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Showing posts with label Healing. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Healing. Show all posts

Monday, January 29, 2024

Immanuel Prayer – Cleansing a Memory and Healing the Heart - Purity 1260

Immanuel Prayer – Cleansing a Memory and Healing the Heart - Purity 1260

Purity 1260 01/29/2024 Purity 1260 podcast

Purity 1260 on YouTube:



Good morning,

Today’s photo of large stones on the shore and in the waters of what I believe to be the Tomhannock Reservoir in Pittstown NY comes to us from yours truly as I reached back in my iPhone’s photo archives this morning to share this Monday, May Day scene from 2015. This photo was taken by my in the 18th of May in 2015 and even though I didn’t intentionally mean to reach back that far I am using it because I find it oddly appropriate as yesterday afternoon’s Immanuel Prayer session with a friend took me years back to remind me that the Lord has always been with me and to clean out my closet and cleanse my heart of some residual grief, sin, and pain.   

Well, it’s Monday and as I have already gotten to work this morning by clearing my drive way of an inch or two of heavy wet snow and prepare myself for a full work day a head, I am giving thanks this morning for the path that the Lord has placed me on and for the work He has been doing in continuing to increase my freedom and peace by removing shadows from my past that I didn’t even know needed to be dealt with.   

It should be no surprise that the Lord will surprise you but even I have to admit that I didn’t realize the depths to which God’s love can go to to unburden our hearts and to lead us into healing and freedom.  

As part of my development plan for certification as a Deeper Walk Prayer minster, the Lord directed my path to make the acquaintance of and become friends with Julaine Kammrath, a certified Immanuel Prayer minister, and over the last three weeks, Julaine has been assisting me in becoming familiar with Immanuel Prayer, which is a guided prayer session that calls on the Lord to bring to mind memories of joy from the participant’s past. Joyful memories are the foundation on which a relational connection to the Lord is established and from which He can do the work that He wants to do in the participant’s life.  Forming a deeper relational connection with God, emotional healing, and spiritual deliverance for demonic spirits are all possible directions for the Lord to take in IP so although the facilitator and the participant may have a sense in where an IP session may go when they meet, the Lord – The Father, Christ the Son – Jesus – or the Holy Spirit is the one driving the bus and although the human parties may have an idea where the journey will start, God is the one who decides on the different places you will stop and when He will bring you home.  

Yesterday’s divinely guided tour took me back to Victoria Falls in Botswana in 2016, to the darkened confines of a movie theater’s projectionist hallway in 2002, and back again as the Lord caused me to remember the joy of seeing one of the seven natural  wonders of the world at the completion of two-week mission trip and how it caused me to silently and joyfully worship the Lord and to come to the realization that God is everywhere and that He has always been with me even in the darkest hours of my life.  

As I recalled the memory of the joy over the rainbow-producing mists of Victoria Falls and invited the Lord to reveal himself to me in the memory I was joined by Jesus who opened us my mind to see that God wasn’t just at Victoria Falls but that He was with me all the days of my life as I recalled a time in my past, a traumatic time of grief where I paradoxically felt all alone but somehow sensed a presence that I couldn’t explain at the time.  Jesus showed me that yes – God was in the light and the glory of his creation at Victoria Falls as I rejoiced and congratulated myself over a job well done and answered the call to go into the mission field, but God was also with me 14 years prior when I had turned my back on my faith and was grieving the death of my infant son.  

My personal tragedy led to a fog of depression, a descent into psychedelic drugs and a false godless religion, and a search for meaning and truth.  From 2002 to 2010, I looked everywhere but in the direction of Jesus for meaning and purpose and actually thought I was wise because of my rejection of Christianity but the Lord proved His faithfulness to never leave or forsake me and woke me up to the truth of the gospel and pulled me out of the darkness to experience that moment of over a year sobriety and a Christian mission trip accomplished on the shores of Victoria falls in 2016, and yesterday afternoon God took me back to remind me of it and to cleanse it, and to use it to heal me even more.  

As holy and righteous and well-intentioned as that mission trip was and even though I was over a year clean and sober, I still had lust in my heart and even though I was faithful to my ex-wife back then in my body, my marriage was pretty miserable because I was following the Lord and she wasn’t.  In so in my loneliness and unhappiness over my marriage, I imagined having another wife – a Christian wife – and during that trip to Africa, I imagined and dwelt on the idea that one of my fellow missionaries – a younger woman – could fulfill that role. So while I was on fire for the Lord during that trip, doing construction projects, and preaching at a variety of churches and schools, part of my attention was divided as I lusted after a different life with a different woman in my heart.  

So as I was recalling the joy over that mission trip and that concluding visit to Victoria Falls, Jesus led me to confess that sin of the heart, to renounce it, to receive his forgiveness, and to be free of the burden of the emotional adultery that I had in the dark confines of my heart.  Its gone now. I have no guilt or shame over those imaginations and Victory Falls is a pure memory undefiled by my secret lust. Its gone.  

The Lord also touch my chest and healed my heart over some of grief over my son, Holden’s death.  Jesus impressed upon me that He was that one that fixes the broken and He is the one who makes all things new and while He was emphatic in claiming me has His, He touched me to bring more healing and more capacity for freedom, growth, and love to my heart and mind.  

To say my IP session yesterday was a trip would an understatement.  I didn’t know had anything to be healed of, those things were water under the bridge I thought but Jesus touched and healed me all the same.  No guilt, no shame, and no pain remain – just pure joy and the peace that comes from knowing that God is with me, has always been with me, and is calling me to more healing, more freedom, more growth to follow Him and to teach others what I have come to know about Him and about the life that comes to us when we keep walking and talking with God.

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For those who want more evidence for Christianity than my simple encouragements provide, I offer apologist, Frank Turek’s website, https://crossexamined.org/ .

Today’s Bible verses come to us from “The Quick Scripture Reference for Counseling” By John G. Kruis.

( While Bible verses on various topics of Counseling can be found with a quick Google search, we encourage you to purchase this resource to support the late author’s work. (https://www.amazon.com/Quick-Scripture-Reference-Counseling-Kruis-ebook/dp/B00CIUJZT2?ref_=ast_author_dp )

This morning’s meditation verse come from the section on Communication, Gossip, and Lying.

Proverbs 15:28 (NASB)
28  The heart of the righteous ponders how to answer, But the mouth of the wicked pours out evil things.

Today’s verse is the fourth of five passages of scripture that fall under the fifth point of our counseling reference guide resource’s section on Communication, Gossip, and Lying.

5.     Be quick to listen, slow to speak.

Today’s verse tells us to ponder how we answer and warns us to not let our mouths pour out evil things. 

As Christians, we represent Jesus – the righteous One – and so lets think before we speak and be careful not to represent the world or the devil by pouring our foul language or hateful or unkind things.  

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As always, I invite all to go to mt4christ.org where I always share insights from prominent Christian theologians and counselors to assist my brothers and sisters in Christ with their walk.

Today we continue sharing from “According to Your Word: Morning and Evening Through the New Testament” By Stephen F. Olford – A Collection of Devotional Journals: 1940-1941.

As always, I share this information for educational purposes and encourage you all to purchase Olford’s books for your own private study and to support his work.  This resource is available online for less than $10 at many sites.

EVENING READING: MATTHEW 20

“Is it not lawful for me to do what I wish with
my own things?” – Matthew 20:15

This parable preeminently sets forth the spirit of humility and the sense of unworthiness that should characterize the servant of God. The servant should always remember that even after he has done all, he is unprofitable, for he has only then done his rightful duty.

Moreover, “Shall not the Judge of all the earth do right?” (Gen. 18:25). Who is the servant to question His justice?

It is very obvious that the grumbling servants of this parable were more concerned about their pay than about their faithfulness to the landowner who had called them into service, for no other reason than the fact that he was full of grace and kindness. Who am I? Why should I be called – let alone chosen – to serve God, when thousands are not? This must be our spirit.

Lord, I am humbled that You would
call me to serve You.[1]

---------------------------more tomorrow------------------------

Join our “Victory over the Darkness”, “The Bondage Breaker”, "Freedom in Christ" series of Discipleship Classes via the mt4christ247 podcast!

at https://mt4christ247.podbean.com, You can also find it on Apple podcasts

(https://podcasts.apple.com/us/podcast/the-mt4christ247s-podcast/id1551615154). The mt4christ247 podcast is also available on Google Podcasts, Amazon Podcasts, Spotify, iHeartradio, and Audible.com. 

These teachings are also available on the MT4Christ247 YouTube Channel: https://www.youtube.com/@MT4Christ247

Email me at mt4christ247@gmail.com to receive the class materials, share your progress, and to be encouraged.

My wife, TammyLyn, also offers Christian encouragement via her Ask Seek Knock blog (https://tammylynask.blogspot.com/ ),  her Facebook Group: Ask, Seek, Knock (https://www.facebook.com/groups/529047851449098 ) and her podcast Ask, Seek, and Knock on Podbean (https://feed.podbean.com/tammalyn78/feed.xml)

“The views, opinions, and commentary of this publication are those of the author, M.T. Clark, only, and do not purport to reflect the opinions or views of any of the photographers, artists, ministries, or other authors of the other works that may be included in this publication, and do not necessarily reflect the views or positions of any entities the author may represent.”

Encouragement for the Path of Christian Discipleship

Wednesday, January 17, 2024

Storming the Gates and Prayer - Purity 1250


Storming the Gates and Prayer - Purity 1250

Purity 1250 01/17/2024 Purity 1250 Podcast

Purity 1250 on YouTube: Coming Soon!

Good morning,

Today’s photo of a peak experience and a view of what I believe to be Hudson River and the Catskill Mountains in the distance comes from an unknown Facebook friend who shared this mountain view back of June 22nd, 2023.   If this photo is yours, give us a heads up and I will give photo credit where photo credit is due by updating the blog after the fact.  I spent 10-15 minutes looking at the nature-loving usual suspects among my FB friends and, but this photographer is currently still at large.  

Well, It’s Wednesday and although I can’t tell you who took this photo I can tell you that I appreciate their sharing it and thought that it was more than adequate to visually represent our arrival at another “hump day”.   

Speaking of humps, I was sidelined yesterday with a medical condition that is causing pain and discomfort to an area that we want to remain in the shadows and when I saw snow covering my car yesterday morning, I decided to stop ignoring it and seek medical attention to get it resolved.  Although I can’t see it without the use of a mirror, and I don’t want to look at it,  I know what it is from a prior experience, and I know the treatment is required going under the knife or forceps… or whatever instruments are used to surgically remove hemorrhoids.  If memory serves me correctly it’s a quick painful procedure but yesterday I was ready to suffer the indignity and pain to try to get it removed.  

Unfortunately, my best-laid plans to storm the gates of a proctologist’s office were shut down by the bureaucratic miasma of our healthcare industry.  I tried to bluff my way into an unknown doctor’s office under the pretense of getting a referral from my general practitioner, but I couldn’t get the office staff or nurse to grease the wheels and was sent back to my family doctor who took a peak at the affected area to confirm my self-diagnosis and gave me the referral that I know I needed but I wasn’t able to get an appointment until this morning.  So, I’ll have at least two days off from work as I will attempt to get my condition looked at and removed today but I have no degree of certainty of what will actually happen until my 9 am appointment.  

I may have some false memories about my prior experience but I believe that after I was seen and treated in the same visit by the proctologist that I saw for this same condition back in the early years of my recovery – either 2015 or 2016, when I learned about what can happen oh so suddenly in a small doctor’s office. 

For those who don’t know “surgery” isn’t just for the operating room at the big hospital.  You would be amazed and possibly traumatized at what can be done in a small doctor’s office.  Google “test for chlamydia – urethral swab”, “vasectomy procedure”, and “hemorrhoid surgery procedure” to get a small idea of some of the unimaginable things that happen behind closed doors at the urologist or proctologist's office.  So pray for me as I am hoping to be subjected to the indignity of having a complete stranger rip things out of my nether regions!  But I won’t know until I get there.       

TMI,? Perhaps, but I have learned that it is best to be transparent in my walk of faith. Even if it costs me a loss or someone else’s negative opinion, I have learned just to tell the truth about what happens in my life because I never want to be accused of putting on some sort of act – that my faith life and my private life are not the same.  Because I was so wary of phony or hypocritical Christians in my pre-Christ existence, the last thing I want to be accused of being like them.  As I say, if you don’t like the hypocrites in the church, try not to be one. 

Hey MT, what about trying to “storm the gates of the doctor’s office” weren’t you “lying”.  Actually, I wasn’t. Now while I was never told to show up at the proctologist’s office expecting to be seen immediately, I did call my GP’s office and was upfront and maybe a little bit graphic in describing my condition to the clerk on the phone, and I was told to call the proctologist’s office directly and if I needed anything from my family doctor to call back.  So I just took the next step – why call and get shut down by some disembodied voice, when you can just show up and see them face to face to plead for mercy and care?  So that’s what I did.  I figured that with yesterday’s snow, there might be some openings in the schedule, and I could get the referral, after the fact, if I needed – because it didn’t seem required based on what I was told – and could get seen and treated all in one morning.  You never know unless you try and sometimes that proactive approach will work.   The only thing that trying costs you is your time and maybe your dignity as those who reject your attempts may attempt to shame you. But when you are purposeful and don’t care about the opinions of “mere men” there is really nothing to lose.  So after a good bit of confusion by my impromptu visit, the system jumped in to assert its authority to send me back to “GO” without collecting my $200. 

But even after the runaround, there was a small hope that I might get into the proctologist after my “peek-a-boo” referral visit with my primary care provider.  But even though I hoped there would be an available appointment in the afternoon, the best the receptionist could do was schedule me for this morning. 

At no point in my mad scheme was I dishonest.  I reported what I was told accurately and merely tried to advocate for myself to get some expedited help.  

And that’s what we have to do with our walk with God.  We will invariably run into trials in this life and so we should be honest with the Lord and go to Him in prayer to plead our case. We should be persistent in prayer to get the help we need. Sometimes our cries for help will be answered in sometimes miraculous fashion – believe it or not I have prayed for and seen “healing” come on a few occasions – as disease is halted in its tracks or pain or weakness has disappeared – so as crazy as it may sound to some when you need help from God, ask Him for it.  

Granted, not all our prayers will be answered immediately or in the manner that we hope for, but they might. So ask.  

And likewise, accept your cup of suffering with patience, if that is the hand you’re dealt.  I prayed for my bump to go away the day before, it didn’t, and my prior experience has taught me that I need medical attention when this happens – so instead of persisting in prayer – I used what I learned previously, including “storming the gates” – which has worked before - to try to get the treatment I needed.

In our lives, we trust the Lord, we pray, AND we do as much as we can to try to resolve our own problems. If our prayers are answered immediately, great! If we can fix our own mess, great!  But sometimes we will have to do both – pray and put forth continuous effort – and possibly wait a long time – before we receive what we need.  

But in the meantime, we don’t lose faith and we don’t stop trying and we don’t stop walking and talking with God.  

So whatever “hump” you have to get over today, remember that you are not alone in your pain and struggles – The Lord is there to call on and to give you strength to help you to persevere even when your prayers aren’t answered in the way you hope for. 

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For those who want more evidence for Christianity than my simple encouragements provide, I offer apologist, Frank Turek’s website, https://crossexamined.org/ .

Today’s Bible verses come to us from “The Quick Scripture Reference for Counseling” By John G. Kruis.

( While Bible verses on various topics of Counseling can be found with a quick Google search, we encourage you to purchase this resource to support the late author’s work. (https://www.amazon.com/Quick-Scripture-Reference-Counseling-Kruis-ebook/dp/B00CIUJZT2?ref_=ast_author_dp )

This morning’s meditation verses come from the section on Comfort.

Psalm 30:4-5 (NLT2)
4  Sing to the LORD, all you godly ones! Praise his holy name.
5  For his anger lasts only a moment, but his favor lasts a lifetime! Weeping may last through the night, but joy comes with the morning.

Today’s verses fall under the 20th point of our counseling reference guide resource’s section on Comfort.

20.     God’s favor lasts for a lifetime. He turns weeping into rejoicing.

Today’s verses simultaneously tell us of the joy we should have in our relationship with God, which is appropriately celebrated with singing and praise, and the harsh reality that we may need to suffer times of correction or loss on this mortal coil as we learn to follow where the Lord wants us to go.  

When you live most of your life doing things your way, independent of God, the transition to a life of walking in the Spirit can be a painful one as you are guided to reject your worldly ways and free yourself from fleshly or selfish desires and bondages to walk into freedom and a life of righteousness.   In that transition, you may lose some things too. From material possessions, relationships, or even your naivety about what was actually important in life, you may weep over the heartbreak from losing the life that you once knew before you realize the joy of the new life that you have been given.  

But when you find it, you will sing and you will praise the Lord as the mourning is turned to dancing and the laments are exchanged for songs of thanksgiving.   Keep walking and talking with God and you’ll get there.

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As always, I invite all to go to mt4christ.org where I always share insights from prominent Christian theologians and counselors to assist my brothers and sisters in Christ with their walk.

Today we continue sharing from “According to Your Word: Morning and Evening Through the New Testament” By Stephen F. Olford – A Collection of Devotional Journals: 1940-1941.

As always, I share this information for educational purposes and encourage you all to purchase Olford’s books for your own private study and to support his work.  This resource is available online for less than $10 at many sites.

EVENING READING: MATTHEW 10

“Do not worry about how or what you should speak.
For it will be given to you in that hour what you should
speak; for it is not you who speak, but the Spirit of your
Father who speaks in you.” – Matthew 10:19-20

Personally, I feel that in these two verses is a principle that should always operate in public speaking. By that, I mean that the inference here is not exclusively for the servant of the Lord who is delivered up. Notice also, “Behold, I have put My words in your mouth” (Jer. 1:9); “The Spirit of the LORD spoke by me, And His word was on my tongue” (2 Sam. 23:2); “I will be with your mouth and teach you what you shall say” (Ex. 4:12). These are just a few of the many instances where the above principle obviously operates.

 

Speak in living echoes of Your tone.[1]

---------------------------more tomorrow------------------------

Join our “Victory over the Darkness”, “The Bondage Breaker”, "Freedom in Christ" series of Discipleship Classes via the mt4christ247 podcast!

at https://mt4christ247.podbean.com, You can also find it on Apple podcasts

(https://podcasts.apple.com/us/podcast/the-mt4christ247s-podcast/id1551615154). The mt4christ247 podcast is also available on Google Podcasts, Amazon Podcasts, Spotify, iHeartradio, and Audible.com. 

These teachings are also available on the MT4Christ247 YouTube Channel: https://www.youtube.com/@MT4Christ247

Email me at mt4christ247@gmail.com to receive the class materials, share your progress, and to be encouraged.

My wife, TammyLyn, also offers Christian encouragement via her Ask Seek Knock blog (https://tammylynask.blogspot.com/ ),  her Facebook Group: Ask, Seek, Knock (https://www.facebook.com/groups/529047851449098 ) and her podcast Ask, Seek, and Knock on Podbean (https://feed.podbean.com/tammalyn78/feed.xml)

“The views, opinions, and commentary of this publication are those of the author, M.T. Clark, only, and do not purport to reflect the opinions or views of any of the photographers, artists, ministries, or other authors of the other works that may be included in this publication, and do not necessarily reflect the views or positions of any entities the author may represent.”

Encouragement for the Path of Christian Discipleship

Tuesday, December 12, 2023

Waiting on Healing – A Mindful of Christ Encouragement - Purity 1220

 


Waiting on Healing – A Mindful of Christ Encouragement - Purity 1220

Purity 1220 12/12/2023 Purity 1220 Podcast

Purity 1220 on YouTube: 



Good morning,

Today’s photo of a painting of an Old Woman with a blank stare being comforted by a young girl comes to us from yours truly as I capture this haunting scene while visiting the American Painting Salon, on the second floor of the George Walter Vincent Smith Art Museum in Springfield MA on Saturday.  Although there are no information cards in the American Painting Salon to tell us what this painting is called or when it was painted, and I didn’t ask. the artist’s signature reveals that it comes to us from L. Wittich. Even though its name and dates are a mystery to me, Wittich’s haunting work reveals a truth that is timeless, we all grow old and as we do we must come to grips with our own mortality.   The young girl comforting or trying to get the attention of this old woman will one day and look death in the face herself.  

Well, It’s Tuesday and as we move into this week I have death and disease on my mind. Merry Christmas.  Not only was I musing over the issue of mortality because of my visit to the Springfield Museums, as every visit to a museum, anywhere, eventually causes me to ponder the fact that the people who are in these paintings, or owned these antiquities are long dead, only leaving behind their art or possessions and a small information card about who they were – But I also got the news that a dear friend of mine, Bill Hamm, moved onto eternity last Thursday.  

After being diagnosed with brain cancer in 2022, Bill completed six weeks of radiation and chemotherapy and many prayers were said for his healing.  A social media post from June 1st of this year shows Bill smiling with his daughter gardening in the spring sunshine, but now six months later, Bill has graduated to heaven. Sometimes, despite our faithful efforts and the latest medical technology, healing doesn’t come on this earth, but when you have faith in Jesus, like Bill did, death has lost its sting because he lives on in God’s kingdom.   

These are the heavy questions of life and the adequate answers come through faith in Jesus Christ.   Until Jesus comes back though, we will all face those questions of how long do I have and will I be healed.     Recently Mindful of Christ’s Lauren Roskilly shared a blog post about her medical struggles and I sharing it today because it looks at disease honestly but offers hope to those who are “Waiting on Healing”. Lauren Roskilly writes:


"Waiting on Healing  

(https://mindfulofchrist.net/waiting-on-healing/ )

“Are you waiting on healing?

Perhaps you’ve been sick, have a long-term illness, or according to the doctors a ‘non-curable’ disease.

I can certainly relate to that one! My personal journey of 26 years of fainting. In 2018 given the diagnosis of Neurocardiogenic Syncope and being told there isn’t a cure or treatment for it, then dealing with the grief, depression, and mental health difficulties that came with it. To then being told I was healed in 2022, getting my driver's license back, taking the kids on holiday, and going to a speaker conference in Vegas alone.

Then on holiday with friends in August this year, bang! Passed out again, 10 days in hospital, and struggling physically ever since.

Spent the first week cross with God then another few weeks questioning everything and trying to understand. I felt Him say to me that we may not understand certain things and situations but we need to trust Him anyway.

“But when I am afraid, I will put my trust in you. I praise God for what he has promised. I trust in God, so why should I be afraid? What can mere mortals do to me?” - Psalms 56:3-4 NLT

Rewind to March 203, the Lord said “Battle Strategies for Spiritual Warfare” I asked Him what He was getting at, His response was, “The next book.” I responded, “NO THANKS!”

I pulled a bit of a Noah for a week or 2 then returned to the Lord telling Him I was ready to step up to the task.

As I began researching and making notes the attacks began; on my family and finances then in August to today my health.

To the world, it looks like the Neurocardiogenic Syncope (NCS) has returned. Am unable to drive again and only venture out with a willing friend & a wheelchair. When people ask about it and how I am my (honest) response is; “IT IS WELL WITH MY SOUL!”

It is, because I put into action particular strategies both scriptural and Christian Based CBT tools and techniques, in order to wait on my own healing ( and dealing with other attacks too). All of which are included in the book, including the vital point of turning my mind to Christ.

The Spiritual growth journey this last 8 months has taken me on has been awesome! And I thank Jesus every day!

I know that I am healed! I know this is a season and attack.

“So let’s not get tired of doing what is good. At just the right time we will reap a harvest of blessing if we don’t give up.” Galatians 6:9 NLT

Thank You, Lauren, for encouraging us with your life story, where even in the midst of medical setbacks, you show us to keep going and growing with God by directing your thoughts, prayers, and efforts to follow the Lord.    You can get more encouragement and Christian resources from Lauren by going to https://mindfulofchrist.net/ .  

Whether we are healed or not, as long as we live we can experience peace and joy when we trust in and follow the Lord.  So no matter what you may be facing as we move closer to saying goodbye to 2023 and the loved ones who won’t be with us in 2024, keep walking and talking with God because as long as we trust in Jesus and follow the Lord’s call on our lives, we don’t need to fear and can have peace even in times of death and disease.  

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For those who want more evidence for Christianity than my simple encouragements provide, I offer apologist, Frank Turek’s website, https://crossexamined.org/ .

Today’s Bible verse comes to us from “The Quick Scripture Reference for Counseling” By John G. Kruis.

( While Bible verses on various topics of Counseling can be found with a quick Google search, we encourage you to purchase this resource to support the late author’s work. (https://www.amazon.com/Quick-Scripture-Reference-Counseling-Kruis-ebook/dp/B00CIUJZT2?ref_=ast_author_dp )

This morning’s meditation verses come from the section on Church Discipline.

James 5:19-20 (ESV)
19  My brothers, if anyone among you wanders from the truth and someone brings him back, 20  let him know that whoever brings back a sinner from his wandering will save his soul from death and will cover a multitude of sins.

Today’s verses fall under the third point of our counseling reference guide resource’s section on Church Discipline

3. Seek to save an erring sinner.

Today’s verse encourages us to reach out to those who have fallen away because if our efforts cause someone to come back to the Lord, we can rejoice knowing that the Lord used us to save their souls and to put them on the right path to God’s plan for their life.  

Recently, I have received some constructive criticism of how to minister to others compassionately, and I have to be honest that I didn’t receive it well, at first, and I had the immature reaction of just “quitting” and deciding to retire to my room full of books and withdraw from ministering to anyone.  "If what I am doing is going to be subject to criticism, I’ll just stop doing it." I thought. 

 I know, real mature, but it didn’t take me long to realize that the criticism I received was only intended to help me to grow and to be a more effective servant to the body of Christ and that the decision to quit would not only be applauded by the spiritual forces of darkness, it would also leave my purpose in God’s kingdom unfulfilled and take away one more opportunity for people to be encouraged in the truth and to find freedom and healing in Christ.   

Jesus prayed for us to work with Him to help the lost. 

Matthew 9:36-38 (NKJV) tells us  
36  But when He saw the multitudes, He was moved with compassion for them, because they were weary and scattered, like sheep having no shepherd.
37  Then He said to His disciples, "The harvest truly is plentiful, but the laborers are few.
38  Therefore pray the Lord of the harvest to send out laborers into His harvest."

So even though we will face opposition from the world, the flesh, and the devil, and might even receive some criticism from some in the body of Christ, we should never give up in trying to reap a harvest of saved souls and healed hearts for Jesus and His kingdom.

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As always, I invite all to go to mt4christ.org where I always share insights from prominent Christian theologians and counselors to assist my brothers and sisters in Christ with their walk.

Today we are sharing from “God is in the Manger- Reflections on Advent and Christmas” – By Dietrich Bonhoeffer.   

As always, I share this information for educational purposes and encourage you all to purchase Bonhoeffer’s books for your own private study and to support his work.  This resource is available online for less than $10 at many sites.

God is in the Manger – Dietrich Bonhoeffer

ADVENT WEEK THREE -  REDEMPTION

DAY TWO

Taking on Guilt

Because what is at stake for Jesus is not the proclamation and realization of new ethical ideals, and thus also not his own goodness (Matt. 19:17), but solely his love for real human beings, he can enter into the communication of their guilt; he can be loaded down with their guilt.… It is his love alone that lets him become guilty. Out of his selfless love, out of his sinless nature, Jesus enters into the guilt of human beings; he takes it upon himself. A sinless nature and guilt bearing are bound together in him indissolubly. As the sinless one Jesus takes guilt upon himself, and under the burden of this guilt, he shows that he is the sinless one.

Lord Jesus, come yourself, and dwell with us, be human as we are, and overcome what overwhelms us. Come into the midst of my evil, come close to my unfaithfulness. Share my sin, which I hate and which I cannot leave. Be my brother, Thou Holy God. Be my brother in the kingdom of evil and suffering and death.

Sermon for Advent Sunday, December 2, 1928

Then someone came to him and said, “Teacher, what good deed must I do to have eternal life?” And he said to him, “Why do you ask me about what is good? There is only one who is good. If you wish to enter into life, keep the commandments.” He said to him, “Which ones?” And Jesus said, “You shall not murder; You shall not commit adultery; You shall not steal; You shall not bear false witness; Honor your father and mother; also, You shall love your neighbor as yourself.”

Matthew 19:16–19[1]

---------------------------more tomorrow------------------------

Join our “Victory over the Darkness”, “The Bondage Breaker”, "Freedom in Christ" series of Discipleship Classes via the mt4christ247 podcast!

at https://mt4christ247.podbean.com, You can also find it on Apple podcasts

(https://podcasts.apple.com/us/podcast/the-mt4christ247s-podcast/id1551615154). The mt4christ247 podcast is also available on Google Podcasts, Amazon Podcasts, Spotify, iHeartradio, and Audible.com. 

These teachings are also available on the MT4Christ247 YouTube Channel: https://www.youtube.com/@MT4Christ247

Email me at mt4christ247@gmail.com to receive the class materials, share your progress, and to be encouraged.

My wife, TammyLyn, also offers Christian encouragement via her Ask Seek Knock blog (https://tammylynask.blogspot.com/ ),  her Facebook Group: Ask, Seek, Knock (https://www.facebook.com/groups/529047851449098 ) and her podcast Ask, Seek, and Knock on Podbean (https://feed.podbean.com/tammalyn78/feed.xml)

“The views, opinions, and commentary of this publication are those of the author, M.T. Clark, only, and do not purport to reflect the opinions or views of any of the photographers, artists, ministries, or other authors of the other works that may be included in this publication, and do not necessarily reflect the views or positions of any entities the author may represent.”

Encouragement for the Path of Christian Discipleship


[1] Dietrich Bonhoeffer, God Is in the Manger: Reflections on Advent and Christmas, ed. Jana Riess, trans. O. C. Dean Jr., First edition. (Louisville, KY: Westminster John Knox Press, 2010), 36–37.

Tuesday, November 21, 2023

Being Thankful for the Bad Things that Haven’t Happened - Purity 1203

 

Being Thankful for the Bad Things that Haven’t Happened - Purity 1203

Purity 1203 11/21/2023 Purity 1203 Podcast

Purity 1203 on YouTube: 



Good morning,

Today’s photo the setting sun on the horizon pouring out the last night of day over darkened grasslands while it illuminates the clouds above comes to us from yours truly as I capture this “country road” sunset while out walking last Saturday, November 11th.  

Well, it seems like only yesterday that I was up at my countryside home in Easton, and as it turns out I will be returning there again today as circumstances have caused me to utilize a couple of my remaining personal days to make my shortened work week a single day.  My unprecedented weight loss has given me the hope that I can stop using my CPAP machine for my sleep apnea so I had scheduled an appointment to discuss that possibility and when I tried to figure out how I would manage that at the beginning of my work day, I wondered about the possibility of just taking the day off, and hey, if we could take off Tuesday, why not Wednesday too? It turns out I have the time to use and so I pulled the trigger and will now be enjoying an extended Thanksgiving stay-cation in Easton with TammyLyn.  

I was further motivated to make this decision as I was feeling a bit “under the weather” yesterday with what could be “cold symptoms” so I took the time off and started aggressively fighting my possible illness with prayer, rest, zinc, and vitamin C, which has been known to be an effective combination in the past. So even though I was a bit sluggish, I infused my system with fluid – a gallon of water and a gallon of orange juice and took some zinc tablets throughout the day.  I managed to make it through work but by the time I got home all those fluids, and some “MT chicken soup” – oh you don’t want the recipe-  purged my system and made for a fitful night sleep.  But even though I was dragging this morning, I felt I may have turned the tide in terms of the cold symptoms, it’s a fluid situation but I feel my remedy is working as I didn’t “feel sick” as much as I felt exhausted this morning. The occasion sneeze besides, I feel almost normal, tired but “normal-ish” so I pushed myself and am proud to say that I did my morning exercise routine, prayers, and Bible study as I would normally.  

Yup, even when you are “sick”, I can’t encourage you more to do your “spiritual daily practices”. These practices are an expression of who we are in Christ and when we do them even when we are tired or not feeling well, we show the Lord and ourselves how much our relationship with God means to us.  Hey, I’m tired and a little woozy and I don’t know what I may accomplish today – may be not much – but by God, I read God’s word, prayed to Him, and thanked Him for what He has done in my life.   This is who we are as followers of Jesus. This is what we do. 

It's Thanksgiving week, and even if our health isn’t optimal we should be thankful for the health we do have. I recently saw some friends who I hadn’t seen in a while and they were amazed at the amount of weight I lost. They were so amazed I could tell by the look on their face that they were concerned. I assured them that I was healthy and I lost the weight through being accountable for staying on a food plan and by exercising regularly.  ‘It’s not cancer” I joked.  But other people out there won’t be able to make that joke as there is nothing funny about getting that diagnosis.  So even though I am fighting off the symptoms of a cold, I am thankful for my health. We can and should be thankful for the bad things that haven’t happened to us yet.  

Likewise, I have several friends who have experienced the loss of a parent or spouse recently or in the last year, and while I’m giving thanks this year I will remember my mother, father, wife, children, brothers, and extended family that are all doing pretty well. My son, Brennan, has finally been forced into the working world and will be starting a job today.  While my kids aren’t perfect, neither one of them followed in their father’s footsteps when it comes to drugs and alcohol, and even though Brennan was a little slow in getting out in the world, he is on his way now.   So my family is good, overall despite some late-year transitions – they are alive and well and there is hope that the problems they face will be adapted to in time.  

So as we move into the big holiday come Thursday, remember that if you can’t make a list of a bunch of good things that have happened to you this year, I’m sure you could make a list of the bad things that didn’t happen or could have somehow been worse!  

Of course, those life circumstances will always be “a changing” so don’t forget to draw near to and give thanks for the One who never changes, the Lord. He’ll never leave us or forsake us and in Him, we can have peace and give thanks forever.  

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For those who want more evidence for Christianity than my simple encouragements provide, I offer apologist, Frank Turek’s website, https://crossexamined.org/ .

Today’s Bible verse comes to us from “The Quick Scripture Reference for Counseling” By John G. Kruis.

( While Bible verses on various topics of Counseling can be found with a quick Google search, we encourage you to purchase this resource to support the late author’s work. (https://www.amazon.com/Quick-Scripture-Reference-Counseling-Kruis-ebook/dp/B00CIUJZT2?ref_=ast_author_dp )

This morning’s meditation verses come from the section on Church, Communion of the Saints.

Ephesians 1:20-23 (NIV2011)
20  he exerted when he raised Christ from the dead and seated him at his right hand in the heavenly realms,
21  far above all rule and authority, power and dominion, and every name that is invoked, not only in the present age but also in the one to come.
22  And God placed all things under his feet and appointed him to be head over everything for the church,
23  which is his body, the fullness of him who fills everything in every way.

Today’s verses are the first of two passages of scripture that fall under the seventh point of our counseling reference guide resource’s section on Church, Communion of the Saints.

 7. Christ is the head of the church, his body.

Today’s verses remind us that God has given Jesus all rule, authority, power, and dominion over the earth and the heavenlies, for all time, and is the head of the church.  

Jesus declared this sentiment with the great commission in:  

 Matthew 28:18-20 (ESV) where
18  … Jesus came and said to them, “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me.
19  Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit,
20  teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you. And behold, I am with you always, to the end of the age.”

Jesus is not only the highest authority, he shares it with us and we are to use it to bring others into His kingdom and we can be assured at all times because He is with us, always.   

This is our purpose and our destiny – to serve the Lord Jesus and to live with Him forever.  So, we do what he says, we try to live like he lived, and we spend time in His presence to experience the power of His love and rest in His peace.  

 

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As always, I invite all to go to mt4christ.org where I always share insights from prominent Christian theologians and counselors to assist my brothers and sisters in Christ with their walk.

Today we are sharing from A. W. Pink’s – The Arthur Pink Anthology  - a collection of A.W. Pink’s tracts brought together in one book and dispersed here on the blog for your encouragement.

As always, I share this information for educational purposes and encourage you all to purchase A.W. Pink’s books for your own private study and to support his work.  This resource is available online for free as a PDF at many sites, but printed copies of collections of A.W. Pink’s books are available for purchase wherever Christian books are sold. 

The Arthur Pink Anthology – 6

Christian Fools – Part 7 of 8

Now turn to Luke 7:50—“And he said to the woman, Thy faith hath saved thee.” He did not say thy faith is an evidence that you have been saved. “Thy faith hath saved thee.” Now in the light of those last two verses I make this assertion, that believing in Christ is the cause of the sinner’s salvation. But listen closely to this qualification. It is neither the meritorious cause nor is it the effectual cause! You must put these three things together to get the complete thing. The blood of Christ is the meritorious cause of salvation; the regenerating work of the Spirit is the effective cause of salvation; but the sinner’s own believing is the instrumental cause of his salvation. We believe to the saving of the soul. I repeat that. The blood of Christ is the meritorious cause: without that all the believing in the world could not save a soul. The regenerating work of the Spirit is the effectual cause: without this, no sinner would come or will believe with the heart. But the believing of the sinner in Christ is the instrumental cause—that which extends the empty hand to receive the gift that the gospel presents to him—and where there is no personal trust in Christ there is no salvation—“I did not say ‘quickening.’ ”

Now I want to make this very plain and I am going to weigh my words. If instead of you trusting in the sacrificial blood of Christ, you are trusting in something that you believe the Spirit has done in you, you are building your house upon the sand, which in time of testing will fall to the ground.

“On Christ the solid Rock I stand, All other ground is sinking sand.”

If you are building your hope for eternity on what you think or feel that the Spirit of God has done in you, instead of putting your trust in what Christ did for sinners, you are building your house on the sand. And that may apply to some church-members here tonight. O my friends, the gospel of God does not invite you to look inside and pin your faith to what you think the Holy Spirit has done in you; the gospel of God commands you to look outside of yourself, away from all your feelings and frames, to what the Lord Jesus Christ did on the cross for sinners as sinners.

Now my last word tonight is directed to the unconverted, for my text also applies directly to them. Last Sunday evening I said a good deal about the necessity of being quiet, of standing still, of waiting upon God; but I want to supplement those remarks in concluding tonight by saying that those are all admonitions that are given to the converted, and that the Holy Scriptures speak in very different terms to those of you who are unconverted. The Bible does not bid you to sit still, to wait and be quiet; the Bible commands you to flee from the wrath to come. It bids you to strive to enter in at the strait gate. I am quoting Scripture now. It bids you seek the Lord. It bids you come unto Him. It bids you believe in Him, and if you do not you will be damned, whoever you are.[1]

---------------------------more tomorrow------------------------

Join our “Victory over the Darkness”, “The Bondage Breaker”, "Freedom in Christ" series of Discipleship Classes via the mt4christ247 podcast!

at https://mt4christ247.podbean.com, You can also find it on Apple podcasts

(https://podcasts.apple.com/us/podcast/the-mt4christ247s-podcast/id1551615154). The mt4christ247 podcast is also available on Google Podcasts, Amazon Podcasts, Spotify, iHeartradio, and Audible.com. 

These teachings are also available on the MT4Christ247 YouTube Channel: https://www.youtube.com/@MT4Christ247

Email me at mt4christ247@gmail.com to receive the class materials, share your progress, and to be encouraged.

My wife, TammyLyn, also offers Christian encouragement via her Ask Seek Knock blog (https://tammylynask.blogspot.com/ ),  her Facebook Group: Ask, Seek, Knock (https://www.facebook.com/groups/529047851449098 ) and her podcast Ask, Seek, and Knock on Podbean (https://feed.podbean.com/tammalyn78/feed.xml)  

“The views, opinions, and commentary of this publication are those of the author, M.T. Clark, only, and do not purport to reflect the opinions or views of any of the photographers, artists, ministries, or other authors of the other works that may be included in this publication, and do not necessarily reflect the views or positions of any entities the author may represent.”

Encouragement for the Path of Christian Discipleship



[1] Arthur Walkington Pink, The Arthur Pink Anthology (Bellingham, WA: Logos Bible Software, 2005).