To our beloved friends and family in Christ Jesus. By now, most of you have been informed that GHCF has sold our building at 9414 N. Rome Circle in Tampa, and we are no longer meeting at this address.
Shirley and I have taken several trips to our eventual location near Pikeville, Tennessee on the Cumberland Plateau. We recently installed a 16 X 48 storage building on our property of 100 acres in order to store personal and ministry furniture and belongings. We traveled January 8th from Tampa to deliver these items for temporary storage until we have a permanent home built on site. For a period of time (to be determined), we are meeting at our home in Tampa. Upon the sale of our Tampa home, we will continue to assemble at various sites as we pray for the Holy Spirit to lead and guide us on our new journey.
We expect it will take many months for our home in Tennessee to be built. Therefore, we will patiently wait and remain prayerful as we abide in Christ.
Looking Back at 2021
For last year, I had received a word from the Lord—“armor up.” We can now understand the urgency to “armor up” looking back on the tremendous turmoil that has taken place not only in America but throughout the entire world— Turmoil such as covid-19, wild fires, unrest, burning, rioting in major cities, and an unprecedented number of executive orders from our president in Washington. There has been a shift, an evil reset for our nation and the world, from a God-based moral compass to an antichrist satanic agenda. Our children are being targeted and indoctrinated in our schools with socialist, fascist, and communist ideologies by the liberal left.
We are living in a time when we are actually witnessing evil being called good and good, evil! Parents attending school board meeting to make a stand against this evil indoctrination and ideology have been labeled as domestic terrorists by our government.
Though many of us are aware of this evil and radical agenda, we must not be discouraged nor let down our guard. We must be mindful, as believers, that we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against principalities against powers, against rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places. (See Ephesians 6:12)
Therefore, looking back to last year’s word to “armor up”, we understand all the urgency for us to be dressed in readiness and to keep our lamps burning. Stay in this fight and trust our great Captain and Lord Jesus to reveal His anointed strategy and battle plan for us today.
Many Major Battles!
Infanticide is one of Satan’s evil acts to kill, steal, and destroy our infants in (and outside of) the womb. The United States Supreme Court is guilty of allowing over 60 million murders of infants since Roe v. Wade was passed to favor the abortion of these innocent babies — these infant human beings.
It’s time, for the ecclesia, the true believers in Jesus Christ, His church, His Bride, you and me, to rise up, stand up, and speak up and bring the Kingdom of Heaven to this earth in our daily lives.
Remember, whosoever occupies and controls the seven mountains in every nation will dominate that nation! These mountains of influence are:
This coming year of 2022 will require all believers to trust in the Lord with all our heart and lean not unto our own understanding. In all our ways we must acknowledge Him and He will direct our path. (See Proverbs 3:5,6)
We must be ruled and governed by the Holy Spirit’s anointing to successfully defeat the works of Satan in this world. William Penn once said, “No people can be truly happy though under the greatest enjoyment of civil liberties if abridged of the freedom of their conscience as to their religious profession and worship (Pennsylvania Charter of Liberties, 1701). Mr. Penn has also been quoted, “If we will not be governed by God, we must be governed by tyrants.” God intended for His kingdom to come to earth and His will to be done on this earth as it is in heaven.
Question for you…
Has His kingdom come and is His will being accomplished in your life and my life today?
Pray for Jesus, the potter, to make you and me (the clay) into the man and woman He has called us to be. Pray for God to impart to you an understanding of your times like men we read about in 1 Chronicles 12:32.
For the year 2021, we were told to “Armor up!” For this new year of 2022, I hear the Lord saying, “Go forth and engage!”
May we all be reminded what David said as he was about to engage in a battle with Goliath: “Is there not a cause?” (I Sam 17:29 KJV)
Indeed! There is a cause and we must engage the Goliaths of our day! Go forth and engage! Run with boldness in the might and strength of God’s empowerment to the battle line against this evil, like David did, and remove the crown (the head, the source) of this egregious enemy of the church. Do not let someone else do what God has called you to do! Engage the Goliaths of our day, and witness the defeat of this present evil. Rejoice in the victory that is ours through Christ Jesus our Lord.
Love in Jesus now and always,
SQUIRREL!! Do you spend dedicated time alone with God, or are you “chasing squirrels”? It happens to all of us. You just get settled in a quiet place, you’re talking with the Lord, or just listening and the phone rings, or you think of the call you said you’d return, or the laundry that needs to go in the dryer…on and on.
If there’s one thing I’ve learned, it’s that if you want wisdom, understanding and a good day…you better start it with some lone, non-squirrel time with the Lord! In that lone time, be ready to hear from God too. It’s not just a one-way conversation from you to Him. He will speak back to you, to show you, lead you, reveal something to you. You may not like that revelation either, so be prepared. It may be your stubbornness, impatience levels, anger, hidden dishonesty etc. God is not tormenting or rejecting us in these revelations, rather He’s trying to let us know what parts are still broken and need repair.
And…hold on…it gets tougher…sometimes He has to get us alone by various afflictions and hardships, broken hearts, sickness, rejections, broken relationships…oi! But don’t despair. Being alone with Him, no matter how or what the circumstances, is the best thing you can do. It makes all else melt off and lets us see the truly important things in life. All else is just details.
Get to it Soldier, take that hill…and shoot those squirrels!
Thank you for your generous support of the ministry of Great Hope Christian Fellowship Church in 2021 through your regular gifts.
Your ongoing support has enabled us to keep our ministry focused on the Lord Jesus Christ on many fronts. We continue to reach hundreds of hungry and needy souls of all ages with the gospel message through intentional evangelism, Veterans Radio Ministry, veteran events and services, Civil Air Patrol, local high school trainings, national training and support to CAP Chaplain Corps, international prophetic and evangelistic missions, and let us always remember the Over the Fence Ministry. Meanwhile, back home, we continue to build one another up in the faith, exercise and grow in our spiritual gifts, and strive to fulfill our mission for the sake of the body of Christ. Our heart’s desire is to worship our God in all His splendor.
In the meantime, as the ministry expands and transitions, we move forward in God’s plan, much of which is in the unknown. (What fun—what faith!) We continue to go with joy and great anticipation as our God continues to faithfully reveal to us more of who He is and who we are in Him!
Again, we are thankful for your support of the multifaceted ministry at GHCF and for joining us in advancing the Kingdom of God and HIS great light to this dark world.
Daniel was only sixteen when he was taken from Jerusalem into Babylonian captivity in 605 B.C. In chapter nine, he was in his eighties and still retained his perennial devotion and steadfastness to the only true and living God. He was determined and focused to abide by God's law in a far away and strange land. Perennial means "to last or endure an indefinitely long time."
Knowing that his enemies were trying to trick him into disobeying King Darius' decree (not to worship or petition any god but Darius alone), Daniel opened his windows toward Jerusalem and "...he continued kneeling on his knees three times a day, praying and giving thanks before his God, as he had been doing previously." (Daniel 6:10, Proverbs 15:15)
Today, our Father in Heaven is looking for people who are faithfully committed in their devotion and loyalty to Jesus Christ. Like Daniel, who was not swallowed up in a pagan culture, all God's people must strive to "...come out from their midst and be separate, says the Lord. And do not touch what is unclean; and I will welcome you."(2 Corinthians 6:17)
How about you? Do you have a perennial passion, or are you content just being seasonal in a lukewarm relationship with Jesus Christ?
NOW GO LIVE IT!
Are you prepared to defend your faith and hope in the gospel of Jesus Christ?
Peter wrote to the Jewish believers who were struggling in the midst of persecution. “Persecution can cause either growth or bitterness in the Christian life. Response determines result.” (NASB Commentary on I Peter)
Peter encouraged these believers to, “Sanctify Christ as Lord in your hearts, always being ready to make a defense (give an answer) to everyone who asks you to give an account for the hope that is in you, yet with gentleness and reverence. And keep a good conscience so that in the thing in which you are slandered those who revile your good behavior in Christ may be put to shame.
In our world today, there has been such an increase in hostility and egregiousness toward Jesus Christ and His gospel message of salvation to the lost. Unfortunately, no matter what response is given to some who may ask of the hope of the gospel within you, they will go on to walk in despair and darkness. Nevertheless, are you prepared? Are you ready and confident to defend the gospel being empowered by the Holy Spirit?
The word translated “answer” in I Peter 1:15 is the Greek word “Apologia” that means “defense” from which we get the English word, apologetics. Apologetics is the branch of theology that is concerned with defending or proving the truth of Christian doctrines.
We must remember that defending the gospel of Jesus is not an option, for Jesus said, “Everyone therefore who shall confess Me before men, I will also confess him before My Father who is in heaven, but whoever shall deny Me before men, I will also deny him before My Father who is in Heaven.”
Jesus also said, “The mouth speaks out of that which fills the heart. The good man out of his good treasure brings forth what is good, and the evil man out of his evil treasure brings forth what is evil.”
May you be stirred to be more eager to receive God’s word implanted in your heart and most able and willing to give an answer (defend) to anyone who asks you, of the hope you have in the glorious gospel of Jesus Christ!
References: I Peter 3:15-16, Matthew 5:13-14; Matthew 10:32-33; Matthew 12:34-35
Take a piece of blue taffy and a piece of yellow taffy – two distinctly separate objects – and bring them together. Make them intimate with each other. No, seriously, take the time to do this!
Wrap them, smash them, twist them together; press and stretch and turn them together. Whoa, this is close contact! After a short time, you will begin to see streaks of the yellow and blue running in various directions. Exert more pressure and mold them together. Crush and push in all directions. Smash them between your palms and fold and refold. Notice they are warmer and softer? You get the idea. In time, what do you have? The whole lump is green!
This is like our relationship with Jesus. The more we desire and allow Him to work with us, the deeper and more intimate our relationship becomes until we can no longer distinguish beginnings and ends. Put on the mind of Christ – my mind is not distinguishable – He in me and I in Him so that I may say, "I have been crucified with Christ and I no longer live, but Christ lives in me. The life I live in the body, I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me." (Galatians 2:20)
NOW GO LIVE IT!
We know that Satan is behind all blasphemy, ridicule, and mockery of God. It is his mission to garner disrespect, rebellion, and insurrection against the rule and authority of God. In fact, insurrection comes to us from the Latin word, insurgere, meaning to rise up.
God knows a life of disobedience to Him is a life destined to crash and burn. For example, Zedekiah, the young king over Judah and Jerusalem did evil, stiffened his neck and hardened his heart against turning to the Lord God. Others also including priests and officials chose to follow the abominations of the heathen nations around them.
God, in His great mercy, sent word to those defying His authority again and again because He had compassion on them. However, they continued to mock the messengers of God, despised His words, and scoffed at His prophets until His anger could not be restrained and there was no remedy. (See 2 Chronicles 36:11-16)
Today, God and Jesus are also being openly mocked in our society, but “Do not be deceived, God is not mocked; for whatever a man sows, this he will also reap.” (Galatians 6:7)
NOW GO LIVE IT!
We must approach our most high God with the deepest honor and reverence. He is God. He is in charge and He is calling all the shots. Because He is also good, you can rest more in trusting Him to know what He is doing.
Things often go wrong or against us because of the world (others), the flesh (you) or the devil (Satan), not God. Yet the most High and Holy One sometimes is the only one to bear the brunt of our foolish anger when things go wrong.
He says to be of good cheer when various trials and sufferings happen. Is God crazy? No way! It’s just that, often, we are just so ignorant.
1 Peter 4:12, 16, 18 and 19 tells us, "Beloved, do not be surprised at the fiery ordeal among you which comes upon you for your testing, as though some strange thing were happening to you…But if any one suffers as a Christian, let him not feel ashamed, but in that name, let him glorify God…And if it is with difficulty that the righteous is saved, what will become of the godless man and the sinner? Therefore, let those also who suffer according to the will of God entrust their souls to a faithful Creator in doing what is right.
Whew!—better seek Him now, with all your might! Endure the fire—it’s producing pure gold!
God so often cautioned His people to not forget and stray from His statutes and laws. When the people obeyed, there was life and when the people rebelled and disobeyed without repentance, there was judgment and often death.
God would have us to remember that we were created by Him and for Him. Our purpose on this earth is to love, worship and serve God alone. David kept the memory of God’s glorious acts ever before him and said, “…and men shall speak of the power of your awesome acts; and I will tell of your greatness. They shall eagerly utter the memory of your abundant goodness and shall shout joyfully of Your righteousness.” In these verses remembrance is with an implication of honor, worship and celebration. David also said “Remember the wondrous works He has done” and “Remember His covenant forever.”
Moses addressed the people of God and said, “only give heed to yourself and keep your soul diligently, lest you forget the things which your eyes have seen, and lest they depart from your heart all the days of your life: but make them known to your sons and your grandsons.” He also said, “Remember the day you stood before the Lord your God at Horeb when the Lord said to me, ‘assemble the people to Me, that I may let them hear My words so they may learn to fear Me all the days they live on the earth, and that they may teach their children.’”
Be encouraged to be more passionate and diligent to worship God—Make known His deeds! We must live in memory of our new covenant relationship we have with God—a covenant of eternal life through Jesus Christ who shed His blood and redeemed us from death, hell and the grave.
References: Genesis 12:1-3; Deuteronomy 4:1-24; Psalm 145; I Chronicles 16:7-36; I Corinthians 15:1-2; Psalm 30
NOW GO LIVE IT!
When our lives reflect the love of God, those around us will feel His presence. Be the vessel through which Christ brings the dry bones of this dying earth back to life.