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Thursday, January 31, 2013

Lord, Teach Us To Pray! Part 219

Prayers of the Old Testament
The Prayer of Jehoshaphat continued...

2 Chronicles 20:4, “So Judah gathered together to ask help from the Lord; and from all the cities of Judah they came to seek the Lord.”

It wasn’t just Jehoshaphat seeking the Lord by himself, the people had heard of the approaching danger, and so they gathered together from all the cities of Judah to ask help from the Lord. All these people were united in one purpose, and as a corporate body they prayed for the Lord to help them out of the predicament they found themselves in.

Both in the Old and New Testaments we see the tendency for corporate prayer whenever the dangers the people of God faced were beyond their ability to deal with. We seek solace among the brethren, and though many have tried to disprove it over the years, we tend to believe there is safety in numbers. Hence the reason for the numerous Scripture passages encouraging us not to forsake the fellowship of the brethren.

Unity and fellowship are precious things, often unappreciated in and of themselves, until they are no longer possible.

Judah saw the danger approaching, and so they gathered to pray and seek the Lord. It wasn’t something they left up to the priests or the Levites, it wasn’t something they left up to the king, they all gathered, from all the cities of Judah, because they realized no one could pray on their behalf, and no one could seek the Lord in lieu of them.

Those who gathered were not just the heads of the households of Judah, but they brought with them wives and children, all praying together, all seeking the Lord, because men, women, and children alike are individually responsible for coming before the Lord.

2 Chronicles 20:13, “Now all Judah, with their little ones, their wives, and their children, stood before the Lord.”

There is a danger in not introducing our children to the Lord from an early age, and there is a danger in not being living testimonies for our families. Just because one generation knows the Lord does not automatically guarantee that the next generation will likewise know the Lord if they are not raised up in the ways of the Lord.

2 Chronicles 20:5-6, “Then Jehoshaphat stood in the congregation of Judah and Jerusalem, in the house of the Lord, before the new court, and said: ‘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?’”

Try as one might, it is difficult if not outright impossible to overstate the importance of righteous and godly leadership. Whether it pertains to a nation, a congregation, or a family, if the leader is righteous, he will compel the rest of the nation, the body or the family to righteousness.

Jehoshaphat was a man of righteousness, therefore he stood in midst of the congregation in the house of the Lord and prayed to God for victory rather than attempt to win the battle on his own.

When ungodly men rule over a nation or a congregation, it shows. It won’t take much time to see the stress fractures and the cracks in the meticulously choreographed programs or services, because when God is systematically rejected, when His counsel is not heeded and His commandments are ignored, He leaves the nation or the congregation to the desires of their heart.

To those of the world being left to the desire of one’s heart might sound like a good thing, something to be welcomed and celebrated, but the desire of flesh is always to draw further away from God, and eventually, when darkness overwhelms the senses and the light of hope no longer shines in the heart, one realizes just how tragic being left to the desire of one’s heart truly is.

Jehoshaphat and the people gathered in the house of the Lord and prayed. Prayer was their preparation for the battle to come. They didn’t come together to discuss strategy, nor did they come together to exchange battle tactics, they came together to pray and beseech God to intervene on their behalf and give them victory.

Jehoshaphat himself began to pray, and his prayer confirms a deep, intimate, and profound knowledge of God. Jehoshaphat did not pray as one who had a partial or tangential knowledge of God, he did not pray as one who had heard stories of the God of Israel and in a pinch decided to cry out to Him. Jehoshaphat prayed as one who knew God on an intimate level, who had seen His mighty hand at work, and who believed in the power and might of the Lord.

The battle Jehoshaphat and his people were being forced into came as a surprise to them. It was neither welcomed nor expected, but not everything in life is. One of the most powerful lessons we can glean from Jehoshaphat’s prayer, and subsequent actions, is that although certain circumstances in our lives may cause us to grow fearful, although some events which befall us are numbing and unexpected, we must always be ready for battle, having prepared ourselves through prayer and supplication.

The battle belongs to the Lord. If this truth is alive and vibrant in us, there is no worry or concern over how we will overcome the enemy, or win the skirmish. We know it is not up to us, it is not contingent upon our own strength or military prowess, it is all God, and He gives the victory.

We know God rules over kingdoms and nations, we know in His hand are power and might, and the knowledge of this gives us hope and boldness to stand on the battlefield, and confront the enemy which threatens to overrun us.

With love in Christ,
Michael Boldea Jr.

Wednesday, January 30, 2013

Lord, Teach Us To Pray! Part 218

Prayers of the Old Testament
The Prayer of Jehoshaphat

Jehoshaphat was the son of Asa, a king of Judah. After Asa’s death, Jehoshaphat took his father’s throne at the age of thirty-five, and reigned over Judah for twenty-five years. During his reign, Jehoshaphat systematically set about destroying the idols of Baal, and turning the hearts of the people back to their God.

It was not an easy task, and Jehoshaphat had opposition, but his desire was to fulfill the law of God, to pursue the righteousness of God, and he let nothing stand in his way.

2 Chronicles 17:3, “Now the Lord was with Jehoshaphat, because he walked in the former ways of his father David; he did not seek the Baals, but sought the God of his father, and walked in His commandments and not according to the acts of Israel.”

There was a clear and distinct reason as to why the Lord was with Jehoshaphat, and it was not because of his heritage, or who his father had been, but because he sought God and walked in His commandments, and not according to what everyone else was doing.

At the time of Jehoshaphat’s ascent to power, Israel had strayed from the commandments of the Lord. They had surrendered their hearts to idols, and began to worship the deities of the nations surrounding them rather than the one true God. Even though the great majority had given themselves over to idolatry, Jehoshaphat walked in the former ways, in the righteousness of God, and because he chose to seek the Lord, the Lord was with him.

The ‘everyone else is doing it’ excuse doesn’t work with God. It doesn’t matter how many have embraced a certain practice, believe a certain thing, or follow a certain doctrine. If it is not in harmony with the Word of God, if it does not echo the Scriptures, if it does not serve the Lord, you ought not to surrender your heart to it.

As believers we give in to peer pressure far more often than we ought. We want to be liked, accepted and embraced, and so we begin to make concessions where no concessions can be made. We either walk the narrow path among the few, or the wide path among the many.

Jehoshaphat chose to walk the narrow path even though the overwhelming majority had chosen otherwise. As individuals we are individually responsible for none other than ourselves. We will not answer on behalf of another as to why they did or didn’t choose to follow after truth, we will answer for ourselves.

Not only did Jehoshaphat choose to walk in the ways of the Lord, he committed himself to stirring the hearts of the people, and showing them the way they must go. Toward this end Jehoshaphat also incorporated the help of the Levites whom he sent out to teach the law of the Lord to every city.

Because of his principled stance, because he would not compromise, Jehoshaphat had his share of enemies, detractors, and those who would see him dethroned. Trials were also constant companions of Jehoshaphat, because serving God does not mean being spared trials. On the contrary, when the enemy sees us striving for righteousness and holiness, he focuses his attacks on us in the hopes of dissuading us from seeking a deeper and more fulfilling relationship with God.

The enemy is unconcerned with the lukewarm. He is unconcerned with those who only pay God lip service but live their lives contrary to the virtues they profess. The enemy grows despondent when he sees an individual seeking God with their whole heart and walking in the ways of the Lord because he knows the power and authority true believers have access to in God.

If you are not a threat to the enemy, chances are he will leave you alone.

Jehoshaphat was a threat to the enemy and all his plans. He was waging a one man crusade against darkness and making headway. Seeing this, the enemy began his own counteroffensive hoping to thwart Jehoshaphat.

And so, war came by way of Moab and Ammon. The Moabites and Ammonites were great in number, and when Jehoshaphat was informed of their coming against him, he was fearful, and set himself to seek the Lord.

2 Chronicles 20:3, ‘And Jehoshaphat feared, and set himself to seek the Lord, and proclaimed a fast throughout Judah.”

More often than not fear cripples even the bravest of men. When we allow fear to worm its way into our hearts we no longer react to events in our lives in an appropriate or timely manner. Fear paralyzes, it weakens our resolve, and we hesitate when we should quicken our pace.

Throughout the Scriptures we see the outcome of fear in the hearts of kings and leaders of men alike, who made compromises upon compromises just to be left alone, just to be spared. All men feel fear, all men go through those moments when they realize they are afraid, but it’s what they do in those instances that truly matter. What do you do when you fear? How do you react to fear in your heart? Do you allow fear to paralyze you, or do you run into the arms of God? Do you allow fear to dictate terms, or do you rise above the fear, and seek the Lord in your trial?

Jehoshaphat feared, but he did not allow the fear he felt to paralyze him. He set himself to seek the Lord, and proclaimed a fast throughout Judah, knowing only God could remedy the situation he found himself in, and only God could grant him victory.

Do you know God well enough to know He is the one to run to when you feel fear? Do you know God well enough to know that He can remedy any situation, fix any problem, and deliver you from any danger?

Jehoshaphat sought the God of his father, walked in His commandments and as a direct result got to know God on a personal and intimate level. Because he knew the God he served, because he knew the power of Him, and the glory of Him, Jehoshaphat ran to God when he felt fear and sought to the Lord when his enemies encamped around him.

Jehoshaphat did not march his armies onto the battlefield thinking he could vanquish the Ammonites and the Moabites on his own, he did not try to remedy the situation with his own intellect, he ran to God, and sought the Lord.

With love in Christ,
Michael Boldea Jr.

Tuesday, January 29, 2013

Reality Check Part 9

With this installment of reality check, there is but one more to go and we are done with the series. Tomorrow we return to our prayer series, and see what more the Lord would teach us about the prayers of the Old Testament.

Thanks for watching, thanks for reading, adn thank you for keeping me in your prayers.

With love in Christ,
Michael Boldea Jr.

                                         Reality Check Part 9

Sunday, January 27, 2013

With Eyes Wide Open

To say there is a war against religion or against some abstract notion of a god – whomever or whatever that god might be – would be too broad a supposition. There most definitely is a war, but the war is specific, targeted, well thought out, and currently being executed. The war I speak of is against the God of the Bible, and His Son Jesus Christ.

The world gives not a second glance to those who shamelessly claim to worship space aliens, themselves, or their fingernail clippings, but mention the name Jesus within the context of your belief structure, and friend, you’ve got a serious problem.

As Jesus forewarned us millennia ago, the world hates us for His name’s sake. If we stand for Christ, unashamed, unshaken and undeterred, we will have enemies we never knew we had, and more so than we thought possible.

Those among us who insist on seeing the silver lining in every cloud placate themselves with the notion that this is only temporary, that the world will come to its senses, and that one day they will see they misjudged us, and wrongly accused us, and they will apologize and embrace us weeping upon our shoulders for all the wrong they caused us.

Childish dreams for childish Christians who haven’t bothered to read what the Word of God says about the times we’re living in.

The world will not come to its senses, they will not have a moment of epiphany wherein they will realize they misjudged us, nor will they apologize for all the wrongs, because the world will wax worse and worse, and the only surefire expectation we can have is that their attacks will intensify.

There is no room for hope nor is there room for God in a nation bent on Fabian socialism. A God who gives hope, who gives peace, who fills His children with joy is unacceptable to those who would have everyone dependent upon the system, and view the system as the new god.

I feel as though I’ve been saying the following for decades even though it’s only been a handful of years: Persecution is coming! It is at the door, ready to barge in and shock the church out of its slumber into a belated wakefulness. Anchor yourself in Christ today, know what you believe and why you believe it, because when the wave crashes down upon you it will be too late to try and sort it out.

I could sit here and type out random platitudes geared toward making you feel better, but I would be doing you a disservice and being disingenuous in the process. I could encourage you to close your eyes, and not pay any mind to what is going on, or pretend as though it isn’t happening, but given the times, such encouragement would border on the criminal.

Open your eyes to the reality around you, see what is coming, and prepare your heart.

With eyes wide open and faith in God we step into tomorrow not as the ignorant and blind, but as ones who see reality for what it is and are prepared to meet it head on.

God will help those who desire to stand, but many are already waving the white flag of surrender. The battle hasn’t even started, and they’ve already given up the fight.

With love in Christ,
Michael Boldea Jr.

Friday, January 25, 2013

Irreconcilable Differences

One cannot rewrite history at infinitum. No matter how many compliant sheep regurgitate the same obvious lies, no matter how many smiling faces attempt to reassure us simple folk that we’re just too dumb to get what’s really happening, that it’s for our own good, and we just have to shut up and go along with everything, eventually there comes a tipping point wherein people just can’t take it anymore.

You can tell me the sun is shining all you want, but if I get drenched each time I walk outside, there will inevitably come a day when I’ll start to seriously consider whether you are, in fact, insane, or just lying to my face.

Even though I am not physically in America at this time, I still get enough e-mails and read enough news reports to know that things are not as some would like to make them seem. Much as the media would like to spin what’s happening and make us believe we are revisiting the golden era of American capitalism, the e-mails I’m getting are from men and women of all ages and all walks of life asking for prayer to find a job, and be able to put food on their family’s table.

There is a marked difference between reporting something in good faith that later turns out to be false, and intentionally attempting to deceive an entire nation, making them doubt what their eyes are seeing and what they are personally going through.

Of the six e-mails I received asking for prayer for a job over this past weekend, three of them had a variation of the naturally occurring self-doubt which comes upon a man when he is told that everyone’s got more work than they know what to do with, yet they themselves can’t find part time employment to save their lives.

The tension is visible from afar, and as with anything under extreme pressure, it will not take something major to cause it to give way.

We are the camel. All we need is the straw, and it doesn’t help that some, in pursuit of their agenda, are throwing hay bales on our backs.

I find myself spending more time praying that the faith of my brothers and sisters in Christ will not fail than ever before. The truth nobody wants to hear is that we’re just getting started, and we’ve got a long way to go until we come out the other side. Welcome to the valley.

If it’s of any comfort, know that you are not alone in this valley, and as long as we keep our eyes firmly affixed upon Christ Jesus, we will get through it without losing our way. Some will choose to give up along the way, others will try to find shortcuts, others still will give in to their feelings or emotions, and a blessed few will have the Word as a lamp unto their feet, and follow the path faithfully until they reach their destination.

Much as some would like to say otherwise, we choose which camp we belong to, we choose which group we walk with, and due to the choices we make we will either be among the conquered, or the conquerors.

With love in Christ,
Michael Boldea Jr.

Thursday, January 24, 2013

Lord, Teach Us To Pray! Part 217

Prayers of the Old Testament
The Prayer of Elisha continued...

There are countless individuals walking about today who are both barren and unfruitful, fully assured in themselves that it is well with their soul and with their spiritual health. They are so convinced not because the Bible told them, but because some guy belonging to some denomination insisted that the Word of God was subject to interpretation, and though it clearly says something different, we can pretend it says what we want it to say.

In order to understand just how horrible a thing it is for a child of God to be barren and unfruitful, we must go back to the Word of God and discover what becomes of an unfruitful tree, or a tree which refuses to produce fruit.

Luke 3:9, “And even now the ax is laid to the root of the trees. Therefore every tree which does not bear good fruit is cut down and thrown into the fire.”

This is the end result of those who do not mature in Christ; those who do not grow from grace to grace and faith to faith, who having been purged from their old sins continue to remain in a state of spiritual blindness, apathy, impotence and atrophy. God plants us in His garden so we might produce good fruit. Being fruitful is not optional, it is not contingent on whether we have time for it or not, we either bear good fruit, or are cut down and thrown into the fire.

The spiritually blind among God’s people cannot see the consequences of fruitlessness as they are, and so they squander the time they’ve been given, and continue to put off being fruitful until it’s too late. When the ax has swung, and the root has been severed, it’s already too late.

When our eyes are opened it is a given that we will see more than what we had seen up until then. When God opens our eyes and we are able to peer beyond the veil of the physical into the realm of the supernatural, it changes our entire outlook, and gives us a new courage and a new boldness as we journey toward eternity.

Hoping God is with us is very different than seeing His armies encamped around us, ready to defend us and do battle on our behalf.

Elisha prayed and his servant’s eyes were opened. From that moment forward we see this servant neither fearful nor apprehensive, because he now saw what the man of God had been seeing all along.

If you are fearful for tomorrow, if you are doubtful of God’s presence in your life, pray for God to open your eyes to the reality surrounding you.

Oftentimes we get so caught up in praying for other people’s eyes to be opened that we forget to pray for our own eyes to be opened. It is good and noble and godly to be concerned about others, but we must not forget, we must also work out our own salvation with fear and trembling.

If fear is creeping up on you, if you are beginning to question whether God can get you through a certain predicament, then pray for yourself as Elisha prayed for his servant, and you will see the shift in perception necessary to understand just how many angels have been dispatched on your behalf.

When we see the extent to which God goes to protect us, we also come to realize our true value and worth in God’s eyes.

The horses and chariots of fire are not exclusive to Elisha and those who are called to greater service, but to all the children of God, all who have been saved, sanctified, and cleansed by the power of the blood of Christ Jesus.

How did I come to this conclusion?

By understanding the beautiful truth that God is no respecter of persons. God does not esteem one servant above another, and so if the chariots and horses of fire were present in defense of Elisha, they will likewise be present in defense of you and I when and if the time comes.

We all need spiritual insight, and when we receive it is as important as that we receive it. Everyone eventually learns of the reality of the spiritual world, but for some it will be too late. It is while we have breath, while we are still animated and have life coursing through us that we must pray – and diligently so – for God to open our eyes so we might see the spiritual realities surrounding us, and understand how much God does on our behalf in regards to protecting us and keeping us from being vanquished by the enemy.

One glimpse of the chariots of fire, and we will never again doubt God’s ability to keep us, or the extent of His love for those who have denied themselves, picked up their crosses, and followed after His Son Jesus.

There will always be more with us than there are with them. We will always be in the majority even if in the physical the opposite is true. The world cannot see, therefore the world mocks. We, the children of God can see, and so we rejoice in Him, praise His name, and worship Him. His faithfulness abides, it remains ever true, and just as the hosts of heaven defended and protected Elisha and his servant, they stand at the ready to do the same on our behalf.

With love in Christ,
Michael Boldea Jr.

Wednesday, January 23, 2013

Lord, Teach Us To Pray! Part 216

Prayers of the Old Testament
The Prayer of Elisha continued...

Faith is another way by which we can entreat God to open our spiritual eyes. God responds to faith, and when we possess faith that He will open our eyes, He does so in the most amazing of ways.

Hebrews 11:13, “These all died in faith not having received the promises, but having seen them afar off were assured of them, embraced them and confessed that they were strangers and pilgrims on the earth.”

Who is this passage speaking of? Are they some negligible figures in church history which we could readily discount? This verse is referring to such titans of the faith as Abraham, Noah, Enoch, Jacob, Joseph, Moses, Isaac, and it tells us they saw the promises from afar off, were assured of them, and embraced them by faith.

Because these individuals had spiritual perception, because they saw within the spiritual realm, they died in the faith not having received the promises, yet, nevertheless having seen them afar off.

What we see by faith and through the prism of the spiritual is always more valuable than what we see in the physical, tangible world. In the selfsame aforementioned chapter, the author of Hebrews confirms this reality reminding us of Moses, and how he chose to suffer affliction with the people of God than enjoy the passing pleasures of sin.

The Word tells us Moses esteemed the reproach of Christ greater riches than the treasures in Egypt, because he looked to the reward.

If we take this affirmation to its rightful end, we can’t help but conclude that the reward which God has prepared for the faithful far outshines the treasures of ancient Egypt itself. By faith and through the prism of spiritual sight we know what awaits us beyond this life, and gladly forfeit the pleasures of this passing world for the enduring world to come.

The Bible also tells us that we live by faith and not by sight. You don’t need to have faith in regards to the physical world, and the things you can see with your physical eyes. They are there; you can feel them, touch them, see them, taste them and hear them. One does not need faith that their car exists because they open the door, they sit in the seat, and they turn the key.

The spiritual realm is another matter entirely. Because we cannot see the spiritual with physical eyes, we need faith which enables us to see the spiritual with spiritual eyes.

When we pray in faith for God to open our spiritual eyes, He does so in various ways. Sometimes God will even use suffering to open our eyes to the spiritual realities around us as he did with Job. However God chooses to open our eyes, we must rest in the knowledge that it is the best way for us as individuals.

There are benefits to having spiritual insight which go beyond the ability to see horses and chariots of fire. When our spiritual eyes are open and functioning properly we know we are walking in the will of God, and on the narrow path of righteousness He set out for us.

Sin leads to spiritual blindness. When sin is allowed to remain and reside in one’s heart, our spiritual vision begins to erode and given enough time become nonexistent.

2 Corinthians 4:3-4, “But even if our gospel is veiled, it is veiled to those who are perishing, whose minds the god of this age has blinded, who do not believe, lest the light of the gospel of the glory of Christ, who is the image of God, should shine on them.”

The absence of spiritual light, or the absence of the light of the gospel of the glory of Christ keeps us from seeing the path God has set before us, as well as He who is waiting for us beyond the finish line, prize in hand.

Whenever we run across those for whom the gospel is veiled, we have a tendency to try and reason out the gospel with them, and attempt to convince them of their need for salvation on an evidentiary and logical plain.

Although sometimes the message gets through, most often, because their minds are blinded by the god of this age, they reject our appeals our invitations and our claims regarding Jesus. One cannot receive the light of the gospel unless their eyes are first opened to the light of the gospel. Before trying to convince someone of the spiritual reality all around them, our time would be far better spent in first bending our knee and praying as Elisha did that their eyes be opened so they might see.

Since what those who are perishing are suffering from is a spiritual matter, their remedy must likewise be of a spiritual nature. We can philosophize and theorize, we can explain and do so with eloquence, but until the spiritual issue isn’t settled, until they are not spiritually ready to receive the light, it is all for naught.

Even the saved run the risk of having their spiritual vision diminished if they do not continually and consistently grow in Christ.

2 Peter 1:5-9, “But also for this very reason, giving all diligence, add to your faith virtue, to virtue knowledge, to knowledge self-control, to self-control perseverance, to perseverance godliness, to godliness brotherly kindness, and to brotherly kindness love. For if these things are yours and abound, you will neither be barren nor unfruitful in the knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ. For he who lacks these things is short-sighted, even to blindness, and has forgotten that he was purged from his old sins.”

I realize full well this Scripture passage falls under the category of ‘most would rather it didn’t exist,’ but it does, it is there, and since the word of God is not a buffet where we can pick and choose what we like, we must contend with this passage and others like it as well.

With love in Christ,
Michael Boldea Jr.

Tuesday, January 22, 2013

Lord, Teach Us To Pray! Part 215

Prayers of the Old Testament
The Prayer of Elisha continued...

Elisha’s prayer did not make the horses and chariots of fire appear. They were already there and had been long before the servant’s eyes were opened. What happened upon Elisha’s prayer was that the servant’s eyes were opened to the spiritual reality surrounding them.

The angels of the Lord already encamp around those who fear Him. The horses and chariots of fire already surround the saints of God. It is we who must have our eyes opened to the already present reality.

No, this is neither splitting hairs, nor is it semantics. There is a distinction and marked difference between having one’s eyes opened to what is already there, and making something appear as though out of nowhere.

The reason this distinction is important is because the angels of the Lord are perpetually about, perpetually guarding, keeping, and protecting the children of God. We’re not dialing 9-1-1 when surrounded by the enemy, hoping the angels of the Lord make it on time. They’re already there, encamped, and awaiting orders. We have fulltime, round-the-clock protection, guardian angels that are always about.

‘Do not fear, for those who are with us are more than those who are with them.’

Whenever you feel outnumbered, whenever you feel discouraged, whenever you feel as though it’s you against the world, just remember those who are with you are more than those who are with the darkness.

It is this knowledge that keeps us from being fearful and flinching in the face of the enemy. It is the knowledge that the hosts of heaven encamp around us and the horses and chariots of fire stand at the ready which compels us to hold the line, press forward, and not give the enemy an inch of ground.

Ultimately, the battle belongs to the Lord. It is only when we lose sight of this universal truth and begin to think we can fight the fight and win the battle on our own that we begin to suffer defeats and setbacks.

Elisha knew he was no match for the Syrian army. He knew in and of himself he could do nothing, but he also knew the God he served and he saw the armies of the Lord dispatched on his behalf.

There was no way for Elisha to explain what he was seeing to his servant. There was no way for Elisha to make his servant understand there was no reason for fear or trepidation, unless the servant’s eyes were likewise opened to the reality of the spiritual all around them.

We can try to explain why we do not fear for tomorrow to friends and family alike, we can try to explain why there is no concern or trepidation in regards to all that’s going on around us, but our explanations will always fall short. It is only when God opens the spiritual eyes of those we pray for that they too will be at peace and at rest.

It would be easy for us to believe only others need their spiritual eyes opened, but oftentimes we ourselves need our spiritual eyes opened as well. Even though we like to think the best of ourselves, and believe wholeheartedly that we’ve reached the pinnacle of spirituality, there are moments in our walk and lives wherein we also need our spiritual eyes to be opened so we might truly see.

Seeing as spiritual insight – or having supernatural perception – is an important aspect of our spiritual walk, what are the ways by which God can open our eyes so we might see the spiritual realm?

The first way we can entreat God to open our spiritual eyes is the selfsame way Elisha entreated God to open his servant’s eyes, by prayer.

If you feel as though you are not seeing all the wondrous things of God, if you feel as though your spiritual eyes are not open or focused, then pray. Ask God to open your eyes, and He will open them.

Psalm 119:18, “Open my eyes, that I may see wondrous things from Your law.”

Spiritual myopia or spiritual blindness should be unacceptable for us as believers. When we fail to see the hand of God at work, when we fail to see God working and moving on our behalf, our first impulse should be to fall to our knees in prayer so God might open our eyes.

As was the case with the horses and chariots of fire, it’s not that God isn’t working; it’s that we’re not seeing Him working.

The issue is our vision and our ability to see.

When our spiritual eyesight is lacking we will take what God does on our behalf and either claim the glory ourselves, or pass it off as nothing more than chance or happenstance. We will not see the truth of what is there because our perception is skewed and not in tune with the spiritual.

It is when God opens our eyes as he did the eyes of Elisha’s servant that we begin to see just how much God does on our behalf, all the doors He opens, and the opportunities He brings across our path. It is only when we have eyes to see that we see the goodness of the Lord and the wondrous things He does.

A believer whose eyes have been opened is a thankful and grateful believer because they see the presence and power of God in their lives. Because they see the presence and power of God, they learn to trust Him implicitly, even when in the physical things don’t seem to be working, or are going from bad to worse.

Spiritual eyesight, the ability to see the hand of God and the spiritual realm, matures us in the Lord and draws us ever closer to the love, peace, joy and fulfillment only Christ can give.

We see God’s hand upon us, upon our lives, upon our families, upon our provision, and we can’t help but cry out to Him with thankful hearts and humble spirits.

With love in Christ,
Michael Boldea Jr.

Sunday, January 20, 2013

The Burden of Knowing

Nowadays, some things have become so obvious even the spiritually obtuse are beginning to see them. Granted, those whose eyes are beginning to open are the selfsame individuals who mocked and ridiculed those warning of these days long before they were visible, but not everyone matures at the same pace, and some just take longer to come to terms with what they are seeing than others.

Like any terminal disease, the sin ravaging this nation is beginning to weaken the host. The weaker the host gets, the quicker the disease is able to do what it does, and so the pace of destruction is accelerated exponentially. Every terminal disease has one singular purpose: to destroy its host.

Make no mistake, sin is a terminal disease. It is a disease only repentance and the blood of Christ can cure, and since Jesus has become anathema, and fewer folks than ever before know what repentance means, the death of the host is only a matter of time.

Throughout it all there have been those who would not defile themselves. Throughout it all there have been those who guarded their hearts, obeyed the word of God rather than the words of men, and anchored their faith in Jesus, knowing He was the only safe harbor in the storm to come.

It is from these selfsame individuals that I’ve started getting a considerable amount of correspondence, all asking the same question, just wording it differently.

The following is an e-mail forwarded to me by our office which encapsulates the question I am referring to quite nicely, and since the office didn’t forward an e-mail address, I will answer the question in this post.

Aloha, Pastor Boldea,

I'll keep this short because I know you are very busy...

First some encouragement: I've been reading your blog and listening to your teaching series for several months now; thank you SO much for your faithfulness in pressing on regardless of opposition. I'm sure I'm not the only one being edified, encouraged, convicted and taught through HOH.

The weariness you spoke of? I have felt the same weariness...Wondering if there is anyone who will pray - who is praying and seeking God without any other agenda but to cry out to Him. Where we live, it is spiritually dead. Stagnant complacency and well-ordered programs run the church buildings here. With all humbleness I say that I was privileged to have grown up in the presence of the Lord, seeing the pattern of intercession leading to true repentance, and waiting on the Spirit to direct the service and experiencing such precious times. My heart aches for my kids because I want my children to know His Presence, to know what worship really is - not this praise and worship musical performance we see today. We don't want our kids to grow up believing what they see in church is what following Christ is about, so we simply have home church.

My question is if one of your future posts or recordings could be for those of us who DO see reality and are heartbroken... What is our part in this time? Obviously to pray and intercede, but many times I am at a loss on HOW to pray. Can we pray that there be a mighty revival that shakes this nation - like Argentina experienced in the '50s? Or is the time for repentance and revival sealed up now? Does this question even make sense?

May the Lord continue to lead you and grant you His wisdom,

Anna

The essence of the question is this: Knowing what we now, what is our responsibility toward God? What do we do in light of the times we are living in, and what does God expect of us?

Before we get into God’s expectations of us in times such as these, I feel as though a disclaimer is in order.

For some time now the household of faith has found it difficult to differentiate and separate general doctrine from personal convictions. There are certain general truths which apply to the entirety of the Body, and there are personal convictions which apply to individuals.

Today we will be discussing the general truths, those things which apply across the board to the entire Body of Christ.

This is important because some are called of God to a specific task, commanded to do a certain thing, then take it upon themselves to make general doctrine of their personal convictions.

Coldhearted as the following might sound, we are saved as individuals and not as a collective. As such, there comes a time when we must, as individuals, work out our own salvation with fear and trembling. Although the following is a list of general truths, it is still incumbent upon us to do them as individuals. They are in no particular order, but if we are honest with ourselves we will assign the appropriate place to each one depending upon our predispositions.

1. Learn to hear the voice of God clearly, for yourself, without surrogates or proxies.

2. Be established in your heart, and know the promises of God for you.

3. Be equipped to lead, be humble enough to serve.

4. Pray for repentance in lieu of revival, for there can be no revival without repentance.

5. Strip your heart of preconceived notions in regards to how and when, just believe that God will!

6. Give up the illusion of control and surrender your heart to God in its totality.

7. Search your heart diligently, and do away with anything that does not bring glory to God.

8. Live what you preach!

9. Don’t get distracted by what others do. Follow Jesus and Him alone.

10. Live with the expectation that you will be persecuted and purpose in your heart to remain faithful to the end.

Although I could readily expound upon any of these ten things at length, I believe wholeheartedly those who desire wisdom, will understand exactly what I was trying to say with each point.

Our duty as believers – whatever calling God has called us to – is to be living epistles of Christ, and living testimonies of what Jesus does in a heart that receives Him.

God grants us knowledge of what is to come not as a burdensome thing, but as an encouragement, because if He already knows what tomorrow holds, then He’s already made preparations for you and me and all who belong to Him.

With love in Christ,
Michael Boldea Jr.

Friday, January 18, 2013

Reality Check Part 8

Part eight of this series is up. Two more to go until this series is done. Thanks for watching and God bless.
With love in Christ,
Michael Boldea Jr.


                                         Reality Check Part 8

Thursday, January 17, 2013

Lord, Teach Us To Pray! Part 214

Prayers of the Old Testament
The Prayer of Elisha continued...

2 Kings 6:17, “And Elisha prayed, and said, ‘Lord, I pray, open his eyes that he may see.’ Then the Lord opened the eyes of the young man, and he saw. And behold, the mountain was full of horses and chariots of fire all around Elisha.”

Elisha’s prayer consisted of no more than ten words but the outcome and end result of his prayer was truly glorious. In reading Elisha’s life story and all God did through him, we come to realize Elisha’s unshakeable faith in regards to God not only hearing his prayers, but moving on his behalf and answering his prayers as well.

Whether to blind the Syrian army, to return their sight to them, or to open the eyes of his servant, Elisha’s prayers were neither long nor elaborate, but they were full of faith in God’s ability to answer them, and His willingness to do so.

If you’ve ever thought that ‘the prayers of a righteous man avails much’ seemed a bit abstract, now you know what ‘much’ means.

If we take the prayer of Elisha at face value, we come to understand that the prayers of a righteous man can open the spiritual eyes of men, blind the physical eyes of men, and open the physical eyes of men once more, among many, many other things.

If we begin to ponder the implications of Elisha’s prayer and what the servant seeing the horses and chariots of fire means for us as believers, we enter a whole new sphere of wisdom and understanding which many today choose to overlook.

One of the most amazing truths we glean from Elisha’s prayer and the opening of his servant’s eyes is confirmation of the reality of the existence of the spiritual realm.

Elisha’s servant saw with physical eyes, and was understandably frightened. After Elisha prayed, he saw with spiritual eyes and understood that they were not alone.

What the servant saw with his physical eyes was not wrong. It was the physical reality of the time, and any other individual would have seen the army surrounding the city. What we must understand is that spiritual reality is just as real as physical reality. It is man who lacks the ability to see spiritual reality as readily as he sees the physical.

Just because those of the world cannot see the spiritual it does not make it any less real. The fact that I’ve never seen my own heart does not make it any less real, and though I have never seen it I am certain of its existence.

The antidote for fear of the physical for God’s children is the ability to peer into the spiritual. Those of the world fear many things, but we as children of God ought not to fear anything or anyone other than God. We are not afraid even though everything in the physical tells us we ought to be, because we know as Elisha did that the horses and chariots of fire are all around us.

For many believers fear has the stopping power of a rifle. Due to fear they become paralyzed, immobile, and as they delay in their obedience toward God, the fear in them only intensifies and takes on new proportions. Some individuals come to the point of fearing everything, seeing what isn’t there, searching for evil in the shadows, because their focus is no longer on the God they serve but on the fear they allowed to take root in their heart. When we fail to see the supernatural around us, fear of the natural is a foregone conclusion.

When we fail to look upon our circumstances with spiritual eyes, we have a tendency to feel abandoned and alone, one against a thousand. We see ourselves surrounded, we see ourselves buffeted on all sides, without any means of escape or forward motion.

It is only when God opens our eyes and we see the reality of the supernatural that we are strengthened and our hearts rejoice in the knowledge that there are more with us then there are with the enemy, and it will always be thus.

No matter what odds we are facing, no matter how loudly the enemy rages against us, we rest in the knowledge that the hosts of heaven surround us and encamp around us and they are far more numerous than anything the enemy can muster.

The question is not whether or not the hosts of heaven are present. The only question of import and relevance is do we see them?

The angels of the Lord encamp around those who fear Him. They are always present and they are always there. The germane issue is whether we see them or not.

The servant of Elisha only saw what was before his physical eyes, but Elisha had already seen the horses and chariots of fire and this is why he was not afraid.

When we know God is with us, when we know God is on our side, we are fearless no matter who stands against us. Because the world cannot see what we see, because the world does not know what we know, our actions might be seen as mad, foolish, or absent reason.

The world will always judge the children of God based on what it sees and not based on what the children of God see. The world judges us only seeing the mass of enemies encamped all around us, but failing to see the armies of the Lord likewise encamped all around us.

Seeing as we see, and knowing what we know, we cannot be swayed by the cries of the world, or their insistence that we are the ones who are blind. Because we know those of the world are deficient in their perception we give them no credence, nor do we heed their disdain.

With love in Christ,
Michael Boldea Jr.

Wednesday, January 16, 2013

Lord, Teach Us To Pray! Part 213

Prayers of the Old Testament
The Prayer of Elisha continued...

Throughout the Bible we see not so much what one man can do, but what God can do through one man. It took Elisha a prophet of the Lord to stymie the plans of a king and his entire army. It took one man through which God warned the king of Israel, to wreak havoc and confusion throughout the whole of the Syrian government.

Once he had been informed that Elisha was the source of his troubles, the king of Syria spared no time in sending a great army to surround the city wherein Elisha was rumored to reside.

For anyone else, sending an entire army might have been overkill, but this was the man who spoke the secrets of the king to his sworn enemy as though he had been there the entire time.

Even though the king of Syria did not know the God of Israel, his reaction in sending an entire army after one man betrays his fear both of the man, and of the God he served.

Just as Elisha had been a servant to Elijah, Elisha too now had a servant. As Elisha’s servant arose and went out, to his great surprise he saw the army of the king of Syria encamped all around the city.

2 Kings 6:15, ‘And when the servant of the man of God arose early and went out, there was an army, surrounding the city with horses and chariots. And his servant said to him, ‘Alas, my master! What shall we do?’”

You can tell allot about a man’s faith and walk with God by how he reacts to crisis. Faithless men whose walk with God is superficial have a tendency to panic and overreact when faced with the slightest of crisis. It doesn’t have to be anything gargantuan or immovable, just an obstacle they did not foresee for faithless men to act as though it was the end of the world.

Not much is said about Elisha’s servant in Scripture, but by his reaction to the Syrian armies we realize his faith was no on par with that of his master.

2 Kings 6:16, “So he answered, ‘Do not fear, for those who are with us are more than those who are with them.’”

No hesitation, no doubt, no apprehension. Elisha’s answer was sure, to the point, and brimming over with faith in the God he served. If we realize what Elisha asked of his servant, we likewise come to realize the leap of faith he asked of him.

What Elisha was essentially saying was ‘don’t believe your eyes, don’t believe what your senses are telling you and what your mind is processing. In spite of what you see, there are more with us than with them.’

Seeing as his servant didn’t call him crazy and run for the hills tells me he understood the spiritual to a certain extent. He also had enough faith in his master’s relationship with God, wherein he accepted his premise even though he could not see it with his physical eyes.

A bond had been established between these two men, and it was evident in the servant’s reaction both in coming to warn Elisha of the armies surrounding them, as well as not calling Elisha mad for insisting more were with them than with the Syrian army when they were just two men.

Rather than try to explain how being spiritually superior Elisha was able to see the armies of heaven and his servant was not, Elisha prayed a prayer on behalf of his servant.

Herein lies another lesson for those who are willing to dig deeper than the surface, in that Elisha did not desire to keep his servant dependent upon him, but prayed for his servant’s spiritual insight and spiritual eyes to be opened.

Any man who insists he is the lone intermediary between you and God and that without him you will never know the fullness of what God has for you is a liar and the truth is not found in him.

These rabid wolves have been multiplying of late, and each portrays himself as the only means by which you will attain understanding and knowledge of the divine.

If a man is not consistent in pointing the way to Jesus and encouraging you to put in the time to form and cement a relationship with God, but rather, insists that you take him at his word, follow him and he’ll take care of the rest, your only viable option is to run. Run hard, run fast, and don’t look back because we have been forewarned time and again of these last days and those who would portray themselves as Christs.

Elisha desired for his servant’s eyes to be opened that he too might see the glory of God and what lengths God would go to, to protect one of His own. Elisha did not want to keep this glorious insight for himself, nor did he think himself special because he was able to see what his servant was as yet unable to see.

As we study the Word we realize this desire for all to experience the power and presence of God in their lives was a common virtue among true servants. Elisha desired for his servant to see what he saw, Moses desired that all would prophecy, because when it comes to the work and presence of God, there can be no selfishness in us.

I’ve met men who treat the gifts and presence of God as though they were their own, and each time it was off-putting and unpleasant. Perhaps such individuals believe that their stature is elevated due to the gifts that have been entrusted to them or they think they are somehow more special than their fellow brothers and sisters in Christ, but whatever the reason they exhibit proprietary tendencies which cannot be found in the Bible.

True men of God are givers by nature. They don’t hold back, they don’t try to parcel out the truth piecemeal, they desire that all would come to the knowledge of truth, all would experience the fullness of God in their lives, and all would walk in the authority of the Holy Spirit.

With love in Christ,
Michael Boldea Jr.

Tuesday, January 15, 2013

Lord, Teach Us To Pray! Part 212

Prayers of the Old Testament
The Prayer of Elisha continued...

Elisha was called upon to follow and serve Elijah, and he did so faithfully until it was his turn to take up the mantle of the one he served and be the mouthpiece of God for that time.

God called Elisha not from an Ivy League school, not from the most renowned of seminaries, not from some monastery up in the crevices of a mountainside, but from the field where he worked as a plowman.

If God calls you, God will equip you. If God equips you, then you have all the necessary tools to perform the task and duty to which you have been called. It’s that simple. Men complicate it.

Formally educated Elisha was not, but he was a man of prayer who had God’s ear, and who saw the power of God time and again due to his obedience.

Since Elisha was a man of prayer it was difficult to choose just one of his prayers for our discussion, but I finally settled upon one which stands out to me due to its implications.

The king of Syria was bent on war. He had gone from the planning stages to actually dispatching his soldiers, and hoping to set a trap for the army of Israel. He had taken counsel with his generals, sought out the most advantageous terrain, and all that was left was the battle itself wherein the king of Syria was certain victory would be his.

One eventuality the king of Syria did not prepare for was that Israel’s army simply wouldn’t show up where he had expected them to. Israel’s army wasn’t where the king of Syria expected it to be not because it was delayed, or because the march took longer than expected, but because they had been forewarned of the snare prepared for them.

Understandably the heart of the king of Syria was greatly troubled because the only conclusion he could come to was that he had a traitor in his inner circle…one who had breathed the plans of his attack to his sworn enemy.

2 Kings 6:11, “Therefore the heart of the king of Syria was greatly troubled by this thing; and he called his servants and said to them, ‘Will you not show me which of us is for the king of Israel?’”

The only logical conclusion the king of Syria could come to, was that one of his own was a spy. How else could Israel have known of his plans? How else could the army of Israel have known not to be where they were supposed to be, and where an ambush was waiting for them?

Because the king of Syria neither knew nor understood the God of Israel, or that God had prophets in the land, it came as a total surprise to him when one of his subordinates informed him that Elisha the prophet was to blame for the failure of his armies to engage the Israelites.

2 Kings 6:12, “And one of his servants said, ‘None, my lord, O king; but Elisha, the prophet who is in Israel, tells the king of Israel the words that you speak in your bedroom.’”

With the advent of listening devices, microphones and other apparatus, the notion that someone could be relating what you speak in your bedroom to another ought not to come as such a surprise. To anyone of Elisha’s time it would have been the greatest of shock.

Due to our technologically advanced generation, certain extraordinary events within the word of God escape us. We reason things out based on the world we live in and not the world that was, and so, having Elisha tell the king of Israel the words the king of Syria spoke in his bedroom doesn’t seem like that great of an accomplishment. Since in this case the contextualization of the time does matter, the king of Syria was so disturbed by the notion that Elisha knew what he said in his own bedroom, he sent men to get him.

2 Kings 6:13-14, “So he said, ‘Go and see where he is, that I may send and get him.’ And it was told him, saying, ‘Surely he is in Dothan.’ Therefore he sent horses and chariots and a great army there, and they came by night and surrounded the city.”

The first obvious question at this juncture is why didn’t God warn Elisha about the Syrian king’s plans as He had warned him in the past, and thus avoid the entire drama to begin with?

Why does God – in certain instances – warn us of impending trouble so we might avert, avoid, or otherwise sidestep it, and why does He sometimes allow us to go through it?

The short answer, although few today want to hear it, is for His glory!

God allows us to go through trials, afflictions, and yes, even tribulations for His glory. As we will see by the end of this moment in time, if Elisha had not stayed where he was, and if the Syrian army had not surrounded Dothan as they did, the glory of God would not have been made manifest, and the name of the God of Israel would not have been magnified throughout the nations.

Although we can run ourselves ragged trying to figure out God’s mind and understand certain seasons in our lives, it is far easier and far wiser to trust in His omnipotence, and know He has a reason and a purpose for all He does and all He allows.

No, we might not see how a certain setback, hardship, ailment or even loss might bring glory to His name, but we trust He does, and whether later in this life, or in the life to come, it will be made clear to us as well. We will one day see the plan of God in its entirety, and praise His name evermore for His faithfulness and holiness.

With love in Christ,
Michael Boldea Jr.

Sunday, January 13, 2013

But For The Grace of God

Many people I know love to watch ‘fails’ on YouTube. One can’t help but smile when an overly confident teenager misses kicking the ball completely, and falls on his rear to the chorus of laughter from his off-screen friends.

There are also compilations of ‘wins’ on the aforementioned YouTube wherein people do the seemingly impossible, whether it’s remaining vertical and on their skateboard after jumping off a ladder, or making the perfect landing after spinning in the air multiple times.

So what does this have to do with anything?

Well, there are times in life when you do something half-right and it turns out really, really well. There are also times in life when you do something as it ought to be done, completely and without cutting any corners, and the end result is a disaster worthy of a YouTube video.

The selfsame thing that happens to us as individuals also happens to nations.

When a nation is under the blessing and providence of God, even when what it does isn’t totally right, or as reason dictates it ought to be done, the end result is good and noble and just. When God removes his blessing, however, no matter how hard we try or how many plans we put in place, things still turn out worse than we thought possible.

Yesterday a friend e-mailed me asking if I knew about the flu pandemic breaking out in America. Since I’ve been busy with the charity side of our work here, I had not gotten caught up on what has been going on in the States. As I started clicking through some articles, and seeing what has been going on the past couple weeks, I couldn’t help but think how truly helpless and impotent we are as individuals and as nations without the blessing and providence of God.

It doesn’t take battleships and rockets and asteroids to bring the whole machine to a screeching halt. It takes something as seemingly innocuous as a germ.

When God’s hand of protection is no longer upon a nation, everything is potentially lethal. It’s like taking an accident prone individual to the world’s biggest cutlery store. You don’t know what’s going to knick him, but you’re pretty sure something will.

In love, God has attempted to turn our hearts back to Him not once, not twice, but on multiple occasions using multiple means. It only took the nation of Israel seeing a cut up bull spontaneously combust on a makeshift altar to cause them to turn their hearts back to the Lord, but with each attempt at reconciliation, with each attempt at extending an olive branch we just slap God’s hand away and act as though he is a nuisance and an unwelcomed presence in our lives.

How many times can a nation turn its back on God and reject Him before He leaves the nation to the desires of its heart? How many times can we shake our fists at God and denounce His very existence before He removes His hedge of protection and by doing nothing more than no longer being for us, shows us the true measure of our impotence?

For anyone given to objective contemplation of recent events, it is undeniable that the worst possible outcome of any given matter has been taking place time and again. From hurricane Sandy, to political decisions, the ongoing drought, to cold snaps, to the virulent outbreak of the flu throughout the nation, it seems that try as we might, nothing seems to be going right.

No, this has nothing to do with odds and probabilities; it has nothing to do with the change in the Chinese calendar; it has to do with our continued rejection of a sovereign God.

No matter how hard we try to stick the landing, we will fail. No matter how hard we try to make it work, we will fall short of the mark. No matter how ingenious man might think himself to be, if God is no longer for him, it’s all folly and futility.

With love in Christ,
Michael Boldea Jr.

Friday, January 11, 2013

It's The End of the World Again!

And right on cue, once more, the end of the world is nigh. No longer are men forewarning of calamitous catastrophe because some guy a few thousand years ago ran out of rock and thus ended his calendar, now it’s an asteroid that will do us in.

As always seem to be the case it isn’t the world that’s going around buying helmets and head gear for fear of space rocks falling on their heads, it’s the church, or those who profess to be of the household of faith.

When we start to believe extra biblical theories in lieu of what the Bible says, we are implicitly denying the Word of God by our very actions.

The Bible tells us the world will not be done in by an asteroid, a meteor, a giant rock, space junk, or whatever else men have been saying. Yes, there will be signs both in the heavens and in the earth, and those signs are already being made manifest if you know where to look.

So what’s my problem with the apocalyptic mindset? Why can’t I just live and let live and allow some good folks to make an honest buck off some titanium helmets? Because these things distract us from our primary purpose as believers, saints of God, and children of the Promise.

Whether it’s 88 reasons why Christ was to return in 1988, Harold’s May 2011 miss, the Mayan calendar, Nibiru, space aliens, black holes, or grandma’s toaster, whatsoever serves to distract us from the pursuit of Christ and living out righteousness and holiness in our daily lives must be summarily rejected and excised.

If the enemy can keep you from growing in Christ, if he can keep you distracted with looking behind every bush and under every rock for either the end of the world or some demonic entity or another, he’s won.

Immature, foundationless individuals will be nothing more than fodder in the days to come, for they will bend with the breeze and break with the pressure, and cause more harm than good due to their duplicitous nature.

I for one do not believe that when the Word tells us the just will live by faith it is to be received as hyperbole or exaggeration. Knowing the just will live by faith, one must conclude that in order to live by faith one must foremost possess faith. This is the battle at this juncture. This is the crux of the issue. This is the linchpin of the entire construct.

The devil knows we will need faith to weather the storm, and as such is doing everything in his power to prevent us from understanding faith, having faith, and growing in faith. The distractions seem to be working, and with each new marker we set looking afar off to a certain date, we’ve squandered that much more time. The utter tragedy is that this is time we could have been spending in prayer, in reading the Word, and in learning to trust God in all things and not just the easy things.

Have you ever had to trust God for sustenance? Not because you were too lazy to get in your car and drive to the local drive-thru place, but because there was nothing to eat, and nowhere to buy food from, and nothing to buy food with.

I realize that in a world glutted with varieties and options having to depend on God for food seems like a stretch, but times change and they change rather quickly and what was once unequaled excess can become dire need overnight.

We either grow in God and learn the benefits of being His own possessing true faith and an unshakeable dependency on Him, or we will despair along with the world when need and lack and scarcity will be the only things on their mind.

With love in Christ,
Michael Boldea Jr.

Thursday, January 10, 2013

Reality Check Part 7

Since part seven of this teaching has been posted to youtube, you get to see it as well whether you like it or not. If I could pray for one thing for professing Christians other than a full knowledge of Christ Jesus, it would be balance in regards to the spiritual in their lives.

There is a tendency - and in recent years it has amplified - to gravitate toward extremes, and become exlusionary of everything else. If we serve a multi-faceted and multi-dimensional God, reason would dictate we pursue and receive more than just one attribute of godliness.

Whether prophecy, deliverance, tongues, healing, or the casting out of demons, when we focus on just one aspect foregoing all the others it becomes dangerous and often times hinders our spiritual walk.

Above all else, if relationship isn't there, nothing's there. If we do not know Jesus in all His glory, majesty, sovereignty and Lordship, we're just flailing at the wind like madmen and attempting to comfort each other with words while the world is spinning out of control.

The preeminent question in the hearts and minds of all who have been straddling the fence, playing church, and serving God for the sake of fire insurance ought to be 'Do you really know Jesus?' and if the answer is no, or if you're not quite sure, you have not a moment to waste because the darkness is here, and is merciless in its intent.

There is a weariness in me that I've not ever felt and it frightens me, because I'm too young to feel this old. Once I was a hopeful man, doing the work of God with the unshakable exepectation of making a difference, and stirring souls to repentance. Now I do the work of God because I understand duty as never before, and though I know most often my words will fall on deaf ears I will continue to do my duty before my God and my King.

And to think this was only supposed to be a two sentence introduction to the latest Reality Check installment.

With love in Christ,
Michael Boldea Jr.

                                         Reality Check Part 7

Tuesday, January 8, 2013

To Arm or Not To Arm!

Since I’m losing friends faster than a hemophiliac with a gunshot wound loses blood, I thought I’d take the day and explain my stance on self-defense, gun ownership, stockpiling ammunition, and all the other things which seem to be distracting the church in lieu of pursuing Christ.

As of late I’ve had more and more people write me asking and sometimes demanding some sort of release or discharge in regards to turning their home into some sort of faux bunker, and using every spare penny to acquire guns and ammunition.

As to why they would need my blessing, sanction or approval, I have my theories. When I refused to give the requisite approbation, explaining at length why I could not, most got angry, and some even accused me of being a sissy.

Throughout the years we’ve added to the gospel, and what was once a clear-cut, unambiguous call to pursue God with single-minded zeal, has morphed into pursuing God, and something else. Whether that something else is denomination, patriotism, nationalism, or hedonism, too few today pursue God alone, and far too many have added to the gospel – each in accordance to their proclivities – so they might force the Word to conform to their will and not the other way around.

Do I believe it is wrong to own a gun? No, I do not believe it is wrong to own a gun. In fact I’ll go a step further and say I believe it is wise to own a gun nowadays.

Do I believe owning guns and ammunition will save you in the coming chaos? Unfortunately, once again the answer is a definitive no.

My issue is not with individuals and families preparing the best way they can. My issue is with placing our trust in the dehydrated beans, canned soup, and weapons rather than in Christ Jesus.

It is easy to hypothesize as to what we will do in a given situation. It is far different when the reality of the situation bears down on us with the weight of a lead boulder.

What we think we will do, and what we will do if faced with the selfsame hypothesis we so readily laid out are often two very different things.

I can only tell you what I know with certainty, and what you do in light of this knowledge will be entirely up to you.

1. I am certain troubling times are forthcoming for the entire planet, and not just America.

2. I am certain the civil unrest which was prophesied almost thirty years ago is on the horizon for America.

3. I am certain that no amount of preparation will shelter or protect us as individuals if our trust, hope, and reliance are not in and upon Christ Jesus our Lord.

4. I am certain true believers will see miracles in the coming days, and will be supernaturally protected, sheltered and provided for.

5. I am certain that those who lose sight of eternity in the coming season will turn their back on God due to their temporal circumstances.

6. I am certain that Jesus is still on the throne, still loves, still saves, and still keeps His promises to those who have denied themselves, picked up their crosses, and followed after Him.

We all make choices, and we all have to live with the choices we make. This is why whether or not you should arm yourself, is a highly personal issue between you, your family, and God. There are too many variables for there to be one blanket answer for everyone, but that doesn’t stop some individuals from bloviating as though their personal choice ought to be enforced as general rule.

Whatever you choose, whether to amass an arsenal big enough to rival an army unit, or remain content with the dull butter knife in your kitchen cupboard, one thing is certain: if Christ is not your all in all, if your hope and trust and reason for living are not tethered in Him, it will all be for naught.

With love in Christ,
Michael Boldea Jr.

Monday, January 7, 2013

If You're Bored With My Ramblings

I don't do this often, but I like to do it once in awhile. If you are bored with my ramblings, or are just looking for something new to read, the following is a list of sites I visit on occasion, peruse, digest and mull over.

Like any good Berean I would encourage you to examine the Scriptures and see if what is said is true.

I've learned to do this consistently no matter who it is, whether I've just run across something they've written, or have known them for years.

The number one person responsible for safeguarding your soul is you, so I pray you be diligent therein.

www.runningfrombabylon.blogspot.com

www.bagsallpacked.blogspot.com

www.stevequayle.com

www.handofhelp.com

With love in Christ,
Michael Boldea Jr.

Sunday, January 6, 2013

Reality Check Parts 5 & 6

Since some of you seem to be enjoying these teachings, I will continue to post them on the blog, at least until this teaching series is concluded. We will get back to the prayer series shortly, but for now I pray you are edified, encouraged, challenged, and strengthened by these short teachings.

With love in Christ,
Michael Boldea Jr.


                                         Reality Check Part 5

                                         Reality Check Part 6

Friday, January 4, 2013

Our Radio Schedule!

Beginning on January 7th we will be on the following stations, in the following markets, at the following times. If you live in the area, please tune in. If not, you can visit our broadcast channel on Joystream radio.

I will include the link. God bless you all.

With love in Christ,
Michael Boldea Jr.

Omaha Nebraska
KLNG Tues Wed 6:30-6:45 PM

Chattanooga Tennessee
WLMR Tues Thurs 1:30-1:45 PM

Asheville North Carolina
WSKY Wed Fri 7:45-8:00 AM

Augusta Georgia
WFAM Wed Fri 8:15-8:30 PM

Greenville South Carolina
WELP Tues Wed 3:45-4:00 PM

Albuquerque New Mexico
KXKS Tues Thurs 7:30-7:45 PM

York Pennsylvania
WYYC Mon Wed 7:00-7:15 AM

Pensacola Florida
WNVY 5:30-5:45 PM

Tupelo Mississippi
WCPC Wed Fri 5:30-5:45 PM

Alexandria Louisiana
KWDF Thurs Fri 12:15-12:30 PM

Shreveport Louisiana
KIOU Thurs Fri 5:45-6:00 PM

Huntsville Alabama
WBXR Tues Wed 1:15-1:30 PM

The link to our 24/7 broadcast channel on Joystream radio:
Hand of Help Channel


Wednesday, January 2, 2013

They Called It Propaganda

When one is a student of history they come to realize it’s all circular and cyclical. True, undefiled, unbridled originality – especially in politics – died a quiet and unannounced death sometime between Christopher Columbus discovering the Americas, and the invention of the automobile.

Men realized it is far easier to recycle old clich├ęs than sit around a table and brainstorm new and original ideas. Another thing they realized is that in order to fool the simple folks like you and me they had to redefine certain key words to make them more palatable.

What used to be called propaganda is now being called ‘the narrative’ and with the help of a complicit media the narrative is like an ever advancing bulldozer flattening dissenting opinions wherever some foolish or courageous soul ventures to make them known.

Let’s face it, mankind in general suffers from attention deficit, and to make matters worse we get bored easy. Sure, the first time we hear something ludicrous and completely idiotic being spouted by one of the talking heads on television our ire is stirred and we mumble a few words between bites of Chinese takeout, but then a second fool and a third fool parrots the words of the first fool, and well, we’ve got jobs to go to and kids to feed and mortgages to keep up with.

Although ‘the narrative’ sounds much kinder and gentler than propaganda does, make no mistake, be ye not fooled, it is still propaganda.

Propaganda is defined as information of a biased or misleading nature, used to promote or publicize a particular political cause or point of view. If you watch more than ten minutes of news on any given day, you will readily identify propaganda being regurgitated time and again.

The purpose of propaganda is as simple as it is sinister: to cause you to doubt your own eyes, your own ears, your own reasoning, and bring you ever so gently into the fold. In essence, to make you just another faceless worker bee who has no opinion other than what he’s told his opinion ought to be, and who voluntarily puts on the shackles of captivity.

At this point some may just be rolling their eyes thinking I’ve gone off the deep end, but having lived through indoctrination, having lived through programming and propaganda, let’s just say I know of what I speak.

Once the hooks are in and the narrative creators or propaganda pimps have a majority, any dissent, any voicing of an opposing idea is met with swift and unbridled violence.

Perhaps one of the most sinister and as yet largely overlooked aspects of propaganda purveyors is that if they can’t get you, they will gladly settle for your children.

Everyone in our village knew that my parents and grandparents were believers, and that their relationship with God went far beyond the superficial. As such they didn’t bother too much with them, but for four hour each day for the time I went to school in Romania, my education consisted of me being told by one adult or another that there was no God.

So why am I bothering to pick at old scabs and talk about these things? I guess because somebody has to. Anyone who’s lived in a Communist country or under an oppressive totalitarian regime is getting a bit antsy if not downright squirrely, because they’re seeing a repeat of history, and not the nice parts.

Know this: we cannot avoid persecution through silence forever.

With love in Christ,
Michael Boldea Jr.

Tuesday, January 1, 2013

A Blessed New Year

Since happiness seems to be in short supply nowadays, I thought it best not to go that route but rather, sincerely, wholeheartedly, and from the depths of my being wish you and yours a blessed New Year.

May God keep you, protect you, guide you, sustain you, fill you, comfort you, counsel you, and yes, bless you as well.

With love in Christ,
Michael Boldea Jr.