Monday, July 24, 2006
Joe & Shirley would like to invite you to visit the new Love and Fire Christian Superstore. Here you will find a comprehensive collection of Christian books, bibles, music, jewelry and giftware - all at great prices. You can browse around the store and checkout the items on offer. Also, don't forget to sign up for our free store newsletter and in the process get a free downloadable MP3 version of the Britta Adams album "Maybe Sunday"!
CLICK HERE to get to the store. You can also go to www.loveandfire.net and click on "Music & Bookstore".
May the God of All Wonders Draw You Closer to His Love and Fire!
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Thursday, July 20, 2006
"God said, 'PREPARE FOR SPONTANEOUS COMBUSTION'"
by Al Thomas
In a Vision I Saw a Man Walking Down a Street During a Violent Storm...
He had an iron wire protruding out of his heart that stretched up to the sky. Imprinted on the wire were two words: "Hungry and Frustrated."
The tip of the wire in the sky probed the Heavens for a connection. Suddenly a powerful bolt of lightning shot out of a cloud and struck the wire. An ear piercing clap of thunder followed. It was so loud, people on the street were startled. The lightning bolt traveled down the wire and the man burst into flames. I thought he was dead but he quickly composed himself, and had a look on his face that expressed "great joy and relief." He calmly looked himself over as if he were just fitted for a new suit...made of fire. He looked at his burning right palm and saw written the words, "The God of Elijah."
God says, "Glory Storms Are on the Horizon"
"I see many of My children with their antennas up, as if they were probing My Heaven with a great hunger and frustration. They have prayed for agonizingly long seasons, yet have never given up" (Revelation 2:26).
"They are about to be hit with My bolt of Glory Lightning (Revelation 4:5). Strong prophetic utterances will be on their tongues, and none of their words will fall to the ground" (1 Samuel 3:19).
"No one will see the lightning except those who have been struck, although their faces will glow brightly. Glory storms are to hover over congregations small and large. Bolt after bolt will strike My servants."
"With every lightning strike, a portion of hell will tremble (James 2:19), and a piece of Heaven will descend (Matthew 6:10). Put your antenna up..."
God says, "Lightning Bolts of Glory Will Awaken Seemingly Dormant Ministries"
"Some small ministries that seemed to lay dormant in the ground, will quickly take off like a sprinter in a race (Psalms 19:5). Discouraged leaders will be amazed at the quick fruit that is reaped, contacts made, and the influence they suddenly have. For the first time in many years they will feel electrified because they will get a glory shock from Me."
"For most, it will be so unexpected, that no anticipation will be felt before they are struck with My power. It will truly be a 'suddenly' (Acts 2:2). As quickly as I knocked Paul off his horse (Acts 9:3-4), this Heavenly lightning will knock others back on theirs, and they will gallop back into the battle (Jeremiah 46:3-4). This time they will run hard like mighty men and never get tired (Joel 2:7). Mount up...."
God says, "Look for Many to Experience Spontaneous Combustion"
"Others will be walking down the street, bursting into a glory flame, and 'out of the blue' start testifying to the lost. My blaze of glory will erupt within many, and although it will not be seen completely by everyone, all will notice one thing--the brilliant flash of an angelic countenance (Acts 6:15). Some will even mistake them for angels (Hebrews 13:2); others will call it 'The Glow,' because a supernatural radiance will beam from the person's face."
"Have not intercessors cried out for My glory to be manifested? (Habakkuk 2:14). It is almost time for the latter rain (Haggai 2:9) and My glory clouds are forming. Just before My rain comes, many will be struck with a glory bolt from above or spontaneously erupt into a blaze of glory.""Be ready to give an answer when you erupt into flames (2 Timothy 4:2). Put your lightning rod up, My glory is about to strike...and no earthly fire department will be able to quench it."
"And of the His angels He says, 'Who makes His angels winds, and His ministers a flame of fire" Hebrews 1:7.
Celebrating His Life Ministries
"The Divine Exchange Between Heaven and Earth--A New Sound Is Being Released"
by JoAnn McFatter
There is at all times, a sound being released from earth to Heaven, as well as from Heaven to earth--a divine exchange, so to speak. In the unseen realm, it is in the form of energy patterns, waves, particles. Although the vast majority of it is not heard with our natural ear, it is sensed by us because we are part of this existence.
What is coming from our end is "heard" by God, and I believe that He has an ever-flowing response back to us, which we need to be aware of and "tune into" with our spirit man, so as to tap into that constant communion we can have with Him. We often refer to it, as does Scripture, "spirit to spirit, deep to deep." In John 17, Jesus prays concerning our oneness with Him, "...that they may be one just as We are one: I in them, and you in Me."
Regardless of whether we are conscious of it or not, without that constant exchange, this world as we know it, would not even exist..."in Him all things consist."
In the Beginning Was the Word
When God set up this whole existence of ours, He put it all in motion with the release of His sound, His Word, "Let there be Light."
"In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was in the beginning with God. All things were made through Him, and without Him nothing was made that was made. In Him was life, and the life was the light of men. And the light shines in the darkness, and the darkness did not comprehend (overcome) it." John 1:1-5
Science is just now catching up with the Word, but what they are discovering these days, especially in the quantum world of physics, is absolutely amazing as it pertains to Scripture.
He released His sound...His Word out of Eternity. All we have experienced, all we do experience, and all we will experience, is held together by His Word. Science calls it the zero energy point, which is at the very center of the smallest particle. It is what keeps everything from collapsing all around us. Jesus is the fleshly Manifestation of that Word--He IS the Word.
In Him All Things Consist
"He is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn over all creation. For by Him all things were created that are in Heaven and that are on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or dominions or principalities or powers. All things were created through Him and for Him. And He is before all things, and in Him all things consist." Colossians 1:15-17
It is all held together by Him, again, "...and in Him all things consist." I had to look up the word "consist." I've heard this passage misquoted many times. I, myself, have misquoted this passage because of the way I've heard it said so often as "all things exist," rather than "consist." I looked up the word "consist" because the Holy Spirit used that word specifically, and the misquote drew my attention to it. The word consist means, "To be made up or composed, to be comprised or contained, to exist together or be capable of existing together." I found this very interesting--all of this is made capable of existing together only in Him.
A Sound of Breakthrough
There is a sound of BREAKTHROUGH being released from Heaven in this hour that I believe can even be activated by our sounds of worship mixed with the sound of faith here on the earth. Our agreement with Heaven's agenda will truly affect the outcome.
It may be strange to hear the phrase, "the sound of faith" or "the sound of good works," but energy that is released from these things really does have a sound. Worship is a sound, whether it be audible or inaudible to our natural ear, flowing from us to the Father. When we direct our hearts, our intent toward Him, even when we don't verbalize it, there are waves and/or vibrations that are released into the atmosphere that He sees, smells, hears, tastes--that He receives unto Himself.
Obviously, Scripture uses metaphor to describe the exchange between God and His creation--"Taste and see that the Lord is good." Our prayers are as an incense unto Him and He "fills His nostrils" with it. There are so many examples. But if you were to really look at what is happening at a subatomic level, that unseen realm, our words and sounds are releasing energy into the atmosphere that everything around us is affected by.
See and Smell the Spirit Realm
I am reminded of something Neville Johnson (a father to the body of Christ in matters of the Spirit) shared in a teaching session. He went through a period of time, I believe several months, where the Lord caused him to see and smell the spirit realm--particularly, the realm of emotions. He actually saw the colors and smelled the fragrance that was released from people as they entertained emotions.
If a person was angry he saw red coming from them with a foul scent accompanying it. Jealousy in a person released a greenish grey color, again with a particular foul smell. The most fowl scent of all came with self-pity. Demons would see and smell it and flock to the person to fuel the emotion. It worked as well on the flip side of that.
Positive emotions released particular colors and pleasant fragrances, causing angels to come. My point is that we see, hear, and sense only in part what is taking place in the unseen realm. Actually, Neville begged God to "turn it off" because it was driving him crazy to be constantly aware of all of this. God is constantly aware of all of this, and even more, in all of creation at all times.
John Paul's Heavenly Visitation
I remember John Paul Jackson shared an experience he had in Heaven during a visitation. He said every fiber of his being was illuminated as if it were alive, and he was conscious of how everything in his body was connected--even things science and the medical field are not yet aware of.
In his thoughts, he knew that God was that aware of every aspect of creation at all times--every blade of grass, every particle of every atom, as well as every creature, every human on the earth--not to mention the things of Heaven. What we say and what we do, does not go unnoticed by God. Every intent of our heart, every action, every word, every song, it's all "breathed in," so to speak, by God.
John Paul went on to say that when a word was released in Heaven, with it came music, fragrance, a color of light, and a numerical equation. I was undone by this statement, as I had been studying physics, light, sound, and color for a couple of years, and at that point, I wasn't even sure why.
I would go to the book store, stand in front of the science section and throw my arms up to God, saying "What?! What am I doing here?!" Then a couple of titles would catch my eye, and I would buy the books, go home, and try to read them. Well, when John Paul mentioned the numerical equation with each word I just started sobbing. That's what physics is all about--mathematical equations!
My heart was so relieved, thinking, "This is You, God. You really are behind this!" Many of you have that same sigh of relief, "I'm not going crazy after all, and I am hearing God on all of this." I can't tell you how many people have said the same thing to me in the last few years--God is up to something!
Spirit to spirit Understanding
Something's up in the Spirit and it's a spirit to spirit understanding He is giving us in this hour. Things have escalated drastically and there is a divine acceleration going on. I liken it to an earthquake. If you were to say that the end of time as we know, is at the epicenter of the quake, then the closer we get to it, the stronger and faster the ripples will be that pull us toward it.
God is going to be releasing understanding at a greater pace. We are going to be much more acclimated to the unseen realm, and I believe we will be more able to sense and discern what is happening as a result of our actions and our words. We will see and hear more clearly His response and Heaven's response, as we become more skilled in the ways of the spirit and the unseen realm.
I am setting the stage to move into some explanation of just how our words, our actions, our worship affect the unseen realm. The church is finally exploring that which was meant for us as believers from the beginning of time. We lost the understanding of His ways as we trusted more and more in the thoughts and ways of man...the opinions and traditional ways of thinking in Greek-based philosophy.
We need to begin to pray and ask for the fullness of God to be released in our spirits, that we might be enlightened to the way He meant for us to walk with Him even on this earth. He said He would have those who worship Him in spirit and in truth.
Worship Is Key in the Releasing
There really is something on the horizon in the not so very distant future. Worship will be key in releasing much of this. It will be used to change the atmosphere for the Light to penetrate the darkness "and the darkness will not comprehend (overcome) it."
As He is lifted up, He will draw all men unto Him. God is unlocking mysteries and allowing us to peer into things we've not understood until now.
There is a line in a song that He gave me that goes, "Breaking the sound barrier, breaking the barrier of sound between Heaven and the ground." We've got to get in touch with the power of our words and, yes, even the intent of our hearts. As we align ourselves with the "Sound of Heaven," these things will begin to manifest on the earth.
Thursday, July 06, 2006
Jesus' walk was neither painless nor effortless, and yours will not be either. Perhaps our minds cannot envision the Son of God facing any "real problems," such as we face. We know He calmed the sea, but we are also told He "learned obedience through the things which He suffered" (Hebrews 5:8). Yes, power surged from Him causing those who came to arrest Him to fall back (John 18:6), but He also had times He was wearied (John 4:6). He indeed promised us peace, but He too had times when He was distressed (Luke 12:49-50), angered (Mark 3:5) and troubled (John 12:27). The same beautiful feet that proclaimed the glad tidings, that walked on water, walked the Via Dolorosa, the way of suffering.
When we consider the Son of God, we should not isolate Him from the extreme spiritual warfare He faced on many occasions, even to the point of sweating blood. We are assured that Christ never failed, but neither was He aloof from temptations. Rather, the Bible tells us that Jesus was "tempted in all things as we are, yet without sin" (Hebrews 4:15). Remember also, Jesus faced and conquered His battles as a man; He had to pray for strength, and trust His Father for justice on the cross, even when He felt forsaken by all.
I am utterly positive the highest percentage of Jesus' life was filled with joy and peace; why else would multitudes be drawn to Him? But it is interesting that some of these very people, when questioned, thought He might be a return of "Elijah or Jeremiah," both of whom were more known as intensely passionate than compassionate (Matthew 16:13-14). And don't forget, the same hands that touched and healed the untouchables, twice fashioned a scourge and drove money changers out of the temple.
I am trying to balance our image of Christ. For if we imagine that Jesus was without temptation or that He never had inner conflicts, such thinking blinds us from seeing the reality of what we all must go through at times. We think God is failing us when, in fact, He is actually conforming us to the real Jesus. Yes, in the crucible of conflict, Jesus chose to do God's will. "Deeply grieved, to the point of death" (Matthew 26:38), He prayed the prayer of surrender: "not My will, but Thine be done" (Luke 22:42).
Dear friends, there will be times when to obey God's will we must fight our very instincts for survival. Plan on it; there will be seasons when you will hurt terribly or be deeply troubled inside, perhaps even facing severe depression, yet to fulfill God's will you cannot excuse yourself because of heartsickness. In utter defiance of your own feelings, you will have to say "Yes" to God. It is at this juncture, beloved, that true spiritual progress is being made.
Through Fire and Water"
But now, thus says the LORD, your Creator, O Jacob, and He who formed you, O Israel, do not fear, for I have redeemed you; I have called you by name; you are Mine! When you pass through the waters, I will be with you; and through the rivers, they will not overflow you. When you walk through the fire, you will not be scorched, not will the flame burn you" (Isaiah 43:1-2).
Fire? Rivers? What about heaven? Yes, you are going to heaven. In fact, if you are a true Christian, you are in heaven right now only you don't know it. But, there are times when life, like a river, is over your head and you feel like you are drowning. Yet, the water from these very rivers wash away your filth. What the water does not remove, the fire purifies.
It is one thing to repent of sin; another, to be placed in life's furnace and be forced beyond yourself to trust God. In the first case, God works through our willingness to engage and submit; He deals with what we have done. In the second situation, He goes much deeper and deals with what we actually are. When He deals only with our sin, He requires we humble ourselves; when we are in the fire, He kills what we were, and then humbles our enemies.
Yes, you will pass through rivers, but the Lord promises that the waters will not overflow us! He leads us into fire, but then appears in the blaze with us, as He did with the three Hebrews (Daniel 3). When our ordeal is over, only the bonds that once enslaved us are consumed; we are unscathed.
The Holy Spirit and Fire
As Christians, we are fascinated by the Holy Spirit. He teaches, guides, gives gifts, brings forth fruit and comforts us on our journey. However, one aspect that is rarely discussed is the baptism of fire. John said that Christ would "baptize . . . with the Holy Spirit and fire"(Matthew 3:11).
Peter tells us we should not be "surprised at the fiery ordeal . . . which comes upon you for your testing, as though some strange thing were happening to you" (1 Peter 4:12). Jesus said, "Everyone will be salted with fire" (Mark 9:49).
The church in America for too long has followed Casper, the friendly ghost instead of seeking the fire of the Holy Ghost. We have turned limp at the thought of our own cross; we faint when we think of suffering or sacrifice. Beloved, it is time to embrace the fire of God's presence. It is the fire that purifies our sacrifice.
Ahead of us are days both great and terrible. Understandably, many Christians are looking to the rapture of the church. Yet, to escape God's judgment is not to escape His fire. Consider: Paul wrote that the "day" of the Lord "is to be revealed with fire." He said that "the fire itself will test the quality of each man's work"(1 Corinthians 3:13).
Yet, let us stay encouraged, for our God is a consuming fire. He is coming to baptize His church again in fire, but in the fire is the place of intimacy, of power and of deliverance. Even as the prophet Isaiah wrote:
"When the Lord has washed away the filth of the daughters of Zion, and purged the bloodshed of Jerusalem from her midst, by the spirit of judgment and the spirit of burning, then the Lord will create over the whole area of Mount Zion and over her assemblies a cloud by day, even smoke, and the brightness of a flaming fire by night; for over all the glory will be a canopy. And there will be a shelter to give shade from the heat by day, and refuge and protection from the storm and the rain" (Isaiah 4:4-6).
Yes, our God is a consuming fire and our walk with Him is a firewalk.
Lord, I repent for wanting Your blessings without desiring Your fire. I ask for the fire that purifies, that burns away my old nature. I ask You to fill me with the fire of Your holiness. Make me one with You in the fire of Your passions. Amen.