Thursday, May 1, 2014
The 2014 National Observance of the National Day of Prayer - from the Cannon House Office Building in Washington, D.C. (Repeat video)
Here's Why Not to Give Up
by Heidi Baker
Sometimes we feel foolish dreaming the sorts of dreams God puts in our hearts. Our truest dreams always look too big for us.
We may be afraid of how bizarre we will look trying to achieve them. We might start out trying to paddle a kayak alone to islands many miles away only to find the task much harder than we ever knew. Nonetheless, we can be confident that He who began a good work in us will bring it to completion (Phil. 1:6).
Scripture says Paul prayed for the church to have patience and endurance (Col. 1:11). Sometimes we give up too quickly. I might have given up when my kayak idea turned out to be laughably inadequate. I might have given up when our first real boat sunk and we found ourselves shipwrecked.
Never mind the boats - I might have given up on Mozambique in general many times before that. I might have given up when people shot at me or when gangs were chasing me. I might have given up when we were in deep psychological distress after friends of ours in the Congo were dismembered with machetes in a church. I might have given up when I was reported in the newspapers as a drug dealer because of mistaken results at a lab, where they were testing some vitamins that were donated to us. I might have given up on the fifth, sixth or seventh occasion when crowds began to stone me for preaching about Jesus.
Most especially, I might have given up when my husband, Rolland, got cerebral malaria and suffered a series of microstrokes that almost killed him. Though he was eventually healed, for two years he lost his short-term memory and was totally unable to function in ministry or administration.
The only reason I did not give up any of these times was because I know the One who placed His promises within me. When you know Him intimately, you never give up, because He is worthy!
Being Overshadowed by God
You have to wait a long time for some promises. I was 16 when the Lord told me I had a destiny in Africa, Asia and England. It took me over 20 years before I reached Mozambique and began to step into that piece of my calling.
Truthfully, I am being overshadowed more now than I have ever been before. At times it is still very uncomfortable. There are days when I feel terribly stretched as God's promises grow within me, but even those days are a joy because I long to birth what God has given me.
Continue to carry your promises faithfully. Nurture them as they grow. It does not matter how old you are. It is never too late. The Lord wants to take you beyond who you are and what you can do. God is the One who can take a barren woman in her old age and make her fruitful for the first time, just as the angel told Mary: "Even Elizabeth your relative is going to have a child in her old age, and she who was said to be unable to conceive is in her sixth month. For no word from God will ever fail" (Luke 1:36-37, NIV).
Two things will come from being overshadowed. The first is a particular promise from God that is naturally impossible to fulfill. The second is a general promise from God that nothing is impossible with Him.
Our God is the God of the impossible. He can take a barren ministry and breathe His Spirit into it. Even in your old age, He can breathe over you and cause you to bear a ministry, a promise or a revelation - a beautiful gift that will carry His glory to the ends of the earth. He can take the most barren and broken life - even the kind of life that has aborted its own promises many times - and in it plant a glorious new promise, along with all the strength needed to carry it to full term.
We have a mighty calling to carry God's heart and to reveal His glorious love to the world. None of us can fully imagine or expect what the Lord has for us or what the journey to its fulfillment will look like. I don't think Mary was expecting to carry a child before she was married or to give birth to the Son of God. She could never have anticipated the magnitude of the call or the price she would have to pay.
If we are wise, we will make the choice to say yes to God many times a day. We say yes to taking the time to worship, to having a positive attitude, to releasing people, to stopping for people when we might be in a hurry, to trusting God for a seemingly impossible financial situation. Our yes is a daily choice. There is a daily sacrifice and a daily joy as we participate in God's dreams for this world. As we do this, we participate with Jesus in the sacrifices He too made for the joy that was set before Him. What an awesome privilege!
This article was adapted from Birthing the Miraculous (click to order) by Heidi Baker.
By Heidi Baker
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- Now Think On This
by Steve Martin
“Then I heard the voice of the Lord, saying, "Whom shall I send, and who will go for Us?" Then I said, "Here am I. Send me!" Isaiah 6:8 NAS
What if God said something to you today, yes even today, that might totally catch you off guard? Out of the blue comes that still, small voice speaking into your spirit. You had no expectancy. No clue. No advance warning. He just spoke.
Has it happened before? Well, let’s see. Saul on the way to Damascus? Moses and the burning bush in the desert? Maybe a little more dramatic for most of us, but it happened.
So let’s start with something more down to “our level.”
During the night, while sound asleep, a dream occurs. Normally you don’t remember your dreams, or if you do, you put it off as just another thought that just so happened to occur during the hours of 3 am - 5 am and you can only remember a few details about it.
But you do remember part of the dream where there was movement going on in your life, and with that night time thought it actually put an expectation of something good coming your way. Was it God? Was He speaking to you, catching you when you didn’t have the other 100 thoughts running through your stressed mind? Maybe so. It has happened. It will happen.
Many people are hesitate in listening to God - they are afraid He will say to them, “Go to Africa.” Or maybe this, “Share your testimony with Rachel,” whom you already know would never want to know of it anyway, or so you have already told yourself many times already when the thought came.
God is speaking today. He didn’t quit speaking and creating after the six days were done. He didn’t just sit down on a big heavenly lounge chair, letting the world go on by itself, from that point forward. He is actively involved in the matters of the nations, of the cities, of the lives of each individual, whether they want to recognize Him or not. His love over rules their lack of it.
The Lord is setting up His final plans and purposes for the redemption of the nations. After sending His Only Son Jesus Christ, Yeshua HaMashiach, the first time, He has been preparing for His return. God the Father has been active in the lives of all through the centuries, revealing Himself in countless ways – through dreams, visions, His mighty acts of creation. Even through the many countless wars and unrest occurring on all the continents, God Almighty is continually trying to reach you and I. He is speaking.
And what if God spoke a directive to you today? It will be His attempt to further reveal His perfect plan, that He wants you to participate in. He is preparing for that coming movement just up the road, that is certainly coming, that you need to be involved in. Would you know of it? Would you act on it?
Would you respond as Isaiah did, when we read this, “And then I heard the voice of the Master: “Whom shall I send? Who will go for us?” I spoke up, “I’ll go. Send me!” (Isaiah 6:8, The Message)
Would you say as Mary did, “Yes, I see it all now: I’m the Lord’s maid, ready to serve. Let it be with me just as you say.” (Luke 1:38, The Message)
In order for the Lord’s will to be done, there must be a people willing to hear and obey, to go when He says go; to walk where He says walk; to speak when He says speak. To move when He says move.
Many are weary with the life they are living, or the challenges they daily face. But as my good friend Morris Ruddick says, “There is something more.” He even wrote a book with the same title. Because there is.
Many of you are looking for an adventure, out of the routine, and have been prepared, ready to act upon the acts of God. I know am.
I encourage you today to be listening, to be expecting, to be watching for that rhema word, that NOW action word from the Lord - for you. And then when God speaks…
Now think on this,
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Now Think On This #147 “When God Speaks” by Steve Martin
Date: In the year of our Lord 2014 (05.01.14) Thursday at 7:45am in Charlotte, NC.
All previous editions of Now Think On This can be found on this Blog, and on our newest website: Now Think On This