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"PREPARING FOR THE DAYS AHEAD
WHEN DOES LOVE EQUAL CALAMITY?"
by Jeanette Reed
Words for Our Time
"How could love ever be expressed through calamity?"
Sometimes we read or hear words of prophecy which include warning or caution for our time. These are hard to accept, and the temptation is to ignore or reject them. After all, we are bombarded with bad news from media and newspapers everyday.
So we can be assured that any revelation He gives us is from an unchanging God who is love. That's a difficult thought in our world where love often means self-satisfaction, meeting our needs, comfort, and happiness.
Partner with God Where You Are
First, let's look at how great the love of
the Father is. No matter what the plans are, it is incredible that the Lord God
Almighty reveals His plans to us. He doesn't owe us anything. He is not
incomplete. He is God--complete, perfect and holy. What an amazing thing it
is for the Lord God Almighty to not only make known His plans, but to invite us
to participate in prayer and mission.
Since God created mankind, He has been inviting, commissioning, commanding, and desiring that we would partner with Him. Whatever marketplace job you currently have, have you pondered that God has placed you there with the intent that you would partner with Him in accomplishing His will for the people around you?
Have you pondered that God has placed you where you are with the
intent that you would partner with Him to advance His Kingdom? If you have never pondered that, then I am pleased to announce to you
that God has indeed given you that particular post, so that He would be
glorified through you, and His Kingdom would advance by the work of His Jr.
Once you absorb that thought, how do you know how to partner unless you know His game plan? All of a sudden, the nudges from the Holy Spirit become a little more important, don't they? The insights He brings through Scripture takes on a new significance, and prophecy becomes more welcome.
He Will be Glorified
"Give thanks, for the Lord is good."
We have heard several words of caution for
the year 2007. I believe we would be wise to heed these words and to seek the
Lord for what He has for us to do in these days. And I believe the Lord
calls us not to focus on any event that may come, but to take to heart the
urgency of the days, and to step boldly into our callings and proclaim the
Kingdom of Christ to the ends of the earth.
For some time, we have received words of warning from the Lord. We have been given words calling us to repentance from our selfish ways, and to surrender in obedience to God's commission for His church. The Lord has been at work to correct and encourage us. As individuals, as the church, and as a nation, we have received warnings to turn from unrighteous ways and to seek righteousness in Christ Jesus.
I believe the days of warning are coming to a close and we are well into the days of preparation. I believe the days of God's correction are upon us. This is from God's mercy and love. It is not a time of fear or panic. It is a time to give thanks, for the Lord is good. Whatever comes, for those who are found in Christ Jesus, there is nothing to fear.
"For the grace of God has appeared, bringing salvation for all people, training us to renounce ungodliness and worldly passions, and to live self-controlled, upright, and Godly lives in the present age, waiting for our blessed hope, the appearing of the glory of our great God and Savior Jesus Christ, who gave Himself for us to redeem us from all lawlessness and to purify for Himself a people for His own possession who are zealous for good works." Titus 2:11-14
The Lord is calling His sons and daughters to serve without fear of man or traditions. He is calling us out of complacency and calling us to hear His voice and to obey. We can no longer stand in His way. All glory and honor belongs to Him and Him alone. We are to be His faithful Bride preparing for her Bridegroom.
God is holy and His name will be glorified. He is building His church, the body with Christ as the Head. God loves us so! How He longs for us to live in the freedom won by our Lord Jesus Christ. God's love is perfect. It is not the superficial fickle love we are tempted by in the world. His love brings life to dry bones.
How He longs for us to humble ourselves and fall before His throne, for only He is worthy to be praised. When we quiet ourselves and simply seek Him, oh how wonderful the refreshment that comes! What could we possibly seek, but to dwell in the shadow of the wings of the Most High?
A Vision of Calamity
"The Lord told me, 'We are to be prepared.'"
Three years ago, the Lord showed me a vision of a time of calamity. This was part of a larger vision imparted two decades ago, during a visitation from the Lord Jesus. The larger vision was of a time when God would correct the church in a time of calamity to bring repentance, healing, and revival. The ending scene is of multitudes worshipping the Lord Jesus. What a beautiful sight! There will be a time of anointing for the church. The Lord will pour out His healing, and the gifts of the Spirit will be increased.
The scene the Lord showed me for the time of calamity was of
"a fire." A city lay in rubble and everything was gray. It came
suddenly. Communication was gone, infrastructure was gone.
I believe this is coming soon. I do not know if it
is terrorist attack or natural disaster. But I hear the Lord saying,
"It is coming."
The second part of the scene was of ports and cities. There were lines going from city to city. Multiple cities will be affected, and multiple cities will have places of refuge and relational connections of communities of faith.
The third scene was of people walking across mountains and hills.
There were places of safety and many came to faith along the way.
The Lord told me, "We are to be prepared." Some will gather water, some will grow food, some will gather tents or beds, and some will gather wood. Everyone should have the word of God planted firmly in their hearts.
He showed me a bulletin board where people agreed to leave messages.
He showed me homes of refuge where people would gather. He will impart His wisdom into His people that many will seek Him through His children.
The Lord said that
we are not to go into hiding nor to become idle.
We are to move into
action to advance His Kingdom for revival tarries only because of our inaction.
He showed an army coming out of Russia/China and coming across the Middle East and into Africa. Then Africa was surrounded, and we could no longer get in. There was a treasure in the earth being dug up. I believe the current prompting for so many to reach the people groups of Africa is because the time is short.
The Lord said to beware a false peace treaty and to watch for Damascus. Many will be taken in by false teachings and turn away from Truth.
Most importantly, the Lord said this is a time when many will come to faith. Do not fear. Be watchful and have a listening heart for the voice of our Great Shepherd. Arise church and proclaim the Gospel of the Kingdom for the days are short.
I do not believe we are to focus on the disaster that is coming.
We are to prepare in whatever way He prompts, remaining faithful to the Lord enduring to the end with joy. We are
to take every opportunity to advance His Kingdom.
These warnings are a call to prayer and a call to action, for the urgency of those who have not heard the name of Jesus must penetrate our hearts.
Whatever calling God has given you, take the steps of faith to engage now. Whatever assignment the Lord has given you in the marketplace, step with the intention of bringing the Kingdom of Christ into that place.
Wherever you live, reach out to your neighbors with the Gospel of the Kingdom as if the time were short.
"Do you not say, 'There are yet four months, then comes the harvest'? Look, I tell you, lift up your eyes, and see that the fields are white for harvest." John 4:35
An archive of Jeanette's articles can be seen at:
a bondservant of Jesus Christ who works with Heart For Africa and Church On The Hill
The Christian Community Prayer
1 He that dwelleth in the secret place of the most High shall abide under the shadow of the Almighty.
2 I will say of the LORD, He is my refuge and my fortress: my God; in him will I trust.
3 Surely he shall deliver thee from the snare of the fowler, and from the noisome pestilence.
4 He shall cover thee with his feathers, and under his wings shalt thou trust: his truth shall be thy shield and buckler.
5 Thou shalt not be afraid for the terror by night; nor for the arrow that flieth by day;
6 Nor for the pestilence that walketh in darkness; nor for the destruction that wasteth at noonday.
7 A thousand shall fall at thy side, and ten thousand at thy right hand; but it shall not come nigh thee.
8 Only with thine eyes shalt thou behold and see the reward of the wicked.
9 Because thou hast made the LORD, which is my refuge, even the most High, thy habitation;
10 There shall no evil befall thee, neither shall any plague come nigh thy dwelling.
11 For he shall give his angels charge over thee, to keep thee in all thy ways.
12 They shall bear thee up in their hands, lest thou dash thy foot against a stone.
13 Thou shalt tread upon the lion and adder: the young lion and the dragon shalt thou trample under feet.
14 Because he hath set his love upon me, therefore will I deliver him: I will set him on high, because he hath known my name.
15 He shall call upon me, and I will answer him: I will be with him in trouble; I will deliver him, and honor him.
16 With long life will I satisfy him, and shew him my salvation.
VISION 2 ADVANCE
"Kingdom reality in the marketplace and everyday life"
Advancing through Transformed Lives and Authentic Relationships
Get Thee Behind Me Satan!
By David Ravenhill www.davidravenhill.net
If you are unfamiliar with the words of this title, let me remind you that they were spoken by Jesus in response to Peter's rebuke of him. Ahh! Now you recall the incident. Jesus has just asked the disciples what people were saying about him. "Some say you are John the Baptist, Elijah, Jeremiah or one of the prophets…" they explained. Jesus went on to tell them that he was going to Jerusalem where he would suffer many things, including the fact that he would be killed. Peter immediately rebuked him for his 'negative confession'. After all, this was the last thing the disciples had in mind for their beloved master and potential King.
There is little doubt that the disciples fully expected Jesus to overthrow Rome's dominance and reinstate the Kingdom to Israel by some miraculous display of power. This talk about suffering and death was the furthest thing from their minds. They were looking for a coronation, not a crucifixion. They were anticipating a time of celebration, liberation, and restoration. Not a season of suffering, rejection and opposition. Following his rebuke to Peter, "Get behind me, Satan!" Jesus added, "you are a stumbling block to me; for you are not setting your mind on God's interests, but man's".
Could it be that the Lord is saying the same thing to the American Church? Like the disciples of old, we have had our hearts set on a Republican 'coronation'. We prayed earnestly, fervently and passionately that God would answer 'our interests'. Numerous prophetic words circulated that God was about to turn the tide of popular opinion and give us what 'we' wanted – King McCain and Queen Palin.
I'm absolutely convinced that God has His best interests at heart, and that no amount of pleading on the part of the Church is going to change HIS mind. Seldom if ever does the Church thrive during times of prosperity. God warned Israel over and over again that after giving them the Promised Land that they would soon forget him. America has forgotten their God while enjoying a land that 'flows with milk and honey'.
Yes, things are about to change. I believe we are heading into some rough weather. A major depression looms on the horizon, not to mention a growing movement of hatred against the Church. We have seen only the beginning as an estimated one million gay activists took to the streets recently in protest of their rights to gay marriage. We are going to experience increased pressure from society to accept more and more of their liberal values as the norm. Rejecting them will only further their hatred of the Church. Another time bomb is the growing threat of the militant Muslim agenda already at work throughout our nation.
Jesus warned us about these things by stating "You will be hated by all nations for my name's sake". We refused to believe him, believing instead that as Americans we have a Constitution and a Bill of Rights that will come to our defense. Times are changing. America is changing. The Church needs to prepare for persecution, suffering, opposition and rejection.
By now some of you are about to rebuke me for my negative talk. Let's face it. Whose interests are we really concerned about? God's or our own? I believe the Church's best days are still to come. There is nothing like opposition, rejection and persecution to fertilize the growth of the Church. Don't get me wrong, I'm not a sadist who delights in torturing myself, nor do I sleep on a bed of nails or wear a horse hair shirt. I am , though, sufficiently familiar with God's Word and His ways to know that He will do whatever is necessary to bring forth his purposes. Even if that means putting his interests before our own.
It's time for some of you to read again the Prophet Habakkuk. This prophetic intercessor cried out repeatedly for God to intervene and do something. Israel was filled with violence, destruction and every type of evil. Everywhere he turned, he saw justice perverted and the Law ignored. Feeling that God was ignorant of what was going on he reminds God repeatedly of what he is seeing. He even seems to blame God for not listening or caring. God eventually responds that He is at work and is raising up the Chaldeans. Habakkuk can barely believe what he is hearing. Let me interpret this for you if I may. Intercessors all over America have been crying out for God to do something, believing that God would turn the nation toward McCain. Instead, God says, " I am doing something. I'm raising up Obama."
The last three verses of Habakkuk are so timely for the American Church.
"Though the Republican Party does not win, and there is no hope of a future conservative Supreme Court. Though the Senate and Congress are controlled by the Democrats and taxes will go through the roof. Though we may well be entering another Great Depression with huge unemployment, and the rationing of food due to famine…..
YET will I rejoice in the Lord
I will rejoice in the God of my salvation.
The Lord God is my strength
And He makes my feet like hind's feet,
And He makes me walk in high places."
Andrew Strom Quote From His 9/10/2010 Newsletter
"If you have read our stuff for awhile you will know that I am not just a believer in "Revival". And not just "Reformation" either. I am a believer in the fullness of Christ's glorious Church - the Bride of Christ displayed before all the world in her full purity and power.
The sad thing is, we have never seen anything like that in our lifetime.
Of course we see this glorious church in the Book of Acts - in places like Jerusalem and Antioch. And we get glimpses of her again down through history - in times of "Great Awakening".
The glorious Bride of Christ tends not to meet in 'cathedrals'. She does not shut herself away from the world behind four walls. She is out amongst the poor and needy - preaching the pure gospel, helping the widows, praying for the sick. Just like Jesus was not hidden away, she is not hidden away.
A lot of people think that "House churches" are the most biblical form of church structure. (I am a fan of House churches myself).
But we need to realize that the true church was born in the open air.
She was born in "Solomon's Porch". She was born in the 'Courtyard of the Gentiles'. A lot of people do not understand this - and so miss something very significant.
The Bible says that the early church in Jerusalem met every day in the huge temple courtyard - a massive open-air space about the size of five football fields. There were "porticos" all around the edge - and "Solomon's Porch" was the one where the apostles would stand and preach. Where do you think all those miracles were done? Where do you think the 'Gate Beautiful' was - where the lame man was healed? Where do you think Jesus drove out the money-changers? Where do you think Jesus Himself preached when He was in Jerusalem? -In the 'Courtyard of the Gentiles'.
The early church was an "open air" church and a "house meeting"church. There was no such thing as 'cathedrals' or church buildings for centuries. She fed the widows, she clothed the orphans, she preached a pure gospel to the poor. She did miracles in the open air.
This is the glorious church that Jesus is wanting to display again before the end. This is His beautiful Bride - in all her fullness. And my friends, we simply cannot afford to settle for less.
What got me thinking again along these lines was this earthquake in the city of Christchurch. A lot of the old cathedrals and church buildings there have been seriously damaged. Maybe it is time to leave them behind. Maybe it is time for Christ's glorious church to come forth again - outside the walls that are blocking us from the very world we are called to reach."
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