Another Gut Punch!

January 17, 2021:  (Post #58)

(From Journal #8:   December 13, 2006)

Yesterday was my first round of immunotherapy again.  What a long day. Left the house at 7:30 a.m. and didn’t get home until almost 6:00 p.m.  I had another allergic reaction, so that slowed things down.  But this reaction wasn’t as severe as last time, so I am grateful.

My last CT scan report obviously wasn’t what I was believing for.  The lymph nodes that had previously shrunk had grown and a few more lymph nodes in that vicinity were larger.  I’m not going to try and pretend with You because You know the truth anyway.  I was disappointed and not excited about having to do treatments again.  The enemy has tried to bring frightening thoughts to my mind, but I refuse to listen.  I will take this treatment with the same faith as before!

I see how my quiet time with You keeps getting interrupted; the enemy knows “interruption and distraction” are his greatest weapons.  I need the Word before my eyes as well as in my ears. “Seeing is believing” and I need to “see” the Word as well as “hear” it.  His goal is to keep me from everything that increases my faith.  Help me to not cooperate with his schemes.

I know the truth and the truth shall set me free.  I will not let go of my confidence.  You are faithful.  Any thoughts that come into my mind contrary to Your Word, I resist in Jesus’ Name!

Romans 10:17:  So then faith comes by hearing, and hearing by the word of God.

Proverbs 4:20-22:  My son, pay attention to what I say; turn your ear to my words. Do not let them out of your sight, keep them within your heart; for they are life to those who find them and health to one’s whole body.

John 8:31-32:  And you shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free.”

Don’t Fuel the Unbelief

September 27, 2020  (Post #51)

(From Journal #5:  April 20, 2006)

I watched a great teaching yesterday and the woman said something that hit me right between the eyes:  “Fear is an emotional response to unbelief.”  

Unbelief is actually a spiritual thing that produces a physical, natural response:  fear!  When fear attacks, I pray You will help me check myself, and let You show me any areas of unbelief.  For instance, this thing about my heart having some weird symptoms has caused fear.  I know that fear is not of  You.  The enemy uses fear to fuel unbelief.  Wow!  We’re on to him, Lord.

I also see another way that I open myself up for the enemy to attack me with fear.  It’s been several days since I’ve been in my journal.  I have missed You and I know You didn’t go anywhere…  I traveled to see my family and have been busy and distracted.  In other words, I didn’t keep my time in prayer and in the Word as my top priority.  I threw up some hurried verbal prayers, but I have missed my deep written prayers and conversations with you.  They’re a record of our relationship and are priceless.  

Oh Jesus, I cannot live and function without You.  I see what happens to me after about three days and it’s not good.  It affects my temperament and I become impatient with others rather than walking in love.  I catch myself grumbling and complaining rather than having a heart of joy, peace and gratitude.  Forgive me.

You are my rock, my source of everything.  You are faithful when I am not.  I thank You for never leaving me nor forsaking me.

2 Timothy 1:7:  For God has not given us a spirit of fear, but of power and of love and of a sound mind.

1 Peter 5:7-8:  …casting all your anxiety upon Him, for He cares for you.  Be alert and of sober mind. Your enemy the devil prowls around like a roaring lion looking for someone to devour. Resist him, standing firm in the faith…

Psalm 91:1-2:  He who dwells in the shelter of the Most High will rest in the shadow of the Almighty.   I will say of the LORD, “He is my refuge and my fortress, my God, in whom I trust.”

Take a Stand!

September 20, 2020  (Post #50)

(From Journal #5:  April 1, 2006)

A few months ago You taught me about the significance of the order in which we put on the “armor of God.”  Yesterday, You showed me something else in Ephesians 6:13-14:  “Therefore take up the whole armor of God that you may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all to standStand therefore  

Standing while “having done all” means waiting in both an offensive and defensive posture.  It’s in this “standing phase” where faith must keep us strong as we often fight fear and unbelief.  Satan always tries to make us doubt during the seasons of standing because he knows we cannot please You without faith. 

I must take up the armor.  It requires action and choice on my part.  It’s an offensive stand of attack by praying and speaking Your Word which is true, alive, active!  Then I go on alert and defensively stand my ground in the Lord no matter how long the wait!

Truth = Belt

Righteousness = Breastplate

Peace = Feet

Faith = Shield

Salvation = Helmet

Word of God = Sword

Prayer/Alertness = Standing!

Ephesians 6:10-18: Finally, my brethren, be strong in the Lord and in the power of His might. Put on the whole armor of God, that you may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil. For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this age, against spiritual hosts of wickedness in the heavenly places. Therefore take up the whole armor of God, that you may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand. Stand therefore, having girded your waist with truth, having put on the breastplate of righteousness, and having shod your feet with the preparation of the gospel of peace; above all, taking the shield of faith with which you will be able to quench all the fiery darts of the wicked one. And take the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God; praying always with all prayer and supplication in the Spirit, being watchful to this end with all perseverance and supplication for all the saints—

Hebrews 11:6:   But without faith it is impossible to please Him, for he who comes to God must believe that He is, and that He is a rewarder of those who diligently seek Him.


Don’t Lose Your Passion

September 13, 2020  (Post #49)

(From Journal #5:  March 28, 2006)

A few days ago on a Christian TV show, a couple of teachers said we should be seeing more of the miraculous today.  I agree with them because You said in John 14:12-14“Most assuredly, I say to you, he who believes in Me, the works that I do he will do also; and greater works than these he will do, because I go to My Father. And whatever you ask in My name, that I will do, that the Father may be glorified in the Son. If you ask anything in My name, I will do it.”  

This hit home because recently I’ve been attacked by frightening symptoms again regarding my heart.  I am standing on Your Word that I am healed of non-Hodgkins Lymphoma and my heart is fine.  But I confess I questioned if my faith is weak or hindered by unbelief as the reason I’ve not seen the miraculous full manifestation of healing?  You’ve been taking me on this study of “Seeing is Believing” so why wasn’t I “seeing” the results?  A couple of days later, You gave me some insight on another Christian TV show.  This pastor’s sermon was “Power follows Passion.”

He taught about how those who had a passion for You and pursued You no matter what, received power in their lives. This bore witness with my spirit on what you showed me before about “forceful men lay hold of it.” He said that when we’re down to nothing, You’re up to something!  He gave examples of people with passion who had seasons of nothing before their breakthroughs (like Joseph).  But they kept their passion for the Lord, and the power came.  This really blessed me.

Another good point he made jumped out at me.  The woman with the issue of blood was the first to receive healing by touching Jesus’ garment.  Everyone else either had hands laid on them, or Jesus spoke a word.  She, because of her passion, kept pursuing Jesus and when she touched him, He felt the power go out of Him to heal her.  I’d never really thought about it, but women were the ones who often had the passion to pursue Jesus.  This woman did; there was the woman who was willing to eat crumbs off the floor, and of course Mary Magdeline.  

I never want to lose passion for You, Lord.  I’ve seen the difference in my life and I don’t want to go back.  No matter how long it takes, I’m not letting go of Your garment.

Luke 8:43-48:  Now a woman, having a flow of blood for twelve years, who had spent all her livelihood on physicians and could not be healed by any, came from behind and touched the border of His garment. And immediately her flow of blood stopped.  And Jesus said, “Who touched Me?”  When all denied it, Peter and those with him said, “Master, the multitudes throng and press You, and You say, ‘Who touched Me?’ ”But Jesus said, “Somebody touched Me, for I perceived power going out from Me.” Now when the woman saw that she was not hidden, she came trembling; and falling down before Him, she declared to Him in the presence of all the people the reason she had touched Him and how she was healed immediately. And He said to her, “Daughter, be of good cheer; your faith has made you well. Go in peace.”

Matthew 11:12:  “From the days of John the Baptist until now, the kingdom of heaven has been forcefully advancing, and forceful men lay hold of it.”

Seeing is Believing (Part 3)

September 6, 2020  (Post #48)

(From Journal #4:  March 24, 2006)

As I continue to study “seeing is believing” it is striking at how most forgot the miracles they witnessed, even John the Baptist…the one who baptized Jesus! It seems if anyone would never waver, it would be him.  And yet, while imprisoned he sent his disciples to ask Jesus in Matthew 11:3 …“Are You the Coming One, or do we look for another?”  Jesus’ response to the disciples was to go back and remind John what he had heard and seen.  In other words, he had witnessed enough to know that Jesus is the Messiah.  This also shows me that all of us can fall into doubt and unbelief if we focus on our problems rather than reflect on what we have seen.  

Jesus rebuked the cities in which most of His miracles had been done because they would not believe what they had seen and repent.  There were those who saw Your miracles and marveled and believed, but it was the religious leaders, the Pharisees and the Sadducees who saw the same things, yet rejected You and asked for more “signs.”  They had “eyes of darkness.”  Jesus said cities that had been destroyed due to their wickedness would have repented in sackcloth and ashes if they had seen Jesus’ miracles!  The people and cities who saw and yet would not believe are without excuse.  That’s true for us today.

In John 4:46-54, a nobleman whose son was dying went to find Jesus and asked him to come heal his son. He wanted to “see” this.  Jesus said to him, “Go your way; your son lives.”  So the man believed the word that Jesus spoke to him, and he went his way.  And as he was now going down, his servants met him and told him, saying, “Your son lives!”  Then he inquired of them the hour when he got better.  And they said to him, “Yesterday at the seventh hour the fever left him.  So the father knew that it was at the same hour in which Jesus said to him, “Your son lives.”  And he himself believed, and his whole household. Just like the centurion, this man “believed without seeing.”

I think of the formula “If A=B, and B=C, then A=C.”  If “seeing is believing” then “believing is seeing.”  IS is a verb of being:  God is I AM, therefore, I AM is God!

Lord, help me hold on to this as I battle non-Hodgkins lymphoma, and life in general which is full of hardships.  Help me to…

  • See and believe in the present
  • Remember what I have seen and believed in the past
  • Believe without seeing in the future.

Seeing is Believing (Part 2)

August 29, 2020   (Post #47)

(From Journal #4:   March 22, 2006)

Lord, there are two accounts in Matthew where You healed the blind, and asked them interesting, yet very different questions?  

To the first men who kept following You and crying out for mercy, You asked in Matthew 9:27-29, …“Do you believe that I am able to do this?”  They said to Him, “Yes, Lord.”  Then He touched their eyes, saying, “According to your faith let it be to you.”  

And to the second men sitting by the road who kept crying out to you for mercy, even though the crowd warned them to be quiet, You stood still and called them and asked in Matthew 20:32-34, What do you want Me to do for you?” They said to Him, “Lord, that our eyes may be opened.” So Jesus had compassion and touched their eyes.  And immediately their eyes received sight, and they followed Him.”

These questions seem odd since in both cases the blind men followed, pursued, and shouted out for mercy.  It seems obvious that in both cases they wanted their sight and believed You were able or they wouldn’t have been so persistent.  Yet, You never asked the first men what they wanted, only if they believed You were able? That direct question made them answer what was truly in their hearts and “according to their faith” it was done for them.

The second men clearly believed You were able or they wouldn’t have kept calling out to You in spite of the crowd trying to stop them.  So, why did You ask what they wanted when it seems so clear?  I think it was a lesson for the unbelieving crowd…

These blind men had never been able to “see and believe” a miracle with their natural eyes as did the multitude who kept trying to silence them rather than believe they could be healed and try to help them get to You.  They “believed without seeing” in the natural and “saw and believed” with spiritual eyes of faith!  By asking what they wanted You to do for them, You gave them a choice to ask for what they really wanted and valued. They could have asked for wealth as well as their sight, but they didn’t. They knew if they could see with their natural eyes and follow You, everything else would take care of itself. They knew what was most important.

This is convicting, Lord.  We can deceive ourselves into thinking that just because we follow You, we are full of faith.  Yet in our hearts we don’t always “see and believe.”  We see and hope maybe? 

Matthew 13:16:  But blessed are your eyes because they see, and your ears because they hear.

Seeing is Believing (Part 1)

August 9, 2020  (Post #46)

(From Journal #4:  March 22, 2006)

Lord, I believe You’ve got a revelation for me to study and document:  “Seeing is Believing.”  I immediately thought of John 20:29:  Jesus said to him, “Thomas, because you have seen Me, you have believed. Blessed are those who have not seen and yet have believed.Jesus clearly said that those who would believe in Him “without seeing” evidence of miracles, etc., were blessed.  Help me to understand and grasp what you want me to “see” from this study.  I’m going to review as much scripture as I can about those who would “see and believe,” those who “saw and yet would not believe” and those who “believed without seeing.”  I’ll just start in Matthew with what Jesus said about our eyes…

“The eye is the lamp of the body. Therefore if your eye is good, your whole body will be full of light. But if your eye is bad, your body will be full of darkness. If therefore the light that is in you is darkness, how great is the darkness!”  (Matthew 6:22-23) 

This almost sounds like an oxymoron, Lord.  How can light be darkness?  I think You’re saying that if our spiritual eyes are blinded by evil, then our natural eyes cannot “see” the truth, only deception.  So often the “spiritual leaders” were the ones who were filled with darkness and pride and rejected what they saw.

Jesus marveled at the centurion because he saw with spiritual eyes that Jesus had the authority to heal his servant by just speaking; he didn’t need to see any “proof” with his natural eyes.  Matthew 8:8, 10:  The centurion answered and said, “Lord, I am not worthy that You should come under my roof.  But only speak a word, and my servant will be healed.”  When Jesus heard it, He marveled, and said to those who followed, “Assuredly, I say to you, I have not found such great faith, not even in Israel!…”

When Jesus told the paralytic that his sins were forgiven and to pick up his mat and go home, the religious scribes were offended and called Him a blasphemer rather than “seeing” the miracle!  However, the people saw and believed.  Matthew 9:8:  Now when the multitudes saw it, they marveled and glorified God, who had given such power to men.

Lord, how many times have I seen Your faithfulness, and yet later doubted and feared from unbelief?  Seeing should be believing…

Don’t Dig Up Your Seed!

July 19, 2020   (Post #44)

(From Journal #4:  February 28, 2006)

I watched a teaching this morning from Mark 4:26-29 about “The Parable of the Growing Seed” and what it shows us about faith, growing and maturing.  It really caused me to reflect on how many times I’ve sadly “dug up my own seeds” because I didn’t allow the process of “seed-time-harvest” to come to fruition.

There are things I want to accomplish that I believe are seeds You’ve planted in my spirit.  The problem comes during the “time phase” which causes me to wait for the results.  Rather than submit to the process and allow You to teach, mature and prepare me, too often I get tired of waiting and then try to force the “harvest.”  Every time I’ve gotten ahead of Your schedule, it’s been a disaster and makes the wait longer.  

It’s the same in difficult relationships.  We plant seeds of love and forgiveness, but then if “that person” doesn’t change fast enough, or the way we want them to, we try to force the change in them rather than focus on the changes needed in us.  That’s manipulation and it never works either.  Your mercy, love and long-suffering are so much greater than we understand.  How many relationships have failed because we “dug up the seed” rather than wait in faith and allow You to work?  I know I’ve done it, Lord.  Forgive me.  

When we do this, it affects others too.  Genesis 16 is a good example. Look at the mess Sarai (Sarah) caused by pushing Abram (Abraham) not to wait on the Lord’s promise that they would have children, but to father a child for her through her maid Hagar.  To this very day, the birth of Ishmael is the cause of conflict between nations.

Lord, help me surrender by faith every seed planted, trusting and resting in Your timing, that my harvests produce Your crops!

Mary 4:26-29:  And He said, “The kingdom of God is as if a man should scatter seed on the ground, and should sleep by night and rise by day, and the seed should sprout and grow, he himself does not know how. For the earth yields crops by itself: first the blade, then the head, after that the full grain in the head. But when the grain ripens, immediately he puts in the sickle, because the harvest has come.”

Psalm 130:5:  I wait for the Lord, my soul waits, and in His word I do hope.

God’s Tool Box is Full

June 20, 2020  (Post #42)

(From Journal #3:  February 12, 2006)

This morning I saw a pastor on TV who had been diagnosed with Hepatitis C.   Treatment options had been presented to him, and none without side effects and risks.  He believes in divine healing and found himself thinking his choices were:  “I either have to go through treatment OR trust God to heal me.” In his mind he felt that treatment would make him a “faith-failure.”  His very wise mother told him that medicines are for healing and the enemy is about death.  He realized that he had put You in a box by thinking he could only be divinely healed in a certain way, and saw that You give us many tools to use for healing, like medicines, supplements, diet, etc.  It wasn’t a question of medicine OR trusting God; it was treatment AND trusting God.  

Oh, can I relate!  I just went through this myself.  Last week I finished my 4th and last treatment of my 2nd round of immunotherapy.  I thought about how in Deuteronomy 30:19, You told Moses and the Israelites “… I have set before you life and death; choose life…” I chose to see this treatment path as a part of Your healing and took it in faith.  I also thought about Naaman and how his pride and stubbornness almost cost him his healing.  

2 Kings 5:1, 10-15:  Now Naaman was commander of the army of the king of Aram. He was a great man in the sight of his master and highly regarded, because through him the Lord had given victory to Aram. He was a valiant soldier, but he had leprosy.  Elisha sent a messenger to say to him, “Go, wash yourself seven times in the Jordan, and your flesh will be restored and you will be cleansed.” But Naaman went away angry and said, “I thought that he would surely come out to me and stand and call on the name of the Lord his God, wave his hand over the spot and cure me of my leprosy. Are not Abana and Pharpar, the rivers of Damascus, better than all the waters of Israel? Couldn’t I wash in them and be cleansed?” So he turned and went off in a rage.  Naaman’s servants went to him and said, “My father, if the prophet had told you to do some great thing, would you not have done it? How much more, then, when he tells you, ‘Wash and be cleansed’!” So he went down and dipped himself in the Jordan seven times, as the man of God had told him, and his flesh was restored and became clean like that of a young boy.  Then Naaman and all his attendants went back to the man of God. He stood before him and said, “Now I know that there is no God in all the world except in Israel…” 

Faith, Fear or Pride?

May 10, 2020   (Post #39)

(From Journal #3:  December 28, 2005)

Since the ER visit, things have been moving pretty fast. I had a colonoscopy and everything was perfect; thank You, Jesus!  I also saw the oncologist and had yet another CT scan.  But there’s still nothing showing as the cause for the pain in my side?  My lymph nodes haven’t grown back any, but they haven’t shrunk further either.  For this reason, the doctor suggests another round of Rituxan and he scheduled it for January.  This afternoon I see the surgeon again because it appears I have developed a hernia at the surgery sight, so now I have this to deal with too.  

I know I am healed.  I always felt in my spirit that one round of immunotherapy is all that would be needed. What is Your will for me, Lord?  I don’t want to refuse treatment to “prove that I have faith” to others that I believe I’m healed. That would be about me, my pride, and stubbornness. That would be foolish and dangerous and isn’t true faith.  I don’t want to take treatments I don’t really need and risk side effects. But I also don’t want to refuse them out of fear of side effects. Help me make this decision based on faith and wisdom, not from fear, unbelief, or pride.

A few days ago, Pastor Rob emailed to wish us a Merry Christmas.  That opened the door for me to seek his counsel about what to do.  He helped me so much to put the confusion to rest.  You are not the author of confusion. I feel peaceful and confident about treatments.  I’ll take them with the same faith I did before.  This is about my FAITH IN YOU, not faith in my faith…

1 Corinthians 14:33:  For God is not the author of confusion but of peace…”

Philippians 4:6-7:  Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication, with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to God; and the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus.

Psalm 32:8:  I will instruct you and teach you in the way you should go; I will guide you with My eye.