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Monthly Archives: August 2011

The Sedating Storm

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“Afflicted city, lashed by storms and not comforted, I will rebuild you with stones of turquoise, (a gemstone of holiness and good fortune) your foundations with lapis lazuli (a gemstone that represents truth and lasting friendship).”
Isaiah 54:10-12

I looked down helplessly, as the water current kept rising. I had but minutes to grab the wooden plank floating rudderless to and from me as if on an assignment to tease. The incessant surge of fluid was weakening my resolve to jump to safety. I could see the bottom of the body of water, though visible it was very intimidating. There was no promise that the overlapping waves would not overwhelm if I attempted to swim across. Swim? I could barely feel my legs and my hands were long frozen by my side. The panic that set in had psychologically ruined any physical or natural hope I had to tread the ominous pond evolving before my very eyes. I stepped forward and stood right at the tip of the quickly disappearing ledge, it was now or never I thought as I lifted my right leg forward. The word ‘jump’ thundered in my head loudly; was I entertaining a suicide demon I thought to myself or was logic setting in. A careless wave tumbled, and surged forward at me, heavily splashing my elevated toe. As if on cue, I lurched forward trying desperately to grab the wooden plank as it made one more bouncy attempt towards me. The shock of the cold hardness of the water when I hit it threw me of my intended aim. The plank slid from my frozen and unsure fingers and floated into oblivion…

There was nothing I could do now, it was quite dark and cold so I let the water lead, as I drifted and prayed. I was not praying for safety at this point, I was praying to not feel anything. Strangely enough, the cold that seeped through my bones a few minutes earlier, had now translated to numbness. So I waited for the effects of hypothermia to set in – nothing. As a I drifted lifelessly and listlessly for a couple more minutes, I felt a shift in position; I was vertical now. The vertical position was not so I could walk on two feet, or even be airlifted, the water had come to a precipice (fall) and the sudden and steep incline made me feel like I had just tasted my own bile. I was going down at what I thought was the speed of light. As I descended with the flow current of the fall, the crashing waves from the top cascaded and pounded on my already sore temple. On Instinct, I reached forward to grab onto anything, I had to hold on to something and something I did catch. But what it was I could not tell as the force of gravity proudly announced itself. I was descending fast and my heart beat wildly against my chest. I held on to whatever I was holding on to, it felt light and silky but amazingly it was not soaked. I gripped hard as I became airborne…                                                                                                  Then there was the loudest banging noise I ever heard. It felt like a steam roller had been rolled over my head or better still a heavy cloud had smashed into it; did the earth move or quake I wondered as the silk cloth lifted me even higher into the sky.

I woke up to someone knocking on the door. As I made to get up and untangle the silk cover that held me captive, I heard a crack in my neck. Lord God Almighty; I should have won a neck brace for that ‘rapid descent’.

“Suddenly a furious storm came up on the lake, …But Jesus was sleeping.”
Matthew 8:23-25

Irate and Irrational IRENE

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“Behold, the Lord hath a mighty and strong one, which as a tempest of hail and a destroying storm, as a flood of mighty waters overflowing, shall cast down to the earth with the hand.” Isaiah 28:1-3

“His thunder announces the coming storm; even the cattle make known its approach.” Job 36:32-33

Dear Irene,

We have not met yet; and chances are we may never meet. Which ever takes place, I would still be on the Creators time plan. How can one bearing such a sweet name have such focused ferocity on destruction. They have called you monster and some blame you with evil tidings, but I really have not given you much thought. I am not afraid of you, and I have not really thought of the damages you might leave in your wake. But I know that does not diminish your strength or deter you from your pathway. I may be in that pathway or just maybe not. However, I must tell you that this is not a very good week for me to exalt a storm, hurricane, earthquake or whatever they may end up terming you. You see this week I experienced one of the sweetest and greatest miracle of my life. It was such a dead situation; only GOD ALMIGHTY could have revived ‘it’ and He graciously did. So I really want to revel in His awesome majesty and praise His glorious name. I can not focus on the Lover of my soul if I have to check-up on your progress every minute, and see what pain you have caused already. I will not watch your every move while I should be engrossed in the wiles of worship of the one true King who took my life as a sweet storm..

You may be on assignment from the Only one who can command your proud waves; so I will not begrudge you. “Fire, and hail; snow, and vapours; stormy wind fulfilling his word:” Psalm 148:7-9 Whatever does happen I am assured that the Master Planner has it all under control. If you do see me, do not be silly and just scoop me away, at least say hello and smile. You just might recognize I am your Master’s beloved and in that split second you will find out what to do to me, for me, or with me. Happy temptous flow Irene…

PS: I have just found out I fall into the category of ‘endangered species’ and need to be evacuated now! I was thinking of digging my heels in and refusing or perhaps starting a protest (and hoping at least two and a half people would join with me). But that would not be fun will it? To God be the glory anyhow; He is absolutely worthy of praise at times like these.  “And there shall be a tabernacle for a shadow in the day time from the heat, and for a place of refuge, and for a covert from storm and from rain.” Isaiah 4:5-6

And when it is all over, whether I am in heaven or still on earth, I will hear my Savior’s soothing voice say: ‘Peace be Still’

Where are my rain boots when I need them? Help me Jesus…

Please Pass the Salt…

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I am feeling a little spooked right now! The Lord said to me sit and write Psalm 132; I thought to myself, What is Psalm 132? It sounds boring (may God forgive me). I don’t remember seeing this before; I don’t know who it is for or why but here goes: All I can do is obey the Lord. I would like to take this opportunity to send a  special thanks and blessing to my friend Grace, who is an Associate Pastor in the Church at Seoul, South Korea. May God bless you and your family as you diligently do His Work. And may this blog be a source of refreshment and encouragement as God Himself reaches out to bear your daily burdens with you in Korea. We will pray for you as you do the same for us.

Psalm 132

New International Version (NIV)

A song of ascents.

 1 LORD, remember David
   and all his self-denial.

 2 He swore an oath to the LORD,
   he made a vow to the Mighty One of Jacob:
3 “I will not enter my house
   or go to my bed,
4 I will allow no sleep to my eyes
   or slumber to my eyelids,
5 till I find a place for the LORD,
   a dwelling for the Mighty One of Jacob.”

 6 We heard it in Ephrathah,
   we came upon it in the fields of Jaar:[a]
7 “Let us go to his dwelling place,
   let us worship at his footstool, saying,
8 ‘Arise, LORD, and come to your resting place,
   you and the ark of your might.
9 May your priests be clothed with your righteousness;
   may your faithful people sing for joy.’”

 10 For the sake of your servant David,
   do not reject your anointed one.

 11 The LORD swore an oath to David,
   a sure oath he will not revoke:
“One of your own descendants
   I will place on your throne.
12 If your sons keep my covenant
   and the statutes I teach them,
then their sons will sit
   on your throne for ever and ever.”

 13 For the LORD has chosen Zion, 
   he has desired it for his dwelling, saying,
14 “This is my resting place for ever and ever;
   here I will sit enthroned, for I have desired it.
15 I will bless her with abundant provisions;
   her poor I will satisfy with food.
16 I will clothe her priests with salvation,
   and her faithful people will ever sing for joy.

 17 “Here I will make a horn[b] grow for David
   and set up a lamp for my anointed one.
18 I will clothe his enemies with shame,
   but his head will be adorned with a radiant crown.”

To them that fear and obey the Lord; God’s word to you is that the enemy cannot abide in your lot.

Don’t you know that the LORD, the God of Israel, has given the kingship of Israel to David and his descendants forever by a covenant of salt?
2 Chronicles 13:4-6

“And now you plan to resist the kingdom of the LORD, which is in the hands of David’s descendants. You are indeed a vast army and have with you the golden calves that Jeroboam made to be your gods.
2 Chronicles 13:7-9

The LORD said to Jehu, “Because you have done well in accomplishing what is right in my eyes and have done to the house of Ahab all I had in mind to do, your descendants will sit on the throne of Israel to the fourth generation.”
2 Kings 10:29-31

PS:  ‘A Salt Covenant is unbreakable.’ It symbolizes utmost loyalty, respect and endurance. It means none of the party involved should treat it haphazardly. And since God is un-bendable, then we should play our part in obedience.  As the component and element it is named after (Sodium Chloride; NACL), it has the symbol of cleansing, preserving and purifying (from corruption; ‘have we not had enough?’) and also holiness. ” Then the LORD said to Moses, “Take fragrant spices—gum resin, onycha and galbanum—and pure frankincense, all in equal amounts, and make a fragrant blend of incense, the work of a perfumer. It is to be salted and pure and sacred.” Exodus 30: 34-35

When God Smiles***

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And the LORD said to Moses, “I will do the very thing you have asked, because I am pleased with you and I know you by name.”
Exodus 33:16-18

God is pleased and is smiling. He almost broke out in a dance (I think the rhythm was African, I am not so sure, just saying); but it took all I had to convince Him to hold off (on the dance Part) a little bit more. Since should he move his foot in excitement, the galaxy as we know it would sway and collectively thread the meteorites together, the planet will collide in praises, the milky-way will ‘runneth’ over, the stars will start to glitter in jubilation, the sun will blink in the brightest of glee (daytime may cease), the trees will all bow in worship (they may whip our faces in the process), the stones will start to cry out in exaltation (and I might get jealous), by the time all these have transpired, every knee will be bowing and every tongue confessing that HE (Jesus the Christ who is the Eternal God) IS THE LORD!!!

So God is holding back just a little and settling for a smile for us for now. (That is more than enough). But here is what God’s smile can do: heal the broken-hearted, make the lame to walk, cause the blind (spiritual and otherwise) to see, send a much-needed miracle your way and mine, raise the dead and whatever else you will ask in humility and with the intent to honor, trust and obey HIM.

PS: His glorious and loving smile will also put the enemy in your life to flight. So keep doing what you did today (and some). Let us keep God smiling 🙂

Que Sera, Sera (the pursuit of a ‘human target’)

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God is not human, that he should lie, not a human being, that he should change his mind. Does he speak and then not act? Does he promise and not fulfill?” Numbers 23:18-20

“When Herod realized that he had been outwitted by the Magi, he was furious, and he gave orders to kill all the boys in Bethlehem and its vicinity who were two years old and under, in accordance with the time he had learned from the Magi.”
Matthew 2:15-17

In the directly above verse, we see how a deranged, self-obsessed and demon-posessed King heartlessly ordered the massacre of thousands (perhaps 100’s of thousands) of innocent children from two years of age and under. They were babies, barely weaned; how much of a threat could they possible have been to a reigning king. And even if they were threats, by the time they came of age to pose in that position he should have been dead of old age or eaten alive by maggots (which thank God did happen). This blog-story though not specific, I promise: it so familiar and personal.

[ The Magi Visit the Messiah ] “After Jesus was born in Bethlehem in Judea, during the time of King Herod, Magi from the east came to Jerusalem”
Matthew 2:1-3

After Jesus had been born, the ‘Magi’ (magicians), star-gazers or often called ‘wise-men’ came from the east to pay a worthy homage to the child (that would be Saviour and King). How did they know? And most importantly, how accurate were they in their findings and knowledge? We have to understand that since there is only one known (and functioning) physical world, there is also a spiritual world. This is where God and His Holy Trinity dwells; howbeit in an unapproachable and Holy realm. The angels, Satan and demons also dwell in the spirit world. Most people including professing Christians, would like to deny the existence of a spirit world and aspire to ignore it. That would be the perfect example of the ‘ostrich syndrome’. Just because your head is buried in the sand; there-by blocking your vision of us, does not mean we do not see your widely spread and colorfully feathered tail! Denial never validates, it just provides a temporary state of delirium for the host subject to revel in. Alright, back to the ancient east we go, before I take off on a ‘Psychological Analysis’.

In the ‘spirit’ world, there is a constant and steady flow of information and direction. Most times those information are legally or illegally carried through, into our physical world. It is legal when the Ultimate Source and provider God Himself speaks to His Prophets, through His word, dreams and visions, and divinely inspired revelations. It is absolutely illegal, when witches, wizards, sooth-sayers and demon-posessed black magic priests and priestesses, astrologers etc. tap into the spirit world for information. One of our first example will be none other than the king of dis-obedience himself – Saul: “He inquired of the LORD, but the LORD did not answer him by dreams or Urim or prophets. Saul then said to his attendants, ‘Find me a woman who is a medium, so I may go and inquire of her’.” 1 Samuel 28:6-8  He tried to inquire of the Lord to satisfy his flesh and cover his sin; therefore God did not respond. He (God) reserves the right to divulge information or not to divulge, as he deems necessary and substantial especially when it pleases him. That is why He said, ‘the just live by faith…’, the faith of waiting on Him to have His way and not trying to steal information (through mediums, witchcraft and what have you) with an intent to abort His divinely set plan (oh the nerve of man!). And subsequently, if you are not living in the faith of Him having His way and carrying out HIS WILL, then it behooves you to know now that you are not pleasing Him. “And without faith it is impossible to please God, because anyone who comes to him must believe that he exists and that he rewards those who earnestly seek him. Hebrews 11:5-7  “Behold, his soul which is lifted up is not upright in him: but the just shall live by his faith.” Habakkuk 2:4  So when God does not respond; Saul takes matters into his own hands. We can definitely see his very progressive downward-spiral after these events.

Another person who dared to take an abominable sneak preview through a strange and idol-worshipping medium was Balak. In the book of Numbers, as the weary (yet divinely favored) Israelites journeyed, they came to their lodging reservation in the plains of Moab. Don’t forget that God was the One leading them; so if they were to dwell in enemy territory for a season, then so be it. But the enemy in question Moab (another descendant of an incestuosly-spiked disobedience), panicked when they saw the Israelites sprawled in their country-side backyard so to speak. They knew the Israelites to be divinely protected by ‘YAHWEH’ himself, but they still attempted to annihilate them! They were threatened for their positions, titles, gifts (which really are not), spouses, ministry and more importantly a desire to launch into a life-style of gouging and make belief, that was never in the original Master-plan. So based on their perceived threat, they informed the elders and the King of Moab as they skillfully portrayed the ‘victim’ role. Their mantra was simply this: we know these people are highly favored by God, they are incredibly gifted and we foresee a future where they will be used by God Himself to punish us for our wicked, idolatrous and abominable deeds. literally, if we do not take them out now; they will constantly stand as a beacon of conviction for us (breaking our stiff-neck), and a beacon of hope for others that we have and still intend to oppress. ‘The Moabites said to the elders of Midian, “This horde is going to lick up everything around us, as an ox licks up the grass of the field… The elders of Moab and Midian left, taking with them the fee for divination. When they came to Balaam, they told him what Balak had said.” Numbers 22:2-8 Uneasy and uncomforted (the people of Moab and Midian), they sent for a Prophet named Balaam to come and curse the seemingly dangerous and unsuspecting dwellers who were oblivious to the hatred and jealousy projected towards them.

As we all know, Balaam was not able to curse them. After an encounter with the Almighty; where a donkey spoke and his foot was crushed, Balaam saw the need to re-align and relocate (see blog: Re-align, Relocate and Re-group). He set out to bless the still oblivious beloved of the Lord (Israel). After Balaam settled into Jehovah’s camp and hung his breeches to dry, God put a word in his mouth and sent him back to Balak. Now incase you are not feeling it yet, this is God at war on behalf of His beloved… Allow me as I shout Hallelujah!!! What is even more unnerving, aggravating and irksome, is that Balak the idol and devil worshipper; employed the name of God in his evil and God-forsaken quest! Can you believe the nerve…? “[ Balaam’s Third Message ] Then Balak said to Balaam, “Come, let me take you to another place. Perhaps it will please God to let you curse them for me from there.” Numbers 23:26-28 To think that he was implying an alliance with God, when the whole time he was going against GOD HIMSELF! Here is how it all went and finally settled down.

” So he went back to him and found him standing beside his offering, with all the Moabite officials. 7Then Balaam spoke his message:

   “Balak brought me from Aram,
   the king of Moab from the eastern mountains.
‘Come,’ he said, ‘curse Jacob for me;
   come, denounce Israel.’
8 How can I curse
   those whom God has not cursed?
How can I denounce
   those whom the LORD has not denounced?
9 From the rocky peaks I see them,
   from the heights I view them.
I see a people who live apart
   and do not consider themselves one of the nations.
10 Who can count the dust of Jacob
   or number even a fourth of Israel?
Let me die the death of the righteous,
   and may my final end be like theirs!”

 11Balak said to Balaam, “What have you done to me? I brought you to curse my enemies, but you have done nothing but bless them!”

 12He answered, “Must I not speak what the LORD puts in my mouth?” Numbers 23:6-12 (NIV)

Is that not awesome; our sovereign God allowed the enemy to foolishly and blindly attempt the impossible. The impossibility of cursing and defiling the Lord’s anointed one (this anointing has nothing to do with a title or position), or thwarting the purposes and plans of the Most High for a highly favored life. And all the while confidently and ceremoniously playing the victim that was gifted by God. The Bible (Holy word of God) calls them ‘angels of light’, yet they are filled with utmost darkness. White-washed sepulchres, tools of demonic pleasure. 

So God Almighty indulged His prophets in what was to come (A Messiah would be born), “And the LORD said, Shall I hide from Abraham that thing which I do;” Genesis 18:16-18  He did not give the whole picture or sordid details. They were to faithfully wait for the vision to unfold layer after layer after layer. “3For the vision is yet for an appointed time, but at the end it shall speak, and not lie: though it tarry, wait for it; because it will surely come, it will not tarry.” Habakkuk 2:3  The powers and principalities in high places knew that the coming Messiah was the one through whom mankind would be equipped to crush his head and have the choice of not dining with him, come judgement day. He just did not know from where or how it would happen. So when he got whiff of the once sighted ‘star of wonder’ showing up again, he knew that meant the time was near. So he got desperately anxious to say the least and slaughtered every male child two years and below…  

The devil does not and will never see the whole picture or fit in all the puzzle before it is revealed; but he works desperately, relentlessly and diligently to come up with possible scenarios that he can if not destroy then delay. God allows this for two known reasons: one he is the devil for a reason and does have a season alloted him to perform. Two: God wants to teach us to wise-up and be just as diligent in protecting our promises. And as He ‘teaches our hands to war’, we gain indispensable knowledge lest we deteriorate and waste away. “My people are destroyed from lack of knowledge. ‘Because you have rejected knowledge, I also reject you as my priests;” Hosea 4:6   “With their mouths the godless destroy their neighbors, but through knowledge the righteous escape.”  Proverbs 11:8-10

Here is the greatest scenario of all time; they hear through the prophets and the spying mediums that Jesus is indeed the Christ and would be the ‘Way to Redemption’. So they fight hard to dis-credit Him among the religious, cast him aside and away from them, (“The stone the builders rejected has become the cornerstone;”) Mark 12:9-11, accuse him falsely and then plan their final attack: betrayal to crucifixion. They are feeling so good… they succeeded after all these years to prevent the plan or so they think. They launch forward and nailed that ‘carpenter’… but wait a pair of minutes, oops! That was the plan: the price could only be paid on the cross through crucifixion. May the hallelujahs roll please. Ours is an Awesome Indescribable and Mighty God!!!

Yeah the seers did snoop out some snippets from my ‘5D heavenly vision and promised life’, but in their evil saturated motives and relentless strikes; God marched in from the back stage and sealed the deal. I am besides myself in jubilation. Feel free to join me – if my God is your God that is…

Operation: Re-align, Re-locate and Re-group.

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“Elijah went before the people and said, “How long will you waver between two opinions? If the LORD is God, follow him; but if Baal is God, follow him.” But the people said nothing.”
1 Kings 18:20-22

The people said nothing now, but a few verses later: they wished they had promptly aligned themselves with Elijah while they could. Now they were left to grapple with a burned down altar and hundreds of wasted, dead baal worshipping and Jezebel carousing prophets. There is only One God, One Way and One Truth. If the deal is not completely of God; no matter how good it sounds it is Satanic! Can you imagine what would have happened if the Israelites had applied olive oil or anything else other than the ‘blood of the lamb’ on their door posts as God commanded. They would have been stone dead; diligently smitten by the ‘death angel’ and next…

“When the LORD goes through the land to strike down the Egyptians, he will see the blood on the top and sides of the door frame and will pass over that doorway, and he will not permit the destroyer to enter your houses and strike you down.”
Exodus 12:22-24

Finally the terrorized Pharaoh had bowed his knotted knees to the One True GOD. And God had a plan for deliverance for His people. He could have just waved a wand and had them all match out in victory; but He required some obedient participation on their part. They had to be in agreement with Him and claim their victory by heeding and obeying His instructions. Though the instruction seemed trivial and burdensome ; in it lay life, freedom and provision. With all the expectation that lay in the balance, you will be surprised to find out that some of the Israelites did not obey; whilst some of the Egyptians fearing for their life and exercising eternal wisdom obeyed the command initially given to the Jews. And GOD being big on obedience, honored their (the Egyptians)  participation.

” And a ‘mixed multitude’ went up also with them; and flocks, and herds, even very much cattle”. Exodus 12:37-39

The ‘mixed multiude’ were the uncircumcised Egyptians (believers playing the fence and living a lie); but God allowed them, because He was all about redemption and saving as many as would receive Him (turn and repent from their evil ways). Their intent to follow the Israelites showed a gradual turning from idolatry and wickedness; howbeit slight. Later in the book of Joshua, while the Israelites were still in the wilderness, God would command Joshua to circumcise them a second time (cleansing and genuine repentance because God is HOLY!). “At that time the LORD said unto Joshua, Make thee sharp knives, and circumcise again the children of Israel the second time. Joshua 5:1-3
 So even though God had allowed them to switch sides last-minute (avoiding judgement); He would still deal with their sin, hearts and motive (lingering consequences). It was imperative that their final underlying motive not be to escape the plague that befell Egypt (Hell) but that it be an honest desire to pursue God’s truth, obey and uphold it.

I happened upon two women yesterday, though not at the same time and they don’t know each other either.  When the encounter was over : I was once again reminded about how Awesome, Powerful and Wise our God is. These two women I had known over the years as we dwelt and fellowshipped together. Actually a combination of over twenty years between two of them. One even knew me when I was a ‘tiny little thing’ (if ever that time existed) and she had not yet been saved then. Well over the course of the past ten years, they (the aforementioned) turned against me. There was no reason: they just perceived that my enemy was stronger and of better resources, so they jumped ship as they actively worked hard to please my oppressor and harm me. Their demeanor yesterday was a far cry from what I had come to expect from them and the likes of them.

They had gone through hell; a fraction of what I had already experienced in ‘the house’. They were flabbergasted, overwhelmed and very humbled. They no longer glared at me with their usual un-warranted, disdainful and condescending attitude. They did not snicker or add their ‘six cents’ into my business. Even the usual assembly was dismissed for lack of a brave speaker and a stable podium. “Behold, they shall surely gather together, but not by me: whosoever shall gather together against thee shall fall for thy sake.” Isaiah 54:14-16
They too had been put on the spot, their lives re-arranged without permission and their dreams dashed with the fist of the oppressor. I was going to walk away from them; lest it be yet another set-up. But God said: “I purposely let you run into them to show you what I am doing”. They promised me they were now ‘aware of what time it was’ (had seriously paid a price to arrive at this place) and were desperately up in arms in prayer. They sadly wished they had known better and earlier. I assured them it was ‘better late than never’. We hugged praised the One Who is worthy of all the glory and honor and stepped right back into our various purposes and missions…

“And he lifted up his face to the window, and said, Who is on my side? who?…”
2 Kings 9:31-33

Theoretically of course 🙂

What is in a name? (A tribute to Mt. Zion)

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River Cam, Cambridge, Cambridgeshire, England,...

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“What’s in a name? That which we call a rose, by any other name would smell as sweet.” Shakespeare‘s: Romeo and Juliet (II,ii, 1-2) 

“Then the man said, ‘Your name will no longer be Jacob, but Israel, because you have struggled with God and with humans, and have overcome.” Genesis 32:28

“Beautiful in its loftiness, the joy of the whole earth, like the heights of Zaphon is Mount Zion, the city of the Great King”. Psalm 48:2

A name is  a word or term used for identification. Names can identify a class or category of things, or a single thing, either uniquely or within a given context. In the ancient world, particularly in the ancient near-east (Israel, Persia, Egypt etc.) names were thought to be extremely powerful and to act, in some ways, as a separate manifestation of a person, deity, or group. In the Old Testament, the names of individuals are meaningful: for example, Adam is named after the ‘earth’ (Adamah) from which he was created. (Genesis 2)  Based on all we have gathered so far, a change of name would have to be a change of status and possible a change of mission. For example, Jacob’s name was changed from’ deceiver’ (he defrauded and dealt dishonestly) to’ Israel’ (he wrestled with God and made it out alive; so to speak). His change of name showed his intent and status had changed and he was now on a different mission. The patriarch ‘Abram’ and his wife ‘Sarai’ were renamed Abraham and Sarah when they were told they would become the father and mother of many nations (See Genesis 17). Basically with their change of name; it was time to set up the nursery. Simon Barjonah (son of Jonah) had his name changed to Peter the ‘Rock’, when Christ Jesus handed him the keys to heaven. throughout  the bible, characters are given names that reflect something that happened significantly before or during birth; or names that might describe a direction or cause of action. Solomon derived from the root word ‘Shalom’ means peace. Therefore throughout his reign as Israel’s king, there was no warfare (I am literally ‘hatin’ right now).

When Institutions, corporations, companies, firms and groups are named; it is often after the founder, location, the mission or motto of the intended course. For example, most Wall Street firms are named after their founders and most Law firms after their existing partners. Religious institutions, often opt for location, denomination, creed or mission e.g. ‘Abundant Life ministries‘, ‘Blue-Creek Baptist Church’ etc. As years go by and time passes on, founders die, buildings change, edifices are renovated, and even locations may alter. But the essence and the name of the Institution is rarely ever disturbed. This may be due in part to the fact that as long as the mission has not changed, it is duly unnecessary for the name to be changed. And also for respect and preserving the ‘spirit’ of prolongitivity. In addition, it very well may be due in part to a desire to receive a baton with the intent of preserving the original goal and mission. I am often wary and suspicious of characters that must thrive and be unduly famed on the brows of others. If your mission or non-mission must be pursued; then start your own playground from the scratch. I have done it before. At the ripe old age of twenty-one I registered my first company in this city (there are ample and credible witnesses).  “Remove not the old landmark; and enter not into the fields of the fatherless: For their Reedeemer is mighty; He shall plead their cause with thee.” Proverbs 23:10-11 

Did you know that the second oldest and prestigious university in the English-speaking world is Cambridge University. Cambridge the town; was named after the River Cam (with a bridge), from which the university was subsequently named. That was the year 1226, a whooping 800 plus years ago. Today it still stands; still majestically spewing out Scholars, integrity and prestige. The Oxford University which is the oldest in the English-speaking world is second to none. A home and origin to the finest of Scholars, Kings and Statesmen a 1000 years and counting, is still distinguished OXFORD!. The oldest Institution of higher education in the United States is Harvard University. Named after the College’s first benefactor, the young minister John Harvard of Charlestown, who died in 1638. In fact a statue (though we do not promote idolatry) of John Harvard stands today in front of University Hall in Harvard Yard, and is perhaps the University’s best known landmark. Yale College‘s roots can be traced back to the 1640’s when colonial clergymen led an effort to establish a college in New Haven. But it was named “Yale College” in 1718 in gratitude to the Welsh merchant Elihu Yale, who had donated the proceeds of the sale of some personal acquisitions. Today in that beautiful quaint Connecticut town still stands Yale College. These aforementioned and prestigious universities have been chancelled, governed and led by the best of the best; the finest Scholars and the ‘cream of the crop’ in higher learning for a total of almost 2000 years. Every one has come and gone, and left it in the fine and traditional state they met it (with the name intact of course).    

There are some people who though not perfect (neither of us are), lived a worthy life and left a commendable legacy. Their integrity shows that whatever they did or accomplished was carefully and prayerfully thought through. We trust that they had a vision and their very lives and mission blessed that endeavour. A name says a lot and plays a part in the continuity and the value of a group, a person and /or an institution. A diversion from truth to a seemingly look-alike version is not the truth. It almost sounds like the statement: “I am almost saved”.  If you are you will say it and to some extent it will be perceived and eventually seen. God is always specific in His dealings with us; that is why He has a different name for different attributes of His Deity and character. When He calls Himself ‘Jehovah Rapha’; it means exactly the God that heals you, not the God that looks or sounds like a doctor. Jehovah Jireh is definitely the God that provides; not the God that looks like He might provide or has some provisions, but actually does give.

“For ye are not come unto a mount that might be touched, and that burned with fire, and unto blackness, and darkness, and tempest, and the sound of a trumpet, and the voice of words; which voice they that heard entreated that no word more should be spoken unto them: for they could not endure that which was enjoined, If even a beast touch the mountain, it shall be stoned; and so fearful was the appearance, that Moses said, I exceedingly fear and quake: but ye are come unto Mount Zion, and unto the city of the living God, the heavenly Jerusalem, and to innumerable hosts of angels, to the general assembly and Church of the first-born who are enrolled in heaven, and to God the Judge of all, and to the spirits of just men made perfect, and to Jesus the Mediator of a new covenant, and to the blood of sprinkling that speaketh better than that of Abel. See that ye refuse not Him that speaketh. For if they escaped not, when they refused him that warned them on earth, much more shall not we escape, who turn away from Him that warneth from heaven: whose voice then shook the earth: but now He hath promised, saying, Yet once more will I make to tremble not the earth only, but also the heaven. And this word, Yet once more, signifieth the removing of those things that are shaken, as of things that have been made, that those things which are not shaken may remain. Wherefore, receiving a kingdom that cannot be shaken, let us have grace, whereby we may offer service well-pleasing to God with reverence and awe, for our God is a consuming fire.“—Hebrews 12:18-29 (R.V.).

“For out of Jerusalem will come a remnant, and out of Mount Zion a band of survivors. ‘The zeal of the LORD Almighty will accomplish this.” 2 Kings 19:31 “But He chose the tribe of Judah, Mount Zion, which he loved.” Psalm 78:68 The name has said it all.

God Is A Warrior (Part 3)

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“For the LORD your God is He that goeth with you, to fight for you against your enemies, to save you.” Deuteronomy 20:4 (KJV)

“Proclaim this among the nations: Prepare for war! Rouse the Warriors! Let all the fighting men draw near and attack”. Joel 3:9 (NIV)

Through some strange turn of events, ( actually the deranged King Saul would not leave him alone). David decided to seek refuge with the Philistines; who were enemies of Israel. He had to feign madness, drool on his beard in a disgusting display of delirium and insanity; to be accepted by them. And accept him they did (notice: because he was no longer a threat). Here is a little nugget from a seasoned (but not old) warrior; if you always please everybody, all the time in all your wonderful ways, then you are not really amounting to much and could not be advancing. People would prefer you remain in that state; where you are neither a hindrance, competition or a threat. You should have people who are in-tune with God (first and foremost), with His work in your life, and you like wise with God’s work in their life. Anyway, back to war we go. So the Philistines remembered David as a valiant warrior and they sure remembered he was the one who felled Goliath. They probably figured in his very distressed and disambiguated state; and also with the demon-oppressed and God rejected King Saul following hard on his heels, he (David) would be loyal to the  Philistine army. So the king of Philistine gave him the city of Ziklag. “Then Achish gave him Ziklag that day: wherefore Ziklag pertaineth unto the Kings of Judah unto this day.”  1 Samuel 27:6.  

So there came a very strange day, when the Philistine had to go to battle at Aphek, and their opponents were the Israelites. And guess who went to war with the Philistine, our very own David. I strongly believe that had David been allowed to go all the way to war, he would not have harmed the Israelites (his people). David feared God and was really a ‘man after God’s heart’ regardless of the confusion that was his life at this point. (The first book of Samuel Chapter twenty-seven expounds on this: “Whenever David attacked an area, he did not leave a man or a woman alive,…and such was his practice as long as he lived in Philistine territory. Achish trusted David, and said to himself, ‘he has (David) become so obnoxious to his people, the Israelites, that he will be my servant for life.’ 1 Samuel 27:8-12.) I told you as much.  When someone  has had a genuine conversion to Christ, even though they fail and make mistakes (which we all do), you will still see that the underlying factor in everything they do is geared towards preserving the house and the people of God. Their heart though troubled, hurt and weak is real and right. But when people dubiously and demonicaly weave their ‘agenda-laden’ (can’t make it in the world) selves into the Kingdom of God ;everything they touch howbeit selfishly, will eventually if not sooner have a moral, integral, financial and finally community-bonding decay that stinks to the ‘high-heavens.’ The stench of  their wickedness constantly having broken-lives preceding it  and/or being attached to it.  Back to the Philistine commanders; they were suspicious of David’s intention. As if reading David’s inner-most thoughts and secret (kingdom-protecting deeds), refused to let him go to Aphek with them. Even though King Achish trusted David and really liked him and probably said as much, the commanders still expected that he (David) would turn on them in the battle. So they refused to allow him to go to battle on behalf of the Philistines. After much sulking and cajoling with the King of the Philistines Achish, David and his men returned to Ziklag not so crestfallen I must add.

When they got to Ziklag, they found it engulfed in a belly of smoke; And their wives and children gone. Once again Amalek had attacked the Israelites at a vulnerable and disadvantaged time (COWARDS!). The spirit of Amalek sneaks around to cause havoc and devastation, but does not have the guts to face any opponent. They might even go as far as using aliases, false identifications and camouflages. David’s men were so devastated, that they wanted to stone him.’ ‘Some people will hang out with you and sing your accolade as long as you are in charge and make provision for them. But when that security net is threatened or destroyed, they will conveniently turn on you. Having no human to lean on or to console him; David sought solace in the Lord, and encouraged himself in God. (This is what the Lord is always after in our lives anyhow; that we always run to him, in both good and bad times).

Then he asked God the ‘million dollar’ question dreaded by so many of us:“…Shall I pursue them?” Basically, David is gearing for the offensive here. Play time and diplomatic talks were now over. Murder was ‘all she wrote’, and it was time to pry the bloody pen from her proudly clenched iron-fists.  He had lost all his remaining belongings and family, after months and even years on the lam. Until you have been on the receiving end of a very thorough and relentless attack that left you bereft; you will judge those that ‘taketh the Kingdom by force’ thereby causing the kingdom of God to suffer violence.’ He could have been like; ‘Oh God knows what happened, let us maintain the peace (there was never any peace in the first place, it was war-time!) and in God’s time, maybe (just maybe?) the Amalekites would repent and return our families and stuff.’ Really? Yeah right, wishful thinking! Little wonder God Himself: the merciful and kind One, the All forgiving and perfectly loving One; said to wipe out those weasels from the face of the earth.

“Remember what the Amalekites did to you along the way, when you came out of Egypt. When you were weary and wornout, they met you on your journey and attacked all who were lagging behind; they had no fear of God. When the Lord your God gives you rest from all the enemies around you in the land He is giving you to possess as an inheritance, you shall blot out the name of Amalek from under heaven. Do not forget!” Deuteronomy 25:17-19 (NIV) After that warning back in Deuteronomy (maybe not chronological), this is what happened in Judges: “Whenever the Israelites planted their crops, the Midianites, Amalekites and other eastern Peoples invaded the country.” Judges 6:3

For God to tell us to do away with a situation and all that it encompasses, that means that in the unforeseen future (unforeseen by us mere mortals, but foreseen by God the Almighty), that thing, person or situation will come back more detrimental and more destructive than it was in the first place. It has been programmed from the beginning of time to be bad for us. We don’t make it good-by associating with it while disobeying God. If God says it is not of Him and not good for us, we do well to heed His word and warning. The Amalekites kept showing up and causing havoc. In the first installment of God is a warrior, we learnt that Amalek was a descendant of Esau. But what does that really mean? Let us do a little historical snooping to see if there was something about these relentless and hateful enemies we had missed the first time. Amalek was the grand-son of Esau and his first wife Adah. Twice in Genesis (36), the scripture refers to Amalek as Adah’s grandsons; because as pertaining to the Jewish culture, their real identity will originate from their mother. Adah was from Canaan, the daughter of Elon the Hittite. First and foremost, remember the Israelites were commanded by the Lord not to be inter-married with the Canaanites. And also remember that when Esau married the two Canaanite women; they drove Rebekah his mother crazy. Hittite the father of Adah, who was Amalek’s grandmother was the son of Canaan. Canaan was the son of Ham, who was the son of Noah. And who is Ham? Ham was the son cursed by Noah, after he had seen his father’s nakedness. Ham the great, great, grand-father of Amalek, was cursed by his father to be a slave and servant to Shem (See Genesis 9:24-27). Shem happened to be the father and origin of the Israelites. So now we see; though relatives (distant cousins to be precise), Amalek was fueled by greed, envy, jealousy and a disobedient resistance to his destiny and much deserved fate. The spirit of Amalek will always desire what is not theirs because; they are constantly at odds with who and what God made them to be. Therefore, they that have the favor of God are a moving target! They are most often angry at God, for something they perceive that God should have done differently. That anger projected at God will subsequently open the door to other spirits, possession and demonic activities.

Therefore; when David got his matching orders, he did not stop to find out who was in agreement or better still who liked him for obeying God. He had long since found out that ‘If God be for you, who can be against you…’ He obeyed God, gave chase with some of his men, overtook  ‘the down right annoying Amalekites’ and recovered all that was his. Absolutely everything, and I believe he got some spoils plenty. Contrary to David’s inquiry and obedience; Saul would prove to be wiser than God. And as always his punishment for disobedience cost him and his generation painfully. “Because you did not obey the Lord or carry out His fierce wrath against the Amalekites, the Lord has done this to you today.” 1 Samuel 28:18 ‘This’ was the defeat of Israel by the Amalekites and the death of Saul and his sons. It was a steep price to pay for something that could have been avoided. Even before this utter foolishness, was the case of Agag the King of the Amalekites (see 1 Samuel 15:2-4), which Saul spared against God’s orders. God said destroy; man, woman, child, infant, cattle camel etc. It sounds harsh and mean; but not to be God’s advocate (He does not need one at all), an infant eventually grows to be a descendant and obligated to family traditions. Thus the vicious cycle of attack, defend and attack all over again.

I leave you with two verses; maybe there will be a fourth installment: only God knows. “And He sent you on a mission saying, ‘go and completely destroy those wicked people, the Amalekites; wage war against them, until you have wiped them out.” 1 Samuel 15:18. “Amalek was first among the nations, but their end will be utter destruction.” Numbers 24:20. Everytime God starts to move or do a new thing; the devil tries to counterfeit it. There is suddenly what seems like a move in God’s direction; do not be fooled it is a different and a more deadly (Jezebelic) tactic! In the days to come even the devil will claim to be talking about war and victory in order to water down the work of God’s servants and gain enough information to undermine the servant and true work of God. But the last time I checked; THE DEVIL IS A LIAR AND IS DEFEATED!!! Alleluiah!

To Russia Without Love (of man; but with the favor of GOD!)

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“Joseph is a fruitful vine, a fruitful vine near a spring, whose branches climb over a wall. With bitterness archers attacked him; they shot at him with hostility. But his bow remained steady, his strong arms stayed limber, because of the hand of the Mighty One of Jacob, because of the Shepherd, the Rock of Israel, because of your father’s God, who helps you, because of the Almighty who blesses you…” Genesis 49:22-25 (NIV)

CAUTION: The story you are about to read now, is very accurate, and is vividly being relayed to my memory right this moment by the Holy Spirit (Even down to the clothes I was wearing on the day of departure.) I do not keep notes or diaries: they are cumbersome and unnecessarily incriminating. Besides if I needed notes or a journal for this story, I would have none because every thing that was in the mentioned Upper-East side apartment is gone. Everything from custom-made furnitures to pictures, to awards are gone (That could also be credited to Jezebel’s account). Therefore, I am eternally grateful to God the Creator for my notoriously and impeccably ‘Photographic Memory’. Enjoy and be blessed…

I did one last walk through my Upper-East Side apartment; as I gave my guest a list of ’emergency’ phone numbers. They had just come in from Africa, so it was wise to make sure they had back-up should a situation arise that they did not understand or know what to do with. My building Superintendent was already waiting at the lobby downstairs, beaming with a smile and the utmost respect as he reached out to help us with the luggage. He had already called a cab he quickly informed me. There was no need to be late for anything this beautiful Sunday morning he had quipped. Ever since he found out I was preparing for a church-led mission trip to the ‘former Soviet Union’, he had been besides himself. Having originally hailed from the Eastern European country of Sarajevo himself, he felt it was noble for one to leave the comfort of the United States and pay their way to go that far off to help out. He even came with me to church one time, as he claimed I was a peculiar but great tenant. “But ye are a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a peculiar people;…” 1 Peter 2:9 (KJV). “Who gave Himself for us, that He might redeem us from all iniquity, and purify unto Himself, a peculiar people, zealous of good works.” Titus 2:14 (KJV). “For thou art a holy people unto the Lord thy God, and the Lord hath chosen thee to be a peculiar people unto Himself, above all the nations that are upon the earth.” Deuteronomy 14:2 (KJV) Need I say more? Most times, just let them call you weird; it means you are doing right by God.

The weeks and months preceding this day had been very rigorous and stressful. It was not the trip itself that caused the stress, but the ultra-preparation and the attack of the mind that often accompanied a decision like this. Then there was the human element to deal with, the walls of suspicion barricading those of us who were not part of the ‘church click’ and the  judgements of those myopic natives that ‘labeled different as bad.’  All these nuances, had to be pulled down among team members to create a necessary bond. One weekly meeting after the other, we learned about each other, skits, language phrases (This was already one of my fluent languages), songs, the culture and the people of the intended destination. This was the biggest trip so far that the church had embarked on. The year was 1998 (approximately 13 long years ago).

It behooves me to note that one of the main reasons I quickly applied for this trip; was to help with what I perceived to be much-needed communications. The Russian language was not a ‘walk in the park’ and the alphabets were symbols that were in no way similar to English language alphabets. I mentioned this helpful skill, but it was so easily dismissed by the higher-ups (with no intent to investigate or prove the claim). So I made a decision to keep that and future skills to myself, since that was not the first time I volunteered to help with something which they insecurely brushed aside as I watched them struggle to meet the same need shortly after. I knew it was personal; no one unaccepted in the click could be productive for Jesus (as if they themselves were doing anything lucrative). So I let them cut their losses (which was unfortunately not really theirs, but the Lord’s house) and shut my ears. I did eventually help out my innocent team mates with their ‘language phrases’ and songs, since it was so hard to see them struggle. I knew the leaders that clicked with (you know who) were always watching me… for what, I don’t know. I find it interesting that people with very twisted and shady pasts, whom God has saved from a lot of incriminating and devious situations, can deliberately and baselessy pore over another person’s otherwise open and obvious life.

So fifteen minutes later and a woozy taxi ride to show for it, I was in the church premises. A group of people had already gathered and were filling out tags for their luggage. We were to fill a tag for each luggage and then load it together with those of our team members. Each team would travel in their van, bus or car together and check-in together at the airport. the reason being that when we arrived in Russia the same sequence would be necessary to cart everyone away to their already assigned camps, with luggage et al. I complied accordingly. I saw my other team members, we all hugged and expressed our excitement on finally being on our way to this much-anticipated trip. The people traveling that morning were asked to seat at the front row, so that they would be prayed for. I already sat in the front row anyhow (I never wanted to miss any word out of my Pastor David’s sermon) much to some people’s chagrin. The service commenced as the trip and the trippers were prayed for.

We the ‘trippers’ had been instructed to head straight to the alley way right next to/behind the sanctuary right after the ten o’clock morning service. During the service, I had danced, jumped, hollered and rejoiced in the Lord for this opportunity to serve in one of my favorite places on planet earth. I was also rejoicing due to the deliverance and relief from months of mental, emotional and financial anguish. I guess the ‘archers’ having seen me praising my faithful God; assumed that I was having too much of a good time. Therefore, as soon as the service was over; the leader from another team came over to me to tell me that I had been switched to her team. My former leader did not even have the decency to tell me, that my training with them was quite futile. I now know better, because I had observed them to be of the same cloth as their mistress. After four months of grueling adjustments to achieve fellowship and bonding (which is why the missions department stressed our need to be in the weekly meetings) I was being bumped to another team, moments before heading to the airport. And guess what? I was the only one that they dared to do that to. I later found out in Russia, that ‘her evil highness’ intended to work and stay in the same camp as with my original team: therefore my very presence was repugnant to her! So away with her she commanded. I found that hard to believe then, because I really believed she was of God. I even went as far as defending her, as I had always done for her and her husband for seventeen years! Now look how stupid I am presumed to be; even people wondered if I had any discernment at all… Today I stand regretful, they were right indeed. All her commands or conniving requests were aimed at my detriment.  I had most often been told by certain leaders, to tone down my exuberance for the things of God (meanwhile my founding Pastor preached: “give your all to Jesus”), I know it bothered her a lot. Remember the ‘spirit of Jezebel’ hates true worshipers with a passion. If they cannot kill them dead, they will frustrate their lives. I am the more blessed for not paying them any mind: (1) Because they did not save and sanctify me; and (2) I am seldom affected or swayed by peer pressure or mass rejection. I have long since learnt as a little girl, that eagles have to fly alone most times.

Of course when we finally got to Russia, after two and a half days of traveling. I was told with great aplomb, that my luggage was nowhere to be found. Once again, all the other three hundred travelers had all their stuff intact and available. (I dare anyone to deny this fact!!!). It had been left behind they said. They always believed they were dealing with a buffoon when it came to me; what they did not know is that I have been travelling since I was six months old, and had practically covered the globe by the age of eighteen. So if anyone knew about travel dynamics, it was definitely me. That luggage had been thrown aside on purpose, in order to throw me off and disorient me during the trip. It is finished, and another ‘fatal file’ hits the dust. I am free.

I shall stop now. This is not the prelude to a man-hunt, but the awareness of what we are dealing with. There were more terrible incidents that happened, and left me flabbergasted and bewildered. I will leave the personal ones in God’s capable hand; as He will give me back everything that was stolen from me. “I will restore/repay you for the years the locust have eaten…” Joel 2:25 (NIV). These that I have shared, were picked because the attacks became a distraction and a major hindrance to producing and promoting the work of God. They were deeply orchestrated to stop the work of God in me and through me. I feel the Holy Spirit saying that I am not the only one that was a target, but I have been given a unique forum to cry out with and warn. Can anyone with such an unprovoked, wicked, deceitful and devilish motive be of God. Every truly godly, person was greatly affected; some just don’t know it yet.

Epilogue: We see how God allowed the enemy to show his true colors, and then sovereignly thwarted the effects and damage it was meant to cause. Every morning in my humble unassuming and dilapidated room in the Russian camp, the kids would come to my window and call out my name. They did not call the group, they called my name! God figured: if they would gang-up, single me out to abuse me, then he would single me out for unmerited and uncommon favor. The kids would steal away grapes and bring to me. If they heard any gossip among the counselors, they would share it with me :). They loved on me like I was their flesh and blood. When that news spread all over the camp, the enemies backed-off howbeit for a season and to re-group. Thus did my Heavenly Father, turn their evil for my good and preserve my very life.

Let him who has ears hear what the Spirit is saying to the church… Thank you for taking this journey with me; you have been God’s specially appointed Therapist. May His grace and peace always be yours now and forever. Amen.

Lasting Legacies (Part Three)

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Lasting Legacies: Parts  One and Two: Highly Recommended.

After finding out that I had held the church hostage; not necessarily against their will, I could not wait to disappear with my friends. That way they (the church folks) would forget what I had done with the passing of time or so I thought. After the fellowship that dragged longer than usual, every one was in a beautiful mood and the love of God saturated that sanctuary. As I collected my belongings and prepared to hit the road with my friends, guess who came running towards us. That is exactly right; precious Pastor Harold (may his soul rest in perfect peace). He wanted to know how long I was in town for, because there was one more huge thing, they would need my help for and they were pretty sure the Lord had sent me there for that purpose, among others. ‘Ask on Pastor Harold,’ I thought, ‘you are one fearless and guileless man: bless your heart.’ ‘And besides who am I to say no, should the Lord see fit to use such a title-less and position-less servant of His.

Every Wednesday, this simple church; though not necessarily abundant with resources would bus in youth from a shelter, project and I believe a correctional facility. Then the Youth Ministry would host them with the word, skits, music and food and then bus them right back to their various places of shelter and/or incarceration. They did this diligently and sacrificially week after week; and I must tell you it was drudgery. So much so that ninety percent of the time it felt that they were getting nowhere with these inner-city kids; and the kids acted like they did not care to be bothered. But these church folks were the real deal, without the fanfare or cameras rolling or the ‘pent-house’ carousal; they plowed on for the ‘souls of these youth and the glory of the Most High God.’ There they labored in obscurity, while just across the region (In the home-front); some that were made stewards over a whole lot more, sought human heads on platters of self-serving treachery.

Pastor Harold needed me to speak to the kids the following Wednesday, after the Sunday. Since my return plane ticket was for Friday, I humbly accepted the challenge. What you do not know, was that prior to the Pastor’s request, I had absolutely no desire to deal with preteens and teenagers. They were out of control, angry and absurdly unruly, I had observed. Once when the Assistant Director of the Children’s Ministry had asked me to consider working with the High Schoolers as opposing to the cute little Kindergartners, I relented. Now that I look back, I think it was more because of the leaders I had to work with in that department. Since I Knew at that time there was an unspoken order to alienate me from fellowship (thanks to Jezebel and company), I just simply sought solace with those who guilelessly saw Jesus in me. I have zero tolerance for petty and fleshly motivated trivialities, especially in the house of God.

At that time in my life, approximately five months before the encounter with the Southern-Baptist Church. God began to work out a burden in my heart for these young people. Eventually, through various divinely orchestrated happenings or should I say mishappenings, I got a not so deep revelation: howbeit a relevant one. They had no one to teach them. Barely little or no role model. The moral decay in the society was so rampant and accepted as the norm, that these poor kids were exposed to perversion before they understood what it was to be a kid. They had been robbed unfairly. Having absolutely no say in how they showed up in this world (Yes of course God loves them but there are still consequences to live with, most often produced by generational sins and carelessness) the twisted chaos of their existence produced a revolt in them. They were not necessarily bad; they just did not know what good was or how to be it. The disobedience and rebellion that I observed; was actually a desperate cry for help. A cry for someone who would not delve into their grime with them (In a fake attempt at acceptance), but someone who will with a genuine anointing, or touch from God, pull them out of it.

In the days leading up to Wednesday, I searched and prodded for a word for these kids – nothing. I asked God for a word so that these brutal and mean kids did not stone me to death, when I started stuttering in front of them. God asked me if my motivation was staying alive, or leading the kids to freedom from their dead situations. I had to calm down, I realized that I could not win this war with worry or in the flesh. By Tuesday night, I was frantic; no word, no new revelation and definitely no voice (since I had conveniently caught a cold). By Wednesday morning, I was a distraught mess. And I had contemplated calling Pastor Harold to tell him I could not make it anymore. But no sooner had I reached for the phone, than I fell into a deep sleep. So deep that my friend had to wake me up in time for me to shower, change and be chauffeured to the ‘war-zone’.

So here I was, unprepared and unguarded (In case a riot broke out due to my ‘Jesus is Lord’ mantra). I sat at the back of the Church when we first arrived, hoping that the youth ministry leader would act like some people I was used to dealing with in the home front. They would have relented at my serving those kids at the last-minute (due to orders from her ‘evil majesty’- Cruella). But these people had integrity and godly fear that was untainted by their thankless toiling. I was still sitting there at the back when the bus arrived, and the kids started streaming in. They were hard-looking boys, loud and scantily clad (girls), and daring varieties of both sexes. It was while I watched them that the Spirit of the Most High God (that cannot be purchased through usury) fell on me. As the service commenced, I released my angst to the Lord. I enjoyed the worship so much that when the Speaker was finally introduced, I clapped with everyone else and sat down out of habit. Three pokes, four nudges and a cue from that dear Youth Pastor later; I matched undauntedly to the stage…

God spoke, sang and moved and so did the kids along with Him. The altar-call was very humbling. Eighty-five percent of those spiritually hungry kids rushed forward to give their lives to their Savior. They gave me the greatest gift ever; their tears and brokenness. They asked only one thing from me though: to send them some bibles when I got back to my home church. That would have been at least sixty to seventy bibles. When I got back, I excitedly spoke to the Senior Pastor of the church I attended (I will reserve my comment on what transpired). He said I should speak to the missions director; which I did first by phone and then via e-mail. I must mention that after all that had transpired in that town, and just before I flew back to my home church, my new Baptist friends asked me which church I attended. When I told them the name of the church, about sixty-five percent of them had heard of the founding Pastor. And quite a percentage of that received his ‘Newsletter’. They spoke highly of him and his ministry. I was glad to have been a conduit of good report.

When I followed-up later to check up on the kids and how every thing went (especially if they received the promised bibles)… They were reluctant to take my call and seemed very disappointed and hurt about something. When I asked my friend to intervene and find out what happened…I was embarrassed and mortified. Needless to say, the church was no more held in such high esteem. ‘Cruella’ (aka Jezebel) had no doubt given her camouflaged and insidious orders as always. As long as I was involved in it, regardless of who got hurt she had to poison it. God is just; and will fix all those years of unprovoked, undeserved evil plots, attacks and heart aches that were viciously and mercilessly (yet they speak of mercy now), inflicted on this writer.

PS: Here in are the legacies that lasted. Pastor David Wilkerson, Pastor Harold… and a host of them that just obeyed God. Right after Pastor Harold’s obedience to God’s preparation in my life; doors were opened all over the country. I never asked for them or expected them either. I had been so beaten up in ministry, that I was re-thinking my course. Howbeit, in subtle and unexpected ways: God had Pastors invite me to their church to minister. For the records; God did not only use Godly men to open doors. He used unbelievers, liars, devils (unbeknownst to them), impostors etc. He is God, He can use anything He wants. To Him be all the glory!!!

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