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Sunday, August 10, 2014

ARE YOU READY?

No matter where you are in the world, there is a lot of fear in the land at this time. It really doesn’t take much to know that we are truly in the last days. In my country, in addition to the already existing insecurity and insurgency, a new enemy - the very deadly Ebola virus, made its entrance unto the scene a couple of weeks back. The Ebola virus is not one that can be ascribed to any religious intolerance, ethnic discriminations, class distinctions, or divergent political affiliations. It is an enemy that is quite literally no respecter of persons… and its right here in our space!

People have died, and new cases are being reported in different regions. What is clear to me however is that what is happening now is not about the Ebola virus per se. No sis, it’s about a harvest of souls…. And a dark harvest at that! It’s a dark harvest because there is the question of just how many of those souls that have gone and will go, are ready to meet the Lord. Ebola is one more way that the enemy has released a spirit of fear into the land and into the hearts of believers and unbelievers alike. And boy is there great fear in the land!

My son was invited by another friend to go along with him for an open mic talent contest at his church. I had said this was fine because my son is quite the artist, to the glory of God, and we do everything we can to support him in this. We went out together, having agreed I would drop him off at this church to meet up with his friend on my way out. There wasn’t as much traffic as I had anticipated though and so I asked him to call to confirm how close his friend was to the church. My reasoning was that since this wasn’t our home church, I would rather he went with me first to see my friend first, rather than have him sit alone waiting in unfamiliar territory. Well guess what? He called and his friend said to him that his mother had decided he should not attend the event because they were concerned about the spread of the Ebola virus and so were being careful around going to public places. Seriously? Would this mean they would not be in church this Sunday then? Hmmm!

Social media is agog with one Ebola-related thing or the other. Some people have even found it in themselves to post jokes about what is a very deadly virus. I personally don’t see anything funny about a real situation that has the potential to wipe out hundreds of men, women and children in the space of a few weeks. Then of course, there are the superstitious opinions and the highly uneducated guesses that end up being broadcast on social media with such rapidity that makes clear that the senders are cloaked in fear, and so are unable to make rational judgments about the misinformation they then broadcast. Between those who are advocating bathing in and drinking salt water, to those who now refuse handshakes, to those who are avoiding going out – even to church; all that is manifesting is the spirit of fear pervading the land.

Yes sis, I hear you ask if we shouldn’t take extra care in the face of this reality. Surely we should. But, methinks there is a clear difference between being careful and operating in fear. If we would but settle down and allow the Spirit of God to minister to us, we would usually be able to discern when we have crossed the line of carefulness and entered into the realm of fearfulness. God has said that He has NOT given us a spirit of fear. And fear is certainly a spirit, sis. It is a spirit from the pit of hell. Fear is a spirit that can hold you down right where you are seated. Fear works by taking over your mind so completely that you are literally paralyzed. Fear grips at your heart, constricting it so much so that you can sometimes hardly breathe. Fear works to hold you back from doing the thing(s) that God has designed you to do. Fear holds you back from experiencing the life of abundance which is God’s design for you and I.

Sis, allowing fear to overtake us is really you and I saying that we don’t believe in God. Hard word, but oh so true! Our Father already knew that fear would be one of the enemy’s strategies to keep His children away from His fullness. He already knew that flesh would fail us. He is God remember? That is why His word (which He exalted above His name) tells us to cast our fears on Him. God has said effectively ‘I know that of your flesh, fear will come; but of your spirit, stand in faith that nothing is impossible for me, that I am with you and I am mindful of you’.

My daughter’s godfather said to me about 20years ago, that there were six million ways to die already and so he couldn’t understand why anyone would be afraid of that one more way – in this case, Ebola. Think about it with me, sis. There is no guarantee whatsoever that when we go to bed at night, we will wake up the next morning, even when we went to bed in absolutely good health. Those great people who lost their lives in the 9/11 attack got up, had breakfast and were working as usual in their offices when those planes came flying in. Yet you and I head off to work every day with a sense of certainly that at the end of the day, we will head home once again. On those really bad days, we are practically counting the minutes so we can ‘just leave this place’. What do we know sis? What did any of those 9/11 guys know? Who would have told them they would die at work?

This is a season where many of us are hopping on one flight or the other for our holidays. Many of us have to take one flight or the other for that quick meeting, that presentation at our corporate head office, and so on. Sis, what did those guys on the Malaysian airline know? How could they have imagined that they would board a plane that would disappear over the deep sea and till today has not been found? Sis, who could have told the other guys that their plane would be shot out of the skies… a passenger plane? In 2014? Who could have told them sis? Who could have told that couple who went out for a nice romantic dinner that the wife would choke on her meal and die right there at the restaurant, in front of her husband? And yet, you and I pounce on our meals everyday like it’s a given that eating does not put us at the risk of death. Hmmm! Need I go on?

There are a million stories and ways in which people can and will die sis. Life is great, and we all want to live, but… death, by whatever means, is a constant. And… the dead are dead! The dead are not looking back and thinking how horrendously they might have died – in an accident, through a horrible disease like Ebola, if they were gruesomely murdered… whatever. NO! The dead are dead. The thinking and analyzing and regretting, etc are for the living to do. The dead are dead, and are immediately having to face God the Father in the ultimate accountability for the lives that they lived here on earth.

Sis, this is the crux of the matter! We do not need to fear death, for when it comes to us, the only thing that will matter to us who are then the dead, will be which side of the eternity divide we are headed for in that instant. So yeah, I pray that Ebola or whatever other evil disease or situation out there does not come near my family. Yes, I pray that I will live long enough to see my children’s children. Yes, I pray that by the time I go, painful as my death would be for them, my children will be old enough and established enough not to find themselves in the place of dependency. Yes, I pray that I will not be widowed in the prime of my life. Yes, I pray that I will never have to bury any one of my children and grandchildren. I pray all these, yes… but more than anything else, I pray that should the Lord’s time for me be earlier than I would like, that when I am called, I will be called into His amazing presence and that I will have the privilege of resting in His love for all eternity in heaven. This is my greatest heart cry!

Making it heaven is ALL that counts, sis. So, today I am calling on you and indeed myself to again reexamine our lives and be sure we are in alignment with God the Father. Today, I am again calling on anyone who has not yet given their life to Jesus Christ, to do so today. It is not difficult. It is as simple as this prayer:
“Lord Jesus, I believe in You. I believe You are the Son of God. I believe You lived and died for ME. I believe You shed Your Blood on the Cross at Calvary for my sake. Lord, I come to You fully repentant. Forgive me my sins, My father and my Lord. Wash me clean with Your Blood. Fill me with Your light and truth. Lord, write my name in Your Book of Life. Help me! Hold me! Teach me Lord. Help me to live for You. Show me the way Father. I give you my body, my mind, my will, and my emotions. I give you all that I am and all that I have and I ask that You turn my life around and use it for Your glory. I declare today I am born again of the Spirit of the Living God. I declare that Jesus is Lord over my life, in Jesus name Amen”

For those of us who are already in Christ, I call on you and I today to cling even more closely to the Cross. I call on each of us today to do a spiritual exercise and examine and be truthful to ourselves about what little foxes we have allowed into our vineyards, of what areas of our lives we have kept from yielding up fully to the Lord. Sis, each of us must be in ‘Ready’ position all the time. We must! Our lives are a race to the Cross, to the glorious crown from the King of Kings Himself, to eternal rest in our beautiful heavenly Father. Today the Lord is assuring us that there is a reason He has repeatedly told us ‘Fear Not!’ We cannot be so held down by the fear of death and dying that we lose sight of this. God is on the throne and if we are in Him, our end is always good. We have no idea when our last day will be, sis! Indeed, we will never know the how or the when. The Spirit of the Lord is however reminding us today that the ‘how’ of our dying is irrelevant, but the ‘when’ is critical. Sis, we cannot afford not to be ready at our ‘when’. Our ‘when’ is the end of our sojourn on this earth, and in the end, our readiness is all that counts for eternity, if truth be told.

Today I speak over you and I a prayer that the Lord will hide this truth deep in our hearts. I speak a prayer that we will truly know that the Lord in a wall of fire around about us and the glory that is in the midst of us. I pray that by the power of the Holy Spirit, we will align ourselves with the Father; that as we continue to behold Him, He will conform us daily more and more into His image of glory. I speak a heavenly blessing over us and declare that none of us will be lost, in Jesus name. I declare that that we will not die before the time the Lord has appointed for us, in Jesus name. I declare that regardless of how we eventually die this earthly death, we will live the eternal life in the bosom of the Lord, in Jesus name. I hear the Spirit of the Lord call us to be ready sis, and I hear His quiet steadfast assurance: ‘I will help you, My child’. In Christ we are helped sis. How glorious is that?


Be blessed sis… for you surely are!

4 comments:

  1. No truer words have I heard in recent times. Thanks Sis for being a willing vessel for and of God Almighty. May HIS Grace be with us and help us through our race of preparedness in Jesus Mighty Name. Amen.

    ReplyDelete
  2. Absolutely spot on my sister. Thank you for reminding us of what is important.

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  3. Well said Audrey. May God give us grace to stand strong in these times, rise above the fear and truly live FOR Him.

    Anne (Ontario)

    ReplyDelete

Thank you for taking the time to share you thoughts. You are loved and appreciated.

About Me

Entrepreneur, Mentor, Wife, Mother, Sister, Friend. A firm believer in God. Walking in faith everyday that by His grace, I will achieve harmony in all areas of my life, and make measurable impact in the lives of other women of the world

WORD FOR THE WEEK

LUKE 1:

34“-How can this be, Mary asked the angel, “since I am a virgin?” 35The angel replied, “The Holy Spirit will come upon you, and the power of the Most High will overshadow you. So the Holy One to be born will be called the Son of God

JEREMIAH 2:

5 Before I formed you in the womb I knew [and] approved of you [as My chosen instrument], and before you were born I separated and set you apart, consecrating you; [and] I appointed you as a prophet to the nations.

6 Then said I, Ah, Lord God! Behold, I cannot speak, for I am only a youth. 7 But the Lord said to me, Say not, I am only a youth; for you shall go to all to whom I shall send you, and whatever I command you, you shall speak.

8 Be not afraid of them [their faces], for I am with you to deliver you, says the Lord. 9 Then the Lord put forth His hand and touched my mouth. And the Lord said to me, Behold, I have put My words in your mouth. 10 See, I have this day appointed you to the oversight of the nations and of the kingdoms to root out and pull down, to destroy and to overthrow, to build and to plant.

1st CORINTHIANS 1:

25 [This is] because the foolish thing [that has its source in] God is wiser than men, and the weak thing [that springs] from God is stronger than men. 26 For [simply] consider your own call, brethren; not many [of you were considered to be] wise according to human estimates and standards, not many influential and powerful, not many of high and noble birth. 27 [No] for God selected (deliberately chose) what in the world is foolish to put the wise to shame, and what the world calls weak to put the strong to shame. 28 And God also selected (deliberately chose) what in the world is lowborn and insignificant and branded and treated with contempt, even the things that are nothing, that He might depose and bring to nothing the things that are,

Colossians 1:

28 Him we preach and proclaim, warning and admonishing everyone and instructing everyone in all wisdom (comprehensive insight into the ways and purposes of God), that we may present every person mature (full-grown, fully initiated, complete, and perfect) in Christ (the Anointed One).

29 For this I labor [[z]unto weariness], striving with all the superhuman energy which He so mightily enkindles and works within me.