Saturday, March 31, 2012

Mar | 31 | Of Gnats, Camels and Ice Cream Cones

Key Word:- FREEDOM

Title:- Of Gnats, Camels and Ice Cream Cones

Matthew 23:24 Blind guides, who strain out a gnat and swallow a camel!

May I share with you some of the interesting laws from the fine State of Kentucky? For example, did you know that it is illegal for a man to purchase a hat unless his wife is with him? In Frankfort Kentucky, it absolutely forbidden to shoot off a policeman’s tie, and in Lexington, it is illegal to carry an ice-cream cone in your pocket! It’s bizarre I know, but we can at least be thankful that Kentucky’s State Law still insists that “Everyone must take a bath at least once a year.” Phew! My favorite law of all though is that, “No female shall appear in a bathing suit on any highway within this state, unless she be escorted by at least two officers or unless she be armed with a club.” Crazier still though, an amendment to the above legislation reads: “The provisions of this statute shall not apply to females weighing less than 90 pounds nor exceeding 200 pounds, nor shall it apply to female horses.” Let me assure you that the people of Kentucky are sweet and ‘right friendly’ folk. I have no further comment.

It would be fascinating to trace the origin of these pieces of legislation. After all, apart from the sticky mess, surely there must have been a good reason to make a law about ice-cream cones not being in your pocket, though for the life of me I cannot think what it might be? However, someone did recently tell me that horse thieves (Kentucky is horse country) would in days gone by, lead some expensive stock out of their fields and into waiting horse boxes by sticking an ice-cream cone in their pocket! “What am I doing officer? What me steal a horse? No sir, the beast just followed me in here! What do you mean what do I have in my pocket?”

Husbands, fathers, wives, foremen, supervisors, team leaders, coaches, whoever we are, we are lawmakers of some kind or another. If we don’t make them for others, we certainly make them for ourselves, and my oh my, what a heavy yoke they can be; even yokes of iron! Friends, let’s be careful, not to restrict our freedom. Let’s be careful to let go of rules which we have made for others and ourselves that like in the great State of Kentucky, actually no longer apply. Let’s be careful not to add to Scripture. Let’s get these curses removed from our own lives and our churches' constitutions. Let’s be careful not to live in the darker side of insignificance.

Listen: - "Take My yoke upon you and learn from Me, for I am gentle and lowly in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For My yoke is easy and My burden is light.” Matt 11:29-30

Pray: - Lord, help me let go of the insignificance of gnat straining and the strain of camel swallowing that at last, I might dance in Your light burdens of this day, amen and amen!

Mar | 31 | Stones of Fire

Dream Word – PREPARE

Ezekiel 28:14
You walked back and forth in the midst of fiery stones. NKJV

Stones of Fire

The Old Celtic legend says, that this particular saint had power over wild beasts, and in particular, had power over ‘Chrysalids’ a type of gigantic cow, which was of use to him as a kind of ancient 'U- Haul' and milk truck all in one. This particular cow had been put under the care and oversight of a wild wolf, who one day came and prostrated himself before the saint, repentant and forlorn, as a passing King had killed his charge for food. The king, having placed pieces of the cow in a cooking pot, despite the fierceness of the fires set under it could not get the water to boil! Thus the king, discerning both the power of God and their culpability in killing the saint’s large cow, eventually also came, and like the wolf, prostrated himself before the saint, as he and his entourage sought both his forgiveness and his protection from God’s wrath. These two things, St. Brynach provided, and to prove the efficiacy of his word, Brynach raised the giant cow from the dead, restoring him to the care of the wild wolf. For such devoutness, magnanimity and power, the king gave St. Brynach land for a monastery and church and also freedom from taxation to boot, and frankly, who wouldn’t! Interestingly, it was this same land, to which an angel of the Lord had directed Brynach to proceed to, as he was praying on the mount of his visitation, which is now named, Carn Ingli, or the Mount of Angels. This marvellous and still mystical region in the West of Wales, from which the magical blue rocks of the Neolithic masterpiece we have come to know as Stonehenge, were once hewn and quarried, was apparently first footed and owned by the angels and became to all spiritual peoples, a listening post, a meeting place, indeed, a place of practical business between the material and spiritual realms. Wales is a strange place!

In noting God’s delight in all things material, I have noted from the Scripture, God’s particular fascination and delight with untouched stone, stone shaped only by those four distinct tools at His command and in His hand. That is, time and water, wind and weather. The Celts might have said that ‘These four tools make shapes among the rocks and amidst the standing stones, and in forming an interface between the spiritual and material realms, they scoop out conduits of power, make places of interaction and interface, and allow heaven to touch the earth.’

In the same way dear friends, God takes the passing of time, the wind of adversity, the water of His sanctification and the weather of our journey, to rightly shape His living stones, His present saints, the church of His Own Dear Son, to change them into a listening post, even a proclaiming place of power, where heaven can touch the earth once more. Surely, when the living stones of Christ and the priests of the Most High God, gather in the standing circle of His love, surely then, from within that sacred place and out of that true and magical Royal Blue Kingdom, anything is possible and anything can happen? From there, maybe even wolves could begin to care for giant cows again and the kings of the earth could come to us, for protection and for provision.

Stonehenge is being excavated once more, that its secrets may be found, whilst the church in these ancient lands and of these ancient lands, continues in its horrific decline into uncared for laughability. It is time that the spiritual and the material once again meet together in the church of the living God.

Listen: - But He answered and said to them, "I tell you that if these should keep silent, the stones would immediately cry out." Luke 19:40 NKJV.

Pray:- So set a fire underneath Your standing stones O God, the heat of which would crack open our clam like mouths to speak forth the sweetest of praise to the greatest of names on the earth, under the earth and in the earth and in that great name of heaven we so confidently and rightly pray to you and shout out tonight. Jeeeeeeeeeeeeeeesus!

Friday, March 30, 2012

Mar | 30 | Caveat Emptor

Key Word:- PROMISE

Title:- Caveat Emptor

2 John 10,11 If anyone comes to you and does not bring this doctrine, do not receive him into your house nor greet him; for he who greets him shares in his evil deeds.

The British Parliament today in 1735 passed an act forbidding its North American colonies to trade with anyone other than Britain and we all know the end of that little plan was a tea party in Boston harbour! Interestingly enough though, throughout the Cold War and even today, the United States keeps its own list of unacceptable trading partners that not only will it not deal with, but also that it requires its partners not to deal with either! Superpowers eh, past or present it makes no difference! They’re all trying to rule the world. Don’t you just love ‘em?

In the early days of the New Testament, when bed and breakfast accommodation was provided by the church for every itinerant preacher; teacher and evangelist that passed through town, it became easy to accidentally sustain purveyors of false teaching. Indeed, out of love and honour no doubt, many a good night of free board and lodging was gained by these ‘Wandering Stars.’

The great 'Apostle of Love', the kind and caring landlord and adopted son of Mary the mother of Jesus, never the less takes an inhospitable view regarding these same travelling teachers of false doctrine. Now, we must be very careful of how and to whom we apply these particular verses today, lest sheep from His flock go cold and hungry, and lest the honest hospitality of holy hosts, by fear of transgression, is totally terminated! So, note that these particular verses then, speak against teachers who are against orthodoxy, being hosted by Christians with itching ears, and maybe divisive motives. “Be careful now” says John, “You may lose your reward. Be careful now, you may even partake of their sins.”

The succoring of these wandering stars is not honest intellectual soul searching and discovery, neither is it a journey into God, but rather, it is sin! Yes, John calls it sin! John even calls it, anti-Christ!

Maybe some of us should take a leaf out of the ‘Super Power’ trading manual and begin to cut our own wandering star enabling ways? Let us beware whom we truly trade with. “Caveat Emptor! Caveat Emptor!” I cry to you today! “BUYER BEWARE!”

Listen: - For many deceivers have gone out into the world who do not confess Jesus Christ as coming in the flesh. 2 John 8:7a

Pray: - Lord, help me to do right, and to hold on to my reward. Help me not to shipwreck my own faith, or the faith of others. Lord, don’t allow me to enable Your enemies in any shape or form, amen.

Mar | 30 | Crushing The Cockroaches of Crowd Pleasing

Dream Word – INTEGRITY

1 Samuel 18:7-9 So the women sang as they danced, and said: "Saul has slain his thousands, and David his ten thousands." Then Saul was very angry, and the saying displeased him; and he said, "They have ascribed to David ten thousands, and to me they have ascribed only thousands. Now what more can he have but the kingdom?" So Saul eyed David from that day forward. NKJV

Crushing The Cockroaches of Crowd Pleasing

Did you know that our sinful appetites get worried when the source of their sustenance becomes lessened in some way, become if you will, even somewhat inaccessible compared to how previously open the source once was? This wobbling worry now manifest in our sinful appetites, if not averted by full and renewed access to the source of sustenance, can quickly turn such sinful appetites not only to quivering fear, but then to bitterness, anger, hate and eventually murdering madness, for sinful appetites, must at all costs, get back to the source of their sustenance. At all costs.

King Saul was a crowd watcher, ney, more than that, King Saul was a crowd pleaser, even a crowd sucker if you will, his most sinful appetites, gaining strength and sustenance from the fickle crowd’s vocal approbation and so, when this same large teeted, local crowing, mass of humanity, the source of his sinful appetite, poured their milk of praise more over David than they did over the bad and sad King Saul, mad trouble was a brewing! Yes siree, raving, insane, open to the demonic lunacy was a crackling away under the hot coals of Saul’s terrified and perpetually hungry little sinful heart.

I thoroughly dislike reading about the life of King Saul, for when I do so, I hear and feel the cockroach like scurrying of the same darkness which resides too much still within me, as it flees to hide under the rocks of my heart, from the light of the terrible texts which shines so clearly upon them, revealing them for the black dung beetles which they truly are. Never the less, this exposure to the light is a good exercise and providing the source of the of the sustenance of my own sinful appetites are removed, even if they are but crumbs, this good exercise can become a profitable exercise, as my sinful appetites will begin to die in this textual lighting. Far better though, that when once recognized, these same sinful appetites are immediately crushed underneath our well booted and stamping feet. Far better we kill them quick by so thoroughly stamping them out! Acknowledgement with confession and repentance with stamping substance, have always been the best cocktails of extermination for such sinful infestations. Try it.

Maybe first though, you need to see the infestation. So let me ask you tonight, what darkness rises in you when you are publicly lowered and somewhat lightly esteemed? Yes, when the wind of fickle change, bows the wheat like heads of the milling masses which once sang your praises, all at once to now lay their heads in the opposite direction to you, what darkness rises in you, in response? Preacher, Pastor, leader, oh woman of renown, what darkness rises in you, when the crowd stops feeding you the bread you think you so richly deserve and always believe you so rightly crave?

Listen: - Then Saul sought to pin David to the wall with the spear, but he slipped away from Saul's presence; and he drove the spear into the wall. So David fled and escaped that night. Saul also sent messengers to David's house to watch him and to kill him in the morning. 1 Samuel 19:10-11 NKJV.

Pray:- So my Lord, my sinful appetites will always try to kill the King of selfless love, residing in my heart. Despite my revulsion to the sound of the scurrying within my soul, Lord, send the light! And with it, send a big pair of size nine boots. Then my lord, send the power and resolve to set my feet to stomping, in your great name I ask it, amen and amen.

Thursday, March 29, 2012

Mar | 29 |The Sweet Singer

Key Word:- LOVE

Title:- The Sweet Singer

Song of Songs 1:2 Let him kiss me with the kisses of his mouth…  

Charles Wesley died today in 1788. The co-founder of Methodism, he was indeed one of the most prolific poets of the English language. In 1736, after serving as secretary to the Governor of Georgia, he returned to England “broken in spirit by misrepresentations and accusations of scandal at the hands of unprincipled people.” However, it was then he found Christ and became a preacher, some say, a preacher even on par with the famous George Whitfield himself and so much so, that he was named, the 'Sweet Singer of Methodism.’

What was Charles’ secret source of power, his secret source inspiration? It is too easy to say God the Holy Spirit, though in saying so, we would be absolutely correct! So, may I venture my own observation here, for over the years, having observed many people of power and passion, the most successful and history-making folk of this group, all possess one distinct thing lacking in others, that is, ‘They are lovers!’ It’s as simple as that, they are lovers of Jesus. Not with head knowledge mind you but with an open and bruised heart. They are broken people moved by His love. When they speak of their ‘Beloved,’ like Jeremiah of old, their eyes become fountains of tears, their voices crack and struggle like an old car ascending a steep hill; for they are so full of emotion, that they can hardly speak of His dear name; they can hardly express His all consuming love for them, they are thankful to know Him, longing to see Him, deliriously desirous even, of a better country, where He who their soul loves, waits expectantly for them; and they know it friend; and most of all, they know Him!

Let us woo Jesus all the more then. Let us become the Sweet Singers of His love, that we too might fall in passionate love with Him again.

Listen: - Charles Wesley dictated these lines to his wife, when on his death bed: - “In age and feebleness extreme, Who shall a helpless worm redeem? Jesus my only hope Thou art, Strength of my failing flesh and heart, O, could I catch a smile from Thee, And drop into eternity!”

Pray: - Your name is ointment poured forth; Therefore the virgins love you. Draw me away! Draw me away. SOS 1:2

Mar | 29 | Messing With The Marabouts

Dream Word – DANGER

Exodus 7:11-13 But Pharaoh also called the wise men and the sorcerers; so the magicians of Egypt, they also did in like manner with their enchantments. For every man threw down his rod, and they became serpents. But Aaron's rod swallowed up their rods. And Pharaoh's heart grew hard, and he did not heed them, as the Lord had said. NKJV

Messing With The Marabouts

One of the dominant characteristics of Islam in Medieval North Africa and Algeria in particular, was the cult of holy men, or maraboutism.

The Marabouts were believed to possess ‘baraka,’ that is, divine grace, (sounds like a president) and this was reflected in their amazing ability to perform miracles! Recognized as being both just and spiritual men, these Marabouts often had extensive followings both locally and regionally and therefore great influence along with it! To that end, when Algeria was under the domination of French colonialism, it was these same Marabouts, who using their great influence and backing up their spiritual rhetoric and liberation theology with signs and wonders, almost stirred the region up a bloody uprising. I say almost, because France averted the uprising with some other signs and wonders.

In 1856, the French response to such ‘revolution’ was not in terms of military might, but in the sending in a simple person called Jean-Eugène Robert-Houdin, a well known magician from the city of Blois. When Robert-Houdin met the Marabouts, his magical ability was simply that much more better than the ‘signs and wonders’ of the Algerian ‘holy men,’ and with their magical might now put to open shame and in subjection to the more powerful French Magician and Magic, the Marabouts lost their influence and thus the uprising was quelled without a single shot. (Well actually it was quelled with one shot and with Robert-Houdin catching it in his teeth, but that’s another story for another night!).

The kingdoms of this world can be that much more easily overcome, if the conquerors of those lands, possess simply a better box of tricks. You might carry that box of tricks in a the back of a wagon, or carry them hid up your sleeve or even buried in the bowels of a Tomahawk Missile but they are still tricks! Yes, nice or incredibly nasty, they remain still nothing but tricks to mock and to subjugate inferior and frightened folk.

We can be so impressed by the power that these boxes of tricks seem to offer us that we might even want to get some ourselves! Maybe even change our name in honour of the great trickster, say from Erik Weisz to Harry Houdini and then set up our own impressive travelling show and put the wind up a few other feeble and frightened folk impressed by tricksters.

Ungodly rulers always have counterfeit power, always have a better box of tricks to dupe the people into following their will. When the real and God appointed leaders turn up, all they have is a shepherd's staff and that alone will swallow up all the snakes and part all the rivers into the promised land. Don’t be impressed by boxes of tricks.

Listen: - "Return, O backsliding children," says the Lord;"for I am married to you. I will take you, one from a city and two from a family, and I will bring you to Zion. And I will give you shepherds according to My heart, who will feed you with knowledge and understanding. Jeremiah 3:14-15 NKJV.

Pray:- Lord, though they be so very impressive, help us discern the charlatan. Then Lord, send us leaders, gifts from on high, endued with power from high, to lead us into Beulah land. In Jesus name I pray, amen.


Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Mar | 28 | There, We Saw Giants!

Key Word:- TRUST

Title:- There, We Saw Giants!

 Numbers 13:32 “The land through which we have gone as spies is a land that devours its inhabitants, ...."

“Good evening,”
said long time CBS Evening News anchor Walter Cronkite on the day of the partial meltdown of the Three Mile Island nuclear reactor today in 1979. He continued, “It was the first step in a nuclear nightmare; as far as we know at this hour, no worse than that. However, a government official said that a breakdown in an atomic-power plant in Pennsylvania today is probably the worst nuclear accident to date. There was no apparent serious contamination of workers but a nuclear safety group said that radiation inside the plant is at eight times the deadly level; so strong that after passing through a three-foot-thick concrete wall, it can be measured a mile away.”

The incident at Three Mile Island could have been another Chernobyl, or worst still, most of the North East part of Pennsylvania and beyond could have been incinerated in a nuclear explosion! Yet, despite accidents and errors, the fail-safe systems did in fact work. Indeed today, though the faulty reactor has remained inoperative, reactor No1, in the same plant, has since 1985 functioned at 100% efficiency, becoming even the most efficient reactor in the USA. There was no nuclear nightmare! Yet as far I am aware, since that incident, not one company or public utility in the USA, has placed an order for a nuclear reactor! Indeed, though the operating permits for half of the more than 100 nuclear reactors in the US are scheduled to expire by 2015, none has been renewed. Fascinating eh? Now, whatever you think about nuclear power, it is evident that consistent media hype against nuclear power has completely crippled the industry, especially in America.

Now mind you, my point is neither for nor against nuclear power; no, my point is that what you think, what you actually believe, especially what you say about what you believe, does indeed effect how you and others will act in years to come, even if your facts are incorrect. Think about that! I say again, the operating permits for half of the more than 100 nuclear reactors in the US are scheduled to expire by 2015, but none have been renewed. Why is that? I mean there was no nuclear meltdown, rather, words have crippled the nuclear industry, scuppered it and sunk it. Therefore, be careful what comes out of your mouth and flows from the tip of your pen then, for truly the Scriptures are correct when they tell us that, “Death and life are in the power of the tongue, and those who love it will eat its fruit.” Proverbs 18:21 NKJV Be careful now then and don’t make the giants more bigger and more powerful than they really are. If you do, you will pay for it. Especially in the long run.

Listen: -rise, let us go up against them. For we have seen the land, and indeed it is very good. Would you do nothing? Do not hesitate to go, and enter to possess the land. Judges 18:9

Lord, please give me a ‘CAN DO’ spirit. Lord, please, put a guard on my lips that I might not sabotage my future, nor the future of others with unwise words of unbelief. Amen.


Mar | 28 | Catch The Wind

Dream Word – PERSEVERE

Exodus 2:11-15 Now it came to pass in those days, when Moses was grown, that he went out to his brethren and looked at their burdens. And he saw an Egyptian beating a Hebrew, one of his brethren. So he looked this way and that way, and when he saw no one, he killed the Egyptian and hid him in the sand. And when he went out the second day, behold, two Hebrew men were fighting, and he said to the one who did the wrong, "Why are you striking your companion?" Then he said, "Who made you a prince and a judge over us? Do you intend to kill me as you killed the Egyptian?"So Moses feared and said, "Surely this thing is known!" When Pharaoh heard of this matter, he sought to kill Moses. But Moses fled from the face of Pharaoh and dwelt in the land of Midian; and he sat down by a well. NKJV

Catch The Wind

This weekend and next, my present ministerial activities take me to the Kent countryside and Royal Tunbridge Wells in particular. Which is of course, also the birth place of the great, Rev. Frank William Boreham, who lived from 1871-1959. As an ordained Baptist preacher ministering in England, New Zealand and Australia, he was probably the last student to be interviewed by C.H. Spurgeon, for entry into his Pastor’s College!

Boreham’s prolific writings in the form of essays in particular, number in their thousands and he has and continues to influence many great speakers and theologians which came after him. Boreham’s tantalizing title-ing, descriptive and poetic prose and stories rooted in the common pictures of his day, all go to make his writings attractive, instructive and memorable. For example, in describing an old lady of a village who was of both strong and courageous character, a godly woman and deeply respected and especially visited by many for her personal counsel, he writes that, “Like the sturdier of the poplars by my gate, she had gathered into herself the force of all the cruel winds that had beaten so savagely upon her.” I like that.

Hardships and failures are often, in worked out practicality, fled from, rather than fed upon! We mostly turn our back upon our failures and maybe even flee to greener pastures new, where no bitter remembrance of them can ever flower from our better plantings in the now new, fresh and fertile ground. I have often observed that these two courses of action, forgetting and fleeing that is, though frowned upon by folk not overly familiar with good intentions gone terribly bad, are often and never the less, absolutely necessary practices for both the safety and for sometimes the sanity of the individual.

I believe that this was the case in our text for tonight regarding Moses and his current enrolment into the true college of faith and worship, situated in the mountainous halls and barren sandy plains of the backside of the dead and disappointing desert.

In tis same desolate desert, Moses that great past leader of Egyptian men and monarchy and future desert Pastor to former slaves who would become the servants of the Most High God, over the next 40 years would gather into himself all the force of the cruel winds that had beaten so savagely against him. So much so, that when actually commissioned by God to fulfil his destiny, his prayers would call forth these very same stormy winds, which would then be employed to blow away the eating locust into the seas and to bring from those same seas, mountains of Quail for complaining men and even pour these same gathered and destructive winds over the pursuing and angry army of Pharaoh’s men, still intent on further slaughter and bent on future enslavement. Brethren, I tell you tonight, that on the wings of angelic beings, who both inhabit and play, both war and pray among these same stormy winds of protection and provision, even God Himself, was seen to ride! Have you seen Him there?

For some of you tonight, it is time to stop fleeing those stormy winds and time to turn and feed upon them, for surely, God shall be found in them, surely, provision shall be gotten out of them and surely, protection shall be rolled along by them.

By the armfuls then, gather into yourself the force of all the cruel winds that have beaten so savagely upon you and feed on them, even making them your friends, for they shall in the end, both prosper your deliverance and power your destiny.

Listen: - He rode upon a cherub, and flew; and He was seen upon the wings of the wind. 2 Samuel 22:11 NKJV

Pray:- Now then O my Father, arms open wide, I call to my mouth, and command to my lungs, from the North, and the from the South, from the East and from the West, all the stormy winds of bitter disappointment and cruel adversity. Teach me to eat them and to digest them for my benefit and for my future deliverance, that they may indeed, become the power of my destiny in You, for Your eternal glory I ask this, in Jesus name, amen!

Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Mar | 27 | Quality Control

Key Word:- FORGIVE

Title:- Quality Control

Proverbs 10:12 Hatred stirs up strife, But love covers all sins.

The story goes that, “A man was driving his Rolls Royce in Europe. The car broke down and the local garage told him that a part would need to be gotten from the manufacturer. Rolls Royce was contacted and the required part was flown out to Europe from mainland Britain. Some time after returning home, the man telephoned Rolls Royce recounting the incident with the faulty part, and thanking Rolls Royce for their speedy response, finally remarking that, the only problem he had was that he hadn’t yet received a bill for all the work, and imagining it to be quite a sum, was a little concerned. The voice on the line from Rolls Royce replied, "Don’t worry sir there will not be a bill; we are not sure what your talking about, as that particular part has never failed in a Rolls Royce Engine and never will!”

Henry Royce was born today in 1863. The vehicles produced by his company were known around the world for quality and reliability. Every effort was made to make sure that this reputation was maintained. Any difficulties or problems within the company with respect to quality control and production, remained within the company. As far as the rest of the world was concerned, the product was completely and totally reliable. Oh that the church took a similar view in things! It takes great wisdom to know how to address issues, and problems within the church, so here is my advice from the Scriptures.

Above all things, let love cover a multitude of sins. Above all things let Christ be glorified in the doing of this. Then, address the sinful issue within the circle of its offence. If it is personal, keep it personal; if it is a wider circle, keep it never the less, within that wider circle; if it is public, than address it publicly; however, remember and remember well, that if you must suffer, it is better to suffer for the sake of righteousness and not for the sake of hanging out someone else’s offensive washing for all the world to see, especially when God has forgiven the offence already. Such public revelation of someone else’s covered sin, almost always has repercussive kickbacks for the whistle blower. Yes, deal with sin, but yet let every effort be made to make sure that blood washed righteous reputations are maintained. Whatever happens within the church with respect to quality control, and production, let it remain within the church. As far as the rest of the world is concerned, let grace reign, righteousness, wisdom, and let saintly discretion, be seen to be totally reliable. Oh that the church took a similar view in things as Rolls Royce! In the doing of our sins, we the redeemed will thoroughly shame our Saviour, but in the dealing with these sins, let us the church, be careful not put Christ to open shame again.

Finally then, let me say this today. There is a vast difference between a cover up and a cover over. There is a vast difference between the pretence of righteousness and the practice of righteousness redeemed. Think about that. So even if you lose your shirt, let sins that have been confronted, then dealt with and forgiven, be also then covered over.

Listen: - If anyone wants to sue you and take away your tunic, let him have your cloak also. Matthew 5:40

Pray: - Lord. This is hard. Help us respond in courage, wisdom and grace to all offences, that Your name might be glorified and righteousness be maintained. Let ‘honour’ Oh God, let grace be our watchword, indeed, and let Christ’s blood be all our sure coverings. Amen and Amen!


Mar | 27 | Cow Zombies

Dream Word – FOCUS

1 Samuel 6:3-9 So they said, "If you send away the ark of the God of Israel, do not send it empty; but by all means return it to Him with a trespass offering. Then you will be healed, and it will be known to you why His hand is not removed from you." Then they said, "What is the trespass offering which we shall return to Him?" They answered, "Five golden tumours and five golden rats, according to the number of the lords of the Philistines. For the same plague was on all of you and on your lords. Therefore you shall make images of your tumors and images of your rats that ravage the land, and you shall give glory to the God of Israel; perhaps He will lighten His hand from you, from your gods, and from your land. Why then do you harden your hearts as the Egyptians and Pharaoh hardened their hearts? When He did mighty things among them, did they not let the people go, that they might depart? Now therefore, make a new cart, take two milk cows which have never been yoked, and hitch the cows to the cart; and take their calves home, away from them. Then take the ark of the Lord and set it on the cart; and put the articles of gold which you are returning to Him as a trespass offering in a chest by its side. Then send it away, and let it go. And watch: if it goes up the road to its own territory, to Beth Shemesh, then He has done us this great evil. But if not, then we shall know that it is not His hand that struck us — it happened to us by chance." NKJV.

Cow Zombies
So God desired to kill the sons of Eli. Thus Hophni and Phineas were killed when the Ark of God, that box of the presence of the Lord amongst His people, was also lost to the Philistines in battle.

Like just another Trophy of just another locally conquered God, the Ark was then placed by the Philistines in the presence of their own god, Dagon. After all, surely two gods = double the power. What follows however, is nothing short of disastrous for the Philistines in that they were plagued with testicular tumours and overrun with rats and all their associated infestations and infections. To top it all, their idol of Dagon was found on several occasions to be laid prostrate and broken before the Ark of the Lord. This didn’t do too much for the reputation of their own local god in that “...neither the priests of Dagon nor any who come into Dagon's house tread on the threshold of Dagon in Ashdod to this day.” 1 Samuel 5:5. Yes, the Dagon shrine at Ashdod was forever rubbished by the presence of the real and only God.
The five Lords of the Philistines seemed to be passing the problems associated with the presence of the Ark of God, from one of their ruling provinces to the next. That is, until a vocal group of NIMBY’s (Not in My Back Yarders) kicked up such a fuss, that the problem needed to be properly addressed at last. Thus through divination, the priests of the Philistines came up with the solution laid out in our text for tonight and so, they loaded up the cart and watched the outcome from afar.

God now did what Dagon could never do: He guided the cows, who unaccustomed to the yoke newly placed upon them, never the less, under God’s guidance, drew the load equally and securely, kept their attention on the right road, overcame their strong and natural desire to go to their calves, and brought them in a straight line, without missing one turn in the road, straight away to the priestly city of Beth Shemesh.
Let me emphasize that these cows went contrary to their own inclinations in that they had not forgotten their offspring and were not therefore moved ahead in some disassociated Zombie Cow-like state, no, they were still lowing for their young ones, calling them, even pining for them. It would appear then that these cows knew their true master, knew their great owner, and were following His commands, even to their death, above and despite their own natural cow-like inclinations. The following and watching Philistines, in observing these continually lowing kine, saw the majesty and the power of God over nature. It was enough to cause them to acknowledge that the judgement of God, had indeed been upon them.

We all, in our home nations of this day, seem to neither know nor even consider that the Judgement of God may be upon us. Unlike the pining cattle of our text, we are in fact “Zombie-like Cows” trotting not so merrily but like a drug and voodoo’d zombie, we lumber in Frankenstein-like steadiness, in stupor to the slaughterhouse, being covered in tumours of STD’s (did you know a 2003 federal study revealed that 25% of American teenage girls carry a sexually transmitted disease!) and piling up our young men like so much dead meat on various battlefields around the watching world. I cannot help but believe that this is but the beginning of our sorrows, for zombie-like cows, lost in a self-indulgent, cud-chewing, mindless, mooing stupor, rarely listen to the Gospel of Jesus Christ presented to them for God has hardened their heart and settled them in their Christ rejecting state.

The whole truth of the Bible, presents a disturbing picture of a Holy and a good God, coming into contact with a dirty and a bad mankind. Our only hope is to pray God’s mercy over our Zombie Cattled Nations, which are moving headlong to the slaughterhouse. You see truly the answer to our problems is not better programmes to pander to the masses, not hipper presentations to hype them into the Kingdom, not the coolest of music to con them into more consumerist tendencies, but rather to pray to God that He would unharden their hearts and unblock their ears before they are slaughtered before His presence. It's not a merry message, but it is one that needs proclaiming.

Listen: - The ox knows its owner And the donkey its master's crib; NKJV

Pray:- What passing-bells are there for these who die as cattle? Lift O Lord, the zombie-like stupor that has fallen like death cauls around all the newborn of these wayward generations. Lord, grant to your church the right kind of cattle prod to issue a most timely wake up call to one and all, in Jesus name we pray, amen.

Monday, March 26, 2012

Mar | 26 | The Boom-Box of the Beating Heart of God


Title:-The Boom-Box of the Beating Heart of God

Luke 6:10,11 And when He had looked around at them all, He said to the man, “Stretch out your hand.” And he did so, and his hand was restored as whole as the other. But they were filled with rage….

I hate Boom-Boxes. Their intrusive noise and the accompanying shenanigans of those who cart them around on their shoulders or even drag them on little carts, usually means that my relaxing afternoon is going to be oer’shadowed with a thunderstorm of hip-hop. Good grief, those blooming Boom-Boxes are just so intrusive!

Maybe it’s just a predominantly Western and Calvinistic mindset? Even so, we will have order in our churches. Come to that, we shall insist on order everywhere! Order in the universe, order in our marriage, order in our mind, order in our family, order in our sock drawer, order in all things, except on things that are tall. Oh yes, tall orders shall be frowned upon, as they overstretch us to such an extent that we might just fall over and end up, well, end up disorderly, out of control, foolish. No, that’s settled then, we shall have undisruptive order! Why? Well because God is a God of order, and after all, where there is order there is a control and good grief, we need control over just about everything, because control is the same as safety and safety means no bad surprises and no bad surprises means no pain, no embarrassment and no problems. You see what I mean? We shall have this kind of order in our churches; the order of the graveyard, white engraved headstones set in green grass all in a neat little row, for after all, the dead rarely cause problems.

In our text today, look at Jesus. Do you see Him friends? Like some naughty toddler tempting his parents fortitude. Looking around, staring at them, and maybe thinking to Himself “On a Sabbath day, shall I? Do you dare me? Do you tempt me, the Lord of the Sabbath! Shall I break your rules? Yes, I shall……. ‘Stretch out your hand!’”
People with rules, even rules rooted in Scripture cannot stand Prince Jesus the party-pooper, inviting repentant prostitutes and gays into His realm; the tax collectors and robbers, the unwashed, the unclean, the unkempt, the un-kept, indeed, all the ‘uns’, every single ‘un’ of them, into a place that overturns rules, overturns constitutions, articles, traditions, and whilst doing so, blasts out mercy, grace, forgiveness, and lavishness from the Boom-Box of the beating heart of God! Good grief, those Boom-Boxes are just so intrusive!

I may have said it before, but I shall say it again, “Be careful if you invite Jesus to your religious party, for He never behaves Himself!” After all, Jesus is the Boom-Box of the Beatng Heart of God!

Listen: - I did not come to call the righteous, but sinners, to repentance.” Mark 2:17

Pray: - Lord, break my rules, break my chains, break my heart, and make me more like You. Amen!

Mar | 26 | When You Bust a Gut.......

Dream Word – REST

1 Kings 19:3,4 And when he saw that, he arose and ran for his life, and went to Beersheba, which belongs to Judah, and left his servant there. But he himself went a day's journey into the wilderness, and came and sat down under a broom tree. And he prayed that he might die, and said, "It is enough! Now, Lord, take my life, for I am no better than my fathers!" NKJV.

When You Bust a Gut....

Like I said, I had just arrived back from a visit to the U.S.A. Since 911, travel is no longer any fun and pulling four bags with a total weight of around 150lbs from the circulator of a baggage claim and then carting it to your next destination can be harmful to a man in his late 40’s, especially after 8 hours on a plane bent double and eating bad, very bad, beef lasagne. So anyway, that accounts for my pain of today. I won't tell you where, but only a man gets pain there! Ouch. As far as I can tell, rest and maybe anti-biotics (?) are the only remedy for this kind of over exertion.

Now, believe me when I tell you there is a spiritual parallel here, for I know that spiritual over exertion can lead to the same bow-legged walking pain, can lead to reproductive incapacity, can lead to embarrassment and if left untreated, it can also lead to painful depression, even a depression that tends to thoughts of checking-out without even exchanging your chips. This was Elijah’s problem you see, despite a few thousand unbent kneels to Baal, he was nevertheless, the only one to be bending his knees in lifting the heavy and dead weight of a backsliding Israel.

It is amazing just how many ailments, physical, emotional, mental and even spiritual, that can be cleared up with rest, relaxation, good food and medication, provided nothings busted of course! If that happens you need surgery and then rest, relaxation, good food and medication. Be careful what you are lifting out there fella. If you can get help, for apparently there are always a thousand strong backs somewhere, then get it! If however these one thousand are well hidden, them make sure, you pace yourself, train yourself, and if necessary get yourself a truss!

My jocularity belays some very serious stuff here though. Spiritual over exertion can so drain you, so empty you, so exhaust you, that the consequence of ills it can bring upon you, can fill that tired, painful and aching emptiness with such death, that it can destroy your ministry, destroy your testimony, and kill you dead. Believe me, I have seen it happen and here tonight, it was happening to Elijah and frankly, he didn’t give two hoots.

If your spiritual exertion has led to pain, then you had better rest up. I tell you, it’s a sin to let the lack of a few days regular rest rob you of further weeks, months and even years in the ministrations of your God.

Listen: - So Elisha turned back from him, and took a yoke of oxen and slaughtered them and boiled their flesh, using the oxen's equipment, and gave it to the people, and they ate. Then he arose and followed Elijah, and became his servant. 1 Kings 19:21 NKJV.

Pray:- Lord, strengthen my back, give me the humility to ask for help and then Father, when I bust a gut, help me rest, even renew my youth like the eagles and then give me also this same raptors keener sense of sight, to view the coming prosperous years that will spring from this my rest. In Jesus name I pray, amen.


Sunday, March 25, 2012

Mar | 25 | Some Profitable Postmodern Policing...Maybe?


Title:- Some Profitable Postmodern Policing...Maybe?

Matthew 6:12  And forgive us our debts, As we forgive our debtors.

‘My heart leaps up when I behold
A rainbow in the sky:
So was it when my life began;
So is it now I am a man;
So be it when I shall grow old,
Or let me die!
The Child is father of the Man;
And I could wish my days to be
Bound each to each by natural piety.’

Wordsworth. Composed March 26, 1802 —Published 1807

‘The Child is the father of The Man;’ So says the seventh line of this Wordsworth poem entitled ‘My heart Leaps Up ’

The poet Coleridge is reported to have commented on this poem by referring to it as an expression of the truth that “Men are ungrateful to others only when they have ceased to look back on their former selves with joy and tenderness. They exist as fragments.” In other words, unless we look back with tender joy and live to express who we are and where we have come from in some measure of thankfulness, then we can be nothing else but broken and bitter, frighteningly fragmented, sharp-edged, surly folk. On this comment, I must say that although I am unsure of the psychology, I am certain about the observation that we are indeed, fragmented people. Like broken and warped mirrors, we have a cracked and distorted view of who we really are. Like people prancing in front of the comedic concave and convex mirrors in the derelict 'House of Fun', we have chosen to look into these false mirrors, which are mostly of our own making and bending and then dress in them, even allow them to rightly judge us. We often do this until we become so ill in living the lie, that sickness forces us to fully capitulate to our own self-delusion and fearfully acknowledge this most terrible truth, that we do not recognize the man or woman in the mirror, not really, and infact, we do not know who we truly are, indeed, we have lost ourselves.

Introspection or self-examination is considered by quite a few in conservative Christendom, to be nothing but “unprofitable naval gazing”. The fact that many who journey into this inspection of introspection, seem to battle with, what is deemed to be, the seemingly self-created invisible and sometimes nonsensical monsters of the mind, and to make matter worse, whilst doing so, emit and exude an often morbid, macabre and melancholic joy to the watching crowd of conservative skeptics, simply brands their introspective efforts as confusing or, mostly just plain weird! Who can blame them?

Postmoderns, on the other hand, (and I speak in general and not Christian terms) supposedly embrace such introspection as profitable policing of the inner self. Maybe Coleridge would be particularly happy in a postmodern, loose and liberal, spiritually diverse Californian type society, where such journeying is expected together with all its consequent level of healing? Maybe?

However, if the introspection of the postmodern spiritual journey is truly profitable, then friend consider this; for if indeed the child is father to the man, then had we not better re-embrace the hurting child; hug and heal him, and love him into wholeness? Some of you guys are already saying “Good grief Charlie Brown, you’ve gotta be kidding me!? Get me a sick bag.” Who can blame you after all, I mean it sounds so, well it sounds so very effeminate and puppy-like really. Well doesn’t it?

However, despite your aversion to the observation and whatever your personal take on such matters might be, true holiness dear friends, must in the end become true wholeness in Jesus. Wholeness must be completeness; completeness must mean defragmentation and defragmentation must mean fixing, and fixing must mean looking, and looking must mean grieving, and grieving must lead to forgiving, and forgiving must lead to embracing, and embracing must mean healing, and healing must mean a move into wholeness or shall we say, true holiness, thus completing the circle. Maybe for many of you, the wholeness you seek lies in the right loving of your self? Maybe it begins in looking back in time? Maybe it does indeed lie in the man embracing the child once more? Maybe in the company of men, this is a courageous journey of introspection that more men and women need to make?....Maybe?

Listen: - I will bring it health and healing; I will heal them and reveal to them the abundance of peace and truth. Jer 33:6-7

Pray: - O Lord, come and make my crooked places straight and my rough places smooth. Heal me into wholeness in You, my dearest Lord Jesus, amen.

Mar | 25 | The 7 Marks Of Dream Makers & 3 Scales to Measure Them By

Dream WordOBEY

Proverbs 18:9 He who is slothful in his work is a brother to him who is a great destroyer. NKJV

The 7 Marks Of Dream Makers & 3 Scales to Measure Them By

Having just flown back from America to my home in the United Kingdom, I found myself taking a vow. You see, from leaving my pleasant lodgings in Fort Lauderdale, I drove to Miami, flying from there to Boston and then on to Heathrow, where I was picked up at the airport by my son who drove me home, then carried my luggage up the stairs to our apartment as I limped behind him, dazed and thoroughly exhausted. The whole journey had taken me twenty-six hours from door to door, the real frustrations being a delay in Miami, the need to change two deflated aircraft tyres in Boston and an extra hour of frustrated waiting, on the tired tarmac in London. Despite hot food, copious amounts of coffee, blankets, pillows, a fine selection of entertainment and polite, sweet-smelling cabin crews, I classed it as my worst journey yet and vowed never to make it again, that is, not unless I crossed the pond in the style that only a first class cabin can offer!

In the 17th Century, the sea crossing to Boston could take anything from 6 to 28 weeks depending on the wind and the weather. With no bathrooms, no running water, save that beneath the keel, sour beer, mouldy cheese, overcrowding, danger and sickness, George Whitfield that greatest of Christian orators, made that particular crossing, there and back mind you, some thirteen different times! If that wasn’t enough to make this present poor preacher feel any more of a whining wimp, Whitfield went on to preach over ten sermons per week, some 160,000 in his lifetime. On top of this, he corresponded widely, headed up major theological and charitable causes and raised money for them both! In Georgia in particular, just outside of Savannah on the Moon River, Whitfield, today in 1847, aged then just 25 years, began construction on the buildings of the ‘House of Mercy,’ Bethesda, a new orphanage for the provinces, that exists even today, as ‘Bethesda Boys Home.’

Whitfield was burdened with the debt and therefore the fundraising for this orphanage for the rest of his life, indeed, after his death, that burden was even passed along to his Champion and sister in the Faith, Selina, Countess of Huntingdon. Mismanagement, revolution, fire, storm and hurricane, all raised themselves up against the continuance of Whitfield’s long established dream of an orphanage for the provinces, yet despite it all, his dream, though in more modern form, still continues today and has done great good for now over two centuries.

Great dreams require great endeavours. Great dreams require great dreamers with dirt underneath their fingernails. I have found that there is a great difference between the day dreamer and the dream maker and it is a difference of seven degrees, usually marked by prayers, blood, sweat, tears, tiredness, worry and vomit. What are you tonight? A day dreamer or a dream maker? If you would like to know which you are, sniff your armpits, then check your sick bag and your bank account, for those are the three best scales that you shall ever use, to truly discern yourself.

Listen: - He who tills his land will be satisfied with bread, But he who follows frivolity is devoid of understanding. Proverbs 12:11 NKJV

Pray:- Lord, in all my dreaming, in all my visualisation and in all my laws of attraction, help me to get off my backside, stop whining and get on with it! In Jesus name I pray, amen.


Saturday, March 24, 2012

Mar | 24 | The Listerine of Light


Title:- The Listerine of Light

Galatians 5:15 But if you bite and devour one another, beware lest you be consumed by one another!

“That England, that was wont to conquer others, hath made a shameful conquest if itself.” (Richard III Acts 2 Scene i) 

Civil War is an ugly thing. Like cancer, it is but the body turning inwards and eating itself alive. In the same way, the rebellion of the tongue can turn us into cannibals where the church of the living God is then communally devoured, belittled and brought to open shame, by both overtly ghastly and sometimes even seemingly harmless, ‘Godly’ gossip.

Tongues have toppled Kingdoms friends and they may yet topple you. In all respects, our hearts and our lips must be fully yielded to God, all the time, at every moment. The Scripture does not speak in vain when it counsels us to let nothing but ‘beefy and building’ up kind of words proceed from our mouth! Yes, watch your mouth, because Listerine won’t work here!I cannot clean with Listerine
This tame-less world of evil
Nor steer to tame
Praise due His name
By this corrupting

I cannot tire this field of fire
Nor cork this dripping flask of poison
Or lock behind my steeled barred teeth
This hellish
Forked tongue
Let me ask you today then friend, are you speaking with a forked tongue? Careful now, someone’s going to get their reputation punctured and it just might be you? Be careful that you do not make a shameful conquest of yourself today! Don’t become a dark cannibal. Today, let’s stop the church making a shameful conquest of her very self again.

Listen: -no man can tame the tongue. It is an unruly evil, full of deadly poison. James 3:8
Pray: - Let the words of my mouth and the meditation of my heart be acceptable in Your sight, O LORD, my strength and my redeemer. (Psalm 19:14)

Mar | 24 | The Dire Desire of a Deadly Divinity

Dream WordDANGER

1 Samuel 2:22-25 Now Eli was very old; and he heard everything his sons did to all Israel, and how they lay with the women who assembled at the door of the tabernacle of meeting. So he said to them, "Why do you do such things? For I hear of your evil dealings from all the people. No, my sons! For it is not a good report that I hear. You make the Lord's people transgress. If one man sins against another, God will judge him. But if a man sins against the Lord, who will intercede for him?" Nevertheless they did not heed the voice of their father, because the Lord desired to kill them. NKJV

The Dire Desire of a Deadly Divinity

Somewhere in New York, an old Italian guy watched his son, day after day, leave the apartment block and walk down the road towards his stop for school. Day after day, the old Italian father saw his son bullied by members of a local neighbourhood gang. Day after day, his son would go hungry at school because the older boys would steal his lunch money and day after day, his son would return from school, stiff with the beatings he had taken on his body. The son never said a word to his father and the father never told the son that he secretly observed and knew everything that was happening to him. The old father couldn’t tell you when he made the decision, but in his heart the sails were set, the rudder was pressed away from him and he had now come about to a very different course. One day soon, unexpectedly, he would kill those gang members who had robbed and abused his son for now so very, very long. Not yet but soon, he would punish those perpetrators of such violent abuse and miscreant injustice against his very own beloved so.
The top two levels of fear I have experienced in my life, yes there have been many levels, has been first, the outburst of violent emotional anger. Passionate crime, like a summer storm, can be devastating but never the less it is over quickly and frankly its violence is often so widely spread, that in its effect, most of the time, those valuables of ours, those vital interests we cosset, are often spared it’s angry and unexpected onslaught. It was scary, it was tempestuous, but the violence it generated was in the end, its own means of dissipation.

Secondly, there is a more terrifying settling of anger, which I have observed first to begin in the eyes of a man, only to flow slowly, like thick molasses down the side of an open jar and fix itself like motorway bridge concrete in the deep foundational depths of the soul. When this firm, fixed and set decision of destructive and planned devastation, slots quietly like a key into the lock of the door of death, the icy countenance it produces, chills the very spirit of those who see and know, in a certain and terrifying expectancy that full-formed anger has finally come to visit them. There is no escape from this for there is no dissipation. Once hardened anger is released, it buys a big, bad, boat and sets its course for death filling its own black and bellowed sails with undeterred desire. Surely, there is no greater terror, than when a decision of death is turned into an active and unstoppable purpose to fulfil?The sooner we tremble at the quietness of God’s capital decisions the sooner we will seek to calm and expiate, His so great, His so fixed and His so focused and purposed anger. This calm and confident, fixed and icy stare of the Most High God, is one our world needs to be made much more familiar with and that right quickly, for I hear the deep long intake of angry, angelic breaths and the soft sound of golden trumpets, being pressed to pursed lips...

Listen: - Then the sixth angel sounded: And I heard a voice from the four horns of the golden altar which is before God, saying to the sixth angel who had the trumpet, "Release the four angels who are bound at the great river Euphrates." So the four angels, who had been prepared for the hour and day and month and year, were released to kill a third of mankind. Now the number of the army of the horsemen was two hundred million; I heard the number of them. And thus I saw the horses in the vision: those who sat on them had breastplates of fiery red, hyacinth blue, and sulfur yellow; and the heads of the horses were like the heads of lions; and out of their mouths came fire, smoke, and brimstone. By these three plagues a third of mankind was killed — by the fire and the smoke and the brimstone which came out of their mouths. For their power is in their mouth and in their tails; for their tails are like serpents, having heads; and with them they do harm. But the rest of mankind, who were not killed by these plagues, did not repent of the works of their hands, that they should not worship demons, and idols of gold, silver, brass, stone, and wood, which can neither see nor hear nor walk. And they did not repent of their murders or their sorceries or their sexual immorality or their thefts. Revelation 9:13-21 NKJV. 

Pray:- Amen. Even so, come, Lord Jesus! Revelation 22:20 NKJV


Friday, March 23, 2012

Mar | 23 | Some Words From The Weaponry of The Marching Man

Key Word:- PROMISE

Title:- Some Words From The Weaponry of The Marching Man

Luke 18:29,30 “Assuredly, I say to you, there is no one who has left house or parents or brothers or wife or children, for the sake of the kingdom of God, who shall not receive many times more in this present time, and in the age to come eternal life.”  

After many disconnected years, I remember receiving the letter from a couple of old Calebs. In the photographs they sent, I could still see the light of Jesus shining from their eyes. For decades, they had lived a life of faith and trust in God, and had influenced countless thousands. It did not come without a cost, but they had borne it well and counted it a privilege to serve the Lord. They had given up the American dream many years ago, and sought a better dream, if you will, an heavenly vision, even a city whose builder and maker was God. It did not come without a cost, but their reward shall be great. Loving; leaving; cost and reward, should all be familiar words in the weaponry of the marching man.

Kipling in his poem ‘Harp Song of a Dane Woman’ talks of the astonishment of women who see their Viking men going off to sea again and again, going out to court, as it were, the ‘Old Grey Widow Maker’ of the sea, and in so doing always taking the chance that they might not return to their own loving arms.

In Louisville Kentucky, in the centre of the Ohio river, lay many islands, but it is ‘Sand Island’ that contains the evidence of pre-pilgrim sea faring settlers, that also coincides with an old Indian legend of a tribe of fierce white warriors with golden hair who used to live there in the long, long, long ago. Who knows for sure, but maybe the Welsh or even the Vikings made it to Louisville, way, way before the pilgrim fathers ever landed on these American shores? If so, it was a long and costly journey that left many perplexed and watching loved ones behind. It was a journey they never came back from:
Then you drive out where the storm clouds swallow
And the sound of your oar blades falling hollow
Is all that we have left through months to follow

What is a woman that you forsake her,
And the hearth fire and the home acre,
To go with the old grey Widow-maker?

It was two brave Mennonite missionaries who sold themselves into a lifetime of slavery that they might wait upon three thousand British slaves held in isolated captivity from the rest of the world. It was two brave Mennonite missionaries who having sold themselves, used the money to buy passage to that island, where as slaves, they would minister Christ to slaves. It was these same two Mennonite missionaries who linked arms and waved at their weeping relatives on the Dockside. It was these same two Mennonite missionaries who cried out to their relatives who they would NEVER see again and left a prophetic shout that would energise Mennonite missions for countelss years to come, “May the Lamb that was slain, receive the reward of His suffering!”They sailed over the Horizon and were never seen or heard of again.I wonder if there are still many Christian soldiers around who would be willing to forsake all things for the sake of the Gospel, and the Lord Himself? I wonder if this generation has any Amy Carmichaels or Jim Elliot’s and other brave sacrificial souls, of whom the world is not worthy? I wonder if there are any waiting warriors, the all-forsaking kind I mean, fierce and familiar with the words and weaponry of the marching man? If there are, then they shall go down to the sea in ships, and see the wonders of the Lord.

Listen: - Three times I was beaten with rods; once I was stoned; three times I was shipwrecked; a night and a day I have been in the deep; in journeys often, in perils of waters, in perils of robbers, in perils of my own countrymen, in perils of the Gentiles, in perils in the city, in perils in the wilderness, in perils in the sea, in perils among false brethren; in weariness and toil, in sleeplessness often, in hunger and thirst, in fastings often, in cold and nakedness — besides the other things, what comes upon me daily: my deep concern for all the churches. 2 Corinthians 11:25-28
Pray: - Take my life and let it be, consecrated Lord to thee. Take care of those we love who are not forsaken by us, but are, never the less, so very left behind. In Jesus name we ask it, amen and amen.

Mar | 23 | Nabel Was Not Able To Be Bound In The Bundle Of The Living

Dream Word – HOPE

Isaiah 32:6-8 For the foolish person will speak foolishness, And his heart will work iniquity: To practice ungodliness, To utter error against the Lord, To keep the hungry unsatisfied, And he will cause the drink of the thirsty to fail. Also the schemes of the schemer are evil; He devises wicked plans To destroy the poor with lying words, Even when the needy speaks justice. But a generous man devises generous things, And by generosity he shall stand. NKJV
Also, read:- 1 Samuel 25.

Nabel Was Not Able To Be Bound In The Bundle Of The Living

The new mother gazed lovingly into the eyes of her beloved new born.
“Oh darling” she said to her happy husband,
“Oh darling what shall we call him?”

“My love,”
he responded, “Our first born. My firstborn and a son at that! Hallelujah! How about we call him ‘Idiot?’

“A little harsh.” She replied, “A little harsh. How about Stupid?”

he says, happy but unsure. “Two syllables compared to three. Let’s get back on track, how about ‘Simpleton?’ ”

“Three syllables,” says she, “Oi vey! What’s all this thing about three? Tell you what,”
says she,“Let’s cut to the chase with this child and give him a one syllable summary.”

“What do you suggest?”
says he expectantly,

“Fool!” she exclaims, “ Let’s call the little darling, FOOL!”

And so the son was named ‘FOOL,’ or as we know him, 'NABEL'.

Nabal was a descendent of that great man of renown, the last man standing of his whole generation, Caleb. Our story for tonight goes to show a few important things, the primary one being that fruit of the loins, very often does fall very far from the tree. Nabal, most certainly did.

Now Nabal was a rich man. I can only assume this is why he happened to get hooked up with a wise and beautiful and well righteous young woman called Abigail. I am always amazed at what rich fools can buy for themselves. Never the less, make no mistake about it, Nabal was a rich fool. Some doctors examining the full story of Nabal’s unhappy demise, looking in 1 Samuel 25, surmise that he suffered from a ‘Circulatory Disease which in the end, probably gave him a cerebral haemorrhage.’ The cause of this disorder, they suggest, is that ‘Nabal was probably a confirmed alcoholic who had arteriosclerosis and associated hypertension with the lesion which killed him, probably being located in one of the atheromatous patches in the brain, and it was that which accounted for the ten day of coma prior to his eventual death.’ Anyone who drinks himself to death is indeed a fool. Are you this kind of fool?

Make no mistake about it, I have met many folks calling themselves Christians, who have been sent home from hospital to die because the doctors know the cause of their illness is alcoholism and nothing else. I ask you again: Are you this kind of FOOL?

Nabal is very simply, emblematic of the fool who rejects God and His anointed. He is drunk on his own goods and his own power. He is a brute, a misuser of men, a miser of his personal riches, a FOOL who regards his personal relations as cattle to be branded and used, even as he so desires. Never the less, David privately protected this man’s goods and his standing, indeed, it was David’s presence in the wilderness that allowed Nabal’s continued and increased prosperity. Imagine that.

At the time of sheep shearing, in an area then dominated by the wool trade, it was the presently proclaimed and future coming King, David son of Jesse, who himself instructed his followers to go and politely, calmly, gently, and with great respect, ask for some recognition of his protection and consequently, just a very small part in Nabal’s prosperity, so that David’s troops may be fed and might be allowed to rejoice along with him at the celebrations. Nabal, was well able, to provide all this.

However, Nabal the fool, feigns ignorance of David, and then questions his lineage and his anointing. David's troops politely leave and when David receives this particular slap in the face, straps on his sword and instructs his followers to do the same. David angrily mounts his steed with the sole purpose of covering its flanks with Nabal’s blood.

It was wise Abigail, who leaving her husband in a drunken stupor, rides to meet David in the way, to try and avert his righteous vengeance. She is successful in the so doing and when, in the mid-morning of the morrow, she then recounts in the ears of her head thumping, husband, the great escape she has engineered for him, he has a heart attack, a brain seizure even and enters into a ten day coma, a coma from which he will never recover. David rejoices in Nabal’s death and then marries the sweet, wise Abigail.

All born fools who in their drunken pride reject the gentle approaches of King Jesus, shall in the end, be killed by God Almighty. All faithful wives bound to such fools, whether by blood or marriage, (listen well now) shall be saved at last and shall be joined to Jesus as His bride.
God paints us a simple picture tonight, a picture that even a fool can understand. Are you a fool tonight?

Listen: - So it was, in the morning, when the wine had gone from Nabal, and his wife had told him these things, that his heart died within him, and he became like a stone. Then it happened, after about ten days, that the Lord struck Nabal, and he died. 1 Samuel 25:37-38 NKJV  

Pray:- Please, let not my Lord regard this scoundrel Nabal. For as his name is, so is he: Nabal is his name, and folly is with him! But I, your servant, ask you to hold back from coming in bloodshed and from avenging Yourself with Your own hand. Now then, let your enemies and those who seek harm for my Lord be as Nabal, but as for me and my house, please forgive the sins of your servant and let our lives be bound in the bundle of the living, the living people, who follow You with all their hearts. Amen. NKJV