A Friend Died Today

What a shock to receive an early morning text from her daughter: “My mom passed away at 5:30 AM today.  Thank you for being her friend.”

Sue was a dear friend.  We exercised together and sometimes walked on the beach promenade.  Sadly, Sue was an atheist.  I shared my faith with her numerous times.  When I shared my testimony, she responded, “That was a good story, but I still don’t believe in God.”

She was unwell for the past two years, but that didn’t stop her from exercising. Unfortunately, doctors could not give her a diagnosis.  One day she said, “Please pray for me.”

“Oh?  And WHO would you like me to pray to?”

She chuckled.  “Pray to whomever you want.”

I prayed.  In fact, a few times I gathered our other Christian friends around her and we’d pray for her.  She was always grateful.  Then I noticed a few months ago that she was visibly losing weight.  Then COVID-19 happened and we all went into quarantine.  A few days into it, she texted, “I’ve been diagnosed with stage 3 or 4 Lymphoma.  I’m scared.”

I called her immediately, but she was too weak to talk.  So I texted, “Sue,  I know you have always held to your belief in atheism. But atheism is not a source of peace, nor will it be in the next life. I am praying for your healing. But most of all I am praying that God will touch your heart so you will never again doubt His love and healing power.  I love you dear friend!”

A few days later she texted that she was in the hospital with pneumonia.

I texted again, “I found a verse in the Bible for you!  Joel 2:32 says: “Whosoever shall call on the name of the Lord shall be delivered.” Sue, I think you need to be delivered.  Don’t you? I also believe the last thing you want to do is to call on the name of the Lord. But you have nothing to lose, Sue, and everything to gain! Simply call on the name “Jesus.” Call on His name over and over again and watch what He will do for you.”

She didn’t respond and after a few days she returned home feeling stronger.   Sue’s name was on my list to call this morning.  Then I received her daughter’s text.

“Father in heaven,  I am believing that in Sue’s final hours, she DID call on the name, JESUS.  We placed her in Your hands and we are trusting that we will see her again someday in heaven.  So I will praise You and thank You that You are a great and loving God. In the precious name of Jesus, the name above ALL names I pray, Amen.”

[This life is temporary. This life is short.  When this life is over, our bodies will die and become empty shells, but our souls will continue to live forever.  Where will the “real you” live?  Will you live for all eternity separated from God?  Or will you spend eternity in the presence of God in heaven?   Learn more so you can make your most important decision:   http://www.godlife.com/gospel/  and  http://www.godlife.com/en/about-christianity

[To leave a comment or prayer request, simply click on the TITLE of this post and scroll to the bottom.]

Posted in Atheism, ILLNESS or HOSPITAL | Tagged , , , , , | 2 Comments

Alone With 18 Male Prisoners

A memorable experience from my years doing jail ministry:

When it comes to incarcerated adults, I believe women should mentor women and men should mentor men. One day that changed for me. The chaplain was short of male facilitators and needed me in the men’s unit.

I told him I’d be uncomfortable and would rather not.  He explained the deputies would be right outside and would keep an eye on me through the window in the door.  As long as I sit next to the red emergency button on the wall, I should have no problem.

Breathing a prayer, I fearfully entered the tiny room where 18 men were already seated.  I took the only chair available, in the back of the room.  Once seated I noticed the red emergency button was on the opposite side of the room!

Rather than panic, I decided to act tough and fearless. I lowered my voice and tried to speak with authority. I asked a few questions and as they responded I studied their faces.   Why, they were simply needy men who were seeking God!

It was going well until one man became angry and wanted to argue! The other men were ready to pounce on him to protect me.  I felt safe and grateful.  Sure enough, the deputies were watching. Within seconds the door opened and two deputies physically removed the troublemaker. The rest of our time was sweet and precious.

That was the first of many opportunities to minister to men who simply wanted to know God’s love and forgiveness. Once they were willing to turn from their sin and surrender their lives to Jesus, they would experience peace and joy. As I continued to meet with them for weeks—and some for months, I could see the transformation was lasting. What a privilege!

  • The Lord stands at your right hand to protect you.    Psalm 110:5a  NLT
  • This is good, and pleases God our Savior, who wants all people to be saved and to come to a knowledge of the truth.    1 Timothy 2:3-4

Addendum:  Our local jail rules have since changed:   Men may only mentor men. Women may only mentor women.  This is good!

  • SONG: ONE BUSINESS IN LIFEby Kathleen
  • [This life is temporary. This life is short.  When this life is over, our bodies will die and become empty shells, but our souls will continue to live forever.  Where will the “real you” live?  Will you live for all eternity separated from God?  Or will you spend eternity in the presence of God in heaven?   Learn more so you can make your most important decision:   http://www.godlife.com/gospel/  and  http://www.godlife.com/en/about-christianity

    [To leave a comment or prayer request, simply click on the TITLE of this post and scroll to the bottom.]

 

 

Posted in DOCTRINE, JAIL & COUNTY JUVENILE FACILITY, PRAYER WORKS | Tagged , , , , , | 6 Comments

Why College Students Lose Their Faith

Our local community college changed their rules.  Those people who wished to come onto the campus to give away Bibles and talk to students about God,  were now required to be students!  I decided to enroll in an English Literature class.

The required reading involved short stories. I noticed that many of the stories portrayed Bible believing Christians in a negative light. Following our reading, we’d listen to the instructor lecture us on the foolishness and ignorance of people who actually believe in God.

One day after class I went to him privately. I told him it was becoming obvious to me that he had an apparent agenda, and that was to undermine the faith of his students.  He immediately became nervous, defensive and denied the allegation. He assured me he had no such intention.

Yet after our meeting, the reading assignments changed. The subject matter improved. Never again did he speak disparagingly about Christians.  That is, as long as I was in his class.

Unfortunately, I believe many young people today are too intimidated to speak up. But not all!  I remember a high school senior who did the same thing.  She was president of the senior class and exuded confidence and poise.  She stood up in class, spoke loudly so all could hear, and said she could no longer remain in a class where her faith was insulted and threatened, and walked out. Her action affected change.

Have you experienced a similar situation? How did you handle it?

  • Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit. Rather, in humility value others above yourselves,  not looking to your own interests but each of you to the interests of the others.   Philippians 2:3-4
  • Speak up for those who cannot speak for themselves, for the rights of all who are destitute.     Proverbs 31:8
  • SONG: GOD IS READY –  Words & Music by Kathleen, Robin poem by Elizabeth Cheney, circa 1931
[This life is temporary. This life is short.  When this life is over, our bodies will die and become empty shells, but our souls will continue to live forever.  Where will the “real you” live?  Will you live for all eternity separated from God?  Or will you spend eternity in the presence of God in heaven?   Learn more so you can make your most important decision:   http://www.godlife.com/gospel/  and  http://www.godlife.com/en/about-christianity

[To leave a comment or prayer request, simply click on the TITLE of this post and scroll to the bottom.]

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Praying With a Muslim

We accompanied our Muslim friends to an afternoon event. When it was 4 PM Ameena said it was time for prayer.  She wanted to excuse herself to another location to pray.

There were other Muslims attending, so Ameena mentioned to them that it was 4 PM and there would be prayer at the other location.  They were not interested.

She said to me, “I get so disappointed. Sometimes I think I’m the only one who prays.”

I said, “Ameena, I pray.

“But you’re a Christian and it’s not the same.  Well, I suppose I’ll go pray alone.”

“May I pray with you?”

“What?  You want to pray with me?

“Yes. I’d like to.”

She paused,  “Hmm. Okay. Come on! Let’s go pray.”

I followed her and watched her do her ceremonial washing. She then began to pray. When she would stand, I’d stand. When she’d kneel, I’d kneel. When she’d bow down, I’d bow down.  She prayed aloud in Arabic while I prayed quietly in the Spirit.

A few minutes later she said, “Okay. We’re done. Now we can join the others.”                       I said, “Ameena, would you mind if I sang a song?  It’s a short song, but it’s also a prayer.” “You want to sing a prayer? Sure! Go ahead and sing.”

I sang, “I love You Lord, and I lift my voice to worship You, oh my soul rejoice.
Take joy my King in what You hear. May it be a sweet, sweet sound in Your ear.”

She smiled, “That was nice.”

A few weeks later we saw Ameena and her husband at a barbecue.  She asked if we’d come and sit with them.  She said, “I want to talk to you about your religion.”

  • Whatever you do, work at it with all your heart, as working for the Lord, not for human masters.    Colossians 3:23
  • Finally, brothers and sisters, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is excellent or praiseworthy—think about such things.    Philippians 4:8
  • SONG:   I Love You, Lord by Petra:   https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=x1IDrMj9CBQ
[This life is temporary. This life is short.  When this life is over, our bodies will die and become empty shells, but our souls will continue to live forever.  Where will the “real you” live?  Will you live for all eternity separated from God?  Or will you spend eternity in the presence of God in heaven?   Learn more so you can make your most important decision:   http://www.godlife.com/gospel/  and  http://www.godlife.com/en/about-christianity

[To leave a comment or prayer request, simply click on the TITLE of this post and scroll to the bottom.]

 

Posted in DOCTRINE, Other Religions, PEOPLE, PRAYER WORKS | Tagged , , , , , , , , , | 11 Comments

Sunday Morning Church via Laptop?

It was Sunday morning and we were vacationing with our son’s family.  He had done an online search for a good Bible-centered church and found one 45-minutes away.

But wait.  Did we want to drive 45 minutes? We soon discovered that said church could be watched LIVE via the internet!  So that’s what we did!  We attended church right in our rental house with the laptop on the center of the dining table.

The worship was excellent—even the grandkids were singing along to the familiar lyrics!

The Calvary Chapel pastor was doing an in-depth study on the book of Daniel.  It was a powerful message we could all apply to our lives.

When the service ended we discovered over 1400 people had watched the same service LIVE, worldwide! Demographics showed the highest concentration of viewers were in the US, the Caribbean and Western Europe. We read the comments and questions from viewers, and the responses from church-appointed moderators!  How interesting was that!

“Thank You, God, for modern technology that takes Your Word worldwide!”

 

 

Posted in HERE & THERE, PEOPLE, RAISING KIDS, TRAVELING | Tagged , , , , , , | 4 Comments

The Shaman

It was a short flight and I found myself seated next to a lovely woman traveling to a Shamanic Retreat where she would teach a workshop on shamanism.

I silently prayed,  “Oh Lord, I believe You arranged for me to sit next to her. But I really wish You hadn’t.  I don’t feel like sharing Jesus with her. I don’t think she’d be open. Besides I’m getting sleepy.”  I dosed off briefly and then forced myself to wake up because I knew God had put her next to me for a reason.

“So tell me about shamanism!  I’ve never met a shaman!”

She explained that there are many paths to truth, that shamanism is a way of life and a means to connect with nature and all of creation.  I learned shamanism is very spiritual, but without a belief in a personal god.  She said the shamanic culture descended from both northern Asia and from Native American people. Personal mystical experience forms the basis of the shaman’s spiritual knowledge such as healing, protecting through magic, many ceremonies and offering spiritual guidance.  Shamanism was clearly the focus of her life. 

I noticed she failed to mention that shamanism involves a practitioner reaching altered states of consciousness to interact with a spirit world and then channeling these transcendental energies into this world.

After listening at length, I explained that I too am spiritual.  In fact, I’d just left a Global Media Outreach conference. I explained that people worldwide, even in the most remote jungles can now learn about the God of the Bible on their mobile phones.  Yes, mobile phones!  They may not have electricity, but they have cell phones!

I explained that tribal bush people are delivered from their fears of a witch doctor’s curse.  Others are delivered from their fears of evil spirits whom they believe come out after dark, forcing them to stay indoors for safety.  When these people begin to trust Jesus, their fears disappear and they are filled with joy and peace.  She listened with interest. I shared a gospel tract with her entitled, Would You Like to Know God Personally?  She was reading it when we landed.

Thank You, Lord,  for waking me up to talk to that precious woman.  I’m trusting that she will read the entire tract. Cause her to think about what she learned about Jesus. Save her in Jesus’ name, Amen.

  • Learn more about Global Media Outreach:  www.godlife.com or https://www.godlife.com/en/look-to-jesus
  • Watch in real-time, people hearing the gospel message: http://greatcommission2020.com/map
  • The gospel booklet I shared with her:    https://www.cru.org/how-to-know-god/would-you-like-to-know-god-personally.html
  • We are therefore Christ’s ambassadors, as though God were making his appeal through us.      2 Corinthians 5:20a  NIV
  • SONG: MY FRIENDWords by D. J. Higgins; Music by Kathleen
[This life is temporary. This life is short.  When this life is over, our bodies will die and become empty shells, but our souls will continue to live forever.  Where will the “real you” live?  Will you live for all eternity separated from God?  Or will you spend eternity in the presence of God in heaven?   Learn more so you can make your most important decision:   http://www.godlife.com/gospel/  and  http://www.godlife.com/en/about-christianity

[To leave a comment or prayer request, simply click on the TITLE of this post and scroll to the bottom.]

Posted in GLOBAL MEDIA OUTREACH, PEOPLE, TRAVELING | Tagged , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Frustration and Endearment

As an online missionary for Global Media Outreach, I have been discipling Maria, for two years.  She’s 21 and lives in Southeast Asia.  Maria is a great source of frustration to me–but also a source of endearment.

Maria emails often–too often!  She’s up and she’s down. She is a follower of Jesus and then she’s an atheist.  She’s bisexual and then she’s straight.  She’s suicidal and then she wants to live.  She hates people and then she loves them.  She’s addicted to drugs and alcohol and then… well no, I believe she’s still addicted.

Five days ago she had sworn to follow her weed-smoking friends in atheism. She told me she was finished with me and with God—forever!  I waited three days and then wrote a short note encouraging her with God’s Word, with His love and with my belief in her.

She responded, “I will do what you say.  Thank you.  You always give light to my mind and to my darkest thoughts and darkest thinking.  You give me hope to live life full even if I want to give up on my life and God.  Please guide me always. I need you, to help me know more about God and to be closer again to Him.  Thank you Kathleen!”

My eyes brimmed with tears.  I will continue to work with this frustrating, yet precious and needy friend. I will continue to pray for her and encourage her with God’s Word.  Please take a moment and pray for Maria.  Pray also for me, that I will give wise and godly counsel and help her get established in a local community of Christians.

[This life is temporary. This life is short.  When this life is over, our bodies will die and become empty shells, but our souls will continue to live forever.  Where will the “real you” live?  Will you live for all eternity separated from God?  Or will you spend eternity in the presence of God in heaven?   Learn more so you can make your most important decision:   http://www.godlife.com/gospel/  and  http://www.godlife.com/en/about-christianity

[To leave a comment or prayer request, simply click on the TITLE of this post and scroll to the bottom.]

Posted in GLOBAL MEDIA OUTREACH, PEOPLE, PRAYER WORKS | Tagged , , , , , , , , , | 4 Comments

COVID-19 Fears

This month marks 11 years that I’ve been an online missionary with Global Media Outreach.  What an privilege and a blessing, reaching people throughout the world as they go online seeking answers to life’s challenges. Many of them want to know how they can have their sins forgiven; how they might know if they’re going to heaven.

Yet in March our letters began to change.  Many now write expressing their fears of contracting the Coronavirus.  They are asking if this is the end of the world.  It seems the entire world is living from day to day, wondering what tomorrow will bring to their health.  Many people worldwide are out of jobs, fearing for their future. Those who don’t know Jesus don’t know where they will go after they die.  Many are eager to receive Christ and I will take them through the steps.  [See Would You Like to Know God Personally? at the bottom of this page.]

I like to emphasize the most important thing in this life is to KNOW Jesus, to KNOW He has forgiven our sins, to KNOW we no longer need to be controlled by sin, to KNOW our final destination is with Him in heaven. How sad for those who do not have this assurance.

The most important thing I can tell them, after they have received Christ, is to trust God, knowing they are now in His hands.  I especially encourage them to share this good news with others, so their loved ones may also experience this same blessed hope.  I am praying that those people who have not yet accepted Jesus as their Savior will do so before He returns.

I explain to some that I personally believe we are living at the end of this age.  People have said this for centuries, but there were certain prophecies that needed to be fulfilled first.  One such prophecy:  the Jewish people were to be regathered to their homeland of Israel for a second time.  That didn’t happen until 1948.  This second return was to be from every nation where they had been dispersed (Jeremiah 16:14–15; 23:7–8; 29:14; 31:7–8), not just Babylon. Over the past 120 years or so, more than 3.5 million Jews have immigrated to the Land of Israel from all over the world—from the north, south, east, and west—in literal fulfillment of God’s promises (Isaiah 43:5–6).  On May 14, 1948,  the State of Israel was established–the first Jewish state in 2,000 years.

The Bible tells us in Matthew 24 there will be pestilences, disease and earthquakes–it does seem the earthquakes are stronger and closer together these days.  We’re also told that nation will rise against nation and there will be wars and famines.  This is our world today.

I believe the next thing to happen is the rapture of the church.  The church is not a building.  According to the Bible, the church is the PEOPLE who follow Jesus.  WE are the church.  So the rapture of the church is when the followers of Jesus are caught up together in the clouds, in the twinkling of an eye, to meet the Lord.

The rapture is described in 1 Thessalonians 4:13-18:  “Brothers and sisters, we do not want you to be uninformed about those who sleep in death, so that you do not grieve like the rest of mankind, who have no hope.  For we believe that Jesus died and rose again, and so we believe that God will bring with Jesus those who have fallen asleep in him.  According to the Lord’s word, we tell you that we who are still alive, who are left until the coming of the Lord, will certainly not precede those who have fallen asleep.  For the Lord himself will come down from heaven, with a loud command, with the voice of the archangel and with the trumpet call of God, and the dead in Christ will rise first.  After that, we who are still alive and are left will be caught up together with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air. And so we will be with the Lord forever.  Therefore encourage one another with these words.”

Also in Matthew 24:36-41  “But about that day or hour no one knows…  As it was in the days of Noah, so it will be at the coming of the Son of Man.  For in the days before the flood, people were eating and drinking, marrying and giving in marriage, up to the day Noah entered the ark;  and they knew nothing about what would happen until the flood came and took them all away. That is how it will be at the coming of the Son of Man.  Two men will be in the field; one will be taken and the other left.  Two women will be grinding with a hand mill; one will be taken and the other left.”

Then there is 2 Timothy 3:1-5  “But mark this:  There will be terrible times in the last days.  People will be lovers of themselves, lovers of money, boastful, proud, abusive, disobedient to their parents, ungrateful, unholy, without love, unforgiving, slanderous, without self-control, brutal, not lovers of the good,  treacherous, rash, conceited, lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God—  having a form of godliness but denying its power. Have nothing to do with such people.”

The Lord gave me a song last year – directly from Scripture – that seems to have been written for such a time as this:   DO NOT BE ANXIOUS

  • Would You Like to Know God Personally?  https://www.cru.org/us/en/how-to-know-god/would-you-like-to-know-god-personally.html
  • Learn more about Global Media Outreach:  https://www.globalmediaoutreach.com/impact  and here:  https://www.globalmediaoutreach.com/about
  • More questions?  www.gotquestions.org
[This life is temporary. This life is short.  When this life is over, our bodies will die and become empty shells, but our souls will continue to live forever.  Where will the “real you” live?  Will you live for all eternity separated from God?  Or will you spend eternity in the presence of God in heaven?   Learn more so you can make your most important decision:   http://www.godlife.com/gospel/  and  http://www.godlife.com/en/about-christianity

[To leave a comment or prayer request, simply click on the TITLE of this post and scroll to the bottom.]

Posted in DOCTRINE, GLOBAL MEDIA OUTREACH | Tagged , , , , , , | 4 Comments

Traveling Missionaries

We were traveling in Eastern Europe as river cruise missionaries. Well actually, I was the missionary, while my husband who still is not YET a believer, was kind enough to accompany me.  My plan was to reach out to lost and lonely people with the good news of Jesus.

I was handing out Jesus booklets in the Bulgarian language when I ran out!  We were in a walking mall near a major university with crowds of students moving around us. I hated to miss the opportunity to reach these young people for Jesus, so I found a bench and sat down.

Opening my purse, I pulled out a piece of typing paper, a pen and my fold-up scissors. I began writing two websites over and over and up and down the paper in three rows. One was www.everystudent.com and the other was www.whoisJesus-really.com  (both are also offered in Bulgarian).

I then cut out the little pieces of paper with the two websites on them, put them in my big pocket and we started walking.  I’d simply approach someone with a smile and say, “Excuse me, do you speak English?  I’m from America and I have two websites to share with you—they’re about Jesus. I think you’ll like them.”

Most people I approached would smile back, look at the little piece of paper, tell me they’d check it out, thank me and put it in their pocket. They were friendly. They seemed appreciative. There was only one man who said he did not believe in such things and wanted to argue.  I quickly wished him a good day and moved on.

It wasn’t long before all my little papers were gone, so it was time for us to return to our ship.

I praised God that I was able to get about 50 pieces of paper out of one piece of typing paper. Fifty young people over and above those who received my booklets had an opportunity to come to a saving knowledge of Jesus Christ!  How exciting is that!

What a thrill for me to reach so many! Even my dear husband was helpful. At one point he said, “See that guy over there? He looks kind of needy—why don’t you give him one.”

“Thank You Lord, for giving me favor and joy as I serve You—in just a simple way.”

  •  Remember this: Whoever turns a sinner from the error of their way will save them from death and cover over a multitude of sins.     James 5:20
  •  Whoever believes and is baptized will be saved, but whoever does not believe will be condemned.     Mark 16:16
  • For more information on Global Media Outreach: www.godlife.com  and www.globalmediaoutreach.com
  • SONG:  ONLY ONE LIFELyrics by C.T. Studd, circa 1900; Music by Kathleen  
[This life is temporary. This life is short.  When this life is over, our bodies will die and become empty shells, but our souls will continue to live forever.  Where will the “real you” live?  Will you live for all eternity separated from God?  Or will you spend eternity in the presence of God in heaven?   Learn more so you can make your most important decision:   http://www.godlife.com/gospel/  and  http://www.godlife.com/en/about-christianity

[To leave a comment or prayer request, simply click on the TITLE of this post and scroll to the bottom.]

Posted in COLLEGE CAMPUS, DOCTRINE, TRAVELING | Tagged , , , , , , , , , | 8 Comments

How Can I Make Friends?

As an online missionary for Global Media Outreach, I’ve been mentoring Susan in the Middle East, for about three years.  She’s now a university freshman.  She wrote, “I am shy and handicapped in making friendships. How exactly can I make friends?”

I prayerfully responded, “Jesus wants us to love one another. Reaching out in friendship is a good beginning.  If we want friends, we must be friendly.

“Begin by standing straight and tall, don’t slouch. Smile and be confident.  Remember that you now have the Holy Spirit living in you. Our confidence comes from God.

“Smile. Look people in the eye when you talk.  Sometimes a person will glance away when you look at them. Don’t be afraid of that. Keep smiling.  That person is either very shy, or considers you a threat for some reason.  Most of the time I believe it’s because they are shy.

“Often it’s appropriate to offer a handshake. Your handshake should be firm, but not tight.  Smile.  Ask people about themselves, then listen with interest. Be truly interested in them. If you see a need, offer to help–and then follow through with a smile.”

A few days later Susan wrote, “I found a chance to practice what you taught me. It works!!!!!  I started talking to a girl on the bus by asking her about herself.  We were talking the whole time til she got off.  This is progress! I’m so happy. I remembered to smile and I’m still smiling. Thank you!”

  • A new command I give you: Love one another.  As I have loved you, so you must love one another.  By this everyone will know that you are my disciples, if you love one another.   John 13:34-35
  • And over all these virtues put on love, which binds them all together in perfect unity. Colossians 3:14
  • Learn more more about the ministry of Global Media Outreach: http://godlife.com/
  • SONG:  I LOVE THE LORDBy Kathleen 

____________

[This life is temporary. This life is short.  When this life is over, our bodies will die and become empty shells, but our souls will continue to live forever.  Where will the “real you” live?  Will you live for all eternity separated from God?  Or will you spend eternity in the presence of God in heaven?   Learn more so you can make your most important decision:   http://www.godlife.com/gospel/  and  http://www.godlife.com/en/about-christianity

[To leave a comment or prayer request, simply click on the TITLE of this post and scroll to the bottom.]

 

 

Posted in COLLEGE CAMPUS, DOCTRINE, GLOBAL MEDIA OUTREACH, Love & Romance, PEOPLE | Tagged , , , , , , , , , | 7 Comments