be found in God’s Word, if you take the time to look for it. Below are twenty scriptures to encourage and guide. 

For unto us a child is born, unto us a son is given: and the government shall be upon his shoulder: and his name shall be called Wonderful, Counsellor, The mighty God, The everlasting Father, The Prince of Peace. ~ Isaiah 9:6

 These things I have spoken unto you, that in me ye might have peace. In the world ye shall have tribulation: but be of good cheer; I have overcome the world. ~ John 16:33

 I will both lay me down in peace, and sleep: for thou, Lord, only makest me dwell in safety. ~ Psalm 4:8

The Lord will give strength unto His people; the Lord will bless His people with peace. ~ Psalm 29:11

 And I will give peace in the land, and ye shall lie down, and none shall make you afraid: and I will rid evil beasts out of the land, neither shall the sword go through your land. ~ Leviticus 26:6

To give light to them that sit in darkness and in the shadow of death, to guide our feet into the way of peace. ~ Luke 1:79

These are the things that ye shall do: Speak ye every man the truth to his neighbor; execute the judgment of truth and peace in your gates. ~ Zechariah 8:16

Moreover, I will make a covenant of peace with them; it shall be an everlasting covenant with them: and I will place them, and multiply them, and will set my sanctuary in the midst of them for evermore. ~ Ezekiel 37:26

Depart from evil, and do good: seek peace and pursue it. ~ Psalm 34:14

The Lord lift up His countenance upon thee, and give thee peace. ~ Number 6:26

I create the fruit of the lips; Peace, peace to him that is far off, and to him that is near, saith the Lord; and I will heal him. ~ Isaiah 57:19

Now the Lord of peace Himself give you peace always by all means. ~ 2 Thessalonians 3:16

But the meek shall inherit the earth; and shall delight themselves in the abundance of peace. ~ Psalm 37:11

Mark the perfect man, and behold the upright: for the end of that man is peace. ~ Psalm 37:37

And the work of righteousness shall be peace; and the effect of righteousness quietness and assurance for ever. And my people shall dwell in a peaceable habitation, and in sure dwellings, and in quiet resting places. ~ Isaiah 32:17-18

Peace I leave with you, my peace I give unto you: not as the world giveth, give I unto you. Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid. ~ John 14:27

And the peace of God, which passeth all understanding, shall keep your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus. ~ Philippians 4:7

I will hear what God the Lord will speak: for He will speak peace unto His people, and to His saints. ~ Psalm 85:8

And let the peace of God rule in your hearts, to the which also ye are called in one body; and be ye thankful. ~ Colossians 3:15

Thy faith hath saved thee, go in peace. ~ Luke 7:50

 

My Prayer

Thank You, God, for your Word that encourages and guide. Thank you, Father, for the gift of peace.  Oh, sweet Prince of Peace, may You always reign and rule in our lives.  May Your perfect peace live in our hearts, no matter what conflict is going on around us. May Your peace shine through each of us as a light in this dark and dying world and may it draw the lost, the lonely, the hurting to You. In the precious, magnificent, and holy name of Jesus I pray and for His glory alone.  Amen! Amen!

 

 

Posted in Hiding His Word

Dying Words

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(Although I took a break from posting and working on the blog during the 40 days of prayer and fasting leading to Easter, I did write this article at the end of March for our April church bulletin. I pray it blesses you)

Then said Jesus, “Father, forgive them, for they know not what they do.” ~ Luke 23:34

We know words are powerful and especially dying words. As we go through this Easter season, it is important to remember what Jesus said right before His earthly life ended. Some of His last words, while hanging from the cross, were words of mercy and forgiveness.

Today I want to ask you this – if Jesus Christ could offer a prayer of forgiveness while on the cross for those who were putting Him to death, those who beat Him, those who betrayed Him can you pray a prayer of mercy and forgiveness for those in your life who have hurt or angered you? Despite what you have been through or may be going through today, can you look past it all and extend forgiveness?

Jesus’ last words and His willingness to die on the cross are a powerful example of how you and I are to treat others. We are called to follow His perfect example in every area of our lives. We are called to speak forgiveness and follow through with extending mercy to others whether we feel they deserve it or not. We sure didn’t deserve to be forgiven all our sins, yet Jesus forgave.

The Holy Ghost has challenged me, and I challenge you today to pick up your cross and follow Jesus! Each Easter we remember His death, and we celebrate His resurrection. We remember that He died so we can be forgiven, but He also died that we can now walk in forgiveness toward others.

And be ye kind one to another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, even as God for Christ’s sake hath forgiven you. ~ Ephesians 4:32