Monday, July 6, 2015

Discouragement & Abandonment ~Project Intercession~

          Firstly, I'd like to apologize to those who have read the blog recently and found it to be out of date. I thank you at the same time for taking time to stop by. I pray that this post finds each reader well, even as your soul prospers (3 John 1:2)? Life has been good and bad, up and down, joyful and sorrowful over the last year and half. The last post I published was on Easter Morning of 2014. Much has been answered yet at the same time new prayer concerns have arisen. I'll do my best to update the website with the latest prayer request and even the answers to prayer. I covet your prayers and feedback on the website. Now onto the discussion at hand.

         The last several months have been very trying on me in my spiritual walk. Through it all I've listened to countless messages and spoken to preachers, family and friends about the time and arrived at the same conclusion- God is faithful! But regardless of what I knew to be true, I have experienced overwhelming despair, sadness, loneliness and simply a distant feeling towards the Lord. A study of biblical characters reveals that I'm not alone. From the least to the greatest, Old and New Testament, men and women of God have trodden the path of isolation and believed the lie that they were alone. Even Jesus cried the following while knocking on death's door: "And at the ninth hour Jesus cried with a loud voice, saying, Eloi, Eloi, lama sabachthani? which is, being interpreted, My God, my God, why hast thou forsaken me?" Mark 15:34.

          Why does this happen? Why would God allow His People to get to a point in their walk where they feel like they're all alone and deserted? I don't have a definitive answer, but I can suggest the following examples. King David is probably the very first person that comes to mind when I ponder about abandonment and the seemingly loss of fellowship from the Father. From day one David made enemies. Beginning at the anointing of David by the Prophet Samuel as the future king of Israel, his brothers despised him. Things only got worse for David as his kingdom took shape. Countless times King Saul tried to kill David, he fled from country to country often times facing oppression in foreign lands, he lived in caves, was forced to eat the bread of the temple being destitute and attracted hundreds of men who were in similar fates as he. (And every one that was in distress, and every one that was in debt, and every one that was discontented, gathered themselves unto him; and he became a captain over them: and there were with him about four hundred men. 1 Samuel 22:2) There were plenty of times where David told the Lord he was through with life. The psalms record many of those thoughts and prayers. However, David always got to the point where he was able to recall things like this...
1 Samuel 30:6
And David was greatly distressed; for the people spake of stoning him, because the soul of all the people was grieved, every man for his sons and for his daughters: but David encouraged himself in the Lord his God.

Psalm 27:13-14
I had fainted , unless I had believed to see the goodness of the Lord in the land of the living. [14] Wait on the Lord : be of good courage, and he shall strengthen thine heart: wait, I say, on the Lord .

and he taught his son to say...
Lamentations 3:21-23
This I recall to my mind, therefore have I hope. [22] It is of the Lord's mercies that we are not consumed, because his compassions fail not. [23] They are new every morning: great is thy faithfulness.

It was through the times of hardship that David was brought back to one anchor- God was faithful.

          Immediately on the heels of David, my thoughts wander towards Elijah who literally asked to die several times and decided to stop eating. Had the Lord not feed Elijah and pushed him to continue on one step at a time, Elijah would have never passed on the mantle to Elisha, a widow and her son would not have survived a famine and untold ramifications for the seven thousand who did not bow the knee to Baal. Read the words of Elijah as he sat in caves to die...
1 Kings 19:11-19
And he said, Go forth, and stand upon the mount before the Lord . And, behold, the Lord passed by, and a great and strong wind rent the mountains, and brake in pieces the rocks before the Lord ; but the Lord was not in the wind: and after the wind an earthquake; but the Lord was not in the earthquake: 
[12] And after the earthquake a fire; but the Lord was not in the fire: and after the fire a still small voice. 
[13] And it was so , when Elijah heard it , that he wrapped his face in his mantle, and went out, and stood in the entering in of the cave. And, behold, there came a voice unto him, and said, What doest thou here, Elijah? 
[14] And he said, I have been very jealous for the Lord God of hosts: because the children of Israel have forsaken thy covenant, thrown down thine altars, and slain thy prophets with the sword; and I, even I only, am left; and they seek my life, to take it away. 
[15] And the Lord said unto him, Go, return on thy way to the wilderness of Damascus: and when thou comest, anoint Hazael to be king over Syria: [16] And Jehu the son of Nimshi shalt thou anoint to be king over Israel: and Elisha the son of Shaphat of Abel-meholah shalt thou anoint to be prophet in thy room. 
[17] And it shall come to pass, that him that escapeth the sword of Hazael shall Jehu slay: and him that escapeth from the sword of Jehu shall Elisha slay. 
[18] Yet I have left me seven thousand in Israel, all the knees which have not bowed unto Baal, and every mouth which hath not kissed him. 
[19] So he departed thence, and found Elisha the son of Shaphat, who was plowing with twelve yoke of oxen before him, and he with the twelfth: and Elijah passed by him, and cast his mantle upon him.

Clearly, Elijah was at his wits end and wanted to quit but God strengthened him and let him see that he was not the last one standing. Another prime example is that of Jeremiah. Jeremiah had quit, given up on God and His People. Jeremiah, from the bottom of a pit blamed God for his condition and promised never to speak His name again. 
BUT...
Jeremiah 20:9
Then I said, I will not make mention of him, nor speak any more in his name. But his word was in mine heart as a burning fire shut up in my bones, and I was weary with forbearing, and I could not stay .

Jeremiah found it harder to not speak the words of the Lord than to speak them faithfully thus relying on God's strength. The accounts go on and on all the way up until the time of Paul. Even John the Apostle wrote about future Christians who would suffer for the name of Christ to the point of believing they will be forgotten. The conclusion is God does not forget about us nor allow us to go through a trial of which there's no escape. Jude said He is able to keep us from falling. Paul recorded God's heart when he said there's always a way to escape every temptation.

         Finally, I encourage to dig deep, pray for broader shoulders and seek the Lord's face earnestly until He speaks. May the assurance of which Job recalled during the midst of desolation be our song and constant stay...
Job 19:23-26
Oh that my words were now written! oh that they were printed in a book! [24] That they were graven with an iron pen and lead in the rock for ever! [25] For I know that my redeemer liveth, and that he shall stand at the latter day upon the earth: [26] And though after my skin worms destroy this body , yet in my flesh shall I see God:


May God bless and keep you..."Looking unto Jesus the author and finisher of our faith; who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is set down at the right hand of the throne of God."

Hebrews 12:2


Sunday, April 20, 2014

Happy Resurrection Day! ~Project Intercession~




      

     Happy Easter, everyone! I know that holidays that are predominantly Christian in nature always stir up a typhoon of emotions, but one thing that is certain; Jesus came in the form of flesh (celebrated in Christmas), lived and died and, amen, was raised from the grave (commonly known as Easter Day). I do prefer to call it Resurrection Morning since it is more biblical, but the point is that, the world see it as a Christian Holiday! That's pretty telling! Maybe Christians should use the occasion and lift up the name of Christ instead of being so biblically sound that they forget to actually reveal Christ! Regardless, PRAISE GOD, He is Risen and we have a LIVING God!!!!

     I actually wanted to take this opportunity to quickly encourage the reader to not quite and hopefully strengthen your faith! The Apostle Paul encouraged the Church at Corinth by the following words: " There hath no temptation taken you but such as is common to man: but God is faithful, who will not suffer you to be tempted above that ye are able; but will with the temptation also make a  way to escape, that ye may be able to bear it." 1 Corinthians 10:13. Why is this important? Well, I find that things I experience in life are not unique to me. In other words, the chances are very great that someone else living no or who has lived has gone through the trial/temptation/blessing or otherwise, such as I have. In fact, the Bible says this emphatically true! With that said, I found myself lately feeling alienated from God and all things spiritually concerned. I will admit that I have not been dwelling in my Bible enough, nor in prayer nor in intercession, nor giving of thanks, nor giving of my increase (or decrease) and in general have been inhibiting Christ in me... While in church today, the message was about, "Famous last words of the Executed" and Pastor Cuddy went through some examples of convicts who had spoken some interesting things in the final moments of their lives. Some men were just not afraid of facing death. Although I'm not afraid of death, because of Christ completed work for me (and the World), it was noteworthy nonetheless. The Pastor ended with the famous final words of my Savior while on the Cross. Taken from the Apostle John account of the Crucifixion, Christ said; "When Jesus therefore had received the vinegar, he said, It is finished: and he bowed his head, and gave up the ghost." John 19:30. WOW! What a powerful statement! But as the Pastor expounded on this deep thought and the ramification thereof, I found myself somewhat removed from the gravity of this finished work. I realized something in my life. The writer of Hebrews says in the 3rd chapter that sin's deceitfulness hardens the heart towards God. I realized that I have allowed the flesh to reign in my life deadening me to the awesome work of Christ and his Resurrection! What a shame!  At that moment, I had some reckoning to do with my Savior!

     I'm not trying to discourage anyone, but maybe you too have allowed your sin, this flesh to have too much (any is too much, but start somewhere) precedence. Why not today, have a little talk with Jesus and live the Resurrected life with Christ?

Monday, December 16, 2013

I'm Forgiven! ~Project Intercession~

          

          What defines a true friend? Is it someone who always defends a person? Could it be a person who always offers friendly criticism? Or perhaps someone who extends salutations, or gifts, maybe services, or sticks by through hard times? All of these attributes might possibly be encapsulated in a friend, but what really defines a true "friend"? 

          Proverbs 18:24 alludes to a possible definition: "A man that hath friends must shew himself friendly: and there is a friend that sticketh closer than a brother." Something that I've found in my walk with Christ is that friendships cannot be understood unless it is viewed from a single perspective. This view is not one that can be described or found in human relationships. It is found in ONE place, in one Person, JESUS Christ! Jesus Christ defines what a true friend is... One of the strongest attributes of God's loving friendship towards me, towards you, towards the World, is His forgiveness. I have found that when I'm living unto the flesh, fulfilling the desires of the flesh (Ephesians 2:3), I "lose" the love of God, the Forgiveness of God. Interestingly, that same chapter of Ephesians (chapter two), goes on to describe the forgiveness of God. I exhort you, brethren, live the dangerously, loving, forgiving life of Christ! Even if the cost, is life itself. The Lamb is worthy.

May God bless you, Intercessors!

Tuesday, June 18, 2013

An Uncompromising Standard! ~Project Intercession~

Greetings Everyone,




          I know it has been quite awhile since my last post, yet I have not forgotten about the burden here. Many things have happened; some good and some bad; some prayers answered and some still being petitioned before the throne. I have chosen the title, An Uncompromising Standard because of the things that have transpired in my life recently. According to the wisest man who graced this Earth (1 Kings 3:7-14), there is nothing new under the sun and the temptations presented before you are the same as before me (and vice versa). It is through these lens I wish to speak a word today through this letter.

          Over the past 7 months the Lord has wrought many miracles in my life! My wife and I have been blessed with a little boy-child (Avi James), a daughter who has seen another year of life (3 years old), another year with my beautiful wife (Anita), stamina to continue schooling (only 8 more months until graduation) and the desire of my heart as far as work goes- Police Officer! Throughout this time, the Lord has seized the opportunity to not only provide when we doubted Him, but to train and test me for His Glory! It seems that usually I fall very short of the goal (Jude 24-25), but He's been there to catch me and forgive me (1 John 1:9).

          In relation to standing my ground, I have found yet another weakness as I transition into full time police work. The temptation of conformity. Like never before, the urge to comply and blend in to the sub-culture constraints of law enforcement (LE) have never been greater. I recognize this is not just exclusive to LE but is universal to any line of work. However, when camaraderie, trust and life is held by your partner, a deeper sense of gratitude but also conformity exist as opposed to other fields of work. This same principle is applicable to Christians; how easy is it for a Christian to compromise in a certain situation what they know to be right and Biblical but for the sake of pride, embarrassment, friendship or even family, they are willing to let-go of their beliefs for the moment. We simply cannot allow this to happen! I cannot allow myself to compromise due to the moment.

          As I conclude this post, I urge each of you to pray, intercede on the behalf of your Christian brothers and sisters to remain strong, strengthen those who are weak and fight for those who have been destroyed. Too long the Church has stayed dormant to the attacks of the Devil and his fiery darts. Unwilling to be exposed and vulnerable, Christians rather would watch their brothers and sisters die, be tortured or lured by lust rather than risk alienation. I call you to a higher standard, a higher calling, the cause of Christ! Is there yet anyone who will STAND in the gap and face uncertainty despite the shame? Jesus did!

Hebrews 12:1-5

12 Wherefore seeing we also are compassed about with so great a cloud of witnesses, let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which doth so easily beset us, and let us run with patience the race that is set before us,

2 Looking unto Jesus the author and finisher of our faith; who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is set down at the right hand of the throne of God.

3 For consider him that endured such contradiction of sinners against himself, lest ye be wearied and faint in your minds.

4 Ye have not yet resisted unto blood, striving against sin.

Saturday, March 23, 2013

iRobot ~Project Intercession~

Greetings,
          I hope this finds each of you well? It has been over a month since my last post and I knew I should have posted something, but simply lacked the needed time due to school and other needs. During this break, I have been presented with numerous prayer requests, some of which have been answered while others are still in need. In addition, I have been thinking about a more user friendly, readily accessible page for Prayer Request and Answers to prayer contrasting what is currently in place (3/23/2013). Over the next few weeks, I'll be revisiting the Prayer Request/Answer to Prayer pages and indexing them for easier navigation.

          iRobot.... That's a intriguing title is it not? Although I do like the movie about iRobot, featuring Will Smith, this post is entirely unrelated. To be more specific, I have been thinking about this life, its meaning, value and use; more particularly, the spiritual life. Although both oftentimes reflect the other, I find something very interesting of which I desire to impart to you.

          I recently finished one part of my spring semester for school; one of the courses was General Psychology. Much of the class projected an evolutionary stance supplemented with an "all-knowing" attitude of psychology experts. I found a couple of verses aptly describing humankind's knowledge of Psychology.

Surely men of low degree are vanity, and men of high degree are a lie: to be laid in the balance, they are altogether lighter than vanity.
Psalms 62:9

Because that, when they knew God, they glorified him not as God, neither were thankful; but became vain in their imaginations, and their foolish heart was darkened. Professing themselves to be wise, they became fools, And changed the glory of the uncorruptible God into an image made like to corruptible man, and to birds, and fourfooted beasts, and creeping things.
Romans 1:21-23

If those few verses don't sum up all of man's knowledge, I'm not sure what else does? I'm not suggesting that education is foolishness or unprofitable, but ought never to be used to bolster one's pride so that they believe attainment has been achieved. Go to school, learn, but remember the words of Micah the Prophet:

He hath shewed thee, O man, what is good; and what doth the LORD require of thee, but to do justly, and to love mercy, and to walk humbly with thy God?
Micah 6:8.

However, despite the general attitude that many "experts" have about the human brain, behavior and psychosis of humanity, there were a few things I thought were very appropriate. One of the statements in my textbook said that most people live 90% of their life in a state of "auto-pilot" (Myers, 2013). Isn't that a crazy thought? People are so unobservant to their daily thoughts and actions, that the unconscious portion of the human brain regulates and reacts to everyday stimuli automatically (Myers, 2013). Amazing! On the flip side, how does this correlate to the spiritual side of each person? This is what I'd like to entertain today.

        There are some days when everything seems perfect and nothing could possibly be added or taken away from it. But then there are days that seems to be opposite, full of contemplation. This doesn't mean that the "perfect days" lack contemplation, but human-nature tends to be more reflective and objectivee when things are going badly. Over the last few weeks, I have experienced a strange sensation of despair and discouragement of which I knew was entirely unwarranted or from God. Despite this oddity, I have pondered about my psychology class and the autopilot of my Christian walk before this world. It appears to me that there are many Christians who are satisfied to live everyday and do the minimum or nothing at all; they are simply content that another day is passed. This is where I find myself.

        I do not want to stand before Jesus someday and learn that I was basically oblivious to the "road signs" God set before me, but I was too distracted by the cares of this life or running on "auto-pilot". I do not say this to instill fear, but admonishment to be conscious about our walk. It often pays to stay still and examine our walk in Christ (1 Corinthians 11:28). I feel led to stop here, but challenge you to think upon these things you have read. May God Bless you.

References
Myers, D. G. (2013). Psychology (10th ed.). New York: Worth.


Tuesday, January 15, 2013

Social Networks & Media ~Project Intercession~

Hello Everyone,

     In a day of social networks, blogging, status updates and on the go video chat, I've decided to create a thread purposed for media and my social network affiliations. Although a simple Google search of my name will reveal much social content, I rarely visit these sites, but I do use them to further the work here. However, with that said, I encourage anyone to check out my social sites and more importantly the media (short videos) I'll be broadcasting via Ustream. Pastor Paul Erdos and I have had great success using this tool for diverse needs of the ministry, so in like manner I plan on broadcasting live videos of music, witnessing and anything else the Lord lays on my heart.

     As much as the church (in terms of the building, a noun) is needful, I also believe the Lord has called us to be the church (in relation of actions, a verb) just as much! In this mindset, I wish to do simple things like, singing a song in public, leaving a piece of Gospel literature somewhere, speaking a word of encouragement to a brother or sister or helping a homeless person. Although I do not plan on capturing all of this on video and broadcasting it live to the world, I would like to see some things online. The Lord's will be done with this idea and not mine...

However, if and when it happens, it will be view-able here for free, of course! I hope you enjoy and once again invite you to participate as the Lord leads.

Revised  (April 14, 2016)
          Well due to some events that jeopardized safety and security, I was forced to remove most of the social media accounts of which I am associated. I plan on creating some Project Intercession accounts alone but frankly need more assistance maintaining such accounts. As the door opens new accounts will be added.


Google +

Sunday, January 13, 2013

Great Music ~Project Intercession~

Hello Everyone!

      So to compliment the thread dedicated solely to Great Books, here is a thread entirely consigned to great music. The Lord has used these songs at different times in my life for encouragement, strength; I trust they will be the same to you. Once again if need be, I can be reached by visiting this thread here or by viewing the FAQ here.

Great Music

Getting Used To The Dark


He's Still In The Fire


Four Days Late


Not Worth A Dime


His Life For Mine


Once Upon A Tree
 

He Gave His Life


Heaven's Irony


Hallelujah Chorus


Arise My Love


Through It All


Glory & Honor


Grave Robber


In Christ Alone


National Anthem


Forgiven Again


Before The Throne


Preach The Word


Rose Among The Thorns


Truth Is Marching On


Stay Strong


He Was There All The Time

Secret Place

Mercy at Midnight

It's About the Cross

I Found It All

I Want My Stage To Be An Altar

If You Knew Him

I've Been Here Before

Mercy Walked In

Overcomer

Through the Fire

Remind Me Of The Cross

Alpha & Omega

I'd Rather Have Jesus

Take It To The Cross

Love Is A Cross You Bear

I Can Only Imagine

Homesick

He Knows

First

Trust In You

I Am Not Alone

Finish What He Started

Shoulders

How Great

Great I AM

You Are God Alone

Who Am I


More to come... in time!