Last week Tim and I were in California to take part in the Living Proof Crusade with Mario Murillo. Read about Mario’s visions, words, and descriptions of what happened there on his blog: https://mariomurilloministries.wordpress.com/2019/03/15/breaking-news-3/
In one of Mario’s messages he said that in the early days of Christianity, signs and wonders always accompanied the preaching of the gospel. A miracle stops the argument. The power of God is the Living Proof. Souls are still hungry; revival is happening.
Tim and I were deeply blessed to be part of it. People were being healed, set free and saved! Praise God. The meetings were held in a tent in the parking lot of a multi-church facility in Marysville, CA. Six meetings had been planned. By the end of the week, though, so many were coming, overflowing the tent, that it was decided to continue the meetings this week, in a bigger tent they will put up in a baseball field in Marysville.
Pray for workers for the harvest. Pray for us, too, “that praying at all times in the Spirit, with all prayer and supplication. To that end, keep alert with all perseverance, making supplication for all the saints, and also for me, that words may be given to me in opening my mouth boldly to proclaim the mystery of the gospel” Ephesians 6:18-19
We believe that the Lord has equipped us for this revival and has called us to take part as volunteers. We came home on Saturday with plans to purchase a better truck for pulling our trailer. We may look for a bigger trailer, too. We have made reservations for the Living Proof Conference in Reno in July, and we are getting ready to hit the road again, when the dates for the next tent meetings are announced. The next one is planned for Stockton.
Now here is the fun part:
Many years ago I sorted the letters that my family had saved while my grandparents were missionaries in China. Twenty-five years of letters have been saved. While I sorted through them, I found this:
Warren Collins was my great grandfather. He lived in Texas. He was a street evangelist. I remember stories my grandmother told me about him. (The notes on the side of the article were made by my mom when she transcribed all the letters into books for the family.)
I was so excited when I found this article—about his campaign in Bellingham! And I learned that my great grandfather had been baptized in the Holy Spirit, at least by the 1920’s! I shouted out to my family, “Look at this! There are five generations of tongue talkers in this family!”
The really exciting thing, though, is that my grandfather’s legacy has passed down through all these generations. Now, even his great, great, great grandchildren love the Lord, serve him with all their hearts, and yes, pray in tongues!
Whenever I hear someone tell their story about how they came to faith in Jesus, I love to ask, “Who was praying for you?
They almost always know
It occurred to me to ask this question when one day I noticed at the end of the letter Paul wrote to the Romans, as he was sending greetings to everyone, he wrote, “Greet Andronicus and Junia, my kin and fellow prisoners who are well known among the emissaries. They were in Messiah before me. Romans 16:7. Wow! I realized that some people in Paul’s family prayed for him while he was still persecuting the Christians! This is the power of prayer.
Over the years I have heard some great stories in answer to my question, “Who was praying for you?” I would like to tell you a couple of my favorites.
- A man I met while I selling MSM cream at the Puyallup Fair let me know that he had become a believer as an adult. “Who was praying for you?” I asked. He laughed and said, “Back in those days I worked for FedEx. I had a delivery to make to the Tacoma Dome. I found the room where I was to take the package. When I burst through the door, I found the room full of people with their heads down, praying. I apologized for interrupting them. They said, ‘No problem, come and join us. We are getting ready for the Billy Graham crusade.’ I stood back, pointed at the clock, said, ‘That’s the only god I serve’, and left.” Now we laughed together. “Guess who was praying for me?” he said. “Years later, after I had been a Christian for quite a while, the Lord reminded me of that scene.”
- Another man told this story. When he was a teenager, he couldn’t shake the drug and alcohol. He would vow that he would never do it again, then his friends would pick him up for a party. The next thing he knew he would be high, and drunk, again. Finding himself in this condition in the back seat of a moving car one day, he hung his head in despair. “I just don’t know what the answer is,” he said to himself. Just then, he looked up and saw a sign that said, “Jesus is the Answer.” Okay, he thought, if Jesus is the answer, then I want Jesus. He was immediately sober, and saved! He knew it was a miraculous act of God. “Who was praying for you?” I asked. “My young life leader,” he said. “I went to find him at his college dorm. When he answered the door I handed him the Bible that he had given me and said, “I don’t need this anymore. I’m a Christian now. You can give it to someone else.” We all know what happened next. The Young Life leader invited this young man into his room and began to disciple him.
I love it!
- Then this story: I heard a Muslim background believer tell her story. She had met Jesus in her bedroom when she was only four years old. She endured tremendous persecution from her family and community. Eventually she had to run for her life. She could not be persuaded to give up her faith in Jesus. “Who was praying for you?” I asked. She took time to look around in the room. Then she pointed her finger at each of us. “Someone I DON”T even know,” she said.
Recently I was reprimanded by the Lord because I stopped praying for someone in my family. I had a vivid dream about it. I shared the dream with my daughter and told her the story about how I had stopped praying for this person. My daughter said, “Mom, how would you like to get to heaven and have the Lord ask you why you stopped praying for her?”
My daughter told me that I need to get intentional about praying for her. She suggested that I use the number of the month she was born, and the date, as a time to set the alarm on my phone as a reminder to pray. I have done that. I wrote a prayer on the notepad on my phone. Every afternoon when my alarm goes off, I read this prayer out loud.
I pray that the eyes of her heart will be enlightened that the light of the glory of the gospel will shine in her heart, and she will know the hope of your calling, Lord. I pray that she will know the truth and the truth will set her free. You are the way, the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except by you. Draw her to you, Lord; You who are able to do exceedingly and abundantly beyond all we can ask or think, to you will be the glory, before all time, now and forever. Amen.
Jesus told us to pray.
Paul told us to pray:
In all circumstances take up the shield of faith, with which you can extinguish all the flaming darts of the evil one; and take the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God, praying at all times in the Spirit, with all prayer and supplication. To that end, keep alert with all perseverance, making supplication for all the saints, and also for me, that words may be given to me in opening my mouth boldly to proclaim the mystery of the gospel, for which I am an ambassador in chains, that I may declare it boldly, as I ought to speak. Ephesians 6:16-20
A man came into our store one day and said, “How can you be so bold to put up the name of Jesus on your sign?”
“We run this business for Jesus. What do I have to lose by holding up his name?” I asked.
“Maybe some people won’t buy your stuff,” he said.
“Jesus runs this business. He will direct sales to us,” I answered. “My responsibility is to point people to him.”
The man mused for a moment. He then told me that he was a Christian; he even led Bible studies and home groups. We had a good discussion about the Lord. As he got ready to leave, he asked, “You are investing in gold, aren’t you?”
“What for?” I said, “You can’t eat gold.”
“Yes, but when the monetary system collapses, you are going to need gold.”
“You can’t eat gold,” I said again.
“You won’t be able to buy anything if you don’t have gold,” he said.
“You can’t eat gold. It won’t be worth anything. We are making food. Food will have value, give us something to trade, if it comes to that.”
His forehead crinkled as he looked intently at me.
“Well, you do have a CWP don’t you?”
“A permit to carry a concealed weapon?”
“You have got to be kidding me? Who would I shoot?”
“Things are going to get very bad. You are going to have to defend your property,” he said.
“I don’t agree,” I said. Then I gave him my perspective on guns, self-defense, and defense of my possessions.
“Let me tell you about one of my heroes” I said. “I met Dorothy Bennet, who was in her 80’s, in the donut shop in Lynden. She heard me and my mom talking about the Lord. She asked if she and her husband could join us. After introductions she told us that she had been doing radio broadcasts into Muslim countries, daily, for many, many years. She told us lots of stories. One of them was about a prayer meeting she and her husband, Richard, were holding in Africa. Genocide was going on in this part of Africa. People in that meeting had been attacked by neighboring, warring, tribes. Suddenly a man burst into the meeting. He was drunk. He had a machine gun. He threatened them all. He put the gun in Dorothy’s face and told her he was going to kill her. “Go ahead,” she said. “I’m going to heaven. Where are you going?” The man fell face down, on the floor, Richard kicked his gun away. When the man got up, he was sober and saved. Richard said the people who had been praying started singing a hymn of thanksgiving to God. He said it was the most beautiful worship he had ever been part of.
“I hope,” I told the man in my driveway, “that I will have that kind of courage if I am ever faced with that kind of threat.”
I went on to tell him that I had thought a lot about this. The worst-case scenario would be, in my opinion—someone is torturing a child. I have been given the power to stop it by denouncing Jesus. I hope that I would respond by commanding the perpetrator to stop, in the name of Jesus! If he didn’t, I would assume that this was the will of God. Then I would speak to the child, “This is temporary. Have faith. We will be out of here soon.”
I told him that I read Voice of the Martyrs magazine every month. Christians are having this kind of experience, right now, in many parts of the world. I hope I never have to go through such a thing, but if I do, I hope that I can be as steadfast as they are.
The man said not another word. He got in his car and drove away. As I watched him leave, I thought. “Isn’t that interesting. Here is a guy that says he’s a Christian, but he questioned my “boldness” to hold up Jesus’ name. Then he showed me that what he doesn’t trust the Lord. What he is really counting on, trusting in, are his gold and his guns.
This ad came in the mail a few days ago. Tim was about to throw it away, but I told him I would keep it. It helps to illustrate my point.
I am not a gun control advocate. But I wonder why so many Christians are running to gold and guns instead of trusting in the Lord. He told us not to love the world, nor the things of the world. He told us to seek the kingdom of God. He told us not to fear him who can kill the body but fear him who can send the soul to hell. He told us not to worry about what we are going to eat, or what we are going to wear. He told us not to worry at all!
Some men trust in horses, some men trust in chariots, but we will trust in the NAME of the Lord.
A lady came into the store one day and said, “Your sign offends me.”
I was not about to apologize for the sign. Since we started doing business here on the Birch Bay Lynden Road, we have held up the name of Jesus on the sign at the end of our driveway. I have changed the words on the sign as directed by the Holy Spirit. Sometimes it changes every week, once I left the same words there for a whole year. We have had very few complaints about it. But this lady complained.
“Oh,” I answered.
“I’m a Jew,” she said, “your sign offends me.”
Again, I answered, “Oh.”
When I did not respond to her complaint, she shrugged her shoulders, then said, “Anyway, I am here because a friend of mine has a sick baby. We have heard that goat milk might help her.”
“It might,” I answered. “We know of several babies that have been helped by drinking goat milk.”
“Well this baby is so sick her mom can’t put her in a car seat and take her anywhere. She vomits up everything her mom tries to feed her. That’s why I said I would come and get some goat milk for her. Let’s just keep our fingers crossed that this works.”
I started getting the goat milk out of the refrigerator. The lady again said, “Let’s just keep our fingers crossed that this works.”
Talking to the Lord in my head, I said, “If she says that once more, I am going to say something.”
Sure enough, as I rang up the sale, she said it again. “Let’s keep our fingers crossed.”
“We are not going to keep our fingers crossed,” I said. “We are going to pray.”
“Oh, I have been praying,” she said.
“No. I mean right now. You and I are going to pray for this baby.”
“Oh, I don’t know how to do that!” she said.
“That’s okay,” I said, “I do.”
I put my hand on her shoulder and prayed. When I got ready to close the prayer, I knew that the name of Jesus would offend her, so I turned my face toward hers and said, “In the name of the Lord, Amen.”
She shrugged her shoulders again and said, “Okay, I can handle that.”
A few days later the mother and child we had prayed for came into the store. The child still looked weak, the mom looked exhausted, but she was full of praise! From the first sip of the goat milk the baby had stopped vomiting. Praise God!
Later that day I told my seven-year-old granddaughter, Ryleigh, the story. At the end of the story I said, “I don’t know if it was the goat milk or the prayer that healed the baby.”
Ryleigh, stood up straight, put her hands on her hips, then pointed right up at me, “Grandma!” she scolded, “it was NOT the prayer OR the goat milk! It was Jesus!”
Early in my walk with the Lord I realized that we, and everything else, was created by God. The question of the old earth/new earth puzzled me, though. I knew that God created us fully made, all at once, but what about all this “evidence” of the universe being billions of years old.
I found the answer in the story of Jesus feeding the 5000. He created fish and bread, ex nihilo—out of nothing. And what’s more he created these things with the appearance of age! The fish looked as if it had spent time growing up, being caught, and prepared as food. The bread had the same characteristics—Jesus created the grain and other ingredients in the bread, in and instant. The bread looked as if it were the result of the whole process of growing wheat, harvesting, grinding, adding yeast, perhaps other things, and water. And it looked, felt and tasted as if it had been baked! If Jesus, who is God, can do that—he can create a whole universe, or millions and millions of universes, ex nihilo—with the appearance of age.
But if a person doesn’t understand, yet, that Jesus is God, how can that person be persuaded that God created everything?
I spent months studying the arguments on both sides of the evolution/creation debate. At last it came down to one question for me to ask a person who believes we got here by a long process of evolution, “How could sexual reproduction evolve?”
Impossible, I knew. I knew that sexual reproduction could not have evolved. How could male and female evolve for millions of years, somehow reproducing when the evolution of their body parts was not complete.
I was satisfied. I had my question to ask. I waited eagerly for an evolutionist to reveal himself to me. At last, one day there was a car parked in front of our farm store with a Christian fish on one side of the rear bumper, and a Darwin fish with legs on the other side of the bumper.
A couple was in the store.
“Which one of you is the Christian and which one is the evolutionist?” I asked.
“Okay,” I said. “I have a question for you. How could sexual reproduction evolve?”
Without a second’s hesitation they both said, “We don’t know. It just did.”
Wow. I was disappointed, to say the least. I had expected more intellectual honesty.
If you haven’t thought the issue through yet, think on these things:
- How could the eye evolve?
- Learn what irreducible complexity means
- There is no such thing as a “simple cell”—a single cell magnified to the size of the city of Los Angeles, would look just as complex as that city.
If you are a Christian and you don’t believe in a young earth and a six-day creation you don’t believe that death is a punishment for sin. (Because you believe that death existed before the Fall). If that is so, why did Jesus have to die to save us?
My daughter, Jasona, lives in Colorado with her husband, three children and two dogs. A few days ago, their Australian Shepherd, Maggie, unexpectedly, died. She was ten years old but had been in good health. Jasona came home in the afternoon and found her in distress. As her breathing grew labored, Jasona laid her hands on her, blessed her, thanked her for being such a good friend to all of them. Jasona told her if it was time for her to go, she could go. Maggie took her last breath, then left her body behind.
The grief of losing a family dog some of us know only too well. All our precious animals will die. Anyone who has lost a pet should read Randy Alcorn’s answer to the question “Do dogs go to heaven?” You can find it in his book “Heaven”.
Maggie joined Jasona’s family when she as a puppy. When my ex-husband, Bob, arrived at my daughter’s house shortly after they got Maggie, all three of the children ran out into the driveway to greet him. One of them fell and got hurt. There was a lot of screaming and crying as the children came back into the house with their grandfather. Maggie assumed that whatever had happened was Bob’s fault. She hated him for it! She growled and barked at him. She didn’t trust anything he did. She never got over that. Every time Bob came to visit through the years, she had the same reaction to him.
Maggie was a friendly dog. She loved everyone who came to visit, except Bob, and me.
A few months after the incident in the driveway, I came to visit. I had not met Maggie yet. Maggie had the same reaction to me that she had to Bob! She barked and barked at me when I arrived. When she finally stopped barking, she stood back and growled at me.
“Wow,” said my six-year-old granddaughter, “Maggie doesn’t even like someone who used to be married to Papa!”
Maggie watched my every move, every time, I came to visit. She did not trust me. Even the last time I saw Maggie a few months ago, and after 10 years, she still didn’t trust me. She would jump up and put her front feet on my chest when I sneezed! Somehow, she knew that I was connected to Bob. Even though Bob and I had never been there together. I didn’t know how, but she could sense there had been a “one flesh” relationship. Then I learned something that explained it.
I read an article about scientists who were studying brain tissue from deceased women. I don’t know what they were looking for, but they discovered DNA in the women’s brains that did not belong to the women. They subsequently learned that when a woman has sexual intercourse with a man, his DNA can be found in her brain tissue forever. After reading the first article, I did more searching to verify this study. I found numerous articles on the internet confirming the study’s findings.
Of course, I thought about Maggie. Can dogs can sense a person’s DNA? We know that dogs can sense things we can’t. Service dogs can be trained to sense a seizure before it happens. They can “smell” cancer. They “know” when someone is ill or in trouble. I once saw a demonstration of search and rescue dogs. How does the dog know which way the person he is looking for went? I have wondered this watching our own dogs perfectly following the “scent” of one our children—going from room to room in the same pattern that the child did. How did he know? The search and rescue dog trainer said that they had taken a dog to a large sports stadium after all the fans had left. They gave the dog the “scent” of the person they will looking for. The dog went directly to the seat where the man had been! How could the dog sort that out with 10’s of thousands of other “scents”?
Maggie knew of my connection to Bob. I don’t know if she could smell his DNA, but she knew something of him was in me.
God meant it literally when he said, “The two shall be one flesh.”
Every woman should know this: if you have sex with someone, that man’s DNA will be with you the rest of your life.
Genesis 2:24 Therefore a man shall leave his father and his mother and hold fast to his wife, and they shall become one flesh.