Mission Possible

Reaching,Feeding, Teaching Communities

We Have Food and Jesus: A Guide for Doing Holy Work

Posted by forthemission247 on August 25, 2015

Icon_last_supper

You have just committed yourself to the Lord. Like for real this time and now you do not know what to do.

This faith is not about doing.

It is about faith plus works. And I do not mean career and toiling the earth-although it’s included.

You could become a Christian Monk, you know;  sit around and pray to God and meditate (my dream actually) and live in peace and quiet forever.

You could start developing some skill for the local church: singing, praise dancing, teaching, preaching, cleaning- whatever.

Or you could try the famous route, which for some take years: televangelism. Need I say more?

But if you are not ready for all of that, what can you do now to show God’s love to the world?

You do not need a bus load of money and you do not need to cloak the truth by calling it “tithing”. In fact, God has already equipped you to do something that is uniquely natural(oxymoronic, I know). You were born for this anyway.

Donating Time

This can be as simple as spending time with people who either knew God at some point or do not know Him at all.

You know the ones: The woman you see crying in the break room all the time. Or the gossiper who just happens to smell bad and look forlorn at the bus stop…

You talk with them in casual conversation, allowing the Holy Spirit to be your lead. You do not need to preach and criticize the person, just talk with them. Requires no Ph.Ds, no titles or camera sets.

Advice: Just be a natural. Care about the person’s needs and go from there. If they do not want to hear you, move on.

The Power of Words

Some authors make a living writing and amazingly it translates to  public speaking engagements. Whatever turns your fancy, writing for God is one of the best positions on earth.

What will you write?

Write poetry. Write psalms. Write good books. Write movies and plays. Tosca Lee, Ted Dekker, WM. Paul Young, are shining examples as well as those we do not know.

Some of the best books and plays I have experienced were written by Christians and they blessed my socks off.

Advice: If you want to be published right away, try Lulu and Createspace to get started with publishing. Google other places too!

Look in Your Cabinet

I am not talking about the presidential cabinet at the White House.

Your house.

You do not need to have a formal title and a building to pass out can goods and ready made food(see your state laws for restrictions though).

Get a bag together and start passing out food to people. Make sure you are reaching them with the Word as well. In this way, you are bypassing the channels that will diminish direct contact with the lost sheep.

Advice: Choose fresh foods. Not anything you wouldn’t give to your own children- or dog. Give the lost sheep, fresh stuff.

Your Profession May Open Doors

When I worked in the hospital as a nurse aide, I found that it wasn’t the cleaning and blood taking that I liked(no sir!), I enjoyed conversation with my patients. I liked feeding them. And if I knew then what I know now, I would have prayed over them and for them. Some I still remember and hold dear to my heart.

Maybe you are a teacher? A lawyer? Nurse? Cashier?

God has placed someone in your path to speak to. Yes, man have created laws to try and restrict us from reaching the lost, but who can stop such a creative and powerful God?

No one!

Many of these suggestions takes nothing more than stepping out on faith.

What plans has God set in your heart? If you feel comfortable enough to share, please do. We welcome them!

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Evidence to Solidify or Shake My Faith Starts Here…

Posted by forthemission247 on August 9, 2015

Christianity Poster

I don’t know about you, but do most children or teenagers think philosophically about a religion before they choose one? Before baptism and acceptance…?

Okay, save for those child prodigies out there.

But seriously, when I was fifteen and stood on that church stage under glowing hot lights with hundreds of other church members, there was only one thing on my mind. Two at the most:

  • I really don’t want to go to hell and,
  • I really do love God(should that have been first)?

See what I mean?

A Play Set My Faith in Order

The play the church put on called “Heaven’s Gates and Hell’s Flames” was so moving with black robed demons dancing around snatching loved ones and flaming yellow and red ribbons everywhere represented fire-while tall, white robed angels stood proud and wore radiant expressions.

I wanted to go to heaven. That was all I knew. And from then on I began the practice of daily bible reading and fellowship along with Sunday church attendance.

Which is all good.

But for those who have not fallen in love with Jesus– those investigating Him to see if He is worth the time, is it wrong to seek the Dead Sea Scrolls for ultimate proof? Is it wrong to hunt down the annals of time to see who else knew Jesus 2500 years prior?

Is it wrong to question the validity of the Bible?

Evidence of Christ

I am reading (and will review later) Lee Strobel’s The Case for Christ and he asks a question:

After finding all the corroborating evidence and archeological proof of Jesus having at least existed somewhere on earth, does it solidify or shake my faith?

Personally, my faith has been waning in the last few years. Intact, but totally weakened by my lack of hope in human beings. The news and personal circumstances can make anyone feel like God is perhaps sitting back and keeping watch- doing nothing more.

But while reading Strobel’s book I feel confident that I have chosen the right religion. I know religion sounds strict but it is used in the Bible.

Reverent Mind of God and the Honest Theologian

Here is an interesting Scripture which is kind of hard to forget…

“For the foolishness of God is wiser than man’s wisdom, and the weakness of God is stronger than man’s strength”- 1 Corinthians 1:25 NIV

What a statement!

All of the philosophies and theology we learn are beautiful jewels if projected in the right direction, however it befuddles me when I wonder if we are even close to explaining how Great God is to have left His son here full of His divinity and power wrapped in baby skin only to mature and build and perform miracles we do not deserve.

So, if you are on your quest like Lee Strobel was, to finding out if this faith is the real thing, I pray you rely on the best resources and scholarship available.

However you come to know Christ, the angels rejoice anyhow because your name will be in the Lamb’s Book of Life.

And if you are like me, already in a relationship with God, then learning more about Him doesn’t hurt- it has solidified my faith in Him. I have chosen the right belief.

Have you?

~Erica

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Ghar wapsi

Posted by forthemission247 on July 22, 2015

landscape

Created by Tambako The Jaguar for Flickr.com/Design by EJ Smith

It is called ghar wapsi or “coming home”. 30 Christians last year re-converted to Hinduism and this year at least 40 families converted to Hinduism just to receive benefits from the government. You can read the rest on Christian Headlines.

The saddest part I fear, is that India may not be the only place this is happening. In fact, I know in my spirit it is EVERYWHERE.

But look deeper.

What is happening? People feel forced to rely on governments that goes against their faith to receive the help they need.

Is this happening in America?

Before you say no, I implore you to take a look at these Scriptures:

“If someone has enough money to live well and sees a brother or sister in need but shows no compassion–how can God’s love be in that person?” (1 John 3:17 New Living Translation)

“But you have insulted the poor. Is it not the rich who are exploiting you? Are they not the ones who are dragging you into court? Are they not the ones slandering the noble name of him to whom you belong?”(James 2:6-7 New International Version)

Here is a brief quote from Gotquestions.org,

In both the Old and New Testaments, we see God’s desire for His children to show compassion to the poor and needy. Jesus said that the poor would always be with us (Matthew 26:11; Mark 14:7). He also said that those who show mercy to the poor, the sick, and the needy are in effect ministering to Him personally (Matthew 25:35–40) and will be rewarded accordingly. Read more: http://www.gotquestions.org/giving-to-the-poor.html#ixzz3gfKc2As8

Again I ask, have you seen this America? Have you seen or have you been that person who had the resources to help but showed zero compassion? Have you belittled the poor? Have you walked by Jesus without ministering to help, because you and I both well know what Matthew 25 talks about…

What is happening in India is happening all over the country. Church goers and other conservatives have shut their doors or made it so hard for the poor to receive help that the Wolf has come and he offers benefits, stating all you need to do is pledge allegiance to him.

My husband and I do what we can with what we have and we understand we cannot save the world, and yes there are people content with their living situation but that represents the few not the many who want comfortable shelter, fresh clothes and food.

Here is comforting Scripture for those who are going through it financially, spiritually, and mentally:

“Listen my dear brothers: Has not God chosen those who are poor in the eyes of the world to be rich in faith and to inherit the kingdom he promised those who love him?”(James 2:5).

Lets come together with the riches and talents God bestowed upon his people and be a blessing to others.

Shalom! :)

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The Conservative, the True Believer, and a Much Needed Conversation

Posted by forthemission247 on June 29, 2015

This post is dedicated to all Believers who find themselves having to defend their faith to Conservative Churchgoers.

To understand the difference, let me help you out. A Believer is Born Again and have the biblical faith in Jesus the Word emphasizes. There is either God’s way or no way. Yahweh or the highway. Get it?

Conservative Church Goers regularly attend church. They tend to boast about money, power and politics. Jesus’ teachings are cast aside as mere moral thoughts and ancient at best. Those who are followers of Christ are put under the bus by Conservatives because they may have less. Conservatives are your modern day Pharisees.

Where can you find these conservatives? In the news talking about politics, money, and business. You may even find them on the silver screen helping others who are as affluent as themselves.

Let me back up a sec.

I stand as a sinner who has been Born Again and am deserving of punishment. And I believe in the power of the Redeeming Blood and thank God for the gift of Repentance.

And I also know that people will see my fruit and ask if I am really who I say I am.

Our fruit(Matthew 7:16) is how people will know where we stand. God took the guesswork out of learning who is for Him. It does not take being a psychic. It is really simple. If I see your actions, then I know your character. If I know your character, I know your thoughts.

Why am I writing this?

To some people, my husband and I appear to be “monks”(and we are far from it) but the fact that we love Christ and try to walk like Him we are persecuted verbally.

And so I write this to inform you, beloved that your battle will not just be against the powers and principalities of this world. There are those who proclaim to be in the faith but are instead false teachers. Wolves in sheep clothing. Stand on the Rock. Continue to watch and pray and worship the one true God over all.

Blessings :)

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Charleston, NC Shooting: Skin Syndrome, or the Sin Syndrome?

Posted by forthemission247 on June 25, 2015

As funeral plans begin for the nine souls slain at the Emanuel Episcopal Church in Charleston, NC. The whole horrific ordeal poses questions and sparks debate about one issue in America.

Race.

The gunman, a young white male, took the guessing out of the issue. He blatantly stated he wants a race war to happen. And in my opinion, the only difference between him and the others shooting blacks, is that he said it out loud what he wanted to do.

Yes, People Do Kill People, but…

Bill O’Reilly (I usually like listening to him but even he made slip ups last night). He states,

“Black Americans’ problems stem more from poverty and high crime rates in their own communities. This is not a war on blacks by the whites”(paraphrased).

True.

But what is troubling here in America,  is when you are killed because of something you cannot control: Your skin color. Your history. Your culture.

And this is what makes America so sick and in need of Jesus. This is a country labeled as “united” states, but we are only united when terrible things happen to us from outsiders. Why can’t we be united at all times?

So is this just a sin problem? What is the root of it all?

If you are a believer then you know that hate, lust, greed and all other kinds of bad fruit stem from bad roots.

And let us be very real and clear. America does have a sordid history: Slavery. Capitalism. Rich gets richer, poor get poorer- get the picture?

And then the random police shootings of African Americans…

Geesh. If you are brown then you can’t possibly step back and say “ Hey. They are just doing their jobs.”

And if you are brown you have to also acknowledge some of your part in this.

It is sin, then skin. We should not be shooting each other. And African Americans need to learn to help each other out; feed one another and encourage one another to do great things and promote peace.

What that sociopath pulled at the church was wicked.

And wickedness is birthed in all our hearts. It is only because of love we have for Christ and each other why we don’t pull craziness like that.

So let’s try not to look at this as 100% race, although it is clear what it is.

What is the root?

Pull it up and what will you see?

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From The Rising of the Sun…

Posted by forthemission247 on June 9, 2015

Let the morning bring me word of your unfailing love for I have put my trust in you. Show me the way I should go, for to you I lift up my soul. Psalm 143:8 NIV

I was jumping from Scripture to Scripture today just reading these gems of wisdom because I love it. So, when I came across Psalm 143. The Psalm of David. I was tickled.

David was definitely in a reflective mood- and more than likely being chased by someone. I don’t claim to know what inspired every psalm, but I do know that there is something about the morning that is special. And David knew this as well.

And I am NOT a morning person. I am a Night Owl.

But this powerful verse pinched my spiritual elbow because we are supposed to want God like our very next breath. We wait anxiously for a Word from him. For his justice. And for his mercy. We already have His love.

But David says, “I have put my trust in you.”

And I say I don’t want the sun to go down on my anger(Ephesians 4:26), because when it rises again, I want to face the Lord having  fully repented and washed perfectly clean from any sin.

I know.

It can be a hard task to follow. As a wonderful pastor said this past Sunday, David certainly had his faults but he was still after God’s own heart. He loved God and fully repented. Turning away completely from his sin.

But the morning always have good news when we wake up, doesn’t it?

There is this one bird that sings the same, beautiful song every morning near our window(is it the same bird though? I don’t know) and the squirrels are out playing, running around the bushes and under people’s cars.

And there is that new breath, fresh from sleep- opening my eyes again to a BRAND. NEW DAY.

A new day to worship. A new day to work. A new day to meditate. To pray. To have fun.

Partaking in God’s unfailing love.

Copyright 2015 Erica Jean Smith

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Africa: To Be, Or Not to Be…Secularized

Posted by forthemission247 on May 22, 2015

“Brighter Brains Institute is interested in secularizing Africa because we believe this would tremendously benefit the continent intellectually, socially, and economically”[See Brighter Brains Interview with Jd Otit]

Africa

Here are some reasons(paraphrased)they feel Africa should be secularized:

  • Christianity and Islam are worse and more evil than worship of African gods.
  • Christianity and Islam have divided Africa.
  • The people are no longer labeled as “African” but either Christian or Islamic.
  • The Ebola crisis: If Africa would stop praying and start studying, they can prosper…

Has this gotten you mad yet?

I cannot comment on what atrocities Islamic forces or “false Christians have committed upon Africa. I do not live there. I can only go off news reports and bad guesses.

But when it comes to these “free thinkers” and atheistic top heads, they should remember that believing in Christ is not the bad part. It is bad people who make bad decisions and getting rid of a religion is not the first step.

I am not saying that the article is wrong on all counts. Sure people should educate themselves and study what is wrong and make sound economic decisions. But to say that Christianity is part of Africa’s problem and then lump it in the same group as Islam is plain foul and illogical.

Another point I agree on in the article is that there is a “greedy top few” who control the resources and unfortunately this rips Africa apart. However, since when is praying about that situation the wrong thing to do?

And America is not too far behind either with its greedy top few and denouncement of Christian ideals, promotion of sexual immorality and the swiping of bibles out of the school system. In fact the separation here seems to be Us versus Them.

There is only one true religion which beats out modern, Westernized Christianity, Islam, Atheism, etc. Check it out:

John 14:6(ESV)-“Jesus said to him, “I am the way, and the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.

Micah 6:8-“He has told you, O man, what is good; and what does the Lord require of you but to do justice, and to love kindness, and to walk humbly with your God?

1 John 3:8-“Whoever makes a practice of sinning is of the devil, for the devil has been sinning from the beginning. The reason the Son of God appeared was to destroy the works of the devil.

Brighter Brains Institute may make sense to some who wants a radical healing and adjustment for Africa.  I know I would like Africa and everyone across the globe to become better, but letting go of pure ideals set by Christ and telling people praying is wrong is not the way to win a battle. We must lean on hope and wisdom- and wisdom will lead the way.

Because without hope, what are we left with?

Please subscribe, comment and share if this post has touched you in some way. :)

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Parasites, Demons, and Zombies

Posted by forthemission247 on May 16, 2015

Ever watch horror movies and you see a scene and go, “Ew! Yuck! How can she/he/they do that?” And when the movie is over you are glad you do not live in world like that?

Wake up call.

We do.

What I am about to reveal is the truth: We are surrounded by parasites, demons and zombies and it will literally take a full bath of repentance to get us back in order.

Don’t believe me? Check out some horrid facts from recent news headlines:

A man mows down a family of ducks in cold blood

A hurt, injured man is shot and killed by a cop

A Mom is accused of trespassing and assaulting a student

parasites

Migi from Parasyte:The Maxim| Image found on sbs.com

In the anime, Parasyte: The Maxim, a small parasite named “Migi” becomes attached to Shinichi’s right hand. Shinichi calls the parasite a demon, but according to Migi’s internet research humans are closer to demons than even he. [See: Fact Check Migi’s Claim]

In Night of the Zombies, a neighbor needed help and she banged on her neighbor’s door for assistance. The neighbor’s mother said, “Don’t let her in!” And so the girl was eaten by zombies.

You are a parasite if you…

  • Are living in a symbiotic relationship where you are benefiting at the expense of the other.
  • Take advantage of members of a certain group
  • Use people then kill them(figuratively speaking).

[Information found on Wikipedia, “parasitism”]

You are demonic if you…

  • Rebel against God(big one there)
  • Kill
  • Steal
  • Destroy

You are a zombie if you…

  • Are not aware(very important here).
  • You operate on autopilot.
  • Consume large quantities of whatever it  is: tv, food, sex as if that is your sole purpose in life.
  • You show no affection, no regard for life or peace.(The bible calls this “waxing cold”)

Night of the Living Dead image found on moviepostershop.com

Seems pretty glum, huh?

What’s even sadder is that these attributes can be applicable to “Christians” as well.

But. There is a solution that Hollywood will not offer.

It is a solution that has been tried and true over 2,000 years. Beggers, hookers, thieves, and tax collectors went from parasitic zombie demonic folks to loving followers of Jesus Christ.

Accept Him now and receive your new heart:

If you declare with your mouth, “Jesus is Lord,” and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved.(Romans 10:9 NIV)

He is the remedy.

Share across your networks and spread the cure.

Blessings :)

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Dump the Windows 8.1 Upgrade and Get the Romans 12:1 Version

Posted by forthemission247 on May 8, 2015

The new Windows 8.1 upgrade is a trip isn’t it? Aren’t upgrades supposed to be better? You can’t play DVDs no more unless you pay for a DVD playback software and the new Intel Rapid Storage Technology has a few hiccups on this new upgrade.

If you are like me, then you rarely trust upgrades anymore. Any renewing done to our machines may be okay in some ways but bad in others.

Our spirituality is like that.

When we were first saved, the sun seemed brighter, we wanted to hug it.

And hug even our enemies, including the bully, the mean mom and absentee dad, or bad sister. We had love for everyone.

We felt God for the first time and could not think of ever letting Him go.

But what happens when we get older and more mature? Do we stay positive and hold on to the faith or let it go because of addiction, afflictions and (gulp!) education? And can we ever get that hope back?

I propose, we go get that Romans 12:1 upgrade.  But first let’s see what happened when we gave ourselves to God- the first time.

Temptation Got Worse.

You know it did. If you were a child/teen when you were first saved then when puberty struck, you were surrounded by different friends, new media, and developed new feelings. God suddenly took a back seat. You didn’t mean for it to happen, it just- kind of did. The euphoric medicine called lust came into play and gave immediate gratification and we still loved God, just loved It more. This goes for sex, money, drugs, food, whatever.

We Lost Someone.

Classic case.

When we lose someone, it hurts and it hurts bad. We want them back. Why haven’t our prayers reached God. Did He not hear us?

Ever been down that road before?

I have.

After all our pleas, we still lost our loved ones.

What happened?

We Philosophized Our Way Right Out of the Word.

I will be honest and say I love school. I love learning math, science, I love to write.

Even better. I love studying other religions and philosophies.

But when does too much education become way too much?

When we become too big headed to pick up our bibles anymore. And the gap between us and the Lord widens.

Without using too much of my own opinion, I can offer some suggestions to get back on track with the Lord, because as you well know, we are the ones who leave Him and although the Lord can and does work through us, we have to be pliable.

  • Fellowship: Power is drawn from those around us who are also saved. In this way you can connect with others who can pray for you and who may have been through the same issues but they have to be godly- and fellowship does not always mean you will find these folk in a church building.

  • Bible Study:  You know when I was a teen, the only counselor I had was the Word. Next to me on my pillow was my teen study bible and the words were golden to me. I fell even harder for Jesus on those confusing nights and you know what? You can reconnect with Him too by reading the Word. Even reading other Christians’ memoirs and self help books are so encouraging to me.

  • Prayer: Highly important. This is your communication time with God. Your time of peace and meditation. And personally, I like to incorporate The Lord’s Prayer with my daily morning routine because it pretty much covers the praise and adoration part(“Our Father who art..”, “Hallowed be your name.”), our daily provisions(“Our daily bread”), and spiritual warfare(“deliver us from evil…”). And there are other prayers you can pick from the bible to be your model prayers-Psalms for example. Even better- let the Holy Spirit guide you.

And let us not forget those other helpful nuggets like faith, love, and being sure to repent.

 Ready for that upgrade?

Romans 12:1 says,

“Do not conform any longer to the pattern of this world but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will able to test and approve what God’s will is-his good, pleasing and perfect will.”(NIV)

Warranty Notice: Forever.

We welcome your comments, questions and if you can add anything else of value which you have learned, don’t be shy. Share it!

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Movie Review: ‘God’s Not Dead’ is An Ideal That Can Be Attained

Posted by forthemission247 on April 22, 2015

Image found on courageouschristianfather.com/Pureflix Films

A student’s first day in Philosophy class will make any honest Christian sweat. His college professor tells everyone to write on a piece of paper, “God Is Dead” and to sign their name at the bottom. This obviously Christian  student defies him and so the professor tells him he has to give his defense of God and convince him and the other students to believe God’s Not Dead.

Tough call.

Sublots Made the Movie.

But the movie held my interest from beginning to end(with amazing acting and great storyline) and what makes this movie particularly special are the “sub plots and minor characters” who aren’t really minor at all but contribute to the soul of the story.

I can’t explain all of this without giving too much away but I will say there is a young Muslim woman in here controlled by religion and her dad, then there is  a girl who does not realize that her boyfriend should follow God first and only, and there is the Japanese student who is falling in love with Philosophy class now that there is a God debate going on.

Are Non-Christians Made to Appear Horrible in the Film…?

This movie has taken some criticism, of course saying that the non-Christians are made to look greedy and pompous.

But when I saw the film myself I wondered. How many true Christians are there really?

In most Christian films, Christians are made to look very holy and forgiving and always giving the Word of God to someone and to be honest I have seen this but only in select churches. And sometimes, other Christians act worse than non-Christians(I know this from experience as well).

Perhaps “clean” films like this one wish to paint a picture of what holiness should look like. Some characters in the film played greedy roles but others just did not know God, leading a life of nonchalance or agnosticism.

The Verdict.

However the message was very clear in the film and you will admire the chutzpa of the student as he pores over Scriptures and over his heart to proclaim boldly, God is Not Dead!”

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