Gather the Outcasts

Check out our web site for upcoming events, audio messages, pictures of mission trips, and other contact information.

Saturday, December 29, 2012

Blessings for the New Year 2013

Dear Beloved:  As we approach the turning of the calendar and the beginning of the New Year 2013, many are looking forward not with anticipation, but with anxiety and trepidation to the coming year.  The events in America that brought many to their knees at the end of 2012, the worst storm in the history of this country, followed shortly thereafter by one of the most horrific killings in American history, have made us all tense and feeling as if we are looking over the edge of a cliff.  And if that were not enough, now we have another cliff to worry about, the so called "fiscal cliff", that could further burden all Americans with increased taxes and possible job layoffs in the days ahead.  With all that to cheer us on and propel us into the new year, it's no wonder people are reaching for the medicine cabinet more to try to find a cure for their headache or ulcer.  Is their any hope in this world for joy, peace, or happiness?

Jesus made it clear to His disciples that in the end days the only peace to be found in the world would be found in Him.  John 14:27 "Peace I leave with you; My peace I give to you; not as the world gives, do I give to you.  Let not your heart be troubled, nor let it be fearful."  And again in John 16:33 "These things I have spoken to you, that in Me you may have peace.  In the world you have tribulation, but take courage, I have overcome the world."  Jesus spoke about abiding in His love and in His words, that the abiding presence of Him in our life would give us the joy that we are looking for, as well as become the avenue through which we can ask God for the blessings in our life that the world cannot give to us. John 15:7 "If you abide in Me, and My words abide in you, ask whatever you wish, and it shall be done for you v8 By this My Father is glorified, that you bear much fruit, and so prove to be My disciples.  v9 Just as the Father has loved Me, I have also loved you; abide in My love."  Then He concludes this part of His teaching to the disciples by saying in doing these things, their joy would be made full.  v11 "These things I have spoken to you, that My joy may be in you, and that your joy may be made full."  So we see that the way to overcome the world, to defeat the fear and trouble and sorrow that is gripping the world, is to abide in the presence and Word of the living and loving Lord and Savior of all mankind, Jesus Christ.

As a preacher of God's word and one who also carries the prophetic mantle, I can safely predict what is coming in the year ahead:  expect more of the same and even increased tribulation and troubled waters.  The events of the past are a harbinger of the things to come.  I have written extensively of dreams and visions given to me by the Lord concerning the future of America, please look in the archives, mostly in the spring of 2010 for some of these postings on this blog. Beloved, the only hope for you and I in this world is in Jesus, the Overcomer, through whom we can have peace and joy.  He shed His precious blood on the cross at Calvary so we could have victory over the curse of this world.  Submit to Him today, 2013 could be the greatest year for you ever, God wants to take you to higher realms of glory, that you would bring glory to His name and reap the blessings!  May God bless you as you walk with Him boldly into the New Year.  In Christ, Jim     

Sunday, December 16, 2012

Time of Sorrows Revisited

Dear beloved: Jesus told the disciples who were questioning Him about the end times scenarios in Matthew chapter 24, that there would be coming a time of sorrows, or a time of birth pangs.  These sorrows would be characterized by these events: that many would be coming in the name of Jesus to deceive the masses, saying, I am the Christ, and there would also be wars, rumors of wars, and nation would rise against nation, and kingdom against kindom; and there shall be famines, and pestilences, and earthquakes, in diverse places.  What we have witnessed in the past week take place in one of our nation's elementary schools has certainly reminded us once again that we are in the time of sorrows, the collective pain and anguish felt by all Americans of conscience has taken the breath out of each of us.  Our prayers and sympathy go out for each and every family, friend, and loved one of all the victims of the Sandy Hook school shooting, may God bless and strengthen them with the comfort of the Holy Spirit as only He is able in the days ahead.

There will be many solutions offered up to try to turn the wave of violence that is sweeping our nation, most of it centered around taking the guns and ammunition away from people, and even far-reaching solutions such as metal detectors and fortifying every school, campus, and meeting place in America.  Can you imagine, Americans being held prisoner in their own land, not by an outside enemy, but by the demons of hate, murder, and rage, that we have allowed knowingly and willingly into our land, through the cesspool of filth and moral depravity that masquerades as entertainment in television, movies, and video games?  Kingdom is certainly rising up against kingdom, just as Jesus predicted, only the kingdoms are not earthly ones, it is the kindom of darkness and evil verses the Kingdom of Light.  The mayor of Sandy Hook declared that "evil has visited our community", he certainly got that right, but it has been visiting for a long time now, and evil is announcing that we are taking over.

When a nation gives its schools and its children over to the wanton pleasures of the flesh and has no regard for the Word of God, nor any fear of God in the laws that they pass or the moral stance that they take, then the outcome for the children is quite predictable.  When God and moral values are not taught in the schools, when total rebellion towards God is taught in the form of promotion of abortion,(the murder of children in the womb before they get to elementary school), when homosexual perversion is openly promoted by the highest officials and even some church leaders, then God has no choice but to give us over to judgment.  Whenever the devil is given an opportunity to come in and take territory, he will certainly be more than happy to do that.  Psalm 11:3 If the foundations be destroyed, what can the righteous do?  Beloved, there is only one thing the righteous can do, get down on our knees and cry out for mercy, for mercy is all that is going to spare us from the wrath of God.  v7 For the Lord is righteous; He loves righteousness; The upright will behold His face.  Beloved, cry out for mercy, pray for your church and elected leaders, share the hope of the gospel, that is the only hope for this nation, there is no other.  May God bless you as you pray this day, in Christ, Jim

Saturday, December 8, 2012

Antidote for Holiday Despair

Dear beloved:  Many are troubled with despair and depression at this time of year, whether it be due to loss of loved ones due to death, sickness, or divorce, or maybe due to fractured relationships that have brought pain and suffering into a person's life.  Or for some it may come from more natural causes such as pain from cancer, arthritis, or other health issues that lead to despair and discouragement, and even the decreasing sunlight and long nights may be a contributing factor.  Beloved, if you are one of those who dreads the Christmas season and cannot find the joy that it appears others have, know that God in His benevolent wisdom has given you an antidote for the feelings that envelope you at this time.  That antidote is the Holy Spirit, freely poured out on all believers as a free gift to those who repent of their sins and confess Jesus Christ as their Lord and Savior.

Jesus told the disciples in John 14:16 "And I will ask the Father, and He will give you another Helper, that He may be with you forever.v17 that is the Spirit of  truth, whom the world cannot receive, because it does not behold Him or know Him, but you know Him because He abides with you and will be in you. v18 I will not leave you as orphans, I will come to you."  And so Jesus told His disciples that He would leave them with a Helper, the paracletos in Greek, which means helper, counselor, or advocate.  Jesus went on to explain that this Helper would know the truth in all things, and would freely reveal the truth to us if we just asked for it, and that the world would not be able to receive the Helper because it does not know Him or Jesus Christ.  So we have the opportunity to also receive the Helper, the Holy Spirit of God, if we simply get our hearts right with God and ask Father God for a part of Himself to come abide with us.

Jesus made it clear that the world would not be able to give this Helper, and Paul makes the same point in 1 Corinthians 2:14 but a natural man does not accept the things of the Spirit of God, for they are foolishness to him, and he cannot understand them, because they are spiritually appraised.  Jesus also says in John 14:27 "Peace I leave with you; My peace I give to you, not as the world gives do I give to you. Let not your heart be troubled, nor let it be fearful."  Beloved, look to the Lord Jesus and to the Holy Spirit if you are troubled and fearful this season of the year.  The world and all its darkness and hopelessness will never be able to comfort or counsel us, will never be able to take the trouble and fear out of our hearts.  Trust the Lord, He has promised us the antidote for trouble and fear, the gift of His Holy Spirit.  May God bless you this day as you move forward in the Kindgom.  in Christ, Jim