SPIRIT OF LOVE
I Am Love
John Chapter 17; Galatians 4:1-7; I John 4:16
Wherever two or more are gathered in My Name, there I am in the midst of
them. You who know the fullness of My Spirit also know His sweet savor of
divine love. Its unction flows through you and among you, drawing you
closer to one another and uniting you in one heart and one mind; for in
the Garden of Gethsemane Jesus prayed:
Father, let them be one, even as
You and I are one.
Jesus sent forth His disciples to proclaim the glad message of My
redeeming Love. In the beginning My followers were full of My Joy. Why?
They had been released from the bondage of fear. Through faith in Christ,
they had been born again as My dear children. They were no longer mere
servants, but sons.
All their lives they had seen Me only as a celestial Lawgiver Who
made tough demands on them. Their lives had centered around observing all
the ordinances of Mosaic Law, fearing lest they should break any of them
and incur My disfavor. They loved Me from a distance.
I knew from the beginning that fallen man could not perfectly keep My
Law. Ultimately, man is not a sinner because he sins; rather, he sins
because he is a sinner by nature! My Law was given to make mankind aware
of his total depravity and need for a Redeemer . I, the Living God, sent
My Son to the earth to be born of the Virgin Mary, that He might live
among you in human flesh and live His life in perfect obedience to His
Only Christ could qualify to redeem people from the penalty of broken
Law, for he lived out His entire life without committing a single sin.
He was not crucified to pay for His own sins, for there weren’t any.
Through the shedding of perfectly innocent Blood, he atoned for the sins
of all who would accept His free offer of salvation, whether born before
or after His Atonement. Otherwise, I could not have justly forgiven one
After My Son returned to heaven, I sent My Holy Spirit to live in the
hearts of My people, for they needed His strength, power and consolation.
That sweet Spirit of Grace ever whispers My love to your souls, and divine
joy fills your cup to overflowing. Everything I am to you, everything I
give to you, everything I do for you, is an expression of My Love. All My
commandments are rooted in Love, for My very essence is Love. I am
perfect Love, and I cast out fear. Before the Atonement of Christ, My
people were only permitted to approach Me indirectly, through the
ministrations of a human priest. He would offer animal sacrifices as
temporary substitutes which pointed toward Christ’s Perfect Offering of
Himself. Once Christ had been sacrificed for your sins, I could see you as
righteous in Christ, and you could come boldly into My Holy Presence. I
could love you freely, with no barriers separating us. Now Christ is the
only mediator between God and man, and He and I are one. I could not have
given you a greater proof of My Love. It gives Me no greater joy than to
fellowship with My dear ones, and to lavish My Love upon you.
I Love People, Period
I am Love.
I, Who created the rainbow, love people of every color.
I, Who provide even for sparrows, love the down-and-out.
I, Who was buried in a rich friend’s tomb, love those who have been
I, Who give wisdom to the simple, love those who often stumble.
I, Who instruct the foolish, love those who are wise.
I, the Chief Shepherd, love My sheep and know each precious one by name.
I, Whose Word burns in the hearts of prophets, love those with voices of
I, Who speak in a still small voice, love gentle voices of charity.
I, Whose coming Reign is the only cure for a sick society, love political
I love every one of you who want My love.
Just because loving is what I love to do best.
Love is the undergirding foundation of My entire eternal Kingdom.
I Love You as an Individual
Psalms 142:4-5 John 14:2-3; I Corinthians 12:27-31;
Revelation 2:17 & 3:20
This writer was once emphatically told: “God doesn’t have individual
Christians.” Her companion was all wrong. Some of you have been wrongly
taught that the more you “lose your own identities” and merge into one
mass, the more pleased I am. That is a gross misunderstanding of what the
Body of Christ is all about. Just as each of you has an individual
personality through which I may express myself, each one of you is called
to a different type of ministry. Some prophesy. Some are greatly used to
minister healing to others. Some have a special calling to the mission
field. I have a plan for each one of your lives. You could see it begin
to unfold like a flower, if you would only walk closely with Me and listen
to My Voice moment by moment. Worshipping together as a congregation is
very important. You need the fellowship, strength and support of other
saints. I love to see My children gather together to praise My Name, and
to learn more about Me and My ways. I love those wonderful family
reunions As they meet together in My Name, My saints form the expression
of My Body on earth. I am glorified in this.
But I also have a very special relationship with each one of you
individually. I value, love and cherish you individually, not just
corporately. There are many things you are free to confide only in Me.
Public prayers are necessary at times, but I especially cherish those
times you go into your own room, shut the door behind you, and pour out
your joys and sorrows to Me, Your Father in Heaven. I want you to hold
nothing back from Me. No problem, however perplexing it might be for you,
is beyond the scope of My perfect Wisdom. You matter to Me when you are
alone with Me, not just in a group setting.
I have promised to supply all your needs, for you are My beloved
child. There are times I love to surprise you with what you consider
luxuries, for it brings delight to My heart for You to glorify Me with
your prayer of thanksgiving. I am not tight-fisted. I do not spoil you
till you become obsessed with material things, but I love to grant every
desire of your heart which is truly good for you.
Each one of you is a unique creation. Even identical twins have
individual spirits, and each of them has the responsibility to choose
either life or death. There have been many cases where one twin ended up
in heaven and the other in hell, based on individual acceptance or
rejection of My Son. And, sadly, many people think that just because they
come from a Christian home, their salvation is automatically assured. But
the salvation of parents does not automatically confer eternal life upon
their children. Each individual soul is accountable to Me, and must
accept Christ for himself in order to enter into eternal life. I have
children, but I don’t have grandchildren!
Earthly parents do not expect their children to all have the same
looks, personality, or tastes. It does not alarm them that each of their
children is a unique person in his or her own right. In fact, it would be
a cause for concern if they were all exactly the same. One of the most
prevalent errors in false cults is the suppression of and gradual
stripping away of individual personality. This makes the person less than
what I created him to be, and makes it easier for the cult leader to
deceive his victim. Avoid being ensnared by suspicious groups which try
to draw you in with carefully orchestrated overtures of “love”.
There are times when no one else on earth has much interest in your
spiritual life. Or, you may be in a situation where you must move
frequently. You will, at times, have wonderful fellowship with other
believers. At other times this will be more scarce, for the presence of a
church building does not automatically spell true fellowship. Moreover,
the use of folding chairs instead of padded pews, and that of guitars in
lieu of pipe organs, does not necessarily indicate a place of Liberty in
the Spirit. Some searchers have walked out of informal settings with
heavy hearts, while more than a few have felt the warmth of My Presence
within the context of a so-called “High Church” service.
You need genuine love, not cold formality. A baby will either be
developmentally damaged or die if it is never shown warmth or caring. If
you find yourself in a place where you aren’t being fed spiritually by
men, does it mean that I have cast you off? A thousand times, no.
Whenever people fail you, I will still be there to meet the deepest needs
of your heart. I will spread a spiritual feast before you, and we two will
dine together. I abide ever faithful. I cannot fail you.
How could anyone claim that individuals have little value in My
sight? I have promised in My Word that I am preparing a mansion for each
one of you. I want you to know that when each of you enters heaven, you
will be absolutely thrilled with your new home. I even take into account
the individual tastes of each believer as the plans are drawn up for
construction. All the furnishings reflect the preferences of the
mansion’s future occupant. These homes are stunningly beautiful. I did
not mass-produce regulation army barracks for warehousing saints.
Individual homes have been specially crafted for each of My beloved
I value individuals so much that each of My faithful ones will be
presented with a white stone inscribed with a new name, for the time will
come when I will make all things new. The other believers will never know
the new name I give you. It will be a secret shared only with Me. Now
try to tell Me that individuals don’t matter to Me.
The Sermon of the Daisy
Matthew 6:25-34; Luke 12: 22-32
“In conclusion,” intoned the staid-looking preacher, “remember this
timeworn old adage: ‘God helps those who helps themselves.’ So reflect on
that pearl of wisdom before you visit my counselling office. Your
problems are usually of your own making, and you’ll get little sympathy
from me. I’m an ordained minister of the Gospel, not a shoulder to cry
on, and certainly not a nursemaid for 30-and-40-year-old kids in business
suits who ought to grow up and bear up more gracefully under the minor
vexations of life; people who ought to be applying more elbow grease to
their prayers. As one grand old hymn exhorts us: ‘Shall I be carried to
the skies on flowery beds of ease, while others fought to win the prize
and sailed through bloody seas?”
The young woman could hardly see to drive home, her eyes were so
“What’s the matter, Mommy?” her little girl asked.
“Oh, nothing,” said her mother, unwilling to burden her child with
the truth. “It’s just one of those days.”
In reality she was thinking: How dare he take his frustrations
out on us. Sure he’s tired of having such a heavy counselling load, but
if he had to keep a schedule like mine....the office, the traffic, the
grocery store, the housework, the kids’ homework, their baths, the
cooking, the ironing, the endless errands...she gnashed her teeth.
When the little family got out of the car, the lady unloaded her bags
of after-church shopping. She tripped and dropped a big bag on the lawn.
Noticing her mother was more annoyed than ever, her daughter ran over to
help. In the process she noticed a cluster of daisies at their feet.
“Oh, look, Mommy!” the little girl cried. “Aren’t they pretty? We
learned about the flowers in Sunday School today, how God loves the green
grass so much he decorates it with pretty little flowers even if busy
people like us don’t have time to grow our own from seeds.”
It was then the sun came out for the burdened woman. At that moment
she remembered the Sunday School lessons of her own childhood, and
recaptured her own long-forgotten wonderment at the marvels of My
creation. Smiling happily, she hugged her daughter and son. “Yes,” she
sang, “and God loves us too, sweetie, much more than the flowers and
But that wasn’t the end of the story. When she had a few minutes to
herself, she got out an exhaustive Biblical concordance and searched for
the scripture: “God helps those who help themselves.” Had I come to
earth, she wondered, just to add My own feeble bit to her ceaseless
struggle to live according to My Word, or had I really come to redeem weak
people like herself ? Those who had reached the utter end of her tether
and had to confess: “You’ve got to do it all, Lord, or my life will be a
failure. If your life in me fails, then I cannot overcome the
difficulties of this life”?
She looked and she looked, researching the key word “help” in the
big concordance. She made some very wonderful discoveries there, such
as: “God is my refuge and God is my strength, a very present help in
But to her utter delight, that other “scripture” simply wasn’t in
She simply didn’t have to worry about it anymore.
Love One Another
Isaiah 53:2; 45; John 15:12,17; Luke 16:19:31; I John
When will My people learn to love one another as I have loved the
Behold, I have created diversity in nature, for I love variety in My
handiwork. But many believers cannot tolerate diversity in the
personality or appearance of one another. The hypocrite views with
distaste anyone who hails from a different cultural or economic background
from his own. Or he feels contempt for the person whose personal theology
in all things great and small does not exactly mirror his own.
The hypocrite harbors prejudices against that humble person I love.
The one who is “too fat” or “too unpolished” to sing or minister
publicly. Often the hair or dress style, jewelry or some other trivial
aspect of that person draws fire. For example, if you refuse to befriend
a Muslim woman until she removes her head covering and dons Western
attire, what sort of witness is that to the Love of Christ? How shallow
your “love” is when you show an interest only in people whose culture is
exactly the same as yours. Such a “love” is not My love, so it is
really not even worth sharing!
If a heavyset individual shares My Word, his size is all-important to
the hypocrite, who thinks: If this person truly were Jesus’ disciple,
he or she would fight the Good Fight of Faith the
Battle of the Bulge.
His or her lack of spiritual qualifications could easily be overlooked,
but not those extra pounds which prevent that person from being
fashionably thin and glamorous.
I see so many of My children self-obsessed, looking about them,
wondering if others are sizing them up in the wrong way. One woman sucks
in her cheeks and restrains her smile for fear people will think her face
is too fat. Her tight belt is cutting off her circulation, but at least
it’s still fastened in the last notch. A man stands stiffly, sucking in
his stomach and hoping no one notices the weight he’s put on since
Thanksgiving. His friend worries about his receding hairline.
My Son did not come to earth to win a beauty pageant or popularity
contest, but to win back souls enslaved to satan. In the book of Isaiah
it is written that there was no beauty that anyone should desire Him. When
He was bloodied and bruised, He hardly looked glorious to the natural eye!
The worth and integrity of the low-income saint are questioned.
Speculations on him or her abound.
Could it be that he harbors secret
sin in his life, and is under God’s judgment? Is he being lazy, or is he
just too stupid to know how to attain to earthly prosperity? So why waste
time on him anyway?
People look askance at the lonely saint who attends church
unaccompanied by friends or family. He just don’t fit into their neat
little scheme of a cozy “family-oriented” fellowship. He doesn’t make a
good advertisement for picture-perfect conservative values.
The hypocrite is often willing to travel to the far ends of the earth
to convert the man of a different culture and color. Gladly would he
immerse himself in the study of a strange tongue and adapt himself to
alien, and often unhealthy living conditions. Sometimes it’s just to
gratify his adventurelust. Yet there is a mission field in church which
is being neglected. When the hypocrite does befriend a lonely saint, it
is more often than not with the ulterior motive of converting that person
to her own mindset on all things important or trivial. The saint is viewed
only as raw material to fashion something else from! And if that
individual persists in being what I made her to be, she is dropped like a
hot potato. I would have My worshippers to lift up their hands and voices
in the sanctuary, not their noses.
Will it take persecution from the world to knit My people together in
love? When will all these petty, childish, unloving attitudes be
forsaken, and the love of My Son be allowed to manifest itself instead?
He associated with harlots, thieves, and tax collectors. Yet the
hypocrite shuns the man in the paisley shirt or the obese woman with
blemishes on her face. Don’t lukewarm saints realize that I consider
impurities of the soul far worse flaws than these?
I have been forced to take too many precious, deeply spiritual saints
home prematurely, simply because no one on earth would love them. They
had no place of rest on earth, and from the depths of their being they
cried out to Me in their unmet need. So I finally took them home to
Paradise, where all things are rooted and grounded in love, and where
there is no hypocrisy.
Many have been driven out and scattered like lost sheep back into the
world because they found no love in their churches. And when they finally
leave, no one truly cares or misses them except Me. Some take refuge in
false cults, which eagerly offer acceptance to souls rejected by cold
Remember the story of Lazarus and the rich man. No one cared much
about this penniless, diseased beggar wasting away with hunger on the
steps of the well-fed, complacent rich man’s house. No one offered him
friendship, and scarcely a scrap of bread. Only dogs were his companions.
I was Lazarus’ only hope. He had no other help, not even from My
people. Only after he was borne by angels to the Paradise of the
Righteous did he find fellowship and comfort among the Redeemed. For even
Father Abraham did receive him in love.
Do not force your brothers and sisters to wait till after death to
enjoy the life they should be participating in right now. Each and every
one of My children is extremely precious in My sight. Do not despise your
brethren whom I have purchased with My own shed blood. Do not exalt
yourselves over one another with haughtiness of mind, or I shall be forced
to allow negative circumstances into your life to abase you.
I tell you solemnly that whatever coldness or cruelty is inflicted
upon your less glamorous brother is inflicted also upon Me. When you try
one another’s patience by looking for ways to vex or criticize, you are
sinning against My Body and My chastisement must swiftly follow, if you
are not careful to judge yourself and repent.
Do not seek to amputate the weaker or less comely members of My Body,
for they are necessary. When you inflict pain or rejection upon My son or
daughter, you touch the apple of My eye and will by no means be held
I warn you sternly but lovingly: I have reached the point where I
will shortly remove My Power, Protection, Presence, and Glory from
churches and individuals who knowingly and deliberately turn a blind eye
and a deaf ear to My commandment to love one another. All of My
commandments have their roots in the kind of love that induced Me to give
up My very Life on the Cross for your sake. If you reject the root, you
reject the entire tree.
You can toil slavishly to gain the praise of men, or even to gain
position or rewards in the world to come, but I will burn up as chaff all
works which were not motivated by My perfect Love. All these vain works
shall be destroyed before My Judgment Seat.
Love is not an option. It is a commandment! And if you refuse My
Love to the least of these My brethren, you might as well quit following
Me right now. You can progress no further in the life of faith until you
are obedient in this area.
The time is extremely short. I am about to appear in the heavens to
gather My jewels to Myself. What you would do to show forth the love of
God, do it now. For after the Rapture takes place, it will be too late to
relive your sojourn on earth and remedy the harm done by your reluctance
to love one another.
A Weighty Matter
Nehemiah 8:10; Matt. 5:28; Luke 16:15; 22:28-30; Romans
14:3-4; II Cor. 4:7; Galatians 4:8-9; I Timothy 4:3-5
When will My people learn that to keep their priorities in line with what
I specifically put My Church into this world to do, and stop wasting My
time trying to get Me to hallow the twisted cultural values of this
world? My House is meant to be a refuge from the oppressions of the
world, not a promoter of them.
When will My people realize that I did not create everyone to look
the same? There are differences in height, bone structure, skin tone, and
musculature, even within the same racial groupings. And_are you
surprised_ I did not design all women to be tall and willowy! Those who
break this cultural beauty edict are not suffering from some demonic
affliction which needs to be cast out by prayer and fasting!
Satan has taken a perfectly sound concept_healthy eating habits_and
overblown it to employ as a weapon against the female sex in particular.
He has convinced worldly women that the heavier they are, the less they’re
worth. Hollywood actresses are setting the trend, defying even death to
make themselves ever thinner; just so their popularity will not die. Good
health is far less important to these vain women than being able to count
their ribs. Although it is natural that women’s forms mature out of
early childhood, society pressures them to defy nature itself and strive
to reverse their own maturation. Satan wants women to look like
Satan’s original lie: Eat from the forbidden tree, and you’ll gain
in prestige. His current lie: DON’T eat, and others will respect you
more. His aim is to distort the image of womanhood in revenge for the
verdict and judgment of the Garden of Eden, which cost HIM status. He
hates to see women robust and feminine-looking, as I intended for them to
be. He knows people can’t focus on more than one issue at a time, so he
drives the worldly woman to worry so much about her "fat" that she never
spares a thought for her eternal fate. The devil keeps her fixated on her
body image and other people’s opinions of it. Above all, he is delighted
with the current attitudes of vainglory and self-obsession which motivate
the trend-setters of this wicked end-time culture. It is bad enough that
the beautiful, the popular and the wealthy have grabbed all the best
things of the earth for themselves and shoved aside the humbler souls,
saying: Make way for us that we may walk over you to get what we want.
But it is not to be so in My church. People might have been renowned for
their outward comeliness in the Old Testament, but in this dispensation I
take pleasure in working through humble vessels full of the Glory of the
Lord, that the excellency may be of Me and not of the flesh.
A strange new doctrine is taking shape in My Church, one I never
ordained through the mouths of prophets or apostles: Girls, get skinny
for Jesus! Its principal tenet: In order for a female saint to qualify
as an overcomer, she must first subdue her flesh; that is, eliminate as
much of it as possible. These misguided women interpret My Word to mean
that the more meat they banish from their bones, the more acceptable they
are to Me. Thus, a woman’s body is seen to be her greatest spiritual foe,
something to vanquish via dieting. No corresponding sacrifice is demanded
of the male believer. I didn’t write one set of rules for women, and
another for men. Where in My Word does it stipulate that men are saved by
grace alone, but My daughters grow closer to Me by starving themselves to
resemble pre-teen girls; or worse, the current trend, which is to look
like a stick topped by an overlarge head?
I set a precedent when I drove out the money-changers and merchants
from the Temple. These carnal men were using My House to carry on with the
commerce of this world. Likewise, the diet industry is plying women of
the Western World with pressure to think they need their products, telling
even normal-weight women that they need to slim down till they’re gaunt.
When a woman finishes a plate of food, it is seen as greed. If she were
ladylike, people think, she would only just nibble at her plate. Eating is
now perceived as an act of guilt and shame, even by My own people who have
been hoodwinked into adopting and sanctifying the devil’s values. While
corrective measures may be necessary when people’s health is at risk, the
quest for an elusive body shape can become an idolatrous obsession!
The last thing a wounded woman needs is to have the hang-ups of this
world thrust upon her again once she enters the church door. If there is
a diet club in church and she is not rail-thin, of course its members will
approach her and invite her to join up. They aren’t trying to insult her
by doing this, but trying to help the newcomer to fit in. They just want
her to "join in the life of the church". This puts the woman in a
quandary. Maybe she feels comfortable with the size she is, and isn’t
particularly keen on starving herself to gain praise from others. And
were she to tell the others she doesn’t perceive herself as too heavy,
some outspoken woman might disagree with her, creating an even stickier
scenario. She knows that if she turns these ladies down, she will be seen
as antisocial, and rejecting their vision of what it means to be a
disciple. Perhaps she even gets so uncomfortable with the situation she
just leaves. After all, worshipping Me at home would not be nearly as
If you must have your diet clubs, don’t bring them into My sanctuary.
Dieting for Jesus is NOT to be made a requirement of women’s
discipleship! Weight loss is NOT to be used as a yardstick to measure
gains in spiritual growth! And thinness is NOT to be made the measure of
My Church is meant to be a place where souls damaged by the lies of
the devil are mended. Many new converts come to Me with a lot of baggage
heaped on them by society. They see themselves as ugly rejects who failed
to make a nice niche for themselves in this perverted world. Ofttimes, a
person will not come to Me at all until he is thoroughly fed up with the
Millions of My children all over the world are have to depend on Me
to keep daily food on their tables. My main concern is to meet the needs
of people who call upon Me in faith, that the Father might receive Glory.
I am busy about the work of saving lost souls and seeking out My lost
sheep. I find it preposterous that multitudes are perishing for want of
natural and spiritual food, while image-obsessed, affluent women are
pleading with Me to help them not to eat the superabundant food they can
afford that same sumptuous cuisine their own husbands so readily indulge
in. And no, I don't excuse carnal husbands for staring lustfully at skinny
girls on the street just because their wives are having a hard time
shedding a few pounds after pregnancy. I count that lustful look as
adultery, regardless of the excuses men make for it. Sadly, even some of
My daughters diet not for health, but to make men lust after them.
I loathe the vanity of women who boast of the many days of fasting
they’ve endured to gain a gaunt figure which supposedly is "a good
testimony for Jesus", and brag about the heavenly reward they expect to
get for their self-denial. This is a pointed dig at their sisters who eat
normally and are not so thin. In My eyes, it is a far greater sin to
indulge in self-exaltation than to polish off a whole box of chocolates in
Next time your big sister comes over for a hug don’t say anything to
make her feel small.
A Ponderous Point
Book of Ruth; Proverbs 31:10-31; Matthew 11:19
Sometimes Scriptures (such as the Song of Solomon) are even used to
impose worldly glamor standards on female saints. Biblical days (and
people) are often unduly romanticized like a Hollywood fantasy. But
typical day-to-day life in ancient Israel was far from glamorous for the
vast majority of people.
Ruth wasn’t worried about taking in excess calories. It was a time of
famine. Her immediate concern was the survival of herself and her
mother-in-law Naomi. She was beginning to get too thin, although the world
now says that is impossible. But her hunger was making her feel ill, and
she needed food to stay alive. She went out to the fields to pick grain;
not to burn off calories from this hard stoop-labor, but to get something
Boaz, the landowner, wasn’t looking for a self-obsessed waif. He
wanted a wife. He married Ruth because of her beauty of character. Only
in today’s high-tech Western world do women feel they have the option of
choosing to starve the muscle and strength from their bodies. In ancient
Israel, only wealthy women felt free to dismiss bodily strength as
unnecessary and spend all their time fretting over their appearance.
Among the populace, it was customary for fathers to arrange
marriages for their sons when they came of age. They generally sought out
young women who appeared healthy and energetic as well as comely. A
prospective father-in-law’s foremost concern was not: “Is she skinny
enough?”, but: “Does she appear healthy enough to live reasonably long?”
Average human life expectancy was considerably shorter than it is today.
He also pondered: “Is her character above reproach? Can she cook well?
Is she a good seamstress? Does she appear robust enough to survive several
childbirths? Does she appear strong enough to rise early and pound grain
into flour to knead and bake into daily bread, draw and carry home great
quantities of water from the well, and perform all other housewifely
duties? If a young girl appeared too frail to qualify, she could not
command a high dowry, and would, most likely, remain unmarried. In that
culture, flower-like fragility was more a liability than an asset.
If anyone insists on using Scripture to shame women out of deriving
proper enjoyment from meals, I would remind you that even eating can be
done to My glory. There are times to forego earthly pleasures, but the
joyful partaking of My provision is to be the norm. I Myself was accused
by ascetic Pharisees of being a winebibber and a glutton, just because I
genuinely enjoyed whatever was set before Me in homes I visited. I
promised My faithful disciples that they would eat and drink at My table
in My Kingdom. I also remember the day a company of returning Jewish
exiles had just received a new revelation of My Law. They were exhorted
to lay aside their sorrows, and rejoice before Me by eating choice foods
and drinking sweet beverages.
I consider obsession with glamor selfish and vain. Many a man
presents these complaints to My Throne of Grace just after his wife has
given birth: that his needs as a normal man aren’t being met, and oh,
please, would I give him the grace to be patient just a little longer.
Such a man is more a baby than his newborn child! He’ll ask Me to
please help his wife hurry and get just as skinny as she was before her
pregnancy, and help her stick rigidly to her strict diet. Rather, he
should thank Me that she survived the arduous birth ordeal, and that she
and the baby are both well.
I say to such selfish men: Stop oppressing my daughters over dieting
and slimness, or you’ll reap what you sow and be bullied yourselves in
some area of your life!
Remember, I died to set My loved ones free. Never use My Holy Name to
whitewash worldly perversions I detest. I am not a patron of the diet and
fashion industries. Furthermore, I don’t pledge allegiance to any
political party, or wrap Myself in the flag of any nation! I don’t
traffic with this world at all. Those things highly esteemed by the world
are an abomination in My sight. Don’t you dare foist the hang-ups of this
present evil age back onto My people.
First Seek Christ’s Beauty
Ecclesiastes 3:11; Proverbs 31:30; Galatians 3:26-29
This new gospel so popular with earthly-minded saints centers around
outward glories, which by their very nature, will fade away. Many are
using Me to obtain things which could augment their status in society or
make their lives more luxurious, rather than seeking after the eternal
riches of My Kingdom.
In Old Testament Tabernacle worship, there was an outer court
ministry as well as an inner court course of service. Both were necessary,
but the Inner Place of My Presence where I meet with you is so much more
glorious. Many are content to linger only on the outer perimeter of
fellowship with Me, deriving whatever transitory benefits they can from
their materialistic faith.
Much more emphasis was placed on external form in the Old Testament
Scriptures, for the outer glory was but a picture of spiritual realities
to come. There were numerous places where a person is described as being
comely in appearance, in conjunction with desirable inner qualities.
David was handsome, as well as courageous and pious. Abigail was
beautiful, as well as sensible and wise. Absalom was the handsomest man in
Israel, but he nursed ugly hatred in his heart toward his own father,
David, and plotted to kill him. He did not possess the beauty of spirit
David manifested toward Me.
Today, many value only exterior attributes in themselves and others.
Thus, New Testament believers are measured by Old Testament standards.
In the New Testament, individual characters move into the background and
give the glory to Christ the Lord. He alone is to receive exaltation
for His inherent virtues. Nothing thrills My Father-heart more than to
see one of My children developing more and more into His likeness. That
should be the goal of every Spirit-filled believer, for there is no higher
I don’t sanction even “Christian” beauty pageants. Such contests are
immodest, self-glorifying vanity. In the Old Testament, there were times
when physical beauty was a prerequisite for fulfilling one’s
purpose in life, as when Esther was selected as Queen of Persia. In My
providence, this put her in a position to help save My people Israel from
total massacre. The wives of the Patriarchs were selected largely on the
basis of natural comeliness. One exception was Leah, the first wife of
Jacob. Jacob looked only on her outward appearance, and would not have
married her, had he not been tricked into doing so. Yet it was she who
was the matriarch of the Royal tribe of Judah, from which I originated. It
was prophesied of Judah that he would be the one praised by his brethren.
It is the beauty of the Rose of Sharon which constitutes the true
comeliness of a believer.
Many a godly, Spirit-anointed woman has been discouraged from active
ministry because she was not deemed attractive enough to represent Me!
But nowhere in the New Testament is an individual saint commended or
rewarded for being outwardly beautiful. The ground in front of the Cross
is level, and all My children are accepted by Me on equal terms. My Son is
seeking out a people who are willing to receive of His beauty and reflect
it daily in their lives. He has comely people, plain people, short and
tall, old and young, rich and poor, great and small, who delight in Him.
He sees no difference, for all are joined to Him in one Spirit. It is
only carnal-minded saints who insist on creating a difference and
rebuilding old barriers which I have torn down.
The Little Toes
Matthew 25:40; I Corinthians 12: 12-26
once lived a woman who slavishly followed whatever fashion fad came
along. One season pointed shoes were in style. She just had to wear them
“like everybody else”, lest she lose face before her friends.
But her feet were a bit too wide to conform to the latest trend.
“Oh, those stupid little toes,” she grumbled. “If only my feet were
dainty and slender like everyone else’s! Well, I know who can remedy this
Her doctor tried in vain to dissuade the adamant woman. After all,
God must have had a good reason for giving her ten toes instead of eight.
If she were to have the unfashionable toes amputated, it would throw the
remaining ones off balance whenever she stood or walked for extended
“I don’t care,” the foolish woman snapped back. “I detest those
ugly toes, and if you aren’t willing to be reasonable, doctor, there’s
plenty of other skilled surgeons in town who would appreciate my
Knowing that she would have it done anyway, he consented to perform
the mutilation. Against his professional ethics he amputated two healthy
members of her body which she had rejected as ugly.
During the woman’s month-long recuperation, she happily ignored the
twinges in her bandaged feet. “One must suffer to be beautiful,” she
sighed. “At last, I’m rid of those ungainly toes! Perhaps I’ll have my
lower ribs removed also, to give myself a nice wasp waist! Won’t I be the
envy of all my friends!”
Once her feet had sufficiently healed, she set off to her favorite
shoe shop, even managing a little spring in her step. “I’ve paid the
price,” she sang to herself, “to make my feet look nice!”
What were those shoes displayed in the broad store window, though?
There were comfortable loafers and moccasins and brogans, but the woman
was undaunted. “Oh, those are only the casual styles,” she murmured.
“The dressiest ones would be on racks inside.”
In vain she anxiously scrutinized each rack, searching for the
coveted narrow-toed pumps she’d seen earlier. Finally a young sales clerk
approached her. “May I help you find something, Ma’am?”
“Oh yes, please,” replied the lady. “Young man, where are the
narrow-toed pumps which were on display just a few weeks ago?”
“Oh, those went on clearance sale two weeks back,” he replied. “To
make way for our latest styles.” Eagerly he gestured toward a huge
display rack full of sensibly designed ladies’ shoes. “Here, Madam, these
appear to be in your size range. Why don’t you have a look, and I’ll
measure you for a proper fitting?”
She felt absolutely sick. Although the shoes were very
smart-looking, every last one of the styles were broad-toed. Now she would
feel so foolish to have the young man measure her mutilated feet.
“They’re the latest fashion,” said the clerk. “If you want to stay in
step, Ma’am, why not purchase a pair or two?”
She hobbled on home, crying for that part of herself she’d rejected.
Looking For Love in All the Wrong Places
Instant friendship is one hallmark of a cult, many say. True. But
coldness is also a sure sign of deadness in a church. People would rather
find instant love than wait all their lives for grudgingly given,
I am present in church services all over the world. But I listen
more intently to the private thoughts of the parishioners than the
somnolent preaching or polished choir performance.
Here is a summary of some poignant thoughts I gleaned from one
I’d better stop singing so joyfully.
Those gloomy mummies are staring at me.
Why won’t anyone sit near me?
Do I have cooties?
Why won’t anyone talk to me?
What makes them act so snooty?
They came to church just to show off
Smug little smiles, noses aloft
I’m tempted to go hang out at the bar
With people whom life has likewise scarred.
How embarrassing, my vast, empty pew
How everyone turns to stare at you.
I’d better sit closer to the rear.
Why do I even waste my gas coming here?
What a stale sermon, what deadpan faces.
They’re hardly sitting in Heavenly places.
This place reminds me of a morgue.
Are they staging this show to honor the Lord?
Pastor’s barred me from church committees
Till I learn to live responsibly.
Those proverbs he picked stung like a bee
Preaching on sloth, he stared holes through me.
Hard on its heels came a sermon on tithing
He hollered real hard and had me a-writhing.
The only time I see him excited
Is when it’s time to feather his nest.
He thinks it’s my fault I’ve been laid off
And life is so unrelentingly rough.
I’m doing my best to be patient, though.
I’m not so sure where else I could go.
I haven't found a single friend.
I’ll never seek Pastor’s prayers again.
He had that “oh, no” look on his face.
That wasn’t a very sincere handshake.
I might as well just head on home.
I feel so stupid, standing here alone
Unneeded, ignored, unable to mix
With everyone else in their close-knit cliques.
They’re snug as a bug in their cozy cocoon
Hoping Christ won’t rapture them soon
Away from their toys to realms above
To ask them how they invested His Love.
Far less risky to worship at home
I’ll flick my remote for my weekly dose.
I’ll get my religion from TV Land
With propped up feet and a beer in my hand.
Who can blame me for thinking it’s better
Than cooling my heels in in a refrigerator?
I just don’t belong in God’s elite corps
I’d rather go elsewhere to serve the Lord.
If Jesus was the same as them,
I wouldn’t want much to do with Him.
It’s been six long months now, and what have I gained
From going to church again and again?
I should be taking this nap in my bed
Wish I had a pillow for my nodding head.
That sermon sounds so very refined
Christ redefined for churchified minds.
I feel like a martyr for enduring this church
I’d better resume my endless search.
Where on earth will my long search cease?
I often feel like I’m presiding over one big kindergarten class, the
way My children interact with one another. People dutifully pray that
I’ll increase the size of their congregation. But when I do, newcomers
find that the church is already divided up into its little play groups and
they’re not really all that welcome.
Matt. 18:21-22; Romans 6:1; Gal. 5:26;
My people are called to be patient with one another in their efforts
to grow into My likeness, and this doesn’t happen overnight but over a
long period of time. Throughout that period you are to pray for My love
and patience as you need it, so the unity and harmony of My Body is
maintained in a spirit of peace. But there are times My people irritate
one another with a callous attitude of indifference, just because I have
asked you to forbear with one another and to forgive each other.
Grace-testing brothers and sisters want to see if they can try someone
else’s patience seventy times seven and still get by with it. On the part
of the rebellious saint there is no effort to grow into My likeness, or to
overcome their human flaws. All that backslider cares about is receiving
My gifts and My favor for his own gratification.
My love is not some ratty throw rug used to disguise a smelly dog’s
mess. My love covers a multitude of sins confessed and turned away from;
faults which are striven against; not evil contrariness which is
perpetrated by grace-testers who abuse the love of My other children over
and over again.
Unless these brats repent I shall have to get out My chastening rod
and discipline them in tough love.
Be On Guard
Psalms 146:3; John 2:24-25; Galatians 5:13-15; James 1:26
Not all commonly accepted maxims are supported by My Word. It is often
said: Trust is an integral part of love. Not so. I said in My Word:
Owe no one anything, except to love one another. Therefore, you owe
it to your brother and sister in Christ to have love and compassion toward
them. But you do not automatically owe them trust! My own son knew when
it was safe to confide in others, or to be around certain individuals. He
did not freely trust all men, not even those who claimed to love Me. Once,
he miraculously escaped the clutches of an angry mob which were intent on
hurling him over a cliff. When he did finally face death, He made no
effort to protect Himself, because He had come into the world for the
express purpose of being sacrificed on the cross for man’s redemption.
It is neither unjust nor unloving to allow Me to caution you
about potentially dangerous attitudes in others.
Love is patient
and kind, but: LOVE DOES NOT LIE TO ITSELF!
I’m not going to mince words. If My Love is totally absent from a
person or his home, then satan is still ruling him, and he is wide open
to demonic control! This applies not only to a hardhearted Christian who
clings to the ways of this world, but the self-righteous ultra-religious
individual who spouts all the right cliches and keeps the customs of the
group he belongs to, while refusing to love his neighbor. Nothing on
earth gives rise to more meanness than loveless religion. The religious
blindness of the Scribes and Pharisees put Me on the Cross!
Suppressing My Nature
Romans 12:2; I John 2:15
A certain woman had a spiteful, sarcastic nature. She was a
professing believer who clung to the ways of the world even while going
through the motions of being a devout churchgoer. She despised those who
were meek and gentle in temperament. She was spiteful and insulting
toward weaker souls and didn't care whose feelings she unjustly hurt. She
questioned the masculinity of any man with a tender-hearted nature. She
drove away faithful friends who tried to bear patiently with her
rudeness. She despised those who were growing in the meekness and
gentleness of my Son, whether men or women.
Such a false believer more highly esteems people who are rude,
aggressive and quick to defend their own rights. Indeed, many carnal
saints use I Corinthians 9:19-22 as an excuse to adapt to the un-Christlike
ways of others, in order to secure the approval of worldly people. Paul
did say: When I am with the Greeks, I become like the Greeks; When I
am with the Gentiles, I become like the Gentiles. Paul’s aim was to
be able to gain the trust of, and converse with with all sorts of people,
in order that he might be able to win some of them to Christ. But he did
NOT suppress the Fruits of the Holy Spirit in his life in order to placate
the sinners around him. He never acted like he was ashamed to be holy.
Beware that you do not unintentionally try to excise from your soul
character traits of My Son which I am establishing in your life! That is
just as tragic as a hospital patient ripping open a gaping chest wound
just because the sutures irritate his flesh a little. Only when you are
in heaven will you fully realize just how hard I had to work to undo the
damage done to the human soul by the Fall of Adam and Eve. Trying to rid
yourself of elements of My perfect nature just because My ways are at odds
with the world is much more dangerous than resisting the ministrations of
an earthly physician. You must never be so eager to “get ahead in the
world” that you kowtow to the ways of ungodly people or backsliders and
begin to find My lovely, guileless nature an embarrassment. The world
despises meekness as weakness, and disparages gentle souls as wimps. That
is nothing new. It was the prevailing philosophy in the days of Noah, just
before the Flood came and erased most of mankind from the earth.
If any believer rejects My true nature and reinvents Christ to suit
himself, he also cuts himself off from access to My Life!
Being Wary is Not Unloving
Numbers Chapter 16; Psalms 146:3; Proverbs 4:23; 22:3;
Matthew 10: 16; 25:34-45; Ephesians 5:15; Hebrews 6:10;
My child, I have given you eyes to see and a heart to understand. I
never expect you to place blind trust in others, although you are
commanded to share My Love even with those people whom it is difficult
If any believer insists on remaining a spiritual toddler, I cannot
force him to grow up. But that one will not enjoy the same privileges as
those who are willing to go on to perfection into the likeness of Christ.
If a person has repeatedly and consistently displayed un-Christlike
behavior toward you, never, ever bare your soul to that one, even when he
makes friendly overtures to try to regain your confidence. Which one of
you, having a new computer or a fine set of crystal, will let a
two-year-old toddler have free access to those things? No one who had
spent a great sum of money on his dearest treasures would stand idly by
and let the child wreck those costly possessions, just because he isn’t
mature enough to know better. There are instances in Scripture where I
took privileges or honors away from people who had abused My good gifts.
Does this mean I was being unloving toward them?
The Kohathites, a division of the tribe of Levi, lost privileges of
drawing near to Me by betraying My trust. They were barred forever from
ministering in My immediate Presence as priests under the Old Covenant.
Why? Because Korah rebelled against Moses in the desert. Against Moses'
explicit orders Korah and his supporters took up censors to offer up
incense to prove they they were the ones I’d chosen for the priesthood.
Such presumptuousness and arrogance. Trying to drum up support among the
populace. Jostling for prestige and position. Bickering and backstabbing.
Putting one another down to appear better than somebody else, instead of
serving one another in love and counting that as the highest privilege!
I feel the pain of this in My Body the Church. What a sin against My love!
So the sons of Korah were relegated to serving their brethren in the
congregation instead of appearing as priests in My immediate Presence.
But under the New Covenant, I make servanthood a position of honor: When
you serve one another you also serve Me, for I am one spirit with My
people. It is the sons of Zadok who consistently remained true to My
revealed will, and it is they who will officiate as Levitical priests
throughout My future Millennial Reign, when literal memorial sacrifices
pointing back to the Cross will be offered up to remind My people of what
I have done for them in redeeming them. I have My own reasons for
reinstituting limited animal sacrifice in a literal Jewish Temple during
that dispensation of time. This in no way detracts from My own final
Sacrifice of Myself, and it does not affect the priesthood of the New
Covenant believer who is a living stone in the Temple of My own Body
indwelt by My Holy Spirit. This unspeakable privilege you receive through
grace and being born again by faith in My Blood, not through being
physically born into a certain bloodline.
I highly value a heart indwelt by My Spirit, one which is centered
upon Me and the things of My Kingdom. It is of infinitely more value than
a new car or computer. I said in My Word that you are to carefully guard
this treasure of yours, and to beware of the influences which come to bear
Truly it is those who are willingly blind who are in greatest peril
of stumbling and falling headlong into a pit of captivity to satan. Those
who will not heed My cautions are in greatest peril.
I command all those who have harbored an unloving attitude toward My
other children to repent now. Not a grudging, superficial apology to that
one you have hurt, but a deep, unfeigned repentance. it must be
directed not only toward the offended one but especially toward Me, the
Head of the Body.
You who are spiritual will be able to tell when repentance is
God-directed and deep. I tell you with great sorrow that some who profess
My Name look back wistfully upon the world and all its perverse
artifices. They bristle, chafe and rankle under My gentle Yoke of Love,
half-wishing they had never committed their lives to Me to begin with!
They wonder if the Door of Salvation is a swinging door which they can
exit and reenter at their convenience. They would far rather be free to
deal with others in a mean, petty, selfish, sarcastic manner, as they did
before they ever heard the Gospel. All they’re hanging onto Me for is the
excellent fire insurance policy I afford them. These souls fail to
realize that being transformed into My spiritual image is the very essence
of My Salvation, and a necessary prerequisite for being fit for heaven!
Their hardness of heart is a grief to Me. They have forgotten their first
Love, and do not consider this: Love for Jesus is as Love for Jesus does!
All those who are truly repentant will rejoice in My grace, and
communicate with others of My unspeakable goodness in working in their
lives. They will even manifest godly humility toward those whom they’ve
alienated in times past, and of whom they’ve received forgiveness.
Hearts knit together in My Love and walking joyfully together in My
Spirit constitute true Christian fellowship. Where My Love is absent, I
also am absent!
Love one another freely, in deed as well as in word. Remember,
though, only I am worthy of unconditional trust. No one has the right to
wipe their dirty feet all over your heart!
Reconciliation in Heaven
Mark 12:18-27; Luke 20:27-38; John 21:18
It’s time for my quarrelling kids to bury the hatchet and learn to
love and forgive one another. Some of you were hurt years ago and your
last memories of the other person are terribly painful. Perhaps you never
again made any type of contact with people who hurt you, and deliberately
neglected to keep track of them over the years. Or you moved far away in
an effort to leave a miserable past behind and make a fresh start in life.
I recall more than one Christian couple whose marriage fell apart,
with a major geographical move being made by one of the spouses to forget
the other person after an acrimonious divorce. But more often than not,
the relocation would do little to ease the pain of betrayal or other
damage done to the relationship, and it would take My supernatural power
to help the innocent spouse begin to heal.
There are many Christian spouses who divorced and remarried other
believers, often leaving heartbroken children and a lot of bitterness in
their wake. How that grieves My heart. But repentance for wrongdoing would
often follow, and I would readily forgive the ones at fault. In such
cases the people concerned would elect to remain in their present
marriages, so as not to make a tragic situation worse.
Many an alienated saint has wondered: “What if the other person
repents and I encounter him (or her) one day again in heaven? Won’t there
be an awkwardness between us?
Definitely no. Even in this imperfect, disorderly world I never let
one of My saints undergo an experience unless I am certain he or she is
ready for it. Learning and personal progress will continue even in
heaven, and even in the absence of the sin nature! I have ordained a time
for all things in My plan for this present life you live, and also for the
life which is to come.
In this world, people come and go at will. That was true of Simon
Peter, who as a young man, would get dressed and go socialize with any
person he pleased, whenever he pleased. As a believer, it is always wise
to spend a brief time seeking My approval before making a journey or going
to visit a particular person. How much more do My saints in heaven
acknowledge My Lordship over their own comings and goings, and great
happiness results. Heaven is a happy Paradise because there, people
always live in complete harmony with their Heavenly Father’s will. So My
saints always enjoy the benefits of My perfect wisdom.
In the case of believers who were at odds with each other on earth,
there is a time of waiting until I decide they are ready to meet again.
But at no time do they harbor evil thoughts or rancor in their hearts, for
that would be sin, and sin does not exist here.
There have been many tearful reunions, but My children always were
glad to see each other again! Forgiveness takes place here, as well as on
earth. As for repentant ex-spouses reconciling in heaven, marriage does
not exist in this blessed realm in the sense you know it on earth. My
saints comprise one big happy family of brothers and sisters in Christ.
Relationships in the Body of Christ reach a level of holy perfection here
in heaven which is unattainable in a sinful world.
Reconciliation is at the supreme theme of My great work of
redemption. When I set out to destroy all the works of satan, I was not
caught off guard by the ugly mess He would make of relationships in future
times. I am the Healer of Hearts, and I do all things perfectly well.
A Time to Draw Apart
Ecclesiastes 3:5; Hosea Chapter 3
So many of you come under feelings of condemnation because you cannot feel
warm and effusive toward everyone in your church, especially toward those
who have repeatedly hurt you and proven themselves untrustworthy as
brethren in Christ. You think that forgiving someone means that you must
immediately take up the relationship where it left off before the offense
That is impossible, especially when the offender is a reckless
personality, immature and willfully inconsiderate of others. When a
building is demolished by an earthquake, it takes much time to rebuild
it. Sometimes the damage extends even to the foundations of the
structure, and it must be relaid with fresh cement. Only I am able to
cement My Body together in Love.
I have seen close Christian friendships break up because I was not
Lord of that friendship, and there were major blockages to the flow of My
Love. A sharp-tongued, manipulative type would subtly bully his or her
gentle-natured friend until the damage was so extensive the abuse could no
longer be tolerated. They would then part company, often acrimoniously.
If both parties continued going to the same church, the air around them
would be supercharged with tension. The two hostile saints could not
partake together at the Communion Table with a clear conscience.
Such a scenario feels much like a marital split. This is also true
when a believer gives up trying to fit into the life of a particular
church and severs ties with it for good because he feels like an unloved,
unneeded appendage. He feels like he’s divorced an entire fellowship!
Remember the example of Hosea the Prophet, who extended supernatural
forgiveness toward his adulterous wife Gomer. Her track record was one
of repeated betrayal toward her husband. Hosea had solid grounds for
divorce. But part of my plan for his life was that he demonstrate the
kind of forgiveness I repeatedly showed toward Idolatrous Israel.
But even in showing forgiveness, Hosea exercised wisdom. He could
not immediately be just as close to Gomer as he’d been before her sin.
Before their relationship could be restored to its former intimacy, a new
foundation of trust had to be built between them. Hosea needed space and
time to heal inside. They were no longer estranged, but a necessary
distance was kept between them “for many days” before they became close
When someone deliberately sins against a fellow believer, fellowship
between them is broken. I must impart a fresh supply of love to the heart
of the offended one, or the damage done to their relationship will be
permanent. My Agape Love must be restored immediately. The trust and warm
feelings happen later.
Living in Harmony
Amos 3:3; II Cor. 6:14-18; Eph. 5:7, 11; I Tim. 5:22; II
I understand the pressure so many of My poorer children are under,
with the skyrocketing price of housing, how it eats up their meager
paychecks until they feel driven to find a solution...any solution.
I see the chaos caused when some Christian young person ends up
sharing a house with roommates who don’t know Me as Lord. The worst
case scenario is when unconverted roommates engage in acts of immorality
under the same roof as the believer, so that he feels like he’s in a
no-win situation. His roommates exchange foul jokes, get drunk and spread
their evil influence in the kitchen and living room. The atmosphere is so
tainted with spirits of lust and blasphemy that such a house cannot
receive My blessing. Even when the Christian shuts his or her own
bedroom door to pray, that one draws the ostracism and criticism of the
others for setting himself apart as different, and for being antisocial.
The same principle applies to putting up people who give every
evidence of being hostile toward My standards of basic decency. If they
won’t respect your right as a Christian host to protect the atmosphere of
your home, keep them out. Every dog, however cute and cuddly, brings his
fleas in with him. Unrepentant sinners would only contaminate your
consecrated home with demonic influences which might be hard to remedy and
cast out after your guests leave. You need to be wise, especially if
you have a family to consider. You would not want your child to mimic the
words and ways of a foul-mouthed drunk. Hospitality toward the unholy is
one sticky type of situation where satan can make darkness appear as
light. Always seek My approval before making a tricky decision of any
kind. Once you are sure of it, My guidance must always be final. Even if
outsiders think you are being uncharitable in a decision, remember, I
alone am Lord.
If you must share living space with others because of lean finances,
first pray about it and ask Me to lead you to My perfect solution before
you rush into a disastrous situation. I would bring together young
Christian men to live together to edify and encourage one another in the
faith, as well as to share living costs. I would also bring my daughters
together for the same purpose, so that after they leave their parents’
home they might form friendships and lend support to each other to give
one another strength to go out and face an unedifying working environment
I send you out into the world to minister My Word and My Life, but I
would not have you to bring the world and its wickedness into the peaceful
sanctuary of your home.
Justified by Jesus' Blood, Not by Legalism
Deut. 14:26; Judges 9:13; Psalms 104:15; Jeremiah 35:1-10,
18-19; Amos 9:13-14; Matt. 26:29; Luke 7:34-35; John 2:1-11; Romans 14:
3,13-23; I Corinthians 8:8-13; 10:23-33; Ephesians 2:8-9; I Thes. 5:22; I
Tim. 4:3-5; 5:23; Hebrews 4:16; and 10:19
Oh, how wearisome to My people, all the man-made legalism they
encounter in church. Things like clothesline Christianity. One group puts
you down if you don’t appear prosperous; another teaches you can earn My
favor by keeping an austere set of rules: no jewelry or make-up, no
haircuts for women. Some people have even been warned that taking an
occasional glass of wine is a one-way ticket to hell. Legalists are
always tongue-tied when they’re reminded that Jesus’ first miracle was to
turn water into wine, and indeed wine was considered an essential part of
a Jewish wedding. Christ also promised His disciples that He would one day
drink of the fruit of the vine with them again in His Kingdom. I detest
excess which leads to drunkenness, but I would have every believer to grow
mature enough to be led by Me as to where exactly to set his or her own
boundaries in earthly matters. An adolescent or adult cannot depend on his
parents to dictate all his actions. A pastor should not seek to control
every aspect of his people’s lives, but should guide them in the
principles of godly wisdom. There are those whom I have commanded to
totally abstain from strong beverages of every sort, for these weak souls
would be overpowered by even a sip of wine.
To those who enforce a blanket prohibition of all wine consumption
upon My congregation because Paul was willing to give it up if it caused
offense, remember this: Paul also was willing to give up meat, which in
the context of that ancient society was suspect because of possible
contamination by idols. Does this mean that all My children should be
vegetarians as well? Remember also Paul’s advice to Timothy to use wine as
a tonic for his stomach ailments. Among the many blessings I promised
ancient Israel was a bountiful vintage of wine grapes, along with a bumper
crop of wheat for bread-making.
Some justify imposing a total ban on congregational wine-drinking by
citing the example set by the Rechabites. These people were commanded by
Jonadab, son of Rechab, never to drink wine or even to plant vineyards.
This would preclude them even from eating table grapes. They were also
commanded not to possess any real estate in the land, nor to sow seed or
build houses. They were to remain tent-dwelling nomads. Jonadab's
descendants set a godly example of obedience to the wise counsel of their
ancestor. In this way they did not come under bondage to the perils of
covetousness and making the acquisition of possessions their goal in
life. In a world where so few honored their parents in a spirit of
obedience, Jeremiah the prophet spoke My words of approval upon them and
promised them great blessing for their obedience. But if you claim to be
followers of Jonadab, you must be consistent, My people. Don't plant
farmland. Don't even own the farmland. Don't build yourself a house.
Dwell in a tent instead. Don't even eat grapes, because then you would be
eating a product Jonadab forbade His own children to plant, and it would
mean someone else had to "sin" by planting the source of the grapes you
ate, the forbidden vineyard. Always exercise godly wisdom and sanctified
common sense in how you apply My Word.
Always walk in the higher law of My Love and be guided by My Spirit
of Love. Do nothing to provoke another believer who honestly believes the
thing you enjoy is sin. I have called you to liberty and will withhold no
legitimate enjoyment from you, but remember how highly I esteem your
brother’s soul. If he joins you in partaking of something he THINKS is
sinful, to him it IS sinful! These are perilous times, beloved, and
appearing drunk can damage your testimony. Hard liquor in particular has
acquired a bad reputation as devil’s brew, since much crime, family
breakup and domestic violence has sprung from its consumption. The problem
of discernment arises when weak souls are just as offended by mild wines
and beer as strong whiskey. It would be far better to just have soft
drinks at a party than to stir up needless contention by boasting that
you have no qualms about indulging in beer or wine. My Spirit imparts
such peace and joy to you, that you do not really need the transitory
euphoria provided by alcoholic beverages.
Be sensitive to the needs of others. Remember to avoid all apearance
of evil. Avoid slippery traps of the enemy. What kind of testimony is it
when a Christian believer dresses seductively, then goes to a bar to join
cursing, swearing sinners in their rowdy behavior? Is that edifying to the
Christ within you? Keep in mind that it’s your responsibility to set a
godly example for the young people of your fellowship. You will be held
accountable for how diligent you were to make personal decisions in the
light of Christ’s Love.
What really grieves Me is that so many think that their abstinence
from harmless amusements like ball games or sports, or from certain
adornments, foods and mild beverages makes it more likely that they will
beat you to the gates of heaven. That is robbing Me of My Glory. It is
only through the Blood of the Lamb sprinkled on the Mercy Seat in heaven
that anyone can freely approach My Presence in Prayer. It is CHRIST Who
makes you acceptable to Me, not legalistic dietary habits or plain dress.
Put on Christ
Galatians 2:20; Ephesians 4:22-24; Philippians 1:21
How natural for people of the world to want to put on masks to camouflage
the inadequacies and imperfections they behold in themselves. And indeed,
they are quite adept at doing this. In the world, it is often the
cleverest game-player who is most highly esteemed, the one who puts on the
best show to impress others, and is most skilled in the art of
The world is all caught up in staging productions, in living out real
life soap operas. People desperately want to project themselves as
winners who always come out on top; as glamorous heroes who felled the
giant with one good shot and escaped without ruffling a hair. Marred by
the Fall of Adam, the carnal mind is forever looking for ways to patch
up that gnawing sense of inadequacy caused by the Fall. Above all things,
a self-obsessed individual wants to persuade others that he is worthy of
esteem and love.
This should not be the mindset of the believer. At salvation, a
person faces the fact that he, by nature IS depraved and undone. He
acknowledges that My love is bestowed by grace alone, not because of any
sensational attributes or achievements he can boast of. There is only one
thing he can do about his inadequacy: allow Me to remove the dirty rags
of his old nature, and clothe him in Christ, his new Life.
Bridle Your Tongue
Matthew 12:34-37; James 3: 1-12
No other member of the body is potentially more lethal than the
tongue. I have seen saints who were only too eager to “share a word from
the Lord” with a brother or sister whom they judged to be deficient in one
or more areas of their lives. Invariably such a smug attitude only serves
to finely hone a tongue in the art of cutting another down to size.
I detest the way some believers coyly smile even as they say such
things as: “Are you SURE that’s all your husband’s been up to?” Or:
“Don’t you think there’s a DEEPER reason you’ve had all this trouble in
your life? Listen, brother, I’m saying this out of love. If God healed
you or bailed you out of this mess, you would only get all puffed up with
pride like Paul was tempted to be, so God is really doing you a favor by
leaving you sick and poor.”
Such people would be elated to find that their suspicions had been
well-founded, for they consider you beneath them spiritually and socially
and worthy only of a sound thrashing from Me. But those hypocrites are
the ones who should fear, lest My humbling hand fall upon them to correct
their bad attitudes!
A carelessly spoken word clings to the soul like burning napalm. Even
if an apology is offered, the offense is remembered. Only through My
miraculous grace is true forgiveness possible, and the hurt taken away.
Unless prayer is offered for My miraculous power to weed out the bad seen
sown in that person’s life, he might inadvertently turn around and
abuse others in the same way, just passing the strife on in a ripple
effect which can quickly rage out of control like a forest fire.
Mark 9:50; John 12:32; and 13:34-35
It breaks My Father-Heart to receive daily reports from My angels
about the sniping and bickering and contention going on among the saints.
When one Christian meets another Christian for the first time, He or she
should be able to discern in the Spirit that the other is walking in
harmony with Me, and to accept him on that basis. In a
prosperity-oriented congregation, critical eyes rake up and down the other
form, wondering just how much that one spent on his apparel, and thus, how
wealthy he is. Or, a legalistic Christian will scan the other person to
make sure he is free of expensive jewelry or cosmetics. Even if the other
person passes that initial test by looking plain enough, there are other
hurdles she must clear before she earns acceptance. Only if the new
arrival seems to conform sufficiently to the exacting standards of the
group will tentative friendliness be shown.
People find it great fun to keep each other ever on edge, to play the
game of parry and thrust, to keep each other walking on a tightrope and
sitting on eggs. If the pastor is a reserved, serious type, he “lacks
charisma”. How unlike Jesus, critics think, for Jesus was popular and
outgoing. If the pastor laughs too loudly or too often, he is “being
carnal”. After all, nowhere in the Bible does it say that Jesus ever
laughed or even cracked a smile If the pastor’s wife wears bright
clothing, she is “too worldly”. If she looks too plain, she “isn’t a good
complement to his ministry”.
There always seem to be far more excuses NOT to accept your brother
and sister in Christ than reasons to love them unconditionally. Some
souls have no one they can confide in about the pressing issues of life
except Me. I, the Head, must buoy up these dear ones with supernatural
strength to bear up under rejection and other pressures, lest they faint
in the day of adversity, for no one else cares much about them.
My original intent was to so fill My people with My love that there
would be a mighty overflow and lost sinners would be drawn to Me,
attracted by My goodness. But My sweet graces are at odds with the
cultural norms of this sinful world. The benefits of My Kingdom have been
so suppressed that I am now hard-pressed to keep the sheep I already have
from going back to the world and perishing with it.
The Apostle of Love
I Corinthians 13:1; I John 5
All of My original Apostles (except Judas) were found faithful at the end
of their earthly sojourn, and, after their decease, received a glorious
welcome into My Heavenly City. They had all left behind an enduring
testimony. Your own conversion was made possible because of the
fruitfulness of these first followers of Christ, and the written record
they left behind.
The apostle John, especially, caught the vision of the centrality of
My Love to all things pertaining to the Christian life. His disciples
often asked him: “Brother John, what are you going to minister on today?”
His reply was invariably: “The Love of God in Christ Jesus.”
When visiting his congregations, he would often ask them: “Little
children, are you still walking in His love?”
At that moment, they would be compelled to examine their own hearts
to see if it were so. They would feel greatly ashamed if they could not
reply “Yes, Brother John.” And it would do no good to try to mislead this
aged saint who had walked so closely with his Lord. He was so full of My
Spirit that nobody could fool him.
He would do all in his power to recover My straying sheep. If his
under-shepherds were lax in this area, he would gently reprove them; for
he remembered what Jesus had said about seeking and saving that sheep
which was lost.
The day came when John had to go off on a missionary journey. There
was a young convert in the Church of Ephesus whom John had entrusted to
the oversight of a friend of his. But it wasn’t long before the lad fell
in with a bad bunch. Rather than influencing them for good, the new
convert was enticed to renounce his new faith and join his roguish pals
in their life of brigandry.
After a lengthy absence, John returned to check on the spiritual
progress of the young man. “How is the soul whom the Lord has entrusted
to your oversight?” John asked his under-shepherd.
“He has gone away from us,” replied his friend sheepishly. “Trouble
not yourself over him, Master. He is hopeless anyway. I can no longer be
burdened with him. I have more profitable things to do for the Lord.”
John reminded him that the Chief Shepherd of souls values His one
wandering sheep so much that He leaves all the faithful ones and seeks him
John backed up his words with action. He personally undertook an
arduous search for this man. On his journey, he was waylaid on the road by
a gang of highwaymen, who threatened to kill him if he did not hand over
his valuables. John recognized the leader as the man who had run away from
his flock. “Why would you harm your own aged father?” he asked. “I have
come to recover your soul from death.”
The heart of the brigand was moved by the Spirit of Grace, for no one
is able to repent unless My Holy Spirit imparts that ability to him. The
man knelt, weeping, at the feet of the apostle. John took him back home.
He fasted and prayed with the penitent, admonishing him with tears, until
peace came back to the young man’s soul and the defilement of his former
life was washed away. There are times when spiritual warfare must be
waged to expel spirits of darkness which have crept into the life of a
believer. They can be very stubborn about releasing their grip once
they’ve secured a foothold.
Because John was willing to go the extra mile to help a fallen brother
instead of writing him off as hopeless, this young man eventually became a
bishop in the Church. There is great power in My love.
Many believers of that time thought that John was too preoccupied
with the subject of “love”. But John knew by divine revelation that love
is the very essence of My nature, and if this vital truth is ignored, the
proclamation of the Gospel loses its power. Love is the very mortar which
holds together My Building of Living Stones, the Church. John could
foresee that the effectiveness of My Church would wane if that most
central of truths was ignored. No other motivation for serving Me is
Rekindling Dying Coals
Isaiah 32:15; 42:3; Matt.3:11
It’s easy to write off a backslider as hopeless and say I might as
well not bother with him anymore. But consider a pile of dead-looking
coals. They look white and inactive, but if they are stirred and blown
upon, it’s just possible they could be rekindled.
Many non-religious people who were saved as children have been
revived back to an intimate knowledge of Christ when the refreshing breath
of My Spirit of Life blew upon them.
I Direct Your Comings and Goings
Psalms 32:8; Proverbs 3:5-6; John 4:7-30
Jesus’ disciples were surprised to find Him talking to a Samaritan
woman when they returned from town with a supply of provisions. In that
day, no respectable Jewish male would dare chat with a woman in public,
especially a heathen one. But Jesus knew His encounter with her was
divinely appointed. It was an opportunity to reap a rich harvest field
which just happened to be off the beaten track.
There are times when your plans for the day must give place to to My
own, but I always know best.
I speak to that dear one who made an effort to get his or her pastor
to take a personal interest in their deep trials, yet drew an aloof
response and walked away disillusioned.
When he casually asked you: “How are you?”, he was taken aback by
your detailed, truthful reply. You let him know in your own way that you
were weary of burdens or cares which you were ill-equipped to bear, and
longed for the peace of heaven.
He prided himself on being an excellent expositor of My Word. It
warmed his heart to be able to boast that his pews were populous, or his
folding chairs filled up. But it reached the point where he began to
retreat from you whenever you walked up to greet him after the service.
All you wanted to do was go tell him personally what his message meant to
you. You had somehow accepted that he had no time to get to know you or
empathize with you as an individual. After all, it’s just too much work
to take an in-depth interest in one individual or his family, even if the
congregation is small . It’s so time-inefficient to do for one what can be
done en masse from the pulpit.
Just because you were lonely and cast adrift in your troubles, and
weren’t strong enough to totally conceal the fact, he was leery of you.
He didn’t have to say one word as he gave you that look. He thought you
were quite odd for expecting him to play the part of the Good Shepherd.
Know what I think? It was HIS deficiency, not yours!
The Arm of Flesh Fails
Deuteronomy 33:27a; Psalms 146:3; Proverbs 25:19; Jeremiah
17:5-8; John 14:27
You plead with Me to be patient with you, and to understand the
reasons behind your difficulties.
Yet many of you fall into the snare of believing the worst about your
brethren who have been wounded in this present warfare against satan. If
a perplexing problem besets your brother’s life, judgmental believers
think it must be My chastening Hand heavily smiting him for some glaring
fault or some secret imperfection. The self-righteous fancy themselves to
be the favored few who are dwelling securely in Beulah Land, warmed by the
balmy sun of prosperity.
Woe be unto those who indiscriminately confide their troubles to
seemingly religious folk, without first consulting Me about it. If the
situation is superficial, or not outside the scope of human wisdom, then
human consolation might come to the troubled one.
But when the trouble endured seemingly has no precedent,
misunderstandings arise. In these last days, satan is busy hurling heavy
artillery against certain ones whom he especially hates. There are
situations in individual lives which are freak innovations of the devil’s
age-old tactics. This phenomena is similar to the way new strains of
disease pathogens mutate from older ones in order to resist antibiotics.
A nasty, knotty problem can defy established wisdom because
darkness often masquerades as light, and it can be seem as uncharitable to
resist certain evil situations in life. Life does not always fall into
predictable, orderly patterns, and this is not always the fault of the
troubled one. Real life can get complex and messy. The devil knows My
redeemed ones are often well-trained in handling run-of-the-mill, commonly
faced problems. But there are situations endured which would have
confounded the wise King Solomon himself.
If a perplexed saint confides his trouble to another believer who
has not sought Me for an anointing of wisdom, further hurts may be
inflicted upon that tormented soul. He or she is suspected of being un-Christlike
in their response to the trial. Or, he is accused of being selfish or
slothful when just the opposite is true.
Other times little rapport exists between the tried person and the
ministry of his church.The problem might be so sordid in its nature, so
perverted and offensive to sanctified ears that the counsellor recoils in
horror and refuses to listen anymore. The tranquil waters of this placid
pool must never be disturbed, for his mind is on the mountaintop, far
removed from the brutal warfare being waged in the valley below.
So with partial hearing and scanty comprehension comes contempt and
hasty judgment: You’re getting just what you deserve, the
counselee sees in the barbed smile of his cold counsellor, who dispenses a
little acerbic advice and dismisses his listener with a polished “prayer”,
before returning to the serene sanctuary of his own cozy home.
Let not such a complacent counselor delude himself into thinking that
he would fare better in such a trial, or that the day of testing will
never darken his own life. No other army on earth is less circumspect or
knowledgeable of their enemy’s tactics than My own.
Let those who are deeply troubled lean upon Me. Yes, rest upon My
everlasting Arms. They will never collapse beneath you; for I, in My
loving faithfulness, will never fail you nor forsake you.
Tit for Tat
Oh, how it can smart when a well-meaning saint upbraids you for a
fault in your life. So many saints fear that I am slacking off in my duty
as a divine disciplinarian. So they gladly assume the role themselves ,
thinking they are helping Me out and I would be lost without their
expertise in that area. They are loose canons in the congregation of the
So many young saints feel they are continually held under a
microscope, and every facet of their life is under the scrutiny of more
seasoned saints. If they laugh too much, they’re starting to skate on
thin ice, so they are exhorted to sobriety. If they share a funny
anecdote, they are backsliding, even if the story is inoffensive. If they
take offense at insults, they need to be crucified, and who better to do
it than the older saint who has been “in the way” for much longer than
I have seen many saints, both old and young, begin to sour on the
Christian life, simply because they feel they continually have to defend
themselves from unwarranted criticism. Not from Me, but from My
self-appointed representatives. It really does grieve Me when the tables
are turned, and the younger saint stays on the lookout for any sign that
his elder critic’s halo is tarnishing. If a swear word escapes the lips
of the self-righteous individual, or problems arise within his marriage,
the other person feels like he’s evened the score. He’s elated because
now he doesn’t feel so sinful anymore.
It’s bad enough the world is full of sick people games, and sinners
are always preying on each other. Must My people also prey on one
another, rather than pray for each other?
Be Ye Merciful
Matthew 5:7, and 18:33; I Peter 3:8
So many of My children plead, “O Lord, please see me only through the
Blood of Jesus. Look not upon my fleshly faults, but let them be hidden
from Your sight through the imputed righteousness of Christ Jesus. Please
see your Son as You look upon me.”
Truly I accept My people as righteous because of the unspeakably
wonderful atonement of My own precious Son. Because of His perfectly
sinless and obedient life, which was offered up for your salvation, I can
accept all those who believe on Him as righteous and fit to enter My very
Presence in prayer. He is the Bread of Life, and all who partake of Him
shall live forever. My little children, Christ is your mediator. He ever
lives to make intercession for you before My Throne in heaven. He is your
covering. Rejoice because of what He has done for you, and because of
this great Love of Mine which He shall never cease to manifest to you.
Sadly, there are many who eagerly grasp My tender mercy and
lovingkindness and yet are stingy in the way they dispense these things to
others, even their own brothers and sisters in Christ. These
double-minded backsliders refuse to see Christ in the faces seated across
the aisle from them. In fact, this thought often crosses their mind:
What does Jesus see in THAT person anyway? When these souls
are assailed by the fiery darts of the devil, the hypocrite shows no
kindness or compassion toward them. Rather, there is more than a hint of
blame toward the besieged saint, as though that dear one had chosen
to be a sitting duck for satan and deliberately placed his own soul in
harm’s way! The real truth is this: The devil would have far fewer
opportunities to make mincemeat out of a vulnerable soul if My people were
united in love and purpose, like a good solid family should be. Even the
animal kingdom shows more sense, the way members of herds stand shoulder
to shoulder to shield their vulnerable members, particularly their young,
from attack by predators.
“Greet one another with a holy kiss,” I said in My Word. Yet some
think they are too good to bestow a wisp of a smile, though it costs them
nothing. And these stony hearts take it upon themselves to finish off
those wounded in the fray, giving them an unholy kick, rather than a holy
kiss. They are like vultures, the way they make a meal out of someone who
has lost his spiritual footing and fallen into a pit. Gossip disguised as
“prayer requests” spreads like wildfire, and “spiritual giants” serve up a
heaping helping of their self-ordained “Ministry of Rebuke” to one whose
heart is already crushed with humiliation.
The tongue has the power to bless and minister words of healing.
Yet many employ it as a sharp sword to complete the devil’s objective to
kill and destroy.
Let all those who have fallen into these snares make a full
repentance before Me, for when you wound a member of My Body, you also
There was a youth whose father frequently administered chastisement
in the form of vigorous whippings and strident rebukes. One day, after a
particularly bad beating, the lad fled his home for good, preferring to
take his chances out in the cold, cruel world.
There are many church refugees who simply couldn’t take the emotional
and spiritual abuse anymore, and went elsewhere to search for their Good
The Good Samaritan
Luke 10: 29-37; James 2:14:17
When the Good Samaritan ministered to the Jew who had been waylaid by
highwaymen, he didn’t rub salt in his wounds to make them hurt even more.
He applied wine and oil to them. Both of these things symbolize restoring
influences of the Holy Spirit. The wine served as a disinfectant,
counteracting further destructive influences, even as His ministry
restrains the destructive activity of satan. The oil soothed the man’s
damaged tissues; the Holy Spirit is indeed the Great Comforter. My
wounded saints need comfort when they have been trounced by the devil, not
The Good Samaritan did not pause to ask the man lying wounded on the
road if if he’d started the fight and brought the injuries on himself.
He did not take a gun and finish the job for the ones who’d beaten him up.
I have many warriors in My army who have fought valiantly against the
devil, yet have fallen wounded and are bleeding inside. When more
“spiritual” people shrink away from them, I must directly minister to them
Myself. I bestow upon these dear saints a special sense of My Presence,
and pour in the Wine and Oil of the Spirit, to heal wounds no other
person is qualified to treat.
God’s Warning to Loveless Landlords
Behold, saith the Lord, the day is at hand when I shall bring to
remembrance all the cruelty of loveless landlords who turned individuals
and families out in the cold and the rain, and took no pity on them in
their day of humiliation and ruin. When these pompous sinners appeal to
me to cover them in My Blood and shelter them from the firestorm of
judgment to come I will turn a deaf ear to them just as they turned a deaf
ear to their neighbor in need and showed no pity.
Those who ground the faces of the poor in the dirt because they could
not afford the high price of existing in their overpriced property will
hear from Me: “You are weighed in the balance and found wanting. You
have not sufficient credits laid up in heaven to enter into My Kingdom.
Depart from Me, ye cursed, into everlasting darkness prepared for the
devil and his angels.”
Many religious landlords will, in desperation, appeal with the
then-vain protestation: “Lord, did you not pay the price for every man’s
salvation? Is not Your own righteousness sufficient for my salvation? Why,
then, do you find me weighed in the balance and found wanting, and thus
unworthy to enter into Your Kingdom? Why are You casting me out?”
It is then I shall say: “Because you refused to see My face in the
faces of the poor you despised and threw out as rubbish. You heard the
Gospel in your lifetime, sinner. You knew the truth, but you went to
church only to keep up a respectable front before the community. Yet you
were ashamed to own Me as Lord before all the men of eminence you wished
to impress. You never acknowledged Me as Lord in the business of
day-to-day living. You withheld mercy from My poor brethren during your
vain lifetime, so now mercy is being withheld from you. Go away. You
refused to store up the riches that endure by showing mercy to those in
need, so you are much to poor to inhabit these mansions of light with the
company of the redeemed.”
If I shall deal harshly with unmerciful religious hypocrites who
oppressed the poor, why should the rest of the wicked expect any mercy
from Me when the Day of My Wrath consumes the earth?
Don’t Be A “Job’s Comforter"
Job 16:1-2; Habakkuk 3:17-18; Romans 12:15; I Corinthians
God helps those who help themselves. Where is this time-worn
maxim found in My Word? The self-satisfied saint says to the brother
trapped in miserable circumstances: “Serves you right. If only you
weren’t so slothful, you could prosper just like me.” Or, “You’re
holding back something (usually he means money!) from the Lord, and He
can’t AFFORD to prosper you!”
I can do whatever I please. Job’s so-called friends also tried to
proscribe the limits within I was permitted to bless My children, or keep
them from adversity. IF you keep all the rules, they told this afflicted
saint, God MUST let all your circumstances be favorable ones. “Look at
US”, they really meant. “WE must be pleasing in God’s sight. WE’RE well,
WE’RE happy. WE aren’t destitute, sitting in a heap of ashes and moaning
in pain. But God singled YOU out to put all these nasty things on. Come
on now, Job. ‘Fess up! What did YOU do to make God so mad He’d want to
punish YOU like this? Tell us the whole sordid story of YOUR sins!”
Job’s smug accusers were utterly ignorant of the true nature of My
Holiness. For as I said in MY Word, there is not one person on earth who
can stand before Me as righteous on his own merits. Only through faith in
the Blessed Redeemer can My perfect righteousness be imputed to those who
love Me. And, all have sinned and come short of My glory. Furthermore, My
Word says: Rejoice with those who rejoice, and weep with those who
weep. Job’s friends sought only to humiliate and outwit this poor
man. They were expert at the game of long-winded debate, but they did not
possess the tender-hearted compassion of My Son. To them, material
prosperity and health were the ONLY sure signs of My approval and favor.
They thought that only wickedness lay in Job’s heart, rather than
steadfast faith in his Redeemer. And they ignored the fact that the
wicked, who concern themselves ONLY with their own comfort and ease, often
prosper materially in this present world.
Fair Weather Faith
Habakkuk 3:17-19; II Corinthians 6:10
My, how the "faith" teachers love to rake poor Job over the coals.
But it takes much stronger faith to trust Me in adversity than in material
What if a promoter of the Prosperity Gospel were to suddenly lose all
the trappings of a "King’s Kid"? What if he became a victim of "corporate
downsizing", got knocked clean off the corporate ladder, and ended up
working at a far humbler job? Chances are, he’d be bounced back down the
"social ladder" as well, for carnal people confine themselves to their
own cliques. What if the bank repossessed his car because he could no
longer keep up the payments, and his peer-pressured children were ashamed
to be seen riding in an old clunker he replaced his fancy car with? What
if he had to spend months seeking a new job, and his children were ashamed
Could he still praise Me even if the bank foreclosed on his fine home, and
he had to pay rent on a run-down dump instead? What if he were had to cut
up his credit cards and he could no longer afford to treat his friends to
dinner at fine restaurants? Would his affluent friends quickly tire of
treating him? What if he even lost his own health? Could he weather such
severe storms, especially if they came in rapid-fire succession, like
Job’s trials struck?
Most likely not. Those who have been wrongly taught to set their
affections on earthly things would crumble and feel that they had somehow
failed Me; for according to Prosperity Theology, the perks of the
Christian life are the fruit of faith. The poor guy’s fellow church
members would, most likely, shy away from him so as not to be contaminated
by his "negative confession".
Job suffered trials every bit as traumatic as these. Yet in spite of
all his setbacks, he never turned his back on Me or renounced his own
faith. Could his smug, self-righteous critics have retained their trust
in Me if tried to the same degree? What do YOU think?
Lord, Help Me
Psalms 34:4-7, 15, and 17; Hebrews 4:16
Sometimes your sorrows are so overwhelming, you fear you’ll lose the
peace I’ve imparted to you. Satan is quick to seize upon such stressful
moments and use them to his dark advantage. He’ll whisper the vilest lies
in your ear, using all his cunning to undermine your faith in My
faithfulness and love. From that point it’s easy to slide into a deep
vortex of self-pity, lamenting that you don’t have this or that prayer
answered, that no one cares about you, even asking yourself why I ever
created you in the first place. All it takes sometimes is a small cruelty
or unkind word from another person to trigger off these seismic reactions
which shatter your soul. All devastating earthquakes begin with mild
Recognize the potential for one trial giving rise to another, deeper
hurt, through the lies of the devil. The moment some irritation happens
or someone says or does something to get you all upset; the moment you are
tempted to engage in the slightest sin, call upon Me for help in time of
Many make the mistake of thinking: I’m big enough to handle this
hurt or this temptation. I’m mature enough to rise above this petty
aggravation. I’m too busy to compose a prayer now, anyway. That’s the
problem. People feel better about themselves when their prayers are
eloquent and “worth offering up.” But your goal should not be to merit a
higher opinion of yourself by being eloquent in My Presence. You
are facing a crisis which has the potential to blow up into a much bigger
battle, one that you alone are unable to fight. You must come humbly to
Me for help that I alone can give. All I ask is that you live continually
in the awareness that you have access to Me through the High Priestly
ministry of My sinless Son, your Redeemer the Lord Jesus Christ. This
faith alone is sufficient to impart the proper humility to you.
I am not at all impressed by the cleverly contrived public
invocations of pompous religious folk. Oftentimes, these utterances are
not true prayers at all, but mere displays of fleshly pride. I do not
even listen to such dribble. All I want is for you to pour out your heart
to me. If you are too stressed to add anything else to your petition,
just come to Me through Christ and say: “ Lord, help me.”
I am not confined to time, for I am a Being of eternity. I will
already have dispatched angels to your aid even before your prayer is
formed in your heart! If I waited till you were fully aware of the
looming crisis, much damage would already have been done by the enemy.
If you feel you are in danger of any kind, whether from natural
perils, or demonic attacks oppressing your soul or circumstances, cry out
to Me and say: “Lord, help Me.” You will feel the oppression leave your
soul, like a great weight being lifted from it. The joy and peace of
faith will replace the awful fear and despondency the devil had tried to
chain you to. Moreover, I will destroy the seeds of destruction sown into
the field of your life by the enemy, and restore all he has stolen from
you. It takes the power of My Spirit to fight off these attacks of satan.
And mighty angels, My unseen secret service agents, are there to rescue
you, and to drive off the forces of darkness.
You incur much needless suffering when you fail to call upon Me in
time of distress.
Unless the Lord Builds the House
A certain woman brought together eggs, flour, sugar, baking powder,
milk and salt on a table. Being a novice cook she stared down at them and
said, “That’s all I can do. I can’t go any further.”
Her cooking teacher came along and said: “Why are you standing there
staring down at those ingredients and what were you trying to make?”
“Pie crust,” said the first woman. “But I don’t feel right combining
them. Something’s wrong.”
“You’re correct about that,” said the seasoned cook. “Eggs don’t
belong in that recipe. Nor do baking powder, sugar and milk. And one
ingredient is missing: the shortening to make it flaky and tender.”
A lot of pastors are trying to build a church out of the wrong
ingredients--vain traditions of men. Right doctrine quickened by My Spirit
is essential for founding a church and it is My happy task to knit the
right people together in the Love of the Spirit. Else “church” is little
more than a club meeting that leaves people just as hungry as when they
walked in the door.
Just for Looks
There was a lonely little boy who wanted a dog. Someone to lick his
face, play catch with and curl up against on cold winter nights. Someone
to share all of life with.
But his mother was so concerned with keeping the house tidy she
resisted the idea. A dog would shed hairs on the floor and might be too
difficult to housebreak. It might even attract fleas.
One day she called the child into the living room. “I have s
surprise for you,” she said. “Look over there, under the tree.”
To his dismay it was a large stuffed toy. It was a fine work of art,
with shiny brown “eyes” and glossy fur. A big red ribbon was tied around
“There’s the perfect pet dog,” the mother said. “You can cuddle up to
him anytime you like, and my, how he’ll brighten up your room. Best of
all, he won’t make messes for me to clean up.”
“But can he play ball with me, Mother?” asked the small boy.
“No, son, he can’t. I’m afraid he’s dead.”
A lot of churches brighten up the landscape, but they’re just for
Don’t Lose Your Luster
Song of Solomon 2:15; Daniel 12:3; Matthew 13:43 ;
Nothing is more beautiful and precious in My sight than to see the
love of Christ reflected in the countenance of one of My dear children.
Joy unspeakable fills the heart of a person at the moment of his
conversion. There is a freshness and wonder about being alive which
hadn’t been there before. The reason is this: Before being born again,
you’re only physically alive, for you are dead spiritually until My Spirit
quickens your spirit to newness of life.
The Baptism of the Holy Spirit makes you feel even more complete, for
through this unspeakable blessing, you are endowed with additional power
to live as a believer, and there is an even more wonderful sense of My
abiding Presence. A sense of sparkling cleanliness and an anointing of
divine love rest upon one who has received these favors from Me.
The Spirit-led believer finds he has much more of an appetite to
learn of eternal truths than he did before. The Spirit imparts a much
greater aptitude for grasping the truths of the Kingdom, and motivates a
believer to earnestly desire to serve Me. There are godly desires,
whereas before, there had been many sinful ones. A believer who is full
of My Spirit feels a great responsibility to learn My ways, do My will,
and grow in My love.
But that believer also possesses a childlike aspect which is
precious to Me. The joy of the Lord literally shines in his eyes, and
imparts a joyous effervescence to his voice. His handshake or hug is
real, and when he asks how you are doing he genuinely cares. Heaven seems
far more real and glorious to him. He stops to admire a flower or a
brilliant sunset. Praise and singing well up in the heart of a
Spirit-baptized saint, for he is deeply in love with his King. He finds
it a joy to share My overflowing love with those around him. He
unashamedly tells others that all of Creation was made by his loving
Heavenly Father, and that nothing is impossible for Me. Childlike joy and
humility go hand-in-hand with the wisdom imparted by the Spirit of God.
Whenever such a believer’s experience begins to lose its luster, it
is because of the little foxes sneaking into the vineyard I have so
carefully cultivated. I have seen more than one radiant Christian youth
grow colder as he grew older. Many lose, by degrees, the vitality of
their relationship with Me. Beset by temptations and the increasing
pressures of adulthood, the young Christian may feel that his life is no
longer so glorious as it used to be. This gritty world can take its toll
on a person’s emotions and thought processes, if daily help is not sought
from Me. That joy which once shone so brilliantly fades until it barely
glimmers, although the person still performs Christian duties and lives
an upright life among his peers.
I have known many a believer who once was an example of childlike
simplicity in letting Me live My Love through him or her. These people
enjoyed giving so much that they hardly noticed any cost or inconvenience
to themselves. One person was so well-acquainted with Me that others
with whom she interacted would comment that it felt like being around
Jesus Himself. Selfless deeds of love and words of encouragement would
spring forth from the life of this believer. Truly her words would fill
the hearer with a joyous hope. Wherever you saw her, you also encountered
the Christ within her. She refreshed the souls of many, for she was
overflowing with Springs of Living Water.
What happened to a great many of these young people who were once so
full of My unfettered Love? They married or developed other close
soul-ties with people whose lights weren’t shining so brightly. One
radiant girl who spread My joy all around married a cynical man with a
barbed tongue. A man who had a ministry of cheerful giving married a
parsimonious woman who pinches pennies. There was a poor woman who
joyfully shared what little she had and saw the riches of the Eternal City
through the eyes of faith. She married a hypocrite who made a
comfortable living by defrauding others in his business dealings. Gradual,
subtle changes took place in the dispositions and attitudes of all these
It really does take My power to set a good example for your closest
loved ones, rather than adapting yourself to them by “toning down” the
outshining of My Life within you. This is no light matter with Me. If
you long to have your First Love rekindled within your heart, call unto Me
in repentance and faith. I am eager to bestow upon you a fresh new
anointing of My Spirit. Never seek to please other people rather than Me.
I will never settle for second place in anyone’s life.
Only Empty Hands Can Receive
Here was a man who’d climbed the ladder and reached the top. He
boasted the equivalent of a post-doctorate degree in theology. He could
speak several languages fluently. He was a truly brilliant man. He
excelled all others in his field, so his word carried great weight with
the religious establishment of his day. He literally held the power of
life and death over people who didn’t share his views, so it was very
dangerous to differ with him. His future looked very bright indeed.
But when he saw a much greater Brightness, he had to throw all his
old toys away so he would have room to receive My riches. Saul the
Persecutor died and Paul the Apostle was born.
Just another Job
So many times it is I Who actually feel like the “odd man out” in
church services. I feel like just another task to get out of the way on
people’s weekly schedules. I see how people file into the sanctuary,
chitchatting with one another over the weather, sports, fashion, and
making small talk about trivial things and mutual acquaintances.
Sometimes it is a real task for that one overworked and under-appreciated
member of my Body, the pastor, to restore order and get the congregation
in the mood for praise choruses to warm them up for the more reflective
worship songs. And once the benediction is prayed, “church” is over and
the gossip fest immediately takes up where it left off.
I read the minds of many saints whose minds are far, far away as they
sing. One woman worries about her roast simmering in the oven. Will it
be all dried out because she left it in too long? I see a man hoping his
favorite sports team will win the big game of the season. A young girl
frets over whether some young man likes her or not, and she passes notes
to her friend sitting next to her, as if it couldn’t wait till the short
service is over!. And, most heartrending of all, a man or woman so deeply
burdened by bills or a family breakup in the making, they find it nearly
impossible to sing out of their heavy-laden hearts.
The biggest misconception about the word “church” is that it is
something you go to, like the theater or a ball game, rather than
something you are, a family of brothers and sisters united in the Spirit
of the Love of Christ. Church-going is not to be viewed as a duty you must
carry out at intervals, like going to a job or PTA meeting. The
fellowship of the Body of Christ is there to benefit you and build you up;
and you, in turn, can supply that measure of the ministry of Christ
lacking in other people’s lives.
When you gather together, let it be a love tryst between you and
Christ, your Beloved Bridegroom.
Church: Ritual or Relationship?
John 15:12,17; Mark 7:9; Col.2:2-3; Eph.4:12-16
When people enter a dead congregation it is truly a whited sepulchre
which seems to have a form of godliness but is full of decaying traditions
of men which never could impart life eternal. Are visitors to blame for
not finding reality in dead form? Where in My Word do I ever enjoin empty
ritual upon My church? Even the haughty Pharisees prided themselves on
the observance of their own manmade traditions.
Sunday after Sunday people salve their conscience by "going to
church" to get their weekly dose. But much of the time they either come
out of the building unchanged or even worse off than they were before
because still more unscriptural error has been drilled into them. At such
places their hearts grow heavier as their pocketbooks grow lighter. The
appearance of religiosity is there in the fancy fixtures and empty rituals
but the reality of life in Christ Jesus is missing.
Where you have a bunch of cold dead entities you have a desperate mob
who are not being fed the Bread of Life that they might be renewed unto
life. But wherever two or three or more are gathered in My Name to hear
the Voice of their shepherd I am there. I am in your midst, O My people,
as the Good Shepherd to feed My flock the milk and the meat of My Word. I
am with you to equip you to be able to minister that portion of anointing
I breathe into each and every one of you, that ye might strengthen and
encourage one another and care one for another, and be able to reach a
lost and dying world with My message of redeeming love. For truly, says
the Lord, as the various members of My Body are knit together, giving and
receiving the life-giving sap of My love through the anointing of the
Spirit to become as one and work together as one, that is the true meaning
of church. I reject the false ecumenical unity being promoted by a
cunning deceitful devil to get men's eyes off the true Christ of the
Bible. But I will have a Bride knit together in My Love before My
You can carry out all the elaborate, expensive rituals and programs
you want, but without Me ye can do nothing. Only what I accomplish
through you and among you will count for eternity.
Your Praises Bring Me Glory
Habakkuk 3:17-18; John 16:24; Romans 8:19-21
I love to see the smiles on the faces of My children when I do
something special to meet their need. It brings you great joy to see
daily evidences of My love and concern for every facet of your life. It
brings great glory and honor to My Son for you to praise the Father and
thank Me for My timely provision.
Indeed, you will begin to see answers come to prayers you prayed long
ago and were tempted to give up on as hopeless causes. You who are filled
with MY Spirit are also filled with My Glory, and you are drawing nearer
to the Age of Glory when even nature itself shall be set free to praise Me
The Mighty Wind of the Spirit
Ezek. 37:4-5; Mark 7:6-9; Acts 2:1-4
Truly it is far better to light one candle than to curse the
darkness. But how can you keep a candle burning in an airless room? It
takes the breath of My Spirit to keep My love alive in the hearts of my
loved ones. Pray for Me to send a great move of the Mighty Wind of the
Spirit so that stuffy, loveless congregations will be infused with a
fresh anointing of My Life.
Some claim they don’t need it. Why? There is plenty of religion in
the world, and that’s good enough for them. That’s the crux of the
problem. Sunday after Sunday My still small Voice is being drowned out by
programs of men. Refreshing from on high is not sought for to revive
weary hearts. Saints are drowsing in the aisles from the staleness in the
air. Let the Breath of God inspire you to love as Jesus loved, and to
walk as He walked.
Let Your Light So Shine
Daniel 12:3; Matthew 5:16; Philippians 2:15
Many carnal-minded believers are like shooting stars. A shooting
star only appears to be a star, but it is just a meteor. Its
brightness appears for a brief time, reaches a zenith, and begins to curve
downward, descending until it is seen no more. Why? Because of the
fleeting, flawed nature of human goodness. It endures but for a time. It
is as insubstantial as cotton candy. Soon it runs out of steam, for it is
dependent on the whimsical nature of the flesh. It fades like a fair
flower, then dries up and dies, for the comeliness of the flesh nature is
destined to pass away.
Many begin to take Me for granted. It is dangerous to think that My
loving nature is something you can achieve by human effort. It isn’t. As
soon as you begin to tire of people you don’t consider “ fun to be
around”, you begin to grow chilly toward them in hopes of brushing them
off. It really does take daily refreshing in My Presence to renew your
capacity to love people of all personality types. Enmity is a by-product
of the Fall of Adam. First he was estranged from Me, because he was no
longer without sin and could not abide My Holy Presence. Then, his
relationship with Eve was ruined because she had wheedled him into
partaking of the forbidden fruit, so as to oblige him to share her exile
from the Garden. Hostilities broke out among some of Adam’s children.
Throughout the ages, tensions have existed between diverse ethnic groups
and even between church denominations, because fallen human nature is
utterly vile and incapable of My Love. My nature must be imparted to you
through My grace. It is a gift, not a byproduct of human will-power!
Abide in Me. Allow Me to daily mortify that abominable Adamic nature
which is contrary to My Love; that rebellious bent which is so loathsome
in My sight. Let My Light shine forever through you. I have even ignited
your candle with Holy Fire from My own. Allow it to burn; don’t snuff it
out. My saints are to shine as lights in this world, that they may show
lost humanity that I alone am the Way, the Truth, and the Life.
Abide in My Love
Dan. 12:3; Matt. 5:16; 25:1-13; John 15:4-10
Those who will not abide in My Love are like shooting stars. Their
brightness appears for a brief time, reaches a zenith, and gradually
curves downward, until their light is seen no more. Why? Human goodness
endures but for a short time. It soon runs out of its own steam, and
little by little it is depleted like the oil going out in the lamps of the
five foolish virgins. These girls missed the wedding because their heart
wasn’t fully set on the Bridegroom and they were all wrapped up in their
Abide in Me. Let My light shine forever through you. You are not
its source. I alone am the light of the World, and I delight in sharing
My brightness with you as you continually seek to be refilled with My
Spirit of Love and grace.
A Wall of Fire
Eccl.10:8; Song 2:15; Zech.2:5; Heb.12:29; I Pet.1:22
The enemy counts on your human imperfections and mistakes, saith the
Lord, to make a hole in your life whereby he may gain entrance to oppress
you with a multitude of vexations. A hedge of protection is needed against
satan, and all too often, there are places where the enemy can penetrate.
Ye must band together in the Spirit, saith the Lord, to resist the devil,
whether he focuses his attack on one or two of you, or concentrates on
hurting the whole assembly of the saints.
Never lose sight of your vital need for one another, as members of My
dear family united in My Love. A wall of stones which are loosely packed
together is marred by tiny cracks and crevices which are no problem for a
snake to slither through. All too often the Lively Stones of My Body drift
apart from each other, because the fruits of the Spirit are not carefully
cultivated with diligence. Fervent love in the Spirit dries up and cracks
in Christian relationships form because the weak, dying flesh nature comes
to the forefront. It asserts dominance over and quenches My Spirit.
Wherever such problems are found in church congregations, the enemy has a
wide entrance to sow seeds of division and to let in the little foxes to
spoil the tender vines.
Far better than a flawed stone wall is a wall of Fire round about
you. Even as I shall in future days be a Wall of Fire round about
Jerusalem to defend her from enemies, so would I be a Wall of Fire round
about you, O My people, a barrier of impenetrable power and might. The
fire of My fierce anger against your unseen foe is so hot that the Serpent
fears to approach near unto it, much less try to bore holes through it to
wriggle through it. Pray earnestly in the Spirit that ye might even be
surrounded by that Holy Fire of the Spirit which will be a Comfort and a
Light unto you, even as it is a terror unto the enemy. Seek Me that I
might anoint you afresh with a heaven-sent anointing that imparts divine
power and protection, not just upon your individual lives, but upon your
corporate life as a congregation united in My Love.
By Patricia Backora
IF YOU HAVE ANY COMMENTS, QUESTIONS OR WOULD JUST LIKE TO SHARE THOUGHTS,
CONTACT ME AT: