Last week, I released my second book, “The Cross Splits the World; The Protest, The Price and The Power of The Cross of Jesus Christ”. This book born out of events that occurred as I witnessed the Cross of Jesus Christ consciously being removed from its once prominent place into the dark recesses of a Church. In this book, I considered three thoughts about the Cross of Jesus Christ in the world in which we live.
The Protest of The Cross of Jesus Christ
So just what is it that the mere sight of the Cross of Jesus Christ and the faith behind it so objectionable? What is it about the Cross that causes such turmoil among brothers that friendships and family ties are forever broken? I believe it is because of what the Cross of Christ represents; the recognition of the totality of our wickedness and the impossibility of eternity with God in Heaven without the confession of the atoning work of Jesus Christ at the Cross.
Can God do this? Can God fix this? Can God move mountains? Can God do the seemingly impossible when all around you say that it is impossible?
The answer is YES!
Recently someone I know reached out to friends and family asking for “divine intervention and good intentions” in a very private matter. I messaged that I would keep them and the family in my prayers. The reply from my friend was “no divine intervention will help”. This hurt my heart as I know that somewhere deep inside, this person knows the truth. Yet somehow over the years a conscious choice to deny the truth of God’s realness, goodness and grace was made.
Some may think that life altering crises happen only to people that have made the conscious choice to ignore or reject God. Oh if that were only true. Time and time again, we see historical evidence recorded throughout the Word of God of the days, weeks, months, years even generations of chaos, calamity and turmoil that erupted in and around the lives of God’s children – divorce, death, adultery, sickness, prison, torture, disgrace, scandal, ridicule, demons, treachery and betrayal – to name a few. In each of these instances, God shows us that there are times the road to the miraculous travels through the ugly, wicked and evil – and it does so because of FAITH – faith that is sure and certain and confident.
“Now faith is confidence in what we hope for and assurance about what we do not see. This is what the ancients were commended for.” Hebrews 11:1-2 NIV
It is easy to go through life’s disappointments, failures, fears and uncertainties and lose whatever faith in God you might have. Once you begin to question His reason for the pain and turmoil in your life, you can very easily come to the conclusion that God’s really doesn’t care about you or your crises. And if He doesn’t care about you, then He is not a loving God and if He isn’t a loving God, then why would you spend your time believing in some fairy tale. Sound about right? Continue reading
This is a re-post of this article first written in 2015. How sad is it that all we need do is to change the name of the Church or Synagogue and it is as relevant today as it was three years ago.
My heart hurts today. The news on every channel is filled with images from South Carolina and the senseless killing of nine precious saints in the AME Church in Charleston. My heart weeps for the destruction.
satan has stepped up his unholy boldness; he is no longer lurking in the shadows. Oh no, he is taking his evil right to Main Street America.
his pervasive evil now invades our homes to steal our children right from their beds only to rape, maim and murder the innocents – all done in the name of evil. And satan laughs.
Evil now walks upright in the full light of day directly through the front door of our schools and opens fire on the innocents – killing all in its path; leaving a trail of destruction and tears that can never be repaired, never be forgotten – all done in the name of evil. And satan laughs.
Evil now boards our airplanes – unafraid and undaunted. It takes control and three thousand innocents are murdered – all done in the name of evil. And satan laughs.
Called to Pray by Linda Evans Shepherd
My rating: 5 of 5 stars
“Most of us have felt it: that unexplained prompting in our hearts to stop and pray for a friend, a loved one, or even a stranger. Sometimes we dismiss the feeling as a stray thought about friends, families, or situations. Sometimes we are even awakened from a deep sleep with an even deeper need to go to God in prayer. Where do those urges come from? Are they truly from God? And do those prayers have any effect on the one we’re praying for?
In Called to Pray, Linda Evans Shepherd dozens of inspiring true stories of people who have felt God’s call to pray–and the astonishing results of those impromptu prayers. For those who wonder if prayer has any effect or doubt that God communicates with us personally, this heart-stirring book will amaze, inspire, and equip them to respond to those holy promptings”
This author, Linda Evan Shepherd knows prayer. Her life is a prayer. I have been a fan of Ms. Shepherd since I first read one of her books a few years back. This book, Called to Pray, is another in a long line of wonderfully written testaments to the power of prayer. This book in particular will fill your heart with hope and joy in all that our Creator sees and does in the lives of His children. Thank you, Ms Shepherd. I am so looking forward to future titles from you.
Waiting on God: What to Do When God Does Nothing by Wayne Stiles
My rating: 3 of 5 stars
“What do you do when the life God has promised you looks nothing like the life he has given you? We wait at red lights, in long lines, and for a person to change. But the most difficult waiting? Waiting on God.
We want to know God’s plan so that we can trust the plan–but often God hides his plan so that we will trust him. What can we do in the meantime while we wait for an answer to prayer, a change of heart, or a miracle of provision?”
90 Minutes in Heaven by Don Piper
My rating: 5 of 5 stars
“Pastor Don Piper died January 18, 1989 when a semi-tractor truck crushed his car. Declared dead by the first rescue workers to arrive on the scene, Don’s body lay under a tarp for the next 90 minutes. Don’s soul, meanwhile, was experiencing love, joy, and life like he’d never known before. Don was in Heaven.
When another pastor’s prayers helped bring Don back to life, he became a living miracle! Yet this is one miracle Don wished never happened. Heaven’s bliss was replaced by excruciating pain and emotional turmoil. With the support and prayers of his beloved Eva, their three kids, and friends near and far, Don clings to his faith in God and fights to regain a semblance of his previous life. The Piper family’s incredible true story of perseverance and overcoming the challenges of life – and death – will bring hope and encouragement to all who see it.”
Prevail: Discover Your Strength in Hard Places by Cindy Trimm
My rating: 5 of 5 stars
“Your problems don’t define you; they refine you. Sometimes life feels like a roller coaster ride filled with ups, downs, twists, turns, and unexpected sudden drops. Instead of moving forward with peace and purpose, our lives spin out of control. When chaos and uncertainty threaten to make you feel helpless . . . what do you do? Don’t let life’s detours take you for a ride. Get back in the driver’s seat!”
Prevail by Dr. Cindy Trimm is the third book that I have read by this author and just when I think that she has said it all, I am wrong. Dr. Trimm has the amazing ability to have you take some of your life’s most heinous and hideous events and use them to bring success and fulfillment in your life.
Abandon: Laying Aside Your Plan for God’s Purpose by Tim Timberlake
My rating: 5 of 5 stars
“Your secret to living the life beyond your wildest dreams! Do you have a vision for how your life should turn out? Big plans? Great dreams?
Get ready to trade it in for something a whole lot bigger and infinitely greater! In Abandon, Tim Timberlake shows you how to exchange your life for God’s life. Obedience to God is not a burden, as many have thought. Instead, obedience is your key to experiencing the life of Heaven right now!”
Christ in You: Why God Trusts You More Than You Trust Yourself by Eric Johnson
My rating: 4 of 5 stars
“Every solution to every problem known to the human race lives in you. Inside each of us is a longing for a deeper truth, a deeper meaning. For centuries humanity has been searching every corner of our earth, plumbing the mysteries of the human mind and heart, in hopes of satisfying this quest of our souls.
What we’ve failed to realize is that the greatest Truth is revealed in the greatest mystery in the universe: Christ lives in you. It isn’t your destiny to live a life that is merely “getting by” or riddled with shame and fear. The ultimate price was paid for the ultimate temple–you. Not just for eternity’s sake but for the sake of the world.”
“For the mouth speaks what the heart is full of” Matthew 12:34
“A good man brings good things out of the good stored up in him, and an evil man brings evil things out of the evil stored up in him.”
“But the things that come out of a person’s mouth come from the heart, and these defile them.” Matthew 15:18
What do those verses have to do with Orange Juice? Let’s take a step back. If you were to take an orange and squeeze it with all your strength, what would the result be? Right… the result would be orange juice. It wouldn’t be tomato juice or apple juice. The orange can only give up what it has on the inside. Oranges make orange juice.
So it with we humans. We can keep our wrapper (the orange peel) tight around us… holding in all that there is about us… all that we are made of. However, apply a bit of pressure. We might get just a small tear… but our insides are still intact. We’re still holding to strong on the outside, no one can see our real insides.