by —H. Schwab, originally in German, translated to Polish then English
October 5: Today my life began. My parents don’t know it yet. I am smaller than the seed of an apple, but already I am I. And unformed as I am right now, I’m goingto be a girl. I shall have blond hair and azure eyes, and I know I’ll love flowers.
October 19: I’ve grown a little, but I am still too small to do anything by myself. Mother does just about everything for me. And what’s funny, she still doesn’t even know that she is carrying me here right under her heart. And feeding me with her own blood.
October 23: My mouth is just beginning now. Just think. In a year or so I will be laughing. Later I will…
Two little-noticed news stories capture the true picture of the state of the global culture war today. The first is from the American deep red state of Idaho, where The Satanic Temple is holding a “Pride” event that features a “Drag Dance Party” and “Unbaptisms” – a ritual in which people who were once baptized…
This post was originally written back in 2018 and shared by Mary A. LaClair. Mary has invited me to join, as an author, The Proverbs 1:20 Column. It seems a good time to once again share some of the thoughts written about the church and what God may be saying to the church today.
I attended an event this past Sunday. In my heart of hearts I really believed that there would be a move of God on that day. I reached out to churches and groups and church leaders and those with giftings and abilities to attend the event with me. I was hurt and bewildered why some with a calling on their life couldn’t see the potential in this opportunity to reach thousands of people and hundreds of children. Church leaders and evangelists and Prophets all told me this was for me. I didn’t understand at the time.
At the event there was a bear, a living breathing creation of God. The Game Commission had trapped it. This bear, when it was brought out of the trap had a problem. It had mange. Now mange is a little mite that gets on the bear and causes the bear some problems. For this bear the little mite had caused it to lose hair on the bear’s face and shoulder. It also caused the bear to be underweight for its age. Because of the mite the Game Commission would not let anyone touch the bear so that this mite would not spread to people.
As I look back on that day, I am reflecting on what I learned. I believe it was a day that the Holy Spirit would have something to say. Perhaps He did and I was there to get the message.
As I looked on the bear, God’s creation, it brought tears to my eyes. To look at one of the creatures the Lord put here on the earth. As I looked at the body of the bear, I could see its claws, I could see its shape, its fur, its eyes, since it was sedated I was unable to see its strength but I know a bear can be powerful. Yet I could see the effects of the mange, how one little thing could affect the whole bear and since the bears own body was fighting against the little mite, the appearance of the bear showed the battle.
As I think about the body of the bear I reflect on the body of Christ, the church. Are we as strong as we could be? Are we as full grown as we ought to be? Are we as powerful as we should be? What battles are we fighting? Are we fighting the things that are in us and on us that are preventing us from growing into the powerful body the Lord has called us to be?
Reflect on this a little and consider what the Lord might speak to you through this.
A PASTOR’S REPLY – name withheld
The truth will not set us free? It is the truth that we know, Jesus said the truth you know shall set you free. Until you know truth, that truth cannot set you free. Below are just three examples of that truth:
Regarding the bear, it is symbolic of the church. See the church has been shot with a dart from the devil, just like the tranquilizer. Why was the bear shot? Because he was sick.
THE CHURCH TODAY IS SICK. IT HAS LET, PERMITTED THE LIES, AND FALSE TEACHINGS TO CREEP IN AND GIVE GROUND TO THE ENEMY.
THE CHURCH ” SHOULD BE ” big like the bear, strong, bold, and beautiful……………………… now it has let a little leaven, leaven the whole lump………………..the leaven of the Pharisees has crept in, little by little lie after lie.
Why do people accept lies, strain at gnats, while swallowing camel loads of sin? That bear is symbolic of the state of the church today, it needs to be healed, arise in its strength, and prepare for what is about to happen. Why were there so few that supported the event? That is the issue with the church today. They just want to support themselves, I, me, and mine. ME my four and no more! They will say they want to support others, but all the while they just want to steal from other ministries…………….. or because of the fear of someone stealing theirs they do not support others. The church like the bear is sick right now and needs a great awakening.
Thanks for thinking of me, I hope this helps ……………. this is what came to me exactly as I read it from you !
Here is a Post Script that I wrote that seems appropriate shared with the original post.
Sorry, Viewers. I do NOT know why this was discontinued when it ran for a few years quite well. It was a 4 minuite short clip from an hours long Q&A discussion with a panel of Mohler, Zacharias and Sproul. Both Ravi Zacharias and R.C. Sproul have since passed on. That is the only reason I can think of for having this short clip withdrawn. I have tried to contact Sproul’s Ligonier Ministries for permission, without success.
So, for your benefit let me quote one of Dr. Sproul’s succinct statements:
When the audience question was asked: (paraphrased) ‘God is a loving, forgiving God… He hates the sin, but loves the sinner, so all will go to heaven, right?
Sproul: “LOOK, THIS IS NOT MR. ROGERS’ NEIGHBORHOOD. GOD DOESN’T SEND SIN TO HELL…. HE SENDS SINNERS TO HELL.”
In these times we may expect Doomsday prophets to increase– but what purpose do these messages serve?
To induce fear and hopelessness?- That is how some react. But could they serve to issue dire warnings?
Many think the first. Some can tend to slip close to despair or cynicism.
If, however, warnings are the intention, what courses of action would be advised?
Let’s see if the Holy Scriptures address the issue:
Summary of 2 Kings 20:1-6 reveal that the Lord told King Hezekiah was at the point of death and would not recover. Yet when the King had a discourse with the Lord, the Lord relented and gave the King fifteen more years. Did the King simply accept the word that he would not recover, and wait to die? No, rather he entered into reasoning with…
This was published two years ago on 3/9/18, it is being re-posted again here now, two years later, because the need for the knowledge of its content still seems to exist
— Mary A. LaClair
2 Chron 7:14-15
if my people who are called by my name humble themselves, and pray and seek my face, and turn from their wicked ways, thenI will hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin and heal their land. RSV (emphasis mine)
Because our land needs healing, let’s unpack this often quoted verse to its fullest. This verse is often heard with emphasis on the words “pray”. But that is not all this verse is saying. Not to be overlooked or diminished, which I think is happening, is the equally important phrase, “and turn from their wicked ways”.
How many times have we heard that part emphasized recently? The emphasis has been mostly on the word “pray”.
What happens if we do in fact pray, but do not in fact turn from our wicked ways?
Is God obligated to fulfill His part of the bargain …….if we do not meet or fulfill the ‘and’ words?
pray …AND seek… AND turn ….They are verbs – action words, if you will.
Who needs to take these actions? We need to know to whom this is addressed. Is it addressed to all people in general? Is it to God’s people? Who are God’s people? It tells us who they are. The ones ‘called by His Name’. The ones claiming to be ‘Christian’.
Can you see that we are the ones who carry the power to get our land healed? Wow! What power with God!
Why, then, is our land not being healed faster than it is?
We can pray, but unconfessed sin is a hindrance to our being heard. Three translations put the same verse this way:
Ps 66:18 “If I had ignored my sins, the Lord would not have listened to me.” TEV
Ps 66:18-19 “He would not have listened if I had not confessed my sins. But he listened! He heard my prayer! He paid attention to it! ” TLB
Ps 66:18 :…the Lord would not have listened; if I cherished sin in my heart.” NIV
This seems to deal with thoughts.
Ps 139:23-24 “Search me, O God, and know my heart; test me and know my anxious thoughts. See if there is any offensive way in me, and lead me in the way everlasting.” NIV
Jer 23:24 “Can anyone hide himself in secret places so that I cannot see him? says the Lord. Do not I fill heaven and earth? says the Lord. ” AMP
Do church leaders need to strain at gnats and swallow camels ?
No. I believe there are large camels of sin in our churches. Where does one start? Well, because of all the sexual harassment claims, let’s start with lust. It is big in the world today and has even crossed lines into the churches. Several high profile pastors have admitted they have been delivered from pornography, many more probably have not; and it is not limited to pastors. Anyone who wants answers to prayers needs to consider themselves. Getting pornography removed from the internet would go a long way to curbing these sins in the Nation and in the church. In view of much sexual misconduct in Congress ; and in view of disrespect for human life via numerous mass murders, whether by vehicle, bombs, guns, or infanticide (abortion at birth), now would be a good time to express the need to respect life. I suggest this may be done by re-criminalizing BOTH porn AND abortion. We did not have these problems when those laws were in effect.
Now may be the time to cite some causes for these national problems and correct them: lack of respect for women and for human life . These are problems for which this Nation should find solutions, and as Christians we should be able to offer them those solutions, but not just for benefit of the church, for the benefit of our government and our country. In solving their problems we might just also be solving our own.
Teaching proper respect for ourselves and for the opposite sex would go a long way, but the Lord says the action itself needs to start with us.
God can’t clean up the world until He first cleans up His church. There are secret sins and not-so-secret-sins hidden within the church.
According to the opening Scripture, which holds a promise: We need to get rid of these sins in God’s people if our prayers are to be answered. Will it start with you and me? If it does, maybe then God can clean up the world a little faster. And God knows we need it. Our prayers won’t get ready answers until we first clean up the church. We can’t expect the world to be cleaner than the church.
1 Peter 3:7 “Husbands, in the same way be considerate as you live with your wives, and treat them with respect as the weaker partner and as heirs with you of the gracious gift of life, so that nothing will hinder your prayers. ” NIV
WORK ON THE SOLUTION ! ……..
Who can discern his errors?Forgive my hidden faults. Keep your servant also from willful sins;may they not rule over me.Then will I be blameless,innocent of great transgression. May the words of my mouth and the meditation of my heartbe pleasing in your sight,O Lord , my Rock and my Redeemer. NIV
Encourage your flock to ask God to reveal to each individual any unconfessed and unknown sins which may be hindering their prayers. We should encourage repentance of sins while avoiding condemnation or even public confession. Blanket forgiveness of active sins without repentance is not God’s way. Jesus preached repentance. God can identify sin in those who ask, without producing excessive guilt. Repentance still needs to be preached today. Jesus is able to identify sin and convict individuals without condemnation. Let Him do it — but do encourage God’s lambs and sheep to seek God’s help in identifying their sin. Then, when you have cleansed yourself, pray for others to find the same courage of self examination and repentance.
Blessings upon all!
“…but if by the Spirit you put to death the misdeeds of the body, you will live, because those who are led by the Spirit of God are sons of God.” NIV
One final word:
Phil 2:13 “For God is at work within you, helping you want to obey him, and then helping you do what he wants.” TLB
Is God in you? Pray the sinners prayer, admit sin, ask for His help, ask Jesus into your heart then seek His Holy Spirit more fully.
“Lord Jesus, I admit I’m a sinner, I need your forgiveness, please include my sins with those sins for which you died. Come into my life, help me to be all that you want me to be, come into my heart and let my spirit be born again into Your Holy Spirit, put my feet on the straight path and always guide me in thought word and deed. Thank you Jesus.”
If you prayed that prayer with sincerity, you may now claim the Scripture:
Phil 2:13 “For God is at work within you, helping you want to obey him, and then helping you do what he wants.” TLB
What do you say Pastors: will you preach self-examination and repentance to our church families?
Individuals: are we ready to seek God’s help in this?
God’s blessings be upon us as we work through things with Jesus!
One of the arguments made by the editor of Christianity Today Magazine was that supporting Trump ruined our witness to America. No one yearns to win souls more than I do, therefore, I will tackle this argument, beginning with a story that seems to be analogous.
After the United States Army liberated the German concentration camps, General Eisenhower viewed the incomprehensible horror. His reaction was to make every soldier in the area come and see it for themselves.
When he was asked why he had subjected these men to such savagery and why he forced them to view images which they could never wash from their minds, he said this, “We are told that the American soldier does not know what he was fighting for. Now, at least he will know what he is fighting against.”
Millions of Christians look at Trump and see a man who is not perfect…
Lessons From the Fire at Notre Dame Cathedral – Paris — April 2019
Mary Adele LaClair
This is a picture I remember seeing on TV news after the tragic fire at Notre Dame Cathedral in Paris In April 2019. The Cross and the Pieta survive whole amidst charred ruins. What a picture.
Notre Dame means “Our Lady”. France has traditionally been known as a Catholic County.
The lesson which drops into my mind is this:
Perhaps in these last days, as many think that the Lord’s returning may be soon, even perhaps in our lifetime:
…just perhaps the people of France, and we the people of the world, should be thinking more of Jesus Himself than ‘Our Lady’.
Perhaps a lesson from this tragic fire which destroyed part of an 850 year old structure could be this:
It is time to:
FOCUS MORE ON THE MESSAGE THAN THE MESSENGER
28 “Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. 29 Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. 30 For my yoke is easy and my burden is light.” Matthew 11:28-30 New International Version (NIV)
When the boss, who was over my boss, called me into his office I was curious but not fearful. I had done nothing wrong and I knew how to stand up to something wrong should it be suggested.
“I’m looking at how you reconciled this accounting, and I really think it is right, but I’m not understanding how you arrived at it.”
I was better at math than most my age. My first job out of business school was in an accounts payable division of a local manufacturing plant. When a wholesaler made a payment on their account it was my job to reconcile it to invoices and figure interest on any late payments over thirty days.
This particular account was a rather large wholesaler. Reconciling this particular account could be intimidating. Having done it, I remembered for months how it was done, so that I could explain it if questioned. Months went by, and hearing nothing, had decided it was understood.
When called into his office at that time, this was the matter which was brought up.
“You know, sir, I remembered that solution for quite awhile because I thought it might be questioned, and when it wasn’t brought up, I figured it was understood by the higher ups, and I just decided to forget it.”
“You ‘just decided’ to forget it?”
As I sat there quietly, he was contemplative and silent for what seemed a few minutes.
“Tell me, how is it possible for one to make a decision to “just forget”?
“….by not rehearsing it in your mind…” , I said. And that is what I had done. I had rehearsed that solution to the math problem in my mind to keep it alive for an explanation, when necessary.
“Hmmm, ….just forget by not rehearsing it in your mind…???!”
“You are free to go. And,…by the way, …thank you!”. And then more quietly, more to himself as I left, “Yes, thank you.”
I had the distinct feeling that he was mentally applying that to something other than reconciling an accounts payable account.
— end —
P.S. I was almost sorry I didn’t get the chance to show my math skills. But I don’t bemoan the fact. I ‘just forget it’ …by “not rehearsing it in my mind,” …and trusting God to turn it to good.