The Old Lady and the Bazooka

I want to show you something. Look over there. Yes, that little old lady hobbling into the church for the prayer meeting. There she is. Modestly dressed and slightly hunched.

But, look again! Suddenly you get a “flash of insight” and she looks like Rambo: a hunting knife clenched between her teeth, a bandoleer of bullets strapped diagonally across her chest, an automatic rifle at the ready in her hands, a bazooka strapped over one shoulder, a string of grenades encircles her waist.

You know what? That may well be how God sees a lot of obscure prayer warriors. Hang on to that thought.

The other day I read, “Jesus stood up and cried out, “If anyone thirsts, let him come to me and drink. Whoever believes in me, as the Scripture has said, ‘Out of his heart will flow rivers of living water.’” Now this he said about the Spirit, whom those who believed in him were to receive …”(John 7:37-39 ESV)

Rivers of living water flowing out of us when the Spirit resides within! What does it look like when those rivers really flow?

Do we agitate our arms and shout in the name of Jesus at the limits of our voice? Do we take on a preacher tone of voice and pray until the back rows tremble and hearts say, “A great man has prayed!”

Do we walk to the offering plate and, like a wide receiver spiking the ball in the end zone, put in enough money to make the King of Siam jealous?

Rivers Or Trickles?

I’ve got two feelings about these “rivers” that flow out of me.

The Spirit really is within me but I often have the feeling that these rivers are more of a trickle from my heart. How can I get the mighty rivers flowing? –Clean out the blockages from the stream. –Get a better connection with the Source. –Flow has to go somewhere. Win the lost. Serve you brother and sister. Be there for others when they need a rock. Let God work through you in a greater way.

But maybe the water is flowing more powerfully than we think. Remember the dangerous little old lady from the first paragraph? When she prays, heaven trembles and things change. God may see you differently than you see yourself.

You prayed for that neighbor.

You listened to that friend.

You showed up to church when you were tired and also irritated about something. The others needed to see you. They draw strength from your presence.

You praised God in the morning, noon and evening.

You gave to meet that need.

You forgave when you wanted to take revenge.

You prayed with your children. And for them.

You were there for that needy person. You listened to that endless tale when you wanted to scream.

You resisted the overpowering urge to contribute that juicy morsel to the gossipy conversation about an absent person.

What a River Looks Like

You see, our world doesn’t always SEE what goes on in invisible, heavenly places. What seems like a bare trickle to our senses may be a crashing Niagara from God’s vantage point.

We think that when we preach in another country, or give our body to be burned or give away all our money, or manifest powerful spiritual gifts, rivers are flowing. They are. But that’s not the only time.

Here’s what the Lord says those rivers look like when they pour out of our heart:

“Love is patient and kind. Love is not jealous or boastful or proud or rude. It does not demand its own way. It is not irritable, and it keeps no record of being wronged. 6 It does not rejoice about injustice but rejoices whenever the truth wins out. 7 Love never gives up, never loses faith, is always hopeful, and endures through every circumstance.” 1 Cor. 13:4-7, NLT)

I suspect the fact that it’s “rivers of living water” flowing out of our inmost being means that the Spirit flows from each of us in a different way, some more exciting than others. But, when we’re full of Jesus, flow He does!

Hmmm … “New research from pastor and Christian researcher Ryan Burge finds that the number of people who identify themselves as evangelicals who attend church regularly continues to drop, with 26.7 percent saying they seldom or never go to church. About 13.5 percent of self-identified evangelicals say they go to church “yearly,” bringing the number of evangelicals who go to church once a year or less to about 40.2 percent.” Hmmm …

Powerful Word Springs From Covid-19 Outbreak

Samuel Peterschmitt is the pastor of probably the largest evangelical church in France, La Porte Ouverte of Mulhouse. Before everyone was quarantined and people realized the danger of public meetings they had a conference in their church.

Many people were infected with the Covis 19 virus and several died. Pastor Samuel was also hospitalized and had a real physical trial because of the virus. He is recovering and recently appeared on the Internet program, “On est ensemble,” (We are together) with the host, Eric Celerier.

He shares some powerful truths and I believe has a prophetic word at the end. Keep in mind, this is a church which has seen many miracles of healing. This article is from notes that Francois Ranvier made of the appearance.

“So I will be honest there are times when I was so badly (sick) that I could not even pray, or even read my Bible anymore. This is where I also became aware of how faith is not only this theology where we proclaim that we are strong, where we go forward. It also manifests itself in weakness.

“Faith” That Reduces God To a Performer

“…I must say it, on that night when God raised me, on this famous night, it was not the result of this manifestation of faith as we understand it. (This kind of faith) which is sometimes, forgive me, arrogant. It seems to me to reduce God to simply being performer.

“No, it is the faith that makes us dependent on Him, entirely dependent. And if I’m here today, I have no more merit than my friends who died; they had the same faith as me.

“There is an approach to faith today that seems presumptuous and which for me is clearly the result of a lack of knowledge of who God is. I told a friend of mine I feel like I have had a second new birth. (I feel I) know God so differently.

“Job said : “I know that you can do anything, and no one can stop you. You asked, ‘Who is this that questions my wisdom with such ignorance?’ It is I—and I was talking about things I knew nothing about, things far too wonderful for me.” (Job 42: 2-3, NLT)

“I discovered God in another dimension and realized that always wanting to provide answers leads to wrong conclusions.

“…I was surprised you know, I was in the hospital I was crying because all of a sudden I saw all kinds of people who wrote: ‘why did the Coronavirus hit us? Why did the curse come on us?’

“Videos were made … It was for the first time that I had the feeling of being the wounded on the way to Jericho next to which the Pharisee and the Levite pass without considering him but just looking for explanations for his situation.

Lord, you know, you know

“It was extremely trying for me and I said ‘Lord but you know, you know …’ And that’s why my faith was not shaken. Far from it. We have to come back to a lot of humility … We have been too often presumptuous, we speak of God as if we had studied him, as if we had walked around him, when it is He who knows us.

“We are very small, we have to come back to a lot of humility. I understood what it meant to be led to the desert and to listen. You know we sometimes preached on subjects but when we did not experience them from the inside; we realize how much we talked about things that we did not understand.

“And the fact that we don’t understand them, we made theories of them and sometimes with our speeches we crushed people, we made them feel guilty, we asked them things they couldn’t do, we sometimes been tough and demanding. May God forgive us, God forgive us! May God help us !

“Jesus said ‘Happy the poor in spirit. In other words happy are those who know they are dependent on Him, happy are those who know they know nothing, happy those who know that every day they need Him, happy those who are not seated in their certainties and on their throne of knowledge, happy are they because the kingdom of God is theirs.

“It blew up in my face. We have to learn to know God again, we have to discover him in a whole other dimension, we have to come back to humility. I bless God for this confinement. The church is forced to return to simplicity.

Back to Simplicity

“Not that the platforms and lighting are not necessary but we come back to this Christ who taught aboard a boat in the middle of the Lake of Galilee. There are no more frills, all the frills fall, all that is useless falls. There is no more gospel spectacle. There is just the Word and may God be blessed for these times of confinement.

“I have heard a lot since this crisis. I was impressed by the number of prophets, I just wish they had been there before. I just wish I had heard clear prophetic voices to warn us.

“Today there are a bunch of prophets who make friendly comments who prophesy nothing. I believe that in this area too, the fear of God must return so that we do not speak in His name lightly.

“Do not trust everything you hear (or) pay attention to everything that is said. Here’s what I believe: I don’t believe it’s the end, I don’t believe it’s the apocalypse.

“Everyone said in the last war that it was the end and then the war ended and life went on… life will go on simply because many men and women are not yet saved.

A sign of the end… not the end

“It’s a sign of the end of time but it’s not yet the end of time. Many men and women will come to a real awakening. All those who today are asking themselves existential questions, who realize that what they have invested in can collapse in a day, will seek what remains.

And I also address Christians: so many Christians have invested in the land. Jesus said “seek first the kingdom of God and its justice and all things will be given to you.”

Stop looking for things from the earth. Stop putting your priority on what will collapse and what you will have to leave. Invest in the Kingdom and all these things will be returned to you. Seek God.

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Get Ready for a War In 2017

(If you’d rather read this Coffee Stain online:

If you could see your skin under a microscope you might never sleep again. Just looking at a picture of this stuff makes me itch.

I saw a presentation on You Tube of things you never see in your body, magnified many times. It was beautiful and scary. ( )

There is a lot that goes on in the universe that we can’t see. And some scientists, or is it physicists? Or maybe it was George Lucas. Whatever, they tell us that there may be other dimensions of existence that we can’t see, super-imposed on our own reality.

Sound crazy? Well, to some extent, I believe that. Listen.

“For our fight is not against any physical enemy: it is against organisations and powers that are spiritual. We are up against the unseen power that controls this dark world, and spiritual agents from the very headquarters of evil.” (Ephesians 6:12, J.B. Phillips)

It’s a world superimposed over our world, acting in both worlds. Paul takes about “heavenly” or “spiritual” places and gives us a head-slap to wake us up to our need to fight. Continue reading

Even Chickens Have Their Limits

4872006395_9ac14985bf_z-2Growing up in the country, fried chicken was one of the basic food groups, so I had quite a lot of experience with our feathery friends.

Frankly, if they didn’t taste good, chickens would be a waste. Mostly what they did was run away you approached and fertilize any area where they happened to be scratching for bugs.

Frankly, if they didn’t taste good, chickens would be a waste. Mostly what they did was run away you approached and fertilize any area where they happened to be scratching for bugs.

In the Summer when tired students could finally sleep in (we were up at the crack of noon when we weren’t working), the male version of these living feather dusters would sing at the top of his voice way too early, way too early in the morning.

Chickens, except for a few ornery roosters, were mostly scared of everything and that fact gave birth to one of the worst insults one kid could give another–“You’re chicken!”

I read a story once, though, that made me realized that even chickens have their limits.

King Ahab distinguished himself as one of the sorriest kings Israel ever produced.

Dominated by his wife Jezebel, Israel prospered financially during his reign but he stood as an enemy to God.

Once several other kings came against his city, Samaria, to ravage it. The king of the attackers was called Ben-Haddad. Someone suggested that his name could probably be translated, “Son of Thunder.”

His thundering threats caused a whole lot of shaking to go on inside of Ahab. “Then he sent messengers into the city to Ahab king of Israel, and said to him, “Thus says Ben-Hadad: ‘Your silver and your gold are mine; your loveliest wives and children are mine.’”

And the king of Israel clucked, “My lord, O king, just as you say, I and all that I have are yours.” (1 Kings 20:2 NKJV). That demand might have pleased Ahab if his enemy had taken Jezebel in the bargain.

A few hours later, messages came from the Thunder King demanding even more.

But even chickens like Ahab have their limits, “Therefore he said to the messengers of Ben-Hadad, “Tell my lord the king, ‘All that you sent for to your servant the first time I will do, but this thing I cannot do.’” (1 Kings 20, 9 NKJV)

A prophet of the Living God spoke to the Chicken king. For once he obeyed and strode out and sent the Thunder King packing, winning a victory worth crowing about.

He did it again the next Spring.

For Ahab, it was downhill from then on as he returned to his disobedient ways. But, at least once he had proved that even chickens have their limits.

Do You and I Have Our Limits?

I cackle with judgment watching Ahab’s cowardly ways, but what about me?

Do I ever complain and complain and complain without doing what I can to change the situation?

Do I ever read God’s promises as if they were sweet fairy tales, ignoring the power in them?

Do I ever let the devil bluster and threaten and run over me?

Does even this chicken have his limits?

And you?

Maybe it is time to stop running and strap on our armor. We have God’s promise. Fight back against the enemy.

“The truth is that, although of course we lead normal human lives, the battle we are fighting is on the spiritual level. The very weapons we use are not those of human warfare but powerful in God’s warfare for the destruction of the enemy’s strongholds. Our battle is to bring down every deceptive fantasy and every imposing defence that men erect against the true knowledge of God. We even fight to capture every thought until it acknowledges the authority of Christ.” (2 Corinthians 10:3-5 J.B. Phillips)

Are you stumbling around clucking in fear? Maybe it’s time to get up, put on your battle gear, and head out to war.

Inspired by God’s promise, you will win.


Hmmm …

“Men may spurn our appeals, reject our message, oppose our arguments, despise our persons, but they are helpless against our prayers.”

― J. Sidlow Baxter


My memory’s not as sharp as it used to be. Also, my memory’s not as sharp as it used to be. ~ ~ ~ Know how to prevent sagging? Just eat till the wrinkles fill out. ~ ~ ~ It’s scary when you start making the same noises As your coffee maker. ~ ~ ~


I don’t want to brag or make anyone jealous or anything, but I can still fit into the socks I wore in high school.

Images: Flickr, Creative Commons, Len Matthews Psalm 23;

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Don’t Miss Superman (or woman) in You!

I know you young people feel sorry for older ones like me when you see gray hair (or no hair) and wrinkles sprouting up like Spring wildflowers in the mountains.

Don’t waste your sorrow.  We’ve lived through a lot of things you’ll never experience. Some really cheesy television, for example.

When I was seven or eight years old, I used to love the adventures of Superman on tv. Sometimes I’ll flash back to the past on You Tube and watch part of an episode.

These days those, I kind of cringe and laugh. You’d have to be eight-years old to take any of that seriously.

The thing I couldn’t understand about Superman, though, was why he didn’t let people know who he was. Louis Lane would have been impressed if she had known that the milk-toast colleague that she ran around with, reporter Clark Kent, was the mighty Superman.

As a matter of fact, old Lois must have been a bit slow between the ears because even the eight-year old version of me saw that Clark Kent looked a lot like Superman.

A lot like Superman.

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