Stewards4Christ

February 23, 2009

A Full Surrender!

Filed under: Uncategorized — Michael Wright @ 7:43 pm

Several days ago I posted some thoughts about half-way religion. My devotional thoughts today take me back to this particular area – that of making a full surrender to Jesus Christ. Don’t shoot the messenger! I didn’t write the Bible – I’m just reading and studying it and trying my best to apply what I learn to my spiritual walk with a holy God. What I’m reading certainly makes logical sense to me as well. I’m a very practical and logical person! Logically, how could a holy God that has a very high standard of holiness allow people into heaven who are not living a holy life? It would make heaven an impure place…heaven would become what this old world has become.

I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that you present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable to God, which is your reasonable service. And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, that you may prove what is that good and acceptable and perfect will of God” (Romans 12:1-2 NKJV).

I like what Dr. David Jeremiah says about this passage of scripture in his monthly devotional magazine, Turing Points: “Surrendering our ‘all’ to Christ doesn’t mean we’re dispirited prisoners waving a white flag. It means we’ve come face to face with the King of Kings, and we are willing to defer every preference to Him. Knowing He is all-powerful, we submit as a servant to a king. Knowing He is all-loving, we yield as a child to a father. Knowing He is all-wise, we gladly choose His will over our own.”

The question for me today, and the question I pose to you the reader, “Have I (or you) chosen His will over my (or your) own?” Making that full surrender to God completes your experience of full-salvation. Being saved is the first part, making that surrender to God and allowing him to cleanse your heart of that carnal nature is the second part, or the second half.

Jonathan Edwards, that great preacher said, “I have been before God, and have given myself, all that I am and have, to God; so that I am not, in any respect, my own… I have given myself clear away.”

Who is going to see God? We know that answer from the words of Jesus in Mathew 5:8, “Blessed are the pure in heart, for they shall see God” (NASB).

I close this post with these words from Edwin Hatch in thy hymn Breath on Me, Breath of God:

Breathe on me, breath of God,
Fill me with life anew,
That I may love what Thou dost love,
And do what Thou wouldst do.

Breathe on me, breath of God,
Until my heart is pure,
Until with Thee I will one will,
To do and to endure.

Breathe on me, breath of God,
Blend all my soul with Thine,
Until this earthly part of me
Glows with Thy fire divine.

Breathe on me, breath of God,
So shall I never die,
But live with Thee the perfect life
Of Thine eternity.

February 18, 2009

God Knows What Lies Ahead

Filed under: Uncategorized — Michael Wright @ 10:25 pm

“Come now, you who say, ‘Today or tomorrow we will travel to such and such a city and spend a year there and do business and make a profit.’ You don’t even know what tomorrow will bring–what your life will be! For you are a bit of smoke that appears for a little while, then vanishes. Instead, you should say, ‘If the Lord wills, we will live and do this or that'” (James 4:13-15, HCSB).

“As Christians, we are blessed to have a God who knows what lies ahead, and we can trust Him because the Bible tells us He plans to give us a future and a hope. All we have to do is live according to His Word, leave the details up to Him, and all Him to guide us into His will.” (Turning Points, Dr. David Jeremiah, 2/18/09)

Henry Ward Beecher said, “Every tomorrow has two handles. We can take hold of it by the handle of anxiety, or by the handle of faith.”

Which handle are you holding onto as you face tomorrow – if the Lord wills?

 

February 17, 2009

“The wicked man earns deceitful wages!”

Filed under: Uncategorized — Michael Wright @ 9:43 pm

“The wicked man earns deceitful wages, but he who sows righteousness (moral and spiritual rectitude in every area and relation) shall have a sure reward [permanent and satisfying]” (Proverbs 11:18, The Amplified Bible).

There couldn’t be a timelier devotional for today, 2/17/2009, than this one:    

Succeeding on the job (3)

      If you want to succeed in life practice honesty! One poll cited by Paul Harvey stated that 40% of American workers admitted stealing on the job, and 20% felt justified! Their rationalizing includes: “Everybody’s doing it, why shouldn’t I?” “The boss can afford it, he won’t miss it.” “It’s only small stuff, it won’t make any difference.” “The company owes me, I’m just taking what’s mine.” “I deserve it, I’ve worked hard and never been acknowledged.” What does God’s Word say about this? “The wicked…earns deceptive wages.” God says deceiving your employer by stealing time and materials, or delivering an inferior product and service, is “wicked.” That’s strong language! Of all people, employers and customers should be able to trust followers of Christ to be honest, work for their wages and provide the highest quality service.

      And for the record, it’s not smart to steal, even if you don’t get caught. “Ill-gotten gains do not profit” (Pr 10:2 NAS). You may take it but you won’t benefit by it. “Wealth obtained by fraud dwindles” (Pr 13:11 NAS). You can’t do the wrong thing and get the right result. Not only will you have trouble, you’ll bring trouble on those who love and need you most. “He who profits illicitly troubles his own house” (Pr 15:27 NAS). The job loss, damaged reputation, humiliation, legal costs and consequences are a “bill” the whole family pays for, often ending in shame and divorce and affecting several generations. Your spouse deserves an honest partner. Your children deserve a role model they can emulate, confident the path you walk is safe for them to follow.

Source: http://www.bobgass.com/word/default.aspx

I read with astonishment of yet another fraudulent scheme making today’s headlines!

SEC charges Stanford in alleged $8 billion scheme

Antigua-based bank offered ‘improbable’ rates on CDs, regulator says

This makes me think of one of the Apostle Paul’s strong warnings: “But people who long to be rich fall into temptation and are trapped by many foolish and harmful desires that plunge them into ruin and destruction” (1 Timothy 6:9).

How many people, and unfortunately, even Christians have fallen into financial traps…all in an attempt to make a “good return” on their investment? In my 38 years of living, I’ve seen this happen more than once to good people. It seems like the best of people are very susceptible to about anything when it comes to “making a buck.” May the Lord help us to seek His wisdom when it comes to how we invest the money He has entrusted to our stewardship.

But, back to my devotional…honesty – it is so needed today in our world! I’m amazed at the level of dishonesty everywhere around us, but even more amazed at dishonesty from those who profess to be Christian! God’s standard for honesty is absolute. The Bible makes it quite clear that God demands honesty from us. I like the last two sentences from the devotional above, “Your spouse deserves an honest partner. Your children deserve a role model they can emulate, confident the path you walk is safe for them to follow.” I desire to be an honest employee, an honest father, an honest husband, and an honest Christian! (For that matter, I don’t see how you can be a Christian and not be honest!) I’m thankful for the promise in Proverbs 11:18, “…he who sows righteousness will have a sure reward” (NKJV).

February 14, 2009

Do I have halfway religion?

Filed under: Uncategorized — Michael Wright @ 8:11 am

Today I’m starting a series of blog posts that will contain thoughts I have from my daily devotions. Do you have daily devotions…a time where you read from God’s Word and other Christian authors and a time where you pray and listen to God’s voice? If you don’t take time for daily devotions, you are missing out on one of the most special and rewarding things in life! On top of that, you are giving the devil an easy road into your spiritual life. A sure way of allowing Satan the opportunity of defeating you spiritually is to starve yourself spiritually. Just like not eating properly makes getting sick more likely, so not eating a healthy spiritual diet will cause you to be a weak Christian – in fact, you could be so weak and sick that you slide back into the life you were living before you became a Christian.

We all know that this world is not a friend of Christians! Everything in the world is stacked against us and positioned to cause us spiritual defeat. I’m thankful for my daily devotional times…I only regret that I cannot find more time to spend with God. But, He chose to bless me with four wonderful children, so I have to realize that my personal alone time is going to be limited right now. It is during these quiet times that God helps me know what I need to do to be more like Jesus Christ.

You know, one of the things I think Satan really wants is “Christians” who think they are “good to go” but in reality they are very unstable and actually may not be really serving God with the entire heart, or worse yet, not even a true Christian! Please God, help me to never be in that category. Let me share some important verses I read last night from The Living Bible:

“If you want to know what God wants you to do, ask Him, and He will gladly tell you, for He is always ready to give a bountiful supply of wisdom to all who ask Him; He will not resent it. But when you ask Him, be sure that you really expect Him to tell you, for a doubtful mind will be as unsettled as a wave of the sea that is driven and tossed by the wind; and every decision you then make will be uncertain, as you turn first this way, and than that. If you don’t ask with faith, don’t expect the Lord to give you any solid answer. A Christian who doesn’t amount to much in this world should be glad, for he is great in the Lord’s sight. But a rich man should be glad that his riches mean nothing to the Lord, for he will soon be gone, like a flower which has lost its beauty and fades away, withered – killed by the scorching summer sun. So it is with rich men. They will soon die and leave behind all their busy activities.” (James 1:5-11)

The words in verse 8, “doubtful mind” are translated as “double-minded” in the KJV…in fact, in that translation the verse continues and says that the “double-minded man is unstable in all his ways.”

Are you trying to live a double standard with your life? In the one hand are you trying to hold onto things of this world…things that the world places a lot of value on but “mean nothing to the Lord” while in the other hand trying to serve the Lord? Has Satan deceived you into thinking you can “have the best of both worlds?” It is impossible…don’t let Satan deceive you in this way!

Jesus told us in Luke 16:13 that it is all or nothing! He demands all of our affection, or else we are not serving Him, it is that simple. “No household slave can be the slave of two masters, since either he will hate one and love the other, or he will be devoted to one and despise the other. You can’t be slaves to both God and money” (HCSB).

“Money can easily take God’s place in your life. It can become your master. How can you tell if you are a slave to money? Ask yourself: Do I think and worry about it frequently? Do I give up doing what I should do or would like to do in order to make more money? Do I spend a great deal of my time caring for my possessions? Is it hard for me to give money away? Am I in debt? Money is a hard and deceptive master. Wealth promises power and control, but often it cannot deliver. Great fortunes can be made—and lost—overnight, and no amount of money can provide health, happiness, or eternal life. How much better it is to let God be your master. His servants have peace of mind and security, both now and forever.” (The Life Application Study Bible)

A.F. Harper, in his book Holiness And High Country, says, “God has something better than halfway religion. When we give ourselves wholly to Him, He gives himself fully to us.” What our world needs, what America needs is stable Christians…Christians that are really a Christian! Christians that are determined to “go all the way” with God!

My prayer for today comes from the words to a gospel song by J. W. Van Deventer:

All to Jesus I surrender. Make me, Savior, wholly Thine; let me feel the Holy Spirit, truly know that Thou art mine.

January 20, 2009

Because He Lives – We Can Face Tomorrow

Filed under: Uncategorized — Michael Wright @ 8:34 pm

Today was a very emotional day for me in several ways.  One of which was the Inauguration of President Obama.  Wow!  What a day in the US and in our world.  I sat tonight in a local restaurant with Shawna and watched some of the televised coverage of the inaugural ball.  Oh, there was a lot of pomp and circumstance…and the President and his wife looked like two of the happiest people in the world.  However, I couldn’t help but thinking about the fact that we have one of our youngest Presidents but also a man with very little experience.  It is scary to think about how this man was placed in the most powerful position in the world…all because of our liberal and very biased media!  It is a sad day in America and in our world.

 

However, the good news is, I serve a risen Savior… “You ask me how I know He lives?  He lives within my heart!”  I sat tonight here at my computer, holding my only son, Karson, who is now six months old.  He doesn’t have a clue what happened today in America…but he knows that his Mommy and Daddy took care of him today and that we’ll take care of him tonight and tomorrow!  He is totally trusting in our care.  I know that my heavenly Father will take care of me tonight and tomorrow!  I pray that I can trust in Him the same way that Karson trusts in me.

 

While I held him, I  watched this video clip of the Gaithers sing one of my very favorite songs, Because He Lives.  This verse has special meaning in a new way, now that I have Karson: “How sweet to hold, our newborn baby, and feel the pride and the joy he gives.  But greater still, the calm assurance, we can face uncertain days, because He lives!”

 

It gives me great joy to know that no matter what the headlines say tomorrow, our God is in control!  The Gaithers wrote this song when I was 2 years old.  Thirty-seven years ago things looked gloomy…yet God gave the powerful words of this song to some of my favorite song writers!  And even though things seem gloomy today, the same God that has kept me for the past 39 years will keep me during the next 4 years!

 

This link will take you to video of the Gaithers talking about this song and why they wrote it, along with some video of the song being sung.  This second link takes you to a much more recent recording of the song with a shot of the Gaither’s son who they wrote the words about.  I pray that these words and the message of the song will encourage you tonight and during the days that lie ahead.

 

God bless all of you tonight…keep your eyes on Jesus Christ!

December 21, 2008

Christmas 2008 – “the least of these”

Filed under: Uncategorized — Michael Wright @ 5:02 pm

When you refused to help the least of these my brothers, you were refusing help to me” (Matthew 25:45, The Living Bible).

Christmas 2008 has been special to me in some different ways. Sometimes I write a “Christmas e-mail” and update our friends and family on our family and how everyone is doing. Shawna did that for us this year while I was out-of-town on a business trip last week. She wrote a very nice e-mail and shared it with several different people. So, I decided to write my Christmas thoughts and post them to my blog. So, here goes…

This year we participated in Operation Christmas Child in cooperation with our church and with our dear friends, the Fuchs. We got together back in November with the Fuchs and made an evening out of preparing the shoeboxes, making cards, etc. It was a wonderful evening and it was so nice to show our children the importance of giving something to “the least of these.” OCC is a very worthwhile project, and if you’ve never participated I would challenge you to consider doing so next year. Make OCC a part of your family’s Christmas traditions.

This past week, I had to go to St. Louis for my employer, Associates Solutions, Inc. I was a little apprehensive about making this business trip. It has been at least three years since I traveled for my job. I know we’ve added two children to the family and I knew it was going to be an extra load for Shawna to have me gone for two days. None-the-less, duty called, so I went on the trip. My trip involved working with one of our clients, Ranken Jordan (A Pediatric Children’s Hospital). I just have to say, this was the best two days (so far) of my job as a software consultant! I know God orchestrated the timing of my trip…and He protected my family while I was gone and kept His hand upon me while I traveled. We’ve had plenty of snowy weather already this year and I was worried I would get caught in another winter storm. But, God even kept that from happening. I was able to drive both directions on totally dry pavement! I thank God for His help. Let me tell you why Ranken Jordan was so special to me.

First of all, it is a specialty hospital that takes care of convalescent children. They are one of five of this type of hospital in the entire United States! Anything that involves children grabs at my heart strings. I thank God for my four children, but I’m also thankful for every opportunity I have to love on other children. I have some special girls that I consider my nieces…and almost every time I see them I’m blessed with a big hug from them…just like they are my own girls! God has given me a soft spot for little girls (good thing, since I have three of my own!). So, from the get go I was excited about working for a facility that takes care of children. You can read more about what Ranken Jordan does by clicking on the link above and viewing their website.

The second thing that was so neat about this trip and this hospital were the people I was privileged to work with. I worked with four ladies for the two days I was there. They were some of the kindest people I’ve ever worked with. It didn’t take but just a couple of hours for me to feel like I had known them and worked with them for years! It is always special when God allows us to meet and work with people who are so kind. It sure makes my job something more than just a j-o-b! Working with people like this always challenges me to make sure I’m kind and pleasant to work with as well. We really can be refreshing to others just by always displaying a kind and sweet attitude.

The third thing that I liked was the experience I had on Friday while at the hospital. At 10 AM, the city of Maryland Heights, MO brought Santa Claus to the hospital. This is a yearly Christmas tradition and something that really moved me emotionally. The police department shuts down the main road in front of the hospital and they escort S.C. to the hospital in a PT Cruiser. The children at the hospital absolutely love this day! From what I could tell, the employees think it is pretty special as well! I was told by the CEO that this was the best day of the year at the hospital. I’m glad I was able to be there and share in the excitement. The police went shopping for items that the children in the hospital either needed or wanted. They brought the paddy wagon to the hospital full of presents for these children, approximately 30 of them. With the police dogs and all the policeman gathered in the gymnasium at the hospital I stood and watched as each child was presented his/her gifts by Mr. & Mrs. Santa Claus. It was so special. It truly visualized one of the most important aspects of Christmas…doing something for “the least of these.”

My Christmas experience of reaching out to others was completed last night when we visited Ruby Woods, a dear lady we’ve known now for about 5 years. She is 89 years old and physically incapacitated to the point where she cannot get out of her house. She lives in the country down near Ottawa, KS. Shawna and I took the 4 kids and went to her house last evening for a visit. It was one of our coldest nights so far…and it surely wasn’t very fun being out in the country with 4 kids, including a 5 month old baby when it was 13 degrees outside! But, I know that Ruby sure enjoyed our visit. We took her goodies that we had made and a picture of our girls for her refrigerator. This makes me think about the pain and inconvenience that Mary and Joseph were willing to go through in order for God’s plan for my redemption to be complete. I’m thankful that Mary wasn’t afraid of the pain, or the cold, or the dirt of the stable. May I never be unwilling to inconvenience myself for the good of reaching out to “the least of these.”

I trust each of you have a very Merry Christmas!

November 22, 2008

2008 Thanksgiving Thoughts

Filed under: Uncategorized — Michael Wright @ 9:40 am

Sunday, November 23, is what I call Thanksgiving Sunday. Every year I like to write out some thanksgiving thoughts and share those with others. It always does me good to express my thoughts in writing. I trust that the reader of these thoughts will have your thoughts drawn toward God and all that He has done for each of us. The song writer said, “Count your many blessings – and it will surprise you what the Lord has done!”

I thank God for the plan of full salvation. I’m so thankful that Jesus Christ paid the price for my sins and that my sins have been forgiven. I’m thankful for the second work of grace God provided which cleanses our hearts from the carnal nature that we are all born with! Praise the Lord that we can live a life free of sin! (1 John 1:9; 1 Thessalonians 5:23-24) If you have experienced the full salvation provided by God, you have much to be thankful for today.

I must not fail to thank God for His faithfulness to provide for all of the financial needs of my family during 2008. He promised that all of my needs would be met…and He has been faithful. If I went to bed hungry one time in 2008 it was my own choosing. I’m thankful that God has kept me employed by Associates Solutions, Inc., through another year. He has even provided some of my wants and I give Him thanks for everything.

God blessed Shawna and I with a baby boy on July 18! Karson Jay has certainly been a blessing to our family. He was a perfect baby, not a flaw that I could see on his little body! We are very thankful that God brought him into our family. I’m thankful that all six members of my family have been blessed with good health this year.

4 months old

4 months old

November 2008

November 2008

God also blessed our family with some friends, Greg & Becky Fuchs. The Fuchs also home school their children (as we do) and it has been a blessing to become acquainted with them. We have become such good friends that they are like my brother and sister! I feel like we are siblings from a different mom! We are also thankful for our friends, Bob & Vicki Holloway. Vicki also is as dear to us as a sister. She and Bob came and visited earlier this month and they spoiled our kids rotten! We thank God for the blessings of family and friends who love us!

Last, but not least, I thank God for the privilege of being an American and getting to live in the greatest country in the world. This year brought a historical election across the radar screen of life! I was very disappointed in the outcome of the election, but I know God is still in control of this world. At times it may seem Satan is running this world, but we know based on the authority of God’s Word that God is still in control. Even though the stock market is down, even though banks have closed, I know that God is still holding the whole word in the palm of His hand. I believe this passage of scripture from Habakkuk is very appropriate: “Though the fig tree does not bud and there is no fruit on the vines, though the olive crop fails and the fields produce no food, though there are no sheep in the pen and no cattle in the stalls, yet I will triumph in the LORD; I will rejoice in the God of my salvation! Yahweh my Lord is my strength; He makes my feet like those of a deer and enables me to walk on mountain heights! “(Habakkuk 3:17-19, HCSB). Whatever the future holds, we know that Yahweh my Lord will be in control and will be providing for and taking care of His children.

I want to close with some words from the song “He Never Has Failed Me Yet” written by W. J. Henry:

Then I’ll dread not the future, and fear not the foe. I am safe in His keeping wherever I go; for no soul that has trusted Him will He forget, For He never has failed me yet! He never has failed me yet. He never has failed me yet. I have proven Him true; what He says He will do. He never has failed me yet.

November 1, 2008

I’m tired of hearing this stuff!

Filed under: Uncategorized — Michael Wright @ 9:39 am

Okay, we are in the final three day countdown before the 2008 national election in America. Wow!! What a year it has been as far as politics are concerned. I’ve never considered myself to be “into politics” – however, even now I find myself thinking about politics quite often! My friend, Becky Fuchs, laughs at me because I told her I wasn’t into politics, yet she came to visit us recently and saw six signs in our yard! She’s been “making fun” of me ever since! (It is okay, as I know she is only kidding me a little bit, and I certainly deserve that since I do my fair share of kidding others!)

Thursday evening, Shawna and I watched Barack Obama’s infomercial from YouTube. Urghhhh!! It frustrates me to hear this sort of make-America-look-bad-stuff! That’s all it was to me, an opportunity for Senator Obama to make it look like everyone in America is poor, unable to buy snacks for their family and having to ration the milk! Oh sure, I recognize that there are people and families in America who are struggling financially. Jesus told us in His Word that the poor would always be with us, “You always have the poor with you, and you can do good for them whenever you want” (Mark 14:7). Yes, I believe we need to help each other out…but I don’t believe that “helping each other” should be forced on us by governmental leaders. I believe God’s plan is for everyone, and especially Christians, to always be looking around for those in our lives that we can help. One of my many frustrations with Senator Obama is that he doesn’t have a history, at least that I know about, of being very helpful to those in his life. Yet, he is very adamant that the wealthy in America should have to have their wealth spread around to those who have less. Senator Obama needs to set a good example by voluntarily helping others, starting with his brother in Kenya who lives in a hut and his aunt who lives in the slums.

Anyway, enough of that…what I want to do now is give my personal make-America-look-good thoughts.

First of all, I’m very thankful to have been born in America. America is the greatest, the most powerful, and the wealthiest nation in the world. What a privilege to be able to say, “I’m proud to be an American!” I’m very thankful God allowed me to be born in this great country 38 years ago! What a blessing. I’m thankful to have the freedoms that we all enjoy and take for granted each and every day. The freedom to worship God as often as we want…the freedom to have copies of the Bible in our house…the freedom of free speech and being able to say what we think. We are so blessed here in America. I hope whoever reads this blog will take time to pause and thank God for America. Our great country has done so much to provide for people all around the world…we’ve provided food, we’ve provided freedom, and we’ve made it possible for the message of the gospel of Jesus Christ to be spread all around the world via every form of media! God has truly blessed our country up until this point in history! Thank you God for all that you’ve done for us! The freedoms that we have, however, have not come without cost. I’m very thankful for every man and woman that served our country and for those who died so that these freedoms and rights that I enjoy as an American could be mine!

Secondly, I’m thankful to have been born into a Christian home! I’m thankful that my parents taught me the importance of “working for what I get” and that they taught me the importance of being a good and faithful steward of the money and resources that God trusts to my care. We have a huge problem in America and in our world. So many people don’t want to take personal responsibility for their own lives and they don’t want to practice basic principles of honesty, discipline, and hard work. The more that is done for us, the more it causes people to surrender personal responsibility and accountability. What a shame! Oh sure, hard times will come…people lose jobs or encounter unexpected medical expenses…but for the most part, people who are “hard up” are that way because of a past life that lacked discipline, honesty, and careful living. Many want to blame our government and look to our government for a “rescue plan.” What a shame. God’s Word clearly tells us that if a person doesn’t work they should not expect to eat; “If anyone isn’t willing to work, he should not eat” (2 Thessalonians 3:10). Handing Americans something on a silver platter isn’t going to make our country better…we need to focus on honesty, self-control, discipline, and personal responsibility.

My final thoughts…I’m thankful to have had to work for everything I have. I spent over six years attending private college and receiving two degrees so I could be prepared to work and earn a living for my family. Nobody handed me a college education…I worked my way through and repaid my student loans as quickly as possible. Shawna and I waited to buy our first home until we could afford a down-payment and make the monthly payments. We drove used cars, used free or cheap furniture, and waited until we had been married nearly 14 years to buy our first comfortable easy chair! We decided to follow Biblical financial principles. We decided to take personal responsibility and practice self-control, discipline, and honesty. In fact, 15 of my 17 ½ working years were spent at Christian ministries where my salary for most of those years was only $19k – $45k per year. It wasn’t until I was 37 years old that I earned more than $60k a year. Shawna has been a stay-at-home-Mom for the past 11 years. Yet, in spite of this, we are debt free other than our house, and we have a very modest and manageable mortgage payment. God has provided for us and taken care of our every need…we’ve tried to do our part and He has done His part! Am I bragging? NO! I’m telling you my story. Obama told us stories of other families…I want my story to be heard. I want America to know that things are not all doom-and-gloom…we don’t need Senator Obama to be our savior!

So, Senator Obama, you and I do agree on one thing…CHANGE! We do need change in America…but it isn’t the kind of change you’ve outlined in your Obamanomics. We need to turn back to the principles of God’s Word that this great country was founded upon. We each need to be personally responsible and practice self-control, discipline, honesty, and hard work! That is the CHANGE that is needed!

I’m reminded of the words from a song sung by The SteelesWe Want America Back. Please listen to this song and especially the narrative by Jeff Steele:  We Want America Back by The Steeles.  Do your best to rise up and be part of the Army of God to help take America back! November 4, 2008, is your opportunity to help promote the kind of CHANGE that is needed in America…GET OUT AND VOTE!

September 22, 2008

Pastor Mark Arnold talks with Todd & Sarah Palin

Filed under: Uncategorized — Michael Wright @ 7:38 pm

I received this e-mail this evening and called and visited with Pastor Mark Arnold. This is not an internet scam and it really did happen. He has heard from people in 23 states this weekend and today CBN News spent 90 minutes on the phone with him and reported on this event. He is calling Christians everywhere to prayer for the upcoming election. Pastor Arnold pastors Covenant Christian Church which is just north of Cincinnati, OH. He gave me permission to post this on my blog and says this can be shared with anyone.

—– Original Message —–
From:
MEA31975@aol.com
Sent: Saturday, September 20, 2008 9:33 PM
Subject: Pastor Mark’s Meeting with McCain & Palin

Dear Pastor Clagg: 
 
Thank you for contacting me with your words of encouragement regarding my recent face-to-face meeting with John McCain and Todd and Sarah Palin – when they were on their Bus Tour in Lebanon, Ohio.
 
The meeting was a Divine Appointment with a definite message that God wanted me to share with all of them.  Meeting John McCain was a tremendous honor simply as I respect anyone with the track record of being a POW and for his years of leadership in Washington. 
 
Upon sharing with Sarah Palin the message that she is a “present day Esther” was a very humbling and moving ministry opportunity for me.  Her receptivity of the Truth was very evident as she was moved to tears and that she shook her head in a positive manner, thanking me for giving her the words that she will think about and stand on in the coming days.  Both her and her husband, Todd, received the words that the Lord allowed me to share.  They are a very strong team of integrity, honesty, confidence and an allegiance to God that will truly change the face of politics. 
 
While so many nay-sayers and complainers and criticizers want to hunt them down, and destroy their destiny and purpose they will not be able to remove the fact that God was grooming Sarah Palin in a little town called Wasilla, Alaska and at the appropriate time, God birthed her “…for such a time as this.”
 
Brother Ron, I want you to know that while I preached a Revival in your home town at your Church in Idaho, more than 15 years ago, you shared with me your heart regarding “Taking Our Cities for God” and “Spiritual Warfare” and as a Pastor/Evangelist like myself, I turned up the “heat” when I got home and began to call our Congregation to prayer…not just to pray – but to pray until answers came!  We stormed the “gates of hell” and we decided
that we would do what it takes to be a people that God could use and “believe God for anything!”
 
Now, all of the preaching and teaching and believing has surely been recognized in Heaven by our God – who really is interested – in the Leadership of our Country.  My Heavenly Father spoke to me…and I heard His Voice!
 
In this Truthful – real – definite – Ministry event that the LORD called me to in meeting McCain/Palin, in the little Ohio town recently, I share the event and exactly what happened with you as a Testimony of Praise to God for allowing me to “hear the voice of God” and then “carry out His message in a timely fashion.
 
Use this story in Email form.  Please know that you can send it to the ends of the earth to anyone who has ears to hear!  I know this is true…because I experienced it.  I will never be the same. When the Anointing shows up…things change…and my prayer is that God will move in the hearts and lives of anyone who reads this email story.  Oh God, let the prophets who have been hiding out in the caves and dens of the earth come out – for it’s time to guard one another and spiritually “fight” the good fight of faith! 
 
And for anyone who needs to verify or confirm this story that follows, please Email me or call me at the following numbers: MEA31975@aol.com        (513) 291-0425
 
Be Blessed!
Pastor Mark Arnold        

(PLEASE READ ENTIRE STORY BELOW)
 
This past Tuesday, the McCain / Palin Bus came through a little town called, Lebanon, Ohio.  The LORD allowed me to go to the Rally giving them a message that He wanted me to personally deliver.

Sunday Night – a burden hit me that would only shake me to my knees – I prayed and wept for our Nation.  Never has my heart been so broken before God.  I literally interceded for these wonderful people who do not deserve all the hate against them.  The GOD-Haters are going to try everything to stop them, but they will not succeed! 

God is not pleased with the “bashing” in the News of this “Anointed” person.  He has called her for this time!  I promised God that I would pray and hold them up in prayer.  I would “listen” out and be mindful of where they were.  The following day is important in this time-line…because I didn’t even know until God spoke to me…

Monday and into Monday Night – the burden of prayer was so heavy that I was literally shaking and could not stop weeping.  I didn’t know that they were coming to Ohio.  I prayed and walked and wept and walked.  I prayed and prayed and wept and prayed…

Tuesday at 2:00 A.M. – God spoke these words to me – “…Go turn the Radio on!”  Immediately the Reporter’s Words were – “McCain & Palin Bus to be in Lebanon later this morning for a 10:00 A.M. Rally!”

Immediately on hearing that news, I heard God again…God said, “You are to go.  You will meet them and give them a message for Me!”

I prayed as an intercessor and went to a place in prayer that I don’t think I’ve ever been…because the LORD had just visited me…and I knew I was on a ” Mission .”  I had now been up since Sunday NIght…and now it’s Tuesday and I’ve got to go on the “WORD of the LORD.”  He sure became My Strength as this unfolds…

I didn’t stop praying until I drove over to the town and parked the car.  The News would later report they were expecting 5,000 people and the actual head-count of those who had been scanned was more than 10,000 people. 

I simply obeyed…and God actually told me where to stand, who to talk to…and when to be on the move.  I had sure learned on the Mission Field, when God wants to open a door, He will do it at the appropriate time.  He always has someone to assist…and even those standing beside you may just be an Angel.

I struck up a conversation with an agent on the ground – he simply said, “I can’t allow you to stand here!”  Here is where the bus was going to actually pull up to.  They had to make a much larger perimeter so the entire area was now being moved back several blocks.  The only other thing he told me to do was to go through the metal detector zone and just watch from the back.  So, that’s what I did.

Due to sensitivity of the Internet…I can’t share much of the story as to what happened next was a definite GOD THING ALL THE WAY. 

Looking over the shoulders and backs and heads of all those people…I knew it would take a miracle for what GOD told me to do.

As I was standing there, two Boy Scouts came running up my back…literally, they almost knocked me to the ground because they were running so fast behind me…up my back and over to the right.  These Boy Scouts were about Junior High Age.  Their Scout Leader and several others were behind them…but as the two out front was trying to push through the crowd, saying they were late…the smaller scouts were left in their dust.  The Scout Leader who was with a McCain Rep from the State grabbed me and told me bring the other Scouts up front as they try to keep up with the first two that just came through.

I just became the leader of the rest of the Scouts to lead them right up front and center.  As the Rep was shouting back at me…to bring the Scouts forward…the people parted just like God parted the Red Sea.

I marched them boys right up front and to the right of the stage as one was looking from the back.  When I got there I was fifteen feet from the podium.  GOD said,
“Stand here, and don’t move from this spot.”
Within five minutes…the bus pulled up and around the other side McCain, Sarah Palin and her husband Todd stepped up and the speeches took off.  I was where God placed me…and even Sarah Palin and Todd were standing on my side of the stage.  I made eye contact, I gave them thumbs up gestures…and I knew they were just happy to see me standing there.  Ha Ha 

When they came around the podium and started on the other side, I knew they were coming right toward me, a little lady who stood by me, reached up and told the Rep that they had promised a Picture with her because she was the one who had lost a son in Iraq, recently.  The Rep confirmed she would get a pic with them and they would talk to her.  When McCain came to hug her… he immediately shook my hand and following his moment with her, I shook his hand as he grabbed my hand, now for the second time, and I said, “God wants you to know that I’m praying for you, Sir!”  He thanked me and kept smiling.  I repeated that phrase to him five times.  He grabbed my hands and looked right into my eyes and said, “I won’t make it without prayer.  Sir, Thank You for praying for me, and don’t let one day go by that you don’t pray for me.  I need all the prayers that I can get. Thank you, Thank you, Thank you!”As he moved to my right, Sarah Palin, came over to my left side…standing over the crowd and then looking at the little lady who had lost the son.  It took a moment for her to shake some hands and people were pushing in all around.  Sarah came and got on her hands and knees on that side of the stage and hugged that little Mom, telling her, “…it was not in vain.”  She promised her support. 

It was at this moment Sarah Palin, reached out for me to help her up and as I was assisting her to stand I was now face to face with her and GOD said, “Open up your Mouth and I will fill it.”Here is what came out…

“God wants you to know that you are a present day Esther!” 

[She immediately began to cry]!

“God wants to tell you that you are Chosen for such a time as this!”Her husband Todd came over and I told him what I told her.  He began to cry.

“You are called, and chosen to be a leader.”

“Don’t lose heart and don’t fear man.”

“The news and nay-sayers and criticizers are going to be very hateful toward you… and in the days ahead they are going to turn up the heat…but do not fear.”

“You are a present day Esther.”   You are an Esther.  You are an Esther!

“Keep your eyes on GOD and know that He has chosen you to Reign!”

“Stay strong…be strong…don’t tire.  Don’t be weary in well-doing.  Be strong.”

I emphasized the fact that he was to guard her at this time…and know that “…she is GOD-CALLED and GOD-ANOINTED.”  “…this is a GOD-THING and your wife is a Present day Esther…she is for God to use at this time…She is an Esther…she is an Esther…she is an Esther.”At this moment, McCain came right to where I was finishing talking to Todd and I told Mr. McCain exactly what I told to Sarah and Todd Palin.

“You will be hated…but stand strong…GOD has called both of you to stand!”

“We are praying and I am praying for you…!”

“Mr. McCain …they are called of God and she is an Esther.”He shook my hand and with a deep look of understanding what I had just said, he said, “Thank you for your prayers and support…I really do mean that!”And he turned and shook more hands…and I watched them as they went through the crowd.

“Don’t lose hope and don’t lose heart.”

“We are praying for all of you!”

When I got to my car I sat there for quite a long time…knowing the GOD of the Universe had just used me to deliver a message confirming to Sarah and Todd to realize they are truly chosen vessels of God. 

I wept.  I have not stopped praying and crying.  My heart is full knowing they had to have all the staging and all the hype and all the crowd…but the GOD of Heaven and Earth…wanted to give them a Divine-God-Appointment! 

To God be all the GLORY and HONOR.

If anyone wants to know if I believe God can speak.  Yes…Absolutely, is my Answer!

Be praying for me…and let me know what you think about all of this.

Pastor Mark Arnold
MEA31975@aol.com

September 21, 2008

Election 2008 Prayer Guide

Filed under: Uncategorized — Michael Wright @ 3:11 pm

Recently, a friend of mine whom I’ve known since she was a little girl, Elizabeth Brown, challenged me with an open letter calling Christians to pray for our upcoming election. It seems like for years I’ve heard people talk about the awful condition of America and our world. I’m sure times might be worse now than they were a hundred years ago, it’s hard to know for sure. However, one thing I do know for sure is that God’s Word has not changed and that the same God that was in control a hundred years ago is in control today. “Jesus Christ is the same yesterday, today, and forever” (Hebrews 13:8).

I will not hide the fact that I’m a proud supporter of McCain and Palin! I wasn’t very impressed with John McCain prior to the announcement of Sara Palin as his running mate. During the past 3 weeks, I have fallen in love with Sarah Palin (don’t worry, my wife knows about this crush of mine! J). I believe Sarah has the courage and the aptitude needed to effectively serve as Vice President and even President should that be deemed necessary. Sarah is a committed Christian and a pro-life Mom and a lady whom I believe is in touch with the real world. Last Friday, the 700 Club did a special report on Sarah’s faith. You can read that report and see the video here.

Over this weekend I thought about the parallels between the opportunity Sarah Palin has engaged in and what Queen Esther faced, as recorded in the Bible. I believe God controlled the heart of John McCain and caused him to select Palin as his running mate. To me, she is like Queen Esther, “Who knows, perhaps you have come to the kingdom for such a time as this” (Esther 4:14b).

This morning in church I started multi-tasking and looking at some scripture verses that assure me that God is still in control of our political situation in 2008. I want to share just a few of those with the readers of my blog. I pray these verses encourage you as much as they did me. I also pray that they encourage you to spend time praying specifically about this upcoming election. I certainly believe Jesus Christ could return at any moment and I’m doing my best to be ready for the rapture. But, in the meantime, I want to pray for the great country of America and also those who are leading or who will be leading us for the next four years.

God controls the hearts of our leaders. Proverbs 21:1, “A king’s heart is a water channel in the LORD’s hand: He directs it wherever He chooses.” Whether the Republicans or the Democrats control the White House, we can know that God is controlling the heart of whoever is elected as President. We can begin praying now for our new President. God already knows who will win the election.

God accomplishes His purpose. Proverbs 16:4, “The LORD has prepared everything for His purpose–even the wicked for the day of disaster. ” God may choose to let America have a less than ideal leader as part of His punishment of a country that has seemingly left Him out of the picture. The NIV Study Bible has these comments about this verse: “God is sovereign in every life and in all of history. Even through wicked men God displays His power and all evil will be judged.” Let us pray that God will help us as a country to turn back to Him, His Word, and the principles our country was originally founded upon.

God helps those who commit their way to Him. Proverbs 16:1, “The reflections of the heart belong to man, but the answer of the tongue is from the LORD.” McCain and Palin both have good ideas and plans that, if elected, could really benefit this country. However, it will be God who will give them the ability to accomplish those plans (Proverbs 16:9). Let us pray that God will guide Sarah’s tongue as she debates Biden next week on October 2. This is going to be a tough debate for Sarah Palin, she mentioned this last week in an interview with Sean Hannity on Fox News. I know God can give her the right answers for the questions that will be asked of her. I pray that Sarah will keep her way committed to the Lord (Proverbs 3:5-6). The NIV Study Bible says, “Be ever mindful of God and serve him with a willing and faithful heart. He will remove the obstacles from your pathway and bring you to your appointed goal.”  

God gives grace and help to the humble. I Peter 5:5b, “God resists the proud, but gives grace to the humble.” I’m joining with Rev. Paul Riley who baptized Sarah when she was 12 years old and praying that Palin will continue to maintain a humble spirit. (“My prayer is that she will continue to be humble,” Rev. Riley said. “That she will realize that she has God who is able to help her and give her wisdom and she will not be prideful over it. God will give her wisdom” CBNNews.com.)

I’m encouraged about the future of America. I believe God is still hearing and answering the prayers of Christians across our land who are coming to Him with a humble and prayerful attitude. “We know that all things work together for the good of those who love God: those who are called according to His purpose” (Romans 8:28). Thank you, Elizabeth, for challenging Christians to spend extra time praying about this election and for our country. I’m glad you were faithful to God and thankful you wrote your open letter. May God bless you in a special way!

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