Author Archives: if4es

About if4es

I am a member of the International Fellowship for Everyday Saints and am announcing immediate forgiveness for extreme sinners. It is Good News! "Because of the increase of lawlessness, the love of most will freeze to death, but the one who stands firm to the end will be saved. This good news of the Kingdom will be announced in the entire inhabited world as a testimony to all nations ... and then the end will come" - Jesus. This is the goal I aim for.

A Cry

Torn between right and wrong,
I find myself dancing a wayward song
I find myself weak, though once strong.

Torn down, abandoned and forsaken by myself
and all my friends, my foes, yet not God Himself.
I take His dusty book off of the shelf.

I find my way has wandered far
I wanted to be among the stars
I wanted to claim a noble heart.

Instead, I find I’ve forgotten joy.
I have forsaken truth for petty toys.
I have ignored His Word and heeded noise.

God, leave me not alone.
Hear my aches and pains and groans.
Shine upon my heart and strengthen weary bones.

Lord, lift me up upon Your cross
Let me rise with you and count this life as loss.
Let not my sleep disappear amid the storms that toss.

If that is you, I dare to ask,
Call me forward in a simple task.
Let me drink deep the Supper’s fruity flask.

Let love again hold up my soul.
Let truth again make me pure and whole.
Let your Spirit reach each part and make me full.

Tears wash away my vanity.
Tears waste away my veil of sanity.
Tars soil my claim to chastity.

A deep stain exposes the wretchedness of my eyes.
A deep pain reveals the confusion of my cries.
A deeply planted grain grows out of the depths of mind.

Faith that the Word of God remains true.
Hope that the resurrection of Jesus applies to me and you.
Love that changes my life and impatient, cruel view.

Categories: Poem, Prayer, Testimony | Tags: , , , , , | Leave a comment

More Than Dreams

http://morethandreams.org/

The Video series More than Dreams describes the lives of several people who dreamed dreams that evidently came from the Creator and altered their lives. If you wish to learn how God speaks to people today, visit the sight and watch as 5 people have their lives transformed by Truth.

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Some years ago, I also had a dream that altered my life permanently. I suppose some would attend to my description of seeing Jesus risen from the grave and take this as evidence, but I prefer to boast of how the vision of the Lord who Loves has changed my life.

There have been days when I have been kicked and spat at. Still, I chose to love those who would want to be my enemies.

There have been days when I had no money and needed money for rent. Still, I chose to thank God for His provision.

There have been days when I was sick and alone in the hospital, despised and rejected. Still, I chose to encourage my neighbor because I had hope in the one who raises the dead.

There have been days when I was accused of violating social norms. Still, I chose to share the word of Christ and live in light of eternity, rather than just live for today.

There have been days when I labored all day and did not receive any short term gain. Still, I looked to the Lord of Heaven and He rewarded me and provided for my daily bread.

There have been days I have had to go hungry for long periods and days when I have politely eaten more than enough. Still, I have learned to be content in the Messiah as my meat and my mind's fullness.

There have been days when no one wanted to talk to me. Still, I listened to the hurting and crying and cried out to God on behalf of the nations.

There have been days when I could not get out of bed or have been run through extreme tests in the labs. Still, I remember my brothers and sisters who are persecuted for righteousness sake.

There have been days when I wondered when my hopes and goals would be fulfilled. Still, I labored on and journeyed on towards my goal.
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How are we able to persevere despite much difficulty and opposition and labor?
Only by grace.

Grace is essentially the presence of Jesus in our lives. He never leaves us and never forsakes us and never abandons us. Jesus walks with us to the end; by faith we walk with Him if we keep in step with the Spirit.

Perhaps my favorite verse in all the Bible that sustains me in hard times is that Grace is enough for you for power is perfected in weakness.

Yes, I have had visions. I have seen mighty and powerful answers to prayer that shook the heavens. I have seen provision come in amazing ways. I have talked to many people and traveled to places that are only dots on the map to most people. But it is grace, God's rich grace, that sustains me.

The Lord continually nourishes me with His Word. Do you have this assurance that speaks to you in the watches of the night and in the heat of the day? Do you tune into the Truth 24/7 or do you tune into the world's channels? Do you listen to the voice of the Lord or are you distracted by the world's voices? Does the devil drive you like a goatherd or are you moved by the Spirit of the Living God?

"Jesus, speak to me today, tonight, tomorrow, and to eternity. Let me see Your glorious and gracious face that I might be changed to be more and more like you. You, Lord, are my friend. Since you are the Friend of Sinners, I must confess that I am a sinner. I trust that You not only died for my sins, but that You rose to grant me new life. You have seen my adultery, my hastiness, my wastefulness, my adulteries, my lies, my theft, my pride, and my impatience. I look to You, Lord Jesus to remove all those and grant me a perfect integrity that comes from You alone. Father in Heaven, we praise Your name for Your faithful mercy, which is renewed daily. In the name of the Prince of peace, Who is our Comfort and Who has sent us the Comforting Holy Spirit we pray. Amen."

Categories: Good News, Suffering, Testimony | Tags: , , , , | Leave a comment

Let God Be True

A key proverb in the New Testament is: Let God be true, & every man a liar.

First, some definitions: There is one God. The word for man includes men and women, young and old. True implies completely trustworthy; liar means not 100% truthful.

This is perhaps one of the most difficult truths to grasp. We are told as children to always tell the truth. Honorable parents discipline their children when they tell lies. And then comes the day when we tell a lie and get away with it. Then there comes the day we realize everyone tells partial truths, half truths, and outright fabrications … even when they are trying to tell the whole truth and nothing but the truth.

It seems the only way we can really trust someone is if they are willing to die for what they believe and insist upon.

Most people are a little shy of death. Death is not our friend. We have defeated the fear of death when we tell the truth and worry not one bit about what people will do to us if we tell the truth.

The difference between a wise truth teller and a foolish truth teller is that a foolish one will tell you everything they know to be true. A wise person has a filter. The wise purify their speech. When we say everything that comes to mind that has factual value, people will not value their time listening to us.

If however, we listen to others and prove that God listens even better by praying with that person then the person with whom we converse will be free to listen to the truths that we share. When God gets into the conversation, He is able to speak life. If we are merely speaking from our own hearts, we are liable to deceive ourselves and our hearers and be led astray. But God is love and He is able to teach us to love.

So what if someone says they love us? We can receive this love as a gift from God or as a gift primarily from the other person. If we look primarily to the other person for love, we are sure to be disappointed, for their love is finite and limited. If we look to the Lord for love, our face will brighten, for He is able to love us even when we are completely unlovable. He will also enable us to love others, even when they disappointment.

People are not always friendly. Sometimes they can be outright hostile. An enemy can even be found in our own best earthly friends, even our spouses and parents and children. Why? Why is it that close family and friends can sometimes be so hard to get along well with, and why sometimes those we trust most disappoint us most?

Is it not because we are called not to trust others nearly in the same way we are called to trust God? Our trust towards God should be 100% and perfect. In fact, human trust in God is limited most of the time. Our trust is made complete in our dying. Even Jesus’ trust was perfected when he breathed out His last, “Into Your hands I commit my Spirit!” The Lord brought perfect peace by dying in perfect peace.

His trust was vindicated by when Jesus rose from the dead 3 days later as He had prophesied and communicating His message once again to his students and urging them to wait for the Promise.

God kept His promise and gave the Promised Holy Spirit. The only way we are able to keep our word is by abiding in the Holy Spirit. If a person is truly seeking out ultimate reality, they will have to conclude that for there to be any meaning there must be a God who raises the dead and judges our lives, rewarding us for what we have done. This God is trustworthy, He alone is the One called Truth, and all He speaks is true. He has come into the world and has spoken to us not only of His law, but has shone forth His light and given us life that we might walk in love together, thus we find liberty, which the law is intended to describe.

If a person rejects the law of God, they will end up rejecting God’s purpose for their lives and tending towards death and purposelessness. Yes, they may prosper greatly, but they live only for a few dozen years and then they vanish and perish.

If a person receives the law as a token of God’s love, they will shine forth the light to the nations. The love which they received will be shared freely and God’s kingdom will advance. Such a person will find their purpose perseveres into eternity.

The person who builds his life on God as True will be founded on Truth and will help others find truth. Such a person confesses freely that they are not the epitome of truth, but Jesus is, the King of the Jews who came from Nazareth.

The person who builds his own life will be proven to be a lie in the end and will have shaky, unreliable foundations. Violence is their means of accomplishing their will. Lust is the only way they know love. Deceit is their default communication, all of which is corrupt. They delight in sin and dark is their light. Doom is their destiny. Less is their hope.

Oh, the delight of those who seek peace and pursue it! Blessed are all who know the truth and do it!!

“Lord, help me speak the truth and let me also always love all. Rob me of my fear and clothe me with your faith and boldness that I might rest within your peace at all times.”

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Bridge-Burning, Bridge-Building, and Wall-Building

A boy once lived through a river crossing. The waters receded and the ground became dry and the people crossed. But a few people stayed in the middle, stranded on high places in the river. They lived on islands in the middle of a grand, wide river.

As the boy grew up, he noticed the people in the middle. When he became a man, he longed to cross the stream again to bring more people across. He dreamed of just the right bridges and how to reach those on the other side and those on the islands.

He lived at the edge of the river and build a few walls for his home and then began planning to reach those on the islands and those on the other side. He watched their habits. He waved at people on the islands and on the other side, and he one day noticed that if he stepped into the stream a little and asked for help, he could reach the islands nearby. He would visit the people and talk to them. Sometimes people received him, sometimes they didn’t.

The budding bridge-builder would bring food and the fruit of the land to those on the islands. He gave them things to read to pass their time with joy. A few crossed over and left their islands, and joy filled his heart. All of his friends and family received the newly landed people and he was happy.

Gradually, he invited others to help him build bridges to those further out on the islands. He would look for the best place to land the bridge and visited with gifts of peace. On occasion he found islands where people had built walls all around the islands like fortresses and who refused to cross over or even to greet him. He pressed on and went to the islands that were accessible.

Sometimes he would build a bridge to an islander and the person attacked him. When this happened, he put up a gate on the island bridge to protect himself and the other incorporated citizens. Then, he moved on to build more bridges.

On rare occasion, he found islanders who would receive him freely at first, but later would burn all the bridges to their island. While he never understood why people would stay on the islands, he refused to muddle in the river weeping forever over the bridges that could have been and would venture out to new islands.

He kept finding new islands. Occasionally, he would even call out to those on the other side and would send a boat to retrieve those who wanted to cross. Yes, there is danger in bringing people safely to land. Yes, it is a life prone to long hours alone reaching islands and reaching out to the other side, but every time someone rejoined the people of the land and the rejoicing went up, the labor was worth it.

So will you build bridges or burn them? Build brick walls with graffiti smiley faces or put in doors and windows, ready to open the gates when the time is right.

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More Precious than Gold

(1 Peter 1:7 & 1 Corinthians 13:13)

 

Chorus

May the ‘gold’ of El Dorado, be found above the ground.

May the ‘gold’ of El Dorado, be revealed to us in time.

May the ‘gold’ of El Dorado, be pure from day to day.

May the ‘gold’ of El Dorado, really start to shine.

 

Faith costs far more than man’s gold.

Faith transforms all the earth.

Faith cost Jesus His own life.

Faith is called the new birth.

Holy Spirit, fill hearts with faith.

We believe, we believe all the way.

Chorus

 

We have hope for tomorrow.

We have hope for the town.

We have hope for our children.

We have hope to go around.

Jesus promised us that He would stay

We have hope, we have hope all the way.

Chorus

 

We will love all our families.

We will love all our friends.

We will love those who hate us.

We will love until the end.

God sent His son so that He could save.

We will love, we will love all the way.

Chorus

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Perseverance Song

Why do I keep holdin’ on, holdin’ on to Jesus?

All around these things are slippin’ on and on away.

Both day and night are dark and gloomy, filled with drear.

Jesus’ Name, still makes me want to worship and to pray

‘Til he draws me close and draws me up so very near.

Cause He keeps holdin’ on, keeps holdin’ on to me!

And he’ll keep keepin’ on, keep keepin’ on with you!

 

Why do I keep walking on, keep walking on with Jesus?

Jesus seems to go too fast, and other times too slow

I want to run ahead, but then I got catch my breath with Christ

Where exactly do we plan to let the path to go?

But I’ll let Him pay my aweful, final price,

Cause He kept walking on, kept walking on for me!

And he’ll keep keepin’ on, keep keepin’ on with you!

 

Why do I keep lookin’ on, lookin’ on to Jesus?

I look beyond horizons when skies are lookin’ dim.

I gaze beyond the moonset, when mournin’ ain’t to fun,

But He looked beyond my frets, past the dark within.

He suffered on that cross, though there was no Sun,

Cause He’ll keep looking out, keep lookin’ out for me!

And He’ll keep keepin’ on, keep keeping on with you!

 

Why do I keep standing up, keep standin’ up for Jesus?

I face the roughest storms in the coldest, hardest days.

I’ve climbed the high old hills against the hottest harshest wind.

But he climbed a deadly hill against the hateful storm.

He stood again the third day, so I will stand with Him,

Cause He’ll keep standin’ up, standing up for me!

And He’ll keep keepin’ on, keep keepin’ on with you!

 

Yeah He’ll keep holdin’ on, holdin’ on to you.

Yeah He’ll keep walkin’ on, walkin’ on with me.

Yeah He’ll keep lookin’ out, lookin’ out for you.

Yeah He’ll keep standin’ up, standin’ up for me . . .

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Tangled Roots & Broken Branches

Opening up history and genealogy
unleashes a panoply of potential terror:
diving deep to see where we come from
in hopes of seeing where we will go.
Digging up roots and truths we really didn’t want to know.
Facing lies that unleash monsters of the past
into our present fascade.
Feeling intrigued and put off … kind of odd,
wanting to dig deeper, yet grieving at the loss of innocence.
Looking up, broken branches loom,
Rotten, bitter fruit
and mushrooms scatter on the ground-
a reminder that they feed on death,
out here in the wild.
Suddenly, I simply want to be a child
simple and free,
certainly not so guilty,
I just want to be loved for being me.
shame and fear loom overhead in the forest of the nations, as well as in the untended garden of peace,
fears and tears are slowly released,
and as they fall,
the stains upon the dim reflection wash away the grime
the crime of days gone by, and I behold,
The promises offered from the Eternal One to ancient fathers
I never knew … is it true?
I am a child of God.

A cutting to the core, torn away and grafted in,
Will I ever know the life-giving flow of life again?
The Gardner wraps me in His tender care.
Bound to His favored tree, he tends to me,
so I reach out to Him, my initial fruit is a simple hymn
The Anointed One is Risen!
He calls my name …
Master!
Love, unspoiled, whole, complete,
The past is trodden underneath His feet.
I want to cling, but run to meet
the fellowship of family united in the promised Seed.
Bitter tears are replaced with pleasant praise
Now I can stand tall and reach up for happy days
The King shall be touched by our fruit upon His head.
Christ is risen from the dead!!

Categories: Environmental Healing, Poem, Suffering | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Peace, where there is no peace.

Peace!

I greet the world

and saints and angels,

yet torment greets me.

Undeserved injustice!

My only comfort seems distant

beyond the furthest horizon,

so I will go there

and wait

and go again

until my spirit rests

within the realm of our Father.

Then Love and I

will leave

this world

and go home.

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Job: Cursed Work or Blessed Service

A job is a source of great travail and trouble;
“J.ust O.ver B.roke,” by some accounts,
yet near enough to feel the pangs of hunger.
Driven on by some invisible quest for significance
or trying to work the wa up the trickster’s ladder to God’s throne room
or slaving to please the closest Eve who insists
that the land east of Eden not be left to thorns and thistles.
So the sod buster, dandelion hunter, tree trimmer
putters around his personal paradise
muttering about the myopic vision of yard maintenance.

Then the sun begins to set, evening fades, and he realizes
he has been in the presence of God.
Not quite walking in the cool of the eve as man once did,
But unashamed, he lays down his tools, washes his hands,
as he pursues some just desserts.
Quietly, he gratefully tastes ice cream
and is glad that his wishes are heard.
He whispers petitions for precipitation, prosperity, and planetary peace.
He wanders calmly home in comfortable weather,
The clouds draped over the starry portals
Yet the veil is torn.
Love is celebrated in a simple meal and evening nap.

Dreams return, age accumulates,
and all the routines must be recycled,
seasons sprinkled with grace,
and love beheld face to face.
The curse is lifted as the cross is embraced
No longer serving self
But blessed as the book of life is dusted off the shelf.
(A revelation praise song erupts that I am not permitted to record here.)

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Divided Loves: Neighbor or Nobody

I have a choice: I love my neighbor as

myself, or love not one, not even

self. To love my neighbor, I will love

myself, yet there is more: I must be seen

by others as a neighbor for my love

to be received, and I must love my fellow

man for my words to be believed. For as

I give, I also get. Like body smells

exchanged in the embrace, or tones in jazz

that trade their lines–a gentle harmony;

an open dance of handshakes, reverent hugs,

and people wishing one another well.

“Now do to them as you yourself desire!”

Is what emerges from Love’s holy fire.

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