Tag Archive | Jesus

Grandpa – The E.R.- and Life to Come

I continue to contemplate relationships this morning. Relationships among family, friends, acquaintances – all of it A-Z.

Then I started to think about The E.R. and Grandpa (My Father-in-Law)

Week of May 29 –

We were finishing breakfast at the hotel when the call came in. Grandpa indicated he was calling 911. He didn’t know what was wrong but he couldn’t breathe. This would have been the 2nd time in just a couple of months he would have called for ambulance assistance. We told him we would drive over and take instead.

We high-tailed ourselves over to his condo as fast as we could and I met him outside his door…25 minutes later. Upon our arrival, he didn’t even wait for me to knock or ring the door bell.

He looked pale and weak. I could tell he struggled walking because of his labored breathing.

That might have been the longest drive to the ER I have witnessed. Now I understand why the ambulance exists.

There is an intersection near where he lives that can get really bottle-necked. Just the right number of cars and the wrong timing of lights (along with driver distractions or less than ideal temperaments) and you have the perfect combination of driving delays. Even if he had been in an ambulance, I’m not sure how the medics would have navigated this particular area of congestion…

At one point, there was a white Mercedes sedan we had just passed in another lane. I heard commotion behind us and looked out the back window. The driver had gotten out of his car and was yelling at a pedestrian, and the pedestrian was yelling back at him. I didn’t see what had transpired but the air was thick with tension. I was glad when the light finally turned green.

We arrived at the ER check in window. I signed Grandpa in. The wait wasn’t too long. I wasn’t sure which of us would accompany him into Triage. As they called him, my husband volunteered me to go…which I would have been fine with but I personally felt it wasn’t my decision to make. I asked Grandpa…”which of us do you want to go with you?” – he indicated his son.

The kids and I sat in the waiting room…fortunately we’d brought things to pass the time. The kids were on the electronics, I continued reading The Book of Mysteries.

After an hour or two, a short examination indicated no sign of a heart attack so he was next in line for a lung x-ray.

Later that day, early afternoon I had the chance to join them in Grandpa’s hospital room. What an experience…

Sitting in there made me realize how “vapor-like” life is. I spent time observing the comings and goings of hospital staff and EMT’s. Thinking about how these medical personnel would deal with a crisis when one actually happened.

The Dr. finally came in to discuss the initial results of Grandpa’s tests. His lung xray showed that he might be developing pneumonia. But the best way to determine how his heart was doing was to conduct a “Stress Test” which would require him to stay there and be monitored for at least a couple of days. Well, in Grandpa’s world…that is not an option and he was gonna have no part of it.

They proceeded to get his papers ready to release him and let him go home for 3 days of rest.

That evening, I just couldn’t hold back on asking him about Jesus.

Last fall, that is last September…he had an experience where one night – after he went to bed, He saw (and spoke with) Jesus in Heaven. The morning after this happened, he couldn’t find the words to even speak at first. Everyone in the family was concerned that maybe he’d had a stroke or something had happened to impair his speech. In reality, he was so stunned he just could not find words to describe the indescribable. My husband took the kids to school…

After they left I looked at Grandpa and paused…and finally said, “Ok Grandpa, talk to me”

He turned his bewildered gaze toward me, and said…”I don’t know how to explain this, but I saw Jesus – I saw God last night.” My eyes widened….”well don’t stop there, keep going!”

His description of what happened the night before were nothing short of just amazing. I think back about that discussion and those couple of hours that we took to talk and relish what he heard and said.

But back to the original story….my concern over the months since that experience were wondering if he still remembered it because his memory was waning. If he remembered that experience…then God wasn’t done with him yet.

“Grandpa, do you remember seeing Jesus last Fall, in a vision, while you were visiting us?”

“I do…why?”

“I just wanted to know if you could remember or not since you have occasional memory challenges.”

“That experience is not something I could forget because it was real. I was really there with him. It was not a dream. Being there with Him was as real as talking with you here, now.”

“Well, that’s good to hear, cause I know you used to doubt that anything beyond this life existed…”

Grandpa responded almost matter-of-factly, “There is most definitely life after this one…this life is not the end.”

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Spiritual Gifts: Video Series Part V

Operating in The Gifts of The Spirit

Part 5 – Faith & Words of Knowledge

Shared from WP: Testimony

I have read enough books, watched enough videos, prayed & read The Word to know that h-ell is just as REAL as
Heaven. Regardless of how ready you think you are, please read this and then go back to the Bible & re-read Acts 2.

I SAW MY FRIENDS IN HELL – Testimony of Eric Nana Bridges – http://wp.me/p1u9gL-gZ

The Daily Battle: Be Clothed, Be Ready!

Are you ready for the battle before you?

We do not fight against flesh and blood.

We battle against a force more sinister and conniving.

If you think the biggest challenge you face is in front of you…

…facing you, tangible…think again.

What is invisible and unseen is just as real as anything you can touch or see.

Are you WEARING the clothes you really NEED?

The enemy would love for you to believe that what you see in this world is ALL there is.

Be prepared for what you can’t see.

Prepare your heart,

Prepare your mind

Ready your soul.

Clothing yourself EACH day with the

Armor of God: His Spiritual ARMOR

Ephesians 6:10-18 New Living Translation (NLT)

The Whole Armor of God

10 A final word: Be strong in the Lord and in his mighty power. 11 Put on all of God’s armor so that you will be able to stand firm against all strategies of the devil. 12 For we[a] are not fighting against flesh-and-blood enemies, but against evil rulers and authorities of the unseen world, against mighty powers in this dark world, and against evil spirits in the heavenly places.

13 Therefore, put on every piece of God’s armor so you will be able to resist the enemy in the time of evil. Then after the battle you will still be standing firm. 14 Stand your ground, putting on the belt of truth and the body armor of God’s righteousness. 15 For shoes, put on the peace that comes from the Good News so that you will be fully prepared.[b] 16 In addition to all of these, hold up the shield of faith to stop the fiery arrows of the devil.[c] 17 Put on salvation as your helmet, and take the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God.

18 Pray in the Spirit at all times and on every occasion. Stay alert and be persistent in your prayers for all believers everywhere.[d]

Praying this for yourself is POWERFUL

Praying this for another, is intercessory prayer.

God HEARS it ALL.

I am a major fan of the music video and song that I posted with this. I am also including the lyric video for it because I am a WORD lover and believe understanding the words of a song are as important as the melody that carries it.

Just Remember, we are told that God’s Still small voice is always there, ready to speak to us — if we will only BE STILL.

“Be Still” Lyric video from StorySide B

 

 

We are not alone.

Speak Truth.

God’s Truth.

If God is for us & who can be against us!

Have a Blessed Weekend,

Kenzel

Scarred Hands: Revelations for Easter

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I wasn’t going to write a post this weekend. I’ve been wanting to write since last week but haven’t felt both prompted and compelled simultaneously.

Until Now.

My Mother-In-Law died 2 years ago. My Father-In-Law had basically slipped into a major depression over time. I knew what was going on wasn’t a good thing. Neither of my In-Laws (to my knowledge) are or were believers. Of course, I have no idea what might have transpired during the last moments of my MIL’s life.

Over the last two years I have been praying for my FIL (hereafter, known as “Grandpa”). I have often felt like my prayers were going unanswered. I prayed in faith and hoped that my cross-country pleading might make some difference; however remote.

Good Friday has never been an easy day on the calendar for me. This year I felt especially sad. I couldn’t begin to explain it if I tried. It was, for lack of a better description: Holy Grief: True Sorrow.

We have the Passion of The Christ in our home movie collection. Traditionally, I play the movie and reflect on Jesus life and meaning. This year, I just couldn’t do it. I also couldn’t wait for the day to be over

About eight p.m. that same day, the phone rang. It was Grandpa calling to check in with us. Something he rarely does. Grandpa isn’t a phone talker. On this occasion though, something was different and the difference became more obvious as the conversation progressed. I first sensed the change in his voice and just followed it.

For the last 24+ months Grandpa had basically lost his will to live. I’ve known for a long time that the moment he buried my MIL, he’d made up his mind that life wasn’t worth living.

My heart has been broken and my Spirit struggling since. The Doctor’s he has been seeing are very aware of his situation and we’ve all been working to provide encouragement and get him help.

Each night or as often as I could, I would lie down and pray for Grandpa’s soul. Pray that his spirit would experience the Light of God’s Love. That the scales on his eyes would fall off and his heart softened. I am still in the dark about where he is in this process but I’m fairly certain something is UP.

I had prayed that since I couldn’t be closer to help him that God would protect him and keep him safe. I knew the enemy was targeting him. I knew Grandpa was in serious trouble. I think God saw my heart was spiritually bleeding.

Grandpa has, of recently, been befriended by a widow named, Ruth. Ruth is apparently very active in her church. About 3/4 of the way through Friday’s phone conversation I began to recognize there is a woman named Ruth in the bible.

Almost immediately, after I hung up the phone, I started to hear it.

“The prayers of the Saints (righteous) availeth much.” (from James 5:16)

But what was really weird was that I didn’t just hear this scriptural verse once…I heard it nearly the rest of the evening and even today. Over and over and over again. It wasn’t bothersome. In fact, as I continued to hear it I went from a state of shock to disbelief to humble tears.

Grandpa had mentioned before we hung up that at his last appointment that he had likely been only days if not hours from death.

I knew that The Spiritual Warfare the enemy had waged on him had been intense. To be honest, over the course of time, I’ve almost felt like Professor Snape in Harry Potter. During the scene of the Hogwarts tournament he is using his “Powers” to counteract the “Spell” the enemy is using to attack and harm Harry. In a very real sense, have been acting as an intercessor for Grandpa.

It is becoming more and more clear to me how important prayer is, and how and why it works.

Just like Dr’s give us medicine to make us better, we need help to combat the forces of evil. Except there is no earthly premise for fighting darkness. The principalities fight under their own set of rules. Rules that are mostly unknown, unseen and not understood by man. Well, except ONE: Jesus.

And that leads me to the Revelation He gave me about The Cross.

We have The Cross which provides us with the Resurrection. But I’m realizing The Cross has intense symbolic meaning. Symbolism I’m beginning to realize I might never have received without the Holy Spirit.

Crown of Thorns

Everyone talks about the crown of thorns. The crown appears to mock his majesty on earth. However, I don’t think I will ever be able to look at that crown the same way again. Why?

Because it represents our battle AGAINST Spiritual Warfare.

Consider the multitude of ways the enemy attempts us and lure us into sin. Then think about how many thorns were on that crown.

Also think about the fiery “darts” that are thrown at us (mentally) on a daily/hourly basis to take our eyes off Jesus. Those fiery darts are meant to make us bleed – very much like the thorns that penetrated Jesus scalp. Our mind is a battlefield and without Jesus we are ill-equipped to handle the opposition.

The Nails and The Holes

Then there are Jesus hands and the nail holes.

I think about how scripture says that we are not to fear those who can kill us physically, but cannot kill our soul. We are to fear the one who can condemn our soul. (Matthew 10:28)

Jesus outstretched arms are his submission to God’s ultimate plan.

But what really floored me was when he drove his point home (from a prior blog post) that we truly can take nothing with us the moment we decease. Everything we do in this life is measured by those holes that scarred Jesus’ hands. Our life is measured by God like sands through an hour glass. His nail scarred hands are the hour glass and akin to the narrow road.

Few people FIND him and are willing to recognize him as the bridge to eternity. Too consumed with the enemy’s darts of earthly and material wants they wave away eternity for the temporary brilliance of seductive treasure and riches. Except those treasures and riches are temporal. They will rot, wither, deteriorate and fall apart long after we are gone. Our souls either go to hell (if we don’t accept or turn away from God) or Heaven if we accept and repent.

Interesting thought to note: If our earthly treasures can’t go with us to heaven, what would fit through a nail hole in Jesus hand’s? For me, the answer is now obvious: Our soul. Those nail holes create that invisible entrance to heaven. The only way we get to go to heaven is by accepting Jesus redemption on that cross. His arms, which are open wide to heaven, signal total surrender. Those nail holes though…they provide the narrowest pathway possible: to a place of peace. Something we get only from Jesus.

The Feet that Walk the Earth

Finally, the nails in the feet of Jesus.

Though you and I live on a sin-filled earth (the nail in Jesus feet is the enemy, he stalked and accused Jesus, just like he does us) and the his feet attached to that wood are the time we must spend understanding God’s infinite grace while we are living.

We’ve got to persevered and realize that understanding doesn’t come easily but It WILL come. The more we pray and asking God to reveal himself through his scriptures, the greater the likelihood he will.

SeeK Him.

The pages of The Bible will come to life for YOU. If you truly want God – Immanuel (God with Us) to be part of you…Just ASK.

Dear God,

Thank you. You are Sovereign and Holy. You have given us a reason to keep going. You provided a way for us to move from Sin to Salvation. Though we are entirely unworthy…Thank you for Jesus.

And All God’s Children Prayed: Amen

Happy Easter – It’s Resurrection Sunday!

Blessings,

-Kenzel

Ask-Pray-Seek

Do you have a Bible?

Is it sitting on a bookshelf gathering dust?

Why?

I wrote earlier this week about Facebook. About how God directed me to step away from it.

That was a week ago. I have been facebook-less for going on 7 days.

I didn’t realize that I’d become addicted to it. God did.

God’s called me to write. So, I’ve got this blog…is it enough?

He’s been encouraging me to write my memoir – and it got a healthy start during Nanowrimo.

But I haven’t trusted Him enough to keep going.

But more than that, I’m paralyzed about exposing the darkness of yesterday, my darkness and the dirtiness of my un-holy carnal self.

Yes, I am broken…but as my creator He is also my healer.

Yes, I am a sinner: but He died and resurrected to cleanse every LAST sin.

Yes, I belong to HIM.

Apparently, many people alive on the planet today believe that when the disciples of the Bible passed on the, the “time of miracles” had disappeared with them.

I say, NO WAY.

God is God. That has never and will never change.

As He said “I will never fail you nor forsake you.” (Hebrews 13:5)

I re-watched the adventure movie series Indiana Jones over the weekend.

I loved watching the movie as a kid but I really appreciated watching it again 30+ years later! I was stunned at how much this series was Biblically based. Indi searches for the “Ark,” for the “holy grail” and “chalice.”

Indiana searched for it, just like everyone of us has since the day were were born. Because we were Born in God’s image. (Genesis 1:27)

The Bible is a rich resource. It is FULL of answers.

It is also full of parables and (as I can attest) can also be very confusing and read like “gibberish”

It need not read like gibberish…if you are truly SEEKing God and earnestly looking for answers.

Every one of us is looking for something. In our state of needy sinful-ness we will all give in to temptations we have no business messing with.

At some point, God HOPES we’ll take notice of Him. At some point He hopes we will repent, accept and surrender.

Why?

Because WHEN we do it opens up opportunity in our lives to blessings we would have missed and we remained outside of God’s Will.

When you ask God for help, it’s as if you are talking to God. Talking to God is a form of prayer (“praying without ceasing” 1 Thessalonians: 5:17) and when we open up the Bible and take TIME with God to READ scripture HE IS ABLE to provide answers through HIS Word!

The more often you open that dusty, book – shelved-Bible the more often your thirst for hearing from God will CALL you. God’s word isn’t antiquated, outdated or without meaning.

God’s Word has more meaning now than at any point in history. It is literally, History coming to LIFE in front of us. It is a Living Book. It is Powerful.

Part of knowing where the Power lives is understanding HOW to USE it.

Trust God. Trust His Word. We don’t have to be Brave and Courageous, we just have to be filled with the Holy Spirit. Letting him work THROUGH us; we CAN be unstoppable.

Dear Lord,

Help us to reach out to hold your hand. Help us to not fear ASKing, dreaming BIG dreams and discovering who YOU are. We can find the answers if we will open up our Bibles and allow YOU IN!

Lead us to your throne and help us to love like you! Amen

Blessings,

-Kenzel

The Gifts of Christmas: Find your Key

Gifts of Christmas - Tree

Gifts of Christmas – “Tree”

My alarm went off at 5:30 this morning. A few minutes later, I opened up my Jesus Calling devotional and proceeded to dig into scripture.

The passages referred to were Isaiah 41:10, Psalm 9:10 and James 1:2

Isaiah 41:10New Living Translation (NLT)

10 Don’t be afraid, for I am with you.
    Don’t be discouraged, for I am your God.
I will strengthen you and help you.
    I will hold you up with my victorious right hand.

Psalm 9:10New Living Translation (NLT)

10 Those who know your name trust in you,
    for you, O Lord, do not abandon those who search for you.

James 1:2New Living Translation (NLT)

Faith and Endurance

Dear brothers and sisters,[a] when troubles of any kind come your way, consider it an opportunity for great joy.

I spent some time meditating on those verses. Really letting them sink in. Immersing my being in the richness of the words. If you’ve kept up with this blog for any length of time, you know why I write; out of obedience.

I recently started searching for a “real meaning” of Christmas. I wasn’t sure what I expected. I didn’t know what I would find, if anything, or if my search would end in frustration. Leaving me grasping at straws.

It was in the middle of all this that God spoke to my Spirit.

“You are troubled, Child but you need not be. The answers you seek lie within. Tell me, wasn’t the Christ Child was my gift to you?”

“Indeed, Lord.”

“And, what was His purpose?”

“Salvation and Grace”

“True, Dig deeper.”

“Deeper, how?”

“You feel like the meaning of the season is lost on this world.”

“Yes.”

“It’s not. You hold The Key….

I gave you and ALL my Children The Key long ago. Jesus is my Gift to the World. Obviously not everyone embraces or accepts His Gift. But my Gifts are presented with multiple purposes. Jesus was just the start. Jesus Birth is a celebration. But the celebration you seek is not one most people look for. The true meaning of this season (not holiday) is FOUND in the Holy Spirit. You remember the first time you EVER felt the Spirit?

It was the first Christmas after your Mother had just died. You were at Christmas Eve Candlelight Service with your Father, and Grand Uncle and Aunt. You were singing hymns; “Silent Night” and “Little Town of Bethlehem.” Not coincidentally, you were holding your candle, “Shining a Light in the darkness.” You gazed from the candle to the Altar and while standing in the pew you felt that slight breeze blow past and threw you. It gave you goose bumps.”

“The Holy Spirit…”

“Yes.”

“Why are you telling me this?”

“You asked, you’ve been searching. You’re heart aches, wonders and pleads. Yes, I see it ALL.”

“You also see my sin then…”

“I’ve seen sin that I’ve since washed white as snow…you are sanctified. You cling to it in shame and fear which impedes my purpose, WE are working on that TOGETHER. Time is my device. Focus on ME. Jesus changed the world but I need YOU.”

“Me? Why me?”

“Why? Because you are Willing. Because you WILL listen. Because you LOOK for me. For those reasons you fulfill a purpose in my plan.”

“What can I possibly bring to your plan?”

“Do you remember how My Son said:

John 16:7New Living Translation (NLT)

7 But in fact, it is best for you that I go away, because if I don’t, the Advocate[a] won’t come. If I do go away, then I will send him to you.

The Advocate he referred to is the Holy Spirit. The Holy Spirit is what you felt that Christmas Eve. The Holy Spirit is REAL and powerful. The Holy Spirit IS what gives this season its meaning. Your struggle to find fulfillment this Christmas. Christmas in this world is also real but it is  carnal and THAT is the reason your soul has been troubled. It’s the Spiritual Gifts you have, that I have blessed you with that MAKE this season the reason for celebration.  Each of you, EACH of MY Children has a Gift. In your case, I had you picked from before birth to write.”

“But I’m not that good at it…”

“You sound like Moses. You are listening to the wrong voices, Child. I have equipped YOU. That is ALL you NEED. I do not make mistakes.”

“How do I…?”

“Come find me and seek me, just like you have been. You will find me in MY WORD. The more time you spend there, the more often you will receive. I will Bless you often and abundantly.”

“But writing is so hard for me. And there are other challenges creating barriers.”

“It is hard because I want to stretch you. Stretching you will benefit others reading this. And I know of your barriers. Don’t let them distract you. FOCUS on ME. All things are possible with ME.”

And

YOU have found the meaning of Christmas. It is within you.

It is the Holy Spirit Living in YOU; The tingle. The warmth. The Truth.

YOU are LOVED.

Of all the songs that Pentatonix has released, this is the one that resonates within me. I feel like The Little Drummer Boy. I have little to give, but what I give, I give with my whole heart. A truly humbled heart.

Dear God,

Thank you for today’s Blessings. Moments like this move me. I pray others will be Blessed by reading this. And that as we approach the celebration of our Savior’s birth our hearts are filled with gratitude…for All the Gifts you’ve given us.

And ALL God’s children said: Amen

May the Holy Spirit reveal the Gift(s) you’ve received this Christmas!

Blessings,

-Kenzel

(And Meg, He wants you to know…He is by your side. Always, to the end of time).

Searching For Christmas: A Letter to Mom

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Dear Mom,

I don’t know why God put it on my heart to write to you this morning.

I guess ’cause in hindsight, yesterday was a Monday and I didn’t “Armor Up” the way I should have. Yes, I took it to God at the end of the day.

But I find myself tearing me down, even though I know I’m supposed to be forgiven.

Is this what you felt like every time you stumbled?

I remember you always told me when I was little I could talk to you about anything. And as I recall, I did.

I miss that. I miss you.

Although I manage to stumble through Mothers Day, Christmas feels 10x harder. Even with two awesome kids. It seems like I shouldn’t feel this way.

Christmas is about Joy and Peace and a Prophecy of Promise. But with this Shemitah year, it seems like a roller coaster ride on “steroids!” And you know I am NOT fond of roller coasters!

Christmas, the holiday, is the time of the year I fell in love with, largely because of you. God may have given us a Baby to save our Eternal Souls but He gave each of us a Mom to hold, hug, and turn to when the World wasn’t kind.

I really don’t want to go on and on. I don’t want to blubber my way through this. So, I am going to find my way back to my original goal. To let you know something that feels really important today, to tell you “several something’s” – even though you left this world behind decades ago:

I Love You.

I’m so glad I was your daughter.

As little as I remember about you, I know I am becoming more like you everyday. I can feel that in my Soul.

Besides my Creator, you were my biggest fan, my cheerleader and the wind beneath my wings.

Without you, there would not have been a me.

I know you wanted to stay here with me and watch me grow from your baby girl into a young woman. I guess God figured He had that covered. Whatever His purpose or plans for my life …like you, I trust in Him.

God is GOOD, ALL the time. And. God is ALWAYS GOOD.

My search for Christmas goes on. Even if it’s tucked away, I know God will lead me to it.

God Bless each of you. There is a Hope to be found that will bring us what we need! Just ask and it will be given to you (Matthew 7:7)

Blessings,

-Kenzel

Sunday Praise – My Heart is Yours

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I’ve not posted this week but I’ve been working on several pieces.

God has been present among us and continues to move. I feel Him and sense Him. I really HOPE you do, too.

He is watching us and with us always. Do not doubt His promises.

 

Isaiah 55:8-9New Living Translation (NLT)

“My thoughts are nothing like your thoughts,” says the Lord.
    “And my ways are far beyond anything you could imagine.
For just as the heavens are higher than the earth,
    so my ways are higher than your ways
    and my thoughts higher than your thoughts.

 

 

Advent has arrived. Take 5 minutes from your day to open scripture. He is waiting for you.

Find Him: between Genesis and Revelations

Morning or night…even if you can’t sleep – He is listening, He is there, wondering where YOU ARE?

He is in the Stillness, even while we sleep. (Genesis 6:11-16)

Call on His Name and He will answer!

Blessings,

-Kenzel