Friday, November 30, 2012

Declaration of Truth


This is an abbreviated version of a handout for a women's meeting that I'm ministering at tomorrow morning. I pray it speaks to you:


by Vern Herscherger
Proverbs 18: 21 says, "Death and Life are in the power of the tongue". Words that we speak can bring blessing or cursing - life unto our circumstances and our souls, or death to them. 

At the Spirit-filled Episcopal church I attended when I was very young in The Lord, the Pastors had us speak out loud - as a community - a Declaration of Truth during each church service. The more I declared God's Word over my life, the more I believed it. The more my faith grew, the more my inner being was healed and delivered. I - an angry, abusive wife and mother - was transformed from the inside out. 

The church was known in the community as the "Healing Church". Truly it was, because faith abounded, and expectations of Jesus meeting our needs ran very high as we declared God's Word over ourselves. Life was in the power of my tongue!

And miracles I did receive.
When Andrew was seven months old, he stopped growing. His height, weight, and head circumference did not change for seven months. Doctors spoke words of death over his little life and put my child through a battery of horrific tests. Only when I stopped all testing and stood only on God's Word, did Andrew begin to grow and thrive again. 
And then at 17 months old, Andrew abruptly dropped dead in my dining room. When the ambulance did not arrive, he was brought back to life at The Name of Jesus Christ. His testimony of Heaven can take your breath away.  
My husband, Joe, backslid and left us.  He was filing for divorce. Through a poem my nine-year old daughter, Alece, wrote, Joe came home. It was a poem declaring God's Truths.  A poem entitled Miracles.
After many, many months of praying and declaring God's Word over Joe's life, he dramatically repented and our marriage was made whole, catapulting us into ministry.  
My doctor diagnosed me with appendicitis and urged me to go to the hospital. I broke the iniquities passed down from my family line in regard to ruptured appendixes and stood on God's Word alone, refusing surgery. It took three days, but on the third day, I was totally, dramatically healed - all to my Christian doctor's amazement. 
These are some of the miracles took place during our tenure at St. Thomas' Episcopal Church. I share these with you for one purpose only - to give God glory for His awesome and mighty deeds that He does in answer to faithFaith was engraved into my heart through those declarations. Faith became my way of life. So when dire and desperate circumstances arose, I dared to believe God's Word above those circumstances. 

Above my feelings and bove doctor's negative reports. 

And God honored my faith.

So, I share with you a declaration of some Truths from God's Word that you can speak out loud over yourself.  If you will read this out loud over yourself everyday and before you open your Bible to read it, your life will effectually change.
I am a child of God Almighty. Since He is no respecter of persons, His Promises are to me, personally.  And They are sure and true – forever established.   
At the Name of Jesus Christ, everything contrary to the Word of God must bow its knee. Therefore, I am what God says I am, I have what God says I have, and I can do what God says I can do.   
I believe that God's Word is infallible.  As I hear and read God's Word, faith is built in my heart because my heart is good ground. I believe God's Word over my circumstances and feelings.  Because God's Word is a powerful, double-edged sword dividing spirit and soul and judging the thoughts and intents of my heart, I humbly submit myself to God’s Word and ask Him to use It on me to bring change within.
God’s Word has the power to transform me into a new creation.  As I read God’s Word, my mind is renewed.  I am becoming new and improved, healed and delivered, whole and healthy.
My Father is in the restoration business. He restores the years the “locust” has eaten from my life. His desire for me is to live life abundantly; therefore, Satan must give back everything that he has stolen from my life.  
Today is more important than ten yesterdays because today I have the ability to do and be all I missed out on yesterday. Today, God’s mercies abound to me and all is forgiven. A new day has dawned and I am new and improved, healed and delivered, whole and healthy.
And I am free!   
Thank You, my Father!
~~~
Make changes to it as it suits your needs. Find Scriptures pertaining to what you are believing for and write them out as a declaration - as a statement of fact.

I would love to hear your testimonies after you have started doing this. Truly, it will be life transforming! Please email me and share with me. If you have any questions, please feel free to email me.

Because of Him and Unto Him,


Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Are You Dying of Thirst?

Nothing in Scripture is just as it seems. There are hidden treasures lying deep within the Words, and The Holy Spirit just loves to reveal those deeper Truths to us. The depth and breath of the Word of God is immeasurable. With that in mind, let us look at this Scripture in John 19:28:
After this, Jesus, knowing that all things were now accomplished, that the Scripture might be fulfilled, said, “I thirst!
As Jesus Christ hung on the Cross, He cried out, "I thirst".  This is the recording of Jesus' second-to-last Words uttered before His death. Soon thereafter, He gave up the Ghost, crying out, "It is finished". 

I've been meditating on Jesus' Words, "I thirst". Was Jesus dehydrated? Absolutely! Was His Body in torment for lack of water? Absolutely! But, there is a much deeper spiritual Truth here.

Jesus told us in His Beatitudes that blessed is the one who hungers and thirsts for righteousness for they will be filled. (Matthew 5:6)

...thirsts for righteousness...

The Biblical Word righteousness means to be in right standing with God.

Jesus had already taken the sins of mankind upon Himself while hanging upon the Cross. He was full of sin - your sin and mine.  And because of that, He was no longer in right standing with His Father. God Almighty had to turn His Face away from His Son because God cannot look upon sin.

Jesus cries out that He thirsts after He had already cried out, "My God, My God why have You forsaken Me?

Alone.

Abandoned for the first time in Eternity.

In torment because He was no longer in right standing with His God.

And knowing the consequences of that.

Jesus cries out that He is thirsty just before His last Words of, "It is finished".

I believe Jesus was saying to His Father in that moment, I thirst to once again be in right standing with You. Physically, He was dying of thirst. Spiritually, He was also - desperately thirsting to be restored to right standing with His Father as He hung there - separated.  


If our very last words were to be recorded for eternity, would they be words of crying out to God to make sure we were in right standing with Him before we took our last breaths?  

Are we hungering and thristing after righteousness now as we go about our daily lives?

Selah.

Because of Him and Unto Him,

Friday, November 23, 2012

Happy, HAPPY Thanksgiving!

Our only daughter, Alece, sent us this photo card in a text for Thanksgiving. She lives in Nashville.  If you only knew what Alece has gone through in the last 4 years. If you only knew...

Her whole life was robbed from her. Alece lost her husband, her beloved African Gray parrot, her home, her friends, her ministry, her job, her beloved Africa all in one shot due to the continual unfaithful acts of her husband.

For three years she seemed to barely cling to life. She was alone and her soul was destitute, her life was as well. She moved all over this country living with various friends. No belongings, no life. And barely holding onto the hem of Jesus' Garment by her fingertips.

To see Alece in this photo...

Alive. 

Joy-filled. 

Free. 

Healed.

Whole.

Rejoicing once again in life...


Truly does a mother's heart good. This mother's heart.

Great is our God to restore the years the locust have eaten.  Great is our God Who honors faith. Great is our God Who never leaves nor forsakes, even when a husband does. Great is our God Who lifts us off the bed of languishing and gives us reason to hope.  

To my readers who know Alece, I know there is a lump in your throat at seeing her photo. Rejoice with me. Hallelujah! God is Good!

Forever, I am thankful. It truly was a Happy Thanksgiving!

Because of Him and Unto Him,

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

A Thankful Heart

I give thanks with a grateful heart
I give thanks to You, Holy One
I give thanks
Because You've given Jesus Christ, Your Son

And now
I'm no longer weak, I am strong
I'm no longer poor, I am rich
Because of what my LORD has done 
For me

I give You thanks
~~~~

A blessed Thanksgiving to you and your families. And to our sisters in the Philippines, as we celebrate our national holiday of thankfulness, we give thanks that God brought you into our lives! Hugs to you all.


Because of Him and Unto Him,

Monday, November 19, 2012

How Do You Spell Relief?

Hurricane Relief.

I don't like that phrase.


Cars, homes, properties - neighborhoods - all gone.
Relief?  There is not much relief for the ocean-torn homes, businesses, and displaced families. But, we do any little bit that we can to try and put a tiny dent in the monstrosity of the catastrophe here in New York.  

I'd like to share a few stories with you.

My husband, Joe, owns a business - a Renewal by Anderson window company. He services all of Long Island, New York City, and Brooklyn.  People in some of these areas are still without power. Joe went out and purchased many generators (he had to send two employees to northern CT to purchase them, as there was none in NY or Long Island to be had).  By doing so, he was able to have the installers install windows in the homes with no electric. He kept all his installation crews working by doing so. Even when he was advised to close the doors for a week or two. Not one of his employees had to sit home and not earn their income. Joe also supplied gasoline (again purchased in northern CT) to all employees so they could come and go to work, thus earning their paychecks. Plus he ordered in an array of hot foods everyday at lunchtime and had all the employees with no electric take the food home with them at the end of the day. His way of making a dent.

One of Joe's installers went to the home of an elderly couple who had no electric and thus no heat. After the installer completed the job, he hooked the generator up to their home so they could have electric and heat. On his own time into the wee hours of the morning, he would stand for hours on the gas lines to purchase some gasoline for this couple's generator, drive it all the way back to them, put the gas in the generator, and checked on the couple to see if they needed anything. He did this over and over until their electric was turned back on. Another dent made.


That is sand this car is buried in. Sand from
the ocean many blocks away.
A woman in my church has a daughter and son-in-law who do not know The LORD. But, on his days off from work, the son-in-law stayed up all night cooking. He then loaded up his van with the food and stenos and drove to Oceanside, a town devastated. (Quite the town name, huh?). He pulled up and just started setting up tables with the stenos and food. People started coming to him, crying. "You are the ONLY person who has come to help us. Thank you." He heard that over and over. Dent.


Water produces mold; therefore EVERYTHING must
be thrown out.
I went to purchase contractor-strength black garbage bags from our local Ace Hardware store. When the clerk asked why I was buying so many, I told her "hurricane relief" work. She became emotional and went and told another clerk. He, in turn, gave me a 10% discount. His way of making a dent.

Dent upon dent, we continue on. I guess that's how you spell relief.

Thank you to all of you who have prayed. Please continue to do so, as it's cold here now in New York. The heat is on in my home 24/7. But, there are still so many who still cannot warm themselves or shower; those who don't even have a couch any longer to sit on. 

We bless God for the opportunities to make dents. We bless God for allowing us the opportunity to be His Hands and Feet. We bless God that He has called us to be dent-makers wherever and whenever we can. 

Because of Him and Unto Him,




~~~

This post is linked up to Tell Me A Story


Tuesday, November 13, 2012

OK, So What If?!

I'm not a politically minded person, but this is something that God has been personally challenging me with; therefore, I share it with you my friends. And I apologize in advance for the length of this post.

Many Americans are disappointed about this Presidential election. Obviously though, many more are joyous. Those who are disappointed may be wondering about the state of our nation - the decline of society as we know it, and what the results of this election will mean for us in the future. 

As Americans, we have the Constitutional right to bear arms to protect our families and properties. But a movement is surfacing within The Body of Christ. And it's getting louder and louder. Doomsayers are spreading a new "gospel" of fear and violence by boldly professing to prepare for what is coming by stockpiling goods, weapons, and ammunition. Kill in order to protect your food is their mantra. They are very vocal about their negative feelings about our government, yet we are told by God to pray for those in authority in our nation. They are seriously proselytizing. They are seriously on a mission to win others to their "mission". 

Our Lord Jesus Christ tells us to not give thought about tomorrow (Matt. 5:34). And He tells us specifically in Psalm 37 not to fret because of evildoers because they will be cut down; therefore, trust in The LORD. The true Gospel of Jesus Christ points us in a different direction. A different way of life. A different way of thinking, believing, and behavior than those in the world. And Jesus Christ, Himself, has told us in Matthew 7:15-20 that we will know them - the ravenous wolves in sheep's clothing - by their fruits. And we must know The Word of God for ourselves in order to be discerning.  We must become fruit inspectors to those within our church walls who are bold and brazen to win us over to their side. We must be a louder voice than they through our lifestyle and the truth of The Word of God. 

The United States of America that we once knew is no more. I think we all know that. We have quietly but quickly become a socialistic nation. Fr. Andrew was invited to lead the opening prayer at the 2012 Colorado Republican State Assembly and Convention in the Magness Arena at the University of Denver.  If you haven't already seen this YouTube clip, I encourage you to watch this in its entirety. 

But, for those of us who are true Believers, Followers of Christ - Christians - our lives are in the Hand of God. It is in Him Whom we trust, isn't it?

Isn't it?!  Or is that just a nice little saying on our money?  

Are we relying on hoarding, weaponry, and violence rather than The Spirit of The LORD God Almighty Who will bestow Wisdom, provision, and protection? I dare say there is quickly becoming a new dividing line in our nation.  Not Republican vs. Democrat, but Christian vs. "Christian".  Truly, a sign of our times. 

What might The Spirit of God be saying to His people through the outcome of this election?  Selah

The following quote by Richard Stearns, President of World Vision was put before us at church on Sunday: 
What if God wants the church to “go back to the basics" of living as Disciples of Christ - living missionally for Christ and demonstrating The Gospel in tangible ways within our schools, workplaces, and communities?
Christians can stop worrying about the symbols of the decline of Christian America and get back to the mission Jesus gave us to show the world a different way to live – a way that demonstrates the great character of God: His love, His justice, His compassion, His forgiveness, and His reconciliation. 
So, I ask myself and you, "What if?"

What if we stopped worrying about future catastrophes and planning for a violent doomsday with the "right" to protect our "stuff" - and started really living the true Gospel?  Selah

What if whatever lies ahead for us as Americans at the hand of our government, we, as The Body of Christ, demonstrate a different way to live?  Selah 

What if we began to live a life of radical faith in the God we claim to believe in?  Selah

What if we lived a life of unconditional love, grace, mercy, and compassion to those not so deserving?  Selah

What if we gave away to those in need rather than hoarding for some future event that may or may not happen in our lifetime?  Selah

What if we trusted God to provide for us, protect us, and to use us as His instrument of provision for others?  Selah

What if our words are seasoned with grace toward a President and government policies we may not agree with?  Selah

What if we prayed more and verbalized less?  Selah

What if we stopped preaching doomsday and started sharing The Truth of God's Word to encourage and strengthen each other for the days that are coming.  Selah

In the dark days ahead, we have a tremendous opportunity - and I dare say, responsibility - to be the Mouth, Hands, Feet, and Heart of our Lord Jesus Christ to a lost and decaying society. We MUST let our Light shine in the darkness that surrounds us. Darkness can only envelop us if our Light goes out. If it stays lit, darkness will be kept at bay.

No government policy can cause a heart warmed with God's Love to grow cold. Selah    

No government policy can cause a heart filled with faith to lose trust and hope in our God and His Word. Selah

No government policy can cause God not to provide for His children.  Selah

No government policy can cause a heart saturated with The Word of God to be less Christ-like. Selah

And no opposing anti-Christ(ian) voices can nullify The Truth of the Character of The LORD God Almighty to save, heal, protect, and provide for His children because He is a Loving Father. Selah


So, may our Light so shine before men 
that they see our good works 
and glorify our Father in Heaven (Matt. 5:16)
no matter how dark and depraved our nation becomes.
Then, and only then,
can we live up to the name "Christian". 
Selah


Because of Him and Unto Him,


Thursday, November 8, 2012

Divine Knock, Knock...

The Word of God was active, living, powerful yesterday. 
SHARPER than any two-edged sword.
PIERCING soul and spirit.  
DISCERNING the thoughts and intents of the heart.

And it started with a knock at my door yesterday in the midst of the Noreaster we were having. Someone needed prayer. 

As she began sharing her heart, I sat there a little stunned.

What she was "confessing" to me, was the same EXACT thing I was struggling with. EXACTLY. It had to do with our attitudes about the same EXACT thing.


Was God toying with me? What's going on here?


I was so tempted to be spiritual. After all, she sought me to pray for her. Didn't I owe it to her to be spiritual? Isn't that why God sent her to me - so I could minister to her?

But, in a moment's time, I "confessed" right back to her. Her surprised look made me feel like I did the wrong thing by exposing myself. I sat there thinking she's thinking, "Oh, great! How can she help me?"

But, that was the devil's lie. We both sat there in a moment of silence, looking into each other's eyes. In that moment, God had us. The two of us. He sliced us both with the Sword of His Word. 

We laughed with joy. We, truly, were both so grateful to the other for our "confessions".  

And the burden of what we both were struggling with lifted from the two of us - simultaneously.

We didn't even need to pray long. We said quick prayers and praised God for the trust between us; for His work in the both of us.
Confess your trespasses to one another, and pray for one another, that you may be healed. ~ James 5:16 
That is why God sent her to me. 
He knew I needed The Sword turned in on ME!
That I might be healed.
And that she, too, would be healed.

Hallelujah! 

I love when I see Scriptures active in my life, and I praise God for His Divine knock at my door!

Because of Him and Unto Him,

Tuesday, November 6, 2012

Profound Words

I just read Jesus Christ's Words as recorded in Matthew 5:48b in The Message version of the Bible.
Live out your God-created identity. Live generously and graciously toward others, the way God lives toward you.
Whoa!  Live generously and graciously toward others, THE WAY GOD LIVES TOWARD YOU...

In other words, let's Pay It Forward...


The way God has toward us!

May we live out our God-created identities in such a manner that it pionts others to God.  
Here’s another way to put it: You’re here to be light, bringing out the God-colors in the world. God is not a secret to be kept. We’re going public with this, as public as a city on a hill. If I make you Light-bearers, you don’t think I’m going to hide you under a bucket, do you? I’m putting you on a light stand. Now that I’ve put you there on a hilltop, on a light stand—shine! Keep open house; be generous with your lives. By opening up to others, you’ll prompt people to open up with God, this generous Father in Heaven.             ~ Matthew 5:14-16 (The Message Version)
Because of Him and Unto Him,


Sunday, November 4, 2012

A Womb and A Tomb? No Problem!

Expect a Miracle! 

That is a sign in my kitchen. I've lived my life by that expectation. Jesus Christ - the Miracle Doer - is the same yesterday, today, and tomorrow; AND He is no respecter of persons. 

If you need a miracle in your life, let me encourage you with this. Claire Vorster  (of Claire's Teaparty) shared this quote on our churches' blog:

The life of Jesus is bracketed by two impossibilities: a virgin’s womb and an empty tomb. Jesus entered our world through a door marked No Entrance and left through a door marked No Exit.” ~ Peter Larson 
Then Claire wrote: 
So when you want to believe but you can’t, when you are plagued by a lie and cannot find comfort in the truth, when you are alone, when the darkness is closing in, here comes a humble Man riding on a donkey, see His Nail-scarred Hands reaching for yours.” ~ Claire Vorster
What impossibilities seem to have bracketed your life or the life of someone you love?  Don't keep your eyes on the "impossibles", keep them on The Nail-scarred Hands reaching for yours.

  With God, ALL things are possible! 
Dare to believe. It will no longer be impossible!

Because of Him and Unto Him,