Negative Words of Hope

Maybe you have looked at your life lately and noticed that all your pillars seem to be falling apart. Sometimes its NOT about preparing your ground for a ripe harvest and beautiful new season. Sometimes, you need to make peace with God, who is as Terrible as He is Merciful. I learnt the following today, with a heart that trembled at His Words as I journey through the book of Ezekiel (25 & 26). I hope you read with a listening, and submissive heart…towards God.
If you,
1. have been privileged at one time or other, to be within an intimate circle of trust or vision with a child of God whether as a family, friend, colleague, fellow minister and pilgrim, media consumer and…
2. felt satisfied with the destruction of a called one, or nation, or tribe who had rebelled against God “… Because you said, ‘Aha!’ against My sanctuary when it was profaned, and against the land of Israel when it was desolate,”
3. Rejoiced gleefully when you witnessed God’s dealing with one of His own in judgement, to despise them… “Because you clapped your hands, stamped your feet, and rejoiced in heart with all your disdain for the land of Israel.”
4. Made nonsense of God’s election of a particular person on group of people during the time of their distress, to pronounce them as common, not really special etc ““Because Moab and Seir say, ‘Look! The house of Judah is like all the nations,”
5. took advantage of a person’s or group of person’s distress when God’s favor seemed to desert them, to avenge yourself of real or imagined/fabricated wrongdoing at this time, i.e. kicking them while they were down. You believed them hated and unprotected of God because of their predicament in the land and added to their pain due to your previous disapproval of them…”Because of what Edom did against the house of Judah by taking vengeance, and has greatly offended by avenging itself on them…Because the Philistines dealt vengefully and took vengeance with a spiteful heart, to destroy because of the old hatred,”
You need to seriously consider making peace with God. When a loving parent disciplines their child to draw them back to himself or herself, there is appropriate response by witnesses, and this never includes, picking up crude artillery against them, trying to fan the parent’s anger, trying to convince the child that their parent no longer loves them and they are strangers to them, or even stomping them down with your heavy duty boots to rid the parent of their obvious disappointment at their child. If you do these…it is against you the parent will unleash His anger…without leaving their child un-taught. God is not dysfunctional as God, Father, Leader, and in all His Sovereignty. You need to make peace with God…believe Him to be The Best Parent you have ever had the privilege of coming across…There is yet another group that God’s Hand is Targeting
6. If you have ever seen the destruction of someone else, a nation, organisation, business, ministry, marriage, family, friendship, as an opportunity to exalt yourself into a place of privilege, especially when these were ordained and established in God, for you there will be a special hell on earth. People will come from high places to tremble at your own descent for it will be obvious that God has dealt Himself against you. Ezekiel 26 “…because Tyre has said against Jerusalem, ‘Aha! She is broken who was the gateway of the peoples; now she is turned over to me; I shall be filled; she is laid waste.”
God’s paternity is not seasonal…let us return to Him to request that He amputates, and delivers us of that stubborn limb in us that perpetually seeks and rejoices in the shaming and destruction of others…or else…you will know Him as God, as you feel His Hand turned against you.
#NegativeWordsOfHope
#Ezekiel25
#Ezekiel26
#AncientWordsEverTrue
#GodsEternalCommitementToHisOwn
#AppropriateNeighborliness
vipslit@yahoo.ca
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Why Even Pray for Them?

There are many reasons to STOP PRAYING for them, genuine, just reasons. Ones that anyone would understand. Primarily, they don’t really think that its useful…and besides, why would Almighty God even stop to listen to someone of whom they think so little, as they do you? I mean, they have it more together. What could you possibly have to tell God on their behalf, that they would not do better on their own – or at least someone else they think is more suitable? They may cause you great harm even to stop you from praying…and gather enough around them to make them feel right about doing so.

God has given me many reasons why I should CONTINUE PRAYING for them. Its not for their applause really…never has been about that. But more about His intent…His True Heart…”For God did not send His Son into the world to condemn the world, but that the world through Him might be saved.” John 3:17 NKJV and “The Lord does not delay [as though He were unable to act] and is not slow about His promise, as some count slowness, but is [extraordinarily] patient toward you, not wishing for any to perish but for all to come to repentance.” 2 Peter 2:9 AMP. It got me thinking, that when I want anything else for someone God created, am desiring contrary to Him…and what does that make me if not an anti-Christ? Hmmm

So this morning He gave me, reminded me, of one more reason to pray for…my family, my friends,, my neighbors, my country, my world, my employer, my colleagues, and yes, even the ones who hate me so much, they would not want me mentioning their names lovingly before God. If I don’t, if I am the only one able to, or even willing to and I don’t, and anything happens to them that could have been prevented by my praying…heavy responsibility…but in His own words…” “I looked for someone to stand up for Me against all this, to repair the defenses of the city, to take a stand for Me and stand in the gap to protect this land so I wouldn’t have to destroy it. I couldn’t find anyone. Not one. So I’ll empty out My wrath on them, burn them to a crisp with My hot anger, serve them with the consequences of all they’ve done. Decree of God, the Master.”
Ezekiel 22:31-32 The Message (MSG)

vipslit@yahoo.ca

Broken Heel Days

Sometimes, the devil throws stuff at you, but God allows you to walk on through to a lovely day. It may be a puncture, a broken heart, a betrayal or two by a friend, financial challenges, an illness, ministry, or work challenges, an eviction, a death – varying degrees of pain and discomfort; it does not have to be fixed the way you desire it to be. But you run to Him, cling on Him, realizing your need of Him…keep your toes and heels level as best as you can, your hand in His and keep walking. Its not yet over, until God says it is.

A broken heel, should never prevent you from getting home…and when you do, in spite of it, you realize that those broken heel days, are actually miracles in the making. I did.IMG_20160811_122029

`Thus says The LORD to Cyrus His anointed, Whom I have taken by the right hand, To subdue nations before him And to loose the loins of kings; To open doors before him so that gates will not be shut: “I will go before you and make the rough places smooth; I will shatter the doors of bronze and cut through their iron bars. “I will give you the treasures of darkness And hidden wealth of secret places, So that you may know that it is I, The LORD, the God of Israel, who calls you by your name.`
Isaiah 45:1-3

LESSONS FROM THE LABOR WARD

I spent last night and early this morning at a labor ward with a close friend whose husband was away on a trip. The labor ward has a lot of lessons for those who wait in prayer in The LORD.

I learnt that because you get in first, does not mean that you get out first or at all, or even get blessed first. Sometimes, one looses their expectation at this crucial time.

I learnt that, in the labor ward, modesty of dress and manner is really not priority. The less you have on, the easier it is to remove, the better you will be attended to. Ignore those that mock you in your birthing hour…they are the ones who are inappropriate.

I learnt that when you pray for release, and the pain seems to increase, and your groans seem to choke up your prayers, God is still in charge, and at His exact timing, He answers your prayer according to His Will.

I learnt that sometimes the more human assistance you require and receive at this crucial place of birthing, the longer it takes you to heal from the trauma of it all.

I learnt that when you hold the answer to your prayers in your arms, it is often very difficult to remember what you just went through, and if you focus on the past, it keeps you from enjoying and worshiping God for the breakthrough you have received.

I learnt that something you go through may be potentially fatal, but does no harm to you or your blessing – but one may be harmed in seeming safety.

I learnt that you may be in the same situation with another in the ward, even groan at the very same time, but that even when someone is there to hold you, the pain still is very personal…and cannot be numbed simply by being in like company.

I learnt, that God raises who He Wills to intercede for your birthing experience, that others may want to be there for you, but are kept out because He is The Writer of your story.

I learnt that the intercessor will notice others that suffer like you, but because they are called to stand with you, they can not stand with the others there too. Not in the way they are with you anyway.

I learnt that you may know its time, the intercessor may know its time, but it is God who moves the mountains to work in agreement with His timing for you. You cannot make it happen, because though there for you, there are not really there for you…but for themselves.

I learnt that in labor ward, it helps to focus on the task of birthing. Just that.

I am grateful that God raised me, and strengthened me and moved me to be in a place of His revelation, then rested me afterwards.

To Climb a Tree

WHAT MADE A RICH AND POWERFUL MAN CLIMB A TREE:
I got thinking today, seeing in my mind the rich and powerful people I know, have heard of or seen from a distance, and imagined them, one by one, hoisting themselves up a tree for a better few of…okay, think of the ones you know, unless they are actors or environmentalists, what would they be doing up there? It would be more plausible for them to shove their way to the front, or get their security to do it for them so that they would get a better view. And then I thought of a group of rich and/or powerful men all trying to get a glimpse of the same thing, live. That would be even worse…a cloud of security would probably make it impossible for their bosses to get a glimpse.
Short Zacchaeus was in such a situation. He was rich, he was powerful, but the pharisees and the disciples seemed more fitted for a close up with Jesus Christ. This was not his crowd, and it was likely that they would not hesitate to remind him of the fact. Among this sort, his position was despicable…because you see, they thought they knew him well. The source of his wealth was, fishy, so they felt it was their duty to protect God and heaven from the likes of him. Even without knowing they were doing it. But this did not numb his keen hunger, to see Christ, and say to Him what only He could hear, understand, appreciate and mitigate.
So he did something that could mostly be associated with a child, or someone who life had drained of anything they could loose. He was both. And because the Kingdom of Heaven belonged to such as he, The LORD of Heaven, ‘heard’ his faith, his hunger, and saw him shed all, that he might have a glimpse of Him. And Jesus, spoke above the cloud that hindered Him from getting to Him, and then drew Him forth that they might fellowship together.
BELOVED, SO ‘THEY’ ARE IN THE WAY, BLOCKING YOU FROM SEEING THE LOVE OF YOUR LIFE – THE LOVE OF ALL AGES. DO SOMETHING THEIR POMP AND POWER WOULD KEEP THEM FROM DOING, SOMETHING POWERFULLY CHILDLIKE, ENOUGH TO GIVE YOU A VIEW OF HIM. ‘THEY’ MAY DESPISE YOUR FAITH IN ACTION, BUT THAT HAS NEVER MATTERED, WHAT MATTERS IS THAT YOU DRAW THE APPROVAL OF THE ONE WHO MADE THEM AND YOU. [thoughts on Luke 19:1-10]
“let the LITTLE children come to Me, and do not hinder them, for the Kingdom of God belongs to such as these. I tell you the truth, ANYONE who WILL NOT receive The Kingdom of God like a LITTLE CHILD will NEVER enter it.” Luke 18:15-17
vipslit@yahoo.ca

Travelling A Cut Away From the Norm

This morning, I was trying to get from one end of Nairobi, to another, using a short-cut – which sometimes, as in this case, refers to an un-finished road branching away from the main tarmac road that presumably has all the traffic. I noticed that the car in front of us had sped on and we kept catching up with the dust it left in its wake. I could not see the one behind me, but one must have been there, at a distant, catching up with ‘our’ dust. And then there were the vehicles on the opposite lane…with their dust. Most times, from my vantage point on the back seat, I could not see the way ahead. The driver was calm, I was not. He gently reassured me that nothing bad would happen to us, that was not meant to happen, as he could see the road ahead.

It struck me then, that life’s like that. Especially when you take the road less traveled; there is usually someone who did it before, and sometimes…they blow ‘dust’ on your face. Then there are those who are travelling the opposite direction – these also affect your progress, by the amount of dust they may blow on your line of vision. It all depends on WHO is behind the wheel of your life, how well they know the road you are on, and your comfort at any one time on your ability to trust them to get you ‘there’ safely.

Like Job of old I declare today, that “But He knows the way that I take [He has concern for it, appreciates, and pays attention to it]. When He has tried me, I shall come forth as refined gold [pure and luminous]. My foot has held fast to His steps; His ways have I kept and not turned aside.” 23:10-11

and I adopted Carrie Underwood’s prayer ” Jesus, take the wheel
Take it from my hands
‘Cause I can’t do this on my own
I’m letting go
So give me one more chance
Just save me from this road I’m on
Jesus, take the wheel”

vipslit@yahoo.ca

One Day….

 DSC08481

It had been a hard day. I had been to a service in my old church. A funeral service. That was hard.

I looked around and recognised familiar, much loved faces. Some pointedly ignored me. I mused about that for about two seconds and then the business that had brought me here, took over. To stand with a friend who had been widowed. There were many people around; I was grateful to God that she had these. But I took my place on my knees as it were, though still seated and prayed. It was a hard service. Beautiful for all the love that was shared…and yet really hard. But that is not what this day was for me.

This day, was not a particular 24 hour circuit, but something that had weighed me down for a while. Something only this place could bring out for me. I sat next to my sweetheart, and it was not difficult to see, how shabby we were compared to everyone else. When time came to give, and we were urged to give generously, he took out a 200 shilling note, and held it openly. I knew how much he had in his pocket. And it was not a whole lot more. I whispered to him that it was not proper for anyone to see what we were giving. And he bundled our note in his hand, and then when the basket passed in front of him, he put in the note. I noticed that his laces were too short and kept coming undone, his socks sagging and loud, and that my own shoes were peeling and a little bit muddy at the heel. Thought about it for a second, and then went back into the reason I was there.

After the service, we were to line up to view the body and condole with the family. The line was long so we, my sweetheart and I stood aside for a while, then he melted away. I went to the couple who had been our ride from home and thanked the husband, saying we would find our way home. I was already feeling faint. He smiled and said it was okay. Then I decided to walk over to the other side of the line, and say hello to some old and much loved friends. I was well received. Hugs, laughter even in this place. And that was nice. But again, that sense of being alone came up. And I looked around but could not find my sweetheart. I stepped into line and an old friend chatted me up before another got hold of his attention and he left the line. I was joined by another who walked with me till body, talking as we went. Then I stood by the casket. And I looked in. And I couldn’t move, and I couldn’t cry. I just stood there, perhaps longer than appropriate. And then my feet began to move. I went to my friend, she was worn out from weeping. And I held her awhile. I was not sure she recognised me but I thought I heard her whisper my name. I had no words…no words for this place. But I prayed…God…Your Strength, Comfort, Presence…and then I walked away.

I felt like someone had blown away the back of my head. I clutched onto some chairs to pray for stability, not willing to draw any attention to myself. I reminded God, as though He could ever forget, that I was not going back…my own resurrection was for a purpose. Then I looked into my purse, found my phone and called my sweetheart. He was outside, had made some friends. I stood a while and listened to another old friend, widowed, who had survived a stroke after her own husband’s passing. Hugged her and then went out to join my sweetheart. We walked away, as he talked to me, he was as moved as I had been, but he kept his conversation light and easy. Walking with him, I was home.

We went to our physical home, where we live with our children. And I looked around. We did not have money for food that day. Much of what we needed had run out. Including tissue, since I had suffered severe food poisoning that week. We had had not money for my medication. My sweetheart hid a cough, and I prayed. ‘God heal him, please.’ I sent a text to a friend to ask if she had boiled some beans and she told me to meet her at her place. I told her I would send, Leroy, my son. Oh I had passed by the bank that day, and my balance was still at 0.1/-. It was my pastor’s 10th Wedding Anniversary, and I wanted to surprise them with a gift. Sigh.

I went to bed and at 3:30am, I woke up to go to the bathroom. Unstable. Feeling funny. I came back and picked my phone again. 3:33. Three threes. God, God, God. Call unto Me. I called. Jesus. My sweetheart shuffled in the bed beside me. Jesus I called again. Then, and I will tell you marvelous things. I am listening LORD.

What is it about my old church that unnerves me? Weighs me down, It is situated at my old campus, and symbolises all my broken dreams. Both of Career, and  Ministry. It is at the site of my primary school. Most of those I know, who went through these paths, succeeded in them. At their Careers and Ministries. Even as I went through those roads, I must have always known, that I piece from another jig-saw puzzle that had somehow found itself inside this box. And no matter how much I tried, I would never fit into this pattern. I was a failure because this was not my world, this was not home.

My mind went to my family. Children born ‘out of pattern.’ A husband married ‘out of pattern.’ Not in conformity with most other lives. Not the lives I had dreamed mine would be like. I looked in my mind’s eye at my Bible Study Group, our pre-marital class, these had become my inner circle of friends. Some were still trying to fit into a world that may eventually receive them. That was their portion. I had failed in that respect. For the first time, I was grateful for the much loved ‘friends’ and ‘well-wishers’ that had slandered me mercilessly, because they would not help, and could not stand seeing anyone help me survive, even the world that I had been pushed into, that they had no wish to live in. A wilderness. And even there they had pursued me. Loving God thoroughly, hating me and mine in spite of themselves. Inadvertently, coveting even the fact that God refused to remove His Breath from me and mine, so that their discussions of me would be justified in my death. I was grateful, they were right. I was dead to their world. I was like a ghost, who would visit from time to time; sent and on an errand, making all and sundry really uncomfortable, but belonging to a world that could not be patterned by their standards.

I did not live by those standards. I did not want to. I came to the realisation, that the thing that stressed me most, was that I was expected to live up to a standard that most were still trying to master and understand, and made them desperately unhappy; for they were trying to justify their living, and validity, by things they could not take away. My world was not superior, I had needed them. Their validation, their assistance…at one point at least.  They had closed their hearts and hands to me…because they were unable to open these. God had closed those doors. They, like myself, did not understand what I was made for. Besides they were busy understanding their own purposes…and their silences, pointed snubs and putdowns, excruciating to me, were justified because they could not hold the spin of my patterning, as they were too busy figuring out their own. I was from another world. Living according to another pattern. And that other world, in that place that God Himself had put me and mine, He had provided all that I needed, in terms of love, sustenance, and yes, my resurrection and success, according to His, my Manufacturer’s Pattern of who He made me to be. And that is all I was ever meant to be. Strange. Peculiar. Bigger than I ever thought I could be. And He had enough Might in Him, to raise and validate me. Talk about Marvelous things…I rest.

vipslit@yahoo.ca

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