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Unshakable Hope

Before I begin this post, I feel like I owe the readers of my last post an apology.
When I started this Unshakable Hope blog over six years ago, I set some guidelines for myself. One of these guidelines was replying to every comment made. I figure, if people took the time to read and comment on a post, I at least owed them a “Thank You.” Besides, I enjoy interacting with my readers; my friends.

I didn’t reply to even one comment. Mary and I read every comment on our own, and then she read them out loud to me. Thank you so much for your encouraging comments and for your prayers – both of these help us to persevere.

As I mentioned in the perseverance post on my birthday, Friday, October 5th, I planned on posting it on September 23rd, but I woke up that Monday morning with…

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The Warrior’s Prayer:

Heavenly Father,
Your warrior prepares for battle.

Today I claim victory over Satan by putting on
the whole armor of God!

I put on the Girdle of Truth!
May I stand firm in the truth of Your Word so
I will not be a victim of Satan’s lies.

I put on the Breastplate of Righteousness!
May it guard my heart from evil so I will
remain pure and holy, protected under
the blood of Jesus Christ.

I put on the Shoes of Peace!
May I stand firm in the Good News of the
Gospel so Your peace will shine through me
and be a light to all I encounter.

I take the Shield of Faith!
May I be reader for Satan’s fiery darts of
doubt, denial, and deceit so I will not be
vulnerable to spiritual defeat.

I put on the Helmet of Salvation!
May I keep my mind focused on You so Satan
will not have a stronghold on my thoughts.

I take the Sword of the Spirit!
May the two-edged sword of Your Word
be ready in my hands so I can expose
the tempting words of Satan.

By faith your warrior has
put on the whole armor of God!

I am prepared to live this day in
spiritual victory! Amen.

Contributed: Dr. David Jeremiah

Turning Point

If you find yourself in a hard place today, take courage, my friends. Only in Christ is true peace to be found. He reminded us in His word that in this life, we would have troubles, but we can find courage because He has overcome the world (John 16:33).

In spite of the struggles we may face in this life, we never walk alone, for He is with us. He will never abandon us in our trials or leave us to work it all out on our own.

Jesus never called us to embrace the world and all it offers. But He calls us to take up our own cross, and to follow Him, to be salt and light, and to walk in love.

It’s a whole new day ahead. And He has plans for you, for me, to make a difference in these days, in the life of another soul, for His purposes.

Praying that His huge grace, wisdom, and strength cover us today. And that, in Him, we will find freedom from worry as we let go of the stress that clings too tightly, the pressing needs of tomorrow, and struggles we battle today, so that we can fully embrace His gift of forgiveness and love.

He’s the Overcomer. And we are never alone.

Peace.

Contributed: Courtesy of Crosswalk Ministries

God is Good!

On Christmas Day 2011 I posted a story.

It was a story of the beginning of a healing from cerebral palsy (see link).

The testimony came from a friend, who had been walking with the family concerned.

My friend, now a grandmother, is a pillar in the church, a giant in the land, who calls things that are not as though they are … and she is a giant because of the battles she and her husband, also a giant, has fought and won … she is a giant because she has laid her life down and God has raised her up to walk in great authority over the land …

My friend has been healed of cancer, foster cared over 70 babies and children, all the while caring for her son who was diagnosed with cerebral palsy …

While not denying the “facts” she stood her…

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Do you feel that you are facing the darkest time of your life right now? If so, who is facing it with you? Do you have the support of your family, friends or church folks? You may be going through various trials and tribulations, which may include anything from sicknesses, addictions, financial setbacks, barrenness, joblessness, hopelessness, demonic oppression, business failure, ministry failure, marriage problems, singleness, or you may have lost your salvation, because you are not where you are with God right now. Alternatively, you may also have never been saved, and struggling to find out who God really is, and if He exists, or even care about you. Whatever your circumstances are today, you will need to know that no matter what you are going through, there is a God who sits high on the throne. As a result, your tears are not going unnoticed today, as He loves and cares for you more than you ever can think of. “Greater love hath no man than this, that a man lay down his life for his friends” (John 15:13).

When the very people who you think should have your back, turn against you while you are facing your darkness, God never will. However, what you need to understand is this, “Weeping may last only for a night, but joy comes in the morning” (Psalms 30:5). With that being said, sometimes you have to face the darkness, before you can face the light. Notwithstanding, the very same people who disregarded you, and isolated you while you were facing your darkness alone, are the same people who will run back to you when your troubles are over, and you are now facing the light. God sometimes isolates you because of where He is taking you. He has a greater plan and purpose for your life that will bring Him greater glory, and elevates you to your destiny. Consequently, He has to place you in the darkness to see how you will handle yourself, and also for you to see who will go through the darkness with you. Some people will want to revel in your blessings when your tribulations are over, and you have passed your test, but they did not want to bear the burden with you. Therefore, God will use your darkness to let some fake and toxic people leave your life for good. You need to just ride through the darkness now, as your light is coming soon. However, remember that the people who left while you were going through your darkness, God does not want them to come with you in the light, as they weren’t good for you in the first place.

Accordingly, you may be walking through the valley of the shadow of death right now, but you should fear no evil, because God is with you. It is not what the devil or people decide will happen to your life, it is what God decides will happen. The devil or people will spread rumors and wish bad things for you, but they cannot override God’s purpose for your life. God is supreme over all the elements in the world, and no one cannot prevent God from blessing you, unless you allow them to. You need to hold your head up high today, and focus on where God is taking you. Additionally, you need to also understand that the same power that raised Christ from the dead (Romans 8:11) is the same power that can heal and deliver you today. He still have that power, as He is the same yesterday, today, and forever (Hebrews 13:8). God does not change; therefore, He can still do anything, because nothing is impossible for Him. So when people think it is over for you, God’s power will set you free from whatever you are facing today, if you only have a little faith to persevere through your darkness. He will justly reward you when He sees your faith and perseverance (Hebrews 11:6).

As stated, people today who are of the devil will rejoice and spread rumors, lies, and gossip when someone is going through their darkness, not understanding that God is getting ready to bless them in the light. However, because those people are of the devil, they don’t understand that what goes around also comes around. Their darkness is coming, as everyone has to go through tribulations (John 16:33), and hopefully when their darkness comes, they are able to handle it. Consequently, they too will need help and support, but if they did not provide it to others, they may find themselves isolated throughout their tribulations.

Let us pray one for another, and be supportive of each other, as today will be someone’s darkness, but tomorrow will be yours.

What is sacrificial praise?

It is very easy to praise God through the good times. However, how easy it is to praise God when times are bad? You may have just lost your job, have a child who is wayward, or gotten a doctor’s report that is not good, or you may be waiting on a break-through where it seems God has forgotten your prayers. Conversely, how can you keep on praising God through your bad times? This is what it is called – sacrificial praise. Accordingly, the scripture says, “By him therefore let us offer the sacrifice of praise to God continually, that is, the fruit of our lips giving thanks to his name” (Hebrews 13:15).  You still have a praise, although you are facing the worst times of your life. Accordingly, this is the best praise that you can give God.

God is the same today, as He is yesterday, and He will be the same forever. Therefore, if He is good at the time when you got married, He is still good at the time when you got divorced. You will have to understand that God is a restorer. If He is good at the time when you had the baby, He is still good when your child became wayward. He is a deliverer. If He is still good when you have health, He is still good through your sickness. He is a healer.

When you praise God through your pain, anything can happen. Paul and Silas were in jail, but they did not let their situation deter them from praising God. They began to praise God through their pain. When God saw their sacrifice of praise, He gave them their break-through. The scripture says, “ And at midnight Paul and Silas prayed, and sang praises unto God: and the prisoners heard them. And suddenly there was a great earthquake, so that the foundations of the prison were shaken: and immediately all the doors were opened, and every one’s bands were loosed” (Acts 16:25-26).

It doesn’t matter whether your day is going good or bad. It is the day that the Lord has made. You should still rejoice and be glad in it (Psalms 118:24).

God is the same whether you find yourself up on the mountain, or whether you find yourself in the valley. The same God who you praise when things go right on the mountain, is the same God you still praise when things go wrong in the valley. He will make things right when they go wrong. However, you still need to continue to praise Him through the pain, despite your situation. When God sees your sacrifice of praise, He will deliver your break-through.

Listen to this inspirational song: Lynda Randle – God on the Mountain

Has God shown you a vision or given you a prophecy? Are you still waiting for the vision to become a reality or the prophecy to be fulfilled? The wait can be very difficult, because you may be suffering from a threatening illness, and God has promised you healing, but while you are waiting, you are going through a lot of pain, discomfort, or even facing the uncertainty of a life or death battle. Additionally, you may be waiting for a deliverance from a broken marriage, or waiting for your forever partner, or waiting for a major deal to come through to give you that financial break-through that God has shown you. Further, you may be facing demonic oppressions, which have caused a lot of setbacks in your life. Moreover, you may have been under the devil’s stronghold for a long time, waiting for a break-through from whatever situations that are causing you to be oppressed. However, God’s words declare, “Is not this the fast that I have chosen? to loose the bands of wickedness, to undo the heavy burdens, and to let the oppressed go free, and that ye break every yoke? (Isaiah 58:6).” God can set the oppressed free. He is mighty and powerful.

Your vision or prophecy could be anything that you are waiting for, that God has already shown you that you will receive. However, remember as you become impatient waiting for your deliverance, remember the scripture, ”But they that wait upon the Lord shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings as eagles; they shall run, and not be weary; and they shall walk, and not faint (Isaiah 40:31).” Ask the Lord to teach you how to wait on Him, while He comes through for you. Do not let the devil fill your head with lies and discouraging words while you wait. Rebuke every negative words that come to your mind, and fill your mind with God’s words of faith, hope and peace.

Conversely, you will have to come to a place where you find peace in His promises. His promises are true, and His yes cannot be over-ruled by the devil’s no. God is not human where He can lie. Therefore, His promises are true. “Whereby are given unto us exceeding great and precious promises: that by these ye might be partakers of the divine nature, having escaped the corruption that is in the world through lust (2 Peter 1:4).” Continue to stand on His promises. He will never fail you.

When you trust in the Lord, you will find peace in His promises. However, if you don’t, you will be worried, confused, stressed-out, become more depressed, sick, or eventually lose your mind. “Thou wilt keep him in perfect peace, whose mind is stayed on thee: because he trusteth in thee (Isaiah 26:3).” Trusting in the Lord will allow you to be in peace, so that His promises will be fulfilled.

Listen to this “Standing on the Promises” song.

Prayer for the Day

Thank you, Lord, for being there for me and allowing me to cry out to you in my times of need.
It is amazing to me that the Lord of the Universe would take time to listen to me and to care about what I say.

It’s Only A Test!

Are you going through the roughest time in your life right now? If so, how are you coping? Are you about to give up? Are you thinking that God has forgotten your struggles? Are you thinking that you will never overcome these tribulations? Have you been spiritually attacked? Are you being deceived by the enemy? Have you lost something or someone precious? Are you dealing with a sickness that has no cure by the doctors? Are you waiting on God to connect you with your partner in marriage? Have you been trying to get pregnant, but has been unfruitful in your effort? Have you been financially depressed? Have you been attacked by the ones who you think should have your back?

God told me to tell you that it’s only a test! How can you be promoted from one grade to the next, without having to undergo any test? Take for example, in the natural world, where you have been in grade 6, and should move to grade 7. Would you just get to grade 7 without enduring a test? NO!

God is getting ready to promote you in your finances, your ministry, your career, your educational status, your singleness, your barrenness, your loveless life, your health, and all that’s on your wish list. But you have to pass your test. It’s only when you have completed this test, you will be rewarded. Bear in mind, that if you fail the test, you will have to retake it. You have got to press! If you do not press, you won’t see the glory of the Lord! The race is not to the swift, but to those who will endure to the end (Ecclesiastes 9:11).

The woman with the issue of blood pressed in to receive her healing. She had faith to continue to endure throughout all that she had been through. Without faith, it’s impossible to please God, and if you can’t please Him, He can’t reward you (Hebrews 11:6).

When God restores, He gives you the biggest, the best, and the greatest! So come on, it’s not time to throw in the towel. Wherever you are right now, it’s time to muster every ounce of strength in your body, so that you can make it to the finish line. It just take a little more of your effort, even though you think all your strength has been exhausted. His grace is sufficient, as His strength is made perfect in weakness ( 2 Corinthians 12:9).

When you think enough is just enough, you have one more test to overcome, in order for God to advance you to the next level. If you are getting overly exhausted, and you believe it’s just too difficult to get past this level, I would personally love to pray for you. Please email me at info@enoughtribulations.com, so I can personally minister and pray for you.

Grace and peace to you.

Minister Gertrude Ferguson

A mouse looked through the crack in the wall to see the farmer and his wife opened a package.

“What food might this contain?” The mouse wondered. He was devastated to discover it was a mousetrap. Retreating to the farmyard, the mouse proclaimed the warning. “There is a mousetrap in the house! There is a mousetrap in the house!”

The chicken clucked and scratched, raised her head and said, “Mr. Mouse, I can tell this is a grave concern to you, but it is of no consequence to me. I cannot be bothered by it.”  The mouse turned to the pig and told him, “There is a mousetrap in the house! There is a mousetrap in the house!” The pig sympathized, but said, “I am so very sorry, Mr. Mouse, but there is nothing I can do about it but pray. Be assured you are in my prayers.”

The mouse turned to the cow and said, “There is a mousetrap in the house! There is a mousetrap in the house!” The cow said, “Wow, Mr. Mouse. I’m sorry for you, but it’s no skin off my nose.”  So, the mouse returned to the house, head down and dejected, to face the farmer’s mousetrap alone.

That very night a sound was heard throughout the house, like the sound of a mousetrap catching its prey. The farmer’s wife rushed to see what was caught. In the darkness, she did not see it was a venomous snake whose tail the trap had caught. The snake bit the farmer’s wife. The farmer rushed her to the hospital, and she returned home with a fever. Everyone knows you treat a fever with fresh chicken soup, so the farmer took his hatchet to the farmyard for the soup’s main ingredient.

But his wife’s sickness continued, so friends and neighbors came to sit with her around the clock. To feed them, the farmer butchered the pig. The farmer’s wife did not get well; she died. So many people came for her funeral, and the farmer had the cow slaughtered to provide enough meat for all of them.

The mouse looked upon it all from his crack in the wall with great sadness.

So, the next time you hear someone is facing a problem and think it doesn’t concern you, remember when one of us is threatened, we are all at risk. We are all involved in this journey called life. We must keep an eye out for one another and make an extra effort to encourage one another.

Most importantly, today might be one person’s storm, but tomorrow might be yours. Therefore, do not ignore that person, as they go through their storm. In this world, no one is immune. We all must face tribulations at some point or another (John 16:33). However, when your storm begins, bear in mind, you will need some form of help and support as well.

 

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