On Wings Of Eagles

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Friday, July 31, 2015

The Battle is the Lord's

Exodus 14:14 (ESV)
The Lord will fight for you, and you have only to be silent.

Pedro Bernardo traveled up and down the Amazon River by canoe selling Christian books to the villagers he passed. At night he'd find a quiet nook by a protected bank, tie his boat to a tree limb, and drift to sleep amid the muffled sounds of the jungle.

Early one morning he discovered that he'd tied his canoe to a very dangerous tree. No, the limbs and leaves weren't the problem. It was what lived in the tree that almost cost him his life.

The sting of the fire ant can burn like a flame. If enough of the large creatures sting you, you die. As Pedro slumbered under that particular tree that night, an army of fire ants began marching down the rope, heading straight for the weary literature evangelist.

At that moment a gentle breeze drifted across the waters, pushing the free end of the canoe around until it came to rest against the limb of another tree. Unknown to the slumbering Christian, this tree contained a colony of black ants-deadly enemies of the fire ants. A new army swarmed down the limb, boarded the canoe, and met the fire ants just a couple feet from Pedro's head.

All night long a fierce, silent war raged, with casualties on both sides. At dawn, when Pedro awakened, he rolled over to discover that his canoe had been a battleground and was littered with dead and dying fire ants. Their black cousins had gained the upper hand and driven the red army out of the canoe, back up the rope, and into their own tree.

From every enemy, God provides a Deliverer.

Dear Lord, thank You for always being there to protect us. Help us not take that for granted. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.

Thursday, July 30, 2015

Prayer Works!

2 Chronicles 7:14 (ESV)
If my people who are called by my name humble themselves, and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven and will forgive their sin and heal their land.

Lieutenant Carey Cash, chaplain to the First Battalion, 5th Marine regiment, was part of the first ground force to enter Iraq and says there is no doubt that God was with them. (He also served in Kuwait.) During what is conceded to be the worst day of fighting for U.S. Marines, the first battalion, the most highly decorated Marines in U.S. history, suffered just one casualty. Something Cash calls an absolute miracle in a recent interview with Pat Robertson:

CASH: On April 10th, 2003, our battalion was given orders to seize the presidential palace on the Tigris River. And we went into the center of that city, not realizing that about a thousand Fedayeen were waiting for us. And at four in the morning, in the dark, they literally unleashed all their fury. It became essentially a nine-hour ambush, from urban fighting, close quarters. The results of which should have yielded untold casualties and many, many Marines dead. Just because of the sheer volume of fire, we suspected anywhere from 1,000 to 1,500 rocket-propelled grenades were shot at the lead elements of our convoy. When I got to the palace the next day and began to talk to the Marines, and go and visit them - and we did lose one man, a 22-year veteran - what I saw was not a battalion licking its wounds and overwhelmed with the fight they had just endured. But literally it looked like I'd come upon a group of men who had walked through the Red Sea. Over and over the stories kept coming out to me.' Chaplain, let me tell you what God did for me; Chaplain, the angels that we have been talking about for weeks, preceding this war, shielded me and protected me.' It was amazing.

Did they see the angels or did they just know they were there?

CASH: I didn't talk to any Marines who said they saw an angel. But what they did share was that rocket-propelled grenades would come at them, and literally curve in mid-air and go around them. Untold Marines shared with me that rockets would come and literally dive down as if batted by some unseen hand. We had one rocket go through a Humvee passenger-side window, and explode in the compartment. Without a doubt, it should have killed every man in that vehicle. And yet when the explosion came through, it blew out the front of the windshield, and so it exploded out instead of in, and not a single man was injured. And over and over, the accounts of that day were so tremendous, that I realized I had stumbled upon something amazing.

Did your people pray? I've heard of a unit in World War II that recited the 91st Psalm, over and over again. Was there special prayer, special confession of God's presence?

CASH: Absolutely, yes. Psalm 91, which is known as the Soldier's Psalm, became very instrumental in the days leading up to that war, even during the war. Joshua 1:9, "Have I not commanded you to be strong and courageous? Be not afraid. Be not dismayed, for I will be with you wherever you go." This became, literally, God's word to us, to remember that we are not going through this alone.

It is almost a cliché - there are no atheists in foxholes - what is the faith of those guys? When you go in a battle like that, do they want to know God?

CASH: It is interesting, when I began visiting the men, the last few hours before we crossed the line of departure. They all had their rifles, they had their ammunition, they had all their gear, they had all their training, but in the last moments what all of us needed was something that far transcended anything that training could provide. When I went and visited them, and their eyes met with mine, it was as if we all knew why I was there. We needed to call on God. We were joining a host of warriors, for millennium before battles, who have called out upon the only One who could provide for them and protect them.

Amazing stories. Were there others? You mentioned going into Baghdad. Were there other examples of the protection of God that you saw?

CASH: Absolutely. When we crossed in the line of departure, we immediately met a section of Iraqi tanks that we had not suspected would be there. In fact, intelligence had not confirmed or reported their presence. We came across the border, it was in the dark, their turrets were leveled, we were exposed, we were at a point of what is called critical vulnerability---and their main guns never fired on us.The guns were fully manned by Iraqi soldiers and the company commander told me, after the fight, about that incident. He said, 'Chaplain, if their main guns had fired, all it would have taken is one round to hit one of our armored personnel carriers and 20-30 marines would have been dead in an instant.' And I remembered back to the countless letters I had received from churches across the nations, saying we are praying specifically that when you cross that border, God will restrain and confuse the enemy. And the fact that those tanks didn't fire and that 3,000 enemy soldiers s! Urrendered en masse and in concert, tells me that God answered those prayers of the people back here in the United States.

This again is probably redundant, but what is the morale of those troops? It must be tremendous.

CASH: The morale is good. The training is good, their leadership is determined, but if I could say, the thing I am most concerned about is the morale of our people back here and in the churches. I think that the churches prayed for our men during the major hostilities. But we have to remember that now, more than ever, we need to pray for those men. We need to send them letters. It was like life, getting letters on the front line from churches saying we are praying for you. We are praying this psalm for you, we are remembering you daily in our Bible studies. Churches and Christians all across our country need to remember that this war is still ongoing, and they need to send letter and care packages. We need to adopt battalions, like we did during the war, and lift these men up daily to God."

As a chaplain, Lieutenant Cash does not carry even a defensive weapon, but he strongly believes Romans, Chapter 13, teaches that "government does not bear the sword in vain," meaning there is a place for the use of aggressive force if it is to protect the innocent, to right a wrong. He also says that despite the difficulties of being in Iraq, he eventually has realized that "God had not just called us there to protect the Iraqi people and to protect our borders from weapons of mass destruction, but He had brought these men there in order to reveal Himself to them for the first time."

A devoted husband and father of five children under nine years old, Lieutenant Cash is a graduate of Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary in Fort Worth, Texas, wrote a book about his experiences.  
Prayer works!

Dear Lord, thank You that we can come to You in prayer. We thank You that You listen and are there to take care of us and our concerns. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.  

Wednesday, July 29, 2015

The Invisible Fence

Galatians 5:13 (ESV)
For you were called to freedom, brothers. Only do not use your freedom as an opportunity for the flesh, but through love serve one another.

When we lived in Michigan we had an interesting fence: it was invisible!

What good would such a fence do?

We used to think that it was the best thing invented for our dog. A wire, hidden in the ground, carried a signal transmitted to a small electrical device attached to the collar of our dogs. If our dog came near the invisible fence, it would hear a warning beep. If it continued on its trajectory, it would be zapped by a small electrical pulse.

I'm sure glad I don't have to wear one of those!

But it's true that if the dog stays within the boundaries of their designated kingdom, they remain not only free, but also "zap free"! Utter freedom within the margins!

But one of our dog's was always looking to the other side of the invisible fence. To him the grass was greener and where she was sure she would find freedom. He was sure that's where he belonged.

Then one day he started to experiment with her invisible fence and soon discovered that if he ran fast enough and lowered his head just right, the electrical discharge was brief at best, and certainly nothing to worry about. One day he decided to visit the other side of the fence. Gone was the protection he had by the invisible fence. He didn't realized that the invisible fence was there so he could be truly free, protecting him for anything that would potentially steal away that freedom.

Are we any better?

God has given a fence to us as well, and just like the dog's invisible fence, it is also there for our benefit and protection. It is called God`s Law. It is found in the Bible and its Author will gladly lead anyone to a full understanding of it. It isn't there to hinder us, it's there so that we can truly enjoy utter freedom in Christ.

The freedom proclaimed by the world is not freedom at all. How can we call addictions freedom? It messes us up inside and makes us feel horrible most of the time! The only true freedom is the one Jesus provides, one destined to help us know and enjoy our Lord and Saviour, and one where we can discover a passion for others as well!

It sure looks tempting the other side of the fence. But remember, looks can be so deceiving!

Dear Lord, thank You for the fence that You put around us for our protection. Help us not try and find ways to get though the fence. In Jesus’ Name. Amen

Tuesday, July 28, 2015

God cannot be outdone in generosity

Psalm 5:11-12 (ESV)
11 But let all who take refuge in you rejoice;
    let them ever sing for joy,
and spread your protection over them,
    that those who love your name may exult in you.
12 For you bless the righteous, O Lord;
    you cover him with favor as with a shield.

After her mother developed dementia, Jean Marie Ezman of Carbondale, Pennsylvania, had just one favor to ask of God, that Jean be permitted to care for Mom in her own home until she died. Jean had taken over this obligation in October 2002, and been faithful for three years. But in April, 2005, she almost became a patient herself.

"One morning I was pushing the large garbage can down our front steps for the pickup," Jean says. "Our house was located up behind a wall and there were eighteen cement steps to get to the sidewalk." Jean would usually tilt the container on its two back wheels to start down the steps, just like pushing a baby stroller. She would also hold onto the railing.

But on this morning, the garbage can's wheels got stuck on the third step from the top. Jean felt the can tip forward and, letting go of the railing, she pushed the can with both hands. The container fell forward, crashing down the steps. But since she was off-balance, Jean also flew down the steps. "My new glasses flew off," she remembers, "and I twisted once in the air before hitting my face on the cement." Her shoulder, knees and shins all came in contact with the steps too.

"It's amazing how many thoughts can flow through the brain in a couple of seconds," Jean says. "As I was falling, I thought---how could I be so stupid to let go of the rail, and how was I supposed to take care of my mother if I broke my bones?"

Jean finally landed. She stayed still for a moment, fearing the worst, and then gradually began to wiggle her fingers and toes. Gingerly, she took inventory, expecting pain in many places. But. She didn't feel anything wrong. Gripping the railing, she slowly got to her feet. There didn't seem to be any broken bones, no sprains or bumps. "I put my hand up to my face, but there was no blood," Jean says in wonder. "My knees were a little scraped but that was all." Then Jean remembered something. Every time her body had made contact with the cement, it was as if something soft but invisible was cushioning her. Amazed, Jean realized that she was not hurt at all. Only her glasses were missing.

But no. She squinted. There they were, neatly folded on the sidewalk, both lenses intact.

Jean thought about the event for a long time. Why was she not seriously injured? "The only conclusion I can come to is that God sent angels to keep me from harm, so I could continue to take care of my Mom," Jean says. And as it turned out, that prayer was answered, for Jean's mother died peacefully at home in 2006.

God cannot be outdone in generosity, Jean knows. What we give to Him, He returns a thousandfold.

Are you trusting everything to God?

Dear Lord, thank You that we can put our trust in You. We thank You for the many ways You protect us. In Jesus’ Name, Amen. 

Monday, July 27, 2015

Make the most of what God has given to you.

Deuteronomy 31:6 (ESV)
Be strong and courageous. Do not fear or be in dread of them, for it is the Lord your God who goes with you. He will not leave you or forsake you.

When Thomas Stevens was 22, he had a serious accident. He fell toward a window, and put his arms out to break the fall. Instead, his left arm went through the glass and he severed most of its tendons and arteries. His then-girlfriend, Sarah, had the presence of mind to make a tourniquet out of her blouse, tie it around his arm and call an ambulance. "Oddly," Thomas says, "I was somehow calm during all of this. Even though I heard the EMT telling Sarah that he didn't think I would make it to the hospital, I still felt well taken care of."

Once at the hospital Thomas kissed Sarah ("I did think I might not make it out of the hospital") and was rushed into Emergency surgery. He had lost so much blood that he could not have anesthesia so he was in a unique position of watching everything that went on. It was apparent that the operating team was working feverishly to reconnect all the arteries and tendons. Something else also held Tom's attention. "During the surgery, a rather small nurse with dark brown, almost black hair and green eyes held my right hand and just kind of stood beside me," he says. Apparently, this was the nurse's only job, that, and offering encouragement to Thomas. "She told me on multiple occasions that I had to fight because there was so much left for me to do," he recalls.

Once in recovery, Tom's family gathered, along with the physician who had performed the surgery. He asked to speak to Tom alone for a moment, so everyone else left the room. "Tom, you lost so much blood that you should have died," the doctor began. "You've been given a second chance at life now, and you need to make the most of it." Tom asked for details of the surgery, and what kind of rehabilitation he would need to regain the use of his hand. The doctor looked at Tom sadly. "Son, you're never going to regain any feeling in that hand---and you're going to need extensive therapy to even be able to use it."

Tom was shocked. He was so young, and this was a bitter blow. Almost immediately, he thought of the dark-haired nurse who'd held his hand during surgery and spoken so encouragingly to him. "Could I see her?" He asked the doctor.

The physician looked puzzled. "I don't know who you're talking about" he said to Tom.

"Small and dark-haired. She held my hand." Tom tried to explain, but the doctor was shaking his head.

"There wasn't any nurse in the room at all. Just me and the other surgeon."

Then Tom understood. The nurse had been right. There were many more things he had to do with his life, and God would give him the grace to do it all.

Today, Thomas has not only completely regained the use of his hand, but is married and the father of three small children. He has also been serving for the past six years in the Air Force, with no complications to his hand. "I do have a scar," he says. "It is about 8 by 6 inches, and is in the form of a cross on the bottom of my left forearm." It's a daily reminder that God did give Thomas a second chance---and he plans to make the most of it.

Are you making the most of the life that God has given to you?

Dear Lord, thank You for all that You do to protect us. Help us to do all that we can to make the most of what You have given to us. In Jesus Name, Amen.

Sunday, July 26, 2015

A fan and God's voice

1 Kings 19:12 (ESV)
And after the earthquake a fire, but the Lord was not in the fire. And after the fire the sound of a low whisper.

Frank SanGregory of Tiffin, Ohio, was getting ready for work. He was on the afternoon shift so although his daughter Theresa and his almost-two-year-old grandson, Josh, were finishing lunch downstairs in the kitchen with Grandma, Frank had gone upstairs to shave. There was a large window at the top of the staircase, and right in front of it, Frank kept a large exhaust fan to circulate the air on hot days. But today was not hot so the fan was not running. Frank barely noticed it as he passed it, went into the bathroom and closed the door. He could still hear the laughter coming from downstairs. He adored his grandchildren, and hated to say goodbye to little Josh. But they lived nearby, so more fun would certainly be in store.

Frank started his routine. And then, “I don’t know why,” Frank says, “but a few minutes after I had closed the bathroom door, I felt as if I should open it and look out into the hallway.” He had no reason to do so, and he wasn’t finished shaving yet. “And I never opened the bathroom door before I was finished---except in very hot weather, perhaps. But today wasn’t hot. Neither did I hear anything that would cause me to open the door. There was no reason in my mind. I just decided that it was something that I should do. And so, I opened it just a slit.”

Toddler Joshua had followed Frank up to the second floor! The two-year-old stood, on the next to last step, reaching out to take hold of the heavy fan, to pull himself up to the top of the stairs.

Time seemed to stand still---and then as Joshua grabbed the fan to brace himself, it started to tip towards him. Frank flung himself out the door, just in time to grab the tipping fan with his left arm. At the same instant, he was able to wrap his right arm around Joshua to keep him and the fan from rolling down the stairs. “Had I been even a second later, I shudder to think what could have happened,” Frank says. “The fan wasn’t running but it was very heavy, and Joshua would have no doubt been crippled or perhaps even killed.”

Frank has always believed that it was God urging him to peek out that bathroom door. God intervened and saved the family from a terrible tragedy.

Are you listening to the small still voice of God when He prompts you to do something?

Dear Lord, thanks for Your prompting voice. We pray that our ears would be open and that we would listen and do what You say. In Jesus’ Name. Amen.

Saturday, July 25, 2015

Does the world see God's light shining through you?

Matthew 5:16 (ESV)
In the same way, let your light shine before others, so that they may see your good works and give glory to your Father who is in heaven.

"Why go out tonight? There won't be a soul there."

As the minister watched the rain lash against the window, the voice that spoke inside him sounded reasonable enough. It was one of the stormiest nights of the winter. But somehow he felt he must conduct that evening service.

So he put on his raincoat, took his lantern, and stepped out into the blackness. The water almost blinded him as he plunged into the teeth of the gale. On and up he plodded until he came to his church, which stood on a high hill along the Scottish coast. When he had opened the door, he set the lantern on a window sill, and then sat down to wait for his congregation--a congregation that never came.

At last, seeing he would be quite alone, he sang a hymn and knelt and prayed. Then, his duty performed, he locked the church and went down the hill. Had it all been a waste of time? The pastor wondered.

But the next morning he heard a different story. The night before, when the storm was at its worst, a fishing vessel had been trying to make the harbor. The skipper was floundering around in the blackness until he saw the small light in the old church. Without that lantern the ship would have surely been carried onto the rocks. But thanks to those steady beams, the pilot had brought his boat safely to port. It was a lesson to the minister. After that, he knew that any light he might throw into this world's darkness would never be entirely lost.

Are you letting your light shine for God today?

Dear Lord, we pray today that we would let Your light shine though us no matter the circumstance. In Jesus’ Name, Amen. 

Friday, July 24, 2015

Because He cares for you

1 Peter 5:7 (ESV)
Casting all your anxieties on him, because he cares for you.

It was time for lunch, and Nicolette M. fixed herself and her preschool son a hot lunch, and settled down with him to watch cartoons on television, their daily ritual. Suddenly Nicolette started to choke. A piece of meat had apparently gotten caught in her throat. She tried to dislodge it, but nothing would work. Gasping, Nicolette realized that she was in a dangerous situation.

"Honey, call 911 right now!" She cried, thankful that she had trained her little boy in emergency procedures. Both of them tried to tell the operator what was wrong, but Nicolette kept choking. She was having trouble catching her breath now, and starting to feel panicky and disoriented. What if she collapsed--or even choked to death--right here in front of her son? He was becoming agitated too, especially since the operator couldn't make out what he was saying. "My mommy, my mommy!" He kept crying.

Suddenly Nicolette heard a knock at the front door. Half-crawling now, she flung it open, expecting to see a rescue squad. Instead, an elderly man was standing on her porch, holding a notebook. "Good afternoon," he began. "I work for the city."

No. Her Iowa town was small, but she had never seen this gentleman before. Yet, vulnerable as she was, Nicolette felt no fear when the stranger, sizing up the situation, strode into her living room. "I think I can help you," he said. Quickly, he gave Nicolette's address to the telephone operator, hung up the phone, then dragged Nicolette to her feet, went behind her and grasped her in the Heimlich maneuver. Immediately she felt the piece of meat move. It was still stuck in her throat, but although she continued to cough, she could breathe freely once again. She took deep gasps of air. "Thank God," she whispered to the stranger. "Thank God you came when you did."

Suddenly sirens heralded that an ambulance was coming up in front of the house. Two attendants raced through the open front door. One saw the man, still standing near Nicolette. "You a relative?" He asked, while the other quickly assessed Nicolette's condition.

"No," the man answered calmly. "I work for the city."

"We're going to take you to the hospital," the paramedic told Nicolette. "That piece of meat needs to be removed by a doctor."

It was all happening so fast... Everyone piled out the front door, but as Nicolette turned around, her rescuer seemed to have disappeared. As the ambulance pulled away, she again tried to see out the window, but there was no figure standing in front of her house, no one watching her as she sped toward help.

Later, after things calmed down and Nicolette left the hospital, she talked to the ambulance squad. Did they know where she could find the man? But they were puzzled too. "Funny thing," one mused. "He said he worked for the city... well, we do too, but we've never seen him on any job or at any meeting." Nicolette kept asking, but in her little town--where everyone knows everyone else--not one person could identify a man of that description working for the city, or for anyone else. Nor did Nicolette discover what a city worker would have been doing in her neighborhood that day.

"He came unexpectedly, and went the same way," Nicolette says today. "But he left a comforting glow that I still have difficulty describing." She doesn't try. She just gives thanks to God for the angel that watches over her-and her neighbors.

Dear Lord, thank You for the different ways You take care of us. Help us always be thankful.  In Jesus’ Name, Amen.

Thursday, July 23, 2015

Are you looking for God's hand print?

Isaiah 46:10-11 (ESV)
10 declaring the end from the beginning
    and from ancient times things not yet done,
saying, ‘My counsel shall stand,
    and I will accomplish all my purpose,’
11 calling a bird of prey from the east,
    the man of my counsel from a far country.
I have spoken, and I will bring it to pass;
    I have purposed, and I will do it.

Marie Vincze was driving on a lonely ten-mile stretch of red clay road to drop off her teenage daughter at a wilderness camp. It was hard enough to keep the car on the slippery mud and not end up in a ditch, but her three young boys were bouncing around in the back seat, and the noise was deafening. “Pray,” she heard the word in her heart just as the car slid off the road and came to a stop, its wheels stuck in the clay.

“Oh, no!” Marie opened her door and realized that the mud was almost up to the floorboard. There was no way they were going to get out of here without help.

“I could have panicked, but I decided to have faith instead,” Marie says. She turned to the three boys, now completely silent, and said, “Sing your Sunday School songs---right now!---and don’t stop until I tell you to, no matter what!” Beside her, her daughter rolled her eyes. This girl believed in nothing at the moment, unless she could see and hear it. But right now, Marie had to pray.

“God,” she began, “please remember Psalm 91 and let the angels bear us up. If I ever needed help, it’s now!” The boys continue to sing, and Marie felt peace spreading over all of them, warming their souls. Very slowly the back of her small car lifted. Marie did not ask questions---she gassed the car and somehow drove out of the ditch. The boys cheered.

“Boys, look back and see what an angel looks like!” Marie cried in delight.

“Momma, we can’t see anything,” the oldest told her.

“Well, it’s enough that he is here for us,” Marie pointed out.

“Oh, Momma…” her skeptical daughter started, but Marie interrupted.

“Don’t say anything negative. Just sit there and observe.”

The boys continued to sing, as they traveled on. Marie was still praying. “Lord, I hate to bother you, but there’s a cement road coming up. It goes over a creek, and the embankment is red clay. It drops off on each side, and I’m a little worried….” Fear gripped her for a moment as they approached the trouble spot. “Sing louder, boys!” she told them.

Taking a deep breath, Marie sped down the crossing, gunned the engine, shot up the embankment…and lost control of the car. “We started to tip over the embankment,” she says, “and then I heard a gentle tap on the car, and it moved into the center of the road,” Marie says. “It veered to another drop on the opposite side, and again it was tapped, and it straightened up.”

Again the boys cheered, and Marie gave thanks as she made it across. She wondered how her non believing daughter was handling this wonderful occurrence, but there would be time to talk about it all later.

In just a few minutes, the car pulled safely into the camp parking lot, and Marie sighed with relief and opened her door. The mud, she noticed, had seeped all the way inside to her floorboards. Well, mud was easily removed. She got out, went around to the trunk and stopped in astonishment, as the children gathered around her. “Mom, look!” one of the boys pointed in awe. There on the back of the muddy car window was a large man’s hand print.

“God does indeed give us a hand in our daily lives, are you looking for His hand print?

Dear Lord, thank You that You are there for us in all situations. Help our eyes be open so that we can see Your hand print. In Jesus’ Name, Amen. 

Wednesday, July 22, 2015

Corrie Ten Boom sees God's protection

Acts 12:7 (ESV)
And behold, an angel of the Lord stood next to him, and a light shone in the cell. He struck Peter on the side and woke him, saying, “Get up quickly.” And the chains fell off his hands.

Corrie ten Boom was born in 1892 in Haarlem, Holland. During World War II, she and her family helped Jews escape the persecution of the Nazis by allowing their home to be a safe haven. In February 1944, Corrie and her family were arrested and sent to Ravensbruck Concentration Camp. Corrie was the only member of her family to survive.

Following the war, Corrie's faith in Christ remained strong. She chronicled her life story in the book "The Hiding Place."

During the Cold War, Corrie once helped smuggle bibles into Communist Eastern Europe. The border guard was checking everyone's bag, and she knew her load of bibles would be discovered. She quickly prayed: "Lord, you have said that you would watch over your Word. Now, please watch over your Word that I am smuggling."

Suddenly as she looked at her suitcase, it seemed to glow with light. No one else saw it, but to Corrie it was unmistakable.

When her turn came at customs, the guard, who had so vigilantly opened and inspected every other piece of luggage, glanced at her bag, shrugged and waved her through.

Corrie believed it was an angel that had helped her deliver God's Word behind the Iron Curtain.

The Lord still uses His angels to minister to us in times of need.

Dear Lord, thank You that in times of need You are there watching over us. Help our faith be strong. In Jesus’ Name. Amen.

Tuesday, July 21, 2015

God is watching over you.

Job 10:12  (ESV)
 You have granted me life and steadfast love,
    and your care has preserved my spirit.

The Reverend John Stuart Holden, rector of St. Paul's Church, Portman Square, London, was booked on the Titanic to sail from Southampton of 10 April 1912. He was to have occupied cabin D-11, one of the first class cabins. But on 9 April, Mrs. Holden became ill and Rev. Holden cancelled his trip to nurse her. He missed out on the maiden voyage of the most luxurious ocean liner that have ever been built. But four days later more than 1,500 passengers and crew died when the ship sank after hitting an iceberg in the North Atlantic. Reverend Holden was the only first class passenger to have cancelled his voyage.

After the ship sank in April 1912, he mounted the ticket he had purchased for the Titanic in a cardboard frame on which he wrote: "Who redeemeth thy life from destruction."

The ticket carried the warning: "The company's liability for baggage is strictly limited but passengers can protect themselves by insurance."

The ticket hung in the Reverend's study until his death and is now on display at the Merseyside Maritime Museum, in Liverpool.

The Lord watches over us and shows us all types of kindness.

Dear Lord, thank You for watching over us and showing your kindness to us.  Help us to keep our trust in You. In Jesus’ Name, Amen. 

Monday, July 20, 2015

Jesus is our Hedge of protection.

Job 1:10-11 (ESV)
10 Have you not put a hedge around him and his house and all that he has, on every side? You have blessed the work of his hands, and his possessions have increased in the land. 11 But stretch out your hand and touch all that he has, and he will curse you to your face.”

On the island Skidaway in Savannah,Ga. There is  a small population of deer leisurely roaming the neighborhood, eating anything they choose along the way . Some homeowners have protected their favorite shrubs and flowers with wire or electric fencing which prevent the deer from stripping the plant.

The deer In their eating spree would rob the roses of their beauty, sap the life out of them, and basically just consume them.

Satan would like to do that to us Christian. He would enjoy stealing God’s beauty from our lives - the splendor of a spirit of giving, loving and serving. He would like to devour our lives by filling us with a spirit of greed, lust or fear. However, God puts a hedge of protection( Job 1:10) around His children, much as the homeowners protected their roses from the onslaught of the deer. He also has taught us how to dress ourselves with His armor; but mostly, He has allowed Jesus to shed His precious blood to cover us.

God has promised in His Word that we will not fight Satan alone. Our heavenly father is our banner of protection.

Dear Lord, thank You for being the hedge of protection around us. Help us not go outside the hedge where Satan can destroy us and our witness for You. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.

Sunday, July 19, 2015

A tornado testimony of God's power

Isaiah 41:10 (ESV)
Fear not, for I am with you;
    be not dismayed, for I am your God;
I will strengthen you, I will help you,
    I will uphold you with my righteous right hand.

Gail Mummert, a member of a church in Colorado Springs, shared this remarkable testimony of protection during a kairos moment in Lancaster, Texas:

As we were driving home in threatening weather, my husband, Gene, turned on the radio for a local report. Funnel clouds had indeed been spotted nearby. After arriving home, things grew strangely calm.

In a short while, the wind started to blow fiercely. Trees were bent over and the very walls of the house began to flutter. Windows rattled and hail beat on the car port.

"Get into the hall and close the doors," my husband shouted. "Get pillows, blankets and a flashlight." "Nana, I'm scared," cried our five-year-old grandson, William.

"Jesus will take care of us. Don't be afraid," I told him. Suddenly sirens began to go off in our small town. The walls moved as though they weren't anchored to anything. "If we're not in a tornado, we're close," shouted Gene as he ran into the hall.

"Link arms and sit on the floor," I said.

"I love you," Gene said to us as he surrounded us with blankets and pillows, covered us with his body and enveloped us with his arms.

A mighty rushing wind was all around us and sucked us together into a ball. "Pray! Keep praying," he said.

"God Almighty, help us!" We screamed.


Windows shattered, glass flew everywhere. Another explosion. The walls caved in. Debris shot everywhere like arrows toward their target.

"Jesus, help us! You are our Savior! You are our King!" My voice cried. I looked up-the roof was falling on us. A ladder crashed down on my husband's back.

"Now start praising Him," Gene shouted through the wind. The next blast was the worst. There was nothing we could do. Only He could help us. Everything was out of control, but we knew the sovereignty of God. We knew we were at the point of death but we shouted, "Thank you, Jesus! Thank you, Lord!"

Suddenly, peace filled me like a flood. A sweet voice filled my heart, "I've heard your cry for help. I've bent the heavens for you. No matter what happens around you, I'm here protecting you." Tears flooded my face and I knew Jesus was protecting us. It seemed His arms had surrounded us. I knew we would be safe.

The tornado was over. The rain beat down on us with a force I had never felt before. We were safe. "Mama, I see the sky," little William said.

"William, that's because the roof is gone. We probably won't have any walls, either," Gene informed him. "I'm so thankful we're okay," our daughter Wendy cried. "Jesus protected us, didn't He?" Though buried under tons of debris, our hair covered with insulation and glass, we were okay. Just a few minor injuries.

Talk about walls of protection! Several people were killed and many injured in that devastating tornado, but the everlasting arms of the Lord protected the Mummert family. Gail was privileged to share her entire story with The Dallas Morning News. The newspaper even printed her testimony about the protection of the Lord.

Dear Lord, thank You for protecting us is all things. Help our faith be strong to completely trust in You and when You do protect us help us share that with the world so they too can see Your mighty works. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.

Saturday, July 18, 2015

God's protectors

Hebrews 12:22-24  (ESV)
22 But you have come to Mount Zion and to the city of the living God, the heavenly Jerusalem, and to innumerable angels in festal gathering, 23 and to the assembly of the firstborn who are enrolled in heaven, and to God, the judge of all, and to the spirits of the righteous made perfect, 24 and to Jesus, the mediator of a new covenant, and to the sprinkled blood that speaks a better word than the blood of Abel.

Marie Monsen was a Norwegian missionary in China during the 1920s. At that time lawlessness was rampant in China, and the Chinese army had not been paid for a long time. One evening, the soldiers began looting in the city. Marie and the Chinese Christians with her heard shooting and shouting all night, but no soldier came to bang on the door of their mission. All during night the mission became a sanctuary for the fearful neighbors. The following morning, many of the other neighbors came to ask who their "protectors" were. At first Marie was not sure what they meant, until she heard the same account from so many that she knew it was true. They all separately said they had seen three tall foreign soldiers standing on the high roof of their Gospel Hall, one at each end and one in the middle. A fourth protector was sitting on the porch over the main gate, keeping watch in every direction. They were there all night, and all the accounts said they "shone." Neither Marie nor any of her Christian friends had seen them. Only the nonbelievers living nearby had seen these angel protectors, to convince them that God takes care of all who trust in Him.

There are millions of angels doing Christ's work here on earth. We are to take comfort that as we follow the Lord, He is faithful in protecting us.

Dear Lord, thank You that no matter what the spiritual battle, trouble or calamity we find ourselves, You have millions of angels ready to protect us. Help us to completely trust in You. In Jesus’ Name. Amen. 

Friday, July 17, 2015

The Mysteries of God

Job 11:7 (NIV)
Can you fathom the mysteries of God?
    Can you probe the limits of the Almighty?

Hugh didn’t believe in God – until he had a phone call from Him.

He was enjoying a good night’s sleep when the phone rang downstairs. He looked at his clock and swore. Ten past three! It could only be bad news at that time. In his panic Hugh didn’t get his slippers on properly and reaching the top of the stairs he took a tumble and fell all the way to the bottom.

He twisted his back, bruised his cheek and had the breath knocked out of him. Just to add insult to injury, as he pulled himself up and reached for the phone – it stopped ringing.

Hugh sat on the bottom step, checking his injuries and cursing whatever prankster had caused all this mayhem.

Then his nose twitched.

He followed the smell to the cupboard under the stairs. As he opened the door the acrid stench of melting insulation assaulted his nostrils. Quick as a flash Hugh cut the mains power and then, with a torch, checked that nothing was alight.

In the morning he called an electrician who inspected the damage and told Hugh he must have been seconds away from a major fire while he slept.

Hugh couldn’t find anyone who would admit to phoning him in the wee small hours and there was no number left behind. But he shudders to think what might have happened if the phone hadn’t rang.

He is curious about whoever was watching over him that night and wondered it the phone call was from God.

Dear Lord, thank You for the way You work in mysterious ways. We thank You that You are always looking out for us. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.

Thursday, July 16, 2015

When we are weak God gives the strength.

Daniel 10:19 (ESV)
And he said, “O man greatly loved, fear not, peace be with you; be strong and of good courage.” And as he spoke to me, I was strengthened and said, “Let my lord speak, for you have strengthened me.”

On Tuesday, September 11, 2001, began like any other day Stanley Praimnath was in his office at World Trade Center Tower Two. The deacon and Sunday School Superintendent for Bethel Assembly of God of South Ozone Park, New York, looked out his window and saw United Air Lines Flight 175 heading straight for him.

"All I can see is this big gray plane, with red letters on the wing and on the tail, bearing down on me," said Stanley. "

But this thing is happening in slow motion. The plane appeared to be 100 yards away. I said, 'Lord, you take control. I can't help myself here.'" Stanley then dove under his desk.

"My Testament [Bible] was on top of my desk," explained Stanley. "I knew, beyond a shadow of a doubt, that the Lord was going to take care of me once I got there."

As he curled into a fetal position under his desk, the plane tore into the side of the building and exploded. Miraculously, Stanley was unhurt. However, he could see a flaming wing of the plane in the doorway of his department. He knew he needed to get out of his office and the building fast. But, he was trapped under debris up to his shoulders.

"Lord, you take control, this is your problem now," he recalled praying. "I don't know where I got this power from, but the good Lord gave me so much power and strength in my body that I was able to shake everything off. I felt like I was the strongest man alive."

Stanley was exuberant but also in great danger. Trapped inside the office, fire was starting to spread. While praying on his knees, he saw a flashlight being carried by a man behind the wall, "There's one thing I got to know-do you know Jesus?"

The man replied he went to church every Sunday. Then they prayed together, asking God to enable them to break through the wall. "I got up, and I felt as if a power came over me," said Stanley. "I felt goose bumps all over my body and I'm trembling, and I said to the wall, 'You're going to be no match for me and my Lord.'"

Moments later, he punched his way through the wall and, with the help of the man on the other side, was able to squirm his way through the hole in the wall. "The guy held me and embraced me and he gave me a kiss and he said, 'From today, you're my brother for life.'" Both men were able to miraculously escape the burning tower that day.

The Lord is the giver of all strength. 

Do you need a strengthening today? 

Dear Lord, thank You that You give the strength when we need it most. We pray today that we would hang onto the peace that You give uses. In Jesus’ Name. Amen. 

Wednesday, July 15, 2015

Conveyor belt is no problem for God.

2 Corinthians 4:8-9 (ESV)
8 We are afflicted in every way, but not crushed; perplexed, but not driven to despair; 9 persecuted, but not forsaken; struck down, but not destroyed;

When summer came there was no time for leisure. John returned to work in the sawmill.

One day he was assigned to put dressing on the long conveyor belt to keep it from slipping around the pulley. He had never before done this operation. In his inexperience, he applied the dressing to the in going side of the belt instead of the returning side. The belt grabbed his arm with such force that he was thrown off his feet. The operator slammed the stop lever and rushed to John's side, expecting to see a mangled arm still caught between the drum and the belt. Instead, John's arm was free and uninjured, and John had only belt burns and bruises on his hand.

"I can't believe it! It's impossible!" The operator kept repeating as he looked first at John's arm and then at John.

"Your whole arm was caught in there-I saw it!"

To demonstrate what should have happened, the superintendent, who had quickly arrived on the scene, placed a one-by-three board where John's arm had been and started up the conveyor belt. The board splintered like a matchstick.

Others who were present said they had seen John's arm drawn into the belt. "It's a miracle!" They said.

Did God save my arm-maybe even my life? John was filled with awe. Lord, last year You brought me through the truck accident and now through this. You must have something special for me to do. Maybe You can use me in spite of myself. To John it was a definite sign that God had work for him to do.

God is there protecting us daily, do you pause to give Him the credit?

Dear Lord, thank You for being there to protect us. Help our eyes be open so that we can see what You do for us. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.

Tuesday, July 14, 2015

Covered by His wings

Psalm 36:7 (ESV)
How precious is your steadfast love, O God!
    The children of mankind take refuge in the shadow of your wings.

Homing pigeons are amazing birds. They will fly home from as far away as 500 miles, at speeds of up to 50 miles per hour. They were extensively used during the First and Second World Wars to deliver important messages. The hen will lay two eggs, and both the cock and the hen will sit on these eggs, the cock for 8 hours during the day and the hen for the other 16 hours. It takes 18 days for the eggs to hatch, and in 24 days, the fledglings are ready to leave the nest.

But the thing that amazes me, as well, is that both adult birds will cover their young with their body and wings, all the time when they first hatch, and later, only when it is cold. They seem to know when the little birds need their protection and when they don't.

And isn't that the way it is with us? Sometimes we struggle, mentally, physically, or spiritually, and then, the Lord will talk to us through His Word and comfort us, even when words fail us.

How precious is God's lovingkindness indeed! When we are in trouble, we can come to Him, and He will protect us. We can put our trust in Him.

The little pigeons depend on the protection of the parents and they will look after them when they need it. Just so, we depend upon God. He calls us through His Word, and He will gather us as a hen gathers her chicks under her wings.

Dear Lord, there are so many times when we need Your protection. Thanks You for the ability to speak to You, and knowing that You will hear us. In Jesus' Name. Amen.