Prayers That Availeth Much

I am so thankful that I was introduced to Prayers that Availeth Much.  Back in 1978, I worked part-time as a secretary for a home town insurance agency.  This was shortly before my husband went into the ministry.  One morning while I was at work, I received a telephone call from an older woman in our church. She simply said, “Linda, I have a gift for you, and I would like to drop it off around lunch time today.”  Naturally, I was flattered and couldn’t wait to see what the gift might be.  For some reason, I imagined jewelry, perfume, or perhaps a scarf, or even a nice sweater.  I kept my eyes on the clock all morning!

When she entered the office, she was holding a book in her hand.  As she approached my desk, she held out the book for me to take.  I suddenly realized the book… was the gift.  To be honest, I was actually a little disappointed.  Yet, I smiled and thanked her for the “gift.”  As I took the book from her hands, she explained to me that she felt impressed of God to give me the book after she had finished reading it.  I looked down at the title.  It read, “What Happens When Women Pray.”  Honestly, at the moment, it just didn’t seem that interesting to me.  I was twenty-two-years-old, and I knew how to pray; just talk to God!  So I smiled and politely thanked her again.

After she left, I glanced over a few pages then put the book inside of my purse.  That afternoon when I got home I tossed it in my grandmother’s cedar chest that was located in my bedroom.  The book rested there for one entire year.

In December 1978, my husband felt the call of God upon his life to enter into the ministry. So, he and I along with our three little girls, twins age 3 and our baby daughter age two, joined a new church just starting in our community.  From the time we married, four years earlier, we had been going to the church where he attended as a boy.  But, now my husband felt we should become involved in this particular church’s new work within our own community.

After visiting the new church for several Sundays, we both felt lead of the Lord to join the church and to become involved in its growing ministries. I was immediately asked to be the church’s organist and my husband was asked to assist with the youth group and the youth choir.  We were very happy and enthused with our new lives and roles in the church.

Three months after we joined the church, I opened my grandmother’s cedar chest to get out a blanket.  As I did, I saw the book just lying there.  I sat down on the floor and started reading the book….Suddenly, I couldn’t put it down.  The words were literally jumping off the page at me!  I read it all afternoon.  Quickly, I cooked supper, cleaned the kitchen, and got the girls ready for bed.  Then, I went back to the book and continued to read it until I finished all 144 pages that night.  It was a life changing experience for me.

The book, authored by Evelyn Christenson, teaches women how to pray effective, fervent prayers according to the Book of James. The next Sunday I took the book to my pastor. He asked if he could borrow it for his wife to read.  She read it and was inspired to teach the book to the ladies of the church.  I was thrilled when she asked me to be her assistant.  Over the next year, the ladies of our church met weekly and learned how to pray specific, effectual prayers unto the Lord.  We were all seeing amazing results to our prayers.  It was a most inspiring time in the lives of the young wives and mothers, including me, in our church.

That same year, during our fall revival, I was seated on the second pew on the right side of the church as was accustomed since I was the organist.  During the preaching of the message, the evangelist walked out from behind the pulpit and into the aisle.  Then, he walked right to the pew where I was sitting with my husband and three little girls.  Without hesitation, the evangelist pointed his finger right at me and said, “Sister, your greatest ministry will be those three little girls sitting beside you.” I felt my heart leap with joy, because I had already been praying specific prayers for my daughters asking God to save their souls, to protect them in life, and to bring future husbands into their lives who would either preach or teach the Gospel, be a deacon or elder in the church, or be a faithful church worker for the Lord.  I even sent up prayers for the future lives of my not-yet-born grandchildren. That was thirty-three years ago.

Tonight, my husband and I visited my son-in-law’s church where he is the pastor.  He was making a video presentation to his congregation about his recent missionary trip to Vietnam and Cambodia.  As I was watching the video and acutely listening to the enthusiastic words of my son-in-law, I suddenly heard a voice within my spirit saying, “Your prayers are now touching the lives of those living in Vietnam and Cambodia.”  I was suddenly reminded that those specific closet-prayers I had prayed back in the 70’s and 80’s were now reaching to the other side of the world through my daughter and her husband’s love for missions!  Prayers that availeth much! 

God not only brought me one son-in-law who is a pastor, but he brought two more outstanding Christian son-in-laws, as well.  My oldest daughter’s husband is a lay preacher.  She and her husband are directors of AWANA’s at their church and travel around to other churches conducting teaching seminars.  My second daughter and her husband are bringing up their three daughters faithfully in church and use their business to bless people all over the country.   The far-reaching blessings of God are beyond measurability.

I can truly testify that I am blessed beyond measure, and I feel I owe a great deal of appreciation for those blessings to Mrs. Avery, the sweet and precious lady who felt lead of the Lord to give this young wife and mother a book on how to pray fervent, effectual prayers; “What Happens When Women Pray.” 

Mrs. Avery is in Heaven now, but her obedience unto the Lord lives on in the hearts and lives of my children and grandchildren, as well as in the lives of the other ladies who were apart of that very special prayer group.  Even today, when we see one another we still shake our heads in amazement and give Thanks and Praise unto God for that very special time in our lives when we all learned how to pray effectual prayers.  And, I want to also give special thanks to its author, Evelyn Christenson, for taking the time to teach women all over the world that God does hear and answer prayers.

I want to thank my Heavenly Father for the amazing answers he has given to my specific prayers concerning my children and grandchildren over the last three decades.  There have been plenty of storms along the way; some brought us to our knees, but God has always been Faithful to never leave nor forsake us.  He is an awesome, amazing God.  It’s not by any means what I have done; but it is God’s faithfulness to his children and to the promises found within His written Word.

I hope today’s blog might inspire and encourage you to remain steadfast in your prayers for your family and loved ones.  You will be amazed at how far-reaching your prayers can avail.  Amen.

“The effectual fervent prayer of a righteous man availeth much.”  (James 5:16 KJV.)

Remember, God Loves You!

Lin T. Rollins, Author

Advertisements

Sea of Forgetfulness

Last night as I was sitting outside looking up at the stars, I suddenly felt as if the vast sky above me was the Sea of Forgetfulness.  Imagine there being a sea, a very large sea, that one could visit, but could never go into.  At the edge of this sea would be a big sign that read, “No wading;” “No swimming;” “No boating;” “No skiing;” and most importantly, “No fishing.”  One could only look out over the calm, peaceful sea, but never, never immerse into its waters.

You might ask, “Why can people only look at the Sea but not wade into its waters?”  Because this particular Sea is where God places all of our confessed sins, iniquities, and transgressions.  And, once God has placed them into the Sea, He remembers them no more, and he wants us to remember them no more, as well.

“He (God) will turn again, he will have compassion upon us; he will subdue our iniquities; and thou will cast all their sins into the depths of the sea.” (Micah 7:19)

The prophet Micah knew a whole lot about sin.  He lived and prophesied during one of Israel’s darkest times.  The kingdom was divided into the Northern and Southern sections with Samaria as the capital of the northern kingdom and Judah as the capital of the southern kingdom.  Because of the sin of idolatry and Baal worship, God allowed the powerful forces of the Assyrian armies to march in and destroy much of the northern kingdom.  Micah knew that if Judah, the southern kingdom under the wicked rule of King Ahaz, did not repent of her sins that she, too, would see the fierce wrath of God brought upon her land, as well. For God is no respecter of persons; He is a just God.  So, Micah preached repentance.

However, God does not punish His people just for the sake of punishing them.  He brings forth punishment as a way of correction and redirection back to the ways of God; back to obedience.  I remember as a child that my earthy father would tell me after he had spanked me for some wrong I had committed, that the only reason he had spanked me was because he loved me and wanted me to grow up knowing how to make the right choices in life.  In other words, his way of correcting me was to enforce a sense of right and wrong into my life.  Oh, how we need more dads and mothers today who are not afraid to instill the sense of right and wrong into the hearts and lives of their children!  And, sometimes the fastest way to a child’s heart is through their little behind! (I’m not referring to beating a child; I’m talking about a good old-fashioned spanking on the backside of the britches!)

The prophet Micah also encouraged the people of Judah that God is a merciful God who would forgive their iniquities and remember them no more; if only they would repent and turn away from their sins.  In a way to better demonstrate God’s mercy and forgiveness, Micah writes, “He (God) will turn again, he will have compassion upon us; he will subdue our iniquities; and thou will cast all their sins into the depths of the sea.” (Micah 7:19)  Thus, theologians from this passage of Scripture have coined the term, “Sea of Forgetfulness.”

I don’t know about you, but there are times in my life when I need to be reminded of God’s eternal assurance to forgive and to forget all of my wrongs, sins, and iniquities when I confess and repent.  As I was sitting out under the stars last night, I imagined standing alongside of this great and merciful sea and as the Blood of Christ Jesus covered each of my confessed sins, God would then take the covered sins and cast them into the Sea never more to be remembered.  I could just hear the “ger-bunk” of each sin hitting the waters drifting downward; farther and farther out of sight and out of reach.  Amen.

Thank goodness, no one, not even Satan, can enter into this particular sea to dig up or drag up my confessed sins or your confessed sins.  They are cast into the sweet waters of Grace and Forgiveness never more to be remembered!

Who would want to swim in a Sea of Sin?  Or, go fishing in a Sea of Sin?  That’s a good question.  I actually believe there are people out there living their lives in such a way that it’s as if they are engulfed by a sea filled with sins!  God have mercy.  Thanks be unto Jesus, I don’t have to be one of those individuals struggling to survive in a sea filled with iniquities and sins.  I live on the peaceful shores of Grace and Mercy!

Now, here is one more thing that the Bible says about the sea.  It is found in the Book of Revelation, chapter 21, verse 1,  “And I, (John the Revelator) saw a new heaven and a new earth: for the first heaven and the first earth were passed away; and there was no more sea.”  Did you see that?? No more sea!  There won’t be any need for the sea in our renewed earth for the “curse of sin” will be gone!  And, the sea that once held our sin is also past and gone, as well!  Since the sea will be forever gone…this means that our sins will be forever gone!  Now, that’s something to shout about this morning!  Hallelujah!

So, if you are battling Satan’s attacks on your mind regarding past confessed sins and wrongs…take in a deep breath and Praise God for Micah 7:19; “thou wilt cast all their sins into the depths of the sea.”  The Sea of Forgetfulness.  And, strongly and confidently remind Satan that no one can “wade;” “swim,” “ski,” “boat;” or “fish” in the graceful waters of God’s mercies.

Today, I am so thankful and filled with joy and happiness for a loving, merciful, and kind God who is more willing to forgive and to forget my sins and wrong-doings than I am to confess them.

“What a fellowship; what a joy divine; Leaning on the everlasting arms.  What a blessedness, what a peace is mine, Leaning on the Everlasting arms.”  (Red Back Hymnal, copywright 1951, page 359).

Remember, God Loves You!

Lin T. Rollins, Author

Be Ye Kind?

Maybe you are fortunate enough to have never let anything like this happen to you; but unfortunately I have.  Have you ever engaged in a conversation, one that you perhaps initiated, with another person that by the time you ended the conversation you felt overly insecure and downtrodden; as if every good or positive accomplishment you had ever managed to achieve in this life should be tossed into the depths of the ocean or perhaps buried under a tantum truck load of cement??  Sadly; I have.

Boy…Oh, Boy…can some people make you feel inferior, unintelligent, pesky, unworthy, disrespected, and definitely undeserving of their time or attention.  Sad, but it does happen.  And, when it does happen, you want to look at these people and say, “Look, I perhaps don’t meet your level or heights of intelligence or professional experiences (even though you have a ton of your own personal and professional experiences to build upon; yet none as great or valued as theirs!), but do you mind not trying so hard to make me feel inferior, intrusive, unworthy, and brainless ?”  I’m not so sure that these type of people even know how they affect others around them.  But, if they do; Lord have mercy!  They tend to live in a world of their own…Sad.

I know it is taught that no one can make you feel a certain way about yourself unless you allow them to do so.  So, I have been taking lots of deep breaths this evening and trying to remind myself that not everyone behaves in the same way or manner.  There’s plenty of good-hearted and loving people in the world, too.

However, on the flip side, I had the blessed opportunity today to be kind to someone.   This morning I received an unexpected telephone call from a former peer whom I taught with a few years ago.  She is moving back to Georgia and asked me to fill out a letter of recommendation for her since I was at one time her team leader.  I gave her the directions to my home, since she had never been to my house, and said that I would be more than happy to see her and to fill out the form.

After the young lady arrived at my home, we exchanged greetings and I escorted her into the living room.  My husband and I sat down and asked her how she enjoyed living in another state.  In other words, demonstrating a little bit of kindness and hospitality to a fellow human being; not too hard to do.

I enjoyed making positive comments on the recommendation form and sincerely hope that my recommendations will help her to obtain the position she is applying.  I felt honored by being asked to assist.  I don’t know why things like helping others brings a sense of joy to my heart and a feeling of delight to my Spirit; but it does!  She was grateful and appreciative for my time, and I didn’t mind helping one bit.

But, as I said earlier, that’s not always the case with all people.  Some people take their positions and opportunities in life to make others feel “weak,” “needy,” and “less” valuable in society.  Sad.

So, lesson learned….Not everyone on planet earth woke up this morning to be ye kind one to another.  And, face it; I’m not always filled with a bowl full of generosity and kindness dripping from my lips myself. We all have our days, times, and moments.  Maybe, the other person I spoke with today wasn’t having a good day; who knows.

But, here’s some good advise….If there is someone in your life that promotes or stirs downward, negative feelings about yourself nearly every time you see them or talk with them…perhaps it’s a huge sign to stay away from that person and not engage in either professional conversation or friendly chit-chat….After all, you won’t feel too friendly and high-spirited when you finish or walk away!

But, I also had good things happen to me today, as well.  Yea!  Two individuals sent very kind and supportive messages to me regarding my blog site.  And, I saw some of my old peers today that appeared just as excited to see me as I was to see them.  So, not all is lost.  Lesson…Concentrate on the good and let go of the negative!

Perhaps, we all need to be reminded to pause for a moment before we respond to others.  It is possible that they might be feeling a little vulnerable, overwhelmed, and uncertain about things going in their life and might simply need a little friendly assurance, kind words, and support from us.  I simply don’t want to be the person who feeds them to the lions and walks away totally blinded to the negative effect I possibly had on their life at that moment!

But, thanks be unto God for those individuals who are kind and try to be People-Pepper-Uppers; individuals whose smile and tone of voice can make you feel on top of the world; if only for a little bit.  We all need a little more of those individuals in our lives from time to time!  Those who actually practice, “Be Ye Kind One to Another.”  Amen.

So, looking all the way back to my first grade year in school, I remember a sign hanging on the bulletin board that read, “The Golden Rule….Do unto others as you would have others do unto you.”  And, underneath it was written the words, “Be Kind One to Another.”  Nice words to live by.

Now, for closure…I need to let this go…put it behind me…and move on. After all, “Tomorrow is another day!” (I love the movie, Gone With the Wind!)

Prayer:  “Thank you God for the open doors in my life, as well as the closed doors in my life.  Help me to walk by faith through the doors that you have opened and to shun away from those doors that you have seen fit to close; for you know what’s best for me.  Amen.”

Remember God Loves You!

Lin T. Rollins, Author

Faith…

Let’s face it…Life is filled with mysteries.  Planet Earth is filled with mysteries.  The oceans are filled with mysteries.  The universe is filled with mysteries.  The solar system is filled with mysteries.  Mystery surrounds us from all corners of existence.

To help us understand the heights, depths, and vast domains of life’s many mysteries,  mankind has looked to philosophies, myths, science, and religions for answers.  But, actually there is only one true and factual answer…Faith.

It is amazing to me that the Bible gives a specific and detailed definition to the word Faith.  God knew from the beginning of creation that man would want to search out all the mysteries and meanings found in life.  But, as mere humans, mortal beings, our minds cannot comprehend such vast intelligences possessed by God alone.  Therefore, to help our lesser intelligent minds, God created Faith.

What is Faith?  According to the Scriptures, “Faith is the substance of things hoped for and the evidence of things not YET seen.” (Hebrews 11:1 KJV).

Did you see that?  Did you see the tiny word with a powerful punch…YET!  God is assuring us that by faith, through faith, a thriving faith, and possessing faith that all the mysteries of the universe and life will one day be manifested and made known unto us, “the EVIDENCE of things not YET SEEN!”  Wow! One day, you and I will see and fully understand and comprehend the overwhelming, full realm of all mysteries currently surrounding mankind.

One day, I will know for certain why things happen the way that they do in this life.  One day, I will know the vast territories of the solar system and all that it contains.  One day, I will see the Word of God face to face….”In the beginning was the Word and the Word was God and the Word was with God.” (John 1 KJV)  “And, the Word became flesh and dwelt among us.” (John 1:14) God provided us the answer to this mystery….Jesus Christ is God who was manifested in the flesh for you and me!   And, one day, we will see Him face to face.  Amen!

Oh, the many complexed mysteries of life that challenge our hearts, souls, and minds.  YET….(such a powerful little word!)….By Faith I shall one day know the very substance of all these mysteries surrounding the existence of all mankind.  Me; a retired school teacher, a simple woman born in rural Rome, Georgia, reared in the small town of Powder Springs, married for thirty-seven years, and the mother to three daughters and grandmother to nine will walk the galaxy hand in hand with its Creator revealing every thought and question asked by man since the beginning.  Amazing; how awesome to know!

Today, I encourage you to indulge yourself in the sweet joys of Faith…knowing that one day all of our questions and lack of understandings will be resolved and dissolved. There’s a brighter day ahead for all those who have put their Faith in Christ Jesus; the Son of the living God.  Amen.

“Farther along we’ll know all about it.  Farther along we’ll understand why.  Cheer up my brother, live in the sunshine…we’ll understand it all by and by.”  (Hymn…Farther Along)

Remember, God Loves You!

Lin T. Rollins, Author

A Little Diet Will Do!

I’m switching things up a little bit this morning and writing more
about the physical nature of man. Still, I am praying that as I share my
family’s current dieting adventure that it will bring a smile to your face as
perhaps you can relate to our newfound plight as well.  (Laughter is medicine for the soul!)

If any of you read my Facebook site, you know that I have been
supporting my husband (age 60) this past month with his new diet and exercise
program to lose about twenty pounds and help to lower his cholesterol and triglycerides.
Buying groceries is now taking forever as I walk up and down aisles reading and
comparing labels; which products have the least calories, saturated fats, and
sodium. The final cost of groceries has also increased since everything that is
labeled “fat-free,” “reduced fat,” or “lower fat”
is priced higher than the good old fat-filled stuff!

Then, there are the added fruits and fresh vegetables to the menu.
Mind you, we’ve always eaten fruits and vegetables, but now they seem to be the
more focused food group; so naturally they are costing more. A mere five pounds
of Granny Smith apples are nearly $4.00. Good grief, what I would give for the
old apple tree in my neighbor’s back yard when I was a kid growing up! I’d make
myself a fortune!

My mid-morning snack of PopTarts has been replaced with Granola
Bars. Bacon (yum!) has been replaced with a daily portion of oatmeal and hot
dogs are now turkey dogs (which actually taste pretty good!).  Ice cream has
been replaced with fruity yogurt; but there are some pretty good yogurt out
there, and loaf bread has been replaced with tortillas; thus, making sandwiches
turn into wraps (also, pretty tasty).  Not all bad.

Honestly, I have to ask myself, how on earth did my grandparents
live to be in their 80’s and 90’s eating all of that fried chicken, fried pork
chops, fried country steak with mounds of gravy, deep-fried fish with lots of
hush puppies, deep-fried okra, deep-fried squash, deep-fried potatoes (yum-yum)??….STOP!!
I’m starting to get really hungry here!  I mean, I am from the south, you know!

Last night, my husband told me he’d eat a bucket of chicken as big
as he was! So would I!! And, Ladies, I have been so, so good….the only
chocolate I have eaten in a month are the tiny bits found in my Granola bars!!!
This is insane….I want a BIG slice of chocolate cake covered in chocolate icing with
chocolate sprinkles and chocolate syrup on top!!! CHOCOLATE….Lots and Lots of
Chocolate!!!

As I mentioned earlier, I don’t think our grandparents (or even
parents) went around starving themselves, eating healthy snacks every two to three
hours, drinking bottled water (but, Gosh! We have to today!),  comparing packaging labels (especially since they didn’t have packaging labels on homemade jams and jellies!), or eating everything grilled and broiled…Since all they had were deep frying pans in
the first place!  Oh, the joys of southern living….

But, there is one thing my grandmother did instill in her children
(and, she lived to be 98 years old). She (truthfully!) ate an apple every day.
She read from the Word of God every day. She never ate white bread only
whole-wheat and she believed till the end that liver and onions would cure any
condition you could ever have! (I love you Grandmother, now resting in Heaven,
but I never did buy into your liver philosophy!)

Nevertheless, there’s an old adage that says, “What goes around comes around.” The Bible even teaches, “There’s nothing new under the sun.” So, I wonder if down the road nutritionists and scientists will one day say, “Trans fats can be good for you.” Or, “Fried foods and chocolate are good for brain power.” LOL!   Who knows!

So, with just about everything else in life….I feel that moderation is the key to a more complete and healthier life style. Not obsessing….just enjoying a life of sound moderation.  “Rejoice in the Lord always; and again I say, Rejoice. Let your moderation be known unto all men.” (Philippians 4:4-5 KJV)  In other words, walking and living an even keel life in Christ Jesus.

So, in closing, what has been the result of our new, healthier life style? My husband has already loss ten pounds. Yea! Congratulations!!  Me, I loss one pound but regained 1/2 pound of that back!!

But, to help demonstrate my love and concern for my husband and his health, I will continue steadfastly and focused on our new diet and exercise program….After all, it’s what the doctor ordered! (For him!!) Now, where did I hide that Hershey’s bar??!!

Smile…

Remember, God loves you!!

Lin T. Rollins, Author

I’m a Winner Either Way

From all appearances in life, we are not short on finding discouragement and despair within our society; if not the entire world.  Pressures, heartaches, financial crisis, sicknesses and diseases, hunger in three-fourths of the world, and just a general sense of unrest and instability surround us all.  It almost makes it hard to breathe at times; so we take long, deep sighs and wonder what is going to happen next.

I feel that we have become a generation that “nothing” seems to surprise us anymore. Things that were once considered tabooed and only talked about within the darkened secrets of closed closet doors are now celebrated from the roof tops as if those of us who still possess morals and have problems with open practices of sin are the ones at fault!  So, we have become silent on issues out of fear of not being “with it,” or that we might be considered old-fashioned, narrowed minded, uninformed, unintelligent, uneducated, and backwards.  Gee!  We seem to be “labeled” more than the free-spirit, partying, anything goes world that we currently lived!

But, God has not changed his standards one tiny bit….He is the same yesterday, today, and forever more…Sin is still sin….and God is still a Holy and Righteous God; one to be reverenced and respected.  Two very important words that our society has nearly forgotten their meanings or how to put them into practice.

What we need are some strong victories on our side. A few good battles won here and there to help spear us on towards the finish line. But, to be able to identify the true Biblical definition of what “victory” actually means, it would take a huge paradigm change on the part of most believers.

For instance, let’s look at Daniel found in the Old Testament. Even though he was tossed inside of the lion’s den, by the king’s men, hoping to be eaten alive, he didn’t feel defeated or that he had lost the battle.  As I have heard some preachers say, “He just cuddled up beside one of those lions and had a good night’s sleep.”  Another example is Paul and Silas who sang praises at mid-night believing they would be put to death at morning’s dawn.  Instead, they were delivered through the power of God.  Also, there are the three Hebrew children who were thrown into the fiery furnace for not bowing down to the king of Babylon only to walk out alive with no smoke smell of any sort on their clothes!  Plus, according to the Bible, Jesus got right in the flames with them and walked around until they were released!  (He’s walking around with us, too!)  Three mighty stories of Biblical victories arising from the ashes of defeating circumstances.  It can happen today; as well.

I am nearly certain that each of these men could have felt as if it was the end of life as they had known it and that their lives were now destined to defeat.  Yet; what made the difference?  I feel that we, as believers,  truly know the answer to that question…. It was an unwavering faith in God that no matter the circumstances or the outcome they were still victorious and on the winning side.

Back in October, 2005, I was rushed to Atlanta’s Emory University Hospital with a pulsating brain aneurysm.  It was located deep inside of the brain and doctors were concerned if they would be able to repair the artery without serious complications.  If it ruptured it could mean death and if it bled into the brain it would affect both my speech and memory.  I was given two choices.  One, to have an extremely evasive brain surgery to permanently clip the aneurysm or a newer procedure that would allow doctors to fill the berry-shaped aneurysm with platinum coiling; less evasive, nevertheless risky just the same.  At the same time, our family was also going through a mountainous spiritual battle.  Not knowing how the situation would turn out, I looked at my sweet husband the night before the procedure and told him, “Hon, don’t worry. No matter what happens I’m a winner either way.”  A few years later, I heard a Southern Gospel group sing a song titled, “I’m a Winner Either Way, If I Go or If I Stay.” Talking about being able to relate! This old girl could surely relate to that song!

I feel that we base the meaning of victory too much on the world’s perception and the world’s standards.  For example; a man pastors a small church pretty much his entire life never leading a congregation of thousands; much less hundreds.  Some might shake their head and feel sorry for the poor old chap.  But, what if those were some of the happiest days in the lives of both he and his family?  Would you rather be miserable sitting in a huge crowd or happy serving God through a small group of people?

Because of man’s emphasis and misconception about what, “Victory- in-the-Lord,” actually means, many times pastors leave smaller congregations and people give up their service unto the Lord because of discouragement, lack of support from their friends and family members, and an overall sense of failure.  Ask yourself…Who is the loser in the long run?  I feel it might be everyone involved.  The prophet Elijah sit by the dried up river, yet God used the circumstances as a venue to demonstrate His powerful resources of provisions for mankind.  Today, are you facing some dried-up rivers right now in your own life?  I know I am.  God have mercy on our unbelief and help us all to have more faith in You.   

Both our churches and our homes need to stop running around and acting as if our lives are judged like the Olympics based upon performance within our own self-power,  self-strength, self-discipline, and self-determination.  Whatever happened to just letting go and letting God be God?  That’s nearly an unheard of concept in our day and time.  After all we have all bought into the concept that only the fittest survive.   This is simply not true and not the case in the life of a believer.  As believers, we survive and thrive through God’s daily provisional measurements of Grace and Mercy…By allowing God to be God of our life….After all…That’s just who He is…God, the Creator of Life.  And this morning, I have victorious news.  If we are covered under the Blood…Then Praise be unto God…We are true, eternal winners no matter what the world may say!! Let’s hear an Amen!!

I recall as a young wife and mother sitting in a meeting one night and listening to an evangelist say, “Many of you sitting here tonight probably think that when we all get to heaven there is going to be a big celebration over all the well-known and successful ministers and evangelists. But, I’m here to tell you that the faithful grandmother who picks up the Word of God each day and prays for that boy or for that girl and for her family will out weigh them all!! Her price is far above all the rubies of the world!”

That stuck with me. I have always wanted to be that faithful wife, mom, and grandmother who stands the test of time, toting my little Bible to church, and bending my knees in prayer over the lives of my children and my children’s children; as far as my prayers can reach down through the generations of time.

When we look at life from a Biblical perspective, then ask yourself this question, “Why are we so discouraged and filled with despair?” Why do we run to the world for their misconceived ideas and support?  Today, is just another God-given opportunity to pray for the loss, the back-slidden, and the downtrodden. Another day to Praise God from whom all blessings flow. Another day to lift up our hearts, spirits, and lives unto Him…Oh, the joy and power of sweet prayer.  Sweet, Sweet Hour of Prayer.

Afterall, we won’t really see the final results of our prayers until we reach Heaven; that glorious city of God.  Until then, my heart will go on singing for wherever there is prayer; there is hope. And, wherever there is hope; there is promise, and wherever there is promise; there is Faith; and wherever there is faith…There is God…And, wherever there is God; there is Victory!

Today, I encourage you to not be discouraged or dismayed…spend a little time with Jesus knowing that even though we might be standing alone in the lion’s den, being thrown into the fiery burning furnace, or cast into the cold prison cells of life….Our Heavenly Father has already won the battle; and so shall we… whether on this side of eternity or on the other side of life ever-lasting…I’m a Winner Either Way….”For the battle’s not mine; I give it to you…Lord, it’s thine!”

Today, I am on the winning side. And, you are, too; if you know Jesus as your personal Lord and Savior.  Through the Blood of Christ Jesus, I am on the Winning Side…I’m a Winner Either Way…Are you?

Remember, God Loves You,

Lin T. Rollins, Author

What Is Good? Who Is Good?

Some of the words that define the term, “good,” are high-quality, superior, excellent, satisfying, fitting and suitable, kind and generous, skilled, and virtuous.  We often look for “good” within our lives.  Possibly, a good meal, a good grade, a good place to sleep, a good teacher, a good job, a good book, a good and virtuous person, or a good friend.  We like being surrounded by “good.”

But, let’s face it.  Every meal we eat may be tasty, but it is not always as “good” as we would like.  Not everyone gets a good grade on an assignment or test.  How many times have you not had a good night’s sleep due to the environment?  I would love to say that “all” teachers are good; but that’s simply not the case.  Some people have good jobs with good pay and good bosses, but some have right the opposite.  Some books you pick up to read are not good and you put them down as quickly as you picked them up!  It’s so nice to meet a good and virtuous person, but unfortunately not everyone we meet is kind, good, or virtuous.  So, we look for “good” within our lives.

The Bible even teaches us, “There is none good; no not one.  All, like sheep, have gone astray.”  So, in one way or the other none of us are always 100%, 100% of the time Good.

But, I have Good News…God is always 100%, 100% of the times GOOD! God is Superior to all we know and could ever know.  God is Excellent in all of his ways.  God is virtuous, kind, and satisfying to our souls, minds, and hearts.  He is skilled in all of his accomplishments and the works of His hands always surpasses high-quality.  The Book that he authored is often times called, “The Good Book.” You won’t ever be dissatisfied when reading his Words!

As a child, you were probably taught this simple prayer:

God is Great; God is Good. Let us thank him for our food. By His Hands, we are fed; Thank you Lord for our daily bread. Amen.

So, if you are looking for “good” in your life; I suggest looking unto God, the author and finisher of our faith and lives.

Remember…God is so Good…God is so Good…God is so Good…He’s so Good to me!   

I hope you have a blessed and Good Day in the Lord.

Remember, God Loves You!

Lin T. Rollins, Author