Sunday, October 28, 2007

You Need This

I apologize for the length of time it has taken me to write this. Some of you have contacted me to say, "I need you to write something. I need a message." For that, I thank you. Sometimes, okay, maybe a lot of times, I need encouragement to know what I'm doing through this blog has a purpose. Once again, it's not that God hasn't been speaking to me. It has been quite the opposite. I have been so overwhelmed with messages, visions, scriptures, prophecies and promises, it has been like being drowned in a Spiritual Tsunami. With not enough hours in the day since beginning my new job, I have only to continue to take mental notes, spiritual notes and wait to see what theme bubbles to the surface.

Well, the theme has bubbled. The theme is you.

I have come to the realization that if you're in my life, you're there for a reason. If I'm in you're life, I'm here for a purpose as well. God is using each of us and our connection with one another for a purpose and I'm about to step into mine.

The Spiritual Tsunami that I have been experiencing has been yet another time of transformation for me. I had been going through a time of being a "shrinking violet," if you will - a wallflower. Once again a spirit of fear had gripped my life. I found myself desiring a boldness through Christ but not being able to step into that boldness. Well... no more.

Long before Brother Tim Hines and Pastor Bond began preaching on John 7:38 - "He that believeth in me, out of him shall flow rivers of living water," that same scripture had been laid on my heart through my email devotional. With new boldness through only the power of Christ, I'm here to tell all of you who don't know Jesus like I know Jesus, I'm here to bring you living water.

You know who you are. You are a person in my life who has been struggling to find a job. You're about to lose your house and everything you've worked for. You've been diagnosed with a debilitating disease. You're going through an unwanted divorce. You lost your job recently -unfairly and with little explanation. You consider yourself a Christian but the Devil has been lying to you about people who surround you, convincing you that we're all a bunch of hypocrites which fills you with anger and turns your heart away from the church.

You know who you are and I'm using this forum given by God to speak to you. Because I know that sometimes God will bring you to your knees just so you get on your knees.

When God wants you in His will, He'll do whatever it takes to get you there. You think by turning your back on God, you're safe? Forget it. This is God we're talking about. As Bill Cosby use to say to his children, "I put you in this world, I can take you out." If you're still here, you should be praising God that He's giving you one more chance to get your life back on track, 'cause you could be dead. You could be in Hell with no chance of seeing Heaven. But God's calling you up one more time, right now.

Some of you are thinking, "Yeah, Whatever. She hasn't seen what I've seen. She hasn't lived what I've lived. She hasn't been where I've been. She hasn't done what I've done." Well, let me tell you something... two weeks ago I sobbed on the altar of my church because I was afraid to share my own testimony. I have been to some dark places. I have seen some ugly things. I have been despicable - DE-SPIC-A-BLE in the eyes of God - so despicable, in fact, that I fear if I share with you just one of the multitude of sins I have been entrapped in, you would have no respect for me. But I am reminded of one of my favorite T-shirt/bumper sticker slogans: "The next time the devil reminds you of your past, remind him of his future." So I move forward, rejoicing that I have been forgiven and delivered from all of the ugliness, from all of the emptiness and from all of the darkness. Because I have known poverty of both means and spirit, I am here to promise you that your abundance is waiting. Because I have known brokenness of mind, body and spirit, I am here to tell you that your healing is near.

Isaiah 61
"1 The Spirit of the Lord GOD is upon me, Because the LORD has anointed me To bring good news to the afflicted; He has sent me to bind up the brokenhearted, To proclaim liberty to captives And freedom to prisoners; 2 To proclaim the favorable year of the LORD And the day of vengeance of our God; To comfort all who mourn, 3 To grant those who mourn {in} Zion, Giving them a garland instead of ashes, The oil of gladness instead of mourning, The mantle of praise instead of a spirit of fainting. So they will be called oaks of righteousness, The planting of the LORD, that He may be glorified.

4 Then they will rebuild the ancient ruins, They will raise up the former devastations; And they will repair the ruined cities, The desolations of many generations.

5 Strangers will stand and pasture your flocks, And foreigners will be your farmers and your vinedressers.

6 But you will be called the priests of the LORD; You will be spoken of {as} ministers of our God. You will eat the wealth of nations, And in their riches you will boast.

7 Instead of your shame {you will have a} double {portion,} And {instead of} humiliation they will shout for joy over their portion. Therefore they will possess a double {portion} in their land, Everlasting joy will be theirs.

8 For I, the LORD, love justice, I hate robbery in the burnt offering; And I will faithfully give them their recompense And make an everlasting covenant with them.

9 Then their offspring will be known among the nations, And their descendants in the midst of the peoples. All who see them will recognize them Because they are the offspring {whom} the LORD has blessed.

10 I will rejoice greatly in the LORD, My soul will exult in my God; For He has clothed me with garments of salvation, He has wrapped me with a robe of righteousness, As a bridegroom decks himself with a garland, And as a bride adorns herself with her jewels.

11 For as the earth brings forth its sprouts, And as a garden causes the things sown in it to spring up, So the Lord GOD will cause righteousness and praise to spring up before all the nations. "

God wants you for His own. God desires you for His will. He will not rest until you relinquish every last bit of what you think is your power, to Him.

So, if you hear me, get on your knees and praise Him right now. Praise Him in the midst of your storm. I've learned that when the storms are raging, if you praise His name, your praises go up and part those storm clouds and the blessings come down.

Praise Him because you know He hasn't forgotten you. Praise Him because He has not cast you aside. Praise Him because you could be dead, but He came that you might have life and have it abundantly.

There's still time.

Before I close, I have to share with you that now is not the time to be stubborn. Now is not the time to say, "Eh, I don't need God right now." NOW is the time for you to take this seriously.

How funny it is to me that God has put me in a position where I feel like I'm begging each of you to come to God - you who have known God, you who chose to walk away, when just last week I met a 17 year-old girl who, within 20 minutes of talking to me said, "I want to know who Jesus is." She is a new Chinese immigrant and works at her parents' restaurant. Mae Ling was the first person ever put in my path who made it easy for me to share Jesus out of her pure, innocent desire to know. She heard about Jesus and wanted to know what Jesus could do in her life.

You have learned, but yet you continue to reject Him. Spin your wheels all you want, but you'll go nowhere without Him.

Now's the time.

I feel like maybe you're again thinking, "Who does this woman think she is speaking like this?" Well, I wrote this two days ago on paper. This morning, I had an overwhelming vision of brokenness across this country. I saw men addicted to drugs, women recovering from abortions, children growing up fatherless. I was reminded that I live in the shadow of the Big House - I live on the reservation of the United States Penitentiary at Lewisburg and realized this morning that I am less than 1/2 mile from sin and disparity like you'll never know 1400 times over. I prayed to God, "Heal them, Lord, change the hardened hearts of men. Come down like rain to reveal yourself and transform these lives." There was a moment of silence and then I heard, loud and clear, "That's your job."

Here I am Lord, send me.