-“It’s Friday, But Sunday’s Coming”

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            (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

“It’s Friday and the Devil and his demons are celebrating…it’s Friday but Sunday’s a comin’…

It’s Friday and the forces that enslave and hold folks down are having a party but that’s Friday…Sunday’s a comin’”

A Quote from my all time favorite Good Friday message: “It’s Friday, but Sunday’s Coming” by Dr. Tony Campolo.

<Read the whole thing on My Answersforthefaith blog>

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-Revival in North Africa

English: North Africa

             (North Africa: Wikipedia)

For hundreds of years very few Muslims came to Christ especially in Northern Africa. But now here is a report of revival going on in those very same difficult lands where Christians are constantly being persecuted.

Tens of thousands of Muslims have been converted to Christ in areas where missionaries are not even allowed and Christians are jailed for sharing their faith. Yet there is a secret revival going on under the most miraculous and difficult circumstances. 

From ASSIST News Service:

A Christian revival is touching the northernmost reaches of Africa. In a region once hostile to the gospel, tens of thousands of Muslims are now following Jesus. Muslims across Northern Africa are converting to faith in Jesus Christ in record numbers.

Speaking in a story by George Thomas for CBN News, Regent University graduate and filmmaker Tino Qahosh said, “What God is doing in North Africa, all the way from actually Mauritanian to Libya is unprecedented in the history of missions.”

Qahoush has spent years traveling the region to document the transformation.He said, “I have the privilege of recording testimonies and listening to firsthand stories of men and women, of all ages where they can be sitting in a room and see the appearance and the presence of God appear to them in reality, like a vision, some of them gave me stories of how they carry on a conversation, it’s not just a light that appears.”

He added that he sometimes feels jealous. “How come Jesus is visiting the Muslim world at this time and age and we don’t hear that happening in the traditional Christian community?”

Thomas said his interviews confirm what experts say is a profound move of God in the predominantly Muslim nations of Mauritania, Western Sahara, Morocco, Algeria, Libya and Tunisia.

<Read the whole incredible article>            *Top

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-Iran: Revival Continues with Young Iranians Coming to Jesus

We have reported on the Revival taking place in Iran before. Unfortunately nearly every week I read where the Iranian authorities have arrested some Christians meeting illegally. Regardless, the Iranian Muslim leaders will not be able to shut them down since it is a sovereign work of the Lord. It is really good to hear that young Iranians are flocking to Jesus. Many of them have come through dreams and visions since no ‘official’ missionaries are allowed in that country.

What God is doing in Iran is similar to what happened in China after the government kicked out all of the missionaries and shut down most of the churches. The house church movement grew through indigenous leaders that God rose up through dreams, visions, and visitations. What is happening in Iran is also a work of God that can not be stopped in spite of the severe on-going persecution of Christians in that land.            *Top

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-False Prophets and Strange Fire?

Moses and the Burning Bush

                                 (Moses and the Burning Bush: Wikipedia)

From: Bethel Church, Redding

“Jesus didn’t warn us of prophets. He warned of false prophets.

He didn’t warn of signs and wonders. He warned of false signs and wonders.

Knowing the real helps us to recognize the false. For this reason those with little to no fire think all fire is strange fire.” – Bill Johnson

*Top

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-Doctor Shocked After Prayer Heals Woman’s Cancerous Tumor

Symbol of Christianity, white version.

          (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Here’s a report of a documented healing that has left the doctor rather shocked and without explanation. This story is from Israel and the woman is a Christian who was told that part of her leg had to be amputated because of a large cancerous tumor. She went home and prayed instead. Later the tumor was found to have completely disappeared with no trace.  Here’s the story from the Christian Post:

An Israeli woman and her doctor expressed shock and amazement when the woman’s massive malignant tumor, initially found in her leg, vanished almost completely after five months of no treatment, only intensive prayer.

<Read the whole article>

Response: This healing was actually presented on TV in Israel. When healings and miracles are referenced in the major media it helps to create an environment where revival hope and faith can expand into the dominant culture. 

The major revivals in our past were all witnessed and referenced by the major media of that day- mostly in newspaper articles. One of the more difficult factors to overcome in America today in order for a new awakening to actually get into the dominate culture is the fact the major mainstream media is overwhelmingly secular with very little regard for religion and particularly Christianity.

Healings are taking place all across the country right now but you would never know it except through blogs and the social media. A breakthrough into the major media like this story could bring the necessary hope, faith , and expectation that would take revival out of a few local churches into the cultural mainstream.             *Top

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-A Hopeful Scripture to Consider

Here some hopeful verses from Isaiah to consider for this year:

Isa 54:2-3, 10
2 "Enlarge the place of your tent,
stretch your tent curtains wide,
do not hold back;
lengthen your cords,
strengthen your stakes.
3 For you will spread out to the right and to the left;
10 Though the mountains be shaken
and the hills be removed,
yet my unfailing love for you will not be shaken
nor my covenant of peace be removed,"
says the LORD, who has compassion on you.
NIV

-Liberal Pundit Converts to Christianity After Seeing Jesus in a Dream

Have you seen this testimony? A liberal pundit, Kirsten Powers*, who could barely tolerate Christians had her life completely turned around beginning with a dream where Jesus appeared to her. Well worth reading on several different levels. Here are some quotes from the Christianity Today article:

Just seven years ago, if someone had told me that I’d be writing for Christianity Today magazine about how I came to believe in God, I would have laughed out loud. If there was one thing in which I was completely secure, it was that I would never adhere to any religion—especially to evangelical Christianity, which I held in particular contempt.  …

“To the extent that I encountered Christians, it was in the news cycle. And inevitably they were saying something about gay people or feminists. I didn’t feel I was missing much. So when I began dating a man who was into Jesus, I was not looking for God. In fact, the week before I met him, a friend had asked me if I had any deal breakers in dating. My response: "Just nobody who is religious."

A few months into our relationship, my boyfriend called to say he had something important to talk to me about. I remember exactly where I was sitting in my West Village apartment when he said, "Do you believe Jesus is your Savior?" My stomach sank. I started to panic. Oh no, was my first thought. He’s crazy.

<Read the whole article>

Response: This is a testimony that gives me real hope.

The last few years I have read accounts about how Muslims were secretly converting to Christianity after Jesus or angels appear to them in dreams and visions. This is how revival was initiated in Iran which is a country where one cannot openly talk to people about Jesus.

Today in America so many have become alienated from Christianity particularly among the intelligentsia and media that revival would seem to be a real uphill battle. But as bad as it is here Iran is far worse of an environment for revival and yet it is happening there. After all is said and done it is a sovereign work of God regardless of all of the circumstances.

*Kirsten Powers is a contributor to USA Today, a columnist for Newsweek/The Daily Beast, and a commentator at Fox News.

HT: The Blaze               *Top

-Happy Thanksgiving 2013

"The First Thanksgiving at Plymouth"...

              ("The First Thanksgiving at Plymouth": Wikipedia)

Happy Thanksgiving 2013 to you and yours. Our traditional Thanksgiving message follows:

Thanksgiving is a uniquely American celebration that began nearly four centuries ago with a deeply religious people, the Pilgrims, giving thanks to God for preserving them though a very hard year and bringing them their first bountiful harvest which they gratefully shared with their indigenous neighbors.

It was our first President George Washington who proclaimed that our first official national day of public thanksgiving should be dedicated by observing and:

“…by acknowledging with grateful hearts the many and signal favors of Almighty God.

In recent years the ‘politically correct’/secular crowd has rewritten the history of the first Thanksgiving placing an emphasis upon the hand that the indigenous American Indians played in helping the original Pilgrim community to survive. In the process they have redirected the emphasis on thanks towards neighbors and away from the providence of Almighty God.

While it is always good to be thankful for others who have enriched our own lives and certainly that has a good part to play in the celebration. Nevertheless the major emphasis of Thanksgiving should always be upon God as it was on that very first occasion.

For me and my family, we will be praising and thanking the Lord God Almighty for the bounties and the providence that he has bestowed upon us this year in the name of his Son Jesus Christ. May Our Heavenly Father bless your family today and continue to bless all of us and this nation in the year to come.           *Top

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-The Importance of Giving Thanks

Give thanks in all circumstances; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you.” -1 Thessalonians 5:18 (ESV)

And let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts, to which indeed you were called in one body. And be thankful. 16 Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly, teaching and admonishing one another in all wisdom, singing psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, with thankfulness in your hearts to God. 17 And whatever you do, in word or deed, do everything in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him.  -Colossians 3:15-20 (ESV)

20 giving thanks always and for everything to God the Father in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, –Ephesians 5:20 (ESV)

With Thanksgiving coming this week in America I believe this is a good time to remember just how important giving thanks to God really is in the life of believers and the church. There are literally hundreds of verses in the Bible teaching us to live our lives in thankfulness to God no matter what and no matter what we are doing.

These are still hard times for many in the USA regardless of all the propaganda to the contrary. Many Christians are out of work or working for far less than ever before. I believe that one of the ways to help believers in America is to cultivate an environment of the thankfulness in our churches. Also it is important that there is an opportunity given in our churches to pray for one another. Especially for those with particular needs- for healing, jobs, or business. And finally a time to hear testimonies of those who have been blessed and received answers to their prayers.

We had our official Thanksgiving service Sunday at VCC Laguna Niguel and there were very few unused seats available since we had a combined service rather than the usual two. This has been an exceptional year at VCC that saw more healings and more people come to Christ than all of the previous 15 years combined. Particularly in the Mercy food warehouse ministry where there were 788 folks that have come to Christ since last March and nearly 600 healings some of which were rather incredible. We don’t have revival yet at the church but it is approaching it in the food ministry. For sure it is a time to be thankful.

Pastor Mike asked for raised hands of those who had gotten new jobs or received promotions after prayer this year and hands were up all over the auditorium. Then he asked for testimonies from those who had received healing and over thirty lined up in the front and testified to the edification of everyone there.

While I was sitting in the service drinking in all of the testimonies of blessings and thankfulness coming from the congregation a word came to me unexpected since I really wasn’t thinking about revival at the time:

Some revivals were cut short for the lack of thankfulness.

After that I started thinking about all of the revivals and renewals that I knew about or had experienced. They always seem to dissipate when the personalities or the gifts themselves become the objects of attention rather than the Lord and along with it forgetfulness to be truly thankful to God through it all.

Point is, I believe that our churches need to become places of hope, faith, and thankfulness in order to provide an environment where God can continually bless us as never before. Especially thankfulness.             *Top

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-You Will be Mighty in the Land

Let your light shine bright so that others can...

                    (Photo credit: symphony of love)

For I know the plans I have for you," declares the LORD, "plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.  Then you will call upon me and come and pray to me, and I will listen to you.  You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart. -Jer 29:11-14  (NIV)

His children will be mighty in the land;
the generation of the upright will be blessed.  …
Even in darkness light dawns for the upright,
for the gracious and compassionate and righteous man.
-Ps 112:2-4  (NIV)

‘Not by might nor by power, but by my Spirit,’ says the LORD Almighty.  -Zech 4:6  (NIV)

For Young Christians (Also for parents, grandparents, pastors and youth leaders):

There is popular message being disseminated to the youth in America today that you will not have a future as great as your parents but must be prepared to settle for less. This thought comes from the pit of hell and should be cast off since it is the intention of the enemy.

But your Father in Heaven has plans for you to proper you and give you hope and a supernatural destiny in the future.  It is the intention of the Lord that you become even closer to Him than your parents and miracles and the ‘supernatural’ become a natural part of your daily life. In the past, work and occupations were considered as separate from ones spiritual life and ministry but no more. They are to be lived as one and the same.

You will not be limited by the might of the US economy nor by the power of the US military but through the Spirit you will receive vision, direction, blessing and an open door for the future. You are destined to be mighty in the land and your light will shine forth in the darkness.               *Top

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