Tears of a Saint

unnamed

My heart hurts. The tears flow. I don’t know how to stop the evil in our world. I have begun to doubt that God is really in control. How can He be when the most innocent of innocent are slaughtered at the hands of the most evil and vile of what is known as human beings? How can the Highest of Highest stand by and allow these monsters called intelligent beings rip from the womb the most innocent of His?

My heart cries and there seems to be no answers. I scream, “Come Lord Jesus, come and stop this madness!” Yet I see Him not on the clouds of heaven racing toward earth to save us from the insanity that has crossed this land.

Is He in control? I have to remind myself through faith because He died on the cross to save us. I have to hang  onto the faith that He has instilled within me through His Holy Spirit and the trials and tribulations that He has brought me through. I have to hang on to His promises.

Can I finish this race with confidence that I will see Him in Paradise? Can I rest assured that He will greet me with open arms because my thoughts are so confused and the enemy invades. The doubts, the fears, the anger, and the hope, are all  intermingled with the tears streaming down my cheeks.

There is a Rock and a Life line that I must cling to or drown in this sea of evil, pure unadulterated evil! Can I make it that long? Can I hang on long enough to hear the trumpet sound?

I hope so.

I have to.

I will!

***

Psalm 46:1 – “God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble.”

***

In every Christian’s life there will be times when we just cannot understand what is taking place within our world. Doubts can and will arise and it is then that the enemy will invade and convince us, or try to convince us, that all we have believed is wrong. That we have been fed a pack of lies and we can no longer trust what is truth. If we allow those thoughts to take root we will lose all hope. We will lose the strength and perseverance that the Lord gives us. We must cling to the Word of God and cling to His promises. Don’t allow a lack of understanding to squelch the truth of God and all that He is and all of Who He is. Stand strong on the faith that has been instilled through the Holy Spirit and lean not on your own understanding.

http://www.elahministriesinc.com

http://www.Cybersupportgroup.org

http://www.facebook.com/elahministries

 

Advertisements

I AM – Devotional Style Short Stories – “The Devil’s Playground”

The Devil’s Playground

The day began bright and sunny and the woman went about her daily chores. She stopped by her office to quickly check her e-mail and suddenly her world seemed to turn upside down. Reading the last of the short e-mail sudden anger boils up within her. The day is now shot as she stomps about office with questions broiling through her mind. In a short time her strong faith has taken a sucker punch to the gut.

By sundown tears continue to flow, not only from the anger within, but from the devastating news and the confusing thoughts screaming through her mind. Sorrow fills her heart but the anger and confusion overrides all feelings of empathy and sorrow. How can God do this!? screams in her mind.

By bed time her tears continue to flow and sleep is non-existent. The news she received pounds through her mind over and over and then other events, past events, intrude. Her anger boils until she feels she will go crazy. By the wee hours she is exhausted yet sleep will not come. Angry thoughts, thoughts of an unloving God, thoughts of how everything she has believed is hog wash intrude her mind.

Without realizing she has dozed off she’s embroiled in a dream. In the dream she is on a tight rope and at the far end of the tight rope a large black panther is creeping toward her. Step by step he comes closer with teeth bared and a riveting intent on killing her.

He gets close enough that she suddenly and viciously kicks the panther as hard as she can. He flies off the tight rope, but returns. Again, he slowly stalks his prey. Hunkered down with piercing eyes focused and teeth gleaming through a low vicious growl, he moves slowly and purposefully.

She cocks her leg once again and when the big cat raises its paw to rip her wide open with his deadly claws, she kicks with all her might and hears a painful yelp from the cat as he falls into the abyss below.

Jerking awake, with heart racing, and jagged breathing, she sees a Man standing at the foot of her bed.

She blinks.

“Now you know where the anger and confusion is coming from,” the Man states and disappears.

***

1Timothy 4:1 – “Now the Spirit expressly says that in the latter times some will depart from the faith, giving heed to deceiving spirits and doctrines of demons.”

***

When things are going well it’s easy to thank God for all His blessings. We walk and talk our faith and then suddenly something happens that seems to knock the skids right out from under us. When that happens there is a hungry lion ready to pounce on us and rip our faith to shreds. The devil waits for any opportunity to invade our minds for that is where we are the most vulnerable. I like to say, the mind is the devil’s playground, but in reality our mind is his prey and he is deadly serious! If he can invade our minds and feed us deception, and we listen, he will accomplish his purpose. His sole purpose is to turn us away from God. The slightest occurrence that takes place in our life can be a target for the enemy. Maybe the job we wanted didn’t come through. The devil will jump in with, “You aren’t good enough for that job.” He is the master of lies and deception. Standing strong in what God’s Word says is not always easy but to hold onto our faith and holding to God’s promises we must fight the lies of the devil. Today many churches have been invaded by spirits of darkness that leads them to compromise the truth of God’s word. People are being deceived by many who the enemy is using in these last days to deceive the congregations. Beware for the devil prowls about like a lion looking for his next prey, and we all are his targets!

http://www.elahministriesinc.com

http://www.cybersupportgroup.org

http://www.facebook.com/elahministries

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I AM – Devotional Style Short Stories – “Suspense at the River”

 

SUSPENSE AT THE RIVER

Having left his family behind, the man runs along the river and needs to stop to catch his breath. Breathing deeply he looks about while listening to the chirping of the birds. The breeze rustles his hair.

Stroking his beard he walks to the edge of the water. It’s late afternoon and while leaning forward and breathing deeply he listens to the sounds of nature as he thinks, I better get moving. It will be dark soon.

Taking another quick deep breath he begins to run. Suddenly he hears footsteps behind him alerting him to a possible danger and he glances back but sees no one. He continues to run and has to stop again to catch his breath. He has no idea how far he has run but feels an urgency to accomplish his mission. He kneels down and takes a long drink of the cool clear water. He splashes a little on his face, and then continues to run.

Running farther along the shore he slows his pace as he glances back again. The sun has lowered in the sky. Shadows begin to appear along his route and chills skitter down his spine. The footsteps behind become louder, closer, more threatening, yet he isn’t afraid.

Glancing back he suddenly stumbles over a branch lying on the ground and falls into the river, just at the edge, not the deep water. Someone grabs him. He fights, he struggles, and  he lashes out. His strength is giving out but he continues to fight the stranger and has decided he will fight to the end. He feels his life depends on it.

Water blurs his vision, his hair strings across his face, his beard is soaked feeling heavy on his face, his muscles are weakening but he won’t give up.

No words are spoken and the night melts into the dawn. He’s weak but still determined. The fighting, the wrestling, has continued all through the night. It’s taken its toll on his body. He feels a sudden jab to his hip and groans loudly but continues to wrestle the stranger.

With one last determined spurt of energy he swings at the stranger and grabbing him by his sleeve he wrestles him toward the sandy shore. The silence is suddenly broken as the stranger begs for him to let him go. He won’t let go! He grunts and breathing heavily he grabs the stranger by the shoulders. Shaking him he looks directly into the stranger’s eyes and yells, “I won’t let you go unless you bless me!”

***

Gen. 32:26 – “And he said, “Let me go, for the day breaks.” But he said, “I will not let you go unless You bless me!”

***

So many times we are going through life and everything seems to be going great and then something happens that really rattles our faith. It could be a death of a child or a loved one that is so unexpected it throws us into a tailspin. It could be a sudden job loss or business that seems to suddenly go sour and we don’t have a clue as to why it happened. We reach out to God and there seems to be no answers coming. We wrestle with the “whys” and “how come this happened?” and then we begin wrestling with God. We want answers! We want Him to explain and to help us understand. We want Him to at least give us some guidance or comfort or peace. We want something, anything to stop the mental wrestling going on in our minds. Finally we are so  exhausted from the mental wrestling match that we grab hold of Him and scream, “Bless me O’ Lord, I need You.”

http://www.elahministriesinc.com

http://www.cybersupportgroup.org

http://www.facebook.com/elahministries

 

 

I AM – Devotional Style Short Stories – “The Wheel”

Imagine it. The horses are tethered, they stomp their feet in anticipation of a long trek and snort their disapproval of having to wait. John and Tom crawl up onto the driver’s seat as the Man, with spurs jingling, throws open the stage door and takes His seat on the hard wooden bench. John gives a loud whistle as he cracks the whip above the horses and the coach jerks forward.

The day is hot even though the sun has just risen. The Man reaches up and takes His big white hat off and lays it on the seat beside Him as He leans back against the hard wooden seat. It will be a long ride along the dusty path. The wind blows his hair and reaching up He moves it out of His eyes. He can hear John and Tom talking and occasionally laughter fills the air. He smiles and closes His eyes and is soon asleep.

A sudden jolt and dangerous tilting of the coach startles the Man awake throwing Him against the wall. One side of the coach has collapsed and the coach suddenly stops. John and Tom jump down from their perch and Tom wrings his hands while groaning loudly. “What are we going to do?” he shouts while pacing back and forth, spurs jingling, in front of the broken wheel. “Where’s the Man?” he shouts and spins around to see the Man carefully maneuvering His way out of the coach and popping His hat back on His head. In spinning around, Tom catches his pants leg on a spur, and down he goes. He hollers, “Ouch!”

The Man stands for a moment and brushes the dust off His chaps. When He looks up He sees Tom on the ground rubbing his behind.

The Man shakes His head while chuckling.

Tom pulls himself up and runs to the Man, “The wheel is broken, what are we to do? We don’t have a spare. We’re stuck out here!” Sweat pours down his face and he quickly swipes it out of his eyes. Fear has gripped him and the Man gently places His hand on Tom’s shoulder, “Fear not, Tom, I am with you.”

The Man walks to the side of the stage-coach. He stands studiously peering at the good wheel with John and Thomas close behind Him.

“Sit!” the Man says to the two men. “I want to tell you something.” They sit down, Tom easing himself down gently, onto the ground and looks up at Him. “He’s going to tell us a story in the midst of this crisis?” Tom thinks while rubbing his backside. John sits quietly waiting.

“Do you see this wheel?” the Man asks, pointing to the good stage-coach wheel.

Both nod yes. “This wheel represents the body of Christ.” Tom whispers, “Huh?” The Man smiles and then continues. “The spokes are My children.” Tom moves his hat aside and scratches his head. John nods. “Pay attention, Tom!” The Man demands. “Each spoke is equal but each has been given a divine purpose. One has a gift of prophecy, another has the gift of exhortation, another is a teacher, another is a home maker, and another a preacher. All work together to make the wheel, the church, strong.”

The Man reaches over and takes hold of one of the spokes and gives it a good jerk. “As long as these spokes cling tightly to the hub the wheel will remain strong and sturdy. I tell you the truth; I am the Hub that holds it all together.”

“Okay.” Tom states and glances up at the hot sun shining down on them.

“Now let’s go look at the broken wheel,” The Man states.  The two men stand and walk to the broken wheel. The broken and crushed wheel lies tilted on the dirt beside the coach. Splinters and jagged wood protrude from it. The rim is bent beyond repair. It’s useless.

“What do you see?” the Man asks. Tom is quick to reply, “A broken, crushed wheel and we’re stuck out here in this heat.”

“Oh ye of little faith.  Look at it! I tell you the truth, the body of Christ is broken!”

“Huh?” Tom says. John nods in understanding.

“My shepherds are not teaching My Word. They are following the dictates of what the people want to hear. They are accepting evil as good and turning good into evil! Instead of loving one another as I love them they are divided. They are accepting the ploys of the enemy to destroy their faith. When one falls away the others are quick to condemn.”

Tom sits quietly rubbing his behind where the spurs dug in, and John asks, “I’m not sure I fully understand. How does this relate to this broken wheel and the circumstances we are in?”

“Do you not yet understand, John? When one spoke is broken the wheel can still turn, the others offer support. It keeps the wheel from completely falling apart. But when several spokes break it weakens the whole wheel until eventually the wheel cannot move forward.” Pointing to the broken wheel, He continues. “It lies dead in the sand. Just like that! Now what good is that wheel?” He asks sternly.

Tom states dejectedly, “Good for nothing.”

“That’s where my church is heading unless the body repents and comes together in unity. If My children will turn back to Me I will hear their prayers and heal their land but they must stop being weak in their faith, silent in the face of evil, and stand up to the sins in the world or the church will be as weak and damaged and useless as this wheel!”

Tom shifts uncomfortably. He still doesn’t get it and asks, “But what are we to do?” and thinks, We’re still stuck out here.  

The Man turns and points to a large stick in the distance. “Have faith! Tom, go get that long stick over there.”

“What for?” Tom asks, carefully getting up off the ground.

“You’ll see. Just trust Me.”

Tom retrieves the long stick. “Now what?”

“Strike that broken wheel three times with it.”

“Huh? What good is that going to do?”

“Just do it, Tom!” The Man states emphatically.

Shaking his head in bewilderment Tom strikes the broken wheel.

The Man tosses His hat on the wooden seat and leans back as the dust from the spinning coach wheels and the horse’s hooves billows through the open window, When are they going to trust Me!? He thinks and closes His eyes.

***

Proverbs 3:5-6 – “Trust in the Lord with all thine heart; and lean not on your own understanding; In all your ways acknowledge Him, and He will guide your paths.”

***

There are so many situations and circumstances that we find ourselves in that at times we merely stand and scratch our heads wondering. “What in the world are we going to do now? In our flesh (humanness) we try to figure things out and at times we just cannot come up with a solution. If we turn to the One who has the answers we will find life’s problems aren’t as complicated as we sometimes think they are. If we reach out to Christ in those “head scratching” moments, it can become a time of, “Oh wow, why didn’t I think of that?” moments.

http://www.elahministriesinc.com

http://www.cybersupportgroup.org

http://www.facebook.com/elahministries

 

 

 

 

 

 

I AM – Devotional Style Short Stories – “IS ANYBODY AT HOME?”

The leaves have turned to their golden hues, the oranges are bright, the browns deep, and the yellow sends a subdued brilliance across the land. The sidewalks are cleared and the homes luxurious. The Man stops in front of the large home and stares at its magnificence.

He enters the open gate and slowly walks the long tree-lined brick lain driveway to the front door and reaches for the gold-plated door bell. He waits. There is no sound of footsteps so He presses the button again.

He waits.

The third time He presses the button He steps back and looks around. A large dog in the yard barrels around the corner barking furiously and bearing its large teeth. The Man smiles. There is no fear and the dog stops beside Him and wagging his tail licks the Man’s hand. No one comes to the door so the man pats the dog on the head and returns to the street.

As He walks slowly down the tree-lined street He gazes at the beauty of the colorful trees and landscaping of the homes. He walks the long circular driveway of another home and steps up to the etched glass door and rings the doorbell.

He hears footsteps approaching and the door is cautiously opened slowly and a maid with her black uniform and white apron asks who He is and what He wants.

“I am the I Am.” the Man replies. “May I speak to the head of the household?”

The maid looks at Him curiously and replies, “Just a moment,” and disappears behind the closed-door.

The master of the house appears and with a smirk asks, “What can I do for you?”

The Man reaches His hand out to shake the owners hand but the owner just looks at the Man’s hand and doesn’t reciprocate. The Man nods and simply states, “I am the I Am. You need Me.”

Laughter fills the air as the owner stands with his hand on the door knob laughing as though he’s just been told a very funny joke.

The Man waits.

The laughter has turned to a snarl and the owner states emphatically, “Look around you! Look at this home! Do you see the Lambro Deni in the drive? Do you see all that I have accomplished; the big home, the beautiful car, the magnificent landscaping? You fool! I don’t need anything you are offering!” He steps back and slams the door in the Man’s face.

The Man moves on down the street and when receiving the same arrogant greeting at several of the homes, He stops in front of a shack that the neighbors have tried to get condemned.

The grass is overgrown. Weeds line the partially collapsed fence. The shingles need repair, and one window is cracked and barely hanging onto the frame. He walks to the splintered, weather-beaten wooden door being careful on the three broken steps and knocks loudly.

“Who is it?” is yelled from the other side.

“I am the I Am.” the Man states.

The door flings open on its rickety hinges. A woman rushes out to meet the Man. She’s dressed in a ragged dress, bare feet, and hair a mess. Her face is lined with life’s pressures and yet her eyes sparkle with tears of joy as she hugs the Man and states, “Come in, come in. I just made some soup.”

The Man steps inside.

***

Proverbs 11:4 – “Riches do not profit in the day of wrath, but righteousness delivers from death.”

***

The Lottery lines are long when the jackpot rises to millions of dollars. Thousands of people stand in line with fancy dreams floating through their minds. “If only I can win, then I’ll…” is the dream. Casinos are loud, smoky, and filled with hopes and dreams of “hitting the big one” and many walk away disappointed for their dream was not fulfilled. Men and women work day in and day out to climb the corporate ladder to gain the success they feel will put them on top only to find the internal emptiness is still there. In our quest for “the good things of life;” that large house, new car, expensive silk suits, and fine jewelry, we often times forget that there are no moving trucks allowed in heaven. All the work, all the sacrifices we make, are left behind when we take our last earthly breath. When that last breath is exhaled we will find ourselves in one of two places; heaven or hell. There is nothing wrong with being wealthy but riches will not buy us a ticket into heaven! Christ will hand us the key to His kingdom freely if we reach out for it. Riches might satisfy for a time but they will only bring us great torment and sorrow and lead us into Satan’s domain if we rely on our wealth and not on faith in Jesus Christ. Eternity is a very long, unending time, and no amount of money and wealth can keep us from spending eternity in eternal torment and agony, or spending it in great love, peace, and joy.

http://www.elahministriesinc.com

http://www.cybersupportgroup.org

http://www.facebook.com/elahministries

 

 

I AM – Devotional Style Short Stories – “The Garden”

The Garden

The ground has been tilled, the weeds removed, and the tools set aside, for now. The woman sits at her kitchen table holding her hot mug of coffee while contemplating on the day ahead.

The doorbell rings startling her out of her revelry and she sets the mug on the table and walks to the door. Opening it, a Man stands smiling and asks, “Are you ready to plant your garden?”

“Yes,” she replies. “I’ll meet you out back.”

The Man is standing beside the tilled plot of ground looking down at it when she walks up beside Him. “It isn’t very big but you know how I love to garden.” She apologetically states.

“Did you know that only one seed can grow and multiply? Don’t worry about the size.” The Man wisely states.

They kneel down in the dirt and begin planting a few seeds, some plants she acquired at the nursery, and patting the dirt carefully around them she seems pleased with their progress.

The Man sits down at the edge of the garden and gazes over the now filled plot. He’s quiet and the woman looks over at Him, smiles, and then asks, “A penny for your thoughts?”

He chuckles. Scooping up some dirt in His hand He looks at her and holds out His hand. “This dirt represents people. If they are nurtured the seed will grow. If not, the seed will die. It all depends on the person.”

The woman sits thinking for a moment and then looks at Him a little confused.

“You are planting seeds here in this dirt and you fully expect all of them to grow.” He states. “But what about the seeds you plant in people’s hearts? Not all those seeds will grow but do you stop planting?”

The woman stares down at the garden they just planted for a long moment. “I never thought of that. This is like the parable of the seeds in the Bible.”

“Exactly. People get discouraged when they don’t witness the seeds planted growing and give up. Like the seeds here in this soil, some will grow into beautiful plants and others will be choked out by weeds if you don’t tend to the garden.”

The woman stands, dusts off her jeans, and replies, “Let’s get some ice tea. I think I understand.”

***

 

Matthew 13:8 – “Still other seed fell on good soil, where it produced a crop—a hundred, sixty or thirty times what was sown.” (See Matthew 13:1-9)

***

I love to play in the dirt planting flowers. This story reminds me of how I planted a seed, A Rose of Sharon, and came back the next year to see a grown plant with all the seed pods at the ends of the branches. In no time I found dozens of small Rose of Sharon plants sprouted around the foot of the main plant. That’s how Christianity is supposed to work. We plant spiritual seeds in someone’s life, nurture it, and watch how that person goes out into the secular world and plants more seeds. We, as Christians, are gardeners. We plant, we nurture, and hopefully, our seeds have taken deep roots and multiply into the kingdom of God. Don’t be discouraged if you don’t see the results of your labor of love. Not all “soil” is receptive.

http://www.elahministriesinc.com

http://www.cybersupportgroup.org

http://www.facebook.com/elahministries

 

 

Now That’s Faith!

 

The sun is beating down. Sweat pours down men’s sides, down their faces, rags are dug out to swipe the sweat from their eyes as the crowd closes in closer and closer and closer.

A woman leaves her chair and with disgust she thinks, “This has got to stop and I’m going to do something about it right now!” She peeks out the window and can hear the crowd and see many gathered together.

Leaving the comfort of her home, in pain she crawls slowly toward the crowd. She has to stop and crouches over as pain rips through her body. Taking a deep breath of determination, slowly she claws her way through the legs, around robes, and ignores the stench of dirty feet.

She looks up and moves robes to the side and with a sigh crawls the next few inches to where a Man is standing. With her last bit of energy she reaches up and grabs the tassel hanging from His shawl. She wants to cling to it with all her might but is thrown back as though lightning has struck her as soon as she touches it.

The Man turns suddenly and shouts, “Who touched Me?” The woman lies sprawled on the ground at His feet.

“Who touched Me? I felt My power leave my body.” The Man states.

The crowd goes crazy and someone shouts, “With all these people how do we know who touched you?” The Man looks down and sees the woman sprawled on the ground. He kneels down and gently lifts her up and cradles her in His arms.

Now He knows who touched Him.

Her eyes flutter open, she sighs as she gazes up at Him.

Her infirmity is healed.

 

(Sue’s version) Matthew 9:21

http://www.Elahministriesinc.com

http://www.cybersupportgroup.org

http://www.facebook.com/elahministries