Great Sermons Are Not Preached, They Are Lived!

I once heard, “Great sermons are not preached, they are lived.”

How challenging it is for us to read our Bibles every morning, and to absorb the teachings contained therein, and to put these powerful teachings into practice.

Let’s be completely honest about this; it’s very tough being a Christian and giving our life to Christ when we inhabit a body that is being tempted to sin!

That is why, in my humble opinion, it is absolutely essential that we spend as much time as possible each morning with our Heavenly Father, asking Him to prepare us for the day ahead and to help us and protect us from all the sinful opportunities being offered to us by Satan.

I know sometimes it’s hard to spend time with Jesus first thing in the morning.

But He knows what each day holds for us, and He longs to prepare us for every single problem He sees coming our way during the day.

Let’s accept His invitation to sit with Him. Let’s listen to Him intently. And let’s ask Him to intervene before our natural reactions to events betray our best intentions.

With many peaceful blessings

Geoffrey

Torment in the Land of the Kings

Legend held that Laksh’s homeland had been cursed for generations. Long ago, it is said, kings used it as a place to dispose of dead bodies and other refuse, and now spirits roamed the land, tormenting the people. When one of the spirits attacked Laksh’s wife, however, he knew she wasn’t suffering because of dead kings. This was the work of jealous neighbors.

 Neighbours Send Evil Spirit to Attack Woman

Laksh and his wife, Udgita, lived a contented life with their two children, but their neighbours weren’t as fortunate. The family members often fought with each other, and it pained them to see Laksh and Udgita’s happiness. Unable to achieve the same fulfillment, they lashed out at Udgita with a spell of black magic.

One day, Udgita closed her eyes and began murmuring things no one could understand. When people came near, she grew fearful, thinking they were trying to harm her. The same episode happened again the next month and the month after that.

A local witch doctor named Daivya began treating Udgita as the monthly attacks came, but the attacks only worsened. Now, when the evil spirit came, Udgita became violent with increased strength, ripping off her clothes and refusing to let others come near her.

One of Laksh’s relatives suggested visiting a Gospel for Asia-supported pastor, Chanchal, who had prayed for other people harassed by spirits and had seen them released, but Laksh felt uneasy approaching a pastor of a different faith. He could only hope Daivya’s treatments would begin to work soon.

Torment in the Land of Kings

Pastor Offers Prayers

Udgita’s condition didn’t improve, and life still carried the same responsibilities. Laksh had bills to pay and errands to run. He was picking up some things from the store when he happened to run into Pastor Chanchal.

Casually chatting as they got ready to buy their things, Laksh put away his fear of the pastor and shared about the spell placed on his wife by their neighbors. Pastor Chanchal told Laksh about God’s love and assured him that he would visit the family soon.

Still worried, Laksh allowed Daivya to come over one more time, but while the witch doctor was in the middle of his rituals, Laksh saw Pastor Chanchal coming. Laksh told Daivya to leave the room and let the pastor take charge of Udgita’s situation, but Daivya wasn’t quick to give up his role.

“It will do more harm to your wife to involve two different religions in this matter,” Daivya warned. “I am almost at the end of doing rites. Let me complete it.”

Laksh insisted the witch doctor stop, convinced Pastor Chanchal could save his wife. Several visiting neighbors supported his decision. While Udgita slept quietly in the other room, Pastor Chanchal sat down in the living room and began reading aloud from the Bible.

Suddenly, Udgita began to shout.

Woman Lashes Out As Pastor Prays

Udgita demanded that someone close the door to her room and quickly became violent. She tore down the mosquito net over her bed and ripped off her clothes.

Unable to enter the now half-naked woman’s room himself, Pastor Chanchal told Laksh to go to Udgita and control her, but Laksh was afraid to approach her. His wife’s strength had been increasing under the evil spirit’s power, making her violent display a serious threat to anyone who came near her.

Families and individuals often seek prayer from pastors, just as Laksh reached out to Pastor Chanchal.

Torment in the Land of Kings

“Nothing will happen to you because I will be praying to the Lord here,” Pastor Chanchal assured him.

Once again, Laksh swallowed his fear and, desperate to save his wife, faced the demon inside her.

Woman Released from Torment

When Pastor Chanchal (not pictured) began reading from the Bible and praying for Udgita, the woman became so violent that even her husband feared her.

Pastor Chanchal prayed fervently as Laksh walked into the other room, and to the amazement of Daivya and the other visitors, peace descended on the home. As the pastor spoke with His God, Udgita became calm.

As soon as he realized what had happened, Daivya rushed over to Pastor Chanchal and asked for the booklet he had used to drive out the evil spirit.

“I did not use any magic book like you,” Pastor Chanchal said, “but I used the Word of God. I have no Bible to give you, but what I can give you is this piece of literature. The Word of God is written in it. You may read it.”

That evening, Daivya couldn’t stop reading the literature. The next morning, he came to Pastor Chanchal’s house full of questions, and by the end of their visit, he had found his answers in Jesus Christ.

“I want you to come over to my house,” Daivya told the pastor, “and if you could help me remove all the religious booklets [and] charms, it would be so kind of you. I will now go to my teachers, and I will tell them of the new things I have learned about Christ.”

Woman’s Husband and Former Witch Doctor Share Christ’s Love

Having seen God’s tremendous power, Laksh and Udgita also decided to follow Christ, and like Daivya, Laksh began telling his co-workers about the One who had given his family new life.

Torment in the Land of Kings

This man pores over a piece of literature, just as Ugdita’s witch doctor was desperate to know more about the Word.

Torment in the Land of Kings

For now, other villagers fear persecution too much to embrace Jesus, but some of them say they believe in God’s Word. As Daivya, Laksh and Udgita continue to share what He did in their lives, they trust their neighbours will one day have the courage to believe in Christ without reservation.

What more effective way to share God’s love than through His own Word? Put literature into the hands of missionaries like Chanchal, and see how God changes people like Daivya, Laksh and Udgita again and again.

(A Report by Gospel of Asia)

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With many peaceful blessings

Geoffrey

The Gift of Prophecy

I have more than 4,900 friends on Facebook. 99% of my Facebook friends are Christian.

My Facebook friends live in many different countries and include many Bishops, Ministers, Pastors and Preachers.

Some of my Facebook friends have the gift of prophecy. One such friend is Pastor Denis Taskin who lives in Kenya.

Denis recently wrote to me – via Facebook – with a message from the Holy Spirit that the Holy Spirit had asked Denis to pass on to me.

Sometimes – as in this instance – you don’t have to pray for anything specific because when the Holy Spirit wants to interact and connect with you, He will surely find a way to do so!

The Facebook message from Pastor Denis reads:-

Beloved,

God has revealed to me another phase of your prophetic future. You know we the prophets can’t prophecy through a gifting. We prophecy from the Lord by divine discernment and by revelation.

God has unravelled and showed me seven strengths about your calling.

I see a character, love, prayers, integrity, robust faith, discernment of the spirit and holiness.

I also see God assessing the strength of your Anointing by adding more power and grace to you.

I have been up for over an hour interceding for you concerning God’s will for your life. God has an amazing harvest scheduled for you.

Abundant living and divine prosperity are on the way! God will honour your faithfulness.

I Corinthians 4:1-2:-

This is how one should regard us, as servants of Christ and stewards of the mysteries of God. Moreover it is required of stewards that they be found faithful.

Through prayers, God revealed to me of His promises concerning your life, and He also reminded me of taking good care of His children.

Your miracle harvest is on God’s calendar. I see divine protection over your life. The enemy is also getting weaker and weaker every day. I saw angels of prosperity all around you yet your attention was being held by familiar faces.

I also see a double digit increase in your finances… You see, at times friends can be thieves of your time, money and destiny (Just be careful of them).

I see a new life style of purpose, ambition and success operating in you. I want to tell you that the Lord has selected you to see His greatest miracle breakthrough in your life.

God is about to anoint you with a powerful spiritual gift of divine knowledge and He will also give you the ability to see through the power of the Holy Spirit as never before.

Isaiah 44:26:-

Who confirms the word of his servant and fulfils the counsel of his messengers, who says of Jerusalem, ‘She shall be inhabited’, and the cities of Judah, ‘They shall be built and I shall raise up their ruins’.

Finally I see divine protection, peace, prosperity, power and plenty. More Grace and Love from your Prophet of Increase.

Pastor Denis Taskin – Stay Blessed

 

And Denis sent me another prophetic message shortly thereafter. He wrote:-

God is going to allow you to recover everything you lost, plus gain some extra blessings you didn’t even qualify for.

Genesis 12:1-3
 

The ability to prophesy is not a gift given to everyone by the Holy Spirit!

But sometimes, and the prophecies to me above on  two such occasions, the Holy Spirit initiates a direct connection when there is an important message or messages that He needs to make known to you.

Our Father God and the Holy Spirit not only want people to believe in them but also to trust them.

For myself, I have no need of proof – I believe implicitly in the existence and presence of God/the Holy Spirit.

However, I have found that occasionally they exhibit a curious sense of humour.

Recently I happened to access a file on my computer entitled ‘The Power of the Blood’. As I began reading the documents in the file, my right nostril began to bleed. It was a curious feeling as I could feel movement within my nose and blood began to show on my handkerchief as I wiped my nose.

But as soon as I stopped reading the file, my nose stopped bleeding!!!!

I felt that God and the Holy Spirit just wanted to let me know that they were both watching over me.

With many peaceful blessings

Geoffrey

The Girl With An Umbrella

As a drought continued for what seemed an eternity, a small community of farmers was in a quandary as to what to do. Rain was important to keep their crops healthy and sustain the way of life of the townspeople.

As the problem became more acute, a local pastor called a prayer meeting to ask for rain.
Many people arrived. The pastor greeted most of them as they filed in. As he walked to the front of the church to officially begin the meeting he noticed most people were chatting across the aisles and socializing with friends. When he reached the front his thoughts were on quieting the attendees and starting the meeting.

His eyes scanned the crowd as he asked for quiet. He noticed an eleven year-old girl sitting quietly in the front row. Her face was beaming with excitement. Next to her, poised and ready for use, was a bright red umbrella. The little girl’s beauty and innocence made the pastor smile as he realized how much faith she possessed. No one else in the congregation had brought an umbrella.

All came to pray for rain, but the little girl had come expecting God to answer … Yes wonder how many of us behave as the people or the little girl. So next time we pray to God friends, let us behave like the little girl, expecting an answer.

Remember ask n it shall be given, open your mouth wide n the Lord will fill it

With many prayerful blessings

Geoffrey

Just Checking In

A minister passing through his church in the middle of the day,
decided to pause by the altar and see who had come to pray.
Just then the back door opened, a man came down the aisle.
The minister frowned as he saw the man hadn’t shaved in a while.

His shirt was kinda shabby and his coat was worn and frayed.
The man knelt, he bowed his head, then rose and walked away.
In the days that followed, each noon time came this chap.
Each time he knelt just for a moment, a lunch pail in his lap.

Well, the minister’s suspicions grew, with robbery a main fear.
He decided to stop the man and ask him, “What are you doing here?”
The old man said, he worked down the road. Lunch was half an hour.
Lunchtime was his prayer time, for finding strength and power.

“I stay only moments, see, because the factory is so far away.
As I kneel here talking to the Lord, this is kinda what I say: –

“I JUST CAME AGAIN TO TELL YOU, LORD, HOW HAPPY I’VE BEEN, SINCE WE FOUND EACH OTHER’S FRIENDSHIP AND YOU TOOK AWAY MY SIN.
DON’T KNOW MUCH OF HOW TO PRAY, BUT I THINK ABOUT YOU EVERY DAY. SO, JESUS, THIS IS JIM CHECKING IN TODAY.”

The minister feeling foolish, told Jim, that was fine.
He told the man he was welcome to come and pray just anytime.
Time to go, Jim smiled, said “Thanks.” He hurried to the door.
The minister knelt at the altar, he’d never done it before.

His cold heart melted, warmed with love, and met with Jesus there.
As the tears flowed, in his heart, he repeated old Jim’s prayer:

“I JUST CAME AGAIN TO TELL YOU, LORD, HOW HAPPY I’VE BEEN, SINCE WE FOUND EACH OTHER’S FRIENDSHIP AND YOU TOOK AWAY MY SIN.
I DON’T KNOW MUCH OF HOW TO PRAY, BUT I THINK ABOUT YOU EVERY DAY. SO, JESUS, THIS IS ME CHECKING IN TODAY.”

Past noon one day, the minister noticed that old Jim hadn’t come.
As more days passed without Jim, he began to worry some.
At the factory, he asked about him, learning he was ill.
The hospital staff was worried, but he’d given them a thrill.

The week that Jim was with them, brought changes in the ward.
His smiles, a joy contagious. Changed people, were his reward.
The head nurse couldn’t understand why Jim was so glad,
when no flowers, calls or cards came, not a visitor he had.

The minister stayed by his bed, he voiced the nurse’s concern:
No friends came to show they cared. He had nowhere to turn.
Looking surprised, old Jim spoke up and with a winsome smile;
“the nurse is wrong, she couldn’t know, that in here all the while
every day at noon He’s here, a dear friend of mine, you see,
He sits right down, takes my hand, leans over and says to me: –

“I JUST CAME AGAIN TO TELL YOU, JIM, HOW HAPPY I HAVE BEEN, SINCE WE FOUND THIS FRIENDSHIP, AND I TOOK AWAY YOUR SIN.
ALWAYS LOVE TO HEAR YOU PRAY, I THINK ABOUT YOU EACH DAY,
AND SO JIM, THIS IS JESUS CHECKING IN TODAY.”

With many joy-filled  blessings

Geoffrey

Pleasure

A couple of days ago, following the conclusion of the evening meeting, I was talking with Pastor Tim Howells and I asked him why he thought that the number of people attending church was declining at a fairly constant rate.

Pastor Howells gave me a one word answer: –

“PLEASURE”.

And that set me thinking.

When you study your Bible (as I do constantly) you will know that there are numerous references to the fact that the Sabbath day should be a day of rest.

God made the earth in six days and on the seventh day God finished the work that he had done, and he rested on the seventh day from all the work that he had done. So God blessed the seventh day and hallowed it, because on it God rested from all the work that He had done in creation (Genesis 2: 2-3).

Then in Exodus 20: 9-11 God says to Moses: –

Six days you shall labour and do all your work, but the seventh day is a sabbath to the Lord your God. On it you shall not do any work, neither you, nor your son or daughter, nor your male or female servant, nor your animals, nor any foreigner residing in your towns. For in six days the Lord made the heavens and the earth, the sea, and all that is in them, but he rested on the seventh day. Therefore the Lord blessed the Sabbath day and made it holy.

When I was a young child I attended a Methodist Sunday School every Sunday at 11am. Returning home at 12.15pm, I had dinner with my parents and then I was sent to my bedroom to have (at least) a two hour ‘rest’ on my bed.

On Sundays I was not allowed to play with my toys or to play outside my house with my friends.

Football matches, and other sporting activities, simply did not take place on any Sunday. Very few shops were open (except at the sea-side, perhaps). My mother would encourage me to improve my young mind by reading classical novels (like Dickens, Thackeray, Scott etc).

I remember that my father bought us a television in 1953 so that we could watch the coronation of our Queen but in those days there was only the BBC available and programmes were only shown at specific times during the day. So, I was in no danger of being seduced by unsuitable television programmes!

And, generally speaking, all churches seem to thrive. Many churches were filled every Sunday with regular worshippers. This, of course, was in the 1950s.

But – sadly – as soon as the law was changed to allow the Sunday opening of supermarkets and football matches (for example) to take place, slowly the traditional form of Sunday began to change and a decrease in the number of people attending church each Sunday with it.

And in the last decade or so, with the advancement of computer technology (especially in respect of the world wide web and emails), many young people stay up late on a Saturday night watching films, or playing computer games, and are much too tired to get up early enough on a Sunday morning to go to Sunday School or Young Church.

Even one of our Ministers, who has a ten year old grandson, is unable to persuade him to attend Sunday School because he is a member of his school football team who play their fixtures on a Sunday morning.

Understanding the problem is one thing – but fixing it is quite another.

How can today’s church environment possibly compete against the ungodly world? There are no Billie Graham’s around these days and there are relatively few outstanding evangelists.

Recently I have been researching the phenomena surrounding the Welsh Revival of 1904. One of the leaders of the Revival, Evan Roberts, had a vision that he would bring 100,000 souls to God within a few months.

Through long hours of prayer, Roberts began to speak at more and more meetings, at which the Holy Spirit descended upon all those present, which in turn led to a tremendous increase in the number of people attending church.

Meetings would last until 2, 3 or even 4am in the morning. Every church was overflowing with people and on many occasions, large crowds gathered outside the church because there was no room for them inside!

The main Welsh Revival took place from 1904-1906 but its effects lasted for a considerable number of years thereafter.

Just as it was in 1904, prayer today, in our twenty-first century – is very very important. Evan Roberts and his team spent many many hours in prayer – and the Holy Spirit bestowed great wisdom and oratory powers on the Revival preachers.

My wife, Marlene, and I always make time every day – no matter how busy we may be – for prayer. Sometimes we pray individually, sometimes we pray together. We live in a ‘House of Prayer’………..

A few months ago – just before Christmas – we began to attend the weekly Prayer Group at an Apostolic Church in Ebbw Vale.

It was totally different and a completely new experience for me. People were speaking in tongues; I had only ever read in the Bible that the Holy Spirit descended upon the disciples in Jerusalem whilst they were having a Pentecostal meal together.

All of them were filled with the Holy Spirit and began to speak in other languages as the Spirit gave them ability (Acts 2: 4).

Also different was the fact that the number of regular attendees at the Thursday morning Prayer Group was a greater number than could be found in some of the local Methodist Churches on a Sunday morning or evening.

Now returning to my original theme – ‘Pleasure’ – the challenge for us all is to adapt our Church presentation to meet the needs of people in our local community.

Pleasure – and leisure – certainly have their place in our weekly ‘menu’ of activities but if we do not make time for worshipping our Father God then we have truly ‘lost’ our way.

What do you think?

How can we reverse the present serious decline in our Church attendance? I’d love to hear your ideas. Or even your own experiences, where you live, about how you are managing to attract more people to your church?

Please send your ideas, thoughts and experiences to me at: –

geoffrey@mywalkwithgod.net

With many prayerful blessings

Geoffrey