Friday, September 16, 2011

My Testimony, 111

 Photo source: www.heartlight.com

Please check the link in the sidebar to read parts 1 and 11 of my testimony, or click the links below before reading further.

This post may feel hurried because of the fact that I had to leave out so much information.  I really just wanted to concentrate on the key issues. Thanks for understanding!

Shortly after this experience, I found a little church a block from my home that I began to attend. It was November 1984 when I started going.  I was quite a shy person when I was young and it took me that long to get up the nerve to attend a church! There I was accepted. I didn't really know anyone well and it was hard to because I was a young adult but also a young single mother. I just couldn't afford a babysitter to participate in any programs. Then one of the ladies in the church called me one day and offered to babysit so I could go to the young adult and youth group with her kids.  It was there I met a young man named Graham who picked us up at the church to bring us to the Skating Rink (There's a whole story around that too, but no time to tell it). I found out some time later that he had been to different churches hoping to find a wife, and finally asked the Lord to bring his wife to his own church.

That Christmas I was going home to Lillooet to celebrate with my parents, but I stopped on the way to see an old friend who I’d worked with in Victoria. She and I had talked about going to some churches in Victoria but she was transferred to the mainland before we were able to do that. It was wonderful to see each other again, especially since this time we had both become Christians. As it turned out, I was in for an interesting night!

That evening a couple came by for a visit. He was a friendly looking young man with long-ish hair who carried a big floppy bible and an old well used guitar. His wife had Downs Syndrome - and they were happily married. That was the first strange thing of the night. It's not usual to see a healthy person married to someone with Downs. She was the sweetest girl though and she loved the Lord. We talked and sang songs and as time wore on he felt everyone should pray for me. The atmosphere in the room was really very pleasant, and though I might normally resist, this night I happily obliged.

They pulled up a chair and prayed. I raised my hands and I felt a soft gentle wind just barely touching my hands – except that it had such force that it physically moved my hands back! As that happened I started to speak in a strange language unknown to me. It bubbled up from me. They had prayed for the gift of tongues. What kind of God would give a child a stone when she asks for bread? I knew it was God but at the time I didn't really understand what had happened or what it meant. I was excited though. This was something new and it was real.

The next morning I took the Greyhound to Lytton with my young son, meeting up with my parents for the hour long ride back to their place. I was so excited about what happened the night before that I told them about it. They were sweet, but I noticed they gave each other strange looks. I knew that having been raised in a Presbyterian, and a United Church, they didn’t truly understand. 

This wonderful experience of receiving the Spirit had left me with a boundless amount of energy. Every night I went to bed early just to spend time with God. I would sing and pray and read His Word, which was precious to me -- though I understood very little of it. Truly, John is the place to start! This went on for about a week before something else incredible happened.

It was Christmas. I believed that my parents were going to ask me to pray for supper that night. I was so convinced of this that I spent some time thinking about what I was going to say. However, at suppertime my father prayed for the meal. So that was that. I forgot about praying and enjoyed the food thinking I had just been wrong. Then after supper my mother asked me to pray! I had completely forgotten that in my parents Dutch home we would pray before and after the meal! They pray before the meal to ask the blessing on the meal, and afterwards to thank God for the meal! It's really a very good thing!

I happily agreed to pray -- but then my mind just went completely blank! It was as if someone had wiped my mind clean.  All I could manage to sputter out was “Jesus, we love you!”

Then something miraculous happened!! 

A bubbling began inside of my stomach and it bubbled up into my esophagus, and it just kept coming. I couldn’t think, I didn’t know what was happening, but I knew it was okay. Then words just spilled out of my mouth! It was a completely strange situation. I did not hear the words and repeat them, I was literally having to listen to myself as I was speaking - to hear what I was saying!!! The words were not mine but they came out of my mouth. It was bizarre and I was totally unprepared, and maybe that was a good thing. The message was one of salvation and it was a strong message! Then the words just stopped. I said amen -- and it was done.

I don’t think anyone was more surprised than me!!

Then an excitement filled me -- but what could I say? Would they understand? They'd think I was loony. No, I'll just keep quiet.

We got up and mom and I began clearing the dishes. After a few minutes my mother asked me about the prayer. She wanted to know if I’d memorized it ahead of time. So again I got excited and enthusiastically told her what happened. My excitement was uncontainable! How could I keep it to myself? What an incredible experience! It changed a lot of people that night and it gave me a confidence in God that could not be shaken.

After Christmas I went home to Victoria with my son. Graham and I saw each other again in Church the first of January 1984. I invited him for coffee to my place that day and he invited me to a pot luck. We spent the afternoon together. Just 6 months later, on June16th 1984 we were married. Sometimes you just know!

And that is my testimony.

So you see...no one can convince me that God isn’t real!!

God is very real- and yes, he loves even you! It doesn’t matter what you’ve done because there are no degrees of ‘sin.’ All you have to do is recognize that you are in need of forgiveness and tell Him you realize this. Ask Him to forgive you and accept His Son Jesus as Lord, realizing that He paid a price on your behalf, one you could never pay, so that you could be saved from eternal death. He is a loving God.

Then read the Bible, because God says it is His Word. Believe what it says and most importantly, live like you believe it! Find a bible believing church, but realize that you won’t find a perfect person in it because we are all human and Christians aren’t perfect -- they are only saved and working towards being like Jesus, because He is our perfect example!

I sincerely hope my testimony has touched your heart, because that is the only reason I have finally shared it after all these years of wondering how to share such a big story. 

I am not the same as I was, and neither will you be. God will change you for the better. Trust Him!!

Part One
Part Two

Also check out my Bubbling Springs post, which goes into more detail on what happened at the Christmas Dinner.

Blessings!
Carmen

This story wouldn’t be complete without a family update. Graham and I have four sons: Chris, Darren, Mike and Tony. Chris is married to Julie, and they have a son and daughter; Darren is engaged to Angela, who has 3 children; Mike is married to Mandy; Tony is single and going to University. Graham and I have been married 27 years, and growing!

Thursday, September 15, 2011

My Testimony 11

 Graphic Source: Heartlight

Please read the first part of this testimony (link in sidebar) before reading further.
This post may feel hurried because of the fact that I had to leave out so much information.  I really just wanted to concentrate on the key issues. Thanks for understanding! 

It was the morning after the trial date. I shot up in my bed, wide eyed...I heard bike motors...lots and lots of bike motors! Fear gripped me with horrible visions of the Bikers coming back to take me yet again! As I got a hold of myself and calmed down a bit, I realized something was different. I heard motors on one side of the house, and motors starting up again on the other side of the house a bit in the distance--but what was that other noise right out front? Swish...swish...swish...!

I didn’t know it then, but there was a message in that series of noises. I--we, were safe! All was pardoned! No debt was owed. At that time I couldn’t relax until all the bikes had passed by and I was certain they weren't coming back. We had followed the advice of the officers and didn't testify. This was the bikers way of thanking us. It felt wrong, and yet it was a relief. Let me just say, unless you've been through it, you have no idea. Please understand.

I continued on in my new job and I started going to church with the girl that led me to the Lord. These people were different. They seemed nice enough and they were all kind to me, but I just never really fit in. My life was not in order, but I literally couldn’t afford to put it in order and there was no one to help. My family lived far away and my friends were all poor and somewhat suspicious about me becoming a ‘bible-thumper,’ Truthfully, I felt helpless and I didn't know what to do.

After I accepted the Lord I got a ride to church from my friend and her boyfriend, but that eventually stopped. Then I got my boyfriend to drive me, which he highly resented – and his vehicle often broke down anyway.  Then I took the bus, there and back every Sunday.­­­­ I lived in Burnaby, BC, and the church was in Langley, so it was a long drive! I joined an evening bible study and later I tried to join Bible school, but they wouldn’t accept me. I tried, I really tried, but I couldn’t seem to integrate with the people and I got a lot of resistance from my boyfriend. In the end it felt like everyone abandoned me. 

It had been maybe six months since the kidnapping and I had gone to church by bus that day. I had never felt so alone in church. I just wasn’t fitting in and people weren't taking time to talk with me, even when I approached them first. I did a lot of hard thinking that day during the long ride home. Finally, after reaching my destination, I got off the bus and started walking the rest of the way home.

Hot tears ran down my cheeks as I reasoned within myself that there was no place for me. No one wanted me there. I believed if God loved me then things would have been different. This was too hard and it wasn't working. I was caught between two worlds. So after much deliberation and many tears, I prayed. It was a simple prayer full of hopelessness.

“God, I don’t think you want me anymore....so I’m going to go now. If you ever want me back again, just call me, and I’ll come,” 

I meant it with my whole being and with that I stopped going to church, I stopped reading my Bible. I just stopped. I was devastated!

I’m going to condense the next 5 years:

In this time I started working in a bank and eventually left my boyfriend, who had a drinking problem. I then moved in with a girlfriend in Victoria on Vancouver Island. Later I met an old boyfriend whom I had been engaged to and still cared about and unfortunately ended up pregnant. I considered abortion, but thankfully gave birth to my son in December of 1982. I was living alone and except for the light my son gave me, I was lonely. Being a single mother was tough. Especially hard was having to leave my little boy with a caregiver while I worked to support him.

It was in the Fall of 1983 that something amazing happened. I had lost a lot of interest in things that normally interested me. I would turn on a music album, then shut it off; turn on the TV, surf through the channels and shut if off. Night after night I would put my son to bed and sit in front of my couch wondering what to do with myself. Nothing interested me, so I'd go to bed early.

Then one night while repeating this exercise, I heard a word in my mind. I didn’t really recognize it as a word I knew, I didn’t know how to spell it, but it sounded like this: ‘ee-fee-shuns.’ Perplexed I mulled it over and over in my mind.  I had gone to Sunday School as a child most of my life, so there was a distant familiarity -- perhaps it was a book in the Bible? I searched about the house quietly so as not to wake up my son, hoping I still had that old bible sitting around.

After 10 minutes or so I found it and turned to the contents to look for something that sounded like the word I heard in my mind. As soon as I found it, some numbers came to mind.

The word was 'Ephesians,' the numbers were 4 and 17.

Ephesians 4:17

“So this I say and solemnly testify in the Lord, that you must no longer live as the Gentiles do in the vanity of their minds.”

Then '23' popped into my head. So I turned there and read two verses:

“and be renewed in the spirit of your mind, and put on the new man, which after God is created in righteousness and true holiness.”

Suddenly it hit me! God was calling me back!!

Then I hurriedly read the whole passage (Ephesians 4:17-24).

Are you kidding me? I had prayed and said good-bye to Him 5 years ago, but I’d also told Him that if He called me I would come! Here it was! In His grace and mercy He once again called out to me to let me know He truly cared.  All I could do was weep tears of thankfulness!

I just want to say that God is faithful to His Word! He says that He will never leave us or forsake us -- and He sure didn't leave or forsake me! Even 5 years later!!

One more part to this story, and then I'll be done!

Part One
Part Three

Thanks for visiting!
Carmen

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

My Testimony

                                                                                     

I truly have an incredible testimony. If you know me, you would never think this would be my past. 

Writing my testimony has been an on again off again project for many years now, and I’ve realized that I would probably need a book to explain it coherently, but I’m going to do my best to condense it in a way that doesn’t leave too much information out. Please understand that because of this, the post below will feel somewhat hurried.  I really just want to concentrate on the key issues. Thanks for understanding! 

 So, I’m going to jump right into it without much background.

I was raised in a Christian home (presbyterian), but had never become a christian personally. I left home at around 18 years of age and moved in with a large group of people. Life was pretty much lived as a poor, but fairly happy person. Sometimes, things just happen though. People make bad decisions, and I can say that what follows happened because people didn't hear me. Though I led a questionable lifestyle, I knew this would lead to trouble -- and it did.

It was in the spring of 1978 that we were kidnapped one night by a bunch of bikers (Blue Mountain Bikers and Hell’s Angels). It was regarding large amounts of marijuana that friends of ours had stolen from a shed. It was traced back to us because my boyfriend had sold some of it on behalf of our friends, and the bikers identified it as the product that they had grown. They entered our home with guns, and after some 'discussion' took us under cover of darkness, placed us in vehicles with our heads between our knees with jackets over us, and then took us to an unknown location. 

There, my boyfriend and subsequently some other friends of ours were mercilessly beaten, and told that all that was stolen had to be paid back at street value plus interest. I was harassed by several of the men but personally never harmed -- but I was probably also the only one that prayed!  I made a promise to God that night, that should He get me out of this unharmed and alive, I would serve Him the rest of my days. It was the first time I'd prayed in years, but He heard me.

The next day the Bikers released me to my home, but because I was afraid to stay there alone, I went to my next door neighbors’ apartment, where I fell asleep from being up so long. My neighbors had to go out and since they knew me well (though they didn’t know why I was so tired) decided to leave me asleep at their home. I was utterly exhausted.

Due to some circumstances I was not aware of at that moment, the police found out what was happening and where I was. I was awakened by loud persistent knocking on the door and the continuous ringing of the neighbours telephone. Scared to death thinking the bikers had come back for me, I hid behind the bedroom door, but finally realized that it was the police. They took me into protective custody and processed me. They found my boyfriend and the bikers (also the biker girl who had masterminded the whole thing) and locked them up in the same jailhouse, but in a different section. They carried on all night hooting and hollering. I bunked with the biker chick.

A trial was to take place and we were supposed to be protected while trying to carry on life as normally as possible.  During this time, we were threatened repeatedly through phone calls at work and home, and had to deal with drive by incidences. We also had police escorts on our way to work and back.  It was a very, very trying time!! As the weeks wore on, some of the wives of the policemen on the case were threatened at their homes by the Hells Angels. When this happened, these policemen came to us and told us that though they could change our names and location, they would not protect us should we be found after that. They spent quite a bit of time talking to us and had some advice.

They encouraged us not to testify!!

Just a day prior to all of this I had started a new job. When I got to know some of the girls, I told one of them what was happening, and so it was that in the quiet of the lunch room she spoke to me about the Gospel. We talked about my life up until that time, and some of my regrets. I repented of many things I had done and thought and said. She told me how God had sent Jesus Christ to the world as a sacrifice for my sins because I couldn’t pay that price myself. It had to be paid by someone who could live a perfect life, and then die for sinners, taking all that punishment on himself. It had to be a perfect sacrifice, because someone personally undeserving of death could not be held in the grips of death and hell.  It was the only way possible. 

Jesus Christ loved me enough to do this for me! It was an overwhelming sacrifice and I cried at the undeserved mercy of it all. It brought me new hope!! I never realized that a simple prayer for safety in the middle of confusion, in a dingy old house full of violence and hatred could end up this way. I accepted Christ as my Saviour that day. I didn’t know it then, but my life would never be the same.

But there’s so very much more to this story. I’ve left out so many details in this portion alone, and yet there’s still so much more of my story to tell. It looks like this condensed version of my testimony is taking up more space than I intended, so there will be a couple more posts to follow.
Thanks for visiting!
Carmen
 

Monday, August 8, 2011

Sibling Rivalry

Check out "Coincidences, Warnings, or Judgments," for the post in conjunction with this one where I outline some disasters that seem to coincide with meetings and plans that focus on the dividing of the land of Israel.

Photo Source: Oh Baby! Baby Blog
All this is, is a case of sibling rivalry gone terribly wrong! 
 

Here’s what the Bible tells us:
Isaac and Ishmael's fight (fight between Jews; Arabs) over possession of Jerusalem has drawn the whole world into it - just as the prophets predicted. It is the culmination of Ishmael's 4,000 year-old hatred of his half brother Isaac, the forefather of the Israelites."

So Then Whose Land is it? 

Well, my guess is - whoever God gives it to.

Genesis 15:18
In the same day the LORD made a covenant with Abram, saying, Unto thy seed have I given this land, from the river of Egypt unto the great river, the river Euphrates.

Psalm 105:8
He hath remembered his covenant forever, the word which he commanded to a thousand generations.
(That’s over 70,000 years y’all!)


So if God gave the land to Israel, what happens to those who try to divide it?

Joel 3:2
I will also gather all nations, and will bring them down into the valley of Jehoshaphat, and will plead with them there for my people and [for] my heritage Israel, whom they have scattered among the nations, and parted my land. 

Obadiah 1:15
The prophet Obadiah warns that God "deals with any nation in direct relation to how that nation interacts with Israel. If a nation blesses Israel, God blesses that nation. If a nation curses Israel, He curses that nation.

"For the day of the LORD upon all the nations is near. As you have done (to Israel), it shall be done to you. Your reprisal shall return upon your own head"
 
Zechariah 12:3
 A prophecy God made 2,500 years ago through the Hebrew prophet Zechariah.
"And it shall happen in that day that I will make Jerusalem a very heavy stone for all peoples..." (meaning the entire world). All who would seek to heave it away will surely be cut in pieces."

"The original Hebrew makes the meaning of this even clearer. It reveals that everyone who tries to remove the heavy burden of the Jerusalem crisis will be utterly destroyed for getting involved with it." 

Prophetically speaking, who is involved?

Psalm 83;1-8
O God, do not remain silent; do not turn a deaf ear, do not stand aloof, O God. See how your enemies growl, how your foes rear their heads. With cunning they conspire against your people; they plot against those you cherish. “Come,” they say, “let us destroy them as a nation, so that Israel’s name is remembered no more.” With one mind they plot together; they form an alliance against you— the tents of Edom and the Ishmaelites, of Moab and the Hagrites, Byblos, Ammon and Amalek, Philistia, with the people of Tyre. Even Assyria has joined them to reinforce Lot’s descendants

Let’s identify these nations:

Tents of Edom: Jordanian descendants of Esau (the twin brother of Jacob). These have taken the name of Palestinians and are a nomadic people.

Ishmaelites: Arab descendants of Ishmael (1/2 brother of Isaac, Hagar’s son).  Modern day Egypt.

Moab: Also Jordanians

Hagrites: Egyptian descendants of Hagar (Sarah’s maid). The distinction between Hagrites and Ishmaelites, are that the Hagrites are children from a father other than Abraham.

Byblos or Gebal: Located on the Meditteranean coast of modern day Lebanon; the northern part which borders Syria.

Ammon:These are also Jordanians that refer to themselves as Palestinians.

Amalek: These are from the huge pot of Arabs in the Middle East

Philistia: Arabs in the Gaza strip who are descendants of the Philistines, but not necessarily Palestinians. Basically Arab peoples who reside in the Gaza Strip today.

Tyre: Southern Lebanon, which has been taken over by Hamas today.

Assyria: Literally Syria, Iraq and Turkey.

Well folks - I may be old, but I guarantee you, I didn't write this in the Bible. How could they have known?

Keep watching!

Thanks for visiting,
Carmen

Coincidences, Warnings, or Judgments?

 Photo Source: The Armenian Weekly

Sometimes we miss what’s right in front of us and we don’t see the bigger picture. Today I want to talk a little bit about America and Israel. I’m going to do it easily laid out in point form so that you can decide if it’s coincidence or if there’s a bigger picture there.

October 30, 1991
As President George Bush Sr. Opens the Madrid (Spain) Conference to consider “land for peace” in Israel’s Middle East role, the Perfect Storm develops in the North Atlantic which creates the largest waves ever recorded in that region. The storm travels 1000 miles from “east to west” instead of the normal “west to east” pattern and crashes into the New England Coast. During this storm, thirty-five foot waves crash into the Kennebunkport home of President Bush.

August 23, 1992
The Madrid Conference is moved to Washington DC and the peace talks are resumed. The same day Hurricane Andrew produces an estimated $30 billion in damage on the Florida coast. It is the worst natural disaster ever to hit America!

January 16, 1994
President Bill Clinton meets Syria 's President Hafez el-Assad in Geneva. They discuss a peace agreement with Israel that would include Israel giving up the Golan Heights. Within 24 hours a powerful (6.9 on the Richter scale) earthquake rocks Southern California! The Northridge earthquake becomes the second most destructive natural disaster to hit the United States behind Hurricane Andrew.

January 21, 1998
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu is coldly received at the White house by Clinton and Secretary of State Madeleine Albright. They even refuse to have lunch with him. Shortly afterwards on that same day, the Monica Lewinsky scandal breaks into the mass media and begins to occupy a major portion of Clinton's time.

September 28, 1998
Secretary of State Albright works on the final details of an agreement in which Israel would give up 13% of Judea and Samaria. Hurricane George, with winds of 110mph gusting up to 175mph, slams into the United States Gulf Coast...then it stalls...

Clinton meets with Arafat and Netanyahu at the White House to finalize this land deal. Later Arafat addresses the United Nations about declaring an independent Palestinian state by May 1999. Hurricane George pounds the Gulf Coast causing $1 billion in damage. At the exact time Arafat departs the country, the storm starts to dissipate.

October 15-22, 1998       
Arafat and Natanyahu meet at the Wye River Plantation in Maryland. The five day talks have a focus on Israel giving up 13% of Judea and Samaria. The talks are extended and conclude on October 23rd.        On October 17th Southern Texas is hit with incredible rains and flooding and continue until October 22nd and then subside.   The floods ravage 25% of Texas and leave over $1 billion in damage. On October 21, Clinton declares this section of Texas a major disaster area.

November 30, 1998       
 Arafat comes to Washington to raise money for a Palestinian state with Jerusalem as the capital. A total of 42 other nations were represented in Washington. All agreed to give Arafat $3 billion in aid. That same day the Dow Jones average drops 216 points. The next day the European Market had its worst day in history. Hundreds of billions of market capitalization were wiped out in U.S. and Europe.

December 12, 1998       
Clinton lands in the Palestinian-controlled section of Israel to discuss the "land for peace" process.        The House of Representatives votes four articles of impeachment against Clinton.

May 3, 1999       
This day Yasser Arafat was scheduled to declare a Palestinian state with Jerusalem as its capital.        The most powerful super tornado storm system ever to hit the United States swept across Oklahoma and Kansas. Winds are clocked at 316mph, the fastest wind speed ever recorded.       
The declaration is postponed to December 1999 at the request of Clinton, whose letter to Arafat encourages him in his "aspirations for his own land".

October 11 1999       
Jewish settlers in 15 "West Bank" (Israel) settlements are evicted from the covenant land in Israel.        That week the Dow Jones financial averages loses 5.7% in the worst week since October 1989. On October 15 the Dow lost 266 points.        

On October 15 a hurricane slams into North Carolina.
Then the morning of October 16, a magnitude 7.1 earthquake rocks the Southwest in the fifth most powerful earthquake in the 20th century. The earthquake was centred in the California desert and did little damage but was felt in three states.

August 2005    
In response to the American Foreigh Policy pressure exerted by Condoleeza Rice, Jewish families were evicted from their homes in the Gaza communities as part of Ariel Sharon's "Disengagement" plan.  As the Jews were being removed from their homes, a weather system was forming in the Atlantic.  This storm became Hurricane Katrina, which destroyed New Orleans, Louisiana - and an area the size of Britain, rendering thousands of Americans homeless and leaving thousands dead.   

Coincidences? Warnings? or Judgments? 

What do you think?

Keep watching!


Carmen

Check out "Sibling Rivalry" for the continuation of this post.

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

The Feast of Trumpets 2011

The seven feasts of the Lord are prophetic in nature and rich with meaning!

While the first four Feasts have been fulfilled, the last three remain to be filled. The first four are referred to as the "Feasts of the Former Rain." and the last three are "Feasts of the Latter Rain." There is a strong possibility that the first of these remaining feasts could be fulfilled shortly. I don't propose to set any dates, but I do want to awaken you to the fact that it may be soon.

 I want to give you some basic information on the Feasts, and that is most easily done with the chart below. Note that I mention what each feast meant to the Jewish people, which ones are fulfilled, how they're fulfilled, which ones are awaiting fulfillment, and what they may symbolize.

The 7 Feasts of the Lord


Leviticus 23:5
Passover Feast
(redemption from sin through the Lamb. 1 Cor 5: 7,8)
Fulfilled! Exact day and hour of Crucifixion
"He was wounded for our transgressions, He was bruised for our iniquities, surely He bore our sorrows, and by His stripes we are healed!"
Leviticus 23:6-8
Feast of Unleavened Bread
(cleansing from sin. 1 John 1:9)
Fulfilled! Exact day of Christ’s Burial
Leviticus 23:9-14
Feast of Firstfruits (3 days later)
(giving first fruits to the Lord; Messiah, the first from the dead. 1 Cor. 15:20)
Fulfilled! Exact day of resurrection of Christ (3 days later)
Leviticus 23:15-22
Pentecost (50 days later)
Aka: Feast of weeks
(body of Messiah, empowered! Acts 2:1-4)
Fulfilled! Birth of the church (50 days later)
Leviticus 23:23-25
Feast of Trumpets
Aka: Rosh HaShanah
Aka: Wedding of the Messiah and Church
(gathering of the people together; we are gathered up to the Messiah. 1 Thess 4: 16,17)
Symbolic of the Rapture of the church.
Unique to this feast is that they did not know the exact time this took place. More below.
Leviticus 23:26-32
Day of Atonement
Aka: Yom Kippur
(solemn assembly for repentance; perfect atonement through the Messiah Hebrews 2:17)
Symbolic of the Second Coming of Christ Jesus
Leviticus 23: 33-
Feast of Tabernacles
Aka: Feast of Booths
Aka: Sukkot
Symbollic of the Millenium

Today I'm going to briefly outline some things that are leading up to this years Feast of Trumpets, which is to take place sometime between Sept 29th and 30th, 2011 (as no man knows the exact day or hour)!

A quick outline:

1) The UN wants to pass a resolution this September recognizing a Palestinian State using pre-1967 borders. This will move Israel's boundaries, or borderstones. This may start a war, and it will definitely anger God and set in motion an unstoppable momentum according to Scripture. Zechariah 12:1-3; Psalm 83:1-8,12

2)The Fall Election in Egypt. The Muslim Brotherhood, whose campaign slogan last year was "Islam is the solution," claim they will not be running a religious state, should they win, which they almost certainly will. Considering their past involvement in many events...what do you believe?

3) Speculative in its effect, but worth mentioning nonetheless, Comet Elenin is expected to pass quite closely between the sun and the earth September 26-28, 2011.
On one side, NASA is claiming this is nothing more than a comet that will have little effect on the earth, on the other side some scientists and private researchers claim it is a large planetary body; possibly a brown dwarf star, which may have calamitous effects on the earth. Many expect it will increase seismic activity on the earth, and some even claim it may bring days of darkness on the earth.

4) September 29-30, 2011 Israel celebrates the Feast of Trumpets. This Feast is unique in that no one knows exactly what day or hour this Feast begins. The Rabis keep watch during the dates of the Feast and blow the Shofar to signify the start of the Feast at the sighting of the New Moon. This has been difficult at times in the past due to clouding. Imagine how difficult it would be if something were in the way and the moon could not be seen.
Many believe that this Feast signifies the Rapture of the Church. If Elenin does affect the earth with darkness, the statement "I come as a thief in the night," becomes even more notable. If this were the case, no one could know the exact day or hour.

Again, I do not know when these things will take place. I don't know if the Rapture happens this year, but I'm watching. I do want to mention this Scripture though:
"But of the times and the seasons, brethren, ye have no need that I write unto you. For yourselves know perfectly that the day of the Lord so cometh as a thief in the night. For when they shall say, Peace and safety; then sudden destruction cometh upon them, as travail upon a woman with child; and they shall not escape. But ye, brethren, are not in darkness, that that day should overtake you as a thief."  1 Thessalonians 5:1-4

As christians, we are to be watching, awake and aware of the season that is upon us! I know this is overwhelming and perhaps nonsensical for those who are unfamiliar with the Bible. The amazing thing about the Bible is that it's truth is not only felt in our spiritual core, but it fulfills itself through many passages from the past right up until this day, if only you'd look. It is truly amazing!

Our belief is by faith in God, and yet, in His grace and mercy, He has given us many signs; many fulfilled prophecies, and many prophecies that are currently in the process of fulfillment. What an incredible day and time we live in. The signs are everywhere!

Keep watching!

Blessings,
Carmen

Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Watching the Middle East

I've been keeping a close eye on the Middle East these days. There are so many voices and rumblings going on. I'm wondering how things are going to pan out this September, when the U.N. General Assembly will put in their vote to recognize a Palestinian state along Israel's 1967 borders. This would be catastrophic for Israel, and could force them to war.

So today I wanted to post a video on just how this looks for Israel.



It appears that a UN resolution to recognize a Palestinian State within 1967 borders would be illegal according to jurists and international lawyers from around the world according to this LETTER written to the UN Secretary General, Ban Ki Moon.

 Truthfully, I wondered how on earth they could just claim the territory as theirs and then put Israel in a place of defense on their own borders....whether the Palestinians recognize them as such, or not. Israel did win the land during a war that Israel did not start. I am not anti Palestinian, but do not agree with their methods regarding this issue.

Thanks for watching and have a good week!

Carmen

Monday, May 9, 2011

Defining God and Magog

Good Morning!

I’ve been reading Joel Rosenberg’s Blog today and wanted to share something of his. After studying various thoughts on the identity of God and Magog, I can agree with the way Joel has outlined them here, although as time goes on, the identity of these peoples and nations will become much clearer.  I know eschatology is a difficult subject for some people, and there are various interpretations, but it is interesting nonetheless so I hope you’ll review these points below which come from Joel's point of view on Joel’s Blog.


Defining Gog and Magog
  1. The Hebrew Prophet Ezekiel lived in Babylon (Iraq) more than 2,500 years ago and the Lord gave him a vision of events that would take place in the future.
  2. Ezekiel 38:16 specifically tells us these events will take place in the “last days” — that is in the End Times before the Messiah comes to set up His kingdom on earth.
  3. Ezekiel chapters 36 and 37 set the stage for the “War of Gog and Magog” by describing that Israel will be reborn as a country in the last days, the Jewish people will come back to the Holy Land from exile all over the world, the Jewish people will rebuild the ancient ruins and make the deserts bloom again. These things have all happened, and this suggests we are getting closer to the fulfillment of the next set of prophecies.
  4. Ezekiel 38:2 tells us that the war will be led be someone known as “Gog.” This is not a personal name. We’re not looking for someone named David Gog. Or Ahmed Gog. Or Dmitri Gog. Rather, “Gog” is a title, like a “Pharoah” or a “Czar.” Through the prophecy, this Gog is described as a military leader, a political leader, and a coalition builder. In Ezekiel 38:10 he is described as developing an “evil plan,” we know this is an evil man, a tyrant.
  5. The Hebrew prophet gives us more clues. This “Gog” is going to be from the “land of Magog.” One has to do some historical detective work to determine what Magog is, but it is possible. Flavius Josephus, the first century Roman historian, wrote in his famous book, The Antiquities of the Jews, that the people of Magog are the people whom the Greeks called “Scythians.” This is a critical clue because we know from history that the Scythians were a people group that migrated from the Middle East northward and settled north of the Black Sea and the Caspian Sea in the region we know today as Russia and the former Soviet Republics.
  6. There are other interesting clues, as well. Ezekiel 38:15 says that Gog “will come from your place out of the remote parts of the north.” Ezekiel 39:2 says Gog will come “from the remotest parts of the north” and come “against the mountains of Israel.” The country that is farthest to the north in relation to Israel is Russia.
  7. Thus, we can determine that a Russian dictator will build a diplomatic and military coalition to surround and attack the State of Israel in the End Times.
  8. The question then is what other countries will be part of the coalition?
  9. In Ezekiel 38:5, we learn that the first ally Russia will have is “Persia.” Until 1935, of course, Persia was the legal name of the country we know today as Iran. So we know that Russia and Iran will build an alliance in the last days to attack Israel.
  10. Ezekiel tells us that another country in the alliance will be what many English Bible translate as “Ethiopia.” The Hebrew word, however, is “Cush” and Cush is the upper Nile region that we now know as Sudan. While the current state of Ethiopia may also be involved in the war, the focus is really Sudan, which today, of course, is a radical Islamic Sunni state closely allied with Iran and Russia and deeply anti-Semitic and anti-Israel.
  11. Next, Ezekiel says a nation called “Put” will be part of the alliance. Josephus identifies “Put” as “ancient Lybios” — the territory that today we call Libya and Algeria. Interestingly, both countries today are deeply hostile to Israel and closely allied with Russia.
  12. The next country mentioned is “Gomer.” When one does the historical detective work, one learns that Gomer is what we now call Turkey. For much of the past 80 years, it didn’t make sense that Turkey would turn against Israel. Why? Because Turkey was a NATO ally, and a friend of Israel, the U.S. and the European Union. But in the last few years, the Turkish government has swung dramatically away from the West, towards Russia and Iran, and become deeply hostile towards the State of Israel.
  13. The next country Ezekiel mentions is “Beth Togarmah.” This is the Turkic-speaking peoples that spread out from Turkey across the Causasus, and across Central Asia. We can’t be certain precisely which modern nation states from this area will join the anti-Israel alliance, because these are almost all Muslim countries with close links to Russia and Iran.
  14. Interestingly, Egypt is not mentioned by Ezekiel as part of the Russian-Iranian alliance against Israel. This is interesting because Egypt has been such an historic enemy of Israel and the Jewish people. That said, perhaps Egypt’s non-involvement in the War of Gog and Magog could be explained by the peace treaty Egypt signed with Israel in 1979. This treaty is now in danger of unraveling, but at least for the near term Egypt is still unlikely to be in a position to strategically threaten Israel.
  15. Iraq — whether under its biblical names of Babel, Babylon, Babylonia, Shinar, or Mesopotamia — isn’t mentioned in the prophecy either, yet it, too, is an historic enemy of Israel. Still, given the liberation of Iraq in 2003, the subsequent violence, and the rebuilding now going on, Iraq is not likely to be a threat to Israel in the near term.
  16. Syria and Lebanon are not mentioned by named in the prophecy either. However, Ezekiel tells us repeatedly that the main military force that will be coming against Israel will be coming from the north, which means they will be coming through Lebanon and Syria.
I think the above is good information to keep handy for future reference. As for the final outcome - we'll have more insight as time goes on. Until next time,

Thank you for stopping by!

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

A Call to Anguish - David Wilkerson

As I write this post, my heart calls out to God, "Lord, what should I say?" You know, in my 33 years of being a christian, I've said a lot of things, I've heard a lot of things, I've seen a lot of things. What I'm seeing today makes me sad. What makes me even sadder is the condition of my own heart, though I long for more. This morning I read the lyrics to a song by Casting Crowns called "Stained Glass Masquerade," and I knew it was true.

The East cries out and calls us heathen because of the lifestyles we live, and you know, they're not far from wrong...I'm not saying they're right in how they behave, but they're not wrong about us. We live a stained glass masquerade, and we long to be pampered. We have bought into the lies so rampant amongst us. If we truly had the heart of God, then we would cry out in anguish over what we see around us; our families, our friends, our neighbors, and we would pray! I'm not pointing fingers here, without pointing them at myself first. No wonder our churches do not impact the world when there is no notable difference between the church and the world.

The time is short, it really is. There are those who say that many people in the past have said that they lived at the time of the end. That is true, but not all Scripture was fulfilled. Never before have we been so close to seeing all prophecy fulfilled. It is close, even at the door. Where is the sign of his coming? It is everywhere. In the church, even in its people, and in the world. Signs everywhere. Do not miss them! Read the Word!

Here are the words to Stained Glass Masquerade. Once you've read them, check out the video below for a heart felt call to Anguish.

Stained Glass Masquerade

Is there anyone that fails
Is there anyone that falls
Am I the only one in church today feelin’ so small

Cause when I take a look around
Everybody seems so strong
I know they’ll soon discover
That I don’t belong

So I tuck it all away, like everything’s okay
If I make them all believe it, maybe I’ll believe it too
So with a painted grin, I play the part again
So everyone will see me the way that I see them

*Chorus*
Are we happy plastic people
Under shiny plastic steeples
With walls around our weakness
And smiles to hide our pain
But if the invitation’s open
To every heart that has been broken
Maybe then we close the curtain
On our stained glass masquerade

Is there anyone who’s been there
Are there any hands to raise
Am I the only one who’s traded
In the altar for a stage

The performance is CONVINCING
And we know every line by heart
Only when no one is watching
Can we really fall apart

But would it set me free
If I dared to let you see
The truth behind the person
That you imagine me to be

Would your arms be open
Or would you walk away
Would the love of Jesus
Be enough to make you stay

Chorus x2

Well if the invitation’s open
To every heart that has been broken
Maybe then we close the curtain
On our stained glass masquerade

Is there anyone that fails
Is there anyone that falls
Am I the only one in church today feelin’ so small

by: Casting Crowns

A Call To Anguish, by David Wilkerson



I hope and pray that this post touches you. I have always studied end times doctrine and find it fascinating. Yet the more I read, the more I realize that the time truly is at hand. My intent is not to uncover, upset, or scare anyone in any way. My intent is to warn you that the time is at hand. I hope you'll take note.

Thanks for watching,
Carmen

Saturday, January 29, 2011

Whispers


                                                                       Source: Infinitearethestars

Shards of glass lay scattered across the faded wood floor in the attic room. A large antique, artistically framed mirror leans against a wooden post, most of its glass gone. Pieces of it cling onto the aged frame, reflecting beams of light. These come through the dusty old window, perched crookedly below the slanted ceiling. I calmly observe the light playing through the floating dust.

Then I hear them.

Whispers fill the room.

Subtle sheens of movement in some of the glass catch my attention. Each wave is familiar to me and tells a story. Carefully, I pick up a piece and smile, lingering at its memory, feeling its warmth swell up inside of me as I hear and embrace the story it conveys. 

Music flows from other shards of the mirror. A mixture of happy, reflective, playful and cheerful sounds. Each reveal a story within it, but I realize that the music has created the life which is echoed in its glass. Their messages return full force, bringing forgotten awareness, as real as if it were happening right then.

Another piece displays the innocence and selfishness of youth. With renewed interest and amusement I wistfully observe, relieved at the wisdom that develops with age, but knowing I still have much to learn. 

Many of the pieces lay face down. Curiosity invites me to turn one over, but with immediate horror and disdain I thrust it back onto the cold hard floor! A churning feeling rolls within, sickening me. Hot tears flow. Why? How could I? I back away and leave them there face down - to keep their stories within themselves. I cannot bear them now.

Still another piece brings no emotion at all. It is dead, helpless, hopeless. This piece suffocates as I fight to keep it from enveloping me with its clench. This lack of emotion is the hardest to break from. It feels as if it has dark and emotionless, life-quenching eyes. I forcingly break its hold and lunge back, numb.

I cannot walk away nor change it, and yet I cannot fully embrace it. Still, it is my life and I was too pre-occupied to fully notice or understand the implications of how I have lived it. Overwhelmed, I close my eyes, re-focus and am transported. Warmth embraces me and I soak it up. It is a pure and forgiving love. A sense of reward that I do not deserve, but still it holds me closely, dearly. In this moment, it is my only desire and I want to stay here forever.

But my life is not complete. There is more living to do.

Whispers fill my heart.

Come to Me. Lay your burdens on me and I will give you rest.

I breathe in, and breathe out. There is hope.

Again He whispers – whatever things are honest, just, pure, lovely, and of good report, think on these things. You are loved.

I embrace Him, and again He whispers - I will never leave you. No, never.

Gratefully, tearfully,

I whisper...thank you!

I awaken.

Friday, January 7, 2011

Eyes to See, Ears to Hear.


 It surprises me how I can read portions of the Bible, and miss things over and over again. Has that ever happened to you?

It is common knowledge to some that the Jews killed Christ. Isn't that what we hear being preached from some podiums? Isn't that one of the reasons the Jews have had such a tumultuous history? Wasn't that Hitler's (and others') peeve with the Jews?

Yes, the Jewish leaders of that day wanted Christ dead and enticed the people to ask for his death. That is true.

However, it was not by their hand that he died.

The usual punishment of that day for Jews, was death by stoning. For Romans, it was death by crucifixion.

I came across this Scripture today that I've read time and again. This time something stood out.

From the words of Christ (AMP)

Luke 18:31-33

Then taking the Twelve aside, He said to them, Listen! We are going up to Jerusalem, and all things that are written about the Son of Man through and by the prophets will be fulfilled. (Isa. 53:1-12)

For He will be handed over to the Gentiles and will be made sport of and scoffed and jeered at and insulted and spit upon. (Isa. 50:6)

They will flog Him and kill Him; and on the third day He will rise again. (Ps. 16:10)

This may not be news to you, and it wasn't really news to me. I know how the story unfolds.

However, I had still believed the common teaching that the Jews killed Christ.

In fact,  it was a combined effort! The Roman leader Pontius Pilate, with the co-operation of some Jewish leaders in Jerusalem brought about the death of Jesus.

Even the saying in Matthew 27:25 ("His blood be upon us and upon our children") is best taken as referring to the crowd manipulated by the leaders, and to the destruction of Jerusalem in a.d. 70 ("our children")~ not to the whole Jewish people for all ages.

As Christians, we need to be sensitive to the tendency to blame only the Jewish people, when clearly the Romans played a direct role.

Most of the Gospels give the impression that the Jewish leaders manipulated Pilate and that they turned Jesus over to him for execution. The Gospel of John even seems to imply that all Jesus' opponents were Jews.  You have to remember that at this time Jerusalem had been destroyed and Christians were still adjusting to life within the Roman Empire. When taken out of context, these texts can contribute to, and seemingly justify anti-semitism.

We know Jesus was killed. We know it was a terrible injustice that should never have happened. At this point in His story, what's more important is what His death and His life brought us. Simply stated; through His life, He gave us an example of how we ought to live; through His death He provided an entry into eternal life for all those who would repent of their sins, believe in Him and obey His commands.

" They have eyes but do not see, they have ears but do not hear."
Jeremiah 5:21; Ezekiel 12:2; Mark 8:18; Acts 28:26,27

Therefore, the aim of this post is to encourage you to read your Bibles prayerfully, with your eyes and hearts open to understand what is written.

Thank you for visiting and have a good weekend!

Carmen