He Took Care of Them!

“So the LORD saved Hezekiah and the people of Jerusalem from the hand of Sennacherib king of Assyria and from the hand of all others. He took care of them on every side.” (2 Chronicles 32:22 NIV)

No matter who insults The Lord of Heaven, no matter how powerful a group of people think they are, they matter how barbaric they are, Our God saves to the utmost all those who openly acknowledge Him and whose confidence is in Him, alone.

Like all of the histories revealed in the Bible, this one–about the King of Assyria (Sennacherib) and how he taunted the people of Jerusalem about how their God would not save them, reminds us that since God took of those who looked to Him for deliverance from an evil king, He will take care of those who are stilling looking to Him for deliverance from evil.

When we know that God will take care of us, we can say with confidence God’s Will in the earth will reign no matter how evil the world looks. And just like He sent an angel to destroy all of those who fought against His chosen people, He will do it again and again. If we don’t believe this, all we have to do is watch and see the hand of The Lord in all things. He is the same God, with the same love, and the same purpose for His people–all who love and obey Him.

We are reminded in this segment of Scripture that all those who oppose themselves against the Living God, have an appointed end and they will withdraw from their attack on God’s people in disgrace. All we–God’s people have to do–is pray and remain confident of the end of the matter–God will take care of us and destroy those who oppose Him.

Our role in the 21st Century is to remain faithful to the God of Heaven, the God who created all things and without whom, nothing was ever created. We stand firm in the face of opposition to all those who attempt to demean and undermine our faith. We stand firm in the face of those trials and persecutions of our faith from those who choose to live in opposition to God’s Word. We stand firm–against the evil that is encroaching the land and we pray, believing that our God will take care of us and nothing the enemy has planned will come to fruition and they will slink away, when the whole world sees their demise. No weapon formed against us shall ever prosper when we are obedient to our God! He took care of those in Jerusalem then and He will take care of all of us who believe Him, now.

No Weapon Will Work!

no weapon forged against you will prevail, and you will refute every tongue that accuses you. This is the heritage of the servants of the LORD, and this is their vindication from me,” declares the LORD.” (Isaiah 54:17 NIV)

When God declares a thing, it is what it is. He tells us through Isaiah, He is the one who creates all–the material for the weapons and the destroyer who wreaks havoc upon others, but no weapon made will work against those who love and obey Him! Hallelujah!

The enemy tries to use all sorts of weapons (literally and figuratively) against those who love God, but he has not managed to create a weapon that will work against us.

Poverty is a weapon influenced by the distractions that keep us hearing God and the using His Wisdom to amass wealth.

Sickness is a weapon when our bodies are attacked and we don’t receive the healing already made possible through the blood of Jesus Christ.

Persecution is a weapon instigated by the bold stances we take against the enemy who seeks to scorn and devour us..

Self-hatred, depression, oppression are all weapons ignited by a lack of knowledge of who we are in Christ.

When we get into The Word and allow The Word to dwell richly within us, we can overcome any attack and quench the fiery darts of the enemy, every time he launches an attack against us. We are overcomers, victorious in all things, and since the battle is not ours, but The Lord’s, in the end, WE WIN!

We are never told that we would not be attacked. In fact, just the opposite is true. Jesus tells us, “In the world, we will have trials and tribulations, but He has overcome The World. What He’s saying to us is that the god of this world–Satan–will influence, instigate, and ignite situations in our lives that may make us want to cave, but we don’t have to cave, because the victory is ours in Jesus’ Name! All we have to do is live according to The Word and see the results of our obedience to God’s Word.

When there is sickness among any, we call upon those who know the power of prayer and the power of the healing virtue that flows from Jesus just as powerful today as it was in years past and we are healed.

When we experience lack of anything, we seek God’s wisdom and He gives it liberally, and we know how to operate in the gifts He has given us and have more than enough–for ourselves and others.

When we stay in the Word, understanding who we are in Christ–knowing that we are children of the Most High and He will withhold no good thing from us because He is a loving Father and wants only the best for us and we can and should operate with the Mind of Christ, not our own and never be enticed into depression and self-loathing.

This is the will of God for us–No weapon–contrived by the enemy–will work against us!

Teach The Children!

“All your children will be taught by the LORD, and great will be their peace.” (Isaiah 54:13 NIV)

Have we dropped the ball? Are we know longer demonstrating what The Lord has taught in our own behavior? Are we the reason the children are the way they are?

We have all been “children” at sometime or another and unfortunately, some fully physically grown adults are still children. They were not taught the basics of socialization--common courtesy, sharing, consideration, respect, self-control, and self-respect. If we didn’t learn these as children, chances are we never will.

I remember when I first started working at one of the high schools and I was trying to squeeze past a young lady blocking my path. I said, “Excuse me.” Her response was, “Excuse you?” and then she sat there staring at me like I’d grown horns. She had no idea what I meant.

Too many of the children in schools, at home and in the general public take their “anger and frustration” with them, everywhere they go.Why are they angry? Their home life is less than desirable. We have kids going hungry, being abused, sleeping on mattresses without linen, sleeping in their clothes because they’ve never had pajamas, and then they have mamas who have different live-in boyfriends every other week, there’s never enough food or money, some in the dark without heat or light and then mama’s boyfriends are abusing the children and daring them to tell it.

It is not their fault that their parents never learned to parent, but someone has to teach them right from wrong and how to get along with others in this society because we do not live alone in isolation.

This happens because the parents were not taught when they were children and so they cannot teach their children anything worthwhile, but those of us who know, can and should teach them whenever we find a need to do so, wherever we are; it is our responsibility to teach the children in the ways of the Lord, by example not just by what we say!

So, let’s make a pledge–a commitment–to correct lovingly (if we can) and show those children who were never taught the things that they ought to know and do, so our communities and school and homes, too will know peace and harmony will reside in the midst of it all–Let’s Teach The Children!

My name is Mary M. Hall-Rayford. As an educator, parent, grandparent and child of the Most High, I approve this message!

Never Failing Water!

“The LORD will guide you always; he will satisfy your needs in a sun-scorched land and will strengthen your frame. You will be like a well-watered garden, like a spring whose waters never fail.” (Isaiah 58:11 NIV)

The essence of life for human beings is found in having access to water–clean, refreshing water–to nourish our bodies and the land. Without water, very simply–we dry up and die. Trying to live without God’s guidance is like living without water–eventually, people dry up from bitterness and frustration and die spiritually, which is the first step in the physical death. Where the spirit of the Lord is absent–there can be no life–because there is nothing to nourish the soul.

However, when we do things the way He tells us to do them--fasting, living, sharing, teaching, and loving–He will always guide us, satisfy our needs, strengthen us and we–like a well-watered garden–will blossom and grow, providing all the nourishment needed and then like a spring, we’ll be able to provide for others and the provisions will never end.

But if we’re going to be like a spring whose water never fails–because of its source of water–usually unseen, we must be careful in the distribution of our resources so they will be a constant supply. Water is both life-giving and life-taking. Too much at any given time when the ground won’t absorb results in floods and often the loss of life. Even in our giving and sharing with others, sometimes we can do too much for others without allowing them the opportunity to learn to do for self and we create a society of people who are constant drains on resources and when they are used up, they are gone and the people die. When “all” are contributing to the wellspring of provisions, the provisions will last and be a constant source to satisfy needs.

We must remember, when we do for others as God leads us to do, we become a resource, the conduit by which we are able to help others--not the source because God is the source –our supplier, and since He is the source–the never-ending, constant in our lives, we can always tap into the source–seeking wisdom–in becoming a resource for others.

Lord Jesus, help us to understand how You want us to be a spring whose waters never fail in demonstrating to others Your love. Provide us with wisdom from on high so we will do all things to Your glory in teaching others to follow You and seek You in times of need. Thank You for allowing us be resources to Your glory so we can convince others of the need to see You as the source of all we will ever need.

On That Highway!

“And a highway will be there; it will be called the Way of Holiness; it will be for those who walk on that Way. The unclean will not journey on it; wicked fools will not go about on it.” (Isaiah 35:8 NIV)

When we picture or think about the word, “highway” we have a different perception of highway than Isaiah did when he was speaking to the Children of Israel–encouraging them to live for The Lord in obedience to Him.

Artists have written songs about the highway to heaven and what is going to be found there–probably based upon this scripture–if the entire chapter is read.

“No more crying, no more hunger, no more blind, no more deaf, no more lame, there will be peace–since no more wars will be possible.”

Highways–as we see them now–are links or connections to faraway places or at least a short-cut to get across the city (our freeways). What we see on those highways are speeding vehicles on infinite slabs of concrete with bridges overhead and cities underneath them and occasionally emergency vehicles summoned to handle an accident which leaves debris and becomes hazardous for other drivers. Sometimes–our highways are the paths to destruction and they are certainly a cesspool of inconsiderate drivers who think they own the freeway.

However, going back to those times of old, Isaiah painted a vivid picture of a highway--not connecting us to another place here on earth, but the path to heaven and all we could expect there. In addition to telling us what would not be there and what would, he tells us that the wicked fools won’t be there, nor will those who are not saved–the unclean.

How do we know for sure? The only way we get into heaven is through the blood of Jesus Christ. “What can wash away my sins, nothing but the blood of Jesus!” We are cleansed through the blood of Jesus Christ, shed on the cross at Calvary! He died so we might live a sin-free life and left us here so we could encourage others to seek Him, accept Him, and be cleansed and made whole! What love He has for us!

Now, we have a decision to make and we must make it quickly. Time is winding down for the enemy to maintain a hold on people for he will surely be banished to the lake of fire and he is determined to take as many people as he can with him. We–who know how he operates, must be as diligent as he is to encourage others to connect with Jesus Christ so they will be spared and can walk on that highway, reserved for those who have been cleansed.

Father, in the name of Jesus, we come to You and thank You for loving us enough to prepare a place for us for all eternity. We thank You for giving us the boldness, courage and determination needed to encourage others to want to walk The Way of Holiness rather than the way of sin. We thank You for allowing us chance after chance to get living right with You and we give You all the praise and glory for it for You are the only One worthy of our praise! Amen!

Never Silent!

“I have posted watchmen on your walls, Jerusalem; they will never be silent day or night. You who call on the LORD, give yourselves no rest,” (Isaiah 62:6 NIV)

During those ancient years when a city was built with high walls surrounding it and a tower, watchmen were assigned to keep guard over the city and when they saw danger coming (an attack by the enemy), they were to warn the residents of the city so they would prepare for battle to defend it. When they saw the enemy coming, they were to sound an alarm–usually a loud blast from a trumpet or other horn. This assignment was important since lives could be lost and entire cities captured.

Today, there are still watchmen assigned to sound the alarm when they see coming danger of an attack by the enemy. Since there are no more “cities with high walls” per se (but the walls of hearts), the alarm must be sounded through whatever venue is available in order to save lives and to keep people from being captured and held in bondage by the enemy. The problem is–not many are listening to the watchmen who have indeed sounded the alarm–warning people of the dangers of being captured by the enemy of man–Satan–and being held bondage to sin. We, who are watchmen, observing the times and aligning them with The Word, will not be held accountable for people not listening when we speak God’s Truth. If they choose to ignore us, their blood will be on their hands.

“But if the watchman sees the sword coming and does not blow the trumpet to warn the people and the sword comes and takes someone’s life, that person’s life will be taken because of their sin, but I will hold the watchman accountable for their blood. When I say to the wicked, ‘You wicked person, you will surely die,’ and you do not speak out to dissuade them from their ways, that wicked person will die for their sin, and I will hold you accountable for their blood. But if you do warn the wicked person to turn from their ways and they do not do so, they will die for their sin, though you yourself will be saved.”(Ezekiel 33:6,8,9 NIV–Best understood if entire chapters are read)

This is “The Word of The Lord” and woe unto to us if we do not hear and obey!

So though there may be those who would prefer seeing a “feel-good, sugar-coated” message, I am appointed to warn and I will never stay silent about what God says or how He wants us to live. I love encouraging people to seek Him, love Him, obey Him, and receive all the benefits He has for us, but when I see the destruction the enemy has planned, I must also warn people not to be deceived by those trying to changing the intent of God’s Word. All Believers must study The Word for themselves and understand God’s intent for inspiring men to write what He wanted us to know. There are many who are hearing God, and warning people about the impending dangers of being influenced by Satan. However, not many are heeding the warning because their flesh speaks louder.

Watchmen, Watchmen–Sound The Alarm and Let it be known–Danger approaches and lives will be lost–if the warning is not heeded–change is coming and no man will able to stem the tide of devastation we will experience, if we don’t turn from our wicked ways and seek The Lord to forgive us and live as He desires!

His Return Policy!

“I have swept away your offenses like a cloud, your sins like the morning mist. Return to me, for I have redeemed you.” (Isaiah 44:22 NIV)

Many cities have return policies on cans, plastic, and glass beverage containers. We pay a deposit on the container and when we’re finished with it, we can return to a store to “redeem” the same amount paid for the deposit. For those who forget about the deposit paid on a container and discard them, there are those who diligently seek them in garbage cans everywhere and when they find “their treasure” they return the container for a deposit they did not pay.

God so loved the world that He came down to earth in the person of Jesus Christ, lived among us, preached what His Father said, knew He came to die for us, hung on a cross for our sins, and provided a means for us to return to a right relationship with The Father with His Resurrection.

He paid the price through His death–the deposit we could not pay and now we can capitalize on the Return by simply turning away from and stop doing those things that keep us from being in a right relationship with God.

Isaiah prophesied God sweeping away our offenses like the ever-moving clouds, (with the work on the cross) and now He’s waiting for us to return to Him, since He has already redeemed us.

He’s waiting for us to realize the treasures He has stored up for us because of His love. How long will He have to wait? For some, the deposit will never be redeemed because the desires of the flesh reign and those who love to fulfill the desires of their flesh, never hear Him speak.

The price has been paid–the deposit on our lives to enter into the gates of heaven–even though we could not pay it, He has paid it for us and all we have to do is return to God–willing to live out His purposes for our lives.

Are we ready? Or will we wait too long and He Returns for those who love Him and some will get left behind, wondering what happened?

Time is running short and the enemy knows it! This is why greed and corruption rule the land, chaos and confusion keep people unbalanced and they think they are wiser than God, not realizing they have been duped by the devil who doesn’t want to burn alone in the lake of fire.

Today, we have another chance to return to Him and receive the benefit for which we never paid. Let’s do it and wipe the smirk off the devil’s face!

Defeated Enemy!

“For the mountains may move and the hills disappear, but even then my faithful love for you will remain. My covenant of blessing will never be broken,” says the LORD, who has mercy on you. If any nation comes to fight you, it is not because I sent them. Whoever attacks you will go down in defeat.” (Isaiah 54:10,15 NLT)

The promises of God are “Yes” and “Amen” and we can see them throughout The Word!

When storms arise and violence erupts and there is nothing we can do about the chaos swirling around us, we can go to The Word and know the outcome–His love and protection will remain even if the mountains and hills disappear. He will never stop blessing those who live according to His Word and whose desire is to please Him in all things.

Perhaps, just perhaps, the reason many people only look for the blessings–and disappointed when they don’t get them–is because they never understood their part of the covenant–Love God and Obey Him!

And since we can be assured of His continued blessings, we can rest on the knowledge that if the enemy (any nation) “comes” to fight us, they will go down in defeat. Now, that’s something to shout about right there! But now, notice--if we go seek a fight, we are not covered under the blessing–we are only covered if the enemy comes to fight us–not if we go to fight them.

When the enemy comes (in whatever shape or form), stand firm on the knowledge of God’s Word and know they are already defeated–all we need to do is obey God and do whatever He says to do.

When others come to tempt us to do evil–rebuke them in the name of Jesus and start sharing The Glorious Gospel!

When emotions rise and we are tempted to be depressed or influenced by them to harm self or others–stand firm in the faith that God has plans for us and that nothing in His plans are designed to harm us.

When it seems like nothing we do ever turns out right–we must remember that in Christ–we can do all things and do them well. We have the mind of Christ and we will not allow the enemy to steal our joy or kill our faith! We will stand up and face him with The Sword, always prepared to keep him in his place.

Our Tasks!

“I, the LORD, have called you to demonstrate my righteousness. I will take you by the hand and guard you, and I will give you to my people, Israel, as a symbol of my covenant with them. And you will be a light to guide the nations. You will open the eyes of the blind. You will free the captives from prison, releasing those who sit in dark dungeons.” (Isaiah 42:6,7 NLT)

Anyone who proclaims the name of Jesus as their Lord and Savior has a job to do. We are called–to be true representatives of Him–who called us–to demonstrate His righteousness (not our own). We are to be a light, guiding nations. We are responsible for making sure the eyes of the blind (spiritually) are opened and those who are held captive by the darkness of their minds are set free. And we do all of this-in the name of the Lord, giving Him the glory for all things accomplished.

Every time the enemy raises his ugly head with lies and half-truths (which are actually whole lies), we must be in position to declare God’s Truth. In order to do this, we must stay in The Word and be ready with an answer for anyone who questions our faith–based on The Word.

The enemy’s strategy is to create scales on the eyes of those who say they believe, but are actually weak in their faith walk. We know these people when we see them because they waver–wobbling between God’s Truth and man’s political correctness in making decisions. They have been blinded to the Truth and then they promote–what they cannot fully see–the Truth of God’s Word over the “constantly changing” landscape of political correctness. It is our job–our task–to keep telling God’s Truth until the scales drop and they can see clearly how the enemy has manipulated them.

One of the reasons people find themselves in the darkness of depressed minds is because the enemy has planted seeds of doubt in their minds–causing them to doubt their own self-worth and doubt whether they are loved or not. The enemy plants seeds of negativity in the minds of all who waver–not understanding that their lack of total faith in God–has opened the door for Satan to enter.

The Word says, through John, “You shall know the Truth and the Truth shall set you free.” We must keep telling, and keep telling, and keep telling until we can tell no more–the Truth of God’s Word so we can see captive minds set free–and the seeds of doubt are replaced by seeds of Love–His Love and ours–leading them to a path of His plan.

We have tasks to complete before He returns. The world is turning dark as it succumbs to the enemy’s manipulations and we are the only ones who can be a beacon of light in the midst of all the darkness. Are you up for the task? Then let’s get busy–promoting God’s Truth like never before–to His glory by allowing Holy Spirit free reign in our lives!

What’s His Name?

“But I will reveal my name to my people, and they will come to know its power. Then at last they will recognize that I am the one who speaks to them.”(Isaiah 52:6 NLT)

“There is power, power wonder-working in the name, in the name,

There is power, power, wonder-working in the precious name of The Lord!”

What’s His name?  JESUS!

What’s His name? JESUS!

What’s His name? JESUS!

No other name I  know!

“There is healing in the name of Jesus!”

“There is deliverance in the name of Jesus!”

“There is salvation in the name of Jesus!”

“There is power in the name of Jesus!”

“He’ll break every chain that shackles people into darkness and bring them into the marvelous light!”

“Every knee shall bow and every tongue confess the name of Jesus!”

“There’s something about the name of Jesus, something about the name Jesus; it is the sweetest name I know!”

“Oh how I love the name Jesus, Oh how I love the name Jesus; it is the sweetest name, I know!”

These are lines from songs that have been written about Jesus and the power of His name.

There is no other name by which man can be saved–Jesus is His name!

The list could go on and on, but the reality is–there is no other name in the whole wide world that can accomplish what the name of Jesus can.

He said, “Whatever you ask the Father in my name, that I will do.” (John 15:16; 16:23) This is why the most effective prayer is not the model prayer that many call the Lord’s Prayer because He did not pray in His name. He gave us a model–a blueprint, but it is the sincere prayer of the heart of man (woman and child), to the Father, asked in His name, that gets results.

Through the prophet Isaiah, the Word was proclaimed–His name has been revealed and those who know Him, know the power of using His name.

For Believers-all over the land--praying in the name of Jesus, collectively and sincerely, will accomplish all that we ask, according to His will and we shall see a difference in the nations in which we live. Unite in prayer–seeking and thanking Him for peace, stability in every country, love in every heart, and healing for all who will receive it in His name.