THE POWER OUTAGE

9 o’clock the other night I’m watching TV and the lights go out. No electricity in the whole neighborhood. Thoughts fly through my mind in rapid succession like bullets from an automatic rifle: “I’ve got a generator. I need to take it outside. I have to get my flashlight. It’s dark. I won’t be able to see out there. Sh..t, I should have recharged the batteries the last time. Do I have any other flashlights? In my car. Phew!” I’m just about to get up out of my chair and all the lights and sounds come charging back to life.

A couple days later I thought about not having the batteries ready for my flashlight when we had the power outage. It reminded me of the Bible story about the ten virgins with the oil lamps. They took their lamps to meet the bridegroom and go to the wedding. But only five took extra oil for their lamps so they’d be prepared. The bridegroom was late so the five without extra oil were running out of light. They thought they could borrow some from the others but that wasn’t going to happen.

We learn from this passage that each of us is responsible to get his or her own oil. No one else is responsible to read the Bible for us and no one else can do our believing for us. The women who were prepared, went on to the party and the others missed out. (Matt 5:1-13). This parable is about being ready when Jesus comes back. Nobody knows when that will be, but there will be a day when Jesus returns and everything changes.

“The day of the Lord will come as a thief in the night; in the which the heavens shall pass away with a great noise, and the elements shall melt with fervent heat, the earth also and the works that are therein shall be burned up” (2 Pet 3:10). “For the Lord himself shall descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel, and with the trump of God” (1 Thess 4: 16).

Jesus said that when judgment day comes, every man will have to account for every idle word he speaks (Matt 12:36) and fire will try every work. Our works are to be built on the foundation of Jesus Christ. “If any man’s work abide which he hath built thereupon, he shall receive a reward. If any man’s work shall be burned, he shall suffer loss” (1 Cor 3:13-15). “Seeing then that all these things shall be dissolved, what manner of persons ought ye to be?” (2 Pet 3:11).

People want to feel that their lives are meaningful and that they are contributing good things into this world. Once Jesus comes back, we don’t get the chance to do it over again. We only have one life to live here on earth right now, no reincarnation. We need to make every day count.

We don’t want to miss a chance to say something kind, do something significant for someone else, give a smile, help someone, minister healing, cast out a devil spirit, etc. “We are all the children of light” (1 Thess 5:5) and we can “walk as children of light” (Eph 5:8). “Neither do men light a candle, and put it under a bushel” (Matt 5:15). Let your particular light shine.

The end of our world is imminent and according to the Bible, it could be any day. Let’s make a difference here while we can. If we think more often about Jesus’ return, we will live our lives more like the women who carried extra oil, rather than the ones whose light ran out.

Like it says in Romans 13:12, “The night is far spent, the day is at hand: let us therefore cast off the works of darkness, and let us put on the armour of light.”

If we live like today could be our last, it just could be our best.

After the lights came back on the other night, I recharged the batteries for my flashlight. Today I’m recharging my heart for the Lord Jesus Christ.

Love, Carolyn

FREE this coming Thursday thru Monday you can download my WINGS sample book: COMMITMENT, from Amazon. Great chapters include GOING THROUGH THE EYE OF THE NEEDLE, PREACH YOURSELF HAPPY, SEEING LIFE IN A NEW WAY and RECEIVING YOUR HARVEST.

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DEVIL GOT PUT DOWN WHEN CHRIST WENT UP

I heard a story where a brother and his sister were riding in the back seat of the family car when all of a sudden the little girl blurted out, “Shut up devil!” Mom turned around and asked, “Why did you say that?” The little girl answered, “Because the devil told me I should break John’s leg.”

We all need to do more of what that little girl did and tell the devil to shut up and go back down where he belongs.

When Jesus was tempted in the wilderness, Matthew tells us Jesus responded with: “Get thee hence, Satan: for it is written, Thou shalt worship the Lord thy God, and him only shalt thou serve” (Matt 4:10). Notice that Jesus didn’t pray about it. He didn’t ask God to get Satan away from him. He spoke directly to the spirit and “then the devil leaveth him” (vs.11). Throughout Jesus’ walk on the earth we see that He speaks directly to that which is destructive and tells it to stop or depart. We can do the same.

I looked up the Greek translation for “get thee hence” from Matthew 4:10. It is hupago which comes from ago, which is to go, and hupo which is under, beneath, below, to an inferior position. So hupago is to go below. Jesus commanded Satan to back down.

Before I came to this revelation of sending evil deeply under and beneath, I would cast out devil spirits, but I only cast them away, not under. Demanding that evil take itself below is a much stronger image and agrees with many other passages we find in the Bible. For example there is the record of when Jesus cast the devil spirits out of the man of the Gadarenes. The evil spirits went into the pigs. And then what did they do? They jumped from a higher position on the cliffs to the water below and drowned:

And all the devils besought him, saying, Send us into the swine, that we may enter into them. And forthwith Jesus gave them leave. And the unclean spirits went out, and entered into the swine: and the herd ran violently down a steep place into the sea, (they were about two thousand) and were choked in the sea. (Mark 5:12-13 AMP)

When Jesus allowed himself to be crucified, He allowed for every evil that possibly could be inflicted on a man or woman to be inflicted upon himself. That would include any sickness, disease, oppression, worry, guilt, lack, and anything you or I can possibly think of that is destructive to the body, soul, or spirit. Jesus took it all upon Himself. He also was buried with it. And all of that evil and sickness was taken to Hell with Him.

It took tremendous power for God to raise Jesus up out of that filth, every bit of slimy, clawing, insidious evil wanting to pull him back down, or hitch a ride up. The Devil thought he’d destroyed Jesus; he certainly would fight to keep him down there, but he couldn’t. When God raised Jesus, all evil was left behind, dropped away, and Jesus was raised as the victorious Christ.

Without oppression, there could be freedom. Without sickness and disease, there could be health. Without the wretchedness of poverty, there could be abundance and generous overflow. Without the claw of addiction there could be the joy of liberty. Without the strain of jealousy, there could be the comfort of love. Jesus took all evil to Hell, left it there and was raised all the way up to Heaven to enjoy the full, unimpaired blessing of God.

The rightful position of believers is above with Christ, and without any of things Jesus took with Him to the grave and to Hell.

Because of “his great love wherewith he loved us,” God “hath raised us up together, and made us sit together in heavenly places in Christ Jesus” (Eph 2:4 and 6), “far above all principality, and power, and might, and dominion, and every name that is named” (Eph 1: 21).

Romans 6:4 tells us “that like as Christ was raised up from the dead by the glory of the Father, even so we also should walk in newness of life.” Truthfully, any of the things that Jesus took to the grave and left deep in Hell, should not be in our lives. If they have deceitfully become a part of our lives, we have the perfect right to send them right back down to where they came from. We can walk in the new freedom we have.

God’s given us victory and authority in Christ. If devil spirits try to talk us into things that are not the best for us, we can say, like the little girl in the back seat, “Shut up devil!” Or we can say, like Jesus, “Go back below, where you belong! You don’t have any right to be here with me!”

Love, Carolyn

Look for the next free download on Thursday: Sample book E – Bible Studies – more exciting than you might think, it includes chapters such as “The Missing Manual,” “Why the Devil Has No Authority,” and “History told in the Heavenlies.” Also a good one on what we can gain from knowing about the O.T. festivals in the chapter on Father’s Day. Available from Amazon.