How are you honoring your body?

Mama's flowers

Joseph said to his brothers, “I am about to die, but God will surely take care of you and bring you up from this land to the land which He promised on oath to Abraham, to Isaac and to Jacob.” Then Joseph made the sons of Israel swear, saying, “God will surely take care of you, and you shall carry my bones up from here. Genesis 50:24-25

We buried Mama yesterday. She traveled from The Woodlands near Houston, Texas to Tulsa, Oklahoma and was buried with Daddy. Most of the family traveled from Texas. I traveled from California.

I considered not going. I rationalized that she wasn’t there, just her body.

… absent from the body and to be at home with the Lord. 2 Corinthians 5:8

I prayed for wisdom. Joseph came to mind, and I read Genesis 50.

Mary’s anointing the feet of Jesus with the costly perfume of nard and Jesus’ response came to mind.

Jesus said, “Let her alone, so that she may keep it for the day of My burial. John 12:7

The body is important to God. In the story of creation, “God said,” and the light was created, the waters were separated, and vegetation sprouted.

But God “formed” and “breathed into” man.

Then the Lord God formed man of dust from the ground, and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life; and man became a living being. Genesis 2:7

God “fashioned” the woman.

The Lord God fashioned into a woman the rib which He had taken from the man, and brought her to the man. Genesis 2:22

There’s something special about the body, even when the spirit has left it. The body is God’s “poem,” His cherished handiwork. We honor the body in many ways. We decorate the body with clothes and jewels. We workout to shape it into today’s idea of beauty, and we use makeup to paint it.

The honor I was not giving to the body, and particularly to Mama’s body, was that the Holy Spirit had considered her body His temple. Yes, I had acknowledged that many times … read the Scripture and interpreted it to mean that we should take care of our bodies and avoid joining them in immorality.

Or do you not know that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit who is in you, whom you have from God, and that you are not your own? 1 Corinthians 6:19

When God formed and fashioned the bodies of man and woman, He breathed His life into these temples that would house the Holy Spirit. Our God of artistry and love created them in His image, something to honor and cherish.

The Holy Spirit’s temple! Not St. Peter’s Basilica. Not Cathedral Notre Dame. The Christian’s body.

For the Lord Himself will descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel and with the trumpet of God, and the dead in Christ will rise first. Then we who are alive and remain will be caught up together with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air, and so we shall always be with the Lord. 1 Thessalonians 4:16-17

Mama’s spirit is in heaven now, and her body is in the earth waiting for the trumpet of God to sound. I know that her new body will reflect God’s artistry and love.

My Prayer

Father, thank You for creating our bodies as temples of the Holy Spirit. Thank You for giving significance to every part of our lives. You took such care in creating bodies with the senses that could give pleasure and richness to this earthly life. Thank You for Your gentle lessons and guidance. I am glad that You have given honor to our earthly bodies and that You have new bodies for us.

How are you honoring your body?

Lord, I don’t know what to pray!

In the same way the Spirit also helps our weakness; for we do not know how to pray as we should, but the Spirit Himself intercedes for us with groanings too deep for words; and He who searches the hearts knows what the mind of the Spirit is, because He intercedes for the saints according to the will of God. And we know that God causes all things to work together for good to those who love God, to those who are called according to His purpose. Romans 8:26-28

Breast cancer, fall, cracked head, staples, bleeding in the brain, pneumonia, bowel obstruction … this week!

God! What more can my mother take?

I don’t know what to pray. Take her?

I don’t think she wants me to pray for her healing. She wants to be with Daddy.

She’s tired, Lord.

STOP THIS TORTURE!! That’s what I’m thinking. It seems irreverant. But, Father, that is my cry. But do I dare?

I don’t know what to pray.

Wisdom, Father. Your perfect wisdom. That’s my prayer.

Thank You.

Take her, if that’s Your will. But, nevertheless, please, relieve her suffering.

Relieve my brother’s suffering, my family’s suffering.

God, have mercy!

Thank You that the Spirit is praying for us and interceding for us.

We don’t know what to pray.

My prayer

Father, there are so many people who feel like they are being tortured. Please lift them up. Let them feel Your precious presence in their lives. Oh Holy Spirit, thank You for praying for us when we don’t know what to pray. You sustain us when we feel the bottom falling out from us. Oh, Lord my God, Holy are You. I adore You. You will keep my mother in Your presence forevermore.

Are you truly free?

Now if the ministry that brought death, which was engraved in letters on stone, came with glory, so that the Israelites could not look steadily at the face of Moses because of its glory, transitory though it was, will not the ministry of the Spirit be even more glorious? 2 Corinthians 3:7-8

The second time Moses came down from Mount Sinai with the Ten Commandments, his face shined because he had spoken with God.

The Israelites now had the Law. James wrote that if one commandment was broken, the entire Law was broken. God gave the Israelites a way to cover their sins–the sin offering, an offering of unblemished bulls, lambs, goats, doves, or pigeons. There was also a provision if the Israelite could not even afford a pigeon.

Jesus was the only man who was able to keep the entire Law. Jesus became our unblemished sacrifice. This Son of Man who knew no sin was beaten and nailed to a cross, and the sins of generations past, present, and future were placed upon Him. Jesus paid the price of the world’s sins.

Even to this day when Moses is read, a veil covers their hearts. But whenever anyone turns to the Lord, the veil is taken away. Now the Lord is the Spirit, and where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is freedom. And we all, who with unveiled faces contemplate the Lord’s glory, are being transformed into his image with ever-increasing glory, which comes from the Lord, who is the Spirit. 2 Corinthians 3:15-18

The veil hid the glory of God. A veil hung between the Holy Place and the Holy of Holies in the temple. When Jesus released His Spirit and died, the veil ripped in two from top to bottom, and believers gained access to the Holy of Holies, gained direct access to God.

When Jesus recruited followers, He said, “Follow me; learn of me.” Jesus told the rich young ruler to go and sell all that he had, give the money to the poor, and follow Him.

In Jesus, there is freedom. Freedom from being a slave to sin. Freedom to approach God in the most intimate manner possible. Freedom to meditate on the Lord’s glory. Freedom to be transformed into His image. Freedom to be what God formed you to be … His poem.

Are you truly free?

My prayer for you

Glorious Father, thank You for giving us freedom in Jesus. It is amazing that You, Creator of the Universe, have given us direct access to You. You have given Your Son, Jesus, as the Perfect Sacrifice to pay the price for our sins, all we need to do is turn to Jesus and follow Him. Thank You, Father, for giving us complete freedom in Jesus.

 

 

Unwrapping Lazarus, a review

Unwrapping Lazarus: Freeing the Supernatural in Your Life

Dr. Pete Carter’s job description is “to bring hope wherever I am.” Unwrapping Lazarus: Freeing the Supernatural in Your Life beckons the reader to unwrap the bindings of traditions and learned religion in order to open our lives to the great and precious promises and possibilities that God has for His children–to live in freedom to experience intimacy with God.

“… let us understand that the resources of the Kingdom of heaven are at our disposal–and that our Father in heaven is more than happy for us to use them. … It is time to heal the sick, set people free, raise the dead and enjoy the goodness and greatness of our Father.”

Carter asserts that the church has shifted its focus from Jesus and the Kingdom of heaven to the sin of its people.  This shift has the church doing the work of the Holy Spirit, convicting the world of sin.

“The normal Christian life is one filled with the Spirit and experiencing miracles.”

Healings and miracles follow Dr. Carter’s ministry at North Kent Community Church in the United Kingdom. The church has established a School of Supernatural Ministry.

As a physician, Dr. Carter has seen his patients healed through his medical practice and through the miraculous work of God.

I know that the Lord heals and works miracles today. The Lord miraculously healed me of fibromyalgia and chronic fatigue syndrome on November 21, 2010, confirmed by my doctor. There is no cure for fibromyalgia. I had no hope; medicine was not working.

Before I was healed, the Lord took me on a two-year journey to unwrap my bindings of taught religion and traditional thinking, so that I could be free to experience God’s healing touch. Through Dr. Carter’s words, I relived that journey. Thank you, Dr. Carter for making that so real.

Throughout the book, Dr. Carter speaks of the freedom that the Christian can experience if she will only recognize and remove the limitations that she has placed upon God.

However, Dr. Carter writes that he knows that the reader may not agree with all that he writes, and he urges the reader to pray, study the Bible and think through what he has written, in other words be good Bereans. Thank you, Dr. Carter for this teaching.

The focus of the book shifts from miracles and healings to “falling over, laughing, crying, much joy, people so intoxicated by the Holy Spirit that they found themselves incapable of walking.”

Many such strange things happened in our church. We had to open our minds to the new things that God was doing. … I recall one of our members “swimming” across the floor, breaststroke style if I remember rightly. When asked afterward what he had been doing, he said that the Lord had invited him to swim in the river of God.

Dr. Carter writes of hosting a team from the church where the Toronto Blessing started. “It was holy chaos.”

The Bible says

For God is not a God of disorder but of peace—as in all the congregations of the Lord’s people. 1 Corinthians 14:33

Dr. Carter has written a hope-filled book that has practical teaching for today. However, gold dust, floating feathers, and “holy chaos” have been sprinkled throughout some of its chapters.

My response: Unwrap the bindings that limit God, but wrap your mind in the Word of God, so that you are free for God to work in your life.

 I received a complimentary copy of this book from the publisher, Chosen Books, a division of Baker Publishing Group, in exchange for my honest review.

My prayer for you

Father, thank You for Dr. Carter and his passion for spreading hope to Your children. Fill him with Your perfect wisdom and truth. Fill us all with Your wisdom and truth as we unwrap the bindings of our thinking, consume Your Word, and experience the freedom that You have for us. We love you, Lord.