EASTER?

I know I’m in the minority thinking this way, and I can hear the “ughs” already, but I find it very offensive that my Lord’s death and resurrection is associated with an Easter bunny, jelly beans and chocolate, etc. I won’t go into the details regarding the origin of Easter, but I will say this… Easter 🐣 is a Roman Catholic holiday that the Protestant/Evangelical church has embraced. I remember a former Roman Catholic priest asking why all the Protestant Christian schools were closed on the so called Roman Catholic “holy week”. The former priest was making a protest that few have heard or seem to want to hear. Have we become so accustomed to the times in which we live and forgotten the majesty and holiness and fear of the Lord?…

Revelation 1

9 John, who also am your brother, and companion in tribulation, and in the kingdom and patience of Jesus Christ, was in the isle that is called Patmos, for the word of God, and for the testimony of Jesus Christ.

10 I was in the Spirit on the Lord’s day, and heard behind me a great voice, as of a trumpet,

11 Saying, I am Alpha and Omega, the first and the last: and, What thou seest, write in a book, and send it unto the seven churches which are in Asia; unto Ephesus, and unto Smyrna, and unto Pergamos, and unto Thyatira, and unto Sardis, and unto Philadelphia, and unto Laodicea.

12 And I turned to see the voice that spake with me. And being turned, I saw seven golden candlesticks;

13 And in the midst of the seven candlesticks one like unto the Son of man, clothed with a garment down to the foot, and girt about the paps with a golden girdle.

14 His head and his hairs were white like wool, as white as snow; and his eyes were as a flame of fire;

15 And his feet like unto fine brass, as if they burned in a furnace; and his voice as the sound of many waters.

16 And he had in his right hand seven stars: and out of his mouth went a sharp twoedged sword: and his countenance was as the sun shineth in his strength.

17 And when I saw him, I fell at his feet as dead. And he laid his right hand upon me, saying unto me, Fear not; I am the first and the last:

18 I am he that liveth, and was dead; and, behold, I am alive for evermore, Amen; and have the keys of hell and of death.

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Matthew 28:1  In the end of the sabbath, as it began to dawn toward the first day of the week, came Mary Magdalene and the other Mary to see the sepulchre.

Matthew 28:2  And, behold, there was a great earthquake: for the angel of the Lord descended from heaven, and came and rolled back the stone from the door, and sat upon it.

Matthew 28:3  His countenance was like lightning, and his raiment white as snow:

Matthew 28:4  And for fear of him the keepers did shake, and became as dead men.

Matthew 28:5  And the angel answered and said unto the women, Fear not ye: for I know that ye seek Jesus, which was crucified.

Matthew 28:6  He is not here: for he is risen, as he said. Come, see the place where the Lord lay.

Matthew 28:7  And go quickly, and tell his disciples that he is risen from the dead; and, behold, he goeth before you into Galilee; there shall ye see him: lo, I have told you.

Matthew 28:8  And they departed quickly from the sepulchre with fear and great joy; and did run to bring his disciples word.

Matthew 28:9  And as they went to tell his disciples, behold, Jesus met them, saying, All hail. And they came and held him by the feet, and worshipped him.

Matthew 28:10  Then said Jesus unto them, Be not afraid: go tell my brethren that they go into Galilee, and there shall they see me.

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Matthew 28:16  Then the eleven disciples went away into Galilee, into a mountain where Jesus had appointed them.

Matthew 28:17  And when they saw him, they worshipped him: but some doubted.

Matthew 28:18  And Jesus came and spake unto them, saying, All power is given unto me in heaven and in earth.

Matthew 28:19  Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost:

Matthew 28:20  Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you: and, lo, I am with you alway, even unto the end of the world. Amen.

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John 11:25  Jesus said unto her, I am the resurrection, and the life: he that believeth in me, though he were dead, yet shall he live:

John 11:26  And whosoever liveth and believeth in me shall never die. Believest thou this?

John 11:27  She saith unto him, Yea, Lord: I believe that thou art the Christ, the Son of God, which should come into the world.

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We who are born again and filled with the Holy Ghost can and do remember and proclaim the Lord’s death and resurrection daily. 🙌

COUNT YOUR BLESSINGS

There are times when we believers can tend to be focused on the disappointments of this life. I’ve done it, but then I think about all of the good things we have that we take for granted. The ordinary everyday things that we probably don’t think much about.

We have a roof over our heads. Many are homeless, living on the streets or in their cars.

We have running water in our homes. My mother didn’t have that when she was growing up.

We have a private bathroom. There are places in this world where people have to use community bathrooms all of the time!

We have an appetite to enjoy our food. Some can’t do that because of illness.

We can walk. I’ve been more appreciative of that since it’s become more difficult for me to walk because of a deformity in my right leg. I’m thankful that I can still walk at all!

We’re not on our way to the emergency room! I remember last summer when Billy was in the emergency room and admitted to the hospital! I often thank the Lord for the “peace of the moment” for we “… knowest not what a day may bring forth” (Proverbs 27:1) That’s especially true as we age.

We know the Lord. We have been born again! We’ve read the Scriptures. I sadly think of the many who have left this earth and have never opened a Bible, or read even one Scripture verse.

We can choose to focus on our disappointments, or we can choose to count our blessings. There can be hidden blessings even in our disappointments when we know the Lord.

Do you know the Lord? Have you been born again?

My Salvation Testimony

UNCLE JOE’S GRAVESITE SERVICE

It was in the 1990’s, I don’t remember exactly what year, that we went to visit my husband’s Uncle Joe in the hospital. He was in a coma, but we knew that sometimes people can hear what’s being said to them even though they’re in a coma. His aunt’s coat was in the room but she was nowhere to be found. We had a good hour alone with him to pray and share the Gospel, and we spoke to him as if he were awake.

A few days later we learned that his uncle had died, and that there would be a graveyard service on Long Island, with a Roman Catholic priest officiating. My husband prayed, unbeknownst to me… “Lord, I’m not in charge of this service, but if you want me to speak please let the Catholic priest get lost on the way to the cemetery.” I also prayed, unbeknownst to my husband, that if his uncle was saved, that a Catholic priest would not touch him, meaning he would have nothing more to do with anything regarding Uncle Joe.

The day of the service arrived, and everyone was waiting in their cars at the cemetery for the priest to arrive. We waited and waited. After awhile people got out of their cars and started walking towards the gravesite. Chairs were set up and there was a pulpit too. We heard his relatives saying among themselves that somebody should say something. Billy’s aunt asked if anyone wanted to share a few words. Billy remembered his prayer and slowly raised his hand to volunteer. He said “I’ll talk”. He said it felt as if a string was pulling his hand up as his heart began to pound. Him, speak in front of all these mostly Roman Catholic relatives, and his aunt, the Jewish widow! He walked to the pulpit and shared God’s Word with the people. Afterwards we gave out little Bible booklet tracts, all Scripture.

We were at our church later that night and didn’t get home until 11:30 pm. As we opened the front door we heard the phone ringing. It was Billy’s aunt calling, saying she had been trying to get us all afternoon. She wanted to thank him, and tell him that everyone was so happy that he volunteered to speak in the priest’s absence. She also told us that Billy’s uncle liked to listen to Christian radio. We had no idea! Are you wondering what happened to the priest, and why he didn’t he show up as planned? She told us that she contacted the priest and asked him what happened. He told her he went to the wrong cemetery!

HAVE YOU FELT LIKE GIVING UP LATELY?

It began with a book I read entitled “Have You Felt Like Giving Up Lately” that I got from our local public library. I don’t remember the exact details of why that title appealed to me at the time, but it did. The book mentioned another book by the same author, “The Cross and the Switchblade”. The library didn’t have it so I ordered it from Barnes and Noble. I read about lives being dramatically changed and about young people being set free from gangs and drug addiction, all by the power of the Holy Spirt. My first thought was I go into the Catholic Church depressed and I come out depressed. I thought nothing changes for me, but the people I read about experienced incredible changes in their lives. I wondered if the preacher mentioned in the book was still alive, I wanted to hear him preach! I knew nothing about truly Christian churches and preachers at the time, I only knew about the Roman Catholic Church. One day soon thereafter I turned on the radio to a Christian channel. I was not familiar with Christian radio but found the Christian channel quite “by accident”. As I listened to the radio I heard that the preacher I wanted to hear was starting a church in New York City! I wanted to go! By that time my husband had read “The Cross and the Switchblade” also and he was interested in going too, so off we went.

The church was in a theater, and as we walked in and looked around my husband’s first thought was where are all the statues? And when the preacher (not the preacher I wanted to hear, we heard him on another day) came out my husband thought… this guy has a suit on, where are the vestments! One thing that stands out was that it felt good to be there. Our first time in a church other than a Roman Catholic Church and it felt so good! We were in the “coming out of Rome” stage and didn’t know much but we knew this was something good that was happening to us. After the service they had teaching tapes available in the lobby and my husband really wanted to look at those tapes, but by that time I had developed the worst headache I had ever had, to the point that it gave me an upset stomach. Much to our mutual disappointment we had to leave and weren’t able to look at those tapes that day.

During this “coming out of the Roman Catholic Church” period we would go to Mass in the morning 😩 and go to our new found church at night. But that didn’t last too long. As we continued reading our Bibles we became more discerning, and before long we left Rome for good. 🙌 We started going to every service at our new church, Sunday, Tuesday and Friday.

The Sunday services were at 10 a.m. and 7 p.m. Later a 3 p.m. service was added. We were there all day Sunday, every Sunday. We would get to the city early and have breakfast with other believers before the morning service, and after the morning service we would have lunch. After lunch we would either go out and evangelize or hand out sandwiches to the homeless before returning to the Church for the evening service. The church was open all day, and you could go in and fellowship with other believers, read your Bible, or just sit down and rest. Free parking was provided enabling us to stay there all day. Parking is expensive in New York City so that was a real blessing.

After several years, for various reasons, our time there came to an end. When we attended other churches it was so different. It took a long time to adjust. It was very hard and very sad. Going from all day Sunday to a couple of hours on Sunday was hard.

I was prompted to write this post because last Sunday my husband and were reminiscing about those joyful days of newfound faith in Christ. Finding a solid church to attend these days is difficult. Reminiscing brought such joy to our hearts, but cannot compare with what the future holds for every born again child of God!

1 Corinthians 2:9 But as it is written, Eye hath not seen, nor ear heard, neither have entered into the heart of man, the things which God hath prepared for them that love him.

Psalm 107:8 Oh that men would praise the LORD for his goodness, and for his wonderful works to the children of men!

The preacher who wrote the two books mentioned in the post was David Wilkerson.

Pastor Dave founded Times Square Church in New York City in 1987. We began attending in 1988, and were both baptized there in May 1989, my husband giving public testimony that day of coming out of the Roman Catholic Church. 🙌

Read about salvation… HERE