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Pastor's Message

Days of the Holy Spirit
Renew Godly Passion

January 2009

Dear Friends,

Who can believe it, here we are in 2009. The days are speeding up, certainly as I am heading towards my finish line, but also as this age is getting closer to its final days. We are living in glorious days. We were born for just such a time as this!!

As we start the new year, we are looking to the theme, the road, that the Lord has set before us this year. These are the Days of the Holy Spirit, and the days to Renew Godly Passion.

The Holy Spirit revealed these things to us, at the New Years Eve service in a powerful way. I would suggest getting the cd so that you can keep these things before you as we proceed down this road this year.

I want to talk with you today about what the Bible calls perilous times. These are days of perilous, difficult, stressful, grievous, hard to bear, distressing times. But these times are for the world, not for the Body of Christ. Some would ask, 'So what is the difference, we are living in this world and those things affect us?' That is a good question. We are in this world, but we are not of this world's system. Heaven is our country, and it is the country of citizenship that meets our needs. This is why it is so important, especially as the days draw nearer to the end, that we function in the economy of heaven, called faith.

When Jesus was on the earth He spoke of two particular cases in which He said there was "great faith." One of them was recorded by Matthew in the eighth chapter of His Gospel. v5-8 "And when Jesus entered Capernaum, a centurion came to Him, imploring Him, and saying, "Lord, my servant is lying paralyzed at home, fearfully tormented." Jesus said to him, "I will come and heal him." But the centurion said, "Lord, I am not worthy for You to come under my roof, but just say the word, and my servant will be healed. For I also am a man under authority, with soldiers under me; and I say to this one, 'Go!' and he goes, and to another, 'Come!' and he comes, and to my slave, 'Do this!' and he does it." Now when Jesus heard this, He marveled and said to those who were following, "Truly I say to you, I have not found such great faith with anyone in Israel." (New American Standard)

There are certain earmarks to this great faith.
1- This is the centurion that helped to build a synagogue for the Jews.
2- As a Roman soldier it was not the popular thing to build a synagogue, or to go to Jesus, a Jew, and a religious person. But the centurion chose the right thing over the popular thing.
3- He loved his servant. He had a high regard for human life.
4- He believed in the power of words. All of these things working in the centurion's life caused Jesus to marvel at his great faith.

The next instance we find also in the book of Matthew, the fifteenth chapter. v22-28 "And a Canaanite woman from that region came out and began to cry out, saying, "Have mercy on me, Lord, Son of David; my daughter is cruelly demon-possessed." But He did not answer her a word. And His disciples came and implored Him, saying, "Send her away, because she keeps shouting at us." But He answered and said, "I was sent only to the lost sheep of the house of Israel." But she came and began to bow down before Him, saying, "Lord, help me!" And He answered and said, "It is not good to take the children's bread and throw it to the dogs." But she said, "Yes, Lord; but even the dogs feed on the crumbs which fall from their masters' table." Then Jesus said to her, "O woman, your faith is great; it shall be done for you as you wish." And her daughter was healed at once." (New American Standard)

Let's look at the earmarks of her faith.
1- She did not fear inferiority. She certainly felt it, but did not allow it to decide what she could or could not have. Her want was greater than what she felt. The closer she got to Jesus and the Jews, the greater those feelings of inferiority rose to the surface. Yet she chose to push past the emotions and feelings.
2- She recognized the power of God, therefore, she did not despair in herself and her own lack of ability to bring about the needed results. She knew the place to go for power to be released.
3- She came before the Lord with humility and worship. Refusing to be offended by what Jesus said, which by the way, was truth, she continued to press in. Jesus' statement could very easily have caused her to allow those feelings of inferiority to take over and leave without her answer.

Has the Word of God ever offended you? Cause you to get defensive? Make you rationalize, and justify yourself? Has your feelings of inferiority made you lash out, or did you override those feelings and continue to press in humbly in worship of your Lord?

4- Because she refused to take offense, this woman kept her focus on the bigger prize.
5- She said the right thing at the right time. That is wisdom that got Jesus' attention and caused Him to call her faith great.

In these days of perilous, stressful, difficult times in the world, we need to remember these qualities of great faith. Like the centurion;
a- Be involved with the things God is doing.
b- Do what is right, not what is popular.
c- Regard life, believe in the power of words.

Like the Canaanite woman, remember these qualities;
a- Don't fear and be directed by inferiority. Those are lies of the devil to keep you out of your promises.
b- Recognize, don't just hope for, the power of God.
c- Come before the Lord humbly and with worship
d- Refuse to be offended. It is only flesh that gets offended. But humility keeps the flesh under and the spirit in ascendancy.
e- Speaking the wisdom of God's Word always gets His attention. He is always looking for living faith.

It is 2009. We have never lived in these days before. The past is past, our future is before us. We can press into it by faith, directed by the Holy Spirit, and have a Godly passion that refuses to quit. If God is for us, who can be against us? God is on our side. His purposes cannot be thwarted. No weapon formed against us will prosper.

If you are thinking the pressures of life are great, then it certainly is time to develop in great faith!!!

Until next month, have a healthy, prosperous, blessed, holy, soul increasing, promises manifesting year!! You are destined for it!!!!!

Pastor Bob