THE RAIN IS COMING: ARE YOU READY?

img_6309“Not every one that saith unto me, Lord, Lord, shall enter into the kingdom of heaven; but he that doeth the will of my Father which is in heaven. Many will say to me in that day, Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in thy name? and in thy name have cast out devils? and in thy name done many wonderful works? And then will I profess unto them, I never knew you: depart from me, ye that work iniquity. Therefore whosoever heareth these sayings of mine, and doeth them, I will liken him unto a wise man, which built his house upon a rock: And the rain descended, and the floods came, and the winds blew, and beat upon that house; and it fell not: for it was founded upon a rock. And every one that heareth these sayings of mine, and doeth them not, shall be likened unto a foolish man, which built his house upon the sand: And the rain descended, and the floods came, and the winds blew, and beat upon that house; and it fell: and great was the fall of it.” – Matthew‬ ‭7:21-27‬ ‭KJV‬

Storms in life come in many ways, but understanding it’s purpose can bring comfort to such an uncomfortable situation. First thing to remember is that JESUS CHRIST IS STILL LORD OF THE STORMS! They are not just attacks from the devil… they were actually allowed by GOD, sent by GOD, and they have purpose! See the storm is the test. When it comes, it will reveal what foundation that you have built your life upon; because unless that foundation is Jesus Christ, it will surly fall!

The first thing to note is that, the dividing line is whether we actually DO the will of the Father or not. This one thing determines what foundation we are building upon. Hearing God’s voice is one thing (and very necessary), but it’s the actual DOING IT that counts.

Another interesting thought is this: GOD made us all from the dust of the earth… so as I think on this, what is revealed to me, is that the “sand” in this passage actually represents man or self. Most people are so busy going about doing works all for themselves, even many doing “Good works” are doing them for the purpose of easing their conscience to feel better about themselves. In essence, those who are building their house upon sand are building their own kingdom, for themselves, upon themselves, making even the good things they do complete vanity! In judgement all this will burn up in smoke.

Hear what the Apostle Paul tells the church of Corinth who were boasting in men:

“I have planted, Apollos watered; but God gave the increase. So then neither is he that planteth any thing, neither he that watereth; but God that giveth the increase. Now he that planteth and he that watereth are one: and every man shall receive his own reward according to his own labour. For we are labourers together with God: ye are God’s husbandry, ye are God’s building. According to the grace of God which is given unto me, as a wise masterbuilder, I have laid the foundation, and another buildeth thereon. But let every man take heed how he buildeth thereupon. For other foundation can no man lay than that is laid, which is Jesus Christ. Now if any man build upon this foundation gold, silver, precious stones, wood, hay, stubble; Every man’s work shall be made manifest: for the day shall declare it, because it shall be revealed by fire; and the fire shall try every man’s work of what sort it is. If any man’s work abide which he hath built thereupon, he shall receive a reward. If any man’s work shall be burned, he shall suffer loss: but he himself shall be saved; yet so as by fire. Know ye not that ye are the temple of God, and that the Spirit of God dwelleth in you? If any man defile the temple of God, him shall God destroy; for the temple of God is holy, which temple ye are. Let no man deceive himself. If any man among you seemeth to be wise in this world, let him become a fool, that he may be wise. For the wisdom of this world is foolishness with God. For it is written, He taketh the wise in their own craftiness. And again, The Lord knoweth the thoughts of the wise, that they are vain. Therefore let no man glory in men. For all things are yours; Whether Paul, or Apollos, or Cephas, or the world, or life, or death, or things present, or things to come; all are yours; And ye are Christ’s; and Christ is God’s.” – 1 Corinthians‬ ‭3:6-23‬ ‭KJV‬‬

As Jesus speaks, so we do, this is what pleases the Father. But those who do NOT do the will of the Father will be destroyed by the storms. Therefore I can conclude that the storms come to clear the stage of all the ungodly kingdoms of man, and to rain down blessing to grow the Kingdom of GOD in the earth through faith in Christ Jesus!

“And it shall come to pass, if thou shalt hearken diligently unto the voice of the Lord thy God, to observe and to do all his commandments which I command thee this day, that the Lord thy God will set thee on high above all nations of the earth: And all these blessings shall come on thee, and overtake thee, if thou shalt hearken unto the voice of the Lord thy God. Blessed shalt thou be in the city, and blessed shalt thou be in the field. Blessed shall be the fruit of thy body, and the fruit of thy ground, and the fruit of thy cattle, the increase of thy kine, and the flocks of thy sheep. Blessed shall be thy basket and thy store. Blessed shalt thou be when thou comest in, and blessed shalt thou be when thou goest out. The Lord shall cause thine enemies that rise up against thee to be smitten before thy face: they shall come out against thee one way, and flee before thee seven ways. The Lord shall command the blessing upon thee in thy storehouses, and in all that thou settest thine hand unto; and he shall bless thee in the land which the Lord thy God giveth thee. The Lord shall establish thee an holy people unto himself, as he hath sworn unto thee, if thou shalt keep the commandments of the Lord thy God, and walk in his ways. And all people of the earth shall see that thou art called by the name of the Lord; and they shall be afraid of thee. And the Lord shall make thee plenteous in goods, in the fruit of thy body, and in the fruit of thy cattle, and in the fruit of thy ground, in the land which the Lord sware unto thy fathers to give thee. The Lord shall open unto thee his good treasure, the heaven to give the rain unto thy land in his season, and to bless all the work of thine hand: and thou shalt lend unto many nations, and thou shalt not borrow. And the Lord shall make thee the head, and not the tail; and thou shalt be above only, and thou shalt not be beneath; if that thou hearken unto the commandments of the Lord thy God, which I command thee this day, to observe and to do them: And thou shalt not go aside from any of the words which I command thee this day, to the right hand, or to the left, to go after other gods to serve them. But it shall come to pass, if thou wilt not hearken unto the voice of the Lord thy God, to observe to do all his commandments and his statutes which I command thee this day; that all these curses shall come upon thee, and overtake thee: Cursed shalt thou be in the city, and cursed shalt thou be in the field. Cursed shall be thy basket and thy store. Cursed shall be the fruit of thy body, and the fruit of thy land, the increase of thy kine, and the flocks of thy sheep. Cursed shalt thou be when thou comest in, and cursed shalt thou be when thou goest out. The Lord shall send upon thee cursing, vexation, and rebuke, in all that thou settest thine hand unto for to do, until thou be destroyed, and until thou perish quickly; because of the wickedness of thy doings, whereby thou hast forsaken me. The Lord shall make the pestilence cleave unto thee, until he have consumed thee from off the land, whither thou goest to possess it. The Lord shall smite thee with a consumption, and with a fever, and with an inflammation, and with an extreme burning, and with the sword, and with blasting, and with mildew; and they shall pursue thee until thou perish. And thy heaven that is over thy head shall be brass, and the earth that is under thee shall be iron. The Lord shall make the rain of thy land powder and dust: from heaven shall it come down upon thee, until thou be destroyed.” – Deuteronomy‬ ‭28:1-24‬ ‭KJV‬‬

Therefore let us choose obedience to the VOICE OF THE LORD GOD that the blessings may fall upon us.

Submitted by Heather Wright

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What A New Testament Church Should Look Like

“How is it then, brethren? when ye come together, every one of you hath a psalm, hath a doctrine, hath a tongue, hath a revelation, hath an interpretation. Let all things be done unto edifying.” – 1 Corinthians‬ ‭14:26‬ ‭

Paul spent much of the book of first Corinthians explaining how the Corinthians (who had gotten quite a bit out of order) should conduct a church service. Besides basic instruction in not standing against local cultural laws unnecessarily, and striving to live peaceably if at all possible, he spent several chapters giving instructs on the proper operations of the Holy Spirit and their importance to the conversion of the lost and the edifying of the body as a whole. 

Starting in chapter 12 Paul explains the importance of the body of Christ all working together. Each moving in different spiritual gifts, one confirming the moving of the Holy Spirit through the operation of the other as God uses them in different ways; yet functioning as a whole in a way that only God can, and so proving what is from God and what is not. You see, the church was never meant to be one preacher serving a spiritual meal to everyone else who just come and blindly eat it up. That’s a good way to get poisoned! The church was meant to be a body of people all seeking God separately and then coming together to share what they got corporately to see how God fits the dishes together into one perfectly balanced meal. Not unlike a family potluck as opposed to a restaurant mentality.  

Paul goes into great detail on what a true New Testament church service should look like. After explaining what not to do he sums up what should be happening in this, our opening passage when he says, “well bretheren, how should it be? Everyone should come with a song or poem that God has given them or placed on their heart or prepared to partake in the ones brought by others. The body should come with some scriptures that God has recently pointed them to. The body should come ready to share some revelation that God has given them lately by either the written (logos) word or by the gift of prophecy (Rhema spoken word of God) as was covered extensively in previous versus. The body should come together taking turns in prayer in both the spirit and in the understanding as some pray in tongues and others interpret or move in other operations of the Holy Spirit mentioned earlier in the previous 2 chapters. These things all work together through the body that in the mouths of two or three all things might be established. 

“…In the mouth of two or three witnesses shall every word be established.” – 2 Corinthians‬ ‭13:1‬ ‭

When God speaks, He will speak it through multiple people and sources in different ways all coming together to make one very clear message. In this can you discern what is being ministered by the Spirit of God and what is simply coming from a man, or worse yet, a deceiving spirit. Where only one man ministers there will almost inevitably be error, for there is nothing to check the message against to keep it accountable. After all even the devil preached scriptures to Jesus (out of context and out of time with the season that God had Him in) when seeking to tempt Christ into error. 

To everything there is a time, a time to be silent and a time to speak, a time to wait and a time to move, a time to plant and a time to reap what has been planted. All of these take faith but faith comes by hearing and hearing by the Rhema (right now spoken) word of God. When you have heard the Holy Spirit of God speak the same thing to you consistently and persistently through multiple sources it stirs faith in you to believe it. The logos written word of God gives you instructions for both seasons but only the Rhema spoken word of God can tell you what season you are in. Therefore are we not to forsake the assembling of ourselves together nor the operations of the gifts of the spirit through each member of the body, that in the moving and speaking of the Holy Spirit of God through individual members can what He has been speaking directly to us be confirmed and reaffirmed and then sought out in scripture for examples and instructions on how to walk it out. This is the perfect moving, function, and operation for the true biblical New Testament Church and the body of Believers that make it up. 

“How is it then, brethren? when ye come together, every one of you hath a psalm, hath a doctrine, hath a tongue, hath a revelation, hath an interpretation. Let all things be done unto edifying.” – 1 Corinthians‬ ‭14:26‬ ‭

“But the manifestation of the Spirit is given to every man to profit withal. For to one is given by the Spirit the word of wisdom; to another the word of knowledge by the same Spirit; To another faith by the same Spirit; to another the gifts of healing by the same Spirit; To another the working of miracles; to another prophecy; to another discerning of spirits; to another divers kinds of tongues; to another the interpretation of tongues: But all these worketh that one and the selfsame Spirit, dividing to every man severally as he will. For as the body is one, and hath many members, and all the members of that one body, being many, are one body: so also is Christ. For by one Spirit are we all baptized into one body, whether we be Jews or Gentiles, whether we be bond or free; and have been all made to drink into one Spirit. For the body is not one member, but many.” – 1 Corinthians‬ ‭12:7-14‬ ‭

“That we henceforth be no more children, tossed to and fro, and carried about with every wind of doctrine, by the sleight of men, and cunning craftiness, whereby they lie in wait to deceive; But speaking the truth in love, may grow up into him in all things, which is the head, even Christ: From whom the whole body fitly joined together and compacted by that which every joint supplieth, according to the effectual working in the measure of every part, maketh increase of the body unto the edifying of itself in love.” – Ephesians‬ ‭4:14-16‬ ‭

“(Of those) Having a form of godliness, but denying the power thereof: from such turn away.” – 2 Timothy‬ ‭3:5‬ ‭

An Instrument of Worship

imageHow many of us saved and born again believers want to be used for God? I would hope that to be the desire of us all, but the LORD revealed to me why only a few of us actually walk out His perfect plans for our lives.

God showed me a valuable lesson, He showed me an instrument… (for me it’s a guitar). He said, “How awkward would it be if when you went to pick up your guitar and tune it to play, that it would un tune itself; or if when you picked it up to play a song, it would decide to play something else. Would you be able to use it?

You see this is the reason why so few are actually being used by GOD. We think we know better about what we should do than GOD does, or we are simply not willing to be tuned to HIS PERFECTION, but what it all really is, is that we want to do it ourselves, our way. We have free will and the ability to do what we want to do, so in order to let GOD use us we have to surrender and remain surrendered, allowing the HOLY SPIRIT to have control of the strings of our hearts and play out that which pleases HIM. We must be always in a place of Worship surrendered unto HIM for all HE desires to do with us.

For many of us, we think of images of those like Billy Gram, but that’s not necessarily what GOD has in mind. It’s the simple place where when GOD speaks, we say yes and do just as HE says. When GOD says, “Don’t go anywhere today, stay still be with only ME.” Do we? When He speaks again and says, “I want you to go tell your brother, “that little secret sin in your heart, GOD sees and is asking you to lay it down.” Do we? Do we obey HIM when it’s difficult and unpleasant to our flesh? Do we? Do we fast and pray seeking to be turned to HIS PERFECTION? Do we? Will we weep over our sins and those of our brothers and sisters in Christ? Will we ask HIM what we should do to be of use to HIS KINGDOM, for HIS GLORY to be displayed in our lives and those we are around? And when HE answers, will we trust and obey? All of those things are necessary components of an instrument of worship unto the LORD. You see, what I’m about to share with you is the rest of the revelation GOD showed me… when you are doing what you want to do, and refuse what HE wants you to do… we actually are instrumental in doing harm to HIS KINGDOM, and become instruments used by satan for distraction and destruction.

You see it’s vital that we remain surrendered unto HIM, only then can He pick us up and use us! Not all of us are called to be Billy Grams, but all of us are called to WORSHIP HIM, and by doing so (this surrendered life) will be even more valuable to GOD!

“I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that ye present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God, which is your reasonable service. And be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God.” – Romans‬ ‭12:1-2‬

No one wants to suffer, yet it is this very state of a “living sacrifice” that pleases HIM, allowing GOD to transform us into the perfect image of HIS SON JESUS CHRIST of whom GOD says: THIS IS MY BELOVED SON IN WHOM I AM WELL PLEASED!

Submitted by Heather Wright