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Wine and Spirits

Have you ever walked into a store and asked the question:  “Where are the spirits, I would like to buy some spirits.”

There is a controversy concerning the use of alcohol.  My definition of alcohol, the kind that people consume, is beer, wine, whiskey, bourbon, champagne etc. etc. etc.

Wine and Spirits; I don’t know what the definition of Spirits is there, but I do know a spirit is something that can be Holy or it can be unholy.  The Holy Spirit is sent to and for the benefit of a person who believes is Jesus Christ as their Savior and Lord.   A spirit can also be from the dark side.  Spirits must possess a  body to operate in the earth realm.

My parents divorced as a result of alcoholism, a process that began when my Dad was a teen-ager.  It happened that during prohibition, my Dad’s mom died and his father married a woman who had been his school teacher.  She did not like my Dad and made life miserable for him.  The result was that she told him to get out.  He was 16.

There was a neighbor who made “bathtub gin” and he needed runners for it.  My Dad and his friend were hired.  That is where the road to death by alcohol began.  It ended with my Dad dying of cancer, a dry drunk.  The good news is that at the very end he received Jesus as his Savior.

There is a beginning for everything as well as an end.  Nothing is static.  Nothing!

No one is my family was a “teetotaler”.  My grandmother kept blackberry brandy on hand for times when we would get sick.  I recall one time when I was very sick.  She gave me some brandy, I recall it burned in my throat, she heaped blankets on me and said to “sweat it out”.

My uncle and aunt, my mother’s sister, began their process with alcohol with beer.  My uncles first job was driving a beer truck.  From there he had jobs that always involved alcohol in some fashion.  His last job was managing the city liquor store.  At their home alcohol was served before, with, and after a meal.  The end of the story is that, while at first the use of alcohol was controllable, in the end it controlled them.  My aunt became a hopeless alcoholic, dying from cirrhosis of the liver.  My uncle died penniless and sick.

They had lived the high life.  They had no children, by their choice, and their incomes were always spent on being happy.  There was a small house that was their sanctuary.  They had a lot of things, they loved being at the lake fishing, their boat was their pride and joy and there were always fine cars and friends to party with.  But in the end, alcoholism impoverished them and claimed their lives.

My observation is that with alcohol as with many other things such as nicotine and illegal drugs, there is no such thing as just a little.   I believe there is a process that begins when you take the first taste, the first hit.

Again, from my observation, some people take to alcohol instantly, they love it from the first taste.  Some people don’t care for the taste of it but because it is the culture they move in, they learn to like it.  Other people hate the taste and cannot imagine why anyone would want to drink it.  But, this is not the controversy.

The things above are only matters of preference.

Here is the controversy…

There is a group of people who call themselves Christian, who see no problem with alcohol consumption, as long as it is wine.  This is not a matter of taste, they simply believe that the Bible shows that it is acceptable and they have their own vineyards where they grow the grapes to make the wine.  They believe this makes it holy, and thus makes it acceptable.

There are other believers who see the warnings in the Bible concerning alcohol and the resulting bondage that comes with it, and they want nothing to do with it.  Maybe, like me, they have seen what the process has done to their family.

I come from a broken home.  My mother and father’s marriage was destroyed by alcohol abuse.  Because beer controlled my Dad, in the end he could not hold down a job.  My grandmother tried to help as best she could, but with six children to support the county welfare system was asked to help.  In the end they refused to continue support as long as my Dad was in the house.

Every one of my siblings used alcohol when they were young, even though they had the example of what it could do to a person’s life.  Only when they met Jesus and received Him as their Savior and Lord did they forsake that lifestyle and only then did they end the downward spiral caused by alcohol.  To this day, each of us hate alcohol use and abuse.

I don’t know what your stand is friend, but I know that a decision must be made and we will be responsible to God for that decision.  So consider carefully the things I have laid out here.  Ask yourself this question:  When I stand before God to give an account for my life will it have pleased the Lord?  Will He say to me, “Well done, good and faithful servant enter in to the joy of the Lord.”  God and you are the only ones who can answer that question.

My favorite verse from the Bible is this:  “As for me and my house, we will serve the Lord.”

Sharing the messages God puts on my heart in this forum is done mostsly out of obedience, but also, part of it is my desire to get you to thinking.  God is the judge and the Bible says that He tests and tries the “sons of men”.  That being the case, I suggest that you seriously consider what pleases Him.  From that vantage point make your decision.

May the Lord bless you today with His love.  May His love fill every vacancy in your soul.

Joy

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

TIME

Today, while it is today….

How much time do you have left on earth?  Do you think your age is the determining factor?

She walked into the doctor’s office to have a routine yearly exam.  When she left the office and walked to her car, she was in shock.  The diagnoses…Cancer!  She was a mother of 5 under the age of 10.

Just beginning to live.  An unexpected car accident on his way home in the early morning hours took his life.  He was 18.

An older couple, on their way home from a restaurant, he had a seizure and lost control of the car, it hit an abutment and she went into eternity.

Time.  Every human being is given an allotment.  What are you doing with yours?

Words matter.  Words can change circumstances.  Words can change you.

Are you ”wasting time”?  Maybe you are ”killing time” or maybe you are “having the time of your life”.

Ecclesiastes 3:1 The Amplified Bible:  “To everything there is a season, and a time for every matter or purpose under heaven.”

Words matter.  Words can change a situation.  Words can change you.

Perspective, viewpoint, angle, context, aspect, appearance.

”Don’t believe anything of what you hear and only half of what you see!”

”You are what you eat.”

”You get back what you give out.”

Are these statements truth, lie or half-truth ?

There is only One absolute:  The God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob!

There is only One Word that can change your life, alter your perspective and give you a life full to overflowing : Jesus, the Word become flesh.

“As it is written, things which eye has not seen and ear has not heard, And which have not entered into the heart of man of all that God has prepared for those who love Him.”  I Corinthians 2:9 NASB

Time.  How are you spending it?  “Awake thou that sleepest !”  Ephesians 5:14 KJV

”It’s time to smell the flowers!”

 

LIfe

This morning I am thinking of Mary. She has been on the hearts of so many people, due to the fact that she almost died. (January 17, 2017) Miraculously she was given the gift of life.

Today Mary goes home from the hospital.  This is how her friend put it on Caring Bridge:

“Mary will be restored to her home (and her children) tomorrow. Yes, HOME!!  We can all share in her joy.  Praise God!!! After her return home (and I am sure countless hugs and kisses) she will be visited by Home Health Care to determine need for level of care. Please continue to pray for Mary’s healing, their family, and God’s blessing on this next big step in Mary’s healing.”

I think so often people get confused about miracles and healing. What Mary experienced at the hospital when she could breathe without the help of a breathing tube was a miracle.  (see previous posts)

The doctors thought she would more than likely die.  The breath in her lungs was instant, the moment the tube came out she could breathe on her own, and she began to recover. That miracle was the beginning of Mary’s healing.

Her lungs began to immediately respond and get better and better. The healing process is still going on, which is why prayer for complete healing is necessary.  Mary has had several treatments of chemotherapy and will continue to do so.  Our continued prayer stand is that Mary be completely delivered from cancer, that “she will not die but live and declare the works of the Lord.” Psalm 118:17

How often do we pray and ask but do not believe we receive.  In the gospel of Mark Jesus said, “Therefore I say unto you, What things soever you desire when you pray, believe that you receive them and you shall have them.”   Mark 11:24 KJV  To see we must believe and receive.

Faith is the necessary ingredient for miracles and healing.  It is not hoping or wishing that the thing you desire is yours because you want it to be.  It is not mental assent to what the Bible says is true, or even that Jesus died for you to have it.

Faith is knowing that healing is part of the new covenant in Jesus blood, that God wants you whole body, soul and spirit; you believe and receive it.

There are times when you must stand in faith to recover. There are times when healing does not manifest right away, then you must know that you have been heard and God will do everything He can do.  Sometimes timing is an issue.

God gave each of us a will.  We can choose.  When a person has been battling against sickness or disease and they are tired and don’t want to fight anymore, your will and prayers will not be imposed upon them. God will give them what they want, He will take them home to Heaven, if they are His children.

In our day in America, every source is embalmed with unbelief and doubt…except one…the Bible.   A person may be strong in the Lord in one area but weak in another because of doubt or unbelief. There is no perfect human being.

The Jewish people have a word that incorporates the wholeness that God wants His people to walk in, it is the word Shalom.  I heard someone say that it means, “nothing missing and nothing broken.”

How do we get to that place of wholeness?  Jesus is the answer.

The Bible says, “Except you be converted, and become as little children, you shall not enter into the Kingdom of Heaven.” Matthew 18:5 KJV

Jesus taught that we are to be like little children. The hallmark of a child is trust. Implicit in childhood is total trust in their parent. They don’t question where their next meal is coming from, whether they will have clothes or shoes to wear or a place to sleep.  (Yes, I know that there are aberrations)

If a loving parent provides for the needs of his children, how much more will our loving Heavenly Father provide for our needs.  We are His family.

There are some things that come upon all mankind, like rain, natural things, earthly things, but there are some things that are only for family.

Jesus taught that God is Our Father in Heaven, that He loves His children and wants to see us succeed in every area of life.

He wants us to be whole, so much so that He sent The Word made flesh, Jesus, to live here on earth for approximately 30 years to identify with us and pay the price for sin that we could not, so that we could have access to our Father.

When Jesus finished His assignment, He declared: “I have glorified thee on the earth: I have finished the work which thou gavest me to do.”  John 17:4 KJV

We can trust our Father in Heaven. We can trust Jesus our advocate and His Spirit our helper, comforter, teacher and guide.

Each of us has been assigned a specific time to be here on planet earth.  For such a time as this we have come. God has a plan and a purpose for each of us.  It is for us to discover what that plan is.

It is written in Psalm 139:16 KJV “Thine eyes did see my substance, yet being unperfect; and in thy book all my members were written, which in continuance were fashioned, when as yet there was none of them.”

Kat Kerr says that we were all little spirits with the Father and when the time came for us to come to earth, He knit our little spirit to that dot of flesh in our mother’s womb and we became a living soul. Your life began at conception.

Mary has been given a new lease on life, a new opportunity.  She has fought, her family has fought, extended family has fought, friends and God’s family have fought against the cancer that the enemy sent to kill her and steal her from her husband and children. He did not win!

In the court of Heaven God the righteous judge sat down on the bench.  The advocate for Mary (Jesus Christ the Righteous) presented His case, the enemy (formerly known as Lucifer) presented his case.

Jesus said, “I paid the price required for Mary to be healed. My blood was shed; I was whipped with a cat of nine tails, my blood flowed out on the ground, the bones in my back could be seen.  Only then did they stop. I did this out of love for Mary, to satisfy the demands of the law. I ask the court for acquittal.”

The enemy arose with great pomp to make his case against Mary.  He dragged up every little thing that she had done from the time she was able to make her own decisions.  It was not a pretty picture.

He said, “Your honor knows that I am nothing if not fair.  I have shown the court that Mary is deserving of death. I ask for conviction.”  He sat down, smugly sure that he had won.  He could not wait to get his hands on her. He had plans.

God stood up.  The enemy trembled, that was not a good sign.  He had seen Him do that before and it did not bode well for him.

Turning to Lucifer, the fallen one, He said, “I have heard you out.  You have accused Mary of heinous crimes.  You have belittled her, you have laid out before me a picture accusing her of things she has not even done.  Fair? no, never since your fall have you ever been fair.  There is no justice in you at all.”

Turning to Jesus He said, “I have heard the case that you have made for Mary.  You have done everything possible to secure her healing.  I have seen that Mary wants to be healed and I have heard the many prayers for her life.  Mary gave me her life when she was 12 years of age.  She is my child.  I have made my decision.”

The gavel went down.  “Decision made for the plaintiff.”  Case dismissed.

Jesus has never lost a case.

What about you friend?  If you stood in the courts of Heaven would there be enough evidence to convict you?

Today is the day of salvation.  Turn from sin and give your heart to Jesus, all of the old life will be washed away in Jesus blood, you will become a new man.  A new life will begin.  Ask Jesus to immerse you in the Holy Spirit and He will bring you power to live that new life.

God loves you, so do I.  Joy