Zechariah 8:23 “This is what the Lord Almighty says: ‘In those days ten men from all languages and nations will take firm hold of one Jew by the hem of his robe and say, ‘Let us go with you, because we have heard that God is with you,’”
God promises a time when people will be begging to go to church with us! People will finally awaken to their need of God, their desires will change and they will pursue Him by asking us where to find Him! Be ready for this!
Already, I have people stopping me in the grocery stores to talk to me or ask questions about where items can be found. I had this happen twice this weekend in two different stores. I stop what I am doing and purposely talk with strangers. Who knows where the conversation will lead? One time I got to pray with a woman in Walmart for her handicapped granddaughter. The woman was showing me pictures of the girl on her cell phone!
Be available at all times to share Christ, pray, stop what you are doing and talk to strangers! Remember Jesus who chatted with a woman at the well about a simple drink of water and how that lead to her conversion.
Last night a few people from 2 churches gathered around the Musicians at their instruments at RED and sang in unity "The Lord has Given Us Freedom, Given Us Freedom, Given Us Joy"
As we sang that I felt an amazing Joy like a bubbly spring of water rising up. THe Joy of the Lord is our strength. Nehemiah 8:10 says: "Then he said to them, “Go your way, eat the fat, drink the sweet, and send portions to those for whom nothing is prepared; for this day is holy to our Lord. Do not sorrow, for the joy of the Lord is your strength.”
In the story before getting to this verse, the people had asked the Prophet Ezra to read the Laws of Moses to them. They eagerly sat around the Prophet and Elders who helped them to understand the scriptures. As they heard the Words written in the Scrolls they wept with conviction and in worship they bowed down with their faces to the ground. Nehemiah then told them what we read in verse 10: "Do not be sad, instead rejoice for the JOY of the Lord is your strength."
I believe last night I saw, yet again, a beautiful picture of God's freedom. As we worship and HEAR the word of the Lord we are brought to humility and then the Lord fills us with Joy which strengthens us to continue the journey set before us.
May you continue to hunger after God's amazing presence and that your JOY may be full!! Worship Him and see the Glory of God.
Church attendance is not just a modern day issue it goes back to the early church. Paul had to tell the church not to stop getting together. Now they were not going to "church" because of FEAR of persecution. Today in America we do not suffer religious persecution to the level that the early church suffered it. But the most common excuse people give for not going to church is: Drum roll, please: "Other people". The true test to our spirituality comes when we assemble (Go to church or get-together). In the face of mean-ness, unappreciation, disrespect, and rejection we know how truly spiritual we are.
I have been guilty of fleeing from "the assembly" for fear of pain. But Paul reminds us that we should embrace being together with God’s people. We can try to be holy or we can let Jesus make us holy. His making is in the field, while we are busy, not while we are at home with no one to provoke us.
Is this a form of punishment? No, it is discipleship. We all, at some point, have had to be among those who reject us, talk about us, are mean-spirited with us or have dishonored us but the victory is that we STAND. Just you being there and allowing the Love of God to lead you is a victory for you. Determine to be an encourager, an exhorter and you may not even notice others bad attitudes any more.
My heart bleeds for people who allow the enemy to use them but I understand that they are in the dark about some things. I simply have to accept this as a test for me…for my growth. Someday, they will have to face the consequences for their actions, And I will be there to bless them and not judge them. -by Brisy Ortiz