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February Newsletter-Stepping Into Creation

Posted on by Laura Posted in Newsletters | Leave a comment

We just celebrated our 25th anniversary. We started the radio broadcast on January 8, 1990. We ask you to join with us in our prayer of thanksgiving for all those years, and even more importantly, for all the hours of the relationships this ministry has experienced with its listeners. Those kinds of relationships can only be found in the ‘oneness’ of God. And while we may not know each other completely, we know each other by that Spirit that lives within us all. That’s what has united this radio station and you our listeners; a common heart for worship and praise to our common Father, Son and Spirit. You are welcome to join with us in our prayer and our anticipation of the future of the Gospel Message over FM 104.5:

Father, we thank you for stepping into your creation. Thank you for turning over every rock to search us out.
2-15-large_praying_handsThank you for knowing how earth smelled, knowing how it tastes, and knowing many times how it can hurt.
Thank you for knowing the pain of a scuffed knee.
Thank you for understanding how it feels to be rejected and betrayed, having been rejected by your closest, your own.
Thank you for having felt what it’s like to be misunderstood, to be falsely accused, and to know the pain of a broken heart.
Thank you for forgiving so much and loving so much more. Thank you for knowing the many reasons for our frustrations having experienced those moments yourself.
Thank you God for not looking at the many who would not accept your Grace and instead providing a Way for any who would say Yes.
You Lord have been tempted in all things just as we are and have been untouched by each. Thank you for stepping into our world and holding on to us, while at the same time, we are not very pleasant people to hold on to.
Father, we are so thankful that you cared enough to experience the world’s system and know exactly, not only, how we feel but knowing also how to heal us, that you loved us enough to do more than help us, but also deliver us.
Thank you for whispering in our ear when we fear. Thank You for meeting with us in those things we fear the most and make that a holy place because we met you there.
Thank you Father for not leaving us the way you found us.
Thank you for being abused, damaged and shunned on our behalf.
Father I pray that Your Kingdom live through us to others.

We recognize Your Peace, which sets us free to care, be brave, think of others and gives us the ability to love.
It’s amazing to us that You permit us to know You, and more amazing that You know us and accept us in Your most unusual way.
Father, thank You for permission to feel terrible sometimes and yet, because we truly believe, You help us through those feelings.
Thank you for not running away from your creation in the Garden of Eden but ran toward your creation. You did not give up on us. Actually, choosing to do something about us rather than lose us.
Thank you for your words of encouragement set in Your letter for us.
Thank you God for patiently waiting for us to change. Waiting for us to accept Your Love.
Thank you God for hearing us pray.
What a purposed and unchanging God you are.2-15-prayhands copy

Now Father, by your Spirit and because of your Son, move in us. We permit you to walk through our lives and disturb our worldly comfort and bring real Comfort, Real Peace. We pray that Your Words change our Invironment, our hearts, so that we might be able to stand against what comes against us to destroy the great price you have paid to simply be with us.
We are so grateful for the time, the blessings of having found each other through this thing we call WBVN. Amen.

We came in January 1990 knowing our listeners were special because of what they have inside, what’s been placed within you: the Spirit of Christ. That is a common genealogy with us all. And, I know this is hard to believe, but God thinks you’re special, just as you are. He died for the opportunity to have a caring relationship with you, truly an amazing grace! His promise is to fill the earth with Himself, that every knee shall bow and every tongue confess that He is. It’s been fun and meaningful to have that happen for all of us for the past 25 years. Let’s do it again!2-15-Pray3

January Newsletter-John Galt

Posted on by Laura Posted in Newsletters | Leave a comment

“All that which is proper to the life of a rational being is the good; all that which destroys it is the evil… If existence on earth is your goal, you must choose your actions and values by the standard of that which is proper to man…  Since life requires a specific course of action, any other course will destroy it… Happiness is the successful state of life, pain is an agent of death.  But neither life nor happiness can be achieved by the pursuit of irrational whims…  Man is free to attempt to survive in any random manner, but he will perish unless he lives as his nature requires…”  – John Galt

While not a biblical quote, it seems a bit Bible!  God has given us a way to live, a way that Wisdom (the Father, the Son and the Spirit) inspired and placed in our hands to learn about Him and guide us to Life.  That quotation is from the novel Atlas Shrugged.  While it is not a biblical account of life, some of that book’s interpretations are associated with the nature of the men and women of God’s creation.  The quote is a portion of a speech by the novel’s hero, John Galt.  (Other biblical phrases seem to fall in place with it:  There is a way that seems right to man but the end thereof is death.  They loved the Darkness more than Light.)  I think the totality of the quotation is: There’s one way that leads us to Life and anything opposite, anything opposed to it, leads to death.  Since Adam, the world has chosen the things that work against us, things that bring death and not life, to glorify and hold up as causes and heroes.

Galt speaks of a ‘living death’ that lives within and around us.  It’s an existence only; a life without Life, and that’s not what our creation was purposed to be.  The Father’s Life is not a survival mode existence but an elevated Life, breathed into our hearts in order to experience Him, to know Him.  And, while our leaders pose as scientists and wise men trying to convince us of the opposite, trying to convince us we can live apart from God and deny His existence and still live a perfectly wonderful life, it’s a charade and a mockery of God.  It sets us, and especially our children, up for big time failures.  We are ‘free to attempt to survive in any random manner, but will perish unless (we) live as (our) nature requires.’  Our nature requires a relationship with the giver of Life!

Now, you would have thought that Jesus might have come in such a way, talked in such a way, that he would not have been misunderstood.  He might have done things, said things that would have removed any doubt about being King of Kings, right?  But if you examine the ‘nature’ of the Messiah’s ways they’re a bit upside down.  As such, after many of his miracles he either instructed people to go and tell no one, or he himself went away and isolated himself in prayer, away even from his closest followers.  Jesus came to his own, and his own did not receive him.  He was despised, he was the stone the builders rejected, he was accused of being an illegitimate child, accused of being demon possessed, and by Mark Chapter 3, his own family thinks he’s crazy.  Not such a good Messiah strategy it would seem.  I know what we would have done had we come to save the world.  We would have tried to figure out how to get on Fox, see if Leno was available, checked out Good Morning America.  We would have tried to prove that we were the Way, the Truth and the Life.  But, that’s not how Jesus approached his incarnation.  The Psalm says he would not raise his voice in the streets. (Isa. 42:2) He knew that the lasting part of the Gospel is only going to ‘stick’ if it’s a relationship by the Holy Spirit and not on power or personality.  The disciples witnessed so much, saw so much and still did not get it.  At the Last Supper he instructed them all to meet Him in Jerusalem after the crucifixion, not one did that.  Have you ever noticed at the feeding of the fishes and loaves how Jesus seemed to be reluctant to do that miracle?  The disciples practically had to pull it out of him.  His first response was to suggest they take all their monies and go buy food, finally giving in and simply telling them to pass around that picnic lunch to 5000.  By the time the basket reached the back row, Jesus was going away to pray.  Oh, I know what we would have had him do, stand up, take a nice applause, spot light what just happened and encourage people to go and tell everyone what they had seen.  Not this Messiah, not this heart of Love.  The Wisdom present in Jesus knew that people could not be talked into, or miracled into, believing who he was.  The only holding power would be the power created through their self discovery of who he was, not his persuading them to do so.  He was not selling the Gospel, he was the Gospel.

Paul calls the Gospel a mystery.  It wasn’t a mystery because Jesus didn’t reveal it, but because the people could not receive a Messiah, a King, that didn’t set up a palace and do magic shows.  Instead they got a Messiah that was talking of suffering and dying.  Remember the great Temptation.  You know Jesus could have done each and every thing Satan requested and proven to be Messiah.  But, the Wisdom of God knew full well that was not his purpose in coming.  His Kingdom was not an earthly one full of political power, but a spiritual one to dominate the earthly.  His Kingdom was a different one than what Messiah worshipers were looking for.  He resisted those that were always looking for physical signs and embraced that which was unseen. (By the way, did you notice he did every one of the things suggested at the Temptation later in his ministry?  He miraculously fed 5000, he placed himself on a cross and ‘fell’ to his death to be caught up and preserved by the Spirit, and having been raised from the dead finally placed at the right hand of God at the throne of God.)

Being the kind of creatures we are, we still want to see Him today, want to have Him appear and confirm our hopes.  That would suspend Faith/Trust– good for us, but not so much for the plan of God.  In His economy, we’re to see Him as present already, see Him with us, in us, and know the companionship of His Spirit. We’re to know a Kingdom that’s already come, a sphere of His reign already accessible to believers.

The way His plan went down was puzzling to me until something dropped down into my heart a while back: what He wants more than anything is ‘to be a Father to us’.  Yes, He’s a King, a Lord, a Savior; but even more, He wants to be our Father!  You know what fathers do.  They teach us.  My dad taught me to mow the lawn, hold a hammer, how to garden, how to drive, how to be (a pretty good I might add) squirrel hunter, taught me to be honest, to be fair, and in his way, to be courageous.  My dad did those things by being with me day by day.  He taught me what would work for me and what would not work in my life.  That’s what dads do, and God loves being a Dad to us.  He loves being a Companion, a Comforter, a Prince of our Peace and Joy.  He wants a personal relationship with you and me even more than He wants the relationship with a crowd of 5000. The followers wanted to install him as ruler, King of the Jews.  Jesus was uncomfortable with that, did not want to be a rock star.  He was more interested in Nicodemus at midnight or Phillip in a tree than he was in accumulating fans in a popularity contest.

It’s a mystery only because we have to be looking for, searching for Him.  But, He wants to be found.  His Wisdom says he who hungers and thirsts will be satisfied.  He’s able to meet with us each day.  Lead us, guide us, and secure us by the Spirit of God.  Our searching keeps us with Him, discovering Him and centered on Him.  He’s new every morning.  There’s always something fresh He wants to share with us.  He constantly transforms, converts, and reveals– that means we will never get done learning of Him.  Being with Him now means our Eternal Life has already begun, for He is with us!

December Newsletter-Birth

Posted on by Laura Posted in Newsletters | Leave a comment

God, who has saved us and called us with a holy calling, not according to our works, but according to His own purpose and grace, which was given us in Christ Jesus before the world began, but is now made manifest by the appearing of our Saviour Jesus Christ…(2Tim1:9-10) (in nothingness, before anything existed, all that existed was the relationship between the Father, the Son and the Spirit.)
Christ-mas is about celebrating the birth of Christ. We should stop and think about that a moment. In our everyday hustle and bustle we tend to just meet the ‘holidays’ head on and not pay much attention to what specifically we might be celebrating. The birth of Christ is so central to what we believe and our hope as Christians. It is one incident in a chain of events that, without it, the whole chain breaks apart. Each section is unable to provide what only the whole can provide. Let’s start with the simple birth-incarnation of Jesus. Imagine the actual moment when God, who is bigger than our universe, actually outside billions of universes that exist, God who is outside that entire cosmos, steps into this small planet. He stepped into His creation from outside the other side of the whole of creation. Stop there and think about that. Big deal isn’t it! Bigger than I think we celebrate sometimes. The writer of this story stepped into the story and began to teach us about Himself for the purpose of permitting us to know Him and know the Love He has for His creation.
Our Faith depends on this: a chosen people, the small town of Nazareth, a young Jewish girl, one single winter’s night, a small stable and a bright shining star! That’s why this ministry spends all its time dedicated to keeping our thoughts and attention on the child born at that single moment. This ministry is not about denominations, we’re not about ‘we are right and you’re wrong and you need to get right.’ No, we are about the birth, death and resurrection of Christ Jesus and keeping our mind on Him daily.
Here we are, 25 years into this thing called WBVN. The initial purpose of this ministry was to come and serve this community of believers, i.e., Church. I guess we could have chosen a lot of things to come and serve. There are tons of religions in the world. Many of them have a more ‘lawful’ ethic or higher demand for morality than Christianity. Some have hundreds and hundreds of laws, observances and traditions. But in our Faith, believing in Christ is not an ethical or moral decision. A Faith in Christ comes with an encouragement that the Sabbath was made for man, not man for the Sabbath. (Mark 2:27) That’s simply the Faith question. In our Faith, for sure there’s a morality; it contains an ethic, but the central theme is not our ‘perfect’ behavior. Our focus is His perfect behavior, planned before time, before the world began. The question we all must ask is whether we believe His life was ‘enough’ to cover what we do. Christianity not a morality that we adhere to; it’s a Faith in Him that we hold fast to.
The real test between religions is does it make wings to lift people up or are its wings dead weight that drag people down? Very simply, does our Faith carry us or do we have the burden of carrying it? The Grace of God is powerful because it reveals how to live rather than just revealing how we ‘miss it’ sometimes. Jesus said His yoke was easy and His burden light. It is the yoke of a finished work. The very thing that empowers us is the thing that so many are afraid of: Grace. We will at the first sign of trouble, at our first chance, depend on our works to get God to do something for us. It becomes a ‘if You will do this I will promise to do that’ transaction. We have a tendency to look at ‘our walk’ and see that it’s not what it should be all the time, perhaps most the time. Our mistaken response is to set ourselves at work, mending it as best we can, improving it if possible, only to find ourselves back where we began: inadequate at best. That process frustrates us and is meant to frustrate us. That frustration should cause us to search out the Grace of God. Anything but that Grace is a strange doctrine according to Paul’s Spirit-inspired scripture. Performance and works are strangers to grace and mercy. Worldly religion is simply us trying to get back to God; ‘Christ-ianity’ is God getting to us.
Paul wrote Ephesians, Philippians and Colossians while in prison. However, each is a celebration of joy. Why was he joyous? I think Paul answers that in Philippians: he had been found by God, had come to know Him, experienced the power of His resurrection, suffered His sufferings (sufferings for his faith, more akin to persecutions because of his Faith, rather than having had a bad cold), died with Him, been raised with Him and was looking to Christ’s return.
Paul had come to know that, if there is any gain in this life it is to gain Christ. It’s Christ that we must grasp. It’s a simple formula: keep Christ the center of our Faith, not make you or your neighbor the center of your Faith. We can be tempted away from the simplicity of that by the whispers of Eden. We can be turned, looking at what others are doing as our evidence of God? or No God? We can be enticed to try and solve our problems by making this Faith one of morality, turning our Faith into perfecting the flesh at the expense of the Spirit. To discover Paul’s truth is to be empowered to live out the Christian life in practice. In the book of Ephesians, Paul speaks of being perfect, but he had no illusions about the flesh and its imperfection. Rather, to be perfect was to come to the place of maturity in ‘Christ learning.’ There is nowhere else to go from that Truth. Christ is ‘all in all.’ He is the full deal, the finished work — we are not and we never will be! Merry Christmas