Praise the Lord, saints of God!
I want you to know today that God cares about you so much. He desires that you be in health even as your soul prospers. He desires that you be strengthened and encouraged. He wants you to walk in total victory over the enemy. That whatever he may throw your way you will be able to overcome. Because God has given you the power to do so. He taught you how. We just got to remember that and do what we were taught to do.
I start off there because God just dropped that in my spirit as I began to write what He had given me over the last few days. God is real. And He just wants to love on us and let us know just how real He is and just how much He cares about our walk with Him.
Many of you know that my daughter Jasmine recently graduated from Pitt and has since been accepted into Harvard Law School and God blessed my husband and I to be able to purchase a brand new Mini-Cooper for her, to celebrate her and let her know just how godly proud we are of her accomplishments. It was something that she desired since she was a freshman in high school and the joy on her face when she received it was unspeakable! She could not be thankful enough and it was all over her. And as I saw that, God said to me, “Imagine how I feel when I have granted you the desire of your heart, and you express your gratitude.” And all I could say was, “Wow!” Just to glimpse of the Father’s love for me, what an awesome thing! But in the same instant realize the magnitude of the hurt He feels when He gives us a good thing and we’re ungrateful, or we act like it’s nothing, or we were supposed to have it, or even squander it.
Anyway, I mention all this, one because I just have to testify of the Lord’s goodness! Because God is good and He is worthy of all praise and honor and glory for the great things He does for the children of men! And two, to bring you to my point of writing in the first place.
I had the privilege of riding with Jas in her mini back to Pittsburgh as she sets herself to enjoy some of her summer with her friends, and for anybody that knows her, knows that she likes to listen to old music, I mean some from the 60s, 70s and 80s. Her favorite being Michael Jackson, of course. Well, she shared the honor of allowing me to listen to Going Back To Indiana and Rockin’ Robin to name a few and I did without saying much, as I realized that I was in her space and I actually enjoyed listening. But then after awhile (bless the Lord!) she played my kind of music… gospel! And my soul was blessed for the remainder of the 5 ½ hour ride.
But anyway, a particular song came on, “Oh Happy Day,” a familiar song, heard many many times before. But this version was from the movie, Sister Act II. And I really got the chance to actually listen to it. Sometimes we can hear things without listening. Just like see things without watching. But it is something about being still, with nothing else to do to distract you, but to listen. Hear what I am saying. The Scripture says, “Be still and know that I am God.” The Holy Ghost had me just where I needed to be. It had been some kind of couple of weeks for me, but here I was. Still. (Oh, the Father’s love for me). Ready to listen. Ready to hear. Hallelujah! And God began to speak to me through that song, and as I was listening to the words, the Holy Spirit began to minister.
The song was playing and as I first began to hear the words, “Oh Happy Day, Oh Happy Day… when Jesus washed. When He washed. When Jesus washed. He washed my sins away,” almost immediately it grabbed my attention. Jesus WASHED my sins away! Thank You Lord! But it didn’t stop there.
Then the next verse said, “He taught me how, to watch, fight and pray! Oh Happy Day!” “Yes,” I said, “Jesus taught me how to WATCH, FIGHT AND PRAY! “ Some versions say, walk right and pray, some say, wash, fight and pray. But whatever, the key is HE TAUGHT HOW TO DO IT. How to watch. “Be not ignorant of Satan’s devices “(2 Corinthians 2:11) “Be on your guard; stand firm in the faith; be men of courage; be strong “(1 Corinthians 16:12-13).
He taught us how to fight. Ephesians 6:11 “Put on the whole armour of God, that ye may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil.” He taught us how to pray, “Pray without ceasing.” “When you stand praying, forgive…” “Our Father which art in heaven.” Hallelujah! He taught us how! Thank You Jesus! But it didn’t stop there….
And then the song went on, and this is what really caught me…. He taught me, “And to live REJOICING… every day! “ Then I got the revelation!!! Praise the Lord! Jesus not only saved us and washed us and taught us how to watch, fight and pray. But He taught us how to LIVE….. REJOICING! How to live in victory! How to live in joy! In peace. How to love LIFE! Live rejoicing. The Scripture says, “Rejoice in the Lord, always, and again, I say, rejoice!” There’s a reason for that. If we rejoice in the Lord, always, if we live REJOICING, we will not be defeated. We will not be discouraged. We will not be let down. We will not lose! We cannot lose.
Trouble can be on our every side. The enemy can come in like a flood. But the Lord will inhabit our praises. He will inhabit our situation. So the standard will be lifted against the enemy and he will not prevail. The troubles will come and surround us, but no harm will come near us for God is with us!! He said He inhabits the praises of His people. If we are praising Him, if we are rejoicing in the Lord, always, He has taken up residence with us! He is already on the scene. All we need to do is to do what we were taught, live REJOICING! Make the decision to live REJOICING. Look out for the enemy of your soul, you know he’s coming, especially if you decided to live for the Lord… and fight. Put on your armor and stand still and see the salvation of the Lord. And pray and keep on praying. That’s how we live rejoicing. And that’s what a happy day is. When we live rejoicing!
Oh, yes, it was a happy day when Jesus washed. When Jesus saved me. But God is so so good. And He cares about us so very much, that it will be a happy day when we decide to live it rejoicing! He taught us how.
God is real. And He loves you!
A servant of the Lord,
Wednesday, June 9, 2010
He Taught Us How
Evelyn Fannell has the true heart of a servant. She spends a great deal of her time assisting friends, family, and others with a variety of plans and projects, always seeking simply to be of help; always going the extra mile. A writer since her youth, in 2008 Evelyn created the blog, But God Is Real, inspired by real life situations and circumstances that speak to the “realness” of God and His intervention in daily life. After the death of her son, Joseph, Evelyn started another blog, In the Shadow of Grief, created to chronicle the emotions and stages of grief so that she could help others through their journey of pain and sorrow. Along with the blog, Evelyn also started a grief support group on Facebook, under the same name, where members can share with one another in a supportive, non-judgmental environment In her spare time, Evelyn enjoys jigsaw puzzles, photography, and planning and creating items for special events. She also serves as First Lady and administrator of her church, On Good Ground Christian Fellowship, now in Charlotte, North Carolina. In addition to Joseph, she and her husband, Jeff, have two daughters, Brandi and Jasmine, and a grandson, Christian.