Sunday, April 24, 2011

rain and renewal

friday was a holiday for me. I work for four catholic doctors, so we get good friday off. it was pretty windy during the day, and hot. we had some business in the utterly user unfriendly downtown tulsa, and probably could have used sails on our little versa and gone just as fast. faster. we stayed home most of the rest of the day. too windy to do anything.

later toward evening, just before sunset, I captured these shots of the brewing skies. it that time, it was just as still as space …

good friday promisegood friday promise (2)good friday promise (5)

saturday was also rainy off and on. we had some silver coins we sold for a little extra cash – and got more than I thought we were going to get and they didn’t even buy all of them. the lady said a couple of them were worth more as coins than they were as silver, and we should sell them online. so off to get a few provisions, and home. this was an answer to prayer, as I had asked the Lord for some extra money for some things we needed. I am sure the beau did as well.

after dinner that night we had an engaging conversation about spiritual warfare, and who we are in Christ. one of my favorite passages is in james 1:23-24

23For if any be a hearer of the word, and not a doer, he is like unto a man beholding his natural face in a glass:

24For he beholdeth himself, and goeth his way, and straightway forgetteth what manner of man he was.

and 2 corinthians 3:18

18But we all, with open face beholding as in a glass the glory of the Lord, are changed into the same image from glory to glory, even as by the Spirit of the Lord.

about the Word of God being like a mirror, one that reflects Jesus when we look into it.

I came away from that conversation different, changed. in the same way the rains lately have revived the green life from the earth, so the Word has revived my spirit and my heart, and that of my beau. again I am reminded of another place in scripture that I love – isaiah 55:10-11. the whole chapter is amazing.

10For as the rain cometh down, and the snow from heaven, and returneth not thither, but watereth the earth, and maketh it bring forth and bud, that it may give seed to the sower, and bread to the eater:

11So shall my word be that goeth forth out of my mouth: it shall not return unto me void, but it shall accomplish that which I please, and it shall prosper in the thing whereto I sent it.

so this easter is significant this year. things have changed. we have rounded a corner.

Friday, April 22, 2011


what is spiritual warfare? that’s one of the first things the Lord taught me in my walk with Him. what it is, and how to do it. the lessons I learned then have held up every time, in the thirty years that have passed since.

first thing I learned was to put God’s Word first and last. the highest authority, and the final authority. that meant that no matter what my circumstances indicated, the Word of God overruled any conflicting conclusions.

this, then, is how the Word of God became the anchor for my soul. no matter what I see happening around me, or what is going on in my life, I can be stable and unmoved, like a little boat that’s anchored to a rock. God has made certain declarations about what He accomplished through Jesus’ death and resurrection, and promises about what He will do for those in covenant with Him which are guaranteed through that same death and resurrection. His Word never changes, so it is always certain, no matter how things may look. the only way to lose out on these promises is to give it away through unbelief.

so where is the warfare in that?

its in the pressures that assault the mind, and try to influence the emotions, to stir up fear and uncertainty that maybe this is too great, or maybe you did something to bring this on your own head, or maybe … and a whole bunch of religious conjecture. the pressure can be relentless. things will be said by others that will lead your attention to the circumstances, and will work toward discouraging you. things will seem to not happen to relieve the problems. you know how it can be.

the warfare, then, is to stand on the Word no matter what you see or hear to the contrary. you may have to speak the promises out loud to yourself over and over, if that’s what it takes to quiet your mind and turn it back to the Word that never changes. you may have to avoid discussing things with those with good intentions, but who want to explain why God is allowing you to go through this.

God doesn’t just step out of the way and let things happen. on the contrary, He has vanquished the enemy in three ways through the death and resurrection of Jesus. hebrews 3:14, 1 john 3:8, and colossians 2:15 is the proof. further more, He has put satan under our feet, giving us authority over him in Jesus’ name. He also gave us His own armor, His Word as a sword, and His faith as a shield. that doesn’t sound like someone who would then arbitrarily step aside and let us be attacked, or go though something. that sounds like Some One who armed us and equipped us to be able to overcome whatever gets thrown at us. that sounds like Some One who wants us to win.

so the deciding factor then is not God, but us.