Today has been an amazing day. It has actually been a pretty power packed weekend. I find myself feeling exhausted from all of the activity. Let’s see if I can paint an accurate picture for you.
Friday evening @ 8:30 Family prayer for 1 hour
Saturday morning @ 6:30 Met a friend for breakfast.
Saturday morning @ 8:00 Met with the men from church. Taught the lesson for the week in our monthly meeting we call “Morally Pure and Spiritually Strong”.
Saturday noonish hung out with my son and did some yard work, laundry, and whatever else I couldn’t get to during the week.
Saturday afternoon hung out with a good friend that helped me get this whole blog thing figured out.
Saturday evening taught a Bible study in a neighboring state. Outstanding move of God in the lesson. It brought me to tears while expressing God’s love for them.
10:00 PM Started to drive home and wife forgot her purse. Got as far as state line and had to drive back!
10:30 PM Started to drive home again and decided to place a call to Mexico to check on someone. It transpired into a power packed phone with prayer and rebuking and all kinds of crazy stuff! As it turned out, the man we were checking on was being manipulated by spiritual possession. DEMON possession. One minute we were talking to him and offering to pray for him, and the next minute, his voice changed and he started hurling insults at us. This was not the person we had called. In fact it was like the person was in and out of consciousness. This was not to be mistaken as a schizophrenia episode. (I have a friend that has been diagnosed and is under treatment for such) No, this was a demonic attack. Upon hearing this behavior on the phone, those riding in our van began to pray. It seemed like it only made the demon more mad. The voice on the phone started threatening and cussing and just out right lying about everything we know to be true about God. I told the demon to SHUT UP! I commanded it in Jesus name to be silent. It stopped immediately and the person came to his senses again. He asked me what happened and why was I shouting at him. I tried to explain, but he was unbelieving and totally unaware of what had transpired. When I explained what had happened, he could not believe it. He insisted that he did not say any of the things that had just come out of his mouth! The transition that happened between this man and the spirit was so quick that it made it impossible to even practice such a performance. Not even the best actor in Hollywood could pull this off. This was truly a man who was possessed and not in complete control of his faculties. The man said he felt sick and wanted to throw up. He kept saying he was in pain. I told him we would be praying for him. I said I needed to hang up and that I would pray again that night. Now here is the eery part. The unclean spirit started to speak again and said in the most hideous voice I have ever heard, “You don’t have to worry about him!” I hung up with the intent of not worrying but praying.
11:30 We arrived home and settled in. Immediately we called our family and friends from the Bible study and asked them to join us in prayer. We all agreed that the enemy, the Devil, was not happy and was trying to intimidate us and was hoping to stop us from doing God’s work. Well, that didn’t work, because it only made us more intense and more focused to pray for our family. Prayer was tough. It was like a 15 round boxing match. Waves of worship followed by intense tongues. Bout after bout, our family was duking it out wth the spirit world. Proclaiming God’s power and authority over the situation. This continued for an hour or so. And then……peace.
12:45 We sat and talked for a little bit and reflected on the day. Before we knew it, it was time to hit the hay. And sleep didn’t come easy. Though I was exhausted by now, my soul was definitely stirred and I just wanted to keep talking with the Lord. My heart was heavy on behalf of the people that we were teaching. My spirit was racing inside of me with spiritual adrenalin after the confrontation! My thoughts were in every direction and making my eyes heavy. The next thing I knew, the curtains came down and I was asleep. As if I had only just laid down, I was waking up. It was already 3:30AM. A quick trip to the restroom and back to bed for just a couple more hours.
6:30 AM Time to get up for church. Race through the house, ironing, juice, preparing, waking up the rest of the sleepy heads.
8:30 AM We left for church refreshed and ready for an amazing service.
9:00 AM Worship practice. (I was the worship leader selected for today)
9:30 AM More prayer with the church in preparation for today’s service.
10:00 AM Service began and it was power packed! Or was it just me that was feeling the heat of God’s spirit?!
11:00 Preaching began. Blessing of Asher was preached and we were truly blessed by the promising message of hope! Thank you Pastor Carlson!
12:30 PM Headed home. Lunch, rest, and reflect.
2:30 PM Nap
4:30 PM Wow! Was I THAT tired?! I slept 2 hours uninterrupted.
5:30 PM Everyone is hungry. Nothing to eat in the house. It’s Walmart time! Mad dash to the car. Drive, arrive, purchase and leave.
6:45 PM Back home and everyone is eating and not talking. We are like a pack of wolves chewing the leg off of a deer!
7:30 More reflecting. Thinking. I need to write!
Each Saturday we drive to a city about 75 miles away to teach a Bible study to a group of Spanish speaking family and friends. To explain further, this Bible study has been a labor of love for me. I have been teaching it for about 6 years. It isn’t really a typical 10 week or 12 week lesson like some would teach. The format is open and casual. Although I started teaching from a chart back in the beginning, it just seemed that after the final lesson the students wanted more. Their insatiable appetite for God’s word would not be satisfied. I found myself studying more and praying for direction each week. As they grew, I grew. It was kind of neat really. Isn’t that the way it is supposed to be though? I mean, shouldn’t the teacher learn as the students do? Granted, there were a lot of times I taught things I already knew, but in order to keep it fresh, I also kept looking for deeper truths in God’s word. I wasn’t really looking for things to teach per se, but I was looking to know more about God and his ways and how they apply to our lives. Because to me, this is the most important thing when studying God. To know him, and to understand him.
Last night’s lesson was special. It was about faith that is bigger than our problems. I laid it out like this. You cannot know God, you cannot please God, and you cannot receive from God without faith. Faith is the number one ingredient in experiencing God. To know him, to communicate with him, and to feel him, you need faith. It was faith that caused Noah to build an ark that would save his family from a flood caused by rain. This was something that he had never experienced before. Rain that turned into a flood. I talked about faith in such a way that it was almost irritating. I kept hammering how important it was and all of the men and women in the Bible that demonstrated it in their lives. It was 98° outside, and everyone was starting to get fidgety and uncomfortable. And then God started to move in the lesson. An emotion of gratefulness came over me in such a way, that I wept as I taught. I started to express the depth of God’s love that is towards us. And even when we are at our worst, it was then that his sacrifice on the cross covered us. The nails in his hands? Those were supposed to be mine. The thorns on his head? That was my crown! The reason he fell when carrying the cross wasn’t because he was a 98 pound weekling. No. It was the weight of the sins of the whole world that was crushing him. My sins, and your sins. All of my complaining. All of my discomfort. All of my impatience while waiting on him. He took it all. Just for me and said “No charge”.
I guess that is the real reason I do what I do every weekend. There are a lot of entertaining things that we all love to do in our free time, and quite frankly not all entertainment is wrong. We should be able to relax and unwind and even take a vacation. But a lot of times I don’t have the means to do this. Although I would love to be at the lake, maybe fishing with my son, bowhunting for that great Whitetail deer in the woods, and even see a Brewer game once in a while, I find myself spending Saturday and Sunday in God’s service. Do I ever get away? Yes I do. But when it is time to be in the house of the Lord, I usually don’t barge through the door demanding to be fed by a preacher. Rather I ask, “Who can I feed Lord?” “Who can I help to understand your mercy and grace?” You see God has been so good to me that I cannot demand anything from him. He has given me so much throughout my life that I owe him everything. He spared me. He saved me. He went out of his way to show his love for me. And that is why I must do all that I can for him. I choose to be God’s hands and feet. I am forever indebted to him. And for that I will go above and beyond.
May the challenge of the Lord that calls each of us to do more rest upon you. May you realize it’s importance as you accept it and may God give you the courage and strength to accept his calling on your life.
“For many are called, but few are chosen.” (Matthew 22:14)
Blessings to you