Author: Jan Grace

As an ordained minister for over 30 years, I have pastored two churches and have spent time on staff as a worship leader. I have been married to Phyllis, the wife of my youth, for over 45 years and we live near Des Moines, Iowa. We have a son and daughter-in-law, along with 2 grand cats. My wife and I attend Lifehouse Community Church in Urbandale, Iowa. I've published 10 books, all available at jangrace.org

Why I Believe Jesus Is The Healer

The Lord That HealsThere are many viewpoints regarding the subject of healing, specifically pertaining to these questions: “Does God heal?”, “Does He heal today?”, “Is healing a ‘new age’ subject?”, “Does God give people cancer?”, “Is there such a thing as ‘faith healing’?”. On and on the questions flow, accompanied by answers that sometime bring more confusion and doubt than anything else.

I understand my viewpoint is simply what it is; my opinion. While I like to think my study, background, experience, and faith give credibility to my opinion, I know that I can’t convince anyone of the truth. It will take Someone much greater than I to bring that about. Therefore, my intention for this post is not to convince anyone to embrace my opinion as the ultimate, complete truth on the matter. My aim is simply to explain why I believe Jesus is the same today as He was 2000 years ago; and because He’s the same, He is doing the same things He did then. Such as, healing the sick.

This post may end up in your mind as just another one of many opinions. But to me, this is life! (Scriptures are listed at end of post for those desiring more research.)
So here goes:

Why I believe Jesus is the Healer

(and Father God still heals today):

1. God created us – every part of us. He knows how to fix us
2. He created everything by His Word and faith
3. His Word is Life and Health
4. He sent His Word to heal
5. His Word runs swiftly
6. When sickness touched the Israeli camp, the Lord showed them a tree
7. God Himself is the Tree of Life
8. He referred to Himself as The Lord That Heals
9. God has declared that He forgives all iniquity and heals all diseases
10. Under the Old Covenant there was provision for healing. New Covenant is better!
11. Even after sin and rebellion, The Lord made healing provision
12. When the children of Israel left Egypt, there was not one feeble among them
13. God has answered the prayers of multitudes and has promised to answer ours
14. The Lord promised to restore health and heal wounds
15. Jesus, the Suffering Servant, Savior, bore our sins and carried our diseases
16. Jesus Christ, the same yesterday, today, and forever
17. Jesus: “The Spirit of the Lord is upon Me…”to preach, heal, proclaim and open
18. Multitudes sought to touch Him and He didn’t try to outrun them!
19. Whoever touched Him was made whole
20. He never denied healing to anyone who came to Him believing
21. Jesus receives all who come to Him…this includes coming to Him for healing
22. People came to Jesus desperately seeking His touch, and got it!
23. The early church was given the same mission as Jesus
24. Paul wrote that the gospel is the power of God unto salvation
25. When a crippled man heard Paul preach, he had faith to be healed and walked
26. Jesus came to destroy the works of the devil
27. Jesus went about doing good, and healing
28. Jesus believed that sickness is of the devil; the devil is the author of disease
29. Jesus told the leper that healing was His will
30. Jesus told the Gentile woman that healing was the children’s bread
31. John prayed for the church to prosper and be in health
32. The peace of God that passes understanding is wholeness for the complete man
33. Paul prayed that our whole spirit, soul, and body be preserved…
34. James:Sick?Then call for the elders to pray the prayer of faith and heal the sick
35. Even sinners (so as to include ALL mankind) can find healing and forgiveness
36. Jesus doesn’t send sickness and disease to teach His people
37. Jesus said, “If you’ve seen Me, you’ve seen the Father.”
38. His grace (His willingness to use His ability) is sufficient for our every need
39. Whatever things you ask for in prayer, they shall be granted you
40. The law of the Spirit of life in Jesus set us free from the law of sin and death
41. The Spirit that raised Jesus from the dead dwells in me, giving life to my body
42. God loves me and delights in my prayers
43. His promises are Yes! and Amen! in Christ
44. If two or three will agree on earth…
45. “Thy Kingdom come, Thy will be done; as in Heaven, so on earth
46. Not one word has ever failed
47. Forever His Word is settled in Heaven
48. Jesus is the Word of God
49. Nothing is impossible with God
50. With God, ALL THINGS are possible
51. The only time Jesus didn’t heal much was when the people wouldn’t believe
52. Without faith it’s impossible to please God…but with it…
53. His Name is above every name, including that of sickness and disease
54. Jesus means salvation
55. No good thing will He withhold from them who walk uprightly
56. Every good and perfect gift… Healing is a gift, a good gift
57. Jesus is God Almighty

Just some reasons why I believe Jesus is the Healer and healing is God’s will. But don’t take my word for it. God’s Word is life to those who find it and health to all their flesh. And…

faith still comes, grows and changes things.

Healing Scriptures: Genesis 1:26-28; Psalm 139; Hebrews1:1-3; 11:1-6; Psalm 107:20; 103:3; 147:15; Numbers 21; Exodus 15:22-26; Psalm 105:37; Proverbs 15:9,29; Matthew 7:7; Mark 11:22-24; Jeremiah 17:14; 30:17; Isaiah 53:4-6; 61:1-3; Luke 4:18; Hebrews 13:8; Matthew 4:23-25; Luke 5:15; 6:17; Mark 5; 16:15-20; Romans 1:16; 10:9,10,17; Acts 14:7-10; 1 John 3:8; Acts 10:38; Luke 13; Matthew 8:1-3; 15:26; 3 John 2; Philippians 4:6-8; James 5:15-16; John 14-16; John 6; 2 Corinthians 9:8; 12:7-10; Romans 8:1,2,11-14; Luke 11:5-13; 2 Corinthians 1:20; Matthew 18:19; 1 Kings 8:56; Psalm 119:89; John 1:1-4; Luke 1:37; 18:27; Mark 3:1-6; 6:1-6; Psalm 84:11,12; Philippians 2:9-11; Matthew 1:21; James 1:17; John 10:30

Take Off That Red Cape!

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Clark Kent, that mild-mannered reporter for the Daily Planet, was quite a man. He could do all the things Superman could do (because that’s who he really was), but didn’t do anything unless he was wearing his big “S” and long red cape.

Wonder what the deal was. I mean, when he learned of trouble, especially if Lois was involved, he’d find a closet or phone booth, take off his glasses, remove his suit, and voila! He’s Superman!

But why couldn’t he fly, hit people, lift buildings, and dazzle Lois while wearing his “reporter” clothes? He was the same guy, he just looked different. Was it that people wouldn’t receive his help if he didn’t look like a superhero? Would people say, “who does he think he is? Why, we know his parents and they aren’t anything special!”

I don’t really know, but maybe it had something to do with public perception and expectations. Everyone had their idea of how a superhero should look, dress, talk and act. Maybe the adoration and praise from his adoring fans helped give him the super powers he demonstrated. And maybe, just maybe, he longed for the worship of others; he needed the worship and praise of others to help him get through life.

Pastoring, preaching, ministering is usually non-eventful. Most preachers DO NOT ” ring the bell” with every message they preach! Most weeks, even the busy ones, can be mundane and repetitious. Make phone calls, hospital calls, study, pray, visit Sister Ima Complainer and Brother Noah Good, mow the lawn, clean the church…week in and week out. So tempting to look for something, anything, that will put some “wow” into the ministry and get a larger audience (I mean, adherents). Never mind that the work they’re doing IS making a difference; no, they want others to know how super they really are.

Have you noticed how the churches in America are so competitive? Who are they competing with? Their brothers and sisters in Christ. For what? More people. Sound like a great thing? Keep in mind most “church growth” is really saints moving from church to church. Why do most move? They’re looking for the guy in the red cape that can put on the best show in town!

I suppose that’s a natural thing, eh? But the Apostle Paul didn’t think it was a commendable trait to act “naturally” or “carnally” (1 Cor. 3). He told the Corinthians to quit putting one person above the other and, instead, look to Christ. He said believers should be “spiritual” people.

Regardless whether or not people expect to see me in a red cape, I must remember who I am with or without the cape. God didn’t call and anoint me to put on a show, win people’s approval, sell the most tickets, or even leap tall buildings in a single bound. Now, He may have me do it now and then; but you can be assured He won’t have me changing in a phone booth before I do! He won’t have me pasting on a special smile for the cameras, practicing my “anointed gyrations”, or anything else just to make the next “show” more exciting than the last.

I am who I am in Him. And He made you who you are in Him! He is our strength and power. He’s all we need! So take off the red cape and comb your hair! Get rid of the cute little curl; that one that makes you look like that certain super guy.

Maybe when the American church decides to quit idolizing the ministers, and the ministers stop seeking and feeding on the praise and worship of the people, God will really "put on a show" that will change lives for eternity!

May we see Him demonstrate His speed, power, and ability…amen.

Yes, Shepherds!

Shepherds

God summoned His angels one day to explain His next installment of the Plan of the Ages. “And you are going to appear to a group of shepherds, as they are watching over their flocks. You’ll find them just outside the town of Bethlehem”, He said.

“Shepherds?”, one of them incredulously asked. “We’ve watched those kind of guys for years! Haven’t noticed much use for holy things among ’em, for sure. Why, you ought to hear the way some of them talk!”

“I’ve been around when some were even smoking and drinking!”, another angel chimed in. “By the time I left, I had to get something to spray on my clothes to cover that awful smell.”

One by one, on and on, they voiced their concerns to the Almighty. “After all”, they argued, “we’ve even witnessed them cussing! You just can’t trust what may come out of their mouths! Shepherds? Really? Are You sure?”

“Yes, shepherds!”, the Master Planner responded. “Now, if you don’t mind, I’ll continue.”

As they quietly watched and listened, He continued with the Plan. “Shepherds, though maybe a little rough and worldly, are just the kind of people I can reach. They aren’t pretentious or preoccupied with their own importance.”

Remember David? He was quite a young man when he caught My eye and captured My heart as he worshipped. He was a shepherd, remember? But he was faithful, and humble.

These shepherds I’m sending you to will repeat exactly what you tell them. My story, My plan, will be safe with them. They have no hidden agenda. They will simply respond as reporters; they’ll report and the rest of the world will decide.”

As the angels got ready to meet with the shepherds that first Christmas morning, I’m sure there was a sense of awe among them as they reflected on the words of their Master. To think that the God of the universe would choose people like shepherds to reveal Himself, His plan, and His Provision to; remarkable.

By the way, nothing has changed in this regard. The “high and mighty” never do well with an announcement such as the shepherds received. For “the humble receive from Him, but the rich go away empty.” In other words, when people think they have it all together, they don’t feel the need for something better. Folks that are full of themselves don’t make very good witnesses and reporters. Even preachers…uh, sorry. Better stick with my story.

Shepherds…probably not a clean one in the lot. But God saw them as the perfect ones to proclaim what they saw and heard; “The Savior – yes, the Messiah, the Lord – has been born today in Bethlehem, the city of David! And you will recognize him by this sign: You will find a baby wrapped snugly in strips of cloth, lying in a manger.” Suddenly, the angel was joined by a vast host of others – the armies of heaven – praising God and saying, “Glory to God in highest heaven, and peace on earth to those with whom God is pleased.” When the angels had returned to heaven, the shepherds said to each other, “Let’s go to Bethlehem! Let’s see this thing that has happened, which the Lord has told us about.” They hurried to the village and found Mary and Joseph. And there was the baby, lying in the manger. After seeing him, the shepherds told everyone what had happened and what the angel had said to them about this child. All who heard the shepherds’ story were astonished, but Mary kept all these things in her heart and thought about them often. The shepherds went back to their flocks, glorifying and praising God for all they had heard and seen. It was just as the angel had told them.”(Luke 2:11 – 20 NLT)

Shepherds. Not saints, but, yes, good enough for God.

Love Is An Odd Thing

HeartLove is an odd thing!

It gives without conditions,
It isn’t fearful of what might happen.
It isn’t blind; in fact, love sees things as they really are.
It is like a mirror, accurately reflecting the condition of the one who stops long enough to gaze into it.

It doesn’t demand it’s own way, or complain if inconvenienced.
It won’t require of others anything it hasn’t already done.
It will not steal, rape, or injure. It simply can’t.
It is intimate, but not obscene.

It is secure, in that it doesn’t need to be accepted to know its value.
It never takes advantage of others; their mistakes, their weaknesses, their generosity, or their trust.
It trusts in. It weeps for. It laughs with. Others.
It fulfills every commandment, plus.

It’s like a saucer that sits under a shaky cup of hot coffee. Catching, protecting, gathering, supporting.

It says one thing and does it.
It’s always trying to find a way to reconcile, yet won’t force its way.
It is the motivation behind every great deed.
It doesn’t require a platform to speak from.

It turns a deaf ear to criticism, yet hears the heart’s cry of the lost and hurting.
It outlasts every threat, every rejection, every indifference.
It is imitated by many, but captured by few.
It is the strongest force in the universe, but gentle enough to caress a broken heart.

It is beyond reason, and our wildest dream.

It won’t be fenced in, can’t be bullied.
It’s too good to be true, yet it is the foundation of truth.
It can not be blocked, stopped, quenched, or killed.
It can be ignored and refused. But it lives on, keeps on.

Love is God, God is love.

It is an odd thing.

End Times? Forget It!

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Now that the Mayan crisis is over, we can all get on with life…BUT WAIT! “But the day of the Lord will come as unexpectedly as a thief. Then the heavens will pass away with a terrible noise, and the very elements themselves will disappear in fire, and the earth and everything on it will be found to deserve judgment.

Since everything around us is going to be destroyed like this, what holy and godly lives you should live, looking forward to the day of God and hurrying it along. On that day, he will set the heavens on fire, and the elements will melt away in the flames. But we are looking forward to the new heavens and new earth he has promised, a world filled with God’s righteousness”(2 Peter 3:10 – 3:13 NLT)

Arise, Shine!

Sunrise
Please don’t misunderstand me…
I am not a gloom and doom kind of guy; but I have been spending time meditating on the Word and praying for and about the present day Church. While I may write things that seem like I’m ragging on the church and ministers, I am totally in love with Jesus AND His Church! And though I believe the next year will be extremely challenging and ministries will be sifted and shaken,

I see the Glory rising through those who won’t, and can’t, be stopped!
Malachi 4:1,2 – The Lord of Heaven’s Armies says, “The day of judgment is coming, burning like a furnace. On that day the arrogant and the wicked will be burned up like straw. They will be consumed roots, branches, and all. “But for you who fear my name, the Sun of Righteousness will rise with healing in his wings. And you will go free, leaping with joy like calves let out to pasture. On the day when I act, you will tread upon the wicked as if they were dust under your feet,” says the Lord of Heaven’s Armies.

Isaiah 60:1 – Arise, shine, for your light has come; and the Glory of the Lord is risen upon you.

Men and women of God – let go of the things that cause you and others to stumble in darkness. Embrace the changes the Lord is bringing you through.

Hate what He hates, love what He loves; and He will anoint you with the oil of joy beyond what you’ve experience thus far.

Days of Brightness,
Days of Freedom,
Days of Refining and Defining the Church.

You know what? We’re going to need each other…

Could Jesus Be An American Preacher In 2013?

American Church

What if Jesus was a Preacher in the American Church in 2013?

What would that look like? Would He know how to grow a church? Would He have a “staff” and what would that look like?

Could the Apostle Jesus plant a church in today’s society, economy, and denominational organizations?

How would He go about doing it? Who would He ask, what forms would He need to fill out, what extra training would He need before He would be given permission. Would He need to have a core group before beginning the work and what if He wasn’t the right age to connect with what the demographic researchers determined was necessary? Would He wear the title of “Apostle” like a badge that demanded recognition and obedience? Would He demand the tithe from His “children in the faith”? Would He serve others or expect everyone to serve Him?

Suppose Jesus came to church this year as a Prophet of God?

Who would listen? Would He even be invited to speak “a Word from God”? Who would give Him permission to speak? If He revealed too much of our hearts and lives, would someone shut down the meeting? Would He advertise in Christian publications, using full page, full color ads, describing Himself in such a way so He could get more meetings and publicity? Could He hold citywide crusades? Would He go to small venues, or would there need to be enough people to “support the ministry”? Would He “sell His services and prayers” for a nominal offering to help support the ministry? Would He promise a hundred-fold return for every nickel given? Would He be a person of integrity – and actually pray over each letter received, like He said He would – or would His staff collect the money from the envelopes and toss the letters?

Maybe Jesus would arrive as an Evangelist!

Healing, casting out devils, preaching the word of deliverance to those who come to the meetings. But, who would come? In fact, who would even schedule Jesus to have a meeting? The American church doesn’t need evangelistic meetings anymore, do they? After all, the local pastor can give “his” congregation everything they need. So really, no need for an evangelist. Just forget it.

Do you really think Jesus could last as a Pastor/Shepherd in 2013?

For how long? Could He make it 7 years? Could He handle loud music or old hymns? Would it make any difference to His church if He was bivocational? Would He sit in His office before “service”, not speaking to anyone so He didn’t “lose His anointing” or would He greet and hug, receiving all who came to Him? What organization would He have His preaching papers with? Would He go to “ministers meetings” for fellowship or would He stay in His own little world, complaining of how busy He always is? Would the congregation have to wait for months to schedule an appointment with Him? Would He return calls to missionaries or another minister, or would the calls be ignored? Would He allow His tee time to be interrupted by a telephone call from another minister, who just needs some encouragement? Would He realize Who is supposed to lead the local church, or would He maintain His “called right”?

Possibly, Jesus would show up as a Teacher.

Would He arrive with certain demands regarding His accommodations and meals? Would He speak at the people or to them? Would He have well staged theatrics and cute sayings, or would His teaching go beyond the use of clever and persuasive words designed solely for crowd pleasing. Would the message taught change lives or only sell books and build publicity? Would He speak to a waitress in a restaurant with the same “sincerity” He uses to teach the masses? Could He work hand in hand with the other ministries in the church? Would He yield the platform to someone less “gifted” if Father God had a different plan that day? And, how many houses would He need to demonstrate just how prosperous God had made Him?

We’re going to find out!

Jesus is wanting to minister as an Apostle, Prophet, Evangelist, Pastor and Teacher – through you and I! I recall Jesus’ ministry throughout the Gospels, ministering as those gifts mentioned above, and I see the need for a lot of change. In me.

Maybe in you.

You and Jesus will determine that.

 

 

 

Mrs. Grace’s Famous Chocolate Chip Cookies

chocolate_chip_cookiesEver heard the phrase, “you can catch more flies with honey than with vinegar”? You have? Well, it is a famous saying though I don’t know from whom it originated. But actually, I’d rather not catch flies!

However, I am really interested in helping people connect with Jesus! Maybe you are, too. Ah, but what to use for “bait”?

Over the last 35 plus years I have tried many, many kinds of bait. I’ve used the “I’m holy, don’t touch me” approach. Guess what? I got my wish and nobody touched me. But they didn’t touch God either. Another kind of bait was “loading up my Gospel gun with the good news” and blasting the people to kingdom come. Yep, I blasted, they blew away, but not into the Kingdom of God.

Others have tried using petitions, though they’re hard to keep on the hook. Many have used placards and protests to let people know just how sinful they are, especially compared to the ones holding the signs. Once again, people scattered and all that was left to show for the effort were the “holy” and “indignant” folk. Nothing to show for the Kingdom; the only show was on earth.

If you’ve ever gone fishing, you will know that just telling the fish they’re hungry doesn’t work. Besides, the only fish that knows how to read is Charlie, the Tuna.

So, instead of approaching people from our high and lofty place, what if we tried something different? Now, don’t misunderstand me, please. I am as adamant about sharing Truth, God’s Word, as the next bible thumper. It’s the Word of God that causes new life to take place! What I’m trying to convey is something that could make a difference whether people take time to hear what we have to say. Really say.

If people will REALLY hear, we can REALLY say! And, if we REALLY care, they will REALLY hear!

So what if we did things like Jesus did? “What was that?”, I just heard you ask. He gave them chocolate chip cookies! WHAT???

Well, I suppose I could be exaggerating just a bit. But think about it…everywhere Jesus went, there would be tax collectors and other notorious sinners surrounding Him, wanting to hear what He had to say (Luke 15:1). A woman of Samaria, at Jacob’s well, heard something from Jesus that caused her to take a different course in life. What was it He had that connected with them? They could tell He valued them. How? By treating them like they mattered; He talked with them! With them, not at them!

He mixed sweetness and gentleness into the mix of truth. It didn’t compromise the truth, it made it palatable. To me, it’s like giving someone some excellent chocolate chip cookies. Speaking of excellent chocolate chip cookies, I have included the recipe for Mrs. Grace’s Famous Chocolate Chip Cookies at the end of this post. They have a way of opening and connecting hearts. You can make them for yourself, but the real power from above comes when you make them for someone else!

Romans 2:4 – “Don’t you see how wonderfully kind, tolerant, and patient God is with you? Does this mean nothing to you? Can’t you see that His kindness is intended to turn you from your sin?” (NLT)

Chocolate chip cookies. Sweet, soft, chewy, moist, chocolate chip cookies.

Of course, you may still want to use your placards, petitions, and protests; up to you. But are you wanting just to feel good and holy, or would you rather connect with someone in a way that could very well change their life?

Cookies work better than a thump across the head!

Mrs. Grace’s Famous Chocolate Chip Cookies

1 cup butter, melted, cooled slightly (but, not margarine)

1/2 cup sugar

3/4 cup brown sugar

1 egg

1 teaspoon vanilla

2 cups flour

1 teaspoon baking soda

1/2 teaspoon salt

2 cups chocolate chips (12 ounces)

Mix ingredients in order given. Drop by teaspoonfuls (Mrs. Grace usually uses the smallest Pampered Chef scoop) on an ungreased baking sheet. Bake at 375 degrees 9-11 minutes. Don’t let them get too brown, because they will continue cooking a little while you wait to take them from the pan. (Mrs. Grace waits a minute or two to remove them from the pan). Also, if you have them to use, Mrs. Grace believes it’s better to use heavy aluminum baking sheets.

Why Are You Holding Your Breath?

hold breath

Ever stop and ask yourself, “Why do people hold their breath?”

There are several reasons why.

Some do it for spite, or to try to get their way. Some hold their breath because they can’t stand the stench in the atmosphere around them. Others may not like the way a certain food tastes, so they plug their nose, throw in the food, chew and swallow, THEN release their nose. I guess that works.

Breath is something everyone needs. We were created with the need to breathe. Without breath we wouldn’t get very far at all. 

Since breath is so vital, maybe we should all just hold our breath, keep what is ours, and make sure we always have it in case of a crisis. After all, you never know when you may need that gasp of breath.

I’ve noticed some people treat their time, treasure, and talents like their breath. It’s theirs, to use as they see fit. Some people have so much (earned, inherited, whatever), yet they are continually grasping (or gasping) for more. I’ve also heard of people who will stop their giving because they don’t like a decision made in their church. Or they’ll withhold their time to “teach someone a lesson”.

Have you ever tried holding your breath, like our friendly cat, and without letting any air out, try to get more in? You can only do that for so long. Pretty soon you’ll lose what you have to gain what you need to take in.

Breath is vital, but hold it too long and you die.

Proverbs 11:24,25 says, “Give freely and become more wealthy; be stingy and lose everything. The generous will prosper; those who refresh others will themselves be refreshed.” (NLT)

Jesus said, “Give and it will be given to you…the way you measure out is the way it will be measured to you.” (Paraphrased)

Now if you give all your breath away, you will die. If you try to hold it forever, you will die. The only way to live is to let the cycle of giving work in your life. You exhale, then inhale. You give, then receive. You touch people, they touch you. You bless others, you become blessed.

People don’t exhale for a tax deduction. Nor do they exhale just at Christmas time.

Breathing is part of living.

So is giving.

Next Year (as I see it)

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2013, I believe, will be a tougher year in every area but one. Social, financial, political, physical, even spiritual struggles will increase. People’s thought life will be challenged beyond what they’ve experienced and it will take a great degree of discipline to keep focused on truth rather than fantasy.

I see a Divine Separation taking place in 2013. As believers contend for righteousness and holiness, there will be a greater divide in the Church. While fathers and sons, mothers and daughters, will be connecting spiritually in a way not seen in the past 3 generations, spiritual brothers and sisters will lock horns. This is part of the “sharpening process”. Though many will not survive the process, it must take place. “Everything that can be shaken will be shaken, so that which can’t be shaken may remain.” The Lord’s work will be completed by vessels that have been tested in all ways and have become sharp and unshakeable in Him.

I believe there is one area that will NOT be tougher in 2013, in the sense of hard work with little results. But this will require much from those who want to see the Glory of God change multitudes of lives. That area is loving the world without reservation or hidden agendas. To those who will set aside their titles, ministries, programs, biases, doctrines (yes, doctrines), time, money, and simply love their world with God’s love they will see more people come into the kingdom than the church has seen in many, many years. This will be extremely hard for large ministries and those comfortable and secure in their churches. The process will require radical change in their philosophy of ministry. They will feel like they have become stripped bare and exposed to their congregations, peers, and the world. But the Lord will remind them His love should be their covering. Remember, He left His comfort and security to come to earth and ultimately was left exposed to His world; and while His people didn’t respond as they should’ve, multitudes did! And as many as received Him, He gave them the authority to become sons of God, even to as many as believed on His Name.

Quite a year is ahead! I sense the Spirit of God saying, “For too long the love of God has been hidden by the selfish works and ideas of man. It is time to expose the love of God for what it is; something bloody and raw that will go to the ends of the earth and give the ultimate sacrifice for someone else. The love of God makes you vulnerable, but extremely powerful. So don’t fear when you awake and find yourself spiritually and emotionally naked. Proceed to your world in My Name! They won’t see your nakedness, rather they will see My love.”

One last thing. I not only see testing and preparation increasing in the Body of Christ, I see the world’s trials increasing. What do I mean? I have a picture of Pharaoh, in the book of Exodus. God’s workings weren’t just for Israel, but also to bring Pharaoh and Egypt to a place of decision! Remember, there were many Egyptians who decided to leave with the Israelites.

What a time to be in the Kingdom!

“Then he instructed me, ‘Do not seal up the prophetic words in this book, for the time is near. Let the one who is doing harm continue to do harm; let the one who is vile continue to be vile; let the one who is righteous continue to live righteously; let the one who is holy continue to be holy.'”

“‘Look, I am coming soon, bringing my reward with me to repay all people according to their deeds. I am the Alpha and the Omega, the First and the Last, the Beginning and the End.'”
(Revelation 22:10-13 NLT)

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