Are You Ready? :: By Holly Spate

It is hard to imagine our world getting any crazier than it already is, but it seems each day tops the last, and things are happening at such a pace that it’s hard to keep up. With all that’s going on in our personal lives, in our cities, our country and the world, it can be so tempting to let our minds and hearts get both distracted and discouraged. It can be so easy to get negative and feel overwhelmed. It can be so easy to feel squeezed by stress and paralyzed by fear.

It’s within our human nature to react to what’s happening around us. It’s normal to have feelings and to respond to those feelings. However, as followers of Christ, Jesus made it clear that we are to live by faith, not by our feelings, as feelings can and will lead us astray. Feelings can fester deeper when we give in to them…when we allow ourselves to take our focus off of our Heavenly Father…leaving our faith behind. We desperately need to resist the urge to give in to our feelings and our fears. When tempted to fear, we should not look around but look up…to Him. We should run to Him. We desperately need to be close to Him, to trust Him, and to put our complete faith in Him, no matter what we see, feel, or experience in this life. Seeking Him alone will calm the fears and bring calm.

As we live out our days, and we see the chaos, the destruction, the darkness, we need to remember how desperately we need Him…how desperately all of humanity needs Him. John 15:5 says, “I am the vine; you are the branches. If you remain in me and I in you, you will bear much fruit; apart from me you can do nothing.” Philippians 4:13 reminds us, “I can do all this through him who gives me strength.”

If we abide in Him, if we press into Him, if we hold to His truths and the promises He made, we should not fear. 1 John 4:17-18 states, “This is how love is made complete among us so that we will have confidence on the day of judgment: In this world we are like Jesus. There is no fear in love. But perfect love drives out fear, because fear has to do with punishment. The one who fears is not made perfect in love.”

No matter what is going on in this world, no matter what evil ensues, we are told we can have peace and calm in His presence. No matter who sits in government, we can have assurance in knowing God sits on the throne. No matter how dim things seem to be or how dark things get in this world, we can know with certainty in our hearts that the Son still shines. In John 16:33, Jesus states, “I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world.”

Our Father is our shield, our hope, our joy, our Savior! He’s our SAVIOR! He came to save us…to rescue us. He is pure love. He is perfect. He is Omnipotent (all-powerful), Omniscient (all-knowing) and Omnipresent (all-present).

Thankfully, God did not leave us alone in this world to fend for ourselves. He has given the gift of a helper…the Holy Spirit.

He has also blessed us in so many other beautiful ways. He has given us the gift of the Bible, His holy Word. He has given us the ability to pray, which He states is powerful. He has given us His trustworthy promises. He has given us His armor.

Ephesians 6:10-18 states, “Finally, be strong in the Lord and in his mighty power. Put on the full armor of God, so that you can take your stand against the devil’s schemes. For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms. Therefore put on the full armor of God, so that when the day of evil comes, you may be able to stand your ground, and after you have done everything, to stand.

“Stand firm then, with the belt of truth buckled around your waist, with the breastplate of righteousness in place, and with your feet fitted with the readiness that comes from the gospel of peace. In addition to all this, take up the shield of faith, with which you can extinguish all the flaming arrows of the evil one. Take the helmet of salvation and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God. And pray in the Spirit on all occasions with all kinds of prayers and requests. With this in mind, be alert and always keep on praying for all the Lord’s people.”

He has given the gift of being joint heirs…sons and daughters of the King of Kings, the maker of heaven and earth. We have an amazing inheritance: “Now if we are children, then we are heirs—heirs of God and co-heirs with Christ, if indeed we share in his sufferings in order that we may also share in his glory” (Romans 8:17).

And, one day, we will have the gift of a new body and a new home. Each day we have now is a gift from Him, but we have been promised a bright future beyond all of our days in this present life. We have the blessed hope and the assurance in knowing He is returning for His own.

If you are living a life without Him, if He is not your Heavenly Father, if you have not accepted Him into your heart…come to Him today. He died for you. He loves you with a perfect, unconditional love. No matter what sins you’ve committed, He will forgive and wash you clean. He wants to be Lord of your life. Accepting Him into your life will be the greatest decision you will ever make…ever.

Romans 10:9-11 says, “If you declare with your mouth, ‘Jesus is Lord,’ and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved. For it is with your heart that you believe and are justified, and it is with your mouth that you profess your faith and are saved. As Scripture says, “Anyone who believes in him will never be put to shame.”

As the world rushes into chaos, you, as God’s child, can rush toward your Heavenly Father… pressing in ever closer to your Creator, the One who formed you, loves you and promises to never leave or forsake you. Run to your Father’s arms…it is there you will find rest, comfort, assurance, protection and peace.

Remember, as the world grows darker, the Son still shines. As the world grows more evil, the Son still reigns. As God’s child, you are in the BEST hands possible.

As we see and experience the birth pains and groaning of the earth increasing, we see more clearly that the day is fast approaching when we will soon meet Him in the clouds. One day (maybe very soon), the day will arrive when He will call us home.

Imagine what a glorious day that will be… a day when we stand in the presence of our Creator, our Savior, our King! A day that will be the end of this life and the beginning of a bright, beautiful new life for all eternity.

Are you looking to Him?

Have you accepted the gift of His salvation?

Are You Ready?

spate.holly@gmail.com

Could It Be Today? :: By Holly Spate

 

There is a dark cloud hanging over America… a dark cloud that extends beyond our borders, reaching into every country on earth. Never before, since the days of Noah, has the world been in so much chaos. Everything appears upside down… good is called evil, and evil is called good. It is a time of uncertainty… an unsettling time, driving people to a perpetual state of fear and panic.

It seems every day that a new crisis is unfolding both at home and abroad. It is difficult to keep up, as things seem to be racing forward. We are hearing of wars and rumors of wars as the Bible talks about. We are being told to prepare for food shortages and continued inflation. We are hearing plans of open borders and the demise of the dollar.

Those who are paying attention to true news sources (although hard to find these days) are learning a little more about our leaders and their backdoor deals, secret agendas, planned chaos, and obsession with riches, control and power.

Critical race theory is being pushed, history is being erased, men are being invited into women’s locker rooms, and the nominee for Supreme Court Justice can’t define what a woman is. Rioters get rewarded while peaceful protesters are targeted. Sanctuary cities are forming, not to protect the unborn but to protect those who wish to abort their unborn child. Things are truly upside down and inside out.

Aside from salvation in Christ, life is the greatest gift God has ever given. A society that no longer values life is a society that is the most depraved and darkest imaginable. This is a prime example of “love waxing cold”…very cold.

Matthew 24:3-14 speaks of the condition of the world right before Christ’s return:

And as he sat upon the mount of Olives, the disciples came unto him privately, saying, Tell us, when shall these things be? and what shall be the sign of thy coming, and of the end of the world? And Jesus answered and said unto them, Take heed that no man deceive you. For many shall come in my name, saying, I am Christ; and shall deceive many. And ye shall hear of wars and rumours of wars: see that ye be not troubled: for all these things must come to pass, but the end is not yet. For nation shall rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom: and there shall be famines, and pestilences, and earthquakes, in diverse places.

“All these are the beginning of sorrows. Then shall they deliver you up to be afflicted, and shall kill you: and ye shall be hated of all nations for my name’s sake. And then shall many be offended, and shall betray one another, and shall hate one another. And many false prophets shall rise, and shall deceive many. And because iniquity shall abound, the love of many shall wax cold. But he that shall endure unto the end, the same shall be saved. And this gospel of the kingdom shall be preached in all the world for a witness unto all nations; and then shall the end come.”

We are seeing all these things converging at increased speeds. Every day, selfishness takes center stage, and the love of many is freezing over. We are witnessing the unraveling of morality in the world and seeing, with our own eyes, scripture jumping out of the Bible and into our everyday newsfeeds. Believers and unbelievers alike know something is happening. Evil appears to be in full swing and on steroids.

We are learning of nefarious plans by those who have hidden in the shadows for years and are now emerging from the dark to implement their desires in broad daylight.

We are told a new world order is coming full speed and we will one day, very soon, be enslaved and own nothing and be completely happy about it.

Those who plan for the demise of all things good are wide awake…. they seem to never rest or sleep. Psalm 36:1-4 says, “The transgression of the wicked saith within my heart, that there is no fear of God before his eyes. For he flattereth himself in his own eyes, until his iniquity be found to be hateful. The words of his mouth are iniquity and deceit: he hath left off to be wise, and to do good. He deviseth mischief upon his bed; he setteth himself in a way that is not good; he abhorreth not evil.”

The blatant sin and war against all peoples and things good and godly are evident and in our faces 24/7.

As evil waxes worse, we are reminded that these things must happen before the time of the end of the age. As Jan Markell likes to say, “Things aren’t falling apart; they are falling into place.” So thankful for God… who knows the beginning from the end and is in full control at all times! If we have Him, we have everything and nothing to fear.

In the midst of all that’s taking place in the world around us, we are lovingly reminded in scripture that we are not to be surprised or fearful at what we are seeing. We are to be at peace and not afraid as we put on the armor of God and continue to trust our heavenly Father in ALL things. He is our provider, comforter, protector, healer and Father. He promises to take good care of His children despite what’s going on around us.

Be Encouraged:

“Fear thou not; for I am with thee: be not dismayed; for I am thy God: I will strengthen thee; yea, I will help thee; yea, I will uphold thee with the right hand of my righteousness” (Isaiah 41:10).

“For I the Lord thy God will hold thy right hand, saying unto thee, Fear not; I will help thee” (Isaiah 41:13).

“For God hath not given us the spirit of fear; but of power, and of love, and of a sound mind” (2 Timothy 1:7).

“The Lord is my light and my salvation; whom shall I fear? the Lord is the strength of my life; of whom shall I be afraid?” (Psalm 27:1).

“But now thus saith the Lord that created thee, O Jacob, and he that formed thee, O Israel, Fear not: for I have redeemed thee, I have called thee by thy name; thou art mine” (Isaiah 43:1).

“And the Lord, he it is that doth go before thee; he will be with thee, he will not fail thee, neither forsake thee: fear not, neither be dismayed” (Deuteronomy 31:8).

“Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil: for thou art with me; thy rod and thy staff they comfort me” (Psalm 23:4).

“Be careful for nothing; but in every thing by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known unto God. And the peace of God, which passeth all understanding, shall keep your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus” (Philippians 4:6-7).

“The Lord is on my side; I will not fear: what can man do unto me?” (Psalm 118:6).

The Bible is clear…. Jesus is clear and tells us in advance what is expected. Therefore, we should not be alarmed.

All we are seeing in the world today should confirm clearly to us that God’s Word is 100% true. As we see all these things coming together, it should stir us to get our houses in order, pray for the lost, and share the gospel while we still can.

Brothers and Sisters in Christ… our time on this earth may be fast approaching. No one knows the day or hour, but we do know the rapture is imminent. Our King is coming; our redemption draweth nigh. Are you ready?

Could it be today?

spate.holly@gmail.com