just a thought

aaronlinford

Rev. Aaron Linford

THE BREATH OF LIFE

 

There is a paradox of Christian experience in the terms “Spirit in you” (cf Rom 8:9) and “you in Spirit” (Rev 1:10). But this is resolved by analogy of the atmosphere that surrounds us.

THE BREATH OF LIFE OUTSIDE. The air we live in is ubiquitous, it surrounds our whole environment. It carries the essential of life, oxygen; it receives our output of carbon dioxide: thus completing the cycle of life. It exerts pressure, it produces climate, it absorbs meteoric attacks, it shields us from harmful rays from outer space. So we “live, and move, and have our being” (Acts 17:28), surrounded by the Spirit’s omnipresence His nearness ministers the essentials of spiritual life, protects us from alien forces, presses our spirits with awareness of His holy presence. Christians live and walk “in the Spirit” (Gal 5:25).

THE BREATH OF LIFE WITHIN. Physically, we have the ability and the capacity to breathe in the life-sustaining air. So with the Holy Spirit: He surrounds us, but He can also fill us. But we must breathe in the holy air. Our spiritual life depends on this inspiration. In fact the double-action of respiration, the inbreathing and the outbreathing of God is life indeed. We take of Him; we tell of Him; this breath of life creates and preserves in us our spirituality.

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illustrations that light up life

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Rev. E. Anderson

NEVER STOP LEARNING

Taken from the Word for Today

‘…you need someone to teach you…’ Hebrews 5: 12

MARLENE LEFEVER quipped, ‘Becoming an effective teacher is simple. You just prepare and prepare until drops of blood appear on your forehead.’

In the 1920s Charlie Chaplin was the most famous person in the world. Bom into poverty, he worked on the stage to support himself and by the age of 17 he was a veteran performer. Then at the age of 29 he did something unheard

of: he signed the entertainment industry’s first million-dollar contract. But he wasn’t successful simply because he had talent and drive. He was also teachable. He kept learning and perfecting his gift Even at the height of his career, the highest paid performer in the world didn’t rest on his laurels.

He said: When I watch one of my pictures, I pay attention to what the audience doesn’t laugh at If several audiences don’t laugh at a stunt, I tear it apart and try to discover what’s wrong. On the other hand, if I hear laughter I hadn’t expected I ask myself why that thing rang the bell with the audience’.

The truth is, if Charlie Chaplin had replaced with complacency and arrogance we wouldn’t even remember his name today he didn’t He never forgot the basics and committed himself to learning Eventually he founded United Artists, a mega-movie that’s still in business today

There’s an principle in this story The Bible says, by this time you ought to be teachers you someone to teach you the elementary God s Word all over again If you want God to you, stay teachable and never stop learning.

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miracles and healing testimonies

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Rev. E. Anderson

HEALING MIRACLES DURING MEETINGS

MIRACULOUS healings that have taken place during a series of meetings in a church in Wales are being reported.

Thousands have visited Victory Church in Cwmbran since regular meetings started in April.

The event has been dubbed the ‘Welsh Outpouring’ as people have told how they have been healed of various health problems

One of those is Lisa Hall, who had struggled with hip pain for nearly ten years and was unable to work.

She used a walking stick and had to take morphine every two hours.

VANISHED

Lsa attended the Outpouring in May and claims the pain vanished that night.

She recalled the night she believes she was heated when one of the church’s pastors, Clyde Thomas, asked her why she was there.

“I came so that Jesus would heal my hip,” Lisa told New Life. “I didn’t know what was coming out of my mouth, I wasn’t expecting to say that!

Pastor Clyde prayed for her and she says the pain instant vanished. “It took me until Wednesday – two days later – to call my best friend. I told her, ‘God healed my hip!’ My little boy, Josh, has got his mum back.

We were going up and down the stairs, which I hadn’t been able to do. It’s awesome. I’m in awe of what God has done.”

Vicky Jenkins also believes God healed her at Victory Church. She suffered from pain in her left wrist.

She said: “Last year, I had tendon problems with my nerves and my hand in my left wrist. I couldn’t use the hand, so it got weaker and weaker. I was off the worship team for ten months, and the hospital said it would be permanent.

“Pastor Clyde prayed for me and the next day I picked up a knife and cut a cheese sand­wich! I’m grateful. It has an impact on everything I do. From not being able to do anything, it makes a huge difference to me. I can do everything I’m meant to do.”

The Outpouring is being led by criminal turned pastor Richard Taylor.

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great stories

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Rev. E. Anderson

EVERYBODY DOES ‘IT

by Jack Griffin

A boy knows what-he’s been taught. When Johnny was six years old, he was with his father when they were caught speeding. His father handed the officer his driver’s licence. ‘It’s okay, son,’ his father said as they drove off. ‘Everybody does it.’

When he was eight, he was permitted at a family council, presided over by Uncle George, on the surest means to shave points off the income tax return. ‘It’s okay, kid,’ his uncle said. ‘Everybody does it.’

When he was nine, his mother took him to his first concert. The ticket agency man couldn’t find any seats until his mother discovered an extra ten pounds in her purse. ‘It’s okay, son,’ she said. ‘Everybody does it.’

When he was twelve, he broke his glasses on the way to school. His Aunt Francine persuaded the insurance company that they had been stolen and they collected £27. ‘It’s okay, kid,’ she said. ‘Everybody does it.’

When he was fifteen, he became right defence on the school football team. His coach showed him how to block and at the same time grab the opposing end by the shirt so the official couldn’t see it. ‘It’s okay, kid,’ the coach said. ‘Everybody does it.’

When he was sixteen, he took his first summer job at the big market. His assignment was to put the over-ripe tomatoes in the bottom of the boxes and the good ones on top where they would show. ‘It’s okay, kid,’ the manager said. “Everybody does it.’

When he was eighteen, Johnny and a neighbour applied for a college scholarship. Johnny was a marginal student. His neighbour was in the upper three per cent of his class, but he couldn’t play right defence. Johnny got the position. ‘It’s okay,’ they told him. ‘Everybody does it.’

When he was nineteen, he was approached by an upper class-mate who offered the exam answers for three pounds. ‘It’s okay, kid,’ he said. ‘Everybody does it.’

Johnny was caught and sent home in disgrace. ‘How could you do this to your mother and me?’ his father said. ‘You never learned anything like this at home.’ His aunt and uncle also were shocked. If there’s one thing the adult world can’t stand, it’s a kid who cheats.

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gospel nuggets

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Rev. E. Anderson

A GIFT FROM GOD

Joel Osteen

“For by grace you have been saved through faith, and that not of yourselves; it is the gift of God” – Ephesians 2: 8.

We serve such a generous and loving God. He loves you so much that there isn’t anything He wouldn’t do in order to have a relationship with you. The Bible tells us that sin separates man from God, but God doesn’t want to be separated from any of us. That’s why He sent Jesus into the world — to pay the penalty for sin so that we could live in eternity with Him

So many people today think they have to earn their way to heaven. They think they have to be “good enough” or “do the right thing” in order to be accepted by God. They want to “clean up” before they come to Him. But notice what today’s verse says — salvation is a gift from God. You can’t earn a gift. You don’t pay for it. You can only receive it by faith and say thank You. If you’ve never received Jesus as the Lord of your life, there’s no better time to receive this free gift. Let Him fill you with His peace and joy both now and throughout history.

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a time to laugh

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Rev. E. Anderson

A CHILD’S FUNNY

While taking a routine vandalism report at an elementary school, I was interrupted by a little girl about 6 years old. Looking up and down at my uniform, she asked, “Are you a cop?” “Yes,” I answered and continued writing the report. “My mother said if I ever needed help I should ask the police. Is that right?” “Yes, that’s right,” I told her. “Well, then,” she said as she extended her foot toward me, “would you tie my shoe?”

A TYPE-WRITER FUNNY

The boys had been up in the attic together helping with some cleaning. The kids uncovered an old manual typewriter and asked her, “Hey Mom, what’s this?” “Oh, that’s an old typewriter,” she answered, thinking that would satisfy their curiosity. “Well, what does it do?” they queried. “I’ll show you,” she said and returned with a blank piece of paper. She rolled the paper into the typewriter and began striking the keys, leaving black letters of print on the page. “WOW!” they exclaimed, “That’s really cool. But how does it work like that? Where do you plug it in?” “There is no plug,” she answered. “It doesn’t need a plug.” “Then where do you put the batteries?” they persisted. “It doesn’t need batteries either,” she continued. “Wow! This is so cool!” they exclaimed. “Someone should have invented this a long time ago!”

A FISHING FUNNY

A couple air-heads from warmer climes loved to fish, so they wanted to try ice fishing. They’d took off up to Canada and found a nice, big frozen lake with a little bait shop nearby where they got all their tackle – including a sturdy ice pick. About an hour later, one of them was back at the shop and bought another ice pick. In another hour the air-head was back, and said, “We’re going to need all the ice picks you got.” The bait man said, “Well, OK — How are you doing out there?” “Not very well at all,” said the air-head. “We don’t even have the boat in the water yet.”

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focus

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Rev. E. Anderson

QUEEN OF ORGANIZATION

“She gets up while it is still dark; she provides food for her family and portions for her servant girls. . . . She watches over the affairs of her household and does not eat the bread of idleness” – Proverbs 31:15,27

When you read about the woman in Proverbs 31, the one often described as die “wife of noble character” or the “virtuous woman,” you get the distinct impression that she was the epitome of the word organized.

There is absolutely no way in the world diat she could have taken care of every­thing in her life—her husband, her business, her investments, her employees, her children, her philanthropic interests, her health, and her community responsibilities—if she did not possess the ability to juggle numerous balls in a highly efficient manner.

We may not have as many responsibilities as she did, and it may not even be realistic to expect us to handle the ones we do have with such grace. We can, however, learn a couple of very valuable lessons from these verses that will help us juggle all the balls in our lives a little better.

First, she did not waste time. She got up early, stayed up late, and she didn’t par­ticipate in any non-productive, brainless activities. This was not a woman who spent several hours—or even one hour—a day watching soap operas. She didn’t flip on the TV at night and spend the evening watching mindless sitcoms with her children.

Second, she anticipated the needs of the people in her life. As a result, she didn’t have to spend her days rushing around, frantically trying to get things done at the last minute. She watched over the affairs of her household closely enough to know when supplies were running low and when tensions were beginning to escalate, and she was able to take steps to fix problems before they escalated into full-blown crises.

You may not have the organizational gifts that the Proverbs 31 woman had. But you will be much more effective—both at home and at work—if you intentionally stopped engaging in non-productive activities and started anticipating the needs of the people around you a little better. Try it—the results might surprise you!

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a message by the late rev david wilkerson

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David Wilkerson

THE BLESSINGS OF GOODNESS

“Thou preventest him with the blessings of goodness: thou settest a crown of pure gold on his head” (Psalm 21:3). At first glance, this verse by David is a bit puzzling. The word “prevent” is usually associated with hindrance, not with blessing. A modern translation here would be, “The Lord hindered David with the blessings of goodness.” The biblical word for “prevent” signifies a completely different meaning. It means “to anticipate, to precede, to foresee and fulfill in advance, to pay a debt before it is due.”

Furthermore, in almost every instance, it implies something of pleasure. Isaiah gives us a glimpse of this kind of pleasure when he explains that God anticipates our need and fulfills it ahead of time. “It shall come to pass, that before they call, I will answer; and while they are yet speaking, I will hear” (Isaiah 65:24). This verse provides us with an incredible picture of our Lord’s love for us.

Evidently He is so anxious to bless us, so ready to fulfill His lovingkindness in our lives, that He cannot wait for us to tell Him our needs. He jumps in and performs acts of mercy, grace and love toward us before we even ask—and that is a supreme pleasure to Him.

So this is just what David was saying in Psalm 21: “Lord, You pour out blessings and lovingkindness on me before I can even ask. And You offer more than I could ever conceive of asking.” David was referring to some awesome work that God performed for him in the spiritual realm. It was something that gave David answers to prayer, overcoming power, victory over his enemies, and unspeakable joy. And God did it all before David could go to prayer to unburden his heart or present his request.

Once David finally did pour out his heart, he discovered that God had already made provision to defeat his enemies. David’s victory was assured before he could even get near the battlefield!

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christian testimony

rock star Bono

BONO

IN THE NAME LOVE

He might be one of the biggest stars the music industry has ever produced, but Bono is also a man of faith, as

Matthew Murray discovered. ..

Rock star Bono has opened up about his Christian faith, declaring: “I pray to the risen Jesus.” The U2 frontman, also famous for his humanitarian and philanthropic work, revealed how he holds family prayer meetings and gets his inner strength from God.

Speaking to Irish TV station RTE One, Bono ~ real name Paul Hewson — says, “[l pray to] the risen Jesus. Jesus went aroundsaying he was the Messiah. That’s why he was crucified. He was crucified because he said he was the Son of God.

“So, in my view, he either was the Son of God, or he was nuts. And i find it hard to accept that millions and millions of lives, half the earth, for 2,000 years, have been touched, have felt their lives touched and inspired by some nutter. I just don’t believe it.”

The singer, 53, said his wife

Ali and their four children ~ Eve, Jordan, Elijah and John — share his Christian beliefs. “l pray to get to know the will of God, because then the prayers have more chance of coming true,” he says. “I mean, that’s the thing about – prayer.

”We don’t do it in a very lofty way in our family. It’s just a bunch of us on the

bed, usually ~ we’ve a very big bed in our house. We pray with all our kids, we read the Scriptures, we pray. We sometimes just slip into church and find

some peace and quiet and say our own prayers.”

Aside from his prolific music career, Bono is an avid social entrepreneur.

In 2002, he co-founded DATA, an AIDS and poverty awareness organisation that went on to form ‘ONE: The Campaign To Make Poverty History’.

His faith has been an ongoing factor in his advocacy work, and it even cropped up in the lyrics of some of his most famous U2 hits including ‘I Still Haven’t Found What I’m Looking For’, ‘Tomorrow’ and ‘The Wanderer’.

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pastor’s weekly thought

ianwilliams

Rev. Ian Williams

TURNING POINTS

Robin Hart

Operation Overlord had been months in the planning. Thousands of mens’ lives, the liberation of one country, the potential liberation of many more, the defeat of Nazi Germany and the axis powers in Europe, the timing of the sweep across Western Europe to link with the Russian army coming in from the East, the hope and expectation of the Allies, all the months of preparations including troop movements, training, supplies, armaments, hardware, intelligence gathering and sending, I could go on … all depended on the decision of one man, Eisenhower.

The weather forecast had been iffy and the landings has already been postponed once already but Eisenhower knew now that the combination of tides, weather conditions, troop readiness and the confusion of the enemy meant one thing …it was time to go.   Seventy years ago, June 6th 1944 was a pivotal turning point of the Second World War. D-Day was the start of a campaign that was to gain momentum and push the enemy back, ultimately culminating in victory.  

We experience our own turning points in our own Christian walk. Jon listed a number of turning points – I only have space for one, but you can listen to the rest on the RLC Podcast.   Turning Point Number One: The decision to speak up   King Jehoshaphat was intimidated and understandably so. The armies of Moab, Ammon and Mount Seir had combined to declare war on him and were marching towards him. Jehoshaphat knew he had to look to the Lord for help, he had come to the end of himself and had no other choice. The Lord spoke to Jahaziel, son of Zechariah and he brought a prophetic word of direction, guidance and encouragement. They only needed to stand strong and the Lord would bring a great victory. It came to pass that the armies of Moab, Ammon and Seir turned on each other and managed to wipe each army out completely.  

We need the prophetic word of God when we are facing our own great battles. We need to hear from God and speak out His word in critical times of our lives, when we are under attack. Then we will find that our discouragement turns to encouragement, negativity to positivity, intimidation to confidence. Speak the truths of the Word of God into dismal situations and see them turned around.   How we need to hear the prophetic word to enable the Lord to give us victory over our enemy.

The good news is that the victory has already been won! By Jesus paying the price for our sin and disarming the principalities and powers He made a public spectacle of them. Jesus humiliated the devil in defeating him and forced him to stand in front of his own army and that of the heavenly realms whilst his powers were stripped.  

Win your victory by fasting, by prayer, by worship and by the Word just as King Jehoshaphat did. Learn to rely on God’s word more and more. Respect the Holy Spirit by listening to Him. And the Lord will give you an amazing victory. Maybe today can be your significant turning point.  

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