You are currently browsing the monthly archive for July 2008.
I’m having trouble doing two things (blogs) at once. And though I do appreciate the readership here at GatePost, I’m trying not to feel guilty about the infrequency. The battle for LIFE in South Dakota has begun again and my free-time is mainly focused there. If you miss regular posting here from me you can read the latest from me on my LIFE blog – voicescarryblog.com.
Here are three recent but very important posts that you many find interesting.
My son Caleb put up a nice little pic on his blog that you may appreciate. He gets to vote this year for the first time. You’ll note he’s starting to lean toward one side : ) Caleb has some strong views. I don’t know where he got this from. We move him to KC for school NEXT WEEK – I’m not sure how I feel about this chapter of life coming to a close.
For a few months my son Thomas and I have been looking for a Mustang ($3-4K range) so he can drive to school this fall. He’s pretty set on a Mustang and has been for a while. He’s got some pics on his blog of one that we found ($2K over budget). I know he’d appreciate the traffic on his blog – so be sure to check it out. He finds blogging discouraging because “nobody reads his.” He’d even more appreciate others joining him fasting and praying for this extra “miracle money” to somehow appear so he can buy this car. He knows we won’t be making a covenant with a creditor.
Funny story… I told him the only thing I don’t like about him getting a hot car like this is that he’d get into popularity/girls and his relationship with God would really suffer. He said, “no, if he had this car it would really help his relationship with God because he’d wake up every day praising God and drive down the road with praise music everywhere he went.”
THIS JUST IN: MILWAUKEE – A Milwaukee man was accused of shooting his lawn mower because it wouldn’t start. Keith Walendowski, 56, was charged with felony possession of a short-barreled shotgun or rifle and misdemeanor disorderly conduct while armed. According to the criminal complaint, Walendowski said he was angry because his Lawn Boy wouldn’t start Wednesday morning. He told police quote, “I can do that, it’s my lawn mower and my yard so I can shoot it if I want.” A woman who lives at Walendowski’s house reported the incident. She said he was intoxicated. Walendowski could face up to an $11,000 fine and six years and three months in prison if convicted.
If your horse won’t get up, what do you do? Shoot it. I think a man ought to be able to shoot his own lawnmover in his own yard (if he lives outside of town). This made me smile, maybe it will you. Those of you who have been around me know that I like to shoot stuff. Deep down inside every man and boy is a desire to shoot something. Gals, don’t try to understand it. God put it there – it’s a part of that whole protect and provide thing. Mix it with a little anger and alcohol and I’d advise you hide everything that doesn’t start or move fast enough.
Good satire is something I very much appreciate and this is about as good as it gets – and, it touches key areas of interest and involvement for me – Scripture and Society, Politics and Eschatology. Today Gerard Baker put forth this piece in the London Times. I’ll also paste it below. We are living in very interesting times and those who are in “watch and pray” mode are being given much to mull over. Your thoughts and comments on this are very welcome.
July 25, 2008 – The Times
He ventured forth to bring light to the world
The anointed one’s pilgrimage to the Holy Land is a miracle in action – and a blessing to all his faithful followers
And it came to pass, in the eighth year of the reign of the evil Bush the Younger (The Ignorant), when the whole land from the Arabian desert to the shores of the Great Lakes had been laid barren, that a Child appeared in the wilderness. Read the rest of this entry »
I may philosophize here a bit… Watching things grow is both fascinating and frustrating. The fields all around my place are today seven feet tall with corn – we’ve seen days with six inches of growth in one day. The garden is another amazing thing to slow down and watch grow. Early on things were tentative as stressors (even enemies – deer, rabbits, bugs, wind) fought against growth. Weeding, strategically placed bullets, staking, blocking wind, watering, fertilizing all helped the plants press through key stages.
Watching my kids grow is both fascinating and frustrating. There have been days I wish they were further along and days when time flew by and I’ve lamented they grew up too quickly. Watching church growth, or working toward church growth, has taught me more about the patience of God with us than anything else. But on our end, I’m struck by the simple observation that things grow when they are planted. Kids grow better when planted in stable and loving two parent homes (every study confirms this). Churches grow better when people settle in and love and serve God and each other for the long haul. There are many who want to grow, or who think they are growing, but resist being planted. Jesus spoke about us (you-plural) being branches that must abide and remain in the vine (himself).
Most human growth, I’m told, happens at night. Of course, this is a time when no one is watching. Spiritual growth is no different – it happens when no one is watching, and even especially during the dark moments. Interesting how those key growth moments are the moments people tend to pull away from others in the Body.
One of my frequent sayings at CATG is that it’s not God’s Will you be in the same place spiritually you were last year this time, or five years ago. I suggest we “mark the wall” every year and measure ourselves against that mark several times a years. Ask the hard questions, why am I not growing? Make sure you are growing evenly – in wisdom, stature, favor with God and man. We can grow smarter but lose our tender heart toward God. Strategically place “bullets” on that which is stifling your growth. Really, kill it or it’ll kill you. Never pull yourself away from environments that facilitate growth. Monitor your growth in God.
The answer to the question – can God heal Fibromyalgia? - is YES! The Bible says, he forgives all our sins and heals ALL our diseases! (Psalm 103:3) There isn’t one disease or diagnosis that is beyond his ability or desire to heal today. I hope that is a hopeful truth for somebody who is hurting right now.
I’m led to post on this topic today because people very close to me, whom I love dearly, are getting pummeled by Fibromyalgia. We have seen God physically heal people here at Church at the Gate in numbers into the three digits. However, we have only seen what I’d call temporary relief as we pray for healing from Fibromyalgia so far. Also, I’m hearing Fibromyalgia being regularly called out through the Word of Knowledge in healing and revival meetings throughout America – I do believe the Great Physician is giving great and full victory to many people from this devasting infirmity. I have more many more questions than answers – so pardon my ignorance – is this only an American malady? I’ve seen/heard nothing of it in the healing meetings I’ve attended overseas. I want to hear from those of you who have been freed of Fibromyalgia where ever you are.
If you, or anyone you know has been healed by God from Fibromyalgia, please share your story here in the comment section of this post. The Bible says we overcome by the blood of the Lamb and the WORD OF OUR TESTIMONY. If you have been healed of Fibromyalgia, please share your testimony for the benefit of others here. If you have experienced any victory from Fibromyalgia through Christian healing prayer, please share that here. If you know of someone who has been supernaturally healed of Fibromyalgia, encourage them to share their testimony here.
Our local newspaper today did a brief story on “Mysterious Fibromyalgia.” (The link is to the original article in the Jackson Clarion Ledger.) The subheading is “Chronic pain brings on insomnia, depression, loss of brain activity and IS INCURABLE.” The last two words paint a hopeless picture. Here’s the opening paragraph of the artcle…
Imagine hurting all over, every day, with a physical exhaustion that never completely subsides, not even with adequate sleep and rest. Add insomnia, brain fog, and depression. The worst part – there’s no cure. Sufferers of fibromyalgia don’t have to imagine that nightmare. They live it. Daily.
The article gives these facts… according to the National Fibromyalgia Association, 3-6% of the population suffers from it. Women are most affected by it. And, there are physicians that don’t believe the disease even exists.
I’ve spoken recently with some of our doctors and it’s a mixed bag – some think it’s a “catch all” diagnosis for something that no one can really explain. One said she never saw these symtoms twenty years ago and now she sees them every day in her office. Others say “its real” and relief can be found in various treatments – acupuncture, chiropractic care, osteopathy, pain meds, etc. but that there is no cure or any real understanding of root causes. I’ve spoken to some of our counselors and mental health people about it – some say they have found it relates to previous trauma or (sexual) abuse. Some of my friends in healing and deliverance ministry also say this is the case, and this is how a demonic spirit of infirmity first gains access – through some trauma or abuse. I was given a Gulf War Vet newsletter minutes ago that says the United States military now lists Fibromyalgia at the top of the list of Post-traumatic Stress Disorder manifestations.
I am no expert, nor am I a doctor. Those of you reading this who suffer from Fibromyagia know light years more about this than I. If you are struggling with Fibromyalgia, I hope you’ll join the conversation here and dialog with others who comment here about their victory. I do welcome you to comment about your journey into supernatural healing and even mentioning how people have prayed for you in not-very-helpful-ways (as long as you stay positive about it). I think there is something to learn from unsuccessful well-intentioned attempts at divine healing.
I seek no controversial debate or attack here, nor do I want to lay a lack-of-faith guilt-trip on those who honestly and desperately desire a touch from God. I have a pastoral heart and desire to see God touch peoples lives. I’ve seen him do amazing things and I know he loves people. I’m throwing this post out there to solicit comments from people who’ve seen God heal Fibromyalgia. The most valuable thing about this post is not in what I have to say, it will be in what these folks share. In fact, I probably won’t offer much in the comments section because again, I’m not an expert and have little more to say. I would welcome comments from people in healing and deliverance ministries who have insights into how to pray for healing for people suffering from Fibromyalgia and more importantly, what are the spiritual dynamics behind this infirmity. The article I quoted above said there is some thought that this is genetic. But even there, I don’t want this to be a medical discussion. I’m asking for testimonies of how God healed people of Fibromyalgia and graceful dialog about the spiritual realities here. I’m hoping hope comes forth.
Here are just a couple “rules” for this post and commenting. I don’t want to hear anything about turning to Buddhism for relief or anything like TM, yoga, Oprah, or anything other than Jesus and Biblical Christianity. If you suggest anything else is our hope, I’ll delete that comment immediately. Jesus is our only hope. If you are among those who’ve given up hope concluding Fibromyalgia is your “lot in life” I’d rather you not share that here either. If you think it’s God’s Will that you are sick, I’d rather that get discussed elsewhere also. Not here. Really, if we are unsure it’s God’s Will we have relief from Fibromyagia we better sort that out before we even go to a doctor seeking relief. With that thinking, taking meds would go against what God wants for you. I don’t like to debate if healing is God’s will and don’t want to open that can of worms here. I just want to pray for the sick and let God be God. I want to hear testimonies of the grace of God. I do know God uses suffering and that there are redemptive purposes for pain but I also know one of the reasons God allows sickness is to reveal himself as Healer.
My sole purpose and hope in bringing this up is to provide a place where one beggar can share with another beggar where they found bread. I’m not the baker. But I know the answer is in the one who multiplies the loaves.
There are now over seventy million blogs in existence most of which are created on eight leading blog hosting sites each of which host upwards to one million or more blogs. WordPress is one of the big eight. With those numbers, how is it my blog made #72 on WordPress’ BLOG OF THE DAY list yesterday? I promise it won’t go to my head. Right now I’m figuring it’s a bit like getting the letter that says you’ve been selected to win a million dollars.
Does anyone know what this means?
ABC Nightline’s feature last night on Todd Bentley and the Florida Healing Outpouring was hardly favorable. Is anyone surprised? Gnat-straining camel swallowers in the Body of Christ were given much to delight and gloat over. The lost watching world was shown what the devil would want them to see. Todd Bentley was surely disappointed. Obadiah 1:12 came to me early this morning… “Do not gloat over your brother’s day of misfortune.” I’m sure few, if any, among those in the seat of scoffers will be restrained by this verse, or any other, for that matter.
I’ve been to the meetings in Lakeland. It was apparent to me the ABC Nightline folks went there to get the angle they were after and they got it. They missed much as well. They found a precious wheelchair-bound girl on the streets of Lakeland who has had multiple unfortunate encounters with the revival’s street evangelism teams who, no doubt with good intentions, invited (and probably pressured) her to the attend the healing meetings. She shared the pain of people being insensitive to her. I could fully relate as my father-in-law has been wheelchair-bound for nearly 60 years since he contracted polio at age 14. My wife has numerous stories growing up of being in places like the parking lot at Billy Graham Crusades being accosted by people on the way out that told him he’d “get up out of the chair if he only had faith.” This isn’t what the street evangelism teams told the girl in Lakeland, but the effect was the same. I attended the street evangelism training in Lakeland last month and yes, they do need to give people a briefing on sensitivity to the feelings of the infirmed before they send them out.
But, the faithful hitting the streets in Lakeland have something the rest of the church doesn’t, that being… boldness. They are not sent forth with a spirit of timidity, but rather full bold faith in the power of God. Can a person walking in apostolic boldness simultaneously walk in great sensitivity? Yes. But this is a grace that doesn’t typically come initially. Boldness must be tempered by wisdom and discernment. Rather than criticize the street evangelism teams, we need to pray that they walk in wisdom and power, love and compassion.
ABC Nightline could have worked harder to find positive encounters out there on the street – like the lady I heard about when I was there who was planning to commit suicide the day she met a loving couple from the revival in a grocery store parking lot. That lady was baptized in love and hope in that parking lot and gave her life to Jesus Christ.
ABC Nightline found a local shop keeper who viewed the revival negatively. Maybe they should have interviewed the mayor and city council members and got a comment or two on the fact that Todd Bentley, who for 100 days has brought 5000-10,000 people daily to the city, is responsible for bringing millions and millions and millions of dollars into the city’s economy. I’d guess there are mayors all over America who would love to have something like this grace their city. Instead they predictably dug up Bentley’s dark past but neglected to report on his dramatic conversion to Jesus Christ and subsequent dozen years of ministry to the poor, the orphans and hurting worldwide.
ABC Nightline is incapable of any sort of favorable story on anything remotely Christian. I’m not even convinced they are telling the truth when they reported “not one single miracle could be independently verified.” Wow- that went across the airwaves turning the hearts of many against what is happening in Lakeland. But, I can point them to a verifiable miracle. I’ve even seen doctors on the platform in Lakeland standing alongside the healed to testify. Those stewarding the revival apparently need to spoon-feed stories to the media in their media packet but even then, Jesus spoke of a deep-seated societal unbelief, so deep that people won’t even be convinced when the dead are raised right before their eyes. ABC Nightline has a deep-seated disbelief for sure. The light is veiled from their eyes.
But hello, again, getting ABC Nightline to do a favorable story on anything Christian is about as likely as getting the Code Pink gals to do a favorable piece on the Iraq War. ABC and every other main stream media outlet has a distinct and secular (which means godless or without God) agenda. They are the spokespeople for the godless left and are keenly aware that the only thing standing in the way of gay marriage, abortions and decency in broadcasting is THE CHURCH.
I deal with the media here far more than I like because my role in the abortion battle in our state. More times than I can count I’ve found it maddening that the pro-life position is maligned and misrepresented by the media. We hand them facts and stories and testimonies on a silver platter and they don’t even do a story. We got 100 pro-life doctors together for a press conference in ’06 and we had to beg the media to even show up. Yet, Planned Parenthood propaganda gets released and the media parades it across the headlines. Do we not see that these are the same types “reporting” on what is unfolding in Lakeland. They operate in the same denomic spirit. These are the very people who feed the global warming fears with story after story and fully ignore the vast amount of scientific expertise that says its all hoax and false alarm. Are we surprised they found nothing to verify in Lakeland? I’m not.
Many in my world believe an end-time revival is coming that will spread, in part, due to God touching the main stream media. I first grabbed onto these prophecies in the late 80′s when I lived in Kansas City. I still believe them to be true. However, I also know as we more fully enter the end of the age, the world will rage against the people of God. The people of God will be singled out for ridicule and reproach. Jesus said woe to you when men speak well of you. In other words, if they like us, we apparently aren’t much like Him (Jesus). The same hungry and hurting people who liked and flocked to Jesus are the same people who like and flock to Todd Bentley. The same people who feverishly tried to nail Jesus to the tree are the same types trying to nail Bentley today. That’s interesting to note isn’t it?
If you haven’t been to Lakeland to take this all in first hand, here’s one additional important thing ABC Nightline missed. They missed that there is more going on here than one sees on the stage. Most Christians can only imagine what it would be like to stand in such an atmosphere of faith. In this economy, people who buy airline tickets to get closer to where they hear God is moving are desperately hungry people. God always honors that hunger. Being in a tent with 5000-10000 people with that level of hunger places a heavy draw on heaven to visit earth. I’d rather be in that atmosphere any day than among the “Bible Deists” whose only hope for well-being is that their doctor will continue to dish out their antidepressants week after week. I’d rather be in the room with people who bought airline tickets to get a touch from God than sit in all these scoffing churches with people who aren’t hungry enough to drive a couple miles to church more than 2-3 Sunday mornings a month. This ABC Nightline story could have covered the OBVIOUS spiritual hunger in our land. They could have interviewed people who have given up hope on the pharmaceutical and health care industries, people who have no hope but God.
I hope you’ll also read my other posts on Todd Bentley and the Florida Outpouring. My main focus in all of these is that we ought to be really careful that we are not calling unclean what God has called clean. “For in the same way you judge others, you will be judged, and with the measure you use, it will be measured to you.” Matthew 7:2
Revival in Florida – Todd Bentley and the Seat of Scoffers part one
Florida Healing Outpouring – Todd Bentley and the Seat of Scoffers part two
Florida Healing Outpouring – Todd Bentley and the Seat of Scoffers part three
Florida Healing Outpouring – Todd Bentley and the Angel Emma
Florida Healing Outpouring – Todd Bentley, Violence and the Kingdom of God
Florida Healing Outpouring – Todd Bentley, the manifestations of the Spirit or Kundalini?
Todd Bentley, C. Peter Wagner and apostolic alignment at the Florida Healing Outpouring
Florida Revival – Todd Bentley answers his critics, Dr. Gary S. Greig gets healed and provides an independent theological witness
A parody; the doctrine police take a break from straining gnats at the Lakeland Healing Outpouring to take aim at Psalm 23
Florida Healing Outpouring – Is Todd Bentley a New Age Mystic?
It’s amazing how music connects with the seasons of the heart. There probably hasn’t been one point in my Christian life where I couldn’t quickly point to a song that was really ministering to me at that particular point in time. It’s like jumping from lily pad to lily pad in how I grab on to this song during this season and find myself resting on another one in the next season. Right now, my whole family is “stuck” on the song Beautiful by Phil Wickham (but they tell me Grace Kim does it best). There is a major anointing on this especially when Grace starts singing the ah-ah, a-ah-a -ajhh, ah-a, ah-a-ah, ah – hauntingly beautiful! You don’t get this on Phil’s YouTube version.
The song I’m stuck on right now is Justin Rizzo’s Found Faithful – particularly this line… “I want to be found faithful, I want to be found steady, until the end…” If you have a few minutes to be quiet, listen to it here from the OneThing conference in KC last December. I think I’ve been singing it in my head since then.
Those who know me know I value steadiness and steady people. Inconsistency in the Body of Christ is stifling Kingdom momentum. People, be steady. So many are tossed to and fro – they are hot one day and cold the next – they are fully committed today but you don’t see them tomorrow – they are rowing with you one moment but then something spooks them and it’s all you can to do keep them in the boat.
Steady people stay put. They are dependable and fixed. You can build something lasting and strong with steady people. Unstable people underneath whatever you are building for God is a disaster waiting to happen. Steady people are not thrown off course by offense. Steady people hold a lot of weight. In Galatians 2:9 Paul referred to James, Peter and John as “pillars” in God’s House. God gave me a word a couple years ago that I was to ask him for pillars.
In the history of architecture, pillars came to be as people got creative about expanding the size of their dwellings. Pillars are essential if you want to go up or out with a structure. Do I need to connect the dots for you? The Kingdom of God expands up and out. Pillars are steady and unmoved and they are essential if we are ever to do the big things God is calling us to do.
Steadiness comes with spiritual maturity. It is evidence of being anchored in God and his Word. God is steady and the more time we have with him the more stable we become. Be one who remains, abides – in the secret place and in public. Be fixed and rooted. Faithfulness is one of the fruit of the Spirit. Let it be said of you that you are steady, stable, consistent, reliable, fixed, unmoved, faithful, and planted.
This is a great book! We were blessed during our 12 city Urgency Tour in February to have Danielle and Darlene drive from KC to Church at the Gate here in Sioux Falls to personally deliver 300 copies of Justice Loves Babies so we could give them out to South Dakota pastors. God, raise up a children’s prayer movement for the unborn!