Be Reconciled

“Go and be reconciled.” Mt 5:24 NIV

A college professor who was teaching on the high cost of unforgiveness asked each of her students to bring a sack of potatoes to class. For each person they refused or were unable to forgive, they had to select a potato and write the date on it beside that person’s name. Then for a month, without fail, they had to carry that sack of potatoes with them everywhere they went. After lugging those sacks around for a while each student began to recognize how much weight they were carrying; the amount of energy it took to focus on their bag; and that they had to be careful not to leave it in the wrong place. Eventually, as the potatoes began to rot and stink, they realized that getting rid of them was the only smart thing to do. Imagine for a moment how many potatoes you might be forced to carry in a similar experiment. Even one potato would become foul and burdensome after a time. Jesus said, “For if you forgive men when they sin against you, your heavenly Father will also forgive you.  But if you do not forgive men their sins, your Father will not forgive your sins” (Matt 6:14-15). How would you like God to forgive you in the same way you forgive others? If that thought makes you uncomfortable, then do something beyond yourself. Don’t depend on your desire and ability to forgive others. Be obedient to God. Ask the Spirit of God to work through you to empower you to forgive!

Praying For The Nations

All nations around the world are included in this prayer. Or you can pray for an individual nation such as “the nation of _______.”


I had never really thought about praying for the nations, until I became a prayer leader. But this is a prayer we need to pray everyday, particularly for nations that are oppressed.


Joel 3:12……….Let the nations be awakened!

Isa 1:2…………..Let the earth hear the voice of the Lord!

Ps 9:20…………Judge the nations in Your sight, Father, and put them to fear,

Ps 9:20………….that they might know themselves to be but men.

Rom 8:22……….Father, the whole creation groans and labors

Rom 8:21……….to be delivered from the bondage of corruption,

Rom 8:21……….into the glorious liberty of the children of God.

Jn 15:26………..Send forth Your Spirit of Truth to bear witness of You,

Jn 16:8………….and to convict the world of sin, of righteousness, and of judgment.

Eze 14:6………..Cause them to repent and to turn from their idols.

Hag 2:7…………Shake the nations, so they will come to the Desire of All Nations(Jesus).

Num 23:24……..Father, cause Your people to rise up.

Joel 3:11………..Gather Your mighty ones to prepare for war.

Joel 3:14……….Bring the multitudes into the valley of decision.

Jer 49:14……..Send Your ambassadors into all the nations.

Col. 4:3………….Open to them a door for the Word, to speak the mystery of Christ,

Mt 24:14………..that the gospel of the kingdom may be preached in all the world.

Ps 111:6………..You have declared to Your people the power of Your works,

Ps 111:6……… giving them the heritage of the nations.

Phil 2:10………..Let every knee bow and every tongue confess that Jesus is Lord!

Isa 61:11………..Cause righteousness and praise to spring forth.

Hab 2:14………..Let the earth be filled with the knowledge of the glory

Hab 2:14………..of the Lord as the waters cover the sea.

Isa 43:9………….Father, gather the nations together,

Ps 22:27…………that they may worship Thee,

Ps 46:10…………and exult Thee in all the earth.

Gal 3:8……………Let all the nations be blessed through Your people,

Zech 14:14………and let the wealth of the heathen be gathered together

2Kin 22:5………..and be delivered into the hands of Your people for the work of the Lord.

Isa. 49:6…………Send forth Your salvation to the ends of the earth,

Mk 12:36………..and make Your enemies to be Your footstool.



Half The Sky

Half The Sky

Half The Sky is a passionate call to arms against our era’s most pervasive human rights violation: the oppression of women and girls in the developing world.

Undertake an odyssey through Africa and Asia to meet the extraordinary women struggling there, among them a Cambodian teenager sold into sex slavery and an Ethiopian woman who suffered devastating injuries in childbirth.

Through these stories and others, authors, Kristof and WuDunn, help us realize that the key to economic progress lies in unleashing women’s potential. Half The Sky is a heart-wrenching, eye-opening must read!

A reflection on the simplicity of Obedience…

When I was a young child in school, I loved when teachers would offer “extra credit.” While many subjects came very easy to me, others required more attention. Early on I discovered the power of “extra credit.” Those subjects I liked and enjoyed I would study and prepare more readily. However, those subjects I deemed unappealing, I would find myself procrastinating and seeking short cuts to completing the assignments. When teachers would allow me, I would do something extra or turn in an additional assignment to show them that I was really trying. Often the extra credit paid off and would be reflected in my grades as well as affecting their view of me. As students we used to call it “playing the game”, finding short cuts and essentially manipulating favor with teachers. I didn’t think of it that way at the time. After all, everyone did it. Some believers are like that in their spiritual walk with Christ. Are you playing a game with God and trying to manipulate His favor?


Rather than following God’s simple requirements to pray and read the Bible daily, go to church, and love your family, many choose the “extra credit” sacrifice. I’ve known Christians who attend church only on holidays, serve one time in prison ministry or volunteer one time a year in children’s church and talk about it for years to come as if they’ve earned ” extra credit” with God, as well as favor with other people around them. Instead of sharing the proverbial “fish tale”, they continuously share the “extra credit” tale of how they earned points with God. We like “extra credit” because it helps us get noticed by those around us. However, the most powerful people in the kingdom of God are not those who do sensational acts to get in the spotlight, but those who are consistent in their walk of faith. God wants our daily obedience.


According to Scripture, we are to “seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness” (Matthew 6:33). We need to seek and obey God every day. He has given each one of us an assignment and if we are willing to obey Him daily, we can fulfill that assignment.


When we start obeying God, we will see His power released in our lives. Maybe your marriage needs healing, your family needs reconciling, or whatever the circumstance, if you have sinned and fallen away from God, don’t try to earn “extra credit” with Him, just go back to the simplicity of repentance and daily obedience to His word. He is faithful and just to strengthen and receive you.

Resolving to Sow Mercy and Grace

We are told in Galatians that we will reap what we sow. If we want to reap grace, we must sow it. If we want to receive mercy, we must sow mercy. In relation to this, let us resolve to show grace to those who may see things differently than we do. Let us also resolve to always be humbly open to correction. That does not mean we automatically change our position because some disagree with us, but let us remain open and check out their position to see if there is truth we need to receive.


Some of the worst divisions in the body of Christ are between those who agree on 99% but disagree on one thing and then divide over it. This is extremism—a root of deception. This root is often the result of immaturity, instability, or insecurity. Even so, I don’t consider myself wise enough to judge other people’s motives without clear evidence. If I had endured their life experiences, I might be in much worse shape than they are. Therefore, I resolve to sow grace and mercy whenever I can, while not compromising my own convictions without clear biblical evidence that I need to.


In Philippians 1:9-10, we have a basic truth required for discerning truth:


And this I pray, that your love may abound still more and more in real knowledge and all discernment, so that you may approve the things that are excellent, in order to be sincere and blameless until the day of Christ;


We will not discern anything or anyone correctly without love. Love is the basis of “real knowledge,” and “all discernment.” More importantly than knowing someone’s life experiences, and judging from that, is having love for them. I may disagree with their doctrines or positions, but if I do not sincerely love them, I will not claim to understand why they believe as they do. Why is this important?


We are called to love our enemies. Giving others mercy and grace for believing the way they do, even while continuing to disagree with them, can help us love them. This is how we will come to a true understanding of them. “Understanding” comes from the term to “stand under” someone else’s position. We are called to make disciples of all nations, and we cannot disciple anyone we do not understand.





Beyond the Ritual

“A new command I give you: Love one another. As I have loved you, so you must love one another.”

John 13: 34-35


Recently I attended a mass at the most beautiful church in Ravenna, Italy. My husband and I were in Ravenna on that particular Sunday morning when beautiful church bells began ringing in the distance. Although we are not Catholic, finding no Protestant churches in the vicinity, we finally decided that we would attend. This cathedral, Basilica of San Vitale, is one of the most important examples of early Christian Byzantine Art and a UNESCO World Heritage site. We wanted so much to see the mosaics and the interior of this beautiful cathedral. Drawn by the melodious bells we quickly scurried into the cathedral and promptly took a seat in a small block of wooden pews near the front of the altar. The cathedral was magnificent with mosaics covering high vaulted ceilings and every wall within the building. The mosaics were bold and vivid in color even though they dated back to the 5th century. Visions of angels and saints danced along the walls, and in the center of the highest part of the wall was the face of Christ. A processional arrived with a Priest carrying a magnificent golden cross at the front while a few others paraded behind him singing as they approached the altar. From a balcony above, beautiful music and singing filtered through the cathedral resonating about the vaulted ceilings. It was truly beautiful to behold! The entire mass was in Italian and was written in a program for each congregate. Since I speak French I was able to decipher much of what was being stated. In the message there was much reference to Spirito Santo, the Holy Spirit, and Gesu Cristo, Jesus Christ.


During the service I found myself looking about at the small intimate congregation seated in the old wooden pews, while continuously praying for each one of them. Very few in number and mostly elderly, they sat attentively and repeated obediently according to the program. Then suddenly it hit me, there was such a heaviness about the room. The majority of the people were neither smiling nor rejoicing during the entire service. Although everything appeared so holy and lovely to behold, where was the joy that comes from entering the presence of a holy omnipotent God? Was much of what was being stated just an exercise in repetition and rote? In fact, how often do we as believers, regardless of our church affiliation, make rote statements and declarations about our relationship with Christ the Father? Do we truly know the Christ to whom we speak? Doesn’t He say in John 10:27, “My sheep hear my voice, and I know them, and they follow me” ? Do we recognize His voice? Do we truly follow Him? Or do we ritually complete the daily devotionals, which have become so popular and then call it a day? Do we truly have a revelation of who Christ is and who He has called us to be? Imagine, if congregates in all the churches had a true revelation of Christ and the authority that they have through Him. Then the nations would be completely transformed by His power. Freedom would reign and the fullness of joy would be evident in everyone.


As Christians we sometimes set ourselves above people of other faiths who do not believe as we do. We have a tendency to criticize others for their beliefs and to mock their rituals and behaviors. In fact, we often intentionally avoid others who are different from us and segregate ourselves in familiar groups with beliefs likening our own. Sadly, almost 90% of Christians minster only to other Christians and usually those are within their own groups. Jesus, on the contrary, met with all kinds of people of all kinds of faiths. We are called to love one another. Giving others grace and mercy for believing the way they do, even if we do not agree with them, is a way of showing love to them. Avoidance limits our opportunity to share the truth of Christ, which leads to transformation.


When we accept Christ we are given a marvelous gift of His Spirit to open our eyes to the wonders of an omnipotent God. We have been given an incredible opportunity to make a difference for ourselves and for others for eternity. And yet, in our selfishness we limit ourselves, and in effect others, in our failure to love people and to know intimately our Lord and Savior. Charles Spurgeon ( 1834 – 1892) a British Baptist preacher, still known as the “Prince of Preachers”, stated that “The door of the Word only opens to the key of diligence.” We essentially need to pour our lives into submission to the Word of God. We need to hear His voice daily and intimately and to love people in spite of their differing beliefs. We need to continually grow in our prayer life, in listening to His voice, and in the manifestation of His gifts within us and through us. This type of shift will by no means happen in the natural realm. As selfish and indulgent creatures we are helpless to achieve this goal independently. However, by His grace, by His strength, by His divine intervention, we can offer ourselves up wholly unto Him, allowing Him to make a paradigm shift within us; thus, leading us to heights beyond our reasoning, to His realm and to His Kingdom glory!



Prayer Needs for Italy:

  • Please pray for Italians enslaved by tradition or disillusioned with religious systems to encounter the living Christ.
  • Please pray for the power of God to be revealed and to set free those lost in the darkness of occult, pagan, and New Age practices.
  • Please pray for nominal Christians throughout Italy to gain a true understanding of the gospel.



My Thoughts on Perspective

In 2013, my husband and I traveled to both Israel and Jordan. While in Israel we had the opportunity to actually swim in the Dead Sea. It is so buoyant from the vast amount of salt deposits that you can actually float continuously in the water. Many believe that the Dead Sea is a dead thing, useless and without value. As you might expect, one’s first thoughts of the Dead Sea don’t exactly bring to mind wealth or abundant natural resources. In fact the name alone, the “Dead” Sea, would steer away most people from perceiving it to have any evident value at all. However, the Dead Sea’s unusual buoyancy might well suggest that the region is more than a pool of undrinkable water in the middle of a desert. In fact, in 1935 G.T.B. Davis wrote, “One is almost staggered by the computed wealth of the chemical salts of the Dead Sea. It is estimated that the potential value of the potash, bromine, and other chemical salts of its waters is four times the wealth of the United States”. With that revelation our perception of the Dead Sea now changes to an item of significant value. It is interesting isn’t it, the power of perception and its rapid shift when money or another’s influence is involved? Our core values and convictions mold our perception. If our core values and convictions are skewed with untruths, then our perceptions are not valid. We must first make sure that our core convictions are consistent with the truth that God has revealed to us in His Word. Reading the Bible requires that we change our perspective. Therefore, since man’s perspective will always be limited, we need God’s perspective in everything we do. As we pray for God’s perspective in our decision-making, our minds are enlightened with His revelation allowing us to see things more readily in His truth:


  • While we see a man struggling to find work to maintain his family, God sees a man sharpening his skills and strengthening his courage.
  • While we see a woman overwhelmed with stress and worry, God sees a confident, strong woman emerging from the ashes of tragedy and sorrow.
  • While we see a pitiful, helpless individual without an address or a phone number, God sees someone on the verge of beginning a new life.


I frequently ask myself, am I working from a position of man’s perspective or from God’s perspective? And then I pray that God will align my thinking to His thinking, and that His perspective will be my perspective; when I pray, when I read the Bible or when I disciple others. Only His perspective is without flaw. Only His perspective is the foundation of truth.


Radical by David Platt

In Radical, David Platt challenges us to consider how we have manipulated the gospel to fit our cultural preferences. He shows what Jesus actually said about being his disciple, then invites us to believe and obey what we have heard. He encourages us to join in The Radical Experiment; a one-year journey in authentic discipleship that will transform how we live in a world that desperately needs the Good News of Jesus.Truly inspiring!

Small Beginnings

“There are many of us that are willing to do great things for the Lord, but few of us are willing to do little things.”

Dwight L. Moody


Although Bruce and I have been blessed with many opportunities to minister this year, I remember when God first planted a seed in my heart to pray for the nations. I stared at a large multicolored map of the world and was in awe of the massive opportunities for prophetic intercession. I suddenly realized how, empowered by the Holy Spirit, my prayers from the small living room in my home could actually affect a nation and its people. Suddenly, the Lord illuminated a tiny speck on the map, one of the smallest nations in the world. This was my prayer assignment. I was somewhat disappointed. I wanted to storm the heavens of pivotal nations in the earth, but the Lord gave me a small beginning. Today I pray readily for whatever nation God places on my heart and now God is actually allowing me to go forth to many of these small nations to share the message of the gospel. This year my husband, Bruce and I had opportunities to minister in Croatia, Slovenia, Malta, and Italy to name a few. God is so faithful and hears the heart cry of His people! He heard my heart’s cry! Praise His name! And why? Because he planted it there!


How about you? Are you in the day of small beginnings even now? What has God called you to do?


If you are in the day of small beginnings, take heart. The Lord is rejoicing to see the work begin and He who called you to the work is faithful to strengthen your hands to do it, faithful to send workers into the field he called you to, faithful to encourage you by His Spirit and with His Word, faithful to provide all of your needs according to His riches in glory by Christ Jesus, and faithful to lead you into victory if you keep pressing toward the prize.

He who calls you is faithful, who also will do it (1 Thess. 5:23).

When the Impossible Becomes Logical

As a teacher I have always been fascinated by the sciences. One day I was watching a large cluster of cumulus clouds floating in the sky. Over the years I’ve learned a great deal about these clouds. Fluffy, puffy, cumulus clouds are so very beautiful on a pretty spring day. As children I’m sure we’ve all experienced the fun of searching for shapes of people or animals hidden in these magnificent clouds.


Do you realize that just one of these medium sized cumulus clouds is equivalent to the weight of 80 elephants? Imagine 80 elephants suspended in the sky. Assuming the weight of one elephant is about 6 tons that means that one medium cumulus cloud weighs about 480 tons. The thought of 80 elephants suspended in the sky is truly mind-boggling! Furthermore, the water is not in elephant-sized pieces, it is in tiny, tiny particles, which float on the warmer air that’s rising below. Amazing! Isn’t it? So how many suspended elephants would be equivalent to one huge storm cloud? About 200,000. That’s right, 200,000 elephants suspended in the sky. In fact, the clouds in a single hurricane weigh more than all the elephants on the entire planet! Forty million elephants!


As a Christian seeing the power and majesty of God across the earth strengthens my belief that “with God nothing is impossible!” He is a God who makes the impossible logical! To this day the sight of fluffy, puffy, cumulus clouds brings a huge smile to my cheeks….

80 dangling elephants indeed!


Logical! Logical! Logical!