Governments Don’t Approve

Redevelopment of Dachong Village, Nanshan, She...

Under China’s totalitarian government, people can now join a Christian Church as long as that Church registers with the government. Many Western Christians are fooled into thinking that the Chinese are now free to believe whatever they want but not quite. They’re free to believe what they want as long as the government approves.

Called the “Three-Self Patriotic Movement” all Churches must register and be approved for service times, locations and who is allowed to preach. Any Church that’s not registered gets harassed by government agents and some members are arrested and imprisoned while denied human rights. Despite the persecution, millions of Chinese are believing in Jesus and facing the hate.

Life Is But A Cruise

Reenacting torture during a demonstration in B... 

Most of us in this present day and age can’t stand to be uncomfortable for a few minutes.  We come unglued if our flight gets delayed or we get stuck in traffic for a few hours.  What would we do if we faced imprisonment, torture and death for our faith?  A better question to ask is, What will we do when we face imprisonment, torture and death for our faith in Jesus?  What will we do? 

Jesus told us to get on our cruise ships and follow him.  No, He said we must pick up our crosses and follow Him (Luke 14:27, Matthew 16:24, Mark 8:34).  “Cross” doesn’t refer to getting stuck in an elevator with a loud mouth and miss an important luncheon.  The cross means a tortuous death!  The Bible tells us that we must suffer (2 Titus 2:3) and we’re blessed when others persecute us (Matthew 5:11-12).  Does that make you feel good?

The next time we get hurt and upset because the boss moved our desk away from the window (that really happened) we could take a moment to think of modern day martyrs.  Bounchan lost his job as a Communist Party district leader in Laos.  Soon, he was imprisoned, tortured, starved, locked in stocks and placed in solitary confinement for more than 10 years!  His crime – telling others about Jesus. 

Learn more about Bounchan and other martyrs at The Voice Of The Martyrs website, Persecution.com

Christian Arabs

Today, I was watching TV and a man talked about how the Western Christians are not supporting Middle Eastern Christians.  I thought, “What Middle Eastern Christians?”  On the internet, I found an article written exactly 1 year ago today!  Is God saying something?

English: A modern Coptic monastery

A modern Coptic monastery (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

“We who preach diversity and make sure our Muslim brothers and sisters feel safe can miss this real persecution because we’ve spent so much of our lives focusing on civil – as opposed to religious – rights. And so we really don’t pay much attention to the cries of Christians in the Middle East.”

Read “Arab Islamic apartheid, discrimination, oppression, persecution against Christians Vs the only free State [in the region]: Israel” at Free Republic.

Jesus will bless the Arab people!

Instantly Healed

Does God instantly heal people today?

 

Watch as a woman with a poisoned and scabbed body is instantly healed by Jesus!

Warning!  Graphic images.  Not for the faint of heart.  Watch with discretion.

Jesus

How To Be Healed

English: The healing of the paralytic : wall p...

The healing of the paralytic : wall painting in the baptistry of the domus ecclesiae in Dura Europos. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Q: Since we can’t run up to Jesus and ask him to heal us like people did in the Bible how do we ask Him for healing today?

A: ASK Jesus. Matthew 7:7-8

Ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find; knock and the door will be opened for you. 8 For everyone who asks receives, and the one who seeks finds, and to the one who knocks, the door will be opened.

Ask – Verbally ask him in prayer, out loud or in writing.

Seek – Seek out the answer. Look around, go on a quest and do research.

Knock – The LORD is telling us to do something not just sit around.

I’ve been one sick puppy. Diagnosed with the mysterious fibromialgia, horribly severe acne and rosacea, depression, sleep disorder, anxiety, ADD and sensitive teeth. Fibromialgia pain is real! I remember waking up with throbbing pain in my sternum, back, shoulders and joints. It was inconsistent pain that moved around. Five minutes of pain in one area then it left and appeared in another area. Sometimes pain woke me up and other times I couldn’t sleep because of it. After a while, pain meds and antidepressants stopped working so I got desperate enough to believe that God would heal me. Then He did!

Q: How?

A: 1st I read every scripture in the Bible that I could find having to do with healing. There’s a lot. I read it out loud every day.

Proverbs 4:20-22 My child, pay attention to my words; listen attentivelyto my sayings. 21 Do not let them departfrom your sight, guardthem within your heart; 22 for they are life to those who find them and healing to one’s entire body.

2nd On my way to work while sitting in traffic, alone in my car I literally screamed, “Please heal me Jesus!”

Psalms 30:2 O Lord my God, I cried out to you and you healed me.

3rd When I caught myself thinking negative thoughts and saying negative words I changed them into positives. “I’ll always be sick. I can’t get better, I’m too far gone. Does God want me to be healthy?” Became; “I am healed. Got brought back the dead so he can heal me. Jesus never turned away anyone who asked to be healed so He wants me healthy.”

Proverbs 12:18 Speaking recklesslyis like the thrusts of a sword, but the wordsof the wise bringhealing.

4th I took my meds, improved my eating habits and got counseling for trauma that happened in the past. I learned from therapy that the mind-body connection is in the basal ganglia. Not that I really understand that but when we experience emotional pain it turns into physical pain until we deal with it.

Ezekiel 47:12 And on the banks, on both sides of the river, there will grow all kinds of trees for food. Their leaves will not whither, nor their fruit fail, but they will bear fresh fruit every month, because the water for them flows from the sanctuary. Their fruit will be for food, and their leaves for healing.

5th I give thanks to God for all His healing.

Luke 17:15 Then one of them, when he saw he was healed, turned back, praisingGod with a loud voice.

Healing takes time. We’ve been taught to think that God will only heal us instantly and if we’re not healed instantly then we’re not healed. Not true. Some of us are healed instantly and for the rest healing takes time. Both are miraculous.

Isaiah 53:5 He was wounded because of our rebellious deeds, crushed because of our sins; he endured punishment that made us well;because of his wounds we have been healed.

Then There’s Max

 

Max Lucado entertains a group of Ethiopian chi...

Max Lucado entertains a group of Ethiopian children (Photo credit: Michael S. Hyatt)

Several years ago, I saw and heard Max Lucado speak.  I had never heard of him before but I went with some people who read his books and heard him talk.  After hearing him I have no regrets and I’ll jump at the next opportunity.

Max Lucado wasn’t preachy or showy nor did he make himself the center of attention.  The building where I saw him was big but not a ginormous professional basketball stadium.  If there were cameras I never saw them, he did not take center stage but actually stood off to the left most of the time.  The experience was not a noise extravaganza with people cheering and screaming, not that there’s anything wrong with that, it was a simple and comfortable environment.  No razzle dazzle.

Lucado didn’t come across as one who was putting on an act but one who was genuine and genuinely talked about Jesus.  He’s a positive preacher but not a “prosperity preacher”.  I don’t remember the theme of his speech but he had me in tears and ice water runs through my veins.   What he said was substantial, I left there completely full not empty as is usually the case with preachers.

Since then, I’ve read a few of Lucado’s books and I’ll read anything he writes and watch any of his broadcasts, which are few.  Afterward, I always feel moved by his message and he doesn’t have to scream or use the word “money” constantly.

Check out his website MaxLucado.com, I highly recommend his message.

 

Joel Osteen Doesn’t Know

Joel Osteen, “I believe my way with all my heart.”  Watch him say it on “Lary King” and decide for yourself what it means.

English: Joel Osteen at Lakewood Church, Houst...

Joel Osteen at Lakewood Church, Houston, Texas (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

A while back, I visited Lakewood Church when I was in Houston and I found it to be nothing more than a big production. There was a stage, a camera operator on a big crane down front, lights, loud music with lots of people clapping and cheering the stars. You know who the stars of that show are, Mr and Mrs Preacher. That’s how everybody acted, like they were the stars of the show. Not Jesus.

It doesn’t appear as showy on TV as it does in real life but maybe all broadcasts are like that. Although, Joel Osteen’s message is all positive it’s missing something and feels shallow, at least to me. The majority of the crowd acted all happy, most were all smiles yet not really friendly. In fact, I found the people outside of the church to be more friendly and helpful than anyone inside. People inside the church didn’t even look at me much less say anything to me. Maybe it’s because I wasn’t dressed up in expensive clothes.

I’ve learned never trust people who smile constantly, they’re all hiding something. Mr and Mrs Preacher were all smiles in front of the camera and crowd but they acted like they couldn’t wait to run away from they’re adoring fans. As soon as the camera was off so were they and the choir immediately took their places and sang louder than before.

I’m not sure that I ever heard anyone speak the name of Jesus the whole time I was there. I left feeling empty and I never returned to Lakewood. Actually, it wasn’t unlike the average American church without cameras.