He who loves much, gives much. Christianity has always spread by love. There have been times when people who call themselves Christians have taken up arms in the name of the Savior, but that is NOT Christianity. They lied.
Christianity advances by love, not by military conquest. Love conquers all. It is our martyrs who laid down their lives with no resistance who have made Christianity explode around the globe. It is our prayer warriors, who sacrifice hours of playing time to pray, who have stoked revival fire. Care enough, love enough, to pray today.
Rightly, billiescauldron points out this glaring flaw in my last post, Remote Warfare. I was demonstrating similarities between pray-ers and pilots who remotely fly drones to hit targets from far away. You can pray for Iran and blow up the devil. But the analogy breaks down over the basis of Christianity: love. Thanks, Billie!
In your walk with Christ, don’t leave love behind.
You are saved because of God’s love. He sent His Son. As a Christian, you must strive to conform to His image. Love others enough to take time to pray for them.
When you pray for finances in your ministry, let love be the principal basis for prayer. If your ministry grows, more people will be established in Christ.
As technology has advanced rapidly, military drones are transitioning from remotely-piloted to almost completely autonomous. The “pilot” now only programs the mission, hits the “takeoff” button and the computer-generated action-sequencing does the rest. By one account, drone-launched missiles killed up to 1000 people in 2006-09, including 20 leaders of al-Qaeda. The burst of drone use is for one obvious reason: you don’t endanger American lives.
Far away from danger, the pilot wages war.
As Christians, we need no more advances in technology to practice remote warfare. The Holy Spirit never errs in His air strikes (but we are talking about giving life, not death, now). We can reach 1000s of miles instantly for healing, salvation, deliverance, finances, whatever.
Have you prayed for outside of your little circle of local friends? Let’s set the range for Iran, Iraq, Saudi Arabia — and other nations behind the “Iron Veil.” Let’s pray for China that God would continue to stoke revival!
I guess the funny thing is kids playing video games these days are actually training for the Air Force. Praying for souls around the world is no game. We should stop “playing” Christianity and start fulfilling our call to work — at prayer.
Posted in prayer
Tagged 10-40 window, aviation, China, Christianity, drones, God, Holy Spirit, iron veil, Jesus, nations closed to the gospel, pray for salvation, remote warfare, revival in China
Don’t get out of the path.
Without a doubt, Abraham blew it when he tried to “help” God. After not seeing the promise of God fulfilled for more than a decade, Abraham slept with Hagar, his wife’s maidservant, to have the descendant through her.
Oops. Talk about a doozy. Now we can’t have peace in the Middle East as a result. The baby, Ishmael, grew up to fight and cause trouble to the true promised child, Isaac. His descendants, the Arabs, want to wipe Israel off the face of the earth. If only Abraham and Sarah would have had patience…
Herein lies a great lesson for prayer. Hang in there believing for the miracle, and don’t try to “force” the hand of God with an easy, half-baked “answer.” Continue contending for His best, not your compromise.
You can serve God half way, but you won’t get complete blessing. In all, Abraham and Sarah had to wait 25 years (give or take a few) to see their child born. Abraham was 100, and Sarah, 90. God was faithful. If they hadn’t fallen into desperation, the world would be a better place today. Your world will be a better place, if you don’t get frantic for the answer.
It used to be that if a rock star wanted publicity, she’d send a press release to the news media, and these self-constituted arbiters of newsworthiness determined if it should be ignored or published. No longer.
Lady Gaga has 34 million followers on Twitter, the Los Angeles Times a mere 54,000. So Miss Gaga goes straight to the source, the public, without having to worry about trying to impress the intermediary
You too. Go straight to the Source, God
I like attention-getting pics, but this one is not as random as you might think, since it speaks of communication and Jesus. Hahaha!
Himself, without worrying about intermediaries. Jesus taught us to pray to God: “Our Father, who art in Heaven…” It’s good to get a pastor and friends involved in your prayer need, but don’t think for a minute that religious hierarchy authorizes access.
In fact, God’s twiddling His thumbs waiting for you to talk to Him. In Guatemalan Spanish, “twiddling His thumbs” would be translated “scratching His belly button.” God is probably even scratching His belly button, waiting, waiting, waiting.
Go straight to God. Pray. It’s the best.
It’s so real that medical texts have a term for it: psychosomatic disease. The person feels every symptom, but there is no sign of infection. Call it mind tricks.
from blue pueblo
He believes it and has it, though no trace of logical cause can be found.
The patient first believes he is sick. It worsens when he begins to speak about it. Then he acts sick. The doctor gives him a placebo, a sugar pill, and tells him he’ll be well so that he can experience a reversal of symptoms through his belief.
What works to sicken, also works to make well: believe, speak, act. This is not hocus pocus. It is science. It is also Bible. Death and life are in the power of the tongue — Prov. 18:21 KJV. Apparently, it is such a powerful dynamic that it works without the intervention of God.
from Ben Rogers blog
How much more so with God’s intervention! Believe in your heart for your answer. Speak it in prayer. Act on your faith. To me, it makes no sense that the same skeptics who snigger at the positive confession quantify and scientifically classify the negative confession. Or do we only affirm the bad? A Christian affirms the good.
Faith can heal you. Faith can bring needed finances. Faith can answer prayer. If they tongue has the power to make a person psychosomatically sick, then it also has the power to heal.
from Blue Pueblo
You wouldn’t for a minute allow yourself to think the world is flat. You wouldn’t for a minute allow yourself to think the moon is made of cheese. You wouldn’t for a minute allow yourself to think Santa Claus is real.
from Ben Rogers blog
So why do you allow yourself to think what doesn’t line up with the Word of God? What’ true is true. You wouldn’t believe what’s false, even if your finances don’t currently show God’s provision. Or if your body’s symptoms don’t testify to healing.
But the carnal mind is pernicious. It seizes on negativity. If we think disappointment, we could take it to the next level and confess disappointment. Then we become prophets of our own doom. Death and life are in the power of the tongue — Prov. 18:21 KJV. That’s why it so important to confess good, not bad, over your life.
So the next time, unbelief raises its hoary head and starts its rant, make fun of yourself. The Word of God is true and not my “reality.” It is my reality that needs to come in line with Eternal Truth, not the other way around. Prayer is positive confession, but it is also more than that because it gets God involved!
In Joshua’s day, it was a choice between Baal or Jehovah. In our day, it is a choice between doubt or belief.
Step up in your faith!
But if serving the Lord seems undesirable to you, then CHOOSE for yourselves THIS DAY whom you will serve, whether the gods your forefathers served beyond the River, or the gods of the Amorites, in whose land you are living. But as for me and my household, we will serve the LORD. — Josh. 24:15 NIV my caps.
If you doubt, the hordes of naysayers will applaud you and show you the path of reckless abandon. If you believe, it will be a lonely, hard, uphill road.
The results of doubt are disaster. The much-admired atheist Frederick Nietzsche died insane (brought on by syphilis?), fighting against a carriage driver who was whipping his horses. A tree is recognized by its fruit — Matt. 12:33b NIV.
Aside from total doubt (atheist, agnostic) there is partial doubt. This is the “believer” who does not believe for healing or for answers to prayers. This is a midroader, neither an unbeliever, nor a total, radical, Bible-believing Christian. I find myself constantly trying to wrestle my way out of this quandary.
The addict struggles to believe he can be free. The failure struggles to believe he can be a success. The sick struggles to believe for healing. The pioneer pastor struggles to believe for people and finances. Write your circumstance here: ____________ struggles to believe.
Belief is a daily choice. It requires effort. To not believe, requires no effort. That’s why prayer and Bible-reading in the morning is such a good idea: it fills you with faith. Choose to believe today.
Posted in faith
Tagged Bible, choices, Christianity, failure, Faith, healing, hope, inspiration, Joshua, miracles, prayer, success, thoughts
from Blue Pueblo
Pain brings change.
I am so resistant to change that I leave God no other option but to let me go through difficult circumstances to bring me where He wants me. I’m screaming bloody murder the whole way. Then, when I find myself in His blessing, I smile and say, “Oh, this is where You were bringing me!” The pain dissipates; pleasure fills my heart.
It’s okay to be down now. Maybe you’ve lost everything… your house, your family, your ministry. Don’t drink to
from Flojohn Travels
forget. Keep slogging through the Dark Valley. On the other side, you will come out into Wonderland. Life goes by cycles; you can’t always be on top of the world; you won’t always be on the bottom.
After a valley in his life, Mike Lynch says, “I never want to go through THAT again, and I wouldn’t wish that on anybody, but actually it’s made me what I am today.”
Believe in yourself. Believe in God. After the war comes rebuilding and prosperity. As one blogger says: Become better, not bitter. Current circumstances could drown you, or you could learn to swim. Tread water long enough in the Noah-like flood, and you’ll win a gold medal at the Olympics.
Incrementally improve. When the blessing hits, it will come suddenly, but it will have been through incremental improvements.
Posted in Financial Talk
Tagged Christianity, church, depression, Faith, God, God's will, hope, inspiration, Jesus, ministry, prayer, Psalm 23, valleys
Nobody escapes it. Each has his own struggle.
This one struggles with money. That one struggles with addiction. He has no self-esteem. She is losing her marriage. Injustice stalks us all; don’t think anyone leads a charmed life.
But if the common denominator is struggle, there are too many options for numerators. He masks pain with rash behavior, abandonment to hedonism. She locks into power struggles, putting down others to plop herself on top.
I pray. I avoid the self-destructive “remedies.” And pointless one-upping.
It seems the vast majority go everywhere except the Answer. I go to God, the answer. Call to me and I will answer you — Jer. 33:3a NIV. Despair not your struggles; everybody has them. Just go to the Answer.
Posted in prayer
Tagged belief, Christianity, Faith, finances, God, hope, inspiration, Jesus, problem, solution, struggle
Activity is good. Better is to produce. Still better is to reproduce.
from Ben Rogers blog
Being busy is good. But mere activity could be just spinning your wheels in gravel. With production, you have something to show for your work.
But production is still inferior to “reproduction.” As Christians, we are ultimately called to reproduce Christians, not just “produce” things like manuals and seminars. Reproduction is the highest rung.
It’s also the hardest. With hard work and competent strategy, we get from activity to production. But only God can bring about reproduction. (Just ask couples afflicted with sterility!)
That’s why you shouldn’t just sprinkle prayer on top of your ministry like sugar. You should make it a main ingredient, like flour.
Remember, the disciples fished all night without catching anything. Then Jesus sent them out once more, and when they threw the nets, they were so full they were ripping!
Posted in prayer
Tagged activity, Bible, Christianity, church, Faith, God, Jesus, ministry, pastors, production, Reproduction
A key to success for the business administrator is to trust his employees and colleagues. He runs himself ragged who thinks no one else will get it right and so he has to do everything himself. He also fails. You need to depend on dependable people. You multiply your impact when you learn to delegate.
So why won’t you delegate to God? That’s prayer. Give all your worries and cares to God, for he cares about you — 1 P. 5:7 New Living Translation.
You diehard workaholic will burn out with your own efforts. You are so limiting your impact by not praying more. Can’t you trust God to do better than you?
What should be delegated to God? Everything. (I’m not saying you do no work in your ministry, but I am saying you leave all the success up to Him.) And don’t go about trying to fire God. And don’t give Him completion dates (although if your church rent is due on a certain date, it might good to pray along those lines). He’ll get it done at the perfect moment!
Literally, you’re not delegating to God enough. You’re retaining too much control of your ministry. Go ahead and work, but pray plenty!
Posted in prayer
Tagged Bible, Christianity, church, Faith, God, inspiration, Jesus, leadership, life, lifestyle, random, thoughts, trust god
Maybe Samson wasn’t muscle-bound at all. To the contrary, the Bible states that it was the power God that came upon him and enabled him to perform Herculean feats. But after Samson violated the last remaining distinctive (having his hair cut off), God’s Spirit left him and he became a wimp.
What distinguishes you as a Christian and sets you apart from a person who doesn’t know God? I hope prayer does.
Most of the “signs” of a believer in the Bible are inwardly, not outwardly. (Even circumcision was a a
Not muscles, but the power of God enabled Samson. You can access that same power.
very private sign!) The believer knew it and no one else. Carrying a Bible and wearing a Sunday hat don’t make you a Christian.
Only you know how much you are praying. Jesus prayed. His disciples prayed. They have left us this legacy. A significant portion of our day is to be dedicated to prayer. I shoot for at least an hour. A friend of mine gets three. (Praise God for her!)
Posted in Christianity
Tagged believe, Bible, Christianity, church, devotional, Faith, God, Jesus, ministry, power of God, prayer, Samson
The praying Christian triumphs over insurmountable odds. One of you routs a thousand, because the LORD your God fights for you, just as he promised. — Josh. 23:10 NIV. Joshua recounts the extraordinary victories God wrought to the wandering Israelites as they settled into the Promised Land.
Because they carefully depended upon God, they achieved the impossible. Prayer is careful dependence on God. Prayerlessness is reckless and baseless self-confidence. It’s no
from Adeel Butt
wonder we fall on our face when he neglect prayer.
You will overcome 1:1000 odds — if you pray. Don’t fret about mounting bills as you try to establish God’s promise for your calling, don’t panic and surrender, don’t bail out. If you remain steadfast, God will deliver you. Trust and wait confidently in the Lord. While you wait for the miracle, keep praying and believing.
Posted in prayer
Tagged belief, Bible, Christianity, Faith, God, hope, inspiration, insurmountable odds, Jesus, ministry, pastors, random, thoughts
My life with Dianna has been the best: 22 years.
Posted in Marriage
Tagged Bible, Christianity, Faith, God, inspiration, Jesus, love, random, relationships, thoughts, valentine, valentine's
Pain is off the charts these days. I believe the multiplication of evil prophesied by Jesus for the last days is to blame. There’s more disintegration of families, more sin abounding, so hearts are hurting everywhere from betrayal. Where love is supposed to be, rejection abounds.
English obviously correlates “cry” and “cry out” in the translation of the Bible. O my God, I cry out by day, but you do not answer, by night, and am not silent — Psalm 22:2 NIV. Distress
from The Landy – Out and About
is associated with shouting. Our desperation turns to prayer, our anguish to hope. Prayer, if anything, is pathos.
I asked God for His toughest assignment because I was cocksure of the solution: prayer. Then He allowed me a trial that blindsided me and left me staggering and confused. I had to laugh at myself: I got what I asked for, and then I didn’t know what to do.
Prayer is the outpouring of pain, a solution, not a reveling in hurt. Unlike cutting or pity-partying, it doesn’t celebrate the ouch in an upside-down way; it heals it. Turn not your anguish into alcoholism. You have a God above you who loves you and cares for you.
Posted in prayer
Tagged Bible, Christianity, cutting, depression, Faith, God, Holy Spirit, hope, inspiration, Jesus, love, pain, self-harm, suicide
Why is it so hard to do the easy thing?
Prayer is easy. But there are 57 kabillion distractions that seem more important.
The hard thing is to do your own effort. But we Americans are always gung-ho to roll up the sleeves.
I should know what I’m talking about. I spent more than a decade of missionary work majoring in my own effort. When that didn’t work too well, I “discovered” what I knew all along: God answers prayer.
I started praying more, and the results were spectacular.
Don’t get me wrong. I didn’t become a couch potato Christian. I still worked: I taught, I preached, I evangelized, I visited the brethren. But I cut down somewhat the hectic schedule and dedicated a more significant portion of time to prayer. No longer was prayer perfunctory, get-thru-it-as-quickly-as-possible. It became the focal point of the day.
But you have to clear your schedule, remove distractions, and concentrate on God. That means you turn off your electric devices to be able to turn on your spiritual device! Ha!
Prayer is easy. God works for you. Yet it is hard to pick this option. It is easier for us to try to work ourselves when we want results. That’s our basic human nature. Thus prayer is hard because it’s counterintuitive. Every fiber in our being screams that we are wasting our time.
Posted in prayer
Tagged believe, Bible, Christianity, devotion, Faith, God, Holy Spirit, inspiration, Jesus, missionary, missions, random, thoughts
The world is in your hands. Will you pray?
My seminary emphasized God’s sovereignty. They followed it to its extreme logical conclusion: the intercession group prayed 15 minutes a week.
FIFTEEN MINUTES A WEEK??!?#&?
Their theology was good. Their practice bad. Jesus Himself spent whole nights in prayer. If the Son of the LIVING GOD needed loads of prayer, how much more ourselves?
Sovereignty means nobody, nothing stops God. Everything is part of his total-control. Carried to an extreme, hyper-Calvinism rules out the need for evangelism since God already has destined for salvation those who will get saved. Never mind that Jesus told us to go and evangelize.
My seminary didn’t rule out evangelism, and they didn’t rule out prayer in theory — but they sure did in the practice. While I believe in God’s sovereignty, at the same time I believe my prayers make a difference in the war for the world. I’m constantly reproaching myself for prayerlessness.
We should not discredit the doctrine of God’s sovereignty, but it lives in tension with calls to action in the Bible. (The atheists have a field day with this doctrine!) I’m comfortable with the uncomfortable tension. Stay calm and keep praying.
Nobody else has won 4 Golden Balls. Argentine Lionel Messi netted an astounding 73 goals in 2012, and won the best world soccer star for a record number of times.
And perennial runner-up Xavi Hernandez bowed out with humility. But the voices calling for Xavi to win at least one Golden Ball are many and loud. He’s very much a part of the reason why Messi does so well: he threads passes through nettlesome defensive lines perfectly to the feet of the forward magician.
And who won the last World Cup? Spain — thanks in large part to Xavi, who admirably pays respects to his Barca teammate. Alas, the accolades go to goals.
Service — as always — gets overlooked by the world. Xavi provides the service of brilliant play-making, masterminding the game, unlocking stalwart defenses with dizzying and dazzling footwork.
If you want to be great in the kingdom of God, you must serve everybody. God will be rewarding servers. It won’t be a “world” cup though. It’s either gonna be a Heaven Cup or a Win-the-World-for-Christ Cup.
Posted in Christianity
Tagged Bible, Faith, God, helping, inspiration, Jesus, Messi, prayer, serve, serving others, volunteerism, Xavi Hernandez
I was reminded how lonely and hard is pioneering a church. You leave the loving mother church and go with your family to a new city and pass out flyers and knock on doors to invite people to a small building, usually a park room that’s cold and smells bad.
You do this for years and eventually rent a
Pastor Mike Jones and Pastor John Murless coordinate passing out the flyers
storefront. You work night and day. You have to support your family with a job, but your real job is pastoring, and you neglect your own family to take care of your the fledgling spiritual family. Forget about your own entertainment. There’s none of that.
What you long for — and what you least get — is
We came across this random shopping cart with tumble weeds in it. I teased the locals that tumbleweeds is what you shop for in the High Desert.
some support. People come into the church wanting to be served, not wanting to serve — at least at first. Well, I joined a Saturday outreach in Apple Valley, the high desert city practically founded by cowboy Will Rogers about 100 miles out of L.A.
We knocked on doors inviting people to an
Frank Cervantes enjoys the chili dogs served between outreaches
evening concert and revival services. One lady pulled up with a caravan of three cars loaded with family. She gave her heart to the Lord that night.
We live in the age in which everyone wants to be the still-undiscovered internet sensation who swoops onto independent fame and riches as soon as our self-importance is
This girl was a trooper. She walked miles in both outreaches and stayed up late enjoying the concert. She never got tired, never cried.
It’s better to support a cause greater than yourself. It’s better to help. When we bless and serve others, God takes care of us.
The prayer warrior is a support man. The troops on the battle front desperately need the support of the military’s infrastructure. There is nothing less important about being support crew.
Posted in Christianity
Tagged Apple Valley, California, Christian Fellowship Ministries, church, God, High Desert, inspiration, Jesus, Lord, ministry, pastors, pioneering, Will Rogers
She showed up mysteriously and asked to be allowed to pray for him. Troubled by poor decisions and an acrimonious divorce, the youth received her warmly enough. Though it seemed strange to him, he let her pray in his room with him there. After the first session, there was another, and then another, and then another. Sometimes he cried, and he didn’t know why.
She was being led by the Holy Spirit. Just barely known to the family, this saint helped the youth carry a burden he didn’t know how to handle. And at the end of the prayer sessions, he was a transformed man. He no longer acted like a rebel. He became a leader for his brothers, in his school. Everyone marveled at the radical change of heart.
God changes people, and He
uses prayer warriors like this lady. They don’t follow an agenda. They have no personal ambition. They feel promptings in their heart and follow them. The uncomprehending regard them as nutcases. But psychologist, no counselor, no life coach can achieve better results.
Who gives, gives, gives and gives? Answer: the prayer warrior.
Love drives him to his knees. Desperation keeps him there. He is the unknown engine of revival, working unseen to change the winds of history. Behind every conversion, there was somebody praying. Behind every miraculous offering getting the church out of debt, a prayer warrior did battle.
He goes unheralded. Others get the credit. Still he prays — and Heaven rains in response. No one claps him on the back. No one thanks him. In fact, people wonder why he’s “wasting time” praying.
A new command I give you: Love one another. As I have loved you, so you must love one another — John 13:34 NIV. Prayer is one special way to love.
Surrounded by opponents, forward Rob Ashcraft dribbles toward goal
Untiringly aggressive, Tex Hagoski shut them down in the field.
They played their hearts out — and at the final whistle Lighthouse Christian Academy had executed the most improbable upset in the league, defeating touch-perfect New Roads 3-2 in varsity soccer.
With girls, freshmen, and inexperienced players on the team, LCA Saints are
Only our team has girls in our league, but with Tori Scribner it doesn’t make a difference.
understandably bottom-dwelling fish. But somehow this season, they believed in themselves, winning four and tying one. Friday’s game was the crown jewel of the season. New Roads left the field in despair.
These kids who played with unaccustomed verve teach us a lesson in life.
Robert Ashcraft was unstoppable.
No matter how many failures, no matter what the man-to-man analysis, you can prevail with spunk and belief.
When you go to prayer today, when you minister, expect the victory. Whatever your shortcomings, whatever your handicaps, remember God grants triumph. Faith is key. Last year, we lost every single game.
For the full story, read http://www.thelighthousechristianacademy.com/saints-embarrass-in-big-upset/
Posted in faith
Tagged Bible, Christian school, Christianity, church, God, high school soccer, inspiration, Jesus, life, lifestyle, Lighthouse, Lighthouse Christian Academy, Los Angeles, ministry, soccer
Rob Scribner then
My pastor, Rob Scribner, tried out for professional football to prove he couldn’t do it.
He just liked it. But he thought he wasn’t good enough. Because of hard work, he wound up on the team, playing for the then-LA Rams from 1973 to 1976. A lot of other guys didn’t even try out because they thought they wouldn’t make it.
Fear of failure is a major problem. Whatever you long to do but are afraid of doing, that is what you should do.
Pastor Rob Scribner now
If we all did the things we are capable of doing, we would literally astound ourselves. — Thomas Edison
The explosion of “fantasy” — sports, Second Life, etc. — is illustrative. People want more but are afraid to live it.
Christian, when you overcome fear, you become dangerous to the devil.
Posted in inspiration
Tagged believe in dreams, Christianity, church, dreaming, failure, Faith, fear of failure, football, God, Jesus, ministry, overcoming, overcoming fear of failure, pastor, prayer, Rams, success, Thomas Edison
Why do you gloat? You act proud of not believing in God. You call yourself open-minded, unfettered by religion, etc.
But I don’t see the higher moral ground of not believing in God because it’s as easy as giving up — and there’s no heroism in surrendering. It is enough that the devil assails our faith constantly. It is enough that it is hard to muster faith in the midst of adversity. And then the intellectual world constantly bombards us with darts of discouragement.
It would be easy for me to give up, to give place to the negativity inside me, to cease from faith and blame God (called lack thereof). It is a struggle to believe for finances, for healing, for restoration. To me, struggling against unbelief is heroic. Losing faith is easy — sorry, no kudos for that.
If you are fighting for faith, you are my brother. If you are an atheist, you are my friend, but I don’t understand you.
Posted in inspiration
Tagged atheism, belief, believe, Christ, Christianity, church, existentialism, Faith, God, life, lifestyle