Tuesday, February 26, 2013

The Prayer of Desperation

Jesus said to him, "If you can believe, all things are possible to him who believes." Immediately the father of the child cried out and said with tears, "Lord, I believe; help my unbelief!"
Mark 9:23-24 NKJV

This was a desperate plea of a father for his son. The son had been mute and having seizures or episodes since childhood and his dad was wanting his son healed in the worst way. He was pleading with Jesus to have compassion on them and to heal his son.

Jesus was good at showing compassion. After all, Jesus is love. Many times before in the gospels you read something like, "And Jesus was moved with compassion or Jesus had compassion on them." I love Jesus's response to the daddy, "If you can believe, all things are possible to him who believes." Now notice that Jesus didn't say, "If you sow the seed of faith in a monetary form, you will have breakthrough" No, Jesus told him that if he could believe...that all things are possible to him who believes. Now in my imagination I can see Jesus looking deep into the man's eyes and seeing his desperation, maybe reaching out to the man and touching his arm in reassurance.

The dad cried. Have you ever cried for your kids? I have. Jesus knew this man's heart, Jesus knew how long the kid had been having problems. Jesus showed compassion when He took time, to care, to ask the man about his son. The man answered ever so honestly with, "I believe but help my unbelief!" Did he have his doubts? You bet but he layed his doubts before the Lord. He cried out for help in those areas where he struggled!

The good part of the story is that Jesus prayed for the boy and the boy went from convulsing to laying perfectly still. Now the people that had gathered around, started whispering the worse, "He's dead!" That is when Jesus took the boy by the hand and lifted him up. Totally healed! How awesome!?!

Know that if you struggle with unbelief in any area of your life, it is okay. Take time to tell the Lord where you are struggling. He will take the time to listen to you. Hold on to the sliver of faith that you have! Jesus will increase that faith when you ask! He loves you so very much. The main thing is that you ASK! You don't have to wait to jump through so many hoops before you can pray. Praying is simply conversing with God. Talk to Him. Tell Him how you feel, He knows anyway! If you have never prayed before, know that you do not have to format your words in any certain format, just be real. When you start to see answers to your prayers there will always be some around you saying the worse possible things...do not believe them. Know that God is big and He heard your cries and He can do ANYTHING! One last thing, if someone tries to charge you money to pray for you or to have your prayer answered just say no thank you. It costs nothing to talk to God. And if you ever need prayer I would love to pray for you!

Shanin



Thursday, February 21, 2013

No Talk Time

32 That evening after sunset the people brought to Jesus all the sick and demon-possessed. 33 The whole town gathered at the door, 34 and Jesus healed many who had various diseases. He also drove out many demons, but he would not let the demons speak because they knew who he was.
Mark 1:32-34 NIV

Jesus was ministering in Capernaum. I have been to this very place in Capernaum, it is very beautiful. I got to stand in the place where Jesus taught. I saw where Peter and Andrew’s house was and it was pretty close to the synagogue. I loved the big lush palms that have grown and surround the remains of the town. This was the place where Jesus taught in the synagogue with authority. I loved being in Capernaum, seeing the place where I had read about so many times before in the Bible.

Earlier in verse 24 it says, “What do you want with us, Jesus of Nazareth? Have you come to destroy us? I know who you are—the Holy One of God!” Jesus silenced the demonic spirit immediately. He then cast out the evil spirit. The news soon spread and that evening people from all of Galilee brought the sick and demon-possessed to Jesus. In verse 34 it says that, “Jesus healed many who had various diseases. He also drove out many demons, but he would not let the demons speak because they knew who he was.”

If Jesus didn’t let the evil spirits speak then why would we ever entertain them? Yet people think it is fun entertainment to let their children play with Ouija Boards at slumber parties or listen to mediums “talk to the dead?” I have seen psychics advertised on the television to read your future for a mere $1.00 a minute. That is $60.00 an hour! The world gladly accepts the supernatural yet the very same people think it is crazy for people to hear from God.

Jesus wouldn’t let the demons speak! He silenced them. These spirits even recognized Jesus as the Holy One of God. If evil can recognized Jesus how come we struggle with giving Jesus recognition of being Lord?

Let’s make sure that we don’t give any room to the demonic in our lives today. The only supernatural I want to walk in, is in the light of Jesus. Nothing edifying comes from entertaining evil so model after Jesus and silence any evil spirits. Do not give them any talk time J I want to silence the enemy at every intersection to make way for the focus on Jesus and His greatness.

Shanin

Tuesday, February 19, 2013

Bartimaeus, the Man who wouldn't be hushed:)

46 Now they came to Jericho. As He went out of Jericho with His disciples and a great multitude, blind Bartimaeus, the son of Timaeus, sat by the road begging. 47 And when he heard that it was Jesus of Nazareth, he began to cry out and say, “Jesus, Son of David, have mercy on me!” 48 Then many warned him to be quiet; but he cried out all the more, “Son of David, have mercy on me!”
49 So Jesus stood still and commanded him to be called. Then they called the blind man, saying to him, “Be of good cheer. Rise, He is calling you.” 50 And throwing aside his garment, he rose and came to Jesus. 51 So Jesus answered and said to him, “What do you want Me to do for you?” The blind man said to Him, “Rabboni, that I may receive my sight.” 52 Then Jesus said to him, “Go your way; your faith has made you well.” And immediately he received his sight and followed Jesus on the road. Mark 10:46-52 NKJ


I love the story of Blind Bart. First of all he cried out to Jesus. They warned him to be quiet but he yelled even louder. He was desperate, what did he have to lose? Jesus stood still and had him called! Jesus heard him...he heard his desperate cries.

I love this next part...Bart threw aside his garment and rose and came to Jesus. He threw off his garment...he stepped out of his comfort zone...he knew what he wanted/needed and he asked, "Rabboni, that I may receive my sight."

Do you realise that you need Him so much that you will cry out? Even when they try to hush your cries, will you cry out even more? Will you not let anything stand in your way of Him? Will you throw off your coverings or garments, expose who you really are with all of your problems to Him? Will you ask for His help?

He will hear your cries. He won't reject you. He will heal your hurts, injuries or disabilites. He loves you...and me.

The best part I saved for last...not only did Jesus hear and heal him but Bart (who was no longer blind Bart but a new improved Bart...a new creation) followed Jesus on the road! Who knows maybe Bart got a new nickname...Roadie Bart? Or Bart, the guy that used to be a blind beggar? Or Bart the follower of Jesus?

Tuesday, February 5, 2013

You Can Be Used For God's Glory!

18 And when He got into the boat, he who had been demon-possessed begged Him that he might be with Him. 19 However, Jesus did not permit him, but said to him, “Go home to your friends, and tell them what great things the Lord has done for you, and how He has had compassion on you.” 20 And he departed and began to proclaim in Decapolis all that Jesus had done for him; and all marveled. Mark 5:18-20

Before the superbowl game on Sunday I was watching the interview with Ray Lewis. Ray has recently declared that he is now a follower of Christ. (Please know that I am not here to argue whether he is saved or not. I am excited that He now claims Christ as his Savior.) During his interview they were questioning him on his participation or involvement in a January 2000 fight that resulted in an indictment on murder and aggravated assault charges. He was never convicted of these charges but on a charge of obstruction of justice. Okay the part that disturbed me was his response, “If you really knew how God works, he don’t use people who commit anything like that for his glory.”

I am here to tell you that God has and still does really use people who have committed horrible sins! Let me use the apostle Paul for an example. Paul was known as Saul before his conversion to Christ and he was famous for persecuting Christians. He was at Stephen's execution (well he was killed by stoning.) Paul wrote a huge chunk of the New Testament! He ministered to many!

In this passage of scripture that I listed above if you look up Mark 5 and read the verses leading up to this portion you will read about a crazy demon possessed man! They couldn't even keep him confined in chains and shackles because he would break them! Can you say insanity? Yet when this same man fell at Jesus feet to worship Him and Jesus healed him and did deliverance this same man was sent home to tell his friends about the Lord. The Lord used him! It says in verse 20 that he left that day and shared Jesus in Decapolis! And all marveled.

I don't care what Ray Lewis thinks but Jesus can use anyone who is willing to be used. He can lift anyone up out of their pit of circumstances and use them for HIS GLORY! Amen? Jesus is our Redeemer! He pardoned us when He died on the cross. He knew what we would do and died for our sins before we even committed them! He is awesome.

So please do not let anyone tell you that you are disqualified for ministry because of your past. Now some of your consequences might hinder you, but you can be used to bring God glory! Jesus forgives and restores! He is in the restoration business:)

I am not counting you out, and neither is God!

Shanin