Friday, August 27, 2010

August 28, 2010

"If my people, which are called by my name, shall humble themselves, and pray, and seek my face, and turn from their wicked ways; then will I hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin, and will heal their land." II Chronicles 7:14
I will be late posting today because at 6:00 a.m. this morning I will be boarding a bus for DC to attend the 8/28 Restoring Honor Rally on the National Mall in front of the Lincoln Memorial. There will be hundreds of thousands of concerned Americans gather to call on God and humble ourselves before Him.
Please time some time to pray between the hours of 10:00 a.m. and 1:00 p.m. Let's see what God will do!
I will have a full report this evening when I return.
Well, I'm back from a great day with 500,000 of my closest friends! God WAS honored and all the things that make America a great nation were celebrated. You could not be there and not be proud to be an American!
What happens from here remains to be seen. The skeptical side of me says that a vast majority of those who gave up a Saturday and came across the nation to attend this event are likely people who possess a hugh level of virtue and character already. Glenn Beck probably was preaching to the choir for the most part, but all of us can use of reminder and need to be challenged to do what we know to be right.
His message that only God can restore America is the truth and he is the only high profile media person I know of who is saying that. The primary reason I went was to support his courage in taking that stand.
Honor will be restored one person at a time as each decides to honor God and live a moral life. God has saved our nation before, He can do it again. It just takes some faithful people who commit to honor him with their lives and who refuse to be bought, bargained with, or belittled by foes. They will remain faithful to God and to the
Will you be one of those?

August 27, 2010

Before I post the devotional thought this morning, I want to wish my youngest son, Marcus, a happy birthday. My baby boy turns 32 today. He is a great dad and hard-working young man. I am proud of him and love him very much!
"Therefore confess your sins to each other and pray for each other so that you may be healed. The prayer of a righteous man is powerful and effective." James 5:16
Let me ask you a question. Is there something more important than healing in the church?
I guess it matters what your priorities are.
But, if I understand what James is telling us here, God values spiritual health above physical health. And if I am understanding the Scriptures correctly (and that's my job) God is saying that is easier for Him to heal your body than it is to give you spiritual health.
What are you talking about, Brad?
Let me explain it this way. Were I to ask, "How many of you would like physical healing?" I would imagine I would recieve unanimous agreement.
Were I to ask, "How many of you want to be spiritually healthy" I am not so sure I would get such an enthusiastic response.
See, God can heal you physically because He is able and you are willing. But for you to be spiritually healthy you must surrender your will completely to Him and humbly obey Him. The same will that would allow Him to heal you physically might prevent Him from blessing you with spiritual health.
Spiritual health requires personal prayer. When you are troubled you share it with God in prayer. When you are happy, you praise Him with prayer and rejoicing. Essentially, what James is saying is that you and I must take personal responsibility for our personal spiritual health. Your spiritual and mental and emotional health is your responsibility (in cooperation with God).
Spiritual health also requires powerful prayer. What is powerful prayer? According to James, powerful prayer is the result of believers being completely honest before God and transparent with each other. Submitting to confession and accountability is the price for powerful prayer and spiritual health. Oh, by the way, something else happens too - physical healing!
Finally, spiritual health requires prevailing prayer. Prevailing prayer? James urges us to pray for those who are spiritually drifting and separated from God. You might call it intercessory prayer and you would be correct. But I want to tell you that when you combine personal prayer with powerful prayer you get prevailing prayer and God's Spirit moves on people! Especially, lost people!
So, physical healing is easier than spiritual health. They are related but they are not the same. Fortunately, you can have both!
If we can have both why then do churches often have neither?
Frankly, it is because we would rather be happy than holy. We would rather be comfortable than committed. We don't want to hold others accountable to be holy because their sins and shortcomings make us feel more comfortable with our own. Honestly, we are more comfortable with our sins than we are with His Spirit. We are more comfortable with our secrets than with His sanctifying presence.
So, you wonder why there are so many struggling Christians and unhealthy churches?
Go figure........