Wednesday, November 11, 2015

Circumstances do not change the promise!

If we focus on our surroundings or the circumstances involved in the lives of our prodigals, our faith can falter.  However, we must keep our mind on the promise, because that is what is really true.

God knew about our tendency to focus on what we can see and hear.  Perhaps that is why He had Paul write these words:  "Finally, brethren, whatever things are true, whatever things are noble, whatever things are just, whatever things are pure, whatever things are lovely, whatever things are of good report, if there is any virtue and if there is anything praiseworthy--meditate on these things."  (Philippians 4:8)

When your faith is weakened for the moment, meditate on this verse:  "God is not a man, that He should lie, Nor a son of man, that He should repent.  Has He said, and will He not do?  Or has He spoken, and will He not make it good?" (Numbers 23:19)

Hold on the promises God has given you regarding your prodigal.  It WILL come to pass!

Monday, October 12, 2015

"For I will pour water on him who is thirsty, And floods on the dry ground; I will pour my Spirit on your descendants, And My blessing on your offspring"  (Isaiah 44:3).

"The Lord is my rock and my fortress and my deliverer; My God, my strength, in whom I will trust; My shield and the horn of my salvation, my stronghold" (Psalm 18:2).

"If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness" (1 John 1:9)

Wednesday, October 7, 2015

Scriptures of God's Power and Authority

"Now to Him who is able to do exceedingly abundantly above all that we ask or think, according to the power that works in us"  (Ephesians 3:20). 

"But Jesus looked at them and said to them, 'With men this is impossible, but with God all things are possible.'" (Matthew 19:26)

"And Jesus came and spoke to them, saying, 'All authority has been given to Me in heaven and on earth.'"  (Matthew 28:18)

"God has spoken once, Twice I have heard this:  That power belongs to God."  (Psalm 62:11)

Tuesday, October 6, 2015

The definition of intercession:  the Hebrew word is "paga."  According to Strong's Concordance, it means, "to impinge, by accident or violence, or (fig.) by importunity: -- come (betwixt), cause to entreat, fall (upon), make intercessions, intercessor, intreat, lay, light (upon), meet (together), pray, reach, run. 

Monday, October 5, 2015

A few months ago, I asked God, as I still do from time to time, to "help mine unbelief" (Mark 9:24).  Well, He is doing just that!  Miracle after miracle has occurred, and my faith is growing.  I want to share some of those miracles with you so your faith can increase.

First, and probably the most significant to you as pray-ers for prodigals, we have had 12 prodigals saved!  TWELVE!!!  And, prodigal related, a lady who attends church with me came home a couple of weeks ago to find her prodigal daughter lying on her couch as if she had never been gone.  She is still at home and has been attending church!  A 30-year prodigal was saved just last week, making the real number 13!

Next, I will address the healings.  About four weeks ago, a friend of mine came to church in a wheelchair because she couldn't walk well enough to come without it.  She went up for prayer and left in a wheelchair.  However, the next week, she came with only a walker.  The next week, she needed neither and climbed the stairs to sing in the choir loft with the choir TWICE!! 

The son of a couple from church was diagnosed with cancer, having tumors in numerous places.  Last week, we received word that the doctor said his cancer had "vanished," quoting the radiologist reading the CT scan!  VANISHED!!

A gentleman from our church had a sister on life support.  They gathered the family around her bed to say their final good-byes before they removed her life support.  She did not die!!  In fact, she revived and is doing well!!! 

And, God healed my thumb!!!!! 

There have been so many amazing miracles.  God is amazing! 

If you are struggling with unbelief, if you feel you cannot receive answers to prayer for healing or for your prodigal that seems so lost, hold on!  God is working even now!!  And ask Him to help you love Him more and for your faith to be increased!  He will answer those prayers beautifully!  Ask Him!!  He will!! 

Friday, October 2, 2015

More Scriptural Promises

"They shall walk after the Lord.  He will roar like a lion.  When He roars, Then his sons shall come trembling from the west."  (Hosea 11;10)

"So I will restore to you the years that the swarming locust has eaten.  Then you shall know that I am in the midst of Israel:  I am the Lord your God And there is no other.  My people shall never be put to shame.  And it shall come to pass afterward That I will pour out My Spirit on all flesh; Your sons and your daughters shall prophesy, Your old men shall dream dreams, Your young men shall see visions."  (Joel 2:25, 27-28)

"And if we know that he hear us, whatsoever we ask, we know that we have the petitions that we desired of him.  If any man see his brother sin a sin which is not unto death, he shall ask, and he shall give him life for them that sin not unto death."  (1 John 5:15-16)

"The Lord has appeared of old to me, saying:  'Yes, I have loved you with an everlasting love; Therefore with lovingkindness I have drawn you.'" (Jeremiah 31:3)

Wednesday, September 30, 2015

Today I want to share a scripture that has built my faith recently, reminding me that there God will forgive the sins of the sinner, even if they are horrible sins.

Paul is telling Timothy of his many sins forgiven by God, and we know how God used Paul after his conversion.  "Who was before a blasphemer, and a persecutor, and injurious:  but I obtained mercy, because I did it ignorantly in unbelief."  (1 Timothy 1:13)

If your prodigal seems so lost that salvation seems impossible, remember the Apostle Paul!  Your prodigals and mine can be saved!  I believe God CAN, and I know He WILL!!!

Monday, September 21, 2015

More promises!

"Have you not known?  Have you not heard?  The everlasting God, the LORD, The Creator of the ends of the earth, Neither faints nor is weary.  His understanding is unsearchable."  (Isaiah 40:28)

"They wandered in the wilderness in a desolate way; They found no city to dwell in .  Hungry and thirsty, Their soul fainted in them.  Then they cried out to the LORD in their trouble, And He delivered them out of their distresses.  Those who sat in darkness and in the shadow of death, Bound in affliction and irons -- Because they rebelled against the words of God, And despised the counsel of the Most High, Therefore He brought down their heart with labor; They fell down, and there was none to help.  Then they cried out to the LORD in their trouble, And He saved them out of their distresses.  He brought them out of darkness and the shadow of death, And broke their chains in pieces.  Fools, because of their transgression, And because of their iniquities, were afflicted.  Their soul abhorred all manner of food.  Then they cried out to the LORD in their trouble, And He saved them out of their distresses."  (Psalm 107:4-6, 10-14, 17-19) 

Tuesday, August 11, 2015

Doubting Thomas

A visiting minister read the story of Thomas.  Right in the middle it hit me:  Jesus went to Thomas, met him where he was, physically and in his lack of faith.  Then He revealed Himself in a way that built Thomas' faith.  Then He said to Thomas, ‘Reach your finger here, and look at My hands; and reach your hand here, and put it into My side. Do not be unbelieving, but believing’ ” (John 20:27). 

God will do that for our prodigals!!  He knows their doubts intimately, every detail.  He knows their doubts about Him.  He knows their doubts about themselves.  He knows if they are doubting His ability or willingness to forgive them for what they have done.  He knows if they are questioning His existence.

He knows.

He also knows what He needs to do to show them Himself and to increase their faith.

I am praying that for my prodigal and for others. 

This is the prayer I sent out to our list of pray-ers for prodigals:

LORD, You helped doubting Thomas.  Help _______________.  Just like You met Thomas where his doubt was and revealed Yourself in a way that built his faith, meet ________________ and reveal Yourself in a way that builds his/her faith and restore him/her to salvation.  In Jesus’ name we pray. Amen!

Thursday, August 6, 2015

It has been pouring rain for most of the day!  It just hit me a few minutes ago that this is what we are praying for spiritually.

I want to list more promises.

"There is no one like the God of Jeshurun, Who rides the heavens to help you, And in His excellency on the clouds.  The eternal God is your refuge, And underneath are the everlasting arms; He will thrust out the enemy from before you, And will say, 'Destroy!' " (Deuteronomy 33:26-27)

"For the eyes of the LORD run to and fro throughout the whole earth, to shew himself strong in the behalf of them whose heart is perfect toward him."  (2 Chronicles 16:9)

"I sought the LORD, and he heard me, and delivered me from all my fears."  (Psalm 34:4)

"Fear not, little flock; for it is your Father's good pleasure to give you the kingdom." (Luke 12:32)

"With Him are strength and prudence.  The deceived and the deceiver are His.   He uncovers deep things out of darkness, And brings the shadow death to light."  (Job 12:16,22)

"And they that shall be of thee shall build the old waste places: thou shalt raise up the foundations of many generations; and thou shalt be called, The repairer of the breach, The restorer of paths to dwell in." (Isaiah 58:12)

"And all thy children shall be taught of the LORD; and great shall be the peace of thy children." (Isaiah 54:13)

I will call that good. The last two really spoke to me! I LOVE the promises of the Word of God!
They are all mine!

And yours!

Tuesday, July 28, 2015

So many prayers have been answered!  We have had nine people saved!  God is answering prayer!

Last Wednesday night, Voices of Life finished rehearsal early, and we began to pray for each other.  God moved on me to tell them that prayer is "powerful words to an all-powerful God that stay before the throne into eternity."

God hears the prayers of the righteous!  God answers the prayers of the righteous.  He is Jehovah Tsidkenu, the LORD our Righteousness.  He gives us His righteousness, and because of that, He will hear and answer our prayers!  He doesn't just answer the prayers of Christian celebrities, or pastors, or elders, or leaders, but He answers our prayers!

I think I will include more promises before I close.

"For though we walk in the flesh, we do not war according to the flesh.  For the weapons of our warfare are not carnal but mighty in God for pulling down strongholds, casting down arguments and every high thing that exalts itself against the knowledge of God, bringing every thought into captivity to the obedience of Christ."  (2 Corinthians 10:3-5)

"Ye have not chosen me, but I have chosen you, and ordained you, that ye should go and bring forth fruit, and that your fruit should remain:  that whatsoever ye shall ask of the Father in my name, he may give it you."  (John 15:16)

"You are of God, little children, and have overcome them, because He who is in you is greater than he who is in the world."  (1 John 4:4)

"I sought the LORD, and he heard me, and delivered me from all my fears."  (Psalm 34:4)

"God is not a man, that he should like; neither the son of man, that he should repent:  hath he said, and shall he not do it?  or hath he spoken, and shall he not amke it good?"  (Numbers 23:19)

Saturday, June 6, 2015

For this post, this one scriptural promise can stand on its own. 

"For I will take you from among the nations, gather you out of all countries, and bring you into your own land.  Then I will sprinkle clean water on you, and you shall be clean; I will cleanse you from all your filthiness and from all your idols.  I will give you a new heart and put a new spirit within you; I will take the heart of stone out of your flesh and give you a heart of flesh.  I will put My Spirit within you and cause you to walk in My statutes, and you will keep My judgments and do them."  (Ezekiel 36:24-27 NKJV)

Thursday, June 4, 2015

The promises just keep coming!

" 'Return, O backsliding children,' says the LORD; 'for I am married to you.' "--(Jeremiah 3:14)

"Therefore, behold, I will hedge up your way with thorns, And wall her in, So that she cannot find her paths.  She will chase her lovers, But not overtake them; Yes, she will seek them, but not find them.  Then she will say, 'I will go and return to my first husband, For then it was better for me than now.' "  (Hosea 2:6-7)

"Thus says the LORD:  'A voice was heard in Ramah, Lamentation and bitter weeping, Rachel weeping for he children, Refusing to be comforted for her children, Because they are no more.'  Thus says the LORD:  'Refrain your voice from weeping, And your eyes from tears; For your work shall be rewarded, says the LORD, And they shall come back from the land of the enemy.' "  (Jeremiah 31:15-17)

"I will seek that which was lost, and bring again that which was driven away, and will bind up that which was broken, and will strengthen that which was sick."  (Exekiel 34:16)

"Look to Me, and be saved, All you ends of the earth!  For I am God, and there is no other."   (Isaiah 45:22)

And one more:  "But you, be strong and do not let your hands be weak, for your work shall be rewarded!"  (2 Chronicles 15:7)

Bless the Name of the Lord, Whose promises change not!!

Tuesday, June 2, 2015

Our Prayer for Prodigals team received word on Sunday that one of our prodigals went to the altar and gave his life to the Lord!!!   We are thrilled and thankful beyond words!!

Here are more promises:

"For what great nation is there that has God so near to it, as the LORD our God is to us, for whatever reason we may call upon Him?"  (Deuteronomy 4:7)

"And it came to pass, when Jesus had made an end of commanding his twelve disciples, he departed thence to teach and to preach in their cities."  (Matthew 11:1)  This verse touches me, because it seems to promise that while I am doing what God has commanded me to do, Jesus will teach and preach in my "cities." 

"I will give you a new heart and put a new spirit within you; I will take the heart of stone out of your flesh and give you a heart of flesh.  I will put My Spirit within you and cause you to walk in My statues, and you will keep My judgments and do them."  (Ezekiel 36:26)

"Therefore know that the LORD your God, He is God, the faithful God who keeps covenant and mercy for a thousand generations with those who love Him and keep His commandments."  (Deuteronomy 7:9)

"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!' "  (John 4:50)

Monday, June 1, 2015

More promises!

"Who is the man that fears the LORD?  Him shall He teach in the way He chooses.  He himself shall dwell in prosperity, And his descendants shall inherit the earth."  (Psalm 25:12-13)

"And you know in all your hearts and in all your souls that not one thing has failed of all the good things which the LORD your God spoke concerning you.  All have come to pass for you; not one word of them has failed."  (Joshua 23:14)

Declare:  "as for me and my house, we will serve the LORD."  (Joshua 23:15)

"When Jesus saw their faith, He said to the paralytic, "Son, your sins are forgiven you."  (Mark 2:5)  Notice that Jesus saw THEIR faith, the faith of the ones who brought the paralytic to Him.  He sees our faith!

"Those who sow in tears Shall reap in joy.  He who continually goes forth weeping, Bearing seed for sowing, Shall doubtless come again with rejoicing, Bringing his sheaves with him."  (Psalm 126:5-6)

"God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble."  (Psalm 46:1)

I have so many more, but I will call this good for today.  Stay tuned!!  God wants you to know you can hold onto His promises!!

Sunday, May 31, 2015

I found more promises!!

"Lift up your heads, O you gates!  And be lifted up, you everlasting doors!  And the King of glory shall come in.  Who is this King of glory?  The LORD strong and mighty, The LORD mighty in battle.  Lift up your heads, O you gates!  Lift up, you everlasting doors!  And the King of glory shall come in.  Who is this King of glory?  The LORD of hosts, He is the King of glory.  Selah" (Psalm 24:7-10)

"And whatever we ask we receive from Him, because we keep His commandments and do those things that are pleasing in His sight."  (1 John 3:22)

"Now this is the confidence that we have in Him, that if we ask anything according to His will, He hears us.  And if we know that He hears us, whatever we ask, we know that we have the petitions that we have asked of Him."  (1 John 5:14-15)

"The LORD is near to all who call upon Him, To all who call upon Him in truth.  He will fulfill the desire of those who fear Him; He also will hear their cry and save them."  (Psalm 145:18-19)
One more verse sent from a friend who reads my blog:  "And it shall come to pass, that before they call, I will answer; and while they are yet speaking,  I will hear."  (Isaiah 65:24)

Thanks, Geneive!

Thursday, May 28, 2015

I write a Prayer for Prodigals each week that goes out to people on a mailing list and is used in a time of prayer that we host after Wednesday evening services.  Included is a promise, a name or attribute with which to praise the Lord, and a prayer based on scripture.  Some of you may be on the mailing list.

Today I was looking through some of those prayers, and I found some outstanding promises from God's Word.  They bless me, and I thought they would bless you, too.

"O LORD God of our fathers, are You not God in heaven, and do You not rule over all the kingdoms of the nations, and in Your hand is there not power and might, so that no one is able to withstand You?"  (2 Chronicles 20:6)

"Why art thou cast down, O my soul? and why art thou disquieted in me? hope thou in God:  for I shall yet praise him for the help of his countenance."  (Psalm 42:5)

"He shall not be afraid of evil tidings:  his heart is fixed, trusting in the Lord.  His heart is established, he shall not be afraid, until he see his desire upon his enemies."  (Psalm 112:7-8)

"Jesus saith unto him, Go thy way; thy son liveth.  And the man believed the word that Jesus had spoken unto him, and he went his way."  (John 4:50)

"I sought the LORD, and he heard me, and delivered me from all my fears."  (Psalm 34:4)

"Fear not, little flock; for it is your Father's good pleasure to give you the kingdom."  (Luke 12:32)

"I have seen his ways, and will heal him:  I will lead him also, and restore comforts unto him and to his mourners."  (Isaiah 57:18)

"The Spirit of the Lord GOD is upon me;  because the LORD hath anointed me to preach good tidings unto the meek; he hath sent me to bind up the brokenhearted, to proclaim liberty to the captives, and the opening of the prison to them that are bound."  (Isaiah 61:1)

"And it shall come to pass, that as I have watched over them to pluck up, to break down, to throw down, to destroy, and to afflict, so I will watch over them to build and to plant, says the Lord."  (Jeremiah 31:28)

"And the LORD said unto Moses, I will do this thing also that thou hast spoken:  for thou hast found grace in my sight, and I know thee by name."  (Exodus 33:17)

These are just a few.  Perhaps in a few days I will post more.  

Don't stop praying!  God is working.  He promised!!

Wednesday, April 15, 2015

Addendum to my last post:  There are times we should "pray through" for situations in our lives, for our unsaved loved ones.  We should be like the widow who pestered the judge until he answered her petition (Luke 18:1-7).  Sometimes we are to "stand in the gap."  (Ezekiel 22:30 says:  "And I sought for a man among them, that should make up the hedge, and stand in the gap before me for the land, that I should not destroy it:  but I found none.")  Sometimes we are to pray fervently.  (James 5:16 says:  "The effectual fervent prayer of a righteous man availeth much.")  Sometimes we are commanded to not be weary in well-doing.  (Galatians 6:9 says:  "And let us not be weary in well doing:  for in due season we shall reap, if we faint not.")

I felt clarity was in order.  Thanks for humoring me!

Thursday, April 9, 2015

I read a devotional this week, and I want to share it with you.

Coming Back
by Luann Prater
" 'Father, I have sinned against heaven and before you.  I am no longer worthy to be called your son.  Treat me as one of your hired servants.' "
 (Luke 15:18-19 ESV)
"Kay was a prodigal.  She had been stunningly beautiful, but now her beauty was hollow and worn.  Downcast with shoulders slumped, she walked throught the doors of her childhood church.
"Heads turned and whispers hollowed her as she made her way to the front of the church during an invitation to come forward for prayer.  She fell to her knees at the altar.  A group gathered around her and prayed for what seemed like an eternity.  She slowly rose to her feet and was asked, 'Did you pray through?' to which the weary wanderer replied, 'I think so.'
"I don't remember seeing Kay back in church again.
"In my church, the phrase 'pray through' was synonymous with striving, staining, and working to find grace and deliverance.  When I became a prodigal myself and wanted desperately to find answers and deliverance, I remembered Kay's forlorn look and decided to keep wandering.  It just seemed easier than trying to 'pray through.'
"Have you been wandering, looking for answers?  Do you long to return to the Father after being far away but hesitate, wondering how you will make it back to Him and what it will cost you?
"When coming 'back home' we often have the same mentality as the prodigal sone (Luke 15:18-19).  Feeling worn down and unworthy, we come to our Father thinking we have to work like hired servants to earn our place.
"After many years, I discovered that forgiveness and salvation aren't chores for us to labor over.  They are free gifts from an amazing God!  Jesus offeres these gifts to all who believe in His name. 
"Jesus says, 'Come to me.'  Period.  It really isn't any more complicated than that.  He loves you.  He has been waiting for you and He welcomes you with open arms.  We don't have to work for forgivenss or 'pray through' like those well-meaning people in my childhood church felt the need to do. 
"God's heart for us is the same as the father's heart for his prodigal son:  'But while (the prodigal son) was still a long way off, his father saw him and was filled with compassion for him; he ran to his son, threw his arms around him and kissed him' (Luke 15:20)."
This is the bulk of it.  I hope it gives hope.

Wednesday, April 1, 2015

There is no telling how many times I have read this verse, but today a part jumped out at me, and I felt I should share with you.

Many of our lost loved ones are deceived someway or another.  Either they do not see their need for a Savior, perhaps because they are such good people, or they do not believe in the infallibility of the Word of God, or they have bought into some part of the current ideas on the creation or homosexuality or God's judgment.  Or perhaps they do not feel they can ever be forgiven for the sins they have committed or that God would answer their prayers.  Deception comes in all shapes and sizes.  But Job 12:16 address that:  "With him is strength and prudence.  The deceived and the deceiver are His."

And that's that! 

Friday, March 13, 2015

I know this is my second post of the day, and this is less a raindrop and more of a realization, a dawning, an Aha Moment.  I simply had to share.

Christians seem to throw the word saved around easily, so much so that it has lost its real meaning.  But lately, I have been aware of just how much that word means.

I have been spending time with someone who is very bound by satan, whose life is enveloped in darkness, who is so very lost.  It hit me:  this person needs to be SAVED:  saved from the darkness; saved from the deception; saved from the bondage; saved from being lost.  This person needs to be SAVED from satan and his plans.  This person needs to be rescued, delivered, SAVED!!!! 

I am praying this scripture over this person:  "Cause __________ to call on Your Name, LORD, and save him/her."  (Romans 10:9, 13)

Keep on praying. 
It has been a while, and I am sorry for that.  The raindrops are still coming, and I have one to share this morning.

Hebrews 10:23 says:  "Let us hold fast the profession of our faith without wavering; (for he is faithful that promised;)"  (I know that I should have put a period inside that quotation mark, but I had to leave the original punctuation, because it feels like God just winked at me!  He loves me and my prodigal!) 

So I am taking notice of this verse.  It tells me to not let my faith waver in my words.  I am to "hold fast the profession of" my "faith."  The New King James Version puts it this way:  "Let us hold fast the confession of our hope without wavering, for He who promised is faithful.

Our words are powerful!  Have you ever told a story from your past so many times that you KNOW it is the truth, but when you tell it in the presence of someone else who was there, they remember it a totally different way?  My sister constantly reminds me that I caused her to brake her tailbone when we were children.  She says that when we were living in Grand Bay, Alabama, I was pushing her on our neighbor's flying jenny way too fast, and she flew off.  The way I remember it is that she was trying to sit on the corner of the bed and missed, falling off and landing on the hardwood floor.  I also remember that the neighbor who owned the flying jenny lived across the street from us in Gordo, Alabama.  We have both told that story so many times, that the details have gotten out of whack, most likely on both sides.

So, back to the scripture at hand.  Let's keep our words full of faith.  I would never want one of us to allow our words to talk us out of believing that God can and will save our lost loved one.  Ephesians 3:20 says that God is able, but only as much as we allow His power to work in us.  Let's read that verse:  "Now to Him who is able to do exceedingly abundantly above all that we ask or think, according to the power that works in us."  We always focus on the first part of that verse, and for very good reason:  it builds our faith.  But if we look at the last part, it seems to say that we can limit what God will do, not can do, by how much we allow His power to work in us. 

Let's confess our faith, profess our faith, and NEVER say that IF God saves our lost, it will be a miracle; or that their salvation seems impossible; or that we see no hope; and so many other negative things we say when we see negative circumstances.  Let's look for those raindrops that point to the promises of God coming true.  Let's use words that build up our faith, that state firmly what God's Word promises and what God has promised us personally.  I KNOW God's promises are true, and that He keeps EVERY ONE OF THEM!!! 

One more verse that is well-known, and I will try to quit.  (It is hard to stop when it feels like God is pouring this all over me and into me!)  Philippians 4:8 says:  "Finally, brethren, whatsoever things are true, whatsoever things are honest, whatsoever things are just, whatsoever things are pure, whatsoever things are lovely, whatsoever things are of good report; if there be any virtue, and if there be any praise, think on these things."  If we think on these suggested things, our words will be as God requires, because "out of the abundance of the heart his mouth speaks." (Luke 6:45)

Let our words speak faith only, and see what God will do!

Monday, January 5, 2015

The story of Lazarus gave me hope.  I hope it does the same for you.

In "reading the red" in John 11, I found this hope and a stirring in me.  In verse 4, Jesus says, "This sickness is not unto death, but for the glory of God, that the Son of God may be glorified through it."  I remembered all the promises that my lost loved one, who is spiritually dead, is really just sleeping, and that God will work all of what is going on now for his good, and God will receive the glory. 

In verse 11, Jesus said, "Our friend Lazarus sleeps, but I go that I may wake him up."  I believe this is in response to the many prayers I have prayed for Jehovah Shammah, The Lord is There, to be with my lost loved one, and the prayers asking Jehovah Sabaoth to send His holy angels, the ministering spirits, with swords drawn, to fight satan on behalf of him.  I believe God Himself is at work in the life of my prodigal to draw him back to Himself.

Verse 23 reveals a very pointed promise:  "Your brother will rise again."  My lost loved one will live in Christ again, and I believe this promise will soon be realized.  Jesus says it another way in verses 25-26:  "I am the resurrection and the life. He who believes in Me, though he may die, he shall live.  And whoever lives and believes in Me shall never die. Do you believe this?"  The answer to His question is, "Yes, I do!!!"

Then Jesus said, "Where have you laid him?" (Verse 34).  My answer is, "I have lain him in the arms of the Savior, the Redeemer, the One Who keeps His promises," and I continue to lay him there daily, praying prayers as the Spirit leads and as I see needs arise.  In the everlasting arms of the Almighty is the best place for my prodigal to be.

When I read, "Take away the stone," in verse 39, I searched my heart to see if there was anything I needed to remove in our relationship, anything that would hinder my loved one's salvation, any offense, or any prayer I may not have prayed.  (Remember, James 4:2 says, "Yet you do not have because you do not ask.")

Then Jesus said, "Did I not say to you that if you would believe you would see the glory of God?" (Verse 40).  My heart cries, "I believe!  I believe!!  I know I will see the glory of God in this person's life!!" 

Then verses 41-42 records Jesus' prayer for Lazarus and those around Him.  "Father, I thank You that You have heard Me.  And I know that You always hear Me, but because of the people who are standing by I said this, that they may believe that You sent Me."

Then He tells Lazarus to come forth! (Verse 43)  Lazarus obeys!  Hallelujah!!  I can hardly wait!

Then there is a directive to the witnesses, to those around the tomb.  Jesus tells them, "Loose him, and let him go" (Verse 44).  This pricked my heart.  I hope that when the time comes, I will not be a hindrance in any way my loved one's walk with the Lord.  I hope that I can accept the "all things new" in his life, that I will not say anything that will cause him pain or offense, that I will let God be God in his life and allow God to do the work that needs to be done without my interference or trying to hurry the process along.  I hope I can let him be free to worship God, serve God, and to fulfill God's purposes in his life. 

This passage, although it is talking about a physical death, gave me hope for the resurrection of my lost loved one's soul and spirit.  I believe God's promises!!!