“I will restore or replace for you” says the Lord, “the years that the locust has eaten… the hopping locust, the stripping locust, and the crawling locust, My great army which I sent among you. And you shall eat in plenty and be satisfied and praise the name of the Lord, your God, Who has dealt wondrously with you. And My people shall never be put to shame. And you shall know, understand, and realize that I am in the midst of Israel and that I the Lord am your God and there is none else. My people shall never be put to shame.” (Joel 2:25-27)
“Salvation is found in no one else, for there is no other name under heaven given to mankind by which we must be saved.” (Acts 4:12)
Although the past is irreversible and overwhelming at times… God is the restorer of broken dreams and shattered lives! He has declared a New Day available for all of humanity! God has laid a foundation of hope in Christ – He is saying we can be a new creation (2 Cor. 5:17)… and our old ways can be in the past! There is a new beginning waiting for us, filled with new chances, new opportunities and new expectations (Isa. 43:18-21). God will wipe away our rotten past and restore that which was lost, stolen or destroyed by sin, brokenness or the devil.
Restoration begins by Believing!
As the Savior of mankind, the Lord Jesus Christ has done all to rescue us from the things that diminish or destroy us. If we can but believe – hope opens the door! There is a restoration coming into our spirits, minds, bodies, relationships, and other aspects of our humanity. Believers can be delivered from oppression (Acts 10:38) and rest in the safety that effects spiritual, emotional, and physical well-being (Mt. 11:28-30).
Come, you weary, broken and lost and find a place of safety in His loving care for you.
Hope is a Destination!
Run into the arms of your Father in the Spirit! There you will have plenty and be complete, satisfied and whole. He wants you to know the truth and the freedom of walking in His Presence! It is His joy to reveal His heart toward you! He is a Father… like no other. He will not allow His people to be orphans or feel ashamed anymore. This is a profound truth that no one else can claim.
Let Him speak into your heart today… “I the Lord am your God and there is no one else!”
“Therefore I exhort first of all that supplications, prayers, intercessions, and giving of thanks be made for all men, for kings and all who are in authority, that we may lead a quiet and peaceable life in all godliness and reverence. For this is good and acceptable in the sight of God our Savior, who desires all men to be saved and to come to the knowledge of the truth.” (1 Tim. 2:1-4)
If we want to cooperate with God for Kingdom Advancement on earth, we need to recognize the key role prayer has for success. Not only is the effectual fervent prayer of a righteous man effective to bring about great breakthrough, but there is a life sustaining flow of grace released in simple fellowship with God. Prayer matters… it changes the atmosphere and releases Kingdom power… it unlocks revelation and sets fresh hope for the future… it challenges history and influences culture… it binds and looses, aligns and divides… but best of all prayer moves those things that concern us into the hands of the One who loves best and knows the most.
In Our Lord’s model prayer, Jesus says: “In this manner, therefore, pray: Our Father in heaven, hallowed be Your Name. Your Kingdom come. Your will be done, on earth as it is in heaven.” (Mt. 6:9-10). We must assume this was meant as an assignment, not just a suggested format. Our assignment from God is to pray without ceasing!
Prayer Ignites Vision:
It is prayer that fuels the fire of God’s manifest glory in the earth. Prayer does what nothing else can, it ignites the vision inside of us. It is through prayer that we experience divine intervention into human affairs. It is by believing prayer that mountains are moved, sinners saved, the sick are healed, and revival fires are rekindled. It is also by prayer that the human heart is transformed. Prayer is a must if we want to move beyond the realm of human strength and initiative into the realm of the supernatural power and blessing of God. Jesus Christ as King of Kings and Lord of Lords, has made us Ambassadors of His Kingdom. Prayer is our assignment and our strategy!
Our King – Jesus desires to rule through us. He desires to grant apostolic authority to His Church. He wants to extend His scepter of righteousness through us (Ps. 110:1-2). That scepter is bestowed and utilized as we take up the ministry of prayer and intercession. Our role is to bring His enemies to their knees, so they become His footstool. Through the authority of righteousness and effectual fervent prayer, we will see an advancement of His reign in the earth. There is clearly a vision that is ”the fullness of Him who fills all in all” (Eph. 1:23). Prayer puts Christ at the center of all that concerns us. Just the thought of a truly empowered Church makes demons nervous and darkness want to flee at the sound of His Name.
Even In The Age Of Terror, Perfect Love Casts Out All Fear!
Based on what’s being broadcast on television and social media, people are unsettled. Many envision atrocities that could afflict our families and unravel our quiet neighborhoods. Increasing unrest and suspicion grips the lives of multitudes. I understand why. We live in an ever-plugged-in world of instant information and engagement. Every unfolding tragedy and crisis is presented to us in visceral video and sound bites. What once seemed far away, appears closer than ever.
I understand that being mindful of the world around us is essential. More importantly, as believers, we are called to carry the burdens of others and intercede for peace on the earth. No one who loves Jesus is given the freedom to disengage and ignore evil.
A line that cannot be crossed… Its not God that has unleashed the fear!
- “For God has not given us a spirit of fear, but of power and of love and of a sound mind.” (2 Tim. 1:7)
Believers don’t have the privilege of embracing fear. Whenever we are anxious or overwhelmed with fear, our identity and sense of calling gets shaken. Christians simply cannot be world-changers if we are paralyzed by the fear of violence! It may seem unnatural, but there should be an overwhelming freedom and joy – not trepidation. We should not be anxious about anything, because we are carriers of love, power and soundness of mind. The trajectory of our lives should be shaped by the Presence of Our God… not politics! Those who love Jesus should not fear man or be hesitant about where they stand… even as they take their final breath.
The Perfect Love of God – Releases Peace!
Even if a horrific event were to transpire, solace should be found in walking in the perfect love of Jesus. The Apostle John had the following to say about all this, “Perfect love casts out all fear. If we are afraid, it is for fear of punishment, and this shows that we have not fully experienced His perfect love” (1 Jn. 4:18). Genuine citizens of the Kingdom should be filled with love and power… never anxious about heaven or earth. Whether we live or whether we die, we’re at peace. It’s impossible to stop those who know the perfect love of God! Not even death can keep them from their destiny.
In an evil age… Believers see their Almighty God, with a Significant Plan!
“He shall come down like rain upon the grass before mowing, like showers that water the earth.” (Psalm 72:6)
It is the cry of my heart… “Holy Spirit – send us the rain!” We are after Your refreshing! Your going forth is established as the morning… and we have awakened to the sound of Your Presence! Yes, Lord come to us as the rain! We are longing to see, waiting to know, postured to receive the abundance of Your resource. Like the sweet spring rains that fall on the meadow. Like the swift delouse that washes the atmosphere. We long for the great outpourings and the gentle drizzles alike. Its all about Your Glory, that we might experience Your heart.
A Life Source:
Rain has such a powerful influence on that which it touches. We can visually see its dual implication. First as refreshing – where there has been dryness and barrenness (Joel 2:23-29). Second, as restoration – where there has been loss (Isa. 28:11-12). Rain comes to replenish and renew everything it touches. Its longed for and anticipated, because its a life source that carries the earth into new seasons. Did you catch that… Rain initiates new seasons of life in the earth!
New Seasons of Fruitfulness:
The ”outpouring” Peter and the 120 disciples experienced at Pentecost (Acts 2:17) was not some abstract concept; it was the birth of a New Day! This was the literal evidence of “latter rain” that brought about a harvest and watered the earth for fruitful seasons. The Lord is saying to the thirsty that He will send rain! He will come like the rain to fields… to people that are totally barren as a promise of revival.
Needing to be refreshed doesn’t mean that we are lost or backslidden or that we have broken our fellowship in some way. When the lawn endures a hot season, it dries up and needs to be refreshed – only rain can truly nurture its recovery. In the day of natural drought, the earth cries out silently to be restored. When there is drought and barrenness of soul or when the evidence of weariness takes hold, it is with great anticipation that we cry out for the early and latter rains of heaven. There is no greater sight to the weary ones than the gift of refreshing… the rain of heaven!
Its the Resource of God in the Promised Land:
“For the land which you go to possess is not like the land of Egypt from which you have come, where you sowed your seed and watered it by foot, as a vegetable garden; but the land which you cross over to possess is a land of hills and valleys, which drinks water from the rain of heaven, a land for which the Lord your God cares; the eyes of the Lord your God are always on it, from the beginning of the year to the very end of the year. And it shall be that if you earnestly obey My commandments which I command you today, to love the Lord your God and serve Him with all your heart and with all your soul, then I will give you the rain for your land in its season, the early rain and the latter rain, that you may gather in your grain, your new wine, and your oil. And I will send grass in your fields for your livestock, that you may eat and be filled.” (Deut. 11:10-15)
“Holy Spirit – Send the rain!”
This morning I spoke to the leaders about “keys”... keys to unlocking gates, offer access and loose the heavens!
Once God opens the heavens, there is wonderful Kingdom influence. There will be “arguments” that Satan has set up to keep you from moving forward. One example is forgiveness. Forgiving someone opens up many doors, its a key to the Kingdom of Heaven! But there will be arguments in your mind… “why should I forgive? That person does not deserve forgiveness?” So once you go through a door God has opened, be very aware of the arguments, the enemy will set up. Your freedom is just beyond the threshold where Christ has made a way for you to break into new territory.
A Season in Kenya where the heavens were loosed!
There had been awesome times of worship in the morning where I could “see” the heavens open… the veil was thin and our hearts abiding in the glory of God. So many had been to the altar weeping and receiving healing for their heart. And I was calling the pastors and leadership forward to share testimonies of the great things God was doing. I still remember one African pastor’s testimony as to what he could “see” in the spiritual realm. He got up and said that he saw “heaven shaking things all over the earth”.
“Therefore since we are receiving a kingdom which cannot be shaken, let us have grace, by which we may serve God acceptably with reverence and godly fear. For our God is a consuming fire.” (Hebrews 12:28)
One pastor calls me “the man who brings rain”- wafula – in Swahili. This is because the day I arrived in Kenya it began to rain. The interesting thing is that it only rains during the morning, and afternoon… and stops for the evening crusades. God is so good, when the heavens are open. As soon as everyone is packed up and leaving, the rain comes again!! Strange things happen when you hold the keys of the Kingdom of Heaven in your hands. Thank you Lord for the “former and the latter rain”.
I recall an evening meeting that brought in another 400 people, so there were about 1000 men, women and children crowded around the small platform… another 800 along the shops and toward the back of the meeting place (the African village courtyard). There was so much mud due to all the rain!! I spoke of God’s desire to set them completely free… that freedom was the reward of our surrendered lives in Christ! This same Jesus, who brought freedom to the oppressed came to break off chains and any bondage of the enemy. It was the story of Paul and Silas… angels opening the door of their prison cell… and how praise gets God’s ear every time. Breakthrough came like a rushing river. Praise broke out and many experienced the touch of heaven as the Holy Spirit moved in their midst. Signs and wonders were easy and many found themselves healed and saved in those precious moments.
I remember calling up the musicians and telling them “it’s times to dance, and give God something to inhabit”. The children immediately began to dance and then dancing broke out everywhere. As we quieted everyone down and began call people forward to receive the joy that only Jesus can bring… at least 150 more people ran forward to receive Christ. After that they all began to dance once more!!