Sunday, January 18, 2009

Great Shaking and Awakening by Robert Ricciardelli

The shaking and dismantling continues around the world’s systems, within the church systems, and within each of us. False foundations exposed brings opportunity for godly foundations to be established. I just got back from the annual Charismatic Round Table held at the offices of Strang Communications in Orlando. This continues to be a valuable dialogue, and I am thankful for Steve Strang, Lee Grady, and Strang Communications for their obedience in hosting this venue each year. 75 church and ministry leaders gathered to understand more fully where we are, what we are doing, and especially what must we do going forward, to improve and give God glory in this segment of His church in America. There were various discussions surrounding several topics, and hopefully all of us came away with some possible solutions as we go forward.

This pondering came forth as I reflected, as well as looked ahead to the opportunities before us. This year culminated similar to the trend of recent years, yet with more shock and awe to those not discerning the times. It was another year of God exposing us to us. Exposing the weaknesses in our systems and methods of trying to touch Him, and trying to touch the world around us. We seem to continue to lower our standards in valuing character and integrity, especially in those who lead. Many have fallen into experiential leading of self-agenda’s, comical methods, and frenzied impressions of His presence. Nobody is laughing any longer, these are serious times, and it demands a people who know the wealth we carry in us, and the God who designed us for so much more.

There is no question that much of this has come through hunger for the real thing, so I thank God for that hunger in those seeking His presence. For those who worship Him in Spirit and in Truth, He is a loving God that answers them regardless of the chaotic environment in which they may find themselves. We saw some of that again this year as well. The good news is that many are hungry. The bad news is that some are hungry enough to manufacture a filling for their desires. We are created in His image, and so we do have the ability to create. When we create outside of His heart, His leading, and His character, we can sure make a mess of things.

Thank God for grace, but we are living in the days of toleration for leaders regardless of their personal character or integrity. In pursuing what seems to be His glory, many may drop their guard and engage, rather than having full disclosure as to who is leading, what are they doing, and where is this all going? Many have neither matured towards rightfully discerning God’s truth, or they have chosen to shut down discernment for their own agenda’s or desires. When the mess comes the leaders may try and present a silver lining in the chaos, or utilize spin-filled reasoning for the lack of sound judgment. Finally, it sometimes sadly comes down to the fact that they just don’t care what happens as long as somebody got touched for good. There are those in the world, and even among us that may be more likely to trust a bartender than a Christian leader, and that is truly sad. I apologize to the bartenders in advance for comparing them to these types of leaders.

Many are questioning the established church because of its failures, and inability to impact the people and communities we live in. They are wondering why it just is not working. There are so many expressions of Christianity, and so many that are missing plumb-line truth, that it leaves one confused as to what Christianity really is. I am often compelled to give a more complete answer now when I am asked if I am a Christian. Here is my current response, “I am a follower of Jesus Christ, and the ways of His eternal Kingdom”.

Expressions and labels are inadequate of themselves in communicating and bringing forth the power of who we really are. We are Christ to the world and our identity must be in Him, and through Him. Our identity must be in the person of Jesus and not in a label—whether it is what others have given us, or one we have given ourselves. Denominations and church gatherings of all types are vehicles of directing us towards Him, but we will come to a powerless halt when we look to them, rather then the Father and His Eternal Son. It is not about the structure, but He will shape the environment and the community as we seek Him first.

“The shaking we are experiencing today is a move of God, who wants to live and move and have His being through His people. He wants to change the world through us!”

God is bearing down upon established systems of men, whether it is government institutions, or institutional churches. I must include organic gatherings too, because humanity often has it’s grip in those gatherings as well. He is truly shaking all things so that all that we can look to for security is Him. He is making it clear that He is a jealous God, jealous for our love, our affection, and our very lives. During this season, He is giving us a tremendous opportunity to go a better way, to walk in His eternal ways, and to love in His supernatural and transforming love.

Because we have continued to make the wrong things the main things, He is bringing us towards simplification of the one and only truth, It’s ALL ABOUT HIM. We have relied on systems and it was never about the systems. We have relied on Government systems and Jesus paid very little attention to Caesar and made it clear that Caesar was only to be given that which was his. Certainly we were not to entrust ourselves to these systems and governments, nor relying on them for sustenance that can only come from Him.

He did not want us to look too intently on our church structures, because at best they were inadequate in light of whom He is. This is not to diminish our need for gathering with one another, or making sure we engage with those that God has ordained as teachers and nurturers of our soul. He wants our identity and focused attention on Him and not on the peripherals of this world. His original intent was not for religion, though He has used it, but His original design was for a people freely willing to be called unto Himself.

We are seeing so many looking here and there, for “this” and “that”, while expecting the deceptive “this” and “that” to be the keys in finding Him. Father is desires for us come to Him so He can show us this, that, and the next thing He has for us. If you are spiritually unsatisfied, don’t remove yourself from your faith community to search after a better one, seek Him first and He will point you to all the right places and all the right faces. We do not want to continue to be looking for love in all the wrong places. Don’t expect that by moving from one system to the next, you are going to find what you are looking for. Father knows best, ask Him what you must do.

The Lord is bringing a mighty shaking to man-made religious, government, and various other structures in this hour. He is beckoning us to be free. He does not want anyone or anything to interfere with His personal guidance for each one of His children.

In other words, He desires for us to be in the world, but not of it. Our divine priority is not to so much in establishing organizations that grow, but to establish people who grow in relationship with Him, and each other, while pursuing Christ-likeness.

I like the way The Message describes the shaking we are experiencing: “‘One last shaking, from top to bottom, stem to stern.’ The phrase ‘one last shaking’ means ‘a thorough housecleaning, getting rid of all the historical and religious junk so that the unshakable essentials stand clear and uncluttered’” (Heb. 12:26-27).

We have seen various movements and church systems come and go through the years, and many have been ineffective in producing lasting spiritual fruit that releases people into God’s directive destiny. We have institutions that have done little to impart to, empower, or release God’s people so that we can have genuine impact for the kingdom of God.

None of these organizations are necessarily wrong, but often they point to men or methods rather than releasing them to hear from the Father themselves. Scripture led controls under the descriptions of protection, covering, and obedience; often enslave those whom Christ has set free.

These organizations often become destiny stealers rather than destiny enablers. They captivate people within the four walls of a building instead of empowering them for service in the harvest fields of everyday life. Deception, fear and unhealthy authority structures often pull people into man-centered movements that fulfill the leader’s agenda.

When we become free from systematic controls and false “coverings,” Jesus can rule and reign within us and guide us into all truth. We will continue to chase experience, chills, and frills, in substitution of the real thing, until we decide to use our brains, common sense, and at least an ounce of discernment. A friend of mine recently made a profound comment to what we are seeing, “We have taken a quart of His Spirit, and three quarts of humanity, and called it a gallon of God.”

In the last 25 years in every county in America, the growth of Christianity has decreased per capita. That does not sound like the overcoming church in which the gates of hell cannot prevail against. Thus the shaking and awakening from a loving Father who sees His potential in us that we have yet to realize.

CLARIFICATION:
Please do not misunderstand me; this is not a call to leave a system or institution to another form, but a calling forth of a revolutionary people that will not settle for what was, or even what is, but to engage in more of what the Father wants. His desire is for more relating with Him personally, outside of our larger gatherings, while going to another level in relating and loving one another within them. As we live as His disciples, we can then take His love and presence into the marketplace and into every fabric of society the Lord has released us into. Let’s kick our unfruitful habits to the curb, while allowing His presence and His nature to abound.

The shaking we are experiencing today is a move of God, who wants to live and move and have His being through His people. He wants to disciple and transform nations through us! He is working a divine exchange by demanding His plans to prevail over ours.

Proverbs 19:21 “Many are the plans in a man's heart... but it is the Lord's purpose that prevails."


Jesus said, “‘My sheep hear My voice and I know them, and they follow Me’”.
If we listen to His voice, it doesn’t matter what denomination or structure of community we belong to. It is not about a system; it is about Him.

The rumbling we hear will continue until revelation of Him increases in order for us to walk powerfully in the reality of His purposes for each of us. As we yield our will for His, He will empower us to present His supernatural Kingdom to the world. His power and love will pour out of us as we allow Him to use us to bring about His purposes. Let us now choose to embrace the shaking, examine ourselves, and shake more of the flesh away to reveal His Spirit.

Father, may we bring you glory in the freedom we have in you, and in your ways. Shake us and wake us towards your Kingdom and your truth. Help us to live in moment-to-moment reality of your presence, and your better way, in Jesus name.

12 comments:

  1. It truly is a time of repentance and seeking the face of the Lord. God will bless the diligent and those that line up their lives with the Word of God, but there comes a time of self-examination and dying to self first, this has almost become a lost teaching in our Charismatic/Pentecostal services. But Praise to God there is a remnant of people from all nations, and tongues, and races that are hungry for a real manifestation of God upon their lives and in the midst of their church services. The Lord is raising up an army prepared for the last days outpouring of the Spirit of God. It is our duty to choose to seek His face during this time of shaking that we may be a prepared people ready to go forward with the gospel of God to a world that is increasingly heading for destruction.

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  2. Tony Roland tr@powerblue.us18 January, 2009

    Robert,
    I am grateful for the platform the Lord has given you to speak to the issues of the day.We like you are looking for God's voice amidst all this shaking. The things we see removed are for the good, the Lord has given us space to repent of our foolishness, and unfortunately when have not found the ways to separate us from ourselves.
    But Lord is faithful so the foolishness is being cleaned out. So His eternal Kingdom can be constructed. The Holy Spirit is Nehemiah quietly sifting through the rubble to see what He has to work with. Let's pray He will count us worthy to be built into this new house a habitation for the Lord.

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  3. Finally others are beginning to see the BIG picture! I have written and spoken publicly about these very issues for the past few years, (http://www.theuprisingtulsa.org/oneheartnext.html) only for my words to fall upon deaf ears. In some cases I was practically stoned to death for bring these things into the light and was accused of all sorts of things. We must begin to put our emphasis back on the fruit of the Spirit instead of casting them aside to persue the gifts. Preaching and teaching about putting on the character and integrity of Christ is not popular compared to the glam, bling and hype of the next great miracle meeting, but it produces deep roots that are well grounded in truth. Unfortunately over the years, the Charismatic Church has produced a generation of self ambitious and spiritually ignorant babes that are only able to drink milk. They are unskilled in handling the Word of Righteousness and have not exercised their senses to discern both good and evil. It is time for us to begin eating solid food and to discern the age we are in. We are at the end of the age and the whole earth is groaning! So God is taking us to the water's edge in order to determine His remnant as He did with Gideon's army and He will weed out those who are lukewarm as well as those who are not obeying His commands. He will first judge the house of God and bring the Church back to the fear of the Lord as in the days of Ananias and Sapphira. We must stay bowed down before Jesus and decrease to our way so that He can increase. He wants us to look like a cross to a hurting and dying world that is drowning in its iniquities.

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  4. I find myself unable to sleep tonight, and came and found this message on the shaking. It's funny, whenever, I hear these messages, I always find that I'm the one shaken, and usually, shaken out of the group of believers. Yet, have prayed much, waited upon God much, determined to know Him and His word. But find myself, washed up and pretty useless.

    After praying for hours and hours a day, Americans would come to our church services. One youngster ran out. I jumped down from the platform, and caught him about a hundred yards down the road. He had torn all the buttons from his shirt. Satan was clearly in his eyes and tongue, but he would not allow me to minister to him. There were things that he would simply not release. Came from the very worst background imaginable. Personally had never heard such abuse in Africa. The pits of hell, here in the Bible Belt.

    I saw people run out fo the building, retching at the front door.

    Found out that a woman wanted to come to the church, but could not bring herself to enter the building. While she had a desire for God, there were also things that she would not let go of. The same with several men: Wanted a relationship with God on the one hand, but as it would mean telling the truth to the government and probably losing the social welfare claims, could not make the decision.

    Teenagers were really drawn to the church, but the parents would prohibit them attending because, "[We] were not Baptist!" It was painful to watch the girls destroy their lives with booze, sex and drugs. One of these girls that was prohibited from attending our services was stabbed and killed by a so-called friend, in some drunken argument. One man rushed into the church service, and proceeded to slap his son, telling him to go home. I spoke to the father about a man striking a prophet of God and losing his arm. Two weeks later, he fell off of a motor cycle and broke his arm. He told me, “I should never have struck my son like that in the church”.

    One man was twitching - arms, face and body during praise and worship. He got up to leave. Again, I jumped off the platform and ran after him, catching him at the outer door of the building. Upon my enquiry, he said, "I can't handle the praise and worship. I have to get outta here!" He permitted me to pray for him. I raised my hand saying, "Father, .." That's as far as I could get. He dropped to the ground with convulsions on the floor. Eyes rolled back and just the bottom whites of the eyes showing. He came to, asking, “What happened?” I asked, “Were you involved in the occult?” Admitting that he had, I told him that God had just released him from a satanic spirit, and that he was to go and sin no more. While he wanted to return to our meetings, his wife would not permit him, hating the praise and worship. I saw that it was easier to set someone free from ‘devil worship’ than to set someone free from religious Christianity. Jesus encountered the same problem. A demon infested man living among the tombs was far easier to set free than the religious Pharisees. There’s my problem. I find demon-denying Americans are mostly as Pharisees, Sadducees, lawyers and Scribes. Thinking they have the presence of God in their meetings, they are mostly totally unaware of Ichabod.

    Organizing Combined Church Celebrations, encouraging thee local pastors who would participate to pray through the weekend through Prayer Watches. The presence of God was so powerful in the meetings, none of us knew how to respond. I blew it at least twice myself. Pastors who were involved near the days of the beginning of Pentecost said the presence of God was far more tangible than they could ever recall it. Yet, there was no interest to draw closer. Oh! Don’t get me wrong. There was plenty of talk about how “we desired the presence of God”. Yet no-one was really willing to seek God’s face earnestly.

    I grew weary. Things became out of hand. Discouraged and disillusioned with American Christianity, and utterly powerless to do anything about it, came to wander regarding the words of Jesus as not being able to do any mighty works through all the surrounding unbelief. Mostly from people who claimed to know God.

    Have attempted to attend other churches, but find pastors in diapers leading the congregations with Corporate company skills. Christians no longer have even heard of the elementary doctrines. They do not know anything about real faith towards God. God told me very clearly, “Ivan, I gave Mt people faith that they might seek Me and My ways and be conformed into the image of My Son, but they take my faith to accumulate the things of the world which I hate!”

    I America I’ve wandered which was worse, “To be stuck in the mud of African poverty or to wallow in the Pig-pen of American prosperity. None appear to be too concerned. All are right in their own eyes, to where Barna now says that one third of Christians do not believe that the Lord Jesus Christ was sinless. This means that these Christians have no concept of the Sacrifice being without spot or blemish. They think of Jesus as being the founder of Christianity, without the vaguest idea that He is the Lamb of God Who was slain from the foundation of the world. There is hardly a Christian who even understands what that term - the foundation fo the world - really means. Without a sinless Christ, there is no CHRIST in CHRIST-ian. Hence, no Christian. Christianity is thought of in terms of religion rather than relationship, even by people who claim they are in relationship. I find Christians in the Bible Belt walk with a very human Jesus, just as the disciples of old walked with Jesus, only seeing and hearing Him through natural eyes and ears. They fail to perceive a resurrected Lord. Paul was able to better perceive the resurrected LORD. Now that is what the Christians most need to see now, “The Resurrected LORD Jesus Christ.” Do you know why I capitalize the word ‘LORD’? What is the significance of such. Especially as you consider the SHAKING?

    I’ve walked with God experiencing first hand repeated Book of Acts experiences, and do you know what I’ve found? The more senior the pastor, the less the dude wants me around. Yet, Senior Pastor, Senior Prophet, Senior Apostle, has no concept of what God has allowed me to experience walking with Him. Most Americans don’t even know what I’m talking about. And so I suffer! Mostly have kept all this to myself. My wife knows a little, but even she doesn’t know the degree I speak of. It’s one lonely walk.

    American Christians hand the country over to the worst people to lead, saying things like, “That is Caesars.....” Then they besiege themselves behind the four walls of a building they call church. Extremely isolated from one another for not even ‘church’ is about fellowship anymore. It’s more about attending a monologue in one form or another. We can’t speak Jesus. We can’t talk politics. We are going to heaven. Who cares how the country is governed. Christians send their children to the dragon fires called public education where their brains are fried to become brain-dead in the matters of God, and it is as if they do not care. All because they chase after worldly success and prosperity. Let me tell you, the very people you allow in leadership, be it in the churches, the schools, colleges, universities, the political and judicial arena, are the very ones who are molding and shaping your heritage - your children! While you are off to heaven, they are left in this world, this nation, this country that God has entrusted to each and every one of us. Don’t you care for your children?

    What kind of people are you all?

    Consider a woman. That entity that is supposed to have been created to bring forth life, nurture and protect it. Yet, this ‘thing’ is the one demanding the right to kill, to murder that life before it even has a chance. Surely it is an insult to all this entity a woman! What has become of the country when this entity that was created to protect, is the very entity that will kill with hardly a whimper of a conscience?

    Isaiah rightly wrote, “The head is sick!”

    I feel sick at what I’ve had to behold.

    I’ve totally lost it, not really being able to cope. It is quite honestly, all just a little too much for me! Does anyone care? Or is it only about the standard of integrity you all establish for yourselves? The standard of worldly education? Where does Phineas belong in this church world?

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  5. Robert,

    You managed to capture the heart and the voice of the times in a call to repentance and humility. Thank you for stepping out and risking the arrows that fly from those who have not seen the fire that refines and burns away the chaff. The reality of today is the journey into the depth of love we are supposed to be known for.

    This past week I was working on my book and wrote this phrase "The point in not the miracles...it remains our opportunity to love like He did and He continues to despite our efforts." Coming from both sides there is a refining fire that brings the purity of hearts and passions to the surface. Those he loves he chastens to the matter of heart at hand.

    I applaud your voice and truth and stand with you in this agreement that there is more to our gospel and more to our savior than the renditions we have reduced him to. I have written many articles on the prostitution of the romance. Unadulterated love is transparent and draws a longing that cannot be fabricated.

    This is the higher standard that we are to heed. Nevertheless, I pray for a love that covers a multitude of sins that is found again in our midst. If we so have received freely may our gift be to give even the unwarranted grace and mercy that the goodness of God would lead all to repentance.

    My greatest joy this past week was in seeing a young lady so excited at a death rock concert about the love of God and his care for her that she shared with the church societal outcasts around her, those that I see are looking for the real deal. They didn't dare grace a church, but when love was offered they embraced the good news that was offered for where they found safety. I do belive it is time to shine as a city on a hill. Our light belongs in the darkness and our purity must be able to withstand the onlsught of those who cannot see and the masses that cannot hear.

    Thank you for your heart,
    Lissa McKinney

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  6. Now all those comments you have made are very apt and really confirm what the Lord has been saying to me personally! In a nutshell it, "Is all about HIM"! It has nothing to do with me, my agenda, even my own limited thoughts or what I did or am going to do etc. etc. etc. Thank God! For I am relieved indeed that it is truly all about Him, His ability, His love, His plans, His heart, His vision, His wisdom,etc etc etc....
    One begins to learn this after an extended time of trials, shaking, rocking, pressures, etc etc, but it does not come easily since we have received many years of worldly brainwashing, "Too look good and stand on our own two feet" if you know what I mean?
    My my my but our sweet and wonderful Lord has so much freedom & good in store for each one of us! I'm so glad that He does not leave us to our own devises! To Him be all the Glory!!!

    And good on you for writing about it!
    Kate Harris

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  7. Robert,
    Thanks for these words. My heart is so encouraged to hear leaders like you cutting through all the hype and the ministry to lovingly evaluate where we actually are. My own heart cries for reality in the church and we wil not come to authentic reality unless we perform this kind of honest examination.

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  8. The Old World method of measuring human value was,
    and still is, by the collective - the group. Whether tribe,
    clan, city-state, race, color, ethnic, or gender, the Old
    World, ancient and modern, measures by the plural
    unit. Individuals had and have no value of them-
    selves but only as they were and are part of a
    collective. Only numbers counted!

    When Y'shua Jesus died on the cross, the veil of
    the Temple at the Holy of Holies parted from the
    top down. -> Matthew 27:51 Mark 15:38 Luke 23:45 KJV <-
    The individual believer in the congregation had, for
    the first time, a face-to-face, one-on-one relation with
    his/her Creator. Until then, there was no individual
    valid option to collectivist human value measuring
    systems. (Only the High Priest entered the Holy of Holies
    in behalf of all Israel, and even then, only once a year.)

    The Creator, Himself, had validated each individual
    person for the first time.Thus, the Individual became
    the cornerstone for later human value measuring
    systems: socio-political, philosophical, protestantism,
    educational, economic, etc., henceforth and forever. (Not individualISM.)

    Western Civilization, America, English Law, civil
    Rights, the 'democratic' process, representative
    government, etc., all sprang from that single event.
    (Greco-Roman 'democracies' were 95% slave through-
    out their entire histories.) Biblical principles are still
    today the foundation under Western Civilization and
    the American way of life.

    Many social systems attempt to borrow ideas of
    "democracy" without the basic premise in The Indi-
    vidual. Such a system is only superficially and
    temporarily 'democratic.' The cornerstone of the
    democratic process is The Individual and the
    cornerstone of the value of The Individual is
    Y'shua Jesus! It is not possible to have one with-
    out the other. There is only One Source - there is
    no other.

    It is additionally interesting to note that all
    value measuring systems are based on the single
    definitive unit of the system. Ex: Number, Time,
    Distance, Weight, Heat, Money, Angle, Volume, etc.

    Only humanism makes the abusive error of measuring
    human value by the plural unit and attempts to
    build social structures, relations, and institutions
    thereon. Such man-made systems can only be
    abusive and oppressive because in reality there
    are only individual persons. Groups or collectives
    are merely convenient verbalizations about indi-
    viduals. They are not reality.

    I have yet to see a 'group.' All I have ever seen
    are individuals. Have you ever seen a group - or is
    it a verbal convenience? Reality is only in the
    individual person. And, such a validation never
    derived from a human source without the initiative
    of the Creator. (The French Rationalists of the
    18th Century favored the fruit - but rejected the
    branch, tree, and root.)

    Today, wherever Y'shua Jesus is rejected, the
    group or collective is still the basic way of
    measuring human value - and/or human non-value.
    Individual value is the only solution to collectivism;
    - slavery or any other plural form.

    We thank the Lord God for revealing His validation
    of each individual person. We thank Him for creat-
    ing each person uniquely, in His image, and call-
    ing each one to a courageous ascension by Y'shua
    Jesus, who said, "I AM the Way..."

    Praise the God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob, and
    His Son of Man, Y'shua Jesus.

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  9. Great word and gentle spirit!

    Blessings,
    Ray Ashmore

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  10. INDIVIDUAL VALUE or Collective non-value

    Carl V. "Sam" Lamb and I served side-by-side as rifle-squad
    leaders Fox Company, "Chesty" Puller's 1st Marines, 1st Marine
    Division. He wrote a book about our experiences in the Korean
    conflict, 1950-1951. He included my remarks about an incident in
    which one of our people threatened to punch-out a fellow squad-
    leader who had black skin.

    + + +

    THE LAST PARADE
    by Carl V. Lamb Page 296 (1951)

    James Fletcher Baxter

    Sam and I had a lot in common. We both resisted evil. After I
    got out of the hospital, 'Big Jim' Causey told of driving along
    in his police cruiser and hitting a black man in his head
    with his pistol. He thought it was funny how the guy sprawled
    into the street. When he made this comment we were in a card
    game. I didn't say anything, but then he said he was going to
    kick the ____ out of Joe Goggins and I had heard enough.

    I said, "If you're going to try that, you'll have to go through
    me to get to him. I'm willing to give my life for a country
    that values each individual. If that isn't true, I don't want
    to fight for that country - but, it is true, so I'm not going
    to let you rob me of the very good reason I may lose my life
    tomorrow or next week. If you attack him, you attack me. I
    may lose, but I guarantee I will make it very expensive for
    you to get to him. Let me know what you decide."

    He got up from our card game and said, "I'll have to think
    about it."

    I said, "Let me know. I'll be here."

    He came back a little later and said, "You're right. I was
    wrong." I thanked him for his manliness.

    Joe Goggins came to me later and thanked me. He had wet eyes.

    + + +

    (1/07/09)
    Shortly after the above event, Causey was sent home on a
    medical emergency for a family member. On the way, he
    made a stop at a Naval medical facility stateside and ran into
    my brother, Sgt. Howard "Barney" Baxter, 5th Marines, with
    Chosen Reservoir frost-bitten feet. My brother said Causey
    told him what had happened, and that it had "changed his life
    forever." Never again would he do "the collective thing" of race
    abuse. He saw the value of each individual, regardless of race,
    station, or other. He even forgave himself and became a worthy
    and honorable U.S. Marine.

    Jim Baxter
    Sgt. USMC
    WWII & Korean War
    semper fidelis
    a point-man/follower of The Lion of Judah

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  11. Hello brother & sister in Christ,

    I really agree with your observations. In fact, the analysis is the State of People of God in the USA today.
    It is true that religions but not all religions have succeeding to drive the people of God away from HIM, the ONLY WISE & LOVING GOD.
    Yes indeed, the "Men and women of GOD are slaughtered for lack of sherpherd".
    Who is going to sherpherd the people of God unless he is called by GOD HIMSELF?
    The Holy Scriptures said it well " My people hear my Voice etc..." The time has come to the people of GOD to pray daily in order to hear HIS voice and have a discernment about those whom are teaching them. Throughtout the Holy Bible from Genesis to Revelation, The Createur Jehovah and His Son Jesus Christ with the Holy Spirit show us the difference between those that are taught by men (human beings) and those that are of GOD or GOD-sent.
    Examples: The prophet Elijah and the sons of prophets; the prophet Elisha & the sons of prophets; the prophet Jeremiah & The other prophets of the king of isreal.

    Before a Christian person selects a church or a group of worship, this person must fast and pray and wait for the Lord Jesus Christ's answer.
    Today's pastors are professional in Biblical studies and theological studies. They know so much the Bible and how to do church that they have forgotten the Author of the Bible and all Creation. They have forgotten for whom they working. Most of them prefers to take their wages here on earth instead of heaven.
    The majority of the pastors and priests believe they should be rich and live well here on earth because they are serving a rich and wealthy GOD.
    But I still have this question of Jesus Christ unanswered by the Church today. this question is "Who do you go to the desert to see?"
    Is the true follower of GOD live in oppulence?
    Is the true follower of Christ wear fine clothes?
    Is the true follower of Christ travel with the finest transportations on earth?
    so " who do you go to the desert to see?"
    Let's the church today answer this question.

    Also, I would like to ask the body of Christ to identify the spiritual mother of the christian faith. As a human being has a mother and father, a Christ-Like person should have a spiritual Mother and a spiritual Father. Most christians know their spiritual Father but not their spiritual Mother. For the family to be completed, the spiritual mother has to be identified and involved in the raising of the Christ-like child.
    At the foot of the Cross, Jesus Christ said to the Apostle John "Son, this is your Mother and Mother, here is your Son..." Then Jesus Christ said " It is finished".
    Brothers & sisters in Christ, Was it necessary for our Lord & Saviour to mention these words to John at the foot of the Cross? Why & why not?
    Unlike you have a Father and Mother, it is impossible to understand fully and completely the mystery of Christ Jesus.
    Like single mothers and single dads, it is not impossible for them to raise their child or children but the child/children will not be able understand what it is like to be in a family with both parents. That's why some churches have been acting like rebellious children from single parent homes.
    Let's pray in this difficult time for the body of Christ to have the spirit of discernment, for the sick to get well, for poor to be hopeful, for the prisoners to be conforted and for Revival to come in the USA.
    Let's join all our prayers in this year to more like Christ Jesus our Lord and savior.
    Amen Amen Amen

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  12. Abdul-Rashid 'Femi Owoyemi20 January, 2009

    My name is Pastor Abdul-Rashid Femi Owoyemi - a Nigerian born muslim who became born-again by grace in 1992. I cannot describe my joy to read your article. The Lord has spoken to me since 2005 and more earnestly in 2007 and 2008 that a shaking was coming on the land and in the body of Christ. He said the shaking would clear away the mess in the church so that the glory of the Lord might be revealed. He said that this shaking is not of destruction but to make the church "lean and vibrant." This is why I agree completely with what you are bringing forth.
    The church has been deaf to what the Lord is saying and has been advancing human ideas rather than follow divine direction. I see a great deal of hypicrisy in the church. I was never a Christian and perharps this makes it easy for me to see these things. Tradition has replaced the refreshing experience that comes from the leading of the Holy Spirit. It is not for us to direct our paths. Our ways must be directed by God if we are to impact our environment.
    The church is not meant to be an extension of the world. The church is meant to shine the light for the world to see. This cannot be done unless we stand frimly on the foundation of the word of God. God does not change. His word does not change. He does not need to modify His policies, priciples, teaching, instructions and doctrine. The same word that worked two thousand years ago is still the one that will work now.
    The church should not shift ground because it is established on the eternal Rock who is our Lord Jesus Christ. Apostle Paul said that no other foundation can be laid.
    When we retrun to the word of God, we will experience what the Lord says we will experience. I believe firmly that no man can see the power of God and deny it. When the power of God becomes a common expersssion in the church, people will turn to God. The church is not an entertainment arena. It is the school of the Holy Spirit who teaches, leads, guides, and directs. The Holy Spirit is the Teacher of the church. He is the One who draws up and teaches the syllabus of each church. It is the Holy Spirit that can truly instruct the body of Christ. Pastors and church leaders must pray more for the leading of the Holy Spirit so that they can lead the copngregation in the way the Lord is moving.
    I see too much drama in the church. I see flimsy things in the church. I see the church abandoning reality of scripture for the notions of men. The church today is putting out its light to accomodate the world! The rsult is increasing darkness, confusion, and chaos as we can see. When the shucrh assumes its role, there will be momentum for true change.
    Isaiah 2: 2 & 3 says, "Now it shall come to pass in the latter days, that the mountain of the Lord's house shall be establsihed on the top of the mountains; and shall be exalted above the hills; and all nations shall flow to it. Many people shall come and say, Come let us go up to the mountain of the Lord, to the house of the God of Jacob; He will taech us His ways, and we shall walk in His paths. For out of Zion shall go forth the law, and the word of God from Jerusalem." We are at the time that the world should be drawn to the light of God in the church. The church is to display divine wisdom and power that will make the world envious. It is the fatness brought about by our indulgences that has kept us weighed down. God therefore must shake us so that we may be lean and vibrant as He said. It is this leanness which produces holiness and devotion to righteousness that will allow His power of God to flow unhindered to bless the people to make them turn to God.
    Thank you for speaking up and providing a window for contributions.
    Pastor Abdul-Rashid 'Femi Owoyemi.

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