Matthew 10:7-8

"And as you go, preach, saying, 'The kingdom of heaven is at hand.' Heal the sick, cleanse the lepers, raise the dead, cast out demons. Freely you have received, freely give."

Thursday, October 28, 2010

RISE AND SHINE.....IT'S LIFE CHANGING TIME

Last week I wrote a little bit about waking up. How there are many who have became kind of "ho-hum" in their Christian walk. I'm not being critical. This happened to me for several years, especially at one point in my life. It's just that around 10 years ago I started waking up. It was through a Vineyard Church that we were attending in Parma Heights, Ohio where the stirring began. Through their pastor, Rick Evans and the many solid believers in the church, I started to re-learn to expect the unexpected from God. To not settle for the "I've seen everything that God wants to do in my life" attitude. Everything in my being woke up to the idea that Jesus, being the author (or originator)and finisher (or perfecter) of my walk of faith, wasn't done writing my life. A good author is always looking to write something new or fresh. JESUS IS A GREAT AUTHOR! He isn't finished with you either, no matter what your age or background.

If you have been slumbering, wake up! Join with me in running this great race. These are the days of grace. I believe that God, in only the way that God can, is somehow making an extension of even more grace for anyone who wants or needs it right now. God reminded me earlier this week that not only did He give me one very powerful dream about grace being poured out from Heaven, (which I described in great detail here) but He's given me two. Earlier this year while in Wilmington, North Carolina I had the first. I also had mentioned that dream in a June blog post about dreams and visions, although I didn't go into great detail. At the right time I will, but that isn't today. Just a few evenings ago a friend shared a prophetic email that he had received about much grace for the town in which we live. God wants to do that all around the world and in every nation. I think of how on payday we often fill up our vehicle gas tanks. "Payday" is here for you today. Start getting filled up!

Now can I tell you something that is really, really, really, really cool? It is possible for you to realize that God wants to do new and creative things through you, but here is the really, really, really cool part. God desires to begin to reveal to you what those things are!!!!! He may not reveal them to you completely,(He can) but He is willing to begin to give you hints, clues, or indications. Listen, here it is. Keep your eyes and ears open.

Oh how I love the New King James translation, but I'll splash this to you using the New Living Translation. We will start with 1 Corinthians 2:9, but then let revelation explode to you beginning in verse 10. Ready???!!!!!!

"This is what the scriptures mean when they say, 'No eye has seen, no ear has heard and no mind has imagined what God has prepared for those who love Him.' (10-12) But we KNOW these things because God has REVEALED them to us by His spirit, and His spirit searches out everything and SHOWS us even GOD'S DEEP SECRETS. No one can know what anyone else is really thinking except that person alone and no one can know God's thoughts except God's own spirit. And God has ACTUALLY GIVEN US His spirit (not the world's spirit)so WE CAN KNOW the wonderful things God has freely given us." (emphasis added on what I feel are some key words.)

Wow, you actually need to read the rest of that chapter, but WOW!!!! Read it again and let it sink in. God has stuff that He wants to do through you and give to you and reveal to you that you don't even know about yet, but the Holy Spirit WILL begin to reveal them to you. There are revelations that I have received and gifts that I am operating in that just a few years ago I would not have thought would have been possible. The same with my wonderful blue eyed wife, Kay. I will share with you just one of the things that God has developed in her. Often while prayer is going on she will see a picture, a literal picture, a prophetic picture about what God is doing or wants to do regarding who or what is being prayed for. To be really honest I was always a bit envious (ok, quite a bit envious!) of how the Holy Spirit allows her to see pictures like that, so I started asking God to do that for me, too and it's actually starting to happen once in awhile. Not like it happens for Kay, but it is still pretty sweet. There are gifts and abilities like this just lying dormant inside of all of us waiting to come alive. Waiting to be used for His purposes.

I think it's really important that we all desire the spiritual gifts, maybe more than ever. Not for our own glory, but for God's and so we can bless others. There are lots and lots of people who are looking for answers and needing ministered to in desperate ways. This is only going to keep increasing. Look at everything that is going on in the world. We need to be as fully equipped with God stuff as much as possible. The bonus in all this is that this stuff is REALLY, REALLY fun, too. God doesn't expect us to be so serious all the time. He gave us the gift of laughter and the Bible often speaks of great joy in the Lord. Enjoy your walk with Jesus. I know that I surely am.

I'm being really serious with you when I say that if we all began to live up to the potential that God has for us, we would turn our neighborhoods and governments upside down. God is waiting for people like you and me to lead the way. At prayer tonight there was repentance for having little faith and small expectations. New standards have been set; the bar is being raised.

Don't let the snooze button go off even one more time. "Arise, shine; for your Light has come! And the glory of the Lord is risen upon you."

All For Jesus,
Mark S.

Thursday, October 21, 2010

WAKE UP, SLEEPIES

Philip found Nathanael and said to him, "We have found Him of whom Moses in the law and also the prophets wrote, Jesus of Nazareth, the son of Joseph." And Nathanael said to him, "Can anything good come out of Nazareth?" Philip said to him, "Come and see." Jesus saw Nathanael coming toward Him and said of him, "Behold, an Israelite indeed, in whom is no deceit!" Nathanael said to Him, "How do You know me?" Jesus answered and said to him, "Before Philip called you, when you were under the fig tree, I saw you." Nathanael answered and said to Him, "Rabbi, You are the Son of God! You are the King of Israel!" Jesus answered and said to Him, "Because I said to you, 'I saw you under the fig tree,' do you believe? YOU WILL SEE GREATER THINGS THAN THESE." (John 1:45-50, NKJV)

"Most assuredly, I say to you, he who believes in Me, the works that I do he will do also; and GREATER WORKS THAN THESE he will do, because I go to My Father." (John 14:12, NKJV)

I believe that the Lord is wanting us to know that the time is ripe for the "greater things." However, there are many who have allowed their relationship with Christ to become very ordinary and without expectation of the miraculous. It has become like riding a bicycle. You get on and don't even put any thought into what you need to do to make it go. In other words, riding a bike for us is a very routine thing to do. Now on one hand it should be very normal and automatic that we allow the Lord into our lives everyday, but the way we interact with Him should never become routine. There should always be a level of expectancy. Jesus wants us to learn and do new things all the time. There is a trap that we can fall into where we start thinking that we have seen all that God will do in our lives. I have even heard people say, "I will never lead anyone to Christ." Not because they don't want to, but because they've never experienced it, so they stop believing it to be possible. When we start thinking like that I believe our own mindset can even start limiting God from working in our lives the way He wants to. I'm thinking of the scripture where Jesus "could do no mighty work there, except that He laid His hands on a few sick people and healed them. And He marveled because of their unbelief." (Mark 6:5-6, NKJV)

Here in the town where I live, Madison, Ohio, there are a group of guys that get together on Wednesday nights to pray and intercede for our town and surrounding communities. I love that time because we are not afraid to pray for extraordinary events that are lined up in the Kingdom and just waiting to be released. I had just finished praying last night for believers that are stuck in a rut in their Christian walk, much like I just described. No sooner had I prayed for God to stir their hearts and give them new dreams, when He caught me off guard by challenging me. God will always do His part, but in creating us God desires for us to be His ambassadors and spokespeople. He wants us to do what Jesus would do if He were in bodily form on this earth today. Jesus reached out to people. He loved and with great compassion. I heard God speaking to my spirit, "You need to do your part, too. It's the easy way out to ask Me to just do it, but I have given you the ability to speak into peoples lives. Be an encourager and I will be faithful. Tell them that the greater things are soon to come."

Around the same time as I was praying, another brother started speaking out what God was showing him. He said that God was showing him that it was time to start casting our nets on the other side of the boat. Some have been fishing off the same side of the boat for way too long. Some have become trapped in the same routine in ministry and personal walks with Christ day in and day out. We've stopped looking for new and fresh things. (I've interjected some of my thoughts along with his from last night.) It's time to change things up, allow ourselves to be stretched and see what happens when we fish off the other side of the boat, or in deeper waters. (For more of this fishing and dropping nets please refer to the fun stories found in Luke 5:1-11 and John 21.)

I guess in trying to bring everything together, I think that God is saying, "Wake up, sleepies!" (For those "Lord of the Ring" addicts, that quote just made you laugh, or at least smile...........admit it! At least humor me and tell me it did.) Yes, I think God wants to stir us up, shake us up and get us excited about Who we have living inside of us. Become the mountain mover that God wants you to be. Have you thought lately about the same Spirit living inside of you which raised Christ from the dead? Dull and routine? I think not! "CHRIST IN YOU, the hope of glory." Jesus, the Man who spoke calm to the winds and waves, the Man who raised Lazarus from the dead, the Man who opened eyes to sight, the Man who said to the crippled, "Rise, take up your bed and walk" and the Man who prayed, "Father, forgive them, they don't know what they do." That MAN lives in YOU!

Expecting greater things,
Mark S.

Thursday, October 14, 2010

GREAT ENCOURAGEMENT FOUND ALONG THE ROMANS ROAD!

From just off the shores of Lake Erie, I send you greetings! Once again, I hope you are found to be well and if things could be better for you I send my prayer covering. I know that may just sound like a bunch of idle words to score some points, but I promise that they are not. Quite often I pray for my readers and if I happen to log on and see that someone is currently on the blog I will go to the Lord in prayer for you and speak blessings over you. I hope you do the same for me when you are here and if there is something that I write which you don't agree with, we should pray about that, too. We should always ask God for more insight and wisdom and if our understanding needs to be clearer or change then let it be so. I learned several years ago that if I'm not willing to change then I'm not willing to grow! That's how we strengthen our community of believers. Anyway, I sure am glad you are here!!!!!!!

I've been slowly reading the book of Romans lately. This is a book which you just can't rush through, especially those first 5 chapters or so. I wouldn't encourage the brand new believer to read Romans right away, but there is so much to be gleaned from Paul's letter to the believers in Rome. There are so many golden nuggets along the way.

As seems to be the case more often than not anymore, last night I slept for a couple of hours and woke up. Instead of fighting to go back to sleep (which is a fight that I usually lose) I stumbled out to the kitchen table and began to read. "There is therefore now no condemnation to those who are in Christ Jesus, who do not walk according to the flesh, but according to the Spirit." (Romans 8:1, NKJ) (Before I go on, I do want to mention that if you have a NIV Bible, the verse ends with "....who are in Christ Jesus." Some of the earlier manuscripts did not include...."who do not walk according to the flesh......." With that noted, however, I do feel that much personal growth can be obtained by the verse as it is found in the NKJ.) Now before I could get to verse 2, something struck me about that verse that made me think about it a little more deeply than I ever had. We use the first part of that verse quite often to encourage a believer who doesn't feel worthy of God's love; maybe has admitted that they sinned or messed up. Even though God forgives, they still don't feel clean. It is and rightfully so, one of the most well loved verses in the Bible. What struck me last night, though, was the second half of that verse in the NKJ. "......who do not walk ACCORDING TO THE FLESH, but ACCORDING TO THE
SPIRIT.
"
Wow, that is good stuff to think on. We easily love the first part of the verse. After all God is allowing us to benefit from His most magnificent grace in doing something for us. The second half of that verse though, I can do something for myself which will bring me closer to my Lord, build up my inner man and allow me to reap even more of His benefits. I started thinking about why we do what we do; the choices that we make and are they choices driven from flesh or from the Spirit? Now I'm not talking so much about the things in life that we do for enjoyment or leisure. God wants us to enjoy life and have things like that. An example for me would be taking my family to a Pirates or Indians game, or because of the time of year it is, a Pittsburgh Penguins (who by the way will be the 2010/2011 Stanley Cup Champions even if they are off to a slow start) hockey game. As we live for the Lord, He wants us to do things that as His children we will just simply enjoy. God wants you to enjoy life, so if you're not, GET TO IT!!!!!!! :)

As I read that verse last night, I began thinking about decisions we make that can hinder, or slow down our walk and growth in Christ. I'll give you an example and being of the male gender, I will give you probably one of the best examples that men need to be reminded of (let the wives and girlfriends now rejoice.....ha ha ha). Here we go. GUYS; if we are walking according to the Spirit and NOT the flesh, it means that when an attractive woman is walking down the sidewalk on the other side of the street, you DO NOT allow your eyes the "fleshly" pleasure of glancing her way a second or third time! Even though your thoughts were hopefully pure when you first saw her, a second look could give foothold to not so pure thoughts. If a not so pure thought would set in, we all know that lust is a work of the flesh. We know that lust is a work of the flesh, because we know that Galations 5:19 reads: "Now the works of the flesh are evident, which are: adultery (Jesus addressed the heart issue with that), fornication (sexual immorality), uncleanness.........................."On the other hand, SELF CONTROL is a fruit of the Spirit. (See Galations 5:22-23) That is just one easy example of flesh vs. Spirit.

Ladies, don't think for one minute that you are off the hook. Now let me go after you!.......Oh, on second thought, never mind. At 48 I've learned enough to know that you don't make unwise choices that could cut your life short!!!!! :)

Even though I am feeling very light hearted and find myself laughing a bit as I write this, I think that Lord gave me a pretty solid teaching to share last night. We all need challenged when it comes to things of the flesh. We all have areas to improve on. Tempers, selfishness, laziness, jealousies, gossip and impure thoughts are just surface scratching. If we can keep these things of the flesh under the control of the Spirit, Jesus keeps drawing us in even closer to Himself! It opens up the floodgates for the Holy Spirit to keep blessing us with more insight and wisdom. It also allows us to live a life that will become compelling to people around us. We will be like magnets to people who need encouragement, or a word from the Lord. People who need the Savior, accepted and loved for who they are. I think this is why Paul said, "But I discipline my body and bring it into subjection, lest, when I have preached to others, I myself should become disqualified" in his letter to the Corinthians. In other words, Paul didn't want to be a hypocrite. Walking in the Spirit keeps that from happening.

I have to share a personal experience with you which I'm sure will bring future victory celebrations. One day not too long ago, probably within the last couple of weeks, I was having kind of a "down" day. I was off my game a little bit and either the devil or one of his henchmen thought it would be a good time to take advantage of me. Suddenly I found myself faced with some tempting thoughts. Well, the plan backfired. I cast them aside and rebuked the enemy. As I was about to just move on with the day, God stopped me and this is what I heard! "Oh no, no, no, no you don't. You need to stop and celebrate what just happened. Do you remember times when you gave in to temptations and then badly beat yourself up for giving in? Now celebrate this victory." And then I had a picture of God rejoicing over me which completely changed my outlook for the rest of the day. I think God is weary watching His kids get swallowed up in that "I'm just a wretched sinner" mentality. It was pretty significant for me to hear God say, "YOU badly beat yourself up." I was doing the beating, not God. If you need to be forgiven of something, God is pleased to give it and then wants you to move on and become a better person for that gift of grace. I'm sure He trusts that you learned from your mistake and will not do it again. God doesn't have us as His children to constantly beat us up. He loves us. If I was constantly ripping on Matthew and beating him up I would be arrested for child abuse. God would NEVER be arrested for child abuse. He is Abba, Father, Papa!

I tell you that story to encourage you, just in case while reading this you thought of an area in your life where you have failed and the devil is trying to condemn you. Hey, I know it happens. I want you to start thinking about the times when you have pleased the Father. When you have overcome evil with good. When you have "done unto the least of these." satan condems; God brings grace and forgiveness. Rejoice today! Celebrate the life you have in Christ. You have destiny and purpose! Jesus has chosen YOU!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! That my friend, makes you a history maker! Now, don't you dare leave this blog without listening to the words of the Hillsong video that comes right after I say goodbye. As you allow the words to absorb into your heart, this song will allow our Lord to dance over YOU with singing. Oh how I hope to preach on that Zephaniah 3 passage one day soon. Also, while you are listening, you can scroll down to the "Think Tank" and feed my fish. They are feeling hungry and neglected.

God is dancing over you today! He has saved you! "He will rejoice over you with gladness, He will quiet you with His love, He will rejoice over you with singing." (Zephaniah 3:17, but make sure you get your Bible and read that entire glorious passage beginning with verse 14 and finishing with verse 20. It parallels our Romans 8:1 verse incredibly!) God is passionately in love with you.

If today you have never said "Yes" to Jesus, today is your day! Salvation has come to your door.

For the prize,
Mark S.

History Maker - Hillsong London

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

SHOOTING SACRED COWS

"The primary context for faith to emerge isn't a class on Christian doctrine taught by an expert. The context is an ACTIVE ENGAGEMENT with the world in need of repair." (Ken Wilson, Sr. Pastor of the Vineyard Church of Ann Arbor, Michigan)

I'm not one to memorize a lot of quotes, especially from books, but in the above quote I have found one that has struck my heart more than any other in recent memory and it will be committed to memorization. In reading his book "Jesus Brand Spirituality" I believe that Ken Wilson understands the movement that needs to emerge in order to right a very unbalanced world. I really hope not to offend the highly intellectual pastor or priest in this post, but I probably will. I have nothing against education or theology. I believe that the more education we have the better for us. However, if education (especially where Christianity is involved) is not balanced with "active engagement" with people in our communities then it is futile.

I have never believed in using this blog to get on my personal soap box, but this time will be the exception. I've had enough of the religious leaders who can debate someone into a corner, but when they see a lost, hurting, or dirty looking person in a corner they seem to develop selective eyesight. I'm going to be brutality honest in saying that I am trying to also distance myself from the ways of the traditional church as much as possible. Please hear me when I say "the ways" of the traditional church. The church, traditional church or not, is still the church, the bride of Christ. I will continue to pray for and bless our churches to become completely Holy Spirit lead and Christ centered. However, a lot of churches need to do some serious changing and if they refuse to do this there are going to be a lot of churches and even some denominations in serious trouble. I don't want to see that. I instead desire to see the great awakening that I do often talk about.

Let's be honest, when it comes to religion or Christianity, the average person in the neighborhood could care less about how many degrees we have behind our name, or the theology of all the different denominations. Those things are easily forgotten. You allow the average person in the neighborhood watch you walk in the footsteps of Jesus, though and they will take notice. They maybe could care less about your faith at the time, but it has been seen over and over who they go to when a crisis or illness hits. How many times I have heard comments from people who aren't followers of Christ say something like, "Hey, I know you like to pray.................."

I am not intending this time of ours to become a book endorsement. It's just that I have enjoyed Ken Wilson's book so much that I want to share some of his ideas and thoughts with you. Wilson talks about what He calls, in his words, "Jesus brand spirituality" which is really just an attempt to get us to return to a level of spirituality that parallels the way that Jesus lived. Can we again be honest? If Jesus was wanting to attend a church in 2010, (oh wait He actually does that) do you really think that He would be happy with a weekly quota of songs, an offering, announcements and a sermon, come hell or high water, while the man who just lost his dad, the wife who feels like dying because her husband walked out on her, the children who just lost a mom to cancer, or the couple who is desperate because this will be the week they lose their house, walks out the door the way they came in without being cared for or ministered to? You know as well as I that Jesus would have scoffed at that. Who was that group that he often was critical of because they were more concerned about tradition and appearance? .......Oh boy, I've gone and done it now. Sacred cows were probably meant to be left alone and now I've gone and shot one.

Believe me, I've already heard the question, "So what do you want to do, change the way we worship or do church?" YEP! It is time for a complete culture change when it comes to church. We need to ask ourselves how Jesus would do church, or more importantly, how Jesus would get outside of the four walls of the church and do church in the world. I was at a conference a while back. The guest speaker was even flown in, so you would think that it would have been worth taking note on what he said. His main point was that church can't be done the same way that it was done even ten years ago, yet the willingness to change very seldom happens because of the power of a very tiny word spelled f....e.....a.....r.

I'll tell you what though. Some HAVE started to change and I'm talking about both churches and individuals. Some ARE getting outside of the traditional box and the ones that have are beginning to make an impact in communities and families around them. The ones who are getting lost in the passion of (and again I use Ken Wilson's words) "Jesus brand spirituality," are learning how to repair a ruptured world. This movement, if you want to call it that, started out slow, but then it started to grow (where did I put those Dr. Seuss books?) and the pace is quickening. There is a growing desire to first bring healing to anyone who has been damaged or scarred by man, religion or the church (isn't that a painful thought?) and then to show them, one on one, of their value to God, His kingdom and society; teaching, equipping and then empowering them to become 21st century Peters and Pauls. Sometimes this is referred to as a shift, or a culture change. To me it is just rediscovering how God intended for things to be in the first place. When Jesus came "to seek and to save that which was lost"(Luke 19:10), there was a lot more behind that statement other than saving lost souls. Now before someone gets ticked off at me for saying that.....DON'T....until you have researched or studied what some of the key words were actually supposed to mean, such as the word "save", or even going back to verse 9 in Luke 10 and looking at the word "salvation." I know that receiving Christ is the first and most important step, but that doesn't mean it is the only step. It's time to stop accepting a traditional teaching just because it's easy to do.

Sorry about chasing that rabbit trail. I'll get off it now and return to the thoughts behind the re-discovering or shifting. One of the most exciting elements to this change was best expressed by a friend Sunday night. He talked about how EVERYONE has a piece to bring in what is taking place. Nobody should be left out. That includes you! You with destiny, importance and purpose in bringing ideas and dreams with you as we realize the potential of the Kingdom here on earth. The days of waiting on the sidelines and just hoping for a chance to play are nearing an end. For some, those days are already over.

Winning For the Kingdom
Mark S.

Brian Johnson - What Does It Sound Like

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

WOW! DAD GAVE YOU THE KEYS!

To me it feels like a long time since I have written. I hope this entry on the blog finds you well. I pray that each day you are seriously looking for God sightings and ponder how He is working, or wanting to work in your life. God loves you with an everlasting love. Don't you ever forget it, either. Sometimes we tend to forget how real God wants to be in our lives, or that He wants to accomplish great things through us. Sometimes as Christians we can feel like class A screw-ups and end up wondering how God would even want to use "someone like me." The answer to that is really quite simple. He loves us. Within each one of us He has created a masterpiece. Appearance doesn't matter to God. Weight, height, or physical attributes He cares nothing about. Within you He created a masterpiece. Remember, God looks at the heart and only man looks at the appearance. Just think about how even your heart works every second and every minute to keep pumping life into you even as you are reading this. What magnificence God's workmanship is!

Now, if you ever start thinking that God can't use you, that you've messed up too much, just take a look in the Bible and you will see some other class A screw ups. People who messed up only to find God using them in unbelievable ways to further His kingdom. Where do you want to start? Jonah? Peter? Samson? How about David, Solomon and Paul? In those three alone we see an adulterer, one who fell into pagan worship and a murderer. But in those three we also see a great story of redemption. A story of redemption that is no greater and no less than your own. I listed the first six names that came to my mind, but the Bible is full of people who really messed up, who later seemed to overcome insurmountable odds. With God, however, nothing is ever insurmountable and it would be in our best interests to remember that.

So what does God want to do through you that will make you a hero of faith to your children, grandchildren, great grandchildren and beyond? How many times have you thought, "If only I had the faith of those guys in the Bible?" I can almost hear Jesus talking about how the Kingdom of God is near. I've been thinking a lot about that, how the kingdom of God is near, or the kingdom of God is here. So often I see Jesus talking to sinners and telling them that the kingdom is near, or "at hand," but then I see those sinners, just like you and me, submitting to Jesus' ways, His love and suddenly the kingdom is so near that we step right into it. No longer should we operate according to the limitations of this world and what we can see, but to operate according to the invisible and supernatural and the ways of the kingdom.

Today, more than ever God desires for us to live, love, work and play in the ways of His kingdom. Let us "walk by faith and not by sight." In doing so we show the world a different way. We show the world a different way to love and how people need to see that. Stuff is messed up. It's up to us to make stuff right. Instead of wondering why God doesn't do something about the wrongs in life, we need to be thinking about what God wants US to do in order to straighten things out. Hey, we are the ones after-all with the keys to the kingdom. They were given to us. What was it that the Master said? "Whatever YOU bind on earth, I will bind in heaven, and what ever YOU loose on earth will be loosed in heaven." It's like being 16 again and Dad gives you the keys to the car. MMMMMMM. The sky contained no limits then and the possibilities seemed endless. Now with a different set of keys, I'm going out to make a difference. I'm looking to be a man that would be written about in the Bible. I'd like you to come with me.

I've been thinking a lot about that dream that I had a week ago. I sure hope you have read it. If not, please do. After you are done reading here, you can go right into it. It will be the first one listed under the September archives listing. I've been praying into that dream and asking God to reveal to me what everything symbolized. Some have written to me either here, on Face Book, or through email, sharing with me what they believed God is saying about different things. I love that. That dream wasn't just for me and I knew that I couldn't keep it to myself. That dream was for you, too and it's your choice to either scoff at it, or to ponder as to if God is wanting to give us a glimpse. The fast moving sky filled with stars, the bruised woman, the moon and planets, that split second burst of light and energy that did sort of resemble some kind of a ship, but yet somehow I know that the Lion of Judah was involved with that burst. I do believe that God allowed a peek into what is coming, what is beginning to happen and everything in that dream contains impacting significance. I do believe that we are embarking on an unthinkable outpouring of the Holy Spirit and grace as God is once again making an attempt to allow the lost people on this earth to see His revealed Son as the lamb who was slain for the sins of the world. I already know that there is an increase of what we call signs and wonders that are taking place. Much of which is at our fingertips. "Heal the sick, cleanse the lepers, raise the dead, cast out demons." We are to take care of the poor, the widowed and I believe that in today's times that includes one parent families; single moms and single dads. The keys to the kingdom.

Now listen, even though I believe that we are moving into the next phase of the last days, I DON'T want anyone to read into it that I'm saying that the return of Jesus is immediate. Some of my traditional views on Revelation have even changed. I have no idea how much longer it will be and the older I get I wonder even more how everything is going to play out. It's not in our place to try to figure everything out, either. I do know that we are to be ready. We are supposed to help others get ready. There are many who are lost who desperately are in need of the Savior. People need to learn the benefits of living in the kingdom now!!!!!!

Dad didn't give me the keys to the car and tell me to sit around, make them jingle, look at how shiny they were and imagine myself driving. Jesus didn't give us the keys so we could just sit around singing Kum-Ba-Ya, imagining, waiting and wondering how it's all going to come down, how and when He's going to make it all happen. Yes we do need to take time to read, pray and teach. We need to spend more time doing those things than what we sometimes do, but it's also time to get on the move. To create some friction. To be doers and not just hearers. It's time for passion and to let our hearts burn for the things of God. Holiness, righteousness, sanctification.

My friend, you are loved by God with an everlasting love. He has created you in a most magnificent way. He's given you the keys. I'm certain that He's looking for drivers and those who will be fueled by passion for Christ. What say you???

"BE VERY CAREFUL THEN HOW YOU LIVE, NOT AS UNWISE BUT AS WISE, MAKING THE MOST OF EVERY OPPORTUNITY BECAUSE THE DAYS ARE EVIL." (Ephesians 5:15-16)


Starting the car,
Mark S.