Tag Archives: Apostle Paul

“Come… and Help Us!” Guest post by Alan A. Lutz

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Bonswa, My Friends:
That’s “Good Afternoon” in Creole.  I pray this prayer letter finds you doing well in the Lord!  I am leaving for Haiti next Thursday and wanted to ask for your prayer support.  Without Jesus’ blessing I can’t do anything of lasting value, but with a strong prayer brigade I trust wonderful things will be accomplished!
I was reminded this week of the Apostle Paul’s call to Macedonia (recorded in the Book of Acts, chapter 16).  It was an extraordinary beginning of the Church on the continent of Europe!  An amazing vision, a humble prayer meeting, and a storm of opposition were the circumstances.  Our missionary Savior, who came to seek and to save that which was lost and so build His Church, was mightily at work!  Jesus directed Paul, Silas, and Timothy to Philippi, He opened Lydia’s heart to the Gospel, overpowered Satan’s obstacles, and brought a jailer and his family to saving faith as charter members of the new congregation.
Please pray for an extraordinary beginning to a new MINTS Study Center in Bohoc, Haiti.  With God all things are possible!  I look forward to sharing fruits of the trip with you in a couple weeks upon my return.  For know, please lift these bullet points before the throne of grace – it’s the Mission Control center in heaven:
  • God’s protection over my travels and family Sept. 3-8 
  • Pastors Georges Cadet and Fred Delauriers who will serve as Coordinators of the Study Center, and others who with them will form the Study Center Committee
  • God’s wisdom in meetings next weekend to get the Committee established 
  • Guidance in recruiting and registering students for the new school
  • God’s Spirit to anoint every dimension of the trip and bring encouragement to our brethren in Haiti
Please pray DAILY, and remember the people of Haiti and the Dominican Republic TODAY who are in the path of Hurricane Erika!  God be with you and bless you for partnering in this work.
 
All for Jesus,
 
Pastor Alan

His Sheep Hear His Voice

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“My sheep hear My voice, and I know them, and they follow Me;”
John 
10:27

I was a newly wedded pastor’s wife, recently returned from a delightful honeymoon.  I was enjoying some early morning reading time, on a hot South Texas day.  While perusing 1 Timothy Chapter 1 in my Bible, suddenly verse 15 leapt off the page.

“Here is a trustworthy saying that deserves full acceptance: Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners—of whom I am the worst.”  (NIV)

The Holy Spirit impressed upon my heart, that like Paul, He was going to use my past to glorify His name, and help others. At times He chooses the “worst of sinners” to minister for Him.  The impression was so very clear, I was suddenly filled with joy and anticipation.  I had been so ashamed of my background.  Constantly plagued by the taunting of the evil one.  “How can you be a pastor’s wife?”  “If people only knew….”
Yet for this brief moment the fear and shame were gone.  The veil departed and I distinctly saw a purpose for my painful past.  Yes, I was called to be a pastor’s wife, just like Paul was called to be an Apostle, in spite of my/his past.

I excitedly called to tell someone close to me, when she quickly shut me down.  “No way.” Your past is just that, the past.”  “Leave it there.”  “Keep it private, or people will use it against you.”

And just like that, the euphoria was gone.  The lies returned.  I shut my mouth.

Friends that was 24 years ago, and God recently brought that day back to me, as clear as if it were yesterday!

I am His sheep, I did hear His voice 24 years ago, and I will follow!  I have also learned a valuable lesson.  When the Good Shepherd speaks to our hearts through His Spirit, that doesn’t mean it is going to happen that day, or that year.

Jesus was 30 years old before His ministry was launched.

Moses was 80.

If you’ve heard His voice, wait for His timing, then He will give you grace to obey and follow Him! But remember, His voice will never contradict His Word.

“There comes a time to stop fearing God’s plan—a flash-point where we stop thinking about ourselves and we start thinking about what we can do for others.”
Jo Ann Fore, When a Woman Finds Her Voice

I’ve found my voice.  You can too.  Take the pledge!

http://joannfore.com/take-the-pledge/

And pre-order your copy of, When a Woman Finds Her Voice, by Jo Ann Fore.

http://www.amazon.com/When-Woman-Finds-Her-Voice/dp/0891123873

Weapons of Righteousness

Momentary & Light Afflictions
 
In 2 Corinthians 4:17, the Apostle Paul refers to his afflictions as “momentary & light.” 
 
Yet, let’s read a little more about them:
 

“But in everything commending ourselves as servants of God, in much endurance, in afflictions, in hardships, in distresses, in beatings, in imprisonments, in tumults, in labors, in sleeplessness, in hunger…” 

2 Corinthians 6:4-5.

 
Wow! Do those sound “momentary and light” to you, dear reader? 
Let’s look at verses 6 & 7 to help shed some light:
 
“….in purity, in knowledge, in patience, in kindness, in the Holy Spirit, in genuine love, in the word of truth, in the power of God; by the weapons of righteousness for the right and left.”
 
Paul and others could endure the terrible hardships they faced by the purity, knowledge, patience and kindness of the Holy Spirit.  They didn’t fight their attackers with earthly tools. They had genuine love, the word of truth, the power of God…and the weapons of righteousness!  
 
How about you dear ones?  Will you respond to your attackers, or the hardships you are facing, in the flesh, with fleshly tools?  Or will you respond with the weapons of righteousness?  
Perhaps you wonder, what is a weapon of “righteousness”?  
 
When referring to the relationship between person and person, The New Concise Bible Dictionary, defines righteousness in this way: “An action which conforms to the requirement of relationship and promotes well-being and peace.”
 
Are you feeling like your circumstances are too hard? Too overwhelming?  Too unfair to respond in righteousness?
Listen to all the “yets” in verses 8-10.
 
“By glory and dishonor, by evil report and good report; 
regarded as deceivers and YET true; 
as unknown YET well-known, 
as dying YET behold, we live; 
as punished YET not put to death, 
as sorrowful YET making many rich, 
as having nothing YET possessing all things.”
 
Remember, dear ones!  The afflictions are temporary, the glory they are producing in us, eternal!  
 
Will you respond in righteousness today?