Dear Brothers and Sisters in Christ,
I hope this month brings forth renewed Joy in the spirit in your hearts and souls and I pray that you keep holding onto the faith that Jesus Christ is the truth and the light. I know that faith is hard sometimes, but it’s the riddle inside the enigma that once you obtain will allow believers to feel the Holy Spirit and understand God’s word, follow it, and bring forth changes to better the Kingdom of Heaven.
I know that many of you who are going through trials are seeking deliverance because I read each and every one of your emails. I know these times are hard and sometimes scary. It’s a big test of faith, and I pray that you find the faith to not only endure the trial, but also to rejoice and be thankful for the trial. That’s right, actually be thankful and praise him FOR the trial. A parent disciplines a child out of Love and our God is no different. We may be under correction, or demon’s are trying to destroy us for what we are about to do for God.
I want to write about trials today because they are one of the hardest things we can endure as Christians and it seems like every other email I get is about some hardship someone is going through. There are many kinds of trials, and each one is specifically designed for you and you alone.
Many of you elders and Pastors know what I am talking about, and when you hear someone’s situation, you can’t help to want to care for them and help them get through it, but in most cases, they need to get through it themselves.
Sometimes people email me for support, or just fellowship and they tell me about the situation they may be going through. Often times I think to myself “that’s really not that bad” but it IS bad to the person going through it. Everyone has their own weaknesses in the flesh, and or spiritually and God custom designs the trials for each believer to learn from. I have learned that all trials are hard to endure because they bring about change. Change is what God is trying to do.
Due to my past growing up, my biggest fear is security. I need to feel like I have the finances to take care of my family, my bills, my ministries so I am especially fearful of trials that involve my finances. Financial trials are hard for ME to endure. I want to know that next month is secure, my kids are fed, and my wife is able to have the finances to take care of our family.
One of the things that I have learned as a follower of the way, and a brother in the light that is Jesus Christ is that if God wants to change you, he will. All he has are trials at his disposal to change you. That is one of the ways God likes to change us and make us more like him. I have learned that trials sometimes last a long, long time. Years in fact.
I just was taken out of what was a long and financial trial and now I am suffering from false persecution and the enemy trying to destroy my reputation. He is seeking any puppet he can find to use to destroy me. The enemy was using every means he could come up with to ruin my business and to take away my finances. He entered two great people and caused them to be dishonest. It caused my family much stress and anxiety and I am so glad that 2010 and 2011 and most of 2012 are gone.
That was the year that I learned to be a better shepherd of my money, and not to put faith in people but in Jesus Christ of Nazareth.
In 2009 the enemy was in full swing and God had me in a trial to teach me to be a better shepherd of HIS money, and not spend so much on prideful living. It took my wife and I a year to learn this. We thought that he was blessing us for our generous giving, and while he did for a while, soon it turned into prideful living. There is a difference. I learned that God will let you run on grace for a while, but then its basic training.
In the heat of the trial, I was so close to God it was amazing. I was so close to being late on the mortgage, and my bills that I really pushed in. I was in the word in the morning and in the evening and pushed in at our care group on Wednesday and really pushed into church in Sunday. Finances were so bad I began to praise him harder, and through the Holy Spirit I was reminded about how I give away to much finances to people I just meet at church, and or help people that I just meet, and or spend way too much money on food, clothes, etc.
You see, there is a right way and a wrong way to give. I was giving the wrong way.
You know those types that come to church, in the heat of a problem with life, and a trial. They are on fire at first, they come maybe two weekends, then you don’t see them again. I don’t mean to gossip and or call out these people, I know that those reading this understand that I don’t mean to criticize. It’s just that I wanted to give you an example because many of you know people like this.
When I would meet these people, most of their problems or crisis’s were financial in nature. I would then offer to build websites, start firms, and in many cases loan money. What I learned in this trial is that I need to really “pray” about who to give money too. I would come to their aid like superman, cut a check, and try to “solve” their problems. In almost all cases, they still backslid and or left the church.
I spent way to much over the years doing this, when the money could have went to Thailand cleaning up the child prostitution, or building churches in Cambodia.
The Holy Spirit began to show me all of my wrongs, my sins, and I felt a huge weight lift off my shoulders when I asked for forgiveness of my high living, and wrong giving. I felt a peace and I began to praise him even harder.
A few days later, I managed to sell some assets of my company for a large sum of money. That’s how trials work. Once you really have “real” faith, when God knows you’re not faking it, and you really begin to “understand” what you’re doing and change it will be over in the blink of an eye.
This month I pray specifically that those of you going through financial trials press in like never before. Father God I pray that those that are hurting, suffering, and losing faith are restored and renewed. I pray that your covering goes over all of these Brothers and Sisters who server you and your mercy endures in their lives.
I also pray that our country can get on the right path and get out of a slump that has caused so much pain and suffering.
Your brother in Christ,