Wednesday, 13 June 2012

This is what greeted us as we arrived at the 'Cherish' Conference and I have to say I had the most fantastic four days. I have always wondered about these huge conferences and wasn't quite sure what to expect but the teaching was excellent and the praise and worship very moving. 
One of the speakers was Lucinda Dooley.  Lucinda showed a picture of her mum on the big screen and said that her mum had left her a beautiful legacy of faith.  She went on to ask what kind of legacy we would leave and this really did bless me.
Lucinda went on to say much more. She said that we ought to be leaving a lasting legacy. Her mum could have left a negative legacy and if that was your mum and you'd been caused a hurt the Jesus is the restorer of the soul and you can honour your mum just because she's give you life.
We needed to be leaving something of real worth and value, a good foundation for those coming after you.
She stressed the need to get our children to church so that they can get through seasons of challenge and said that every choice we made would take us somewhere and that we needed to ensure the choices we made were not selfish. If we made the right choices then we would be leaving a spiritual inheritance for our children's children.
Paul, she said, left a lasting legacy of genuine faith. We need to do the same. This genuine faith needs to be a raging fire. A real fire spreads fast and is difficult to contain and this is what we need to do, fan into flame the fire on the inside of us.  I would love to be able to explain in more detail what she said with the scriptures she used but I hope the little bit I've shared will be a blessing to you.

Quite a number of years ago I visited a little gospel mission in my home town and met a lovely lady called Hilda.  It turned out Hilda knew my family and with tears in her eyes told me that to see me going on with the Lord was such a blessing to her.  Apparently as a young girl she remembered my great, grandmother and said how much she loved the Lord and that she was such a great prayer warrior.  She remembered my grandma Murray praying for her children's children.  This was a huge blessing to me and even more so after listening to Lucinda Dooley asking what type of legacy we would leave behind.
I have a very clear memory of seeing my great grandmother.  I remember my aunt Vi taking me as a young child to visit someone in hospital. I remember the room having an old fashioned metal bed and the walls being painted white with a small window with bars across it in the corner of the room.  In the bed was a very frail old lady and as I got older I realised that this had been my great grandmother and my aunt Vi confirmed it.

I determined after this message from Lucinda that I wanted to leave behind the type of legacy my great grandmother had left; one of faith in a Saviour who loved her and one of praying for her children's children.
I have three of the most beautiful grandchildren and am blessed that they are growing up with Christian parents, but I shall still be praying that the Lord will have his hand upon their life just as he has had on mine all these years. What a wonderful and most awesome Saviour Jesus Christ is.

Just chillin' out with a cuppa before going into conference.




Sunday, 10 June 2012

'I'

SIN - only a three letter word but such a big thing. Sin is something which separates the unbeliever from the love of God but John 3:16 says
'For God so loved the world that he gave his only begotten son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish but have everlasting life'

In other words Jesus death at calvary took care of SIN - my sin, your sin and one important thing about that word SIN is the middle letter I. You see I was the one that committed sin, nobody else did it for me, I did it but Jesus paid the penalty for the sins I committed by giving himself up to death so that I could be set free from sin. I'm so glad I repented of my sin and asked him to be my Saviour and Lord at an early age.

You see sometimes it becomes more difficult the older a person gets to accept who Jesus is and sometimes the reason for that is -

PRIDE - Pride is a strange thing. A person can become too proud to admit that they have a problem, too proud to think that they have need of a Saviour and did you notice there's that letter again, right at the centre of PRIDE - I.
A person can become so proud that they believe they are good people, not sinners, and that God will not allow them to go to hell, but the bible says 'For all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God' (Romans 3:2). Every person no matter who they are have sinned, God says so Romans 6:23 says For the wages of sin is death; but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord. Because He loves us He also made a way for us to be free from that sin - But God commendeth his love toward us, in that, while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us (Romans 5:8).

If you are reading this and realise that you are a sinner then don't let pride stand in your way, repent of your sin - turn away from doing what you know to be wrong and start following the one one who is always right - The Lord Jesus Christ. 'I', will not then be at the centre of your life but He who is the great I AM will be.

The LORD bless thee, and keep thee:
The LORD make his face shine upon thee, and be gracious unto thee:
The LORD lift up his countenance upon thee, and give thee peace.
(Numbers 6:24-26

Tuesday, 5 June 2012

FAITH - Forsaking all I Trust Him

There have been times in my Christian life when I've worried that I've lost my salvation. Times when I'd let the Lord down and wondered if I'd committed so great a sin that the Lord had written me off, had crossed my name out of the Lamb's book of life.
I'd listened to preachers talk about stirring up the gifts of the spirit and wondered why I felt flat and unusable and it was times like these I thought of myself as an Esau, who had sold his birthright for a morsal of meat and although he had sought it and shed tears he found no place of repentance (Gen 25:27-34).
I wondered if I had got to a point in my life when even though I had asked to be filled with the Holy Spirit, nothing happened; I asked myself the question 'am I lukewarm, has my flame gone out'.
I tried to fan this flame but something was missing and I just didn't know what it was.
Those were the times that I began to feel so alone and sort of sorry for myself - but I knew deep down I was never alone and I'm thankful that the Lord reminded me of something he told me at the start of my Christian walk with him.

"The just shall live by faith (Heb 10:38), by His faith - Hab 2:4 his soul which is lifted up is not upright in him: but the just shall live by his faith - not by feelings.
My feelings get me into all kinds of trouble, I don't feel saved, I don't feel as if I've any gifts, I don't feel the Lord can use me, I don't feel as if I have the Holy Spirit with me and the list goes on.
But you know a little faith goes a long way, Jesus said in Mark 27:20 that faith as small as a mustard seed can remove mountains. Did you hear that, FAITH as SMALL as a mustard seed can REMOVE mountains. Not just move the mountain that is before you or I but can REMOVE it. Take it out of the way completely, gone forever.
And this is what the Lord continues to show me. I may not feel of of any use at all some days but I haven't got to worry about it because the Bible, God's word says 'I have' - I have salvation, I have the gifts of the spirit, I have all of this because of Jesus, because of what he did, because of his shed blood, because he loved me enough to die for me and because he was obedient to death on a cross.
So what is FAITH? Paul says in Hebrews 11:1 Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen...
Do read this chapter of Hebrews -  it let me see how much faith these old testament people had in God. They didn't rely on any feelings they just had faith.
I wrote as the title for these words FAITH -  'Forsaking all I trust Him'. I read this acrostic some time ago and surely this is faith.

Trusting our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ. We have to stay close to Jesus, and close to the word, and listen.
I realised that it was the voice of the enemy telling me these things, telling me I wasn't saved, I was of no use. He'd much prefer it if Christians got so hung up about not doing, not feeling, not having something because then it makes his job easier. If we listen to the voice of the enemy we would never have faith, we would never be a victorious people and we ARE victorious we have that liberty because of what Christ did at Calvary.

I'm reminded of the beautiful hymn by Eugene Barlett - Victory in Jesus (listen to it here http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_K7JiUEl23E or read the words ..
I heard an old, old story, How a Savior came from glory,
How He gave His life on Calvary, To save a wretch like me;
 I heard about His groaning, Of His precious blood's atoning,
Then I repented of my sins And won the victory.
Chorus
O victory in Jesus, My Savior, forever.
He sought me and bought me, With His redeeming blood;
He loved me ere I knew Him, And all my love is due Him,
He plunged me to victory, Beneath the cleansing flood.

I heard about His healing, Of His cleansing pow'r revealing.
How He made the lame to walk again And caused the blind to see;
And then I cried, "Dear Jesus, Come and heal my broken spirit"
And somehow Jesus came and bro't To me the victory.

Chorus

I heard about a mansion He has built for me in glory.
And I heard about the streets of gold, Beyond the crystal sea;
About the angels singing, And the old redemption story,
And some sweet day I'll sing up there The song of victory.

Chorus

Faith is simply believing that Jesus is - is who he said he is, the son of God, come to this earth to die for the sins of the world.
Faith is knowing he will accomplish in my life all that he set out to do - to make me more like him - to make you more like him -
Whatever I am going through, whatever I am feeling or not feeling I KNOW that my redeemer liveth and I will one day see him face to face.
I know because I have faith. Faith in Jesus. FORSAKING ALL I TRUST HIM

The Word of the Lord is Pure

Psalm 12:6
The words of the Lord are pure words: as silver tried in a furnace of earth, purified seven times.

The Lord showed me through this verse that even as a Christian I need to have my words purifed. Sometimes I can say things that I don't realise are hurtful to another person. I can say things that puff me up, make me proud but always the Lord is there to show me that my words need to be refined - I need to be refined - and what a faithful God I have who shows me the way.

You see I have a little craft unit where I make enamelled jewellery. I work in copper and when I've sifted on the enamel powders I put the piece of copper into the kiln which has been heated to around 750 deg C. The reddy orange glow from the kiln lets you know it is hot - very hot.
I'm reminded of what it must have been like for Shadrach, Meschach and Abnego when they were bound and thrown down into the fiery furnace. Far hotter, I am sure, than my little kiln. I know what the heat feels like when I open my kiln door and can imagine just how hot it must have been for these young men. But do you know what, they weren't in that furnace alone, the Lord himself was with them.

Now I have always wanted to work with silver to do my enamelling on but it works differently to copper. In sterling silver there are a lot of impurities and you have to ensure that the impurities burn away. This is done by heating the silver in the kiln until the impurities rise to the surface, then taking it out it is quenching in water. It then has to be cleaned before being put into the kiln again. This is done a few times before the silver is purified and fine enough to be enamelled.

I have many a disaster trying to work with the silver, often I leave it too long and it melts completely. It looks lovely when I see it in the kiln all liquidy and shiney but the minute I take it out is solidifies and sticks to the mesh that I have been firing it on and I see the impurities on the surface. But through these processes that I use the Lord has shown me that I still need to be put into the furnace from time to time.

He has shown me that my words need to be purified - I need to be purified - and just as I go through the refining fire I know that I am not alone, Jesus is with me.

I am reminded each time I put my kiln on that the Lord continues to refine and try me; to put me through the flame so that the impurities in my life are burned away.

When thou walkest through the fire, thou shalt not be burned; neither shall the flame kindle upon thee. For I am the Lord thy God, the Holy One of Israel (Isaiah 43: 1-3)

Posted by Jean

My posts

I am trying to get all of my thoughts and writings into my own blog and some of those I have just posted have been taken from other blogs I've written for so if you think you've read them before and were perhaps encouraged I hope they will again encourage you.

I can see clearly now

Driving along the Shenstone Road I suddenly saw a house that had a FOR SALE sign outside and the words SOLD in big letters across it.

I saw another 2 houses further along the road and realized I hadn't even noticed these before - so why, I asked myself, did I see them now.

Was it just the the bright For Sale sign that had caught my attention or the very bold Sold written across the sign - NO - very simply it was winter.
I usually travelled this road in the summer when the sun was shining and when the leaves on the trees were full and green. There was a row of bushes and hedges along the roadside too. These houses were hidden from view by the summer foliage - but now it was winter, the trees had shed their leaves and I could see the houses clearly through the spaces between the branches.

The Lord showed me that we need the warmth of the summer months to keep us going but when summer is here we can be too busy doing other things, the gardens need tending, the sun shines and we go out for the day, and come home and spend long hours sitting outside with friends or family and we can be busy being so busy that we neglect to spend our time with the Lord and we don't see things clearly.

In winter time it's different - if you are anything like me you stay home, the nights have grown darker and colder and all I want to do is stay in the warmth,. I find that I want to spend more time in the warmth of His love too and I read my bible more, and talk to the Lord more and because of this I can see more clearly what he wants for me.

Even the hedge along the roadside brought to mind that sometimes we can put a hedge up around our life. If things are difficult we may not want to let others in or want them to see that we are struggling with something. The hedge gets bigger and bigger as it grows and it too can prevent us from seeing things clearly. If the hedge in our life is cut down we are exposed, others will see the struggles that we may be experiencing and the Lord can allow these people to come alongside and help us. We can also see more clearly where the Lord wants us to be.

But just think there will come a day when we will be able to see the Lord face to face.

For now we see through a glass, darkly, but then face to face: now I know in part; but then shall I know even as also I am known 1 Cor 13:12)
Yes, a bunch of sweet Peas. I can't take the credit for this but I'd like to share with you this bunch of Sweet Peas, Gathered from Psalm 23. I read this on a card I'd received from someone ...


Possession - The Lord is my shepherd
Provision - I shall not want
Position - He maketh me to lie down
Privilege - In green pastures
Preservation - He restoreth my soul
Progress - He leadeth me in the paths of righteousness
Peace - I will fear no evil
Presence - Thou art with me
Preparation - Thou preparest a table before me
Plenty - My cup runneth over
Pursuit - Goodness and mercy shall follow me
Prospect - I will dwell in the house of the Lord for ever

Jesus is the Vine

I am the vine, ye are the branches: He that abideth in me, and I in him, the same bringeth forth much fruit: for without me ye can do nothing. (John 15:5)
We had just had a light fall of snow a couple of weeks ago and as I drove to my little craft studio I was aware of just how cold it had become. I pulled up in the car park beside the row of trees lining the adjoining field. As I looked across the field I could just see where the snow had fallen and I could make out the cathedral in the distance. It's a lovely view. This particular morning I noticed in front of the car a small tree with almost bare branches apart from a few leaves that seemed to be clinging to those branches. They seemed to be holding on for all they were worth despite the cold and the snow, as if somehow they knew that to let go would mean they would wither and die because their source of nourishment had gone.

I was reminded of our need as Christians to hold on for all we are worth to the source of our nourishment, to the one who said of himself 'I am the true vine'. Our very existence depends upon the one who is the vine where our source of nourishment comes from, the one who is himself life and light.
Jesus also said that we were the branches and I saw just how we needed to be nourished from the vine so that we as the branches could nourish others. Others that we speak to about the gospel, others that we help in time of need, others that need the Lord Jesus Christ in their life.
Like those leaves we need to be holding on to Jesus for all we are worth, whether we are going through the valleys or whether we are on the mountain top. We need to be walking so close to our Lord that despite the conditions of our life we know he will see us through. He will feed us, nourish us, give us courage to overcome difficulties, strengthen us for the next leg of the journey and give us joy to sing His praises. He really is our life and no matter what we face in this life, Jesus has said 'I will never leave thee, nor forsake thee (Heb 13:5).
It may be that outside the snow is falling and the temperature has dropped but in the warmth of his love there is no cold at all, so stay close and 'hold on for all you are worth'.

The earth is the Lords

Ps 24 - The earth is the Lord's and the fullness thereof: the world, and they that dwell therein.

A passage of scripture I so easily forget. I know I am a child of God because of my salvation but this verse is telling me the whole world is the Lords.

Not just the creature comforts of lush greenery, blue skies, turquoise seas, food in the fields but those who dwell there and that means me and you - everyone in the world. We are the Lords - and what a wonderful place it would be if everyone took that on board. If everyone looked at scripture and saw the goodness and mercy of God.
We were made in his image, to have fellowship with him but sin entered the world, man became disobedient and so it goes on today. Oh that men would look to the Lord, He that came down and dwelt among us; He that was obedient while here on earth, obedient even to death on the cross; Making a way for man to draw closer to his maker and fellowship once more with him. Who shall ascend into the hill of the Lord? or who shall stand in his holy place? David asks;

He that has repented of sin and accepted the Lord Jesus Christ, who now can stand with clean hands and a pure heart before the throne of God, clothed in the righteousness of the our great and wonderful Saviour Jesus Christ.
Psalm 24: The earth is the Lord's and the fulness thereof: the world and they that dwell therein.
For he hath founded it upon the seas, and established it upon the floods.
Who shall ascend into the hill of the Lord? or who shall stand in his holy place?
He that hath clean hands, and a pure heart; who hath not lifted up his soul unto vanity, nor sworn deceitfully.
He shall receive the blessing from the Lord, and righteousness from the God of his salvation.
This is the generation of them that seek him, that seek thy face, O Jacob Selah.
Lift up your heads, O ye gates, and be ye lift up, ye everlasting door: and the King of glory shall come in.
Who is this King of glory? The Lord strong and mighty, the Lord mighty in battle.
Lift up your heads O ye gates; even lift them up ye everlasting doors; and the King of glory shall come in,
Who is this King of glory? The Lord of hosts, he is the King of glory. Selah.

Break up the fallow ground


(These picture may give you an idea of the fallow field I'm talking about - I took it on my mobile phone so it doesn't do it justice)







Sow to yourselves in righteousness, reap in mercy; break up your fallow ground: for it is time to seek the LORD, till he come and rain righteousness upon you Hos. 10:12





For thus saith the LORD to the men of Judah and Jerusalem, Break up your fallow ground, and sow not among thorns. Jer. 4:3

I am sure many sermons have been written about the fallow ground and I know the Lord spoke to me early in my Christian life about breaking up the fallow ground but it was only this last week that I have seen this verse in a new light.
I have a little studio at our local craft centre, which is on a working farm. Last week I was amazed to see a field that had once been full of beautiful yellow rape seed flowers now full of weeds and thistles. It hadn't dawned on me at the time but I got talking to one of the girls and she mentioned the field was lying fallow. I don't ever recall seeing a field lie fallow before and as I looked I could see these really horrible black weeds, and I mean really black, just dotted about the field. I couldn't quite make out what they were but the very blackness of them really had an impact on me. Somehow I seemed to be reminded of the blackness of sin and saw just how black sin is to God.
In all of my Christian life I don't think that I have ever seen such blackness in nature but whatever these weed type plants were they had been left to be part of this fallow ground.

Looking at this field let me see again how we need to break up the fallow ground in our own lives, we need to get rid of the blackness of any type of sin that may enter our lives and even as Christians we can so often allow sin to creep in.

We really do have a need to break up any fallow ground in our own lives, any sin that has not been dealt with, any harsh words that have been spoken in anger. I've been guilty at times of speaking harsh words to someone, but you know harsh words can be like an infection; it hurts and digs deep and can spread in that persons life causing them to be harsh to someone else.

Have you ever been stung brushing against a thistle. I have - it hurts like crazy, the tiny little barbed bristles give a nasty sting that stays for ages - and isn't that what it's like if we speak harshly to someone or if we speak with a barbed tongue. Proverbs 15:4 says A wholesome tongue is a tree of life: but perverseness therein is a breach in the spirit.
Proverbs 16:24 Pleasant words are as an honeycomb, sweet to the soul and health to the bones.

The land was allowed to lie fallow so that it would be more fruitful and the farmer would then break up the fallow ground clearing the fields of the weeds and thistles in order to sow good seed.

Shouldn't we do the same, shouldn't we break up the fallow ground - clearing out the bad habits in our own lives, the faults that go unconfessed; the harsh words that have been spoken and can't be taken back but we can be sorry they were ever said in the first place; - that we may be prepared for the seed of rightousness to be sown - the good seed of the word will then be sown and be allowed to grow and bear fruit.

I know I don't want the blackness of any sin in my life and I am so thankful that daily I can take all of my faults to the Lord knowing that he is faithful and just to forgive me and that he will continue to work in my life helping me to break up the fallow ground until the day comes when I stand before him.

The LORD is my Rock


Marsden Rock is an imposing sea stack of magnesium limestone which lies approx 100 yards off the mainland of South Shields in the North of England. It was always an awesome sight to behold and as I grew up in one of the nearby towns I used to love spending time there at the beach. It almost seemed that nothing would be able to knock this great rock down.
Marsden Rock has been standing for over 200 years although quite different today from the time in 1830 that a flight of steps was constructed up the side of the rock. It was climbed by that method many times and in 1903 several choirs performed a choral service on top of the rock. In 1911 a huge section of the rock collapsed and it was feared the entire rock would fall into the sea.
In 1996 the top section of the arch of the Rock collapsed splitting the rock into two and in 1997 it was deemed the smaller stack was unstable so on 26th March a controlled explosion reduced, in a matter of seconds, the small stack into a pile of rubble. The remainder of the rock still stands today although over time it will continue to erode and will perhaps one day be claimed by the sea.

The Rock of Gibralta - a peninsula rock fortress at the western exit from the mediterranean. It is connected with the Spanish mainland by a sandy flat, less than 10ft above sea level.

The rock rises abruptly to 1,356 ft and runs a little west of south for two and a half miles. What an impressive Rock this is too. I visited Gibralta when I was on holiday in Spain quite a number of years ago and to think that I was walking around on a piece of rock was amazing and people lived on it too.
As I read my bible I came across the following verses:

2 Sam 22:2-3
And he said "The LORD is my rock, and my fortress, and my deliverer;
The God of my rock; in him will I trust: he is my shield, and the horn of my salvation, my high tower, and my refuge, my saviour; thou savest me from violence.

vs 31 - As for God, his way is perfect; the word of the LORD is tried: he is a buckler to all them that trust in him.
For who is God, save the LORD? and who is a rock save our God?

vs 47 - The LORD liveth; and blessed be my rock; and exalted be the God of the rock of my salvation.

Psalm 31:3 - For thou art my rock and my fortress; therefore for thy names sake lead me and guide me.
Psalm 71:3 Be thou my strong habitation whereunto I may continually resort: thou hast given commandment to save me; for thou art my rock and my fortress

Psalm 18:2
The LORD is my rock and my fortress and my deliverer: my God, my strength, in whom I will trust; my buckler and the horn of my salvation.

vs 31 - For who is God save the LORD? or who is a rock save our God?

vs 46 - The LORD liveth; and blessed be my rock; and let the God of my salvation be exalted.

1 Cor 10: 4
And did all drink the same spiritual drink: for they drank of that spiritual Rock that followed them: and that Rock was Christ.

When something is said more than once in the Bible then we can be sure God wants us to LISTEN!
Marsden Rock and the Rock of Gibralter may be impressive sights, they may be eroding, may, by man's hand, be made to topple and fall but of one thing I am sure, my Saviour Jesus Christ, is the one sure Rock which will never fall, or erode.
The Lord Jesus Christ is the very Rock on which the church is built, the very foundation of our faith. We need never fear that this Rock will fall, we need only put our trust in Him. He alone is the Rock which will stand forever.














Go To The Ant


Prov 6:6-8
Go to the ant, thou sluggard; consider her ways, and be wise:
Which having no guide, overseer or ruler,
Provideth her meat in the summer, and gathereth her food in the harvest.

Quite a long time ago I had been asked to share some thoughts at a house group we had. I had prayed for days wondering what I could share and nothing came. On the day we were meeting I sat and watched hundreds of ants marching along the floor by my fireplace. Despite hating these little creatures, I find them quite fascinating and watched them for ages before deciding I had to get rid of them before they over ran the house and the only way to get rid of them was to put down some nippon gel. I watched them for quite some time and as I did the Lord gave me some lessons in Christian living which I was able to share with the house group.
The nippon I'd put down to clear them obviously looked good to the ants, or rather smelled good. It probably tasted good too but it was poisonous and sadly in the eating of it was leading them to death. This spoke to me of the food we take in and I thought "Am I feeding on the right food, will it sustain and keep me". If we're not feeding on the manna from heaven, upon Jesus who is the bread of life, then we're not getting the right food.
"Will it sustain me" - this reminded me of a cartoon I'd seen about an ant and a grasshopper. When summer came the grass-hopper spent his days having a ball, socialising, going to dances and he took no thought for the lean time to come, despite the advice of the ant - who collected his food during the summer months. He spent his time working and keeping busy and when the lean winter months came he had food to sustain him. I think the grass hopper died - No, the ant shared his food with the grasshopper. But this spoke to me of our need to store up food. The word of God is our meat and we need to store up scripture in our hearts to be ready for any troubles or lean times that come along.
When I put the nippon down hundreds of ants followed along the line of the fireplace, a sharp turn to the right and there they were, right beside this lovely sticky stuff that looked and tasted sweet. It was an easy path. A couple of them, however, took a different road. They came along the fire place, turned left through a dark passage, up a brick wall to the shelf and off they went in search of food. This reminded me of the broad and narrow path. The way might be arduous, extremely rough and it might be that we have to go through dark areas but Jesus said, this was the narrow way and it lead to life.
In July/August time the ant takes to the air and mates on the wing. The queen or mother ant then starts a new colony. Her offspring, her family, then help her in whatever needs doing to keep the family together. We too should work to keep the family together, whether at home or church. The family is often the hardest place to witness if someone, a husband, wife or child is not a believer, but we should never give up. Things may seem impossible to us but with God all things are possible.
I read that the ant is much influenced by the sun. If it is lost or held captive by something it will eventually make an angle with its original course, where the rays of the sun passed through. So too like us, we need to go to the light of the world. We also need to let others see the light of Jesus in us. Luke 11:33 says: No man when he hath lighted a candle, putteth it in a secret place, neither under a bushel, but on a candlestick that they which come in may see the light.
The ant, says the Bible, has no guide, or overseer or rule,r but we have. Jesus is our overseer, our ruler. The Holy Spirit is our guide. How much more wiser then than the ant should we be - in what we take in, in what we do and say. We have someone to lead and guide us yet we have so many problems and burdens that we try to face on our own.
The ants have no one yet they know how to stick together, they share and care for each other.
I watched ants from my window once, they made a line along the window ledge and appeared to be carrying one of the ants along, perhaps a baby or older ant, one that was hurt or sick (someone did tell me that they were probably taking it for food if it was dead but I liked my version best).
The ants are a people not strong yet they prepare their food in the summer. I don't think this means strong in the sense that we may think. They are very small and can be flattened quite easily - but they are persistant and we should be too - persistent in prayer. Prayer is our life line and I am constantly reminded of my need to pray, to talk with the Lord and spend time with Him.
It may just mean that size and strength are not important but the ants are prepared to collect their food, are organised in their affairs and so too should we be. Prepared to follow Jesus wherever He leads.
We can learn a lot from the ants and from other creatures our Lord has made but most of all we learn from Jesus himself. He still has a lot to teach us. If we let him fill us with the Holy Spirit then we will be equipped to do the work Jesus wants us to do.
The ants give 100% of themselves. Let us give 100% for Jesus - He deserves nothing less.
Posted by Jean of Honeycombs

Friday, 1 June 2012

Just lately I am seeing how much women really do matter in the kingdom of God. Especially women in prayer.
We have a monthly prayer meeting at church but just lately the Lord is impressing on me more and more the power of prayer. Two of us women decided we would get together and pray and we'd do it regularly the second week after the church prayer meeting. 
Well we had a situation that was in urgent need of prayer and were joined by another woman so our two became three.  We prayed solely about this one situation and had wonderful answer to our prayer within weeks.
We have continued meeting together and praying and now we are four. 
Last Monday's prayer time was remarkable and we spoke to the Lord about a few things but the main one being a lady who had come to drop her children off at the church youth club.  She isn't a Christian but told us she had been to see someone who did Reiki as she was feeling down. She was told she had a black cloud hanging over her and that she should go back to have some healing done with crystals.  She was really concerned about this blackness over her and we spoke to her about Jesus and said that we looked to him as our healer.  She was really open and asked a few questions. We told her we would pray and that if she wanted to talk some more then to ring one of us.  She did - I had a text from R to say she has made contact and they were meeting up on 13th.  We will continue to pray for V that the Lord will do a remarkable thing in her life.

In the bible there is a lot on praying and Christians do pray in many different ways.  I am always struck by the phrase 'pray without ceasing'   and  have often wondered what it means to 'pray without ceasing' for we cannot pray every single minute of every single day.  This morning I thought of the word 'cease' which means to stop to end,  and it came to me that maybe pray without ceasing just means don't stop, don't let the prayer end. 
I was reminded of the widow in Luke 18:1-8

And he spake a parable unto them to this end, that men ought always to pray, and not to faint;
Saying, There was in a city a judge, which feared not God, neither regarded man:
And there was a widow in that city; and she came unto him, saying, Avenge me of mine adversary.
And he would not for a while: but afterward he said within himself, Though I fear not God, nor regard man;
Yet because this widow troubleth me, I will avenge her, lest by her continual coming she weary me.
And the Lord said, Hear what the unjust judge saith.
And shall not God avenge his own elect, which cry day and night unto him, though he bear long with them?
I tell you that he will avenge them speedily. Nevertheless when the Son of man cometh, shall he find faith on the earth?

This judge was fearful that the widow would be persistant and unceasing in her coming to him to ask him to avenge her of her adversary.  He didn't even fear God but listened and did that which she asked.
 
How much more will the Lord listen to us and answer our prayer if we are unceasing in our asking. If we ask until we have an answer.   Sometimes prayer is more than just 'Lord do this for us' and then go on to something else. We need to be sincere if we are to pray for others salvation or others healing, in fact whatever we pray about.  We need to come humbly before the Lord, seeking his will and asking in faith believing.

I am glad there are 4 of us women now praying together and I am praying more will join us and .... Matthew 18:19
 
Again I say unto you, That if two of you shall agree on earth as touching any thing that they shall ask, it shall be done for them of my Father which is in heaven. For where two or three are gathered together in my name, there am I in the midst of them.