A Woman's Perspective On The Times We Live In


February 5, 2016

What Is Wrong With This Picture?

     Call me naive, simply skeptical, or perhaps it is time to dust off my tin foil hat, but something doesn't seem right about this sudden and nearly hysterical reaction to the Zika virus.  Does anyone else wonder why this epidemic seemed to appear out of nowhere?  I mean, just a month ago, it was barely on the radar... and now the World Health Organization (WHO) has declared the virus a "Global  Health Emergency", and the U.S. Center for Disease Control (CDC) is advising protected sex after a case of Zika in Texas was determined to have spread through sexual contact.
     Something just doesn't seem right ... like there is a hidden agenda (again) and we are being manipulated for some other purpose(s).  So, here are the issues that have me concerned:  First of all, there is a report that appeared on the Natural News website, which stated, "Now we may be seeing the first wave of the horrific destruction that can be unleashed by self-replicating genetically modified organisms. The Zika virus, now spreading with unbridled ferocity, appears to have been caused by the release of genetically engineered mosquitoes that scientists hoped would sharply reduce malaria infections."
     The report continues:  "The Zika virus outbreak currently gripping the Americas could have been sparked by the release of genetically modified mosquitoes in 2012," reports The Mirror. "The insects were engineered by biotechnology experts to combat the spread of dengue fever and other diseases and released into the general population of Brazil in 2012... The Aedes aegypti mosquito sub-species that carries both the Zika virus and dengue was the type targeted with genetically modified mosquitoes."  That would explain why the symptoms of the Zika virus are described as "resembling dengue fever".
     Needless to say, if this report is true, something went horribly wrong.  These GMO mosquitos were created by incompetent scientists and released by unconscionable biotech corporations, with no concern about the effects on the ecosystem or the human population.  And this leads to my second concern.  So-called experts are now linking the Zika virus outbreak to a condition called microcephaly, in which an infant’s skull is too small for his or her brain, often crushing or otherwise severely damaging the brain.  A high percentage of children with this condition suffer some sort of neurological disability or retardation, and most will suffer convulsions, and many children born with microcephaly die young.  Was there ever any consideration of the effects upon humans if bitten by one of these genetically modified mosquitos?
      So, what are the solutions?  Brazil, which has been particularly hard hit by the virus outbreak (more than 4,000 cases of infants born with microcephaly to mothers with Zika in their bloodstream in the past year, according to Breitbart.com) is now fumigating with pesticides in advance of Rio de Janeiro's upcoming Carnival season.  Since there is now suspicion that the virus is spread through sexual contact, and Carnival is always suspect for sexually transmitted diseases, the Zika virus is one more health concern that must be addressed, and it is being met with a vast chemical fog.
     But unprotected sex and pesticides are not my only concern about the rapid spread of this disease. The abortion industry is now taking advantage of the outbreak by pushing abortion as a solution to the problem of microcephalic births.  As Breitbart News reported January 29, Planned Parenthood has taken advantage of fears surrounding the Zika crisis in Brazil to promote the expansion of unrestricted abortion throughout Latin America. The abortion business has especially targeted those Latin American countries with restrictive abortion laws, such as El Salvador, in hopes of using the crisis to ease existing abortion legislation.  But Planned Parenthood is not the only one pushing this agenda.   Now Women on Waves, an organization which uses ships to offer safe abortion services outside the territorial waters of countries where the procedure is restricted or forbidden, has announced that they will begin serving areas affected by Zika.
     I am sorry, but my spirit is telling me that all this happened too fast, and seemed too coordinated.  Maybe I'm just a little too suspicious by nature.  But when the cause is a genetically engineered carrier and the acceptable solutions are spraying with chemicals or readily-available abortions, then something smells rotten to me!  All we need now is a new vaccine to come on the scene, and I will know for sure that it is all contrived for our destruction.  Please, God, show us Your truth!  The evil schemes of men are about to overwhelm us, and we need wisdom and the strength to endure!

Isaiah 30:1     "Woe to the rebellious children," declares the LORD, "Who execute a plan, but not Mine, and make an alliance, but not of My Spirit, in order to add sin to sin;"
   



February 4, 2016

What Is Your Litmus Test For President?

     We are facing what I believe will be the most important President election in our lifetimes... perhaps in the life of the nation.  We sit at a crossroads.  Never before has our nation seemed so far from God and His principles, and the people so removed from a desire for Him.
     Just as the nation of Israel was established with God as their ruler, so was the United States founded with the idea that God would be at the center of its existence.  Say what you will ... that the Founding Fathers were Deists rather than Christians; that they never intended for God to be involved in the governing of this nation ... but there is still enough historical documentation that credits the hand of God on this land.  Whether it is the Mayflower Compact which states that the colonization of America by the Pilgrim leaders was for the glory of God, or the miraculous victories during the Revolutionary War that George Washington credited to God... it is apparent that God was seen as a heavenly ruler.
     But just as Israel strayed from their allegiance to God, so has this nation fallen away from following Him.  Israel decided that they wanted what they wanted as men, instead of the path that God take them down as His chosen people.  So, they opted for a king made of flesh; one that would listen to their desires.  We, too, have abandoned His fundamental truths for the desires of our fickle hearts, and it has resulted in such chaos and disorder that we are in danger of demanding a king-like candidate that will listen to our pleas and give us what we want.
     But that's not good enough for me.  Christians are speaking up these days and demanding a return of this nation to our Godly roots, and the candidates are paying attention.  You may have noticed that their rhetoric is including more inferences to God, and Bible verses are becoming part of campaign speech.  But, as Bible-believing Christians, isn't it our duty to be extra discerning when it comes to giving them our vote?  Shouldn't their actions mirror their words?
     If a man's deeds do not match his words, then how are we to trust him?  If a candidate says he is pro-life, yet voted to fund Planned Parenthood, isn't that contradictory?  Where is the fruit of his profession of faith?  In politics, words can be changed and altered to fit different positions, but the Bible says that "by our words we will be justified, and by our words we will be condemned."  Our words matter!  And candidates should be scrutinized to see if their words and actions match.
     Courting the Evangelical vote is nothing new.  Candidates over the past few cycle of elections have come to understand that it is a powerful and influential voting bloc.  But how many Christians do not hold a candidate accountable when it comes to declaring his/her faith?  Why do we let them slide by accepting their statement that they are a Christian, or they go to church regularly?  Is that all there is to your litmus test?  Why would it not be essential that they openly declare that Jesus Christ is their Lord and Savior?  Doesn't that tell us exactly where their moral center lies?  Anything less than that doesn't convince me of their commitment to God or to Godly leadership.
     Finally, we must take seriously the stand they take on social issues.  The last eight years have seen our nation slide deeper into an immoral abyss.  We, and our leaders, have compromised and accepted unbiblical standards of living... and those of us who dare to disagree are becoming targets of verbal (so far) persecution, discrimination, and what would have been illegal actions, just a few years ago.  Where is the candidate that is willing to call abortion what it is ... murder?  And where is the candidate that will declare that same-sex marriage is against their Creator's design for matrimony?  And who is brave enough to say that transgenderism is not okay, and should not be funded by the taxpayers?
     This nation once found favor in the eyes of God.  And I believe it was in large part because the people of this nation, and the leaders we elected to govern us, sought guidance from God and sought to follow His moral precepts.  I also believe that the downward spiral we are experiencing today is due to our abandonment of that righteous path.  As much as there are those who don't want to admit it ... we are under judgment for our sins.  If we are to ever return this nation to its previous greatness, we must begin with recognition of our sins, followed by repentance, and the choice of Godly leaders. Do not take this election lightly!  I sincerely believe that the lives, and perhaps the very existence of our children and grandchildren, depend on the next person whom we decide will lead us.  Lord, we want You as our Divine Ruler, and we earnestly pray that You will send us Your earthly representative to guide this nation back to You!

Hebrews 13:7     "Remember your leaders, those who spoke to you the word of God. Consider the outcome of their way of life, and imitate their faith."
   

February 3, 2016

I Warned You!

     There are times that things I see seem so clear and transparent, yet I have doubts that anyone ever reads what I write, or if they do, it is too difficult to take seriously.  Yet I know that I am not the only one who has been sounding the alarm.  Others have written of the covert efforts of the Muslim Brotherhood to infiltrate our country -- from the highest echelons of government, to our corporate board rooms, and our children's classrooms.
     In June, 2013 I wrote a detailed blog post about the clandestine endeavors surrounding the Brotherhood's endeavors to wage "a kind of grand jihad in eliminating and destroying the Western civilization from within."  The idea of a Global Caliphate was new and, frankly, most people in the West sneered at the notion.
     Now, nearly two-and-a-half years later, we are focused on the beheadings and exterminations of Christians in the Middle East; the exponential growth in rapes of European women by Muslim immigrants; and the growing threat of terrorist plots on our own soil.  But while we are zeroing in on these atrocities, there has been a more subtle jihad being committed in the heartland.
     In 2013, I warned you about the Cosmos Foundation, a charter school operator founded a decade ago by a group of professors and businessmen from Turkey. The group, currently using the name Harmony Schools, has become the biggest charter operation in the state of Texas, promising American parents that they could increase their children's comprehension in math and the sciences.  What concerned me was the fact that the Cosmos Foundation had also forged ongoing relationships with a close-knit network of businesses and organizations run by Turkish immigrants. Some of those founders, as well as school operators, and many of their business suppliers, were followers of a man named Fethullah Gülen.
     Since I wrote that article, it has become apparent that Turkey has regressed from a secular democracy into an Islamic state, and Imam Fethullah Gülen and his Gülen Movement (GM) had an enormous influence in setting the increasingly Islamist agenda in Turkey.  In fact, in Turkey, 75 % of the nation’s two million preparatory school students are enrolled in Gülen institutions. In America, GM runs the largest charter school network in the nation.  In 2013, I asked the following question:  When you connect the dots, don't you think all this information is worthy of our scrutiny and our concern?  And in light of the connections between GM and the political campaign of a certain candidate for the President of the United States, I still stand by that astute question.


     And apparently, so does Ariel Cohen, a writer for The Blaze.  Mr. Cohen has written an excellent article, in which he points out that the myriad of organizations affiliated with the Gülen movement include banks, newspapers, universities, charities, research institutes, and the largest network of private Muslim schools in the world. The school curriculum is not "overtly" Islamist, and claims to focus on science, technology, engineering and math (also known as STEM).  Cohen alleges that the Gülen-affiliated net business worth exceeds $25 billion, and together, they receive approximately $150 million a year in U.S. tax breaks and subsidies -- all leading to an unhealthy mix of politics, education, and religion that is infecting our nation.
     Mr. Cohen is so bold as to suggest that the Gülen organization "appears to be busy buying, using and abusing political power.... The web reaches up to the corridors of the U.S. Congress and down to local schools from Texas to Tahoe. According to a USA TODAY investigation, over 200 trips for congressmen and congressional staff have been sponsored by Gülenist entities".
     And here is something that should concern us all ... According to the Clinton Foundation website, Recep Ozkan, former president of the Gülen-connected Turkish Cultural Center, contributed between $500,000 and $1 million. Unsurprisingly, former President Bill Clinton has appeared at Gülen movement events and praised the founder’s contributions to world peace and inter-religious understanding.
     But these "Turkish operatives" are not tied to just one party.  Both Democratic Representative Henry Cuellar of Texas, and Republican Senator Kelly Ayotte have been reported to be recipients of Gülen organizational donations (although Senator Ayotte returned funds, once she discovered their origin).  Currently, the FBI is engaged in a massive probe of Gülenist activities in this country. However, the investigation is limited to the Gülen-linked schools.
     But there is some hope ... It is the task of law enforcement to protect our politics, our country, and most importantly our children, from illicit external influences. Therefore, as the FBI investigates the network, it can also look into the political donations by the members of the movement.  I hope they do so.
     It is apparent in his home country of Turkey that Imam Gülen has an agenda ... to infiltrate all the business centers, re-educate the children, and obtain State power, and a warrant for his arrest has been issued.  Does it not seem plausible that he and his followers are trying to institute the same paradigm here in the U.S.?  We need to pray that the FBI will be allowed to conduct a thorough investigate; that Congress will weed out this invasive and subversive enemy of American sovereignty; and that God will shine His light upon the organization's false motives.  I know we have ignored this enemy for far too long, but I have faith that God can destroy their plans.

Job 5:12-13     "He frustrates the devices of the crafty, so that their hands cannot perform their enterprise or anything of [lasting] worth.  He catches the [so-called] wise in their own trickiness, and the counsel of the schemers is brought to a quick end."

February 2, 2016

Where Is Common Sense When It Comes To Expressing Our Faith?

     Just a random glance at headlines across the country will reveal the battle we are in to protect our faith.  Presidential candidate Ben Carson was approached by a proclaimed atheist voter prior to the Iowa caucuses.  Carson was asked if he agreed with other candidates whose positions state that Biblical law trumps Constitutional law.
     First of all, that is a loaded question; especially because it is easy for misinterpretation.  To me, the term "Biblical law", rather than "God's law", leaves one open for charges of intolerance and injustice, if not properly explained... God's laws are the commandments that He makes perfectly clear are His alone.  Biblical law could refer to all the addendum's that the nation of Israel has declared since its inception; a disproportionate number of which were instituted because they were under an awesome obligation to maintain their covenant relationship, and they wrongly attempted to merit His favor and blessing by adding their own restrictions to His laws.  But I'm getting off-track...
      I would assume that the questioner had in mind such laws like the one the Supreme Court recently mandated in which same-sex marriage is now constitutionally protected, in opposition to God's law that marriage is between a man and a woman.  I believe that Ben Carson's answer was right on the money: "Our Constitution, which is the supreme law of our land, was designed by men of faith, and it has a Judeo-Christian foundation... If we create laws that are contrary to the Judeo-Christian values that we have, then I think we should fight against those kinds of laws."  Carson went on to make his position perfectly clear: "I personally believe that we still have an obligation to obey the laws whether we agree with them or not. Otherwise, we would be a lawless nation.  But that doesn’t mean we shouldn’t fight against anything we see as unjust."  (I would have added, "or unrighteous").
     In a slightly abbreviated version, I think he's saying that our elected officials must abide by the laws of the land.  But when confronted with a man-made law that goes against God's commandments, then we all have a duty to fight to change those laws to align with God.  Clearly, those who do not believe in God or His sovereignty over human affairs will seek to change laws to appease the flesh.  At least we still have men in the public arena who seek to obey and please God.
     And there is still some God-given common sense in the Texas State Supreme Court as well.  The Court ruled in favor of a group of middle and high school cheerleaders who displayed banners with religious messages on them at football games, citing the following as their reasons for deciding in favor of the cheerleaders:  "messages created solely by student cheerleaders do not become government speech simply because aspects of cheerleaders’ activities are regulated by the school,” the brief stated. “Because the messages on the banners are the cheerleaders’ messages, the content of which is not dictated by the school, the speech is not the school’s, and it does not qualify as ‘government speech.’ The speech belongs to the cheerleaders, and it is entitled to First Amendment Protection.”
     What astounded me was that the School District, itself, -- which means at least one person -- objected to the use of Biblical Scripture or inferences on signs and banners held up by the cheerleaders to encourage team spirit.  In Texas, School Districts are run by School Boards, which if I'm not mistaken, should have the best interests of the students at heart.  But here's what is most upsetting to me ... a district court judge initially ruled that the cheerleaders had the right to display the banners at sporting events as they were “constitutionally permissible.” However, the school district appealed the ruling with the backing of the ACLU!  Additionally, the school district had decided to allow the banners but had the ability to censor them at will.
     So, I ask you again, where is the common sense that says it's OK for a School Board to censor a student who wishes to encourage another student with a message from God?  Since when is a cheerleader, with a banner, a form of government-and-state-sponsored religion?  Has all common sense just gone out the window?
     Well, I would suggest that it has in Phoenix, Arizona.  I say that because the City Council of Phoenix has given members of the local Satanic Temple permission to offer the opening prayer at an upcoming Council meeting.  While the satanists have voiced their intention to "do nothing offensive", stating that, "We’re citizens of this government, and we would like our voices to be heard.  If they don’t want to accept, constitutionally what must happen is that all voices must be taken down from the public forum. It’s basically all voices must be heard or none at all."
     Now, those of us with common sense will immediately surmise that this is simply an argument that the Enemy of God is using to try to put satan on equal footing with the Most High God.  It not only makes a mockery of prayer in general, but is a blatant taunt in the face of those who have faith.  But here's the real paradox... the satanists explained their position as follows:  "Consistent with the U.S. Supreme Court’s direction, the city cannot dictate religious viewpoints or the content of a prayer.  In addition, government may not exclude a denomination or a religion from praying under these circumstances."
     While they may say that they "don't believe in a literal Satan", but instead view the biblical Satan as "a metaphor for rebellion against tyranny", they have made it perfectly clear that they wish to participate by offering a prayer, which by definition, is "a solemn request for help or expression of thanks addressed to God or an object of worship."  They can deny they worship Satan all they want, but their actions and their words belie not only their mockery of us, but their deceit in order to achieve the devil's goal.
     So, my post title asks where has the common sense gone as it applies to the expression of our faith.  Obviously, it is disappearing from within the unbelieving public; from within our court systems and educational boards; and from those who are appointed to govern our cities and communities.  Human values and selfish concerns have replaced sound judgment and the ability to consider matters from a discerning spirit.  It is quite apparent that forthcoming elections will have profound ramifications on our society, our culture, and our nation.  Whether it is for the office of President of the United States,  a District Judge, or School Board Members, you better know (before you vote) where they stand in regards to faith in the Sovereign God of the Universe... or we are going to see a vast change in how we are allowed to worship and obey Him.

Psalm 1:1-2   "Blessed is the man who walks not in the counsel of the wicked, nor stands in the way of sinners, nor sits in the seat of scoffers; but his delight is in the law of the Lord, and on His law he meditates day and night."
   

February 1, 2016

When The Truth Becomes Illegal

     Do you want proof that the world is topsy turvy?  That everything is turned upside down; right is wrong, and wrong is right?  Just take a look at the decision a grand jury in Houston made when it indicted two journalists who exposed Planned Parenthood's alleged policies of selling aborted babies' body parts.
     Robert Knight of BarbWire.com reports that a felony charge of tampering with a government record was filed against Center for Medical Progress(CMP) founder David Daleiden and CMP employee Sandra Merritt.  Both Daleiden and Merritt made a series of undercover videos in which PP officials allegedly discussed prices and techniques for harvesting aborted fetuses for profit.  Mr. Daleiden also was charged with soliciting the purchase of human organs – as if he really intended to buy them.  Where is the common sense of these grand jurors?
    Here's where things got completely turned around:  The grand jury was initially formed to decide whether a Houston Planned Parenthood clinic was illegally selling unborn babies’ body parts. Instead, the jury ended up indicting the people who tried to reveal the illegal actions.
     I thought the BarbWire article presented an intelligent and clever analogy ... By the grand jury’s reasoning, undercover police officers trying to bust drug dealers should be prosecuted for trying to buy drugs.  Or how about this? Undercover reporters who get the goods on perps should be hauled in and charged with what the perps are doing.
     But here's the deal ... It’s a federal felony to profit from the sale of fetal body parts.  Yet the Houston clinic gets off scott free!  Not even a slap on the wrist!  And we cannot ignore the great lengths to which Planned Parenthood went to create doubt about the videos; specifically, declaring that they had been heavily edited with "cuts, skips, missing tape, and changes in camera angle."
     For anyone who has ever uploaded a video to YouTube, or sent one to friends or family, you know that it is not uncommon to edit the video to eliminate irrelevant material, or to stop and start a camera, or to change camera angles.  I have personally created videos for our business and webpage, and have employed all these techniques... nothing unusual about these characteristics of the CMP videos.
     Just as the writer at BarbWire points out, "[They] simply cannot get around the fact that segments of intact dialogue reveal PP representatives calmly discussing body part prices.  There is no defensible context, nor did they edit out any clips of them later saying, Just kidding."  I agree!  Under what rationale is it OK for multiple PP officials and reps to describe the "crunching" of skulls and the description of fetuses as "It's a boy!", as they offer their pricing structure?
     The only bit of good news that came out of this circus is that Texas lawmakers are studying new laws on fetal tissue donation, and the Texas Health and Human Services Commission said it will drop Planned Parenthood from the Medicaid program.  I guess we will have to see if that decision comes under fire, as well.  I half expect the Feds to try to override state's rights in this matter.
     But I suppose that the miscarriage of justice carried out in Houston should not surprise us.  The Bible tells us that "Though they know God's decree that those who practice such things deserve to die, they not only do them but give approval to those who practice them (Romans 1:32)".  They give approval to the evil-doers and persecute the righteous.  Is that what our society has come to?  If so, then we deserve every ounce of judgment that is coming from on high... and believe me, it is coming!

Isaiah 50:20-21   "Woe to those who call evil good and good evil, who put darkness for light and light for darkness, who put bitter for sweet and sweet for bitter! Woe to those who are wise in their own eyes, and shrewd in their own sight!"
   

January 31, 2016

2 Corinthians 12:7-10

“There was given to me a thorn in the flesh, the messenger of Satan to torment me…”


     How many times have we all struggled to understand this part of Scripture?  How many different explanations have you heard as to what the thorn in Paul’s side might have been?  I don’t know about you, but I have read commentaries that attempted to explain it as a physical ailment; others that it was a spiritual problem, such as Pride, or Guilt over his presence at the stoning of Stephen; still others that it might have even been a woman, perhaps his wife!  That one, I have a hard time embracing.  But the truth is that the Bible doesn’t make it clear as to what Paul’s affliction actually was.
     I admit that I have had no clue over my years of study… until now.  And even now, I cannot declare that my understanding is exact or certain; but I think the veil is being pulled back just a little.  So, I hope you will accept my thoughts as those of someone who is earnestly trying to understand God’s Word.  Here is where I’m going…
     As always, when reading the Bible, we must be careful to interpret Scripture within the context of the passage.  2 Corinthians 12:7-10 are all about this thorn that is afflicting Paul and the reasons and consequences of his suffering.  I believe that God is revealing to me, within the context of my recent experiences (and what He has been showing me of late), a revelation of these verses.
      Let’s take a look at the entire passage (in the Amplified Version of the Bible):
7 And to keep me from being puffed up and too much elated by the exceeding greatness (preeminence) of these revelations, there was given me a thorn (a splinter) in the flesh, a messenger of Satan, to rack and buffet and harass me, to keep me from being excessively exalted.
8 Three times I called upon the Lord and besought [Him] about this and begged that it might depart from me;
9 But He said to me, My grace (My favor and loving-kindness and mercy) is enough for you [sufficient against any danger and enables you to bear the trouble manfully]; for My strength and power are made perfect (fulfilled and completed) and show themselves most effective in [your] weakness. Therefore, I will all the more gladly glory in my weaknesses and infirmities, that the strength and power of Christ (the Messiah) may rest (yes, may pitch a tent over and dwell) upon me!
10 So for the sake of Christ, I am well pleased and take pleasure in infirmities, insults, hardships, persecutions, perplexities and distresses; for when I am weak [in human strength], then am I [truly] strong (able, powerful in divine strength).
     First, Paul makes it very clear that he has been blessed with an abundance of revelations from God, Himself, and it would only be natural to begin to think more highly of himself – or to start glorifying himself rather than the One from whom they came.  So he says that he was given the mysterious thorn – or as he calls it, a splinter.  At first that word “splinter” threw me.  Why would Paul, who also refers to the thorn as a messenger of Satan, call it a “splinter”?  What could they possibly have in common?
     Well, I have always understood “messenger” to be an angel, or a spiritual emissary.  This one comes from Satan, so it is possible that it is an evil spirit; one of Satan’s fallen angels; a demon – whatever it is, it is associated with Satan.  And calling it a splinter indicates to me that it is a smaller unit of evil, broken off of the larger entity, known as Satan.  That’s what a splinter is … a breaking off of a sharp fragment from a larger piece.
    So whatever this “thorn” is, it is a spirit that has been sent to torment Paul by Satan.  But we must remind ourselves that this “thorn”, or spirit, was allowed to afflict Paul because God allowed it, just as He allowed Satan to torment Job.  But just like Job, Paul is protected, and it is all for God’s glory.
     How do I know this?  Because I see in these four short verses, what God has been showing me through our need for spiritual healing.  Even though Paul asked God to remove the tormenting spirit, it did not depart from him.  That is because God wanted Paul to experience the power of Christ (which is the Holy Spirit) working in him to defeat the tormenting spirit.  If God just took it from Paul because he asked Him to, there would be no testimony of experiencing the Holy Spirit working in Paul’s life.
    I have seen it first-hand these past few months.  Just the other night, I was given the privilege by God to help a beloved person in my life get free of her own “thorns”.  When God says, that “His grace is sufficient because His strength is made perfect in our weakness”, here is what I have seen … Because He loves us and shows us favor as His children (His grace), He loves showing us that the Holy Spirit can be our strength when battling the spiritual forces of wickedness that attack us; that it is precisely when we are at our weakest, and most desperate, that the power of Christ can be most evident.
     I have personally witnessed the Holy Spirit come in the fullness and power of Christ to help people bind the spirits of anger, pride, rejection, guilt, shame, vanity … you name it; all the thorns that Satan can throw at them.  But the Holy Spirit is present and helps them hand over those spirits to Christ to deal with as He wishes, and to receive the freedom and peace of Christ resting on them.
     I know that this is not a mainstream interpretation of this Scripture, but I believe that Paul wants us to know that the reason he can “glory” in his infirmities, weaknesses, persecutions, and distresses is because he can testify to the power of the Holy Spirit in defeating the messengers from Satan.  When Paul was at his weakest (in his human strength), he experienced the full divine power of the Holy Spirit working in him, with him, and through him to be the strongest he could be.
     And another thing, I believe that Paul was able to rid himself of that thorn.  Note that he only says a thorn was given to him and he asked God to take it from him, and God’s reply was to send the Holy Spirit to show Paul that there was strength and power from God to help him be rid of his torment.  It does not say that he retained the thorn.  And I can tell you from personal experience, that we can all rid ourselves of our thorns and tormenting spirits through the authority from Christ by calling upon the power of the Holy Spirit. I have seen it and it glorifies God in this realm, the spiritual realm, and in Heaven.  What an awesome God we serve!

January 30, 2016

A Love Letter From God

     With all of the chaos and disorder going on the world, we sometimes lose our focus and forget that there are people all around us, living their individual lives and who are unable to even think or care about what is happening across the globe.
     Recently, it seems that I have witnessed so many people who are hurting... marriages in crisis, young adults who are longing for Godly relationships, and people who fear that real love may have passed them by.  In each case, I pull out a tattered copy of a letter that was written to me over thirty years ago.  I received it at a time in my life when I was hurting from a failed relationship, and felt that my opportunities to find "my soul mate" were rapidly disappearing.
     A new friend of mine, gave this letter to me and asked me to read it carefully and let it speak to my heart.  I'm not sure where he first saw the letter, or who originally wrote it, but I have let these same words speak into the hearts of other broken-hearted people over the last 30 years; people who needed to hear that they were loved by the One who counted, and needed to hear His promises to them.  I now share it with you, and anyone who may need its message of hope ....
   
     Everyone longs to give themselves completely to someone ... to have a deep soul relationship with another ... to be loved thoroughly, and exclusively.  But God says, "Not until you are satisfied and fulfilled and content with being loved by Me alone; with giving yourself totally and unreservedly to me; to having an intensely personal and unique relationship with Me alone."  
     I love you, and until you discover that only in Me is your satisfaction to be found, you will not be capable of the perfect human relationship that I have planned for you.  You will never be united with another until you are united with Me -- exclusive of anyone or anything else; exclusive of any other desires or longings.  
     I want you to stop planning, stop wishing, and allow Me to give you the most thrilling plan existing; one that you could never imagine.  I want you to have the best.  Please allow me to bring it to you -- you just keep watching me -- expecting the greatest things.  Keep experiencing the satisfaction that I am.  Keep listening and learning the things I tell you.  You just wait, that's all...
     Don't be anxious.  Don't worry.  Don't look around at the things others have gotten or that I've given them.  Don't look at the things you think you want.  You just keep looking off and away up to Me, or you'll miss what I want to show you.  
     And then when you're ready, I'll surprise you with a love far more wonderful than any you would ever dream of.  You see, until you are ready, and until the one I have for you is ready -- I am working even this minute to have you both ready at the same time -- until you are both satisfied exclusively with me and the life I prepared for you, you won't be able to experience the love that exemplifies your relationship with Me, and is thus, perfect love.
     And dear one... I want you to have this most wonderful love.  I want you to see, in the flesh, a picture of your relationship with Me, and to enjoy materially and concretely, the everlasting union of beauty and perfection and love that I offer you with Myself.  
     Know that I love you!

     At the time I received it, it helped me recover from my own broken heart, although I am embarrassed to say that I did not know God as well as I should have at that time.  But I was reintroduced to the spirit of love that is at the heart of our Father in Heaven, and it began my journey of seeking more intimacy with Him.
     The friend who gave it to me?  Well, he turned out to be my future husband; the one whom God was working on at the same time He was working on me... and He brought us together in His timing. I kept that letter forecasting God's love for us, and for each other, through the years, always nestled in the middle of my Bible until the ink started fading and the edges became ragged and torn.  I finally had it laminated, in all its tattered glory, because I knew it would be needed to speak to many more hearts than mine.
     Perhaps you are familiar with this letter, or have seen it before.  It doesn't really matter where it came from.  All I know is that it found its way to me when I needed it most, and I hope you will share it with someone who is hurting and could use its assurance and words of expectation.  We all need to know that we are loved!

1 Corinthians 13:13    "And now these three remain: faith, hope and love. But the greatest of these is love."

January 29, 2016

Is Babbel A Tool To Return Us To Babel?

     In case you're a little confused by the title of today's post, let me explain ... Bible readers will recognize the name of Babel as a city (now thought to be Babylon) in the Plain of Shinar where God confounded a presumptuous attempt to build a tower into heaven by confusing the common language of its many builders into many mutually incomprehensible languages.
     Now, in the 21st Century, we have a company called Babbel that offers an online language learning software and e-learning platform available in various languages. Thirteen languages are currently offered: Dutch, Danish, English, French, German, Indonesian, Italian, Norwegian, Polish, Portuguese, Russian, Swedish, Spanish and Turkish.  People from all over the world can now learn how to communicate with each other, and comprehend each others' languages.
     So, is there any reason to be skeptical of this latest innovation, or to be concerned in their choice of a company name?  Maybe we should look behind the curtain at both Babel and Babbel.  Let's take Babel first, and for that, we need to go to the Bible ... In Genesis 9:1, it says, God blessed Noah and his sons and said to them, "Be fruitful and multiply and fill the earth."  Again, in verse 7, God repeats Himself, "But you, be fruitful and multiply; spread out over the earth and multiply on it."  
     Obviously, this commandment to "fill the earth" and to "spread out over the earth" was an important part of the purpose God willed for His creation of man.  But in Genesis, Chapter 11, we see that some men had other ideas.  Scripture says that at one time the whole earth had the same language and vocabulary, and apparently men went to and fro across the earth.  But then some of them got together and said, "Come let us build ourselves a city and a tower with its top in the sky.  Let us make a name for ourselves; otherwise, we will be scattered over the face of the whole earth."   

     Now, we see rebellion against God and His will, and a desire to exalt themselves (make a name for themselves); even to the point of climbing to Heaven and challenging God.  But what is God's response?  He says, "If they have begun to do this as one people all having the same language, then nothing they plan to do will be impossible for them."  So what does He do?  He confused their language and scattered them over the face of the earth so that they could not come together to oppose Him.
     Now, let's take a quick look at this new language learning software.  What is it's objective?  It seems benign at first glance... to make it easy within the global community to understand each other, and perhaps to become "one" with the people of the earth; no more language barriers or obstacles to working together.  Could there really be any downside to that?  Maybe only to those of us looking at it through our Biblical worldview.
     Just think about this ... what if the original city and tower of Babel were part of satan's plan to bring men together in one place, teach them the knowledge he had observed about God and His ways (before his downfall), and then collectively establish his own kingdom which would oppose the Will of God?  Think how much easier it would be to convince these people that they could be 'god' in their own right, if they could all understand each other?  (And notice that the devil is still peddling the same temptation as he did in the Garden of Eden -- you, too, can be like God).  If satan could convince them to follow his plan, he could easily establish a tyranny where men would be prevented from knowing the Truth about God.  By confusing the languages, so they could no longer understand each other, and scattering them across the globe, God thwarted that evil plan.
     Instead, God executed His own plan.  He chose a man named Abram to become father of a nation through which His Son would be born, and in Whom the world would be called to believe through all generations.  And God's Son, through His Church, which He, Himself, planted is bringing together all men scattered throughout the earth to faith in Him.
     So, is it just coincidence that a new language learning software is called Babbel?  Or is it a signpost that, in these Last Days, there is the opportunity for mankind to erase the language barriers that God instituted, and for satan to use this technology to once again bring men together, collectively, to try and establish their own will in defiance of God?
     I'm at the point where I don't think anything is coincidence anymore.  And nothing has really changed; the devil will always use whatever mechanisms he can to establish his kingdom here on earth.  But he never learns, does he?  If Babbel could ever be used to bridge the language confusion among men, then God will, once again, come down to see what is happening and make a judgment. That judgement is always the scattering of man's works, when they are opposed to Him.  Only this time, it will be Jesus coming down from Heaven to judge the wicked, and it will be His kingdom that is established on earth, as it is Heaven.  There will be no more confusion, clamor, or babel ... however you want to spell it.

Proverbs 19:21   "Many are the plans in the mind of a man, but it is the purpose of the Lord that will stand."

January 28, 2016

Entertainment News: From Conspiracy To Collaboration

     I have made my views on the current state of entertainment well-known.  While some may think that movies, TV and videos reflect our culture, I happen to believe that they are often used to drive our societal opinions and values.
     I really try to stay away from the popular and tasteless fare that is fed to the masses, but there were two shows that I was curious about this week, because I know they will have tremendous impact upon the public.  The first was a revival of the well-liked 90s-era sci-fi mystery, X-Files; and the second was the premiere of a new show called Lucifer.  (At first, I determined that I would not deem to give my approval by even watching any show that appeared to glamorize the Enemy.  But then I felt that I could not truthfully warn against watching it, if I did not know the substance of the show).
     So, here's my thoughts after watching both programs .... I almost found it comical in the first episode of X-Files to see how hard the writers worked to get in every conspiracy that we have been faced with since the show last aired.  I must admit that I was not a devoted or enthusiastic fan of the first round of alien-infused adventures that starred agents Mulder and Scully.  But I was curious to see  how the show handled all the subterfuge and schemes that have become almost mainstream in the last  15 years.
     The character Fox Mulder enumerates all the plots that have him spooked these days.  He voices his concerns over the government's growing intrusion in our lives, including constant surveillance of us through drones and advanced technology.  And speaking of technology, Mulder even goes so far as to suggest that the rapid rate of technological developments may be alien-assisted, or at least inspired by knowledge derived from aliens.  He's also not afraid to point out the militarization of the police, nor their objective to squelch such conspiracy theorists as himself.  He actually says, at one point, "The government lies as a matter of policy"!  It was as if all the things alluded to in the original series have now become accepted as fact.  And the direction that the first two episodes took toward giving credibility to alien abductions and "seeding the planet" with human/alien hybrid babies screamed Genesis 6:1-4 to anyone paying attention.  It will be interesting to see where the next episodes take the audience.
     Then there was the very slick presentation of the new TV character Lucifer Morningstar.  It was almost sickening to see how they glamorized the primary Fallen Angel.  From his arrival on scene in a classic black 1953 Corvette (with a license plate that read Fallen1), to his suave British accent, and almost James Bond-ish appeal, it was evident that God's enemy was going to be presented as irresistible and captivating.
     He apparently owns a nightclub, complete with whorish women and a seductive bartender who constantly reminds him that he should return to hell and his duties there.  But the devil in him longs to escape that prison and punish the wicked on earth; exposing their sins and helping the good guys fight evil.
     Although there is much about Lucifer that is blasphemous ... his constant referral to God as "Father" and "Dad" diminishes the Holiness of our God and belittles His position.  That's just for starters.  And to paint the real Lucifer as simply an adventurous, spoiled, and naughty child of God who was unjustly cast out of Heaven is to totally misrepresent the very real danger of cooperating with him.   The fact that Lucifer became Satan was never addressed, nor were the depths of his hostile rebellion against God, The Father, truly revealed.
     The one thing that the writers of this show did get right was how easy it was for Lucifer to beguile and entice people to reveal their deepest inner desires, and how he manipulated that to get what he wanted.  But then they have twisted that characteristic into showing how Lucifer simply wants to bring forth the Truth; knowledge that only he can bring forth to the world.  This is the classic Gnostic version of the Biblical story and Lucifer.
     Gnostics believe that Lucifer is the liberator of man and the world.  He offers wisdom, the liberating Gnosis (knowledge of spiritual mysteries) that wakes man up and saves him.  He is the Light-Bearer, the embodiment of enlightenment and reason.  (It is no coincidence that the word Illuminati is from a Latin word which means “enlightened"... just sayin'.)  The Gnostics revered Lucifer as the beneficent god who gifted mankind with self-consciousness and awareness of his actions.  Lucifer is both friend and brother to his fellow man; and perhaps the most dangerous aspect of this vision of Lucifer is the aspect of "reconciliation of opposites"; that it's okay to work with Lucifer for the betterment of mankind.
     And that is exactly how this attractive character of Lucifer Morningstar is being showcased.  But the very real sad and scary truth of this glitzy TV show is that it is the product of those who worship the real Lucifer, the Enemy of God; and its purpose is to fool the millions who will not only fall for the false image of Satan, but will fall for his lies and worship him, turning away from the knowledge of the One True God.
     I predict that this show will become a runaway hit and a darling of the New Age crowd.  It is just one more step towards our culture's rebellion against our Creator, and brings us one step closer to our judgment.  It's pretty telling, don't you think, that we are being exposed to these two shows at the same time... the first announces that the alien (fallen angel) agenda is real; and the second heralds the appearance of the chief Fallen Angel, himself!

Luke 12:5     “But I will show you whom you should fear: Fear Him who, after the killing of the body, has power to throw you into hell. Yes, I tell you, fear Him.”



January 27, 2016

Evil Revisited

     As Soviet troops approached the Nazi prison camp at Auschwitz in January 1945, most of its population was evacuated and sent on a death march. The prisoners remaining at the camp were liberated 71 years ago today, on January 27, 1945, a day now commemorated as International Holocaust Remembrance Day.
     And this next Saturday will mark 83 years since Adolph Hitler was appointed Chancellor of Germany and the supposed one thousand year Reich had begun.  It has been nearly a century, yet the evil perpetrated by this satan-influenced monster is still present in the world.
     Although world history will tell us that Hitler was defeated shortly after the liberation of Auschwitz, his legacy, and the evil that it embodies, still lives on.  Those who personally lived through the nightmare and horrors are fewer in number, and their voices will soon be in the past, while the interest in Hitler among the younger generation is growing --- especially in light of the migrant refugee problem in Europe, accompanied by civil unrest and economic hardship.
     In fact, two years ago, Britain's Daily Mail reported, "Hitler’s ideology — and some of his methods — have new adherents."  Due to the financial upheaval over the Euro, economic hardship was exploited by Far-Right groups with neo-Nazi ideals, such as the Golden Dawn movement in Greece, and now the "Nationalist Settlers" movement in rural Germany.  The movement in Greece is admittedly fascist, and it is not just aimed at Jews, but illegal immigrants.  The Nationalist Settlers have adopted an ideology that returns not only to traditional dress and values, but according to those who have researched them, they believe wholeheartedly in the whole Nazi racist superman garbage and are worming their way into local positions of power as councillors, volunteer firemen, teachers and festival organizers.
     The world is also seeing a rise in anti-semitism in both Germany and France, and Jews are openly fearing persecution, and greater numbers are leaving Europe every year.  And then there is the report about Jamal, 80 miles northeast from Berlin, where every home except one is owned by a neo-Nazi.  Knut Jahn, who lives in the village of Jamal, said, "They hold pagan festivals around bonfires, sing songs banned since the fall of the Third Reich and cluster around a signpost that informs the visitor just how far away Braunau-am-Inn is; the Austrian birthplace of their beloved Adolf Hitler."
     Mr. Jahn expressed fear over the spread of this evil ideology throughout the small villages and hamburgs of Germany, because the far-right tries to indoctrinate children as young as five into Hitler worshipping.  But it's not only Germany that is seeing the return of Hitler-lovers.  A group of neo-Nazis shocked passersby in Newcastle, northern England, with an impromptu rally featuring a banner with the words "Hitler was right" in front of a picture of the Nazi dictator's face.
     Israel National News reported that some 20 activists from the far-right "National Action" group staged the Nazi flash mob, and the group assembled in front of a World War Two monument in the city center, and proceeded to give Nazi salutes and chant racist slogans, as stunned passersby looked on. They held a large banner with the words "Refugees not welcome, Hitler was right," in an apparent attempt to capitalize on anti-immigrant sentiment triggered by a much-criticized open-door policy elsewhere in Europe.
     Right now we see Europe as a continent in chaos, and here are some interesting facts you may not be aware of... that word chaos is associated with Leviathan of the Bible.  In fact, the Leviathan of the Middle Ages was personified by John Milton in Paradise Lost as an image of Satan, endangering both God's creatures (by being embodied as a serpent-like sea monster and attempting to eat them) and God's creation (by threatening it with upheaval in the waters of Chaos).  According to the author of The Satanic Bible, Anton Szandor LaVey,  Leviathan is listed as one of the Four Crown Princes of Hell.  And following right on its heels, in demonology, the Leviathan is one of the seven princes of Hell (envy), and its gatekeeper.
     So it kind of makes sense that chaos is reigning now throughout the world, doesn't it?  And with all the recent trouble with migrant refugees from the Middle East, the mingling of two hate-filled ideologies (Radicalized Islam and Nazism) only spells trouble for Europe and the world.  But just as evil was conquered at the Cross, the One Who Will Judge The World will crush the head of Leviathan and restore His peace upon the earth.  No amount of revisited hate and rebellion by the princes of hell can usurp the reign of our King.

Isaiah 27:1    "In that day the Lord with His hard and great and strong sword will punish Leviathan the fleeing serpent, Leviathan the twisting serpent, and He will slay the dragon that is in the sea."